Saturday, September 30, 2006

Military Commissions Act, HR 6054

I had a reader ask me to discuss the controversial HR 6054, specifically the portion of it that denies Habeas Corpus rights to US citizens who are declared an "Enemy Combatant" by our current Government.

I am not a lawyer and I did not take the time to read the entire document.

That being said, Habeas Corpus is an important right that should include ALL AMERICAN CITIZENS. Habeas Corpus is the right for someone held by the government to have access to the court system of this country.

Habeas Corpus has been denied to those US Citizens who have been declared an "Enemy Combatant" by President Bush. This is WRONG.

The most famous case is Jose Padilla. Jose Padilla is a United States citizen who was arrested on May 9th, 2002 in Chicago. He was accused of being involved with a plot to explode a "dirty bomb" in Chicago and several other crimes.

He was declared an "Enemy Combatant" by President Bush and transferred to military custody. He was not allowed to talk to a lawyer until early 2004. He was not charged with a crime until November 22nd, 2005. The crimes he was charged with are much more minor then those he was accused of in 2002... He was kept in solitary confinement and not even charged with a crime for 2 and a half years. This is OUTRAGEOUS, UNCONSTITUTIONAL, and WRONG.

In December of 2005 he was transferred into the civilian court system.

I think that the government cannot prove any of the original charges they arrested him for, so they are charging him with different and less significant crimes in an attempt to make themselves look better.

President Bush did an end run on the Constitution by declaring Jose Padilla an "Enemy Combatant." That must stop.

Unfortunately for us, Congress and the Senate just made this perfectly legal. This was done mostly along party lines; however a few (very few) Reps and Dems (More Dems crossed over then Reps) crossed over. The Republicans voted to expand the powers of the government and to further erode both The Constitution and our civil liberties and The Democrats voted on the right side of this issue...

The telling paragraph of this bill for me is:

§ 948a.
Definitions 2
In this chapter: 3(1) UNLAWFUL ENEMY COMBATANT.—(A) The term ‘unlawful enemy combatant’ means—"(ii) a person who, before, on, or after the date of the enactment of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, has been determined to be an unlawful enemy combatant by a Combatant Status Review Tribunal or another competent tribunal established under the authority of the President or the Secretary of Defense."

Here is what that paragraph means to me, a military tribunal has the power to declare ANYONE THEY WANT an "enemy combatant."

I know there are a lot of Americans who think to themselves, it can never happen to me.

I imagine there were several million Jews who thought the exact same thing in Europe in 1940. They found out they were wrong. I love my country; but, I do not have blind trust in my government.

What makes me most angry about this is the pretenses the Republicans are using and the large number of Americans that believe them:

1. I commonly hear from idiots like Sean Hannity that "Islamic terrorists are as large of a threat to this country as the threats we faced in World War Two."

This is one of the dumbest and silfallacieslacies that I have ever heard. Over 62 million people were killed in World War Two. Over 418,000 Americans were killed in this war. The Axis was a strong threat to our nation and we mobilized and helped defeat them. Only a complete idiot could compare terrorism to World War Two. Sean Hannity does it every day.

2. I commonly hear "Bushbots" talk about Bush being a war time President and how we must support him.

This is the fault of both Democrats and Republicans. I still find it habelieveeleive that our Congress and Senate gave Bush a blank check whateverhaever he wanted in "The War on Terror." It is absurd. The Democrats MUST share the blame, they voted for it almost unanimously.

I have ranted long enough...

Mike Sylvester

Representative Foley

I am extremely disgusted by the actions of Representative Foley (R) from Florida. I hope that he is prosecuted fully and that if he is guilty, which I have little doubt that he is, he spends a lot of time in prison. I hope he shares a cell with a friendly and lonely inmate...

I am sure there is a great deal of news about this all over the internet.

It is just appalling to me how far the Republicans have fallen in the last couple of years. The Republicans are currently having as many scandals as The Democrats did when they were in power or may be having even more. The Democrats are still having scandals as well; just fewer then the Republicans since the Republicans are in power. This goes to prove one thing:

Power corrupts.

Anyone who thinks the Republicans are more moral then their opponents needs to think again. There are a lot of "dirtbags" in this world. Many are Democrats and many are Republicans. There are Libertarian "dirtbags" as well...

If you want to read ABC news and their take on Foley here is a link

<http://blogs.abcnews.com/theblotter/2006/09/exclusive_the_s.html>

If you go and read the text of the instant messages be warned, they are somewhat disgusting...

