Friday, April 20, 2007

On Being Armed

I was listening to the radio today when they announced the funeral of Professor Liviu Librescu (a holocaust survivor) killed at Virgina Tech was taking place in Israel. According to the announcer, the widow of the professor blamed the easy access to guns in Virginia for his death. And yet I cannot find a google anywhere to back that up.

Surprisingly, our congress hasn't jumped on the blame the gun laws bandwagon as much as I expected. There is a bit here and there from various media outlets, but they are treading a slim line overall.

A reading of the second amendment ......

by me, average layman, tells me that we should not ban, restrict, or regulate guns at all. Instead, in my opinion, the second amendment actually uses polite language to direct (as in senior to subordinate) the states to maintain a militia and in so doing to keep its' citizens armed.

Robert Heinlein wrote that "An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life." I would add that "an armed society ensures a polite government" as well. For those who think GWBush is the second coming of Hitler, arm yourselves. For those who think we are being invaded by criminals intent on doing as they will at your expense, arm yourselves. If your spouse is abusive....

Laws by their nature tend toward biblical directness. They virtually all could be condensed to "Thou shalt not" and then add what is forbidden. Those laws and regulations are useless in my view. The old cliche reads that "When you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns".

There is no advantage to society by banning or criminalizing weapons. The only folks penalized are the law abiding citizens who must submit to fingerprinting, background checks, waiting periods and other official scrutiny in order to remain in compliance to the law. Yet, Billy the Banger can simply pick up an assault rifle or cut down shotgun on the dark side of the street. Who has the advantage now?

I honestly think that if everyone were free to be armed in public that crime would decrease over the long term. But, it won't happen. We are too entrenched in the mentality that regulation and bans are either good or a nessessary evil. Until the citizenry shout "enough", loud enough to drown out the anti-gun advocates nothing will change. We cannot allow the specter of Va Tech or NASA to take away the right to bear arms out of fear.

I also recommend this Commentary by Robert Pratt of Pratt on Texas. Look beyond the labels and concentrate on the facts and the advocation of your right (and obligation) to protect yourself, your family, your friends and neighbors, your property, and if needed..... your way of life.

Professor Liviu Librescu at Virginia Tech died heroically, holding the door closed so students could escape via the window. He likely knew that he would die. That kind of heroism must be honored no less than any exploits by our servicemen and women in the field. Imagine if he or his students had been armed. It's possible that we could applaud his heroism without offering condolences to his widow.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

After the long break

Wow what a week. My daughter and her husband came to visit and are still here. Both are also Marines and my son-in-law just returned from Iraq safely. As to news and scandals, there really isn't that much to tell.

Imus was canned because while rappers can say "nigger", "nappy", and "ho", white radio jocks cannot. And the rappers make more money. I guess that the last is why Sharpton and Company don't take on the gangsta gurus.

What I am really curious about is why Rosie hasn't been fired. I mean, while O'Reilly isn't my favorite talking head, he has a valid point. Rosies words are far more inflammatory and potentially harmful than Imus. Must be the sponsors.

Speaking of talking heads; Has anyone listened to Lynn Samuels? The woman is a shrieking shrew who fits the flaming liberal stereotype to a (capital) "T". She makes Rush and Hannity et al seem tame in comparison.

Personally I could care less about the comments and whether they keep or lose thier jobs. After all, it just makes fodder for the media to focus on instead of substance. The Jerry Springer crowd loves it I'm sure.

But with all the scandal surrounding them, the AG firings still won't go away. The summons will be issued soon. And to think it all could have gone away if no one had lied. Instead a simple "Because I can" from the President would have relegated it to the footnote category.

Tax day is here. Have you bowed before the IRS and paid homage? Or did you over-homage thru the year and now will be blessed with a refund of your own money without interest? I love taxes (not) and how the double standard is applied. My question about all this is fairly simple. If it is wrong to discriminate based on age, gender, religion, skin color, etc...... Why is income discrimination OK?

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Talking Heads Friday

It's been a fairly dull week if you are big on the blood sport of politics. So, the best thing I can think of to do is compare the talking heads and see if anything worthy of your average American is in there.

All week Sean Hannity seemed to be big on the "biggest tax increase in history". He told us it was double the big raise in the Clinton years. The Heritage foundation seems to confirm it. But, all spinning aside, the Democrats didn't raise taxes. They simply failed to renew a series of tax breaks. Here's the reality check: The McUSA's can expect to pay an additional $3000.00 (give or take about 500.00 depending on which media outlet you believe) this year. Call it whatever you want, but it looks like I get to put off buying the state of the art table saw for another year. And it still doesn't look like the Fairtax will get a fair shot this year either.

While Andrew Wilkow took Al Gore to task without calling him out by name. He kept saying that "Liberals" would tell you basically to do as they say but not as they do. Edwards huge estate and Al Gores jet setting came to mind. The only reality here is that Wilkow had an off week and was mostly ranting. I like his show since he just recently hit the national airwaves via Sirius. He's usually more level headed and rational. Guess it was an off week as he anticipated the Easter Bunnies arrival.

