The Policy Makers at the IRS are 95% Partisan and Don’t Need Orders before Taking Partisan Actions

Posted by PITHOCRATES - June 15th, 2013

Week in Review

Did the IRS follow orders to harass Tea Party groups?  Is there a smoking gun?  Probably not.  Because there doesn’t have to be.  Not when the policy makers of this ‘nonpartisan agency’ clearly think just like President Obama (see Most IRS, government lawyers donated to Obama campaign by Ashe Schow posted 6/14/2013 on The Examiner).

It is not just IRS employees who donated to President Obama in 2012, but lawyers working for the federal tax agency as well. In fact, lawyers at the IRS (and in every other government agency) overwhelmingly donated to Obama during the last election…

…the lawyers for that particular federal agency donated to Obama by an astounding 20-to-1 ratio, according to Robert Anderson, associate professor of law at Pepperdine University School of Law…

…Lawyers are relevant because they are the ones taking the lead in writing regulations, litigating cases, and making delicate legal judgment calls in borderline cases…”

Of the IRS lawyers who made contributions, a whopping 95 percent gave to Obama. And if you think that’s a high percentage, 100 percent of the lawyers at the Department of Education, the United Nations and – no surprises here – the National Labor Relations Board (you know, the pro-union agency that sued Boeing) contributed to the Obama campaign.

So there you have it.  A nonpartisan agency that clearly is partisan.  Well, at least 95% of them are partisan.  Making a smoking gun irrelevant.  For the president didn’t have to give any order for the people who support him and his policies to know what to do.  Because the president delegates authority.  Like all presidents do.  They put in people that support his vision.  And then let them do their partisan work.  And for President Obama that holds true even at the nonpartisan IRS.

There’s a piece by Herbert Meyer in The American Thinker creating a lot of buzz (see The Smoking Gun in Plain Sight by Herbert E. Meyer posted 6/3/2013 on American Thinker).  Getting a lot of traction on talk radio.  And in the conservative blogosphere.  Because it compares the IRS scandal—and President Obama—to Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany.  About as provocative as you can get these days.  Especially when you throw in the Holocaust.

Very few people are aware of this, but there is no document — not one — linking Adolf Hitler to the Holocaust.  Why not?  Because Hitler didn’t need to sign a document ordering the slaughter of six million Jews.  All he needed to do was to demonize his enemy in speeches at the Reichstag, on the radio, and from one end of Germany to the other — then hire thugs like Herman Goering, Heinrich Himmler, Adolf Eichmann, and Josef Goebbels.  They knew what der Fuhrer wanted, and der Fuhrer knew he could trust his henchman to get the job done — no matter how, no matter what may be the law — and to not bother him with the gory details.

Reader, take a deep breath.  Nowhere in this essay will I suggest, or even imply, that President Obama plans the mass murder of his opponents the way Hitler murdered his.  That’s absurd.  I am merely pointing out that President Obama has been going about the business of demonizing his political enemies, and then hiring thugs to destroy them without regard to the law, in precisely the same way that Hitler and his fascists did it in Germany.  This isn’t an accusation; it’s an observation.

Look at the record: From the moment he took office in January 2009, President Obama has spoken before Congress, on television, and at countless rallies across the country describing his political opponents in terms we haven’t seen before in the United States.   Time and again he’s insisted that Republicans aren’t merely wrong, but evil…

His rhetoric heated up fast after the Tea Party movement gave the GOP enough oomph to win back the House of Representatives in 2010, and as the president geared up for the 2012 election.  He urged Latino voters to help him “punish our enemies and reward our friends.”  He told his supporters at one rally to think of voting for him as “an act of revenge.”

So there probably isn’t a smoking gun.  For when 95% of the policy-making people at the IRS are like-minded and in lockstep with the president they don’t need an order from the president (or from anyone in his administration) to act.  There may be someone who gave an order.  But when you’re that partisan you don’t wait for orders.  Because you want what your president wants.  And you know your president will approve of your actions.  No matter how legally questionable they may be.  As long as the president has plausible deniability.  And when you don’t sign any orders you have plausible deniability.

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FT173: “It’s hard to trust the government collecting our personal data once the IRS admits leaking it to attack political enemies.” —Old Pithy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - June 7th, 2013

Fundamental Truth

We need to Trust our Investment Advisors with our Retirement Money

Trust.  It’s hard to get.  And easy to lose.  Trust is important.  We want to trust the people in our lives.  We need to trust the people in our lives.  If you’re in the hospital for a risky surgery you don’t want the surgeon to introduce himself like this.  “Hello.  I will be during your surgery.  They call me Dr. Butter Fingers.  Funny story, really.  I was doing a kidney transplant and the little bugger slipped out of my hands and fell to the floor.  Pity to waste a good kidney like that.  Anyway, I just want to make a few notes,” he said pulling a pen out of his pocket.  Which slipped through his fingers and fell to the floor.  “Oops.”

Planning your retirement can be a confusing and complicated task.  You will be putting aside a portion of your income for a very long time.  And you need to trust that your money will be there when you retire.  Not like those poor people who trusted Bernie Madoff.  Who lost everything in his Ponzi scheme.  That’s why we need to trust our investment advisors.  And we’re not going to trust anyone who introduces himself like this.

