Our rights do not originate with government, but they are to be "secured" by government.
Formerly: Libertarian Party of Citrus county

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanksgiving - Celebrating Private Property's Triumph Over Collectivism

By Tom Rhodes, 11/26/2014
I doubt anybody will notice but this as a repeat of my 2010 Thanksgiving article


As you know the original colony to Plymouth celebrated thanksgiving with the Indians in November of 1623. The Pilgrims arrived in December of 1621, and began their colony as a commune, and organized their farm economy along communal lines. The goal was to share the work and produce equally. This experiment again proved what the ancient Greeks observed eons before. As Aristotle wrote, "That which is common to the greatest number has the least care bestowed upon it."

The Pilgrims faked illness rather than working the common property. Some even stole, despite their Puritan convictions. The result was as winter of 1622 set in, they did not have enough food and provisions set for the winter and famine and privation ran rampant by the spring of 1623 only 5 women had survived. Gov. William Bradford wrote in his diary, "So as it well appeared that famine must still ensue the next year also, if not some way prevented.

The problem is that when people can get the same return with less effort, most people make less effort. This was an early harsh and historically repeated lesson that socialism and communism result in less production even to the point of starvation. Thus again proving that the rules set to us by God are best to live by. 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15

Later of the colonists, Bradford said, they "began to think how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop than they had done, that they might not still thus languish in misery. At length after much debate of things, (I with the advice of the chiefest among them) gave way that they should set corn every man for his own particular, and in that regard trust to themselves. And so assigned to every family a parcel of land. . . This had very good success, for it made all hands very industrious, so as much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been. By this time harvest was come, and instead of famine, now God gave them plenty, and the face of things was changed, to the rejoicing of the hearts of many."



Because of the change, the first Thanksgiving could be held in November 1623. Because of the abundance the Pilgrims not only were able to feed themselves, but to take care of those among them who try as they might failed to do so. It was private charity that took care of those less fortunate.

Thanksgiving is clear proof and evidence of the triumph of private property, connecting effort to reward, demonstrating that when everything is “shared equally” it incentivizes each person to contribute as little as possible to get their “equal” share. Whereas with every pilgrim given private property produced abundance which they could then trade with others for things they lacked. The free mutual exchange for mutual benefit makes the entire community richer.

We should all be thankful that we do not have to learn the lessons of protecting private property in the same deadly way that the pilgrims. Thanksgiving is the quintessential American holiday, copied by many other countries; it is a polar opposite of May Day. On Thanksgiving, we celebrate the fall of communism and are thankful for the abundance God provides through the free market.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Are the Ferguson Riots the Early Signs of Revolution

By Tom Rhodes, 11/25/2014

Remember Rodney King? It was the first use of a home video camera to capture police abuse that made national news. Form knocking suspects out of wheel chairs, to kicking handcuffed girls, to lobbing stun grenades at toddlers, the list of abuses by the police that go unpunished, or just result in a slap on the wrist is huge. Youtube has thousands of hours of video showing the not just police’s contempt for the people, but downright violent abuse. Just Googling “cops assault wheelchair” and the number of instances on video of cops beating up wheel chair bound people is astounding. The problem is that cops are only rarely even charged much less convicted of their crimes. The Rule of Law is dead.

No Knock raid on the wrong house resulting in death of black children are not uncommon in the USA. Nor is injury to innocent children uncommon. The fact is the police botch paramilitary no-knock raids so regularly they are now not news worthy. That and many in the press would rather not cover police abuse than become a victim of it.

The fact that the evidence clearly suggest Brown was justly shot as being a violent criminal attacking a cop is irrelevant. The Ferguson Riots now happening are not because in this instance a cop justly shot a criminal who happened to be black, the Ferguson Riots were triggered by a white cop shooting a black youth and not being charged with murder. With such a plethora of examples of the police getting away with assault and murder without being charged, and more so in the black community, it was bound to happen. Because the police have in general, and for good reason, lost all credibility, they are in a lose lose situation. A condition that they created for themselves.

Not all police are evil and abusive. But the Thin Blue Line, that exists that allows the minority of bad cops to literally get away with murder. Means every good cop that doesn’t arrest his fellow bad cop is a coconspirator and just as guilty. The reality is that black people commit a disproportionate amount of murder and assault, and usually against other black people. That means they will have a disproportionate amount of interaction with the police, and will disproportionately be abused by the police. Two decades of video showing disproportionate police abuse against blacks has had its toll.

