Or is it high-capacity ammo? Reminds me of the people who tried to regulate the Information Superhighway back in 1997, without ever venturing online. Clueless is as clueless does.
I keep hearing from the media that the Founders never intended for the Right to Bear Arms to involve defense against tyranny. It used to be just about hunting, they said. Now they admit it also involves self-defense, but still deny that weapons useful for revolution were intended to be covered.
James Madison, the main architect of the US Constitution, disagreed strongly in Federalist 46. After suggesting that it was nearly impossible in a free country for the federal government to become supreme, that the federal power in most areas was limited, and that the states would rise as one should the national government encroach on their sovereignty, he goes on to argue that, even if he is wrong the people will still prevail. If anyone has issues with words like “traitors” describing federal officeholders, blame Madison, not me.
The only refuge left for those who prophesy the downfall of the State governments is the visionary supposition that the federal government may previously accumulate a military force for the projects of ambition. The reasonings contained in these papers must have been employed to little purpose indeed, if it could be necessary now to disprove the reality of this danger. That the people and the States should, for a sufficient period of time, elect an uninterupted succession of men ready to betray both; that the traitors should, throughout this period, uniformly and systematically pursue some fixed plan for the extension of the military establishment; that the governments and the people of the States should silently and patiently behold the gathering storm, and continue to supply the materials, until it should be prepared to burst on their own heads, must appear to every one more like the incoherent dreams of a delirious jealousy, or the misjudged exaggerations of a counterfeit zeal, than like the sober apprehensions of genuine patriotism.
Extravagant as the supposition is, let it however be made. Let a regular army, fully equal to the resources of the country, be formed; and let it be entirely at the devotion of the federal government; still it would not be going too far to say, that the State governments, with the people on their side, would be able to repel the danger. The highest number to which, according to the best computation, a standing army can be carried in any country, does not exceed one hundredth part of the whole number of souls; or one twenty-fifth part of the number able to bear arms. This proportion would not yield, in the United States, an army of more than twenty-five or thirty thousand men. To these would be opposed a militia amounting to near half a million of citizens with arms in their hands, officered by men chosen from among themselves, fighting for their common liberties, and united and conducted by governments possessing their affections and confidence.
It may well be doubted, whether a militia thus circumstanced could ever be conquered by such a proportion of regular troops. Those who are best acquainted with the last successful resistance of this country against the British arms, will be most inclined to deny the possibility of it. Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. And it is not certain, that with this aid alone they would not be able to shake off their yokes. But were the people to possess the additional advantages of local governments chosen by themselves, who could collect the national will and direct the national force, and of officers appointed out of the militia, by these governments, and attached both to them and to the militia, it may be affirmed with the greatest assurance, that the throne of every tyranny in Europe would be speedily overturned in spite of the legions which surround it.
Let us not insult the free and gallant citizens of America with the suspicion, that they would be less able to defend the rights of which they would be in actual possession, than the debased subjects of arbitrary power would be to rescue theirs from the hands of their oppressors. Let us rather no longer insult them with the supposition that they can ever reduce themselves to the necessity of making the experiment, by a blind and tame submission to the long train of insidious measures which must precede and produce it.
Of course, Madison never expected a population willing to sell their birthright for a pocketful of mumbles; such are promises.
And hope for a happy new year.
to live in an alternate universe.
Living in California, I’ve watched the Republican Party become completely uncompetitive in the state for many of the same reasons it is having problems nationally. The first and most obvious issue is abortion. We need to punt.
It’s been 40 years since Roe v Wade, and longer still since California Governor Ronald Reagan signed a bill that allowed abortions in the case of rape, incest or danger to the mother’s health. If we cannot convince the people to undo the Roe decision in 40 years of trying, we never will. It isn’t like they haven’t heard us.
It’s time to try another path.
