Thursday, March 30, 2017

Easter Sunday Brings a New Model Stroller to Chicago



Courtesy of the Second City Cop website. SCC should be part of your regular, internet viewing day.

Look for this new, safer way to take your little one for a walk in the increasingly dangerous streets of Chicago. 


And We Thought Blond Females Were Dumb!

Hat Tip to Jerry Todd

Finally, it just had to come to this sooner or later!

Blond Men

A blond man is in the bathroom and his wife shouts: "Did you find the shampoo? "He answers, "Yes, but I'm not sure what to do... it's for dry hair, and I've just wet mine."

A blond man spies a letter lying on his doormat. It says on the envelope, "DO NOT BEND ." He spends the next 2 hours trying to figure out how to pick it up.
------------------------------ ------
A blond man shouts frantically into the phone, "My wife is pregnant and her contractions are only two minutes apart!""Is this her first child?" asks the doctor.
"No!" he shouts, "this is her husband!"
 ------------------------------ ---
A blond man is in jail, the guard looks in his cell and sees him hanging by his feet."Just WHAT are you doing?" he asks."Hanging myself," the blond replies.
"The rope should be around your neck," says the guard.
"I tried that," he replies, "but then I couldn't breathe."
 ------------------------------ ------
An Italian tourist asks a blond man: "Why do scuba divers always fall backwards off their boats?"
To which the blond man replies: "If they fell forward, they'd still be in the boat."
 ------------------------------ --------
 A friend told the blond man: "Christmas is on a Friday this year."
The blond man answered, "Let's hope it's not the 13th."
 ------------------------------ ------
Two blond men find three grenades, and they decide to take them to a police station.
One asks, "What if one explodes before we get there?"
The other says, "We'll lie and say we only found two."

------------------------------ ------
 A woman phoned her blond neighbor man and said, "Close your curtains the next time you and your wife are having sex. 
 The whole street was watching and laughing at you yesterday."
 To which the blond man replied, "Well the joke's on all of you because I wasn't even at home yesterday.” 

“President” Kamala Harris Denounces Judge Gorsuch for using CONSTITUTION for Decisions

The following piece was published in the California Political Review


By Nate Madden    3/24

Freshman Senator Kamala Harris, D-Calif., might have one of the most disturbing – albeit increasingly common – arguments against Trump’s Supreme Court nominee yet: He’s not a judicial activist.

Friday morning, the former Golden State attorney general made known that she wouldn’t support Judge Neil Gorsuch to replace Justice Antonin Scalia because he “has consistently valued legalisms over real lives.” 
Kamala Harris

Judge Gorsuch has consistently valued narrow legalisms over real lives. I cannot support his nomination.https://t.co/ocDD7DvKnd

— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) March 24, 2017

Naturally, the idea that a judge ought not be more concerned with the application of the law, rather than its outcome, raised some eyebrows.

 “Legalisms” is like the complaint about constitutional rights being “technicalities”

— Ed Krayewski (@edkrayewski) March 24, 2017

Once upon a time, a judge was supposed to care about “legalisms.”


— Nick Pappas (@NickAPappas) March 24, 2017

Harris links to her recent op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle, where the senator seeks to paint Trump’s nominee in the same league as the Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz, a creature desperately in search of a heart.   
Judge Gorsuch and wife Marie Louise

The implication? Our jurists should be more concerned with emotions and outcomes versus faithful application of the law, and Neil Gorsuch is a big meanie-head.

But that supposedly absent heart debuted on the judge’s sleeve during the hearings. Faced with such questions and accusations multiple times this hearing, the answer or implication thereof has been simple: He didn’t like the outcome, but that’s the law as written (i.e., his job). If legislators don’t like it, change the law or pass a new one.

In her defense, Senator Harris is quite new to her position and may not quite be used to the job of a federal legislator, but she and the 534 members of Congress have the power to change laws and outcomes they don’t like. It’s all lined out in Article I of the Constitution.

But rather than embrace her role as a legislator and Gorsuch’s as a judge, Harris opts to openly defend judicial activism and cite it as the definitive reason for fighting his confirmation, quoting Thurgood Marshall’s aphorism to “do what you think is right and let the law catch up.”  
Trump nominates Gorsuch

One only wonders what any of the founders would think of that statement from a member of the “weakest branch of government,” or the use of it to defend bench legislation by a U.S. Senator. Well, they wouldn’t like it.

