Archive for April, 2012

Obama Exceeds Constitutional Authority

Posted by Troy on 30th April 2012 in Current Events, Political

It is the power of the Congress to control the finances.  This is commonly called the power of the purse strings and is a part of the checks and balances system the Founding Fathers put in place. 

When Palestine decided to bypass the United States peace process and apply for statehood directly to the UN, Congress decided to withhold the 192 million dollars they were going to give them in aid.  President Obama has decided to pay the money to Palestine regardless of Congress’ wishes.  His rationale for this is that this payment is important to the security of the United States.

Even if you were to agree with his logic, you cannot give the President (or any branch of government) an easy work around for the checks and balances.  What if Obama were to say that internet security is important to the security of the United States and takes full control of it?  What if they say that energy use is important to the security of the United States and forces everyone to live in 200 square foot apartments with seven foot ceilings to minimize energy use? 

One of my favorite quotes is by William Pitt, “Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human liberty; it is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.”  This quote inspired a lot of the material in 2084.

I am sick of how many times this President has exceeded his Constitutional authority.  No one seems to be willing to cry foul.  At least some people cried foul when Bush exceeded his authority.  Where are these whistle blowers now?  Or is it only about the D or R after their name that really matters?

Long Live the Constitution!

The Raven

Posted by Troy on 29th April 2012 in Entertainment

I have mixed feelings about The Raven.  There were a few holes in the plot, and I think the screenwriter acknowledged it at the end.  However, it was a fairly entertaining movie on the whole.  I wouldn’t rush out to see it, but I also wouldn’t warn people against watching it.  However, it is probably a better bargain if you wait to rent it or catch it at the value theater instead.

Pittsburgh Promotions

Posted by Troy on 29th April 2012 in Writing

I’m happy to announce that I have someone who is willing to promote my book for me in Pittsburgh, so hooray there.  Nice to know that I am spreading word around about my book.

Why does anyone support Obama

Posted by Troy on 27th April 2012 in Uncategorized

His approval rating is back up to 50%, and for the life of me, I cannot understand why.  He has accomplished little or none of his campaign promises.  He has sunk us into unimaginable debt.  He neglects real duties and assumes extra Constitutional powers that are not given to him by Executive Orders.  He sells out our national sovereignty.  He acts more like a Comedian in Chief than a Commander in Chief.  He’s been on vacation and on tour for the vast part of his first term.  Nearly every piece of legislation he has signed into law eats up more of our Constitutional rights.  He is destroying the value of our money.  He is dividing us along sex, race, age, status, and location–playing us against each other at every turn.  The economy is still in the tank.  There is nothing that is better now than it was three years ago.  So I just want to know why.

Is it the image?  Do you like having a younger President?  A hipper President?  A darker-skinned President?  Is it idelogical?  Does it not matter the effects of his policies as long as they are in line with the ideology?  It’s it because we’re told that he’s just likable?  Is it because you don’t like the Republicans?  If so, specifically, what is so God-awful that you would be willing to subject us to 4 more years of Obama’s rule?  Bear in mind, if you don’t approve of his destruction of the Constitution, he will be completely unfettered in his second term.

Just tell me why.  I don’t understand.  I just do not understand.  I could understand if you disapproved of him but wanted to vote for him over Romney.  That’s just the old “lesser of two evils” thing, but why, how on Earth, can you approve of his job performance?  What has he done?  Which of his policies do you actually approve of?  You can’t support someone on just sound bites, can you?

Long Live the Constitution.

Marine Gary Stein dismissed over Obama Comments

Posted by Troy on 26th April 2012 in Current Events

Needless to say, this falls under stupid things to say.  However, his comments are 100% correct.  The enlistment oath is as follows:

“I, XXXXXXXXXX, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of the Military Justice.  So Help me God.”

Any order that the President gives which goes against the Constitution would be void under this oath.  I should imagine that Gary Stein is concerned about the declaration of martial law.  Also, every serviceman has the right to deny an order if he believes it is an illegal order.  If an officer tells the soldier to shoot unarmed women and children, the serviceman has the right not to comply with that order.  He may be court marshaled for it, and the court would decide if the serviceman was justified in that decision.

