Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Lesson of Rosa Parks: Stay Seated!

In March of this year, I wrote a rebuttal to a heavily-biased editorial by James Preston Allen, an alternative newspaper columnist and Progressive apologist based in San Pedro. He reported that the recently-installed commemorative statue of Rosa Parks in the Capitol Building was an embargoed story, meaning that the Washington press corps wanted the commemoration delayed.

The statue was significant for San Pedro residents because the sculptor Eugene Daub and his collaborator Rob Firmin. The greater significance for me, enough to write a response letter, incited me to consider what she would think of President Obama, Progressive policies, and how they have affected African-Americans today.

In summary, I wrote:

"Rosa Parks would shout: ‘President Obama, stop putting my people in the back of the bus!’"

That meme "Stop putting my people in the back of the bus" means so much to me. In this life, there are always those who are trying to disturb us, trying to deceive us into give up our place of peace in the front seat of life, where we sit and rest easy.

Their derisive response followed:

We feel so very assured that an old [sic] libertarian white guy from Torrance can accurately channel the spirit of Rosa Parks so as to speak for her from beyond the grave. Honestly, we just don’t know how you are able to do it. Did Rosa come to you in a vision to explain just how disappointed she was in the first black President?

Let me tell you about this Spirit, one which a preacher called "the throne attitude."

He preached from the Psalms:

"The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool." (Psalm 110: 1)

Often we are tempted to solve our problems when times get tough. We act as if we must do everything or nothing will happen. When things do not work out the way we want them to, we assume that more action on our part will get everything working the way we want them to.

I have since learned to stay seated, just like Rosa Parks.

Lao-Tzu, a proto-libertarian Chinese philosopher once shared:
"I practice doing nothing, and people transform themselves."
When we recognize forces greater than ourselves at work, and working in our favor, we stop striving and start thriving. The very problems which seem so great become nothing as they melt away.

Christian mystic Blaise Pascal wrote:

All of man’s misfortune comes from one thing, which is not knowing how to sit quietly in a room.

When we learn to take it easy, and stop acting as if the world revolves around ourselves, we rest, and everything works out for the best.

Calvin Coolidge, the US President who did very little while the country and the economy roared into recovery, placidly shared:
Four-fifths of all our troubles in this life would disappear if we would only sit down and keep still.

Why was he able to keep calm in the face of pressures without and concerns within? He offered the following advice:
Our government rests upon religion. It is from that source that we derive our reverence for truth and justice, for equality and liberality, and for the rights of mankind.

We do not need more intellectual power, we need more spiritual power. We do not need more of the things that are seen, we need more of the things that are unseen.

When we trust in what we do not see, we find that rest is as easy as can be.
Adam Smith described the Invisible Hand of the marketplace, which balances supply and demand without government coercion. Jean-Baptiste Say declared: "Markets Correct if you let them." Stanford Professor Thomas Sowell entitled one column: "Don’t just do something, stand there!" He was writing about economic recovery. Instead of massive government interventions, which confuse market signals and instill greater uncertain for businesses, government should cut taxes, spending, regulations, and all other frustrating efforts.
The same Spirit which animates free markets, makes the world go round, teaches us to believe and act on what we do not see. Know and believe that all things work for good to those who believe.

As a substitute teacher in an inner city school, I covered a science class in which the permanent teacher never showed up. The students copied pages and answered questions from the textbook. Frustrated and bored, tired of writing answers which contributed nothing to their grades or their learning, they acted up. Once they started a paper airplane war. I simply said "Not at this time."

Then five students began drumming vehemently on their tables, hoping that I would get alarmed and try to stop them. I understood their frustration and let them bang away, just as long as the rest of the students could get their work done.

After five minutes, they stopped. I won.

Have the throne attitude, people! Stay in the front seat, like Rosa Parks, trust that the Spirit moving all things is in charge, and watch your problems disappear.
Let go and let the Spirit flow!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

About Trayvon, What Would Dr. King Say?

Civil Rights Movement must rise up in response to the “unjust” Zimmerman verdict. Following twelve days of deliberation and fifty-six witnesses, a jury of six persons exonerated Zimmerman, man of Anglo-Hispanic heritage. It was a just verdict.

Instead of heeding the irreverent civil rights race-baiters like Al Sharpton, who lies bluntly, or Jesse Jackson, whose urge to merge and need to screed has diminished his integrity, we should consider what Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. would say about the Zimmerman verdict, and today’s status of African-Americans.

First, Dr. King would remind voters that in previous decades, most white people were never indicted, let alone convicted and incarcerated for willfully killing black people. Back then, white lynch mobs would preen for cameras following their savage murders of black people, brazenly smiling because they knew that no white jury would convict them.

Then King would recall the trial of the “Scottsboro Boys”, in which a white judge set aside a corrupt guilty verdict, knowing full well that the nine young African-American men did not rape a white woman of dubious reputation and loose morals. A white lawyer defended the nine defendants, and shortly after black men began serving on Alabama juries. Perhaps King would then remind everyone about the tragic slaughter of fifteen-year old Emmett Till, a forerunner of young Travyon Martin, who was killed by white supremacists in Mississippi for whistling at a white woman. Fifty years later, prosecutors filed charges and indicted the men who killed that child. He would talk about OJ Simpson, a wealthy African-American athlete tried for murder, yet not convicted.

In his “Letter in a Birmingham Jail”, King commented that in his time blacks still had to beg to get a cup of coffee at the local dime-store. Today, blacks are celebrated entrepreneurs, including Earvin “Magic” Johnson, whose investments helped save gang-riddled, irrepressibly corrupt Compton from epic stagnation. Of course, Herman Cain ran Godfather’s Pizza, and we have black leaders in our courts and in our statehouses, including Deval Patrick of Massachusetts. We even have a black President (even though his policies have put more black people “in the back of the bus” than any white President).

Instead of crying about racism and victimization, King would say: “We have come a long way!”

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Coolidge's Take On Obama

From the outset, Obama’s vanity has clouded his judgment and has frustrated the very political and economic systems he has attempted to help. World leaders love him, yet ignore him. His policies alienated constituents, even in Democratic strongholds like California and New Jersey. Yet through it all, Obama has clamored to the public forum, convinced that if he articulated his vision more clearly, if he could only make his mission manifest to the small minds of the American People.

President Obama's grandstanding speeches underscore his repeated failures. Rather than looking to the rhetorical flourishes of Ronald Reagan, the Republican Party and the nation ought to heed to quotable President Calvin Coolidge, an oft-overlooked executive who presided over an unprecedented period of economic growth.

In evaluating the elitist, statist, activist arrogance of the Obama administration, President Coolidge would say: "When a man begins to feel that he is the only one who can lead in this republic, he is guilty of treason to the spirit of our institutions."

Obama has evinced in a number of ways this spirit of self-regard condemned by Coolidge, from the outrageous horde of unaccountable bureaucratic appointments, to the legislative shenanigans and backroom deals that thrust "Obamacare" on an unwilling public, to extensive financial bailouts to irresponsible lenders and financial firms, to the fiat corporate take-over of General Motors. Obama has never hesitated to marginalize Congress, the Constitution, and even his constituents to further his Progressive paradise of Big Government as Big Brother, Broker, and Bondsman.

The 30th President would have no trouble pinpointing the failures of the 44th President. Yet what can we learn from Coolidge about prospering prosperity in a country fed up with merely hope and change? How did President Coolidge help turn a near-moribund economy into a prosperous one following a horrendous world war? He didn’t! He got out of the way. Columnist Walter Lippmann opined that Coolidge's genius lay in “effectively doing nothing”.

"The business of America is business," Coolidge is often quoted saying. Not the government, but a free market economy spurs recovery, prosperity, and innovation.

"The people cannot look to legislation generally for success."

Coolidge vetoed handouts to suffering farmers, yet the economy still flourished. Obamacare, the proliferation of regulatory agencies, czar-appointments unaccountable to Congress, stimulus spending, extension of unemployment benefits: none of Obama’s public hand-outs and shovel-ready projects have stirred the economy from its anemic stupor.

"Government cannot relieve from toil. It can provide no substitute for the rewards of service. It can, of course, care for the defective and recognize distinguished merit. The normal must care for themselves. Self-government means self-support."

Coolidge never dismissed the role of government for the needy, but certainly not for everyone else. Alarmingly, the number of needy, dependent, and dispossessed grows under Obama in the wake of ballooning entitlements, shrinking revenues, and impending budget shortfalls. Rather than aiding and abetting the growing constituency of dependents, the United States needs an executive who fosters a steady weaning from the public teat, reinforcing the value of “self-government” as “self-support.”
"If all the folks in the United States would do the few simple things they know they ought to do, most of our big problems would take care of themselves."

