Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

Los Angeles Gun “Buyback” An Epic Fail

December 27, 2012

Los Angeles Mayor’s Gun “Buyback” An Epic Fail

12/27/12
By: Gary Hardee

Original CBS story: here

Anyone who has been observing the political left since the 1970’s is not surprised in the slightest at the predictable knee-jerk response to the recent high profile tragedies at Sandy Hook Elementary School and the Aurora, Colorado theater.

The well entrenched minority of international collectivist elites will stop at nothing to deprive their targets of the means to resist them. “Useful idiots”, as the communists call them, are abundant. Let any crisis, real or imagined, occur and the pressure from above begins and the cannon fodder masses, feelings close in tow, bow in unison to calls that defy history’s lessons and surge headlong into the lion’s teeth.

In this CBS propaganda piece, such conclusions are easily reached. We see no attempt to balance the sympathetic actions, though rewarded with money for guns, with hard facts about the clear disconnect with crime statistics and the massive number of guns in the hands of the public at large. Instead, we see a most tortured rant against guns and the over glorified and totally ineffective childish turning in of guns for cash.

If 2,500 guns are expected to be “turned in” in this drive and 8,000 guns since 2009 have been turned in, that makes a total of 10,500 guns. Assuming only one gun per person is turned in out of at city with a population of 3,819,702 – the participation rate in this “most successful drive ever” is .002748, or a non-participation rate over 3 years of 99.997251 percent of the city’s population.  Good for you Los Angeles. Your intelligence is not given any credit by CBS or the Mayor of your city.

According to a Gallop Politics article from October 2011, 47% of adult Americans own a firearm. Admittedly, these figures are not exact, but if just 20% of L.A. adults own one gun, that’s 1,963,940 guns in the city.

10,500 guns is only 1/2 of 1 percent of the total. This media piece makes it sound like the 33% reduction in crime from 2009 to date is due to the gun buyback program involving just 8,000 guns. If just turning in 8,000 guns has resulted in a 33% reduction in violent crime then with just another 16,000 turned in it would eliminate the other 67% of violent crime in L.A. It is the gun grabbers that are making the firm connection so one must surmise they are blaming just 8,000 guns for previous higher rate in violent crimes. How does one honestly connect those 8,000 guns, not now in the hands of the citizens, with a reduction in violent crime unless it was those very guns that committed the crimes?

A non-thinking person is lead therefore to conclude that just 24,000 guns are responsible for all violent crime there. If this were true, why call for the disarming of the 99% of guns that are not responsible for crime? It is also mathematically and statistically insane to conclude that zero violent crime will only occur if all guns are banned and confiscated when by their own implied logic only 24,000 guns cover all violent crime.

The more you slice the media hype the more ridiculous their claims become.

What percentage of L.A.’s violent crimes are committed by repeat offenders, parolees, early parolees, or the criminally bent gangs or gangbangers? Nothing is said about the number of would-be violent acts that are thwarted by a citizen with a gun or what will likely happen when only the unstable and criminally inclined have them.

The second amendment’s purpose is to preserve a “free state” against all enemies, foreign and domestic, against tyrannical agents and authoritarianism emanating from our own government. History shows that authoritarianism is best achieved with a disarmed citizenry.

The high degree of non-participation in this “buyback” scheme tells me the collectivist propaganda is largely falling on deaf ears as it should. Just watch out for and defeat local, state and federal infringements that are surely forthcoming!

We all share great sympathy with the victims and their loved ones so maliciously deprived their young lives it still does not justify a course that will only leave more people even more defenseless. This is not good government or good policy, it is lunacy!

I too would like to live in a world free of crime and violence. Not all crime is violent and not all violence is criminal. But what we all know, understand and accept is that evil, unethical, and immoral actions will never be stopped, even in the most authoritarian system imaginable. Under such systems, crime does not cease, it becomes enshrined and emanates from those in power.

Considering the wide array of “criminal activity” that has befallen mankind, the real question becomes; When actual threats to your life, liberty or property come calling at your doorstep, what means of defense against the aggression should you be deprived of or denied by your own government through laws? What tools of aggression do you think the criminals will be denied because of those same laws?

