Whether leftist or rightist; Democrat, Republican, or Independent; “liberal,” “libertarian,” or “conservative,” anyone in search of a hearing in contemporary American politics is sure to express nothing less than unadulterated reverence for our country’s Founders. Doubtless, the old cliché that “actions speak louder than words” is not without its share of wisdom. At least as true, though, is another consideration that, in spite of the regularity with which experience has born it out, has of yet failed to achieve such universal recognition: Some words speak louder than others.
There is quite possibly no arena like that of politics to which this maxim more readily pertains. Neither, perhaps, is there anything quite as illustrative of both the maxim itself and its political application as the ubiquitous phenomenon of enlisting the Founders in the service of justifying every conceivable ideological cause.
However, once we go behind the scenes of political theater, what we discover is that this trans-partisan devotion to the Founding Fathers is not what it appears to be. More to the point, what we see is that either the devotion was deliberately contrived from the outset or, if not, it is something that immediately gives way under the pressure of just a little familiarity with basic logic. For the vast majority of political actors — i.e., our fellow countrymen and women — their reverence for the Founders is either insincere or groundless.
What does “separation of church and state” really mean? Many point out that the phrase is not found anywhere in the Constitution. Rather, it was mentioned by Thomas Jefferson, after the Constitution and the Bill of Rights were adopted. Others note that at the time the Constitution was adopted, about half the states had established state churches and that, although these states on their own ultimately disestablished these churches (ended official state religion), the federal government and federal courts were not involved in this process at all.
The 14th Amendment, not the 1st Amendment, is technically at issue when anyone raises the issue of separating state government operations from religion. Based upon the “Incorporation” principle, after the Civil War and the Reconstruction era, the Supreme Court gradually found various parts of the Bill of Rights to then apply to state governments because the “due process of law” section of the 14th Amendment was deemed to also implicitly include the federal Bill of Rights.
Each state had already incorporated into its own constitution a bill of rights, and often these state constitutional rights were more robust than were the federal Bill of Rights.
Representative Ron Paul suggested before the National Press Club October 5 that President Obama's assassination program of alleged terrorists could grow into an assassination program for journalists who disagree with the federal government.
"Can you imagine being put on a list because you're a threat?" the GOP presidential contender asked. "What's going to happen when they come to the media? What if the media becomes a threat? Or a professor becomes a threat? Someday that could well happen. This is the way it works. It's incrementalism.... It's slipping and sliding, let me tell you." Paul's remarks were a reaction to a September 30 drone strike in Yemen authorized by President Obama which targeted and killed two American citizens, one of whom — Anwar al-Awlaki — had been on a presidential assassination list for more than a year.
Unlike Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, former Alaska Governor and vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin did not threaten to commit suicide to convince the nation's news media that she will not be a candidate for President in 2012. But she came about as close as anyone since William Sherman ("I will not accept if nominated and will not serve if elected.") to closing, locking and double-bolting the door against a bid for next year's Republican presidential nomination.
"After much prayer and serious consideration, I have decided that I will not be seeking the 2012 GOP nomination for president of the United States," Palin said in a statement she issued Wednesday.
"As always, my family comes first and obviously Todd and I put great consideration into family life before making this decision. When we serve, we devote ourselves to God, family and country. My decision maintains this order."
Republican presidential debates have been marked by sometimes awkward audience cheers, but former Obama administration official and U.S. Senate candidate frontrunner Elizabeth Warren got a really awkward and wild audience cheer in a Massachusetts Democratic Party primary debate when she declared that she'd use her government position to attack Wall Street. Warren stated, "Forbes magazine named Scott Brown 'Wall Street's favorite senator.' And I was thinking, that’s probably not an award I’m going to get.”
The audience erupted.
The remark was part of a broad-based attack on capitalism by Warren, who, when asked about the Occupy Wall Street protests, remarked,
The people on Wall Street broke this country, and they did it one lousy mortgage at a time. It happened more than three years ago, and there has still been no basic accountability and there has been no real effort to fix it. That's why I want to run for the United States Senate. That's what I want to do to change the system.
Again, the Lowell, Massachusetts, audience erupted with wild applause.
Now that Congress has extended the due date for the Postal Service’s $5.5 billion pension plan payment to November 18th, various proposals to modernize and “rightsize” the service have appeared. The most comprehensive is the Issa-Ross Postal Reform Act, which endeavors to allow the service the freedom to do what needs to be done to keep it operating as a quasi-government agency.
In an interview with the Heritage Foundation, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), a co-author of the Postal Reform Act, claimed that if these measures were instituted, the postal service could actually turn a profit of $2 to $3 billion every year, instead of losing $8 to $10 billion annually. By trimming its workforce, increasing its efficiency, and offering more revenue generating services, Issa said the postal service would become viable without any further need for government (i.e., taxpayer) bailouts.
Rep. Dennis Kucinich’s recent offering of his “National Emergency Employment Defense Act” (NEED Act) is designed to remove all money creation powers from the Fed to a newly established congressional agency, the Monetary Authority. According to Kucinich, the bill “would reassert congressional sovereignty and regain control of monetary policy from private banks [the Federal Reserve]” by placing that control into the hands of “a separate Monetary Authority made up of experts … responsible for managing monetary policy.” That Monetary Authority would advise the …
Treasury how much money is needed in the economy. Treasury [would advise] Congress how much recycled or new money is required to pay off debt (as it comes due) and supplement existing revenues to fund infrastructure renewal, grants and loans to state and local governments, education and other priorities, as appropriated by Congress.
From the actual language of the bill, it promises everything: to create full employment, to retire the national debt, to “stabilize” Social Security, to restore the authority of Congress to create and regulate money, to modernize and provide stability for the monetary system, and “for other public purposes.” In the body of the bill it reiterates that “the authority to create money is a sovereign power vested in the Congress under Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution,” and that the purpose of the act is as follows:
Bill Jasper interviews conservative writer Phil Giraldi at LPAC 2011.
On the issue of the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, Herman Cain is demonstrating just how presidential he is by performing one of the most time-honored candidate contortions — the flip flop.
After the May 5 GOP presidential debate in South Carolina, Bob Powell of AboveTopSecret.com asked Cain if he would consider it legal for President Obama to issue a kill order for Awlaki. Cain responded, "In his case, no, because he's an American citizen."
Cain continued: "If he's an American citizen, which is the big difference, then he should be charged, and he should be arrested and brought to justice.”
Cain also stated in the same interview, “He [Awlaki] should be charged. And since he’s an American citizen, he should be tried in our courts.”
Ron Paul's new bill would get the FDA out of the business of monitoring health testimonials.