The Personal Website of Mark W. Dawson

Containing His Articles, Observations, Thoughts, Meanderings,
and some would say Wisdom (and some would say not).

Chirps (Some Would Say Rants)

Paragraph sized, succinct, and pithy comments on a subject that have piqued my interest or curiosity,
or my ire or indignation, as well as announcements of new or updated Articles that I have written.

Click to proceed to my latest Chirp.
Click  to review my Chirps on the Coronavirus Pandemic.
Until the 2020 Elections are over I am highlighting one of my articles:
The Real Issues of the 2020 Election
as I believe that it is important for Americans to consider these issues before they cast their votes.

It’s Complicated

How often have we heard someone state “It’s Complicated” when responding in a political debate? Yes, it can be complicated when dealing with the cause and effect of an issue. But, often, the core issue of the debate is not complicated. It is the core issues that I try to address in these Chirps. When you strip away the Deflections and the “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors” it is often not that complicated. I point out that many who argue a political issue resort to Deflections, Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors as a tactic to obscuring people's understanding, leaving them baffled or bewildered and susceptible to accepting their conclusions. It is most often done by inserting oblique facts, nonsequiturs, exceptions to the rule, and the perfect vs. the practical. You should always go to the core issue of the argument and examine its meaning. When engaging in a debate blow away the Deflections, Obfuscations, Smoke, and Mirrors and get to the core issue. Determine the core issue, the facts and truths of the issue, then debate the cause and effect and the actions to be taken.

Stating The Obvious and Common Sense

Many would say that these Chirps are “stating the obvious” or just “common sense”. Unfortunately, in today's society, the obvious has become obscured and common sense is not so common. When I speak of common sense I do so as stated in my “Common Sense” observation which I would encourage you to read. The obvious is often (deliberately) obscured in order to achieve a political goal through the means of “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors” as I stated in another observation which I would also encourage you to read. Therefore, I think that I need to Chirp by “stating the obvious” and utilizing “common sense”.

Arguing from Ignorance

When I speak of ignorance it is not in a pejorative sense. I mean a lack of knowledge, or incomplete knowledge, or just plain incorrect knowledge. When I speak of argumentation, I mean the logical structure of an argument: a statement or observation, the premises, and the conclusion. This includes the deductive or inductive reasoning of the argument. I also include the identification of logical fallacies and cognitive biases incorporated into the argument as outlined in my “Reasoning” section of my “Dialog and Debate” observation. There are many different ways that an argument can be improper. Statements or observation can be incorrect or misleading, premises can be incorrect or missing, and consequently, the conclusion would be wrong. These and many other things may make the conclusion of an argument wrong. Sometimes, even in the statements, observations, or premises are incorrect the conclusion may be right. This is usually due to blind luck and falls under the category that “a stuck clock is right twice a day”. You should keep this in mind when reviewing an argument, or when you are stating an argument. The Chirps on this web page are too short for a substantive argument. When I think it necessary to elaborate, I will direct you to an article that has a better argument.

Criticism vs. Critique

The only acceptable method of public discourse is disagreement - to be of different opinions. If you are in disagreement with someone you should be cognizant that people of good character can and often disagree with each other. The method of their disagreement is very important to achieve civil discourse. There are two ways you can disagree with someone; by criticizing their opinions or beliefs or critiquing their opinions or beliefs.

  • Criticism - Disapproval expressed by pointing out faults or shortcomings.
  • Critique - A serious examination and judgment of something.

Most people, and most commentators have forgotten the difference between Criticism and Critique. This has led to the hyper-partisanship in today's society. In a civil society critiquing a viewpoint or policy position should be encouraged. This will often allow for a fuller consideration of the issues, and perhaps a better viewpoint or policy position without invoking hyper-partisanship. We can expect that partisanship will often occur, as people of good character can and often disagree with each other. Criticizing a viewpoint or policy position will often lead to hostility, rancor, and enmity, which results in the breakdown of civil discourse and hyper-partisanship. It is fine to criticize someone for their bad or destructive behavior, but it is best to critique them for their opinions or words. We would all do better if we remember to critique someone, rather than criticize someone.

My Approach

I have often said that English is my second language, while thinking is my first language. Those that know me, and my writing, know that my second language (English) can be very poor in spelling, grammar, malapropisms, and phraseology (thank God for computer spell checkers, thesaurus, and grammar checks), and I struggle to write anything. I am a very organized and logical person, and I attempt to keep my writing organized and logical. I attempt to write clearly, concisely, completely, confidently, and understandably. As such, I hope that these articles are readable to all with a high school education.

In writing these Articles and Chirps I have attempted to assure that the information I present is factual and accurate. I, therefore, expend time and effort in researching to obtain the facts and achieve accuracy. The process of writing for me is an intellectual, emotional, and physical strain. I have, therefore, written a short article “The Intellectual and Emotional Strains of Writing” that explains my research efforts, and the intellectual, emotional, and physical strains of writing these Articles and Chirps.

As regards to my debating these issues, I would direct you to my Chip “Form Over Substance” as to my reluctance to engage in debate on these subjects. Essentially, I  believe that I am a poor debater. It is for this reason that I often do not engage in debates. I do, however, engage in discussions in which both sides have ample time to challenge the facts, statistics, and reasoning of their arguments to effectually explain their arguments.

Terminology

Throughout these Chirps I often utilize terms that I believe that should be defined and elucidated. The following is a brief list of the terms I most often utilize:

Liberals/Progressives

A term utilized to define the political spectrum to the left of center. This political spectrum is; Leftists, Progressives, Liberals, Centrists, Conservative, and Far-Right (including Reactionaries and the Alt-Right).

Mainstream Cultural Media (MCM)

MCM is those Academia, actors and actresses, celebrities, fine artists, musicians, poets and writers, producers, directors, and scriptwriters, sportsmen and sportswomen, etc. that are overwhelmingly of a liberal/progressive disposition, along with their mainstream media counterparts. I believe that it is time to provide a label for the personages who habituate in this Liberal/Progressive agenda.

Mainstream Media (MSM)

MSM is a term and abbreviation used to refer collectively to the various large mass news media that influence many people, and both reflect and shape prevailing currents of thought. The term is used to contrast with alternative media which may contain content with more dissenting thought at variance with the prevailing views of mainstream sources.

Political Correctness (PC)

PC is a term that originally meant the avoidance of expressions or actions that can be perceived to exclude or marginalize or insult people who are socially disadvantaged or discriminated against. However, PC has devolved into a term that is utilized to silence anyone who disagrees with the Liberal/Progressive agenda. PC now means that you cannot do or say anything that a Liberal/Progressives doesn't want to see or hear. It has become a term that excludes people rather than its original intent to include all people.

Cancel Culture

Those reprehensible actions taken by some people to damage a person, hurt their families, and ruin the finances of those that they disagree with. Almost exclusively done by Progressive and Leftists, these actions vary between impugning the honor and reputation of someone, the effectuation of loathing of a person, the actuating of fear of harm amongst those so targeted, and in some cases the actual physical harm or the destruction of property of their target(s). These are detestable actions done by despicable persons. You have every Free Speech right to admonish a person, but you have no right to destroy a person. These actions are also contrary to our “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”, and demonstrate the vacuity of the morals and ethics of those that practice Cancel Culture.

Comments, Concerns, Critiques, or Suggestions

If you have any comments, concerns, critiques, or suggestions I can be reached at mwd@profitpages.com. I will review reasoned and intellectual correspondence (Critiques not Criticisms), and it is possible that I can change my mind, or at least update the contents of these Chirps. This is why these articles are dated. Whenever I make a change to these articles they will be re-dated. So check back and see if any have been updated.

09/22/20 Abortion Articles

Abortion is one of the great social issues of our time since the Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade of 1973. It is also a question of the fundamental rights of the unborn child. Whether you call these rights Natural or Human Rights that are the same rights, as these terms are interchangeable. I have extracted and edited my Observation on “Social Issues” about Abortion, as this issue has again surfaced as a consequence of the nomination of a new Supreme Court Justice to fill the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. I have also written a new article that analogizes the debate over abortion to the debate over slavery. These articles are:

09/20/20 The Politics of an RBG Successor

As with all things hyperpolitical in today’s society, no sooner than RGB passed away that the questions of the appropriateness of President Trump making a nomination to the Supreme Court to fill her seat has arisen. My Chirp on, “09/19/20 RIP RBG” has answered this question. However, the questions about how to achieve this have also arisen. The usual battle lines have been drawn with the Democrats opposed to a nomination while the Republicans desire a nomination. The political issues regarding this nomination are the focus of this Chirp.

I believe that President Trump should make a nomination and that a counter proposed nomination from candidate Biden should also be made. This would allow for the American electorate to examine the types of Justices that the two candidates would nominate. An issue that the American electorate needs to consider before casting their votes. For those that would counter that this politicizes the Supreme Court, I would respond that this politicization has already occurred, as can be demonstrated in the last few nominations to the Supreme Court and Appellate Judges. I would also argue that this politicization is a result of the outsized role of the Supreme Court in our society that has been occurring for more than half a century in America. The shifting of responsibility for deciding questions of laws, rules, and regulations, and social policy to the Judiciary has resulted in the politicization of the unelected and undemocratic Judiciary when it properly belongs to the Legislative and Executive branches of government subject to the will of the people through elections.

I, however, do not believe that the Senate should vote on President Trump’s nominee until after the election. This would allow the Senate to ascertain the will of the people regarding this issue. This would also allow the American electorate to focus on the Senate candidates to ascertain their positions on Supreme Court nominations, an important consideration when voting for a Senate candidate. Those Senate candidates that do not express their opinions on these nominations are hiding their intentions for political gain, rather than expressing what they think is the proper role of the Judiciary in America.

By placing this issue before the American electorate, the Senate can proceed on the vote for the nominee with the sense of the American electorate. The American people also need to decide on the proper role of the Judiciary in America as we go forward. By placing this issue before the American electorate, the American people can have a voice of how we wish to define the role of the Judiciary in America. This is how it should be in a democratic republic form of government that is America.

09/19/20 RIP RBG

Ruth Bader Ginsberg (RBG) had a long and illustrious career in the law. More importantly, she was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother to her family. It is for this that we should all mournful upon her death, as our familial relations should be the most important aspect of our lives. In this, I extend my sincere condolences to her family.

As to her law career, it is a shining example of what can be achieved by all Americans when they apply themselves. From humble beginnings, sexual discrimination, and possible anti-Semitism, she rose to the pinnacle of her profession. She was a tireless fighter for equality between the sexes and her interpretation of the United States Constitution. While I disagree with her interpretation of the United States Constitution, I agreed with her that the sexes should have an equal opportunity to succeed in their chosen goals and that anti-Semitism should never be tolerated.

With her death, the question of the appropriateness of President Trump making a nomination to the Supreme Court to fill her seat has arisen. In a National Review article, "History Is on the Side of Republicans Filling a Supreme Court Vacancy in 2020," By Dan McLaughlin, written before the death of RBG, Mr. McLaughlin examines the historical record of Presidential Supreme Court nominations and Senate confirmations in an election year. Those that wish to commentate upon this history need to review this article to ascertain the historical facts as he has written:

“History supports Republicans filling the seat. Doing so would not be in any way inconsistent with Senate Republicans’ holding open the seat vacated by Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016. The reason is simple, and was explained by Mitch McConnell at the time. Historically, throughout American history, when their party controls the Senate, presidents get to fill Supreme Court vacancies at any time — even in a presidential election year, even in a lame-duck session after the election, even after defeat. Historically, when the opposite party controls the Senate, the Senate gets to block Supreme Court nominees sent up in a presidential election year, and hold the seat open for the winner. Both of those precedents are settled by experience as old as the republic. Republicans should not create a brand-new precedent to deviate from them.”
-
Dan McLaughlin

As to those that would commentate on the laws and norms of Presidential Supreme Court nominations, I would again direct you to Mr. McLaughlin article:

“There are two types of rules in Washington: laws that allocate power, and norms that reflect how power has traditionally, historically been used. Laws that allocate power are paramount, and particularly dangerous to violate, but there is no such law at issue here. A president can always make a nomination for a Supreme Court vacancy, no matter how late in his term or how many times he has been turned down; the only thing in his way is the Senate.”
-
Dan McLaughlin

and

“Norms are crucially important. If parties cannot trust that the other side will abide by established norms of conduct, politics devolves rapidly into a blood sport that quickly loses the capacity to resolve disagreements peaceably within the system. Those norms are derived from tradition and history. So let’s look at the history.”
-
Dan McLaughlin

In his article, Mr. McLaughlin looks at the history of Presidential Supreme Court nominations and Senate confirmations in an election year and concludes the historical record supports President Trump making a Supreme Court nomination and the Senate to consider such a nomination. To do otherwise is to ignore the Constitution and the traditional norms, with the result as stated in his conclusion:

“Republicans should not discard the rule of law or traditional norms to achieve their ends, but a Ginsburg vacancy, if one happens, would require Republicans only to act within the law and in accord with tradition. Woe to their future if they shrink from that.”
-
Dan McLaughlin

09/18/20 Bribery

The rise of Federal government authority over State and Local governments Rights has been accomplished in large part by the bribery of State and Local governments by the Federal government. This bribery is in the form of the Federal government providing grants or loans to or the direction on how to spend federal funds to State and Local governments. This bribery is also an infringement of State and Local governments' rights as I have Chirped on, “09/16/20 Popular Sovereignty and States Rights”.

For the Federal government to provide this funding means that they are collecting excess taxes from all Americans that are not needed to support the duties and responsibilities of the Federal government. If the State and Local governments are responsible for spending these tax monies, then it is the duty and responsibility of the State and Local Governments and not the Federal government's duties and responsibilities. This concept is known as ‘Federalism’, or the separation of duties and responsibilities between the Federal, State, and Local government. And Federalism is enshrined in the United States Constitution. By directing how State and Local governments spend these monies, they have blurred the lines of Federalism. They have also placed the State and Local governments under the direction of Federal bureaucrats unresponsive to the will of the people as expressed by elections within the State or Local governments. Federal bureaucrats that are only responsive to the will of Congress and the President of the United States, and bureaucrats that are sometimes only responsive to their own desires and predilections.

There is also the issue of shifting the tax burden from the taxpayers of one state to support State and Local government spending in another State. This is a form of ‘Taxation without Representation’, as the taxpayers of a State whose tax payments are being spent in another State or Local government do not get to vote for the politicians of the State or Local government who are spending their taxes. Many claim that this representation is indirect by the voting of Congressional members who represent the taxpayer’s interests of their State when allocating their tax monies to another State or Local government. This rational reminded me of our history in pre-Revolutionary America when the colonists were claiming that Parliament was taxing them without their being represented in Parliament. Parliament responded that they were being represented by the members of Parliament from the counties from which they immigrated. Therefore, they had an indirect representation in Parliament. However, this reasoning was not acceptable to the colonists, as a representation without being able to vote for the members of Parliament is illusionary, as the member of Parliament felt no need to be responsive to these non-voters. This lack of representation in Parliament was one of the driving reasons for the American Revolution, and the current reasoning of indirect Congressional members representation should also not be acceptable.

As to those who would respond that the Federal monies are needed by State and Local governments to provide essential services for their constituents, I would respond that if the Federal government stopped spending and collecting taxes on non-enumerated powers and non-essential services, there would be more money in the taxpayers’ pocket. More money that the State and Local governments could tax to provide these essential services to their citizens. There would also be more control by the citizens on how these tax monies are spent within their State and Local governments. This is how Federalism is supposed to work.

As a result of this Federal bribery of the State and Local Governments, the people are more subservient to Federal politicians and Federal bureaucrats, and not to the will of the people as expressed through the elections of State and Local government officials. This is not a democracy but an oligarchy.

09/17/20 Civil Rights

Civil Rights are those Laws passed by Congress and signed by the President that are necessary to protect our Human and Constitutional Rights. All such civil rights need to be passed and implemented within the framework of the Constitution. This means that the Congress of the United States would pass a law, and then be signed by the President of the United States, before being implemented. This also means that the judiciary cannot create a civil right. The judiciary should be limited to reviewing the civil rights laws, to assure they do not conflict with our constitutional and/or human rights. As such, Civil Rights sit at the bottom of the hierarchy of our Rights of Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights, as I have written in my article, “A Hierarchy of Rights”.

Many of these Civil Rights laws are for the protection of non-discrimination based on race, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, veteran status, disability, military service, political affiliation, or other protected status. However, a Civil Right cannot be created that is not a Human or Constitutional Right, for to do so is to extend the Constitution beyond its bounds. An extension that infringes upon the prerogative of the self-governance of the people and the States as stated in the Ninth and Tenth Amendments of the Constitution, and as I have Chirped on, “09/16/20 Popular Sovereignty and States Rights”.

Unfortunately, today many people and politicians are making claims of Civil Rights to pass legislation that is beyond our Human and Constitutional Rights. They often do this by claiming a Human Right that has not pre-existed or acknowledged and may even be fallacious, and which is often done for the advancement of their political agendas. They do this by utilizing the techniques of “Torturous and Convoluted Reasoning” and “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors” to justify these Civil Rights laws. They often cloak these laws with noble and lofty phrases, but such noble and lofty phrases often cloak the infringement of other people’s actual Human and Constitutional Rights, for a fallacious Civil Right often requires the limitation of the actual Human and Constitutional Rights of the people and the States. And you cannot infringe upon one person’s Human and Constitutional Rights without infringing upon all peoples Human and Constitutional Rights.

Therefore, we all need to be careful when a politician or activist makes claims of a Civil Right. We need to be careful to ascertain if it is indeed an actual Civil Right or merely a cloak to achieve a political goal. The means needed to achieve these civil rights are a good indication of the actuality of the Civil Rights, as the implementation of a Civil Rights that requires the violation of another’s Human or Constitutional Rights than it is not an actual Civil Rights.

09/16/20 Popular Sovereignty and States Rights

Popular Sovereignty and States Rights are terms from American history that have a negative connotation, and deservedly so. They were terms that were used to trample the Human and Constitutional rights of many Americans, most especially black slaves. These terms were also utilized for the justification of slavery in America through the Civil War, and until the 13th amendment to the Constitution put an end to slavery in America. These terms continued to be utilized after the Civil War for the purposes of discrimination and Jim Crow laws in American. Whenever Human or Constitutional Rights are violated, it is morally reprehensible and should not be tolerated under the law. Therefore, the terms of Popular Sovereignty and States Rights when utilized to trample the Human and Constitutional rights of Americans is morally reprehensible, and they should not be allowed under the law.

Consequently, these terms have become defined as negatives. However, there is a positive connotation of these terms. A positive connotation that when they are utilized not for discriminatory purposes but for the purposes of governance in America. These terms, when utilized positively, are defined in the 9th and 10th Amendments to the Constitution:

Amendment IX:

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

States Rights are defined as those powers not delegated to the Federal government reside within the State and Local government. Popular Sovereignty is the right of the States and Local governments to govern as they see fit within their jurisdictions, according to the will of the people within their jurisdiction. The caveat is that the State government, the Local government, and the people may not exercise any powers that infringe on the Human and Constitutional rights of any persons within their jurisdiction. When such infringement does not occur, then these terms have a positive connotation.

When Popular Sovereignty and States Rights are utilized positively, they represent the concepts of democracy. They represent the government of the people, for the people, and by the people. As such, it is important that we utilize these terms positively to express the rule of the people and the division of duties and responsibilities between the Federal, State, and Local governments. To not do so is to acquiesce to the authoritativeness of the Federal government in all aspects of the governance of society.

09/15/20 Not Welcome Here

Some State Governors and local Mayors have expressed that President Trump is not welcome within their jurisdictions. They justify these statements on the basis that President Trump is a disrupter and instigator of public unrest. However, this is belayed by the fact that those people involved in the mob actions of rioting, looting, and arson are not President Trump supporters, but are anarchists that oppose President Trump and his supporters. To insist that those persons involved in these rioting, looting, and arson should be brought to justice and that safety and security be restored is not to be a disrupter or instigator of public unrest.

To advocate that a politician is unwelcome is to try to restrict the freedom of speech, and the right of the people peaceably to assemble, of the politician and their supporters. It is an attempt to control the flow of information to the electorate and an attempt to stifle the enthusiasm for a candidate, which is an oblique way to suppress the voting for a candidate. This is undemocratic and contrary to the principles of American democracy of free and fair elections in which all Americans can express their opinions.

Those that are unwelcoming of a politician cloak themselves in moral righteousness and intellectual superiority, and that their policy positions are so morally right and intellectually superior that they need not consider any other policy positions. Indeed, they believe that any other policy position should not even be expressed in the public arena and that the American people are incapable of distinguishing fact from fiction. Those that reserve the determination of moral rightness or intellectual superiority to themselves or like-minded persons are themselves immoral, as they are intolerant of any moral convictions, intelligent reasoning, or policy positions that are contrary to their own.

And those politicians who put out the unwelcome mat are revealing that they wish to be rulers rather than leaders, as I have written in my article, "To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders".

For the next few weeks, I will be departing from my usual policy of keeping my Chirps pithy. I do so because I will be discussing the issues of the 2020 Presidential campaign, Issues that cannot be discussed pithily. These issues need more elaboration so that the American electorate can make intelligent and wise decisions about whom they wish to elect, and the future course for America.

09/13/20 Final Thoughts on the Elections of 2020

With the advent of early voting in the 2020 elections, I am ending my lengthy Chirps on election issues. I believe that all Americans should carefully consider these issues before they cast their votes. My Chirps on these issues are:

It is time to choose, and choose wisely, on those candidates that that espouse the future direction of America that the voter would like to see. I hope that these Chirps will give you food for thought and provide guidance as to whom to vote for in the 2020 elections.

09/12/20 A Blue America and A Red America

Throughout history, human societies have been structured into two classes; the ruling class and the bureaucrats who support them and a lower class that provides the labor to build the society. It is only in the last three centuries that a new class has arisen: The Middle-Class. A Middle-Class brought forth by Tradesmen and Industrialization, advances in Science and Technology, and the Political Enlightenment. This has resulted in a society that has three classes: An Upper-Class, a Middle-Class, and the Lower-Class, as I have written about in my new article, “The Classes of Society”.

As I have mentioned in my article, in the past few decades, the Upper-Class and Lower Class have politically aligned to form a Ruling/Bureaucratic and Lower-Class that controls political power in America. This is exhibited by the wealthiest and poorest counties in the United States that have been solidly voting for Democrats, while the Middle-Class counties have been swing-voting between the Democrats and Republicans depending upon the issues. This is a trend that has been increasing in recent times, and a trend that ultimately pits one group of Americans against another group of Americans, leading to more divisiveness in America. Pleas to ‘bring us together’ are often based on one side or the other acquiescing to the policy positions of the other side, rather than finding common ground which most can agree too. This common ground also does not resolve the issue of the role of government in society, a resolution that is necessary to formulated social policy in America.

Today, however, with the rise of President Trump’s Middle-Class populists Republican Party we may be witnessing another realignment of the political orientation of the Classes of American Society. A Democrat Party of the Upper-Class and Lower-Class that wish to retain their wealth and powers while providing the basic needs of the lower class, versus a new Republican Party of the lower Upper-Class, upper Lower-Class, and expanded support of the Middle-Class. A new Republican Party based upon persons that wish to create self-sufficiency and opportunity for all persons who desire to make something for themselves, versus a Democrat Party that relies on the dependency of the Lower-Class on government for their basic needs.

Much of the differences between the two parties are also due to an interpretation of the Constitution, as I have written in my article, “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution”. This interpretation is not of a Republican Party or a Democratic Party Constitution, but a Republic or a Democratic political theory of the Constitution. This interpretation leads to two different roles of government under the Constitution. Different roles of government that is exemplified by Federal vs. State/Local powers, a large government vs. a small government, an intrusive government vs. a noninterference government, expansive social policies vs. limited social policies, maximal taxation vs. minimal taxation, and majority rule vs. minorities rights. Although most Americans are not cognizant of these different interpretations, they are basing their policy positions and voting on the different governmental roles of these two interpretations.  We are a country in which many are desirous of a Democratic Constitution, while many others are desirous of a Republican Constitution. We have also seen a Democrat Party that wishes to rule, and a Republican Party that wishes to lead, as I have outlined in my article, "To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders", which is also a result of the two different Constitutional interpretations.

Rarely does governmental social policies directly impact the Democrat Upper-Class, as they can hire lawyers and accountants to evade the laws or regulations, or they have special interest carve-outs in the laws or regulations. They also often live in areas that are not directly impacted by the laws or regulations, as I have Chirped on, “07/10/20 Distance Makes the Heart Grow Progressive”. This has resulted in the geographical separation of the Ruling/Bureaucratic and Lower-Class, while the Middle-Class and Lower- Class live in proximity to each other. This can also be seen when reviewing voting patterns based on geography. The urban areas (mostly Lower-Class) tend to vote Democratic, the Rural areas (mostly Middle-Class) tend to vote Republican and the suburban areas (both Upper and Middle Class) that swing vote between the Democrats and Republicans depending upon the issues.

This can also be seen by the term “Flyover Country”, as most of the Upper-Class and Lower-Class lives on the west coast and northeastern coastal areas, with a few Upper-Class and Lower-Class metropolitan areas in-between these coastal areas. As such, we are becoming a nation of city-states rather than local, State, and Federal governments. Throughout history, we have seen that such city-states often devolve into armed conflict between the city-states and their rural citizens and armed conflict between the city-states. Today, we do not have armed conflict, but we do have political combat between and amongst city-states, combat that the Electoral College was created to alleviate, as I have written in my article “The Electoral College”.

Consequently, we are becoming a nation of a Blue America and a Red America. A Blue America which is dependent on government and desirous of more government and a Red America that wants self-sufficiency and less government. A Bule America of the Ruling/Bureaucratic and Lower-Class, and a Red America of the new alignment of the lower Upper-Class, upper Lower-Class, and expanded support of the Middle-Class. A country in which Blue America is desirous of a Democratic Constitution, while Red America wants a Republican Constitution. A Blue America of the Democrat Party policies, and a Red America of the new Republican Party policies. A Blue America and Red America that is a house divided as we were once divided over the issue of slavery. A division on slavery that was only settled by a Civil War. Let us hope that it will not take another Civil War to resolve the differences between a Blue America and a Red America.

Alas, as the differences between of a Blue America and a Red America are mutually exclusive, and often intractable, we may need something on the order of a Civil War to resolve these differences. Let us hope that these differences do not devolve into armed conflict. The current mob actions of rioting, looting, and arson are a preview of what may become of American society, especially if there are counter mob actions against the current mob actions. Let us hope that this does not occur and that safety and security will be restored so that we nay resolve our differences peaceably. Something that the Blue American politicians seem loath to do.

The upcoming 2020 elections may be a turning point in American History, as I have written in the section of “Turning Point – The Present” of my “United States History Perspective” Article. The American electorate needs to be cognizant of this turning point and vote wisely on the future course of America. Let us remember to vote to assure that the “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” prevail in America. The American electorate should also remember that you cannot have both a Blue and a Red America, as trying to have it both ways has led us to where we are today in America. An America of A Blue America and A Red America.

09/11/20 International Relations

Under President Trump, for the first time in decades, America has not entered into any armed conflicts. President Trump has also renegotiated several large trade deals, while insisting that our trading partners live up to their other existing deals. He has also insisted that other treaties of alliance be fulfilled and enforced. All of this was done under the Rubicon of placing American’s interests first. In doing so, he has upset the previous accepted rationale of international relationships. Free Trade, which was often unfair trade through currency manipulation and/or state supported and funded businesses, was changed or curtailed to be fairer for all Americans. President Trump is also seeking for America to become less dependent on foreign imports that are essential to our self-sufficiency. America also rejected the concept of leading from behind and started leading from the forefront. Our military was strengthened and became more respected and protective of America’s interests.

This, of course, has upset and put a strain on many of our relationships with other nations, as well as the vested interests in America of those who profit from these relationships. However, President Trump and many others have justified their actions as for the betterment of all Americans. Whether this is true or not is debatable, but we have seen a growth in industries in America that were once stagnant under the old agreements. We have also seen a new respect, or perhaps trepidation, for America’s leadership on the world stage.

With the Coronavirus Pandemic we have also seen a reevaluation of our relationship with China. Our relationship with Russia has also changed because of the sanctions placed upon them by President Trump. Our becoming self-sufficient in energy production has also change the tenor of our relationships with other nations, most notably in the Middle East. And hostile nations and terrorist groups were put on notice that America would no longer tolerate their actions and seek to destroy or kill those organizations and persons involved in these acts of terrorism.

Despite fierce opposition President Trump has begun to control illegal immigration as Americans have begun to realize that illegal immigration can bring with it crime, drugs, disease, and negative economic impacts on Lower-Class Americans. This illegal immigration has also brought about increased governmental spending on social services and other essential government services, as I have Chirped on, “07/17/20 Essential and Non-Essential Spending”. This increase of governmental services has a corresponding increase of taxes to pay for these governmental services. We have also begun to see the impact of excessive Visas and the overstaying of these Visas for the purposes of temporarily business, for tourism, or for a combination of both purposes. We have also seen how other nations, most notably China, have been utilizing Visas to illegally obtain trade secrets, science and technology theft, and sometimes election meddling or espionage. The pernicious influence on our Colleges and Universities of educational Visas has also been illuminated.

In all these actions by President Trump he has altered the previous decades thoughts and opinions about international relationships. And all of this was accomplished with the chagrin and opposition by those persons, organizations, and businesses that profited by the previous arrangements. The question for Americans is if they wish to continue this course of international relations or return to the previous ways of international relations? A vote for Donald Trump is a vote for a continuation for this new course, while a vote for Joe Biden is a return to the previous course of international relations.

09/10/20 Do Not Bring the Reasons with You

In the last decade, we have seen the increased fleeing of people in American cities to the suburbs. Whether they leave for crime, taxes, property values, schooling, economic, or other reasons, the people who can afford to move to the suburbs are moving in greater numbers. It is not only people who are moving to the suburbs, but many businesses are also moving to the suburbs. Those that remain are from the lower-class citizens that cannot afford to move and are more likely to be harmed by unemployment because of businesses fleeing. Such fleeing harms the cities, as they have a decreased tax base, and they require more social service for those that remain. It is also placing a strain on suburban governmental services, as an increase in population means an increase in spending on these governmental services. Increased governmental services that require increased taxes to support these services. This cycle is destructive to both the cities and suburbs.

The other problem that the suburbs face is that an influx of population begets an influx of voters. These new voters often do not consider the political reasons for their moving. Voters that will often continue to vote for governmental services and policies that led them to move from the cities. They, therefore, are importing into the suburbs the same problems that caused them to flee the cities. The same problems that will arise in the suburbs if they continue to vote for the same services and policies that caused them to flee the cities. The question is, where will they flee to when these problems inflict the suburbs?

It is important for these new voters to examine their voting, as not to import these problems into the suburbs. An examination that rarely occurs as they reflexive vote for the politicians that espouse the same solutions to these problems that they unsuccessfully implemented in the cities. The biggest examination that is required is of the policy problems that I have written about in my article on, “The Problem is Systemic Liberalisms & Progressivisms”, and is often a result of my article, “Systemic Family, Education, and Faith Problems” illuminates. They should also consider “The Biggest Falsehoods in America” and reevaluate their positions on these topics.

These new voters need to make wiser votes and reject the unwise policies that they fled from. They should also remember that:

“You cannot implement a wrong social policy the right way. For if it is a wrong social policy it will always fail. While the goals of a social policy may be noble the details of its implementation will determine if the goal can be reached (i.e., the devil is in the details).”
  - Mark Dawson

Therefore, let us all not implement the wrong social policies throughout America, while these new suburban voters need to consider the political reasons for their leaving the cities and vote accordingly.

09/09/20 Everything the Left Touches

The history of the Left is to be a destroyer and not a builder. As Dennis Prager wrote more than two years ago in a column, "Whatever the Left Touches It Ruins." He listed eight examples:

He has now added the sciences to this list in his new column, “Everything the Left Touches It Ruins. Now Add Science” with good reasoning. I would encourage you to read these columns and examine his reasoning. Today, Science is being perverted by Progressives and Leftists to support their policy agendas rather than discovering scientific truths. And politicians are using this perversion to advance their political agenda as I have Chirped on, “08/24/20 The Misuse and Abuse of Science, Statistics, and Studies by Politicians”.

Whenever the Leftists gains control of a society, it destroys society, and in its place, it implements some form of Socialism. A socialism that begets failed economies, political repressions, mass deaths, and numerous violations of Human Rights. Unfortunately, the Democrat Party has drifted to the left, and its policy positions are under the influence of the Leftists in the party. Many of the Democrat Party positions have a decidedly Leftists, and therefore Socialist, orientation. Although they cloak these policy positions in lofty words, slogans, and phrases, along with protestations of social goods, they are policies that are socialistic. This happens because to implement these policy positions requires government control of the actions of people and government control over the economy, which is socialistic.

We need for the Left to stop touching things, and where they have touched things, we need to fix them. The start of this fixing is to remove the Democrat Party from positions of power. The Democrat Party needs to reformulate itself and adopt policy positions that advance “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” rather than for some. We then need to address the pernicious influence of leftism in our society, as Dennis Prager has written. If we do not do so, I fear for the ruination of our country.

I shall end this Chirp with what I have written in the Introduction of my Article, “Socialism (democratic or otherwise) is Serfdom”, as this is the biggest touching that the left wishes to implement:

Democratic Socialism, wealth redistribution, income inequality, tax the rich, occupy Wall Street, free education, free healthcare, etc. is all the same principle – Socialism or "You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it." To implement these items requires that you take from one class of people (those that work and toil) and give to another class of people (those who do not work and toil). And it is accomplished through Government intervention (coercion through threats of fines and/or imprisonment). The government decides what and how much to take, and what and how much to give. This is not the same as taxes, as taxes are levied to support the necessary functions of the government for the good of all, not for the good of some. Therefore, with Socialism, the government is the master of all the citizens, and the citizens are the serfs of the government.

The Socialism model requires that all decisions being made would be, directly or indirectly, made collectively and be applied equally to all members of the society. This would require that a government decide (either through direct democracy or indirect representative democracy) what is best for its citizens (and we all know how good bureaucrats are at deciding what’s best for us), as well as central planning by the government on economic decisions (which has never worked throughout history).

Socialism is immoral as it requires that the will of the majority be imposed upon the minority. If the socialist majority decides that abortion, or alcohol consumption, or drug and marijuana usage, or gambling, or vegetarianism, etc. is wrong and not to be allowed, then those that disagree must acquiesce and accept their decision. There is no freedom or liberty to choose what you believe is right. This freedom to choose is essential to our human rights. As such, Socialism is a violation of human rights.

Socialism is also contrary to human nature. Mankind, as well as all other animal life, is competitive. Animals and we humans compete for food, shelter, and mates, as well as for other reasons. We also compete to improve our and our family’s lot in life. Socialism requires that we repress this competitiveness and act in the best interests of all. Human nature is that part of our psyche that is a result of millions of years of evolution. It is a basic part of all humans. We must all acknowledge our human nature and account for it in our dealings with others, as well as in the creation and administration of social policy. To not do so will result in much effort, time, and monies being spent on a task that is doomed to failure. And failure is what is inevitable if you do not account for human nature. Socialism denies or disparages, and sometimes thinks it can eliminate the competitive instinct of human nature. For someone to deny human nature, or not acknowledge human nature, is foolish, and you should not pay attention to fools.

It is also true that Socialism never works in the long run. There is simply not enough earned by those that work and toil to support those that do not work and toil. It stifles the incentive to work and toil and encourages non-work and non-toil. The incentive to invent, innovate, and expand a business decreases as the government takes more of the fruits of your sweat and toil. The economy will stagnate, falter, then collapse the longer Socialism is in-place. This is readily apparent in Europe in the last half of the 20th century, and the first part of the 21st century, as many European nations economies are faltering and collapsing due to the weight of Socialism. The end results of Socialism can be seen in South and Central America as economies have collapsed, and the citizens are impoverished and destitute (Venezuela is an excellent example of the end result of Socialism).

Socialism can also lead to evil. Often, Socialism requires the forceful imposition of its policies. A force that can be injurious and/or deadly. If you oppose socialist policies, or in a minority group within Socialism, you will be repressed, fined, and perhaps imprisoned for your acts or speech of your conscience. One need only look at the history of the 20th century to confirm this. Communism, Nazism, Fascism, and Imperial Japan had Socialism as the basis of their economic policies, as explained in my article “Nazism & Fascism”. The history of these ideologies, which were based on Socialism, is mass deaths and murders, starvation, communicable diseases, imprisonment, economic deprivation, and suppression of human rights, the very definition of evil.

Therefore, to implement Socialism also requires that the government restrict the freedoms and liberties of its citizens, as well as violate the human rights of its peoples. So, when you hear someone advocating any form of Socialism, it is to advocate the serfdom of its people, and this should always be resisted and in all places.

09/08/20 The Biggest Falsehoods in America

As I have posted in my Article on “The Biggest Falsehoods in American” I examine the issues that I believe are misrepresented, misreported, and misunderstood in America. If we cannot dispassionately discuss these falsehoods utilizing “Reasoning” in our election cycle that we cannot make informed decisions about the solutions to the problems in America, nor can we elect leaders that will make wise decisions on these problems. In alphabetical order, these biggest falsehoods are:

These falsehoods are often accepted as truths of America, especially by the Progressives and Leftists in America. They are taken as givens and espoused by Progressives Commentators, “Mainstream Media”, and “Mainstream Cultural Media”. They are taught and indoctrinated in schools, Colleges, and Universities, and they are even utilized in commercial advertising on television. Big Tech – Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook, Instagram (a division of Facebook), Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube (a division of Google), also utilize these falsehoods as a basis for filtering, tagging, and removing content as “untruthful”, if these falsehoods are challenged on their platforms. People can experience “Cancel Culture” if they do not agree or speak out against these falsehoods. Recently we have seen indoctrination of some of these falsehoods in the workplace and government agencies under the guise of combating an “Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchy Society”. These falsehoods are often buttressed by the use and misuse of statistics, as I have written in my article, "Oh What A Tangled Web We Weave".

Most insidious is that the Democrat Party has accepted these falsehoods as truths and base their entire policy positions on these falsehoods. This bespeaks of an America that is a dark and gloomy place that needs a “fundamental transformation” to achieve the American Ideals, as I have written in my article, “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. Their policy positions are to achieve equality of outcomes rather than equality of opportunities as I have Chirped on, “07/01/20 Equality of Opportunity is Antithetical to Equality of Outcome”. Such policy positions exacerbate the divisiveness within America, as it pits one group against another group of Americans.

The belief in these falsehoods leads to a distorted viewpoint on American society and American history. To solve the issues that these problems allude too requires that we understand the true nature of these problems. Unfortunately, because of the misinformation on these problems, this is not possible. Politicians and activists are more interested in scoring political points and garnering votes, along with other motivations that interfere with our understanding. Let us all begin to understand the true nature of these problems so that we can work together on solving the real issues of these problems. And let us not succumb to the political rhetoric about these Biggest Falsehoods in America.

09/06/20 Political Demeanor

Many do not like the demeanor of President Trump, and I do not particularly care for the demeanor of President Trump. Many Trump-defecting persons say that their decision to switch alliances stem from the President's combative nature, his crude, often insensitive remarks, and his inability to emote empathy. Much of this lack of empathy is in his public conduct, but his personal interactions, as testified by many, are one of concern and compassion for others.

The President's narcissistic, impulsive nature continues to disturb me, too, but seeing our nation plummet into a socialistic, crime-ridden, economically stagnant society that would come about from leftist-tilting Biden and Harris, who appear unwilling or incapable of stopping it, concerns me much more. Much of the criticisms pf President Trump’s nature may also be of the critics projecting their own nature upon President Trump. Carefully reviewing the commentary and opinions of President Trump’s critics reveals that the critics have a narcissistic view in that they believe that they are always correct, and they often impulsively say whatever they think counters President Trump regardless of facts and without references to past statements by President Trump’s opponents.

President Trump’s apparent narcissistic, impulsive nature may simply be showmanship for the purposes of political messaging. A political messaging that is required to overcome “Modern Journalism”, as Modern Journalism tilts the election in favor of Joe Biden and the Democrat Party as I have Chirped on, “08/20/20 Journalism in the 2020 Presidential Election”. A tilting that requires that Republican politicians not only campaign against their Democrat opponents but also to campaign against the reporting and commentary of modern journalism. A tilting in which President Trump believes that in order to overcome he must be combative and confrontational in his dealings with the press. He also believes that the only way to break through this tilting to reach the American public with his message is to be bellicose with the press and the Democrats.

But the demeanor of most Democrat Party leaders is also offensive, although it is often masked in smooth talking. Their tactics of "The Three D's (Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage) of Modern Political Debate" has resulted in the “Divisiveness in America”, and they often compare President Trump to many of the evil leaders and rulers of history. These Democrat Party leaders often decry President Trump’s demeanor and call for it to end, but they themselves seem uninterested in abating their own political demeanor. Their calls for President Trump to cease his demeanor, along without abating their own political demeanor and the nefarious impacts of Modern Journalism, would result in a decidedly one-sided advantage against President Trump.

If you are concerned by Presidents Trumps demeanor you should be just as concerned by the Democrat Party leader’s demeanor. The question is then are you more concerned about the demeanor of Donald Trump or the direction of America that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris would take us? I, for one, am much more concerned about the future direction of America than the demeanor of the candidates. If we can right our course, we can than work on improving our demeanor. But until the course is righted the demeanor will continue.

09/05/20 Judgeships

As I have written in my article, “Judges, Not Lords”, In modern United States history, the U.S. Supreme Court has played a larger role in society than it traditionally has. Many have looked to the courts to achieve social change, which I believe is injurious to the Constitutional separation of powers. The Supreme Court decisions start with District Court and Appellate Court rulings. As such, the appointment and confirmation of District and Appellate Court Judges, and Supreme Court Justices, have taken greater importance, and many times resulted in quarrelsome and divisiveness within our government.

But this is what occurs when Judges and Justices become involved in questions that should be left to legislators. Judges and Justices should only be involved in determining the facts and four-corners of the Law, and the constitutional rights of the defendants and litigants. The Four Corners of a Law is a legal doctrine that courts use to determine the meaning of a law as represented solely by its textual content. The doctrine states that where there is an ambiguity of terms, the Court must rely on the written instrument solely and cannot consider extraneous evidence. Judges need to remain within the Four Corners of the Law and the Constitution, and only rule on the words and meaning of the Law and the Constitution. If a law is ambiguous or open to misinterpretation or has constitutional implications, they need to narrowly interpret the law and the Constitution or refer the law back to the legislators for improvements or corrections. If they broadly interpret a law or the Constitution, then they stray into areas for which they bear no responsibility nor authority. The misuse of “Stare Decisis” is no excuse for allowing the continuation of a bad law or Constitution interpretation, and they need to correct these problems of a bad law or Constitutional interpretation when they are encountered. They need to leave policy differences, or social changes, to the prerogative of Congress and the Executive branches where it rightfully belongs. To do otherwise is for the Judge to become a legislator, which makes them ‘Lords, Not Judges’.

This is why the appointment and confirmation of Judges and Justice are important, and why it is important to elect a President who nominates and elect Senators who confirm these appointments. It also tells you much about the inclinations of Presidential and Senatorial candidates as to the role of the Judiciary in America. A role that you should be concerned about as it impacts our society in many different ways. This is also an issue of “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution”, as each interpretation leads to different types of judging.

It is for this reason that I was pleased by Presidential candidate Donald Trump in 2016 releasing a list of potential Supreme Court Justices that he would nominate. This list provided a sense of where Donald Trump stood on the issues of Judgeships in America. This is also the reason that I am displeased with Joe Biden not releasing a list of potential Supreme Court Justices that he would nominate. His failure to do so indicates that he does not want to provide the American people with a sense of where he stands on Judgeships in America.

The lack of Joe Biden releasing a list of potential Justices, and of Senators and Senatorial candidates not commenting on this lack, is also an indication of how impactful Judges and Justices are on American society. Impactful enough that most politicians do not wish for the voters to know where they stand on the issue of Judgeships, as it may change their vote if they had this knowledge. But if the voters knew where they stood by which type of judges they supported, they could make better judgments for whom to elect to nominate and confirm nominations for Judges and Justices.

As to those who would respond that it is improper to question a judicial nominee on a judicial issue, I would agree with them. However, a list of potential Justices is not a questioning of those Judges, but a complement of the quality of their judging. However, it is not improper to question them on their judicial philosophy as to the role of judging when they are nominated to become a Supreme Court Justice or to question any nominee for any judgeship on their judicial philosophy. Questions of their judicial philosophy that sees a judge or justice as one who should only be involved in determining the facts and four-corners of the Law, and the constitutional rights of the defendants and litigants, or one who can broadly interpret the law and the Constitution to achieve a (perceived) social good are proper. For one type of judicial philosophy leads to a separation of powers between the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of government, while the other judicial philosophy leads to the supremacy of the Judicial Branch over the Legislative and Executive branches of government.

09/04/20 Taxes

Taxes have both a direct and indirect impact on our lives. A direct impact on your wages and salaries, and an indirect impact on the costs of goods and services that you purchase. Federal Income taxes, Federal Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid taxes, as well as State Income and sales taxes, and local (especially Real Estate and School) taxes, along with a myriad of other taxes, directly impact your earnings. Tax increases on businesses that indirectly impact your earnings, as businesses will often increase their prices to compensate for an increase in taxes, taxes that you then indirectly pay. Taxes also impact the overall economy as well, as more or less taxing can slow down or speed up the economy.

Therefore, taxes and tax policies are always an issue in elections. While many Republicans advocate for fewer taxes, many Democrats advocate for more taxes.  As I have written in my article, “Tax the Rich and Make Them Pay Their Fair Share”, it is not possible to “Tax the Rich” to pay for the policies of Joe Biden and the Democrat Party. Taxes on all persons must be raised to fund these policies, and these tax increases will not be modest as these policies are not modest.

At least Joe Biden is honest when he says that he is going to raise your taxes. He has to raise your taxes to be able to pay for the policies he is advocating. He has to raise everybody’s taxes to pay for these policies, as there are not enough rich persons or corporate wealth to cover the costs of these policies. Not only will you have less money in your pocket after paying these taxes, but businesses will have to charge more for their goods and service to pay these taxes. Which, of course, means that everything will be more expensive, which reduces the earning power of your wages and salaries.

While many Urban voters are in the lower income tax brackets (or no income tax bracket), they are indirectly impacted by the tax policies of Joe Biden and the Democrat Party. Larger taxes generally mean a slower economy, which impacts employment, especially employment of the lower class. It also impacts their spending, as they have to pay more for goods and services, which raise their prices to cover these tax increases.

Suburban voters better start paying attention, because the Biden-Harris ticket and the Democratic Party platform that’s been rolled out will hit them like a ton of bricks if they win in November, as a column by Steve Levy “DNC platform should wake up Trump-wary suburbanites – here are 7 reasons why“ has written. In this column, he highlights the following tax impacts of Joe Biden’s and the Democrat Party policy position:

    1. Get ready to pay more Taxes
    2. Doubling capital gains taxes
    3. Estate taxes
    4. Raising business taxes
    5. Ending the Business Income deduction
    6. Overruling Local Zoning
    7. Violent Crimes Coming Your Way

Rural voters are impacted in the same manner as both the Urban and Suburban voters are impacted, and many times these impacts are greater in rural areas. Without a broad-based economy such as urban and suburban areas afford, a rural area can be devastated if one sector of their economy is negatively impacted by increased taxes.

The other question of increased taxes is what is the maximum percentage of your income that should be collected in taxes is? The more you pay in taxes, the more you are working for the government, and the less you are working for yourself and your family. In the Middle Ages, one third to one half or more of the labor of a serf went directly to the King or Prince that they lived under. Today, if you combine the local, State, and Federal taxes that you pay, we see this same percentage of taxes collected. As such, have we have become serfs to the government? The question is, then what is the proper percent of taxes to be paid to support the government? The more government services and benefits offered by the government requires a larger percentage of taxes to be paid. Conversely, fewer government services and benefits require less of a percent of taxes to be paid. This is an issue of “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution” as which Constitutional interpretation you favor drives how much taxes you need to collect.

As I have also written in my article, “Tax the Rich and Make Them Pay Their Fair Share”, the progressive income tax structure is a concern on the percentage of taxes that you pay. A large percentage of Americans pay little or no taxes on their income. When you pay little or no taxes, then any discussion of increasing taxes has little or no direct impact on your life. As such, a large percentage of the American electorate has little or no direct concern on increased taxes, but, perversely, has an interest in increasing taxes on others to support increased benefits for themselves. This split has the effect of pitting one group of Americans (those who pay little or no taxes) against another group of Americans (those that pay taxes). It has the consequence of robbing Peter (those who pay taxes) to pay Paul (those who pay little or no taxes). A split that has a direct impact on elections in America, and a split that divides the Democrat and Republican parties.

Over the last several decades, we have seen the Democrat Party drift to becoming the party of the interests of people who pay little or no taxes, and of the wealthy people who are negligibly impacted by tax increases. Conversely, the Republican Party has become the party of the interests of taxpayers who are directly and negatively impacted by tax increases. We have also seen the Democrat Party try to obscure this divide, while the Republican Party has tried to highlight this divide.

As a result of this divide, the question for the American electorate is, do we want to elect leaders that would impose more taxes (Democrats) or fewer taxes (Republicans) upon the American people? The answer to that question has a direct impact on the “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”, as more taxes constrict or Freedoms and Liberties, while fewer taxes expand our Freedoms and Liberties. It is also a question, as Abraham Lincoln stated:

"You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it." No matter in what shape it comes, whether from the mouth of a king who seeks to bestride the people of his own nation and live by the fruit of their labor, or from one race of men as an apology for enslaving another race, it is the same tyrannical principle.
- Abraham Lincoln, in the Lincoln-Douglas Debates

Today, it is not Kings or Slaveholders, but the government that takes the fruit of our labors in taxes and gives it in benefits to those who have not earned it. It is the same tyrannical principle. As to those who would respond that this is being done under the ‘General Welfare’ clause of the Constitution, I would remind them that the General Welfare clause is under the “Limited and Enumerated Powers” of the Constitution. And I can find no Limited and Enumerated power of the Federal Government to take the labor of one person and give it to another person.

09/03/20 Local Control vs. Federal Regulation

The Trump administration recently rescinded the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) regulations of the Obama administration. They were the first significant regulations since the Fair Housing Act of 1968 requiring federal agencies, particularly HUD, as well as states, counties, and cities to institute non-discriminatory housing policies if they receive HUD funds.

The AFFH not only banned discrimination, but it also required meaningful local governmental actions to undo what the Federal government determined were decades of federal, state, and local discriminatory policies and practices that resulted in segregated communities. As with all Federal regulation “The Devil is in the Details”, and the AFFH has many devils. As Stanley Kurtz has written in his National Review article, “Attention America’s Suburbs: You Have Just Been Annexed”:

“The plan has three elements: 1) Inhibit suburban growth, and when possible encourage suburban re-migration to cities. This can be achieved, for example, through regional growth boundaries (as in Portland), or by relative neglect of highway-building and repair in favor of public transportation. 2) Force the urban poor into the suburbs through the imposition of low-income housing quotas. 3) Institute “regional tax-base sharing,” where a state forces upper-middle-class suburbs to transfer tax revenue to nearby cities and less-well-off inner-ring suburbs (as in Minneapolis/St. Paul).”

The ramifications of implementing AFFH are widespread. Local taxes would have to be raised to build low-income housing, school taxes would have to be raised to pay for the influx of school age children, taxes would have to be raised to pay for increased governmental services such as firefighting, policing, code enforcement /zoning, and public works. All these tax increases would be necessary due to the inflow of new low-income residents.

More insidious is the impacts on the quality of life on the residents. Most people moved to the suburbs to escape the problems of the cities. With AFFH you would bring the problems of the cities to the suburbs. Those that could afford to move from the AFFH suburbs to other locales would do so, while those who remained would see their property values decrease.

Most insidious is that it would negate local control of local government from the residents of the local government. A regional agency would be formed to administer the AFFH regulations, which would not be directly elected by the people, nor responsive to the will of the people. A regional authority that would be formed which would be only responsive to the Federal bureaucrats who administer AFFH.

The AFFH is an assault on our democratic-republic form of governance. A democratic-republic form of governance based on local, State, and Federal authorities with limited duties and responsibilities, that are responsive to the will of the voters of these authorities.

Thankfully, President Trump has rescinded the AFFH. However, Joe Biden has promised to reinstitute the AFFH and extend the AFFH powers. Therefore, all voters should consider the AFFH implications when the cast their votes. A vote for Joe Biden is an approval and institution of AFFH, while a vote for Donald Trump is a rejection of AFFH.

09/02/20 Tis the Season – Of the Blame Game

With the 2020 Presidential elections now in full swing, we have seriously entered into the season of the blame game. A season of improper “Dialog & Debate”, the misuse of “Statistics and Polling”, and the espousing of “Lies and Beliefs”. A season in which we shall have more “Divisiveness in America”, and the extensive utilization of the tactics of "Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)" of political opponents. A season in which each side blames the others for the problems in America and each side credits themselves for that which is good in America.

Although both Democrats and Republicans engage in these tactics, the Democrats voice are more effective as they have a louder voice for these tactics as a result of “Modern Journalism”, and as I have Chirped on, “08/20/20 Journalism in the 2020 Presidential Election”. The Democrats often utilize lofty words and phrases and often state noble goals, but they like to obscure their actual policy positions as they know that “The Devil is in the Details”, and many of their details are highly controversial.

Also, the Democrats often espouse “The Biggest Falsehoods in America” to advance their political agenda and fail to account for the lessons of history, as I have outlined in my Article, “Condemned to Repeat It”. They also like to proclaim that they will bring Americans together, as I have Chirped on, “08/21/20 Bringing Us Together”. Their claims of togetherness, noble goals, and words and phrases that do not match their tactics nor match their deeds.

