Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A Letter to the President

This is a copy of a letter I just sent to the President.

Mr. President,

With the 234th Anniversary of our countries independence from England just a few days away, it is with a heavy heart and deep concern for our country that I am writing this. When Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence, he did so only after years of the Colonies trying to address their grievances, diplomatically, with the British Crown. Now reading over this historical document it is disturbing how the grievances of the original Colonies are so eerily similar to the grievances of the American people today. The Federal Government today is no longer a Government of the people, by the people and for the people. It mirrors the Government that the original Colonists left behind them in England, the very Government that the original Colonies declared their independence from. The Constitution of the United States was written to ensure the citizens of the United States never lived under a tyrannical Government again, to ensure they lived under a Government that truly believed in listening to the people and doing the peoples bidding. The 13 Colonies, now known as the 13 Independent States of America, created the Federal Government to serve the States; the Federal Government did not create the 13 States to be its servants, but that is where we are now. I do not lay complete blame for the state of our Nation on you and your administration, the blame is to be shared by every administration and every citizen of the United States over the past century. The citizens became comfortable with the Federal and State Governments running the affairs of state unchecked. The Nation has been through both trying times and prosperous times, always trusting the Government to do the proper thing. With the public turning a blind eye to the workings of our Government and the actions of our Government officials the administrations knowingly and gradually created more and more programs and regulations that ensured the dependency of the American people on the Government. During this process the Federal Government not only created the welfare class of citizens, they also transformed the Independent States into the Welfare States, also dependent on the Federal Government. Our Nation was created as a Republic, not as a Socialist Nation. Our Nation was established to have a small central Government with limited enumerated powers, powers granted to it by the States and the Citizens. Over the years the Federal Government has gradually usurped powers not granted to it within the Constitution and has attempted at every turn to mold the Constitution to fit whichever social agenda the current administration is supporting. We used to have Statesmen that would sacrifice their time, their families, their businesses and even in some cases, their fortunes to serve their country. We now have ever increasing power hungry career politicians with more concern for pleasing which ever voting block will get them re-elected and increase their personal fortunes and power base then they have for being good stewards of the Nations and the citizens’ welfare. You Sir are not a King, there is no royal family or royalty class in the United States of America, we left all that behind in England. You, your administration, and every administration for the past century evidently do not believe this, as evidenced by the out of control spending, the backdoor taxing, the attempts to control every aspect of our lives and the outright disregard for the Constitution, the very document all of you took an oath to support and defend. The true patriots to America are now awakened and we have been silent for far too long. While you intend to continue on the path to “fundamentally transform” America we intend to “restore” America to the America the Founding Fathers created. I urge you to stop piling on debt and start following the Constitution as it is written before you doom future generations of Americans to a life of serfdom just to pay for the follies of your administration and those that started us on this path. The movement has already started to “fundamentally transform” the Congress at the ballot box in November of 2010 by dismantling your Congress. The movement has already started to unseat you from you “throne” and give the White House back to the citizens of the United States in November of 2012. You have shown that you believe yourself to be a monarch of sorts and do not believe you need Congress to wield your power. I remind you Sir; you are bound by oath to follow the Constitution of the United States. In closing I would like to remind you and every member of Congress that you, as elected officials, work for the American citizens, you do not rule over us.

Steven K. Avery
MMC(SS/SW) USN Retired
A Patriot of the Constitution
30 June 2010

