The TEA Party: Five Years of “Non-Stop” Criticism

On his radio show this morning, Glenn Beck urged his listeners not to go to see the new film, Non-Stop, starring Liam Neeson as an air traffic marshal who must track down a killer in-flight.  This is definitely a spoiler-alert because, according to Glenn (who saw the movie last night), the killer is an ex-Army Ranger who wants to get back at the TSA and at the current administration for infringing upon the freedoms of the American people.

According to Glenn, the character doesn’t directly say so, but there’s a very strong implication that this Constitution-quoting killer is connected to the TEA Party.

It’s hard to believe it’s been five years since Rick Santelli gave the clarion call to Conservative Americans to tell the government that we’ve had enough of bureaucracy, big government overreaching beyond its Constitutional limits, exorbitant taxes, and infringement of our Constitutional rights.

What followed Santelli’s so-called “rant” on CNBC, calling for a Tea Party rally in Chicago on April 15, Tax Day, was a movement of Americans, rather undisciplined at first, calling to account their representatives at every level of government – federal, state, local, and educational.

First impressions count, and uncommitted Americans’ first impressions of the TEA Party were of a mob run amok.  People were just running around, yelling and carrying signs.  Understandably, moderate Americans held their noses and said, “Ewww!”

But we aren’t really like that at all.  At least not here in New Jersey.  We did things differently than they did in Florida.  We made an outline of our activities, from an opening ceremony to who would give the closing speech.  We made time for music to appeal to the younger folks.  We invited a panel of elected officials from both parties to come speak.  Unfortunately, our particular Tea Party didn’t take my seasoned advice (having helped in carrying out legislative visits) and give all the candidates the same question.  There was some unpleasantness.  But it worked out.

We gave equal time to professional and community speakers.  That appeased our older attendees.  Everyone was happy.  When people heard they could bring home-made signs, they were thrilled.  The signs ensured the success of future rallies that summer.  The signs were almost like a contest.  People prided themselves on their homemade signs.

But there were enemies amongst us:  DIDs (Democrats in Disguise) sent to sow unhappiness among the volunteers working on the rally and RINOs also trying to discourage our volunteers.  They told them that the first rally would be a failure, that they were doing all this work for nothing.

Someone – namely, me – literally shouted them down and showed them where the door was.  Well, they were trying to tell the TEA Party its business.  They were trying to tell us that we had to be non-partisan or bi-partisan.  I told them we were a Conservative group and if they didn’t like it, they didn’t have to stay.

There were also online battles where the TEA Party and moi were threatened with lawsuits.  Eventually, I was kicked out of the Tea Party.  But the April 15th rally drew a crowd of over 2,000.  The next rally, there were 4,000 and at another rally on July 4th, 6,000.  Quite a success for a small-town TEA Party, wouldn’t you say.

I bear that Tea Party no particular grudge.  Their meetings were pretty far away for me.  At the time, they were the only group available.  Now there are Tea Party groups all over the state, some by other names, but all with the same Conservative cause.

I warned them not to abandon the rallies; they were what gave the Tea Party its exposure.  However, they wouldn’t listen.  Well, after all, it’s pretty easy to tell someone else to do the hard work, isn’t it?  Some members wanted to do more than just hold rallies; they wanted to get involved politically.  I tried to tell them it was all about educating the people, not the politicians who, for all intents and purposes, were already compromised.

Still, if the TEA Party really wants to succeed and to be perceived as being successful by the Conservative media that is desperately trying to help them (namely Fox News), they must do this thing, even if they only do it once a year.  We’re $17 trillion in debt?  Apparently, someone didn’t get the message five years ago.  We’re being taxed more than ever, and to no good purpose.  The TEA Party’s work isn’t done.  Probably, it will never be done.  We are the watch-dogs.  Some people don’t like dogs.  Some people are afraid of them, some don’t like their barking.  Isn’t that too bad?

By 2010, the rallies were drawing fewer people, for a number of reasons.  First, the organizers had allowed themselves to be persuaded that the home-made signs were bad for business.  They just didn’t understand that the signs were the easiest way for the greatest number of average Conservatives to get their message across at the same time without the rally turning into a screaming riot.  The signs were quite effective – and the people enjoyed the heck out of it.

But the signs were banned, nonetheless.  Then there was the problem of music and the generation gap.  The rock n’roll country style music appealed to younger voters and their young families, but not to the Hearing Aid Generation, who despised it.  Truthfully, I don’t care for rock myself, but if it got those younger voters out, I was all for it.  Whatever worked.

Nevertheless, the music was silenced and when that happened, all that was left of the Tea Party rallies was a handful of older people in lawn chairs and a smaller (thankfully) number of speakers.  Not seeing the numbers they’d seen in the early days, the rally organizers gave up holding rallies and lost most of their base.

“We’ll get into politics,” they told themselves.  “We’ll have meetings with the politicians.”  Except that the politicians are mostly RINO Republicans who have their own concerns with committee chairmanships, cronyist deals, and unreliable staff members (just ask Gov. Christie) who feed them false information.  There are more moles in our legislators’ officers than there are in the U.S. Embassy in Russia.

There is also a division within the Tea Party about getting involved in social issues.  Some say, rightly, that the government has no business interfering in personal affairs, as the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution states.  The states should be left alone to decide on issues concerning abortion, gay marriage, educational reform and so forth.

The trouble is, we are a society first and a nation second.  If that social fabric is torn apart, you don’t have a nation left worth fighting for.   We are a nation of laws and those laws had their foundation in a respect for God.  When you stop respecting His laws, yours won’t be worth the toilet paper they’re written on.

Average people fear Tea Partiers as trouble-makers, whack-Os, tin-foil soldiers, and every –ism in the Liberal vocabulary.  We view Moderates as feckless cowards, afraid of their popularity and fearful of a too-powerful Media controlled by the government.  They fear for their families, their jobs, and their lives.  If they bothered to look, if they bothered to trouble to inform themselves, they’d find out it’s the government, not the Tea Party, that has taken Justina Pelletier (and other children) away from their families without just cause.

I’m not the president of the Tea Party.  If I were, I would advise my Tea Party groups to: 1) Get back out on the street and rally, rally, rally (as the weather permits).  Invite the neighbors back to the party, with their signs.  2) Strike up the bands.  Young voters love music, particularly rock music.  Let the older generation stuff their ears with cotton, stop kvetching, and be glad the kids are there at all.  3)  Don’t pander to the politicians.  Don’t beat them up.  But don’t pander to them.  Don’t become star-struck if one of them invites you to a meeting.  Don’t suck up to them.  Stick to your agenda and let them know you expect them to show backbone.  If they don’t, find some other candidate to get behind.  4)  Don’t let the IRS scare you about supporting candidates.  You don’t have to name names.  Just put them to the Conservative test and make sure they stick to it.  Finally, 5) Every candidate should be given a literal History and Constitution test.  Seriously.  For example, who was the first American governor of New Jersey (William Livingston)?

Who said the following:  “It was a thing hardly to be expected that in a popular revolution the minds of men should stop at that happy mean which marks the salutary boundary between power and privilege, and combines the energy of government with the security of private rights.  A failure in this delicate and important point is the great source of the inconveniences we experiences, and if we are not cautious to rectify and ameliorate our system we may travel from one chimerical project to another; we may try change after change; but we shall never be likely to make any material change for the better.”?  (Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers, No. 26)

Who made this statement:  “When the public is called to investigate and decide upon a question in which not only the present members of the community are deeply interested, but upon which the happiness and misery of generations yet unborn is in great measure suspended, the benevolent mind cannot help feeling itself peculiarly interested in the result.”?  (The author went by the pseudonym of “Brutus” and was thought to be New York Judge Robert Yates; The Anti-Federalist Papers, “Brutus” Essay I.)

Name the U.S. presidents from first to current, in order.

What is the capital of Ethiopia?  (Addis-Abbaba)

In what year was South Dakota admitted to the Union?

Who came first – Plato, Socrates, or Aristotle?  (Socrates, the teacher of Plato)

What does “novus ordo seclorum” mean and where can this motto be found?  It’s Latin for “a new order of the ages” and can be found on the Great Seal of the United States.

The questions asked depend on the office the candidate seeks.  A candidate for mayor of Pompton Lakes might be asked what the word “Pompton” means.  (Indian for “where the waters meet,” which is very true of Pompton Lakes) or when the town was founded (Feb. 26, 1895).

Someone on the state level might be quizzed on their knowledge of the state.   What does the name “Kansas” mean (Indian for “people of the wind”)?  Or, why was the state known as “Bleeding Kansas”?  Did Kansas enter the Union as a Free or Slave state (Free)?  Which explorer first set foot in Kansas (Coronado, in 1541, almost two centuries before the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts)?  Who were the “Exodusters” (Recently-freed slaves who sought freedom in Kansas)?

A presidential candidate aiming for the highest office in the land should know all this about the fifty states and more.  That candidate should be familiar with the capitals and rulers of foreign lands.  They should know the Constitution backwards and forwards and be willing to uphold it.  Military experience, while not mandatory, would be preferable, as it should be at least for Senators.  They should be made to go through the “gas chamber” before entering the Senate chamber.

A presidential candidate should have an exemplary knowledge of American history.  They should be able to recite history concerning America at least 400 years before the signing of the Declaration of Independence so we know they know why freedom was so important to the Colonists.  We should not suffer the President of the United States to take our history or our freedom for granted.

People laughed and complained when legislators read the preamble to the Constitution of the United States.  They said it was a waste of taxpayers’ time and money.  Considering how much money they do waste, we considered it worthwhile for them to recite a reminder of their duties to the taxpayers.

We should also require the President to observe certain customs on national holidays:  A reading of Washington’s First Inaugural address on Presidents Day, as well as a renewal of the oath of office.  A reading of the Gettysburg Address on Memorial Day after he lays the wreath at Arlington National Cemetery.  A reading of a portion of the Declaration of Independence on the Fourth of July.  And a reading from a selection of Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations on Tax Day.

Finally, on September 11th, Congress should hike itself out to Somerset, Pa., to the United Airlines Flight 93 Memorial to give thanks to God and the passengers on that flight in 2001 that they are either alive, or that their successors lived, to see another day.

The TEA Party isn’t a party in the sense that it’s a political party, although its members are decidedly Conservative.  If we’d wanted to create a political party, we would have called it The Conservative Party.  Ultimately, we should.  The TEA Party is about politics, yes, but not about politicians.  We’re about the people.  We’re for the people.

We are the people.

Published in: on February 28, 2014 at 3:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Military Suicide

Shortly after the end of World War I and the Signing of the Treaty of Versailles in June 1919, Adolf Hitler was released from jail, and Germany immediately began violating the military terms of the treaty, to which all the signees had to consent.  It was not just a matter of Germany disarming; the Allies, accordingly, had to also disarm.  Great Britain sank most of her Navy.  Fortunately, the U.S. was not a signee to the treaty, feeling that the economic reparations against Germany were too harsh and would only bring on more trouble (which it did).

