The Mass Media lies

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In the latest example of today’s topic – In the 7 July 2015 cnn.com/Money article, Gun sales spike in June, by Aaron Smith, it is stated, “Last month the FBI conducted nearly 1.53 million background checks, which are required for all in-store purchases, but not for sales at gun shows or between individuals”.
This is of course a lie. Not so much the number of background checks (of that we can only take his word (actually not something I am prepared to do)) but, for any that take to the time to know the law, the assertion the they are not required at gun shows. 90+% of the sales at guns shows are by Federal Firearms License (FFL) holders. All FFL holders are required to run background checks for all sales (exception noted below) regardless of the location. Aaron Smith knows this. Aaron Smith is a liar. Should I give him the benefit of the doubt? Should I presume he is just ignorant of the topic and is doing the best he can? He IS writing for the “Money” section after all. The answer is a resounding NO! He is not writing for some minor rag in some Podunk town in the middle of nowhere. He is writing for CNN. If he is THAT good, he should be THAT good! But of course he IS that good. He phrases it the way he does on purpose. To further the agenda of the Liberals/Progressives/Socialists. And most people will just take his word for it. Mission accomplished.
So I ask, what is the point of mass media if they continually and blatantly lie to us. How many of you take them at face value? Why?

As an aside, part of the point of his article is to suggest that since the number of background checks is increasing, the number of gun sales is therefore increasing. Three points are to be made (mifireaFFLLibersnor of course, but you’ll only hear it here).
– FFL holders are not required to run background checks on concealed carry permit (CCW) holders. The rational being that CCW holders have already had a background check (one far more in-depth that one used to purchase a firearm). In my state, a CCW is valid for five (5) years. In that time I may purchase one gun or one gun a year or one a month or one a week or one a day. For none of which will a background check be run. The safeguard of course being that: a) if I do something that would make it illegal for me to purchase a gun or hold the permit, it will be revoked and b) I must still complete all the “no, I’ve not done anything bad in my past” paperwork under threat of fine and jail time if it turns out I’m lying. But since I don’t work for the press, nor am I a criminal, I’m probably ok.
– Not all background checks lead to gun sales. Kinda the point if you think about it. Of course thinking is not something the press is known for.
– He is correct (imagine that!) in that sales between individuals do not require background checks. Since criminals, by definition, don’t care about the law, the presumption behind this is that the seller knows the buyer well enough to know they can legally own a gun. As well, just to ensure this, it is illegal to KNOWINGLY sell a gun to someone not legally allowed to own/possess one. Therefore, if you are a criminal you won’t care anyway and if you are an upstanding citizen you won’t sell the gun if you know that person can’t legally own one.

Finally, he can only PRESUME that since background checks are increasing, gun sales are increasing. Not my major issue with his article but none-the-less. Leaving the whole issue of illegal sales out of the argument (let’s presume he was only referring to legitimate, legal sales), maybe more people are currently buying from gun stores than their friends and relatives. Maybe CCW permit holders have all the guns they want at this time and were not buying last month.

Another minor example: the “press” reports that “The official confirmation had to wait until new population figures were released by the Census Bureau this summer. The new tally, released in late June, shows that as of July 1, 2014, about 14.99 million Latinos live in California, edging out the 14.92 million whites in the state.” On the surface this may seem somewhat innocuous. This is not only a lie but it is also purposefully divisive. The problem? Latinos ARE white. Latino is an ethnicity, not a race. White is a race. The US Census Bureau knows this. SO…. Yet another misrepresentation by the press. In this case, another division to set one group of people against another. Illegal immigration aside (which, by the way, isCe not all Latinos!), WHO CARES? Why do we need to concern ourselves with such divisions of people in this country (or any for that matter). If you wish to differentiate legal from illegal (read, criminal) people in this country, more power to you. Goes to sovereignty. However, in any other argument, WHY? Why must we divide by race? Why must we divide by ethnicity? Why can’t we all just be American?

