The power of III

Summum ius summa iniuria--More law, less justice

28 July 2011

Headin' to Eastern Tennessee

Well, I finally got a long weekend together with my dad in Greene County, TN.  I am driving down tomorrow through the Shenandoah to Greeneville, where, believe it or not, my dad is just finishing the repairs and clean up of our property that was damaged by one of the tornadoes the fateful night of April 27-28.

We will have some good times, with beer, Smokey Mountain views, some bluegrass music, and time at the range with my .243.  Oh, my, am I looking forward to this.  

On Monday, on my way home up (bleah) North, I will pay homage to Stonewall in Lexington, VA.

Will try to post, but don't hold your breath.  Will have some nice pics to post when I get back.

Deo Vindice.

27 July 2011

Quote of Our Era

“If you think you have a right to force me to pay for your health care, then why don’t you have a right to force me to pick your cotton?” --Jeffery Quick

seen at FreeNorthCarolina, Billy Beck, WesternRifleShooters. 


Really, the quote above is the quote of our era, the era of challenging Big Government (aka big bag of suck).

How do we deal with that which would enslave us?

Moses kills the Egyptian taskmaster

Tea Party seems, um, upset with the status quo.

...a bit of British understatement, eh wot?

Verbatim post:


Tea Party Wants Boehner, Obama Fired

  • If House Speaker John Boehner or his senior leadership team thought they had the support of the Tea Party movement, they better think again. An internal poll of the largest group in the movement, the Tea Party Patriots, found that they are dissatisfied with the House leaders, Boehner in particular, and simply can't stand President Obama.
National Director Jenny Beth Martin told Whispers bluntly: "We're really not satisfied with any of them." [Check out editorial cartoons about the Tea Party.]
She said that the Tea Party Patriots on Tuesday surveyed "tens of thousands" of their members in 3,500 affiliates about the current leadership and found these stunning results:
--81.5 percent are not satisfied with the House GOP leadership.
--74.1 percent, asked if they want a new House speaker, said yes or maybe.
--71.7 percent are not satisfied with the performance of the House.
--97.6 percent are not satisfied with the performance of the Senate.
--98.8 percent are not satisfied with Obama's performance.
--Whopping majorities believe that their House representative and senators are more concerned with party politics than "what's best for America."
--62.8 percent trust neither party to fix the debt problem; 36.4 percent trust the GOP to fix it; less than one percent trust the Democrats.
Worse for those like Boehner and Obama trying to cut a debt ceiling increase, most do not want a deal unless it includes massive spending cuts, likely over the $4 trillion figure earlier under negotiation.
On Boehner, Martin and fellow National Director Mark Meckler, who both earlier today met with reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast, said the movement is worried that he is giving in too much to Obama. "He's not proven that he means to cut anything," said Martin. [See political cartoons about the budget and deficit.]
Meckler said that while the movement wants lawmakers to "stand firm" and not raise the debt ceiling, it could be done if major cuts were included far and above what's been proposed, though he wouldn't set a bottom line. "If you want to raise the debt ceiling, prove to us you can make some cuts," he said. "Get real. They need to act like adults," he added of Congress.

US News and World Report link

26 July 2011

Fast and furious hearings occuring in Washington over Operation Gunwalker

And the ATF, FBI, and the DOJ are in bigtime scramble/cover your a$$ mode...

“These guns went to ruthless criminals,” Carlos Canino, ATF Acting Attaché to Mexico said in testimony on Capitol Hill Tuesday regarding the scandal-plagued Operation Fast and Furious. “It’s alleged that over 2,000 guns were trafficked in this investigation. To put that in context, upon information and belief, the U.S. Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment has approximately 2,500 rangers. That means that as a result of this investigation, the Sinaloa cartel may have received almost as many guns that are needed to arm the entire regiment. Out of these 2,000 weapons, 34 were .50-caliber sniper rifles. That is approximately the number of sniper riles a Marine infantry regiment takes into battle.”

The Department of Justice proposed a southwest border strategy in October 2009 to combat Mexican cartels, with final plans for the operation now known as Operation Fast and Furious coming in January 2010. The new “strategy” included multiple law enforcement agencies, including the Drug Enforcement Agency, ICE, the IRS and the FBI. This operation entailed ATF agents watching straw purchasers buy hundreds of high-powered weapons and allowed them to go back or “walk” into Mexico, with a goal of “tracing” them back to cartel leaders. As Americans learned in the second hearing about this operation on June 15, guns were lost, not traced, and now a cover-up has begun.

