Sunday, February 28, 2010

Purim: If Esther Was a Spy in These Days at This Season . . .

. . . and Mordechai had to deal with the U.N.

Today is Purim, the hilarious holiday when we celebrate the death of that evil Haman, the one who tried to annihilate the Jews of Shushan in Persia (now called Iran).

We interrupt this discussion to bring you a correction from the UN: Of course Haman was completely justified in his desire to annihilate the Jews of Shushan, because by their very existence they made sure that not everyone would bow to Haman's will, nor will they accept that his culture requires their demise.

In any case, on Purim, nothing is sacred and the politically correct becomes the politically incorrect, and even the rabbis get drunk enough so that they cannot tell the difference between "Baruch Mordechai!" (Bless Mordechai) and "Kalal Haman!" (Curse Haman). Mordechai is the hero who organized Jewish self-defense in Shushan.

We interrupt this discussion to bring you another correction from the UN: Political incorrectness is never allowed, especially if it relates to Jews defending themselves. No matter what the provocation, the UN policy of moral equivalence requires that we condemn Mordechai the Jew's defense of his people as wrong as Haman's attempt to annihilate them, and even more so. After all, Mordechai is a Jew. In some way, he must be associated with Israel. And anyway, the UN supports initiatives to disarm all law-abiding citizens so that they cannot defend themselves.

In any case, Purim is indeed one of those quintessential Jewish holidays upon which we say:
"They tried to kill us. We won. Let's eat!"

We interrupt this discussion to bring you yet another announcement from the UN: The Jews won in those days at this season, but we cannot not allow them to win now. It is the requirement of the religion of Achmadinajad (a descendent of Amalek) of Iran (it used to be Persia), the current reigning Haman, to bring the 12th Iman to power by annihilating the Jews. The current strategy to do so is to wipe Israel (a.k.a. 'the small Satan') off the map using powerful weapons of mass destruction. Since this is a religious quest, the Jews of Israel--in the spirit of fairness and multiculturalism--should do their part and be annihilated in order to fulfill the religious requirements of the son of Amalek.

Unfortunately, we must also say:
"So many Haman's, and only one Purim.

Remember, don't forget to blot out the name of Amalek."

And now, Latma's 'Tribal Report' brings us the latest on Queen Esther (a.k.a. 'Hadassah') and her espionage right in the Royal Palace at Shushan and who has been offended by the cost of her iniative to save her people:

Utzu eitza v'tufar. Dabru davar v'lo yakum.
Ki emanu El!
Make your plans --they will be annulled. Scheme against us--it will not avail.
For the Eternal is with us!

Happy Purim! Let's nosh on Hammentaschen!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

R3volution: Liberty First!

What are rights? If you have to ask permission from someone, it's not a right. If only some people are given a pass on an issue, it's not a right. A right accrues to you as a person, and must be exercised wherever you are, regardless of what others might think or do.

In the United States, our natural rights to life, liberty and property are proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence, and they are protected in the Constitution. But the Constitution does not "give" us our rights. Rather it forbids the federal government from violating them. Specific rights are described in the Bill of Rights--the first ten amendments to the Constitution--but the 9th and 10th amendments make it clear that our rights are unenumerable, whereas the privileges we grant the federal government are enumerated and circumscribed. And since the Constitutions of all of the several states also pledge to protect the natural rights of every citizen, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights apply in every state.

Every government functionary, from every branch of federal government, state government, and the military, swears an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. These people have no obligation or loyalty to any politician, any other government official or any other person. Their sole obligation is to the Constitution of the United States, and their function is always to defer to and protect the rights of the citizens of the United States for whom they work. This means that every senator, representative, military person, sheriff, lawyer or police officer is obligated to uphold every provision of the United States Constitution. This is one of the ways in which that document serves to protect our rights. (Please check out Oathkeepers and No Sheriff Left Behind to see how the military and our peace officers can do their office and protect our rights).

