On Constitution Day 2012, read the manual for self-government

You’ve seen U.S. Senators brandishing the little booklet, like some octogenarian Red Guards. After several years of trying, the late Sen. Richard Byrd (D-Va.) got a law passed creating a new Federal holiday and mandating a special curriculum for all public schools in the United States to mark the birthday of the document.

The law establishes Sept. 17 as U.S. Constitution Day and requires all schools receiving Federal funds and all Federal agencies to provide materials about the Constitution. Or rather, to study what the ruling political class promotes as their interpretation of the U.S. Constitution.

Fortunately, the law has no enforcement power, nor does it allocate any money for the project. Libertarians nevertheless point out the law itself is unconstitutional, since no where in the Constitution is Congress given the authority to mandate school curriculum.

“There’s irony in using an unconstitutional measure to promote Constitution Day,” said Roger Pilon, vice president for legal affairs at the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington.

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The Pilot critiques the Republican, endorses the Democrat – and ignores the Libertarian

The Pilot in Southern Pines had endorsed Steve Wilkins, my Democratic opponent in the 2nd Congressional District. They have a problem with Republican incumbent Renee Ellmers for not campaigning in Moore County.

But I had to point out to them that they are guilty of ignoring one of the candidates in the race – me.

Here is what I wrote in a letter-to-the-editor:

Unlike Rep. Renee Ellmers, I have visited Moore County several times during the campaign. I even had the pleasure of sharing the stage with Steve Wilkins at the Moore County League of Women Voters Forum.

But just as Rep. Ellmers has apparently ignored several parts of her new district, The Pilot apparently has chosen to ignore coverage of my candidacy, Although I thank you for using excerpts from my campaign website (LibertyPoint.org) in an article, you did not give me the courtesy of actually contacting me for an interview, which I deeply regret.

As a candidate who doesn’t solicit, receive or accept donations from businesses, special interest groups or political action committees, I rely completely on invitations to public forums from civic groups, and the journalistic integrity of most newspapers, and radio and TV stations to cover the story fairly and completely in order to get my message out to voters.

Hopefully in the future The Pilot will give fair and equal treatment to all candidates on the ballot so that the voters in Moore County can get the information they need to make an informed decision in the voting booth.

Let’s see if it gets printed or posted online.

All candidates should debate

Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers is apparently unwilling to debate her Democratic opponent in the 2nd Congressional District, according to the News & Observer. Steve Wilkins told the newspaper that Ellmers has turned down an invitation to debate on WTVD-TV.

I feel your pain Mr. Wilkins. I believe all ballot-qualified candidates should agree to debate, anywhere and in any venue, and that the media has a duty and obligation to cover all candidates fairly and equally. I think all ballot-qualified candidates should be invited to debates by the sponsors and organizers.

Unfortunately, WTVD and WRAL apparently don’t believe that. I wasn’t invited to take part in the WTVD debate. Nor will WRAL allow me to tape a video for their online candidate guide, a service they’ve offered to the Republican and Democratic candidates.

I believe anyone in office, or seeking office, has a duty and responsibility to accept any and all invitations to speak to groups and especially to debate. Mrs. Ellmers herself has noted that she’s new to the district due to redistricting. That should make such personal contact even more important.

The model I’m using for my campaign is the same model I will use if elected, that of the citizen-servant envisioned by our nation’s founders when they wrote the Constitution.

No amount of flashy TV advertising can substitute for actually meeting and talking with your constituents.

Return to the Rule of Law

If the president acts above the rule of law and fights his own wars, and Congress Acts below it by letting him get away with it, what can we do about it, asks Judge Andrew Napolitano in an op ed “Rule of law provides equal protection.”

The answer is simple: Vote Libertarian. And if you can’t do that, write in a name (even though it won’t be counted) … or don’t vote at all.

“The rule of law is a three legged stool on which freedom sits,” Judge Napolitano  writes. The first leg requires laws be enacted publicly, by legitimate authority, in advance of the behavior they’re supposed to regulate, and must be designed to defend individual freedom.

The second leg holds that no one is above the law, and no one is beneath it.

The third leg requires that laws can only be enacted by fundamental structures that can’t be changed arbitrarily, capriciously, or quickly, even by an overwhelming majority.

Remove or weaken any of these legs, and the stool collapses. That appears to be what is happening today:

In our era, the violations of the rule of law have become most troublesome when the government breaks its own laws. Prosecute Roger Clemens for lying to Congress? What about all the lies Congress tells? Prosecute John Edwards for cheating? What about all the cheating in Congress when it enacts laws it hasn’t read? Bring the troops home from the Middle East? What about all the innocents killed secretly by the president using CIA drones? Can’t find a way to justify Obamacare under the Constitution? Why not call it what its proponents insisted it isn’t — a tax?

Read the full op ed.

Another Congressional Re-Run

When I was growing up one of the things I enjoyed about summer was TV re-runs. I could catch up on missed episodes of my favorite programs, particular The Twilight Zone and Star Trek (the original) and watch the best episodes again.