It is unethical of me to deny you your preferred means of defense. Forcibly denying you makes me responsible for your full safety – an impossible task!

The best way to contain or eliminate all types of crime is the universal collective threat of a bullet between the eyes.

US Gun Statistics:  http://rense.com/general62/gns.htm

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What’s This Talk About Secession?

December 16, 2012

12/16/2012
by: Gary Hardee

Some may wish to be a ward of the state, receiving from it gratefully the crumbs of what are their natural rights, bowing low to accommodate the will of the “collective” and yield to the pervasive “group think” that now haunts the thinking of our citizens… but where does it end?

Perhaps you are married “till death do us part”. Does that rule out a divorce from a totally out of control marriage that is clearly violating its foundational tenants? Why do laws allow for divorce in the face of that voluntary vow of monogamy and other expected normal functioning of a married loving couple?

Isn’t it funny how we apply situation ethics when we find the ends to our liking? Are there times when extreme irreconcilable conditions exist that justify ones public appeals for peace, harmony or justice?

We forbid involuntary servitude and rightfully object to taxation without representation but let one person get serious with their clear defiance to such treatment and threaten to divorce themselves from the oppression, harming the union, and they all of a sudden become the threat? Is there no relief for an injured and abused victim? Elections you say? Become a democracy you say? Let 51% rule the other 49% you say?

We can peacefully decent but not too much, right? How and why does loyalty and patriotism to your nation’s founding principles become widely viewed as insurrection?

“Separate but equal” is the often criticized term, wrongly accused of being rooted in racism when it is more clearly rooted in our own individual rights. Under our union of states we are and were meant to be separate but equal. “Equal” in the eyes of the federal government, is to show no favoritism to one state over another in adjudicating disputes between them. Yet they are sovereign, free to otherwise compete with one another, their people freely moving about in support of that state that most reflects our preferred conditions for happiness.

Is it not proper, that we can enter into a contract and it become null, if breached by the signers, and seek court enforced remunerations against the violating party? By this measure, is it not also proper that upon decades of merciless violations of the Constitution which they alone approved would seek relief as sovereign members from that union? When if not under such circumstances are states superior to that which they created? It defies logic that parties to a contract creating something cannot also de-create that something when it no longer serves the agreed upon best interests of the parties that created it, or as they say, “no longer functions as the founders intended”.  The concept of willful consensual participation in an atmosphere of unilateral and widespread abuse only goes so far. Redress of grievances was one of the reasons we declared independence from Great Britain.

So, while I am not at all in favor of secession or any dissolution of our republic, I am totally in favor of reviving the contract as it is written and amended “from time to time”.

The “republic” that Benjamin Franklin alluded to is too sadly remote from the knowledge and hearts of her people. The 17th amendment struck a horrible blow to that republic and has resulted in the erosion of the states’ voice in checking and balancing the easily fanned emotions of the people. We are suffering from its approval and will re-balance when it is repealed.

Even the great capitalist favoring business magazine (Forbes) would not remain in an oft violated contract with anyone without seeking firm relief and justice under repeated violations.

Injunctive relief is the larger motive behind recent calls for secession. While the citizens’ general knowledge of our union is severely lacking, it may compel the states to act, being one of the guardians and responsible parties to the pact.

As long as our states elected legislatures operate within the confines of their respective state constitutions and seek that injunctive relief through state calls, we may yet curtail and retract the unauthorized actions of the federal government that brought us to this stage. It is not to bring about harm by the secession calls, quite the contrary! Saying that the union will be harmed or damaged is to rule out the attainment of due relief and balance that more properly existed and heal the nation by again putting the horse in front of the cart. The people’s natural rights are the source of authority for the states, and with the states, are the higher authority of the federal government, and in that order.

May we accomplish the objective of re-balancing post-haste! Then and only then will be see a free nation produce to its potential.

The Preamble – From Beyond The Grave

September 15, 2012

What Might They Say?