The truth of the individual event is not relevant. The accumulation of police abuse and increased paramilitary tactics and more violent reaction of the police has systematically transformed the trust in the police and it will take decades to ever regain that trust. It’s not just the black community. All of America now generally distrusts the police. When you can’t drive without being stopped by homeland security and being asked about your citizenship. Watching grandma routinely getting felt up at the airport by the government “for our safety.” The fact is that killings by police outpace gang, drug, child-abuse homicides. BusinessWeek today headlines “NYC Incurs Record $732 Million Cost as Abuse Settlements Rise.” The reason abuse settlements are on the rise is that despite the well documented fact that crime in the USA is dramatically less, abuse by the police is up.

Our government, through our various law enforcement agencies, has clearly decided that they rule the people instead of serve the people. And as the sheer volume of laws increase, the amount of force to make a people who generally believe in freedom and liberty, bow to that ever increasing government is increasing proportionately. Obama announced over 3000 new regulations, without law being passed this week; that over 3000 more instances to use force against the people of the United States. This country was not founded by people, nor is it populated by people, who quietly bow down to government. The character of the USA is such that violence against an oppressive government is not considered immoral. One of the bloodiest wars in history was our Civil War.

The militarization of our police, coupled with Obama’s clear disregard for the rule of law and the Constitution is changing the game. Law enforcement officers routinely get away with disregarding the law. The idea that the law exists to control the people, not limit the ruling elite is pervasive in all levels of our government from the lowest deputy to the Commander and Chief of all the armed forces. That means the laws and duty to obey the state are no longer valid. It is the early signs of the destruction of our republic.

I suspect soon you will see direct threats against law enforcement personnel and their families. Soon after you will see them and their families killed for their abuse as a message to others that the people will not stand for their tyranny anymore. That will be followed by police quitting their jobs and the state finding it difficult to hire people to become LEOs. Small businesses will simply refuse to service or sell to LEOs and other government agents. This is already happening in some parts of the west.

I’m very conflicted about the Ferguson Riots. Rioting over a criminal being shot and the cop not being charged when the evidence is clear it was a just shooting is simply wrong, as is the looting; but the buildup and militarization of the police and clearly observable increase in police abuse with little or no legal means of ameliorating the problem cannot stand. The government has been exposed: exposed as thinking the people are stupid; exposed as not charging and trying big bankers who they know broke the law and destroyed hundreds of thousands of peoples fortunes and futures; exposed as having contempt for the average man; exposed as believing the law is meant to control the masses and not limit the ruling elite. The Ferguson Riots are just a symptom, a symptom of our government becoming tyrannical and the people refusing to acquiesce. Ferguson is just the urban version of the rural Bundy Ranch. The people are rebelling against tyranny.

We can’t escape and live free by moving to the frontier anymore. There is no more frontier. The state wants, nay demands, control of the people cradle to grave. The state is proving it willingness to use force to terrorize the people into capitulation. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these United States, it may now be a necessity to alter our former system of government.


UPDATE:
From Today's St. Louis Post-Dispatch were some interesting quotes that confirm the above.

Steven Rodriguez, 22, of Ferguson, said, “This violence wasn't planned. This happened because people are sick and tired of being shot and bullied by the police.”

With him was Kenneth Covington, 24, of north St. Louis, who added, “There have been so many black men killed by police but police are never held accountable for it.”

Briana Bobo, 25, Ballwin, stood outside the police station with tears in her eyes. “It seems that nothing that we do matters,” she said. “We can't win for losing.”

Monday, November 24, 2014

Net Neutrality is Simply the Liberal Response to Gruber

By Tom Rhodes, 11/24/2014

Jonathan Gruber let the cat out of the bag, liberals are apoplectic. The truth has been exposed, not that you saw it on ABCNNBCBS or even TMZ, until the internet forced the mainstream media to cover it. The facts are simple: Obamacare was purposefully written, to cloud how it works, and what it is, in order to fool the “stupid” American people; Obamacare was passed on purely Democrat votes in congress; Pelosi lied, she knew what was in it and told the “stupid” American people that it would have to be passed to see what was in it. Now exposed the one thing is clear liberals cannot be trusted, they believe they are smarter than you and therefore have the right to rule over you, and if lying in is what it takes to get you to accept the dictates of your betters, so be it.

Liberals are now realizing they may be screwed, and for a long time. In places where they think we can’t hear them they are saying, “How can we ever hope to trick – I mean ‘convince’ – the American people to trust us enough about made-up crises to ever again transfer massive amounts of money and power to us liberals and the institutions we control?”

Grubergate does more than just hurt Obamacare, it hurts all the liberal narrative they use to justify limiting freedom and increasing government control. Global Warming, shutting up “deniers” now everybody is going to go back and look at it with the idea that liberals are lying to control us. The fact that emails etc. where discovered showing they were trying to cook the books is nolonger just some “skeptics” daft ideas, it’s a pattern of liberals to fool the people. Their predictions have proven to be false again, and their lies uncovered, again. The liberals have lost trust in the people.

