Tuesday, October 29, 2013

ObamaCare: Define Success!

Local morning talk show host Dillon Honcoop noted that people focusing on the failure of the HealthCare.gov website were missing the big picture, namely that millions of people are losing their health insurance due to ObamaCare.

While I believe Dillon was correct as far he went, I think he is missing an even bigger picture: ObamaCare was never intended to succeed in the way you or I, or dozens of Democrats in the US legislature who voted for it, would define success.

The progenitors of ObamaCare measure success by the degree of chaos that it can cause in the health insurance and health care provider market. Because the ultimate goal is single payer, which will be much easier to implement when people are demanding relief from the bomb that is ObamaCare. Who knew?

I think Obama knew, Pelosi knew, probably Harry Reid, and a handful of other Democrats in the legislature knew. The rest of them were hornswoggled into believing that ObamaCare was this benevolent thing that would bring affordable health care to the masses. They were the useful idiots.

They were the useful idiots who didn't read the bill, because the bill was designed to be unreadable. Most of the text simply modifies arcane elements of other laws. It would take a team of lawyers months of research to make sense of it. The rest of them simply read the executive summary, assumed it was an honest representation of the bill's intent and scope, and voted on that basis.

President Obama famously said (numerous times), "If you like your plan, you can keep it. Period". That is now obviously false. Since I believe Obama knew, I'm calling this a lie. So, why would Obama lie? He had to lie, in order to make ObamaCare succeed in the way he wants it to succeed. You might say I'm a conspiracy theorist, but a week ago, you would have called me that for saying millions would lose their health care coverage. There's a big difference between conspiracy theory and conspiracy fact.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Grammar and Cultural Chauvinism

Supposably, for all intensive purposes, irregardless of the fact that I could care less, I'd buy an expresso, excetera, pacifically for anyone who realized that it is of upmost importance that we use proper spelling and grammar. Otherwise, we'll look dull and uneducated, and no one will read our resume'.

Does anybody else think our preoccupation with spelling and grammar is a trifle arbitrary? I have always been a stickler for good spelling and grammar, but seriously, it is arbitrary, right? It has to be. English grew out of a need to communicate, long before we had any concept of English grammar. The English language is an ad-hoc hodgepodge of other languages and dialects. 

Shakespeare liked to toy with the language, and he frequently invented new words. He had the liberty of defining the part of speech and the spelling. Why did that spelling have to be locked in place for ever after? Spelling wasn't actually "standardized" until the first dictionaries began to capture the current (local) spellings, or assigned spellings based on the current (local) pronunciation. That was arbitrary. 

I think the current preoccupation with spelling and grammar actually stems from a need for educated people to be able to draw a line between themselves and other, uneducated people. I honestly do believe that. The same goes for the disdain for "Ebonics", various southern dialects, the use of "ain't", and so on. 

When we say, "nice day, eh", we're either mocking or identifying with Canadians, eh? When we say, "We be racis'", we're either mocking or identifying with the black culture. When we say, "Oh my God! Gag me with a spoon!", we're mocking the Valley Girl culture. And it works both ways: When a Negro uses "good" grammar, s/he is said to be "acting white". 

I think we humans engage in cultural chauvinism without realizing it, even at the very same time we denounce it. We want to be accepted by our culture and by our peers, and language is just as much a badge or uniform as skin color or clothing. "Good" spelling and grammar are just other ways to impose uniformity. It doesn't bother me, but I think this observation will irritate 'progressives' who pride themselves on their expensive liberal arts education and impeccable spelling and grammar. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Obama Death Star

I saw this over at Common Sense with Paul Jacob, and I liked it so much that I stole it:

It accompanies his article, Affordable [sic] Healthcare [sick].

Saturday, October 19, 2013

LA Times Censoring Scientific Debate

I heard on the radio yesterday that the LA Times will no longer print letters to the editor denying climate change, on the assumption, I guess, that such denial would be tantamount to racism or gay-bashing. They evidently do not understand science, the scientific method, or how these issues are settled. Did you know that Einstein's theory of relativity is still being tested? So far the tests continue to support and validate the theory, but even at this late date, we could find something that blows it away. But at least relativity is testable.

