Monthly Archives: July 2012

Released illegals commit 19 murders & 142 sex crimes…

This, today from the Washington Times:

The Obama administration released illegal immigrants who went on to commit more crimes, including charges of 19 murders, 3 attempted murders and 142 sex crimes, the House Judiciary Committee said in a report Tuesday.

I guess the mantra, “if it will save only one life,” applies to taking away guns, not criminals…

This Olympics, remember an Olympian who fought Hitler twice

In Olympics And War — He Helped Beat Hitler Twice
Read more at lineofdeparture.com

This is a story from the 1936 Olympics. The one were Jesse Owens destroyed Hitler’s “Master Race” business by winning gold in the 100, 200, and 400 meter relay.

Foy Draper, part of the Gold-Medal team in the 400 meter relay, was lost piloting an A20 Havoc bomber on Jan. 4, 1943 over North Africa.

But note. Two members of his team were scratched and replaced the night before the race:

In one of the most shameful incidents in sports history, Stoller and Glickman, the only  Jewish-Americans on the U.S. team, were replaced by Owens and Ralph Metcalfe. There are several theories on why that happened, but one was that U.S. Olympic Committee Chairman Avery Brundage wanted to avoid giving offense to Hitler.

So we see that appeasement and politically correct idiocy are not new inventions.
The left has just perfected the art over the last 70 years.

 

Temparture stations under air conditioner exhausts…

Well well. So the climate data isn’t what Al Gore and the liberal media said it was. No. Can’t be! Say it isn’t so! Gore, the man who invented the Internet, and the media lied to us? Impossible!!

Here is the headline in the Press Release:

PRESS RELEASE – U.S. Temperature trends show a spurious doubling due to NOAA station siting problems and post measurement adjustments.

I’ve been telling people for months the stations used to collect temperature data were once located in rural areas but, with so much growth in the last 60 years, are now in urban areas. Concrete, asphalt, buildings, roads, cars, trucks, and homes all retain heat during the day and give it back at night—so the “average” is artificially higher than the true atmospheric conditions. The result is that temperature stations located in now built-up areas show an increase in temperatures since the 1970s far beyond what is real—indeed, fully twice what is real! One station is even situated in the exhaust air from an air conditioner! Ya think Gore would tell us about that?

But, look at this in the report:

· Well sited rural stations show a warming nearly three times greater after NOAA adjustment is applied. (emphasis supplied)

What was that?

What that was (is) is the current researchers have found that the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) has fraudulently tweaked data from those stations that did not match the exaggerated increases shown by the stations under air conditioner exhausts.

How’s that for hope and change? Temperature change, that is.

Kill those helping you. Brilliant.

Of note from the Associated Press and appearing at Military.com.

For the first time we have a rough number of people killed who were trying to help rebuild Iraq:

Navy Cmdr. Duane G. Wolfe was among the 719. He was not fighting the insurgency, but it was fighting him.

He was among the army of lawyers, engineers, contractors and others who paid a heavy price trying to put a broken Iraq and its shattered economy back together.

What in heaven’s name is up with killing people trying to put your country back together? We save you from a tyrant who had killed scores and this is what we get?

 

Obama envisions soldiers, not citizens, with AK-47s. But of whose soldiers is he thinking?

The man occupying of office of the President made the following statement:

“I also believe that a lot of gun owners would agree that AK-47s belong in the hands of soldiers, not in the hands of criminals.”

It strikes me as odd the President of the United States would mention an AK-47 and not an AR-15, one of the guns actually employed in the Colorado massacre.

What’s the difference? Why does it matter?

Here is the difference. The AR-15 is the civilian version of the M-16, which is the shoulder-fired rifle of our armed forces. Actually, most soldiers now use a shorter variant, denominated the M-4, which is functionally identical and only a touch shorter in barrel length.

The AK-47, on the other hand, is the shoulder-fired weapon of choice for the Islamic terrorists of the world.

And that is revealing, is it not?

Of whom is Obama thinking when he refers to a weapon in the hands of “soldiers”?

Might this be related to his comment, when asked, back in 2008, in how many states he had campaigned? Do you recall his answer?

The M-16/M-4 from Wikipedia.

M16a1m16a2m4m16a45wi.jpg

And the AK-47, also from Wikipedia.

Rifle AK-47.jpg

Should we revolt?

I’ve been thinking about folks who seem so easily disturbed by frank talk that they come to the mistaken conclusion that a novel that depicts a revolution actually endorses or promotes that revolution. I’m stunned by this inability do distinguish fact from fiction. On the other hand, perhaps this speaks to how real the story feels… Hmm…

In any event, I reprint below a snippet from a scene appearing in chapter 27 (out of 40). It illuminates my mindset. Res ipsa loquitur (the thing speaks for itself).