Representative Foley has abused his power and I think there is a very warm place in Hell reserved for him if he is guilty.

Since he resigned his post and is already apologizing to his family; I have a feeling he is guilty...

Mike Sylvester

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Guard the borders Blogburst Sep 26th, 2006

This Blogburst is also available as a Podcast.

by Toni at Bear Creek Ledger

All of these stories were found in the last couple days posted to Lucianne.


'Border Baby' boom strains S. Texas - There's a picture with the story of an illegal alien who's given birth to her fourth child on American soil at American taxpayer expense who thinks it's owed to her!


Of course the real story is how 'anchor babies' are breaking the backs of South Texas hospitals.




Doctors and health officials say they are overwhelmed by both the new arrivals and those immigrant mothers who already are in the state. Even Houston's feeling the pinch. An estimated 70 percent to 80 percent of the 10,587 births at Ben Taub General Hospital and Lyndon B. Johnson General Hospital last year were to undocumented immigrants, administrators say.


Also feeling the strain is Starr County, an already poor South Texas county that has the region's only taxpayer-supported hospital district.


Immigrants "want a U.S.-born baby" and know that emergency room staffers don't collect any money up front, said Dr. Mario Rodriguez, an obstetrician in Starr County.


"The word is out: Come to Starr County and get delivered for free. Why pay $1,000 in Mexico when you can get it for free?" Rodriguez said.



This story is more than disconcerting. Gives me a lot of confidence in ICE/DHS! The corruption is disheartening, read the list and weep.


Corruption Involving Immigration Workers:



In the past 12 months, dozens of U.S. immigration employees have been accused of corruption-related charges. Some cases, drawn from a review of court records and government announcements, and listed by agency:


U.S. CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION


- David Duque Jr., a Border Patrol agent since the mid-1990s, faces up to 15 years in prison at his November sentencing after pleading guilty to bribery and the unlawful transfer of documents. While being recorded by investigators, Duque sold some 70 identification documents to a source cooperating with law officers - including passports, birth certificates, green cards and Social Security cards. He also took a $5,000 bribe to allow cocaine through a highway checkpoint in Falfurrias, Texas.


snip......


U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT


- Santiago Efrain Valle, an agent with Immigration and Customs Enforcement in El Paso, Texas, was charged in March with trying to extort $20,000 from an immigration detainee at the El Paso Service Processing Center. Federal agents arrested Valle after he allegedly accepted $20,000 from undercover officers. According to court documents, Valle agreed to accept the money in exchange for dismissing pending immigration charges against the detainee and also changing his risk classification. If convicted, he faces up to three years in prison.


snip.....


U.S. CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES


- Robert Schofield, a USCIS district office supervisor in Fairfax, Va., was arrested in June, accused of illegally granting residency and issuing naturalization certificates to more than 100 unqualified immigrants. Qiming Ye, a Chinese citizen, also was charged for allegedly brokering deals between Schofield and Asian immigrants. One unqualified immigrant was granted residency status after meeting Schofield's wife in the Philippines, and then living with Schofield and baby-sitting his stepchild for a year, a court affidavit alleges. When stopped by Customs officials at an airport, the immigrant provided Schofield's name, cell phone and home telephone number from memory, the affidavit said. Passports seized from Ye's residence included green card stamps bearing Schofield's ID, and phone traces showed dozens of calls between Ye and Schofield's home number and his Department of Homeland Security cell phone, the court documents allege. "Numerous" allegations of bribery involving Schofield have been reported in the last decade, an investigator said in an affidavit. A trial date is pending.



I've only posted one of each area from the story. There's many more in the story and the dollars involved can be staggering.


Then we have more great news from ICE/DHS. Told of immigrant arrests, Feds often failing to act:



The lack of response by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents has fostered confusion among municipal officials already resentful of being designated as surrogate federal agents in the national policy debate over illegal immigrants.


This comes at a time when a suspected illegal immigrant who was once in Denver police custody stands accused of dragging a woman to death behind his vehicle. There are conflicting reports as to whether Denver police notified immigration officials after he was arrested in April.


Law-enforcement agencies in Colorado placed 9,429 inquiries about suspected illegal immigrants to ICE in the 2005 accounting year. ICE requested detainment for 330 of those suspects, according to agency statistics.


This year, ICE has received 13,063 inquiries from Colorado authorities, placing holds on 284.



Well that really confirms the story from TBone's buddy!


Now this is a story which gives me a modicum of hope.