“The Acting Director of the ATF, in a transcribed interview with investigators, has said that the Justice Department is trying to push all of this away from its political appointees. That is not the response this committee, Congress and the public, should expect from the ‘most transparent administration in history, [FOTFLMFAO-HM]’” Rep. Darrell Issa, Chairman of the House Oversight Committee, said during opening statements. “To date, President Obama has been keen to talk about who didn’t know about the program and who didn’t authorize it. These answers will not suffice. The American people have a right to know, once and for all, who did authorize it and who knew about it.”

link to Katie Pavlich at


“That is, I mean, this is the perfect storm of idiocy.” -- Carlos Canino, Acting ATF Attache in Mexico City, when he finally realized that gunwalking occurred in Operation Fast and Furious.



At a lengthy hearing on ATF's controversial gunwalking operation today, a key ATF manager told Congress he discussed the case with a White House National Security staffer as early as September 2010. The communications were between ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office, Bill Newell, and White House National Security Director for North America Kevin O'Reilly. Newell said the two are longtime friends. The content of what Newell shared with O'Reilly is unclear and wasn't fully explored at the hearing.

It's the first time anyone has publicly stated that a White House official had any familiarity with ATF's operation Fast and Furious, which allowed thousands of weapons to fall into the hands of suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels in an attempt to gain intelligence. It's unknown as to whether O'Reilly shared information with anybody else at the White House.

link to Cheryl Atkisson at CBS

Bloggers to keep following regularly, the two that broke the story in December 2010, 3 months before CBS, and facilitated the ATF agents obtaining whistleblower status:
Mike Vanderbeogh, Sipsey Street Irregulars
David Codrea, National Gun Rights Examiner.

This country has evolved into what we were raised to revile

"The connection between socialism and nationalism in Germany was close from the beginning. It is significant that the most important ancestors of National Socialism—Fichte, Rodbertus, and Lassalle—are at the same time acknowledged fathers of socialism. …. From 1914 onward there arose from the ranks of Marxist socialism one teacher after another who led, not the conservatives and reactionaries, but the hard-working laborer and idealist youth into the National Socialist fold. It was only thereafter that the tide of nationalist socialism attained major importance and rapidly grew into the Hitlerian doctrine."

--FA Hayek, The Road to Serfdom

Just remember boys and girls, the state is the enemy.  The bigger the state, the bigger the enemy. 

Socialist = National Socialist = Central planning = Big Government = Statism

Hasn't our government gotten quite large and Socialist/National Socialist enough for us?

Nationalized police, warrantless searches, assassinations of US citizens based on arbitrary assignment of enemy combatant status, "homeland' (vaterland) security, Blue shirted TSA thugs breaking down your sense of privacy, see something say something programs so reflective of the Secret Police of the Eastern European soviet bloc, the constant bleeding of the Bill of Rights...

Understand yet?

25 July 2011

Southerners are funnier than Northerners

...and more real.

Even the Pastors:

That's the way they do it in Tennesee!

Can you imaging a New England Presbyterian preachin' like that?

Third American revolution, reasons to fight: .gov violations against Bill of Rights

You have rights given to you by your creator and ackowledged by the Bill of Rights amendments to the Constitution.  Would you fight for these rights as they are taken away from you, or would you shrug, and say, "not my problem"?

Below is a pure and simple example of a federal government entity attempting to erode 5th Amendment rights. 

Just because it's not you sitting in the chair, doesn't mean it couldn't be you sitting there next year, or your kids in 15 years...

Encryption = Privacy = protected under the Bill of Rights.  Prosecuter and DOJ make themselves domestic enemies to the Constitution by pursuing this line, and having a judge back it up.  It shouldn't even be on their radar, if they respected the Constitution.


If the government obtains a search warrant to seize your computer and later finds that it cannot get into the device because it is encrypted, does that search warrant require you to produce your password and allow access to investigators?

That is the crux of a case currently being fought between the Department of Justice and a Colorado woman accused of mortgage fraud.