Preamble to the United States Constitution

Preamble to the United States Constitution (Photo credit: drewgeraets)

By: Gary Hardee

“We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Why this “statement of purpose” is not readily understood is likely the result of many factors, not the least of which are decades of cultural and educational decline, governments running and regulating the school systems, unionized government paid and approved school teachers, and thereby a steady rewriting of history to favor government actions that run counter to the very words of the Preamble!

So, in keeping with today’s words and communications standards I offer this interpretation as if from the founders:

“We, the writers of this Constitution, having deliberated extensively over every issue we think critical for the proper operating of a national government, having just endured a war and struggle for freedom over tyranny, and the earlier problems under the Articles of Confederation, are compelled by this 1st and present Constitutional Convention seeking to accomplish six main goals as noted below. We have combined all our wisdom, knowledge and experience to offer and propose this set of rules and guidelines to achieve them. They are:

1) To form a more perfect union of the states as they relate to each other, in our relations to each other and in our relations to other nations of the world.

2) Establish justice.

3) Insure domestic tranquility and peace – therefore the greatest happiness.

4) Provide for the means of common defense in times of attack or threats.

5) Promote the general welfare of all parties to this Constitution.

6) Secure the blessings of liberty, both now and to those yet unborn.

A stable and enduring government, built and operated for the benefit of her citizens generally, must remain small and restricted. We can think of no better way to accomplish this than to base its powers on the consent of the governed and limiting its activities to only those things that we individually have a natural right to do or more locally, the states.

There is a natural danger in governments, in establishing governments and in operating governments. Their tendency is to grow beyond their proper functions and to become instruments of legal plunder and turn into tyranny. Vigilance, our fellow citizens, is the price of freedom and if you think that you can sit on your laurels, generation after generation, and shirk this duty of vigilance and remain free – you are sadly mistaken!

We have taken great pains to accomplish the six goals above. We’d like to point out that they are all inclusive and considerate of each other, inseparable. For the record, a preamble is a statement of purpose, an overarching goal, an ideal end point and what we hope to accomplish. It does not grant any powers itself, only the body and subsequent amendments that are consistent with it will keep our republic true to its purposes. Let not any amendment be approved that does not conform to these goals or tyranny will be in your futures!

It is vital that you do not allow our words and intent to be misconstrued and distorted. Men will come along, seeking to undo and thwart our best laid restraints. It is the nature of man to live at the expense of others. History has instructed us to build a hardened wall against this nature of man. We have done that in our day to the best of our current abilities but it may not be perfect and as times change, new safeguards may be required through amendment. Be on guard and teach every generation accurate history so as to not fall prey to their ploys and evil designs. Heed our warning that the accumulation and concentration of powers in a single place is the very definition of tyranny.

Consider our time and what we have just endured. From our long struggles with abuses and arbitrary powers we have created and offer to a young nation this Constitution for you to improve at necessary times by amendment. Let no one assume powers not specifically delegated or that run counter to the preamble.

We wish every succeeding generation great wisdom and character in the exercise of its self-interest. Maintain the atmosphere of personal liberties and personal responsibilities which are given to each from Divine Providence, not government.  Jealously guard your liberties or fall victim to the lowest desires of fallen man.”

(posthumously and respectfully submitted to our countrymen ~ the Founders)

Keeping it Real and Open – the Internet!

September 1, 2012

Like many of you around the world, I like the animating contest of freedom over the slavery of restrictions imposed on me by others. The lack of knowledge, even by the willful rejection of the truth, empowers enslavement ends. The ignorant and willfully ignorant are far more apt to swallow the deceptions of tricksters, con-artists, crooks, tyrants and collectivists.  “The truth shall set you free” is a well-known and accepted axiom, but for it to be fulfilled, it requires us to want truth and have the willingness to accept the transforming impact that comes along with it.

Restoring liberty will not be done from the top down but from the bottom up! Entrenched powers seldom want limits placed on them, but rather, more of the same.  Truth and knowledge breeds freedom, while deception and ignorance breeds tyranny – a tyranny that is sadly asked for by those who have allowed themselves to become dependent to the corrupting “system”.

