Saturday, June 20, 2015

Where I Stand On America, The Civil War...And Its' Symbols

...with regards to the Civil War, these are the ones we should be honoring; these people and the symbology of those brave souls who fought to preserve this sacred Union of states....

...not those who fought to tear it apart and rip it asunder.
SOUTH CAROLINA, TAKE THE CONFEDERATE FLAG DOWN!


...and God bless America!

Random Thought, 20 June 2015

To those who believe that the Confederate battle flag is a symbol of heritage, not hate...to those who believe the South was right to secede back in 1860-1861....all I can say is this:
...that is all.

Friday, June 19, 2015

The Confederacy Is Not Our Heritage

99 times out of 100 times, I wouldn't give the deluded idiots that inhabit the progressive site Daily Kos the frickin' time of day...but goddamn if DK writer Mark Sumner isn't right in that 1 out of 100 occasion when he writes that those who honor the Confederacy in all its' forms are not honoring anything but the actions of those who tried to break the United States of America apart back in the 1860's...quoting in full:
I grew up in Kentucky barely 30 miles from the Jefferson Davis Monument. I've strolled the cemeteries full of time-rounded headstones and walked the battlefields where uniform buttons and the pale oxidized lumps of Minie balls still peek from the ground after a hard rain. I've watched reenactors run screaming over hills and heard the gut-punch thump of a period canon fired in memorial at sunset.
But the Confederacy is not my heritage. It's not anyone's heritage. The Confederacy is our shame. In the whole of the Confederacy, there is not one thing to be proud of. Not the men. Not their actions. Certainly not the ideals.
You'll see people today proclaiming that the Confederacy was launched over an issue of "state's rights," or on some esoteric principle. No. That idea didn't even appear until decades after the hot portion of the Civil War turned into the cooler years that have followed. You'll also see it expressed simply that the war was fought for slavery. But that's not quite right, either.
The Confederacy was launched not on a platform of slavery, but on a foundation of racism. That it maintained slavery as an institution was a feature. That it upheld racism was the design. Read the words of Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens, speaking at the Athenaeum in Savannah, Georgia:
The new Constitution has put at rest forever all the agitating questions relating to our peculiar institutions—African slavery as it exists among us—the proper status of the negro in our form of civilization. This was the immediate cause of the late rupture and present revolution. Jefferson, in his forecast, had anticipated this, as the "rock upon which the old Union would split." He was right. What was conjecture with him, is now a realized fact. But whether he fully comprehended the great truth upon which that rock stood and stands, may be doubted. The prevailing ideas entertained by him and most of the leading statesmen at the time of the formation of the old Constitution were, that the enslavement of the African was in violation of the laws of nature; that it was wrong in principle, socially, morally and politically. It was an evil they knew not well how to deal with; but the general opinion of the men of that day was, that, somehow or other, in the order of Providence, the institution would be evanescent and pass away. ... Those ideas, however, were fundamentally wrong. They rested upon the assumption of the equality of races. This was an error. It was a sandy foundation, and the idea of a Government built upon it—when the "storm came and the wind blew, it fell."
Our new Government is founded upon exactly the opposite ideas; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and moral condition.
. . . look with confidence to the ultimate universal acknowledgement of the truths upon which our system rests? It is the first government ever instituted upon the principles in strict conformity to nature, and the ordination of Providence, in furnishing the materials of human society. Many governments have been founded upon the principle of the subordination and serfdom of certain classes of the same race; such were and are in violation of the laws of nature. Our system commits no such violation of nature's laws.
Head below the fold for just a reminder of what that all means. Read that again.
• The Founding Fathers accepted slavery into the Union, but believed it was both evil and on its way out.
• The Confederacy was founded on the idea that "all men are created equal" is "fundamentally wrong."
• The Confederacy has its "cornerstone" entirely on racial inequality.
• The Confederacy was "founded upon exactly the opposite ideas" of the United States.
This isn't the voice of some latter-day apologist who dreamed up noble phrases to paint over events of the time. This is the reality. This is what the men who carried out this treason believed. This is what the men who carried out this treason said. This is what the men who carried out this treason acted to achieve.
There is, in the whole Confederate enterprise, not one admirable notion. Is it part of our history? Yes, it is, to our everlasting shame. It's a part of our history the same way that the apartheid state is a part of South African history. It's a part of our history the same way that the Nazi Reich is a part of German history. It's a part of our history that should embarrass us.
It's the part of our history in which traitors who not only didn't believe in the American union, but also didn't believe in the basic ideals of America, formed a state whose core was nothing less than pure racism.
It should be no more acceptable to wave a Confederate flag in the United States than it is to fly a swastika. No more acceptable to proclaim yourself sympathetic to the Confederate cause than to proclaim yourself a supporter of ISIS. There is no moral difference. None. These are the banners of the enemies of our nation and of our ideals—enemies whose existence is based on inequality and subjugation.
Romanticizing these causes isn't admirable, it's an illness. (Daily Kos)
Screw illness; its' treason in its' worst form...and that goes from those who led Confederate forces in battle all the way down to the individual soldier; if America could do anything in the wake of the Charleston shooting, we could start by finally - finally - addressing this scourge on the American body politic.

