Law and Order vs. Anarchy

They are not Illegal… but their actions are.

Unless you have been living off-grid in Antarctica for the last few years, it is safe to say you have heard about the immigration problems we are facing in this country. Now, for the sake of dialogue, I will take a neutral, middle-of-the-road perspective. Meaning, let us take all of the “build a wall” and “open borders” rhetoric and put it in our back pockets until we go into the streets to protest or flood social media with virtue-signaling memes. Bottom line, we need to look at this from a pure law-and-order point of reference.

8 U.S. Code Chapter 12 – Immigration and Nationality[1] details the laws of the land with regard to immigration; the last time I checked, Congress, not the President through executive fiat, creates bills that the President signs into law. Executive Orders notwithstanding, Congress makes the laws by which we live. Stay with me for a moment. Now, there are 535 voting members of Congress (435 Representatives and 100 Senators)[2], they represent the views and opinions of their respective constituents. What this means is that our laws, statistically speaking, reflect the will of the people as represented by the folks they voted into office – so long as they are constitutional. Currently, both the Executive and Legislative branches of government are Republican, which means they are currently leaning towards the right (conservative) versus left (progressive). Conservatism does not equate to Naziism, Fascism, or any other type of oligarchical “-ism”. It simply means our values are rooted in the constitution and the founding principles of our nation. The is key to understanding my argument.

So why is this important to understand and what does it have to do with immigration? Over the last year, there has been a great deal of political bruhaha concerning “illegal immigrants”, specifically the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)[3] program. Essentially, this is program wherein illegal immigrants can petition the government for U.S. Citizenship if they can prove they were brought here as a child, against their own volition, and have been actively contributing to the betterment of our society. It sounds reasonable, so why has this become such a politically polarized issue? There are two main reasons. Progressive Democrats sincerely believe “No Human Being is Illegal[4]”, and they also believe in quasi human-gerrymandering as it pertains to bolstering the demographics of their political constituency. In a nutshell, Progressive Democrats believe they can gain more power by manipulating the playing field with non-US Citizen voters. Plain and simple.

They accomplish this through an emotional appeal to the human spirit wherein they use highly euphemistic politically correct language to refer to illegal immigrants as “dreamers.” When we remove all emotional language from the verbiage, we are left with two words from which we can establish a fundamental basis for an argument: 1). Illegal, and 2). Immigrant.

  1. Illegal[5]: contrary to or forbidden by law; and
  2. Immigrant[6]: a person who comes to live permanently in a foreign country.

By definition alone, as taken from the Merriam-Webster dictionary, an illegal immigrant is a person who comes “illegally” to live permanently in a foreign country, such as the United States. Every country on the planet has strict rules as it relates to immigrants entering into their countries and becoming citizens. In fact, there are some countries that do not allow foreigners to become citizens, or they at least make it extremely difficult to be granted citizenship[7]. What this means, every sovereign nation has laws that delineate the process for emigrating from another country and “legally” immigrating into their respective “sovereign country”. I understand the “open borders” arguments wherein Progressive Democrats believe there should be no borders in the world and we should all live under the collective rule of a “One-World Government[8]”; however, even in that kind of communistic (read dystopian) global society, there would still be laws, statutes, rules, regulations, and procedures that would prevent complete and total anarchy, and there would still be classifications/categorizations of peoples in order to track human movement. In furtherance, one could argue that the mythical open borders dream would, in fact, be more restrictive in nature, or would simply fail once people begin to lose their national identities[9].

So now that we understand the actual definition of “illegal immigrant” and why it is important to have “laws” that prevent complete and utter anarchy, we can now discuss DACA.

While the merits of the DACA program can be argued in either direction, I am not interested in emotionally any appeal from the “left or the right”; I simply care about the current law and protecting the fundamental, constitutional architecture laid out by our founding fathers. Without their wisdom and foresight, we probably wouldn’t even be able to have this argument because we would probably be living under the control of a despotic regime that prohibits free speech and political discourse. Let that sink in for a minute. We enjoy our rights to complain about everything and petition for grievances under the law, yet the Progressive Left is continually trying to nullify the law in order to fit its political agenda. It is an obvious paradox of magnanimous self-contradictions to claim protection under the very constitution they are trying to usurp or nullify through the use of “social justice” snowflakes (*see ANTIFA[10]).

The point is, we are a nation of laws; ergo, non-U.S. citizens must apply for citizenship in accordance with our laws. There is nothing more to argue at this point. In furtherance, President Trump, nor any Congressman, has waffled on this issue as far as I am concerned. President Trump simply stated that Barack Obama’s rule by executive fiat[11] (2014 Executive Actions on Immigration[12]) was not within the “constitutional authority” of the Executive Branch and that Congress (the Legislative Branch) needed to pass legislation he could sign. I simply can see no viable argument, legal or emotional, to challenge the constitution or checks-and-balances structure of our government, in this regard.

Now, as a human being I can definitely understand the emotional appeal to not separate families, or send people back to a country with which they have no cultural or language ties, but that is an emotional argument. And, it is one with which I can empathize. Yes, empathize, not sympathize. Why? Because while serving my country in the military, I had to get visas for a myriad of countries in which I “worked” or “lived”. I understood the immigration laws and expectations of those nations, and I fully understood the consequences of violating those laws. So why should the United States be any different? If a law is broken, especially by a non-U.S. person, the individual should be subject to all punitive actions/measures within the confines of that specific law. When it comes to immigration, they should be deported back to their country of origin. This happens in other countries, so why can’t we enforce our own laws?

But that is not really the argument. The argument is what to do with minors born as U.S. citizens to immigrants who entered this country illegally, or minors that entered into this country illegally, with their parents, against their own volition. To that, I can simply revert back to my statement, “we are a nation of laws”, “the individual(s) should be subject to all punitive actions/measures within the confines of that specific law.” So, while I can agree, “no human being is illegal”, that does not negate the fact that their actions can be illegal, and they should be held accountable under the law.

However, I do see merit in offering, on a limited and case-by-case basis, an opportunity to have a pathway to obtain U.S. Citizenship. Of course, my support comes with stipulations.

  1. The individual must not have a criminal record of any kind;
  2. The individual must not have prior deportations;
  3. The individual must pay a fine for breaking the law;
  4. The individual must submit retrograded tax forms for the previous five (5) years and pay all back taxes owed;
  5. The individual must enter into military service, civil service, or conduct a minimum of 1500 hours of community service over a five-year period.

So how would this solve the problem with illegal immigrant minors? Easy, the aforementioned stipulations apply to the parents of the minors. As the minors came here against their own volition, the parents should be subject to the punitive actions/measures outlined above. If the parents cannot, or will not, adhere to these stipulations, then my humanity ends there. Follow the law, and deport them back to their countries of origin. There is no argument to be had.

