Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Helmer Reenberg: House Minority Leader Gerald Ford & NO District Attorney Jim Garrison in 1967

Source:The FreeState

Gerald Ford was already the House Minority Leader by the time these interviews were done. And was put on the Warren Commission by President Lyndon Johnson because he was trusted by Congressional Democrats and Republicans and seen as a responsible intelligent Republican. Who would seek the truth and not try to score political points from the investigation. But looking back now I think these conspiracy theories especially centering around Lee Harvey Oswald not being either the sole assassin, or the only person involved in the JFK assassination, doesn’t look so crazy fifty-years later. And I believe Jim Garrison looks like a more credible figure now. And that it looks possible, reasonable that someone other than Lee Harvey Oswald was behind the JFK assassination.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The O’Reilly Factor: Ethan Nadelmann & Bill O’Reilly Debate The War on Drugs

One of the reasons why the War on Drugs does not work. Is because its contradictory, because it tries to protect people from themselves. But then sends people to places jails and prisons that are worst for them than marijuana supposedly for their own good. A lot of government laws are reactive and contradictory. People get sanctioned after the fact. And the punishment for their supposed crime is worst in many cases than the actual crime itself. Like doing 3-5 years in prison for simply possessing, or selling marijuana.

Or selling marijuana, even to a sober competent adult who just happens to want marijuana. Americans by in large know that the War on Drugs simply does not work. They know why their taxes are high, because they are being forced to subsidize people who could take care of themselves on the outside. And it’s really just the big government Neoconservatives and paternalistic Progressives, who if they could would outlaw anything that is not healthy for people, who haven’t figured out the so-called War on Drugs doesn’t work and we need a new policy and policies in how we deal with narcotics in America.

Advocates for marijuana legalization and ending the so-called War on Drugs, are not calling for marijuana legalization, because they think that we should all get high. And always throw caution to the wind and that everyone should not only be on marijuana, but use it all the time. What we tend to say is that we’re talking about a drug that has similar side-effects as alcohol. And throwing people in jail for using a drug that has similar effects as alcohol, is not a good use of taxpayer resources. Especially when the economy is slow and government budgets are tight to begin with. And when marijuana legalization would be a benefit both to the economy and with tax revenue.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Movie Trailers: AC News: One For The Money (2011)

Source:The Daily Press 

When I first heard about and watched One For The Money, I thought Katherine Heigle was way too cute to play a bounty hunter. I don't care how tall she is and how great of a body she and she's tall and very sexy physically, but she comes off as a big kid. Like a baby-face teenage girl a lot of times and didn't look much older in this movie than she did in that 1998 Chucky movie she did. So in that way she was sort of perfect for this part, because the people she was trying to catch wouldn't take her seriously and she would perhaps be underestimated.

But then you watch the movie and see the scenes where Katherine Heigle is actually involved in bounty hunting and catching suspects and she handles herself very well and even tackles a guy running away from his home suspected I believe on drug dealing. So her persona and appearance of "aw, you're so cute and sweet, I have nothing to worry about with you", worked very well for her and her character because she did know what she was doing once she learned the ropes and handled herself very well as a bounty hunter.

What I was expecting from One For The Money when I finally saw it on demand this summer, was perhaps somewhat cheesy bad written movie that was mostly about a sexy, gorgeous baby-face goddess kicking ass in tight skinny jeans in boots. With some explosive action scenes and car chases and perhaps some humor in it. This movie has all of that, except the writing is much better and it is actually a very good action/comedy and fairly well-written and Katherine Heigle and Jason O'Mara the two main bounty hunters do a very good job in it.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Sam Seder: Federal Judge Blocks 6-Week Abortion Banning Bill

Source:The Majority Report- Pro-Choice on abortion rally. 
Source:The Daily Times

“A federal judge in North Dakota has issued a block on the country’s most restrictive abortion law, the “fetal heartbeat” ban, stating it is unconstitutional…

This clip from the Majority Report, live M-F at 12 noon EST and via daily podcast at:The Majority Report." 

