Liberal Democrat

Liberal Democrat
Liberal Democracy

Monday, August 27, 2018

Keith Hughes: Mark Levin's Liberty Amendments- Explained: Article V Convention of States

Source: Keith Hughes- Mark Levin's so-called Liberty Amendments explained 
Source: The New Democrat

I'm going to make a case for why Mark Levin's so-called Liberty Amendments are anti-conservative and you'll see what I mean by that.

When I think of a Conservative, I think of someone who believes in conserving  and conserving what they believe and a lot of other people believe is worth conserving. Things like free speech, right to privacy, separation of powers, equal protection, checks and balances, our three levels of government so governmental power is not overly centralized and that you even have checks and balances especially with the Federal Government so the executive doesn't become too powerful.

If you're a Conservative at least in the conservative-libertarian sense you shouldn't be a fan of this because it ends up limiting the power of the people at least as far as Americans being able to elect their own members of Congress at least in the Senate with the repeal of the 17th Amendment and instead of conserving the Constitution and amendments, it throws at least one of them out as far as the 17th Amendment.

The one amendment that Mark Levin proposes that I like relates to the U.S. Supreme Court. Arguably 9 of the most powerful people in the country and yet they're not accountable to anyone. I'm one that believes that politics and the Supreme Court is mixed together too much, that Justices take an anti- conservative approach to their rulings and rule on cases and laws based on their own personal politics, instead of whether they believe the law is constitution or not.

So I don't believe Supreme Court should have to run for election and be accountable to the people that way. But I do believe our Justices should be held accountable by the people through the President and U.S. Senate with term limits. That each Justice should serve terms and then have to be reappointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate to serve another term. Actual terms limits for the Chief Justice and only allow for them to serve 8 years let's say.

The only other so-called Liberty Amendment that Mark Levin proposes that I believe is interesting is his 9th Amendment that would make it easier to amend the Constitution and allow for states to do that themselves. Another anti-democratic amendment both small d and big d, because one of the reasons why Republicans have 34-50 governorships in the country when you're talking about states is because they're now basically a rural, blue-collar, Anglo-Saxon party where a lot of their members of their party have been in the country for hundreds of years. With the Democratic Party being an ethnic and racially diverse big city party that lives in big states with big cities

The reason why Levin's 9th Amendment is anti-Democratic with a big D is because if you allow for states to amend the Constitution by themselves without approval from Congress, Republican rural states and there are a lot of them could amend the Constitution simply based on their own politics. One of the great things about the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights is that Americans regardless of where they live all have the same constitutional rights as everyone else in the country under the U.S. Constitution. With states being allowed to make their own state laws as long as they're within the Constitution. Levin's 9th Amendment would change that. The reason why this amendment is anti-conservative, because again Conservatives are supposed to believe in conserving the Constitution and our constitutional rights. The 9th Amendment would make it easier to weaken the Constitution.

Again, if you're a Conservative you believe in conserving the Constitution and our constitutional rights. Not trying to blow it up because you're worried that the Democratic Party will have more power in the future simply because of current demographic trends and therefor need to step in now to limit the Democratic Party's potential for new political power in the future. You could make a case that Mark Levin's proposal for a balanced budget amendment and holding the Supreme Court accountable through term limits is very conservative. But most his other proposals are simply anti-democratic both as they relate to the Democratic Party and simply used to hurt one party in favor of the other through the Constitution and limiting American voters rights to decide who gets to serve them in Congress.
Keith Hughes: Mark Levin's Liberty Amendments Explained- Article V Convention of States

Monday, August 20, 2018

Americans United: 'We Are Americans United'- For Separation of Church and State

Source:Americans United- For the Separation of Church and State.
Source:The New Democrat

"Please watch and share this new video from Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Keeping religion out of government, and government out of religion, is the only way to protect religious freedom for all Americans.  If you care about women's reproductive rights, LGBTQ equality, the future of the Supreme Court, and countless other freedoms - then, YOU care about the separation of church and state!"

From Americans United

"Keeping religion out of government, and government out of religion, is the only way to protect religious freedom for all Americans. If you care about women's reproductive rights, LGBTQ equality, the future of the Supreme Court, and countless other freedoms - then, YOU care about the separation of church and state!"

