"It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds." Samuel Adams
Sunday, January 21, 2018
Yes, it's a nice idea designed to foster a sense of camaraderie and bipartisanship, but I believe it's time for the Senate's 60 vote rule to be jettisoned. Why should everything come to a grinding stop in the name of empowering the minority? The constitutional means for acquiring power is called an election, not Senate rules. I haven't taken time to look for it in the Federalist Papers, but could it be that the designers of our government understood that requiring anything more than a simple majority was a prescription for continual gridlock. Perhaps this is why they authorized the VP to vote in the event of a tie. So even though it could hinder the conservative agenda when the Republicans once again lose the majority (which is inevitable), I say, "Let the chips fall where they will." The current situation is a grotesque display of incompetence and irresponsibility on both sides. Not only that, it is an embarrassment to the good people of our nation.
Friday, January 19, 2018
After a year, I have made my decision about President Donald J. Trump. Before I say what I think, however, let me first say that I consider all Tweeting and all talk of Russian collusion, obstruction, impeachment, 25th Amendment, and sexual harassment to be mere noise, like static on a radio. Static doesn't change the content of the broadcast, but it does distract from it and make it harder to hear. This is why I pay absolutely no attention to these matters. I only care about what the president actually accomplishes. As I see it, the only thing that will be able to stop Donald Trump from serving out his full term is either a heart attack or an assassin. It will not be a senatorial conviction for having committed "high crimes or misdemeanors."
So what is the actual content of the broadcast? In other words, what has he actually accomplished? A year ago I told several friends that I will be happy if Trump does four things: 1) shuts down the southern border, 2) decimates ISIS, 3) puts a strong anti-abortion conservative on the Supreme Court, and 4) eliminates Obamacare. On that basis, I am fairly happy, though clearly there is more to be done. For example, funds for the wall need to be allocated and the rest of Obamacare needs to be zapped. But these are on Congress, not Trump. He will sign the legislation if they pass it.
A few other accomplishments that have added to my happiness are lowering my taxes, pulling out of the Paris climate accord, approving the Keystone pipeline, eliminating funding for abortions in other countries, putting the kabash on TPP, making Jim Mattis Secretary of Defense, and making Mike Pompeo head of the CIA. I am also happy that he has shown himself to be a deal-maker and not a dictator. He has shown that he respects the role of Congress, even though I'm sure he has been quite frustrated at time with a few of his fellow Republicans.
Sunday, November 26, 2017
Article I, Section 2.5 of the US Constitution states: "Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member."
I don't know what Roy Moore did 38 years ago. Some of the accusers seem credible, yet a lot of their details have been shown to be inaccurate and impossible. I do know what Al Franken did, since we have a photo. But I can't see how the Senate can expel a properly elected Senator for something he did before he served in the Senate. I realize that the last portion of the above referenced passage from the Constitution seems completely open-ended, but is it really? Isn't it actually an extension of the thought that comes immediately before it? In other words, if a member exhibits "disorderly behaviour," the Senate can "punish him," or with a vote of 2/3, "expel" him. Under what line of thinking would a man's conduct before the voters sent him to Congress be considered "disorderly behaviour"? Aren't the voters the judge and jury? If the people of Alabama find Roy Moore to be the man they want representing them in the Senate, how do the other 99 members get to throw him out? And I would also argue, how do they get to throw out Al Franken?
To date I have not heard any of this discussed in the media. Everyone seems to just assume the Senate can throw a man out of their elitist little club for any ole reason at all. To me, that seems constitutionally dubious.
Historically, the Senate has expelled one man for siding with the Creek Indians against the government and several for siding with the Confederacy. That's it. So I guess treason qualifies as "disorderly behaviour." But all of these treasonous behaviours took place while these men were in office, not long before they faced the electorate.
Another point: I am disgusted with how quickly the GOP Ruling Class convicted Roy Moore and started trying to throw him overboard. I don't know what he did or didn't do, but I'm for letting the people of Alabama pass the verdict. And frankly, I would hope that people would not judge me today by some of the really stupid stuff I did in my early years. Men can grow and mature and develop better character. To be honest, the very fact that McConnell et al are so desperate to keep him out of the Senate causes me to think we really need him in there.
Friday, November 3, 2017
As the bodies continue to pile up, I feel it's time for Congress to enact some common sense truck control. First of all, we need to immediately initiate universal background checks on anyone attempting to rent a truck. In addition, there should be a three-day waiting period. I think it would also be reasonable to limit the size of gas tanks and remove the muffler so people will be able to hear the truck coming at 'em. I'm also quite sure that the trial lawyers would support a proposal to hold truck manufacturers liable for the death of anyone killed by a truck, especially if it's a high-powered truck. As for the young man who drove the truck in the recent NYC attack, he deserves to be deported and allowed to reenter the country at least four more times before he is forced to stand trial. On the other hand, the cop that shot him ought to be charged immediately. I maintain that if these common sense measures had been taken before before the NYC event, there is no telling how many lives might have been saved.
Thursday, October 12, 2017
- Baltimore (620,000 people) has had more murders this year than NYC (8.5 million people).
- Baltimore has a higher murder per capita rate than Chicago.
- Colorado has the highest rate in the nation of marijuana use by teens (of course you have to be 21 to buy it).
- The number of fatal traffic accidents in Colorado involving drivers testing positive for marijuana has doubled since 2013.
- The Boy Scouts now admit girls.
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
"Michelle and I have been disgusted [past tense, suggesting they are not disgusted anymore] by the recent reports about Harvey Weinstein [not by Weinstein himself or his behavior, but only by the "recent reports." A subtle by important distinction.]. Any man [this is not about "any man", it's about a particular man] who demeans and degrades women in such fashion needs to be condemned [but far be it from them to actually condemn him] and held accountable, regardless of wealth or status. We should celebrate the courage of women who have come forward to tell these painful stories [such as Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey, and Juanita Brodderick?]. And we all need to build a culture — including by empowering our girls and teaching our boys decency and respect [Does this mean we should stop allowing children to watch the garbage pumped out by Hollywood, which is the chief purveyor of sexual promiscuity and deviancy?] — so we can make such behavior less prevalent in the future [they want to make it "less prevalent" but have no desire to totally eliminate it.]."
Are the Obamas really unaware that the culture they say needs to be built once existed in America? It is their buddy Harvey Weinstein and his immoral comrades in Hollywood who are largely responsible for dismantling it over the past 50 years. Taken at face value, the Obama's statement says nothing and makes no direct assertion about or condemnation of Harvey Weinstein. BHO is truly the master of uttering words without actually saying anything. I'm sure his still hoping to get his money-grubbing hands on some of Weinstein's filthy lucre down the road after all the fuss settles down.
Monday, October 9, 2017
Monday, June 26, 2017
We have all heard many times that Trump is not an ideologue, that he doesn't think in terms of ideology. Rush in particular says this a lot. In contrast, Trump is practical and thinks only in terms of what, in his judgment, would be in the best interests of our country. This caused a lot of my conservative friends to be quite negative about electing Trump. I confess that I too was nervous about it; but I always figured that rolling the dice with Trump was far better than getting a sure thing with corrupt Hillary. Well, it seems to me that we have increasing evidence that what a smart, successful businessman thinks is in the best interests of America is very similar to conservative ideology. Duh... Either that, or Trump is in fact an ideological conservative.