For over two hundred years American law had establish and maintained order in this highly complex society… [name omitted so as not to spoil the plot] thought back to the initial class discussions on property law and how the concept of private property ordered society. In the class on contracts he/she could see how every transaction in the business world, and even daily events, like going to the grocery store, are governed by law. The law of torts seemed to be all about legally enforcing the assertion, “You can’t do that to me, I’ve got my rights!” And even that had grown out of a regard for the well-being and property rights of others.

 

We had accomplished so much as a nation…

 
Despite its misuse by both sides of the political isle, [name omitted] reminded him/herself, the law still defined what it meant to be an American. It structured, governed, and guided American society as no where else in the world. The United States of America had become the embodiment of law in practice. Incompetence, malfeasance, envy, and hate notwithstanding, American law had become the world’s finest expression of justice, of fairness, and of man’s benevolent treatment of fellow man.*

* Note: the above may differ slightly, but not in any material respect, from the published scene as this comes from my writing software and changes were made in the production process.

 

The Aurora tragedy

John Lott has noted on Armed American Radio, with Mark Walters, that the movie theater was a “gun free” zone. These monsters are literally attracted to locations where they know that no one is going to shoot back.

Indeed, Mr. Lott has noted, virtually all the the mass (meaning more than three victims) have occurred in gun free zones.

Liberals seem to live in a fantasy land of thinking that putting up signs saying “no guns” will make the world safe. How on earth can they be so misguided? Can anyone explain?

Guns do make it possible for bad things to happen. But they cannot be eliminated, and taking them out of the hands of law abiding citizens is, to put it bluntly, akin to shooting ourselves in the foot.

 

The Confab over By Force Of Patriots; Is it Racist?

There is a guy over Amazon who, to put it mildly, dislikes my novel. Clearly of the Politically Correct crowd, he is unaware of the fact that he exemplifies precisely why I wrote the novel as I did. Naturally I’d like him to like the story, and I suspect had he read the whole thing, he might have (or at least he wouldn’t have spewed so much vitriol), but it is what it is and I shall make the best of it.

And arguably, he has done me a great favor by demonstrating for all to see exactly why my novel is so relevant. Still, I think it appropriate to write, here, some  things that my readers, with whom I do not have a personal acquaintance, might like to know. (I say this because my friends know without being told.)

I am neither a white supremacist nor do I approve of them. Upon reading By Force Of Patriots (the whole thing, not just the first 2 chapters!) you will discover that 1)  the bad guys are all white, and 2) two important (and good) characters are African American.

I would not ever write a story glorifying racists. But, they are in the story as they are in real life. I did the best I could to “get into” their heads so that I could vividly reflect their abhorrent ideas. Apparently, to the guy over at Amazon, I did perhaps too good of a job!

Yet, in a broader sense, the story also deals with race as it exists, today, in America. I try to express, give voice to, Americans who are upset with set-aside programs, Affirmative Action, and the like. Reverse racism, as it were. This issue is an important aspect of America, and so it’s in the story. I said this elsewhere on my site:

To put it bluntly, if some can be upset with racism, others can be upset with reverse racism. The two racisms are not equal, to be sure, as one subjugated an entire race, but to deny a voice to the lesser is to legitimize the former. And that enters the realm of tyranny… pretty much where we are today.

 

 

United Nations treaty to affect gun rights in America?

Surprise Surprise,

This from Fox and recently headlined on Drudge:

A treaty being hammered out this month at the United Nations — with Iran playing a key role — could expose the records of America’s gun owners to foreign governments — and, critics warn, eventually put the Second Amendment on global trial. Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2012/07/11/un-arms-treaty-could-put-us-gun-owners-in-foreign-sights-say-critics/#ixzz20KyB4wAp

Well, I was a bit ahead of this. The story in my novel tracks this. Here is an excerpt:

Big Sky News
Ninth Circuit rejects Heller
By Tom Bridger, BSN staff writer.

PASADENA, CA – It was a cool summer night in Seattle, Washington, when Frederick Jones returned home to find his wife on the living room couch, naked from the waist down, throat slashed, and oozing life. With her last breaths, Melinda Jones pointed to the bedroom of their 14 year old daughter.

Sounds coming from the bedroom made Fred Jones’s blood turn to ice. His daughter, Melissa, was gurgling as though cries for help were bubbling through a severed throat; her bed was creaking and the headboard was knocking into the wall in a quickly repetitive cycle. Fred Jones raced down the hall and recovered a .357 Magnum revolver hidden in a utility closet just outside his daughter’s room. He turned the knob on her bedroom door and rushed in.

A year later, Frederick Jones was convicted and sentenced to ten years in prison for killing Abdul Saeed with an illegal gun. Mr. Jones six-shot revolver violated a Washington law that prohibits guns from holding more than four cartridges or firing a bullet farther than 75 yards.

