Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Result of Denying "Natural Rights"

Again the controversy of trying terrorists in civilian courts vs. military tribunals is stirred up with today's verdict in the trial of Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani who was convicted on only one charge out of 285 counts against him. Many people are saying that the failure of the civilian court to prosecute on more than one count is the fault of using a civilian court rather than a military court.

The fault rather lies in the use of torture by interrogators, which is not Constitutional. However such interrogation tactics would not be allowed in US Military courts either.

The issue is much more broad than Constitutionality. The issue is whether as a nation we are willing to abide by international law and to abide by the law of "Natural Rights". The laws of "Natural Rights" were recognized and accepted in the United States Declaration of Independence which precedes the Constitution. Simply stated, all human beings have undeniable rights regardless of nationality or status.

Our mistake was to consider using such unlawful interrogation, and to proceed to break these laws as a government. Any one of us would readily admit that none of our Founding Fathers would have ever agreed that such torture was moral, right, or legal.

Those who believe in American "exceptional-ism" apparently believe that Americans are above the law while living in a Republic which is defined as a government of laws.

Friday, October 29, 2010

IF

If Obama and the Democrats had opened investigations into the fraud and felonious conspiracy of the banks and of Wall Street, American voters would have been able to believe in "change". But alas.

If the Department of Justice would have initiated prosecutions for the Sub-prime scandal as was done after the Savings and loan scandal, American voters would not be so angry as they are now. But alas.

If the "free traders", and the "de-regulators", and the "privatizers" and the "outsourcers" had not had a successful complete takeover during the last 30 years, the United States would not have had the economic catastrophe of 2008-2009. But alas.

If Americans had the sense and the guts to demand a halt to the political bribery in which our democratic political process is being held hostage, and demanded that big corporations be held accountable for their crimes, the American middle class and the poor would not be in free fall. But alas.

If frogs had wings, they would not bump their asses when they hopped.

Friday, July 9, 2010

What Fools We Are!

What fools we are...we who, granted by the Constitution control our own government. We have relinquished that control by apathy to a corporate "crime wave". We who are generally law abiding are allowing criminals, perpetrators of fraud, and felons to have their way. Among the results is foremost the "great recession" created by 30 years of deregulation of the banking industry resulting in massive fraud. Didn't we do this once already in the 80s with the Savings and Loan Scandal? Why can't we fund banking regulation. Why can't we enforce existing laws and prosecute this white collar "crime wave"? The answers lay in the immoral system of lobbyist and in campaign funding by criminals.

Where is the outcry in the media? What fools we are to allow giant corporations to dictate what the news is...what to report...what to investigate? Americans sit idly, spellbound by the media's spectacle of a demonic game of political bickering, rancor, and recriminations. They are selling tickets to a side show of fire breathers and sword swallowers who mock the fundamentals of democratic government.

What fools we are swallowing whole the "theory" of free trade and deregulation. The criminal corporations have destroyed American manufacturing and shipped it overseas along with millions of good paying jobs for the middle class; all for a mess of pottage...so that the last farthing can float upward to the plutocracy. What fools we are to swallow the idea of perpetual growth, rejecting sustainability.

Isn't it amazing...all the hand wringing in the "great recession" and the attempts to "stimulate" the economy out of the red and into the black. It is described as the "jobless recovery". Damn right! Some recovery! The reason American is jobless is that corporate America has no loyalty to American labor. They fight against living wages with every ounce and every breath. Who built the greatest economic dynamo in history? American labor! The wealthy class provided the capital but where would they be without the labor expended in the last 150 years? Capital must respect labor! Otherwise they are nothing! The pundits moan about "weak consumer confidence" and "lack of consumer spending". How can you have a consumer economy if you do not pay living wages? The WAR which the media is totally ignoring is the corporate war on "living wages".

The strangle hold of corporate power on our American government and culture is the bastard child of the United States Supreme Court who has given birth to the "personhood of the corporation" in the nineteenth century. The Court has gradually bestowed increasing political power on the American corporation since the 1880s while at the same time unwittingly robbing its citizens of their political power. The representation characterized by a Republic has been transfered from the citizens of the United States and bestowed on corporate boards. They are the ones who have "representation". The average citizen is totally ignored.

