« Ruminations - 16mar2012 | Main | Ruminations - 20mar12 »

18 March 2012


Russ Steele

Remember Obama's Civil Defense Force that in Obama's own words "needs to be as strong as the US Military". Here is a 2006 interview of Rahm Emanuel, Obama's soon to be Chief of Staff, by Ben Smith of the NY Daily News on the role of Obama's Civil Defense Force:


It's the perfect way to control the people. A civil force that "posse comitatus" does not apply. Combine that with the patriot act and this Executive Order and you have a government controlled force with no restraints on your civil liberties or pesky warrants and private property rights.

Stay vigilant!

Alex Lowery

Nicely said sir. I fear he made this EO in preparation for the other shoe dropping on our economy, which I have been waiting for since 2008. There is also a looming war with Iran and possibly Syria. I also fear with this very early hot weather that we could have an extremely hot summer. Which could severely tax our energy grid, which should have been rebuilt after that bad blackout in 2003.

John Galt

As I read this EO, it appears to be a preparaion for war. I can see no other reason why is EO includes Sec 204 on "Chemical and Biological Warfare" (which by UN treaty the US has committed not to use.)

(I hope I'm wrong.)

I imagine that a pre-emptive strike against Iran by Israel or the USA will have consequences.

And China hacking our military electronics (Satelites, Drones, etc) might have influenced this.

--John Galt

John Galt

Clarification: ?I hope I'm wrong about the prospects of another war.

--John Galt

Douglas Keachie

Not to worry. They can't doany of this until this is in place, and that won't be, until 2013...


Douglas Keachie

"Stay vigilant! "

Shy of owning a totally self contained bunker built by now dead men, where are you going to run to? Watch with both eyes as whatever is out there eats you. It won't be dems, it won't be repubs, it will be the uber rich.

billy T

Well, this eo makes socialism look like a little girl's tea party with all her stuffed animals. No pun or reference to the Tea Party intended. Quite alarming. Sounds more like a dictatorship, like Nazi Germany or North Korea or Cuba. All these civil "servants" running around spying on us and armed to the teeth with the full weight of the Justice Department and all the force of the most powerful nation on this green earth. We already have the National Guards to deal with riots and looting and mobs that act like Occupy Oakland. The brown shirts are coming and they are not part of the Great Right Wing Conspiracy. I suppose the first shot fired (the shot heard around the conservative world) was when the new Administration labeled Neo Cons such as I and vets and non Muslim religious folk at the top of the list as domestic terrorists and the real threat to National Security. Glad they dropped the term Islamic terrorists and replaced it with Christian terrorists, or terrorists that cling to their outdated Judeo/Christian beliefs. Hey, granny got herself a double barrel ten gauge shot gun and we all know she is a bigger threat to us than Wacko or the Cuban kid that was returned to Castro. They already won't let Granny fly with her knitting needles and we all suspect Granny has some money stashed in her cookie jar for family emergencies. Be interesting for someone to publish a long list of democracies turned dictatorships and the little eo's that preceded the transformation. Think Hugo already put forth his eo before he started shutting down radio stations (fairness doctrine?) and making tiny little minor alternations in the Columbia Constitution such as pesky term limits on Presidents. Please, please, please somebody have mercy on my tortured soul and call me a "fear monger" or a paranoid racist. Or tell me they are waiting for "my kind" to all die off. Anything but deadly silence.

George Rebane

BillyT 547pm - I'd love to call you a fear monger, but I'm too busy trying to find an occasion when the "uber rich" were stupid enough to pauper the hordes of the consumers that made them "uber rich", and then continued to provide them goods and services to make their lives worth living. So far no joy.

Even the social justice elites of yore screwed up when they imposed income equality, because they found out that income equality workers don't make or do anything that made their lives worthwhile. The elites had to import the good stuff from socially unjust regimes that suffered under all kinds of income inequality. What a quandary!

Douglas Keachie

"and then continued to provide them goods and services to make their lives worth living. So far no joy."

