Friday, November 26, 2010

Crash JP Morgan. Buy Silver

If you're as upset as I am about rampant fraud on the part of the TBTF (Too Big to Fail) banks, then this article might interest you.  Tired of the TBTF's being treated as if they are above the law?  Tired of the government serving the banksters' interests instead of the people's interests?  Well, watch my brief video, and check out this link.  Maybe there is something "we the people" can do about it. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Quantitative Easing Explained

This was the first Xtranormal video I saw last week on Facebook. I loved it so much, I made one of my own. Check out "Bank Fraud Explained" But this is the video that started it all. Now everybody is getting into the act.


The Federal Reserve is Laundering Money

Bank Fraud Explained

I've fallen in love with this internet tool. It's called Xtranormal.  With a very short and simple learning curve, anyone can create and post animated videos to the web.  What a great vehicle for education and advocacy.  I spent a good part of the day today creating this video on the history of banking fraud in the current economic crisis.  It's a bit long at just over 14 minutes, but if you're bored, just quit when you've had enough.


High Frequency Trading Explained

Once again, some knowledgeable individual has put the cartoon video programming tools at xtranormal to good use. This time, we are offered an easy to understand explanation of high frequency trading.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Promo for Radio Free America

Will and I host a weekly internet radio show. Tune in to Radio Free America every Monday night at 6pm Eastern Time. If you miss the live broadcast, you can listen to the recorded podcast anytime.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Libertarian Party's Response to Republicans: NUTS

Some guys just don't know when they're beaten.  Some guys can't see the writing on the wall and insist on going down fighting.  Reason would demand they concede defeat, but some guys see keeping faith with their fellows as the more honorable choice.  And sometimes their stubbornness is rewarded with unexpected victory.  I'm thinking of two very different events.  One took place over sixty years ago near the Belgian town of Bastogne.  The other one is taking place today right here in Delaware.

Bastogne was at the center of one of the most significant battles of World War II.  The 101st Airborne Division under the command of Brigadier General Anthony McAuliffe was surrounded by German forces who offered terms of surrender.  But McAuliffe didn't know he was beaten and responded in a truly American fashion.  His response became as famous as the battle itself. 

The Delaware event is a much more subtle example of a similar stubbornness.  No one will be making a movie of this story, and the significance to history is tiny by comparison.  But the spirit of resistance, and the sense of honor and keeping faith with one's comrades still shines through.

The latest polling numbers I've seen in the Delaware House race show John Carney ahead by 9% over Glen Urquhart.  The Monmouth University poll of 790 likely voters is a couple of weeks old, so things may have changed since then.  But if the numbers are to be believed, Carney is favored by 53% of the voters to Urquhart's 44%, with only 3% of likely voters left who are undecided or committed to a third candidate. So why have supporters of Glen Urquhart been contacting Libertarian candidate Brent Wangen to ask him to abandon his campaign for the House of Representatives and support Urquhart?  Even if Brent were to yield to this pressure, which is not likely, what makes Republicans think Brent could deliver the entire 3%.  And even if he could, that three percent would not come close to narrowing the gap.  Plus, there are two other alternative party candidates in the race besides Brent.  Up until now, both major parties have been ignoring the smaller challengers and pretending they don't even exist.  Debate venues up and down the state have refused access to the smaller party candidates, and Urquhart has gone out of his way to make certain the name Wangen never passes his lips in public.  Now they come with hat in hand hoping for a favor?  I'm sorry, but this is pathetic.

Brent has run a principled campaign founded on the platform that The Constitution is the Solution.  There is no way we will ever know what kind of results the Libertarian Party might have been able to achieve had they enjoyed equal access to debates and an opportunity to get their message out.  To my mind, Brent is the real star in this election cycle, even if the polls don't reflect that.  Could the Urquhart campaign be looking for a scapegoat if they lose the November election?  This would not surprise me.  Libertarians are constantly being accused of being spoilers.  If Brent gets 5% of the vote and Urquhart loses by 4% or 5 % we will hear no end to the accusations that Brent was responsible for the loss.  Republicans will be whining about Brent stealing their margin of victory.  As if the votes ever belonged to them in the first place.  What an arrogant sense of entitlement that would be.  How about if I complain that Glen Urquhart stole Brent's 45% margin of victory?  As if Brent has some entitlement to those votes.  Sounds pretty ridiculous doesn't it?  No one is entitled to anyone's votes.  You have to earn them.  If you don't earn enough votes, you lose.  It's as simple as that.

Personally, I think there has never been a year when bucking the trend and voting one's conscience was easier than this year.  John Quincy Adams said, "Always vote for principle though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost."  I have never in my life cast a more satisfying or more principled vote than the one I am about to cast for Brent Wangen for the U.S. House of Representatives.  Win or lose, I will cherish the sweetest reflection of this opportunity to make the principled choice.  An election is not a lottery.  The goal is not simply to pick the winner.  The goal is not to seek bragging rights for the morning after the election to boast to your colleagues around the water cooler that you chose the winning candidate.  What does it benefit anyone to choose the winning candidate if you passed over the better candidate because you thought the odds were too long.  Despite the media portrayal to the contrary, an election is not a horse race.

And all of you Facebook supporters of Glen Urquhart who have been complaining that you have lost respect for the Libertarian Party and for Brent because he won't do the "right thing" and drop out in favor of Glen, know this.  We are not Republicans.  We are Libertarians. We have a different vision for America than you do.  We will not bow to your will simply because you believe you are entitled to something special from the electorate.  Are you not satisfied to have more registered voters, more influence, more money, more incumbent politicians, more party organization, more lawyers, more name recognition, and a longer political history?  You apparently feel that Libertarians also owe you some sort of duty to step out of the way when the going gets tough for one of your candidates.  Well thanks for the opportunity to serve, but no thanks.  We won't be laying our coat over the puddle for your candidate to step over.  Not in this election; not in any election.