Ramona Camelia Fricosu and her husband, Scott Anthony Whatcott, were indicted last year for preying on people in the Colorado Springs area who were about to lose their homes to foreclosure.

In the course of the investigation, the FBI executed search warrants on Fricosu's home and seized her Toshiba Satellite M305 laptop. Upon inspection, however, they discovered that the device was encrypted, barring the agents access to its contents.

On May 6, the FBI asked a Colorado district court to compel Fricosu to enter her password into the computer. She did not actually need to tell the government her password; she "could enter the password without being observed," according to the filing.

Her lawyers, and now the Electronic Frontier Foundation, however, argued that that would be tantamount to self-incrimination. In a Friday filing, the EFF pointed to the Fifth Amendment, which says that "no person ... shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself."
"Decrypting data on a computer is a testimonial act that receives the full protection of the Fifth Amendment. This act would incriminate Fricosu because it might reveal she had control over the laptop and the data there," EFF attorney Marcia Hofmann argued. "The government has failed to show that the existence and location of the information it seeks is a foregone conclusion."

Link here.

Quote of the Day 7/25

Today's intrepid White House pool reporter, The Hill's Sam Youngman, on the state of the negotiations: "DC is a big bag of suck that couldn't solve a rubik's cube if it were all one color."


24 July 2011

Self proclaimed Knight Templar puts marxists to the sword in Norway: Anders Breivik

I was shocked like everyone else to learn that one man committed the Oslo bombing and the summer camp massacre.  What the mainstream media is thin on is details, of course.  The "summer camp" was a socialist party camp.  The stories in the news describe his anti-muslim bent, and softpedal or ignore his anti-marxist/ pro European nationalist ideology.  He is called "extremist/Christian/far right" etc.  

I was even more shocked to see the amount of time and organization that Breivik put into his publications, on YouTube and on the internet (1500 page manifesto on history, prepping, tactics, strategy, political goals, contingencies, etc.,  Agree or disagree with this guy, you have to be impressed with the effort he put into his publication.)  In his manifesto, he states that he is not particularly religious, and his organization is against hate groups that rule by coercion, including Nazi, socialist/communist, Islamic, and the type of Christian religious regimes that were prevalent in the middle of the last millenium, when Christian killed Christian over doctrine and political power.

His main goals are to eliminate Marxism from Europe, restore Nationalism, and expel Muslims from Europe.  He fancies himself and his compatriots the modern "Knights Templar".

Start with his video.  I will publish excerpts of his manifesto in future posts.

I don't know how long the YouTube link will last.  Alternate link here:

As a libertarian, my dogma is to not encroach on another person or their property (whether it is by intimidation, assault/murder, theft, etc.,). 

That is, unless the person is coming to hurt you, in which case you are not only allowed to defend yourself (you are morally obligated to do so), you should also make certain that that person won't be a threat in the future. 

Breivik felt that both Marxist/NWO/Socialists were an existential threat to everything he held dear in Norwegian Christian civilization, and he justified his violence against his government and the Socialist party summer camp in this manner.  His goal is to raise awareness, and by his actions, start the processes described in the video.   

In his reasoning, the multicultruralism brought by the progressive/socialists around Western Europe allowed the additional existential (demographic) Muslim threat. In his mind, both threats are to be faced.  

What I am trying to work out for myself is this: Given my baseline libertarian philosophy, how do I react to the same kind of creeping inexorable threat to my own way of life? It's not a guy breaking into my house with a knife or a gun. It's not a SWAT team busting into my house on a warrantless search, or a Federal or State authority trying to take away my guns.

The threat to those of us in this country comes from several angles: personal liberty, threatened by the size of government, irregardless of party in power; impoverishment, threatened by the size of government (debt), non-defensive military expansion and adventurism, and monetary policy;  demographic threats; and the gradual loss of local, state, and national sovereignty to creeping world government (call it New World Order, there are other names).

Breivik's concerns mirror my own;  I feel in my heart that what he did was morally wrong.  I could not randomly kill someone who may or may not be a threat.  I would have to know that the person was really a threat.    

This is the question his actions raise in my mind:

When you perceive a distant threat, should you be proactive, and ride out to meet the threat far from your realm, or do you wait until the threat is entering your house?

Theoden: What can men do against such reckless hate?

Aragorn: Ride out with me. Ride out and meet them.

Theoden: For death and glory?