What fools we are to allow this to occur. It has been done under the banner of "conservatism".

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Do You Get Discouraged?

It seems quite evident that this nation, The United States, has never quite lived up to it's reputation. In fact in numerous cases we have failed miserably to be the place where one would find "...liberty and justice for all." Not only do we fail to deliver to our own but we tend to promote pain suffering death and misery to many other places around the world.

As a nation, we seem offended by any criticism. We don't want to hear it from other nations and we damned sure don't want to hear it form our own people. If an American criticizes American, that person is considered a traitor!

Our flaws and failures are so numerous that to someone who cares it seems overwhelming. It creates a sense of disillusionment. We seem to constantly tout and sing our good points only to realize that we are fooling ourselves. Most others see us for what we are...arrogant, self centered, and greedy.

The majority of foreigners seem to admire many elements of American society and culture but still hold a sense of dismay that we do certain things around the world that we do. They wonder how we could be so callused and self serving...so willing to exploit anyone anywhere to get our way. We seem so willing to dictate to everyone how they should conduct their matters of policy,
yet are unwilling to live by the same policies we demand of others.

Should a nation base its policies on mere self-interest? Should a moral standard be an essential element of a nations policies both at home and abroad?

We have so many good laws on our books and in our history...but we do not enforce them. We virtually ignore white collar crime. We visit war crimes on innocent civilians around the world and no one is held accountable. We created a climate of human torture from the highest levels of government, yet no official has been held accountable, or placed on trial. Its as if the catch phrase "National Security" is the excuse for doing any thing we want whether its legal or not. Our government violates our bill of rights every single day and no one seems able to stop it. We have traded off the most precious founding ideas of the nation. ...and for what? To make money? Our nation is a great whore...not out of desperation but out of greed.

Many Americans would love to see a drastic change in all this! Many work to that end...but it seems we make little progress. What's wrong? People do have a sense of morality. Why cannot that sense of right be applied to our government?

Do you get discouraged with this endless battle.........because it seems that we are loosing it?

We should never give up making our world a better place. We should demand morality from our government not the promotion of our "national interests".

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Monday, April 26, 2010

Corporate Self-Sacrifice For The Common Good?

New interpretations of old policies have come to the forefront. The United States Supreme Court has historically bestowed the rights of natural persons on corporate legal persons...the same rights of a person with blood in their veins...resulting in "unlimited exercise of the First Amendment and Free Speech" rights for corporations.

The stated purpose of any corporate legal person is in its charter, and does not include self-sacrifice for the common good. The corporation, a legal person by virtue of the 14th amendment and the Supreme Court ruling of 1886, can never sacrifice its purpose for the common good as can a natural person. The corporation's individual interests must always come first! The common good can never come first! To do so would violate its charter.

Immediately following the events of December 7, 1941 at Pearl Harbor, thousands of Americans, "natural persons", flocked to Armed Forces recruitment centers, volunteering to fight for the United States. Knowing that they might be killed in the war, their act of volunteering for military duty was an act of self-sacrifice. Thousands of them were in fact sacrificed on their country's altar. Are corporations so noble?

The First Amendment to the Constitution states "...Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech...". But the Supreme Court has done just that! It has granted "freedom of speech" to legal persons with the financial power to overwhelm the free speech of "natural persons" with corporate free speech. Any fool would conclude that the "free speech" of a multi billion dollar corporation could easily drown out the free speech of a natural person. It is like listening for a kitten in a howling hurricane! The natural person's political power is limited in numerous respects. The political power of the corporate legal person is limited only by the amount of its profits and how much the corporation is willing to invest in the political process to obtain favorable legislation to its self centered purpose. How can the meager political contribution of a natural person compete with the billions in profits? Yet the Supreme Court has ruled that this corporate take-over of the political process is legal and Constitutional.

