Issues

What's Wrong With Roe v. Wade?

Even thirty years after this controversial decision, the jury is still out on Roe v. Wade.

Decided in the early 70's, I remember well when the case was decided, as I had just completed high school.

For many, it was one of those days embedded in your brain due to it's reach and "precedent," along the lines of the day Kennedy was assassinated. A monumental moment in history, and now even in the 21st Century, the controversy still reigns.

When the decision was reached, it turned our country quite upside down and polarized.

Interestingly, historians and others who bring Roe to the forefront in political discussions and discourse, and of course at election time, fail to also mention that at the time Roe was decided, the Pill and other rather reliable methods of birth control were becoming more and more available.

Planned Parenthood had just opened it's doors to "free birth control" during this "free love" era, and AIDS was nothing more than someone's assistant. At the time it was decided, there were many states which did allow early abortions, since this also was the time when the "globalists" had started their scares about overpopulation, and the destruction of our planet.

It is now, of course, being resurrected by many of those former hippies, and capitalists types as the new scheme in which to become a millionaire before 35.

Seems out in California there is now a blend of "hippie capitalists." They don't mind being that dirty word "capitalists" so long as they are making their fortunes along environmentally friendly lines, and saving the planet from overpopulation is one of them.

Many of these left wing pro-choice activists believe in unrestricted access to abortion, such as third trimester partial birth abortions, including from all accounts the Democratic nominee. The defense has been with respect to that Illinois bill a fear that in supporting the partial birth ban it might overturn Roe v. Wade, and was worded incorrectly.

My understanding is that was what the Committees in the state legislatures were for, writing and reviewing laws for Constitutionality prior to bringing them to the floor, and Roe actually only addressed and upheld the right to first term abortions since those were already allowed in most of the states, for rape, health of the mother, and had been expanded for teen pregnancies so long as there was parental consent.

Hey, it's for the good of the planet, and expands the "free market" for the abortion clinics in the process.

For all the scare tactics the libs like to throw out every election about the "threat" of Roe being overturned if, horror of horrors, a conservative should get into office and further stack the Supreme Court, I have just one thing to say.......don't you think it's about time that decision was reviewed, and in the 21st Century now?

At this point throughout the country, we now have even the "Morning After" pill, for heaven sakes. Birth control pills now in many areas of the country can be obtained by even teens without their parent's consent, and due to the AIDS and other STDs epidemic, the use of contraceptives between committed or uncommitted couples has never been higher.

Isn't it about time we pulled the plug, at least, on second and third trimester abortions nationwide, except in the event of health risk to the mother or child in continuing the pregnancy?

Just what are you liberals afraid of, that in so doing we will go back to the dark ages, where abortions were performed in dark alleys with unsterilized equipment, when now there is even a pill that can abort during the first trimester?

I believe abortion should be restricted to the first trimester at this point in our history, and not simply for moral reasons but legal ones.

This was never a "right to privacy" issue to begin with, it was always a "right to life" issue, since if the founder's were not concerned with "life" they certainly wouldn't have based an entire document in order to secure "life, liberty and happiness" for "us and our posterity" if they were unconcerned with just what the "Creator" would think.

And it's pretty clear there is 10 Commandment law behind that Constitution, whether the atheists in this country wish to believe it or not. Those rights referred to as unalienable are acknowledged as "endowed by the Creator."  A Creator they clearly acknowledged.

Religious tolerance is actually a Christian doctrine, it is not a Jewish, Muslim, Hindu or Buddhist doctrine, and the freedom of religion provision was also provided in order to prevent a NATION-WIDE or "State" religion, such as they had experienced in England with the decades long fighting between the Catholics and the Protestants.

 "Loving thy neighbor," and the story of the Good Samaritan are examples of the scriptural basis upon which the "freedom of religion" provisions were meant to flesh out in our "new" government which had been denied them in England under the Church of England's dominance during the 18th Century.

Read Ben Franklin's speech when the Constitution was ratified, and he specifically alludes to the problems they were attempting to avoid by recognizing each individuals right to worship God according to their own understanding, and in their own way, without "nationalizing" a state religion such as in Britain and the Church of England, and in more recent history, Israel.

