FROM THE GULLIBLE CITIZEN TOM TO THE GULLIBLE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES

Pilgrims John Carver, William Bradford, and Miles Standish, at prayer during their voyage to America. Painting by Robert Walter Weir.
Here is an example of what people once thought of when they spoke of fellow travelers. Pilgrims John Carver, William Bradford, and Miles Standish, at prayer during their voyage to America. Painting by Robert Walter Weir.

Recently, I got this comment from a fellow who calls himself “The Night Wind.”

The Night Wind

That’s just the tip of the iceberg:

http://sputniknews.com/world/20160607/1040919175/assange-russia-media-conference.html

Sputnik? Aside from the fact the news content was atrociously anti-American, I was suspicious of the name. What does sputnik mean?

sputnik (n.) Look up sputnik at Dictionary.com
“artificial satellite,” extended from the name of the one launched by the Soviet Union Oct. 4, 1957, from Russian sputnik “satellite,” literally “traveling companion” (in this use short for sputnik zemlyi, “traveling companion of the Earth”) from Old Church Slavonic supotiniku, from Russian so-, s- “with, together” + put’ “path, way,” from Old Church Slavonic poti, from PIE *pent- “to tread, go” (see find (v.)) + agent suffix -nik. (continued here)

As this article indicates, Russia launches ‘Sputnik’ media offensive to counter US propaganda, sputniknews.com exists to promote Russian propaganda. It is similar in nature to rt.com.

The name “sputnik news” is ironic. The word “sputnik” first gained familiarity in the West when the USSR launched a series of satellites named Sputnik. Since  artificial satellites generally orbit the earth, most satellites are in fact a “traveling companion of the Earth”.  oxforddictionaries.com, however, describes a slightly different origin for term “sputnik” which adds a bit of perspective.

Russian, literally ‘fellow-traveler’. (from here)

What is “fellow-traveler”?

fellow traveler noun
1. a person who supports or sympathizes with a political party, especially the Communist Party, but is not an enrolled member.
2. anyone who, although not a member, supports or sympathizes with some organization, movement, or the like.

Read The Night Wind’s comments defending (here and here) sputniknews.com. The Night Wind is something of a fan of Vladimir Putin. Thus, the Night Wind’s comments suggest that that old KGB agent’s propaganda is having some success.

Are The Night Wind’s complaints about the Western news media legitimate? Sadly, the answer is yes, but reading Russian propaganda hardly constitutes a solution.

What makes us so vulnerable to such propaganda in this country? We need to think about that, and we need to formulate a solution. So let’s consider the nature of the problem.  What factors make it more difficult than it once was to discern the truth in the news?

  • The mechanics of our government have changed drastically. When it originated, the Federal Government had little power. Except for a few items, those actually enumerated in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution, most government operations — what little there were — in the United States were state and local. Then we could see for ourselves what was going on and speak to our leaders face-to-face. Yet the Federal Government now spends nearly twice what our state and local governments spend.
  • Why has local government diminished? To make local government work, we must be engaged in our local communities, but power-grabbing politicians have nearly torn our local communities apart. Unlike previous generations of Americans, we are not skilled in the art of community organizing. We would not even use such a phrase the same way. Our forbears would have thought of organizing to perform a charitable work. We think of community organizing getting the government to spend other people’s money.

Our forebears spent most of their day engaged within their local communities. They worked, educated their children, went to church, and played (even the adults) with their immediate neighbors.  Today not many of us do that. We spend our days tens of miles from home at our jobs, and we waste hours traveling on government-run roads that don’t work. Then we compound the damage. We educate our children in poorly managed government-run schools that discourage parental involvement. We may not go to church, and most of us spend hours a day escaping our “problems”. We “play” on a TV or Internet, or we just commiserate with each other by boozing it up with friends.

What do I think we should do? Well, turning sputniknews.com or rt.com for information is not going to help us. We know these people are trying to deceive us. Instead, we need to decrease the power and importance of government. We need to diminish the vast wealth our government controls. We need to make lying to us less attractive and less profitable; we need to bring government closer to home where we can keep an eye on it.