TV doesn’t operate that way anymore. But the U.S. Congress does. In fact, it has re-runs all year round. Right now, we’ve witnessing the re-run of another economic “crisis” manufactured by the inability of the power parties to avoid the sequestration of Defense Department funds which will supposedly occur if they don’t reach an agreement over the extension of tax cuts.

“Some members of Congress are anxious to undo sequestration, ignoring the inconvenient fact that they created the process in the first place,” writes Christopher Preble in Cato@Liberty. “Instead of accepting responsibility, they are proposing legislation that would force the White House to outline the effects of the cuts. And people wonder why Congress’s approval rating is at an all-time low.”

Sen. Patty Murray says Democrats won’t agree to a deal that “throws the middle-class families under the bus.” They want the wealthy to pay their “fair share.”

Republican leader Sen. Mitch McConnell replies that Democrats are playing “a high-stakes game of chicken with the single-minded goal of taking more money from the people who earn it for the government to waste.”

It is disgrace that exchanges of fear-mongering clichés like this are what poses as political discourse in the Congress today. Both major parties ought to be ashamed of themselves, but unfortunately, they lack the underpinning of a moral belief system needed in order to feel shame.

For the record, I agree with Mr. Preble’s title: Let sequestration happen. It’s not the best way to cut the bloated defense budget, but it appears it’s the only way it can happen.

Court Decison An Incredible Blow to Freedom and Liberty

The Supreme Court decision upholding the Constitutionality of the Affordable Health Care Act is disturbing, but not surprising. It’s disturbing to anyone who appreciates the original intent of those who wrote the U.S. Constitution.

But it’s not surprising to anyone who recognizes that presidents and congressmen of both major parties, and Supreme Court justices, long ago stopped respecting the idea of a limited federal government laid out in that document.

Both Republicans and Democrats favor big government in all things, including healthcare. It’s only a question of whether big government will be large or huge.

Republicans and conservatives are already clamoring that the only way to repeal “Obamacare” is to fire President Obama and replace him with Mitt Romney. That idea is ludicrous. Romney won’t undo “Obamacare,” he’ll just “fix it” and make it “better.”

Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson called the court’s decision “an incredible blow to the bedrock principles of freedom and liberty.” I could not agree more.

The governor said, “Whether the Court chooses to call the individual mandate a tax or anything else, allowing it to stand is a truly disturbing decision. The idea that government can require an individual to buy something simply because that individual exists and breathes in America is an incredible blow to the bedrock principles of freedom and liberty. It must be repealed, and Congress needs to get about doing so today.”

I wholeheartedly endorse Gov. Johnson’s statement and pledge that if elected to Congress I will work to repeal The Affordable Health Care Act

Gary Johnson Endorsement

I was proud to receive this endorsement from Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate for president.

Noting my 25 years of military service, Gov. Johnson said, “Brian has repeatedly demonstrated the courage and integrity to honor the oath he’ll take as a member of the Congress: to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. We need that integrity in our Congress now more than ever.”

I’m equally proud to endorse and support Gov. Johnson for president, because he’s the only candidate who will end America’s interventionist foreign wars and bring our troops home.  He will stop out of control spending, and advance our personal liberty just as he did as Governor of New Mexico.

Irving for Congress

Today I filed to run for the U.S. House of Representative District 2.

I am running for Congress because I believe it’s time to stop all war. Stop the wars in and Afghanistan and the multitude of other nations were our troops are fighting. Stop the war on drugs and alternative lifestyles. Stop the war on immigrants. Stop the war on civil liberties. Stop the war on the U.S. Constitution. Stop the wars on food, healthcare, guns … stop all war.

The State of the Union is a perpetual state of war. Democrats and Republicans have used the fear of real or imaginary enemies, both at home and abroad, to manufacture and manipulate Americans, to divide us, to pit one racial, religious or social group against another – all for the purpose of stampeding us into giving up more and more our a precious liberties for the false promise of security.

This campaign draws this theme, and its inspiration from my good friend R. Lee Wrights, who is seeking the Libertarian nomination for President of the United States.

My platform is simple: I want to reduce the size, scope and power of the federal government at all levels and on all issues, and will oppose increasing the size, scope and power of the federal government at any level, for any purpose.

I want to restore the republic our Founding Fathers established, a government of limited and enumerated powers whose only purpose is to protect our unalienable, individual rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

My goal will be to have a federal government small enough to fit inside the U.S. Constitution.

Some notes on my filing experience. I arrived at the State Board of Elections just as Bob Etheridge was concluding his press conference upon announcing his bid for N.C. governor. Once I worked my way through the media scrum, the filing process was relativity painless. Other than having to pay the exorbitant filing fee ($1,740) for the “privilege” of running for office, it is actually much easier to file for federal than state office. Unless I raise more than $5,000 (I wish) I won’t  have to fill out any intrusive financial reports.Enhanced by Zemanta

Visit my campaign website.