San Juan Mountains

San Juan Mountains
San Juan Mountains: Grenadier Range

Saturday, May 17, 2014

The Federal Government Destroyed Marriage

I was watching the John Stossel show the other night.  This particular episode was dedicated to the institution of marriage.  Stossel, being a fairly consistent Libertarian, argued that government should not be involved in marriage in any way, shape or fashion.  He believes there should be a total free market in marriage.  I agree with him....up to a point.  That is what I would like to write about today.
First we need to understand a little background information.  Those who are not theologically astute will rapidly lose interest in what follows.  Feel free to depart and come back tomorrow where, hopefully, there will be something that will interest you here.  For those willing to plug on, let's go.
God has ordained it that there are three covenantal/authoritative societal institutions.  Those institutions are the state, the Church and the family.  I capitalize the Church because it is the preeminent of the three.  In addition to ordaining these three institutions He has also given each institution a complete summary of the rules and regulations necessary for its operation.  Those rules and regulations are found in the Bible and are usually referred to as the law of God.  Generally speaking if the leaders of each institution follow the law God has established they will be blessed.  If they ignore God's law or replace it with another, man-made law, they will be cursed.  It is all pretty simple actually.  This simple truth explains why every part of life in the Socialist Democracy of Amerika is presently subject to the providential punishment or discipline of God.  Except for individual instances of personal obedience to the law of God and the increasingly rare case of obedience in a particular church to His law, there is no blessing from God evident anywhere in this sad land.
What does this little theological diatribe have to do with the doctrine of marriage?  Quite a bit actually.  Marriage is the business of the family.  Stossel is correct when he argues that the government should not be involved in marriage in any way except to acknowledge that one has taken place.  In the same way, and this is a fairly recent conviction of mine, the Church should not be involved in the origination of marital units.  Like the state, the Church is involved in that it acknowledges that a marriage has taken place.  Unlike the state, the Church should only be involved in the acknowledgement of marriages when they are between Christian people.  The Church has no business acknowledging or participating in any way in the marriages of God-haters. What fellowship does light have with darkness?
The institution of the family is the ground source of marriage.  When two people decide to marry it should be the family hierarchy which works out the details of the ceremony and the union.  It should be the family members who put their blessing upon the union.  It should be the family members who witness the union and make it official.  After the union has been consummated it is then necessary to inform the state that a union has taken place and a new family unit has been created.  The state has a right to know which legal entities, in this case the new family, reside within its geopolitical boundaries.  Other than that, the state has no authority over the origination of the new family unit.  It has no right to require a license and it has no right to issue a pre-approval or post-approval of the union.
All of this background is necessary to understand how the federal government has killed the institution of marriage.  By inserting itself as the absolute authority over the institution of marriage the state has grossly overstepped its bounds.  By claiming to have the right to declare which marriage is legal and which is not the state has set up a series of perverse incentives that have brought about a multitude of horrible consequences.  The unintended negative consequences of the state's interference in the practice of marriage are rife.  Let's consider some of them.
The issue of the right of heterophobes to marry is one of the most significant of our time.  I have long wondered why heterophobes are so adamant about having the "right" to marry.  Nobody is stopping them from living together and doing whatever it is they do when they live with each other.  Heterosexuals, a full 60% of them if the statistics are correct, are happy to cohabitate without a marriage certificate of government approval.  Why do the heterophobes demand state approval for their unions?  The answer is simple....money.  Because we live in a socialist democracy where 51% of the voters live off the income of the other 49%, the process of dividing up the largess becomes crucial and quickly becomes one of life's most significant activities.  In order to continue to obtain government transfer payments after a homosexual partner dies it is necessary to be legally married in the eyes of the state.  In order to continue to get medical payments after a homosexual partner dies it is necessary to be legally married in the eyes of the state.  In order to get continuing disability and dependency payments from the state or a state regulated plan it is necessary to be legally married.  Heterophobes want to be legally married in the eyes of the state in order to preserve their future cash flow of stolen money.  If the state were out of the business of transferring wealth the heterophobes would have no motivation or inclination to obtain the approval of the state for their sinful and immoral unions.  They would be free to gather their families together, pronounce themselves married and head off for a life of sinful bliss. The long term threat of eternal punishment is insignificant when compared to the short term pleasures of sin.  I have no doubt that if the financial incentives were abolished the heterophobes and their demand for state recognition of their alleged "right to marry" would disappear.
Fornication is still a sin.  God is not pleased with the behavior of fornicators.  God will punish or discipline fornicators.  More and more senior citizens are making the choice to become cohabitating fornicators rather than marrying because of the perverse incentives set up by the state to do so.  Widowed seniors will often refuse to marry because doing so would cause their total social security benefits to drop.  Living together in sin allows them to continue to draw the maximum amount of social security even though it also subjects them to the future wrath of God.  The state should not be in the business of providing incentives for sinful behavior.  Once again, government mandated wealth transfer schemes have destroyed marriage.
Having children outside of marriage is still a sin.  It is immoral.  It is wrong. It is harmful to the children, which I always care about, and it is destructive to the moral fabric of society, whatever that is.  According to Stossel roughly one third of all children born this year will be born to an unwed mother.  Among black women for the prior year that percentage was 74%.  Why do so many women make the conscious decision to have children without being married?  Because the state pays them to have kids and not be married.  Aid to unwed mothers with children is a federal right.  Having babies is a profitable enterprise for many women.  The state, by subsidizing unwed motherhood, has driven a stake into the heart of marriage and created a nation of bastards.
Everywhere the hand of the federal government appears, open and filled with cash from the upper 49%,  damage to the institution of the family and marriage is sure to follow.  You would think heterophobes would see this but the promise of free cash flows in the future has blinded their eyes.  You would think cohabitators would see this but the draw of more money blinds them as well.  Unwed mothers do see this and they are entranced and enthralled by the specter of free money in exchange for having babies.  In the end all of these groups are getting precisely what they deserve.  In the final analysis each of these groups is statist.  That is, they all worship government.  Government is their god.  From cradle to grave they dream of, think about, meditate upon and participate in the activities of government.  Government justifies their very existences.  In exchange for their worship the Beast demands total loyalty and allegiance.  The institutions of the Church and the family are thrown on the trash heap and rendered culturally irrelevant.  Everything those two competing institutions stood for, like biblical law and the institution of marriage, is thrown on the trash heap with them.  For those of us who love the Church and the biblical family, this is a very sad day indeed.  But it is not the end of the story.  There is a day of judgement coming, hopefully soon.

