Friday, October 31, 2008

Most Presidents Ignore the Constitution

In an opinion piece in the Wednesday, 29 October 2008 WSJ, Andrew Napoliano wrote an inspiring piece on how most presidents ignore the constitution (text on Drudge Retort).

Most presidents, and most congresses, have taken this stance. They view the constitution more as a good document in its time. Our history is ripe with examples of how actions, legislation and financial manipulation have no basis in the constitution.
Beginning with John Adams, and proceeding to Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson and George W. Bush, Congress has enacted and the president has signed laws that criminalized political speech, suspended habeas corpus, compelled support for war, forbade freedom of contract, allowed the government to spy on Americans without a search warrant, and used taxpayer dollars to shore up failing private banks.

In virtually every generation and during virtually every presidency (Jefferson, Jackson and Cleveland are exceptions that come to mind) the popular branches of government have expanded their power. The air you breathe, the water you drink, the size of your toilet tank, the water pressure in your shower, the words you can speak under oath and in private, how your physician treats your illness, what your children study in grade school, how fast you can drive your car, and what you can drink before you drive it are all regulated by federal law. Congress has enacted over 4,000 federal crimes and written or authorized over one million pages of laws and regulations. Worse, we are expected by law to understand all of it.

The truth is that the Constitution grants Congress 17 specific (or "delegated") powers. And it commands in the Ninth and 10th Amendments that the powers not articulated and thus not delegated by the Constitution to Congress be reserved to the states and the people.

What's more, Congress can only use its delegated powers to legislate for the general welfare, meaning it cannot spend tax dollars on individuals or selected entities, but only for all of us. That is, it must spend in such a manner -- a post office, a military installation, a courthouse, for example -- that directly enhances everyone's welfare within the 17 delegated areas of congressional authority.

And Congress cannot deny the equal protection of the laws. Thus, it must treat similarly situated persons or entities in a similar manner. It cannot write laws that favor its political friends and burden its political enemies.
Bush and his administration have blood all over their hands. Too many of our politicians including Obama and McCain have gone along with it. Even many Republicans and so-called conservatives felt that the government needed to offer some kind of assistance.

Why any conservative would trust the government to do the right thing is beyond me. Now, the federal government always does the wrong thing. This $700B (plus $150B in pork) bailout violates the principle of equal protection, focusing exclusively on private, good 'ol boy welfare.

The U.S. Constitution was inspired by God. It does not need to pushed aside or considered "not applicable for out time." If changes need to be made, there is a provision to accomplish this.

As a member of the LDS Church, we know that the scriptures and living prophets will never lead us astray. As a basis for excellent government, the U.S. Constitution will never lead us astray if we adhere to is core meaning. The notion that is inapplicable for many of our modern issues is democratic apostasy.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Confidentiality, Integrity and Authentication

In the world of information security, there is a three acronym core to the premise: CIA (Confidentiality, Integrity and Authentication). This same three letter acronym is applicable to voting.

In security, there is need to address the confidentiality of the data -- be it static or in transit. This is typically accomplished by cryptography. Likewise, ensuring the data being accessed is accurate -- has not been changed in route or within a data file -- is accomplished by cryptography. Identifying who or which application can access the data store, and what authority the entity has once access is granted, is critical to the balanced CIA equation.

In voting, not only should the vote be recorded and counted as the voter intended, it is essential that the integrity of the vote, the authenticity vote and access to the polls be assured.

Elections are rarely done with security in mind. Even a political novice knows about the "vote early and vote often" ways of Chicago politics. In the lead-up to this year's election, we have voter fraud galore. The problem we find ourselves in today is that the political parties are only interested in the fraud that suits them.

The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) have been caught in over a dozen states for filing fictitious voter registrations. Democrats do not care. They do not think hearings are required. Even if they did, they claim it is too close to the election to bother at this time.

Democrats want to make sure every voter has access to the polls. Few would disagree with this. However, according to the law, everyone does not have a right to vote. Felons are not allowed to vote. Non-citizens are not allowed to vote. Dead people are not allowed to vote. Fictitious entities are not allowed to vote. Many Democrats think they should. Those in power will not acknowledge this because they are the beneficiaries of the fraud.