But we only have the rights we assert are ours. If we allow the violation of our rights, if we ask permission to exercise our rights, we have abdicated them. Our rights travel with us wherever we go. As Michael Badnarik says in "It's Good to be King!", our rights exist wherever our feet land. Therefore, if we are to reverse the terrible violation of our rights in the growing police state in the United States, it is important to exercise our rights, even when it is inconvenient to do so. We must do so politely and firmly, without iniation of force against anyone (which is a violation of the rights of others), but we must do it.

The other day the Liberty Kids, traveling in New Orleans as part of the Southern Tour of Operation Defuse (in conjunction with the Liberty Restoration Project and Texans for Responsible Government), encountered a potential violation of their rights when their car was pulled over on suspicion of a traffic violation. The officer asked for the ID's of everyone in the car, including passengers. Only the driver, since he has signed a contract by obtaining a driver's license and is driving on public roads, is required to show his license. All others are not required except when the officer can cite a probable cause that each has personally violated the law. (There is no collective responsibility for any crime in the United States. That would be a violation of individual rights).

One of the Liberty Kids, Catherine 'Conintelpro' Bleish, refused to give over her ID thus asserting her rights. She politely requested to be informed of what crime the officer was accusing her of, and she also informed the officer that the whole encounter was being streamed live on the web through three different computers in the car. The whole episode may be viewed at Qik, here.

In watching--or more accurately listening, it was dark--two aspects of the encounter were especially interesting. The first was that the officer was uninformed about the Constitutional rights of the passengers in the car. He called for extreme back-up--6 squad cars--and tried to tell Catherine that it was not necessary for her to stream the encounter. She replied that on the contrary, it was "very necesssary" and continued to stream. This alerted the grassroots of the R3volution movement. The second was that it became somewhat of a standoff when Catherine requested that the officer show her the law. Because between the live streaming and Twitter, the R3volution grassroots who were monitering Qik and Twitter, quickly pulled up the relevant Louisiana Statute and case law and the Liberty Kids had all the information before the police did.

The Liberty kids also cited the Fourth Amendment:

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures, Shall not be Violated, and no Warrents shall Issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or Affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

The officer refused to listen to the citation of the Constitution that he was sworn to uphold, walking away, probably because he was unable to bully the Liberty Kids.

Of course, the Liberty Kids driver got a ticket, and the whole stand-off took about forty minutes. But as the cop walked away, the Liberty Kids wished him a good night, told him that he served a beautiful city, and then called out "Liberty First!" The cops pulled away, "tails between their legs" according to John Bush, Texas Libertarian.

Liberty First! It means taking the time to assert our rights, to act as free human beings, to politely the forcefully demand that our public servants understand their duty to the Constitution.

Liberty First! It means that all of us should carry a United States Constitution and the Constitutions of our respective states in the glove box with the registration information. We should politely assert our rights in any encounters with our servants, the peace officers. They have forgotten that their duty is not "to arrest and detain", rather it is to "protect and serve." Protect our rights and serve us. It is our duty as their employers to educate them so that they understand that they are to be Peace Officers, not law-enforcement. The Engineering Geek and I plan to carry extra copies to give to the officers upon any such encounter.

Liberty First! It means that we all should equip ourselves to photograph and record every encounter with our public servants, so that we have a record of what happened. When they know they are being recorded, they will be more likely to remember their place and their duty, even if they have never read the Constitution they have sworn to uphold. If we can live stream or twitter with the grassroots, so much the better. Transparency is more than a political campaign promise, easily violated. It is our protection against a police state.

Liberty First! Foremost! And always!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Another Road Trip: Socorro and Catron County


Before the big snowstorm hit last night, Flat Ryan and I went with the Professional Revolutionary and another friend, to Socorro and Catron Counties in west-central New Mexico to hike around some different properties the friend was looking at. It was a great opportunity for a roadtrip before the snow began.

The Ladron fault block, topped with snow, can be seen behind the the stabilized dune field at the confluence of the Rio Puerco and the Rio Grande.