Once you accept that evil men conspire to advance their personal agendas, that birds of a feather flock together and that those that want insulation from market competition will compromise most principles to have government do their dirty work, you begin to get a small sense of the long entrenched conspiratorial forces that must be vanquished. It is not an easy task, nor is it for the faint of heart. It will for now, likely cause you to lose more friends than gain them. Those you enlighten will forever express their thanks while others may become uncomfortable around you because they know they should be more active in opposing the evil you made them aware of.

To be a “dignitary” one should comport oneself in a dignified manner.  Desiring to assume and wield unauthorized power over the life and property of another makes man little short of a thief and con-artist, or a would-be tyrant.  Collectivists and would-be tyrants cannot qualify as being worthy of the title “dignitary”.

The people of Earth live in truly exciting, if not hard times.  A time in which, thanks mostly to the growing and widespread use of the internet, mankind is more able to communicate with each other. Therefore they are breaking from the old mediums of biased media, prominent collectivist think tanks and book publishers, entrenched left-wing college professors, and the most destructive of all – our national system of “public schools”.

What does inadequate, insufficient and deliberately withheld knowledge give to the solving of any problem?  Nothing! Ignorance contributes nothing to freedom, however, knowledge does.  Ignorant and free can never be.  If you don’t recognize the previous sentence as a famous saying – you may be ignorant.  Don’t feel bad, we are all ignorant (lack knowledge) in some area.  I am not condemning general ignorance but rather the widespread resistance to certain knowledge and vital truths.

Provided that the internet remains open and uncontrolled; a virtual information anarchy, a place where information is made available and shared openly, we will by osmosis learn to think and reason on our own and to throw off preposterous notions and deliberate propaganda. Frauds will be discovered and so will time-honored principles.  The internet’s openness, while chaotic, will be freedom’s salvation if man steps up to influence its destiny.  While “Net Neutrality” and other such schemes to limit or restrict the free flow of communications serve only tyrants, it is readily apparent that putting the technology “Jeanie” back in the bottle will be highly improbable.

I believe we are beginning to see the gradual rising tide of truth and therefore freedom, not just in the U.S. but in Europe and elsewhere. I believe that freedom will ultimately win, even as it exposes certain false “conservatives” of today. The individual will again be respected and contracts upheld. The occasional “dust storm”, while likely, will not be blinding.

The generally accepted concept that there are only two sides to an argument is beginning to be seriously challenged by this open information exchange.  People and belief systems are not as complex as one might think.  No one likes a thief.  No one likes a thug.  No one likes a murderer. We may disagree about what to do, but we are on the same side of the issue.

We know there are liberal-conservatives as well as conservative-liberals for instance. This is not news. What really is news is that because the internet allows for greater unregulated communication, both sides are starting to form alliances to fight for commonly held issues.  It’s not the answer but it is a start.

We know there are “anti-war” Republicans and Democrats that see no sense continuing to wage the “war on drugs” or other politically driven war.  We are discovering and bridging common ground and beginning to grow a backbone for resistance to certain collectivist and authoritarian policies and laws.  The growth of this much-needed “backbone” may be painfully slow, but does have the potential for rapid manifestation as enlightenment spreads.

Robert Welch said in 1958: “All we must find and use and build to win is a sufficient understanding, while there is still time”.  Many citizens, from the 50’s to the 80’s rang the alarm bells and provided resistance to communism, collectivism, fiat money, debt and deficits, globalism and the U.N.’s military goals.  I thank them and honor their sacrifices. Their efforts may not have fully awakened freedom from her “comatose” state but those dutiful citizens may have kept her alive long enough for the internet “defibrillator” of today to play its role.

Any individual, group, leader, agency or non-governmental agency, bureaucrat or politician that favors controls on the internet is not the friend of freedom.

Real Choice, Real Serious, Real Scary!

July 1, 2012

7/1/2012
by: Gary Hardee

In his June 27, 2012 blog entry entitled “Deep Concerns about the Media Should Romney Win”, Rodney Page, author of the to be released book, “Powers Not Delegated”, he lays out his concerns regarding the tricks and tactics of the dominant liberal media.