It does seem the founder's knew what they were doing, since even today those countries with "national" religions do seem to be engaged in much more strife, both internal and external, than others.

The problem that I do have with the far, far right wing evangelical Christians is their rather rigid interpretation of when life begins, since Jesus never truly addressed it.

Most pastors and members of the evangelical churches relate to the biblical passage of God "knowing you in your mother's womb." The problem I have with that is that adultery was a criminal matter in Jesus's time, and the punishment under the 10 Commandment law at the time was death by stoning.

If life truly begins at conception rather than viability, then God allowed innocent fetuses to be killed along with their mothers since I'm sure a great many of those adulteresses were pregnant.

It is also biblically clear that the first life God created, Adam, he did so by "breathing" life into dust, and that in then creating Eve, he clearly then gave them, not he, the gift of procreation by directing them to "go forth and multiply."

And it's also pretty darn clear that he intended children to be raised in two sex households optimally, since he didn't give us the ability to recreate independently of the other sex.

What is truly amazing to me is that for all the bravado of the "pro-choice" movement and those mostly liberals who even today with medical knowledge and technology the way it is, still cling to this decision as a benchmark of a candidates worthiness.

It is interesting that while the radical liberal element protest over global warming and how it is affecting the whales, polar bears, and other Arctic creatures, they were nowhere to be seen when Teri Schiavo was judicially literally starved and dehydrated to death for almost 14 days while she clung to life, breathing on her own, before dehydration of her vital organs caused her body to literally feed upon itself until her execution. 

She was also a practicing Catholic, and nowhere in the court documents does it appear her civil rights, and individual religious beliefs were even given any consideration during that entire multi-year fight over the removal of her feeding and hydration tubes.

The most painful type of death any human can experience ending in progressive organ shutdown, and a judge in this country so ordered it.

Her "right to life" without clearly artificial life support in its termination by fiat was nothing more than judicially sanctioned murder.

Better watch out, liberals, since your definition of "pro-choice" and "freedom" sounds more like Germany, circa World War II.

The Future? Part 1 - Race Relations & Immigration

I have begun the difficult but exciting process of carefully thinking about what specific issues a new Republican party can run on in the future (planning for 2012, but we may be ready for 2010).

Steps for Success

Our problem is the party's race relations. For decades now Republicans (and even conservatives in general) have very successfully been labeled as racists and bigots. Yes, this is very largely because our opponents have driven this message to the public, but ultimately it is our fault for not working hard enough to selling ourselves and our accomplishments in this area.

  • This starts with our history as the party that ended slavery under President Lincoln, but continues right up to President George W. Bush's very racially diverse administration. We must build grassroots marketing campaigns to make sure the public (especially young people) know that the Republican party is the historical party of racial liberty and opportunity. These grassroots campaigns should start on popular Internet social networking sites and conservative blogs, but could eventually create multimedia advertisements to be picked up and distributed on broadcast stations by political organizations with money. We will receive much ridicule from the left at first, but if we stick to these campaigns we can at least get this out into the "public consciousness" so it isn't such a strange idea when 2012 comes around.
  • Reach out more to an ethnic population very often overlooked by both conservatives and liberals: Native Americans. With the power of charities and grassroots fundraising, we can take the message of self-reliance and hard work to the communities that are trapped in alcoholism and welfare. People may scoff at this, but it would go a long way not only to helping Native peoples, but also our reputation among the public. And assuming initial success we could expand the message to immigrating Hispanics, who oftentimes identify themselves with mixed Native heritage depending upon the region they come from.
  • And the hardest, but most important one: we have to take a long, hard look at our traditional stance on immigration. Does this mean accepting "Amnesty"? No. But it does mean being willing to come up with creative solutions to the problem and packaging those solutions in digestible ideas for sound bites and campaign slogans to persuade people. Below are ideas on how a Republican immigration plan can look and be marketed. The bottom line is that we have to be willing to bend a little on this issue and heavily market this in order to ever overcome our unfair reputation as the anti-immigration party.
  • We have to also work harder at digging up hard examples of how welfare and big government nanny-ism hurts immigrant families in the long run. Counter that with hard evidence of how entrepreneurship and learning English in these families leads to greater success. And when we have these examples and raw information, we need to package and market deep inside ethnic communities (Spanish-language television stations, newspapers, churches and other organizations).

