17 December 2011

Elected Officials

What I Want Them to Do

I’ve written on this before, but I am, to borrow a phrase from our beloved political elite, revising and extending my remarks.

Here’s what I want my elected Federal officials to do:

Substantially and actually reduce Federal spending immediately after the oath of office.  Immediately limit spending to less than revenue; substantially less.

Actually cut each years Federal spending by at least one percent of last years’ spending; regardless of inflation, new programs, growth of recipients, population growth, revenue increases, recession, depression or any other stupid reason.

Make it clear that all new legislation will be vetoed, unless there is a compelling national emergency, acknowledged by more than half of all citizens expressing the desire that a particular consensus solution be applied, the misery of which will assuredly to be shared equally by all.

Prohibit all new regulations.  Suspend all existing regulations, except those that apply to all citizens equally, pending a complete review of each for costs versus value.  Cancel by Executive Order, all regulations that cost more than their demonstrable value and are not constitutionally authorized for Federal Government.

Cancel by Executive Order, all obsolete regulations.

Veto all new laws that do not apply to all citizens equally; especially those exempting Congress, the President and any elected or appointed officials. 

Begin the repeal of all Congressional and Executive Branch exemptions to laws they’ve passed on everyone else.

Repeal all obsolete laws.

Immediately cancel all tax law that does not apply equally to all.  Revise all tax laws that allow for progressive tax rates.  Only allow one rate applied equally to all.  Immediately nullify all laws granting exemption, deduction, exclusion, subsides or transfer payment from or to tax filers, and grant only deductions for business or home improvements, carefully defined and equally available to all legal citizens.

Require all citizens to be prepared to provide proof of citizenship and carry it on their person at all times.

Veto all street, road, highway, river, mountain, lake, stream, ravine, rock or any other natural place name changes paid for from tax revenue, regardless of now nice or popular the dead person’s family is or was.

Eliminate any religious displays and any edifices to the dead on Federal Interstate Highways right-of-ways. 

Do not allow the installation of religious symbols, religious paraphernalia, or verbatim religious quotes from this day forward on taxpayers funded property or facilities.   

Reduce all entitlement payments by ten percent each year until they are demonstrably below the survival level, not counting help from others.  Then freeze them relative to the “Cost of Living” signified by the Consumer Price Index (existing, CPI) and Government Cost Index (new, calculation of total individual annual tax burden as a percentage of income).

Reconsider by national computerized referendum, if governments should be allowed to offer insurance for sale at all, given their monumental and historical miss-management and numerous defaults. 

Do not modify the “promised” and “paid for” levels of benefits by already compulsory participating citizens, like Social Security, Disability, Medicare, and Unemployment.  Change the contributions or benefit level for future participants. 

Create no new Federal benefit programs that are compulsory or with unpublicized opt-out provisions.  All new benefits must include widely advertised OPT-IN provisions equally available for all citizens and government officials.  Zero compulsory or mandatory contributions.  No everyone must be in, and you have to op-out or buy your way out.

If you want in, you pay in.  If you don't, no help for you later.

No one should ever be compelled to be in a socialist government benefit or insurance program from the beginning without their own personal request.

Any benefit program revenue deficiencies will be made up by more contributions or lower benefits for program participants only, no general tax revenue, loans or temporary funds transfers will be permitted, ever for any reason.

Limit Unemployment payments to a maximum of twenty six (26) weeks, period. 

Eliminate the ideas of subsides and tariffs, by all there various names and schemes.  They just shrink markets and penalized productive workers and industries under the guise of protecting jobs which will be lost to retaliation or market forces later.

Evolve quickly to enterprises producing goods and services better, faster, and cheaper than anyone else in the world.  Stop artificial protection and artificial punishment.

Labor Unions; repeal special treatment laws and tax exemptions for them.  They are not a religion, they are not educational, and they are not philanthropic.      

Phase out all subsides, all tariffs, all embargoes, all exemptions, and all Corporate and individual income tax deductions by ten (10) percent each year, beginning immediately after inauguration.  Allow tax exemptions for business expenses and equipment replacement, and likewise, home expenses, repairs and improvements for individuals.  

