THE FALSE STANDARD

Richard_NixonArticle by Barbara Cornell

Syndicated by Barbara Cornell’s personal blog.

August 15, 2011 was the 40th anniversary of our official abandonment of all pretense of having a gold standard.

And marks the last substantive opportunity to avoid our nation’s downward spiral into bankruptcy. (We’ve had times when our government voluntarily refrained from spending more than those of us who apply our efforts to useful production could compensate for, but they were brief, fleeting anomalies).

The reason being that once a currency has no inherent value, it can be manipulated and devalued by political machines.

But, in fact, gold itself is a currency with no inherent value.

Gold has always been a «false standard» because gold has no inherent value. You can’t eat it, can’t make shelter out of it, it’s too soft to make functioning tools or weapons. It has a few, limited industrial uses but few of them can’t just as easily be accomplished by other materials. Its only value lies in:

It’s pretty, it’s rare and difficult to get to and: people agree to take it in exchange for things that do have inherent value.

investing-in-goldThe fact that it has consistently for many centuries been widely accepted as a value holder is why it’s the standard. Gold’s increasingly «false standard» is displayed in its comparative «value» to silver better than anywhere else. Silver has exactly the same inherent value as gold (it’s pretty…), and for many centuries gold and silver held approximately the same «value» (people accepted gold in exchange for inherently valuable commodities at approximately equal or up to twice the rate of silver), but gold has been increasing in «value» much much faster than silver. (As of today, gold sells for $1818 per troy ounce and silver for $40, a differential of 45 times.)

The difference between gold and currency issued arbitrarily by an entity (currencies haven’t always been issued exclusively by governments) is that its perceived value has maintained its independence from policy makers and was one step removed from its direct manipulators.

The only thing that can assure a population’s currency is not subject to manipulation is direct barter. And that sucks.

For centuries, the next best thing was gold.

But nearly anything is better than letting the value of your entire life’s work depend on Ben Bernanke’s morning bowel movement being satisfactory.

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TRAILBLAZING POLICE CHIEF, MARK KESSLER, TALKS GUNS AND FREEDOM

Article by Mark I Rasskazov.

The video above is the interview I had with Chief Kessler.  Once I got him talking, we ended up speaking on a number of subjects, where he cogently and succinctly explained his views on a number of political and philosophical subjects.

Some of the things we talked about:

c23838d5a26f73db2fd4ff5cb6c0bc2b_mooaObviously, the first thing we talked about was his interpretation of the second amendment, including his interpretation of the «Well regulated militia» clause.

We talked about the proper scope of responsibility of the government, given the constitution.

We talked about what prompted him to become so actively pro-constitutionalist on a national scale.

We talked about Obama and his policies.

We talked about Senator Feinstein and her Facebook page.

We talked about how he got banned from Facebook, and the new social networking site, Awareness Act.

We talked about Sandy Hook, and the parents’ response.

5e39a87359e4263c044f1cfa8dc40225_0h3sWe talked about how in most schools there are no armed guards, and how he was able to get it approved in his local school district.

He talked about his community in Gilberton, PA, and the relationship he has with his local government and his sheriff, as well as his take on Mayor Bloomberg and his ilk.

We talked about the responsibilities and attitudes of elected officials.

We talked about «illegal» guns.

We talked about gun registration and the Dick Act of 1902.

We talked about the Patriot Act.

06eac9103e93fcb297f012dfb200d2c2We talked about Congressional pay, the fact that they play the American people off of each other, and the fact that they vote for unconstitutional laws, as well as what we should do about it.

We talked about the possibility of a confrontation between the people and the government, including where he would stand, how many members of the government who would stand with the people, and how it would compare to the previous civil war.

We talked about the ATF and Waco.

We speculated on the possibility that the ATF’s classification of assault rifles as «machine guns» might represent a move to require a Class III Firearms License to own one.

We talked about the Supreme Court, the Constitution, the Law of the Land, and the legitimacy of the government.

3fc03d92b15b33efc249011d041b9892_o8fsWe talked about the possibility of impeaching president Obama.

We talked about the difference between a police chief and a sheriff, and why police chiefs are much more hesitant to come out publicly for the constitution.

We talked about the Constitutional Security Force, the civilian defense training organization, Fast Tactics, and his pro-freedom intelligence network, Oathbreakers.  We talked about violent crime, and how gun-ownership along with the proper training can help someone come out on top of a violent confrontation, and about how his Constitutional Security Force is partnered with Fast Tactics to provide training for private gun owners.