“Hello.  I’m Devious.  Mr. Devious.  And I will be helping you set up your retirement account.  Might I suggest adding the Brooklyn Bridge to your portfolio?  Some lovely bottomland in the Florida Everglades?  And here’s something that may interest you.  I got this fax from a Nigerian prince.  It seems that he has billions of oil profits in a bank that he needs to transfer to some other bank to get his hands on it.  All he needs is your checking account routing number.  And a small fee to make this happen.  Sounds like a great investment opportunity to me.  And I highly recommend it to you.  You can trust me.  Yes, sir.  You can trust good old Mr. Devious with your money.”

Fool me once Shame on You, Fool me Twice Shame on Me

Buying a used car can be a crapshoot.  For you’re really at the mercy of the used car salesman.  And if he doesn’t care if you ever come back to him to buy another car he can sell you a lemon.  “That smoke?  That’s normal.  You see, we just overhauled the engine.  That smoke is just the sealing compound of the head gasket melting into place.  Once it sets that smoke will clear right up.  Making that engine as good as new.  See?  You can trust me, Mr. Lying through his Teeth.”

So you happily and unsuspectingly drive away.  And then the darnedest thing happens.  The engine seizes.  You see, all of that smoke was the oil leaking into the cylinders and burning away.  So that by the time you got home the engine overheated and seized.  Because it burnt away all of the oil.  You try to get your money back but to your astonishment the contract you signed said you bought the car ‘as-is’.  And it even said the engine needed work.  So you’re screwed.  Because it turned out that Mr. Lying through his Teeth was not trustworthy.

Fool me once shame on you.  Fool me twice shame on me.  People rarely get ripped off by the same used car salesman twice.  Because once the trust is gone they won’t go back to that person.  Or that business.  Because that person has shown himself as untrustworthy.  As has that business who hired an untrustworthy salesman.  And it will be a long time before they earn that trust again.  If they can earn that trust again.

The Thought of Trusting Government to Collect our Personal Data is not only Disturbing but Frightening

Whether it’s a doctor who has a problem holding onto human organs.  A financial advisor who gives you bad investment advice.  Or a lying used car salesman.  We don’t trust untrustworthy people.  They can fool us once.  But once they do it will be very difficult for us to ever trust them again.  Because they have demonstrated to us that it is unwise to trust them.

The IRS has admitted that they harassed conservative groups.  And conservative individuals.  They audited these people.  And collected personal data from them.  Including a list of donors to the conservative groups.  People who donated anonymously.  Because they didn’t want to be politically attacked.  But the list of these donors the IRS collected found their way to a far-left website.  Who published these donors’ names.  Who then suffered political attacks.  Scaring other people from making donations to conservative groups.  Lest they, too, suffer political attacks.

This is why the latest revelations about the government collecting data on private individuals is so disturbing.  Yes, they’re data mining to find patterns to identify potential terrorists.  And they’ve been doing it since the Bush administration.  Yet they couldn’t prevent the Boston Marathon bombing.  And the Russians even warned us about the one bomber and his Dagestan past.  They couldn’t stop that with their data mining.  But they were able to shut down the political opposition during the 2012 presidential election.  This is what’s chilling about THIS administration collecting all of this personal data.  If they’re not using it to stop terrorist attacks just what are they using it for?

Whether or not it is directed from on high someone is using our personal data to harm the political enemies of this administration.  Which is a violation of the sacred trust the people place in government.  And once the trust is gone it will be a long, long time before we’re ready to trust them again.  For the thought of trusting an untrustworthy government to collect, store and analyze our personal data is not only disturbing.  It’s a little bit frightening.

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Preventing Future IRS Scandals is as Easy as Changing the Tax Code

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 30th, 2013

Politics 101

The Tea Party was the Driving Force in returning the House of Representatives to the Republicans

The IRS is very powerful.  It can seize your property.  It can throw you in jail.  It can ruin your life.  There is no other arm of the government honest people fear more.  Because it is so powerful.  America did away with debtor’s prison.  Because it was inhuman to jail a person over a debt.  Unless you owe it to the federal government.  Then all of that compassion goes out of the window.

The recent scandal of the IRS targeting conservative groups is especially chilling.  For the Tea Party was the driving force in returning the House of Representatives to the Republicans.  Infuriating the Democrats.  As well as the Obama administration.  When President Obama ran for reelection in 2012 he had little to run on.  The economy was horrible.  No one was talking about Obamacare because the majority of Americans don’t want it.  It was so bad that the Democrat president had to highlight his single national security achievement—killing Osama bin Laden—while ignoring his domestic policy achievement.  Obamacare.