Some of the blame is properly placed, most especially in the current mob actions of rioting, looting, assaults, and arson in many cities. It is the Democrat leaders in these cities and States that are allowing and sometimes encouraging these actions. Mob actions that infringe upon the Constitutional rights of the citizens of these States, and it is the local and State Democrat leaders who are responsible for the inactions. It is also true that the Democrat Leadership at all levels of government, Federal, State, and local, have not roundly condemned these actions and called for them to cease. These mob actions are assaults on the Constitutional Rights of the people caught in them. They they need to cease and be roundly condemned by all politicians and leaders who have sworn an Oath of Office to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution of the United States, as I have stated in my Chip of, “08/31/20 Insurrection”. Indeed, in the 2020 Democrat National Convention, these mob actions were not even addressed.

If you listened to Democrats at their 2020 Presidential Convention, you would think that America is a dark and gloomy place, filled with systemic racism, police misconduct, injustice, patriarchal hierarchies, Coronavirus dread, economic calamity, oppressions, and inequalities. They paint a dystopian picture of America, with the only salvation being the election of Democrats. It is no wonder that they appeared angry and depressed, as everybody should be angry and depresses in a dystopia. While some small part of these ills may be true, it is mostly true in those places in America that have been under Democrat Party control for decades. This is in large part as a result as my article, “Systemic Family, Education, and Faith Problems” illuminates, and as a consequence of my Article on, “The Problem is Systemic Liberalisms & Progressivisms”.

If you listened to Republicans at their 2020 Presidential Convention, you would think that America is nothing but a land of hope and opportunity. America is a land of opportunity, but it does have its problems. However, the problems of America can be addressed through peaceful actions by its citizens and its leaders. America is still the best hope of humanity, and America is still the best place to achieve “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. America is also a work in progress, as we have not also met our ideals, but we are constantly striving to meet these ideals.

The Republicans like to accuse the Democrats of not embracing these ideals, but this is mainly a clash of interpretation of “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution” by the two parties. As I have outlined in this article, there are two different interpretations of the Constitution. A difference that leads to different roles of governance in America. Different roles of government that is exemplified by Federal vs. State powers, a large government vs. a small government, an intrusive government vs. a noninterference government, expansive social policies vs. limited social policies, maximal taxation vs. minimal taxation, and majority rule vs. minorities rights.

But such a clash may be helpful to America in resolving our differences, if it is done in a respectful manner and with a rational debate as I have outlined in my articles, “Dialog & Debate” and “Reasoning”. However, this has not been the case in the last several decades, as each side has drawn battle lines and will cede nothing to the other side. But in the case of the larger issues regarding the role of government and the preservation of our Human and Constitutional rights these battle lines are important to be delineated for Americans to decide the future course of America. Much as the Revolutionary War and the Civil War delineated the issues of governance and slavery (as I have written in my articles, “The Meaning of the American Revolution” and “The Meaning of the American Civil War”), we need to delineate and choose whether we want “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution” that clearly defines the role of government in society. Until one side triumphs over the other side, we can expect the battle to continue. As for the smaller issues, we can hope that some comprise can be achieved, but I do not have much hope as the resolution to this clash determines how we will govern and what policy positions to implement.

Legislation is advanced not for the purpose of solving America’s’ problems but for political advantage and political gamesmanship. Arguments for or against this legislation are based on feelings rather than thinking. Feelings that can, and often, lead you astray and could be harmful to American society. The costs and benefits of such legislation, nor the “The Law of Unintended Consequences” is considered when advancing this legislation. The increased deficits and national debt incurred because of this legislation do not seem to factor into the debates. An increase in the deficit and debt that shifts the cost of spending to future generations of Americans. Laws, rules, and regulations are promulgated by career politicians or career bureaucrats, and they are often based on political factors rather than what is best for America, nor what is economically practicable. Special interest groups have more sway over the formation of these laws, rules, and regulations then the interests of the common person.

While the Republican Party has special interest groups, their strategy to obtain votes and gain political power is not based on the tactics of pitting one group against another group, nor for the benefit of one group over another group. They support interest groups when they believe that the interest group agenda fits within their governing philosophy. However, The Democratic Party’s entire strategy and tactics is to pit one group against another, promising one benefit or another for each group, or special treatments for one group over another. Their promises that are difficult and expensive to achieve, as well as having serious consequences on American society.

My hope is also fading because I have noticed that the Democrats are taking a reflexive approach and polarizing tactics in their battles with President Trump and the Republicans. No tactics are out of bounds with the Democrats. Tactics of the personal destruction of anyone who supports or works for President Trump, a bogus Russian Collusion Investigation and ludicrous Impeachment proceedings, blaming President Trump for the deaths in the Coronavirus Pandemic, and now placing the blame for the mob actions upon President Trump and the Republicans. The Democrats have also forgotten or ignored the importance of "The Rule of Law in Non-Judicial Proceedings", and they will ruin or destroy any person or any entity who may oppose them in order to achieve their goals.

The Democrat leaders have also exhibited a propensity to rule rather than lead, as I have outlined in my article, "To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders". They have also demonstrated a reflex that whatever is wrong with America is President Trump’s fault, as, according to Democrats, he is always wrong, mostly bad, and sometimes evil. I am reminded of the song in the movie ‘Horse Feathers’, “I'm Against It“, with Groucho Marx as WAGSTAFF.

[WAGSTAFF]
I don't know what they have to say
It makes no difference anyway
Whatever it is, I'm against it
No matter what it is or who commenced it
I'm against it
Your proposition may be good
But let's have one thing understood:
Whatever it is, I'm against it
And even when you've changed it or condensed it
I'm against it
I'm opposed to it
On general principles, I'm opposed to it
[STUDENTS]
He's opposed to it
In fact, indeed, he's opposed to it
[WAGSTAFF]
For months before my son was born
I used to yell from night till morn
"Whatever it is, I'm against it."
And I've been yelling since I first commenced it
I'm against it

The Democratic Party has become the party of ‘I'm against it’, with ‘it’ being President Trump. They are a party running on the tactics of opposition to everything that President Trump is in favor of, and a party that does not espouse their policies, but instead runs on lofty words and platitudes that bear little relationship to reality. Indeed, they try to mask their policy positions from the American electorate, as their policies are often anathema to the public when they become known. An against it and masking that that does not forebode well for America if they are elected. And their entire 2020 election campaign seems to be of the blame game.

09/01/20 The Assault on Our Constitutional Rights

Along with the mob actions as stated in my Chip of, “08/31/20 Insurrection”, in today’s society, we are also seeing an assault on our Constitutional rights, an assault the likes of which we have not seen since the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798. An infringement on the Bill of Rights, I have written about in my article “The Underlying Meaning of the Bill of Rights”, and my Chirps of, “07/25/20 The Free Exercise of Our Rights” and “07/15/30 Ministry of Truth”. We have also forgotten the true meaning of these rights, as I have also expounded upon in my articles of:

We Americans treasure our rights and often invoke them, especially those rights incorporated into the Bill of Rights and the 13th through 15th Amendments to the Constitution. However, what good are rights if you cannot exercise them? And by ‘cannot exercise them, I mean the fear of exercising them. The free exercise of our rights requires freedom from fear of intimidation and harm in exercising our rights for these rights to exist. Not only the freedom of fear of governmental actions, but the freedom of fear from individuals, groups, and entities actions.

This is often done by utilizing "The Three D's (Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage) of Modern Political Debate" to smear a person, and the “Cancel Culture” utilized to ruin a person. The fears of such actions that effectively prohibit the free exercise of our free speech rights, as I discussed in my Chirp of “07/25/20 The Free Exercise of Our Rights”. I have also written on this topic in the subsection “The Right of Free Speech” of my aforementioned History article, “The Underlying Meaning of the Bill of Rights”.

Your right to free speech is also being limited by Big Tech – Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook, Instagram (a division of Facebook), Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube (a division of Google) – a limitation which has moved into overdrive in their Standards and Practices divisions as I have outlined in my Chirp, “08/07/20 Who Needs Government Suppression When You Have Big Tech Suppression?”. This overdrive is a result of the 2020 Presidential election and is directed at anyone who would disagree with their political viewpoint, a viewpoint that has a decidedly progressive, leftists, and Democratic Party oriented. Their suppression of contrary viewpoints has serious consequences on our society.

Peaceable assembly is no longer peaceable, as demonstrated by the current mob actions of rioting, looting, assaults, and arson in many cities. These mob actions are an assault on our Constitutional rights as I have aforementioned in my Chirp of “08/31/20 Insurrection”.

Religious Freedom is also under assault, for if you practice your religious freedom outside of your home or place of worship, you can be condemned or limited, and indeed you are subject to “Cancel Culture” if you exercise your right to Religious Freedom. Religion is not only what you practice in your home or place of worship, but in how you conduct your everyday life. Religious conduct that many want to limit or constrict. All under the guise of ‘tolerance’, a tolerance that they do not wish to extend to persons that exercise their Religious Freedoms in their everyday life, as I have written in the subsection “The Right to Practice Religion” of my aforementioned History article, “The Underlying Meaning of the Bill of Rights”.

Your right to keep and bear arms has been under assault for several decades. An assault led by calls of commonsense gun control, limitations on the purchase of types of firearms and accouterments, and regulations on the purchase of firearms and ammunition. An assault as I have written in the subsection “The Right to Bear Arms” of my aforementioned History article, “The Underlying Meaning of the Bill of Rights”. As we do not regulate or restrict our Freedom of Speech, why should we be able to restrict or regulate our Right to Keep and Bear Arms? The restrictions and regulations on both of these rights that are antithetical to the purpose and intent of the Constitution.

As to the other Constitutional Rights that I mentioned in the first paragraph of this Chirp, I would direct you to the aforementioned hyperlinked articles on these topics.

All of these assaults are a result of “Modern American Fascism”. Modern Fascism does not want to be confused or confronted by the facts. They only want what they want without any questioning as to the human rights impacts or wisdom of doing what they want. Unpleasant facts and truths that contravene their beliefs are to be ignored or obfuscated away. Double talk, smoke and mirrors, illogic, or unreason are to be utilized by modern Fascism in achieving their goals. They often accuse those that oppose them as being Nazis or Fascists due to the evil connotations of these labels, without the modern fascists understanding the true meaning of these labels.

I am reminded of the "Forrest Gump' movie line "Stupid is as stupid does".  Therefore "Fascism is as fascism does". Because Fascism has such a bad reputation and connotation in today’s society, Modern Fascism does not recognize that they are fascists. Instead, they have given themselves a new name – “Modern Progressives” or “Leftists”.  But make no mistake, Modern Progressives and Leftists are Modern Fascists, because Modern Progressives and Leftists do as Fascism does.

These Assaults on Our Constitutional Rights need to cease, and roundly condemned by all freedom-loving Americans. They also need to be vigorously opposed by all politicians and leaders in our local, State, and Federal government. If these politicians and leaders cannot do so, they are unfit to lead a people dedicated to “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. If they cannot meet their duty and responsibility to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution of the United States, they need to be removed from office.

08/31/20 Insurrection

The current mob actions of rioting, looting, assaults, and arson in many cities are well passed the limits of a peaceable assembly to protest injustices in America. They have become insurrections against the legal and lawful authority of the State and local governments, and indeed, are directed at the legal and lawful authority of the Federal government. They no longer wish to correct injustices but to overthrow our republican government. And they must stop, and Law and Order restored, and the Constitutional rights of all the citizens are protected. The question is how to best end these mob actions within the Constitution and the Laws of the Land.

The “Insurrection Act of 1807”, is a United States federal law (10 U.S.C. §§ 251–255; prior to 2016, 10 U.S.C. §§ 331–335; amended 2006, 2007) that empowers the President of the United States to deploy U.S. military and federalized National Guard troops within the United States in particular circumstances, such as to suppress civil disorder, insurrection and rebellion.

The Insurrection Act provides a "statutory exception" to the “Posse Comitatus Act” of 1878, which limits the use of military personnel under federal command for law enforcement purposes within the United States. Before invoking the powers under the Act, 10 U.S.C. § 254 requires the President to first publish a proclamation ordering the insurgents to disperse. The Insurrection Act has been invoked twenty-two times throughout United States history.

The 14th Amendment to the Constitution, as explained in my article “The Meaning to the Thirteenth through Fifteenth Amendments to the US Constitution”, was intended to assure the Constitutional rights of the citizens within a State. With the mob actions that infringe upon the Constitutional rights of the citizens of these States, the mob actions, and the inaction of the local and State governments, are violating the 14th Amendment, as well as other parts of the Constitution.

Article IV Section 4 of the United States Constitution states:

“The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened), against domestic Violence.”

In addition, Article IV Section 1 of the United States Constitution states:

“All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

Under the Constitution, all levels of government have a duty and responsibility to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution of the United States. They also have the duty and responsibility to assure “the equal protection of the laws” for all persons within the jurisdiction of the United States. As the mob does not have a Republican Form of Government, their actions are a form of succession or rebellion from the United States, and the people within the mobs' sphere of actions are not equally protected under the law, the actions of the mob are Unconstitutional. The words and deeds, and the inactions of the Mayors and the Governors where mob actions are occurring demonstrate their lack of fealty to the Constitution and, therefore, require a response from the Federal government. This lack of fealty to the Constitution should also be the basis for the removal from office of the Mayor and Governor under Amendment XIV, Section 3 of the Constitution:

“No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”

Therefore, all levels of government have the duty and responsibility under Article IV Section 4 of the Constitutional to end the actions of the mob forthwith, and to remove such persons from office who did not meet their duty and responsibility to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution of the United States under Amendment XIV, Section 3 of the Constitution.

The mob, if peaceable, can pressure Legislators to make, amend, or rescind laws that it thinks are needed to assure justice in America. They can also challenge laws in a Court of Law if they think that such laws are unconstitutional. This is the republican way of effecting change in America. Rioting, looting, assaults, and arson by a mob are unacceptable means of effecting change in America.

It is well past time for the President of the United States to invoke the Insurrection Act and enforce the 14th Amendment protections of the Constitutional rights of the citizens within a State. To not do so is to fuel the insurrection and endanger our republican form of government.

08/30/20 Common Sense

Throughout my Chirps and Articles, I have mentioned applying common sense, but common sense can lead you astray. What most people mean by “Common Sense” is common knowledge and sensible responses. But common knowledge may not be so common amongst many people, or sensible responses may differ among reasonable people. I have excepted my “Common Sense” subsection from my “Life” Article for your review and consideration.

08/29/20 Let Them Boycott

No one is saying athletes should not have social consciences or forums to express their political views. But the game is not such a forum, not if they expect people to attend or tune in. An excellent article, “Let Them Boycott!” By Andrew C. McCarthy on August 29, 2020 examines this issue. I would encourage all to read this article, especially professional athletes.

08/28/20 My History Questions

To discover a person’s knowledge of American History, I often as them a question that is illuminative of their knowledge. I ask them what the history, purpose, and reasoning of the 3/5 clause and the skirting of the issue of slavery in the creation of the U.S. Constitution? If they give me a satisfactory explanation, I then ask them why the extinction of slavery did not occur as they expected? I will finally ask them why the Emancipation Proclamation did not free all the slaves?

Most people do not have a good answer to these questions, as they are unknowledgeable about American history. Many Progressives, and most Leftist, give an answer that is bereft of historical knowledge and is often irrational. Their explanation often reeks of Political Correctness rather that knowledgeable intellectual reasoning.

For the answer to these questions I would direct you to my article, “Slavery in the United States Constitution”.

08/27/20 Voting in America

Sometimes the light's all shinin' on me,
Other times I can barely see.
Lately it occurs to me what a long, strange trip it's been.
- From the Grateful Dead – Truckin'

And what a long, strange trip it’s been regarding voting rights in the United States. From “Free white landholders with a religious affiliation” to “One Person, One Vote”, it has been a tortuous journey full of twists and turns, and sometimes backsliding, to reach where we are today. The litany of voting rights abuses, of disenfranchisement, and of voter suppression and intimidation, “We the People of the United States”, have been through it all regarding voting rights. We have become much better with regard to voting in America, but there is always room for improvement. My new article, “Voting in America” examines these problems. The topics that I cover are:

This is a rather long article, but as the problems are many, varied, and intricate, it is necessarily long.

As to the charge that the Postal system is being manipulated to influence the election, there is no veracity to these charges that the Trump administration is trying to ‘rig’ the vote via the Postal system. It is yet another conspiracy theory propagated by Democratic Party leaders to smear the Trump administration, and perhaps laying the groundwork for charges of an unfair election if the Democrats lose the election. No matter how the election turns out, the losing side will utilize the charges of voter fraud by mail-in votes to delegitimize the winning side. A delegitimization that will further exacerbate the divisiveness in America.

08/24/20 The Misuse and Abuse of Science, Statistics, and Studies by Politicians

My early childhood love of Science Fiction led to my adult love of Science and Technology. I satisfied my love of technology by “My Varied Computer Career”, and my love of science was satisfied with my extensive readings and viewership of scientific documentaries. (most of which were on the Physical Sciences and its history). Much of the knowledge that I have gained I have written about in the “Science Articles” section of this website. I am a firm believer that science is the best way of explaining the physical properties and physical laws of the universe, which contributes to the advancement of humanity. Being knowledgeable about Science, I am also keenly aware of the problems and issues of utilizing science. Not only the problems and issues within science but with the problems and issues of utilizing science for public policy. Many of the problems and issues within science I have explained in my article, "Scientific Consensus and Settled Science", as well as other of my Science articles. Many of the issues of utilizing science for public policy are because of the politicians and general public’s misunderstanding of the meaning of scientific consensus and settled science, which I have also illuminated in my “Glass Houses” article. It is to the issues and problems of Science in Public Policy that I write this Chirp. First, however, a brief recap of my “Scientific Consensus and Settled Science” article.

In science, it should be remembered that nothing is settled. A scientific theory is simply the best explanation that fits all the known facts based on observations and experiments. New facts from observations and experiments, or discrepancies in older facts, or unexplained phenomena in a scientific theory leads to a reevaluation of the theory. Until new knowledge is obtained, that is in variance with a Scientific Theory; the theory can be considered scientifically settled, but subject to modification or replacement as warranted by the discovery of new facts.

However, a consensus in Science is only an indication of a majority opinion, an opinion that can be as wrong as it could be right. And scientific consensus can lead you astray, as it has been wrong in the past and will continue to be wrong as new facts are obtained, or new scientific hypotheses are proposed. Therefore, never interpret a scientific consensus as something that is scientifically settled. Always be wary of anyone, including scientists, who claim the authority of Scientific Consensus or that something is Scientifically Settled, as they are most probably wrong. Only when all the observations and experiments have confirmed a scientific hypothesis is it elevated to a Scientific Theory. A Scientific Theory that you can believe is scientifically settled, but always be wary as a new observation or experiment that may overturn settled science.

As to Statistics and Studies, they can be and are often done improperly. They are also often misinterpreted or misused as I have written in my article, "Oh What A Tangled Web We Weave". Knowing what is important, what is unimportant, and what is misleading when reviewing studies or statistics is crucial to discovering the truth. Studies and Statistics can show anything. For every study or statistics that show something, there is another's study or statistics that show the opposite. This is because every study or statistics has an inherent bias of the person or persons conducting the study or statistics or the person or organization that commissioned the study or statistics. A very good person conducting the study or statistics recognizes their biases and compensates for them, to ensure that the study or statistics is as accurate as possible. Having been the recipient of many studies (and the author of a few), I can attest to this fact. Therefore, you should be very wary when a person says, "Studies Show" or “Statistics Show”. You should always carefully look into the study or statistics to determine who the authors are, who commissioned the study or statistics and examine the study or statistics for any inherent biases.

When a politician makes a claim of “Scientific Consensus” or “Settled Science”, it is readily apparent to anyone who knows Science, and the issues of consensus or settled science, that the politician has no idea of what they are saying. This no idea of what they are saying by politicians, unfortunately, applies to technological issues as well.  It is all pre-canned quips, slogans, or pithy sayings when they speak, and it is usually done for the purposes of grandstanding. Their questioning of scientific witnesses in committee hearings also reveals a lack of understanding of Science and Technology by politicians. Also, when a politician utilizes ‘Studies’ or ‘Statistics’, you be assured that they have gotten it wrong, and it is usually done for the purposes of advancing their political agenda. As the vast majority of people have little understanding of statistics, or the ability to understand statistics, we can be certain that statistics will be misinterpreted or misused. Also, most people have no understanding of the methodology or  “Reasoning” utilized within ‘Studies’, which impacts their veracity. Therefore, the saying “Studies Show” or “Statistics Show” is almost meaningless unless you examine the content of the study or statistics with a knowledgeable and critical eye.

Joe Biden, and the Democrat Party leaders, often claim that they are the party of science. They often make utterances of listening to the ‘Science’ or ‘Scientists’, and they make claims of ‘Scientific Consensus’ or ‘Settled Science’ in defending their policy positions. Yet, they do not listen too nor pay heed to any science that contradicts their policy positions. Often, they do not even acknowledge the existence of any science that contradicts their policy positions. Consequently, they are only the party of the science that supports their policy positions. When the Democrats dismiss Republicans as anti-science for listening to other scientific voices, the Democrats are being anti-science in their dismissal.

This is especially pernicious when Joe Biden, and the Democrat Party leaders, speak about the Coronavirus Pandemic. They often make scientific claims without attribution to the scientists, and I have yet to see or hear of any press conference in which they stand on stage with these scientists to explain and take questioning on their positions in regards to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Without doing so, the American public has no basis for judging the veracity of their scientific claims. President Trump, on the other hand, has had many press conferences with scientists and doctors on stage to explain his and their scientific positions on the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Science cannot stand alone or supreme in the creation of public policy. For scientific answers often have impacts on the economic, sociological, psychological, physiological, and political lives of Americans. Impacts that need to be analyzed when considering the answers of science. A costs and benefits analysis that combines science, economic, sociological, psychological, physiological, and political impacts need to be done before any public policy is implemented. To not do so is foolhardy and could lead to calamitous public policy.

Therefore, the American public needs to take with a grain of salt the claims of ‘Science’ or ‘Scientists’, and ‘Scientific Consensus’, or ‘Settled Science” by politicians. Indeed, they should discount the politicians' claims without scientific attribution or the questioning of the scientists. To not do so leads to bad public policy, which may be harmful to America and the American people.

08/23/20 UAPs and UFOs

Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP), a.k.a. Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO) are in the news. And much of the reporting is CRAP (Completely Ridiculous Alien Piffle), as Michael Shermer explains in his Scientific American article. In my article, “Science vs. Science-Fiction”, I explain some of the difficulties of interstellar space travel, and why the Science in Science-Fiction is often not possible. In my article, I point out that ‘The Immensity of Space and Time’, the ‘Energy’ required to do so, and ‘That Which is Seen, and That Which is Unseen’ make the problems of traveling between the stars a daunting task. A task in which no alien civilization would undertake unless there were great benefits derived from undertaking this task.

The explanations of UAPs needs to be undertaken for scientific purpose, not for the purpose of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) as many would wish for. In my article, “Intelligent Life in the Universe”, I point out the many issues in regard to this subject. The current reevaluation of UAPs by the Federal government does not seem to address these issues, but instead only focuses on Earthbound sightings of UAPs. Yet, these issues need to be addressed to provide a foundation for understanding the possible scientific explanations of UAPs. Therefore, let us cut out the CRAP and focus on the scientific explanations of UAPs.

08/21/20 Bringing Us Together

Joe Biden accepted the Democratic Party's nomination to be their candidate for President of the United States, stating that: "It's time for us -- for We the People -- to come together." As I have written upon on my Chirp of “07/24/20 Bring Us Together”, the only togetherness that Joe Biden is interested in is the togetherness of the Progressives and Leftists. How will Joe Biden bring together the people who believe that Abortion is immoral, in the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, in Free Speech Rights for all viewpoints, and In Law and Order, among many other issues that divide our country? He has shown no path that reconciles these differences, but he has shown a path that will alienate many Americans from his governance and our government. Joe Biden has shown that he is uninterested in the viewpoints of moderates and conservative. Indeed, he wants moderates and conservative to be silent and acquiesce to the Progressive and Leftist viewpoints. In the pre-Convention process, he has conceded his policy positions to the Leftists, and rarely gives anything but lip service to moderates while often showing disdain for conservatives. He has shown no propensity to moderate anyone in the Democratic Party, and he will adopt any policy position that pleases, and garners votes, from Leftists. It has become so bad that there are now little policy differences between Progressives and Leftists.

Bringing us together is not possible until Americans decide on the proper role of government, as I have outlined in my article, “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution”. As I have outlined in this article, there are two different interpretations of the Constitution. A difference that leads to different roles of governance in America. Different roles of government that is exemplified by Federal vs. State powers, a large government vs. a small government, an intrusive government vs. a noninterference government, expansive social policies vs. limited social policies, maximal taxation vs. minimal taxation, and majority rule vs. minorities rights.

The Democrats' penchant for wielding government institutions against their foes, the application of laws based on political views, and the smear campaigns and character assassination against those that do not agree with them is not a means of bringing us together. Through lies and deceit, Democrats have weaponized government, criminalized dissent, and launched conspiracy theory after conspiracy theory to wield against anyone who had the audacity to go to work and serve in a duly elected president’s administration.

The Democrats most often attack the messenger while ignoring the message. They do so by the utilization of "The Three D's (Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage) of Modern Political Debate", which has resulted in the “Divisiveness in America”. Add to this their disdain of the Constitutional limitations of their powers, and their propensity to rule rather than lead (as in my article, "To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders"), the legacy of the Democrats’ in the last few decades is of divisiveness. Indeed, the tactics of divisiveness that was on full display at the Democrat National Convention of 2020.

Therefore, it is not possible for Joe Biden and the Democrats to bring us together until they abandon these tactics. An abandonment of these tactics in which they have shown no willingness to undertake.  

08/20/20 Journalism in the 2020 Presidential Election

As I have written about in my article, “Modern Journalism”, today’s journalism has dropped any concerns of impartiality, objectivism, and non-partisanship, and morphed into a wing of the Democrat Party and support of Progressive/Leftists policies. This has become readily apparent, to any intelligent person, in their reporting and commentary on the 2020 Presidential Election.

Most readily apparent is in their treatment of Presidential candidate Joe Biden and the Democrat Party politicians and policy positions. Some examples of this are:

This is counterposed by their reporting and commentary of Donald Trump and Republican Party politicians and policy positions. This is a disservice to the American people, as they are only being provided with one-sided or biased information on the important issues of our time. This leads to the American electorate in making an uninformed decision in their voting and thus making unwise decisions on the future of America. This also tilts the election in favor of Joe Biden and the Democrat Party, a tilting that requires that Republican politicians not only campaign against their Democrat opponents but also to campaign against the reporting and commentary of modern journalism. Such tilting that adds to the divisiveness that beset Americans, which makes it more difficult to reach a bipartisan compromise on the issues facing Americans. A tilting that is harmful to the American Republic and is a disservice by modern journalism to the American electorate.

The American electorate needs to ignore Modern Journalism and consider the “The Real Issues of the 2020 Election”, as I have written in my article of this title. Until the American electorate does this I fear for the future of America.

[i] According to GovTrack, the nonpartisan government transparency watchdog, Harris’s record in the Senate, is in fact, more liberal than that of self-proclaimed democratic socialist Bernie Sanders. Harris was, apparently, the least likely of all Democratic senators to join in any bipartisan bills.

08/19/20 The Real Issues of the 2020 Election

As we are now fully into the Presidential Election of 2020, I would implore all Americans to consider the most important issues facing America. There are only five big issues regarding the Presidential Election of 2020. They are The Coronavirus Pandemic Response, The Economic Recovery, Safety and Security, The Role of Government, and Mental Fitness. Another Issue is the Mental Fitness of Joe Biden to perform the duties and responsibilities of the office of the President. My new article, “The Real Issues of the 2020 Election” examines these issues.

08/18/20 The American Ideals

The American Ideals, as I have written in my article, “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”, are:

The Freedom from oppression by Government and Cancel Culture, and the Freedom to live a safe and secure life as humanly possible. The Liberty to make your own choices about your life so long as these choices do not infringe upon another American’s Liberties. The Equality of Opportunity to pursue your goals of education, career, property, and personal happiness. And Justice that is blind and treats all individuals alike.

Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All are the founding principles of our government. But these principles can only be preserved through eternal vigilance to preserve them by a free and just people. All Americans must dedicate themselves to these principles for all to have Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice for All.

As we enter the heart of the Presidential election of 2020, we need to remember our American Ideals and vote for the President, and other candidates, that best expresses these American Ideals. To not do so is to endanger these American Ideals, which endangers our way of life. Therefore, vote and vote wisely based on these American Ideals.

08/17/20 The Divisions at the Constitutional Convention

As I mentioned in my article, “The Constitutional Founding Fathers Goals” they all knew that they needed a better form of government than The Articles of Confederation. To achieve this goal, they knew that accommodation and compromise were required between themselves, as each founder had their own ideas and concerns about a new government. My new History Article, “The Divisions at the Constitutional Convention” examines these divisions.

Today the main divisions are between Urban, Suburban, and Rural areas of the country, as exemplified by the phrases “The Acela Corridor States”, “The Left Coast States”, and “The Flyover States”. This division is mainly because of constitutional interpretation, as I have written in my article, “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution”. An interpretation of the Constitution in which Liberals/Progressive have different opinions than Conservatives, with Moderates swinging between these two interpretations depending upon the issue.

Until these Constitutional interpretations are resolved in favor of one or the other interpretation, we will continue to see divisions in America. Divisions in which neither side wishes to make an accommodation or compromise. But, perhaps, there should be little accommodation or compromise as each interpretation leads to a different role of government in our society, which impacts the “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” of all Americans. An interpretation and the role of government that needs to be resolved as we go forward in America.

08/16/20 Our National Treasures

National Parks, National Forests, National Wildlife Refuges, and National Monuments are our common national heritage. A heritage that needs to be preserved for future generations. But preserved does not automatically mean pristine. These National Treasures need to be maintained in a thoughtful and wise manner. Maintenance that by its very nature alters the pristine but preserves the nature of these National Treasures.

Due to modern geological technologies, we have determined that many of these National Treasures contain, or are surrounded by, exploitable natural resources. The question is then should we allow this exploitation or forbid or constrain this exploitation to preserve these National Treasures. The Pebble Mine proposal at the Katmai National Park and Preserve (as outlined in the article, “Katmai National Park and Preserve Vs. The Pebble Mine”) is an example of this issue.

My personal belief is that we should forbid this exploitation in National Parks and National Wildlife Refuges and constrain this exploitation around these and other National Treasures. To not do so is to run the risk of damaging these National Treasures, the damage that may not be reversible. Unless there is a national emergency or national imperative that we do so (such as in my Chirp, “07/15/19 Rare Earth Minerals “), we should not do so. National Forests may be the exception to this rule, as there are 155 National Forests containing almost 190 million acres of land. These lands comprise 8.5 percent of the total land area of the United States, an area about the size of Texas. In the case of National Forests, we should carefully and wisely determine if this exploitation should be permitted.

As to the Pebble Mine proposal, I believe that this exploitation should be forbidden. There is no national emergency or national imperative for this mine, and the risk of damage is too great to allow this mine. I would, therefore, encourage all Americans to oppose this mine and to voice their opposition to their elected representatives and President Trump.

08/10/20 You Have Become That Which You Abhorred

Liberals and Progressives look back with pride on what they believe are their accomplishments of the late 20th century; the Civil Rights Movement, the Free Speech Movement, the Sexual Revolution, and their Anti-War Activism. These actions significantly enhanced the American ideals of Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All individuals. But it should be remembered that some of these accomplishments would not have occurred without the (at least tacit) support of many moderates and some conservatives. All of these accomplishments occurred with the American people’s realization of their shortcomings and willingness to change to better achieve these American ideals.

The ideals of non-discrimination based on race, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, veteran status, disability, military service, political affiliation, or other protected status were established. The right to speak your mind without recriminations (“I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”) was promulgated by court decisions. The ability to freely express your sexuality and engage in sexual activities of your choosing was recognized. The Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender community was also recognized. The peaceable opposition to War and the support of Peace became conventional and acceptable activities. And all of this was beneficial to all Americans.

In the 21st century, however, many Liberals became Progressives and some Progressives became Leftists. These newfound Progressives and Leftists have forgotten the ideals that they previously so nobly fought for. Group identity, Social Justice, and Equal Outcomes rather than Equal Opportunities have replaced Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for the individual. Cancel Culture has replaced Free Speech, and suppression of contrary Progressive and Leftists' thoughts and opinions is acceptable. Sexual identity and sexual freedom have morphed into no recognition of any sexual differences. Mob violence, rather than peaceable assembly to petition the government for a redress of grievances, is now permissible. These, and a host of other activities contrary to the American ideals, especially our Bill of Rights ideals, are now acceptable to Progressives and Leftists.

In their zeal to build upon these accomplishments of the late 20th century, Liberals and Progressives in the 21st century are ignoring these American ideals to advance their agendas. They are also ignoring the history of America in striving to obtain these ideals. We have not always met these ideals, but we strived and continue to strive for these ideals. Progressive and Leftists in America today condemn America for not meeting our ideals, and in their condemnation, they wish to overthrow our American ideals and replace them with other (mostly utopian) ideals.

In all of their current actions, today’s Progressives and Leftists have become that which they had previously abhorred. They have forgotten that their original accomplishments were in the striving for the American ideals of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. In its place, they are now striving for a replacement of these ideals with other ideals that have not been proven to be effective in the advancement to the betterment of humanity. The history of mankind has shown that when societies attempt to change dramatically, they most often change for the worse. Let us continue to advance our American ideals in a thoughtful and deliberate manner to make our country better and not worse. I fear that to do otherwise will result in an America that will suffer greatly.

08/09/30 Ode to My Computer and Cell Phone

Ah, my personal computer and cell phone have also become my personal friends and companions. They are nearby when I wake in the morning, nearby when I go to sleep at night, and nearby throughout the day. They are always available when I need them, and they (mostly) never fail me. I can type my most personal thoughts, and they never contradict nor criticizes me (except for my spelling and grammar). They open the whole world for me through the internet, and they allow me to communicate with others through e-mail or text messaging. They have become indispensable in my life.

Trustworthy and reliable, I can always depend upon my computer and cell phone to serve my needs. But they are cold-hearted companions, as they provide no love nor judgment of my person, character, or thoughts. They also provide no comfort when I am in distress nor any praise when I accomplish something.

However, their cold hardness reminds me of the importance of human love and companionship. Although human love and companionship are not always available, reliable, trustworthy, or uncritical, it is much more important than my computer or cell phone. So, I would say to my loves or friends, if I seem more attached to my computer or cell phone, you can be assured that they are secondary to my attachment to you. And so, it should be for all that utilize computers and cell phones. Remember and cherish your loves and friendships and give them much more important than your computer or cell phone.

08/08/20 A Most Terrible Disease

I am not a doctor, I am not a psychologist, and I am not a medical professional. What I am is a son who watched his mother descend into dementia. In my mother’s early eighties, she started to exhibit signs of mental deterioration. Most of her family and friends attributed it to ‘Senior Moments’. My mother was never very sharp, but she was always fully functional. But it soon became apparent that it was more than senior moments, and that she was becoming nonfunctional. Her forgetfulness became constant, and she started making post-it notes to remind herself to do everyday tasks. She would go on long walks and get lost, and she had difficulty making coherent statements. My father was cognizant of this, but my mother refused to listen to him. Indeed, my mother became very defensive and argumentative, something that she never was beforehand. She thought that she was the same as she ever was, and she refused to acknowledge that she was having problems. When her driving became erratic, and as I had Power of Attorney, I checked with the local police about her interactions with them (which were numerous and troubling but nothing illegal), I decided to trick her into a mental acuity test at a local geriatric center. A mental acuity test that she failed. The doctors informed her and me that her driver’s license was immediately suspended, and she would not be allowed to drive. They also suggest that she be limited to activities around the home, and if she wanted to go anywhere else, she needed adult supervision. Food shopping, attending church, visiting friends, financial transactions, and even home cleaning and cooking required adult supervision. It was at this point that my mother started exhibiting signs of paranoia that became worse over time. An incident occurred in which the police took her to the local hospital, and the hospital psychiatric department evaluated her and determined that she was a danger to herself and others. At this point, she was forced into a nursing home, which thankfully was a good nursing home that took excellent care of her for the next several years. It was due to their good care that, thankfully, her paranoia ceased. But they were years in the nursing home in which she descended into total dementia. Ten years after the mental acuity test, she finally died of natural causes. But she had mentally passed away many years before she died.

My mother’s mother also suffered from dementia, as had a sister and brother of hers. I, therefore, expect that I may eventually succumb to dementia. I am not afraid to die, as I have written about in my Article on “Death”. I do, however, apprehend the possibility of dementia. As I believe that my true self is in my mental state and that if I lose my mental state that I am not myself, I apprehend losing my mental state. I also do not wish to burden my family with the emotional strain of watching me slip into dementia. However, as I know that I have no control over this, I will have to just accept what happens.

As many of you are aware, I am not in favor of the Democratic Party policies or politics, as I believe that they are antithetic to American ideals. As such, I am not in favor of Joe Biden’s presidential candidacy. I believe that he is the wrong person, at the wrong time, to lead America. But I had also believed since the start of the Presidential election cycle that he has exhibited the same characteristics as my mother when she started entering into dementia. And I believe that he has gotten worse as the election cycle has progressed. I, therefore, believe that he needs to leave his basement and reveal himself to the American electorate, and to face tough questioning by journalists to determine his fitness to lead America. The Presidential Debates need to start before anyone casts their votes so that the voters can judge for themselves the fitness of Joe Biden to be President. I also believe that he should take an independent mental acuity test to determine if he is indeed entering into or in a dementia state.

The American people need to see and hear for themselves, as well as hear the opinion of medical experts, rather than the assurances of Joe Biden and his campaign staff and supporters that he is mentally fit. So, I would say to Joe Biden, C’mon Man, the American people need to ascertain your mental fitness to hold the office of the Presidency before they cast their votes.

08/07/20 Who Needs Government Suppression When You Have Big Tech Suppression?

Big Tech – Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook, Instagram (a division of Facebook), Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube (a division of Google) – have moved into overdrive on their Standards and Practices divisions as I have outlined in my Chirp, “07/15/30 Ministry of Truth”. This overdrive is a result of the 2020 Presidential election and is directed at anyone who would disagree with their political viewpoint, a viewpoint that has a decidedly progressive, leftists, and Democratic Party orientation. Their suppression of contrary viewpoints has serious consequences on our society. My new article, “Who Needs Government Suppression When You Have Big Tech Suppression?” examines this suppression and its consequences.

08/06/20 The Morality of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki Atomic Bombings

As we remember the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 75 years ago today, we must ponder on the morality of these bombings. But as we ponder, we must do so in its historical context. My new article, “The Morality of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki Atomic Bombings” examines the morality of these atomic bombings in their historical context.

08/05/20 Who Pays for Large Lawsuit Settlements?

I generally do not pay attention to commercials on television. However, I have noticed that there has been an increase of television ads that solicit persons to join class action lawsuits. Mesothelioma, Zantac, Talcum Powder, Boy Scouts, Roundup, etc. are some of the most common solicitations. The question and comment that I often ask myself is ‘Who actually pays for these lawsuits, and who benefits the most from these lawsuits?’. In all of life there are positive and negative consequences for all actions. Therefore, the question is what are the positives and negative of these lawsuits? My new article, “Who Pays for Large Lawsuit Settlements?” discusses this issue.

08/04/20 Systemic Family, Education, and Faith Problems

As I mention in my Chirp, “06/10/20 The Problem is Systemic Liberalisms & Progressivisms”, the problems within America are not Systemic Racism. However, there is a systemic problem in America, a Systemic problem that impacts the Black community more than the other communities. This problem is the Systemic Family, Education, and Faith Problem. The decline of the two-parent family, the failure of public education, and the loss of faith in God and the American ideals have contributed to the decline of America much more than any “Systemic Racism” has. The combination of all three problems is the main cause of the problems in America. My new article, “Systemic Family, Education, and Faith Problem”, examines this problem.

08/03/20 Feminism and the Devaluation of the Male

Equal pay for equal work, the opportunity for advancement based on your skills and abilities, and personal choice in the balance of your personal and professional life are not feminist values, they are human values. And everybody should support them for all people regardless of gender, race, national origin, religion, age, marital status, or disability.

Unfortunately, modern feminism has taken a turn from these values in that they wish to create special privileges based on the female gender. Many of these items I have touched on in other observations and will not be repeated here. But I must state that modern-day feminist has little interest in men or the needs of men. They seem to be only concerned with the professional, emotional, and physical needs of women and seem to be only interested in motherhood if it is single motherhood. Men play little part in their worldview, and the small part they play is considered unimportant. The Feminine Mystique is to be elevated, and the Male Psyche is to be devalued and, in many cases, belittled or mocked.

My extracted article from my Observations, “Feminism and the Devaluation of the Male”, examines this issue in more detail.

08/02/20 A Religion of Peace

Islam is ‘A Religion of Peace’ according to many of its followers, supporters, and proponents. But is it a religion that espouses ‘Natural Rights’ for its followers and other persons? Sadly, this is too often not the case, or has been said:

“Personally, I have nothing against Islam. It's a perfectly good religion ... as long as we forget the suicide bombers, the use of human shields, gays being thrown off buildings, women being stoned to death, little girls being disfigured by acid for wanting an education, women sent to prison for being gang raped, honor killings, soldiers set on fire in cages, genital mutilation and artists being murdered for drawing a cartoon of Mohammed. Other than that, it's a swell religion.”
- Wayne Allyn Root

When someone comments that only a small percentage of Muslims engage in these actions you should remind them that a small percentage of a large number is many Muslims. A large enough number of Muslims that can inflict terrible damage to their society, and to the rest of the world. You can also be fairly certain that the victims of such atrocities feel little comfort that is only a small percentage of Muslims that commit these atrocities.

Pointing to the words in the Koran that espouse peace does not compensate for the actions of many Muslims that are unpeaceful. For it is deeds, not words, that define the true nature of a religion. And all religions need to espouse and practice Natural Rights to be considered peaceful. Unfortunately, Islam is often a religion that practices a subservience or subjugation to the will of Islam and its self-appointed Mullahs. A subservience or subjugation not only for its followers but for all people that reside within a Muslim society. A subservience or subjugation often brought about not by a peaceful conversion to Islam but by the force of arms. Until Muslims can purge themselves of their unpeaceful propensities they pose a danger to other Muslims and to the rest of humanity. A danger that should not be tolerated and, indeed, needs to be eliminated for Islam to truly be ‘A Religion of Peace’.

08/01/20 The Rev. Mark Dawson

Having pondered and given much thought, as well as writing articles on “Religion“, I now believe that I am deserving of the title of ‘Reverend,’ as I am as least as worthy of the title as the Rev. Al Sharpton. Having the same theological qualifications as the Rev. Al Sharpton (in both cases – none), I believe I am as deserving of the title “Reverend’ title as Al Sharpton claims. The difference between the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Rev. Mark Dawson is that Rev. Sharpton knows how to use religion to achieve his goals, while the Rev. Dawson knows how to utilize religion to understand the righteousness of goals.

The righteousness of those that reserve the determination of moral rightness to themselves or like-minded persons are themselves immoral, as they are intolerant of any moral convictions or actions that are contrary to their own. As they often believe they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior they are, of course, always correct. We can only say with confidence that the best moral righteousness is in the Ten Commandments of the Bible, as examined in my article, “The Ten Commandments”. As a believer of the righteousness of the Ten Commandments, and one who has pondered these commandments and tried to live my life by them, I believe I am entitled to preach upon them. As such, the title of ‘Reverend” is an appropriate mantle for myself.

07/30/20 The Evasion of Duties and Responsibilities

Before entering an elected or appointed office in the Federal government, each person must take an Oath of Office. An Oath of Office that not only binds them to their duties but impresses upon them a responsibility to “… defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”. My new article, “The Evasion of Duties and Responsibilities” examines how many elected and appointed officials are shirking their responsibilities to the Constitution.

07/29/20 A Star Chamber

A Star Chamber was a former English court that became notorious for its arbitrary methods and severe punishments. With the witness testimony of Attorney General William Barr at yesterday’s House Judiciary Committee hearing, we witnessed a Star Chamber in action.

The House Democrats were not interested in taking testimony, but only making statements and asking rhetorical questions. Whenever Attorney General Barr attempted to respond to their statements or questions, they cut him off with the phrase “reclaim my time”, and then gaveled down his response. Consequently, this was not testimony, but harassment and haranguing of a witness as suitable to a Star Chamber. No witness to any House or Senate hearings should be cut off from responding to statements and questions. To not allow a witness to respond is to allow for Congresspersons to make assertions, allegations, and accusations without veracity, and to not hear contrary evidence or a reasonable rebuttal. This is not the way for Congress to gather the facts and determine the truth, but it is a way for political grandstanding. Political grandstanding is to be expected outside of hearings, but within a Congressional hearing, the gathering of the facts and the determination of the truths is the purpose of a hearing.

To behave in such a way is to debase the purpose of a hearing, and indeed, it debases Congress. In addition, what Executive Officer would want to testify under such circumstances, and what other persons would want to testify or serve their government under such circumstances. The House needs to change their rules, and abide by these changed rules, that a witness gets to respond, without interruption, and within a reasonable time limit, to any statement or question from a House member. It is not only a good policy to do so, but it is also good decorum to do so. If the witness is not afforded this decorum, then it is fitting for them to refuse to give testimony or to end the questioning and leave the committee hearing.

Thank goodness the House of Representatives Star Chamber cannot melt out severe punishments, but the House Democrats need to be punished for turning the House into a Star Chamber.

07/28/20 Campaign Financing and Independent Expenditures

The issues and concerns of Campaign Financing and Independent Expenditures on election campaigns are complex, entwined, and have far-reaching effects on our elections and our democracy. My new Article “Campaign Financing and Independent Expenditures” examines these issues and concerns.

07/26/30 The Infirmities of Old Age

As I have entered into my senior years, I have experienced many of the Infirmities of old age. Digestive problems and excessive flatulence, increased tiredness and nap time, more frequent urination and defecation, and back and joint aches and pains have entered my life. The problems of impairment of seeing, hearing, and smell, hand/foot coordination, reduced heart and lung functionality, along with the difficulties of performing manual labor and more perceived dangers of automobile driving and navigation, are all symptoms of getting older. Most disconcerting are those occurrences of forgetfulness and mental lapses (i.e., Senior Moments). All people have some or most of these infirmities as they get older, but as the saying goes, ‘Getting old is better than the alternative of death’. But death will come upon me as I have written about in the ”Death” section of my “Life“ Observation.

I write this Chirp not as a complaint but as a warning to others getting older, and a plea for the younger in the understanding of these infirmities, as they have not yet experienced these problems. Understanding by people of all ages as to the Infirmities of Old Age can lead to more kindness to those that suffer these infirmities at any age. Therefore, all should be more kind, polite, and respectful to people of all ages that suffer from infirmities, as sometime in your life, you will suffer infirmities that you will be grateful for the understanding of others.

07/25/20 The Free Exercise of Our Rights

We Americans treasure our rights and often invoke them, especially those rights incorporated into the Bill of Rights and the 14th Amendments to the Constitution. However, what good are rights if you cannot exercise them? And by ‘cannot exercise them,’ I mean the fear of exercising them. "The Three D's (Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage) of Modern Political Debate" utilized to smear a person, and the “Cancel Culture” utilized to ruin a person, are the fears that effectively prohibit the free exercise of our rights. The free exercise of our rights requires freedom from fear of intimidation and harm in exercising our rights for these rights to exist. Not only the freedom of fear of governmental actions, but the freedom of fear from individuals, groups, and entities actions.

As the Declaration of Independence has stated:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

No person in America should be afraid to exercise their self-evident unalienable rights, especially those rights enumerated in the Constitution. If you are afraid to exercise your rights, and because of that fear you do not exercise your rights, then you do not have these rights.

Alas, this is not the case today. The governmental actions of the Coronavirus lockdowns that are applied unequally and arbitrarily, the possibility of fines and/or incarceration for exercising your rights to peaceable assembly, the criminal prosecutions (a.k.a. persecutions) of the right to bear arms for the protection of yourself, your family, and your property, the restrictions on religious activities outside of your home or place of worship, and the inactions of many government officials to protect your life, liberty, and property have demonstrated the capriciousness of these rights in the eyes of many government officials.

More insidious is the actions of individuals, groups, and entities against those who would exercise their rights. The mob actions against individuals and businesses, and the Cancel Culture against individuals and businesses who would disagree with the mob sentiments, is meant to install fear and to silence those who would disagree with the mob. It is also done to extort tacit approval and/or financial support for the mob's actions. And all of this is to the detriment of a person exercising their rights, and therefore a violation of their rights.

Consequently, these fears of exercising your rights are being utilized to make Americans subservient to the will of the government or to the mob. This subservience is antithetical to the principles of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution and is an assault on our natural rights. All freedom-loving Americans must stand up for their rights, or as has been said:

“THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value.”
- Thomas Paine in The Crisis

It is past time that Americans put aside our fears and stand up for our rights. Otherwise, we shall become a subjugated or subservient people that can be directed or controlled by the government or the mob. If we do not stand up for our rights now, it may result in another American Revolution to restore our “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All“.

07/24/20 Bring Us Together

The only togetherness that Joe Biden is interested in is the togetherness of the Progressives and Leftists. Joe Biden has shown that he is uninterested in the viewpoints of moderates and conservative. Indeed, he wants moderates and conservative to be silent and acquiesce to the Progressive and Leftist viewpoints. In the pre-General Election process, he has conceded his policy positions to the Leftists, and rarely gives anything but lip service to moderates while often showing disdain for conservatives. He has shown no propensity to moderate anyone in the Democratic Party, and he will adopt any policy position that pleases, and garners votes, from Leftists. It has become so bad that there are now little policy differences between Progressives and Leftists.

Despite his media advertising to the contrary, he will not bring us together, but he will divide America between Progressives/Leftists and all other Americans. And all the other Americans represent approximately two-thirds of the population. If he should win the Presidency, the only means he can implement his agenda is by rulership, as I have written about in my article, “To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders”.

How will Joe Biden bring together the people who believe that Abortion is immoral, in the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, and In Law and Order, amongst many other issues that divide our country? He has shown no path that reconciles these differences, but he has shown a path that will alienate many Americans from his governance and our government.

The hubris of Joe Biden and the Progressives and Leftist that believes that they can direct or control a free people is astounding. Only a subjugated or subservient people can be directed or controlled. The American people are neither subjugated nor subservient, and they will defend their Freedoms and Liberties if they are pushed too far.

When deciding on how to vote, you should put aside the rhetoric of the candidates and focus on the policy positions of the candidates. Do not fall for lofty words and slogans as they are often empty words and empty slogans. You should adjudge a candidate much more on their deeds rather than their words.  You should also decide on how to vote on what policy positions that you want America to implement, and on which candidate best espouses the ideals of America of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.

07/23/20 Priesthoods with Acolytes

Much public policy and laws are formulated by the scholarship of Universities or Think Tanks. Think Tanks often have a perspective or policy position on their areas of interest, while in the past, Universities often had diverse viewpoints. These diverse viewpoints of Universities were instituted by the hiring of professors of different viewpoints and opinions, allowing them to research, discuss, dialog, and debate each other to uncover the facts and, hopefully, discover some truths.

However, this diversity has disappeared in the last several decades, especially in the Social Sciences. The process of hiring and bestowing tenure on professors has morphed into a lack of diversity. Often a committee of the current professors in the department determines who will be hired and tenured. Many of these committees are composed of like-minded professors who hire like-minded academics. Like-minded, in the social sciences, often means a progressive or leftist viewpoint. After many decades of hiring like-minded academics, you have a department of like-minded professors that has no diversity of viewpoints and opinions. As professors believe that they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior they are, of course, always correct in hiring like-minded persons and rejecting any academic who does not share their viewpoints or opinions.

This situation is made worse by the knowledge that it exists, and many non-like-minded academics do not apply for a professorship but search out career opportunities outside of the University. It also means that the students that they are teaching are receiving a like-minded education. A like-minded education that does not enrich a student’s knowledge or critical thinking abilities but, indeed, leads to the conformity of thought on a Progressive or Leftist basis. This leads to having a Priesthood with Acolytes instead of professors with students who learn critical thinking skills with “Reasoning”.

It also leads to Scholars testifying on public policy and legislation, which are of one viewpoint – the Progressive/Leftists viewpoint. A viewpoint that often leads to inappropriate or impracticable laws or regulations that impact all Americans. Therefore, whenever a politician defers too or cites academics or scholars to support their policy positions, you can most often be assured that they are supporting a Progressive or Leftist policy position, and many times the politician is an acolyte.

07/22/20 Politics as a Career Path

Our Founding Fathers envisioned a republic in which our representatives would come from the common people who were successful in life. These persons would set aside a portion of there life to serve the public and then retire back to their private lives. Unfortunately, this vision never materialized in real life. Almost from the beginning of our government, many people decided to make elected public service a career goal. This practice has accelerated in our republic so as that most of our elected politicians are career politicians.

Given the time, effort, and monies required to run for public office, much of a politician’s life is spent on electioneering rather than legislation. Also, many legislative decisions are based on reelection considerations rather than the merits of the legislation. This has contributed to the gridlock and recriminations in politics rather than solving the problems of America. This has also led to the cronyism and coziness of special interest groups who support elected politicians in the hopes and expectations of influencing government actions. Politics as a career path also has the problems of the career politician not directly experiencing the issues and concerns of ordinary Americans in their daily lives. While a politician may be able to hear the concerns of their constituents, this is no substitute for directly experiencing these concerns.

Term limits have been proposed as a solution to this problem. Much has been said on the pros and cons of restricting the terms of an office held by elected officials. Many of the arguments for term limits are counterbalanced by arguments against term limits. This balancing is not dispositive for or against term limits, and I need not reiterate these arguments as much more knowledgeable, and experienced people have done this better than I could. I will, however, give my opinion. Given the current state of politics in the United States, I believe that term limits are necessary. We have, for over two hundred years, been without term limits. This had led to career politicians that are more interested in retaining or advancing in elected office than in solving the issues facing America. And this has led to gridlock and obstructionism in our legislative process.