You want a clearer response?  How about the one General McAuliffe gave the Germans in 1944 during the Battle of the Bulge.  NUTS!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

No Cliche Left Behind

 If you're playing the political game and you're not having fun, you're doin' it wrong!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

When You Think of Politics, Think of Sour Milk

So, have I mentioned that I'm a Libertarian?  Anyway, I was sitting around with a bunch of other Libertarians at lunch yesterday.  We had gathered to join House candidate Brent Wangen for his monthly Delaware Days.  Brent gets together every month with members of the community to talk about his campaign, elicit opinions from the electorate, and just generally talk politics and government over a cup of coffee or a bite to eat.

As often happens at these gatherings, the discussion eventually turned to the dominance of the political landscape by the incumbent parties, the R's and the D's.  This despite repeated failure by both parties to deliver on their rhetoric of better, more efficient government.  Brent paraphrased the lines from a Maxine cartoon from a while back.  Maxine was talking about remarrying spouses that you had previously divorced.  Brent's version was intended to comment on Americans' tendency to bounce back and forth between failed Republican administrations to failed Democratic administrations and back again to Republicans.  Brent's slightly revised version of Maxine's comments went as follows.

Two years ago, we threw out the Republicans because they screwed up so badly, and we put in the Democrats.  This year, we're getting ready to throw out the Democrats and put the Republicans back in.  It's kind of like throwing out a bottle of sour milk, finding it in the trash two years later, and thinking, "Gee, I wonder if this will taste any better now."  (Crystal clear insight courtesy of Maxine)

The point is, since as far back as the middle of the nineteenth century with the birth of the Republican Party, we've been bouncing back and forth between one failed big government party to the other one, and back again.  It's time to try something different.  Libertarians offer a real alternative to the two big government parties.  And don't kid yourself.  The Republicans and the Democrats are BOTH big government parties.  The Democrats may be better at growing government than the Republicans (think New Deal, Great Society, and  now Obamacare), but the Republicans are no slackers either.  (Think No Child Left Behind, the unfunded Medicare Part D, the biggest increase in entitlement spending to date at the time, and TARP which started under the Republicans.)  And as we Libertarians are very fond of saying, "The lesser of two evils is still evil."  The Democrats are the party of tax and spend.  The Republicans are the party of borrow and spend.  Or to put it a different way, the Democrats want to tax you and spend your money.  The Republicans are OK with taxing your children and spending their money.  Because what else is deficit spending other than an inter-generational transfer of wealth.  Or in plainer language,  stealing from our children.

Another analogy occurs to me about our tendency to repeatedly forgive the large political parties that continue to disappoint us.  It's as if American voters are all suffering in an abusive relationship  The abuser only has to apologize and promise they'll change, and the abused person is willing to forgive them and take them back again.  The Republicans and the Democrats both make condescending arguments to the American voters reminiscent of, "No one will ever love you the way I do."  And the unfortunate electorate sheepishly resign themselves, yet again, to the inevitable disappointment.   This failed relationship always seems to end in tears.

The message here is, "Wake up America!"  You have been in an abusive relationship for the past 150 years.  It's time to break free.  Alternative parties are the answer to America's failed, co-dependent relationship with its political leaders.  Break out of the trap this election year.  Take a good whiff of the bottle before you take another swig.  Vote Libertarian on November 2nd.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

New Campaign Signs

We'd like to thank our incumbent party opponents for coordinating their campaign sign placement to help us make our point.  You guys are swell!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Debates Should Be About Ideas

Last Thursday night, the Jewish Community Center of Newcastle County held a candidate’s debate.  I was particularly looking forward to this one.  Up until the middle of September, the only candidates who showed their faces in public were the Republicans and the smaller party challengers.  With the primaries over, the Democrats finally emerged from their slumber to engage their opponents in the general election. 

I wanted to see how the Democrats stacked up against their Republican opposite numbers, but more importantly, I went there to see the Libertarian candidate for US House of Representatives, Brent Wangen.  This would be a rare opportunity for a Libertarian to present his ideas on the same stage as the major party candidates and let people see what real choice looks like in a political contest.  To sum up the Libertarian message:  We actually believe in the fiscal responsibility and smaller government that the Republicans claim to endorse, while embracing most of the socially tolerant attitudes of the Democrats.  We’re like Democrats who know how to balance a checkbook.

Running for public office is not easy.  Doing it as a Libertarian is tougher still.  Most people think it is a law of nature to have only two choices in politics.  They wouldn’t go to an ice cream parlor that only served chocolate and vanilla, but they’ll settle for two political parties which both embrace big intrusive government.  You don’t run as a Libertarian because you want the easy path.  You do it because you want the principled path.  If you want easy, you join the Republican or Democratic parties. 

So back to the Jewish Community Center debate.  They invited Brent to join the debate.  Brent accepted.  E-mails were exchanged to confirm his participation.  The venue was packed.  Turnout was huge.  I was psyched.  I couldn’t wait to see Libertarian ideas presented on equal terms with Republican and Democrat ideas.  Fair fight.  Let the best ideas win.  But politics is a cruel business.  Ten minutes before the debate, Brent was told he wouldn’t be allowed to participate.  They didn’t consider him “a viable candidate.”  Who decides who is a viable candidate?   I guess the Jewish Community Center believes they do.  He is viable enough to have earned a place on the ballot.  I think that’s adequate qualification for his ideas to get an equal hearing in a true debate.  Maybe debates aren’t really supposed to be about ideas.  Maybe they are just a tradition nurtured by the two major parties to create the illusion of choice. 