A wilderness area in the Barrel Hills in northern Socorro County, outside of Magadalena, NM.
There was much evidence of volcanism in the rocks, including a brecciated welded tuff in the small arroyo in the center of the picture. We hiked the arroyo, a warm microclime on a windy day.

A spring, a small source of water, at the base of the bank of the arroyo. The water accounts for the presence of willow growing in abundance in an otherwise desert plant ecosystem. The welded tuff forms the bank, and brecciated volcanics form the darker rock at the top.

We stopped at the rest stop on US 60 so that Flat Ryan could get his picture taken in front of the Very Large Array. He's blurred because of the strong wind and the distant camera focus. Behind him is the old San Augustin glacial lakebed, with the VLA buildings and two radio antenna's in the mid foreground. The lakebed appears to run all the way to the San Mateo Mountains.

Clouds build over the ridges of the San Mateo Mts. above Highway 12 at Datil, NM. They are harbingers of the oncoming snowstorm that hit the state today.

After getting stuck in the mud at a property southwest of Datil, we drove back across to Socorro and dinner, then home.

A good day. Wonderful company and interesting geology.

I think I want to live in Catron County.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Joe Stack's Act of Desperation

Now that the man is dead by his own hand, and a bystander also, the MSM, blogs and pundits are by-and-large spinning the desperate actions of a desperate man in order to further their particular agendas. According to some, he was a delusional tea-partier, and according to others, a dangerous maniac. I don't believe he was either.

When I heard Glenn Beck using quotes from Stack's suicide note, inferring that all political ideas are either right or left, I though about another desperate act back in 1938, when Herschel Grynszpan assassinated the National Socialist official, Ernst von Rath. Grynszpan's act of desperation was precipitated by the deportation of his parents, Polish-Jewish nationals, by the National Socialist government. There are many differences between the two incidents, but the sense of desperation that emanated from each man's story was the same. Both had seen their lives made into a living hell by the actions of tyrannical bureaucrats.

The IRS operates as a kind of revenue Gestapo, using police powers they technically do not have to raid homes and businesses, seize property, and destroy lives of citizens, who are assumed to be guilty unless they can prove themselves innocent. Instead of trial by jury with an impartial judge, citizens are held accountable to a tax-code that even government experts admit is incomprehensible and contradictory. They must answer to the IRS in office procedures called audits, and are judged by their accusers--agents and accountants--working for the IRS. (My former mother-in-law once told me that "there is nothing quite like an audit to make you hate your government").
The IRS creates impossible situations for ordinary citizens every day of the year and at the same time ignores the tax evasion of Executive Department "czars" and Congress-critters. We find ourselves once again, just as in the National Socialist regime, with a government of men and not law. The injustice of it should be enough to make the blood of every American citizen boil.

Like hundreds of thousands of Americans, Joe Stack was caught in the impossible catch-22 that is the United States Tax Code. Like millions of us, he recognized the injustice of it. And tragically, horribly, he thought there was no way out but to end his life and destroy the life of a bystander.
Although I do not condone such violence, I can imagine the sense of desparation that created these circumstances for this ordinary citizen. His suicide manifesto is not the writing of an insane person. Rather it tells the story of careless, faceless bureaucrats who stole the livelihoods of skilled technical contractors via the stroke of a legislative pen.

And that should be sobering to all of us, who are also bystanders--no more innocent than anyone who works for the IRS--to the pain of our fellow citizens who have been robbed of work, home and family by a rogue government agency operating outside the framework of the United States Constitution. The founding generation understood that taxation without representation--taxation to pay for the wars and frivoloties of a privileged class--was theft. In the Declaration of Independence the listing of the Crimes of the King includes their experience of the domestic terror visited upon them when they refused to cooperate in the theft of their livelihoods.

Many of the bloggers and pundits of the MSM will undoubted spin for us the tale of Joe Stack, the anti-government, homegrown terrorist. But the IRS that is committing acts of terror against American citizens every day of the year. It is no accident that the letters I.R.S. are the most feared three letters in the Amercian vocabulary.

