How we got into this mess

Signing_of_the_Constitution_of_the_United_StatesSo, just how did we get to where we are today? We have two major political parties that seem to exist for the sole purpose of staying in power. That’s not really anything new, but this year, things seem … different. The number and intensity of people dissatisfied by both the presumptive nominees of the two major parties is greater than I can remember ever happening before.

Now, not everyone is dissatisfied by those expected to get their party’s nomination. Otherwise, they wouldn’t get the nomination. But, many are unhappy. Heck, many are just plain pissed, at the nominees, at their supporters, at the parties, and at the process.

So, how did we get here?

Well, I think it all began in 1804. Let me give the background to that, what happened after, and how that caused what we have today.

The first thing to remember — or learn, if you never knew this — is that the selection of those in government today isn’t exactly how the Founding Fathers set it up. Things changed. The first big change was in 1804. More about that in a minute.

When the Founding Fathers were setting up our Constitution, there was a great disagreement on how to lay out the government. They broke the functions up into three main branches, which we still have today: the Legislative branch, the Executive branch, and the Judicial branch. Let’s start with the Legislative branch.
Continue reading ‘How we got into this mess’ »

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Independence Day 2015

FoundingFathersDeclaration

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes 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 effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

  • He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
  • He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
  • He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
  • He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
  • He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
  • He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
  • He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
  • He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
  • He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
  • He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
  • He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
  • He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
  • He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
    • For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
    • For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
    • For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
    • For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    • For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
    • For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
    • For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
    • For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
    • For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
  • He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
  • He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
  • He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
  • He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
  • He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

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Independence Day 2014

FoundingFathersDeclaration

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes 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 effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

  • He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
  • He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
  • He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
  • He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
  • He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
  • He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
  • He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
  • He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
  • He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
  • He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
  • He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
  • He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
  • He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
    • For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
    • For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
    • For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
    • For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    • For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
    • For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
    • For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
    • For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
    • For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
  • He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
  • He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
  • He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
  • He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
  • He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

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Shutdown!!!1!!!11!

Wow! Shutdown is worse than Sequester.

Wait. Sequester is still going on, right? So we have Sequester AND Shutdown? Arrgghh! How will we survive it?

Already, the moon broke loose from its orbit and is crashing into the sea sometime this afternoon. Plus, in case you missed it, the sun didn’t turn on this morning.

Also, iPhones aren’t working. Android phones, either. Only BlackBerry phones work during Shutdown. Who saw that coming?

Traffic lights are out. Buildings are collapsing. Breaking Bad won’t be airing. It’s pandemonium.

Worst of all, the Internetz are down, and you can’t even read this brilliant post.

What can we do?

Nothing.

You can’t call on the military to defend us as Shutdown roams the streets of America and destroys the pieces of our country that Sequester left standing.

We’re doomed, I tell ya. Doomed.

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Shutdown

GovernmentShutdownSo, the government is gonna shut down?

Maybe.

Hopefully.

Here’s what I don’t understand, though, and I’m hoping some of the smart people around here can explain it to me.

The government doesn’t really shut down. Some of it keeps going. I think they say “essential services” stay running, but a lot of government employees will be sent home, according to news reports:

If Congress fails to fund the federal government by Oct. 1, the start of the new fiscal year, the government will go into partial shutdown. Some government functions – those deemed essential – will continue as usual, while others will be suspended. If a shutdown proceeds the way it would have in 2011 (had the last funding impasse had not been resolved in time), 800,000 of 2.1 million federal employees would be furloughed.

And that’s what I don’t understand. Why is the government doing anything other than essential services in the first place? I mean, if it’s not essential, why is the government doing it?

That’s easy. Because people want you and me to pay for their stuff. It’s totally unreasonable to expect people who want things to actually go out and get a job and buy stuff, when they have the government spending other people’s money to give them things.

Now, the media is gonna play this whole thing as the mean ol’ Republicans — especially those influenced by the Evil Tea Party — not caring for women and babies and such.

But don’t blame the GOP. Or the TEA Party.

Blame me. I’d love to get credit for shutting down non-essential government services. So, if you’re one of those leeches that live off the government and you’re impacted by the shutdown of non-essential services, maybe you’re non-essential.

So go make yourself essential, grow up, and become a productive member of society.

Or be your normal self. As long as the non-essential services aren’t supplying non-essential people with non-essentials, I’m good with it.

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Independence Day 2013

FoundingFathersDeclaration

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes 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 effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

  • He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
  • He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
  • He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
  • He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
  • He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
  • He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
  • He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
  • He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
  • He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
  • He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
  • He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
  • He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
  • He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
    • For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
    • For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
    • For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
    • For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    • For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
    • For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
    • For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
    • For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
    • For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
  • He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
  • He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
  • He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
  • He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
  • He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

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Leash law

Was doing laundry Sunday. Of course, that meant a trip to the laundromat, which meant … Laundromat People.

Now, I fully realize that I’m now one of the Laundromat People, but that just makes me more qualified than others to comment on them.

Let me set the stage. The TV is on De Pelicula, and it’s showing a movie featuring masked Mexican wrestlers, girls in short shorts, and double-south-of-the-border rejects from The Final Sacrifice — complete with hockey hair.

Then, there’s the the kid on a leash running around. Little girl, three years old maybe, that was there with two women (possibly a mother and grandmother, but not sure). This isn’t a debate about putting kids on a leash. I’ll let Erick Erickson deal with that. No, I want to use the kid to make a point.

Now, if you weren’t paying attention, let me say the key part of this again: there’s a kid on a leash running around.

Think about that. If she’s on a leash, how is she running around? No, she’s not dragging the leash behind her. There’s a hand firmly attached to the leash.

