Saturday, February 6, 2010
Charlie Reese has been an admired personage in my reading for decades. His ability to reduce complicated issues to the simplest common denominator has been remarkable. My good friend Rich Vail at The Vail Spot offered this on his blog with the advice that the reader do with it as he pleased. My decision was easy at that point. I copied it and present it here for your consideration:
By Charlie Reese
Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.
Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?
Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?
You and I don't propose a federal budget. The president does.
You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.
You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does.
You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does.
You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.
One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one president, and nine Supreme Court justices equates to 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.
I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.
I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason.. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a president to do one cotton-picking thing. I don't care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes.
Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.
What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits.. The president can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.
The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House? Nancy Pelosi. She is the leader of the majority party. She and fellow House members, not the president, can approve any budget they want. If the president vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.
It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million can not replace 545 people who stand convicted -- by present facts -- of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.
If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair.
If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red ..
If the Army &Marines are in IRAQ , it's because they want them in IRAQ
If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way.
There are no insoluble government problems.
Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power. Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.
Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.
They, and they alone, have the power.
They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses.
Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees.
We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!
Charlie Reese is a former columnist of the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper."
That's it. Now, you have read it and I repeat the challenge which Rich offered to me: do with it as you see fit. Think about it, pass it on, tell your friends, or shout it to the house tops. To fail to do so could well cost us all our country.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 8:20 AM
Friday, February 5, 2010
Thursday, February 4, 2010
What a day of surprises. As usual, my day marched me past some of the best minds and writers in the blogosphere which of course, includes The Volokh Conspiracy. I find that a blog roll peopled by a strong percentage of law professors offers an intelligent and widely diverse offering of subject matter. By the nature of their profession they are accustomed to gathering facts, anticipating objections, and advocating their positions with passion. I don’t always agree with their conclusions on issues but I find them almost universally entertaining and enlightening. In search of material for this post I came across a picture of one of my favorites: Eugene Volokh (rhymes with “frolic.”)
Up to now, all my opinions of Volokh have been the result of his personal contributions to his blog and his ability to manage the twenty brilliant contributors. I had a mental picture of a bespectacled man in tweeds, with a pipe, with a grandfatherly appearance attempting to cram his wisdom into post adolescent brains with varying results at UCLA. Instead I found a handsome young Russian immigrant (at age 7) who precociously received his BS in computer science in 1983 at the age of 15. He received his JD in ’92 and has been on the faculty at UCLA since 1994. For a more complete look at an absolutely brilliant man, click here.
For those who followed the link, welcome back and you may now join me in wondering how we managed to throw our lives away while Volokh accomplished such remarkable things. Seriously, life isn’t a zero-sum game so we may both enjoy what we have managed to do and hopefully have a measure of pride in some of our accomplishments. You do have to admit though; this guy is a tiger.
The second surprise of the day is an incredible qualifying statement in the solicitation for 10 experienced attorneys for the Civil Rights Division, Voting Section Trial Attorney of the U.S. Department of Justice. For the full “help wanted” ad, click on this link. But first, look at these job requirements.
Applicants must possess a J.D. degree, be an active member of the bar in good standing (any jurisdiction), and have a minimum of three (3) years post-J.D. experience. Applicants must have substantial litigation experience, such as handling discovery, litigation strategy, motions practice, brief writing, interviewing witnesses, taking and defending depositions, trial preparation, trial practice, and negotiations. Applicants must have excellent interpersonal skills, be mature and self sufficient, communicate effectively orally and in writing, and possess excellent professional judgment.