Rather than looking to the government to solve our problems, which it has failed to do, the American people need to focus on their local needs, trust to their individual efforts, and effect purpose in their own communities. Not depending on one’s neighbor, however rich he may be, to bail you out when times are tough. Not expecting the government to provide for every worker who would rather hold out his hand for alms instead of put his hand to the wheel and work.

"Don't you know that four fifths of all our troubles in this life would disappear if we would just sit down and keep still?"

If the Obama Administration stopped spending, regulating, managing and controlling, adjusting, crediting, adding, subtracting, debating, deliberating, and changing the regulations, businesses would hire; workers would work, and earners would take home more pay. The panic-induced rush by Obama’s Beltway bureaucracy, from insurance mandates to short-term tax cuts, to billowing red-tape, all foster a deadly atmosphere of uncertainty, the very bally-hoo that frustrates investment, stalls industrial growth, and puts off economic recovery.

"This country would not be a land of opportunity, America could not be America, if the people were shackled with government monopolies."

From General Motors to global banking firms to Wall Street, Obama has diminished the alacrity of trade at the expense of wasted investment in green technologies and flighty distribution of wealth, which only spreads unemployment and poverty.

Aside from his laissez-faire approach to governing the United States, President Coolidge was well-known for frequent press conferences and few public speeches. “Silent Cal” once beat a journalist in a bet, when the commentator attempted to get more than two words out of him. “You lose,” Coolidge calmly replied.

While Obama talks a lot and does too much, Coolidge said enough and did very little. Would that Obama possessed Coolidge-like laconism instead of left-wing loquacity.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

God the Father Holds You in His Hands

"31And in the wilderness, where thou hast seen how that the LORD thy God bare thee, as a man doth bear his son, in all the way that ye went, until ye came into this place." (Deuteronomy 1: 31)

Even in the most desperate and desolate of times, know and believe that the LORD your God loves you.

Never look at your circumstances, but always look at the Cross, where Jesus died for you and as you, that you would receive His righteous standing before God the Father:

"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 4(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;" (2 Corinthians 10: 3-5)

What was accomplished for us at the Cross, in full?

"For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father." (Romans 8: 15)

And then

"Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not." (1 John 3: 1)

 And of course:

"Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world." (1 John 4: 17)

You see, Beloved, you are in Christ, so you can rest assured that your Father in Heaven is carrying you through every storm, every trial you may face.

While Satan wants you to be distracted by what is going around you or within you, just bring every thought into captivity to this truth:

I am a child of God because of Christ Jesus, and I know that my Daddy-God is carrying me through it all!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Overpaid California Pensioners? Enact Wisconsin Reforms!

The highest paid pensioner in California held numerous offices in the city of Vernon.
Why is anyone surprised? Vernon is a city of many business interests, yet few residents, with little oversight in a state which has ignored the growing financial problems associated with granting generous benefits and retirement packages to its public employees, both at the local and the state level.

Instead of reporting with shock and surprise that another highly-salaried and well-paid public official has played the system, media leaders and state representatives need to promote the same pension and collective bargaining reforms instituted by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and his Republican colleagues.

Following two successful elections, including an attempted recall, public workers have abandoned their unions, and the unions have lost all political clout. Cities and school districts are saving money, and Wisconsin has no outstanding pension obligations to worry about.

Why can’t California do the same?

Congresswoman Karen Bass: What Would Rosa Parks Say?

Parks would say
to Rep. Bass:
"Stop putting my people
in the back of the

Earlier this year, the House of Representatives honored the Civic Rights leader Rosa Parks with a commemorative statue in the Capitol. I wonder if Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Culver City) took the time to visit the unveiling and share her sentiments.

Seated in peaceful poise, Rosa Parks rests amiably, looking ahead, not worried about the future. The bronzed legacy of this woman who blazed a trail for civil rights is remembered for what she would not do: give up her seat on the front of a Montgomery, Alabama bus after a long day of work. Despite the repeated demands of the bus driver for her to move back, she refused, was arrested, then aroused enough outrage to organize the final, and successful boycott of the Montgomery bus line.

Following the shameful uproars in reaction to the Zimmerman verdict, and Rep. Bass’ shameless pandering with young Trayvon’s photo on her Twitter account, Ms. Parks would feel less peaceful and more distressed, upset that a legacy of respectable demonstration has given way to violent frustration among African-American civic leaders and those who heed them heedlessly.

Congresswoman Bass, you are one of those civic leaders. You blame racism in American society, claiming that the ill-repute which justified putting blacks like Rosa Parks in the back of the bus then still lingers today in our country. You claim, as do racially-driven activists like Reverends Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, that there is no justice for black people, that white America is responsible, and the Zimmerman verdict is proof.

What would Rosa Parks say about the Zimmerman verdict?

First, I believe that she would applaud the American Criminal Justice System because prosecutors indicted a man of mixed heritage for the murder of a young black child, while decades ago, most blacks were routinely lynched by rabid mobs. Oftentimes, white rioters would pose with the bodies of the African-Americans whom they had murdered, because they knew that no white jury would convict them. Parks would likely recall the untimely death of young Trayvon Martin with the wicked slaughter of young Emmett Till of Mississippi, a fifteen-year old African-American boy who was brutally murdered for whistling at a white woman. “We have come a long way!” Parks would say. I also believe that she would respect the verdict handed down by the jury, in large part because the state of Florida was willing to spend twelve days with fifty-six witnesses to investigate whether George Zimmerman had committed murder or had merely engaged in self-defense.

Yet leaving behind the Zimmerman verdict, the notion of latent racism which erupts in our country still animates civil rights activists to act uncivilly in the public square. Perhaps, Rep. Bass, you would argue that African-Americans still endure the hardships which Ms. Parks had to put up with.

Let’s compare the time when Parks refused to give up her seat with the present-day plight of African-Americans. . .

Parks was tired, Congresswoman Bass. She was tired of being told where to sit. She was tired of the disrespect which she and others of her race had endured for so long. She was tired of being told what she could and could not do. She was also tired of what she could make, as well. She was tired of giving into a lie that she had to put up with disrespect because of her skin color.

What would Rosa Parks say today about African-Americans today?

Parks would say they are worse off because they see nothing but grievance and racism behind every verdict which exonerates a non-black person in the death of black person. She would also be disgusted by modern-day African-Americans who trumpet racism and victimization, all while the enable the same in black communities to this day.

She would call out the Democratic hegemony of these racist leaders, then remind everyone that it was the Democratic Party – the party of slavery, secession, and segregation -- that had been persecuting black folks. Parks would be appalled that African-Americans have flocked to the Democratic Party, not just because of the history, but their current policies, many of which you support, Rep. Bass, along with the first black President, Barack Obama. These policies place blacks at a greater disadvantage than any white President or white supremacist in the last fifty years.

She would indict the Obama Administration, because today blacks suffer twice the national average of unemployment. Black youth like Trayvon face 50% unemployment. They suffer in poor public schools, they live in ghettoes riddled illegitimacy and dependency, subsidized by welfare dollars. Blacks are not shiftless and lazy, but Democrats have become limitless and crazy in telling everyone what they can do, what they can make, and thus force blacks to sit in poverty and stagnation.
In light of these disturbing trends, what would Rosa Parks say, Rep. Bass?
She would shout:

“Stop putting my people in the back of the bus!”

Instead of pandering to sentiments of racism and victimhood, Rep. Bass, stop supporting destructive Democratic policies which hurt your people. Stop lying, stop pandering, and allow every African-American a chance to choose where they sit.

California and Rhode Island: Two States in a Bad State

Why does a California Conservative insist on dishing on politics in Rhode Island? He has not yet set foot in the state, but he would love to visit and share a cup of cocoa with Rhode Island crowds, if they let him. Some think that I am a “crazy evangelical in a cult”, that I should mind my own business in my own state.

Some think that “goLocalprov” has lost its bearing in letting “a right-wing nut” contribute.

Frankly, even though I have not visited the Ocean State, as a resident in California I have recognized that both states face the same state of dependency, political turmoil, and economic malaise. In a sense, I feel that I practically live in Rhode Island, since the same political and cultural plaguing my state mirror the upheavals in Rhode Island, although not as badly (so far).

Let’s get the obvious differences out of the way for the sake of argument. California is the largest state, taking up nearly one thousand miles of oceanfront property along the West Coast. The rugged terrain in the North, the deserts in the South, and the refreshing sea breeze for South Bay residents like me cannot depict a more disparate geographical landscape. California residents can experience all four seasons in the same month, if they wanted to. Still, Californians have shared that the most temperate climate wafts its way in my neighborhood. Are you jealous?