I guess you just are not aware of the drop in standard of living experienced by most Americans. Life is not going on as usual, and most Americans are definitely beginning to feel what it is like to live out beyond the safety of castle moats, and in the swamps.

billy T

Mr. Keachie, some of us come from the swamps. Some of us only lived our entire lives only catching a glimpse of the castle in the distance, not to mention ever being inside the walls or crossing the moats. We prefer it that way, by choice. Sleep better at night under the stars and dreaming sweet dreams. But, those hordes within the castle side of the moats somehow believed a big lie. They actually believed they would be safe and sound and the King would feed and shelter them and they would always be dancing in the streets. But they lost all their self reliance and boy is reality ever coming as a shock to them. Got two bathrooms in one house? You are indeed house rich. Personally know any neighbors that literally starved to death? If not, then your neighborhood is food secure. May worry about a bunch of things, but you are food secure. Know how to improve your lot in life? No, then you believed the lie. The barbarians outside the castle walls do not worry about such things as a social contract or what the people do inside the walls. They actually disdain the arrogant peasants within the walls, which is most confusing to those protected by the moat and believing in promises instead of in their own grit. I like swamp people. They are happier.

Michael Anderson

Billy T, I think your dichotomy is artificial. I agree with you that those in the swamps are predominantly happy, and a majority of those behind the moats are messed up in lots of sad and twisted ways.

I just think it's more complicated than all of that. Lots of rich folk in the world are deliriously happy and lots of poor folk in this country are infinitely miserable. I think you have to take it country by country.

There are a lot of unhappy people in this country, both rich and poor, liberal and conservative, men and women, and young and old. We incarcerate about 600 people for every 100,000 in the USA, which is about 3 times as many as the next highest country.

Misery seems to be an equal opportunity employer in the United States. Why is that?

Those of us who have traveled the world have seen people living in the most primitive of conditions and they are much happier than the average American. Why is that?

I have hypotheses about this, but I will leave it here...

Douglas Keachie

Castle Moat #1 = home ownership
Castle Moat #2 = affordable and predictable health and dental care

These were the bulwarks as I grew up in the 50's and 60's and I expected them to be fairly secure into my old age, as my wife and I padded our larders well, and bought a house well below our means back in 1997, at a good price. Now, as I am exposed to more and more corporate scams, and watch a great many people well qualified turned away from work, because "there are too many and only just so many jobs," even at a significant cut in pay, I worry. Frankly nobody seems to be capable of doing anything constructive, neither Dems or Repubbys. We can't even get Obama to quit trying to police an area the size of California with 25,000,000 civilians with 160,000 troops, or 250 civilians for every 1.6 troops. My wife liked gardening, and now we will have to get serious about it. For the second time in my life I will have to consider Canada as a possible change of country. No, I didn't go there the first time Todd, I-Y, and neither did you go to Vietnam.

Account Deleted

Douglas K always provides us with the view from the left. He fears the uber rich. What are they gonna do to you, Douglas? Offer you employment? Let you enjoy the use of the museums and art galleries and libraries they gave you? Pretty scary. And then there's the "exposure" to corporate scams. Might have to say "no thank you". Gut wrenching, I must say. I am a little more fearful of the govt scams. Just try saying "no thanks" to them. The middle class in this country lined up by the millions to vote themselves into poverty. They voted for Oblabber to take their tax money at gun point and give it to folks that make more than they do. To make sure our energy costs "skyrocket".
I see the use of that executive order coming into play when the economy collapses. The Fed is destroying our currency and creating a bubble in the stock market. How much can the balloon be inflated? Depends on a lot of variables. I notice that even the Sac Bee is admitting there is a problem with various public pensions that won't easily be fixed. They used to dismiss such talk as "the right wing bashing public employees".
California govt can't print money and is currently limping along with "internal borrowing". I'm sure that sounds fine with the great unwashed, but it signals impending financial doom to me. The fed govt is currently bailing out Calif by allowing us to delay payments that are past due and handing us over 3/4 of the shake down money from the banks.
As a rule, the folks of this country tend to like things pretty comfortable and orderly and will sacrifice a lot to keep that. As long as the fed govt is careful to confiscate from a small percentage of the population and is seen to keep order and help out the ones that would riot otherwise, they may well be able to pull off this EO without massive unrest. For a time. After that, we enter new territory and all bets are off.

