Fed up: Anger rising across America…

Friends are you angry? Fed up? Ready to take action? Read on…

The following was written by Kathleen Troia “K.T.” McFarland who is a Fox News National Security Analyst and host of FoxNews.com’s “DefCon 3.” She served in national security posts in the Nixon, Ford and Reagan administrations. She was an aide to Dr. Henry Kissinger at the White House, and in 1984 Ms. McFarland wrote Secretary of Defense Weinberger’s groundbreaking  “Principles of War ” speech.  She received the Defense Department’s highest civilian award for her work in the Reagan administration.

angry_americaFed up: Anger rising across America…

Every Fourth of July we have a family dinner and take turns reading sections of the Declaration of Independence. When my kids were young they were thoroughly bored. When they were teenagers they rushed through the reading so they could ditch the family and see their friends, who weren’t subjected to such July 4th indignities. But my children are grown now, and this year brought their friends to our family dinner.

We handed out slices of American Flag cake along with copies of the Declaration and commenced reading, going around the table.  My children were apprehensive their friends would think their parents were too corny, and their friends looked on politely, but unenthusiastically.  The first few lines were familiar to everyone: “When in the Course of human events”…and…. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights…”

We’re seeing the stirrings of a movement against Washington’s governing elite, an increasingly angry reaction to their abuse of power.

Read beyond those first two paragraphs, though, and you get the long list of grievances the Colonials had against the King.  Some of our readers this year were in the military, two were Special Forces guys, just back from some of the fiercest fighting in Afghanistan. The rest were recent college graduates, struggling to find jobs, get apartments they could afford, and payoff college loans.

This year our reading of the Declaration clicked.

As we went around the table, each person reading a few sentences of the Declaration, the momentum picked up. People started reading with enthusiasm, then gusto, and mounting passion as they got further down the list of grievances. They started banging the table as the abuses mounted, and finished by chanting all together the repeated phrase,“Free and Independent States”.

It dawned on us that what happened in America in the 1770’s is like what’s happening all across the country today. We’re seeing the stirrings of a movement against Washington’s governing elite, an increasingly angry reaction to their abuse of power.

For the first time in all the years of reading the Declaration, I felt how angry the Colonials were.  It wasn’t just about paying taxes, or being able to vote for members of Parliament. It was about a far-away government dictating to people who lived very different lives. It was about a big government that took from the people but gave very little in return.  It was about an arrogant elite, deaf to the repeated petitions of the people. It was about abuse of power.

Think of what it must have been like for our forbearers.  They had been carving out a life in the wilderness for over a hundred years, through their own determination, hard work and self-reliance.

They had been self governing not by design, but by circumstance, since the King and his Parliament were an Ocean away.  But when the King started handing down new laws and taxes and increasing his interference in areas of life the Colonials had been accustomed to think of as their domain, they petitioned for redress. The King refused, instead sending a mercenary army to keep order in the Colonies.  The Colonials fought back, hoping it would get the King to address their grievances and give them the rights of freeborn Englishmen. It didn’t work.

The Colonials had been pushed to the limit and realized the only option left to them was a clean break with the motherland.  They sent delegates to Philadelphia to write a document listing their grievances with the King, laying out the case for why they had no choice but to demand independence. They insisted they had rights that no King could deny, because those rights came directly from the Creator.  They signed, knowing it they were risking their lives and treasure.  Here are some of their complaints, in language which sounds archaic, but with arguments which seem snatched from today’s headlines.

“He has refused his Assent to Laws… He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing Importance.  He has…exposed to all the Dangers of Invasion from without, and Convulsions within.  He has obstructed the Administration of Justice…. He has erected a Multitude of new Offices… He has affected to…giving his Assent to Acts of pretended Legislation.”

There is a new dissatisfaction blowing across the country.  As it was in the 1770s, the movement is not coming from the seat of power or among those who make the laws.  It’s coming from the “little people,” who live outside the Beltway.

You see it in opinion poll after opinion poll.  The majority of people think their children’s lives will not be as good as theirs.  Nearly half of all Americans are no longer proud of their country. Politicians have become a despised breed.

If this trend continues, it’s hard to see how the country can continue to carry on as usual, trading off power between one Washington elite and the other.

Why? Because the indictment is not against one party or even one president, it’s a loss of faith in the entire system, and it’s been building for a while.

The current incumbent has accelerated that sense of alienation, with an administration that enforces only the laws it likes, ignoring the rest. But both Republicans and Democrats have been in on the game; they’re so busy fighting with each other over the spoils of office, that they ignore the rest of us except at election time when they want our votes.

We are now governed by elites, some the second and third generation of elites, who have decided the rest of us aren’t smart enough to govern ourselves. They believe modern society has become so complicated that government needs to be in every nook and cranny of it, making the decisions for us, for our own good. They know what’s best for us.

This growing dissatisfaction hasn’t reached a boiling point, but it shows no signs of simmering down.  The signs are everywhere.

