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  • dannyboystories 4:22 PM on August 4, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    What were they really thinking? 

    Much has been written about America’s Founding Fathers–the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, and, of course, the Constitution of the United States of America–but do you wonder what men like Washington, Jefferson, Adams, and the others were thinking privately? What was going on in their minds that has not been reported from notes and memoirs?

    I have always been infatuated by Colonial America, particularly the 1770’s and 80’s. I have read the Federalist Papers–the published arguements in favor of the newly proposed Constitution. I have read many biographies, including my favored Benjamin Franklin autobiography, trying to understand these Colonial Patriots fully.

    The Constitution was approved by only 39 of the 55 deligates to the Constitutional Convention, only a couple more than a two-thirds majority. The United States came very close to failing in its first organizational endeavor.

    After reading so much material over the years, and the brilliance of the Constitution itself, I prefer the romantic version of events, that the men who toiled, cajoled, and argued the Constitution were in the presence of the guiding hand of God. Fortunately, my emotional position cannot be prooved or disprooved. My devotion to these United States is steadfast, guided by the very words set down by the framers themselves.

    It is amazing to me how such and odd collection of Colonial Patriots could have foreseen so much, and crafted a nation of laws that has exceeded the expectations of many. Of course, the United States is a Representative Republic, not a true majority rules democracy. As a result, the little towns and counties abroad have nearly as much sway in matters as the most populous.

    I like it that way. It provides a checks and balances perhaps not envisioned by the Founders. In addition, liberties and freedoms have had more protection in the past than most realize. There are those who would change the Constitution to fit what they say is a change in society. I submit changes proposed do not stand the test of honesty, and will help doom this nation.

    Today, too many citizens are driven by those old sins: Greed, Jealously, and Hate. Further, it seems to me a large majority of the population knows little about the forming of this nation, or what the Constitution actually says to protect we citizens.

    When was the last time, if ever, YOU actually sat down and read the Constitution? Do you know the constraints placed upon our elected representatives?

    The ballot box is the final control over our elected officials, but nowadays it seems elections are too far away to prevent overstepping by those we have elected. Is our knowledge to be guided by polls? Are our officials often much too impressed with their position of importance to pay heed to the people for whom they work?

    Our Federal Government is now so burdensome and giagantic, in my view, it is inefficient and far too expensive, regulating much too closely to liberties we hold dear. Partisan politics plays a far too important role in our Federal Government.

    It is high time we citizens stepped back, and took a hard look at what we have allowed to happen that was NOT the intention of the Founding Fathers. — D. C. “Dan” Lee, Danny Boy Stories

    Enough JPG Qtr Size

    constitution1

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  • dannyboystories 3:29 AM on July 30, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Have you ever killed a rabbit? 

    Perhaps most people would agree war is Hell. It is an horrendous exercise of inhumanity wreaked upon others. Nevertheless, from time to time war becomes a result of an inability to see eye-to-eye with others.

    War is, of course, not necessarily an inevitability. It is, in my view, the result of greed, jealousy, and hate, one to another. Some would say there are times armed conflict becomes necessary to put the neighborhood bully in his place, so to speak, to thwart the continuation of an infestation one nation on another.

    War today attempts to be different, to surgically limit battle to warring armies, insulating “innocent” civilians through the use of pinpoint accuracy munitions. There is a worldwide hue and cry when an occasional errant bomb or rocket drifts off course killing or injuring civilians. But, can war be individualized in this manner? Is it only the warring armies who are responsible for the battle?

    Bombing runs during World War 2 sought to limit damage to enemy factories or military installations, but bombs could not be guided back then. When the B-29, B-25, or B-17 bomber released its deadly load over a target, fully half the bombs struck beyond the sighted factory or installation. Civilians were directly involved in the explosive mayhem that ensued. In those days and previously, it was impossible to avoid civilian casualties. Too, it is clear enemies in past wars intentionally sought to rain terror on a civilian population–consider Germany’s Buzz Bombs of WW2 randomly targeting London.

