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The Living Room / Our First Flag
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on May 25, 2019, 11:45:36 AM »
 Ask anyone, "Who created our first flag?" and chances are, you'll get the answer, "Betsy Ross." Well, if you missed Dr. Henry Leissing's lecture, here's a condensed version of what you missed.

  The year was 1775 and our country was just about to face their greatest battle on American soil; it was the beginning of the American Revolution. At that time the British were occupying Boston, and problems in the colonies were rising. George Washington wanted to intercept incoming British ships with supplies, but the popular vote in Philadelphia disagreed with anything which might upset the king, especially after the Boston Tea Party. Washington decided to take it upon himself to commission 6 Privately owned schooners and start his own navy. It was rumored to be at his own expense. It was to be called "Washington's Secret Navy" and all vessels would fly "An Appeal to Heaven"  flags. Also known as the "Washington’s cruiser flag", it had a white background, with an evergreen tree in the middle, and the words “An Appeal to Heaven" stitched across the top.

   Just a few months after the first voyage, a British Brigantine named the "Nancy" was captured by one of our schooners, the "Lee". On board were muskets, flint, gun powder, and other supplies in abundance. The prize was so great that it was said our country would have taken well over a year to produce. Not only was this the greatest capture of the entire Revolution, it also inspired all the founding fathers and the birth of our countries United States Navy as we know it today. The original schooners bearing the "Appeal to Heaven" flags continued capturing British ships and performing special services for the remainder of the war as our new Navy was being formed.

  In April 1776, The state of Massachusetts adopted this flag for its own navy. It's resolution for operations... "Resolved, that the uniform of the officers be green and white, and that the colors be a white flag, with a green pine tree, and the inscription, 'An Appeal to Heaven.'" The Massachusetts Navy sailed 25 ships during the war to defend the coast from the British and then eventually absorbed into the United States Navy.

But why a pine tree? What's the significance of this flag?  Well, as Paul Harvey used to say Here's "The rest of the story..."

    The Pine Tree, also known as the "Tree of Peace" has been sacred by the Iroquois Indians for over a 1000 years in America. At a very troubling time in their history, a peacemaker united 6 great tribes from the Great Lake areas and established unity... This great treaty was symbolized by burying their weapons under a pine tree (this is where the phrase to, "bury the hatchet" comes from) and this tree was to be guarded by a bald eagle at its peak clutching 6 arrows, representing the six tribes....

   Our founding fathers and early settlers were very much influenced by the Iroquois Indians. These peoples comprise the oldest living participatory democracy on earth.  Their story, and governance is truly based on the consent of the governed. The original United States representative democracy, fashioned by such central authors as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, drew much inspiration from this confederacy of nations.

   Around the time of the signing of The Declaration, The Iroquois attended a Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia. This meeting was one of the many were the Indians would inspire our founders to unite with them in their ways of living, laws, and style of government. It was just after this that the "Tree of Peace" became known as our new "Liberty Tree" and it would show itself on flags of all kinds, especially those in the fight for our freedom.

   In addition, wood was so indispensable to us for home and ship building, were both so vitally important. We had pine trees with trunks up to 6 feet in diameter, and as tall as 230 feet. This wood was old growth, rumored to be the best in the world at the time, especially for the tall masts on ships. In the mid 1700's the king of England recognized this value and wanted them for his own Royal Navy. He would mark trees in America and they were not to be touched even if on your own property.  Known as the "Broad Arrow Act",  this was one more action which infuriated the colonists, and strengthened the pine tree's symbolism in America.

  The phrase “An Appeal to Heaven “was created by John Locke from England in the mid 1600’s.  Locke was one of the great philosophers of his time.  He, like other English Philosophers, were also influenced by the Iroquois in America. "An Appeal to Heaven" comes from his studies on “Natural Laws", a system of right or justice common to all humankind and derived from nature rather than from the rules of society, and the only judge is that of our creator. It is in these laws where our "unalienable rights" come from and the foundation on which this country was formed. The phrase "An Appeal to Heaven" connotes that when all resources and justices on earth are exhausted, that only "An Appeal to Heaven" remains. And so is the example of our country when our rights were taken away by the tyrannical acts of King George that we as nation, after countless attempts to resolve, Appealed to Heaven as our final judge before breaking ties with the crown.

   And lastly, our very own "Declaration of Indepedence"....One of our most prized document, is Americas' "Appeal to Heaven" publicly declared. Thomas Jefferson, who wrote the declaration was for a long time highly influenced by John Locke's work, and if you read The Declaration of Independence (especially the last paragraph) you can see it is by all means the true definition of An Appeal to Heaven in its format.
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Politics In General / Re: The Electoral College: Should it be abolished?
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on December 07, 2016, 09:51:51 PM »
And here are a few more facts about why we have (and need to keep) the electoral college.