However, I have a slightly different approach to term limits then what has been discussed, as I would have limitations of successive term limits. I would support a Constitutional amendment that would limit a member of the House of Representatives from holding office for no more than seven consecutive terms of two years (a total of 14 years). I would limit a member of the Senate from holding office for no more than three consecutive terms of six years (a total of 18 years). After those limits have been met, the elected official would have to stand down and not run for reelection for the office they hold. After they have been out of the office for two years, they could run for election for the same office. They could also immediately run for election to a different office, or they could serve as an appointed official in the government.

While the solution of term limits is not an impediment for career politicians, the lack of term limits is an incentive for career politicians. Given that we have been without term limits for over two hundred years, it may be time to try the alternative of term limits to alleviate some of the problems of having career politicians.

07/21/20 The Elites

If you gather a thousand Ivy League or other top-tiered university graduates and a thousand successful small farmers, you will find much more intelligence and wisdom amongst the farmers than the graduates. This can also be said of any Progressive group in comparison to any other grouping of Americans. It is most definitely true for any Leftists groups, as it is impossible to find any intelligence and wisdom amongst any Leftists. As one of my “Truisms” states:

"True Wisdom Most Often Comes from Bitter Experience... Considered!"
 - Mark Dawson

Most Ivy League or other top-tiered university graduates have not encountered many bitter experiences in their lives, while most small farmers encounter much bitter experience throughout their lives. And the farmers must consider these bitter experiences to minimize future bitterness in their lives. This is a major difference between living a privileged life and living a working-class life. While most Ivy League or other top-tiered university graduates do work hard, they work in an environment that affords them opportunities and advancement that are not available to most people. As such, they often believe that their knowledge and experience give them special wisdom that makes them better than most people. They believe that they are elite as they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior that they are consequently always correct. They have forgotten the wisdom of:

"Doubt a little of your own infallibility."
 - Benjamin Franklin

Or as the great Nobel laureate economist and philosopher Friedrich Hayek often talked about elites and their "pretense of knowledge." These are people who believe that they have the ability and knowledge to organize society in a way better than people left to their own devices -- what Hayek called the fatal conceit. Their vision requires the use of the coercive powers of government to be effectuated.

The attitudes expressed by the Democratic Party leaders show that they are not the party that trusts the people, but the party that believes in the intellectual and cultural elites’ abilities. Their solutions to the issues and concerns of most Americans would require the coercive powers of government to be effectual. An attitude that demonstrates that they believe that they have an elite ability and knowledge to organize society in a better way. They often cloak themselves in moral righteousness and intellectual superiority to achieve their goals. Consequently, they do not trust Americans to make their own choices, and they would limit the Freedoms and Liberties of Americans to make their own choices to those choices that they approve.

The Democratic Party leaders have forgotten that no side is morally right nor intellectually superior. They will not concede that all sides of an issue have something to contribute to the problems facing America. They will not incorporate any ideas into their policies that are not their idea, and they believe that they can impose their ideas on Americans, as stated in my Article, "To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders". The hubris of the Democrat Party leaders that think that they can direct or control a free people is astounding. Only a subjugated or subservient people can be directed or controlled.

07/20/20 Ah, Youth

Approximately 4 million persons in the United States turned eighteen years of age in the year 2018. In 2018 the Armed Forces of the United States saw 170,900 people enlist. Therefore, whenever you hear someone say ‘If you are old enough to go to war, then you are old enough to drink or vote” you should remember that 4 million persons are asking for the benefits of the sacrifices of 170,900 people.

Over the last several decades, we have seen the educational achievements of our young people precipitously decline. Over the last several decades, we have also seen the push for more younger people to vote. It seems quite nonsensical that we should want more voters who are less educated to vote. Unless, of course, you wish to garner the votes of the uneducated.

We know as a scientific fact that the human brain does not fully develop until about 22 to 24 years of age, and the last part of the brain to develop is the cerebral cortex. The cerebral cortex is responsible for most "higher-order" or intellectual brain functions such as thinking, reasoning, judging, planning, voluntary movement, and overall behavior. These are the traits that we want of an intelligent voter, but these are the traits that are not fully developed in the brain at this younger age. Consequently, with the push to garner the votes of the young, this is a push that garners more votes of those not physiologically capable of casting an intelligent vote. It seems quite nonsensical that we should want more voters who are less intelligently capable of voting. Unless, of course, you wish to garner the votes of the intellectually incapable.

Much of the social activism we have seen is by young people. Most of the mob violence that we have recently seen has been instigated and carried out by young persons. Young people whose educational achievements are in decline, and whose brains are physiologically immature. Many of these young people have also exhibited the propensities as I have Chirped about in, “08/14/19 The Intellectual Yet Idiot and Skin In The Game”. Given the preceding, the question is why should we pay much heed to these young people, and why should we tolerate their uncivil and sometimes criminal actions? Only a fool pays attention to fools. Let us not be foolish!

07/19/20 True Wisdom

As I have stated in my “Pearls of Wisdom “ section "A Wise Person":

“Wisdom is the ability to apply your knowledge, your experience, your reasoning, and your common sense into your words and deeds. And wisdom is also the ability to listen to others who are intelligent and wise and incorporate their intelligence and wisdom into your own.”

and

“… you may also discover that wisdom can be a burden. A burden because you will recognize your own and society's shortcomings. You will no longer accept excuses for yourself and others but will recognize the reasons for what is happening in your life and society. This wisdom will help you to better understand how to improve your own life and society if you should decide to apply this wisdom. And applying this wisdom will help set you free to experience life to its fullest. You should also remember the following quote as you obtain wisdom:”

Man is always prey to his truths. Once he has admitted them,
he cannot free himself from them.
 - Albert Camus

We should all remember what true wisdom is, and we should all strive to obtain wisdom as well as Knowledge, “Reasoning”, Skills, and Abilities.

07/18/20 Reasons and Excuses

Most people have conflated reasons and excuses, but they are much different and should be so thought of. Reasons are a rational motive for a belief or action, while Excuses are a defense of some behavior or some failure to keep a promise. Most people think that they have good reasons for doing or not doing something, but in most cases, their reasons are, in actuality, an excuse to do or not do something. As I have stated in my “Pearls of Wisdom “, "Do Not Accept Excuses but be Acceptable of Reasons":

“Many people conflate excuses and reasons, but they are not the same. Excuses are usually justifications for words or deeds, while reasons are usually explanations for words or deeds. Excuses are generally emotionally based, while reasons are generally intellectually based. Excuses are easy to come by, but reasoning requires the effort of intelligent thinking.

Excuses are generally utilized to explain bad behavior or poor decisions. People can usually determine when you are making a poor excuse, or when you have a good reason. Usually, excuses are not accepted by others for your bad behavior or poor decisions, but usually good reasons are accepted. Reasons also make it easier for people to understand your words and deeds and perhaps forgive your words and deeds if they have had negative repercussions.

You should apply this pearl to not only to another's words and deeds but to your own words and deeds. Think about what you are contemplating doing or saying, or what you have already done or said, and separate the excuses from the reasons. If you do this, you will have a better understanding of yourself, and it will probably lead to your making better decisions in the future.”

07/17/20 Essential and Non-Essential Spending

During the Coronavirus Pandemic shutdowns, Governors and Mayors were quick to declare what governmental services and private businesses were considered essential and non-essential. Those businesses and governmental agencies that were determined non-essential had to stop operations, while essential business and governmental agencies had to make many changes and take precautions to continue to operate. The Governors' and Mayors' determinations of essential and non-essential had economic impacts on all businesses and governmental agencies. Business and individual incomes declined, and because of these declines, the tax revenues from businesses and individuals decreased, while more and different governmental expenditures increased to combat the Coronavirus Pandemic.

The Coronavirus Pandemic recovery will require both businesses and governments to reallocate their spending to meet the demands of the precautions of social contacting. These businesses and Governors and Mayors will need to determine what spending in their budgets is essential or non-essential and adjust their budgets accordingly. There need to be large increases in cleaning and disinfection services as well as reasonable and prudent precautions for both employees and people who occupy and visit these business and government facilities.

I have no doubt of the business leaders to make these adjustments as they have often done this in the past. However, I have serious doubts about government leaders to make these adjustments, as they very rarely have made adjustments in the past, but instead relied on increased tax revenues and increased spending. It is these adjustments by the government that is the focus of this Chirp.

Raising taxes to increase tax revenues to fund these increased costs is not a viable option, as raising taxes during an economic recovery depresses the economic recovery. It also often results in fewer taxes being collected as people adjust their behavior to reduce their tax burden. It will require that governmental leaders differentiate between essential and non-essential government services and increase the funding for essential services while decreasing or defunding non-essential government services. Something which politicians are loath to do as they are reluctant to make hard choices.

For a State or Local government to reallocate funding means that some people will be negatively impacted, while other people will have little or increased positive impacts. Politicians are all in favor of having enhanced positive impacts but are opposed to negative impacts. There is the specter of their not being reelected by making these choices, and to most politicians, their reelection is of primary importance.

As a result, many State and Local politicians, and their supporters and special interest groups, have started to call on more Federal funding to assist the State and Local governments to meet their funding for the Coronavirus Pandemic recovery. However, increase Federal funding requires increased Federal taxes or Federal deficit spending, both of which have a negative impact on the economy. By calling for increased Federal funding, the State and Local governments are also shifting the responsibilities and tax burdens to the taxpayers of other States or Localities, with the other States or Localities taxpayers having no say in the election of the politicians that would spend their taxes (i.e., No Taxation Without Representation).

I am opposed to increased Federal funding unless and until the State or Local governments take the actions to differentiate between essential and non-essential government services and increase the funding for essential services while decreasing or defunding non-essential government services. This, of course, will result in political gamesmanship as hard choices will have to be made. To this is say, ‘Let the Games Begin’ and ‘Let the Chips Fall Where They May’.

07/16/20 The Different Sides of the Same Coin

I have posted two new Articles that discuss “A Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution”, and “The Rule of Law or the Rule of Lawyers”. These two articles are the different sides of the same coin – the coin of Constitutional interpretation.

In the Republican or Democrat Constitution article, I do not mean a Republican Party or a Democratic Party Constitution, but a Republic or a Democratic political theory of the Constitution. A Political Theory pronounced in the Declaration of Independence and implemented in The Constitution of the United States. The differences between a Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution Political Theory are illuminated in this article.

In the Rule of Lawyers article, I have written about the torturous and convoluted reasoning in reaching decisions on the Constitutionality of a Law. About how Judges and Lawyers often use their own proclivities on as to how to interpret the Law and the Constitution. Their interpretations are often driven by the legal theories of Judicial Interpretation, of which two major legal theories, Living Constitution and Originalism, are at opposition perspectives of Judicial Interpretations of the Constitution.

In the Presidential election of 2020, we have perhaps the most starkly different candidates that reflect these two different Political Theories. The electorate of the United States will not only be deciding on a candidate but also be deciding on our future form of governance. A consequential decision that we have not faced since the election of Abraham Lincoln in 1860. We will be deciding on whether we want the Rule of Law or the Rule of Lawyers, and a Republican Constitution or a Democratic Constitution.

07/15/30 Ministry of Truth

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Wikipedia, TED Talks, Google, and a gaggle of other social media websites have all established standards departments. The violations of their standards will run you afoul with them, and your account will be suspended, or your posts removed, or at the very least, your posts will be tagged as factually incorrect or untruthful. These standards used to be for violations of derogatory language, pornography, and incitement to violence, but they have morphed into other matters. Most recently, they have morphed into fact-checking and truth-telling. However, hard facts are easy to check, while many other facts are debatable. The truth, however, is highly subject to interpretation and is often disputable. Consequently, these standards departments have become arbiters of facts and truths with such arbitration being subjective to and at the capriciousness of the arbitrators. They also tend to be based on the political persuasions of the arbiters, which is most often Progressive and Leftists.

This is reminiscent of George Orwell's 1949 futuristic dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four:

The Ministries of Love, Peace, Plenty, and Truth are ministries in George Orwell's 1949 futuristic dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, set in Oceania. Despite the name, no actual "ministers" are mentioned in the book, and all public attention is focused on the idealized figurehead Big Brother.

The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture, and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation. These contradictions are not accidental, nor do they result from ordinary hypocrisy: they are deliberate exercises in doublethink.

The Ministry of Truth (Newspeak: Minitrue) is the ministry of propaganda. As with the other ministries in the novel, the name Ministry of Truth is a misnomer because, in reality, it serves the opposite: it is responsible for any necessary falsification of historical events. However, like the other ministries, the name is also apt because it decides what "truth" is in Oceania.

As well as administering "truth", the ministry spreads a new language amongst the populace called Newspeak, in which, for example, "truth" is understood to mean statements like 2 + 2 = 5 when the situation warrants. In keeping with the concept of doublethink, the ministry is thus aptly named in that it creates/manufactures "truth" in the Newspeak sense of the word. The book describes the doctoring of historical records to show a government-approved version of events.

- From the Wikipedia Article “Ministries of Nineteen Eighty-Four

At the time that this book was written, the concern was that the government would become corrupt, coercive, and oppressive to the people. It was not envisioned that it would be large companies that would fill this role. All of these activities are an infringement on the Free Speech rights of the people. Not only have large companies engaged in these activities, but the news media seems to be following suit. Many “facts’ and much “truth” are disputable and debatable, and all reasonable voices must be heard to resolve the facts and truths. A consensus is not a resolution, as most consensus has been overturned as new information is obtained. To stifle facts and truths that you disagree with is injurious to the progress of humanity, and it will always result in the detriment to people, society, government, and the beneficial advancement of humankind.

07/14/20 Public Polling

With the increase of public polling in this Presidential election I would like to reiterate some pithy quotes on public polling:

“A wise man makes his own decisions; an ignorant man follows public opinion.”
- Chinese proverb

"Just as it would be madness to settle on medical treatment for the body of a person by taking an opinion poll of the neighbors, so it is irrational to prescribe for the body politic by polling the opinions of the people at large."
- Plato

"A public-opinion poll is no substitute for thought."
- Warren Buffett

"I utilize polls to determine how much convincing I need to do."
-
Ronald Reagan

"I did not enter the labor Party forty-seven years ago to have our manifesto written by Dr. Mori, Dr. Gallup and Mr. Harris."
- Tony Benn

"If you are guided by opinion polls, you are not practicing leadership -- you are practicing followership."
- Margaret Thatcher

For more of my thoughts on polling, I would direct you to the section “Political Polling” in my “Politics” Observation.

07/13/20 Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned by Laura Hollis is an article that examines the lessons of current events that teach us about what we're facing in our future. These lessons are:

    1. Our governments are shockingly weak.
    2. Never give up your Second Amendment rights.
    3. The media is relentlessly biased and deceitful.
    4. No one can survive the ideological purity tests that are being administered.
    5. Ah, Marxism! The only example of perfect diversity.
    6. The highest praise for Marxism comes from those who have never lived under it.
    7. Yes, it can happen here.
    8. It isn't about President Donald Trump.

As we approach the November election and beyond, it is vital that we understand these lessons to help us make decisions about the future of America.

07/12/20 My Pithy Statements

As I have mentioned in my Chirp of, “06/23/20 Quotes of Wisdom,” one of my “Truisms” is:

“The world is full of quotes, but not so many quotes of wisdom.”
- Mark Dawson

I have also composed a few pity statements that I utilize when discussing a topic.

“Be careful in what you say to people, as most people are not interested in hearing the facts or truth, they are only interested in hearing their own opinions reinforced.”
 - Mark Dawson

"I refuse to talk before I have thought."
- Mark Dawson

"I am trying to get you to think, but all you seem to want to do is argue."
 - Mark Dawson

"I'd rather be factually correct than politically correct."
- Mark Dawson

"I’d rather live with the rashness of speech than with the foolhardiness of action."
- Mark Dawson

"It always helps to know where you are going so that you may plan on how to get there."
 - Mark Dawson

"Just because you "believe" something to be true does not mean that you "know" something is true, and just because someone says something is true doesn’t make it true."  
- Mark Dawson

“Without knowing the details, it is impossible to know the devils.”
- Mark Dawson

If you keep these pithy statements in your arsenal, then you may have a more rational discussion.

07/11/20 According to Whom?

Sexist, Intolerant, Xenophobic, Homophobic, Islamophobic, Racist, Bigoted (SIXHIRB) are all pejorative terms. Most of these terms, if not all, are directed at conservatives by progressives and leftists. But who gets to determine if a term is applicable to a person? Apparently, it is a progressive or leftists who decides if one (or more) of these terms is applicable to a person. The criteria that they seem to utilize is that the definition of being a sexist, intolerant, xenophobic, homophobic, Islamophobic, racist, or bigoted person is someone who disagrees with the Progressive and Leftists policy positions on their issues and concerns. As Progressives and Leftists believe that they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior, then their definitions must be correct.

Under this definition, I am a proud SIXHIRB person, and I shall remain so, as I am opposed to most of the Progressive and all the Leftists policy positions.

07/10/20 Distance Makes the Heart Grow Progressive

As the age-old adage states – “Distance makes the heart grow fonder”, so too does the further you are from the actual problems in America, the more Progressive or Leftists you become. The economic and social gap between the people experiencing the problems, and the Progressive and Leftists who advocate and agitate for change to solve these problems, is quite a distance. A distance that separates them from the consequences of the change that they advocate. Or, as has been said:

“In California, it became hip for wealthy leftists to promote socialism from their Malibu, Menlo Park or Mill Valley enclaves -- while still living as privileged capitalists. Meanwhile, it proved nearly impossible for the middle classes of Stockton and Bakersfield to cope with the reality of crushing taxes and terrible social services.”
- Victor Davis Hanson

To which I might add that these Progressive policies have done very little to solve the problems in lower-class America.

When we observe the mobs that currently plague America, a deeper look into the participants of these mobs highlights this distance. While some of the mobs have been composed of lower-class individuals, many of these mob participants have come from the upper-class and their family members. Both of these groups of mob participants, in their actions of rioting, looting, arson, and destruction, are not personally impacted by their actions, but they do have a negative impact on the lower- and middle-class individuals in the immediate surroundings of the mob. Most of these mobs feel that they are agitating for a good; however, these mobs have forgotten that:

“It is much more important to do good than to feel good.”
- Mark Dawson

and

"Well done is better than well said."
  - Benjamin Franklin

Rioting, looting, arson, and destruction are not doing good, even for a worthy goal, for the ends do not justify the means. Financial or verbal support for those that engage in such actions may make you feel good, but they rarely accomplish any actual good and quite often end up in doing harm.

If you feel good without doing good, you are simply engaging in a narcissistic emotion. As an article in Psychology Today explains, “Why Is Doing Good More Important Than Feeling Good?” also has an impact on our well-being.

When we read or listen to a Progressive or Leftist agitating for change, we should keep in mind how distant they are from the consequence of the change. The more distant they are from the change, the warier we should be of the change they advocate, as the changes they advocate will often not directly impact them.

07/09/20 The Party of Divisiveness

American is more divisive today than it has been for several decades. The question of the reasons for this divisiveness is important to be answered to mend this divide. Many have blamed President Trump and Republican leaders for this divisiveness, while many have blamed the Democrat party leaders for this divisiveness. And they both share in this blame. But the underlying reasons for this divisiveness are the people who believe in “The Biggest Falsehoods in America”, and those who espouse these falsehoods.

When you believe something to be true, you act upon these beliefs. If these beliefs are unfounded, then you will take foolhardy actions. As to your beliefs, you should always remember one of my “Truisms”:

"Just because you "believe" something to be true does not mean that you "know" something is true, and just because someone says something is true doesn’t make it true."   
- Mark Dawson

We no longer discuss issues and concerns within America based on “Reasoning” and with proper “Dialog & Debate”, but instead argue for the purposes of political gamesmanship and political power. We no longer try to persuade Americans as to our opinions but try to impose our opinions on Americans. Name-calling, pejoratives, and sloganeering are substituted for polite and respectful speech. Compromising and bilateralism are considered a sign of weakness and are not tolerated within the political sphere. Legislation is stalled or discarded if it does not implement one side or the other policy positions. And most importantly, we have forgotten the meaning of Free Speech in America. This is the root cause of divisiveness in America.

While President Trump and Republican leaders have engaged in these activities, it is the Democrat party leaders that have utilized this as a strategy and tactic for the purposes of political gain, as I have noted in several of my Chirps. The Democrat Party has exhibited that no compromise or bipartisanship is no be allowed, and their attitude toward legislation appears to be that if it does contain all that they want, then the legislation is not to be considered and scuttled. It is also true that the modern Democrat Party is structured on identity politics, and the pitting of one group against another to win votes and achieve political power. Victimhood is also part and parcel of the Democrat Party divisiveness strategy. The Democrat Party has forgotten the ideals and meaning of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” in America, and have seen to embrace a redefinition of our ideals as I have Chirped on, “07/04/30 The Bill of Rights as Envisioned by Progressives and Leftists”.

Every election has been described as the most important election of our time. This is usually just rhetoric, but unfortunately, in the next election, this is proving to be true based on today’s divisiveness. We stand at a fork in United States history. Will we preserve our ideals of Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice for All, or will we redefine these ideals to embrace the Democrat Party progressive/leftists envisionment of these ideals. An envisionment, that if implemented, will have enormous repercussions in and on America.

07/08/20 The Natural Right to Defend Yourself

Everybody has a natural right to defend their person, their family, and their property. This is one of the main reasons that the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was adopted. In today’s society, we expect that the primary means of defense is by law enforcement through police actions. However, if the police are delayed, or fail to protect, your person, family, and your property, you have the Natural Right to defend yourself through force of arms. These defensive measure does not permit you to be an aggressor, but it does allow you to respond to threats to your person, family, and property.

Whether the threat comes through criminal activities, riots, looting, or arson, you have the Natural Right of the defense of arms.

07/07/20 A Conversation and A Dialog

In today’s tumultuous times, many people are calling for a conversation or dialog on the problems that beset America. These calls often ring hollow as the people that are calling for this rarely wish to engage with anyone who would disagree with them. The reason for this is encapsulated in two of my “Truisms”:

“Be careful in what you say to people, as most people are not interested in hearing the facts or truth, they are only interested in hearing their own opinions reinforced.”
  - Mark Dawson

Most people don't really think about what they think about. They bring their own viewpoints and prejudices to their thinking to reinforce what they already believe. They rarely consider alternate viewpoints, and almost never consider both the negative and positive consequences of what they think or believe. And it is the very rare person who looks for the unintended consequences of what they think or believe.”
- Mark Dawson

Often they do not consider that the impacts of the changes they are advocating, as outlined in my Articles “Change and/or New” and the impacts of “The Law of Unintended Consequences”, as well as another of my Truisms:

“You cannot implement a wrong social policy the right way. For if it is a wrong social policy it will always fail. While the goals of a social policy may be noble the details of its implementation will determine if the goal can be reached (i.e., the devil is in the details).”
  - Mark Dawson

A wrong social policy can be defined as one that infringes on the “Human Rights“ of another. When conversing or dialoguing these human rights violations rarely enter the conversion or dialog, and when they do address Human Rights it is usually only on one side of the double-entry ledger as in another of my Truisms:

"Life is like a double-entry ledger. For everything that happens there are both positives and negatives, especially for anything that you say or do."
- Mark Dawson

It is not possible to implement the Human Rights of one person by restricting the Human Rights of another person. And these Human Rights restrictions are often the devil in the details.

Just as often, those people calling for a conversation or dialog are not interested in “Reasoning” nor proper “Dialog & Debate”. Facts and figures are utilized in these conversations or dialogs without any veracity or skepticism as to their accuracy, or too their possible misinterpretation. They simply wish to express their facts and opinions without refutation and to have their social policy implemented without questioning.

Often, when confronted with refutation, they resort to pejoratives or negative adjectives for the person refuting their opinion. Those that utilize pejoratives or negative adjectives during a conversation or dialog are bereft of intelligence and reasoning. They are to be pitied, but they should not be listened too, as they are contributing nothing to the conversation or dialog but unreasoned emotional appeals or anger. This is not the proper way to have a conversation or dialog, but it is the best way to end a conversation or dialog.

Finally, conversation or dialog is important to have, but only as a prelude to actions. Without action, you have nothing but words that disappear into the ether. A disappearance that does nothing to solve the problems in America.

07/06/20 Perfection

"Perfection is reserved for God; humans should strive to do their best."
  - Mark Dawson

This pity statement not only applies to a person but also applies to society. For no society is perfect, and all societies should strive to do better. It is also not wise to judge a person or society based on perfection, as perfection is an ideal, an ideal that is to be strived for but is unattainable as it is reserved to God.

If you judge people or a society by perfection, then all people and all societies will be judged to be wanting. The judgments you should make is if a person or society strives to be their best. This striving, for an individual, needs to be a judgment on their intelligence, knowledge, skills, and abilities. If they are trying to maximize these items, they should be judged positively. This striving, for society, is if they are trying to implement, preserve, protect, and defend the Natural Rights of the people so as to achieve “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”, as well as Equality of Opportunity for all their people.

The history of America has been one of imperfection. But it has also been one of striving to correct these imperfections. Judging America by where we have started and where we are currently demonstrates that we are a society striving to be our best, and the best that world history has ever achieved. Your judgment should be that while we still have many imperfections to correct, we have done well in correcting many of our imperfections. To judge us as being imperfect is a false judgment.

Such a false judgment also leads to the divisiveness we have seen in today’s society. We would all be better off if we recognized the goodness of our striving and our attempts to correct our imperfections.

07/05/20 My Message to Americans

In these troubled times the most important thing you can do with your life is encapsulated in “My Message to Americans” in which the topics are:

If you keep these messages, then you can lead a fulfilling life. There would also be much less troubled times if these messages were followed by all people.

07/04/30 The Bill of Rights as Envisioned by Progressives and Leftists

With the current turmoil in the United States, and the action of the mob with the acquiescence of many Democrat Politicians, Journalist, and Progressive Commentators, as well as some Republican Politicians I have decided to rewrite the Bill of Rights based on their words and deeds as follows:

* * * * *

The Freedom of Religion shall be restricted to a person’s home, church, synagogue, mosque, or temple of religion. All public speech and displays of religiosity shall be prohibited. The religiosity of a person shall be a determinate of the suitability for a person to hold public office.

The Freedom of Speech shall be allowed for all speech that is not offensive to someone or some group, nor allowed for any speech that challenges progressive/leftists public policies.

The Freedom of the Press shall not be constrained by libelous or slanderous statements of the press, nor of others libelous or slanderous statements reported by the press. Nor shall the Freedom of the Press be constrained by any statements that are false.

The Right of the People to assemble shall not be constrained by the actions of the people of rioting, looting, and arson during such assemblies.

The Right of the People to require the Government to provide reparations for perceived past, present, or future harm shall not be limited in any manner.

The Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms for the purposes of hunting shall not be infringed. All other purposes of arms shall be constricted and regulated as the government sees fit.

No Armed Forces of the United States will be utilized within the United States for any reason whatsoever.

The Right of the People to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, e-mails and texts, and property, against searches and seizures, shall not be infringed unless the government believes that such items are being utilized for nefarious purposes, or by another person making allegations of nefarious purposes.

Equality under the law shall be enforced except for Politicians, the Wealthy, the Powerful, or Politically Protected Groups.

When a person has been accused of nefarious actions, they will be presumed guilty until they can prove their innocence. All statements of nefarious actions shall be taken at face value. The seriousness of the alleged nefarious actions shall be a determinate of the suitability for a person to hold public office.

The policing of the laws shall be an optional duty and responsibility of a Municipal Government.

An impartial jury shall be required, by a jury tainted by prosecutorial and law enforcement statements and actions shall not be considered partial.

No bail shall be required, and all persons who have been arrested shall be released until their hearing or trial.

The Rights Retained by the People may be constricted by Presidential, Governors, and Mayoral decrees in the times of National, State, or local emergencies, with such decrees of emergencies as so declared by the President, Governors, and Mayors.

All Federal laws, rules, and regulations shall be subservient to State approval, and all State laws, rules, and regulations shall be subservient to local governments' approval.

The Right to Vote shall not be restricted by any requirement of the legality of the vote.

Also, there shall be no border controls, restrictions, nor deportation of any person who illegally entered the United States, and all declarations by illegal immigrants shall be taken at face value.

* * * * *

The above rewrite would be humorous if it were not so grounded in today’s reality. And this reality is dangerous to the American ideals of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.

07/03/20 U.S. Holidays

The national U.S. holidays that we celebrate are a mishmash of days that have also lost much of their meaning.  I would propose a refashioning of these holidays that would commemorate the ideals of America. Before you begin your commemorations and celebrations you should always remember and learn from our history of the meanings of these days. My list of new United States National Holidays is as follows:

For more on these proposed holidays, and their importance to Americans, I would direct you to my Article “U.S. Holidays”.

07/02/20 Black Leaders Matter

Black Leaders Matter, but leadership can take you in different, and sometimes opposite directions. One direction is for Equality of Opportunity, and the other direction is for Equality of Outcome as my Chirp of, “07/01/20 Equality of Opportunity is Antithetical to Equality of Outcome” discusses. And so, it is with most of today’s black leaders. The vast majority of black leaders seem to be concerned with Equality of Outcome, while only a small minority are concerned by Equality of Opportunity. But Equality of Outcome leaves you dependent and subservient to others, while Equality of Opportunity provides you with Freedom and Liberty.

Entitlements “, “Reparations“, “Social Justice”, and other government interventions in your life diminish your Freedoms and Liberties. Some government intervention is needful and necessary, but excessive governmental interventions are often diminishing of a person. And all governmental actions suffer from “The Law of Unintended Consequences”, which means that some harm may come of them.

When Black Leaders espouse Equality of Outcome, it often requires that they control your life. To achieve equal outcomes, they must control the results of your life, and this often happens by controlling the processes of your life. Many of these Black Leaders have also obtained political power and wealth through this espousal and control. Much of this political power and wealth that they have gained would have to cede to the people if they espoused Equality of Opportunity.

This is most pernicious for those Black Leaders that claim the titles of Reverends or Pastors of the Christian faith but espouse Equality of Outcome. A Reverend or Pastors' first duty is to God, which in the Christian faith means to obey and follow God’s laws. This means first and foremost to follow “The Ten Commandments“ and to remember the Golden Rule “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”. They also must espouse peaceable actions and forgiveness as peace and forgiveness was a tenant of the teachings of Jesus Christ. They have also forgotten that the Bible instructs us that the ”Sins of the fathers are not vested upon the sons”. Unfortunately, many religious Black Leaders have forgotten the true meaning of these Commandments, the Golden Rule, peaceable actions, forgiveness, and the sins of the father and have twisted their meanings to achieve their goals.

Therefore, beware of governmental actions in your life as they often diminish you. Beware of those Black Leaders who espouse governmental actions in your life, as they often espouse these actions to gain control of your life. And more importantly, choose to follow Black Leaders who espouse your taking control of your life through Equality of Opportunity.

07/01/20 Equality of Opportunity is Antithetical to Equality of Outcome

Equality of Opportunity is to allow for a person to flourish based on their intellect, motivations, talents, skills, and abilities, unencumbered by artificial constraints. As all people have different intellect, motivations, talents, skills, and abilities, the outcomes of their efforts will always be different.

Equality of Outcome, although it is not always clearly defined, it usually describes as a state in which people have approximately the same material wealth or, more generally, in which the general economic conditions of their lives are similar. Achieving this requires reducing or eliminating material or status inequalities between individuals in a society.

Equality of Opportunity requires freedom and liberty to pursue your own goals and be responsible for your successes or failures, while Equality of Outcome requires that others determine your goals and your success. Equality of Opportunity means that each of us will have different achievements and the wealth or status of our achievements. Equality of Outcome requires others to decide our achievements and our wealth and status.

Equality of Opportunity is the result of recognizing the natural rights of a person, while Equality of Outcome requires the compliance or submission of a person to the dictates of others. Equality of Opportunity is a goal of a democratic society, while Equality of Outcome can only be achieved through some form of socialism or despotism.

To make a judgment based on the outcomes of a person or group is to not recognize the opportunity of the person or group. The only just judgment of a person or group is to determine if a person or group has had their Equality of Opportunity constricted in some manner. If this constriction has occurred, then a redress of their grievance is appropriate.

Consequently, Equality of Opportunity is an ideal of America, while Equality of Outcome is antithetical to the ideals of America.

06/30/20 Is It Racism or Is It Risk Avoidance?

There are many allegations of racism and racist actions by Americans in their everyday actions. The question is, are these actions, if true, are motivated by racism or risk avoidance for the purposes of self-protection? The following examples are illuminative of this question:

The first example is of a white person(s) walking down the street in an urban area in the dark of the night. They observe a group of young black persons coming toward them, and they then walk to the other side of the street to avoid them. Did they do so because of racism or risk avoidance?

The second example is a storekeeper observing some young black person(s) wandering through their store. If they paid closer attention to them, did they do so because of racism or risk avoidance?

There are many more examples of black persons being considered a greater risk and the actions of those that take precautions to reduce the risks to themselves. Many of the most egregious examples are in the interactions of the police and black persons. These egregious police examples could be minimized if both the police and the suspect treated each other politely and respectfully. But this respectfulness must be a bilateral, or one party or the other may behave egregiously.

In these examples, the statistics show that there is a greater risk of uncivil or criminal actions by the young black person(s). Although this increased risk is not significant, it is significant if uncivil or criminal actions happen to you. Are you prudent to avoid personal harm, or are you a racist?

I understand the hurt feelings and loss of dignity of those peaceful black persons who intend no harm. It is humiliating for a peaceful black person to be considered a greater risk. It is humiliating, but is it racism? The answer to this problem is not more anti-discrimination laws, as people will always take actions that reduce their personal risks. The answer is more self and group discipline by blacks to not engage in uncivil or criminal actions. If the public perceives no greater harm than they will not take greater precautions, and allegations of racism would subside.

However, with greater risks, it is foolish not to take greater precautions. It is not racism to do so; it is risk avoidance.

06/29/20 Are They Mad and Are They Crazy?

He madness of mobs is a well-known phenomenon throughout history. The madness of the current mobs in the United States is also well known. Such mob madness involves no rational thought and is indeed driven by passion and anger and are the actions of people mad at someone or something. There is also no doubt, as demonstrated by their words and deeds, that the members of these mobs have little intellectual acuity, nor are they knowledgeable of history. The mob members believe in their indoctrination by “The Biggest Falsehoods in America,” and they have not examined all the facts or truths of American. They are also blinded by one perspective of America rather than examining all perspectives about America.

A peaceful mob is a protest, while an unpeaceful mob is a riot. When this mob madness devolves to property destruction, looting, or arson, then the mob is involved in criminal actions, and it has become a riot. Even if only a small percentage of a mob becomes involved in criminal activities, the other percentage of the mob bears moral responsibility for the criminal actions that occur. This moral responsibility is in that they have allowed for, or sustained the conditions, for criminal actions. A protest has a responsibility to maintain peace within the protest. If the protest cannot maintain peace, then the police need to restore peace, and the peaceful members of the protest need to disperse to allow the police to restore the peace. Once peace has been restored, then the protests can reformulate and advocate for reforms to achieve their goals.

Throughout history, riots have never solved the problems, and they often make the situation worse. And very rarely do riots obtain the outcome for which they were intended. Some of the greatest human rights violations have occurred during or were the result of riots. Some of these riots have produced years or decades of misery, and some of these riots have engendered the most calamitous reign of power in human history. Societies have collapsed as the result of riots, and the remains of the society have been of privation, the rule of force, and the subjugation of the people.

The question of company sponsorships of organizations that support or encourage riots is, are they mad, or are they simply crazy? The very existence of, and continued operations of companies, requires that “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” and "Justice and The Rule of Law in America" is maintained in America. Rioting endangers these principles, and successful rioting abolishes these principles. The very existence of companies is a stake, yet some companies provide moral and financial assistance to organizations that would ultimately end their existence or, at the minimum, reduce their revenues and profits to endanger their existence. Even the vacuous support of these organizations endangers their company, as it allows for a false narrative to be established that could result in significant changes in America that would impact their company.

Perhaps these companies are just engaging in feeding the crocodile as explained in my Chirp of, “06/13/20 Feeding the Crocodile”. If they are doing so, I will remind them that the crocodile is always hungry for more, and the crocodile will always end up eating them. If others are supporting these organizations for the purposes of feeding the crocodile, the same warning applies. If you believe that these organizations that support riots will fix the problems, then you are either mad, crazy, or at the very least delusional. The rest of us should not listen to and, indeed, oppose those that are mad, crazy, or delusional.

06/28/20 Decision Points in Life

Michael Lindell is an American inventor, businessman, and entrepreneur. He is the founder and CEO of My Pillow, Inc., and is sometimes referred to as "the My Pillow guy". He has been promoting his biography, "What Are The Odds? From Crack Addict to CEO" that is now available.

While promoting his book, he makes several statements that should be examined. Statements such as “use mathematics to prove the existence of God’ and “What are the odds?” need to be examined. My new Article, “Decision Points in Life”, examines these statements and how the probabilities of making better or poorer decisions effects your chances in the making for a better or poorer life.

06/27/20 Other People’s Money (OPM)

In today's society, it has become very easy to spend Other People's Money, especially in government funding, but also in commerce. My new article, “Other People’s Money (OPM)”, examines this issue.

06/26/20 Tax the Rich

My new article examines the complex meanings and implications of “Tax the Rich and Making Them Pay Their Fair Share“. Those that utilize these phrases rarely understand these meanings, complications, and implications, and this article examines these issues and concerns.

06/25/20 The Value of Money

What is the value of money? Money by itself is just high-quality paper with fancy engraving, and as such, has little value in of itself. Electronic money is just a series of numbers on a computer which has almost no value in of itself. It is what the money represents that is its value. For it represents the labor of a person to obtain the money. Whether that labor is of a physical or mental effort, it represents the value of your labor. When you purchase goods or services, you are exchanging your labor for another’s labor. When you exchange monies, you are exchanging your labor for another’s labor. When the government collects taxes, they are expropriating your labor. Whether these taxes are used or misused for the purposes of government, these taxes represent your labor.

When you accept “Entitlements“ from the government, you are accepting the labor from another person, except if you are accepting benefits from an entitlement that you have paid into. Even then, if you accept more monies that you paid into the entitlement, you are accepting the labor from another person.

You should, therefore, always equate money with labor. If you think of money as labor, then you can better judge if the goods or services received are worth the labor that you spent to obtain these goods or services. Thinking of money as hours (or minutes) of labor also helps you make a better decision as to whether you wish to obtain these goods or services. Thinking of taxes as your hours of labor also helps you to make a better judgment as to the efficacy of government spending.

06/24/30 Principles

Along with my “06/22/20 Quotes of Wisdom” I have formulated several principles of my life that I always keep in mind in my everyday dealings with people. If you practice these Principles regularly, they become easier to practice in your life.

The above Chips are part of my collection of "Principles, Truisms, Locutions, and Rules" that are within my article on “Life”.

06/23/20 Quotes of Wisdom

One of my “Truisms” is:

“The world is full of quotes, but not so many quotes of wisdom.”
- Mark Dawson

With this in mind, I have decided to list some of my favorite quotes of wisdom:

For more on my wisdom I would direct you to my Article “Pearls of Wisdom”.

06/22/20 Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How?

Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How are the questions that journalism students are taught that they must ask and answer before they compose their reporting. Good reporting requires that these questions be answered before accurate journalism is complete. However, these questions should not be limited to journalism, as they should be asked and answered in all intellectual activities. Whenever you think about or investigate a topic or subject, these are the questions you should try to answer before you formulate an opinion or conclusion.

In asking and answering these questions, you need to consult several sources and diverse viewpoints to reach a sound opinion or conclusion. Without doing so, you will reach an erroneous opinion or conclusion. Once you have sufficient answers to these questions, you should then apply “Reasoning” to the answers to reach a sound opinion or conclusion. Otherwise, you are allowing others to think for you, or you are being swayed by the emotional appeals of others.

06/21/20 New Religion Articles

I have added two new articles in my “Religion“ section. The first new article is a rewording and reexamination of “The Ten Commandments”, while the second article is an examination of “God’s Forgiveness”.

06/20/20 Burning Books

The removal or destruction of public statues, the canceling of television shows, the censoring of movies and songs, the painting over public murals, the restrictions on or removal of social media posts, and the removal of signs or displays deemed offensive by the Progressives and the Left are all equivalent to book burning. I do not expect that we will actually burn books in a public display, but I do expect that books deemed offensive by the Progressives and the Left will soon be removed from libraries and bookstores. These actions have no place in America and are antithetical to Freedom and Liberty and are an assault on our Natural Rights. They are also an attempt to suppress or rewrite our history, a condemnation and suppression that I have written about in my Article, “Condemned to Repeat It“.

The mob and their supporters have loudly proclaimed the false narratives of "Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchical Society", “Racism is Prevalent”, “06/08/30 Systemic Police Bias”, as well as other “The Biggest Falsehoods in America” as justifications for their actions and the above reactions to the mob actions. However, no attention is paid to the actual problems as I have Chirped on, “06/10/20 The Problem is Systemic Liberalisms & Progressivisms”.

These are all actions and reactions that are part of my Chirp on “06/15/20 The Destruction of America”. The actions and reactions are also symptomatic of my Chirps on “06/16/20 Madness, Madness, Madness” and “06/13/20 Feeding the Crocodile”. If we allow these actions and reactions to continue, we will allow for the destruction of America. This destruction, for the most part, is not being done by the government, but by the actions of mobs and the acquiescence to the mob with the tacit approval of government elected and appointed officials. Much of Corporate America has also acquiesced to the actions and reactions of the mob and has shown no fidelity to the ideals of America. The Mainstream Media reporting and the Mainstream Cultural Media responses have been appalling in their inaccuracies and incompleteness and are symptomatic of “Modern Journalism“.

Elected Officials, more interested in currying favor with their interest groups and obtaining campaign contributions and election support from them and Corporate America, rather than doing what is best for all the American people, bears a large burden for creating and not resolving these problems.

Corporate America, more interested in profits and pandering rather than helping to resolve these problems through increased employment opportunities, bears a large burden for creating these problems. Corporate America outsourced its manufacturing and production capabilities to other countries to increase profits, outsourcing that is responsible for the loss of employment in lower-class and middle-class persons, but most especially the diverse lower-class population of our country. Outsourcing that has also endangered the health and safety of all Americans, as examined in my Pandemic Chirp on “03/24/20 Made in the U.S.A.” Corporate America that has profited by our Freedoms and Liberties and is now is willing to restrict them by pandering to the mob's actions and reactions.

Finally, the American electorate bears the ultimate responsibility for creating and not resolving the problems in America. By continuing to vote for politicians that are not interested in solving the problems of common Americans, but are more interested in obtaining and retaining power and currying the favor of interest groups and Corporate America, they allow these problems to germinate and fester.

Another mob action is necessary to right our course in America. A mob of voters on election day that will reject these actions and reactions by electing politicians who will not pander to the mob, but politicians that will realistically confront and solve the problems in America.

06/19/20 Mind Reading, Divining Motivations, Dog Whistle Accusations, and Strawmen

No one truly knows how another person truly thinks and feels. The only thing we can know about another person is the words and deeds of the other person. Anyone who believes that they are able to perceive another’s thoughts or feelings is either deluding themselves or projecting their own thoughts and feelings upon another. When this is done in the political arena is often done for political gain rather than understanding. This political gain is most often accomplished by means of Mind Reading, Divining Motivations, accusations of Dog Whistling, and Strawmen of their opponents.

When one party restates what another has said, they are often utilizing Mind Reading or Divining Motivations in their restatements. Often this restatement is done by putting words into someone’s mouth, then criticizing the words that were put into their mouths. This technique is to rephrase or restate what someone has said in the most negative connotation possible or to add negative motivations into another’s mouth. The person who put the words into another’s mouth then goes on to criticize the words they put into someone’s mouth. This is a dishonest and despicable tactic and a wholly inappropriate manner of debating political issues. It is often done to "Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)" someone in the hope that the audience will not pay attention to what the other person actually said. It is your responsibility to only speak your own thoughts and reasoning, or to quote the words of another person, then to “Criticism vs. Critique” the actual words of the other person. After both sides have laid out their reasoning and conclusions, then it is fair to critique the others' reasoning or conclusions, based on what they have stated, not what you have stated for them.

Accusations of Dog Whistling are another means to imply nefarious motivations to another. When someone claims that another is Dog Whistling, it is done to cast aspersions on the person and those that would listen to the person. Dog Whistling accusations are also an attempt to silence or limit another’s speech. To control another’s speech is an attempt to control the discussion, dialog, or debate, and to not allow contrary opinions to be voiced. And those who would attempt to control another’s speech often have the desire to control others' thinking (which is an example of my divining the motivation of others).

Another technique is to Strawman another’s words. A strawman that is a weak or sham argument set up to be easily refuted. These strawman arguments are often simplifications or extreme polarization of the other’s words. Strawmen do not accurately reflect what a person has said, as they allow for no middle positions or subtleties nor nuances of their positions. Middle positions or subtleties and nuances that are important to fully understand what is being said.

Those that engage in the techniques of Mind Reading, Divining Motivations, accusations of Dog Whistles, and Strawman do not want to inform the public but sway the public to their opinions. Shame on them for doing so, and shame on you for allowing them to do so. We should all remember that this is done to "Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)" someone in the hope that the audience will not pay attention to what the other person actually said. We should all guard against allowing these techniques to sway us, and we should all be very wary of those that utilize these techniques.

06/18/20 The Rule of Law rather than The Rule of The Supreme Court

Congress in 1964 passed the Civil Rights Act that includes Title VII provisions on employment protections in America. Congress declared it “unlawful ... for an employer to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex or national origin.” Title VII’s plain text does not include sexual orientation or gender identity.

With the Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County on Title VII protections in employment, the Supreme Court has expanded the meaning of sex in America. With this ruling, the Supreme Court has changed the legal definition of sex. It is no longer male or female but now is Male, Female, Homosexual, and Transgendered. Many may wish that Title VII did include gays or transgender, including myself. In fact, members of Congress have introduced legislation many times over the last half-century to change the statute to do exactly that. For reasons of politics this has not occurred, but for reasons of good social policy, this should occur. I would, therefore. Encourage all Americans to support this change to Title VII.

To properly enforce this Supreme Court ruling would require that employers gather information on the sexual orientation of applicants and employees (through “The Law of Unintended Consequences”). This definition of sex may also ripple into other policies not related to Title VII (i.e., Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and others). Ultimately, this may lead to governments gathering information on the sexual orientation of all Americans.

This ruling does not address the issue of Religious Liberty in the hiring of employees in religious institutions or religious companies. It also impacts our freedoms of association as well as other “Human Rights”. As usual, in these cases, the rights of one group (i.e., Homosexual and Transgendered) are pitted against another group (i.e., Religious Groups and other groups), which conflict with each other. This conflict of groups has been a dynamic in American history. The Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton has ignored this conflict. Their decision also ignored the consequences of enforcement. To ignore this, conflict or consequences is not to resolve this conflict or consequences. Therefore, we can expect a multitude of lawsuits about this conflict or consequences because of the Bostock v. Clayton County ruling.

This ruling is also an excellent example of my Article “Judges, Not Lords“ in that the Supreme Court has substituted the Rule of Law for The Rule of The Supreme Court. Social policy is only to be implemented by laws created by Legislators and signed into law by the President or Governor, and only if the law is deemed Constitutional. To do so otherwise is to transfer social policy decisions from the people, as expressed through their elected representatives, to the unelected courts. This transfer is an assault on the Constitution and the rights of the people to govern themselves in a Democratic Republic. We must redress this unbalancing of powers between the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial to preserve the American principles of self-government and the protection of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.

06/17/20 Essential Duties and Responsibilities of Municipal Government

What are the differences between essential and non-essential services of a municipal or local government? Essential services are defined as those minimal services that must be fully provided for and achieved within a municipality or local government. All other services are to be considered as non-essential. All non-essential services are only to be provided if they are legal and proper functions of government, as enacted by legislative authority, and as budgetary constraints allow. A concise list of these essential services is:

    1. Maintain the Rule of Law through proper policing and law administration.
    2. Provide protection from calamities such as fire prevention and suppression, and infrastructure safety inspections.
    3. Provide for sanitary conditions of water, sewer, and waste management.
    4. Provide health services for disease control and food and drink safety.
    5. Provide infrastructure and management for the movement of peoples and materials (roadways, bridges, tunnels, waterways. public transportation, etc.).
    6. Provide for the primary and secondary education of its youth to assure the minimal knowledge and skills necessary to become future productive members of society.
    7. Assure for the proper and legal voting in elections.
    8. Assure equal treatment for all in the provisioning of these services.

Until all these essential services are provided, no non-essential services can be implemented nor funded. The problem in doing so is that many would expand the boundaries of essential services to include non-essential services. This is an expansion of minimal services to maximal services. It is the definition of these minimal boundaries that are often the foundation of political debates as to the role of government in society. Whether these essential services are to be provided by municipal employees, non-governmental organizations, or contracted to private companies is also a question that is debatable, but beyond the scope of this Chirp.

The boundaries of essential services, and the limits of non-essential services, must be defined to assure that the Freedoms and Liberties of the people are not infringed upon by the government. Or to paraphrase another famous statement – To be essential, or to be non-essential, that is the question. Let us determine the proper answer to this question and let us not bow to the tyranny of the majority in determining these answers.

06/16/20 Madness, Madness, Madness

Is America slipping into madness or the quality of being rash and foolish? I am reminded of the end of the movie “The Bridge on the River Kwai” when the camp doctor is observing the Japanese, British, and the American dead, and the destruction of the bridge and train, he started crying out “Madness, Madness, Madness” to describe the scene. If we do not stop the madness on the left and the right, I am afraid that we will be viewing the death and destruction of American civil society.

The belief in Political Correctness, the ability of individuals to hold disparate ideas, the sway of emotional appeals, the polarization of us versus them that I have written about in my last few Chirps is now prevalent in America. All of these are signs of madness or at the very minimum of America becoming rash and foolish.

The lack of "Formal and Informal Logic", and the "Logical Fallacies", and "Cognitive Biases" of our thinking are driving us into madness. We have too few politicians and leaders that are willing to yell ‘Stop and Think Before Acting’, and too few people that are willing to stop and think. Political leaders more concerned about political power are driving us like a stampede of cattle to enact their agendas.

Rashness and foolishness have occurred throughout American history. However, some leaders have arisen to lead us out of this rashness and foolishness. Where are the leaders of today that can do this? Unfortunately, none have so far appeared. Some have tried, but their efforts are being drowned out by the madness. The personal destruction that I have written about in my Chirp of ”06/14/20 The Destruction of America” has frightened many people from speaking out and becoming the leaders that we require. However, courage is required to become the forceful leader that we need to end this madness. Always remember that:

"True Courage is doing the right thing, at the right time, regardless of personal consequences."
   - Mark Dawson

It is time to stop the madness. It is time to stop the rash and foolish actions. It is time to stop and think before acting. It is time for us to take reasonable actions rather than emotional actions. It is time to stop personal destruction so that reasonable and intelligent leaders can arise. If we do not do so, then we shall go mad and destroy the American ideals of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.

06/15/20 The Destruction of America

America is being destroyed by Leftism. Not only the physical destruction that has occurred because of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis but the personal destruction of any who would speak out against these acts. People who speak out against these acts of rioting, looting, and arson are losing their jobs, businesses, and their reputations for daring to disagree with Leftists. No longer is free speech tolerated, but indeed, it is to be suppressed. Those who would speak out against these acts and Leftists policy positions are to be destroyed. Not only are moderates and conservatives to be destroyed, but liberals and progressives who disagree with the Left are now being destroyed. Anyone who is not of my Chirp of “06/12/20 The Left Pole” is to be destroyed. They are not to be ostracized but to be destroyed, for no tolerance of any opinion but the Leftist opinion is to be allowed.

There is a noun for those that would destroy others that disagree with them. That noun is “Fascists”, and Fascism is best expressed by one of the quotes of its leading proponents:

" We do not argue with those who disagree with us, we destroy them."
-
Benito Mussolini

This destruction is antithetical to the Natural, Constitutional, and Civil Rights of the people. This destruction can only lead to tyranny, a tyranny that controls what people can do or say. It also reveals a hubris:

"The hubris of a government that believes they can direct or control a free people is astounding. Only a subjugated or subservient people can be directed or controlled."
- Mark Dawson

A free people can only exist when they have “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. This Destruction in America is the destruction of these ideals. It is reminiscent of the “Reign of Terror” after the “French Revolution”. A Reign of Terror that destroys all in its path. It is time for the people to rise up and destroy the destroyers before this Reign of Terror descends upon us. Leftists are not engaged in acts of civil disobedience, but acts of civil revolution that are actions against "A Civil Society" and are, indeed, acts of evil. We should all remember that:

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men should do nothing.”
- Edmund Burke

It is time for all good people to act and not allow for the triumph of evil. We are now speeding down this slippery slope to destruction at a speed that may be difficult, if not impossible, to stop. If we allow this Destruction of America to continue, I fear that we will suffer the same fate as the “Fall of the Western Roman Empire”. Or, as it has been said:

"At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide."
- Abraham Lincoln

To allow for this Destruction of America is to also allow for the end of the American experiment as expressed in The Gettysburg Address:

 “… and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
- Abraham Lincoln

06/14/20 Federal Intervention in CHAZ

CHAZ is the acronym for the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone,” an area of about six blocks in Seattle ceded to protesters. Much debate has occurred as to the legality of this action, and for the proper Local, State, and Federal government response to CHAZ. In these debates, we have had references to various Federal laws that would be appropriate for any response by the Federal government. However, I have not heard any discussion on the Constitutional responsibilities for intervention.

Article IV Section 4 of the United States Constitution states:

“The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened), against domestic Violence.”