One of the sponsors of the debate was making some introductions prior to the candidate’s speaking.  She made a point of praising the history of debates at the Jewish Community Center.  She said their success was attributable in part to a long tradition of communication with the candidates.  I almost choked on my own spit when I heard that.  I believe the Jewish Community Center owes Brent Wangen and the voters of Delaware an apology for this shabby treatment.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

My Impressions of Glenn Beck's 8/28 Restoring Honor Rally

First, some background.  I rarely watch Glenn on TV, and only occasionally listen to his radio show.  Usually five minute snippets while I'm driving home for lunch.  But I consider myself a fan.  I share his concern for the future of this country.  I think his message is one of patriotism.  Not an arrogant, nationalistic patriotism, but a humble patriotism based on love of country and pride in our history and our traditions.   He and I and many thousands of other Americans have rediscovered the importance of the words and deeds of our founding fathers.  We've come to understand and appreciate the founders at a much deeper level than we ever did in grade school.  Glenn has made it his life's mission to teach that renewed respect for the founders to his listeners and readers and to encourage us to pass it on to our children.  And despite what his critics say, I believe Glenn is sincere in both his beliefs and his presentation.  Sure he gets a bit emotional at times, but I've found myself on the verge of tears on a number of occasions lately when contemplating the crisis this country faces, and I've never thought of myself as a particularly weepy guy.  I am actually quite amazed at the level of vitriol the left spews out at him on a regular basis.    If they can't discredit the message, they'll seek to discredit the messenger.  Sadly, our side is often guilty of the same thing.  Rush, are you listening?  The other thing I love about Glenn Beck is his wicked sense of humor.  Talk about a guy you'd love to have a beer with.  If it wasn't for the whole recovering alcoholic thing, I'd love to sit down with the Glenn over a couple of  brews and trash the snobby liberal elites.

Being a Glenn Beck fan can be a little difficult in some of the circles I travel in.  You see, I'm a Libertarian.  I've trended libertarian in my political philosophy for some time, but only recently abandoned my Republican Party registration in favor of formally adopting the Libertarian Party.  Imagine my surprise when I discovered that most Libertarians I speak with revile Glenn Beck almost as much as the Democrats do.  What's up with that?  You'd think that anyone who honors and respects the founders and the Constitution as much as Glenn Beck does would be held in particularly high regard by small government Libertarians.  Not so.  Most focus on what they perceive as fatal flaws.  His faith.  His views on marriage.  His regard for the military.  But then most Libertarians feel the same way about Ronald Reagan, citing bigger government and growing deficits on his watch.  As if driving a stake through the heart of Communism wasn't worth a bit of a departure from strict Libertarian principles.  Many Libertarians also resent Ron Paul.  Instead of recognizing him as a shining example of libertarian principles who has chosen to fight his battles from within a major party, many see him as a crafty Republican who has usurped their Libertarian message.  So the people who hate Glenn Beck have a few other folks I admire on their enemies list.  Glenn is in very good company in my opinion.  Truly, sometimes I wonder if I'm cut out for the rigors of membership in the Libertarian Party.   

So I am an unashamed Glenn Beck fan.  I admire his message, and I admire his style.  But I have to say, I was disappointed with the rally today.  Let me tell you why.  I don't blame Glenn Beck for my disappointment.  In retrospect, I believe he made it clear enough what the focus of today's gathering was going to be.  The emphasis was on faith in God.  He had telegraphed his intent for months in advance.  He stated early on in the program this morning that today was not about politics.  It was about faith.  And Glenn lived up to his promise.  I came expecting the message to be about politics.  It wasn't.  I am not a religious person.  I know many for whom their lack of religious feelings translates into an opposition to religious feelings in others.  I am not one of those people.  I have no grudge or resentment towards people of faith, but it's not me.  I know that for religious people, their faith is often the most important and fulfilling aspect of their life.  I would never try to dissuade someone from their faith in God no matter what my personal opinion might be.  In a similar vein, I would not long tolerate someone trying to impose their faith on me.  That was the problem for me this morning.

America is a Christian nation, and I've known that for most of my 57 years.  It's not just a matter of religion, it is a matter of culture.  I have no problem with that.  I happily accept the religious symbolism, the religious language and the integration of Christian prayers in the texture of my daily life.  It is part of the culture of America.  Prayers in public venues such as meetings and festive meals do not offend me.  But neither do I seek them out.  Nor do I make a habit of regular prayer or church attendance in my own daily life.  The first two hours of today's three hour rally would be best described as a revival meeting rather than a political rally.  Most in the crowd seemed to embrace the experience with a sincere religious fervor.  A few like myself were less enthusiastic.  This accounts for my personal disappointment today.  But I am still glad I attended.  For reasons I'll mention in a moment, today was still an important day in the history of this nation, and I wouldn't have missed it for the world.  I will be curious to read in the coming days how others felt about the experience.

Having addressed the spiritual nature of the program, and my indifference to the religious message over the political message I had expected, let me tell you some things that I did like.  First, a rather quirky comment.  At one point early on in the program, one of the most amazing things happened.  A flock of geese flew down the open space over the reflecting pool headed toward the Lincoln Memorial.  They were in a perfect vee formation, and flew gracefully to the end of the pool near the stage before veering off over the trees to the left of the podium.  It was like an Air Force fly by: just as inspiring, but much more elegant .  I overheard someone in the crowd say something about divine intervention.  Yeah, well I guess that could be one interpreation.  Whatever it was, it got a huge response from the crowd at our end of the reflecting pool.

And speaking of the crowd, the crowd was huge.  A true patriot had called upon Americans to assemble at a particular time and a particular place to demonstrate their resolve to save this country from its perilous course.  And we responded in overwhelming numbers.  We sent a message that we would no longer remain silent, complacent and apathetic.  We will push back, and we will take back this country.  When I first decided to attend, my principle motivation was simply to make the turn out that much bigger.  I was fully prepared to be a member of a crowd so large that I might be too far away from the stage to even hear anything that was being said.  I would have been OK with that.  Most important was to be one more body in the crowd waving up to the people in the overhead helicopters counting the response of patriotic Americans.  As much as they will deny it, the powers that be cannot help but get the message that was sent today.  I am proud to have been a part of that; to have added my voice to the voices of perhaps a million others all shouting the same message.  "We're mad as hell and we're not going to take this any more!" 

