Category Archives: Constitution

The Obama Administration Continues To Play Favorites With Unions

We are all well aware that the Obama administration is beholden to the unions like SEIU and the UAW who gave millions to then Senator Obama during his campaign for the White House. However, what many may not know, or have forgotten is the fact that Barack Obama signed three executive orders that would make it easier to favor unions and unionized companies.

Here is the synopsis of the three pro-union executive orders signed early in 2009:

The first executive order requires employers with federal contracts above $100,000 in value to post a notice in the workplace informing their employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), including the right to join a union. This order also repeals Executive Order 13201, issued by President Bush in 2001, that required federal contractors and subcontractors to post so-called “Beck notices.” Such notices, named after the Supreme Court’s decision in Communication Workers v. Beck, 487 U.S. 735 (1988) informed employees covered under the NLRA that they could not be required to join a union or maintain union membership in order to retain their jobs and that employees who are subject to a union security clause and choose not to be union members may object to the purposes for which mandatory union dues are used.

The second order applies to federal contractors who provide services to government buildings. While there are several exemptions, under this new executive order, when a federal agency changes contractors, the new contractor will be required to offer jobs to the non-supervisory employees of its predecessor. This order is designed to try to ensure that when a unionized contractor is replaced, its successor will be obliged under existing labor laws to bargain with the original contractor’s labor union.

The third order prevents federal contractors from being reimbursed in federal funds for money spent to oppose (or support) union organizing efforts among their employees, which could violate first amendment rights if ever challenged in a court of law due to government interference and a company’s freedom of speech.

That’s why the latest news coming from the Obama administration is very disconcerting since they are planning on supporting proposals that will favor unions and unionized companies bidding on federal contracts, which will only increase the size of the government, the amount of bureaucracy, and the cost of contracts.  However, it’s not anything we don’t already know since Obama’s philosophy seems more like “Go big, or go… you know something? just go big because you won’t have a home by the time our administration is through.”

Here’s more information regarding the proposal via the Daily Caller:

The proposals, collectively known as “High Road Contracting Policy,” were first reported earlier this month. The basic elements of the policy would give preference to companies bidding on federal contracts that pay their hourly workers a “living wage” and provide health insurance, employer-funded pension plans and paid sick days.

Following the report Republicans slammed the proposal, with Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma referring to it as “backdoor card check.” Other critics, led by Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, worry the new rules would increase the cost of government contracting by as much as 20 percent, or more than $100 billion annually, while further slowing the procurement process.

Proponents of the proposals, including the Center for American Progress and the Economic Policy Institute, argue government contracting should be used as a vehicle for expanding the middle class and many of the workers that would be impacted by the changes end up costing the government more through public assistance programs such as Medicaid and food stamps. David Madland of CAP also pointed to studies on the state and local level that show no cost increase following the implementation of similar policies.

However, the White House did admit that contracting costs would increase if this proposal went through.  Pardon me if I’m a little skeptical and a little tired of unions being used as the end-all-be-all of the middle class.  Most of the middle class are professional workers or even blue collared workers who don’t belong to unions.  Take for example my father – he’s a mechanic but doesn’t belong to the UAW, much like many of his co-workers.  Does he make a ton of money? No, he’s just simply middle class and thus it is completely disingenuous for anybody to equate unions with the middle class at all times.  It seems as if the current crop of bureaucrats would love nothing more than for the true middle class to be unionized and therefore controlled and dependent upon the federal government.

And lest we forget some of the eye-opening clips of Obama speaking with organizations like SEIU:

{My favorite part is Obama telling SEIU that they should want a leader who can tell the truth… Interesting that he’s now been caught in many lies, most recently ACORN}

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Filed under ACORN, Big Labor, Constitution, Corruption, Economy, Hypocrisy, Obama, Obama Administration, Progressivism, Unions

Is Maryland Ready For A New Day?

My twitter moniker and the name of this site have a lot to do with where I currently reside, and obviously that’s the crabbing state of Maryland.  In fact the little play on words is the fact that I, as well as so many others, are crabby in regards to the political situation facing us and the generations coming up behind us.