Friday, May 16, 2014

The Supreme Court Ruling About Government Prayers

Perhaps you heard about the Supreme Court ruling last week in which, by a 5-4 vote, the Socialist Democracy of Amerika's highest court declared that municipal governing bodies may begin their meetings with Christian prayers.  Here, in part, is what was decreed:
"'Ceremonial prayer is but a recognition that, since this Nation was founded and until the present day, many Americans deem that their own existence must be understood by precepts far beyond the authority of government,' Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the court's conservative majority.  The ruling reflected a Supreme Court that has become more lenient on how government may accommodate religion in civic life without crossing the line into an endorsement of a particular faith. All nine justices endorsed the concept of legislative prayer, with the four dissenters agreeing that the public forum 'need not become a religion-free zone,' in the words of Justice Elena Kagan.  But there was sharp disagreement after that, and the majority ruling could encourage public bodies to give more leeway to religious expression in their ceremonial prayers and less deference to the objections of religious minorities.  The court’s five conservatives said legislative prayers need not be stripped of references to a specific religion — the prayers at issue often invoked Jesus Christ and the resurrection — and said those given the opportunity to pray before legislative meetings should be 'unfettered' by what government officials find appropriate.  'Absent a pattern of prayers that over time denigrate, proselytize, or betray an impermissible government purpose, a challenge based solely on the content of a particular prayer will not likely establish a constitutional violation,' Kennedy wrote."
There are four issues created by this ruling that we need to discuss.  Those four issues are: 1) public Christian prayer at municipal government meetings is deemed "ceremonial" in nature, 2) public Christian prayer at municipal government meetings may be offered provided it does not denigrate other religions, 3) public Christian prayer at municipal government meetings may be offered provided it does not proselytize those who hear it, and 4) public Christian prayer at municipal government meetings may be offered provided it does not go contrary to the rules, regulations and laws of that municipal government.  We need to consider each of these issues in more detail.
Ceremonial Prayer:  What in the world is ceremonial prayer?  I know what prayer is, or at least I think I know what it is, but I have no idea what ceremonial prayer happens to be.  Here is one definition of the term 'ceremony' I was able to find:  "A formal act without intrinsic purpose; an empty form."  That pretty much squares with my understanding of what a ceremonial act is.  So if I understand the Court's decision correctly, they are telling me that Christian prayers offered before government meetings which are merely formal actions taken without any intrinsic purpose and constituting nothing but empty forms are legal.  Why would they need to issue a ruling on that?  That is like saying the Court needs to issue a ruling allowing county commissioners to greet one another as "your honor" or to refer to each other as "my esteemed fellow commissioner."  We all know those are meaningless formalities and, now, apparently so is a Christian prayer used to open the meeting.  Why the Supreme Court needed to issue a ruling allowing county commissions to engage in meaningless actions is a mystery to me.
Denigration of Other Religions:  It is impossible to offer a Christian prayer and not denigrate other religions.  Christianity, in contradistinction to all the other religions of the world, claims to be exclusively true.  To believe in Christianity is to disbelieve everything else.  To profess Christianity is to profess all other religions are false and a waste of time. By definition a Christian prayer denigrates all the other religious beliefs that might be held by other people sitting within ear-shot.  Therefore it is logically necessary that the Court's present ruling must ban all non-ceremonial Christian prayer.  That is going to create a real conundrum as the courts attempt to determine if an individual prayer was ceremonial or not.  I suspect the Christians offering the prayers believe they are genuine. If so, they will run afoul of the law.  But guess what?  It won't matter.  Why?  Because nobody will agree over what it means to "denigrate" another person's religion.  That will have to be the topic for a future Supreme Court decision.  What a waste of time this all is.