  • We need to stop giving politicians OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY to pay for public infrastructure. The worst kind of politicians sell access to OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY. When we pay for our roads, for example, with OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY, in return for campaign donations and various “favors”, politicians put the roads where developers want them. Then, in return for more for campaign donations and “favors”, politicians strangle what they had the gall to call a parkway with stoplights.  If we want decent transportation system, then we have to pay with our own money. We have to pay tolls. Then, developers will have to pay for their own roads.
  • We need to stop giving politicians power to redistribute the wealth.  Politicians use the power redistribute the wealth to buy our votes.  That has nothing to do with true charity; such charity is just stealing. Yet we have based our education system, our retirement systems, and our health care system upon such notions of charity. Because true charity is based upon love, government cannot effectively provide charity. Whenever government tries to provide charity, larceny will result. Human nature is such that any government system that spends OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY for the sake of OTHER PEOPLE must become corrupt, too costly, and eventually useless.
  • We need to put the kibosh on the identity politics. What just happened in Florida illustrates the gravity of the problem. Because of the fact they tend to vote Democrat, some of our glorious leaders want to import all the poor, dark skin people they can into this country. That includes Muslims. Yet as events keep demonstrating, our leaders have no way whatsoever of screening out Islamic terrorists from a peaceful Muslims. So why then is the LBGTQ crowd voting for Democrats? Consider their choice, our choice. Is it more important to force our views on others or to be left in peace to pursue our own definition of happiness?

Why do we have to drive so far and spend so much time traveling to work? Everybody wants to live in the country in a big house with a big yard.  So politicians have subsidized what we wanted with OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY (so-called parkways), and they have protected big yards with zoning laws.

Why do we have expensive schools that don’t work? Everybody wants a fabulous education for their children. So politicians have subsidized what we wanted with OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY. They have built costly schools and staffed those schools with expensive teachers and administrators, members of public employee’s unions who kindly contributed to and worked for their reelection. Therefore, since those schools must be run by the government and secularized, we have created socialist institutions promoting the glories of Big Government.

Why don’t local communities provide charity, and why is our country going broke? Everybody wants a fail-safe financial safety net.  So politicians have subsidized what we wanted with OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY. Thus, we have food stamps, Social Security, Obamacare, and dozens of other programs that cost too much.

Why do politicians keep insisting that it is a small world and diversity means everyone must be politically correct? Everybody wants the assurance that everyone else likes them just as they are. We want everyone to think like us, and we don’t want anyone better or worse off than we are. That is, because every little community would be different, we cannot get by with local government. Otherwise, we actually would have diversity. So we have to nationalize every problem and make everyone think about everything and do everything the same way.

Therefore, as the result of too much government, we don’t have time to spend in our local neighborhoods, we don’t have much reason to talk to our neighbors, and we have trouble believing anything the news media wants to tell us.

You don’t believe me? Then please explain why we have to choose between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton for president.

 

WHY DOES CONGRESS HAVE TO PASS A LAW TO PROTECT OUR EMAIL?

On Friday I got this email from my congressman, Rob Wittman. It left me a bit confused. Wittman is not a bad congressman, and I suppose he should have voted for the Email Privacy Act (H.R. 699). I just wonder why it was necessary.

Rob_WittmanYou know that email you’ve been saving? The one from your dad … or co-worker … or best friend … or daughter? The one they thought only you would see? The one YOU thought only you would see? Well, as the law stands now, law enforcement officials could have legal access to that email without so much as a warrant.

Maybe that surprises you, or maybe it doesn’t. But the fact is that as technology has expanded, the law hasn’t. The Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA), the primary law governing email privacy, was passed in 1986—before most of us even knew that email existed. Since then, only minimal reforms have been made to the ECPA, and vulnerabilities in the law have raised significant digital privacy concerns for the public.