I think it’s important to note that the LA Times, as a private newspaper, may exercise their first amendment rights as they see fit. Freedom of the press means newspapers, blogs and broadcasters are free to publish, or not to publish whatever they like. The fact that they have their heads in the sand (or up their asses) is their prerogative. The appropriate response is to start your own publication. “Fair and balanced” isn't a single-publisher proposition. Competition is.

I do not deny that climate changes all the time, as it has done since the dawn of time. We have incontrovertible records of it. I do not deny that we may still be burrowing out of the last ice age. We have incontrovertible records of that too. But I do deny that there is any incontrovertible evidence that humans are in any way responsible, nor can there be. It isn't testable! That's because in order to verify anthropogenic global warming climate change chaos (AGCC) experimentally, we would need a "control planet" (a duplicate earth, but without humans, or at least not industrialized -- it doesn't seem practical to me).

The climate science community has tried to address this shortcoming through computer modeling, but computer models are simply buggy self-fulfilling prophecies. There is no natural real-world way to prove that the computer models have accounted for everything - initial conditions, seemingly negligible factors, getting cause and effect reversed, and the unknown. We can't model what we don't know, and we can't validate what we can't test. It's all synthetic.

I think it's ironic that many of the people espousing computer modeling as a reliable way to prove the AGCC hypothesis are the same ones who denounce genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in foods, artificial flavoring, and who demand "naturally organic" foods. It's inconsistent, to say the least.

Friday, October 18, 2013

'Progressivism' is a Religion: Faith Based, Not Fact Based

Gaia Thingy
For 100 years, classical liberals* have been trying to discredit 'progressivism', A.K.A., socialism, communism, statism, whatever you want to call it. 'Progressives' resent the open market, capitalist system that is based on merit, productivity and industry, because either they, or the people they claim to sympathize with, cannot compete.

While classical liberals have always relied on charity to help the less fortunate (but not the indigent), 'progressives' want to rely on government for that function. While neither mechanism is perfect, government has been tried for the past 100 years, and all we have to show for it is more poverty and more debt. That is because government cannot produce wealth, and when it tries to redistribute wealth, that merely discourages productivity and encourages dependency.

So why has 'progressivism' continued to flourish, while classical liberalism continues to decline? Is it because people don't really want to be free? Is it because people are fundamentally lazy? Is it because people don't like the prosperity that comes with freedom? I think not. So what then?

Well, I think we have been going about discrediting 'progressivism' all wrong. We've been using facts and logic. Facts and logic don't work on 'progressives', because 'progressivism' is a faith-based dogma. It's like a religion. Nowhere is this more evident than with anthropogenic global warming climate change chaos. As I said in an earlier post,
The man-made climate change hypothesis has so many discrepancies, loose ends, untestable truth-claims and outright fraud that it is just begging for some critical analysis. Sympathetic peer review and "consensus" is not experiment. Without rigorous experimental confirmation, the climate change hypothesis is simply a matter of faith -- another religion. If it was properly called religion instead of science, the fact that it should have no role in public policy would be a no-brainer.
When the watermelons call us deniers instead of skeptics, I want to yell, "Don't you mean heretic? This isn't the Holy Roman Empire! I'm sorry about the rest of the world, but here in the United States, we have something called 'The First Amendment'. We don't have to subscribe to your religion!"
The fact is, classical liberals need to find out if anyone has ever discredited a religion before. If so, then we need to use that tactic. If there is no tactic, we need to invent one. The 'progressives' found a tactic that works well against us, namely Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals. There are some books that claim to use Alinsky's rules against 'progressives' without compromising our principles, and maybe that will work

However, I don't think a derivative approach is necessarily the best approach. I would like to come up with something purpose-built for defeating faith-based systems. So I started looking for articles on the web that claim to discredit established religions. I found one, but this argument fails against Christians, because it makes a fundamental error as to why Christians believe in God. Now don't get me wrong, many Christians and scientists have this wrong also (as I explain here), but this guy doesn't get it right. 