GA Lawmaker may apologize to Latino's



A Georgia Republican says he'll apologize to a national Latino advocacy group he accused of supporting racism and illegal immigration if the organization agrees to a list of conditions.


In a press release this week, Rep. Charlie Norwood called the National Council of La Raza a "radical," "anti-American" organization that "supports racist groups calling for the secession of the western United States as a Hispanic-only homeland."


In offering a conditional apology, Norwood asked NCLR to sever all ties with a leftist student group and its "racist doctrines," to repudiate all claims that any American territory belongs to Mexico, and to seek outside supervision to ensure that NCLR-sponsored programs do not discriminate.



La Raza uses all the typical name calling of the left when they are in the wrong and have nothing left to use in their defense except for race-baiting.


Cry me a river on this story. I know, that's harsh but I'm sick and tired of the woe is me illegal alien injured illegally crossing the border into the US; then the American taxpayer has to pick up the tab for their medical expenses.


Woman finds scaling fence is a costly painful gamble:



A U.S. Border Patrol agent crouches in front of her. He slowly wraps her severed ring finger in a shirt. He places it in a bag of ice.



"I knew I couldn't do it, I knew I couldn't do it," she says quietly in Spanish to the man sitting next to her, Victor Perez.



Rosario, 25, and Perez, 24, sit with their heads down on a frontage road next to a 10-foot corrugated steel fence that marks the border south of Campo, Calif., about 50 miles east of San Diego.



About one hour earlier, the two climbed over the landing-mat fence as part of a group of Mexican illegal entrants.



The men and women helped each person climb over. Rosario caught her hand on the razor-sharp anvil point on top of the fence.



When she fell to the ground on the U.S. side, pain shot up her arm. Her hand was bleeding. The top third of her ring finger lay on the ground.



Just what do these illegal aliens think the fence is there for? It's To. Keep. Them. Out!


My BS meter sprang wildly out of control when I read this piece of scare mongering:



ID Program Will Cost States $11 Billion, Report says:





The cost to consumers for helping to secure America became clearer yesterday as a coalition of state groups tallied the bill for implementing the Real ID Act and federal officials divulged the price that some of its workers must pay for new smart cards.


In a report released by the National Governors Association, the National Conference of State Legislatures and the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, state motor vehicle officials estimated it would cost more than $11 billion over five years to implement the technology required by the Real ID Act.


Under the law, states must start to re-enroll about 250 million holders of U.S. driver's licenses after May 2008. The states must train workers to verify copies of original birth certificates, Social Security cards, marriage certificates and various identification documents.



There's any number of ID's which could be incorporated into this program including a Voter ID! But the Democrats don't want any of this to happen since it would mean losing potential voters from the likes of illegal aliens, dead people, people voting twice......



House Judiciary Committee Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis.), who introduced the Real ID Act, strongly disagreed with a similar cost estimate presented by the groups last year, saying it was bloated. The chairman cited a Congressional Budget Office report that estimated the cost of implementation at $100 million between 2005 and 2010.



The dollars saved on entitlement and social services and law enforcement to illegal aliens will more than cover the cost of this ID program.


Then we have the jailbreak from a detention center. This story was actually a bit confusing. There were 6 federal fugitives from this escape (which begs the question why these fugitives were only being held in a detention center) of which 5 of the six were held for repeated immigration violations (read: illegal aliens who have been deported multiple times). The sixth was a former McAllen cop gone bad, now a drug smuggler.


Outside help seen in Valley jailbreak:



The breakout's suspected leader is a former McAllen cop facing drug charges. Five Mexican nationals held on repeated immigration violations escaped with him.


snip....


He said investigators believe Francisco Javier Meza Rojas, 41, orchestrated the breakout.


"The only reason why we think he was the ringleader was because he had the money," Magallan said. "He could have arranged everything. He was (in the narcotics business) and a former cop."


A federal indictment from April alleges Meza, also known as "El Ocho" and "Chacho," led a drug trafficking organization that included his three brothers. U.S. District Judge Randy Crane on Thursday revoked the bond of one of them, Jesus Meza, a former Edinburg police officer.


The three now are being held in jails in McAllen, Raymondville and Karnes County, Magallan said.


The Mezas, along with other defendants, are scheduled to be tried in October on drug charges that include trafficking cocaine and marijuana from a rural area near Mission.



Yeah, that makes me feel real secure. Nice to know how prosperous the Mexican drug trade is in the US.


_____________________________________________

This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It was started by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we're going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the war on terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration facing our country, join our blogburst! Just send an email with your blog name and url to admin at guardtheborders dot com.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Another Fort Wayne LIbertarian starts a blog!

