Rep. Steans: Time To Sell National Parks

This week, it was announced that budget cuts would now include canceling the Mars missions. However, Rep. Cliff Steans (R-FL) wants to go further. In a recent speech, Steans called for the selling off of national park lands. We have previously seen states sell off park lands, government buildings and other property — even as we burned hundreds of billions in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In a town hall meeting Belleview, Florida, on February 25 that Steans stated “we don’t need any more national parks in this country” and that we need to “actually sell off some of our national parks.” That is a remarkable proposal since national parks are the most successful program in the government with rising demands of citizens visiting parks and sites. One would think we would be expanding the parks not cutting off one of the most popular government programs.

Here is the full statement:

I got attacked in a previous town meeting for not supporting another national park in this country, a 200-mile trailway. And I told the man that we don’t need more national parks in this country, we need to actually sell off some of our national parks, and try and do what a normal family would do is — they wouldn’t ask Uncle Joe for a loan, they would sell their Cadillac, or they would take their kids out of private schools and put them into public schools to save to money instead of asking for their credit card to increase their debt ceiling.

Putting aside the thousands of jobs and millions of recreational hours supplied to citizens through these parks, we continue to show a bizarre sense of priority in sending billions abroad to fund wars in countries with growing anti-American sentiments. Instead of saving hundreds of billions of dollars, we will instead continue to cut educational, scientific, and environmental programs that protect our future.

Source: Think Progress as first seen on Reddit

183 thoughts on “Rep. Steans: Time To Sell National Parks

  1. I know how to save money. Send Rep. Stearns packing. He can forfeit his salary because he is already being paid by the corporate lobbyists. This is the same guy who thinks Obama’s birth certificate is suspect!

  2. lets all eat our seed corn so next year we can starve to death. It makes so much more sense than asking billionaires to cough up an extra buck or two – or cutting a defense budget as large as the rest of the worlds combined.

  3. There is a deliberate fire sale of public assets going on, not only in the US but in other nations. The spoils are going to the very richest people in the world, those who already hold some fantastic percentage of the world’s wealth/assets. I urge people to read the blog nakedcapitalism because this blog explains the wealth transfer very well. I would also recommend Bill Black’s blog on corporate criminality.

    Clearly ruling elites have decided they don’t just want most of it, they want all of it. They are going for it, here and abroad. The method they use is to strip out funding for all public good, declare the stripped out assets a failure and then seize them.

    If they are so worthless why are private entities so eager to snap them up? A savvy businessman wouldn’t buy such worthless junk as our national parks, right?

    Time to call bull shit on all of it. This is theft. Our most precious resources are being taken and consolidated in the hands of a few. These resources will be used up until the entire planet is poisoned with the greedy mismanagement of the few against the many.

    This isn’t a partisan issue. We only believe this is partisan because we are not looking closely at what is really going on. We also tend not to make connections between events in other nations and the US. That is one reason OWS is so important. It doesn’t filter events through American exceptionalism nor partisanship. It just looks at what is happening and tries to stop it.

  4. Why the he’ll not Teddy Roosevelt would be so proud of his party today….. Kinda like he was with Taft…….

  5. Where ever and whenever there’s an idiotic or really terrible idea around there’s always seems to be a Republican close at hand to support it and, indeed, claim credit for it.

  6. In case you haven’t noticed, the U.S. government is going bankrupt. So selling land might be a good way to raise some money and reduce spending.

  7. I think it is highly partisan issue. Bush coined the term the “ownership society”. That’s the way things work in Texas. Bush also wanted to totally privatize Social Security. Ryan and others are following in his footsteps. Dismantling the EPA is another partisan issue that Rafflaw brought up on another thread. Republicans have turned town money for public transportation and high speed rail among many other things. Taking money away from public schools is yet another republican attempt at privatization. The list goes on and on……….

  8. It’s funny how everyone is saying what an idiotic idea it is to sell government owned land, but nobody explains why it is such a horrible idea.

  9. Belleview [Rep. Stern’s district] is in close proximity to the Ocala Nat’l Forest, a beautiful area w/ lots of boating, camping and hiking. Dollars to donuts Stearn’s benefactors want to own ONF for their private game preserves.

  10. Jill,
    “It doesn’t filter events through American exceptionalism nor partisanship. It just looks at what is happening and tries to stop it.”


    Right on the money. The partisanship, the right left middle and all the other name-calling only stops us from thinking. From seeing what is happening.
    If you SEE it, then you might ask yourself why it is happening.

    Particularly agree as to the haves grabbing more regardless of what land they are citizens of. India is one such land, but even there international capital and corporations are grabbing land from the small-holders.

    Billionaires get richer, and the small farmer goes broke and commits suicide—leaving the widow with a debt, and children she supports by day labor.
    This is only a little indication—-it would take hours to explain.

    So be glad we can fight this here a bit.

  11. This is not a testament to the lunacy of Stearn but rather to the idiocy of the American people who vote for him and the rest of the republican/tparty.


    tt is so damn easy to look for a scapegoat, and our politicians supply them willingly. We seize the issues they supply, and as RWA’s we turn as their winds blow—like windvanes. Just as a herd of gnus or swallows or sardines swing in synchronous movement.

    We haven’t come further than that. Just why we feel so amazed when we read the writings of men/women who use their minds—-you have many you could cite.

    Wonder why they can? They must have started young, and were talented, and encouraged. Can we all go up the ladder a bit. Yes, I say.

  13. “It’s funny how everyone is saying what an idiotic idea it is to sell government owned land, but nobody explains why it is such a horrible idea.”

    The National Parks System is a historic national treasure, mostly kept pristine for the enjoyment of all. If we sold something such as “The Grand Canyon” it would be destroyed by developers. “Grand Canyon DisneyWorld”. Those who would want that have no sense of the beauty of nature or the heritage of the nation. I could go on but I’m afraid the answers would be too complex for you to digest.

  14. The other side of this is that republicans are against the tax increases that are needed to raise revenue to avoid the cuts. They are always ranting about how we must balance the budget through cuts but have no tax increases on our wealthiest citizens. I think Romney’s newest proposal lowers taxes by 20% on the wealthiest while raising them on low income people.

  15. SwM
    We can put them on scales: Repubs and Dems.
    And in our convictions decide one is more sinful than the other.
    But can we declare that no dems are sinful? Can we say that they are excused, and put on our blinders.
    This is certainly not something I would accuse you of doing.
    I say we, because until Jill opened my eyes, I at least, belonged to the windvanes with painted labels.
    Jill said:
    “It doesn’t filter events through American exceptionalism nor partisanship. It just looks at what is happening and tries to stop it.”

  16. Mike S.
    Let me extend your idea off topic.
    Who owns most of the farm land? Who owns most of agribusiness?
    Who controlled the states dominated by mining companies?
    Who is leveling our mountains, fracking and destroying our water, ……..
    the list cán certainly you extend.

