(This came via TechPresident.)
Friday, November 30, 2007
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 7:25 PM
The Ron Paul Revolution is aching for a blimp. Even though its stated goal had been $350,000, it's raking in nearly half a million in donations.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:16 AM
Santa, who's thought to be capable of "harming" himself by not wearing a seat belt at 5 mph, feels the wrath of the Nanny State.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 6:11 AM
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:09 PM
Here's CNN treating Ron Paul decently by giving him a not-too-bad interview after the debate.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 1:19 PM
(Thanks to Lew for reporting this on his blog.)
P.S. The first deliberately-planted CNN question regarding the Council on Foreign Relations (a group to which all the candidates except Ron belong) was not a surprise to be honest. After all, the CFR is a pro-war, pro-Big Business, pro-empire lobbying group which secretly touts the Neo-Con line all the way.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:52 AM
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
From NBC's Lauren Appelbaum
Here are our counts for how long each candidate spoke during the first part of the debate
Romney -- 7:03, during 9 times
McCain -- 5:09, during 4 times
Giuliani -- 5:08, during 9 times
Thompson -- 4:38, during 4 times
Huckabee -- 4:14, during 5 times
Paul -- 3:27, during 4 times
Tancredo -- 2:20, during 4 times
Hunter -- 2:16, during 3 times
One note -- Huckabee did not get a chance to speak until 26 minutes into the debate, and Paul did not get his chance until more than a half hour into the debate.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:38 PM
Here's Ron Paul on TV with subtitles in Spanish.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:24 PM
Here's Ron interviewed on FOX and Friends.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 6:00 PM
Here's a snip of the New York Times' piece on the impending Rudy implosion:
City Said to Have Paid Bills as Giuliani Affair Began
By WILLIAM K. RASHBAUM
Late in his tenure as mayor of New York, Rudolph W. Giuliani billed tens of thousands of dollars in travel expenses to little-known city agencies as he was beginning an extramarital affair, a political Web site reported yesterday.
The report, on the Politico Web site, cited documents obtained under the New York State Freedom of Information Law. But it was unclear from those documents whether Mr. Giuliani allocated those travel costs, from 1999 through 2001, to obscure city offices in an attempt to conceal expenses associated with the relationship or for some accounting purpose.
The administration of Mr. Giuliani’s successor, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, said in 2002, several months after taking office, that the Giuliani administration had kept the budget for the mayor’s office artificially low by paying more than $5 million in salaries through other city agencies. The agencies to which Mr. Giuliani billed the travel expenses were outside the mayor’s office.
The New York mayor always travels with a security detail, and the expenses for the police detectives assigned to protect him are normally paid for by the Police Department when he travels on city business.
Asked about the travel expenses during the Republican presidential candidates’ debate last night, Mr. Giuliani denied any wrongdoing. 'I have nothing to do with the handling of their records,' he said. As far as he knew, he said, the records were handled appropriately.
One of Mr. Giuliani’s chief political advisers, Anthony V. Carbonetti, said earlier yesterday that any suggestion that the former mayor had sought to hide anything was 'nonsense.'
'As far as we are concerned, these are all legitimate expenses incurred by the N.Y.P.D. while performing their duty protecting the mayor,' Mr. Carbonetti said.
Mr. Carbonetti told reporters, 'There was no effort to hide anything — on the mayor’s part definitely because this is stuff he has never seen.'
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:50 PM
CNN, as much as it hates to admit it, is starting to acknowledge it. See the YouTube video clip above.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:02 AM
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Hysterical yet par for the course. Faux News is alerting its viewers: "Blogs: Beware of Bias." After all, you must rely only on "objective" bloggers and news sites, ya know, like Faux News.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:45 PM
According to the Detroit Free Press:
It would serve Republicans right if Michigan voters unhappy with this semi-election rocked the political establishment by delivering a primary victory to upstart GOP candidate Ron Paul. It would serve Democrats right if frustrated state voters put Michigan in the GOP column next fall for the first time in 20 years in a presidential race.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:29 PM
False News' Judge Andrew Napolitano and neocon John Gibson duke it out over neocon Bush's War on Terrorism, the state's gross violation of civil liberties, etc. Napolitano wins the argument hands down.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:17 PM
This is the Huckster giving a speech on immigration and the welfare state during his state's state of the state address.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:15 PM
A tax protestor is, in the eyes of a federal judge, an "economic terrorist," thus receives a large fine ($250,000) and five years in prison.
It's outrageous that a tax protestor would be seen as such, when the state is the true economic terrorist simply by taking his money by force (at the barrel of a gun, that is) and spending it anyway it wants. Nope, it's called public service.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:05 PM
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:59 PM
This YouTube says it all about Ron. GO RON PAUL!!!
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:57 PM
Oh, yes, the "fair-and-balanced" network we call False News has been outed as the lying piece of propagandistic garbage that is. It was caught red-handed for tweaking a story about Dennis Hof, the owner of the Bunny Ranch brothel in Nevada, contributing to Paul's campaign coffers.
This just shows the lack of journalistic integrity that is evident in the MSM today, not to mention the neocon kool-aid that the False News talking heads love to drink.
Reagan was called the "teflon candidate," but that honor rightfully goes to Ron Paul. His detractors can sling all the mud at him all they want, but it won't. Why? Because he has such great character. Ron is not only the most libertarian officeholder in congressional history, but he's also the most principled and the most honest and full of absolute integrity. That's what makes him so great and incredible at the same time. Not only that, he's full of goodness and respect, unlike the neocon slime who want to denigrate him in every possible way they can.
Because of the kind and gentle soul Ron is, the statists hate it, and that's what driving them up the wall.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:46 PM
It's a nice, interesting piece on him on the news site here, although the headline is tacky. But then again, some publicity is good publicity.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:23 PM
Monday, November 26, 2007
Ron Paul supporter Taco John, a.k.a. Issac Lopez, was interviewed by the War Street Journal, which turned its story on Paul into a hit piece on the Ron Paul Revolution as well as the campaign itself.
As Lopez explained it recently:
I got a PM the day after 11/5 from a reporter from the WSJ saying she wanted to talk with me about online campaigning. We connected, and when we spoke, she sounded very sympathetic, like she understood that there was a lot of unfairness in the media with how we are being treated. About halfway through the call, when Huckabee's name came up, she started to get a bit defensive and thus put me on the defense. I then had the feeling that this was going to be a smear peice.
Apparently she thought it was "extreme" for us to be going around and finding contact information for the reporters and public commentators who were out there painting a negative picture about Dr. Paul, and his chances to become president. So she used a post that I made trying to rally the troops to fight the slander to make all Ron Paul supporters look off their rockers.
In any case, I got a call this morning from Fox Business News. They want to have me in studio to discuss (supposedly) the phenomenon of online campaigning. It actually sounds legit, because they have me on opposite of Andrew Saeij of Tech President and PersonalDemocracy.com.
I expect to be going on to talk about the concept of a decentralized campaign and why no other candidate "gets it" when it comes to online campaigning. They assured me that this wasn't going to be a contentious peice, and that the host might play a little devil's advocate, but that I'm not going on to be smeared. So that probably tells me that I should expect to be smeared (cynic that I am).
Taco John then appeared on False News to talk about the reasons for the Ron Paul campaign's rise to national prominence. He even did a phenomenal job defending Paul and the entire Revolution on False News, and, at the same time, refused to let the host marginalize or misrepresent the campaign's devout supporters.
Taco John on Fox Business News Part 1:
Taco John on Fox Business News Part 2:
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:12 PM
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:02 PM
Someone in the Bush family should actually be waterboarded so they could report on it to George. I said, I didn't think he would do it, but I suggested Jenna be waterboarded and then she could talk about whether or not she thought it was torture.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:33 PM
The Iraqi government wants to buy our military bases and keep there on a permanent basis for their own protection. In return, they would offer promises of favoritism for our investments and the ongoing use of their military facilities.