He closed with a call to action on the part of all liberty lovers to do their part to safeguard their freedoms for themselves, and for their posterity, and strongly reasserted the fact that our second amendment rights are the final safeguard of freedom against tyranny.

Connect with Chief Kessler on his website: [www.ChiefKessler.com].

OATHBREAKERS: YOU’RE ON A LIST!

OathbreakersArticle by Mark I Rasskazov, Editor in Chief.

NOTE (1032 29 MARCH 2013): The interview I conducted with Chief Kessler is now available for public consumption on YouTube HERE.

This evening, I had the pleasure of speaking with one Mark Kessler, Police Chief of Gilberton, PA for about an hour.  It was a recorded interview, which will be available for public consumption, soon.  In the meantime, I want to bring your attention to his website: [www.OathBreakers.US].  This is a website based on an idea which I find simultaneously awesome, hilarious, and empowering: that, just as patriots are put on lists for being pro-individual rights, and pro-constitutionalist, we, the people, will now start keeping a list of politicians that violate their oaths to the constitution.

During our interview, one of the things we discussed was the fact that the very first thing an elected official of the United States does upon getting elected is to swear an oath on the Bible to the Constitution.  If an elected official swears an oath to defend the constitution, and then does the opposite, then that person is unfit for office.

We need to start keeping a record of when our leaders break their oaths.  I encourage you all to go check out OathBreakers, and join the pro-freedom intelligence network.

The more powerful the people are, the more fit they will be to be free, and the more they will demand and exercise that freedom.

Long live the Republic.

THE WAY WE WERE

22d03086d426e5efb23078dbc1ad210a_1MEditorial by Barbara Cornell.

Syndicated from Barbara Cornell’s personal blog.

Thomas Jefferson was an architect.

John Adams was a lawyer.

Samuel Adams was a brewer.

Alexander Hamilton was an author and a lawyer.

pelosidow-213x300John Hancock was a shipping and wholesale merchant.

Members of the Continental Congress operated farms and conducted businesses.

It used to be that our elected officials earned an actual, productive living. Which means that they came together to enact legislation, make decisions and conduct the business of the government when necessary and then went home to support themselves and their families.

People who have a responsibility to fend for themselves and their families generally do not have time to interfere with whom you have sex with, what you eat (or smoke) or how you pray (or don’t). Only people who have no lives of their own can afford to be busybodies, tending to and intruding into the lives of others.

John_Boehner_at_the_barThe professional politician is the pernicious plague of our generation.

Member of Congress was intended as a temporary, part time, volunteer servant, not a career.

Term limits. No perquisites. No Congressional pensions. No Congressional health plans.

Washington: Go home and get to work.

THE AGE OF ENTITLEMENT

douchebagsEditorial by Barbara Cornell.

Syndicated from Barbara Cornell’s personal blog.

Suppose you have a friend who who makes $45k a year who owes $50k in credit card debt — not mortgages, not car loans, not loans that build equity, just simple living-beyond-his-means consumer debt — and expects to owe $100k in credit card debt by the end of next year because of things he’s already bought but hasn’t received the bills for yet. Now this friend asks you, «Do you think I should buy season tickets to the Mets or should I install a third swimming pool at my 2nd beach house?»

What do you tell your friend?

The US Congress is that friend.

Our current federal debt ($14 trillion) exceeds our gross domestic product (approx $13 trillion) and the federal debt is expected to double in the next few years*

congressTranslation: The federal government could confiscate 100% of everything everyone in the entire country produces this year and still not pay off what we owe on what we’ve already spent, and we’ve already made agreements to double this problem before we have any opportunity to «counsel» (with our votes) the people in government who are currently in office.

Taxation has no hope of fixing anything (unless you and everybody you know is prepared to work for the next two years without pay to bail out the country). So, discussions of whether we should tax the rich people more or corporations more, or whether we should have tax credits for production or tax credits for working poor are pointless. The time when we had any choice of what we should pay for and what we should not has come and gone. Soon we will not be able to borrow enough to meet basic human needs (clean water, police protection, defense of our national borders, sewage pumped somewhere besides the middle of the streets).

48tGY1It no longer matters which project you believe deserves to be paid for by the US taxpayer.

The Age of Entitlement must end.

That isn’t a political imperative. That is a simple, emotionless statement of fact.