The treaty was comprehensive and complex in the restrictions imposed upon the post-war German armed forces, the Reichswehr. The provisions were intended to make the Reichswehr incapable of offensive action and to encourage international disarmament. Germany was to demobilize sufficient soldiers by March 31, 1920, to leave an army of no more than 100,000 men in a maximum of seven infantry and three cavalry divisions. The treaty laid down the organization of the divisions and support units, and the General Staff was to be dissolved.  Military schools for officer training were limited to three, one school per arm and conscription was to be abolished. Private soldiers and non-commissioned officers were to be retained for at least twelve years and officers for a minimum of 25 years, with former officers being forbidden to attend military exercises. To prevent Germany from building up a large cadre of trained men, the number of men allowed to leave early was limited.

The number of civilian staff supporting the army was reduced and the police force reduced to its pre-war size, with increases limited to population increases; paramilitary forces were forbidden.  The Rhineland was to be demilitarized, all fortifications in the Rhineland and 31 miles east of the river were to be demolished and new construction was forbidden.   Military structures and fortifications on the islands of Heligoland and Dune were to be destroyed.

Germany was prohibited from the arms trade, limits were imposed on the type and quantity of weapons and prohibited from the manufacture or stockpile of chemical weapons, armored cars, tanks and military aircraft. The German navy was allowed six pre-dreadnought and was limited to a maximum of six light cruisers (not exceeding 6,000 long tons), twelve destroyers (not exceeding 800 long tons and 12 torpedo boats (not exceeding 200 long tons) and was forbidden submarines.

The manpower of the navy was not to exceed 15,000 men, including manning for the fleet, coast defenses, signal stations, administration, other land services, officers and men of all grades and corps. The number of officers and warrant officers was not allowed to exceed 1,500 men. Germany surrendered eight battleships, eight light cruisers, forty-two destroyers, and fifty torpedo boats for decommissioning. Thirty-two auxiliary ships were to be disarmed and converted to merchant use.  Article 198 prohibited Germany from having an air force, including naval air forces, and required Germany to hand over all aerial related materials. In conjunction, Germany was forbidden to manufacture or import aircraft or related material for a period of six months following the signing of the treaty.

Germany either got around or completely violated every one of those conditions.  Meanwhile, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill was urging Parliament to rebuild their Navy, reporting that the German war machine was fully operational.  He was ignored and derided as a war-monger.

Here in the United States, FDR was at least a little more prescient.  He told the Gold Star Mothers of America that their sons would never again fight on foreign shores.  Meanwhile, the U.S. Army was preparing for battle with World War I tanks, planes, ships, uniforms, and according to my father, who joined up with his brother in 1938 to avoid being drafted as cannon fodder, World War I rations.

Time Magazine recently reported that “The Pentagon’s proposed 2015 budget will call for a future American Army smaller than any since before World War II, although defense spending supporting the shrunken force will remain above Cold War levels.

“That is the paradox of U.S. military might in the 21st century: the key elements of a fighting force—arms, and the personnel to operate them—have soared in per-platform and per-capita costs since the Cold War ended nearly a quarter-century ago. That means the nation is getting fewer troops and weapons for the $496 billion the Pentagon wants to spend next year.

“In previewing the budget on Monday, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said the military must adapt to a global landscape that’s becoming “more volatile, more unpredictable.”

“We are repositioning to focus on the strategic challenges and opportunities that will define our future: new technologies, new centers of power and a world that is growing more volatile, more unpredictable and in some instances more threatening to the United States,” Hagel said at the Pentagon.

“Today’s ‘low-cost’ warplane, the F-35, costs $160 million per copy, compared to its predecessor, the $20 million F-16. The cost per troop jumped from $55,000 in 1998 to $80,000 by 2009.  Atop those rising costs, Congress has steadfastly refused to shutter unneeded military bases. All the services have said they have at least 20 percent more real estate—Army and Marine ranges, Air Force runways and Navy ports—than they need.  Nonetheless, Congress refuses to allow any to close, fearing the impact on jobs in their districts and states. That means the nation is spending more dollars for less defense.”

– The Army, current about 530,000 troops, will drop by about 20% to 440,000 over the next several years. Weaning the U.S. military off its post-9/11 war footing won’t mean the U.S. can’t wage war, it’ll just mean that it will take longer to do so, and with more casualties.

– The Army will also kill its Ground Combat Vehicle Ground Combat Vehicle.

– The Air Force’s A-10 attack plane, commonly known as the A-10 Warthog, long loved by grunts on the ground, is on the chopping block.

– The National Guard will surrender its AH-64 Apache attack helicopters to the active-duty force. In exchange, the Guard will get the active-duty Army’s troop-carrying UH-60 Black Hawks.

– Hagel wants to limit pay hikes for troops to 1 percent, while admirals and generals would see their pay frozen for a year. Housing benefits also are likely to be trimmed, Pentagon officials say.

– The Air Force, under Hagel’s plan, will replace the storied, Cold War-era U-2 spy plane with unmanned Global Hawk drones.

Time notes:  “Hagel’s budget proposals have the support of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In part, that’s because the Pentagon’s proposed five-year spending plan will drive like a tank through the military-spending caps set under sequestration, calling for spending $115 billion more than the law currently allows. While troops and weapons may be on the decline, the dollars remain on the march.”

Just in time, Russia has raised its flag over the Ukraine Parliament in Crimea and moved nuclear missiles onto the island of Cuba, just 90 miles from the U.S. coast.  Where is a president like JFK or Ronald Reagan when we need him.  What do we have in their place?  An avowed Socialist who would gladly tear up the U.S. Constitution, send everyone over the age of 75 into oblivion, and has bowed to every common dictator on the planet.

The Left has long had the U.S. military in its crosshairs.  Time magazine agrees with Secretary of Defense Hagel that our military is “overpaid” and “overhoused.”  Giving the Army the National Guard’s Black Hawk attack helicopters might make some sense.  But what is the National Guard going to do with the Army’s troop-carrying Black Hawks.  Why, redistribute the population of the cities into the suburbs, no doubt.

Even as Iran, North Korea, and China are ramping up their arms, and Russian president Vladimir Putin is plotting the return of the Soviet Union (‘without the Communism,’ he says), we’re reducing our military capability to the power it had during World War I.  That’s like launching paper airplanes against Tomahawk missiles.

Meanwhile, the power of the bureaucratic government grows, taking our children as prisoners.  The Left declared war on what it called “The Nuclear Family” decades ago, when JFK was standing up to the threat of the Soviet Union.  They gained considerable ground in the Civil Rights Era battles of the 1960s, especially in regard to women’s rights and religious freedom.  My parents warned that in a future resembling the Soviet Union, children would be taken away from their parents.

They were right.  What’s more, public pressure, might rather than right, has declared that homosexual marriage will now be a common institution, not to be regarded any differently than traditional marriage, and woe to them who declare otherwise.  Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer was forced to concede that much, lest her state lose important businesses.

That Obama has decreased the military to the point of uselessness is a sign that he has won.  For what is left of American freedom, independence, and common sense for the military to defend?

Published in: on February 27, 2014 at 12:17 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Gay Lunch Counter

The Gay Lunch Counter

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is under pressure to veto legislation passed by the state’s Republican-controlled state legislature that would hold business immune from discrimination lawsuits if a decision to deny service was motivated by a “sincerely-held” religious faith and if providing service would substantially burden the exercise of those beliefs.

The bill is mainly aimed at those companies in the wedding industry:  photographers, caterers, bands, deejays, bakers, jewelers, dressmakers and so forth.  There will be some entrepreneurs who couldn’t care less about what the couple’s make-up is and others who would be uncomfortable going against their religious beliefs by enabling a homosexual wedding.

Is SB1062 American or should it be vetoed?

That’s the great thing about capitalism; there’s always someone ready to serve you, no matter what.  There are probably caterers and wedding planners rubbing their hands with glee at the prospect of such a niche business and competition that will be relieved of the burden of serving a clientele to whom they object.

If homosexual couples had no choice, if there were a death of photographers (believe me, there aren’t), bakers, caterers, reception halls and the like, SB1062 would definitely be wrong.  However, homosexual couples have recourse to other business owners who would be delighted to arrange their wedding for them.

This is not the lunch counter of the 1960s, where even here in New Jersey, certain diners were divided between white and black areas.  Theaters had black and white restrooms.  One city even had black and white water fountains.

Being black – or yellow, or red, or purple or blue – is not a sin.  Man made the Jim Crow laws, not God.  God did make Himself clear on the subject of homosexuality.  Even so, as a Christian nation, we looked askance at the horrid Sodomy Laws that dragged people out of their own, private homes until the laws were finally abolished.  Being a Christian nation, we were willing to give homosexuals a break, at least to a certain point, and allowed them to commit to civil unions.

But just as I feared, they pushed the envelope and now states, fearing discrimination lawsuits, are passing homosexual marriage laws as fast as they can write them.  The legislation puts those in the marriage business in a difficult situation, which the Arizona legislature and more than 30 other states are attempting to protect them against.

The camel has gotten his nose under the tent in the form of our progressive courts, however.  Justices today would rather recognize international law than God’s law; they certainly have no real respect for the U.S. Constitution, except when it proves useful in furthering the Progressive agenda.

Gov. Brewer should let the bill stand.  She’s at the end of her term as governor.  The courts will strike the law down soon enough as “unconstitutional.”  The days when a business can decide whom it will or will not serve are long past.  Photographers, bakers, dressmakers, and clergy should not be compelled to perform services that betray their religious beliefs.  But that was back when America was a free country.

Like Sodom and Gomorrah, we have been overrun by the blasphemers.  We would leave, if it were possible and if the world government hadn’t already outlawed outer space colonization.  We can only pray for God’s mercy and hope we aren’t turned to stone along with the unbelievers.

 

Published in: on February 26, 2014 at 11:59 am  Leave a Comment  

Update on Free Justina

A Suffolk County (Mass.) court has ruled that Justina Pelletier be placed in foster care, without medical treatment, until further court hearings can be held next month.  Justina’s mother, Linda, fainted upon hearing the ruling.

Aside from the fact that this dying girl and her family are suffering, the fact that no one is targeting the villain in this case is most distressing.  At the heart of all this misery is a Massachusetts’ bureaucracy called the Department of Children and Families (DCF).  And at the heart of every bureaucracy is a heartless bureaucrat.  In this case, DCF Commissioner Olga Roche by name.

Why no news agency, not even TheBlaze, is targeting this woman or shining the spotlight on her role in Justina’s case is completely unfathomable.  You need only google Massachusetts DCF to find all the information on her and her incompetence.  Is anyone listening and paying attention?!

Boston.com reported that two dozen Massachusetts lawmakers had sent a letter to Gov. Deval Patrick seeking the resignation of DCF Commissioner Olga Roche.  Citing what they called a mishandling of cases by the Department of Children and Families. Eight Democrats signed Thursday’s letter asking for the resignation of Commissioner Olga Roche.