Spenser Hughs had an interesting rant wherein he took John Edwards to task for latching onto his wife's cancer for political gain. Basically he said that if you went to Edwards site, you were invited to send a note of support to his wife. Then, with your email address in hand, you get a note asking for donations to the campaign for President. I couldn't believe anyone (even a combination lawyer/politician) would be that low. So I went there. And sure enough there is a place to send a message to them. There is a form for your name, city, state, email, etc. There is also a checkbox to opt in for more campaign related emails. I left a note of support for her fight and did not check the box.

Rush did alot on Global Warming. Honestly I am not a climatologist. So, I am not qualified to judge the "evidence" each side purports to have that will prove thier case. Instead I would prefer to assume it is happening until it is proven otherwise. That means that we should take care of the mudball all the McUSA's live on. IF we are in the throes of GW then perhaps we can slow or stop it. If not, then what have we lost?

Next time we will look at the "left wing" talking heads and see how they spin. As of the end of this entry, I didn't get a request for funds from our friend Edwards.

Edited on Saturday the 7th to include: Well I got the email from the John Edwards Campaign.

Here it is:

Dear Phillip,

Thank you very much for sending a note to Elizabeth. I can't tell you how much the outpouring of kind sentiments means to her.

She's working on responding to all the correspondence but, in the mean time, she wanted you to know that she just had a great few days on the road in Iowa and New Hampshire with John, Cate, Jack, and Emma Claire.

If you would like to continue to receive e-mails from the John Edwards campaign with other opportunities to get involved, please click the link below to sign up for our general campaign mailing list.

Thanks again for your kind words and support.


Jonathan Prince
Deputy Campaign Manager
John Edwards For President

How You Can Take Action

(in this space is the buttons labeled Join the campaign, make a donation, spread the word)

I find this to be a violation of good taste. My note to Mrs. Edwards was simply that she and others were in our prayers. Nothing was said about Mr. Edwards political aspirations. Technically Mr. Hughes was correct, but it was slightly inflated.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Week In Review (Sorta)

It's been about a week since I had time to post anything. Long hours at work (job security is great), and long hours at home fixing up the hacienda (home ownership is awesome)and little time to peruse the news. So this commentary is going to be a bit of week in review. We need to discuss taxation, corruption, and confrontation.

First up is taxation. According to a huge number of Internet news sites the Congress is raising taxes to an all time high. Truthfully the reality is that the so-called Bush tax cuts are expiring. But, pols of all stripes will spin it the best they know how. The bottom line is that a lot of folks are going to be paying more in taxes than they do now. Or, they will be paying tax professionals more to keep the tax bill lower.

In my opinion, taxation is worse on the McUSA family than the Patriot Act Link. Why is that? Simple, the IRS has a far longer history than the PAct of abusing people. The tax code is convoluted to the extreme. Every year it gets more byzantine. It is time to change taxes to simple system that is fair. So, using the Texas model, we should be on a national sales tax and a national property tax. Currently in legislation is the national sales tax. Hat tip to Sanity Clause at Polyrap for suggesting the NPT many times over the course of lots of threads dealing with taxation. The bottom line is that every single person in the USA needs to support the USA financially in a (pardon the pun) fair and balanced manner.

I wish that we had a truth machine to detect corruption by our elected officials. It doesn't matter whether it is left/right, lib/con, RNC/DNC, or Dick/Jane. I believe every pol is corrupt. It may be the nature of the job, but that should change. The members of Congress have a way to get it right in time for 08. It will mean purging the system of obviously corrupt folks. The latest one I've heard about is that Diane Feinstein has been involved in various deals that might not survive an unbiased scrutiny going back several years. We managed to get rid of Foley and Delay. Now we need to remove Jefferson and look at the Feinstein/Pelosi angle where the husbands of each use thier wives influence to make money.

I include the British Sailors and Marines in my thoughts and prayers. Iran is playing a dangerous game of chicken by seizing them. Lucky for all concerned I have no influence in the solution. I'd have already initiated punitive strikes against Iranian military bases and infrastructure. The message would be biblical in nature, "Let my people go". IF that didn't work the next series of strikes would be on the Iranian infrastructure (road nets, airports, power generation sites etc) in general. I have to commend the Brits for the restraint shown, but must caution them on waiting too long. The longer they wait, the weaker they look. Just ask Jimmy Carter.

Other confrontations include the Congress and the President in the ongoing partisan infighting. I started this blog intending to support the Democrats since they were the power. Since I am independent I don't feel a need to support anyone at all. So, I can be a Bush supporter because he is the President, and a Congress supporter all at once. But all I am seeing is the same ol same ol. The current bill to fund the troops includes pork and a time line for withdrawal. Essentially the Congress is trying to become the Commanders in Chief. I for one would respect them more if there were three separate bills. Straightforward opposition can be honorable. But, this bill is disingenuous and an obvious political ploy that helps no one who actually needs it.

Finally, in a reality based world Bush should outright fire the AG for incompetence and tell Congress to get to work and quit trying to run the oval office.

The President’s Weekly Radio Address 3/31/07
In Congress, Spring Break Is Tagged as 'Spring Broke'
An obviously partisan article with linkage about Feinstein.
An older article about DF and China. Pre-2000