The 13th Amendment, Approved 150 Years Ago:

"Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."

The 13th amendment, which formally abolished slavery in the United States, passed the Senate on April 8, 1864, and the House on January 31, 1865. On February 1, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln approved the Joint Resolution of Congress submitting the proposed amendment to the state legislatures. It would be ratified by the necessary number of states on December 6, 1865.

In 1863 President Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation declaring “all persons held as slaves within any State, or designated part of a State, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free.” Nonetheless, the Emancipation Proclamation did not end slavery in the nation. Lincoln recognized that the Emancipation Proclamation would have to be followed by a constitutional amendment in order to guarantee the abolishment of slavery.

The 13th amendment was passed at the end of the Civil War before the Southern states had been restored to the Union and should have easily passed the Congress. Although the Senate passed it in April 1864, the House did not. At that point, Lincoln took an active role to ensure passage through congress. He insisted that passage of the 13th amendment be added to the Republican Party platform for the upcoming Presidential elections. His efforts met with success when the House passed the bill in January 1865 with a vote of 119–56.  (via OurDocuments )

The story of the creation of the 13th Amendment is featured in “The Meaning and Making of Emancipation,” a free eBook created by the National Archives. You can read it on your iPad, iPhone, Nook, or other electronic device.

"I hate gays"

Oh really?  Guess you would be okay with the Nazis winning the war and don’t even think about using your computer/smartphone. 

This man, Alan Turing, made immense contributions and helped improve and advance technology, not just turning the tide of the war. Without him YOU wouldn’t be able to blog. He played a key role in breaking the Enigma, which was the German secret code. People saw Enigma as impossible to break- it was that complex. However the code met its match when Alan Turing came along, because Alan Turing cracked Enigmaand he happened to be gay. 

Alan (and his team) had broken the “unbreakable” Enigma. His machine that he built to break the code became known as “Turing Machines”, the foundation for the modern computer.  If he didn’t break the code D-DAY would have been impossible, no way the Allies could’ve pulled off D-DAY if the Enigma wasn’t broken. 

So think again when you say something rude about the LGBT+ community. 

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Stuff They Don’t Want You To Know - Project Blue Beam

For decades conspiracy theorists have accused the government of hiding evidence of aliens or imminent world disasters, but could the governments of the world actually be planning to fake an apocalypse? Tune in to learn more about Project Blue Beam.

I’m not red or blue. I’m purple. I’m fucking purple with streaks of black. Logical, innovative…and I have a very open mind. Spiritual but not taken by religion. I hope for a smooth world but I can’t help pray for anarchy. Purple. Purple with some black.
—  Creedance Middleton
A bill introduced into the Texas House this week would permit teachers to use deadly force against students to protect themselves or others.

A bill introduced into the Texas House this week would permit teachers to use deadly force against students to protect themselves or others. The law would also allow teachers to use deadly force to defend school property. The measure, euphemistically called “The Teacher’s Protection Act,” was introduced by Republican Representative Dan Flynn. Flynn represents a mostly rural East Texas District that includes Hunt, Hopkins and Van Zandt counties. On his home page, he boasts about the conservative nature of his District as follows:

Flynn’s bill is the “Stand Your Ground” mentality gone mad. Lawmakers with deep red constituencies may feel compelled to write legislation that the NRA will applaud, but it hardly makes for sound, rational public policy. Allowing teachers to execute students simply to protect school property shows how absurd the gun right’s movement has become.
An educator is justified in using force or deadly force on school property, on a school bus, or at a school-sponsored event in defense of property of the school that employs the educator if, under the circumstances as the educator reasonably believes them to be, the educator would be justified under Section 9.43, Penal Code, in using force or deadly force, as applicable, in defense of property of the school that employs the educator.
1) the actor reasonably believes the unlawful interference constitutes attempted or consummated theft of or criminal mischief to the tangible, movable property: or
2) the actor reasonably believes that:
(A) the third person has requested his protection of the land or property;
(B) he has a legal duty to protect the third person’s land or property; or
(C) the third person whose land or property he uses force or deadly force to protect is the actor’s spouse, parent, or child, resides with the actor, or is under the actor’s care.
The rural district, home to 174,000 proud Texans, values conservative principles and family values, and voted for Governor Romney over President Obama in the 2012 Presidential election by a 4-1 margin.
The most extreme portion of the bill is section 38A.003 that permits a teacher to kill in defense of school property. It reads:
Section 9.43 of the Texas Penal Code reads:
9.43. PROTECTION OF THIRD PERSON’S PROPERTY. A person is justified in using force or deadly force against another to protect land or tangible, movable property of a third person if, under the circumstances as he reasonably believes them to be, the actor would be justified under section 9.41 or 9.42 in using force or deadly force to protect his own land or property and:
This proposed Texas bill would essentially give school teachers a license to kill students who were damaging school property. Students should not vandalize school property, but is it prudent to give teachers the right to impose the death penalty on suspected juvenile delinquents? The Texas state legislature may think the way to stop Middle School kids from spray painting the outside of the school building is to let teachers shoot a few of them, but really there are more sensible ways to address school vandalism. The Texas House should reject this bill in its entirety. 

