Archive for March, 2011

Medical Marijuana, Constitutional?

March 30, 2011

     Someone over on my other article brought up the topic of, where in the Constitution is marijuana deemed illegal.

    Well of course the Constitution doesn’t address the legality of marijuana.

    During the discussion of whether the state of Delaware should legalize medical marijuana or not, the discussion naturally had to turn to the total legalization of marijuana. Since that is the end game of many who support SB17.

   Many have attempted to criticize myself and others who oppose SB17, by asking how anyone who calls themself a conservative, can want the government to regulate pot.

  First let me assure those people, I am anything but a big government person. I do believe that we need a smaller government presences in our lives. This does not mean, no government. That my friends, is anarchy. Some libertarian types border on this very dangerous ideology.

   Many in the political arena have taken the idea that to appeal to the TEA movement, that they must repeat over and over again that all government is bad.

     Now to address the matter of the Constitution and legalizing marijuana. Just as the Constitution does not make pot illegal, neither does it guarantee that it should be , or will be legal.

   I would send those searching the Constitution for guidance on the issue of Delaware’s SB17 to the 10th Amendment.

   Since the Constitution is not designed to address this issue, then it is a state matter. The Constitution allows the states to decide. That is what is happening here in Delaware. We are debating whether we want to move in the direction of legalizing marijuana in our state.

    I might add that the federal government has no authority to make anything illegal within any given state. The federal laws are unconstitutional and should be struck down. And then allow each state to decide.

  If people are unhappy with the outcome within their home state, and they just have to smoke pot, then they are free to move to another state that has made marijuana legal.

   The Constitution really has no play in this debate about whether SB17 should pass or fail, other than to guarantee that the state of Delaware has the right and the power to decide for itself.

Joe Biden Says, ” President Can Be Impeached For Waging Undeclared War”

March 27, 2011

  This is what Joe Biden said back in 2007 about a president that takes the country to war without congressional approval. Wonder what he is saying today?

Delaware ! Is This Where You Want To Live ?

March 26, 2011

      Needle exchange program !

      Lower sentences, for larger amounts of drugs !

      On the path to legalize marijuana !

       Expansion of gambling !

       Laws that challenge the traditional values of marriage !

       Sanctuary towns for illegal immigrants !

        It would seem that Delaware is on a path of societal degradation. That those who are elected to lead, are leading in the wrong direction.

Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf Defends SB17 On WGMD

March 25, 2011

   Today on WGMD the guest host Steve Bryant, who is sitting in for Jared Morris, was discussing Delaware’s SB 17 legislation. This is the bill that would legalize medical use of marijuana.

    Mr. Bryant is currently undergoing chemotherapy for throat cancer. But since Mr. Bryant lives in Nashville, the passage of this law in Delaware would not benefit him directly. It is understandable that Mr. Bryant would be in favor of the legalization of marijuana, for medical use.

   I called in to give my views of why I feel that passage of SB 17 would set a dangerous precedent. I am on record as to why I feel this way.

   The really interesting part of the discussion on WGMD came about fifteen minutes after my call. That is when Delaware, Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf called in, to defend SB 17.  He made all of the usual points that those who support legalizing medical marijuana make. He spoke about the need to pass legislation so as to ease the pain of those suffering from the effects of cancer treatment and other illnesses.

   Nothing groundbreaking in anything  Rep. Schwartzkopf said. That is until he related a personal story about someone he is close to, who is suffering from the effects of cancer treatment. In relating this story, Mr. Schwartzkopf made mention of the fact that the husband of this person was forced to go out and buy marijuana illegally on the street.

   This is quite a revelation. First it would seem as if Rep.Schwartzkopf believes that we need to pass SB 17, so that some people will no longer be “forced”  to go out and break existing laws.

   This brings me to my point.  That a sitting legislator has admitted to knowing of illegal activity, and seems to condone it, and actually seems to feel that it is justified.

  There is an ethical question here.  Rep. Schwartzkopf is not a judge, whose job it is to interpret laws or to overturn laws.

  Rep. Schwartzkopf takes an oath as a member of the General Assembly to,

   ” uphold and defend the Constitutions of my Country and my State, so help me God.”

   This would seem to mean, to also uphold the laws of both the state and the country.

   He has every right and duty to work to change laws that his constituents have made clear that they wish to have changed. But as long as a law is on the books, it is his sworn duty to respect and to protect the rule of law.

