Archive for September, 2006

Snow in the mountains

September 29, 2006

I looked up toward the west this morning. This is the third year in a row that I will not venture up into God’s country to seek the solace of nature. But, the surgery appears successful. Perhaps next spring I will again be able to pull my bow; feed myself; my girlfriend; my friends that cannot get game themselves for so many reasons.

Jeffery Cambell is a youngster. He was not afraid of my fifty four caliber Thompson black powder rifle when I offered to allow him to shoot it out at the Golden Gun Club so many years ago. He has made the rifle his own, and I granted it to him this year. He will hunt the great Wapiti of the rockies with it. Perhaps now he will be the hunter for we the elders.

Soon, the season will end. Jeff will leave us to serve our nation. He passed the entrance exams for Airborne. God bless him.

Freedom, and The Founders … Not a pretty sight

September 29, 2006

Nations are worrisome things to establish. Concepts are even a greater huddle to overcome. I am an ancestor of a Founder. Granted, by marriage only but I carry the son of a … genes. Alexander Hamilton was a Federalist, and his poison is effecting America to this day. I submit my friends, and enemies that Freedom and Liberty are always preferred solutions in allways.

As many are aware, I am a Marine Corp Brat. My thinking is indeed colored. It has kept me and others alive. From Vietnam to Israel and places in between I have been challenged. I have never left a battle un-fulfilled. Once upon a time I did things that others call admirable, indeed gallant. I simply call those actions being a man. After all is said and done, I am just the son of a dead Marine.

So, just what is freedom? I present a single solution to this conundrum. Think about the idea my friends. Not just the words presented.

The Antifederalists Were Right

By Gary Galles

Posted on 9/27/2006
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September 27 marks the anniversary of the publication of the first of the Antifederalist Papers in 1789. The Antifederalists were opponents of ratifying the US Constitution. They feared that it would create an overbearing central government, while the Constitution’s proponents promised that this would not happen. As the losers in that debate, they are largely overlooked today. But that does not mean they were wrong or that we are not indebted to them.

In many ways, the group has been misnamed. Federalism refers to the system of decentralized government. This group defended states rights — the very essence of federalism — against the Federalists, who would have been more accurately described as Nationalists. Nonetheless, what the so-called Antifederalists predicted would be the results of the Constitution turned out to be true in most every respect.

The Antifederalists warned us that the cost Americans would bear in both liberty and resources for the government that would evolve under the Constitution would rise sharply. That is why their objections led to the Bill of Rights, to limit that tendency (though with far too little success that has survived to the present).

Antifederalists opposed the Constitution on the grounds that its checks on federal power would be undermined by expansive interpretations of promoting the “general welfare” (which would be claimed for every law) and the “all laws necessary and proper” clause (which would be used to override limits on delegated federal powers), creating a federal government with unwarranted and undelegated powers that were bound to be abused.

One could quibble with the mechanisms the Antifederalists predicted would lead to constitutional tyranny. For instance, they did not foresee that the Commerce Clause would come to be called “the everything clause” in law schools, used by centralizers to justify almost any conceivable federal intervention. The 20th-century distortion of the clause’s original meaning was so great even the vigilant Antifederalists could never have imagined the government getting away with it.

And they could not have foreseen how the Fourteenth Amendment and its interpretation would extend federal domination over the states after the Civil War. But it is very difficult to argue with their conclusions from the current reach of our government, not just to forcibly intrude upon, but often to overwhelm Americans today.

Therefore, it merits remembering the Antifederalists’ prescient arguments and how unfortunate is the virtual absence of modern Americans who share their concerns.

One of the most insightful of the Antifederalists was Robert Yates, a New York judge who, as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, withdrew because the convention was exceeding its instructions. Yates wrote as Brutus in the debates over the Constitution. Given his experience as a judge, his claim that the Supreme Court would become a source of almost unlimited federal over-reaching was particularly insightful.

Brutus asserted that the Supreme Court envisioned under the Constitution would become a source of massive abuse because they were beyond the control “both of the people and the legislature,” and not subject to being “corrected by any power above them.” As a result, he objected to the fact that its provisions justifying the removal of judges didn’t include making rulings that went beyond their constitutional authority, which would lead to judicial tyranny.

