Thursday, July 21, 2005

July 9 and 10 Radio Shows

Once again, I guest-hosted The Harry Browne Show. Chris Rufer is an American success story. Starting with one-truck, he built the Morningstar Company which today harvests, processes, cans, and ships 2/3rds of California tomatoes.

What fascinated me was how Chris Rufer runs his company. He uses a unique from of management called, “Self-management.” I really wanted to know how you can have a company where… There are no human bosses and no individual, including the owner, has the right to fire anyone else, and amazingly, no one has a title – but everyone is responsible. In fact, this work force is so effective that in 12 years time the Morningstar Company has become dominant in its industry.

But what prompted the most calls was my discussion of Qui Bono. What’s wrong with me? Why don’t I see the conspiracy? Am I blind? …or part of it? One caller was particularly amusing, who decided that my guest was part of the conspiracy because his company’s name was a secret code!

You can hear hour one here and hour two here.

Then, the next day on my show, I continued my Constitutional survey – specifically that the Constitution isn’t very effective at making the government smaller. Reviewed the six hallmarks of Chris Rufer’s successful concept of “self-management.” And my unique take on the London terror attacks. Amazingly, no one sent a lynching committee.

I made my big prediction that the Bush Administration will, by the Fall of 2006, will have an Iraqi withdrawal plan IMPLEMENTED – and possibly sooner. Why? The GOP Congress will demand it. I also blew the lid off the hoax that Bush is trying to export liberty and democracy.

I had three callers. GOA Update: How a new mandatory minimum sentencing bill can turn you and your family into a criminal gang. Gave several ACTION ITEMS: Patriot Act (the London terrorist attack will be used to help move this bill), and announced the launch of the anti-CAFTA campaign (unconstitutional and more government, not free trade).

You can listen here.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

The Magic Wand of Legislation

DC Downsizer Marv G. writes,
"My wifeand I have just sent this FAX to several members of Congress; you may wish to send a similar one:
We propose a sure-fire bill to control global warning: make volcanic eruptions and the emergence of ocean floor methane bubbles illegal. It may prove difficult to enforce these laws, but we have other such laws that previous sessions of Congress have passed.

A prime example are the laws that prohibit illegal immigration. Though several are on the books, they appear to be just as incapable of enforcement as the proposed global warming bill.

We will wait with bated breath the passage of the former and the enforcement of the latter, and will wonder in the meantime whether either will ever occur."

That's funny! But let's go one step further. Laws to stop immigration won't work, any more than the fictional law to prevent volcanoes from erupting or the all-too-real laws to stop narcotic drug use.

The immigration issue is one of dozens of symbolic issues designed to rile folks up, the solution to which is more government power. Symbolic issues distract us from the most important thing we need to do -- Downsize DC (reducing the size, scope, and power of the federal government).

Downsizing DC in this instance would mean, ending the war on immigrants, or as Marv helps us see, ending the expensive pretense of such a war (expensive because, after all, border patrols cost money and national I.D. cards will be used to steal our civil liberties).

Monday, July 18, 2005

Is the Conspiracy Real? Part III

As I indicated in Part I, I’ve gotten several messages asking me to open my eyes, and suggesting that our government was somehow or other complicit in the events of Sept. 11, 2001. Here’s one example:

Did it ever occur to you, that the government was behind that attack, just as many of us Americans believe that the U.S. government was complicit in the 9/11 attack!

As of right now, this is my response...

Numerous people have contacted me with various theories about that day. I have questions myself.

And that’s why, last Friday, I watched most of my second full length Alex Jones documentary. I found the information interesting, and if true, very, very disturbing (I hope to get back to elaborate more about this in a future blog; perhaps I’ll cleverly title it, Part IV).

And further, I wonder about…

* I wonder why World Trade Tower 7, right next door, was “pulled” or demo'd later that day.
* Whether the plane that flew into the Pentagon probably wasn't the jet we were told it was.

On top of that, I think our government shot down the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania that day. And I find it curious that we haven't caught Osama Bin Laden yet.

However, the evidence, such that it is, has nearly all been speculative up to this point. And the various theories out there are often contradictory.

But it comes down to this.

It is more plausible, to me, that our Big Government just worked as incompetently as one could generally expect. And Osama Bin Laden issued a fatwa years ago, attacked one of our ships and two of our embassies, and he made clear why his followers attacked us.

You can't go around upsetting other folks applecarts, nor can you prop up dictators that they hate, without ending up angering people. Right now, our government’s efforts in Iraq, witnessed on Al Jazeera (doubt I spelled that right) are like recruitment videos and investor presentations for more terrorist organization, armament, and activity.

It's kind of like Occam's Razor – the simplest, most direct answer is the most likely. And if we made government dramatically smaller, which would include ending foreign interventionism and aid to dependent dictators, we'd be safer.

In fact, that’s the real criminal conspiracy: Our politicians, trying to run the world to their own liking, cause these backlashes.

Perhaps they mean to. But I think that's a very hard thing to _prove_ and big claims require big evidence.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Andrew Weil, M.D. shills for international safety regulation of your supplements

...because the gatekeepers in this case will be innocuous, even disinterested “international” agencies, composed of altruistic “scientists,” using “scientific” standards, and creating a voluntary “international” order of “safety.” Oh, and did I mention it’ll be done by “international” groups and that “scientists” will make the decisions? ...and that it’s for our “safety?”

Andrew Weil, the bearded health guru seen on public television has joined the disinformation campaign to support CODEX. Someone needed to counter this, and so I decided to provide this public service.

Below, AW stands for Andy Weil and JB stands for your excellent host who straightens him out.

AW: I've had a lot of questions about Codex, often based on alarmist and erroneous information being circulated on the Internet. I'm happy to set the record straight. Here's the story: in 1963 the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization created the Codex Alimentarius Commission to protect the health of consumers and to ensure fair practices in the international food trade through development of food standards, codes of practice, guidelines and other recommendations.

JB: OK, so note that Andrew Weil favors this. Notice the positive language about Codex, and the pejoratives about information critical of Coded being distributed on the Net.

AW: For the past decade, Codex has been developing guidelines for vitamins and mineral supplements focusing on establishing new potency levels.

JB: Just bookmark this in your mind. Later, Weil will deny this is what they’re doing.