When natural persons are convicted of felonies, they loose some of their human rights. When a corporate legal person is convicted of a felony, they pay their lawyers and their fines but never loose any of these "rights" which have been bestowed by the Supreme Court. In fact recent decisions by the Court have removed all restraints on how much money corporations can pour into our political process. Corporate legal persons are in the process of creating a blizzard of political influence for policies and legislation favorable to the goals of the corporation and with little regard for the common good.

It is obvious that corporations possess advantages which no natural person could ever possess. Their advantage is a financial one and is massive.

In our form of government called the Republic, representation is of supreme value. Elected officials are required to represent their constituents in the halls of government. Corporations are made up of thousands of stock holders and employees all of whom are represented by their individual elected representatives as "natural persons". Why are those same natural persons allowed a second powerful form of representation as a collective, as a legal person, as a corporation, with only self centered goals? Those particular natural persons are being represented in two ways: first as an individual natural person, and secondly as a collective corporate legal person.

The conclusion of any thinking natural person would be that those same natural persons who are stock holders and employees have a disproportional financial advantage in representation. The corporations of which they are a part make a two-pronged attack: contributions to political campaigns, and full time lobbyists in the Legislative branch of the government...all gifts of unlimited political power by the United States Supreme Court. This power of PACs and corporate money is a large and complex issue of influence peddling and needs careful scrutiny and review in an effort to return political power to the common man and for the common good. The political power of the average citizen has been stolen and buried under a mountain of money.

Corporate legal persons must be denied the same full rights of natural citizens. They do not deserve duplicate, expanded representation because their motives are parochial and their focus is never on the common good but rather is totally self-centered.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

There Seems to be a Law

There seems to be a law: Individuals and groups with power usually take advantage of those without power. Most of us never have access to power over others but when we do, the temptation arises to abuse it.

Most of us have been on the wrong end of the power struggle. We've had a boss or someone in authority who took advantage of their power over us. On the other hand, we have also experience the kindness of a person of power who refused to abuse it and graciously granted benevolence to us.

Our choices allow us to grant our support or withhold it to individuals or organizations who wield power. Make those choices carefully in your lifetime. Most of the world's religions urge these choices, be a friend to the helpless, the needy, the powerless. Be compassionate. Put yourself in someone's place. There is a nobler attitude, higher in priority than the luxuries of life.

As a historian, perhaps I have an enhanced awareness of the untold misery which human beings have visited on other humans in the past 500 years. To me the supreme lesson of history would simply be the "golden rule". The more history I have learned, the more disappointed I have become in the actions of my government, from the murderous destruction of the Native Americans to the murderous destruction of the Philippine people who wanted only to govern them selves as do we.

It has been easy to deride the idea of communism for it's ruthless abuse. But we need to analyze what created communism. It was the abusive power of capitalism. Some have called this "savage capitalism". Historically in the confrontation of capital and labor, capital has had the power. From this came the squalor and the unlimited misery which characterized the world of Charles Dickens. In his "Tale of Two Cities", London and Paris were really the same city; one rich, one poor. The book opens, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going the other way."

Today we hear the screams of those who think their money is ripped from them and given to lazy worthless scum..."redistribution of wealth" they call it. Savage capitalism is the "redistribution of wealth" from the poor upward to the rich. This is the shame of the abuse of economic power. This capitalism required 10 year old children to work in mines or locked in factories. This capitalism meant that a worker injured for life on the job got nothing but poverty. This shame created the French Revolution. This shame created the age of colonialism, slavery, and on and on. The same evil lurks in the modern world. On which side of the scales of power will you stand in your lifetime...with and for the powerful or with and for the weak, the powerless? Many of the choices of your life will be related to this question.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Video Released of US Military Helicopter Pilots Slaughtering 12 Iraqi Civilians


collateral murder - wikileaks from Jo Do on Vimeo.