Then Benghazi threatened to ruin everything.  An attack on an American mission that killed four Americans.  Including a serving ambassador.  Making matters worse was that it was an al Qaeda affiliated terrorist group that was responsible for it.  This did not play well with the campaign message.  ‘Osama bin Laden is dead.  And General Motors is alive.’  President Obama had already won the War on Terror.  So he couldn’t have a terrorist attack during his reelection campaign.  So they hit the Sunday morning talk shows and said there was an anti-Muslim video on YouTube that created a spontaneous uprising.  Where average Libyans on the street then pulled out rocket propelled grenades and mortar launchers from their back pockets.  And launched a military assault on the American mission.

The IRS silenced the Tea Party during the 2012 Election by Harassing them and their Donors

You don’t hear much about the YouTube video anymore.  During the 2012 reelection campaign, though, both the president and the secretary of state pushed it hot and heavy.  Even apologized for it in a video to play in Pakistan.  And arresting the obscure filmmaker on some other charge.  And it worked.  Benghazi faded into the background.  Despite the Obama administration denying the American ambassador additional security.  And issuing a stand-down order for forces that could have gone to help the Americans under attack.  This order coming about 7 hours BEFORE the last two Americans died.  To this day we don’t know who gave that stand-down order.  And we don’t know where the president was when all of this was unfolding in Libya.

But it worked.  The misinformation spun from the White House won the president a second term.  And people started talking about what the Republicans had to do to start appealing to women and Hispanics.  For the early postmortem said that was why the Republicans lost.  They turned off women and Hispanics.  But something was wrong with that conclusion.  Because the conservative base didn’t turn out on Election Day.  That’s why the Republicans lost.  To explain that some said the problem was that Mitt Romney wasn’t a true conservative.  And he turned off true conservatives.  But that doesn’t make sense, either.  Because Romney may not have been the most conservative Republican to run for president but next to President Obama the man was practically Ronald Reagan.  There had to be some other reason why conservatives didn’t turn out like they did in the 2010 midterm elections that returned the House to the Republicans.

That was the million dollar question.  What happened to the Tea Party?  Who were so instrumental in turning out conservatives to vote in the 2010 midterm elections.  It’s as if they sat out the 2012 election.  For we didn’t hear their voice like we heard it in 2010.  And now we have a plausible explanation for that.  The IRS.  They delayed and made it so difficult to get their 501(c)(4) tax-exempt status that some just gave up trying.  Finding themselves and their donors getting IRS audits both for their businesses and their personal returns.  As well as other arms of the federal government auditing them from the Department of Labor to the EPA.

Everyone wins with a more Simplified Tax Code except those in Power who use it to Attack their Political Enemies

Did the White House coordinate this?  We don’t know.  Yet.  The IRS commissioner visited the White House 151 times.  While his predecessor visited the Bush White House about 1 time.  So that looks suspicious.  And silencing the Tea Party did help the president win reelection.  For silencing the Tea Party sure didn’t help Mitt Romney.  So it looks probable that the Obama administration used the nonpartisan IRS to attack their political enemies.  As they were determined not to suffer another Tea Party uprising like that which lost them the House of Representatives in 2010.  Right now the circumstantial evidence is pretty damning.

This is not what the Founding Fathers had in mind.  That was the point of limited government.  So it didn’t have this kind of power over people it perceived as political enemies.  And the source of this power is the complex and convoluted tax code.  That serves those in power better than the people they serve.  Allowing them to reward friends and punish their enemies.  One would almost have to believe the reason why the current administration ran the deficit up to record highs is to further empower the IRS.  By creating the need for ever more tax revenue.  And the need for more strenuous collection efforts.  Not to mention using the tax code to facilitate a permanent state of class warfare.  For the government needs this complex and convoluted tax code to make sure the rich pay their fair share.  As well as using it to reward their friends.  And punish their enemies.

So perhaps it’s time to revamp the tax code.  Some are talking about it.  As they always do.  But there is so much resistance because of the power the tax code gives those in power.  And those in power quickly shoot down any talk about a flat tax or a national sales tax as being unfair.  Regressive.  Hitting low-income earners harder than the rich.  But perhaps this is exactly what we need.  So everyone feels the pinch of the taxman.  So people won’t be so quick to give the taxman more powers.  Because a lot of low-income people don’t stay low-income.  And one of the quickest ways of raising low-income earners out of poverty is with a better and stronger economy.  And there is one thing that does that better than anything else in the world.  Low tax rates.  So let’s take a look at different tax plans for a married couple filing jointly.

Federal Taxes Current Brackets Flat Tax National Sales Tax

(For the national sales tax we assumed everything above a certain savings rate is spent somewhere in the economy.  Those who earn more can save more.  In our example the saving rates are 1%, 8%, 15%, 20%, 25% and 30 %.)

Those earning only $15,000 will pay more under a flat tax or a national sales tax.  But the IRS becomes far less intrusive and far less powerful.  Because it will be so much simpler.  Giving honest people less to fear about.  And giving those in power less power to attack their political enemies.  Making it harder for them to cheat during elections.

Also, lower tax rates will bring money sheltered outside of the country back home. Which those rich people will invest here.  To get even richer.  And probably end up paying more taxes than they were before.  Because they won’t have any need to shelter it.  While all the new jobs they create will increase tax revenue further.  Because there will be more people working and paying taxes.  So everyone will win with a more simplified tax code.  Except, of course, those in power who use the tax code to attack their political enemies.