There are now FOUR Fort Wayne Libertarians who run their own blogs.

One thing that is different about Libertarian blogs then most other blogs; we offer new ideas rather then spending 100% of our time bashing one particular Political Party...

Check it out:
<http://jonsasylum.blogspot.com/>

Mike Sylvester

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Oak View Little Shots

The first night of the Oak View Little Shots league was tonight. It was a blast.

Little Shots is a basketball league for kids K-2. It was a lot of fun.

We have eight teams; half play on Tue and half on Wed.

Kayla plays her first game tomorrow night... I am looking forward to it.

Mike Sylvester

Monday, September 25, 2006

CPA Exam

1 Section passed and three to go.

I got my score for the BEC section I took last month. I got an 84. A 75 or higher is a passing score.

My good friend Brent took the FAR section last month and got his grade today as well. He got an 88.

We both over-studied...

In about a week and a half I will be taking the FAR section... I will get less then an 88 for sure... Maybe a lot less...

Mike Sylvester

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Allen COunty smoking ordinance is HORRIBLY written

Allen County Smoking Ordinance is poorly written

The proposed Allen County smoking ordinance is poorly written and needs to be clarified before it is voted on.

The ordinance exempts “Private residences, except when used as a licensed child care, adult care, or Health Care Facility.”

What does this mean? I spoke to several Allen County officials about the definition of a “Private residence.” None of the officials I spoke to could define a “private residence.” Allen County Code does not define a “private residence.” The proposed smoking ordinance does not define a “private residence.”

Will the proposed smoking ban affect a home owner who has a home office and runs a small business out of their home? Will the proposed smoking ban affect a home owner who has had their residence rezoned into a commercial property? Will it affect a home owner who has a “use variance” in place so they can conduct commercial business on their property? I once again talked to several individuals that work for Allen County and not one of them could answer any of these questions either. This must be clarified in the proposed ordinance.

The posting requirements are the worst section of this document. Per section 10-8-4 “any establishment exempted shall post the following sign at the main entrance: “Warning: This is a smoking establishment.”

My wife and I are accountants and each have an office in our home. If our house qualifies as a “private residence” we would be exempt from the proposed smoking ordinance. My wife and I choose NOT to allow people to smoke in our house.

Per section 10-8-4 we will be required to post a sign on our front door, even though we do not allow smoking in our house, that says “Warning: This is a smoking establishment.”

Section 10-8-4 needs to be re-written. I do not allow smoking in my home; it is absurd that this ordinance will require me to post a sign at the main entrance of my house stating that it is a smoking establishment. As written this ordinance would require every person who has a business in their home to post a sign at their front entrance stating that it is smoking establishment, whether you allow smoking or not.

This ordinance will affect hundreds of thousands of people if it is enacted. I hope the County Commissioners take the time to write it properly and then let the public comment on it after the errors are fixed.

Mike Sylvester
Chairman of the Libertarian Party of Allen County

Allen County Smoking Ban

I think EVERYONE should read the proposed Allen County Smoking Ban:

http://www.co.allen.in.us/images/stories/commissioners/draft%20smoking%20ordinance.pdf

Scott Greider correctly points out that there is an exemption for "Private residences" in the ordinance; but, what does this exception really mean?

I spent an hour this morning trying to find out what it means. I talked to County officials in Zoning, Planning, and the Commissioners office. Interestingly enough, they do not know what it means either. We could not find the term "Private Residence" in the Allen County Code and it is not defined in the ordinance. After my calls they are supposed to "look into it."

This is where it gets tricky, how will they define "Private Residence?"

In my opinion some home owners who run small business will be allowed to smoke in their homes and others will not...

If you have a business in your home and you have had to get your home REZONED then guess what, your home is NOT a private residence. There are quite a few home owners and small business owners that this will apply to! As soon as you have your house REZONED it is not a "private residence" anymore in my opinion...

You can also get a "Use variance." I am not sure how this would be handled...

For example: One of my neighbors put a SMALL photo developing shop in his basement. He had to get his home rezoned to allow him to run that business in his home. This was a time consuming process that cost him some money. His house was rezoned commercial a few years ago. If the Allen County Smoking Ban as proposed is passed, I do not think he can smoke in his house at all because I do not think his house will be considered a "Private Residence." In fact, after re-reading the ordinance, he will not be able to allowed to smoke ANYWHERE in his house since his entire house was rezoned commercial!

