The culture of death strikes again

By Cathy Keim

As Michael has mentioned already, #ProtestPP is having another nationwide protest on April 23, 2016, to keep attention on Planned Parenthood’s disgusting practice of harvesting baby parts from the babies aborted in their facilities. The protests are also to bring attention to the indictment of the undercover citizen journalist that made the videos exposing PP, David Daleiden, by the Harris County, Texas, District Attorney Devon Anderson. I covered that miscarriage of justice here.

Now there is even more reason to protest because David Daleiden’s home in California was raided on the orders of California Attorney General Kamala Harris.

On Tuesday, in what appears to be a politically motivated move, officials from Harris’s office raided the home of David Daleiden, the undercover investigator who exposed Planned Parenthood’s trafficking of aborted babies’ body parts. These officials took personal property from Daleiden – including camera equipment and copies of unreleased Planned Parenthood videos.

As was the case with Harris County DA Devon Anderson, it turns out the AG Kamala Harris has received campaign contributions from pro-abortion entities. Kamala Harris is currently running for the US Senate.

Also according to LifeNews, California Planned Parenthood organizations and their board members have contributed $81,000 to Harris’s election campaigns, both for Attorney General and her current campaign for a U.S. Senate seat.

David Daleiden worked for three years to expose Planned Parenthood’s nationwide racket to profit from the babies that they murder in their facilities. His videos showed that not only was PP selling the baby parts for profit, but that they were illegally changing the abortion procedure to obtain more profitable parts to sell. Instead of prosecuting PP for their illegal activities and making efforts to protect the women being subjected to altered abortion processes, the DA and AG have gone after the man who exposed the illegal activity.

If David Daleiden had been a whistleblower exposing corruption in any other industry, he would be hailed as a hero. However, since he is a Christian seeking to protect unborn babies, the political regime in place is seeking to crush him. Every citizen should be appalled at the overreach and abuse of power exhibited by the government officials in their attack on free speech, freedom of the press and our guarantee of equal protection under the law.

Increasingly our government is acting as Leviathan to crush all resistance rather than acting according to the will of the people. None of us has the ability to resist the power that the government can exert by using our own taxpayer funded entities against us.

David Daleiden has been indicted, had his home raided, and his personal property confiscated. How long is it before his taxes are audited? I am sure that the IRS would love to bring a good dose of their terror to the mix.

Go here to find the #ProtestPP location nearest to you. (Editor’s note: By my count there are 200 to choose from, even in locations without PP offices.) Join us as we let our voices be heard while we still can.

This kind of abuse by government officials is to teach the rest of us a lesson and to scare us into conforming to their rules. If we silence ourselves because of fear, then the abusive officials will continue to overreach their authority.

I am not a huge Ayn Rand fan, but she did get this right:

We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force.

Everyone of us breaks a myriad of government laws, regulations, or rules every day. The government has become so large that no one can possibly avoid doing something wrong. When you file your taxes you just hope that you or your accountant got everything correct. If you own a business, you are just one regulatory agency visit away from disaster.

You can be sure that if the decision is made to go after you because you annoyed a government official by being pro-life or Christian or pro-traditional marriage or maybe you spoke out on immigration, or opined that the safety of children requires that the transgender laws be blocked, then the government can make your life very difficult. In fact, that is the root of political correctness: fear of social shaming or worse for not conforming to the standard position on any of the many topics that the elites have deemed sacred.

This has reached the ridiculous point where Attorney General Loretta Lynch told the Senate Judiciary Committee in March, 2016 that “not only has she discussed internally the possibility of pursuing civil actions against so-called ‘climate change deniers,'” but she has “referred it to the FBI to consider whether or not it meets the criteria for which we could take action.”

Lynch is apparently following the lead of Harris and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, “both of whom have opened up investigations of ExxonMobil for allegedly lying to the public and their shareholders about climate change.”

Ah, the absurdity! But notice that California Attorney General Kamala Harris is in on this game. Harris is exhibiting a contempt for the citizen once again by using the power of the government to terrorize by way of investigating corporations for conducting their business.

Today, David Daleiden and Big Oil. Tomorrow it may be you!

WCRC meeting – August 2013

In what turns out to be the second of three consecutive club meetings featuring a gubernatorial candidate, a packed room enjoyed the presentation from Charles Lollar. While Lollar hasn’t formally announced – one item he mentioned was that this area will be part of his bus tour on September 5 – it’s clear he’s intending to run for the GOP nomination.

So, as is our usual custom with visiting dignitaries who travel from afar, once we got through the Lord’s Prayer, Pledge of Allegiance, and introduced our other distinguished guests we turned the meeting over to Charles, who brought his wife Rosha along.