Proselytizing the Hearers:  To proselytize is to, "To induce someone to convert to one's own religious faith."  To induce is to, "To lead or move, as to a course of action, by influence or persuasion."  So to use a Christian prayer to influence someone to convert to Christianity would be an act of proselytizing.  Allow me to suggest that it is impossible to offer a Christian prayer and not engage in the act of proselytizing.  The only way this would not be true is if the Christian prayer is ceremonial and therefore merely a meaningless form.  But then the prayer would not be Christian and I seriously doubt that the prayers being offered up in these meetings are self consciously meaningless.  By definition a Christian prayer is speaking to the Christian God.  Contrary to popular opinion, the God of the Bible does exist and He has opinions about all sorts of things.  One of those opinions is that He should not be addressed by people who hate Him.  Also, by definition, anyone who is not a Christian hates Him.  When a Christian offers a prayer to God at the start of a municipal government meeting he is doing so with the implicit understanding that those who are influenced by his prayer need to be in right standing with God to avoid His wrath.  What is that if not an act of proselytization? What is that if not a call to repentance?  What is that if not illegal under the new ruling?
Nothing Contrary to Government Rules:  Now this is a sticky wicket.  Given the fact that the great majority of the rules, regulations and laws created by municipal governments are immoral and contrary to God's law, how can a Christian open a municipal meeting invoking the presence of God without, by definition, praying contrary to the law of the county?  Asking God to "bless" or "guide" the meeting or the commissioners is the same thing as asking Him to providentially overthrow the law of the county or city because the blessing of God is never granted to those who break His law.  Invoking the presence of the God of the Bible to a meeting in which those who are empowered to make decisions about law are repeatedly making decisions that are contrary to His law is a very stupid thing to do.  Of course none of this is true if the prayer is a  meaningless form.  In that case all bets are off.  But then why would everyone be so upset about this issue?
Dave Fangrow of Denver wrote a letter to the editor of the Denver Post yesterday in which he argued that the Court's decision, "is clearly absurd and gravely weakens the separation of church and state in this country.  We call on all Denver citizens to insist that our civic institutions remain steadfastly secular and reject the call by some to begin meetings with a religious prayer."  Preach it Dave!  Amen!  I am with you on this one...up to a point.  Let me explain.
Dave is correct that municipal governments in the Socialist Democracy of Amerika operate in a post-Christian society.  There is nothing in any branch of government in this sad and disgusting land that is redeemable.  It is all rotten to the core.  That being the case, it necessarily follows that there is no connection between the Christian church and the SDA government at all.  They are polar opposites.  They stand in complete contradiction to one another.  It no more makes sense to offer a Christian prayer at the start of a county commissioners meeting than it makes sense to say the Pledge of Allegiance to the SDA at the start of a church service (although I know some churches that do).    What relationship does light have with darkness?  Answer:  None whatsoever.
So Dave is correct, get Christians out of municipal government.  They have no voice and they should not be permitted to speak, much less to pray to a God who really exists and who holds a highly unfavorable opinion of everything that is going to transpire after the "amen" is said.  But Dave does not go far enough.  He realizes that there is no connection between the Christian church and Caesar but what he fails to recognize is the incontrovertible fact that he worships Caesar.  That needs to change.  The ancients were so much more honest than we are today.  Ancient civilizations in the west during the time of the Roman Empire realized the importance and propriety of emperor worship.  The cult of Caesar is what solidified the empire  In the exact same way in our country today the cult of state worship solidifies the empire.  Government is god.  Let's all admit it to ourselves.  Government is god and career politicians are his priests.  As such all meetings of bodies of civil government should, at the very least, begin with a prayer to its deity.  Here is one I would suggest as appropriate for the opening of a meeting of county commissioners or a municipal governing body:
"We, the majority of the people who take the time to vote, which art god, do hereby invoke the presence of ourselves at this most holy gathering.   We grant our blessing and send our best wishes to the career politicians we have appointed to conduct these meetings in our name.  May they continue to create God-hating laws that steal from and oppress that hated minority of the people known as the upper 49% of the income population.  Bless their efforts as they continue to harass smokers and Christians for their horrendous practices and biblical beliefs.  May they and their body of immoral laws grow and expand exponentially.  May they come to fill our lives and usher us into the glory of the civil government heaven where we will all live off the backs of the 49% forever.  Amen."