Monday, June 28, 2010

Down the Rabbit Hole

The past week or so have been really interesting in the world of politics. For anyone that has read George Orwell’s 1984 you might be thinking that George wasn’t so crazy, that maybe he had some inside information on the direction the world was headed. In the book 1984 the main character, Winston Smith, works in the Ministry of Truth. His job is to rewrite history and destroy any evidence of the old history. The story line is that something crosses his desk that he seems to remember as having happened a different way but he can’t be entirely sure. The entire citizenry is constantly brainwashed in such a smooth manner that you are never sure what it true; today’s enemy was yesterdays ally. This past week we saw the same scenario, General McChrystal allowed reporters from the Rolling Stone magazine to be privy to talk that they should not have heard. In the military there is an unwritten rule that you can say all you want in private but when in public you present a united front to preserve unity. Because of that the General has now been replaced with none other the General Petraeus, the same General Petraeus that was labeled as General Betraeus by just 3 years ago. At that time none of the Democrats in Congress, except Lieberman, were willing to publicly defend the General and condemn Now they are touting the qualifications of General Petraeus, stating he is the one for the job and that his confirmation will sail through Congress. Did we just rewrite history? Is the Ministry of Truth trying to brainwash us to not remember how unhappy Congress was with General Petraeus just 3 years earlier? If you do an internet search you can find some articles referring to General Betraeus but you won’t find the video that published. I’m not saying the General is not the one for the job, I’m just trying to show how the Government seems to believe that the public has very short memories and will believe whatever the Government wants us to believe. In the same vain there was a recent article in the London Telegraph about a poster hanging above the entrance to a museum honoring Winston Churchill. A visitor to the museum who obviously was familiar with Winston Churchill and photos of him pointed out to the staff of the museum that the trade mark cigar had been airbrushed out of the photo, changing history again? Here’s the link to that article; Cigar airbrushed out.

Let’s go further down the rabbit hole. This past weekend the President was in Canada attending G8 and G20 summits. These are summits for planning world finances, seems I have written about this already. World wide we are in deep trouble when it comes to country budgets, everyone owes everyone else and everyone is working off of huge budget deficits. To prepare for this summit the Canadian Government thought they needed to tout some cottage resort to promote their tourism so they built an indoor lake that will be torn down now that the summits are over. There is something wrong with this picture to me, world leaders meeting to discuss the failing economies across the globe and the host country, who is operating at a huge deficit builds a lake for the meeting when they should have put up a conference table with lots of chairs and lots of erasers to start taking useless programs out of their budgets. Here’s a link to the $2 million fake lake.

To continue our trip into Wonderland let’s look closer to home. In the midst of a major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico our President starts acting like a dictator. We are supposed to have a small Federal Government that was to serve the States, not the other way around. We, the States and the Citizens, have allowed the Federal Government to grow to the point where the Federal Government now believes itself to be a dictatorship. The Governor of Louisiana authorized dredging off the Chandeleur Islands to create sand berms to stop the oil before it reached the shores. Last week the US Department of the Interior ordered Louisiana to halt the dredging saying the plan was endangering the island chain; dredging stopped. It may only be by strange coincidence that the Department of the Interior did this at the same time a Federal Judge in Louisiana overturned the offshore drilling moratorium, which President Obama had ordered, allowing oil rig workers to go back to work. Was this move a coincidence or was it a temper tantrum by our President? If we were following the Constitution Governor Jindahl would have had the LA National Guard at the border telling the Federal Government to go back to Washington, we’ll call when we need you. Instead the Governor allowed the Federal Government to run rough shod over him, probably in fear of losing Federal money that supports his failing economy. To further erode any power that the States have the Federal Government is now filing suit against the state of Arizona for the recently passed immigration law. As I’ve written before the AZ immigration law is more restrictive to law enforcement then the Federal law is, it’s just that the Federal law is not being enforced, the politicians do not want it enforced. There is also new buzz going around that the President is considering bypassing Congress and using an Executive Order to give amnesty to approximately 11 million illegal immigrants; amnesty by Executive Order. What has not been widely publicized is a court battle in Florida between the State of Florida and the Federal Government over the health care bill. Florida legislatures passed a law against the health care bill, the Department of Justice has challenged this stating that the States cannot block Congress from collecting taxes, their argument is that the penalties and mandates in the health care bill may not be called a tax but they are levied and collected by the IRS so they are therefore a tax. All of these examples are just more evidence that the Federal Government, in particular the Executive branch is growing in leaps and bounds into a tyrannical Government. The Constitution has been thrown right out of the White House and Congress believes it is a living document that is only to be used as a guideline.

The American people are well on the way to the same Government the original founders of this country were escaping from. With July 4th, Independence Day, just under a week away it would do well for everyone in the country to read or reread the Declaration of Independence. When you read it start thinking of the things that are going on now in comparison to the reasons for succession listed in the Declaration of Independence, it will be eye opening.