Rhode Island is the smallest state, at least in terms of geography (Wyoming has the smallest population). Rhode Island experiences all four seasons during those seasons. Deeply connected to US History, Rhode Island was one of the Original Thirteen Colonies, the first state founded on absolute religious toleration, the last colony to ratify the United States Constitution. California is the thirty-first, birthed in a fraught compromise which kept the South from seceding ten years earlier. And California was founded on the quest for gold following Mexico’s defeat in the Mexican-American war. Rhode Island has Roger Williams; California has Aimee Semple MacPherson. Both filled with the Spirit, so to speak, one was kicked out of Massachusetts, while the other founded churches established in the Charismatic Movement.

Now let’s consider generic comparisons. Both states have great beaches and great food. We love to eat ice cream, but Californians would rather spoon some flavored Greek-yogurt and let the Rhode Islanders take the Number Two spot for ice cream consumption. We both have a rich immigrant heritage, one which first represented Southern European communities, yet which has now shifted toward a heavily Hispanic cohort.

Our states are currently governed by sons of former governors. As of now, both Governors are Democrats (Oh Brother!) More importantly, both fathers were Republicans. While Edmund “Pat” Brown became a Democrat following the rise of FDR and the New Deal, John Chafee remained true to his party, then his son Linc became Independent before joining the Democrats.

Both states have a supermajority Democratic powerbase in the statehouse. California lingered with a strong, anti-Democratic Republican minority, which was able to block tax increases and rate hikes. Rhode Island has suffered with Democratic one-party rule for eighty years, and counting. Still, both states now have nothing but Democrats in every statewide office, yet once in a while both states elect Republican governors to restore order. Both of our House Speakers are openly gay, and voters like me are not “gay” about their being in office. California speaker John Perez served himself and his interests as a state assemblymember, and before that he represented Los Angeles union interests. Gordon Fox represented union interests as he entered politics with the Democrats, and he beat Perez as the first openly gay Speaker by one month (Yawn.)

Both states have struggled with state-wide, public sector pension problems. David Boies, the attorney who represented Rhode Island and counseled General Treasurer Gina Raimondo, first helped out the Bay area city of San Jose, California, located in Silicon Valley, where voters overwhelmingly approved massive pension reforms, despite heavy campaigning by the public sector unions. San Diego also passed an initiative to curb pension obligations, yet remains in legal limbo following strenuous appeals from union interests.

Both states still contend with a heavy union presence, one which intimidates voters with lies and distortions in order to prevent meaningful tax and spending reforms. Both states have huge welfare populations. While California has the largest, with one third of the country’s recipients, based on scale and proportion I would imagine that Rhode Island handles a comparably similar number. Both states struggle with bad schools, in which union interests have superseded the public interest, and especially the students’ interests. Both states have powerful teachers associations which prevent long-term, meaningful reforms. Both states are following the regressive-progressive model of tax rich and pay everyone else: i.e. government workers.

No wonder Travis Rowley described California as “One Big Rhode Island.” At least now I can write that Rhode Island is “A Mini California.” Here’s to a robust resurgence of freedom, liberty, and recovery for the Golden State and Ocean State, a comparison I would like to see.

Walker's Reforms Deserve Attention

Governor Scott Walker is an effective, effervescent reformer, one which the Republican Party should support and champion as much as possible for the next two election cycles.

His remarks regarding a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants are pragmatic, but for the sake of politics and propriety, Walker must recommend, as should all Americans, that the United States permit state government to defund tax-supported subsidies, as well as authorize public schools and medical facilities to require proof of citizenship before anyone can request their services.

Regarding Walker’s budget-repair reforms, they deserve greater attention than his views on immigration.

While Rhode Island and California face bankruptcy because of overzealous public sector unions and their overgenerous pensions and benefits, states like Wisconsin have not only enacted long-term solutions to their deep budgetary problems, but have also enfeebled one of the most entrenched and frustrating interests groups in state-level politics: the political arm of public sector unions, which would buy campaigns for accommodating candidates, who in turn supported lavish benefits, kickbacks, and broadened autonomy for the unions, all on the taxpayers’ dime. Well-informed and well-invested Wisconsin voters rejected the sclerotic, incestuous relationship benefited the few and well-connected at the expense of everyone else. Now that unions must request membership every year, more public workers are opting out of the dubious and unreliable representation which in the past they were forced to accept.

Congratulations once again to Walker, his party leaders, his legislative colleagues, and Wisconsin voters who elected him twice in two years.

About Prop. 30 "Bait and Switch"

Parents in the Palos Verdes Unified School District are upset because their students will face large class sizes next year. Despite the secured funding for public schools following the passage of Prop 30, schools with larger populations of English Language Learners and underprivileged students will receive more money at the expense of wealthier districts.

One parent felt “bait-and-switched” into voting for Prop. 30.

I can only say: “Told ya so!”

The notion that Sacramento leaders would appropriate the new tax dollars appropriately is laughable yet predictable. That was never going to happen. The state legislature has a history of spending tax dollars on interest groups and political agendas contrary to the best interests of the state’s residents and the business class which forms the essential prosperity of our state.

If anyone was “bait-and-switched”, it was the voters who refused to recognize the truth, yet voted for the tax increases anyway.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Real Justice for Travyon, Rep. Bass, and all Black Youth

National protests are demanding “Justice for Trayvon”. Instead of picketing in the public square, Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Culver City) has posted a picture of young Travyon in a red shirt on her Twitter Account.  If the people want to leave a better, instead of a bitter legacy for this boy, and all African-American youth, they can start by leaving the case alone and letting the tragic memory of Trayvon Martin rest in peace.

 Next, African-American leaders like Congresswoman Karen Bass must expose and explain the rampant pathologies in many African-American communities. Drugs, violence, gang-banging, broken families define the childhood of too many black youths, and Trayvon Martin was no exception to this sad yet lingering legacy. Instead of demanding justice for Trayvon in a court of law, black leaders need to demand a better culture and upbringing for black youth today in all courts: whether in the home, or at school, or in the greater world.

Let’s consider the home life of Trayvon and many other black youth. The young Florida resident was born into an illegitimate family, where the parents were not married. If Rep. Bass wants to promote justice for young black youth, she should start by investigating the break-down of the black family in the United States. Why are there so many black children born out of wedlock? Home come must young boys do not even know who their father is? Congresswoman Bass, can you explain to your constituents why more than half of black children are born in single-parent homes?

Then there’s the schooling that most black youth endure. Rep. Bass, would you like to explain why so many children suffer in substandard schools in your Los Angeles/Culver City district? Perhaps you would also like to explain to your voters, and the rest of the residents in Southern California, why you and your party resist school vouchers, school choice, and a better education for all youth. The first step towards improvement in this life must focus on a good education. For most black youth, they do not feel safe, let alone certain about the education they hope to get in the inner-city schools. Instead of standing up to young children who already lack discipline, structure and character because of their broken home life, school officials enable minority youth’s sense of victimhood and entitlement with feel-good history which does them no good at all. Public standardized testing is an insult students’ potential, as well as their skills, and instead of a healthy dose of critical thinking, schools embrace multiculturalism, feeding empty self-esteem pabulum to children instead of loving them and holding them to a higher standard.

File:Karen Bass 113th.jpg
When will Rep. Karen Bass support
reforms like school choice?

Then there are the failures that minority youth face in the world at large. How many youngsters drop out of school rather than suffer through the substandard, unsafe, and unreal education of their local schools? The life of drugs and gang-banging offers excitement and easy money, much more than barely getting by with a diploma which means next to nothing. Without fathers, without role models, black youth enter the world with little idea of what to expect, and much to fear. Having no identity or security, they try to create both on their own in their beaten-down and crime-infested neighborhoods.

Instead of coddling feelings and enhancing a race-based sense of grievance and entitlement, Rep. Bass, why don’t you provide the black youth in your district proper African-American role models? Tell them about Frederick Douglass, who demanded that  the government allow the black man to stand on his own. Tell them about Booker T. Washington, who refused to cave in to racism mired with intellectual grievance. He went from share-cropper to University Trustee, without a smidgen of guilt or entitlement.

Educate young black children about Edward Brooke, the first popularly elected African-American US Senator. Yes, he was a Republican, and to this day he is not ashamed to say so. He never ran for office based on his color, but always on his character. “You can believe in Brooke” was his campaign slogan for the US Senate. Reflecting on his life, he offered the following advice to young black children: “Get a work ethic.” Not gang-banging, not hustling, not a life based on casual sex and improvident choices, but working. “There are not easy paths to success,” Brooke then shared. He also told them to be brave: “Your place is anywhere you want it to be. You make that decision. It’s left up to you.”
Justice for Trayvon starts with cultural changes
Not protests and public agitation

If Trayvon Martin had followed Sen. Brooke’s advice, he would not have gotten suspended from school for ten days. He would not have been smoking pot, wandering around in a dark, unknown neighborhood. Instead of a violent death (one all too common for black youth), he would have grown into a strong man, making his way in the world, choosing his place.

