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Archive for the ‘Texas’ Category

So I was just in the car and heard that a “Federal Study” on the Joplin tornado has concluded that stronger building codes and a better detection and early warning system could have saved lives.

Now back in the 80s when we heard stories on mohair subsidies, $500 hammers and toilet seats, and federal studies on katchup flow rates, the fact that the Feds were setting $100 bills on fire, stacks at a time, for “NO DUH!” moments like this was slightly amusing. But now that we have a debt approaching $20 TRILLION DOLLARS, there isn’t anything to smile about.

But even worse than that is the idea that this kind of thing should even be something the Feds are involved with. Any single process that can be performed by man can be made SAFER. The question is “At what point does the cost in doing so become prohibitive?”, and let’s face it. The same government that spent 3/4s of a Billion on a healthcare insurance portal website that doesn’t work nearly as well as ecommerce sites put together for a FRACTION of the taxpayer dollars pissed away on Healthcare.gov shouldn’t be the ones you trust to make that decision, even IF it had the authority to do so.

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Remember when Rush Limbaugh had forever tainted the reputation of professional activist and rabble-rouser Sandra Fluke when he called her an unflattering name when she demanded that a nominally catholic institution, Georgetown University, supply THOUSANDS of dollars to individual female students annually?  This was another major engagement in the “War on Women”, which forever proved that those eeeeeeeevvvvviiiiiillllll conservatives really hate women because they aren’t willing to accept the idea that a religious-based institution should be compelled to go against its conscience and guiding principles to supply contraceptives to students who voluntarily chose to attend the institution, knowing that this “demand” would be controversial, and frankly reveal those making the demand to be unreasonable, sniveling ingrates.  And when Rush happened to suggest that a law student at a top-tier law school who is obsessed with extorting THOUSANDS of dollars worth of contraceptives for individual students annually might be working toward a career in the wrong profession, an entire segment of society that would not recognize shame if it walked up to them, beat them up, and stole their money suddenly rediscovered the concept and, with all the outrage they could muster, rushed to her defense, claiming it was he who had sullied her reputation, while breathing fire, and sipping on kitten and puppy shakes.  It never once occurred to these stalwart defenders of Ms. Fluke’s virtue that perhaps it was she who had accomplished that with her dubious, attention-grabbing demands.

Flash forward a year, and we have the aftermath of a trial of an abortion “doctor” (yeah, Mengle went by that appellation also, and look what HE did) which the media had to be shamed into covering at all, despite the fact that his clinic was found to be filthy, not just unsanitary, filled with all manner of gruesome trophies collected over a lifetime of murdering both the not-yet-born, and the newly born, while largely not giving a damn about the health and welfare of his “patients”, leading to death for some of them.  Yet, like committed party members who were taken to the concentration camps and still denied the atrocities committed in them, the hardcore abortion proponents, in the face of undeniable evidence, maintained that this “right” was sacrosanct, and NO regulation of the “industry” would be tolerated. (Thus voiding the second of the three prongs of their decades-old battle cry “Safe, Rare, and Legal”.)  Against this backdrop, the state of Texas decided that some regulations should be put in place to maintain minimum safe conditions, so that women who decided to kill their unborn children might not have to be butchered by the incompetent, or contract deadly infections from unsanitary conditions and unwashed instruments.  Oh, and they decided that late-term abortion really shouldn’t be allowed either, so they inserted a provision in the bill banning abortions after 20 weeks.  (For the math-challenged among you, 20 weeks is 5 Months. )

The bloodthirsty harpie lobby remained true to their word, and attacked the law, bizarrely concluding that being prevented from killing your unborn child after you have carried him or her around in your womb for FIVE MONTHS is somehow a government seizure of your body, the rescission of an important constitutional right, and probably involuntary servitude as well.  On the night the legislature was to vote, one of their allies in the legislature filibustered until she could hold out no longer, then smiled as her co-conspirators in the galleries made a voice vote under normal circumstances impossible, and the time for passing the bill expired. 

