Sunday, March 31, 2013

Ancient History and Modern Constitutional Powers of American Sheriffs (Part 1/2)

Ancient History and Modern Constitutional Powers of American Sheriffs (Part 1/2)

Ancient History and Modern Constitutional Powers of American Sheriffs (Part 1/2)

- Kelly OConnell (Bio and Archives)  Tuesday, March 26, 2013
(5) Comments | Print friendly | Subscribe | Email Us

Can America’s sheriffs save our Constitution and our precious liberties? The exhaustive history of the sheriff has yet to be written, but much is known of the rise of these county leaders, once called shire reeves, in old England. Sheriffs are termed the “the oldest appointment of the English crown.” They represent transition from simple local rule to a nationalized attempt at keeping law and order. Sheriffs were first established when the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms were finally assembled into the Wessex-based Kingdom of England sometime around 1000 AD.
In the Colonies, the Crown established sheriffs, as done in Britain by royal decree. But, before long, the democratic process was employed to elect them. Today, they are the last bastion of popular representation in law enforcement. Ironically, it now appears that the ancient sheriff, the last representative of popular, local federalism—might be the last chance for America to retain our civil liberties before the onslaught of Leviathan—the colossus of government tyranny. This hope is best represented by the Oath Keepers, a group educating and supporting local sheriffs as defenders of our Constitution against creeping federal insurgency. Add to this the doctrine of Nullification, or refusal to apply unconstitutional laws, which sheriffs are now applying across America on various topics, such as gun regulations, and refusing federal demand for control.
This article is composed in two parts to better describe the history, function and constitutional warrant of the local, county American sheriff.

I. What is a Sheriff

A sheriff is the main peace keeper of a county in both ancient England and modern America. The office is defined by Webster’s:
In the U.S., the chief law-enforcement officer for the courts in a county. He is ordinarily elected, and he may appoint a deputy. The sheriff and his deputy have the power of police officers to enforce criminal law and may summon private citizens (the posse comitatus, or “force of the county”) to help maintain the peace. The main judicial duty of the sheriff is to execute processes and writs of the courts. Officers of this name also exist in England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. In England the office of sheriff existed before the Norman Conquest (1066).

II. Ancient History of the Sheriff—Britain

The office of sheriff is said to be “the oldest appointment of the English crown.” The term Sheriff is derived from the ancient British designate “shire reeve.” A shire is an English term defined by the Free Dictionary as: “A former administrative division of Great Britain, equivalent to a county.” The term reeve is defined by Webster’s as: “a local administrative agent of an Anglo-Saxon king,” or “a medieval English manor officer responsible chiefly for overseeing the discharge of feudal obligations.”

A. History of the Shire Reeves

Thomas Jefferson claimed of the office of sheriff: “there is no honorable law enforcement authority in Anglo-American law so ancient as that of the county sheriff whose role as a peace officer goes back at least to the time of Alfred the Great.”
To the contrary, Schenectady, NY Sheriff Buffardi offers this history of the beginnings of sheriffs in England to about 1000 AD, where groups of men—called hundreds, were assembled for defensive and taxation purposes:
The office of sheriff did not appear suddenly. It’s prolonged development began over 1000 years ago in England, arising simultaneously as local government structure evolved. This form of government allowed early English people to be divided into smaller units subject to the considerations of a national interest and central authority of the king. The formation of the units was crucial to the central authority because the population was scattered and Saxon kings had no large standing armies, a centralized court system, or the ability to finance a government appropriately. The small unit management therefore became crucial to a national development of government.
While these shires (counties) were in the developmental and refinement stage, a custodian was chosen by the fellow members of the hundreds to be their “gerefa” or guardian. Later this title was to become known as “reeve”. The combination of the unit known as scir or shire and the administrative title of reeve would eventually develop into the word “sheriff”. With the exception of king, no English institution is older than this office. The earliest mention of a position somewhat like a sheriff was in the 970s during the reign of King Edgar.
Wessex King Cnut wrote a letter with one of the earliest uses of the term “sheriff” in 1027, mentioning abuses already associated with the office:
I command all the sheriffs and reeves over my whole kingdom, as they wish to retain my friendship and their own safety, that they employ no unjust force against any man neither rich nor poor, but all men of noble or humble birth shall have the right to enjoy just law, from which there is to be no deviation in any way, neither on account of the royal favour nor out of respect for any powerful man, nor in order to amass money for me.

III. The Rise of the Sheriff

Theodore Frank Thomas Plucknett describes “The Rise of the Sheriff,” in his masterpiece A Concise History of the Common Law. He explains how the creation of England in the early 10th century began with the unified Heptarchy which evolved into the Wessex-based Kingdom of England. This Anglo-Saxon Crown then began seek greater control by connecting with local institutions. The shire, ie county, was an ancient petty kingdom, represented by an alderman by way of the old royal families. These naturally tended to be resistant to modern, kingly centralization. To combat this resistance, the king sent a reeve to stand besides the alderman and represent his position. Plucknett describes this evolution:
Duties of the king’s reeve were very miscellaneous, including both administration and judicial business. It was inevitable as time went on the King’s reeve should grow in importance at the expense of the alderman, and that finally he should take the alderman’s place and become the principal officer of the shire under the name of “sheriff” or “shire reeve”.
As mentioned by Cnut, sheriffs over the years were accused of various acts of tyranny, and the king was forced to limit his power by keeping appointments to one year, and also demand an accounting afterward. Plucknett describes the battle for power between the burgeoning sheriffs and the crown:
At the time of the Norman Conquest the sheriff, as the King’s representative, enjoyed much judicial power, causing the Crown great anxiety, for there was no effective means of controlling him, except an occasional remedy of discharging him when popular unrest grew too strong. A number of attempts were made to find a check upon his powers as a royal judge. Sometimes the Crown appointed a permanent justiciar to sit in the county; the office of coroner was developed in order to serve as a check upon the sheriff; by the Great Charter (Magna Carta) it was finally declared no sheriff should for the future hold pleas of the Crown. This definitive solution robbed the sheriff of a great deal of his ancient power…

IV. Sheriff’s Consolidation of Power: The Tourn & Justicial Debt Collection

A. Biennial Tourn

The sheriff’s began to take on greater powers, by taking on bailiffs, absorbing tax powers, and quite often also acting as judges, according to Plucknett:
Sheriffs secured control over the hundred by appointing bailiffs. His influence further increased by means of the “Sheriff’s Tourn”. Twice a year local meetings were held, attended by the sheriff or his deputy, at which there came to meet him the reeve and his four best men to undergo a searching examination at his hands. They laid before them the most suspicious members of their community; those suspected of grave matters were arrested by the sheriff and held for the King’s Justice, while less serious offenders were amerced by the sheriff. By the close of the middle ages the Justices of the Peace took over for the tourns.