If you want “Justice for Trayvon”, Rep. Bass, stop playing the race card of grievance and victimhood, all too common in the black community. Promote policies which strengthen the black family, improve their education, and help all black youth make it in this world.

Thank You, Pastor Ken Hutcherson

God bless Pastor Ken Hutcherson and his bold preaching!

Finally, black preachers are calling out their black congregations for seeing everything in their lives through then lens of color, instead of the cleansing of Jesus Christ.

For decades, the black community has been deceived, and I believe willingly, to accept that every time a black man is killed by someone who is not black, or every time a black man is accused or convicted of  crime, he is in fact innocent, and just the victim of a world run by white racists.
Nothing could be further from the truth.

Furthermore, I am tired of black civic leaders using every crime and circumstance to drum up race-based hatred.

Trayvon Martin was walking at night in a different neighborhood, high on marijuana, according to autopsy reports. George Zimmerman, a Sanford, Florida resident of diverse ancestry, suspected that he was a criminal, or engaged in some dubious activity. The altercation that followed, in which Trayvon attacked Zimmerman, ultimately led to the boy's death.

George Zimmerman pulled the trigger. Yes, he killed the young man. Does that mean that he was profiling the kid, or that he was racially motivated? Not at all.

In fact, from the evidence on the ground, and following the forced prosecution of the man, the testimony and the deliberation all led to a verdict of "Not Guilty."

It's time for black people to stop looking at every tragedy which involves the death of a black man as proof that racism is still prevalent in our society. I loved what one preacher shouted: "stop looking at the world through your black eyes, and start seeing everything through the blood of Jesus."
Not a man's color, nor his character, but the contours of the Finished Work of Christ Jesus make all the difference in this life.

Not just the black community in general, but black churches in particular, have got to stop making race the prime issue, and get back to Christ and Him Crucified as the central tenet of faith, family, and every good and perfect gift.

Thanks again, Pastor Hutcherson, for preaching the truth. Tell everyone, black and white:

 "Stopping putting Jesus in the back of the bus! Stop making race, color, creed, and even religion more important than Jesus, who is all, has all, and has done all for us!"

Democratic Policies Have Kept the Black Man Down

For decades, the accepted political discourse has argued that black people are being put down by the force of racism in American Society, by conservatives (based in this country's legacy of slavery), and the Republican Party. These indictments are fatuous in too many ways to count.

Let’s start with the term "black." What does that mean? Young dark-looking children (in order to avoid using the term "black") live in South Los Angeles, yet many of them do not consider themselves African. Of Belizean descent, many of them view their primary ancestry with South America. Other men and women of African descent come directly from African countries, or from the West Indies, or other nations. Those individuals from the West Indies espouse different cultural and ethnic values unlike the those born and raised in the United States. The issues which make all the difference touch on class, not on race. Class has more to do with their skills, traditions, and values learned and appropriated over time. West Indians descend from ancestors raised in nations with a slave past, too, much like the United States. Yet unlike American slavery, West Indians had to grow their own food and engage in their own business practices to care for themselves because there were not enough white people to keep them dependent. The American slavery system was based on keeping slaves incompetent and dependent as much as possible, a legacy still present today.

The connections between the slave past and the impoverished present for blacks depend on this connection of dependency. However, academics still posit that the demise of the black family started with American slavery, because the peculiar institution would permit a slave master to break up married slave couples. Oftentimes, an ordained minister would read "till death or sale do you part". Slavery was an evil blight on American History, one which was removed with great political turmoil and bloodshed. Yet the notion that the primacy of the mother in black families today stems from the demise of the family in Ante Bellum America has neither style nor substance to its argument.

Yet race-baiting activists today would charge that the legacies of slavery still persist in our communities. The facts are much different. From the end of the Civil War until the 1920s, black communities thrived in spite of prejudice and Jim Crow. Celebrated African-American academic Thomas Sowell reminded his viewers in one episode of "Firing Lines" that the literacy rate among African-Americans exploded from nil to fifty-percent from the end of the Civil War until the early 1900s. This massive transformation of success and growth was not the result of government action, by the way, but in spite of government repression, since Jim Crow de jure segregation was rigorously enforced against African-Americans, and not just in the South.

Institutional racism or affirmative action cannot limit a man's capacity to improve his lot. In fact, Sowell later discovered that in societies with persecuted minorities, those same individuals may lose key political privileges, yet their traditions and skills promote them to quality jobs and financial success. Such was the case for the Chinese in Malaysia and the Lebanese in Sierra Leone (and Mexico, where the wealthiest man alive, Hugo Slim, is of Lebanese descent). The same holds for the United States, where African-American statesmen like Booker T. Washington refused to feel sorry for themselves, in spite of share-cropping and de jure discrimination. Booker T. Washington succeeded through hard work, established universities, and even advised Presidents.

Regarding Republicans and conservatives as the source of black repression, the first African-American activists were Republicans, not Democrats. The argument that the Republican Party has been the source of black repression for one hundred fifty years ago is just not true. The first popularly-elected Republican US Senator was Edward Brooke of Massachusetts. Currently, the only black US Senator is Republican Tim Scott of South Carolina. Recently, Elbert Guillory, state senator from Louisiana, joined the Republican Party, along with Ralph Washington, a city councilmember from Central City, Louisiana. As State leaders of African descent in the South are switching to the Republican Party, minorities in Washington number greatly with conservative causes.


Then what has caused the breakdown of the black a man and his family in our generation? Not slavery, not past prejudices, where Civil Rights Movements pressed against the indoctrinated cultural hatreds yesterday; not the Conservative movement or the Republican Party. Look to the Democratic Party, and you will see the cause. From Woodrow Wilson, who purged blacks from the White House, to Democratic President Lyndon Baines Johnson, who said: "We’ll have those n-ggers voting for us for the next two hundred years", there we find the policies which advanced state-sponsored welfare, which enabled failed education systems, which bolster race-baiting minority politicians, which have harmed African-Americans. As the government increased its handouts, expanded welfare, and enabled individuals to remain dependent instead of growing in grace and prosperity, so African-Americans have suffered instead of prospered.

Thankfully, Lyndon Baines Johnson's invidious prophesy has become short-lived by one hundred fifty years. Today, African-Americans are experiencing a turn for the better.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Obama is No Trayvon

Never letting a crisis go to waste, or an opportunity to express his vanity, President Barack Obama declared: “Trayvon Martin would have been me thirty-five years ago.”

Barry Obama grew up in a mixed, academic family. He attended elite universities and organized communities for political gain. There is nothing in President Obama’s past that would link him, let alone set him up for any fate like the late Trayvon Martin.
President Obama should be ashamed of himself for injecting himself and racism into the Zimmerman aftermath. Los Angeles radio host Larry Elder, an articulate (yes, articulate!) black man has denounced the racial demagoguery following the verdict. So has established, celebrated African-American neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson of Johns Hopkins University. Instead of caving to and stirring up prejudice, President Obama should follow Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s example: respect the rights of protesters, but demand their respect for law and order.

Obama Would Never Have Been Trayvon

Never letting a crisis go to waste, or passing up an opportunity to promote his self-regard, President Obama injected himself into another media-hyped frenzy, claiming after the Zimmerman verdict: “Trayvon Martin would have been me thirty-five years ago.”

Let’s assess this outrageous, vain presentiment.

Born in Honolulu, Hawaii (nothing like the urban ghettoes of Detroit or Chicago, his corrupt political home) Barack Hussein Obama (earlier known to his friends as “Barry”) was born to a mixed couple with heavy, academic roots. His father, a rabid Kenyan anti-colonialist, likely bred into his son a hatred for white America, or the West. His mother was an academic writing a PhD, gaining knowledge (or what passes for learning in universities these days). While Sanford, Florida is no ghetto, the suburb of the Southeastern United States are nothing like the perennial wealth and splendor of the Hawaiian islands. Aside from the elite attorneys motivated by race and money, Trayvon’s parents have nothing like the background of Obama’s elite ancestry, immediate and distant.

Raised in private schools (including Indonesia), Barry excelled in elite universities like Harvard, where he edited the school’s Law Review. Like many black students, Trayvon almost certainly had to suffer in an impoverished, incompetent, and dilapidated public school. President Obama resists school choice for black students, yet he insists that his two daughters attend the most elite private schools available in Washington D.C.

In Chicago, where Barack Obama first taught constitutional law, colleagues remarked that he rarely spent time with other professors to discuss key issues, so convinced was he that his views were right, and everyone else had to learn from him. In this respect, Barry has a lot in common with Trayvon, since the insolence of adolescence often leads youths to think that they have the world figured out, until they step into the real world, with its real problems. In the same sordid public schools, most students like Trayvon never learn about their rights or the reasons for exercising them. Much of the time, they receive a watered-down, race-based narrative which teaches students, especially minority students, to feel sorry for themselves and view anyone with power or authority either with suspicion or derision. Usually they cannot discuss anything of merit, so busy are they prepping for standardized tests which do nothing for them, but promote their schools to statewide bureaucrats.

