Sandy Hook Tragedy Claimed to be a “Hoax”

We received the following unsolicited e-mail entitled “Gun Control is Treason” from freedomnetwork@global.net on Saturday the ninth of February 2013. To say it is in poor taste is a massive understatement, it does, however, provide an insight into a deluded mind and the lengths that the American right-wing nut jobs will go to, to justify the insane notion that gun ownership is a necessary right.

Overwhelming evidence has surfaced to prove that Sandy Hooks is a hoax. For example, the recently released CNN helicopter footage that is supposed to show children escaping from the school is obviously set somewhere else.

Unsolicited e-mail claiming that the Sandy Hook tragedy is a hoax.

The “grieving” parents are surprisingly joyful during their interviews. The footage from the early hours of the incident shows a traffic pattern that makes it impossible for emergency vehicles to operate. There are many other points with various degrees of credibility, but anyone doing serious research should find plenty to disprove the “official” story. In spite of this, many people still manage to believe the TV version of the Sandy Hoax drama.

The critics often say that it is crazy to believe that Sandy Hook is a hoax, but this is simply an irrational emotional response. Their main argument is that the media and the government would not make such a big lie and then lie so poorly. This is the exact working principle of the “Big Lie”, one of Hitler’s techniques. Many people know about this technique and then fall for it anyway. Another common claim is that it’s hard to fake that many deaths, but the “victims” could have been easily paid off to live with new identities. Regardless of the facts, sheeple believe what is shown on TV. They are suffering from the Stockholm Syndrome – they’ve learnt to love Big Brother. Accurate information and logic do not matter to them. Without the means to defend themselves, they are just sheep being led to the slaughter.

The proposed gun control legislation does not improve public safety, but reduces the ability of the people to resist tyranny. High capacity magazines are not necessary to kill unarmed people or commit crime, but are very important for fighting armed minions of a tyrannical government, and deterrring a foreign enemy invasion. Making fighting weapons less available to people reduces their ability to defend themselves. People without the ability to defend themselves are at greater risk than people that can defend themselves.

While the threat of a crazy gunman exists, it pales in comparison to the threat of a murderous government. Murderous governments are not fiction, but historical fact and have emerged virtually everywhere where gun control has been put in place. Even today, millions of political prisoners are being tortured to death in communist countries. People point to the many Western nations that have gun control but no murderous governments as examples, but these governments know that if they were to start killing their own people, Americans would step in. America is the last bastion of freedom on the planet and that is why America is under sustained attack.

The biggest threat to America today comes from within. That threat is traitors in high positions. These traitors work covertly and watch their actions carefully lest they become exposed in a manner that removes the doubt of the public, most of whom cannot believe that such massive treason can take place in our society. They have chosen the ideal cover for their goals of subverting America – the guise of public servants. Using their positions of power, they have gradually eroded our freedoms and rights to further increase their own power. America is now on the brink of dictatorship, where this small group of traitors can have unlimited control of the nation.

The ignorance of the public makes tyranny possible. Many people still believe the Sandy Hoax made for TV drama/story. This amazing feat of ignorance can only be explained by a mental disorder. This type of mass psychosis is one of the conditions necessary for a brutal regime to come to power with popular support. This is the type of mass psychosis that has fueled the public support of murderous dictators like Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot. This type of mass psychosis is now prevalent in America and the traitors know it. It is no surprise that they are now seeking to disarm the rest of us, so that we cannot resist their planned tyranny.

Gun control legislation is in direct violation of the Constitution that the legislators have sworn an oath to uphold. The Constitution recognizes and protects the right of the People to own firearms and to use them for self-defense. These are not privileges granted by the Constitution, they are God-given rights that are recognized and protected under the Constitution. They are rights that every legislator has sworn an oath to protect, regardless of religion. Legislation that violates the Constitution is an act of treason. Planning such legislation is planning to commit treason. Feindstein is one of the people planning this, but she is not alone. Feindstein herself has suspicious links to communist China. With leaders like this, it is not surprising that China’s economy bloomed while California’s withered. Her co-conspirators may have similar alternative allegiances. If they can disarm the people and rewrite the Constitution, there will be nothing to stop them from making policies to imprison people opposed to them, or to use their positions of power for profit at the expense of the nation. They are already filthy rich from having done that.

