I just got an email from Dick Durbin, one of our Illinois Senators, informing people that they would like to add an amendment to the US Constitution to give Congress the power to limit corporate contributions to political campaigns.  They do not mention unions or other types of groups in this, so from the get go, you can see that they are not serious about limiting special interests from campaigns, just corporate interests. 

Aside from this, I have a couple of problems with this amendment idea.  First, is it the money from special interests that is really the problem, or is it the politicians who are being bought by the money?  Or does it go even deeper to the idea that the federal government is involving itself and tinkering in areas that it does not have authority given to it from our US Constitution?  If the federal government was not involving itself in many of these areas, there would be no need for special interests to be trying to get in their say so on these issues, at least at the federal level.  Is it possible that the writers of the Constitution specifically limited the federal government to limited powers for this very reason?

My other problem with this amendment is that, if the federal government is going to continue messing in these areas, and no one is going to stop them, then special interests do deserve a say so in issues that are going to affect them directly.  To take this away from anyone, is simply wrong.  You only have to place yourself in the position of the interest that is going to be affected to see this.  If I owned a business, and some people in the federal government started talking about making changes such as new taxes or regulations and it was going to affect my business personally, I want to be able to support the candidate that is going to work in my best interest and protect me from government intervention.  I can't imagine that being taken away from me.

I am all for getting rid of what many call crony capitalism.  But the method used to get rid of it is where I think Sen. Dick Durbin is wrong on this.  If you truly want to change things meaningfully for the better, while preserving our freedoms, you have to go to the root of the problem which is taking away the need for special interests to be involved at all.  You get rid of that, what would the corporations be trying to buy and what would the politicians be being bought for.  The change that needs to be made is to get the federal government out of areas it does not have power over and their would be no need for special interests to be involved at all.

I have intentionally been vague when referring to the areas that the federal government has been involving itself that it should not.  The reason for this is that there are just so many.  If you want to learn more about this, take a look at the Constitution Article 1 Section 8 to see this list of powers that the Congress has power overTake a look at this video that does an excellent job of talking about the powers of government.  And while you are at it, watch the other videos in this series that talk about other topics involving the Constitution, such as the general welfare clause.  Enjoy!

Wanted to add in closing, that though I disagree with the amendment being proposed, I am happy to see that they are at least following the Constitution and recognizing that in order to make a change such as they would like to do, they would need a Constitutional amendment to do it.  Usually, Congress just enacts whatever laws they want without thought to whether they are Constitutional or not.  So, I want to thank them for at least following the Constitution on thi
The Runaway Slave movie is an attempt by a black American to lift up his fellow black Americans and to open their eyes that many of the policies that our government pushes are actually keeping them in a form of slavery.

From the site:

"Runaway Slave is a new documentary that exposes the economic slavery of the Black community to the Progressive policies of the US government and how Black Conservatives lead the fight so all Americans can be “free at last.” C.L. Bryant is a Runaway Slave.

Former NAACP leader and self-professed “Democratic Radical,” C.L. escaped from the bondage of Progressivism and the shackles of entitlements to secure the blessings of liberty guaranteed by our founding document, the US Constitution.

Follow C.L. as he traces the footsteps of runaway slaves through the Underground Railroad.  He travels into the heart of Black communities across the US  from the slave ports of New Orleans to Chicago’s Cabrini Green to Martin Luther King’s birthplace, Atlanta, on to Jefferson’s Monticello; the film explores how 95% support of the Democratic Party has impacted the Black community.

Through interviews with politicians and everyday Americans and footage from national events, the film seeks to answer the question: Is the Black community 'free at last?'”

I read many of the comments after the videos on youtube.com and many are calling this film racist and that it is stirring up race issues.  I think the only thing racist about it, is that it singles out black people as being affected by these policies, instead of saying that it is really all people that are affected.  I think though, that he has had an awakening on the idea of freedom and really wants to share it.  He likely feels that this kind of information is better coming from him, a black man, than from a white man, a white man would automatically get labelled as a racist for speaking about such things.

One of the questions the trailers asked was why are race issues still a problem in this country.  The movie looks like it speaks very well to this.  Hopefully I will get a chance to view it once it is completed.

Below are the trailers to the movie.  It has not been completely edited and they are looking for money to finish up the project. 

I thought this was a good video to help teach money, banks, and the FED.  It uses cartoon format and humor to try to keep your attention.  In less than 30 min, you will get a pretty good wrap up of how it all works together.  The end is a bit dark, so before showing to children, be sure to view it yourself.

Extending unemployment benefits is being talked about again lately.  On the face, this seems like it would be the caring thing to do to help out people who have not yet been able to find work.  Anyone who would oppose something like this is surely heartless and misguided.  Right?

Well, I am one of those people who disagrees with extending unemployment benefits.  When a person looses a job, unemployment will help them out, temporarily, so that they can keep their families running while they locate work.  Many people will go out fairly quickly and locate some kind of work so that they can get on with their life.  This is how it is supposed to work. 

