Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Category Archives: Constitution

Colorado Senator Bennet Refuses to Answer Questions About the NDAA

Michael Bennet, Colorado Politician

I have rarely been as concerned for the future of freedom and our Constitution as I have been since the passage last December of S. 1867, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012.  I have rarely felt more frustrated with a politician than I am with Colorado Senator Michael Bennet (D) for responding to concerns about NDAA with nothing but disinformation and silence.

People with expertise in this area have voiced grave concerns about provisions of NDAA, particularly in Section 1031, which allow the government to arrest and indefinitely detain U.S. citizens without charge or due process based on mere suspicions about their support for terrorism or terrorist organizations.

Concerns about provisions so antithetical to the Constitution would be warranted any time.  But, they’re even more ominous since the Department of Homeland Security told us in 2009 it considers ordinary citizens who exercise their rights to purchase guns or who serve in the military to be “right wing extremists” and potential terrorists.  This motivated me to look a little more deeply into what Colorado Senator Bennet, who voted in favor of S. 1867 had to say.

So, I contacted Senator Bennet’s office in mid-December, 2011 asking him to explain his support for S. 1867 and to clarify concerns about S. 1867 viz-a-viz the Constitutional rights of U.S. citizens.

I received an email from Senator Bennet’s office saying

Keep reading…

U.S. Defense Department Announces Step Toward the North American Union

Español: Bandera Hipotetica de la unión Nortea...

Another step toward the North American Union was announced on Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Defense in its press release noting the “inaugural trilateral meeting” of North American defense ministers in Ottawa, Canada. It was attended by Canada’s Minister of National Defense Peter MacKay, Mexican Secretary of National Defense General Guillermo Galvan, and Mexican Secretary of the Navy Admiral Mariano Mendoza, along with U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta.

The communique was all about “defense,” “threats” and “security,” key fear-based watch-words decided upon years ago to sell the idea of the North American Union to the American people:

By virtue of our geography, our peoples, and our trading relationship, our three nations share many defense interests. Threats to North America and the hemisphere are increasingly complex and require non-traditional responses. Building upon the trilateral collaboration under the North American Leaders Summit process, we share a determination to enhance our common understanding of those threats and of the approaches needed to address them…

We know that transnational threats require transnational responses…

Our meeting today has established the framework necessary to build North America’s resilience by pursuing a practical agenda built on sustained trilateral cooperation on issues related to defense. [Emphasis added.]

The press release continued on in the same vein, stressing the need for trilateral coordination to provide 

Keep reading…

In Defense of Bumper Stickers

Bumper stickers, I like them.  Bumper stickers are an interesting means of expression.  They are usually short, clever, to the point statements aimed at calling our attention to a particular matter.  And that’s not a bad thing.

A good bumper sticker’s ability to capture our attention should not be underestimated.  Whatever the issue addressed by a bumper sticker, it is capable of bringing out from us strong emotional responses from one extreme to the other, and everywhere in between, depending upon our point of view.

Some are humorous:

Some are more serious:

Some are political:

 

Some are factual, others not, and some are just downright mean-spirited. There are literally thousands more of examples, but you get the idea.

Now sometimes bumper stickers are given a bad rap. This is particularly true in the context of the more serious political and social issues. People are often accused of having a “bumper-sticker mentality.” By that is meant that people engage in over-simplifying and exaggerating situations to try to make a point or gain some advantage. They seem to display an aversion to thinking and only superficially deal with problems, yet offer no solutions.

This rightly-attributed criticism toward a bumper-sticker mentality should not disparage the use of bumper stickers. Nor should it discourage us from ever using bumper-sticker comments; they are appropriate in many situations.

As seen in the examples above, not every bumper sticker warrants deep contemplation; perhaps just a good laugh or a smile in agreement. But on important matters, and there are many, in so far as bumper stickers do indeed recall to our minds the underlying principles of a thing, all well and good. Or if they invoke in us a desire to find out more about it, a good seed has been planted.