In addition, the following qualifications are preferred: (1) substantive knowledge of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) and other statutes enforced by the section; (2) familiarity with the various analytical approaches utilized to review voting changes under Section 5 of the VRA; (3) experience investigating and/or litigating voting rights or civil rights cases; (4) federal judicial experience; (5) experience serving as the lead attorney in federal court cases; (6) familiarity with statistical methodologies used in civil rights cases; (6) and fluency in Spanish, Chinese, Korean, or Vietnamese languages.” (emphasis added)
I imagine that if you have spent your life devoted to the law and to Civil Rights law in particular, these requirements might not seem daunting. To those of us lacking these special qualifications they do look pretty stiff. However, the federal government is not the big bad wolf that is often portrayed. They have a heart and offer opportunity to all. Here follows the EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY/REASONABLE ACCOMODATION:
“The Civil Rights Division encourages qualified applicants with targeted disabilities to apply. Targeted disabilities are deafness, blindness, missing extremities, partial or complete paralysis, convulsive disorder, mental retardation, mental illness, severe distortion of limbs and/or spine. Applicants who meet the qualification requirements and are able to perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation are encouraged to identify targeted disabilities in response to the questions in the Avue application system seeking that information. For additional information for applicants with targeted disabilities, please contact the Civil Rights Division's Disability Program Manager, Diane Petrie, at (202) 514-3934; see also http://www.jan.wvu.edu/LEAD/index.htm and http://www.opm.gov/disability/PeopleWithDisabilities.asp .”
Apparently, they didn’t get the memo about “retardation” at the Justice Department. Or else, a suitable politically correct synonym was not immediately available. Is it possible that the federal government is the only one actually advertising for employees who are suffering from “mental retardation and mental illness?” Having dealt with them for over a half century and also having worked in three different departments (Justice, Commerce and Defense) for short intervals, I am easily persuaded that they are. This just happens to be the first time I have seen it actually posted with their imprimatur.
Now you know why it has been a day of surprises. May I add; a day of hysterical laughter as well. I roared every time I read the last quoted paragraph. Eugene, may I call you Eugene, you have provided more grins and giggles than I have had in years. Thank you ever so much. I enjoy your work and appreciate the stimulation.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 11:15 AM
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
It’s that time of year again. This coming Sunday, Animal Planet will host a renewal of what has now become a classic; The Puppy Bowl. Back by popular demand, from those who are either bored or have a natural dislike for football, NFL style, we offer a refuge for you. When the addicts in your house grab the chips, the beer, and their rowdy friends and head for the living room to watch the brute struggle for supremacy between Indianapolis and New Orleans just tell them you opt out. Go to the kitchen/bedroom/den or the garage if necessary and watch the rough and tumble of the competing Bowl game.
You will have an opportunity to watch some extremely natural rough and tumble action where the score doesn’t matter as much as the actions of the players themselves. It has become a “must watch” for football widows nation wide. The unpredictability of the players is hilarious and includes actions which would get them kicked out of the NFL. The show will be in progress from the pre-game to the wrap-up of the NFL contest.
In the following picture you can see one of the officials ejecting a player for unsportsmanlike conduct in a previous Puppy Bowl. Ever vigilant, the officials are among the best in the game.
Another annual treat from the Puppy Bowl will be continued this year with the presentation of the Kitty Half Time Show. As the puppies take a break and plan for the second half, the kitties take the field for your entertainment. They are a pretty cute bunch so don’t miss a minute of the half-time festivities. No worries here about a wardrobe malfunction—their outfits fit well and are very secure.
The penalty flags will be replaced by some Handi-wipes to mop up after any infractions, plus they will also provide a water bowl cam for a view from the bottom. In addition the Animal Planet has promised some bunny cheerleaders and a blimp full of hamsters to add to the festivities. A special addition will be five puppies rescued from a Missouri puppy mill.
Keep in mind the 180 minute show will air directly opposite the Super Bowl on Sunday, February 7. On our DISH cable, we get Animal Planet at 184 on the remote. I have no difficulty predicting the winner of this affair—it will be you. Get ready for nearly three hours of thrills and spills to keep you entertained.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 9:08 AM
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
In anticipation of the State of the Union address, we, as usual, combed the comments sections for responses to what that speech entailed. Some of those folks get really mean and say ugly things about our president. Others, not our readers obviously, get all torqued out when they deny he is not the second coming of George Washington. Since each one is presented under an anonymous label, there is no attempt at attribution. Each was selected because of a measure of cleverness or humor.
