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Free Citizen

This writer espouses individual liberty, free markets, and limited government.

Location: Jackson, Mississippi, United States

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Greater Choice For Mississippi Voters

Nonpartisan elections are popularly called "open primaries" in Mississippi. In such an election, there are no party primaries, and all candidates, including independents, run in the same election. If no one gets 50-plus percent in the first round, the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, meet in a runoff.

The Voter Choice Plan would provide greater choice for our state's voters by changing to nonpartisan local (county and municipal) elections. It's unlikely that the legislature would enact this plan, but it could also be accomplished through a ballot initiative. Mississippi has a tough initiative process; however, if we could get such an initiative on the ballot, I believe that our citizens would pass it overwhelmingly.

Most of our municipal officials are elected in the spring of the year following presidential elections; our state and county officials are elected in the year before presidential elections.

Let’s say that the Voter Choice Plan is in effect for our 2011 state and county elections. Here’s how those elections would work:

First Tuesday in August: the parties would hold their primaries for state offices, and each voter would choose either the Democratic or the Republican ballot.

August, three weeks later: the parties would hold their runoff (or second) primaries for state offices. ALL the candidates for COUNTY offices would also be listed on both the Republican and the Democratic ballots. In addition, there would be a separate nonpartisan ballot listing only the candidates for COUNTY offices.

Anyone who had voted in either the Democratic primary or the Republican primary would have to stick with the same party in the second primary-- OR such a voter would have the option of taking the nonpartisan ballot. Anyone who had not voted in a party primary would have their choice of the Democratic ballot, the Republican ballot, OR the nonpartisan ballot.

First Tuesday in November: ALL voters, to be sure, receive the same ballot in the general election. For each state office, each party’s nominee would be listed, along with any independent candidates. For each county office for which a runoff was necessary, the top two vote-getters from August would be listed.

The Voter Choice Plan would increase the turnout for the party runoff (or second) primaries for state offices, since ALL the candidates for county offices would also be on the ballots at that time. There would never be more than two rounds of voting for any county office, and no county official would ever again be elected with less than 50 percent of the vote.

This plan would also eliminate two situations that have recurred in Mississippi over the years, and which have limited voters' choices. The first transpires when all or most of the candidates for county offices run in one party's primary. If a voter votes in the other party's primary, he misses out on choosing his county officials. In 2007, for example, all of the candidates for county offices in Hinds County ran in the Democratic primary. And in Rankin County, almost all of the candidates for county offices ran in the Republican primary.

The other situation involves our municipal elections: All or most of the candidates for mayor run in one party's primary, while all of the candidates for council member run in the other party's primary. Thus residents of those wards or districts can vote for mayor OR council member, but not both (in 2005, Hattiesburg and Tupelo were two cities in which this happened).

Why do we need party primaries for local offices anyway?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

William F. Buckley Jr. (1925-2008)

Mr. Buckley said that the Iraq War was a mistake.

NEW YORK (AP) - William F. Buckley Jr., the erudite Ivy Leaguer and conservative herald who showered huge and scornful words on liberalism as he observed, abetted and cheered on the right's post-World War II rise from the fringes to the White House, died Wednesday. He was 82.

His assistant Linda Bridges said Buckley was found dead by his cook at his home in Stamford, Conn. The cause of death was unknown, but he had been ill with emphysema, she said.

Editor, columnist, novelist, debater, TV talk show star of "Firing Line," harpsichordist, transoceanic sailor and even a good-natured loser in a New York mayor's race, Buckley worked at a daunting pace, taking as little as 20 minutes to write a column for his magazine, the National Review.

Yet on the platform, he was all handsome, reptilian languor, flexing his imposing vocabulary ever so slowly, accenting each point with an arched brow or rolling tongue and savoring an opponent's discomfort with wide-eyed glee.

"I am, I fully grant, a phenomenon, but not because of any speed in composition," he wrote in The New York Times Book Review in 1986. "I asked myself the other day, `Who else, on so many issues, has been so right so much of the time?' I couldn't think of anyone."