I recently attended a tea party in front of Governor Martin O’Malley’s mansion, and the sentiment was a passionate one shared by everyone standing there on that cold, wintry night; we are tired of one party rule in Maryland, the gerrymandering, and the corruption.  This wasn’t the only time I have experienced this sentiment in the blue state of Maryland – after I attended a town hall held by Ben Cardin on the health care debate, I asked several people if they had ever done anything like this and 99% said NO.  They had never protested, they had never been politically active, and many were too scared to speak out about their principles because the state was so liberal.  I have discovered there are many conservatives, maybe even more so than liberals who are living in blue states – but gerrymandered districts or those who stay quiet and don’t vote allow for one party rule.

There is one particular individual who has been in office for 28 years (the same age as me!) He is over 70 years old and continues to make comments that are offensive and lack common sense. I am talking about the  House Majority Leader, Steny Hoyer.  It would be a tough road to hoe running against such an established politician when he already brings home the bacon to district 5 and holds senior positions, however, it isn’t impossible.  Steny Hoyer has made a lot of slip-ups recently, whether it is being tied to Nancy Pelosi, authoring an article that called protesters un-American, saying “it’s good for people to make money because then they can pay taxes”, or showing us how out-of-touch he really is when stating he didn’t believe in a pay freeze for members of Congress.  Comments and actions such as the ones Steny is making, show the public that he has always been about himself; a partisan politician that wants to stay in power for as long as possible.  Acting in such a manner during a time of unpredictability and hardship in the lives of so many Americans gives people pause come election time.

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Now is the time when people are truly looking for change and for politicians that stand on principle.  I know that politicians and principle may seem like an oxymoron to many, but there is one candidate who is as down-to-earth, as honest, and as charismatic as anybody I have met even in national politics recently.  His name is Charles Lollar.  Charles has the uncanny ability to speak off the cuff and from the heart.  He has a passion and a desire to serve the people of Maryland and not his own interests.  He has a wonderful family, is a marine in the reserves who served in Kosovo – and most attractive of all – he has worked in the private sector for most, if not all, of his life.

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If you are interested in changing things in Maryland or if you are at least willing to give somebody who is fresh and still has their integrity intact, a chance, please check out Charles’ site or help donate to the Money Bomb so we can dump Steny.  Any help – even if it is just getting the word out to others would be greatly appreciated.  Charles is an up and comer that people need to watch – Trust Me!

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Filed under Congress, Constitution, Establishment, Tea Party

1st Ever National Tea Party Convention

It’s been a week since I first made my journey south to Nashville, TN, to attend the first ever National Tea Party Convention put on by Tea Party Nation (TPN), and unfortunately, due to rescheduled flights and Snowmageddon, I haven’t had the opportunity to write about it before now — so here it goes:

I have to honestly say that the Tea Party has been characterized and painted in such a dishonest way by the media.  Everyone I met was incredibly excited to be involved in politics and their government.  There were people from all genders, age groups, and yes, there were minorities at the conference. The tea party represents a broad and expanding group of Americans who are simply “sick and tired of being sick and tired,” with their government and their representatives. {Only 600 tickets were sold to the event so this was just a small representation}

It is accurate to say that many who are part of the tea party movement are not fond of Obama’s policies or his ideology, but it would be disingenuous to stop there.  Most tea partiers are trying to return this country to a republic rather than the oligarchy it is heading towards.  The constitution is the law of the land and should be adhered to and treated as such.  The members of this grassroots movement are average, everyday Americans; many of which have jobs or are retired.  They pay taxes, work hard, believe in personal responsibility, a hand up not a hand out, fiscal responsibility, small government, and strong national defense.

I guess I have difficulty understanding how the media could paint citizens engaging in debate, in civics, in government, and expressing peaceful dissent, as being extremists, nationalists, and racists.  What is so wrong with expressing the principles you believe in?  Protesters were “in” when they were protesting the Iraq War and anything Bush; holding up swastikas, BusHitler signs, and even making a fake guillotine with a Bush head.  But now the media doesn’t like the dissent when it goes against the very principles they espouse.  There is something very wrong when the 4th column can’t remain objective.  I have no problem if you are liberal and in the media, but when you are ‘on duty’ act like it, then take your opinions and ideology home with you.