Legislative Leadership

Assuming Senator John McCain decides to stay in office after this election, he would be a tremendous asset to this immigration campaign. He has championed borderline Amnesty immigration reform, but if we come up with solutions that are less strict than we traditionally have pushed, we could convince him to meet us half way. He has also been a huge advocate for Native Americans in his time in the Senate (which is something I am sad never was brought up during any of his stump speeches or television spots), and his reputation in this could lift up other Republican politicians that work with him (legislators or governors) and provide them a foundation to build on.

Are there any other Republican politicians that are working on immigration reform or relations within the Native American communities?

Possible Features

Some ideas for this future immigration reform, for your consideration to get discussion started:

  • Whatever programs for helping educating and integrating immigrants into America must come from charities and other private sources, not the federal government (although state governments would be free to partner with these programs, of course). The federal government may help co-ordinate these disparate organizations so that people in need of the services have a single website and phone number to get information from, but that is the extent of government involvement. We can start here by making a list of existing charities that are in this field already.
  • It may be necessary for some federal taxpayer money to be used to help these programs with their expanded administrative costs at first, but even if this is true any annual financing should have an automatic expiration date that fades away over a set number of years.
  • A combined guest worker and academic study program with a defined path to citizenship. Allow a certain number of people from all over the world to come to the U.S. for 2 year blocks of time to work or go to school. They would never be eligible for the welfare programs, so if they loose their job and can't find another one to buy food or health care, their guest permit is revoked. They must show some level of English, although wouldn't have to be fluent (that should come while they work or learn here). If they break any significant crime they would loose their guest permit (drunk driving would be enough, but a speeding citation may not).
  • The above guest worker/student program can be used to funnel all potential citizens into our country. Therefore, there would not be any hard line between foreigner one day then full-blown citizen the next. Everyone would come in to work or learn while proving to the government they can follow the laws and become fluent in English in order to attain full citizenship.
  • I do not think the guest worker/student program should cost the foreigner much money. It should be cheap and easy to become a "guest" for at least 2 years. Their presence in the country by paying taxes and being productive would be benefit enough to our economy. However, the costs for becoming a full citizen should pay for themselves through application fees. Even at most I don't expect that to be more than $2,000, and even that may be high.
  • Give all applicants in our current system that have been waiting more than 2 years a priority treatment to become guests as soon as possible, and waive their application fees to become citizens when they are ready (assuming they meet all qualifications).
  • To become a guest worker, the individual must apply through a U.S. Embassy in their native country (or an auxiliary office of the Embassy in large countries). There would not be any way to apply within the USA, therefore encouraging immigrants who are here in the U.S. illegally to return home first. We would allow them to leave in peace, and in fact may even set them up with charities or other programs to help them pay for the trip back. Once they properly apply, they may be given a priority treatment to become guests because of the prior experience with the U.S., but it would not be greater treatment than those immigrants who are grandfathered in from the old system.
  • And of course, securing the border is an absolute requirement. Leaving it open and unguarded is a huge national security risk as we all know. I believe we can successfully sell this to the public if our plans for legal guests and immigrants is seen as accepting and humanitarian enough. The only real questions are whether this secured border would be a physical wall (sorry, a "fence" isn't going to cut it), or a virtual one of cameras and UAVs patrols in the air. I'm leaning towards the virtual one. And also whether the National Guard would be involved by activation by the federal government on short term rotations (3 months would be best).

Consequences

If we fail to reclaim the label of racial liberators, then the Republican Party will fade away, faced with a Democrat Party constantly growing off of changing ethnic demographics all over the country. The two party Republican/Democrat dynamic would eventually be replaced by a split in the Democratic party between their far-left and left-of-center factions. Yes, the core conservative heart of the American public will live on, but an organization large and sufficiently funded enough will not be there to empower them.

A disclaimer: I am a conservative, but registered Libertarian, not Republican, although that may change in the future depending where the party goes.

Is the Leftosphere mainstream?