   The oath of office also states , “I further swear (or affirm) always to place the public interests above any special or personal interests“. 

   It would seem that Rep. Schwartzkopf has allowed his personal feeling for the person suffering from the treatment of their cancer, to cloud his judgement about right and wrong. He has admitted on live radio that he has turned a blind eye towards an illegal act.

   By doing this, by ignoring, condoning and allowing this illegal act to happen, it would seem that Rep. Schwartzkopf may have crossed an ethical boundary.

   This is the danger when our legislators allow their personal feelings, emotions and desires to cloud their decisions. We can little afford for our laws to be based on individual experiences of each legislator. Our government must be representative of our society as a whole.  Our laws must reflect the mores of our nation. To legislate based on the heart-rending emotions of watching someone you love suffer is a dangerous thing. Our elected officials must be able to keep separate their personal feeling from their public responsibilities.

   This is not the first time that Rep. Schwartzkopf has allowed his personal experiences to effect his public decisions in the General Assembly.

    Several years ago Mr. Schwartzkopf donated a kidney to a close family friend. This is the act of a selfless person. It shows great character on Mr. Schwartzkopf’s part. However, shortly thereafter Rep. Schwartzkopf proposed a bill that would have created an opt-out program at the DMV for organ donors. Instead of the current opt-in program. Basically this program would have resulted in many people becoming donors, possibly by mistake. The bill failed. I believe that Rep. Schwartzkopf again was moved by his personal emotions.

   Rep. Schwartzkopf and every other elected official, are elected to represent the people’s views on issues, they are not there to impose their own.

   I will leave it up to those, whose responsibility it is, to decide whether Rep. Schwartzkopf has crossed any ethical boundaries or not. I will only say that it is troubling when we learn that an elected official has knowingly allowed illegal acts to take place for any reason.

  And just in case anyone needs to read the oath of office, here is a link.

  http://delcode.delaware.gov/constitution/constitution-15.shtml

Code Hypocrites

March 23, 2011

  Back when President Bush announced that the United States would be going to war with Iraq, he did it from the Oval Office. When Pres. Obama announced that we would be going to war with Libya, he did it from a foreign country.

  During and following the war in Iraq, Pres. Bush was attacked and condemned as a war criminal by the radicalized far left. One of the loudest anti-Bush groups was Code Pink: Women For Peace.

   This group led marches in the Capital calling for the President to be impeached. They protested outside the private residences of the Bush administration  carrying coffins. They disrupted congressional hearings by sneaking in and then shouting at the committees. They even went as far as trying to smear red paint on Secretary of State Rice.

  At the time Code Pink announced that they were against all wars. That they believed that all conflict should be ended through peaceful means. That is an honorable goal, if a bit unrealistic.

   But where is Code Pink today? Where are their protest of Pres. Obama, now that he has taken the United States to war with Libya? Have they attempted to interrupt any congressional hearing? Not that I have heard about. Have they been seen outside V.P. Biden’s residence? Again, if so, it has not been reported. Has any Code Pink activist been recorded attempting to smear red paint on Secretary of State Clinton? You would think that if they had, it would have been big news.

  They have been seen outside the Libyan Embassy protesting Libya’s conduct against its own people. 

   Co-founder and spokes person Medea Benjamin did appear on Fox Business and again stated that Code Pink was protesting the conduct of Libya’s leader Muammar Gaddafi. And went as far, as to say, that countries should stop selling dictators weapons. But no condemnation of Pres. Obama, no call for impeachment, no accusations of him being a war criminal for killing innocent civilians with U.S. air strikes.

  Ms. Benjamin also wrote a short article that can be found on Code Pink’s website about the conflict in Libya. http://codepink.org/blog/2011/03/fox-news-video-codepinks-medea-benjamin-speaks-out-on-libya/ In it she again calls on nations to stop selling arms to dictators. In it she mentions Pres. Obama only once. And did not make any accusations of war crimes that would lead to Pres. Obama being impeached.

  We can argue whether we should be in this conflict or not. But my point here is the hypocrisy of the radicalized left.

  These groups, like Code Pink, are not anti-war so much as they are anti Republican and anti conservative. I won’t go so far as to say that they are anti-American, but they certainly seem to be anti traditional America.

  They will march on Washington to protest war of any kind, when the President is a Republican. Yet are notably silent when the President is a Democrat. Just as many of us in this country knew, Code Pink and other groups like them are nothing more than lap dogs for the DNC. They are the shock troops, the street thugs, using Brownshirt tactics.