So I don't have any good ideas yet, but let's all start thinking. Just remember that the same tactics that work against 'progressives' may also work on Christians and Jews. I don't want to hurt them, so we need to give them a heads-up. These are dangerous times. 

*Classical liberals are people who believe in liberty, as opposed to those people who call themselves liberals, but who are really illiberal control freaks, A.K.A., 'progressives'. I'm reclaiming the word, "liberal". 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Murphy's Other Fifteen Laws

Most of you have heard of Murphy's Law: "If anything can go wrong, it will". Or "Anything that can possibly go wrong, does." It turns out there really was a man named Murphy - Edward Murphy, although he really did not coin the phrase. According to Wikipedia, he was blaming an assistant for his own lack of verification of some accelerometer sensors at an Air Force proving site.

Anyway, the following were also not coined by Murphy, but they are similarly cynical:
  1. Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
  2. A fine is a tax for doing wrong. A tax is a fine for doing well.
  3. He who laughs last thinks slowest.
  4. A day without sunshine is like, well it's night.
  5. Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.
  6. Those that live by the sword get shot by those who don't.
  7. Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.
  8. The 50-50-90 rule: Anytime you have a 50-50 chance of getting something right, there's a 90% probability you'll get it wrong.
  9. It is said that if you line up all the cars in the world end-to-end, someone from California* would be stupid enough to try to pass them. 
  10. If the shoe fits, get another one just like it. 
  11. The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who got there first.
  12. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will sit in a boat all day, drinking beer.
  13. Flashlight: A case for holding dead batteries.
  14. God gave you toes as a device for finding furniture in the dark. 
  15. When you go into court, you are putting yourself in the hands of twelve people who weren't smart enough to get out of jury duty.
*or any other neighboring state or country.

(Thanks to Uncle Richard for sending me these.)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Where Are You on the The Nolan Chart?

What is your political persuasion? As you can see, I sit in the libertarian corner of this chart. It says that I am about 80% classical liberal on personal issues, and about 90% classical liberal on economic issues.

How did I find that out? I took this quiz. If I took it again, I might get a slightly different answer. The quiz consists of ten questions. I think that might be too few to get a truly accurate reading, but it is interesting.

The really interesting thing about this is that most 'progressives' would call me a right wing conservative, which I most certainly am not. That would demand that I tolerate far less personal freedom than I am comfortable with.

A hard core right-winger would demand nearly zero personal freedom and nearly 100% economic freedom, while a hard core left-winger would demand nearly zero economic freedom and nearly 100% personal freedom. Interestingly, a statist demands nearly zero personal freedom and nearly zero economic freedom. A libertarian demands nearly 100% personal and economic freedom.

I am not an anarchist though, which brings me back to this other chart that I made a couple of years ago:

It isn't to scale, of course. There is no scale. But it does illustrate how individual liberty increases with increasing government - up to a point. Beyond that point, government becomes oppressive, and self-determination begins to diminish. So in the general scheme of things, I believe that I am more of a centrist - perhaps to a little right of center. The Nolan Chart may require some more calibration. 

Epic Fail, and Fail, and Fail, and Fail Again!

I adapted this from an email circulating the interweb, entitled "Walmart vs. The Morons" (snopes...) (my contributions are highlighted):