As stated concisely by attorney T. Greg Doucette, “I’m sure there are intellectually honest reasons to oppose Gorsuch. ‘Legalisms over real lives – for a judge – is not one of them.”



Wednesday, March 29, 2017

What Does the World Need More Of?



 Hat Tip to Suzanne Eovaldi and Rodger Graham

By Lawrence W. Reed   2/7/17

About 30 years ago, I came across a few sentences labeled “The World Needs More.” They might have appeared in Readers’ Digest, I’m not sure and the author was noted as “Anonymous.” I’ve tried many times in the decades since to find the author’s name, but to no avail. Whoever wrote those original three or four sentences was on to something important and they’ve spurred me to revise and extend them into a much longer piece. I’ve shared them with audiences all over the world, most recently at a Georgia Public Policy Foundation in Atlanta in November 2016. Invariably, people in great numbers approach me afterwards to ask, “May I get a copy of that?”

This little essay expresses well the message of personal character that we at FEE (Foundation for Economic Education) regard as crucial to freedom and happiness. Indeed, I’ve stressed on numerous occasions that freedom and character are two sides of the same coin. Societies cannot possess one without the other and no society that ever lost its character kept its freedoms. This is a message that comes through loud and clear, I believe, in my recent book, Real Heroes: Inspiring True Stories of Courage, Character and Conviction, which has proved to be quite popular here in the US and abroad.

If you are inspired by this essay to be a better example to those around you, or if you can put it to use to inspire others to self-improvement, you will totally make my day. Here it is:

_______

The world needs more men and women who do not have a price at which they can be bought; who do not borrow from integrity to pay for expediency; who have their priorities straight and in proper order; whose handshake is an ironclad contract; who are not afraid of taking risks to advance what is right; who stand for what’s true and not simply what they think others will fall for; and who are honest in all matters, large and small.

The world needs more men and women whose ambitions are big enough to include others; who know how to win with grace and lose with dignity; who do not believe that shrewdness and cunning and ruthlessness are the three keys to success; who still have friends they made twenty or thirty years ago; who put principle and consistency above politics or personal advancement; and who are not afraid to go against the grain of popular opinion.

The world needs more men and women who are humble enough to realize that planning their own lives is a full-time challenge and are therefore not foolish enough to think they can plan the lives or the economy of millions of others. They don’t regard the central government as the highest authority. The world needs more men and women unafraid to take responsibility, adult enough to accept accountability, courageous enough to speak truth to power, and smart enough to express gratitude to others when they deserve it.

The world needs more men and women who are tolerant of the differences that make people the unique individuals they are; who don’t feel threatened by opinions or lifestyles or faiths of others who are otherwise peaceful and respectful in their conduct; who are patient enough to win over others through persuasion, not force; who don’t demand that politicians improve their lot in life by diminishing that of another; who understand that adding value through production, innovation and service is a far higher calling than redistributing the property of others at gunpoint.

The world needs more men and women who do not forsake what is right just to get consensus because it makes them look good; who know how important it is to lead by example, not by barking orders; who would not have you do something they would not do themselves; who work to turn even the most adverse circumstances into opportunities to learn and improve; who muster the integrity to work for a living instead of voting for one, and who love even those who have done some injustice or unfairness to them. The world, in other words, needs more men and women who possess those traits honored by time, experience and good sense and that we collectively call personal character.

The U.S. Is Not A Democracy. It’s A Republic if You Can Keep It. Part 5



By Mark Herr, CSG Administrative Staff

In parts 1 through 4, we learned the U.S. is a republican structure of government. Continuing on with the airplane analogy, our system contains a variety of control cockpits, or the best parts of various forms of government. For example, our system contains one aspect of democracy: voting once per year for five minutes; monarchy: U.S. president for four years; oligarchy: most school boards for four years.

We also learned the architects reserved structural maintenance solely and exclusively in the hands of the governed – remember Mrs. Eliza Powel? After our introduction to her, we should be inspired to learn the U.S. republican structure, recruit a local maintenance crew, and start ‘keeping it.’  
Language of Liberty

It is worth repeating the ‘airplane’ metaphor. At present, the Left-side passengers are extremely angry with and ‘resisting’ the Right-side pilot for the direction he is taking the plane (the country). These same passengers, fueled by contempt for the Right side, are verbally condoning violence against the Right-side passengers and pilot. They hate the pilot for turning the plane to the right and the passengers on the Right side for supporting the pilot.