Others on the other hand will see this as a temporary paid vacation and will ride it out till they are close to the end of their unemployment benefits and then they will find a job.  We all know there are jobs out there, they just aren't the kind of jobs that pay what people would like.  So when someone says they can't find work, it is most likely that they can't find the kind of work that pays them what they want so financially it makes more sense to stay on unemployment and see if something they like comes along.

Since many of these unemployed people have job opportunities which are not all that appealing and would actually pay less than they are making on unemployment, it logically makes more sense to stay on unemployment till they can find a better job or till their unemployment runs out and then they will have to take a job they don't really want or find some other alternative.  In addition, unemployment will allow them to spend more time with their families which is a positive thing.  They can even do odd jobs here and there to bring in extra money, so being on unemployment can seem like it isn't such a bad thing.  I think all this makes good sense to most people since they figure it really is their money that they have been paying into the system so why not use it.

So, what happens then when someone hears that their unemployment will be extended?  The people who have not yet gone back to work will continue on with what they had been doing previously instead of taking a pay cut to do a job they don't want to do.  Why take the lower paying job now when they can just stay on unemployment?

So how does this impact everyone else?  If a person continues to stay out of the work force and just live off unemployment, then the unemployment levels will continue to be low.  Isn't one of the goals here that we want to get people back to work and the economy going again?  If we continue to extend unemployment, people who have just been riding it out, will continue to ride it out waiting for a good job to come along.  Without that unemployment, they will be forced to take whatever job they can find, which in turn will help out the economy which will eventually provide the type of job they are looking for. 

Additional to all this, once we have people back to work, even if they are working lower paying jobs, there will be more tax revenue coming into the government.  Our politicians should love this since we have lots of bills we need to be paying with all the spending we are doing.

I know taking a job somewhere like McDonald's or as a newspaper carrier are not prestigious jobs that require an expensive college degree, but they do provide money.  Sure, you might have to work a couple jobs in the short term to bring in enough money for your family.  You might even have to pack up and move your whole family across the country to find work, but these are the kind of things that people do in order to provide for their families.  Slowing down the inevitable is not really helping anyone.  Keeping people artificially out of the work force does not help the economy which in turn will not help create the kind of jobs that these people would like to have in the long run.  It's like a vicious cycle.

If you want to get people back to work, you cannot continue to encourage them to not work.  With the unemployment benefit being extended yet again, logically it will make more sense for someone not to work.  It is like they are getting something for free.  That is just how the brain seems to work.  For example, it is amazing how many people will buy something just because it is free even if they don't need it.  That just seems to be human nature.  I know several people who got a flu shot because it was free, not because they actually wanted it.  But we know that nothing is ever actually free.   We always pay for it in one way or another.  In the case of extended unemployment benefits, we are paying by artificially keeping the economy from growing.

It won't be the end of the world if they extend unemployment yet again, but it certainly will not help bring the economy back or bring people the jobs that they are looking for.  It may seem like the caring thing to do, but it is similar to allowing your adult child to live at home instead of encouraging them to get out and on their own.  Parents can really hinder the growth of their children in the same way that the government can create people who are dependent on them.  A parent can be there to help out in the short term, but I think most people realize that if this arrangement continues for long, it will make it harder for the adult child to get back out on their own.  This is the same thing that can happen with unemployment if it is allowed to go on for too long.
I have been spend some time listening to Milton Friedman talk about his views on government and libertarianism and wanted to share a few short videos.  If you go to youtube, there are many other videos on Milton Friedman that you can watch as well. 

Here are a few more videos talking different myths:
With election day approaching tomorrow, I have had many thoughts running through my head, especially after watching Jon Stewart's Restoring Sanity Rally in Washington DC.  C-Span aired the rally and after I watched it, I listened to people who called in who were just making a lot of comments in general, not just about the rally.  Overwhelmingly I found that people were viewing any opposition against President Obama as being hateful.  They were talking about how Tea Party people were just so hateful and they wish that people would just give Obama more time to do what he came to do and stand behind him.  In light of the rally talking about how the media tend to spin things and cause people to fear each other, I found it strange that these people didn't stop to think about whether what they might be thinking about Tea Party people might actually NOT be true.

I was left scratching my head because I have such a different view of President Obama and what he has done.  I paid attention during the last election when Obama talked about the things he would like to see happen in Washington and I watched how he sold Americans on his dream for the future.  I knew at the time that it was unrealistic because I knew one man could not change all of Washington, especially with long time politicians running Congress.  But, others didn't seem to realize that and just bought his hope and change that he was promising.  And with this, he was elected president.

For many people, the reality of Obama's presidency has set in.  For others, they are still waiting for what they were promised and they just want to give him more time to deliver.  But what they are not realizing, is that he HAS delivered, just not exactly what he promised. 

If you read the US Constitution, the President really only has a few job responsibilities that we the people give to him.  One of the main ones is the power of veto.  The President is supposed to be the check on our US Congress.  Now, if Obama had not campaigned on bringing everyone together in Washington and having both parties work together, I would not even be bringing this up, because I know that this would be a tough thing for one person to accomplish.  But many people who would not have otherwise voted for him did so simply because they felt that he could do this job of bringing people together as he promised, not so much because they liked all his policy ideas.  And really, he could have brought people together if he wanted to.  All he had to do was use his power of veto to do it.