Next Right diarist Warner Todd Huston challenges the Kos claim that the Leftosphere is "firmly on the mainstream on just about every major issue facing our country".  Huston is skeptical.

I'm not so sure that Kos is wrong, though.  There are two evaluation problems here:

  • "Mainstream" does not necessarily mean "majority", so what is the popular support percentage required to make a position mainstream?   
  • Polls suggest that 70% of Americans support Issue X.  Other polls suggest that 70% of Americans oppose Issue X.  Polls show state preference - but they are a poor proxy for revealed preference.

Bearing those problems in mind, is Kos actually wrong?   I don't see it.  Among the top national issues today, polls show that...

  • Majorities prefer universal health care.
  • Majorities think oppose the war in Iraq and want to get out very soon.
  • Majorities believe anthropogenic global warming is occurring.

 I'm sure there are more granular and specific items on which positions are reversed and they are in the minority, as well.  But we're generally talking a sizable minority, not a small minority.   The public "trust" for Republicans has eroded even on core issues like taxes and foreign policy. 

All that to say, while their reputation as bitter partisans and bomb-throwers is well-deserved, I'm not sure that they are actually outside the mainstream of American politics.   And if that's true, then it is a reality we need to acknowledge and address. 

So, make the case.  Are Kos and the leaders of the Leftosphere outside the mainstream of Americans politics?   If so, on what general major issues are they outside the mainstream?

UPDATE

Sean Oxendine makes an interesting point in the comments:

[their reputation as bitter partisans and bomb-throwers is] why they are outside of the mainstream.  Sure you can point to support for many of their public policy platforms (though on things like FISA, impeachment, etc, I'm not sure that you can).  For that matter, I can point to support for many of the public policy platforms of the Communist Party or the Constitution Party.  That doesn't place those groups within the mainstream.  It's a stylistic difference and the degree to which they are willing to take otherwise-popular positions.

Style is also one of the major differences between the Progressive Netroots and the Democratic Party establishment.   The Progressives want what Matt Stoller once described as "someone who would be with you in a political bar fight."   They want a Fighting Progressive.   

I understand that desire, but I'm not sure how an assertive, aggressive liberal plays with a public that, while often operationally liberal, is still often philosophically conservative/libertarian.   When Democrats make the tangible costs of their policies so visible, the public is more likely to teach them the difference between stated preference and revealed preference.

John McCain and the "Agents of Intollerance"

It was eight years ago -- Februray 28, 2008, precisely -- when then Presidential candidate John McCain delivered a seering speech before a crowd of Virginia voters critical of some in the Republican establishment, and he named names. Then-candidate McCain faced a governor from Texas and son of a previous President, George W. Bush. The Republican nomination had not been decided and many in the religious right had decided their candidate was Bush.

Banishing the Huckabee Boogeyman

So now we know.... It will be Barack Obama and John McCain contending head to head in contest to be the president of these united states, and early polling seems to indicate that the vice presidential pick of each gentleman will have a significant influence on how each candidate fares in any number of swing states.

There is a chance, no one knows how great, or how small, that John McCain may decide that the former governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee, may be the person he needs on his ticket to give him the best chance at winning in the currently democratic friendly electoral environment.

There are many, many self described conservatives who have said this would be the last straw, that they would not vote for a McCain/Huckabee ticket. Much of this hostility is rooted in opinions formed of the man, out of the nuggets produced by opposition research in the primaries. Nuggets designed to paint Huckabee in the worst possible light.

Just as we have gone through the process of sifting through the partisan rhetoric to find the areas on which McCain and conservatives can agree, I believe that it is time to start making the case for acceptance of individuals who though not perfectly aligned with our multi-pronged philosophies, may perhaps find themselves on the ticket and in need of our support.

I do not limit this evaluation to Huckabee alone. I would love for someone to make Mitt's case as well, as it is foolish to believe that the entire conservative base is united behind the idea of Mitt for VP, especially in regards to the social conservative wing of the party.

I do not believe in reinventing the wheel. A fairly comprehensive summary of Mike Huckabee's governing philosophy and positions on the issues was written by Joe Carter, a member of his rapid response on line team during the campaign. I am not sure how significant its impact was at the time, but I would like to reintroduce it to the blogosphere for your consideration.