    So, it’s not only our national parks that are attacked.
    An obvious point, but should be mentioned I feel.

  17. idealist, You either vote yes or no to fund the projects. You either vote yes or no to increase taxes. In Texas the republicans vote to cut the schools funds and turn the roads into toll roads. One can go through the congressional and state records and look at the votes. Kasich in Ohio, a republican, turned down the money for trains. Republicans in Texas are taking away funds from planned parenthood and denying poor women healthcare not democrats. Budget decisions tend to be partisan.

  18. This is one example of our human faults. It uses Mississippi as an example.
    But my idea is that it applies to us all.
    It shows that the last a person has in terms of self-respect is his opinions, which he won’t abandon is spite of them going against his own welfare.
    Witness the destitute white food stams user; the young man who realizes the nonsense in his positiion vv health care, etc.

    Do we guard our opinions like our lives? Yes, I think so.
    That’s why learning is so hard, even as a child.

    I won’t say who etc. Don’t want your pre-filtering to be engaged.

  19. Just in case Mike Spindell and others aren’t aware, the U.S. government owns not just landmarks such as the Grand Canyon and Mount Rushmore, but 650,000,000 acres throughout the U.S., which amounts to nearly 30% of the country. Much of this could be sold off while keeping important national landmarks such as the beloved Grand Canyon and Yellowstone in government possession.

  20. Is there any way we could get away with selling Rep. Steans to some slave trader somewhere?

    Um….never mind, unloading him would be like The Ransom of Red Chief.

  21. SwM
    Yes, yes, yes.
    But the issue to me is how do we change this? The Dems, as far as my ignorance reckons, do not have an organized resistance to ALEC, not an organized resistance to women’s health destruction.
    So how is that to be solved.
    Obama has only so much political capital—so don’t expect anything of him—even if he were inclined. His Sasha thing got only ridicule from Fox, etc.
    How can we get women of both colors to revolt? The politicians are holding onto the chickens they have, and the dems are running scared, I fear.

  22. It’s all hyperbole anyway. Say something outrageous; get a few minutes of air time.

    Sterns is the dude driving the oversight and investigation on taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood.

  23. Are you aware, Swathmore, that according to the U.S. Supreme Court, President Obama is not a natural-born citizen per Minor v. Happersett (1874) due to the fact that his parents were not U.S. citizens?

  24. idealist, We do have organized resistance to women’s health care cuts in many places and it is growing every day. We are even having demonstrations in Texas. The dems are not running scared on women’s healthcare as they are effectively galvanizing the women’s vote.

  25. Neil,
    That’s a point which is countered by the fact that we have BLM, which is kissing the ranchers arsle, the Bureau of Mining, etc all fighting to keep their jobs and fight the commercial interests.
    Tax the rich. Tax all corps flat rate, no rebates, no subsidies.
    A better idea.

    Until we have the good sense to see what our “useless acres” are worth, it is best to hold on to them.
    Who knows, we might have the equivalent of Afganistans mineral deposits.
    And the miners won’t tell us, or course.

  26. If it is not vaginal probes invading women’s health and ravings about contraceptives, it is selling off the national treasures that are the National Parks! Is this really the 21st Century? As someone else noted, those who voted for this teabag clown are responsible!

  27. SwM,
    Thanks for the good news from Texas.
    Is there a coordinated campaign from the DNC for all states where the Pubs are fighting women’s rights?
    And who’s the national figurehead? Can’t Michelle and Prof Biden do something, instead of Mrs Bountiful actions for children’s food and veteran families?

  28. SwM
    Was it you that damned Texas (in my eyes) for one in four women having no health insurance?
    Geez, you’ve got your work cut out for you.

    The problem with the USA is that no one is responsible for health care at the state/county/local level. Or is there. And what kind of leverage has the HHS?
    There’s no one to require statistics, reports, studies, state to state stats, county stats, etc. Without a single payer system you can’t influence doodly-squat.

    You are apparently good at picking stats. But who do we put the pressure on? Anyone in your state? County? City?

  29. idealist707 1, March 13, 2012 at 12:47 pm

    Must not be any black people in Mississippi to interview looks like the last ones where just moving out around the 2:30 mark. Maher is a nasty person how anyone could watch his show is beyond belief. Obama needs to give the money back.

  30. P.S. nice job on hijacking the thread. This thread is about Cliff Stearns and the idea of selling federal lands to pay down debt.

  31. SwM
    It was a guess. I am getting more warmed up, and it seems to effect my other languages. J’etait bavarder avec mon marchant des fruit aujourdhui en Francais. Il est de Liban, Beirut, y ca marche tres bien pour moi.

  32. Poll: Obama’s a Muslim to many GOP voters in Alabama, Mississippi

    Reporting from Washington—
    After years of battling false claims and viral emails alleging that he is a Muslim, President Obama hasn’t gotten far among Republican voters in Alabama and Mississippi – about half still believe he is Muslim and about 1 in 4 believes his parents’ interracial marriage should have been illegal, a new poll shows.

    The automated survey by Public Policy Polling, conducted over the weekend in advance of Tuesday’s GOP primaries in both states, showed Republicans Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich locked in a three-way battle for votes.,0,334348.story

  33. Bdaman,
    You provide such nice targets. Have you been a carney?
    As for Mississippi, would’nt you as a white (?) person too?
    As for jacking you should know. But checking shows that I was following others comments, not pushing anything than commenting Jill. etc.

  34. Bdaman 1, March 13, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    P.S. nice job on hijacking the thread. This thread is about Cliff Stearns and the idea of selling federal lands to pay down debt.

    Do you see your name anywhere.

    Guilty conscience eh ?

  35. Neil Davis has a reasonable question: ‘why is selling National Parks and other federal assets such a horrible idea?’

    To see why selling federal lands is a bad idea we need to look at the federal deficit.

    Federal debt is really bi-modal. In the current and near term we have debt largely due to the current economic recession and ‘shock absorber’ expenses like unemployment insurance. Reasonable tax rates – notice I did not say soak the rich – and increased economic activity will largely resolve these deficits. In the current and near term it is not necessary to sell government lands to solve the government debt problem.

    The second big bump in the federal deficit builds over the next several decades. Over the next 50 years or so the federal deficit will increase due to a few types of expenses such as growth in the cost of health care and funding for social security.

    Some would argue that social security does not contribute to the national debt. That argument gets into a bunch of hair splitting, mind numbing definitions that I will leave to others. I think we can say with out fear of contradiction, that there is a real challenge coming related to how the society will provide social security with fewer than two workers to fund the benefits for each retiree. Fortunately, we have a decade or so to figure out that very serious question.

    The real driver of government deficits, over the next 50 years or so, is the growth in the cost of health care. The congressional budget office has released projections that by 2089 health care products and services would consume 99% of all economic activity. The implication is that there would be nothing left over to produce food, shelter, energy – you get the idea. This is, of course, impossible.