As a community organizer, petitioning for poor and run down communities (even though he was living the high life), Barry religiously adhered to the teaching of Saul Alinsky, whose work Rules for Radicals was dedicated to the first radical, Lucifer, the archangel with two offices, the messenger of Light who forsook all to challenge God, and as a consequence was kicked out of heaven, taking in his falling wake one third of the heavenly hosts. Trayvon got suspended from school for ten days because school officials found traces of controlled substances in his backpack. He was walking suspiciously in a neighborhood by himself at night wearing a hoodie. The only community organization Travyon ran into was George Zimmerman, who was protecting his community as part of the local “Neighborhood Watch” program.

So much for “community organizing.”
Barack Obama had a middling career as a state senator in Springfield, Illinois. His most frequentl vote, like the most popular college major, was “present” or “undeclared.” He ran for the US Senate in 2004. The incumbent Republican, Patrick Fitzgerald, weighed his chances, and new that since he was not running against another corrupt politician (the first African-American female US Senator Karen Mosley Braun), he would not be able to catch the winning vote a second time. The Republican who stepped in to take Fitzgerald’s place, Jack Ryan, polled behind by double-digits, and bowed out soon after. From growing up to raising a fuss in the streets to running for office, Mr. Obama never really worked a day in his life. Trayvon did not live long enough to enjoy much, let alone work. Yet even if he survived his adolescence, Trayvon likely would not have gotten a job, since half of black youth cannot find work in these difficult, economic times.

President Obama has fulfilled the dream which many African-Americans did not think possible: A black man in the White House (Funk rockstar George Clinton once rapped about painting the White House black, but nothing else). This first black President, who has followed the example black statesmen like US Senator Edward Brooke (R-Massachusetts), Supreme Court Justices Thurgood Marshall and Clarence Thomas, along with Cabinet Leaders Condoleeza Rice, has declared that there is still a deep, latent race problem in our society. What retired General Colin Powell called a “dark vein of intolerance” has become an ingrained vanity born of ignorance among minority elites, a dangerous trend which has transformed the tragic death of a young child in a Florida suburb into an overplayed drama. President Barack “Barry” Obama has injected himself (and racism) into the Zimmerman Aftermath, claiming that who he is today would not happen if he had been walking around in a hoodie on a dark February night in Florida.


Friday, July 19, 2013

About "California Comeback" in "Random Lenghts News"

When I read “The California Comeback” on the cover page of the latest edition of Random Lengths News, I didn’t know whether to laugh or plan a summer vacation in Hell, because Hell must be freezing over for anyone to claim that California is coming back under the current “progressive” policies.

Proposition 30 raised taxes, and it also razed businesses. Nineteen companies have pulled up stakes and left the state on account of the tax burden, not made more burdensome, because of Prop 30. In El Segundo, for example, Raytheon is moving its headquarters to Texas. Toyota’s automotive plant in Gardena has moved to Michigan, where “right-to-work” laws will allow businesses to thrive, and workers to survive without being forced to join a union or pays automatic deductions which automatically benefit tax-and-spend Democratic union supporters.

Frankly, Governor Jerry Brown should receive (light) applause for his “progressive timidity”, which in reality should be termed “fiscal accountability” compared to his liberal, irresponsible colleagues in the statehouse. At least newly-installed mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti admitted that California, specifically Los Angeles, has a hostile business climate: “It should not be easier to meet with the governor of Texas than the mayor of Los Angeles”, Garcetti announced in his augural speech.

And this notion of “taxing the rich” and “pay your fair share” is rich in its unfairness, to poor as well as rich. Where does anyone get the idea that taxing those who make money will help everyone else make it? Without capital to invest, businesses cannot expand, and people cannot get jobs. Capitalism has always been lost on Progressives; one wonders why they call themselves that name in the first place. Look at Rhode Island if you want to see the effects of “progressive taxation”, where everyone who has a job is employed by the government, where 17% of residents depend on foodstamps, where unions control the statehouse, and where the state cannot keep its own house in order.

By the way, for the real record on Progressives, look not to Governor Jerry Brown or father Pat, but Democratic President Woodrow Wilson, an anti-Catholic, anti-immigrant bigot who purged the White House of African-Americans, who dreamed of a nation run by bureaucratic elites and intellects (since racism qualified as intelligence!), who pushed the United States into war not to make the world “safe for Democracy”, but to advance an anti-liberty, statist agenda.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Response to Reactions About Zimmerman Verdict

On February 26, 2012, George Zimmerman of Sanford, Florida was policing his neighborhood as part of his community's "Neighborhood Watch" program. When he say a hooded African-American youth named Trayvon Martin walking around in the area, Zimmerman called 9-1-1. Despite the directions of the emergency operator, Zimmerman approached. A young man in a hoodie on a dark night would arouse concern for many people, and certainly did for Zimmerman. Whether George Zimmerman was profiling the kid because he was behaving suspiciously or because he was black, whether the child objectively posed a threat to himself or to others, we will never know fully. Whether Zimmerman act out of self-defense or racist rage, we also will never know conclusively, either. Aside from the 9-1-1 calls, the autopsy and medical reports, and then fifty-six witnesses and twelve days of testimony and evidence presented in a Florida court following massive public pressure to prosecute Zimmerman, the ground truth of what occurred on February 26, 2012 will never be known.

The uncertainty of criminal cases should unsettle no one. Criminal justice recognizes that what happened in its entirety can never be fully discovered. Still, a resolution of guilt or innocence must be determined. The facts of the Zimmerman case are that: facts in a case. The opinions of people outside of the event are immaterial. Therefore, aside from those in the case, no one has any right deciding anything definitive about the verdict, let alone voicing violent invective in reaction to it. The greater concern then should focus on the popular (or rather populist) responses to the trial, and what inspires them in the first place.

The media shares some guilt. Their coverage joined with public opinion amplifies the emotions of interest groups. For example, news commentators spoke at length about the Trayvon Martin "tragedy". The word itself exposes the problems when outside interests project their fears, their worries, their prejudices into a legal event. They distort the facts of the case and turn details into a drama, where emotions and memories take precedence over the truth. The death of a youth in Sanford, Florida can only be a "tragedy" for television viewers or media consumers if someone presents it up that way. Gun violence in connection with race, whether in self-defense or in unjustified rage, only concerns communities across the country if dedicated leaders insist on stirring up outrage for the sake of notoriety or power. For this reason among others, matters of guilt and innocence are decided in a courtroom, not in a court of public opinion, where the frustration of years past, where the prejudices of the present, and the fears of the future inflame people rather than invite respect for the facts of a case.

Trayvon Martin had a history of drug abuse. George Zimmerman grew up in a multi-ethnic family, and may have endured racial slights in his past. Who cares? Following twelve days of testimony, fifty-six witnesses, and a lot of news commentary, six jurors found Zimmerman "not guilty."

Case closed.

Yet for aggrieved demonstrators in Los Angeles, the case is not closed. Compelled by the arrogance of racial animus, protestors black and white voiced their disapproval following the verdict, vandalizing property and harassing others to express their outrage. This unjustifiable conviction stems from the lie that every time a black man is on trial, the black man did nothing, or when a black man is killed by a white man, or police officers arrested an African-American male, prejudicial profiling motivated the aggression.

What motivates the violent protests?

Perhaps the aftermath of the OJ Simpson trial, in which a sense of grievance has resurfaced, as if every time a black man is put on trial, the entire black community is on trial. If a white man, or in the case of George Zimmerman a man of mixed Anglo-Hispanic heritage, kills a black man, the outpouring of upset flows anew, yet when black men kill other black men, there is little media coverage or civic outrage. This double-standard on race is disconcerting, informed by a misrepresentation of more than the facts of a case.

Is race still a damaging factor in our society? With the appointments of African-Americans to the United States Presidential Cabinet, the Supreme Court, and elections to higher office, state and federal, including the Presidency, there is ample evidence that in spite of prejudice, men and women of color can advance. Yet the demagoguery on race persists, highlighted by reaction to the Zimmerman verdict. Who is responsible for this? Those who profit from stirring up such strife. From President Obama, who depends on divisions to shore up his diminished credibility, to irreverent leaders who resurrect racial strife-mongering for political relevance, they are responsible for the criminal responses which following the Zimmerman verdict.