Another appealing aspect of the program today was the recognition and respect shown to the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King.  Today was the 47th anniversary of Dr. King's "I Have a Dream" speech, delivered at this same venue, the Lincoln Memorial.  The liberal press had railed against Glenn Beck for presuming to hold this rally on such a solemn anniversary and in such a hallowed place.  Glenn's answer to them was that Dr. Martin Luther King doesn't belong only to black people any more than the Founding Fathers belong only to white people.  All of these giants among men are part of a common heritage for all Americans to be proud of.  In the end, it was a beautiful and heartfelt tribute to one of the most selfless and heroic Americans that ever lived.  And all the while, somewhere across town, the Rev. Al Sharpton was holding his own rally in protest of what he called Glenn Beck's attempt to "hijack" the Civil Rights Movement.  How's that for the height of irony?  Reverend Al Sharpton, the most disingenuous and dishonest usurper of the mantle of Civil Rights Leader known to man, calling Glenn Beck the hijacker.  As if  pompous windbag, poseurs and race baiters like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson aren't the most despicable hijackers that ever lived. 

Finally, the last hour focused on an inspiring speech by Glenn more in line with what we've come to expect from his TV show.  Still heavily infused with the spiritual, but with equal emphasis on American values and traditions, and frequent references to the giants from the past:  Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln. 

I suspect the pundits will say it was political.  Today it wasn't.  They'll say it was wrong to try to channel Dr King.  He did it with grace and reverence.  They'll say Glenn Beck is a huckster and a snake oil salesman.  He's said himself he is just a rodeo clown.  I'll say that Glenn Beck has played a major role in inspiring a generation of Americans to embrace their heritage, and for that he deserves our admiration and our gratitude.



Saw an interesting sticker at the rally.  "I can see November from my house too"

Made me chuckle.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Vote Small and Think Big

I think this guy is on to something. The specifics in Britain are a bit different from here, but the principles are the same. Remember the words of John Quincy Adams:

Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost


Monday, August 9, 2010

Can It Be An Epiphany If You're Not Sure It Was An Epiphany? Oxymoron?

For the longest time I have been trying to get my head around the inflation/deflation question. Both sides make good arguments. I tended to agree with whoever I heard last. On the one hand, if the economy is slowing and people are out of work, they have less money to spend. Supply and demand should drive prices down, ie. my dollar gets more valuable. That's deflation. On the other hand, if Congress keeps deficit spending and the Fed keeps printing money more dollars exist to chase the same goods, ie, my dollars get less valuable. That's inflation. I have been struggling with these concepts for months and always came away confused. I was determined to keep reading, hoping that eventually the truth would gradually emerge into the front of my mind, or I would have some kind of epiphany and suddenly see the light. Well, I'm not certain, but this morning I may have had that epiphany. How's that for vague? How can it be an epiphany if you're not certain it happened. I read an article by Jim Rickards who I follow on Twitter. I think you should read it too. The article isn't very long, but the executive summary goes like this:

Due to recession or depression (you choose), we have deflation. The Fed is fighting it with inflationary policies like zero interest rates and Quantitative Easing. The two opposing forces are in balance or equilibrium for now. But the system is unstable and a crisis could call the value of a dollar into question. The coiled spring of inflation could be released with a vengeance and we get hyperinflation.

As one of the frequent commenters on my favorite financial website, Zero Hedge is fond of saying, "Gold Bitches!!"


Friday, July 30, 2010

Saturday, July 24, 2010

BS Removal Kit

Politics and the Cola Wars

Remember several years ago when the soft drink bottler 7-Up ran an ad campaign against the major players, Coke and Pepsi? They labeled themselves the Uncola. They drew a contrast between their product and that of the majors. The message 7-Up conveyed was that they were under appreciated. Their product had lots of appeal with the country’s cola drinkers, but they just weren’t getting the market share. Traditional cola drinkers were loyal to their brands out of years of habitual consumption. The colas weren’t necessarily better products. Indeed, many people actually preferred 7-Up once they tried it. But many customers had built up an almost tribal brand loyalty over the years. 7-Up’s advertising campaign had quite an impact. The trademark “Uncola” became one of the more memorable slogans in advertising history.

Well, for a long time, there has been another David and Goliath conflict being waged. Politics in America has long been dominated by two major parties. But there have always been smaller, lesser known parties opposing the majors. Many lasted just a few campaigns, never to be seen again. But there are some that have demonstrated staying power. These parties are not just one issue parties, but broader based parties, founded on fundamental, and strongly held ideals. Their members are typically well informed, passionate and principled activists who see serious flaws in both of the major parties. Examples include the Green Party, the Libertarian Party, and the Independent Party. You may not be interested in these parties. You may already have a party of your own, and you are loyal to that party because…because…well because you have always been loyal to that party. And loyalty is a good thing, right? Well maybe so, but blind loyalty? Tribal loyalty? I’d like to suggest that you examine what you believe. Then examine the platform of your current party. Are there areas of disagreement? Maybe a few, but that’s to be expected. Now examine what you believe, and compare it to how your party actually behaves. Is there even more daylight between you and your chosen party? Do they stray considerably from their rhetoric? Do they say one thing, and do another? If your answer is yes, maybe you should take a glance at one of the principled minor parties.

Chances are, if you belong to one of the major parties, you would be loathe to switch to the other major. Fair enough. Sadly, lots of people have done just that and have been sorely disappointed with the results. But maybe it’s time to consider one of the smaller parties. Most of the minor party candidates in the upcoming November election will have a website. If one of these candidates comes knocking at your door this campaign season with a flyer, and a request for your vote, check them out. Ask a few questions. You might be pleasantly surprised. Maybe it’s time to try something different, and enjoy the fresh clean taste of a principled small political party.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

USAA Joins the Ranks of Large Institutional Disappointments

I just got an email from USAA praising several Senators for their work on the Financial Reform Legislation. Here's a link to their website version. Did they not get suspicious when they saw the name Dodd-Frank on the bill? I sent them a response on their website. If you feel the same way I do about this and you're a USAA member, you might consider an email of your own.