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Nazi Party, Adolf Hitler, Liberal Democrats and Totalitarian Rule

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 23rd, 2013

Politics 101

Before WWII there were many who Admired the Great Things Authoritative and Charismatic Dictators were Doing

The Nazi Party is one of the most documented rises of totalitarianism.   A system of government where everything and everyone is subordinated to the state.  Where the state comes first.  And the people are expendable.  Ruled by a single person.  A charismatic leader.  Who the people pledge their allegiance to.    And follow obediently to the ends of the earth.  We can learn a lot by studying what happened in Nazi Germany about the quest for absolute power.  For though party ideology may differ the path to that party is eerily similar wherever, and whenever, you look.

Of course, some are infatuated by an all-powerful state.  Not for the crimes against their people.  But what an all-powerful state can do.  Where enlightened individuals can do what’s best for the people without having to deal with a political opposition.  Just read what one beloved world leader wrote about Adolf Hitler prior to the outbreak of hostilities that embroiled the world in World War II:

Other musings concern how great the autobahns were – ‘the best roads in the world’ – and how, having visited Hitler’s Bavarian holiday home in Berchtesgaden and the tea house built on top of the mountain for him.

He declared; ‘Who has visited these two places can easily imagine how Hitler will emerge from the hatred currently surrounding him to emerge in a few years as one of the most important personalities that ever lived.’

This was written just a few years before Hitler invaded Poland.  Up until the war broke out there were many who admired the great things authoritative and charismatic leaders were doing.  Mussolini made the trains run on time.  And FDR was so smitten with Joseph Stalin and the great things he was doing in the Soviet Union that it broke his heart when the Soviets signed a non-aggression pact with the Nazis.  Allowing the invasion of Poland.  And starting World War II.  While splitting up Poland between the Nazis and the communists.  Basically removing Poland from the map.

The Left has used the Expanding Size of the Federal Government to Harass and Silence their Political Enemies

This is why Nazi Germany is so interesting as a study in politics.  For the Nazis rose to power within the political process.  They won elections.  And then used their legitimate powers to expand their power.  Often helped by the clever use of propaganda.  Misinformation.  And brutal criminal acts.  Which becomes easier to do as your powers grow.  And you place yourself above the law.  And become a nation of a charismatic ruler.  Instead of a nation of laws.

With the recent scandals of the Obama administration (Benghazi, the obstruction of free speech, the persecution of conservatives, etc.) some are making comparisons to Watergate.  While some even go so far as to compare it to Nazi Germany.  Of course, President Obama and the Democrats are NOT Nazis.  In fact, they are diametrically opposed to much Nazi ideology.  Just to give one example take immigration.  The Nazis believed in a pure Germanic race and opposed immigration of non-Germans.  While Democrats want to throw open the borders.  So the left are not Nazis.  But if you read the 25 points of the Nazi Party platform of 1920 you will see that the left employs many of the same tools to rise to power as the Nazis—and all totalitarian regimes—used in their rise to power.  Here are some of the 25 points.

9. All citizens must have equal rights and obligations.

12. In consideration of the monstrous sacrifice in property and blood that each war demands of the people personal enrichment through a war must be designated as a crime against the people. Therefore we demand the total confiscation of all war profits.

13. We demand the nationalization of all (previous) associated industries (trusts).

15. We demand an expansion on a large scale of old age welfare.

16. We demand the creation of a healthy middle class and its conservation, immediate communalization of the great warehouses and their being leased at low cost to small firms, the utmost consideration of all small firms in contracts with the State, county or municipality.

18. We demand struggle without consideration against those whose activity is injurious to the general interest. Common national criminals, usurers, Schieber and so forth are to be punished with death, without consideration of confession or race.

20. The state is to be responsible for a fundamental reconstruction of our whole national education program, to enable every capable and industrious German to obtain higher education and subsequently introduction into leading positions. The plans of instruction of all educational institutions are to conform with the experiences of practical life. The comprehension of the concept of the State must be striven for by the school [Staatsbuergerkunde] as early as the beginning of understanding. We demand the education at the expense of the State of outstanding intellectually gifted children of poor parents without consideration of position or profession.

23. We demand legal opposition to known lies and their promulgation through the press. In order to enable the provision of a German press, we demand, that:

a. All writers and employees of the newspapers appearing in the German language be members of the race:

b. Non-German newspapers be required to have the express permission of the State to be published. They may not be printed in the German language:

c. Non-Germans are forbidden by law any financial interest in German publications, or any influence on them, and as punishment for violations the closing of such a publication as well as the immediate expulsion from the Reich of the non-German concerned. Publications which are counter to the general good are to be forbidden. We demand legal prosecution of artistic and literary forms which exert a destructive influence on our national life, and the closure of organizations opposing the above made demands.

25. For the execution of all of this we demand the formation of a strong central power in the Reich. Unlimited authority of the central parliament over the whole Reich and its organizations in general. The forming of state and profession chambers for the execution of the laws made by the Reich within the various states of the confederation. The leaders of the Party promise, if necessary by sacrificing their own lives, to support by the execution of the points set forth above without consideration.