Brutus argued that when constitutional grounds for making rulings were absent, the Court would create grounds “by their own decisions.” He thought that the power it would command would be so irresistible that the judiciary would use it to make law, manipulating the meanings of arguably vague clauses to justify it.

The Supreme Court would interpret the Constitution according to its alleged “spirit”, rather than being restricted to just the “letter” of its written words (as the doctrine of enumerated rights, spelled out in the Tenth Amendment, would require).

Further, rulings derived from whatever the court decided its spirit was would effectively “have the force of law,” due to the absence of constitutional means to “control their adjudications” and “correct their errors”. This constitutional failing would compound over time in a “silent and imperceptible manner”, through precedents that built on one another.

Expanded judicial power would empower justices to shape the federal government however they desired, because the Supreme Court’s constitutional interpretations would control the effective power vested in government and its different branches. That would hand the Supreme Court ever-increasing power, in direct contradiction to Alexander Hamilton’s argument in Federalist 78 that the Supreme Court would be “the least dangerous branch.”

Brutus predicted that the Supreme Court would adopt “very liberal” principles of interpreting the Constitution. He argued that there had never in history been a court with such power and with so few checks upon it, giving the Supreme Court “immense powers” that were not only unprecedented, but perilous for a nation founded on the principle of consent of the governed. Given the extent to which citizens’ power to effectively withhold their consent from federal actions has been eviscerated, it is hard to argue with Brutus’s conclusion.

He further warned that the new government would not be restricted in its taxing power, and that the legislatures war power was highly dangerous: “the power in the federal legislative, to raise and support armies at pleasure, as well in peace as in war, and their controul over the militia, tend, not only to a consolidation of the government, but the destruction of liberty.”

He also objected to the very notion that a republican form of government can work well over such a vast territory, even the relatively small territory as compared with today’s US:

History furnishes no example of a free republic, anything like the extent of the United States. The Grecian republics were of small extent; so also was that of the Romans. Both of these, it is true, in process of time, extended their conquests over large territories of country; and the consequence was, that their governments were changed from that of free governments to those of the most tyrannical that ever existed in the world.

What you think you know might not be true

Brutus accurately described both the cause (the absence of sufficient enforceable restraints on the size and scope of the federal government) and the consequences (expanding burdens and increasing invasions of liberty) of what would become the expansive federal powers we now see all around us.

But today, Brutus would conclude that he had been far too optimistic. The federal government has grown orders of magnitudes larger than he could ever have imagined (in part because he was writing when only indirect  taxes and the small federal government they could finance were possible, before the 16th Amendment opened the way for a federal income tax in 1913), far exceeding its constitutionally enumerated powers, despite the constraints of the Bill of Rights. The result burdens citizens beyond his worst nightmare.

The judicial tyranny that was accurately and unambiguously predicted by Brutus and other Antifederalists shows that in essential ways, they were right and that modern Americans still have a lot to learn from them. We need to understand their arguments and take them seriously now, if there is to be any hope of restraining the federal government to the limited powers it was actually granted in the Constitution, or even anything close to them, given its current tendency to accelerate its growth beyond them.


And so. Questions for our time. Is Freedom suicide? Nay young thinkers, it be life. Is power evil? Nay young thinker. Only people make it good or evil. Are people good, or evil; Your answer places you yourself in the camp of your answer.

Your actions, on a daily basis make you what you are. Your thoughts define what you wish your actions will be. Your personal integrity will be defined by how you divide the realities of life between those two factors.

Warriors have no difficulty with the sum of the math above. Most, do not know that they are indeed Warriors.

Look within yourself. If you find honesty then look to the rest of the world. If not, then look to those that are what you lack. No single person is perfect. Learning never ends.

Anger and Hurt in Colorado … again

September 27, 2006

By now I am sure that anyone that does not have their head in a hole in the ground knows that again in Colorado, there has been another tragedy at a high school.