There are some other things I noticed:

1. Lets say you have a business in your home and your home has NOT been rezoned. By the ordinance as I read it people can smoke in your home office due to the exception that Scott pointed out; however, per 10-8-4 you will be required to post on the main entrance of your house the following sign "Warning: This is a smoking establishment" if you plan on smoking or allowing smoking in your own house.

This is 100% absurd. You are telling thousands of local home owners that they have to post a sign on the front door of their house. Let me give you a couple of examples:

Lets say you are a Realtor. There are HUNDREDS of Realtors in Allen County. Lets say you have a home office. You will have to post a sign on the front door of your house saying that "Warning: This is a smoking establishment" if you allow smoking in your own house...

Wow.

Amazing...

Who is still for this Smoking Ordinance as written?

Mike Sylvester

Good LPAC meeting last night.

We had our September meeting last night. Mike Kole attended the meeting and distributed yard signs for his Secretary of State Campaign.

I sure hope all the readers of this blog support Mike Kole in his quest for Secretary of State!

We need a Secretary of State who will strive to make elections fair and unbiased...

You can learn more at:

http://www.mikekole.com/

Mike Sylvester

Friday, September 15, 2006

Proposed Allen County Smoking Ban is insane

My wife and I run a business out of our home. We rarely have clients over to our house. We have two offices in our house that we use for our business.

Per the proposed smoking ban we would be restricted from allowing smoking in at least the two offices IN OUR HOUSE.

Give me a break.

I do not smoke. I do not let ANYONE smoke in my house. That is a choice my wife and I have made.

IT IS NOT the government's job to regulate smoking in MY house.

This is going too far...

Mike Sylvester

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Please sign Blue NACS petition

What does the petition drive really boil down to in NACS?

If you sign the Yellow petition you are agreeing to put another band-aid on Carroll High School and you are agreeing to a 65 million dollar project that will increase you property taxes.

If you sign the Blue petition you are stopping the above project and your property taxes will not increase this next year due to NACS.

Please sign the Blue petition.

If you want to sign the Blue petition or carry a Blue petition please call me at 338-0833.

Mike Sylvester

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Nothing to fear but Government itself

This is a funny post. I have not taken the time to check the numbers...

<http://hammeroftruth.com/2006/09/11/nothing-to-fear-but-government-itself/>

Mike Sylvester

Big government Republicans strike AGAIN

Did you know that The Republicans inserted a little known provision in the 2003 Medicare prescription drug give away that they passed in 2003 with Democratic support that raises Medicare premiums for those who make more money?

This sounds like something The Democrats would do; however, it was the Republicans.

Please read this article and come on back and let me know what you think.

<http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/11/Washington/11medicare.html?
_r=2&oref=slogin&ref=us&pagewanted=print&oref=slogin>

Especially consider the method the government is going to use to assess this increased fee. They are going to create another layer of government that will look at old tax returns and then assess increased fees. This is going to by interesting to watch...

Does anyone still think The Republican Party is for smaller Government and smaller taxes?

Mike Sylvester

Guard the borders Blogburst Sep 12th, 2006

by Heidi at Euphoric Reality

This week’s Blogburst is available as a Podcast.

In the days and weeks leading up to the fifth anniversary of 9/11, I have been musing how the overall impact of that single days' terrorism has affected our nation. Some people have felt their initial shock and horror fade away to something sadly benign - a quiet relief that it hasn't happened again, and a determination to "do their part" going on with their lives. After all, if they didn't, then the terrorists would've "won" that day, they aver. Others like me, felt that same shock and horror harden into a stone cold fury and an implacable resolve to fight this burgeoning evil that hides behind the facade of religion.

The question on everyone's minds is, "Are we safer today than we were on 9/10?" With our wide-open borders, and our government's refusal to crack down on illegal aliens, my answer is a resounding "NO!" There is no way any politician or civic leader can claim that we have gotten tougher on evicting people who should NOT be here. In fact, they are competing over how many millions of illegals we can let in each year without identification, without background checks, and without any knowledge of where they are or what they are doing. In fact, our "leaders" are racing to see who can squash any meager attempt at controlling our borders or enforcing our immigration laws the fastest! It has become a feather in their cap to deny to rule of law and leave our borders defenseless.

There is no doubt that illegal immigration is the gaping hole in our tenuous national security. President Bush narrowly defines the issue of our national security as a matter of success in Iraq. The House - heeding the overwhelming demands of the constituents who elected them to office - has refused to grant amnesty to over 20 million illegal aliens inside our borders. And with the Senate's obstinate refusal to physically safeguard our border, Congress has reached an impasse. What a solution! When the swiftest and most decisive action is called for...they do nothing.