Douglas Keachie

That's the whole problem, Scott, they are NOT offering jobs. Instead they are cranking up the propaganda machine that goes around telling everyone taxes are bad, and pocketing the difference to feather their bunkers but good. Here's your Republican Job Creation furnace, in its present condition:

Wood Stove in the Snow  ****  IMG_6092Modified copy

billy T

Wake up on the wrong side of the bed, Mr. Keachie? Sure, we have big problems right now. Big ones. Massive debt and we can't be printing all that money without inflation rearing its ugly head. Impossible, but I may be in the tiny minority that has been concerned about that since 2008. They tell us that 7% unemployment is the new normal, so get over it. They tell us that 2% GNP growth is something to celebrate, so be happy. They announced today that the FED made 25 billion interest by buying the Fannie and Freddie mortgages. The next line is they lost 170 billion on Fannie/Freedie AND they need another 241 billion to keep them afloat. Folks slam the bailouts, yet the biggest bailouts went to Freddie's Fanny and nobody touches them, not even Dodd-Frank. Hmm. They are even allowed to pay a dividend and obscene bonuses. Yes, I heard that Medicaid dropped dental insurance. Tooth aches hurt like a mofo. Not fun. But its a great time to buy a house. Many houses under 150K and MacMansions under 175K. Interest rates are low. Think I may pick an abode up myself since it may be a once in a lifetime opportunity to get a home with 2 baths under 150K on a nice lot. We have discussed the job market and labor stats relentlessly. Many factors: moving from the industrial revolution to a service economy, technology, robots teaching robots to do your job, regulatory environment, cooperate taxes, etc. I agree that there will be jobs created in green energy. But, it is only one part of a huge economy, not the whole enchilada. Everybody to be hired to install solar panels on everybody's rooftops? Even if that scenario comes to pass, what happens when everybody has gone solar? The medical field is always hiring, but on line services is killing travel agents and even tax preparers. But the gist of your arguments is to tax the rich more and more, aka, the people with excess money are the root and cause of unemployment and the slowdown in the economy and the housing bubble/crash, why the Chinese are making Apple's I-Pads, etc. There are not enough rich people in the USA to make your life better or free from fear. Hey, today Apple announced it will dole out 98 billion in dividends, so the rich ( the cause of all my problems today) are paying it back. Unfortunately, Apple shares are vastly owned by evil institutional investors such as 401ks and pensions and CalPers, not the little guy. The rich get all the breaks. But, slamming the rich is totally PC. Its not like slamming gays, or women, or blacks, or the Irish, or Pollacks or people on the dole. Nope, the rich are just there and serve as a daily reminder of every conceivable ill (real or imagined) on the planet.

Douglas Keachie

If every household was a solar household, the cost of energy used in said household would not go towards fixing PG&E's corporate screwup of building pipelines way out of spec, as it is now, and would instead fall where it should, on the stockholders dividends, of BOTH of the PG&E's including the abusive parent that starves the consumer/business PG&E that 99% of the population believes is the ONLY PG&E. Such electricity would be available for charging the electric cars, and pumping back into the grid. This would help Everyperson's household budget. This would also deprive terrorists of easy large power station targets, and be a strategic asset for the defense of the country.

Was it the rich or the poor that made the decisions that derivatives, and subprime mortgages, and shipping all the jobs to the far east was a good idea?