Aragorn: For Rohan. For your people.

--J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

Defending Honor: Understanding why Preston Brooks caned Charles Sumner

 “What is life without honor? Degradation is worse than death.”
--Lt. General Thomas J. Jackson, CSA

This image is ubiquitous in every public school textbook of American history (that I have seen, including my 12 year old's).

The print depicts a brutal senseless act, with leering faces in the crowd. A faceless barbarian (South Carolina Representative Preston Brooks, Democrat) mercilessly beats a gentle quill-wielding martyr (Senator Charles Sumner, Republican, Massachusetts), his blood dripping off the cane.  

The image is not historically accurate, and is pure Northern propaganda. 

Southern character is mocked, as if Mr. Brooks' actions represent a typical Southern predilection to violence;  it caricatures every Southerner as a slave-beating overseer.

The press of the country was no less adept at spin and hyperbole in 1856 than it is today.

In today's public schools, history is only taught through modern cultural bias, which makes an event or idea, quite reasonable in the past, seem horrific to a modern child.  

What was Preston Brooks thinking at the time of the caning of Sumner?

Charles Sumner was a Boston-raised and Harvard educated attorney.  Sumner was probably the most vocal abolitionist in the Senate. In fact, his first major speech in the Senate was entitled "Freedom national, Slavery sectional," delivered in August 1852, in which he denounced the Fugitive Slave Act as unconstitutional. He was an el0quent fanatic for his cause.

The question of whether new western territories, in this case Kansas, would enter the Union as a "Free" or "Slave" state was the question of the moment.  The intricacies of the positions of the pro-Slavery and anti-slavery positions cannot be described adequately in an essay of this length.  The stakes were high for both sides, including the balance of political power in the Federal government,  setting new constitutional precedents, and, as always, economic considerations of private monied interests drove the politics.

 May 18, 1856, Charles Sumner rose in the Senate chamber, and delivered the speech that gave such offense (relevant excerpt):

Before entering upon the argument, I must say something of ...senators who have raised themselves to eminence on this floor in championship of human wrongs; I mean the senator from South Carolina, (Mr. Butler), and the senator from Illinois, (Mr.Douglas, who, though unlike as Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, yet, like this couple, sally forth together in the same cause. The senator from South Carolina has read many books of chivalry, and believes himself a chivalrous knight, with sentiments of honor and courage. Of course he has chosen a mistress to whom he has made his vows, and who, though ugly to others, is always lovely to him; though polluted in the sight of the world, is chaste in his sight -- I mean the harlot, Slavery. For her his tongue is always profuse in words. Let her be impeached in character, or any proposition made to shut her out from the extension of her wantonness, and no extravagance of manner or hardihood of assertion is then too great for this Senator. The frenzy of Don Quixote in behalf of his wench Dulcinea del Toboso is all surpassed. The asserted rights of slavery, which shock equality of all kinds, are cloaked by a fantastic claim of equality. If the Slave States cannot enjoy what in mockery of the great fathers of the Republic, he misnames equality under the Constitution -- in other words, the full power in the National Territories to compel fellow men to unpaid toil, to separate husband and wife, and to sell little children at the auction-block -- then, sir, the chivalric Senator will conduct the State of South Carolina out of the Union! heroic knight! Exalted senator! A second Moses come for a second Exodus! 
--The Crime Against Kansas: The Apologies For The Crime: The True Remedy., United States Senate, May 18-19, 1856

Senators Stephen Douglas and Andrew Butler,  according to Charles Sumer

This quote of Sumner's speech is a portion of the insulting language directed at Sen. Andrew Butler.

Preston Brooks knew this personal public insult required a response.  

He was the most appropriate person to respond  to Sumner.  He was the nephew of the infirm 59 year old Andrew Butler. He was a  South Carolinian. 

Brooks was 37.  Sumner was a well known athlete, and weighed 30 lbs. more than Brooks.

Context: The primacy of honor

In the contemporary cultural context of the incident in question,  the sense of honor refers to both a person's self-image, as well as how community peers viewed the person.  A person's honor could be forever damaged by public humiliation. In the Anglo-Celtic tradition of Brooks' contemporaries, honor was treated with the utmost seriousness, particularly among the landed educated class.  Personal honor and status in society was directly related to a man's behavior in public.  Insults and injustices required a verbal or physical response to satisfy the honor and dignity of the wronged party.