Both the Nazis and the left call for an egalitarian society.  For example, everyone should have access to health care.  While everyone is obligated to pay their fair share (i.e., the health care mandate forcing people to buy health insurance).  Both call war a crime against the people and want to confiscate war profits.  Among other profits.  The left wants to get rid of the profit incentive and capitalism while the Nazis wanted to just nationalize private sector industries.  The Nazis wanted to get the elderly dependent on the state by expanding old age welfare.  Just as the left does with Social Security and Medicare (and now Obamacare).  The Nazis wanted to implement price controls to help the middle class.  The left’s solution to the high cost of health care (in part) is price controls.  Forcing doctors and hospitals to work for less.  The Nazis wanted to severely punish those who are injurious to the state agenda.  The left used the IRS and other agencies of the federal government to make life uncomfortable for those who actively oppose their agenda (case in point the recent scandals plaguing the Obama administration).  The Nazis controlled education as “early as the beginning of understanding.”  The left had the government take over the student loan program to get more kids into college where they can further indoctrinate them.  The left controls public education.  That gets out the vote to help Democrats win elections.  And the left is always trying to create/expand state-run childcare.  To start indoctrinating children as “early as the beginning of understanding.”  The Nazis wanted to ban any free speech that did not help the general good.  As the state determined what that general good was.  The left marginalizes the one network (Fox) that doesn’t endorse the left’s agenda.  They’ve tried to muzzle free speech on the one media outlet they did not dominate (talk radio) by trying to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine.  And they’ve talked about extending that to the Internet to shut down any opposition there.  The Nazis called for a strong central authority with unlimited powers to protect the general interest.  The left has expanded the size of the federal government under the guise to protect the general interest.  And the recent scandals show the use of that growing central authority to harass and silence their political enemies.  Conservatives.  Who are today’s scapegoat.

JFK was more Champion of the People than Seeker of Dictatorial Power unlike Today’s Democrat Party

The Nazi party did not do well until the Great Depression.  When the masses were unemployed and suffering under the war reparations of the Versailles Treaty.  The people were angry.  Frustrated.  And felt they were suffering for the crimes of others.  Then along came Adolf Hitler.  And the Nazi Party.  They did not let this crisis go to waste.  The Nazis identified a scapegoat for all of their woes.  The Jews.  With a great crisis and a scapegoat the Nazis started winning elections.  In 1928 the Nazis had 12 seats in the Reichstag.  By September of 1930, after the pain of the Great Depression was being felt, they had 107 seats.  Making them the second largest party.  At the same time the Hitler Youth junior branches started indoctrinating boys and girls as young as 10.  By July 1932 the Nazis were the largest party in the Reichstag.  The Nazis co-ruled the country as part of a coalition government.  In 1933 the Reichstag burnt down.  Another crisis too good to waste.  The Nazis (who probably started that fire) blamed the Communist Party (KPD).  The second largest party in the Reichstag.  The Nazis got the KPD banned.  Giving the Nazis majority rule.  They then suspended basic civil rights.  Because enemies of the people were everywhere.  And the government needed to protect them.  Making Germany a police state.  The Civil Service law of 1933 began the removal of Jews from every office.  The Nazis then abolished trade unions.  Forcing everyone to join the German Labor Front.  Then in March 1933 the government passed the Enabling Law.  Transferring legislative power to Hitler’s cabinet.  Creating Hitler’s dictatorship.  As the future of Germany could no longer be left to the chaos of an elected body.  It needed the strong will of a charismatic leader who knew what was best for the German people.  And the German people followed his will obediently.  Because there were enemies all around.  And they needed someone unhindered by an elected body or law to protect them.

Liberal Democrats are NOT Nazis.  They have more ideological difference than they share.  But they do have one thing in common with the Nazis.  Their quest for power.  And in that quest for power they have used some of the same techniques the Nazis used.  Because all power-hungry people use these techniques.  They identify an enemy (Jews/conservatives).  They champion the people.  And then lie through their teeth.  Using their growing powers to consolidate even more power.  All the while the people enthusiastically support them.  Supporting the oppression of their common enemy.  Until that consolidated power begins to include them in their oppression.  Where all but the most devout Nazis regretted their earlier support of the Nazi Party.  As it was all but the most devout Nazis that suffered from the state’s oppression.

So who was that beloved world leader that wrote so admiringly of Adolf Hitler before the outbreak of World War II?  He was an American.  A Democrat.  Who actually went on to fight in World War II.  Against the Japanese.  Who went on to become president of the United States.  Fierce Cold War warrior.  And, surprisingly, endorsed economic policies that Ronald Reagan would one day endorse.  John Fitzgerald Kennedy (see How JFK secretly ADMIRED Hitler: Explosive book reveals former President’s praise for the Nazis as he travelled through Germany before Second World War posted 5/23/2013 on the Daily Mail).  Who may have had some faults.  But being a Nazi wasn’t one of them.  JFK may have wanted to use the power of government to make America better.  But he was an old school Democrat.  Who was more champion of the people than seeker of dictatorial power.  Unlike today.  Where it appears the Democrats in power use the IRS and other agencies of the federal government to oppress their political enemies.  Conservatives.  Kind of the way the Nazis oppressed their political enemies in Germany.  And like the communists oppressed their political enemies in East Germany.  Where our fierce Cold War warrior spat in the face of that communist oppression by proclaiming, “Ich bin ein Berline.”  I am a Berliner.  But today it is the Democrats that are the oppressors.  Not the ones fighting against oppression.