As bystanders, we are not and cannot be innocent. Rather, we must acknowlege the terror perpetrated against us by our own government. And we must choose how we will respond. If we do not choose, we bear the responsibility of knowing that evil was being perpetrated against our countrymen and we did nothing to stop it.

What must we do? We have no right to initiate force against anyone. But we do have the the right to respond to force initiated against our persons and our property by disciplined and peaceful means. It is our responsibility to loudly and consistently withdraw our sanction from a government that violates our rights on a daily basis. There are many ways to begin to do so. One is by reading the Articles of Freedom and signing the pledge to stand with a goodly number of Americans in support of our natural right to life, liberty and property.

On April 15, Tea Parties around the country will be sponsoring rallies outside local IRS offices. We need to be there to let our government and its odious agencies know that we recognize their illegal acts against us and our fellow citizens. Also on April 15, many of us will participate in a National Strike during which we: Don't Buy. Don't Comply. Ask why.

We must not let our liberty be taken from us while we stand idly by and watch our neighbors bleed.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

You Must Agree . . .

Some of my conversations with certain friends have become annoying because at the point where I say, "Look, I disagree with you on the very premises you are asserting", they respond by saying, "But you have to research this thoroughly." And when I respond, "I have looked into it enough to satisfy myself that these premises are false," they then respond, "Well, you haven't researched it enough!" Often they then begin explaining very loudly what the premises are again, although I already know what they are, as if I am dense and if it can just be explained loudly enough and slowly enough, I will have to agree. This makes me very impatient because I have a life to live outside of entertaining ab endless supply of pet crackpot theories.

The current crackpot theory that has become a series of annoying stand-offs is the cherished myth among some patriots that a group of some private individuals incoporated the United States without the knowledge of the government of the people, and that this legal maneuver renders us subjects to Corp USA rather than citizens whose rights are protected by the Constitution. They tend to assert a great deal of case law that may or may not be related to what they are saying.

Now I have very little training in the subtleties of case law, but my education as a scientist has trained me to look for problems in the logic of an argument as well as in the evidence presented. And when someone makes the statement "But you have to research this topic, whatever it is, to my satisfaction before you can disagree with me on it," I recognize that we have moved from any well-constructed presentation of facts and/or theory to a desperate attempt at coercion. In other words, this is another way to to force the argument to continue beyond reason; to hammer away at it until the other party can be pushed to concede by sheer exhaustion.

In my work as a scientist, I did not consider it my obligation to research and refute every crackpot theory that someone with no background in the particular discipline can dream up. Such distractions from the work at hand would have been a waste of my time, because in order to actually convince such a person of the problems with the idea, I would have had to give them an education in the basic science of the discipline and any related ones as well. And most of the time, the person would have simply refused to listen, or would refuse to accept the basic laws and scientific principles, leaving us no place from which to build agreement based on knowledge.

For example, there are those people out there who are desperate to convince the world that they have discovered the secret to a perpetual motion machine. And they can and will argue ad infinitum that such machines have been invented, but have been supressed by "establishment science" because the advance would destroy their monopoloy on "big oil" or whatever. The point that if such a thing were possible it would not only overturn all of Newtonian physics, as well as the laws of thermodynamics, but would also be impossible to hide is impossible to get across to such a person. And he will run kicking and screaming from any demonstration of the validity of these rock-solid scientific principles or claim that he is being snowed by "book learning." And yet, those who advance such arguments have never been able to produce the machine itself or explain how it would work to bring something out of nothing. It is always out there "somewhere", hidden by some persecuted genius, an amorphous claim without any real physical or theoretical evidence.

Such a claim is based on faith rather than reason. There is no way to have a rational argument about an object of someone else's non-rational faith. It is as futile as entertaining an argument about whether the head of a pin will hold 10 or 20 dancing angels. And if the weary recipient of such an argument says, "I have examined the evidence to my satisfaction and I do not agree that there are angels dancing on the head of the pin," she will be treated to the loud assertion that if she would only research it properly, she would would change her mind and "believe" in angels. But belief is not predicated on evidence, and requires no research.

