In my home state of Idaho, during the recent primary and at the Republican State Convention, a phrase kept coming up again and again: “This fight is for the heart and soul of the Party!” The various factions in conflict within the Idaho Republican Party thought that gave special emphasis for their faction’s case. Actually, that thinking is pretty small potatoes (excuse the pun but this is Idaho). The fight we have going on is really for the heart and soul of America and the people of the world.
Everywhere we turn these days the various struggles here and around the world are between those that love freedom and liberty and the tyrants, dictators, narcissistic megalomaniacs and every day statist, a-hole controller-types that seem to inhabit almost every nook and cranny of every culture one could name. The biggest conflict of our existence is the never-ending struggle between those who want (or demand) to control every one else and those who reject the various attempts at control.
The natural tendency of the vast majority of individuals is to be free to live their life as they choose in a peaceful manner without interference and without interfering with others. However, that tendency always runs headlong into the 1-2% who, by golly, believe they were put here to tell everyone else how to live those lives. Or, they are the violent malcontents who create the problems within every civil society.
What most fail to recognize is that the controllers inhabit every portion of the political spectrum including that portion of so-called “anarchists.” The only difference is that the proportion of controllers that inhabit the opposite end, the Social Democrats to Communists, is much higher than the anarchy end of the spectrum. They are larger in number because the mass tends to go along with their schemes due to belief in the “Six Political Illusions.”
Compounding the convenience of negligent attachment to various liberal utopias, the vast majority of individuals also tend not to engage in the various political struggles of their time. That flows from the hope to avoid all the apparent nastiness and drudgery that comes with being active, involved citizens. Instead, they prefer to believe that a Republic somehow runs largely on autopilot and that somehow their complacency will be a ‘free lunch’ of good governance.
That leaves the various types of loathsome personalities free to occupy the space with open-field running in front of them. At best the electorate gets a mixed bag of benignly incompetent, statist-narcissists as candidates, then electeds, to carry water for the status quo. That leaves the field open for a small number of controllers to run the show. And the damage done continues to pile up, unresolved.
There will be no change as long as this “comfort paradigm” is maintained. Change only comes as an explosive series of reality checks which overcome the long held status quo. Those explosive realities began going off on 9/11/2001, politically, financially, fiscally and culturally ever since. With the center of both major parties failing to act to repair any of the damage done, they have instead proceeded to make it much worse. As our state GOP is learning it’s an evolutionary process, a “back-to-the-future” re-establishment of principles that have been corrupted or forgotten over decades. It’s not reliance on the same ol,’ same ol’ candidates, nostrums and the re-emergence of the Chamber of Commerce Republicans that’s going to fix ANY of this mess, they created.
Some will argue, as they drone on in various corners of the Republican Party, that the current compromised principles represents the “new reality.” They argue, very ineffectively but with passion, that it is they who recognize “reality” for the Republican Party of 2014. It’s amazing they do it with a straight face given the mess the entire country is in, largely because of the compromise and outright ignorance of principles by many on the right for more than 85 years. To them, a President such as Calvin Coolidge was an extremist, even though he was light years ahead in understanding the importance of a much toned-down presidency. Many Republicans and Conservatives have grown to promote the ‘modern’ imperial presidency as much as the Democrats and Progressives.
The one reality that the old guard establishment seems to fail at recognizing is that their time is running out, fast. All one has to do is to look at the graying visages of any Republican Central Committee. Virtually none of the youngest Republicans and conservatives coming on board right now have any solid connection or agreement with the old guard, Nixon-Bush Republicans. The younger ones see the failures of those Republicans as readily as they see those of the Democrat Progressives. They are smarter, more knowledgeable and very passionate on the Constitution and the Republic than their elders were at the same age or many of them are, even now. They’re wired and wireless and share information lightening fast. The short of it is; they scare the hell out of the old guard and, so, the establishment reacts with contempt and attempts to restrict and control them while smiling to their faces and pretending to welcome them.
However, the old guard/establishment cannot stop them. Hence the current travails of many state GOPs, around the country, just like Idaho’s. Can Idaho, or any other, Republicans mend their rifts? Or will the Republican controllers continue the slow disintegration and marginalization? At this point the answer, my friend, seems to still be “blowing in the wind.”