We’ve come a long way from JFK’s Democrat Party.

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Britain’s National Health Service is more of a 9-5 Business than is the American Health Care System

Posted by PITHOCRATES - May 18th, 2013

Week in Review

People in the IRS used their vast powers to harass people they didn’t like.  People who opposed the Obama administration.  Or the liberal cause.  In general conservatives.  In particular Tea Party conservatives.  People who donated money to the Mitt Romney 2012 election campaign felt the full wrath of the federal government.  Being audited by both the IRS and the Labor Department.  Scary stuff.  Now imagine the IRS being in charge of your health care.  And you’re a political enemy of the liberal cause.  Well, you won’t have to imagine for long.  Because the IRS will soon have that power under Obamacare.  Very soon.

What makes this a frightening prospect is the nature of a more nationalized health care system.  Where limited resources are stretched to cover more patients.  Resulting in shortages.  The need for rationing.  Even the need to deny services to some.  Because the budget just can’t afford it.  Such as being unable to provide health care services after the workweek is done because they don’t have enough doctors available.  So they farm out after-hours work to moonlighting doctors.  Like the NHS is doing in Britain (see Doctors being offered £1,350 per shift for out-of-hours cover by Claire Carter posted 5/14/2013 on The Telegraph).

GPs are being paid £150 an hour for nine-hour shifts to plug holes at times when regular staff are not working.

The firm, Harmoni, is also offering bonuses to doctors for referring a friend in a desperate attempt to staff the service, reports suggest.

The new revelations follow claims that Harmoni is struggling to find doctors to run the service and has resorted to using senior nurses to provide cover. It is claimed that GPs are reluctant to work for the provider because of concerns over care standards.

Despite questions over out-of-hours care, Jeremy Hunt, the Health Secretary, said GPs should not necessarily be on call at evenings and weekends because they work hard and have lives of their own.

Under Labour’s 2004 renegotiation of their contracts, GPs were allowed to hand responsibility for out-of-hours care to private firms such as Harmoni, which has contracts in London, the south east, the midlands and the west country…

It was also claimed terminally ill cancer patients had to wait eight hours for a doctor to visit them to give them pain relief.

The disclosures come amid concern that an extra four million patients are flooding A&E units each year due to insufficient out-of-hours services.

Flooding the A&E units (i.e., emergency rooms)?  People in pain waiting for 8 hours for pain relief?  This is national health care.  Now imagine a government using their powers to distribute these limited health care resources based on one’s political leanings.  Member of the Tea party?  Come back when we open on Monday for your pain relief.  A member of a public sector union and supporter of the liberal cause?  We’ll see you now.

Don’t think this can happen under Obamacare?  Only a year ago people were saying that the IRS wasn’t targeting conservatives in general.  And Tea Party conservatives in particular.  It turns out that the IRS was targeting these enemies of the liberal cause.  So it is likely we’ll be having the same discussion in a few years.  That it turns out the government was using its authority over the health care system to punish their political enemies.  Just like they used the IRS and the Labor Department years earlier to punish their political enemies.  If these past actions are any indication of future actions of an even more powerful federal government.

And the spirit of Thomas Jefferson weeps.  For he would see little difference between what the federal government became and what the British monarchy was.  Oppressive.  And arbitrary.  Where those connected to the ruling elite did well.  While those who dared to speak up against the ruling elite found their names on a list.  And faced persecution.  This is not Thomas Jefferson’s United States.  But what he feared.  If Thomas Jefferson were alive today he would be a Tea Party conservative.  Only he would be more aggressive in trying to reduce the strength and power of the federal government.  As he was more radical than conservative.  And would be unwilling to be as peaceful in his protests as the Tea Party conservatives are.

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Mass Murder and a Fallen Democrat Provide an Opportunity to Reenact the Fairness Doctrine

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 10th, 2011

The Left wants a Fairness Doctrine to Stifle Political Dissent

And here it is.  The big one.  What the Left really wants.  The ability to censor the opposing viewpoint so they can easily advance their agenda without political dissent.  You know what it is.  It’s called the Fairness Doctrine.  To stifle that vitriol we call free speech.  Our First Amendment right.  Which some are saying caused the Arizona Shooting rampage (see Clyburn: Words can be danger by Yvonne Wenger posted 1/10/2011 on The Post and Courier).

U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, the third-ranking Democrat in Congress, said Sunday the deadly shooting in Arizona should get the country thinking about what’s acceptable to say publicly and when people should keep their mouths shut.

Clyburn said he thinks vitriol in public discourse led to a 22-year-old suspect opening fire Saturday at an event Democratic U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords held for her constituents in Tucson, Ariz. Six people were killed and 14 others were injured, including Giffords.