Congress put the voter fraud statutes on the books, and [the Department of] Justice is obliged to enforce them.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Not a Wasted Vote

A wasted vote is a vote for someone you don't agree with -- that does not represent my beliefs and principles.

For years I have voted Republican. I'd have to go back to my days as a college undergrad where I may have voted for a Utah Democrat (nothing like the Democrats of today). I voted for GW Bush twice. That really worked out [sic]. However given the alternatives of Gore and Kerry, the options were not all that alluring.

I voted for Bob Dole, GHW Bush twice, Reagan twice (1980 was the first presidential election I could vote).

For the past three elections and probably all the future presidential elections in the US, it will be a choice between the lessor of two evils. I cannot stand McCain. I agree with about half his stated policies but I am convinced that if he wins the election, he'll lean more to the left than to the right. The two issues that are in his favor are his stance on gun control and on Supreme Court justices. In just about every other item he fails the conservative litmus test. He will cave and be another Bush.

Obama is down right scary. His campaign promises are either unrealistic or as far left as they could possibly be. If he wins and the Democrats increase their majority in Congress, the changes he will make will forever shape our future in a very negative way. The Obama future is higher taxes, larger and more government social programs, and freedom-limiting "rights." The distribution of wealth and the limitations on the America dream will come home to roost.

Both McCain and Obama could care less about our Constitution. It started with FDR and has gone downhill ever since. All of our administrations have continued to promote the notion that the "Constitution is just a piece of paper that served its purpose but we are not beyond its 'shackles.'"

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result (Einstein, or Franklin, or anonymous.
Republicans and Democrats have been leading the country in the same basic direction: toward bigger and bigger government; more and more socialism, globalism, corporatism, and foreign interventionism; and the dismantling of constitutional liberties. Yet, voters continue to think that they are voting for "change" when they vote for a Republican or Democrat. This is truly insane!
In 2008 and from now on, I will vote for principle. I will vote for the candidate that best represents by beliefs and policies. I doubt I will ever vote for a Republican presidential candidate again. I will NEVER vote for a Democrat...EVER!

I will be voting for Chuck Baldwin, from the Constitution Party, this year. From a recent article by Mr Baldwin...
Vote for someone who is truly pro-life. Someone who would quickly secure our nation's borders, and end the invasion of our country by illegal aliens. Someone who would, on his first day in office, release Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean and fire U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton. Someone who would immediately, upon assuming office, begin leading the charge to dismantle the Federal Reserve, overturn the 16th Amendment, expunge the IRS, and return America to sound money principles. Someone who would get the US out of the UN. Someone who would stop spending billions and trillions of dollars for foreign aid. Someone who would prosecute the Wall Street bankers who defrauded the American people out of billions of dollars. Someone who would work to repeal NAFTA, CAFTA, GATT, the WTO, and stop the NAFTA superhighway. Someone who would say a resounding "No" to the New World Order. Someone who would stop using our brave men and women in uniform as global cops for the United Nations. Someone who would stop America's global adventurism and interventionism. Someone who would steadfastly support and defend the right of the people to keep and bear arms.
These are the principles I want our government to embrace. Today I vote in Utah's early voting.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Credit Crisis and Global Warming

You have to admit you have thought about this: with the governments the world over bailing out banks and tying its money up into long-term insurance policies, their ability to pay for global warming measures is doubtful.

Does it make sense for federal governments to mandate expensive green-house emissions controls, taxes on fossil fuel consumption, or to implement a painfully expensive and fraudulent cap-and-trade energy usage system?

According to the 10/16/08 article in the WSJ by S. Power and L. Abboud (pg A11), UN, European and American bureaucrats and legislatures feel it is a difficult issue to address during these difficult financial times.

You can bank on the fact that any fees associated with cap-and-trade pollution permits would go to bigger government programs, diverted to the latest catastrophe or disaster.