Third World County says it best:

...every single one of the nineteen 9/11 hijackers was in this country illegally at the time of their terrorist act.

Every. Single. One.

So, for all those political poltroons pimping amnesty (yes, you too, Mr. Bush), remember this: failure to enforce immigration laws, crack down on forged and hijacked SS documents, etc., cost American lives on 9/11.


__________________________________________

This has been a production of the Guard the Borders Blogburst. It is syndicated by Euphoric Reality, and serves to keep immigration issues in the forefront of our minds as we're going about our daily lives and continuing to fight the war on terror. If you are concerned with the trend of illegal immigration in our country, join the Blogburst! Send an email with your blog name and url to euphoricrealitynet at gmail dot com.

Sign the Blue petition!

If you want to sign a blue petition in support of building a new High School please feel free to give me a phone call at 338-0833. I will bring the petition to you so you can sign it!

There are three public meetings at The Dupont branch of the Allen County Library scheduled:

Saturday September 16th from 12:00-6:00 PM
Saturday September 23rd from 10:00-6:00 PM
Wednesday October 4th from 1:00-9:00 PM

Mike Sylvester

Monday, September 11, 2006

9/11 anniversary

I think the most important question is, "Are we safer?"

I think we are NOT safer.

I think we have wasted a lot of money, eroded civil liberties, and accomplished only a few things.

I think that to be safer against terrorism we would have to accomplish several things:

1. Secure our borders and prevent terrorists from entering our country.
We have completely failed to do this. I would grade this as an F.

2. Go overseas and actually destroy terrorist organizations.
We have destroyed some of the terrorists that were in Afghanistan. We have toppled the Iraqi government; however, we have created a large mess in Iraq. I would grade this a C.

3. Cut off terrorist funding.
I think we have done a good job of this. I would give this an A.

4. Improve airline and airport security.
I think we have spent a lot of money; however I do not think we have greatly improved airport security. I would grade this a C.

5. Protect likely targets in The United States.
We have spent a lot of money and accomplished little. I would grade this a D.

6. Form a large inter-national coalition.
We have angered much of the world. I would grade this an F.

Overall I give our government a D on this topic.

HOW ABOUT YOU?

Mike Sylvester

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Depressing day

I cleaned out my mother's house today. I moved her stuff into my garage with my friends...

Mom watched my kids. She is on a waiting list for a retirement community.

She will most likely live with us through the end of the year.

It was a tough day.

Mike Sylvester

Friday, September 08, 2006

Speech at Concordia High School

I spent an hour talking to a Government class at Concordia High School today. I talked to them about The Libertarian Party.

I was asked to speak by their Government teacher Tim Reinking.

Concordia is a private Lutheran High School in Fort Wayne.

I had a great time and I hope to talk to more High School students in the future.

Mike Sylvester

Thursday, September 07, 2006

NACS Remonstrance begins today

There will b e two kick off parties for those people who do not want to expand Carroll into a mega-sized High School:

Where: Church of the Covenant 10001 Coldwater Rd.

When: Thursday September 7th from 6:00-7:00 PM
Saturday September 9th form 9:00-10:00 AM

I hope to see you there!

Mike Sylvester

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Newt Gingrich gets it about HALF right

Newt Gingrich has written an 11 point stand telling Republicans how he thinks they can retain their majority this Fall.

The entire article can be seen at:
<http://www.humanevents.com/winningthefuture.php?id=16863>

I am copying the 11 points below and telling you ny take on these points:

Make English the Official Language of Government. The House should pass a bill making English the official language of government, abolishing multilingual ballots and reaffirming that new citizens should be required to pass a test on American history in English. The Rasmussen poll reported that support for English as the official language was 85%. The Zogby poll had it at 84%. Why do Republican leaders find it so hard to side with more than four out of every five Americans? How many liberal Democrats who currently assume they are unbeatable would suddenly have a hard time explaining a series of votes against English to their constituents? Remember, at 85%, there are no anti-English congressional districts no matter what the elite media says.
I agree on this one... English SHOULD be our official language for Government.

Control the Borders. The House should pass a narrowly focused bill to ensure that the United States can control the border. The current Senate bill is a disaster. It is impossible to pass a "comprehensive" immigration bill in the next two months. The American people overwhelmingly want the borders controlled and every act of terrorism reminds us that having the borders uncontrolled makes us more vulnerable to attack. The House should immediately pass a border-control bill and conservative Republican senators should move every day to bring it up in the Senate. Let Democrats and elitist Republicans block controlling the border and make that a referendum test for Election Day.
I agree with this one as well. We MUST secure our border and enforce our laws.

