How do you define capitalism? You guys always show up at the G20 summits, like the one currently hosted by Pittsburgh, and y'all always decry capitalism. All the anticapitalist rhetoric I hear is directed at big business. Do you oppose all capitalism, as Marxists do, from giant corporations to small-time street vendors? Or is your beef only with businesses that reach a certain size?
SDB Amendment 2 is an improved wording of the US Constitution's Amendment 2.
SDB Amendment 3 is silly: "Hanging as a form of capital punishment is permitted under the Constitution of the United States, provisions of Amendment Eight notwithstanding." It was a standard form of execution at the time of the Founders - and at the hands of Washington's army. Better to clarify the meaning of "cruel and unusual."
SDB Amendment 4 needs amending: "No court in the United States shall be guided by precedents established by courts in other nations or by international tribunals..." English common law (prior to 1776) is a part of our legitimate legal precedent.
SDB Amendment 7 (ban on carbon dioxide taxation) belongs in statute, not the Constitution.
I'm not too keen on SDB Amendment 8: "In lawsuits where lawyers work on contingency, the lawyers collectively may not receive a greater percentage of the award than any single one of the clients they represent." I don't approve of artificial price floors (or price ceilings, for that matter), and to be consistent this should not be spread to the legal profession. I would (via statute) require all lawyers to state their fees up front.
I agree totally with SDB Amendment 9: "It is double jeopardy for a defendant to be criminally tried in both State and Federal court for the same event..." Yes, even if it's OJ.
SDB Amendment 10 is interesting: "Neither the federal government nor any state or locality may pass any law or implement any policy which discriminates against or in favor of any person on the basis of race, gender, or national origin." First, note that this prohibits government discrimination, not private-sector. He either supports the right to private-sector discrimination (perhaps as the logical conclusion of the First Amendment right to assembly), or prefers to deal with it in statute.
That said...is all government discrimination on the basis of race, gender, and national origin bad? I would certainly not want gender-desegregated restrooms at the courthouse next time Dallas County calls me in for jury duty. Immigration law by its nature discriminates against national origin. Can anyone think of other legitimate loopholes for such an amendment?
Tell me this...how relevant would government discrimination be if the federal government hadn't ventured so far out of its constitutional bounds?
I've always been a Republican for the traditional principles that have been associated with the Republican party since I became a Republican, when I registered to vote. And that is limited government, individual opportunities, fiscal responsibility, and a strong national defense. So I think those principles have always been a part of the Republican party heritage. And I believe that I reflect those views and I haven't changed as a Republican. I think more that my party has changed.
She's right about the party changing. It won Congressional majorities in both houses on those principles, and then chickened out after 1995. On spending, elected GOP cowed to the Democrats from then on, the main reason why it doesn't have a majority anymore.
But the first part? Senator Snowe, you lie. I have seen your American Conservative Union rating. Your lifetime score is 47.88%, and your 2008 score of TWELVE PERCENT. That's one heck of a change.
And how does that $787 billion stimulus bill that you, Arlen Specter (still a Republican at the time) and Susan Collins voted for embody limited government and fiscal responsibility?
If we had a halfway ethical Senate, this bill would have done this in the wake of the avalanche of voter fraud cases. Voter fraud allegations elicit a yawn, but the Senate finally steps in when ACORN workers get caught on tape helping a couple posing as a pimp and prostitute evade the law.
Recommended by LGF, under the heading "The Truth Is Out There" are Quackwatch, a sort of Snopes for the medical industry, and Insurance Reform Watch, which fact-checks ObamaCare's proponents. Both are hosted by Dr. Stephen Barrett.
The basic problem is that while it's true that exercise burns calories and that you must burn calories to lose weight, exercise has another effect: it can stimulate hunger. That causes us to eat more, which in turn can negate the weight-loss benefits we just accrued. Exercise, in other words, isn't necessarily helping us lose weight. It may even be making it harder.
That doesn't mean that sloth is the dieting solution. Read the whole thing.
And if you're trying to lose weight, don't get your exercise tat the Texas State Fair.
Children shouldn't be taught that the president—any president—is a beloved paternal figure with a grand plan for everyone. (From the original lesson plan: "Students might think about: What specific job is he asking me to do? Is he asking anything of anyone else? Teachers? Principals? Parents? The American people?") Children should be taught the truth: that presidents are polarizing figures who are constantly dogged by controversy. That Americans don't always agree about proper public policy, and sometimes they disagree enough to do something as drastic as keeping their kids home from school. That politics is about conflict, not listening in unison while a friendly face on a TV screen dispenses instructions.
Read the whole thing.
And here's your next lesson (sorry, embedding is disabled for this video).
Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.
Why do we have a holiday dedicated to only one element of commerce? The "strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country" is dependent on five factors:
Liberty. Laws regarding commerce and property rights are relatively fair and consistent. Taxation levels, while far from ideal, are such that (except in a few areas) they do not choke out business startups and growth. The streets are free from warfare and from government pogroms.
Culture. Society generally encourages private-sector employment; in several African nations, by contrast, the college-educated gravitate heavily toward government jobs. The rate of crimes against person and property, except in various urban neighborhoods, is not so high that businesses are driven away.
Entrepreneurs. These are the people responsible for the organization of an entire company, the establishment of its entire product line, and the assumption of the risk inherent in the venture.
Investors. Businesses must be financed. Outside sources such as banking institutions and stockholders routinely invest in established businesses, and occasionally provide capital for startups. Investors assume some degree of risk.
Labor. Traditionally this term is used to signify all non-managerial positions within a company. I use it to refer to include all non-entrepreneurial positions in a company. The common usage of "labor" and "management" insinuates that managers (including entrepreneurs) don't really do anything, that their organizational duties isn't really "work." I use "entrepreneur" and "labor" to distinguish between those responsible for an entire company and those responsible for portions of it.
Happy Commerce Day! Drink a toast to the Bill of Rights, peaceful citizens, Bill Gates, Wall Street, and all your coworkers.
When The Democrats Opposed Presidential School Speeches
NewsBusters reports something vaguely similar to Obama's upcoming speech to the schools:
As Barack Obama prepares a nationwide broadcast to America's students next Tuesday, it has been revealed that Democrats complained in 1991 when then President George H. W. Bush broadcast a speech from a Northwest Washington junior high school.
In fact, the House Majority leader at the time, Dick Gephardt (D-Mo.), said "The Department of Education should not be producing paid political advertising for the president, it should be helping us to produce smarter students."
Link via Volokh conspirator Jim Lindgren, to whom I emailed these observations (his post has comments disabled):
I do note one key difference between that event and Obama's upcoming gig:
"Bush told students to write him to let him know how they were doing in school and to suggest ways to help achieve his national education goals — to increase the graduation rate, improve student competency and better prepare students for entering school."
Bush asked for students to contribute their policy ideas regarding universally supported goals specifically tied to education. Anyone think Obama will make such a gesture? He's never asked everyday adult citizens to turn in their suggestions.
Also, did Bush's Education Secretary send out detailed lesson plans revolving around the speech?
There's one detail missing from the article: did any students other than those at Alice Deal Junior High hear the live broadcast of Bush's address? It seems like Bush was delivering a speech to the nation at large and not exclusively to schoolchildren, as in Obama's case.
Ventura County Sheriff's Capt. Frank O'Hanlon says about 100 people demonstrating in favor of health care reforms rallied Wednesday night on a street corner. One protester walked across the street to confront about 25 counter-demonstrators.
O'Hanlon says the man got into an argument and fist fight, during which he bit off the left pinky of a 65-year-old man who opposed health care reform.
A hospital spokeswoman says the man lost half the finger, but doctors reattached it and he was sent home the same night.
There is one presumptuous statement here, that the victim "opposed health care reform." We don't know that he opposes reform. We know that he opposes Obama's "reform."
President Obama is planning an address to all public school students on September 8. Here's the Department of Education classroom instruction guidelines relating to the event, for pre-K through 6, and for grades 7-12.
Read both links carefully. Note that the higher grade set is not asked to critique Obama's message - students are asked to discern his message, but not to assess its merits.
This reeks. Especially knowing that with Obama every speech is a campaign speech.
Regarding the post directly below, how could I manage to juxtapose Massachusetts and New York?
The two states are (to someone who doesn't live in that region) politically indistinguishable.
New York has such lax residency requirements for running for office that it's halfway conceivable that its governor could appoint an out-of-stater to fill a Senate seat. "Rent an apartment in Upper Manhattan for a few weeks, and the job is yours by the end of September."
The name Kennedy is associated with both states' recent Senate vacancies - a live Kennedy, in New York's case.
I vaguely recall Rush Limbaugh speaking more than once about having to go through some effort to prove to some New York State bureaucracy that he is no longer a resident of that state and thus no longer on its tax rolls. The bureaucracy was confused by the show's intro (recalled from memory): "From sunny Florida, via New York City." (This was years after he moved to the Sunshine State.) New York has an actual financial incentive to lure Rush back, which leads to this:
On politics, the subject that dominates my mind is the same that dominates many others: the vicious, relentless, ravenous, boundless, larcenous greed of American government.
I would have posted this earlier, but I don't blog at work.