We should offer a limited Abortion Rights Amendment, accepting the inevitable but limiting the damage. This would accomplish several things: it would remove the issue from national politics; it would make it clear that the basic abortion right is not subject to the whim of 5 justices; it would allow many liberty-minded individuals to again consider voting Republican; it would correct the tactical error of Roe; and it would put abortion extremists on the defensive.
Perhaps something like this:
Neither Congress nor any state shall enforce any law preventing an adult woman from terminating a pregnancy during the first trimester of pregnancy, at her own expense.
Other matters relating to reproductive rights are delegated to the several states or to the people thereof, however the right to travel while pregnant may not be denied.
Three generations of women have relied on the Roe decision. Before too many years more, all women will have come of age after Roe. We really need to find a way to move on, before we lose these voters forever.
Four more years.
The only bight spot, the only real hope, is that Barack Obama will choose to work with the Congress in order to create his legacy and won’t return to the stalemate of the last two years.
He has no real mandate. Half the people wanted someone else. Ten days ago he was down 5-6% and the Benghazi thing was metastasizing. Had that dynamic continued it is hard to see how he would have won — there were no new arguments to be made and more things to defend every day.
Then the storm hit the northeast, the news media converged and suddenly there was The President touring the area with an obsequious Republican governor. There was the billionaire Mayor of New York suggesting that this was all global warming and endorsing Obama. And the cameras seemed to miss all the huddled masses in Queens and on Staten Island begging for water and blankets which FEMA had not thought to provide. They also missed the elderly trapped in 19th floor apartments with no food, water or power while generators sat unused at abandoned party tents in Central Park.
For a week, the reputable polling firms (both in New Jersey) were silent. But everything had changed. When they finally published again on Monday, the race was back to even and the independents were no longer 20 points for Romney. The Senate and House races followed Romney down.
So, Obama won narrowly, on a fluke. Them’s the breaks. But to claim a mandate, or expect to treat the Congress as a rubber stamp would be a (continued) mistake of the first order. The President has a window of opportunity. He should get the Congressional leadership together, lay out an agenda and ask for cooperation; he might get it if he is willing to give as well as get.
There are things he wants, and things the Republicans need. There are many deals to be made. But if he reverts to “We Won!”, it is going to be a very long four years.
Masterful post by Pajamas Media’s “Zombie” regarding The Complete List of Barack Obama’s Scandals, Misdeeds, Crimes and Blunders. Far too much to even begin to excerpt, but just wonderful.
Then capped off by an equally masterful comment, recalling the Guy Fawkes Day poem:
Remember, remember, this sixth of November,
The radicals’ treasonous plot.
I know of no reason the radicals’ treason
Should e’er be forgiv’n or forgot.
The Sixties were waning, and Leftists were claiming
That radical changes were due.
Their Marxist solution was armed revolution:
The Weathermen made their debut.
But Jefferson’s aim, with the charters he framed, was
To guard individual rights.
And “redistribution” was not a solution,
But one of the evils to fight.
So let us remember, this sixth of November,
Just what is at stake on this date.
Will Jefferson’s dream, or the radicals’ scheme, now
Determine America’s fate?
One day off, but read the whole thing. First time I’ve seen a viral blog comment.
John Klotsche, described as the retired chairman of a Chicago law firm, writes in today’s LA Times about the fanciful Electoral Tie Scenario, where Romney and Obama each get 269 electoral votes and, barring correction in the Electoral College itself, the election is thrown into the House of Representatives.
It is surprising that such a distinguished lawyer could get so very many things wrong.
He first suggests that the new House might have problems deciding, which ignores the GOP’s current count of delegation majorities (33). Sure they could lose seats, but they’d need to get drubbed for that to matter and the polls suggest nothing of the sort.
He then suggests that some Romney voter might vote for Ron Paul or someone else (but oddly not that some Obama supporter would have pause). But unless they voted for the other guy, it would still send the vote to the House, albeit with a third-place finisher who could theoretically prevail. Since a Ron Paul supporter is unlikely to opt for Barack Obama over, well, anyone, the most likely “faithless elector” scenario is one where the elector votes for the popular vote winner out of frustration with the process. Klotsche misses that, too.