Phase out all Corporate and business taxes by ten (10) percent each year until they are zero, then prohibit taxes on businesses forever.  They are just passed on to consumers hidden in the price of goods and services.  Stop it.

Abandon income tax, in favor of a low National Sales Tax (NST) on all purchases, prepared or cooked food, homes, buildings, insurance, vehicles, drugs, medical services, clothes and all goods and services including elicit, illegal and black-market sales. 

No NST on raw unprepared foods or raw materials that will be consumed in their natural form or made into something else, whether used or traded for other goods, unless sold for money.  When sold the sale amount would be taxable.  If grown, produced and consumed or used by the originator, No National Sales Tax

Begin immediately closing all government organizations not authorized by the Constitution, including offices, commissions, boards, institutes, bureaus, and other organizations; and begin consolidating authorized functions in the few remaining departments.  Within three (3) years, no exceptions, have constitutionally unauthorized departments closed and authorized functions transferred. 

Withdraw nearly all combat and support troops from all overseas posts to within our boundaries.  Leave science, technology, medicine, philanthropic and training troops to help our allies and a few others in the most desperate need. 

Assign 175 thousand mixed services troops to Operation “Secure Borders”.  Begin retraining and redeploying 25% of Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines for their new jobs preventing intrusions into our country.  They can do it, the Coast Guard already does. 

Continue Defense research and development at about half its current level; it’s essential.

Immediately begin reducing Foreign Aid.  Send humans, agricultural seed and science, or medicine; send help not money.  If they don’t want our help, don’t bribe them to be our friends.  Let them wallow in ignorance, poverty, corruption, famine and disease.

I want smaller, more efficient, much less intrusive, much less expensive Federal government focused on just the constitutional obligations the citizens require and have allowed, not running roughshod over the rights of states and our citizens.

12 December 2011

Our Children Can

Pray at School

There’s nothing preventing children from praying at school.  In fact, the constitution and several Supreme Court decisions guarantee the right of all citizens to pray anywhere they are in the United States.

I don’t how anyone anywhere could stop you, if you want to pray silently.  I think they would have to kill you to stop you, if you really wanted to pray out loud.

In the United States, the right to choose not to pray in conducted prayers is a protected right.  You always have the right to not believe and not participate, basically freedom from religion, and that has been upheld many times by the Supreme Court.

What can’t take place in Public Schools is the conscription of all those present lead by a designated person coercing all those gathered to recite in unison a particular religions prayer or mantra, be it Christian, Moslem, Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish or any other.

The Supreme Court has also apparently upheld that like minded students can willfully gather on their own at public facilities normally available for meeting purposes and conduct their own religious discussions and prayers, un-mandated, un-coerced or un-conscripted, just like any other groups or association that for any reason might request and schedule its use.

I think the basic reason is, these are public schools supported entirely by public monies, and the Constitution prohibits any laws “respecting an establishment of religion”.  Spending public money, or using the facilities and opportunity provided by public money to conscript those gathered to chant a Buddhist mantra well the prayer wheel spins, or roll out a carpet, kneel and bow toward Mecca reciting one of five daily prayers, or any other religious ceremony approved, accepted or rejected and under the possible threat of social distain, criticism, shame, banishment, or physical punishment, I believe should be and is prohibited. 

The religious indoctrination of children assembled for public education, I think must be prohibited.

We’ve already set aside in many tax-free havens with many places specifically for religion teachings, churches, synagogues, mosques, and many others plus many religious teaching schools and seminaries, mostly tax exempt. 

Those who wish to participate in or subject their children to the practices of some religious belief are guaranteed the right in this country to do so, to go there and participate without interference from the law, public authorities, other citizens, any persons or organizations.  Also, all citizens have the right to worship on property they own, rent or lease, just not on public property owned by all citizens regardless of their many different beliefs.  
Citizens also have the right to choose not to believe in, participate in, be coerced by, or conscripted into any religious beliefs whether they be in a God, or gods, the creator, or the Great Spirit, a Caterpillar, or the Great Pumpkin, or the absence of any of them.
Conduct worship ceremonies whenever you wish, just do it off of our public property.
US Constitution, Amendment I, (in part)
 “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;…”