Verdicts must be determined in a courtroom, not in the public square. Any issues of race in connection with the Zimmerman trial stem from those outside who want to retry the trial, and they are wrong to do so. Not Zimmerman, but those whose racial distortions stir up strife: they should be held accountable.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Homeless People, not Belongings, Deserve Attention

According to the ruling in Lavan vs. City of Los Angeles, upheld by two federal court injunctions, Los Angeles retains the authority to remove abandoned belongings on public thoroughfares, but cannot remove goods which clearly belong to a homeless person just because they remain unattended for a period of time. Property owners still wonder about the blight of homelessness in their communities, while civic activists either celebrate homeless persons or worry about the plight of poverty which afflicts them. Lawyers merely litigate the property rights of the homeless persons. Instead of arguing about the homeless man's belongings, why don't city leaders, civic activists, and lawyers attend to a more important issue: why are there so many homeless in Los Angeles?

First of all, the individual may be a veteran who has not received proper care from the Veterans Administration. The Brentwood VA has turned into a private club for pet owners, laundromats, and solar panels, yet tens of thousands of wounded warriors still wander the streets. Instead of discussing gun violence and mental health in a Santa Monica City Council open forum on July 15, Congressman Henry Waxman should have discussed the neglected transient homeless veterans.

Second, the growing problem of mental illness has not been addressed effectively. The gradual expansion of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual has catalogued more diseases, yet has provided no solutions. The governmental expansion into health insurance has decreased quality care and access for practitioners and patients. Waxman's signature legislation, Obamacare, has only exacerbated this problem.

Then there are those who are struggling to find a job and get back on their feet in this anemic economy. A government which taxed less, spent less, did less (that we would see less of altogether), would help ensure more business, more commerce, more opportunities, and less homelessness.

AdamsCare, RomneyCare, ObamaCare: State-Run Health Care does not Care

Last week, I had mentioned that President John Adams authorized a state-run hospital for retired American naval officers. The stark coincidence of a Massachusetts’ born President enacting the first medical insurance mandate was too good to pass up, since Massachusetts would later pass the first state-wide insurance mandate. In 2010, President Obama, with strong Democratic majorities in the House and the Senate, passed a nationwide insurance mandate, both for individuals and employers, allowing with fines for those who failed to comply, based on the Massachusetts model.

In light of President Obama’s recent decision to delay the employer mandate in his Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), a more expansive look at the consequences of state-run health care is in order.

Let’s first look at the history behind “An Act for the relief of sick and disabled seamen” or “AdamsCare”:

In 1798, the Congress drew up legislation which would permit the government to draw twenty cents per month from every naval officer’s pay. The monies would provide for their health care in existing hospitals, and surplus funds would build new hospitals. The Marine-Hospital Service created centers for naval personnel to rest, recover, and recuperate throughout the Eastern Seaboard of the United States.

Congress centralized control of the program, then raised taxes on naval officers. Reports of financial mismanagement and poor quality health-care plagued these institutions in the 1860s. The Office of Surgeon General was created to supervise the healthcare and well-being of our veterans. Today, veterans wait months, if not years, to receive their benefits. The poor oversight of Veterans Administrations throughout the country attests to the failure of state intervention in the care of our wounded. Their modern-day successor, Walter Reed Medical Center, closed down following revelations of poor care and broken men and women made worse under government-funded health care. To this day, the Brentwood VA in Los Angeles, California, remains farmed out to private interests, while the land itself, dotted with dilapidated buildings, remains empty and useless while tens of thousands of homeless veterans struggle or die on the streets. To this day, the Congressman who is supposed to oversea the Brentwood VA, Henry Waxman (D-Los Angeles/South Bay) has done nothing aside from writing letters and appropriating funds to “fix the problem”.

Then there’s Romneycare .

In 2006, Governor Willard “Mitt” Romney required that 95% of Massachusetts residents purchase health insurance or pay a fine. This legislation was enacted in response to growing concern for indigent health care recipients entering emergency rooms and not paying. The Federal Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) complicated this situation, by requiring that all emergency rooms provide care, whether the patient could afford it or not.

As any state-sponsored mandate would claim, RomneyCare would expand access and control costs. The law did neither. As sure as any other law of human nature, the moment that anyone provides something for free, people will sign up for it. Government subsidies would allow the uninsured and unable to pay to get something for nothing. The program has faced massive cost overruns since then. A larger number of residents pay nothing , and healthcare costs have increased. Following a year and a half of debate, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick had no choice but to enact price controls. Now health care practitioners will have to register with another public agency and report costs, too. More paperwork, more wasted money, and diminished access altogether has made bad health care worse in Massachusetts.

And now ObamaCare .

President Obama’s signature legislation, officially (though not truthfully) referred to as “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act”, received nation-wide vetting from the President in 2009 and 2010. Voters hated the law then, and they hate it now. Today, Obamacare is facing numerous complications, as would any 2,500 page law, plus the tens of thousands of pages of regulations which have emerged in furtherance to the legislation since then.

Just as Obamacare relied on the Massachusetts model for design and implementation, so too the law has generated the same challenges, mishaps, cost –overruns, and financial malfeasance. The liberal Los Angeles Times has already reported the law’s numerous setbacks. Insurance carriers are leaving entire states, or at least leaving off insurance recipients. The President has rescinded key provisions of the law, including the 1099 mandate for small businesses, the requirement to provide contraception as part of employer health insurance. Now the White House has decided to delay the employer mandate by one year, and only twenty-six states have opted into the Medicare exchanges, which are still not ready, and likely never will be.

Democrats as well as Republicans have decried the law as a big mess. US Senator Max Baucus called the law “a train wreck.” US Senators Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren claimed that they would repeal the law’s medical device tax. If liberals have complaints, there is no telling what other terrible surprises will unfold. Even Democratic activist Donna Brazile acknowledged that her health care premiums are going up.

From AdamsCare to RomneyCare to ObamaCare, there is no worse kind of health care than the state-run kind.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Palin for US Senate? You Betcha!

Based on frequent polling, voters are waiting for the right (as in politically) leaders to pull this country up from the pits. With 2014 looming, and looking bad for Democrats, Republicans are liking their chances, waiting to carve out a strong majority in the US Senate and maintain (if not augment) their numbers in the House of Representatives. Of the twenty-plus seats which Democrats must defend in 2014 in the US Senate, at least six are vulnerable, with Democrats representing Republican states. In states like Louisiana to North Carolina, Democratic US Senators must win reelection in states where strong Republican supermajorities have become supermajorities.

One Republican hot spot, cold and dark Alaska, is looking like a warm place for Republicans to reign and shine again. In 2008, long-term incumbent Ted Stevens, the eldest Republican in the US Senate, was indicted for corruption charges. His ties to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, plus the badly damaged Bush brand, plus the Obama-surge, pushed Stevens out of office in favor of Mark Begich, a centrist Democrat who voted for Obamacare.

With the failures of Obamacare in plain sight in 2013, Republicans are breathing sighs of relief, that they can take back Congress and stall Obamacare as well as the rest of the Obama-Progressive-Juggernaut. Names are floating around for who should challenge Begich and take his place?

Perhaps Joe Miller. With former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin’s backing, Miller primaried moderate Republican Lisa Murkowski in 2010, the “Establishment” candidate with a capital E. Professional mistakes hampered an otherwise winnable race for Tea Party supported Miller. Murkowski, with independence and initiatives, reclaimed her Senate seat in a write-in run-off.

Where Miller failed in 2010, could Palin succeed in 2014?

Her bravado, her exuberance has its place. Palin upended the Alaska GOP Establishment in 2006, removing the incumbent Republican Governor in the primary, then winning the governor’s seat in the general election. The highlight of the 2008 Republican National Convention as the Vice-Presidential candidate with mainstream-maverick-moderate John McCain, Palin defined the difference between a pit-bull and a Hockey mom (Lipstick) as well as the difference between being a mayor and a community organizer (the mayor actually gets work done). A masterful politician with a record, Palin resurrected much-needed passion at the Republican convention:

Yet her record outside of Alaska may give pause to endorsing her for US Senate in 2014. After a year and a half as Governor, she resigned. Where’s the leadership in that? She went on campaign-rally tours touting “The Tea Party express”. “Richard Nixon with a skirt” (and without tax evasion charges), Pat Buchanan once called her, because She played king-maker in key US Senate races, where more of her candidates won than lost, but certain primary upsets later upset Establishment and Mainstream Republicans, too. The laughable Christine O’Donnell edged out well-connected and certain-to-win Mike Castle in Delaware. Sharron Angle of Nevada said too much and campaigned too little against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Following her intervention in key races, Palin’s political savvy seemed severed to some pundits.

Here's the lesson: “Mama Grizzlies” are perfect for dark woods and lonely cubs, but “grizzled politician” must ingratiate themselves to the voters, with competence with confidence, to win elections. How many other US Senate seats did Palin inadvertently lose for an incumbent to a Democrat in 2010? Or even 2012? The political savvy missing from the Tea Party movement defines the lacking elements in Ms. Palin’s political “Bildungsroman.” She can wow the crowds, but her loud campaigning does not win every election.

