Goodbye Campaign Finance Ceilings – Hello Corruption.

“Where enough money calls the tune, the general public will not be heard.” 
Justice Breyer, in his dissent on McCutcheon v. Federal Elections Commission
April 2, 2014.

It’s a sad day in America.  Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling on McCutcheon v. Federal Elections Commission.  The McCutcheon decision has essentially over-turned Buckley v. Valeo, 424 U. S. 1 (1976) (per curiam), a forty year ruling that imposed campaign contribution limits on aggregate dollar amounts (limits on the number of the total campaigns to which an individual may contribute) in an effort to reduce or limit political corruption.  Today’s ruling has effectively handed over all political power to the mega-rich and left our politicians even more susceptible to corruption, bribery, unbridled campaign and soft-money finance, and scandal. 

Money has truly drowned out the cries of the common citizenry. 

Almost more important than the majority opinion itself, is the dissenting opinion that issues a grave warning.  Justice Breyer wrote in his dissent that recent history has proven “There was an indisputable link between generous political donations and opportunity after opportunity to make one’s case directly to a Member of Congress.”  McCutcheon combined with the landmark Citizens United case have opened the door for the super-rich to have unlimited access at the expense of the working man. 

Justice Breyer’s dissent is judicial insight into the catastrophic end of our democracy.

Justice Breyer, with whom Justice Ginsburg, Justice Sotomayor, and Justice Kagan joined, penned the dissent, which, in my personal opinion is a landmark moment in time when we have four Supreme Court Justices that agree – the mega-wealthy have overrun the people, and corruption has indeed, taken hold of our political system in a way that will inevitably implode this nation.  The opinion’s excerpts below offer a prudent theme:  the Supreme Court should NOT be legislating from the bench – and the First Amendment should not be used as a divisive and cloaked weapon against the public to lure public servants into a world of corruption over justice.

Read the April 2, 2014 Opinion – Majority and Dissent – in its entirety here.

Justice Breyer, Dissenting.  Justice Ginsburg, Justice Sotomayor, and Justice Kagan joined.

“It understates the importance of protecting the political integrity of our governmental institutions. It creates a loophole that will allow a single individual to contribute millions of dollars to a political party or to a candidate’s campaign.  Taken together with Citizens United v. Federal Election Comm’n, 558 U. S. 310 (2010), today’s decision eviscerates our Nation’s campaign finance laws, leaving a remnant incapable of dealing with the grave problems of democratic legitimacy that those laws were intended to resolve.” And

What has this to do with corruption? It has everything to do with corruption. Corruption breaks the constitutionally necessary “chain of communication” between the people and their representatives.  It derails the essential speech-to-government-action tie. Where enough money calls the tune, the general public will not be heard. Insofar as corruption cuts the link between political thought and political action, a free marketplace of political ideas loses its point.  That is one reason why the Court has stressed the constitutional importance of Congress’ con­cern that a few large donations not drown out the voices of the many. See, e.g., Buckley, 424 U. S., at 26–27.” And,

“The “appearance of corruption” can make matters worse.  It can lead the public to believe that its efforts to communicate with its representatives or to help sway public opinion have little purpose.  And a cynical public can lose interest in political participation altogether.  See Nixon v. Shrink Missouri Government PAC, 528 U. S. 377, 390 (2000)”

Justice Breyer furthers that the Supreme Court should NOT be legislating from the bench:

“Determining whether anticorruption objectives justify a particular set of contribution limits requires answering empirically based questions, and applying significant discretion and judgment. To what ex­tent will unrestricted giving lead to corruption or its appearance? What forms will any such corruption take? To what extent will a lack of regulation undermine public confidence in the democratic system?  To what extent can regulation restore it? These kinds of questions, while not easily answered, are questions that Congress is far better suited to resolve than are judges.  Thus, while court review of contribution limits has been and should be “rigorous,” Buckley, 424 U. S., at 29, we have also recognized that “deference to legislative choice is warranted.” Beaumont, 539 U. S., at 155.  And that deference has taken account of facts and circumstances set forth in an evidentiary record.”