From Americans United

From Wikipedia

"The First Amendment (Amendment I) to the United States Constitution prevents Congress from making any law respecting an establishment of religion, prohibiting the free exercise of religion, or abridging the freedom of speech, the freedom of the press, the right to peaceably assemble, or to petition for a governmental redress of grievances. It was adopted on December 15, 1791, as one of the ten amendments that constitute the Bill of Rights."

Source: Americans United- Defenders of the First Amendment 
I believe in my blogging over the years I've made it very clear what my politics are and I've tried to do so as well. I'm a Thomas Jefferson-Milton Friedman-John F. Kennedy Liberal, who believes in free will, free exercise of thought, free expression, and free choice. All things that Socialists and Nationalists tend to hate, because they believe they know what's best for everyone else instead. Separation of Church and State, is not a socialist or communist phrase, it's a Tom Jefferson ( one of our Founding Liberals ) who coined that term that all First Amendment defenders believe in as well. That government shouldn't and doesn't have the constitutional authority to prohibit religion and religious belief in America, but it doesn't have a right to promote religion and force Americans to live by some religious code and a certain set of moral and religious values.

Unlike communist states like the Communist Republic of Korea or theocracies like the Islamic Republic of Iran and even the Saudi Kingdom with is an Islamic theocratic monarchy, the United States of America has a the perfect balance for religion because of our liberal First Amendment and our liberal constitutional free speech rights. Which says Americans have a constitutional right to either believe in or not believe in religion, or practice or not practice religion. That's called freedom of choice which is protected by both our First Amendment and Fourth Amendment. And that government has no role in religion whatsoever other than to protect the constitutional right of all Americans ability to practice or not practice the religion of their choice, or no religion at all. Which is one thing that makes America not only great, but exceptional as well.

Monday, August 13, 2018

The Thinking Atheist: Seth Andrews- Interviewing Andrew Torrez: Christianity,Crimes, and The Constitution

Source: The Thinking Atheist- The Donald Trump, 45th POTUS 
Source: The New Democrat

I believe to believe in the First Amendment, as well as the Fourth Amendment, and I would add Fifth Amendment, you have to believe in the right to choose, the right to believe, the right to free expression and believe what you believe. Not saying you have to believe in religion and that America is a place and great place for Atheists and Agnostics such as myself, but that since this is not a communist state or any other kind of socialist state we believe that Americans have the constitutional right to practice or not practice religion.

Source: Player FM- The Thinking Atheist 
The freedom to and from religion and that we also have the Separation of Church and State. The Freedom of Religion, but that covers everyone and every type of religion in America and that Atheists and Agnostics have the same right as Christian of all sects, Jews, Muslims., again of all sects, as well as everyone else that practices one form of religion or another. And that government literally stays the hell out of religion other than to protect the rights of all free Americans to practice or not practice religion.

That we're not a communist or socialist state, but we're not a theocracy or some other fascist state and we don't tell Americans as a government how to practice or not practice religion and that government doesn't operate based on religious beliefs, but governs under the U.S. Constitution. The problem with America is not our Constitution or any of our constitutional amendments. The problem with America is that we have too many people who simply don't believe in it and ignore it. The Christian-Right especially which are really Christian-Theocrats who believe that their interpretation of the Bible should be what governs us, not the actual text of the Constitution. And that Separation of Church and State doesn't exist at all.

So now we not only have a Christian-Right that has been officially active at least since 1975 or so and played a big role in the 1976 presidential election and every election presidential or Congressional since, but we have a political party that's basically dominated by the Christian-Right. The Republican Party today, is not the Barry Goldwater Constitutional-Conservative-Libertarian party that they became when they nominated Barry Goldwater for President in 1964 and then not only nominated Ronald Reagan for President in 1980, but put Reagan in power and helped Republicans wins back the Senate in 1980 for the first time in a generation.

The GOP is now a party that's made up of Christian-Theocrats and Christian-Nationalists who believe they're the real Americans and the Constitution only protects them and their rights and beliefs. And the Un-Americans ( anyone who disagrees with them on anything ) are invaders essentially and not deserving of the same rights and beliefs as the Christian-Nationalists in America. With the never-trumpers the Goldwater Conservatives in the party, are now representing the minority in what once was a great conservative party in America and along with the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom, perhaps the only two great conservative parties in the developed world.