Yesterday, WikiLeaks released a video showing U.S. military pilots, shooting from an Apache helicopter, slaughtering twelve Iraqi civilians in 2007, including a Reuters photojournalist and his driver. The dead included several Iraqis who showed up at the scene a few minutes later to carry away the dead and wounded (including two of their children).  The video is truly gruesome and difficult to watch even for the most cynical person, but it should be seen by everyone with responsibility for what the U.S. has done in Iraq and Afghanistan (i.e., every American citizen).  Reuters had been trying to obtain obtain this video for two years through a FOIA request, but had been met with stonewalling by the U.S. military.  The video shows that military officials made categorically false statements about what happened  there and were clearly engaged in a cover-up.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Separation of Church and State

The modern era has produced multiple examples of the reasons why separation of church and state is not only good philosophy but good practice. Russia, for example, after the revolution of 1917, insisted that its citizens not engage in religious practice nor acknowledge their faith in god. Consider Germany who reviled everything Jewish, burned synagogues, and murdered people only because they were Jewish. Look at Israel, who for 60 years has driven Muslims out; allowing only Jews to immigrate in. Take the Islamic Republic of Iran, who issues international death warrants for those who may have the audacity to criticize their religious teachings or leaders and denies that the European Jewish holocaust ever happened.

Why would American citizens ever wish to go backward into religious bigotry in attempting to establish a particular faith as the official religion of America? They are attempting to establish something which never existed while claiming that the Nation was founded on religious principles. Not so! The nation was founded on the ideas of liberal democracy which was originally a creation of the Greek city states more than 2,000 years ago and was anything but a religious movement.

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams were the founding fathers who inducted the idea of separation of church and state into the national conscience...having been born about 50 years after the debacle of the Salem witch trials and the experiment of theocracy in Massachusetts. Over about 2-3 years more than 200 persons were jailed on the mere suspicion of witch craft. A return to this kind of thinking will accompany an official recognition of a national religion.

It is both wise and practical to maintain the principle and practice of the separation of church and state...practical because we are only human and can make gross mistakes while at the same time believing with great sincerity we are doing the right thing...wise because no examples of a successful marriage of church and state, where equality reigns, can be found.


Monday, March 22, 2010

"Right" to build in Jerusalem?

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel says that Israel has a "right" to build Jewish settlements in Jerusalem. How so? These settlements automatically exclude non Jews. The land is not a part of Israel and is occupied like Russia occupied eastern Europe. These Jewish settlements end up being armed garrisons. What nation on earth has the right to build an armed racially segregated garrison in someone else's country? Apparently Israel thinks they do.

The Israeli reaction to any resistance is the claim of antisemitism. Some Israelis are saying President Obama is antisemitic. It is not antisemitic to resist any nation's policies which are based on racial and religious prejudice.

What is a "Jewish" state? Is that anything like a Episcopalian state? or a Mormon state? or a Muslim state? Perhaps the state of Israel seeks to protect individuals who's heritage is Jewish and to offer their country as a safe haven from persecution. That is legitimate considering the various persecutions of the past but does Israel have to be a "Jewish state" in order to accomplish that goal?

Certain methods of "protecting" persons of Jewish heritage are deplorable. Taking land by force from it's owners without compensation is wrong. Pushing the inhabitants out so that the demographics of the state of Israel are guaranteed to be a "democratic" majority of Jews is wrong. Allowing immigration of only Jews excluding others is wrong. How is that democracy...officially engineering the dominance of one race? That sounds like the history of 20th century Europe. Only yesterday Secretary Clinton speaking to the AIPAC said, "You cannot have a 'Jewish' state and a democratic state." She therefore called again for a two state solution. President Carter has described this Israeli policy as apartheid. South Africa of decades past failed in this attempt! That is like the United States history of denying Native Americans citizenship and participation in democracy.

Palestinians need the right to participate in the creation of their own well being. They need jobs, land, access to water, and participation in the political process. They need their own country! If Israel continues to dominate them, peace will never come. If Israel does not change these policies, they cannot claim to be a democracy any more than America could as half slave and half free. The United States historically unrestrained support of these immoral policies is wrong and the rest of the world can clearly see it. Why can't we? The position of the United States in the world has been diminished by our support of certain unjust policies.

