L. Neil Smith's
Number 291, October 3, 2004

"The traffic jam at the spaceport was almost nonexistent"

I Refuse
by James J Odle

Special to the TLE

An open letter to the Republican/Democrat parties

When it comes to politicians, I have long believed that respect—as well as my vote—must be earned, that neither should be passed out as so much political welfare. This is a difficult goal to accomplish, as my standards are high—very high—you might even say, Mount Everest kind of high. As we shall see, they are clearly out of reach of nearly every Washingtonian politician.

So when I look over the candidates being fielded by the two major parties, I am less than impressed. There isn't a politician—(save for Congressman Ron Paul)—from either party who causes the needle on my Respectometer to as much as twitch.

With that in mind, I will say that I shall not be voting for a single Republican or Democrat politician this coming November. I refuse to vote for the lesser of the evils. If there are no viable candidates proffered for any specific race, I shall leave that spot on the ballot blank—my version of None-Of-The-Above.

Consider this letter a sort of 'performance review' on the District of Columbia.

As someone who has a few scruples....

I refuse to vote for liars. It is now known that the administration created a Lie Factory1 otherwise known as the Office of Special Plans who's entire mission was to cherry-pick intelligence data and present it in such a way as to justify the Neocons' and perhaps the president's obsession and desire for war with Iraq. There are over a thousand American soldiers dead and many more wounded as a result of this unconstitutional and unnecessary war. Saddam Hussein was never a threat to us.

It seems to never occur to these morons, that if, in fact, Saddam, did hate us, it might have something to do with the first, unnecessary Gulf War—the war where we came to the aid of thieves. {Kuwait was slant drilling for oil into Iraqi oil fields, didn't you know?} Isn't this the same group of liars who lied us into that war?

By the way, international social engineering, which is part of what the war in Iraq is about, (just listen to the Neocons) is not one of the responsibilities the Constitution bestows upon the U.S. government.

I refuse to vote for people who foolishly believe that they have the authority to pick and choose which of our rights they are going to respect, which of our rights they are going to ignore, when of our rights 'are available' to us and when of our rights 'are not available' to us, all the while deliberately forgetting that they were hired to make our rights secure. 'We' seem to have forgotten this also.

I refuse to vote for people for whom the Oath of Office to uphold the Bill of Rights and the Constitution, is a pointless, waste-of-time ritual that a politician must go through before he is handed the Ring-of-Power. When it comes to anyone in the executive branch up to and including the presidency, the act of taking the Oath requires the incumbent to confine the activities of his subordinates within the constraints imposed by the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. I will even describe it as an affirmative legal duty to do so. Further, when those subordinates commit crimes against my fellow Americans, it is his further affirmative legal duty to see to it that they are prosecuted.

Were any of the mischaracterized 'law enforcement officers' prosecuted for their crimes after the Waco and Ruby Ridge carnages? No, in both cases, the Administration came to the defense of the thugs involved. "One set of laws for me, another set of laws for thee," is the unacceptable, prevailing attitude.2

I refuse to vote for people who are so psychologically and morally crippled that they are completely unable to accept responsibility for anything that goes wrong. Whether it's the USS Vincennes,3 a vessel equipped with the latest spyware, shooting down an Iranian civilian aircraft during the Reagan administration, or FDR blaming the government failure that was the Great Depression on an 'unbridled free market' (WRONG!)4 or Clinton blaming2 the Branch Davidians for the massacre at Waco, incumbent politicians refuse to 'own-up' for causing the troubles they get us into. It would give the opposition party ammunition for the next election and they might lose some of their precious power.

You see, as far as our national politicians and bureaucrats are concerned, it wasn't Lon Horiuchi's fault for shooting Vickie Weaver while she was holding a baby in her arms. Lon only followed orders like a good little robot and pulled the trigger. It was Vickie Weaver's fault for standing in the way of the bullet! Now, if Vickie had only ducked.....

Believe it or not, top-level bureaucrats actually 'think' this way.

I refuse to vote for people who give 'medals of valor' to naval crews who shoot down Iranian civilian aircraft4 as well as 'law enforcement' people who shoot children in the back.5

I refuse to vote for people who believe that government employees should not be held accountable in their personal, individual capacity when they stomp on our Constitutional rights.6 According to Professor of Constitutional Law, Butler Schaffer,7 it's been over 200 years since any judge has been impeached and prosecuted for not upholding our Constitutional rights. Not a record to be proud of.

I refuse to vote for people who believe that government employees should have more power over the education of children than the parents do, or over an adult's decision to take whatever drugs he wants.