“The result, as I said at the outset, is a decision that substitutes judges’ understandings of how the political process works for the understanding of Congress; that fails to recognize the difference between influence resting upon public opinion and influence bought by money alone; that overturns key precedent; that creates huge loopholes in the law; and that undermines, perhaps devastates, what remains of campaign finance reform.  With respect, I dissent.”

On a personal note, I almost wept when reading this dissent; knowing fully that our politicians are enslaved by the corporations and mega-rich 1% that finance them. That never again will our public servants be in the position to fight for the everday working man.  Forty years of safeguards against political corruption have been erased with the swift swipe of the pen by Chief Justice Roberts in corroboration with Justices Scalia, Kennedy and Alito… and reluctantly, Justice Thomas.

God help us.

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Miranda Rights: You Have the Right to Remain Silent…. Well, sort of.

The U.S. Supreme Court has been very busy chipping away at our Fifth and Sixth Amendment Rights…
and US citizens should be VERY concerned.  

Dispelling the myth:  Pre-Miranda silence is not protected by the Constitution and may be construed as an admission of guilt during an investigation, says the U.S. Supreme Court.  Prosecutors can – and will – use your silence against you.

“You have the right to remain silent.”  There are few citizens in the United States with access to a television that haven’t heard that line being delivered by the heroic law enforcement officer arresting the suspects as they walk them off to the patrol car.  But what you may not know is that silence isn’t always golden.  Miranda Rights, established by a Supreme Court ruling in 1966 in order to preserve a defendant’s right to avoid self-incrimination has a few caveats that could be critical to your case should you ever find yourself facing criminal charges.

History of the Miranda Warning

On June 13, 1966, the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision on Miranda v. Arizona resulted in what we know today as “Miranda Rights”.  Ernesto Miranda, the defendant, was arrested and charged with robbery, kidnapping and rape in 1963. Without an attorney present, and without being informed of his rights, Miranda finally confessed to the crimes after hours of being interrogated by police officers, detectives and state attorneys all the while being cut off from the outside world.

Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren wrote the decision and stated, “… the prosecution may not use statements, whether exculpatory or inculpatory, stemming from custodial interrogation of the defendant unless it demonstrates the use of procedural safeguards effective to secure the privilege against self-incrimination. By custodial interrogation, we mean questioning initiated by law enforcement officers after a person has been taken into custody or otherwise deprived of his freedom of action in any significant way.” Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U. S. 436 (1966).

According to the U.S. Supreme Court’s almost paradoxical ruling in Salinas v. Texas, 133 S. Ct. 2174, 2178 (2013), however, silence may absolutely be used against you.  Silence in and of itself is not exercising the protection afforded under Miranda.  Quite the contrary:  In Salinas, pre-Miranda silence in lieu of answering questions may be interpreted by the State as admission of guilt and used as such evidence in a trial.  A suspect must first clearly state that he or she intends to invoke their Miranda rights and retain a lawyer immediately. 

You can absolutely be arrested without being Mirandized.

As iterated in my recent article for a law firm publication this week:

Once arrested, any statements coerced by law enforcement or made during interrogations prior to your Miranda Warning may be suppressed due to Fifth Amendment violations, but that is provided you clearly state that you understand your rights and want a lawyer present.  You must invoke your rights if you’re a suspect in a criminal investigation and retain an attorney immediately.

If you are arrested, the Miranda Warning serves to protect you from self-incrimination by giving you the “right to remain silent” under the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution, which offers the suspect the right to refuse “to be a witness against himself.”  The Miranda Warning also requires law enforcement to remind the defendant that he has a guaranteed Sixth Amendment right “to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.A defendant has the right to an attorney if facing criminal charges and if he cannot afford an attorney, a government-appointed attorney (public defender) will be provided.

Unlike what we often see on television, the Miranda Warning is not a get out of jail free card based on a technicality, and the defendant has a certain amount of responsibility in the process to ensure that the Miranda rights are properly exercised by him or her.  Miranda Warning is not required by law enforcement to make an initial arrest, nor is it required to issue a warrant or initiate interrogations.  Rather, Miranda is a procedural process that, over time, has become a little less defendant-friendly, and a lot more tilted toward law enforcement.