In addition, Article IV Section 1 of the United States Constitution states:

“All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

Under the Constitution, all levels of government have a duty and responsibility to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution of the United States. They also have the duty and responsibility to assure “the equal protection of the laws” for all persons within the jurisdiction of the United States. As CHAZ does not have a Republican Form of Government, their actions are a form of succession or rebellion from the United States, and the people within CHAZ are not equally protected under the law, the actions of CHAZ are Unconstitutional. The words and deeds, and the inactions of the Mayor of Seattle and the Governor of Washington demonstrate their lack of fealty to the Constitution and, therefore, require a response from the Federal government. This lack of fealty to the Constitution should also be the basis for the removal from office of the Mayor and Governor under Amendment XIV, Section 3 of the Constitution:

“No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”

Therefore, all levels of government have the duty and responsibility under Article IV Section 4 of the Constitutional to end the actions of CHAZ forthwith, and to remove such persons from office who did not meet their duty and responsibility to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution of the United States under Amendment XIV, Section 3 of the Constitution.

06/13/20 Feeding the Crocodile

To placate or appease a mob is often done to quell the passions of the mob. Just as often it leads to the following metaphor:

“Each one hopes that if he feeds the crocodile enough, the crocodile will eat him last. All of them hope that the storm will pass before their turn comes to be devoured. But I fear greatly that the storm will not pass. It will rage and it will roar ever more loudly, ever more widely.”
- Winston Churchill

The statements and actions of many on the rioting, looting, and arson that has occurred because of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis are a perfect example of this metaphor. The calls by our leaders for systemic changes are often done for the purpose of feeding the crocodile, or for the purpose of obtaining and retaining political power. However, feeding a crocodile does not solve the problems, but only postpones the day of reckoning and makes the day of reckoning direr. Placing politicians in power who feed the crocodile is dangerous, as they often institute policies to feed the crocodile.

Appeasement to the demands of one’s opponents is often the means of feeding the crocodile. As the wars of the 20th century have so vividly demonstrated, such appeasement often leads to a larger war. Larger wars that result in more deaths, destruction, and injuries than that which would have occurred otherwise. Appeasement is never the solution to feeding the crocodile, but solving the problem is the solution.

One of the newest ways of feeding the crocodile is by kneeling. In all human cultures and societies throughout history, the act of kneeling or bowing down was an act of submission. The beaten or downtrodden person demonstrates their submission to another by kneeling or bowing down to their conqueror or oppressor. Consequently, the symbolic act of kneeling or bowing down to another is a symbolic act of submission to the will of the other person, and not a symbolic act of solidarity with another person. If one wishes to express solidarity with another, one should stand shoulder to shoulder with another person(s) in peaceful moments of thoughtful introspection or prayer. The Judeo-Christian culture is that a person should only kneel or bow to God. For in the Judeo-Christian culture, all people are to be considered equal and not to be submissive to another.

The false narratives of an "Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchical Society", “Racism is Prevalent” as well as other “The Biggest Falsehoods in America”, and my Chirp of “06/08/30 Systemic Police Bias”, as the root cause of our problems in America continues to feed the crocodile. It is time to stop feeding the crocodile. It is time to face the realities in America based on facts and reasoning and not emotional appeals. Calls for "Change and/or New" can be dangerous if not based on intellectual "Reasoning". To utilize emotional appeals rather than intellectual reasoning will not solve our problems but only exacerbate the problems.

It is time to stop the rioting, looting, and arson. It is time to return to an "A Civil Society" and one that institutes “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. To not do so is to place into pearl “… that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth”.

06/12/20 The Left Pole

When you are standing on the North Pole, all directions are to the south. When you are on the Political Left, all contrary policy positions are to the Political Right. Therefore, any deviances to the Left policy positions are labeled Conservative or Right-Wing. No variances of their policy positions are allowed, as no shades of grey are permitted. As such, you are either for them, or you are against them.

Consequently, it is not possible to have "A Civil Society", and incivility is expected to achieve their policy goals. Their reasoning is they believe that as they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior they are, of course, always correct, as stated in my Chirp of “04/01/19 The Creed of Progressives and Leftists”. Therefore, incivility is permitted to achieve their ideal of a just society.

This is being played out in of the rioting, looting, and arson that occurred with the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis. Peaceful protests should be encouraged to right this wrong in the present and future; however, rioting, looting, and arson are not acceptable. But they seem to be acceptable to the left, as evidenced by their non-condemnation of these activities, and sometimes outright support and assistance for the looting, rioting, and arson.

The Virtue-Signaling of the Mainstream Media, Progressive Commentators, Mainstream Cultural Media, and Democrat politicians that is often accomplished by means discussed in my Chirp of “06/08/20 Parrot Praising and Parrot Condemning”, reveals that they live on the Left Pole. The Left Pole in which everything rotates around them and their policies.

06/11/20 Parrot Praising and Parrot Condemning

We have often seen reporting of actors and actresses, celebrities, fine artists, musicians, poets and writers, producers, directors, and scriptwriters, sportsmen and sportswomen, etc. supporting or expressing their viewpoints on subjects or situations that are topics of discussions under current consideration. And, all too often, these viewpoints seem to be one-sided, the side of Politically Correct thought. Rarely have we seen thoughtful or reasoned statements by these personages. Indeed, if you listen or read any further comments by these personages, you will discover statements bereft of thoughtfulness or “Reasoning”. These personages’ statements are rarely challenged, especially at the time of their making these statements. Reporters or interviewers are not interested in challenging these personages, as these personages may become upset with them and not speak to them in the future. But most often, it is because the reporters or interviewers are in agreement with these statements.

I refer to this reporting as Parrot Praising. It is the parroting of politically correct thought for the purpose of praising politically correct thought. The Mainstream Cultural Media, supported by the Mainstream Media, is at the forefront of Parrot Praising. This Parrot Praise is only for Politically Correct thought, and not for reasoned thought. Indeed, nonpolitically correct thought is often derided in what I refer to as Parrot Condemning. Consequently, this Parrot Praising is hooray for their side, while Parrot Condemning is booing the other side. One of the most insidious forms of Parrot Praising is giving awards to those who Parrot Praise or Parrot Condemn. These awards are often given by Liberals and Progressives to Liberals and Progressives, at which time the award recipient often Parrot Praises or Parrot Condemns. This Parrot Praising and Parrot Condemning is also a means of Virtue Signaling of what they believe is their moral and intellectually superior opinions, as examined in my Chirp of “04/01/19 The Creed of Progressives and Leftists”. Parrot Condemning is also for the purpose of trying to silence anyone who would disagree with the Parrot Praising. This Parrot Praising and Parrot Condemning is not a thoughtful discussion on the issues or concerns, but an attempt to sway public opinion for one side and against the other side.

This Parrot Praising and Parrot Condemning reflects negatively on those who make these statements, as it demonstrates their lack of intellectual acuity. Often, these statements are emotional responses rather than reasoned responses. You should, therefore, ignore the Parrot Praising and Parrot Condemning, and instead think about the reasoned statements of these personages (which in most cases means that you will not have to think at all).

06/10/20 The Problem is Systemic Liberalisms & Progressivisms

In the wake of the rioting, looting, and arson that has occurred as a result of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis the cries of "Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchical Society", “Racism is Prevalent” as well as other “The Biggest Falsehoods in America”, and my Chirp of “06/08/30 Systemic Police Bias” have abounded. Calls for systemic changes in America have proliferated. Proposed changes to “Social Policy” and “Entitlements“ will soon follow, usually without consideration of the repercussions of "Change and/or New" and “The Law of Unintended Consequences”. My new article, “The Problem is Systemic Liberalisms & Progressivisms” examines these issues.

06/09/20 Defund the Police Movement

Every locality or municipality is free to choose how they enforce the law, as long as this enforcement is Constitutional and not in violation of "Justice and The Rule of Law in America". What type of policing, how many police and the amount of funding for the police is their prerogative? The only caveat is that the natural rights of the people are protected, for, without this protection, society will deteriorate into chaos, as the people will take the law into their own hands to protect their natural rights.

The calls for defunding the police or replacing the police by another form of policing runs the risk of this deterioration. This deterioration must be guarded against by whatever actions the locality or municipality undertakes to change their policing. If it does deteriorate, the State and Federal officials may be forced into action to protect the Natural, Constitution, and Civil Rights of the people. This action would most likely be in the form of armed forces patrolling the streets of a locality or municipality, as expressed in my Chirp of, “06/07/20 Suppression of Rioting, Looting, and Arson”. Armed Forces patrolling the streets of America is not a proper way to achieve law enforcement, although it may be necessary if this deterioration occurs.

Law and Order are one of the essential duties and responsibilities of any government. Without Law and Order, it is not possible for a society to function properly. Not only would there be social unrest, but the localities or municipalities' economy would collapse without Law and Order. Small businesses that supply goods and services to the people could not function without Law and Order. Large businesses would be wary of locating in these localities or municipalities due to the possibility of rioting, looting, and arson. This would, of course, lead to deprivations of the basic needs of a person to survive. A mass exodus of the people from these localities or municipalities would follow as they searched for theses needs elsewhere. Other localities or municipalities would have to absorb these people, which would put a strain on these other localities or municipalities' resources.

In changing our policing we should remember the British “Peelian principles” of policing. Nine principles that were set out in the "General Instructions" issued to every new police officer in the British Metropolitan Police from 1829 onward. The nine principles are as follows:

    1. To prevent crime and disorder, as an alternative to their repression by military force and severity of legal punishment.
    2. To recognise always that the power of the police to fulfill their functions and duties is dependent on public approval of their existence, actions and behaviour, and on their ability to secure and maintain public respect.
    3. To recognise always that to secure and maintain the respect and approval of the public means also the securing of the willing co-operation of the public in the task of securing observance of laws.
    4. To recognise always that the extent to which the co-operation of the public can be secured diminishes proportionately the necessity of the use of physical force and compulsion for achieving police objectives.
    5. To seek and preserve public favour, not by pandering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolutely impartial service to law, in complete independence of policy, and without regard to the justice or injustice of the substance of individual laws, by ready offering of individual service and friendship to all members of the public without regard to their wealth or social standing, by ready exercise of courtesy and friendly good humour, and by ready offering of individual sacrifice in protecting and preserving life.
    6. To use physical force only when the exercise of persuasion, advice and warning is found to be insufficient to obtain public co-operation to an extent necessary to secure observance of law or to restore order, and to use only the minimum degree of physical force which is necessary on any particular occasion for achieving a police objective.
    7. To maintain at all times a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and that the public are the police, the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.
    8. To recognise always the need for strict adherence to police-executive functions, and to refrain from even seeming to usurp the powers of the judiciary, of avenging individuals or the State, and of authoritatively judging guilt and punishing the guilty.
    9. To recognise always that the test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, and not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with them.

Let us, therefore, be very wary of changing our law enforcement until we can be assured that Law and Order for all will prevail after the change. Let us not delude ourselves with false hopes and expectations that the change will be for the better. In making any changes, we must be practical and realistic about the change. To not do so would impact the “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.

06/08/20 Systemic Police Bias

The rioting, looting, and arson that is occurring because of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis are supposedly about systemic police abuse of blacks in America. The question is, what is the statistical facts about systemic police racism, and how much systemic police bias belief is based on inflammatory rhetoric? Heather MacDonald’s op-ed in The Wall Street Journal about the myth of systemic police racism, which is grounded in multiple studies, which she cites, is illuminative:

This charge of systemic police bias was wrong during the Obama years and remains so today. However sickening the video of Floyd’s arrest, it isn’t representative of the 375 million annual contacts that police officers have with civilians. A solid body of evidence finds no structural bias in the criminal-justice system with regard to arrests, prosecution or sentencing. Crime and suspect behavior, not race, determine most police actions.

In 2019 police officers fatally shot 1,004 people, most of whom were armed or otherwise dangerous. African-Americans were about a quarter of those killed by cops last year (235), a ratio that has remained stable since 2015. That share of black victims is less than what the black crime rate would predict, since police shootings are a function of how often officers encounter armed and violent suspects. In 2018, the latest year for which such data have been published, African-Americans made up 53% of known homicide offenders in the U.S. and commit about 60% of robberies, though they are 13% of the population.

The police fatally shot nine unarmed blacks and 19 unarmed whites in 2019, according to a Washington Post database, down from 38 and 32, respectively, in 2015. The Post defines “unarmed” broadly to include such cases as a suspect in Newark, N.J., who had a loaded handgun in his car during a police chase. In 2018 there were 7,407 black homicide victims. Assuming a comparable number of victims last year, those nine unarmed black victims of police shootings represent 0.1% of all African-Americans killed in 2019. By contrast, a police officer is 18½ times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is to be killed by a police officer.

[…]

The latest in a series of studies undercutting the claim of systemic police bias was published in August 2019 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The researchers found that the more frequently officers encounter violent suspects from any given racial group, the greater the chance that a member of that group will be fatally shot by a police officer. There is “no significant evidence of antiblack disparity in the likelihood of being fatally shot by police,” they concluded.

A 2015 Justice Department analysis of the Philadelphia Police Department found that white police officers were less likely than black or Hispanic officers to shoot unarmed black suspects. Research by Harvard economist Roland G. Fryer Jr. also found no evidence of racial discrimination in shootings. Any evidence to the contrary fails to take into account crime rates and civilian behavior before and during interactions with police.

Therefore, we can conclude that systemic police bias is more of a belief based on inflammatory rhetoric, unsupported by the statistical facts. Changing laws, rules, and regulations based on unsupported facts is always a path to more problems. Let us, instead, vigorously prosecute those police actions that are a violation of the law.

06/07/20 Suppression of Rioting, Looting, and Arson

There has been much discussion about utilizing the Armed Forces of the United States to suppress the rioting, looting, and arson that has occurred as a result of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis. This would be a perilous decision, but not an unprecedented decision. Several times in our past history, we have utilized or Armed Forces to suppress rioting. The most famous examples of this are the Whiskey Rebellion (July 1794) and the New York City draft riots of the Civil War (July 13–16, 1863).

The Whiskey Rebellion demonstrated that the new national government had the will and ability to suppress violent resistance to its laws. The events contributed to the formation of political parties in the United States, a process already underway. The whiskey tax was repealed in the early 1800s during the Jefferson administration. Historian Carol Berkin argues that the episode, in the long run, strengthened American nationalism because the people appreciated how well Washington handled the rebels without resorting to tyranny.

The New York City draft riots (July 13–16, 1863), sometimes referred to as the Manhattan draft riots and known at the time as Draft Week, were violent disturbances in Lower Manhattan, widely regarded as the culmination of white working-class discontent with new laws passed by Congress that year to draft men to fight in the ongoing American Civil War. The riots remain the largest civil and most racially charged urban disturbance in American history. The use of Armed Forces in times of a National Emergency to suppress rioting was firmly established by this action.

However, there are limits to the utilization of Armed Forces within the United States. The Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 was passed to limit the powers of the federal government in using federal military personnel to enforce domestic policies within the United States. This act was designed so that the Armed Forces could not be utilized to impose tyranny upon the people of the United States. Some have interpreted the Posse Comitatus Act as meaning that no Armed Forces may be utilized for any actions within the United States, while others interpret this act as limiting the usage of Armed Forces to only National Emergency situations.

Federal troops have a long history of domestic roles, including occupying secessionist Southern states during Reconstruction and putting down major urban riots. The Posse Comitatus Act prohibits the use of active-duty personnel to "execute the laws"; however, there is disagreement over whether this language may apply to troops used in an advisory, support, disaster response, riot suppression, or other homeland defense role, as opposed to domestic law enforcement.

In the situation of Riot Suppression, the normal actions to accomplish this suppression are the Governor of the State where this is occurring to call into duty the National Guard of the State to assist local authorities in the suppression of rioting, looting, and arson. Rioting, looting, and arson are a violation of the Natural, Constitution, and Civil Rights of those people who are directly impacted by the rioting, looting, and arson. The failure of a Governor to suppress rioting, looting, and arson is an abdication of their duties and responsibilities. However, if the Governor does not call into duty the National Guard, the question is then “What is the Federal Governments responsibility in suppressing rioting, looting, and arson?’.  

As the Natural, Constitution, and Civil Rights of those people directly impacted by the rioting, looting, and arson are being violated, the Federal Government has a responsibility to ensure that these rights are protected and restored. Therefore, if the Federal government declares a National Emergency because of this rioting, looting, and arson, they have a duty and responsibility to suppress this rioting, looting, and arson.

The peaceful protests that occurred because of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis are an exercise in our free speech rights. The rioting, looting, and arson that is occurring is a violation of our rights and an act of rebellion against civil law. Therefore, it is appropriate for the Federal government to utilize Federal Armed Forces to protect and restore our rights. Care must be taken to assure that Armed Forces to not violate our rights, but to not protect our rights is a violation of our “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.

06/06/20 I Would Not Want to be the President

A friend of mine once stated that he would not want to be the President of the United States, but he would not mind being the Emperor of the United States. As I got older, more observant, and wiser, I have agreed more and more with this sentiment.

The President of the United States endures much in the performance of his duties. Constant criticisms, aspersions, backbiting, disparagements, denigrations, revilements, detractions, vilifications, and vituperations are the lot of The President. The hidden agendas of administration officials, and the bureaucrats stymying of his policies, directions, and executive orders are part in parcel of this job. The inability to get the cooperation of Congress to pass needful and necessary laws and the constant Judicial reviews of his actions makes it exceedingly difficult to govern the country. The political horse-trading and deals required to advance his agenda are not the skills and abilities that I possess nor that which I want to possess. I would, therefore, much rather be an Emperor that decrees and is obeyed by all.

But, alas, there is not much possibility that this will ever happen. Therefore, I have decided I would like another position in the government that we appear to be drifting toward. I would like to be Chief Arbiter of Truth and the Protector Against Hate Speech. The duties and responsibilities of this position would be to fact check and flag any statements made on social media that were contrary to the truth. This position would also be responsible for scrubbing any social media comments that are deemed to be hate speech. As this is a large task, it would require a large bureaucracy to fulfill its responsibilities. I believe that the last two decades of my observations and analysis of this phenomenon would make me eminently qualified to lead this effort.

I know that this is a huge task with heavy responsibilities, but it is a task I am willing to undertake for the benefit of all Americans. The importance and weight of this responsibility would always weigh upon me. And I would always be cognizant of the aphorism ‘fools rush in where angels fear to tread’. I would, therefore, tread very lightly and remember that it is foolish, and dangerous, to constrict the free speech rights of a people dedicated to Liberty and Freedom. I, therefore, would expect that the sum total of the truth tagging and speech scrubbing that I would act upon is zero, as zero is the proper amount of truth tagging and speech scrubbing that is appropriate in America.

06/06/20 My Coming Out of the Closet

During my Coronavirus Pandemic at home sheltering, I have had more opportunity to think and ponder on my being. One of my ruminations is on how much I love women. Not only a sexual love but the emotional and intellectual love of women. But I also realized how much I did not understand women. I, therefore, decided to self-identify as a woman to gain a better understanding of women. During this self-identification process, I realized that I was still sexually attracted to women while being a woman. Consequentially, I realized that I was also a lesbian woman. I have, therefore, decided to come out of the closet and admit to my being a lesbian.

Now that I have admitted my true being, I feel much better after my coming out of the closet as a lesbian. I would ask all to respect my decision on self-identifying as a woman and being a lesbian woman. I ask for your toleration and acceptance of my lesbianism, and to not use my being a lesbian as a basis of judgment for anything that I have written. And please remember that in any comments that you should make, you should remember that you are now speaking to a lady.

06/05/20 Indemnification

I have written a new article on “Indemnification” that examines the issue of the compensation of those who have been harmed as a result of rioting. Rioting such as we have seen as a result of the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis. The rioting that does much more harm than good, and rioting that is fraught with moral, ethical, and financial concerns.

06/04/20 Vigilantism

Some politicians have derided those persons who utilize firearms to protect themselves from looters and rioters as vigilantism. But vigilantism is when one or more persons seek out another to exact revenge or retribution for perceived injustices. However, it is not vigilantism if you are protecting your person or property, but an exercise of your natural right to afford yourself of such protection. Your first recourse should be to allow the police officers to provide such protection, but if the police officers are unable or choose not to provide this protection, then you have the natural right to protect your person or property.

When the police stand down or withdraw this protection, when other law officers release violent criminals onto the streets, when politicians do not act against looters and rioters, then they are in dereliction of their duties and responsibilities, and they are culpable for the violation of your natural rights. Consequently, they are not fit to be leaders of a people dedicated to “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”. Until the police, law officers, and politicians enforce the law, people must exercise their natural rights to preserve their freedoms and liberties.

06/03/20 Experts ought to be on tap and not on top

In 1910 the Irish periodical “The Irish Homestead” the editor, George William Russell, wrote a piece about legislation that included the following:

“Our theory, which we have often put forward, is that experts ought to be on tap and not on top. We have had during our career a long and intimate knowledge of experts, most interesting men in their own speciality to which they have devoted themselves with great industry and zeal. But outside this special knowledge they are generally as foolish and ignorant as any person one could pick up in the street, with no broad knowledge of society or the general principles of legislation.”

As can be deduced by any intelligent and critical observer, nothing has changed since this quote was originated, and I suspect that this quote has been true throughout history. Indeed, it has become even worse since the 20th century progressed. In the 21st century, the experts on top modus operandi have become entrenched. The bureaucrats, the technocrats, the policy wonks, and a host of others claiming to be experts want to be decision-makers for governmental and social policies in America. And politicians often defer to these experts to disclaim responsibility for the bad results of their decisions.

What we have all forgotten is that experts can be, and often are, wrong. Wrong because they lack sufficient knowledge of all aspects of an issue, wrong because the facts they rely on are incorrect, wrong because they have an unrealistic belief in the accuracy of their statistics and modeling, and most importantly, they are wrong because they lack wisdom. And sometimes, the experts have hidden agendas for their expert opinions. Hidden agendas to accomplish what they believe to be good for Americans, but that they believe Americans cannot fully understand the good they wish to achieve.

The reason we elect politicians should be for them to make wise judgments based on expert opinions and the voice of the people. We should also expect politicians to be leery of expert opinions and to make their own judgments. And we should expect these politicians to take responsibility for their decisions. But the American people also have a responsibility. The responsibility to elect wise politicians and hold them accountable for their decisions. If the politicians and electorate cannot take on this responsibility, then we will continue to have experts on top.

06/02/20 What if Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Used Violence?

One of the great triumphs of human rights of the latter half of the 20th century was the Civil Rights movement. This Civil Rights movement, led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was a protest against racism and bigotry that was systemic in America. It changed Americans' attitudes about black people as well as other racial groups and shamed America for its past actions of racism and bigotry. America progressed from one of bigotry and racism to an America that was by and large nonracist. Although vestiges of racism and discrimination still exist in America, when it rears its ugly head, it is condemned and prosecuted as a violation of Civil Rights, and in some cases, criminal prosecutions are initiated.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was able to accomplish this feat through non-violent protests, and in doing so, he was able to coalesce support from non-black Americans for his cause. A coalescence that was an unstoppable force for the betterment of America. The question of this chirp is, ‘Would this have been possible if violence had been utilized to archive this laudable goal?’. The answer is – of course not! Violence pits one group of people against another. Violence inevitably leads to violations of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” and the disunion of "A Civil Society". Violence never solves a problem but exacerbates the problem. And violence is often counterproductive to the goals of those who turn to violence. The only time violence is acceptable is to overthrow a government that violates the human rights of its people and to institute a just government that preserves human rights.

The racial violence we have seen in America post the Civil Rights movement has not been productive in eliminating the vestiges of racism and discrimination in America. Instead of coalescence to solve these problems, we have pitted one group of people against other groups of people. The destruction of personal property and physical injuries to some people has increased the divisions in America. It has stalled the bipartisanship needed to resolve the problems of the vestiges of racism and discrimination in America.

And this divisiveness is being manipulated by some for the purposes of their political agenda. It is much easier to stir up the mob to obtain your goals rather than appeal to the better angels of our nature. The rush to do something to solve this problem is often a rush to judgment, and the creation of unjust laws, unjust laws that often do not solve the problem but often create more divisiveness in America. Only with proper “Dialog & Debate” and “Reasoning” can we hope to resolve the problems of the vestiges of racism and discrimination that still exist in America.

This violence must stop forthwith, by whatever means legal and proper, for us to address the problems that led to the violence. The people engaging in the violence must be arrested and prosecuted, for to not do so is a violation of the Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All Americans.

06/01/20 Does Might Make Right

I have posted a new Coronavirus Pandemic Chirp “06/01/20 Does Might Make Right” that is applicable beyond the Coronavirus Pandemic. I hope that you will take the time to read and think, then act upon this concern.

05/31/20 Accountants and Bookkeepers Oh My

Many people like to deride accountants and bookkeepers as bean counters, unconcerned by the human element in their tasks. There is some truth to this aphorism, but only for those accountants and bookkeepers that have forgotten the purpose of accounting and bookkeeping. As a good accountant friend of mine has often stated, “It is not the numbers that are important, but what the numbers tell us that is important”. The numbers often tell us both good and bad things about commercial or governmental activities. If the numbers tell us good things, then we should continue doing the good things, and perhaps even try to do more of these things and do them better. If the numbers tell us bad things, then we need to correct these things or find a better way to do the bad thing. In some cases, it is not possible to fix something due to systemic or external factors, and it becomes necessary to cease doing the bad thing.

A good accountant or bookkeeper will attempt to foresee problems by analyzing the entire situation to try to help correct any bad things they may uncover. A bad accountant or bookkeeper will not foresee problems until they occur and, therefore, will not be able to correct the bad things before they negatively impact the entire situation. A bad accountant or bookkeeper will focus only on the detail of the problem without looking at the entire situation. A good accountant or bookkeeper knows that focusing on the detail of the problem often has (negative) repercussions for the entire situation.

Unfortunately, it is when we try to fix the bad things that we often run into the human element. For fixing something often has a direct impact on those people impacted by the fix. But to not fix it often has a larger human impact than if we had not fixed the problem. In correcting the bad things, people are often reassigned, reallocated, relocated, or perhaps lose their jobs. However, if you do not correct the bad things, then more people could be negatively impacted. Think about the difference between closing an underperforming division in a company and the closing of an entire company due to not correcting the bad things of the underperforming division.

We should, therefore, not deride a good accountant or bookkeeper as they are performing a very necessary function. The function of a good accountant or bookkeeper is of assuring that the good things continue unabated or fixing or ceasing to do bad things before they become undue problems. All of this is done by a good accountant or bookkeeper to assure the continued smooth operation of commercial or governmental activities. A bad accountant or bookkeeper should be reminded of the purpose of accounting and bookkeeping is to help understand the numbers and the entire situation, and try to fix any problems that can be foreseen.

05/30/20 Methinks Thou Dost Protest Too Much

With the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis, the inevitable reactions have occurred. Some of these reactions are justified, some are not, and some are absurd and counterproductive. Any deaths because of police actions are serious and worthy of an impartial investigation to determine if the police officers have acted wrongly. If an investigation determines wrongful actions, then those involved are deserving of prosecution for criminal or civil rights violations of the law.

While these investigations are being conducted, we must always be cognizant of due process and the rule of law for both the victim and the police officers involved. For without this, it is possible that a miscarriage of justice may occur. If there is a rush to judgment and charging, then it is possible for evidence or testimony to be suppressed at trial, and this could result in a miscarriage of justice for the victim. A miscarriage of justice for the police officers involved could also occur if exculpatory evidence is not obtained, overlooked, ignored, or suppressed in a rush to judgment. If the prosecutors rush to judgment, then the results could be a legal lynching. The passions of the mob cannot be satiated at the expense of due process and the rule of law. To do so is to risk a miscarriage of justice for both the victim and the police officers. It should be remembered that you cannot arrest someone that you think has violated the law unless the arrest occurs during the commission of a crime, but an arrest after the commission of a crime only occurs after legal authorities have determined a possible violation of the law. The Prima Facie case against the police officers in the George Floyd death is overwhelming, but the legal case against the police officers needs to be established, and all the evidence and testimony needs to be obtained before any arrests and prosecutions can occur. I believe that this is the reason that the arrest of the police officers in the death of George Floyd has been delayed. But these arrests should occur expeditiously after the prosecutors establish the evidence of a crime by the police officers.

As to the passions of the mob, the mob should be passionate when injustice occurs. It is the American way for a passionate mob to protest injustices. It is also, unfortunately, the American way for some mob members to become violent in their passions. But mob violence is antithetical to the principles of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” and "Justice and The Rule of Law in America". For a mob to destroy or steal the property of another, and perhaps physically harm another, is not a cry for justice but an act of revenge for perceived injustices in America. Revenge that is, indeed, counterproductive to their pleas for justice and for the righting of wrongs. It also dilutes their message and allows for some to ignore their pleas for justice as just an excuse to loot. Looting in such cases always results in the longer-lasting detriment to the community where the looting occurs. Unpunished looting and the non-protection of the safety and property of all persons is an aberrance of law and justice. As the owners of the property have paid taxes to the government, and part of such taxes is for the maintenance of law and order, they have been deprived of the protections for which they have paid. This is a breach of the compact between the people and their government, and a failure of the government to meet its duties and responsibilities.

This type of situation also brings forth the rabble-rousing of politicians and activists to decry “Racism” and “Discrimination” in American. However, these racism and discrimination cries are often not supported by facts but by emotional appeals. Racism and discrimination charges against the police that are divisive for political gain and are often disingenuous, as they are anecdotical and unsupported by facts as adumbrated in the Wikipedia article “Police use of deadly force in the United States”. These police racism and discrimination cries by politicians and activists often make the situation worse rather than correct the problems of police racism and discrimination in America. Although we have made great strides in combating police racism and discrimination in America, there is always more that can be done to combat police racism and discrimination in America. These cries of racism and discrimination increase the “Divisiveness in America“, and inhibit our ability to overcome all racism and discrimination in America.

Therefore, we should all be concerned about the death of George Floyd by police actions in Minneapolis. We should all be concerned about justice for both the victim and the police officers in this case. To not be concerned about this case is to not be concerned about Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice for All in America.

05/28/20 The Non-Apology Apology

How often have we witnessed a politician, celebrity, or another noteworthy person issue an apology for something stupid that they have said or written, or perhaps for their hypocritical actions? And how often is the apology just as offensive as the original offense? Too often to recount in this Chirp. The apology often proclaims that they were misquoted or taken out of context, or they were misunderstood even when the plain meaning was obvious. Sometimes they even resort to denial, until the evidence is definitive. They also often utilize the technique of spinning their statements as meaning something other than what was said, written, or done. They even try to deflect the criticism upon the critic or to blame a third party for their statements. They just as often say they accept responsibility for their statements, but then immediately try to negate their responsibility. The excuse that both sides do it is not an excuse, as neither side should be doing it.

This Non-Apology Apology is usually driven by their inability to admit that they erred, or to cover your ass, or simply their egotistical tendencies. However, we all should remember that all of us make mistakes throughout our lives. We should also remember that:

Perfection is reserved for God; humans should strive to do their best.
 - Mark Dawson

and

“To err is human; to forgive, divine.”
- Alexander Pope in "Essay on Criticism"

Therefore, it is always better to issue a sincere apology and ask for forgiveness. Most people are willing to forgive after a sincere apology but will not be forgiving without a sincere apology. If a politician, celebrity, or other noteworthy person issue a Non-Apology Apology, they exhibit a character flaw for which they should be rebuked.

05/27/20 Journalists Did Not Get Played, They Were Willing Players

With the journalistic false narratives (or as President Trump has labeled it “Fake News”) of the Russian Collusion, Impeachment, Michael Flynn, George Papadopoulos, Carter Page, and other personages involved with the candidate and President Trump, many have commented that the journalist got “played” by members of the Obama administration. However, they were not played, but they were willing players in this false narrative. Journalists have resorted to reporting that which they have not verified, but that which they want or hope to be true. Much of this can be attributed to grandstanding, hype, and ratings, but much of it can be attributed to the political biases of the journalists.

Many, but not all the Mainstream Media, simply parroted what they were told by the Obama officials. And the Obama officials knew that they would be willing parrots as journalists have so amply demonstrated by their other interactions with the Obama administration. The journalistic responsibility to assure the veracity of the sources and the facts were ignored and, therefore, they have failed in their responsibilities as journalists. They also exhibited no sense of skepticism, which is crucial to journalistic professionalism. Journalists have also forgotten that it is the responsibility of those making an assertion to prove their assertion, and journalists have a responsibility to hold them to account for their assertions (see my chirp of “02/05/20 Assertions are the Question”). The approaches that journalists have utilized for the above mentioned false narratives are an excellent example of “Modern Journalism”, as I have previously written.

As a result of their reporting, they have damaged or destroyed the reputations of those personages mentioned in their false narrative. Some have even been put in legal jeopardy, and many have been financially harmed by these false narratives. Not only have they damaged personages, but they have politically inhibited the duly elected President Trump administration. Political debates on the issues and concerns of our time are a requirement of a robust democracy. To examine the pros and cons of the issue is to, hopefully, make for better laws and the administration of laws. But when this debate centers around false narratives, then we can expect that not much good will take place and, indeed, it may be harmful to our society.

These journalism actions and inactions have also emboldened Democrat politicians to make false statements, as they can expect journalists to not challenge their statements. The outright lies of Congressman Adam Schiff, the misrepresentations of Congressman Jerry Nadler, and the outrageous assertions of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority leader Chuck Schumer were for the purpose of damaging President Trump and his administration. They were not for the purpose of challenging the Trump administration, but for the purpose of impeding the Trump administration. These statements were much more than lies, as they were often “Damned Lies”, as explained in my article “Lies and Beliefs”. Some of these false assertions have also crossed over the line into Slanders and Libels, which are difficult to adjudicate as the Constitution affords protection against Congressional members in the performance of their duties. However, journalists must accurately and fully report these false assertions to the public so that the electorate can pass judgment on these false statements, and the politicians who make these false assertions.

This also begs the question of ‘What other reporting is a false narrative?’. Regarding the Trump administration reporting, we can expect that much of it is a false narrative. I have no problem with journalists challenging the Trump administration, but these challenges need to be based on facts and “Reasoning”, and not false narratives nor emotional appeals. I do have a big problem with journalists not challenging the opponents of the Trump administration. For not challenging the opponents of the Trump administration is to allow for false narratives to be regarded as truths. These journalistic actions and inactions also endanger our republic. If the electorate is swayed by false narratives, they cannot make responsible electoral decisions. And if they cannot trust government officials in the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches of government because of these false narratives, then proper and just governance is not possible.

Consequently, modern journalism has become not one of reporting but parroting a story that they want to be true. If journalists can be played or be players, they are not meeting their professional responsibilities as journalists. As such, modern journalism is not a bastion for the protection of the people from unconstitutional or illegal governmental actions, but one of supporting governmental actions for which they concur or opposing governmental actions for which they disagree.

05/25/20 The Party of Hamilton, Not Jefferson-Jackson

Political parties evolve and change policies as the times change. Unfortunately, their monikers tend to remain the same. The Republicans are often called The Party of Lincoln, while the Democrats are often called The Party of Jefferson-Jackson. Yet, these monikers to not reflect the policies of these personages, nor could they as the current times are much different than the times of these personages. Yet some general principles of governance remain. Whether a society is to be governed by a top-down or bottom-up approach is one of these general principles. In America, this is reflected by the precept of a strong national government involved in the everyday affairs of the people or the precept of a strong local/state government that is involved in the everyday affairs of the people. This dichotomy is reflected in the policy positions and organization of the Democrat and Republican parties.

The Democrats believe in a strong Federal government that has direct interactions with the people of the country, while the Republicans believe that strong interaction with the people should occur at the Local then State governments. As such, the Democrats more closely reflect the governing principles of Alexander Hamilton, while the Republicans more closely reflect the governing principles of Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson, while the governing principles of Abraham Lincoln are often between these dichotomies.

The tensions between these two dichotomies can often be advantageous for governance, but disadvantageous for the natural rights of the people. A top-down governing structure is advantageous for the implementation of social policy goals, but the effectuation of this implementation may infringe on the natural rights of some or all the people. A bottom-up governing structure makes it more difficult to achieve social policy goals but affords more protection for the natural rights of some or all the people. The history of mankind has shown that top-down governance results in monarchy, tyranny, rulers, or other forms of oppressive governance that is unresponsive to the natural rights of the people. A bottom-up governing structure often results in anarchy, which leads to the violation of the natural rights of the people. Our Constitution was formulated to try to balance the needs of governance with the natural tights of the people. It is important that we maintain this balance for the wellbeing of our society.

If one side or the other gains dominance of governance, then the other side must be ineffectual. This dominance is not only in the dominance of governance but the dominance within a party. When a party becomes rigid in their policies, they often become intolerant of any opposition to their policies. When they become rigid, they often institute a power structure within their party to maintain the discipline to advance their policy positions, and they exhibit little or no cooperation nor bipartisanship with those that would disagree with them. The party becomes one of rulers, rather than of leaders, to achieve their policy goals.

And so, it is, with the current Democrat Party. They believe that their policy positions are so morally right and intellectually superior that they cannot cooperate or compromise, nor exhibit bipartisanship, with anything or anyone that differs with their policies. Nor do they feel constrained by the limitations of government as embodied in the United States Constitution if it would interfere with obtaining their social policies. It should be remembered that no side is morally right nor intellectually superior, and the Constitution was created to protect the principles of “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All”.  It is for these principles that our society was formulated and endures.

On this Memorial Day, we should remember the ultimate sacrifice of those that gave their lives for these principles. We should also remember the words of Abraham Lincoln, delivered at the Dedication of the Cemetery at the Battlefield of Gettysburg:

“It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion - that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom - and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.“

05/24/20 The Sins of the Past

In today’s America, we are as concerned about putting right the sins of our past as we are concerned about doing right in the present and future. But the sins of the past are of the past and are often impossible to indemnify in the present or future. The sins of the present need to be put right and not allowed in the future.

You should indemnify the individuals harmed by present sins, rather than indemnifying a group of descendants harmed by our past sins. For if you indemnify a group, it is usually to the detriment of another group. If you elevate or give preferential treatment to one group over another group, then you are demoting or discriminating against another group. As taught in the Bible, the sins of the fathers are not borne by the sons. Therefore, the burdens of the sins of the past are to be borne by those people in the past who have sinned, and not by those people of the present who have not sinned. “Equality for all” should be the bedrock principle in our governmental policies and how we deal with each other.

For more than fifty years, we in America have been trying to indemnify descendants of people in the present who have not been directly harmed by the sins of our past. This has led to feelings of victimization, despair, and despondence by those group members whose forefathers suffered by the sins of our past. It has also led them to feel that they are disenfranchised and that they cannot be contributing members of our society. These feelings had led to schisms in our society to the detriment of all of society.

Instead of anguishing over the sins of our past, we should learn from them and attempt to not sin in our present and future. We do this by striving to preserve and protect our “Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All” and providing opportunities for all. Let us, therefore, strive to assure that all Americans have an equal opportunity to succeed and are not sinned against in our present and future. We have not always been perfect in this, nor are we perfect in this today, nor will we be perfect in this in the future, but we should always remember that:

Perfection is reserved for God; humans should strive to do their best.
  - Mark Dawson

05/23/20 Courts, Not Star Chambers

With the prosecutor dropping the charges against Michael Flynn, and Judge Emmet Sullivan subsequent actions of appointing an amicus curiae (friend of the court) judge to advise him along with allowing other amicus briefs the question arises 'What is the role and focus of a judge in judicial proceedings?'. First and foremost, a judge needs to be neutral, favoring neither the defendant nor the prosecution. The judge needs to assure that the judicial rules of procedure and evidence be adhered too. A judge also must not interject their beliefs and opinions into the legal proceedings. All their judicial decisions must be made in accordance with these considerations.

Sadly, Judge Emmet Sullivan has failed to meet these obligations. His previous statements made during the proceedings have shown that he is not neutral. His actions in appointing amicus curiae, which are not authorized in criminal cases as determined by previous judicial rulings on procedures and affirmed by Supreme Court decisions, are contradictory to criminal judicial proceedings, as explained by Andrew C. McCarthy and Jonathan Turley. He has even issued rulings that contradict his own previous rulings in other cases. His actions are more of a Star Chamber - A former English court that became notorious for its arbitrary methods and severe punishments – than a court of law. Equal justice under law is jeopardized if this is to be allowed.

An emergency Writ of Mandamus compelling him to execute his duties has been filed. Based on his words and deeds during this judicial proceeding, this writ should be granted forthwith. The integrity of the court is a stake, and if his amicus actions are allowed, then established judicial procedures are upended with deleterious impacts on future judicial proceedings.

Also, sadly, his words and deeds are illuminative of the politicization of courts that we have observed in the last several decades, as outlined in my article "Judges, Not Lords". This politicization needs to end for us to ensure that our "Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All" reign supreme in America.

05/22/20 The Real Election Collusion

Much has been said about the allegations of the Russian influence on the 2016 election, and the collusion of the Russians with the Trump campaign. Practically all of what has been said has turned out to be baseless and untrue. These comments by the Mainstream Media, Progressive Commentators, Mainstream Cultural Media, and Democrat politicians were not for the purpose of uncovering the truth. They were, instead, for the purpose of influencing elections and for the purpose of "Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)" the Trump administration. The following examples are indicative of their attempts to influence elections:

All of these influencing actions had a far greater and more negative impact on our election than anything the Russians’ did to influence our elections. And all of this could not have been possible if not for the cooperation and collusion of the Mainstream Media, Progressive Commentators, Mainstream Cultural Media, and Democrat politicians. The failure of accurate and factual reporting, challenging journalistic questioning of the opponents of President Trump, and outright maleficence by the parties involved in this collusion poses a danger to our republic. Influencing an election through facts and truth is laudable, while influencing an election through falsehoods and deceptions is despicable. Opinions, if based on facts and truths are acceptable, but opinions not based on facts and truths are reprehensible.

Consequently, the Real Election Collusion is between the Democrats and the Mainstream Media to influence the 2020 elections against President Trump. If such collusion is successful, then we have a crisis in our republic. A crisis of lack of information, misinformation, and outright lies and deceptions that do not allow the voters to make informed decisions in the 2020 elections.

05/21/20 Was It Sabotage or Was It A Consequence?

Recently, a New Jersey gym owner defied the Governors’ order and reopened his business after he took precautions to ensure the health and safety of his staff and members from the Coronavirus. Two days after opening the gym, the toilets overflowed, and he had to close the gym to clean up the mess it made. This begs the question about the overflow, ‘Was It Sabotage or Was It A Consequence?’. Did some government officials order the sewage lines closed, or did the sewer lines clog because of disuse during the lockdown?

I can envision that the sewer line sediments dried and hardened from a lack of water flow during the lockdown, causing blockage when they began to be reused. However, if it was sabotage, then this bespeaks of an out of control government, and the deliberate destruction of personal property without due process of law. If it was a consequence of disuse, then we must ask ourselves what other physical consequences may result from the prolonged lockdown of a business. Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning (HVAC), electrical and mechanical equipment, water line cracks or joints leaks, doors and windows being stuck from disuse or structural settlements, and other potential physical problems may result from disuse. All of this could take time and monies to repair, time and monies that business owners can ill afford after the prolonged lockdown.

These problems would be a result of “The Law of Unintended Consequences” from the lockdown. This also raises the question of what other unintended consequences are the result of a prolonged lockdown? Answers to these questions will have unintended repercussions that will impact the reopening of our economy. All locked down business owners must be aware of potential physical problems from restarting their business after the lockdown, and perhaps indemnified for the repair costs incurred because of the lockdown.

05/20/20 Respect vs. Respectfully

I have often mentioned that we should treat all people politely and respectfully. In doing so, the question arises if we should respect all people? The answer is – No, not all people are deserving of respect, but all persons should be treated politely and respectfully.

People who live a legal, moral, and ethical life are deserving of respect. People who have not lived a legal, moral, and ethical life, but have repented and reformed their life, ae also worthy of our respect. Respect is also earned by the accomplishment of a person, depending on the manner of the accomplishment. o be accomplished through legal, moral, and ethical means is worthy of respect, but any other means is worthy of disrespect.

People who treat you and others respectfully are deserving of respectful treatment. You should also remember that being Polite and Respectful is a reflection on your character and not a statement of respect for the other person you treat respectfully.

05/19/20 Movie Commentaries

I have created a web page "Movie Commentaries" that contains my comments and critiques of individual movies that I believe have been overlooked or underrated by the public and movie critics. When I watch a movie, I first watch it for its entertainment value, including the acting and supporting cast, the direction, the cinematography, and the music score. Afterward, I think about the underlying meaning of a movie. I prefer movies that have a very human element in them. Movies that deal with human passions or human conflicts. As such, the scripts for the movies I prefer are essential. Without a good script, it cannot be a good movie. If it does not have a good dialogue, or the dialogue doesn't ring true, then it cannot make my list. For more Movies and Television that I believe meets this criteria I would direct you to my article “That's Entertainment”. I make no claims that all these movies are great movies (although many of them are great), but I do claim that they are enjoyable movies.

05/18/20 Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchical Society

Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchy Society, and variations of this statement, have been utilized by critics of our society to besmirch America and Americans. Usually spoken so as to fundamentally transform our society to the critics’ vision of a more just society. A more just society is a laudable goal, but the means to achieve a more just society often results in more injustice and most often ends in failure. A failure that is due to the critics not recognizing human nature or human history. If you do not recognize human nature or learn from the lessons of human history, then any change you may make is doomed to failure. My new article, “Oppressive Patriarchal Hierarchy Society”, examines this topic in more detail.

05/17/20 Truth, Honesty, Character, and Courage Within Ourselves

Truth, Honesty, Character, and Courage are essential to becoming fully human. For without these items, you cannot be fully functional within yourselves and within society.

Without discovering the facts, you cannot discover the truth, and without applying “Reasoning” to the facts, you cannot reach the truth. And this is true not only for topics, issues, and concerns, but for the truth about yourself, the truth about your family, the truth about your friends, the truth about your neighbors, the truth about your co-workers, and the truth about your society. Truth based not on what you want to believe but truth based on the facts and reasoning. For any other means of reaching the truth is not truth but an illusion. When discussing the truth that you have uncovered, you should always keep in mind:

Doubt a little of your own infallibility.
  - Benjamin Franklin

and

You'll never get confused if you simply tell the truth. Then you don't have to remember what you have said, and you never forget what you have said. And you won't get in trouble for telling a lie if you have told the truth.
  - Mark Dawson

We must be honest about ourselves, about others, and about society to become a better person and assist others and society in becoming better. We must honestly examine our own shortcomings, failures, and flaws before we can become honest about ourselves or society. We all have shortcomings, failures, and flaws that we need to correct, and we need to be honest about ourselves before we are honest about others and society. However, be forewarned that honesty has a price. The price of:

Man is always prey to his truths.
Once he has admitted them,

he cannot free himself from them.
  - Albert Camus

We must have the character to act upon the truths and honesty that we have uncovered. The character to be true unto yourself. The character to “Be the Better Person”. Character in your public and private life. The character to not only act legally but to do the moral and ethical thing in all that you do. Not only the big things in your life but the little things as well. For the accumulation of little things builds your character for the bigger things. Do not be a character but be a person of character. And remember:

Our character is what we do when we think no one is looking.
  -  H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Courage to do the right thing is required to be fully functional within yourselves and within society. For without courage, it matters not how much Truth, Honesty, and Character you exhibit. Courage to speak and act upon the Truth, Honesty, Character you have accumulated. As has been truly said:

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
- Edmund Burke.

Not only will evil triumph but also the unjust, immoral, and unethical behavior of others will triumph without you exhibiting courage in the face of their misdeeds. Also, remember:

True Courage is doing the right thing, at the right time, regardless of personal consequences.
   - Mark Dawson

If we build our life on Truth, Honesty, Character, and Courage, we will build a better life for ourselves and for all.

05/16/20 Voter Fraud

Every citizen of the United States who is legally eligible to vote should be permitted to vote. And no impediment of their legal right to vote should be permitted as I have stated in my Observation “Political Issues - Voting“. Any person or persons who would impede a person’s vote needs to be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. And all governmental laws, rules, regulations, and procedures should be crafted to assure a person’s legal right to vote. Without the integrity of the vote, you have corrupted the democratic process and the will of the people. Regarding this, a key phrase in the above statement is “legally eligible to vote”. If a person is not legally eligible to vote, they need to be stopped from voting. For if they are allowed to vote, then the vote they illegal cast negates the vote of a legally eligible voter on the opposite side of an issue or candidate, which effectively disenfranchises the legally eligible voter. And this violation should be treated as harshly as you would treat a person or persons who impedes a legal voter.

Unfortunately, the Democratic Party seems to not be too concerned about the legality of the voter. While Democrats have been vigorous in their opposition to impediments to voting, they have hampered efforts to assure the legality of a voter. They often claim that this is to assure that there is no “Voter Suppression” occurring. But “Voter Suppression” is different than “legally eligible to vote”. They should concentrate their efforts on “Protecting Your Right to Vote” through appropriate legislation and enforcement. To not assure the “legally eligible to vote” is to allow for an unfair election and the corruption of the democratic process. It also places the illegal voter “Above the Law” in that they can violate the law by casting an illegal vote.

As a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic, many politicians have expressed concern about health safety in voting in the upcoming election. And many Democratic politicians have suggested mail-in votes as a safety measure. Many States have already instituted Mail-in voting with mixed results.  As RealClear Politics has reported, “28 Million Mail-In Ballots Went Missing in Last Four Elections”. The missing ballots amount to nearly one in five of all absentee ballots and ballots mailed to voters residing in states that do elections exclusively by mail. Surely, such a large number of missing ballots may have had an impact on the outcome of many elections.

Article I Section. 4. Of the U.S. Constitution states:

“The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators.”

Therefore, it is up to the State Legislators to determine the election procedures. But this does not give them the right to institute election procedures that are susceptible to fraud. The election procedures in many states have been changed to make it easier to vote. Mail-in voting, early voting, election day voter registration, registering to vote outside of the registrars’ offices, and more have been instituted for the laudable goal to make it easier to vote. However, good intentions do not make for good laws, as many of these changes have also made it easier to commit election fraud. Voter fraud than can, and sometimes, change the outcome of an election. Fraud that anecdotally tends to favor the Democrat candidates. There is no proof of this fraud, as such proofs are exceeding difficult to obtain, but difficult to obtain does not mean that they do not occur. Remember, "Absence of Evidence is Not Evidence of Absence". We, therefore, should not change our election laws on the assumption that if you cannot prove voter fraud has occurred or will occur, you can presume that it has or will not occurred, and change the election laws based on this assumption.

Until we can assure the integrity of the vote, we need to be very careful and circumspect in the changes to our voting laws. We should also reexamine all current election laws to assure that only legally eligible voters are registered and vote, as well as for the protection against election fraud. For making it easier to vote often makes it easier to commit voter fraud.

05/15/20 Gettysburg Address in Words and in Crux

In my discussion with my friends on the topics I have written about some of my friends have requested that I skip my words and reasoning and proceed to the crux of the matter. I am loath to do this as I have explained in my Article “A Philosophical Approach”. Rather than recapitulate the reasons for my loathing, I thought that I could humorously demonstrate this point by utilizing an illustration of the Gettysburg Address, in both words and in the crux.

First, the words and the reasoning:

“Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate - we cannot consecrate - we cannot hallow - this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion - that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom - and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
-
President Abraham Lincoln - November 19, 1863

And now the crux in a PowerPoint Presentation:







PowerPoint presentation developed by Peter Norvig.

I think that we can all agree that the words and reasoning have a much more significant intellectual and emotional impact. It is for this reason that I prefer to discuss my words and reasoning rather than go to the crux of the matter.

05/14/20 Lawgiver-in-Chief – Part II

As I mentioned in my Chirp of “05/12/20 Lawgiver-in-Chief – Part I”, Nancy Pelosi does not legislate but utilizes an autocratic approach of rulership. I also mentioned that major legislation is written in secret by herself and a small cadre of advisors and Democrat legislators. This legislation also contains extensive spending or governmental actions on her other social policy goals unrelated to the goals of the legislation. Her current proposed legislation for Coronavirus Pandemic relief (the “Heroes Act”) is a perfect example of her approach to legislating. This three trillion-dollar, crafted in secret, spending bill, is so loaded with unrelated spending, tax reliefs, pork barrel allocations, special interests’ provisions, and unrelated social engineering as to be mind-boggling audacious. There is neither the time or space for me to unpeel these items, and I will leave it to other persons more qualified to illuminate the problems with this legislation.

Consequently, this boondoggle legislation does more harm than good to our society. As too her reasoning of why this legislation is important for Coronavirus Pandemic relief, I am reminded of the quote:

“I think we ought to exercise one of the sovereign prerogatives of philosophers— that of laughter”
 - Charles L. Black

This bill could not have been a more satirical parody of what I had written about her approach to legislation. When she proposes serious legislation, done through normal legislative procedures, then she should be taken seriously. Until this is done, we should utilize our prerogative to laugh. Consequently, her proposed legislation should be strongly criticized and ridiculed, and then be consigned to the dustbin of history.

05/13/20 The Most Consequential Election of Our Times

In the last several decades we have heard the hue and cry that this election is the most consequential election of our time. This is because governmental actions have become so intrusive in our political, social, and economic spheres of life that this intrusion makes for every election to be consequential. It is, indeed, a sad state of affairs that in a society dedicated to Freedom and Liberty that this governmental intrusion has become significant. For such governmental intrusion often encroaches on the Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights of the individual.

However, the upcoming election may indeed be the most crucial election of our time. This is a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic and our responses to this pandemic. These responses have illuminated the differences in the approach to governance between the rights of the individual and the needs of society. Politicians on both sides have revealed their true stripes on this question. The President, Governors, Mayors, Judges, and other governmental officials’ responses to the Coronavirus Pandemic responses demonstrated their priorities and their approach to governance.  