Israel should like all nations, including the United States, provide an atmosphere of equality for it's inhabitants and equal opportunity. Palestinians cannot be denied the rights which they deserve as human beings.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Poetry by Hemmingway

The Age Demanded
by Earnest Hemmingway

The age demanded that we sing, and cut away our tongues.
The age demanded that we flow, and hammered in the bung.
The age demanded that we dance
And jammed us into iron pants.
And in the end the age was handed
the sort of shit that it demanded.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Fwd: Whereas considering the U-2



---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: lorenzo jones <lorenzo@hughes.net>
Date: Thu, Feb 4, 2010 at 4:01 PM
Subject: Whereas considering the U-2
To: lorenzo jones <lorenzolemon@gmail.com>


 

 

 

 

 

WHEREAS, considering the U.S. Supreme Court's decision altering many years of restraint of unfettered corporate political contributions, and

 

WHEREAS, President Barack Obama has made a call for the Congress to create new laws which would impede such unlimited contributions, be it

 

RESOLVED, that the Texas Democratic Party join it's voice to the call for "forceful legislation" which would countermand the U. S. Supreme Court decision concerning the "stampede of special interests' money" for political campaigns and Congressional lobbyists, and resist this  long-term trend which minimizes the political power of the citizens of Texas, while maximizing the political power of worldwide special interests.




--
    The past is never dead. It's not even past." William Faulkner
Visit my bloghttp://wwwlearn-past.blogspot.com/

The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, 1918

"Let him who thinks that War is a glorious golden thing, who loves to roll forth stirring words of exhortation, invoking Honor and Praise and Valor and Love of Country with as thoughtless and fervid a faith as inspired the priests of Baal to call on their own slumbering deity...let him look at a little pile of sodden grey rags that cover half a skull and a shin bone and what might have been its ribs, or at this skeleton lying on its side, resting half-crouching as it fell, supported on one arm, perfect but that it is headless, and with the tattered clothing still draped around it; and let him realize how grand and glorious a thing it is to have distilled all Youth and Joy and Life into a foetid heap of hideous putrescence. Who is there who has known and seen who can say that Victory is worth the death of even one of these?" Roland Leighton
"The old lie: Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori.":Sweet and fitting it is to die for one's country. Lieutenant Wilfred Owen, who's parents received the telegram of his death as the church bells rang in celebration of the Armistice on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, 1918.

Monday, January 25, 2010

What Makes Victory so Desirable?

The rhetoric of recent years about the Iraq War and the Afghanistan War has included the call for victory. But is that victory "at all costs"?...A term used at times when fighting battles to hold a position or to take an objective "at all costs". The term means no matter how many casualties, secure the objective; even if everyone dies.

Are we to consider the costs of our wars? Is there ever a time when the costs are too high to proceed? Can the costs be too high to continue after having initiated war? Do we have to finish all wars just because we engaged?

World War I started Aug. 2 1914 and in five months more than 800,000 Germans had become casualties. French and Austro-Hungarian casualties came to 1,000,000 each. Russian casualties amounted to 2,000,000. British 125,000. That's about 5 million casualties in 5 months. No one had achieved the advantage or "the victory" so desired. And what was some men's desire was the ultimate nightmare for millions of others. What they had achieved was stalemate and they spent the next 3 years in stalemate while these casualties dramatically increased. The winter offensive in early 1915 added 800,000 Austrian casualties and achieved nothing. Thousands froze to death when after exhaustion they would fall asleep to never awake. All for the call of victory. Those were the days when General's sons and King's sons were also offered up on the alter to achieve victory.

The leaders continued to believe that "victory lay just ahead and could be achieved with just one or two more effusions of sacrificial blood" as stated by G.J. Meyer in A WORLD UNDONE. There was no victory for the ones who died or for their families.

What price victory? Do our goals make any more sense than the goals for which literally millions died in WWI 1914-1918, only 4 years?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Open Letter to The President

Dear Mr. President,

We are only human. We are disappointed. How could we not be? We believed that you would attack what we think is the basic problem in Washington DC. The Massachusetts senate election shows how disappointed we are. We thought you would not let the big issue be bumped down for a later date. We thought your criticism of "business as usual in Washington DC" meant you would at least make the attempt right away to change how it has worked for such a long time. Were we nieve?