  • Americans spend $36,000,000 at Walmart every hour of every day.
  • This works out to $20,928 profit every minute.
  • Walmart will sell more from January 1 to St. Patrick's day (march 17th) than target sells all year.
  • Walmart is bigger than Home Depot + Kroger + Target +Sears + Costco + K-Mart combined.
  • Walmart employs 1. 6 million people, is the world's largest private employer, and most speak English.
  • Walmart is the largest company in the history of the world.
  • Walmart now sells more food than Kroger and Safeway combined, and keep in mind they did this in only fifteen years.
  • During this same period, 31 big supermarket chains sought bankruptcy.
  • Walmart now sells more food than any other store in the world.
  • Walmart has approx.3,900 stores in the USA of which 1,906 are super centers; this is 1,000 more than it had five years ago.
  • This year 7.2 billion different purchasing experiences will occur at Walmart stores. (earth's population is approximately 6.5 billion.)
  • 90% of all Americans live within fifteen miles of a Walmart.
You may think that I am complaining, but I am really laying the ground work for suggesting that maybe we should hire the guys who run Walmart to fix the economy. This should be read and understood by all Americans Democrats, Republicans, everyone! To president Obama and all 535 voting members of the legislature; it is now official that the majority of you are corrupt and ineffective. To wit,
  • The U.S. Postal service was established in 1775. You have had 237 years to get it right and it is broke.
  • Social security was established in 1935. You have had 77 years to get it right and it is broke.
  • FannieMae was established in 1938. You have had 74 years to get it right and it is broke.
  • The war on poverty started in 1964. You have had 48 years to get it right; $1 trillion of our money is confiscated each year and transferred to "the poor" and they only want more.
  • Medicare and medicaid were established in 1965. You have had 47 years to get it right and they are broke.
  • FreddieMac was established in 1970. You have had 42 years to get it right and it is broke.
  • The department of energy was created in 1977 to lessen our dependence on foreign oil. It has ballooned to 16,000 employees with a budget of $24 billion a year and we import more oil than ever before. You had 35 years to get it right and it is an abysmal failure.
The reason of course, is that these services are socialistic in nature, not privately run, profit-based enterprises. There is no incentive to become more efficient. In the private sektor, if an enterprise fails to fulfill its mission (i.e., make a profit), it goes broke and goes away. When a public program fails to fulfill its mission, you statists and 'progressives' constantly harp that you just need more money (which government can and will happily print if taxpayers won't cough it up – the resulting inflation is just a hidden tax). But more money will make you less efficient, not more. It has always been thus.

No, you have failed in every "government service" you have shoved down our throats while overspending our tax dollars. And you want Americans to believe you can be trusted with a government-run health care system?!

(Thank you Joan, for sending me this.)

Saturday, October 12, 2013

I Call B.S.!

My Grandfather used to tell me, "If you can't express something numerically, you don't know what you're talking about." I realize that there are exceptions to that rule, in art, music, and other things. But not science. Having said that, read this article posted at the Washington State Department of Ecology website. This is supposed to be an academic article about modeling household water use. I think our taxpayer dollars paid for this.
An Agent Based Model of Household Water Use
Abstract: Households consume a significant fraction of total potable water production. Strategies to improve the efficiency of water use tend to emphasize technological interventions to reduce or shift water demand. Behavioral water use reduction strategies can also play an important role, but a flexible framework for exploring the “what-ifs” has not been available. This paper introduces such a framework, presenting an agent-based model of household water-consuming behavior. The model simulates hourly water-using activities of household members within a rich technological and behavioral context, calibrated with appropriate data. Illustrative experiments compare the resulting water usage of U.S. and Dutch households and their associated water-using technologies, different household types (singles, families with children, and retired couples), different water metering regimes, and educational campaigns. All else equal, Dutch and metered households use less water. Retired households use more water because they are more often at home. Water-saving educational campaigns are effective for the part of the population that is receptive. Important interactions among these factors, both technological and behavioral, highlight the value of this framework for integrated analysis of the human-technology-water system.
Keywords: agent based modeling; behavioral factors; residential water use; buildings
Now, I majored in mathematics in college, so I was naturally intrigued by this piece of crap about halfway through the article:
Other factors affecting the agent decision-making process are water saving campaigns, water metering and household values and resulting norms of acceptable water use behavior. The intention of individual agents to save water in the model is a function of these factors, which can be expressed as follows:
IntentionToSaveWater = a + b + f
where, a = care for environment/10 if water saving campaigns = true otherwise a = 0, b = 0.4 if water meter = true otherwise b = 0 and f = 0.1 is a constant to avoid the value zero as equation outcome. 
Care for the environment divided by ten? Ten exactly? Zero point four? Where do those numbers come from, anyway? The zero point one is an admitted fudge factor just to make the result turn out the way they want. They actually say it! Why does IntentionToSaveWater need to be non-zero anyway? Can't someone intentionally waste water? Believe me, after reading this, I'm tempted. Yeah, it'll cost me, but it might be worth it. I guess I'm not one of the receptive.

