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Friday, March 31, 2017

How To AMEND The Constitution

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 Armando Simon

I believe that many people would agree that it is time to at least consider amendments to the U.S. Constitution, something that is usually contemplated with trepidation, and with good reason. But, chronic, very serious, problems in the body politic -- universally acknowledged, by the way -- some of which have been legislatively addressed only to be shot down as being Constitutionally incompatible, have created the zeitgeist for serious consideration. Here, then, are nine vital amendments which would go a long way towards healing some of the serious troubles within the commonwealth, along with the reasons that favor them.
Balanced budget. This is a bipartisan goal, at least on the surface. Most politicians balk at having their “pork” eliminated while others retain theirs. Remember when the pundits and the politicians warned hysterically that the country would collapse when sequestering would go into effect? Nothing happened. Therefore, during peacetime each year, Congress shall adopt a yearly budget for the running of the government which said budget does not run at a deficit and may, instead, try to have a surplus for the purpose of eliminating the national debt. Should the Congress not adopt such a budget, neither the members of Congress nor the President will receive a salary or any other benefits that accrue from being in office.
Line item veto. Approval for a line-item veto has also had bipartisan support for years, but a bipartisan law establishing it was struck down by the Supreme Court as going against the present tenets of the Constitution. By giving the President the power to veto individual items that are always appended to a major bill -- colloquially called “pork” -- would eliminate a gargantuan waste of taxpayer money. The reason for the bipartisan support is that individual legislators view with contempt the inclusion of spending items, but since that is being done, might as well do it for their own states in order to send federal money their way. But if nobody gets to take advantage of the system then they are all in favor of eliminating “pork.” Therefore, the President has authority to veto individual projects that are included in a bill passed by Congress.
Electoral College. I used to believe that the Electoral College was an absurdity, that it made no sense in a democracy and was in fact, counter to the concept of democracy. Serious study of American history, culture, and the legal system has dissuaded me from such a conclusion. In fact, the Electoral College is similar to the redistricting that takes place every few years after a census takes place. Federal courts, for example, take Federalism very, very seriously, that the United States is a federation, each state with its own customs and laws and not a unitary monolith, as is the case in, say, France. Having an electoral college during the presidential elections guarantees that the politicians, against their inclination, will pay attention to small states and the concerns of the citizens of those small states---or, actually, pretend to do so. This is why small states like New Hampshire and Iowa go first in their primaries. If that was not the case, presidential candidates would focus their entire campaign efforts at those states with a huge population -- like California, New York, Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio -- and essentially would tell the people of less populated states like Wyoming, Maine, Kentucky, Kansas to go to hell.
Having said that, however, there is an undeniable shortcoming to the concept of the Electoral College, which has twice become evident in the past decade. That is, that on rare occasions, the popular vote is higher than the electoral count, and so, the loser is actually the winner. This creates justifiable resentment. On top of that, recently there have been individuals who have advocated scrapping the Constitution in regards to the electoral process itself because they did not like who was voted President, and some of these have been electors. Therefore, a constitutional amendment should read that, in those cases where the popular vote is higher than the electoral count, the winner of the presidential election is the person with the highest votes. Additonally, electors must vote for the individual that won the election in the state; any elector that votes for someone else will be subjected to legal penalties and the miscast vote instantly corrected.
Foreign intervention. Although Congress has legally the right to declare war, in the past half century, the President has sent military forces overseas to other countries and the Supreme Court has paradoxically given its sanction as being legal. During the Cold War, the United States did so in order to stop Communist imperialism but now that urgency has passed. It has become evident by now that America has militarily intervened too many times in foreign affairs, whether as an act of war, or, on humanitarian grounds. It has become an addiction. It has become addictive to try to correct the world’s problems by sticking our noses into situations, most of which times, our government officials had no idea what was truly going on, but were urged to do so by a hysterical media, and by doing so, actually worsened a situation.
