Keane observations about life, politics and sports.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Enjoy Memorial Day

On Facebook, Twitter and other mediums there are many posts along the lines of "Memorial Day isn't National Grilling Day. Today we remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice." or "I know mediocre department store sales are great but they didn't sacrifice everything so you could buy mediocre stuff at a mediocre store.". Lighten up folks. I guarantee you the vast majority of those who we mourn today would enjoy a barbeque or a ball game if they had made it home. They did not serve and fight in anticipation of people being miserable. No, they fought for many reasons but primarily to protect the American way of life. So, celebrate their service and sacrifice today. March in or watch a parade, if you want. Say a prayer for the fallen, if you want. Bottom line is do what you want and remember those who sacrificed so you have that right. Lastly, let me end with a quote that comes close summing up my feelings on this issue.

"It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived." Gen George S. Patton, Jr.

Friday, May 17, 2013

The Power to Tax is the Power to Destroy

The quote used as the title of this post has gotten a lot of play lately with the issue of the Internal Revenue Service targeting non-profit groups with conservative sounding names for extra scrutiny. It originally was said by Daniel Webster in arguing McCullough v. Maryland before the Supreme Court and paraphrased by Chief Justice Marshall in explaining the ruling on that case. That saying was true then and is just as true today. Abuses by the IRS are serious and must be investigated diligently. However, as conservatives we must be careful not to allow liberals to turn this issue around and label us anti-tax extremists. Since the beginning of the Tea Party movement liberals and their allies in the media have tried to marginalize the movement by taking their positions to extreme levels by portraying them as against ALL taxes and ALL government. Nothing could be further from the truth. We understand that there are necessary responsibilities of government and some form of taxation is necessary to fund those responsibilities. The choice is not between an unlimited constantly growing government and no government. Likewise when discussing the title quote the choice is not between the current tax system and no taxes. Once we get past the extremes of all or none we should be able to actually discuss the issue. This concern should be universal. Whether one falls on the right or left of the political spectrum, we should be able to agree there are problems with the current taxation system and it is ripe for abuse. The income tax system is nearly a century old and every session of congress has added rules, regulations and complexity to the system. We now have a system that is very personally invasive and strikes fear in tax payers. While this IRS misbehavior doesn't revolve around individual tax returns or the tax code, this is an issue that resonates with people who may not normally be politically active. Republicans need to take this cause on with more than just lip service. Don't make it only about the malfeasance of the Obama administration. Make abolishing the IRS and re-writing our tax code the primary product we are selling to voters. Every GOP candidate in 2014 should be running on government reform and tax simplification! Push legislation through the House of Representatives regardless of whether it has a chance in the Senate. Make Senate Democrats explain on the campaign trail why they blocked tax simplification! Hand in hand with selling rewriting the tax code must be a clear explanation of the danger we facing due to the burgeoning national debt. We are nearly 17 trillion dollars in debt. This is not something that is solved by taxing the rich more. The share of that debt is $188k per person and increasing every day. That isn't the share for every household. It is the share of the debt for each individual. A baby born yesterday is starting out close to 200 thousand dollars in debt borrowed on his or her behalf by politicians pretending to be generous. There are various online debt clocks. I like this one because it breaks it down several different ways. Prior to voting people should be shown the debt clock. UPDATE: For the Debt Clock click the link in last sentence. Clicking the picture just takes you to a blank copy.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Political Correctness More Important Than Accuracy?

From the Iowa Supreme Court we get this little bit of lunacy today:
Married same-sex couples have the same rights as married heterosexuals to have both parents listed on the birth certificates of their newborn children, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled this morning.
Not to belabor the obvious, but a Birth Certificate is a record of information regarding someone's birth. It should list various identifying information: where, when, doctor's name, baby's name, mother's name and father's name, etc. For the father's name you basically have two choices: if mom knows who the father is then list his name, if mom can't narrow the list down to one name you can list unknown. While a child can be taught to call two different people mommy, reality is the child has only one physiological mother which is who's name should be recorded on the birth certificate. As a separate note, between this nonsense and the hyphenated name silliness good luck trying to do up family trees in the future.


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