Some people say that the weapons available to the people are not sufficient to protect freedom from tyranny, because the state has much more powerful weapons. There is truth to this criticism and this is because the state has been gradually eroding self-defense rights of the people for some time now. Under the Constitution the people should be able to possess the same weapons as the government, without restrictions. That includes fully-automatic weapons. Needing a permit for concealed carry is already an infringement of the Second Amendment. At the same time, the state has been arming itself to the teeth, including armored vehicles and drones. These weapons are a threat to our freedom and our lives. That money should be used to build our communities, instead of holding us hostage. The legislation that infringes on our rights needs to be removed and our rights must be restored and vigilantly guarded

While we’re not sure if this e-mail is meant to be taken seriously or not, we have discovered that there is a Freedom Network who peddle this kind of insensitive conspiracy nonsense.

Just to make it clear, we here at the Rational Skeptics Society do NOT believe that the tragedy that befell those people at Sandy Hook was a government led conspiracy designed to introduce gun control. Furthermore, we not only support gun control, but go as far as to recommend that recreational gun ownership be outlawed. For far too long, law abiding citizens have been held to ransom at the hands of the gun industry, and its political arm the NRA. Americans who fear that their government might implement a policy which would require an armed response from its citizenship, would do well to recognise that they are no longer living under the reign of a foreign king, rather they elect their own leaders. The real threat they face, (and where their fear should be directed), is from the National Rifle Association, whose constant political interference has enabled American citizens, not to rise up against an imagined governmental threat, but to slaughter other citizens with guns that are readily available under the pretence that a person has some kind of “right” to own them. The sad truth is that organisations like the NRA, who have no mandate from the citizens they claim to represent, poke their nose into politics in order to protect their money-making industry.

Like 911, holocaust denial or the belief that global warming is only being espoused by scientists so that they can get grant money, there is a lie around the Sandy Hook incident, but it is not that it is a hoax, it is that there WAS a hoax. The “hoax” has been invented by right-wing nut jobs, who are trying to make out that people should be more afraid of the government they elected, than the crazy people who are allowed to bear arms under the out-dated, backward thinking, Second Amendment.

We would like to extend our sympathies to all those in Sandy Hook, and everywhere else, who have been touched by gun violence, and hope that the rest of us have the courage and fortitude to take responsibility for ensuring that we do everything we can to prevent these tragedies from happening again.

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Retire? In our moment of insolvency?

So … apparently some 60% of Americans have less than $25,000 in savings and investments according to a Bloomberg article. Approximately 14% are confident that they will be capable of retiring when the time comes at age 65. For most, the plan is to continue working beyond 65 in order to be able to retire at all.

Ok, first of all, some of this is not the fault of those individuals. When one is living literally cheque to cheque and bills gobble up all available cash on a constant basis, it is hardly their fault that they have very little savings. Of course, that greatly depends on the nature of the bills. Need money for food = fine. Need money for another $300 trip to the salon like you have 2 weeks ago = not so much. As sure as there are individuals that struggle to make ends meet, there are just as many (if not more) that choose to live like that. That choose to take on as much debt as they are possibly capable of and live all their “tomorrow” days in the here and now.

But there is another problem here, a little more obscure. Those that choose to live like this more so than the others that do not have a choice are necessarily ruining the job market for the young trying to come up themselves. Easy enough to just casually say “you’ll just work  little longer”. Each day an individual does not vacate their job when they’ve reached the age of retirement is another day that a new individual will not hold that job. I understand that the economics are bad now, but for a good portion, this is a fault of trying to live beyond ones means as opposed to living within them. People see “the good life” and want it, but they cannot afford it. But they can rent it out for a short period at the expense of their future comfort and that of the next generation.

Don’t get me wrong here. I am not saying that older workers are not valuable. They will toot their own horns on that – telling us all about their “experience” with a position or in working in general. I need not point out the insipidity of pointing out you have experience while denying anyone else the ability to gather that same experience. But beyond even this, we need to realize that experience is not everything. Younger bodies, faster minds, new ideas count as well. Those that dig deep and remain in a position can doom it to stagnation while they are there. Yes, they are experienced . Yes, they have been good workers. But isn’t there a time when they need to be laid aside, thanked for their work, and left behind by the business? As I stated, this helps them but hurts the new comers that need jobs to get on their feet. Might just be me, but it seems wrong to force a young person to wait until they are 30 or 35 to get a job most boomers had when they were 20.