Lollar started right out by telling those gathered it was “awesome” we began with the Lord’s Prayer. (It’s actually something I believe our late former president George Ossman started. We later paid tribute to George, who passed away last week and was remembered as “a great Republican and club member,” with a moment of silence.) Charles continued on that point, saying that religion was the fabric of our nation, He also contended that the political process of late was one of deciding between whether our rights derived from God or were passed along by mankind, “If you think our rights are from men, don’t vote for me,” said Lollar. “Rights and liberties…come from the Creator of our universe.”

Charles pondered what could happen next year given three items: the new majority of local elected officials statewide who belong to the Republican Party, the impact of fights over state Constitutional amendments such as the one permitting gay marriage, and the influence of conservative Democrats in rural areas upset about the current administration’s efforts to instill draconian gun control measures.

But Lollar urged those attending to gather as much information as they could before making a decision on the gubernatorial race. For his part, Charles claimed “we will represent you well…when you run your campaign from here,” pointing to his heart.

In going over some of his qualifications, LtCol Select Lollar pointed to his service in the Marines as a leader of men as well as the turnaround he worked at Cintas, taking a division lagging in the bottom 15% of the company and transforming it into a top five percent outfit. “I’m a completely boring person (in my personal life)…but I understand money (and) leadership,” Lollar said. He repeated the case later: “I have more leadership experience than all of them.” referring to all those running for the state’s top office.

Regarding social issues, Charles made the point that he would be “elected as governor, not priest.” That’s not to say he’s not a social conservative, but his focus would be on the fiscal side. “We’re in it until the budget is balanced,” promised Lollar.

Charles brought up a fantastic point, stating that a significant portion of the state’s budget came from the federal government and because of that Washington controls much of what our state government does. He gave the example of a western state which enacted an 80 MPH speed limit until they were threatened with the loss of federal highway funds, at which time they reverted back to the standard 65 MPH. (Pity.) The states lose their ability to govern themselves when federal funding becomes a significant part of their budget, he added.

One solution he advocated was a taxpayer’s bill of rights (or TABOR law) like Colorado adopted some years ago. Simply put, a TABOR law means annual spending can only be increased by the sum of percentage of population growth plus the rate of inflation. For example, in FY2012 Maryland’s population grew by 0.8% while inflation was measured in 2012 at 1.7 percent. Thus, the maximum budget increase allowed by law would be 2.5 percent. (In reality, Maryland’s budget grew just over 4 percent. Had the TABOR been in effect, Maryland taxpayers would have saved roughly $650 million this year.)

In answering questions, Charles explained how he could run despite the Hatch Act (he is now a reservist, not on active duty), deferred on a lieutenant governor choice by stating “we are strongly considering and praying” about who the person would be, but wishing to get the campaign off the ground first, and noted his “concern” about cancelling out loyal Republican votes in an open primary.

But one questioner seemed to catch Charles off guard a little bit, if only because he may not be familiar with Mark Levin’s recent book. Once explained briefly, Lollar opined it “sounds like something I would agree with.”

And there was the obvious ask: how do you win in minority areas? Charles noted he didn’t need to win outright, and victory was possible with just 35% in those areas (knowing he’ll roll up sizable majorities in places like Wicomico County.) But he’s been active there, and while there are some who he knows won’t be receptive to his message, he’s going at these communities with the statement that “the best entitlement program is a job.”

Finally, it was noted that with the recent endorsement from Blaine Young, the Frederick County Commission president would be an honorary chairman of Lollar’s campaign.

With that, we returned to the usual order of business, with the minutes being read, treasurer’s report given, and Jackie Wellfonder introducing another former WCRC leader who would promote her event later.

Giving his Central Committee report, county chair Dave Parker conceded, “it’s been a hard week.” Parker pointed out the “assault” on State Senator Rich Colburn by the Daily Times – an article which aroused one supporter to warn “we can’t let them get away with this” and call on the group to burn up the editor’s phone lines starting at 8:30 the next morning – and the circus surrounding the District 36 seat. He said he had personally spoken to Diana Waterman, who denied any allegations of impropriety, but still believed the “state level was doing its best to self-destruct.”

And after bringing up the upcoming events of the WCRC Crab Feast on September 7 (contact me for tickets, by the way – I still have a few left to sell) and our next Central Committee meeting on September 9th, he urged those in attendance to consider joining the Central Committee next year. There will likely be turnover, and “we need some troublemakers” on the Central Committee, said Dave.

The aforementioned WCRC president, E. Dee Monnen (who I referred to last week) was promoting the upcoming First District Bull Roast on September 21 in Queen Anne’s County. Unfortunately, she could not secure a local bus for the event but still urged us to attend and show support for our GOP candidates, including Andy Harris.