AW: Codex completed its work in November 2004, and the guidelines were adopted at the Commission's July 5, 2005 meeting. This development has given rise to widespread misunderstanding. The thrust of the wrong-headed information being circulated on the Internet is that the Codex guidelines will restrict the availability of vitamins and minerals in the United States. Even more fanciful is the claim that once the Codex guidelines on vitamins and minerals are adopted, supplements that exceed the RDA will be available in the U.S. only by prescription and that this "stealthy" takeover of the supplement industry has been plotted in secret by the pharmaceutical industry working underneath the radar in Europe. None of this is true.

JB: OK, so that’s his charge. How does he back it up? (NOTE: As you read Weil, notice the “slight of mouth” [SOM].)

AW: First of all, the Codex guidelines are non-binding on the United States (or any other country) and do not override U.S. law as many people claim (only Congress can change U.S. law regarding supplements).

JB: SOM #1 Codex guidelines are not, technically speaking, binding on our country and they do not, again technically speaking, override U.S. law. Yes, only Congress can change U.S. law regarding supplements.

But, what he doesn’t tell you is that the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the Codex Aliminetarius Commission (or, food standards board) is part of the WTO. I’ll explain how in moment. But let’s back to Dr. Andy...

AW: This country's participation in Codex is strictly voluntary. The guidelines will not in any way affect the availability of supplements to consumers in the United States.

JB: (Don’t forget our “mental bookmark”). Our government is a member of the WTO, and a signatory to CODEX. WTO is as binding as a treaty. At some point some foreign nation, another member of the WTO, will likely file complaint citing unfair or illegal trade practices because American businesses are still selling a particular supplement that doesn’t meet the new “fair” regulations.

The WTO has the power to respond to such a complaint with sanctions. This will put a crimp in domestic companies' ability to trade overseas.

And _Congress_ will respond to this situation by folding like a cheap suit. Congress always withers in the face of WTO because the Chamber of Commerce and Fortune 500 companies won’t tolerate having their businesses damaged because of one or two supplement manufacturers.

AW: Here's what you should know about the Codex guidelines: They're limited to vitamins and minerals only, and do not extend to herbs and other dietary supplements.

JB: Yes, because God hold the patents on herbs.

AW: Contrary to the circulating scare stories, the guidelines do not set upper limits for vitamins and minerals in supplements. Instead, they specify that maximum amounts should be established by scientific risk assessment, a process that will now be undertaken by a panel of scientific experts. There is nothing in the guidelines requiring that supplements be sold as prescription drugs in the United States or elsewhere.

JB: MENTAL BOOKMARK TIME. First, the guidelines were “for vitamins and mineral supplements focusing on establishing new potency levels,” and the “guidelines will not in any way affect the availability of supplements to consumers,” but now, “the guidelines do not set upper limits for vitamins and minerals in supplements.” Which is it Andy?

Actually, it’s SOM #2, and my personal favorite of this disinformation piece. It’s easier to disguise misleading information if you’re a bit verbose. He’s right, again technically, that the “guidelines” do not set upper limits. But the scientific panels of experts that Codex creates will. Or do you assume that these scientists, tasked with setting upper limits, will decide that there should be no such limits?

But Andy also thinks we’ll be better off as a result of these limits (which he just tried to tell you don’t exist), because scientists on a “committee” will provide for our safety. It won’t be you. It won’t be the people selling. There’s no room for the market in this process – science has the answers.

AW: As for the notion that the drug industry has engineered the Codex guidelines in an effort to take over the supplement market, the truth is that some of the largest supplement manufacturers in the U.S. already are owned by big pharmaceutical firms or their parent companies.
{signed} Andrew Weil, M.D.

JB: SOM #3 – this is what specialists in rhetoric call a non-sequiter. For those of you in Waukesha County, Wisconsin (home of Congressman James Senselessbrenner), that means one thing has nothing to do with the other.

Actually, the big pharmaceutical firms only control “some” of the supplement market (by Dr. Andy’s own admission), and it would be good news to them to see their competition shut down. Further, supplements are used by people to help keep their bodies healthy. Without them, these folks will have to turn or return to prescription drugs, meaning more customers for those friendly big pharmaceutical firms who may well have paid Andy to sell his credibility.
{signed} Jim Babka, No B.S.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

The Gospel's centrality

The gospel is not just the A-B-C's, but the A to Z of Christianity. The gospel is not just the minimum required doctrine necessary to enter the kingdom, but the way we make all progress in the kingdom. We are not just saved by the gospel and then changed by obedience, but the gospel is the way we grow (Gal. 3:1-3) and are renewed (Col. 1:6). It is the solution to each problem, the key to each closed door, the power through every barrier (Rom. 1:16-17).

This version of this quote found at: Kaleo Church - San Diego, CA

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Is news about CAFTA and supplement regulation a hoax?

Al B. writes... I am writing in response to the [Downsizer-Dispatch] message sent on July 11 regarding an impending CAFTA vote and its effects on the price and availability of food supplements. I found the following rebuttal [at]
I am wondering... if you care to take issue with the allegation that these concerns amount nothing more than chain-mail propagated urban legend.

I replied and said… Snopes is wrong, though why requires substantial explanation. Illustrating “how” exposes an insidious complexity designed to undermine regulatory efforts until we're far too late in the process. More on that in a minute.

Now, it turns out there WAS an error in yesterday's message. But the Snopes piece does not address that. The error? The CAFTA bill does not have a specific provision on supplements.

There is NOTHING directly in the language of either the House or Senate
bills pertaining to CAFTA that threatens dietary supplement consumers. What DOES threaten us is the language of the CAFTA Treaty itself.

In the interests of accuracy, this is an important distinction to make. Mea culpa. To be honest, despite numerous consultations with others, I didn't grasp that fact until AFTER someone pointed it out to me.

But it's still important to realize these bills contain implementing language that would give CAFTA the force of law inside the USA, but the bills don't contain the text of the Treaty itself and THAT is where the threat DOES lie. See Section 6, the SPS Section.

This section of the CAFTA Treaty would require the USA to form a Sanitary Phytosanitary (SPS) Measures Committee for the purpose of insuring that we entered into a constant process of harmonizing our laws under the terms of the SPS Agreement in the WTO.

Further, Article 3 of the WTO's SPS Agreement requires our country to harmonize our food safety laws (read DSHEA) to Codex standards. It states "To harmonize sanitary and phytosanitary measures on as wide a basis as possible, Members SHALL base their food safety measures on international standards, guidelines or recommendations." (Codex guidelines set the standards for food safety, including vitamins and minerals.)