It’s the fact that a majority of Americans say they’re independents, and no longer no longer identify either political party.

It’s the libertarians who want to reclaim decision making for themselves.  It’s the small government folks who see government as a great Leviathan gobbling up more and more of their treasure and freedoms.

It’s the deficit hawks who worry we are enslaving our children and grandchildren to pay off this generation’s debt.

It’s a national movement that’s growing and the reason it’s such a threat to the governing elite, is that it’s increasingly young people who are attracted to it.

And it’s now about any one issue. It’s about the breakdown of government. It’s about Washington’s failure to protect our borders, about Washington’s out of control spending, about Washington’s corruption and collusion with special interests. It’s about arrogant all-powerful government officials who answer to no one, and act outraged when anyone dares question them.   It’s about a Washington elite that has turned the Declaration of Independence on its head and behaves as if the only rights Americans have are the ones they bestow on us. It’s about a pervasive attitude that America works to keep Washington elites in power, instead of Washington working for us.

One of the most cogent sections of the Declaration is the recognition that it takes a lot for people to rebel and throw off tyrants. The founders human nature, “that Mankind are more disposed to suffer, while Evils are Sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed.”

No one knows where this 21st century, nascent political movement will go. Maybe it fizzles out because abuses of power are terrible but tolerable.  Maybe Washington wises up and reverses direction. But maybe the Leviathan just gets too big to ignore and the people rise up, and vote them out of office, en masse.

Americans are slow to anger, but once they do get angry, they are impossible to stop.  Just ask King George III.

SOURCE – Foxnews.com

Obama rated worst president since World War II… No $hit!

Romney_ITYSIn a new Quinnipiac poll, 33% of respondents rated Obama as the worst President among the 12 leaders since the 1945 war. Really?  I bet you even used a slide-rule to fiqure that one out!  Ronald Reagan was voted the best, with 35% support.  Of those polled, 33% rated Obama as the least impressive of the 12 Presidents since the last global conflict.  His predecessor, George W. Bush, was a close second with 28%.  When asked to rank the best Presidents since the 1945 war, Americans rated Ronald Reagan as the best with 35%.  Clinton came second with 18% and in third was John Kennedy with 15%.  Abuse of executive power, IRS scandal, VA scandal, Benghazi cover-up, Fast-and-Furious cover-up, healthcare highway robbery, illegal alien children pouring over our southern border… Friends, I didn’t need a poll to see the obvious.  #cantwaittogetridofthisasshole

SOURCE – NY Daily News

Net Neutrality 101…

Friends, the Villainous VooDoo supports Net Neutrality.  “What’s Net Neutrality?” you say?  Wikipedia describes it as:

Net neutrality (also network neutrality or Internet neutrality) is the principle that Internet service providers and governments should treat all data on the Internet equally, not discriminating or charging differentially by user, content, site, platform, application, type of attached equipment, and modes of communication. The term was coined by Columbia media law professor Tim Wu in 2003 as an extension of the longstanding concept of a common carrier.  Proponents often see net neutrality as an important component of an open internet, where policies such as equal treatment of data and open web standards allow those on the internet to easily communicate and conduct business without interference from a third party.  A “closed internet” refers to the opposite situation, in which established corporations or governments favor certain uses. A closed internet may have restricted access to necessary web standards, artificially degrade some services, or explicitly filter out content.

To put it in more layman’s terms, check this out:


Friends, you need to contact your State Representatives; slap ’em around if you need to but make sure your voice is heard on this one.  Read more here.

UPDATE – 05/09/14 –Proposed Net Neutrality Changes Appear Headed For A Vote

IRS employees who didn’t pay their taxes got staggering bonuses

Trust_The_IRS“Not even mass corruption — not even a smidgen of corruption.”

Who said that?

Friends, according to a government watchdog, the Treasury Department doled out $2.8 million in bonuses to IRS employees having disciplinary problems — and more than a third of that amount went to 1,146 employees who didn’t bother paying their own taxes.  The report was announced Tuesday by the Treasury Department Inspector General for Tax Administration, according to USA Today.

Tax cheating IRS agents weren’t just rewarded with bonuses. USA Today reported:

The bonuses weren’t just monetary. Employees with tax problems received a total of 10,582 hours of paid time off — valued at about $250,000 — and 69 received permanent raises through a step increase, the report said. The report looked at bonuses in 2011 and 2012.

Employees’ tax problems included “willful understatement of tax liabilities over multiple tax years, late payment of tax liabilities, and underreporting of income,” the report said.

“We take seriously our unique role as this nation’s tax administrator, and we will strive to implement a policy that protects the integrity of the tax administration system and the reputation of the service,” IRS chief Human Capital Officer David Krieg said in a written response to the audit.  Although the agency considers disciplinary matters before giving bonuses to senior agency executives, to make that policy apply across the board would require negotiations with the National Treasury Employees Union.

Watch the news report from Diane Sawyer via ABC News

SOURCE – BizPacReview.com

The United States of SWAT?