After hearing the news, President Bush remembered Buckley as one of America's finest writers and thinkers.

"He influenced a lot of people, including me," Bush said in the Oval Office. "He captured the imagination of a lot of people."

Bush said he talked with Buckley's son, Christopher, on the phone to express condolences. "Christopher said his dad died at his desk," Bush said. "He said his dad died a peaceful death."

Buckley had for years been withdrawing from public life, starting in 1990 when he stepped down as top editor of the National Review. In December 1999, he closed down "Firing Line" after a 23-year run of guests ranging from Richard Nixon to Allen Ginsberg. "You've got to end sometime and I'd just as soon not die onstage," he told the audience.

"For people of my generation, Bill Buckley was...

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Hillary-Hussein-McCain Axis Of Evil

You're no doubt familiar with Ann Coulter... but have you read this brilliant woman?

Ms. Mercer seems to think that Obama-nation will be our next president.

by Ilana Mercer

So what do I think of the next president? I didn't like his predecessor's "New New Deal," so why would I like Barack Hussein Obama's Great Great Society?

H. L. Mencken called elections "a sort of advance auction sale of stolen goods." Henry Hazlitt said that "government has nothing to give to anybody that it doesn't first take from somebody else." But while robbing Peter to pay Paul is a philosophical given to the clowns competing for the commander in chief's crown, it's really much worse than that.

The nation's treasury is empty. Right now, and for the foreseeable future, the three musketeers plan on a whole lot of deficit spending. To keep running up debt on an account that is not yours is fraud by any other name. It's manifestly clear how close on the unconstitutional continuum Hillary, Hussein and McCain stand.

Benjamin Constant (1767-1830), in his treatise on the "Principles of Politics," defined liberty as the people's right to "enjoy a boundless freedom in the use of their property and the exercise of their labor, as long as in disposing of their property or exercising their labor they do not harm others who have the same rights."

This writer holds that the sole role of a legitimate government is to protect only the inalienable rights to life, liberty and property, and the pursuit of happiness. Why life, liberty and property, and not housing, food, education, health care, child benefits, emotional well-being, enriching employment, adequate vacations, ad infinitum, as promised variously by the remaining (viable) presidential contenders? Because the former impose no obligations on other free individuals; the latter enslave some in the service of others.

The Constitution is with Constant (and Mercer), with some variations. All the "giving" Hussein and Hillary plan to do is extra-constitutional. Obama's Manna From Heaven Health Care Plan and Hillary's Cuba Care – these are not inalienable rights.

The welfare clause, "and Congress will have the power … to provide for the general welfare" – Article I, Section 8 – our overlords have taken to mean that government can pick The People's pocketbooks for any possible project, even though the general clause is followed by a detailed enumeration of the limited powers so delegated.

Asks historian Thomas E. Woods...

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Biggest Ponzi Scheme In History

"How could the Founders and Framers of our Constitution have been so short-sighted in not providing for all our retirement benefits? Why, there is not a single word on it in the Constitution or the Federalist Papers. Maybe the Anti-Federalists mentioned it? How could they have been so uniformly financially inept that they didn’t even realize how desperately we needed income taxes, paper money and standing armies?"

by Bill Huff

Some time ago I visited the Social Security Website just to see what was going on in their little socialistic heads, and came across an "explanation" of how Social Security was NOT a "Ponzi Scheme," embellished with some of the most convoluted govspeak one could ever imagine.

It seemed to be written by a true believer. But as I read it again and again I was impressed with how they were inadvertently making the case for the opposition. The more I read it, the more I wanted every American to read it – and think about it. I shared it with a few friends and they all agreed. The Social Security Administration was exposing itself as a Ponzi Scheme – albeit a really Huge Ponzi Scheme. At the bottom their "explanation" proved nothing more than that their Ponzi Scheme was quite legit simply because it had the sanction of government.