Today some pathetic excuse for a human being made his way into  a High School and took six hostages. He released four over a period of hours. Then apparently made threats about a certain time, and consequences. (16:00 hours[PM])

As the time approached this misfit cut off communication. The Police, GOD BLESS THEM, did a dynamic entry. The coward perpetrator popped off a round or two at the good guys, then shot  one of the girls in the head. Killing her. He then turned the weapon on himself, with the same result.

The investigation continues, and an entire state grieves. More to follow, as this is a developing thing.

Valhalla, the price of Freedom

September 25, 2006

On this thread shall be posted the tomes of those that have given the ultimate sacrifice. I am a Marine Corps brat, and have an affinity for Paratroopers as well. My failings should in no way make any less the sacrifices of those that are not Infantry. Post memorials here as any see fit with the respect deserved.

First Call

In Memoriam: Ranger Gilbert Jenkins

Major, US Army, Retired

The following biography and tribute was written by USARA President Jim Grimshaw following Ranger Jenkins’ death.
 

USARA mourns the death of Major Gilbert K. Jenkins, USA Ret.

Ranger Jenkins, Life Member of USARA, died on 7 April 2003 at the Peachtree Christian Hospice, Duluth, GA. He was buried 10 April at Hillcrest Cemetary, Savannah, GA with full military honors provided by 1st Bn 75th Rangers.

He was a native of Savannah and a resident of Suwanee, GA. He was a graduate of Armstrong State College, Savannah.

Gil was an enlisted man in the 82d Abn Div, 101st Abn Div and Special Forces and served in Laos. He enlisted in the Army when he was 15 years old and was in the 82d Abn Div. When they learned he was underage, he was discharged, only to join up again a couple of years later. Upon graduation from Infantry OCS, he was Honor Graduate of his Ranger Course.

He served in the 5th and 6th Special Forces Groups and the 82d Abn Div as an officer, as well as Forces Command. He spent four tours in Vietnam, graduated from Helicopter Flight School and commanded an Aviation Company as a Captain in Vietnam. He was a Ranger Instructor and S4 in the Florida Ranger Camp, Auxiliary Field #7 in 1967/68 with me in between Vietnam tours and flight school. In 1966 as a First Lieutenant, he was assigned to the 5th SFG Mobile Guerrilla Strike Force, “Mike Force”, and was a key leader in two highly successful “Blackjack” operations deep into enemy territory and far from friendly support.

He was a battalion S3 and XO in the 82d Abn Div. At FORSCOM he was the Ranger Coordinator when the 1st and 2d Ranger Battalions were activated, and his primary responsibility was insuring the battalions had the personnel, weapons and equipment to fight on to the Ranger objective. He evaluated 1/75 in an ORT. He was a key player in the process to approve and organize Delta Force and evaluated their combat readiness. He was highly thought of by these units and senior officers because of his leadership, special operations skills and passionate support of Rangers and Delta Force.

But most of all, he was an extraordinary husband and father. He was nominated to be the Aide-de-Camp of the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, but he chose to retire so he could devote more time to his family.

Gil was my best Special Forces/Ranger friend. The “Big Ranger in the Sky” told me I should make sure everyone understands that I love him and I will miss him. He was a great influence in my life, a great warrior hero to his family, his country and most of all, to me. Gil was the personification of the quiet professional, but when he spoke, he meant what he said.

Gil is survived by his lovely wife Joyce, three sons and several grandchildren, his father and sister and several other family members. His son Keith was a member of 1/75 in the early 1980’s and his son Tracey served in 1/75 and then 3/75 in Mogadishu. His son Bobby is a successful businessman in Florida.

I forced Gil to join USARA about three years ago when we were having dinner in Savannah. I threatened to whip his ass if he didn’t join and write me a check on the spot for a Life Membership! Gil was the personification of an Airborne Ranger Infantryman Special Forces Hero and he will always be with me in spirit! De Oppresso Liber and Rangers Lead The Way!

Please accept my apologies for indulging your association president in expressing his feelings for his best friend. I am saddened by Gil’s passing, but I am rejoicing in the knowledge that he is with the “Big Ranger in the Sky” and is in the best Patrol Base leading one of God’s patrols.