  Pres. Bush was harshly condemned for not rushing out of a class room of children on 9/11 when he was told about the attacks. He was again castigated for not rushing back to D.C., into the middle of a war zone .

  Where is the condemnation of Pres. Obama, who announced a war with Libya while jetting around South America on the tax payers dime, on his latest continuous vacation? And he has yet to speak directly to the American people to explain our goals in Libya. What is his definition of success? What will be our exit strategy? How long will we be there? These are all things that Pres. Bush defined before we went into Iraq. 

  So where are the hypocrites on the left? The Code Pinks and the Obama loving leftist media? No where to be found at this time.

Why Can’t, The GOP Run On Social Issues?

March 20, 2011

  I know, I know , here he goes again. Right? I know that it seems as if all I write about anymore is the impact and effect that so-called  social issues are having on our society and the GOP.

  It seems that every time I bring up the topic of social issues, there are of course the usual suspects, from the GOP, that will scream that the GOP cannot run on the social issues. Really? Why not?

  Let’s look at my home state of Delaware. There is a certain segment within the Delaware GOP that will tell you that in Delaware, social issues are taboo. That to even speak of them, is the death of any candidate. That the people of Delaware don’t care about abortion, and homosexual legislation, and any number of other societal issues.

  My argument to these members of the GOP would be, then how come the Democrats can run on and legislate on social issues?

   We currently have here in Delaware, bills that are either in effect, working their way through the legislative process, or being proposed. That have instated a needle exchanged program. That would expand gambling. That would legalize medical marijuana. We have seen a bill passed to protect homosexuals against discrimination. We are seeing a move to repeal the defence of marriage act by our new U.S. Senator. All of this  has been championed by the Democrats.

  So it would seem that the Democrats have no problem running on and then delivering on campaign promises about social issues.

  So why is it that the GOP fails to see the importance of facing these issues? Is it that they feel that the Democrats are right on these issues? Or is it that they are frightened to stand up for what the know is right? Is it merely political calculations?

  What we need in the GOP is the courage to stand against the liberal media that distorts the facts, when it comes to where the majority of  people stand on these issues. We need candidates that will argue in favor of what is right, instead of trying to appease the liberals in hope of currying favor with the radicalized left. Never going to happen.

  If we look at the needle exchange program in Wilmington, what are we seeing? We are seeing the state using tax dollars to give needles to junkies.

  On the issue of medical marijuana. We need only look to California to see where that will lead. It is merely a cover to pass legislation to legalize marijuana. It is the government looking to increase revenue, by taxing a substance that is currently illegal. This would only lead to more people using drugs. It has the potential to lead to people using harder drugs.

  When we talk about the expansion of gambling here in Delaware, the Democrats will tell you that it is to increase revenue. They will tell you that the expansion will have no negative effects on society as a whole. Some will even point to New Jersey and a report that gambling revenue is up in that state. But this ignores the fact, that though revenue may be up, so is the crime rates in Atlantic City. Both property crime and violent crime rates in Atlantic City are above the state average.   http://www.idcide.com/citydata/nj/atlantic-city.htm

  Now let us look at the homosexual anti discrimination bill that Delaware passed. Some like myself feel that this was just a step towards passing a homosexual marriage bill. It also has the potential to be used against churches that refuse to marry homosexuals. Even though the current legislation protects churches, it could be one court challenge, in front of a liberal judge, away from being changed. The argument that the legislation was intended to protect homosexuals in the work place is false. We already have the fourteenth amendment.

  So it would seem that the Democrats here in Delaware have no problem talking about, running on, or actually legislating  on social issues. They openly support abortion. They pander to illegal immigrants and encourage drug use.

   I am calling on the Delaware GOP to either step up to the plate on social issues, or risk becoming completely irrelevant. We as members of the GOP must ask ourselves, do we believe that the Democrats are correct on these issues? Or are we willing to just stand by while we allow the Democrats to do what we know is wrong?

  Do we believe that a needle exchange program is the best use of our tax dollars, while showing little if any benefit?

  Do we believe that increasing the number of people using marijuana, for the sake of tax revenue is the proper role of government?

  Do we believe that expanding gambling and all that goes with it, in the way of peripheral crimes, is actually a benefit to the greater society?

  Do we believe that passing legislation for no better reason then to pander to the homosexual community, even though the Constitution already provides the same protection, is the best use of our legislative time?

