And as you will see, this month’s review and discussions do nothing to prove that this thesis is wrong in any way:
1) If democracy finally dies anywhere this country it will probably start in New York City. People there can no longer smoke in any “public” locations including parks even if they are the only person in that park. Former mayor Bloomberg tried to dictate what New Yorkers should drink and eat under the cover of forcing everyone to be healthier.
But the new mayor is taking the dictatorship thing another step forward. Ther New York Post recently reported that the city is giving money to four different health advocacy groups to start exerting pressure on developers and landlords to implement smoking bans not only in the public areas of their buildings but also in the individual apartments and condos within their buildings, i.e. force people how to personally behave in their own homes.
While the current effort is voluntary, who knows how this mission creep will end up eventually. Will inspectors break down your doors to see if you have any evidence of smoking? Will the city put smoke detectors throughout buildings to detect the smallest whiff of smoke? Will people plant cigarette smoke near a noisy or obnoxious neighbor’s apartment to try and get them evicted? The abuse potential is substantial, all for an unchecked theory that someone smoking in their own home can adversely affect someone else sitting in their own home.
Look, I think smoking is stupid and idiotic. It can do nothing but be bad for one’s health. But how about we take the money that has the potential for Gestapo-like behavior of New York city government and try to get people to voluntarily stop smoking altogether? That solves any number of problems without trampling the Constitution in the process. If a landlord or developer wants to ban smoking from their buildings, allow them to do that VOLUNTARILY.
Don’t want to live in a building that allows tenants to smoke in their own homes, then don’t live in that building, simple as that. What next? Home inspections on whether you are getting enough fiber in your diet? Home inspections to determine if you actually use that treadmill in your closet? There are so many better uses of that money than spying on the smoking habits of individuals...in their own homes.
2) We have previously reported on how Chinese government hackers had broken into Federal government personnel databases and had stolen secret and personal information on millions and millions of current and former government employees. The Wall Street Journal characterized the hack as of paramount importance: "The Obama administration may have allowed a cyber 9/11 at home.”
The stealing of the information is so bad on many levels: it opens the door for identify theft of millions of Americans, it exposes the identities of our spies around the world, endangering their lives and the lives of their families, it opens up the possibility of blackmailing important Federal employees, etc. Yes, this was a very serious government screw up.
But as with most government screw ups, no one is taking responsibility for the hack. During Senate hearings on the breach, hearings that were described as heated, the Director of the Federal government agency that was hacked, Katherine Archuleta, tried to deflect any heat and blame from herself saying, “If there is anyone to blame, it is the perpetrators.” In other words, don’t blame me for not doing my job, blame those that exposed me for the poor job I was doing. Insane, in any similar job in private industry she would have been fired long ago. But instead, she blames the criminals for stealing what she was supposed to protect.
3) The Supreme Court ruled in favor of U.S. raisin growers recently by striking down a law from the Depression that somehow allowed the Federal government to seize raisin crops at less than market value from farmers in a convoluted line of reasoning to maintain market prices. This case came about when the Federal Raisin Administrative Committee tried to prevent a California farmer from selling 47% of his raisins on the market.
Two pieces of insanity here:
- Why should the Federal government ever be involved in trying to regulate the amount of raisins going to market, especially using a law that is probably 80 years old and is from a different world than we live in today?
- And why, oh why, is the American taxpayer paying to maintain an entity as stupid as the Raisin Administrative Committee? Another reason why we have a national debt of over $18 TRILLION, we are paying for a standing raisin committee.
4) Speaking of stupid and useless uses of taxpayer money, consider the reality that someone, some taxpayer funded employee at the Health and Human Services Department for the Federal government recently published a July 4th post on the Department’s blog. Okay, why not you say?
But the blog post offered advice and potential conversation scenarios on how to defend Obama Care at this year’s 4th of July families gatherings. The post is entitled: “Tips for Talking to Your Family about the Affordable Care Act this Fourth of July.” Really? How many families do we really think will be having this conversation over the grill this year? And of the few that are, how many actually know that this post exists?
Just another example of government employees trying to justify their jobs with useless activity that has no benefit to a single taxpayer.
5) I do love it when politicians eat their own. A few weeks ago, Obama claimed that the U.S. is far more respected on the world stage now than when he took office. We took that argument apart pretty quickly, showing how countries around the world were either laughing at his administration or taking advantage of its ineptness. HIs statement and our rebuttal can be seen at:
Now it seems like we have a famous Democrat and liberal politician that agrees with us. You know you are having a bad day when former President Jimmy Carter, probably the worst President in my lifetime up until the current one, has a polar opposite view of the Obama foreign policy record: “I can’t think of many nations in the world where we have a better relationship now than when (Obama) took over. I’m not saying it’s his fault, but we have not improved our relationship with individual countries and I would say that the United States’ influence and prestige and strength in the world is probably lower now than it was six or seven years ago.”
Ouch, this from a former President and Democrat.
6) One last piece of insanity for today, a Federal government screwup that is very serious and potentially life threatening for every American. A Mexican drug cartel recently hijacked a U.S. government truck in Mexico and stole 11,500 valid border crossing documents from the U.S. government. The truck carrying the visas and documents were headed the U.S. consulates in Monterrey and Guadalajara.
According to Breitbart News: The hijacking took place on June 7, near the Mexican border city of Matamoros. The truck had just left the U.S. Logistics Center in Brownsville when the armed robbery took place, a government official close to the case who spoke with Breitbart Texas confirmed. The 11,500 stolen border crossing cards are non-immigrant visas the size of a credit card. Mexican nationals use them for business or leisurely travel within the border zones of the United States.
The visas were destined for the individuals who had gone through the visa process and had been approved in the consular offices in Monterrey and Guadalajara.
This is obviously a serious breach of security that could lead to any number of bad outcomes:
- The cartels could sell the documents at high prices to people wanting to illegally immigrate into the U.S.
- The cartels could use the documents themselves to facilitate their criminal activities within this country.
- And the worse scenario of all, the cartels could sell the documents to ISIS or other terrorists, giving those terrorists easy entry into this country to carry out their violent battle within our borders.
Or as Breitbart accurately put it: “This administration is utterly incompetent.”
That will do it for today’s insanity. Government visa documents stolen, government computers massively hacked, getting dissed by a fellow Democrat, paying for July 4th and raisin advice, and more. As always, you cannot make up the many failings of the American political class. More tomorrow.
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