(signed) USARA President Jim Grimshaw

source;

http://www.ranger.org/bio-Gilbert-Jenkins.html

Edited for a mis-spell; “Major” does not refer to myself, check the link.

The Socialist Man

September 25, 2006

Socialist Man in the Big Easy

By Vedran Vuk

Posted on 9/25/2006
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Marxists long theorized that communism would bring about the new socialist man. Through communist programs, man would turn his sole purpose to laboring and struggling for the greater good of the collective.

Through socialist policies and redistribution, New Orleans has raised from its ruin a new socialist man. However, instead of working for the collective, this risen New Orleans man does not work at all. He does not live for the collective but lives at the expense of the collective. This reality is drastically different from what Marxists had in mind when referring to the man created from socialism.

To a person with common sense, this seems like an obvious outcome. If you give money to those who stay unemployed, you are not teaching them to work. Rather, you are teaching them how to survive without working.

Let’s begin with the supposed housing shortage in New Orleans. The government is giving more and more trailers to the citizens of the city. Even the officials of the city constantly talk about the “housing shortage.” Every New Orleanian knows differently.

A simple look at Craigslist.org reveals the plentitude of homes available in the area. These are houses available for rent on just one website which hardly represents all rentable properties in New Orleans.

If there are houses available, why do people still request trailers? It’s really simple. Free is always better. Sure, there are homes available but who wants to pay when they don’t have to. The government interprets this demand as a housing shortage. At price zero, demand is as much as people want. The realities of availability are thrown to the side so that these bureaucrats can get even more money to bribe disgruntled voters with free trailers calling the problem a “housing shortage.”

Personally, I know people who were renting an apartment, and then received a trailer from the government. Their next step was to move out of the apartment. Their problem was not finding a place or even paying rent. But as I said, free is always better especially when someone else foots the bill.

Now the next issue is jobs. We all know that jobs are plentiful in New Orleans and are paying outstanding wages. Recently, I saw Taco Bell in Slidell hiring at $11/hour. Here’s another list of jobs available to low-skilled workers in New Orleans from Craig’s List.

Why is the murder rate for July in New Orleans higher than last year with half the population around? These jobs are available with great wages! Living wage advocates always talk about how everything would be solved when wages for low skilled labor were around $10-15/hour. Well, here we have it leftists! Take a big look. The wages are at the living wage rate, yet employers are desperate to find employees. Anyone who applies for a job is often hired on the spot before the entire application is even filled out.

In the face of these opportunities, the crime rate grows. Conservatives and libertarians are often accused of having a vicious and maligned view of the poor on welfare as lazy. I don’t think that welfare recipients of New Orleans are naturally lazy, but I believe that our socialist policies have made them so. People simply don’t want to work anymore. They would rather do nothing and live on barely anything than consider work.

$25

Can a left-liberal please e-mail me with their reasoning on why these people are committing crime instead of working when there are countless jobs at outstanding wages? The living wage is here. Dare to look at the situation! People are still not working. It’s not the wage that must be changed. It is the mindset of people that must be altered or these problems will persist. The welfare culture must be abolished for the good of everyone in this country. If this is not done, crime and murder will continue in the face of high wages, as has been happening in the Big Easy.

The accelerated rate in transfer payments to Katrina victims has resulted in an accelerated rate of crime not just in New Orleans but in Houston and Jackson, Mississippi as well. If you want to help the poor, don’t start by talking about higher wages. Start by talking about the welfare system and its effects. New Orleans has shown that high wages and job opportunities are not enough in the face of a subsidized mentality of redistributionist policies.

The welfare state must be destroyed to begin the process of change. New Orleans has shown that high wages and plentiful job opportunities are not enough. Every piece of the coercive redistributionist regime must be taken apart. Decades of welfare have created this new socialist man of New Orleans. Stripping welfare is the only solution as market-driven wages are not enough to return society back to its natural order.