  Or has the Delaware GOP become nothing more than cowards and heeled dogs. Do we merely cower and accept what is left for us by the Democrats? Have we for so long played the game of trying to be democrat-lite, that we no longer know how to be Republicans? Are we willing to compromise our principles and values? Will we shy away from the fight because it seems too hard? Will we take only the short view on issues? Have we told our rank and file voters that we care only about the election in front of us right now? And that we care nothing about the future.

  The GOP cannot survive for long if this is the tact that its leadership is willing to take. If we refuse to stand up for that which we know to be right, then we will fail not only to win elections, but we will fail ourselves and our children’s future. For what will we leave for the children? We will leave a future where drug use has become rampant. A future where crime is acceptable as long as the government is receiving its share of the take. We will leave a future that sees the total erosion of all of our traditions. A future that holds little hope of individual success, and only enslavement to the government.

 There are no issues that are only fiscal issues, there are no issues that are only social issues. There are only issues that affect our lives and those of our children. The GOP must look inward and decide, will we work for the future, or become a thing of the past? If we wish to work for the future then we must be willing to speak out about that which is destructive to our society as a whole, be it higher taxes or abortion. If we are willing to become a thing of the past, we need only continue to shy away from the tough issues.

What Message Does This Send?

March 16, 2011

  The Delaware House of Representatives has just passed HB19. This is a bill sponsored by Rep. Melanie L. George (D) Dist. 5 Bear/Newark.

  The bill will amend Titles 10, 11, 16, and 21 of the Delaware Code relating to drug involved offenses.

   Basically what this bill does is, it removes the mandatory minimum sentences for drug offense. The bill’s sponsor maintains that this is intended to focus on the drug dealers, rather than the so-called casual users.

  HB19 was passed by a vote of 39 yes to 1 no vote. The lone no vote was Rep. John Atkins (D) of the 41st Dist. Mr. Atkins says and I agree, that this would send the wrong message to drug users. And due to the fact that it changes the amount of drugs, that would be considered dealing, it allows dealers to manipulate the system even more than they already do.

   I am sorely disappointed in my own Rep. Dave Wilson on this vote. I am concerned that such a large majority of our state’s Representatives would vote in favor of this.

  While it may be said that this will lower the number of people going to jail for drug possession, what does it say about our attitude about drug use?

  Here is a link to the bill.

  http://legis.delaware.gov/LIS/LIS146.NSF/93487d394bc01014882569a4007a4cb7/ad7502faa748d7598525781e005fbfda?OpenDocument

Sussex GOP Committee Meeting

March 15, 2011

    Like many others in Sussex and around the state, I went to the Sussex county GOP monthly meeting last night, not knowing what to expect. Since the past several meetings have been filled with political fireworks surrounding the call for chairman Ron Sams to resign, last nights meeting ended with little more than a firecracker. But more on that in a minute.

   I arrived at around 6:30 pm for a meeting that was scheduled to begin at 7:30pm, thinking I would be early. There was already a fair-sized crowd waiting outside the locked door of the Millsboro Civic Center. With a steady flow of incoming cars. I was told that the official capacity of the room was two hundred and fifty. I would put the final number with standing attendees, at around three hundred.

   The chairman gaveled the meeting to order at around 7:35. Mr. Sams then went through the ordinary agenda items or treasurer’s report, minutes of the last meeting, old business, confirmations and nominations. The the guest speaker for the evening then spoke. This month it was Mike Protack, who has thrown his hat into the ring for state party chairman. I thought that Mr. Protack made a good case for himself.

  This was followed by a questions and answers segment. The entire meeting went off without any of the previous outburst. Well almost. One member of the audience took the opportunity during the Q&A to make the statement that she has been discriminated against in seeking to become a committee member because she chose to support the wrong candidate in the last election.

  After Mr. Protack was finished, chairman Ron Sams then addressed all of the controversy surrounding the call for him to resign. He stated that things had been said  by people he considered his friends that he felt were unfair. But that those people remained his friends and that he had no hatred in his heart. He then stated that he would step down as county party chairman in May, following the convention.

  I have to say that I agree with Mr. Sams’ reasoning for waiting until after the convention. He stated that he wanted to make sure that our Sussex County delegates were seated and were able to cast their votes at convention. In other words he felt for continuity sake it was best for him to stay on through the convention and then resign. I fully agree and feel that this is a fair compromise with those who wish for him to step aside.