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Legislating reality

Ok …. 0_o

So the Republicans in Congress down in the states were defeated in a bill yesterday. No biggie – happens all the time to both parties down there, right? Someone tries to get a bill passed and it meets with defeat. This can be good and bad depending on the bill. SOPA was murdered? That’s good. Socialized healthcare was neutered? That’s bad. Some of them might be a matter of opinion as to the good and the bad, but the fact remains that some will be defeated and some will pass.

But this little one from yesterday is right up there among the most moronic bills they have tried to pass in recent years. I mean this from a straight-up “failure of reality” standpoint. One similar to the “Pizza is a Vegetable” stupidity. Now, I know that one was related to the tomato sauce on the pizza, but it was still knuckle-dragging stupid and even the people that defended it should be honest about that. But this one tops that by miles. Had it passed, it would have been one more notch toward proving that the Republicans are insane.

They had a bill put forward that was trying to declare that the Bush Tax Cuts had nothing to do with the deficit. Not one thing. Think about that for a moment. They wanted to state for the legal record that the trillion dollar cuts to the Federal Government’s income had nothing at all to do with the inability of Government to pay its expenses. Are you seeing what I’m getting at here – Government slashes its revenues, revenues it needs to pay for its many programs, Departments, employees, and so forth. It still needs to pay for these things after the cuts because it never cuts these programs at the same time to keep cash in the same as cash out. So it …. come on, say it with me here … borrows long term debt to pay for short term expenses. But that has nothing to do with the deficit and you’d be a fool and a communist to state otherwise. Takes one’s breathe away, doesn’t it?

How utterly and completely stupid. No, that’s putting down the stupid. How absolutely and utterly shit-brained. These people are literally shitheads. Can you imagine trying to legislate that into reality; basically, they are trying to legislate reality. It would be the same as legislating the sky as being Yellow, lava as cold, gravity as intelligent falling, or so on. This is asinine in its stupidity and ridiculous in the level of bald-faced lie that it represents. People – facts are not democratic. They cannot be voted on – they are or they are not. Tax cuts increase debt and deficit if there is no corresponding cut to service – that is a fact. As much a fact as electrons being attracted to positive charges. As much a fact as that the earth revolves around the sun. As much a fact as humans needing oxygen to breathe and live. These are facts. That bullshit that they tried to pull is fantasy – no, not just fantasy, but purposefully misleading bullshit designed to give themselves and their republican supporter assholes a supposed means of winning arguments about the tax cuts and the deficit. They are dead set on the deficit being anything but their fault and they are willing to lie to make it so.

How the hell do you people put up with them?

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Retirement idiocy

Do you want to retire someday?

Most people will answer yes to that question. Hell, who wouldn’t? Unless you have one of the most amazing jobs in the world (booby inspector, chocolate taster, etc), you will get to the point where you will no longer want to work anymore. This is inevitable – as we age, we slow down and work generally becomes more difficult. Few wish to work until the day they die … though, as I state this, I realize that this is one of those “first world problem” things. True, in third world nations, the general tendency is to work until death, so this is a bit of an elitist mentality, but bear with me here.

Anyway, retirement. We all want to do it with few exceptions. Now, the problem of late with that idea has been with the composition of the population. There are more old people than there are young and that is causing a heavy drain on retirement resources. In Canada, this means a drain on the OAS and GIS. The OAS is the Old Age Security payment provided by the government to all individuals in the country over the age of 65. The GIS is the Guaranteed Income Supplement that provides an extra boost to income for those individuals on OAS that do not get enough money to make ends meet. Canada also has the CPP – the Canadian Pension Plan, but that is a contributions plan, requiring you to work and have paid in to get money out.

Anyway, recently, the Conservative Party (whom currently makes up the Government) has let it be known that there will need to be some changes to the OAS and GIS so that these payment programs can remain viable. One such plan is to increase the age that one gets these payments to 67 from 65. That one, I don’t have a big problem with as such. People are living longer and so forth so it does make some sense to do that. However, their other plan is to create a new type of retirement savings plan that people can contribute to, similar to the RSP that many large employers operate. Only with two key differences. The first is that these will be established by employers through third party organizations, as opposed to being employer run. The second is that there are no employer contributions to these plans. These are for the employee to fund and them alone. Funds will be placed into the hands of financial institutions that will invest the money in the market. All risks will be borne by the employee. If the market tanks and the fund manager had it in a retarded location, too bad. You’re retirement is gone.