Also speaking on behalf of Harris, Shawn Jester added that he was pleased with the Fruitland town hall turnout of over 100 people.

We also heard from District 38C candidate Mary Beth Carozza, who gave kudos to those running the Wicomico Farm and Home Show. (I credited my volunteers; they did most of the hard work. All I did was badger them a few times and bring the big red bin of Central Committee stuff I now need to go through.) She was planning to attend a now-scrubbed legislative hearing on onerous state regulations on the poultry industry as well as visit with the Rural Maryland Council.

And while the Colburn supporter was stating her case against the Daily Times, one observer believed the Senator indeed exhibited “poor judgment” with these expenditures. Personally, I’m hoping they check into the campaign finances of some on the other side of the aisle just as closely.

Our next meeting will be September 23, and as I noted at the top we complete our gubernatorial trifecta with Delegate Ron George introducing himself to the club.

I would like to make one final comment. In many instances, we allow the visiting speakers to speak early figuring they have a long drive back home or to where they are staying. Few stay for the whole meeting, but Charles indeed stuck it out and spoke to several members afterward individually. That sort of gesture is not forgotten.

Saying no to the pile of money

It’s not the most exciting read, but a white paper by State Budget Solutions delves into the question of whether states will be able to resist the pile of money dangled by the federal government to adopt Common Core educational standards. Obviously there are states like Maryland which won’t say no to anything handed out by the federal government, regardless of quality or need, but there are a few which have not adopted Common Core or want to reconsider it. The argument made by SBS was that, despite the fact most states have adopted this “voluntary” change in standards, it’s unlikely that all states will have to because a recent Supreme Court decision found that the threat of withholding all Medicaid funding was unnecessarily “coercive”:

In NFIB v. Sebelius, the Court upheld the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including the individual mandate for health insurance. But seven justices also agreed that the federal government was not permitted to expand the joint state-federal Medicaid program by threatening states that it would eliminate all of its financial support for Medicaid that the states had previously received. The Court determined that such a penalty was unconstitutionally coercive.

Because of that decision, as well as a 1987 SCOTUS decision (South Dakota v. Dole) regarding the reduction of federal aid to states not adopting a legal drinking age of 21, it appears the permissible limit of federal reduction lies someplace north of five percent, but Uncle Sam cannot take away all money.

Still, given the fact that federal transfers comprise between 1/4 and 1/2 of a state’s budget – very scary in and of itself – the claim that just 12.3% of education dollars come from the federal government doesn’t mean there aren’t other, more devious ways to punish states for non-compliance. Moreover, local jurisdictions – particularly in Maryland – have a very difficult time declaring their financial independence from the state. Nowhere was this more evident than in the passage of 2012’s Senate Bill 848, which in essence invalidated locally-adopted property tax caps if the state deemed too little money was being allocated to education. The difference in our fair county was a staggering $14 million, and I expounded on this at the time.

This doesn’t address the philosophy of Common Core, which is also controversial and a reason to waive participation, but it makes the case that states can refuse the money dangles before it by Uncle Sam.

A blessing or a curse?

For many bloggers who dream about breaking the big story, the point at which the day finally arrives and you get national attention may be one of the most exhilarating in an otherwise humdrum journalism career. However, as the recent case of one of my blogging friends illustrates, you can run the risk of having your most important work ignored for, in this case, a literal fluff piece.

This tale begins two years ago, when Bob caught wind of a Missouri couple who faced $3.9 million in fines from the USDA for the egregious offense of selling over $500 worth of bunnies in a calendar year. Obviously it was a good story of government run amok and it received some attention among those in the conservative news media at the time.

Eventually this story developed into a guest blog by a South Carolina magician who related three tales of overaggressive enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act, and as it turns out one of those three contacted McCarty about the latest insanity from our bureaucracy regarding disaster plans for these rabbits. Once again, the story went viral and was mentioned in a number of conservative news outlets.

At first, Bob seemed to be pretty cool with this. But several days in, McCarty seems to have second thoughts:

Only one week in, I can already say it’s been a good month at!  At the same time, however, I must say things could be much better.


While I appreciate the attention this story has received, I would much prefer seeing our nation’s top bloggers, journalists and radio personalities devoting some attention to the topics I cover in the two nonfiction books I wrote during the past four years:  Three Days In August and THE CLAPPER MEMO.  Why? Because my books deal with life-and-death issues that impact our men and women in uniform who serve in harm’s way. (All emphasis in original.)

In fact, as the original rabbit post was gaining attention, Bob was wrapping up work on Three Days in August, which came out in October, 2011. In May of this year came his second book, The Clapper Memo, and as he notes both books deal with issues impacting our military. (Bob spent several years in the Air Force as a public relations officer, so he has a military background.)