While we dug out from record early snow and cold, the people consider the fact that for nearly 2 decades there has been no global warming, one thing is clear, Global Warming was and a cash and freedom-devouring swindle. When liberals say, “Trust us. I know how a few years ago I said that by now the Northwest passage would be open all year round, and there would be no more snow, my timing was just a little off, wait till next year,” people will respond, “No more lies.”

Whatever liberals next big idea to fleece you of more tax dollars and take away more freedom, because it’s so damn importantIt’s kind of hard to build up a lot of trust for your next big idea when you excuse lying about your last big idea because it was so darn important, remember Grubergate.

President Obama isn’t helping the lack of trust in liberals and the Democrat party. A few years ago he said he didn’t have the constitutional authority to impose amnesty on illegal immigrants, noting Congress would have to pass a law. Thursday he said, I’m the Emperor and I’ll grant amnesty if I want to.

The common theme here is that because of the Internet, it is too easy for the average guy to research and compare what liberals said last year to this year. If it weren’t for the internet none of the lies of the liberals would have be forced out into the public. Oh a magazine article here and there might have made it out, but the majority of people would be forced to accept whatever ABCNNBCBS told them, with no fast, easy, reliable method to verify. Today the internet makes holding politicians accountable to what they say and promise much easier, and makes it much harder for the ruling elite to shape and manipulate public opinion.

So Called “net neutrality” is a position statists mostly liberals to take power from the people and grant the government new and unprecedented power to regulate the web. What sane person after the exposure of would ever allow this Administration to dig its claws into the only unregulated place to share freedom. Liberals angst and words and anger over We the Peoples refusal to trust them with more power over the online world are exactly why we shouldn’t trust them with more power over the online world. The idea that we are stupid for not trusting them, is absurd. Gruber and Obama’s own words clearly demonstrate that they think we are too stupid to know what’s good for us. What would be stupid is grant more power to control speech are so untrustworthy and absolutely proven to be liars.

It reminds me of one of John Wayne’s famous lines. As G.W. McKlintock, drunk at the bottom of the stairs with a woman other than his wife in his lap, as his wife, Kate McKlintock, played by the beautiful Maureen O’Hare, looks down at them, a very drunk GW says, “Are you going to trust what you see, or what I tell you.” But unlike in the movie where Mrs. Warren, confirms that GW was not doing anything wrong, when we verify what we see, it confirms that liberal statists are lying.

The push for “net neutrality” happening as Grubergate exposes the Obama Administration to be liars must be a coincidence. I mean you don’t think that taxing and new rules for who can say what on the internet has anything to do with the internet making it harder to control what the people are exposed? We can trust them, they would never use laws on “net neutrality” to silence certain speech. Just like the Patriot Act would only target terrorists, never mind that virtually all the arrests made from data collected under the Patriot act are for common criminal offenses and not terrorism. Don’t think it’s just Democrats, remember 1986 when we were told to “trust” the government, that amnesty was a onetime thing and the borders would be secure and we wouldn’t have an illegal immigrant problem again. The government has proven to be untrustworthy and should not be trusted with regulating the internet.

Trust the government, really??? Would you trust the tobacco companies to tell you smoking is not addictive and they show you a scientific study they paid for to prove it? Why then trust any study paid for by the government that concludes we need more government regulation and power? The only reason the government wants more laws and regulations on the internet is they want more power. The internet has proven to be a serious impediment to increasing statism. They are going to attack it over and over and over until they get control of our speech. They will never stop. The only way to remain free is constant vigilance. The truth is we cannot trust the government.

Thank you John Gruber, you have shed light on to the truth. Trusting liberals is foolish, they are proven liars and think so little of the American people that lying to manipulate them is their open and now exposed criminal MO. The truth almost always comes out. The truth is they don’t want the people to have easy access to news and facts that the government doesn’t control. Trust the government on net neutrality the same way you trusted them on Obamacare and watch freedom of speech be destroyed. History has repeatedly shown that controlling the press, now the internet, is the first thing a tyrant does, to make it easier for him to rule. The fact is “The truth shall set you free.”

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Pumpkins and Politicians

By Tom Rhodes, 11/6/2015

Boo! as in Boo Hoo, go cry someplace else. Leftists want to “get the money out of politics.” The fact is we don’t spend shit on politics, and the other fact is the media doesn’t care about it. What they media cares about is making money. Consider the facts. ABC's "World News Tonight" didn't air a single story on the midterm elections from June 11 to October 27, 2014. They did do lot’s of human interest stories. In fact Americans care more about Halloween parties than they do politics.