Executive orders without legislative approvals, executive orders that do not take into consideration our rights, and executive orders sans significant judicial reviews reveal a propensity for rulership rather than leadership. Occasionally, our rights need to be curtailed in an emergency, but their curtailment must be limited in scope and of short duration. This curtailment must cease as quickly as possible, and the people harmed by such curtailment must be indemnified for the harm caused by the curtailment. Executive orders that extend weeks or months are beyond the scope of Executive powers, and are often injurious to the economy and deleterious to our rights, as outlined in my Coronavirus Pandemic Chirps of “05/04/20 First Came Rights” and “05/07/20 Natural Rights, Human Rights, and Fundamental Rights”. If such Executive powers are necessary, they should be preceded by quickened Legislative approval and expedited Judicial review. To not do so is to allow for arbitrary and capricious Executive authority.

In general, the Republican leaders have less supportive of, and more concerned about, these executive orders. Democratic leaders, on the other hand, tend to support these executive orders and seem not so concerned about their impacts on our rights or our economy. It is also true that the most restrictive executive orders originated from Democrat politicians (although some Republicans have done so). As to the argument that Democrat leaders are more concerned about our lives and safety I would respond to this argument by directing you to my Coronavirus Pandemic Chirp “05/03/20 Wait Until It’s Safe”. Both sides are concerned about our lives and safety, but only one side has exhibited concerns about our Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights as well as the harmful economic impacts of our responses. And all of these concerns need to be addressed to appropriately respond to the Coronavirus Pandemic emergency.

In this next election, and subsequent elections, we shall choose whether we want leaders or rulers. We will decide whether the rights of the individual are subordinate to the needs of society, and if government has control of our economy. If we choose leaders then we will preserve our Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights. If we choose rulers then we shall be subservient to governmental powers. We need to choose wisely in these elections, and with consideration about the future course of our society. As for me, I will decide based on the current actions of our politicians, and whether they have exhibited leadership rather than rulership.

05/12/20 Lawgiver-in-Chief - Part I

Nancy Pelosi is the Speaker of the House, not the Lawgiver in Chief. Her actions, since obtaining the Speakership, have demonstrated that she is not interested in legislating but in utilizing an autocratic approach to leadership. Major legislation is written in secret by herself and a small cadre of advisors and Democrat legislators. She then presents this legislation to the House for an up or down vote, not for legislative drafting and review. This is exhibited most notoriously in her statement, “You have to pass it to see what’s in it.” in the Obamacare legislation and in the crafting of the Coronavirus Pandemic relief bills. She seems more concerned with playing the blame game, as expressed in my Coronavirus Pandemic Chirp  “05/02/20 To Play the Blame Game or to Learn from Experience”, than correcting the issues and problems. She also appoints Democrat members to key House Committees that will recapitulate, rather than review and modifying the legislation that she proposes. She decides what and what will not be investigated by the House committees, and the parameters of the investigation. These investigative parameters are often constrictive to play the blame game rather than uncover the full extent of the problem and propose legislation to correct the problem.

House rules are promulgated to achieve her goals that are contrary to the historical rules and precedents of the House of Representatives, most notoriously in the Impeachment of President Trump, as espoused in my articles “The true meaning of the Senate vote on the Impeachment of President Trump” and “Impeachment Consequences”. These rules are also contrary to "The Rule of Law in Non-Judicial Proceedings". The Coronavirus Pandemic legislation and other legislation she proposes contains extensive spending or governmental actions on her other social policy goals unrelated to the Coronavirus Pandemic (see my Coronavirus Pandemic Chirp “04/01/20 Politics and A Serious Crisis Go to Waste”), or to the goals of the other legislation. Throughout these actions, no Republican legislators are involved in this process, and no Republican legislative involvement is allowed.

Her dismissive attitudes to those that disagree with her, and to the journalists who occasionally dispute her, are another indication of her autocratic approach. These dismissive attitudes are also an attempt to stifle opposition to her actions, rather than offer an explanation or justification for her actions. Her negotiations with the Senate are more intimidation than they are negotiations. Her autocratic approach to the Senate is best expressed in the idiom “My way or the highway” and in an unspoken ultimatum of "take it or leave it". If she cannot get her way in the Senate, she threatens to hold up or stop the legislation. Legislation that is crucial to not only our current Coronavirus Pandemic and its economic impacts, but to other legislation that is necessary and needful.

Consequently, under her Speakership, there is no representative democracy, but only one-person rule. The peoples' voice, through their elective representatives, is muted. A muting that also makes it very difficult for voters to make an informed judgment as to who to vote for in the next election. It is not leadership but rulership that she is exhibiting. All of this is contrary to a representative government and is antithetical to the principles of the Constitution.

05/11/20 It’s Not Treason, It’s Sedition

With the release of some of the documentation regarding the Russian Collusion investigations (including the Michael Flynn prosecution), which reveals possible illegal activities of the FBI and some Justice Department officials, many have described their actions as “Treason”. If these allegations are true, their actions were not Treasonous, but they were Seditious.

Article III Section. 3. Of the United States Constitution defines Treason as:

“Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.”

As such, their actions were not treasonous as they do not meet this definition. However, their actions were seditious as they were illegal actions demonstrating resistance to lawful authority and the undertaking of unlawful machinations by government personnel, which tended to cause the disruption or overthrow of the government and the violation of the Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights of their targets. Sedition is a more apropos description of what they were doing.

Their alleged actions were an assault on "Justice and The Rule of Law in America" by people who swore an oath to uphold and administer the law. In doing so, they abridged or violated the Constitution of the United States. These actions make them dangerous to the principles of "Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice for All". Their higher loyalty should have been to the United States Constitution and its principles, rather than what they believed was best for the country. An individual or group of individuals within the government cannot determine by themselves as to what they believe is best for the country. That is up to the American people to decide, by their duly elected or appointed officials of the United States.

Resistance to governmental authority in a democratic and duly elected and the instituted government is an acceptable response for a free people if it is done lawfully. If resistance is done unlawfully, then prosecutions are warranted for the offenders. Resistance to a government that is undemocratic or tyrannical is a duty of the people so oppressed. Resistance by government officials and employees in a democracy, in the performance of their duties and responsibilities, is unacceptable. When you are a government official or employee in a democracy, you give up your right to resist when you are performing your governmental duties and responsibilities. All governmental officials and employees have a duty to carry out all the lawful actions of the government. If they believe them to be unlawful actions, they need to challenge these actions with the proper oversight authorities (i.e., Legal Counsels, Inspector Generals, Review Boards, etc.), or by reporting these actions to Legislative authorities for their consideration, or, as a final resort challenge them in a court of law. They can also speak out after they leave their place of employment, consistent within the boundaries of their employment constraints. But they cannot resist what they believe are unlawful actions in the performance of their duties and responsibilities. However, they can resign their position and then resist what they believe are unlawful actions by the government. To have such resistance in a democracy, by government officials and employees in the performance of their duties and responsibilities, is an act of sedition.

As to the actions of government officials and employees in the Russian Collusion investigations, they should be investigated to determine if they were unlawful actions, and if it is so determined, they should be prosecuted. If found guilty, they should be appropriately punished for their machinations. If guilty, their machinations were an assault on our Human, Constitutional, and Civil Rights, and they should be punished to the maximum extent of the law, for they have maximally assaulted the rights of all the American people.

05/10/20 My Truth

Many times, you will hear someone claim that something is “My Truth”. However, there is no such thing as my truth. The truth is based on facts and “Reasoning”, for without facts and reasoning, you cannot reach the truth. When someone claims my truth, they mean my experience. My experience is a historical statement and not a statement of truth. The facts that led to my experience may be true, and many times they are not true as the entire circumstances may be unknown, but they are not “The Truth”. For the truth is more than true statements.

It is never possible to claim truth without the facts being correct. Once you obtain the correct facts and apply sound reasoning, you may be able to reach the truth. However, your facts could be incorrect or incomplete, or your reasoning could be faulty, in which case the truth you conclude would be wrong.

Consequently, anyone who claims, “My Truth”, is not cognizant of “The Truth”, and most assuredly, they have not obtained the correct facts or applied sound reasoning. Therefore, you can confidently ignore or reject “My Truth” as “The Truth”.

05/09/20 Speaking Truth to Power

Many people like to clothe themselves in the robe of honor of “Speaking Truth to Power”. But let us remember that these robes only exist if there is truth. And the truth is based on facts and “Reasoning”, for without facts and reasoning you cannot reach the truth. If you do not have the truth, then your robes are like the Emperors New Clothing – an illusion. Therefore, you must always examine the truth before you allow someone to clothe themselves in speaking truth to power. As for me, I am more interested in speaking truth, rather than truth to power.

05/08/20 Social Justice

“You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor.”
- Leviticus 19:15 ESV

Equality under the Law has been recognized since Biblical time as necessary to achieve Justice. And without justice, there can be no Freedom or Liberty. All must be treated as equals under the law. This means that within the jurisdiction of the law, all must be treated equally. It does not mean that each jurisdiction must apply the same laws as another jurisdiction (i.e., a traffic violation within a jurisdiction must be applied equally within the jurisdiction, but another jurisdiction traffic law cannot be applied to any other jurisdiction).

When you place an adjective in front of the word “Justice” you no longer have true Justice- you have favoritism (i.e., “Adjective Justice”). Adjectives such as social justice, environmental justice, workers justice, gender justice, tax-payer Justice, and voter justice, to name a few, require one party to be favored over another. Favoritism destroys the concept of “Equal Justice Under Law” and erodes Liberty and Freedom to the point where it is a meaningless concept. Within the judicial process, all must be treated as equals.

05/07/20 Natural Rights, Human Rights, and Fundamental Rights

In my writings, I often reference Natural Rights and Human Rights, and occasionally reference Fundamental Rights. But the question is, what are the differences between these rights? Natural Rights and Human Rights are different terms for the same thing. Fundamental Rights are those Natural Rights and Human Rights that are enumerated in our Constitution, as constituted mainly in the Bill of Rights -- the first ten amendments, and the 14th amendment to the Constitution. Natural Rights were mostly utilized by our Founding Fathers and several generations prior and preceding them. Gradually the term Human Rights superseded the term Natural Rights. Fundamental Rights is the term utilized in our Judicial system to reference Human Rights enshrined in our Constitution. However, our Human Rights are not limited to our Fundamental Rights, as the 9th Amendment to the Constitution makes abundantly clear.

Natural Rights and Human Rights are integral to each person, and they are too numerous to list. The anti-slavery crusader Lysander Spooner would explain it thusly: “A man’s natural rights are his own, against the whole world; and any infringement of them is equally a crime, whether committed by one man, or by millions; whether committed by one man, calling himself a robber, ... or by millions, calling themselves a government.”

Natural rights collectively constitute the moral ability and sovereign authority of every human being to make personal choices, if these personal choices do infringe on the Human Rights of others. And these Human Rights are free from government interference or government permission. They are essential to assuring our "Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All".

Occasionally, Human Rights need to be curtailed in an emergency, but their curtailment must be limited in scope and of short duration. This curtailment must cease as quickly as possible, and the people harmed by such curtailment must be indemnified for the harm caused by the curtailment. To not do so is to allow for the infringement of Human Rights for specious reasons. It is a Human Right for the people to protest these curtailments and seek to redress these curtailments. To prohibit these protests is to institute tyrannical rule over the people. We also should always remember the words of Benjamin Franklin:

"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

Let us, therefore, be incredibly careful and circumspect when we think about curtailing Human Rights.

For more on these Fundamental Rights in regard to the Coronavirus Pandemic, I would direct you to the “U.S. Constitution shredded by dangerous elected officials” by Judge Andrew P. Napolitano.

05/02/20 Short-Term and Long-Term Memory Loss

There is an affliction infecting many politicians, leaders, commentators, and journalists, Short-Term and Long-Term Memory Loss, that has become predominant as a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic. My chirp of “01/17/20 Marque de Queensberry Rules vs. a Barroom Brawl” is one of the manifestations of short-term memory loss. The other manifestations of this affliction are the inability to recall the previous statements or actions by politicians, leaders, commentators, and journalists that conflict with their current statements.

When politicians, leaders, and commentators suffer short-term or long-term memory loss it is usually because of political gamesmanship, political gamesmanship that has afflicted politicians, leaders, and commentators for time immemorial. It is the tool and trade of politicians, leaders, and commentators for the purposes of gaining and retaining power. In the past, the cure for this affliction was honest journalism that exposes their short-term or long-term memory loss.

When a journalist suffers short-term or long-term memory loss, they become instruments of propaganda and are dangerous to society. The people no longer have the ability to critique a politician, leader, or commentator, based on their past and present statements and actions, except by researching their statements and actions on their own volition. Research that is impracticable given the time and effort that would be required. This short-term or long-term memory loss by journalists undercuts the people’s ability to make rational decisions and wise choices as outlined in my Coronavirus Pandemic Chirp of “04/05/20 The Madness of Crowds and Their Manipulators”.

It is essential to combat short-term or long-term memory loss, as people need to make a judgment on the qualifications of their politicians, leaders, and commentators. Judgments that are based on their past and present statements and actions. All politicians, leaders, and commentators make mistakes, as they are human, and humans make mistakes. However, the quantity and caliber of their mistakes are essential in deciding their future fitness to hold elective office or be in positions of leadership, or to provide commentation. It is fine for a politician, leader, or commentator to change their mind, as long as they explain the reasoning for changing their mind. For as a wise old sage has said:

“For having lived long, I have experienced many instances of being obliged by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important subjects, which I once thought right, but found to be otherwise. It is therefore that the older I grow, the more apt I am to doubt my own judgment, and to pay more respect to the judgment of others.”
  - Benjamin Franklin

For politicians, leaders, and commentators to change their mind, without explaining their reasoning, is often an indicator of political gamesmanship. The reasoning for changing their minds is often an indicator of the intelligence or wisdom of the politicians, leaders, and commentators. That is why journalists need to critique the past and present statements and actions of politicians, leaders, and commentators and require that politicians, leaders, and commentators explain their reasoning for a change of mind. A journalist has the duty to expose the "Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors" of political gamesmanship, and utilize the standards of “Dialog & Debate” to critique the statements and actions of politicians, leaders, and commentators.

For if the people have no rational and historical basis for judging politicians, leaders, and commentators, they cannot make an intelligent or wise decision on whom they wish to be their elected politicians or leaders, and which commentators they need to heed.

05/01/20 Think – Not Decide

Many critics would point out that I don’t provide sufficient information on a topic to assist in making a decision, to which I would plead – “Guilty”. There are two reasons for this. The first is that I know that I do not have enough knowledge, experience, or skills to provide detailed information. That is why I often hyperlink to web articles or provide book references that provide more detailed information. The second reason why is that my goal is not to provide information to reach a decision, but to provide enough information for the reader to think about, and perhaps research, the topic.

My secondary goal is to illuminate the core issues and concerns about the topic and to remove the "Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors" surrounding the topic. I utilize “Reasoning” rather than emotional responses when examining a topic, and I also utilize my guidelines on “Dialog & Debate” when writing on a topic. Being succinct in my writings is one of my goals, but discovering the truth is my ultimate objective.

As to my qualification to comment on a topic, I would respond that I am a thinking human being, that knows and applies “Reasoning” to my thoughts and someone who examines and researches a topic before commenting on a topic. Everybody brings the own intellect, knowledge, experience, and perspective to a discussion. A thoughtful person tries to reason outside of these factors to reach the truth. Hopefully, my thoughts will allow the reader to think and discover the truth about the topics I discuss, and help guide them in deciding on their own thoughts and reasoning.

04/30/20 Appeals to Authority

During our dialogs, disputations, and debates with others, we often resort to Appeals to Authority. Yet, Appeals to Authority is a common type of “Formal fallacy” (and “List of logical fallacies“), fallacies as outlined in my article on "Reasoning". When writers or speakers use appeal to authority, they are claiming that something must be true because it is believed by someone who said to be an "authority" on the subject. Whether the person is actually an authority or not, the logic is unsound. Instead of presenting actual evidence, the argument just relies on the credibility of the "authority." As such, it is not possible for someone to refute the argument without knowing and refuting the authority's argument. We also have as “Cognitive bias” (and “List of Cognitive Biases“), as also outlined in my article on "Reasoning", that makes us susceptible to an Appeal to Authority.

Scientists, Statisticians, Mathematicians, Academics, Economists, Pollsters, Commentators, or anyone educated or accredited in some field of knowledge. i.e., "authorities" who are making a statement or expressing an opinion are all human, and all humans make mistakes or can be just plain wrong, as outlined in my article "Oh What A Tangled Web We Weave".

Using an Appeal to Authority during the course of dialogue or debate is usually an indicator of the unreasonableness or weakness of your argument. It also tends to absolve the person making the argument of proving their assertions as I have written in my Chirp "02/05/20 Assertions are the Question".

Statistics can be wrong or misinterpreted, studies can be biased or incomplete, the hard sciences can be incorrect or misunderstood, the soft sciences can be amiss or imperfect, and experts are not infallible, and experts often disagree with each other. Many times, the experts are wrong, especially when opining outside of their areas of expertise. They are most often wrong within their expertise when they utilize knowledge or experience from outside their expertise to formulate their statements or opinions. And all areas of expertise are impacted by matters outside their area of expertise.

Use authorities as references rather than proofs. You should always remember that "experts should be on tap, not on top."

04/27/20 Bankruptcy of States

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has suggested that states should be able to declare bankruptcy, much as cities have been allowed to do in the past decade. Whether this is advisable or the prudent thing for a State to do is not the issue of the Chirp. The issue is the morality of expecting the citizens of one state to pay the debts of another state. It is also the issue of responsibility, the responsibility of the citizens of a state to fund and pay the debts that they have incurred.

The people of a State elect their legislators and Governors who pass and enact taxes and expenditures. As such, the debts of a state are the responsibility of the legislators and Governors, and ultimately the people who elected them, and it is the people of the State who are responsible for paying their state debts. To expect the people of another state to pay their debts is to shift this burden to people who were not responsible for incurring the debt. After all, you would not expect your neighbor to help pay off your debts that were a result of your spending. It is also antithetical to the “No Taxation Without Representation” slogan that was a basis for the American Revolution. For if the people of one state pay the debts of another state, in which they had no representation, then you are taxing them without their having had any representation in the enactment of taxes and expenditures in the state that incurred the debt. If this were to occur, then there would be no check on a state to tax and spend responsibly, as they could expect that the people of other states would bail-out their irresponsible behavior.

If a State declared bankruptcy, then they would have to cede authority to tax and spend to a Bankruptcy Court. Courts that would act with the powers of a legislator or executive. This is also antithetical to representative democracy, but this is the price they pay for behaving irresponsibly. The mitigating factor is that the Federal branches of government (Legislative, Executive, and Judicial) would have to maintain oversight and take corrective actions of the Bankruptcy Court to assure the Constitutional rights of the people of the state are not abrogated. This has been done before by the Federal government, although obliquely, in the Era of Reconstruction after the Civil War.

The objection that the Federal government has a responsibility to assist in the debts that occurred as a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic is a valid objection. The Federal government, of course, has a responsibility to assist the State government in paying the debts that were incurred as a result of Federal actions in the Coronavirus Pandemic. But it is only those debts that were incurred as a result of Federal actions during the Coronavirus Pandemic that the Federal government has responsibility. To utilize the Coronavirus Pandemic to pay off other state debts not related to the Coronavirus Pandemic is an abuse of responsibility.

As for me, I highly object to paying the debts of another state as I am committed to the concept of:

“No Taxation Without Representation.”

04/25/20 A Philosophical Approach - Update

I have updated my article “A Philosophical Approach”, that adds some additional thoughts on this topic.

04/12/20 Classical Music Snippets

I have added a section to my article "Classical Music Appreciation". This section "Classical Music Snippets" are a collection of excerpts of great Classical Music to highlight a topic. They are also an excellent means to whet your appetite for Classical Music as follows:

For more Classical Music snippets I would suggest you visit the YouTube channel Melodious Heart.

04/11/20 A Philosophical Mind

Many people assume that if someone has a Philosophical Mind that they have studied Philosophy. But this is not the case. A Philosophical Mind is one that approaches thinking in a rational manner. A Philosophical Mind utilizes a manner and methodology that allows them to reach a sound conclusion. A Philosophical Mind gathers information and facts to assure that they are correct and complete. A Philosophical Mind then organizes this information and facts in a reasonable manner, utilizing formal and informal logic to reach a conclusion. A Philosophical Mind examines their reasoning to eliminate Logical Fallacies and Cognitive Biases. Therefore, a Philosophical Mind provides the best possible answer for the issue or concern it examines, assuming that the information and facts are correct and complete. The only response to a philosophical argument is to challenge the reasoning of the argument or the correctness or completeness of the information and facts. Any conclusions or beliefs that you entertain, without a philosophical argument in support, have no basis in fact nor reasoning. No other response to a philosophical argument, except a counter philosophical argument, is reasonable nor acceptable. Or to paraphrase Christopher Hitchens:

“What can be asserted without a philosophical basic can be dismissed without a philosophical basis.”

There can be no agreement to disagree unless both parties have a philosophical basis, or both parties are arguing on a non-philosophical basis. And to argue on a non-philosophical basis most often leads to the wrong conclusion.

When reading my webpages, you will notice that I often take a philosophical approach to discuss issues and concerns. But why do I take a philosophical approach? The answer is because Philosophy teaches you how to think, not what to think. I also believe that a philosophical approach is the best means to resolve the issues and concerns that beset modern America. My article “A Philosophical Approach” explains my thoughts on this subject.

04/10/20 Some Problems and Some Answers

Life is neither fair nor unfair. Life is what it is. To deal with life, other than for what it is, is foolhardy and wasteful. In this world, as regards to reproduction, the male is the inseminator, and the female is the incubator. It is neither fair nor unfair that you are male or female. Rather it is by random chance you ended up male or female.

In regard to male-female differences, 93% of workplace fatalities are men, as men usually perform more dangerous jobs, more physically demanding jobs, and jobs that are outdoors. Men tend to work more hours per week than women. Men live an average of 6 years less than a woman. While 78% of suicides are men, suicide attempts are between two and four times more frequent among females. In 2017, men died by suicide 3.54x more often than women. Therefore, suicide attempts by a woman are a cry for help, while suicide attempts by a man is a goal.

Once largely limited to poor women and minorities, single motherhood is now becoming the new “norm”. This prevalence is due in part to the growing trend of children born outside marriage — a societal trend that was virtually unheard of decades ago. About 4 out of 10 children were born to unwed mothers. Nearly two-thirds were born to mothers under the age of 30. Today 1 in 4 children under the age of 18 — a total of about 16.4 million — are being raised without a father. Of all single-parent families in the U.S., single mothers make up the vast majority.

Regarding boys' need for fathers, in 2008, then-Sen. Obama told an audience: "Children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit a crime; nine times more likely to drop out of schools; and 20 times more likely to end up in prison."

Women’s suffrage movement leaders Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony referred to abortion as “infanticide” and “child murder.” Alice Paul, an American suffragist, feminist, and women's rights activist, famously called abortion the “ultimate exploitation of women”. “Abortion is profoundly anti-woman,” Mother Teresa of Calcutta pointed out. “Three-quarters of its victims are women: Half the babies and all the mothers.”

The answer to unwanted babies is not abortion but a responsible sexual activity that does not result in pregnancy. The answer to unwed mothers is not more governmental social policies but for men to take responsibility for impregnation and be prepared to marry the mother of their children. The solution to fatherless children is for a man to help raise their children and guide them to becoming responsible adults. To be a man is not the ability to impregnate a woman but to assume the responsibility for your actions, both sexual and non-sexual. As for suicide, the answer is for everyone to be mindful of the sanctity of human life, including their own life, then seeking help for serious problems in their life. We all, family, friends, and coworkers, should become more cognizant of other people’s problems and reach out to provide assistance for those that need help.

Obviously, the means we are taking to resolve these problems is not working and insane, as insanity has been defined as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Perhaps it is time that we take a different approach to resolve these problems. An approach that emphasizes the importance of living a moral and ethical life and caring for others.

04/09/20 Feeling Good Vs. Doing Good

I have added a new Pearl of Wisdom, “Do Good Before You Feel Good”. Most Americans have good intentions when they think about how to help their fellow Americans. Most Americans, however, often judge their results based on how they feel good about what they're doing, and rarely look at the results of what they are doing. The difference between feeling good and doing good is often profound. This is best illustrated by a true story from my own life.

Several years ago, I was at a client site when the owner mentioned that her son, who had just started college, was considering leaving college to seek employment and make money. She was distressed, as she knew that this was not a wise decision in the long run. As he was working there that day, on a part-time basis, she asked if I could say something to him. I thought about how to best approach her son, as I am a person without a college degree, and understood the possible negative effects of him dropping out of college.

I could have just spoken to him for a few moments and told him I think he was making a wrong decision. This would have made me feel good about the situation. However, I decided I wanted to do good about the situation. Therefore, I took him aside and had a 20-minute discussion about what life would be like without a college degree in today's world. I explained to him it would be difficult to find a job, keep a job, advance his career on the job, he would receive lower pay then others that were doing his job, and he would constantly have to perform at 110% to be somewhat equal with his other college-educated coworkers, in the eyes of his management.

I further explained I understood his desire for employment and to earn money a start enjoying life. I also agreed with him that his efforts to earn a college degree might not be appropriate for the employment that he secured. I told him that he should instead think of a college degree as a ticket to success. If you had that ticket, you could board the train to success and utilize that ticket in continuing his success. Even though the college degree he earned may not be appropriate to his employment, it would open doors for him that would be closed without a college degree.

I encouraged him to stay in college, get his ticket, and find employment in something that he would be interested in doing. In addition, the time he spent in college could be the most enjoyable period of his life, and he would make many friends and associations that could last throughout his life.

In taking the time to do this, I not only felt good about what I had done, but I had hoped that I would do good, and he would remain in college. I am happy to report that he did indeed decide to remain in college, get his degree, and find employment in something that he wanted to do. I am unhappy to report that several months after he found employment, he was involved in a fatal car accident. This was a great loss for his family, friends, coworkers, and all those that knew him. He was a fine young man, well-liked by all who would have been a positive influence on all those around him. It is in his memory that I dedicate this Chirp.

Therefore, it is much more important that you do good rather than feel good. We would all become better persons, and our society would benefit if we were all careful to do good and then feel good after we have done good.

04/08/20 To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders

A person or body of people who rules or commands is not exercising leadership. A person or body of people who lead a group through example and persuasion are leaders. Sometimes rulers are necessary, such as in times of war, national emergencies, or regional or local disasters. Yet, in such situations, the rulers must relinquish their command after such times have ended. To do otherwise is to entrench despotism or tyrannical rule upon a person(s) or peoples.

The most important, and most consequential, rulership or leadership is at the governmental level. My new Article "To Be Rulers or to Be Leaders" examines these issues and concerns in regards to our current politicians' words and deeds.

04/06/20 Independence of Executive Powers

The hew and cry by many Democratic leaders for Independent Agencies or Authorities, independent Inspector Generals, or any independent executive powers are not only wrongheaded but unconstitutional. The Constitution of the United States in Article. II, Section. 1. states:

“The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America.”

There is no allowance in the Constitution for any independence of any governmental executive authority outside of the President. The only independence in the Constitution is within the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches Constitutionally delegated responsibilities. All people who work for the United States government must be responsible to one of these three branches of government. Any government authority that executes the law is responsible to the Executive Branch led by the President. Anyone who is responsible for the creation of the laws is responsible to the Legislative branch, and anyone who exercises judicial powers is responsible to the Judicial Branch. To create authorities and governmental employees not responsible to the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches is to create a fourth branch of government, a non-responsible and unaccountable branch, which is a flagrant violation of the Constitution.

As such, there is nothing independent in the actions of anyone who serves in the Executive Branch. They are responsible and accountable to the President of the United States, and they serve at the will of the President, and they are only subject to Senate confirmation for officers of the Executive Branch.

It is wrongheaded because those who work for the government must be held responsible and accountable to the leadership of the different branches of government. Without this responsibility and accountability, we do not have a representative government subject to the will and approval of the people of the United States expressed through elections or appointments by the Senate. If these people or agencies were truly independent, they would become De Facto dictators within their areas of responsibility. Dictators that are antithetical to the Constitution.

The call for independence makes for great politics but bad governance, as well as being unconstitutional. As such, those that call for independence of executive powers should be admonished and ignored.

O4/05/20 Another Epidemic Challenging America

Another epidemic has swept over the country in the last few years, a psychological epidemic known as “Trump Derangement Syndrome” (TDS). A selective epidemic that only seems to infect liberals, progressives, leftists, Democrats, and journalists. Some of these people are immune, but most of them are infected. Its symptoms are that whatever President Trump supports must be wrong, and whatever President Trump opposes must be right. The manifestations of TDS are a belief in the Russian Collusion Delusion, the Impeachment Constitutional Crisis, and now the Coronavirus Responses of President Trump.

One of the consequences of TDS is short-term memory loss. Words and deeds of TDS sufferers are quickly forgotten, especially when they are counter their current words and deeds. The TDS infection of the journalist has led them to not confront and explain theirs, and other TDS infected words and deeds of the (recent) past. This leads to obscuring people's understanding, leaving them baffled or bewildered, and susceptible to accepting mistaken conclusions, as explained in my Chirp on “04/01/19 Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors”. This also leads to the problems that I have outlined in my Coronavirus Pandemic Chirp of “04/05/20 The Madness of Crowds and Their Manipulators”.

All Americans need to purge themselves of TDS and examine the positions of President Trump in a rational manner. Critiquing of President Trump’s position based on rationality is helpful and acceptable. Responding to President Trump’s positions based upon TDS infection is harmful and should be unacceptable.

04/02/20 Coronavirus Pandemic

I have withdrawn my Chirps about the Coronavirus Pandemic and incorporated them in a longer article that examines the Coronavirus Pandemic. This Article “Coronavirus Pandemic“ should be read in order to understand the impacts of the Coronavirus Pandemic. Please check back regularly, as I will be adding new sections to this article throughout the Coronavirus Pandemic and its aftershocks.

03/30/20 The Wit and Wisdom of Benjamin Franklin

Throughout my writings and my life I have often and repeatedly quoted the wit and wisdom of Benjamin Franklin. He is my favorite historical personage, and I have even written an article on “The Life and Contributions of Benjamin Franklin ”. Two of his sayings that I have adopted as guiding principles for my life are part of my “Pearls of Wisdom” as "Be Prepared to Change Your Mind". These quotes are:

“For having lived long, I have experienced many instances of being obliged by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important subjects, which I once thought right, but found to be otherwise. It is therefore that the older I grow, the more apt I am to doubt my own judgment, and to pay more respect to the judgment of others.”

and

“Doubt a little of your own infallibility.”

Adopting these guiding principles in your life not only makes you a better person but also assist you in your dealings with others. For if you can change your mind then you can be accepting of another person changing their mind. If you accept that you are fallible, then you can accept the fallibility of others. If the change of mind and fallibility of the other person is reasonable then it will be understandable by you. This understandability will also make for a more harmonious relationship between you and the other person. It will also help you to understand when a public person or politician changes their mind or has a failure. If their change of mind or failure is reasonable or understandable, and not for advantageous purposes nor a turpitude failing, then it may become more acceptable to you. All of this will also help you to “Be the Better Person”.

03/29/20 A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste

Socrates once famously said:

"An Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living"

Socrates was wrong. An unexamined life can be worth living if it is lived in a legal, moral, and ethical way. However, an examined life is a more fulfilling life. If you examine your life, you will learn more about yourself, your strengths, and your weaknesses, and have a better understanding of yourself and what is happening around you. However, too much examination can lead to self-pity, depression (not clinical depression as this is a medical condition), egotism, or narcissism, traits that I particularly disdain.

I would also add my own thoughts:

"A mind is a terrible thing to waste,
and a mind that is not fully utilized is a wasted mind."

and

"I tried to get them to think, but all they wanted to do was argue."

Most people do not fully utilize their minds excepts perhaps in the conduct of their employment (and not always). Thinking can be difficult, time consuming, tiring, and stressful. Also, the stresses and strains of daily life make it difficult to allocate the time and energy necessary to think. It is much easier to be entertained than it is to think. Under these circumstances it is easy to postpone thinking about something to a later time. But for many this postponement is indefinite and sometimes never occurs. You also have to allocated the time and effort need to learn the proper method of thinking as outlined in my article on “Reasoning”. Good thinking also requires good and extensive reading, which also requires time and effort. My Article “Further Readings and Literature” is a good starting point for readings. If you do not take the time and effort to read and think, and learn how to think, then you are wasting your mind. Not only are you wasting your mind, but you will indubitably make decisions that will adversely impact yourself, your family, you employer, and society.

Most people believe that they have thought about the things that they discuss or argue about. But they usually have not given it much reasoned thought, but they have given it much emotional notions. Many (if not most) of today's political debate is about feelings. But feelings do not make for good policy. Facts, intelligence, and reasoning, i.e., thinking, should be utilized to create policy, with feelings being used as a supplement to your thinking. Anyone who engages in "The Three D's (Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage) of Modern Political Debate" during a discussion or argument is not thinking but feeling. Always remember that the only good way to create public policy is by an open and honest discussion of the issues based on facts, intelligence, and reasoning. All sides of an issue should be heard and debated to assure that the best public policy is implemented. To do so otherwise creates more problems than it solves, and often leads to partisanship and acrimony.

It is for these reasons that I have dedicate myself to thinking, rather than feeling, on the issues and topics that I have written upon. And I will do so "With Facts, Intelligence, and Reasoning". My feelings are predicated on my thoughts, but I will mostly write about my thoughts instead of my feelings. And when I think and write I always remember the wisdom of Benjamin Franklin:

“For having lived long, I have experienced many instances of being obliged by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important subjects, which I once thought right, but found to be otherwise. It is therefore that the older I grow, the more apt I am to doubt my own judgment, and to pay more respect to the judgment of others.”

and

“Doubt a little of your own infallibility.”

03/28/20 Freedom of the Press?

The Press has the freedom to report on anything they wish, in any manner they wish, as long as they do not with malice slander or libel a person. The American people have the right to ignore, complain, challenge, mock, or belittle the Press as they should so choose, as long as they do not with malice slander or libel a newsperson. It is not an abridgment of the Freedom of the Press for the American people to do so, but an exercise of the Freedom of Speech by the American people. And by the American people, I mean all people, from the President to an unemployed person, the American people have this right. What the American people may not do is to restrict the Freedom of the Press.

And, no, President Trump exercising his Free Speech rights does not pose a danger to the Freedom of the Press. It is only when his speech becomes actions that it becomes a danger. To date, President Trump has not taken any actions that endanger the Freedom of the Press. Criticism and critique are not a danger, and pointing out misleading or false information is not a danger, and refusing to cooperate with a journalist or media organizations that practice irresponsible journalism is not a danger. But irresponsible journalism is a danger to the American people. Dangerous in that the American people need responsible journalism to provide them with accurate and comprehensive information for them to make informed and responsible decisions.

The last several decades have seen the decline of responsible journalism. Journalism that has become advocacy instead of reporting. Journalism that is biased and mostly one-sided. Journalism that is often inaccurate or misleading. Journalism that is more concerned with being first rather than being correct. Journalism that is more concerned with readership and viewership numbers than accurate and comprehensive information. Journalism that provides more hype and sensationalism than context and circumstance. This modern journalism is more of a danger to the Freedom of the Press than is the Freedom of Speech then is exercised against modern journalism.

Until journalism self-corrects and returns to responsible reporting, it poses a danger to the American people. A danger in that the American people and its leadership will make unwise decisions based on irresponsible journalism, rather than a somber review of the facts and the truths of a situation. For more on this issue, I would direct you to my article “Modern Journalism”.

03/25/20 Soulful Classical Music

I have compiled a list of my favorite calming soulful Classical Music. In these troubled times we should take a break, relax, and enjoy some simple pleasures. Hopefully, this "Classical Soulful Music" list can accomplish this goal.

03/18/20 Constitutional Protection of Rights and Just Laws

In another article, "A Hierarchy of Rights" I examines the hierarchy of rights and the interrelationship of these rights. My new article "Constitutional Protection of Rights and Just Laws” examines how these rights are protected in the U.S. Constitution.

03/16/20 A Hierarchy of Rights

Much has been said about the rights of a U.S. citizen. In my view, U.S. Citizens have a hierarchy of rights. They are:

    1. Human (or Natural) Rights
    2. Constitutional Rights
    3. Civil Rights

 My new Article “A Hierarchy of Rights” examines this hierarchy and the interrelationship of these rights.

03/15/20 Limited and Enumerated Powers

The U.S. Constitution specifies the limited and enumerated powers of the Federal Government. It does so to assure that the Federal Government will not encroach on the rights of the states and the people. My new Article “Limited and Enumerated Powers” examines these powers and their application in today’s society.

03/09/20 Judges, Not Lords

Each branch of the Government; Executive, Legislative, and Judicial, take an oath of fidelity to the U.S. Constitution, and each branch needs to uphold the Constitution as it sees fit. As each branch is co-equal to each other, all three branches have the duty and responsibility to enforce the Constitution. No one branch is supreme in their duty or responsibility to enforce the Constitution. The Supreme Court is only supreme within the Judicial branch. My new Article “Judges, Not Lords” examines the role of Judges in our Constitutional system.

03/03/20 It Shouldn't Matter Who the President Is

Freedom lovers everywhere are biting their nails during the election season, wondering how the damage can be limited. Depending on who gains control, we could have trade wars, nationalized health care, the pillaging of Wall Street and Main Street, more wars in the Middle East, a VAT tax, surveillance of your smartphone, mass deportations, internment camps, and worse.

Read that sentence slowly in a deep voice and it sounds like the trailer to a dystopian film.

And it doesn't have to.

So begins an article by Jeffrey A. Tucker which he published on March 2, 2016. It was true then and it is true now. I would encourage all to read this article in the Foundation of Economic Education. His perspective will give you a better understanding of how it seems that every Presidential election in modern history has become ‘The most important election in our lifetime’.

03/02/20 Attorney General William Barr

As in all things political today Attorney General William Barr has both his detractors and supporters, and all differentiations in between. His detractors have utilized the techniques of "Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)" to characterize him, while his supporters have been tepid in his defense. I am generally supportive of Attorney General Barr as I believe that he is trying to do the right thing under very difficult circumstances. The question is then ‘What is the right thing he believes in?’. To gain a better understanding of Attorney General Barr I would direct you to some of his speeches where he expounds upon his perspectives. These speeches show a very thoughtful man with keen insights on today’s society while providing a historical perspective. They are:

These thoughtful remarks are why I believe that Attorney General Barr is the right person to lead the Justice Department today.

03/01/20 If You Don’t Have Anything to Say, Say Nothing

I have updated my “Pearls of Wisdom” as follows:

If You Don’t Have Anything to Say, Say Nothing

Many feel the need to join or start a conversation to be sociable. Often, however, we tend to comment on the topic without much thought, knowledge, or experience on the topic. Usually this results in revealing our ignorance of the topic. When we are ignorant of the topic an inquiry of those who are not ignorant of the topic is the best approach in joining or starting a conversation. Sometimes, however, it is best to say nothing but to listen attentively. This does not make you unsociable but wise. It will also increase your scope of knowledge if you pay attention to those that are knowledgeable of the topic. The trick, however, is determining who in the conversation is or is not ignorant of the topic, then paying no heed to those that are ignorant of the topic. In any conversation you join or start you should always remember my other Pearl of Wisdom “Always Be Polite and Respectful”, especially when you are ignorant of the topic.

This is a Pearl of Wisdom that I utilize in writing my Chirps, Articles, and Observations. If I don’t have anything to say I will say nothing. Consequently, there are many topics that I do not write about, as I believe that I have nothing to contribute to the topic through my ignorance of the topic. I am also aware of my limitations, and only write what I know, as I have commented upon in another Pearl of Wisdom “Know Your Limitations”.

02/29/30 Now That's Music

You are all probably aware that I am a lover of Classical Music. What you may not be aware of is that I also love other genres of music, particularly Rock N’ Roll. I have not commented on these genres because I believe that I have nothing to contribute to this discussion that other, more knowledgeable, and qualified persons have said. However, I have decided to create lists "Now That's Music" of my favorite music in these genres.

02/24/20 Movies Gems

My article “That's Entertainment” and Chirp “Movies and Television with Meaning” mainly deals with big movies with big meanings or big entertainment value. There are some movies, however, that deal with smaller but no less important subjects. They usually deal with the human condition and focus on individuals and life’s conundrums. I, therefore, have compiled a shortlist of these movies that reflect these human conditions.

02/23/20 The Greatest Teamwork

Many, if not most, human activities require teamwork to achieve a goal. This is apparent in the sports arena, but entertainment (movies, television, concerts, etc.) also requires extensive teamwork to meet their goals. It is also true for any business, tradesmen, or governmental activities to have effective teamwork to meet their goals. Individual efforts within a team are important to achieve the goal, but most often a team is necessary to support the individual efforts. There are some fields in which the individual effort is paramount for success, mostly in the creative arts and sole-independent contract businesses, but teamwork is the normative. Whenever we see a team performance that excels, we often see excellence. Those efforts that lack effective teamwork are often average or mediocre in achieving their goals. It is true that most often when a team succeeds everyone in the team succeeds, but it is also often true that if an individual team member fails the team will often fail. I have watched and participated in many team efforts, in many different arena’s, over many years. I have been impressed, and disappointed, by many of these team efforts.

The question arises as to which teamwork is most important to achieve success. Many argue that it is team sports, and which team sport, requires the most teamwork to succeed. There is no doubt that team sports require great teamwork to succeed, but many team sports have a great individual teammate(s) that can carry the team to success. This is true for many other team activities where an individual can compensate for others in the team and propel them to success. The question is “Which team requires every member of the team to excel in order to achieve their goal?”. There are a few answers to this question, but the one answer that stands out is an orchestra.

An orchestra, both large and small, requires that each individual team member excel in order to create beautiful music. When one or more members of an orchestra fail to perform to high expectations the quality of the music suffers. This is what differentiates a great orchestra from all the others. It is immediately recognizable when you attend an orchestral performance. Great music, when performed greatly, is immediately fully satisfying. However, when it is not performed well it leaves the listener unsatisfied. Most modern symphonic orchestras have approximately one hundred members. One hundred members, under the direction of one conductor, in which everyone needs to perform well and in teamwork to create beautiful and satisfying music.

This is one of the reasons that I enjoy Classical Music, not only for the great music, but for the great performances, and the teamwork exhibited in performing the music. For more of my thoughts about Classical Music please review my articles "Classical Music Appreciation" and "Classical Music Chirps".

02/22/20 Know Your Limitations and Prioritize Your Life

I have updated my “Pearls of Wisdom” as follows:

Know Your Limitations

As Dirty Harry said in the movie of the same name “A man’s got to know his limitations”. We must all know our limitations and work within them and ask for assistance when we reach them. Know your skills and abilities, your knowledge, experience, and intelligence, and know what you don’t know and what skills and abilities that you do not have. When you don’t have the skills and abilities, or the knowledge, experience, and intelligence, do not be afraid to ask someone who is capable for their assistance. It is not a sign of weakness to do so, and indeed, it is a sign of strength to do so.

Strength to admit to your limitations, strength to ask for assistance, and strength to utilize another’s capabilities to achieve your goal is not a weakness. You will also gain skills and abilities and increase your knowledge, experience, and intelligence in doing so. If you don’t know your limitations and attempt to do something beyond your limitations, you will often fail to reach your goal. Achieving the goal should be the most important objective. Just be careful that the person you ask for assistance has the proper skills and abilities, or the knowledge, experience, and intelligence to assist you.

You should also be prepared to acknowledge and credit the person(s) who assisted you. To do so will gain you the respect of those around you, and perhaps a good friendship of those who assisted you.

Prioritize Your Life

The way we priorities our activities is one of the means in which we can judge a person’s character. The more you prioritize something the more important it is to you. Yet, often we do not prioritize our activities but place them into categories of necessities or convenience and then give them no order of precedence. Necessities are important and often need to be done as quickly as possible. Conveniences, however, are what defines what is important to us and it is a reflection on our character. Self, family, friends, work, and leisure is often the categories that we utilize to prioritize.

What you do, and the order in which you do it, is a determinative factor in your character. For you will be judged by what you do, not by what you say. This requires that you think about and decide what is important in your life, and then prioritize what you do. Sometimes you may be too tired to act upon a priority. However, being too tired to do something is often a poor excuse, but not a good reason, for not doing something that is a priority. If you are indeed too tired, then you need to act upon your priority after you have rested. To not do so is a reflection of your character. Other excuses are also utilized to not do something. The question you need to ask yourself is ‘Is this just a poor excuse or a good reason to not do something?’. A good reason for not doing something is acceptable, but a poor excuse is never acceptable.

Therefore, prioritize your life to reflect what is important in your life. Then act upon your priorities in the order of importance. This prioritization and action are a true reflection of your character.

02/21/20 Bring Us Together

The Democrat Presidential candidates like to say that they can bring us together and unite the country. To this I would ask them three questions on how they would bring us together:

    1. How will you bring the pro-life and pro-choice proponents together?
    2. How will you bring the people who believe in the right to keep and bear arms together with the people who believe in gun control?
    3. How will you bring together the people who believe in legal immigration but oppose illegal immigration with those that believe in open borders?

These are, of course, rhetorical questions as there is no answer for them. The typical Democrat answer is that they would implement common-sense solutions. But whose common sense will they utilize – the conservatives or the liberal/progressives’ common sense? They would also reply that they would change the tone of the rhetoric. But the tone is mostly coming from the left side of the political spectrum as they often shout down and disrupt the free speech rights of their opponents. Just as you should not mollify a misbehaving child in a supermarket or department store you should not mollify the shouters and disruptors in an effort to bring us together and unite the country.

Therefore, when a Democrat candidate speaks of bringing us together and uniting us, what they actually mean is for all those that oppose their policy positions to drop their opposition and remain silent. This is not bringing people together but ignoring or suppressing the free speech rights of those who disagree with the Democrat policy positions.

02/20/20 Stupid Is as Stupid Does

“Stupid is as stupid does” is a quote from the movie “Forest Gump”. This phrase underlies an important truth; that you should be judged by your actions and not as much by your speech. Speech may be significant, but actions are definitive. Until speech is transformed into actions speech is nothing but words. Words that can express ideas that can be critiqued or criticized, but not a judgment of a person’s character. Actions are a judgment on a person’s character and define what a person truly is.

Therefore, it can also be stated unequivocally that “Fascism is as Fascism does”. Consequently, if you employ fascist tactics then you are a fascist. Fascism is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism that came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe. The first fascist movements emerged in Italy during World War I, before it spread to other European countries. Fascism is best expressed by quotes of its leading proponent, Benito Mussolini:

The first two points are indicative of an authorial regime that wishes to control people and society, while the third point is revelatory of their method to accomplish their goals. And, unfortunately, modern American Leftism is utilizing the third point as its tactic to suppress those that disagree with them in order to achieve the goals of the first two points. Shouting down or obstructing free speech, violent protests, destruction of personal property, and economic boycotts are a means that modern American Leftism uses to destroy their opponents. Not to disagree with them but to destroy them. For those who would say that Fascism is not left-wing ideology I would direct you to my article “Nazism and Fascism” that refutes this belief.

Many would claim that these tactics are a legitimate response in order to not tolerate the intolerant. But as my Chip “To Not Tolerate the Intolerant” elaborates this is a fallacious argument. An argument that has pernicious repercussions. For those that would say that these protesters are anti-fascist I would direct you to my Article “Modern American Fascism” which refutes this argument.

People who employ these tactics lack emotional control and intellectual acuity to reasonable defend their positions. They should be pitied, but not tolerated. For they are destructive to free speech and, consequently, antithetical to "Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice for All".

02/19/20 Impeachment Consequences

My final article on impeachment has been posted. This article “Impeachment Consequences” deals with the future consequences of impeachment to our Republic. Consequences that may be far-reaching and perverse to our Constitutional Republic. Some consequences that can be foreseen, and other consequences that cannot be foreseen as I have explained in my article “The Law of Unintended Consequences”. This article examines the consequences of what I can foresee, and calls into question the unforeseen consequences.

02/18/20 The Great Divergence

Western Civilization has been characterized as imperialism, slavery, and wars, but nearly all major civilizations enslaved people, built empires and made war. Stanford historian Niall Ferguson on PragerU has pointed out the differences between Western Civilization and other civilizations known by economists as The Great Divergence. They are:

    1. Economic and political competition.
    2. The Scientific Revolution.
    3. The rule of law and representative government.
    4. Modern medicine.
    5. The consumer society.
    6. The work ethic.

This thought-provoking, five-and-a-half-minute video, should give pause to all and for all to be thankful for what Western Civilization has bestowed upon the world.

02/16/20 Sociologies and Ideologies

Liberalism/Progressivism and Conservatism are sociologies, not ideologies. An ideology is a coherent set of ideas about how the political world should function. Sociology is a system of ideas and beliefs that are not necessarily coherent and maybe even contradictory – held by people who flock together and interact with each other. Therefore, the Democrat and Republican Parties are sociologies. Sociologies that are based on an ideology of governance as I have expounded upon in three of my recent articles. Like a Classical concerto, these Articles need to be played (read) in order to understand the full meaning of the music (governance). These articles are; “The Foundation of the Rights of the Common Man”, “There is Nothing democratic About the Democrat Party” and “Have We Lost Our Way?”.

The “Goodman Institute for Public Policy Research” has some interesting articles on this subject;

I would recommend you read and ponder these articles.

02/15/20 Extracted Articles for Perusal and Reference

I have extracted three Articles from my Observations for your ease of perusal and reference purposes. They are:

Dialog & Debate (Feb 2020) - In today's political environment Dialog and Debate have degenerate into the employment of tactics, tactics that do not provide illumination but instead generate heat. This is done to generate political points for electioneering purposes rather than an examination of the issue to reach an understanding. I, therefore, have extracted my Observation on Dialog and Debate for your illumination of these tactics.

Modern Journalism (Feb 2020) - Media Bias is so widespread today that it is widely recognized by the general public, and even journalists comment upon their lack of support by the general public. This is supported by all public polling, and even though I am not a believer in public polling, I can see this in how the public does not respond to journalism reporting. This article examines the reasons for journalisms' decline.

Reasoning (Feb 2020) - To properly reason you need to understand Formal and Informal Logic, Logical Fallacies, Cognitive Biases, and Common Sense. These must always be ascertained and incorporated for a rational debate to occur. You must also be aware of how to utilize common sense appropriately. This article is an outline of Formal and Informal Logic, Logical Fallacies, Cognitive Biases, and Common Sense.

02/14/20 Intersectionality

Intersectionality is the interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage.

Intersectionality is all in how you categorize it. There are many ways in which you can Ven Diagram or Hierarchically Structure intersectionality. When discussing the intersectionality of groups of people we could Hierarchically Structure them as follows:

Black --> Female --> Homosexual --> Uneducated --> Lower Class --> Unmarried --> Mother --> Unhealthy --> Unhandsome --> Progressive = INDIVIDUAL

White --> Male  --> Heterosexual --> Educated  --> Middle Class --> Married --> Father --> Healthy --> Attractive --> Conservative = INDIVIDUAL

No matter how you structure intersectionality, at the core of a Ven Diagram or the base of a Hierarchically Structure, is an individual. To ignore the core or base in your intersectionality makes it incomplete and subject to misinterpretation. To utilize intersectionality without accounting for the core or base is to engage in “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors”. To create a Law or Social Policy not based on the core or base dooms the Law or Social Policy to failure.

Consequently, whenever someone speaks of intersectionality I think of the individual. This is how my Chirps, Articles, and Observations are focused; on the individual. The individual Human Rights, Constitutional Rights, and Civil Rights that are instituted to preserve the individual "Freedoms, Liberties, Equalities, and Justice for All". Therefore, we should not allow intersectionality to infringe on these rights.

02/13/20 Do the Ends Justify the Means?

When do the ends justify the means?  This can be a very difficult question to answer, and it is often not black or white. Almost always the answer is no but is some cases it can be yes. My new article "Do the Ends Justify the Means?" broadly addresses this question.

02/12/20 The Intellectual, Emotional, and Physical Strains of Writing

In writing these Articles and Chirps I have attempted to assure that the information I present is factual and accurate. I, therefore, expend time and effort in researching to obtain the facts and achieve accuracy. The process of writing for me is an intellectual, emotional, and physical strain. I have, therefore, written a short article “The Intellectual, Emotional, and Physical Strains of Writing” that explains my research efforts, and the intellectual, emotional, and physical strains of writing these Articles and Chirps.

02/11/20 Sloganeering versus Governance

The Democrat Party slogan “the party of the people” has actually become “the party of special interest groups”, while the slogan of the Republican Party “The Grand Old Party” is more apt to be “the party of common man rights”. Of course, this is an over-simplification of both the Democrat and Republican parties, but it has a broad streak of truth for both parties. But a slogan does not imply any truth to the slogan. You must look behind the slogan to determine the truth of a slogan. This is especially true when dealing with political slogans. If you look behind a political slogan to determine what it means for how they would govern then my simplification of the Democrat and Republican parties’ slogans makes more sense.

Three of my recent articles have expounded on the issues of governance by the Democrat and Republican parties’. Like a Classical concerto, they need to be played (read) in order to understand the full meaning of the music (governance). These articles are; “The Foundation of the Rights of the Common Man”, “There is Nothing democratic About the Democrat Party” and “Have We Lost Our Way?”. I believe that this will be good reading, and lead to good thinking.

02/10/20 Who is Divisive?

When a Republican or a Conservative state their policies they are often called divisive, while Democrats and Liberal/Progressives are often called inclusive. But who is actually divisive or inclusive? It often depends on your definition of divisive/inclusive and your political viewpoint.  If you mean inclusive to be when a person agrees and supports your policy position, then of course your opponent who disagrees and opposes your policy position must be divisive. But divisiveness or inclusiveness rarely cannot be judged solely on a policy position, as all policy positions have both inclusive and divisive elements.

What can be judged as divisiveness or inclusiveness is the language utilized to describe your opponent. The use of pejoratives to describe your opponent is often the best means to determine divisiveness or inclusiveness as I have discussed in my article “Divisiveness in America”. The utilization of pejoratives as a means to “Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)” someone that you disagree with. To utilize the Three D’s is not inclusive, and is indeed the most divisive approach that can be taken.