For example, the bumper sticker “Legalize the Constitution” brings to my mind that the U. S. Constitution is becoming less and less the law of the land—which is its rightful and original purpose. It reminds me that the U. S. Constitution is a document meant to ensure the political principles embodied in the Declaration of Independence. It reminds me that many of those elected to public office, who have sworn or affirmed to uphold and defend it, actually ignore it. It reminds me that the government founded upon it, and which it was intended to limit, is out of control. I wonder how this came to be. I think about words being twisted to mean things they were never intended to mean. It reminds me that I want to see it restored to its original power and purpose. And it reminds me that I have a duty to do something about it.

I started out saying I like bumper stickers, but on second thought, I love bumper stickers! They make me think more deeply about important matters. And that’s a good thing.

New Evidence, More Questions in Florida Shooting Incident

Trayvon Martin Protest - Sanford

The shooting of Florida teen Trayvon Martin has drawn national attention to the incident with many commentators already drawing conclusions about guilt and innocence in the matter. New information and evidence in the case continues to feed the controversy.

According to CBS News, Martin had been suspended from school three separate times for offenses ranging from tardiness and truancy to vandalism. In fact, he was on a 10-day suspension from school at the time he was shot by George Zimmerman, captain of the local Neighborhood Watch team. Preliminary evidence indicates that Martin had violated his school’s zero tolerance drug rules.

New information about exactly what happened that evening was released by law enforcement officials to the Orlando Sentinel, which published the following late Monday evening: 

Keep reading…

NSA’s Spy Program “Stellar Wind” Exposed

MILSTAR: A communication satellite

The lead story in Wired magazine for April exposed the Stellar Wind program for its intended purpose: to spy on every jot and tittle of every American citizen’s life all the way down to his “pocket litter:” parking-lot stubs, receipts from McDonald’s, tickets from his haircut at Cost Cutters, as well as all the way up to the content of his every e-mail, every Google search, every telephone or cellphone conversation.

Stellar Wind is the code name for an effort approved by President George W. Bush following the September 11, 2001 attacks to mine a large database of communications of American citizens but which was allegedly terminated when Congress pushed back against it.

However, the National Security Agency, awash with funds provided by Congress, is nearly finished constructing its Utah Data Center as the collection point for data provided from around the country and around the world. Its purpose: “to intercept, decipher, analyze and store vast swaths of the world’s communications…[including] all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls and Google searches.” In other words, according to James Bamford, author of The Shadow Factory: The Ultra-Secret NSA from 9/11 to the Eavesdropping on America, when the $2 billion facility (consisting of four 25,000 square-foot buildings full of computer servers and their air conditioning units plus a 900,000 square-foot building to house its technical and administration people) is completed in September, 2013,

virtually everything one communicates through any traceable medium, or any record of one’s existence in the electronic medium, which these days is everything, will…become the property of the US government to deal with as its sees fit.

William Binney, a former NSA crypto-mathematician who quit NSA after he realized it was openly and deliberately ignoring privacy limitations built into the Constitution, said in an interview with Bamford, holding his thumb and forefinger close together: “We are this far from a turnkey totalitarian state.”

Binney headed up a team that built the infrastructure to spy on everyone all the time and, at the time, recommended that NSA install its “tapping gear” only at the nation’s “landing sites”—physical locations where fiber optic cables come ashore—to limit its eavesdropping to international communications only and preserving Americans’ right to privacy. But NSA ignored Binney’s recommendation and instead decided to

Keep reading…

White House Shifts Legal Gears as ObamaCare Heads to Supreme Court

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe ...

The pressure of the continuing countdown to Monday, March 26, when the Supreme Court takes on the challenge to ObamaCare, has forced legal advisors to the White House to change their strategy in hopes of successfully rebuffing it and preserving the Obama administration’s key legislative victory signed into law in March, 2010.