My Response:

Just got an email from you praising several members of the Senate for their great work in passing Financial Reform Legislation. Are you guys kidding? Does this mean that USAA was at the trough with all the rest of the criminal financial institutions with their lobbyists grasping for favors? What did you give up to get some short term sop from the big government Republican and Democrat Kleptocracy? How many pieces of silver did you get for selling us down the river. You should have fought this thing tooth and nail as a matter of principle. How long do you think you'll have before they come after you again.

Last year, I cut up my AARP card over their healthcare sellout. This year I'm getting ready to cut up my NRA card over their sellout over the DISCLOSE Act and the possibility of their endorsing Harry Reid. It seems that one large trusted institution after another is disappointing me lately. Who's next? The Boy Scouts?

If you think I won't change insurance companies because you're military affiliated, think again. Stupid stupid move on your part. Next time you sell out this country, have the sense to keep your big fat mouth shut.

Jesse McVay Lt. Col. USAF Ret.

Friday, July 16, 2010

David vs Goliath

This kind of reminds me of David vs Goliath. 

And we know how how that ended.  Please reply to comments to suggest a caption of your own.


Friday, July 2, 2010

Irony is a Beautiful Thing

President Obama spoke today at the funeral of Senate icon Robert Byrd, Democrat from West Virginia.  Byrd, as you may know, had a somewhat checkered past when it comes to the area of race relations.  The irony here is a wonder to behold.  The first black president of the United States eulogizing a former Exalted Cyclops of the Ku Klux Klan.  Those assembled agreed that the president's remarks were both comforting and inspiring, but many complained they were unable to hear parts of the president's speech due to a loud thumping noise coming from the area around the podium.  Officials apologized for the distraction, explaining the thumping noise was the sound of Senator Byrd turning over in his grave.


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Farewell Tea Party Dover DE

My son Will spoke today at the Farewell Tea Party in Dover, Delaware.  He is the chairman of the Kent County Libertarian Party and a candidate for State Representative in Delaware's 32nd District.  The Farewell Rally was sponsored by the Diamond State Tea Party to mark the conclusion of Delaware's 2010 legislative session.  They hosted over twenty speakers this afternoon.  Way to go Diamond State Tea Party.  Here's Will's presentation.  Hopefully Will's video guy (also his dad) is a better campaign manager than he is a cameraman.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

SB293--The Parents Right to Know Act

SB293, the Parents Right to Know Act, is struggling to make it's way through the State Legislature despite the support of a very vocal and committed constituency including the Delaware Family Policy Council (DFPC).  You can read the bill here.  It's quite short.  You can get some background here at the 912 Delaware Patriots website.  Here's the synopsis.

This Bill would require schools to notify parents of information being taught to their children relating to human sexuality issues, sexual acts, profanity, violence, drugs and/or alcohol. Such policy would ensure parent/guardian notification no less than 48 hours prior to introduction or instructional use. Such policy would afford parents or guardians the flexibility to exempt their children from any portion of said curriculum or materials through notification to the school principal.

As a Libertarian, I have some reservations about the bill. I believe it's intent is honorable, but it strikes me as a means to facilitate yet one more special interest to control the agenda, in this case school curricula, by introducing still another layer of bureaucracy.  I understand the goals and share some of the concerns of the sponsors, but I am unhappy that they resort to adding more check boxes to be filled in by school administrators.  Here are some of my thoughts on the subject.

Parents have valid concerns with liberal special interests trying to force their agenda through the schools.

I know of no evidence that schools in Delaware are not already responsive to parents wishes without adding another layer of bureaucracy. (If anybody wants to cite some examples that I am unaware of, please reply to this post).

Libertarian principles would suggest that action at the school board level would be more appropriate where parents can get involved with their childrens' schools directly.

To take it further, Libertarians believe that government should not be in the education business in the first place other than perhaps to administer a voucher system where parents can choose religious education, arts oriented education, vocational education, traditional college prep education or even Satanic education if that's what they want.  OK, so maybe not Satanic education.  But pretty much anything the market can provide that parents want for their kids.  No more fighting the bureaucracy.  Don't like the curriculum?  Vote with your feet.  Choose a school run by people who share your values.  The market will sort this out.

We won't get from A to C over a single summer vacation.  That is, we won't go from where we are now, to Libertarian Nirvana overnight, but why not start now with a pilot voucher program, and grow it as it's success evolves?  Maybe a government school should always be an option for parents who want that.  That would be OK.

What are your thoughts?


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Get Active

I spent an hour at Legislative Hall this afternoon. I went to distribute copies of a couple of blog articles that my son Will and I had written in opposition to HB 198, the National Popular Vote bill. The bill passed the house last session and was on the Senate agenda today. Each of Delaware's twenty one state senators got a copy of the articles in an attempt to persuade them to defeat this bill. As it turned out, the bill was moved to tomorrow's agenda, so hopefully there's a chance that my efforts may influence some thinking on the subject.

I was a little bit anxious when I got there.  I definitely felt a little out of my element.  But I remembered something I heard Earnest Hancock say at the Libertarian National Convention this past Memorial Day.  "If your activism doesn't make you at least a little bit nervous, you're not radical enough".  I think Ernie Hancock is a very wise man.  What I did today was pretty tame stuff.  But I feel I pushed my own personal envelope.  And I'm not done pushing yet!

Last year, I would have sat at home frustrated that my government ignored me, and I would have been resigned to accepting anything they threw my way.  Not any more.  Thank you Ernest Hancock.  And thank you, Russ Murphy and the 912 Delaware Patriots for setting the example, and giving me and others like me, the courage to stand up and fight for what we believe.   Six months ago, I couldn't spell political activist.  Today, I are one.  Wake up America!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Meet Michael Badnarik--A Wake Up Call to Libertarians

This is Michael Badnarik, 2004 Libertarian candidate for president, speaking some harsh truths to fellow Libertarians at the Memorial Day Weekend Libertarian National Convention in St Louis. It was a very moving speech. I was there, and far from feeling depressed and demoralized, I came away inspired to do whatever I can to promote the principles we stand for. In the words of an ancient Hebrew adage: If not me, then who? If not now, then when?


