Take that!

Well…it’s a start. What am I talking about? A US Appeals Court is limited the Patriot Act. Specifically, limiting the NSA authority to collect telephone data without a warrant. No more mass collection.

Top federal court rules against NSA’s phone records program

By Julian Hattem05/07/15 09:25 AM EDT

A federal court has decided that the National Security Agency’s (NSA) bulk, warrantless collection of millions of Americans’ phone records is illegal.

The sweeping decision from the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday represents a major court victory for opponents of the NSA, and comes just as Congress begins a fight over whether to renew the underlying law used to justify the program.  

That program “exceeds the scope of what Congress has authorized,” Judge Gerard Lynch wrote on behalf of the three-judge panel.

The law “cannot be interpreted in a way that defies any meaningful limit,” he added.

The key section of the Patriot Act that ‘allows’ the government to collection information has been interpreted too broadly according to the bill’s author, Rep, Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.). It is §215 that is flawed and the section that the 2nd Appellate Court is limiting.

But, the win in court may be moot. Despite efforts by the White House, the NSA and statists in Congress, §215 is due to expire within a month.

***

Chris Cuomo, son of the late New York Governor Mario Cuomo, displayed his stupidity on Twitter. His liberal buddies piled on. Not to defend him, but to ridicule him. It couldn’t happen to a better, ‘stuck on stupid’ liberal.

CNN’s Chris Cuomo gets Twitter-spanked after boneheaded First Amendment gaffe

His claim that the “fighting words” exception applies to hate speech made for “fighting words” on Twitter

It is increasingly difficult for those who identify on the left and right to find anything they agree upon, but this morning CNN anchor and law school graduate Chris Cuomo provided those across the political spectrum with some common ground.

Cuomo was hosting a Twitter conversation about the constitutionality of hate speech and wrote:

First Amendment experts, self-styled and actual and of all political stripes, jumped in to inform him of his wrongness:

Such a painfully dumb tweet! @ChrisCuomo: can you point to where this free speech “exception” is in US Constitution? https://twitter.com/ChrisCuomo/status/595934009764487168 

Ass. You are a disgrace to Fordham Law School, which only admitted you because of your famous father. https://twitter.com/ChrisCuomo/status/595934009764487168 

it doesn’t. hate speech is excluded from protection. dont just say you love the constitution…read it https://twitter.com/TweetBrettMac/status/595931074477305856 

@ChrisCuomo hey, long time listener first time caller, looking for this in this constitution you speak of. Got a link?

it doesn’t. hate speech is excluded from protection. dont just say you love the constitution…read it https://twitter.com/TweetBrettMac/status/595931074477305856 

@ChrisCuomo I did read the First Amendment, and still can’t find the “hate speech” exception to free speech. Can you point it out for us?

Morning Twitter Update, 5.6.15: Chris Cuomo is getting the fighting words doctrine and First Amendment hilariously wrong.

Chris Cuomo phonically learned the dit-dit of law but has no basic understanding of law and rights. That’s why all the dumb.

Cuomo replied:

@ChrisCuomo I did read the First Amendment, and still can’t find the “hate speech” exception to free speech. Can you point it out for us?

@EdMorrissey I will keep saying one word: chaplinsky

That word, “chaplinsky,” refers to Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, in which the Supreme Court decided that some speech — like “fighting words,” or other statements that incite violence — aren’t protected by the First Amendment. Unfortunately for Cuomo:

FYI, the case @ChrisCuomo keeps citing (a) has been subsequently so gutted it’s basically a dead letter & (b) IS NOT ABOUT HATE SPEECH.

And you will still be entirely wrong. ReTweet: @ChrisCuomo @EdMorrissey I will keep saying one word: chaplinsky

@EdMorrissey So, basically, @ChrisCuomo‘s expert fact-based legal opinion is a single word chanted repeatedly like a talisman against evil?

I love how Cuomo screams READ THE CONSTITUTION then cites case law (incorrectly).