Still, a Palin Senatorial bid deserves candid respect as well as candor. Would she work well in the Senate? The former Wasilla mayor, the former Governor, the reality TV show star (who just wife-swapped with Joan Rivers, of all people): could she be on lioness in “a herd of cats”, as political operatives (and Senate majority leaders) refer to the upper chamber? She would be a welcome addition to the Rand Paul-Ted Cruz-Mike Lee Phalanx, which routinely resists taxes, spending, and refuses to compromise on key values. Could she and her fellow senator Murkowski work together? Kentucky’s Rand and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have looked passed their differences (McConnell had endorsed Rand’s primary opponent in 2010). Rand has also run endorsements for Mitch, who faces reelection in 2014, along with Mark Begich. Senator Palin’s steel resolve to get things done, rather than “work together”, would promote the welcome change of atmosphere to the US Senate.

Palin may have been a good Vice-President. She is no King (or Queen) Maker in elections, but would she be an excellent US Senate candidate. She knows Alaska better than the best. A fish who swims against the current, who knows the bears, both the “where” and the “wherefore”, Palin can paddle against the worst and still come up head first. Despite her weak connections to the Lower Forty-Eight, she can corral the numbers in Alaska without asking. Should Palin run for US Senate, Begich will beg for mercy.

Should Palin run for US Senate? Does a Momma Grizzly do “you know what” in the woods?

You Betcha!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Illinois, Concealed-Carry, and the Gun Control Debate

Illinois is the latest (and last) state to enact concealed-carry gun laws, in compliance with a stern Federal appellate court order, which mandated that the constricting gun laws be relaxed in the Log Cabin State.

When I read that Illinois was “last state to enact concealed-carry” laws, I thought that other states would lose the opportunity to enforce the key provisions of the Second Amendment. Then I recognized that the other forty-nine states (including Hawaii – Aloha!) have already empowered citizens to train, test, and tote concealed weapons.

Not surprisingly, Illinois is a supermajority blue state: Democrats control the statehouse and the Governor’s Mansion. The mayor of Chicago (the third largest metropolis in the United States), Rahm Emmanuel, is a virulent liberal, an officious politician who gladly confronts any opposition with force. Yet in even in deep blue, and deeply in debt Illinois, the state legislature will permit residents to carry a concealed weapon.

Governor Pat Quinn (who assumed leadership following the resignation of disgraced Rod “I’m not giving it for f----in’ nothing” Blagojevich) attempted to amendment-veto the legislation, first by deeming that no firearms would be permitted in establishments which serve alcohol, and that carried weapons could not hold more than ten rounds. Democrats and Republicans in the statehouse overrode this veto, and in six months time, police stations throughout Illinois must grant concealed-carry licenses to properly trained applicants.

Not just in Illinois, where the last state to empower residents has caved to the will of the people, and the wisdom of the United States Constitution, but also in Colorado voters are asserting their Second Amendment rights to keep and bear arms, where state senators face recall efforts following their support for gun-control legislation. The rage over gun control has exploded once again, and despite the millions of dollars spent by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to shame federal legislators and statehouses to enact gun control laws, the exact opposite has occurred.

The gun control debate locks a number of fundamental issues into one argument. The matter of human nature, both its origins and manifestations, cannot escape the debate. Are people basically good, just given to crime and consequences in the wrong environment with improvident opportunities and unfortunate upbringing? Or is there a limited, flawed aspect to mankind, in which even in his best intentions, man can succumb to immoral intuitions, whether within himself or his surroundings?

This “nature-nurture” debate cannot be resolved through compromise. Informing the identity and world-view of our citizenry, the propensity for evil in our culture cannot be compromised with diverse legislation. Progressives, liberals, and thus many Democrats, believe that environment and material opportunity even manifest the good or mar the bad in man. Otherwise, in Rousseauian conceit, man is basically good. Yet the attachment to narcissistic, complacent mantra “People are basically good” still perverts the discussion on gun control among left-leaning thinkers in liberal constituencies. Conservatives, and even Democrats in rural, more conservative communities, will not resist the will of their voters or the reality of this fallen world, and thus view with dignified suspicion and government which seeks to curtail their right to keep and bear arms.

The Framers of the Constitution never entertained such ideal constructs of mankind. In Federalist #10, James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, asserted that “if men were angels”, there would be no need for laws, for constriction and diffusion of human ambition. The thousands of years of recorded history, in addition to the recent massacres at Newton, Connecticut, as well as Aurora, Colorado, and Santa Monica, California (in addition to Chicago, Illinois, where strict gun laws did not prevent five hundred homicides in 2012) will attest that no matter the heartfelt and emotionally-driven protestations of intellects and politicians, man retains the propensity to do great harm to man. Resigning themselves to the empirical results of reviewing history and remembering the harms which they and their colonial peers had endured, the Framers of the Constitution not only embedded significant measures to frustrate government power, but also added a Bill of Rights, the first two dealing with the authority of the individual to challenge and constrain his government in word and conscience (First Amendment) and if necessary, by force (Second Amendment).

The founding principle of the Second Amendment, regarding state militias and the individual right to bear arms, concerns more than the rights of American citizens to hunt animals, but to protect themselves from immoral government and intolerant leaders. “Good laws and good arms” found all stable societies, as recorded by Machiavelli in his signature political treatise, “The Prince”. No one should ignore, nor disdain this sage advice even today, where human nature remains immutable and yet prone to wrongdoing. Following the rescission of its handgun ban by judicial order, Washington D.C. enjoyed a sharp decline in gun violence. Great Britain, with strict gun laws, endures massive crime waves to this day.

The passage of “concealed-carry” in Illinois should grant relief to those who respect the Constitution (including the Second Amendment. While the gun control debate still rages, the reasonable argument which recognizes the flaws of human nature is winning.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Speaker Gordon Fox: "Will You Marry Me?"

With the passage of gay marriage in Rhode Island (plus ten other states), and the recent ruling from the United States Supreme Court, which struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) signed by President Bill “I did not do that to that woman” Clinton (so much for the sanctity of marriage), gay marriage advocates are in full march once again.

Along with striking down the DOMA provision which barred benefits to same-sex couples and their beneficiaries, the Supreme Court also struck down California’s “Prop 8” voter initiative, which received 51% of voters’ support in 2008 and amended the state constitution. However, five Supreme Court Justices ruled that on procedural grounds the constitutional amendment was unconstitutional (so much for the rule of law, and the will of the people).

So, the gay marriage movement is on the move, with the six-colored rainbow flag rolling across the land.

Then again, the very banner bandied about by gay marriage advocates betrays the hollowness of the movement. A real rainbow has seven bands: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, as well as violet (ROY G. BIV for you grade-schoolers). As a matter of fact (as well as faith and fullness) their rainbow will never be complete; their sentiment of unaccomplishment will remain in full spread. How could it be otherwise? The notion that two people of the same sex (not gender, but individuals with the same primary and secondary sexual characteristics) can marry has no basis in biology, psychology, or even history.

Yet progressives, liberals, the Democratic hypermajority, and even some Republicans in the Rhode Island statehouse have decided that gay marriage should have a “gay” ol’ time in Rhode Island. It’s a matter of “fairness” (or equality? Or access? Which liberal buzz-word is it?),

No shy advocate for redefining marriage, openly gay House Speaker Gordon Fox claimed that marriage is all about family, commitment, and love in a recent interview with the Providence Journal.

Although he shared that the whole “gay marriage” vote was unprecedented for him, he did admit:

“My becoming speaker of the House would move this issue forward.”

And yet he was surprised at its passage? This man is a true politician, speaking out of both sides of his mouth.

About getting support for gay marriage. Speaker Fox explained:

“We had to put a face on the issue.”

Speaker Fox does not face many issues. He forgot about Rhode Island’s debt, deficits, and dysfunction, but he was willing to “face” the issue of gay marriage. . .

About the connection between gay marriage and Governor Lincoln Chafee, Fox added, when assessing the chance of passing the law during this term:

“I’m not alone anymore on this issue. I’ve got a friend and a partner.”

Well, Speaker Fox, since you will not face facts about the state of your state, but instead focused on gay marriage, claiming that it’s all about “love, commitment, and family”, I have some proposals for you.

Why don’t you marry Governor Chafee? Granted, he won’t be a faithful spouse, since he was not faithful to his first party, or to his previously ascertained “independent” status, but you said he was a “partner” on the issue. You and he have so much in common, making your personal (and familial?) priorities greater than the needs of Rhode Islanders. You both have a healthy sense of protecting your future (even if it harms other people’s.

I also have a proposal to make, one based on your radical definition of marriage based on, family, commitment, and love.