SWATRegardless of how people feel about Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s standoff with the federal Bureau of Land Management over his cattle’s grazing rights, a lot of Americans were surprised to see TV images of an armed-to-the-teeth paramilitary wing of the BLM deployed around Bundy’s ranch.

They shouldn’t have been. Dozens of federal agencies now have Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) teams to further an expanding definition of their missions. It’s not controversial that the Secret Service and the Bureau of Prisons have them. But what about the Department of Agriculture, the Railroad Retirement Board, the Tennessee Valley Authority, the Office of Personnel Management, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service? All of these have their own SWAT units and are part of a worrying trend towards the militarization of federal agencies — not to mention local police forces.

“Law-enforcement agencies across the U.S., at every level of government, have been blurring the line between police officer and soldier,” journalist Radley Balko writes in his 2013 book Rise of the Warrior Cop. “The war on drugs and, more recently, post-9/11 antiterrorism efforts have created a new figure on the U.S. scene: the warrior cop — armed to the teeth, ready to deal harshly with targeted wrongdoers, and a growing threat to familiar American liberties.”

The proliferation of paramilitary federal SWAT teams inevitably brings abuses that have nothing to do with either drugs or terrorism. Many of the raids they conduct are against harmless, often innocent, Americans who typically are accused of non-violent civil or administrative violations.

Take the case of Kenneth Wright of Stockton, Calif., who was “visited” by a SWAT team from the U.S. Department of Education in June 2011. Agents battered down the door of his home at 6 a.m., dragged him outside in his boxer shorts, and handcuffed him as they put his three children (ages 3, 7, and 11) in a police car for two hours while they searched his home. The raid was allegedly intended to uncover information on Wright’s estranged wife, Michelle, who hadn’t been living with him and was suspected of college financial-aid fraud.

The year before the raid on Wright, a SWAT team from the Food and Drug Administration raided the farm of Dan Allgyer of Lancaster, Pa. His crime was shipping unpasteurized milk across state lines to a cooperative of young women with children in Washington, D.C., called Grass Fed on the Hill. Raw milk can be sold in Pennsylvania, but it is illegal to transport it across state lines. The raid forced Allgyer to close down his business.

Brian Walsh, a senior legal analyst with the Heritage Foundation, says it is inexplicable why so many federal agencies need to be battle-ready: “If these agencies occasionally have a legitimate need for force to execute a warrant, they should be required to call a real law-enforcement agency, one that has a better sense of perspective. The FBI, for example, can draw upon its vast experience to determine whether there is an actual need for a dozen SWAT agents.”

Since 9/11, the feds have issued a plethora of homeland-security grants that encourage local police departments to buy surplus military hardware and form their own SWAT units. By 2005, at least 80 percent of towns with a population between 25,000 and 50,000 people had their own SWAT team. The number of raids conducted by local police SWAT teams has gone from 3,000 a year in the 1980s to over 50,000 a year today.

Once SWAT teams are created, they will be used. Nationwide, they are used for standoffs, often serious ones, with bad guys. But at other times they’ve been used for crimes that hardly warrant military-style raids. Examples include angry dogs, domestic disputes, and misdemeanor marijuana possession. In 2010, a Phoenix, Ariz., sheriff’s SWAT team that included a tank and several armored vehicles raided the home of Jesus Llovera. The tank, driven by the newly deputized action-film star Steven Seagal, plowed right into Llovera’s house. The incident was filmed and, together with footage of Seagal-accompanied immigration raids, was later used for Seagal’s A&E TV law-enforcement reality show.

The crime committed by Jesus Llovera was staging cockfights. During the sheriff’s raid, his dog was killed, and later all of his chickens were put to sleep.

Many veteran law-enforcement figures have severe qualms about the turn police work is taking. One retired veteran of a large metropolitan police force told me: “I was recently down at police headquarters for a meeting. Coincidently, there was a promotion ceremony going on and the SWAT guys looked just like members of the Army, except for the police shoulder patches. Not an image I would cultivate. It leads to a bad mindset.”

Indeed, the U.S. Constitution’s Third Amendment, against the quartering of troops in private homes, was part of an overall reaction against the excesses of Britain’s colonial law enforcement. “It wasn’t the stationing of British troops in the colonies that irked patriots in Boston and Virginia,” Balko writes. “It was England’s decision to use the troops for everyday law enforcement.”

There are things that can be done to curb the abuses without taking on the politically impossible job of disbanding SWAT units. The feds should stop shipping military vehicles to local police forces. Federal SWAT teams shouldn’t be used to enforce regulations, but should focus instead on potentially violent criminals. Cameras mounted on the dashboards of police cars have both brought police abuses to light and exonerated officers who were falsely accused of abuse. SWAT-team members could be similarly equipped with helmet cameras.

After all, if taxpayers are being asked to foot the bill and cede ground on their Fourth Amendment rights, they have the right to a transparent, accountable record of just what is being done in their name.

SOURCE – NationalReview.com

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