Is this hypotheses testable? Peer reviewed? Do we have independently reproducible results? Or is this just more poli-sci, sociology mumbo-jumbo? Those classes were graduation requirements in college, but we hard science and math students used to sit in our dorms, read the textbooks and laugh our keisters off. I sure hope this isn't how they're modeling global warming climate change chaos, but it would not surprise me. This isn't science or mathematics. It's pure B.S.!  Totally made up, and put in the form of an equation to look "scientific". Maybe that'll bluster someone suffering from math anxiety, but as a lifelong student of science, it merely makes me want to puke.

Let me tell you what stuff like this does to my "care for the environment" quotient: It makes me bloody reactionary, is what. It makes me deliberately do things that I would not otherwise do, like burn my paper and cardboard waste in my fireplace (even in summer) just to preserve my sense of self-determination. Not that it really hurts the environment anyway, but I know it would piss off the environmentalists if they found out about it (oops!). You know, water is not destroyed by use. It evaporates and comes right back down as rain. I'm probably drinking some of the same water that was drunk (and peed) by the likes of Jesus H. Christ, or Sir Isaac Newton. (Or Josef Stalin and Sigmund Freud, but I try not to think about that.)

This is what makes me extremely dubious of bureaucracies like EPA and WSDOE. I'm almost certain my tax dollars paid for this tripe. I don't want it, and we don't need it. But it just keeps getting worse. Bureaucracies never look for ways to reduce their budgets, or shrink their scope. Quite the opposite. I for one am getting very tired of it. It's time to curb the bureaucracies!

Need Less Freedom, More Control

I was on facebook the other day, and I became embroiled in a health care discussion. I asked the Pen Gillette question, "Is it possible we can solve this problem with more freedom instead of less?" The answer from the other participants was a resounding, "No, we cannot". They didn't even want to consider free market solutions. They don't understand free market economics 101, or they think the free market has already been tried, and failed. (We haven't had a free market in health care for over half a century, and it's getting less free all the time.*) The other commentators couldn't possibly see how it would even work.

According to them, we need more control and less freedom, and ObamaCare is just the ticket. It's sad, frustrating and frightening. Check it out... There are a few locally well-known names in that discussion. I really had to flap my gums rapidly on this one to un-twist my words, and dodge bullets.

*Is it any surprise the cost is going up? I realize that correlation does not imply causation, but this is an easily testable hypothesis. Hardly anyone wants to test it though.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Letter to Patty and Maria

