Monthly Archives: March 2006

Illegal Immigrants, Resident Aliens & Undocumented Workers

Whew. I’ve been out of touch for a few weeks, but this subject of illegals in our country has really heated up. Whatever term you choose to use, at least one word is inaccurate – *illegal* negates *immigrant*, *alien* negates *resident* and the term *undocumented* is just plain wrong. (H/T to Michelle Malkin). As an American whose ancestors came to this country almost exclusively in the 17th & 18th century, I find it appalling that these many millions see nothing wrong with attempting to impose their will upon our country.

Even more appalling to our countrymen, though, should be the realization that if these many millions (most of whom are from a country south of us) would go back from whence they came, they would be a force to be reckoned with in their own country. And frankly, while some of us were blessed to be born into this wonderful place, it did not become the haven it has been for us without much struggle and sacrifice. Our ancestors fought, bled & died that their decendents might live free.

What right does ANY other country or people have to try to impose themselves upon us, abuse our laws, and take from us the sovreignty that we have inherited? Truly, they have no right – however, if we accept and allow them to continue living and working here as they have done, we deserve the sure destruction of our values that is inevitable.

Cross Posted at Left Brain Female in Just a few thoughts . . .

Homeschooling Security Mom, Political Junkie, Believe in upholding the Constitution – and subscribe to the theory that gun control is the ability to hit your target!

Blue Laws and Anti-Smoking Laws

Over at The Unrepentant Individual, I’ve long pilloried blue laws. As a Beer Advocate, the fact that I’ve moved to a state where it is illegal to purchase alcohol on Sundays irks me. Granted, I think far enough ahead that it doesn’t worry me, but the idea that the state determines what days alcohol should and should not be sold seems like an affront to freedom.

At the same time, I’ve long asked here about how much I disagree with anti-smoking laws. Granted, I’m not a smoker (although I used to be), but again, I feel like it is an affront to freedom to decree that smoking should not be allowed upon private property.

I’ve asked with both situations that we choose freedom over regulation. If you’re a liquor store owner and you choose to close on Sundays, in observance of your religion? You’re free to make that choice. If you’re a religious person who thinks it is wrong to purchase alcohol on Sundays, don’t do it. Likewise, if you’re a restaurant owner and you want to serve patrons who don’t want to be around smoke, choose to be a non-smoking restaurant. If you dislike smoke to the extent that you don’t want to be near it in a restaurant, go to non-smoking restaurants. It is freedom. It may not always end up with the “desired” results, but in my mind, it’s the best policy.

At the same time, I am faced with a difficult argument from the blue law and anti-smoking advocates. When I suggest that a business choose to go no-smoking, or that a business choose not to sell alcohol on Sunday (or on the other end, choose as a pharmacist whether or not to dispense birth control), the argument is that a business can’t survive if it makes that choice.

One popular establishment, though, is bucking that trend, and showing that choosing to restrict your own business doesn’t necessarily mean your demise. The policy of Chick-Fil-A is to be voluntarily closed on Sunday. If the anti-freedom forces were correct, Chick-Fil-A would be going out of business. Instead, it recently expanded into California, keeping it’s closed-on-Sunday policies, and has been growing all the same. Rather than failing, Christians who agree with that policy tend to give Chick-Fil-A more business because they feel like it’s a “moral” company. And Chick-Fil-A is no startup. They’ve been around and growing for sixty years.

How is it that a company who chooses to voluntarily restrict their operations in this manner succeed? Because the market allows a wide range of diversity. Some people prefer Chick-Fil-A (or a California operation, In&Out Burger) for their Christian roots. Others like these restaurants for the food, and care little about the religious aspect of the business. Either way, Chick-Fil-A is simple proof that businesses choosing to buck the trend can survive.

Georgia’s anti-smoking legislation went into effect in July 2005. Before the ever happened, I visited quite a few restaurants in the Atlanta area who were non-smoking. Some of them had enclosed bar areas where smoking was allowed, several were completely non-smoking. They were succeeding and following the “desired” results with no help from government decree to shackle their competitors.

I’ve said before that legislators only do what is safe. Smokers have become so ostracized that it is now politically safe for legislators to enforce discrimination against them. But what most people don’t understand is that there is an underlying trend against smoking in our entire culture, and the politicians are just catching onto the coattails of that trend. At the same time, the politicians are claiming credit for that trend. Smokers are losing their havens naturally, but when a politician can claim credit for enforcing that natural phenomenon, it makes voters feel like those politicians are needed. Anti-smoking sentiment is growing, and anti-blue-law sentiment is growing. When those trends grow large enough, politicians jump on. But we shouldn’t allow them to take credit for destroying freedom by pandering to the majority.

The experience of California years ago may be necessary, as it showed the world that restaurants and bars could survive smoke-free. But instead of learning the lesson, other states mimicked the legislative option. Likewise, the argument against ending blue laws is that liquor stores who voluntarily choose not to sell on Sunday will be put into difficult business positions. But the experience of Chick-Fil-A shows that a business in a competitive market can choose to close on Sunday and survive. My local liquor store has a good enough beer and wine selection that I’d rather shop there on any day but Sunday than shop for beer at the supermarket. If a liquor store chooses to close on Sunday, they might have to raise their game in other areas, but that’s not a bad thing.