But, that is not for the average citizen to decide; it is not even for the President to decide, immigration law is the responsibility of Congress, and they, as dully representatives of their constituents, bear the sole responsibility of fixing this problem. President Trump made a wise decision to operate within his Constitutional authority and not operate through executive fiat like former U.S. Presidents[13].

As for whether or not a person can be, “illegal”. No, they cannot. But when they break the law, no matter how minor or slight, they have committed a crime, which makes them a criminal in the eyes of the court. We are not saying “illegal immigrants” do not have the same inalienable rights as everyone else, we are simply saying that the U.S. Constitution applies to U.S. Citizens, so, if an immigrant does not have the proper documentation to be in this country, the U.S. Constitution does not apply to them. They need to return to their country and institute constitutional changes within their own government. Or, if that is too difficult, they can at least apply for U.S. Citizenship just like every other law-abiding immigrant. But they cannot break into our country and expect not to be treated like a criminal that broke the law. If that is the case, it would set a slippery slope in terms of precedence with regard to other criminals not wanting to be held accountable for breaking other U.S. laws, codes, or statutes.

I will end this with two salient points. 1). Congress, you have been weighed and measured, and you have been found wanting. Please do the job for which you were elected. 2). For all of the fair-weather MAGA supporters out there, we need “winter soldiers”, not “sunshine patriots”. Either support the rule of law or get out of the way for the constitutional conservatives that do not want to live under the reign of an oligarchical plutocracy.

For all that know me, I love my country and I am generally very understanding from a classic liberal perspective when it comes to any issue, which is why I understand the need for law-and-order if we are to maintain a society – and hopefully our national identity as well. Bottom line, if we cannot enforce the laws of our nation, then what is the point of being a free people or even having sovereignty for that matter?

 


[1] 8 U.S. Code Chapter 12 – IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/8/chapter-12

[2] United States Congress. (2017, September 12). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Congress

[3] Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.uscis.gov/archive/consideration-deferred-action-childhood-arrivals-daca

[4] Haque-Hausrath, S. (n.d.). No Human Being is Illegal. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from http://nohumanbeingisillegal.com/Home.html

[5] Illegal. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/illegal

[6] Immigrant. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/immigrant

[7] Countries that Do Not Allow Citizenship. (n.d.) Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.quora.com/Are-there-countries-that-do-not-allow-any-foreigners-to-apply-for-a-citizenship

[8] One world government. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/One_world_government

[9] Hanson, V. D. (2016, July 31). Why borders matter — and a borderless world is a fantasy. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-hanson-borders-20160731-snap-story.html

[10] Beinart, P. (2017, August 06). The Rise of the Violent Left. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/the-rise-of-the-violent-left/534192/

[11] Masters, J. (2016, June 23). The U.S. Supreme Court and Obama’s Immigration Actions. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/us-supreme-court-and-obamas-immigration-actions

[12] 2014 Executive Actions on Immigration. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from https://www.uscis.gov/archive/2014-executive-actions-immigration

[13] Slattery, E. (2014, February 12). An Executive Unbound: The Obama Administration’s Unilateral Actions. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from http://www.heritage.org/the-constitution/report/executive-unbound-the-obama-administrations-unilateral-actions


 

Free Speech is Under Attack

Free Speech is not free if it can be censored.

There is a lot of talk about introducing “hate crime” legislation with regard “acceptable” language on college campuses in America. Obviously, we’ve all seen the news regarding Courtney Lawton and her temper tantrum fit at UNL, but do we really want to jeopardize the 1st Amendment by starting to define what constitutes acceptable free speech? Is that a Pandora’s Box we’re willing to open for the perceived illusion of a “safe space”, which incidentally does not exist in the real world.

For rational adults, when it comes to someone voicing an opinion opposite of our own, it is quite simple. We listen or don’t listen. We comment or don’t comment. However, we respect the free speech of others. Their language may contain defamatory and explicit remarks, but who has the right to say what is morally acceptable language and what is not? Our founders understood that “inalienable rights” were granted by our creator and could not be subject to the restrictions of man. So why now, all of the sudden, do we want to limit the rights to free speech just because it doesn’t align with differing perspectives or hurts someone’s delicate feelings?

You see, in America – the land of the free and home of the brave, as it were, we hold dearly that Freedom of speech is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, and it is our right to communicate our opinions and ideas to anyone, regardless of polarized differences. However, progressives try to restrict free speech by limiting it from: libel, slander, obscenity, sedition, hate speech, incitement, fighting words, right to privacy, public security, public order, public nuisance, and any other restrictive form they feel deracinates the institutional control they have infesting the natural order of human interaction. These limitations harm the principles of FREE SPEECH and we SHOULD NOT SUBSCRIBE to any actions that restrict a soul’s right to be heard – whether popular or unpopular, scorned or revered, everyone has the right to express the deepest and most heartfelt level of discourse that can be found in their souls – even if their souls are black and twisted.

The government has adopted the “offense principle” to expand the range of free speech and to prohibit forms of expression wherein they are considered offensive to society, special interest groups or individuals vis-à-vis religious offense, incitement to ethnic or racial groups, and any party claiming abuse, harm, or damage by the free words of others. IN ORDER TO PRESERVE OUR PRECIOUS INALIENABLE RIGHTS, WE CANNOT ACCEPT THESE LIMITATIONS, NO MATTER HOW MANY PEOPLE RECOIL OR FEEL OFFENDED.

You see, Universal law dictates that everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference and that everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice.

But, if I have to explain any of the aforementioned principles or patriotic subscriptions against the hindrance of liberty, then you are already too blind and cannot be saved; please move to North Korea because that form of tyranny better aligns with your values.

For the rest of America that hasn’t forgotten our fundamental principles, we negate and nullify any attempts to restrict our God-given rights defined within the document that formed our great nation and society… you know, the constitution!

 

 


http://redalertpolitics.com/2017/09/07/banning-not-acceptable-speech-rep-brown-introduce-campus-hate-crimes-act/

http://www.omaha.com/news/education/unl-lecturer-removed-from-classroom-duties-after-confrontation-with-conservative/article_2e9bea62-93e4-11e7-8073-5f3b55c4220d.html

Oligarchs and Sycophants

We the People, Still Matter

I am a US Navy Veteran with six tours to Afghanistan under his belt (1997-2007). I love God, my family, my country, my constitution, and my individual liberty – I am neither morally flexible nor willing to compromise on things I love.