With that being said – there will always be people on both sides of the aisle that are considered extreme or fringe, which is normal.  The left and right both have their fair share to deal with when it comes to that, but nobody should categorically try to make an assumption of the whole based on its parts.

I personally hope that the tea party remains an independent entity and doesn’t fall into the trap of becoming an established political group.  What is so attractive to the movement is its appeal to all parties that share the same conservative principles.  Many would be surprised that many Democrats (i.e. JFK Democrats) are more conservative especially when it comes to fiscal policy.  Independents are also conservative in different aspects.  I, for one, have never been part of a registered party and have always considered myself unaffiliated because the establishment on both sides of the aisle needs reform.

All in all, I had a blast, and the entire convention surpassed my expectations.  I met a lot of great people, and had tons of fun – believe it or not, Conservatives definitely know how to have a good time! 🙂 There are lots of people working hard to put the right people into office so we the people can clean up our government.  It’s important to note that many involved are still very new to politics and grassroots activism so mistakes and missteps will be made along the way – but as long as we can remember Calvin Coolidge’s words referring to Persistence, the Tea Party can become a force to be reckoned with:

“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.
The slogan “Press On” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”

Here are some photos of the event:

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Many people were excited to see Sarah Palin on Saturday – one of her fans taped her poster to his balcony!

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The Tea Party Presser where both Judson Phillips & Mark Skoda spoke – the MSM was there in droves

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The Presser was held at lunchtime on Friday – Angela McGlowan would speak later that evening and give a wonderful speech and also announce her candidacy as a Republican running in Mississippi. The other men next to her were part of a documentary crew that have already made one movie about the tea party.

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There were so many great people who attended and I was afforded the opportunity to have lunch and hang out with Adam Andrzejewski who unfortunately lost the Republican primary for Governor in IL, but I have a feeling there is more in store for him!

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The men who wore costumes from our founding era were awesome – many of them were in the Tea Party documentary and it made the event a lot of fun.

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Here is a very small portion of the line awaiting Sarah Palin and the tea party banquet on Saturday night (people were in line by 3:30/4pm when the doors weren’t evening opening until 6pm).

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Sarah Palin arrives to eat dinner at the banquet – We got some great seats that were about 50 feet away.

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We got to hear a new song for the movement, I believe it was called “American Heart” by Jon David.

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Sarah Palin begins her speech (I had to take these pictures with my blackberry so the lighting is very bad).

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The view from the jumbotron

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Top off the night by celebrating a successful convention with people like Andrew Breitbart, Glenn Reynolds (aka Instapundit), and so many others – Saturday night was a blast!

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Of course we had to end the night by signing the official flag for the Tea Party convention. {that’s my friend Burnsy BTW}

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Filed under Constitution, Economy, Establishment, Government Spending, Media, MSM, National Debt, National Security, Progressivism, Protests, RINO, Sarah Palin, Tea Party

Crikey! The Government Is Monitoring Twitter & Facebook

*Banging head against the keyboard* – the government is monitoring the internet more now than ever.  If I wasn’t so politically charged, I probably wouldn’t care, nor would I really hear much about this, but much of my twitter and Facebook use is for political activism and pontificating on the issues of the day. If that gets me into trouble with the government, then so be it.  I’d rather get carted off for practicing my first amendment right of free speech than for doing something that was truly illegal like stealing my neighbor’s car. 

Both parties are at fault for this obvious breach of personal privacy, but I believe one could make the argument where there are certain circumstances that warrant wire tapping or other similar techniques if it saves lives and stops terrorism.  However, the slippery slope is easily becoming not just a theory, but a reality.  I do not see the need to monitor Facebook or twitter.  These are mainly tools used by citizens to get short points across that consist of 140 characters.  Some people tweet articles, some tweet opinions, some tweet their daily activities, while others tweet photos – why should that be monitored by the government?  Does the government seriously care that I just got back in touch with Sally Muckenfuch from 3rd grade? 