The government robs Peter to pay Paul to sustain social security. This is not really disputed. It is just euphemized ad nauseam. Lawfully speaking you give them written permission to rob you to pay Paul. Of course you are not allowed to do anything like robbing Peter on your own behalf, because that would be a crime. But Socialism is a criminal system of economics. The sanction of government does not render a crime victimless or without culpability. It can sometimes mask the crime and delay the results. But sooner or later it’s Judgment Day!

Once again we refer to [Frederic] Bastiat:

"But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.

"Then abolish this law without delay, for it is not only an evil itself, but also it is a fertile source for further evils because it invites reprisals. If such a law – which may be an isolated case – is not abolished immediately, it will spread, multiply, and develop into a system [Social Security is a government institution but that cannot make it lawful]." – From The Law by Frédéric Bastiat

The reason this article is not a letter addressed to the Social Security Administration is that...Read more>>>

Thursday, February 21, 2008

"A Necessary Evil"

"Society in every state is a blessing, but government, even in
its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an
intolerable one; for when we suffer or are exposed to the same
miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country
without government, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that
we furnish the means by which we suffer."

-- Thomas Paine (Common Sense, 1776)

Reference: Thomas Paine: Collected Writings , Foner ed., Library
of America (6)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

And Then There Were Two

The special election for the U. S. Senate seat formerly (1989-2007) occupied by Trent Lott will be held on November 4, the same day as the general election. Mississippi's special elections are nonpartisan: all candidates run in the same election, with 50-plus percent required to win.

The Republican Roger Wicker was elevated by Gov. Haley Barbour from the U. S. House, where he had served the First District for 13 years, to the Senate seat. Two Democrats, former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove and former Congressman Ronnie Shows, had qualified to run against Wicker in the special election. On Tuesday Shows announced that he was dropping out and endorsing Musgrove. This makes it a two-man race, Wicker versus Musgrove, and eliminates the possibility of a runoff.

David Hampton, editorial director of The Clarion-Ledger, may be engaging in a little wishful thinking when he blogs that this development helps Musgrove’s chances. Mississippi has voted Republican in every presidential election since 1980, and we have some 300,000 more voters in the presidential race than in the previous year’s governor’s race. Most of those additional voters vote Republican and could be expected to lean toward Wicker.

Wicker has the advantage of incumbency as well as his 13 years experience in Congress. All of Musgrove’s experience, in contrast, has been in state politics.

Republican Sen. Thad Cochran will also be on the November ballot, giving Wicker the benefit of his coattails as well as those of the Republican presidential nominee. In addition, Wicker will have Barbour's formidable organization behind him.

No Mississippi Democrat has been elected U. S. senator since John Stennis last won in 1982*, and no incumbent Mississippi senator has been defeated since 1942**.

The main thing Shows could have accomplished was forcing a runoff.

It's worth noting, too, that in his successful 1999 race for governor, Musgrove received less than 50 percent of the popular vote. In 2003, to be sure, he was defeated for re-election by Barbour.

Mike Moore, attorney general from 1988 to 2004, who most observers considered the strongest potential Democratic Senate candidate, chose not to run.

* Stennis's Republican opponent that year was Haley Barbour.

** James Eastland of Doddsville beat Sen. Wall Doxey of Holly Springs. Doxey had won the September 1941 special election that followed the death of Sen. Pat Harrison of Gulfport, who was the Senate president pro tem.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Webster Defines Education

Noah Webster, remembered for his dictionary, was one of the Founding Fathers. "Liberal," of course, had a different meaning back then.

"It is an object of vast magnitude that systems of education should
be adopted and pursued which may not only diffuse a knowledge
of the sciences but may implant in the minds of the American
youth the principles of virtue and of liberty and inspire them
with just and liberal ideas of government and with an inviolable
attachment to their own country."