Speaker Gordon Fox (D-Rhode Island)
I want to get married, and I want to marry another man’s spouse. This man already has a partner, but since I can marry anyone I want, I want to marry this man. Since marriage is no longer defined as “one man and one woman” in Rhode Island, there’s nothing wrong with polygamy, right? You and Chafee would make a solid match, granted. In a similar vein, I am committed to this person (whether he loves me or, I don’t know yet). I love him so much, he is like family. So, I guess my attraction counts as legal and moral grounds for marriage, according to you.

Mr. Speaker, let me be open and honest about my feelings. I know that you (and Rhode Island) are married to structural debt, overwhelming pension obligations, fleeing businesses, high taxes, and a culture of welfare-malaise, but since marriage is the one issue that you are willing to face, and it’s all about love, commitment and family:

Speaker Gordon Fox: will you marry me?

You seem like a committed family man to me. You care so much about yourself and your partner(s), that you prioritized gay marriage ahead of your state, your constituents, and their future. You are so dedicated to the cause, and it sounds to me as if you want to make sure that gay marriage goes all over the nation. In California, they just struck down the Prop 8 initiative to ban gay marriage. Come to San Francisco, and make my dreams come true.

What do you say, Speaker? Will you marry me?

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa: Good Enough

Following Council President Eric Garcetti’s installation as mayor of f Los Angeles, the outgoing (leaving office, and always with flair) former mayor Antonio Villaraigosa made last-minutes stops and visited with as many Angelenos as he could on his last day in office.

Mayor Villaraigosa accomplished some good and bad. Los Angeles still needs a mayor like Richard Riordan, who will bring back business and give residents more power in their city. Then again, former mayor James Hahn acknowledged that being mayor is not all that much fun, since he gets all the complaints, and no one tells him (still no “her”, yet. Sorry, Wendy!) that he has done a good job. Hahn preferred serving as City Attorney, and may have breathed a sigh of relief when he left office after one term. Villaraigosa now shares than sentiment, certainly.

Unlike former mayor Sam Yorty, Villaraigosa never got drunk on TV (then again, Villaraigosa’s final days partying with Charlie “Winning!” Sheen were not high moments). Unlike Tom Bradley, he never faced city-wide domestic disturbances like the LA Riots, and the stain of Rampart has been wiped away. Villaraigosa attempted to reform public education. He pushed a massive initiative through the State Legislature so he could have direct control over all LA Schools. While the measure was ultimately ruled unconstitutional in a lower court, the mayor received control over some of the most challenged schools. His leadership was a necessary stop-gap measure as Los Angeles Unified School District struggled with one superintendent after another leaving the top post. Crime is down in Los Angeles, yet police and fire have good numbers. Transportation has improved, yet still there is no “Subway to the Sea” (Congressman Henry Waxman, what do you say to that?)

Not bad, but not great, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was good enough.

Walker on the Senate Immigraton Bill: "Band-aid" not "

Conflicting news reporters castigate Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker on his stance regarding the United States Senate’s recent passage of a loaded immigration bill instead of casting a proper light on his views. The legislation provides a convoluted path to citizenship, rewards lawbreakers with immediate provisional (yet ultimately) permanent citizenship, triggered by border control half-measures which will likely not materialize.

Like many free market economists and classical liberal pundits, Walker clearly and candidly declared that he wants immigrants from every part of the world to come to the United States. Walker offered that immigration should not be a complex process which discourages the best and the brightest from settling within our nation’s borders:

“Because if [immigration] wasn’t so cumbersome, if there wasn’t such a long wait, if it wasn’t so difficult to get in, we wouldn’t have the other problems that we have.”

His reference to the Senate Bill as a “band-aid” does not imply that the legislation is acceptable, but rather that its reforms are not comprehensive, that they do not “heal” the “deeper wounds” which are “bleeding” our immigration policy. The Washington Times incorrectly submitted that Walker endorsed the US Senate’s immigration proposal, which has no chance of passage in the House. House Speaker John Boehner will not recognize legislation which the majority of House majority has rightly rejected.

Governor Walker should not endorse any federal reforms which reward lawbreakers, which do not pare back the massive welfare state, and which do not recognize the efforts of legal immigrants.

Job Wanted to be the Blessor -- Only God in Christ Can Bless -- Job 1: 11; 2: 5

"But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse [lit. Bless] thee to thy face." (Job 1: 11; 2: 5)

As established in Hebrews 7: 7, the lesser is always blessed by the greator.

To the degree that anyone thinks that he or she can, or that they have to, bless God, to that extent, therefore, do they attempt to magnify themselves at the expense of God, who alone is Creator, Source, and Spirit of all Blessings in our lives.

The battle that Satan sought to create between God and Job was not about getting Job to renounce his faith in God, but rather to see if indeed mankind would ever stop depending on his own mortal, flawed efforts to secure righteousness and blessings, and let God provide all things.

Satan was banking on the same nature which had developed in fallen Adam, that Job would hold onto his integrity, his own righteousness, yet still believing that God is a good God, but somehow, someway Job's efforts were needed and noteworthy, on an even parity with God.

For a long time, it seemed as if Satan would be proven victorious:

"Return, I pray you, let it not be iniquity; yea, return again, my righteousness is in it." (Job 6: 29)

and then

"God forbid that I should justify you: till I die I will not remove mine integrity from me." (Job 27: 5)

and also

"Let me be weighed in an even balance, that God may know mine integrity." (Job 31: 6)

One of the biggest problems which I have noticed in the Body of Christ, which I have seen dominate and decimate families, is the compulsive notion among parents and members of the Body which assume that we must run in and rescue other believers, that God cannot be trusted to move in the lives of our loved ones, and that when the situation is dire and damaging, we must "do something", and we "do something" out of fear ( in fact, a damnable sense of arrogance) that God is "sleeping on the job [not "Job"] and cannot be trusted.

This idea of human effort completing, or initiating, or enabling, or assisting God is contrary to scripture. In the Beginning, God (not man!) created the Heaven and the Earth. He created man on the six day, that man could enjoy all the things which God freely provided. Satan tempted Adam and Eve to eat of the Forbidden Tree, as if God was not generous enough! How outrageous and wicked is that!?

God did not wait for the Israelites to call on Him when they were oppressed by their Egyptian taskmasters. They groaned, and God on His throne remembered His Covenant and prepared the way for Moses their deliverer to come (Exodus 2: 23-25)

Yet this limitation of self-starting and self-blessing is endemic to humanity (it's called "sin"), and from the moment we are born, and before we are born again, this chronic confusion and neediness dominates us, yet at the same this in-bred ignorant arrogances prods us to look to something in ourselves, our senses, or our world to find fulfillment.

In effect, we want to be the source of blessings in our own lives, and by extension the source of blessings for our children, instead of teaching them that God Himself through His Son provides all things (Romans 8: 31-32).

Job Wanted to Be the Blessor -- Only God in Christ Can Bless Us -- Job 1: 5

Pastor Perry Stone of MannaFest first directed me to this intriguing revelation, one which current as well as traditional translations traduce.

In the book of Job, four mentions of the word "curse" appear, and just in the first two chapters:

"And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually." (Job 1: 5)

Satan tempts God to question Job's integrity:

"But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face." (Job 1: 11)

After God permits Satan to attack Job's substance, Satan attempts to tempt God once again:

"But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face." (Job 2: 5)
Then Job's wife suggests that Job end it all, after suffering so much:

"9Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die." (Job 2: 9)

The interesting element in each of these verses, however, rests on that word "curse", which in the Hebrew word is actually "barak", or "bless".

A proper translation, then would read:

"And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed [lit. blessed] God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually." (Job 1: 5)

Why was Job afriad that one ofhis sons may have sinned and blessed God in their hearts? The issue in this pasasge does not reveal the issue of sin, but rather the status of the son, that his blessings of God would be corrupted in some manner. I also submitted that this compulsiveness to preempt and sacrifice for his sons shows a spiritual gluttony of sorts, as if Job wanted to be the source of blessings in his children's lives, or that his sacrificial efforts made all the difference in their lives as well as his, that his sacrifices were the source of all good things in his life, as opposed to God's Blessed Nature.

Furthermore, Job was keenly, compulsively aware of his sons' sinning, but not his own? Job had a high opinion of himself, to say the least.

This opinion runs contrary to the  revelation of man's depraved nature:

"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" (Jeremiah 17: 9)

Who can know the human heart, indeed? Job thought that he knew his sons's heart, yet he never could, and he never once considered that as a man, a son of Adam, his heart was dead, in need of new life.

For this reason, God promised a new covenant (Jeremiah 31: 33-34), which was cut by His Son, our perfect High Priest and new, eternal mediator. Jesus establishes fully the truth which Job did not understand;' God alone is our Blessing and Blessor, and no one can take His place.