It’s all about the mandate and whether it can be sustained by claiming justification for it under a generous reading of the Commerce Clause (Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3) in the Constitution. Without that mandate, the administration claims that the rest of the law would necessarily fail due to its excessive costs. The Congressional Budget Office just reported that those costs would be double what the Obama administration touted in its cram-down of the law two years ago. And another CBO study said that, if implemented, millions of citizens—between 3 million and 20 million—would actually lose their present coverage, while public polls continue to show declining support for the whole idea of the federal government’s virtual takeover of the country’s health delivery system.

An ABC News/Washington Post poll taken in January showed that most of those polled think that ObamaCare, if implemented, will cost jobs, hurt the economy, and cost more than projected. Last week’s poll from the same source showed that two-thirds of those polled “say the U.S. Supreme Court should throw out either the individual mandate…or the law in its entirety.” According to the pollsters, “[T]he law has never earned majority support in ABC/Post polls—and this update…finds a strong sense its critics are dominating the debate. Seventy percent of Americans report hearing mainly negative things about the law…”

Another measure of the intensity surrounding the pending Supreme Court hearings (a record six hours are scheduled over three days next week) is the number of “amicus” or “friend of the court” briefs that have been submitted by parties who are interested in influencing the outcome of a lawsuit but who are not parties to it. Reuters reported that 136 briefs have been filed with the court (a stack about two feet high), a third more than

Keep reading…

Is Ryan’s Budget Plan Headed in the Right Direction?

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 05:  U.S. Rep. Paul Rya...

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) announced on Tuesday the Republican budget plan to take into the election debate; it is in sharp contrast to the Obama administration’s budget announced last month. Two key differences stand out: reducing the number of income tax brackets from the current six to just two (10 percent and 25 percent), and cutting corporate income tax rates from 35 percent currently to 25 percent. The Obama administration wants to raise taxes instead.

There were other features to Ryan’s proposal, of course: vouchers for Medicare recipients, and spending cuts to balance the budget by the year 2040. And of course, Ryan’s bill has no chance of passage. Said Ryan: “We don’t expect to make law this year, but we expect to give the country an alternative choice for the future.” Ryan’s plan echoes proposals by Republican presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney, who also want to reduce and simplify the tax code, but is a far cry from the initial first-year $1 trillion cuts proposed by candidate Ron Paul (with a balanced budget in the second year of his first term).

The Heritage Foundation gave Ryan’s proposal an initial approval, saying that it largely met its own criteria for what needs to be done to rein in the government:

  • Does it cut spending sharply and quickly?
  • Does it begin decisive entitlement reform?
  • Does it avoid any tax hikes?
  • Does it ensure a strong national defense?
  • Does it contain pro-growth tax reforms?
  • Does it move swiftly and surely to a balanced budget?

No, says the Heritage Foundation, but it comes close: “It should be bolder in implementing entitlement reforms [and] it should strive for more aggressive

Keep reading…

Allen Stanford’s Ponzi Scheme a Study on Regulatory Capture

Allen Stanford, former chairman of the Stanford Financial Group of Companies, was convicted on Tuesday on 13 counts of fraud, conspiracy, obstructing justice, violating U.S. securities laws—for operating a Ponzi scheme. Sentencing is scheduled for June, which could result in Stanford remaining behind bars for at least another 20 years.

The scheme, valued at $7 billion at its zenith, has only $300 million in various accounts. Another jury has just ruled these accounts may be seized for potential customer restitution.

The Ponzi scheme was elegantly simple. Stanford’s offshore bank in the British overseas territoryof Montserrat was closed down for “irregularities” in the mid-1980s so he moved it to Antig

English: Sailing in Antigua Deutsch: Segeln au...

ua where he ingratiated himself, using investors’ money, with the local government by lending it millions of dollars and building government administration offices and a hospital. Meanwhile his investors were fooled into thinking they were buying ultra-safe Certificates of Deposit paying above-market rates of interest. His influence went way beyond the local government, however, with regular, sometimes daily, flights of U.S. Senators and Congressmen coming to Antigua to partake of Stanford’s generosity and enjoy his lavish parties. As Mikeda Mikel, the owner of a private jet company in Antigua explained: “They were partying on yachts in an exclusive resort, and when you have US politicians supporting a man like Mr. Stanford on an island as small as Antigua…if you had any doubts before [about his honesty] they go out the window. America has sanctioned him [therefore] he’s good to go.”

