Recently in 1st Amendment Category

It's here, for anyone interested. I did it on the fly while visiting a local library during my lunch break last Wednesday, and I wasn't entirely sure how it turned out. As my wife warns me, it's dangerous to do things on the fly.

It's a good thing she doesn't know how much I do that way.

But the evidence is conclusive of the utter corruption of the corrupt media in reporting this incident. Some things are so obvious it's difficult to notice. And I don't know how Zimmerman would be able to receive a fair trial if it came to that.
Whether or not Sarah Palin decides to run for president the one thing I have to say she's got going for her is her disdain for the traditional courtship of the media. Even the liberal LA Times recognizes the fact and points out that it may actually work for her.

There is nothing the U.S. media wants more than something it thinks it can't have. Hence the power of news leaks that manipulate the thrust of their initial presentation. Hard-to-get is a rigid rule of human behavior. Ask any teenage boy or girl.

And there are few things more sweet to Palin and her fervent supporters cheering their TV sets this week than the image of a hungry know-it-all "lamestream media" caravan of 15 or more vehicles traipsing along behind her red-white-and-blue bus enroute to they-know-not-where to do they-know-not-what.

If nothing else this "I don't care what you want" attitude of Palin's towards the media is driving them to distraction and frustrating them to no end. Her refusal to play by their rules has them unable to function in their usual manner and they're confused (and perhaps not a little frightened) by the prospect that she will be but the first to find that she really doesn't need them to get her message out. She can bypass their "helpful" filtering and make appeals directly to the public without the media interpreting her utterances into something that in no way resembles what it she actually said (as compared to what they want her to have said). They will be relegated to actually reporting the news rather than creating it or disguising their not unbiased opinions as 'news'.

To read some of those commenting on the Times piece, Palin should be held responsible for the extra work the media will have to do and the higher risk they'll be taking to keep up with her. That's right, the higher risk.

She's an irresponsible, egotistical woman who gives no thought as to how she could be endangering others through her actions. The article mentions the media caravan, but doesn't talk about the chaos created, as in Philadelphia, when the reporters don't know where she's going to show up and run madly about trying to find her. If someone gets hurt, guess who's going to deny she's responsible for any of it and cast aspersions on anyone who tries to say she is--just as she did when Kathy Gifford was shot. Such behavior would not be entirely surprising from an immature, aspiring Hollywood star; it is disturbing from someone who makes any pretense of aspiring to a responsible position.

This California asshat has it exactly backwards. How is it she can in any way be held responsible for the actions of what are, to all intents and purposes, paparazzi? If she chooses not to clue them in as to her plans, it's her right to do so. The poor endangered media types don't have to follow her around, do they?

Too many of the other asshats who commented wondered why the media bothers giving Palin any coverage, and then they complain when the media has a more difficult time covering Palin. So I have to ask this question: Which one is it you really want - media coverage to report her every gaffe, real or perceived, or for the media to ignore her entirely? It has to be one or the other. You can't have both.

Of course we really know the answer to that question, don't we? Without Palin, the Left would have no one to complain about or to excoriate. I guess it must make them feel better to denigrate someone who refuses to fill the role they have decided she must play. Too bad for them.

And what would happen if she decides to run in 2012 and again chooses her own way of doing things without bothering to ask the media for their input, such as it is? I expect heads would explode in newsrooms around the country and the all-so-learned talking heads would be struck dumb by her unwillingness to consult with them.

One can only hope.
Usually you'll hear the Left disparage Fox News, calling it nothing more than a mouthpiece for the Right. Some leftist organizations have actually called for its destruction, and one, Media Matters For America (MMFA), is actively working to silence it.

But from the Left comes a voice defending Fox News and condemning MMFA for its unconstitutional and un-American actions.

Norman Horowitz writes:

Many take the position that if you do not approve of what someone's press is publishing that it is acceptable to somehow destroy the offending press.

In the "pretend spirit" of free speech Media Matters for America (MMFA) wants to stifle the free press rights of Fox News. MMFA is not at all pleased with Fox News and has chosen to find a way to stop Fox News from publishing.

It is both sad and objectionable that MMFA objects to press freedom.

Horowitz includes the letter from MMFA CEO Matt Butler, outlining MMFA's plans to silence Fox News by going after the advertisers supporting it. It almost sounds like mob tactics from past, inducing businesses to stop doing business with someone who has fallen out of favor with the mob bosses.

Why is the Left always falls back on tactics that are right out of the Mobster's Handbook if they feel they can't win support of the public based upon the merits of their arguments? Could it be because they realize they are losing public support for their morally and financially bankrupt political ideology and feel they must "Do Something!!" in order to prove their way is the right way, even though it isn't? It certainly seems that way to me.