When one looks at the approval ratings of the US Congress they have continually slid downward for many years. Talk about the "slippery slope"... Why has that happened? All the movies make "hay" out of government distrust, incompetency, and snooping on it's citizens. Most conversations about politics these days have several references to the influence of money and lobbyist. People are very disgusted with "how it works" there in DC.

There are really a lot of good hard working law abiding citizens in this country. They don't generally take bribes or pass off shoddy products and workmanship. There may be at times some real B.S. when it comes to advertising but we're kind of used to that. So are we supposed to get used to "politics as usual"? The middle class is largely an honest bunch of folks, but"honest" doesn't seem to be the adjective frequently used in describing politicians.

That was the big issue we trusted you with Mr. President. We were hoping that you would find a way to start making politicians be more honest. We can't afford the big payoffs to get our agenda moved to the top. We're just ordinary people. Our emails, calls, and letters aren't noticed. We just don't have the money to get "our representatives" to listen to us. Seems like money is the only thing they do actually listen to. We thought this was the chance of a lifetime for the ordinary people to get a grip on our government...to do what The People really want done. That's why you got elected Mr. President.

When we call this the big issue, that's what we mean. If real progress could be made on money for political campaigns, then all issues would fall in behind that. Do you understand what we mean? We are talking about lobbyists. We are talking about bribes! Bribes and corruption are the hallmark of backwards and undeveloped nations. Is that what we have become? Is it normal, greasing someone's palm?

Perhaps there is time to turn over a new leaf. If not, at some point the American public will be fed up. They are close. Eventually they will figure out a way to take their government back. Don't count that out!

Your friend and loyal citizen,
Judson Malone

Friday, January 15, 2010

War

"War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debt and taxes; and armies and debts and taxes are the known instruments for the bringing the many under the domination of the few" James Madison

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Fwd: New Year Wish List

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: David Van Os - Notes From a Texas Patriot <david@texas-patriot.com>
Date: Wed, Jan 6, 2010 at 5:04 AM
Subject: New Year Wish List
To: lorenzolemon@gmail.com


Notes from a Texas Patriot
David Van Os
 
January 6, 2010 
Dear Friends:
 
To share some food for thought, here is my wish list for the new year and beginning new decade.  Admittedly my list is idealistic.  The only thing that makes us think there is a difference between  idealism and realism is our unwillingness to dare.
1.    Health Care

The current health care bills are scrapped; President Obama asserts leadership and appoints a task force chaired by Dr. Howard Dean to write a new bill; the Dean task force writes a bill that provides universal access to health care, forces competition, regulates insurance premiums, profits, and coverage, allows imported drugs, repeals the health insurance industry's antitrust exemption, and does not trample on individual freedom by forcing people to purchase anything as a condition of life in America; Obama exercises his new-found leadership muscle and insists that Congress pass it; a newly energized public turns out in huge rallies to support the bill; Reid and Pelosi follow suit; the Senate Democratic Caucus warns Joe Lieberman he will be stripped of his committee and subcommittee chairmanships if he doesn't support the basics of the bill;  the bill passes and America's health care delivery system joins the 21st century. 

2.    Economy/Labor Relations

The Employee Free Choice Act is enacted into law; the Taft-Hartley Act prohibitions on secondary picketing and boycotting are repealed; Section 14(b) of the Taft-Hartley Act is repealed; federal labor law is amended to ban the permanent replacement of workers engaged in a legal strike; and a revitalized American labor movement grows rapidly to re-establish collective bargaining as the principal model for American labor relations, so as to eliminate the lowering of wages as an element of competition among businesses.

3.   Constitution/Bill of Rights

The Patriot Act expires without renewal.  A presidential directive bans all electronic surveillance by employees, agents, or contractors of the U.S. government except by judicial search warrants obtained through legal processes. 

4.   The Rule of Law

Because taking the United States of America to pre-emptive war on the basis of deliberate lies to Congress and the people and therefore killing thousands of innocent human beings without just cause is not an acceptable political judgment, George W. Bush is indicted and prosecuted for murder under the proposal by famed prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi in his book, The Prosecution of George Bush for Murder.