On the other hand, a future situation can be imagined wherein the President must act rapidly to an immediate threat. Therefore, the President may not militarily attack other countries, nor send any armed forces into another country, without the approval of Congress. The exceptions are: 1) if the United States has military bases in a country, the President may send additional forces into those bases during times of peace 2) if a country with which the United States of America is allied with by treaty is invaded by the forces of another country, and not by insurgents, the President may honor its treaty obligations by sending military forces for military purposes, at which point Congress shall determine whether a state of war exists.
Burning the flag. This is a no-brainer, although those Americans who have been brainwashed to hate their country will oppose it, claiming that it is a violation of free speech. Such individuals, as a rule, hypocritically violate others’ free speech as “offensive” and so need not be listened to. Therefore,anyone who burns the American flag, or deliberately desecrates it, will be punished by law.
No foreign aid. This is the amendment that will be fought tooth and nail. Foreign countries will pour millions into traitorous American lobbyists and politicians to scuttle this amendment, both at the federal and the state levels. During the Second World War (with Lend Lease), and during the Cold War, trillions of dollars were sent overseas, either in cash or in material aid, to other countries in the belief that such aid would stop Nazi expansionism and would undermine support for Communist movements in those countries, since it was the belief -- the mistaken belief -- that communism sprang from the dissatisfied and frustrated lower class; in actuality, the communist movements came from middle-class power-hungry intellectuals; there were few actual peasants and workers in those movements (but that’s another story: read Eric Hoffer's The True Believer or any of his other books). Foreign countries learned through the years the technique of sucking off money from the American taxpayer to the tune of trillions of dollars, aided by mediocre, corrupt, politicians and bureaucrats, whether it was to buy a chalet at the south of France or fighting ebola or AIDS or poverty or ingrown toenails. Rulers in other countries were amazed that they could insult America or its leaders and they would still get foreign aid (Duterte is a recent example) and mediocrities like Kerry were eager to comply, to give away money that wasn’t theirs. The end result is that at present, America is close to bankruptcy, yet the politicians keep sending money to other countries for a variety of “vital” issues; these countries, of course, don’t give a damn about what will happen to our country or to our citizens if this continues, they just want more of our money. Therefore, the United States will not send money to other countries or organizations in other countries unless those countries are allied to us by treaty and are at war with our common enemy. Nor will other countries receive material aid without immediately paying in full value for said aid unless those countries are allied to us by treaty and are at war with our common enemy.
Term limits. The professional politician is a blight. Members of Congress will be restricted to serve for three terms in a particular elected office, although they may run and serve for a different elected, or appointed, office.
Puerto Rico. In a manner of speaking, the island has been in a state of limbo for over a century. Because the population has its own language and culture, and is so distant from the mainland, it will never become fully assimilated into American culture, nor should it. Its present commonwealth status has severe financial detriments both for Puerto Ricans and Americans too numerous to detail here. On top of that, as a Commonwealth, Puerto Rico cannot vote in national elections, so that it has taxation without representation. Lastly, a small but sizeable section of the population see themselves as a colony which must achieve independence, by violence if necessary, so that continuing with the status quo, or statehood, would prolong this open sore. Therefore, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is hereby declared an independent country.
Adopting all, or any, of these amendments would go a long way in eliminating political and financial problems in the country. What is particularly attractive is that almost all have bipartisan support, if past history is any indication. During the past decade the Congress received justifiable contempt and loathing from citizens for basically being obstructionist and not doing any actual work. These amendments would be a way to vindicate itself.