Apparently the so-called global warming problem is only an important issue if we can afford it. As if a group of multi-trillion dollar government programs are really going to make a difference.

The fact that the bureaucrats and environmentalists are questioning their timing on this issue clearly demonstrates how false their claims are.

I thought global warming had to be addressed immediately at all costs or global disaster was inevitable and that all coastal area would be underwater?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Congressional Limited Powers Trumped in 19030s

From Section 8 of the Constitution...
The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States
Until FDR's time, "the Supreme Court limited government's action that could affect private markets, applying various constitutional provisions to block minimum wage laws, workplace regulation and, to Roosevelt's fury, much of his New Deal program." (Legal Path for Intervention Was Blazed in FDR's Time, Jess Bravin, WSJ, A4, 10/15/08).

At the time, there was an attempt by FDR to prop up farm prices. Roosevelt and his cronies said that this would cause disaster for states. FDR took his campaign to trump the Supreme Court's 150 year old non-intervention stance to the American people. He claimed that the Court was acting as a policy making body, not judicial. He threatened to expand the Court beyond its nine members. Shortly thereafter, actions by the Court, led by Justice Owen Roberts, issued in the modern era of constitution law. "Ever since, the court has almost never found a constitutional bar on government intervention in the marketplace."

With today's federal government intervention into a particular industry -- the banking and financing industry -- there is solid constitution rationale for the Court to reject the bailout plan.

The bailout plan gives "unconstitutional delegation of congressional authority to autonomous officials." The Treasury and Federal Reserve can spend money as they see fit.

The New Deal was the beginning of the socialism-ization of America, furthered by almost every administration ever since. The Democrats have taken a great role but the Republican have done nothing to thwart it, if not being complacent in it. Bush is doing his best FDR in claiming doing nothing would be much worse than implementing this open ended, unconstitutional delegation of authority.

Justice Clarence Thomas has "argued that the precedent should be rolled back [that] the 'wrong turn' was the Court's dramatic departure in the 1930s from a century and a half of precedent."

The current bailout 'plan' is not only unconstitutional but it furthers a failed ideology, socialism and its cousin communism, which are quickly defining the new America.

I don't want to be like the Europeans. Americans are made up of ex-Europeans who left those repressive and average-at-best societies. Just because a European does not like American ways and thinks we should take more government control, does not mean it is right. I think they are wrong. A good litmus test is to do the opposite of what the Europeans prefer. In more cases than not, you'll be right.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Bailout Now Equals Federal Banks

Is it truly in our best interest to own preferred equity stakes in eight different banks / Wall Street firms? The American taxpayer will be proud owners of $25B in preferred stock in Bank of America (including Merrill Lynch and WaMU), J.P. Morgan and Citigroup; between $20-25B in Wells Fargo; $10B in Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley; $3B in Bank of New York Mellon; and about $2B in State Street?

Also announced was a fee-based new debt guarantees called senior unsecured debt issued by banks and thrifts (a supposed three year program). Regulators hope that this will remove the fear among financial institutions that it is unsafe to lend to each other even for periods of a few days; hoping to see the Libor rate decrease.
The FDIC is also temporarily offering banks unlimited deposit insurance for non-interest bearing bank accounts typically used by small businesses, through 2009. This would be voluntary for banks, and would extend the $250,000 per depositor limit lawmakers agreed on two weeks ago. To use these new powers, the FDIC is invoking a "systemic risk" clause in federal banking law that allows it to take extreme steps to prevent shocks to the economy.
President Bush claims it is "not intended to take over the free market but to preserve it."
"Government owning a stake in any private U.S. company is objectionable to most Americans -- me included," Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said in announcing the initiative. "Yet the alternative of leaving businesses and consumers without access to financing is totally unacceptable."
Sounds like snake oil to me. What the government takes, they take forever -- tightening the socialist noose. Yesterday's 900+ point DOW rise was one sliver of hope certainly, but today it when up and down ending slight down after profit taking actions.

Many, including me, feel the markets will return, but I am beginning to question this misguided hope. I have followed a plan of building a well-diversified portfolio; re-balancing annually; investing regularly. That philosophy must certainly be re-evaluated.

