Archive for the ‘U. S. A.’ Category
It’s an old jab: California, the land of fruits & nuts.
And, they’re at it again.
This movement for California to secede from the United States is not the first for a state, and it’s not the first for California. However, it got a lot of press in the last few days, emphatically linked to frustration with our new President. Much of the press coverage was poorly researched, flamboyantly titled click bait that wasn’t worth the click.
But that didn’t stop a host of people on the fringe from trumpeting the boldness, the rightness, the goodness of the idea of secession.
Those people must have forgotten about the states that tried to secede over 150 years ago … and it didn’t end well for them.
I am not entertained. I am flabbergasted that people can discuss this idea with a straight face.
It’s a horrible idea for all of America. And, it will never, ever happen.
For starters, many headlines screamed that California would vote to secede later this year. That is a barefaced lie.
Here’s what actually did happen: a public initiative has been accepted by California’s Office of the Attorney General as a possible ballot proposition for the fall of 2018, if the promoters can gather the required 585,407 “wet” signatures of registered voters in California. These signatures must be done in ink … hence the term “wet” signatures. Online petitions or other social media exploits do not work for this process. Most initiatives hire paid signature gatherers for this task; the “Yes California” committee says they have thousands of volunteers (variously reported as 9,000 to 13,000+) that will gather the signatures. That low budget, volunteer strategy rarely works for such efforts. In any event, they have until July 25 to submit the signatures, at which point the state will evaluate the signatures for validity, and either certify the proposition for the fall 2018 ballot, or, more likely, end the effort at that point.
However, if the committee succeeds in gathering enough signatures, then the first vote will take place. Voters will be asked to approve a proposition that the California state constitution be revised twice: 1) to delete a reference to California being inseparable from the US, and further, 2) delete a sentence stating that the US Constitution is the supreme law of California. If that proposition passes with over 50% of the vote, THEN…
A special election is called for March 2019, when California voters will vote on whether or not they want California to secede from the United States. IF 50% of the voters do vote, and IF 55% of the voters vote YES, then the Governor is instructed to petition the UN for California to join as a member nation … and California would then seek to find a way to legally secede from the US.
And experts say there is no constitutional path to do so. In fact, experts think that the only way a state could secede is if a constitutional amendment were passed … which requires 38 states and 2/3 of the House and Senate to approve. That’s an unlikely event on any topic these days. An alternative solution would be for 2/3 of the states to hold a constitutional convention, which is something that has never happened in our history. Experts even disagree if the convention could be limited to a single topic, and many believe that any amendment could be suggested at such a constitutional convention. After the convention, IF a constitutional amendment that’s on point were passed, THEN 38 of the states would have to approve the amendment before California could Calexit.
As of today, there have been 33 constitutional amendments submitted to the states for approval. Of those, 27 have been passed. Could Calexit make it 28? I sincerely hope not.
Here’s the text of the initiative that’s been approved by the Attorney General’s office for the signature gathering effort. Note that “tens of millions of dollars of one-time state and local elections costs” would result from the approval of this proposition … and THEN we only have to amend the US Constitution for this to have any impact.
For the record, I won’t be signing, and I hope you will not as well.
REGISTERED VOTERS ONLY
(16 – 0011.)
CALIFORNIA NATIONHOOD. INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT AND STATUTE.
Repeals provision in California Constitution stating California is an inseparable part of the United States and that the United States Constitution is the supreme law of the land. Places question of whether California should become a separate country on a future ballot. Treats result of such future vote as declaration of independence from the United States if 50 percent of registered voters participate and 55 percent of those voting approve. Requires Governor to request California admission to the United Nations if voters approve independence. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: The fiscal impact of this measure is dependent on various factors, including a vote by the people on this measure, a subsequent vote on California independence, possible legal challenges, and implementation issues. Assuming that California actually became an independent nation, the state and its local governments would experience major, but unknown, budgetary impacts. This measure also would result in tens of millions of dollars of one-time state and local election costs.
And just for a little added spice … did you hear that Russia’s involved? The man behind this initiative, Louis J. Marinelli, is a US citizen that lives in Russia with his Russian wife, and works as a school teacher. He’s met with a group that allegedly has ties to the Kremlin. The Yes California website, however, emphatically states that Russia is not funding this effort.
So if you believe Russia influenced the US election, then ….
And publications as illustrious as the Wall Street Journal and the LA Times are taking this seriously?