I don’t love it, but I do find it amusing, even sadly so when I hear people who call themselves fiscal Conservatives, who claim government is too big and spends too much money and yet they spend taxpayer dollars on bills that if they don’t know that they’ll get thrown out on constitutional grounds, their lawyers at the very least are smart enough to know that. And yet taxpayers still have to pay for the costs of them writing their bills and paying for staff’s work and everything else. North Dakota and their anti-abortion bill, that bans abortion after six-weeks of pregnancy, is a perfect example of that.

If you can forget about the unconstitutionality and big government aspects of the bill, with the state stepping in to make health care decision for competent women, you can also dislike the bill for the waste of tax dollars that come with it. Money that could be used to pay for schools, roads, hospitals, law enforcement, jails, prisons, or lowering property taxes, is being spent to pass a bill that will eventually get thrown out. And that is before you add up the costs of what it will take to defend the unconstitutional law in the first place.

But the politics and politicians don’t take positions too many times to be consistent and accurate. But to meet short-term political goals. Which is why they’re not leaders, but sheep trapped in herds instead.

James Miller Center: 1980 State of The Union

Source:FRS FreeState

The Iranian Hostage Crisis, was the final nail in the Carter Presidency. Not so much the day that it happened, but how long it went on. Plus the fact that it was one more big blow that President Carter and the Democratic Party couldn’t afford controlling both the White House and Congress going into the 1980 general elections. Going up against a Republican Party, that was on the rebound and anxious to get back into power. If you look at President Carter’s poll numbers from the summer of 1979, one of the worst summers that America has ever gone through, at least economically with the energy shortages and everything else, President Carter was in the low thirties.

Plus, the economy was going back into recession and was dealing with high interest rates and inflation. And then the hostage crisis starts in November, right before Thanksgiving that year. But the country sort of came together around the situation, because we wanted our people back. Especially the families and President Carter acted so strongly and swiftly in response to the crisis. And his poll numbers shot back up as a result. Progressive Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy, challenges the President for the presidency in the winter of 1980. But Carter whips Senator Kennedy is most of the Democratic primaries. It wasn’t so much the Iranian Hostage Crisis that ruined the Carter Presidency, but how long that it went on.

That a third world country of twenty-five million people, could hold the world’s number one military and economic power hostage for an entire year. If the crisis was over by the spring of the 1980, President Carter probably does much better against Ronald Reagan and the fall and perhaps even beats him. Because the economy started rebounding as well. The Carter Administration, tried to end the crisis in the spring of 1980 with a rescue attempt. That failed with a helicopter crashing in the Iranian desert. Which just made the President look worst and weaker and essentially guaranteeing that the crisis would go on.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Liberty Pen: Milton Friedman: The Free Lunch Myth

Source:FreeState Now

The fact is there is no free lunch from government. Even if you are technically receiving services for free like in public assistance, that is for anyone working and gets paid to work, because anyone who works pays taxes to finance some government service. We just pay for these services in taxes, and not paying for them out-of-pocket, or with a credit card at a store. Or buying those products online. Anytime you hear a politician, or political candidate say that they can give you this service for free, or that government should provide these services for free, ask them how much it will cost you.

They’ll probably say free, but then you should say, “if this service will be free, how is it paid for?” And they’ll from this tax, or that tax, or creating a new tax. And then you should say directly and not as a question, “so this service won’t be free, because I’ll be paying for it in new taxes, or a new tax increase. Or this service will be cut to pay for this new service.” And the politician, or candidate might still say, “no. You’re not going to pay for this new program in taxes. Business’s will, or wealthy people will.” Well, they’s still be wrong. Because every time you increase the cost of doing business, the consumers end up paying for that new cost. Business’s, are for-profit and aren’t patriotic enough generally to say, “look, we know our government needs to do this and we’ll be happy to pay for it ourselves.” So, you increases taxes on business’s and the consumer will end pay for that new tax increase, or at least part of it.