02/09/20 Words and Terms as Weapons, Not for Comprehension

It is quite common for politicians and political commentators to utilize words and terms when discussing an issue or concern. But if they are unfamiliar with the true meaning of the words or terms then they are utilizing the word or term as a weapon, not to make their comments comprehensible. This most frequently occurs when they are discussing Constitutional issues and concerns.

There is great meaning behind the words and terms that describes the principles of the Constitution. Meanings that are essential to how we live and govern ourselves. It is critical to understand, then apply, what these words and terms mean. Without this understanding you will misinterpret the Constitution and apply it incorrectly.

If politicians and political commentators are unaware of the true meaning of the words or terms and they are utilizing them they are demonstrating their ignorance. If they are aware of the true meaning of the word or term and are utilizing them inappropriately then they are being deliberately misleading. And you should not pay attention to ignorant or misleading persons. You can, therefore, be assured that when I utilize a word or term that I understand its true meaning, and I utilize the word or term for comprehension purposes.

02/08/20 Its Never Over

With the acquittal of President Trump in the Senate Impeachment trial this phase of their resistance (not loyal opposition) to President Trump is over. If they have not after three years gotten over that President Trump was duly elected, that President Trump did not collude with the Russians in the 2016 Presidential election, and that President Trump was not guilty of the Impeachment Articles then it will never be over. The Democrats enmity, and indeed hatred, of President Trump will never be over. Their behavior, and misbehavior, during the recent State on the Union address by President Trump is also indicative of their enmity. And they have shown a lack of will power to put this enmity behind them and come to terms with the election of President Trump.

If they can do this, they can proceed with the business of the governance of the United States. But, alas, I do not expect this to happen. With the coming 2020 Presidential election you can expect more displays of the enmity and hatred, rather than governance.  The only way it will ever be over is for the American people to remove the Democrat Party from the reins of power in an overwhelming manner. It is only this removal that will force them to reassess their tactics and approach to governance and then we can proceed with the regular order of doing the business of governance.

02/07/20 What to Think and Not How to Think

Today we have two generations of Americans who have been indoctrinated in that they have been educated on what to think, rather than how to think. How to think requires that you know how to determine what are the correct and pertinent facts, how to logically reason, how to apply informal and formal logic, and how to root out Logical Fallacies and Cognitive Biases. The best way to achieve this is by utilizing “A Philosophical Approach” when thinking.

The modern educational system in America does not teach you how to do these things, and American culture rewards what we think without being critical of how we think. In America if you say the right things you will be praised, and if you do not say the right things you are scorned. But nowhere do we praise, or scorn, based on how a person thinks. Indeed, we very rarely attempt to examine how we think to determine the quality of the thinking. Too often we utilize phrases and slogans in place of intellectual and reasoned thinking. Often, our discussions and debates are a hooray for our side spectacle. Very rarely does anybody question the thinking process but counterpoints with opposite phrases and slogans.

Until we begin to question the line of reasoning we will be engaged in argumentation rather than the resolution to the issues and concerns that beset us.

02/06/20 When is a Question an Assertion?

The answer, of course, is when it is a loaded question. A loaded question (also known as a Complex question fallacy) is a question that contains controversial or unjustified assumptions (e.g., a presumption of guilt). Questions such as “When did you stop beating your wife?”, “Why do you continue to steal?”, etc. are obviously loaded. The most insidious of these loaded questions, however, is when the question has assumptions built into the question that is not obvious. These questions presume facts or truths that have not been proven. And unobvious loaded questions abound today (and many journalist questions are unobvious loaded questions).

The only proper way to answer loaded questions is by challenging the assumptions. But this gives the appearance of not answering or dodging the question, which often redounds negatively on the person answering the question. It is also true that challenging a question can take (considerably) more time than a simple answer would take. Challenging the question's assumptions should and needs to be done to properly answer a loaded question.

The other answer to this question is when a question is formulated in a manner that requires someone to prove a negative. One of the things that western society has learned is that you cannot prove a negative (i.e. prove you didn't say or do something).  Historically, forcing someone to prove a negative has led to witches being burned at the stake, heretic’s being executed, lynching’s to occur, summary executions to take place, as well as many other violations of human rights. It has also led to falsehoods to be introduced into science, law, philosophy, morality, and ethics. No one is required to prove a negative, therefore, refusing to answer negative loaded question presumes nothing and cannot be utilized for any purposes.

Therefore, a loaded question should not be answered directly. It is the unobvious loaded question that has built-in assumptions or a presumption of guilt that should especially not be answered. They should always be challenged as a loaded question by the party being asked the question. Refusing to answer a loaded question presumes nothing and cannot be utilized for any purposes. The time it takes to challenge a loaded question should not be considered detrimental to the person who answers, and indeed, should be redounded positively on the person who answers as it is often a positive reflection on their intelligence and knowledge.

02/05/20 Assertions are the Question

The person asserting something has the responsibility of proving their assertion is correct. The person disputing the assertion has no responsibility to prove the other person’s assertion is incorrect. Too often, in today’s political debates, one side or the other makes an assertion without justifying their assertion. Indeed, they often imply or retort that the other side must prove them wrong. Assertions also contain Presumptions; Assumptions; Incorrect Facts; Incomplete Facts; Missing Facts; Irrelevant Facts; Faulty Reasoning; Logical Fallacies; Cognitive Biases; and the Unintended Consequences problems that may be inherent in the assertion. The deconstruction of an assertion to determine the validity of the assertion may take considerable time and effort. Unless an assertion is not disputable it should be questioned to determine if it contains any of these problems. Generally, the assertion of facts is indisputable. However, the meaning of these facts is often disputable. Therefore, when someone makes an assertion about the meaning of the facts you need to carefully examine the assertion to determine its validity.

In science, law, philosophy, theology, and many other areas of human interactions, it is the responsibility of the person asserting something to prove that their assertion is correct. Otherwise, we could end up with the following absurd situation:

Someone could assert that Martians eat garbage and urinate gasoline. If they did not have to prove their assertion, but someone had to disprove their assertion, then the following would be necessary to disprove the assertion. The person disproving the assertion would have to prove there is no such thing as Martians, or if there were Martians prove that they did not eat garbage, and if there were Martians that ate garbage they would have to prove that they did not urinate gasoline.

Obviously, it is not possible to prove or disprove these things. Therefore, the person who asserts something bears the burden of proving that their assertion is correct.

As Christopher Hitchens once said, "That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence." To agree to disagree requires that both sides must present cogent arguments, explanations, or reasoning for their assertions. Otherwise, it is not possible to disagree with the party without a cogent argument, explanation, or reasoning, you can only dismiss their assertion. You should, therefore, challenge a person who asserts something to prove their assertion. If there is no proof for an assertion, then the assertion can be simply dismissed. Otherwise, you get into the situation that "if you cannot prove that they are wrong then they must be right", which is obviously a fallacious statement.

02/04/20 A Philosophical Approach

When reading my webpages, you will notice that I often take a philosophical approach to discuss issues and concerns. But why do I take a philosophical approach? The answer is because Philosophy teaches you how to think, not what to think. I also believe that a philosophical approach is the best means to resolve the issues and concerns that beset modern America. My new article “A Philosophical Approach” explains my reasoning.

02/03/20 Have We Lost Our Way?

America was founded on the ideals of "Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice for All". Along with the ideas of representative government, due process, the rule of law, property, and contracts. It has been a long and incomplete struggle to achieve these ideals and ideas in America. In the history of the United States, there were abuses and shortcomings of these ideals and ideas because this was a struggle that had initial defects and setbacks during its advancement. My new article “Have We Lost Our Way?” examines these ideals and ideas in modern American governance and society.

02/02/20 There is Nothing democratic About the Democrat Party

All political organizations are Oligarchies, including the Democrat and Republican Parties. The difference is in the power structure of the leadership of the parties. Does the power structure rule from the top-down or lead from the bottom-up? My new article “There Is Nothing democratic About the Democrat Party” examines this topic as it relates to the current Democrat and Republican Parties.

02/01/20 Welcome to the Conservative and Republican World Professor Dershowitz

With his presentation on the Constitutional Issues in the Impeachment of Donald Trump Professor Dershowitz is facing the wrath and fury of the Democrats, the Mainstream Media (MSM), and the Mainstream Cultural Media (MCM). A wrath and fury that seeks to “Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage” and  “Putting Words into Another’s Mouth and a False Dichotomy” for anyone who would disagree with them. Even a noted liberal and supporter of the Democrat Party such as Professor Alan Dershowitz, or Professor Jonathan Turley, who would deviate from their orthodoxy is not immune from their wrath and fury.

To which I say to Professor Dershowitz and Professor Turley; welcome to the world that the Conservatives and Republicans have been living in for the last several decades.

01/31/20 Resolution on the Impeachment of President Trump

With the anticipated end to the Impeachment of President Trump, the Senate will have to pass a resolution of its verdict. Given all that I have read and heard, as well as all I have written in my previous articles, I have created a resolution “Impeachment Senate Trial V“ that I believe the Senate should pass.

01/30/20 New Witnesses at the Senate Impeachment Trial

The new battle cry at the Impeachment of President Trump is the call for new witnesses. The Democrats' reasoning for new witnesses is for the facts and truth needs to be revealed. The Republicans' reasoning against new witnesses it is not their responsibility to investigate, only to make a judgment on the facts presented. As usual, both sides have gotten it wrong. The real battle is “are the Articles of Impeachment against President Trump Constitutional as Professor Dershowitz has laid out in his testimony? My new Article "Impeachment Senate Trial IV" are my thoughts on this topic.

01/27/20 The Foundation of the Rights of the Common Man

Where did the ideals of freedom, liberty, equality, and justice for all, as we now understand them come from? What about the ideas of representative government, the rule of law, equal justice, property, and contracts? My new article "The Foundation of the Rights of the Common Man" examines where these ideals and ideas came from.

01/26/20 Movies and Television with Meaning

Movies and television can be many things, but it most important that they be entertaining. But movies and television can contain messages that can do more than entertain. They can inform and illuminate the human condition. Movies and television such as these are important for their dialog, what they meant, and how they changed your perspective. Movies and television can also have a great impact on our lives and can shape our vision of the world and world events. Sometimes for the good, sometimes for the bad, but mostly not at all.

Many movies and television can do this, but only a few do it thoroughly and excellently. Most of these movies and television that do this are dependent on their script and are often derided for their extensive dialog. In many cases this is true but is some cases it is not. Or, as a movie critic once said about the movie “The Lion in Winter” – “Talk, talk, talk, and talk. But what magnificent talk.”

Therefore, I have decided to compile a short list of movies that have impacted my life:

I would encourage all to take the time to watch these movies and think about their messages. For more movies that I consider thoughtful or entertaining I would direct you to my article “That’s Entertainment”.

01/25/20 Senate Vote on Impeachment

I have written a new Article on "The true meaning of the Senate vote on the Impeachment of President Trump". This short article, written as a speech to the Senate, does not delve into any of the details of impeachment. It instead ponders its Constitutional impacts and on the future consequences of impeachment.

01/23/20 The Goose and the Gander

Liberal/Progressives, and most especially Leftists, gave forgotten how to disagree with people who dispute them. They think that to disagree allows them to be disparaging, that criticism rather than critiquing is the best means of addressing their adversaries, and that to dismiss their adversaries rather than to answer them is the proper way to disagree with them.

Polite and respectful speech with their adversaries is not the normal means for Liberal/Progressives to disagree with their adversaries, but polite and respectful speech is a requirement for their adversaries. Pejoratives and reputational accusations by Liberal/Progressives are often the common means to assail their adversaries, and they have forgotten how to conduct a respectful and reasonable “Dialog & Debate”. Liberal/Progressives believe that they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior that they are, of course, always correct. And to be always correct means that those that disagree with them are unintelligent, uneducated, immoral, and therefore wrong and that their adversaries can be dismissed and disregarded because they are wrong.

The Liberal/Progressives always require that their adversaries be factual and reasonable, prove their facts and assumptions, and be non-hypocritical, while they themselves have no responsibility for meeting their own standards. Liberal/Progressives often concentrate on the style of their adversaries in order to deflect from the substance of their arguments. And due to Political Correctness, they determine what is the appropriate style which gives them the advantage.

And Liberal/Progressives have no long-term memory. They will say what is politically expedient at the moment while forgetting that they have said things in the past that are diametrically opposed to their current comments. A good example of this is in their protestations for a fair Senate Impeachment Trial while there were no remonstrations about an unfair House Impeachment Investigation. This is because “Fair” is a word that they utilize to mean whatever is advantageous to Liberal/Progressives is fair, and whatever is advantageous to their adversaries is unfair.

As to the charge that the Liberal/Progressives adversaries utilize these same tactics this is true. The difference is that the Liberal/Progressives have been utilizing these tactics, by both their leaders and followers, for decades (see my “Marque de Queensberry Rules vs a Barroom Brawl” Chirp for more information), and in a vitriolic manner. While as to the adversaries of Liberal/Progressives this has become more frequent in the recent past but is much less vitriolic, especially by the leadership.

For Liberal/Progressives “What’s good for the Goose is good for the Gander” has morphed into “Do as I say and not as I do”. It’s past time to Cook the Liberal/Progressives Goose and stop this nonsense.

01/20/20 The Constitutional Founding Fathers Goals

To understand why the Constitution was drafted and adopted you need to understand the historical governmental and socio-economic environment at the time of the founding, and the fears of the Constitutional Founding Fathers due to this environment. The American Constitution was formulated and passed to institute a Continental Republic for several reasons:

My new article on this subject examines the historical governmental and socio-economic environment of this time, and the  "Constitutional Founding Fathers Goals".

01/19/20 Should the Civil Service be Abolished?

My new article examines how the Civil Service was created with the presumption that civil service employees would be responsive to Executive authority and policy, and would put the interests of the people of the United States above their own interests, and how this is no longer the case. This Article “Should the Civil Service be Abolished?” examines the pernicious effects of the modern attitude of many civil servants.

01/18/20 Calm and Collected

Both my wife and I received some minor disturbing news recently. While talking it over with my wife she remarked how calm and collected I was about the news. She then asked how I could remain so calm and collected. This gave me pause to think about why I could remain calm and collected. I, of course, recalled my “Pearls of Wisdom” in formulating my answer to her. But my response revealed that I had additional Pearls of Wisdom that I needed to elucidate. I have, therefore, update my article to contain these new Pearls of Wisdom. I hope that you will reread, or read for the first time, these Pearls as they can be beneficial to your life.

01/17/20 Marque de Queensberry Rules vs a Barroom Brawl

The Marquess of Queensberry Rules, also known as Queensbury Rules, is a code of generally accepted rules in the sport of boxing. A Barroom Brawl is a conflict with no rules. And both are practiced, by all sides, in politics. All is fair in love, war, and politics is the phrase often utilized to express this.

The Democrat Party only fights by the political Marque de Queensberry Rules when it is to their advantage. Otherwise, they engage in a political Barroom Brawl which is usually to their advantage (given the liberal/progressive leanings of the mainstream media – see my Observation “Modern Journalism” and Article “Slander & Libel on Social Media and Journalism”). The Republican Party, until recently, occasionally engaged in a political Barroom Brawl but most often utilized the political Marque de Queensberry rules. This was mainly done by Republicans due to their fear of being pilloried by the mainstream media.

However, all of this has changed with the campaign and election of President Trump.  President Trump is a barroom brawler, but only after someone has started the barroom brawl. This is one of the reasons why the Democrats, the Mainstream Media, and their supporters hate (sic) him. They no longer can dictate the rules of the fight nor the Politically Correct language of the fight. President Trump’s tweeting and rallies can bypass the traditional means of communicating to the public, which is biased against him, and he speaks directly to the public with his tweets and rallies. His sometimes crude and rude language draws attention to what he is saying or tweeting and therefore spreads his message.

I do not particularly care for the words or tones of his tweets, but I understand the need for them. It is the leveling of the playing field and provides the means to even the fight between Democrats and the Republicans, and the Conservatives and the Liberals/Progressives. For too long this fight has been lopsided in favor of the Democrats and Liberals/Progressives, as they have enjoyed the support of the Mainstream Media and Cultural Media. This has inured the American public to the Liberals/Progressives viewpoints rather than examining the substance of their viewpoints.

Some claim that President Trump is not acting “Presidential”, but the last Republican President, George W. Bush, who acted presidential was pilloried by his opponents in an uncivil manner. This pillorying hampered the George W. Bush agenda and compromised his ability to implement his agenda and policies. He would often have to unduly compromise and temporize his agenda and policies as a result of this pillorying. President Trump does not wish this happen to him, as he believes that his agenda and policies or critical to righting the course of America which he believes foundered and decline under the previous administrations.

I believe that President Trump should act and speak more presidential, but only after journalist and his critics act and speak more journalistically and reasonably. I would much prefer "A Civil Society", but uncivility must sometimes be utilized against uncivility to counter the perverse impacts of pillorying.

01/16/20 What They Said and What They Meant

It is an all too common occurrence in today's political environment that a politician will say something, and then shortly thereafter their spokesperson will clarify the statement, or their supporters will explain what they really meant. Usually, the clarification or explanation is not an elucidation but an attempt to deflect the political harm the statement may have invoked. And this is often done by utilizing the technique of “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors” or “Torturous and Convoluted Reasoning”.

If this tactic is successful it lets the politician off the hook for what they have said. But they should remain on the hook until they themselves clarify their statement. Hopefully, this would also force them to think about what they said, and perhaps, think about what they are saying before they say it. To accept a clarifying statement or explanation, other than by the politician who spoke it, has a perverse effect. The perverse effect of not being sure of where a politician really stands on an issue or policy and their position is open to interpretation by the words of others. An interpretation that is usually not what their position really is but in being a nebulous position.

I expect that this tactic will continue to occur if we continue to allow this tactic to be successful. Let us, therefore, not be acceptable of this tactic, but instead examine what they really said and leave what they meant to the listeners' discernment.

01/14/20 Libertarians and Republicans, Democrats and Leftists

I am a registered Republican, although I am actually “A Constitutionalist Conservative” with a Libertarian streak. So why am I not a Libertarian instead of a Republican? Because I choose to have an impact on my beliefs. The Libertarian Party is small, but growing, but has no real impact on governmental laws and policies as it has insufficient numbers to have any impact. I would much prefer a Libertarian Wing of the Republican Party that would pull the party in its direction, much like the leftists have pulled the Democratic party to the left. This is a pragmatic decision on my part.

But some would ask “What about the centrists and bipartisanship?”. I believe that our country is at a point where it needs to decide which direction it wishes to become. It needs both the left and right wings to elucidate their positions so that we can decide on our direction. To equivocate and then proceed in a left or right, and sometimes both directions, will not help us to reach a decision. It will only continue the partisan bickering and stalemates we have seen in the last twenty years. And it is the centrists and the bipartisan who have brought this about by their unwillingness to make a clear decision.

This is why the 2020 Presidential elections may be consequential. The left has pulled the Democrat Party to the left, and President Trump has pulled the Republican Party to the right. A clear choice may become available to the American people so that they may decide which direction they wish to proceed. The centrists need to decide where they wish this country to go in order to end this stalemate. So, I say let the games begin and let us make a clear decision on our future direction.

01/13/20 Should the FISA Court be Eliminated

With FBI Director Christopher Wray submitting his reform plan to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) after a scathing inspector general report found 17 errors in the FBI’s surveillance applications, some have called for the elimination of FISA court as unconstitutional. In the article “Ball of Collusion and FISA Reform”, By Andrew C. McCarthy, he has suggested that the FISA Court should be eliminated. He makes a cogent argument for its elimination and it is a persuasive read. However, he makes a suggestion for an alternative that I believe is impracticable. He argues for stronger Congressional oversight instead of a FISC Court. Given what we have seen with the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committees hearings on Impeachment in the partisanship, lack of due process, and the ignoring of the rule of law I doubt that a House Committee would conduct proper oversight. I am unsure whether a Senate Committee could also do this given the current rancor that exists in the Senate. We would probably have a deadlock on decisions by these committees leading to negative consequences regarding the purposes for which the FISA Court was created to address.

Postscript – The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) has stunned court-watchers by selecting David Kris -- a former Obama administration lawyer to oversee the FBI's implementation of reforms in the wake of a damning Department of Justice inspector general report last year. David Kris had written extensively in support of the FBI's surveillance practices prior to the DOJ Inspector General’s report. Davis Kris had also panned the now-vindicated 2018 memo produced by House Intelligence Committee ranking member Devin Nunes' panel, which asserted a series of surveillance abuses by the FBI against former Trump aide Carter Page. DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz later substantiated Nunes' claims, noting that the FBI had made numerous materially false representations to the FISC (see Jonathan Turley's article "FISA Court Selects Lawyer Who Vehemently Denied FBI Misled FISA To Oversee FBI Reforms)".

A federal judge will disqualify or recuse themselves from a case, as per the United States Code (the Judicial Code) under the "Disqualification of justice, judge, or magistrate judge" standards for judicial disqualification or recusal. These standards state that a federal judge "shall disqualify himself in any proceeding in which his impartiality might reasonably be questioned". The section also provides that a judge is disqualified "where he has a personal bias or prejudice concerning a party, or personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary facts concerning the proceeding"; when the judge has previously served as a lawyer or witness concerning the same case or has expressed opinions concerning its outcome. Using the same standards for disqualification or recusal of a federal judge David Kris should never have been appointed to this position.

It is hard to think of a worse appointment to oversee the FBI’s FISC reforms. David Kris lacks the credibility and impartiality to perform these reforms, and the American people should be suspicious of his reform efforts. We need a fair-minded person with the impartiality and integrity to reform the FBI’s FISC standards and procedures. David Kris is not this person. David Kris was wrong about the FBI's surveillance practices, he was wrong about Nunes' claims, and now he is expected to put right what he was wrong about by overseeing the FBI reforms of FISC practices. Two wrongs don’t make him right for this responsibility. If this appointment stands then I would support the elimination of the FISA Court. 

01/12/20 Is it Impeachable?

I have recently finished reading the book “The Original Constitution: What It Actually Said and Meant” 3rd Edition by Robert G. Natelson. A very interesting and informative book that is full of information that even many experts don't know. From it, you will learn; The Constitution’s hidden meanings. Many of its words and phrases meant something different in the 18th century than they do today. How the founders wanted the Constitution interpreted. Is it really a “living” document? How the original Constitution protected your rights. What a privilege is, and how it is different from a right. How the framers were ahead of their time in respecting women and minorities.

Robert G. Natelson's meticulous studies of the Constitution's original meaning have been relied on repeatedly in the U.S. Supreme Court, both by justices and by the parties. Professor Natelson was a law professor for 25 years at three different universities. He taught Constitutional Law, Advanced Constitutional, Constitutional History, and First Amendment courses. He is now the Senior Fellow in Constitutional Jurisprudence at the Independence Institute in Denver, Colorado.

In Chapter 11 of this book, “Removal from Office”, I read a very good summary of the grounds for impeachment:

“… the Constitutional grounds for impeachment may be summarized as (1) treason, (2) bribery, or (3) other breaches of public trust – such as serious violations of the law, disloyalty, self-dealing, abuse of power, failing to account for funds, and negligence to performance of duty. That negligence was a ground for impeachment demonstrates that an official might be removed for failure to act properly as well as for acting wrongfully.”

The question then is “Has President Trump met any of these grounds for impeachment?”. I would only hope that you keep two things in mind when considering the impeachment of President Trump. They are:

In judicial proceedings there is the concept of if two equally reasonable explanations of a defendant’s actions are given, one in favor of the defendant and one detrimental to the defendant, then the favorable explanation must be utilized to determine the guilt or innocence of the defendant. This is done because the prosecutor has a burden to prove the detrimental reason. To believe that a defendant acted in one way or another is insufficient. You must prove by direct evidence or direct witness testimony the reason the defendant acted the way they did. If you cannot prove one reason or the other reason for the defendant’s actions, then you must find for the defendant’s reason. Without proof of the detrimental reason for the defendant’s actions then the defendant’s reasonable explanation must be presumed to be the real reason for their actions.

To claim that invoking Executive privilege is Obstruction of Justice would mean that every President has obstructed justice, as every President has invoked Executive Privilege. When a President makes this claim, and Congress disagrees, the normal course of action is for Congress to negotiate with the President or to bring the matter to the courts for adjudication. It should be remembered that too adjudicate before a court on a dispute of law is not obstructing justice, it is upholding justice. To not cooperate with the court’s adjudication by refusing to produce witnesses, or to not respond to or withholding information the court has ordered, or when you lose the dispute and refuse to obey the ruling of the court, can you be considered to be obstructing justice. To claim otherwise is a Non-Sequitur.

Given the above can it be said that President Trump has committed an impeachable offense?  For this answer, and more on my Impeachment thoughts, I would direct you my articles on “Impeachment”.

01/10/20 The Devil is in the Details

The Devil is in the Details is a truism that must always be remembered when considering an issue in our personal, work-related, or public lives. My new article "The Devil is in the Details"  considers four devils; The Bottom Line, The Debatable, The Verbal versus the Written, and The Philosophical versus the Practicable.

01/09/20 Witnesses for the Impeachment Trial

Whether to allow new witnesses to testify in the Senate Trial of President Trump’s Senate Impeachment trial is more than a question of evidence or fairness. It is also a Constitutional question as to the roles and responsibilities of the House and Senate in Impeachment. My new article “Impeachment Senate Trial II” examines this question.

01/07/20 The Age of Empowerment

In my Article “Cult of Youth” I examine today's fascination with youth. The main point is that the brain does not mature until about 22 to 24 years of age, and the last part of the brain to mature is the prefrontal lobes that are responsible for decision making. The ability to ponder your decisions, to think of the future consequences of our decisions, and to postpone immediate gratification for future benefits is the final step in brain maturation. As such, until this happens you will make unwise decisions.

That is why it is so difficult to reason with the young, to get them to consider the future consequences of their decisions, and to check their impulses. And the people who would take advantage of the young know this, and they know how to utilize this to take advantage of the young. Advertisers, businesspeople, artists, entertainers, filmmakers, music makers, tobacconist and alcohol and drug dealers, activists, and politicians are aware of this. That is why they target youth for what they are pitching. They want them to consume their product and services, or to support their agenda. They also know that if you get the young to fall for this that it will stay with them for many more years, and perhaps a lifetime. It takes a lot of knowledge, intelligence, thought, reasoning, and experience to change the habits and predilections of your youth. This is why we see such a cult of youth in today's society and the extolment of youth. The exploiters want to hook them and lead them to where they want them to go.

And this situation is exacerbated by our current culture and educational system. Too often they try to get to believe something rather than think about something. And far too often youth is not taught how to think but what to think. This is dangerous not only for the individual but for society as a whole. Dangerous to the individual for self-obvious reasons, and dangerous to society as we allow these immature minds to influence laws and social policy through social activism and elections. And perhaps the most dangerous to the welfare of society is the politicians and activists who would exploit the youth of America. The ability to sway the youth to elect a candidate, or support a policy position or law, could be the deciding factor in an election or the implementation of a social policy or law. Abstract thinking and thoughtful analysis, mediating conflicting thoughts, making choices between right and wrong, and predicting the probable outcomes of actions or events are critical to assure that the most helpful and least harmful social policy or law is enacted. I believe our Founding Fathers intuitively knew this about youth, and that was why the put an age requirement in the Constitution for holding public office.

Given above I would seriously suggest that we raise the age of adult consent closer to 22, rather than the current 18 years (or proposed 16 years) that it currently is. And we should also tell the politicians, activists, political and social commentators, and journalists to knock it off regarding extolling youth. You are not extolling them but exploiting them.

01/06/20 And the Show Goes On

Due to the lack of Impeachment activities, I have not felt the need to write another article on this subject. However, this lack of Impeachment activities needs to be commented upon. Comments that I do not believe that I have anything to contribute beyond what has been said by the following distinguished legal scholars:

All three of these columns encapsulates the current impeachment inactivities.

01/05/20 To be or not to be a Programmer?

Uncle Joe Biden has suggested that coal miners learn to be programmers after he shuts down the coal industry – an unwise shutdown in of itself. Not only was this disrespectful to the coal mining industry but it was also disrespectful to all programmers. It implied that anybody could be a programmer. Having spent fifty years in the Information Technology business I can assure all that not everybody can be a programmer. It takes a certain intelligence, ability, and talent to be a programmer. Intelligence, ability, and talent that is distinct and not something that everybody processes. It also takes a certain lifestyle that elevates the grind of programming above other personal activities. Coming in early and working late, working nights and weekends, eating and snacking at your computer, and the depreciating of social interactions because of this are common to computer programming (they aren’t known as geeks for no reason).

Therefore, Uncle Joe Biden has not only disrespected coal miners, but he has also disrespect programmers. And both groups should be offended by his remarks.

01/04/20 Poisoning the Well

President Trump's deadly airstrike that killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani at Baghdad's international airport has provoked many remarks by Democrats and their supporters that President Trump did not consult with Congress before this action. Under normal circumstances, this consultation would have probably occurred. But these are not normal circumstances. And the unusual circumstances are “Impeachment”.

The conduct of Congress involving impeachment has shown that Congress cannot be trusted to render a fair and impartial assessment of anything that President Trump does. The rush to judgment, lack of Due Process, and the failure to abide by the Rule of Law by Congress has demonstrated Congress’s untrustworthiness. The selective leaking of testimony harmful to President Trump has shown that Congress cannot keep quiet where quietude is needed. The concealment of testimony favorable to President Trump has shown that Congress cannot be impartial. Both the leaking and concealment of impeachment testimony evidences that the Democrats are so partisan that they lack the requisite reasonableness required to act dispassionately.

There have also been lamenting by Democrats and their supporters that President Trump did not share with Congress the intelligence that led him to take these actions. But intelligence such as this is “actionable” intelligence. As such, it contains information about who General Soleimani was plotting with, where the plots were originating, what the targets were, and the dates and times of the plots to commit terrorism. Intelligence that is useful to thwart future terrorism. This intelligence cannot be shared with a Congress that cannot be trusted to keep it secret, nor should it be shared.

There has also been carping by Democrats and their supporters that President Trump has no plan for what may occur after this military action. Not revealing a strategic plan to Congress or the public does not mean that there is no strategic plan. There may, or may not, be a plan. However, revealing a strategic plan is not wise. It gives your enemies the ability to counter and thwart your plan which is not a very wise move. It also gives your political opponents fuel for the fire to criticize your plan which may make it more difficult to carry out the plan.

Under these circumstances how can President Trump trust that Congress will keep secret plans for military actions, let alone the intelligence that led to the need for military action, and the after-action plan? He cannot, and should not, consult with Congress under these circumstances. Consultation with Congress, where intelligence, military actions, and after-action plans could, and probably would, be leaked could mean disruption or disorder of the military action which could lead to unnecessary deaths or injuries to those involved in the military action, and perhaps the disruption of the sources and methods utilized to obtain this intelligence. Revealing the after-action plan could compromise the plan and make it unworkable. This is a dangerous situation where the President cannot share military actions, intelligence and after-action plans with Congress. Military actions, intelligence, and after-action plans that are critical to assuring the safety and welfare of all Americans wherever they may be.

Therefore, the Democrats have poisoned the well through their partisan impeachment, and they have only themselves to blame.

01/03/20 Giving the Devil His Due

“Be careful what you wish for; you may receive it.”, “Rue the Day”, and “Giving the Devil His Due” are idioms that we are all familiar with and elucidate kernels of human truths.

Be careful what you wish for as you may, and probably will, encounter “The Law of Unintended Consequences". The law of unintended consequences, often cited but rarely defined, is that actions of people—and especially of government—always have effects that are unanticipated or unintended, in its outcomes of unexpected benefits, unexpected drawbacks, and perverse results. 

Many of us, and society, have “Rued the Day” when we have abandoned our principles to achieve a goal. Whether this goal was accepting some bad to accomplish a good, done for convenience or to avoid inconvenience, or doing the popular rather than the principled, we have compromised or temporized. And we often later regret this decision. As I have stated in my “Pearls of Wisdom”; “Doing the right thing for all” and “Doing the Right Thing for Yourself” is most often doing the best thing, no matter how difficult it is to do.

In “A Man for All Seasons” Sir Thomas More debates his son-in-law on “Giving the Devil His Due”:

In a critical exchange, More is accused by his son-in-law William Roper of putting the law before morality and that More would “give the Devil the benefit of law!” When More asks if Roper would instead “cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?,” Roper proudly declares “Yes, I’d cut down every law in England to do that!” More responds by saying “And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned ‘round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man’s laws, not God’s! And if you cut them down, and you're just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake!”

“Giving the Devil His Due” in America is accomplished by "Justice and The Rule of Law in America". These principles are critical to preserve our Freedoms, Liberties, and safety. Not just for the good or bad person, not for the guilty or innocent person, not for the strong or weak person, not for the rich or poor person, not for the powerful or powerless person, but for all persons.

So, let us “Be careful what we wish for” and “Give the Devil His Due” to preserve these principles, or we may “Rue the Day” when we abandon these principles.

01/02/20 Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

I have consolidated and rewritten several of my Miscellaneous Articles in a new section "Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics". These articles examine the issues that I believe are misrepresented, misreported, and misunderstood in America. To solve these problems requires that we understand the true nature of these problems. Unfortunately, because of the misinformation on these problems, this is not possible. Politicians, Activists, and Journalists are more interested in scoring political points, along with other motivations, that interfere with our understanding. Let us all begin to understand the true nature of these problems so that we can work together on solving these problems. I would highly recommend that you read this articles to gain a better understanding of these Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics:

01/01/20 Imperialism

I thought I would start the new decade out with a bang. So here it goes:

Imperialism has a well-deserved bad reputation, as Imperialism was utilized to exploit the wealth of the conquered and suppress the human rights of the conquered people, to the benefit of the conquers. Imperialism of this type should never again be allowed.

However, Socialism, Communism, Dictatorships, Monarchs, Oligarchies, and One Rule governments are no better. In all these forms of government, the Natural Rights of its citizens are violated, and poverty and destitution run rampant. The misery and suffering of its citizens are heartrending.

Today we have eliminated Imperialism, but we have many governments that have a facade of self-rule but are no better for their people. And in a global economy and the free flow of peoples across nations, this is dangerous. Dangerous in that it creates economic instability and breeds “Terrorism”. Terrorism is a form that not only impacts small groups of people but could also impact an entire nation(s). Nuclear, biological, chemical, financial, communications, transportation, and other forms of broadband terrorism could devastate the world.  This situation must be recognized and addressed.

Perhaps it is time we establish a new form of Imperialism. Imperialism not for the benefit of the conquerors but for the benefit of the conquered. The benefit of establishing Democratic-Republic institutions, the Rule of Law, and a free and capitalistic economy for the conquered. This would not only establish the Natural Rights of its citizens but also alleviate the poverty and destitution within the conquered nation.

OUTRAGEOUS, Outrageous, many of you are probably thinking! And I agree. It is outrageous, and deliberately so. But hopefully, many of you are now thinking about this problem. And perhaps this thinking will lead to some possible solutions to this problem. I can hope, but I do not expect, we will address this problem.

12/31/19 A House Divided

As we close this year, I would like to reflect on a speech that Illinois Senatorial candidate Abraham Lincoln gave in Springfield, Illinois on June 16, 1858, in which he warned about a divided nation. This warning was not about a civil war that may occur, but a warning about not deciding, as a people, on which direction to take on an issue of great moral and civil importance. The beginning of this speech is very telling:

 “If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could then better judge what to do, and how to do it.

We are now far into the fifth year, since a policy was initiated, with the avowed object, and confident promise, of putting an end to slavery agitation.

Under the operation of that policy, that agitation has not only, not ceased, but has constantly augmented.

In my opinion, it will not cease, until a crisis shall have been reached, and passed.

"A house divided against itself cannot stand."

I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free.

I do not expect the Union to be dissolved -- I do not expect the house to fall -- but I do expect it will cease to be divided.

It will become all one thing or all the other.

Either the opponents of slavery, will arrest the further spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward, till it shall become alike lawful in all the States, old as well as new -- North as well as South.”

Today in America we seem to have more, wider, and deeper divisions than since the Civil War except, perhaps, the Civil Rights–Vietnam War era. Abortion, Global Warming, Gun Control, Immigration, Impeachment, and Judicial Appointees are but some of the issues that deeply divide America. The meaning and practice of "Justice and The Rule of Law in America" are in question. And these divisions are becoming wider and deeper in America. We, as a people, must take stock and decide on these issues. And these decisions cannot equivocate nor be compromises but must be definitive or we risk becoming ‘A house divided against itself that cannot stand’.

The 2020 Presidential election is the best means to achieve this definitiveness, as we have a Democratic Party that has become more leftist and a Republican Party that has drifted more to the right of the political spectrum. The centrist must definitively decide which direction we should proceed or be responsible for the continued partisanship and rancor that exists and perhaps, ultimately, lead to a great civil unrest that would collapse our house.

02/29/19 The Village Idiot’s Representative

In America all groups deserve representatives in Congress. I have reached the conclusion that our Village Idiots also require representation. Fortunately, they already have a representative. I would hereby nominate Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as the official representative of the Village Idiots of America for the reasons I have explained in my Chirp about her. Let us pass a Congressional Resolution in the new year that officially names her The Village Idiots Representative.

12/28/19 Que Sera, Sera

Que Sera, Sera is a song written by the team of Jay Livingston and Ray Evans that was first published in 1956, and most famously sung by Doris Day in the movie “The Man Who Knew Too Much”. A beautifully simple lyrics and music that has inspired many people. My article “Que Sera, Sera” explains my interpretation of this song.

12/27/19 The Philosophical versus the Practicable

In my Articles and Observations, I have often waxed philosophically along with being practicable. This can often lead you to believe that there is a dichotomy in my thoughts. But there is no such dichotomy. Before I become practicable, I will muse philosophically, then base my practicability on my philosophical thoughts. If there is a dichotomy between the two, I will try to first resolve it philosophically before being practicable. Sometimes, however, the philosophical cannot be practicable, or the practicable conflicts with the philosophical. Its called life. In such cases, I try to determine what is more important of the legal, moral, or ethical thing to do. This may not always be perfect, but what in life is perfect? I simply try to do my best given the circumstances. When this happens, I often find myself humming “Que Sera Sera”.

Update -I have updated my thoughts on this subject and added additional thoughts in a new article "The Devil is in the Details". The Devil is in the Details is a truism that must always be remembered when considering an issue in our personal, work-related, or public lives. My new article considers four devils; The Bottom Line, The Debatable, The Verbal versus the Written, and The Philosophical versus the Practicable.

12/26/19 Human Rights, The Bill of Rights, and The Four Freedoms

A recent discussion at my cigar lounge has led me to meditate on the articles in which I have expounded on these subjects. The result is that I have modified and aggregated my articles on these subjects. These updated Articles “Human Rights”, “The Bill of Rights”, and “The Four Freedoms” should be read in order to comprehend my thoughts on these subjects.

12/19/19 Impeachment Senate Trial I addendum

In my "Impeachment Senate Trial I" article I explained my disagreements with an abbreviated Senate trial. After viewing and pondering the speech Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell gave on the Senate floor about the House Articles of Impeachment I found myself remembering one of my “Pearls of Wisdom - Be Prepared to Change Your Mind” and the words of wisdom of Benjamin Franklin on changing your mind. I have, therefore, changed my mind. You can read my Addendum on this change of mind here.

12/16/19 Polite and Respectful, with Facts, Intelligent, and Reasoning

I have often commented on the importance of being polite and respectful. The reason that I think it is important is not only for a "A Civil Society" but it is important for your own sake. If you can be polite and respectful you can feel good about yourself and have more self-confidence. If you also expended the effort to “Be the Better Person” you will feel even better about yourself. If you utilize “With Facts, Intelligence, And Reasoning” while being polite and respectful so much the better. If you have done all these things in your interactions with others you can walk away, despite what may occur, knowing that you have done the right thing. Remorse, shame, and guilt cannot burden you if you have been polite and respectful.

Polite and respectful doesn’t mean that you should not hurt someone else’s feelings. After all, someone, somewhere will have their feelings hurt by what anyone says. That others feelings will be hurt is not a valid reason for not saying something as I have explained in my “04/01/19 I don’t care if your feelings are hurt” Chirp as reiterated below:

“I don’t care if your feelings are hurt, as long as I am expressing reasonable and intelligent positions in a polite and respectful manner and doing so in an honest and truthful way. I care about my spouse, parents, and children’s feelings, and perhaps my other family and friends’ feelings may be, and I am sensitive to their feelings. However, I have no control over what you do, think, and feel. I can only control what I do, think and feel. Your response to what I may say and do is a reflection on your thoughts and feelings, not on my thoughts and feelings. You may also be misinterpreting what I do or say, or perhaps I may be miscommunicating. If I am miscommunicating something, I will accept a critique but not criticism (see my “Criticism vs. Critique” Chirp), and I will try to do better or restate my thoughts. But for you to say that your feelings are hurt is not a valid objection or argument to what I do or say. Only a reasonable and intelligent response, done in a polite and respectful manner, and doing so in an honest and truthful way, is a valid response to what I do or say. To make hurt feelings a valid response will result in the shutting down of free speech, as someone, somewhere, feelings may be hurt by what is being said or done, and nobody will be able to say or do anything.”

You should remember that being Polite and Respectful, with Facts, Intelligent, and Reasoning is a reflection on your character and intelligence and not a statement of approval or disapproval of the other person's character or intelligence.

12/15/19 If the Shoe Were on the Other Foot

Hypocrisy runs rampant in Washington D.C... So rampant that it is hardly worth mentioning. It is part and parcel of being a politician and has even effects appointed officials and bureaucrats as well. I expect nothing else from these people. However, I would hope that honest journalists, political commentators, and academics and scholars would a least try to resist hypocrisy. Alas, this is usually not to be. So, when I listen or read these people's comments I always apply my rule of thumb “If the shoe were on the other foot” to determine the non-hypocrisy of these people.

It is a very simple rule to apply and make a judgment. Whenever I hear them comment or write something, I simply ask myself if they were talking or writing about someone of the opposite party affiliation, opposite political ideology, or opposite policy position would they say the same thing. If the answer is “No” then I realize they are being hypocritical. If the answer is “Yes” then they are being honest. I pay attention and consider the honest persons' opinions and laugh at the hypocritical persons. Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately for my own sanity, I find myself laughing much more than considering.

I am not so much disturbed by this from most of the people involved, but I am disturbed by this from academics and scholars. Academics and scholars have a responsibility to their profession to be reasonable and honest, and to fail in this responsibility is to fail in their profession. As to honest political commentators, I make note of who they are and try to consider their viewpoints no matter what positions they may take. As for honest journalists I have given up all hope as they are few and far between (but there are still some of them out there).

Therefore, I would suggest that we all apply the rule of thumb “If the shoe were on the other foot” when paying attention to political commentary from all.

12/14/19 Inspector General Report

The" Inspector General Review of Four FISA Applications and Other Aspects of the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane Investigation" has been released. As I expected this report has the shortcomings that I explained in my Chirp on “Inspector Generals”. My new Article “The Inspector General Report on FISA Applications” examines my concerns about this report.

12/13/19 Impeachment Hearings IV

From Quid Quo Pro to Bribery, to Abuse of Power and Obstruction of Justice the Impeachment bandwagon rolls on. The current Articles of Impeachment that are being drafted reveal the House Democrats lack comprehension or understanding of their Constitutional responsibilities, or their willingness to ignore these responsibilities to achieve a political goal. Either way, they do not reflect well on the House Democrats. The two main Articles of Impeachment deal with Abuse of Power and Obstruction of Justice. My new article "Impeachment Hearings IV" comments on this topic.

12/12/19 Impeachment Senate Trial I

Suggestions have been made, mostly by Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell and Judiciary Committee Chairman Senator Lindsey Graham, that the Senate trial of the Impeachment of President Trump be an abbreviated effort until the Senators can determine the guilt or innocence of President Trump. I strongly disagree! I have written a short article "Impeachment Senate Trial I" that explains my disagreements.

12/11/19 The Fire of Mankind

Fire – unexpected and uncontrollable is a primal fear of all animal species. No species knew when or where a fire would occur, and when it occurred it was uncontrollable. The be afraid of fire, and to flee from fire, was necessary for survival. To this day this is true for all but one species- Hominoidae, and one genus – homo. My new science article "The Fire of Mankind" examines fire in the importance of human evolution.

12/10/19 Cyberterrorism

The commercial, financial, and economic structure of the 21st century is dependent on computers, electronic communications, and other forms of information technology (i.e. Cyber). All of these forms of cyber technology are subject to hacking, malware, and information terrorism. Whether it is the stealing, modifying, or the creation of false information, the taking over or disabling of computers, the disruption of electronic communications, or the false control of other computerized controlled technology they are all subject to cyberterrorism.

The FBI defines "cyber terrorism" as “premeditated, politically motivated attack against information, computer systems, computer programs, and data which results in violence against non-combatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents”. NATO defines cyberterrorism as "[a] cyberattack using or exploiting computer or communication networks to cause sufficient destruction or disruption to generate fear or to intimidate a society into an ideological goal”.

However you may define cyberterrorism it is an existential threat, for it could not only destroy the world’s economy but do incredible damage to the world’s infrastructure. It must be rooted out and destroyed where it may occur. And because it can be done from afar it respects no national boundaries or limitations. All countries must combat cyberterrorism, and those countries that do not should be severely punished and forced, including militarily, into cooperation.

Just as in the latter half of the 20th century we were concerned that we would blow ourselves up in a nuclear war, in the 21st century we should be concerned that we will crash ourselves down via cyberterrorism.

12/09/19 A Constitutionalist

Constitutional Conservatives and Constitutional Liberals place their constitutionalism before their conservatism or liberalism. They are constitutionalist first, and they attempt to fit their policies within the constitutional framework. What they have in common is their commitment to “Human Rights”, “Equal Protections”, and the “Justice and The Rule of Law in America “ as fundamental principles. They also believe that the Constitution is the best framework for the establishment and continuance of a “Democratic-Republic”.

Unfortunately, however, many conservatives and most liberals/progressives/leftists do not embrace these fundamental principles. They are more interested in achieving their policy goals than they are in following these principles. They deem their ends as justified so therefore the means are warranted. They often cloak themselves in moral righteousness or intellectual superiority, never doubting their own infallibility, nor consider “The Law of Unintended Consequences“ of their actions. As a result, they are antithetical to these principles.

But these principles are necessary for “A Just Government and a Just Society”. We need more Constitutional Conservatives and Constitutional Liberals, and for them to join forces and insist on the preservation of these principles, to preserve our "Freedoms, Liberties, and Justice for All".

12/08/19 A Democratic-Republic

Most people claim that we are a democracy, but we are not! We are a Democratic-Republic. A Democracy is a doctrine that the numerical majority of an organized group can make decisions binding on the whole group. A Republic is a political system in which the supreme power lies in a select body of citizens who make policies and laws for all the people.

The idea behind a Democratic-Republic is that people get to elect their leaders (democratic), and the leaders set laws and policies for the people (republic). This is done to assure that the mob passions of the people are tempered by the dispassionate reasoning of the leaders. This, hopefully, will assure that wise policies and laws are created, and that the rights of the minority are protected against the majority rule.

While this has not always worked well in the United States, it has worked sufficiently well to create a stable government. History has taught us that governments that are only Democratic have dissolved rather quickly as the people segregate into groups pitted against each other, and the majority group imposing its will on the minority groups, leading to civil unrest and even civil war. History has also taught us that governments that are a Republic without being elected by the people tend to become despotic, which were eventually overthrown by the people or conquered by another people. Our Founding Fathers were well aware of this history and tried to prevent this situation.

One of the ways they accomplished this was to establish a Democratic-Republic form of government. They also established “Three branches of government” with a “Balance of Power” between the branches. Another way they did this was to establish an “Electoral College” for the election of a national leader who would represent all the people throughout the entire nation. Finally, they established “Justice and The Rule of Law in America”.

But these four items do not stand alone:

These items are interdependent upon each other, and you must have all of these items intact for a stable government. Take away or significantly modify any one of them and the others will fail. The reasons for this are many and varied but have been touched upon in my hyperlinked articles. 

The reason for this Chirp is a warning. A warning that when a politician advocates for the significant change or elimination of one of these items they are impacting the stability of our government. Let us all remember all this so that we may preserve our "Freedoms, Liberties, and Justice for All".

12/07/19 Inspector Generals

With the imminent release of the Judicial Department Inspector Generals report on the origins of the probe of President Trump’s campaign, transition, and administration I would like to comment on Inspector General’s duties and responsibilities in general. The Inspector General position is an important position that assists in discovering maladministration, maleficence, and corruption within Executive departments and agencies. However, it has several limitations that prevent it from doing a thorough job.

The Inspector General can only investigate the actions of the current employees of the individual departments and agencies for which they are responsible. If an employee leaves government service they cannot be compelled to be interviewed by the Inspector General. This allows for the possibility of an employee to escape an Inspector General review of their actions while they were employed by the government.

The Inspector General cannot interview employees of other departments and agencies for which they are not responsible. Therefore, if an employee within a department or agency works in concert with an employee of another department or agency they cannot interview the other department or agency employee. They must request an Inspector General review from the Inspector General of the other departments and agencies. These two limitations make it difficult, if not impossible, to conduct a thorough and comprehensive investigation.

This is why I have proposed that we create a Department of Inspector Generals that would combine all the current Inspector Generals into one department responsible to the President. Special protections and the duties and responsibilities of Inspector Generals in regard to the auditing of Executive Branch operations and personnel will be afforded by Congressional legislation, and the person interviewed shall have due process rights as defined by Congressional legislation.

12/06/19 Impeachment Hearings III 

I have just posted a new article on what constitutes “Treason, Bribery, and High crimes and misdemeanors?” as the House Judiciary Committee first hearing examines. This article “Impeachment Hearings III” examines my perspective on the answers to this question.

Sidechirp:

With Professor Jonathan Turley’s intellectual and reasoned testimony (both spoken and written) in opposition to the current impeachment he has written in an op-ed for The Hill on Thursday "Before I finished my testimony, my home and office were inundated with threatening messages and demands that I be fired from George Washington University for arguing that, while a case for impeachment can be made, it has not been made on this record,".

This is a perfect example of my Article “Modern American Fascism”, in that if you disagree with the left you need to be scorned and/or destroyed. All Americans should stand up for anyone’s Freedom of Speech, even speech that you disagree with.

11/22/19 Impeachment II

I have written a new Article on Impeachment Hearings II. As we have seen a parade of appointed officials and civil servants testify. But they seem to be testifying as to their opinions, presumptions, or inferences, while not much evidence is attested. This article examines the evidence, opinions, presumptions, and inferences regarding Impeachment.

11/21/19 Evidence

For justice to prevail you must have a just process. A just process in which Direct evidence is admitted, Circumstantial evidence is admitted if proven, Hearsay is only allowed under strict exceptions, and Presumptions are permitted in some (narrow) situations. This can be defined as follows:

In a just process, direct evidence reigns supreme while all the other evidence is supplemental. If the direct evidence contradicts the other evidence the direct evidence is the basis of proof and the other evidence may be disregarded.

11/19/19 What Sign are You?

For millennia astrologers have been casting charts to determine the future of a person or events. This is often done by plotting the positions of the stars and planets relative to arbitrarily defined constellations at their birth or at the time of significant events in their life. It is claimed by astrologers that there is a force in the universe that acts upon a person and influences their life based on these positions. However, only “The Fundamental Properties and Constants of the Universe” are known to science, and there are only “The Four Forces of Nature” known to science. My new Science Article "What Sign are You" examines Astrology in respect to these fundamental properties, constants, and forces.

11/18/19 Classical Music Chirps

I have added a new section to this web site "Classical Music Chirps which are paragraph sized succinct comments, and recommendations for listening to some of the most understandable and enjoyable Classical Music by all who listen to it, even those who are not all that interested in Classical Music. I hope that you will take the time and enjoy this Classical Music.

11/17/19 The Law of Unintended Consequences

I have often mentioned The Law of Unintended Consequences in many of my articles. So often that I have decided to make it a separate article on "The Law of Unintended Consequences” for easier reference. I have also made several improvements to this short article. I hope you will reread this improved article.

11/16/19 Passions

Human Rights”, “A Just Government and a Just Society”, and “Justice and The Rule of Law” are my biggest passions. I believe that all three are necessary for Freedom and Liberty to exist. And Freedom and Liberty are essential to be fully human. As a result, I have a passion for American History, as seen in my Articles on “History”.

I am also passionate about applying my “Pearls of Wisdom” in my life. Knowledge and Reasoning in all I say and do are very important to me. This topic is examined in my Observations  “Knowledge, Experience, and Wisdom”, Knowing vs. Understanding”, and “Reasoning”.

Science and God are also passions of mine. I am a firm believer that science is the best way of explaining the physical properties and physical laws of the universe. I also am a firm believer that God created our universe and established its physical properties and physical laws. And I see no conflict between the views of Science and God. Science is the explanation of how God created the universe, and God is the explanation of why we have the physical properties and physical laws of the universe. Science cannot prove, or disprove, the existence of God, as God is outside the realm of science. For more on these passions see my articles on “Science” and “Religion”.

Classical Music is another passion of mine. For more about why this is so, I would direct you to my rumination “Classical Music Appreciation”.

When it comes to the above passions, and your assaults upon them, I live by the phrase “Don’t Tread on Me”, because I will fight back if I believe that you are violating them.

I have interests in many other things, but not the passion for them as I do for those that I have spoken above.

11/15/19 Impeachment

I have, and will continue to, create a series of articles in which I examine impeachment and the current impeachment of President Trump. I would suggest that you review them from top to bottom to get a fuller understanding of my thoughts. The Chirp "Hearsay/Gossip" that follows should also be reviewed for a better understanding of my thoughts.