The likely effects of CODEX are well-documented by the ever-rigorous Life Extension Foundation.

There is a disinformation campaign underway and the complexity of the CAFTA and Codex processes are the key to the success of this disinformation campaign. The Snopes piece inadvertently lends some of the evidence.

The bills Snopes cites that didn't come up to vote (in 2003) demonstrate that the FDA and the Major Pharma companies that control it, don't have the power to take our rights through domestic political means. They have motive, but insufficient means.

Thus, there are only three ways they can go:

1) To the Courts. This strategy has already failed them to a sufficient degree so that they are hardly pursuing it.
2) By scaring Americans. This one hasn't worked because too many people are now using supplements and swear by them.
3) Go to an International Body like the WTO. And I explained in yesterday's message (see July 11 entry on this blog, “How they’ll take our supplements”) how this process will work to take our supplements.

One final thing. It's hard to sufficiently alert someone about something when it's so darn complicated and the effects are so far off. I've come to learn several things about Big Government power and the political process over the years -- rules of thumb that consistently work (I wish I had an investment scheme that was so reliable).

One thing that is true is that big government fully exploits the powers it's given. Give them an inch, they take ten miles. They do things "no one" foresaw. I explained the most likely, but not the only, scenario by which CODEX would result in the loss of access to supplements. And by loss of access I mean not only outright loss, but also increased cost, lower potency, and greater regulation, such as a requirement for prescription-only access.

Snopes counters that you won't lose access to supplements in July 2005. They are right. But what they overlook is that this will happen very, very gradually and it won't be CONGRESS that does it. And we'll be reduced to putting out brush fire after brush fire, and lose battles along the way. The losses will mount and become bad precedents. And new a generation of public school children will be taught how the WTO protected us from "snake oil salesmen."

The time to act now. We need to throw the Codex and Cafta babies out with the bathwater because their Rosemary's Babies.

Therefore, those who've overstated the case are guilty of just one thing -- lacking the marketing and political experience necessary to accurately articulate in a way that motivates action what they know in their hearts to be true. This is indeed a flaw, but to my mind, a forgivable one.

To my knowledge, everything (aside from the ONE aforementioned misstatement I've made regarding supplement language in the authorizing bills), both at our website and on our email newsletter, is true, and if anything, understated.

P.S. I couldn't figure out where to include this comment, so I've made it a "P.S." The bias of the Snopes writer is obvious. Ms. "vitaminized" (as she signs the piece) decries the fact that these supplements are unregulated. She _wants_ a big government program and gives several (some panic-stricken, there's that attempt at fear again) reasons why such government "oversight" is necessary. Oh, where would we be if bureaucrats didn't protect us from ourselves?

Monday, July 11, 2005

How they’ll take our supplements

Regarding CODEX and Codex-enabling CAFTA... You won’t lose your supplements tomorrow. It could take years. But here’s how it will likely work:

Our government is a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), and a signatory to CODEX. WTO is as binding as a treaty.

At some point some foreign nation, another member of the WTO, will likely file complaint citing unfair or illegal trade practices because American businesses are still selling a particular supplement that doesn’t meet the new “fair” regulations.

The WTO has the power to respond to such a complaint with sanctions. This will put a crimp in domestic companies' ability to trade overseas.

And Congress will respond to this situation by folding like a cheap suit. Congress always withers in the face of WTO because the Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers, or the Fortune 500 companies won’t tolerate having their businesses damaged because of one or two supplements (greater good, and all that).

So the process will start with one or two supplements disappearing, to be replaced by alternatives that have lower potency and higher cost. These supplements may even become prescribed drugs. This process will begin with just a few supplements at first, but more will follow, and each time it happens it will become easier and easier.

You can join the fight to stop passage of CAFTA right now by visiting and sending a message to your Representative

Saturday, July 09, 2005

If we work to elect candidates that support the Constitution we'll change things -- NO WE WON'T

Dan M. writes and offers a common solution to the problems with our government...

In your latest mailing [Downsizer-Dispatch] you included the following idea for stopping land seizure:

"We would like to lobby for an amendment to these
bills. Our amendment would add an enforcement clause
that would cut off federal funding to all states and
localities that seize property under Kelo."

First of all I think the idea of federal black mail to be as flawed as the current state of leviathan in Washington. It already blackmails states over things like road funding, education, etc. This is nothing more than a continuation of the same tactics. Why not just stop funding all unconstitutional spending? Don't try and replace one bad idea with another. The Feds should not be blackmailing the states period.

Your assumption that congress has the sense to recognize bad state behavior in property seizure and yet will not reign in the rogue Supreme Court that condones property seizure seems naive.

Why not just vote for good congressmen? Let’s replace them all with ones that will follow the constitution and God. Let’s vote for a good President like Michael Peroutka of the Constitution Party?

I responded...

Michael Peroutka seemed like a good guy. I would’ve been pleased to see him or the Libertarian candidate elected because both of them would’ve truly been committed to Downsizing DC.

Of course, that wasn’t practical. The game is rigged – ballot access laws, campaign finance laws, and major media coverage that looks more like ESPN than a serious discussion of the issues (no good examples come to mind to contrast with ESPN).

And Downsize DC has made a commitment to avoid rigged games. We’re starting a new game where the rules are fairer.

We're steadfastly avoiding partisanship and personalities, and sticking with principles. Once you get committed to a party or a person, you lose potential supporters who don't support that person. Eventually you become beholden to that person or their party because all of your supporters support them. Before long, you lose your objectivity -- even your principles. Then one day, you find yourself on Hardball shilling for something you oppose in your heart and would be railing against if the other team was doing it. You've become the big man in town, but you've lost your soul. I don't want to sell's soul.

As for the Leviathan, obviously, we oppose it as well. The attorney's we've contracted to work on this matter both happen to be a little involved with the Constitution Party. In fact, one was the 1996 VP nominee for that party.

What our proposal would do is A) Strengthen the findings of fact in a current piece of legislation that would prohibit the federal government from acting on the power the Supreme Court has now (illegally) granted them, and B) Take ALL, that's ALL federal funding -- every department, agency, and pork-barrel project -- away from states that take advantage of the Kelo case ruling. That money shouldn't be going to the states.