Conky Joe: Video: NFL 1973-The Don Shula Show-Super Bowl 8-January 14, 1974

Source:The Daily Post

Obviously a Miami Dolphins local TV show with the so-called host of it not there to ask Head Coach Don Shula any tough or critical questions. But having said that, forget about the score of Super 8 between the Miami Dolphins and Minnesota Vikings, 23-7. The game looked like a 28-0 or 35-10 game, where one team could basically did everything they wanted to do on offense and dominate the first half. And play keep away in the second half, as well as shut down the other team’s offense in the first half at least. Because sometimes the final score in football games are misleading. Because you could have one team dominate the other really badly without the score indicating that. And making the game look a lot closer than it actually was. Which is what the Dolphins did, completely dominate the Vikings in Super Bowl 8. To the point that the Vikings were never actually in the football game with a real chance of winning. They Vikings fell behind early and never got into the game.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

MinisterMalcolm X: American-African Identity Politics- 1964 NY News Conference

This is part of the brilliance of Malcolm X which was his downright honesty and ability to tell the truth. That you can’t talk about racism around the world and leave the United States the number one superpower in the world and number one economic power in the world, out of the discussion. Malcolm X, was saying that you can’t leave America out of the human rights debate, when they were denying ten-percent or more of their population their human rights. The right to be treated equally under law. No better, or worst and not be denied their constitutional and human rights simply because of their race. Malcolm X, was brilliant to at least show he was willing to take the issues and problems with American racism and race relations to the United Nations, even if they are just a debating society. To let the world know about the problems with the African-American community.

As President John Kennedy said, “the question a hundred years later, is whether the world will exist half slave, or half free.” He was talking about the lack of freedom and human rights abuses, as well as oppression around the world. But he also brought that into the civil rights debate in 1963. Will America a hundred years later be a country where 10-12% of the country are essentially still slaves. Without the freedom to control their own lives. Because they aren’t allowed to go to the good schools and get the good jobs, because they are being denied those things through government force and oppression. Simply because of their race. This was the debate back in the 1960s. Can Americans be denied their basic constitutional and human rights simply because of their race.

What Malcolm X, was arguing in this press conference, was you can’t talk about human rights and abuses around the world and ignore the human rights abuses in your own country. He wanted the world to know about the human rights abuses and oppression in his own country. The best way for a large country, even a superpower like America, to encourage good behavior around the world, is to practice that behavior in your own country. The United States, gained a lot of credibility and became a lot more powerful as a superpower in the 1970s and ever since, because of the civil rights movement, debate and acts of the 1960s. It told the world that we were going to practice what we preach. And no longer hold ourselves to a lower standard than how we expect the rest of the world to behave.

Tom Woods: Video: War: Big Government's Best Friend

Source:The FreeState

War is big governments best friend. Because it gives Statists the ultimate excuse to limit individuals freedom. Because they can say, “look we are at war and we have to limit your freedom for your own good and for the country’s own good. So we can track down people who are working for the enemy. And we can see whose speaking for the other side. Who are the patriots and the traitors.” Which is an excuse that Authoritarians use in the Middle East like in Egypt and Syria. Instead of Neoconservatives saying that the 1960s, especially the Baby Boom Generation have ruined America especially in traditional America. Which they do anyway, they can appeal to America’s patriotic sense and roots. And say, “we’re at war and will always be at war until the enemy is defeated. And because of this, individual freedom, especially personal freedom needs to be limited. So we stamp out the enemy and separate the real Americans from the American traitors.”