Ergo, when Gary Stein says he will not obey all orders, he has a very defensible position.  That being said, don’t insult your boss on Facebook.  It’s not a wise move.

Long Live the Constitution!

Metta World Peace Suspended for seven games

Posted by Troy on 24th April 2012 in Current Events

Whoop de doo!  Seven games, wow.

His attack on a fellow player was vicious and intentional.  You can see the arc of his arm swing change from a down movement to an up, out, and back.  It was intentional.  He saw an opportunity to take someone out, and he took the shot.  Such a mentality should not be in the NBA.  There are hundreds of college students graduating that would love to take his spot.  He should be kicked out of the NBA for good.  Attacking anyone in the game should not be tolerated.

Before he was Metta World Peace, he was known as Ron Artest.  He was the player that rushed into the stands and attacked the fans.  That is the cardinal sin.  If you are a team owner, that is something that should never be allowed.  That was when the league should have kicked him out.  Fans are the life blood of any sports team.  You hire security to deal with rowdy fans throwing drinks.  Unless a fan comes out of the stands and physically attacks a player, there is no excuse for a player to ever hit a fan.  Even then, I’d give a player a bonus if they refrained from attacking until security grabbed the attacker.

Regardless of ability, we need to start holding people to a higher standard.  Nietzsche’s superman does not exist, and if they did, they definitely would not be wearing any sort of jersey.

Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Posted by Troy on 23rd April 2012 in Current Events

Romney needs to backtrack on his position on immigration because it is stupid.  If someone is here illegally, they are not going to self-deport and go to the back of the line.  It is unreasonable to think that his solution is going to work.  Here is my comprehensive plan:

1 – We start a immigrant worker program.  In this program, the employer will pay the employer portion of Social Security and Medicare, and the employee will have no right to either benefit.  A flat 15% will be withheld on employees.  Employers will also be required to use e-verify.

2 – A person that is already over here can stay assuming they a) come forward and register with full bio-metrics, b) they have no criminal charges, and c) they can find 5 US citizens to sponsor them and link their fortunes to them.  Should the sponsored person be arrested for a felony, the sponsor will owe a small fine ($1,000).  If they can’t find 5 people to speak up for them, we don’t need them here.  Anyone failing to register after one year will lose this protection and will be deported if they are caught.  They can also never become permanent residents or citizens.

3 – Anyone qualifying under number 2 will only attain permanent residency.  They can never become a citizen.  They didn’t respect the law by coming over the correct way.  They will not get the privileges that come with citizenship.  If they want to become a citizen, then they will have to self-deport and come back the correct way.

4 – It costs, on average, $15,000 for a person to immigrate legally.  Anyone qualifying under number 2 will have a fine levied against them of $50,000, to be collected via taxes.  This tax will be limited to 10% of their AGI per year.  Their earnings will have this bonus withholding on their W-2, and they will only be allowed to have incomes that are reported to the IRS either by W-2 or 1099.  Any employer found paying such employee “under the table” will become liable for the outstanding balance on their fine.

I believe that this is a comprehensive immigration reform.  It’s not a path to citizenship.  It’s a path of redemption, sacrifice, and legitimacy.

Long Live the Constitution!

Important to Someone

Posted by Troy on 22nd April 2012 in Human Nature

We’ve all heard the story about “Who will take the son?”, the story about a man winning a huge art collection for buying the uncoveted portrait of the owner’s son. 

I think that it’s important to realize that everything is important to someone.  You may see a painting that looks out of place in a fine art collection.  It could be that it was painted by the owner’s dead wife and is the most important painting he has.  You may insult an ugly dessert, and find out that the host made it themselves and was quite proud of it until you insulted it.

A simple moral to this story is that you should never say anything negative.  As your mother told you, if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.  This wise advice, but my moral goes somewhat deeper.  What I advocate is that you learn to see that there is more to this world than you know.  What you may dismiss may be very important to someone.  I urge you to take things and appreciate them for what they are and celebrate that which is good in them and forgive that which is bad, for it may be important to someone.