Ideally, upon you invoking your Miranda rights, law enforcement officers should immediately cease questioning during custodial interrogation. Edwards v. Arizona, 451 U. S. 477 (1981).  But what about the statements you may have made right before you were read Miranda?  Spontaneous admissions made prior to the reading of your Miranda Rights may be usedagainst you if they were voluntary and are considered admissible. U.S. v. Withorn, 204 F.3d 790, 796, 54 Fed. R. Evid. Serv. 255 (8th Cir. 2000).Mere silence during questioning is not enough to ensure the protection of your Fifth and Sixth and Fourteenth (due process) Amendment rights. Salinas v. Texas, 133 S. Ct. 2174, 2178 (2013).  If you have been arrested, you must acknowledge that you understand your rights, and then invoke them.  You must state clearly that you will not participate in questioning without your attorney present. Davis v. United States, 512 US 452 S. Ct. (1994).

You must state that you want an attorney immediately, and do not give any further comments to law enforcement under any circumstances.  By exercising your rights under Miranda, you are not being uncooperative – you are protecting yourself from self-incrimination and ensuring that your right to due process (fair treatment afforded to all citizens under the Constitution) during a criminal investigation is upheld.

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The Obama Administration: As Transparent as the Mississippi?

In celebration of Sunshine Week, the press is taking big digs at the current administration’s failures to meet those feel-good promises of transparency and access to information made to the public and the media, and the headlines are quite interesting:

  •  “AP’s White House staff: Press losing presidential access as Obama officials close doors” – Sam Kirkland, Associated Press, March 18, 2014;
  • “Sunshine week looking dark for Obama’s ‘most transparent administration in history’” – Mark Tapscott and Associated Press, Washington Examiner, March 20, 2014;
  • “Agencies Earn Poor Grades in FOIA Handling” – Elena Malykhina, Information Week, March 17, 2014;

And one of my personal favorite headlines this week:

  • “Obama’s most transparent presidency in history isn’t” – Andrew Malcolm, Investors.com, March 18, 2014.

There are over 145 immediately available articles on the refusal to ante-up public information by the federal government this week from both the big networks, syndicates and small independents.  Whether right- or left-winged or politically, um, neutral, there’s a show-choir-like unison in the voices of these writers and their networks, all belting out the hook of their big number:  We can’t get no (FOIA) satisfaction!

After spending several years in the military, I have a respect for the government’s desire to keep certain information out of the grubby little hands of the lowly civilian population.  For example, why does Joe the Plumber need to know about his tax dollars that are used in funding a “test” program to put women in male-styled combination covers (aka “man-hats”) at the whim of a civilian Navy official who obviously has an excellent fashion sense and just wants men and women to “look the same”?   Sure it cost millions of dollars and spent enough resources to feed a small island for a year.  But how would that knowledge even remotely benefit him?  That, my friends, is the definition of need-to-know.

This president, like most of his predecessors, is full of promises and falls short of fulfillment.  But why is it that we’re so darn hurt over these broken promises?  Sure, we fell for hope and change during his first term, but are we that naïve that when a politician lies we can’t seem to put our proverbial foot down?  Instead, we cry and whine…. and then demand more free stuff (wee!) as a parting gift and Band Aid until the next bruising.

Ever the fact finder, I jumped over to Obama’s website (www.whitehouse.gov) to see what he had to say, and this is what I found.  Ladies and Gentlemen, the words of the POTUS (or one of his many staff writers, anyway):

“Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies

SUBJECT:  Transparency and Open Government 

My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government.  We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration. Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government.