Keep God in the Pledge. Congress should take two steps to preserve the right to say "one nation under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, a right which is supported by 91% of all Americans. The American people feel deeply that our Declaration of Independence is correct in saying that each of us is endowed by our Creator with inalienable rights. Beginning with the Supreme Court's 1963 decision outlawing school prayer, the courts have waged a 43-year assault on the core values of American liberty. It is time to return to a balanced Constitutional system. There is no Constitutional case for five lawyers' on the court being a floating majority for a permanent Constitutional Convention. The American people would rally to the elected branches' taking steps to rebalance the Constitution. First, the House should pass a bill suspending the recent federal district court decision in California outlawing the words "one nation under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance. Second, the House should pass a law blocking the Supreme Court from reviewing the constitutionality of the Pledge of Allegiance (a power of the Congress expressly granted in the Constitution).
I am not sure about this one... I am murky on this topic.

Require a Voter ID Card. The American people overwhelmingly support (85% in one poll) having a voter id card so we can be sure only legal citizens are voting. Passing a bill to require this in all federal elections would be a big step toward more honest elections.
In some ways I agree with this; however, elections should be controlled at the State level so I have to come down against this. I am in favor of States tightening their rules and ensuring that only valid voters are allowed to cast votes.

Repeal the Death Tax, for Good. The American people have consistently supported the total repeal of the death tax and the House should simply pass it once a week and attach it to various Senate bills to force the Senate to deal with it again and again. Let liberals explain why they oppose something that more than 70% of the country favors.
I agree with this one with one qualifier. We have to CUT SPENDING to pay for this tax cut. We CANNOT afford to keep deficit spending.

Restore Property Rights. The American people are deeply opposed to local politicians' being able to seize a citizen's home or business. The Supreme Court's Kelo decision on eminent domain is one of the most unpopular in recent years and is also one of the most dangerous. Anyone who knows the history of local government corruption in America knows it will not be long before some corrupt developers engage some corrupt politicians and this power is exploited at the cost of most Americans. Members of the Black Caucus have been among the most vocal in pointing out that it is poor people who will be the most victimized so rich developers and greedy politicians can make the money off their homes and businesses. The House should pass a powerful bill returning the constitutional law to the pre-Kelo rules and blocking the Supreme Court from reviewing it.
We need to restore property rights.

Achieve Sustainable Energy Independence. The country is eager for a straightforward new energy strategy for national security, environmental and economic reasons. The combination of $3 gasoline, watching Iran, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia and Russia get more of our money, and concerns about the environment come together to require real change. The House should meet that need. Starting with Rep. Jim Nussle's (R-Iowa) bill on renewable fuels, adding to it clean nuclear power using new technologies that are safe and produce little waste, developing more clean coal solutions, investing in a conversion to a hydrogen economy, incentivizing conservation, providing tax credits so the auto industry can invest in the new technology and new manufacturing equipment needed to produce revolutionary new vehicles, creating the tax incentives to build the distribution system for biofuels, hybrids, and hydrogen, providing deeper tax incentives for radically better cars (imagine a substantial tax credit for cars exceeding 200 miles to the gallon of petroleum through a combination of E-85 or biodiesel, hybrid use of electricity and hydrogen), and a bill to create state flexibility in exploring off shore with a 50% split in revenue so state legislatures and governors would have an incentive to develop environmentally sound methods of exploration and production.
I agree with energy independence, I am not sure that his plan would work. I am willing to give it a shot. We will say I am for it.

Control Spending and Balance the Budget. The House should pass new budget legislation to control spending, leading to a balanced budget in seven years (the length of time we gave ourselves in the Contract with America and which led to the first four balanced budgets since the 1920s), with special focus on programs liberals will fight to increase spending. Let the country see who is really committed to smaller government with lower taxes and who is committed to bigger government with higher taxes.
This is a no brainer.

Tie Education Funding to Teacher Accountability. A major result of the No Child Left Behind legislation has been the clear revelation that a number of schools systems are crippling and destroying children. When the Detroit school system only graduates 21% of entering freshman on time, it is clear the children are being cheated. The American people strongly support reforms designed to save the children. The first step would be to insist that federal funds only go to school systems which require teacher competency and accountability. A clear choice between those who want to save the children and those who want to save the bureaucrats would mobilize the country in favor of dramatic education reform.
I am NOT with Newt on this one. We need to ABOLISH the entire Federal Department of Education.