The current federal position relative to the government possibly assuming partial ownership of the banks is another major “inroad” Marx would recognize as a “means of entirely revolutionizing” our economy.
Ultimately, the money power seeks for and lusts after political power. Karl Marx, the godfather of modern statist ideologies, who lived on the generosity of other wealthy individuals so that he could articulate ways for them to destroy the middle class, outlined ten basic steps for wresting property away from the petty bourgeoisie.

The process in the United States has been gradual when it comes to building total power in the state. With this latest economic crisis, the steps are more bold – the bigger the assumed crises, the bigger the steps they can take to build power.

Business Week's cover depicting Bernanke as some kind of “Reluctant Revolutionary” is deceitful. Bernanke, Paulson, and their corporate socialist allies are pushing forward at a sprinters’ pace.

Monday, October 13, 2008

2008 Election Similarity to 1932

Herbert Hoover certainly had his problems in his one and only term as the 31st President. Although not a laissez-faire and do-nothing politician, he tended to favor volunteerism and 'rugged individualism' as opposed to legislative mandates. However, the massive stock market crash of 1929 and an unemployment rate near 25 percent by 1932 was just too great. His too little, too late federal programs buried him for the election of 1932.

In a roundabout way, McCain, as a Republican running on Bush's coattail (despite his want-to-be-maverick image), is Herbert Hoover. Obama is a want-to-be FDR.

FDR's New Deal was federalism run amok. 150 years of limited government was tossed aside in favor of massive federal government programs. FDR became the father of American socialism.

FDR won the election in 1932 by a landslide (22.8 million votes to Hoover's 15.7 million.)

It was interesting that what FDR said in his famous inaugural address
..."let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself--nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror, which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance"
...was nothing more than a get-out-of-the-way or get-on-board statement advancing the cause of socialism in America.

Twenty years later, LBJ came along and threw more fuel on the socialism fire with his Great Society's federal growth programs.

A few year later, along comes Ronald Reagan with his pro-American and "let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works" attitude. His strong defense, lower taxes, smaller government direction (conservatism) was accepted by the masses, a temporary set-back to the liberal socialists.

The election of 2008 will see another "step forward" for the socialists as the most liberal member of Congress will mostly likely win by a landslide. McCain does not care. He does not really want to win. He does not offer the masses a viable alternative. Not only is he a Hoover-like candidate, he nothing more than a token Bob Dole.

This election has always been the Democrats to lose. They have just nominated a person who does not feel right for the masses. The American people don't want to vote for Obama, but McCain is not strong enough to sway enough votes away from the "democratic incumbant."

The United Socialist States of America will have a new socialist leader shortly (Bush has just been a poser). Obama will preside over another massive New Deal firmly placing America on par with European mediocrity.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Sallie Mae - the Next Taxpayer Bailout

I teach part time at the University of Phoenix and ITT Technology Institute in the greater Salt Lake City area. I really enjoy the students and the learning process. My students could not be any more different.

The University of Phoenix students are working adults. They are very mature and respectable. They understand and seem to cherish higher learning. The papers I receive -- both individual and learning team papers -- are usually very well written, researched and documented. The student present their ideas well. They interact with me and each other in a professional manner. Many of them pay for their school through an employer tuition reimbursement program, especially the MBA students. However, many obtain student loans.

At ITT, almost every student pays for tuition via federal student loans; something like 80-90 percent of the students. These students are hands-on students. They like working with computers and doing "work" on the computer. They like to build networks, install operating systems, design programs; they do not like to write papers or do presentations.

One thing that I have learned from bankers and the students themselves, repayment is a concern.

ITT students will go in-debt around $80,000 for a BS; half that for an AS. I have had students that told me they took the loans and got reimbursed from work but spent the loaned money -- all of it -- gambling somewhere in Nevada.

The risk associated with loaning to students must be high. I am all for investing in education but there should be a clear method to do a risk assessment on each borrowing student, and make a business decision.

A banker I spoke with one day said the bank is forced to make students loans to people they know will not repay it. Its delinquency rates are extremely high.