Government should be transparent.  Transparency promotes accountability and provides information for citizens about what their Government is doing.  Information maintained by the Federal Government is a national asset. My Administration will take appropriate action, consistent with law and policy, to disclose information rapidly in forms that the public can readily find and use. Executive departments and agencies should harness new technologies to put information about their operations and decisions online and readily available to the public. Executive departments and agencies should also solicit public feedback to identify information of greatest use to the public.”  – President Barack Obama  (read more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/TransparencyandOpenGovernment )

What we have here is a failure to communicate that is nowhere near a quick fix when facing the miles and miles of red tape we’ve forced them to create to cover their proverbial butts because when we don’t like something we take court action, or in recent events, we do absolutely nothing except throw a temper tantrum.  That red tape that didn’t start with Obama, and certainly won’t end with this administration.  Has Obama’s office failed to keep another promise?  Yes.  But the fact remains that this type of secrecy by the US government has been going on since the inception of well, the U.S. government.  We the People just feel more insulted now than ever when we’re told “No” because (enter favorite reality star here) is NEVER TOLD NO! 

But looking back, we haven’t changed, either.  We are as constant as the government we resent.  We are absentee voters with disinterest in anything that isn’t immediately in our back yards.  We are getting exactly the type of leadership we’ve asked for, folks. 

Do-nothing politicians are merely the product of do-nothing voters. 

 

 

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Chain Gang Charlie Crist is Dangerous for Minorities

Private prison profiteer Charlie Crist is running for Florida Governor AGAIN. This time, as a Democrat.

http://www.sunshinestatenews.com/story/charlie-crist-policies-failed-florida-minorities

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A PSA on PPA

Why Political Party Allegiance (PPA) is Destructive

Thomas Jefferson once said, “The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.”

How blindly and how eagerly do we hand over the reigns of our legislative affairs to either the Democratic Party or the Republican Party simply because we feel loyal to a label? How quickly we mistake the opinions and endorsements made by political leaders or news show commentators as even relatively close to researched, vetted, or verified.

I am a registered Republican. When I was 18 I registered to vote, excited and hopeful. I don’t really remember it, but I imagine that’s how I felt.

That was almost twenty years ago. I’ve never once voted straight down any party line, and am likely either Independent or Libertarian, though I’m not always sure myself and don’t really care to be a member of a club. I’m simply not willing to hand over my right to vote in the primaries because I don’t belong to a major party, so here I sit. Why?

Fear of Roe v. Wade being overturned. Distrust over programs like GW Bush’s “Healthy Marriage Initiative” spending millions on telling people how to be married. My opposition to the war on drugs. My support of stem cell research. My disgust with engagements in war efforts that are a wolf in sheep’s clothing designed to enrich already wealthy corporations at the expense of the lives of our men and women in uniform. Taxes, healthcare, spying, propaganda, welfare, jobs… all the lines are blurred by the two parties that take zealot-like positions to either the left or the right without care of consequence for the citizens left in the middle of the fray.

But what else can I expect? Their by laws are clear: “Elect Democrats” or “Elect Republicans”. The Democratic by laws don’t say, “Create, review and pass laws in the best interest of the country no matter their party affiliation.” Nor do the Rules of the Republican Party say “Stop irrational fighting over ideologies that are harmful to our citizens.”

Both parties, in their fight to differentiate themselves are just alike, taking corporate dollars for campaigns in the billions and only working three days a week. Getting paid to not do their jobs or balance budgets… its quite the scheme.

Oh, the news today! I don’t watch mainstream media, I scroll through snippets. Mainstream news, in my opinion, is poison for the soul, and I’m unsure what is worse: The networks’ own programming, or the commercials created by unidentified special interest groups formed to spread more propaganda?

I watch CSPAN so I can observe without commentary what is happening in the government. I don’t need a translator named Rachel, or Glenn, or whatever. News today isn’t journalism, it’s editorials presented as news, which is scary because people believe in them. You know who you are.

My blog, for instance, is a blatant subjective perspective on issues. It’s mine. I don’t present my opinions as fact, unless those are historical facts used to support my opinions and can be verified and substantiated, or are personal accounts, and then I prove it. But all in all, it’s my writing and my perspectives on various things from my MetroSectional. If I contribute to a publication, it’s based upon my own, not their, opinions for that piece. I just write, and research, and read, and write more.

But when a news company celebrity subjectively endorses a party or candidate, just as when a party or party leadership member endorses the same, we must remember that it’s all just that: it’s subjective.