B. Sheriff as Judge & Debt Collector

Pucknett explains how the sheriff’s also were involved in collecting debts:
Another jurisdiction was exercised by the sheriff in the county court in virtue of a royal writ addressed to him, beginning with the word iusticies, “do justice upon” the defendant “so that rightly and without delay he render” to the plaintiff, e.g. a debt which he owes. Other writs were also “viscontial”, giving the sheriff jurisdiction, although not drawn in the form justicies. The implication seems clearly that down to the middle of the 13th century a large part of the nation’s litigation was in the county court. In this type of proceeding the sheriff was a judge in the modern sense, and the county court was merely the occasion upon which he exercised his jurisdiction. So complicated a situation could only result in confusion, and in fact it is very difficult to disentangle the two branches; The classical doctrine as described by Coke makes the suitors judges of the court in almost all cases. Thus was fulfilled the ancient policy of the crown in reducing the judicial importance of the sheriff at every possible opportunity.

V. Collapse of Sheriff’s Power: Evolution to Penal Reformer

A. Sheriff Howard, Prison Rehabilitator

Buffardi explains how the British sheriff’s power ebbed, and yet—as they still controlled prisons, they humanized the institution. Here, they exerted a mighty influence to help reform these terrible structures into more humane places.
Since the 16th century, the duties of sheriffs in England dealt chiefly with judicial issues, enforcement of debt, and service of process. John Howard, high sheriff of Bedfordshire, became a social activist for penal reform. He exercised the traditional, but usually neglected responsibility of visiting prisons and institutions. He was shocked at the conditions, particularly that jailers received no salary but made their living from prisoners in the form of fees. Many prisoners who had been discharged by the court system still remained in custody because they could not pay the discharge fees owed to their jailers.
Howard inspected prisons, prison ships, and houses of corrections throughout Europe and the US, finding all the facilities overcrowded, undisciplined, dirty, and ridden with disease. Thousands of prisoners were dying annually of diseases. Howard’s graphic descriptions of prison conditions horrified the English people. In 1779, he drafted the “Penitentiary Act,” based upon principles of secure and clean facility. Howard believed prison should not just be a place for industry and labor but also a place for contrition and penitence—a place that reformed inmates through the inculcation of good habits and religious instruction. All prisoners were to have healthy diets, access to conveniences that allowed for good hygiene, and all prisoners were to be provided with uniforms.

B. Decline of British Sheriffs & Rise of American

According to Buffardi, around the time of the development of the American sheriff, the English equivalent began to decline:
Since mid-16th century until the present, England’s sheriffs have had little political clout or government importance compared to the wealth of power enjoyed during medieval times. The justice of the peace relieved the last vestiges of the position’s former judicial duties. The Lord’s Lieutenant removed its military importance and appointment powers of the office were taken away from the king and transferred to parliament. This removed all of the king’s previous opportunity for political patronage, once so important to the position. The serious decline of the office might have been the death of the sheriff if it had not been for England’s colonization. Finding new life on different soil would allow this faltering office to flourish in a transplanted environment. Invigorated in the New World, the office of sheriff would find a whole new potential.


The fascinating rise and decline of the British sheriff foreshadows next week’s history of the American sheriff and their still-undiminished importance as local law-keeper and defender of the Constitution.

Ancient History and Modern Constitutional Powers of American Sheriffs (Part 2/2)

- Kelly OConnell (Bio and Archives)  Sunday, March 31, 2013

This essay offers the second part of the history of the American sheriff. The first essay contained a history of the original sheriffs—England’s shire reeves— “the oldest appointment of the English crown.” America’s own sheriffs are a continuation of Britain’s, after which the British variety lost almost all of its power as the US type blossomed.
Now that the federal government has announced ambitions to limit gun rights, amongst many other new powers, a constitution-oriented group of sheriffs—the Oath Keepers—has decided to nullify these laws instead of applying them. It is quite possible that these Rogue Sheriffs represent the last vestiges of federalism and separation of powers meant to protect the citizens from an American tyranny. It is therefore quite fitting that the old West, independent lawman is being revived and updated to help save the American Republic. This article describes their rise, establishment and continuation as perhaps the last bulwark against Washington, DC tyranny.

I. History of Sheriffs of America

A. First American Lawmen—Marshals

After the position of the sheriff in England became the supreme local power, and England grew in global might, the sheriff became an important position throughout the British Empire. Yet the first US law official was not the sheriff, but a marshal in the Chesapeake Colonies, according to the Corrections History website:
The government that took hold in the American colonies was in many respects an adaptive form of English government. The first form of law enforcement on the continent was not the sheriff but provost marshals and marshals who operated under a central authority for military matters from 1625 to 1627.

B. Virginia’s First US Sheriff

This is how sheriffs came to be established in the USA:
In 1634, Virginia was divided by statute into eight shires, or counties. Along with the shire form of government came the administrative position of sheriff. William Stone became the first sworn sheriff in America when he was appointed the sheriff in the County of Accomac. The first sheriffs and other county officials in Virginia were selected from exclusive groups of large land holders within the counties. They were typically the most influential men and were able to hold more than one county office capacity at a time. William Stone served two consecutive terms in 1634 and 1635 and also served as a county commissioner during most of this interval. In 1648, after a distinguished multiple career in local government, Stone moved to Maryland where he was appointed governor by Lord Baltimore.
More specifically, William E. Nelson, in The Common Law in Colonial America, Vol. 1: The Chesapeake and New England 1607-1660, says about the first American sheriffs:
The General Court and the Assembly, as early as 1629, defined petty criminal jurisdiction to encompass “the conservation of the peace so far as is belonging to the Quarter Sessions of the Justices in England, life only excepted.” Three years later, the Governor gave the local monthly courts “the same power as justices of the Peace” in criminal cases, and in civil cases required the courts “to proceed according to the laws of England [in] all causes under ¬£5” sterling. Then, in 1634, Virginia was divided into eight counties, and each of the local monthly courts became county courts. Again there was reference to the counties functioning “the same as in England”; in particular, the General Court provided that “as in England sheriffs” were to be chosen in each county and “to have the same power as there.” The decision to define the powers of local institutions by reference to English law is pivotal to the analysis presented here.

C. A Democratically Elected Sheriff

Following the democratic model, America’s first elected sheriff was William Waters, described here in The Northampton County record of 1651:
That this day Leift. Wm. Waters a gent. Accordige to the Instruccons directed to ye Comissions & Inhabitants of this County By Pluralitye of voyces was nominated & made choyce of to be high sherr of Northampton Counties from this present daye dureinge ye accustomed tyme.
Sheriff Roger Scott, Dekalb County, Illinois outlines developments of the early American sheriff:
The sheriff’s office in America was much less social, had less judicial influence, and was much more responsive to individuals than the English Sheriff. The duties of the early American Sheriff were similar in many ways to its English forerunner, centering on court related duties such as security and warrants, protection of citizens, maintaining the jail, and collecting taxes. As the nation expanded westward, the Office of Sheriff continued to be a significant part of law enforcement. The elected sheriff is part of America’s democratic fabric. In 1776 Pennsylvania and New Jersey adopted the Office of Sheriff in their Constitution. The Ohio Constitution called for the election of the county sheriff in 1802, and then state-by-state, the democratic election of sheriff became not only a tradition, but in most states a constitutional requirement. In the United States today, of the 3083 sheriffs, approximately 98% are elected by the citizens of their counties or parishes.