There are only 20 things the Congress is permitted to do under the Constitution. Here's the list. [Oops, forgot to give credit where credit's due: This list is courtesy of Michael Mitchell of Alaska]

1) Borrow money.
2) Regulate commerce among states.
3) Regulate naturalization.
4) Regulate bankruptcies.
5) Coin money.
6) Fix weights and measures.
7) Punish counterfeiters.
8) Establish post offices.
9) Establish post roads.
10) Record patents.
11) Protect copyrights.
12) Create federal courts.
13) Punish pirates.
14) Declare war.
15) Raise an army.
16) Provide a navy.
17) Call up the militia.
18) Organize the militia.
19) Make laws for Washington, DC.
20) Make rules for the Army and Navy.

Sending money back to the states for any other purpose is unconstitutional. Unfortunately, the lawless band only recognizes their own rules (I like this use of a reflexsive pronoun). The Constitution isn't compelling to them. Would I prefer they abide by it? Yes. But they won't.

The real danger now is that the Congress will get into the game of "urban renewal," and that those state judges who stand firm and say, "Big Company X, you can't have that land through an eminent domain procedure," will simply go to Congress and "make a federal case out of it." And in order to stop such a thing from happening, you need a bill with teeth -- something that has a penalty for violating it.

Withdrawing a state's federal funding would serve to a) stop the unconstitutional flow of funds, and b) actually restrain what Congress is likely to perceive as a new federal power.

We know more than our Pastors – Tim Bednar

A blog I read regularly, Jollyblogger, posted a link to a report by Tim Bednar called, “We know more than our Pastors.” I haven’t yet had time to read the entire article, but you can here, if you have Adobe Acrobat.

But the list provided by Jollyblogger really touched me and set me to thinking. I want to quote Jollyblogger directly, which is what I’ll do for the rest of this entry:

When he says that "We Know More than Our Pastors," he doesn't mean that any single blogger knows more than any particular pastor. He means that bloggers networks extend beyond the reach of a single pastor. On page 39 he says:
In the process of blogging, we have discovered that our emerging network is smarter, more responsive and more creative that our churches, pastors and denominations. Michael Boyink interprets it this way rephrasing a point from Cluetrain Manifesto, “People in networked congregations have figured out that they get far better information and support from one another that from [their churches].”
Tim contends that bloggers have access to more information of all types than their pastors realize and that they are far more sophisticated than their pastors give them credit for. This knowledge goes beyond biblical and theological knowledge, although I think this would be included in the sense that bloggers can find out things they need to know online. On page 30 Tim mentions a lady who was able to bust her pastor for plagierism through the internet as an example of the expansive knowledge that bloggers have.

Bloggers are creating their own community and this means that they expect to participate in the creation of community in the church. Bloggers aren't looking to follow the pastor's vision, but are looking for the pastor to be a co-creator with them of life in the church.

Tim summarizes the partcipatory church in this way:
• The traditional church conceives of itself as an exclusive community and determines who is a “member” and who is not. It believes that it owns these definitions. This is no longer true. Christianity is an open conversation by those following Christ. Those involved in the conversation define the terms, not the church.

• Conversations are all around us. Christianity is one of many.

• Christians get information for their conversation from multiple sources that include, but are not limited to Christianity. We no longer pursue spiritual formation within the bounds of a single tradition, church, pastor or denomination. We are having hyperlinked conversations that subvert traditional hierarchies.

• Every Christian is a creator. We no longer have to wait for church authorization to think or act or speak in the name of Christ.

• Christians belong to multiple congregations.

• Participation in the conversation is spiritual formation.

• Congregations are conversations. They have a human voice. Congregations are getting smarter and more informed as they talk to each other. Participation in this new kind of networked congregation fundamentally changes people.

• Churches are not congregations. They do not participate in the conversation of their congregation. In fact, churches spent most of their time, energy and money creating parallel conversations and get frustrated when no one participates in them. In this new reality, churches sound hollow, flat and literally inhuman to their congregations. They do not speak the same language because they do not have a human voice.

• Churches that think they do are kidding themselves and missing an opportunity.

• Congregations are more important than churches.

• Most churches and pastors assume they build congregations. This is not true. Rather they belong to congregations. In this new era, congregations (like conversations) are all around us—we are in search of churches (and pastors).

• Congregations credential pastors they trust and invite into their conversation. Pastors emerge by building a reputation from within the congregation based on consistency and transparency. Pastors add value to congregations as they add connectedness.

• Successful pastors and churches of the future will enter into co-creative covenants that help congregations deal with complexity. They see themselves as benevolent keepers of Christian tradition who enable Christians, embrace emergence and foster learning. They do not see themselves as gatekeepers or arbiters of membership in the church.

• Pastors are not primarily preachers. Sermons are no longer teachings, but learning experiences. Goal of preaching is to learn not teach.

• Congregations are looking for pastors who serve them and offer the Sacraments. We are not looking for a vision.

• Church planters are people who are called to find and eventually pastor emerging congregations.

• The participatory church intimately connects with the real storytellers of Christianity, namely the congregation. Pastors and churches no longer tell the gospel story. All truth statements are co-created by congregations through the process of emergent conversations.

• These new participatory churches work on a gift economy. This means that Kingdom work is the reward not financial remuneration or power.

• Relational authenticity and longevity--not attendance--equals success in the participatory church. A church’s primary value to the congregation lies in its ability to connect Christians in conversation, service and sacrament. Connectedness equals healthy spiritual formation.

• Participatory churches provide more meaningful and memorable experiences because they participate with congregations. Even if Christians do not contribute to the conversation, they still expect a better experience because of the participation others.

• The participatory church is diverse in viewpoints and traditions. The new ministry of the pastor is to co-create systems that help congregations manage complexity.

• The greatest skill a participatory pastor will possess is the ability to listen.

• Congregations are their own watchdogs because they are the real stakeholders. Churches and pastors no longer need to screen their congregations for orthodoxy, arbitrate membership or filter their conversation. Orthodoxy will emerge. Call it emergent orthodoxy.

• Orthodoxy is not determined by a single source, but is distributed throughout the congregation. Neil Cole, a leader in the organic church movement observes, “The best solution to heresy in the church is not to have better-trained leaders in ‘the pulpits’, but better-trained people in ‘the pews’.”

