Category Archives: News of the day

Mr Levin protecting the sheeple

When I was a young teenager I attended a small Southern church with Pentecostal leanings, my “little experiment” with Christianity.  My best friend at the time happened to be a Catholic and one weekend that she was spending with me I suggested we attend the church.

Not having been raised in any sort of religion, and not having any real experience with the differences between Christian denominations and the sometimes strong feelings of disapproval for “the others,” I was completely taken aback when told that she was not allowed to attend a church of a different denomination.  I may have been taken aback by the “not allowed” but I was stunned and bewildered to learn that it would be a “sin” for her to do so.

I thought about all of that and the confusion I felt at the time when I read the AP piece on Breitbart Foes of tea party movement to infiltrate rallies.

[...]Jason Levin, creator of http://www.crashtheteaparty.org, said Monday the group has 65 leaders in major cities across the country who are trying to recruit members to infiltrate tea party events for April 15—tax filing day, when tea party groups across the country are planning to gather and protest high taxes.

“Every time we have someone on camera saying that Barack Obama isn’t an American citizen, we want someone sitting next to him saying, ‘That’s right, he’s an alien from outer space!’” Levin said.

[...]Levin says they want to exaggerate the group’s least appealing qualities, further distance the tea party from mainstream America and damage the public’s opinion of them. [Emphasis added]

How very like the Catholic church of my long ago best friend.  Mustn’t allow the exposure of “the flock” to a message that might be counter to approved dogma.  Not only is hearing a message from “the other” to be discouraged, it must be demonized.  “The Flock” must be convinced that the “teachings of the other” is a vile and defiling thing to be shunned for fear of “infection.”

Mr. Levin’s own little Grand Inquisition.  He has determined the “truth” and he wishes to do his part to make sure anyone who doesn’t believe the same “truth” is viewed as heretical — even if he has to manufacture the “evidence.”  Also not unlike the Catholic Church of old in its pursuit of heretical thinkers.  All in the name of “protecting” those deemed too stupid to be trusted to judge the truth for themselves… or come to it upon fair and informed consideration.

If I were a Democrat or Liberal I would be highly insulted by Mr. Levin’s assumptions.  By his actions and planned actions he is saying to all the world that Democrats and Liberals are too stupid to risk being exposed to what he views as heresy.  He doesn’t want any of the flock lost.  A “good shepherd” protects the flock…or the sheeple…

… just ask the Catholic church.

Ultimately, Mr. Levin is doing the Tea Party a favor.  You see, there are a few that have been drawn to the Tea Party that are a liability to its image when it comes to building a movement large enough to be the force that shapes the political future over the next few years.  Now, with Mr. Levin and his “leaders”… eh… fellow sheeple shepherds…. it will be all the easier to dismiss and distance that small element, because now we will always be able to say: It’s not the Tea Party [and, it really isn't] it’s Mr. Levin and gang if or when someone’s political passions are displayed in anything other than 100% political correctness.

Honestly, I didn’t give the crash the tea party website any credence when I first came upon it.  I figured it was actually a Tea Partier showing a bit of pro-active imagination by laying the groundwork for a convenient place to point a finger.  It’s kinda funny when you think about it: a Tea Partier pretending to be an activist pretending to be a Tea Partier.

It’s going to be very interesting in the political arena the next two years.

A timely reminder from Ronald Reagan

I will admit up front that when I first read the headline on Drudge “Oklahoma ‘tea parties’ and lawmakers envision militia…” I had a genuine OMG moment.  I rapidly read through the article waiting to find the point at which it would become clear that the headline was just an attention getting mischaracterization.  I didn’t find that point.  The headline accurately reflected the news within the article.

I finished reading and then set my laptop aside, somewhat stunned and thinking, “just coz you CAN do something, doesn’t mean you SHOULD do it.”  Well, that’s the cleaned up version of what I was thinking.