It’s obvious that Bob is worried about being typecast as the guy who does the “rabbit stories” much like an actor who’s made his career playing comedic roles always longs to play the meatier dramatic parts; meanwhile, the aspects of the actor’s roles which involve outstanding acting are overlooked.

And it’s ironic in a sense because I came to Bob’s attention as a result of my own huge day, the Rushalanche I had back in 2007. While it didn’t involve any story I broke – just being able to promote my site on Limbaugh’s show – it still ranks as my all-time best readership day to this very day. But I’d love to have that sort of audience daily for my commentary because I think it’s important to receive a daily dose of common sense with a pro-liberty, pro-prosperity message.

As it relates to Bob, all this occurred when he was more of a full-time blogger and taking the plunge of going to his own domain, just as I did a couple years earlier in starting monoblogue. Over the next couple years he provided great coverage of TEA Party events in his locality, which so happens to be the St. Louis area where relatives of mine live. So I used a lot of his video when he was being a photojournalist for the initial incarnation of my “Friday Night Videos” series, but eventually he retreated from the full-time grind to finish Three Days in August.

Yet he’s a very good e-mail promoter so I still find out about posts he thinks are interesting, and that’s how I received his recent lament. So before you pigeonhole (or is that rabbithole?) him into the same category that features the dreaded “cheezburger” cats, be aware that the guy has serious things to say.

He can’t pull a rabbit out of a hat, but you can consider buying his books.



Well, my Pajamas Media article was noticed by some interesting people.

So today (since I assume most will read this Thursday morning) at 2 p.m. (1 p.m. – I was bumped up) I’m scheduled as a guest on the Thom Hartmann radio program. I’ve been on radio before as a guest – which will help me in this instance – but this is the first time I’ve been invited to a program of such a scale and it’s to discuss this Pajamas Media post. This should be interesting since Hartmann is considered the cream of the crop among liberal radio hosts, and you can guess where I stand politically.

Of course, since this region tends to favor conservative talk, there’s no local station which carries Thom’s program but you can listen here.

So, since this will likely by the top post seen by any who stumble onto my website thanks to this appearance (as happened previously with my Rushalanche in 2007) I invite you to read, ponder, and comment on what I have to say. The local liberals know that I am fair with my comments.

Besides, if you don’t like my politics, wait a few hours or until tomorrow – no, my political stripes aren’t going to change, but I do a regular feature on our local minor league baseball team (the Delmarva Shorebirds) Thursday evenings and Friday night I put up local music videos. If I did wall-to-wall politics I would have been fried four years ago – still, I do my share of discussion on local, state, and national issues.

But I look forward to getting this opportunity to speak out on overregulation – hopefully I can vocalize as well as I place pixels on a computer screen or words on a printed page.

Friday night videos – episode 41

It’s back to the political for this edition of FNV, and I have plenty to choose from since I took the extra week.

You know, Americans aren’t happy with their government and its spending. So says the Senate Republicans.


Nice of them to use some video from my old hometown – the part about Senator Voinovich was taken from WNWO-TV, the NBC affiliate in Toledo.

As a matter of fact I find this next video pretty funny. The vain stumbling in search of a thought is the best part.

Sure Bob Ehrlich put it out, but when you’re caught you’re caught.

Even more funny is this spot for a phony product. Fortunately, I’m not in the market for it.

I still want the sticker I’ve seen which says: ‘You voted for Obama? Thanks a lot @$$hole!’

One group which still supports Obama and his agenda is the NAACP. While it smacks of ‘gotcha’ journalism, sometimes these guerrilla efforts are the best way to get the truth.

Human Events did the video, so consider the source before you demean the message.

Here’s another example of ‘gotcha’ journalism. But imagine if it were a pro-life group disseminating incorrect information – would you not see someone like Geraldo Rivera all over it?

I guess considering the fetus ‘medical waste’ makes it all better?

The next two videos are an impassioned plea from Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal regarding the oil drilling moratorium and jobs. This was at the ‘Rally for Economic Survival.’

If Governor Jindal can continue being a leader, he may yet be a factor in 2012. Do you wonder if President Obama is trying to make him look bad as a potential opponent?

I’m saving the best for last. Americans for Limited Government took time to remind us that next February marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of an American who fought for limited government as much as he could.

Ronald Reagan’s message seems a good way to bring this edition to a close.

Friday night videos – episode 38

Since I missed last week due to personal reasons, it means I have a lot more video to choose from this time.

A little over five years ago, the Supreme Court revealed its Kelo v. New London decision. The Institute for Justice took a look at the impact since in this video.