Steve Avery
28 June 2010

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Arizona, the Gulf Coast and Florida

It may seem like a stretch to link what is happening in Arizona to what is happening on the Gulf Coast, not to mention Florida; but is it? In Arizona they were experiencing a literal flood of illegal immigrants coming across the border. These were not just the hard working immigrants that the media likes to flaunt in front of a camera to get our sympathy; this flood of bodies includes mules for the drug trade, coyotes profiting from human smuggling and who knows what else. In the Gulf of Mexico we have an oil spill going on that is currently affecting the environment of the entire Gulf, at least 4 States and could end up threatening the east coast and possibly our South American neighbors on the West Coast of the Gulf. What might be a little known fact is in Florida there is currently a court battle going on between the State of Florida and the Department of Justice about whether or not Obamacare is a legal mandate or a tax.

In Arizona the response from the general population has been supportive, understanding that the State has to do something to protect its border since the Federal Government has done little to nothing. The Federal Government after pushing from groups like La Raza has gone out of its way to fight against the Arizona law. The really funny thing about this whole deal is that the Arizona law only clarifies what local Law Enforcement can do in accordance with the Federal Law on Immigration. I’ve already spoken about this in another blog. In the Gulf we have what could be the worst disaster this country has ever seen, what has been the response of this administration; to spread the blame around between the last President and the CEO of BP. At the same time he is trying to take credit for being right on top of the situation when in reality nothing is being done. He has refused help from foreign countries and allowed the EPA to get in the way of ideas from individual citizens to major corporations on ways to stop and to clean up this spill. In Florida the State Government filed suit against the Federal Health Care Bill. In response the Department of Justice has files a motion to dismiss the lawsuit based on the Anti-Injunction Act which restricts courts from interfering with the Governments ability to collect taxes. Throughout the entire debate over the Health Care Bill the Administration kept insisting that this was not another tax, it would be a penalty. In the motion to dismiss the DOJ argues that regardless of whether it’s called a penalty or a tax, it’s assessed and collected in the same way by the Internal Revenue System. Seems to me the truth comes out.

Are you still asking how these three separate events have anything to do with each other? In Arizona and Florida the States have done nothing more then exercise their rights per the 10th Amendment. States trying to exercise their sovereignty is taking away the power of the Federal Government and encourages individualism. In the Gulf the Government is trying to run roughshod over a foreign owned company and is using the Coast Guard and EPA to prevent individuals along the coast from using their personal boats, equipment and ideas to protect their shores from the incoming oil. Allowing this type of individualism would once again threaten the power of the Federal Government. This administration, even more then ones in the past, wants to have a choke hold on any type of individualism and wants total control over the States. As long as the States stay under the thumb of the Government and individualism is discouraged, even punished, the Government can do anything they want to do, with our without the consent of the citizens of the country. Is this what they call a free country? I applaud the Governors of Florida and Arizona for taking steps to do what is best for their States, I applaud the citizens of the Gulf Coast for taking initiative, even when blocked by the Federal Government, to try and protect their homes and livelihoods. I applaud the Governor of Louisiana for bypassing the Federal Government and going ahead with the man-made sandbars to help prevent the oil from coming ashore.

There is still more that needs to be done. I fear the only way to take back our country is to take back our States. The 17th Amendment needs to be repealed and the States need to take back the powers they were intended to have when the Founders wrote the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. For too many decades the Federal Government has been supporting the States; that is not the way it should be, the States should support the Federal Government, only to the extent of the enumerated powers in the Constitution. Taxation of the individual should be in the hands of the States, not the Federal Government. The Federal Government does have the power to levy taxes as necessary to support the enumerated powers only, these taxes should be taxes that are levied on the States. The current form of taxation we have gives a blank check to the Federal Government; it allows political power to mean more then actual needs and the future of this country. Our current political atmosphere is one of power, not Statesmanship. Changes of this nature and magnitude would mean many Federal programs would cease to exist; many Federal Agencies would have to be disbanded. This would cause a lot of pain for a lot of people; I fear we are in for much more pain if we continue down the course we are on.