{If you have not read Mark Twain's War Prayer, you should.}
 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Is Obamacare A "Success"?

I was sitting around watching the cable news networks the other night when I just happen to flip to a show hosted by a twenty-something hipster speaking with a lisp and sporting a pair of fake eye-glasses.  I was intrigued.  I had been flipping back and forth between Fox, CNN and MSNBC while paying careful attention to the stories they deemed most relevant and important that evening.  Fox was ranting about Benghazi and trying to derail Hillary Clinton's upcoming presidential bid.  CNN had an interview with a black man about how white folks in the Socialist Democracy of Amerika continue to be terrible racists.  The hipster was on MSNBC.  His idea of the most important news story of the day was his belief that Obamacare, contrary to what those idiots on Fox were saying, is a smashing success.  I was intrigued even more.  I decided to spend some time with him and see how he was going to make his case.
With a degree of smugness and an attitude of elitism rarely seen even on cable television news shows the young hipster proceeded to inform poor, ignorant me that Obamacare is a success for one huge reason.  His reason?  Eight million citizens of the SDA have signed up for it.  Wow, I thought to myself, that is one powerful argument!  Let me get this straight.  A government program is a success because eight million people make the involuntary decision to become a part of the program?  Obamacare is a success because the law requires everyone to participate and eight million people decided to comply with that law?  Eight million people sign up to avoid paying a cash penalty for failure to sign up and that is a success?  That's it?  Where is the beef?
Apparently I am too ignorant (quite possible) or too dumb (even more possible) to understand the huge logical significance of eight million people signing up to receive a handout from the federal government.  In further support of the hipster's argument, Ken Lambdin of Centennial wrote a letter to the Denver Post yesterday making exactly the same argument.  Ken was incensed that someone else had written a letter to the editor a day or two earlier making fun of Obamacare.  Ken says (in response to the previous letter), "apparently letter writer Jon VanCleve believes that 8 million people, the number of people who signed up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, are wrong and he is right.  The fact that Oregon was unable to get its own state exchange and website to function correctly and that Massachusetts has had a difficult time building an ACA-compliant website doesn't change the facts.  Eight million people now have insurance and many millions more have been added to the medicaid rolls, meaning ACA is on its way to success."  So there it is again.  A socialist government program is deemed to be a success simply because millions of people sign up to be on the receiving end of government handouts.  What am I missing here?
The hipster on MSNBC went on to interview a guest who told a story about what happened in a small Oklahoma town recently.  According to the guest a man went to an insurance office to purchase a health insurance policy from the Oklahoma exchange.  When he received a premium quote he said something to the effect that, "this is much better than what I would have been forced to purchase under Obamacare."  The joke, of course, is that he did not realize the Oklahoma state insurance exchange was just a branch of Obamacare.  The hipster looked into the camera and with great seriousness informed us that Obamacare is a success became millions have signed up and this fellow from Oklahoma was happy about getting a subsidized rate that was lower than what he had been paying.
Too bad the hipster did not interview me. I happened to be in Oklahoma myself this past winter.  I was in the extreme western part of the state, seeking to get to the top of its highest "peak".  (The "peak" is Black Mesa and it is a very enjoyable hike.  We made it.)  While dining in a local restaurant in the tiny town of Boise, my wife and I overheard a couple of ranchers who had met for breakfast complaining about how much their health insurance premiums had risen as a result of Obamacare.  I guess it all comes down to which restaurant you happen to be sitting in.  I wondered how many people watching the MSNBC report did not understand the logical fallacy of universalizing individual experiences as the norm.  Not many I suspect.
To answer the question if Obamacare is a success I think we need to define what it means to be a success.  This is especially true when we are talking about a government give-away program.  Many people consider the SNAP (food stamps) program to be a huge success because the government is giving away more in food stamps than any time in history.  Many people consider it to be a success because more people have been successfully made dependent upon government handouts.  Where the money is coming from to pay for the gigantic give-away is not considered.  In the same way Mr. Lambdin rejoices that "millions more have been added to the Medicaid rolls".  Those who receive Medicaid pay practically nothing for it and have all of their medical bills paid for by the taxpayers.  Is that a success?  I guess if you are a recipient of government transfer payments it is a success for you.  You also would consider the program to be a success if you had a job in the bureaucratic machine responsible for the transfer payments.  In fact, I guess the only person who would not consider the program to be a success would be the poor taxpayer who has to pay for it.  And who cares about him?  Nobody, of course.  He is in the top 49% of the income population and his vote, because he is in the minority, does not count.  In fact, if the taxpayer who is funding the medical bills of the people who are receiving the government subsidies has the audacity to complain about the fact he is being gouged he is immediately labeled as unpatriotic and accused of not paying his fair share.  What a deal that is.
In the real world a financial program is labeled a success when it shows a profit.  In fact, in the real world a profit is the only accurate and true measure of success.  When a profit is realized it necessarily follows that investors who made the voluntary decision to risk their own money in a business have created a product that other people made the voluntary decision to purchase.  If enough people like the product a profit is realized.  Nobody is forced to buy the product.  Nobody has his money stolen from him and given to another.  Nobody gets something for nothing at someone else's expense.  Nope, in the free market everyone gets exactly what he wants at the price he is willing to pay.  Now that is what I call a success.
Obamacare, on the other hand, will never be a success.  By definition it is a money loser.  By definition it is being subsidized by the taxpayers, high income earners, profit seeking businesses and the Federal Reserve Board (via inflation).  By definition it is theft.  By definition it is immoral.  I have a hard time seeing how any immoral program of organized theft could or should ever be labeled a success.  But who am I to argue with the majority?  Will it garner the support of the millions of people who stand to get something for nothing?  Of course it will.  Nobody is able to walk away from a government agent offering them a "free" bag of money.  Obamacare, like all other government programs, creates winners and losers.  When it comes down to government wealth transfer programs the determination of success is wholly dependent upon whether you are one of the winners or one of the losers.  My health insurance premiums have gone up by 50% in the last year and I am forced to carry coverages I don't want.  I conclude that Obamacare is not a success in my home. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The IRS Stole My Money