It’s not hard to see that the world is evolving around us. We have access to technology that didn’t exist 10 or 5 or even 2 years ago, and that’s a great thing. Technology gives us the opportunity to better ourselves and the world around us. It helps us to connect with people all around the globe in ways we never could have imagined were possible. But tech developments shouldn’t come at the cost of individual privacy and security. The way we protect information should be reflective of the way that we store and share information.

Last week, the House voted 419 to 0, with my support, in favor of the Email Privacy Act (H.R. 699), a bill that would revise the ECPA to require law enforcement agencies to obtain search warrants before gaining access to personal messages and files stored by companies like Google, Yahoo, and Dropbox. Right now, agencies can gain access to emails and other digital files more than 90 days old by issuing subpoenas to technology companies—a very low standard for gaining access to information. This legislation would require law enforcement officers to secure a judge-issued warrant before gaining access to digital information stored in the cloud.

The Email Privacy Act represents the first major update to our digital privacy laws in three decades, and it’s past time for us to make a change. The choice between privacy and technology is a false one. The Fourth Amendment, the Constitutional provision that guarantees privacy and designates it as a fundamental liberty, is strong enough to safeguard our rights in every situation. We have to make sure that our laws conform to that standard, and I believe that the Email Privacy Act takes positive steps in that direction.

Here is the  Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

I am no legal scholar, but is there such a big a difference between snail mail and email that judges think snooping into our snail mail requires a warrant, but an email doesn’t? Don’t our presidents nominate these judges? Doesn’t our Senate consent to their appointment? Then why do we need this law?

Technology should free us to do things our ancestors never even imagined.  Today we can fly. We have visited the moon. Perhaps our grandchildren will settle other planets in our solar system. Who knows? Is it possible that some day Americans will journey to distant stars? Maybe not. Some of those who rule us care about us, but we also have many perverse leaders, and we have the people who vote for them. Instead of protecting our rights and furthering our dreams, too many of those who rule us seek to spend every cent we have, and then they spy on us. They have to make certain they have us under control. How can we dream of reaching the stars when our own rulers seek to bind and enslave us?

You have a congressmen or a senator who is more interested in spending your money than he is in protecting your rights? Have you considered voting for someone else?

OF TWISTED WORDS => POLITICALLY CORRECT

Ummah (Islamic community) distribution map according to Pew Research. (from here)
Ummah (Islamic community) distribution map according to Pew Research. (from here)

POLITICALLY CORRECT? WHAT’S THAT ALL ABOUT? — PART 1 was supposed be the first of four posts. However, because this is a blog, I write what I want, and I write what passion drives me to write. So I can get sidetracked onto a different topic easily enough, but there is this strange thing. Sooner or latter passion usually brings me back with even greater force to the topic from which I got sidetracked. In this case, that passion belongs to Donald Trump. Hence I will wrap up what was to be a four-part series with this post.

What is modern America’s primary failing? We don’t study the Bible; we are losing the advantages of our Christian heritage. Therefore, we have a difficult time discerning between honest men and women and demagogues.

What is the difference between honest leaders and demagogues? Demagogues scratch our itching ears. Honest leaders strive to speak the truth, perhaps even out of their love for their neighbors. Thus, when we have an election, to vote for the right person we must first seek to be honest with ourselves. We must discern between what we want to believe and the truth. What has happened repeatedly to Donald Trump is a case in point. The demagogues have charged The Donald with being politically incorrect.

What is the latest example of the Donald being politically incorrect? Donald Trump is now calling for an end to all Muslim immigration into the United States.

In a written statement late Monday afternoon, the Trump campaign said the Republican frontrunner wanted a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” As backing, Trump cited a controversial six-month-old survey from the right-wing Center for Security Policy finding that one-quarter of U.S. Muslim respondents believed that violence against Americans was justified as part of global jihad and that a slim majority “agreed that Muslims in America should have the choice of being governed according to Shariah.” (from here)

Predictably, the establishment immediately charged the Donald with extremism. Of course, that included the RINOs.