ABC News: This Week: Senator Ted Cruz Discusses Opposition to President Obama's Newtown Gun Agenda

Source:FRS FreeState

Anytime you are real popular in your party even if you’ve only been office for a short period of time, like in U.S. Senator Ted Cruz’s case and you are a Governor or U.S. Senator, you have to at least consider running for President at that point. Because it might be the best shot that you get and you may never get another shot at it. And if you are a U.S. Senator or a Governor of a major state and you are popular, you would almost be silly not to consider running for President. Because of what you would be able to do for your state and country. Which is what Senator Cruz is doing right now. Which is why Senator Cruz, Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Rand Paul, are all looking at running for President in 2016. Because they may never get another opportunity like this again. And may have issues in the future that prevent them from ever running for President again.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Black & Right: Malcolm X: Democrats Are Chumps

Source:FRS FreeState 

The reason why there were so many Democratic members of Congress in the 1960s was because of the Dixiecrats the Southern Caucus in Congress who were famous for blocking civil rights legislation in the Senate and the African-Americans who could vote back then, were voting for more liberal or progressive Democrats and Republicans. Yes Republicans were competitive back then with African-Americans as well as in the Northeast. Because they weren’t controlled by the Religious-Right, or people who I today call Neo-Confederates. Who are still fighting the Civil War let alone the Culture War who back then were blocking civil rights legislation in Congress. Today are pushing these so-called Voter ID laws bills that are a solution in search of a problem. But are actually designed to prevent traditional Democrats like African-Americans, Latinos, young people from voting in swing states. So Republicans can stay in power there.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

AlterNet: Opinion: Sean McElwee: "The Case For Censoring Hate Speech": No Good Case

AlterNet: Opinion: Sean McElwee: The Case for Censoring Hate Speech

This post was originally posted at FRS FreeStates on WordPress

When you live in a liberal democracy take like America you should be aware that most of the things that you receive in life aren’t free. That you are one of today three-hundred twenty-million people and that we simply do not see things the same way. And all live in our different factions, or cultures, or cliques, however you want to put it. And what may sound like the truth to you, may sound like hate speech to someone else. But since we are a liberal democracy we all have the freedom of thought and speech. As long as we aren’t acting on these ideas that could physically hurt innocent people, or put them in danger.

The First Amendment like the Second Amendment or the Fourth Amendment and all our constitutional amendments are not absolute. Meaning they can be regulated, but not to the point that they limit individuals in how they live their own lives. For you can say whatever you want and think whatever you want. But you can’t order someone to be killed or physically assaulted without a price for that. You can own a gun in America, but you can’t use that gun to murder someone. We all have the right to privacy to protect law enforcement from breaking into our homes without just-cause. But if they have good reason to believe that someone’s health or life is in danger, they can break the door down to save that innocent person. And if they believe you are at fault, they can arrest you.

Since freedom is not free that means we have to put up with sometimes even things that we do not like, including speech. That you are free to live your own life. But so is everyone else whose not incarcerated. So they may do things or believe in things that may offend you and you have the right to disagree with them. And take another side, but you cannot stop them from what they are doing or what they believe in. Simply because you do not like what they believe in and what they said.

The First Amendment is a perfect example of that. As long as we aren’t inciting violence or threatening to hurt or kill innocent people. Or yelling fire in crowded spaces when that fire doesn’t exist, we are free to believe in and say what we think. Which is what makes our country a liberal democracy. Along with our other constitutional rights, as other countries are a little more statist and collectivist and put more authority and faith in the state over the individual.

As far as I’m concern if you do not believe in freedom of thought and speech and choice more broadly than just abortion, you are not a Liberal. You cannot be a Liberal if you do not believe in a high degree of personal freedom. When you put the state over the individual when it comes to personal freedom, you are not a Liberal, but more of a Statist. Even if you are pro-choice on abortion, marijuana and sexuality.

If your idea of liberalism is that it is the job of the state to protect people from having to see or hear things that may offend them, than you are not a Liberal. And sound more like a Religious-Conservative, or some other type of Statist, than you do a Liberal. And even if we were to outlaw hate speech, good luck with that with our first amendment, who would be the judge of what is and what isn’t hate speech. Partisan right and left-wing ideologues who see it as their job to eliminate speech they disagree with. While they are protecting the speech that they want. Which is what would happen in our current divided political system and culture.