Then it struck me…

Hey, a goodly many of those Presidential Executive Orders our presidents affix their signatures to are for those “just in case” things that we all hope will NEVER happen.  But, IF they DO happen, well, it’s a GOOD thing those EOs exist, or, that’s the theory anyway.  That’s what some in Oklahoma are wanting to explore: the concept and viability of a state militia for that “just in case” moment in time should our federal government go completely over the edge.  Some would even say we stand at that threshold already.

As it happens, my Amazon delivery today brought Matthrew Spalding’s We Still Hold These Truths: Rediscovering Our Principles, Reclaiming Our Future, it’s opening quote is as follows:

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction.  We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream.  It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States when men were free.”  — Ronald Reagan

… It must be fought for…

… It must be protected…

… It must be handed on…

How fitting that Ronald Reagan’s words [via Matthew Spalding] came to me only minutes before the AP news item.

Upon a bit of reflection I find a lot to admire in the concept exploration going on in Oklahoma, even if I started at OMG! I’m sure the good folk doing the “exploring” had no need to read President Reagan’s words and I’m more than a little embarrassed that I did.

When what’s mine is yours

April 15th – “Tax Day” is only a few days away.  The day I despise my government, irrespective of the party in power.  Don’t get me wrong, I believe there are legitimate functions of the federal government and as such I have a moral obligation to pay my taxes, and pay them I do – every year.  I just get angry because the the federal government has decided it has a right to so much of my money.

Yet, for all the money the government demands from me and the other (dwindling) net tax payers, my country finds itself over twelve trillion dollars in debt.  There is not a single reason we have twelve trillion dollars of debt, nor a single party responsible.  It’s all too easy to spend money that is not your own, trebly so if you only have to demand more to get more.

Perhaps because it is almost Tax Day this Associated Press article inspired more than a few rude thoughts to tumble around my brain…

Nearly half of US households escape fed income tax

Recession, new tax credits have nearly half of US households paying no federal income tax
Stephen Ohlemacher, Associated Press Writer, On Wednesday April 7, 2010

About 47 percent will pay no federal income taxes at all for 2009. Either their incomes were too low, or they qualified for enough credits, deductions and exemptions to eliminate their liability.

[...]a tax system that exempts almost half the country from paying for programs that benefit everyone, including national defense, public safety, infrastructure and education.

Beyond the obvious, there are a couple of things wrong with this.

I would assign the most egregious to the simple fact that if it’s not your money being spent you don’t care where or how it’s being spent as long as you get your “Fair Share“… of the government’s tit.  Said another way, if you don’t pay any net federal taxes, do you care if the federal government gives away several billions of dollars to study the impact of “climate change” on the wood frog? I made that up… I have no idea how much the federal government has awarded in grants to study the effects of climate change on the wood frog, though I have no doubt that it has awarded grants for such a “study.”  My point is that if it’s not your money you aren’t going to care.  In fact, you might even find that to be a praise worthy way to spend tax payer funds.

The next in line of egregiousness is that old adage “If it’s free it has no value.” Or, to update the concept in 21st century terms: “Free is too expensive“.  I don’t believe it’s a coincidence that so many of our own citizens view the United States as the embodiment of evil and the source of all that is wrong in the world today.  Far too many people have no “pride of ownership” when it comes to the United States.  Is the US perfect?  No.  Not by any stretch of the imagination.  But even granting that, there is not another country that I would rather live in… or emulate.  And, there is plenty to take pride in… even with all of her faults.

Lastly, beyond that “obvious” I mentioned above, is that it is just plain wrong to take something from me and give it to someone else without my express and willing consent.

[...]The bottom 40 percent, on average, make a profit from the federal income tax, meaning they get more money in tax credits than they would otherwise owe in taxes. For those people, the government sends them a payment.

Would I feel the same way if I didn’t have to pay federal taxes?  Probably not.  If I was a member of the “takers” I would probably think I deserved more… and more… and ever more from those who are forced to give.  And there resides the most egregious wrong.  When the day comes that the “takers” outnumber the “givers” this country dies.  Politicians will be in the business of buying votes instead of safeguarding the American Experiment.

Oh wait

They already are.  They just won’t have to work as hard at it.