The legislature has again taken up the bill, and the blood money lobby and its useful idiots have lost their collective minds.  Protests with these women using CHILDREN, carrying signs with coat-hangers (to protest a bill that would require SAFER conditions), replacing the Texas Longhorns logo with a uterus, reading a ridiculous “If My Vagina Was A Gun” poem, and protesting with a number of signs that can only lead a reasonable witness to believe that not only are these poor, put-upon women nothing more than the sum of their lady parts, but that they proudly think so little of themselves that they refer to themselves as “Hoes”.  Then the articles from the “bro-choicers“, who think that the unrestricted right to abortion is crucial, because otherwise, they might have to actually face the consequences of their animalistic, instinctual sport screwing.  (I knew that not all men in favor of unrestricted abortions were whiney, sniveling beta males…I just never expected the alpha douches to be so open in their support, or that these women would think so little of themselves that they would gladly accept it.)

The Sum of Her Lad

Which brings me to today, where these civil paragons of the pro-death movement discussed plans to attend today’s session and hurl body waste at legislators and at counter-demonstrators, which is yet more evidence of the depths that the “tolerant” left is willing to sink to in order to insure that the rest of us will do and allow only what THEY are tolerant of.  And then I saw this:

Dignity, Always Dignity

And this:

Dignity 2

To the adults who are throwing away every principle previously claimed as part of this private right to murder in the single-minded pursuit to retain the right to kill your children regardless of not just the hazard to them, but also to yourselves, that’s fine. I have no qualms with the world seeing you frantically rally around the only thing in life that you will squander everything to keep…your principles, the moral high ground you always claimed but never occupied, and finally, your dignity, in a way that makes it unmistakable that you always expected and demanded that everyone else think more of you than you obviously thought of yourself. Some of us knew that was the only bottom line that mattered to you, and the rest was for show anyway, even as we always accepted the idea that you could be more than the sum of your lady parts, and that it should be secondary to your identity as a person, rather than the beginning and end of your personal and collective raison d’etre.

But when you subvert children (and let’s be honest, the girls in the previous two pictures are CHILDREN), and convince them to debase themselves by embracing vulgarity and barbarity, so that your blood lust can continue to fund an industry that kills girls and boys indescriminately FOR MONEY, you have taken what was never yours to have, from children who could no more give their informed consent to be used in such a crass and callous manner than they could to having surgery performed without the consent of someone older and wiser, usually a parent or guardian. Unless she elects to have an abortion. In which case, she undoubtedly could be whisked away in the company of strangers to snuff her child without her parents’ knowledge or consent.

You are detestable, and will be a byword to future generations, to whom your madness and fatal self-absorption will be painfully obvious.

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What do you get for the kleptocratic statist who has everything?

Your children.

MSNBC host and whackjob (BIRM) Melissa Harris-Perry wants you to know that we don’t spend enough on education because we just don’t realize that our children belong to everyone.

http://www.mrctv.org/videos/shorter-melissa-harris-perry-all-your-kids-are-belong-us

Of course, when you are aligned with a mindset that thinks it acceptable to kill your own children, it was probably inevitable to look upon other people’s kids as a resource for redistribution.  Afterall, it’s hard work maintaining a culture of filth, stupidity, and subservience when those most in favor of it have fewer children than those who oppose it.  And the idea that we need to pay even more to a system that already is failing and giving us dumb kids is precious.  But than, government is the only place where incompetence, illogical, and failure is rewarded.  The saddest part of this is that the majority of the people on the receiving end of this pitch are the product of …public schools, and will likely accept the opinions of the “experts” on this matter.  All it typically takes is saying that “IT’S FOR THE CHHHHIIIIIIIILLDREN!!!111!!!”

Next, who can forget that classic Obama knee-slapper “I do think that at a certain point, you’ve made enough money.”?

Well, it was probably only a matter of time before our great father Obama would let us know that “At some point, you’ve saved enough money.” too.  And thankfully, under his watch, government is right there to tell us when that is.