Horowitz continues:

Media Matters of course can take issue with what Fox News promulgates and can publish opposing opinions of its own.

If you don't approve of it don't watch it, read it, or listen to it. Suggest that your friends and family might choose to do the same and that is fine.

But MMFA has crossed a line by trying to stifle a voice of which they don't approve. They suggest, in a manner of speaking, that the public destroy the Fox presses by removing the financial support of Fox News that comes from Madison Avenue.

What a horrid position it is for MMFA to take.

We all need to support the right to publish commentators such as Glenn Beck and many others at Fox News. I personally find what they are spewing noxious. But that's the point. As distasteful as it might be, we all need to defend speech we don't agree with as long as it's not inciting people to riot and things of that nature.

If MMFA doesn't like much of what is said on Fox News, they can say so, and they can say it quite LOUDLY.

But their shouting emits a foul odor when they are advocating the suppression of views expressed on Fox News along with the suppression of Fox News itself.

And wouldn't they scream loudly if someone were to try the same tactics against MMFA? Of course they would. But somehow only the anointed are allowed to advocate silencing dissent. And some of them would recommend using any means necessary to do so, just as has been done so many times over the past 100 years or so in places like the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, China, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Venezuela, and a host of other nations around the world.

It seems they would like to add the United States to that list. But then far too many statists like the extreme Left in this country would see that as a Progressive paradise.

At least one "raging liberal" sees the danger in that.

Kudos to Norman Horowitz.
If nothing else, this action at Columbia University shows the rest of the nation what kind of scumbags are attending that bastion of hate-mongering leftist ideology.

Never mind the veteran they were jeering is just like the others that have gone before him and made it possible for these brainwashed, indoctrinated, self-important anti-American 'students' to express their disdain.
Sikhs in public schools are allowed, as students, to carry their traditional knifes. The object in question is a ceremonial dagger called a kirpan. HT. 

Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff

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An Austrian mother being charged for a Hate Crime for telling the truth about Islam. And she certainly is in a position to know. I wish I were making this up.
I have little doubt everyone thinks those radar trailers the various police and sheriff's departments set up along the roads to remind us of our speed are annoying. Sometimes they're surprising, meaning they make us realize we're going faster than we thought we were.

But as annoying as they can be, they're basically harmless. The police don't use them to issue tickets. They're there just to let us know how fast we're going along the stretches of road where they're set up.

Apparently someone here in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire really doesn't like them. At all.

The Laconia [NH] Police Department itself has become a crime statistic after someone recently fired a bullet into the agency's radar trailer, disabling it and forcing expensive repairs.

When Sgt. Gary Hubbard and Off. John Howe opened up the display, they found the flattened remains of a .22-caliber bullet that Clarke believes was fired from a moving vehicle. The bullet caused about $1,000 worth of damage to the display, he said, and nearly missed the actual radar unit which, had it been hit, would have cost a like sum to replace.

Someone has some serious anger issues to deal with.
If we need even more proof the Obama Administration really doesn't care very much for the US Constitution, particularly the First Amendment, all we have to do is listen to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and her declaration that any health insurer speaking about rate increases due to the provisions of ObamaCare will be denied access to the insurance exchanges under ObamaCare.

"There will be zero tolerance for this type of misinformation and unjustified rate increases."

That sounds like a stern headmistress dressing down some sophomores who have been misbehaving. But it's actually from a letter sent Thursday from Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to Karen Ignagni, president of America's Health Insurance Plans -- the chief lobbyist for private health insurance companies.

Sebelius objects to claims by health insurers that they are raising premiums because of increased costs imposed by the Obamacare law passed by Congress last March.

So if the insurance companies speak out they will be denied access to the market as punishment for exercising their First Amendment rights? of her. She sounds a bit like Al Capone: "Gee, that's a nice health insurance company you've got there. It would be a shame if something bad were to happen to it...."

Sebelius must be reading from Nancy Pelosi's version of the Constitution. You know the one where the Bill of Rights exists only to bolster the power of the federal government? The same one where the only rights the citizens have are those that she, Harry Reid, Barack Obama, and the rest of the Regressives allow.

Maybe it's time for Sebelius to go back to school and study her history, and particularly the Constitution, the Federalist Papers, and a whole host of other tomes that explain why what she said is un-American at its core.
While I have not commented upon the controversy in New York about the Ground Zero center, it isn't because I don't have any to offer. Quite the contrary. It's only that nothing really spurred me to put words onto the 'net. That has changed.