Regardless, between presumptions, ignorance and outright lies, the mainstream media provides more of an amusement than a source of valid information. Take it for what it is worth.

>>> The day is at a close, the night is drawing in and my cigar awaits – ’til next time…

Yesterday (19 July 2015) was updated

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For those of you that subscribe, I understand “modifications” to posts are not sent out. This is unfortunate since I, from time-to-time, do make corrections, additions or general modifications to posts rather than create a whole new post that then must be linked back to the one it references.
For this I apologize. I strive to ensure my posts are correct and complete but, much to my chagrin (not a normal state of affairs), I am not perfect. Just traditional.
That said, I was on vacation this past week and my post of yesterday was not as well thought out or complete as I had hoped. Even in my desire to keep them informative but short, I failed.
Therefore, I have updated my post of 19 July 2015 if you wish to read the “complete” thought (or at least as complete as it can be for an internet blog post).
Thank you as always for your support and readership.

Supreme Court Rulings – Always Right?

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Is the SCOTUS always right?
Several recent cases (not to mention legalization of abortion several decades ago) have led to many suggesting a given argument is “settled law”. Stop arguing. It is over. Accept it.
But is this really the case?
A quick review of the last few hundred years show that the Supreme Court has overturned previous SCOTUS rulings 123 times as of EOY 2014.
Seems to me nothing is settled. Ever.

As an aside – over the approximately 2000 years of the Catholic Church, while the Popes throughout its history have made only a few of what are called “Ex Cathedra” proclamations, which literally means, “from the chair” (with the full authority of office (especially of the pope’s infallibility as defined in Roman Catholic doctrine)), none have been reversed. These are basically the Pope declaring something to be true and what must be believed. It is quite telling that at no time has a Pope reversed the proclamation of a predecessor. EVER. And while there have only been a few Ex Cathedra declarations, there have been many determinations from popes throughout the history of the Church that have also NEVER been reversed.
It is interesting that the Catholic Church has never reversed what essentially the equivalent or greater (so to speak) of a Supreme Court ruling in 2000 years but the SCOTUS has reversed itself 123 times in approximately 1/10th the length of time.

Post note: I know what some of you will say… The SCOTUS has made hundreds or even thousands of decisions over the last few hundred years and the pope has only made a few. Of course they are going to get things wrong. True. However, not to get into detail of how the Catholic Church works, there are other ways of “declaring” something true and doctrinal. One is through “collegiality” where the pope makes a determination in communion with the other bishops of the church. This is not Ex Cathedra per se but holds the same authority. As well, several Church councils have been called over the centuries (Trent, Vatican I & II are probably the best known). While these councils make non-doctrinal decisions, they also have made doctrinal ones. Again, none of the doctrinal determinations of the Church have been reversed.
This post was not supposed to be a comparison of the Catholic Church and the SCOTUS.
The post overall and the comparison was intended to point out two things.
A) Supreme Court decisions are NOT settled law.
B) When determinations are made on the basis of the truth of right and wrong (vice “I want to do it so it must be right”), good and bad, morals, they have much less chance of being overturned. When decisions are made on the basis of polls, current societal “norms”, “equality”, etc., they will eventually, hopefully, be corrected. The SCOTUS is more and more making decisions based on current societal norms vice what is right (or even Constitutional). I harken again back to Sodom and Gomorrah.

So take heart. Poor decisions can, and hopefully will, be reversed. Oh, wait a minute… have we the time?

One final thought – let’s take a quick look at the Constitution of the United States. You remember that document. The one the POTUS and SCOTUS like to ignore.
It specifies in Article III, Section 2, Paragraph 2:
“In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before mentioned, the Supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.”
So the question may be – Why does Congress, the body of the people, not stand up for what is right for the people? Congress is Constitutionally authorized to make exceptions as to on what the Supreme Court may or may not rule. For what are they waiting? The people, through their Representatives, have the authority to say “this is the way we wish our country to be run… this is what is right and what is wrong… the minority can’t dictate to the majority… having an opinion (preference?) does not make you right…”. However, our Congress is either ignoring or ignorant of it’s authority to stand up for the people. So much for a “representative democracy”.