1. “Owebama is right. He is the difference. In 94 Clinton had the brains to moderate his excesses. Himself is clueless and the party of aging communist theoreticians, labor bosses and racial spoils hucksters will go down with him.”
2. “The teleprompter is to help Bambi with his A-B-C’s presentation.
A is for affirmative-action.
B is for Blame Bush.
C is for Communism.
D is for dictator.
E is for entitlement.
F is really B-plus.
G is for Geithner.
H is for hustler.
I is for me, me, me.
J is for jiving ya.
K is for Kenyan.
L is for lame duck.
M is for madrassas.
N is for what I can say (but you can’t).
O is for me, me, me.
P is for poseur.
Q is for quota.
R is for race card.
S is for Sasquatch.
T is for teleprompter.
U inherit my wild spending.
V is for vacation, vacation,vacation.
W is my scapegoat.
X is Tiger’s private life.
Y am I still president?
Z is for zip, zerO-bama. ??
Now you know your ABC’s… riding Scare Force One sure beats doing work to me. ??”
3. “No one has accused Mr. Obama of being a "Bolshevik.” ?????
4. “The EGO has landed!” (Ed: This was my personal favorite.)
Later, while reading the comments on American Thinker, I was similarly impressed with some of the wisdom relative to an article by Henry Oliner, titled “Why Elitists Fail.” You will profit handsomely from reading Mr. Oliner’s article. You will ice the cake by going to the comments and enjoy the wisdom of his readers as well. A few that struck me as “stand alone” quality are repeated here.
“A while back, some Obama supporter got into a debate with me, telling me that two Harvard Law professors thought he was brilliant and the writer also offered that he thought Obama was a genius.
My reply was in two parts.
First I wanted to see Obama's law school transcripts to see what his other professors thought of him as well.
Then I said that Albert Einstein was a true genius, but I doubted if he could run a Burger King - or a US Air Force base. Could you see Albert walking around the air strips and hangers in his rumpled sweater?” --- Jack Kemp
“It's simple; a man that does not know what he does not know is a fool!”
“And I'd argue that the virtues and learned skill of ranching would probably make me more fit to govern in Congress than any one of our "so called" geniuses who think they should rule us. Now that I think about it, I am sure I'd have more skills to balance a budget and cut out lobbyists because I can smell cow .... a mile a way!” --- easttexasrancher
This may be what the founders had in mind. By using the collective wisdom of the citizenry, we reach conclusions more likely to be in concert with the will of the people and to their mutual benefit. Personally, I don’t believe I can afford to be led by a genius of any sort.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 8:09 AM
Monday, February 1, 2010
We have, so far, survived the storm, and have about 7 to 8” of snow left to show for it. Since there’s not much in the forecast, we thank God for being spared. This is our seventh year here in the Ozarks and our little oak forest has taken its lumps over that time. I suspect that the fact that I have two freshly sharpened chains for the saw, plenty of gas mixture and chain oil, will be the insurance we need to prevent having to use it. It was purchased during the ice storm three years ago and I wore the “new” off it in the first week. If you’re curious, it’s a 20” Stihl Farm Boss, weighs as much as a two-year old kid, and, can be just as balky. But, like the kid, I really do love it.
Even though Granny worked all night, we still made it to church over icy roads and thoroughly enjoyed Bob Clark’s morning sermon. I’ll admit to slight nervousness when he made reference to the judgment before the Great White Throne. I’m certain we’ll make it that far but as Bob pointed out, we can’t be sure we’ll pass that hurdle. He did offer some suggestions which should make it easier.