Hey, it was nice of YouTube to add custom sizing for websites like mine. Saves me some HTML work!

The saving of the work doesn’t just extend to me. Beltway Democrats don’t want to work on a budget.

Maybe they just want to enjoy their summer. In this edition of the Freedom Minute, Renee Giachino talks about Obama’s ‘Recovery Summer.’

Someone who can’t take the summer off is Gen. David Petraeus. But it appears Obama’s advisors blew him off when they promised a July 2011 Afghan withdrawal.

But that’s all right, because Obama staffers are blowing off transparency laws, as Americans for Limited Government reveals.

This one has a wry sense of humor to it, and in good time for Independence Day.

Musically, I think it’s time to dust off Ava Aston once again. Just as a reminder who’s in charge on Independence Day.

Have a great Fourth of July, and Happy 234th Birthday to America!

Celebrating achievement

I’ve blogged about this a couple times before, but tonight Americans who have no life and still believe in the discredited radical environmental movement will sit in the darkness and gloom to “celebrate” the so-called “Earth Hour.” The Competitive Enterprise Institute poked fun at this last year by creating Human Achievement Hour and putting out this video.

As has been tradition around this time, I engaged in the enjoyment of being there last night while thousands of watts of amplification and lighting was expended to boost the local economy of Ocean City and the personal fortunes of dozens of starving artists who are better known as musicians. (Most people call this Skip Dixxon’s Spring Luau.) My point is that it takes energy to grow an economy, but apparently those who want to curtail our usage and bring us back to a 20th or even 19th century lifestyle consider that offensive to their earth goddess.

Needless to say, I stand foursquare against those who would use the force of the state to infringe upon our freedom. Granted, Earth Hour is voluntary (for now) but even exhibiting the mindset of following like lemmings gives them the illusion of popular support and the desire to make what are now suggestions into laws.

In Maryland, this sort of thinking is leading us into even more restrictive stormwater regulations, which only curtails the production of jobs and ironically may reduce the urban development so-called “Smart Growth” advocates desire. At one point there was a compromise reached by the General Assembly which would allow existing projects to continue under the old regulations but that is now out the window – much to the displeasure of those who help to provide private-sector economic growth.

Instead, developers may have to go back to the drawing boards, instituting needless and unnecessary delays and the costs associated with them; yet the benefits are dubious and difficult to measure. Let’s face it – is Chesapeake Bay ever truly going to be clean enough for the radical environmentalists without depopulating the entire watershed? I doubt it, because solving the problem of Bay pollution would put them out of business and the lobbyists and lawyers who depend on their patronage would have to find more honest work.

So I’m going to do my part and celebrate Human Achievement Hour in some way – it may be as simple as leaving a couple extra lights on around our place – and I encourage all of you to do the same. Yes, it’s a little wasteful but the point made is that with progress comes energy demand, and that’s a fact we can’t avoid.

For the record, the state of Maryland is participating in this idiocy, along with the cities of Baltimore, Frederick, Gaithersburg, and Greenbelt; as well, Baltimore and Frederick counties. Governor O’Malley noted in a statement on the Earth Hour website:

“Maryland is an official Earth Hour state, and Katie and I will be turning off our own lights in support of this global movement. By joining us, our fellow citizens will save energy, reduce their carbon footprint and demonstrate to the nation and the world the commitment and leadership of Marylanders on this critical issue.”

So I encourage all right-thinking residents of those areas to instead participate in Human Achievement Hour, and demostrate a call for economic leadership through progress, not regressing back to the Dark Ages.

Obamacare reaches its climax

Well, it sounds like we’re at the tipping point for nationalizing one-sixth of our economy and the question is whether the House will pass the Senate bill or not. Forget reconciliation – there would be no need for it once the House swallows real hard and the dam is broken.

This is a sampling of some of the best action items I’ve seen in the grassroots effort to stop Obamacare. Amy Kremer, writing as part of the upcoming TEA Party Express version 3.0, had these suggestions as a daily schedule:

Wednesday, March 10th: Medical Professionals (you do not have to be a physician) visit local district offices. Be sure to wear your medical attire. Let these offices know that you are not going to sit back and let the government takeover our health care system!

Thursday, March 11th: Veterans go to local district offices. Our veterans are so special. They have a voice like no one else.  Veterans, let these offices know that you fought for her once and you are fighting for her again!

Friday, March 12th: Nationwide rallies at local district offices for 1 hour at 12 noon local. Let’s make it a special point for all of us to go during our lunch hour if at all possible.

Monday, March 15th: Make calls.  Send Faxes.  Send Emails.  You can do all of these things during the day and after business hours.