Wouldn't our government be doing the same thing, to further its protectionistic and mercantile interests? Oh, wait a second! Ooops, it's already doing just that.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:01 PM
Thanks to the the members of the U.S. House of Repressors, a bill that, for all intents and purposes, shreds freedom of speech and grants the U.S. federal government more power to see libertarianism or any ideology as an "extreme belief system" has been voted on and passed in the House chamber. The bill is expected to be introduced in the Senate, and there are signs that it will indeed pass as well.
The bill, in a nutshell, declares that anyone who espouses a purist ideology of any kind will be stripped of his U.S. citizenship, tortured, and/or terminated, along with no rights to habeas corpus and the ability to appeal it before the Supreme Court. In essence, anyone with a radical point of view will be considered, in the eyes of the evil state, a "terrorist."
It goes without saying that this is largely directed at libertarians of all stripes, including, but not limited to, the following: paleolibertarians, left-libertarians, right-libertarians, anarcho-capitalists, minarchists, free marketeers, etc.
It is interesting to note that Ron Paul did not show up to vote on the measure, probably because he spent the day to concentrate on his campaign activities. However, it is a certainty that he would have voted NO if he had seen the bill in its entirety.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:41 AM
Walmart is being flooded with applicants at every new store.
The article in question states:
As the world's largest private employer, Wal-Mart is used to being greeted by large numbers of applicants almost every time it opens a new store.
But the 6,000-plus people who applied for jobs at the new Supercenter in Cleveland's Steelyard Commons took everyone, even Wal-Mart, by surprise.
'We had to recount [the applications] three times,' said Mia Masten, Wal-Mart's director of corporate affairs, Midwest division.
When thousands of people compete for a few hundred ordinary jobs, trend watchers say it's an indication not only of a less-than-stellar economy but also of a workforce short on marketable skills.
The huge number of applicants wouldn't have caught anyone's eye had these been skilled, high-paying jobs, the types of positions that thousands of people always seek.
But these were regular retail jobs with low-to-average wages and benefits, not the sort of positions typically in high demand. Target wouldn't disclose the number of people who applied to work at its Steelyard Commons store.
Cleveland.com's god-awful The Plain Dealer -- and the MSM -- just don't get it. These Marxist propagandists absurdly think that the applicants who are getting hired into the company and other retail chains like it are the victims of "capitalist exploitation." Yet they don't realize that the company which they waged war against is actually helping them, not hurting them. They also have no clue that the anti-free enteprise monsters like the AFL-CIO or even the United Food and Commercial Workers are just pilfering their wagings to further their own political agendas at the expense of the workers whom they claim they support.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:21 AM
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:42 AM
This video, which was posted on YouTube by the site's prominent Avaroth provides an introspective and highlighting look into Ron Paul's ideas on monetary policy. He even welcomed into the world the newest member of the Ron Paul movement last month while briefly putting his YouTubing on the side.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:12 AM
A British woman who was pregnant 10 years ago had aborted her unborn child to help save the environment.
A British woman who had an abortion 10 years ago and was later sterilized did so because she believes pregnancy is bad for the environment, the London Daily Mail reported Sunday.
Toni Vernelli, 35, hopes her actions would ensure her carbon footprint would be kept to a minimum, the Mail reported. The environmental advocate also sees having children as an egotistical act.
'Having children is selfish. It's all about maintaining your genetic line at the expense of the planet,' Vernelli told the Mail, adding she believes bringing new life into the world only adds to the problem.
Considering she has a "no-child" policy in effect, does this amount to an environmentalabortion?
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 7:11 AM
Sunday, November 25, 2007
And don't forget: while you're at it, check out Trevor Lyman, the man behind ThisNovember5th.com, Tea Party '07, and his newest project Ron Paul's Reading List. :)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:10 PM
The National Review's Ramesh Ponnuru opines on the recent Washington Post op-ed by Reason's Nick Gillespie and Dave Weigel who praised and lent their solidarity for and support to Ron Paul and libertarianism. In the piece, Ponnuru posits the notion that libertarianism has undergone a radical shift, largely thanks to Ron Paul and his devout supporters.
He's right to note this, considering that libertarianism, as Jacob "Bumper" Hornberger and Murray Rothbard once noted, is a political philosophy. Period, end of story. It is not a political movement, nor it was a cultural or lifestyle one as well. One does not have to be religious or anti-religious to be a part of this movement as well as the Ron Paul campaign. Nor does one have to be pro-bourgeoisie or anti-bourgeoisie to be involved as well.
In other words, people of all faiths, values, ideas, and background are welcome not only to be a part of the Ron Paul Revolution and the campaign, but also to be a part of the libertarian movement. It is a "Big Tent" movement all the way around.
So everyone, come to the Ron Paul Revolution and the campaign and the movement -- Catholics, Lutherans, Baptists, Wiccans, Druids, Gardnerian Wiccans, Celtic Wiccans, all Christians and Pagans, Unitarians, Buddhists, atheists, Mormons, Jews, Hindus, Muslims, Baha'i, agnostics, etc. -- come everyone!
If you're for economic liberty, constitutional government, free enterprise, personal responsibility, peace, tolerance, personal liberty, sound money, you're one of us. No religious test or anti-religious test is required to be a part of this growing grassroots movement.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 7:12 PM
Interestingly enough, here's Billary's pro-medical marijuana-esque, Clintonesque rejoinder:
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:23 PM
It turns out that Benito Ghouliani can't even draw large crowds at his rallies, given his "Kucinich-sized" one in New Hampshire.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 4:02 PM
The Huckster, the top neocon extraordinaire who's as pro-tax and pro-Big Government as they come, is the most prowar extremist who shows more of his true colors on the issues of foreign policy and the Middle East.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:13 PM
Chumpson blasts the False News Network for sandbagging him. (Of course, this is child's play compared to the potshots taken at Ron Paul by the GOP mouthpieces and talking heads on the vile network.)
(Goddess bless Lew for noting this on the LRC blog.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:42 PM
Seeing is believing, especially when you see this video. After you're done watching it, you'll see what I mean.
Just so everyone knows, be on the lookout for Ron Paul to appear on this upcoming Wednesday's CNN/YouTube Republican Debate. It's sure to thrust Ron into a higher level of recognition, popularity, and success. Please don't miss it!
(Thanks, Lew, for this.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:34 PM
The Huffington Post's Jason Linkins, who's an associate editor for the site, takes a swipe at the latest idea employing a blimp to promote Ron Paul.
Mr. Linkins can poke fun at the idea all he wants, but like all other Paul initiatives, it is bound to happen.
Here's an excerpt of his blather:
The Ron Paul campaign is gearing up to escalate its battle to destroy the U.S. Constitution in order to save it and to otherwise bugger our imaginations with rampaging insanity by taking the fight to the skies! Pictured, at right, is the Paulites latest atrocity: an artist's concept of what would be the Ron Paul Blimp! The Dread Zeppelin! La dirigible unintelligible! It will float from town to town, and, if the description the Paul supporter behind this idea is accurate, confuse the minds of men!
(Out of respect, Lew gets credit for this news leak.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:14 PM
A Los Angeles Obama grassroots organizer, who founded and ran ObamaLA.com and goes by the name of Marc Whittmore, has now come over to the good side to support Ron Paul.
(Thanks to Thomas Woods for his post on it.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:22 PM
The never-ending tale continues, as the Medical Industrial Complex and the police state organize to ensure that children are brought into Maryland's Prince George County courthouse like cattle for the purpose of coerced vaccinations.