As with most politicians, some of Mike's positions have evolved or been refined over time. Some may define this as a 'flip' but I challenge you to find a 'flop.' Huckabee has never moved back and forth on the same subject multiple times. He has always delievered on his campaign promises and on his word in general. As a result, his supporters feel safe in believing that his current political platform does indeed represent who and what he would be about in the whitehouse, in any capacity.

Please attempt for a few minutes to lay your preconceptions to the side and 'discover' Mike Huckabee for the first time again. I am not asking you to decide if he is a 'conservative' by whatever definition you may use, but rather, to think about if someone with these governing philosophies would be a conservative influence on a president McCain, and ultimately, if a team of these two individuals is more acceptable than a Barack Obama administration.

The article is lengthy, but well worth the read. Thanks for your time, and please be polite in your commentary, even if you forcefully disagree. Here is the link to the original source:

http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com/archives/004182.html

For the past few months I've been defending Governor Mike Huckabee against an onslaught of attacks on his character, positions, and record. When I worked for the campaign I spent a significant portion of my time clearing up misconceptions for journalists and parrying dishonest accusations made by other campaigns. And here on this blog I've written numerous posts responding to the questions posed by bloggers and rebutting claims made by sundry interest groups.

Yet all this time I've failed to make a positive case for why I feel Governor Huckabee to be the most visionary and conservative candidate in the race. I naively assumed that everyone was seeing what I was seeing. Indeed, I'm embarrassed to admit that I failed to recognize that not everyone would have the same familiarity with his policy positions as his former Director of Research.

To rectify this situation I've compiled a list of his most significant policy positions on a range of issues--from tax reform to national security. While all of this information can be found online, I thought it would be useful to cut away the excess verbiage in order to provide as succinct a set of statements as possible. I've also included a prefatory section that explains Governor Huckabee's philosophy of governance.

Although this compilation is not exhaustive, I do believe that it provides a useful outline for anyone who wants to familiarize themselves on Huckabee's true positions on the issues.

Philosophy of Governance

Governor Mike Huckabee: "To me conservative governance means following the "original intent" of the Founding Fathers, it means recognizing that Jefferson won the debate with Hamilton, and that we want very strong, energetic, innovative states, with government both as limited as possible and as close to the people as possible. The states should not usurp functions that can be handled locally, and the federal government should not usurp functions that can be handled by the states. An important part of being a conservative President for me would be strengthening federalism. Conservative governance also means an emphasis on personal responsibility and letting the free market function unencumbered, so that Americans have tremendous opportunity, but not a guaranteed outcome. It means smaller, more efficient government; lower government spending; lower taxes. It means keeping the government out of our lives and letting families keep as much of the money they earn and make as many of their own decisions as possible. It means allowing younger workers to have personal Social Security accounts. It means getting entitlements under control.

I believe that our rights come from God, not from our government; that the people should retain as much power and be left alone as much as possible; that the federal government should not do what can be done at the local or state level; that our government belongs to the people, not the lobbyists and special interests; that government at all levels exists to serve the people and not the other way around; that we must respect the separation of powers and no branch should usurp the authority of another; that my greatest responsibility is to protect the American people from all threats; that the free market, low taxes, and minimal regulation are the keys to economic growth and prosperity; that Americans are owed equal opportunity, but not an equal outcome; that we are a culture of life and recognize that each individual has intrinsic value and worth; that we are only as strong as our families; that we owe a huge debt to those who have given their lives for this country to protect the freedoms and way of life for which they sacrificed.

I would weigh all of my decisions in the context of those principles to assure that I am doing the right thing and not the popular or expedient thing. I will always err on the side of protecting life, strengthening our families, and protecting our citizens and our country from possible threats to their safety."

(Response provided to the American Conservative Union)

Issues and Positions

Tax Reform

-Make all tuition for higher education tax-deductible

-Make health insurance tax deductible for individuals and families as it now is for businesses. (Low income families would get tax credits instead of deductions.)

-Preserve and expand President Bush’s tax cuts

-Eliminate the marriage penalty

-Cut taxes on savings

-Eliminate the Death Tax

-Reduce counterproductively high personal and corporate marginal tax rates.