Liberal democracy is all about freedom of speech, thought and expression. Again as long as we aren’t threatening to physically harm or kill people or inciting violence and yelling fire in public places. Which gives Americans the right to be, quite frankly assholes, as long as they aren’t physically threatening people. Which is why we have freedom of speech as well as hate crime laws. So people do not have the right to physically harm to kill others because they simply to not like them because they are bigots. One of the differences between living in a liberal democracy and some type of authoritarian state. Where you can be arrested for your own views.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Young Turks: Cenk Uygur: 'Harry Reid Full Of Cat Shit On Filibuster Nuclear Option'

Source:The Young Turks- No seriously, Mitch McConnell and Harry Reid are the leaders of the U.S. Senate. Stop laughing! LOL

Source:FreeState MD 

“… Reid said he is prepared to use the “nuclear option” should Republicans not agree to approve the seven nominees. Current rules require 67 votes to change Senate rules, but the Nevada senator’s move would allow for the change in Senate filibuster procedure with a simple majority of 51 votes.

‘I’m going to go to the floor on Tuesday and do what I need to do so this doesn’t happen anymore,’ Reid said about the potential blocking of nominees.”*

Cenk Uygur breaks it down.” 

I was watching a little of C-SPAN today before I went bike riding and went out and did what I needed to do. Why, because I’m a political junky who is interested in other things than the George Zimmerman case. And actually interested in important news that affects the country and that makes me un-American, then so be it.

C-SPAN was showing a debate in the U.S. Senate and for all of you Zimmerman trial junkies who are perhaps reading this blog by accident, thinking this was also about George Zimmerman, one turn off your TV. 

But C-SPAN is the network that covers the United States Congress and other current affairs events that are going on the country. And C-SPAN was showing an old Senate debate from 2005 when the then Senate Republican majority and the last one that they’ve had wanted to eliminate the filibuster on executive appointments. I was watching this old Senate debate and couldn’t, but help notice the hypocrisy on both sides.

If I had to guess there was more hypocrisy coming from the Republican side led by then Senate Assistant Leader Mitch McConnell. Who is now of course the Minority Leader a job he’s had since 2007 when Democrats took control of Congress. And if I had to bet there’s probably more hypocrisy coming from Senate Republicans than Democrats. But if this were some crazy contest it would be a nail biter. I mean it would be like trying to decide which is redder: or the red apple or tomato? How would you and besides why would you care?

Neither side has been very responsible here. But guess what, this is Congress and why would the Senate be responsible anyway, they don’t work for a living. Neither does the House of Representatives in too many cases as well. But the same people led by Mitch McConnell today Senator Orin Hatch and Senator Jeff Sessions all members of the Judiciary Committee and then Senate Leader Bill Frist who first proposed the so-called nuclear-option, are now saying this is a power grab by Senate Democrats and they’re the ones being unfair.

“Sure, if we do this, we’re acting in the best interest of our party, I mean country. But when the other side does it, it is a complete abuse of power and unconstitutional”. I mean seriously anyone who is actually familiar with Congress, still wondering why they have a ten-percent approval rating? And who are these ten-percent anyway? Any of them not living in mental hospitals and not in comas. Perhaps whoever does these polls, counts dead people. You know, the way they vote in Illinois, Louisiana and New Jersey.

Where do Congress people come up with these labels? “We’re saying the Democratic obstructionism is out of control. And we need to do away with the filibuster? Are now saying that: “The filibuster is a check on absolute power in America”. On the Democratic side back in 2005 led by then Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid who is now of course the Leader to go along with Senator Chuck Schumer who is also on the Judiciary Committee to go along with Senator Jack Reid, Senator Evan Bayh and others, those Democrats were saying eliminating the Senate filibuster would be a power grab.

“We’re saying that eliminating the filibuster would be an abuse of power and go against two-hundred years of Senate tradition and so-forth”. Wait, aren’t these Democrats supposed to be the Liberals, what do they care about tradition?

But now Senate Democrats are saying that: “The filibuster now represents ruling by minority. With one minority party in this case the Senate Republican Conference led by Mitch McConnell now running and having veto say on how the executive and judicial branches can now operate. When instead they are just supposed to be one voice and a minority voice at that”.

