Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Government May Not Muzzle Its Critics

Let alone with its employers' money. Seems self-evident, doesn't it? One might even be forgiven for presuming that the 1st Amendment and Right-to-Know prohibited it. Even by "mutual agreement" -- because the taxpayers don't have a seat at the settlement table.

Government can't hide its (effectively admitted) transgressions. Your servants shouldn't ever be able to unjustly attempt to destroy your life, and then, as a condition of ceasing and desisting its reckless lawlessness, compel your silence on the matter. It must not have the option of escaping public accountability for its actions. Ever.


You are the employer. You are the taxpayer. However many "bags of money" there are, you're on the hook for the damage that ostensibly warranted their distribution. You were obliged to fill them. You have a duty to understand fully what your servants are perpetrating in your name and on your dime. You are the only sure remedy to more bags getting distributed in the future. You have every right to know the particulars empirically conceded with the settlement by your servants. Government doesn't get to buy silence regarding its abuses with (your) money. A guaranteed silence that only encourages more abuse -- of you as taxpayer, and of you as potential target. "More difficult settlements" is a good thing if it encourages government not to put itself in that position in the first place.

And I'm fairly confident actionable slander and libel statutes will survive, so...

HB154, "prohibiting non-disparagement clauses in settlement agreements involving a governmental unit", before the Senate Judiciary Committee, 5/14/2019, is such a stipulation. And evidently the NHDoJ agrees. Sunlight is the best disinfectant...

A Right to Your Own Body -- And a Right to Defend that Right

Neither guns nor weed are within any delegated 'prohibition' purview of any government legitimately authorized by this US Constitution. It's that simple.

With hoplophobic hysteria (among other problems already, to be sure) having gleefully descended on the freshly Democratically-controlled NH legislature this term, the several state RKBA groups have been working overtime endeavoring to get their constituents out to relevant committee hearings and contacting their ostensible "representatives". Thus, I've expected that the public hearings for these bills would be well-enough attended and sufficiently reported that my own camera wasn't needed -- indeed, unnecessarily taking an SRO spot from someone else, who just might provide compelling testimony, too.

Plus there are the obscene parking problems in the State House's vicinity lately, even without high turnout, what with construction and the booted meters and garage spaces reserved for the Privileged Class as far as the eye can see. It shouldn't be too easy to instruct your servant government, after all...

But this day, 5/14/2019, is the typically far less well-attended Senate Judiciary Committee Executive Session to hash out and arrive at said committee's official mob-rule/damn-our-constricting-lawfully-delegated-authority recommendations to the full body on, among others, 4 of those gun bills (so there's still time to contact your Senator), all beginning at about the 9:20 mark:

HB109, "requiring background checks for commercial firearms sales", ("Ought To Pass" 3-2),
HB514, "imposing a waiting period between the purchase and delivery of a firearm", (OTP/As Amended 3-2),
HB564, "(New Title) relative to possession of firearms on school property", (OTP/A 3-2),
HB696, "establishing a protective order for vulnerable adults" (here are overviews on this one), (OTP/A 3-2).

So much head-smackingly self-assured cluelessness that cries out for addressing here, certainly -- not that it hasn't been addressed before, ad nauseam, to no effect. But I'll confine myself to arguably the most egregious: the empirically false, addle-pated conviction, at base, that criminals obey laws. And further that if the children can be assured that if the rights of (only, since they're the only ones who will comply, duh) law-abiding citizens may be violated (without Constitutional authority, needless to say), then the children will rest easy that they are somehow now made safer. That the children would buy that speaks mostly to their government-school education, seems to me. The "gun-free" school bill stops everyone but the individual it (says it) wants to stop -- and, indeed, assures him publicly of that fact. What could possibly go wrong...?

And if you haven't stopped the criminal -- and again, unauthorized statutes stopping the law-abiding by definition won't stop him -- then "feeling safe" is, at best, entirely illusory, is nothing at all but a potentially more deadly "false sense of security", because you've purged the killing zone of any effective defense against those whom your statute won't stop. The school shooter is still coming. Seriously, have you not been following the news? All you've accomplished is to reassure him that his victims will be unable to defend themselves. The belief that an individual who would shoot up a school will still heed your prohibition on peaceful carry is flat-out delusional.