-- Noah Webster (On Education of Youth in America, 1790)

Reference: The Learning of Liberty, Prangle and Prangle (126);
original Noah Webster: Schoolmaster to America, Harry Warfel (42)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Calm Sun, Cold Earth

The environmental wackos are increasingly using "climate change" instead of "global warming" to describe their Big Lie. This way, if the Earth should actually turn colder, they won't have to change their terminology again.

by Alan Caruba

I can understand why people believe that global warming is real and that all the things Greens say are true. One cannot read a newspaper or magazine, turn on the television or radio, without getting the Green message.

Since switching their message in the 1970s that an Ice Age was coming to the complete fiction of a massive, dramatic global warming due to greenhouse gases, the Greens have been able to influence policy at the international and national level. They have been utterly relentless, a modern version of the Mongols on horseback who swept out of the East to conquer everything before them until they reached the gates of Europe. These days the Greens have long since conquered Europe.

One thing alone stands against the Greens. The science does not support them. Their sense of moral superiority, their contempt for all things modern, their resistance to all forms of energy except the weakest—wind and solar, and at the very heart of the Greens’ message is a contempt and hatred for the human race.

Humans have come to dominate life on Earth because we know how to adapt to the planet. We know how to use its minerals, the riches of plant life, the domestication of its animals, and its reserves of energy in the form of coal, oil, natural gas, and nuclear fission, to create its great cities, its farms and ranches, and everything that passes for modern civilization.

Long ago humans conquered the continents of the Earth and its great oceans to spread everywhere. Humans now fly between continents in hours. Everywhere on the face of the Earth humans now communicate with one another via the Internet.

For billions of years the Earth existed without humans and it will do so when we cease to inhabit it. As a species, we are newcomers, but like every other species—95% of which are extinct—we are subject to forces far greater than anything we possess.

To suggest that humans actually cause climate change is such idiocy that the Earth itself reminds us daily of our vulnerabilities. The news is full of tornadoes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, blizzards, earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, and wildfires.

On February 7, Investors Business Daily had an editorial titled “The Sun Also Sets” in which it cited the views of Kenneth Tapping, a solar researcher and project director for Canada’s National Research Council. In essence, Tapping wants people to know that solar activity such as sunspots, i.e., magnetic storms, “has been disturbingly quiet.”

It’s useful to know that global temperatures...

The Faith-Based Initiative is a Trojan Horse

It has been astonishing to me that so little has been said or written about the folly of President Bush's so-called Faith-based Initiative. Accepting government money, of course, is corrupting to the recipient, as it invites government control. Even Pat Robertson received a $500 million handout for his organization, which is in the same vein as his endorsement of Rudy Giuliani for president.

Just imagine what a Democratic president, in concert with a Democratic Congress, will do with this program. That will be almost as high on their agenda as socializing our healthcare system.

by Tom DeWeese

In... The DeWeese Report I warned that the Bush administration's Faith-based Initiative (S.476) was misguided and would not achieve its stated goal to use private organizations and private charitable programs as a means to cut the federal budget and return "caring" to its proper place in the private sector.

It's a noble idea and, if it had a chance of working, I said I would be the first to endorse the program with banner headlines. In fact, if the program had been designed to simply roll back federal regulations, making it easier for private charity groups to help the needy, the initiative would have been landmark legislation.

The problem is that the program is designed to give federal funds to private organizations. I warned that such a provision would be used as a "Trojan Horse" to allow federal restrictions and guidelines on federal hiring practices and separation of church and state to literally separate faith-based groups from their very roots. For the almighty federal dollar, I warned, faith-based groups would necessarily become little more than public agencies.

And so it begins. As Congress began to work on spending bills to fund the program, the Left showed its predictable dark side. Rep. Chet Edwards of Texas quickly crafted an amendment to the spending bill that would ensure none of the funds appropriated in the bill would go to any group that "discriminates" in job hiring based on religion. The measure was defeated, but it is a harbinger of what's to come.

Consider what such hiring restrictions would mean to a faith-based group running a soup kitchen. A Catholic church would have to hire those outside the faith to run the operation which means it would no longer be a Catholic charity operation. It would become just another federally-run soup kitchen.