Sunday, June 6, 2010

California's TopTwo Ballot Initiative: Possibly The Most Frightening Assault on Liberty in Our Lifetime

This Tuesday,  June 8, California voters will decide on Proposition 14, a ballot measure commonly referred to as Top Two.  The proposition calls for a single, open primary in which all candidates compete regardless of party affiliation, and all voters are eligible to cast a ballot.  Then, only the top two vote getters compete in the general election.  Proponents of Proposition 14 claim it will reduce partisanship, and increase voter participation.  Opponents dispute those claims citing results in Louisiana and Washington state where Top Two systems have been in effect.

Clearly, the worst feature of Proposition 14 is one that its advocates fail to mention at all.  If only the top two candidates go on to compete in the general election, third party candidates will essentially  be eliminated from general elections.  This proposal does not reform the election process as it claims.  It undermines it by reducing choice.  It may arguably expand primary participation, but only at a cost of extinguishing healthy, democratic competition  in the general election; the one that counts. 

The driving force behind this ballot initiative is collusion between the two major parties, the Republicans and the Democrats.  It is a shady deal with the goal of stifling debate and cementing the power of the major parties.  It is a shameful attempt to muzzle the potential voices of real change so that only the Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum views of the major parties can be heard in the debate.

What are they afraid of?  If they have better ideas, why try to stifle competition?  The answer is they worry that the public has had enough of business as usual.  Instead of competing fairly on an open field of ideas, they want to stack the deck in their favor.

And since incumbent politicians are responsible for Prop 14, they get to write the ballot summary that goes out to potential voters.  Here's how those politicians, greedily pursuing their own self interest, have described the ballot proposal:

Ballot title and label: "Elections. Increases Right to Participate in Primary Elections." Reforms the primary election process for congressional, statewide, and legislative races. Allows all voters to choose any candidate regardless of the candidate’s or voter’s political party preference. Ensures that the two candidates receiving the greatest number of votes will appear on the general election ballot regardless of party preference.
Official summary: Encourages increased participation in elections for congressional, legislative, and statewide offices by reforming the procedure by which candidates are selected in primary elections. Gives voters increased options in the primary by allowing all voters to choose any candidate regardless of the candidate’s or voter’s political party preference. Provides that candidates may choose not to have a political party preference indicated on the primary ballot. Provides that only the two candidates receiving the greatest number of votes in the primary will appear on the general election ballot regardless of party preference. Does not change primary elections for President, party committee offices and nonpartisan offices.

What they do tell you sounds pretty good on the surface.  What they don't tell you constitutes the greatest threat to our liberties and the democratic system that I have seen in my lifetime.  This has got to be the most egregious example of Orwellian Doublespeak I have ever heard. 

I urge those of you in California to vote NO on Proposition 14.  For those of you who are not Californians, beware.  What has been proposed in California could be coming to your state next.

For more information, go to StopTopTwo.Org, or go to Ballotpedia.Org.


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Jess McVay for Kent County Recorder of Deeds

As some of you know, I'm running for the Kent County Recorder of Deeds as a Libertarian.  I've just posted my Candidates Introductory Message on the Kent County Libertarian Online Forum.  I'd like to share it with you.  I think it's a little unusual.

Hi. I'm Jess McVay, and I am running for the Kent County Recorder of Deeds on the Libertarian Ticket. I'd like to tell you why.

I believe in Libertarian principles, and I believe that there has never been a time in this nation's history where those principles have been as important as they are today. But Libertarians are at a significant electoral disadvantage in this country simply by virtue of America's long tradition of two party politics. I believe that without that tradition, Libertarians would win majorities today in most political debates on the merits of our ideas. But many voters have never heard of a Libertarian. All they know is Democrats and Republicans

Even among voters who are attracted to libertarian principles, there are two major reasons why Libertarians don't get more votes than they do.

1) People don't think the Libertarian can win, and

2) If the Libertarian doesn't win, voters think they may have helped elect the guy they least wanted to see elected.

How do we overcome these disadvantages? I believe we overcome them by starting with baby steps. First, Libertarians have to get their names on the ballot. Voters need to see as many names on the ballot followed by the Libertarian Party ID as we can muster. This will reinforce the impression that Libertarians are a serious and credible force in Delaware politics. The Recorder of Deeds position represents another one of those baby steps. The election for Recorder of Deeds is among the least likely to be subject to the aforementioned perceptions about electability and consequences of defeat.

Pop quiz: Why is the Recorder of Deeds a partisan elective office?

Answer: I have absolutely no idea.

Does anyone believe that a Democrat would run the Office of the Recorder of Deeds in an ideologically different manner from the way a Republican would run it? Would a Libertarian's ideology dictate any different policies in the Recorder's office than the ideology of the Democrat or the Republican? I'm thinkin' your answer to both questions is no.

So how do most people decide who to vote for in the Recorder of Deeds race? Well, if they're registered Republican, they vote for the Republican. If they're registered Democrat, they vote for the Democrat. And if the other candidate wins, they don't lose one minutes sleep over it because it doesn't really matter, and they don't really care that much.

I believe that many voters, if not most of them, are fed up with politics as usual. They believe both parties have made a hash out of recent policies. There has never been an election where voters were more receptive to the idea of a third party candidate. Their attitude toward the Democrats and the Republicans is, "A pox on both your houses."

My candidacy offers those voters a low risk place to register their protest. If I win, great. They've sent a message to members of their party. Stop the stupidity. If I lose, who cares. It's only the Recorder of Deeds. Does this sound like a lunatic's approach to running for public office? Maybe so. But I think it makes perfect sense. If I win, I represent one small baby step on the path to demonstrating the electability of Libertarian candidates. And if I lose? Well I won't lose a minutes sleep over it because it really doesn't matter.