Steve Avery
20 June 2010

Friday, June 11, 2010

Joint Budget Planning????

On June 9th the Wall Street Journal reported that the top finance officials from the EU, the European Union, are urging the need for more centralized budgeting. What this would mean is that all the members of the EU would submit their budgets to the council after they have been submitted to their respective governments. Now on the surface many will say that this is just good economics since they rely on each other to bail them out. Excuse me! One country relying on another countries budget to be able to survive? One country having a say in another countries budget? Is this just the precursor to a One World Government?

Let me give you an example that many people may be able to identify with. I am married with 3 children that are for the most part out on their own in the world, well, one of them is back home now, at least for a little while. We live on about an 11 acre plot of land that was passed down to my father by his parents, part of that was put in my name so I could build a house on it. My parents have since built a house on it also. Ok, now down to budgets. When my wife and I are making out our family budget we take into consideration what we need as a family. When my parents are working on their budget they take into consideration what they need as a family. We do not take our budget over to my parents to get their approval nor do they submit theirs to us for approval. Sure we share the same piece of land and have common goals but, what they earn and spend is not my concern or business, just as what I earn and spend is none of theirs. When our children were at home our budget would include their allowance, what they did with it after we gave it to them was their business. Once they left home we stopped giving them an allowance and they started figuring out their own budgets. As parents get older and their income goes down there may be cases where the next generation will include them into their budget to help support them. In times of hardship we have given money to our grown children if we could afford it just as our parents have done for us at times and we have done for them at times, only if we were able to afford it. Does this sound like how most families work? When you are planning out your budget do you take into consideration your neighbors budget? Do you loan money to a family member or a neighbor when you can’t afford to? Do you loan money to a family member or neighbor when you know they are just going to use it frivolously when there are better things you could be doing with it? Do you continue to loan money to a family member that just keeps making bad judgments on how to spend it, never changing their habits? Most responsible people do not like to throw good money after bad.

Now take that same attitude and look at the world we are living in now. Given the above example of a family’s budget let’s use it as an example for the Government. My parents, as the Patriarch and Matriarch of our family, would be the Federal Government. My wife and I would be the State Government with our children would be the local county and city Governments. The way our Government was originally set up the Federal Government had no means of earning money other then through taxation. That taxation is coming from the individuals of the States and from taxation of imports and exports to and from other countries. The State Governments receive their income from taxation of income within that state, sales within that state, land usage within that state and road usage within that state. Local County and City Governments income is obtained typically from property taxes within that County of City and from the budget of the State, just like a child working a part time job and receiving an allowance. This isn’t a perfect parallel of how a family budget works but its close. The Federal Government has a limited income so it should have a budget to match; the States have limited income so they should have budgets to match, and the same with the smaller local Governments. One States budget should have no affect on another States budget, just as one countries budget should have no affect on another. Our Federal Government needs to take a few lessons from family budgeting. The USA needs to stop sending foreign aide to third world countries that are doing nothing to improve their lot in life. Stop sending money to countries that have had some form of disaster while we are fighting disasters in our own country. Stop making loans to countries that are going bankrupt but are unwilling to change their spending habits. I know some of these sound heartless but let’s look at the reality of it. If the USA continues to make loans to countries that are never going to be able to repay us how long will the USA be able to stay afloat, once the USA goes bankrupt what help will there be for those recipient countries? Just to stay with the reality of the situation, the USA is on the verge of bankruptcy already.