Condemnations from Republicans quickly followed. Jeb Bush tweeted that Trump had become “unhinged.” John Kasich said Trump’s “outrageous divisiveness” was more reason why he was “entirely unsuited” to be president. Senator Lindsey Graham, a long-shot Republican rival, tweeted that Trump had “gone from making absurd comments to being downright dangerous with his bombastic rhetoric.” (from here)

In fact, as The Washington Times reported the criticism was international (Donald Trump defiant as Muslim ban draws widespread condemnation), but when The Donald stood his ground his rankings went up in the polls (here). What is politically correct may be what our elites demand, be it is not what many of us want.

Think about that constant refrain.

The terrorists have hijacked Islam. Most Muslims are not terrorists.

What happens if a Conservative starts to explain what the Koran says? Don’t we get told the Koran is like the Bible and the Bible says bad things too? Don’t we get told this by people who have never read either Koran or the Bible? So how do the politically correct know what they are talking about? How do they even know which people are the true followers of Islam? They don’t. They have no way of knowing whether the radical Islamists represent the true spirit of Islam. Afraid Muslims will hear, they may also not care to tell us what they really think.

When The Donald proposed to ban immigration from Muslim nations, the PC crowd raised the hue and cry that such discrimination based upon creed is unconstitutional. It isn’t. If it wanted to do so, Congress could exclude immigrants based upon their creed. However, our leaders cannot be trusted to discriminate based upon creed. So we probably don’t want to do that. Hence Senator Rand Paul offered up another option.

The Senate overwhelmingly rejected an amendment offered by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)last week that would have suspended visas to the U.S. from “high risk” countries until new enhanced security processes are in place.

Paul’s amendment would have designated 33 countries as “high risk” and placed moratoriums on refugee resettlement and visa issuance to nationals from those countries until the Secretary of State, Secretary of Homeland Security, and Director of National Intelligence certify and new processes to identify security risks.

The 33 countries included: Afghanistan, Algeria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Egypt, Eritrea, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia,Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Yemen, and the Palestinian Territories. (continued here)

As stupid as it sounds, our political elites refuse to restrict immigration. Period. No matter what! Hence their charges against Trump are just a smoke screen.

So why are our political elites so adamantly determined to keep our borders open and admit hordes of immigrants? The obvious answer is money. If you have capital assets in the United States, cheap labor makes those assets more profitable. For the sake of short term profit, our elites have deliberately chosen to ignore is the longcost to our country. We risk extreme violence, violence of the sort much of Europe may soon experience on a massive scale. In fact, at this point our elites may just be terrified of pissing off the Muslims in Europe.

What are the stakes? To help us appreciate what a full blown clash of cultures looks like, in the The Next King Phillip’s War James Atticus Bowden takes us back to 17th century America.

The King Philip’s War (1675-1676) was the bloodiest war – per capita – in America. Twice as many casualties as a portion of the population than our American Civil War (a.k.a. The Recent Unpleasantness)! Seven times more bloody that WW II – FYI – for all “Greatest Generation” fans. Consider what happened and could happen again. (continued here).

Instead of hordes of people from a primitive culture settling into a more advanced society, the Stone Age Indians tribes in the New England area had to contend with English Pilgrims and Puritans. Inevitably, the local Indians and the Pilgrim/Puritan coalition clashed, and the Indians lost their lands and their way of life.

In retrospect, because the blood thirst of both the Indians and the Englishmen they fought is nearly forgotten, we now pity the poor Indians. Yet for the sake of our children it is also important we remember the lesson. The Pilgrims and the Puritans never had any intention of assimilating and becoming Indians. Yet, had it been feasible, there are some advantages to the life of hunter-gatherer. The Pilgrims and the Puritans had to work very hard, and the life of a hunter-gatherer was a bit easier, but the Pilgrims and the Puritans had not come to the New World to be Indians. They had come to be Pilgrims and Puritans.