II. Evolution of American Sheriffs

A. Old West Sheriffs

As time passed, the American sheriffs moved west and evolved in their roles. The sheriff in the old West of America took on extraordinary importance, says Sheriff Buffardi. In 1836, the newly created Constitution of the Republic of Texas formally established these positions:
There shall be appointed for each county, a convenient number of Justices of the Peace, one sheriff, and one coroner, who shall hold their offices for two years, to be elected by qualified voters of the district or county, as Congress may direct. Justices of the Peace and sheriffs shall be commissioned by the President [of the Republic].
For the most part, the office of sheriff continues in the State of Texas mostly as in 1836. Buffardi writes that other places in the West established sheriffs similar to Texas, including California. Isolated areas of the West typically had a sheriffs. By 1861, Colorado laws evolved to an elected sheriff in even its most remote counties, and Wyoming had Governor appointed sheriffs. The Posse Comitatus was established allowing county citizen conscription for law keeping. Typical duties for an old West sheriff included:
As chief law enforcement officer of the county, the sheriff performed diverse duties. In many jurisdictions he served as tax collector, similar to the duties of the colonial sheriff. Also in contrast to its colonial forerunner, the sheriff had to administer corporal punishment, as directed by the courts. The sheriff often times was required to carry out the sentence of death. Rustic executions in the Wild West were performed primarily by hanging an offender. Sometimes sheriffs constructed formal gallows for this purpose, and other times a rope was simply tossed over a stout tree limb to accomplish the execution. Other duties of the office, collateral to the crime fighting duties, were rather mundane and involved the service of process or other civil enforcement functions, that were performed usually under peaceful conditions. Some counties prescribed rather peculiar duties like inspecting cattle, fighting fires, or eradicating prairie dogs. No matter what the specific duties of a community required, universally by the later part of the nineteenth century, the sheriff occupied the preeminent position in law enforcement throughout the West.

B. Job Description of Modern Sheriff

The modern sheriff is found in 48 states, except for Alaska, while Hawaii has a deputy-sheriff. Buffardi describes their role:
The sheriff serves multiple functions, and the roles vary by jurisdiction. In general the roles are: conservator of the peace, jailer, court bailiff, server of court process, tax collector, and in some cases the county treasurer. The sheriff has statutory law enforcement responsibilities in all but nine of the 48 states that have a sheriff, and jail responsibilities in all but four states. According to a U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics profile in 1993, sheriffs employ a total of 224,236 personnel. About 9 in 10 sheriff’s departments have responsibility for investigating crimes. Departments in jurisdictions with a population of less than 100,000 are more likely to be responsible for investigating violent crimes than in larger jurisdictions. Departments serving a population of 500,000 to 999,999 are least likely to be the primary investigating agency within their jurisdiction for criminal matters

III. Constitutional Powers & Defiant Sheriffs

A. Federal Overreach

Many Americans are today worried with federal overreach on legislation and police powers. For example, the Rand Paul drone filibuster illustrated concern with safety of drone attacks against stateside Americans. American sheriffs are now standing up to this overreach with scintillating constitutional muscularity. This is occurring in the West, where US sheriffs have had their most memorable role.

B. Sheriffs Under US Constitution: 10th Amendment

A sheriff is the top elected local law enforcement official in a county. Upon entering office, they traditionally take an oath of office swearing to defend the Constitution. For example, here is the Polk County, FL Sheriff’s Oath:
I do solemnly swear that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution and Government of the United States, and of the State of Florida; that I am duly qualified to hold office under the Constitution of the State; and that I will well and faithfully perform the duties of Polk County Sheriff on which I am now about to enter. So help me God.
Most specifically, sheriffs find power under the Constitution in keeping with the Tenth Amendment, which reads:
Amendment 10 - Powers of the States and People
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

C. Federalist Papers #51: Madison on Separation of Powers

The position taken by most American sheriffs is that they, not the federal government, are the top law enforcement officials in their locale. This agrees with America’s doctrine of federalism, as described by Constitution author James Madison in Federalist Paper 51, The Structure of the Government Must Furnish the Proper Checks and Balances Between the Different Departments. This states:
In order to lay a due foundation for that separate and distinct exercise of the different powers of government, which to a certain extent is admitted on all hands to be essential to the preservation of liberty, it is evident that each department should have a will of its own; and consequently should be so constituted that the members of each should have as little agency as possible in the appointment of the members of the others. Were this principle rigorously adhered to, it would require that all the appointments for the supreme executive, legislative, and judiciary magistracies should be drawn from the same fountain of authority, the people, through channels having no communication whatever with one another.

D. Supreme Court’s Printz v. US: Limitations on Federal Power

Madison’s doctrine of Double Security was later cited by SCOTUS Justice Antonin Scalia, in the case Printz v. U.S. (521 U.S. 898), describing our type of government, with checks and balances:
The great innovation of this design was that “our citizens would have two political capacities, one state and one federal, each protected from incursion by the other…a legal system unprecedented in form and design, establishing two orders of government, each with its own direct relationship, its own privity, its own set of mutual rights and obligations to the people who sustain it and are governed by it…This separation of the two spheres is one of the Constitution’s structural protections of liberty: “Just as the separation and independence of the coordinate branches of the Federal Government serve to prevent the accumulation of excessive power in any one branch, a healthy balance of power between the States and the Federal Government will reduce the risk of tyranny and abuse from either front…In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and then the portion allotted to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself.”

IV. Sheriffs & the Doctrine of Constitutional Nullification

A. Nullification of Unconstitutional Law

Americans are becoming increasingly uncomfortable with the growing size and powers of government. Sheriffs are at the forefront of the activism against these depredations. Thomas E. Woods, Jr. penned Nullification: How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century to address the issue of how to fight back against federal encroachment into private and state matters. Thomas Jefferson introduced the concept of the remedy of “nullification” in his 1798 Kentucky Resolutions. Woods sums up the notion,
Nullification begins with the axiomatic point that a federal law that violates the Constitution is no law at all. It is void and of no effect. Nullification simply pushes this uncontroversial point a step further: if a law is unconstitutional and therefore void and of no effect, it is up to the states, the parties to the federal compact, to declare it so and thus refuse to enforce it. Nullification provides a shield between the people of a state and an unconstitutional law from the federal government. The central point behind nullification is that the federal government cannot be permitted to hold a monopoly on constitutional interpretation…
Woods comments upon how sheriffs are involved:
Another example of a state challenge to federal power is the Sheriffs First initiative, whereby, with a few exceptions, it would be a state crime for a federal law enforcement official to make an arrest or engage in a search or seizure without first receiving permission from the local sheriff. Locally elected sheriffs, who have some semblance of accountability to the people, might thereby be able to prevent some of the inevitable abuses that have accompanied the increasing centralization of law enforcement in the United States. Anyone concerned for the protection of civil liberties must find great appeal in this movement.