11/14/19 Hearsay/Gossip

Verbal Hearsay (heard through another rather than directly) is the legal term that is equivalent to everyday gossip. And Verbal Hearsay/Gossip is notoriously unreliable, lacking in facts, and often untrue. It may also rise to the level of Defamation, Slander and Libel. As explained in the Wikipedia article on “Hearsay in United States law”:

Hearsay is an out-of-court statement being offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted. The Federal Rules of Evidence prohibit introducing hearsay statements during applicable federal court proceedings, unless one of nearly thirty exemptions or exceptions applies. The Federal Rules of Evidence define hearsay as:

A statement that: (1) the declarant does not make while testifying at the current trial or hearing; and (2) a party offers in evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted in the statement. (F.R.E. 801(c)).

The "declarant" is the person who makes the out-of-court statement. (F.R.E. 801(b)).

Hearsay evidence may be admitted under these exemptions, but only in support of direct evidence. Hearsay evidence alone is insufficient to convict a person and must be supported by direct evidence, in order to be introduced and considered.

At one point in the Impeachment hearing of President Trump, Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) even appeared to embrace hearsay testimony, claiming that "hearsay can be much better evidence than direct" and that "countless people have been convicted on hearsay because the courts have routinely allowed and created, needed exceptions to hearsay."

While it is true that hearsay evidence can be utilized to convict a person, it can only be utilized in support of direct evidence, when submitted under the exemption rule, and it is insufficient by itself to convict a person. Therefore, Rep. Mike Quigley's statement is misleading. This statement is an excellent example of my Chirp on “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors”.

11/13/19 Pearls of Wisdom

I have decided to create a collection of the "Pearls of Wisdom" that I have learned throughout my life. As such, I have withdrawn my previous Chirp on Pearls of Wisdom and I have incorporated this Chirp into this new collection.

I have very little wisdom of my own, but I have learned much wisdom from my readings, listening to’s, and viewings. As we pass through life, we often encounter pearls of wisdom. Whether it be from something we have read, heard, or watched we are often struck by this wisdom. We often make a vow to ourselves to remember and apply these pearls of wisdom, and we often many times forget or not apply these pearls of wisdom. But pearls of wisdom should not only be remembered but consciously incorporated into our lives in our words and deeds. I have made this collection to remind myself of these Pearls, and to provide whatever wisdom I can to my readers.

11/10/18 Real Climate Science

As many of you are aware, I am lukewarm (sic) and skeptical of Man-Made Climate change, as my “Climate Change” Science Article explains. One of the reasons for my skepticism is the use of statistics in Climate Change. One other such skeptic is Tony Heller. He is not a climate scientist. (Neither is Al Gore or Bill Nye, the Science Guy.) Heller is a Computer Scientist and Geologist who enjoys digging into data. He has a website, realclimatescience.com, which examines the use, and misuse, of statistics in Climate Change. This website is well worth reviewing, and his YouTube video My Gift to Climate Alarmists is well worth the watch. In this video, he demonstrates just how charts are manipulated by climate alarmists.

I have also updated my Science Article “Climate Change” to incorporate some of his points, as well as credit him for the excellent work he is doing.

11/09/19 To Be Right or Not to Be Wrong

To be, or not to be, that is the question” as William Shakespeare has written in Hamlet, or as Benjamin Franklin has written:

“Most men indeed as well as most sects in Religion, think themselves in possession of all truth, and that wherever others differ from them it is so far error. Steele a Protestant in a Dedication tells the Pope, that the only difference between our Churches in their opinions of the certainty of their doctrines is, the Church of Rome is infallible and the Church of England is never in the wrong.”

A friend of mine recently commented that I was trying too hard to be right. However, I realize that you can never be right as you can never have complete knowledge on any subject that would allow you to be right. I have always thought of myself as trying to never be in the wrong. Never in the wrong as I will not discuss or write on any issue that I believe that I do not have sufficient knowledge upon. When I do discuss or write on an issue, I try to never be in the wrong, but I realize that I may be wrong. I therefore remember the wisdom of Benjamin Franklin whenever I discuss or write anything:

“Doubt a little of your own infallibility.”

and

"of being obliged by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important subjects, which I once thought right, but found to be otherwise."

11/08/19 Is Artificial Intelligence Possible?

Artificial Intelligence implies that no human intervention is required to produce human-like intelligent capabilities from Artificial Intelligence. It is this broad definition of Artificial Intelligence that I wish to examine in my new Science Article "Is Artificial Intelligence Possible?". This article attempts to explore the boundaries of Artificial Intelligence and provide insights into the answers to the question of “Is Artificial Intelligence Possible?”. This will be done by providing several examples of the nuisances of the problems that highlight the issues of Artificial Intelligence.

11/06/19 You Can Do and Say Whatever you Want

My new Article “You Can Do and Say Whatever you Want” is about the propriety of what people do or say. Truth and facts should always be the basis of what you do or say. But truth and facts seem to play little part in today’s partisan political environment. This Article examines truth, facts, and propriety in what people do or say.

11/05/19 Dr. Thomas Sowell

Dr. Thomas Sowell (born June 30, 1930) is an American economist and social theorist who is currently a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

Dr. Thomas Sowell was born in North Carolina but grew up in Harlem, New York. He dropped out of Stuyvesant High School and served in the United States Marine Corps during the Korean War. He received a bachelor's degree, graduating magna cum laude from Harvard University in 1958 and a master's degree from Columbia University in 1959. In 1968, he earned his doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago.

Dr. Thomas Sowell has served on the faculties of several universities, including Cornell University and the University of California, Los Angeles. He has also worked for think tanks such as the Urban Institute. Since 1980, he has worked at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. He writes from a libertarian conservative perspective, and he has written more than thirty books (a number of which have been reprinted in revised editions), and his work has been widely anthologized. He is a National Humanities Medal recipient for innovative scholarship which incorporated history, economics and political science.

If you are looking for fact-based, intellectual reasoning, and wisdom, on Economics and Statistics and Governmental and Social policy based on them I would highly recommend the following books by Dr. Sowell:

Dr. Sowell’s writings have provided me unique insights into economics and statistics in the formation of governmental and social policies. He has shown how statistics can be interpreted and utilized, as well as misconstrued and misused by even the most well intended and intelligent persons (including economists and statisticians, as well as politicians).

11/03/19 The Deep State

I do not particularly care for the term “Deep State”, but it is a useful moniker. It conjures up images of an organized cabal within the government intent on nefarious goals. There is nothing in government operations that can be this organized and focused, especially across government agency lines that would suggest a cabal, let alone a secret ruling class that directs the goals of the cabal.

Instead, there is an attitude amongst many supervisors and bureaucrats within the Executive Branch that they serve the people directly by determining what is best for the people, and they use many subterfuges to accomplish what they perceive as best for the American people. They believe that the President, Cabinet Secretaries, Department Heads, and Officials are only there for a limited time, while the supervisors and bureaucrats are there for the duration of their careers. They, therefore, believe that they have the discretion to enforce or ignore Executive orders and directions from the President, Cabinet Secretaries, Department Heads, and Officials as they see fit for what is best for the American people. In reality, this is an assault on democracy, as they are not upholding the ideals of democracy but subverting democracy to achieve their goals.

All Executive branch supervisors and bureaucrats are there to serve the people as expressed through the election of a President of the United States to lawfully carry out presidential duties and responsibilities. All Executive Orders and directions from the President, Cabinet Secretaries, Department Heads, and Officials need to be obeyed and enforced until such time as they have been adjudicated by the courts as being unlawful, or Congress passes laws that contravene or modify these Executive Orders and directions. If these supervisors and bureaucrats have a problem with the Executive Orders and directions, they only have limited choices in how they carry out their duties and responsibilities.

The first choice is to faithfully carry out the Executive Orders and directions until such time as the courts determine them unlawful, or Congress passes laws that contravene or modify these Executive Orders and directions. The next choice is for them to resign their jobs as a matter of conscientious objection, then work within the political process to have these Executive Orders and directions changed or overturned. Finally, they can work to have these Executive Orders and directions changed within the governmental processes for change, while at the same time faithfully carrying out the Executive Orders and directions.

To do anything other than these three items is to thwart the democratic process of the election of a President. If these supervisors and bureaucrats choose to do otherwise, they need to be disciplined and perhaps removed from their jobs. But as they have Civil Service protections for their jobs there is little that can be done to discipline them under current Civil Service laws, rules, and regulations. These current Civil Service laws, rules, and regulations need to be modified so that officials and bureaucrats who engage in this conduct can be disciplined and perhaps removed from their jobs.

For supervisors and bureaucrats to do so otherwise is to have a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, convoluted into a government of the people, by supervisors and bureaucrats, and for the people. For “by the people” is “by” the elected President, members of Congress, and the appointed and Senate-confirmed Judges and Justices, Cabinet Secretaries, Department Heads, and Officials. All other Executive Branch government employees must faithfully follow the Executive Orders and directions of the President, Cabinet Secretaries, Department Heads, and Officials.

11/01/19 Do Poems and Lyrics Contain Truths?

Poems and lyrics are many times beautiful and emotional. They reveal the thoughts and feelings of the author/composer. But do they contain truths? They may, but not always, nor often. For the truth to be revealed you must apply facts and "Reasoning." And poems and lyrics are not composed of facts or reasoning. Poems and Lyrics are written to reveal a truth or persuade you of a truth, and they often encapsulate a truth, but they are insufficient to establish a truth. Poems and lyrics often contain what the author/composer believes to be a truth, but “believe” is not the same as “true”. To establish a truth, you must apply facts and reasoning. Therefore, let a poem and lyric be a guide to truth, but not be a definitive proof of truth.

11/01/19 Lessons Learned from Books, Television, Movies, and Plays

Most books, television, movies, and plays follow “The 90/10 Rule”, in that 90% are crap and 10% are worthwhile. And their worth is in what it teaches us about life. However, you must be careful that you learn the proper lessons from books, television, movies, and plays. It should be remembered that many books, television, movies, and plays are fiction, and as such, they need to be carefully analyzed before you incorporate a lesson learned into your life. Even non-fiction books, television, movies, and plays should be analyzed for their accuracy and veracity before you incorporate a lesson learned into your life.

While many people do understand the proper lessons, they rarely apply what they have learned from books, television, movies, and plays. The lessons learned are not remembered and applied in their personal life and social interactions, let alone to society as a whole. When a situation occurs that is apropos to the lessons learned from the books, television, movies, and plays they rarely think about what they have learned when they decide to do or say something. This is a shame, as it could help you make a better decision if you recalled the lesson learned.

I have often taken what I have learned from books, television, movies, and plays and applied it to my “Principles, Truisms, Locutions, and Rules” that guide my “Life” as I have written on this website. This is why you will see many quotes from books, television, movies, and plays in my Articles and Observations. But you must be careful to learn the right lessons from books, television, movies, and plays. For if you learn the wrong lesson you will apply the wrong decisions to your life.

10/31/19 Impeachment Resolution

In a companion piece to my “Impeachment” Article I examine the Resolution of the House of Representatives regarding the “impeachment” of President Trump. I would encourage all to read this Article “Impeachment Resolution” to understand the underlying societal impacts of this resolution.

10/29/19 Analogizing and Conflating

To conflate (the process of joining together, combining into one) or to analogize (make an analogy by drawing a comparison in order to show a similarity in some respect) are proper techniques of debate, if they are utilized properly. However, in today’s political debates they are often used improperly, as they are not conflated or analogized properly. My new Article “Analogizing and Conflating” examines this issue.

10/28/19 Lynching

Lynching has a very sad and sorry history in the United States. Most often lynching was done for racial purposes, but sometimes for other purposes. No matter why it is done it is wrong. Wrong not only because it deprives someone of their life, but wrong because it deprives all of us of “Justice and The Rule of Law in America”, as lynching is defined as putting a person to death by mob action without due process of law. It is also an excellent example of mob rule at its worse.

The use of the word “Lynching” also evokes a visceral emotional response for those groups (mostly Black Americans) that have been negatively impacted by lynching. Therefore, you should use the word “lynching” very carefully. But “lynching” is a perfectly good word to use if it is used appropriately.

Both sides of the political spectrum have utilized the word “lynching” to describe certain actions and words by the other side. In many cases this use of the word “lynching” was appropriate, but in some cases, it was not. When it is utilized inappropriately than it is right to condemn the person who utilized it inappropriately.

With all the brouhaha of President Trump calling the current “impeachment” process a “lynching,” it should be remembered that several Democratic leaders called the Impeachment of President Clinton a “lynching”. In both cases the word “lynching” was utilized to describe what each party thought was an injustice being perpetrated by the other party. However, during the impeachment and trial of President Clinton the rights of President Clinton, and the Democrats, were scrupulously protected, and as such the word “lynching” was inappropriate. In the current “impeachment” of President Trump the rights of President Trump and the Republicans have not been protected (see my Article on “Impeachable Offenses”). Therefore, it is entirely appropriate for President Trump to use the word “lynching” to describe his "impeachment" process.

It should also be remembered that the Democrats have utilized many visceral emotional words and terms about President Trump throughout his brief political career, and many times President Trump has responded in kind. Almost always the Democrats have condemned his words and terms while remaining silent on their own, or their supporters, words and terms. With this silence, the Democrats seem to be saying “We can utilize any word or term to describe President Trump, but President Trumps can only utilize words or terms that we approve of”.

This is most certainly not fair play, and indeed, is an attempt by the Democrats to try to silence or demonize President Trump. Given the bitter partisan divide over President Trump, I do not expect this to change. And I do not expect President Trump to stop, as this would disarm himself and make the visceral emotional words and terms one-sided. It would, however, be appropriate for the (fake) news media to point out this bi- partisan utilization of visceral emotional words and terms. Given my Observation on “Modern Journalism”, journalist disapproval of President Trump, and journalists' current lack of professionalism, I do not expect this to happen.

10/27/19 A Wise Person

Wisdom is the ability to apply your knowledge, your experience, your reasoning, and your common sense into your words, deeds, and behavior. And wisdom is also the ability to listen to others who are intelligent and wise and incorporate their intelligence and wisdom into your own. Not all intelligent persons are wise. An intelligent person knows what to say, a wise person knows whether or not, and how to say it. You should try to be a wise person.  My new Article "A Wise Person" examines wisdom in this context.

10/26/19 Article Improvements

While re-reading my articles on “Impeachment” and “The Rule of Law in Non-Judicial Proceedings” I became dissatisfied with the organization and structure of these articles. I also realized that I had left out several points that needed to be included. I, therefore, have rewritten these articles to correct these deficiencies. I would suggest to all that have read the original articles to re-read the updated articles, and for those who have not read these articles to take the time to read the updated articles.

10/25/19 True North: The Principles of Conservatism

The Heritage Foundation formulates policies that promote free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense. Heritage does not support policies that deviate from these principles, nor are our recommendations ever influenced by donations or outside political pressure. 

    1. The federal government exists to preserve life, liberty and property, and it is instituted to protect the rights of individuals according to natural law. Among these rights are the sanctity of life; the freedom of speech, religion, the press, and assembly; the right to bear arms; the right of individuals to be treated equally and justly under the law; and to enjoy the fruits of ones labor.
    2. The federal government’s powers are limited to those named in the Constitution and should be exercised solely to protect the rights of its citizens. As Thomas Jefferson said, “The government closest to the people serves the people best.” Powers not delegated to the federal government, nor prohibited by the Constitution, are reserved to the states or to the people.
    3. Judges should interpret and apply our laws and the Constitution based on their original meaning, not upon judges’ personal and political predispositions.
    4. Individuals and families—not government—make the best decisions regarding their and their children’s health, education, jobs, and welfare.
    5. The family is the essential foundation of civil society, and traditional marriage serves as the cornerstone of the family.
    6. The federal deficit and debt must not place unreasonable financial burdens on future generations.
    7. Tax policies should raise only the minimum revenue necessary to fund constitutionally appropriate functions of government.
    8. America’s economy and the prosperity of individual citizens are best served by a system of free enterprise, with special emphasis on economic freedom, private property rights, and the rule of law. This system is best sustained by policies promoting free trade and deregulation, and opposing government interventions in the economy that distort markets and impair innovation. 
    9. Regulations must not breach constitutional principles of limited government and the separation of powers.
    10. America must be a welcoming nation—one that promotes patriotic assimilation and is governed by laws that are fair, humane, and enforced to protect its citizens.
    11. Justice requires an efficient, fair, and effective criminal justice system—one that gives defendants adequate due process and requires an appropriate degree of criminal intent to merit punishment.
    12. International agreements and international organizations should not infringe on American’s constitutional rights, nor should they diminish American sovereignty.
    13. America is strongest when our policies protect our national interests, preserve our alliances of free peoples, vigorously counter threats to our security, and advance prosperity through economic freedom at home and abroad.
    14. The best way to ensure peace is through a strong national defense.

To which I say - Amen.

10/24/19 To Serve or to Rule?

Many times, a politician or bureaucrat has stated that they are serving their constituents or the public. But the many laws, regulations, rules, and procedures they pass or implement seem more to rule the public rather than serve the public. The question is then “Are the serving the public or are they ruling the public?”. If they do this without preserving our Freedom From - Liberty To, then the answer must be they are more interested in ruling the public rather than serving the public. To preserve our Freedoms and Liberties, which are our Human Rights, we must maintain a “A Just Government and a Just Society”, or we shall be ruled rather than served by politicians or bureaucrats.

10/23/19 To Serve Mankind

In a famous Twilight Zone episode “To Serve Mankind” an alien race visits Earth and brings peace, health, and prosperity to mankind, all the while carrying a book titled “To Serve Mankind” which they do not share with mankind. A linguist purloins the book, translates it, and discovers that “It’s a cookbook”.

Many times, we have heard a politician or bureaucrat described as a Public Servant, or Serving the Public, or Dedicated to Public Service. Usually they are doing this while earning a good salary, with good employment benefits and a beneficial pension plan.The question is then are they serving the public for the public benefit, or are they following a cookbook for their own benefit?

10/22/19 R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

I have written a new article “R.E.S.P.E.C.T.”.  It is natural to respect someone who behaves in a Legal, Moral and Ethical manner. But what of respect for those who falter or for politicians? This article examines this issue.

10/20/19 Elizabeth Warren is as much as a Capitalist as she is a Native American

Presidential candidate Senator Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., wants to break apart the economy and put it back together in her own way, host of "Making Money" Charles Payne has said. Here are just some of Warren’s many frightening socialist plans for the United States as Justin Haskins has written:

"These proposals – and the incredibly high tax increases needed to fund them – would push the U.S. closer than ever to full-blown Marxism, and they are without any doubt in line with socialist principles. This is why self-described socialists like Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez have embraced or even proposed the vast majority of them.

With Halloween just around the corner, millions of children will be dressing up for one night pretending to be all sorts of characters. Warren has stopped pretending to be a Native American, but pretends every day to be a capitalist – while she knows very well that she’s a socialist through and through.”

For the sake of our country and the American people, let’s hope voters see through Warren’s masquerade. Even if you confiscated 90% of the net wealth of the people who are worth more than 1 million dollars there would only be enough money to pay for about one year of what she proposes. After one year there would no longer be any wealth to confiscate and the tax burden to pay for these programs would fall (heavily) on the middle class."

Don’t be fooled by what a political candidate says, no matter how attractive it may appear to be. You need to discover the details of their plan, and how it is to be implemented, to determine the full impacts of the plan. And remember that a plan without the costs and the means to pay for the costs is not a plan, it is a wish list.

10/19/19 Justice and The Rule of Law in America

I have updated my Article on “The Rule of Law” and retitled it to “Justice and The Rule of Law in America” (Oct 2019). This is a longer than usual Article on my thoughts on this subject. However, it has five parts that are shorter and can be read independently from each other. These are my thoughts on this subject:

10/16/19 A World of Words versus the World as It Is

In today’s world we seem much more concerned about what someone says but pay far too little attention to what one does. But words a malleable and can mean different things to different people, and different things at different places and at different times. The consequences for words are also variable ranging from invoking feelings, both good and bad, to incitement for political actions and perhaps to physical violence.  These, in turn, can cause behavior that is not in the best interests of a person or a society. Actions, however, are much more precise and have direct and indirect consequences. It is much more important what someone does, and the consequences of their deeds, than what they may say.

Words are often combined with statistics to achieve a political or social goal. But statistics and the words associated with them are often used incorrectly as outlined in my Observation “Oh What a Tangled Web We Weave” and “Political Polling”. And when statistics and the words used to describe them are utilized improperly, they can lead to terrible consequences. Therefore, we must make sure that the statistics, and the words used to describe them, are utilized properly. Unfortunately, this is not often the case in today’s heated political climate.

My new Article "A World of Words versus the World as It Is" is an examination of the (mis)use of statistics, and the words used to describe statistics, in today's political environment.

10/14/19 Doing Nothing Illegal

How often have you heard the phrase that someone has “Done Nothing Illegal”? I applaud those who have done nothing illegal. But life is more than legal versus illegal. One can live a perfectly legal life and at the same time one can live an immoral and unethical life. This is because the law can only deal with actions that cause direct harm to someone or society. There are many instances, however, where legal activities are clearly unethical or immoral. And the law cannot deal with unethical or immoral actions as they often do not cause direct harm, and they are notoriously difficult to define and codify.

The question is then how we are to judge immoral or unethical actions. After all, who are you to judge the actions of others. The answers to these questions in another Article of mine “Who are you to judge?”. Using the standards in this article It is perfectly fine to judge the actions of others.

A good example of this is the actions of Joe and Hunter Biden in Ukraine and China. While these actions may or may not be illegal, they are clearly unethical. Hunter Biden brought no knowledge, experience, or capabilities to the Ukrainian and Chinese businesses that hired him. All he brought was his familial relationship with his father, a powerful and influential political personage. As such, he did not earn what he obtained, but simply latched on his connection to his father. It is clearly unethical for Hunter Biden to profit simply through a political connection, as it was unethical for Joe Biden to allow his son to profit from his political influence. It is for this unethical activity that Joe and Hunter Biden should be judged by the American people. As to its legality or illegality it is the responsibility of the Justice Department to determine what should or should not be done under the law.

10/13/19 Math is More than Numbers

On the surface, math (and statistics) may seem like it's all about numbers and formulas. However, this versatile subject is about much more than just counting, adding, and subtracting. Discover why math is more than numbers and find out how it contributes to the development of valuable skills in problem solving, critical thinking, language, and more. My new Article  "Math (and statistical mathematics) is More than Numbers" explores this subject.

Mathematics (and statistical mathematics) cannot solve every problem. Some problems have so many constants and variables as to be unsolvable. And as one of Murphy’s Laws state; Variables won't, constants aren't. There is also the problem of what we know, what we don’t know, and what we don’t know that we don’t know as discussed in my Article “A Perspective on Statistics and Public Polling”. Therefore, keep in mind when someone (even an expert) utilizes mathematics or statistics they are more probably wrong than they are probably right, especially in the use of math or statistics in regard to social policy (for more about utilizing statistics within social policy I would recommend the book “Discrimination and Disparities” by Thomas Sowell).

10/09/19 Is There Intelligent Life Out There? 

I have extracted a section from a previous Science Article and created a new Science Article on the subject "Intelligent Life in the Universe". I would encourage you to read this article as this issue is not as simple as it appears at first glance.

10/06/19 Elder Humor

Having recently joined the ranks of senior citizenship and the retired I have posted some of my favorite "Elder Humor". Read and weep, but remember that getting older can be hell but the alternative is worse.

10/04/19 Impeachment

I have posted a new Article on "Impeachment" which is my thoughts on Impeachment, and how it relates to President Clinton and President Trump.

10/03/19 A touch of Computer Humor

I have just posted some new humor "Computer One Liners" and "Computer Humor". As a retired computer consultant I can attest to the drollness and veracity of this humor.

09/25/19 The Biggest Falsehoods in American

I have posted a new Article on “The Biggest Falsehoods in American” which examines the issues that I believe are misrepresented, misreported, and misunderstood in America. In alphabetical order they are:

To solve these problems requires that we understand the true nature of these problems. Unfortunately, because of the misinformation on these problems this is not possible. Politicians and activist are more interested in scoring political points, along with other motivations, that interfere with our understanding. Let us all begin to understand the true nature of these problems so that we can work together on solving these problems.

09/23/19 Indoctrination versus Education

I have posted a new Article "Indoctrination versus Education" which is an examination of one of the biggest failures in our educational system. The failure to educate our youth to become knowledgeable, intelligent, and reasonable on social, economic, or political issues. Issues such as Climate Change, Gun Control, Racism, Social Justice, etc. in which they are Indoctrinated not Educated. Read and weep for this failure.

For more of my thoughts on Education I would direct you to my Article "Public Education".

09/21/19 Witty Quotes About Science and Math Topics

I have just posted some new humor on "Witty Quotes About Science and Math Topics". Check them out and tickle your funny bode.

09/19/19 Humor

The importance of humor cannot be understated. For humor provides the ability to laugh at yourself and with others. An ability that is cathartic for yourself and society. When we laugh together, we can discuss the issues and concerns of society in a more harmonious manner. Therefore, I have created a new section "Humor" on my website to tickle your funny bone.

09/19/19 A Just Government and a Just Society

A Just Government and a Just Society is a new Article I have posted. The question of the role of government and society, and what constitutes a just government and society, has bedeviled mankind for millennia. This article examines what constitutes a Just Government and a Just Society.

09/18/19 Democrat Party Scheming

In my Chirp “The Creed of Progressives and Leftists” I postulated the motives of Progressives and Leftists – “The Creed of Progressives and Leftists is that as they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior they are, of course, always correct. To oppose them not only makes you wrong, but it also means that you are evil. “. As the Democratic Party has become a party of Progressives and Leftists, they have adopted this creed. This adoption is readily apparent, to any objective observer, of the current Democratic presidential candidates’ positions and policies. My other Chirp “That’s Not an Ideology, That’s a Theology” points out that their political ideology has morphed into a theology.

As such, I believe that the Democratic Party has adopted the following scheme to achieve its goals:

    1. Obtain and Retain Power through all means possible.
    2. Use the Power for the purposes of Governmental Control of America.
    3. Suppress All Opposition to Their Power.

And they are willing to accomplish their goals via unconstitutional means and without respect to the “The Rule of Law” for governmental actions and “The Rule of Law in Non-Judicial Proceedings” for societal actions. They also do not respect Human Rights as I have stated in my article “The Underlying Meaning of the Bill of Rights”.

Therefore, those of us who believe in Human Rights and the Constitution must oppose the words and deeds of the current Democrat Party and its presidential candidates if we are to remain a country of “Freedom and Liberty” and “Justice for All”.

09/17/19 Intelligentsia

I do not expect the Intelligentsia to be very intelligent, except perhaps, in their own area of expertise. For when they venture outside their expertise they are often as ignorant as most of us. Therefore, be very cautious when an intelligent person expresses their opinion on a subject on which they have no expertise. And remember, even within their expertise they can often be ignorant of all of the facts leading to a conclusion, as well as their “Reasoning” being faulty. After all, they could just as well be wrong.

09/14/19 Glass Houses and Consensus in Science

The Proverb “People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones” should always be remembered during any debate or discussion, especially in Science discussions.And scientific consensus can lead you astray, as it has been wrong in the past and will continue to be wrong as new knowledge is obtained. My Science article "Glass Houses and Consensus in Science" examines this issue utilizing the question of "Intelligent Life in Our Universe".

09/10/19 Benjamin Franklin

A few years back my best friend (now deceased) and manager of the cigar lounge that I frequented sat next to me in the empty (except for myself) lounge and inquired that as I knew much about Benjamin Franklin would I tell him something about Franklin. I spent the next thirty to forty minutes telling him Benjamin Franklin stories. At the end of my stories, I inquired “So, what did you learn about Benjamin Franklin?”. He replied, “I learned never to ask you again about Benjamin Franklin!”. In his memory I have created a History article "The Life and Contributions of Benjamin Franklin".  You may have not asked for it, but here it is anyway.

09/07/19 Form Over Substance

In today’s political “debates”, especially on television, there is a tendency to elevate form over substance, in that the content of the debate is often overshadowed by the style of the debater. The gotcha moments, the zingers, and the pithy statements are added up, and the person who had the most of these items is often seen as the winner of the debate. This is often due to the time constraints of the debate, as most debate is done within limited time segments. First-class thoughts require more time to explain than is available in these segments. As a result, these debates shed more heat than light on the topic (as in my Observation “Light vs Heat”), and these debates fail to enlighten the topic being debated.

A good debater requires facts and figures to be available at a moment’s notice to counter their opponent. A good thinker, however, often relies on thorough facts and figures without logical fallacies and cognitive biases which are more difficult to recollect and/or explain. This puts the good thinker at a disadvantage to a good debater. Often the facts and figures of both sides need to be challenged, as they may be incorrect or incomplete, and possibly contain logical fallacies and cognitive biases (as explained in my Observation “Reasoning”). As there is usually insufficient time to challenge these facts and figures the viewer may be misled to a wrong conclusion due to a lack of challenge time.

A great debater is both a first-class thinker and a first-class debater, but these individuals are few and far between. A good thinker may not be a good debater, and a good debater my not be a good thinker. In this situation, the debater is often seen as the “winner’ of the debate even though their argument may be defective or without merit. Meanwhile, the good thinkers’ argument is largely ignored as there is insufficient time to be effectual.

I am, myself, afflicted with this problem as I believe I have good thoughts, but I also believe that I am a poor debater. It is for this reason that I often do not engage in debates. I do, however, engage in discussions in which both sides have ample time to challenge facts and figures and effectually explain their arguments. The other thing I intensely dislike about today’s political “debates” is the interruption and/or shouting down of an opponent to cut off the debate, as well as the utilization, by many, of the tactic of “Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage“ and “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors”. For these reasons, I am loath to engage in debates but willing to engage in discussions.

Please note – For a more thorough examination of today’s political discourse I would direct you to my Observation “Political Discourse”.

09/06/19 That’s Not an Ideology, That’s a Theology

In my Chirp “The Creed of Progressives and Leftists”, as rephrased below, I have stated what I believe is the views that most Progressives and Leftist have concerning the people who do not agree with them:

The Creed of Progressives and Leftists is that as they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior they are, of course, always correct. To oppose them not only makes you wrong, but it also means that you are an untoward person. And as they are always morally decent those who oppose them must be morally indecent. And being untoward and indecent (and perhaps evil) the opponents of Progressives and Leftists need to be silenced, driven from the public square and public forums, their livelihoods or careers threatened through doxing, economic boycotts, or blacklists, and they are not to be allowed to hold any positions of social, economic, or governmental power. They also believe that the private and family lives of their opponents may be intimidated or menaced by physical violence, if not actual violence. Progressives and Leftists believe that to “Demonize, Denigrate, or Disparage” their opponents are the primary and acceptable means to accomplish this, along with other tactics that I have outlined In my Article on the “Divisiveness in America”.

When you are self-righteous and believe that you have the only correct opinions, and others must be subservient to your ideology, you no longer have an ideology but a theology. A Theology of:

A theology that cannot be criticized nor disputed, nor acknowledge contravening information or facts. Even within their own ranks you must conform to their theology or be ostracized. They also believe that the “Natural (Bill of) Rights” of their opponents may be violated to achieve their goals.

By their words and actions their theology does not allow for the acceptance of other viewpoints, and indeed the suppression of other viewpoints, which allows for the violation of the Human Rights of all people. For this reason alone, their theology must be rejected.

09/02/19 A New American Revolution

In several of my Chirps and Articles, I have mentioned that I fear we may be headed into a new American revolution. A new revolution because of the violation of the “Natural (Bill of) Rights” and the “Divisiveness in America”, as well as the issues discussed in many of my Chips. My main fear is that we are beginning to seriously violate the Constitution, and more specifically the Bill of Rights, in today's modern society. For more of my thoughts on these violations I would direct you to my Observation “A New Declaration of Independence”. I have also proposed  “A New U.S. Constitution” that I believe addresses and corrects these issues.

09/01/19 A Red Flag Abuse

A former Marine, Shane Kohfield, 32, who said at a protest that he would “slaughter” Antifa members in self-defense if attacked, recently had his five weapons confiscated by the FBI. The temporary seizure came through the use of Oregon’s “Red Flag” law, which allows law enforcement agencies and family members to seek a court order to have weapons taken away from an individual viewed as potentially violent. The former Marine was not charged with any crime but surrendered five guns. He was quoted as saying:

“If Antifa gets to the point where they start killing us, I’m going to kill them next," Kohfield told a crowd, according to The Oregonian. “I’d slaughter them, and I have a detailed plan on how I would wipe out Antifa.”

This is a perfect example of why the “Red Flag” laws are Unconstitutional. Unconstitutional in it violates both the 1st and 2nd Amendments to the Constitution. In effect, he said that if someone is going to kill him then he will kill them first, and he has every right to say this and to do this. He has the free speech right (1st Amendment) to declare his intentions in the event of his life being threatened, and the right to protect himself from a violent attack by keeping and bearing arms (2nd Amendment). His comment was not a threat, as he prefaced his right to protect himself by limiting it to only those cases where his own life was threatened. His phraseology was inarticulate, but his sentiment was appropriate. And for this he was deprived of his 1st and 2nd Amendment rights as explained in my Article “Red Flag, Yellow Flag, and No Flag “

This is analogous to what the British were doing before and during the Revolutionary War. American colonists were declaring their intention to protect themselves, by armed conflict if necessary, against British threats against them. When the British attempted to seize their weapons, they utilized armed resistance to protect themselves. The battles of Lexington and Concord ensued, and the American Revolution began. I fear that if authorities began to size weapons under Red Flag laws then we may see the start of another revolution in America.

09/01/19 War is Hell!

Death, injuries, destruction, and infectious diseases are what war is. At that’s why it should be avoided. But not avoided at all costs. For sometimes the cost of war needs to be burdened to assure the peace is worthwhile. For peace is not the absence of war, but as the celebrated philosopher Baruch Spinoza has said:

"Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice." - Baruch Spinoza

To avoid war without establishing a Spinozian peace is to inflict yourself with injustice and undue future burdens. Do not go lightly into war as there will be a tremendous cost in life, injuries, property, diseases, and treasury. But to not fight a war to establish or preserve a Spinozian peace will be more costly.

But if you need to go to war remember that in fighting a war the quotes of the great Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman:

If you need to go to war you need to fight to win and win as quickly as possible. For any other way of fighting prolongs a war resulting in more death, injuries, destruction, and infectious diseases.

08/31/19 The Purpose of the Courts

At a recent cigar lounge discussion, someone mentioned that the purpose of the courts was to protect the poor. Not wishing to disrupt the peace I did not challenge this statement. However, I have no problem disrupting the peace in my Chirps. The best explanation of the purpose of the courts comes from the Bible:

“You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor.”
- Leviticus 19:15 ESV

The courts are to insure Justice as I have written in another Chirp “Justice For All”. To put in another, more practical, context the purpose of the Courts is to ensure a civil society by the application of the “Rule of Law”.

Anytime you put an adjective before the word “Justice” within the Judicial system (i.e. Social, Environmental, Distributive, Occupational, Organizational, etc.) it is a perversion of justice. Within the Judicial system, there must be “Equal Justice for All” (i.e. “Equality Under the Law “and” Equal Protection of the Laws”) or there can be no justice, and Justice must always be blind to all but the merits of the case and the application of the law. Treating people or persons unequally within the Judicial system means favoritism or un-favoritism for some, not based on the merits of their case or the law. Unequal treatment within the Judicial system was one of the major reasons that the Colonist declared independence from Britain, and we became the United States. I fear that if we start seeing Adjective Justice within the Judicial system, we are sowing the seeds of a future revolution. We must assure “Equal Justice for All” and a that “Justice is Blind” to maintain the integrity of our Judicial system.

08/30/19 Practicing What You Preach

I have written a new article “Practicing What You Preach” that examines the hypocrisy of those that are claiming “No One is Above the Law”. I hope that you would take some of your valuable time to read this article, as it exposes the dangers to the Rule of Law when “No One is Above the Law” is unequally applied.

08/30/19 Animal Cruelty

I am an animal lover, specifically a lover of dogs and cats. I have owned a few dogs and cats in my life, and I have treated all of them as family members. I cared for and protected them to the best of my abilities. I have grieved and continue to feel sorrow for the loss of them after they have died, and I still miss them. I know that the love of dogs and cats and other animals makes you a better and more responsible person. So, when I see cruelty to dogs and cats and to other animals, I am highly offended and pained. And this cruelty is not only by individuals but by some breeders of dogs and cats and other animals. For this is not only abuse to animals but a denigration of the human spirit of those who are cruel to animals. If you are capable of abusing animals, you are only one step away from abusing people.

You may also be a danger to yourself or others. I believe cruelty to animals is a symptom of mental problems. The State and Local governments need to strengthen their Animal Cruelty laws and then enforce them. The Federal government needs to regulate interstate commerce of animals to assure that no animal cruelty is practiced. Those that practice animal cruelty needs to have a psychological and perhaps a psychiatric examination to determine if they have a mental problem. All who practice animal cruelty need counseling to overcome this infliction and heal their human spirit.

Cruelty to animals bespeaks of inhumanity to people and needs to end.

08/29/19 World Hunger and Charity

“My Heart Aches, but My Head Rules.” Is the best description of my reaction to world hunger. All but the most inhumane of us are upset by world hunger. “My Heart Aches” for those that are hungry and starving in the world. However, “My Head Rules” in what I believe needs to be done to alleviate world hunger. My head tells me that the main cause of world hunger is corrupt governments. Corrupt governments that do not represent the will of the people, corrupt governments that do not enforce the Rule of Law, and corrupt governments that do not support a free economy and capitalism. For if you have a Democratic Government, the Rule of Law, and Capitalism, you rarely have hunger. For if you have these things then the incentive is to provide your people with the necessities of life; food, water, clothing, and shelter, and the ability to achieve these goals.

You would also have the charity of the people of the country that could afford to help their fellow citizens in need. For charity begins at home, and by your neighbors, and your fellow citizens. A charity that comes from outside these sources rarely meets the needs of the hungry people. And such charities can also perpetuate hunger. Perpetuate hunger in that it allows a corrupt government to remain corrupt and ignore the needs of their people. Therefore, when I see charitable appeals to help alleviate hunger in the world these charities often supply food to the hungry. But, by doing this, they also allow corrupt governments to continue to ignore the needs of their people. And then, hunger persists for their people. I, therefore, cannot support these charities, as my head tells me that in doing so I am de facto allowing hunger to persist. I wish there was a charity that would work to replace corrupt governments with a government that is democratic and responsive to the needs of their people, enforces the Rule of Law, and supports Capitalism. Such a charity would be well worth the contributions and they would also do the most to help alleviate world hunger.

08/28/19 Divisiveness in America

I have removed my Chip on “Divisiveness in America” and have converted and expanded it to an Article. This Article, available here, examines the causes and culprits for this divisiveness. And while there is much divisiveness it is not for the reasons that most pundits claim as I have explained in this Article.

08/27/19 Is It Time to Purchase Greenland?

A tempest in a teapot was brewed when President Trump’s private comment on “should we purchase Greenland” was made public. The national pride of Denmark and Greenland was ruffled by this comment, as should be expected. This is why this private comment should have remained private. However, the substance of this idea should be examined. I have posted and Article “Is It Time to Purchase Greenland?” which examines the costs and benefits for all parties if the United States were to purchase Greenland.

08/26/19 SETI and Vulcan

Are we alone in the universe? Are there advanced civilizations that we can detect? How can we better the odds of making contact? These questions are both fundamental and universal, and examined in my new Science Article "SETI and Vulcan".

08/25/19 Illumination, Not Titillation

Yesterday, I spent a pleasant few hours enjoying a cigar with my friends in a local cigar store and lounge. At this cigar store and lounge, they had the television tuned to the History channel playing back-to-back episodes of the “Ancient Aliens” series. As much as I tried to ignore these episodes, I did occasionally pay some attention to them. Being scientifically oriented I was astonished and exasperated as to the number of scientific inaccuracies and sometimes falsehoods, incorrect reasoning, logical fallacies, and cognitive biases (as examined in my Observation on "Reasoning") of what the people being interviewed had to say. If I, or another scientific person, had a debate with them on this subject they would have ended up looking foolish to an impartial observer. Unfortunately, The History channel, and other scientific channels, often have such programming on other topics such as Intelligent Life, UFOs, Pseudoscience, and History mysteries. I am sure that these programs have enough of an audience to generate good ratings, and therefore revenues, for these channels as many people are interested in these subjects. They do not, however, accurately illuminate these subjects to provide the viewer with well-informed knowledge. I would suggest that you review my Article on “Intelligent Life, UFOs, and Pseudoscience”  for some scientific examinations of these subject. The “Knowledge, Experience, and Wisdom, and Knowing vs. Understanding, as well as the Reasoning” sections of my Observation in “Life” provides some information that can be utilized to critique this type of television programming.

08/24/19 The Bill of Rights

I have written two articles on the Bill of Rights in the Constitution. The History article “The Underlying Meaning of the Bill of Rights” delves into the reason for and the underlying meaning of the Bill of Rights in the Constitution. While the Miscellaneous article “Natural (Bill of) Rights” elaborates on the History article with my thoughts on the Bill of Rights in the 21st century. If you read the Miscellaneous article (“Natural (Bill of) Rights”) you need not read the History article.

08/22/19 Wall Street versus Main Street

“The business of American is Business” is often used to describe America. And while this is generally true it should not be utilized to define government policy. Often Wall Street acts if the purpose of the Government is to keep the markets growing and the profits flowing. Sometimes what is best for Wall Street is not what is best for Main Street America. Foreign Policy and Foreign Trade is where this dichotomy often occurs. Foreign Policy must be conducted for the best interests of all the American people, not just for the best interests of American business. The safety and security of the American people must take precedence over the growth of the American economy, and sometimes this sends negative tremors throughout the American economy. But these negative tremors must be endured in the short term to assure that in the long term the American people benefit both economically and non-economically. For more on Foreign Policy, I would direct you to my Observation “International Issues”. And while generally, Foreign Trade is good for both the American people and American business this is not always the case. For Foreign trade to be advantageous and equitable for all parties, both Foreign and Domestic, it must be equitable and conducted on a level playing field. For more on the subject of foreign trade, I would direct you to my Article “Tariffs - A Double Entry Ledger”.

08/22/19 Gun Control and Red Flag, Yellow Flag, and No Flag

In my observation “Gun Control” and my article “Red Flag, Yellow Flag, and No Flag “ I have noted many issues and concerns regarding Gun Control. In this observation and article and I briefly touched on a national registry of all firearms, and perhaps ammunition, in the United States. I also examine the issue that many gun control advocates are proposing “Red Flag” laws that would prohibit the sale or possession of firearms to persons who have shown a propensity for violence or mental illness that they could be a danger to themselves or others. While these may sound like a practical solution, in practice they are very troubling as stated in this observation and article.

08/21/19 Polling

In my observation “Political Polling” I note that political polling has become ubiquitous and nefarious in today’s society. Polling has also become notoriously inaccurate as well, for a variety of reasons as I have outlined in my observation.

The best example of this is the 2016 Presidential election. Prior to the election political pollsters and pundits informed us that there was no way the Donald Trump could win the election. In one case a pollster informed us that Hillary Clinton had a 98 percent chance of winning the general election. Most (if not all) pollsters said that there was no chance that Donald Trump could win the necessary 270 electoral votes needed to win the election. But an election is the only accurate poll worth considering. Despite these pollsters and pundits, Donald Trump is the 45th President of the United States (by a wide margin in the electoral votes). And despite these inaccurate polls the pollsters are continuing to report on the opinions of the American people regarding Donald Trump’s popularity and policy positions. Until pollsters can correct their mistakes, which is improbable as Donald Trump’s supporters tend to not participate in polls, as well as the changing means of communication in 21st century America make polling more doubtful, you should be highly dubious of what pollsters and pundits are saying about the 2020 elections.

Let us not forget that these same pollsters, who were so wrong about Donald Trump in 2016, are still polling and projecting for the 2020 election. Therefore, whenever political polling is being utilized you should “Beware the Poll Results”, and “Beware the Poll Utilizers”.

08/16/19 Anti-Semitism in the USA

Anti-Semitism, Anti-Christianism, and Anti-Islamism

I have one word for Anti-Semitism, Anti-Christianism, and Anti-Islamism - Despicable!!! Anyone who participates in Anti-Semitism Anti-Christianism and Anti-Islamism deserves neither our attention nor respect. Both overt and covert Anti-Semitism, Anti-Christianism, and Anti-Islamism are to be rejected by all decent, moral and responsible persons. Unfortunately, in today's society, we have seen an increase in Anti-Semitism, Anti-Christianism and Anti-Islamism activities as part of an Anti-Religious inclination of many people. All decent, moral, and respectful people should do whatever is in their power to oppose Anti-Semitism Anti-Christianism, and Anti-Islamism, whether it be overt or covert. It is evil and should be removed from your hearts and minds. All evil should be removed from your hearts and minds, but Anti-Semitism, Anti-Christianism, and Anti-Islamism are especially important to be removed. As Martin Luther King Jr. said:

"I hope for a future in which all people are judged by the content of their character and not the color of their skin."

All people deserve to be judged by the content of their character and by no other factors. No religion, creed, race, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, veteran status, disability, military service, political affiliation, or the character of their family members should be utilized in judging an individual. It should also be remembered that the sins of the father are not vested upon the son, and no one should be the judge but upon their own actions and words. Let us strive for a future when all individuals are judged upon their own merits and character. To do so would result in a more peaceful and just society.

Anti-Semitism in the USA

Unfortunately, while Anti-Christianism and Anti-Islamism are increasing in America Anti-Semitism is on a big uprise in America. And this Anti-Semitism takes many insidious and devious forms. While some of this Anti-Semitism is direct acts or verbal or written statements (although stated/written somewhat obliquely) it is not difficult to recognize the Anti-Semitism of the perpetrator. Other verbal or written statements that are Anti-Semitic are not so easily recognized. They are often couched in term of caring for people, or human rights, or foreign policy goals. While they often sound noble their bedrock is Anti-Semitism. Today, it is couched in terms of changing the internal and foreign policies of Israel. Whether it be Israeli settlement policies, foreign aid, territorial borders, or the rise of the Anti-Israel BDS (Boycott, Divest and Sanctions) movement, it is Anti-Semitism. For there is no difference between hatred of Israel and hatred for Jews.

The fact is that this Anti-Semitism is a growing problem on the left. Whether it be worldwide or in American, modern Anti-Semitism it is mainly a leftist problem. There are, of course, Anti-Semitic sentiments on the far right but these are outliers on the right and are given no heed by the mainstream right (see my Chirp "Both Sides Do It"). However, the Anti-Semitism on the left is becoming more mainstream. Whether it be politicians, commentators, activists, and even journalists it is more acceptable to express Anti-Semitic sentiments. Those that practice Anti-Semitism must be rebuked and should not have a position of power or authority in society so that they cannot sow their Anti-Semitism.

Anti-Semitism must be confronted and condemned whenever it rears its ugly head.
For history has shown that whenever it is not it festers and grows to become a cancer that will eventually destroy a society.

08/14/19 The Intellectual Yet Idiot and Skin In The Game 

From the opening of this fine article by Nassim Nicholas Taleb on The Intellectual Yet Idiot (IYI) :

 “IYI is a production of modernity hence has been accelerating since the mid-twentieth century, to reach its local supremum today, along with the broad category of people without skin-in-the-game who have been invading many walks of life. Why? Simply, in many countries, the government’s role is ten times what it was a century ago (expressed in percentage of GDP). The IYI seems ubiquitous in our lives but is still a small minority and rarely seen outside specialized outlets, social media, and universities — most people have proper jobs and there are not many opening for the IYI. Beware the semi-erudite who thinks he is erudite.

The IYI pathologizes others for doing things he doesn’t understand without ever realizing it is his understanding that may be limited. He thinks people should act according to their best interests and he knows their interests, particularly if they are “red necks” or English non-crisp-vowel class who voted for Brexit. When Plebeians do something that makes sense to them, but not to him, the IYI uses the term “uneducated”. What we generally call participation in the political process, he calls by two distinct designations: “democracy” when it fits the IYI, and “populism” when the plebeians dare voting in a way that contradicts his preferences. While rich people believe in one tax dollar one vote, more humanistic ones in one man one vote, Monsanto in one lobbyist one vote, the IYI believes in one Ivy League degree one-vote, with some equivalence for foreign elite schools, and PhDs as these are needed in the club.”

The Intellectual Yet Idiot (IYI) is the best explanation I have heard that explains the current crop of Academics and Journalist in the last 50 years. These people often intensely study things, but rarely do they do anything. The IYI academic pedigree is often a K-12 education, followed by undergraduate college, followed by post-graduate studies, followed by a teaching or research position, thus never having to earn a salary by working in the real world. The journalist path is K-12 education, followed by a Journalist college degree, with perhaps some postgraduate studies, then a reporter’s position and perhaps eventually a commentator position. The journalist talks to people (mostly the IYI, but sometimes a business leader), but they never actually do anything in the real world but interview, research, and write. The IYI academics are full of theories and opinions based on these studies, but rarely do they attempt to implement their theories or opinions in the real world, and when they do it is often without any Skin In The Game (SIG). They utilize other people’s monies and efforts to achieve their goals, and if it fails, they can walk away without any consequences to themselves. Even after a failure, they continue to espouse their views, often making excuses for why it didn’t work in the real world. They continued to be called upon by other academics and journalist to espouse their opinions, even though they have no track record of effort or success. The journalist may think they know something about which they have interviewed, researched and written about, but the real world rarely conforms to their opinions, as the real world is often more complex and nuanced then they have studied or researched. Beware the IYI, as they are often wrong and will lead you astray.

08/13/19 Facts, Truth, and Reality

“We choose truth over facts”
– Joe Biden on the 2020 Presidential campaign trail

You cannot have truth without facts, and truth helps you to determine reality. The simple definition of these words, as follows, manifest this.

Facts are the bedrock of truth and reality. Your facts must be correct before you can seek truth and determine reality. And facts are not malleable as one of our founding fathers stated:

"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." 
- from John Adams, 'Argument in Defense of the Soldiers in the Boston Massacre Trials,' December 1770

Without facts, there can be no truth. To believe that something is true, without facts, is to believe that anything is possible or has happened.  This leads to disassociation from reality. And people who are disassociated from reality are characterized as mentally ill.

Facts should be utilized with intellectual reasoning to determine the truth, which allows you to perceive, recognize, or understand reality. To do otherwise would abrogate the truth and lead you to disassociate from reality. To allow emotions into your facts and reasoning will also lead to falsehoods as explained in my Observation  “With Facts, Intelligence, and Reasoning”. Remember:

“Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.”
- Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1927-2003), United States Senator from New York from 1976 to 2000

When someone claims to have “My Truth” or “Your Truth” they are not discussing reality, but their own mindful illusions. This also leads to “true for you but not for me”. If everybody has a different truth than there is no commonality which is required for intellectual discourse. Without this commonality, it is impossible for any social, economic, or scientific progress to occur. It also leads to political chaos as it would not be possible to determine the laws, rule, and regulations necessary to organize society.

We, therefore, need to reject those who espouse “Truth Over Facts”, “My Truth”, or “Your Truth” as inane and dangerous to society, and to pay no heed to those that utter these statements nor to their illusions.

08/12/19 My Trigger Warnings (updated)

There are many phrases and pet peeves that I have concerning political discourse that I have commented upon in my Observations on  “Phrases” and “Pet Peeves”. However, some are so egregious that when I hear them, I typically stop the conversation to correct their usage. The following is a list that triggers my ire:

08/05/19 Some Scientific Concerns

Modern science has some significant issues and concern as well as troubles, that it needs to address. In my article “On the Nature of Scientific Inquiry “an outline of the nature of scientific inquiry that does not delve into the details of science and utilizes no mathematics, but instead presents the basic concepts of scientific inquiry, I discuss these significant issues and concern as well as the troubles. This paper was written to provide the general public with the background of science so that when they encounter scientific issues, or public policy issues that utilize science, they will have a basis for interpreting the scientific information. I would like to point out, and hopefully, you will read my thoughts on these scientific significant issues and concern as well as troubles.

The Issues and Concerns with Science

Modern scientists have tools and techniques that were unavailable to previous scientists. Yet these tools and techniques have several issues and concerns as to their limitations, accuracy, and appropriateness. There are also a few unanswered questions in science that could potentially have a significant impact on science. Some of the most important are as follows.

The Troubles with Science

Science is in trouble in the 21st century, and it has been in trouble since the latter part of the 20th century. I have insufficient knowledge to provide an examination of all the issues and solutions facing science, but I have highlighted the most important (in my opinion) of these issues.

07/28/19 Executive Orders

As the head of the executive branch of the federal government, the President is responsible for ensuring that all the nation’s laws are “faithfully executed.” In other words, the President carries out the legislation enacted by Congress but cannot originate legislation themselves.

While constitutionally speaking, the president is empowered only to sign or veto legislation that Congress sends to his desk, presidents have in recent years become more assertive in interpreting legislation through the use of signing statements or executive orders. These statements and orders often raise objections to the provisions of a particular law on constitutional grounds and instruct executive branch officials how to enforce the laws or implement the legislation according to the President’s interpretation of the law or legislation. If the President has objections on Constitutional grounds, they should veto the legislation and allow Congress to override or not override the veto.

However, in recent decades signing statements or executive orders have been issued that go beyond the bounds of Presidential authority. They are often utilized to circumvent the authority of Congress, to selectively enforce or ignore laws, or to spend monies in ways not allocated by Congress, amongst other usages not within Presidential authority.

Many lawsuits have been filed to challenge these Executive Orders. Some of these lawsuits have succeeded in blocking an Executive Order, but many more have not succeeded. In most cases, these lawsuits have been filed to block or postpone Executive Orders that are Constitutional, but the filer of the lawsuit disagrees with. A District or Circuit Court Judge can effectively impede the functioning of the Executive Branch while these lawsuits are litigated. And this litigation can take many months or years to resolve, all the while restricting the functioning of the Executive Branch. Judicial reform needs to be implemented to correct and speed up legitimate Executive Order lawsuits to resolve these lawsuits.