News and sadly political party leadership today have become entertainment cloaked as journalism and lawmaking. Pseudo-anchormen and women with MSNBC, FOX or otherwise aren’t reporters, they’re entertaining people with their personal commentary, for ratings and viewers, and the less skeptical voter regurgitates their words like its truth and gospel. They’re live bloggers with a whole bunch of readership. Party Committee and Club leaders aren’t working for us, they’re fundraising for their Party-no matter who their candidate may be. They have to because their oath is to their party, not the people.

In a meeting recently, myself and few others voiced our concerns that the voter population, for the most part, have a trust in their parties that when the party leadership endorses a candidate, they’ve vetted him or her. Just as when those same voters turn on the news, they expect that the journalists verified facts. But it’s just not how things work any longer.

Political Party Allegiance (PPA) has become dangerous. Dangerous to the citizenry, and dangerous to our Constitution. Just because you vote doesn’t mean you’re doing your homework, which I highly advise. Meet your lawmakers. Research them and their policies. And most importantly… turn off the freaking television.

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Why Did imaconstitutionalist Compare Obama to Hitler?

My answer to questions about Friday’s post

I’ve received some questions about the speech comparison I made. I came across as callous, perhaps. Perhaps it’s necessary… or maybe it’s over the top. Maybe people focus so much on the horrific outcome of the concentration camps, they don’t realize how Hitler managed to rise to power with the support of a nation in the first place. How policies to ethnically cleanse were instated. How present-day policies echo some of history’s most uncomfortable truths. Here’s my answer.

The time frame of the referenced speech I used this week, was prior to those horrific murders which took place at Hitler’s direction.

Concentration camps had not yet been built. The Holocaust hadn’t happened yet.

The speech referenced was in February of 1933, when the President of Germany, Von Hindenburg had appointed the manipulative and charismatic Hitler as Chancellor of Germany, if for no other reason, than for his popularity. Though certainly Hitler was anti-Semitic, at that moment there had been no government or military efforts supporting the deaths of 6 million Jews, or remember, the 11 million other ethnicities that were killed including Slovs, Poles, Soviets, Romanies, Orthodox Christians, and Catholics, including their clergy. That slaughter came after Von Hindenburg’s death, and after Hitler’s instillation as Feuer.

Nationalism is not a disease singular to Hitler

Would people be as offended if I’d used Ghengis Kahn, Stalin, Hussein, Sung, Pol Pot, Mussolini, or Hirhito, all of whom are responsible for, by the end of their reigns, the deaths of millions for the sake of nationalism, too?

We don’t cringe when we discuss the colonization of America, which involved the slaughter of millions of Native Americans in the name of Christ and Country. I’d argue that Columbus was single-handedly responsible for the genocide of millions (estimated 9M) of indigenous peoples, yet we celebrate him every year, to my utter confusion, and glorify him as a great explorer, as he enslaved, raped and pillaged, virtually wiping out nations.

Maybe we just haven’t learned enough about them. Maybe we just have selective memory. Maybe it was just too long ago and those generations left behind don’t have the benefit of first-hand accounts anymore.

Hitler is the main evil empire character that we hold in our minds, and that our culture focuses on as the primary representation of government gone wrong. Time proximity and organizations that memorialize the atrocities ensure that we cannot forget, nor should we. Hollywood has failed to address the other characters in history that have made similar efforts to wipe out races for the sake of greed, genetics, government, religion, and nationalism to such an extent. So has our US education system and (core) curriculum failed to educate our children on nationalism and it’s baggage.

My post was short. It was a snippet.

It’s a very small speech comparison, showing just one excerpt, and at the moment of that speech, no one was dead by Hitlers hands (yet). Von Hindenburg was still President. Hitler was supported, even if reluctantly, by Catholics and Protestants alike, who would soon learn that they too, we’re unfit for Hitler’s sick idealism of racial purity. No one has died from the Affordable Care Act yet, either. We will have to wait that out.

Hitler’s reasoning for the Holocaust was based on Nationalism… and so are our President’s progressive idealisms.