What’s my problem with this plan? Let me see. The reliance on the market to accrue the value into the fund for the individual to retire. One shift of the market and you have nothing. Oh, what’s that? The markets are always going up? You’re … you’re right! How naive of me? How could I forget that it has increased over these years?! I have to go take a look at this bastion of gain right now …. Wait a minute. Why is this company trading for $100 a share that month and $5 the next? Why … if I didn’t know better, I’d say that the increase in the market is the average performance of all stocks over the indices over time. That average hides dizzying highs (that you cannot get a piece of) and terrible lows (that you somehow get caught holding the bag for). Strange that – the market is completely unstable. You’re better off betting it all on black at Vegas. At least they’re upfront about being there to rip you off.

So my first concern is that the market does not a retirement guarantee. What of bonds or financial instruments? Funny, we already have that in the RRSP, the Registered Retirement Savings Program. A program that allows you to invest money tax free when you are younger and paying higher tax and take it out when you are old and paying lower tax. That does the job well enough, though it must be taken back into income over time or you risk getting it dumped in and paying out the ass for it.

But my second concern is for that guy over there, the individual that makes a fairly low wage. You know, the one living cheque to cheque. The one without savings of any kind. The one that cannot afford to invest in any sort of retirement. The individual that relied on the Government program existing to, you know, survive when they retire. This program is not going to help them – quite the opposite. When the time comes, they will be the people either homeless or sitting at the mall all day to stay warm because they can’t afford to heat their place. You can make all the savings plans and investment plans and such that you like. If the money is not there to put into them, then when retirement comes, they’re shit out of luck.

The only humor to all that is that the old are the largest of all voting blocks. How long do you think putting them out to pasture with nothing will actually work, hmmm?

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The media bias!

What media?

The Liberal Media! One of those terms that you hear that you just get used to, even parrot yourself on occasion. “Liberal media”. Rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it? Didn’t used to, but that was before a concerted effort was made to make the term become firmly associated with the news media. It’s an indictment of the media – an attempt to accuse it of having a particular bias. A bias toward left leaning thought, of handling those on the left with kid gloves and ruthlessly attacking the right, and showing contempt for all things conservative.

Old Newt is the most recent politician to spout this canard to the public. His assertion recently has been that the liberal media hates him and is actively trying to destroy his campaign. He also implied that Obama would not have gotten in were it not for the media. The article where this stuff can be seen is located here: http://townhall.com/columnists/larryelder/2012/01/26/creators_oped/page/full/

To be blunt, this is bullshit. Let’s break down the reasons why:

The first (in this case) is that Obama’s opponent was not exactly a contender in that election. One cannot blame the media for a lame candidate and an even more ridiculous vice president pick. To be fair, Biden is not exactly a five star candidate either, but he wisely kept his mouth shut for most of the campaign.

The media does have a bias, but it tends more toward common sense. Claiming that it is “liberal” seems to basically make the claim that common sense is “liberal”. That is not the case – liberals no more have a locked grip on common sense than conservatives. Some conservatives treat any criticism of them as an attack by the media due to bias, but it is this common sense that is the root of the attack. Stating that Santorum is a homophobic bigot is not liberal bias – it’s merely repeating what he said and drawing the obvious conclusion from it. A man cannot say that homosexuals should be kept from the military or marriage to ensure our moral purity without being called a homophobe. Not because of liberal bias – but because he is a homophobe. Simple as that.

The other reason is that the effect of this supposed bias is that they cannot engage in hate speech, anti-islamic rhetoric, or other forms of bile without someone, somewhere pointing out that it is what it is – bigotry and hate and so forth. If your financial grasp is akin to that of an ignorant and petulant child – constantly spouting poorly thought out and mindless crap like “we need lower taxes to stimulate more jobs” even if all the other drops in taxes did not such thing and the media calls you on it? Tough shit, asshole. Your ideas do not conform to reality. That is not bias – it’s reality.

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Out of the SOPA …

… and into the ACTA.