    The question is not whether we will change the way we provide health care in this country. The question is whether we will manage that change in a thoughtful and efficient manner.

    The reason why it is a really bad idea to sell federal forests and national parks is that the sale will not solve our deficit problem. The federal government could sell every thing, every forest, every park, every desk, lamp and chair and the returns would be lost in the round off error related to the mountain of debt that will build over the next several decades.

    Solving the federal deficit problem in the long run means solving a hand full of very serious problems. The growth of health care costs is one the most significant, if not the most significant problem that has to be solved.

    Selling National Parks is not a good idea because in the current term it is not necessary and in the long run it does not help.

  36. Downeastliberator said:
    “Dollars to donuts Stearn’s benefactors want to own ONF for their private game preserves”

    Yep, why didn’t I see that. Are you a local?

    They say that corruption (charity) begins at home. In this case rewards for his sponsors.

    How in the hell do you fight this?
    There isn’t a town, a cong district, a state that isn’t infested and infected and controlled by these swine.
    If we could see who your banks loan to, and against what security, etc, it would tell us a lot—-but commercial secrets you know.

    So we’re back on the Stearn thread, but the problem is all over the USA.

  37. BFM,
    Interesting reasoning, out of my depth:
    “In the current and near term we have debt largely due to the current economic recession and ‘shock absorber’ expenses like unemployment insurance”

    You don’t suppose that Georges unfinanced wars had anything to do with the debt? Only 4 trillion I’ve heard mentioned.
    Would cutting “defense” (offense) expenses help matters radically?
    And don’t come back with greater unemployment. There are things to do at home other than deliver 1400 dollar coffee pots, and 25 dollar scotch tape rolls to the wars.

  38. bigfatmike,

    “Selling National Parks is not a good idea because in the current term it is not necessary and in the long run it does not help.”

    Yep. Really good post.

  39. Thank you for this:
    “Are you aware, Swathmore, that according to the U.S. Supreme Court, President Obama is not a natural-born citizen per Minor v. Happersett (1874) due to the fact that his parents were not U.S. citizens?”

    You have proven yourself to be a mindless inflamed boil on the buttocks of the nation. Any opinion expressed by you can safely be ignored as the effluent spewed from a pustule.

  40. BFM says:
    “Solving the federal deficit problem in the long run means solving a hand full of very serious problems. The growth of health care costs is one the most significant, if not the most significant problem that has to be solved. ”

    Only one solution. Get the insurance companies out of the equation.
    And get a central buyer of medicine who has the big buyer leverage to use against Big Pharma.

    The single payer system does that, covers all, and is fully controlled and financed. Even in definitely non-socialist countries like Germany. And in our socialist cradle to grave sloth encouraging country of Sweden (as you would probably say) it works too.

    Our health care is assured in the future our costs are half yours nationally per person, so why are economic wise people like yourselves so scared of letting government do it. One bit of news, it isn’t the government here, it is the bureaucracy which was first established in 1600s and has been trusted to do what it is supposed to do. However there are overseers there too.
    The UN loaned one of ours for a while.

  41. Jill, (There is a deliberate fire sale of public assets going on . . .) , your post is very well articulated.

  42. So, I state a factual point, you attack me personally by calling me a vulgar name, you don’t address the point that I stated, and therefore everyone should ignore me.

    I was expecting more legal scholarship from readers of a blog such as this. Have you even read what the Supreme Court has had to say about what a natural-born citizen is? I suppose not.

  43. Neil D.
    Are you a sock puppet?
    You remind me of someone else here who comes in full of off-topic BS and plasters it everywhere.
    As Bdaman would say: “you’re off-topic, and should be beaten……remind me to do so when I finish my own OT rant.”

    BTW haven’t heard of this decision in the great “is he or isn’t he” debate.
    Do elucidate. You’re the unrequited scholar here. PUSS PUSS

  44. Do you even know what an evidentiary standard is, Neil? Apparently not or you’d realize you are fighting a battle you cannot win. Birthers are dismissed here because we’ve heard it all before – including Minor v. Happersett – and none (as in not a single one) of the Birther arguments has ever withstood critical scrutiny. So either we can cater to your delusional understanding of citizenship and allow you to create a distraction that we all know leads precisely to Birthers being full of crap or we can cut to the chase and dismiss you as the crackpots you are. There are a lot of legitimate criticisms of Obama – the least of which is he’s violated the Constitution every bit as much as Bush and Cheney and then some – but his citizenship isn’t one of them. Birtherism is thinly veiled racism and an argument with zero legal merit.

  45. Idealist, Swathmore mom posted a video pertaining to the birther issue, which is what I was responding to. And Minor v. Happersett is the only Supreme Court case in which the Constitutional meaning of “natural-born citizen” is addressed. The opinion of Minor Court states:

    “At common law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners.”

    It is common knowledge that President Obama’s father was never a U.S. citizen. If you wish to disagree with this, fine. But instead of calling names and simply dismissing my argument as ridiculous based on the fact that most people would disagree with it, you should provide a logical argument against it so we can all learn from the discussion, including myself.

  46. Gene, if you are able to provide some actual critical scrutiny to the issue of Minor v. Happersett, I would love to see what it is.

  47. Neil,

    Go back through this blog and look for birther threads. Search the name “Vince Treacy”. Do your own homework. I’m not going to repeat the arguments again simply because you want to create a distraction on this thread. The issue here is not Obama’s citizenship. It’s not even remotely close to the topic at hand other than the asshat suggesting we sell off our national parks is sympathetic to birtherism’s racism by proxy.

  48. Neil,

    Where does it say that both parents have to be citizens.
    We have many of which no parent was American, who are granted citizenship solely on the basis of being born here. Or am I wrong on that, with the exception of children born to diplomats.

    And if your crap has any merit, why did it not get anywhere with all the 1%’s money available to drive it? Apparently no legal merit, I would conclude.

    And why the hell are you here? Trolling is your sport????

  49. Thanks Gene, I’ll take a look. By the way, you should really stop with the appeals to ridicule and trying to play the race card.

  50. Well Neil, I’ll drop the ridicule and the statements that birtherism is thinly disguised racism just about the time birtherism stops being ridiculous and thinly disguised racism.

  51. Idealist, See the plural nouns in this phrase “children born in a country of parents who were its citizens.” President Obama only had a citizen parent, not citizen parents. There are several scenarios in which a person is a U.S. citizen due to being born in the U.S., but natural-born citizens have to have citizen parents according to the Minor Court.

  52. Perhaps I should clarify, Elaine. His mom was a citizen, his father wasn’t, and therefore doesn’t fit the Minor Court”s description of a natural-born citizen which is a child born in a country of parents who were its citizens.

  53. Neil:

    this has been gone over at length on numerous threads.

    He is the pres. at this point he could be from Barsoom and it is not going to put him out of office. Give it up and if you dont like him, vote for Romney or Ralph Nader in November.