Let me put it another way:

The Age of Entitlement will end.

Whether you believe that it should or not, whether you believe that it ever existed or not, whether you think it’s fair to use the term or not, it will end.

The only choice we have now is whether we can prevent this nation from becoming the next third world.

____________________

*For skeptics: depends on whom you talk to. The White House official budget publicity release says both that the budgets over the next 3 years will incur deficits of over $6 trillion and that they will reduce the debt by $1.1 trillion. I’m not sure whom they think they’re fooling with their double talk. However, estimates that include expected reduction in the amount that social security will contribute to the federal budget place the deficits much higher even than their worst-case admissions.

EAST OF MAINE

American-MilitaryEditorial by Barbara Cornell.

Syndicated from Barbara Cornell’s personal blog.

The country was in a horribly unpopular war somewhere way far east of Main Street. The President decided to hold a lottery, the first since Shirley Jackson hosted one that nobody wanted to win.

My father was 20-something, had just finished college, had his first «real» job and a pregnant wife when he won the lottery, and won big. There was no possibility of honorably avoiding going to war, and being college-educated and drafted meant being an infantry officer for either the Army or the Marines, the life expectancy of whom was famously 17 minutes. It didn’t matter if the number was accurate. The reality was.

So, he did the only thing that made sense. He applied himself to getting a pilot’s license as quickly as he could, doubling and tripling up on instruction, then presented himself to the Air Force, voluntarily, qualified to be a pilot. He served his tours in Viet Nam, and once the war was over, he decided to make a career in the military.

The military was a place where duty, honor, respect, organization, integrity were rewarded and laziness, irresponsibility, entitlement were not. It was a place where doing one’s duty was expected and shifting of one’s duty was punished swiftly, a place where leaving your fellow soldiers hanging out to dry was dealt with harshly and immediately. It was a place where everyone understood his responsibilities and carried his own weight, where personal achievement was rewarded and effort was made to direct each individual’s talents to the place where they could be best shaped and utilized.

After my father lead the way, 4 out of the six brothers in his family followed in his footsteps and served in the military. And after them innumerable sons and daughters also served and continue to serve. I have family pictures with 15 or more of my immediate family in their uniforms. And it still amazes me how much pride that gives me. The man who shares my bed has served in Iraq and faces another deployment soon to Afghanistan. I always took for granted that I would serve in the military. I looked forward to it. But … there were many forks in the road.

I was born at Ft. Sam Houston Medical Army Hospital. I spent my life in the military community and graduated from a military High School in Germany, where armed MP’s lined the halls, not because drugs or gangs were a problem or violence among the student body was a danger like many of the schools in the States, but because bomb threats were literally a daily occurrence (by my senior year, the buses dropped us off at the soccer field every morning so that we could wait for the dogs to sniff out the truth or lie of the current day’s threat of a fiery death to children). We all knew terrorism’s face long before Al Queda was a household name. We all had friends and family who had suffered terrorism’s wrath.

It makes me smile a little bit that my fellow Americans were able to maintain the illusion that terrorism didn’t exist until September 11, 2001, wrapped in gauze because men like my father were able to give you years of peace more than his own family had.

I watched my father, the most honorable man I’ve ever seen, serving his country, mentoring the men under his command, tending to their families, concerning himself with what was best for the troops, their families and the nation. I watched him pace the halls of our home in the wee hours of the morning preparing himself to deliver the news to mothers and wives that their men would not be coming home. I’ve held friends in my arms, silently, while they cried because their husbands would not see their unborn children. I’ve seen up close the terrors that follow men and women home from war. I’ve listened friends agonize and second-guess themselves for choices they made in a split second whether to live or die. I’ve known and loved these people as a group and as individuals. I’ve seen the best and the brightest, I’ve seen the strong and the broken.

I’ve seen what the US military produces: pride, joy, anger, frustration, community, belonging, alienation, hope, despair, ambition, patriotism, duty, honor, obedience, insubordination, victory and loss.

What I’ve never seen in the US military, even once, was a man whose individuality was destroyed to the point that he «follows orders without question» nor have I ever met a man whose goal in life or training prepared him to «kill civilians and destroy cultures.»

And it makes me smile that, even this far down the road, impossible as it may seem, we have a nation where we still have the luxury to think of bombs and mortars, pogroms and atrocities as things that happen «over there.» Wherever «there» is.

Somewhere.

Way east of Main Street.