There are 3,141 counties in the United States. Trump won 3,084 of them, and Clinton won only 57.




There are 62 counties in the state of New York. Trump won 46 of them, and Clinton won only 16.


Clinton won the national popular vote by approx. 1.5 million votes.


In the 5 counties that encompass NYC, (Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Richmond & Queens) Clinton won 4 of them- Trump won Richmond.  With only 4 of those 5 counties, Clinton received well over 2 million more votes than Trump. Therefore, these 5 counties alone, more than accounted for Clinton winning the national popular vote of the entire country.


These 5 counties comprise 319 square miles. The United States is comprised of 3,797,000 square miles.


When you have a country that encompasses almost 4 million square miles of territory, it is ludicrous to even suggest that the votes of those who inhabit a mere 319 square miles should dictate the outcome of a national election.
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Politics In General / Re: Now hiring!
« Last post by Janet Nunziato on November 23, 2016, 09:32:39 PM »

                                                            Trump!


                Make America GREAT Again!
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Politics In General / Re: The Electoral College: Should it be abolished?
« Last post by Janet Nunziato on November 23, 2016, 09:23:53 PM »
Very well stated, Jim.  You've explained the purpose and effect of the  Electoral Collage very precisely.  I hope those who read this and participate in this poll will, also, grasp the importance of the EC as an integral part of our electoral process.
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Politics In General / The Electoral College: Should it be abolished?
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on November 23, 2016, 08:19:07 PM »
In the 2016 presidential election, the Democratic nominee received a majority of the popular vote, but lost the election to the Republican candidate, because of the Electoral College. The same thing happened in the 2000 Presidential election. This is the 5th time it has happened in the nation's 56 Presidential elections. How can the Electoral College allow this to happen? Shouldn't it go without a second thought that whomever wins the popular vote should win the Presidency?  Why do we have this Electoral Collage, who started it, and why is it set up the way it is?

A lot of people mistakenly believe that the United States is a democracy. It isn't. It is a Constitutional, Representative Republic. Our Founding Fathers did everything in their power to ensure we were NOT a democracy. In a pure democracy, simple majority (51%) rules.  That means 51% control the other 49%. In a republic, LAWS rule, not majority.

I suspect one would be hard pressed to find anyone who would not agree that every legitimate vote cast should count. With that concept in mind, let's look at a few numbers. I will use estimated numbers, based on various websites. They are not exact, but will serve to illustrate the concept.

According to estimates on various websites, total eligible voters in the 2016 Presidential election was somewhere around 231,556,622. Voter turnout is estimated to be around 58.4%, or somewhere around 135,228,196. If we divide the number of votes cast by two, 67,614,098 would equal 50%. Anything more than that would be the majority of the popular vote, and would elect the president. Since there were more than just two candidates in the race for President, it would be very possible for no one candidate to receive more than half of the cast votes, so whomever receives the most votes, would be considered to have received the majority of all cast votes.

If the Nov 8th. Presidential election was one, large, national election, then the number of popular votes could very easily be accumulated by winning only the four most populated states, California, Texas, New York, and Florida. The total number of voters in just those four states alone, total around 100,578,929. But remember the concept of, "every vote should count?" If a candidate only needed to win four or five of the most populated states, how much of a voice would the lesser populated states have in the overall election? They would be rendered totally insignificant.

The Presidential election, is, in fact, fifty-one completely separate, and totally independent elections. There is a "Presidential election" in each of the fifty states, plus one more in the District of Columbia. Simple majority rules in each of those individual elections, and whichever candidate wins each state election, dictates how the ELECTORS in that state must vote.  The people do not directly elect the President of the United States. They never have, and hopefully, never will. Each state receives a number of ELECTORS determined by the total number of representatives it has in both houses of Congress. For example, if a state has 5 representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives, and 2 senators in the U.S. Senate, that state will carry 7 electoral votes in the Electoral College. With our current fifty states, there are a total of 538 electoral votes. When the Electoral College convenes, it takes a simple majority, (269 + 1 = 270 electoral votes) to win the Presidency. In order to win enough electoral votes to become President, a candidate must win a majority of the STATES. Remember the concept of every vote counting? If a simple majority win of the popular votes in the 4 most populated states were all that were needed to elect the President, then all the remaining votes in the remaining 46 states would be rendered insignificant.

This system of electing the President was established by our Founding Fathers, in our U.S. Constitution. It has once again come under scrutiny, by those who say it should be abolished. To do so would require a Constitutional amendment.