The point being that there’s enough hypocrisy and hypocritical people (to be nice) bullshit artists (to be accurate) here to form their own national club of bullshit artists. “We’re a club that creates and promotes bullshit across the country”. Apparently the agriculture sector is really struggling and then they need to create this national club, because they aren’t producing enough bullshit. Apparently Winnie the Bull is sick or something.

This club wouldn’t need any other members because all the available spaces would be filled by the United States Senate and an example of why ninety-percent of Americans dislike Congress. Because we have a lot of Senators like this. This whole Senate filibuster debate is all about “do what I say not what I do. Forget about my past record because this is what is important now and what I believe in”. They sound like your parents, right.

Which of course is the easiest near advantage that they can use against the other side and hit them as hard as they can with it until they lose power. Apparently unaware that will be used against them once they are out of power. Rather than doing what is best for the Senate and respecting the true role of the Senate as the upper chamber in Congress and its role in the Federal Government.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Dan Gillmor: Criticizing CNN: Goodbye to That

Source:FreeState Now 

Whatever happened to the Cable News Network which if not was the standard at least when it came to cable news if not TV news in general was a standard that had this mentality of "just the facts" without bias’ or trying to report news with political slants. But reporting exactly what’s going on in the world and what is important that they viewers need to know. About with intelligent professional analysts who explained what these things meant rather than trying to tell us what to think.

And lately CNN hasn’t been the Cable News Network, but more like the News Rating Network, perhaps the OMG Report, reporting on everything awesome and tabloid. Or the Everything Awesome Network, trying to compete with E and perhaps what is now called True TV.  "How can we make money and compete with FOX News and tabloid news networks". The George Zimmerman trial is a perfect example of that, but they had the Jodi Arias trial before that. And they seem to have this idea that most Americans aren’t that interested in hard news anymore. And rather know what Kim Kardashian or George Zimmerman had for lunch today. Rather than the turmoil in Egypt the largest country in Arabia experimenting with Democracy for the first time ever.
Is cable news a business? Of course it is, anything that’s done by companies are business’s. And of course CNN along with FNC, MSNBC, ABC News and CBS News have to be profitable in order to stay in business. But not at the expense of real journalism. And of course there’s a market for tabloid and other celebrity journalism. But those networks already exist and we already have a network that devotes its matinĂ©e programming to the American justice system. Actually we have several networks like True TV, the Criminal Investigation Network, Investigation Discovery and others. 
And these are the cable networks that should be covering tabloid and celebrity news , everything awesome or whatever the hell they want to call it. BUt not a network that advertises itself as a news network. That use to be the gold standard at least when it came to cable news, but now is looking to find itself and figure out who they want to be after losing viewers to FNC and MSNBC. Time Warner the parent company of CNN already has a cable network that advertises itself as knowing drama. What’s the TNT tagline, "we know drama" and that would be the place for CNN to broadcast the Zimmerman trial and other celebrity news stories. And leave CNN to be the home of hard news in America at least as it relates to cable TV. Where people go to find out what’s going in the world that’s important. 

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Associated Press: Egypt's Army Tightens Grip

Source:FRS FreeState

Political satirist George Carlin had this phrase that voters get who they vote for. So in Egypt’s case they elected with less than a majority a weak President and that’s what they got was a weak President who was unable to take on the military establishment and bring civilian rule to the country. Not as a dictator, but as democratically elected leader. And of course the question would’ve been how democratic would someone who represents the Muslim Brotherhood in a country without any democratic tradition would’ve been.  

But the good news is that Egypt will have another chance and hopefully elect for President someone with stronger democratic credentials who’ll assume power and govern Egypt in a responsible way. Which I believe should be the number one goal there with a real Parliament there and a real Constitution to hold the President and his administration accountable in a country of eighty million people with a lot of potential for growth. But I say that hopefully because Egypt doesn’t have much of a track record that indicates they are capable of moving forward.

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat
Source: U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy in 1960