To those who think they're honoring "heritage"....
...these above are the heroes of the Civil War. Those who fought and died to preserve the Union, not rip it asunder. Maybe, just maybe, we'll get around to holding the Confederate battle flag in the same vein that we do the Nazi Swastika..as an unmitigated symbol of evil on this earth.

Founder's Quote, 19 June 2015

Equal laws protecting equal rights; the best guarantee of loyalty and love of country. - James Madison, letter to Jacob de la Motta — 1820

Thursday, June 18, 2015

SCOTUS Releases Raft Of Decisions

As expected, the Supreme Court released a bunch of decisions Thursday morning as they continue to clear the docket of 2014 cases...
  • Brumfield v. Cain (13-1433): In this case, the Supreme Court vacated a Louisiana state death sentence, holding that Brumfield has satisfied the requirements of §2254(d) prohibiting states from executing individuals deemed mentally retarded/deficient
  • Ohio v. Clark (13-1352): In this case, the Court overturned an Ohio Supreme Court ruling in regards to the Constitution's Confrontation Clause (i.e. the right of an individual to confront their accusers in court) and whether someone reporting incidents of child abuse to state authorities is considered a law enforcement officer for purposes of that clause; the decision held that introducing said statements doesn't violate the Confrontation Clause
  • Davis v. Ayala (13-1428): In this case, the Court reversed a 9th Circuit ruling, stating that a California state court's refusal to consider a defendant's Batson challenge did not rise to the level of a constitutional challenge
  • Walker v. Texas Sons of Confederate Veterans (14-144): In this decision, the Court held that Texas's specialty license plate design constitutes government speech, and thus Texas was entitled to refuse to issue plates featuring the proposed Confederate Veterans' design; in essence, the Court ruled that when government speaks (in this case, through the issuance of license plates), it is not barred by the 1st Amdt.'s Free Speech Clause from determining the content of what it says
  • McFadden v. United States (14-378): In this case, the Court vacated a 4th Circuit ruling, declaring that when a controlled substance is an analogue, the statute requires the government to establish that the defendant knew he was dealing with a substance regulated under the Controlled Substances Act or Analogue Act; in other words, the government must show that the defendant consciously knew the substance in question was illegal for purposes of said laws
  • Reed v. Town of Gilbert, Az. (13-502): In this decision, the Court reversed a 9th Circuit ruling, declaring that (the town's) sign code's provisions are content-based regulations of speech that do not survive strict scrutiny; in other words, the town's sign code provision unfairly restricted content in violation of the 1st Amendment
More decisions are expected next week on Monday and, more than likely, on Thursday as well as the Court continues whittling away its' 2014 docket...

9 Dead In Mass Shooting At Historic Charleston Church

...there are simply no words here to express the grief that must be going through most all of us today over the savagery that took place overnight in Charleston....
CHARLESTON, S.C. — Dylann Roof, who police say opened fire and killed nine people during a prayer service at a historic African American church here, has been arrested.
Roof, a 21-year-old from Eastover, S.C., was taken into custody Thursday morning, not long after law enforcement officials identified him as the sole suspect in the Wednesday-night massacre, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said at a news briefing.
Charleston Police Chief Greg Mullen said Roof was arrested during a traffic stop in Shelby, N.C., just after 11 a.m. Mullen said Roof “was cooperative with the officer who stopped him” in Shelby, about 250 miles from Charleston.
“In America, you know, we don’t let bad people like this get away with these dastardly deeds,” Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. (D) said at the briefing. The longtime mayor said Roof — “an awful person” — “is now in custody, where he will always remain.”
Six female and three male victims were killed and at least one other person was injured in Wednesday’s attack, which began about an hour after the assailant entered the church and observed the service, authorities said. “We believe this is a hate crime; that is how we are investigating it,” Mullen said.
The U.S. Justice Department has said it is investigating the attack at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church as a hate crime.
“We woke up today and the heart and soul of South Carolina was broken,” Gov. Nikki Haley said after Roof’s capture. She added: “The healing process will start.” (Washington Post)
 ....thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to the victims, their families and to the city of Charleston...

Founder's Quote, 18 June 2015

Children should be educated and instructed in the principles of freedom. - John Adams, Defense of the Constitutions — 1787

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Why Making Energy From Dirt Might Save The World

Quoting: In his talk, Rusty discusses the availability of energy as the critical ingredient for raising the standard of living around the world, providing a crash course in understanding how Thorium, found in the dirt we walk on every day, might be humanity’s final energy solution.