We’ve all heard of SOPA and its retarded relative that were passing through the US House of Representatives. We all heard how it was going to destroy the Internet as we knew it, render it into a barren wasteland of controlled acts run by mega-conglomerates. And we all know how the Internet rallied and put it on indefinite hold or even killed the damn thing. Go Internet!

Well, wouldn’t you know it, but the old saying is true: the price of freedom is eternal vigilance. Much as TED Talks has indicated in a rather popular piece about SOPA that a speaker at TED did recently. Here is a link to this talk – let me note that it came out just a week or two ago (Early January 2012) which was pretty good timing as it turned out. http://www.ted.com/talks/defend_our_freedom_to_share_or_why_sopa_is_a_bad_idea.html

The price of this victory over those that seek to force the Internet to conform and obey is simple – we will have to be vigilant against similar acts against us in the future. And in the present. For while SOPA was finally able to draw some mainstream media attention and get the backs of the collective Internet up, another agreement has been silently slipping by us all, undetected. This one, however, is much more insidious. For this is not an act of the US House or the Canadian Parliament, or any of the countries involved. Rather, this is a new trade agreement that has been on the go for some time. A trade agreement called ACTA, which is meant to outline and empower governments internationally to be capable of using SOPA-like powers and more. This is an agreement that has been arranged in secret – though we know that they have been doing it due to leaks and such, we did not get an idea of its full contents until recently. And those contents are terrifying. Closure of websites, removal from DNS, tracking and suing individuals that violate copyright … hell, even stopping you from buying generic brand drugs instead of the expensive brand name ones. This one has it all. And not a word has been breathed about it. Not one word in the Media. Yet this is an act that plans on destroying the Internet as surely as SOPA would have wished to have done.

We need to do what we did to SOPA to ACTA. Contact your representative; get involved in boycotts of service, the works. This agreement covers the EU, Canada, the US, Mexico, and Japan. We all need to get on board to killing this bastard too.

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War on common sense

Recently, the Liberal Party of Canada announced that it was making a platform change on its stance toward illegal drugs. They announced that it was now the position of the Party that Marijuana would be legalized if they are voted into power in the next election cycle. They have reasons – trying to attract the stoner vote is one – but in any case that is their position.

It’s a position that I happen to agree fully with. Let me preface this with a declaration: I don’t do drugs of any kind or type. The closest I come these days is alcohol and I have a single ounce of that a night mixed into soda. The alcohol content of the types I drink is such that it can be considered negligible. I don’t smoke tobacco or imbibe caffeine, nor do I take any controlled substance. Marijuana, meth, heroin, cocaine, crack, E, pain killers, and so forth – I don’t touch them. I don’t need them and I do not prefer the idea of altering my perceptions as it tends to allow individuals people to fool my senses. That lack of control over my body is not desirable to me.

That said, I have nothing against anyone taking any of these substances, even to their own personal detriment, as long as it does not affect others negatively. That even goes for alcohol – be a drunk if you must, just don’t kill or hurt anyone in the process. Crack? Sure, if you think you don’t mind the negative effects of imbibing the substance, go right on ahead. Especially Marijuana though – it is as harmless a drug as nicotine or even more so. I have yet to find any solid evidence that it causes lung cancer like tobacco. Take anything you want, just keep it to yourself.

Part of the reason for this stance is that I am a political, economic and social pragmatist. I am fairly centered in my views. From that position, the issue of drug use is one that edges on the Liberal – Libertarian side of my thought process. Legalize and regulate within reason. People should be free to do what they wish to their bodies. The Government should be there to regulate the industry in regards to standards for the production and sale of the products.

The reason I bring this up is an article from the UK. Apparently, the Government there is re-opening the decisions on the legality of drugs there after a 10 year gap. An article on the matter provides the opinion that these substances should be legal as it would decrease crime and increase revenue. See the article here: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/2012/01/24/drugs-laws-is-legalisation-an-acceptable-alternative-115875-23714663/

As I stated, I agree with this stance. The revenues would be a welcome addition to Government coffers, there would be less need for prisons and the components that go with that, the number of violent crimes would decrease, the amount of police to handle more serious crimes would increase, and criminal organizations that depend on the trafficking would find themselves without steady income.