• What I am trying to describe is a new kind of church created by believers

Wow. Whether you agree with Tim Bednar or not, this really should set your mind to thinking. Is your church really engaging the culture? Does the administration of your church understand how to minister to its people and its community in this post-modern blogging, cell phone, PDA, and I-pod era? Or is it fast becoming irrelevant?

Friday, July 08, 2005

Is the Conspiracy Real? Part II

Was God trying to get my attention?

Today, I read an article called, “Cui Bono Revisited” by Butler Shaffer. Cui Bono basically means, “Who benefits?” And of course the question was, in a very non-conspiratorial fashion I might add, “Who benefits from acts of terrorism?”

That’s easy. The State does; war is the health of it. Politicians get to be their constituent’s savior. Bureaucrats get new opportunities, promotions, as well as bigger staffs and budgets.

Butler was noticing the same thing I was noticing. Big government benefits so much and responds so quickly and predictably to expand their power, one might be tempted – very tempted – to think they planned the bad things that happen.

And as if that was not enough, I then had lunch with a donor to Downsize DC. We met for two hours. And what did we spend 90% of the time talking about? How our government craved, if not planned, the events of 9-11. (I’ll share my thoughts on this in an upcoming message).

Here were the points my lunch partner made…

• First, 9-11 is one of string of “staged” events used to provoke Americans into a desire for revenge. The Maine got us into the Spanish-American War. The Lusitania was bait for the Germans, and once they sunk it, Woodrow Wilson, who promised he would keep us out of war, had the excuse he needed to get us into World War I. Historians now believe FDR knew that the Japanese were going to attack, and Pearl Harbor was the provocation necessary to awaken the sleeping U.S. giant. The Gulf of Tonkin was used to provoke a large-scale increase in involvement in Vietnam.

• Second, using staged events and demonizing an opponent was a very old tactic. Nero had accused the Christians of burning Rome (historians believe he actually did it). Hitler blamed the Communists for burning the Reichstag and used that event to begin his reign of terror.

• Third, if a man campaigns for office saying he’s opposed to pornography – that he’ll regulate it out of existence once elected – and then once elected, he begins installing several pornographers in his cabinet, you’d be on solid ground to doubt his sincerity. And that’s exactly what George Bush did. He said that his administration would pursue a humble foreign policy. He mocked Al Gore during the debates saying he wouldn’t have a “nation-building corp.” But he chose the very men who co-signed an open letter to then President Clinton calling for regime change and nation-building in Iraq.

• That letter was issued by The Project for a New American Century (PNAC). Their Statement of Principles is signed by Cheney, Wolfowitz and Rumsfeld, as well as by Eliot Abrams, Jeb Bush, Bush's special envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad, and many others. William Kristol, famed conservative writer for the Weekly Standard, is also a co-founder of the group. The Weekly Standard is owned by Ruppert Murdoch, who also owns international media giant Fox News. And just what did they say? In "Rebuilding America's Defenses," PNAC describes four "Core Missions" for the American military, one of which is for American forces to "fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous wars." And Iraq was their prime target. But they agreed that the American people would need some motivation in order to permit such an attack, and that might require a “New Pearl Harbor.” On 9-11, they got it.

• And for more information, he suggested I visit,

As I left, he gave me an Alex Jones DVD that elaborated on other points he made during our lunch. He bought lunch and made a donation. Obviously, I promised to watch. Stay tuned.

Is the Conspiracy Real? Part I

Yesterday, terrorists struck the London subway and a double-decker bus, killing more than 35 {update, 52 as of Wednesday, July 13} and injuring dozens of others. We (at had a Downsizer-Dispatch email message, dealing with our response to the Kelo/eminent domain decision by the Supreme Court, planned for Tuesday. But we put if off till Wednesday for internal reasons. But as we looked at it for Wednesday, we decided it needed significant work, and so we decided to edit it and release it Thursday.

And the news Thursday morning was dominated by the attack in London. We decided once more, that a hurried re-write of the message was necessary. We couldn’t pretend like nothing happened and we had no idea what to expect in terms of how the public was going to respond to this. For example, would Kelo even matter now that this happened? …would folks still be angry about the Supreme Court's decision?

So we sent a message titled, “Panic and Insanity and Focus.” Most of the message was about Kelo. But here is what I said about the attacks of that morning:
DC Downsizers have asked for action on the Kelo decision and we've been preparing to provide that. I was going to write you about it this morning. Then I turned on the news and learned about the London terror bombings.

It makes me angry. Angry at the terrorists. Angry at what I fear may follow.

The terrorists may win again, just like they did after 9/11. Wait a minute: Did I say the terrorists won after 9/11? Well, I believe they did, because they gave our government an excuse to do violence against the rights and prosperity of the American people.

Nearly everything our government did in response to 9/11 was harmful and ineffective. Airport security is still insecure (shoes screened but cargo not), but travel by air has become a nightmare for millions and airlines are in financial distress. Federal spending and deficits have soared. Vast new bureaucracies have been created. National ID cards and other intrusions have been created, one after another.

And we are no safer than before, neither will we be, because so-called government solutions for anything are nearly always incompetent and destructive, because terrorists, kind of like evil entrepreneurs, will always be quicker and smarter than big governments.

What should government do about terrorism? It should discard all of the un-Constitutional functions it has assumed to itself, and focus on defending us by catching terrorists. Not by curtailing the rights of Americans, but by developing human intelligence and disrupting and capturing terror cells. I think it really is that simple. If the federal government did not do so much, it might be able to do a better job at its core function of national defense.

Do I expect this to happen? Not anytime soon, but I fear such reform will be longer delayed by the response to the latest terror attack. I fear Americans will forget things like the Kelo decision, and once again rush to give more power and money to Washington to use poorly, even destructively.

And we still need to Downsize DC! We must remain focused on that.
From there, the message went on to elaborate about both our Kelo-specific plans and the need to develop a long-term plan for the U.S. Supreme Court.

But what was interesting was the feedback. There was a large amount of it. And one common theme came in again, and again, and again – the belief that elements of our government or a shadow government were responsible for 9-11 and/or the London attacks.

This was interesting to me. I was surprised that so many people believed our government wasn’t just incompetent, but outright complicit. In a future message, I’ll share with you my response to these folks.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Troubles in Church, Part I -- the Solemn Assembly

“A friend of mine” has been checking out other churches this summer. He and his wife both really love the people at their church, miss their Sunday School class, and the children’s ministries are awesome. But some things have happened, since last October, which have really shaken the husband in particular. And so, they’ve spent some time looking at other churches. They’ve spent four Sundays in other churches so far this Summer.