From The Hill:

President Obama’s budget, to be released next week, will limit how much wealthy individuals – like Mitt Romney – can keep in IRAs and other retirement accounts.

And remember, comrade, the government has NEVER arbitrarily changed the definition of “wealthy” when there was money to be confiscated taxed.  Like when the 16th Amendment was passed to tax only “the wealthy”.

The proposal would save around $9 billion over a decade, a senior administration official said, while also bringing more fairness to the tax code.

The magic of government accounting…that fantastic world where taking someone else’s earnings, levying a not-insignificant handling charge, then distributing it to some one who didn’t earn it, or spending it on such profound endeavors as alcoholism rates among Chinese hookers, and federally funded sex-education classes for Kindergarteners is “bringing fairness to the tax code”. It should go without saying that what is being “saved” is the government’s ability to buy votes with someone else’s money.

The senior administration official said that wealthy taxpayers can currently “accumulate many millions of dollars in these accounts, substantially more than is needed to fund reasonable levels of retirement saving.”

Ahh, yes. That new benchmark of “fairness”, an arbitrary determination of the OWNER’S “needs”, decided entirely by a government that refuses to live within our means…meaning that it is really talking about ITS needs. (Those lavish vacations and hookers and blow for the Secret Service don’t come cheap, doncha know) While this same mantra has met with limited success among people who refuse take responsibility for their own safety, and don’t want YOU to either, I think it’s safe to say that government’s determination of “need” in this matter will meet with even less success than the drumbeat about not “needing” a Sig or a Glock or an AR for hunting.

Under the plan, a taxpayer’s tax-preferred retirement account, like an IRA, could not finance more than $205,000 per year of retirement – or right around $3 million this year.

I can remember when $250,000 a year was the government’s benchmark for “rich”. Can you?

Romney, Obama’s 2012 opponent, had an IRA several to many times that amount, leading to questions about how the former Massachusetts governor was able to squirrel away so much money in that sort of retirement account.

The problem is not everyone donates money to the President like the heads of Solyndra, Sun Power, and other “green energy” graft schemes. Sometimes, they actually earn it through hard work. And this is why this Administration is clueless about finances. Because it NEVER occurs to them that while you might be limited in annual contributions to IRAs, not all IRAs are simply glorified bank accounts. Some are managed investments, that take risks with the money in order to get increased returns. But again, unless you made your fortune from government or your association with it, all these people see is money that they want.

And for your last thought…

I was eating lunch today and reading about another gun manufacturer that made the decision to leave one of the states that has gone full retard after Sandy Hook and passed blatantly unconstitutional gun “control” laws.  As this had been going on for a few weeks now, I have had a certain measure of amusement in watching this, but then I thought “If I were totalitarian narcissist with delusions of adequacy who chaffed at the restraints that the Constitution necessarily placed on me, and I might want to resort to a desperate ultra vires act against an industry that could be a threat to me realizing my aspirations of power, would I want to have to “seize” facilities scattered across states in all regions of the country, or would I want to only have to concentrate on one region?

Suddenly, it was less amusing than it had been a few minutes before.

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…actually, A LOT of people’s teaching credentials need to be reconsidered, but I’d be happy to start with this guy’s.  Louis Michael Seidman is a …Lord help us…a Constitutional Law professor at Georgetown University.

He wrote this incredibly insipid fap piece for the New York Times in which he predictably laments the archaic nature of the Constitution, and those damn restrictions on the Federal Government.  It is a perfect example of how we screwed up the blueprint, based on the advice of such fine academic minds as Professor Seidman, only to then hear he, and others like him ,then declare what their shortsighted meddling broke to be “Broken”.

AS the nation teeters at the edge of fiscal chaos, observers are reaching the conclusion that the American system of government is broken. But almost no one blames the culprit: our insistence on obedience to the Constitution, with all its archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions.