The agency has been under scrutiny since social workers lost track of Jeremiah Oliver, a 5-year-old Fitchburg, Mass., boy who has not been seen by relatives since September and is feared dead. His mother and her boyfriend have pleaded not guilty to charges in connection with the case.

‘‘Both Democrats and Republicans agree that Commissioner Roche has not offered a comprehensive solution to solving the epic failures of the Department of Children and Families, and it is time for some leadership that will make protecting children its number one priority,’’ Republican State Rep. Ryan Fattman of Webster, Mass., said in a statement.

And now this.  A seriously ill child is essentially being held prisoner at Boston Children’s Hospital, now a ward of a state whose DCF commissioner is under fire to resign because of mishandling of cases.  They refuse to recognize the diagnosis of a competing hospital, throwing her original doctor out of the hospital.  The father has now been charged with contempt of court for pleading his daughter’s case to anyone who can and will broadcast it to anyone who will listen and help before the girl dies.

Since the ruling this morning, the decision on whether to charge the father with violating the gag order about discussing Justina’s case with the Media has also been put off until next month.  Well maybe the Media can’t talk about Justina but there’s no gag order on discussing Olga Roche and her mismanagement of the DCF.

TheBlaze.com reported this morning that “The Suffolk County judge presiding over the case of Justina Pelletier in Boston ruled Monday to put the 15-year-old in foster care, according to sources who have been characterized as speaking for the family.

“WTIC-TV’s reporter Beau Berman tweeted the news attributing it to “Reverend”:

“Coalition, briefed the media outside Suffolk County Juvenile Court where the hearing took place and is speaking on the family’s behalf.

“Berman also said Mat Staver, founder and chairman with Liberty Counsel, was serving in a similar role. Staver said in an interview with TheBlaze Monday afternoon that while he wasn’t allowed in the court room, he was informed by the family’s local lawyer and others that the judge ruled Justina be moved into foster care at a non-medical facility.

“Staver explained that he wasn’t allowed in the court room while this decision was made because he had to motion to be allowed in as an attorney for the family. The judge didn’t immediately grant this motion, Staver said, and is allowing DCF 48 hours to contest it.

“The teenager from West Hartford, Conn., became the subject of the custody battle between her parents — Lou and Linda Pelletier — and the Massachusetts Department of Children & Families after they disagreed with physicians at Boston Children’s Hospital over a medical diagnosis that was issued by a doctor at Tufts Medical Center.

“For the last year, the Pelletiers have been in and out of court while their daughter remained in a psychiatric ward at BCH, until a few weeks ago when she was moved to another facility.

“The Pelletier family’s reaction to today’s news was emotional. Lou Pelletier was seen yelling and at one point sitting on a bench crying, while Linda Pelletier fainted and was on her way to the hospital for evaluation, Staver said.

“Berman tweeted more on the immediate reaction of the family.

WTIC Fox reports:  “Linda Pelletier fainted inside a Boston courthouse Monday after learning that a judge ordered her daughter Justina placed into foster care.

“The 15-year-old West Hartford girl is at the center of a custody battle between her parents, Boston Children’s Hospital and the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families that has been going on since February 2013.

“Monday’s custody decision is only temporary, until the family’s next court date on March 17. But the announcement threw the teen’s parents and sisters into hysterics after the hearing.

According to WTIC Fox: “Linda Pelletier, 56, collapsed onto the fourth floor hallway and later was rolled out of the courthouse on a stretcher and taken to Mass. General Hospital for treatment.

“’Poor Linda Pelletier. I was standing next to her. She got light-headed. She’s diabetic. She’s 56 years old. She started to pass out. We had to grab her and hold her up. She was on the floor,’” said Rev. Patrick Mahoney.

“Rev. Mahoney flew to New England this weekend and joined the family at the Boston courthouse Monday, later telling the media he was speaking on their behalf.

“’We are going to bring people of faith, of goodwill, who believe in this, the millions across the country to be engaged with this. We are announcing the campaign ‘Free Justina’” said Rev. Mahoney.

The move to foster care means Justina will remain in Massachusetts state custody until the next court date.  Before the hearing Monday, her father, Lou Pelletier, addressed the media and seemed optimistic.

“’We’re keeping our fingers and toes crossed with what we’re about to see today, but as you’ve heard, we’re fighting to save my daughter’s life,’” he said.

“Inside the courthouse, two high-profile attorneys, Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel and David Gibbs of the National Center for Life and Liberty, were on hand to fight the gag order applied by Judge Joseph Johnston on Nov. 7, 2013.

“Further proceedings regarding the gag order were pushed to March as well.

“’It’s obviously an unusual situation. I think obviously the more people know about the situation or any proceeding, the better it is,’” said Staver.

Faith and pro-life advocates, Rev. Mahoney, of the Christian Defense Coalition, and Keith Mason, of Personhood USA, were in Boston to support the Pelletier family.

“Justina is being moved to foster care. They are outraged by that. There’s no medical attention there,” said Rev. Mahoney, who was with the parents on the fourth floor of the courthouse.

Both groups plan to launch nationwide support campaigns.

“We will be launching grassroots efforts with vigils. We will be doing phone call campaigns. We will be going to lawmakers here in the state of Massachusetts,” said Mason.

For now, the gag order remains in place.  The media were forced out of the fourth floor courthouse hallway Monday by court officials.  The Honorable Terry M. Craven told reporters they could not be on the fourth floor, which typically holds juvenile hearings. Fox CT news has previously covered the case on the fourth floor dating from November and had never before been instructed to leave the floor.  Linda Pelletier remained in the hospital Monday evening with her condition unclear to the media.

“She was hysterical. The family was crying. Here’s what they want:  They want their daughter with them. There’s no argument that she was doing better under their care than under the care of the government,” said Rev. Mahoney.

Fox CT was unable to obtain any comment from DCF employees present at the courthouse Monday.  A vigil has been scheduled for Justina and will likely be held near a foster care facility in Merrimac, Mass., at noon on Saturday March 1, according to Rev. Mahoney.

Read more: http://foxct.com/2014/02/24/west-hartford-teen-justina-pelletier-placed-in-mass-foster-care/#ixzz2uLqwFSr2

How much of this dilemma has to do with the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child, a human rights treaty which sets out the civil, political, economic, social, health and cultural rights of children? The Convention defines a child as any human being under the age of eighteen, unless the age of majority is attained earlier under a state’s own domestic legislation.

Nations that ratify this convention are bound to it by international law. Compliance is monitored by the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child, which is composed of members from countries around the world. Once a year, the Committee submits a report to the Third Committee of the United Nations General Assembly, which also hears a statement from the CRC Chair, and the Assembly adopts a Resolution on the Rights of the Child.

The U.S. has signed, but not ratified, this treaty.  The government played an active role in the drafting of the Convention and signed it on Feb. 16, under Pres. Clinton, but has not ratified it. The Convention is unlikely to be ratified in the near future because it forbids both the death penalty and life imprisonment for children (Article 37), though a ratify state can ratify subject to reservations or interpretations. It has been claimed that opposition to the Convention stems primarily from political and religious conservatives. For example, the Heritage Foundation sees it as threatening national control over domestic policy and the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) argues that the CRC threatens homeschooling. Since 2005, the Supreme Court decisions have found juvenile executions unconstitutional as “cruel and unusual punishment” and that mandatory sentences of life without the possibility of parole are unconstitutional for juvenile offenders.

Ruler-in-Chief Obama has described the failure to ratify the Convention as “embarrassing” and had promised to review this.  The United States has signed and ratified two of the optional protocols to the Convention, the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, and the Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography.

Article 4 (Protection of rights): Governments have a responsibility to take all available measures to make sure children’s rights are respected, protected and fulfilled. When countries ratify the Convention, they agree to review their laws relating to children. This involves assessing their social services, legal, health and educational systems, as well as levels of funding for these services. Governments are then obliged to take all necessary steps to ensure that the minimum standards set by the Convention in these areas are being met. They must help families protect children’s rights and create an environment where they can grow and reach their potential. In some instances, this may involve changing existing laws or creating new ones. Such legislative changes are not imposed, but come about through the same process by which any law is created or reformed within a country. Article 41 of the Convention points out that when a country already has higher legal standards than those seen in the Convention, the higher standards always prevail.

The U.N. treaty generally states that the sanctity of the parents and family must be respected, unless there is strong evidence of abuse, cruelty or neglect.  The DCF overreached far beyond its mandate in declaring that the Pelletiers neglected or abused Justina.

The time has come to remove Olga Roche from office and restore Justina to her parents.

Published in: on February 25, 2014 at 11:55 am  Leave a Comment  

The Model United Nations Club

While visiting my former alma mater, searching the library for a particular book by John A. Dewey (of which, the library assistant and I discovered, there were surprisingly few), I noticed signs for a graduate degree open house.

 

The open house was next to the library so it was no problem to walk over there.  Being unemployed, I have no money to pursue a graduate degree nor the necessary GRE score to gain admission.  Too bad, since one of the program offerings was in Library Science.  They wouldn’t like me, anyway; I’m totally opposed to Common Core, as are most of the teachers of my acquaintance.

 

My wiser older brother warned me long ago that if I wanted to get anywhere in a career, the master’s degree, in whatever, was absolutely de rigeur.  Too many people had their bachelor’s degrees.  Degree inflation had set in and in the future, if you wanted to work your way up the ladder, you just had to have that graduate degree.

 

He was right.  People in business tell me that they take all the bachelor’s degree applicants and toss them right in the wastebasket.  That’s especially true of the Communications and Public Relations field.  Prospective employers want to know you went that extra mile, even if you had to sell your soul, your first-born, and your entire financial future in order to get it.  You might spend your entire life just paying off that student loan, but you’d be working – and you’d have a goal.

 

All the while the Government and the Media, even the Conservative Media are telling students that they’re wasting their money on all these degrees.  The Bachelor’s should be enough.  But this is a competitive world.  Wealthy parents think nothing of spending thousands of dollars on SAT Prep courses for their young scholars to make sure they get into the right schools.  The Government spends millions making sure the disadvantaged receive that same chance; though often once they get to college, they’re ill-prepared for the rigid demands of college work.

 

I once met a woman who was her high school class valedictorian in Texas.  She was accepted to Vassar College, an exclusive, upper-class college in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.  Her first year was the toughest, she said.  Competing against students who had been tutored in Greek and Latin, advanced mathematics, and philosophy, she nearly flunked out.  She made it, though, and became a professional public relations specialist with some very big accounts.  But it wasn’t easy.

 

Common Core offers a seductively easy way out for the less brilliantly affluent students and their families:  why bother memorizing useless facts and formulas?  We’ll prepare you for a practical job not some damned fool idealistic crusade.  Why waste precious time learning the meaning of words like “self-abnegation”, “portcullis”, “fustian”, or “cozen”?  When will you ever use those words?

 

Are you ever likely to need to know Mollweide’s Equations or the lemniscate of Bernoulli?  Why would you ever need to know the three phases of latent heat (solid to liquid; liquid to gas; solid to gas)?  Will you ever have the need to know that the rotational analog of force is torque?  Oh, please, stop.