People have asked, “Why are you leaving?” They’ve been hesitant to reply. But I can’t help writing about it, because, well, I’m not revealing their identity and I have his permission. You see, he wishes he would’ve known what he knows now, and if he had a forum to share his opinions, he would. Well, I’ve got that forum, so here goes.

One of the things that concerns him – makes him shy away from coming back and keeps he and his wife looking – is that there’s a generational division in their church. And what are they fighting over? Primarily, the type of worship service we’ll have. How common is this?

Well, as he tells it, it’s not really much of a fight. As already indicated, the children’s ministries are awesome, so they have a decent-size contingent of families with primary age children. The dominant class in the church is 60+ years old. Young singles, as well as folks in their 40s to mid-50s, have much smaller representation than they should.

Because the older generation makes up the largest part of the tithing base of the church, they’re getting their way. The services are much more “traditional” (if you’re not an evangelical, none of this will make sense to you). And that helps explain why the two aforementioned demographic groups are under-represented. And, it helps explain why the church is on a membership and morale decline.

He sincerely fears that the church is dying; though given its size, it will be a long death.

But this isn’t about traditional vs. whatever. There shouldn’t be a generation gap!

My friend elaborates, “Since the Fall of 2004, this church has gone through significant changes. We’ve lost our senior pastor and other members of our staff. We’re rudderless. I’ve heard from more than one member that it was God’s will – that He has something big planned – and that’s why the last nearly ten months have been so difficult.”

Well, I don't necessarily agree with the concept that, "God made these changes to Our Church." While His Will is intact, I don't believe God tempts. And I’m not omniscient, so it's possible this was what God had in mind, but it's also possible He's chastening the church. And in the end, it may be for the best -- particularly if this particular community of believers really does love Him. But there’s a real likelihood, in my opinion, that they're not in His will at the moment.

Trying times call for discretion – for Wisdom. Wisdom is personified in Scripture. Sophia, as Wisdom is called in the Old Testament, is that Spirit we now call the Holy Spirit. Wisdom is necessary. So too, is discretion and vision. The Holy Spirit stands ready to give these gifts to us, if only...

In a trying situation, such as this community of believers is going through, only a great deal of time in prayer, that includes fasting and repentance, will bring the Spirit of Wisdom necessary to solve the problems.

The Pilgrims and Puritans recognized trying times as signals that they needed to get right with God. Perhaps there was another cause for their problems, but they ALWAYS started there. My friend tells me that the interim pastor indicated that financial concerns required a delay in locating a new Pastor. But a new Pastor is not necessarily the remedy, and getting the financial house in order isn’t the first step needed either. A Solemn Assembly is needed here.

The Spirit of God speaks in a still quiet voice, and believers everywhere must stop being so busy that they cannot hear it. We live in a microwave, me-first era. Problems are created and solved in 23 minutes, with laughs to spare, in our modern fables (sitcoms). Sermons that run much longer than that draw the ire of congregants.

But if ever a particular sermon was needed for this hour, it can be found at this link. If your church is going through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, like my friend’s church is, perhaps you’ll be electrified and edified by Spirit as you read this very important teaching.

And as for the generation gap? Well, this problem could be solved by that same Holy Spirit, convicting hearts. As Rick Warren says in the Purpose Driven Life, “It’s not about me.” The younger generation must respect their elders. The older generation should answer the question, “Do I want this church to die with me, or am I willing to forgo my preferences to see this body reach the community for Jesus?” If both sides repented, miraculous solutions wouldn’t be far away.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Campaign restrictions are the answer? No, not really.

In my capacity as President of, I get lots of letters about the need to “clean up the system.” I’m reminded of Michael Cloud’s aphorism, “The problem isn’t the abuse of power; it’s the power to abuse.”

Donald S. wrote me to say that he wondering if we can take the money out of political campaigns,

We really need to change the way our election system work. I think we need a system very similar to the British. The government funds the campaign so every one that runs has the same campaign funding. It should be illegal to except campaign contributions. They also limit the campaign time, which I don't think is quite as important as taking the money out of the picture. I feel this would be the biggest step ever in cleaning up the government. This would ultimately take the government out of the hands of big business and give it back to the people. I also believe this would help organizations like this get heard.

I responded,

We disagree. The rise of campaign finance restrictions has made it more difficult for challengers. When contributions are limited, the game becomes raising more of them. For incumbents, this is simple… Hold a cocktail party or dinner, the special interests line up, buy tables at a time, and the coffers are filled. But for challengers, it’s akin to filling a swimming pool with a teaspoon.

If a challenger can compel the incumbent to spend his coffers, he/she increases the odds of victory. The more the incumbent spends in a House race, the more likely he is to lose. Most challengers just don’t get the incumbent to spend enough money.

Essentially, what I’m saying is that the current system benefits corporate American, at the expense of other interests. They employ multiple thousands of people and can gather funds very quickly and efficiently for those already in power. There’s no comparable base for challengers to tap.

However, the lack of large funding block has also put an end to the real division and debate between the parties. Republicans and Democrats largely agree. Why? Because there’s no threat from ideological/principled candidates. Again, principled candidates just can’t attract sufficient funds to obtain the necessary media coverage and publicity. Without that, they lose.

Now, just imagine, what if a very rich or a couple of wealthy guys were to back a particular candidate? Could things could be different? We don’t have to imagine – it’s happened before. My example: Eugene McCarthy. He had a big backer who helped him in the New Hampshire primary. His stunning success caused a sitting president to cancel his re-election campaign.

For more information about where we stand and why we’ve chosen to stand there, please check out

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Steve Willis, blog freak

I’ve turned my friend Steve Willis on to blogging. Steve works with me at Downsize DC and has ever since I became CEO of our team in 2001. At one point, Steve was the only other full-time employee with me. He and his wife Jennifer have been building an art business. I explained to him how he could use blogging to promote his business.

Well, he’s really gotten into this blog thing. He writes, “I am now a blog freak because of you and soon to have a fifth campaign trail blog showing all the good campaign [as in, Harry Browne campaign] pics.”

Steve does art for a chiropractor on her waiting-room bulletin board. It’s funny.