Rep. Edwards used a different, but more illuminating, example as he said allowing "religious hiring rights" as called for by the White House, where faiths could hire the faithful free of federal harassment, means Congress would "legalize racial discrimination in this country." Edwards offered an example of a Jewish or Catholic organization refusing to hire a black Southern Baptist. Rep. Patrick Kennedy of Rhode Island warned that allowing faith-based groups to hire their own with federal funds would take the United States down "a slow road" to the theocracy of Iran.

It's astounding that the White House and Congressional Republicans could even...Keep reading>>>

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Conservatism Is Dead: Long Live Conservatism?

"I'm a revolutionary.

"I don't want to preserve the status quo, I want to overthrow it. I want to pull the statist weeds up by the roots and burn them in freedom's fire, just like our Founding Fathers did. Do you think they were conservatives? Conservatives don't start revolutions; they simply make sure their shackles are made no heavier.

"Political victory rests on cultural victory, and changing the culture starts with changing our mentality. We have only two choices: We can be revolutionary.

"Or we can be wrong."

by Selwyn Duke

It seems like just yesterday that many were reading liberalism's epitaph. After the Reagan years, Republican Revolution of 1994, retreat of the gun-control hordes after Al Gore's 2000 defeat and George W. Bush's two successful presidential runs, many thought conservatism was carrying the day.

Ah, if only.

We might ask: With conservatives like President Bush and many of the other Republicans, who needs liberals?

While the media has successfully portrayed the Republicans as the party of snake handlers and moonshine, the difference between image and reality is profound. Bush has just spun the odometer, proposing the nation's first ever $3 trillion budget. On matters pertaining to the very survival of our culture - the primacy of English, multiculturalism, the denuding of our public square of historically present Christian symbols and sentiments - Republicans are found wanting. As for illegal immigration, both the president and presumptive Republican nominee support a form of amnesty.

Yet many would paint America as under the sway of rightist politics, and some of the reasons for this are obvious. Some liberals know that the best way to ensure constant movement toward the left is by portraying the status quo as dangerously far right. If you repeatedly warn that we teeter on the brink of rightist hegemony, people will assume that to achieve "balance" we must tack further left toward your mythical center. Then we have conservatives influenced by the natural desire to view the world as the happy place they'd like to inhabit. Ingenuous sorts, they confuse Republican with conservative, party with principles, and electoral wars with the cultural one. But there's another factor: One can confuse conservative with correct.

When is the right not right, you ask? When it has been defined by the left.

The definition of "conservative" is fluid, changing from time to time and place to place. Some "conservatives" embrace an ideology prescribing limited government - one remaining within the boundaries established by the Constitution - and low taxation. They favor nationalism over internationalism; prefer markets mostly unfettered by regulation; eschew multiculturalism, feminism and radical environmentalism; and take pride in our history and traditions.

But there have been other kinds of conservatives. In the Soviet Union, a conservative was quite the opposite, a communist. Then, when Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn was assassinated in 2002, BBC News ran the headline, "Dutch far-right leader shot dead." "Far-right" indeed. Fortuyn was quite liberal by our standards; he was a pro-abortion, openly-homosexual ex-sociology professor branded a rightist mainly because he wished to stem Moslem immigration into Holland. Moreover, his fear was that zealous Moslems posed a threat to the nation's liberal social structure.

So here's the question: What definition of conservative would...

Monday, February 11, 2008

Jefferson on Washington

Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton often disagreed, and President Washington usually sided with Hamilton.

"His integrity was most pure, his justice the most inflexible
I have ever known, no motives of interest or consanguinity,
of friendship or hatred, being able to bias his decision.
He was indeed, in every sense of the words, a wise, a good,
and a great man."

-- Thomas Jefferson (on George Washington in a letter to Dr. Walter
Jones, 2 January 1814)

Reference: Jefferson: Writings, Peterson ed., Library of America

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Another Famous Deist

"All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed
frequent instances of superintending providence in our favor. To
that kind providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in
peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity.
And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? Or do we imagine
that we no longer need his assistance? I have lived, Sir, a
long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs
I see of this truth-- that God governs in the affairs of men.
And if a sparrow cannot fall to the Ground without his Notice,
is it probable that an Empire can rise without his Aid?"