Don’t MOCK Mike Pence For PROTECTING His Marriage, COMMEND Him

Liberals were horrified to learn that Mike Pence doesn't dine alone with women who aren't his wife and doesn't drink if she's not around. They shouldn't be.

Don’t Mock Mike Pence For Protecting His Marriage, Commend Him

 Mollie Hemingway

Among the many norms broken by the media in the last year is the relative lack of profiles of the wives of the president and vice president. So it was nice to see a basic profile of Karen Pence, wife of Vice President Mike Pence, in the Washington Post. Even though Mrs. Pence holds political and religious views different from those held by most in the media, the article is mostly respectful of her as a person.
A problem arose when the story’s author marketed the piece on social media:
This particular tweet was one of many that Parker sent out to promote her story. This one went viral. People of various political stripes all assumed she was mocking the Pences for their marital conduct. On the Left, people found the protective mechanism horrible. Here’s a sample of their response:
To respect his wife, Mike Pence refuses to use a toilet after a lady has used it. He also does not eat at restaurants with lady mascots
Sincere question. How is this different from extreme repressive interpretations of Islam ("Sharia Law!") mocked by people like Mike Pence
@commiegirl1 who knew Mike Pence had uncontrollable sexual compulsions so serious he can't be alone w a woman who's not his wife?
We could go on, and on, and on. Clara Jeffrey, the editor-in-chief of Mother Jones, attempted to plumb the depths of misogyny evinced by Pence’s actions in support of marital fidelity.
Still other Twitter sages expressed profound disgust with Mike Pence calling his wife “mother,” though I can’t post their vile tweets so you’ll just have to trust me. My parents didn’t call each other “mother” or “father” and my husband and I don’t do it, but I’ve certainly encountered it across the country and globe, so the reaction against it suggests a certain lack of reading or travel.
Anyway, is Mike Pence a monster for not dining privately with women who are not his wife? What about not boozing it up at parties unless his wife is around?
Not only is he not a monster, he sounds like he’s a smart man who understands that infidelity is something that threatens every marriage and must be guarded against.
All these people mocking Pence for the protections he puts on his behavior must not know the people I know or suffer the temptations I face. They must not read the headlines about marriages ending due to infidelity. I have far too many friends who found their inhibitions lowered by alcohol and distance from a spouse. The end result of their lapse in judgment has in some cases been the destruction of their marriage.
I do a lot of work with religious people and used to be a religion reporter. In that capacity, I spent time in close proximity with clergy. When clergy in my church are sexually unchaste, they are removed from the clergy roster. My church also teaches that all people are inclined toward sin, so we tend to just treat it as a fact of life rather than something that doesn’t exist or only affects bad people. Anyway, I noticed that many of these clergy will leave a door open when women are meeting with them. Not only does that not bother me, I respect the heck out of it. That they do it universally doesn’t make me feel like it’s a comment on our particular relationship, but simply a temptation to guard against at all times.
Infidelity destroys intimacy, happiness, and marriages themselves. But it happens because of the strong temptation that exists every day for most healthy people. When marriages end, the associated costs are financial, emotional, and physical. Divorce tends to be hard on men, women, and children. It harms economic and health outcomes for children, and decreases women’s standard of living over the course of their lifetimes. Guarding against it is smart.
My husband and I have a wonderful marriage, one we’ve put a lot of work into. We adore each other and spend a lot of time with each other. At the same time, we meet people and form relationships with people of the opposite sex all the time who are attractive and interesting. We of course have rules for engagement. My husband likes to tell people he’s married early on after meeting them. I do the same. We both tell each other when we’re having meals or drinks with people of the opposite sex. And we make sure that we’re serving each other regularly, if you know what I mean and I think you do. (I’m talking about knocking boots.)
Physical proximity is important for that last part. Emily Belz wrote in 2010 about Mark Souder’s marital failure that forced him out of Congress. He was an Indiana representative who shocked everyone by stepping down after the revelation he’d had an affair with a part-time staffer who was also married. In her article, she notes that Dan Quayle had told Souder to move his family to Washington when he was first elected. Souder didn’t do that. Also mentioned in this article is one Mike Pence, also a congressman from Indiana at the time. Pence did move his family, and it paid off. In the article his wife discusses how he needs the kids and the kids need him.
If divorce rates weren’t sky-high and if infidelity weren’t a problem faced by millions of couples, mocking Pence for the means by which he keeps his marriage intact might make more sense. Heck, if the human condition weren’t such that we all find it difficult to do the right thing, the mockery also might make sense.
As it is, Pence’s smart tactics for avoiding the kind of marital failure that could destroy him, his wife, their family, and the lives of those around them is to be commended and celebrated.

Yes, men and women are sexually attracted to each other, and alcohol lowers inhibitions. And yes, that’s true even when dealing with friends or workplace relationships, because that’s how sex works. Good on Mike Pence for acknowledging these truths and knowing his limits. All married couples should develop their own guidelines to protect their marriages from the threats that we all face.