Have you ever received a letter from the IRS?  I suspect most people have, at one point or another.  I have received three or four letters from them over my adult life.  You know what they look like.  They are stamped with words like "Official Government Business" or some such thing.  When I get one I am almost afraid to open the envelope for the fear of doing something wrong just by touching it.  Once I muster up the courage to open the envelope things do not get better.  The letter is always written in a very stern tone.  All of the letters I have received are known as "request for information" type letters.  In other words I am not being audited, I am just being ordered to provide more information about a tax return I had filed previously.  What I find most outrageous about these request for information letters is that the IRS assumes that I am guilty of breaking some tax law unless I can prove myself innocent.  If I choose to not respond to the letter I will be in big trouble.  I thought the Constitution of the United States of America declared that the government had to prove that I was guilty of breaking the law and that I was presumed innocent until it did so.   Apparently that has changed.  Under the terms of the unwritten constitution of the Socialist Democracy of Amerika all subjects to the royal crown are presumed guilty until they can prove themselves innocent. 
Anyway, that is not the point of today's post.  When I open my letter I inevitably discover that I have committed some horrible crime and the IRS is demanding that I prove myself innocent by some future date.  Failure on my part to do so will result in fines, penalties and, if I allow things to go on too long, confiscation of all my assets and eventual incarceration.  Needless to say, those threats do a good job motivating me to attempt to prove myself innocent.  I scurry about trying to dig up paper evidence in support of my position and then I send all of that back to the IRS, return receipt to be sure it gets there on time, along with a long letter explaining my position while praying that I don't hear from them again.  Usually I don't.  The moral of the story is that when dealing with the IRS, always do what they demand when they demand it.  Follow their orders precisely.  Be submissive.  Maybe things will turn out OK.  But what happens when I have an issue with the IRS?  Then things change dramatically.
My mom died in February of 2013.  As a part of the family division of labor I assumed responsibility for filing her 2012 state and federal tax returns.  After gathering up all of her records I was able to piece together a pretty accurate return.  If there was any doubt about an item I would always err on the side of caution.  I did not want the IRS contesting her return.  I left quite a few deductions on the table so as to not raise eyebrows with the bureaucrats at the IRS.  I mailed the return to the IRS and sat back to await the $1200 refund it showed my mom's estate deserved.  And I waited.  And I waited.  And I waited some more. I am still waiting.
The IRS website allows me to check on the status of her return.  After a month or so I started checking the status on a daily basis.  Every day I was informed of the same thing.  It was "being processed."  So I waited some more.  By the middle of the summer I decided to spring into action.  I contacted the IRS and they informed me that they could not tell me anything over the phone and if I wanted to get an update on her return I needed to go to an IRS office where I would be waited upon first come, first served.  The agent on the other end of the phone warned me that I should be prepared to spend the entire day at the IRS office.  Not having an entire day to spend in a government office, not to mention the damage to my health that would be done by doing so, I looked for another option.
I had read about how the IRS had created a "taxpayer advocacy office" as the result of a congressional order to do so.  I wondered if that office might be able to help me so I called them up.  I got a congenial fellow on the other end of the line and explained my situation to him.  He told me to hold while he checked it out.  I held, and I held, and I held.  Eventually he came back and told me that my mom's tax return had been processed but it was being held because of a potential claim against her estate.  I asked him who was bringing that claim and he informed me that he could not tell me but I was welcome to spend an entire day at the IRS office in order to find out.  I thanked him for his total lack of help and hung up the phone.
I pondered the situation.  The only possible entity that could have made a claim against my mom's tax refund was the state in which she had lived prior to moving to Colorado.  Her state tax return for 2011 was filed in her prior state.  I filed her 2012 state return with Colorado, paying a small amount to settle her debt with the state, and that payment was gladly accepted by Colorado.  She had lived in Colorado for more than a year and the prior state had no claim on her federal refund whatsoever.  I decided to take the bull by the horns so I sent a detailed message to the IRS explaining how her prior state of residence had no claim on her estate.  I pointed out that I had thorough written records supporting my position and I would be glad to make my case with any IRS agent who was willing to hear it.  I sent the letter to the IRS and sat back to await their response.  I waited, and I waited and I waited some more.  I am still waiting.
It has been almost a year and a half since the IRS received my mom's 2012 tax return.  In the meantime I filed the 2013 tax return on her behalf.  I received the small refund on that back in a matter of weeks.  Along with the 2013 return I enclosed a letter gently reminding the IRS of the fact that the 2012 refund still had not been paid.  I have heard nothing to date.  You should be aware that the IRS has made no effort to contact me about my mom's 2012 return.  I have heard nothing from them.  Absolutely nothing.  I have contacted them numerous times and they have ignored every single thing I have sent.  I have begged, pleaded and cajoled them to give me some information so I can resolve the matter.  They pretend as if I do not exist. Everything that has gone to the IRS has apparently fallen into a black hole.
How long do you believe the IRS would be willing to wait for me if I owed them money?  How long would it be before I would be thrown in jail or have my bank account confiscated?  Yet when I do everything I am required to do they are free to totally ignore me and keep the tax refund they legally owe my mom's estate.  I have no recourse.  The man at the tax advocacy office informed me that I could spend all day sitting in the IRS office only to find out that they will not tell me why they are holding the refund from me.  The man at the tax advocacy office told me that he knew why the IRS was withholding the refund but he could not legally tell me who professed to have a claim against my mom's refund.  In other words, someone (her prior state of residence I am convinced) has made a claim against that refund and it is against the law for me to know who it is.  Does that strike anyone besides me as morally wrong?
Why does the IRS not have the basic decency to at least send me a letter describing the situation and explaining the reason for the wait?  Why does the IRS not at least respond to my letters requesting more information on the matter?  Where can I go to put the IRS in jail for doing the exact same thing that, if I did it, would land me in jail?
My mom's estate matters have been fully administered.  In fact, they have been wrapped up for over six months.  The only item still outstanding is the refund she is due from the IRS.  But now we have to close the estate.  We cannot keep it open indefinitely while we wait for the IRS to send us her money.  The estate will be closed this week and the money she was owed will be effectively stolen.  We will never see it.  It is gone.  I have learned a valuable lesson here.  In the SDA the IRS is free to steal my money and there is not a thing I can do about it.  Praise the State!  Praise the SDA!  Praise the IRS!

Update: September 2, 2015;

Guess what came in the mail today?  You guessed it.  My check from the IRS that I have been waiting for forever.  It came with no letter, no explanation and no interest paid despite its late arrival.  It also came payable to the personal representative of my mom's estate so we will actually be able to cash it.  I am going to rush out and buy a cigar and a bottle of fine Welsh whiskey and celebrate the dedicated service of the IRS.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Militant Heterophobes Infiltrate Christian Circles