This year we spent $7,400,000,000 on Halloween, That’s over 7 Billion dollars, as in “B” Billions spent on candy, costumes, and pumpkins. That’s also more than was spent on the midterm elections including the PAC’s and evil corporations spending.



What does this mean. Simple, remember the old adage “Follow the Money.” There isn’t too much money in politics, people simply have different priorities. Corporations, Special Interests, Unions, and those who form PAC’s are interested in politics, the American People are interested in Vampires, Werewolves, Ghosts, Pumpkins, Candy, Parties, and what Taylor Swift is doing. The news covers reflects what people want and where they are willing to spend their money.

More money in history was spent on the midterm elections, but when more money is spent on Halloween than those elections we clearly see where the American People have put their priorities. It’s not in selecting leaders for our country, or having their voice heard. It’s in partying and escapism.

On average as a nation we spent $72 each on Halloween. I challenge ever Libertarian in Florida to forgo Haloween spending next year and send $72 to the LPF. The LPF put’s it’s money where its mouth is, and practices what it preaches. All politics is local, so half your donation will go to your local LP county affiliate. There were over 200 thousand people who voted for the LPF Tuesday, if they spent the same amount on the LPF as they did on Halloween every year, the LPF would have a 1.4 Million dollar annual budget, with that amount of money the LPF could and would win elections and make a difference. That much money would have made a huge difference.

If you are a libertarian and you spent more on Halloween or New Years Eve of St. Patrick’s Day to party and didn’t give to the LPF, you are a hypocrite, you don’t care about Liberty in our Lifetime. Put your money where your mouth is, CLICK HERE give up one night of partying, Halloween or New Years Eve or St. Patrick’s Day and send at least $72 to the LPF. If not You, Who? If not now, When?

You may choose to ignore politics and politicians, but they don’t ignore you. On average you’re spending $3000 per year more on healthcare because you ignored politics and politicians who passed Obamacare and are forcing you to spend more on health care. Not just this year, but every year, skip one of the many days we celebrate and spend that money on helping choose who represents and leads you in government. Or ignore politics and politicians, and party while your freedoms are slowly and methodically devoured by those who do pay attention to politics, and do put their money where their mouth is.

Follow the Money, your money, if you don’t voluntarily spend your money on politics, it’s your choice, what you are saying is that since you would rather buy pumpkins than politicians. OK that’s your choice, but because you would rather voluntarily spend your money that way it doesn’t take away the right of others like, unions, special interests, PAC’s, corporations put their money where their hearts are. You can’t bitch that there is too much money in politics when you spent more on pumpkins.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Prohibition - excues for big government and taking away our liberties.

By Tom Rhodes, repeat of 4/23/2009 post because it's relevant

Al Capone, Lucky Luciano, Dion O'Banion, "Bugs" Moran (AKA Jack "Legs" Diamond), and "Dutch" Schultz, "Pretty Boy" Floyd, "Babyface" Nelson, Elliot Ness, Speakeasy, revenuers, G-men, The Coton Club, The Godfather, Flappers, all everyday names, places, styles. and ideas from some of our most popular action movies - Gangster movies.


Chicago - when you hear the name of that city do you think of honesty, integrity, liberty, or do you think of gangsters, crooked politics, graft and greed?

The roaring 20's where alcohol consumption was illegal, this had the following results: alcohol related deaths rose dramatically; arrests for drunkenness and disorderly conduct increased 41 percent; arrests for drunk driving increased 81 percent; organized crime grew into an empire; disrespect for the law grew; and the per capita consumption of the prohibited substance (alcohol) increased dramatically.

People flagrantly violated the law, drinking more of the substance that was originally prohibited. The problems prohibition intended to solve, such as crime, grew worse and they never returned to their pre-prohibition levels. Not only was prohibition ineffective, it was also damaging to the people and society it was meant to help. Prohibition should not have gone on for the thirteen years it was allowed to damage society.

You would think that prohibition would enhance the difficulty of obtaining alcohol. The opposite was true, liquor was actually very easy to acquire. The bootlegging business was so immense that customers could easily obtain alcohol by simply walking down almost any street. Today it's easier for a teen to get a joint than a beer. Pot's available at high school, and the local dealer doesn't card you.

FBI statistics show that in 2007 Police arrested an estimated 872,720 persons for cannabis violations, more than ever recorded in the USA. That's only the ones the police caught, many more never get caught. Even our last 3 presidents have admitted to doing pot. Well Clinton didn't inhale, so he might not count.

My grandfather born in Italy, living in Detroit, never paid any taxes from 1922 'til 1931 when for health reasons he moved to St. Louis and got a different job. (He was told to get out of town, as an independent Winsor to Detroit boatman, some people from the Purple Gang advised him that his health was in danger if he remained in Detroit.) This means that although he earned enough money to fully pay for a house, and was never without a new Oldsmobile every two years since leaving his independent delivery business, he also never paid a dime in income taxes over that same period of time. The government lost significant revenue for the 13 years of Prohibition because of the number of people earning a living "off the books".