My campaign slogan suggests itself:

Vote for Jess McVay. What have you got to lose?

Visit the Kent County Libertarian Online Forum

There's a Kent County Libertarian Forum available now on the internet.  I plan to visit often and contribute regularly.  I hope you will do the same.  Here's the link.  Here's a link to my introductory post.


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Michael Bloomberg is a Tool

The award for the stupidest remark of the week goes to NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg for his speculation on the identity and motive of the perpetrator of the attempted Times Square bombing.  Click here for link.  Hey Mikee, it never occurred to you the guy might have been a Muslim terrorist?  You're such a dope!


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Get Ready for a New Cable Channel

Get ready America.  You are about to learn a whole lot more about wildlife in the Gulf of Mexico than you ever wanted to know.  The recent oil spill in the Gulf has provided the liberal mainstream press with its latest mission in life.  A blitzkrieg of anti-drilling propaganda is about to be unleashed on an unsuspecting public.    Now I don't mean to belittle the importance of the ecological disaster that may be evolving in the Gulf of Mexico.  I am a believer in offshore drilling, but even a proponent like me has to pause and ask the question, "Is it safe?"  You don't need to be an Environmentalist (capital E) to value the environment. 

Sensible people will want to find out what happened, how bad it will it get, what are the chances of it happening again, and can we learn from this accident to prevent the next one.  The Green movement in this country won't let on if they're smart, but I'll bet they're jumping for joy at the news.  I'll bet they are gearing up to demagogue this thing to death.  The eco-missionary evangelists will want no part of a sensible discussion.  This will become a mother lode of anti-drilling news "content" and sensationalism.  It will be the Chernobyl and the Three Mile Island for the Offshore Oil Industry. 

So get ready for the deluge.  You won't be able to turn on your TV or open a web page on your favorite news source without being bombarded with images of oil soaked birds.  Poor, helpless, innocent, dying oil soaked birds.  Oil soaked birds for breakfast, oil soaked birds for lunch, and oil soaked birds for dinner.  24/7 oil soaked birds.  The mainstream media are going to eat this stuff up.  "Who's gonna waste time on rational debate, when we've got visuals like these?" the news producers and the editors will say. 

We will not see the end of this story for a long time to come.  Your local cable provider has got to be cutting the deals and figuring out how to rearrange the channel line-up even as I write this.  Let's see.  We've got the Golf Channel.  Nothing but golf.  We've got The Weather Channel.  How interesting can you make the weather 24 hours a day?  We've got a couple of shopping channels.  Shop until the remote is too hot to handle.  We've got a bunch of food channels, and God knows we've got a whole slew of channels devoted to nothing but sports.  But get ready for the mother of all one dimensional programming alternatives.  They'll call it The Oil Soaked Wildlife Channel.  All oil soaked birds, all the time. Get out the manual for your TV.  You're going to have to learn how that V-Chip thingy works.  You're going to have to block this channel from your young impressionable kids lest they wind up with nightmares of slick stained seagulls and petroleum permeated pelicans.   And who wants to face the perpetually crying four year old begging for you to reassure him that Big Bird was not a victim of mayhem at the hands of the evil oil companies. 

Yes, it will get ugly America.  Ugly in a way that only the left can do ugly.  It's as if heaven has bestowed a gift on the Obama administration.  One more industry to demonize and subjugate to the will of the big government agenda.  Don't shed too many tears for the poor birds.  Save some for  American industry, capitalism and the free market system.  They're likely to be the real losers when this is over.


Be Careful What You Wish For

By all accounts, the Republicans are going to have a good year come November 2010.  I'd like to point out that this may turn out to be a disaster disguised as a blessing.  There are a lot of people like me who believe that our economy is on the verge of a collapse much worse than the one we just went through.  I believe that the Federal Government has been throwing money into a deep dark abyss in hopes of jump starting an ailing economy.  Why do I think the economy is failing?  Let me count the ways:

1.  Huge bailouts rewarding bad behavior on Wall Street have kept alive institutions that should have been allowed to fail.
2.  Relaxed accounting rules that have allowed banks to hide their insolvency by masking billions of bad debts on their books.
3.  A housing market with rising foreclosures and staving off further collapse in prices only because of government tax incentives, low interest rates and Fannie and Freddie buying up over 95% of all mortgages in the US.
4.  Jobless "recovery" with unemployment high and anticipated to stay that way for years.
5.  $787 billion in a stimulus package that failed to create jobs, and only added to the deficit.
6.  Annual budget deficits in excess of a trillion dollars a year for as far as the eye can see, adding to a national debt that is approaching 13 trillion dollars.  We are the next Greece!
7.  We're one failed Treasury auction (foreigners lose confidence and stop buying our debt) away from rising interest rates on our borrowing and a huge rise in interest payments as a percentage of our national budget.
8.  Unfunded entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare coming due, going cash flow negative, and the government passing new entitlements instead of reining in costs on existing ones.
9.  A new stock market bubble in the making based on speculation by big banks with money borrowed from the Fed at near zero interest rates, and with an implied bailout when it all goes kablooey 'cause they're too big to fail.  That bubble  will eventually burst and destroy trillions in phantom "wealth".  The banks will be saved by Uncle Sam.  Joe Sixpack, to the extent that he gets sucked in to the apparent rally in stocks, will be on his own as will the pension funds that pay his retirement.
10.  States and municipalities on the verge of bankruptcy.
11.  A government so broken by corruption, bad policy, and addiction to special interest campaign financing that they can only be part of the problem instead of part of the solution.

I could go on.  No, really.  That's not just a rhetorical phrase. I really could go on for a while.  But I want to get to my point. 