 

Why of course not.  That’s what we have the elite for.  If we just do our little jobs for the common good and accept the self-abnegation of our individuality, they’ll take care of things like the three phases of latent heat.  They’d rather not bother you with things like the lemniscate of Bernoulli.  First of all, it would take an eternity to explain it.  Secondly, they’d rather you not understand the second phase of latent heat because that would make a case for the efficiency of fossil fuels and natural gas.  If you knew that, you’d then not only know the meaning of “fustian” but expose their fustian and cozen reasons for embracing green energy.

 

Leave the ruling of the world to the elite.  You don’t want to rule the world, do you?  It’s a huge nuisance, especially if you’re not educated.  You’d have to learn to speak at least seven languages.   You would have to study the world’s greatest battle strategies and the dictators who applied them.  Wouldn’t you rather just go home to your spouse and kids and watch the soccer game?

 

The people who want to rule the world don’t especially want to have children.  They’re pro-abortion, um, pro-“choice”.  They want to rule the world.  Really.  I found one of their flyers on a billboard in the hallway of that building where the graduate open house was being held.

 

Interested in Diplomacy?  It asks.  “Do you want to RULE the world?”  “Then join the Model United Nations Club!”  “It’s SUPER HELLA FUN!!!”

 

They meet every Tuesday on campus around lunchtime.  I’d be curious to see what they have to say in their meetings.  However, this college has very little in the way of parking for visitors.  With all the winter snow piled up, even the students are finding it hard to park.  But I’ve kept their flyer.

 

‘It’s SUPER HELLA FUN to want to rule the world.’  This school has a Democrat Society, and SDS, but no Republican Club and certainly no TEA Party Club.  But they have a Model United Nations Club.

 

Yes sir, these kids are up on the times.  They know which side of the world their bread is going to be buttered on.  They’re not interested in democracy, that’s for sure.  And if you rule the world, you don’t need to worry about diplomacy; it’s your way or the highway.  The “hella” with diplomacy.

 

Their agenda is all set for them:  Agenda 21 (or as we call it in the cautious United States, Sustainable Development); International Gun Control; Environmentalism (you have to be able plant your flag anywhere in the world if you want to rule it); The Year of the Child and the removal of parental rights; the redistribution of wealth; Intolerance legislation to protect worshippers of Islam; Common Core.

 

Remaking the world is quite a project.  It has to begin when you’re young.  But the reward is in the end you’ll get to RULE THE WORLD!  Awesome.

 

Published in: on February 24, 2014 at 12:09 pm  Leave a Comment  

Government Watchdogs to Hound Newshounds

The first, initial reaction to the news that the FCC, a bureaucracy instituted by FDR in 1934, wants to install human monitors in television, cable television, and print media newsrooms to make sure they comply with the government’s social engineering program, was laughter from this Conservative.

 

The Media already does their bidding; what more does the Government want them to do?  The Media does everything but put on cheerleader costumes and wave pom-poms.     

 

Nevertheless, the Federal Communications Commission is sending out investigators to radio and TV stations throughout the country — and to daily and weekly newspapers too — asking intrusive questions about how they decide what news to cover.

The questions, being sent to assignment editors, on-air reporters, print correspondents, editors, publishers, and owners all ask who makes the decision and based on what criteria.  

The FCC will also do a content analysis of every radio and TV station and newspapers to see if they are covering each of 8 areas of  “critical information” adequately including the environment, economic opportunity, poverty etc.

Since radio and TV stations must apply for licenses every 8 years, the questions are highly intimidating and could lay the basis for federal censorship.

The FCC is basing its study on a “finding” by the Annenberg School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Southern California that news media now does not adequately cover the news of importance to minority populations.
8 years, the questions are highly intimidating and could lay the basis for federal censorship.

The FCC is basing its study on a “finding” by the Annenberg School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Southern California that news media now does not adequately cover the news of importance to minority populations.

 

According to PJ Media:  “In its most radical move in decades, the Federal Communications Commission is looking to insert its officers into newsrooms around the country.  Fox News Wednesday that the FCC says that it has identified eight “underserved populations” and is now looking for ways to make sure that those communities get more new coverage.

 

“The Multi-Market Study of Critical Information Needs (CINs) initiative was proposed last May. The FCC explained that it wanted information from television and radio broadcasters “to ascertain the process by which stories are selected, station priorities (for content production quality and populations served), perceived station bias, perceived percent of news dedicated to each of the eight CIN’s and perceived responsiveness to underserved populations.”

 

“The FCC has identified eight CINs, or key topics that the government believes should be covered.  The possibility of the FCC even suggesting topics for media news coverage is chilling.

 

“The FCC claims that the study is ‘voluntary,’ but the commission licenses the broadcasters that it seeks to monitor. The threat of penalties and even license revocation is real.

 

“FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai warns that the study has the potential to become a heavy-handed means of pressuring reporters into making editorial decisions that fall in line with government wishes.

 

“Last May, the FCC proposed an initiative to thrust the federal government into newsrooms across the country. With its “Multi-Market Study of Critical Information Needs,” or CIN, the agency plans to send researchers to grill reporters, editors and station owners about how they decide which stories to run. A field test in Columbia, S.C., is scheduled to begin this spring.

The purpose of the CIN, according to the FCC, is to ferret out information from television and radio broadcasters about ‘the process by which stories are selected’ and how often stations cover ‘critical information needs,’ along with ‘perceived station bias’ and ‘perceived responsiveness to underserved populations.’

 

“The study was supposed to begin this week, but so far the FCC’s officers have not shown up. Republicans in Congress are urging the FCC to scuttle the monitoring plan.

 

“The study comes at a time when the Department of Justice has been caught tracking the movements of reporters and bugging their phone lines. It comes after Americans have learned that the National Security Agency has been scooping up information on our online and social media activity and our cell phone metadata.

 

“The FCC has repeatedly sought to expand its authority over the Internet via “net neutrality,” and over newspapers, which have never been subjected to FCC scrutiny before. The FCC was created to regulate broadcast transmissions via radio, television, wire, satellite and cable, but not content of media reports. FCC commissioners are presidential appointments. All of the commission’s five members were appointed to their posts by President Obama, but only three may belong to the president’s political party at any one time.

 

“The First Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the freedom of speech individually and for the media, stating that “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of the press.” The FCC’s CIN study appears to be a means of getting around the First Amendment.  Congress is not being tasked with passing a law allowing the monitoring of newsrooms.  No such law would get through both houses of Congress, and if one did, it would never stand up in court.

 

“The United States under President Barack Obama has fallen to 46th place in the world in press freedom, according to Reporters Without Borders.”

 

When I worked in company public relations, every word we wrote underwent scrutiny.  Did we do enough “branding” (mention the company’s name enough).  Was the company positively represented?  Were the employees properly vetted through two managerial levels?  Were they employees of good standing?  If a claim was pending (I worked for an insurance company), had the lawyers thoroughly reviewed it?  We always knew when they had because the stories came back unreadable.

 

We writers understood and had no problem with it.  This was the company’s magazine or website; it was their dime.

 

But for the government to be demanding oversight of public newspapers and radio and television outlets reaches way beyond their mandate as provided for by the Constitution’s First Amendment.  What they’re trying to do is one of the reasons the American Revolution occurred in the first place.

 

Low-information voters may never have heard of Peter Zenger (the other morning, TheBlaze tried an experiment on the streets of Manhattan, with a reporter asking people on the street if they knew that Franklin Roosevelt had died.  Their responses were appalling and risible:  ‘Oh that’s terrible.  He was a great man.  Our prayers go out to his family.  He did a lot of great things for America, like Manifest Destiny.’).

 

Pete Zenger.  Oh yeah, yeah.  He played bass guitar with the Grateful Dead!  Uh – no.  Benjamin Franklin wrote in his “Apology to Printers” that, ‘If all printers were determined not to print any thing till they were sure it would offend no body, there would be very little printed.”

 

John Peter Zenger (October 26, 1697 – July 28, 1746) was a German American printer, publisher, editor, and journalist in New York City.  Zenger printed The New York Weekly Journal.  He was a defendant  in a landmark legal case known as “The Zenger Trial,” in which his lawyer, Andrew Hamilton, established that truth is a defense against charges of libel. In late 1733, Zenger began printing The New York Weekly Journal to voice his opinions critical of the colonial governor, William Cosby.  In November 1734, Zenger was arrested by the sheriff on the orders of Cosby and after a grand jury refused to indict him was charged with libel in August 1735 by the attorney general Richard Bradley.

Upon his arrival in New York, Cosby plunged into a rancorous quarrel with the Council of the Colony over his salary.  Unable to control the state’s supreme court he removed Chief Justice Lewis Morris, replacing him with James DeLancey of the Royal Party. Supported by members of the popular party, Zenger’s New-York Weekly Journal continued to publish articles critical of the royal governor. Finally, Cosby issued a proclamation condemning the newspaper’s “divers scandalous, virulent, false, and seditious reflections.”

Zenger was arrested and charged with seditious libel on Nov. 17, 1734. After more than eight months in prison, Zenger went to trial defended by illustrious Philadelphia lawyer Andrew Hamilton. The case was now a cause celebre with public interest at fever-pitch. Rebuffed repeatedly by Chief DeLancey during the trial, Hamilton decided to plead his client’s case directly to the jury. After the arguments for both sides were finished, the jury was retired, only to return in ten minutes with a verdict of not guilty.

 

In his defense, Zenger wrote, through his New York Weekly Journal:

“Government is that sacred Institution, the Late Chief Justice called it, and the Magistrates and Ministers of it, the Channels thro’ which the Blessings intended by it flow to the Society, and the Protectors of them  in the Injoyment of them; and to speak irreverently and disrespectfully of Magistrates and Government, considered as such , was and is, always will be, criminal in the Sight of God and Men.  – A good Magistrate  is one of the greatest temporal blessings, and an ill one is one of the greatest Curses, God can give to Men; and while Magistrates Act suitable to the good Intention of their Institution, they will acquire (as they deserve) a suitable Return of Praise, and gratefull Acknowledgments of, the good they do.  But when a Magistrate acts differently from the Ends of his Institution, and in Stead of Protecting of me uses his Power to oppress me, when he warps the Laws, which were made for the Preservation of the Society, and turns them to their Destruction, and makes Power, and not Right, the Rule and Measure of his Actions, he cannot, nor ought not, to claim any Respect, because he deserves none.  To give such a Magistrate publick or private Respect, is acting against the Ends of Government and common Sense; is joyning with him in making those miserable that he was sent to make happy.  And to speak well of him when he is know to do Ill, is right down Lying; which the greatest Advocates for Tyranny, how much so ever they desire it, won’t have the Face to own, that any Man is under a natural or moral Obligation to do, but the contrary, I am sure the People of England thought so, in the latter end of the Reign of Charles the 2nd, and in the Reign of King James the 2nd, when the Liberties of the Nation were given up by the Judges, whose Names and Memory will be infamous, while Liberty and History remain.  If they had not thought it lawfull to speak of Men as they deserved, and had not spoke, AND ACTED TOO, against that King and his Ministers (not withstanding their high Stations) we should not now have been sensible of the blessed Effects of a GLORIOUS REVOLUTION, where the Hand of God (as if often has done) as well as Man, appeared on the Side of Liberty…

“I don’t well know what the Observer means by Libels against the Government.  Some People have a Knack of calling any Paper they don’t like, that treats of Governours or Magistrates, a Libel against the Government; or if an ill Governour or Magistrate is described, or the ill Actions of any such, they (by a Happiness of Intervention peculiar to themselves) presently think it is leveled at the Governour and Magistrates for the Time being.  Ask them why they think so?  They’ll immediately reply that the Thing is very plain.  Ask them wherein?  But to that they’ll make no Reply, but that it is so.”