-Encourage "baby boomers" who plan to work into their late 60’s or even beyond by giving them tax breaks, like additional exemptions or a “working senior” deduction.

-Long-term goal: implementation of the FairTax so that American workers keep their entire paycheck, American businesses can compete on a level-playing field with their foreign competitors, and so that we can brings jobs and investment that are currently parked off-shore back to the United States.

Economy

-Subprime mortgage crisis: begin a second round of negotiations with subprime lenders with an eye toward expansion of the “Hope Now” program.

-Cut burdensome red tape that drives up the cost of products and keeps employers from hiring more workers or raising wages.

-Reduce frivolous lawsuits which drive up costs of products and medical care.

-Institute free trade that is fair to America. We will expect our trading partners to live up to their obligations—everyone must play by fair rules.

-Open new markets for American products.

-Ensure the Federal Reserve adapts a pro-growth, low-inflation policy.

-Veto earmarks and unnecessary discretionary spending

Energy Independence

-Implement a national energy security policy which will end our dependence on Middle Eastern oil within ten years by conserving, exploring, and inventing our way to independence in energy.

-pursue all avenues of alternative energy: nuclear, wind, solar, hydrogen, clean coal, biodiesel, and biomass.

-Remove red tape that slows innovation, allow the free market to sort out what makes the most sense economically.

-Set aside a federal research and development budget that will be matched by the private sector to seek the best new products in alternative fuels.

Social Issues

-Support passage of a constitutional amendment to protect the right to life.

-Support passage of a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

-Oppose all embryo-destructive research.

-Veto any pro-abortion legislation, including federal funding for Planned Parenthood.

Education

-Make all tuition for higher education tax-deductible

-Support the rights of parents to home school their children

-Support states that want to create more charter schools or implement public school choice.

-Allow states to develop their own benchmarks.

-Work towards a clear distinction between the federal role in assisting and empowering states and in usurping the right of states to carry out the education programs for their students

Healthcare

-Advocate policies that will encourage the private sector to seek innovative ways to bring down costs and improve the free market for health care services.

-Reform medical liability

-Support the adoption of electronic record keeping

-Make health insurance more portable from one job to another

-Expand health savings accounts to include all Americans.

-Making health insurance tax deductible for individuals and families as it now is for businesses. (Low income families would get tax credits instead of deductions.)

-Encourage the states' role as laboratories for new market-based approaches.

Immigration

-Ensure that an interlocking surveillance camera system is installed along the border by July 1, 2010.

-Ensure that the border fence construction is completed by July 1, 2010.

-Increase the number of border patrol agents.

-Fully support all law enforcement personnel tasked with enforcing immigration law.

-Policies that promote or tolerate amnesty will be rejected.

-Propose to provide all illegal immigrants a 120-day window to register with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services and leave the country. Those who register and return to their home country will face no penalty if they later apply to immigrate or visit; those who do not return home will be, when caught, barred from future reentry for a period of 10 years.

-This is not a "touchback" provision. Those who leave this country and apply to return from their home country would go to the back of the line.

-Employment is the chief draw for most illegal immigrants and denying them jobs is the centerpiece of an attrition strategy.

-Impose steep fines and penalties on employers that violate the law.

-Institute a universal, mandatory citizenship verification system as part of the normal hiring process.

-Prevent the IRS and the Social Security Administration from accepting fraudulent Social Security numbers or numbers that don't match the employees' names.

-Promote better cooperation on enforcement by supporting legislative measures such as the CLEAR Act, which aims to systematize the relationship between local law and federal immigration officials.

-Encourage immigration-law training for police. Local authorities must be provided the tools, training, and funding they need so local police can turn illegal immigrants over to the federal authorities.

-End exemptions for Mexicans and Canadians to the US-VISIT program, which tracks the arrival and departure of foreign visitors. Since these countries account for the vast majority of foreigners coming here (85 percent), such a policy clearly violates Congress' intent in mandating this check-in/check-out system.

-Reject Mexico's "matricula consular" card, which functions as an illegal-immigrant identification card.