I don’t want to seem like a ‘Debbie Downer’ but would terrorists really be using twitter? “Just strapped a bomb onto my back, headed to airport, can’t wait for virgins.” I am not naive, either, and believe that anything could be used for the wrong purpose, but twitter just doesn’t seem like the place to strategize and plan an attack.  Information can definitely be sent out to meet up, but whole terror plots are difficult to type in 140 characters or less, let alone hope that ADD riddled people already tweeting will follow.  Based on the latest NY Times editorial, however, that is not the intent of the government’s monitor at all though:

The government is increasingly monitoring Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites for tax delinquents, copyright infringers and political protesters. A public interest group has filed a lawsuit to learn more about this monitoring, in the hope of starting a national discussion and modifying privacy laws as necessary for the online era.

Wired magazine reported in October:

America’s spy agencies want to read your blog posts, keep track of your Twitter updates — even check out your book reviews on Amazon.

In-Q-Tel, the investment arm of the CIA and the wider intelligence community, is putting cash into Visible Technologies, a software firm that specializes in monitoring social media. It’s part of a larger movement within the spy services to get better at using ”open source intelligence” — information that’s publicly available, but often hidden in the flood of TV shows, newspaper articles, blog posts, online videos and radio reports generated every day.

This is what scares common sense independents about the government — we allow them to have more power than ever should have been necessary and our rights and personal freedoms continue to disappear right from under us because we allow them to be taken PROGRESSIVELY… funny how we appear to be turning into those much storied frogs that are unable to jump out of a pot of luke warm water after it has boiled.

And as Noel Sheppard of Newbusters points out, the fact that this isn’t being reported as much as it would be if a Republican was in office, is just another hypocritical chink in the liberal media’s armor:

So be careful with your next Tweet or Facebook status, for you never know who’s watching.

On the other hand, it will be interesting to see how Obama-loving media follow this story.

After all, the press were constantly bashing the Bush White House concerning electronic surveillance designed to protect the nation from terrorist attacks.

The Times might be pleased with itself by publishing an editorial on this subject in its opinion section, but under the previous administration, this would have resulted in a front page story with thousands of words.

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Filed under Big Brother, Constitution, Double Standards, Hypocrisy, Media, MSM, Progressivism

Cass Sunstein Is Certifiable; Absolutism, First Amendment New Deal & More Executive Power

Cass Sunstein is one of the scarier of Obama’s czars and the fact that he was confirmed by the Senate makes it 10x worse!  Sunstein may be a very nice man, but when it comes to ideology, theory, ideas, and his views on the constitution, it makes me want to pull my hair out and scream.  I’m not sure what it is about the world of academia and the absolute detachment from reality that many hold, but it’s time for America to get past the status  of holding ivy league degrees; the superficial, and vote for people with real world experience.  Teachers do live in the real world, but my question would be whether not they have actually worked in a job or a place where they have implemented these ideas first to see if they actually work and help people, not hurt.

Besides, Cass Sunstein’s idea of Internet regulation, whereby a panel or individual of some sort would decide what is inaccurate or false and ban content via their own opinion (more detail on this can be found in his book entitled On Rumors), he has also argued that animals should be able to have a lawyer and sue humans, and guns and hunting should be banned.  There is much more to Cass Sunstein and his regulatory ideas in Nudge, another book penned by the newly approved czar.

More information about Sunstein is slowly but surely beginning to trickle out as time passes.  Cass Sunstein is a proponent of absolutism which really is a sick, twisted theory of “no liberty without dependency”:

You owe your life — and everything else — to the sovereign. The rights of subjects are not natural rights, but merely grants from the sovereign. There is no right even to complain about the actions of the sovereign, except insofar as the sovereign allows the subject to complain. These are the principles of unlimited, arbitrary, and absolute power, the principles of such rulers as Louis XIV. Intellectuals have assiduously promoted them; think of Jean Bodin and Thomas Hobbes.