The Blog-and Punditspheres are once again agog lately with the failed state of Iraq and Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (or “Levant,” take your choice). They want you and me once again to agree to get bogged down in the sands of the Middle East. The same Left-Right, train full-passenger list of Bozos is trotted out on every pundit show to excuse away every mistake made, explain away every previous failure and point the blame to everyone else except those that caused those failures. The only question that remains is how many of us will once again fall for this sideshow and allow the United States to lose more blood and our fast dwindling treasure, in the largest global train wreck of the 21st Century (and maybe the 20th combined)?
It is really remarkable how we allow the same blithering idiots who set-up and put us into this mess continue to fill the airwaves with their prognostications and laughable nostrums to “fix Iraq.” Those in official positions that pushed and drove us there should be tried, convicted of public policy malfeasance and stripped of all their assets to be paid to the families of the military dead and wounded, tarred-and-feathered and “run out of town on a rail.”
They have bankrupted the United States, made us even more vulnerable to attack, and squandered most of the goodwill that was left us since WWII and the Cold War. As predicted, the destruction of Iraq has destabilized the Middle East and sent tens, if not hundreds of thousands into the Madrassas and subsequently into the creation of an ever-growing panoply of terrorist groups.
We have no more capital of any kind to expend, our “betters” have blown it all like the drunken politcos they are. Anyone that would either follow or show any tolerance of the NeoCon and Progressive miscreants, who continue to find new incompetencies to foist on the People, should all be drafted into the military immediately and shipped off to be our “boots on the ground” in every overseas conflict they have put us into.
To stop the devolving cycle of conflict, disengagement and more conflict, it must first be recognized that most Middle East (ME) countries should have broken up along very different borders decades ago. The borders of almost every ME country were drawn by outsiders and their various colonial or imperial empires. Nothing will be repaired for the current inhabitants until once again partitioned into traditional and historic borders. They will not look anything like today’s borders.
So how long will the current train wreck go on and how long until the next one hits? doesn’t appear we’ll have long to wait at this point.
In 2006 Gen. William Odom, former Director of the National Security Agency, was one of the few and first to break ranks and declare that Iraq was, “the greatest strategic disaster in American history.” Very few of his colleagues have done the same.
So…all the genius’ out there, Republican and Democrat, are once again getting an enormously expensive lesson in Realpolitik. Let’s hit a few of their names; Kristol, Wolfowitz, Cheney, Bremer, Bolton, McCain, Clinton, Feinstein, Pelosi, Panetta……and let’s not forget Bush and Obama. Then there’s a whole Yacht full of Generals and Admirals who simply follow along in order to protect their pensions and rank rather than do the honorable thing and resign.
The real problem is that the lessons involved have been and will continue to be paid by the front-line rank-and-file military members, the American taxpayer and our grandchildren, not the fools who get us into these Wars of Opportunity. Those Wars which all can see come at the expense of American security and our strategic defense posture in the world.
After attacking Iraq with “shock and awe,” expending hundreds of thousands of American and Iraqi lives, hundreds of thousands of other casualties, trillions of dollars, hollowing out the American military and moving toward plunging an entire region into endless war we come to the inevitable result. The Neocon-chickenhawks and Progressive-liberal warmongers each move through the media punditsphere shoring up their position with endless excuses, new and old justifications. So when will they pay the price? Or do they always get off scot-free?
The Bozos that have been running this bus off a cliff for more than a decade deserve nothing less than public trial, impeachment, imprisonment and perhaps even an oldtimey public floggin’ or two. My son keeps telling me, “we need a return to using the stocks.” I think he might be right. Instead, we do nothing to the perpetrators of all the follow-on death and destruction.
Every excuse that can be imagined will once more be trotted out to basically say, “It’s not our fault. No one could have known it would all fall apart!” That line of total bullshit is going to be run out in front of the public again and again in the coming months. They saw none of this coming. Not the dissolution of Iraq as a state, or Syria, Egypt or any of the others. All of our experts who demand we do as they tell us and then fail at every turn to see the outcome in foreign policy, in economic bubbles and monetary crisis, cultural and moral destruction of our entire country.
It’s almost as if they had no understanding whatsoever that virtually every country in the Middle East has completely artificial and arbitrary national boundaries drawn by the victors of WW1 and WW2 and various colonial empires (which in several cases are the same players). It is the same story in virtually every sphere of public policy that is being destroyed by the comic road show that is the Right/Left political and “expert” class. The track record of our “leaders” is abysmal and yet the American public continues to follow like hungry puppies after the bitch.