In 2007, when I left active duty and settled down in Nebraska to be with my wife who was stationed at Offutt AFB, I started to become worried about the rise of absolute progressivism throughout the country, but I felt as if the Heartland was immune because of its constant allure of Americana.  However, by 2012, I knew that no one was safe from the constitutional apostasy and radical ideologies of the progressives, so I started to become politically involved.

Up front, I am an independent and constitutional conservative, which means I hold all political leaders accountable regardless of their political affiliation. If a political leader is grounded in the constitution, I will take no issue with their governance; however, if they usurp the constitution and the principles on which our nation was founded, I will find every occasion to publically scorn them.

Generally, I cover points and principles of the constitution and the correspondences between our founding fathers, and I explain the similarities between their struggles and our own at present time. Today, however, I want to include a little more substance given the literal deluge of scandals pouring out of the Democratic Party[1]. Remember, the Democrats gave us slavery, Jim Crow laws, and the impoverishment of minority urbanites through programs like Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and other socialist welfare programs. I mean, if you want to enslave a people, give them free money and services so long as they stay at or below the poverty level, and then you can maintain control with threats to remove the crutch that is actually impoverishing them. This is the maxim of progressive Democrats like Hillary Clinton and other politicians of the same ilk.

The game is up. We have let morally-bankrupt corporations rape our planet of its natural resources, pollute our environment, rob us of our money, and control the very people we put in office to represent us – you know, the “D.C. Swamp”, as it were. Our response? Blind apathy. Our penance, a soon to be dystopian society of magnanimous proportions so far beyond our comprehension that to speak of the impending doom simply gets you labeled as an “Orwellian, neo-con nut-job”.

We sit back in apathy and play with our cheap, distracting technology as our government forces oppression down our throats that is disguised as “modified” freedom. The main corrupt politicians, operating within the fractured central-government of this great nation, have no regard for the people from which they have derived their just powers (which is solely from the consent of the governed who have put them in office), and as they have seemingly become destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to affect their Safety and Happiness. Any of this sound familiar?

I continue…

Having suffered a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce us under absolute despotism, it is our right, it is our duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new guards for our future security.

You see, I am part of a small, marginalized group of constitutional conservatives that are not blinded by all usurpations teeming from the crock-pot that has become the Washington DC political apparatus. I could give a laundry list of reasons how our government has failed us, but drink in this fun fact. There are myriad of reasons for our declaration of independence; however, in the words of Benjamin Franklin, “The refusal of King George III to allow the colonies to operate an honest money system, which freed the ordinary man from the clutches of the money manipulators, was probably the prime cause of the revolution.”

The crux of our current economic plight is very similar to that of our founding fathers, wherein our “central authority” refuses to produce its own interest-free currency, and forces Americans to borrow money from a private, central banking system (the Federal Reserve), thus hurling our great nation into a perpetual state of debt from whence there is no recovery or respite. Moreover, this system, which is controlled by elite plutocrats, has corrupted a majority of Republican and Democratic leaders alike – so I say, “a plague on both your houses.”

“We the people”, for no apparent reason, allow 535 elected officials to continue to draft legislation that is detrimental to the livelihood of hard-working Americans, which also stands to bankrupt our future and push us further towards complete socialism and economic impoverishment.

OUR FOREFATHERS DID NOT WANT A MONARCHY ON AMERICAN SOIL, SO WHY ARE WE ALLOWING OUR FREEDOMS TO BE SWINDLED BY A HANDFUL OF CRIMINALS WHO ARE WOULD BE MONARCHISTS?

If our elected officials refuse to acknowledge the will of the people, then it is the will of the people that will soon refuse to acknowledge its central government’s authority to rule. Serving America is a privilege, not a means to make money and serve lobbyists from special interest groups or multi-national corporations that rape, pillage, and plunder our rights to life – liberty – and the pursuit of happiness. So “what happened” Hilary Clinton? Ma’am, you happened. Americans have grown tired of the condescending lordship of career politicians, and they can no longer stomach the vilification by leftist progressives who reject the principles and moral behavior that made this country the greatest nation history has ever know. So, no “madam president”, you lost because good, hard-working Americans are tired of the blatant corruption by oligarchs, like yourself, who are served by an entourage of sycophantic and obsequious politicians like Brad Ashford. We’ve all heard, “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree”, but in politics… the sycophants don’t stray far from the oligarchs. We’ve all seen just how corrupt the Clinton machine can be, so what does that say about their political cronies suckling at the power teet? Either they are ignorant or apathetic, but in either case, neither of the choices are characteristics of a good leader. But, I digress…

Baffling and absurd, these are the two words that incessantly reverberate in my mind as I watch my fellow countrymen offer up their freedom and liberties for the illusion of security. Our founding fathers committed high treason so that we might be free, but in just over two centuries, we have besmirched that gift and embraced the very type of tyranny they fought to end. Is it not our dutiful obligation to remove from power any government that has become destructive to its own end? This Washington-based government now sits in a position of absolute authority; any act of defiance against the reign of its plutocratic body is labeled as “rightwing or leftwing” extremism. In essence, the very same patriotic acts our forefathers executed while laying the foundation of our nation and a government – of the people, for the people, and by the people – is held in the same regard as the acts of Osama Bin Laden and Al Qa’eda. This new ruling class of plutocrats aims to deracinate the fabric of our society and crush our lives with insurmountable debt and complete, unquestionable allegiance to their metaphorical crown.

I say it is about time we end the reign of these absolutists and take back our nation. I say we can no longer sit in apathy and watch our ideals and liberties be trampled upon by those whom we have entrusted to preserve our birthright of true, unadulterated freedom. We, as a collective body of patriotic heretics much like our founding fathers, must unite and defy the career politicians in the Washington-based government, and we must not let the fear of tyrannical recourse outweigh the need for a radical change in this country. We must fight with the same moral arguments our founding fathers used, and we must rebuild a nation in which everyone contributes equally to the betterment of the union rather than feeding off the hard work of others like a parasitic plague. We must fight so that the future of our nation does not continue to be outsourced and sold to other nations for the sake of corporate campaign funding under this the pandemic plague known as career politicians. We must fight to retrieve and preserve the rights our ruling class has stolen from us. And when I say fight, I am not talking about violence of any kind. I am talking about holding our elected officials accountable, and, at the very least, shaming them into doing a better job for their constituents.

The meaning behind the words “we the people” have been lost in a sea of complacent apathy. We are the protectors of freedom in the military, we are the preservers of justice in the police force, we are the farmers that feed the whole, we are the merchants who provide commerce, WE ARE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, and WE are tired of this trodden state of existence. We the people will never give blind allegiance to career politicians that try to destroy our nation and framework of liberty. We the people choose to ignore the authority of absolutists we did not put into power.