See his blog here:
http://blog.powersnotdelegated.com/2012/06/27/deep-concerns-about-the-media-should-romney-win.aspx

His points are well taken and I don’t take issue with the bulk of his points. It’s a worthy read for those who truly value their vote this November!

Perhaps Mr. Page will approve of my comments or maybe he won’t. But since we now have the power of the internet, our voices cannot be silenced if we take time to bypass MSM outlets and take our statements directly to the people.  So, here is my response for your consideration.

The deception that Romney is significantly “better” or “diametrically opposed” to Obama is a scam and a lie. Both are government operatives and “managers”. Both have clear records that prove it. Obama is perhaps a more strident and blatant radical, even the label of Marxist I can accept. But Romney will serve the same globalist interests that Obama does. The wars, undeclared, will continue wherever the eastern liberal establishment (the Insiders) want them to occur.

If you vote for Romney and he wins, don’t expect much better due to the backers that are promoting his candidacy. I’m not talking about the local voter who can’t stand Obama and want him out. Otherwise known as the ABO crowd. I’m talking about the same ones who gave us H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and even Jimmy Carter as well.

No discussion of the cure is helpful unless one first recognizes the real “kingmakers” that are giving us false choices to begin with.

Only a candidate that wants a return to individual freedom and a limited government based on the restrictions imposed by the US Constitution will bring us out of the socialist quagmire we find ourselves in today. Romney will not do it! His false “conservatism” coupled with his highly liberal record in Massachusetts should be proof enough for any brain ruled by common sense.

I do not question the good intentions of the vast majority of Romney supporters but I do have grave concerns over their apparently flawed hope the he will truly side with the Constitution.

There is only one man that has proven his worthiness of the Presidency but he is not the Insider’s choice! Thus we see the media “blackout” and steady promotion of almost any other. Just as in 2008, we again are not allowed to hear equally from Ron Paul. The Insiders have successfully scared the Republican base into avoiding him in favor of another neo-con “repeat” and possible defeat rather than recognize that his honesty and character would surely win over the dishonest collectivism of Obama.

So! Why is the media silencing him by  ignoring and lampooning him? Why isn’t he being interviewed honestly and with respect, on the national news shows? His predictions, well in advance of housing crisis alone, should propel him to “expert” status, and it has if you ask many media types, off the record.

If you want a President who is consistently on the side of the people and their labors, who understands well the dynamics of markets and the downfalls of debt and continual wars, who can move us toward sound money and reduced inflation and reduce our destructive entangling alliances the founders warned so often about, etc., your only choice is to vote for Ron Paul in November no matter what!

The collectivism of Obama will not be stopped by Romney. We must elect more Congressmen to DC that are much like Ron Paul so that no matter who we are forced to accept for President, funding can be denied for all unconstitutional activities of the federal government.

The people must rise with a backbone and throw out those who have proven records of creating more and more laws and job destroying regulations that are clearly not authorized activities of the fed.

“We get the government we deserve”, is generally true. But will we deserve better this time around? Will we be wiser? Or will we make another stupid mistake?

Freedom of Choice! Its Roots and Relevance

April 17, 2012

One Man’s Opinion

By:  Gary Hardee
Date:  4/17/2012

On a purely personal level, the evidence that a Supreme Being, Divine Providence, God or whatever one chooses to call it, is hard to miss.

As for me, God makes the most sense. A God that promotes love over hate, choice over force, forgiveness over persecution, truth over lies, principles over situation ethics, personal responsibility over blaming others, laws over do what “feels” right, discipline over aimlessness, order over chaos and justice over wanton violence and suffering,  is consistent with Divine Providence and all major religious schools of thought. A “god” that promotes the later in each case is not a god that is worthy of emulation or following.

Is it wrong to embrace freely all the better values listed above? Put another way, would a wise man seek to embrace and practice such good values on his own?  Criminals surely do not obey or embrace all, some or any of them.  Criminal minds opt for the later in some cases. Twisting these concepts to “fit” their decisions, the criminal justifies their actions even if acted out in the spur of the moment.