A new intellectual champion of absolutism has now emerged. Mild-mannered University of Chicago law professor Cass Sunstein has been advancing the radical notion that all rights — including rights usually held to be “against” the state, such as the right to freedom of speech and the right not to be arbitrarily imprisoned or tortured — are grants from the state. In a book co-authored with Stephen Holmes, The Cost of Rights, he argued that “all legal rights are, or aspire to be, welfare rights,” that is, positive grants from the state. There is no difference in kind between the right not to be tortured and the right to taxpayer-subsidized dental care.
In his new book, The Second Bill of Rights, Sunstein seeks to give constitutional status to welfare rights. The title comes from Franklin Roosevelt’s 1944 State of the Union address, in which he proclaimed that “necessitous men are not free men” and proposed a “second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all.” Among the rights FDR proposed were the rights to “a useful and remunerative job,” “a decent home,” “adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health,” “adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment,” and “a good education.”

To further understand the radical nature of Sunstein’s theories, it’s imperative that we also take a look at his proposed First Amendment New Deal which would act as a new Fairness Doctrine, following the same lines of his Internet regulation ideas.

President Obama’s newly confirmed regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein, drew up a “First Amendment New Deal,” a new “Fairness Doctrine” that would include the establishment of a panel of “nonpartisan experts” to ensure “diversity of view” on the airwaves.

Sunstein compared the need for the government to regulate broadcasting to the moral obligation of the U.S. to impose new rules that outlawed segregation.

Until now, Sunstein’s radical proposal, set forth in his 1993 book “The Partial Constitution,” received no news media attention and scant scrutiny.

In the book – Sunstein outwardly favors and promotes the “fairness doctrine,” the abolished FCC policy that required holders of broadcast licenses to present controversial issues of public importance in a manner the government deemed was “equitable and balanced.”

Sunstein introduces what he terms his “First Amendment New Deal” to regulate broadcasting in the U.S.

It appears that Sunstein and Lloyd are two peas in a pod.  Both of these men believe that commercial broadcasting companies should fund strictly public broadcasting.  He also proposes more “democratic” means of control like “compulsory public-affairs programming, right of reply, content review by nonpartisan experts or guidelines to encourage attention to public issues and diversity of view.”

Believe it or not, that’s not the worst to come out of Sunstein’s mouth or from his pen lately.  Sunstein actually believes that Obama and those working as part of his administration should interpret federal laws, not the federal courts.

“There is no reason to believe that in the face of statutory ambiguity, the meaning of federal law should be settled by the inclinations and predispositions of federal judges. The outcome should instead depend on the commitments and beliefs of the President and those who operate under him,” argued Sunstein.

This statement was the central thesis of Sunstein’s 2006 Yale Law School paper, “Beyond Marbury: The Executive’s Power to Say What the Law Is.” The paper, in which he argues the president and his advisers should be the ones to interpret federal laws.

See why I’m pulling my hair out and screaming? This is sheer insanity and the man still argues that this is all constitutional!

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Filed under Big Brother, Constitution, Czars, Establishment, Fairness Doctrine, FCC, Media, Net Neutrality, Obama Administration, Progressivism, Radicals, Sunstein

FCC Implementing Net Nuetrality Rule (Monday)

Tomorrow, the FCC will make an announcement that it proposes to implement a new net neutrality rule for the Internet. We had been warned previously that rather than a new Fairness Doctrine, other rules/laws would be passed that could potentially affect content of the Internet and over the airwaves. 

Julius Genachowski, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, plans to propose a new so-called net neutrality rule Monday that could prevent telecommunications, cable and wireless companies from blocking Internet applications, according to sources at the agency.

Genachowski will discuss the rules Monday during a keynote speech at The Brookings Institute. He isn’t expected to drill into many details, but the proposal will specifically be for an additional guideline on how operators like AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast can control what goes on their networks. That additional guideline would prevent the operators from discriminating, or act as gatekeepers, of Web content and services.

The guidelines in place today have been criticized by applications developers like Google and public interest groups for not going far enough to clarify what is defined as discriminatory behavior. Comcast is fighting in federal court an FCC ruling that it violated the guidelines by blocking a video application last year. AT&T and Verizon have said existing rules are sufficient, and more regulation is unnecessary. However, they have also said they wouldn’t fight against an additional guideline that focuses on discriminatory behavior.