Eugenics, the exceptionally BAD scientific theory upon which Hitler rationalized his ethnic cleansing, was fully supported by other governments. Sweden, for instance, had been using it as a matter of law, “democratically” sterilizing its citizens for over 2 decades. Mussolini outrightly supported it, albeit based more on on a cultural and societal means of correcting a nation, rather then ethnic, and then wiped out the Slovenis. So did Winston Churchill.

In the US we had laws upheld by the Supreme Court that permitted this medical form of ethnic or genetic cleansing. The states of Indiana, California, Virginia, why… we federally upheld these genetic cleansing laws until the 1960′s under the guise of humane sterilization and liberal progressivism.

Our US laws written to instate the eugenics program were literally used as Hitler’s legal outline of his ethnic cleansing, for God’s sake. All for the sake of nationalism.

Hitler implemented the sterilization program, not first on Jews, but his own race. In Mein Kampf, Hitler was clear about his belief, along with that of a number of so-called civilized countries including the US, France, Poland (irony), and others, that eugenics was a benefit to society: “The demand that defective people be prevented from propagating equally defective offspring is a demand of clearest reason and, if systematically executed, represents the most humane act of mankind. It will spare millions of unfortunates undeserved sufferings, and consequently will lead to a rising improvement of health as a whole.” Over 400,000 sterilizations through their national healthcare program took place between July 1933 and 1945. Furthermore, the implementation of the program was also first with the sterilization thousands of German children that were half-German/half- Franco African.

There’s more to learn in addition to the Holocaust

I’m not downplaying the Holocaust or deaths of the millions of people at all. But Hitler had a philosophy that has been commonplace for centuries, going back to the Ancient Greeks, and well-supported by our country’s judicial system until three decades after hose rise to power. He received some level of support in these efforts, if only quietly, by the countries that were fighting against him.

What I am doing is making clear that the Holocaust is not the only historically relevant talking point about Adolf Hitler. There is a lot to be learned from this historical character. A massive amount of understanding of how nationalism takes hold and how the citizens fall victim to it comes from studying post WWI Germany and Poland, and concurrent socio-economic policies in other countries.

Then, making a present day comparison shows us that Karl Marx was right about history repeating. It does.

Obama and Hitler share more than a line in a speech or broken promises. They’re both Keynesians.

I often laugh when I hear people call themselves Keynesian (or New Keynesian) economists, even. Keynes was a HUGE supporter of eugenics, and was the British Eugenics Society Director. So much for Krugman (NY Times economist writer and Ivy League professor) touting Obama’s fiscal policies. What a joke. An economist that claimed that the implementation of state-run eugenics was more important than the economic theory he devised is the father and foundation of our administration’s economic policies, and Hitler’s as well.

In his 1936 book entitled The General Theory Keynes wrote, “But above all, individualism if it can be purged of its defects and it’s abuses, is the best safeguard of personal liberty in the sense that, compared with any other system, it greatly widens the field for the exercise of personal choice.” In other words, if the state can weed out the not-good-enough citizens out of the gene pool, we can then be individuals.

Our current President’s entire social and economic policies (especially the Affordable Care Act, TANF, EPA policy and the Trade Adjustment Act) are based on Keynesian theory and the Keynes school of economics. So was Hitler’s recovery program. More power and reliance on government.

Nationalism: There is a reason I chose the comparison between Obama’s and Hitler’s speeches

Promises that are made and broken are commonplace with our politicians and leaders. So is our collective, selective memory.

We all clap our hands in excitement and practically begging for more welfare, and cheap or free, national healthcare (yippee!)… all of which are systems and programs designed by men who whole-heartedly believed in cleansing the gene pool. We must be dumb. I’d wager a bet that won’t be included in the core curriculum.

History has a tendency to make people feel angry and offended when their frame of reference is shaken up. Using Marx’s quote that “history repeats itself first as a tragedy, second as a farce” I must say I agree with him. We have become so focused on the final curtain of a historical event, we don’t look at the theory used by men like Hitler (or Obama) as support for those efforts.

