Tag Archives: bill of rights

An Oppressive Dictatorship With Cheap Salad and No Hypocrisy

Note: The title and topic of this blog post are tongue-in-cheek. I am aware that a government that always “knows what’s best” naturally drifts far away from what actually is best.

I was watching a technical talk on the topic of computational geometry on YouTube and a comment popped up that in one sentence managed to include both a racist and a homophobic slur. This made me wish that I could somehow ban the ability of human beings to do write such comments (just because they are protected by the cover of anonymity). Of course, you couldn’t enforce anything like that, unless…

So I wondered what kind of things I’d love to see a dictatorial government implement. Here are some random ideas that would either benefit me directly or indirectly ūüėČ

  • YouTube comments that contain racist or homophobic slurs would be punished by forcing that person to recite the same comment in-person to a group of people against which the comment was made. The group will then have 30 minutes to do with the commenter what they wish.
  • Salads would be heavily subsidized. So that a salad will always be cheaper than a burger. (Of course, then, the fast food lobby would convince Congress that a burger is actually a salad because it sometimes has lettuce).
  • Every citizen is required to prove on a yearly basis that they have the minimum civics knowledge required of most immigrants seeking citizenship. Questions like “What are the main branches of our government?”, “What is the Bill of Rights?”, “Who is the chief justice of the Supreme Court?”, “What are the rights guaranteed by the first amendment to the constitution?”, etc.
  • Every politician would be required to pass a much more stringent civics test. Basically you should be knowledgeable in 20th century international history, political science, law, and the basics of all major scientific disciplines (biology, physics, chemistry, etc).
  • Hypocrisy¬†in hateful speech (e.g. homosexuals speaking out against gay marriage) should be punished with some kind of humiliation on Twitter.
  • Since the Olympics are going on, my kind of dictatorial government would actually fund the athletes training hard for years to represent their nation in the myriad of Olympics sports that do not provide them with a natural source of income.

On a serious note, while I believe that government (aka the people) can do a lot of good, I also tend to agree with Thomas Jefferson that “I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive.”

The Palin Guide to the Founding Documents for Tea Party Candidates

If you’re running as a tea party candidate, you’re most likely selling yourself as someone who values the¬†constitution¬†and by extension the historical foundation of our government. The problem with doing that is you actually have to learn some history. Here are some basic facts (off the top of my head) about the key documents that defined the founding of our great nation:

  • Declaration of Independence (1776) – Jefferson wrote it. It’s short and full of zingers like the “all men are created equal”. Of course, Jefferson owned over 100 slaves. He probably should have added “but some are more equal than others” to that opening line.
  • Federalist Papers (1787) – These are brilliant essays by three brilliant dudes: Madison ($5000 bill), Hamilton ($10), and someone else who doesn’t have his face on any currency and thus doesn’t matter. These 85 articles form a basis on which the Constitution can be interpreted. They also had a value at the time of convincing folks to ratify.
  • Constitution (1787-89) – A Twitter version of the Federalist papers that serves as the “supreme law” of the land. It starts with “We the People” and was used recently to remind us that corporations are people too. In other words, it’s a supremely powerful document that can be supremely misinterpreted to arrive at any conclusion whatsoever.
  • Bill of Rights (1791) – First ten¬†amendments¬†to the constitution. Many of these are taken for granted today as obvious and necessary truths of a just society, but are remarkably radical examples of moral soundness and idealism for the time.