The Importance of Morality in Our System of Government

JBS CEO Art Thompson's weekly news video update for July 21 - 27, 2014.

Senate Dems Quietly Revive Radical UN Disabilities Treaty

Senate Democrats are reviving the radical UN Disabilities Treaty to grant oversight of U.S...

"Freedom Index": Rating Congress Based on the Constitution

Do you know how your U.S. representative and senators vote on key issues? Do you know if t...

Illegal Immigrant Surge: Unexpected — or Planned?

As our nation struggles to deal with an almost uncontrollable surge of illegal immigrants ...

Working Together to Rewrite the Constitution

The deceptive Left-Right coalition to rewrite the Constitution by means of an Article V co...

  • The Importance of Morality in Our System of Government

    Monday, July 21 2014 14:01

    Published in News

  • Senate Dems Quietly Revive Radical UN Disabilities Treaty

    Monday, July 21 2014 11:40

    Published in News

  • "Freedom Index": Rating Congress Based on the Constitution

    Thursday, July 17 2014 10:06

    Published in News

  • Illegal Immigrant Surge: Unexpected — or Planned?

    Tuesday, July 15 2014 16:25

    Published in News

  • Working Together to Rewrite the Constitution

    Thursday, May 29 2014 14:29

    Published in News - TNA

The John Birch Society
Contrary to the conventional wisdom, the Republican Party establishment—I refer to both politicians as well as the punditry class constituting the so-called “new” or “alternative media”—is not conservative.  It is neoconservative. Although this is not something of which readers of this site need to be informed, it is a point worth repeating nonetheless.   Few and far between are those neoconservatives who refer to themselves as such.  Usually, neoconservatives identify themselves as “conservative.”  But because the neoconservative’s is the face and voice of one of our two national political parties, his refusal to come to terms with his true identity means that in the popular American consciousness, the neoconservative ideology is confused with conservatism proper.  However, traditional or classical conservatism, the conservatism of which Edmund Burke is among the most notable and impassioned representatives, is not only distinct from neoconservatism; it is diametrically opposed to it.
While the ACLU worries about whether a Christmas decoration in the public library or a moment of silent prayer in school violates the First Amendment, other non-Christian nations have no trouble at all with combining religion and government. The notion that a “separation of church and state” is indispensable to civil liberty would have flabbergasted the Founding Fathers. In fact, when the Constitution was adopted, about half of the original states had a “state” religion. Eventually all of these states were disestablished (the “state” religion status was ended) but this had absolutely nothing to do with the First Amendment, whose clear words collectivists always seem unable to read:  “Congress shall make no law….” is how that amendment begins. Congress did not mean state legislatures.  
Last week, the Obama administration announced that it was in the process of preparing new gun safety measures. The announcement, which coincided with the six-month anniversary of the Tucson, Arizona, shooting, provoked criticism from pro-gun groups as yet another way for the government to infringe upon Second Amendment rights. The administration appears unmoved, and today is putting its words into effect, by way of executive order. The executive order will implement newer restrictions on the sale of weapons in states near the border, and will impose greater penalties on those who violate certain gun laws.  
It seems President Obama is beginning to alienate his support base. First, the labor unions voiced their anger toward the administration for what they perceived to be its failure to stand up for them. Now, one of the top "progressive" organizations in the nation, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, has issued a warning to the White House: If entitlements are cut, President Obama may not have their support in 2012. According to CNN, nearly 200,00 of the organization's 700,000 members have pledged to withhold their support for Obama’s 2012 campaign if his administration concedes on cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.
The U.S. House of Representatives is pushing legislation that would overturn a law that bans incandescent light bulbs and sets new energy-efficiency standards for the bulbs. Under President George W. Bush, a 2007 energy act was passed that requires efficiency upgrades in incandescent light bulbs, which have remained relatively unchanged since the invention of the light bulb in 1879. Republicans in the House contend that the law is a violation of personal freedom and are determined to overturn it. A vote on a bill to overturn the ban could come as early as today. The Blaze reports: Republicans say the new standards, signed into law by President George W. Bush, are a symbol of an overreaching federal government and people should have the right to buy the traditional, cheap and reliable incandescent bulbs. The Obama administration and environmentalists say new bulbs on the market will save American households billions of dollars in energy costs.