>>> The day is at a close, the night is drawing in and my cigar awaits – ’til next time…

The Tipping Point – a continuation…

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Progressivism (read, Liberalism/Socialism) in a nutshell (although not inclusive)::

Poverty vs welfare: They go hand in hand. What Socialists don’t see is that while welfare doesn’t create poverty, in its current state in our country, it does in fact perpetuate it. This has led to generational dependency and poverty. The way to lift our fellow man out of this perpetual state is to allow the private sector to provide jobs and limit the assistance (at either the State level or via private charity) to a minimal timeframe thereby creating the requirement to accept the work that private sector provides. Considering it is ALWAYS better than the poverty level subsistence provided by the Federal government, why would you NOT take it. Oh yeah, you’d actually have to GET A JOB!
I am not alone in this, the Manhattan Institute, came to this conclusion when it studied the notion of income inequality: “The central problem facing the economy is that income growth over the past few years has been modest to nonexistent, as a result of the financial crisis, the subsequent recession, and an extremely modest recovery. Moreover, policies that aim only to redistribute wealth—rather than generate real economic growth and opportunity—are unlikely to solve, or even meaningfully address, the slow growth trajectory for wages.”

Tax rate vs government income: Proven over and over again, lowering the tax rates creates more income for the government. Makes no sense on the surface (which is as far as the Socialists look because any further would not satisfy their plan of dependency and thereby ensuring its continued power base). However, the reason it works is simple. Less money taken from the private sector by the government allows more money to be spent by individuals and companies. Money spent creates jobs. More jobs equals more income. More income creates more income tax (yes, EVEN at lower tax rates). It is NOT rocket science.
This is not only a solution for our debt, it is a solution for unemployment. It is a solution for pulling anyone and everyone that takes advantage up in social status. As the old saying goes, a rising tide lifts ALL boats. As well, any job created by the government is a cost to all taxpayers, whether you want or need the product/service. Any job created by the private sector is a cost only to those that choose to spend money on that product or service. That said, since profit is the life or death of a company, job creation is required. Without employment, there is no profit. Therefore, the private sector is much better at creating and pricing jobs. Need proof, look at history.

Debt: See comments reference Greece in previous blog (07/05/2015 – The Tipping Point).

Morality: It is a good thing we have a Supreme Court (more on this next week) to dictate morality and create laws to ensure it. I suspect if we keep going down this path (which I see no indication we won’t) we will be able to get rid of Congress (and therefore the will of the people) and just have a dictator as president (later to be renamed monarch since it is more politically correct) and a court to rubber stamp his/her prescriptions. As well, by dictating away Judeo-Christian morals, on which this country was founded and most of our overriding laws (including the Constitution itself) are based, they can ensure their voting base and therefore their power. Keep in mind however that at some point voters will no longer be needed. Subjects on the other hand will be important.

Our national borders: While I fully understand from an individual perspective the desire to improve their standard of living, entering a sovereign nation without permission is not right. From the other side of the border, helping other countries improve the standards of their people is much preferable than taking on their poverty stricken citizens. And undoubtedly less costly in the long run. Not that I am advocating the US as the banker to the world anymore than the police force of the world (although we already supply significant portions of direct and indirect “lending” to nations throughout the world). Nor do I suggest that it is easy to go into a country and presuppose we know better than them how to provide for their people. However, it is without a doubt that we have proven our past philosophies are quite able to ensure a prosperous society. That said, allowing illegal immigration is not the solution to any country’s problems. When we allow the destitute with no means of support (thereby becoming an additional drain on a society already sucked dry), criminals and terrorists to cross into our country unabated, it can only lead to a further decline and eventual destruction of our ability to help ourselves, much less that rest of the world. And it is in direct conflict with the prime raison d’être of government, its reason for existence – to protect (not PROVIDE FOR) its people. Our current policies and level of enforcement is detrimental to our national existence.