Clyburn thinks wrong.  From what we’re learning, it sounds like the shooter wasn’t even aware of reality let alone the public discourse.  Of course, you wouldn’t know this if you rush to some kind of judgment.  Or are just using the tragedy to advance a stalled agenda.

The shooting is cause for the country to rethink parameters on free speech, Clyburn said from his office, just blocks from the South Carolina Statehouse. He wants standards put in place to guarantee balanced media coverage with a reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine, in addition to calling on elected officials and media pundits to use ‘better judgment.’

The Fairness Doctrine.  Statutory censorship.  You see, back then there were only three networks and PBS.  And the Fairness Doctrine was to keep them fair and balanced.  If they aired a story favoring one viewpoint, they then had to give time for the opposing viewpoint.  Or face a fine.  Sounds fair, doesn’t it?  But it’s just a fancy way to enact state censorship.

Here’s how.  Who’s to determine what programming meets the balancing requirement of the Fairness Doctrine?  The FCC.  Which is part of the executive branch of the government.  So the president had the power to determine what was appropriate speech.  And what wasn’t.  That’s a lot of power.  And JFK and LBJ put that power to good uses.  They used it to harass their political enemies.  Made it so costly to air a point of view opposing theirs that stations would refuse to air them.  It really stifled political dissent.  And made it a lot easier to pass the Great Society legislation.

Ah, yes, those were the good old days.  When you didn’t have all that messiness we call free speech.  The 1960s and 1970s were Big Government decades.  Times were good for the liberal left.  That is until Ronald Reagan came along to spoil everything.  For it was Reagan who repealed the Fairness Doctrine.  And ever since the Left has wanted it back.

The Left wants a Fairness Doctrine to Hush Rush

The party really ended in the 1980s.  Not only did they lose their beloved doctrine, but there was a new kid on the block.  Talk radio.  It was bad enough not to have ‘fairness’ as they saw fairness, but now there was more than three networks and PBS.  There was content all over the place that they couldn’t control.  And it really pissed them off.  Especially a guy by the name of Rush Limbaugh.  He was such a thorn in Bill Clinton’s side that some called the Fairness Doctrine the ‘Hush Rush’ bill. 

You have to remember how Bill Clinton won the election.  He won with one of the lowest percentages of the popular vote.  Ross Perot was a third-party candidate that drained votes away from both candidates.  But, more importantly, he turned the election into a media circus.  Everyone was following what wacky thing he would say or do next that few paid attention to Clinton’s less than spotless past.  And people were spitting mad about George H.W. Bush‘s broken pledge not to raise taxes.  You take these two things away and Bush the elder would have been a two-term president.  So Clinton wasn’t very popular with the people to begin with. 

During the Nineties, some 20 million people a week were tuning in to listen to Rush.  Why was he so popular?  For the simple reason that he held the same views as some 20 million people in the country.  And these people were tired of the media bias.  For them Rush was a breath of fresh air.  His radio show was the only place this huge mass of people could go and not hear the Democrat spin on everything.  And this was a real threat to the Left.  They blamed him for their failure to nationalize health care.  And the Left blamed Rush for Whitewater, Gennifer Flowers, Paula Jones, Monica Lewinsky, the blue dress, etc.  Hillary Clinton called the Lewinsky affair a vast right-wing conspiracy.  And if it wasn’t for Rush and talk radio, those things would have remained hidden. So you can see why they hated him.

The Shooting of a Democrat Allows the Left to Attack Conservatives

It was bad for Bill Clinton.  But President Obama has it even worse.  The FOX News channel has blown away the cable competition.  The Internet has come of age.  There’s more content out there than ever before.  And the old guard (the three networks, PBS and the liberal newspapers) are losing more and more of their influence.  In other words, they need the Fairness Doctrine like never before.  Because there is way too much free speech for their liking.  It’s just not a good time if you’re trying to be devious.

So when a mass murder comes along and a Democrat is shot in the head, they pounce.  Representative Clyburn uses this tragedy to advance the Fairness Doctrine.  Even though he knew little at the time.  But that didn’t stop him.  They have no evidence, but the Left has blamed the Tea Party, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman, FOX News, and anyone else who has ever held a contrary viewpoint.

So, what, then, motivated this killer in Arizona? 

Who is Jared Loughner

Well, let’s hear what a close friend of the shooter, Jared Loughner, says.  Bryce Tierney knew him since high school.  Even went to college with him.  And from what he says, Loughner doesn’t sound like he was influenced by anyone on the right (see Exclusive: Loughner Friend Explains Alleged Gunman’s Grudge Against Giffords by Nick Baumann posted 1/10/2011 on Mother Jones).