Have you looked at Congress lately, through a wealth filter? This is large so that you can read it:

FinancialWealthCongress copy

billy T

Doug, now we are way off topic and I hope we don't get scolded. This is the only site (besides Mr. Steele's old site) that I have never been booted off. Ok, if everyone went solar and green and paid zero energy bills, what good is that if you don't have a job? Its like when I was living in my van down by the river and a kind woman gave me a toaster and microwave out of the abundance of her caring heart. No electricity, but I thanked her anyway after she insisted I take them. Point two is the millionaires in Congress AND the millionaires in the Cabinet. Oh, I could bash Congress for hours for exempting themselves from the minimum wage laws and the American with Disabilities Act and hostile work environment laws and Charley Rangle for writing the tax laws and then dodging them, and little poor ole Tiny Tim G (our Treasury Sec) for trying to write off his kid's summer camp as an education expense...blah, blah, blah. We (or some of us) elected the members of Congress and them not being homeless is a plus. Sure, a lot of them filed bankruptcy in the past, but even Abe Lincoln and Max Foster of Foster Farms went broke before getting it right. A fellow once told me "if you want to learn how to make 2 million, don't hang around with those that only know how to make a half a million." In all honesty, he was taking about mentors and living productive lives (not finance) and used that as an example which got seared in my mind. Sure, we have health care problems, which is why Congress is exempt from Obamacare. I guess I just refuse to bash the rich. By government standards, a NYC cop married to a NYC school teacher are millionaires if you take the Al Gore approach by adding the phrase "over 5 years". Everything now is calculated as over 5 years or 10 or 20 years or the cost will be xxxxin 2045. I had my own brush with our health care system today. Been having some plumbing problems and old saw bones told me "I had to pass it so he could find out what is in it." What a card. Guess he was quoting Botox Nancy P, another millionaire. I finally have something nice to say about Nancy. At great personal sacrifice to herself personally, she included the Botox tax in Obamacare. She is truly a man among women.

Douglas Keachie

I'll take Congressional health care over Obamacare any day of the week, wouldn't you? Excellent example of high class socialized medicine for the rich, with lifetime benefits. If summer camp isn't educational, you're wasting your kid's time at the wrong camp.

billy T

IRS shotdown Tiny Tim's deduction. See Doug, I agree that summer camp is educational, but the rules in this case say it ain't. It was not music camp or math camp. It was good old fashioned camp. Hey, we can't have the taxpayers' subsidize rich peoples' summer camps for their kids, now can we? Think Tiny Tim got in a small droplet of hot water because he owed unpaid taxes for several years, not summer camp as such. He cut a 50k check and let the rest ride for a few years of IRS nasty grams until the Senate hearings. A smart highly educated man such a Harvard professor should not be bothered with mundane things like paying taxes within 5 years of the due date. He has more important things to do and the rules do not apply to him. Just like Uncle Charlie. Perhaps that is why the new job of choice is being a czar. No pesky confirmation hearings or pulling out skeletons in the closet. Hey, I tied this in to the topic of Dr. Rebane's New Executive Order, finally.

Account Deleted

Well, the original topic here was the EO just issued by Oblabber invoking all sorts of dictatorial horrors. But Douglas claims to be afraid of the rich as they will "expose" him to free choices and "crank up" a propaganda machine that will offer a difference of opinion to his. Taxes are bad? Douglas will have a hard time finding an example of the uber rich saying that, but his imagination constantly finds backup for his fantasies. Then there is the naughty PG&E. This is a govt controlled monopoly - hardly an example of free market capitalism. They are under the dictates of the govt and the govt is under the control of a man that promised that "under my plan, electricity rates will sky rocket". Of course, we should all have solar panels. Where the money will come from to buy and install and maintain the panels is not Douglas' business. It comes from the candy tree in lollipop land. Just look out for the evil uber rich, they come in the middle of the night and - wait for it - won't give you a job!

Ben Emery

National Defense Resources Preparedness was first put in place with Clinton, then Bush, and now Obama. I opposed all three and is a big part of why I refuse to belong to either corrupt political party that has been on a 30 year assault of the US Constitution among other problems.