A free person must have choice. If his ability to choose is denied – is he truly free? So where does a free man’s choice end? Can he choose to do anything he wants at any time he wants with anyone or anything he wants if no one is forced involuntarily to take part or have their natural rights affected? The basic answer is yes! Now you might disagree, but that’s your choice as well. I seek not to force my views upon anyone but “choose” to use the power of persuasion. Some fundamentalists feel they are justified to use force to impose their “standards” on others; denying others both their choices and the accompanying “price” they naturally “pay” for their choices. This attitude tends to spring from a more “group” or “collectivist” view that should a majority say it should be law (force) then it is a moral law. I totally reject this view!

The funny thing about God is that “force” has NEVER been his weapon. He seeks not to “control” us but to teach us lessons by allowing us to suffer from our bad choices while we prosper and become happier with our good ones.

All religions aside, I believe the “Ten Commandments” were not given to deny us choice but to strongly suggests for us what is good to voluntarily embrace. Perhaps it is a view into the “mind of God” if you will.  For He surely knew mankind needed something to be “brought to their senses”. No better guidance than these exist for man to follow. But will mankind follow each one if they are “legislated” by government and become punishable under “law”? Not a chance! Many are and still yet “violations” occur every second of every day. Take American football or golfing for others – on Sunday. “No other Gods before me…”, “Remember the Sabbath and keep it Holy”.  What about the crass commercialization of Jesus’ birthday celebrated as Christmas or even the “Easter Bunny” and hunting eggs when celebrating Jesus’ resurrection? Appropriate? Again, it’s your choice but don’t think it doesn’t come without its subtle, “unintended” consequences.

Violations and perversions of these “Ten” existed before being “published”. And no matter the laws have been passed, they continue today. God’s judgment is immediate in some cases and delayed in others. The results are visible and private, often far-reaching yet in most instances very personal. But it is clear to me that all societies, to the extent their members choose to violate them, experience His judgment as their societies become more corrupt, unprincipled, lawless, unloving, irresponsible, undisciplined, restrictive and regimented and unforgiving.

Virtually every evil that a society suffers can be traced back to one or more violations of these “Ten”.  It is universally accepted that no man is perfect and that indeed “ALL have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God!” In the marketplace of virtues, the least purchased item may well be “Humility”.

Your comments are welcome!

Secretary Clinton Expresses Concern for North Korean Citizens

December 20, 2011

Dow Jones Newswires 12-20-11, 01:13 ET

WASHINGTON (AFP)–Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the U.S. was “deeply concerned” for North Korea’s citizens, and offered “thoughts and prayers” in the wake of leader Kim Jong Il’s death. It is the U.S. hope the new North Korean leadership “will choose to guide their nation onto the path of peace by honoring North Korea’s commitments, improving relations with its neighbors, and respecting the rights of its people, ” Clinton said in a statement late Monday. “We are deeply concerned with the well being of the North Korean people and our thoughts and prayers are with them during these difficult times,” the top U.S. diplomat said, after U.S. leaders had earlier voiced concern for smooth transition after the death of the long-time strongman leader. ” The United States stands ready to help the North Korean people and urges the new leadership to work with the international community to usher in a new era of peace, prosperity and lasting security on the Korean Peninsula ,” she said. U.S. President Barack Obama had called President Lee Myung -bak of South Korea after the death of the 69-year-old leader, with officials saying the U.S. president reaffirmed commitment to “the security of our close ally, the Republic of Korea .” Earlier Clinton called for a “peaceful and stable” transition in North Korea and said the U.S. wanted better relations with its people after Kim Jong Il’s death. “We both share a common interest in a peaceful and stable transition in North Korea as well as ensuring regional peace and stability,” Clinton said after talks with Japan’s Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba . “We reiterate our hope for improved relations with the people of North Korea and remain deeply concerned about their well-being,” she said. Clinton said the U.S. has also been in “close touch” with South Korea along with China and Russia , which were all involved in now-moribund denuclearization talks with North Korea . Gemba–whose visit was scheduled before the shock announcement of Kim’s death- -agreed with the U.S. stance on North Korea and urged renewed efforts over the cases of Japanese abducted by the communist regime.