Defending The INALIENABLE Right To LIFE

Why legislators cannot alter the value system by which America must govern

Terry Beatley

The word “precedent” was used many times during Judge Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation hearing, but it was Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s questions that recalled William Blackstone’s iconic work, “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.” Blackstone affirmed the parallel equality of the “laws of nature” (the moral law governing nature and inscribed on the heart of man) to the “law of God,” the revelation of that law in the Scripture. Sen. Feinstein pressed Judge Gorsuch to agree that Roe v. Wade of 1973 which decriminalized abortion was not only a precedent but something now called a “super-precedent.” She insinuated it was solidly supreme.
As if to carve in stone the infallibility of the U.S. Supreme Court decisions by tacking on superlatives — no matter how incorrect and unjust such a decision might be, Sen. Feinstein and other dissenters to Blackstone’s “Laws of Nature and Nature’s God” aimed for supremacy over God’s law. In the end, they will always lose no matter how many “super-super-super’s” they put before the word “precedent” because God has already spoken and given us His Supreme Law.
Here it is: the right to life is inalienable, unalienable, absolute, immutable, unassailable, indisputable and undeniable. Supreme Court justices, congresswomen, nor a mob of misguided feminists who march on Washington give us the right to live. God does. In fact, God keeps stacking the deck in His favor making His “super-super-super precedent” on this perceived inconsequential matter of human life known through the realm of science even converted the heart and mind of America’s “abortion king,” Dr. Bernard Nathanson. He is the onetime atheist who cofounded NARAL. The science opened his eyes to the supreme law written on his heart, that the unborn child is his second patient, and that abortion is cold-blooded murder.
Dr. Nathanson told me in 2009 that “the bombshell [for me] was real-time ultrasound. It made everything come alive. It opened a window into the womb.” In his book, “The Abortion Papers,” Dr. Nathanson reflected on the tactics he and others used to establish abortion as a constitutional right. “A political victory achieved by such odious tactics is at best an unstable tyranny spawned by an unscrupulous and unprincipled minority. At the very least this disclosure of those odious tactics should compel those who are uneasy with permissive abortion to re-examine the issue .” If still alive, Dr. Nathanson might be glad that Sen. Feinstein is asking Judge Gorsuch to revisit Roe v Wade.
Dr. Nathanson grew to appreciate that neither our legislators nor our judges can alter the value system for which America must operate. It was settled at the birth of our nation when it was written in the Declaration of Independence. It’s the value system which recognizes the self-evident truth that “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Whether Sen. Feinstein likes it or not, Judge Gorsuch is bound by “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.” Neither she, nor any other senator, can undo it because those laws are written on the heart of man. Judge Gorsuch recognizes that they are written in America’s founding documents, and he cannot alter them, either. The intentional killing of innocent life — no matter how the procedure is linguistically sugar-coated — does not abide by our founding principles.
When Judge Gorsuch and future nominees are confirmed and the abortion cases are revisited, these Justices will have what the Supreme Court did not have in the early ‘70s: the science of real-time ultrasound showing what it looks like to abort a baby.
In his letter resigning from NARAL in 1975, Dr. Nathanson wrote that “the judgments of the Supreme Court were never meant to be infallible or eternal. And what if we’ve been wrong, if the Court should soon reverse itself on the abortion issue in the light of changing times and/or new scientific evidence? What an incalculable injustice will have been perpetrated. What an immeasurable irretrievable loss will have been suffered.”
The NARAL founder understood the fallibility of man’s perception of precedence and how it can never supersede “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.” The truth Dr. Nathanson and our Founders left behind will restore righteous precedent, justice in the courts and a catalyst to heal our land.

Michael Flynn Seeks IMMUNITY, Says He Has A ‘STORY To Tell’

Image result for Michael Flynn seeks immunity, says he has a ‘story to tell’

Joe Tacopino

President Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn is reportedly willing to testify about Trump Team’s ties with Russia in exchange for immunity from prosecution.
Flynn, who served as an adviser to Trump’s campaign and resigned as national security adviser after just 24 days, has sent the request to the FBI and both the House and Senate intelligence committees, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.
A lawyer for Flynn released a statement confirming there were ongoing discussions between his client and the intelligence committees.
“General Flynn certainly has a story to tell, and he very much wants to tell it, should the circumstances permit,” read the statement from Flynn’s lawyer Robert Kelner.
The agencies have not yet taken him up on his offer, the Journal said.
Flynn resigned after it became public that he had discussed Obama-era sanctions with the Russian ambassador before Trump was inaugurated.
The FBI and intelligence committee on Capital Hill are trying to determine whether anyone in the Trump administration colluded with Russia in order to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Senate Passes Bill To STRIP FUNDING From Planned Parenthood