    Can it be said the United States never intentionally targeted civilians? No. Consider the singular bombs that all but eliminated Hiroshima and Nagasaki. More than 100,000 were killed, either by the atomic blast or radiation that ensued in a mere split second. Apparently, then, it cannot be said the Japanese military was defeated, the entire country was brought to its knees.

    Try as we may, it seems war cannot be limited to the conflict between trained military units. At some point, God forbid, the supporting civilian population of an enemy must eventually be considered.

    Raw Army recruits in basic bayonet training many years ago, quickly learned the stark reality of kill or be killed. War is uncivilized in that no one is spared altogether. In one way or another, and in due time, we are all impacted by international conflict. Yet, war still comes, and may be inevitable in more instances than we chose to believe.

    “So, hush little baby, don’t you cry. You know your daddy’s born to die. But, all my trials Lord, will soon be over.” [from An American Trilogy] — D. C. “Dan” Lee. http://www.dannyboystories.com

    Dead Rabbit

     
  • dannyboystories 3:39 AM on July 25, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    What happened to the “Big Dog”? 

    The United States of America has stood as a formidable nation in the world for more than 200 years. While Americans have generally not sought conflict, a list of wars in which the U.S. has been a participant primarily documents victories for the nation throughout its history.

    A review of “wars” involving the United States demonstrates America has generally been late to the fight, slow to join the shooting. In modern history the nation has been looked upon, not as a bully, but to be shown respect. American strength has often been considered by rogue nations before conflict exceeds national borders. The mere presence of American influence has been a deterrent to those who would attempt international mischief.

    In many ways, the United States has been the “Big Dog” in the neighborhood, one to be reckoned with by those who would consider causing trouble the rest. Apparently, that is no longer the case. It now appears America has been all but neutered in the neighborhood of nations, no longer a cause for concern by those with ambitions beyond their own borders.

    The first indication American influence would be diluted came, it seems, when newly elected President Barack Obama made his so-called “Apology Tour” of Europe and the Mid-East. It was a signal to friend and foe alike that the United States no longer was to be considered the “cop on the beat”, a deterrent to broader conflict, the “Big Dog” on the block.

    Abandonment of the planned NATO missile defense system in Eastern Europe was the icing on the cake for nation mischief makers, primarily Russia. America’s “Peace through Strength” initiative was gone. The free-for-all signal was lit. America’s bargaining chip in negotiations for peace anywhere disappeared.

    Apparently the resulting absence of the “Big Dog” in the neighborhood has been a resurgence of mischief makers in the world of nations. The Middle East is a tinder box with no fewer than four major conflicts currently underway. Rogue nations who might be timid in their approach are now emboldened. In Europe, Russia has begun furthering their influence in what many believe is an attempt to re-instate the former Soviet Republic.

    All of this because the American “Big Dog” is no longer a consideration for peace. — D. C. “Dan” Lee.   

     
  • dannyboystories 2:50 PM on July 24, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: federal bureaucracy, federal employees, government employees, Indiana   

    The Tail is Wagging the Dog! 

    It occurs to me, given the current Internal Revenue Service fiasco targeting conservative organizations and the Department of Veteran Affairs hospital agency allowing veterans to die while awaiting treatment, the burgeoning federal bureaucracy may be totally out of the control of management. Furthermore, it appears the IRS and VA mismanagement may only be the tip of the iceberg, with many other agencies remaining to be found out.

    There were 2.65 million federal employees as of 2010.

    It is clear to me the Congress cannot provide the oversight necessary, notwithstanding most members are busy working hard to maintain their individual power and prestige, rather than take care of the people’s business in a judicious manner. It is symptomatic of the Washington Beltway. The House, controlled by the Republicans, have passed a number of bills. The Senate, controlled by the Democrats, refuse to give even cursory recognition to those bills. Thus the partisan operation of the Congress has resulted in nothing of consequence to be adopted or approved since the November 2010 mid-year elections.

    The log-jammed business of the people in the vast bureaucracy existing today has not occurred overnight, or even in the last couple of decades.