Vedran Vuk is a student of Economics at Loyola University of New Orleans. Send him mail. See his articles. Comment on the blog.

This is a very clear and concise explanation of exactly why socialism fails on a continuing basis.

Citgo and International politics

September 25, 2006

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingVenezuelan Dictator Vows To Bring Down U.S. Government…The Venezuelan government is sole owner of Citgo gasoline company…

Venezuelan Dictator, Hugo Chavez, has vowed to bring down the U.S. government…Chavez, president of Venezuela, told a TV audience, “Enough of imperialist aggression, we must tell the world, down with the U.S. empire. We have to bury imperialism this century.”The guest on his television program, which was beamed across Venezuela

, was Cindy Sheehan, the antiwar activist…Chavez recently had as his guest Harry Belafonte, who called President Bush “the greatest terrorist in the world.”Chavez is pushing a socialist revolution and has a close alliance with Cuban dictator Fidel Castro…

Regardless of your feelings about the war in Iraq, the issue here is that we have a socialist dictator vowing to bring down the government of the U.S.

And he is using our money to achieve his goal!!

The Venezuelan government, run by dictator Chavez, is the sole owner of Citgo  gas company, sales of products at Citgo stations send money back to Chavez to help him in his ‘vow’ to bring down our government… Take Action…Please, make the decision that you will not be shopping at a Citgo station…Why should U.S. citizens who love freedom be financing a dictator who has vowed to take down our government??

Please forward this to your friends and family. Most of them don’t know that Citgo is owned by the Venezuelan government…YOU CAN VERIFY THIS ON THE CITGO WEB PAGE:
CITGO.com, About CITGO

Additional: The company is owned by PDV America, Inc., an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.To JOIN the BOYCOTT CITGO Blog Roll click HERE !! 

I am a Free Market supporter to the max. I choose to use my free market earnings some place other than Citgo.

Another Election year fiasco

September 24, 2006

Here in Colorado we are yet again gearing up for another election year fiasco. There is more mudslinging than one might see in a pig trough. For the record…

  • I really do not care about what someone did in the past re: Failure to have a squeaky clean credit report.
  • I really could care less about minor legal transgressions, especially when it occurred years ago.
  • I find taking something completely out of context and splashing it all over the airwaves to be less than honorable, to say the least.
  • Making claims about supporting the Constitution and then supporting laws that clearly contradict that position are an acid test of personal honesty.
  • No, just because you have graduated from a law school does not make you superior to the rest of society.
  • No, your military record may be admirable. But that was then, and now is now.
  • No, I myself, and most others do not have some great need of your leadership because we the people are just to stupid to run our own lives.

Indeed, given all the rhetoric of late I am just disgusted.

Word Games

September 18, 2006

50 years of expediential matrimony, is the death knell sounding for the foremost political union of our time? In his new book, The Elephant in the Room: Evangelicals, Libertarians, and the Battle to Control the Republican Party, New York Post columnist Ryan Sager contends that the ”fusion“ of moral traditionalists and libertarians, long the bulwark of the Republican Party, is on the brink of ruin.Following a courtship based on utilitarian aims—libertarianism’s smaller-government guards against the moral corruption feared by traditionalists—the marriage of convenience affected the Republican sweep of government. Basking in their newfound power, says Sager, Republicans exchanged the principle of small government for a promise of benevolent government, endangering their unifying conviction and threatening to produce a party foreign to both conservatism and liberty.

Sager’s thesis is compelling, but we would offer a slightly different take. (Many evangelicals are, after all, libertarians.) The primary fissure in the Republican Party is not between libertarians and evangelicals, but between libertarians and conservatives. The former compares apples and oranges—a philosophy of government versus a religious worldview—while the latter frames the issue more precisely. Whereas libertarians seek to minimize government to the greatest extent possible in every situation, conservatives are constitutionalists: They want government to be strong where to Constitution so dictates, and nonexistent where the Constitution is silent.

Will Republicans continue to hide behind the faccade of marital bliss? Or will they confront the elephant in the room and recommit to limited government? Unchecked, the marital feud—whoever you consider the participants to be—promises to end in annulment, leaving true Republicanism, the lone child of the union, to suffer most.