Tuesday, March 16th
Rally in DC and Nationwide at local district offices. Americans For Prosperity also has sent out an alert to honk at 12 noon that day while you are driving in your car.

If you can’t go to DC on March 16th, please visit your local district offices to have your voices heard and show solidarity with those in DC. Our sources from the Hill tell us that the vote is likely to happen between March 16th and March 18th. If you are able to go to DC, please RSVP here.

If you are doing a rally at your local office please RSVP here, so we can let others know. This is a team effort, and we are part of your team. Whatever you need, please let us know!

Wednesday, March 17th – Friday, March 19th: If you are in D.C., please visit your Representatives and Senators.  If you are not in D.C., please continue to visit local district offices! Make calls.  Send Faxes.  Send Emails.  The calls, faxes, and emails can all be done during the day and after business hours.

Saturday & Sunday, March 20th & 21st: Town Halls for March Madness! In August we had some amazing town halls! They really made people and lawmakers stop and think about this health care legislation. Let’s do it again! Host a town hall in your community and invite your Senator and Congressman.  More details on this next step will be available on American Grassroots Coalition within the next day or two.  Thanks for your patience. (All emphasis in original.)

Sounds like a heckuva to-do list, particularly when we have a Congressman who’s on record for opposing Obamacare anyway. But it never hurts to remind him, does it?

More on that March 16th event comes from Tim Phillips of Americans for Prosperity:

On March 16, we’re holding the “Honk Against the Health Care Takeover” event. Here’s what we’re asking you to do. At 12 Noon your time on March 16, drive to your member of Congress’s district office and join a car caravan there, circling your representative’s office while honking against the health care takeover.

Just CLICK HERE for more information and to let us know you’re on board. You’ll be able to print off your very own “Honk Against the Health Care Takeover” sign for your car when you register. Sign up tomorrow, March 10, to receive a free bumper sticker in the mail before March 16.

In addition, you can sign up to be a car caravan leader. You can pick a parking lot near your Congressman’s office and let folks know you will be there to lead them over to the district office. It will be fun to meet fellow grassroots activists and to go over in a caravan to send your message.

Here’s the bottom line. The president is in the midst of his final all-out push for his health care takeover. Yes, his campaign is dishonest and over-the-top. But, to their credit they are refusing to quit this fight. So, we’ve got to beat them in these final days before the House vote.

They’ve put everything on the line for their ideology, as flawed as it is. 

The question for us is:  will we do the same for our values, our freedoms and our nation?

Knowing what I know about Americans like us, I believe the answer will be a resounding YES. 

Again, given the fact we have Congressman on record as a likely “no” vote, I suspect our protest may be a little more subdued than others. But we’ll see.

Even Newt Gingrich chimed in, with this being the money passage from his post on Human Events:

I have even taken heat from fellow conservatives for cooperating with leading Democrats to achieve health reforms we agree on, like greater use of health information technology. In fact, there are even some specific elements of the bill — like payment reform to reward quality care — with which I agree.

However, as someone who has dedicated the last decade of his life to fixing what’s broken in America’s health care system, and has reached across party lines to do so, I regrettably have to say that this bill will do vastly more harm than good.

Here’s the rub, though. Why is it that conservatives and Republicans always have to reach across the aisle to Democrats?

You know, I’m damn tired of bipartisanship when it’s my side being sold down the river. I’ve watched this ship of state founder and draw dangerously close to the rocks ever since Ronald Reagan left office. While even Reagan couldn’t steer it in the proper direction, he at least held to the deepest part of the river and served as an anchor against the slow drift toward tyranny.

Not only is it time to kill this monstrosity of a bill, it’s long past time to reconsider why the government is in the health care market in the first place. One way or the other, entitlements left unchecked will destroy us – either we’ll drive the nation into default and bankruptcy or we’ll be dependent on government like New Orleans was as Katrina lashed the city.

We have a lot of hard decisions to make, but the first one is easy. Drive a wooden stake through the heart of Obamacare and be done with it.

Robbing Peter (and John, David, Mary, etc.) to pay Paul

One criticism I’ve had about Maryland’s budget system is its lack of flexibility. There are a lot of money pots out there besides the General Fund, and Martin O’Malley seems to want to take money out of every one of them to balance his FY2011 budget. This from Americans for Prosperity:

As you know, the Senate Budget & Taxation Committee will be holding a public hearing this Wednesday on SB141. This bill, the Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act, will transfer nearly $1 BILLION from the state’s 382 special funds to cover Gov. O’Malley’s budget deficit.


One of the funds Gov. O’Malley is proposing to raid is the Transportation Trust Fund (TTF). Started in 1971, the TTF is the account used to pay for road, bridge and infrastructure repairs. It is primarily funded by the gas tax – each time you fill up at the pump, you are contributing to road repair…or so you thought. This year, O’Malley has decided to take $125 million of those taxes and use it to paper over his $2 billion deficit.