How many of our inner city entrepreneurs currently earning a living selling a product their neighbors and friends obviously want, but happens to be illegal, are paying income taxes on their income?

Pot is a gateway drug to harder drugs. This is the argument for keeping it illegal. Beer prior to prohibition was the drink of choice for most, but because beer had to be transported in large quantities, which became difficult, the price of beer went up and thus Americans began to drink less of it. Instead, they began to drink more hard liquor, which was more concentrated and easier to transport and thus less expensive. Because of prohibition, Americans began to drink more potent drinks and so became more drunk by drinking less. This sounds exactly like what's happened to the drug business, coke, crack, designer synthetic drugs, etc. all now available because there is more punch in smaller volume. In fact it can be argued that because of prohibition pot, and cocaine became more popular (they were still legal). Hence our war on drugs can be attributed to our failed war on demon alcohol.

Two good things did come from prohibition. Sweet mixed drinks, to cover the bad taste of bootleg liquer, it was mixed with sweet fruit juices to make it more palatable. Now we have fuzzy navels, bloody marys, Harvey Wallbangers, in fact an entire industry based on making hard to pallet strong liquors taste better. We also have the most popular and most watched sport in the nation due to prohibition. Nascar, started out with fast cars that were made from everyday transportation to out run government agents, and now it's watched by millions every weekend. And the drink most associated with Nascar... Beer, gotta love the irony.

Violence of the "Roaring 20's" was legendary. The violence of today’s drug gangs is just as legendary. There are as many modern gangster movies as those set in the 20's. When was the last time you heard a shooting over a "beer deal gone bad"? When was the last time you saw the door of a winery busted down on Cops? Doesn't happen, want to end violence related to gangs and drugs, then end drug prohibition. Because it's forced into the black market, the profits from drugs are extraordinarily large. A risk/profit analysis results in many people participating in illegal businesses. If there were not extraordinary risks, then there wouldn't be huge profits. The risks are there because drug suppliers, dealers, and purchasers can't avail themselves to the court system to settle disputes, they have to settle disputes themselves. This makes people who are willing to use violence and have violent skills employable, as these skills are necessary in the absence of being able to use a judiciary. End prohibition and the need for violence will disappear, just as it did in the alcohol business.

This is all common knowledge, in fact I've been collecting data like this forever from the net, for references just use Google on prohibition, gangsters, roaring 20's etc. all this and more is out there. We know that prohibition didn't work for alcohol, and was a total disaster. We know this yet we cling to our war on drugs. Why?

Short answer is money. $19 billion federal dollars spend on the war on drugs in 2007. People running law enforcement, prisons, courts, selling law enforcement equipment, etc. all depend on the money from the war on drugs for their livelihood. Most of these are government workers or contractors. They don't want to kill the goose that laid the golden egg. If we ended the war on drugs we would only need a fraction of our prisons, law enforcement officers, and government employees. The government is protecting it job and power, not its citizens.

The stupidity of the failed war on drugs has got to stop. More illegal drugs are used in the US than anywhere in the world, the violence associated with drugs being illegal in the world has created international cartels, unstable governments, and the death and destruction of hundreds of thousands of people. We know that prohibition leads to gangs, violence, crime, stronger chemicals, more addiction, and more use. Please work at ending prohibition, it doesn't work; all it does is give the government an excuse to further erode our liberty and freedom.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The CDC and Walter Tell

by Tom Rhodes, 10/14/2014

The Feds are rethinking Ebola strategy. This is a truly egregious WTF moment. The Hill reports: .

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday said it is starting to “rethink” its Ebola strategy after the first-ever US transmission of the virus put a "relatively large" number of healthcare workers at risk.

"We’re concerned, and unfortunately would not be surprised if we did see additional [Ebola] cases in healthcare workers who also provided care to the index patient," CDC Director Tom Frieden said.

A nurse at Texas Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas was diagnosed with Ebola over the weekend, raising questions about the procedures that were followed when treating Thomas Eric Duncan. The nurse’s infection “doesn’t change the fact that it's possible to take care of Ebola safely, but it does change, substantially, how we approach it,” Frieden said.

Consider that according to medical records his family provided to The Associated Press there were about 70 staff members at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital were involved in the care of Thomas Eric Duncan after he was hospitalized, including the now infected nurse, being treated for the same Ebola virus that killed the Liberian man who was visiting Dallas. Obvious the size of the medical team alone, shows the intensity of the efforts hospital put into trying to save Duncan's life. Where are we going to get enough health professionals to treat 10, or 100, or 10000 Duncan’s. And how are we going to treat the health care professionals once they get the disease.