On the other side of the aircraft, the Right-side passengers, in contempt for the Left side, enthusiastically support the pilot for turning the plane to the right. They are even exuberant that their pilot has control. Some on the Right will blindly follow the pilot no matter how erratically he flies the plane, as did the Left when their pilot was in the cockpit.

Ironically, an aircraft is one of the safest places above the earth when it is airborne. Just as any airplane must overcome gravity, our U.S. republic must overcome human nature to fly. While ‘airborne,’ it functions much like a monarchy or oligarchy – the pilots have 100% control – or at least that is our perception. Many times, we perceive that we are completely at the mercy of the pilot’s control – turning the plane Left or Right – and one side of the plane or the other would say in the wrong direction. We wrongly conclude this is the same thing as the government crashing.

In fact, fixing (or keeping) the structural integrity of the government is more important than turning the aircraft Left or Right. This is a radical concept and will require a major paradigm shift on the part of the American governed to achieve stability.

Truly, the structure of our U.S. republic is quite unique. The architects separated the powers and the controls within the structure. These structural designs were made to prevent any one natural born person from single-handedly controlling the entire system. Thomas Jefferson said, “The way to have safe and good government is not to trust it to one…[but] by dividing and sub-dividing these republics from the great national one…”

The federal government is separated from the State government – each has separate jurisdictions and constitutions. And within States, further sub-divisions are made in counties, cities or towns and the like. You probably already knew that federal and State legislative, executive and judicial powers were separated. But did you know that County and City powers are as well?

Within each compartment of power, the ‘cockpit’ controls were also separated. Do you often find yourself saying that the governor of your State has all the Executive power? This is not the case! For example, Washington and California separate the control of executive power into more than 8 executives.

While State governors may control a majority of executive power, they do not control one hundred percent of it! The same holds true at the County level. Most will say the County board/council (i.e. commissioners, supervisors or freeholders) control executive power. In fact, it is the Sheriff, the Assessor, the Treasurer, the Clerk, etc. who control executive power. The County board controls legislative power.

These separations are described in the federal, state, county, and city constitutions or charters (or in some cases, state law). The maintenance of those separations is solely and exclusively in the hands of the governed. We must learn these fixed boundaries in their written form. It is vitally important to visualize the structure and make a habit of maintaining its boundaries, especially in our language.

Troubleshooting the system requires an understanding of when the governments, powers, and controls are being combined or separated – not just when an issue or a government official’s actions affects or hurts us. For example, Regional government was added early in the 20th Century to combine governments, powers and controls, while re-training local governors to administer and enforce federal policies and finances. It was not added for the governed. Regional government was added by the governors, of the governors, and for the governors.

In another example, School government was added to the Federal framework in the late 19th Century to dis-associate the governed from their maintenance responsibilities. As a by-product, the governed are re-trained to function as if living in a democracy. Left/Right passengers in economy class fight over the peanuts (issues) and periodically enter the cockpit for five minutes to select a pilot (vote).

It is important to remember that electing a pilot to turn the plane Left or Right is not the same activity as fixing or maintaining the aircraft of the U.S. republic. Rest assured, structural integrity is more important than selecting a Left/Right pilot or even getting our so-called 'peanut' rights from the flight crew.

The time has come for the governed to recognize our maintenance responsibilities as a legitimate and essential social activity - an activity deserving our utmost attention to detail. First, we must learn the U.S. republican structure. Then, recruit a local maintenance crew to troubleshoot it. And finally, with our crew, fix it.

Ben Franklin’s instruction to Mrs. Powel is still essential today. We have been given a Republic – and we are entrusted to keep it!


Mark Herr, Co-founder and President of Center for Self Governance, was born in England to a military father and was raised in South Korea. He is a retired Air Force veteran who served his entire career in Tokyo, Japan.  Herr holds a BS in marketing & management and a MBA in finance & information systems.  As a social and political scientist, Mark devotes 289 days per year, nationwide, to studying and teaching State Constitution, Regional government, City-County government, training citizens and legislators in applied civics, and teaching high school students foundational civics. He is co-authoring the book "Speaking the Language of Liberty”.

The Language of Liberty series is a collaborative effort of the Center for Self Governance (CSG) Administrative Team.  The authors include administrative staff, selected students, and guest columnists. The views expressed by the authors are their own and may not reflect the views of CSG.  Contact them at info@tncsg.org. To learn more, go to CenterForSelfGovernance.com.