(Lew threw this story on his blog today.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:05 AM
Benito Ghouliani, for all intents and purposes, is at it again. He's going to the mat of slamming Ron Paul again because of his shrinking numbers in New Hampshire, all the while Ron's numbers in the state are skyrocketing by leaps and bounds.
When Ghouliani took his political potshots at Ron in the second GOP debate in South Carolina, I was elated, because it was helping Ron's campaign and shooting Benito in the political foot. I couldn't help but cheer for Paul at the end of the day.
Now the attacks are becoming ugly and pathetic, not to mention on the personal side. We all know that just about anything that comes out of the statist stooge's mouth is untrue, and he'll continue doing that for his own political gain, but it doesn't matter. I'm still cheering it on.
Sooner or later, Benito will find out the truth that the other Neo-Cons have caught on by now: if you smear (or even libel) Ron Paul, it will come back on you. After all, it doesn't undermine Paul's campaign; it undermines yours.
Check out the price that Ghouliani and his shills end up having to pay for their slander of Ron and his devout supporters.
(Thanks to Lew as always.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:19 AM
An owner of a Nevada brothel has publicly declared his support for Ron Paul. The interesting thing about it is that he credits his friend MSNBC Tucker host and conservative pundit Tucker Carlson for his interest in the Texan congressman.
Take a gander at an excerpt of the article on this development:
Perhaps nothing better exemplifies the libertarian streak that runs through Nevada than the state's permissive policy on prostitution -- the ultimate expression of the live-and-let-live philosophy.
So, it should be no surprise that the presidential candidate with the purest libertarian bona fides picked up some X-rated support while campaigning in Reno last week.
To be more explicit, Nevada brothel owner Dennis Hof declared his support for Republican contender Ron Paul during Paul's campaign swing through the state.
The odd thing about it, however, is that it came about with the help of television news personality Tucker Carlson.
Carlson, who hosts the show 'Tucker' on MSNBC, is traveling with Paul for a magazine article he is writing.
'Dennis Hof is a good friend of mine, so when we got to Nevada, I decided to call him up and see if he wanted to come check this guy out,' Carlson said.
Paul spokesman Jeff Greenspan said Paul's campaign were surprised to see Carlson emerge from a limousine with Hof and two of his celebrity prostitutes to attend the morning's news conference at Lawlor Events Center.
Following the news conference, Hof said he was so impressed that he wanted to start raising money for Paul.
(Thanks to Wendy McElroy for posting this on Ifeminists.com.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:09 AM
It is terribly disgusting to see how low this diabolical, vile state has to go in order to coerce the incarcerated accused into admitting to a tax evasion charge. This heinous act is in the form of torture and abuse, which is what Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis has alleged against his jailers.
Francis contends that his captors refused to give him blankets and food and had him strapped to a chair for 48 hours during his short stay in the Grady County Law Enforcement Center in Oklahoma. Unsurprisingly, state prison officials are denying the incident in question, claiming that the prison guards never tied him to the chair and denied him food and blankets. They also note that Francis did have an extra blanket in his possession -- one that, according to them, he shouldn't have it in the first place -- and his transfer was delayed because his family discovered the schedule of his move (an act that they claim is a "potential security risk").
Adding insult to injury, a few years ago Francis was arrested in Florida and charged with filming topless underage girls, except that the charge had been found to be bogus. The gals who appeared in the videos apparently lied about their ages (claiming to be 18), and the states' goons tried to go after him on drug trafficking and child pornography charges. They were later thrown out because the judge ruled that the 200 hours of videotaped evidence and other key pieces of evidence didn't "support the allegations."
Of course, Francis and his company Mantra Films were, at one point, being accused of fraud and deceptive marketing practices by falsely advertising to consumers that they were only purchasing a video or DVD and shipped unordered videos and DVDs to their customers without their consent. The federal goons went after him via a court order, mandating that they pay back all the shipping fees "as consumer redress," pay a $500,000 civil pentalty fee, and be barred from a litany of activities addressed in a Justice Department filing on behalf of the Federal Trade Commission. I have no idea if the company actually did this, but the government shouldn't have gone after Mantra Films over the matter. If anything, the consumers could have taken the company to court and demand restitution from the company if they felt Francis snookered them into a deal to which they didn't agree in the first place. Nevertheless, the company was strong armed into agreeing to it, but the move empowered the state to do whatever it wanted, falsely in the name of consumer protection.
The fact that the federal and state goons have total control over our lives and prosecute and convict us on the slightest pretext, as well as charge us with tax evasion, sex offense, and other non-violent crimes, just shows that we are living under a tyrannical, totalitarian, and brutal regime. If it can happen to Joe Francis, it can happen to all and any one of us at any time.
While I personally don't like Joe Francis (the man is an arrogant jerk, not to mention an opportunist), the man has committed no crimes with regards to his tax evasion case. The fact that the state is claiming that he has robbed it of its right to the fruits of his labor that he earned is preposterous. It's the state that has stolen his money from him (as it has done to all of us); it's not the other way around.
The fact that many people opine that he's gotten what he's deserved in prison (in reference to the torture and abuse done to him by his criminal captors) shows that these individuals are sick and see the state as a deity to worship without question.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 6:47 AM
....and the people who buy them can't do the math.
(A gracious nod to ACN for its truthful reporting on the hybrid cars that do nothing to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and avert the so-called global warming crisis.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:53 AM
Here's more on the Real Rudy controversy, with this one video showing the radios that malfunctioned for the firefighters on 9/11, all thanks to Rudy "America's Mayor" Ghouliani.
(Note: some of the actors in the video also appeared in the IAFF video exposing Rudy as a fraud. Some new people who had ties to the NYPD and to the city were also interviewed.)
(Thanks to Jim Ostrowski for making this available for us bloggers.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:10 AM
Saturday, November 24, 2007
Neal Cavuto with Ron Paul Part 1:
Neal Cavuto with Ron Paul Part 2:
The Ron Paul Revolution is certainly affecting Fox News anchor Neal Cavuto. Just tonight Cavuto had Ron Paul on his show talking about his campaign on his Cavuto on Business show. (See videos in two parts above.)
While Cavuto wasn't necessarily supporting Ron and his campaign, he was much nicer to and more positive towards Ron on the air than some of the collectivistic Neo-Con yahoos by which Ron has been interviewed. At the start of the segment, Cavuto congratulates Ron for being listed as GQ Men of the Year in GQ Magazine. Ron said that he didn't know what to make of it, but he said that he was pleased with it.
Cavuto asked Ron some fair questions, right up until Cavuto started to go into it with Ron on foreign policy, the War on Terrorism, and Iraq.
The following exchange went like this:
CAVUTO: What would prompt a President Ron Paul to attack another country?"
Ron answered reluctantly, but did so anyway:
RON PAUL: Well, I would never attack another country if they haven't attacked us. 77 percent of the people now agree with me that we ought to come home, and therefore that's a very, very popular position.
Cavuto, interrupting Ron in mid-thought, then asks him:
CAVUTO: But is there any, any method, sir, to a preemptive strike against someone you know hates you and would probably want to do something to you?
RON PAUL: No, no, I mean, uh..there's
CAVUTO: (interrupts) So you would only react if acted upon?
RON PAUL: Or imminently so. But we never had this in our whole history where somebody was under imminent attack because the president has actually the authority to respond without going to the Congress if you were under attack or if there's an imminent attack.
CAVUTO: So, so on, on World War II, Congressman, would you have intervened then?
RON PAUL: Sure, I mean we were attacked, we went to the...you know, Roosevelt went to the Congress and they had a proper declaration of war. I argue, I argue..
CAVUTO: War included, as you know Congressman, Germany then saying, "We're at war with you now, United States." So it escalated, right?
RON PAUL: And they declared war against us, so...