Today's heterophobes ("homosexuals" is the term usually used to describe these people.  I prefer heterophobes because they are clearly phobic about heterosexuals) are a lot like the Communists were back in the 1950s.  The Communists were very patient.  They knew that changing the mindset of an entire society takes time.  They were willing to diligently work over time, trusting that their efforts would gradually change the way language was used and eventually change the way people think.  Although the Amerikan Communist party is a non-entity, they were entirely successful in changing the way people in this land think.  Largely as a result of their efforts the United States changed into the Socialist Democracy of Amerika.  Because of their long-term, patient undermining of human morals and the consist detachment of rational thought from reality, they were able to turn a nation of responsible individuals into a nation of special interest groups each of which is dependent upon the federal government for its existence.  Thanks to them we now have a socialist government that has its hands in the pocket of every single citizen.  Marx would be proud of what they have done and what we have become.  But that is not the point of today's post to this blog.  I only mention the Communists because the heterophobes have adopted their methodology in order to undermine Amerikan society and obtain special social and financial privileges for themselves.
The fact that the heterophobes have been very successful in converting the rank and file of the career politicians in this land to their side does not surprise me.  Career politicians have no principles and live by no morals.  Actually, that is not entirely true.  They have one guiding principle for life...whatever will get them elected is what they believe.  The Republican party, splintered by the Tea Party faction (which only represents historic Republicanism), is desperate to regain control of both branches of Congress. To do so they have publicly announced that they are "widening their tent."  What that means is they are jettisoning traditional Republican morals in order to become more like the Democrats.  A huge part of that shift involves the heterophobes, who are now welcome in the Republican tent.  Yep, rather than standing up for traditional marriage and family the Republicans will now craft legislation granting special privileges to the heterophobes.  But even that does not surprise me.  The political process is one of continual moral degeneration.  What I want to write about today is how the heterophobes have successfully infiltrated the Christian church.  That is what I find shocking.
Heterophobes are smart. They know that the God of the Bible is their number one enemy.  They know that many churches that call themselves Christian continue to believe at least some parts of the Bible.  They therefore know that if they are to win the cultural war and attain social prominence in the SDA as a particular class of morally superior beings, they must get rid of the Christian teaching that homosexuality is sinful.  For those of you unfamiliar with theological terms, that means homosexuality is immoral.  For those of you unfamiliar with ethical terms (pretty much any government school graduate), it means homosexuality is something your mom and dad used to describe as being "bad."  If you don't understand that concept you might as well go to another web page now.
I found myself in a somewhat protracted debate with a fellow Christian on a social media website the other day.  He had taken exception to a comment I wrote in an earlier blog post in which I wrote, "God does not love homosexuals."  That is a common criticism of my position on the doctrine of God's love.  I hear it all the time.  Most Christians today believe that God loves everyone and hates no one.  I hold to the doctrines of historic, orthodox Christianity (think Puritans here...) which teach that God does indeed hate particular groups of people depending upon how they behave.  A Bible verse might be helpful here.  I Corinthians 6: 9-10 says, "Or do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God."  God plainly states that fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, homosexuals, thieves, drunkards and swindlers shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.  For those of you who do not know, not inheriting the Kingdom of God is a bad thing.  You should want to inherit the Kingdom of God.
The debate with my Christian opponent took a rather bizarre twist as he, I believe I am telling this accurately, took the position that God does not hate those whom He condemns to Hell.  My opponent believes that God loves all human beings, without exception, and that includes all homosexuals at all times and in all places.  In other words, God loves the various groups we just read about and sends them to Hell because he loves them, or in spite of the fact that He loves them, I am not sure which. When God sends a homosexual to Hell He does not do so because He hates him but somehow he is sent to Hell because He loves him.   I don't think I quite understand his argument but it spurned on some thoughts in my mind that ended up being quite productive.  Oh, and I also discovered, not for the first time I might add, that I am "arrogant and rude." Thank you social media.  I think I will stick to my blog and my faithful audience of 3 readers.
As I pondered the doctrine of homosexuality something occurred to me for the very first time.  My opponent wrote that there are three "types" of homosexuals.  The first type has homosexual urges but does not act on them, the second type has homosexual urges and does act on them but later repents of those actions and the third type has homosexual urges, acts on them and thinks they are good deeds.  At first his distinction seemed reasonable to me.  Then I realized it was a trap.  Now I don't think he constructed the trap.  In fact I don't think he is even aware of the trap that he has fallen into.  I almost fell into it myself.  Just when I was about to agree with him on the doctrine of three "types" of homosexuals it occurred to me that he was doing the same thing that government licensed psychiatrists do with drunks.  Oops, I mean alcoholics. 
In order to make alcoholism more socially acceptable and cast those who participate in it as a special class of victims in need of government transfer payments it was necessary to declare that a person is an alcoholic by nature, not because he drinks until he is drunk.  We all know the mantra.  There are three types of alcoholics:  those who are alcoholics but don't drink, those who get drunk but feel bad about it and those who get drunk and like it.  By defining a sinful behavior as a state of being rather than a behavior it is possible to develop a special class of people which needs special attention and government privileges.  I believe that is what the heterophobes are trying to accomplish.
Think about it for a moment.  Is a "homosexual" really a homosexual if he does not engage in homosexual practices?  I think most Christians would say, "Yes."  If you do you have been snared in the trap.  Try looking at it from another perspective.  Am I a thief if I am tempted to steal my neighbor's lawnmower when I see it in his back yard, but don't?  Am I a fornicator if I am tempted to have sex with a woman, but don't?  Am I an adulterer if I am tempted to have an affair with my neighbor's wife, but don't?  Am I a swindler if I am tempted to concoct a scam to steal some of your money, but don't?  I believe every Christian in the SDA would answer every one of those questions with a resounding, "No."  Why?  Because you have to engage in the sin to be the sinner.  Simply being tempted to engage in the sin does not make me the sinner.  I am not an adulterer until I commit adultery, whether I am tempted to do so or not.  Yet when it comes to homosexuality everything changes.  Why would that be? 
I believe the answer lies in the fact that the heterophobes are clandestinely changing the way we think about them and their behavior  They are carving out a place in our society where they are going to eventually be granted a special privileged status.  In order to do this they need to be defined as being a true special interest group that is different from everyone else in the universe.  They can no longer be defined by how they behave.  They must be defined by their state of being.  Claiming to be a homosexual even though one has never engaged in a homosexual act is a perfect way to bring about that change.  It worked for the drunks, why won't it work for the heterophobes?
Make no mistake about it.  The militant heterophobes have successfully infiltrated the Christian church.  You can tell by the fact that they have successfully carved out a special class of sinners for themselves. Unlike all other sinners who are defined by their sinful practices, the homosexuals will be defined by what they proclaim themselves to be, regardless of how they behave.  That is a very important step and they are very patient.  It does not hurt or bother them that they are now put into a special class of "sinners."  They know that with patience, endurance and careful use of irrational thought it will not be long before they can remove the "sinner" part of that expression and become just be a privileged class in the Church.  What a sad day that will be.