Mr. Jones’s appeal was upheld and today, in Jones v. Bouchard, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled, 10-1, en banc, for the State of Washington, agreeing that its “police powers” allowed its legislature to craft reasonable regulations on gun ownership to curb rampant gun violence.

Jones had argued that the 75 yard requirement would render the gun ineffective for self defense. He further argued that limiting guns to four or more cartridges effectively banned virtually every self-defense handgun in existence.

The Supreme Court’s 2008 ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller, had found that a ban on handgun possession in the home, as well as storage requirements that rendered rifles and shotguns inoperable for immediate self-defense, violated the Second Amendment’s guarantee that the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. In the case at bar, Jones argued, the facts were essentially identical to Heller; in both, the laws effectively banned armed self defense.

Two curious footnotes to the majority opinion appear to be aimed at providing additional grounds to support the ruling if, as is expected, the case is appealed to the Supreme Court. In the first, the Ninth Circuit indicated that Heller incorrectly read the history of the Second Amendment’s drafting, and that Justice Stevens “got it right” when he concluded there, in a dissenting opinion, that the founding fathers intended to protect only the military use of personal firearms. In the second footnote, the Court found it “persuasive that the United Nations Department of Disarmament Affairs has proposed exactly this type of limitation on gun ownership.”

The attorney for Appellant Jones, Frank Layton Jr., confirmed that his client would appeal. He said that, “The Supreme Court will see this scheme for what it is: an effective ban on self defense, the most fundamental right inherent in the Constitution.”
Wilber Terrapin, attorney for Washington state, said, “I think the court was impressed with Justice Stevens’s well-reasoned dissent in Heller, and further agreed that it’s wholly proper to utilize the opinions of international bodies to guide interpretation of the Constitution.”

Second Amendment scholar and firearms expert, Professor of Law David Couples, when reached at his office by telephone, noted that, “Any gun useful for self defense will of necessity fire a bullet much farther than 75 yards.” He agreed that states have a right, according to their police powers, to impose reasonable regulations on firearms. “But what’s reasonable,” he asked, “about requiring the use of something that doesn’t even exist, or if it did, wouldn’t work?” When asked about the court looking to the United Nations to interpret what our founding fathers intended when they wrote the Bill of Rights, Couples quipped, “it’s worthy of the mad hatter.”

To Rule Or Not To Rule, That Is The Question

This article originally appeared at American Thinker on July 7, 2012.

The airwaves and blogs are atwitter with comments about how Justice Roberts has abandoned the conservative ship and set sail to the “left” side of the vast oceans of judicial statesmanship.  I’ve heard some pretty venomous stuff coming from my conservative brethren, and it pains me — not only because I think we should stay away from such hostilities (not that I’ve always been serene, mind you), but more importantly because I believe they are wrong.

Imagine John Roberts had written something like this:

Yet cases may readily be imagined, in which a tax may be laid … upon motives and grounds wholly beside the intention of the constitution.  The remedy, however, in such case is solely by an appeal to the people at the elections;  or by the salutary power of amendment, provided in the constitution itself.

Folks would still be pretty upset.  Right?  After all, that’s pretty much what he said.

Would everyone still call him an activist judge?  A liberal in conservative clothing?

Probably.

But would you be interested in knowing who penned those words?  And when?

Might you want to know if the author was the most influential constitutional law scholar of the 19th century?  What if he was a man considered to be on the “strong federal” government side of the big government versus states’ rights political ledger?

Would you be surprised to know the man is Joseph Story, and the text, appearing here with very slight editing (I took out the phrase “or a treaty made,” and the corresponding “s” that made “case” plural), is in Section 374 of his seminal Commentaries on the Constitution (1833)?

The point I’m making here is that Justice Roberts penned a seriously courageous and brilliantly conservative opinion.

Yell at me and then, please, take a deep breath and hear me out.

That his words are courageous is obvious.  No dummy, he.  We all know that he knew that we would all scream like a stuck banshee.

But the other point — that his opinion is brilliantly conservative — ay, there is the rub!  And I’m going to get a few slings and arrows for this…but here goes.

The Founding Fathers envisioned three co-equal branches of the federal government.  Indeed, until the Supreme Court-decided Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. 137 (1803), the Supreme Court had never taken for itself the power to boss around the other co-equal branches of government.  Each branch was given specific powers we all know so well.  The legislative to write law.  The executive to enforce law.  And the judicial to interpret the law.  Easy.

The Founding Fathers knew that problems would abound if one branch tried to do two jobs.  Imagine the mischief if, say, the legislative was given the power to enforce the law, or the executive the power to write the law.  Aside from there being no “checks and balances” with such a system, the conflict of interest would be so great as to enable a tyranny.