Yes, that includes all manners of drugs. The current prohibitions have done nothing to curb use. Use has actually increased along with population so the “war” has been meaningless. Some argue that legalization would open the door for children to start taking them in mass amounts. That does not really make any sense – regular restrictions would govern the sale to minors and the regulation would have a chilling effect on the “cool” factor of use. You aren’t sticking it to the man when you do them – you are actually paying him for the privilege. The negatives of a few children using are more than negated by the benefits of eliminating the criminal organizations that use it as their funding model. Besides, kids can get them now about as easily. There are always going to be individuals who will do these things – legal or illegal will not matter. It is on their parent to indicate the difference of taking the drug or not.

The upshot is that something different needs to be done. The war on drugs has been waged for decades and it hasn’t made a single inch in progress. Billions are wasted on it and individuals are criminalized for puffing on the dried leaves of a plant. This would be fine if it worked, but it doesn’t work. It has never worked. It is a money pit, nothing more. Only lunatics keep trying the same thing over and over expecting a different result. Cut it off and try something new.

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RONI PAUL!

Ron Paul is not going to win the Republican Presidential Candidate nod. There, I said it. Hardly an earth shattering prediction there, I know, but it has to be said. He will not win the nod. Romney will – maybe Romney will get sly and choose him as the running mate, but I doubt that.

So he won’t get a chance to run in the national election. That’s too bad, really. I mean that. Ron Paul looks like a nice man and one could argue that it’s “his turn” to try for the top seat, but sadly he will not get the opportunity. Not that he could really defeat Obama anyway. I don’t say that lightly – I am not implying that Obama is a powerhouse of a political force or anything of the sort. But let’s get real here, the chances of defeating an incumbent President are usually fairly low, so even were Paul the Republican Candidate, it would be an uphill battle.

And, let’s get honest here, that’s a good thing. Paul has some mighty strange ideas when it comes to what he would do as President. True, there are things that he would want to do that are not technically within the powers of the President. True, there are things that Paul would do that are positive and even beneficial. But let’s cut to the chase here – Paul has some rather negative ideas as well, ideas that would be like poison to the Union, even ideas that reduce the overall “Liberty” that he claims to love so much.

Things like removing the Federal protection for women to have an abortion. I am not getting into the different dimensions and arguments surrounding abortion – those are arguments for different times. Just boil the issue back to one of rights and freedoms – a woman has the liberty to abort, good or bad. Paul would revoke that right. That is contrary to his status as a Libertarian.

So is his position on drugs and drug use. Many of Paul’s supporters back him merely because he stated that he would stop the Federal Governments war on drugs. Mind you, even I agree that this “war” needs to be stopped and the entire campaign against narcotics rethought. However, Paul does not wish to merely provide a “get out of jail free” card here or even a pass to smoke your weed or snort your heroin or whatever. Instead, he wants to eliminate the Federal war on drugs in place of providing the states the right to wage that same war. That is, provide the states the responsibility to decide what to do about drugs and their use. Before you celebrate, know that most states would and have prohibited the sale, production, and use of drugs all on their own, in addition to the Federal rules. Some states desire more harsh treatment of individuals that are found with drugs that the Federal rules disallow. Paul is not out to make weed legal, he’s out to make it a state problem to deal with.

Paul adheres to a form of constitutionalism. Before you jump to the conclusion I seem to imply, I agree with the most basic tenant of constitutionalism, that of a governing body being limited by a set code of law that describes what they may and may not do. Canada has a constitution and it is one that I agree with for the most part and one that I enjoy seeing used to limit how the Federal and Provincial governments may conduct business. I’m serious – it’s hilarious. Seeing a government pass a bill only for the Supreme Court knock it down as unconstitutional is a good laugh, though an infrequent one. Paul is a constitutionalist, so he’s good people to me, right? Yes and no. Yes, because the idea that the Constitution limits the Government is good. No, because the power he seeks to limit constitutionally are not in the constitution to limit.

Paul is following a common interpretation of the Constitutional Document and its Amendments pursued by many Libertarians. That interpretation promotes the idea that the powers outlined in that document must be read in as narrow a manner as possible. In any case where an amendment or clause is vague, the resulting interpretation should construe the power it grants to be as small as possible. This interpretation is used to support the idea that many of the agencies of the Government, created from the power interpreted from the Constitution are illegal and should be eliminated. The reasons provide to explain why these powers should not be governmental are myriad – liberty, free market nonsense, inefficiency – and I will not discuss them at the moment. A thought for later, maybe?

