Woe to the Republic: NDAA, SOPA, and Obama

Obama’s campaign for class resentment – The Washington Post

In Kansas, Obama lamented that millions “are now forced to take their children to food banks.” You have to admire the audacity. That’s the kind of damning observation the opposition brings up when you’ve been in office three years. Yet Obama summoned it to make the case for his reelection!

Why? Because, you see, he bears no responsibility for the current economic distress. It’s the rich. And, like Horatius at the bridge, Obama stands with the American masses against the soulless plutocrats.

This is populism so crude that it channels not Teddy Roosevelt so much as Hugo Chavez. But with high unemployment, economic stagnation and unprecedented deficits, what else can Obama say?

He can’t run on stewardship. He can’t run on policy. His signature initiatives — the stimulus, Obamacare and the failed cap-and-trade — will go unmentioned in his campaign ads. Indeed, they will be the stuff of Republican ads.

What’s left? Class resentment. Got a better idea?

While I often find myself disagreeing with Mr. Krauthammer’s interpretation of things in this article he is correct in questioning Obama’s ridiculous attempt to stir up class warfare in an attempt to get himself reelected. As noted in the article, Obama himself claimed he should be a one term president if he hadn’t fixed the economy. Of course, in true corrupt Washington elitist fashion, Obama has no intention of not running for a second term. So for the next eleven or so months we get to listen to the old Obama lies and deflections about how he did everything right at it’s everyone else’s fault that things are going wrong.

Sadly I have little hope anything will get better with the corrupt officials in Washington, especially with the passage of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and SOPA.

Most concerning to me are the detainee related provisions in the 2012 NDAA. While the government claims that there should be no concern over violating civil rights, I simply no longer trust the government, especially as corrupt and full of would be dictators as we have right now. All we need do is look to the abuses, failures and corruption running rampant in the DOJ, DHS, ICE, and TSA to see that the government is not trustworthy when it comes to guaranteeing and protecting American civil liberties, civil rights, and justice.

If there’s something the Occupiers and TEA Party should be united on it is opposition to the NDAA (as noted in Wendy Kaminer’s What Occupiers and Tea Partiers Should Fear Most – Wendy Kaminer – National – The Atlantic) and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).

At issue with the NDAA is Section 1031 which allows the indefinite detainment of terrorist suspects, including American citizens, without trial. This doesn’t sound bad to most people until you consider the full ramifications that you need only be deemed a suspect to be held, potentially without the ability to confront your accusers. Worse is knowing some wanted indefinite detention to be applied to American citizens and that these same people are still in the House and Senate. It simply saddens me to see the nation I love slipping further into fascism and dictatorship every under the guise of security and protection.

So then we have SOPA, a bill that ostensibly was to protect copyrighted material and such. Unfortunately, in true corrupt fashion, our politicians are using it to cripple the internet in favor of corporate special interests. I’m all for ending piracy and intellectual property theft but the manner in which SOPA goes about addressing the issue could easily lead to censorship, crippling free speech, and crippling business under a flood of lawsuits. SOPA is especially suspect in that it seems to target open source software projects, cripple US based internet companies (such as cloud computing and web hosting). It’s basically a giant mess that seems to be written not with fairness and neutrality in mind, but in ensuring hegemonic corporate control over internet content. Sadly, it will do nothing to stop online piracy. In it’s current state it appears it will only create problems for internet based businesses and websites as the concept of Net Neutrality is gutted for the corporations bottom line.

Regime Change 2012
Throw All The Bums Out!

Thoughts on 112th Congress

Just some thoughts I had on what I’d like the 112th Congress to do and/or accomplish.