Oh, wait.  That is what’s happening!  But that is another article.

Thus, the Founding Fathers gave law-writing ability to the only branch of government that was designed to be representative of the people.  And note the pains our fathers went to — representation by state and by population through two houses with intricate rules for passage of laws in, and between, each house.

And we might ask: why was law-writing ability withheld from the judicial and executive branches?  Well, the short answer is that neither was designed to be representative.  Neither was designed to give due consideration to all the nation.  The executive would clearly “represent” most closely the party that won the election, and the judges in the federal judiciary would “represent” most closely the executive that put them on the bench.

Only the legislative was trusted with law-making ability.

And here is where we run into problems.  What happens when the legislative writes a law that the judiciary thinks is beyond its powers in the Constitution?

If the judges like it, but find for it little or no support in the Constitution, they are, if unrestrained, likely to “create” a right– a constitutional right — and say no one may violate it.  Thus we have Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973) (women have a right to privacy in their bodies that no state may disregard with an anti-abortion law), the high-water mark, or at least the most famous case, of judicial activism.

Yet, can anyone find in the text of the Constitution a right to privacy in one’s body?  Of course you can’t, because it’s not there.  Roe simply created a right out of whole cloth.  Now, I’m not saying the policy is or is not sound, ethical, just, or whatever.  What I’m saying is that divining such a right from the text of the Constitution is to take on the job of the legislative branch of government.  It’s to wade into a social/political issue best left to the one body of government that is representative (I won’t get into, here, the fact that the power to grant such a right does not inhere in the Constitution and therefore is reserved to the states).

Moreover, the risks in wading into social/political issues such as abortion are outweighed by the benefits.  The court’s prestige, its image as a bastion of fairness, is severely weakened, society is fractured, law is set in stone for everyone, and one more thing.  And this will get us back to Justice Roberts.

This one more thing was brilliantly discussed by constitutional law scholar, professor, and dean of Stanford Law School John Hart Ely, in his seminal work, Democracy & Distrust, A Theory of Judicial Review.

Dean Ely explained a deeply disturbing aspect of judicial activism.  He asked, how are nine old and crotchety (my terms, not his) justices to even know the direction of the “winds of change” in society, and if they know them, how are they to ensure that they don’t contribute to them too much or too little?

Dean Ely advised justices to look at the process by which a particular law came into being.  Assuming the law is not a violation of the text of the Constitution, Ely would have the court examine that business of the House “deeming” the ObamaCare bill to have passed.  Ely would have likely been inquisitive of Nancy Pelosi’s comment that we must pass the bill to see what is in it.  Such breakdowns in the representative process would have certainly merited very close scrutiny.

Unfortunately, such a ruling would have still left everyone upset.  Regrettably, we have come to the point where the nation wanted a verdict on the merits of the law.

Professor Matthew J. Franck has incisively noted this aspect of American thought in Against the Imperial Judiciary; The Supreme Court vs. the Sovereignty of the People:

What is alarming is the degree to which ordinary citizens seem to expect that the Court will resolve the nation’s deepest political difficulties in a statesmanlike fashion;  citizens are pleased or displeased at the outcomes of hotly contested “constitutional” issues, but please or not they seem convinced that the Court is the right place to have them resolved. Id. p. 30.

And that brings us to John Roberts.

Just as Joseph Story advised in 1833, Justice Roberts eschewed the widespread American desire to have a definitive ruling on the merits.  He avoided a final resolution for good reason.

Imagine what America’s airwaves would have been filled with had he sided with the conservatives.  Likely, we would have “occupy” riots in every major city, at least.  The media (which is decidedly leftist) would be excoriating the Court…

At best, the prestige of the Court would be severely diminished for years to come.

I believe Justice Roberts knew all this, changed course from his initial desire to strike down the law in toto, and decided to take a process-based approach.

Importantly, and thankfully, he solidified the limits on the federal government to regulate through the Commerce Clause.  That was good and proper.  Even a process-based justice is allowed to look at the text of the Constitution and ask, has Congress done something that the text says it cannot?  Congress tried and was rebuffed.

And thusly did Roberts preserve the standing of the court in the minds of most Americans.  My hope is that this action will pay dividends down the road, when a case such as District of Columbia v. Heller (affirming that the 2nd Amendment applies to individuals) is re-examined by a more hostile court, as will certainly happen if President Obama is re-elected.

And just as importantly, Justice Roberts kept the Court from wading too deeply into this social/political morass that is ObamaCare.  He made clear the appropriate remedy, just as Joseph Story did 179 years ago.

Link

This site is a new experiment for me. Forgive me for its simplicity. I’m just getting it up and running.

Hopefully, you are here because of an interest in my newly released novel, By Force Of Patriots.

I’m happy to tell you that it’s available on Amazon.

An unnerving trailer is available here.