Friday, July 09, 2004

Still Very Busy

Have you ever heard of Alan Jackson? He sings this song that goes, "Here in the real world, life's not simple at all...". That about sums it up. Super busy this week, but today rounds it up. I have to take our visiting dignitary to the airport and then I am free for the rest of the day. Yippeeeee!

Of course, I have 900 things to do and will have a few hours to do them in, but such is life.

In the meantime, I have hardly had time to make a run through the internet to read interesting material much less write the final chapters to "blood for oil". So, I continue to pass on some interesting reads from other places of interest.

Today, an article about deciding "who's side are you on, anyway?" Very interesting.
Before you read, I want you to ask yourself some questions...

1) Do you think that the US government has gone so far away from it's roots that it must be torn down and re-constituted?
2) Do you think that the US culture is so degenerate that we are causing our own destruction?
3) Do you think that we need more laws to insure we can try criminals without fear of overstepping their rights or do you think the laws we have serve the same purpose and need only to be re-enforced.
4) Do you think that people that are more successful should carry more of the tax burden because they have more money or do you believe that every person has the same opportunities as the other, is responsible for their own success and should carry a percentage of the tax burden based on their income just like everyone else?
5) Do you think that the US is bound by international laws as predicated by the UN and should subjugate herself to these rules for the betterment of the world or do you think that the US is a sovereign nation that must act in it's best interests regardless of "international laws", even if it means taking these actions alone, in order to insure her safety?
6) Do you believe federal government needs to take over healthcare and insure that every citizen is covered or do you believe that healthcare is the responsibility of the individual citizen?
7) Do you think that the terrorists would be better interdicted by police and intelligence agencies with cooperation from countries around the world and bring them to justice in our courts or do you believe that we need to take military action against them where ever we find them and destroy their base camps and kill them if necessary?
8) Did you like how the government was running the country before Sept 11, 2001 (including the Clinton Administration as comparison) and would like to return to that time or do you think that government focus needed to change on Sept 12, 2001? go read this article for more thought provoking comments.

Civilization vs. Trivia

In summary, we need to start asking ourselves some serious questions as we approach the upcoming elections.


Whitedeer said...

Just wanted to stop by and say "Hiyas" :)

Hoping you find some calm and quiet in the storm soon,

Robert said...

As usual, VDH makes an excellent article.

Pat in NC said...

1) NO
2) The majority of Americans are not degenerate. Those who are are just so loud.
3) I think our laws are fine, I do not think the US taxpayer should be reponsible for lawyer bills for non Americans held as war criminals.
4) Our tax codes are complex but basically fair. The ability of some of the richest having loopholes to avoid paying taxes should be examined but overall their tax rate should not be increased.
5) We cannot be subordinate to any country or organization.
6) We need tort reform to decrease nuisance suits, outrageous awards allowing more reasonable insurance
7) Appeasement and court trials do not work.
8) See above.

Robert said...

Actually, the tax code is not fair. It is way to complex and has loopholes that only people that can afford the time and money to figure out can figure out. So, I agree that rich people don't have to pay higher taxes, and I'll go a step futher.

I think we should have some type of flat tax, largely exemption free. This way 1. no political favors to people who want some type of loophole. Everyone pays a rate. 2. Every citizen can easily pay his taxes in a simple way. (I do think the idea of being able to put your taxes on a postcard is... well... awesome!) Oh yeah, and a zero rate on capital gains, while I'm in fantasy land. (People say that a flat tax would be unfair to the poor, but it would be largely self-enforcing. In order to keep the burden of taxing low on poor people, you'd have to keep it low on everyone. So politicians would have a real reason to cut spending and not just differ it to the rich.)

I'd like to do other stuff like make the IRS have to prove you are incorrect with your tax form, shift the burden back to them, but this may mostly solve that problem. I'd also like to nuke the IRS, but hey, then I wouldn't be able to be a bloodlusting, minority-hating, war-loving neoconservative.

Tom said...

1) No
2) No. Yes we've got problems. For example, the Janet Jackson affair during the Super Bowl was appalling. But I take issue with the "gloom and doom" social conservatives. I've got a positive outlook.
3) Generally the latter; better enforcement of existing laws.
4) I'm in favor of a flat tax.
5) We are a sovereign nation and are NOT bound by "international law"!
6) No
7) The latter. We need to treat this as a war, not a police action.
8) I do not like the pre-9/11 approach to terrorism and think we needed to change. The Clinton/Gore/Kerry/Edwards approach is to treat it a criminal matter. I strongly disagree and say that we need to treat it as a war.

Great questions.

Kat said...

Robert...LOL I love that "Nuke the IRS". I think I am more and more for flat tax myself. I understand the reality of running a debt free budget is not going to happen, regardless of the projections put forward under the Clinton Administration. However, I wouldn't mind some more investigations and eliminations of "pork barrel" spending.

I remember reading an article, maybe 6 years ago, that listed pork barrel projects. One of them was to study the amount of television teenagers watch and the effect on their psyche. Frankly, I think that is a stupid research program that is redundant. Does anybody really need to know that? Why is that funded by the government? It was essentially a study for network television (if I remember the specs) and seemed to be more of a "ratings grab" kind of research. You know, what kind of TV kids watch so they can figure out what to program. That is crap!

Kat said...

I see that we are all mostly in agreement. I took that political compass test and it said I was a libertarian, believe it or not! Never thought about where I really stood. Of course, the test described "right wing" as actually close to Hitler (I have read that fascism is described as "right wing") and Left is true communism. Then there was liberal and libertarian.

Anyway, almost went away from the subject. We have too many laws as it is and it is hard as hell to figure out where things are "legal", "illegal", etc. I agree with Pat from NC that having prisoners of war (or whatever their designation) in our legal system is just plain wrong. These men are foreign nationalist that were fighting against us. They should not have any rights under our laws.

The same for that bozo lawyer Doebbler who is trying to push Saddam's imprisonment through the supreme court. If they don't outright deny that, I am going to be very upset.

Robert said...

Absolutely on the POW thing. The constitution guarantees rights to citizens, and thats it. Our government is not required to uphold any rights to non-citizens (otherwise that defeats the purpose of being an American citizen).

Many people on the right lean 'libertarian' (small L) because of the philosophy 'keep government out!'. While we do have some social causes that we like, we have that thing that says government is usually inadequate as part of our philosophy (as opposed to the left that has no personal restraint on their own action). While I am certaintly socially conservative, I am not willing to legislate on many of those issues.

I have to run, but remind me to show you Hitler was a socialist later? Ok?

Second, eliminate pork barrel spending, move more power to the states instead of the federal gov't (I'll talk more about that later too). (wooohhooo go federalism! gotta run...)