The glass art sites that started his craze (please buy Steve and Jen’s art, they do commission work).

Steve was a Gulf War veteran. Pics are eerie and interesting.

Steve and Jen had a bunch of rats and decided to memorialize them. See, he is a freak – a blog freak.

And since he wrote to me about how I’ve turned him into a freak, the Harry Browne campaign photos blog he promised is up as well. At this link you can see a picture of me, at my desk, back when I was fat.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Three Hours Worth of Radio Last Weekend

First, The Harry Browne Show…

I found out later in the week that on July 2nd, I would guest-host The Harry Browne Show on Saturday night, once again. I didn’t have a lot of time to prepare, so I started with the Durbin “Hitler-stupidity,” and took a second run at Paul Harvey (like I did on June 26 on the Culture Repair Show). Then, I had Herb Titus and Ed Brayton on to discuss the Kelo (eminent domain) decision by the Supreme Court.

The interesting thing about these guys, one a conservative-Constitutionalist (Titus) and the other a libertarian (Brayton) is that they disagree about the proper application of the incorporation clause of the 14th Amendment. Titus, an advocate of federalism, didn’t see a federal role in this eminent domain case, but thought the Court decision was dangerous for other reasons. Brayton felt that the Court had a duty to protect private property.

I also asked them to tell me who their dream candidates were to replace Sandra Day O’Conner – a topic I elaborated on after they left the air.

On top of that, I discussed how Downsize DC would celebrate July 4th with the new and the progress we’ve made on the Read the Bills Act.

Imitating Paul Harvey’s cadence was real good training for me. I’m even more conscious as a still new radio host of how to get and retain people’s attention. Harvey’s cadence is very exaggerated, but if you listen closely to most “successful” radio personalities, they have a cadence that wouldn’t work in normal conversation.

I had 2 callers and 1 email on the show. The time slot, Saturday, 10 till midnight Eastern, is brutal for me. I get a real adrenaline rush and it takes time to unwind after I get off air. The next day, I get up for church and I’m dragging – need a nap. But I am flattered that Harry & Pamela think so highly of me that they’ve asked me to fill in.

You can listen here to hour one and here to hour two.

Second, The Culture Repair Show

GOA Update was about a new, tough-on-crime, mandatory minimums bill that could turn a gun-owner using a weapon to defend his family could become a criminal gang. BTW, it was the ever-present James Senslessbrenner doing his thing again.

I elaborated about what how the Downsize DC Foundation, with its new website, is going to celebrate July 4. (See the previous entry on my blog)

You can listen to the July 3 episode The Culture Repair Show here.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

How Downsize DC will celebrate July 4

This was today’s Downsizer-Dispatch:

We have big news; a new tool for you. This is how Downsize DC will honor our nation's birthday...

Every July 4th Americans celebrate their independence. They hold parades, politicians march with veterans, and spectators wave the flag. But all these symbols seem to say that wars, politicians, and flags are what made America great. None of these things, however, are even unique to America. They are all too common, everywhere in the world.

What was unique about America's birth was the new nation's commitment to individual freedom. And America's greatness is proportionate to that freedom - even now.

Free people create great things. They have done so in the past, and they are doing so now. This is what the Downsize DC Foundation wants to celebrate on July 4th, and on every day thereafter.

That's why we're launching the new on our nation's birthday. This new site will be the educational arm of the Downsize DC movement.

There will be two active Downsize DC websites. Downsize DC DOT ORG (, Inc.) will continue to lobby to Downsize DC, while Downsize DC DOT COM (Downsize DC Foundation) will show people why DC _should_ be downsized... in the interest of Human Progress.

Because America's greatness is proportionate to America's freedom.

Our two Downsize DC websites will have different tones.

* Dot Org will often be negative, yelling "Stop" and
"Repeal" and "Cut" and "Shut down."
* Dot Com will largely be positive, celebrating the
great things free people do to make things better,
and the potential that greater freedom has to cause
even greater American greatness.

Many organizations lament the loss of freedom, as they should. And Downsize DC Dot Org joins in this lamentation, and fights against the trend. But the new Downsize DC Dot Com will celebrate and show what freedom is actually accomplishing, all around us.

There will be several running themes to what you will find on new Downsize DC Foundation website (DOT COM). Two of the most important will be "The Race," and "The More-with-less Revolution."

"The Race" is an unrecognized contest between the constructive power of freedom, and the destructive power of government. Freedom is producing miracles everyday, while government is wreaking havoc every day. Can freedom continue to create miracles and solve problems faster than government sows destruction? We will report on this titanic race between these two mighty and opposed forces - freedom and government.

But frankly, we're betting on freedom to win "The Race." And this is largely because of "The More-with-less Revolution."

Free people are finding new ways, everyday, to do more-and-more with less-and-less. This ever expanding increase in discovery, innovation, creation, and problem-solving is so-far vastly outstripping the harm done by government.

* Big Government takes more-and-more from us all the
time. But our quality-of-life improves anyway,
because freedom causes innovation that allows us
to do more-and-more with less-and-less, even
while our government pillages us.

* Big Government tries to control more-and-more
things all the time. But freedom constantly and
obstinately innovates to find new ways around
these new central-planning regulations, to render
them obsolete and pointless, and to actually solve
the problems the regulations were intended to
address (but almost never do).

Politicians fail but free people succeed. The State blunders, but sovereign individuals innovate. Big Government moves slowly, but Liberty moves fast. Bureaucracy is stagnant, but freedom evolves. Government does less-and-less with more-and-more, but the free-market does more-and-more with less-and-less. What our government destroys, our freedom fixes.

Or, as we’ve been prone to say, "Big Government hurts, while Liberty works."

We believe the miracles and progress caused by individual freedom will always remain slightly ahead of the destruction wrought by government. But a continued lead for freedom over government in "The Race" is not enough for us. We want to widen the gap. Because the greater the lead freedom has, the more Human Progress will result. We must... Downsize DC... in the interest of human progress.

At Downsize DC Dot Com you will learn about...

* The continuous and tremendous inventions and
innovations in health care and the environment
that will enable all of us to lead longer, younger,
and healthier lives.

* Wonderful solutions to the energy crisis that will
also reduce pollution.

* Innovations that will dramatically reduce
manufacturing costs, making even the most cutting
edge advances more accessible to everyone.