Being forced to buy what we may not want (or already have in the form we want): Yes, SCOTUS Care (not interested in using our current POTUS’s name at any time – but aka The Affordable [what a joke] Care Act – as the current major example. The Oligarchy has spoken. The Federal government, or in this case, the Dictator in Chief and his cohorts in Congress, has/have no Constitutional authority to FORCE us to purchase not only something we don’t want, but exactly what and how much it will be. Apparently individual liberty (as in Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness) and the 1st Amendment no longer apply. A solution looking for a problem. Instead of allowing the private sector to solve the problem of the few, the Dictator in Chief has solved the “problem” even for those of us that didn’t have one. As well, we now have pretty much as many or more without coverage than the problem was to address and has shown no lowering in costs for those that are forced to get a new version of something they already had. The numbers for 2012 (prior to “Affordable” Care Act (ACA)) show an uninsured rate of 16.7% with an average family annual premium of $15,745. In 2013 the uninsured rate was 20.8%. Today the uninsured rate is approximately 15.5% with an average family annual premium of $16,800. These numbers are of course from the government that brought you the product you did not need. Honesty? – I don’t think so. In addition, other than forcing people to purchase something they may or may not want, from somewhere they may or may not want purchase it, what has it accomplished? Since, contrary to what was portrayed, there is no indication that the ACA was the cause of the minimal reduction (a theoretical 1.2%) in number of insured. All that said, and contrary to the ruling of the SCOTUS (now a political body vice the intended legal one), there is nothing Constitutionally allowing the Federal government to get involved in health care.

Another long one. The wife hates that. But it needs to be said. And luckily I’m not the only one saying it. If you believe this country needs to get back to prosperity and the moral values upon which it was based, it is time to standup and in whatever way available to you (within the context of those values) do SOMETHING to turn it around.

Again, welcome to the New Dark Ages…

Maybe I’ll try some less depressing topics in the near future.

>>> The day is at a close, the night is drawing in and my cigar awaits – ’til next time…

The Tipping Point

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I’m back.
A lot has happened during my hiatus.
In that time I believe we – our country specifically, but the world in general – reached the Tipping Point. We are now on an inevitable march into the New Dark Ages.
Don’t get me wrong. It is not the ABILITY to get back on track that is lacking. It’s not that nothing CAN be done. It is that, as in the past, the DESIRE of those that have the power and authority is to continue down this path toward darkness. Why you may ask? Easy, it is also the desire of those that put them in power and the fear of losing that power. The “receivers” outnumber the “providers” and refuse to give up their spoils. Those in power must continue to provide those spoils or lose everything. In relation to physical spoils, they will of course be forced to do so. The problem for them, and us, is too many are now dependent on too few and it can not be sustained. The providers, not having an endless supply or being given the time and freedom to obtain more, will soon be sucked dry.
That said, these “spoils” come not only in physical (read: financial) support but psychological and moral as well. As with the Dark Ages of old, people want to do what they want to do regardless of any ethical or moral consequences. Regardless of any detriment to society. Regardless of any ill affect on their (our) progeny. They have convinced themselves, and others of equally weak minds, that there are in fact no such consequences. Everybody, as well as any thought, idea, lifestyle – any choice whatsoever – is as valid as the next. The valid, individual worth of the person has transformed into invalid worth of ideas. “I’m as good as you, therefore my ideas are as valid as yours.” Consequences and history be damned. Yes, you ARE as good as me as relates to our worth as human beings. No, your ideas have been shown throughout the ups and downs of history to be based on erroneous information and unsound reasoning and are unquestionably invalid (which is one reason they are not questioned). The acceptance of these ideas is what has led to the collapse of civilizations time and time again.