What do you think?

(Federalist Paper 68 and Anti-Federalist Paper 68 both deal with how we elect the President.) 




This is the Electoral College map for the 2016 Presidential election. The Democratic nominee may have won more popular votes in many fewer states, but note how many more STATES the Republican candidate won! If the popular vote directly elected the President, all of the votes in those smaller, less populated states would have been rendered irrelevant.




Now look at the all of the states by COUNTIES won by each candidate. If the popular vote alone (from just the most populated COUNTIES) directly elected the President, note how many MORE votes from the less populated counties would be rendered irrelevant.



The Electoral College ensures that in order to win the presidency, the winning candidate must win a majority of the STATES, not the popular vote in just the most populated counties and cities.
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Current Events / Re: Affordable Care Act
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on November 20, 2016, 06:01:08 PM »
Donald Trump is now "President Elect" Donald Trump. I have to admit, it was a pleasant surprise to me. As much as I wanted it, I never thought it would ever happen. Prayer does work.

This thread is about the "Affordable" Care Act, or more commonly known as "obamacare." One of Trump's major campaign promises was to repeal and replace it as soon as he took office. I am already hearing great pressure from the left, and even a bit from the right, to just "modify" it. I say, "NO!!!"

Every word of it must be repealed, and here's why.

1. It's unconstitutional. Period. I know there are those who will claim that it has already been challenged, and the Supreme Court has ruled it constitutional. Well, not exactly. The Supreme Court ruled that under the "commerce clause," it is unconstitutional, because the Federal Government cannot create commerce, it can only control that which already exists. Forcing someone to purchase something they may not wish to purchase creates commerce, and that is unconstitutional. The Federal Government has no authority to force anyone to purchase anything, period.

2. It is unconstitutional because the Supreme Court had no authority to change the word "penalty" in the law to "tax." They ruled that since Congress, (specifically the House of Representatives) does have the power to "lay and collect taxes," if the "penalty" was changed to a "tax," then the law would be "constitutional."  Will someone please show me where in the Constitution, the Supreme Court is granted the authority to change the wording of any law upon which a case is being argued before them? We have a Legislative branch of our Federal Government which writes bills, which the Executive Branch then signs into law. It was totally unconstitutional for the Supreme Court to CHANGE the wording of the law so the penalty became a tax. And once more, can someone please show me in the Constitution where the Federal Government can tax you for NOT purchasing something? ANYTHING??? 

Here is an excerpt from the certified reconciliation text which was signed into law.
PUBLIC LAW 111–152—MAR. 30, 2010 124 STAT. 1067

          ‘‘(i) the amount of the covered entity’s fee under this section for the calendar year the Secretary determines should have been paid in the absence of any such understatement, over ‘‘(ii) the amount of such fee the Secretary determined based on such understatement.

          ‘‘(B) UNDERSTATEMENT.—For purposes of this paragraph, an understatement of a covered entity’s net premiums written with respect to health insurance for any United States health risk for any calendar year is the difference between the amount of such net premiums written as reported on the return filed by the covered entity under paragraph (1) and the amount of such net premiums written that should have been reported on such return.

          ‘‘(C) TREATMENT OF PENALTY.—The penalty imposed under subparagraph (A) shall be subject to the provisions of subtitle F of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 that apply to assessable penalties imposed under chapter 68 of such Code.

Notice that the bill, as it was written, reconciled by both chambers of Congress, and signed into LAW, it was a PENALTY!

3. It is unconstitutional because we have a Legislative Branch which WRITES bills, which the Executive Branch then signs into law. The Legislative Branch writes the laws, and the Executive makes sure they are enforced. The Executive branch is not supposed to WRITE laws. The "Affordable" Care Act was (unconstitutionally) written in such a way that the Executive Branch makes up or writes the law as it goes along, and as it sees fit.  How? Through the creation of a "Secretary." And who appoints, and to whom does this "Secretary" report? Why, the head of the Executive branch.

Look in either or both the original certified text, and / or in the certified reconciliation text in the links above, (and in the highlighted excerpt above) and tell me how many times you find references to the "Secretary":

          ...(as defined by the Secretary)...
          ...specified by the Secretary...
          ...until the Secretary implements...
          ...If the Secretary determines...
          ...and such other terms as the Secretary determines...
          ...the Secretary may develop and impose appropriate penalties for non-compliance with such requirements.

        (Whoa! There's that PENALTY!)
         ...the Secretary may provide for exceptions...
         ...such percentage shall be adjusted to the extent the Secretary determines...


Have I made my point? Who is this Secretary? Does anyone know?