The following letter was composed by a local resident, name of Bill Schoonover.
April 3, 2013
Senator Patty Murray
Senator Maria Cantwell
Washington, DC, 20510
Dear Senator:
I have tried to live by the rules my entire life. My father was a Command Sergeant Major, U.S. Army, who died of combat related stresses shortly after his retirement. It was he who instilled in me those virtues he felt important - honesty, duty, patriotism and obeying the laws of God and of our various governments. I have served my country, paid my taxes, worked hard, volunteered and donated my fair share of money, time and artifacts.
Today, as I approach my 79th birthday, I am heart-broken when I look at my country and my government. I shall only point out a very few things abysmally wrong which you can multiply by a thousand fold. I have calculated that all the money I have paid in income taxes my entire life cannot even keep the Senate barbershop open for one year! Only Heaven and a few tight-lipped actuarial types know what the Senate dining room costs the taxpayers. So please, enjoy your haircuts and meals on us.
Last year, the president spent an estimated $1.4 billion on himself and his family. The vice president spends $ millions on hotels. They have had 8 vacations so far this year! And our House of Representatives and Senate have become America's answer to the Saudi royal family. You have become the "perfumed princes and princesses" of our country.
In the middle of the night, you voted in the Affordable Health Care Act, a.k.a. "Obama Care," a bill which no more than a handful of senators or representatives read more than several paragraphs, crammed it down our throats, and then promptly exempted yourselves from it, substituting your own taxpayer-subsidized golden health care insurance.
You live exceedingly well, eat and drink as well as the "one percenters," consistently vote yourselves perks and pay raises while making 3.5 times the average U.S. individual income, and give up nothing while you (as well as the president and veep) ask us to sacrifice due to sequestration (for which, of course, you plan to blame the Republicans, anyway).
You understand very well the only two rules you need to know - (1) How to get elected, and (2) How to get re-elected. And you do this with the aid of an eagerly willing and partisan press, speeches permeated with a certain economy of truth, and by buying the votes of the greedy, the ill-informed and under-educated citizens (and non-citizens, too, many of whom do vote) who are looking for a handout rather than a job. Your so-called "safety net" has become a hammock for the lazy. And, what is it now, about 49 or 50 million on food stamps - pretty much all Democratic voters - and the program is absolutely rife with fraud with absolutely no congressional oversight?
I would offer that you are not entirely to blame. What changed you is the seductive environment of power in which you have immersed yourselves. It is the nature of both houses of Congress which requires you to subordinate your virtue in order to get anything done until you have achieved a leadership role. To paraphrase President Reagan, it appears that the second oldest profession (politics), bears a remarkably strong resemblance to the oldest.
As the hirsute first Baron John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton (1834 - 1902), English historian and moralist, so aptly and accurately stated, "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men." I'm only guessing that this applies to the female sex as well. Tell me, is there a more corrupt entity in this country than Congress?
While we middle class people continue to struggle, our government becomes less and less transparent, more and more bureaucratic, and ever so much more dictatorial, using Czars and Secretaries to tell us (just to mention a very few) what kind of light bulbs we must purchase, how much soda or hamburgers we can eat, what cars we can drive, gasoline to use and what health care we must buy. Countless thousands of pages of regulations strangle our businesses costing the consumer more and more every day.
As I face my final year, or so, with cancer, my president and my government tell me "You'll just have to take a pill," while you, Senator, your colleagues, the president, and other exulted government officials and their families will get the best possible health care on our tax dollars until you are called home by your Creator, while also enjoying a retirement beyond my wildest dreams, which of course, you voted for yourselves and we pay for.
The chances of you reading this letter are practically zero as your staff will not pass it on, but with a little luck, a form letter response might be generated by them with an auto signature applied, hoping we will believe that you, our senator or representative, has heard us and actually cares. This letter will, however, go online where many others will have the chance to read one person's opinion, rightly or wrongly, about this government, its administration and its senators and representatives.
I only hope that occasionally you might quietly thank the taxpayer for all the generous entitlements which you have voted yourselves, for which, by law, we must pay, unless, of course, it just goes on the $17 trillion national debt for which your children and ours, and your grandchildren and ours, ad infinitum, must eventually try to pick up the tab.
My final thoughts are that it must take a person who has either lost his or her soul, or conscience, or both, to seek re-election and continue to destroy this country I deeply love and put it so far in debt that we will never pay it off, while your lot improves by the minute, because of your power. For you, Senator, will never stand up to the rascals in your House who constantly deceive the American people. And that, my dear Senator, is how power has corrupted you and the entire Congress. The only answer to clean up this cesspool is term limits. This, of course, will kill the goose that lays your golden eggs. And woe be to him (or her) who would dare to bring it up.
Bill Schoonover

Obama: Make it Hurt!

Executive summary: The regime is scared to death that We the People might discover that we can live without "non essential" government, and demand our money back. So they're making this government shutdown hurt.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Obama Went Freaking Nuts After Being Told “No!”