Also, of course, @ChrisCuomo completely overlooks the face-to-face requirement as he alleges that fighting words doctrine somehow applies.

As a followup to Cuomo’s use of, “Chaplinski,” it has largely been reversed. You can follow the link above to see how limited it was. The limitation with ‘Chaplinski’ is that it requires a face-to-face confrontation. None of those requirements are met contrary to Cuomo’s assertions.
Not even über-liberal Salon can stomach Cuomo’s idiotcy.

Thursday’s Thoughts

The FCC is about to vote on their seizure of the internet. There are five Commissioners, three dems and two ‘pubs. The new ruling was authored in the White House and handed to the democrat FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler to ram it through. The vote is expected to be along party lines. I first wrote about the nationalization of the internet earlier this month.

The title of the Rule-Making is a lie. It’s not about internet neutrality. It’s about government control of the means, infrastructure and content of the internet. If it is passed, nothing good will come of it and internet access costs WILL go up.

***

Did you hear that the DoJ had decided not to charge George Zimmerman in the Travon Martin case? The DoJ said there was insufficient evidence for any civil rights violation. What it meant was that the federal persecution of Zimmerman was finally over. Oh, the media did their part accusing Zimmerman of wife beating, girlfriend beating and of being a drunk. What they failed to tell you was that the two women admitted Zimmerman had done nothing. Their claims were lies.

An article appeared in the American Thinker with some thoughts on the actions of the DoJ, none of them complimentary.

Finally Cleared, Zimmerman Should Sue the DOJ

By Jack Cashill,  February 26, 2015

“In all criminal prosecutions,” reads the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, “the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial.”  In its dangling of George Zimmerman over the pit of judicial hell for the last three years, the Obama Department of Justice (DOJ) violated the spirit of that amendment for no better reason than to pacify the Democrats’ increasingly bloodthirsty base.

Finally, on Tuesday of this week, the DOJ announced that it had found insufficient evidence to pursue federal criminal civil rights charges against Zimmerman.  A White House so seemingly appalled by torture had no qualms about torturing Zimmerman needlessly for nearly three years.  Indeed, within months of the February 26, 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida, the DOJ knew it had no criminal case against Zimmerman, but it kept dangling him nonetheless.

The article continues with an in-depth examination at the American Thinker website.

***

CPAC is meeting with a long list of potential GOP candidates queued to speak. Dr. Ben Carson was one of the first and he seized ‘the third rail’ of democrat politics. The UK Daily Mail reported on his speech. (Why does this story not appear in the US media?)

Ben Carson charges Democrats with taking advantage of blacks, ‘trying to keep them suppressed and cultivate their votes’

  • Prominent black GOP presidential hopeful got aggressive at the Conservative Political Action Conference
  • ‘If you’re black and you oppose the progressive agenda, and you’re pro-life, and you’re pro-family, then they don’t know what to call you’
  • ‘It really is not compassionate to pat people on the head and say, “There, there, you poor little thing, I’m going to take care of all your needs”‘
  • Carson, a world-renowned retired pediatric neurosurgeon, hopes to follow Barack Obama with a right-wing black presidency

Dr. Ben Carson grabbed the Democratic Party’s third rail with both hands Thursday morning, launching a political attack based on his complaint that liberals are ‘making people dependent’ in majority-black American inner-cities.

Race politics have been the near-exclusive domain of the Democrats since the civil-rights era of the 1960s, and Barack Obama’s successful White House bid in 2008 solidified their position.

But Carson – the most prominent black Republican in the 2016 presidential picture – told the Conservative Political Action Conference near Washington, D.C. on Thursday that the Democrats now see African-Americans’ support as an entitlement – choosing to ‘keep them suppressed and cultivate their votes.’