Studying these individuals, I find myself looking at their motivations and the small moments that lead up to, and extent of control they were able to acquire, rather than only the final count of the atrocities. I look at the precursor conditions. Underlying reasons. There’s always a chain of events leading up to these occurrences.

Nazis, and other regimes similar throughout history, received at some point some level of support. Jews in Germany TRUSTED Von Hindenburg… yet the betrayal of his appointing Hitler (though mostly forced) and then his sudden death shortly thereafter, paved the way for Hitler’s genocidal plans. It wasn’t until the that the Enabling Act of 1933 was signed, and Hitler’s powers were actually instated, that the cleansing efforts began in earnest.

In order for Hitler to gain support, he had to take advantage of the fact that the people of Germany had been oppressed by terrible social and economic conditions resulting from the post WWI Versailles Treaty. 6 million unemployed and living on welfare, jobless and with total dependency on the state made Nazism easier to swallow. They were failing in industry, from lost territory and war efforts, and needed the government to take care of them. He seized the opportunity and took hold of a people disenfranchised by circumstances beyond their control. They needed hope.

The familiar ring of Nationalism

Sound familiar? It should. In many nations, harsh circumstances lead to unprecedented government control and power. We are proving no different, whether you find that statement offensive or not.

Hitler’s, and the leaders I’ve mentioned, purpose of killing was for the sake of nationalism. His irrational focus on Jews and many other races and religions was his method of achieving that nationalism, which ultimately failed because he was insane, out of support and resources, and lost his ability to manipulate. Sick? Yes. But nationalism has many forms and many characters and the people almost always fall prey to it because we want our country to take care of us.

The US has a history of similar, though less obvious, behavior as we make our way into nationalism. National healthcare. National education. National gun control. National unemployment insurance. National payments for trade. National marriage acts. National banking system…? Check. I’d say we are well on our way, if not already there.

Our kids won’t learn that we are removing individual rights for the sake of national cohesiveness in school. We trust our government for the most part and focus history lessons on the pain of slavery and the Holocaust, and reject that we have policies of imperialism and laws that paved the way for ethnic genocides. We glaze over the underlying reasoning for past and present day policies, perhaps because we just don’t know who the developers of those policies really were. It’s a lot to read, a lot to absorb, and difficult to accept. It’s a fine line to walk between self-awareness and self-loathing.

So, though I cannot possibly understand your family’s pain and loss if you lost family in the Holocaust at the hands of Hitler’s regime, I can say that we are all real and/or potential victims, or are related to those that have sustained loss, at the hands of government. My family with Mussolini. My best friend’s ancestors with the colonists and still today with the US government as we continue wiping out Native Americans with friendly fire.

Hitler was simply more blatant about how he went about it. It was more publicized and recent. He and his cohorts had militaristic and economic support from the citizens that needed the government to take care of them after years of social and economic failure. Our laws helped him reconcile his eugenics program. In Nuremberg trials, it’s said our country was their inspiration and was considered a humane way to cleanse the race.

How sad. Our US laws didn’t change until the mid-sixties, and we point our fingers at them? The hypocrisy is overwhelming

Our present day leaders have simply learned that in order to accomplish their end goal of nationalism, they need to be more subversive. More pleasant.

When we go online, and sign up for that awesome healthcare plan that was improperly supported by a SCOTUS judge whom legislated from the bench and changed the words in the documents because he felt he knew what Obama was really trying to say… well, that “tax” may end up being one of the greatest penalties of all. Then we can all sit back and wonder how Fascism, or Socialism, made its way into our country. I’d argue, though, that it already has… well before now. Obama has simply made liberal fascism easier to digest: with a handout and a smile.

Kennedy wasn’t kidding when he said, “Ask not what your country can do for you…” Seriously, you don’t want what it can, and will, do.

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New York City Begins Its Celebration of the End of the Bloomberg Regime

The Billionaire Monarch of “New Yorktopia” is Finally Moving Out

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, 108th Mayor of New York City elected in 2001, is finally stepping down this coming January, and for many people, that day can’t come soon enough.  The renegade dictator who has implemented policies without public approval (or knowledge) was just busted down by the New York Court of Appeals AGAIN this week, to the relief of citizens, especially the ever increasing homeless population as he was refusing access to shelters by thousands of homeless if they were “single” and not married or with dependents.