  I thought that Mr. Sams handled the whole thing with class and dignity.  I did see some people who reacted to his announcement with what I would call childish behaviour, and I would say to them and everyone else who were calling for this resignation, including myself. We had all better be willing to step up.

  The only real “fireworks” were provided at the very end of the meeting by Mr. Bruce Fitzgerald. Mr. Fitzgerald you will remember was in the middle of this controversy when he was named as parliamentarian by Mr. Sams, and then resigned at the same meeting.

  It seems as if Mr. Fitzgerald had been offended by an e-mail. He attempted to read the e-mail into the record without being recognized by the chairman. He was quickly asked to leave by the sergeant of arms. He was clearly agitated and shouting. But because of the quick action of the sergeant of arms, we never did get to hear what had bothered him so about the e-mail or who had written the e-mail.

  We can only hope that moving forward from this point on, that the GOP here in Sussex County and within the state of Delaware can come together to defeat our real opponents, the liberals and the Democrats.

  I’ll close with something that may not be popular with some who were calling for Ron Sams to resign.

  Thank you Mr. Sams. For the time you gave of yourself.

Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf Says, “Let It Ride”

March 11, 2011

     Well if nothing else, it can be said of Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf, that he is persistent. Once again he has introduced legislation designed to increase the number of gambling venues in the state of Delaware . One in Sussex County and another in New Castle County.

    HB 40 is yet another attempt to increase the number of venues for gambling. Again we are told that we must do this to protect the revenue the state receives from gambling.  Rep. Schwartzkopf tells us that because surrounding states are opening gambling venues, we will lose revenue.

   When it come to the issue of whether or not to expand gambling in Delaware, you are likely to get two very different reasons why it is a good idea to expand. Even though the two arguments are counter intuitive.

  On one hand, the supporters of expansion will tell you that we must expand to draw more people from other states to Delaware casinos. This would seem to say that you can create new gamblers by creating new gambling venues.

  Now on the other hand the same supporters will tell you that we must expand to keep from loosing Delaware gamblers to other states. This would suggest that there are only just so many people willing to gamble and we can’t afford to lose a single one.

  To be honest I am of a mind that there are just so many people who are willing to piss their money away. If this is true, it makes little difference how many new venues we build. There will only be just so many people who will gamble. Delaware is never going to be a destination spot for gambling. People will not travel across the country to gamble here.

  The best we could ever hope for, is to be a regional spot. But that boat has also sailed, since surrounding states now have gambling. The idea that we can siphon off any real numbers from these states is tilting at windmills.

  It makes no sense to increase the number of venues. To do this we will need to hire more people to staff the venues and more people to oversee the operations. This means that there will be more overhead and very little increase in revenue if any.

  It would seem as if Rep. Schwartzkopf believes that more venues will equate to more revenue. First off, I don’t know of anytime, that the current venues are turning people away from the doors because they are full to capacity.

  So let us take Rep. Schwartzkopf’s logic and apply it to any other business. Let’s say I run an ice cream chain in a small town of say about one thousand people. Consider that I have an ice cream parlor on both ends of town. Would I actually be able to increase my revenue by opening another two parlors in the same little town? Or would I only be increasing my overhead?

  The argument will of course be made that this will create jobs. And it will for the short-term. During construction. Afterwards the number of new jobs will fall. And when it is realized that the new venues can’t be sustained, those jobs will be lost.

  Now on the backside of this argument we must ask ourselves. Do we want our state to be any further involved in gambling? When it has the real potential to ruin families and lives? We can do better than this. We can create jobs and grow the economy without this state-run tax trap.

Let The Games Begin

March 11, 2011

     It has been posted on the official site of the Sussex County GOP that a location has been decided upon for this months meeting.

   The meeting will be held on Monday 14, 2011 at 7:30pm until 9:00 pm. The location is in the Millsboro Civic Center. The address is 322 Wilson Hwy. I have tried to find the capacity for the civic center but have been unable so far.

  I do know that another site was suggested to Mr. Sams, that would have been larger and I believe also cheaper and more centrally located. There was also an offer from a private citizen to pay for this other site, but was turned down by Mr. Sams.

  Please stay tuned for updates. If this is anything like last month, there may be several changes. I will try to keep you up to date as I am made aware of any changes.

  Please, I encourage all registered Sussex County members of the GOP to come to this meeting and bring a friend or two. It is important, that even if the rank and file may not be given a chance to speak at these meetings, that they show up and keep the white-hot light of openness on the workings of the committee.