    But it would be a good idea to get rid of some of the public lands owned by the federal government. the major national parks should remain as national parks although you can make the case for private ownership. But I think if the government is going to sell Yosemite they should offer shares to all of us for a reasonable price. I know I would buy as much as I could afford.

    Maybe some of those millions of acres of federal land could be used as reparations for American blacks who could prove they are the descendants of slaves.

  54. Neil, that has been litigated and dismissed by Courts of competent jurisdiction. It is a non-starter argument. Give it up, because beating your head against a brick wall is hard on the wall.

  55. Who needs cherry trees when you can have a Starbucks and an Abercrombie & Fitch and a Spencer’s Gifts all paying rent to a private owner, Bob?

  56. I am interested in the Constitutional principle, Bron. I really don’t care that he is President despite the fact that he is arguably not eligible to hold the office. Too much land in government hands is a bad thing. I agree.

  57. The supreme court is about as competent as they come Otteray. Read what it said in Minor v. Happersett.

  58. Gene,

    I found this:

    Vince Treacy 1, April 27, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    Sandstone: “Obama is a citizen born in Hawaii. Maybe someone here would like to address the fact that he was born a Brit subject to the British Nationality Act of 1948. His father was a British subject and his mother was too young to pass on her citizenship to her son. Obama may be a U.S. citizen, but Natural Born Citizen as required in the Constitution?”


    Obama was born a “subject” of the United States in Hawaii in 1961, subject to the jurisdiction of the US, under the 14th Amendment.

    Obama was never subject to British Empire or Kenyan power or jurisdiction.

    His father was a lawfully admitted exchange student who was also completely subject to US jurisdiction.

    Obama COULD have claimed Kenyan citizenship when he grew up, but he never did.

    His mother was a natural born United States citizen.

    Sandstone is pathetically confused, since, if Obama HAD been born in Kenya, his mother MIGHT have been too young to convey citizenship, IF she had not lived for five years after age 14 in the US. But Obama was born in the US, so that does not apply.

    Sandstone is flogging a crank constitutional theory.

  59. “I really don’t care that he is President despite the fact that he is arguably not eligible to hold the office.”

    1) It’s only arguable if you don’t understand either citizenship or the rules of evidence.

    2) If you don’t care that he is President, then his eligibility is a moot point. This indicates another reason for your challenging his citizenship. Two words that start with “r” come to mind.

  60. Neil, if they grant Orly Taitz cert, then I will believe. Until then, the lower court decision stands. Give it a rest.

    Orly really needs to pay her fines and go back to doing whatever she does for a day job.

  61. Neil Davis,

    Who elects the president; the people or the states?

    Who said Obama is a natural born citizen qualified to sit as president of the United States? The people or the state of Hawaii?

    Who has standing to object to Hawaii’s determination of Obama’s status as natural born citizen? You or those 49 other states?

    Did those 49 other states voice any problem with the full faith and credit clause per Obama’s citizenship status?

    The word you’re looking for, to describe the reason why your arguments are so futile, is ‘justiciability.’

  62. Rafflaw,

    Absolutely; and don’t forget to check out the Washington Monument shaped hookahs while you’re there.

  63. Neil,
    You still haven’t answered the question?
    Why thousands of new borns birthed by Mexican mother who save their money and buy birth trips to the USA to get an anchor baby, are GRANTED american citizenship?
    They are born everyday in LA hospitals.
    And none of these newborns have ANY parents with USA citizenship.
    Explain that.

  64. Everything You Need To Know About Being A “Natural-Born Citizen”
    by Simon Maloy
    May 12, 2011

    Were you born within the territorial boundaries of the United States? Were your parents not in the service of a foreign government at the time of your birth? If so, then congratulations! You’re a natural-born citizen of the United States of America. If you’re over 35 and have been a resident of the U.S. for 14 years, then you also meet the basic requirements to run for the presidency, as laid out in Article II of the Constitution. What’s more, you share these qualities with the current President of the United States, Barack Obama (update your resume).

    However, there is a small segment of America that would seek to deny you the rights you have as a natural-born American citizen. They are the remnants of the birther movement whose determination to the cause has not wavered even after President Obama released his birth certificate and proved beyond any doubt that he was, in fact, born in the United States. They are the post-birthers.

    They will deploy a variety of arguments endeavoring to explain why you and the president are a second-class citizens undeserving of your birthright. But rest assured: those arguments are all complete garbage.

    One Parent — The Father, For Example — Is Not A U.S. Citizen

    This is the biggie — the argument that, post-birth certificate, the birther faithful are clinging to like grim death. It basically goes like this: the fact that Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961 is immaterial given that his father was not a U.S. citizen, and thus the younger Obama is not a “natural-born citizen” as stipulated in Article II and is ineligible for the presidency. This argument takes full advantage of the fact that the framers of the Constitution never defined the term “natural-born citizen,” and the fact that the Supreme Court has never specifically defined it either.

    According to proponents of this theory, since the framers did not define “natural-born citizen,” we instead have to gauge their intent, and the framers’ intent — they claim — was to exclude the children of non-citizens. There seem to be two popular bases for this claim: one is the writing of Swiss philosopher Emmerich de Vattel, a contemporary of the Founders who wrote on principles of citizenship; the other is the Bible, which is very specific about making sure the children of Moabites not become kings of Judah.

    The Founders, for their part, apparently didn’t spend any time debating the definition of “natural-born citizen” before voting unanimously to include it in Article II. However, that doesn’t mean we don’t know what they understood the term to mean. Christina Lohman argued in a 2001 article for the Gonzaga Law Review that the absence of debate over “natural-born citizen” is an indication that the Founders had a clear understanding of its meaning as described by English common law, which subscribed to the principle of jus soli — “law of the soil,” or birthright citizenship:

    Under the English common law, from which the constitutional Framers apparently derived the words “natural-born citizen,” at least some foreign born children of American citizen parents are “natural-born.” Included are children born within the allegiance or jurisdiction of the United States. Children born to citizen parents who are in a foreign land as a result of United States government employment undoubtedly fall within the allegiance of the United States, and, therefore, are eligible for the Office of the Presidency.

    Over 150 years of judicial opinion and Constitutional amendments have helped solidify the definition of birthright citizenship in those terms. If you were born within the territorial boundaries of the United States, regardless of your parents’ citizenship status (diplomats excluded), you are a natural-born U.S. citizen and entitled to all the attendant rights and privileges. The Fourteenth Amendment indicates as much: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.” (The issue of who is a citizen by birth comes up in litigation mainly through interpretation of the 14th Amendment’s citizenship clause, which was put in place to reverse the Supreme Court’s pre-Civil War decision that black people were not citizens.)