In all of this, which is in plain sight everywhere I look, the plutocratic oligarchy of Washington DC has the audacity to label me a “domestic terrorist[2]”. Why, because I fought for 6-years in Afghanistan to come home to see our liberties stripped away, our economy in shambles, and the citizens I fought to protect in dire need of metaphorical Robin Hood? If I am a terrorist for using harsh language against the politicians in our failing government, then so be it! My morals, ethics, values, and pursuit of happiness are not dictated by the criminals who seek to ruin the nation and constitution I fought to serve and protect. If you have to petition, apply for approval, or get permission to exercise a right, regardless of which right that may be, then is not a right… it is a privilege that is given at the discretion of someone else and it can be taken away just as fast as it is given. So pay attention Brad Ashford… you just may learn a thing or two.

On November 20, 1772, Samuel Adams drafted Correspondence entitled “The Rights of the Colonists”. I will keep this as close to the original as possible, but I will substitute words like “colonists and crown” for words like “citizens and government”.

Among the natural rights of citizens are these: First, a right to life; Secondly, to liberty; Thirdly, to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can. These are evident branches of, rather than deductions from, the duty of self-preservation, commonly called the first law of nature. All men have a right to remain in a state of nature as long as they please; and in case of intolerable oppression, whether civil or religious, to leave the society they belong to, and enter into another. When men enter into society, it is by voluntary consent; and they have a right to demand and insist upon the performance of such conditions and previous limitations as form an equitable original compact.

The point here is that you choose to coexist with other human beings in a society, but you DO NOT GIVE UP YOUR NATURAL RIGHTS – ESPECIALLY NOT TO A CENTRAL GOVERNMENT!

Every natural right not expressly given up, or, from the nature of a social compact, necessarily ceded, remains. [You keep your rights unless YOU EXPRESSLY GIVE THEM UP.] All positive and civil laws should conform, as far as possible, to the law of natural reason and equity. The natural liberty of man, by entering into society, is abridged or restrained, so far only as is necessary for the great end of society, the best good of the whole. In the state of nature every man is, under God, judge and sole judge of his own rights and of the injuries done him. By entering into society, he agrees to an arbiter or indifferent judge between him and his neighbors; but he no more renounces his original right than by taking a cause out of the ordinary course of law, and leaving the decision to referees or indifferent arbitrators. [YOU HAVE YOUR RIGHTS; THEY CAN ONLY BE GIVEN AWAY BY YOU!] The natural liberty of man is to be free from any superior power on earth, and not to be under the will or legislative authority of man, but only to have the law of nature for his rule. In short, it is the greatest absurdity to suppose it in the power of one, or any number of men, at the entering into society, to renounce their essential natural rights, or the means of preserving those rights; when the grand end of civil government, from the very nature of its institution, is for the support, protection, and defence of those very rights; the principal of which, as is before observed, are Life, Liberty, and Property. If men, through fear, fraud, or mistake, should in terms renounce or give up any essential natural right, the eternal law of reason and the grand end of society would absolutely vacate such renunciation. The right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty, it is not in the power of man to alienate this gift and voluntarily become a slave.

Meaning, even if the government tricks you into giving up your rights; only God can take them away, so it doesn’t matter what “laws” a government makes to strip you of your rights, it still cannot take them away. Now, they can trick you into thinking they have the power “by law” to strip you of your rights, but that is the beautiful thing about natural rights. You are born with them and you shall die with them; NO MAN or GOVERNMENT OF MEN can take them away.

A commonwealth or state is a body politic, or civil society of men, united together to promote their mutual safety and prosperity by means of their union. The absolute rights of all freemen, in or out of civil society, are principally: personal security, personal liberty, and private property. All persons are, by the laws of God and nature, well entitled to all natural, essential, inherent, and inseparable rights, liberties, and privileges. Among those rights are the following, which no man, or body of men, consistently with their own rights as men and citizens, or members of society, can for themselves give up or take away from others.

First, “The first fundamental, positive law of all common wealths or states is the establishing the legislative power. As the first fundamental natural law, also, which is to govern even the legislative power itself, is the preservation of the society.” A governing body is established to preserve and protect a society – arbitrate when necessary – but otherwise not interfere unless it pertains to preservation and security, as it were.

Secondly, The Legislative has no right to absolute, arbitrary power over the lives and fortunes of the people. [RIGHT HERE, THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD HAVE NO RIGHT TO TAKE YOUR MONEY!]

Thirdly, The supreme power cannot justly take from any man any part of his property, without his consent in person or by his representative.

These are some of the first principles of natural law and justice. It is utterly irreconcilable to these principles and to many other fundamental maxims of the common law, common sense, and reason that a [[government]] should have a right at pleasure to give and grant the property of the [[citizens]].

 

Ladies and gentlemen, these are but a small portion of the profound words that helped shape our country into a FREE NATION. We cannot concede to the bullies of the government. This is our land. This is our liberty. This is our freedom. Don’t stand by in apathy and just give it away to a bunch of rapacious and predatory vultures.

You see, a statesman is a diplomat or other notable public figure who has had a long and respected career at the national or international level. Generally, they act in a capacity that is for the greater good of the nation and their respective common concerns and interests. We used to have statesmen in this country, in fact, they founded our nation, but statesmen have become a dying breed and are all but extinct; they have been replaced by an alpha predictor species known as “the politician”.

Politicians are hollow shells – puppets if you will. They are whores-for-hire that hate freedom and get intoxicated by power. They use race and religious divisiveness as a means to strip us of our rights and send us to our homes like whipped dogs. They feed off of our apathy and loathe our attempts to exercise the freedoms bestowed upon us by our creator that were ratified by the constitutionalists who found our national identity of liberty. They use the media to spread their lies and propaganda while dumbing-down the population with cheap technology and shiny objects. The worst part about politicians is that they have fed us their garbage for so long that we actually standby – albeit seething – completely enamored by the circus that has become our ruling oligarchical plutocracy.

If you need clarification, U.S. Representative Don Bacon is a statesman. Why? Because he served his nation with honor and integrity for 30-years while in the U.S. Air Force; he wants to represent Nebraska’s values and help affect change in Washington DC. Brad Ashford, on the other hand, is a career politician who has done nothing significant other than to isolate and serve himself. One is a statesman, the other is a politician… and Nebraskans, much like a majority of Americans, have had enough of politicians.