In March, 2003 I wrote the initial essay that became the Foreword (click on “look inside” the cover on the Amazon page) for the intricately researched “Petrodollar Warfare” by William Clark. That Foreword detailed, almost as a blow-by-blow script with near precision, the events that have occurred since then. It didn’t take a genius to be able to predict the flow of events that have transpired in that region or in our economy and policy structure since.
I’m just wondering if Americans are really starting to understand that the Left-Right ideological paradigm and its “expert” outliers are the real enemy here. An enemy that soon must be expunged from the American political structure and replaced with principled and disciplined individuals of apparently uncommon common sense. Or will they instead continue to play dumb and take their cues from the corrupt opportunists and politicians who infest the body politic like a viral infection?
We can have hope for only 2016 I fear as there doesn’t appear to be enough movement yet in 2014. The American public is still largely in a collective coma from the look of it.
I’ve been highly confused since the whole mess over Benghazi broke as to why finding out who said what to who and when has seemingly been so hard for official Washington and the media. That part should be very easy. Yet, it’s being confused and misdirected by both sides and I can’t figure out why the Republicans are going along. The Democrats are easy to figure out. They don’t want any of it actually public. The Republicans must have some other motive not yet apparent.
You see, between every embassy and military command of any significance, the State Department, Pentagon and White House, there’s a top-level communication system that keeps all listed distribution members informed in real time and 7 x 24. If you think the NSA’s got the rest of America covered, the federal government’s got all kinds of messaging, capture, archival and retrieval systems available to it. If you want to find out what happened just go to the CRITIC and FLASH traffic that’s time-stamped down to the millisecond and denotes who sent it, where from and the exact time.
Along with that, all issued Satphones and STU-III (and later upgrades) secure phones have the same archiving capability. They were designed by NSA. Those conversations between station personnel, the Embassy, and all the listed users in the distribution were seeing some or all parts of the conversations, directives and orders going out that night between all the personnel involved. It’s all archived and just waiting to be read. The question is; why isn’t it being demanded by anyone involved?
The only thing not recorded and archived within the military or state branches would be completely private cell phone conversations on commercial networks. Of course, we now know those are most likely held by the NSA anyway and should also be retrievable (remember, they designed the STU-III). At least the metadata. I wouldn’t be surprised if they maybe “had” the conversations, too.
Doesn’t anybody else think it’s odd that issue hasn’t been raised? Gee, it seems obvious when the Feds have everybody else blanketed that it would be pretty hard to say they have none of their own internal communications, wouldn’t it?
How do I know this? Because I both installed and maintained the systems that carried FLASH and CRITIC traffic. The system’s been upgraded since I worked on it but I guarantee the capabilities and comprehensive nature of the system have only grown better and more sophisticated. I’m sure the last upgrade was a dream only a federal contractor could love.
Within 5 minutes of any FLASH or special CRITIC communication going back and forth from an Embassy, ship, installation, phone or connected device or drop off those systems, all “need-to-know” generals, admirals, executive and state personnel, etc., would have seen it or been told by an aide. Even a few Congressmen who sit on the right committees or in the Speaker’s Office, would be in the loop.
This reminds me of the response I’ve received from every Congresscritter that I’ve given the 22 Questions for the NSA/DNI list to. They don’t want to touch it for fear of getting burned. So what gives here? Who’s yanking who’s chain and why? Why are all sides staying mum and coy about what happened that awful night?
Do you really want to know? Do you really care? If so, then demand your Congressperson get the FLASH and CRITIC, Satphone and STU-III/cell archives immediately! We’ll know what actually happened the next day.
I’m dismayed by the dissension and acrimony the idea of an Article V Convention of the States is causing within the Freedom, Liberty and TEA Party factions. The philosophical and analytical debates I have no problem with. What bothers me is the ad hominem and personal attacks. I find those to be totally unnecessary and extremely distracting.
I also believe the mis-characterization and ‘strawman’ approach to much of the debate is equally disheartening. The opponents of the Article V Convention seem to take most of their cues from the John Birch Society’s position and one of their lead columnists, Joe Wolverton. I have much respect for Mr. Wolverton and many of the positions he has exposited on over the last decade. However, for some reason, in this debate he and others seem to have lost much of their analytical ability and replaced it with scathing character assassination and condemnation by supposed association.