The Colonists were fighting back against the British Crown, whose argument that any criticism of the government was seditious libel.  But Zenger’s lawyers argued that if the criticism was true, no matter how damaging it might be to the subject, it was not libel.

Joe Wilson was censured by the Senate for calling our Dictator-in-Chief a liar when he promised that the Affordable Care Act would make health care affordable for all Americans.  We have come very far from the foundation of the Constitution, if reporters, radio and television hosts, and even bloggers must live in fear that they might offend the government, or fail or refuse to comply with the government’s mandates, the result being that their license to broadcast, print or post is revoked.

This FCC “experiment” is bad news for all Americans.  We TEA partiers knew something was wrong when Republican operatives told us to take down our signs.  Some of us knew.  In a separate move against website operators, the FCC is considering the Net Neutrality Rules.

All this is being done without the consent of Congress, by a bureaucracy unaccountable to the people of the United States or their Congress.  The FCC is under no obligation to abide by the Constitution.  All broadcasters can hope to do is bring a lawsuit against the FCC in the future and hope that by that time the Supreme Court isn’t backed with Liberal, Progressive magistrates.

We need to act against this usurpation of our First Amendment rights before it’s too late.  For once this kind of regulation is implemented, we will have no recourse to the truth or justice.  We will hear only what the Government wants to know and say only what the Government wants to hear, and if a broadcaster or publisher does not comply, they can be fined, imprisoned and put out of business.

The last free words you’ll hear or read will be:  “The End.”

 

Published in: on February 21, 2014 at 3:30 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Return of the New Jersey Residential Foreclosure Transformation Act

One of the most outrageous proposals of the last legislative session is back. On Thurs., Feb. 20, (that’s today)  the Assembly Housing & Community Development Committee will take up the “New Jersey Residential Foreclosure Transformation Act,” Bill A470.  This reckless legislation would authorize the State to borrow billions of dollars to purchase foreclosed homes throughout the state-then use the properties to fill the state’s “affordable housing” quotas, including housing them with drug addicts, ex-cons, and sex offenders.

Assembly Housing and Community Development
Thursday, February 20, 2014 – 2:00 PM
Meeting – Committee Room 9, 3rd Floor, State House Annex, Trenton, N.J.

An Act concerning the foreclosure of residential properties, the transfer and dedication of foreclosed residential properties for affordable housing, and supplementing Title 2A of the New Jersey Statutes and Title 55 of the Revised Statutes.

                                                     

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    This act shall be known and may be cited as the “New Jersey Residential Foreclosure Transformation Act.”

 

     2.    The Legislature finds and declares that:

     a.    In recent years, there has been an enormous expansion in the number of mortgage foreclosure filings in New Jersey and across the nation.  The number of mortgage foreclosure actions filed in the New Jersey Courts grew from just over 20,000 in 2005 to more than 51,000 in 2008, 66,000 in 2009, and 58,000 in 2010.

     b.    Preliminary information indicates a decline in the number of residential mortgage foreclosure filings over 2011.  However, this decline is largely attributable to actions undertaken by the New Jersey Judiciary which, in December of 2010, suspended the processing of uncontested residential foreclosures by the six biggest lenders in order to address “robo-signing” and other processing irregularities.

     c.    Despite this decline, it has been reported that more than one in 10 New Jersey mortgage loans are already in foreclosure or are 90 days or more in arrears.  Because of the large number of foreclosures filed during the 2009-2010 period, and the Judiciary’s suspension of foreclosure processing, reports indicate that as of August 2011 more than 100,000 residential foreclosure cases were still open.  Now that the courts have resumed processing foreclosures for the big six lenders, it is widely believed that foreclosure filings will increase during 2012.  This is due in part to the large number of mortgages that are seriously delinquent, more than 90 days past due.  Reports have indicated that during the suspension period mortgage lenders were waiting to file more than 28,000 additional foreclosures and that another 55,000 mortgage loans were over 90 days delinquent.

     d.    Many of these foreclosed residential properties are vacant, undermining the health, safety, and economic vitality of neighborhoods, depressing their property values, and reducing revenues to municipalities.

     e.    It is the public policy of this State to encourage the production of low-income and moderate-income housing to serve the general welfare of all the State’s residents.

      f.  The availability of tens of thousands of foreclosed residential properties presents a unique opportunity for the State to facilitate the purchase and dedication, or the rental, of housing units for low-income and moderate-income residents.

     g.    Establishment of a temporary State entity dedicated to the purpose of identifying foreclosed residential properties and facilitating their purchase and dedication for occupancy or their rental, including but not limited to low-income and moderate-income families, is in the public interest of the State.

The last three items – e., f., and g., tell the story; this is all about social engineering.  The state government taxed business right out of the state, taking their living-wage jobs with them.  Then, Jimmy Carter’s CORA (Community Reinvestment Act) finished its long work of ruining savings and loan associations, banks, and mortgage institutions.  The Secretary of the Treasury then lowered interest rates to a dangerous level, encouraging people who couldn’t afford houses to take out very long-term mortgages on expensive houses.  All the while, the Democrats blamed the Republicans for the eventual economic collapse.

Now that neighborhoods are in ruins, homes abandoned, businesses boarded, the state bureaucrats figure it’s time for a “fire sale” by which they can redistribute the wealth and relocate welfare families into the midst of the hapless suburbs, increasing crime, lowering educational standards, and destroying property values.

Americans For Prosperity fought this bill hard last session by exposing the facts about this offensive and outrageous piece of legislation. They post a  hard-hitting YouTube ad.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOcBqy2SrKU&feature=youtu.be

The voices of TEA Party activists were instrumental in convincing Gov. Christie to issue an absolute veto of the foreclosure bill. You and I will defeat this bill again. But first, the members of the Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee need to hear from you! Contact the members listed above and tell them to vote NO on the ridiculous foreclosure scheme and to stop meddling in the housing market!  Contact these committee members now! Tell them to vote NO on the outrageous foreclosure scheme! 

Please call and say NO to this destructive piece of social-engineering legislation. 

Legislator (click to e-mail)              Phone#
Asm. Jerry Green (D-22) – Chair        908-561-5757
Asw. Mila Jasey (D-27) – Vice-Chair   973-762-1886
Asm. Angel Fuentes (D-05)               856-541-1251
Asw. Maria Rodriguez-Gregg (R-08)   609-654-1498
Asm. Robert Clifton (R-12)                732-446-3408
Asm. Jason O’Donnell (D-31)
            201-436-0961

 

                       

 

Published in: on February 20, 2014 at 11:38 am  Leave a Comment  

Justice for Justina – And Her Dad

Justina Pelletier, now 15, was diagnosed with mitochondrial disease by physicians at Tufts Medical Center in Boston.  Doctors at Boston Children’s Hospital disagreed with the diagnosis, believing she had somatoform disorder instead.

Mitochondrial diseases result from failures of the mitochondria, specialized compartments present in every cell of the body except red blood cells. Mitochondria are responsible for creating more than 90% of the energy needed by the body to sustain life and support growth. When they fail, less and less energy is generated within the cell. Cell injury and even cell death follow. If this process is repeated throughout the body, whole systems begin to fail, and the life of the person in whom this is happening is severely compromised. The disease primarily affects children, but adult onset is becoming more and more common.

Diseases of the mitochondria appear to cause the most damage to cells of the brain, heart, liver, skeletal muscles, kidney and the endocrine and respiratory systems.

Depending on which cells are affected, symptoms may include loss of motor control, muscle weakness and pain, gastro-intestinal disorders and swallowing difficulties, poor growth, cardiac disease, liver disease, diabetes, respiratory complications, seizures, visual/hearing problems, lactic acidosis, developmental delays and susceptibility to infection

A somatoform disorder is a mental disorder characterized by symptoms that suggest physical or injury – symptoms that cannot be explained fully by a general medical condition or by the direct effect of a substance, and are not attributable to another mental disorder (e.g., panic disorder).   In people who have a somatoform disorder, medical test results are either normal or do not explain the person’s symptoms, and history and physical examination do not indicate the presence of a medical condition that could cause them.

Patients with this disorder often become worried about their health because doctors are unable to find a cause for their symptoms. This may cause severe distress. Preoccupation with the symptoms may portray a patient’s exaggerated belief in the severity of their ill-health.  Symptoms are sometimes similar to those of other illnesses and may last for several years. Usually, the symptoms begin appearing during adolescence, and patients are diagnosed before the age of 30 years.  Symptoms may occur across cultures and gender. Other common symptoms include anxiety and depression.  In order for an individual to be diagnosed with somatoform disorder, they must have recurring somatic complaints for several continuous years.

Somatoform disorders are not the result of conscious malingering (fabricating or exaggerating symptoms for secondary motives) or factitious disorders (deliberately producing, feigning, or exaggerating symptoms) – sufferers perceive their plight as real. Additionally, a somatoform disorder should not be confused with the more specific diagnosis of a somatization disorder. Various laboratory tests, physical examinations, and surgeries on these individuals show no evidence supporting the idea that these exaggerating symptoms are present.  Mental disorders are treated separately from physiological or neurological disorders. Somatoform disorder is difficult to diagnose and treat since doing so requires psychiatrists to work with neurologists on patients with this disorder.  Those that do not pass the diagnostic criteria for a somatoform disorder but still present physical symptoms are usually referred to as having “somatic preoccupation.”

In presenting these two definitions, there is no suggestion intended that Justina is suffering from hypochondria; it’s just so you know what Boston Children’s is accusing the girl of having.  The hospital, however, appears to be suffering from Napoleon syndrome.  According to the father, Boston Children’s has ties to Harvard University, which in turn has many political ties.  They seem more concerned with their reputation than with treating this teenager.

Once the gag order was in place, the mainstream media would no longer touch the story.  That’s when Lou Pelletier contacted Glenn Beck about his daughter’s plight.

The Pelletiers lost custody, at least temporarily, of Justina to the DCG on Feb. 14, 2013. After taking her to Boston Children’s Hospital a few days prior when she had the flu, they say doctors at the hospital wanted to change her treatment regimen. Those physicians believed Justina had somatoform disorder, a psychological disorder that said the symptoms she experienced were all in her head.  The Pelletiers, however, disagreed and believed she should continue treatment for mitochondrial disease, a disease she was diagnosed with and had been treated for by doctors at Tufts Medical Center.