* Compassionate initiatives by churches, charities,
and civic groups that are going on each day, and
producing remarkable results.

* Private security solutions to deal with problems of
crime and terrorism.

And so much more.

Success for us is defined as bringing private solutions into the public mind in such a way that political "solutions" seem clunky, expensive, damaging, and far inferior by comparison - because we want freedom to win "The Race" by a mile.

Stay tuned, Monday's not far away!

Jim Babka & Perry Willis
President & Communications Director
Downsize DC Foundation

Friday, July 01, 2005

Patriot Act: How Liberty Dies & Action Item

Our June 21 Downsizer-Dispatch message is still making the rounds. I hear back about it every day. It had a real impact, thanks to the op-ed by John Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute. We join the Dispatch message already in progress…

...I really like this piece because it hits all the most relevant points. And I'm sharing it with you to urge that you...

...Take Action!

Tell Congress what you think about the Patriot Act. The House took significant action last week stripping the "library provision," from the bill (the provision that gave government terrorism investigators the ability to obtain your library records and made it illegal for the librarian to tell you that such a request was made). But this bill has a long way to go before the final conference version that both houses of Congress will vote on. You can do so simply and quickly here:


How Liberty Dies: The Patriot Reauthorization Act
by John W. Whitehead

Do our representatives understand how we feel? Or don't they care? The recent approval by the Senate Intelligence Committee to reauthorize and expand the Patriot Act's powers leaves one wondering if Congress listens to the American people anymore.

Equally worrisome is the fact that the critical discussions and decisions surrounding expansion of the Act are taking place in secret, behind closed doors. What do our government representatives have to hide?

Since the passage of the Patriot Act six weeks after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, 378 local and county governments and seven state legislatures representing millions of Americans have passed resolutions or ordinances opposing aspects of the Patriot Act that they believe to be at odds with the United States Constitution. One City Council member from Arcata, Calif., described his town's ordinance as "a nonviolent preemptive attack" on the federal government's revision of the Bill of Rights.

Yet our government continues to ignore these concerns and push through its own agenda.

At a massive 342 pages, the Patriot Act violates at least six of the ten original amendments known as the Bill of Rights-the First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Amendments-and possibly the Thirteenth and Fourteenth as well.

The Patriot Act was rushed through Congress, even though the majority of our representatives admitted to not reading it, reassured perhaps by the inclusion of a five-year sunset provision. But that sun does not seem to be setting on this chilling piece of legislation. Instead, the Senate Intelligence Committee is not only working to make the Patriot Act permanent, but also to expand its reach.

Among some of the widely cited concerns about the Patriot Act are that it redefines terrorism so broadly that many non-terrorist political activities such as protest marches or demonstrations and civil disobedience can be considered a terrorist act; grants the FBI the right to come to your place of employment, demand your personal records and question your supervisors and fellow employees, all without notifying you; allows the government access to your medical records, school records and practically every personal record about you; allows the government to secretly demand to see records of books or magazines you've checked out in any public library and Internet sites you've visited (at least 545 libraries received such demands in the first year following passage of the Patriot Act); and most egregious of all, it allows the FBI to enter your home through the use of a special warrant, search your personal effects and confiscate your personal property without informing you that they have done so.

Yet despite the many objections to these disturbing provisions within the Patriot Act, the Senate Intelligence Committee has wholeheartedly embraced the Patriot Reauthorization Act (PAREA), which takes government intrusion into the lives of average Americans to a whole new level.

For example, one "administrative authority" provision within PAREA, which would allow the FBI to write and approve its own search orders, represents a direct assault on the Fourth Amendment's prohibitions against unreasonable search and seizure.

Yet if Congress acts to approve what critics have termed "carte blanche for a fishing expedition," the FBI will be in a position to conduct warrantless searches on people without having to show any evidence that they may be involved in criminal activities. This provision would also lift one of the last restrictions on special warrants for the FBI-namely, that the information be related to international terrorism or foreign intelligence.

Yet while government officials insist that the FBI needs additional tools to fight terrorism, a recent report suggests that all the FBI really needs to do is its job. A Justice Department report reveals that the same FBI that wants to do an end-run around our Constitution passed up on at least five chances in the months before 9/11 to locate two terrorist hijackers as they prepared for attacks on our country. The oversights were attributed to communication breakdowns, lack of urgency and bureaucratic obstacles, among other things. "What we found were sufficient deficiencies in the way the FBI handled these issues," said Inspector General Glenn Fine. In other words, if the FBI and other intelligence agencies had simply done their jobs and followed up on leads, then there wouldn't have been a need for the Patriot Act-and there certainly wouldn't be a need for warrantless searches.

While it remains questionable whether the Patriot Act has really succeeded in protecting Americans against future acts of terrorism, these highly controversial additions to the Act will unquestionably succeed in gutting the Fourth Amendment. Of all the protections found in the Constitution, the Fourth Amendment stands as the final barrier between the privacy rights of Americans and the potential for government abuse of power. But if law enforcement officials can search your home and your records without having to go through a judge, then the concept of a man's home being his castle will become as antiquated as the Model T.

Despite the fact that an increasing number of Americans are voicing their concerns about intrusions on their privacy, President Bush continues to express his support for extending the Patriot Act. One day after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Bush declared, "We will not allow this enemy to win the war by changing our way of life or restricting our freedoms." Yet if Congress succeeds in continuing to pass legislation that is at odds with our Constitution, we will have handed a definitive victory to our enemies by allowing unchecked police power to triumph over individual rights and the rule of law in this country.

At that point, our government will be no better than the dictatorships we have for so long opposed on principled grounds.

In a Jan. 2003 interview with the Los Angeles Times, constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley remarked, "Since 9/11, the Constitution has gone from an objective to be satisfied to an obstacle to national defense... As these changes mount, at what point do we become something other than a free and democratic nation?"

Americans would do well to heed the warning behind Turley's words: with every piece of Patriot Act-type legislation that Congress passes, our basic constitutional protections are being undermined and we are, indeed, moving further away from being a free and democratic nation.

To quote a recent editorial, "Is this how liberty dies?" For the sake of this great nation, I hope not.

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute and author of the award-winning "Grasping for the Wind."


Pick any reason from the ones Mr. Rutherford has given you. Cut and paste if you want. And [go here to] send a BRIEF note to your Representative and Senator telling them to let the Patriot Act go off into the "sunset."

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