Monday, July 23, 2012

Does Obama Accept Blame For Aurora?

This article was originally going to ponder President Obama’s off-the-cuff remarks in Roanoke. While revealing his belief that government is the fountainhead of all opportunity, he also exposed the serious flaw of Statism: if the individual is not responsible for his own success but is rather dependent on the existence of the State, then why isn’t everyone successful? Obama implied that teachers and roads and bridges and the Internet (all in his mind government creations) are responsible for an individual’s success. So why isn’t everyone successful?

In fact, if Obama’s sworn enemy, the 1% (who nonetheless donate millions to his reelection), were truly successful only because of government, then government has a 99% failure rate and should be abolished immediately as a horribly wasteful experiment.

That’s what this article would have been about. Then came Aurora. A dropout from a doctoral program planned an elaborate solo terror slaughter of a dozen people who did nothing to him but attend a midnight movie that he decided to attack.

The tragedy was immediately and cynically exploited by Democrats such as Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who demanded gun bans--another failed statist plan that leads to such disarmed-victim killing fields as Columbine and Aurora. The counter-argument--that there weren’t enough guns inside that theater that night--barely gets any coverage at all amid the cries to surrender essential liberties in the name of illusory security.

So now the question is this: if President Obama thinks the State is responsible for the success of businessmen, is it also responsible for the murders in Aurora? After all, the killer used the Internet to order his ammunition and he didn’t create the Internet. Government research created the Internet so that he could buy ammo on it. He didn’t invent ballistic armor--somebody else made that happen. He didn’t pave the road that he drove on to the Century theater--somebody invested in roads and bridges. He didn’t think up the explosive devices on his own--government schools gave him the scientific training and research skills to learn how to make bombs.

If individuals are not responsible for their own success--if the State makes individual virtue possible--then individuals are not responsible for their own evils. The State makes individual vice possible, too. So if Obama wants the electorate to think that government is the engine of success and he--as president--deserves praise for individual success, then he must also accept responsibility for mass murders such as those in Aurora. If not, why not?

Friday, April 06, 2012

Marine Disciplined for Stating the Law?

Marine Sgt. Gary Stein is facing separation hearings for running the Armed Forces Tea Party Facebook page. One of the statements he made was that he would not obey an illegal order from Barack Obama. However, he is fully in accordance with both his oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign or domestic, and the Universal Code of Military Justice section 16c(1)(c):

Lawfulness. A general order or regulation is lawful unless it is contrary to the Constitution, the laws of the United States, or lawful superior orders or for some other reason is beyond the authority of the official issuing it.

The Founders recognized that an American's fealty should be to ideas and to Liberty, not to Authority. Any authority--even a president--is subservient to the central principles enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution and any order that contravenes those principles is invalid and need not, must not, be obeyed. This UCMJ section was taught to me by Lt. Skinner, who contrasted an American soldier's obligation to disobey illegal orders with the the lack of any such option for a German soldier in WWII. "I was only following orders," he pointed out, was not a valid defense for any member of the American military.

Sgt. Gary Stein should not be forced out of the Marines for stating, promoting, and defending one of America's most fundamental concepts: that every citizen must learn, understand, and defend Liberty, even if that means defying the State.