Now the United States is being settled by Peoples from all over the world. Because of their associations with rabid terrorism, Muslims from the Middle East rank as the most strange and difficult immigrants. Hence, we have politicians calling for a stop of immigration from countries with terrorists, principally Muslim lands.

However, terrorism is only the visible tip of the problem. Unlike previous legions of immigrants, many recent immigrants have either entered the United States illegally or they have overstayed their visas (also illegal). Therefore, we have millions of people in our country who have no right to be here. Weirdly, we are even giving many of these people welfare and free public services. Unfortunately, their connections to and their loyalty to the United States is dubious at best. Given the continuing rate at which such people are arriving, we should expect many of these people will not assimilate. Instead, as the Pilgrims and the Puritans did in the 17th century, they may insist upon retaining their own culture and allegiances to the nations from which they came. They made even insist upon their own laws, like Sharia. Hence, when Donald Trump speaks about immigration, people listen.

Other Examples of Political Incorrectness

The are three big areas where political correctness tends to become an issue, discrimination based upon race, sex, and creed. The example above relates to discrimination based upon creed.  What about race and sex?

Here is an example of political correctness running amuck based upon racial discrimination.

Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid on Thursday blasted Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia for uttering what he called “racist ideas” from the bench of the nation’s highest court.

Scalia on Wednesday suggested it’s possible that some black students would benefit from being at a “slower-track school” instead of the University of Texas’ flagship campus in Austin, where Scalia suggested some of those students are “being pushed ahead in classes that are too fast for them.” Scalia made the comment while the court heard arguments in an affirmative action case. (continued here)

Scalia’s crime? He questioned whether “affirmative action” is “good” racial discrimination. Given that the government is generally not suppose to discriminate based upon race, sex, or creed…… Is it possible that Democrats would also rather not talk about the quality of the intercity public schools that so many blacks attend?

Here is an example of political correctness running amuck based upon sexual discrimination. The subject is a December 3, 2015 article from the Center for Military Readiness (CMR).

Yesterday, President Barack Obama and Secretary Carter overruled the best professional advice of the U.S. Marine Corps in matters involving life, death, and national security.  Secretary Carter also broke his own promise to base his decision on the quality of scientific research behind the military services’ recommendations. (continued here)

For as long as human beings have fought in organized, military units, armies have deliberately excluded women. Has combat changed that much? That is the point of the CMR article. In spite of the desires of so-called feminists, women and men remain different, and sensible people cheer that difference. Why? Well, there is the pleasure of sexual intercourse, but there is also something far more serious, the greatest honor that any human being might have.

Most of us have the opportunity to bring one or more babies into the world. When we watch our children grow, we can love them and show them how to love, or we can set them adrift and go about our personal business. If we do what we are supposed to do, we can live life with a clear conscience. As we watch our children grow, we can also learn things about ourselves we would otherwise never know. And we will have a family who will care about us and help us hold ourselves together as the years pass.

For it is in giving that we receive. — Francis of Assisi

When we have children — when we each give the people in our families what they need — we must discriminate based upon sex. Sometimes even our government has no choice except to discriminate based upon sex.

Other Views

Who really needs our help?

THE VALUE OF SPEAKING UP

desperate-enough-yetMost of the time we should be quiet and listen. Because we don’t know very much, very few of us have much say. Yet there are times when we should say something. What is funny is how often we have to tell indiscreet elected officials to leave well enough alone.

THE MARSHALL MESSAGESee No Evil Republicans

Dear Friends:

Your calls and emails are having an impact on the Obama Trans-Pacific Partnership trade legislation contained in HR 1314, but we can’t stop now!

The two-part Obama Trade bill will be reconsidered Tuesday, June 16 in the House of Representatives to overcome a temporary setback for Obama.

The first vote was on Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA provision), which provided job retraining and other assistance to American workers who will lose jobs from the Obama Trade bill (HR 1314). If Obama’s Trade proposal is such a good deal, why will Americans lose jobs?