I wonder how long it will be before Sallie Mae cannot cover its debt and will ask Washington for a bailout for the risky student loans that have gone bad?

Monday, October 06, 2008

Political Tendencies Have an Odor

I spent a long weekend in Denver with my two sons, a nephew, a brother-in-law, and a couple of his family members and a friend. We went up to Boulder for the Colorado-Texas football game.

Boulder drips with the stench of liberalism. One expects this in college towns -- young people doing this and that, finding themselves, nothing that needs to be conserved ... all that crap. But this was different. The whole town reeks of it.

At the stadium, most of the students were drunk. The girls could only be described as skanky. The adults -- alumni, faculty, etc -- weren't much better.

In the town center, the stores, restaurants, street "entertainers," the get-out-the-vote crowd, are all firmly in the liberal camp. They have their Obama retail stores and posters. I am sure if they would have know that I was of the conservative persuasion, they would have seated us last and in seats with splinters.

My boys sensed it to, and they are of that young mindset. They are wise enough to know what's appealing and what if not, at least to them. They clearly got a glimpse of liberalism. It is all pretend -- surface, feel-good non-sense. Liberalism is easy. It's that "if it feels good, do it" mentality. That attitude from the 60s -- the anti-establishment mantra.

I am sure there are some great people in Boulder. There are great people just about everywhere. I am just glad I don't live there among their haughty, liberal attitudes.

Likewise, they would not feel comfortable in northern Utah County. Being segregated like that suites me just fine. I have no plans of moving there; hopefully they will not move here. Agreeing to disagree is just fine with me.

Having traveled to all but two or three of our states and to over 25 country, I have an idea about government policy and how it impacts the lives of its citizens. America has become every bit as liberal as Europe. Whereas this social structure may work well for some; i.e., the Europeans, it is not to my liking. It was not the foundation of this great nation. The winds of change are not just blowing, we are in the midst of a storm. A calming is unlikely in the foreseeable future.

Because liberalism is easy and liberalism prays on ignorance, our educational system is turning out liberals at an enormous rate.

Regardless of who wins in November (I still feel Obama will win in a landslide because McCain is such a lousy candidate), the liberal agenda is marching forward. The Republican Party is no better. Its track record is clear on that. It is hard to see the appeal of that Party, given its members' actions and results. We all know what the Democrats stand for. However, when both Parties continue to move left, there is no sizable place for true conservatives and libertarians.

Despite the tens of thousands of people in Boulder, I fell very alone. That's the lot us conservatives find ourselves in. We can try to make a difference, but doing anything with the current structure is a losing proposition.

The notion that the Republicans must lose in order to win again, is based on a faulty premise. They do not offer a viable alternative. The small masses that care in conservative principles is shrinking. The bulk of that group will shortly draw the same conclusion. I pray I am wrong.

BTW, the Buffs stinks; the Longhorns annihilated them.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

451-page Bailout Behemoth & the USSA

The Senate's 451-page bailout behemoth, posted HERE from the the Senate Conservatives Fund, is a debt increasing, pork-laden pile of crap.

Consider some of the earmarks in the bill:

- Film and Television Productions (Sec. 502)
- Wooden Arrows designed for use by children (Sec. 503)
- 6 page package of earmarks for litigants in the 1989 Exxon Valdez incident, Alaska (Sec. 504)

Consider some of the tax earmark “extenders” in the bill:

- Smart electric meters (Section 306)
- Recycling deduction (Sec 307)
- Virgin Island and Puerto Rican Rum (Sec 308)
- American Samoa (Sec. 309)
- Mine Rescue Teams (Sec. 310)
- Mine Safety Equipment (Sec. 311)
- Domestic Production Activities in Puerto Rico (Sec. 312)
- Indian Tribes (Sec. 314, 315)
- Railroads (Sec. 316)
- Auto Racing Tracks (Sec. 317)
- Katrina Emergency Tax Relief Act extensions (Sec. 319)
- Computer contribution deductions (Sec. 321)
- District of Columbia (Sec. 322)
- Food contribution deductions (Sec. 323)
- Book contribution deductions (sec. 324)
- Wool Research (Sec. 325)

I have already told my two Utah senators that they will never get a vote or dime of my support for as long as I live. McCain, the very same dork that last Friday said he abhorred pork and if he were president would veto it, voted for this pile of dung.