(END)

This came across the DOW Jones Newswire and wanted to post it in case it was not generally available online in search results. I will add no analysis or opinion at this time. I just wanted it available to others.

The U.S. Constitution Explained!

December 14, 2011

Part 1

Intro & The Preamble

By Gary Hardee

Why attempt to explain something that changes from day-to-day or year over year? Seems rather difficult and is temporarily correct at best!  When, for instance, does the word “car” mean one thing one year and something else in another. Advancements and improvements are made as knowledge, technology, manufacturing processes and consumer preferences change. But a car is still a car, isn’t it? Let’s try “apple”.  Not the computer but the fruit. It really never changes and cannot be confused with a banana.

The wonderful thing about the US Constitution is that it is fixed and determined. Absolute, firm and precise! At the same time, its authors provided for ways to change it but under a very strict and precise process. This if used wisely, is a good thing too! But it is not arbitrary or random nor subject to interpretations different from its words and intent.

Limits and predictability are things of virtue and reliance; things upon which we need worry little about. We understand and appreciate anything that serves us well. But when someone twists a washing machine into a lawnmower it would be the height of idiocy to expect it to wash our clothes any longer and cannot be viewed as a washing machine.

The Constitution of the United States has a design and a purpose. What is that purpose? It is to promote the general welfare! Do you doubt that? Have you ever asked yourself: What is a Preamble? Here is the definition followed by the Preamble of the US Constitution itself.

Preamble: “1. a preliminary or introductory statement, esp. attached to a statute or constitution setting forth its purpose(s)”.

The Preamble of the U S Constitution

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

There are six goals of the Constitution. Each of the goals are noble and support the best interests of the general welfare of the people of these United States. It is very important to note the word “general” as opposed to “specific” or ‘targeted”.  It would be totally illogical to say you are for the general welfare of a people and at the same time allow for the specific welfare of one over another.

One thing is for sure; government is force. There are two types of force; justified and unjustified. Any use of force, by a government or individual, needs justification to be considered ethical and moral. The only justification in the use of force by government must be in agreement with the Preamble.

  1. To improve upon the Articles of Confederation. (n/a)
  2. Establish Justice
  3. Insure domestic Tranquility
  4. Provide for the Common Defense
  5. Promote the General Welfare
  6. Secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity

As they clearly said; it is for these reasons and purposes that it is ordained and established. Is there any remaining doubt about the founders’ intent? Is it proper to take any clause, statement or paragraph, contained within its text, to mean something that is damaging to these stated goals? Is it not also equally logical to conclude that if we abide and adhere to the specific terms within the Constitution itself, that the goals in the preamble will be best attained?

To allow for necessary changes to expand and enhance these goals the founders included the process and provisions to amend the text.  Is it then proper to adopt amendments that hurt or diminish the goals laid out in the Preamble?

Amendments have come and gone. Old amendments revoked or modified while entire new ones have been added. If the voting citizens understand why it is important to stay true to the Constitution, our elected officials would as well and we would once again reap the Blessings of Liberty.

Your Vote: Do you? Should you? Why?

December 12, 2011

Voting: Its Importance, Accuracy, Abuse and Reform

By: Gary Hardee

The United States is full of good people, well-meaning people, in and out of government. We know and accept this. We also know that there are bad people, evil people, devious people and people who seek power and undue influence in almost every walk of life. We know about special interest influence peddling and the political bias in reporting the “news”, which is more a “statement of opinion” these days, than facts. These influences can reasonably be termed “negative influences”.

On the other hand, “positive influences” are rooted in being informed, getting to the truth of issues, knowing the lessons of history and the importance of how to preserve a free society. I know of very few that go to the polls and cast their vote to bring about a slave state or a totalitarian regime.