Rules For Dealing With The Cops

Can we all admit it?  The relationship between the police and the citizens in the Socialist Democracy of Amerika has changed dramatically.  In the old days the constable on patrol was a friendly fellow who would drop into your restaurant for a cup of coffee and talk with the kids in the street as they were on their way to school.  He would carry a billy-club which he rarely, if ever, actually used.  Most people were on a first name basis with him.  Most importantly, he was skilled at diffusing potentially dangerous situations thus never allowing those situations to escalate to the point where deadly force might be required.  The relationship between those cops and the citizens they patrolled was generally congenial and evidenced mutual respect.  Those old-style cops had common sense and knew how to use it.  My how things have changed.
Many cops today are ex-military people who are just itching for some action.  They miss the shooting and killing they had been doing just months before joining the police force.  They miss the thrill of the fight.  They will do anything to experience it again.  Those who are not recruited from the military are the by-product of police academies that are run just like the military.  New recruits are taught to behave like soldiers and to see the citizens they are walking among as the enemy.  Rather than seeing the citizens as those who pay their salaries and who's rights they are to defend, they see the citizens as potential threatening situations where the use of deadly force is most likely going to be required.  Cops are then taught that there is nothing more important than their own personal safety.  They are taught that protecting their own lives is the first priority in all confrontations.  They are also taught that the great majority of the people they will confront want to do them bodily harm. Every word, every movement, every action of the unarmed citizen needs to be perceived as a potential threat to their safety and well being.  All of this teaching creates the perfect environment for police brutality.  Needless to say, we have plenty of police brutality.
Google "police brutality" and see what comes up.  Go here to read about how a squadron of Miami cops killed two unarmed robbery suspects by shooting their disabled car, while they were in it and attempting to surrender, an amazing 377 times.  Go here to see the video of cops murdering an unarmed man living in the mountains near Albuquerque, NM.  Go here to read the amazing story of the Deming (NM) police torturing a man for rolling through a Stop sign.  Go here to read the account of the 1985 Supreme Court ruling that permits the police to shoot unarmed suspects as they are fleeing from them if they believe the fleeing suspect presents a danger to themselves or others.  Given the fact that the cops perceive every single situation they encounter as being dangerous to their well being it is not hard to see how the Supreme Court ruling essentially gives the cops a license to kill pretty much anyone they want to.  Go here to read how a woman was pulled over by the Border Patrol and terrorized for the sheer sadistic pleasure of doing so.  I could go on and on but I won't.  I think you get the point.  Things have changed.  This isn't Mayberry and the armor-clad, jack-booted thug approaching your car with his gun drawn is no longer your friend.  Therefore, in the spirit of free advice, I present to you my rules for dealing with the cops:
  1. All cops shall be address as "sir" at all times.  It does not matter that the kid who just pulled you over is rosy-cheeked and incapable of shaving.  He wears a government costume and carries a gun.  He can kill you if he feels threatened.  Thou shalt call him, or her, "sir" at all times.
  2. When speaking with the cops you shall show proper deference. That means you will never challenge or question anything they say, no matter how wrong or preposterous it might be.  Remember this, the officer is always right.  Speak only when spoken to.  When you speak, look down.  Do not make eye contact with a cop as this will be perceived as a threatening action and you are likely to be shot and possibly killed for doing so.
  3. Do not even think about attempting to record the event.  If the cop does not find out about your recording it will be inadmissible in a court of law.  If the cop does find out about your recording of the event the emotional situation will rapidly deteriorate.  The cop will become belligerent and threatening.  You are in big trouble.  The thug might perceive that he is being threatened and you will soon be shot.
  4. Your goal in any confrontation with the police shall be a simple one...to escape alive and unharmed.  The goal of the cops in those same situations is a simple one....to intimidate, oppress and harass you into submission.  It does not take a brain surgeon to realize that the best way to avoid harm to your person and property is to be as submissive as possible.  
  5. Never make any quick movements.  Those are perceived as threatening.  Never say anything in a loud voice.  That is perceived as threatening.  In fact, don't do anything unless you are responding to a direct order from the cop.  Then, respond immediately and without making eye contact.
  6. When the cops kill your dog because they felt threatened by it, keep your mouth shut.  If you are unable to hold back the tears that stream from your eyes at least try to not let the cops see them.  Tears to cops are like blood in the water to a shark.  Your goal needs to be pure stoicism at all times.  You cannot show any weakness.  You cannot show any power.  You cannot show anything.  Otherwise you will only make things worse. 
  7. If you find yourself being arrested even after following the above principles I am so sorry.  There is nothing you can do but bear it.  Keep telling yourself that it will have to end sometime.  The torture may go on for a day or so but it will eventually have to end.  Some believe you should repeatedly state that "I do not consent to any searches" and "I want a lawyer" but I don't believe that will help.  In fact, I think that will make the situation worse as it will indicate to your captors that you know your rights.  That makes them very mad.  So I suggest you try to withdraw in your mind to a calm place.  Maybe then you will not feel the body cavity searches and the slaps to the face quite so intensely.
 The basic principle is this...avoid the cops at all costs.  Never call them to your home.  If you have an intruder, deal with him yourself.  There are way too many examples of the homeowners being shot by the cops when they come running through the door, guns a blazing, looking for someone to kill.  Don't teach your children to trust the cops.  That is setting them up for future abuse, torture and incarceration.  In fact, neither you nor your children should ever trust anyone wearing a government costume.  They are not there to help you.  They are there to enforce the burgeoning body of government laws and rules, all of which are designed to strip you of your freedom and make you subservient to the state.  If you choose to fight back you will lose.  You will be shot.  So do your best to become invisible.  And that is my best advice for dealing with the cops.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Racism/Sexism Cost Denver Taxpayers Millions