B. Oath Keepers: Alarmed Sheriffs & Acts of Defiance

At least ninety remarkable and intrepid US sheriffs have decided to take on the federal Leviathan and harpoon its outrageous forays attacking our constitutional defenses against tyranny. In The New American article Sheriffs Oppose Encroachment of Federal Agents Into Their Jurisdictions, a movement called the Oath Keepers is detailed:
The mission of Oath Keepers is to encourage members (current and former military and law enforcement) to uphold and protect the Constitution of the United States by refusing to carry out unlawful orders, including any that violate the enumerated powers granted to the federal government in the Constitution.
The Utah Sheriff’s Association on, January 19th, 2013, published the following open letter:
Dear President Obama
With the number of mass shootings America has endured, it is easy to demonize firearms; it is also foolish and prejudiced. Firearms are nothing more than instruments, valuable and potentially dangerous, but instruments nonetheless…We respect the Office of the President of the United States of America. But, make no mistake, as the duly-elected sheriffs of our respective counties, we will enforce the rights guaranteed to our citizens by the Constitution. No federal official will be permitted to descend upon our constituents and take from them what the Bill of Rights—in particular Amendment II—has given them. We, like you, swore a solemn oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, and we are prepared to trade our lives for the preservation of its traditional interpretation.


With an alarming growth in federal size and powers, and with unprecedented ignorance over American history and our kind of government, someone must stand up for our basic civil and natural rights. This has turned out to be the US sheriffs, who like their fearless western forbears, are ready to defend the American Constitution against all usurpation occurring at a local level. God bless and protect them.

State grants Secret Service vast new powers

State grants Secret Service vast new powers

State grants Secret Service vast new powers

Soon will be able to enforce Obama gun laws without sheriffs' help

A bill is heading to Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper’s desk that Republican lawmakers say would give members of the Secret Service broad arrest powers in the state and could provide a framework for federal agents eventually to enforce gun restrictions.
“This is absolutely insane,” Rep. Lori Saine, R-Dacono, said. “In theory if a Secret Service agent is in a county where the sheriff has refused to enforce some of the recent unenforceable gun laws, the agent could arrest an individual if he believes the law has been broken.”
The idea actually aligns with an Obama agenda to create vast new restrictions and regulations on guns. WND has reported that hundreds of sheriffs nationwide, including many in Colorado, have said they cannot enforce federal restrictions that would violate the Second Amendment.
In Colorado, Weld County Sheriff John Cooke said he and many other county sheriffs “won’t bother” with several laws poised to go into effect in Colorado because they would be impossible to enforce.
One of the laws would require private sellers to do a background check on purchasers in private gun transaction, but the sheriffs wonder how to keep track of whether gun owners are meeting the new requirements.
Cooke said many new gun laws are “feel-good, knee-jerk reactions that are unenforceable” and would “give a false sense of security.”
Cooke said he and other sheriffs are considering filing a lawsuit to block the laws. And sheriffs in other parts of the nation agree, with more than 340 already banding together to promise to uphold the U.S. Constitution.
The Colorado Legislature also passed a bill putting a 15-round limit on ammunition magazines.
What’s really RIGHT about America these days? Find out in “America the Beautiful” by Dr. Ben Carson.
The new bill regarding the Secret Service, SB-13-013, passed on a nearly party line vote in the Democrat-controlled House and is now awaiting the governor’s signature. The bill grants members of the Secret Service arrest powers by considering them to be a peace officer, putting them on a par with state law-enforcement officials with respect to arrest authority.
The legislation does not only apply to agents guarding the president or other government officials but also to special agents, uniformed division officers, physical security technicians, physical security specialists and special officers of the United States Secret Service.
Republican lawmakers say that when they asked why the bill was needed they were given a series of conflicting answers.
Sen. Kevin Lundberg, R-Berthoud, said he was told the purpose of the bill was to make it easier to hold a person for mental health reasons.
“When I asked in committee why they need this I was told it was so we can exercise 72-hour mental holds on our own citizens,” Lundberg said.
“I found it curious that this was the big reason they thought they needed it. Currently a police officer, doctor, psychiatrists, registered nurses and other professionals just on the strength of their word can say they want a person taken against their will and put in a mental institution for up to three business days, meaning it could be even longer if it was over the weekend, for an evaluation as to whether they are mentally sane or a danger to themselves or others.”
Sen. Vicki Marble, R-Fort Collins, said despite the bill being sponsored by a fellow Republican, the 72-hour mental hold caught the attention of several Republicans in the Senate.
“This was one of the big flags for us in the bill,” Marble said. “It’s very suspicious because we have the separation of federal, state and even the local police services. Everyone has their own jurisdiction, and there is a special reason for keeping federal agents away.
“No federal authority should have the ability to detain somebody for 72 hours,” she said. “If there is a legitimate reason for doing so for someone who is mentally ill, that should come at the local level where people in the community know one another.”
Marble said the mental hold was the reason the bill slipped under the radar.
“The mental health hold was what they testified to in committee, and that was the big thing they didn’t want to get out, but it does give them the authority to put that hold on people.”
Lundberg said the big concern is that the bill essentially places members of the Secret Service on an equal footing with law-enforcement, without being constrained by jurisdictional issues.
“If you look at the bill, it says they can operate alongside of local police authorities and function as equals you might say,” he said. “However, when you read it carefully it basically gives them state police power so whatever power a regular policeman such as the state patrol, sheriff’s office or local police has they will have also.”
However, in debate on the House side, Saine said she was given a different reason for why legislators needed to pass the bill.
“Rep. Jared Wright was talking about how when he was in committee he asked several times why they needed it, and the reason given was if there was a motorcade and something happened during the procession the Secret Service needed the authority to arrest the perpetrators,” Saine said.
“Then we were told by the sponsor that’s not it, it’s because they were going to help our local law enforcement and sheriffs with check and wire fraud. However, check and wire fraud are not mentioned anywhere in the bill,” she said.
The bill states that the agents are automatically granted peace officer status when several conditions apply. For instance, if the agent is responding to a non-federal felony or misdemeanor being committed in their presence, he has the full authority to arrest any Colorado citizen.
The bill also gives the Secret Service agents wide discretion to arrest citizens based merely on probable cause that a non-federal felony or misdemeanor involving injury or threat of injury to a person or property has been or is being committed.
Lundberg said one of the problems with bills like this is they start out by giving broad authority to a government agency or entity, then they place language later in the bill that appears to restrict that authority in an attempt to provide cover for those expressing alarm about the language.
“Often in laws like this they will give broad authority in one section, then later in another section they will have wording which appears to restrict the authority,” he explained. “Unlike the state’s law enforcement, the Secret Service would not have any jurisdictional concerns. Under this bill they can go anywhere in the state of Colorado regardless of jurisdiction.”
But Wright, a former law-enforcement official, told Marble the Secret Service told him their current policies would prohibit them from arresting Colorado citizens under the bill’s provisions.
“They told Jared that making an arrest of a Colorado citizen for a misdemeanor crime unrelated to their own duties would actually violate their own guidelines,” Marble said. “So his question was why are we passing a law that violates their own internal policies.”
In Texas, a Democrat in the state legislature has proposed a bill that would allow the state to remove an elected sheriff for refusing to enforce the law. The bill defines law as including any rule, regulation, executive order, court order, statute or constitutional provision.
After the passage of a several gun control laws, which would among other things restrict magazine size and prohibit private sales between individuals without a background check, several sheriffs have said the laws are unenforceable and they will not enforce what they call unconstitutional laws.
Under Colorado law, the only individual with the authority to arrest a sheriff is the coroner.
Saine said she believes the bill is intended to be used as a foundation for later legislation that will surrender still greater control to federal officials.
“There’ve been so many explanations for the reasons they really need this bill passed. So what is it really?” Saine asked. “I believe it is intended to be used for setting up a framework so that at some other time they could expand it to possibly include being able to arrest a sheriff who is refusing to enforce unconstitutional laws. They would justify it by saying that since we’ve already given the Secret Service this ability, why not give them just one more?”
Lundberg said he agrees with Saine’s assessment that the bill could be used to expand federal power beyond what is stated in its language.
“It does give Secret Service powers in a broad sense, but I’m not sure the changes as stated will automatically change things significantly. It’s not a broad overreach, but it is an overreach. It’s one more step in the wrong direction.”
Lundberg said rather than expanding the ability of federal officials, state and local officials should be looking for opportunities to stand up against federal intervention in local affairs.
“I believe sheriffs can enforce their authority,” Lundberg said. “I also think we need to draw the line as clearly as we can and at every opportunity to say the states are in charge, not the federal government.”
WND has reported that sheriffs across the country are expressing concern that they cannot enforce a Washington mandate that clearly violates the Second Amendment.
A growing list of now more than 340 sheriffs who have reportedly vowed to uphold the Constitution against efforts to undermine Americans’ gun rights is being accumulated by the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association.
As WND also reported, Cooke said he is getting political pressure to support the laws. He said he received an email chain pointing out that Senate Majority Leader John Morse, a Democrat, said if a salary bill were introduced, it would not be until late in the session, after the gun-control bills had been voted on.
Cooke said while he’s not willing to conclude the emails meet the legal definition of extortion, it was apparent that was the intent.
“When you look at the email, I don’t see how you could look at it any other way,” Cooke said. “It definitely implied the reason a pay raise bill was being held up was to punish us for our stance against these gun bills. Then they had another email suggesting if we were to support this bill, it would look better for us and maybe we can get a bill introduced for a raise.
“To me, that didn’t sit well at all. I’m not willing to say its extortion yet, but it just looked bad. We were not willing to compromise on our principles. We felt the bill was bad, and we were not going to support it.”
The sheriff’s pushback against the gun measures is significant because Democratic lawmakers are crafting similar bills in other states.
“The bills are a model for what they’ll try to push in Congress,” said Independence Institute research director and Denver University law professor Dave Kopel.
“Colorado is a pawn for the Obama-Biden plan,” he added.
In fact, Vice-President Joe Biden called undecided Democrats and pushed for passage of the bills. Obama is scheduled to visit the state in just a few days.
While some see the measures as models for other states, laws that preserve gun rights are gaining momentum.
The first of these was the Firearms Freedom Act passed in Montana, which says any firearms made and retained in-state are beyond the authority of Congress under its constitutional power to regulate commerce among the states.
Lawmakers in other states are now following suit.
Two senators in Ohio have introduced a bill which would prohibit firearms seizures, registration and bans in their state.
A bill in Kentucky would prohibit the state from enforcing new federal gun-control laws, if enacted.
Idaho’s House passed a bill that would criminalize enforcing any new federal laws that ban, restrict, confiscate or require registration of firearms or ammunition in violation of the state’s constitution.
A bill in Louisiana would prohibit the enforcement of federal restrictions regarding the ownership or possession of semi-automatic firearms.
A bill that would prohibit the enforcement of federal gun laws passed in the House Public Safety Committee in Oklahoma.
The Texas House is considering a measure to prevent state and local police from enforcing new federal gun-control measures.
A bill in Arizona would make it a felony for the federal government to enforce new laws or regulations on guns, accessories and ammunition owned or manufactured in the state.
And a bill in Michigan would exempt firearms and firearms accessories made and sold exclusively in Michigan from federal gun restrictions.
Some of the strongest language to that effect has come from Utah, where 28 of the state’s 29 elected sheriffs signed a letter to President Obama warning him not to send federal agents to start confiscating guns.
Similarly, in New Mexico in January, 30 of the state’s 33 county sheriffs paid a visit to the state house, reminding the governor and state congressmen that a sheriff’s job is to defend the Constitution, including the Second Amendment.