From an early age, Rusty Towell was curious about how things worked. That curiosity led him to earn a degree in Engineering Physics, serve in the U.S. Navy as an instructor at the Naval Nuclear Power School, return to school for a Ph.D. in Nuclear Physics, and work for over 25 years with “atom smashers” at national laboratories around the country.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

For all the talk of using renewable sources of energy (wind power, solar power, etc.) as the end-all/be-all of future energy needs, wouldn't it be interesting if a 4-decades old nuclear technology - thorium molten-salt reactors - might end up being a potential energy savior...wouldn't that be a surprise?

Seriously, folks...the technology's there; why shouldn't we embrace it?

Seared Music: Thin Lizzy - "Jailbreak"

..."Jailbreak"...an apt description for the feeling that the four third-placed teams in this year's Women's World Cup must be feeling at making it into the Knockout Stage....

You Know, There Are Times Where I'm Glad I'm Not In School Anymore...

...cause' if I had one of these things - and I'm pretty sure I did back then - I'd be suspended from school for supposedly showing a gun-like object. As with most things these days, the average person sees that above and doesn't think anything weird...the Deluded Left sees a gun. Something wrong with that?

A Symbol Of America's Fundamental Transformation

Gay Patriot hits it right on the head....
If you had to pick a single person to epitomize Barack Obama’s “fundamental transformation” of the USA, you could not do better than Caitlyn Jenner, who once achieved feats that brought the admiration of the entire world, but has chosen to become an emasculated, celebrity-chasing joke. But Rachel Dolezal (a.k.a ‘Sideshow Flozell’) comes a pretty damn close second.(Gay Patriot)

...because really, why bother ourselves with concerns that the Russians & Chines are hacking state secrets or that the whole world is laughing at our military or that the only thing keeping our economy running is massive government when we can fixate ourselves on, (a)a white woman from Spokane who thinks she's black and (b)some dude who was an Olympian who now thinks he's a woman...

Founder's Quote, 17 June 2015

The known propensity of a democracy is to licentiousness which the ambitious call, and ignorant believe to be liberty. - Fisher Ames, speech in the Massachusetts Ratifying Convention — 1788

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Seared Music: Blondie - "Heart Of Glass"

*reads song title* ....yeah, that could easily describe progressives; pierce them with shards of truth and the results can be very, very interesting... *adds deadpan* ....oh, yeah...why can't we have music like this nowadays?

Should America Be The World's Policeman?

Quoting Prager University: Should America be the world's policeman? Does the world even need a policeman? Or would humanity be better off if America weren't the dominant military superpower? Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and foreign affairs expert Bret Stephens weighs in.

Ever since the end of World War II, this has been a hotly-contested question...unfortunately, whether we like it or not, the only country that can really play the role of global policeman is the United States, which means that whenever we retreat from the world, evil does have a tendency to advance, whether we care to admit it or not. 

There are going to be times where the United States must play the global policeman, whether we like it or not...the sooner we acknowledge and embrace this, the idea of "Pax Americana", the better off the world will be in the long run.

Founder's Quote, 16 June 2015

We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately. - Benjamin Franklin, at the signing of the Declaration of Independence — 1776

Monday, June 15, 2015

Seared Music: Dead Kennedys - "Night Of The Living Rednecks"

....this could also be an allegory on how to deal with progressives as well...

Another Set Of SCOTUS Decisions

For the past month, Court Kremlinologists have been watching the decisions come down week-by-week, given some of the high-interest issues the Court has heard over the past year...well, they issued a few more decisions:
  • Reyes Mata v. Lynch (14-185): In this decision, the Court reversed a 5th Circuit immigration ruling, stating that the Fifth Circuit erred in declining to take jurisdiction over Mata's appeal. A court of appeals has jurisdiction to review the Board of Immigration Appeals' rejection for an alien's motion to reopen.
  • Baker Botts, L.L.P. v. ASARCO, L.L.C. (14-103): In this case, the Court ruled that bankruptcy courts do not have to award fees to attorneys handling defenses of fee applications
  • Kerry v. Din (13-1402): In this case, the Court ruled that the State Department did not deprive an individual of due process rights in refusing a visa to the woman's husband
As expected, most of the big-ticket opinions (those involving same-sex marriage, Obamacare subsidies, the death penalty, housing disparity, etc.) have yet to be issued and given the time of year, its' expected that the Court will begin issuing decisions on Mondays & Thursdays, possibly beginning this week.

Founder's Quote, 15 June 2015

I have not yet begun to fight! - John Paul Jones, response to enemy demand to surrender — 1779