Once the awful job numbers announced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday were digested, it was clear that the clairvoyant economists looking into their crystal balls were dead wrong — again. Most economists were expecting a pickup from May, with job growth estimates ranging from 100,000 to 175,000, and an upward revision on the May numbers as well. Neither happened. A mere 18,000 jobs were created in June, and the May numbers were revised downward from 54,000 to 25,000. Economists tried to explain away the poor May numbers, blaming everything from the weather (too hot, too cold, too rainy, too windy) to the disruption caused by the tsunami in Japan. But with those excuses now counter-balanced by excellent weather, cessation of tornadoes, and the Japanese car makers coming back online, there weren’t any excuses this time.
In recent decades such a large portion of scientific research has been funded by governments, either directly or through government-funded universities, that most people can scarcely imagine a world in which research is paid for solely by the private sector. Today, however, researchers are feeling the pinch of government cutbacks and, according to the New York Times, are turning to the Internet to raise funds for their research — a task that, while daunting, also holds rewards for both researchers and donors. For example, biologists Jennifer Calkins and Jennifer Gee, seeking to travel to Mexico to study the elegant quail, set up a project on Kickstarter.com, a “crowd-funding” website. There they described their research project in detail and offered a variety of premiums to those pledging money for their project — everything from postcards to signed copies of the book based on the research, to outings with the researchers. The book, available for a donation of $35, proved to be the most popular premium. “It’s one thing to buy a book about quails,” Kickstarter community editor Cassie Marketos told the Times. “But to know that you played a small part in making it happen is a much different experience.”
Europe’s slow-motion economic collapse continues apace as Eurozone governments and banks continue to wring their hands over what to do to postpone the inevitable Greek default. And now there’s a new wrinkle: Italy, whose level of sovereign indebtedness relative to GDP is second only to that of Greece, has suddenly appeared on investors’ radar screens. If Italy — the second largest economy in the Eurozone — goes the way of Greece, Ireland, and Portugal, there will not be enough money in Europe’s rapidly-dwindling rescue fund (the European Financial Stability Facility or EFSF) to effect a bailout. The impasse over Greece is bad enough. Several countries in the European Union, including the Netherlands and Germany, expect private holders — large European banks — of Greek bonds to share some of the burden for the next Greek bailout, reckoned at some €110 billion. But European megabanks, given the precedents set with numerous recent taxpayer-funded bailouts on both sides of the Atlantic, are refusing to consider losing any of their own money. And all sides are finally awakening to the realization that a Greek default in the form of some kind of debt restructuring is inevitable. As Julian Toyer and Dan Flynn of Reuters report:
South Sudan formally declared independence from its former oppressor North Sudan over the weekend after decades of bloody conflicts, but the problems plaguing the two countries are far from being resolved. In a referendum on Southern independence held in January — widely criticized by communists, islamists and the ruling Sudanese dictatorship in Khartoum — almost 99 percent of voters in the South voted in favor of secession from the North. The election was the product of a 2005 agreement stemming from the most recent 20-year civil war.  
Once again, the Gawker.com has shown, if you work for the man who talked about hope and change, you can have a lot of hope you’ll get a lot of change: 146 of President Barack Obama’s 270 staff members received an average raise of eight percent for the 2010-11 year. Gawker correctly observes that Americans suffer while the Obama class of 2012 rakes in the money, every cent of it taken from those suffering American taxpayers. Obama plays golf; his leftist myrmidons get rich. Americans pay for it. But more disconcerting than the average eight-percent raise during a time when some Americans can’t get raises is this little fact: The top 20 White House employees received increases, on average, of nearly 50 percent. Some nearly doubled their salaries.
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