By Curt Dale

Bobblehead Obama is totally off his meds and having a hissy fit from being defied on his precious Obamacare’s funding. I’ve been looking at the blatantly insane things he’s causing around our nation as he takes the government shutdown to completely unconstitutional, intentionally harmful, logically warped and malicious levels. I’ve been looking for those things that stand out most to me. Only a total imbecile would go to this level of vindictiveness, and that imbecile is the President of the United States. Does Congress share any responsibility for the shutdown of government? Of course! A large number of us see the actions the House took as doing their job. But Obama is at fault and responsible for the beyond-the-pale stupidity we’re seeing blamed on the shutdown. He went nuts on Sequestering, and now he’s in high gear with outrageous actions and trying to blame them on Congress.

Possibly, Obama’s most stupid, yes, stupid, is making the National Park Service tell charter fishing boat captains that they have closed the Florida Bay due to the shutdown. Fishing boats can’t operate here to take fishermen into 1,100 square miles of wide, open ocean during shutdown. He added Biscayne National Park to the same closure. Anglers can’t go out with family and friends to enjoy fishing. The Park Rangers will have to police this area, shooing people out, keeping them from the waters, maybe even arresting them if threats are carried out. During sea survival training, I parachuted into Biscayne Bay and enjoyed the comforts of a tiny one man raft for some 6 hours right in the middle of Biscayne Bay. So, I appreciate the size of even that policing task. Thinking he can keep people out of 1,100 square miles of open ocean in the Keys is akin to early dementia. This effort will take more Park Rangers to police the POTUS ban than would normally be on duty. So, it is a vindictive exercise to “make things as difficult as possible on the people.” Why would I claim that? One Park Ranger supervisor reported that he was told “to make things as difficult as possible” on the people, is guidance issued Rangers by the National Park Service part from the Administration. He also declared, “It’s disgusting.”

We know that he had the World War II Memorial and all the other Memorials on the Washington Mall closed in a fit of pique, only to have WWII Veterans from the Invasion of Normandy cast the barricades aside and go in to see THEIR memorial. Washington Monument, the Vietnam Memorial, the Korean Memorial, Iwo Jima Memorial are barricaded from any entrance by their veterans and dear families. (I love the play on words used by “The Great One,” talk show host, Mark Levin. He said they are “Barrycaded.” How appropriate his coined word! I intend to use his term as it’s so perfectly descriptive of the presidential snit.) I see that not only the WWII Veterans are defying and ignoring the Barrycades. Veterans and visitors are throwing them aside at the Vietnam Memorial (“The Wall”), and at the Korean War Memorial as well, under threat of arrest. Vietnam Veterans and visitors who had knocked the Barrycades aside were escorted out by police, but they immediately went right back in, defying the Barrycades again. Seems there are some patriotic and thinking Americans who know how to lead the charge to defy stupid. Have they decided it isn’t unlawful to defy the unlawful. Is it surprising that many of the brave veteran chucking aside the heinous Barrycades were the ones who charged Normancy, Bastogne, Inchon, Iwo Jima, Guadalcanal, Hue and a long list of other enemy fortresses. Obama even had the American Battle Monuments Commission shut down two dozen US Military cemeteries in foreign nations, and closed all its memorials and monuments. How many family members saved for year and crossed the ocean to visit the grave of their fallen loved one, only to be denied access to salve Barrys EGOBAMA. Does this help Barry feel he “rules the world?” I am in no way surprised at how heavily Obama has targeted the military, past present and future, in his frenzy. I’ve written about his closure of the Military Commissaries. That affects the active duty military, taking money from them by forcing them to buy necessities at higher commercial prices, does the same to military retirees, and depletes the personal funds of both for the future. I thought I knew Obama’s disdain for the military, but these actions go beyond my wildest imagination, and they certainly cement that thought for posterity.

Here’s what he’s doing to Catholic Priests as they attempt to carry out their religious duties for US Military members on bases as reported by John Schlageter, the general counsel for the Archdiocese for the Military Services USA, in an op-ed this week. “With the government shutdown, many [government service] and contract priests who minister to Catholics on military bases worldwide are not permitted to work – not even to volunteer. During the shutdown, it is illegal for them to minister on base and they risk being arrested if they attempt to do so.” Not only did Obama violate First Amendment Rights by impeding the rights of these people to practice their religion in the way they choose, but he violated the right of peaceable assembly for the Veterans and others going to the wartime memorials. Will any future president and administration have the gumption to take him and his cohorts to task for such illegal actions against Americans?