On March 5th, 1772… Joseph Warren drafted correspondence entitled “Constitutional Liberty and Arbitrary Power.” In an excerpt, he said:

“When we turn over the historic page, and trace the rise and fall of states and empires, the mighty revolutions which have so often varied the face of the world strike our minds with solemn surprise, and we are naturally led to endeavor to search out the cause of such astonishing changes. It was this noble attachment to a free Constitution which raised ancient Rome, from the smallest beginnings to that bright summit of happiness and glory to which she arrived, and it was the loss of this which plunged her from that summit into the black gulf of infamy and slavery. It was this attachment which inspired her Senators with Wisdom; it was this which glowed in the breast of her heroes; it was this which guarded her liberties and extended her dominions, gave peace at home, and commanded the respect abroad, and when this decayed, her magistrates lost their reverence for justice and the laws, and degenerated into tyrants and oppressors; her Senators, forgetful of their dignity, and seduced by base corruption, betrayed their country…

What can be proposed by the repeated attacks made upon our freedom, I cannot surmise, even leaving justice and humanity out of the question. We are governed by the absolute command of others; our property is to be taken away without our consent; if we complain, our complaints are treated with contempt; if we assert our rights, that assertion is deemed as insolence; if we humbly offer to submit the matter to the impartial decision of reason, the sword is judged the most proper argument to silence our murmurs!”

These aforementioned words ring as true as they did nearly 250 years ago. We need to demand a need for change, and we cannot accept anything less than the liberty and freedom granted to us by God at the time of our births. We cannot allow the DC elite to continue to act like third-world, banana-republic despots. And we certainly cannot allow feckless career politicians, like Brad Ashford, to continue to propagate this nonsense because they cannot serve anyone but themselves.

 

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[1] Sainato, M. (2017, July 27). Corruption Scandals Are Piling Up for Democrats. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from http://observer.com/2017/07/corruption-scandal-democratic-party/

[2] Lake, E., & Hudson, A. (2009, April 16). Napolitano stands by the controversial report. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/apr/16/napolitano-stands-rightwing-extremism/

Ready to Rumble

A Salute to the Volunteers

Last night, 300 of our state’s most committed and hardworking political volunteers gathered at the Omaha Hilton to mark the NEGOP’s Founders’ Day — an annual tribute to the party faithful who do the yeoman’s work knocking on doors, walking in parades, and making phone calls for candidates they believe in.

These Nebraskans are some of our best. They embody the kind of civic engagement and respectful participation in the democratic process we need more of around the country.

Governor Pete Ricketts brought his buddy and fellow businessman-turned-governor of Arizona Doug Ducey as the keynote. Ducey did a nice job walking through Nebraska’s many successes and recounted his own disbelief on Election Day 2016 when Donald Trump turned the political world on its head. Ducey was affable, self effacing, and ended with a call to grow the party. Can I get an Amen?

It was a gathering of Nebraska political heavyweights. There was a lot of love in the room for Senator Deb Fischer as she reminded us of her deep love for Nebraska while introducing Governor Pete Ricketts. Don Bacon and his indefatigable enthusiasm were both present and accounted for, as was the ever congenial Adrian Smith, Jeff Fortenberry, Jean Stothert, Rita Sanders, Aimee Melton, and many, many other electeds who had gathered to say thank you to the men and women whose blood, sweat, and tears give them the chance to govern.

Ben Sasse was not there, but had a letter read. Many in the room were hoping to hear from him on the upcoming healthcare bill, but alas his schedule required him to be elsewhere. Rumor has it he was in Cali with donors – surf’s up!

The energy and organization of the NEGOP was on full display last night. With marquee races for the Governor, US Senate, 3 House seats, all of the constitutional offices, and 24 seats in the legislature, Nebraska Republicans are ready to get to work, and make no mistake, they are ready to rumble.

Kleeb on the Ropes

It’s also worth noting that the Nebraska Dems still can’t land candidates to enter most of the statewide races — most glaringly, the race for GOVERNOR. And oddly, the NDP twitter account is shilling for independent candidate Bob Krist. Weird, right? Do they realize Krist will also be looking to take down their future standard bearer, if they can find one? Or has Kleeb just given up?

I hear she is considering a bid herself, but presumably she is shrewd enough to know she is too extreme to ever win a statewide race. A loss would tarnish her brand, so my guess is she stays on the sidelines. Safer that way.

Not sure Jane Kleeb can claim to lead a credible statewide party without a candidate for governor. Conversations with traditional Democrat party stalwarts in both Lincoln and Omaha over recent weeks continue to lay bare the mistrust and skepticism with which Kleeb is viewed. Her extreme views on issues from abortion to Keystone and her disregard for hardworking union members have pushed many old school Democrats out.

Bernie’s Back in NE Politics

Did anyone else catch that the NDP Twitter account endorsed Bernie Sanders’ single-payer government run healthcare scheme? Quite a statement for the state party.

Serious question: Was that party position discussed at a committee meeting or just trigger happy Jane going on gut? My bet’s on the latter, but please enlighten me if this was debated and agreed upon by the state party.

Kara Eastman, who is eager to pass any litmus test the left can throw her way, was quick to get in formation and support Bernie. Brad Ashford is still polling, no doubt, but made some incoherent rumination expressing concern on it. And not a peep from the Nebraska Democrat Senate candidate, Jane Raybould. Surprise, surprise.

Anyone who is unsure of a position on this should call Heath Mello and ask him how Bernie’s magic worked out for him. I hear has a lot of time on his hands.

TGIF.

A message from Street Sweeper

Hello Leavenworth St. fans!

I apologize for not being on top of the political news the past month or so. And I regret that this day had to come, but I sort of figured it would at some point.

I will be stepping back from Leavenworth St. – the talk of Nebraska politics, again, for at least a year.

However, LeavenworthSt.com will still live on, with more and/or newer writers. Some will write under their own names. Others under pen names.

But the hope here is that you will get at least a post a week — and hopefully much, much more than that — to read and comment on.

Now I’ve tried this before, and the writers sometimes end up realizing how hard it is to kick out a post a week. Or every two weeks. Or every month. (You get the picture.)

But hopefully you’ll get your fill of Nebraska local, state and federal politics, as well as discussions on all political topics of the day. The writers have been given pretty much carte blanche to write on topics they want, and I hope they will do so.

You will still be able to send in emails to LeavenworthSt (at) gmail.com, and both of Leavenworth St.’s social media sites — Leavenworth St. on The Facebook and @LeavenworthSt on the Twitter — will continue to be up. If you want to get notice of when there is a new post up, you can subscribe up top right of this page, or you can just Like L.St. on The Facebook and/or follow on the Twitter where new posts will be linked.

There could and should be some exciting races in Nebraska in 2018, and I regret that I won’t be able to take part here on Leavenworth St.

But YOU will still get to (Gaia willing).

God Bless, and au revoir (for now).

 

Feeling the Future

Oh, and one last note.

