COMMUNITY VOICES | Breaking News! Obama is not a candidate for anything.

Shocking isn’t it? Barack Obama is running for no office, has no expressed political ambitions, and likely will never be a candidate again. But, you would not know it from those who have attacked him personally, often unfairly,  and in some cases with unrelenting scorn.The common allegations claim he is a Communist (and turning our country into a Socialist)  state…was not born an American citizen and is an illegitimate President (yes those guys are still out there)…is a closet Muslim (but still under the influence of Pastor Wright)… that he is an agent of the Anti-Christ … and there is even a tiny “impeach” contingent that works tirelessly on their fruitless agenda. Continue Reading

COMMUNITY VOICES | The American Revolution II

The idea that America is heading into an all out revolution may be absurd and to some extent unthinkable to most of us. Never the less, the factors that could ignite such an event are quietly coming into place, and although not imminent, they are plausible. Especially if the trends that are creating them are not reversed. At any rate, the possibility is worth examining – along with hopeful reasons why such an event may be deterred.(Author’s note: Please be aware I am not proposing, advocating, suggesting, or encouraging the actions described below; this diary is designed for commentary and discussion)The causes of most revolutions are historical, well known, and provable. It virtually is always a rebellion against an elite, defined by excessive concentration of power and wealth. Continue Reading

COMMUNITY VOICES | Winners and losers in the Obama investigations

Seems pretty obvious, doesn’t it…Obama in a lose/lose position in what is a trifecta of attacks on his administration. But not so fast!  There are nuances, blowback, and a variety of mitigating circumstances which make this conclusion not as obvious as it seems. And some reasons are even counter-intuitive.LOSER: Congress. With ratings already in the toilet, anyone who follows (mostly conservative) congress people on television has to notice their sanctimonious and disingenuous concern about our nation’s future claiming an IRS seemingly out of control; and the DOJ unconstitutionally grabbing  phone records from the AP. Was all this wrong? Sure, but it is not placing our great country on the verge of collapse as some have actually claimed. Continue Reading

COMMUNITY VOICES | Something good from the gun bill defeat

Without a doubt, one of the great movies of all time was The Wizard of Oz. In the end, Dorothy (actually her dog Toto) had the nerve to pull back the curtain and learn the truth about the Wizard – just an old man pulling a bunch of levers that made lots of smoke, noise…and fear.  Very similar to what happened to the now defeated gun control bill in the Senate.Once we have pulled back the curtain, the truth emerges.  Some folks pulling a bunch of levers. However, in this case, pulling the curtain back presents us with two vital lessons: the general power of lobbyists in our political system, and the NRA’s ability to use them. If that brings change, perhaps we can get something good out of the gun control defeat. Most Americans would be shocked if they understood how potent lobbying is in our Congress as just happened during the Senate vote on background checks.  Examining some statistics at the Federal level in 2011, where there are good numbers available, there was $3.3 Billion spent on lobbying in Washington; that is double the amount spent just ten years earlier. That supported 12,719 registered lobbyists – and some quick math tells us that there were 23 lobbyists for every one of the 535 members of Congress that year.  Or stated another way, there are about 14,000 people who work on the Hill – so there is about one lobbyist for every staffer in Congress. (Local side note: in 2011 there were 1496 registered lobbyists in the State of Minnesota – about 7 ½ for each legislator. They spent over $65 million on lobbying our 201 legislators, or about $325,000 each). Which brings us to another travesty in this system of lobbying and influence; the incestuous relationship between K Street and Congress. Continue Reading

OPINION | Welcome new (fertilized egg) citizens

No, this is not about immigration, or becoming an American citizen – the “new citizens” in this piece are the newly fertilized ovum who will become “persons” upon conception, if the advocates of “personhood” have their way. That’s right, these tiny little eggs will have all the rights, privileges, and duties of new citizens immediately conferred upon them, as proposed by organizations such as Personhood USA. And already they have had “personhood” successes.Most notably in our neighboring state of North Dakota, where they have successfully gotten personhood granted upon the first sign of a heartbeat (usually about 10 weeks); and as a person, “killing” the embryo would be a crime equivalent to murder. Consequently doctors who would violate this dictum would also be subject to prosecution and severe penalties. (Note: Roe vs. Continue Reading

OPINION | Is the presidential election over?

Silly me. I guess I must have missed it? Maybe, like Rip Van Winkle, who slept through the American Revolution, perhaps I didn’t notice that there really was an election; and apparently Obama won.  Why would I come to this conclusion? Because here in March of 2013, it seems to me that presidential politics are still in full swing.Just the other day, House Speaker Boehner stated that Obama was not interested in avoiding sequester, and was just “campaigning”. Campaigning? Continue Reading

FREE SPEECH ZONE | What we REALLY should learn from this election

Commenting on the recent election in well regarded post mortems, various pundits have cogently described what the ramifications of Barack Obama’s reelection will mean to the country. Most seem astute – but missing from these analyses was probably the most important consequence we could and should learn from this election. That would be a careful look at the election process itself in America today. And, it isn’t pretty.Free Speech ZoneThe Free Speech Zone offers a space for contributions from readers, without editing by the TC Daily Planet. This is an open forum for articles that otherwise might not find a place for publication, including news articles, opinion columns, announcements and even a few press releases. Continue Reading

FREE SPEECH ZONE | The invisible Americans

In this seemingly unending political campaign, these words are reverently uttered dozens of times: “the middle class”.  But there is one group that is rarely mentioned by either party, and nev

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FREE SPEECH ZONE | Voter ID Amendment runs contrary to American history and Constitutional traditions

Politics is always full of contradictions, and hypocrisy, but a significant one now in play is the proposed amendment toMinnesota’s Constitution to require a more restrictive voter ID. Adding to this is the irony that many of those who favor this amendment are adamant about their fidelity to our American Constitution and historic values regarding elections.Well, actually this proposed amendment runs contrary to the way our Constitution was ratified…the changes it sparked regarding voter rights…and the 225 year history of voter enhancing enfranchisement in our nation.Prior to the Revolutionary War, and subsequent ratification of the Constitution, the American electorate was modeled after most European nations – dominated by monarchs and with enfranchisement to vote highly restricted and limited to wealthy males, often connected to royalty.  Thus, at birth, we too were far from a “democratic” nation. The process of ratifying our Constitution changed that and stimulated a powerful desire for voter reform. Indeed, that was an essential element of what the Revolutionary War was about.Consequently, when it came to ratifying the Constitution in the period of 1787-1790 (when it was finally adopted) it was at that point in history the greatest, broadest, most unrestricted voter plebiscite in the history of mankind. It was the first time that the people of a nation freely determined their form of government. Continue Reading