Obama: Federal Agents Will Enforce ObamaCare, Even If Your State Says No // Mr. Conservative

Obama: Federal Agents Will Enforce ObamaCare, Even If Your State Says No // Mr. Conservative


Obama: Federal Agents Will Enforce ObamaCare, Even If Your State Says No

ObamaCare is not popular. It was not popular when it was enacted, and it has not become any more popular now, especially as people have begun to see the fall-out from this regulatory nightmare, such as skyrocketing insurance costs. Many states, which saw voters respond to ObamaCare by electing Republican legislatures in 2010, subsequently enacted bills exempting them from ObamaCare’s costly and limiting provisions. Unfortunately, Obama does not care.
In an interview with The New American, John Doak, Oklahoma’s Insurance Commissioner, reported that he received a letter from Gary Cohen, who is the Deputy Administrator and Director of the federal Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (“CCIIO”). In that letter, Cohen stated unequivocally that the federal government will impose ObamaCare regulations on insurance companies operating inside Oklahoma. Politico reports that Obama’s administration has sent similar letters to Missouri, Wyoming, and Texas.
Doak views the letter he received as “yet another example of continued overreach of the federal government on states’ rights.” To him, this is just the first shot over the bow.
Doak does not intend to back down in the face of federal pressure. He issued a formal press release responding to Cohen’s letter, saying that Oklahoma will not collaborate with the CCIIO to enforce Obama’s “Affordable” Care Act:
The Oklahoma Insurance Department regulates the health insurance policies sold in the state and responds to consumer questions and complaints. Our consumer assistance team receives over 30,000 phone calls and our website receives over 1,000,000 visits each year. We will continue to serve these consumers by adhering to our duties under the State Constitution and Statutes. The consumers are the ones who are going to bear the costs of these unnecessary federal regulatory burdens.
In addition to adding new fees to health insurance products that will increase prices both inside and outside the exchange, the ACA requires plans to add expensive and often unnecessary coverage benefits. These costs will impact young adults most severely due to the law’s requirement that older Americans pay no more than three times the premium of young adults. A survey of insurers by the American Action Forum found that average premiums for young, healthy adults may triple going into 2014.
The net result of the federal government’s override of 10th Amendment states’ rights is that insurance companies will be subject to two vastly different regulatory systems, dramatically increasing consumer costs. The federal government is demanding the right to review, comment upon, and amend very single state law and form. The marketplace, which is the single force that brings costs down; will be ignored, state laws will be nullified or duplicated in expensive ways; and ObamaCare will ensure that, soon, Americans will have the same quality health care available to Cubans or North Koreans.

Obama Accused of Trying to 'Nationalize' Elections

Obama Accused of Trying to 'Nationalize' Elections

Obama Accused of Trying to 'Nationalize' Elections

President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order Thursday establishing a Presidential Commission to deal with "election administration" that critics say is an attempt to nationalize the country's elections for partisan advantage. 