All this needs to stop. I am for Executive Orders that direct the Executive Branch in enforcing the laws or legislation, but against Executive Orders that go beyond enforcing the laws or legislation. I am for legitimate legal challenges to Executive Orders, but against lawsuits for the purposes of delay or disagreement. As to the solution to these problems I must defer to more knowledgeable and wiser persons who are experienced in these matters.

07/27/19 To Exonerate or to Not Exonerate, That Is the Question.

With all the talk of President Trump not being “exonerated’ by the Muller investigation, we need to keep in mind the true meaning of exoneration. The most basic meaning of Exoneration is - “The condition of being relieved from blame or obligation” and to Exonerate – “Pronounce not guilty of criminal charges”. But who is capable of exonerating another? To exonerate another, you need to have all the facts and circumstance surrounding the incident that is to be exonerated. This is often a very difficult effort to accomplish. When making a judgment you should also make sure that you have all the facts of the situation, for without all the facts it is most likely that you will make a poor judgment. In this it is best to remember one of my “Principles”:

“There are three sides to every story; one side, the other side, and the truth. It is best to discover the truth before making up your mind.”

Without all the information it is not possible to exonerate someone. Or, as Alan Dershowitz has said:

 “Exoneration is for God, historians and other non-legal institutions that have access to the totality of information.”

Therefore, it is impossible for the legal system to exonerate anyone. All the legal system can do is pronounce someone guilty or not guilty based on the evidence presented in court. And this pronouncement is done by a jury of peers, not by the prosecutor, nor defense, nor a judge (except in very limited legal circumstances).

To include the words exonerate, exoneration, exonerated, or exonerative in any legal proceeding is dangerous to the “Rule of Law” as Alan Dershowitz has written in his article here. In a legal proceeding, the prosecutor can indict or not indict, charge or not charge, a suspect, but never exonerate anyone. And if the prosecutor cannot charge or indict someone than they must remain silent so as to not damage the character or reputation of a suspect or witness.

Therefore, it is not possible to exonerate President Trump of anything and all talk of exoneration should cease.

07/16/19 Wisdom

As I have said in one of my “Principles”: “You may be the smartest person in the room, but you're not the only person in the room, and most times you are not the smartest person in the room”. This is not only true for “Intelligent” but also for “Wisdom”, as wisdom requires intelligence and experience. Or as I have stated in one of my “Truisms”: “True Wisdom Most Often Comes from Bitter Experience... Considered!”.

And so, it is with many of today's public figures. Celebrities, sportsmen and sportswomen, entertainers, wealthy individuals, and others who have excelled in their field of endeavor believe that they have a special insight on subjects for which they have not excelled. More specifically, they think that they are wiser on politics or social policy for which they espouse. Very rarely is this the case. They are most often expressing their feelings rather than their thoughts on a subject, and feelings can often lead you astray.

Sometimes we substitute our feelings for thoughts, but thoughts and feelings are two different things, and we should characterize each as such. Most times it is much easier to feel about something rather than think about something and to make up our minds based on feelings rather than thought.  But we should always think about things before we make up our minds. And we should always utilize our “Knowledge, Experience And Wisdom” and “With Facts, Intelligence, And Reasoning” as I have stated on these topics within other observations. And when we think about something, we should utilize our feelings only as a guideline, never as reasoning. It is also important that we occasionally re-examine our thinking, as new knowledge, experience, or wisdom in our life could lead us to a different conclusion.

Or, as Dennis Prager has more elegantly put it:

“People who excel in one thing are tempted to think they are smart about everything, but that is almost never the case. There is no reason at all to assume that people who excel in anything (other than wisdom) are wiser than anybody else. And here's the kicker: People who think they are wise because they excel at something unrelated to wisdom are fools.”

07/15/19 Rare Earth Minerals

In May of 2018, The Department of the Interior published a list of 35 mineral commodities considered critical to the economic and national security of the United States. This list is the initial focus of a multi-agency strategy to implement President Donald J. Trump's Executive Order to break America's dependence on foreign minerals.

The mining and manufacturing of rare earth minerals are a key component of much of modern electronic equipment and other manufactured products. If these mining operations were destroyed, damaged, or halted it would not be possible to manufacture many pieces of electronic equipment or other goods. We need to develop multiple mining operations for these rare earth minerals over several continents where those rare earth minerals are located for the benefit of all Americans.

Unfortunately, some of these rare earth minerals are not located within the United States and we are dependent on foreign countries for our needs. However, many of these rare earth minerals are located within the United States but are on Federal lands protected by mining prohibitions and environmental protection regulations. As a result, these rare earth minerals are not mined within the United States. As these rare earth minerals are critical to our economy and our society, we need to start locating these rare earth minerals that are within the United States. I would suggest that we relax the mining prohibitions and environmental protection regulations for the exploration of these rare earth minerals. If, and when, they are found we then need to determine if it is safe and environmentally friendly to mine these rare earth minerals then modify the mining prohibitions and environmental protection regulations to allow for the mining of these rare earth minerals.

07/14/19 A Looming Disaster

With the recent electrical blackouts that have occurred within the United States, we are reminded of the absolute necessity of reliable electrical power. However, there is a lack of awareness of several looming issues and concerns regarding reliable electrical power.

The generation of electricity, the transmission of electricity over the national electrical grid, and the distribution of electricity to the general public, businesses, and industries are currently facing many troubles and possible massive disruptions in the near future. The National Academy of Engineering has a good overview of these issues and concerns here and as they stated below:

The US power infrastructure is one of the largest and most critical infrastructures in the world. The country’s financial well-being, public health, and national security depend on it to be a reliable source of electricity to industries, commercial entities, residential facilities, government, and military organizations.

Considering the complexity and age of most of the equipment in the US power infrastructure, the lifetime reliability is extraordinary—and it has improved in the last ten years (NERC 2017). Future system reliability may be challenged, however, by the effects of climate change, increasing supplies of renewable energy, and potential cyberattacks.”

The time needed to fix these issues and concerns (decades) and expense (up to 5 trillion dollars) make this a big challenge. But it is a challenge we need to meet to assure reliable electrical power within the United States.

07/11/19 Thou Shall Not Covet

The Tenth Commandment of the Bible, given by God to Moses states:

“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

And your neighbor’s wealth is something that belongs to your neighbor. If your neighbor earned their wealth through legal, moral, and ethical means then their wealth is no concern of yours, and you should not covet it. When you advocate taxing the rich more to support government programs that benefit yourself, or other people, then you are coveting your neighbor’s wealth. For the takings of monies from those that have earned it to the giving of these monies to those that have not earned it, rather than the taking of monies for the good of all is coveting. Whether it is done by an individual or a group of people it is still coveting.

Abraham Lincoln stated this succinctly about slavery:

"You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it." No matter in what shape it comes, whether from the mouth of a king who seeks to bestride the people of his own nation and live by the fruit of their labor, or from one race of men as an apology for enslaving another race, it is the same tyrannical principle.
- Abraham Lincoln

The first sentence; "You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it." is the crux of this Chirp.

Democratic socialism, wealth redistribution, income inequality adjustment, tax the rich, occupy Wall Street, free education, free healthcare, etc. is all the same principle – "You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it." For to implement the above government policies requires that you take from one class of people (those that work and toil) and give it to another class of people (those who do not work and toil). This taking of their wealth would have to be accomplished through Government coercion through threats of fines and/or imprisonment if you do not give up your labor (i.e. wealth). This is not the same as taxes, as taxes are levied to support the necessary functions of the government for the good of all, not for the good of some.

This taking restricts the freedom of those that work and toil by deciding how much of their labor is theirs and how much of their labor is to be given to those who do not work and toil. This taking also restricts the liberties of those that work and toil to utilize the monies they earned as they see fit. It also restricts the freedoms of those that work and toil by imposing the governments will upon them by despotic oppression (see my “Freedom From – Liberty To” Chirp). Therefore, the government is the master of the people as it is the decider, and the people are the serfs of the government as they must obey the dictates of government. Or, as Abraham Lincoln said in the last sentence of the above quote; “it is the same tyrannical principle.”

07/09/19 The 18th Century

The 18th century (1700-1799) was a major turning point in human history. The world of 1800 was completely different than that of 1700. This difference impacted all areas of human activity; politics, religion, economics, government, human rights, science, technology, philosophy, the arts, etc...  These impacts were felt by all; from kings, princes, aristocrats, to the common man, rich or poor and everything in-between. The world was truly turned up-side-down in the 18th century. My article on "The 18th Century" provides an overview of this remarkable century.

07/08/19 The Secret Ballot

The secret ballot is a voting method in which a voter's choices in an election or a referendum are anonymous, forestalling attempts to influence the voter by intimidation, blackmail, and potential vote buying. At the time of voting, no one else knows who or what the voter chose. All voting should be voluntary and by secret ballot for these reasons. Only when political leaders vote on laws, rules, or regulations should there be public voting so that future voters can make an informed choice when they vote in secret.  It is also for this reason that I believe that political caucus voting without a secret ballot are undemocratic and susceptible to undue influences and even a mob mentality.

But the secret ballot is not only important for elections but in other areas of human interactions. A modern-day example of this is in sports teams being invited to the White House after winning a championship. Many members of these sports teams are quite vocal in their opposition to President Trump. They have the right to express their opposition to President Trump but in doing so they must recognize the rights of other team members who may wish to visit the White House. They often state that they have solidarity with other team members but is this the solidarity of opinion or the solidarity of intimidation into silence. As most of the vocal team members who are opposed to the White House visit are often the team leaders are the other team members who may not be opposed to the visit acquiescing for the purposes of team cohesion or the fear of possible loss of playing time or even retribution. We may never know, but the possibility exists.

This question of the solidarity of opinion or the solidarity of intimidation into silence arises in many other arenas of human interaction. Whenever there is public voting on any issue, political or non-political, there is this possibility. And when this happens the other name for it is bulling.

07/07/19 Fear and Intimidation in the USA

The 21st century has shown a dramatic increase in fear and intimidation in America. The political polarization and division in America, along with the actions of many people in support of their politics and policies, has led to this sad situation. And much of this has been done by leftist and progressives in America. They believe they have this right because of their Creed of Progressives and Leftists” as explained in another Chirp.

People are afraid to express their true thoughts, feelings, and opinions. The possibility of death threats, physical violence, doxing, loss of employment, loss of employment opportunity or employment advancement, loss of business revenue, loss of friendships and relations, etc. has led people to suppress their true thoughts, feelings, and opinions. Therefore, many polling predictions and election prognostications have been wrong. People are simply afraid of telling anybody what they really believe.

Our Freedom of Speech and Religion are suffering as a result. People can no longer peaceably assemble to support their policy position without fear of intimidation. In some places in America, they cannot even depend on police protection as the police are constrained by politically correct politicians. The 1st amendment to the Constitution is in danger, not by government actions, but by mob actions. And this must be stopped, or we cannot be a people dedicated to Freedom and Liberty.

Please Note - this is a companion Chip to my article "O say can you see" (Jul 2019) - A perspective on respecting the National Anthem.

07/06/19 Human Rights?

Many politicians who are calling for radical social change are claiming that it is a human right to this change. Free health care and free college are but two examples. Claiming that something is a Human Right does not make it a Human Right. The question then becomes are these indeed Human Rights? Human Rights are difficult to definitize. Civilizations and societies, and mostly Western civilization have been struggling with the definition of Human Rights for centuries and even millennia.

Human Rights are inherent in being human and not something that is bestowed upon you by society or governments. You also have no Human Right to take from someone to give to yourself or someone else, as that would violate the human rights of the taken from person. Therefore, anything bestowed upon you by society or governments, or is the result of taking from another, cannot be a Human Right. To claim otherwise is to demonstrate your lack of understanding of Human Rights. You do have the “Freedom From” a society or government preventing you from obtaining these goals, and the “Liberty To” obtain these goals by and for yourself, as “Freedom From” and “Liberty To” are Human Rights.

Therefore, the politicians who are propounding these social changes as Human Rights are either disingenuous or lack an understanding of Human Rights. As such, you should not give heed to their pronouncements.

07/05/19 A New Constitution

The previous four Chirps have explored the ideals of the American revolution. These ideals were codified in the U.S. Constitution. This Constitution has served us well for over two hundred years. Yet, today, we have seen this Constitution stretched beyond these ideals. To bring us back to these ideals I have proposed a rewriting of the U.S. Constitution to meets the demands of the 21st century. This rewrite is not a major overhaul, but a streamlined version that also adds particulars to the U.S. Constitution based on our governmental experiences of the 20th and 21st century. My proposed revisions, and notes on the revision, can be found at "A New U.S. Constitution".

07/04/19 The True Meaning of Independence Day

As we celebrate the 243rd anniversary of Independence we should not also celebrate Independence but the meaning of Independence. As I have outlined in my article “The Meaning of the American Revolution” the meaning of Independence is a set of ideals of independence. The ideals; Freedom from - Liberty to, Equality, and Justice, are expressed in my previous chips below. In the hoopla of our celebratory activities we often do not consider these ideals. Yet, these ideals are what defines us as a nation and the goals we strive for as a nation.

These ideals are incorporated into the U.S. Constitution, most especially in the Bill of Rights and other Amendments, to establish a government dedicated to these ideals. Yet, these ideals cannot be preserved by the government alone but must be sustained by a people dedicated to these ideals. To this end we should remember the following quotes:

“The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.” -- author Thomas Charlton in a biography of Major General James Jackson (1809)

"But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing.  It behooves you, therefore, to be watchful in your States as well as in the Federal Government." -- Andrew Jackson, Farewell Address, March 4, 1837

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania (1759)

The 20th century in America saw many changes in society that challenged these ideals. The shift from a States to a Federal focus on government challenged these ideals. The rise of more Federal intervention into the daily lives of Americans also strained these ideals. As we progressed from an agrarian to an industrial to a technological society these ideals often needed to be redefined to meet the needs of society. And in the 21st century, we see a full-scale assault on these ideals. As I have outlined in my article “A New Declaration of Independence” these assaults are numerous and pervasive in modern American society.

As we celebrate this 4th of July we all should consider these ideals and issues in modern American society. We must rededicate ourselves to these ideals so that as President Abraham Lincoln stated in his Gettysburg address:

“that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom - and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

06/30/19 Justice For All

What is Justice?  Justice, in its broadest context, includes both the attainment of that which is just and the philosophical discussion of that which is just. The concept of justice is based on numerous fields, and many differing viewpoints and perspectives including the concepts of moral correctness based on ethics, rationality, law, religion, equity and fairness. Often, the general discussion of justice is divided into the realm of social justice as found in philosophy, theology and religion, and, procedural justice as found in the study and application of the law. - From the Wikipedia Article "Justice".

This Chirp is about Justice in a legal sense. The path to legal Justice throughout history has been long and torturous. For thousands of years, societies throughout the world have tried to determine the meaning of legal Justice. Today, in 21st century America, we have determined the best definition of Justice is the creation of Just Laws and the application of these laws through the "Rule of Law".

The first step to Justice is the creation of Just Laws. For you cannot justly administer an unjust law.  Our forefathers devised a system for the creation of laws that would be just. They created three branches of government; Legislative for the creation of laws, Executive to enforce the law, and Judicial to administer the law. The checks and balances built into this system were to assure that the laws would be just and not infringe on the human and Constitutional rights of the people. But no system devised by men is perfect, and there are many instances of unjust laws in our history. However, our system allows for the reexamination of laws to revise or rescind a law in the Legislative branch, to provide for discretion in enforcing the law in the Executive branch, or to overturn a law by Judicial branch review of its constitutionality. Eventually, unjust laws are overturned to assure a more perfect Justice. But this requires that:

Eternal vigilance of Laws by all is necessary for the achievement of Just Laws.

The next step is the administration of Just Laws through Legal proceedings utilizing the Rule of Law. Without the Rule of Law, there can be no Justice. But the Rule of Law requires that several concepts and tenets be enforced for Justice to prosper as explained in my article "The Rule of Law". These concepts and tenets are “Etched in Stone”. They are:

Concepts- Due Process, Speedy Trial, Presumption of Innocence, Trial by Jury, Burden of Proof on Prosecutor or Plaintiff, No Burden on Defense.

Tenets - An Independent Judiciary, Probable Cause, Equality Under the Law, Equal Protection of the Laws, Pursuit of Justice, Pardons and Commutations, Full Faith and Credit, Contract Law Enforcement.

The rule of law must be sacrosanct in all legal proceedings for there to be any hope of Justice. It is also an excellent guide in our public and private dealings and judgments of others. For without using these guidelines in our dealings with others it is too easy to reach a possibly wrong conclusion about someone. These wrong conclusions could lead to the person losing their reputation, employment, wealth, future opportunities, and even family and friends. These things should never be taken from anyone without credible, verifiable, and substantiated evidence of wrongdoing. To do so otherwise would cause serious harm to the individual and to the social fabric of our society. But it is most important to remember:

To assure Justice for All you must dedicate yourself to the Rule of Law.
Not only the Rule of Law for yourself but Rule of Law for all.
To do otherwise means there will be No Justice for Anyone.

06/29/19 Equality

As stated in the Declaration of Independence “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” does not mean we that we are all created equal in our physical abilities and mental capacities. Nobody is created equal in their physical abilities and mental capacities – we are all created differently as regards to these factors. What it means is that we are all created equal in our Human Rights and that no person, organization, society, or government may violate our Human Rights. These Human Rights also assumes that each person is entitled to pursue happiness. The right to pursue happiness is any legal activity as long as it does not infringe on the rights of others. This pursuit of happiness is to be unencumbered by any laws, rules, and regulations that do not apply to all. We should all have an equal opportunity to pursue happiness based on our physical abilities and mental capacities as well as our own efforts to achieve happiness. Equality is not a guarantee of equal outcomes but a guarantee of equal opportunity and equal treatment. This means that in practice that some will be more successful in achieving their happiness, some will fail, but most will achieve some degree of happiness. And many times, this success or failure is due to the inequality of our physical abilities and mental capacities. It’s called "Life".

06/26/19 Freedom from - Liberty to

One should distinguish between the terms "Freedom" and "Liberty." Speaking generally, Freedom usually means to be free from something, whereas Liberty usually means to be free to do something, although both refer to the quality or state of being free. Freedom generally means you are free from despotic oppression, whether it be by a government, an aristocracy, a theocracy, or an individual or group. Freedom of Religion, Speech, Press, Assembly, Petitioning Government, or to Bear Arms, etc. refers to the release from despotic restraints. Liberty on the other hand gives you the right to choose a course of action. How to spend your money, what job or occupation you wish to pursue, where you live, who you associate with, what education you undertake, who to marry, or any personal decision you make is liberty. Freedom is not to be used in the sense of our being free to do anything we want. All laws can be viewed as a restriction on freedom and liberty, and such restrictions are proper in any well-regulated society. But they are only proper to prevent one person’s freedom and liberty from infringing on another person’s freedom or liberty. It is this balance between each person’s Freedom and Liberty that defines the state of a Free society.

06/07/19 Something We Should All Agree Upon

The following is a quote from a Democratic Senator and Presidential candidate which I hope that all of us can agree upon. Although I am opposed on almost all of the issues that this candidate supports I do support her in the following statement:

"I'm deeply grateful for the opportunities America has given me. But the giant 'American' corporations who control our economy don't seem to feel the same way. They certainly don't act like it. Sure, these companies wave the flag -- but they have no loyalty or allegiance to America. ... These 'American' companies show only one real loyalty: to the short-term interests of their shareholders, a third of whom are foreign investors. If they can close up an American factory and ship jobs overseas to save a nickel, that's exactly what they will do -- abandoning loyal American workers and hollowing out American cities along the way. ... The result? Millions of good jobs lost overseas and a generation of stagnant wages, growing income inequality, and sluggish economic growth. ... We can navigate the changes ahead if we embrace economic patriotism and make American workers our highest priority, rather than continuing to cater to the interests of companies and people with no allegiance to America."
- Senator Elizabeth Warren

As to my reasons for support this statement I would direct you to my article "Tariffs - A Double Entry Ledger".

06/01/19 Signifying Nothing

Many politicians espouse policy positions that sound good (and some not so good). When pressed for more information on how the policy would work they often resort to platitudes of what it would or would not do. They most always never speak of the workings, funding, and costs of these policy positions. Yet these details are needed to ascertain how the policy would actually work and its impacts on society. After all, as it has been remarked many times “The devil is in the details”. Without these details being available I would quote Shakespeare “It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing”.

From Macbeth, spoken by Macbeth - By William Shakespeare

Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

05/28/19 RIP Murray Gell-Mann

Murray Gell-Mann, the Nobel laureate physicist who died Friday, May 24, at age 89, also lived two lives. But both were spent learning — about how the world works. In his first life Gell-Mann was perhaps the preeminent theoretical physicist of his era, playing a prime role in revealing the architecture of the subatomic world. In his second life he pioneered the study of complexity, probing the behavior of systems ranging from economics to the weather, too complicated for the reductionist methods of particle physics.

By far, Gell-Mann is most famous for the idea of quarks, the building blocks of most Earthly matter. Before 1964, physicists believed that atoms assembled themselves from only three fundamental parts — electrons, protons and neutrons. Electrons even today remain indivisible. But Gell-Mann suspected that protons and neutrons — the constituents of the atomic nucleus — concealed smaller particles within.

Gell-Mann expressed his concern with science’s frequent lack of openness to researchers challenging conventional wisdom. “Most challenges to scientific orthodoxy are wrong,” he said. “A lot of them are crank. But it happens from time to time that a challenge to scientific orthodoxy is actually right. And the people who make that challenge face a terrible situation — getting heard, getting believed, getting taken seriously.” He called the inherent opposition of traditional science to daring novelty “the pressure of received ideas.”

05/18/19 I'm With Stupid

In my Chirp “The Creed of Progressives and Leftists“ I noted that they believe that they are more intelligent, better educated and morally superior so that they, therefore, of course, are always correct. This Creed leads them to believe that if you oppose a Progressive/Leftist you must be dumb or stupid. And they behave and speak to those that disagree with them as if they were dumb or stupid. They disparage those who disagree with them, as I have noted in my Chirp “The Three D's”, and utilize pejoratives about their intelligence. They also utilize the term “evolved” to describe a person who has changed their position to a more progressive/leftist stance. They forget that evolving goes not necessarily mean becoming better. Many species evolve then become extinct, as the evolution was not conducive to their (changing) environment. Evolution does not necessarily mean improvement, and it certainly does not have anything to do with intelligence. But then, since I often disagree with progressives and leftists, based on “Facts, Intelligence, and Reasoning” I, therefore, must be stupid. Given the above, I am proud to say, “I’m with stupid.

05/15/2019 Just Ain't So

As Mark Twain was once famously quoted:

“It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.”

Or, as in one of my favorite locutions:

“Just because you "believe" something to be true does not mean that you "know" something is true, and just because someone says it is true doesn’t make it true.”

And so, it is, with many Americans thinking something is true when it is not true. One of the reasons for this is not distinguishing between facts and statistics. I have covered Statistics in my observation on “Statistics and Polling’ and, therefore, I need not do so here. You should also keep in mind, however, that if the “facts” utilized for the statistics “Ain't So” than the statistics “Ain't So”. Another reason is the inability to distinguish between Lies and Beliefs as discussed in my article “ Lies and Beliefs” 

The big problem, however, is facts. Americans are inundated with many “facts” during their daily lives, and many of these “facts” are untrue. Many of these “facts” are told by people who believe them to be true, but they never determined if they were true. We are all human and make mistakes, or we have the inability or lack of time to determine the facts.  Therefore, these people are often mistaken and not malicious. However, some people recite “facts” to gain an advantage or to persuade you to their beliefs. These people are behaving in a disingenuous manner and you should be wary of them. In your daily life, these people may be difficult to distinguish. Simply be wary of any statement of fact from someone who is not knowledgeable nor experienced in the subject matter, or who is unknown to you.

What I am more concerned about is the “facts” utilized in public policy discussions or debates, as well as by politicians.  These people wish to persuade you of the correctness of their policy positions. As such, they often only inform you of the “facts” that support their position. They often do not place their “facts” in context, or are selective of their “facts”, or omissive of other contravening “facts”. Their “Reasoning”, as discussed in my observation, is also often fallacious. As such, it is not possible to ascertain the rightness of their position. Before you accept any policy position be careful of the facts and reasoning. Otherwise it “Just Ain't So”.

05/14/19 Tax Returns Confidentiality

Several States have begun legislative action to place constraints on whom may run for President of the United States on their ballots. More specifically they are requiring a Presidential candidate to release several years of Federal Tax Returns to be placed on the ballot. Some States are also requiring that State Tax Returns be released to Congress if Congress Requests them. I believe that both of these actions are unconstitutional.

Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 of the Constitution says to serve as president, one must be: (1) a natural-born U.S. citizen of the United States; (2) at least thirty-five years old; and (3) a resident in the United States for at least fourteen years. Adding any other criteria to be placed on a State ballot would violate the Constitution by adding additional requirements. If you can add additional requirements could you also add a requirement for race, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, veteran status, disability, military service, political affiliation, or another status? Of course not! But if you can add one requirement you can add other requirements. The only legitimate requirement to be added to a State ballot is that a certain number or percentage of the state voters sign a ballot petition for a person to be placed on a ballot. This is necessary to reasonably limit the number of persons on a ballot. These actions could also be interpreted as a Bill of Attainder -a legislative act that singles out an individual or group for punishment without a trial. The Constitution of the United States, Article I, Section 9, paragraph 3 provides that: "No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law will be passed." In this case, it is to limit President Trump from running in their State unless he releases his tax returns. There is no legitimate purpose for releasing any tax records for any taxpayer, as this information is privileged between the taxpayer and the IRS

There is also no legitimate purpose for releasing State Tax records for any taxpayer as this information is privileged between the taxpayer and the appropriate State tax authority. To break this privilege is no endanger the collection of taxes as many people would be reluctant to provide true and accurate information to a State Tax Authority on fear of it being released to damage their reputation or to harm them some way. No freedom and liberty loving person should be fearful that their government damage their reputation or to harm them some way, for this could lead to tyranny by the government.

05/14/19 A Constitutional Crisis

Many Democratic politicians and progressive media commentators are proclaiming that we are in a Constitutional Crisis – and I agree with them! But it is not the crisis that they are proclaiming but the crisis that they are fermenting. The actions of the current Executive Branch are typical reactions to the Legislative Branch actions throughout U.S. history. We need not go back further than the administration of President Obama to demonstrate Executive Branch reactions to Legislative Branch actions. Resisting subpoenas, withholding information, invoking Executive Privilege, evasive answers, and other methods have been utilized by the Executive Branch to thwart what they thought were Legislative Branch incursions on the Executive Branch duties and responsibilities. Sometimes the Executive Branch was in the right, and sometimes they were in the wrong. Usually, through negotiations or Judicial Branch interventions, these issues were resolved or lay dormant.

The Legislative Branch does have the duty, under the Constitution, to create laws and have oversight of Executive Branch actions.  However, these duties and responsibilities require a legitimate legislative purpose in creating laws or proper Congressional oversight. It does not allow the Legislative Branch to do whatever it pleases. If the Legislative Branch could do whatever it pleased it would devolve into a Star Chamber unconstrained by the Rule of Law (see my article on

The Rule of Law in Non-Judicial Proceedings” for more information). The Legislative Branch requests for information, testimony, and subpoenas to the Executive Branch must serve a legitimate Legislative Branch purpose, and not a political purpose. The current actions of the House of Representatives are not for legitimate Legislative Branch purposes and, indeed, are politically motivated. As such, they are the cause of our current Constitutional Crisis.

There is no legitimate purpose for subpoenaing the Attorney General to release information that by law they are not allowed to release. There is no legitimate purpose for demanding the underlying documentation of a criminal investigation, some of which is Grand Jury testimony that cannot be released by law, or Classified Information that may only be released to approved Congressional Committees that they then must keep secret. There is no legitimate purpose for subpoenaing tax records for any taxpayer as this information is privileged between the taxpayer and the IRS, unless the Legislative Branch can demonstrate by evidence, not suspicion, that it requires this information for legitimate Legislative Branch purposes. Persons testifying before Congress should not be set-up for perjury traps, nor should they incur a significant financial obligation in lawyer fees to protect themselves from possible perjury traps. There are no legitimate Legislative Branch purposes for the accusations and pejoratives utilized to describe Executive Branch persons and actions, except to hinder the Executive Branch from performing their duties and responsibilities.

As such, the House of Representatives is fermenting a Constitution Crisis by stepping outside the bounds of their legitimate Legislative Branch duties and responsibilities. They are also violating their Oath of Office to uphold the Constitution of the United States. The House of Representatives must be roundly condemned for these deeds and words, and put an end to these actions, for this Constitution Crisis to pass.

05/12/19 Condemned to Repeat It

Warfare, slavery, oppression, infanticide, human sacrifice, and female subjugation have all be constants throughout human history and in all societies. African, European, Asiatic, Native North American, and Native South American civilizations have all engaged in these practices. It is only in the last few centuries that these practices have been recognized as immoral. It was in European Society, guided by Judeo-Christian values, that the idea of the dignity of the individual human being and human rights arose and bloomed. With this recognition came the ideal of self-government, the advancement of the arts and sciences. and the development of capitalism which supplied goods and services to the common man (see my comment on this in my article “Capitalism is Freedom and Liberty”).

Yet, even in this development of the dignity of the individual human being and human rights, there were abuses and shortcomings. This is because this development was a struggle that had setbacks during its advancement. Man is imperfect and makes bad choices, or is good or evil, and lacked the knowledge or experience of the proper morals and ethics to achieve these goals. When we make a historical judgment on a society or personage, we need to keep this, and other factors in mind when making these judgments. My article “Condemned to Repeat It”  examines these factors and how to best make a judgment.

05/07/19 Social Media and Freedom of Speech

As I have written in my article “Slander & Libel on Social Media and Journalism” social media is playing a more active role in our society as a source of news and political commentary. As such, we must be assured that all sides of news and political commentary have a voice. To not do so is to skewer the social and political scene, which can lead to undesirable and unforeseen results. Unfortunately, many social media outlets are banning speech that they disagree with. The majority of these bans most often occur on the conservative viewpoints of social and political speech. And this must stop as it is harmful to the body politic. I am aware of the Constitutional and legal issues in regard to legislating an end to this banning as I have outlined in the before mentioned article. I would encourage you to read this article for my thoughts on this subject.

05/07/19 Alt-Right and Alt-Left (Far-Left)

The alt-right, or alternative right, is a loosely connected far-right, white nationalist movement. The term is ill-defined, having been used in different ways by various groups and individuals. A largely online movement, the alt-right is found primarily in the United States, where it originated, although alt-rightists are also present elsewhere in the world. Constituent groups that associate with the "alt-right" label have been characterized as hate groups.

The far-left term has been used to describe ideologies such as: communism, anarchism, anarcho-communism, left-communism, anarcho-syndicalism, Marxism–Leninism, Trotskyism, and Maoism. Since 2016, the term alt-left has also been used to refer to political views at the extreme end of this spectrum, and to those who adhere to such views.

In my opinion, I believe that the alt-right and alt-left are abhorrent to everything that I have written on this website. They regularly espouse views that are contrary to Human Rights and Constitutional Rights. Although they have the Free Speech right to express these views we who abhor these views have the Free Speech right to condemn these views. And they must be condemned. Condemned but not silenced, as this would be a violation of their Free Speech rights.

05/04/19 To Not Tolerate the Intolerant

How often have you heard some say “I will not tolerate the intolerant”. The real question I have for those that make this statement is “Who gets to determine what is intolerant?”. Everybody has a different definition of what is intolerant speech. If we utilize everybody's definition then there would be no free speech by anybody. Do we set up a commission that determines what speech is to be allowed or disallowed? Who and how would we determine the membership of this commission? How would we enforce the commission's rulings? What would be the penalties for violating the commission rulings? And how would it be possible to review what is said, either before or after what is said, to determine if it was intolerant? Without a commission, the only way to determine intolerant speech is by mob rule. And mod rule leads to an uncivil society that I have discussed in my article “A Civil Society”. Most of the times when I have heard this statement uttered it is by Progressives or Leftists who utilize this statement to shout down or shut down the free speech rights of their opponents. This also leads to an uncivil society. Those who make this statement are really engaging in behavior that I have discussed in my article “Modern American Fascism” and, indeed, are themselves, intolerant people.

05/02/19 MAMA

When Presidential hopeful Joe Biden was asked if he had a theme like President Trump's "Make America Great Again," Biden replied, "Make America moral again." MAMA is a nice acronym for the Democratic Party, as they often espouse positions that advocate the government be responsible for making decisions for the individual that the individual should make for themselves. Just as your mama wants to tell you what to do and direct your life so does the Democratic party. Therefore, MAMA is the perfect acronym for the Democratic party.

04/27/19 Making Predictions

As the famous and brilliant physicist Richard Frymen once said, “String theorist don’t make predictions, they make excuses”. This is not a chirp on String Theory but a chip on making predictions. More specifically the making of predictions by political commentators, political pundits, pollsters, and economists. As all four of these activities are intertwined with human decision making, they are very unscientific and subject to change very quickly. How often have political commentators, political pundits, pollsters, and economists made a prediction that turned out to be wrong, and sometimes the opposite of what occurred? And how often have you heard them making an excuse as to why their prediction was wrong? Many would say that this occurs most of the time. Whenever you are predicting how the public will react you are more likely to be wrong than right. It is analogous to baseball hitting. A great baseball hitter is one who gets a hit once every three attempts, while the other hitters have a lesser average of hits. And so, it is with have political commentators, political pundits, pollsters, and economists making a prediction. They are more often wrong than right. A wise listener or reader will look at their past performance in making predictions to decide if they should be believed. Whenever you do this remember that the greats will only get one of three correct while most will have a worse performance. Any political commentators, political pundits, pollsters, and economists with a great average of predictions are more like to be right and most are more likely to be wrong. But keep in mind that over two-thirds of predictions will be wrong, so take a prediction with a grain of salt.

04/27/19 Weather, Weather Everywhere

Everywhere you go there is weather. Good weather, bad weather, average weather, mild weather, cold weather, freezing weather, warm weather, hot weather, severe weather, storms, snow storms, rain storms, thunderstorms, hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. etc. etc.… And people are very interested in the weather, not only as it affects their lives but as it affects the lives of their family and friends and fellow citizens. This is as it should be, but it is just as important to retain your perspective of the weather. Do not assume the worst or best weather reports but assume the possibility of the best or worst weather reports.

In today’s weather reporting there is a propensity to hype the extremes of a weather report. This leads to good ratings, and increased revenues, for the weather reporters and media that reports on the weather. People get hyped and fearful that the worst is about to happen, and they react accordingly. These reactions are often not the best course of action and will often lead you to make irrational decisions. So, when you listen to a weather report do not assume the extremes but take precautions in the event the extreme occurs. The only caveat is when the authorities order an evacuation you should evacuate. To not do so is to endanger your life, health, and safety.

04/27/19 Precepts and Perspectives

In my many discussions with my cigar smoking buddies, we often discuss the issues of the day (along with sports, history, and other b.s.). During these discussions, I often keep in mind my observations on “Precepts”  and “Additional Perspectives” when discussing these issues. I believe we have a more thoughtful discussion when this occurs. I would encourage you to read these observations as I believe that these observations will make your discussions more levelheaded, and perhaps more harmonious.

04/25/19 The Green New Deal

Supporters of the Green New Deal exhibit their extensive lack of knowledge of science, engineering, and economics for believing that this is possible or practicable. They also have no idea of how energy is produced, distributed, and utilized. They fail to understand the life cycle costs, from mining, manufacturing, distribution, usage, and disposal of the materials utilized to produce energy that would result from the Green New Deal implementation. They also do not account for the economic impacts that The Green New Deal would inflict on people and commerce. The Green New Deals ranks with some of the most inane ideas proposed by politicians. No matter how a politician or supporter packages it, redefines it, or limit it. or lauds its goals it remains inane. I would encourage you to download and read the report “The New Energy Economy an Exercise In Magical Thinking” from the Manhattan Institute that examines this issue.

04/23/19 Euphemisms, Doublespeak, and Disingenuousness

Euphemism - An inoffensive or indirect expression that is substituted for one that is considered offensive or too harsh abound in today’s politically correct speech. But euphemisms can be very dangerous when utilized in regard to national security and social policy. In order to solve a problem, you need to recognize that you have a problem, clearly define the problem, and then clearly state the solution. Euphemisms do not contribute to clarity and indeed are often utilized to obscure the problem. Euphemisms are often utilized when identifying groups of people in order not to offend members of the groups, or to be deceptive as to the parties who are part of the problem or who are the victims of the problem. Euphemisms are often a means to doublespeak - language that pretends to communicate but actually does not. Disingenuousness - not straightforward or candid; giving a false appearance of frankness - is often the result when euphemisms and doublespeak are utilized.

When euphemisms are utilized in national security situations, we cannot clearly address the problems and solutions to terrorism and international aggression. When it comes to violence perpetrators and victims need to be clearly defined to identify the source and targets of the violence. Euphemisms, doublespeak, and disingenuousness do not solve any problems, and they contribute to the problem or allow the problem to fester. Anyone who utilizes euphemisms, doublespeak, or is disingenuousness needs to be ignored in order to solve a problem.

04/21/19 It's Complicated as an Excuse

No its not! We only make it complicated to avoid facing the truth. And the truth is that a bad decision was made that you don't want to admit. Whether it be in our personal life, our family life, our work environment, or in our social life bad decisions are often made. Saying "it's complicated" relieves us of the burden of admitting we made a bad decision. But this is a burden that we should gladly accept. By admitting it to ourselves, and thinking about the bad decision, we can learn from our bad decisions and hopefully not repeat them. By admitting our bad decisions and learning from it we can also forgive ourselves. And by admitting them to others we not only help others learn from our bad decisions but it may lead us to forgiveness from others or possible redemption.

04/12/19 Societal Hierarchies

Karl Marx decried Capitalism because it organized labor and management into hierarchies with labor the lowest rungs and management and ownership at the highest rungs, along with the distribution of wealth according to your position on this hierarchy. He thought that this was one of the biggest inequities of Capitalism and needed to be abolished. However, hierarchies are not a feature of Capitalism but a feature of Humanity. We, as humans, have always organized ourselves into hierarchies. Whether it was tribes that had a leader, enforcers, and followers, to governments that had kings, ministers, and commoners, we have always organized ourselves into hierarchies. Not only in government did this happen but in all areas of human activity i.e. commerce, entertainment, sports, armed forces, etc... Force or arms, inheritance, or wealth were often utilized to establish and maintain these hierarchies to the detriment of the common man. The difference in Capitalism is that ability was the prime driver in creating hierarchies. The person or persons who produced wanted goods or services at a lower cost rose in the hierarchy, while those who did not or faltered in doing so sank in the hierarchy. The positive effect of Capitalism was that all benefited by the goods or services at a lower cost. It also allows for any person who has a good idea, determination, perseverance, knowledge, and ability to move up in the hierarchy while those who did not have these capabilities to move down in the hierarchy, thus removing impediments to progress. Therefore, Capitalism is the best force for allowing equal opportunity for all, wealth redistribution, and human progress.

04/10/19 Personal Destruction

Another impact of The Three D’s is the personal destruction of the character and reputation of the person who it is directed at. This occurs not only in the governmental arena but also in political commentary by non-governmental persons. The following examples from the governmental arena are the most current illustrations of this:

I have commented more extensively on this issue in my article "The Rule of Law in Non-Judicial Proceedings" which is a companion piece to this chirp. The upshot of this personal destruction is a loss of faith in the instruments of government and the integrity of the people who serve in the government. This is also true in the political commentary arena. The secondary impact is on the willingness of good and capable people to enter public office or expressing political opinions. Why would any sane person wish to undergo this personal destruction? Therefore, many good people are avoiding entering public service or expressing political opinions to the detriment of society.

04/10/19 Demonize, Denigrate, Disparage (The Three D's)

When a conservative and liberal/progressive/leftists disagree, the conservative believes the liberal/progressive/leftists are wrong. However, the liberal/progressive/leftists often believes that the conservative is a racist, sexist, homophobic, mean-spirited or a money-grubbing person, amongst other epithets as I have explicated in my Article on the “Divisiveness in America”. The liberal/progressive/leftists then attempt to argue against a conservative position by utilizing the following Three D's tactics:

The liberal/progressive/leftists utilize these tactics as arguments in order to intimidate a conservative into silence or to intimidate a listener through guilt into not paying attention to a conservative. This illustrates how intellectually bereft many of their ideas are. Either way, these methods of the liberal/progressive/leftists is a bulling attempting to win their argument not through reason or intellect, but by silencing all opposition. This is very bad for the body politick as it cannot lead to understanding, and possible compromise, with their opposition to achieve a reasonable solution to public policy. Indeed, it often leads to bitter partisanship as the liberal/progressive/leftists opponent feels oppressed, and the liberal/progressive/leftists feel righteous. The liberal/progressive/leftists will then demand bi-partisanship, and since they are righteous, and the opponent is not, the liberal/progressive/leftists policy should be adopted.

04/09/19 Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Sign. Sigh. Sigh. Whenever I hear someone state that we need Comprehensive Immigration Reform I know that they are advocating a position that is not going to happen and are utilizing this term as a canard. It is not going to happen because it has not happened for several decades It is a canard because those that utilize this term know that it will not happen. The different sides of this issue have different meanings as to what constitutes Comprehensive Immigration Reform, and their different meanings are contradictory and polarizing. Therefore, given the political gridlock of these sides there will be no Comprehensive Immigration Reform, and I do not expect it to happen unless one side or the other obtain legislative and executive authority in enough numbers to ignore the other side (much like Obamacare). What needs to be done, immediately, on immigration is to secure the borders from drug runners, gang members, human traffickers, and other criminal elements. We should all agree that needs to be done and needs to be done immediately. But again, given the political gridlock of these sides, this may not happen. I would, therefore, want each 2020 Presidential candidate to state clearly the executive actions they would take on securing the borders from drug runners, gang members, human traffickers, and other criminal elements. We could then leave it to the American voters to decide how they wish to secure the borders based on the candidate's position. But again, I do not expect that this will happen.

04/04/19 The Real Issues for the 2020 Presidential CampaignTOC

The Presidential campaign of 2020 is heating up. On the Democratic side there appears to be a race to the leftist positions and what the Government should provide for the American people. The other side (centrists and conservatives) would prefer a debate on what they believe are the important issues. I believe the following are the important issues that need to be discussed (in alphabetical order):

04/01/19 Democratic Party 2020 Presidential Candidates

Listening to the Democratic Party 2020 Presidential candidates’ positions I believe that the following list is a succinct summary of their positions (in alphabetical order):

These campaign positions do not seem to be consistent with someone who has sworn to “Preserve, Protect, and Defend” the Constitution and its concepts of Federalism, Limited and Enumerated Powers, Equality Under the Law and Equal Protection of the Laws, the Bill of Rights, as well as Liberty and Freedom for All. To the contrary, they sound as if their proponents believe that they can do whatever they think is proper irrespective of the Constitution. God help us if they are ever put in a position of power where they can impose their will in contradiction to the Constitution. For if they do this, we will not be a free people but a people subservient to the government. Or perhaps, they are just perpetuation a “Foolie” on the American public.

04/01/19 To tweet or not to tweet? That is the question.

President Trump is fond of tweeting and much of these tweets are of a harsh nature. I do not particularly care for this type of political discourse. However, given the unrelenting negative discourse and commentary of President Trump by most of the news media, entertainment, academic, and sports world, as well as his political opponent's outrageous statements about President Trump his tweeting may be the only way to reach the American public with his perspective. They are also a means to exhibit to the American public the biases and unfairness of his opponents. Until his opposition changes its approach to civil discourse his tweeting may be the only way to counterbalance his opponent's equally uncivil discourse.

04/01/19 The Creed of Progressives and Leftists

The Creed of Progressives and Leftists is that as they are more intelligent, better educated, and morally superior they are, of course, always correct. To oppose them not only makes you wrong, but it also means that you are evil. And being evil the opponents of Progressives and Leftists need to be silenced, driven from the public square and public forums, their livelihoods or careers threatened, and they are not to be allowed to hold any positions of social, economic, or governmental power. They can also have their private and family lives intimidated or menaced by physical violence, if not actual violence. Progressives and Leftists believe that to demonize, denigrate, or disparage their opponents is the primary and acceptable means to accomplish this.

04/01/19 Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is, unfortunately, an excellent example of leftism in that she displays a comprehensive ignorance of economics, science, politics, history, and human nature. This ignorance is a condemnation of the American educational system that has become more interested in teaching its students what to think, and not how to think. It is also a condemnation of American society that has become more concerned about feelings rather than reasoning. As a result of these factors polite and respectful reasoned speech and writings are no longer considered an important attribute for the discussion of public policy. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other leftists are like the child in the supermarket that wines and throws temper tantrums to obtain the prettiest and shiniest object that attracts their attention. We should never give in to such a child as it only encourages further bad behavior. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is becoming the face of the Democratic Party and dragging them into politically untenable policy positions. In addition, the Democrats have been looking for a way to demolish the Republican Party, while the Republican Party have Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who will demolish the Democratic Party. Given that the Democratic Party is now in the throes of leftism that could destroy the American ideals of freedom and liberty perhaps we who espouse these ideals should cheer Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on in the hopes that this will destroy the leftist Democratic Party.

04/01/19 Foolies

In the Star Trek Episode (The Original Series) "Miri" the Enterprise responds to a distress signal from a planet in which all the adults have died and the children are living extended life spans. These children play a game called "Foolie" in which they can lie and/or be disingenuous to achieve their goals. Because these children had been without adult supervision for over three hundred years, the distinction between appropriate games and harmful violence had become somewhat blurred in their minds. To them, almost anything that amused them was acceptable behavior. And so, it is with modern leftists and many Democratic politicians. Never being taught what is acceptable behavior and speech, nor being chastised for inappropriate behavior or speech, leftist and Democratic politicians are constantly creating foolies. They believe they are so right in their opinions that foolies are appropriate to advance their causes. One of the reasons that freedom of the press was so important to our founding fathers was that they understood a free press would challenge what politicians and activists said or did. But as today's press is so sympathetic with leftist and Democratic politicians, they are no longer challenging the speech and actions of those that they agree with; indeed, many are supporting them. And until the press challenges the leftist and Democratic politicians’ actions and speech, they will continue to practice foolies on the American public.

04/01/19 Good for thee but not for me

As the Bible says in Matthew 7:5 “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.” Before you criticize or require someone to do something you need to examine your own life. Are you practicing what you preach, for if you are not you have no right to preach? To do so otherwise is to be a hypocrite. And if you preach it should be in a manner that is helpful, rather than demanding, of the other person(s). To demand that another does something is to make them subservient to your will. The only demands that you can place on another is to observe the human right of others and to obey the just laws necessary to establish and maintain a civil society. All other demands need to be cooperative and agreed upon rules and regulations for the benefit of all and not for some. If you wish to implement rules and regulations for others to follow you should follow these same rules and regulations in your own life before you insist that others follow them. Lead by example, not by dictates. And most important, faithfully keep to these rules and regulations in your own life. To not do this is to pronounce that something is “Good for thee but not for me”.

04/01/19 I don’t care if your feelings are hurt

I don’t care if your feelings are hurt, as long as I am expressing reasonable and intelligent positions in a polite and respectful manner and doing so in an honest and truthful way. I care about my spouse, parents, and children’s feelings, and perhaps my other family and friends’ feelings may be, and I am sensitive to their feelings. However, I have no control over what you do, think, and feel. I can only control what I do, think and feel. Your response to what I may say and do is a reflection on your thoughts and feelings, not on my thoughts and feelings. You may also be misinterpreting what I do or say, or perhaps I may be miscommunicating. If I am miscommunicating something, I will accept a critique (but not a criticism) and will try to do better or restate my thoughts. But for you to say that your feelings are hurt is not a valid objection or argument to what I do or say. Only a reasonable and intelligent response done in a polite and respectful manner, and doing so in an honest and truthful way, is a valid response to what I do or say. To make hurt feelings a valid response will result in the shutting down of free speech as someone, somewhere, feelings may be hurt by what is being said or done.

04/01/19 Words and Deeds

Words and deeds, or to pay attention to what one says or what one does. Too often in today’s society, we pay particular attention to what a person says and gloss over what a person does. It has become more important to communicate acceptably than to implement properly. The judgment of a person is often almost entirely based on what they say. But what a person says is not harmful (except emotionally) but what a person does can have positive or negative repercussions to all aspects of society. Therefore, we must pay more attention to the deeds of a person, and become more forgiving of what they say, if the deeds have positive repercussions. If the deeds have negative repercussions and the words are positive, we should be harsh in our judgment of the person. Of course, if both the words and deeds of a person have positive consequences, we should praise the person and elevate them into positions of responsibility within society. This judgment, of course, is very important for our political leaders. They must be held accountable for not only their words but their deeds. To ignore or discount one or the other in judging our politicians can be very harmful to society. Perhaps we should remember the wisdom of Benjamin Franklin – “Well done is better than well said.”

04/01/19 Both Sides Do It

Both Sides Do It (from my Observation on “Phrases”). Of course, both sides do it, in the human experience both sides do everything. That is the nature of humankind. Whenever there is an issue confronting our society the extremes of both sides of the issue will often use the same methodologies and techniques to attack the other side. So, therefore, the statement that both sides do it is irrelevant. The question is whether the mainstream and/or leadership of each side of the issue both do it and how much attention is paid to the extremes. In my experience, this is most obvious when dealing with Conservatism versus Progressivism or Leftism, Republican versus Democrat, left versus right, etc. What we should be asking is “are the mainstream and/or the leadership of each side are doing it?”. When you see one side or the other paying more heed, or engaging in extreme deeds or words, you need to weigh the balance. In weighing this balance, you need to not only make a determination of the number of words and misdeeds incidents, but also the tone of the deeds or words. If the balance is heavily tilted to one side than the phrase “Both Sides Do It” is not an equalizer, but an excuse to continue the extreme deeds or words by the one side engaged in these words or deeds.

04/01/19 Hypocrisy

Hypocrisy (from my Observation on “Phrases”). As Ben Franklin once said during the debate at the Constitutional Convention; "I have experienced many instances of being obliged by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important subjects, which I once thought right, but found to be otherwise." It is not hypocrisy if you change your mind based on better information or fuller consideration on an issue. It is hypocrisy when you change your mind based on trying to attain an advantage or political goal. Hypocrisy is a charge that should only be utilized by someone when they are flip-flopping their position to gain an advantage, rather than changing their position based on better information or fuller consideration. It is incumbent upon the politician who changes their position to explain the better information or fuller consideration on an issue that has led them to a change in their position, to assure that it is a true change and not hypocrisy.

04/01/19 Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors

In my Observation on “Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors” I point out that many who argue a political issue resort to Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors as a tactic. This tactic is the activity of obscuring people's understanding, leaving them baffled or bewildered and susceptible to accepting their conclusions. It is most often done by inserting oblique facts, nonsequiturs, exceptions to the rule, and the perfect vs. the practical. You should always go to the core issue of the argument and examine its meaning. When engaging in a debate blow away the Obfuscation, Smoke, and Mirrors and get to the core issue. Determine the facts and truths of the issue, then debate the actions to be taken.

04/01/19 Putting Words into Another’s Mouth and a False Dichotomy

In my Observation on “A False Dichotomy” and “Putting Words into Another’s Mouth” I have commented on these tactics that are too often utilized in today’s political discussions and debates. This tactic is to rephrase or restate what someone has said in the most negative connotation possible or to add negative statements into another’s mouth. They will also establish their position, then assert the position of the other party at the extreme opposite of their position thus putting words into another’s mouth. The person who put the words into another’s mouth then goes on to criticize the words they put into someone’s mouth. This is a dishonest and despicable tactic and wholly inappropriate manner to debate political issues. It is often done to disparage, denigrate, or demonize someone in the hope that the audience will not pay attention to what the other person actually said. It is your responsibility to only speak your own thoughts and reasoning or to quote the words of another person. After both sides have laid out their reasoning and conclusions then it is fair to critique the others reasoning or conclusions, based on what they have stated, not what you have stated for them.

04/01/19 Not Answering the Question or Talking Points Ad Nauseam

In my Observation “Not Answering the Question or Talking Points Ad Nauseam” this technique is also utilized in today’s political discussions. Too often someone will ask a question of another and the answer to the question is to ignore the question and start iterating a talking point. Talking points that do not answer the question, but simply state the policy or position of the answerer. Sometimes the talking points are an answer to the question the answerer wanted to be asked, but not answering the question that was asked. Other times the answerer will respond by asking the questioner a question rather than answering the question. This is not really an answer but a deflection to not answer the question. The answerer should not get to ask a question until they answer the questioners’ question. After all, if the answerer is going to ignore the questioner's question then the questioner can ignore the answerer's question. These techniques are done in order to not answer a question, usually because the answer to the question would expose a weakness or illogic in the answerers’ policy or position. I find that these techniques are extremely frustrating as they do not illuminate the policy or position but obfuscate the policy or position. Therefore, whenever I listen to a debate or discussion where these techniques are utilized, I become very wary. I am also disturbed as this is an attempt to preclude the exchange of reasonable and intelligent discussion or debate on policies and positions. It also makes me reevaluate the person, and the policy and position, of the person who evoked these techniques. I would suggest that you do the same.

04/01/19 Torturous and Convoluted Reasoning

As I have stated in my Observation “Torturous and Convoluted Reasoning” is another tactic used by those who engage in political debates. It is most often done to confuse the audience into accepting a conclusion that does not follow the facts or logic. It often contains many hidden assumptions that when they are exposed reveal the faultiness of the argument. When examining the argument, you should keep in mind a variation of Occam's Razor - “The simplest explanation, that fits all the known facts, is most often the correct explanation”.  Be suspicious when someone presents Torturous and Convoluted Reasoning to convince you of their conclusion. Examine the premises of the argument, seek out the hidden assumptions, assure that the logic of the argument contains no logical fallacies or cognitive biases before you accept the conclusions (as explained in my Observation on “Reasoning”). If you do this, you have a much greater chance of reaching the truth. A Torturous and Convoluted Reasoning argument may end up being true, but I would not bet on it.