When the Pelletiers went to Boston Children’s Hospital on Valentine’s Day 2013 to have their daughter discharged and taken to Tufts, they were served with a 51A form instead — one that accused them of medical abuse. Essentially, they were accused of treating their daughter medically in a way that she didn’t need.

Since that day, the Pelletiers have had limited communication with their daughter and faced numerous court hearings as it is still being decided what will happen with regard to her custody and treatment. The next court date for this case was on Monday, Jan. 24.

TheBlaze reached out to the Suffolk County Family and Probate Court to confirm the filing and were told to contact juvenile court in this case instead. The Suffolk County Juvenile Court Division told TheBlaze it could neither confirm nor deny a contempt of court filing at the time because records within the division are confidential because they involve children.

The Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF) filed for Lou Pelletier — the father of 15-year-old Justina Pelletier who is the center of a controversy and legal battle involving custody, parents’ rights and two medical diagnoses — to be held in contempt of court, a family source told TheBlaze.

When Pelletier spoke with TheBlaze this week about Justina and the controversy regarding her diagnosis that led custody to be taken away from her parents for the last year, he broke a gag order issued by a Massachusetts judge.

The source, who asked to remain anonymous fearing further legal repercussions, said Tuesday the state’s DCF filed that Pelletier be held in contempt of court for breaking the order, using stories on TheBlaze and one that appeared last week in the New York Daily News as evidence.

Pelletier admitted to TheBlaze earlier this week that he wasn’t sure if his speaking out would help his family or hurt it.

“Should I even be doing what I’m doing today?” Lou told TheBlaze Monday. “You’re scared. If I do this, is it going to make it worse for Justina? Is it going to make it better?  I need to save my daughter. It’s not this court house. It’s not the state of Massachusetts,” he said at another point in our interview. “If we don’t do something, she is going to die.”

The injunction preventing the Pelletiers from talking publicly about their daughter in the context of the case was issued Nov. 7, 2013, according to WTIC-TV. The gag order was issued after the media investigation by WTIC’s Beau Berman.

Going against a gag order, if found in contempt of a court order, could be considered either civil or criminal.  Civil contempt of court would involve a failure to obey a court order. Criminal contempt of court is often issued as punishment to prevent future acts of contempt.

Penalties for being found in contempt of court, depending on the type, range from being required to pay the legal fees to paying a fine to jail time.

Jim Ianiri, an attorney in the Boston area who has been involved in custody battles over medical issues since the 1990s but who is not involved in this case, shared his legal expertise with TheBlaze about this situation.

“The court is going to determine whether or not to hold [a person] in contempt of court, and then impose the appropriate penalties, if you will, on that,” Ianiri explained.

A party files a motion to find someone in contempt of court. Then a judge would have to grant the motion, or allow motion, and then find someone in contempt of court or not in contempt of court, Ianiri continued.

“What they’re looking for is a contempt order. An order finding [someone] is in contempt could result in a fine,” he said.

Ianiri also speculated that in this case it would be civil contempt of court, as he thought criminal “is a little more extreme.”

In an interview with Glenn Beck this morning on his radio program, Justina’s father said that Justina’s former doctor came to check up on her at Boston Children’s.  Her mother was with her.  Justina and her mother gave the doctor a big hug.  Then, the father relates, in a blink of an eye, a social worker came into the room, grabbed the doctor by the collar and dragged him out, telling him he had no authorization to be there.

This appalling story is what happens when government gets involved in health care.  Parents are denied the right to choose the most effective treatment for their daughter?  When they protest and come to transfer their daughter back to the original hospital, where she was being successfully treated, the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families takes custody away from the parents, and won’t even allow them to see their child?  When the father takes his case to the Media, the judge slaps a gag order on him, threatening him with a hefty and imprisonment if breaks the order?  And when he reaches out to a media outlet (TheBlaze) beyond the government’s reach to threaten and intimidate, the charge is issued by the judge?

This could be any of your children.  Or an elderly parent.  Or you.  Massachusetts is one of those states that adopted its own form of universal health care – and this is the result.  This is the government determining it knows what’s better for your children than you or your own doctor.  This is a government stifling and even criminalizing your right to protest and demand redress.  This is the government censoring the media.  This is a government grossly abusing its powers.

Five days ago, Boston.com reported that two dozen Massachusetts lawmakers had sent a letter to Gov. Deval Patrick seeking the resignation of DCF Commissioner Olga Roche.  Citing what they called a mishandling of cases by the Department of Children and Families. Eight Democrats signed Thursday’s letter asking for the resignation of Commissioner Olga Roche.

The agency has been under scrutiny since social workers lost track of Jeremiah Oliver, a 5-year-old Fitchburg, Mass., boy who has not been seen by relatives since September and is feared dead. His mother and her boyfriend have pleaded not guilty to charges in connection with the case.

‘‘Both Democrats and Republicans agree that Commissioner Roche has not offered a comprehensive solution to solving the epic failures of the Department of Children and Families, and it is time for some leadership that will make protecting children its number one priority,’’ Republican State Rep. Ryan Fattman of Webster, Mass., said in a statement.

And now this.  A seriously ill child is essentially being held prisoner at Boston Children’s Hospital, now a ward of a state whose DCF commissioner is under fire to resign because of mishandling of cases.  They refuse to recognize the diagnosis of a competing hospital, throwing her original doctor out of the hospital.  The father has now been charged with contempt of court for pleading his daughter’s case to anyone who can and will broadcast it to anyone who will listen and help before the girl dies.

A sick girl being treated (or in this case, being denied treatment) by a severely dysfunctional, bureaucratic, politically-connected medical system.  What’s the name for this disease?

Statopia?  Sociophrenia?  Totalitaraform?  Whatever it is, it’s contagious.

What’s the cure?

An injection of pure freedom.

Good luck to Mr. Pelletier and our prayers to Justina that she’ll be both well and free, very soon.

Published in: on February 19, 2014 at 11:18 am  Leave a Comment  

It Takes a Transit Village to Create a Crisis: The Fort Lee Phenomenon

Some Democrat was taking advantage of the Fort Lee traffic crisis to pounce on N.J. Gov. Chris Christie.  He asked in exasperation how the governor of a state could not know what was going on in his own state or what his assistants and nominees to bureaucratic office were doing about what, to him, seemed like a major crisis – a traffic jam.

The answer is simple:  this is New Jersey.  And the answer to why our governor would “ignore” a traffic jam crisis in Fort Lee, on the George Washington Bridge approach:  that’s just Fort Lee for you.

Not being from the state, whoever this legislator is can be excused for ignorance.  Traffic in Fort Lee is a mess just about every workday.  A traffic jam in that town or at the GW is not news; it’s a fact of life.  If some aide came to the governor and told him there was a traffic jam problem in Fort Lee, he may well have shrugged it off – he’s a Jersey guy.  He only became alarmed when he discovered one of his aides was responsible for creating it.

Right here in this column, we challenged the Media to do something besides join in the Christie Crushing and get to the heart of the real problem in Fort Lee:  the over-building, over-crowding, one-way traffic-unfriendly schematic of the town and its neighbors who must go through Fort Lee to reach the bridge.

The Record (of North Jersey) finally came through and published an investigate article in this past Sunday’s edition, by staff writer Linh Tat, detailing Fort Lee’s many woes.

Traffic is a challenge in Fort Lee everyday

http://www.northjersey.com/fortlee/fort_lee_traffic_george_washington_bridge.html

Linh Tat writes about the soon-to-be traffic nightmare that will plague Fort Lee once a half-dozen more high-rise apartments are built there and in neighboring towns.  Fort Lee only comprises 2.5 square miles.  The newest pair of high rises – each 47 storeys – will tower over the bridge.  And all those tenants will have cars.  Two cars if a couple occupies a unit and possibly.

In 2008, Gov. Christie turned down a proposal to build a new rail tunnel from North Bergen to Midtown Manhattan.  The proposal included a light rail service running from Fort Lee to Weehawken, or wherever the tunnel would actually begin.  We were in the midst of the financial crisis and the governor didn’t want to put the state into more debt by adopting such a costly project.

He acted precisely the way the environmentalists hoped he would, because he inadvertently set the stage for the crisis that will probably cost him his presidential bid and will allow them to carry out their transit village plan.  Without the crisis, their plan wouldn’t have worked.

Anyone who heard about Fort Lee’s ambitious residential projects would have thought the town council was out of its collective mind.  The current residents thought so.  The town was already too crowded.  Where were all these cars going to go?  As far as the Sustainable Community crowd is concerned, to the junk heap.  And if they can keep a popular Republican governor from claiming the presidency in 2016, so much the better.

The town went ahead and allowed the developers to build their high-rises.  So did the other communities.  Call it The Chaos-Theory-on-the-Hudson.  Too many people and too many cars on too small a parcel of land.  Pile them all on top of the Palisades and eventually you’d have a theoretical landslide right into the laps of the Sustainable Communities activists.

Now that the high-rises were up, it was just a matter of demanding that the state, under the auspices of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, “do” something about it.  So, the state agreed to do a traffic study to find out what the problem was.

The traffic study and its resultant traffic jam is small potatoes compared to the governor’s vetoing the rail tunnel.  But a traffic snarl, common as they are on the GW, with commuters weeping and wailing and cursing the governor, would play well before the cameras.  Then New Jersey’s Democrat legislature could demand an “investigation.”  Republican heads would roll.

As for New Jersey’s Gold Coast, these wealthy urbanites will eventually get their rail tunnel.  There’s just one catch:  they’ll have to get rid of their cars.  My personal prediction will be that ordinances will be passed dictating that anyone living in a building of so many units and so many storeys – say, 40 storeys – will not be allowed to keep cars.  The residents of these buildings will be like freshman on a college campus:  you don’t need your cars; you’ll have to stay on campus (for the most part) and use the college transit system.  If you do need to go anywhere in a car, rent one.

Gov. Christie’s aide was right in his or her comment, snarky though it may sound:  Bergen County is mainly Democrat.  They’ve asked for this.  Worse still, these are transplanted New Yorkers, either from the city or Long Island.  One of the attractions of those high-rise units was their parking garages.  The tenants (or condo owners) could keep their cars.

But now the crisis is upon them.  Fort Lee has reached that catastrophic peak where the wave starts to curl, the mountain of snow begins to crumble, the forewarning of an avalanche.  The 12-lane bridge can only handle just so much traffic before it begins to regularly back up.  Six lanes into the city, the top three commandeered by the truck traffic.  That means commuters from Bergen County must share those three lower lanes with the commuters approaching the bridge from farther west.  Three lanes; that’s all there are.

So Gold Coast residents – mainly all good Democrats – must decide:  surrender their automobiles or condemn the entire area to daily, hours-long commutes to a city that, under “normal” traffic conditions, is a mere three minutes away – once you’re on the bridge.