The power grab of the Executive Branch and Judicial Branch over the last dozen years is very dangerous and needs to be pushed back by the people. Starting with Bush v Gore

Sandra Day O'Conner has publicly voiced her regret for ruling on this case and for ruling in favor of Bush. Thomas should have recused himself since his wife was working in the Bush campaign. If all votes are counted Gore wins


Ben Emery

Unitary Executive Powers are dangerous no matter who sits at the head of the Executive Branch.

My facebook post today

Today is the anniversary of our illegal 2003 invasion of Iraq. Since then over 1 million Iraqi's have died due to this invasion. Nearly 5 million are displaced. That is 6 million that are either displaced or killed. The population of Iraq is 30 million, which makes 20% of the population are either dead or displaced. That would be equal to 61 million Americans either being killed or displaced. I cannot even imagine what destruction/ chaos has been caused by the US led invasion of choice in 2003.

Those responsible in the Bush administrations need to be indicted and convicted for these crimes. Here are five violations of international and US law that were committed.

1) invading a sovereign nation
2) use depleted uranium
3) use white phosphorus
4) use of MK 77 (modern day napalm)
5) Abu Ghraib (torture)


I consider President Obama the owner of the policies he inherited. There is a grace period to actively reverse them and he failed to so. I think many in the Obama administration should be held accountable as well.

Douglas Keachie

Leona Helmsly should be the Republican figurehead, not Reagan.

Leona Helmsley

billy T

Thank you Mr. Keachie for sparing us and not posting a full body shot of Mrs. Helmsley. Her gold bra is better left to the imagination. She is quite a character. Heard a story that once at the racetrack, she accidentally ripped up a winning 2 dollar ticket. It was the odds on favorite, probably paying $2.10-$2.30 The millionaire stayed late after the race pouring through hundreds of littered tickets on the ground searching for her 2 dollar ticket. A woman like that usually comes from poverty and many a childhood night going to bed hungry. Even knew a woman slightly younger than me that defended Leona to the hilt. She thought is was a man vs woman conspiracy, how she did nothing wrong and was being persecuted for being a successful woman. Then the woman disappeared. About 9 months later I got a knock on the door. It was the FBI and they were looking for my friend. Told them I did not know where she is now, but last I heard she joined Green Peace and after that I heard she was in the nut house. Boy, did she like Mrs. Helmsley. Always wondered if they ended up sharing a cell. Unsolved mysteries.

Ben Emery

Leona Hemsley married a millionaire (Harry Hemsley) nothing to brag about and her behavior was one of a sociopath. I guess in a Ayn Rand/ Atlas Shrugged worldview she was a producer of society. You know, a spoiled human being that inherited money from someone else then proceeded to view those who had less than themselves as being parasites. What a messed up prism to see the world.


"What a messed up prism to see the world."

Ben, I'm sure you've completely missed the irony in your post.

billy T

Ben you are on to something. I always wondered about my friend. If she wasn't so good looking and voluptuous I probably would have never talked to her in the first place. My friend was a messed up woman, a taker, and habitual liar. But, when you said "sociopath" it all clicked. Not sure the exact established definition of sociopath, but I know it has something to do with a person who takes things without remorse and has little to no empathy for others. A psychopath usually deals with people (like murder) and a sociopath deals with possessions (like thieves). Both have no conscience. I would be most hesitant to bring up of our members of society who are beyond social norms as examples of Republicans or Democrats or Independents in reference to policy. Maybe some of the Occupy Oakland crowd, but their actions speak for themselves. They just like to get high and smash things. Oh, to be young again.

Brad Croul

DHS was created by Bush. The current head of DHS is a former governor and also former attorney general of Arizona. What are you guys afraid of?

George Rebane

One of the prime reasons an autocrat can start on the road to totalitarianism is that people will not believe it's happening until they come for you. This comment thread is a perfect illustration of this notion. Obama's backers will talk about anything except the subject and portents of the new EO as it applies today.

Add to that the recent reports of SWAT-armed contingents now being acquired by more federal departments than one can shake a stick at, and the just announced Dept of Homeland Security's procurement of 450M rounds of 40 cal ammunition, and one need not be a rocket scientist to know what this country's government is afraid of the most. Hint: it is not ragheads. (All of these and more have been covered in a timely manner on RR.)