Stealing from the Transportation Trust Fund becomes even more problematic next year, because the TTF is already under-funded. When the fund runs dry you can bet that the liberal politicians will want to raise taxes. Senate President Mike Miller has been pushing the idea of a gas tax hike for the last few years.

Another fund that O’Malley has decided to attack is the Injured Workers Insurance Fund (IWIF). IWIF is a low-premium insurer for many businesses who provide workers compensation to employees. It is financed by the premiums each policy holder pays on a quarterly basis.

Not only is the legality of the state confiscating $26 million from a private insurance company in question, but this move will hurt small businesses. Again, when the fund is drained, the premium rates will rise to replace the stolen revenue.

Small businesses are the engine of our state economy – they employ nearly two-thirds of the workforce in Maryland. If we expect an economic recovery with job growth, the government cannot continue to put undue burdens on businesses. The last thing small businesses need right now is to be paying higher insurance premiums or gas taxes.

382 special funds in the Maryland budget? WTF? Anyway, the Maryland Senate Republican Caucus also weighed in:

Entering the 2010 legislative session, there were few remaining reserve funds left to tap. They have all been depleted. O’Malley has exhausted all available reserves except for the Rainy Day Fund. Tapping the Rainy Day could jeopardize the coveted Triple A bond rating which would cause great embarrassment to the administration.

So O’Malley turned to the Injured Workers Insurance Fund to tap a reserve of $20 million. Problem is – the IWIF reserve is not state money. It is not taxpayer dollars. Instead it is overpayments of insurance premiums from small businesses throughout the state.

Then is it legal? A 1968 opinion of the Attorney General’s Office states that reserve funds of the State Accident Fund (IWIF’s predecessor) are not state funds accessible for general purposes. Established as a nonprofit insurance company, IWIF is a quasi-public agency and state use of insurance overpayments as a fund swap would be unconstitutional.

To cover their tracks, the O’Malley Administration has now introduced bills (Senate Bill 507 and House Bill 1008) that would give the Governor authority to transfer the $20 million this year just as long as it’s never done again. Go figure!

So, not only do we have the BRFA bill but now another bill in order to fix things for this year. Sheesh.

The larger question is what we’ll need to do next year to fill in all of these pots. With the federal portion of the state budget now eclipsing 60 percent, one would think that Barack Obama may bail out his cohort if he’s reelected this November. But with these funds come strings and that lack of flexibility will probably preclude O’Malley being able to make up the shortfalls with federal money next year.

Three years ago, Governor O’Malley called a Special Session to address this issue and its result was a number of tax increases which were supposed to correct the state’s structural deficit. However, the increase in the sales tax, cigarette tax, and a (since-repealed) “tech tax” on computer services were counterbalanced by a huge increase on spending which attempted to bring health insurance to thousands more Marylanders.

To the surprise of everyone – except those with a little bit of economic common sense – these new levies didn’t bring in as much money as the so-called experts predicted. In all that’s not so bad, but other previous taxes like property and real estate transfer taxes also declined. Making matters worse (but certainly not unexpected) is the outflow of capital due to the “millionaire’s tax” – again, from the Senate GOP Caucus:

According to an Associated Press article posted at, Montgomery County has experienced a 27% decline in tax returns from high income earners. This decline has contributed to a loss of $4.6 billion in taxable income: “County Executive Isiah Leggett says some wealthy residents who own homes in other states are establishing residency elsewhere. Officials believe the state’s millionaire tax is a factor.”

You think?

Unlike the perception progressives attempt to create about TEA Partiers as people who want to get government services without paying for them (a description more apt for Democrat voters,) most don’t mind paying a fair share in taxes. But what we want in return are efficient services which perform necessary functions, and too often we find that government at all levels fails to deliver on one or both sides of the equation.

If Martin O’Malley truly decided to live within his means, he would gain the intestinal fortitude to make cuts such as the insurance program he started. Obviously it’s a decision which affects a large number of people, but so would increasing taxes and fees. Raising the gas tax, for example, would disproportionately affect poor and middle-class Free Staters and rural residents like those on the Eastern Shore would pay more of a toll than city residents along the I-95 corridor.

One issue sure to come up in this year’s campaign will be fiscal accountability, and while Bob Ehrlich wasn’t the poster child for frugality the state was in much better financial shape when he left office than the potential mess he inherits should he be re-elected for a second, non-consecutive term.