Participants in an anti-abortion rally hold signs and pray as they listen to a member of Christian clergy read from the Bible, in front of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, in Denver, Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017. Anti-abortion activists emboldened by the new administration of President Donald Trump staged rallies around the country Saturday calling for the federal government to cut off payments to Planned Parenthood. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley) (Associated Press)

 Stephen Dinan and Bradford Richardson

With Vice President Mike Pence casting the tie-breaking vote, the Senate approved a bill Thursday to let states strip federal family planning funds from Planned Parenthood, marking the first successful strike against the country’s largest abortion network.
The bill, which already cleared the House and now heads to President Trump, rolls back an Obama-era rule that said states couldn’t deny family planning money to organizations just because they performed abortions.
While other clinics may be affected, both sides acknowledged the fight was about Planned Parenthood, which has been a target for Republicans in Washington and in state capitals across the country in recent years.
“The Obama administration wanted to do everything it could to secure federal funding for Planned Parenthood before they turned over the keys to the Trump administration. With our vote today, we prevented that from happening,” said Sen. Joni Ernst, Iowa Republican and a lead sponsor of the bill.
Democrats vowed political retribution, saying women are already anxious over the GOP’s agenda and will see this as an assault on their health care choices. Planned Parenthood itself blamed a “group of male politicians” for the strike.
Thursday’s vote was dramatic by Capitol Hill standards. With two Republicans defecting, GOP leaders had to rouse Sen. Johnny Isakson, who’s been absent from the Senate for weeks as he recovered from back surgery, to show up and force a 50-50 tie.
Mr. Pence, a longtime pro-life leader, then cast the tie-breaking vote.
It’s the first pro-life bill to be passed by the new Congress, and Mr. Trump’s signature will make it the first pro-life legislation to become law in more than a decade.
But the roots of the bill date back several years, after undercover videos surfaced purporting to show Planned Parenthood clinic officials negotiating the sale price of body parts from aborted fetuses.
While Democrats and President Obama protected the abortion network’s money at the federal level, GOP-led states rushed to strip funding themselves. More than a dozen states have acted to withhold money from Planned Parenthood.
In his waning days in office, Mr. Obama tried to stop them, writing a rule that banned states from discriminating against Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers when deciding how to spend federal family planning money, known as Title X funding, which covers everything from birth control and pregnancy testing to breast cancer screening.
Thursday’s vote overturned that rule.
The bill doesn’t reduce the amount of federal money spent on family planning, nor does it explicitly prohibit Planned Parenthood from getting cash. But it does give states the power once again to exclude abortion providers and send the federal money to other community-based clinics that don’t offer abortions.
A 2015 Congressional Budget Office analysis estimated Planned Parenthood received $60 million annually from Title X. The bulk of the abortion giant’s funding comes from Medicaid reimbursements.
Democrats cast the legislation as an attack on women.
“The Republican Congress is utterly consumed with contempt for women’s ability to access affordable contraception and lifesaving preventative care,” said House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat.
Democrats quickly sent out fundraising letters hoping to capitalize on the vote, telling women and pro-choice voters that Thursday’s bill was the first in a series of expected attacks.
“Our fight is far from over,” Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood, said on Twitter.
Planned Parenthood has become the biggest lightning rod in Washington politics, with both parties treating the $500 million the organization gets in taxpayer money as a proxy for abortion rights.
Battles over federal funding for the organization nearly led to government shutdown showdowns in 2011 and 2015.
Just last week Republicans tried to nix Planned Parenthood funding as part of their Obamacare repeal bill, but that legislation failed to gain enough support to pass.
House Speaker Paul D. Ryan has vowed to try again, saying he’ll try to use this year’s budget process to end federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
This week’s floor battle split the GOP, with two Republicans, Sens. Susan M. Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, joining all 48 members of the Democratic Caucus in backing Planned Parenthood.
The Susan B. Anthony List, a pro-life organization, said two of those Democrats — Sens. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indiana — could suffer for their votes. Both Democrats are up for re-election in conservative-trending states and claim pro-life beliefs.
“Susan B. Anthony List will work tirelessly in the months ahead to make sure their constituents know of their betrayal of the unborn and their mothers,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the SBA List.