Context: Code Duello, mid 19th Century America

In 1838, John Lyde Wilson, the former governor of South Carolina, wrote a pamphlet called "The Code of Honor: Rules for the government of principals and seconds in duelling.  In Chapter VIII of the the pamphlet, Wilson wrote:

"1. The prevailing rule is, that words used in retort, although more violent and disrespectful than those first used, will not satisfy,—words being no satisfaction for words.

2. When words are used, and a blow given in return, the insult is avenged; and if redress be sought, it must be from the person receiving the blow."

This pamphlet describes the accepted norm of behavior of men of Preston Brooks' social class in his native South Carolina, and provides insight into his behavior in the wake of Sumner's speech.

Charles Sumner

Preston Brooks

The incident

Two days after the speech, Brooks walked up to Sumner, who was seated at his bolt-anchored desk in the Senate chamber.  Brooks stated his grievance and his intent, and without giving Sumner a chance to respond, he struck Sumner about the head numerous times with a gutta percha (natural plastic-hard rubber) cane.  Sumner tried to ward off the blows, but was encumbered by the desk.  In Sumner's struggle to rise, he pulled the desk's bolts out of the floor;  Brooks' blows came in quick succession.  Sumner fell unconscious with multiple scalp lacerations.  Accounts of the attack are varied, despite numerous witnesses. 

Some reports from the North describe a critically injured man.  Others implied that Sumner was not seriously injured, and milked the publicity for his Sectionalist/abolitionist cause. Abraham Lincoln remarked cynically: "The outrage upon Sumner & the occurrences in Kansas," writing to Sen. Lyman Trumbull of Illinois, "have helped us vastly."

Contemporary reaction

Predictable outrage in the North was expressed in newspaper editorials:

Attack on Mr. Sumner.

Boston, Massachusetts, Bee [American]

(23 May 1856)

-- " will be seen that Hon. Chas. Sumner, M. C., of this city, was ferociously and brutally assaulted in the National Senate Chamber yesterday, by a cowardly scoundrel named Brooks. An outrage so gross and villianous was never before committed within the walls of the Capitol... This bully Brooks who has disgraced the name of man, ought to be branded as a villain of the blackest dye, and then mercilessly kicked from one end of the continent to the other."

Southern editorials were effusive in praising Brooks' behavior:

Public Approval of Mr. Brooks.

Columbia, South Carolina, South Carolinian [Democratic]

(27 May 1856)

"...Hon. Preston S. Brooks had not only the approval, but the hearty congratulations of the people of South Carolina for his summary chastisement of the abolitionist Sumner.
Immediately upon the reception of the news on Saturday last, a most enthusiastic meeting was convened in the town of Newberry, ... The meeting voted him a handsome gold-headed cane, which we saw yesterday, on its way to Washington,... At Anderson, ...a meeting was called, and complimentary resolutions adopted. We heard one of Carolina's truest and most honored matrons from Mr. Brooks' district... saying "that the ladies of the South would send him hickory sticks, with which to chastise Abolitionists and Red Republicans whenever he wanted them."

Preston Brooks' own speech in defense of his actions includes:   " ...a senator from Massachusetts allowed himself, ...this uncalled-for libel on my State and my blood. Whatever insults my State insults me... I should have forfeited my own self-respect, and perhaps the good opinion of my countrymen, if I had failed to resent such an injury by calling the offender in question to a personal account. It was a personal affair, and in taking redress into my own hands I meant no disrespect to the Senate of the United States or to this House."


One hears the opening shots of the War Between the States when one reads the newspaper editorials written about the caning incident in the Senate chamber. 

The Pittsburgh gazette wrote pugnaciously:

"It can no longer be permitted that all the blows shall come from one side. If Southern men will resort to the fist to overawe and intimidate Northern men, blow must be given back blow for blow. Forbearance and kindly deportment are lost upon these Southern ruffians... Northern men must defend themselves..."

Historical memory 

The histories have been written by the victors of the War to Prevent Southern Independence.  

Preston Brooks was initially feted by his home state and community, and reelected to Congress. 

He is now remembered as a villain.

For those of us who choose to look, Preston Brooks can be seen in the context of his times to be a Southern patriot, true to the expected code of public behavior of his community.