As one of many examples, let us consider modern day Greece. More and more borrowing over the last 7 years or so. Understating its deficit and debt. Now shut out from borrowing in the world financial markets.
Socialism at its best. The path of the United States. Since much of the issue with Greece is due to the interconnectedness of the world financial markets and the implosion of Wall Street in 2008, many other countries – including the US with $18+ Trillion in debt & no end in sight – will follow shortly. Much of the money lent to Greece by the way was from the US contributions to the international funds. SO… the US going further into debt to bail out a country going further into debt. Some actually considered this a good deal? And finally, in order to obtain the latest in its borrowing, Greece was required to make deep budget cuts (we’ll see how that plays out) and steep tax increases. While it obviously didn’t help – taking money from those that generate the money never does – does this sound familiar?
[note: the day of this original post the Greeks voted in a referendum to reject their creditors’ austerity terms for aid. They rejected the budget cuts. They will have their spoils!]

Not to get to hung up on the financial issues of our march…

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”
Anonymous [yes I know, that quote has been attributed to many people. But since there is no hard evidence of the true author, I give credit to Anonymous (he has many great quotes)]

And have no doubt. It IS evil that is on the move. Evil in the form of Socialism (Progressive, Democrat, call it what you want). Making slaves – or at best, indentured servants – of so many. More and more, good men are no longer allowed to do anything. Those that have been lured into and convinced of the benefits of this evil are growing in number by the day. They don’t connect their “gifts” of public assistance to their becoming dependent on it (psychologically if nothing else). They don’t connect their “gifts” of public assistance to the taxes of their neighbor. They don’t connect their “gifts” of public assistance to the absurdly high and still growing National debt. Or they just don’t care. But they DO vote.

Previously a great nation assisting around the world to defend, provide humanitarian relief and fund the necessities of the persecuted of other countries (often times, entire countries), we, the US, no longer have the leadership to do so. In addition, our ability to do so has never been so minimal or so strained.
While our fellow man is being brutally tortured and murdered throughout the Middle East and around the world, our leaders (our dictator) has decided to do nothing.

What is leading us to this state of affairs. Why liberalism of course. Progressivism. Socialism. The Scourge. However you wish to refer to it. It is the epitome of evil. It is Lucifer at work. Subtle. Taking what he can, when he can, where he can, how he can. Bringing us the apple in the garden, Sodom and Gomorrah, the Dark Ages, the Holocaust, (yes, I could go on) and most recently – the new, politically correct, way of Socialism.
We will look at some specific aspects of this next time.

In the mean time, to sum up the current state of our government::

Our POTUS is behaving like a Dictator espousing and forcing socialism on his subjects. The dictator commands his branch from an ivory tower and the cabinet members and their many departments decree more and more how we are allowed to live.

Our SCOTUS is run as an Oligarchy ignoring the Constitutional limits of its own power and either rubber-stamping progressive views or legislating liberal ideals from the bench. This oligarchy, with no regard for the will of the people or the law of the land, ignores the duly elected representatives (not to mention the Constitution) and legislates from the bench.

Our Congress is overrun by liberals on both sides of the aisle. We now have but one party split in name only. As well, based on the 17th Amendment, we have but one chamber separated in name only (ok, rules too) and we are suffering the consequences of ignoring the wisdom of our Founding Fathers and changing the original system. When it is not furthering the cause of Socialism, this Congress sits back and, well, sits back.

Because each of the branches has decided to act individually – without any regard for the Constitution, historic precedence, or common sense – the ideal, an institution of checks and balances as intended and prescribed by the Constitution, is no longer existent.

Unfortunately for President Lincoln & the rest of us, the “Government of the people, by the people, for the people…” has perished from the Earth.

As well, our perfect Union, Justice, domestic Tranquility, common defence, general Welfare, and the Blessings of Liberty have all been relegated to the ash bins of history.

We had a good run.
Prepare for the New Dark Ages…

-to be continued-

>>> The day is at a close, the night is drawing in and my cigar awaits – ’til next time…