No, you idiot.  The culprit is the combination of ivory towers and empty skulls that promoted ideas like the 16th and 17th Amendments that enabled the Federal Government to bloat like a tick engorged on the blood of its host, while removing any state representation in the Federal Government, allowing it to take over all manner of things that it was never granted any authority to address, because it had the financial means to do so, and had effectively subjugated the co-sovereigns in the Federal system.

Consider, for example, the assertion by the Senate minority leader last week that the House could not take up a plan by Senate Democrats to extend tax cuts on households making $250,000 or less because the Constitution requires that revenue measures originate in the lower chamber. Why should anyone care? Why should a lame-duck House, 27 members of which were defeated for re-election, have a stranglehold on our economy? Why does a grotesquely malapportioned Senate get to decide the nation’s fate?

Consider, for example, the utter lack of comprehension of the fact by an “expert” that the power of the purse should rest exclusively in the hands of those who have the shortest terms of office, thus to increase their accountability for what they do with it to thems what brung ‘em.

Our obsession with the Constitution has saddled us with a dysfunctional political system, kept us from debating the merits of divisive issues and inflamed our public discourse. Instead of arguing about what is to be done, we argue about what James Madison might have wanted done 225 years ago.

NO, you argue about what James Madison might have wanted done 225 years ago.  I argue about why Madison wanted those things done that way.  It has a lot to do with the fact that the people who argued for and against the document having a much better grasp of human nature, than silly Georgetown Constitutional Law professors.  But then, you’d know that if you actually bothered to read The Federalist Papers and the Anti-Federalist Papers.  They understood that it has always been a tendency of government to gather more and more power onto itself, usually at the expense of the governed.

As someone who has taught constitutional law for almost 40 years, I am ashamed it took me so long to see how bizarre all this is. Imagine that after careful study a government official — say, the president or one of the party leaders in Congress — reaches a considered judgment that a particular course of action is best for the country. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room with new information: a group of white propertied men who have been dead for two centuries, knew nothing of our present situation, acted illegally under existing law and thought it was fine to own slaves might have disagreed with this course of action. Is it even remotely rational that the official should change his or her mind because of this divination?

As someone who has been studying it for more than 20 years, I am ashamed that a professor of the subject frames his sophistry in such simplistic terms.  First for perpetuating the idea that an elected official in modern times reaches judgment on any course of action that is “best for the country”.  Any practiced observer of the Federal government knows that such an idea would be roundly rejected, and that its proponent would be demonized and vilified at every turn in the feverswamp on the Potomac.  One need only look no farther than “the fiscal cliff” nonsense to see the truth of this, because only in a place largely unfettered from the bounds of reality, like Congress, or the White House, could one seriously subscribe to the notion that you correct a debt created by an obscene spending habit by spending more.  But to then characterize the Constitution and the government  it created as “illegal under existing law” completely disregards the nub of our contention with England, which was the fact that our rights under English law were being subverted by a system of government that did not even pay us the courtesy of token representation and the ostensible ability to dissent, and suggest a different course of action.  It was this recognition that the rights of man were superior than the laws that robbed man of them that made the endeavor a worthy one, because the first duty of government is to punish evil, not to commit it.  It was by no means perfect in its execution, and the men who birthed this new nation and the bylaws that would govern it understood the inconsistency between seeking freedom, while denying it others.  Many of them lamented this compromise, and took it as a great moral failing, even as some of them perpetuated the institution themselves.  But that doesn’t change the fact that it was still a superior system to all that had come before, and carried with it the potential to correct this problem, although I doubt any of them would have properly countenanced the amount of blood that would be shed to do it.  Your silly characterization also does nothing to acknowledge that the government we rebelled against also retained this institution, although not as long as we did, and managed to end it without the horrific bloodshed that accompanied it here.