CAVUTO: And you would react to that and declare war on them.
RON PAUL: Sure, if they declared war against us, this is different - they're going to attack us, you know? Uh, and actually, there was a lot of fighting and sinking of ships even before then.
RON PAUL: So, um, no, under the...I'm, I'm as concerned about the process and the rule of law as I am about the issue. They're both very important. But we go to war and we have been going to war since World War II without declarations, and we still have troops in, in Korea, and we lost in Vietnam. And this thing's going to go on for years and years and years. No Republican or Democrat offering a program other than myself of bringing them these troops home very soon and ending this war.
God bless Ron for his principled stand on the war, even despite some of the silly questioning coming from Fox News' own Neal Cavuto.
(Lew deserves great praise for bringing this to light on his blog.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:33 PM
A Texan subdivision and its local home owners association have issued a mandate that sex offenders are prohibited from renting or owning homes.
The problem here, of course, is that the subdivision, like it or not, can rightfully prohibit sex offenders from living in the community. It's a private property rights issue, not to mention a case of freedom of association. However, sex offenders have been convicted by the state for mostly non-violent sex crimes (usually with teenage females under the age of 18). While a good handful of them may be pedophiles, the lion's share of them are actually young adult males and older men who made foolish mistakes having sex with female minors, who have been infantilized by the state.
However, it goes without saying that the subdivision is, morally and ethically speaking, in the wrong for discriminating against sex offenders, who have, largely for the most part, made some mistakes. If anything, people who disagree with the subdivision and its discriminatory practice should be free to boycott them at all costs.
(Thanks to Wendy McElroy who, via her Ifeminists.com website, posted this link.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:18 PM
It's always so amusing to see the statist morons go at it while human liberty dies at an accelerated death. The latest comes from Chumpson who fires the latest volley of barbs at Ghouliani, saying that Mr. "America's Mayor" himself does not represent New York. Case in point: Chumpson slams the former mayor for consistenly supporting government gun control.
Even though I hesitate at the prospect of posting an excerpt of anything that False News says, I make an exception here because it is a valid story:
BRISTOL, N.H. — Fred Thompson said Friday while visiting a New Hampshire gun store that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani should stop bringing up the Big Apple on the campaign trail and criticized him for consistently supporting gun control legislation.
Thompson's popularity in early-voting New Hampshire has sunk rapidly in recent weeks, but his visit to Skip's Gun and Sport Shop to trumpet second-amendment rights could be geared toward libertarian-leaning primary voters in the state.
And the usually laid-back Thompson aimed his tough talk straight at the Republican frontrunner.
'(Giuliani) simply supported just about every gun control legislation that came down the pike. And I just disagree with him on that.... over the years and he's been very outspoken about it. Of course he's not outspoken about it anymore,' Thompson told reporters with a smile. 'It's a major differentiation. He relates everything to New York City ... Well, New York City is not emblematic of the rest of the country.
'And the sentiments of those people in the rest of the country are in support of the second amendment. This is where I've always been ... and I don't think he's ever been,' he said.
As much as I despise Chumpson and his neoconservativesque politics, he makes a salient point about Rudy. That, and the fact that Chumpson's campaign has been on the decline since the last couple of debates in which he appeared.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:01 PM
A Liberty Dollar and Ron Paul supporter posits a reason for the state's goons' recent raid on Liberty Services Inc.'s own Liberty Dollar in the op-ed section of the Lodi-News Sentinel. Why did the federal goons go after the company, he inquires? Because of two words: Ron Paul.
Here's a very small excerpt of the op-ed in question:
What is the reason for the raid by the FBI if the company had been operating lawfully for nearly 10 years?
Earlier this year the company began minting two new coins, the 2008 'Peace Dollar' with the words "STOP THE WAR" on the reverse side and the 2008 coin commemorating the presidential campaign of Ron Paul. The Feds just have to stop Representative Ron Paul somehow, since he is the only presidential candidate who is pro-liberty.
Thanks to Free Market News Network for a link to the paper's op-ed page.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:24 PM
Fire fighters in many major metropolitan cities are being recruited by the Empire to spy on their neighbors. The worst part of this is this: they don't even need a search warrant for their activities.
Here's the entire Yahoo article on this:
By EILEEN SULLIVAN, Associated Press Writer Fri Nov 23, 5:18 PM ET
WASHINGTON - Firefighters in major cities are being trained to take on a new role as lookouts for terrorism, raising concerns of eroding their standing as American icons and infringing on people's privacy.
Unlike police, firefighters and emergency medical personnel don't need warrants to access hundreds of thousands of homes and buildings each year, putting them in a position to spot behavior that could indicate terrorist activity or planning.
But there are fears that they could lose the faith of a skeptical public by becoming the eyes of the government, looking for suspicious items such as building blueprints or bomb-making manuals or materials.
Since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Americans have given up some of their privacy rights in an effort to prevent future strikes. The government monitors phone calls and e-mails; people who fly have their belongings searched before boarding and are limited in what they can carry; and some people have trouble traveling because their names are similar to those on terrorist watch lists.
The American Civil Liberties Union says using firefighters to gather intelligence is another step in that direction. Mike German, a former FBI agent who is now national security policy counsel to the ACLU, said the concept is dangerously close to the Bush administration's 2002 proposal to have workers with access to private homes — such as postal carriers and telephone repairmen — report suspicious behavior to the FBI.
'Americans universally abhorred that idea,' German said.
The Homeland Security Department is testing a program with the New York City fire department to share intelligence information so firefighters are better prepared when they respond to emergency calls. Homeland Security also trains the New York City fire service in how to identify material or behavior that may indicate terrorist activities. If it's successful, the government intends to expand the program to other major metropolitan areas.
As part of the program, which started last December, Homeland Security gave secret clearances to nine New York fire chiefs, according to reports obtained by The Associated Press.
'They're really doing technical inspections, and if perchance they find something like, you know, a bunch of RPG (rocket-propelled grenade) rounds in somebody's basement, I think it's a no-brainer,' said Jack Tomarchio, a senior official in Homeland Security's intelligence division. 'The police ought to know about that; the fire service ought to know about that; and potentially maybe somebody in the intelligence community should know about that.'
Even before the federal program began, New York firefighters and inspectors had been training to recognize materials and behavior the government identifies as 'signs of planning and support for terrorism.'
When going to private residences, for example, they are told to be alert for a person who is hostile, uncooperative or expressing hate or discontent with the United States; unusual chemicals or other materials that seem out of place; ammunition, firearms or weapons boxes; surveillance equipment; still and video cameras; night-vision goggles; maps, photos, blueprints; police manuals, training manuals, flight manuals; and little or no furniture other than a bed or mattress.
The trial program with Homeland Security opens a clear information-sharing channel — which did not exist before — between the fire service and Homeland Security's intelligence division.
'We're there to help people, and by discovering these type of events, we're helping people,' said New York City Fire Chief Salvatore Cassano. 'There are many things that firefighters do that other law enforcement or other agents aren't able to do.' He added, 'A normal person that doesn't have this training wouldn't be looking for it.'
Cassano would not discuss specifics, but he did say that some terrorism-related information has been passed along to law enforcement since firefighters and officers began the training three years ago. 'They've had some hits,' Cassano said. 'It's working.'
Separately, the fire services in Washington, D.C., Phoenix and Atlanta have also been receiving terrorism-related intelligence training. Los Angeles County provides intelligence training so firefighters and inspectors can spot dangerous chemicals or other materials that could be used in bombs. And the fire service is also represented in at least 13 state and regional intelligence "fusion" centers across the country — where local, state and federal agencies share information about terrorism and other crimes.