Much today is made of the term “self-interest”. Having hit briefly touched on the positive and negative forces above, the issue of self-interest is much more complicated and delicate. But it is at the core of the motivations and decisions that we exercise on election day. Whether you think government should do more or do less, or just something different, it remains the driving force in who and what we vote for or against. When you boil it all down, voting is a reflecting of what we have been convinced is an extension of what we think is in our best interests.

If you are evil, corrupt, dishonest, lazy, uninformed, ignorant or greedy, you will likely vote accordingly. If you are an angel, well educated, naive, starry eyed, trusting,  suspicious, fearful or a scholarly economist, you will likely vote accordingly.

But there is one thing about voting that cannot be denied and that is by doing so and participating in the election of “public servants”, we are granting our permission for them to act on our best self-interests. We want so desperately to trust our elected officials to serve that best interest of the least among us as well as the greatest among us.  I believe there is one small element that we seldom think about or lays in our subconscious and that is our knowledge that each one of the places their right hand on the Bible and swears to protect, preserve and defend the Constitution of the United States of America.

We have almost a silent trust that every public servant has read and understands what its words are and what limitations of power they will be exercising. Sadly, far too many voters have even bothered to read it within the last 10 years of their lives. So let me ask, how can we expect to see it preserved by those elected or those who do the electing if we possess little or no clear understanding of its contents and deeper purposes?

With the astonishing vastness of the instantly available internet at our fingertips, we have even fewer excuses to remain ignorant about our republic. We have the ability to search a word, term or phrase into a search field and in milliseconds have all the information we need to inform ourselves better.

Regardless of how you feel about certain issues and regardless of which side of the issue you may be on, nothing overrides the first act, the first obligation and the solemn oath that binds our servants from mischief – their Oath of Office!

So, to the extent that we want our servants to stray and pass laws or repeal laws, raise our taxes and fees or repeal and reduce them, our requests should be rooted in a sound understanding of what is allowed and what is not. History should have taught each of us that a government large enough and powerful enough to give us all we want is also big enough and powerful enough to take all we have. There never has been nor will there ever be a “free” lunch, somebody somewhere at some point pays for it. It may be you, your neighbor, your friend or even your grandchildren, but somebody will have to pay the tab!

Please, before you vote this year, take an hour of your time and read the Constitution of our great republic. Remember too, that we honor our Veterans who have sacrificed their blood and left loved ones alone and children without a parent in its defense.  The first Vets were those who helped found this country!

When it comes to elections, given the almost universal electronic paperless tabulations that are used, just how much faith should we really have in the results? Should blind faith rule the day when such an important process is conducted by the government? Do we owe it to ourselves to establish an auditable paper trail? Are the results really the accurate results without being able to audit them? Have special interests taken advantage is this potentially hackable software driven system? How will we know that we have been defrauded if such fraud is really occurring?

There have been obvious advances in technology in the last 30 years that have both added to the quick reporting of vote tallies in elections. Such advances are admirable but do have an interesting if not adverse effect on voters’ behaviors.

Polls that close on the east coast while the west coast and Hawaii voters have still hours to vote before their polls close have been at the heart of electoral criticism for years.  Calling early states’ outcomes in national elections may increase or decrease the numbers of those who had planned to vote but didn’t or those who weren’t going to vote but did! While I have not researched to see if there are any studies on this specific subject, it pales in comparison to the much larger possibility  of vote tampering by other means.

Tampering may come in any number of forms. This is my list in declining order of importance:
1. Inability to audit the votes cast; no paper trail.
2. Outright but covert alteration of the real votes cast prior to official release.
3. Undue influence; very problematic!
4. Bribes or coercion; paying cash for your vote or use of fear tactics.
5. Disruptive reporting practices.
6. False registration or the use of another’s registration; be they dead or alive.
7. Dual or multiple registrations that might allow 2 or more votes by the same person in different precincts or states without proof positive of voter ID.

There may be others you could think of that might need examining but solving the most vexing problems from the above list would raise our confidence in the process and outcome. It would also provide for a reliable audit when challenged. Your suggestions, observations and criticisms are welcome so please comment.


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