Mervyn King is the Governor of The Bank of England.  They're about to have an election over in the UK, and the Conservative Party is looking like they're going to push the Labor Party out of power.  Mr King said recently that whoever wins the next election will be OUT of power for a generation.  I was confused when I read that.  Doesn't he mean they'll be IN power for a generation?  No.  He meant OUT of power.  Things are so bad in Britain today that the new government will have to institute austerity measures to salvage the economy that will be so Draconian that they will quickly lose power to whomever will promise less pain to the electorate.  The unfortunate peddlers of austerity, ie. the grownups, will subsequently be banished from power for a generation. 

I said above that the US was the next Greece.  That's not entirely true.  First will come Portugal, Spain, Italy, Ireland, Iceland (there already), and the UK.  But make no mistake.  The United States holds a place well near the front of the line.  Our day will come as well.  If the present administration can hold the illusion together until November, they may inherit the biggest political windfall one could imagine.

Picture this.  An economy struggles to recover.  The administration does all it can to create the illusion of success just around the corner.  November comes and the Republicans reap huge gains due to voter outrage over the Healthcare bill and a myriad of other insults suffered at the hands of this administration.  Then, whether due to fiscally responsible and necessarily austere policies by a Republican Congress, or simply to the inevitable breakdown of the economic illusion, the economy goes off a cliff.  The Democrats blame the Republicans, an economically naive and hurting electorate buy the story, and we see Obama re-elected in 2012 with a bigger majority than he has today, and it's the fast track to a socialist America.

Now I'm not saying this scenario is inescapable.  But it is not impossible either.  I hope I'm wrong.  But expectations have a way of disappointing us.  We need to be very careful what we wish for.


The New Money Killers

I saw this picture on one of my favorite websites, The Automatic Earth.  I wanted to share it because I have a fondness for old photos like this, and because I thought we would all benefit by updating the photo a little. 

Harris & Ewing The Money Killers 1917
"Treasury Department, Bureau of Printing and Engraving. Destruction Committee. Maceration of old currency." The lady is Mrs. Louise Lester, "in charge of mutilation."

That is how they used to destroy the currency.  Now we have the Federal Reserve to do it!

The Money Killers 2010  Maceration of the new currency.
Move over Louise.  Were in charge of macerating the currency now!


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

End Run Around the Constitution for Electing the President

There are changes being contemplated in state legislatures all across the country. There is a popular movement afoot to alter the way in which we choose the President of the United States. Delaware is just one of many states to consider these changes.

Delaware HB 198 would diminish the voice of Delawareans in the selection of the President of the United States. The goals sound reasonable on first glance, but on further examination, the warts start to show. This bill is an attempt to ensure that the nationwide winner of the popular vote could not lose the presidency to someone who got fewer popular votes, but more Electoral College votes. This is what happened in the Bush vs Gore election of 2000.

It accomplishes this by coordinating legislation in the various states to award all their Electoral College votes to whichever candidate wins not the statewide popular vote, but the nationwide popular vote. This is a nationwide movement to get as many individual state legislatures as possible to pass similar bills. Delaware HB 198 is an attempt to circumvent the Constitution without formally amending it. The Electoral College mechanism remains intact, but the states change the way they allocate their votes. Here is the synopsis of the bill from the Delaware Legislature website.

The goal may be appealing, ie. the popular vote determines the winner, but there are a couple of problems. First, even if Delaware votes overwhelmingly for one candidate, all of our Electoral College votes would go to a different candidate if that candidate won the nationwide popular vote. The other problem with the legislation is that candidates would have no incentive to campaign in small states or cater to their interests because their Electoral College votes could be secured by appealing to regions with greater populations. They could promise the people of California, New York, Texas etc. whatever they wanted, even to the detriment of smaller states like Delaware, without jeopardizing their Delaware electoral votes. This disenfranchises small states like Delaware.

As appealing as the idea of popular election of the president sounds, there are elements on both sides of the political spectrum who object to the concept. Here is a blogpost from one of Delaware's more liberal websites. Here is one from a conservative site. What do you know. The spirit of bipartisanship lives.

If you agree with me that this bill mutes the voices of Delawareans in choosing a president, please write your State Representative and State Senator and tell them you do NOT support HB 198.

State Senate Contact Info

State Representative Contact Info


Give Me That Damn Gavel!

This is for my friend Dick.


Friday, April 16, 2010

Understanding the Charges Against Goldman--This Could be the Start of Something Huge

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Ghandi Was Right

I'm very encouraged by the recent ridicule that has been heaped upon Tea Party protesters. This point of view might surprise you, but let me explain. It used to be that the media went out of their way not to even acknowledge our existence. Remember how sparse the coverage was of the September 12 2009 rally in Washington DC? That's certainly changed these days. Even our Dear Leader has starting making jokes about us. Watch this:

I've cited this quotation before in a different context, but it is certainly appropriate here. Ghandi said:

First they ignore you.

Then they laugh at you.

Then they fight you.

Then you win.

So get ready Patriots. The next stage might get ugly. Be prepared for a fight between now and November.


Monday, April 12, 2010

The Approach of Danger

"At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow?

Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth in their military chest; with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years.

At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide." Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010

Introducing Peter Schiff

Peter Schiff is the president of Euro Pacific Capital and a 2010 Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Democratic Senator Chris Dodd.   He was an economics adviser to Ron Paul during his campaign for president. 

The first of these videos is his blog from 4 April where he responds to the ABC interview with Alan Greenspan on their This Week Sunday program.  He blames Greenspan for promoting the bubble that ultimately led to the financial meltdown.  He was appalled by Greenspan's denial of responsibility and for saying that hardly anyone saw it coming and that those who did were just lucky.  He challenges Greenspan to a debate on the subject.  The following videos are clips of Schiff predicting the meltdown way back when everyone else dismissed the possibility.  I think this guy deserves our support for his election bid at least as much as Scott Brown did.


The information in this last video sounds like common knowledge now, but keep in mind, Peter made this very prescient speech in 2006.