Bloomberg, who has a habit of changing political party allegiance like I change my shoes, is a Democrat.  No wait, he’s a Republican.  Nope.  He’s a so-called Independent.  Born in Massachusetts, Bloomberg’s policies and laws have crossed the line and invaded personal choice and freedom to a degree unimaginable by many, and realized by the citizens that will likely throw a party for his Bon Voyage.

Since his rise to power, Bloomberg has issued 448 Executive Orders.

Let’s take a little tour of Mr. Mayor’s policies (and nepotism) over the past twelve years:

  • 2002 – Bloomberg usurped control of the education system from the State of New York Board of Education, and has held complete control of the school system for over a decade.
  • 2003 – Bloomberg issued Executive Order 41:  EO41 protects the “rights” and “privacy” of illegal immigrants, and bans public services employees or otherwise from inquiring on their immigration status when they are seeking public assistance.  In other words, you don’t have to prove you’re a citizen to have the taxpayers’ dollars and support.  UNREAL.
  • 2003 – Bloomberg rolls out the NYC 311.  This is NYC’s “official website” for government information that consolidated every single agency.  Oh, it was also headed up by the appointed project manager:  Emma Bloomberg, his daughter.  That’s because there wasn’t one, single, non-billionaire heiress that was available to do the job.
  • 2003 – Bloomberg instated the smoking ban, removing millions of dollars from clubs and bars throughout the city and paving the way for international municipalities to further restrict smoking.
  • 2005 – Bloomberg increased the number of women’s toilets in public establishments.  Yes, he literally forced private businesses to add in additional toilets if they were going to be open to the public.  He called it the “Potty Parity” bill.  I would have called it the Potty Hilarity Bill.
  • 2006 – Bloomberg instates “surprise checks” and bans cell phones at all schools, leaving parents without the ability to reach or contact their latch-key kids in a dangerous city.  Bloomberg didn’t realize the worry this caused the average parent, since his daughter attended private school and had a nanny and a chauffeur.
  • 2007 – PLAN NYC, “Taxi of Tomorrow”: Bloomberg implemented a ban on all non-hybrid taxi cabs, putting the owner/operators in a position of massive expense.  After four years, and likely MILLIONS of tax dollars wasted, the Supreme Court overturned this law.  When he was overturned, he then threatened CEO Gene Friedman, the taxi cab king, with a promise that once Bloomberg was out of office, he was going to destroy Friedman’s business.  What?!?!
  • 2008 – Bloomberg bans trans-fats from all restaurants.  I actually agree with this legislature, since it’s a poison and is consumed unknowingly by the public.  The FDA seems to agree as well.
  • 2010 – The Salt Ban.  Another one of Mayor Bloomberg’s public health experiment, requiring national food companies to comply with one city’s mandates.
  • 2012 – The Soda Ban.  Pretending to fight “chronic disease” Bloomberg attempted to limit the sale of large, sugary softdrinks everywhere.  But, the New York Supreme and Appellate Courts let him know that he’d crossed the line.  Hello, Big Gulp.
  • 2013 – Tobacco Product Display Bill.  Not only can you not smoke in public….you shouldn’t be able to even look at packs of cigarettes in pubic, either.   Limiting consumers from seeing a legal product they intend to purchase?  Bloomberg has lost his rocker.
  • 2013 – Age Limit on Tobacco Purchases.  Yes, you can vote.  Yes, you can join the military.  Yes, you can buy porn.  NO, you can’t purchase cigarettes in NYC at 18 anymore.  You now must be 21 years old before you can buy cigarettes in NYC.

These are just a few examples of how Mayor Michael Bloomberg, King of the World, has run his dictatorship in his efforts to create
“New Yorktopia.” 

Though the Supreme Court has stepped in a few times to overturn his laws, I imagine there’s more legal backlash coming down the pike for the new elect, Bill de Blasio.

Enjoy that hot dog, Mike.

NYC - Empire State Building View

NYC – Empire State Building View

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