By investing in regulatory “protection,” Stanford was able to live for years on his investors’ capital without being disturbed by annoying questions into how he could pay such generous dividends to his clients. As Gaston Browne, chairman of the Antigua Labour Party (ALP), which was in power during Sanford’s heyday, said: 

Keep reading…

Modest Temporary Free Speech Victory in Cigarette Pack Pictures Ruling

Marlboro Cigarettes

On Wednesday U.S. District Court Judge Richard Leon ruled in favor of five tobacco companies protesting requirements by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to have them put on their cigarette packs graphic images of the consequences of smoking.

At issue was the right of free speech guaranteed under the First Amendment to the Constitution: “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech…” When Congress passed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (FSPTCA) in June of 2009, it gave regulatory authority over tobacco products to the FDA, requiring it to develop a new tobacco-regulation center.

The newly created center was only too happy to spell out the “rules” tobacco companies must now follow in its advertising, including images and statements on cigarette packs. When horrific images were required to be placed on packs, five tobacco companies sued, claiming infringement on their First Amendment free speech rights. Judge Leon agreed.

The companies argued that the images go way beyond the simple conveying of facts to the consumer but reach into actual forced advocacy of a government position, turning the companies’ advertising into billboards for government policy. The judge wrote that those images “were neither designed to protect the consumer from confusion or deception, nor to increase

Keep reading…

Obama’s Birth Certificate a Forgery says “Cold Case Posse”

English: This is the long form birth certifica...

The “Cold Case Posse” of Maricopa County, Arizonahas concluded it has “probable cause” that the President’s birth certificate released by the White House last April is “a computer-generated” forgery.

Made up of three retirement law enforcement officers and two lawyers with law enforcement experience who were appointed by Sheriff Joe Arpaio back in September, the posse is privately funded through a non-profit organization. At its press conference on Thursday, the posse released five videos that explored in detail how the forgery was made. Additionally, the posse has identified “at least one person of interest” in the alleged forgery.

The posse interviewed dozens of witnesses, examined hundreds of documents, and took “numerous” sworn statements from witnesses “around the world.” The posse concluded, according to Mike Zullo, its lead investigator, that the State of Hawaii’s Department of Health has “engaged in a systematic effort to hide from public inspection any original 1961 birth records it may have in its possession.” He added:

Officers of the Hawaii Department of Health and various elected Hawaiian public officials may have intentionally obscured 1961 birth records and procedures to avoid having to release to public inspection and to the examination of court-authorized forensic examiners any original Obama 1961 birth records [that department] may have.

After the birth certificate released by the White House last April was analyzed, the posse reported that “the evidence contained in the computer-generated PDF file released by the White House as well as important deficiencies in the Hawaii process of certifying the long-form birth certificate establish probable cause that a forgery has been committed.”

Two crimes were committed, according to the posse. First, someone in the White House

Keep reading…

“Sovereign Citizen Movement” Continues to Attract Attention

66ème Festival du Cinéma de Venise (Mostra), 8...

Film star Wesley Snipes (One Night StandBlade) is scheduled for release from federal prison on July 19, 2013, 31 months after being incarcerated for failure to file his income-tax returns.

During his trial several other charges against him were dismissed including attempts to use the 861 argument, a claim that section 861 of the tax code exempts certain activities from the income tax and that is used unsuccessfully by tax protesters to avoid paying income taxes, as well as fraudulent attempts to obtain income-tax refunds from the IRS—Snipes referred to himself as “a non-resident alien” despite the fact that he is a U.S.-born citizen.