-Inform foreign governments when their former citizens become naturalized U.S. citizens.

-Impose civil and/or criminal penalties on American citizens who illegitimately use their dual status (e.g., using a foreign passport, voting in elections in both a foreign country and the U.S.).

-Eliminate the visa lottery system and the admission category for adult brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens.

-Increase visas for highly-skilled and highly-educated applicants.

-Expedite processing for those who serve honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces.

-Improve our immigration process so that those patiently and responsibly seeking to come here legally will not have to wait decades to share in the American dream.

Judges

-Huckabee's judicial philosophy: "I believes that the Constitution must be interpreted according to its original meaning, and flatly reject the notion of a "living Constitution." The meaning of the Constitution cannot be changed by judicial fiat. The powers delegated to the federal government by the Constitution come from "We the People," and judges have no right to prohibit the people from passing democratically-enacted laws unless we have explicitly authorized them to do so. Nor can vaguely-worded language in the Constitution be used by judges to give them power over subjects the framers never intended our founding document to address. As such, any interpretation of the Constitution that is based on "evolving standards of decency," penumbras, or any other judicial fiction, is antithetical to the rule of law, and must be forcefully challenged."

-Appoint justices and judges who not only share his judicial philosophy (e.g., Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Antonin Scalia, Justice Clarence Thomas, and Justice Samuel Alito), but who also have established themselves within the conservative legal community as faithful adherents of originalism and textualism.

Social Security

-Allow younger workers the option of personal accounts.

-Allow letting people take the money in their account at retirement and buy an annuity.

-Encourage "baby boomers" who plan to work into their late 60’s or even beyond by giving them tax breaks, like additional exemptions or a “working senior” deduction.

-Since some retirees don’t need their Social Security to retire comfortably, offer them the option of a tax-free lump sum for their children or grandchildren to get when they die, which would delay some payments for decades.

National Sovereignty

-Oppose the Law of the Sea Treaty.

-Oppose the U. N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.

-Oppose the North American Union,.

-Oppose the Kyoto Treaty.

Veteran's Affairs
Veterans will be provided the following "Bill of Rights":

-The right to a mandatory rather than a discretionary mechanism for funding veterans' health care, to eliminate year-to-year uncertainty that the funds they need will be there for them

-The right to obtain full and clear explanation of all benefits and comprehensive assistance in obtaining those benefits.

-The right to have a claim processed within six months.

-The right to the fullest possible accounting of the fate of POW/MIAs and the right to be designated as POW/MIA.

-The right to access state-of-the-art treatment facilities for traumatic brain injuries.

-The right of National Guard and Reserve personnel called to active service to receive the same benefits as active duty veterans.

-The right of disabled veterans to receive both their military retirement and VA compensation.

-The right of wounded Reserve troops to be treated like their active duty counterparts until their claims have been processed.

-The right of wounded veterans and those who have served in combat theaters to a comprehensive GI bill that provides full tuition, books, fees, and living expenses at any institution to which the veteran is accepted.

National Security

-Increase defense spending to six percent of GDP.

-Build new planes, new armed vehicles, new robotic land and air vehicles, new ships all right here in America.

-Recruit and train thousands of new troops and bring our National Guard and Reserves back home. We must increase the size of the U.S. Army and the Marine Corps by about 92,000 troops within two to three years without lowering enlistment standards.

-Improve the nation's aging infrastructure (roads, bridges, water systems, sewer systems, etc.).

-Active-duty forces should not be used for nation building. We must return to our policy of using other government agencies to build schools, hospitals, roads, sewage treatment plants, water filtration systems, electrical facilities, and legal and banking systems.

-If we are required to undertake a large invasion we must use overwhelming force.

-[The GWOT] -- The Commander-in-Chief has an obligation to clearly communicate to the American people the nature of the war we are fighting, especially the goal of the jihadists: to kill every last one of us, destroy civilization as we know it, and to establish a theocratic caliphate without national borders.

-[The GWOT] -- The United States' biggest challenge in the Arab and Muslim worlds is the lack of a viable moderate alternative to radicalism. Although we cannot export democracy we should nurture moderate forces that present an alternative to the jihadists.