-- Benjamin Franklin (To Colleagues at the Constitutional

Reference: Quoted by James Madison, Notes of Debates in the
Federal Convention of 1787. (New York: W.W. Norton and Company,
1987), pp. 209ff.

McCain: A Creature of the Media

And now... arising from the thin air of the deepest, darkest caverns of the Grand Canyon... it's Crazy John, the Creature from Cactus Country!!

by Ronald Kessler | Newsmax.com | February 3, 2008

John McCain is largely a creation of the media, David Keene, president of the American Conservative Union, tells Newsmax.

“McCain has gotten a free ride from the media,” says Keene, who has endorsed Mitt Romney for president. “Indeed, he’s gotten better treatment than any GOP candidate I can remember.”

While tagging other candidates “flip-floppers,” Keene says “admiring reporters” ignore McCain’s flaws and the fact that he has “changed or obfuscated his position on more issues this cycle than any other candidate. And that’s saying something.”

A linchpin of the conservative movement, Keene has headed the ACU, the country’s oldest and largest conservative grass-roots lobbying group, since 1984. With one million members, the ACU runs the Conservative Political Action Committee’s (CPAC) annual conference in Washington and publishes an annual Rating of Congress , the gold standard for ideological assessments of members of Congress.

Keene says McCain routinely rewrites his own record, and his version is accepted by the media.

“Take the Bush tax cuts,” Keene says. “When he opposed them, it was not because, as he now claims, they weren’t coupled with needed spending cuts, but because he charged à la the Dems that they were tax cuts for the rich.”

McCain said then: “I cannot in good conscience support a tax cut in which so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate among us at the expense of middle-class Americans who most need tax relief.”

“His rhetoric at the time had less to do with his claimed support for a smaller government than his apparent desire to out-demagogue Democrats in the Senate,” Keene says.

More recently, McCain “took the position that he shouldn’t be questioned about his past support of gun control legislation because the legislation he supported is now ‘moot,’” Keene says. “The press accepted this,” Keene says.

As second vice president of the National Rifle Association, Keene will automatically rise to president of the organization in three and a half years.

“Voters outside Washington must have wondered just what Senator Thad Cochran was getting at recently, when he said that the thought of John McCain in the White House ‘sends a cold chill down my spine,’” Keene says. “They must have wondered because...Keep reading>>>

Monday, February 04, 2008

The Ballot Initiative in Mississippi

"Initiative... had been a widely discussed campaign issue in the 1991 fall elections. Its eventual passage in the 1992 regular session of the legislature was widely hailed as a progressive reform of government. It was approved by an astounding 70% of the popular vote in the 1992 fall elections – making Mississippi the last state to adopt the statewide initiative process.

"However, the initiative process that was established in the state is one of the most difficult in the country. Since 1992, only two statewide initiatives have made it to the ballot – both to establish term limits – and both were defeated. [A 1998 law banning out-of-state petition circulators effectively killed our initiative process. A challenge to Oklahoma's similar ban-- Yes on Term Limits v. Savage-- is now in the 10th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals and may well have consequences for Mississippi.]"

From the Initiative & Referendum Institute:

Mississippi is the only state that once had a statewide initiative process but lost it: not because the people rejected it, but because the state Supreme Court in 1922 decided on the basis of a legal technicality to throw the I&R provision out of the state constitution.

Agitation for I&R in Mississippi achieved partial success for the first time in 1912, the peak year for I&R success nationwide. Mississippi voters approved an I&R amendment by a nearly two to one margin, but the measure failed because of the state's requirement that a "supermajority" of all votes cast in the election, rather than a simple majority of votes on the I&R question, ratify it. This was the same requirement that defeated Minnesota's I&R amendment in three elections.