  1. Repeal Obamacare. I know that repealing Obama’s health care law has as much chance as a snowball in hell but I’d still like to see it happen. If not repealing then I’d at least like to see some of the following changes made to it:
    • Removal of individual mandate on the grounds that the government has no authority to force citizens to buy a product that is otherwise optional.
    • Remove the 1% penalty tax for those without insurance coverage. This penalty rises to 2.5% in 2016.
    • Removal of dependents being able to stay on parents’ insurance until 26th birthday. I believe it is obvious that a normal 26 year old should be able to support themselves and pay for their own insurance and stop leeching off their parents.
    • Remove 10% tax on indoor tanning services. This is blatantly a simple unfairly targeted business tax.
    • Allow flexible spending accounts, health care reimbursement arrangements and health savings accounts to be used to pay for over the counter drugs.
    • Eliminate the costly, time and money consuming provision requiring business to file 1099 for payments over $600, adding further costs to business operations.
    • Remove 0.5% additional tax on earners making more than $200,000 ($250,000 for families) a year.
    • Remove the clauses cutting Medicare Advantage.
    • Eliminate the required caloric content on restaurant businesses and food vendors.
    • Eliminate the exemptions from the law that all members of the Federal government (from Federal union workers to congressmen to the President) will have. In other words, the elitists would have to live the like rest of the people with respect to this law.
    • Eliminate the excise tax on pharmaceutical companies as the tax will simply be passed on to the tax payers via highers costs.
    • Eliminate 2.3% excise tax on medical devices. Again an egregious burden placed on those who often can least afford it.
    • Eliminate the excise tax on insurance companies. The tax will simply be placed on citizens who will pay the brunt of the tax via higher fees and serves the secondary role of intentionally forcing people onto a socialistic government run health care system.
    • Elimination of the 40% excise tax on so called “Cadillac” plans.

  2. Do not expand the deficit ceiling again.  Congress continually allowing itself to spend without regard is the biggest part of the problems facing this nation. You can not borrow your way out of debt or into prosperity. Freeze the spending and cut the budget. When the government once more operates in the black, then the money and or taxes should be returned/lowered rather than spent on new items. Among the items I think should be done to achieve this are as follows:
    • Cut military budget to 15%-20% of total budget.
    • Across the board 5% spending but along with (but not cumulative to) the previously noted military budget cut.
    • Extend retirement age to 67.
    • Eliminate all pork spending. It may only be 1-2% of budget, but it is 1-2% that can be spent on paying down the debt instead of creating more debt.
    • Mandatory pay and benefit freeze to all Federal employees until debt and deficit eliminated, to be applied to all branches and members regardless of status. Preferably all wages and benefits should be cut.
    • Eliminate fraud, waste and abuse that cost the US $98 Billion in FY2009 and $72 Billion in FY2008.

  3. Immigration and Border Security. Simple. Enforce existing laws. Stop one branch of government preventing another branch of government from enforcing the law (e.g. BLM vs ICE, DHS vs. State police forces, et al.). Mandatory national e-verify system and enforcement. Seal the border and put into effect genuine, non-sanctuary supporting, immigration reforms.

There are a host of smaller issues to cover, but those are my big three issues for the 112th Congress of the United States. I hope the shake up of the November 2010 elections will be enough to get the Congress to due their jobs with due diligence, thought I suspect they will not. If nothing else, the new freshman, particularly the Tea Party backed members, should make things interesting for the old guard.

DREAM Act

Bill Text – 111th Congress (2009-2010) – THOMAS (Library of Congress)

While I oppose the DREAM Act solely on the ground that it is giving citizenship to illegal aliens I decided to read the text of it after hearing what sounds like some pretty outlandish claims of what was in the bill in order to determine if they were accurate or exaggerated (at least more so than usual). What I read hasn’t change my opposition, even if I think some of the over exaggeration is silly.

I don’t believe the lame-duck session of Congress should even be looking at giving amnesty to illegals. They should be concentrating on things that will assist the citizens first: the economy, extending unemployment benefits, and extending tax-cuts.

AZ Election Results

Election Winners
The following are all Republican unless otherwise noted.