    The Supreme Court has hewed closely to this understanding of citizenship by birth. In 1898, the court ruled in United States v. Wong Kim Ark that a man born in the U.S. to parents who were “subjects of the Emperor of China” was, according to the Fourteenth Amendment, a U.S. citizen by birth. In 1985, the court’s opinion in INS v. Rios-Pineda stated that the respondents, a married couple who were citizens of Mexico but residing in the U.S., “had given birth to a child, who, born in the United States, was a citizen of this country.” Lower courts have actually weighed in on the question of whether Obama qualifies as a natural-born citizen. In a 2009 ruling, the Indiana Court of Appeals cited Wong Kim Ark in stating that “persons born within the borders of the United States are ‘natural born Citizens’ for Article II, Section 1 purposes, regardless of the citizenship of their parents.”

    And there’s historical precedent. There have been at least four previous presidents with one parent born in a foreign country. Andrew Jackson’s father was born in Northern Ireland. James Buchanan’s father was born in Ireland, as was Chester A. Arthur’s. Herbert Hoover’s mother emigrated to the United States from Canada when she was 11 years old.

    A 2009 report from the Congressional Research Service on the definition of “natural-born citizen” concluded that the “weight of scholarly legal and historical opinion appears to support the notion that ‘natural born Citizen’ means one who is entitled under the Constitution or laws of the United States to U.S. citizenship ‘at birth’ or ‘by birth,’ including any child born ‘in’ the United States (other than to foreign diplomats serving their country).”

    As a side note: The post-birthers do have one Supreme Court ruling they can cite supporting the notion that certain persons born within the territorial United States are not entitled to the full privileges of citizenship, but it’s a case that hasn’t really been cited very much in the past 150 years.

  65. Senator John McCain’s mother gave birth to him in Panama — not one of the United States. Several years after his birth, a treaty between the U.S. and Panama grandfathered him into post-birth, naturalized American citizenship. Nonetheless, although ineligible for the office of President of the United States, the Republican party nominated him for the job, anyway. Barack Obama, the American citizen by birth, won the presidency in 2008, so the people of the United States never had to find out just how much the Republican party valued the Constitution. We already know the answer to that pseudo-question — not one damn thing (See Bush v. Gore 2000) — but sparing us yet another example of their baldfaced hypocrisy at least counts as something of a minor blessing.

  66. Ken McBride 1, March 13, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    If it is not vaginal probes invading women’s health and ravings about contraceptives, it is selling off the national treasures that are the National Parks! Is this really the 21st Century? As someone else noted, those who voted for this teabag clown are responsible!
    Only if the teabag clown revealed his real mindset during the campaign.

    Don’t blame your fellow citizens so quickly.

    The politicians who run for office today are hand chosen by the 1% machinations who have the money. Money talks and bullshit walks, remember.

    Once they are chosen they are told what to say during a campaign, and once they are elected they are told what to do, which are less and less similar as time moves backwards towards the age of ignorance.

    The people do not want to be plundered, sent to senseless wars to feed the greedy bastards, leave no world for their children, nor turn their country into a plutocracy.

    That has been done by the criminal 1% who are enslaving us even as we speak.

    Do not turn on your fellow citizens, those who have been fighting terrorism for 200 years, because that is what the 1% plutocrats want you to do so they can finish us off.

  67. As for President Obama’s miserable and inexcusable “budget priorities,” his bloated and incompetent Pentagon spent something like $20 billion in 2011 just on air conditioning tents and trailers for our military and associated mercenaries in Iraq and Afghanistan — more than the entire budget of NASA. And that white elephant monstrosity of an “embassy” in Baghdad will apparently suck up even more billions in the year ahead (until the panicked helicopter evacuations take place in the not-too-far-distant future). President Obama lives in such abject terror of Republicans and the Apartheid Zionist Entity (owners and operators of many politicians in his own party as well) that he cannot tell the difference between a true American interest and the next campaign contribution he hopes to solicit from his Wall Street golfing buddies.

  68. Elaine M. and MM,
    Coúld I have it etched in brass? Beautifully done.

    You too.
    Let’s not fight. Stop kicking each other. Kick the politicians and the 1 %.

  69. Elaine, the article contains the statement,,,

    “This argument takes full advantage of the fact that the framers of the Constitution never defined the term “natural-born citizen,” and the fact that the Supreme Court has never specifically defined it either.”

    He apparently hasn’t read Minor v. Happersett.

    Idealist, I told you. These people born to Mexican parents in L.A. hospitals everyday may be citizens, but they are not natural-born citizens as the Supreme Court defines it, and they are therefore constitutionally ineligible to become President.

  70. Bob Esquire, I understand that I don’t have justiciability with this, but I am not filing a court case. I am under no delusions that any court would ever rule in favor of my argument. That does not mean that the argument, on its face, is not sound. It’s a very simple argument based on a very simple Supreme Court opinion, which is why all the arguments against it seem to be either fallacious or procedural per current legal practices.

  71. The government does manage to make a buck or two from the land it owns. Since no one has mentioned it, there is always the Office of Natural Resources Revenue

    “The Office of Natural Resources Revenue — and its predecessor agency the Minerals Revenue Management Program – has collected and disbursed more than $210 billion since the program was originally created in 1982. Collections and disbursements averaged $7.5 billion during the last 28 years. In Fiscal Year 2009, the program disbursed $10.7 billion.”

    “The process begins as some federal lands are leased to individuals and companies for natural resources development. Lease holders competitively bid, initially pay a bonus, and subsequently rent, for the right to develop the resources on these onshore and offshore lands. Within the Department of the Interior, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement is responsible for offshore federal leasing, the Bureau of Land Management is responsible for federal onshore leasing, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs coordinates leasing on Indian lands.

    The ONRR acts on behalf of the American people to manage the royalties, rents, bonuses and other revenues generated throughout the leasing process. Using sophisticated, computerized accounting systems, ONRR processes, or collects, approximately $1 billion each month. Bonuses, rents and royalties from more than 62,000 leases can amount to several billion dollars each year ”

    If one really wants to get into all the minutia, one can spend months studying this.

  72. Bdaman 1, March 13, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    P.S. nice job on hijacking the thread. This thread is about Cliff Stearns and the idea of selling federal lands to pay down debt.
    They sell that land under false pretenses, saying it is part of a globe, part of global climate.

    Climate change is occurring … and poses significant risks to humans and the environment,” reports the National Academy of Sciences. As climate-change science moves in one direction, Republicans in Congress are moving in another. Why?

    Why are republicans in congress moving in The W Direction?

    Because they are well aware that a 5,000 year old flat planet cannot have anything “global”, because that is naturally an unbelievable shape for wise guys who have flatulence in this context.

  73. Many people who use the term “race card” do so because they are racists, perhaps some aren’t.

  74. “So we’ll sell the National Mall and turn it into Steans Strip Mall?”


    You know I can remember many a hot day strolling down the National Mall being thirsty, hungry and needing air conditioning. Perhaps if there were a McDonald’s located there I could have had a Whopper and a Coke, as I looked out upon the Washington Monument? That’s the ticket.