Those who think we need to restrict smoking don’t trust the market to supply a product that they feel they’re entitled to. But anti-smoking laws wouldn’t be passed if there wasn’t a demand, and the freedom of a market will satisfy a demand. The blue law folks are a tougher nut, because they’re simply trying to legislate their own morality, not their own preferences. They think it’s immoral that someone should buy liquor or beer on Sundays, and think it’s their duty to stop us. But their power is waning in this country, it’s only a matter of time. Both groups are repugnant to me, but it’s the former that worry me the most.

I thank the FEC for FREEING us!

FEC Frees All Web Political Communication Except Paid Ads

Eric chastised me about the title to this post, where I improperly used language and claimed the government had rights. As such, I need to point out this gaffe before even addressing the meat of this article. The FEC did not give us Freedom. They only lifted their (immediate) threat of immorally infringing upon our freedom.

Yesterday’s unanimous Federal Election Commission (FEC) ruling on Internet political communication places paid online advertising in the category of “public communication,” subject to campaign finance laws. Bloggers, Web pundits, and all other Internet communicators, however, get carte blanche.

Prominent bloggers are hailing the FEC decision, which affords them the same exemption from campaign finance restrictions that is afforded offline media like TV, radio and newspapers. Indeed, even when individuals who run Web sites accept payment from a federal candidate, political party committee or other political committee, no disclaimer is required. Also, according to the FEC document, public communication doesn’t include republished campaign material that is placed on an individual’s Web site, blog or e-mail, so it’s not considered “coordinated communication.”

So, they’ve accepted as legitimate the idea that they decide who gets to speak and who doesn’t, and how. While I am somehow now a member of a privileged class (“the media”), I still do not accept the government’s power to decide who can and cannot speak. If they can decide today that bloggers are part of the media, they can just as easily decide the opposite in the future.

I refuse to acknowledge their power to infringe upon my right to speak. That is my position, regardless of which way the FEC decides. And should they have decided otherwise, I would have been forced to disobey.

The game is not over. I do not believe it is right to leave these decisions in the hands of unelected bureaucrats at the FEC. H.R. 1606 is still active. After the FEC ruling, it could still be voted upon, or it might simply go away. It is time to make sure it does not go away. I am sending this letter (by fax) to my Congressman, Tom Price. I suggest all of you do the same, as we need to send a message that this is illegitimate in the first place.

Dear Rep. Price,

As you may be aware, the FEC recently ruled that blogs and other online communication, with the exception of paid political advertisements, will not be regulated as a part of the Bipartisan Campain Reform Act (BCRA). At the same time, Rep. Hensarling had introduced the Online Freedom of Speech Act (HR 1606) to ensure that online communication would be wholly exempted from the BCRA.

Understandably, there was a lot of political pressure to pass HR 1606 before the FEC released its ruling on Monday. As a result of that ruling, it is likely that much of this pressure will subside. Regardless, it is my belief that HR 1606 should still be voted upon in the House and passed. The FEC has determined that it is the arbiter of what should and should not be regulated as political speech under the BCRA. While they may have decided today to bow to politics and not regulate online communication, there is no guarantee that they won’t change their minds next month or next year, when they are no longer in the spotlight of public opinion.

The way to ensure that the FEC does not change its ruling is for the Congress to make sure that they don’t have the authority. It is not the place of unelected federal bureaucrats to determine whether or not individuals have the right to freedom of speech. I ask that you do what you can to ensure that HR 1606 does see a vote in the near future, and that you vote in favor of the measure.

Thank you for your support.

Carnival Of Liberty XXXVIII

The 38th edition of the Carnival of Liberty is up at Searchlight Crusade. As usual, Dan has done an excellent job of hosting this week, so be sure to check it out.

I will be hosting the Carnival of Liberty at Below The Beltway next week, so be sure to get those submissions in. If you’d like to host a Carnival yourself, the latest schedule and list of open dates can be found here.

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Welcome To The 21st Century Kansas

This story in the Kansas City Star should give everyone cause for celebration:

After years of failed efforts, vetoes and political wrangling, Kansas will join most of the nation in allowing concealed weapons permits, starting this year.

The Kansas House voted Thursday to override Gov. Kathleen Sebelius’ veto of a concealed weapons bill, following a similar vote in the Senate on Wednesday. The action makes law a plan to allow citizens who pass a background check and training course to carry concealed weapons. The first applications can be filed July 1.

The House vote was 91-33, seven more votes than necessary to reject Sebelius’ veto.

“The people of Kansas have waited a long time for this,” said Sen. Phil Journey, a Haysville Republican who has worked for the bill for more than a decade, first as a citizen and then as a lawmaker.

We welcome Kansas to the twenty-first century by becoming the forty-seventh state to allow the carrying of concealed weapons in some version. Now if we can get the states of Nebraska, Illinois, and Wisconsin to recognize that right as well. Once we drag those three states into the twenty-first century, we need to start working on the ten states (California, Iowa, Delaware, Rhode Island, Massachussetts, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, and Hawaii) that restrict the right to carry in some form. Finally, we need to work on every state except Vermont that requires some sort of government permission to carry a concealed weapon. Why should I have to ask the government’s permission to exercise one of my most fundamental rights, which is the right to defend myself?

I’m one of the original co-founders of The Liberty Papers all the way back in 2005. Since then, I wound up doing this blogging thing professionally. Now I’m running the site now. You can find my other work at The and Rare. You can also find me over at the R Street Institute.
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