In Washington, the fire service made its first foray into the intelligence world about two years ago, and now D.C. Fire/EMS has access to the same terrorism-related intelligence as the police, said Larry Schultz, an assistant fire chief in charge of operations.
D.C. firefighters and EMS providers are in 170,000 homes and businesses each year on routine calls, Schultz said.
'So we see things and observe things that may be useful to law enforcement,' he said. 'We can walk into your house. We don't need a search warrant.' If an ambulance team shows up at a house and sees detailed maps of the District's public transit system on the wall, that's something the EMS provider would pass along, he said.
'It's the evolution of the fire service,' said Bob Khan, the fire chief in Phoenix, which has created an information-sharing arrangement between the fire service and law enforcement through terrorism liaison officers.
Because firefighters are on the front lines, the fire service needs to know about intelligence that could somehow affect what they do, said Gregory Cade, who as head of the U.S. Fire Administration is the nation's top fire chief.
If, for example, Washington is hosting an International Monetary Fund meeting where there will be a large group of protesters and a truckload of gasoline has been stolen in Baltimore, firefighters need to know about intelligence from overseas that terrorists are trying to make explosive devices out of gasoline, Schultz said.
'Getting appropriate, actionable intelligence is important for a fire chief in deciding what to do and how to allocate resources and to know what's going on,' Cade said. "No one is expecting us to be the analyst person who is sitting down, trying to connect all of this stuff together and determining, 'Oh, yes, this looks like a terrorist plot.' '
But Cade said that until recently, there's been no mechanism for fire departments to share what they learn with law enforcement and intelligence analysts who could use it.
'If in the conduct of doing their jobs they come across evidence of a crime, of course they should report that to the police,' said the ACLU's German. 'But you don't want them being intelligence agents.'
It's of particular concern for communities already under law enforcement scrutiny. 'Do we want them to fear the fire department as well as the police?' German asked.
The Detroit metropolitan area, which has one of the largest concentrations of Arab Americans in the country, does not conduct this type of intelligence training, nor does it plan to. 'That's a touchy area,' said Detroit's deputy fire commissioner, Seth Doyle. Detroit firefighters do receive training about hazardous materials, but not the details that New York and D.C. firefighters are now on the lookout for.
A structural diagram of the Ambassador Bridge, which links Detroit to Canada, materials and literature to make a bomb and a bomb prototype are things firefighters should pay attention to, Doyle said. But the bridge diagram by itself might not be enough. 'I don't want our folks to be put in a position where they're reporting something that creates a situation where there was really no real problem in the first place,' Doyle said.
Jeff Zack, a spokesman for the International Association of Fire Fighters, said the union does not know enough about the training programs to say whether it's a good idea for the country, but the union is concerned that the training be done properly and that this new development does not take away people's rights.
Advocates of the fire service's intelligence role say privacy will not be violated. Homeland Security said if its program with New York is expanded across the country, civil rights and civil liberties training would be included.
On the Net:
American Civil Liberties Union: http://www.aclu.org
Department of Homeland Security: http://www.dhs.gov
U.S. Fire Administration: http://www.usfa.dhs.gov
International Association of Fire Fighters: http://www.iaff.org
(Thanks to Lew for this posting on his blog.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:11 PM
A Santa was placed under arrested and accosted by the state's goon squad at a Circuit City store. What is the state's vile charge against him? He was "disturbing the peace."
AUGUSTA, Ga. - 'Let Santa go! Let Santa go,' That's what Circuit City shoppers at the Augusta Exchange were chanting when a local pastor, dressed as Santa Clause, was asked to leave.
Circuit City employees told their District manager, Kim Cavros, that customers in line complained to them, saying Santa was 'disturbing the peace.'
'There was a Santa Clause preaching the gospel out on the corner of the building,' said Cavros.
Wayne Adams was one of the shoppers who saw the guy dressed as Santa,'He never promoted his church...never promoted anything just the nice Christmas season.'
Whether Santa was preaching the gospel or promoting the Christmas season, Richmond County deputies were called and Santa was escorted off Circuit City property.
(Thanks to RRND for its coverage of this.)
On a side note, it was a shopper, not Circuit City, who called the state's goons.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:58 PM
An independent migrant rescues a boy and his mother in the Arizona desert.
Here's what the entire Yahoo! News article reports:
By TERRY TANG, Associated Press writer Fri Nov 23, 7:51 PM ET
PHOENIX - A 9-year-old boy looking for help after his mother crashed their van in the southern Arizona desert was rescued by a man entering the U.S. illegally, who stayed with him until help arrived the next day, an official said.
The 45-year-old woman, who eventually died while awaiting help, had been driving on a U.S. Forest Service road in a remote area just north of the Mexican border when she lost control of her van on a curve on Thanksgiving, Sheriff Tony Estrada said.
The van vaulted into a canyon and landed 300 feet from the road, he said. The woman, from Rimrock, north of Phoenix, survived the impact but was pinned inside, Estrada said.
Her son, unhurt but disoriented, crawled out to get help and was found about two hours later by Jesus Manuel Cordova, 26, of Magdalena de Kino in the northern Mexican state of Sonora. Unable to pull the mother out, he comforted the boy while they waited for help.
The woman died a short time later.
'He stayed with him, told him that everything was going to be all right,' Estrada said.
As temperatures dropped, he gave him a jacket, built a bonfire and stayed with him until about 8 a.m. Friday, when hunters passed by and called authorities, Estrada said. The boy was flown to University Medical Center in Tucson as a precaution but appeared unhurt.
Cordova was taken into custody by Border Patrol agents, who were the first to respond to the call for help. He had been trying to walk into the U.S. when he came across the boy.
The boy and his mother were in the area camping, Estrada said. The woman's husband, the boy's father, had died only two months ago. The names of the woman and her son were not being released until relatives were notified.
Cordova likely saved the boy, Estrada said, and his actions should remind people not to quickly characterize illegal immigrants as criminals.
'They do get demonized for a lot of reasons, and they do a lot of good. Obviously this is one example of what an individual can do,' he said.
So much for the Neo-Cons' claim that "illegals" are bringing in disease, raping and murdering Americans and eating their dogs, taking away our jobs, and trying to go on the welfare teat.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:47 PM
20,000 troops with serious brain injuries and who require lifetime care are deliberately unlisted by the Pentagon. This is the work of the pro-war collectivists who should donate their personal assets to this action.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:27 PM
"No army can stop an idea whose time has come."
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:16 PM
Bloomberg TV's Al Hunt sits down with Ron Paul on his presidential campaign plans, his fundraising activities, the next scheduled "money bomb," war and peace, spending, the federal deficit, taxes, abortion, and neoconservatives and all other cronies in the political arena.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:08 PM
Elizabeth Kucinich, wife of Democratic presidential runner Dennis Kucinich, says that her husband would absolutely consider running on a presidential-vice presidential ticket with Ron Paul. She even goes so far as to say that she has studied monetary policy and is coming onto his side on that issue.
The only troubling aspect of her interview is that she has come out in favor of re-opening the 9/11 investigation. While, as she correctly points out, there are still some unanswered questions about what happened on that day and a healthy dose of skepticism of the government's official story on that entire incident is warranted, it kinda, sorta gives credence to the 9/11 Truthers' claims that the attacks were carried out under the orders of the Bush regime and the destruction of Building 7 of the World Trade Towers was a controlled demolition. Of course, these charges are bogus, because there is no hard evidence that would officially transform their conspiracy theories into facts.
(Thanks to Lew for the link to the interview.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:43 PM
This latest excerpt of The Real Rudy documentary furnishes a stark, unfavorable portrait of Ghouliani's service as mayor of New York City on 9/11. Some of the people involved in the rescue efforts on that fateful day who appeared in this video are the same people who appeared in the International Association of Fire Fighters video which exposed Mr. "America's Mayor" as a fraud on that day.