Sustainable Communities will lull them into the notion that, with mass transit, everything they need or want is just a walk or a short train-ride away.  What do they need a car for?  Think of all the expenses they would save:  no more car insurance, maintenance, car tolls ($12 on the GW), parking fees in the garage.  Let the government get you where you want to go.

At least until the electricity goes out.  Or the transit union goes on strike.  Or another hurricane floods the city.  Well, none of that is any worse than an accident on the Cross Bronx on the other side of the river.  Or a suicide jumper.  Or monstrous icicles hanging from the bridge’s towers.  There are always downsides to everything.

High-rise residents will naturally protest and point out that if they have the mass transit for commuting, there’s no reason for them to get rid of their cars. Even Bergen County Democrats still have a remnant of that love of freedom so dear to most Americans, the independence to decide when they’re going to go someplace (on the weekends) and where they can go (like the Garden State Plaza Mall or to visit some relative in western New Jersey lucky enough to have a home with some acreage).

The answer to that will be even more mass transit, and consequently, even higher taxes for the remaining, though dwindling, property owners in New Jersey.  As businesses flee the state, there will be more jobs lost, replaced by lower-paying jobs.  Homeowners will be unable to pay their mortgages or their taxes, and those homes, too, will be lost, to be replaced by more human warehouses.

We will all be squashed into small, uncomfortable, crime-breeding, frustrating compartments unable to move or breathe.  Which means we will all be “equal,” according to Sustainable Community standards.  We must make this sacrifice, they will tell us, for Mother Earth.

To that silly, out-of-state Democrat legislator expressing his frustration with New Jersey:  welcome to the “Garden State,” pal.

Published in: on February 18, 2014 at 10:35 am  Leave a Comment  

President’s Day, 2014

On this Presidents Day, 2014, we could spend hours on endless presidential trivia.  Martin Van Buren spoke Dutch as a child, not English.  James Polk’s made a prophetic election promise not to be elected to a second term and three weeks after leaving office, he died of cholera.  Benjamin Harrison was afraid of electricity.  Andrew Jackson was actually the first president to have someone attempt to assassinate him.  Jackson, however, was not frog-marched away; angry at the attack, when the assassin’s gun misfired, Jackson turned around and beat him with his walking stick.  Onlookers had to drag Jackson off the man before he could kill him.

Grover Cleveland was the first president to install a telephone in the White House, often answering it himself. Franklin Pierce was arrested, while president, for running over a woman with his horse.  He was released and the case dismissed for lack of evidence.

The smallest President was James Madison at 5 feet, 4 inches, weighing less than 100 pounds.  The tallest President was Abraham Lincoln. He stood 6 feet, 4 inches (193 centimeters) tall.

The heaviest President was William Howard Taft, who sometimes tipped the scales at more than 300 pounds.

Benjamin Harrison, the 23nd President, was the first President to attend a baseball game. William Howard Taft started the tradition of the Presidential “first pitch” of baseball season. The event took place on April 4, 1910, during an opening day game between the Washington Senators and the Philadelphia Athletics.

William Henry Harrison, the ninth President, died of pneumonia one month to the day after making—in the snow—the longest U.S. presidential inauguration speech on record.

Zachary Taylor, the 12th President, died in 1850 of an inflamed stomach and intestines just 16 months after he took office. Warren Harding died suddenly on August 2, 1923. Medical records suggest Harding battled high blood pressure and died of a heart attack. But rumors at the time claimed Harding either took his own life or was poisoned by his wife, who sought to end Harding’s notorious philandering.

John Adams, the second President, and Thomas Jefferson, the third President, both died on July 4, 1826. Calvin Coolidge was born on July 4, 1872.

The first President born a U.S. citizen was Martin Van Buren. Van Buren was delivered on Dec. 5, 1782, making him the first President born after the Declaration of Independence was signed.  In 1943 Franklin Roosevelt made the first Presidential flight.  Richard Nixon was the first President to visit all 50 states.   Bill Clinton set a record for the most trips abroad: 133.

The most trivial (if you could call it that) fact about the U.S. Presidents is the notorious Twenty-Year Presidential Jinx, where every president since William Henry Harrison to John F. Kennedy, elected or re-elected in a year ending in zero, at 20 year periods, has died in office, either through assassination or some natural cause.  The presidential death that most surprises people is that of James Garfield.  An assassin did shoot him in the abdomen, but Garfield initially survived the attempt, only to die at the hands of inept doctors who, at the time, knew nothing of germs or hygiene.  They poked unwashed hands into his abdomen trying to find the bullet.

The name Curse of Tippecanoe (also known as Tecumseh’s Curse, the Presidential Curse, the  Zero-Year Curse, the Twenty-Year  Curse, or the Twenty-Year Presidential Jinx) is used to describe the regular death in office of Presidents of the United States elected or re-elected in years evenly divisible by twenty, from William Henry Harrison (elected in 1840) through John F. Kennedy (1960). Ronald Reagan, elected in 1980, was shot and survived; George W. Bush (2000) survived an attempt on his life unharmed.

The curse, first widely noted in a Ripley’s Believe It or Not book published in 1931, began with the death of William Henry Harrison, who died in 1841 after having been elected in 1840. For the next 120 years, presidents elected during years ending in a zero (occurring every 20 years) ultimately died while serving in office, from Harrison to John F. Kennedy (elected 1960, died 1963).

The name “Curse of Tippecanoe” derives from the 1811 battle near modern-day Lafayette, Ind., and is named for the Tippecanoe River. The Battle of Tippecanoe was fought on Nov. 7, 1811.  As governor of the Indiana Territory, William Harrison used what were criticized as questionable tactics in the negotiation of the 1809 Treaty of Fort McHenry with Native Americans, in which they ceded large tracts of land to the U.S. government.

The treaty further angered the Shawnee leader Tecumseh, and brought government soldiers and Native Americans to the brink of war in a period known as Tecumseh’s War. Tecumseh and his brother Tenskwatawa (commonly known as “The Prophet”) organized a group of Indian tribes to resist the westward expansion of the United States.

As tensions and violence increased, Harrison marched with an army of about 1,000 men to disperse the confederacy’s headquarters at Prophetstown, near the confluence of the Tippecanoe and Wabash Rivers.

In 1811, Tecumseh’s forces, led by his brother, attacked Harrison’s army in the Battle of Tippecanoe, earning Harrison fame and the nickname “Old Tippecanoe.”  Harrison strengthened his reputation even more by defeating the British at the Battle of the Thames during the War of 1812.  In an account of the aftermath of the battle, Tenskwatawa supposedly set a curse against Harrison and future White House occupants who became president during years with the same end number as Harrison. This is the basis of the curse legend.

Tecumseh, not yet ready to oppose the United States by force, was away recruiting allies when Harrison’s army arrived. Tenskwatawa, a spiritual leader but not a military man, was in charge. He had been leading a religious movement among the northwestern tribes, calling for a return to the ancestral ways. His brother, Tecumseh, was outraged by the Treaty of Fort Wayne, and thereafter emerged as a prominent leader.

Tecumseh revived an idea advocated in previous years by the Shawnee leader Blue Jacket and the Mohawk leader Joseph Brant, which stated that Native American land was owned in common by all tribes, and land could not be sold without agreement by all the tribes. Not yet ready to confront the United States directly, Tecumseh’s primary adversaries were initially the Native American leaders who had signed the treaty.  He began by intimidating them and threatening to kill anyone who carried out the terms of the treaty. Tecumseh began to travel widely, urging warriors to abandon the accommodationist chiefs and to join the resistance at Prophetstown. Tecumseh insisted that the Fort Wayne treaty was illegitimate. In an 1810 meeting with Harrison, he demanded that Harrison nullify the treaty and warned that settlers should not attempt to settle the lands sold in the treaty. Harrison rejected his demands and insisted that the tribes could have individual relations with the United States.

Harrison camped near Prophetstown on Nov. 6 and arranged to meet with Tenskwatawa the following day.  Early the next morning, warriors from Prophetstown attacked Harrison’s army. Although the outnumbered attackers took Harrison’s army by surprise, Harrison and his men stood their ground for more than two hours. The Natives were ultimately repulsed when their ammunition ran low. After the battle, the Natives abandoned Prophetstown.  Harrison’s men burned the town and returned home.

Having accomplished his goal of destroying Prophetstown, Harrison proclaimed that he had won a decisive victory. He acquired the nickname “Tippecanoe,” which was popularized in the song “Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too” during the 1840 election, when Harrison was elected president. But some of Harrison’s contemporaries, as well as some subsequent historians, raised doubts about whether the expedition had been much of a success. Although the defeat was a setback for Tecumseh’s confederacy, the Natives soon rebuilt Prophetstown, and frontier violence actually increased after the battle.

Public opinion in the United States blamed the violence on British interference. This suspicion led to further deterioration of US relations with Great Britain and served as a catalyst of the War of 1812, which began six months later. By the time the U.S. declared war on Great Britain, Tecumseh’s confederacy was ready to launch its war against the United States and embrace an alliance with the British.

In the meeting Tecumseh warned Harrison that he would seek an alliance with the British if hostilities broke out.  Tensions between the United States and Britain had been high for several months as a result of British interference in U.S. commerce with France. As early as 1810, British agents had sought to secure an alliance with Native Americans to assist in the defense of Canada should hostilities break out, but the Natives had been reluctant to accept their offer, fearing they had little to benefit from such an arrangemen

Until recently historians have accepted the story that Tecumseh was furious with Tenskwatawa for losing the battle, and that Tecumseh had threatened to kill his brother for allowing the attack to take place. According to this story, the Prophet lost prestige after the battle and no longer served as a leader of the confederacy. In their subsequent meetings with Harrison, several Native leaders claimed that the Prophet’s influence was destroyed; in some accounts it was said he was being persecuted. Historians Alfred A. Cave and Robert Owens have argued that the Natives were probably trying to mislead Harrison in an attempt to calm the situation and that Tenskwatawa actually continued to play an important role in the confederacy.

Harrison, having accomplished his goal of dispersing the Natives of Prophetstown, proclaimed that he had won a decisive victory. But some of Harrison’s contemporaries, as well as some subsequent historians, raised doubts about whether the battle was as successful as Harrison claimed. “In none of the contemporary reports from Indian agents, traders, and public officials on the aftermath of Tippecanoe can we find confirmation of the claim that Harrison had won a decisive victory,” wrote Cave. The defeat was a setback for Tecumseh’s confederacy, but the Natives soon rebuilt Prophetstown, and frontier violence actually increased after the battle.

“If anything,” writes historian Adam Jortner, “the strike on Prophetstown made Tenskwatawa’s movement stronger.”

On December 16, 1811, the first of the New Madrid earthquakes shook the South and the Midwest.  Many Natives of the northwest took the earthquake as a sign that Tenskwatawa’s predictions of doom were coming true, leading many to support Tecumseh, including many of his former detractors. Attacks against settlers by Native Americans quickly increased in the aftermath. Numerous settlers and isolated outposts in the Indiana and Illinois Territories were targeted, leading to the deaths of many civilians. Prophetstown was partially rebuilt over the next year, though it was again destroyed by a second campaign in 1812. Tecumseh continued to play a major role in military operations on the frontier, and by the time the U.S. declared war on Great Britain in the War of 1812, Tecumseh’s confederacy was ready to launch its own war against the United States, this time with British allies. Tecumseh’s warriors made up nearly half of the British army that captured Detroit from the United States in the War of 1812. It was not until Tecumseh’s death at the 1813 Battle of the Thames in Ontario that his confederation ceased to threaten the interests of the United States.