Tierney tells Mother Jones in an exclusive interview that Loughner held a years-long grudge against Giffords and had repeatedly derided her as a “fake.” Loughner’s animus toward Giffords intensified after he attended one of her campaign events and she did not, in his view, sufficiently answer a question he had posed, Tierney says. He also describes Loughner as being obsessed with “lucid dreaming”—that is, the idea that conscious dreams are an alternative reality that a person can inhabit and control—and says Loughner became “more interested in this world than our reality.” Tierney adds, “I saw his dream journal once. That’s the golden piece of evidence. You want to know what goes on in Jared Loughner’s mind, there’s a dream journal that will tell you everything…”

But the thing I remember most is just that question. I don’t remember him stalking her or anything.” Tierney notes that Loughner did not display any specific political or ideological bent: “It wasn’t like he was in a certain party or went to rallies…It’s not like he’d go on political rants.”  But Loughner did, according to Tierney, believe that government is “fucking us over.” He never heard Loughner vent about the perils of “currency,” as Loughner did on one YouTube video he created… 

Once, Tierney recalls, Loughner told him, “I’m pretty sure I’ve come to the conclusion that words mean nothing.” Loughner would also tell Tierney and his friends that life “means nothing…”

Tierney believes that Loughner was very interested in pushing people’s buttons—and that may have been why he listed Hitler’s Mein Kampf as one of his favorite books on his YouTube page. (Loughner’s mom is Jewish, according to Tierney.) Loughner sometimes approached strangers and would say “weird” things, Tierney recalls. “He would do it because he thought people were below him and he knew they wouldn’t know what he was talking about.”

In college, Loughner became increasingly intrigued with “lucid dreaming,” and he grew convinced that he could control his dreams, according to Tierney. In a series of rambling videos posted to his YouTube page, dreams are a frequent topic. In a video posted on December 15, Loughner writes, “My favorite activity is conscience dreaming: the greatest inspiration for my political business information. Some of you don’t dream—sadly.” In another video, he writes, “The population of dreamers in the United States of America is less than 5%!” Later in the same video he says,  “I’m a sleepwalker—who turns off the alarm clock.”

Loughner believed that dreams could be a sort of alternative, Matrix-style reality, and “that when you realize you’re dreaming, you can do anything, you can create anything,” Tierney says. Loughner started his “dream journal” in an attempt to take more control of his dreams, his friend notes, and he kept this journal for over a year…

After Loughner apparently gave up drugs and booze, “his theories got worse,” Tierney says. “After he quit, he was just off the wall.” And Loughner started to drift away from his group of friends about a year ago. By early 2010, dreaming had become Loughner’s “waking life, his reality,” Tierney says. “He sort of drifted off, didn’t really care about hanging out with friends. He’d be sleeping a lot.” Loughner’s alternate reality was attractive, Tierney says. “He figured out he could fly.” Loughner, according to Tierney, told his friends, “I’m so into it because I can create things and fly. I’m everything I’m not in this world.”

But in this world, Loughner seemed ticked off by what he believed to be a pervasive authoritarianism. “The government is implying mind control and brainwash on the people by controlling grammar,” he wrote in one YouTube video. In another, Loughner complains that when he tried to join the military, he was handed a “mini-Bible.” That upset him: “I didn’t write a belief on my Army application and the recruiter wrote on the application: None,” he wrote on YouTube. In messages on MySpace last month, Loughner declared, “I’ll see you on National T.v.! This is foreshadow.” He also noted on the website, “I don’t feel good: I’m ready to kill a police officer! I can say it…”

Since hearing of the rampage, Tierney has been trying to figure out why Loughner did what he allegedly did. “More chaos, maybe,” he says. “I think the reason he did it was mainly to just promote chaos. He wanted the media to freak out about this whole thing. He wanted exactly what’s happening. He wants all of that.” Tierney thinks that Loughner’s mindset was like the Joker in the most recent Batman movie: “He fucks things up to fuck shit up, there’s no rhyme or reason, he wants to watch the world burn. He probably wanted to take everyone out of their monotonous lives: ‘Another Saturday, going to go get groceries’—to take people out of these norms that he thought society had trapped us in.”

It wasn’t Vitriol, it was Insanity

Well, he doesn’t sound like a Tea Party guy.  Or a fan of Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman or FOX News.  He doesn’t sound like a religious guy.  He may have been anti-Semitic.  He felt superior to those around him.  He liked to dream and spend a lot of time in his imagination.  He may have liked the movie The Matrix.  Maybe even thought he was in a ‘Matrix‘ fantasyland.  He did drugs and drank at one time.  When he went sober, though, he seemed to go deeper into his imagination.  He was pretty certain that the government was controlling people with an insidious form of grammar.  And he wasn’t a fan of authority figures and thought killing a cop would cheer him up.

I don’t know, maybe it’s me, but I wouldn’t call this guy a conservative.  And I don’t think there was any vitriol egging him on.  I doubt any vitriol could compete with what was going on in his imagination.  This guy had serious mental issues.  He was unstable.  And dangerous.  And the only reason why he shot Representative Giffords is because she had the misfortune of being his representative.

So Representative Clyburn, and the far left, are wrong.  No one on the right is responsible for this tragedy in Arizona.  The shooter was just a nutcase.  Little solace for the victims’ families.  But it does say that we don’t need a Fairness Doctrine.  For it would NOT have altered what happened in Tucson, Arizona, this past Saturday.

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