These are some of the tools the “sovereign citizen movement” (SCM) teaches in its quest to free members from various onerous and perceived unconstitutional laws and to declare themselves independent of the government. They take the position that they are “answerable only to common law” and therefore are not subject to any statutes at the federal, state, or municipal levels. They do not officially recognize U.S. currency and declare themselves to be “free of any legal constraints.” One of those restraints is the obligation to pay income taxes, which they consider to be illegitimate, hence the failed “861 argument” in the Snipes case.

A few of the estimated 100,000-300,000 “members” occasionally go off the deep end and when confronted with reality, use threats of force and even violence in defense of their beliefs. According to the Los Angeles Times, Shawn Rice was a “sovereign citizen” who, upon being served a warrant for money-laundering, strapped on a bulletproof vest, armed himself, and then barricaded himself in his home in Seligman, Arizona. He was arrested after a 10-hour standoff and now is awaiting trial.

Several recent clashes, some of them fatal, have raised concerns within the FBI, which is now focusing on SCM members, along with the

Keep reading…

Appeals Court Refuses to Rule on Laptop Encryption Case

English: Gavel

When Ramona Fricosu’s attorney, Phil DuBois, promised to appeal a lower court’s ruling that she be forced to open encrypted files that may have incriminating data in them and assist the prosecution’s case against her, he never expected the appeals court to deny the appeal until after she had complied with the lower court’s demands.

But on Tuesday, February 21, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver did just that. It said that the defendant in a real estate scam must provide the prosecution with the data from encrypted files on her laptop computer, possibly containing incriminating evidence against her, before they would hear the appeal. In essence, she may be proven guilty long before she has a chance to be proven innocent by invoking protections under the Fifth Amendment. Said DuBois, this establishes “a very dangerous precedent that a person may be forced to assist in her prosecution in a way the law has not seen before.”

In order for the appeal to proceed, Ramona Fricosu would be compelled to meet with federal agents who will then wait until she opens the encrypted files, copies the contents onto an unencrypted disk, and hands it over.

The judge sidestepped the real issue by claiming that she was supplying only the key to the “vault” where the information was kept rather than the encryption password that she keeps in her mind. DuBois initially claimed, to no avail, that the password in her mind was protected by

Keep reading…

Thousands of Criminal Attacks Thwarted by Armed Citizens

English: Houston Gun show at the George R. Bro...

According to the authors of Cato Institute’s recently released study on how often guns are used by citizens to prevent crime, “tens of thousands of crimes are prevented each year by ordinary citizens with guns.” In a study of more than 5,000 news reports over an eight-year period, Clayton Cramer and David Burnett showed that the mere presence of an armed citizen thwarts many crimes, even beyond those that are reported by the police and subsequently printed in the newspaper.

Questions the study was designed to answer were, “When ordinary Americans use guns in self-defense, what is the nature of that use? How frequently do these events occur and what are the consequences?”

Of the 5,000 incidents reported between October 2003 and November 2011, 488 involved home burglaries along with another 1,227 incidents where intruders fled when confronted by armed inhabitants. Another 34 concerned pizza delivery drivers defending themselves, along with 172 animal attacks. Concerns about an attacker taking a gun away from an armed victim were proven invalid, with 227 incidents reported where the intended victim disarmed his attacker, while just 11 attackers disarmed his victim. Twenty-five rapes were avoided by armed victims. Two hundred and one attacks were neutralized by armed senior citizens (over age 65, according to the authors).

The study also put into perspective the number of accidental shootings that were reported to the papers in that eight-year period. Although the Centers for Disease Control reported 535 accidental shootings in 2006, the authors found only

Keep reading…

The Clock is Ticking on Obama’s Eligibility

Barack Obama’s last California visit, Silicon ...

Attorney Van Irion of the Liberty Legal Foundation (LLF) filed an appeal to a Georgia superior court to review and overturn the decision by Georgia’s Secretary of State Brian Kemp to keep Barack Obama’s name on the state’s 2012 primary ballot. Irion claimed that Kemp’s decision was based on a faulty ruling by administration law Judge Michael Mahili who threw out testimonies presented by Irion and two other attorneys in a hearing on January 26th.