Brad Croul

George, ICE also has access to the ammo. And the ammo is not all ready to ship. it is a multi-year contract. Besides, what is wrong with having too much ammo? And, as far as I can tell, 40 cal ammo is a handgun load. Also, the boys and girls need target practice.
Ever read any of those police reports of some perp being shot by the cops? There are usually multiple clips fired by multiple officers - they waste a lot of ammo.

The President's Cabinet includes "the Vice President and the heads of 15 executive departments — the Secretaries of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Labor, State, Transportation, Treasury, and Veterans Affairs, as well as the Attorney General." -whitehouse.gov

From the EO,

Sec. 701. The Defense Production Act Committee. (a) The Defense Production Act Committee (Committee) shall be composed of the following members, in accordance with section 722(b) of the Act, 50 U.S.C. App. 2171(b):

(1) The Secretary of State;

(2) The Secretary of the Treasury;

(3) The Secretary of Defense;

(4) The Attorney General;

(5) The Secretary of the Interior;

(6) The Secretary of Agriculture;

(7) The Secretary of Commerce;

(8) The Secretary of Labor;

(9) The Secretary of Health and Human Services;

(10) The Secretary of Transportation;

(11) The Secretary of Energy;

(12) The Secretary of Homeland Security;

(13) The Director of National Intelligence;

(14) The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency;

(15) The Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers;

(16) The Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration; and

(17) The Administrator of General Services.

Notice any overlap between the two lists?

Please show me where in the EO you think the President islolates himself with his new "guard".

George Rebane

BradC 547pm - please read carefully the conflict resolution section of the EO.

Brad Croul

Sorry, I could not find it. I searched the text for "conflict" and "resol".
I assume you understand that the EO is about defense production, or Natural Defense Resources Defense Preparedness, keeping the machinery running you might say, and not internal civilian "crowd control" or "martial law" preparedness.

Ben Emery

Much of this stuff started under the Bush administration and those of us who opposed it on principled reasons used the example of the next Executive Branch using these same powers. Now that President Obama is in office democrats remain silent as the leader of their party commits the same crimes. Many people I marched with against the occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq have become silent. Vice versa many people who exploited the US flag and patriotism during the Bush administrations now condemn the Obama administration for the same policies. Political Parties create loyalty to the wrong causes. In 2010 our campaign put an exclamation point on this fact by the fact many people who agreed with our issues couldn't vote for a candidate outside their political party. Party before country sets up the stripping of our civil liberties by dividing the people.

George Washington Farewell Address

"I have already intimated to you the danger of parties in the State, with particular reference to the founding of them on geographical discriminations. Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party generally.

This spirit, unfortunately, is inseparable from our nature, having its root in the strongest passions of the human mind. It exists under different shapes in all governments, more or less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy.

The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty."

George Rebane

BenE 1044am - I am not aware of anyone of the conservative/libertarian bent who is driven "to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual... ." It is the primarily the collectivist that in times of strife and stress has sought such solace.

Ben Emery

You're kidding right?

I am talking about the US, especially in the last 15 years. Have you ever heard of
1% doctrine (Bush/ Republican controlled congress)
Torture (Bush/ Republican controlled congress)
Patriot Act(Bush/ Republican controlled congress now Obama)
FISA Act (Bush/ Republican controlled congress)
Suspension of Posse Commitatus (Bush/ Republican controlled congress now Obama) Secret Prisons (Bush/ Republican controlled congress now Obama)
Suspension of due process (Bush/ Republican controlled congress now Obama)

and the list goes on and on.