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/02/26/261E843200000578-2970478-image-a-1_1424963237700.jpg

‘SUPPRESSED!’: Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson told conservatives near the nation’s capitol on Thursday that Democrats are keeping black Americans dependent on government, and he’s the man to fix it. – UK Daily Mail

Scores of supporters chanting ‘Run, Ben Run!’ – almost exclusively white Americans – arrived with him.

Matthew Brown, a New York college student attending the conference, told Daily Mail Online that Carson is just hitting his stride.

‘He’s shaking people up and freaking people out,’ Brown said. ‘The days of a lily-white GOP are starting to fade, and the only people who seem to oppose this energetic and thoughtful black guy are teh Democrats. That should tell you something.’

Carson, who led off the conference, couched his talk of a presidential run and committed to little, outlining his positions ‘if I were to run – you have to say those things.’

Dr. Carson is a likable, charismatic speaker. He’s not afraid to attack the left’s sacred cows. I like much of his views…except for those of his concerning the 2nd Amendment and RKBA. He’s spoken about those views and they are soft…very soft. Still, he would be a better president than any democrat or RINO, i.e, Jeb Bush or Chris Christie.

Liberal Assault on Truth

Liberals, democrats, seem to be inheritantly incapable of being truthful. Whenever they are pressed for truth, they attack the opposition. Case in point. The City of Houston passed an ordinance that restricted the 1st Amendment and free speech. When the residents submitted a petition to abolish the ordinance, the city council claimed the petition was faulty, regardless of the 50,000 signatures. Much more than the number required for action.

In Kansas City, Missouri, the city council, at the instigation of Mayor Sly James, passed an ordinance banning Open Carry of a firearm. Their motivation was not public safety, nor a request from law enforcement. Open Carry had been legal in Kansas City for decades and had never been an issue—until Mayor Sly James made it one.

Mayor James publicly stated that the ordinance, “was intended to send a message,” to Open Carry advocates. That made the issue, not a 2nd Amendment issue, but a 1st Amendment issue, banning the free expression of those Open Carry advocates. A lawyer friend said the ordinance and the public admission of the motivation behind it, was clearly illegal, a constitutional violation. But, he said, it would take a barrel of $100 dollar bills to fight it in court and so far, no one with deep pockets has come forward to finance a lawsuit against the ordinance.

In Houston, because Houston’s churches were in opposition of the ordinance and by extension the Mayor who was a self-avowed homosexual, the Churches have been subpoenaed to submit transcripts of their sermons that opposed the ordinance. The subpoenas are a direct violation of the 1st Amendment. The churches and church leaders are banding together to fight the city of Houston on this issue.

An article appeared in the American Thinker that addresses this lack of truthfulness by liberal and democrats. With the actions of the Houston Mayor and City Council, its timing could not have been more appropriate.

Liberals Wage War on the Truth

By Trevor Thomas, October 15, 2014

When it comes to political “wars,” in spite of the meme perpetrated by most liberals, no one is more hawkish than modern liberals and the political party that they own, the Democrat Party. By and large since the 1960s, their efforts are summed up by one succinct and extremely accurate appellation: a war on the truth.

In the history of our nation, only the pro-slavery Democrats of the 19th century rival the political deception employed by today’s liberals that lead the modern Democrat Party. Support of everything from abortion, to gender perversions, homosexuality, pornography, a redefinition of marriage, wicked climate policies, and an enslaving welfare state have made today’s Democrat Party little more than a modern-day Mephistopheles. Instead of magic to lure their Faustian targets, today’s Democrats employ, among other things, bribery, class warfare, fear, greed, lust, propaganda, scientism, vengeance, and violence.

This is really unsurprising. When your politics regularly conflict with absolute truth, constant deception is required. The evidence is, of course, all around us. This is especially the case given that we are in the midst of another election season. Take note of the political ads run by Democrats. How long before we get to meet the next Julia or Pajama Boy? How many times will we get to hear about, if elected, what Democrats will do in order to give out more goodies from the government? Where will the next fraudulent statistics in the “War on Women” originate?