Now look at the joint budget planning, this is just another step towards a One World Government, just what the progressives want. Do we want the French or the English to tell us how to spend our money? Didn’t we fight the French and then the British for the right to do what we felt was right for this country? Do we want to present our budget to Greece for approval? They haven’t done to well with their country so what makes anyone think they should have a right to tell any other country how to run their countries budget. I know we are not one of the members of the EU but if the EU moves forward with this how long will it be before a similar move will be made in the United Nations. How long will it be before the EU and the UN are making moves to have joint planning and approval for other areas of the Government, such as what laws are written, what rights are observed, and what freedoms are allowed. Is that what we want? Do you want your neighbor or someone in another part of the State you are living in to tell you how to setup your family budget? Do you want Nations with completely different moral codes to tell us how our laws should be written or what freedoms we should have, if that’s what you want you will have no freedoms, you will be a slave to the One World Government. If you don’t believe this to be the direction the world is headed you need to stop and listen to the politicians. The progressives in our own Government are headed towards this at breakneck speed. Anyone that believes in what this country is suppose to stand for needs to wake up and start paying attention to what is going on not only in our country but also throughout the world and how it affects us.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Our Flag

Having just celebrated Memorial Day and looking forward to the 4th of July I thought this would be an appropriate time to do a little research on the Flag of the United States of America. Just a simple search on the internet will reward you with a wealth of information, information on the meanings behind the flag, how the flag came to exist, when and how to fly or display the flag, inappropriate displaying of the flag and the numerous opinions on the age old discussion about flag burning. It was a real eye opener when I realized that most of this is no longer taught is our schools.

While it is widely accepted that Betsy Ross created the first flag that displayed the 13 stars, it is not true that this was the first official flag of the United States. Legend states that George Washington, Colonel Ross and Robert Morris requested met with Betsy Ross there is some speculation as to whether or not George Washington was actually present. For the first year after the signing of the Declaration of Independence there was no official United States of America flag. There were plenty of homespun designs and the Betsy Ross flag is without doubt the most recognizable of the early flags of the United States. Whatever the circumstances that surround this particular flag it is still a flag that patriotic Americans look at with pride.

According to the first official flag of the United States was voted on by the Continental Congress on June 14th 1777. There is strong evidence that NJ Congressman Francis Hopkinson was the designer of this flag. According to Hopkinson, who was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, designed the flag while serving on the Continental Navy Board.

The only President to serve under this flag was George Washington. There is also disagreement as to whether the colors on the flag have any special meaning or were they just adopted from the colors on the British flag. According to legend, George Washington interpreted the elements of the flag this way: the stars were taken from the sky, the red from the British colors, and the white stripes signified the secession from the home country. However, there is no official designation or meaning for the colors of the flag. However, in 1782, the Congress of the Confederation chose these same colors for the Great Seal of the United States. While introducing the design of the Great Seal to the Continental Congress Charles Thompson, Secretary of the Continental Congress made the following statement; "The colors of the pales are those used in the flag of the United States of America; White signifies purity and innocence, Red, hardiness and valour, and Blue, the color of the Chief signifies vigilance, perseverance and justice.". So the question is, have we adopted the colors of the Great Seal for an explanation of the colors on the flag, or did the Great Seal adopt its colors and meaning from the Flag? Whichever case it is America has forgotten the meaning of the flag, the Great Seal and the colors of both. The number of stars and stripes do have significant meaning. The 13 stripes represent the original 13 Colonies, the stars represent the number of States currently recognized as official States of the United States of America. The stars on a blue background represent the United States of America as a new Constellation. Since the adoption of the flag in 1777 the only change has been the addition of stars as new States were added to the Union.