Again, as a Liberal I believe in the freedom of religion, free choice, personal choice, personal; responsibility, but I also believe in free speech and the First Amendment in it's entirety and that you have the right to your beliefs and I have the right in mine, but that you and big government or government in any form doesn't have the right to force your beliefs on me. I'll allow you to make your case for why you believe what you believe, but you're not going to be able to force your beliefs on me or any other free American in this country. That's called the First Amendment which protects our Freedom of Religion, but also Freedom of Speech. and Separation of Church and State.
The Thinking Atheist: Seth Andrews- Interviewing Andrew Torrez: Christianity, Crimes, and The Constitution

Monday, August 6, 2018

Skeptic Magazine: Michael Shermer Interviewing Amy Alkon- 'Unfuckology: A Field Guide To Living With Guts and Confidence'

Source: Skeptic Magazine- Amy Alkon, talking to Skeptic Magazine 
Source: The New Democrat

I'm with Michael Shermer on this starting out in this interview where he says he doesn't know why publishers bleep cuss words in titles of books and or bleep one letter in the title of the book. Excuse my language ( if you want to ) but if you're going to say fuck or shit or whatever it might be, you should just say fuck or shit and not be a chickenshit about it, because you're worried it might offend overly sensitive people or deeply religious and culturally conservative people. If you don't want to say fuck or shit, but communicate anger with people, use a proper substitute like damn or hell, but don't say blankin which doesn't mean anything. Either use curse words or not. You gotta say shit or fuck, go for the gold and take a stand and say shit or fuck instead of saying you don't give an f or s. Words have meaning so if you're going to use them make you sure you what you're saying before you use them.

Source: Amazon- Amy Alkon's Unfuckology 
Amy Alkon, gets into self-help in her book ( to say the least ) her whole book is about self-help, but does it in a different way and isn't nice about it. She says one of the ways people can improve themselves is to do things that make them uncomfortable in order to conquer your fears. I think the common human reaction is to avoid people and situations that intimidate you and make you uncomfortable. Very common in school which is why good teachers will notice when one of their students is afraid of something and doesn't want to do it and tries to stay away from doing those things or being with those people. And what they'll do instead is try to get their students to deal with those situations and parts of their schoolwork where they are lacking do they can be better at it at and overcome those fears.

The only way you can overcome fear is to no longer to be fearful of whatever you're afraid of. Should sound simple enough but if that isn't then maybe you should go look for your brain, perhaps rent one or get a new one, but the point is the way to conquer fear is to realize your fear first and then take it on. Why are you afraid to speak in public or meet new people, be in crowded places where the only people you know there are the people you're meeting at the restaurant or public place that you're at. Whatever the situation is that you're afraid of and take it on. Practice being in the situation that you're afraid of and try to develop a comfort level there. Like when you're meeting new people relax and perhaps imagine that the people you're meeting you've known a while. And talk to them like you would talk to your friends, would be one example of how you can overcome a fear of new people.

Fear is not an excuse, to paraphrase Amy Alkon here. That just because you're afraid of something or someone is not good enough reason to do what you're afraid of or be with people who intimidate you. Because the reason why you might fear doing certain things or being around certain people, is your problem and your fault. That you lack the self-confidence that self-confident intelligent people have in order to be strong and feel that you can handle any situation and communicate with anyone that you need to do to be successful at life and win the game of life. ( To paraphrase Newt Gingrich ) Instead of saying life sucks and you suck at life and therefore you're just going to be a loser, because losing is so easy and you're so experienced at it and being successful and accomplishing things requires educated risks and taking real chances.

There's that old praise the highway of life and that might sound corny to some people, but it's so true and at this point is at risk of becoming cliche because it's been around for a long time and it's so true. But the point is that life isn't easy or hard. Life is not a picnic or a life sentence at a work camp. It's somewhere in between where things and times in life can be great for people like a great vacation. And there times where life can be a real struggle like when you're out-of-work or get in trouble with the law, lose a close relative or friend. The way you be good at life his though intelligence and with that knowing that you're smart and you're always learning and using those skills to be successful at life.

To make the good times last and always be around, as well as get though the deep valleys in life as well. To paraphrase President Richard Nixon and his farewell speech and he retired from the presidency in 1974 for well-known reasons, "only if you've been in the deepest valley can you know what it's like to be on the highest mountain." Meaning in order be where you want to be in life and be successful at it, you'll go though some struggles that you have to work through which will only make you better by the way if you play them right and perhaps even look back at those times at positive experiences, because it made what you accomplished worth it and feel like you earned your success.
Skeptic Magazine: Michael Shermer Interviewing Amy Alkon- 'Unfuckology: A Field Guide To Living With Guts and Confidence'