How would the power of veto bring Congress together and force them to work together?  Simple!  If a President sees that people in Congress are not working together, he can threaten a veto or he can veto a bill that is passed and sent his way.  This really is one of his main jobs.  Take for example the health care package.  Even though in his speeches Obama kept asking for people from both parties to come up with ideas, it was clear that any ideas that veered from what he or his supporters in Congress wanted were not being considered.  We know this because at the same time there were all kinds of ideas that had been put forth.  And to make matters worse, he stood up in front of the American people and made it sound like those who opposed him did not have any ideas of their own.  So, when all was said and done, he passed a gigantic health care bill that was only worked on by his party and he did not veto this type of partisan politics which he had promised to end.  This type of thing is not uncommon in Washington, but on the heals of an election where Obama was elected into office on his message of bringing people together, I would have just expected him to make a better showing than that. 

So, did Obama really come to Washington to bring people together to get things done for the American people or did he just come to push through his agenda with all the things he could as quickly as possible while he had both houses of Congress?  I would think everyone knows the answer to that but there continues to be people who believe that he just hasn't been given enough time.  And somehow it is just his opponents fault because they are just such haters and they don't want to see anything done. 

I think most, if not all, people would say that the health care bill is not perfect.  But any supporters of this bill say that even though it was fraught with problems such as being too large for Congress people to read, that if it had not been passed now, it would never be passed.  Again, I have to scratch my head.  This bill could have been much better and it could have gotten bi-partisan support.  All that was needed was leadership from President Obama and his threat to use the power of veto in order to force Congress to work together.  Because Obama did not choose to do this, he allowed for a compete partisan bill to pass, that was not supported by the majority of Americans, and where members from his own party had to be bribed to vote for it.  I am still having a problem comprehending this and why more Americans are not outraged. 

Is this the type of thing you envisioned when Obama promised to bring people together.  Instead, he and our Congress, have succeeded in causing an uprising in American that has not been seen for quite sometime.  I am one of those many people who has been forced to learn more about our federal government and our US Constitution.  When I see the massive amounts of spending that is going on including all the stimulus/jobs programs, I can't help but wonder where this government thinks it gets its power to take the People's money and pick and choose who they think is worthy to get the money and help.  What about all the other businesses?  Our federal government was never meant to have this kind of power.  And I think people are starting to see why.

People who oppose Obama do it on very good grounds.  I do not hate President Obama.  I'm sure he is a nice man and his family seems great and I have no reason to say otherwise since I haven't met the man, but I completely disagree with the decisions he is making. 

I have heard people say they are worried that people will be voting this time based on lies they are being told on issues like the healthcare bill.  They feel there is a lot of misinformation and lies about the healthcare bill.  I would agree entirely.  But why is there so much misinformation about the healthcare bill?  I think we all know it is because it is a massive bill filled with all kinds of political language.  This just demonstrates the real reason people are voting against people who support the bill.  It is not because of the little details in the bill.  It is because of what happened to get the bill through in the first place even though the American people where telling Congress to slow down and get this right.  But we learned a very important thing about Congress.  They feel that they know better than the people that put them into power.  They feel that they are doing things in the best interest of the American people and that we will just have to thank them later for it.  This is just so frustrating that they do not understand their job.  But they are learning that Americans do not take kindly to being treated like they are ignorant.  No, we want to know what is in the healthcare bill BEFORE it is passed, thank you very much Nancy Pelosi.  I still cannot believe she said that.

So, this voting cycle, I think all Americans should send a message to our politicians.  We need to replace those people who do not uphold the Constitution, regardless of which party they are in.  We have to get back to following the supreme law of the land.  A country that allows its leaders to break the law is just asking for trouble.  We have allowed this to go on for too many years.  It is time to hold our politicians accountable.
Don't Tread on Me is a documentary that talks a lot about the US Constitution and how our federal government has been overstepping its constitutional authority for years.  You will learn a lot about states rights and what states need to be doing if the federal government starts butting in where it doesn't belong.  The states need to be standing up for their citizens before we get too far removed from the Constitution.

This movie does a really good job of explaining how instead of being individual states that are united with a federal government, we have become more of a federal government where the individual states identities don't seem to matter.  Polititians are trying to do everything at the federal level now as if the states don't exist.  It was not meant to be that way.  It's time to start the move back to a constitutional republic that we are.

It also does a good job of explaining what are rights versus what are privileges.  Rights are not something that can be given to us, but privileges are.  We do not want the government turning our rights into privileges that can be taken away.

Previously I blogged information about the Don't Tread On Me Constitution Quiz, so check that out after you watch the movie..
Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

Part 10

Part 11
I am all for the government getting back to only doing what the Constitution says it should do.  This is a great video that talks about the different ways to balance the budget.