Sharon Ekambaram the head of Doctors Without Borders in South Africa, noted at a press conference in Johannesburg Tuesday, that medical workers have received inadequate assistance from the international community. Doctors Without Borders reported that 9 of the 16 staff members infected with Ebola have died.

As a Libertarian I firmly stand on the belief that you have the right to travel where you wish. I also firmly believe that your right ends when it infringes upon the right of others. Your right to travel, can and should be curtailed if you are traveling from a known source of Ebola, your right to travel ended when it infringes upon my right to life. Your right to travel stops when you exercise that right in a manner that transmits deadly disease.

When the CDC says, "it's possible to take care of Ebola safely" what do they mean? Obviously the odds are currently very poor to actually do so. The CDC is playing the part of Hermann Gessler, demanding that US healthcare workers play the part of Walter Tell. Ever hear of Hermann Gessler, or Walter Tell? Reread the old Swiss legend of William Tell. Walter is William Tell’s son, and as the Swiss legend tells it had the apple shot off his head by dear old dad. Yes it is possible to shoot an apple off somebody’s head with a crossbow, but that doesn’t make it any less risky. Now imagine instead of William Tell, you have the same people who run the post office and the license bureau shooting the cross bow. Feel safer standing there with an apple on your head?

WTF are we doing letting anybody into the country who might have this deadly disease. The CDC is betting the life of every healthcare worker in the country and chancing an epidemic in the USA hoping that they might be able to treat Ebola safely. Their record indicates that they are not as good as William Tell. People are going to die, not in far off Africa, but right here in the USA. Because our government is too worried about being politically correct instead of protecting the life of the American People.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

The Effect of Cell Phones on Sig vs Coach and Dessert

The Effect of Cell Phones on Sig vs Coach and Dessert
By Tom Rhodes, 9/9/2014

Ever watch a commercial for Outback, or TGI Friday’s, Chili’s, Applebee’s etc. The common theme is people socializing, laughter, and enjoying each other’s company. Nothing brings people together and nurtures community, friendship and family like breaking bread. My wife and I often dine out with friends. Like all dinner conversations the topics are eclectic varied and the topics change over the span of a couple words. We are all active in lots of endeavors from church, work, social groups, and the various activities we share and activities we don’t share. As such it used to be easy to fill an evening with engaging conversation. Technology has changed that.

Rather, it is the self-centered abuse of technology that has changed that. We are discussing the permutations of fall foliage and its effect on fermentation and relative benefits to not only the production of hard cider but the social benefits of sharing such during a cool evening around a fire, and out of the blue, “Oh My God, did you read about So-&-So’s daughter, she just posted that she’s having a problem with her boyfriend’s neighbor’s dog?” Seems one of us was engaged with her cell phone and not the conversation. But it’s dinner with friends, so we go that way, difficult for my wife and I as we have no Idea who So and So is, and also a bit difficult for her significant other and me because talking about So-&-So’s daughter’s problem’s with her boyfriend’s neighbor’s dog is just gossip and neither of us have interest or desire to engage in third hand gossip.

The conversation drifts and gently changes several times. Dinner table conversation typically moves in odd directions. Consider the conversation had migrated to debate about Coach and Vera Bradly vs knockoffs, which morphed to an apt description by my wife on why guys just don’t understand why we (women) need a variety of purses and wallets, explaining in terms we mere men could understand she noted that we didn’t have just one gun, and soon the conversation has morphed into relative cost benefits of various calibers for women to carry in their purse vs size, weight, and kick, when we hear, “Oh My God, did you see the story about the bodies they found at the volcano in Japan.” Again a completely unengaged interjection of irrelevant and non-participatory dialog. Although an interesting current event, the topic was hardly germane to the conversation on the functionality of a Sig 238 fitting into the cell phone pocket of a Madison Satchel vs just leaving a Lady Smith in the bottom of Triple Zip Hipster.

Obviously not wanting to miss out on what happening with friends, family, and the world are a good thing. When it causes you to be disengaged with what’s going on with you, your friends and family, right where you’re at, you need to disengage from your smart phone it makes you look like an idiot.

Oh, if you’re wondering the general consensus was that the although a Sig 238 fits nicely in the cell pocket of the Madison and is well organized and orderly, it’s too hard to get out in a panic situation, so unless it’s a formal occasion, you’re better off with the Lady Smith in the bottom of a Triple Zip Hipster; and no even Moon Blooms won’t make a Triple Zip Hipster formal. Unplug and put the cell phone away until after dessert, it’s amazing what you can learn breaking bread with friends and family.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Gay Marriage – Greatest Tax Dodge Ever Invented

By Tom Rhodes, 10/8/2014

Forget the religious, moral, and cultural arguments for/against gay marriage. It has got to be the best thing to ever happen to cheating the government out of taxes ever conceived. Once the leftists amoral progressives get their way and polygamy is once again legal, the rich will be able to sell off assets at great profit and not pay any taxes.