At issue is whether Obama is a “natural born citizen” as required under the Constitution to qualify to run for the office of president. Georgia law requires that “every candidate for federal office…shall meet the constitutional and statutory qualifications for holding [that] office…”

In his appeal Irion claimed that Mahili failed to follow procedures properly, and attempted to make a judgment on the facts presented rather than certifying them. Irion said that when he pressed Mahili for a response, Mahili stepped aside, saying that

Keep reading…

Foreclosure Settlement Bails Out the Big Banks

English: Wells Fargo Center

The report from The New York Times on Wednesday about the foreclosure settlement reached between five big banks and 49 states’ attorneys general made it appear that justice was being served. The $26 billion to be paid out to some 2 million homeowners (former and current) “could provide relief” to them under the terms of the settlement. It would also remove a cloud of uncertainty from the banks’ liability and might help in “halting the housing market’s downward slide.”

States’ attorneys general started an investigation in the fall of 2010 into the mortgage servicing industry when it was discovered that homeowners were being evicted or penalized through improper, incorrect or false paperwork emanating from Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Ally Financial (formerly GMAC) with the help of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS).

Over the 14-month investigation the scope broadened and deepened as the extent of the costs and fraudulent abuses was revealed. The settlement means that, on the surface, the money will go to help homeowners affected by the fraud. A million homeowners can expect to have their existing mortgages reduced or their interest rates reduced. Another 750,000 former homeowners will receive, over the next three years, checks estimated to be about $2,000.

The size of the settlement fades into insignificance in light of the fact that there are more than

Keep reading…

How Leviathan Works: FDA to Regulate Medical Apps

The press release issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which operates under the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), on July 19, 2011, signaled the beginning of its regulatory process, this time concerning “mobile medical apps.” The announcement made it plain that such regulation certainly fell under its jurisdiction, as if declaring it made it so: “The use of mobile medical apps on smart phones and tablets is revolutionizing health care delivery,” according to Jeffrey Shuren, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “Our draft approach calls for oversight of only those mobile medical apps that present the greatest risk to patients when they don’t work as intended.”

Beginning its existence in 1927 as the Food, Drug, and Insecticide organization (becoming the Food and Drug Administration in 1930), a significant expansion of the FDA’s reach sprang from the elixir sulfanilamide disaster which resulted in the deaths of more than 100 people in 1937. Under the Roosevelt administration this was an opportunity to be seized, and the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) was passed in 1938 under which Congress “gave authority” to the Food and Drug Administration to oversee the safety of food, drugs, and cosmetics.

The July 19 announcement allayed concerns that the FDA was going to regulate every app somehow related to food, or drugs, or cosmetics. The press release said the agency would attempt to regulate only “a small subset of mobile medical apps that impact or may impact the performance or functionality of currently regulated medical devices.” These would include, initially at least: 

Keep reading…

Courts and Dept of Justice Agree: Videotaping Police is OK

March 3, 1991: Rodney King being beaten by LAP...

Ken Paulsen, president and CEO of the First Amendment Centerwrote in USA Today that “just as police officers use technology to watch citizens, including patrol car cameras, traffic light cameras and radar to track speeding, the public [also] has a right to monitor the work of officers on the public payroll.”

Perhaps the most memorable and life-altering event in the history of citizens recording police behavior was that moment on the evening of March 3, 1991, when George Halliday, using his Sony video recorder, taped the beating of Rodney King in Los Angeles. By the time the dust had settled, two of the four officers charged in the beating were found guilty, 53 people were dead, 2,383 people were injured, more than 7,000 fires had been set, 3,100 business establishments had been damaged or destroyed, $1 billion in losses had been sustained, and police behavior was permanently altered.

As Joel Rubin noted in his article commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Rodney King incident in the Los Angeles Times

Keep reading…

Regulatory Agencies Continue to Slow the Economy

English: The western front of the United State...