In Mississippi, after the initial defeat, I&R supporters led by State Representatives N. A. Mott of Yazoo City and Frank Burkitt of Okolona succeeded in pushing their proposal through the legislature a second time, and it was on the ballot again in 1914. This time it passed by a margin of more than two to one, though it barely passed the supermajority requirement. [Note: Starting in the 1890s, Burkitt was one of the top leaders of the Mississippi Populist Party. He returned to the Democrats in the early 1900s.]

In 1916 voters successfully petitioned to refer a bill passed by the legislature appointing a certain Z. A. Brantley to the office of game and fish commissioner, and then rejected the law by popular vote. Brantley took the case to court, charging that the I&R amendment was not valid. On March 26, 1917 the state Supreme Court upheld the referendum and the I&R process (State v. Brantley, 113 Miss. 786, 74 South, 662, Ann. Cas. 1917E, 723). An elated Assistant Attorney General Lamar F. Easterling, who defended the I&R process in the case, wrote the following day that the decision "settles the matter finally in this state."

Easterling's assessment proved premature....

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Fatheaded Politicians

A bill has been introduced in the Mississippi House of Representatives to prohibit fast-food restaurants from serving obese people. One of the authors of this brilliant piece of work is W. T. Mayhall, Junior, a retired hustler of legal drugs. He says he knows it won't get out of committee, but he wanted to call attention to the state's obesity problem. He's mainly succeeded in making us a laughingstock.

No. 2 is John Read, a pharmacist by trade.

No. 3 is Bobby Shows, who, I'm told, owns a feed store. I wonder if he sells feed to people whose livestock are obese.

To give these honorable gentlemen your opinion:


I read about this on a blog from Washington state.

The reason I'm posting this is that I like to call attention to idiots.

Update: As expected, this moronic bill was defeated in committee. If these three geniuses really want to do us all a favor, they should introduce a bill to cut the size of the legislature-- especially since they are interested in reducing bloated things. Mississippi's legislature is larger than, for example, that of California, which has some twelve times our population. Maybe if the quantity were lowered, the quality would be raised.


President Bush-- that "compassionate conservative"-- is showing the same "compassion" for these two gentlemen that he showed for Karla Faye Tucker when he was governor of Texas. He won't pardon Ramos and Compean, but he DID pardon Scooter Libby before he served a day in jail.

These border patrol agents are/were incarcerated in the federal prison at Yazoo City, Mississippi; as I recall, that's where Ramos was savagely beaten by a gang of illegal aliens.

Judge E. Grady Jolly, a Mississippian, serves on the 5th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. Congressman Dana Rohrabacher is a former speechwriter for President Reagan and is now backing Mitt Romney for president.

Such outrages as this one make me proud that I voted for third party presidential candidates in 2000 and 2004.

by Christopher Ruddy | Newsmax.com

Before leaving the White House, President Bush should do the right thing and pardon the two Border Patrol agents who were sentenced to lengthy prison terms for shooting a fleeing drug smuggler — a case that’s been called a “prosecutorial travesty.”

The facts are fairly well known: Agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean were arrested following a shooting incident along the Mexican border in February 2005.

Mexican national Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila entered the country illegally in a van carrying 743 pounds of marijuana. When confronted by the agents, he scuffled with them and tried to flee back across the border. The agents opened fire. Aldrete-Davila was struck in the buttocks, but continued to flee.

The agents later said they saw a shiny object in Aldrete-Davila’s hand that they thought was a gun.

Federal prosecutors gave Aldrete-Davila blanket immunity in exchange for his testimony against the agents. Ramos and Compean were convicted on several charges, including assault with a deadly weapon and violation of civil rights.

In regard to the civil rights violation, it might be noted that both agents are Hispanic.

In October 2006, Ramos — who was nominated to be Border Patrol Agent of the Year — was sentenced to 11 years and one day in prison, and Compean received a 12-year sentence.

California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein called that a “huge penalty, more than most people serve for murder.”