Most of you are probably not aware of the fact that the City of Denver is constructing a huge hotel complex at Denver International Airport (DIA).  When DIA was first constructed many critics, including me, accused it of being a classic government boondoggle.  To the surprise of just about everyone and despite construction delays and cost overruns, DIA quickly showed a profit.  Emboldened by this spate of profitability, Denver decided to double down and build a hotel complex immediately adjacent to the terminal.  Denver politicians assured Denver taxpayers it would be a good deal.  Let's think about that for a moment, shall we?
The budget for the entire project was originally slated to be ~ $500 million.  As of today the cost for the entire project is going to be at least $700 million.  Budget planners have blamed the "economic recovery" for the cost overruns.  Apparently when they initially projected the costs for the project they did so using numbers garnered from the bottom of the Great Recession.  Why would they do something so stupid?  How could the politicians who approved this project believe that future costs would be equal to what they were at the bottom of a recession?  Why are those responsible for those cost projections still in office?  Could you imagine anyone else being so dumb?  Who would be so crazy as to estimate the costs for a future building project based upon the lowest price for materials and labor over the past twenty years?  And yet that is what the Denver budget planners did.  As a result, the project is over time and over budget.  But bad cost projections are not the only reasons for the cost overruns.
The Sunday Denver Post featured a front page article on a "mechanical construction" project at DIA.  If Denver politicians really cared about the taxpayers of Denver they would have awarded construction projects at DIA to the lowest bidding company that was competent and capable of completing the work.  That, of course, is not how things work in the political world.  When politicians are spending money that is not theirs they have many other incentives coming into play.  Most significant among those incentives is the process of awarding contracts in such a way as to garner future votes when election time comes around.  That means that no cost is too high if the end result is reelection.  This particular construction contract is a perfect illustration of how political sexism and racism is going to end up costing Denver taxpayers millions of dollars.
Here is, in part, what the Denver Post had to say about the project:
"It was touted as the biggest minority-owned business contract in Denver history.  Burgess Services announced in January that it had been awarded a $39.6 million mechanical construction job on Denver International Airport's showcase hotel and transit center project.  Its president, Denise Burgess, smiling in her hard hat, had stood arm in arm with Denver Mayor Michael Hancock at the construction site when the project launched.  Burgess, who is black, promised to pay this groundbreaking award forward, hiring other minority and women owned business whenever possible."  So there you have it.  Construction contracts are awarded to various companies based upon the fact that they have black female presidents.  What that has to do with doing a good job and completing the project in the least possible time for the lowest possible price was not explained.  All that matters is that black voters and female voters see how much the current politicians care for them.  Of course they expect a vote as payback in the future.
The story went on to say, "Burgess Services is not equipped to carry out a mechanical project.  It subcontracts the construction work to other companies....In reality, minority and woman owned businesses are doing only a fraction of the work on the Burgess contract."  This is where it gets really interesting.  The article included a chart showing how the $40 million was divided up among the various subcontractors.  $23 million was immediately subcontracted to RK Mechanical, which is not minority or female owned but which theoretically can get the job done.  In fact, only $6 million of the $40 million contract ended up being subbed to minority or female owned companies.  But the story gets even more interesting.
According to the story, "...in its May 2012 proposal for the contract, Burgess Services stated that 'fabrication will be performed at our headquarters manufacturing facility' in Denver."  But Burgess owns a "construction management company", not a construction company.  She won the DIA contract in her alleged capacity as a construction company but she has no ability whatsoever to fulfill the terms of that contract proposal.  She has no "manufacturing facility" and she has no ability to fabricate anything...except perhaps lies.
When confronted with this obvious case of fraud Ms. Burgess responded by saying, "You know, that's kind of a typo."  If that is true, it has to be the largest typo in the history of the world  In fact, her "typo" goes on for an entire fraudulent sentence.  Oh well, she is black and she is a woman...maybe she didn't understand what she was doing.  (Wow! I sure sound like a racist sexist, don't I?)  What is Burgess Services going to be paid for doing nothing more than coordinating the construction project, something the city planners could have done themselves for free?   A cool $3.3 million.  Not bad pay for unnecessary work that could have been done by someone else for free. 
Why do government projects inevitably turn into government boondoggles?  Because politicians have no incentive to be careful with taxpayer dollars.  They see taxpayer funds as unlimited.  They also see the allocation of those taxpayer dollars as an opportunity to feather their own political nests.  It is not hard for me to imagine that Denver Mayor Hancock already has commissioned the construction of a huge sign to be placed upon the top of the new hotel proclaiming it to be the "Hancock Hotel."  That will be paid for by the taxpayers as well.  He will probably assign the contract to a company owned by a black woman who will immediately sub it out to a while male owned company that actually knows how to do the work.  And that is how politically sponsored racism and sexism is going to cost Denver taxpayers millions of dollars.