The Executive Order states the Commission "shall identify best practices and otherwise make recommendations to promote the efficient administration of elections in order to ensure that all eligible voters have the opportunity to cast their ballots without undue delay."
The Commission will focus on polling places, how better to train and recruit poll workers, managing voter rolls and poll books, voting machines, ballot simplicity, English proficiency, and absentee ballots. The states--not the federal government--traditionally have responsibility over such matters.
Obama will appoint no more than nine members to the Commission and appointees will be drawn from among individuals with "knowledge about or experience in the administration of State or local elections, as well as representatives of successful customer service-oriented businesses, and any other individuals with knowledge or experience determined by the President to be of value to the Commission."
Election law expert and former Department of Justice official J. Christian Adams labeled such a Commission a "solution in search of a problem."
The President has previously cited the supposed long lines from last November's election as the main reason for voting reforms. Adams responded that many of these stories are of people who waited hours in line during early voting, not on Election Day. Had they voted on Election Day, they would have had minimal wait times in nearly every precinct throughout the country.
The Obama administration claims it wants to make it easier for military members to vote, but the White House has been accused of violating federal law, as Adams noted, by not establishing voter-assistance offices on military bases. Congress appropriated the Pentagon $75 million to do so.
On his radio show on Thursday, Mark Levin said Obama was using "falsehoods" about long lines to "nationalize" elections in a power grab that will "further weaken our voting system" at the state level.
Levin said he may be okay with nationalizing elections to prevent voter fraud by instituting Voter ID laws but reiterated that the federal government has no control over voting.
The talk radio host attacked progressive news outlets for claiming Obama had to create this commission because of long lines in 2012's election based on anecdotal evidence. Levin noted there have been studies to the contrary.
Adams cited one such study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that found the average wait to vote last November on Election Day was 13 minutes, compared to 20 minutes in early voting locations.
Levin tied the debate on election laws to the discussions of federal power when states weighed ratifying the U.S. Constitution.
"Some of the anti-federalists who opposed the Constitution were very, very concerned that the federal government would interfere with state election laws. And they felt if the federal government did that, the federal, central government would have control over the election process and use it to its benefit," he said.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Pulled from the headlines:

Pulled from the headlines:

Sequester cuts hit the Military the hardest, high ranking members stepping aside in high numbers.

Muslim Brotherhood infiltrates the administration in a bold and shocking manner.

Anti-Americans dominate the cabinet positions in greater numbers this term.

Navy has ships docked all in a row while they await scheduled refitting, delayed by sequester.

Russian subs boldly occupy water near our shores, unchecked.

Scores of Navy Seals mysteriously die on Obama's watch; many from Seal Team Six.

Military being pushed to the lowest morale we've ever seen.

Marines ordered to remove firing pins and bullets from their weapons during inaugural ceremonies.

Under cover weapons-running operation out of Benghazi and the death of four Americans there is largely ignored by many in DC.

White House cut off from the American people but access is opened to Muslim group to " tour" and big donors.

Russia aligning (openly) itself with China and running surprise training exercises while we just watch, this after Obama tells Medevev he will have more flexibility after his election.

Obama chooses a Holy Week to visit Israel to deliver messages to leaders all over the area about his wish to see Jerusalem divided.

Arming the Muslim Brotherhood with your money, billions sent to our enemies while our commanders tell their troops to save every gallon of gas and preserve their bullets.

Police Departments here beg for ammo while the DHS hoards billions of rounds.

Gun grabbing against US Citizens all while Feds approve many on our no-fly list allowed to purchase them here.

Thousands of illegals (felons among them) released back into the population.

Farrakhan recruits gang members from the pulpit.

bin Laden's son in law brought into NYC for a federal trial.

Drones can be used in the US and on Americans with no trial.

Thousands of (Arabic) names magically disappear from the no-fly list.

Control towers said to go unmanned soon because of "sequester".

Dollar on the way to collapse.

Feds print billions of new ones to assure it happens sooner rather than later.

Sequester cuts cause the border to be completely unwatched for two hours a day?

Morsi is promising Egyptians that alWari will be freed soon.

Threats against US homeland daily from despots.

Yep, time to "party on" for the traitor and vice traitor.

I don't see any problems here, do you?

Friday, March 29, 2013

Planned Parenthood Official Argues for Right to Post-Birth Abortion | The Weekly Standard

Planned Parenthood Official Argues for Right to Post-Birth Abortion | The Weekly Standard

Planned Parenthood Official Argues for Right to Post-Birth Abortion

11:36 AM, Mar 29, 2013 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Florida legislators considering a bill to require abortionists to provide medical care to an infant who survives an abortion were shocked during a committee hearing this week when a Planned Parenthood official endorsed a right to post-birth abortion.
Alisa LaPolt Snow, the lobbyist representing the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, testified that her organization believes the decision to kill an infant who survives a failed abortion should be left up to the woman seeking an abortion and her abortion doctor.
"So, um, it is just really hard for me to even ask you this question because I’m almost in disbelief," said Rep. Jim Boyd. "If a baby is born on a table as a result of a botched abortion, what would Planned Parenthood want to have happen to that child that is struggling for life?”
"We believe that any decision that's made should be left up to the woman, her family, and the physician," said Planned Parenthood lobbyist Snow.
Rep. Daniel Davis then asked Snow, "What happens in a situation where a baby is alive, breathing on a table, moving. What do your physicians do at that point?”
"I do not have that information," Snow replied. "I am not a physician, I am not an abortion provider. So I do not have that information.”
Rep. Jose Oliva followed up, asking the Planned Parenthood official, "You stated that a baby born alive on a table as a result of a botched abortion that that decision should be left to the doctor and the family. Is that what you’re saying?”
Again, Snow replied, “That decision should be between the patient and the health care provider.”
“I think that at that point the patient would be the child struggling on the table, wouldn’t you agree?” asked Oliva.
"That’s a very good question. I really don’t know how to answer that," Snow said. "I would be glad to have some more conversations with you about this.”
Later another representative asked Snow, “What objection could you possibly have to obligate a doctor to transport a child born alive to a hospital where it seems to me they would be most likely to be able to survive?”
Snow said Planned Parenthood was concerned about "those situations where it is in a rural health care setting, the hospital is 45 minutes or an hour away, that’s the closest trauma center or emergency room. You know there’s just some logistical issues involved that we have some concerns about.”
You can watch the full exchange at the 39-minute mark of this video.


FLASHBACK: Obama seizes control over all food, farms, livestock, farm equipment, fertilizer and food production across America

These are the things that are going on in plain site while you were sleeping......

by Mike Adams

"We told ya so" just doesn't quite cut it anymore. As the American sheeple slept, selfishly refusing to take a stand against tyranny, the Obama administration has been plotting what can only be called a total government takeover of America.

On March 16, 2012, President Obama issued an executive order entitled, "NATIONAL DEFENSE RESOURCES PREPAREDNESS." (

This executive order states that the President alone has the authority to take over all resources in the nation (labor, food, industry, etc.) as long as it is done "to promote the national defense" -- a phrase so vague that it could mean practically anything.