Constitutional disobedience may seem radical, but it is as old as the Republic. In fact, the Constitution itself was born of constitutional disobedience. When George Washington and the other framers went to Philadelphia in 1787, they were instructed to suggest amendments to the Articles of Confederation, which would have had to be ratified by the legislatures of all 13 states. Instead, in violation of their mandate, they abandoned the Articles, wrote a new Constitution and provided that it would take effect after ratification by only nine states, and by conventions in those states rather than the state legislatures.

And yet, while the approval of the product of that convention (which was always planned by Madison and Hamilton to replace, rather than patch) was not unanimous, it made the weaknesses and flaws of the Articles of Confederation impossible to ignore, which was the point.  The difference here is that while the blueprint has been significantly altered by people who refused to consider the reasons for the parts they have changed, resulting in a many-headed hydra that hurts more than it helps, largely because it exceeds its authority, and these changes have been manifested largely by an amendment process, which should imply even to the dullest of dullards that this same process can be used to rescind these errors.

No sooner was the Constitution in place than our leaders began ignoring it. John Adams supported the Alien and Sedition Acts, which violated the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech. Thomas Jefferson thought every constitution should expire after a single generation. He believed the most consequential act of his presidency — the purchase of the Louisiana Territory — exceeded his constitutional powers.

And, by use of the processes made available by it, the excesses of the Alien and Sedition Acts were brought to heel…as they should have been.  By contrast, neither Congress, nor the taxpayer brought a legal challenge to his purchase of Louisiana, suggesting that there exists a flexibility to the document that is often complained to be non-existent.  It also illustrates that the Constitution doesn’t enforce itself, and that enforcement is necessary, because if left to its own devices, the men who fill elected offices will overreach and usurp that which has not been granted to them.

Before the Civil War, abolitionists like Wendell Phillips and William Lloyd Garrison conceded that the Constitution protected slavery, but denounced it as a pact with the devil that should be ignored. When Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation — 150 years ago tomorrow — he justified it as a military necessity under his power as commander in chief. Eventually, though, he embraced the freeing of slaves as a central war aim, though nearly everyone conceded that the federal government lacked the constitutional power to disrupt slavery where it already existed. Moreover, when the law finally caught up with the facts on the ground through passage of the 13th Amendment, ratification was achieved in a manner at odds with constitutional requirements. (The Southern states were denied representation in Congress on the theory that they had left the Union, yet their reconstructed legislatures later provided the crucial votes to ratify the amendment.)

Your history isn’t quite right.  Lincoln doubted he had authority to free the slaves, and had campaigned with this admission, but the southern states did not believe him, and it wasn’t until the war had already been underway that he issued the Emancipation Proclamation.  Lincoln was guilty of other ultra vires activities during the war with relation to the Constitution, including suspending habeas corpus as it applied to certain members of the press, who successfully argued their cases to the Supreme Court, only to reveal that sometimes being correct doesn’t matter.

In his Constitution Day speech in 1937, Franklin D. Roosevelt professed devotion to the document, but as a statement of aspirations rather than obligations. This reading no doubt contributed to his willingness to extend federal power beyond anything the framers imagined, and to threaten the Supreme Court when it stood in the way of his New Deal legislation. In 1954, when the court decided Brown v. Board of Education, Justice Robert H. Jackson said he was voting for it as a moral and political necessity although he thought it had no basis in the Constitution. The list goes on and on.

And yet, your answer to usurpation and the overreach of government is to simply abolish what limitations currently exist.  Truely, the mind boggles.

The fact that dissenting justices regularly, publicly and vociferously assert that their colleagues have ignored the Constitution — in landmark cases from Miranda v. Arizona to Roe v. Wade to Romer v. Evans to Bush v. Gore — should give us pause. The two main rival interpretive methods, “originalism” (divining the framers’ intent) and “living constitutionalism” (reinterpreting the text in light of modern demands), cannot be reconciled. Some decisions have been grounded in one school of thought, and some in the other. Whichever your philosophy, many of the results — by definition — must be wrong.

Agreed.  Those decisions would be those rooted in the sophistry of “a Living Constitution”, which is really just bullshitese for “We’re going to pretend that it allows us to do this because we wanna do it.”