After the election I told a number of friends…and WROTE IT here at the end of May, that President Trump is most willing to “make deals” so that he can get successes.

And those deals could come with just about anyone in Congress or beyond. As I noted:

“In order to ‘keep winning’ he’d have to make deals with the Democrats, thereby diminishing his Conservative cred…”

I sort of thought this would come later than year one…but here we are.

Now I just wonder if the rest of the discussion from that post will come true.

Discuss amongst yourselves!
Have fun!

And come back on Monday for posts (hopefully) from some different people on Leavenworth St!

Royal to seek State Treasurer gig

Leavenworth St. has learned that Taylor Royal will indeed run for the Republican nomination for State Treasurer in 2018.

Royal’s campaign plans had been on hold after creating a website and considering all of his options for the statewide office. But he has been making the campaign rounds lately and his announcement (or announcement to announce) is considered imminent.

State Senator John Murante (R-Big Fred’s) who announced his campaign a few months ago, is currently the only other candidate in the primary race.

But Royal’s plans have seemingly been in the works for a while. Coming off his surprising notoriety in the 2017 Omaha Mayor’s race where he changed the focus for all the campaigns, Royal, a certified public accountant, would seem to be in his wheelhouse for the Treasurer’s office.

This has the potential for one of the more interesting primary races in the state next year.

 

Topic of the Week

I’m guessing you commenters want to wring your hands about DACA.

Most Republicans say it was the correct, Constitutional, move by President Trump to rescind this “Executive authority” which many agree does not exist. And Congressional Republican pretty much uniformly say it’s their job to address this immigration issue.

Many, many Democrats say it is “heartless” to change the DACA order…and simply want the status quo? No change to this perfect immigration system we now have? Or something?

Unclear.

Rock n’ roll.

 

“XOXO Betsy Riot”

Ah Betsy Riot.

You know your audience so well.

Scream more at those Republicans who pay full-fare for Nebraska football tickets.

They appreciate you calling them Neo-Nazis. And the louder your scream, the more likely they are to come to your side of thinking.

I’m sure of it.

Ashford Riot

Well, if instead of the Mayweather-McGregor fight, you were betting on when Brad Ashford would flip-flop on another issue, and you placed your money on “This week!”…winner winner chicken dinner!

Brad Ashford stepped bravely forward and tweeted and re-tweeted and re-posted and Facebooked how much he luuuuuvs DACA. How much does he love DACA?

A lot!

Because he says so, right here:

I support the existing DACA and oppose the efforts by the administration to repeal it. 

Which is awesome, because he said the exact opposite in 2015 when he was still a Congressman:

“I do not agree with the unilateral action taken by the president,” Ashford said.

That’s fine. We’re sure none of Ashford’s opponents have paid any attention to this.

Probably won’t even bring it up…in their literature…online ads…in debates…

Keep on truckin’, Brad. (Let us know if you’re sticking with that name, btw…)

 

Riotous

The whole yell-down of the UNL students on campus has pretty much been covered everywhere, locally and nationally.

One interesting point was what UNL “PhD student and lecturer” Courtney Lawton was chanting at the UNL TPUSA student rep, Katie Mullen:

As you watch it, you hear Lawton saying, “neo-fascist Becky right here, Becky the neo-fascist right here.”

This meant nothing to me, and probably many others.
But it means something to Lawton. As noted on the Powerline blog:

This is odd. Did Lawton somehow think that Katie’s name was Becky?

I don’t think so. This is the sort of thing that most people don’t know, but the Urban Dictionary says “Becky” means “a basic bitch.” It also means “hot white girl” and denotes a woman who enjoys giving oral sex.

It is this last meaning that was celebrated by a rapper named Plies in his rap titled “Becky,” which has been viewed over 10 million times on YouTube.

How very woke of Ms. Lawton.

And another person noted that Lawton seems to be a member of the Betsy Riot group. (Here she is at the TPUSA table, and another of a Rioter (note shoes and rings…).

You remember that Betsy Riot are the ones who do things like throw blood on Senator Deb Fischer’s door, and plasters this stuff on Don Bacon’s office.

Maybe I’ve missed the local Democrats denouncing all of this. Maybe I’ve missed their strong statements castigating this abhorrent behaviour of their supporters.

But probably not.

To hear a little more, here is Nebraska Regent Hal Daub discussing the matter with KLIN’s Coby Mach:

 

Workin’ for the Weekend

But hey, not to be outdone, here is your’s truly discussing Democrat Jane Raybould’s U.S. Senate candidacy with Mach last week.

Enjoy!

 

Viva la Papa!

Recently there were news reports about former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer getting the opportunity to meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican. This was news since Spicer didn’t get to meet with the Pope when President Trump did, and Spicer is Catholic, etc. etc. Palace intrigue and all that.

In any case, when this story hit, there was further info that four U.S. Congressmen were in the Papal audience (of about 100 people, it seems) with Spicer.

One of them was…Rep. Jeff Fortenberry.

And Fortenberry’s office confirmed that he WAS there, on behalf of the International Catholic Legislators Network.

His office reports that Fortenberry, “also had bilateral meetings with the Vatican foreign ministry, the US Embassy to the Vatican, and the US Mission to the United Nations on food security issues.”

But, apparently no photos with the Pontiff.

Or WERE THERE???

There’s this pic of the Pope greeting the audience, (with Sean Spicer in the front row, right, taking an iPhone pic):

 

Then, let’s glance to the left, back of the room. Who’s silver-gray doo is that back there?

Could it be?

Hmm. We may need an ex cathedra ruling on this…

 

Blank slate

Have a great weekend and Go Huskers!

Democrat challenger for Senator Deb Fischer

Leavenworth St. has learned that United States Senator Deb Fischer will have a Democrat challenger.

We are told that Lincoln City Councilwoman Jane Raybould will announce on Saturday that she will be a candidate for the Democrat nomination for the U.S. Senate in 2018. Raybould was the Democrat nominee for Lt. Governor, with running mate Chuck Hassebrook, in 2014.

According to an extensive June 2017 LJS story about Raybould, (wasn’t that a coincidence…) Raybould spent over 20 years working and living in Washington, D.C. Now she seems to be itching to get back.

How itchy?

Well, soon after hearing about Raybould’s venture into the Senate campaign arena, another contact suggested that Raybould’s real plan isn’t even the Senate. Word is that she is realistic about her chances against Nebraska’s well-liked and respected Senior Senator. (i.e. Not good chances.)

So what’s the REAL plan?

Build up her name ID in 2018…and run for Jeff Fortenberry’s Congressional seat in 2020.

Well…it’s a plan…maybe.