How much “linguistic limbo” will Democrats perform in order blandly to describe their embracing of the “right” to kill children in the womb? (Or they simply video their abortions and tell us that everything is “super great!”) What deceit will liberals use to explain or embrace the fiscal and medical disaster that is Obamacare? How many times will we get to hear the phrase “marriage equality” (knowing full well that the liberal position on marriage also “discriminates”)?

How far away will Democrats attempt to run from what they really are in order to keep themselves in power? Liberals all over the country are running from Obama and their own party in an attempt to win elections. As most who are following this election season know well, Democrats are going so far as to avoid the label “Democrat” or even admit that they voted for Obama.

In Kansas, Greg Orman is a Democrat running as an Independent. He has shamelessly refused to say with which party he would caucus if elected. “Truth makes the Devil blush,” wrote the English historian Thomas Fuller. As liberalism has created a culture that is nearly bereft of shame, today’s Democrats rarely blush, even as they mock their wheelchair-bound opponents. This usually happens only when someone becomes a political liability (as did the Democrat candidate that Orman replaced) and not because some proper moral standard has been violated.

If Orman does win, as the Wall Street Journal notes, he will most certainly owe his election to Washington Democrats. Kentucky Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes squirmed like Jim Carrey in Liar Liar as she attempted to avoid revealing to the Louisville Courier-Journal editorial board whether she voted for Obama in the last presidential election. Mary Landrieu and Michelle Nunn have played similar games as they try to win U.S. Senate seats in conservative states.

Given how far our culture has fallen morally, getting elected in the United States these days is much more challenging when you are accountable to absolute truths. As I noted earlier this year, because their moral bar is so low and easily adjusted to whatever is politically popular, liberals today generally have an easier time “playing politics” than conservatives — especially Christian conservatives.

When asked recently how to break the stalemate in the culture war that divides American conservatives and liberals, Catholic scholar George Weigel replied, “When you have a gnostic philosophy that ignores the very fabric of reality — and it is wed to a coercive state — it’s hard to know where to go.”

Ignoring “the very fabric of reality” is a frequent practice of modern liberals. Liberalism is so far removed from truth and reality that many liberals today can’t even acknowledge explicit evil when confronted with it. Ben Affleck has plenty of company among his fellow leftists when it comes to denying the rotten fruit of Islam. As the recent exchange with fellow liberal Bill Maher illustrated, many American liberals, in the name of the supreme virtue of liberalism – tolerance — will eagerly and angrily deny lesser virtues of their “faith.”

“Tolerance is a virtue of a man without convictions,” wrote G.K. Chesterton. A “man without convictions” who frequently “ignores the very fabric of reality” and who is enthusiastically “wed to a coercive state” is an apt description of modern liberals, but not perfect. In spite of what they themselves might think — lost in their fallacy that is today’s tolerance — liberals are not completely tolerant, and thus not devoid of convictions.

The convictions of modern liberalism are numerous and growing: Abortion, homosexuality, hook-ups, same-sex marriage, gender confusion, man-made global warming, universal healthcare, income redistribution, and whatever is the next perversion or deceit that will strike at the heart of biblical truths.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident” helped launch the American Revolution. If America is to remain, we need a spiritual revolution bringing us back to those truths that were once so “self-evident.”

Liberals and democrats have perverted our Constitution. We must all fight to take it back.

The Return of the Friday Follies

This has been an interesting week—interesting as in the old Chinese curse, “May you live in interesting times.” Obamacare continues to disintegrate. The GOP Establishment howls, “See! See!”, as if it vindicates their ineptness and lack of leadership opposing it and the dems in general.

More dem pols are attempting to distance themselves from Obama and Obamacare, Mark Pryor of Arkansas is an example. The twenty and thirty-somethings, those whom the libs depended upon to fund Obamacare, are rebelling. That subject, rebellion, revolution, was spoken aloud this week by Michael Cannon of the Cato Institute before a congressional judiciary committee and was supported, obliquely, by law professor Jonathan Turley, an Obama supporter.