  75. Ron Paul Calls For Federal Public Lands To Be ‘Sold Off To Private Owners’
    By Scott Keyes and Lee Fang on Oct 21, 2011

    During a forum in Las Vegas Wednesday, Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) told the Republican audience he would like to see federal public lands in Nevada privatized.

    Speaking at the Western Republican Leadership Conference, Paul declared that Nevada, which has a large percentage of federally-owned public lands, ought to become more like Texas, where “private owners” have “developed all the natural resources.” Paul went on to say “how wonderful it would be if land will be or should be returned to the states and then for the best parts sold off to private owners”:

    PAUL: Take a look at the state of Nevada. Do the people own the property in Nevada? No. Who’s the biggest landowner? It’s the federal government. I would like to see the development of this state the way that Texas had the privilege of developing. Before we went in the Union, it was owned entirely by private owners and it has developed all the natural resources, a very big state. So you can imagine how wonderful it would be if land will be or should be returned to the states and then for the best parts sold off to private owners.

  76. “Do not turn on your fellow citizens, those who have been fighting terrorism for 200 years, because that is what the 1% plutocrats want you to do so they can finish us off.”


    Amen to that!

  77. Sorry I showed the clip of Stearns and brought the birther issue back. I was trying to show that he is a very very partisan republican.

  78. AY,

    I see what you are saying, the subtle silent attacks have started haven’t they? You never know who you can trust.

  79. Dredd:

    “That has been done by the criminal 1% who are enslaving us even as we speak.”

    Are you talking about congress and government?

  80. In re to Obama Sheriff Joe says the birth certificate and the selective service cards are forgeries. Wants it to be elevated to a criminal investigation. The funny part is the Hawaii Dept of Health is now refusing to release a birth certificate belonging to Tomiyo Sunahara. Her brother has made the request repeatedly for the long form birth certificate of his now deceased sister. In spite of having a tangible interest in the long form, the dept says he cant have it. Bill Ayers from his fugitive days was quoted in his book, the best way to steal someone’s identity is through a dead baby’s birth certificate.

  81. Bdaman:

    I thought it was greedy rich people. They built a ship that was destined to fail because of poor quality steel made brittle by the cold waters of the North Atlantic.

    You know how the 1% are, they take shortcuts on everything and end up screwing the rest of us. I am pretty sure they meant to kill all those poor people in steerage.

    By the way did you know that 100% of Japanese nationals on board survived? Or 100% of Mexican nationals on board died?

  82. bda,

    Really? I didn’t know that. Are you sure? I mean, I don’t know the history as well as the rest of you so I hope you’ll take my word for it as I wasn’t trying to be snarky.

    I always enjoyed his arguments and his explanations brought real clarity to confusing issues.

  83. Blouise,

    I’ve known Vince for some time and we still stay in touch. Vince told me he left because Bdaman was stalking him on the Internet and attempting to post personal information about him. I understand Bdaman once did the same thing to Mike S. too, but Mike being Mike was far more forgiving of it.

  84. I still am in favor of folks posting personal information, who wish to remain anonymous should be banned. Those that wish to cede anonymity should be able to. Those wishing to remain anonymous should be allowed that right….. There, my position. Even though some post with the real name I have not Google them up….. I know thats not the case with everyone. I will leave out all else…..

  85. Really Gene because as a new poster and guest contributor here you weren’t around when Vince Treacy was here. Hmmmmm you must of been posting as someone else.

  86. Woosty is right. But don’t stop there. End the low rents, as well as the subsidies and big tax breaks for no good reason visible to the naked eye. Add incremental taxes to curtail obscene profits. One of the main engines driving the prices is futures trading. That has to be brought under control.

  87. Poor Roosevelt is probably rolling in his grave. I love our national parks especially those in Virginia on the old battlefields. Virginia is such a gorgeous place.

  88. Ahhhh there’s that famous combination, Troll and Bdaman together again. Thanks Gene:) I must admit you’ve come along way. I thought you were slipping with conspiracy boy and chowder head but you must be spending alot more time in the do-jo:) Focus and breathe

  89. Or maybe you’re a little teste anonymous troll.

    That would sure explain a lot.

    You’re lucky all I did was call you an anonymous troll. Why? Well, because an anonymous troll is exactly what you’re acting like. If others have called you a troll in the past, well maybe, just maybe, that might be because you are one. I started of kind of neutral towards you. I even told you that if you were a troll you weren’t a very good one. Well, lucky for you, your performance over the last week has made me revise my opinion. You’re very much an anonymous troll. Your opinions should be weighted as such, which is to say, not very heavily if at all.

  90. Gene, let me remind you yet again that you are free to say whatever you like and I’m free to respond however I like. That is unless there something or someone compelling your actions. Those are factors under your control. How I respond to your pablum isn’t under your control.

    If you’ve got a problem with that, it is entirely your problem and please don’t you forget it.

  91. That was cute the first four times you did it.

    Personally, I’m still waiting for your proof on the Congressional Malpractice thread about me saying that weather isn’t climate.

  92. After reading the infighting amongst the commenters above I looked out at the moon. No not that. What makes you all snpe at each other so?
    We could save money or recoup some money by taking some things from Congress. Rent out the offices in the Capitol to lobbyist. They rest their feet in the Congressmen’s offices all day anyway. End CongressMedicare as we know it. End Congressional Penions. Make the Congress work 52 weeks a year with time off for good behavior. Cap the salary at 1980 levels and reduce them to said levels. Give them four assistants each. Senators get two. Put video cameras on K Street and C Street to record the comings and goings of Congress members. End junkets to any place other than prisons and hospitals. Literacy tests for Congress men and women. Birth certificates published on each member of Congress. Sobriety tests at the door of Congress before they can enter the hall.

  93. I too have been in contact with Vince off the blog and the stalking was a good part of the reason he left. The other parts though was he was interested in other sites and then too was bored. His boredom came from the fact that he totally trounced every argument Bdaman and the other birthers made, but they kept making them anyway. The fact is that they use Goebbels well known “Big Lie” technique, though many believe the crap they spew. I respect Bdaman’s intelligence too much to think he really believes his crap, he just enjoys pulling our chains. That’s why I barely glance at his stuff anymore because it has become so lame and repetitive, you’d almost think it was a script

  94. “……you’d almost think it was a script”

    What I said.
    Remember the psychiatrist program early 80’s which I tried out. It was a spoof of course. Fun. Reacted to key words in your response with canned phrases and questions. Said to have confused many proffs.

    Not claiming any copyright or ownership, just feeling good over the concept (or nearly so) exists. Does this auto program have a scientific name?

  95. Bdaman:

    “I ran him off Ms. Blouise. He got mad at me and left.”

    how did you run him off? If he left it was his decision to take.