First off, to re-iterate for perhaps the 1000th time, an Article V Convention IS NOT a constitutional convention or “Con-con.” The last “Con-con” held produced the organic constitution we use today and the first Article V convention two years later produced the “Bill of Rights.” That gross misrepresentation (that a CoS is a “Con-con”) is where the opponents always seem to start.
Next, Mr. Wolverton has written extensively on how the proponent’s camp is infiltrated everywhere with George Soros operatives and his money along with a sordid list of leftists and leftist groups. In no meeting, contact, representative, group or presentation that I have attended, met with or heard from, in any of the five states I have regularly visited, is there seen one shred of evidence of Soros or his money or any of those leftist groups or their funding. Those groups were also nowhere in evidence at the last large planning session held at Mt Vernon last December by representatives from 32 states.
To the contrary, all of the state representatives of the Article V Convention, legislators and proponents I’ve met have been of the same class of freedom- and liberty-minded or TEA Party types encountered in meetings everyday. In the main they are true conservatives (in my book they’re called the “Remnant) and the type of Americans we need in all of our battles. The idea that some mysterious Soros or Progressive operatives are going to swoop-in and take over out-of-the-blue is just short of silly, when examined.
That is not to say that there are no insurgents involved anywhere in the other 45 states I haven’t visited. I would be more surprised if there weren’t any at all. Every movement has its insurgents and agent provocateurs. Does anyone out there think there were no British agents or Tories infiltrated all through the Revolution, the development of the Articles of Confederation or the new Constitution to follow? Or during the Civil War or since?
However, I think it’s fair to say that the Article V movement is, by far, obviously not a Progressive or Liberal movement by any stretch made. Or, one that could be hijacked anymore than the JBS is likely to be hijacked by liberals. Progressives and Liberals just aren’t that comfortable talking about the central principles ideas of the Constitution and their implications. They’d rather try to ignore it.
Which is another reason I don’t put a lot of stock into the idea that an Article V convention could be “hijacked” by the Progressives. They demonstrably don’t like to touch or be in any way associated with anything “Constitutional.” However, even if they do, given their lack of dealing at the straight constitutional level, I seriously doubt they would be effective or be able to overcome the super-majority of the truly Constitutional delegates (look at the make up of states legislatures across all 50 states and territories) that would come from the states. Which brings us to the next point.
The opponents of Article V CoS keep making the claim that we can’t mess with any amendments to the Constitution because “there’s nothing wrong with it.” Well, please forgive me, but there is. Even the opponents have acknowledged those problems for years and years but seem to wish to ignore them now. Shall we start with the 14th Amendment which opened the door to begin the nationalization process by declaring “equal protection thereby nationalizing the states? Or the fact that the new 13th Amendment at the end of the Civil War somehow displaced the original 13th Amendment which put the kibosh on Titles of Nobility and that somehow was conveniently “disappeared?” Or the next 13th amendment that was introduced on behalf of Lincoln at the outset of the Civil War saying the slavery WOULD NOT be abolished in the United States?
Or maybe we should talk about the enormous problems generated by the 15th, 16th, 17 th and 18th, only one of which was formally repealed. Two of them, the 16th and 17th were either never ratified or fraudulently so. So the idea there’s no problems in the Constitution that need fixing doesn’t stand much scrutiny.
On top of that there’s the abuses of the Congress and the Supreme and inferior courts. Congress has passed many abuses or outright usurpations of whole sections and clauses. They have passed laws that find no authorization source whatsoever in the document. Worse, when contested, the Supreme Court has upheld those abuses and usurpations against the American people. The Courts have developed methods and “construction” that contrive to find those abuses and usurpations constitutional. These “pretended Acts of legislation” and the bad decisions that follow then further extend the abuse.
Opponents of an Article V convention say, “Precisely. That’s exactly why we can’t have a Convention of the States (CoS)! If they won’t follow the existing Constitution, they won’t follow any further Amendments.” Forgive me, if that’s the reason we can’t have a CoS, then we’re already finished as a Republic. Congress will never pass the amendments needed even if we got a 50+% turnover of incumbents. We have a bypass process in Article V that was placed there for a reason, to be used when all the others methods failed. So, let’s use it and every other tool in the arsenal.