IN the face of this long history of disobedience, it is hard to take seriously the claim by the Constitution’s defenders that we would be reduced to a Hobbesian state of nature if we asserted our freedom from this ancient text. Our sometimes flagrant disregard of the Constitution has not produced chaos or totalitarianism; on the contrary, it has helped us to grow and prosper.

No, and much of the hinderance on growth and prosperity can be linked directly to government’s flagrant disregard for the limitations that the Constitution places upon it.  Growth and prosperity have occurred not because of government disregarding the Constitution, but in spite of it.  Ask any small business owner who has lost countless hours to the compilation and production of reams of information that government has no business requiring of them.  Ask any farmer who can’t irrigate crops because it would be deemed a threat to a species of fish that no one has ever heard of, or loggers idled because of spotted owls, or businesses that never came into existence and individual consumers who spend too much of their income on basic energy needs because a governmental agency has determined that a naturally occurring gas which is also a byproduct of coal power is a pollutant.  You may suffer brownouts because the EPA wants to regulate coal power out of business due to the production of co2, but has no interest in regulating an iota of co2 produced in Congress.

This is not to say that we should disobey all constitutional commands. Freedom of speech and religion, equal protection of the laws and protections against governmental deprivation of life, liberty or property are important, whether or not they are in the Constitution.

So you’re against the HHS mandate as it applies to businesses owned by the deeply religious, or the Catholic Church, and are against abortion, too?

 We should continue to follow those requirements out of respect, not obligation.

Apparently, I spoke too soon, if you seem to think that we do so now.

Nor should we have a debate about, for instance, how long the president’s term should last or whether Congress should consist of two houses. Some matters are better left settled, even if not in exactly the way we favor.

Fascinating.  I wonder what criteria you use to determine what “decided matters” really are decided without the benefit of a written Constitution setting forth what is decided.

Nor, finally, should we have an all-powerful president free to do whatever he wants.

Who is going to break the news to the current occupant of the Oval Office?  You know, the one that thinks that Executive Orders are an acceptable alternative to an uncooperative Congress?

 Even without constitutional fealty, the president would still be checked by Congress and by the states.

Your naivite’ is astonishing.  This President continually demonstrates that the only time he considers Congress or the states worthy of consideration is when they are in accord with him.  SB 1070 and his declaring Congress to be in recess when it was not so he could appoint who he pleased to federal positions without their intereference consent is all the proof you need.

There is even something to be said for an elite body like the Supreme Court with the power to impose its views of political morality on the country.

Yes.  What is to be said is that to have 9 unelected lifetime appointees imposing anything is tyranny, and contradicts the very nature of a republic.

What would change is not the existence of these institutions, but the basis on which they claim legitimacy.

Certainly.  Because unfettered democracies never devolve into mobocracies, tyrannies, or monarchies.  Those idiots Jay, Hamilton, and Madison (all of whom were obviously better educated than you) had no idea what they were talking about.

The president would have to justify military action against Iran solely on the merits, without shutting down the debate with a claim of unchallengeable constitutional power as commander in chief.

Or we could have a Congress that exercises its lawful authority and call his bluff by cutting of all funding for such operations. But then, that requires greater intestinal fortitude than the current crop in Congress has proven itself capable of.

Congress might well retain the power of the purse, but this power would have to be defended on contemporary policy grounds, not abstruse constitutional doctrine.

If such grounds are deemed abtruse, I submit that it is only because “educators” such as yourself have such poor command of the subject material that you are incapable of rendering such things easily understandable.

The Supreme Court could stop pretending that its decisions protecting same-sex intimacy or limiting affirmative action were rooted in constitutional text.

I’m all for that, but we could get there by actually demanding intellectual honesty from the Nine, including a professional accountability with professional lawyers. By that I mean lawyers who actually practice law, instead of the pretend ones who teach it when they can avoid getting their personal agendas in the way first.

