When Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced that Major General Robert Harding was President Obama’s latest nominee for the Transportation Security Agency (TSA), she said, “Mr. Harding has the experience and perspective [emphasis added] to make a real difference in carrying out the mission of the agency. If there was ever a nominee that warranted expedited…consideration in the Senate, this is it.”
Analysts are predicting at least a partial victory for gun rights after the Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday in McDonald v. Chicago, a case about the city’s draconian hand-gun ban that could have major implications for state and local firearm regulations across the nation. But even some supporters of the right to keep and bear arms have been critical of the strategy pursued.
Hillary Clinton will not easily be mistaken for Sir Winston Churchill, but our nation’s Secretary of State borrowed a metaphor from old “Winnie” recently when lecturing on the importance of freedom on the Internet. As the former British Prime Minister warned of the communist “iron curtain” descending on Eastern Europe at the beginning of the Cold War, Secretary Clinton has warned of an “information curtain” falling in those nations where governments have used modern technology to suppress and plunder, rather than facilitate, the flow of information among peoples and nations.
When U.S. Postmaster General John Potter recommended eliminating Saturday delivery service in order to save money, he was merely responding to the postal service’s continuing inability to make money, or even cover its costs, delivering the mail. In a microcosm, the postal service’s difficulty is reflective of the government’s attempt to operate anywhere outside the constraints of the Constitution.
James Madison, known to history as the Father of the Constitution, reckoned that “the first and most natural attachment of the people will be to the governments of their respective states.” Lately, the state legislatures for their part are demonstrating their resistance to imposition of federal healthcare mandates that would ostensibly force citizens in the several states to purchase a qualifying medical insurance policy.
"This is real hope," one enthusiastic attendee told this writer during the First Annual Tenth Amendment Summit held in Atlanta, Georgia, February 25-26. Sponsored by Georgia gubernatorial candidate Ray McBerry and the Tenth Amendment Center (Los Angeles), the summit was attended by a capacity crowd of 400 who all seemed to share the same sentiment — and who cheered as each of about two dozen candidates used his three minutes to pledge adherence to the ideals of liberty and state sovereignty if elected to office.
President Obama signed a one-year extension of three provisions of the USA Patriot Act Saturday February 27. House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.) explained two days earlier that the law will “extend three provisions of our foreign intelligence surveillance laws for 1 year. The provisions are section 206 of the PATRIOT Act, governing roving wiretaps; section 215, which addresses the collection of business records; and the so-called ‘lone wolf surveillance’ law. Without extension, these provisions will expire on Sunday coming.”
One frequent news angle in stories regarding The John Birch Society's sponsorship of this week's ongoing CPAC conference has been the question of whether so-called “fringe groups” like The John Birch Society should be admitted to the conference. Neo-conservatives like David Horowitz, whose website called CPAC's acceptance of The John Birch Society a “monumentally stupid decision,” has repeatedly fretted the sponsorship. Horowitz's view is to “Keep the Fringe on the Fringe.”
“Are we going to be free men or are we going to be slaves to the federal government of the United States?” retired state trooper and current State Delegate Charles W. Carrico, Sr. asked of the 1,000-strong rally gathered on the steps of the Virginia state capitol in January. While the like-minded crowd reacted with enthusiasm, such a rhetorical question might strike the average American as overdramatic. Are U.S. citizens really becoming “slaves to the federal government”?