In truth, the same could be said about people.

New Constitutional Amendment Denies Bill of Rights

Posted by Troy on 21st April 2012 in Current Events, Political

On the heels of the Citizens United case, the Democrats are now pushing an Amendment to the Constitution that will deny that corporations (profit or otherwise) have any rights under the Constitution (but Unions, I’m sure, are still cool).  That is to say, that only individuals have rights.

First of all, I would like to point out that the Democrats likely have an issue with Citizen’s United SOLELY due to the fact that corporations tend to favor Republicans.  I have a feeling, if it was the other way around, they would be defending the rights of corporations.

Second, corporations are made up of individuals.  They hire individuals.  They sell goods and services to individuals.  They should have every right in the world to defend their interest as long as they are not giving out false information.  If they are found giving out false information, they should be liable the same as any individual.  Here’s a question for ya: a demagogue launches into a tirade about how a factory is polluting the air and the water and that you should elect them so they can force the factory out of town.  Shouldn’t the corporation have the right to buy ads that show that the candidate has ties to a competing company?  Shouldn’t they be able to defend their interest and point out how the local economy depends upon this factory?  If not, then the demagogue wins, boots out the factory, and the town dies as the economy evaporates.

Third, corporations clearly have rights.  Under the proposed Amendment, corporations would have no rights before the law, to searches and seizures, or to speech.  What about the right to gather peacefully?  We could go on an on.  Clearly corporations have rights.

Fourth, this Amendment could set up a police state scenario.  Since news organizations are owned by corporations, a strict reading of the law would give the government a complete right to censure the news.  This is particularly concerning since the First Amendment states that Congress should make no law abridging the freedom of speech or of the press.

Finally, I would like to point out that I do actually commend the Democrats for actually following Congressional law and trying to get what they want by the Amendment process.  They usually just ignore the Constitution and do it anyway.

The cure is worse than the disease in this case.  The current laws are enough to deal with the situation.  What is the liability for libel which causes someone to lose a Presidential election?  It’s huge.  You have the wages lost during the Presidency, book deals, speaking engagements, and the increased earnings after the job.  A few libel suits of this nature would ruin all but the most massive corporations.

Long Live the Constitution!

I blame the churches, honestly

Posted by Troy on 20th April 2012 in Current Events

The Ryan budget is coming under fire for “abandoning” the sick and the poor to the wolves.  I considered this.  Why should the government take care of the sick and poor?  Is that a natural function of government?  I don’t believe it is.  This all stems from Lyndon Johnson’s idea that we are the richest country in the world and can afford to take care of everyone.  He wasn’t clear if he meant everyone in the world.  There are several liberals in the government that believe so, and that is why we have talk about the global children’s rights treaty and cap and trade legislation. 

So that leads to the question, who used to take care of this?  Well, the answer is communities and churches.  That leads me to ask, well, where are they?  They’re still around…even if attendance is down.  So, why is it that they are not taking care of the sick and the poor?  I believe that this is a direct result of the welfare state that was created under President Johnson.  When he did so, he shifted the burden of charity from the churches to the government.  While I do realize that churches still help out members of their congregation, I also have to point out that they are involved with frivolous pursuits.  I do not believe that churches in the past spent nearly as much on stained glass windows and mission trips.  While I understand that spreading the Word is one of the Churches number one priorities, I believe that feeding the poor should be their top priority.  Also, I believe that the welfare state has robbed us of our inter-dependence.  People that may have once formed strong ties with the community and the church no longer do so.  It used to be that the community and churches were the safety net.  Now they are the social clubs. 

I respect the church.  I believe that religion and spirituality are of the uptmost importance to the human race.  I do not advocate withholding your tithe.  Instead, I advocate making sure that your donations go to where it is most needed.  Jesus would never care about the color of the windows in the building that people go to worship him.  Instead, he would care about how those people cared for those really in need.  Churches need to remember, while a pretty building may make their congregation bigger, charity makes it richer.