The deep-seated fear that such disobedience would unravel our social fabric is mere superstition. As we have seen, the country has successfully survived numerous examples of constitutional infidelity. And as we see now, the failure of the Congress and the White House to agree has already destabilized the country. Countries like Britain and New Zealand have systems of parliamentary supremacy and no written constitution, but are held together by longstanding traditions, accepted modes of procedure and engaged citizens. We, too, could draw on these resources.

Except that they don’t. Britain continues to trample on its longstanding traditions. Its banning of firearms is a perfect example, as it is directly contrary to what was a longstanding tradition that was essentially codified and described in his Commentaries. I could continue, but the truth is, I’m certain I would just be met with the blank stare that you are undoubtedly giving me now.

What has preserved our political stability is not a poetic piece of parchment, but entrenched institutions and habits of thought and, most important, the sense that we are one nation and must work out our differences.

Wrong. Our political stability is a direct result of the predictability that results from everyone knowing what the rules are, rather than continually making it up as we go along.

No one can predict in detail what our system of government would look like if we freed ourselves from the shackles of constitutional obligation, and I harbor no illusions that any of this will happen soon. But even if we can’t kick our constitutional-law addiction, we can soften the habit.

Actually, I have a pretty good idea of what it would look like, especially since we have such a large percentage of the population accustomed to the idea that it is the role of the government to steal from others on their behalf. As for “softening our Constitutional-law addiction”, that is already happening. We already have “experts” who, instead of Barbie saying “Math is hard”, declare ” The Constitution is outdated. The language is archaic and hard to read, and it was written by old white one percenters who didn’t want to pay their taxes and owned slaves n’ stuff.”

If we acknowledged what should be obvious — that much constitutional language is broad enough to encompass an almost infinitely wide range of positions — we might have a very different attitude about the obligation to obey.

Except that this just isn’t true, and you’d know this if you read The Federalist Papers and the Anti-Federalist Papers. It is only ambiguous or broad if you never bothered to learn what these gentlemen were so kind enough to put into print for posterity. Let me guess…it’s hard n’ stuff, and American Idol was on, right?

It would become apparent that people who disagree with us about the Constitution are not violating a sacred text or our core commitments.

Nonsense. While slavery was a difficult compromise, the only other thing I can point to as an error was the inclusion of “general welfare”, the nature of which they were specifically warned of by “Brutus”, but frankly given the nature of that exchange, the error was in Madison and Hamilton giving this generation and the last too much credit for an intellectual prowess that too many of us have been too lazy to hone.

Instead, we are all invoking a common vocabulary to express aspirations that, at the broadest level, everyone can embrace. Of course, that does not mean that people agree at the ground level. If we are not to abandon constitutionalism entirely, then we might at least understand it as a place for discussion, a demand that we make a good-faith effort to understand the views of others, rather than as a tool to force others to give up their moral and political judgments.

The problem with this line of thinking is that Justice Rehnquist has already explained the errors that are rife in it.

If even this change is impossible, perhaps the dream of a country ruled by “We the people” is impossibly utopian. If so, we have to give up on the claim that we are a self-governing people who can settle our disagreements through mature and tolerant debate. But before abandoning our heritage of self-government, we ought to try extricating ourselves from constitutional bondage so that we can give real freedom a chance.

40 years of studying the Constitution, and you haven’t yet grasped that the Constitution doesn’t constrain us, it limits government, which is a good thing.

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 Dignity: bearing, conduct, or speech indicative of self-respect or appreciation of the formality or gravity of an occasion or situation.

There is no greater indication of just how muddled we have become as a society as when those who have every reason to know better say things that might reflect their opinion, but don’t really make sense.

Friday afternoon, I was in my office, perusing an email thread that was sent to us because we are part of the Elder Law email list-serve, and I read this exchange:

Lawyer One:  This is a moral issue as well as a legal one.  What I tell my clients is that Congress, representing the will of the people, has set up our health care system so that we all are responsible to pay for our own long term care unless we are destitute, i.e., have less than $2,000 in assets.  Under the law he is required to pay for his own care because he can afford it.  If he chooses to take steps to make himself eligible, then he is asking the taxpayers to support him.  Does he want to do that?