He has had Mt. Vernon, the Plantation home of President George Washington shutdown by having his federal workers close the parking lot, cutting off the privately owned memorial. The federals government merely shares ownership of the parking lot with the private organization that restored, maintains and operates the national treasure. So, Obama’s overbearing directions take precedent in the shared ownership and closes Mt. Vernon to tourists who want to visit there.

We know that the National Parks are closed, as we expected, but closure of these open air Memorials is a display of his incredible dislike for anything patriotic, for the military or even the memory of what heroes of the past have done. I will continue to maintain that Obama wants all adulation, all ceremony, all celebration focused upon him and him alone. His Imperial Presidency is his first priority. He’s willing to make things “as difficult as possible for the people” if they choose to look toward anything else as being more praiseworthy than he. It’s perfectly ok to herd them like cattle, fence them out like livestock, and punish them for any complain against his repressive and costly policies.

I contend that the Republicans, or anyone who is defying Obama on funding Obamacare, are not ultimately responsible for these horrible consequences of this government shutdown. Yes, fundamental things happen in a shutdown, but not the absurdities he has invoked. I’ve lived through many of them. He’s taken what has been a rather orderly, mildly disagreeable process in the past and fomented it into scorched earth vengeance and retribution because his ego is bruised. I hope the thinking people of American can comprehend this fact. And anyone who says, “But he’s not responsible; the government is so big, he couldn’t be responsible for all of this,” I say, “He’s the President. These outlandish slaps in the face are the fruit of his whimsy. Let “Make it as difficult as possible” for the people ring in your ears incessantly. That is Obama’s unalterable, inflexible form of governing. He knows nothing else but force, coercion and blackmail!

Colonel Curtis D. Dale, Ph.D. USAF (Ret)

Petulant, Petty, Vindictive, Unstatesmanlike

Knowledge is Power, over at Sondrakistan posted the following image. See if you can guess what it is.

Cones are shown along the road to Mount Rushmore. The National Parks Service placed the
cones there to prevent viewers from stopping on the side of the road to view the monument.
Seriously? Is this the kind of unstatesmanlike conduct that we can expect from this regime?

Now before you pile on me about the "unstatesmanlike" conduct of the House "Tea Party" Republicans who "caused" this shutdown, let me remind you that many, if not most of those "Tea Party" Republicans were elected with a voter mandate to stop ObamaCare. They are now living up to their campaign promises - albeit much watered down at this point.

Our founders designed the separate branches of government and the bicameral legislature with checks and balances to discourage bad legislation from being enacted. Regardless of which side the issue you're on, or which piece of legislation you think is bad, that's what is happening today. The Constitution may be coughing up blood, but parts of it are still working.

The "Tea Party" Republicans had originally voted to fund all functions of government except ObamaCare. The senate Democrats rejected that out of hand. Now, all the "Tea Party" Republicans are asking is for ObamaCare to be implemented as written, equally for all citizens, with no exceptions. The senate Democrats rejected that out of hand.

The senate Democrats could have accepted either bill to keep the government from shutting down*, and then negotiate to fix whatever issues they have with ObamaCare. This whole thing had the potential of being a positive move for We the People by ironing out the truly bad elements of ObamaCare.

But instead, we get this petulant, vindictive "shut down" of services that require no actual service, limiting access to sites that we own. This isn't The King's Land, after all. This land is your land, this land is my land... This land was made for you and me.

So now, the NIST websites, including time services are closed. Are you kidding me? Those computers don't require any staff to operate them. And I'm pretty sure they're not powered down to save electricity during the "shut down". They're just reprogrammed to cause maximum inconvenience.

Barack Hussein Obama, you're the executive; these are your bureaucracies to manage. They're all closed to the public, but your ObamaCare sites are sort of working. You should be ashamed of yourself.

* Actually government isn't shut down; over 80% of it is still (dys)functioning quite nicely, thank you very much.