This has nothing to do with liberal or conservative and has everything to do with the pursuit of expansion and retaining power through the apparatus of political parties. The leadership in both the Republican and Democratic Party's represent the same interests and those interests are not the people, it is neither conservative or liberal but rather a Plutocracy. It is about the centralization of capital and power. Its about keeping the masses divided and loyal to their parties/ teams allowing the stripping of our liberty to happen right in front of us. Knowing the power of our pride to be part of the winning team will override our responsibility to our nation for far too long before we will unite. I think we are on the brink of uniting once again to overthrow the tyrants we have in our nation, which has become global. Justice is rarely balanced but it will take over once again resetting the negative feedback loop.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
Benjamin Franklin signing of Declaration of Independence 1776

ps I strongly encourage you to read "The Fourth Turning" by William Strauss and Neil Howe.

George Rebane

BenE 1045am - and your point is??? Please reread my post. If Sam makes the sword, that doesn't mean that Harry can't use it to do evil. You seem to be straying off the existentials as they exist in 2012, and portend for the succeeding years.

Ben Emery
Bonnie McGuire

Lots of interesting opinions here, but Billy T you get first prize for your very colorful writing that really paints a picture. Can't help but laugh and love it. You certainly revived some memories of the road Germany took...described by a former resident of Germany who left just before WWI started. He and his wife were our music teachers when we were kids.http://www.mcguiresplace.net/Franc%20and%20Louise%20Wanda%20Luschen

George Rebane

BenE 950pm - I don't think that conservatives/libertarians willingly give up any liberties for central government without a thorough examination of what the social return is, and that includes matters of security, domestic and international. As a conservetarian, my approach has always been that government is guilty until proven innocent. That is the obverse of what the Left believes.


I don't think libertarians have ever signed onto granting more powers to the government than those granted it by the Constitution; however, it is a Constitution, not a suicide pact. The disturbing excesses of the post 9/11 era are, I think, a groping for a path for defense of the nation in an era where terrorist acts and not armies are used by foreign actors to harm the US.

The way to ratchet back wartime powers is to stop the warring. The Gulf states would have been fighting amongst themselves rather than against the USA if we'd not decided to be the world's policeman.

By fortune of huge natural resources, the USA is sitting on centuries of fossil fuels and the technologies to extract them, both natural gas, coal, oil shales and even petroleum at the bottom of the list. US oil production is up only because extractions on private lands are up so much that the decreases of production on leased public lands under the Obama administration are compensated. Reverse that and see what happens.

Brad Croul

Regarding EOs and the President getting permission from Congress to do anything and everything, does the President have to get the permission of Congress before he can push "The Button" and launch nukes?

Here is a link that speaks to what George seems to be getting at (spoiler alert: It did not start with Obama The Immigrant Socialist)


Todd Juvinall

Obama is an immigrant socialist? Is that true BradC?

Ben Emery

North Star Libertarians wouldn't sign on to the list of policies I gave above. But the leadership of the republican party would and do so aggressively. That is my point, we don't have representatives for the American people but special interests that have accumulated way too much money and influence in our government. This includes labor unions just as much as corporate power such as front groups like ALEC. http://www.alec.org/

We need to remove this centralized/ accumulated wealth (capital/ infrastructure) out of our government and the way to do this is create a law that only those who are able to register to vote can donate $200 to their candidate of choice. Shutting the revolving door between lobbyist and government.


Ben, the more reformers try to get money out of politics, the more money is spent on politics. If you want less money spent on influencing state and federal offices, give officeholders less money to spend, it's the only way to reduce their price on the open market.

As PJ O'Rourke said (quote from memory, don't quote me), "When buying and selling is determined by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators".

Unlimited donations to candidate campaigns by individual citizens and legal residents of the US, immediate public disclosure of the donations on the web. Simple. Freedom, what a concept.

billy T

As the encroaching tentacles of government continue to reach into every aspect of our lives, one has to wonder when regulation ends and compulsion begins. Here is an interesting take on Obamacare, but its larger implication is of uncontrolled government. http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/obamacares-rewriting-of-contract-law/2012/03/23/gIQAVuFmWS_story.html

Ben Emery

You need to ask yourself how and why our government has become so invasive into our lives. Who benefits from the DHS? It is not the people but the security industry. I don't think it is a coincidence that the TSA scanners being used are products of former DHS head Chertoff new employer, Rapiscan Systems. Cronyism at its worst. http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2010-11-22-scanner-lobby_N.htm

Who promotes regulation? Big business is the number one pusher of regulations pricing out small and medium size competitors. As our government becomes more and more corrupt the number of regulations grow.