Julius is not somebody who is non-partisan either.  As any appointees, they have connections to a political party and ideology.  Julius was Obama’s communications and Internet campaign manager during the 2008 election.  As we have discovered with Mark Lloyd and Cass Sunstein, Genachowski is probably no different. 

After reading various comments and arguments for this rule, I can understand how people believe net neutrality would be a good thing.  Most people who are unaware think that more regulation will actually help the consumer, and if that truly is the case, I would be all the more for it.  However, cable, phone, Internet, and wireless companies are some of the most highly regulated companies in the United States, but people still despise them.  Since there is already so much government interference wouldn’t it be safe to say that the government would inevitably make things worse rather than better? 

One issue at play is that enterprises like AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint, etc. use “public” airwaves but they pay billions of dollars in licensing fees for the privilege of using the AIR! The government is already regulating that “air” and the argument has to do with the amount of regulation that already exists. To force mobile carriers to treat all internet traffic the same is ridiculous because this kind of free for all will crash many of the major carriers’ networks! There is a natural free market revolution going on which is allowing these private companies to upgrade their networks to meet the demands of their customers. Government intervention is not the answer. AT&T is responding to anger in NYC and SF by adding tons of capacity to meet the needs of its users before they leave AT&T for another carrier. If the government forces net neutrality on wireless carriers, all iPhone and smart phone users will take all of the bandwidth in order to watch streaming video and music, which sounds fine if you are an iPhone user but think about the downside and unintended consequences. If these major wireless carriers are forced to treat all traffic the same there will be no more unlimited data packages for $35/month. They will start to charge per MB in order to ensure their networks dont crash for all of their users. There were no wireless data networks to speak of 10 years ago and now we have 3G and 4G LTE coming everywhere within the next 18 months. The free market is doing this not a govt mandate, unfortunately, what a lot of people have failed to recognize is the reality and universality of the “law of unintended consequences”.

Which brings to the forefront, the second issue: at face value, net neutrality sounds like a great idea. Unfortunately, nearly everything the government does ultimately warps the motives of companies and individuals in a bad way.  The presumption by most is that the government actually has the ability to “make things better”. In my experience, that is almost never the case.  The slippery slope argument is not fear-mongering, when one merely needs to look back through history to see plenty of laws that were intended for the right purpose, which were used for something incredibly distorted and wrong. The content originally regulated would most likely be something routine and mundane – very basic data, however, it could suddenly change to ideological content.  Mark Lloyd has been talking about diversity on the Internet and over the airwaves, as well as anti-discrimination.  Sunstein, the newly appointed regulation czar feels the same way and would like to regulate the Internet based on any perceived falsehoods – who decides what is false and what is not – there is too much room for political bias. 

If this is implemented officially, I want to hear what those lauding it say after 5 years, and after majorities switch hands to the other party.  I better not hear any outcry from the liberals if Republicans come into power and continue to use net neutrality…

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Filed under Big Brother, Constitution, Czars, Fairness Doctrine, FCC, MSM, Net Neutrality, Obama Administration, Progressivism

Uniting Against RINOs

This post is really just a plug for a new website that has been created for Independent Conservatives who are tired of Republicans In Name Only (RINO).  Those who would easily sell out their own family for corporate funding, lobbies, and their own power-hungry nature. 

As many recall a couple month ago, Mark Kirk (R-IL) voted for Cap and Trade in the House of Representatives.  He, along with 7 other Republicans, voted for the bill that made no mention of coal, nuclear energy, or our own oil resources.  The bill was a monstrous mechanism to control the lives of Americans and tax the middle class, however, the Cap and Traitors, whom are aptly named, went ahead and voted against their principles and their constituents. 

Mark Kirk is now trying to run for the open Senate seat that Roland Burris and Blagojevich tainted recently.  I could care less if the person who wins the seat is a Democrat or a Republican, as long as they stand on principle and not on power and greed.  It’s time for the establishment to be sent packing and Mark Kirk is the epitome of the problem in DC. 

To check out the site Republicans United Against Mark Kirk For US Senate – click here.

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Filed under Cap and Tax, Cap and Trade, Congress, Constitution, Establishment, Republicans, RINO