With respect to any such argument, I really don't have to do very much research at all to dismiss the claim. All I have to do is suss out the the premises upon which the claim is built. In the case of the perpetual motion machine, one premise is that the large-scale universe does not operate by Newtonian mechanics. And since Newton's three laws of motion are scientific laws--that is they have been not only demonstrated over and over by observation, but mathematically supported--the premise is false. If the arguer wants to continue to believe this false premise, he must do so without the help of science or reason. And if he desperately tries to force such an argument, that only indicates the non-rational nature of the claim.

So to with the argument about the claim that a private corporation has taken over the United States, although the argument here does not hearken back to scientific law, but rather legal principles. I do not have to be a lawyer to know that the Constitution of the United States is the Charter that any legislation, statute, or ordinance must not violate. Further, the Constitution itself is a guarantee of the natural rights of individuals declared to be unalienable in the Declaration of Independence.

The premise of the "Corp USA" claim is that it would be lawful to secretly enslave the entire population of the country, so that by filing a birth certificate or obtaining a driver's license, one is automatically subject to a corporate contract that he must then go to court to become free. The premise is false, because it would be a violation of the natural rights of the individual, as well as a violation of the Constitution of the United States to so enslave an individual or subject him to an unknowing contract. In a word, such action would be unlawful. Therefore, even if a group of people actually formed a conspiracy to turn the United States into a private corporation, and even if all the t's were crossed and the i's dotted, and the papers were filed, they would be null and void. And even if the courts were in on the conspiracy, the proper action of the people of the United States would be to impeach the courts, not to plead with them.

I do not need to waste any time reading pages and pages of arguments about case law or precendent in order to satisfy myself that the claim is false because I disagree with the basic premise. Thus the proper answer to the assertion that I need to do any research at all, is:
"I don't have to do anything. I am a free human being with a life to live. And if that is your only argument, you are wasting my time and yours."

Sunday, February 14, 2010

February Roadtrip: Roundtrip Alamogordo


It has been a record winter here in central New Mexico for snow and cold. El Nino has prepared us for a mild fire season this coming spring and summer. But in the meantime, a three day weekend, and a visit by Sheriff Richard Mack to Alamogordo's 2nd Amendment Task Force made it impossible to resist an overnight road trip to the warm southern part of the state.

Accompanying me and the Engineering Geek south were my business partner, the Professional Revolutionary, and Flat Ryan, who had arrived by mail from Atlanta. Flat Ryan is here to learn the geography and culture of New Mexico for a few months in order to teach his three-dimensional avatar upon his return to Geogia. He appears in two of the pictures below.

We took the 40 east to Moriarty, and then drove south through Estancia to Willard, where we cut southeast through Cedarvale to Corona.

Shortly after leaving Willard, we encountered a windfarm perched on the northeastern edge of the magnificent Chupadera Mesa. Below the very space-age looking electricity-generating windmills, was an old fashioned windmill used to pump water for cattle.

In the lobby of the Flickinger Theatre in
Alamogordo, Sheriff Richard Mack poses
with Flat Ryan before giving his speech on
based on his book by the same title.

Sheriff Mack, of Graham County, Arizona,
was one of two plantiffs for the Printz-Mack
that reaffirmed that the County Sheriff is
the highest officer in his county, and has the
responsibility to protect his people against coercion by federal agents of any kind.

After the event, we went to a Patriot Alliance Reception sponsored by Alamagordo 2ATF, the Lea County Tea
Party Patriots, and our own New Mexico Patriot Alliance.

It was very nice down south, with temperatures in the 50's and 60's during the day, with a gentle southeastern breeze.
Allof my long sleeved clothes seemed suddenly too warm, and I put the winter coat in the trunk, using only a hoodie at night. Wonderful!

align="left">But Sierra Blanca had more snow on it than I had ever seen, reminding us that this very cold, wet winter is not yet complete. So we stopped near Oscura to take pictures near an old railroad trestle that spanned one of the Three Rivers.