The purpose of amending any contract is to close “loopholes” that have sprung over time to be exploited by one party or the other. Or, to cover unforeseen circumstances or new events in the previous amendments and/or organic contract. The last century the conservatives, NeoCons, Progressives and liberals have each shown us where the “loopholes” and problems are in the Constitution. In some cases they’ve blown big holes right through it. Time to fix that.
Whether in exploiting the Preamble phrase “promote the General Welfare,” the limits of ” to regulate commerce with….and among the several states” in Article I, or in the Supreme Court’s hypocritical introduction of the “one man, one vote” concept into the states in Reynolds v Sims, or various Presidents’ exploitation of the Antiquities Act and Executive Orders, there are many compounded lines of Congressional, Judicial and Executive error/usurpation that can be corrected and adopted, at once, in a Convention of States. No language is bullet-proof, that’s clear. However, it’s also clear that some simple, direct and near-bullet proof language can fix a lot of bad situations through amendments.
There are no panaceas. Not in Nullification, Article V, Elections, Legislation, Executive and Judicial fiat, Revolution or Civil War; none. Every process has its flaws because humans have their flaws. That’s why people use all possible solution processes and structures to effect a solution until all options are exhausted and War and destruction is the last option on the table and highly likely to fail as well as we’ve seen more times than not.
I have just under 25 years of experience in the citizen-initiated Amendment process at the state constitutional level in Colorado. No would could conclude that the Amendment process is perfect but neither are humans. The legislature in Colorado has attempted to befoul the state Constitution many times with bad referenda that the people have turned down. The Citizens have attempted several initiated Amendments, some good some bad. In the main, the Citizens have been more successful with Amendments that hold government in check and expand freedom.
The opponents spend (way too) much of their time on the “fear factor” in trying to effectively “shout down” an Article V convention. The assertion is made that Congress would “control the process and make the rules, thereby controlling the convention,” when that is in direct contradiction to the process that is already underway via the application and approval Resolutions passed in various states legislatures thus far. Next they say, the CoS will simply ignore those Resolutions and all the rules and simply do what they want. Sorry, but if that happens the entire convention is automatically shut down and the delegates ordered to go home (and punished for their misbehavior with civil penalties) by each of their states as already defined in the Resolutions.
The opponents also confuse the “Balanced Budget Amending” applications and the “Convention of the States” applications. Those are two entirely different efforts. There is so much misinformation and misconstrued history that the opponents campaign has come to reflect a propaganda campaign, reminiscent of those they pretend to hate, when accomplished by state actors.
It’s time to back-off all the hyperbole, polemics and vitriol. The fear-mongering and paranoia seems to be most pervasive and reflects, I believe, a risk aversion far out-of-proportion to the task and means at hand. America is coming to an important crossroads, as it has only a few times in its history thus far, and the appropriate solution is necessary for the real risk of the times. A CoS application, call, conduct and conclusion would measure whether or not America does live up to the legacy handed to it by the Founders. Otherwise, it continues down the current path and simply slinks off, to continue degrading into the sunset, until the Republic completely implodes into a black hole similar to a dying star.
With 37 states as effectively “Red” states, in their legislatures and executive branches, strategically we have the best possible conditions in the last 50 years to call the CoS and get the best possible outcome of amendments. Each state gets 1 vote on each amendment for passage in the Convention. Then the package of amendments actually passed in Convention go back to the state legislatures for ratification. Only 13 “no” votes by those legislatures will then kill any amendment. Each amendment must be voted on separately.
It is highly unlikely that ANY CoS would be held prior to 2017 given the logistics and planning involved. There’s a lot of bad water to flow under the bridge before then in the further decay of the fiscal situation of the federal governments and the economic condition of the U.S. Those events and the next two election cycles, I believe, will accelerate both the favorable conditions and the necessity of the call for a CoS.
That analysis recommends that the two sides get together and agree on the best strategy for both Nullification and Interposition to succeed within the states. Then, use the best conservative minds (and even a few liberals–if they step up–after all they can’t be excluded even if they don’t have a controlling minority of the states) we have to also plan the CoS and the possible amendments and rules of conduct to succeed strategically across the states.
Prove that in the 21st century we have a new Remnant that is every bit up to the task as our Forebears in the 18th and 19th centuries (they had to deal with factions , too). Otherwise, I’d suggest the only other alternative is to prepare for the next Revolution or, at worst, the next Civil War. That is a much less desirable outcome, I would think, that all players do want to avoid.