The TAA vote lost 126 Yeas to 306 Nays. Representatives Beyer, Comstock, Connolly, Hurt, Rigell vote YES. Representatives Brat, Forbes, Goodlatte, Griffith, Scott, Wittman voted NO.

The House then voted on the Trade Promotion Authority provision (TPA). That passed 219 Yeas, to 211 Nays. Representatives Beyer, Comstock, Connelly, Forbes, Goodlatte, Hurt, Rigell voted YES. Representatives Brat, Griffith, Scott, and Wittman voted NO. (Please thank these four Congressmen for their opposition.)

POLITICO notes that the TPA’s provisions are treated as national security secrets with tight restrictions on who can read the bill and under what conditions:

“If you want to hear the details of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal the Obama administration is hoping to pass, you’ve got to be a member of Congress, and you’ve got to go to classified briefings and leave your staff and cellphone at the door.

If you’re a member who wants to read the text, you’ve got to go to a room in the basement of the Capitol Visitor Center and be handed it one section at a time, watched over as you read, and forced to hand over any notes you make before leaving.

And no matter what, you can’t discuss the details of what you’ve read.”

Congressman Dave Brat, commenting on the TPA bill, said: “fatal conceit is to think that I’m smart enough to walk in a room and read 400 pages of legalese and believe it and know everything that’s in a trade bill that’s 400 pages long and digest it with everything that can go wrong … Ask your congressmen to explain to you what they know about it. And if they don’t tell you anything, say, I don’t trust the current regime. And I want a no vote out of you.”

Senator Sessions (R-AL) responded to the mixed vote on the Obama Trade bills:
“A vote for TAA next week is a vote to send fast-track to the President’s desk and to grant him these broad new executive authorities. … it will empower the President to form a Pacific Union encompassing 40 percent of the world’s economy and 12 nations—each with one equal vote. “Once the union is formed, foreign bureaucrats will be required to meet regularly to write the Commission’s rules, regulations, and directives—impacting Americans’ jobs, wages, and sovereignty. The union is chartered with a ‘Living Agreement,’ and there is no doubt it will seek to expand its membership and reach over time.

Fast-track … can expedite an unlimited number of yet-unseen international compacts for six years. … which includes labor mobility among more than 50 nations, further eroding the ability of the American people to control their own affairs. …The same people projecting the benefits of leaping into a colossal new economic union could not even accurately predict the impact of a standalone agreement with South Korea … which promised to boost our exports to them $10 billion, instead only budged them less than $1 billion, while South Korea’s imports to us increased more than $12 billion, nearly doubling our trading deficit. … opening our markets to foreign imports while allowing our trading partners to continue their non-tariff barriers that close their markets to ours.

If we want a new trade deal with Japan, or with Vietnam, then they should be negotiated bilaterally and sent to Congress under regular order. Under no circumstances should the House authorize, through fast-track, the formation of a new international commission that will regulate not only trade, but immigration, labor, environmental, and all manner of commercial policy.”

The vote on TAA will be on Tuesday, June 16th. Please let your Congressman know that you want to know how they voted, and that you will share how they vote with family and friends. Contact your representative by visiting the House of Representatives website and fill in your zip code in the top right corner to be connected to your Congressman’s website or contact the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121, ask for your Congressman by name and you will be connected. If you call ask to speak to either the Chief of Staff or the Legislative Assistant who handles Trade issues.

Thank you so much for your help!

Sincerely,

Delegate Bob Marshall

P.S. If you would like to donate you can do so below or if you’d like to volunteer to help my campaign you can do so at my website at www.DelegateBob.com

Because Marshall is a Conservative, he is rarely indiscreet. He has taken the time to understand why things are as the are. He also displays an understanding that his job is about serving the people of Virginia, not his own ambitions.

We have an election coming up in November, as is usual here in Virginia. In Prince William County, we will be electing our delegate and senator to the General Assembly. In addition, we will be filling all the elected offices in our county. So as Marshall suggests, if we want to make a difference in the outcome, there is no time like the present.