After stopping in Carrizozo for a cold Cherry Cider,
we cut across Chupadera Mesa on NM 55, instead
of going around it through Corona and Cedervale.

We stopped in Claunch, where the Library doubles as
the Post Office, and then took Flat Ryan on a short
tour of the Gran Quivera site of the Salinas
posing in front of a pair of manos and matates,
used by the native women for grinding maize.

From GQ through Mountainair, and then the last leg of the trip home, along the Manzano Mountains. Here, we stopped near Toreon to get a rare picture of the entirel Estancia Basin covered with snow. In the distance (middle right), blow-out dunes outline the form of a beach berm, formed when Glacial Lake Estancia filled this basin up to 7000 years b.p.

Years ago, I worked on the Glacial Lake Estancia project, identifying microfossils--ostracods--that grew in that lake. By looking at the relative numbers of various species, we could tell when the lake was rising and when it was receding.

The snow in the picture, beautiful as it is, indicated to us that we had returned to the frozen north! Thank goodness, no more snow is predicted until later in the week.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Value of a Life

In a free-wheeling discussion with a friend the other day, I was broadsided by a comment that did not seem to fit with his libertarian views. The subject had wandered around to the controversy about the Tebow ad during the Super Bowl. And he asked me what I thought about very late term abortions.

I said that I had real moral issues with that, because I could not imagine a situation in which delivery could not be attempted, with the hopes of saving the life of both mother and child. And I had looked but found no information that contradicted my conclusions. I pointed out that I had developed severe pre-eclampsia late in my pregnancy with the Boychick, a condition that required induction of labor in order to save my life and that of the Boychick. Fortunately for me, it was not a difficult decision because the delivery would be less of a risk for me than continuing the pregnacy would have been, and we were so close to term, the Boychick and I, that delivery was not likely to be risky for him either. As it turned out, with the help of modern medicine, we came through the delivery fine, both of us and the neonatal team that was standing by filed out of the room without making any interventions. That said, I told my friend, I would not have wanted a government official interfering with such a potentially life-altering decision. I would not want some bureaucrat to require me to undergo an induction of labor. However, I would expect that doctors would be rightly reluctant to perform late-term abortions.

With this as a jumping off point, my friend commented that he wondered if a murder should be prosecuted if no one cared about the death of the person who had been killed. After all, he said, the dead person would be dead, and if no one was left to be devasted, then it was if the life of the person was unimportant.

I was speechless. One can know a person reasonably well and still be surprised.

I probed. I asked, then does that mean if the parents of a six-month infant murder him, and there is no one else to be outraged, does this mean it is not murder? He said he would have moral concerns about such an action, but that it should not be illegal since no one was injured by the action except the child--who would now be dead.

Immediately, images of concentration camps and gas chambers began to roll across my mind's eye. My argument was that certainly someone has been harmed, and that is the person whose life had been taken unjustly. My friend argued that people die all the time.

Of course, we are mortal, I argued, but there is a difference between dying of disease or accident, and the purposeful taking of a life. Certainly, the person who is murdered values his life. And as we were speaking, I realized that my friend had wandered into a collectivist view of the value of a life. His value of liberty was not completely based on the principle of individual rights. Because if his values were firmly rooted there, he would realize immediately that the value of a life is not based on how useful to society, or how precious that person is to another. The value of a life is the ultimate value to person himself.

I was so disturbed that I stopped the discussion when I realized that all of my attempts to elucidate the principle had not penetrated my friends mind; that to him this had become a sophist's argument--made for the sake of continuing the discussion.

For me, the inheritance of the Holocaust makes these discussions more than argument for the sake of argument. As we spoke, the biblical injunction about the responsiblity of the nearby towns to adjudicate the death of a stranger on the road kept coming to mind.
Even the taking of the life of a stranger for whom no one cares must be treated with justice.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Hit and Run Snowstorm


We knew a storm was coming.
It was supposed to be mostly rain,
with snow tonight at the higher elevations.
We were expecting 3 to 5 inches.
It started snowing this morning at 8 AM.
And we got a foot.
More to come tonight.