Defend America From the Irreconcilable Wing of Islam. Terrorism is a real threat. Congress should hold hearings on the recent terrorist activities in Canada, the U.K. and Morocco. The House should move bills that strengthen our security from terrorists with increased powers for surveillance, an overruling of the disastrous Hamdan decision and a series of other steps.
This one is dumb. We are not in World War 3.

Focus on Iran and North Korea. The American people are very prepared to believe we face extraordinary threats from a nuclear North Korea and an Iranian regime actively seeking to develop nuclear weapons. Any actions in Iraq need to be recast in terms of their impact on Iran. A weak America in Iraq will be unable to stop Iran. Stopping Iran is potentially literally a matter of life and death. Congress should hold hearings on the scale of the Iranian and North Korean threat, the statements of their key leaders and the requirements for action to replace these dictatorships before they succeed in killing millions of Americans. The Santorum Iranian democracy bill should be forced out of the Senate in the context of these threats. Everything about Iraq should be debated within this larger and much more dangerous context.
This one is fairly delusional as well... This one is awful.

Final score
I agree with Newt on six
I am in the middle on one
I am against Newt on four

Typical...

What do you think?

Mike Sylvester

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Allen County Libertarian Garage Sale

The Labor Day garage sale was a success and was a great deal of fun. Mike Kole (Secretary of State Candidate) was present and was interviewed by WANE TV. WANE TV aired a spot about the garage sale (And Mike Kole) on its afternoon and evening news. The coverage was positive.

I would like to thank everyone who helped make the garage sale a success. I would like to thank the organizers of the event: Doug Horner and Jack Evans. I would like to thank James Fitch who volunteered a great deal of time and the use of his truck for the event. I would like to thank all of the volunteers who helped with the event as well as all of the people who donated items to be sold.

I was extremely impressed with the large number of volunteers who donated their time to run the event. We averaged nearly nine volunteers the entire day!

There are several things I would ask everyone do in order to prepare for next year’s garage sale:
1. PLEASE send us a list of things you think we can improve for next year.
2. PLEASE start saving items for next year’s garage sale now. I will soon have room
in my attic I will save for this event. Throughout the year if you have items you
wish to donate we will store it if possible.
3. PLEASE plan on helping us with the event NEXT Labor Day. PLEASE save this
date in 2007.

Thanks again for all of your help. This was a large event that enabled us to both raise money and gain positive press coverage.

Mike Sylvester
Chairman of the Libertarian Party of Allen County

Verizon got greedy

Here is a letter I just got from Verizon:



Dear Valued Verizon Online Customer,
Effective immediately, Verizon Online is dropping its previously announced plans to impose a DSL Supplier Surcharge. We are eliminating this surcharge in response to customer concerns. The supplier surcharge has not been included in your bill.

Thank you for choosing high speed Verizon Online DSL. We appreciate and value your business.
Sincerely,

Verizon Online
Broadband Customer Care Team




What this means is Verizon's customers let them have it. It was just plain greed for Verizon to try to replace a tax with a surcharge... Greed...

MIke Sylvester

Monday, September 04, 2006

Garage Sale today

I hope to see you at the large garage sale The Libertarian Party of Allen County is hosting today (Labor Day). We are at Foster Park, Pavillion 2. We will be there from 8 AM until 9 PM.

Food will be served!

Mike Sylvester

Friday, September 01, 2006

Friday night

Karena and I took the kids to a Wizards game. We stayed for the first six innings and had a great time. I caught a "t-shirt" that was launched into the crowd. My kids were highly impressed to say the least.

The stadium was maybe 2/3 full.

These "people" who want to tear down a perfectly good baseball stadium and build a new one downtown are CRAZY. I just cannot believe ANYONE would think it was a good idea...

Wizards attendance is down 3% this year...

Mike Sylvester

Parent night at Oak View

My wife and I went to parent night at our daughter's Elementary School last night. It was a lot of fun...

We have an AMAZING PTO. The PTO raises a lot of money and funds an impressive number of events at the school.

I am looking forward to this year...

On another note: I remember getting into an argument with Robert Rouse about "the arts" in our local schools. Robert said that we were cutting "the arts" in our schools and I disagreed.

I can tell you this; the arts are going strong at Oak View. We have a separate teacher for art, music, gym, and reading at Oak View. We have a large and impressive music room and an art room. They are well supplied and have their own specific teachers...

"The arts" are alive and ell at Oak View.

Mike Sylvester