Is anyone aware that the "Affordable" Care Act also took over regulation of Student loans? It's right there in the table of contents:
          Sec. 5201. Federally supported student loan funds.
Where in the Constitution is the Federal Government authorized to take control of Student loans?

So, these are only a few reasons why every word of the ACA must be repealed and replaced with more sensible health care laws. Before obamacare, we had the best health care in the world. Was it perfect? No. Did it need some tweaking and a few adjustments? Absolutely. But we didn't need to scrap the entire system and replace it with the abomination we have. Which, by the way, was forced upon us without one single republican vote in Congress. This is completely the work of the democrats.

So, what do we replace it with? I've already heard the fear stories from the left that we will go back to being enslaved by unregulated insurance companies, and preexisting condition exclusions or unaffordable premiums. I'm not a legislator, but with just a teeny smidgen of common sense, I think a law could be written which would establish that health care would be a personal contract between an individual and his insurance provider. No government involvement is needed, except to establish the "playing field." All insurance companies would be able and encouraged to operate across state lines, and individuals would be free to search out the best deal from any insurance company. Competition would be the drive the prices, and individuals would be able to negotiate whatever deals they can. Since it would be a private contract with the insurance company, it would not matter where you worked or lived, and you would be free to take your health care with you wherever you moved or worked. As a bargaining chip, your employer may elect to pay your premiums as a benefit of employment. If you have a preexisting condition, or develop a serious condition, no insurance company would be able to gouge you with unaffordable premiums, deny (drop) coverage to you, or raise your deductible to unreasonable limits, but like auto insurance companies, if you become an unsafe driver, they should be allowed to put you into a "higher risk" category, and charge you a SLIGHTLY higher premium. They would NOT be able to gouge with unreasonable premiums, or keep raising premiums on a time schedule. If you have good health, you should have lower premiums. No one would be forced to purchase health care insurance if they didn't want it. That's a gamble you take, and if you choose to not purchase health care insurance, and some day you need it, you're on your own. You rolled the dice, and you take full responsibility for your own actions (or NON-actions). If you were poor and couldn't afford it, but needed it, well, that would have to be worked out. But, like I said, I'm not a legislator, and these are just a few of my ideas. I believe that with a little common sense, things can be worked out that will benefit all, with the least amount of government control and intervention.

If you are a veteran and need to see a doctor, if you can't get taken care of by the VA, you should be able to go to any doctor, and send the bill to the government. Our vets deserve no less.

So, these are a few of my thoughts on repealing obamacare. There are a lot of hidden nuggets that were "baked into the cake," which we don't even know about, but they are still the law. That's why I feel that EVERY WORD of it must be repealed.

 
   
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Politics In General / Re: Now hiring!
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on November 09, 2016, 01:35:49 PM »


Hired!!!

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Politics In General / Now hiring!
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on November 01, 2016, 02:57:04 PM »
The United States Of America is currently taking job applications for position of President!

There are four job applicants, but only two of them have any chance of actually being selected for the job.

Donald Trump, in his lifetime, has created tens of thousands of jobs, and employed tens of thousands of people. How does a person get to work for Donald Trump? They have to apply for, and be interviewed by either Donald, his Board of Directors, or perhaps he created a Human Resources Department to do the hiring. Then the job applicant has to convince those who make the decision, that he is qualified to execute the requirements of the job. After hearing from all the available job applicants, a selection is made, and one of the applicants is hired. (We all know who does the firing, don't we?  "You're Fired!!!")

Perhaps, for probably the first time in his life, Donald Trump is applying for a job from someone else.  To whom is he applying? What are the first three words of the Constitution? "We The People!" We The People get to make the final decision of who gets "hired" for the job. We will make our final decision and choice by November 8th.

So, let's put aside all the mud slinging and personal character assassination, (from both sides) and focus on the important issues we should keep in mind when evaluating the resumes of the two job applicants.
  • Which of the two job applicants will nominate justices to the Supreme Court who will uphold and support the Constitution?
  • Which of the two job applicants will secure our borders?
  • Which of the two job applicants will end the Syrian refugee program and keep radical Islam terrorists OUT of our country?
  • Which of the two job applicants will end "Common Core" and return education back to the States?
  • Which of the two job applicants will put our coal miners back to work?
  • Which of the two job applicants will renegotiate better trade deals with other countries?
  • Which of the two job applicants will rebuild our military?
  • Which of the two job applicants will secure and preserve our Second Amendment?
  • Which of the two job applicants will repeal and replace obamacare?
  • Which of the two job applicants will do a better job of stimulating our economy?
  • Which of the two job applicants will take care of our veterans?
  • Which of the two job applicants will support our Law Enforcement Officers?
Do I need to continue? To all the "Never Trumpers" out there, I ask, how about "Never hillary"? I ask that you put aside all the reasons you don't "like" Trump's personality, or whatever reason you don't "like" him, and just focus the issues that will directly affect the direction of our country. It would be one thing if we could separate ourselves from the liberals, and let them do their thing, and we conservatives could do ours. Sadly, it doesn't work that way. We're all in the same boat, and if it sinks, we all go down together. We have to do whatever we can to "Save the Ship!"