Frankly, I, like any sane citizen, would rather not live in interesting times. Unfortunately, we, collectively the citizens of this nation, have allowed the situation to occur. And, the longer the condition is allowed to continue, the worse it will be and the more difficult it will be to correct.

If it can. That was the underlying concern espoused by Michael Cannon and Jonathan Turley.

But, I’ve already written about those subjects. Today is Friday, December 6, 2013. Tomorrow is Pearl Harbor Day. I wonder if it will be remembered by the intelligentsia in Washington…or used as another campaign event by the democrats and Obama celebrating our slide into totalitarianism and a police state, of a one-party rule like that of the old Soviet Union.

***

The GOP Establishment as acquired an ally in their war against the Tea Party and their party’s core conservatives—the US Chamber of Commerce. That alliance created a reaction. The Club for Growth has joined the fray on the side of conservatives.

New battlefront emerges in war between Republicans, tea party

By Seth McLaughlin – The Washington Times, Thursday, December 5, 2013

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s new push to get involved in Republican primaries by defending incumbents against tea party challengers could actually make it easier to unseat them, according to the head of the influential Club for Growth.

Chris Chocola, the club’s president, said the battle between the chamber, which he said advocates big business, and the rank-and-file free-market conservatives whom his group represents is well underway as Republicans try to field their candidates for the 2014 congressional elections.

The latest fight is shaping up in Idaho, where the chamber announced this week that it will run ads defending incumbent Rep. Michael K. Simpson, a Republican, against a challenge by lawyer Bryan Smith. The club has endorsed Mr. Smith.

“The chamber is pro-business and we are pro-free market, and that is the difference,” Mr. Chocola told The Washington Times. “The opposing views are not new, but there seems to be some heightened interest from the establishment types to get involved in a race like Idaho. If that heightened interest continues there might be more chances that we end up on opposite sides.”

The column continues, here, at the website.

Not only has the anti-conservative campaign of the GOP establishment drawn out national organizations such as the Club for Growth, it has also started a wave of grassroots activism and reactivation of local Tea Party groups rallying to fight that establishment from both parties.

***

Speaking the truth. It is a dangerous occurance, regardless of the validity of the statement. Here in the U. S., it can get you fired. You’d think the consequences would be worse is socialist Europe and the UK. If you thought that, you’d be wrong.

PRUDEN: British press horrified as London’s new mayor dares to proclaim the truth

By Wesley Pruden – The Washington Times, Thursday, December 5, 2013

LONDON — Free speech is good, but sometimes dangerous in practice. Saying what you think can get you sacked in America even if it’s something that most people think. Practicing free speech here in the old country is risky, too, but saying the wrong thing appears to be a misdemeanor, not yet a felony.

Boris Johnson, the irrepressible mayor of London, said some provocative things the other day to a private think tank, the Centre for Policy Studies, and political London — mostly the scribblers, anyway — has been in a tizzy since.

The mayor playfully invoked Gordon Gecko, who exists only in a movie, and his economic philosophy that “greed is good” to make the point that intelligence, ambition, inspiration and above all perspiration is the irresistible driver of prosperity for everyone. He observed that some people are smarter than others, and that the 2 percent pulls the 98 percent into the good life. To the consternation of conservatives in the government and the left-wing columnists and commentators, the mayor is still upright and walking around.

The 98 percent should be grateful to the 2 percent and not spend a lot of time cultivating resentment. “Some measure of inequality is essential for the spirit of envy,” he said, “and keeping up with the Joneses is, like greed, a valuable spur to the economy.” This reflects an unremarkable understanding of what was once called human nature before the liberals — “progressives,” they call themselves now — decided that the state can install a better nature than God did.

Mr. Johnson then went even further. He said nice things about Margaret Thatcher, who has never been forgiven in certain of these precincts for pulling Britain out of the deep coma imposed by a welfare state that had reduced an empire to “a little England.”