Although it is totally appropriate to fly the flag anytime of the year there are specific times when the flag should be flown. According to the US Flag Code the following are dates the flag should be flown:
• New Year's Day, January 1
• Inauguration Day, January 20
• Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, third Monday in January
• Lincoln's Birthday, February 12
• Washington's Birthday, third Monday in February
• Easter Sunday (variable)
• Mother's Day, second Sunday in May
• Armed Forces Day, third Saturday in May
• Memorial Day (half-staff until noon), the last Monday in May
• Flag Day, June 14
• Father's Day, third Sunday in June
• Independence Day, July 4
• Labor Day, first Monday in September
• Constitution Day, September 17
• Columbus Day, second Monday in October
• Navy Day, October 27
• Veterans Day, November 11
• Thanksgiving Day, fourth Thursday in November
• Christmas Day, December 25
• Other days as may be proclaimed by the President of the United States
• Birthdays of States (date of admission)
• State holidays.
These days were chosen for significant reasons. Reasons such as the discovery of America, the birth of the United States of America, the birth of the longest standing Constitution in the world, the birth of the National Flag, the birth of the first President and the birth of the President that brought the states back together, the birthday of a man that dedicated his life to ensuring that the words of our founders was applied to all men regardless of race, the birthdays of the organizations that have ensured the freedom of our country (the Army and Navy), a day honoring all who have fought and died to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America, a day to honor the resilience of those that first came to these shores and started the colonies that later became the United States and those Native Americans that helped them through the hard times, a day honoring the mothers that have raised their sons and daughters to fight in defense of the Constitution, a day celebrating the start of a new year and new hope and a day honoring the workers that gave their strength and sweat to create this great Nation we live in. There are other dates that are listed that have a significance that is constantly under fire, their meaning is not lost on those that believe in the work our Founding Fathers did, these dates include, Easter and Christmas, proving that Judeo-Christian beliefs played a major role in the formation of our Constitution. While we are not only a Christian Nation, Christianity and its basic beliefs in right and wrong were strong influences in the creation of this great Nation.
The US Flag Code also specifies the proper way to fly or display a flag and inappropriate displaying of the flag. In general the flag is to be displayed in a respectful manner. The blue field, the union, should always be at the highest point of the flag. When displayed in a window or on a wall the union should be in the uppermost left hand corner from the viewers’ position. When used on a stage and hung flat it should be above and behind the speaker with the union in the upper left hand corner when viewed from the audience. When the flag is displayed with other banners and pennants it should be in the center and either forward of the other flags (such as in a parade) or on a staff that is higher then the other staffs. When displayed with another flag on the same staff the American flag will be on top. When displayed with flags of other nations the flags shall be displayed on separate but equal height staffs and the flags should be of equal size. When you read these requirements it should become obvious that America is not trying to show or prove any dominance over other countries as many believe. When displayed with State flags the US flag should be in a position of prominence just as the Nation when taken as a whole is in prominence. Inappropriate displays include the wearing of the flag as clothing, flags painted on cars, printed on plates or napkins, flags as bandanas or headbands and flags used as coverings for tables or other furniture. Many of these are overlooked simply because the showing of patriotism to the country is always a good thing. Flying of the flag upside down is also addressed in the Flag Codes. The flying of a flag upside down should only be used in times of dire distress to life or property, displaying it upside down as a political statement does not constitute dire distress.
The Flag Code goes on to specify the actions to be taken when the flag is raised or lowered and when the National Anthem is played. If playing the National Anthem while hoisting the flag: the flag shall be raised in a manner that will have the flag at full staff as the Anthem ends. If hoisting the flag without playing the National Anthem the flag shall be raised in a slow but steady manner. In neither case should any part of the flag be allowed to touch the ground while be unfurled. Bystanders should stop and honor the flag by either saluting if they are military in uniform or if they are veterans, or by placing their right hand over their left breast, close to the heart, if they are wearing headgear it should be removed with their right hand and placed over their heart. Citizens of other countries that are present should show respect to our flag by standing during the hoisting of the flag and the playing of the Anthem. Lowering of the flag should be done in a brisk manner without allowing the flag to touch the ground and then properly folded.
Many Americans have forgotten not only the history of our flag; they have also forgotten how to respect our flag and the freedoms it represents. Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on how you feel about the subject, the very freedoms that our flag represents are the freedoms that allow for the desecration of our flag. In this country it is not unusual to see the flags of other countries flown at homes and businesses while in the minimal travels I have done overseas I have only seen the American flag flown over American Military establishments. In recent months we have seen the American flag flown below the Mexican flag and upside down in demonstrations to the illegal immigrations stance that the State of Arizona has taken, my question to those demonstrators is whether they could do that in Mexico? I am torn personally in how I feel about the allowing of the burning of the flag or the flying of the flag in a disrespectful manner such as the above mentioned demonstrations. On one hand I agree with the whole freedom of speech argument, on the other I wonder why we have hate speech laws that apply to the desecration of the symbol of someone else’s country, religion or race but not to the symbol of our own country, the one country where they can burn the flag without being faced with legal action.

Steve Avery
June 6, 2010