How many of you have seen Hailey's Comet? It only comes around once every 75 or 76 years, and if you miss it, too bad. You will most likely never get to see it again in your lifetime. Donald Trump and his offer to "Make America Great Again'" is like Hailey's Comet to America. It will only come around once in our lifetime, and if we don't take advantage of it this time around, we'll not likely see another chance within our lifetimes. Let's not blow it!

John Adams said, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." I believe we are a silent majority, who are moral and religious. It is time for the silent majority to speak up and scream from the rooftops (with our ballots) and make our voices heard! It is time to awaken the sleeping giant! We need to raise the roofs off of the voting booths through our ballots! We need to create vibrations at the ballot box that will show up on the Richter scale! 

We each need to make our own personal decisions, and overwhelmingly hire the job applicant whom we believe can (1)receive enough support to actually be hired for the job, so they can (2)do their best to secure and protect America's best interests. Use your own judgement to evaluate all of the job applicants, make your decision, and ensure that your voice is heard by voicing it through your ballot by November 8th!

God Bless America!!!

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Politics In General / Can a private citizen make demands on the FBI?
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on October 30, 2016, 10:34:00 AM »
10 days before election day, the FBI announced that they are reopening the investigation concerning the democratic party nominee, Hillary Clinton.

At this point both party candidates are PRIVATE CITIZENS. Neither holds any current government position. How then, does the democratic party nominee DEMAND that the FBI release everything they have in this investigation? Since when does a PRIVATE CITIZEN demand anything from the FBI? Talk about "unprecedented!"

They want "full disclosure and transparency," they say.  If they want full disclosure and transparency, how about disclosing the real content of the conversation between the democratic party candidate's husband and the Attorney General's private meeting on her airplane on the tarmac? Do they actually expect the American people to really believe that they only talked about their "grandchildren?"  Is there anyone who actually believes that? How stupid do they actually believe we, the American people are?

Not having access to what the FBI now has, is it reasonable to assume that the very fact that they re-opened the investigation 10 days before election day suggests that they might have some very important information?

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Politics In General / Re: Presidential Election
« Last post by Jim Nunziato on October 21, 2016, 06:58:40 PM »
I realize that this is an old thread, but the stakes are just as high, and the point is even more relevant than when I made the original post.

It's now down to Hillary or Trump. I cannot understand how there can still be "undecided" voters, with less than three weeks left until election day. These two candidates are S-O-O-O-O far apart, I find it mind-boggling that anyone hasn't "made up their mind" yet. Come ON!!! Either you want someone who is for bigger government, higher taxes, liberal Supreme Court nominees, open borders, etc. etc. etc. , or not!

And for you "Never Trumpers," still out there, please don't try to justify yourself by "sitting this one out." One of these two candidates will become the next president of the United States. That's a fact, and like it or not, your vote can help to steer it either way. Not voting for Trump allows a vote for Hillary to go UN-neturalized. If you can't bear the thought of Hillary as president,  and you refuse to vote for Trump, remember that the only way Hillary will NOT be electled, is for someone else to get MORE votes than her. Trump is the ONLY ONE who can do that, but only with the support of everyone who claims to be a conservative. Remember, obama won his second term with a half million vote margin. The only reason he was able to accomplish that, was because FOUR MILLION republicans "couldn't bring themselves to vote for Romney." Nice going!  Good job!

So, if you're still undecided, or can't bring yourself to vote for Trump, let me ask you a few questions:

Of the two candidates, which one do you think will be most likely to:

1. - Nominate justices to the Supreme Court who will be more likely to honor the CONSTITUTION and our Laws over the "feelings" of the people?

2. - Secure our borders?

3. - Preserve our 2nd amendment?

4. - Improve our economy?

5. - Fight Radical Islamic Terrorism?

...and the list goes on.


To you "never Trumpers," Remember, we're not hiring a pastor, youth minister, or favorite uncle. We're electing a president who will do what's best to turn our country around from the destructive direction which Hillary wants to continue.  I ask you to get over yourself and vote for who you honestly believe can actually get elected, and do the best job for our country!!! 
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