In any case, Raybould has shown that she is gung-ho for playing politics in Lincoln. Earlier this year, she and her husband provided the seed money for a Super PAC…to elected select candidates to the Lincoln City Government. (She even has something in common with the Koch brothers!)

Why she and her husband, along with the Mayor of Lincoln, found the need to go top-secret Super PAC, instead of simply donating to the candidate or party is unknown. (Maybe she isn’t that into the party…)

We will presumably be hearing more about Raybould in the next few days. (And btw, the countdown clock at JaneRaybould.com is set to explode around 1am on Friday morning…) It will be interesting to see how much the national Democrats get behind her as well.

 

A third in the 2nd?

On the House front in Nebraska’s 2nd District, Leavenworth St. is also hearing rumblings of a THIRD candidate on the Democrat side.

Currently there is former Congressman Brad Ashford, the conventional front-runner and prefered choice of the national Democrats. They know him, know he has name ID, and know he can raise money.

But local Democrats also know that he’s not really “one of them”.

He has been known to deny the Democrats three times before the cock crows (I hate ObamaCare! I like Jeb Bush! I’ll be in whatever party you want me to be!) And he spent lots of time diving towards the middle in the last election, only to come up short.

So now there is an arguably bona-fide Democrat in the race in Kara Eastman. Whether or not she inspires hard-core Democrats in the district is one thing. But whether that translates to any real name ID or fundraising is another.

Could she beat Ashford? It’s possible.

But if another candidate jumps in? Unless that person has super name ID and fundraising abilities (the one we heard about lacks both), all that will happen is the third candidate would split the anti-Ashford vote. And Ashford skates into the General.

Depending on your outlook, that may be a good thing or a bad thing. But that’s the reality from these seats. We will have to wait and see what and who comes forward in the next few weeks and months.

 

Political drive

At the top, I would like to express my condolences to KFAB’s Gary Sadlemyer, and all of his family and friends, after the death of his wife.

Before her death, Sadlemyer eloquently told listeners (which he didn’t have to do) why he had been gone from his seat in the station at various times recently, and expressed his love and devotion to his wife.

We send our prayers to them and for them at this difficult time.

 

Oh, what do commenters want to discuss?

So lets dive into the Charlottesville issue, because of course. The only local angle seems to be, “how MUCH do you hate Nazis?” (Which is pretty much a direct quote from “Monty Python’s Life of Brian”, when Brian was asked just how MUCH he hated the Romans. Brian’s response: “a LOT!”)

As much as the President is getting criticized for his statements, the one that really missed the mark is when he said, “very fine people on both sides”.

Here’s the deal: Let’s say there’s a good ole’ boy, never meanin’ no harm, who hates racism, but feels like the taking down the Robert E. Lee statue is an affront to his heritage. He feels like one of the “Dukes of Hazzard” who named their car the “General Lee”.

There’s an argument to be made there. Not necessarily a winning argument (Pat Borchers is one of many pointing out the reasoning behind so many Confederate statues). But it is an argument that can be made without it meaning that you’re automatically pro-slavery or pro-Jim Crow, or something.

But the PROBLEM with this particular march, in Charlottesville, was that it was billed as a “White Lives Matter Rally”. And then the torches came out. And then the literal battle lines were drawn between the two sides. And the whole statue thing was an afterthought.

At any of those points, if you were actually the above-referenced “good ole’ boy, never meanin’ no harm”, the literal red-flag should have told you to turn around and go home. You don’t join the march. You don’t pick up a torch. If you do, you just lost your “never meanin’ no harm” badge, and you sure as hell aren’t a “fine person”.

There were no “good Nazis” there (like a Max von Sydow in “Victory” or Sgt. Schulz in “Hogan’s Heroes“).

Clear enough? Good.

Now, let’s jump to the OTHER side of the literal battle lines.

If you show up to protest said Nazis and White Supremacists, good for you. Getting a permit is a better thing, but let’s say you’re being generally peaceful. (As near as I’ve read, it seems that the woman who was killed in the car attack was among those protesting peacefully.)

Nota bene: “Peaceful” doesn’t mean you try to get in the face of the dude with the Nazi flag to try to instigate him. And it should go without saying that “peaceful” also doesn’t include bringing and using your preferred battle items for when you plan to throw down with the other side.

And here, we are specifically calling out the “Antifa” nut jobs who have done this across the country, using violence to get their way or make their points.

As the New York Times noted:

Unlike most of the counterdemonstrators in Charlottesville and elsewhere, members of antifa have shown no qualms about using their fists, sticks or canisters of pepper spray to meet an array of right-wing antagonists whom they call a fascist threat to American democracy. As explained this week by a dozen adherents of the movement, the ascendant new right in the country requires a physical response.

Jonah Goldberg of National Review writes about this today:

Fighting Nazis is a good thing, but fighting Nazis doesn’t necessarily make you or your cause good. By my lights this is simply an obvious fact.

The greatest Nazi-killer of the 20th century was Josef Stalin. He also killed millions of his own people and terrorized, oppressed, enslaved, or brutalized tens of millions more. The fact that he killed Nazis during the Second World War (out of self-preservation, not principle) doesn’t dilute his evil one bit

.

The young Communists and fascists fighting for power in the streets of 1920s Germany had far more in common with each other than they had with decent liberals or conservatives, as we understand those terms today. That’s always true of violent radicals and would-be totalitarians.

As Hitler solidified power and effectively outlawed the Communist Party of Germany, The Communist International (Comintern) abandoned its position that socialist and progressive groups that were disloyal to Moscow were “fascist” and instead encouraged Communists everywhere to build “popular fronts” against the common enemy of Nazism.

These alliances of convenience with social democrats and other progressives were a great propaganda victory for Communists around the world because they bolstered the myth that Communists were just members of the Left coalition in the fight against Hitler, bigotry, fascism, etc.

(President Trump) borrowed from Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity the bogus term “alt-left” to describe the antifa radicals.

The term is bogus for the simple reason that, unlike the alt-right, nobody calls themselves “the alt-left.” And that’s too bad. One of the only nice things about the alt-right is that its leaders are honest about the fact that they want nothing to do with traditional American conservatism. Like the original Nazis, they seek to replace the traditional Right with their racial hogwash.

The antifa crowd has a very similar agenda with regard to traditional American liberalism. These goons and thugs oppose free speech, celebrate violence, despise dissent, and have little use for anything else in the American political tradition. But many liberals, particularly in the media, are victims of the same kind of confusion that vexed so much of American liberalism in the 20th century. Because antifa suddenly has the (alt-)right enemies, they must be the good guys. They’re not.