Her fellow Californian, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, went further, declaring that the case is “the worst miscarriage of justice that I have witnessed in the 30 years I’ve been in Washington. The decision to give immunity to the drug dealer and throw the book at the Border Patrol agents was a prosecutorial travesty.”

It subsequently came to light that... Keep reading>>>

Saturday, February 02, 2008

An Echo, Not A Choice

If Crazy John is a "conservative," I'm a New York Jew cowboy. Chris neglects to note that McCain voted to put Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court, and that he considered his "good friend" Sen. John Kerry's offer to be the 2004 Democratic vice presidential nominee. Crazy John has also said that Sen. Hillary Clinton "would make a good president." In my view, conservatives in 2008 should focus on the down-ticket races. If Crazy John were elected president, he would have four or eight years to remake the GOP into an even more squishy, "me-too" party.

Barry Goldwater winning the 1964 GOP presidential nomination was a seminal event in the conservative takeover of the party, as it paved the way for Ronald Reagan's election in 1980. Goldwater-- who, ironically, later held the Senate seat now occupied by Crazy John-- defeated the Northeastern liberals who had controlled the GOP for many years. Most of those liberals were bitter and refused to back Goldwater in the general election against President Lyndon Johnson. So why should conservatives be enthusiastic now about helping McCain move the party-- and the government-- further to the left? To reverse the title of Phyllis Shlafley's great book from 1964, Crazy John versus Hillary or Sen. Obama will be an echo, not a choice.

Be sure to read the last three paragraphs.

by Christopher Ruddy | Newsmax.com | January 31, 2008

Sen. John McCain has emerged as the GOP front-runner. Barring any unforeseen problems, he will be the GOP nominee this year for president. But how did John McCain win, especially with so many conservatives against him?

Dick Morris suggested on Bill O’Reilly’s show Wednesday night that the GOP is just more liberal than we thought.

Dick is usually on target, but on this point, I respectfully disagree. The GOP is still very much the party of conservative Ronald Reagan. In fact, we keep hearing a frequent lament during this campaign: Where is Reagan?

Indeed, there has been no Reagan candidate to emerge so far.

With no candidate to back, the major pundits are emphasizing who they are against. Rush Limbaugh is clearly against John McCain. And each of the other major candidates in this race — Giuliani, Fred Thompson, Huckabee, Romney — have all had strong constituencies in the GOP that have opposed them.

But these same pundits and constituencies never seem to have a candidate whom they support.

Had conservatives united around Mitt Romney, for example, the outcome with McCain would have been decidedly different. Many believe, however, that Romney has been too inconsistent on key issues. Others fear a backlash against his Mormonism.

Back to Dick Morris’ point about the GOP being more liberal than many thought. McCain is not a liberal. He is a conservative. [BS!!] As such, he was the least offensive of the GOP candidates who ran in the Florida primary.

I think Florida voters saw it that way when they went to the polls and gave McCain a plurality (not a majority) in a very crowded field.

McCain is a maverick. McCain’s lifetime American Conservative Union voting record is 83 percent. Not bad! He is also pro-life, pro-gun, for limited government [say what?], and a strong national defense. He passes a certain acceptability level using the typical litmus tests for most Republicans.

Where McCain fails is on key issues that raise cackles from Republican stalwarts: He opposed the Bush tax cuts, [spear-headed the McCain-Feingold] campaign finance reform, supported Ted Kennedy’s approach to immigration, and supported global warming initiatives.

[... .]

... [L]iberals tend to applaud McCain for breaking from his party. That drives conservatives nuts.

The big question now that remains is if McCain can energize the conservative base — a must-do if he wants to win this coming November.

Some pundits suggest that GOP voters will rally around McCain no matter what — even if a “ham sandwich” were running against Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic opponent.

I strongly disagree with this sentiment. After eight years of being disappointed by the Bush administration, Reagan Republicans are likely to vote their conscience this year rather than the party line. [Bingo!]

John McCain needs to give them some really good reasons to make them think twice. Hillary won’t be reason enough.