The mayor sometimes talks less like a mayor than a newspaper columnist, which he is as well, for The Daily Telegraph. The squeals from the left and the harrumphs from the right after his Maggie Thatcher remarks may be less about the interpretations of his message than about the folly of electing a newspaper columnist to high office. Instead of bashing the rich, he wrote the other day, “we should be offering them humble and hearty thanks. It is through their restless, concupiscent energy and sheer wealth-creating dynamism that we pay for an ever-growing proportion of public services.”

You can read more here.

***

The topic, State Nullification, is a continuing subject in many conservative circles. It appeared in a Washington Times column this week in a discussion of the overbearance and possible Constitutional violations by the government and the NSA. Nullification, contrary to popular thought, is not supported in the Constitution. It was, however, discussed in the Federalist Papers and in those papers, advocated as a possible solution to the excess of the federal government.

The Constitution and state-level resistance to NSA spying

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 – A View from the Tenth by Michael Boldin

LOS ANGELES, December 4, 2013 –  In Federalist #46, James Madison advised state-level actions in response to unconstitutional or unpopular federal acts. He wrote that a successful strategy includes a “refusal to cooperate with officers of the Union.”

As reported by US News, and linked at the top of the Drudge Report yesterday, a coalition of organizations is working to put that advice into practice in response to mass NSA surveillance programs.

The activists would like to turn off the water to the NSA’s $1.5 billion Utah Data Center in Bluffdale, Utah, and at other facilities around the country.

 Dusting off the concept of “nullification,” which historically referred to state attempts to block federal law, the coalition plans to push state laws to prohibit local authorities from cooperating with the NSA.

Draft state-level legislation called the Fourth Amendment Protection Act would – in theory – forbid local governments from providing services to federal agencies that collect electronic data from Americans without a personalized warrant.

This morning, at the TIME Swampland blog, Nate Rawlings picked up on the story as well, but opined that the “effort is sure to be stymied by federal authorities.”

Such an opinion assumes that the federal government has the Constitutional authority to stop states from opting out of federal acts and programs, or has a history of doing so.

Both assumptions are incorrect.

The Supreme Court has repeatedly supported the ability of states to opt out of federal acts and programs. The legal principle is known as the “anti-commandeering doctrine,” and says that the federal government cannot force, or “commandeer,” states to enact, administer or enforce federal regulations.

The relevant court cases are:

* 1842 Prigg: The court held that states were not required to enforce federal slavery laws.

* 1992 New York: The court held that Congress could not require states to enact specified waste disposal regulations.

* 1997 Printz: The court held that “the federal government may not compel the states to enact or administer a federal regulatory program.”

* 2012 Sebelius: The court held that states could not be required to expand Medicaid even under the threat of losing federal funding.

There is nothing in the Constitution that requires a state to help the federal government do anything.

The 4th Amendment Protection Act is a state-level bill which seeks to put the anti-commandeering doctrine into practice. The Act would thwart NSA surveillance by banning a state from participating in any program that helps or utilizes NSA surveillance.  This would include providing natural resources, information sharing, and more.

The question, then, is this: Do enough states have the will to follow the advice of the “Father of the Constitution?”

Yes, that is an interesting question.

***

And for a parting shot, let this item from FOX News be a reminder what we, the conservatives, are opposing.

OBAMA SAYS ONE-PARTY CONTROL NEEDED
President Obama told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews that Republicans are to blame for the failings of ObamaCare and other national problems. Obama said making concessions on his signature entitlement program was “out of the question.” The way forward, the president said, was to end divided government. “In our history, usually when we’ve made big progress on issues, it actually has been when one party controlled the government for a period of time,” he said. “The big strides we made in the New Deal, the big strides we made with the Great Society – those were times when you had a big majority.” — Chris Stirewalt, Digital Politics Editor, Fox News.