Most ruin comes upon a nation little by little. This trend has been trumped. The assault on freedom is rampant. We have seen in a short week America become the United Socialist States of America (USSA).

I think "tomato tossing at hated politicians" might make a valid return as a cultural past-time. I've a stockpile for Hatch and Bennett waiting to be unloaded.

Senate Socialists Be Damned

The true republicans (small r) ... the Senators that voted NO on the unconstitutional Senate bailout bill.

Allard (R)
Barasso (R)
Brownback (R)
Bunning (R)
Cantwell (D)
Cochran (R)
Crapo (R)
DeMint (R)
Dole (R)
Dorgan (D)
Enzi (R)
Feingold (D)
Inhofe (R)
Johnson (D)
Landrieu (D)
Nelson (FL) (D)
Roberts (R)
Sanders (I)
Sessions (R)
Shelby (R)
Stabenow (D)
Tester (D)
Vitter (R)
Wicker (R)
Wyden (D)

Utah Senator's Hatch and Bennett will NEVER get my vote, support, money. They are both traitors in my eyes. They told their constituencies that they knew better.

All those socialist/communists that voted for the bailout, be damned.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Gerrard Nets #100

Steven Gerrard netted his 100th professional goal for Liverpool. Coupled with Irish national Robbie Keane's first goal in a Liverpool FC shirt and Dutch national Dirk Kuyt's early opener, Liverpool FC dominated PSV Eindhoven 3-1 at Anfield in UEFA Champions League group play.

Gerrard is my favorite footballer on my favorite team. I am pleased with their start in Champions League as well as their second place position in the Barclays Premier League It is a long tournament and season. I'm there with them all the way, good or bad.

The New Bush Doctrine: Socialism In the Name of Taxpayer Safety

With all of the bailout vote talk, Wachovia being acquired by Citigroup slipped to a sub-headline.

Citigroup paid only $2B for Wachovia but inherited its $312B mortgage portfolio including its share of risky loans. The government-engineered takeover capped Citgroup's mortgage loan losses at $42B, committing to absorb any losses beyond this. The government -- you and me -- received $12B worth of warrants for Citigroup stock and preferred shares.

Citgroup, along with Bank of America and J.P. Morgan Chase, have quickly become larger than most nations' GDPs. Together, the three have over 30% of all U.S. deposits (31.3% according to 9/30/09 WSJ article).

An investment firm, insurance company, mortgage holders and branch banks are now all or partial taxpayer properties.

The Bush doctrine can now be defined as the process of socializing key private businesses from key industries in the name of protecting the taxpayers.

Senate's Bailout Un-Constitutional

According to Article I (The Legislative Branch), Section 7 (Revenue Bills, Legislative Process, Presidential Veto) of the U.S. Constitution:
All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.
Today, the Senate is set to vote on a "revised" financial industry bailout bill. The House voted down the bailout bill on Monday.

The proposed bill, although similar to the House bill (adding some items totally unrelated to the core problem), is a new bill. This bill, if passed and if it is passed to the House for a vote, would be unconstitutional.

So despite what Harry Reid, Barack Obama and John McCain think, they had better stand down.

Is this potential prophecy fulfillment?:
You will see the constitution of the United States almost destroyed. It will hang like a thread. . . . A terrible revolution will take place in the land of America . . . [T]he land will be left without a Supreme Government, . . . [The Saints] will have gathered strength, sending out Elders to gather the honest in heart . . . to stand by the Constitution of the United States. . . . In these days . . . God will set up a Kingdom, never to be thrown down. . . .[T]he whole of America will be made the Zion of God. - Joseph Smith, Jr. (May, 6, 1843)
I don't know but it is clear what the Constitution says about where revenue bills must originate.