And that’s why this debate is so toxically stupid. Fine, antifa isn’t as bad as the KKK. Who cares? Since when is being less bad than the Klan a major moral accomplishment?

This is the point that is worthwhile, and may be the point that the President rather ham-handedly was trying to make.

And another thing to ask: The guy who drove the car into everyone at the Nazi rally. Is he “better” or “worse” than the guy who shot up the Republican Congressional baseball practice? As far as I’m concerned, they’re both going to Hell. The only difference is what sort of ironic punishment Satan decides to give them for eternity.

(And as I get ready to post this, it looks like Steve Bannon is out at the White House, which will be a joy to many, including Goldberg and others at National Review, who have despised Bannon’s seemingly close ties to the alt-Right movement.)

 

If only Ashford’s preferred candidate, Jeb Bush, had been elected…

Onto happier thoughts…

Congressman Don Bacon was on the Twitters asking…

I agreed with 2014 version of who opposed ACA…but he flipflopped on this like many other issues. Maybe he’ll flip again?

Well Congressman, there was word that at Brad Ashford’s recent “townhall” (no word on why Ashford didn’t have ONE of these when he was an actual House Rep…) he did just that flipping and flopping.

Ashford reportedly said that he would favor an increase in the Social Security age. Which is surprising, since Ashford slammed Bacon for this in the 2016 campaign. And as a matter of fact, the DCCC spent about $2M attacking Bacon for this position.

So Ashford has been on both sides of ObamaCare. Both sides of the Keystone Pipeline. Now apparently both sides of the Social Security issue.

As someone once said, voters want a compass, not a weathervane.

 

Nebraska values

Senator Deb Fischer had three bills passed in the U.S. Senate before Congress recessed for the August break. (You can read the details of them here.)

Since then she has been traveling across Nebraska meeting with groups and other constituents — as she does every August.

Then again, Fischer is back in Nebraska nearly every weekend, so August meetings aren’t any real change to her busy schedule.

 

Driving me nuts

Here is a story that ground my gears this morning — as someone who started their political career as a driver on a statewide campaign.

Politico has a story about a staff memo leaked from a Congressional office on “Instructions on Staffing and Driving” for the Congressman in his Indiana Congressional district.

The Politico headline is: The agonizing, 8-page memo on how to chauffeur a congressman – Pity the poor aide charged with driving Rep. Todd Rokita around his district.

No, pity the boss of the snowflakes who wrote this article.

As a former driver, I never had a candidate or anyone else I had to drive treat me any way other than respectfully. (That being said, they’re not ALL like that, but surprise.)

But this memo is for a young or inexperienced staffer to learn how to be prepared, as well as to understand that they’re not out on a burger run with their buddy. They are driving a mobile office. Their job is to treat the Member the same way they would if they were sitting in their office with them. This is especially the case where “Driver” is often one of the entry-level type positions for the new kid out of college, who never had a job before, now in close daily proximity to the top person in the office.

Maybe this particular Rep is known has a hard-ass, with lots of turnover or some such. Unknown. But if you’re new to politics, or any office situation, you could do a LOT worse than having this type of memo to let you know the basics of doing your job.

That the writers here don’t understand, and sneer at this, is also part of the problem.

 

Workin’ for it

Say hey, thanks for reading and have a great weekend!

Remember to Follow @LeavenworthSt on the Twitter and Like Leavenworth St. on The Facebook!

Hal Daub: It’s Time to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline

Hal Daub is a lifelong Nebraskan. He is a member of the University of Nebraska Board of Regents and is a former Representative of Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional District and former Mayor of the City of Omaha.

This week, the Nebraska Public Safety Commission (PSC) will meet to hear final arguments in approving the last leg of the Keystone XL pipeline. The decision of the PSC will be the end of a process that has lasted for far too long, and has held up economic benefits for communities across Nebraska and the country.

Since 2009, environmental extremists have worked to stall production of Keystone by promoting doomsday scenarios with little basis in facts. The realities are that Keystone will lead to thousands of jobs, hundreds of millions of dollars in new revenue, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

We can all agree that safekeeping our lands, whether in Nebraska or other states, is of utmost importance. That’s one of the reasons we need pipelines like Keystone.

As a country, we still rely on clean fossil fuels, like natural gas, to power our daily lives. That isn’t going to change anytime soon.  While one day we may be able to affordably depend on energy sources other than fossil fuels, we simply aren’t there yet. Therefore these energy sources need to be transported, and pipelines are the safest way of doing so. Without them, we would be forced to rely on rail, tankers, and trucking transports, which have far more risks than pipelines. In fact, 99.99 percent of natural gas and petroleum products moved via pipelines reach their destinations safely. The Obama Administration’s own State Department’s review of Keystone concluded alternative transport options all had higher environmental impacts.

Ironically, if environmental activists had their way and banned pipelines, we would end up producing even more greenhouse gasses by having to utilize modes of transport reliant with high emission levels.

There’s also the vast economic benefits directly related to Keystone. Construction of the pipeline itself would create thousands of jobs, along with the thousands created as a result of new investments in the energy sector.

Keystone will also generate about $55 million in new property taxes for 27 counties, 12 of which are in Nebraska. One study concluded Nebraska would add over $580 million in labor income, boosting the state’s GDP by $679 million over the 15 years after completing construction.

The benefits of Keystone speak for themselves, however it’s the alternatives that are most alarming. Radical environmentalists either don’t know or don’t care about the disastrous consequences that would occur if they achieved their goals of banning pipelines everywhere. We’ve already seen what happens to communities where it’s been done before.

New York State self-imposed a pipeline ban, and the results are exactly what you would expect. By 2020, the state is expected to see 1.6 billion less in their GDP, and the loss of 17,400 jobs. The rest of the Northeast can expect 78,000 jobs to disappear, thanks to New York’s decision.

It’s fairly simple, this comes down to a choice that protestors don’t want to acknowledge exists: are we willing to pay more in energy costs, for the services we receive, and the goods we purchase, in exchange for banning pipelines and ultimately fossil fuel production? I’m not.

It is intellectually dishonest for any group protesting this pipeline that 1) has never protested any of the scores of Nebraska underground pipelines crisscrossing our state in the past, 2) does not recognize the international relationships on the issue of trade with our best partner, Canada, and 3) does not protest railroad and trucking transport of oil that is much more dangerous on every count than pipeline conveyance.  If that were the case, their howls would be more logical and would then have the climate-change apologists acting more rationally.  As the protesters stand, their position is discredited by their inconsistent approach.

For too long we’ve delayed unleashing the economic potential of the Keystone XL pipeline. With approval from the PSC, we can safely transport necessary fuels, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and generate hundreds of millions of dollars for our great state. This is about as simple of a decision as there is.