(Kudos to Lew for this great video on his blog.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:22 PM
In the wonderful county of Volusia in Florida, you will need to be careful if you're carrying more than a couple hundred dollars in cash. When pulled over on I-95 even for a minor offense, Volusia County police are routinely asking drivers how much money they are carrying. What this has to do with speeding or a broken taillight I couldn't tell you. Apparently this is "suspicious behavior."
Under current law, suspicion is all they need to confiscate your property including valuables such as jewelry or even your car. Wow! Now even the police are car-jacking! I'm so proud of our boys in blue! Police car confiscation squads now operate in Louisiana, New Jersey, Alabama, Arizona, California, Texas, and many other states.
If you are pulled over and asked how much money you're carrying, I encourage you to say to the officer (if the cop is male), "I'll tell you if you let me know just how small your penis is!" Okay, that would be a really bad idea but you get my point.
This also old news (back in 1993)but worth mentioning again.
Posted by Silent Vampyre at 10:50 AM
There seems to be an increase of police just taking a camera from someone because, well because nobody is doing anything to protect our rights. I'm just going to give a couple links because they are very self-explanatory.
Here's one in New York.
Web cam is "espionage?" Way to go Ghouliani staff
Anyway, some of them are old news but google it. it's starting to be a trend i think.
One more step in our loss of freedom.
Posted by Silent Vampyre at 10:22 AM
Reason's Nick Gilespie and Dave Weigel wrote an outstanding Washington Post piece expressing their ardent solidarity and support for Ron Paul and libertarianism. It was a positive one, and, unlike the sneering attacks from a few "libertarian" bloggers in recent days, it provided an optimistic glimpse of the Ron Paul campaign and where libertarianism lies in the future.
I, like Max Raskin of LewRockwell.com's blog, take issue with their portrayal of Guy Fawkes, who was, by no means, an "anarchist." Seriously, he was a de facto British revolutionary who, with his fellow rebels, conspired to blow up a diabolical totalitarian regime -- a.k.a. England's Parliament -- and attempted to revive Catholicism in England. He and his fellow conspirators wanted to remove the Protestants from power by plotting to kill King James I. What Gillespie and Weigel also fail to note that he fought on behalf of the Spanish Hapburgs and adopted the name Guido (which is what he used to sign after being tortured just prior to his death).
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:30 AM
The War...ahem....Wall Street Journal goes out of its way to sandbag Ron Paul supporters in its online edition today. Amy Schatz, the young journalist who penned this piece, has no doubt shot herself in the journalistic foot.
Ms. Shatz, I realize that you need the job, and you probably think that you're never in the wrong, but come on now! You need a reality check for once.
Most people don't seem to understand that political candidates, for the most part, are judged primarily on their platform and record. Ron Paul is obviously no exception to the rule. However, the difference between him and the other top-tiered candidates (like Ghouliani, the Huckster, Chumpson, etc.) is that he has an unimpeachable and unquestionable Jeffersonian record. Can one say the same about the other contenders in the race?
(A thankful nod to James Ostrowski for his mention of this on LRC.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 8:14 AM
Police cars are starting not only to look more aggressive than ever, but they're also becoming that way more than ever. Chrysler's new Charger is one of the latest of many new cars that is sporting a more-aggressive, bland, boxy look. This latest line-up of the series is challenging Ford for its police clientèle, which happens to be depending on the automaker to produce gaudier, boxier, and more threatening vehicles than the previous incarnations of police cars that have been issued by every police department in the country.
This latest bit of news, conflated with the disturbing reports of totalitarian cops becoming far more abusive with their authority to the public and the exploding rise in police taser ruckuses, underscore a gravely disturbing trend in the law enforcement industry: the more military-esque and more menacing the police goon mobiles, the better.
The squad cars I have seen on the roads these days are more intimidating than ever. Most police departments, and I have noticed this personally, no longer want Crown Victorias or the old-hat, tacky, fuddy-duddy-looking, Elvis-looking mobiles that are still in use in many, if not most, precincts. They want the latest, colorful cars that appear bulky and "muscular" in nature. These toys are becoming more and more popular with police departments everywhere one goes.
As a matter of fact, in southeastern Michigan (which is where I reside), the law enforcement bureaucrats -- and the police precincts -- are employing taxpayer money to spend an enormous fortune on crap like flashy paint jobs and tacky decals, all of which have nothing to do with the police officers' supposed mission "to serve and protect." Furthermore, these precincts engage in completely useless competitions with one another, just to see which department has the best-looking graphics, as if all of that stuff really amounts to anything of value at the end of the day. Then they compete with the above-mentioned older vehicles by showcasing these new tougher cars. Truth be told, this is all for show, as it signifies power, coercion, and authoritarian intentions on their part.
The sad reality is that taxpayers unfortunately stand idly by and allow this collectivistic nonsense to happen. They don't even dare question these atrocities at all. In their minds' eye, where's the incentive to question them? That's exactly how they think. And while they're looking the other way, the police continue with their government-worshipping harassment escapades without so much of a protest from the acquiescing populace.
(Thanks to Karen DeCoster for her cross-posted blog on this matter on LRC and her own blog on her website.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 6:06 AM
Friday, November 23, 2007
While my mother, my father, and I were in their old '95 Ford Explorer heading out to my brother's house for dinner on Thanksgiving Day, my mother mentioned to me and my dad that she had seen on the news on TV about the experts on the networks (Clinton News Network, False News, etc.) who were "asking" the American people to "be sure to eat responsibly." I rolled my eyes, thinking that this is nothing more than Nanny State talking coming from the establishment talking heads who have nothing better to do than to nag people about their eating habits on Turkey Day.
When we got to my brother's house, my mother mentioned it to my brother, who (he's sort of a libertarian Republican) responded, "That's the government telling you that they know what's best for you." Then he said that they first started doing it to people by passing these drinking laws, then these seat belt laws in the state, etc. Now, he said, they want to tell you what you can and cannot eat.
My brother is right. The government has gotten out of control. My mother, who is a big defender of the state, will support anything the state does. However, imagine her change in attitude if the state came after her. Then she'll realize that I was right about the state all along.
Remember, these are the same knuckleheads who have, many times in the past, told us to "drink responsibly." What's next? "Breathe responsibly"? "Walk responsibly"? "Sit responsibly"?
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 9:42 PM
Tons of Black Friday shoppers flocked to the stores and malls for Christmas gifts today.
I'm not much of a Black Friday fan, and I'm not into buying a lot of Christmas gifts, but I don't have anything personal against it. The only thing that turns me off about it is the infantile fighting that occurs between customers at the shopping aisles.
If I were to do any Christmas shopping, I'd prefer to do it online, where you don't have to put up with the hassle of finding the latest products that are either in low supply or out of stock. I realize it's not the best way of securing your Christmas gifts for the Yuletide season, but it certainly does beat going to a store and purchasing lots of gifts that can cost you hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.
Moreover, the deals at the stores may not be the best deals at all. That's a hard-hitting reality to most people, considering the fact that most Americans as of today are in serious debt one way or another. Imagine the interest rates accrued to your credit cards if you owe money to your creditors. Most Americans are buying items that may be overpriced, and the quality may not be worth the money spent on them. Additionally, most people don't take into account that, once you charge your credit card and the fixed APR rate (unless it's variable) is, say, 12 percent, you will end up paying interest on that card and will take you a long while to pay them off. People don't plan their shopping in advance anyway, so they end up maxing out their cards and not use cash at all. In a nutshell, there's no spending controls on their part.
If Americans are going to shop for items for Christmas, that's why they need to junk their charge cards and use cash instead. That way, you won't be in debt and you won't be paying high interest rates that can eat up your savings in the long term.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:37 PM
Federal judges approve requests for federal officials to harass cell phone companies to help them engage in cell phone tracking, especially by securing secret search warrants without probable cause.