Think about it. Say a modestly well off guy buys some land and builds a house that cost him $100K 20 years ago, today he can sell that house for $500K, but if he does he has to pay taxes on the $400K profit of the sale. At 15% that’s a $60,000 loss. Make a deal with the buyer, we’ll call that deal a prenup, so instead of a “buyer” we have a “spouse.” They get married, create a joint savings account, and put the spouse on the deed. Then divorce. As part of the of the divorce agreement, in accordance with the prenup, the guy “loses” his house to the spouse, but gets the $400K from their “joint” savings account. Presto change property sold money exchanged and the government gets zero tax dollars. Marriage license and divorce filing fees under $1K so for doing paperwork, the seller realized $59K more in the bank and the government didn’t get $60K in taxes.

Now expand that to a business owner, with a $500Million dollar sports franchise he bought for $800K 10 years ago, and you can see how hundreds of millions of dollars in profits and capital gains can be transferred with zero tax liability. Guy marries another guy, and now they are joint owners of the Charlotte Hornets, new spouse catches him in bed with of all things a “woman” messy public divorce, and the Hornets have a new owner, but because of prenup, half a Billion dollars in their “joint” account goes to the former owner. Imagine an employee given “shares” in the company, no taxes get paid until they are sold and gains are realized. Now that employee gets married, the marriage “fails” and they get a divorce, the employee has a “bad lawyer” and gets taken, and all the shares go to the spouse. The spouse, now ex, has not realized payment from the corporation and can sell the shares tax free as the spouse realized zero capital gains. You get the picture.

The unintended consequence to gay marriage is the rich get another tax dodge, this one bigger than ever. Once the logical extension of gay marriage is realized, legalized polygamy, it’s going to get real interesting. The possibilities for avoiding taxes and moving money will be endless. Unless of course you want to create laws that force a divorced woman to pay taxes on the assets she is already the rightful owner.

Through the use of legally enforceable prenuptial agreements and divorces massive amounts of profits will legally be transferred and generated without any tax liability. Some might say that using marriage to avoid taxes is immoral, but then whose definition of moral are you using, it’s not like gay marriage by thousands of years of tradition and the standard of virtually every religion is moral.

Marriage, has always been used as a political and monetary tool, arranged marriages have brought nations together. Liberal divorce laws along with gay marriage is going to bring a slew of political and monetary schemes never intended. Unlike traditional marriage which always, even in arranged marriages, had a strong moral component; the unintended consequence of legalizing gay marriage with already liberal divorce laws are going to be manifestly greater than anybody has considered. You think inversion is a bad of US tax laws, wait until you see what unintended consequences manifest with gay marriage.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

US Government Silences Political Speech

US Government Silences Political Speech
By Tom Rhodes, 9/23/2014

A U.S. Circuit Court has ruled that political speech is not protected. If those who don't approve of your speech threaten violence, the government has a right to silence you. The 9th U.S. Circuit court of Appeals now says preventing possible violence against you outweighs your right to free speech.

What the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled was that the government, in this case school officials of Live Oak High School, can prohibit students from wearing to school clothing featuring the American flag, because of threats made against those students, not because of any threats those students made.

Peacefully wearing a shirt with an American Flag to school because it might piss off criminal alien students can be punished by the government. That is sick. What the Court ruled is that the hecklers veto is legal, and not submitting to the threat of violence is illegal.

During the 2009 Cinco de Mayo celebration at Live Oak, school officials ordered the students to turn their shirts inside out or go home, apparently because Latino students at the school couldn't be blamed if they became incensed at the flag shirts and resorted to violence to express their outrage. A year later, during the 2010 Cinco de Mayo celebration, Mexican students confronted three American students wearing American flag shirts again. "Why are you wearing that? Do you not like Mexicans?" one asked. The Mexican students threatened violence. Rather than go after the criminal bullies threatening violence, the government officials took the easy and cowardly path of punishing the peaceful patriots? Instead of disciplinary action against the wrongdoers, they persecuted those who exercised free speech.

What this does is rewarded their thuggish behavior and incentivized further acts of violence. The court, by approving this horrendous decision, has now set a precedent. If you want to shut down people's speech, the best way to do it is to threaten or commit violent acts against the speaker. As Libertarians we are screwed. The NAP dooms us to lose.

