Wednesday, November 09, 2005

59: "Perspective"

Take a little time to pat yourselves on the back fellow voters, as you have taken the first, and largest step required in seizing control of your government back from the thieving hands of arrogant tyrants. You have accomplished something in Pennsylvania that this blogger has never heard of in his lifetime. It is an accomplishment you can be proud of, yet you must not rest on your laurels, for the work is not complete.

Yesterday, you sent a message to the arrogant fools in Harrisburg, those who call themselves politicians and judges, those who have arrogantly usurped your Liberty to fill their own pockets. The message is: “Your days in office are numbered. Start looking for a day job. This is your one year notice.”

Read these quotations carefully, please:

"Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end...liberty is the only object which benefits all alike, and provokes no sincere opposition...The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern. Every class is unfit to govern... Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."
--Lord Acton

"Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual."
--Thomas Jefferson

“An honest man can feel no pleasure in the exercise of power over his fellow citizens.”
--Thomas Jefferson

"No man has a natural right to commit aggression on the equal rights of another, and this is all from which the laws ought to restrain him…the idea is quite unfounded that on entering into society we give up any natural rights."
--Thomas Jefferson

“The way to secure liberty is to place it in the people's hands, that is, to give them the power at all times to defend it in the legislature and in the courts of justice"

--John Adams

"I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations."
--James Madison

"The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it comes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is fascism -- ownership of government by an individual, by a group."
--Franklin D. Roosevelt

Who could argue that these men would not know what dangers exist to Liberty, especially in a democratic republic such as ours?

Such dangers have been detailed here, and elsewhere, over the past months. This blogger fears that with the election over, voter wrath will be spent, and will not carry for another year. Perhaps the legislature, the Supreme Court, and the Governor will conspire to keep that fire burning , however. It seems the pending repeal of the pay raise, passed last July during a 2 AM session of the legislature, with guidance and counsel from Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Ralph Cappy (oh how I wish he had been on the ballot yesterday!), and signed into law without a veto by the Governor, will NOT INCLUDE PAYBACK OF MONIES ALREADY RECEIVED!

Further, the Governor still insists on forcing Act 72 on the school districts of Pennsylvania, AFTER IT HAD BEEN REJECTED BY 80% OF THEM! Why? Here is the answer: Governor Rendell has courted the gaming industry for years, first as Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, gaining enormous sums of money for national and targeted state level Democratic candidates, and later, as gubernatorial candidate, to finance his own candidacy, and the state Democratic Committee’s candidates. In return, he promised the introduction of slot machines to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He got his wish past a Republican controlled legislature by cutting the legislators in on the deal: each legislator is allowed to own a percentage of a casino; there is no language in the legislation, Act 71 of 2004, that prohibits any legislator from owning any part of, or all of any of the peripheral companies that will support gaming, such as the Pennsylvania-owned distributors of the slot machines. There is, of course, nothing in any legislation anywhere that prohibits any legislator from owning stock in a gaming management company such as Harrah’s.

Act 71, therefore, is full of ‘conflict of interest’, since the legislative leadership, and the Governor also appoint members to the Gaming Commission, that oversees the gaming industry in Pennsylvania. Act 71 is also unethical since it institutes an industry into Pennsylvania which creates dangerous addictions, and feeds off other addictions to do so. Casinos generally ply gamblers with free or low cost alcoholic drinks in order to fog their judgment and keep them gambling. In response to this, the Pennsylvania General Assembly is diverting millions of tax dollars for the care of addicted gamblers, while cutting budgets for social services across the state.

In order to lend legitimacy to this highly unethical, egregious piece of legislation, the General Assembly passed Act 72 of 2004, the Homestead Act, granting tax relief to Pennsylvania homeowners. It is this Act that was overwhelmingly rejected. The Governor, and the General Assembly need Act 72 to keep Act 71 justified. Without Act 72, there is no legitimate reason for Act 71 to exist. Voters need to educate themselves to this enormous scam perpetrated by the greedy politicians of this Commonwealth, notably, the Governor, and the General Assembly. The Supreme Court, who had a chance to rule on portions of Act 71, failed to address the portions of the bill that were unethical, contained conflicts of interest, or posed a danger to the general population of the Commonwealth and any visitors engaging in Pennsylvania sponsored gaming.

Therefore, it is essential that not only does the entire pay raise get repealed, including all monies already taken by the legislators and the judges, but also the raises of the judges. Additionally, ACTS 71 and 72 of 2004 MUST BE REPEALED!

The media are putting their spin on yesterday’s vote not to retain Justice Nigro and almost the same result for Justice Newman. The Philadelphia Inquirer ran an article in which Philadelphia area people were puzzled by the NO vote on the justices. One Philadelphia citizen’s comment defines the problem: “Dave Duane, 24, of Chalfont, said he voted to retain the judges. ‘I thought about it,’ he said of the pay-raise controversy, ‘but it was not a big concern’.” People in Philadelphia and Pittsburg are quite inured to governmental abuse, corruption and scandal. These two cities, who admittedly do contribute to the state’s economy, but who contribute no more per capita to the state than anyone else, actually have been sucking the state’s taxpayer’s dry for decades, primarily with demands for supplemental emergency funding for transit systems, stadiums, and in the case of Pittsburgh last year, for the administration of the City itself. In Philly, the city government is so corrupt people have become jaded to it. Both cities have been ruled by the Democratic machines there for more than a half century. (Do NOT count the administration of Frank Rizzo as mayor of Philadelphia as a Republican administration. He went against the Democratic machine there, and switched parties to run on the Republican ticket.)

Spin it all you want, yesterday’s ouster of Justice Nigro, and the near ouster of Justice Newman was a clear signal to the elected officials of this Commonwealth that business better not proceed “as usual”. Business better change drastically. Current incumbents will face deep challenges in the spring primaries, and some may not even get their party’s nominations. Those that do will face stiff competition at the polls next November from candidates armed with the voting records of the incumbents. Nothing can be as damning to a candidate.

The fact is, the mid-state, and the western part of the state overwhelmed machine politics from Philadelphia and Pittsburgh to oust Justice Nigro, and only an eleventh hour initiative by Pennsylvania Favorite Son Tom Ridge saved Justice Newman from the same fate…and only by a narrow margin. She’s out in 2007 anyway as she reaches the mandatory retirement age that year.

Philadelphia and Pittsburgh news media, particularly the print media in those cities is in large part responsible for not making their readers aware of the problems in Harrisburg. In Philly, the dirty race for Governor of New Jersey got far more press than the dirty politics in Harrisburg. In Pittsburgh, why say anything bad about the state government when the state government is bailing you out financially? This makes the ouster of the judge, and near ouster of another all the more remarkable. It finally says to the constituents in Central and Western Pennsylvania that they can finally get those twin monkeys of Philly and Pittsburgh off their backs, and take control of state government away from the political machines.

That is justice for you. Pennsylvania voters, you’ve done well. I applaud you. I also caution you to keep your guard up, and remember the following maxims:

"Greed knows no limits, and has no character. Greed endures no absolute moral values, and has its own ethics. Greed has no memories but vengeful ones. Greed has no friends, and no family, only partners, and partners are expendable. Greed consumes and corrupts absolutely. Greed is blind to itself."
-- GettysBLOG


“Legislation without representation is tyranny!”
-- GettysBLOG

“Arrogance is a fool’s disease.”
-- GettysBLOG

“Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!”
-- GettysBLOG


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Remember next November, before you vote, GETTYSBLOG!

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