July 5, 2015

When, in the course of human events… [McGehee]

Some thoughts I’ve been having about a document lately of interest…

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.

What the Declaration is, is a petition for divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences. It converted the armed insurrection in the colonies into a War for Independence — a war to secede from the British Empire.

Today it is commonplace to be told there are no rights to revolution, nor to secede — that any question about a right to secede was settled by Union victory in the Civil War. Yet the existence of the United States is a prima facie rebuke to that argument. The Union could not by force of arms annihilate that very resort that created it. A man might as well claim that by killing his pregnant sister he proved he did not gestate in, and emerge from, his mother’s womb.

There are reasons why it was good that the Continentals won their war for independence, and there are reasons why it is good that the Confederacy did not win theirs — but the claim of a right to secede from a parent government cannot stand unqualified as a reason in favor of one and against the other. If the Confederacy was wrong about this in the 1860s, the Continentals must also have been wrong about it 90 years earlier. And the Continentals were not wrong.

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.

In this day and age one of the concepts we most urgently need to stress is the unalienability of true rights; they are neither granted nor subject to removal by the State at whim.

It’s also important to note that the rights explicitly named are “among” the unalienable rights with which we are endowed. This makes it clear that the listing is incomplete. As broad as “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” may seem, the members of the Continental Congress that adopted this declaration were quite comfortable with the idea that the rights to which we are entitled, by sole virtue of our humanity, extend even further.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,

Governments are instituted not to grant rights, but merely to secure those which we already have.

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.

More right to revolution — and here is explicitly described the overthrow of a delegitimized government, rather than merely the removal of a portion of its people from its reach. Here the Declaration lays out a basis whereby the people of Great Britain, had they deemed it necessary, could have overthrown the House of Hanover — if not the monarchy itself. The armed overthrow of a sitting monarch is a common theme in British history, while the outright overthrow of the monarchy had only happened once, but more recently to those alive in 1776 than 1776 is to us in 2015.

What follows in the Declaration is the listing of grounds for the divorce being sought. I’ve seen a lot of comparisons over the last 20 years or so between that listing and the sorts of things our own federal government has done; anyone who would like to reprise such a comparison can certainly do so — personally, I think we’re past the point of needing to.

The government schools have failed to teach the founding documents effectively. If you are a Christian who feels called to witness for Christ, you can understand when I say we all need to witness for our constitutional republic. If you are not one of those Christians, this is your chance to understand their calling.

Posted by McGehee @ 4:05pm
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July 5, 2015

2015 Darwin nominee “blank the alligators” [Darleen Click] UPDATED

Talk about famous last words

Investigators, a w.itness and friends are revealing the harrowing accounts of the first recorded fatal alligator attack in Texas and more about the victim.

A justice of the peace tells KFDM News Tommie Woodward, 28, is from St. Louis, but moved to Orange with his twin brother. He’s worked in the shipyards the past few years.

“One minute he’s there and then the next minute he’s gone,” Michelle Wright said.

What started as a night of fun at Burkhart’s Marina in Orange ended with the fatal attack early Friday morning.

“I asked him please do not go swimming, there’s a bigger alligator out here, just please stay out of the water,” Wright, an employee at the restaurant, said.

Workers report they spotted a ten-foot gator in the waters of Adams Bayou this week, prompting them to post a warning sign reading “No Swimming Alligators.”

Investigators said Woodward didn’t pay attention to the posted warnings and pleas from Wright.

“He said blank the alligators and thereupon jumped into the water,” Orange County Justice of the Peace Rodney Price said.

Price said the 28-year old was almost immediately attacked

*********************************************
UPDATE

I don’t believe the word “accident” quite fits

A 22-year-old man died on Saturday night in Maine as a result of a fireworks accident on the Fourth of July, officials said.

Devon Staples, 22, was killed instantly in Calais, Maine, after he put a fireworks mortar on his head, marking the first death since the state legalized fireworks two years ago, NBC-affiliate WCSH6 reports. Staples had been drinking with friends when the incident occurred at approximately 10 p.m. ET, according to Maine Public Safety spokesperson Steve McCausland.

Posted by Darleen @ 9:41am
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July 5, 2015

Sunday post-holiday morning music video [Darleen Click]

Posted by Darleen @ 8:44am
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July 4, 2015

Happy 4th of July [Darleen Click]

To the country as created by the Founders, the country as it should be, the country we need to rediscover.

Posted by Darleen @ 8:16am
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July 3, 2015

Shorter George Takei: “My intent isn’t racist when I call Clarence Thomas an inauthentic black man.” [Darleen Click]

George Takei had a melt-down over Judge Thomas’ dissent the other day with a deliberate misreading of how Thomas uses the word “dignity”

In a nasty, racist rant captured by a Fox affiliate in Arizona, former Star Trek actor-turned-gay rights activist George Takei lashed out at Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, calling him a “clown in black face.”