A cell phone search warrant may be coming to your home sooner than you may think.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:24 PM
Zogby's latest GOP poll, released on November 21, shows Ron Paul at five percent. McLame and Slime-ney are tied at 9 percent. The Huckster is at 11 percent, Chumpson is at 15 percent, and Ghouliani is at 29 percent. Ron, of course, is ahead of both Spinner and Bland-credo who are both tied at 1 percent.
As I have said before, and I'll say it again: these polls are rigged in favor of the pro-Big Government establishment. These polls are all in favor of the Neo-Cons who have a monopoly on the polls, considering the respondents who answer the questions (which you don't know at all anyway) are Neo-Con-supporting Republicans. The claim that these polls are indicative of how the average American feels about this boring crop of contenders is just plain ludicrous. Everyone knows that these polls are just biased. One should not take these polls seriously, as they are not scientific, of course, and are therefore meaningless.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 5:00 PM
Belgium looks to America for liberation. And guess to which presidential candidate they're looking? It's Ron Paul.
We're talking liberation by example, not by a barrel of a gun.
(Thanks to Lew for first blogging this.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 4:39 PM
Dennis and Elizabeth Kucinich are nothing like Ron and Carol Paul. Not even by a long shot.
But, nevertheless, this video of the two is a favorable one. Watch it, and you'll see.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 4:02 PM
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:57 PM
The social-engineering-worshiping collectivists in Michigan's state regime are pondering a boost in the bridge tolls, according to the Detroit Free Press.
While they're at it, they might as well rename Michigan to Taxigan. Considering my governor Jenny Granholm is, in effect, transforming the state to a Canadianesque province, it might as well be known as that.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:47 PM
The Detroit Free Press reports that Michigan's presidential primary is all set for January 15, 2008.
Michiganders should vote for and support Ron Paul when that day comes. Go Ron Paul!
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 3:43 PM
The House Democrats in my home state of Michigan are looking to penalize the state's private employers who hire illegal immigrants. Their aim is to make it a felony for private sector employers who knowingly hire "undocumented workers" (a politically correct term for illegal aliens) in the state.
Today's online edition of the Detroit Free Press reports:
LANSING – House Democrats want to make it a felony for employers to knowingly hire illegal or undocumented immigrants in Michigan.
A four-bill package would require employers to verify documents for new hires under federal rules, such as driver's licenses, passports or Social Security cards.
Businesses that knowingly hire illegal immigrants could be jailed and fined – up to five years and $250,000 for repeat offenders.
Also, legitimate state residents who lose their jobs to illegal workers could sue their employers for restitution, under one of the bills.
'Every job that goes to an illegal worker is one more job that is stolen from our own hard workers here in Michigan,' said Rep. Mike Simpson, D-Jackson, a sponsor of one of the bills.
Simpson said he’s heard many complaints from many construction companies that they are underbid for jobs by others who use cheaper illegal laborers, some of them from out of state.
Excuse me, but by what right does the state have to dictate to private employers who they can and cannot hire? Private employers have every moral and ethical right to hire whoever is qualified for the jobs in the state. It's called freedom of association, and private property rights also have a hand in this as well. Their call for "tough sanctions" or even "criminal penalties" for employers, whether they "knowingly" hire "illegal" immigrants (I prefer to call them "independent migrants," a term coined by prominent libertarian commentator Sheldon Richman) or not, is an assault on free enterprise. Moreover, the Democrats, who are just as imperalist and statist as the Republicans, are employing Republicanese on the illegal immigration issue, simply to buy special interest votes. This pretty much showcases the fact that immigration policy reveals much about who we are.
Considering the fact that independent migrants have rights as much as nativist Americans do, the sad fact is that government operation and control of the borders have proved to be nothing less than disastrous. When the Democrats decided to adopt the xenophobic rhetoric of the Republicans, they became, by default, very much like the Republicans, and in most cases, even worse than the GOP on the issue.
The fact of the matter is this: this is a country, not a country club. The attitude that independent migrants have "broken the law" by coming into the country, especially when they weren't even aware of our laws beforehand, is just plain ridiculous. As convoluted and vague as our immigration controls are, how any migrant would be expected to know every provision of U.S. immigration law is perplexing. When you hear xenophobic conservatives make arguments against immigration (legal and/or illegal), their chief complaints are that such migrants are here in the U.S. for the cardinal purpose of sucking the welfare teat. Other objections to their presence here are that they are taking away jobs, filling up our schools at taxpayers' expense, and receiving free medical care and getting drivers licenses at taxpayers' expense as well.
The fact of the matter is that hardly any immigrants that do come into the U.S. (whether legal or illegal) are going on the dole (anyone who claims otherwise is being intellectually dishonest and disingenuous). Migrants actually subsidize the U.S. economy more so than we subsidize them, a fact that is often obscured by the xenophobes in both major parties (although the xenophobes have dominant control of the GOP). They even pay taxes into the system (sales taxes, property taxes, rent taxes, and even Social Security), a fact that is also concealed from the public by the xenophobes and their Neo-Con allies. In a nutshell, the "employers-are-hiring-illegals" racket is a red herring that's served to ignore the real issue, which is government control of immigration.
The second part of the nonsense -- that the migrants are taking away their jobs -- is just putrid to the core. Migrants are mostly taking agricultural jobs, jobs that most Americans will not take, considering they pay way below minimum wage. Plus, the working conditions are a big factor as to why most Americans will not accept them. How many Americans (show of hands, please!) are more than willing and excited to take those very low-paying jobs, when it's cheaper to offer them to the migrants, thus lowering their labor costs?
Finally, the third part of their arguments -- the migrants putting their kids into our public "government" school system and seeking medical treatment at our hospitals -- is just another red herring. Those issues are government school and government health care issues. They must be separated from each other and from the "illegal" immigration issue, even though xenophobes like to smear migrants by implying that so-called "illegals" are at fault for causing the implosion of the welfare state, when it's actually the xenophobic conservatives and their statist allies on both the Left and the Right who are responsible for this, considering they refuse to abolish the welfare state and eliminate government management, central planning, and operation of immigration.
One more thing: the reason that most immigrants come into the country "illegally" is that it's too expensive for them to arrive here in the U.S. via the legal channels. It costs hundred, if not thousands, of dollars just to apply for a green card or a work VISA. Plus, waiting in line at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (formerly the Immigration and Naturalization Service) is a nightmare, considering you can be standing there for hours. Moreover, if you lose your legal paperwork to come into the country legally, the bureaucrats wouldn't give a hoot about it; in fact, they would tell you to fill out the forms again and possibly pay thousands of more in application fees (something that most poor immigrants can't afford to do). Those who do pay those fees are either wealthy immigrants or immigrants who have loved ones living in the U.S. and willing to sponsor them. All others are either unlucky or fair game.
I suspect that most of the anti-immigration arguments are mostly racist and xenophobic in origin. I realize that some conservative commentators object to the migrants being here, but I suspect that a lot of their thinking is rooted in inherent bigotry.
The solution is to get the government out of the immigration business and allow individuals cross freely, while establishing real free trade. While we're at it, let's abolish the state, legalize freedom, and restore a true free market domestically and abroad.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:36 PM
Ron Paul is expected to raise more than $12 million at the end of the fourth quarter. Unsurprisingly, this is making the Neo-Con talking heads very nervous, as they see him as more of a threat now than they ever did months ago.
According to Bloomberg.com:
Nov. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Presidential candidate Ron Paul said he has raised more than $9 million in the past two months and he predicted his campaign will exceed its $12 million fourth-quarter goal.