    Some one who could take on Fritz Hollings (if I remember correctly) isnt going to be intimidated by an anonymous poster on a blog.

    If he is, then maybe he didnt really take on Fritz Hollings.

    “If a Senator could not scare me, why should I worry about a lot of anonymous trolls and sock puppets.”

    Vince Treacy

  96. Idealist707, the “therapist” program is called Eliza.

    It is loosely based on the theory and style of client centered therapy developed by Carl Rogers.

  97. Thats right Bron, my real names is Francis Sawyer but everybody calls me stalker. Any of you guys call me Francis and I’ll kill ya.

  98. Listen up, this should go to show you that I’m a bad man. Take a grown man one dem up town lawyer type folk who’s be an accomplished attorney and make him run like a dog who done seen a ghost. I’m a bad man.

  99. ooooooooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhh……..

    you can chase the moon….for me, light dawns;

    ‘Goebbels’s use of the expression

    Later, Joseph Goebbels put forth a slightly different theory which has come to be more commonly associated with the expression “big lie.” Goebbels wrote the following paragraph in an article dated 12 January 1941, 16 years after Hitler’s first use of the phrase “big lie,” titled “Aus Churchills Lügenfabrik” and translated “From Churchill’s Lie Factory.” It was published in Die Zeit ohne Beispiel.

    The essential English leadership secret does not depend on particular intelligence. Rather, it depends on a remarkably stupid thick-headedness. The English follow the principle that when one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.[2]

  100. Bdaman 1, March 13, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    Hey Dredd did you know climate change sunk the Titanic?
    You seem to be deactivating based on my link upthread to The W Direction, where I show some new evidence about the Titanic mistakes made by the 1% who owned and operated her.

    Who now own the oil industry, and are still saying what psychopaths have said since the 13th Century.

    There was and is severe flatulence within their brains that gassed their cognition to death, even as they uttered the order to the captain, “full steam ahead so we don’t sink”, which caused the Titanic to sink very quickly compared to what would have happened had they gone full stop.

    You know the drill, there is no global warming on a flat planet, and you know that there is no global anything on a 5,000 – 7,000 year old flat planet.

  101. Okay, I’m a little confused. Is it Mike Spindell or Vince Treacy that is supposed to be Buddha Is Laughing now? Who is it going to be next? My vote is on Elaine. She’s a librarian and everyone knows librarians are crafty.

  102. Bron your memory serves you well. He kept on and on about he was listed in the book and I/anybody was free to look him up so I took him to task on that. Vince treacy was scared of no one, a ruthless advesary one that deserved alot of respect hence the reason I always addressed him as Mr. Treacy. I was being facetios when I said I ran him off. If in fact what Gene aka BIL and Mike say is true he is less of a man than I thought for retreating instead of staying in the figh to the finish.

  103. Sometimes when the conversation is not going the direction you wish, we implement the steering committee.

  104. Bdaman,

    “If in fact what Gene aka BIL and Mike say is true he is less of a man than I thought for retreating instead of staying in the figh to the finish.”

    Less of a man because he decided not to waste his time arguing with you? I think not. Besides, there is no finish with you.

  105. I assume the “God” sockpuppet is all knowing as we learned in catholic school. No wonder Vince Treacy left. The sockpuppets are extremely boring and their names are getting more and more ridiculous.

  106. Thread jacking can come in numerous forms, as for sock puppets, it is a well known fact. Just reporting back to the steering committe the full report.

  107. “If in fact what Gene aka BIL and Mike say is true he is less of a man than I thought for retreating instead of staying in the figh to the finish.”


    What Gene and I are saying is true, but with your casual disdain for the truth you do overlook one aspect of what I stated:

    “His [Vince’s] boredom came from the fact that he totally trounced every argument Bdaman and the other birthers made, but they kept making them anyway. The fact is that they use Goebbels well known “Big Lie” technique, though many believe the crap they spew.”

    As Elaine said above there is no “finish” with you. Every birther untruth you spouted was disposed of handily by Vince, but you simply ignored the facts and kept posting the lies and false arguments, while never bothering to refute Vince’s statements. At what point does someone need to keep arguing with you, when you don’t respond by at least attempting to refute their argument?

    Now as far as who Gene is or isn’t, I think that given your known history of false identities and sock-puppetry you certainly aren’t the one to talk. Gene is a real person and he has his real picture on Facebook. As for you, except that you have used multiple identities, what do we know. You say you are Black. You say your mother was ill. You say you are married with children.
    You say that you work in weather. We’ve accepted you at your word and perhaps you are really who you purport to be, or perhaps not. Maybe you see myself and others as fools for believing you you. If that is the case it is on your conscience not ours. As I’ve written I’ve come to basically ignore you because of your mindless repetitiveness, but your thread-jacking has become increasingly obnoxious. Try being less the troll and more the person, you might get better response, or not. The comment below was posted on the Congress/EPA thread.

  108. Bdaman,

    Another “threadjack”. Well played. The story was about air pollution, not climate change, but again it becomes all about Bdaman. One would think that “air pollution” might be something of interest to all. Given that certain American cities, such as LA have had smog issues to the point of becoming cliched. As I remember one of the concerns of the Beijing Olympics was the poor air quality due to over industrialization of that great city. “Global Warming” and/or “Climate Change” may be seen by some as wrong thinking, but surely local pollution is of interest to all of us.

    Apparently not to you and Bron, who both have their heads so far up their asses of the industrial elite that you would sacrifice the health of your and/or others children to ensure that their bottom line is not affected. For men who one would think consider themselves independent thinkers the motivation for this would seem tenuous. However, we come to realize that both of you are really not interested in specific issues and their resolutions per se, but are intellectually the equals of those crazy Northern NFL fans, who go bare-chested in 10 degree weather, painted with their team colors, screaming drunkenly that the Refs got it wrong.

    It is sad really that we can’t have a dialogue involving the full spectrum of political opinion. As someone who has been here for a long time and therefore knows all the players and their thinking, the stalwarts on this blog, come from all over the political spectrum. The constant has been Jonathan, whose interest is not in the politics of issues, but in their adherence to Constitutional principles. This is not a liberal blog, or a conservative blog, but merely a place where different viewpoints can be expressed with some depth of reasoning.

    The dialogue has been made harder by both of you since like those crazy football fanatics, you endlessly root for your home team in the inane chanting of the true believer. Over the years though the difference has been that Bron (a man of many identities) has frequently viewed particular issues with a much more nuanced tone. You Bdaman, have not done nuance particularly well and at times, one of which we two know well, have gone beyond the bounds of decency. Your usual maneuver, since I’ve come to know your style so well, is to lamely reply “just “funning” with Ya”, whenever you become frustrated by the demolition of your premises.

    It’s really getting old and boring Bdaman, as I wrote last night on another thread. Nothing will be done about your trolling since we don’t censor here, but like myself what will happen is that everyone will just cease to pay any attention to your scripted remarks and then you will just be howling in the wind.