Takei’s explosive verbal diarrhea, which can be witnessed in full here courtesy of Newsbusters, was prompted by Thomas’ dissent to the Supreme Court’s Obergefell ruling which declared gay marriage to be a fundamental right protected by the Constitution. Here is the excerpt of Thomas’ dissent that led to Takei’s meltdown:

Human dignity has long been understood in this country to be innate. When the Framers proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence that “all men are created equal” and “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,” they referred to a vision of mankind in which all humans are created in the image of God and therefore of inherent worth. That vision is the foundation upon which
this Nation was built.

The corollary of that principle is that human dignity cannot be taken away by the government. Slaves did not lose their dignity (any more than they lost their humanity) because the government allowed them to be enslaved. Those held in internment camps did not lose their dignity because the government confined them. And those denied governmental benefits certainly do not lose their dignity because the government denies them those benefits. The government cannot bestow dignity, and it cannot take it away.

George transported himself over a whole shark-infested solar system to read that as denying the indignity of the institution of slavery.

He is a clown in black face sitting on the Supreme Court. He gets me that angry. He doesn’t belong there. And for him to say, slaves have dignity. I mean, doesn’t he know that slaves were in chains? That they were whipped on the back. If he saw the movie 12 Years a Slave, you know, they were raped. And he says they had dignity as slaves or – My parents lost everything that they worked for, in the middle of their lives, in their 30s. His business, my father’s business, our home, our freedom and we’re supposed to call that dignified? Marched out of our homes at gun point. I mean, this man does not belong on the Supreme Court. He is an embarrassment. He is a disgrace to America.

Today, after being subjected to a lot of criticism (though, not from the “mainstream” media which has chosen to ignore Takei’s racist rant cuz Gay Democrat), he has decided to double-down

I was struck in particular by the dissent of Justice Clarence Thomas, who focused his argument on the notion that the Constitution does not grant liberty or dignity, but rather operates to restrain government from abridging it. To him, the role of the government is solely to let its citizens be, for in his view it cannot supply them any more liberty

Really, George, reading-is-fundamental…

or dignity than that with which they are born.

This position led him to the rather startling conclusion that “human dignity cannot be taken away.”

Why is that “startling”? Thomas takes the position that dignity and HUMANITY is inherent in the individual. That is the one of the main arguments against slavery. But, whatever, George is busy here

A few fans have written wondering whether I intended to utter a racist remark by referring to Justice Thomas as a “clown in blackface.”

“Blackface” is a lesser known theatrical term for a white actor who blackens his face to play a black buffoon. In traditional theater lingo, and in my view and intent, that is not racist. It is instead part of a racist history in this country.

I feel Justice Thomas has abdicated and abandoned his African American heritage by claiming slavery did not strip dignity from human beings. He made a similar remark about the Japanese American internment, of which I am a survivor. A sitting Justice of the Supreme Court ought to know better.

Yes, George gayslained, I can judge Thomas a race-traitor and a black buffoon by deliberately rewriting Thomas’ intent and writing, but don’t you dare question my intent.

I’d like to point out to George the First Rule of Holes, but he’d probably interpret that as a homophobic h8r slur.

Posted by Darleen @ 11:11am
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July 3, 2015

Turns out there’s not too long a Trek from Lib activist to racist

Who knew?

Of course, if you’re a “progressive,” there’s a perfectly good reason why you can misrepresent a court opinion in order to call its author “a clown in blackface” and not be deemed “racist”: BECAUSE SHUT UP, RIGHT WING HATERS!

Up is down. Black is white. Bridget killed Bernie in his sleep by puncturing his throat with a rusty IUD.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 10:56am
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July 3, 2015

YOU WILL BE MADE TO CARE: Oregon couple ordered to shut up about same-sex wedding cakes [Darleen Click]

Not only were the Kleins fined $135,000 for the “emotional distress” they caused a lesbian couple when the Kleins declined to bake a cake, when the Kleins expressed their opinion on the case in an interview, Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian ordered them to “cease and desist” from ever talking about not providing same-sex weddings cakes.

Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian finalized a preliminary ruling today ordering Aaron and Melissa Klein, the bakers who refused to make a cake for a same-sex wedding, to pay $135,000 in emotional damages to the couple they denied service.

“This case is not about a wedding cake or a marriage,” Avakian wrote. “It is about a business’s refusal to serve someone because of their sexual orientation. Under Oregon law, that is illegal.”

In the ruling, Avakian placed an effective gag order on the Kleins, ordering them to “cease and desist” from speaking publicly about not wanting to bake cakes for same-sex weddings based on their Christian beliefs.

“This effectively strips us of all our First Amendment rights,” the Kleins, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, which has since closed, wrote on their Facebook page. “According to the state of Oregon we neither have freedom of religion or freedom of speech.”

Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian finalized a preliminary ruling today ordering Aaron and Melissa Klein, the bakers who refused to make a cake for a same-sex wedding, to pay $135,000 in emotional damages to the couple they denied service.