Source: 15 September 2006    |    PatriotPost.US    |    Patriot Vol. 06 No. 37

In my years of reading the Patriot Post this is the first time that I have to greatly differ from what they had to say.

First; Libertarians are not at all for smaller government at all cost. They are the ones that have tried for so long, and worked so hard for full, and strong enforcement of the Constitution. ( I am not calling the current CLP a part of Libertarianism here.) All of it, and not just the parts that this, or that group happen to like. Who was it that has always sought to protect the small from the tyranny of the majority? Sure as heck wasn’t the conservatives of the Republican Party. Who was it that brought us the Brady Bill, that masterpiece of killing the Constitution? It wasn’t the Libertarians. Who got us into a war that targeted oppression..? OK, it was Liberty minded people from across the board.

Islam means submission, Libertarianism means Freedom. Figure it out folks, most Americans have a solid streak of Libertarianism in them.

NRA focuses on states

September 18, 2006

The National Rifle Association has discovered that battles in state legislatures are often more easily won than those in Washington. Their strategy has adapted accordingly. While there is little regarding guns going on in Congress at the moment, the NRA has been extremely busy across the country, achieving victory after victory in state legislatures. In the last 12 years, 23 states have passed laws allowing citizens to carry firearms—Nebraska and Kansas just this year. Fifteen states now have “stand your ground” laws allowing potential victims to use deadly force with a gun to stop an attack. Also, as we found during Katrina, laws against “emergency” gun confiscation are necessary, and ten states have passed them (a federal bill is also in Congress).

The NRA’s success has been so pronounced at the state level that Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre noted, “The closer we get back home, the stronger we are.” Even the Brady Campaign admits that.

Source: 15 September 2006    |    PatriotPost.US    |    Patriot Vol. 06 No. 37

Now, if the NRA would just back off their position that what we need is to enforce the gun laws that we have, and go to the more correct position that we need to abandon the many unconstitutional gun laws many of us would get back to supporting the NRA financially.

For now, I will continue to give my valuable pennies and dimes to GOA.

Life in the Rocky Mountains

September 13, 2006

Hills awash in bugling, changing colors

Matt McClain © News

A bull elk grazes at Rocky Mountain National Park on Tuesday morning. The park is experiencing the beginning of fall with the changing of the aspen trees and the fall rut, or mating season, for elk. There are more than 3,000 elk in the park. Admiring humans can look for them in meadows and where meadow meets forest.

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Slowly but surely, autumn is creeping down the mountains.The aspens have begun to turn golden above 10,000 feet in Rocky Mountain National Park.

The leaves below 10,000 feet should start turning in the next week or so, according to Shirley Baudek, a 15-year resident of Estes Park and wife of town Mayor John Baudek.

Folks living below Estes Park will have to wait before they notice the aspens changing around their homes, she said.

“Well, you can see them from our house. You can see them changing up high,” Baudek said. “The other day, there was the sun shining on the peaks, and it was just golden and beautiful.”

Also coming down in droves from the higher elevations in Rocky Mountain National Park are the elk. Many already have made it to town, residents said.

Baudek said as the air gets cooler, as it has been in recent weeks, and the elk mating season starts to warm up, herds move downhill and bull elks jostle for cows and unleash their bugling cries.

Baudek said town residents often question why tourists and visitors head into Rocky Mountain National Park to look for wildlife when they can stay in town and see the elk.

“Oh, my gosh, they’re around my house,” Baudek said.

“At 2 in the morning the other day, they were bugling. It just starts now in September and goes through October pretty much, and the calves are born in late May or early June.

“We have a calf born in our yard every year, and we had one born under our deck last year.”

One of the reasons that I came to Colorado was the incredible hunting and fishing opportunities. This year is pretty well shot due to having had surgery on my arm. It is doubtful that I will ever pull a bow again. Yet I relish the memories of being in the high country and coming within a few feet of timber bucks, huge bull elk, and on two occasions a full curl ram.

Colorado, there simply is no other place like it on earth.


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