    The results of this mind-boggling morass of federal offices, departments and sub-departments and divisions is inherently wasteful. Consider those nasty little earmarks politicians enter every character of bill in order to garner favor from their constituents. Example 1: Thousands of dollars earmarked for a by-pass route around Columbus, Indiana, continues unused after many years. Why. The earmark cited the wrong highway! Example 2: A $50,000 needed earmark for a Chapman Lakes, Indiana, wetlands levee renewal project goes unused more than 6 years later because the earmark named the Corps of Engineers the recipient. The Corps could not figure out how to transfer the funds to the State of Indiana Department of Natural Resources! [ Indiana figured out how to do the project internally with its own funds and completed the work. ] The earmarked funds languishing in the federal coffers totals in the millions. Go ahead, look it up!

    I cite the above incompetence to demonstrate just how out of control the burgeoning federal bureaucracy has become.

    Have you ever paid attention to the “titles” in an agency or division? There are directors, assistant directors of every kind and character. Look it up, friends. There are project divisions, budget divisions, future planning divisions, long range planning divisions, and assistant divisions to those divisions. In looking at bureaucratic structure, it appears, at least to me, all these layers of departmentalization serve only one purpose: Providing a higher tier of wages for those who populate the offices.

    The following table [ forbes.com ] shows the number of government employees, total population and the GE/P Ratio. It essentially takes a snapshot at the end of each presidents term and compares it to the point when they took office.

    End of Term

    Date

    # Government Employees (GE)

    Population (P)

    GE/P Ratio

    Obama

    Dec. 2012

    21,925

    315,255

    6.9%

    GW Bush

    Dec. 2008

    22,555

    306,004

    7.4%

    Clinton

    Dec. 2000

    20,804

    283,696

    7.3%

    GHW Bush

    Dec. 1992

    18,878

    258,413

    7.3%

    Reagan

    Dec. 1988

    17,736

    246,056

    7.2%

     

    “Notice how the GE/P Ratio held steady for Obama’s predecessors, hovering around 7.3%. However, by the end of Obama’s first term, the ratio fell to 6.9%, a decrease of 7% from the end of the Bush era. To glean the full picture, we’ll need to look at the percentage increase for the population and for the number of government employees. If the population increases by a rate similar to the increase in government employment, that would be expected. From 1980 to 2008, the percentage increase in total government employees at the end of each of their terms (compared to when they took office), was between 6.4% and 10.2%. This is relatively close to the percentage increase in the population over the same period (5.0% to 9.8%). However, during Obama’s first term, the population increased by 3.0% while the number of government employees fell by 7%. This is the reason for the decline in the GE/P Ratio shown above.” (emphasis added)– [ Mike Patton, forbes.com ]

    You needn’t resort to statistics to know the bureaucracy is out of control. Call a major department of the federal government with a simple question. Keep track of to how many people/offices you were transferred, and how long was your call? It’s a simple exercise, try it!

    If you count the red and blue states, Democrats vs. Republicans, it is worth your while to search the comparative “number of federal employees by state”. Get the message?

    Mark Twain said: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.” I submit to you Mark Twain was correct in that figures and statistics are used by every bureaucratic agency to confound Congress and the taxpayers in order to pad its own departmental size and budget.

    It seems to me those Tea Party folks had it right when they said, “Reduce the size of the government.” It is likely why so many politicians dislike the Tea Party groups. After all, federal employees make up a substantial voting block, and their unions have plenty of money to spread around. — D. C. “Dan” Lee, Citizen-Taxpayer. Do YOU have your taxpayer T-shirt? http://www.hoosierpatriots.org.

     
  • dannyboystories 1:39 PM on June 4, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Follow this suggestion… 

    Enough JPG Qtr Size

     
  • dannyboystories 4:18 PM on April 23, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Testing, testing…1, 2, 3, … 

    Testing, testing…1, 2, 3, ….

     
  • dannyboystories 11:30 AM on April 19, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    One Can’t Stop Eating! 

    One Can’t Stop Eating!.

     
  • dannyboystories 8:11 AM on March 7, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    The Precipice We Face! 

    The Precipice We Face!.

     
  • dannyboystories 8:15 AM on December 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    On the Horizon. 

    On the Horizon..

     
  • dannyboystories 1:13 PM on November 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    GOP is Dead? 

    GOP is Dead?.

     
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