“This case is not about a wedding cake or a marriage,” Avakian wrote. “It is about a business’s refusal to serve someone because of their sexual orientation. Under Oregon law, that is illegal.”

In the ruling, Avakian placed an effective gag order on the Kleins, ordering them to “cease and desist” from speaking publicly about not wanting to bake cakes for same-sex weddings based on their Christian beliefs.

“This effectively strips us of all our First Amendment rights,” the Kleins, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, which has since closed, wrote on their Facebook page. “According to the state of Oregon we neither have freedom of religion or freedom of speech.”

The cease and desist came about after Aaron and Melissa Klein participated in an interview with Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins. During the interview, Aaron said among other things, “This fight is not over. We will continue to stand strong.”

Lawyers for plaintiffs, Rachel and Laurel Bowman-Cryer, argued that in making this statement, the Kleins violated an Oregon law banning people from acting on behalf of a place of public accommodation (in this case, the place would be the Kleins’ former bakery) to communicate anything to the effect that the place of public accommodation would discriminate. […]

The Kleins’ lawyer, Anna Harmon, was shocked by the provision.

“Brad Avakian has been outspoken throughout this case about his intent to ‘rehabilitate’ those whose beliefs do not conform to the state’s ideas,” she told The Daily Signal. “Now he has ruled that the Kleins’ simple statement of personal resolve to be true to their faith is unlawful. This is a brazen attack on every American’s right to freely speak and imposes government orthodoxy on those who do not agree with government sanctioned ideas.”

And that is the whole point.

Posted by Darleen @ 10:02am
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July 3, 2015

Friday Fiction: 100 Word Challenge [Darleen Click]

The inspiration:

100wordcreation2

A story:

Each day they went about their chores, the driving value of each action – “purpose.”

He arrived in The Community and they thought him odd. He would wander the fields gazing at the sky.

“Why?” they would ask.

“Because it’s beautiful.”

They would go away confused.

He became focused on an activity, shaping, molding, sculpting.

Ah! They thought. Finally! Purpose!

“No. Because it’s beautiful.”

In spite of themselves they gathered and watched, first curious (that was a new emotion) then in awe at what was taking shape.

He leaned over, blew into his creation, and it stirred.

He smiled, “Adam.”

******************************************************

Now, your turn.

Posted by Darleen @ 12:30am
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July 2, 2015

Chicago Democrats — “You’re amused? We’re gonna tax that!” [Darleen Click]

From the city that taught everything Obama knows about thuggery

Netflix service in Chicago is about to get notably more expensive. On the hunt for new revenue, Chicago’s Department of Finance is applying two new rules that would impact companies like Netflix and Spotify. One covers “electronically delivered amusements” and another covers “nonpossessory computer leases”; together they form a unique and troubling new attempt by cities to tax any city resident that interacts with “the cloud”. According to the Chicago Tribune, streaming service providers need to start collecting the tax starting September 1.

No fun for you without paying us!

8. The amusement tax applies to charges paid for the privilege to witness, view or participate in an amusement. This includes not only charges paid for the privilege to witness,view or participate in amusements in person but also charges paid for the privilege to witness,view or participate in amusements that are delivered electronically. Thus:

a. charges paid for the privilege of watching electronically delivered television shows, movies or videos are subject to the amusement tax, if the shows, movies or videos are delivered to a patron (i.e., customer) in the City (see paragraph 13 below);

b. charges paid for the privilege of listening to electronically delivered music are subject to the amusement tax, if the music is delivered to a customer in the City; and

c. charges paid for the privilege of participating in games, on-line or otherwise, are subject to the amusement tax if the games are delivered to a customer in the City.The customer will normally receive the provider’s electronic communications at a television,radio, computer, tablet, cell phone or other device belonging to the customer.

9. Providers who receive charges for electronically delivered amusements are owners or operators and are required to collect the City’s amusement tax from their Chicago customers.See paragraphs 13 and 14 below. As of the date of this ruling, the rate of the tax is 9% of the charges paid.

It is who they are, it is what they do.

(PS Here’s a suggestion for Netflix … stop streaming to all Chicago customers on 9/1.)

Posted by Darleen @ 6:00pm
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July 2, 2015

Unwarranted bleg

Hello, all. I’m not going to beat around the bush: I really want to raise the money for a Golden Tee home edition to help finish off my basement. I don’t deserve a cent from any of you, and I’m not going to pretend that any contributions you give are in direct support of pw. They’d be in direct support of an overpriced video game.

That said, I still really want the damn thing. It helps me relax and clear my head.

So if you want to contribute, cool. If not, cool. You’re still welcome here. Unless you’re a baked cod fish. Then you’re just a fucking interloper who hasn’t much of a life to speak of — and you’re here because, well, what else have you got going on? Plus, you make me throw up a little in my mouth every time you belch up your latest iteration of my supposed absence of social worth, so thick and wretched is the projection therein.

Thanks in advance.

Posted by Jeff G. @ 9:19am
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