Take off the R's vs. D's goggles and see that both parties are servants of big business and the wealthy. Self governance isn't about libertarianism but rather everyday people representing the interests of their region and the nation as a whole. We need to get big money out of our government and we will see waste reduce dramatically.


"Self governance isn't about libertarianism but rather everyday people representing the interests of their region and the nation as a whole."

Not even close.

Todd Juvinall

I always get a giggle when people like BenE talk about the American people in regards to politics. I guess the 100 million who voted in the last election were not the American people? At every level of American life there are busy people involved in politics. They are involved in many other things as well. Heck, the folks at our churches are also volunteers at many other civic endeavors too. Making the community and the country stronger. They are Americans I think. I don't recall seeing BenE at a Friends of Nevada County Military packing parties. Maybe I am wrong but I see Americans there. Most (if not all) are not liberals. The liberals are outside the door to the packing party with protest signs. (the was hyperbole, sorry). Anyway, the liberal whines about the people all the time yet the liberal is a puny percentage of the country's people. I respect BenE's run for office but it was never a very serious one at all since the "people" preferred the opposition, those evil democrat and Republican partys.

Ben Emery

Please explain then what self governance the founders and framers are talking about. Did they want no government? One of the most contentious arguments was about standing armies in times of peace, funny thing since one of the only forms of government libertarians embrace is the military. Please enlighten me on the intent of the framers/ founders. I will leave you with this idea to get the neurons in your brain firing. Please read through the writings of Thomas Paine.
Paine is considered one of the main contributors behind the American experiment.

"That the common people...that Americans could be citizens and not merely subjects. That people had it within themselves not only to listen to their superiors, but literally to speak to each other and deliberate and govern themselves." Thomas Paine

You are an ignorant fool who proves over and over again that you are a useful tool to those who believe they are power brokers in the area. The question is how do those 100 million of people decide who to vote for? Through a corporate owned media that are the main beneficiaries of the huge amounts of money spent during campaign season, thus always creating a horse race to extend the campaign. A vast majority of the $5 billion spent in 2008 elections cycle was private money that came from special interests. My $200 donation doesn't get me a whole lot of influence. But the bundlers and now the secretive Super Pac's from the financial sector will get a seat at the table in the writing of legislation and the ear of those who advise the president and our so called reps. on what types of legislation that will be submitted.

Todd Juvinall

Wow, I have never been called a "useful tool: so I am honored?

No BenE, I live in realville, you live in your mind. I am sure those "evil" corporations you buy your gasoline, food, and sundry items just crack up when they see you purchasing their stuff. Corporations are just a gathering of real humans in a legal format. The stockholders of those corporations are real humans as well. I think you lefties are simply confused. Please BenE, I asked you how it is you think you can speak for the American people when you tell us what is best for us. How is that possible?

Paul Emery

Yes Todd

You live in "realville" for sure. You actually believe the Reagan myth that he was some kind of economic savior when astually all he did was triple the national debt and that Lee Harvy Oswald acted alone and that the war in Iraq was fought because of WMD's. I can go on and on. A "usefull tool" might be an overstatement. I think you're more of a utensil-kitchen variety type-like you buy from county fair barkers.

Todd Juvinall

Why thanks PaulE. Typical liberal response. What a hoot!


"Please explain then what self governance the founders and framers are talking about. Did they want no government?"

Truly bizarre, Ben. Why do you think the Constitution is antithetical to libertarianism/classic liberalism?

"That government is best which governs least." - Guess who? When the government governing by the Constitution does just what it is authorized to do, there is plenty of freedom left for the self-governance of citizens.

The comments to this entry are closed.