Journalism, I mourn for thee.
Sacramento Bee: Wanna Get Away?
ABC7: California Secession Effort Approved To Gather Signatures
Wall Street Journal: Backers of California Seceding….
LA Times: Secessionists Formally Launch….
The first constitution of the USA was titled “Articles of Confederation” and was in force between 1781 and 1788. It created a single house of Congress and no executive – but for one year during this period (1781-2), John Hanson served as “President of the United States in Congress Assembled.” Hanson was followed by Elias Boudinot (1783), Thomas Mifflin (1784), Richard Henry Lee (1785), Nathan Gorman (1786), Arthur St. Clair (1787), and Cyrus Griffin (1788). George Washington was the first President under the Constitution of June 21, 1788, ratified by 1790.
John Hanson – painting attributed to John Hesselius, c. late 1760s
Portrait of Elias Boudinot by Thomas Sully
Richard Henry Lee. Portrait by Charles Willson Peale.
Nathaniel Gorman. Portrait by Charles Willson Peale.
Arthur St. Clair – painting by Charles Wilson Peale.
Robin Williams portrays the American flag in “I Love Liberty,” a two-hour television special created by Norman Lear and presented by People For the American Way.
US Flag Code
US Flag: The First
US Flag: The Second
US Flag: The Third
US Flag: Common Display Mistakes
US Flag: The Snake Flags
Tomorrow, July 4th, is the 54th birthday of the 50-star American flag.
This flag design, with 13 stripes and a star for each state in the Union, was adopted in 1818.
If you’re doing prep for a Bar-B-Q or other suitable holiday celebration, take a few minutes to brush up on your flag trivia.
And, please, treat the flag with proper respect! It is a symbol of what America stands for, and deserves to be treated as such.
US Flag: The First
US Flag: The Second
US Flag: The Third
US Flag: Common Display Mistakes
US Flag: The Snake Flags
Our Flag, from the US Government Printing Office
Flag Depot’s Excellent Timeline of The 27 US Flags
Robert G Heft, Designer of our 50 Star Flag
Gold Stripes on WWII Casket Flags?
When Jermaine Jones loosed the shot that brought USA even with Portugal, that was the call from Ian Darke: “What a cracker from him!” It was in the 64th minute, and Jones brought USA level with a 25-yard strike that the Portugal keeper didn’t even move his feet to defend.
Taylor Twellman, Darke’s color man on the broadcast, and former USA player, taunted Portugal’s keeper with his comment: “Pick it out of the back of the net, Beto, it’s 1-1.”
4th ranked in the world, Portugal was favored to make a long run in the World Cup tournament.
13th ranked in the world, USA had high hopes … but they were in the “Group Of Death.” The group is Germany, Ghana, Portugal and USA. All of these teams are dangerous. As Portugal was about to learn.
In the 81st minute, here’s Darke’s call: “Yedlin, Michael Bradley, Zusi .. and then Dempsey. Is he onside? HE IS. It’s 2-1 to the US!” Clint Dempsey, who plays professional soccer for the Seattle Sounders, put the crossing pass into the net … playing it off his hip. As Darke said, “Captain Marvel, again.”
Alas, the lead would not endure. Soccer’s so-called world player of the year (formally, the recipient of the 2013 FIFA Ballon d’Or), Cristiano Ronaldo, is the lead player for Portugal. He did a perfect pass in the 5th minute of added time, and Portugal’s Varela headed it into the US net. Final score: 2-2.
So, all four teams in the Group of Death are still alive. USA advances to the round of 16 with a win or draw when they play Germany on Thursday, 6/26, at 9am EDT. Join me in rooting them on, won’t you?
Deadspin: What Has To Happen….
“In this temple, as in the hearts of the people for whom he saved the Union, the memory of Abraham Lincoln is enshrined forever.” Beneath these words, the 16th President of the United States sits immortalized in marble as an enduring symbol of unity, strength, and wisdom.
It was on this date in 1922, that the Lincoln Memorial was dedicated. Photo: Andrew S. Geraci. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior, 5/30/14.
Mike Rowe has had some dirty jobs, but he’s also a Distinguished Eagle Scout.
Love this story about Mike Rowe, host of “Dirty Jobs” … and an Eagle Scout.
Mike was called to testify before Congress about job skills in today’s marketplace. One of the Congressmen asked if he would ever do a show about the job of a Congressman.
