Tweaking the Voting Method Again

July 20, 2010

The 17th amendment to the U.S. Constitution effectively weakened the power of states, and now another proposal would further alter the nation’s founding document to favor the pure majority.

The 17th amendment changed the selection of U.S. Senators from a state legislature decision to a popular election. Many argue that this change tipped the careful balance the framers sought between the federal and state governments too far away from the states.

Similarly, another tweak that would bypass the amendment process would change the election of president to reflect the popular majority as opposed to the electoral college system of basing votes for president on the state voters’ majority opinion. A OneNewsNow story details the plan:

A group called National Popular Vote (NPV) is pushing state legislatures to enter into a compact that calls for them to allocate their electoral votes in a particular presidential election to the candidate who gets the most votes nationwide rather than to the contender who gets the most votes in their state. NPV argues that the legislation “would reform the Electoral College so that the electoral vote reflects the choice of the nation’s voters” for president.

It will be interesting to see where this proposal goes. If successful, it will make voting for all elected federal government offices based on popular opinion. There are arguments pro and con to this.

Feds to Fund Abortion?

July 15, 2010

Remember when the passage of health-care ‘reform’ was in question earlier this year due to concerns that it would cover abortion? It eventually was passed thanks to the assurance from President Obama that no federal funds would go toward abortion.

Now comes this news:

Forget Barack Obama’s executive order to the contrary — the federal government will finance abortions in Pennsylvania. … $160 million in federal money will be used in Pennsylvania to finance a “high-risk insurance pool” plan that includes abortion — and those funds reportedly are available immediately.

Did anyone really think this wouldn’t eventually happen?

The First Amendment and Private Property

July 3, 2010

A story from OneNewsNow recently reported that the Pacific Justice Institute is suing a California shopping mall for what it believes to be a violation of constitutional freedoms. The alledged violation is that a mall policy bans the following:

… anyone [from] ever sharing their faith or political views with anyone else in the shopping mall at any time if they did not know that person prior to entering the shopping mall.

The story also reported that the mall had rules banning individuals from “wearing any clothing that displays religious or political messages.”

The problem with this argument is that the First Amendment, coupled with the Fourteenth Amendment applying much of the Bill of Rights to the states, prohibits the federal and state governments from abridging political speech or prohibiting religious freedom. It says nothing of private individuals or mall owners who have their own ground rules for individuals wishing to enter their property.

Americans have every right to express their political or religious views, but we don’t have a right to demand others allow us on their property to do so. This principle also applies to other freedoms.

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Obamacare and Abortion

July 31, 2009

Amid all the concern over the damage to costs and quality that the various health-care “reform” proposals could bring about, there is also the issue of potential government funding of controversial procedures. The chief among these is abortion.

An amendment that would limit the funding of abortions was struck down by the House of Representatives recently. A OneNewsNow story describes the amendment as follows:

The amendment said the healthcare bill may not impose requirements for coverage of abortion, except in limited cases.

Add taxpayer funding of abortion to the list of problems with the various health-care overhaul proposals making their way through Congress. Make that one more reason to oppose what some have dubbed “Obamacare.”

Quit Quoting?

May 25, 2009

It’s interesting to learn from this OneNewsNow story that an intelligence brief President Bush received daily often included a quotation from the Bible. The story focuses on the fact that the Obama administration has ceased this practice. Noting the controversy over this practice, the story states the following:

According to GQ magazine, the Bible quotes were apparently aimed at supporting Mr. Bush in 2003 at a time when soldiers’ deaths were on the rise. But they offended at least one Muslim analyst at the Pentagon, and other employees believed the passages were inappropriate.

I’m not sure what to make of this story other than the fact that President Bush was devoutly religious — which is something already well known. I am a little puzzled, however, as to how this practice originated. Regardless, it is an interesting tidbit that further enlightens our understanding of the Bush mindset in this post-Bush period.

So Much for the Whole “Loan” Thing

May 11, 2009

This article from OneNewsNow highlights the fact that the so-called tax payer funded bridge “loans” to the auto companies may not be paid back. Which, if my understanding of economics is correct, may not make them good loans in the sense that loans are — correct me if I’m wrong here — meant to be paid back.

But then again, what do I know. I should leave those decisions to the President and Congress since they are much wiser than me and are good at paying back money. Oh wait, I almost forgot about that whole federal debt thing. Oh well.

Price Tag on Air Force One Photo-Op

April 29, 2009

This AP video, posted on OneNewsNow, reports that the cost of the recent photo-op involving Air Force One, with jet accompaniment, flying low near Ground Zero is estimated to be more than $320,000. So much for the Obama administration going “line by line” through the budget cutting unwise spending.

“Equal” Protection Under the Law?

April 25, 2009

This story from OneNewsNow highlights how hate crimes laws like the one mentioned in Washington state base part of the punishment for crimes on whether the victim was a member of a protected class. The story gives an interesting example when it says:

The law creates different classes of people depending on who the crime is committed against. For example, one could rob their grandmother — which is obviously a crime — but would pay a higher penalty if they robbed someone who is transgendered.

The question becomes: Does this adhere to the guarantee of “equal protection under the law” in the Fourteenth Amendment? It’s debatable and doubtful.