Governor: Jan Brewer
Secretary of State: Ken Bennett
Attorney General: Tom Horne
State Treasurer: Doug Ducey
Superintendent: John Huppenthal
State Mine Inspector: Joe Hart
CD-1: Paul Gosar
CD-2: Trent Frank
CD-3: Ben Quayle
CD-4: Ed Pastor (D)
CD-5: David Schweikert
CD-6: Jeff Flake
CD-7: Raul Grijalva (D) (Likely winner at 48.6/45.8 as of this post.)
CD-8: Gabrielle Giffords (D) * (Likely to be contested at 48.6/47.6 split as of this post)
Senate: John McCain

I’m forgoing the state Legislature results since anyone outside the state wouldn’t care in the least who won or didn’t win. Overall pleased with the results. I hope the politicians get the message that they work for the people, not their party. We’ll have to wait and see if they heard it or not.

Propositions

106 – Health Care Protections – Passed (Ed Note: I incorrectly put it down as Prop 101 in my other post.)
107 – Prohibiting Preferential Treatment – Passed
109 – Hunting and Fishing a State Constitutional Right – Failed
110 – State Land Trusts – Failed
111- Creating Position of Lt Governor/Require Lt Gov and Gov to run as single ticket – Failed
112 – Initiative Petition Deadline Change to 6 Months – Passed* (50.1/49.9, so may face recount)
113 – Right to Secret Ballot Vote – Passed
203 – Medical Marijuana – Failed
301 – Transfer Conservation Fund to General Fund – Failed
302 – Transfer Early Childhood Development Funds to General Fund – Failed

I’m glad most Arizonans chose to be reasonable with their voting decisions with the propositions. While I had hoped medical marijuana would pass, I knew it was unlikely to be approved given fears of the Mexican Cartels and their war with the Mexican government and the crazy full legalization of marijuana effort in California. Likewise disappointed by the Hunting/Fishing Rights proposition likely failed to its poor wording and lack of full explanation to the average voters on what exactly it entailed but also can see how some would feel it was an attempt by the Legislature to overreach its authority.

Smells like victory. Victory for the people.

Now it is time for action, not platitudes.

Time’s Running Out…

Senate GOP again kills jobless aid extension

1 effin’ vote?

The GOP is putting the noose around their necks to commit political suicide with this over one vote for needed aid. It’s not like it’s the pork spending both parties love to tack on every budget or when bailing out corporations. Any good will garnered for their opposing wild spending and exploding government size and control will be gone if this extension doesn’t pass this week, before the July 4th break. Do the DC politicians really want to tell millions of Americans just before one of the nation’s most important holidays, the holiday the commemorates the nation’s founding, that going on vacation is more important to them than the American people? Really? Political suicide. No amount of weaseling by ignorant officials will change that fact. No blaming the other party will work either. Americans will be angry and rightly so at such blatant and arrogant disregard for the public by the Senate.

I stand by my pledge that if the extension isn’t passed by the Fouth of July I’m declaring my independence from incumbents. It doesn’t pass, so to shall the careers of all incumbents end at the ballot box in retaliation. Seeing the straights some people are in makes this for me the final straw. Even if they pass the extension afterwards I will do eveything I am able to assist in defeat in every incumbent regardless of party or affiliation.

Maybe I’m tilting at windmills, but enough is enough. It’s time to end this nonsensical political posturing by the demagogues of the parties and free the country from their destructive behavior and actions. The democrats have become socilaists and the republicans corporate monarchis. Meanwhile the people just want their federal republic back where in belongs, in their hands.

Are you listening, Senators McCain and Kyl? Doubtful. But you can’t say people didn’t warn you about the consequences of your hypocrisy and arrogance.

Stupak 11 Pork

After voting for ObamaCare, Stupak wants $578 million in pork

A day after Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Mich., and ten other House members compromised on their pro-life position to deliver the necessary yes-votes to pass health care reform, the “Stupak 11″ released their fiscal year 2011 earmark requests, which total more than $4.7 billion–an average of $429 million worth of earmark requests for each lawmaker.

Whether this is actually a buy off or not for their votes for ObamaCare, it looks like a buy off of Stupak and his cronies. Regardless, this is Washington, D.C. where corruption reigns supreme. Those Representatives and Senators, Democrat, Republican or Independent, that partake in earmarks (aka pork) when the nation is in debt, social security, medicaid, and medicare are effectively bankrupt, and the deficit is growing, merely confirm their own corruption and the need for them to be removed from office.