One foot today means approximately
two feet on the back patio.
With wind blowing snow off the roof,
we now have three foot drifts
in the lee of the house.

This storm packed quite a punch.
Hours of blizzard conditions closed
the 40 between Albuquerque and

The Engineering Geek left work before
the highway closed--and he got through
until the bottom of our hill. The car is there
and he is here--thanks to a neighbor.
The Boychick is with a friend who lives
close to school. Maybe he will come home tonight!

Umbrae loves the snow.
He ran, played, and dug deep
to get at sticks and grass.
Coming inside was not on his agenda.
But staying outside was not on mine!

The snowplow came around just at 5 PM.
Now there are 2-3 foot piles of snow,
all along our road.

Lily didn't mind climbing it,
but Shayna stayed on the
plowed area.

Now this is quite enough. We will probably have snow cover until mid-March this year!

January Moon, February Cross Quarter


The January 2010 full moon appears to be the largest of the year, because this moon is the closest to the earth. Mars, in opposition, actually passed by the moon on Friday night, although the appeture of my camera was not large enough to catch it.

Moonset on January 30, 2010.
The moon appeared to be very large,
and the air was very clear. Here the moon
stands over the Sandia Mountain front, just before it slipped behind the mountains and under the western horizon.

Although frontal clouds had begun to come up from the south, indicating stormy weather tomorrow, the rising sun shows pink and orange on South Mountain, and lights up the houses on
Rancho Verde Hill.

February cross-quarter sunrise from the top of Los Pecos in the high meadow. On the Winter Solstice the sun rose about two fingers to the right, and as the Old Calendar spring progresses, the sunrise will appear further to the left on this picture.

One of the delights of living in the mountains is the opportunity to see the sun rise more than once on a single day. The Ground Hog's Day sunrise redux--from a lower point on the road at the lower end of the high mead0w. At the winter solstice, the sun rose straight above the road in this picture.

Although clouds were coming in, the Ground Hog saw his shadow, and by legend this means six more weeks of winter.

Although I saw the sunrise twice-- I said one blessing: ". . . who forms light and creates darkness, who makes wholeness and fashions all things." I am sure to the ancients, the progress of the sunrise appearing further and further north with each passing week must have been an entirely reassuring sight.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Articles of Freedom: The New Website

The R3volution continues . . .

I am proud to annouce that the Articles of Freedom Website has now been launched and that I had a teeny, tiny part to play in the drama! One of the two webmasters launched it from my kitchen--and in our excitement and because we were distracted--I forgot to feed him!

A sorry come-down for the Mother of the R3volution NM.

The Articles of Freedom represent the work of the Continental Congress 2009, and several versions have been distributed on the web. Each of the 15 Articles present the facts about one Constitutional violation that our servant government has used to increase its power at our expense. The We the People Foundation, over years of activism, has established a record of formal Petitions for Redress of Grievances for each of these 15 violations, and our employees in all branches of government have refused to respond to any of them. Therefore three delegates from each of 48 states-- Americans from all walks of life--met together to created a record of these violations, and moving beyond a time of petition, have issued instructions for how to redress the violations to all branches of government, federal and state. In case those instructions are not followed, and in case our servant government mistakes our intention, we have also made recomendations to the People of the United States, in their several sovereign States, for peaceful civic action to hold government accountable to the Constitution.

These civic actions can be effective if a mass movement of between 2.5% and 5% of the population engages in them together, in order to hold the government accountable. This has been the case in every place and time where the People have held their governments accountable.

If you desire liberty for yourselves and your children; and if you have been concerned about the concentration of power into the hands of venal politicians, who "have erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our peopel and eat out their substance" (Declaration of Independence), then go to the website on the widget at the top of this blog, read the Articles of Freedom and sign the pledge to take action together. And if you are a patriot--prove it by reading the Plan of Action for April 19th, 2010. And spread the word. Do your part to restore Liberty and Constitutional governance. Then you can look your children in the eye when they ask you what you did to protect their inheritance of Liberty.