Most clients with resources to pay for their own care choose to pay for it themselves.

Personally, I’d prefer a universal health care system, but that’s not what we have in this country.
Lawyer Two:  My somewhat obvious prejudice is for some sort of moral and ethical answer to this dilemma: health and long term care and death with dignity, so that people don’t have to waste their estate.  So, I aggressively want to find a solution because our political/social will has not matured to this point. 

I am getting the drift that there is no current answer.

There is so much fail in this exchange.  From the point of expecting that the taxpayer will pay for long-term care for those who can afford to pay for it themselves, to the idea that a person’s self-respect and bearing can be purchased, and that others should be compelled to purchase it for them, I see a breakdown in logic and a fundamental misuse of the language that is our stock in trade. 

There are some simple truths that are ignored by both officers of the court:

1) Only you can give you dignity.  That is why it is a display of self-respect.  I’ve seen people who have this in the face of sure and certain disdain of everyone surrounding them.  When it is real, no amount of disrespect and derision from others will change it.

2) Compelling others to buy it for you is unjust.  It is not charity, as charity cannot be compelled.

3) I’ve worn my copy of the Constitution out looking for where it is for the Government to provide “dignity” to anyone.  I can’t find it.

4) People do not value what they do not pay for. This is the most pointed truth of them all, and I have seen it played out again and again with people who have the means to pay for their own care who self-impoverish to become eligible for government paid long-term care, as they frantically gift away their entire estate not out of love of the beneficiaries, some of whom they believe to be undeserving, but only to get the care on someone else’s tab.

I find it offensive to suggest that it is somehow “immoral” that we don’t offer long-term care for everyone, paid for by others who are compelled to do so.  I resent the fact that I am increasingly expected to bear this cost, and in so doing, keep less of what I labored to make for the benefit of my own family, while the people who I am paying for can, with planning, divest themselves of everything they have, allowing their own families to keep more of this benefit while taking from mine.

My profession does not do anyone a service when it presumes to confuse that which is permissible with being moral.

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Insanity is apparently the new norm in the feverswamp on the Potomac.
From a professional listserve I subscribe to:

Yesterday Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota introduced S.1744, the Guardian Accountability and Senior Protection Act.  See http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/thomas .  The bill will provide funding for State courts to assess and improve the handling of proceedings relating to adult guardianship and conservatorship, to authorize the Attorney General to carry out a pilot program for the conduct of background checks on individuals to be appointed as guardians or conservators, and to promote the widespread adoption of information technology to better monitor, report, and audit conservatorships of protected persons.
 
Yes, this makes perfect sense.  Congress doesn’t pass a budget for over 900 days, but a Senator sees a burning need for the Federal government to insert itself into yet another area of STATE jurisidiction.
 
I wonder how many borrowed Chinese dollars this will cost…

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Dick and Kelly have been terrific hosts, and thanks to Dick, I have seen a side of Dallas Ft. Worth that most tourists never see.   Michael and Cathy have a beautiful home which was a wonderful place for a leisurely breakfast and an afternoon of drinking before a dinner that was fit for a moron horde.

Oh, and Rutherford?  I was standing next Cathy at the gun range today.

You do not want to get on her bad side.

Ever.

She has the nicest .45, and she definitely knows how to use it.  I’ll post the pic of her target when I get home.

NOW! NEW AND IMPROVED!  WITH THAT SPECIAL CORDITE FLAVOR!

Ms. Cathy and the guy who shouldn't oughtta messed with her.

And here is my target.

Cathy was firing a Lady Kimber. I borrowed Dick’s .40 and ran a magazine through it. It felt good. Not too much kick, and it made big holes. Then I shot his Ruger .22 single action revolver. It took me a few times to get adjusted to it, but I kinda liked it.

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