I refuse to vote for people who believe that the DEA should have the power to pull a doctor's medical license should such an individual become 'overly enthusiastic' with the pain medication. This is a barbaric and unconscionable practice. Why should law enforcement officers have authority over a better educated and more highly trained doctor's medical decisions? Sound like practicing medicine without a license, to me. Hell, I refuse to vote for people who believe that the DEA should be in existence.

I refuse to vote for people who, in turn, refuse to learn anything from the real world, if learning and applying such knowledge would cost them some of their power. Anyone who supports the 90-year failure that is the War on Drugs8 cannot be safely entrusted with serious thinking. Likewise anyone who supports gun control laws (actually victim disarmament laws) or socialized medicine after demonstrable failures taking place in Canada, England and Australia has yet to have a confrontation with reality.

I refuse to vote for people who practice crony capitalism and call it 'free enterprise.' 9

I refuse to vote for people who pass garbage like 'the McCain-Feingold Campaign Finance Reform Act'10 otherwise known as the "I'm Corrupt, And Its All Your Fault" act or if you prefer, the 'Stop Me Before I Take Another Bribe!" act. The First Amendment prohibited the passage of any such legislation. Here's a thought. How about 'Just saying no!' the next time someone wants to pass a bribe? No one can bribe a politician if he's not available to be bribed, you see.

In a world of steadily increasing competition for diminishing oil supplies, I refuse to vote for people who allow the EPA to continue to mandate the inclusion of oxygenates such as MTBE and ethanol in gasoline. Oxygenates cause vehicles to burn fuel at a faster rate than normal fuel as oxygenated fuels contain less energy, which in turn means that cars burn more fuel to do the same amount of work.

Further, it now appears that neither ethanol nor MTBE make our air cleaner11, EPA Blue Ribbon panel claims to the contrary12. Beware of policy decisions based on crap science. Also, MTBE is a potential human carcinogen.13

Four years ago, the EPA said it was going to phase out MTBE14. Four years later and we're still waiting for the phase out.

We libertarians have mastered the fine art of phasing things out! Its' really very simple: 1) Use up the existing supplies, 2) Don't make any more! This simple concept apparently boggles the 'minds' of the EPA.

If, as it has been suggested, that oxygenates do not make the air we breathe cleaner, then why do politicians impose them on us? One possibility, in the case of ethanol, is that it allows politicians to buy votes from corn growers with other peoples' money via an indirect subsidy. Another possibility is that much of what politicians do is about appearances. It is vitally important, to politicians, to create the impression among the ignorant, no nothing masses that they 'care,' even when they are deliberately doing something stupid. It all comes down to votes.

So, to the two dominant parties, as you can see, there is tremendous room for some serious improvement on your part.

Clean up your Act!—If you can and if you dare.

Otherwise, people like me will not be able to take you seriously, when you're flapping your lips about 'civil rights,' 'moral clarity,' the 'Rule of Law,' and about the Constitution.


1 By Robert Dreyfuss and Jason Vest "The Lie Factory" http://www.motherjones.com/news/feature/2004/01/12_405.html

2 James Bovard, "Feeling Your Pain" The Explosion and Abuse of Power in the Clinton-Gore Years, Chapters 15-17.

3 James Bovard, Terrorism and Tyranny, Trampling Freedom,Justice, and Peace to Rid The World of Evil, pgs. 28-9.

4 Jim Powell, FDR's Folly: How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression, the entire book.

5 James Bovard, "Feeling Your Pain" The Explosion and Abuse of Power in the Clinton-Gore Years, p.299

6 IBID, p.302, The Justice Department and the FBI defended their refusal to give Horiuchi and his superiors the royal prosecutions they deserved on the grounds that doing so "would have an enormously chilling effect on federal operations, especially 'law enforcement.'"

7 May 27, 2004 radio interview with Ernie Hancock, http://www.ernesthancock.com/archive/index.shtml

8 Joel Miller, Bad Trip: How the War Against Drugs Is Destroying America, [long URL] or Mike Gray's, Drug Crazy: How We Got Into This Mess and How We Can Get Out, [long URL]

9 Kevin Phillips, American Dynasty, The Enron-Haliburton chapters

10 http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d107:s.00027:

11 http://www.rppi.org/ethanoltestimony.html
also http://www.tsrtp.ucdavis.edu/mtberpt/

12 http://www.epa.gov/OMS/consumer/fuels/oxypanel/blueribb.htm

13 http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0907/is_1_55/ai_61182077

14 http://www.cnn.com/2000/NATURE/03/20/mtbe/

James J. Odle is a splendid fellow who, unlike the vast majority of so-called 'public servants' has a real job in the private sector performing real work, which a real employer voluntarily pays him to perform. He is also a Life Member of Gun Owners of America.


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