In a recent editorial entitled “Regulation without Representation,” Investors Business Daily pointed out that a new federal rule or regulation is published every two hours, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. But most of them escape the notice of Congress. Congress itself passes fewer than 200 in each session, the rest are promulgated by agencies in the Executive Branch in contravention of explicit instructions in the Constitution. In a landmark study prepared for the Small Business Administration (SBA), Nicole and Mark Crain (pictured at left), economists at Lafayette College, counted the cost and concluded that regulations cost the American economy more than half the federal budget and even more than the annual deficit: an astounding $1.75 trillion annually. And most of those costs land squarely on small businesses with fewer than 20 employees — the very engine that drives the economy, or doesn’t. According to the authors, the regulatory burden on a small business in 2008 exceeded $10,000 per employee! When that burden is translated into the burden on the ultimate consuming household — recognizing that all costs are ultimately paid by the consumer, directly or indirectly — the burden exceeds $15,000 a year. And that is using data from 2008. When the total federal burden, both regulatory and fiscal, is calculated, the average household in America is saddled with costs approaching $40,000 a year. Here is how such regulation works: Administrative law, according to Wikipedia “exists because the Congress often grants broad authority to Executive branch agencies to interpret the statutes…which the agencies are entrusted with enforcing.” Wiki explains:

Congress may be too busy, congested, or gridlocked to micromanage the jurisdiction of those agencies by writing statues that cover every possible detail, or Congress may determine that the technical specialists at the agency are best equipped to develop detailed applications of statutes to particular facts as they arise.

And that is crux of the matter. Under the Constitution (Article I, Section 1), “all legislative powers herein contained shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” Nowhere is power granted in the Constitution for said Congress to “grant broad authority to Executive branch agencies,” but there it is: an entire Fourth Branch of government that has sprung up out of

Keep reading…

Ga. Court Rules Obama Eligible to Run; Appeal Slated

Barack Obama and Michelle Obama

Following the hearing on January 26, and after reviewing briefs presented on behalf of plaintiffs alleging that Barack Obama is not a “natural born citizen” under the Constitution and therefore ineligible to run for President in the state of Georgia, administrative hearing Judge Michael Malihi rejected those allegations.

He tossed the allegations presented by lawyer Orly Taitz that Obama fraudulently obtained social security numbers, forged his Hawaiian birth certificate, and did not “otherwise possess valid U.S. identification papers,” holding that the witnesses whom Taitz presented were neither “reliable” nor of any “probative” value (evidence that is useful to prove something important in a court of law), and found their “testimony…to be…wholly insufficient to support [Taitz’s] allegations.”

The judge had a little more trouble dispensing with the allegations brought by the Liberty Legal Foundation that Obama is not a natural born citizen under Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 of the U.S. Constitution. Noting that a proper definition of “natural born citizen” has been the source of much debate and at least two Supreme Court decisions, the judge finally decided that an Indiana Court of Appeals in 2009 had

Keep reading…

Oklahoma’s Constitutional Amendment Would Pit Taxpayers Against Unions

Oklahoma State Capitol

When Oklahoma State Senator David Holt discovered that Oklahoma was ranked the “most anti-taxpayer state in the southern United States” by the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), he decided to propose amending the state’s constitution to stop the unions’ gravy train of collective bargaining contracts without taxpayer approval. His amendment says nothing about unions or collective bargaining. All he did was explain, in his press release, that if the amendment were passed, the constitution would allow local taxpayers to approve all spending of their tax dollars by local authorities for any purpose. He stated:

Oklahoma’s Constitution already makes it very difficult to raise taxes, and that’s a good thing. But every new tax starts with a new expense, and the Oklahoma Constitution, remarkably, does not give taxpayers or their local elected representatives the absolute power to spend tax dollars.

There are dozens of examples in recent years of local taxpayers being forced to take on new financial obligations, not only without the consent of either the taxpayers or their representatives, but actually over their objections.

And though he never mentions unions or dues extracted from union members’ paychecks to be spent for political purposes or benefits or pensions or job security—they are his target. Because of collective bargaining agreements, unions have routinely overridden

Keep reading…

Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.