'It looks like we can't stay under it,' Paul, a long-shot candidate for the Republican nomination, said in an interview on Bloomberg Television's 'Political Capital with Al Hunt,' scheduled to air today. Paul said organizers expect a Dec. 16 fundraising blitz to bring in more than the $4.2 million a similar event raised on Nov. 5, an 'astounding' amount.
Paul said he has begun 'spending generously' in key early- primary states. He is competing in New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina and Nevada, and said he expects to have money to campaign through Super Tuesday, Feb. 5, when at least 22 states may hold primaries and decide the nomination.
Paul called his Republican presidential rivals, including frontrunner Rudy Giuliani, 'neo-conservatives' whom he couldn't support in the general election should his own bid fail.
'They think we're supposed to spread our goodness through force,' Paul said. For example, none will pledge not to wage war on Iran, he said. 'How could I support something like that?'
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 2:24 PM
The Facts, a newspaper in Ron Paul's congressional district, has, since Paul's first foray into congressional politics, been -- if not terribly hostile -- very unfriendly to him.
The paper, as of recent late, has done an about-face for the most part by showcasing its support for him, considering it has been keeping a close eye on him for years.
It's an honorable thing for the paper to change its mind on the good Dr. Paul. After all, Ron speaks the truth about the issues. He sticks to his guns and has always and consistently voted in favor of principle over politics. The paper and its allies know that he can't be bought, not even by special interest groups who want to expand the size, cost, and scope of government.
It also shows that Ron means what he says. After all, given his clearly-consistent voting record, he is FOR constitutional government, unlike the other lame presidential contenders who pay lip service to freedom and consistently vote to kill it.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:14 PM
Ron Paul is #4 in the polls behind Ghouliani (#3), the Huckster (#2), and Slime-ney (#1). However, he is ahead of McLame (#6) and Chumpson (#5).
According to the Iowa Independent regarding Paul:
Paul's support comes from the least likely corners of Iowa, making it very difficult to measure with "likely voter" polls. Cynics expect his unlikely coalition to stay home on caucus night, and they might; but if the depth of a candidate's support is one measure of his likely success in the caucuses, Paul has the rest of the field beat. While Huckabee, Romney, Giuliani, former Sen. Fred Thompson, and Sen. John McCain appear to swap supporters every few weeks, Paul's fans remain squarely in his corner. And there is the oft-ignored fact that polls show that a majority of likely GOP caucus-goers favor withdrawal from Iraq within six months, which many analysts are hard-pressed to explain.
(Hat tip to Lew for mentioning this.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 12:03 PM
"With His Maverick GOP Bid." And frankly, it terrifies them.
The Detroit Free Press piece further notes:
STRAFFORD, N.H. -- There's no mistaking which house on Lake Shore Drive, about 45 minutes northeast of Manchester, is the one full of Paulites -- the almost fanatical supporters of Rep. Ron Paul. Signs are everywhere. On the back window of a brand new black Toyota, on the bumper of a green Geo: 'Ron Paul 2008.'
'We can run the whole New Hampshire campaign right here,' says Jim Forsythe, 39, from his driveway. "We're the hard-core supporters."
Like Paul himself, the Paulites are against the war in Iraq, against the growing federal bureaucracy, against the Department of Homeland Security, the income tax, against, as Forsythe says, 'politics as we've known it.'
(Thanks to Lew for his blog posting on this.)
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:50 AM
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 11:46 AM
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:54 PM
Self-described "militant moderate" and political hack Jason Steck of The Van Der Galiën Gazette mimics the Ron Paul bashfest that was provoked by prominent "libertarian" Eugene Volokh of the Volokh Conspiracy. Both Steck and Volokh claim that Ron Paul is "bad for libertarianism," simply because he isn't as libertarian as he claims to be.
Both of them take issue with Ron's position on the war, but more importantly, their biggest beef with him is his views on free trade, immigration, and school choice. While I find their issue with him on the immigration matter is a valid one, their issue with him on the other two stands are simply moronic and do not dignify a response.
Here's what Volokh and Steck say about Ron in their prospective blogs:
As the Club for Growth describes here, Ron Paul has opposed virtually all free trade agreements. Few ideas are more fundamental to libertarianism than free trade. As the Club has documented, Paul also has opposed school voucher programs. In both of these cases, in fairness, Paul claims that his position is based on the idea that some other approach - unilateral free trade or home schooling - is even more libertarian than what he opposes. Even if he is correct on these points, I see no libertarian virtue in supporting the far less libertarian status quo against free trade agreements and school vouchers respectively. Even if trade agreements and vouchers are not the optimal libertarian policies, they are surely superior to the status quo of tariffs and government monopoly schooling.
Perhaps worst of all, Paul has bought into the conservative nativist line on immigration. He not only favors a massive crackdown on illegal immigration but even seems to endorse the view that immigration should be "reduced, not expanded" whether legal or not. To my mind, the freedom to choose where you live and the right to move to a freer and more prosperous society are among the most important of all libertarian principles. From a libertarian perspective, our relative openness to immigration is one of the most admirable aspects of America.
Unlike in the case of free trade and school choice, Paul doesn't even pretend to argue that his position is based on the idea that there is some other policy that will be even more libertarian than the one he opposes. Instead, he clearly endorses the big goverment option of a "allocat[ing] far more resources, both in terms of money and manpower" to cracking down on illegal immigration and perhaps reducing legal immigration as well.
While I do disagree with Ron on the immigration issue (I concede that, to a minor degree, he has embraced the nativist line on immigration), I find it intellectually dishonest of these men to paint Ron as being against all free trade (all because he oppose free trade agreements that are managed by government) and education freedom (all because he opposes government-subsidized vouchers). Their grievance with him on the war in Iraq is also moronic, because the war itself was unconstitutional, illegal, and unjustified, and the American people were lied to about the war and snowed into supporting it (even though it's an unwinnable one) in the first place.
Finally, even though Ron hasn't adopted the neolibertarian line that these liberventionists prefer him to do, what Steck and Volokh fail to understand is that libertarianism is a political philosophy that advocates the absence of government intervention in all of our lives, foreign and domestic. By selectively supporting certain interventionistic policies and opposing a few others, these two men are hypocritical for criticizing Ron for being anti-libertarian on the issues, when they are far more anti-libertarian than Ron ever will be. By adopting the conservative mindset and mixing it with their libertarian ideology, these men are not libertarians, but actual conservatives who talk the talk but never walk the walk.
While Ron isn't exactly the most perfect candidate in this race and most certainly not one in the libertarian movement, he is far more libertarian than most of the hucksters that we seen in both the Libertarian and Republican camps (Wayne Allyn Root comes to mind). He may be 97 percent libertarian on the issues, and 3 percent anti-libertarian on several issues, but I'd rather take a candidate who is 97 percent right as opposed to a candidate who is 20 percent right (or worse yet, 2 percent right).
One more thing: Volokh pulls the "guilt-by-association" scheme on Paul by criticizing him for not publicly distancing himself from certain dubious parties who have come to endorse him and his campaign, parties such as the Stormfront neo-Nazi racists, 9/11 Truthers, and other loopy groups. While he is correct that Ron has not publicly spoken against these groups, he has no control of what groups flock to him. As long as he doesn't adopt their dubious and racist rhetoric, Ron has no formal and official associations with them, other than the fact that he has received donations from them.
UPDATE (11/23/2007): My good friend Chris Kemp has wanted me to correct one part on here. It turns out that he's right: Ron has spoken out publicly against Stormfront and other groups just like it. He has denied any kind of relationship with the group whatsoever. Therefore, the statement made by Volokh is out of line. My apologies for any misleading statements or misunderstandings on my part.
Posted by Todd Andrew Barnett at 10:06 PM