    A few final points to be made though. You certainly have a need to keep bringing up Buddha, seemingly offended by what you deem to be sneaky legerdemain. Perhaps you might contemplate your own excesses when you call people liars. Perhaps for those who don’t know a little blog history needs retelling, since one of the problems people seem to have these days is a blank memory of even the recent past and because acts of contrition and the resultant forgiveness, quickly become forgotten by the contrite.

    Around three years ago you used a anti-Jewish slur towards me, due to your frustration over an argument between us. Faced with a tremendous response of condemnation, led by Buddha, you apologized for it. I accepted your apology. Two other things began happening at a somewhat later point, one was the severe illness of your mother and the second was the increased failure of my heart. During those times of anguish and pain for both of us, we each reached out to the other in sympathy/empathy. The entire community here also reached out to you in your time of travail with Mom and in a sense that was when in revealing your human side you ceased to be identified as a troll and were accepted into the community.

    It was the humanity of your pain that gave rise to the different feeling we all had towards you. You stopped being the repetitive troll and became a human being sharing the frailty all of us humans share. Despite your anonymous identity, you became real to us. This blog in its content has always bee about the human condition and its foibles. One doesn’t have to expose their real identities to be able to be identified with, merely show some authenticity in their behavior. I must say that lately you’ve again fallen into a production of in-authenticity and not only is the real person behind the Bdaman identity lost, but you do your causes little good because in their endless repetition of talking points people cease to take your seriously.

  109. I am sorry but that role is already taken. Please be advised that you can place your name on the waiting list or take a number.

  110. Gene,

    “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.” Albert Einstein

  111. “So this thread…is predominantly about…nostalgia for past threads and former commenters?

    Bob Kauten,
    Nostalgia for the past is not my thing. However, I feel some investment here, being an old-timer and a guest blogger. My concern is for this blog to draw in people from all viewpoints, who can discuss various issues intelligently, yourself for instance. Our dedication here is to have an open forum with the absolute minimum of censorship. This does make this blog subject to people who basically use the blog as a vehicle to promote propaganda, but then that is the price of free speech. The means of being seen as a regular on this blog, rather than the insularity of other sites, is merely to comment regularly. Once in a while some of our long term commenters need a gentle reminder that they are taking undue advantage. There are no threats implied in these reminders, merely a call to decency, which may or may not be heeded without penalty.

  112. Bdaman:

    Vince Treacy finished the fight. He was not run off. He has other things to do.

    Neil Davis:

    You are late to the birther debate. It was thoroughly and responsibly covered on this blog. If you have the time, pull it up and read it. Second, Minor v. Happersett may not properly be cited as authority for the definition of “natural-born citizen” because that was not the issue before the Court. The case concerned whether the fact of citizenship included the right to vote. All of the discussion you refer to was unnecessary to support the Court’s conclusion. Do not make the mistake of assuming that one will find solid scholarship on the free republic, native born citizen and similar birther sites.

  113. If that was directed at me….I will answer….I respect Vince….Vince has the cajones to say what he thinks….and with conviction….Just as all who post here can get irritated with another’s position and not agreeing with everything we say or they say…..we can still be civil to each other on other threads…That is a learn ability .

  114. Bob Kauten

    So this thread…is predominantly about…nostalgia for past threads and former commenters?



    You’re right … again.

  115. Getting to the point of the topic, Rep. Stearns’ suggestion, like most of what he says, is absurd. I may be able to meet the next mortgage payment by selling the contents of my house at a garage sale, but then what. Arizona sold its state capitol and a couple other buildings for $81,000,000.00 a couple of years ago, and now wants to buy them back, which will cost more than they what they got for them.

    Second, we are talking about an important part of the nation’s heritage. There are hopefully many generations to come long after Rep. Stearns has died and his limited accomplishments forgotten. This is just another bad idea from a party that apparently never runs out of bad ideas.

  116. OS,
    Thanks for the tip on Eliza, and especially the basis on which is was founded. May I presume a certain expertise on your part?

    As for our commenter Bdaman; I have analyzed to a small degree and a very short time and grown tired in the same way as most have already mentioned.

    If we presume that at one time he was programmed by the creator or disciples of the creator, of Eliza—–what challenges would it have to face in trolling this blog.
    So far I detect none, although I stopped programming in 1974.
    The multiple opponents, no problem. Knowing that it is addressed. No sweat. Holding a line—–we see so well how he does that, repeating again and again from a very large data base, using key word search, and if that is less that “good” falling back on standard replies to use ad infinitum.
    The data base can either be refreshed manually or by a special program coupled to a feed from a custom search program on Google. Just like I wrote about in connection with searching for Jewish names—-an onling facility which used such a custom Google search.

    I could go on—–just as he does, but don’t, in contrast, wish to bore you.
    Am I smart, no—but as has been said, we each, if we are real people, have a unique experience and knowledge reservoir.

    His owner is, of course, someone who checks its internal merit stats in term of replies, repliers use of words indicating anger, etc. He gets his jollies that way. He might even read a bit from the transcript.

    As for being on multiple threads, even in the 70’s we had reentrant coding——-no sweat.

    So, ignore him is my advice—–unless you get your daily dose of some hormone by charging up on his stupid “script” as Mike S calls it.

    It just a self-running program. Don’t you know the geeks, etc think this is just a ball. If you had Anonymous (not ours) contacts you could download a free copy to customize. The geeks particularly like it when they can install them in the WH and Pentagon circles at high level. Tapping into the transcript is FUNNNNNN!!!!! Details on request.

    Can somebody teach me how to write the above in 5 sentences or less?

  117. Mike A,
    “This blog in its content has always bee about the human condition and its foibles.”
    Can we expect good ideas, according to our criteria, to come from egotistical maxed people/parties/corporatins?

  118. Mike, Blouise,

    Sorry, I shouldn’t be so critical. You guys have a past together. I was mostly baffled by references to the past, and by all of these personality conflicts. I inferred a lot of resentment.

    I couldn’t make sense of it. But I don’t have to.

    It’s like dropping in on any other big family. Your relationships evolved while I wasn’t present.

    No, I don’t mean to divert the conversation into the Theory of Evolution.

    I say all of this in warmth and fuzziness, thought I don’t mean to divert the conversation into Global Warming.

  119. Bob Kauten,

    “Sorry, I shouldn’t be so critical.”

    If there was any implied criticism on your part, it was gentle and constructive. I looked upon your comment as an accurate observation.

    Stick around and you, too, can have a “past”. 😉

  120. Idealist 707 asks, “Thanks for the tip on Eliza, and especially the basis on which is was founded. May I presume a certain expertise on your part?”


    You might say that. Heh!

  121. The national parks was the best idea America ever had. It is what this country is founded on. I’m ASHAMED that this man calls himself a representitive in this nation. He should be removed IMMEDIATELY. He is obviously a MORON and not American.

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