Anyway, suffice it to say that this angle on the constitution seeks to narrow and flatten Federal power in an effort to decrease the size of the Government and accrue more “liberty” for the people. Liberty is in quotes here and there is a good reason for that – liberty in this context is rarely defined in a clear manner or in a way that accounts for all the possible repercussions of a given act of “increasing liberty” (or even what increasing it actually means). The problem with that method of interpretation is that it is not the interpretation that the Federal Government uses. The Federal Government generally uses the interpretation of the Supreme Court, which decides matters of adherence to the document in lieu of cases brought before it that impinge upon those rules. The Supreme Court has, in turn, read the document and found protections in some manners, expansions in others, and reductions in still others. There is nothing in their interpretation that is illegal or immoral and it is that interpretation that is used to create or enforce a given program or law.

Paul and his supporters dislike that interpretation and seek to change it – to change the interpretation of the document from that of the Supreme Court to that of their own wants. Gone would be the Commerce Department, an agency with a small budget that promotes Business in the Union. To them, this is an agency that was illegally created from, get this, the Supreme Court reading of the Commerce clause of the Constitution. Takes your breathe away, doesn’t it? Same with the Environmental Protection Agency, created from the same clause (if I recall correctly) to provide environmental protection. Illegal, they say – a gross abuse of power. Paul supports that view and that view is, frankly, batshit insane. This interpretation would move the Government, legislatively speaking back a century or two. Any agency or program it created during this time would be illegal and eliminated.

The problem with that? Beyond the inherent unbalanced nature of such an action? It makes no contextual sense. The Constitution is a living document – a set of rules that must flex as time passes and society changes. The founding fathers were not gods among men – they were humans with pretty good intentions and a couple of sharp thinkers. Thinkers so sharp that they made the language of the document vague enough that it could be applied and re-interpreted as things changed. And they have. The Civil Rights Act – you know, the one that stopped a potential second civil war (this one over race) from occurring – is not in the Constitution. Not blatantly. But it does say “…that all men are created equal.”, does it not? People were not following the Constitution when they discriminated against African Americans because they are men and men are equal. So the Government made an Act to enforce that portion of the Constitution. Simple as that. That is not a power that it should not have possessed – it was a power it was 100 years late in exercising.

The point is simple. Ron Paul is a decent man, but he should not be President. His view of the law and the Government are demonstrably false and his intentions are almost all categorically against the health of the Union that is the United States.

Still, for evil assholes like myself (at times – my sense of humor can be fairly sick), a Ron Paul presidency would be a gold mine of insanity. Were it not for the Supreme Court, it would be amusing to have him be the President and watch the US tear itself apart. Good times, never to be.

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Deregulate? Whom exactly?

Hey ladies and gentlemen. Back in the saddle again … wonder how often I say that? Anyway, got a smallish rant here for you. It’s a thought that just struck me of late and it has to do with deregulation.

Deregulation is that little buzz word you hear from many Republicans and some Democrats as a means to prop up the economy and business and all that lovely nonsense. They argue that regulation is strangling off legitimate business, making it more and more difficult for competition to erupt and all that jazz. In some ways, they have a point, mostly on the international arena where a company might operate and compete against one that works in a country that has little regulation on the pollution that they can generate or the health of their workers. Of course, those for deregulation seem to tacitly give their approval of abusing human rights and killing the environment, thought every one of them would argue that that’s totally not what they mean, dude. Like, for sure.

Anyway, the people that push deregulation tend to be the conservative types, people that are on the side of businesses doing as they should do and all that. Nothing really outwardly wrong with the idea if it is tempered with a little common sense. That’s the case with many things in our little world. But there is something there that I’ve noticed and that others have noticed and it bears commentary. People that are for deregulation, that want the rules that ensure businesses and corporations mind their P’s and Q’s, don’t apply that same mentality to people. Not all of them, at least – some push for the deregulation of people as well, but they are far fewer in number. Bear with me here – politicians have been removing the regulations that stop a business from acting in a particularly nefarious manner while increasing the rules that stop you or I from doing the same. This is an important point. The argument seems to be that an individual cannot be trusted to act in a rational and honest manner while a corporation can be eminently trusted to do just that, though it is operated by the very people you do not trust at the individual level.