Perhaps a solution would be to bring in some solid fiscal conservatives for the General Assembly in with Ehrlich, hopefully to keep his free-spending tendencies in check. Mark my words, if Martin O’Malley is reelected 2011 will be a rerun of 2007 – a session devoted to raising taxes and killing off whatever recovery the state is scratching out by then.

Count on a nosy government

Since 1790, every 10 years the federal government has come around to count every American in an effort to determine proportional representation. This is dictated by Article I, Section 2 of our Constitution and it’s one of the rare instances the Constitution has been rigidly followed throughout our 230-plus year history.

In March, most households will receive a fairly short form intended to provide the information the government needs to determine these Congressional districts. (Others get a longer form which asks a number of questions about living situation, income, and other personal items.) In either case, though, respondents are asked about much more than the number of people living in their dwelling.

Consider the 10-question short form most Americans will receive. While Question 1 seeks the essential information about how many occupy the subject’s residence, other questions on the short form ask about home ownership, gender, and race.

More importantly, the government database being created also has name, age, date of birth, and telephone number. While the Census Bureau vows that the information collected will be kept secure, one has to wonder just how private this information will remain in an age of hackers and identity theft. Remember, none of this information is truly necessary to achieve the mandated purpose of determining population numbers for proportional representation.

In truth, the Census facts and figures have grown to meet purposes far beyond the intentions of the Founding Fathers, just as the size and scope of the government they created has. According to the Census Bureau, the status of living arrangements is asked because the answers are, “used to administer housing programs and to inform planning decisions.” Similarly, the age and date of birth are used for, “forecasting the number of people eligible for Social Security or Medicare services,” and the gender question is asked because, “many federal programs must differentiate between males and females for funding, implementing, and evaluating their programs.”

But even the obvious reason for the decennial count has fallen prey to overt discrimination on the part of bureaucrats in Washington, for it’s not Question 1 which determines the proper number of representatives to Congress per state, but Question 9.

And what is Question 9? It asks the race of each person in the household, yet,”state governments use the data to determine congressional, state, and local voting districts.” So much for the colorblind society those in power claim they wish to create. Instead, these numbers are used to create monolithic voting districts which forever doom minorities to second-class status.

The Census Bureau website claims that the count is necessary because, “(e)ach question helps to determine how more than $400 billion will be allocated to communities across the country.” Their radio spots talk about the need to respond because otherwise we’d not know if a school grew enough for new classrooms or if a town needed a traffic signal. They conveniently forget, though, that there’s other less intrusive measures to come up with the appropriate figures. As always, it becomes a question of following the money.

It’s been said many times in several variants that, “a house divided against itself cannot stand.” We see the results of pitting groups against one another – a weakening of freedom and an erosion of liberty.

In response, we should call on our leaders to return the Census to the noble purpose for which it was intended and not continue using it as the wedge it’s become. While it’s not advisable to ignore the Census, we should think twice about just what information we share with Washington.

Michael Swartz, an architect and writer who lives in rural Maryland, is a Liberty Features Syndicated writer.

Yes, I’m serious – when the form comes I’m only answering Question 1 (and Lord help the person responsible if they send me the American Community Survey.) This cleared LFS back on February 18 and was featured in at least one small paper up in Minnesota.

Upping the ante

Well, isn’t this conveeeeeeeeenient (spoken in a Church Lady voice).

Last week I talked about Organizing For Against America wanting 1 million volunteer hours to spread the lies about Obamacare – no surprise they got that goal, which I thought was a little weak considering there’s 13 million on the e-mail list. Here’s their breathless announcement:

In just the last 3 days, OFA volunteers like you have pledged an incredible 4,000,000 (and counting!) hours to support members of Congress and candidates who fight for real health reform.

We can prove to Congress that health reform is good policy and good politics, but we need to go as big as possible. So today we’re setting a new goal: 5 million hours pledged.

If we hit it, the country will know. We’ll be running an ad with the final tally in USA Today, the nation’s largest newspaper. And to make sure your voice is heard where it matters most, we’ll run radio ads in critical states and districts, featuring local voters announcing the pledge total from their area.


Beginning soon, we’ll talk to voters state-by-state, district-by-district, about why it’s important to stand with those who fight for progress and reform — and reject those who stand with big insurers to protect a status quo that is devastating our economy, families, and businesses. (Emphasis in original.)

We can rewrite that last sentence to say: Beginning soon, Organizing Against America will go back to lying like a rug to promote our takeover of 1/6 of the national economy by wiping out private health insurance companies. 

That and I’ll be listening for those radio ads around here since we’re represented a Democrat who’s been reticent to join the rest of his party, believing (correctly) to do so would be political suicide.

Bet the TEA Partiers can log 10 million hours, but we’re not going to pay for an ad in USA Today to crow about the accomplishment – we’re just going to get to work.