An occasional commenter here posted her viewpoints about the Ground Zero mosque and I felt compelled to answer her. Paulina and I rarely see eye to eye on anything, but I respect her opinions because, quite frankly, she tends to think things through before writing about them. There are times when she lets emotion override logic, but it occurs rarely (that I've seen). I think this is one of those times.

When I first heard about the "Ground Zero Mosque" a few weeks back, all the controversy made me think there was a plan to build a Hagia Sophia type structure right where the trade center stood. Turns out it's some sort of community center (gym, swimming pool, theater and a mosque) two blocks away from ground zero, planned by a Sufi (read: peaceful, Buddhist-like) Imam (Feisal Abdul Rauf, or whatever). Never mind that there is already a mosque four blocks away and that lower Manhattan was originally a very muslim community (back in the late 19th century it was called Little Syria) - why is it that the very people who like to get all outraged on behalf of the constitution are forgetting it's very first amendment?

I know why, of course. It's because most Americans and certainly most conservatives, like to think of America as a christian nation. They like to throw their bible into political arguments (gay marriage? no way - it's an abomination!). More importantly, they have found themselves a nice little enemy in Islam. What used to be a multifaceted religion practiced by nearly a third of the world's population, is now equated with intolerant governments and terrorism. The idea that Islam is a violent religion is now somehow taken as a fact. And this I also understand. We all need an "other" to hate or put down. I myself have an "other" in conservatives and all religious fanatics, christian and muslim alike. Still, it is the intolerance and bigotry that piss me off the most when it comes to my "others" and so I've decided that it would be an excellent idea to build and actually mosque, with minarets and all, right there next to where the trade center stood, to symbolize the hope for tolerance and peace.

So the reason for the opposition is because we're all Muslim-hating, intolerant conservativs, and worse, Christians? Yeah. Right.

Here was my comment to her post:

We're told we must be tolerant of other beliefs, primarily Islam. However the reverse isn't true, as seen every day by the likes of the media, academia, the government, and the multi-culti proselytizers. Those of us of Judeo-Christian beliefs must not be tolerated because, after all, It's-All-Our-Fault. The Muslim community in New York has shown great insensitivity to the feelings and beliefs of those who lost loved ones on That Terrible Day. It is they who are showing intolerance, not those protesting against something they see as a slap in the face.

The argument has been made in other places that there are already churches, strip joints, and an OTP parlor surrounding Ground Zero, so why should building a mosque create such a controversy? It's simple, really. They were already there on That Terrible Day. Frankly, if the mosque had also been there on That Terrible Day, I doubt there would be nearly as much opposition to it. There might even have been none. But that isn't the case here.

Whether the intentions of those wanting to build the new community center are good or otherwise, I believe they could have handled it differently which might have lessened the opposition to it. Instead, they sprang it on the people of New York with little or no notice, something they should not have done. It showed insensitivity. Did they really expect any different response under those circumstances?
Thursday I attended one of the hundreds of TEA party protests held around the nation. Turnout was around 1000, which was similar to last year's Tax Day TEA Party protest.

Of the myriad of speakers at the protest, only one was a sitting member of the House of Representatives and he was visiting from Michigan. A number of Congressional hopefuls were there, but none spoke, preferring to press the flesh and speak one-on-one with TEA party supporters. Not surprisingly, only GOP candidates showed up even though invitations were extended to candidates from all parties.

Three of the more inspiring speakers included former US Senator Gordon Humphrey (R-NH), Thom Thomson - son of the late New Hampshire governor Meldrim Thomson, and former New Hampshire Senator George Lovejoy.

Senator Humphrey related his experiences of serving in the Senate for two terms. (He promised when he was elected that he'd only serve two terms, then come home. He kept his promise.) The one thing he said that stuck in my mind was his comparison of Congress to "a pit of vipers." He also warned that even those with the best of intentions when they arrive in Washington are eventually seduced by the power their office confers. It doesn't happen quickly, but it does happen, which is why he has supported term limits. He also led the call to "Throw the bums OUT!", something the crowd quickly picked up and chanted with increasing volume. Humphrey said we shouldn't discriminate as there were plenty of Republican bums deserving to be thrown out as much as their Democrat colleagues.

Both Thom Thomson and Senator Lovejoy spoke about the fiscal problems visited upon the people of New Hampshire by both the legislature and the governor, with legislative Democrats willing to spend money the state doesn't have, implementing tax hikes that hit the people most affected by the recession, and attempting to 'appropriate' private funds from a medical malpractice fund in an effort to fund the runaway budget. The governor also failed to protect the taxpayers in the state by refusing to use his veto pen to stop the 30% increase in state spending over the past 2 budgets.