An example. Back in 1999 or so, the government of the US decided to remove key portion of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. One of  those measures were enacted so that Banks could not operate a risky business and place that risk into accounts that were insured by the Government. Basically, it separate the investment, insurance, and deposit taking portions of the Bank into separate businesses that, while related, could not transfer debts between them. A very wise precaution. However, it was argued – and I am dead serious about this – that these protections were unnecessary because (it was argued) that no bank in its right mind would ever do such a thing anyway. Take that in for a second; the argument basically hinged on the idea that the banks were, inherently, honest. That they would not operate in a manner that maximized their own benefits and gains at the expense of the taxpayer because it “wouldn’t make sense”. I’m dead serious here.

Did it work? Well, the Bank of America a month or so back transferred 56 TRILLION in credit swaps from it’s investment branch to the deposit branch. 56 trillion dollars worth of the stuff that had a heavy hand in the collapse in 2008. They calm transferred it into the pockets of the taxpayers. If they win, BoA gets the money. If they lose, the American taxpayer will be on the hook for them. Yes, honestly. I am not making this up. So much for “no banker would do such a thing”. They are just the latest to do just that.

At the same time portions of Sarbanes-Oxley was repealed, the DMCA was enacted. That little law provides corporations all sorts of protections … against you, of course. Protection from your “stealing” their copyrighted work, among other things. Most of the items in the PATRIOT Act are directed toward the reduction of individual liberty, while leaving much of business alone. Most of the tax cuts under Bush have been to business and not to individuals. A Bill here in Canada is being pushed through to criminalize all sorts of activity, not for business, but for individuals. Activity that is legal now, but won’t be in several months. Note – we have a conservative government right now.

The conclusion implied here should be obvious. Deregulation only means business. Screw the rest of us. Because, as you know, corporations NEVER break the law to the tune of billions of times worse than a single human can. Nope. Never. Saints really – we should canonize them for their awesome reputations.

And before it is stated, no I don’ t mean all business as such. Pretty such the Sobeys in my area isn’t dumping toxic waste or killing off species for profit. But a couple of bad eggs can ruin the carton for the rest.

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Bloody queer idea …

Great Britain (Wales, England, Scotland) have decided to lift the ban on homosexual men donating blood! Now, as long as they haven’t had totally gay sex in the last 365 days, then they are clear to make with the red stuff (Article).

What? Yes, I’m serious. 12 months between whoopie for gay men or it’s a no-go on blood donations. Seems a little … paranoid to me. Even more so to have a ban on all gay blood. Them damned UK … wait, appears that Canada has an identical ban and has recently stated that it might go to the 1 year deferral like the UK (Article).

Hmmm …. well, that sucks. Let me level with you here. I am not a homosexual myself, but I have to say that, while such a change could be applauded, the fact remains that this appears to be a gross generalization of the sexual activities of homosexual males. Yes, yes, I am aware of the view that HIV is seen among certain quarters as a “homosexual” disease, despite the actual statistics on infections. But let’s get a couple things straight here:

1. Blood is screened. They do that because people lie about their lives on a regular basis. Screen it or be sued.

2. HIV is not a homosexual disease. It is a STD. It transmits between males and females in whatever combination.

3. HIV is not the only STD. There are plenty and many are of a lower instance in the homosexual community. HIV is ultimately lethal, but that leaves a whole lot out.

4. Sexual activity is the determinant of potential infection. I will take a gay man in a monogamous relationship over a straight man that hooks up with a new piece of ass every night any day. It is all about how many penises / vaginas they are meeting, not whether they have a penis or a vagina themselves.

5. Blood is always in short supply. Why? Well, unlike what Kramer in Seinfeld would have you believe, there is no stockpiling blood. Blood is very, very short lived. Regular full blood lasts about 45 days. Platelets and Plasma lasts about 5 days. This is the reason that Blood Services are always calling out for donations. They are literally about a week from empty at all times.

6. Blood is blood. There is no difference between mine and yours, save our diets and overall health levels. If the man is clean, he’s clean. That’s all there is to it. Yes, you need to be cautious. Screen it for potential problems, but don’t make like that is something you’d only do to “gay” blood. You do that to all blood, no exceptions. I don’t care if it is from a Nun, test that shit. You never know.

 

Really, people? Are were still this backwards?

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