The power to seize control and take over these resources is delegated to the following government authorities:

(1) the Secretary of Agriculture with respect to food resources, food resource facilities, livestock resources, veterinary resources, plant health resources, and the domestic distribution of farm equipment and commercial fertilizer;

(2) the Secretary of Energy with respect to all forms of energy;

(3) the Secretary of Health and Human Services with respect to health resources;

(4) the Secretary of Transportation with respect to all forms of civil transportation;

(5) the Secretary of Defense with respect to water resources; and

(6) the Secretary of Commerce with respect to all other materials, services, and facilities, including construction materials.

This takeover is designed, in part, to "stockpile supplies" for the U.S. military. Authority for this total takeover of all national resources is granted with nothing more than the writing of a single statement that claims these actions are necessary to "promote the national defense." As stated in the order:

the authority delegated by section 201 of this order may be used only to support programs that have been determined in writing as necessary or appropriate to promote the national defense:

(a) by the Secretary of Defense with respect to military production and construction, military assistance to foreign nations, military use of civil transportation, stockpiles managed by the Department of Defense, space, and directly related activities;

What all this means is that the U.S. government now claims the power to simply march onto your farm with guns drawn and demand all your crops, seeds, livestock and farm equipment.

Think I'm exaggerating? Read it yourself!

And for those living in denial who refuse to accept the reality of what's happening in America, remember the following:

• When NaturalNews reported on the existence of the NDAA, we were told our reporting was misleading because Obama opposed it and wouldn't sign it.

• When Obama betrayed America and signed the bill, we were told our reporting was misleading because "it didn't apply to Americans."

• When Obama admitted it did apply to Americans, he announced that he would choose "not to use it on Americans" but only by the grace of his restraint. Nobody who previously accused us of misleading the public had the integrity to offer us an apology and say, "Gee, you were right, it DOES apply to Americans!"

• Now Obama has seized control over all food, farms, livestock, water and transportation across America. How many brain-dead Americans will continue to live in denial and try to convince themselves this is not happening? Sticking your head in the sand does not make this go away...

What California did to Rawesome Foods, the Obama administration can do to everyone

Remember the armed raids on Rawesome Foods? With guns drawn, California authorities assaulted the food distribution center, arrested the farmers, then proceeded to destroy $50,000 worth of food including milk, eggs, cheese and watermelons. (

As outrageous as that raid was, it's only the beginning. Now, thanks to Obama's executive order, the federal government can conduct Rawesome-style raids on all farms, all grocery stores, all food co-ops and even individual home gardens.

It's written in plain English. This is no longer debatable and it's not a conspiracy theory. It's Obama administration policy. For what other purpose would this be issued in an executive order if it was not seen as actionable by the government? This piece of paper, you see, gives them the (false) authority to do whatever they want and then have the front-line soldiers who carry it out claim "we're only following orders."

Sound familiar? Heil Hitler!

Understanding the fraud

This executive order starts out by stating that the U.S. President is the "Commander in Chief" of the U.S. military. This is false. He is not the commander in chief unless and until Congress declares an Act of War. No acts of war have been declared in recent memory, and certainly not under Obama who doesn't even seek congressional approval for war.

So Obama is in no way a "Commander in Chief." In fact, it is questionable whether he is even a U.S. citizen.

The phrase "national defense" can be twisted to mean almost anything. It could be invoked from something as harmless as a barge sinking in the harbor. It could even be invoked based on fabricated intelligence such as a fake website post from someone alleged to be "Bin Laden's second in command" who appears to shout some sort of threat against the United States of America. So the claim that this seizing of national resources will only be done under some sort of national defense emergency is pure bunk -- both Obama and Bush before him have already declared we are living under a national defense emergency! Thus, the conditions described in this executive order have already been triggered. It is already in effect!

Notice how nothing in this document talks about protecting the People? Serving the People? Supporting the People? It's all about protecting the government! The government needs stockpiles of weapons, food and resources -- but YOU don't! Such is the philosophy of current government which sees itself as all powerful and the People as helpless, mindless slaves of the state.

Tyrannical governments concern themselves with important concepts such as continuity of government but never the continuity of liberty for the People. At the first drop of a hat, liberty gets thrown out the window to keep government in power.

Other signs of the takeover

• Last year, I interviewed Farmer Brad in central Texas, who openly stated, on camera, that FEMA has already started calling farms across Texas and demanding an inventory list of all their crops and seeds. Watch this interview yourself at:

• Yesterday in Chicago, the police arrested NBC reporters outside a hospital, screaming that their First Amendment rights could be taken away from them at any time:

• Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta recently revealed in U.S. Senate testimony that the Obama administration takes its orders from the UN and that the U.S. Congress is now null and void. ( and (

• When MF Global head Jon Corzine stole billions of dollars from investors (many were farmers), there were absolutely no investigations, no indictments and no criminal arrests! Massive financial theft is now openly tolerated in America as long as those doing the stealing are politically connected to the Obama administration. (

Of course, it's not an Obama thing. Bush was much the same. It's not the name of the person in the Oval Office who matters, it's the fundamental lack of principles and ethics reflected across government today. Instead of protecting the rights of the People, today's corrupt governments are little more than criminal gangs who steal power and resources for themselves (and their connected buddies) while destroying the economy and stealing everything in sight from the real workers upon whose sweat-drenched backs America was built.

Learn more:

The Price of Gay Marriage: The Galvanic Corrosion of Language

The Price of Gay Marriage: The Galvanic Corrosion of Language

The Price of Gay Marriage: The Galvanic Corrosion of Language

By Geoffrey P. Hunt

When was that watershed moment where advocacy of gay marriage crossed into the mainstream from the radical chic of the intellectual elite ?   Gay marriage, quite apart from homosexuality per se, has only in recent years been embraced by more than just a few libertarian sophisticates.  Ironically it wasn't too long ago when the progressive darlings and the beautiful people believed, to the contrary, that marriage of any kind was oppressive, a form of institutional bondage.
One of the more incomprehensible aspects of the gay marriage movement has been the spectacle of well-educated academics, plaintiff's lawyers, politicians, judges and Protestant clergymen designing tortured arguments for deconstructing natural law, human biology, the history of civilization, language and logic.  On the other hand, creating a new class of civil rights amidst claims of discrimination is easy when your world view equates justice with moral equivalence, accompanied by enabling the slow corruption of language.
Joseph Campbell, mythologist, philosopher and cultural anthropologist in his "Myths to Live By" succinctly recounts three creation myths: the Hindu "Brihadaranyaka Upanishad" where the Self splits into male and female; in the Judeo-Christian account of "Genesis" where the woman is created out of the man; and, in the Greek version where the sun (men), the earth (women) and male/female together (the moon) come together and are split by Zeus and Apollo into male and female.
Surely it is not a coincidence that every creation myth by every root civilization has involved a male and a female. How else would the species replicate? How else could a civilization endure? This is the yin-yang; plus-minus; electron-proton; the digital 0s and 1s; attraction-repellant; the symmetry of left-right; expansion-contraction; matter-anti-matter; male-female.
The universe is occupied and sustained exclusively by the notion of opposites, without which sexual reproduction of humans would be impossible. But such an intuitive truth, that normally would be unremarkable even to an uneducated person, has been overturned by "scientific consensus." Indeed merely suggesting that gay marriage is an affront to intellectual honesty has been branded as hate speech seen on par with language used by racial segregationists.
Imitating literary nonsense a la Lewis Carroll, gay marriage apologetics delight co-opting and twisting commonly accepted usage imagining an alternative universe where water runs uphill, ice sinks to the bottom of the pond, and lightning has fewer volts than a lightning bug.
For the most part, average Marys and Joes have no horse in this race. They are weary of the posturing, being labeled as Neanderthals and homophobes. They just want to be left alone, and the English language left unmolested.
At the same time, average Marys and Joes have labored under the impression that gay marriage is a substantive issue about sexuality. No, it's about who can be the most provocative, ridiculous, and outrageous. To wit, the absurd -- pigtail pulling -- theatrical spectacle at the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School in South Hadley, MA of "The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told", where Biblical characters are depicted as gays and lesbians, notably Adam and Eve replaced by a gay couple "Adam and Steve".
Gay marriage as parody is one thing.  It is something else to witness advocacy of gay marriage from otherwise rational and linear thinking lawyers such as Ted Olsen, conservative jurist and former Solicitor General under George W. Bush, simply denying the tautology of a definition. "Marriage" defines a union ceremonially recognized by a community between a man and woman. No more, no less. The word does not describe any other relationship between consenting adults, whether for the opposite sex or those of the same sex.        
Many will complain this is a mean-spirited value judgment. No, this is a conclusion derived from facts and a definition, inasmuch it is a fact that in a black hole, as astrophysicists will attest, even light cannot escape. Although there are four judges on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court accompanied by a Federal judge in California nearly a decade ago, who started this baroque pas-de-deux, willing to assert that black holes violate equal protection and freedom of assembly clauses of the universe by not allowing light to come and go as it pleases.
The gay marriage movement is nothing more than wholesale narcissism. But, of course, we have become a nation of narcissists, so what did you expect?
Narcissus, you will recall, unable to return the affections of the nymph Echo, was consigned to forever seek the embrace of his own reflection and be captive to an illusion.  So what becomes of the illusion of gay marriage?  Where does the line of sight beyond gay marriage lead?  Well, to steal a reference from philosopher Antony Flew in an essay on death, who quoted the apocalyptic words of Ludwig Wittgenstein, "Outside the visual field nothing is seen, not even darkness...the world in death does not change, but ceases."
Throughout the ages, the celebration of a lifelong union between a man and a woman -- defined as a marriage -- has been a life-affirming festivity with primordial hopes of reproduction and immortality. Marriage is more profound than merely sharing the joy of a happy couple.  Instead the celebration of a same-sex union, if labeled a gay marriage, is something wholly other -- intellectually dissembling, a celebration of a linguistic cul-de-sac.
Gay marriage, rather than provoking outrage, may at its core just be melancholy, an empty gesture; and one more variant in the galvanic corrosion of our language.   But when the celebration of gay marriage achieves equal standing as the lexiographic equivalent of marriage, who can deny our intellect will have been turned upside down?

Stopping the Inevitable

Stopping the Inevitable

Stopping the Inevitable

By Doug Lucas

One of the most foreboding dictums ever written concerning government is this one: "A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover they can vote themselves largess out of the public treasury."
The original author of this quote is a matter of dispute. Some say Alexander Tytler and others Alexis de Tocqueville. Either way, the words ring true and it is sadly familiar and ominous, but may also offer a ray of hope.
Between forty-seven and fifty percent of the human souls in this country pay no taxes at the federal level, and a growing percentage receive 'earned income' credits, meaning not only do they not pay in, they are actually given unsolicited welfare by the top fifty percent that they are told is their due. They are 'entitled' to it; it was 'earned.'
A large, and growing, percentage of our citizenry who do have good jobs are working for the government, earning twice what their private counterparts bring home. To pour salt in the wound, these extravagant salaries are for jobs that produce no goods, add no value to our economy, and are actually paid with confiscated monies from the only members of society who are producing goods and services that people need.
It seems that the above prediction is coming true right in front of our very eyes. Once the balance tips and the takers outnumber the givers, there is little chance of peaceful reversal.
We stand at a precipice. Can we stop or reverse our destiny? If you take the above scenario as the only given, it seems fairly hopeless. The lure of free benefits, unearned income tax credits, and exaggerated salaries for parasitic jobs is almost too good to resist. Largess is seductive. It forms an ever-widening destructive vortex that sucks in all but the most resolute. It feeds on apathy and dependency and entitlement attitudes. How can it be stopped? Is it even possible?
When half of the voters, who are now a net drag on the economy, cast their ballots in hopes of electing someone who will give them more goodies from the treasury, are we not swirling hopelessly around the drain leading to the cesspool of crushing debt and eventual tyranny?
While on the surface this seems like an unstoppable force, buried in the quote is a possible answer: they can vote.
The fuel for the takers must be cut off. But how? What feeds them? Taxes. Where do taxes come from? The producers. How do the takers get taxes, their largess? They simply trade their votes to people who have the sovereign authority to use force against the producers to confiscate their earnings and redistribute it to them, after a bit -- quite a bit actually -- off the top for their trouble.
So the bottom line here is votes. It's a waste of time trying to stop the money; those government presses will keep churning out our future demise until and unless a fundamental change takes place. If the votes are there, the money follows.
So let's slaughter a sacred cow and ask the obvious question. Why should a parasitic class have the right to vote?
Many will rebel at even the mention of this heresy, assuredly those benefitting from the system, but even good people who see our situation for what it is. 'The vote' seems such a cornerstone of America's foundation, the birthright of all citizens. But we routinely take that right away. Most felons, through actions they freely chose to pursue, forfeit that right. Extend that thought, step out of the box and ask yourselves this: if some can lose their rights through personal actions why not others?
If someone takes a Federal job should they retain the right to elect their own benefactors while suckling at the public teat? Should someone who is on welfare or otherwise benefitting from taxpayers' money be allowed to vote on benefit increases or extensions? Should those who are consistently voting themselves largess be allowed to continue? Should the takers have the tools to force the givers to fork over ever more staggering amounts of treasure or should that be a decision made by the givers? The takers have become infantilized. Would any sane parent give their children the unqualified right to decide their own allowance?
American history is full of limitations on the right to vote. Many, if not most, were undeniably wrong, such as disenfranchising freed slaves, women, and people that couldn't afford a poll tax. However, these onerous limitations were levied against people due to circumstances beyond their control. These wrongs were remedied by amendments to the constitution.
Unlike the victimized classes listed above, government workers and welfare recipients could be considered to have voluntarily abrogated their right to vote and they could just as quickly recover that right by becoming a producer again. There may be many things you can't change, but you can refuse to take welfare.
This is only one of many possible ways to build a firewall between the treasury and those who seek to plunder our nation's future. These are ominous times and it will take serious solutions to curb the darker tendencies of human nature.
Those among us who seek to slow the mad dash to ruination must consider every constitutional possibility to preserve our nation. This is a fight for survival; it is a battle against what some say is inevitable. As we attempt to wrest the levers of power from the takers we will be assailed, denigrated, castigated, and attacked from every side, but if we are to be free men the battle must be joined.