But first, they 'Exec' HB399, "relative to annulment of arrests or convictions for possession of a certain quantity of marijuana" at about :40 (OTP/A 3-2) and HB481, "relative to the legalization and regulation of cannabis and making appropriations therefor" at about 6:45, ("re-refer to committee" 5-0 -- merely returning toward Constitutional constraints should get more study...!), legislative hearings for which may be viewed here and here (House) and here (Senate).

Consider. Both of these topics, guns and weed -- each of them (one explicitly, even) undelegated "prohibitions", functionally -- concern what, in a free society (hell, even in this one), should be jealously-guarded fundamentally-protected civil liberties: unilateral control of your own body, and the ability to effectively defend that right from those who, whether with or without a fancy hat, would presume to violate it.

How can the Constitution-averse Duopoly -- that assures you that it is government, and will be respected, even if ultimately it has to kill you to "earn" it (because make NO mistake, every statute is backed by a gun) -- so easily and recalcitrantly trade sides on them?

Does that seem right to you...?


Thursday, May 9, 2019

If Wishes Were Horses, We'd All Be Eatin' Steak!

And at unsustainably low mandated prices, too! And free ponies for everyone! Whee...! Ahh, fiat utopia. Sadly, however, TANSTAAFL intervenes. Everybody likes money -- you like money, too...?! Nobody appears to have any suggestions on where the funding for the bureaucrat-added costs of doing business is supposed to come from, though. Details, details... They do seem to understand well enough that their personal balance sheets need to add up. They're just not willing to concede the same realities for others. All your contract are belong to us; Love, the Central Planners...

Herewith, HB186, "establishing a state minimum wage and providing for adjustments to the minimum wage", before the NH Senate Commerce Committee, 5/9/2019. The sponsor easily acknowledges that the competitive market for goods and services in NH has already addressed this bill's intent: very few workers would benefit from its economic interventions. Because competition for good labor (it's why that Chatham ice cream shop calculates -- along with all of the other of their business considerations of which you know nothing, Senator Cavanaugh -- it's in its financial interest to pay such good wages).

So why is this necessary? Like the French politician Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin, it seems, our rulers observe, "There go my people. I must find out where they are going so I can lead them."

But if it is necessary -- and there are no nettlesomely negative economic consequences to meddling in the market's pricing signals, because money evidently does grow on trees -- to overrule markets (which have more data than you do) and commandeer other people's contracts because "We Know Better", then why stop at $12? Why not, say, $50? Or $100? Surely that would be even better!

No, because even supporters, one can only surmise, can somehow grasp there would be problems -- of their own creation, and therefore their responsibility -- even if they can't articulate them. And the arguments against $50 are identical to the arguments against $12. Or any, for that matter.

Most simply, they're not your contracts, and you have a "knowledge problem". Show some humility. "Wishing" a business can afford to pay what you want it to pay -- and that the job being done economically supports paying that wage -- doesn't make it so. If you believe it can be paid sustainably, then start a competing business and you will instantly have your pick of the best labor. And like Bernie Sanders, you'll profit like a true capitalist.

Here's an alternative to force-monopoly coercion based in economic ignorance: Private voluntary contracts, and free-market pressure via natural pricing signals and non-government-undermined competition. Yes, even for labor. All will be well...

Some more context first...



Now the hearing...

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Go East, Young Man

HB567, "relative to using the Atlantic Time Zone in NH", confronts the NH Senate's Executive Departments and Administration Committee, 5/8/2019. Hey, it's where we're laboriously headed already anyway, right? Besides, adjust your activities to the solar cycle, instead of thinking you're performing miracles by moving clock hands around. Ya don't actually create another hour of daylight, y'know...

The Massachusetts 'Time Zone Commission Report' to which prime sponsor Rep. Yokela referred can be found here (or as pdf). But let's start here. Nobody likes it. So why are we still doing it...?

And now the hearing...