While other TEA party protests drew some number of infiltrators/agitators, the Manchester protest drew only one 'visitor' from the New Hampshire Democrat Party, and he pretty much just watched the activities.

All in all it was a great gathering with appreciative crowd all sharing the same message: "We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it any more!"
I have noticed that whenever I used the word "Mankind" in an article, it emerges in the printed version, without my permission, as "Humankind," a word I despise as both ugly and sanctimonious.
Read on.

Speech only needs to be protected when it is in fact unpopular. I think we've got the Left in full-throttle attack on the First Amendment. But it appears an act of desperation.

How can ideas be prevented from dissemination in the age of the Internet? But maybe something more sinister is happening, as John Derbyshire writes of the shutting down of the American Renaissance conference, "How Liberty Dies."

It is a shameful thing that the AR conference was shut down -- an ominous thing too, in that this is the first time it's happened. We may be losing our freedoms of speech and association, as they have in Britain and Europe. So much for American exceptionalism.
The Left has certainly been emboldened. Seeing those creatures wearing that Palestinian towel is disgusting. And for a guy the Southern Poverty Law Center must consider a dangerous white supremacist, Jared Taylor makes an awful lot of sense to me, esp. towards the end of the interview.

I'm one of those whites who could have settled and worked in Washington, DC, or Detroit, Michigan--where homes prices are compellingly low--both places I have indeed lived, but for certain unstated reasons prefer New Hampshire north of Concord. We think it but we're not allowed to say it.

Heresy, the word Taylor uses, fits.

POSTSCRIPT: Before the disgrace at Ottawa shutting down Coulter was the warm-up in Halifax shutting down Taylor. Don't give in to these goons. Lesson of history: weakness begets more weakness.
Perhaps we have a lack of tolerance for traditional American expressions of belief (Christianity) or criticism of political figures, something long understood to be protected speech by the magnificent First Amendment.

Here are a few examples of a decline of tolerance as traditionally understood: sending a Taunton, Mass., second-grade boy home for a psychiatric evaluation (at parents' expense) for drawing a stick figure Jesus over a cross, telling a third-grade girl in New Jersey to put away the Bible during quiet time free reading, and Florida congressional representative Alan Grayson asking Attorney General Holder to imprison a man for five years who runs a website critical of Grayson.

I wish I were making these up. I'm sure the Right has tried to squelch speech too, as the wonderful Nat Hentoff has written...but it's the Left that's in control of the schools and the movies. So the bien pensants are busy deciding what's legitimate to say, think, or do. And they're not patriotic Christians, that's for sure. Defining tolerance down, as the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan may have said.

I hate political correctness, which has been described by Camile Paglia as Stalinist, and I recently came across its first use--in 1945 in, where else, the Soviet Union's police state. Reading the book The Fall of Berlin 1945 by Anthony Beever (p. 34, hardcover), one can read the following:

The fears of army political departments were confirmed by reports from NKVD (communist secret police) postal censors, who underlined negative comments in blue and positive comments in red. The NKVD drastically increased the censorship of letters home [from Soviet army guys invading Germany], hoping to control the way soldiers described the style of living or ordinary Germans and the 'politically incorrect conclusions' (emphasis mine) formed as a result. The NKVD was also horrified to find that soldiers were sending German postcards home.
HT: The Helen Glover Show (Rhode Island talk show host)
A man fired from a Massachusetts department store for his tentatively spoken backing of traditional marriage? You can see him explain it himself. Um, wow.

HT: What's Wrong with the World
I wrote about an issue similar to this recently when a NH cop received a suspension because of his outspoken opinion against the drug war.

I think it goes hand-in-hand: the loss of economic freedoms with our personal ones as espoused in the First Amendment. Can the Second be far behind?
This Union Leader story about a police officer opposed to the law he is required to enforce, the drug prohibition of certain narcotics, raises the specter of arbitrary violation of a person's First Amendment prerogatives.

First off, it's certainly possible for the officer in question to still do his work. Many soldiers opposed what they were doing and still did it effectively in war.

Second, to demonstrate the arbitrariness of it, consider this thought experiment: a Muslim officer is an outspoken proponent of polygamy and is also outspoken against the current age of consent. What is it, eighteen in NH? In that he would presumably have the sanction of his religion as Muhammad, peace be upon him, married up to four women, including a six-year-old whom he consummated the marriage to her three years later.

Paging ACLU. Don't cops enforce those laws too? I think we've got a can of worms.

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