It’s called “Tecumseh’s Curse” but it was actually his brother who cast it. He was originally given the name Lalawethika (He Makes a Loud Noise or The Noise Maker). He denounced Americans as children of the devil and mobilized the Indians in the Midwest to fight them, but his movement was defeated in the when his brother was killed, and he went to the area now known as Argentine Kansas.

Because his father died before he was born and because his mother left his family shortly after, Lalawethika grew up without parents. Lalawethika was then dependent on his siblings to teach him the Shawnee ways. Because he was not close to his older sister or older brother, he never learned how to hunt or fight successfully, skills essential to a Shawnee man. He also lost an eye in a hunting accident, and his poor looks and braggart personality did not win him many friends. As a result, Lalawethika grew up to be an outsider to his community and turned to alcohol.

His followers eventually followed him west to form a large, multi-tribal community known to the whites as Prophetstown or Tippecanoe in 1808. The site had both practical and spiritual significance. Such places at the junction of two rivers had significant spiritual significance in tribal culture. The site was also a geographic central point to the political and military alliance that was forming around Tenskwatawa’s brother Tecumseh.

When some chiefs tried to promote compromise and conciliation, Tenskwatawa, proclaiming his obedience to the Great Spirit, lashed out against these government sympathizing chiefs, depicting them as wicked traitors and minions of the Americans.

Legend has it that after the historic battle of Tippecanoe, Tecumseh released prisoners with a prophetic message for Gen. William Henry Harrison—a prophecy that has come to be known as “Tecumseh’s Curse.”

“Harrison will win next year to be the Great Chief.  He will die in his office.  I who caused the Sun to darken and Red Men to give up firewater tell you Harrison will die.  And after, every Great Chief chosen every 20 years thereafter will die.  And when each one dies, let everyone remember the death of our people.”

Although Tecumseh delivered the message, it is said that his brother, the spiritual chief of the Shawnee actually led the curse ceremony, casting 20 stones into the fire and calling the curse down upon Harrison and his successors.

The Curse of Tecumseh was something that somehow didn’t make it into the history books.  Educators probably didn’t want to engage in superstition and rightly so.  They considered it mere coincidence.

Assassins have been around since ancient times.  “Assassin” is an Arabic word.  Still, an aura of mystery surrounds the deaths of the presidents from William Henry Harrison to John F. Kennedy.  Whatever the curse was, it was broken by the great Ronald Reagan.  Although an assassin tried to kill him, the attempt was foiled and Reagan survived.  Supposedly, George W. Bush, elected in 2000, was the target of two verifiable assassination attempts but was unharmed.  These two attempts have been recorded but since he was not only not killed but unharmed the public has given them little notice:

  • February 7, 2001: While President George W.      Bush was in the White House, Robert Pickett stood outside the fence and      shot several times toward the building. The U.S. Park Police said,      according to CNN correspondent Eileen O’Connor, that they confiscated a      sophisticated handgun, and if the shooter had not been at an obstructed      angle view, he could have reached targets in the White House. Following a      stand-off of about ten minutes, a Secret Service officer shot Pickett,      wounding him. Pickett was then immediately taken to a hospital for      surgery. Pickett was found to have emotional problems and employment      grievances. Pickett had previously written letters to the President about      these grievances. A court in July 2001 sentenced Pickett to three years      imprisonment in connection with the incident.
  • May 10, 2005: While President George W. Bush      was giving a speech in the Freedom Square in Tbilisi, Georgia, Vladimir      Arutyunian threw a live Soviet-made RGD-5 hand grenade toward the podium.  The grenade was live and had its pin      pulled, but did not explode because a red tartan handkerchief was wrapped      tightly around it and delayed the firing pin.  After escaping that day, Arutyunian was      arrested in July 2005, during which he killed an Interior Ministry agent.  Convicted in January 2006, he was given a      life sentence.

During the 1980s, the Media made great sport of the fact that First Lady Nancy Reagan engaged an astrologer.  The astrologer did not dictate positions to the President, nor did Nancy; astrology only involved calculating favorable times for signing important documents or arranging meetings.  Nancy’s insistence on his following a minute schedule on that day (March 30, 1981) may have helped save his life.

Four of the eight presidents affected by the so-called “Curse” were murdered.  These were not the acts of God, but acts of deranged men.  Harrison died because he stood out in the cold of a Washington, D.C., morning and without a hat or cloak, delivered the longest inauguration speech in presidential history.

Warren G. Harding died under mysterious circumstances it is said, contracting what was claimed to be pneumonia (in June) and dying of a supposed heart attack or stroke exactly a week later.  His cabinet was under fire for corruption and Harding was said to be a philanderer.  His widow refused to allow an autopsy and she came under suspicion of murdering or having her husband murdered.  Even if the story is true, then it was Harding’s own weaknesses that brought about his demise.

FDR, it has always been assumed, contracted polio. On an early August day in 1921, the 39 year-old Roosevelt summered with his immediate family at a retreat in Canada.  Roosevelt dove (or fell, depending on the account) into the Bay of Fundy while boating.  Over the next two weeks, he experienced paralysis that began in his legs and extended to his chest, resulting in a lack of movement and bowel control.

This came at a pivotal point in his political career. Roosevelt would have been Vice President under James Cox if the Democrats won the 1920. But he’d retreated to private life after the Democratic ticket lost the election in a landslide.

Roosevelt visited a Boy Scout Camp two weeks before onset of his paralysis. Roosevelt’s presence at this gathering played a major role in his diagnosis, because the gathering of youth provided a likely origin for the polio virus. The physician who diagnosed FDR, Robert Lovett, had an expertise in the field of polio, possibly lending additional bias to the diagnosis.

Physicians and scientists have struggled with the diagnosis of polio in the decades after Roosevelt’s death, as Roosevelt’s advanced age made him an unlikely candidate for the disease. Roosevelt also experienced paralysis in both legs, while polio usually affects only one side of the body. Polio does not often affect the intestinal tract, yet the events of August 9th left FDR without control of his bowels. The future president continued to experience pain and other sensations in his legs. Confounding the diagnosis, Roosevelt exhibited a fever, a key diagnostic criteria for polio.

There are notes of clinical cases of Guillain-Barre Syndrome from this time period, with two soldiers diagnosed with the disease in 1916 using samples of spinal fluid.  Testing of spinal fluid for increased protein levels without a concomitant increase in white blood cell count continues to be a key factor in the diagnosis of Guillain-Barre Syndrome.  Whether any of FDR’s physicians knew of the then-obscure Guillain-Barre Syndrome is completely unknown.

A 2012 study published in the Journal of Medical Biography conducted a probability based on Roosevelt’s symptoms, with the outcome suggesting Roosevelt likely suffered from Guillain-Barre Syndrome instead of polio.

If a physician did diagnose Roosevelt with Guillain-Barre Syndrome, his prognosis would have strayed little. Guillain-Barre Syndrome is a viral infection of the body without a specific cure. The disease causes cells to attack other cells, leading to an eventual wasting away of the myelin sheath that surrounds nerves.

However, the misdiagnosis of polio wound up saving thousands of lives because of the presidential attention brought to the disease.  Eventually, a vaccine was developed.   FDR suffered a massive stroke in 1945 (having been warned by astrologer Jeanne Dixon at various periods that he was running out of time).

When you look at the record, you realize that many presidents not elected during the 20-year cycle had some very near-misses.  Pres. Ford was actually fired upon from 40 feet away and was saved only by the action of a bystander who grabbed the assassin’s arm causing her to miss.  The White House mailroom intercepted a letter bomb intended for Pres. Truman.  Another assassin managed to get into Blair House where Truman was staying while the White House was being renovated.  The assassin killed one Secret Service agent and wounded another, but a White House policeman managed to shoot and injured the would-be assassin.

An emotionally-disturbed man had plans to drive a bomb-laden car in JFK’s limousine.  Another would-be assassin took things one step further, planning to crash a commercial airliner into the White House to kill Pres. Nixon in 1974.  During his visit to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Manila in 1996, Pres. Clinton’s motorcade was rerouted before driving over a bridge. Service officers had intercepted a message suggesting that an attack was imminent. An intelligence team later discovered a bomb under the bridge. Subsequent U.S. investigation “revealed that [the plot] was masterminded by a Saudi terrorist living in Afghanistan named Osama bin Laden.”

The Battle of Tippecanoe and the subsequent Curse of Tecumseh, or the 20-Year Jinx, bear remarkably strong resemblances to today’s political problems, especially in the Middle East.  Not surprisingly, in a 21st Century context, the political and military strategies of the early 19th Century seem barbaric and uncivilized.  But the American military didn’t do anything that their adversaries didn’t do:  Harrison’s soldiers desecrated a Prophetstown graveyard and scalped the corpses.  A century or more later, Richard Nixon, after resigning from office would note that he didn’t do anything (create an enemies’ list, install a secret tape-recording device in his office) that his adversaries (John F. Kennedy) didn’t do.

JFK was the first to install a secret tape-recording device in his office and was well-known to have an “enemies list”.  One of the little known facts of the U.S. presidency is that, up until the 1960 election, Nixon and JFK were good friends.  They were elected to Congress the same year.  When Nixon was criticized for attacking Communism, JFK had his back.

But something broke the curse in 1980.  Was it Nancy Reagan’s astrological diligence?  Did God find Ronald Reagan a good enough man to intervene on his behalf?  So far, no 20-year curse assassinations have succeeded since then.  Nor any other kind.

America grew, in spite of Tecumseh’s spite.  If the country had not been meant to expand from one coast to the other, she would not have succeeded.  We only fought because we had to.  There were American people who wanted the freedom to move beyond the Mississippi River.  The Native Americans considered this act an “invasion”.  Naturally, they fought back, but lost, often through the treacherous breaking of treaties.  But just as often, they lost through the wanton killing of innocent pioneers who just wanted to make a new life for themselves, and Christian missionaries, which brought on the U.S. Cavalry and more violence, war, and killing.

Man, on the whole, is a grasping, avaricious creature, whether he is an Englishman or a Shawnee, an American or a Cherokee, a Dutchman or an Indonesian.  The lust for gold, for land, for power has always driven him.  Who is righteous in God’s eyes who will tear his brother apart over their dead father’s treasures?

Jesus didn’t say money was an evil; He said, “The love of money is the root of all evil.”  Money, when rightly used, is a tool of fair exchange.  When it becomes a goal unto itself, when we worship it, ruin our lives and those of others for it, and kill for it; that is when it becomes an evil – a curse.

Published in: on February 17, 2014 at 4:06 pm  Leave a Comment