Mike’s response, proving he’s got skills of his own:
With respect, some jobs are just too hideous to contemplate.
The Blaze: Testifying…
There are so many things to love about this photograph!
From a hyperbolic op-ed piece on NYTimes.com:
We should be in a rage over the widespread attempts to disenfranchise voters, from the gutting of the Voting Rights Act to the rise of the Voter ID movement — a near-naked attempt by conservatives to diminish the number of Democratic voters.
And as over-the-top as this rhetoric is, come to find out the left side of the political spectrum is just getting warmed up. Here’s more inflammatory rhetoric from our Vice President, speaking in February:
… Vice President Joe Biden blamed “hatred” as the motivating force behind voter identification laws in states such as North Carolina, Alabama, and Texas. Biden wants new laws to block “former slave holding states in the south” from discrimination against blacks and other minorities.
Biden, speaking at a reception at the Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C., in celebration of African-American History Month, said that, “These guys never go away. Hatred never, never goes away. The zealotry of those who wish to limit the franchise cannot be smothered by reason.”
So, according to Vice President Biden, I’m a hater. Because I wish to limit the franchise of voting, I must hate people. It’s true that I grew up in a former slave-holding state, so I must hate people. After all, slavery was only abolished 89 years before I was born, so I must still be a hater.
Me, a hater? Puh-leeze.
But, seriously, can someone please explain to me exactly why the voter ID movement is bad? If requiring you to show a picture ID is going to diminish the number of Democratic voters … am I to understand that there are a significant number of people that have NO ID in today’s world? Or, to be very specific, that there are a significant number of potentially Democratic voters that have NO ID today?
You have to show an ID to cash a check. You have to show an ID to use a credit card. You have to show an ID to pick up a child from school. You need an ID to get a library card.
I do not understand why showing an ID when I want to vote for a sheriff, a city councilman or a President is a bad thing. Can someone explain that to me, please?
There is a lawsuit now moving forward in Kansas that’s illustrative. Arthur Spry and Charles Hamner, residents of a retirement home in Overbrook, KS, are suing that they were denied their right to vote, as they did not have a driver’s license, computer, or access to the birth records needed to secure a photo ID and vote in a recent election. Interesting … I’ll just note that they might not have the ability to access their birth records, but they apparently did have the resources to file a lawsuit. Just sayin’.
There are anecdotal stories on both side of the equation for people to point to. Perhaps some people in nursing homes have been marginalized, and didn’t have the resources/time/understanding to get IDs, so they couldn’t vote. On the other side, there are stories of people proudly declaring that they voted for Obama 5 times in the last election.
I think both kinds of incidents are relatively insignificant. The thing I do believe, however, is that each citizen should vote … once. Non-citizens? They don’t get a vote.
Today, voter ID laws have been enacted in 30 states. Photo IDs are required in 12 states currently. 13 more states have photo ID legislation pending. Importantly, federal law requires that any such ID must be free. Free. It’s in the constitution, even. Check the 24th amendment, which was passed in 1964. Poll taxes, or charging people for the right to vote, cannot be done in federal elections … or now, in any civic election. Since IDs are free, what are the Democrats so afraid of? Could it be that would-be Democratic voters are incapable of getting a free ID when it’s offered?
So, if the cost of an ID is not the issue … what is it, exactly? That the government shouldn’t need to know if their voters are citizens when they step up to the ballot box?
Personally, I don’t think this is a left/right, Republican/Democrat or an entitled/downtrodden thing. It’s, simply, a right/wrong thing.
But wait! There was actual research done on the topic by my beloved Mizzou … and guess what the study, described in BreitBart.com, found?
A 2008 University of Missouri study actually demonstrated that those who argue that Voter ID laws would suppress the vote are misguided. The study showed that Voter ID laws had little effect on voter turnout. Moreover, Jeffrey Milyo, professor of economics and public affairs at the University of Missouri and a scholar in the Center for Applied Economics at the University of Kansas, notes that overall voter turnout in Indiana actually increased after the implementation of photo ID.
I won’t go so far as to say that I think making a required photo ID will encourage more people to vote … but I am definitely of the opinion that having people prove their identity is a reasonable requirement before a person is allowed to vote. And, again, federal law requires that IDs be FREE to voters.
Can you prove that you’re you? Are you OK to prove that you’re you?
New York Times: We Should Be In A Rage
Wikipedia: Voter ID Laws In The United States
WIBW.com: Trial Set….