He then demonstrates several times that he does not know the meaning of the word “gerrymander“, using it in a sense that seems to mean “getting people to change their votes.”
But the real embarrassment is a flat misstatement of the US Constitution, where Kotsche suggests:
And speaking of gerrymandering[sic], for the House or the Senate to cast a tie-breaking vote for either president or vice president, the Constitution stipulates a two-thirds quorum requirement. What happens if the putative losing party (likely Democrats in the House, the GOP in the Senate) decides to go AWOL?
Actually the Constitution stipulates nothing of the sort. Article II, Section 3, Clause 1 (as amended in Amendment XII) says:
The person having the greatest Number of votes for President, shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed; and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice.
Such a quorum technically requires only 34 Congressmen, each from a separate state, and a majority vote among them. Eighteen Congressmen could elect a President if need be. Good luck with that leaving-town maneuver. (Note: this gimmick would work with the Senate’s vote for VP, but the Republic will stand for a while without a VP.)
Silliness from start to finish. But this is the Los Angeles Times.
(via Elizabeth Price Foley guestblogging at Instapundit)
The President is a criminal.
The people who work for the president are criminals. The Vice President, the Secretary of State, the UN Ambassador, the Director of National Intelligence, the Press Secretary and all the rest who have been part and parcel of the Benghazi Affair and its coverup are all criminals.
The revelations keep on coming and all threads of this gruesome crime lead back to the President and his staff. This isn’t just about an ambassador dying any more. It’s about the widespread corruption of American institutions in the service of a thicket of lies.
Minutes after the attack started, the White House knew that an organized terrorist attack was taking place against the Benghazi consulate. Their only action was to order a drone into place to monitor the situation. They held off all other rescue. There were CIA forces only a mile away, who were told to stand down and not get involved. There were jets in Italy that could have been overhead in less than an hour. There were alert special forces in Italy who could have been on scene in a few hours. None were called into action. When the single drone was finally in position, they just sat and watched. And did nothing. And delayed.
The only person speaking out was a Cairo embassy PR flack, whose message of “We’re sorry, please don’t hurt us” was broadcast worldwide even as the al-Qaeda flag was run up on US soil. And still they did nothing. They said nothing. They were absent.
One actually suspects that they were doing something — they were frantically gaming the political fallout and gauging various spins and cover-ups. Not only of this failure, but the underlying failure of the entire Arab Spring policy, which they had already been covering up for months and feared they could hide no longer. This failure to act was just an extension of the previous coverup.
Only when Governor Romney spoke out, in frustration at the White House’s silence and the embassy’s idiotic and embarrassing tweets, did the Administration bestir itself. They attacked Romney with all the strength and unity that they did not show towards the Americans dying in Libya.
Then they adopted al-Qaeda’s trumped-up distraction — the video — as the cause of it all, and spent several days chasing down some poor fool — who was now being used by both sides as a scapegoat and rallying point. When the truth — as they well knew — had nothing to do with any film or spontaneous protest. It was enemy action and they chose again not to see it.
Everyone knew that Benghazi had been overrun with al-Qaeda since spring. Their flags flew everywhere. Our consulate had already been bombed. Twice. Other ambassadors had been attacked. Most western diplomats had left, including the Brits (clue: when Brits leave a place, you should too). But we stayed because to leave would have been to admit policy failure. And when failure came anyway, in the form of mortars and machine guns, the Administration let people die rather than respond, and pretended it was all a spontaneous mob acting on the spur of the moment.
They lied and lied and lied. They are still lying. The last vestiges of a free press are attempting to bring it all to light, but the state and its media stalwarts continue to deceive, inveigle and obfuscate in the hope they can make it all so confusing that the truth will be lost in the noise. They may succeed for a time.
The verdict of history will be brutal.