5.   The Rule of Law

Because torture is not a matter merely of bad judgment but is an intolerable violation of well-established law, in preservation of the rule of law Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, Gonzales, and all other persons in positions of authority who ordered or approved torture are brought to justice for their crimes.

6.   Environment

The human race collectively wakes up as a species and stops overheating its atmosphere and poisoning its own air, water, and food.  

7.   Good Government

Paul Krugman replaces Geithner as Secretary of the Treasury; James K. Galbraith replaces Summers as presidential economic advisor; Bill Richardson replaces Gates as Secretary of Defense; Maxine Waters replaces Rahm Emanuel as White House chief of staff; and Lloyd Doggett is appointed to the next U.S. Supreme Court vacancy.  

8.   Democracy

Non-paper trail voting machines are banned and hand-countable paper ballots become the method of voting in all elections. 

9.   Equality and Freedom

To preserve and protect the equality of human freedom, Congress repeals the Defense of Marriage Act; and the legislature and voters of Texas repeal the "marriage" amendment of the Texas Constitution. 

10.   Constitution/Economy/Democracy

Either the Supreme Court overrules its erroneous 19th century decision that declared corporations to have the same constitutional rights as human beings, or Congress and the people reverse the decision through a Constitutional amendment that inserts the word "natural" before the word "person" in the Due Process clause of the 5th Amendment and the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the 14th Amendment.

11.   Economic/Jobs/Standard of Living

NAFTA and other "free trade" agreements are repealed and tax penalties are enacted that make it financially prohibitive for American companies to relocate to or maintain production in other countries.

12.   Economic/Usury

Usury laws are restored, making it illegal to charge interest over 10% in any transaction.

13.   Economic/Democracy

Strong new anti-consolidation laws are enacted to break up all the great concentrations of economic power in every industry. The financial services industry is reined in under these new laws and the huge banking, investment banking, financial services, and insurance conglomerates are broken up. The practices of credit rating and scoring are banned.  The new anti-consolidation laws are used to break up the corporate media empires.  Strengthened antitrust laws revitalize fair competition for honest business entrepreneurs.  With the breakup of the agribusiness conglomerates, fair competition and fair pricing are restored for the family farmer, resulting in more young people remaining in the essential business of farming. 

14.   The Rule of Law
The Wall Street criminals whose runaway greed created the financial crisis are brought to justice for their crimes.
15.  International Relations/Economy

As a nation America finally realizes that World War II and the Cold War are both over, and resolves to dismantle its vast and unaffordable network of overseas military installations and adventures. For starters, all United States military personnel are withdrawn from Iraq and Afghanistan. 

16.  Justice/Democracy/Checks and Balances

Because restoring balance in the appellate courts is essential if the courts of Texas are ever to return to the people, all Democratic challengers for Republican-held seats win the 2010 elections for positions on the Texas Supreme Court, Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, and Texas Courts of Appeal.

17.  Democracy/Transportation
All parts of the Trans-Texas Corridor and all other plans for toll roads in Texas are rescinded permanently. 
18.  Democracy

Public financing of election campaigns is instituted at all levels of government. 

19.  Checks and Balances

The Democratic Party remembers its roots as the party of the people in the tradition of Jefferson, Jackson, Roosevelt, Truman, Johnson, and Rayburn.

Thank you for your attention. What's on your list?
 
Sincerely,
 
David Van Os
Thank you for reading this issue of Notes from a Texas Patriot. If you deem it worthy of circulation please forward it to others. If this issue of Notes from a Texas Patriot was forwarded to you and you wish to receive future issues, please send an email to david@texas-patriot.com with"subscribe" in the subject line. If for any reason you do not wish to receive any more of Notes from a Texas Patriot, please send an email to david@texas-patriot.com with "unsubscribe" in the subject line. Also, any feedback you wish to offer is welcome. 
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David Van Os - Notes From a Texas Patriot | 158 Brees Boulevard | San Antonio | TX | 78209



--
    The past is never dead. It's not even past." William Faulkner
Visit my bloghttp://wwwlearn-past.blogspot.com/