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Congrats to Al Gore

His new movie about polar bears has just won a Humanitas award. I think that's kinda like an Oscar, except that nobody's ever heard of it or gives a shit.


Well, it says, the "Humanitas Prize...honours screenwriting that helps "liberate, enrich and unify society."

Yes, it seeks to liberate taxpayers from their earnings (in the form of more government and higher taxes for those expenditures), enrich government and government officials and unify those opposed to LIBERTY (personal responsibility and limited government).

In that particular and peculiar context, it does ALL of those things.

I wonder when, and in what phone booth they'll be having their awards show this year?

JMK, here's question(and I ask this with sincerity, not smarminess): with the love of "limited government," how do you handle such "discoveries" like the NSA wiretaps and Swift records? I know I'm opening Pandora's Box, but what is limited government to you?

That's a very good question Rachel and a valid one as well.

Before 9/11 I'd have completely agreed with those Libertarians who oppose BOTH the "welfare/warfare State," but since that event, I recognize that natrional security is a primary, Constitutional responsibility of government and our defenses must be ratcheted up in the face of an organized, well-financed, global threat - radicalized Islam.

I still would espouse a tight fisted approach to the Military - forcing it to do more with less, like the rest of government must be, but I support its mission, so long as that primary mission remains advanicing America's agenda upon the world, whether the rest of the world likes it or not.

I must confess that I've always been one who despised and derided such "over-reachings" (in my view) as the "Exclusionary Rule," and the 1973 SC decision that outlawed the death penalty.

I believe America's Founders were way ahead of their time, probably many centuries ahead. In our recent past the death penalty could be had for cattle rustling, so it's inane, in my view, to see that as somehow "cruel and unusual" now.

Hell, for one thing, cruelty is relative (thugs inflict unimaginable cruelty on their victims all the time) and it's hardly unusual (death is pretty common - an American dies every 13 seconds).

As for the NSA wiretaps, no one has ever intimated that the NSA tapped domestic-to-domestic calls. Yeah, I even read the NY Times article and (drats!) they were smart enough to assiduously avoid misrepresenting the program in the article, even though their title was somewhat misleading.

Here's a fact, the NSA was always allowed to tap correspondences INTO the U.S. from foreign portals under the umbrella term of "gathering foreign intelligence." And no, I have no problem with that, as it is "foreign intel," given that such communications originate in a foreign countries. Three federal courts and the FISA court also upheld that policy.

The ONLY thing the current administration has done differently is to EXPAND that policy to INCLUDE calls FROM the U.S. TO suspect foreign portals.

It's the flip side of the same legitimate policy.

We KNOW we have many terror cells within this country.

We also know that many of these, run by foreign nationals, often communicate to various "suspect foreign portals" (phone numbers or internet addresses).

NOT examining these communications would be a violation of the federal government's mandated Constitutional responsibility to "protect its citizens from all threats, foreign and domestic."

There, of course, is NO Constitutional mandate for government to equalize people, or to assist some (poorer) people at the expense of more productive and prosperous people. In fact, virtually ALL of America's Founders opposed anything (even disaster relief) that would give to some, at the expense of others. Even noted federalist, Alexander Hamilton opposed such actions...he even wrote a famous letter about his stance on that after a town in New England was ravaged by floods.

I also believe in "pattern analysis," even though in many, many cases it would be indistinct from what is often called "racial profiling."

Yes, it's OK (I've seen nothing in the Constitution that countermands it) to target certain ethnic groups of illegal aliens for detention and deportation, as the government did with over 4,000 Arab & Muslim males after 9/11/01, so, in my view, it's also OK to use ethnic origin (Arab or Muslim background for instance) for closer scrutiny at airports, at police checkpoints and in the course of "random terror investigations."

I believe in Guiliani's famous and controversial "stop & frisks" that were targeted at young, inner city, males and random sobriety checkpoints on roadways.

I believe all of those things are Constitutional under the provisions that mandate the government's responsibility for the protection of the citizenry from threats both foreign and domestic.

Like I said, I DO NOT believe that the so-called "general welfare clause" mandates or OK's any kind of equalization of incomes or redistribution of the wealth as (1) ALL of America's Founders opposed such things and (2) the "general welfare clause" is clearly a very, well GENERAL clause, it's meaning being that the government can do things so long as it promotes the General/overall welfare of the country...that is for both rich and poor, which, looking at it from that viewpoint, would bar any form of redistribution by the government.

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