An Alarming Discovery
This morning’s daily rounds of the blogosphere drew me to Atlas Shrugs and a post by Pam Geller. It provoked a sad memory of an experience I had repeatedly while I was in Germany in the early fifties. I was reminded of those I met who had been forcefully enlisted in the Hitlerjugend. At the age of ten they were drawn in to the Jungvolk and at 13, transferred to the HJ with the next step being, at 18, the army. Although the organization was para-military by nature, it was actually a function of the National Socialist Party and made official after the passage of the Youth Law in 1936. From the formal designation in 1932, it grew from a membership that year of 107,968 to 7,728,259 youngsters by the end of 1939. The training consisted of athletics, military arts, and mental conditioning to selfless devotion to Hitler and his goals.
The easiest way to understand the Nazi pathology is to Google the videos which capture the films of Leni Reifenstahl. She was the groundbreaking film maker who chronicled the rise of the 3rd Reich. Her films, for the time, were exceptional and earned her an unassailable reputation as the best of her time and the one to study for education in the documentary arts. In sight and sound she captured the Nazis in their sickest, most bombastic militarism in support of their socialist cause. She did 75 years ago what few today can match in documentary form.
During the rise of Hitler and what became an absolute dictatorship, the youth were a vital component and necessary for their success. The psychic keywords were self-sacrifice, unity of purpose, and devotion to leadership. In 1944, the final days of WWII, the Germans called upon the 12th Panzer Division which was made up exclusively of the kids of the Hitlerjugend. By that time, the western front was populated by battle-hardened men of several allied nations and the boys were no match for them.
This brings us back to the posting by Pam Geller which outlines current circumstances sanctioned and encouraged by Barack Obama to form a youth corps of his own here in the United States. In remarks earlier this year he stated that we should have such a thing with an enrollment and strength equal to the US military. Like much I read, when I saw that I said: “Yeah, right, that will never happen.” I was wrong. Not only did it happen but it is on-going.
Organizing for America is apparently the organization name for this program and in addition to Pam Geller’s remarks and endless links on the subject we have the syllabus for the internship program which is also available. After you click on the link and bring up Atlas Shrugs 2000, read Ms Geller’s remarks, then take a look at the OFA material which she has kindly included. Of special note is the reading list of out and out communists who are recommended. Please devote some time to absorbing this very revealing outline of what Obama has in mind for all of us and the means by which he plans to implement it. Keep in mind that what you see on the page was supplied by a school kid who actually received the material at a public school in Ohio.
You do not have to be a geezer who served in the occupation army in Germany sixty years ago to appreciate what is going on here. If you go to some of the links, you will have confirmation and enough information to terrify you. Part of recent legislation granted the Secretary of Education about $500,000,000 in discretionary funds to help promote this agenda. In today’s whirl of billions and trillions, 500 million is chump change (it figures to $1.50 per person) but it is enough to tip the scales toward participation in this vile program.
I beg you. Please go to the original and see for yourself. Once you have examined the facts personally, talk about it, complain about it, resist it, contact your representatives, write your letters to the editor, speak to school board members, call your brother-in-law, but, by all means necessary, keep this on the front burner. Also acquaint yourself with the idea that the reason he doesn’t care about how many congressmen fall by the wayside is simply because he wants to be a dictator. If you doubt this, name one member of the pre-war Reichstag. As long as Reid, Pelosi, Nelson, Bachus, Dodd, Frank, et al, get the job done which he wants—he doesn’t need them. He does not care. The narcissist-in-chief wants to be the top and only dog with any say-so. The reality is that he wants to destroy the United State of America. He’s no genius but he does recognize that kids are a significant avenue to reach that goal. Young voters were instrumental in getting him elected in the first place. History is on his side on that one.
Last week I mentioned that we had more than several robins pecking away in the back yard. Just before the snow came, we looked out over the two-acre patch in front of the house and there were hundreds scattered over the grass. In my life I have never seen that many robins in one place. There was one about ever 8 or 10 feet from front to back and side to side. My bird books don’t say anything about numbers in migration so maybe it’s normal. It’s no big deal but if you have expertise here, drop me a line and let me know. No, I don’t know whether they flew south or north. We were probably abandoned because a neighbor had a better quality of worms. Not one was observed at the feeder. Watching birds does become addictive after a while.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 5:27 AM