No, she’s not leading the mother around. She’s carrying her own leash.

And that’s the problem with the government. We know it needs a leash, but we let it carry its own leash. And, it runs wild.

So, what do we do about it? The government, I mean. Do we grab the leash and hope it doesn’t bite us? (Think: IRS.)

Do we try to cage it?

What do we do about it? ‘Cause I got the feeling it’s sizing us up for something a little more restrictive than a leash.

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Shutdown

One of the things you hear about from time to time are worries about a government shutdown. The Congress and the president always seem to find a way to avoid it. And, those ways always involve increasing the debt.

I got an idea. Let the government shut down.

No, I’m serious.

You see, the government doesn’t really shut down. All but essential services are stopped.

Think about that. Let that sink in.

Essential government services continue.

And that’s the clue to the entire problem: the government is performing non-essential services.

I’ve actually had this discussion with people. When I mention that the government shouldn’t be performing non-essential services, they counter with “Oh, but people are dependent on those services!”

Really. They’re justifying non-essential services by citing people that are so screwed up they can’t survive without them. But here’s the thing: they can. The services are non-essential. That means — and this is the part that so many people don’t seem to grasp — the services are not essential.

Oh, sure, there’ll be problems. But there will be problems anyway. The question is, when is the best time to deal with them: now, while they’re huge. Or later, when they’re even more huge.

Like Sarah Connor said, there’s a storm coming.

Stock up.

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The Best Way to Trim the Fat From Government Spending

A much shorter missive from Hunter, who you may remember from his recent much longer work:
______________

When people try to personify and envision our government in terms other than “Uncle Sam”, they tend NOT to think “Beauty Queen”, or even “Centerfold” despite the appropriate whorish connotation.

They may think of anything from a Bald Eagle, to the Mighty Colossus, to a Big Fat Pig (complete with lipstick), but overall the once-common association with the Many-Headed Hydra has fallen out of general usage. This is a shame really, because if you took a whole nest of Hydrii, several Chimeras, an Artful Dodger or two, and of course “Sybil” (before or after the psychiatric fraud revelation – doesn’t matter which), and went all “Human Centipede” on their collective posteriors (and orifices), you’d get a monster that seasoned and concerned government watchers would find both horrifying and hauntingly familiar.

We don’t simply need to cut out “all the fat”.

We also need to carve out most of the muscle and a majority of the bones just to get back to the “Dangerously Fit and Trim, Many-Headed Hydra” stage.

Sadly, this is a dragon we can neither slay, nor allow to self-cannibalize.

But returning it to its Constitutional cage would be a great start.
______________

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Smelly candles, plastic flowers, and scratching posts

So, now the big news is that it looks like the government might shut down. Like that’s a bad thing.

All this time, those of us on the right have been complaining about the size of government. Now, it might shut down. And I say “Good!” It could use a good shutting down.

Only, the government really won’t shut down.

“National parks, national forests and the Smithsonian Institution would all be closed. The NIH Clinical Center will not take new patients, and no new clinical trials will start,” he added in a roll call of expected agency closings.

But the air traffic control system would stay up and running, the emergency management agency would still respond to natural disasters and border security would not be affected.

That means that the government will still operate to some degree, but non-essential personnel will be sent home:

…John Gage, president of the American Federation of Government Employees, the largest federal employee union… (said) “Employees are apparently going to be told to report to work Monday (then) they will be released, and those who are nonessential, nonexempt will be released and the other ones will be told to stay.”

What’s all this mean?

It means that those of us on the right were right all along. The government is full of people whose jobs aren’t necessary. And they don’t even know who they are.

There are too many non-essentials when the economy is good and the government isn’t running a deficit. It’s even worse during this Obama economy.

There’s word that some military might not get paid. Which means what? That the Obama administration considers them non-essential? That sounds like a bunch of stupid liberals. Gotta fund those abortion clinics, but not so much the American soldier.

The military is one of the essentials. But there are plenty of non-essentials in the government today.

Now, I don’t think that non-essentials are necessarily a bad thing. I’m sitting at a computer right now. Not the cheapest computer, either. I spent around $3,000 for this MacBook Pro. That’s a lot of money. And, I could have made do with a $400 Dell, I suppose.

And, looking around the room, I see a fish tank. We don’t eat the fish, so it’s non-essential. There are some trinkets on the coffee table and shelves. Some plastic flowers. A Rubik’s Cube (what’s that doing on the coffee table?). Candles. A scratching post for the cat.

Non-essentials.

In tough times, we wouldn’t have all them.

And that’s what the government is full of: non-essentials.

Lots of people who work for the government are trinkets and plastic flowers. Some are smelly candles.

The military is more like the doors, walls, shotguns, and such: they protect us and keep us safe. Not a whole lot of smelly candles and plastic flowers there.

For the U.S. to come out ahead on this, they need to send the non-essentials home. And leave them there. Let the non-essentials get a real job.

Oh, sure, there are lots of people out of work right now. Non-essentials.

I’m not saying they aren’t qualified. I’m saying their job wasn’t needed when they lost it.

I don’t mind so much when business hires non-essentials. They are in the business to make money. And, when they make money, they have more money to spend on the non-essential jobs. Which, after a while of being done exceptionally, gets more focus and becomes essential.

The government, not so much. The business world is hurting because it has to cut non-essentials while the government keeps the plastic flowers and scratching posts on the payroll.

The government should get rid of all those smelly candles and plastic flowers. Then, they wouldn’t spend so much money.

And you could have more smelly candles, plastic flowers, and scratching posts.

Personally, I don’t care about smelly candles, plastic flowers, and scratching posts. Wife likes them, though. And things are better when she’s happy.

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