-[The GWOT] -- The goal in the Arab and Muslim worlds will be to calibrate a course between maintaining stability and promoting democracy. We must not act too hastily but we must act. Specifically, we can help by aiding or promoting basic sanitation, health care, education, jobs, a free press, and fair court systems within these areas.

-[The GWOT] -- We must reduce our dependence on foreign oil if we are going to defeat jihadism.

-[The GWOT] -- We must strengthen both our human intelligence resources and our military assets in order to eliminate the current threat.

-[Iraq] -- We should not withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq any faster than General David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander there, recommends. Troops must be brought home based on the conditions on the ground, not on artificial timetables.

-[The Kurds] -- We must encourage Turkey to continue to improve life for its Kurds, and we must encourage the Turkish Kurds to address their grievances through the political process, including through the 20 deputies currently representing them in parliament.

-[The Kurds] -- We should be willing to provide the Turks with actionable intelligence to go after the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) with limited air strikes and commando raids. A even better method would be to train and equip Iraqi Kurds to fight the PKK and rid themselves of this menace.

-[Iran] -- The military option for dealing with Iran should not be taken off the table.

-[Iran] -- Iran is a nation that has to be contained, just as the Soviet Union was during the Cold War. In order to contain Iran, it is essential to win in Iraq. We cannot allow Iran to push its theocracy into Iraq and then expand it further west.

-[Iran] -- We must be as aggressive diplomatically as we have been militarily since 9/11. We must intensify our diplomatic efforts with China, India, Russia, South Korea, and European states and persuade them to put more economic pressure on Iran.

-[Iran] -- Despite the protestations of Congressional Democrats, we should support and continue President Bush's new sanctions against Iran, his decision to designate Iran's Revolutionary Guards as a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction, and the classifications of al Quds force as a supporter of terrorism. We must also encourage our state and private pension funds to divest themselves of Iran-related assets.

-[Iran] -- Despite the protestations of Russia, we should move forward with the current plan to set up ten missile interceptors in Poland and a radar system in the Czech Republic to protect Europe from Iranian missiles.

-[Iran] -- We should reestablish diplomatic relations with Iran but only after the Iranians have made concessions that serve to create a less hostile relationship.

-[Iran] -- Iran must not be allowed to acquire nuclear weapons. However, a range of incentives (e.g., trade and economic assistance, full diplomatic relations, and security guarantees) should be offered before moving forward with military action. Before we put our troops at risk in Iran, we should exhaust all diplomatic and economic options.

-[Pakistan] -- On September 12, 2001, Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf agreed to sever his relationship with the Taliban and let us fight al Qaeda inside Pakistan. But distracted by Iraq, we have since allowed him to go back on his word. We should pressure him to remain firm in his commitment to us.

-[Pakistan] -- Because the next attack on the U.S. will have been planned in Pakistan, we must go after al Qaeda's safe havens in that country. The threat of an attack on us is far graver than the risk that a quick and limited strike against al Qaeda would bring extremists to power in Pakistan.

-[Pakistan] -- Musharraf has spent far more energy and enthusiasm sidelining the moderate Pakistani forces (like former Prime Ministers Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif) than he has in going after religious extremists and terrorists. We must have a "Pakistan policy" rather than just a "Musharraf policy."

-[Pakistan] -- We must use our friendly ties with India to encourage and help it improve its relationship with Pakistan and to push for increased trade and cooperation between the two countries, all to bring greater stability to the South Asian region.

 

Let us have another train wreck!

We have a couple or three train wrecks facing us; Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid and possibly the prescription drug benefit.

So, while we are at it lets add Universal Health Care to the train wreck list. 

Does anyone really believe that "we can afford it", "we can make up the cost by getting waste and fraud out of the system"?  No, I thought not.

With two train wrecks for sure the candidates have devoted so much to the solutions!  Right?  Wrong.  I don't think I have heard a peep from the candidates on how to fix these disasters!

Nope, just add another!

I have thought about this and have come up with an idea.  Instead of establishing the entitlement, we decide "How much money will be spent this year on _______ .  When the money runs out the service is suspended.  If every legislation had a $ limit I think they would be a little more careful about the service provided.

 

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