That's right the Non-Aggression Principle, dooms us. The court has ruled that all any group needs to do to silence libertarian speech is to threaten to do us violence. To protect us and stop violence the Court has ruled that we can be silenced.

Nobody could argue that the students wearing American Flag clothing isn't political speech, especially on Cinco de Mayo, in a place with a large Latino population. The First Amendment doesn’t exist to protect politically popular and generally accepted speech, that speech needs no protection. The strongest protections of the First Amendment supposedly apply to political speech. Obviously the First Amendment is dead. If liberals were intellectually honest, they would join us in voicing disgust at this court ruling and petition the SCOTUS to overturn this horrible decision.

Next thing you know, the US will be like Canada and tell Christians they cannot share scripture if those passages might offend others to the point of provoking them to violence. Imagine in the USA the government making reading or preaching on Leviticus 18:22 illegal, because it may cause others to become violent. Substantively that situation only differs in content from what telling students they can’t where American Flag themed clothing.

We do have a choice, it’s a sick choice, but now a legal choice, we can credibly threaten statists promoting statism with violence, then use this court case as a precedent to silence leftist ideas. All we have to do is abandon the NAP.

Not going to Happen!!! As the Party of Principle, the Libertarian Party cannot and will not abandon the one thing we expect of Libertarians - acceptance of the Non-Aggression Principle. So soon expect the government to silence libertarian ideas using the excuse that such ideas publically expressed may upset a statist to the point they do violence, and preventing possible violence outweighs the right to free speech. It’s a sick end to the First Amendment and Liberty.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Our Culture Hides Rape

By Tom Rhodes, 9/19/2014

The latest finding from the CDC indicate that women rape men as often as men rape women. The so called “rape culture” is not a one way street. Feminism has dramatically skewed the rhetoric and is trivializing the heinous crime of rape.

I would never have thought this reasonable and rational article would have come from Time Magazine but it did. In an article titled CDC Rape Numbers are Misleading, Time notes the following:
For many feminists, questioning claims of rampant sexual violence in our society amounts to misogynist "rape denial." However, if the CDC figures are to be taken at face value, then we must also conclude that, far from being a product of patriarchal violence against women, "rape culture" is a two-way street, with plenty of female perpetrators and male victims.

How could that be? After all, very few men in the CDC study were classified as victims of rape: 1.7 percent in their lifetime, and too few for a reliable estimate in the past year. But these numbers refer only to men who have been forced into anal sex or made to perform oral sex on another male. Nearly 7 percent of men, however, reported that at some point in their lives, they were "made to penetrate" another person - usually in reference to vaginal intercourse, receiving oral sex, or performing oral sex on a woman. This was not classified as rape, but as "other sexual violence."

And now the real surprise: when asked about experiences in the last 12 months, men reported being "made to penetrate" - either by physical force or due to intoxication - at virtually the same rates as women reported rape (both 1.1 percent in

2010
, and 1.7 and 1.6 respectively in 2011).

In other words, if being made to penetrate someone was counted as rape - and why shouldn't it be? - then the headlines could have focused on a truly sensational CDC finding: that women rape men as often as men rape women.

Today’s feminist culture is trying to tell us that a girl getting drunk clubbing and regretting waking up, with a hangover, at a strange guy’s place, tired, naked and sore from a wild drunken tryst is just as much a rape as being drug off the street into a van, held down and forcibly penetrated and abused. The idea is that women are not responsible if they do something stupid while drunk or on drugs. Rather taking responsibility for their sobriety and actions, feminism dictates that the mere fact that a woman regrets the outcome of her actions is a valid reason for labeling the idiocy men and women do when drunk or high as some criminal crime against women. The female imperative of our feminized culture, concludes that that men being "made to penetrate" - either by physical force or due to intoxication, is not the same thing. If women want equality, they why do they not note and condemn the fact that women are just as guilty of raping men instead of trying to claim our society is misogynistic? Or note that when it comes to rape, by the definition they impose, society is equal?

The Libertarian Party of Florida’s Platform simple states: We support Equality Under the Law, and condemn any law that either rewards or punishes any individual based on race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or any other group identification. Clearly feminism today is not compatible with the being a Libertarian. Why do Feminists have a problem with Equality Under the Law? Their influence has pushed our government to abandon equality under the law. Why do they, and our government want laws to apply differently to men than women? Why do they and our government count crimes differently if committed by a woman than a man? Why do they and our government want the burden of proof to be different based on the sex of the accuser and/or victim?

The Time article ends in a refreshing use of rational logic and reason, rightly concluding “studies of sexual violence should use accurate and clear definitions of rape and sexual assault, rather than lump these criminal acts together with a wide range of unsavory but non-criminal scenarios of men - and women - behaving badly.”