This terrifies me! Teachers are looked at as examples and models for how to behave. Granted, I know we are human and do mess up, but I just cannot wrap my head around the notion that by allowing teachers to have guns in school would prevent students from using guns in school. If anything I think it would promote the idea of students having guns. Monkey see monkey do! Besides schools are supposed to be a safe place and I know I would not feel safe if my coworkers had guns in their room. In my opinion it would just make guns even more accessible to students

What are your thoughts on this bill?

What with the general fear of a war for which all the world is now preparing, and the specific fear of murderous ideologies, it is really true that we all live in terror. We live in terror because dialogue is no longer possible, because man has surrendered entirely to history, because he can no longer find that part of himself, every bit as real as history, that sees beauty in the world and in human faces.
—  Albert Camus, Neither Victims nor Executioners 
Why Free Schools Are Not Free

by Frank Chodorov (1948)

Dixon is an obscure mountain village in New Mexico; population 1,200. Its obscurity is presently disturbed by a problem of democracy: the divorcement of secular and religious training in tax-supported schools. Reports have it that the Catholic citizenry, who seem to be politically in the ascendancy in New Mexico, have got hold of the management of the Dixon school system, introducing their catechism into the curriculum and putting the teaching nuns on the payroll. The Protestant minority vehemently denounce this as an abuse of democratic principle, as well as a misuse of public funds, and have brought the matter to law. Non-Catholic elements outside New Mexico have come to their support, and thus the contention becomes national in scope. Dixon is no longer a village; it is a new battleground in the old war between ecclesiasticism and secularism in education.

The issue will not be settled in the court of law, which can come up with only a temporary compromise, for involved is the larger question as to whether schooling is a proper function of the state. If we admit that it is, then we must also admit that the subject matter of education will be decided by those in control of the political machinery and will vary with the incidence of control. It is silly to think otherwise. The notion that a political institution can be divorced from politics is typical American jabberwocky.

Right now the group most concerned with getting control of tax-supported schools is the theologians. Catholics are particularly active in this effort—for reasons inherent in their faith— but that they have the support of other creeds was shown in the fight for “released time” in New York. Practically the entire clerical fraternity (except Jews, whose religious classes are conducted in the evening) joined in demanding that time be set aside for out-of-school religious education. Suppose the children prefer to devote this time to play, rather than the designated purpose; suppose they are encouraged to do so by their nonreligious parents, will not the clericals carry on? Will they not strive to put religious training into the regular curriculum? In the matter of “released time,” and in the demand that public funds be used to convey children to parochial schools, the clericals have shown that they can throw their political weight around. How can they be prevented from asking that their teachers be permitted to give religious instruction in the school buildings? Or, perhaps, that these teachers be put on the public payrolls?

Let us extend the doctrine of “separation” to other than religious subjects. Large gobs of socialistic doctrine have seeped into our school textbooks and teachers of that persuasion are its protagonists. While socialism is not organized along church lines, the element of faith in it gives that ideology a religious tinge, and the attitude of socialists toward nonbelievers as sinful and wicked suggests a further similarity. Well, how did socialism creep into the school curriculum if not by the political power acquired by its devotees? The outlawing of the teaching of evolution by the anti-Darwinians is another case in point. Then again, because the constitutionalists were in the ascendancy in the beginning of our country, the Federalist point of view never got into our history books. How can it be otherwise? As long as schooling is a function of the state, the dominant political group will determine what and how the children will be trained. And for good reason.

The business of education is the transmission of ideas from those who have them to those who are lacking; that is, from elders to youngsters. But, all ideas acquire value, and those which carry the greatest weight with the elders are the ones which the pupils will be exposed to. Education, therefore, can never be free from the prejudices and preconceptions of elders; even if the teacher enjoys “academic freedom,” he is not free from the values he has built up in his mind. Objectivity is impossible, save with a mind that is incapable of weighing facts. A transcendentalist will somehow drag in the concept of natural laws even in teaching physics, and the pragmatist will go out of his way to denounce it; a collectivist cannot help insinuating that Jefferson’s natural rights are an archaism, or extolling the modernism of Hamilton’s centralization idea. Can the free trader avoid berating protectionist history?

It is because of this value emphasis that private schools are established and endowed. The parent selects for his son a classical school or a military school because he puts a higher value on that kind of education; he believes his son is deserving of what he deems better, even if “better” is mere ostentation. One may question the judgment of the parent, but one does not question his right; it is his son and his money.

When we get into adult education the heterogeneity of values is most confusing. There are schools for the teaching of anarchism, the mystic religions, existentialism, decentralism, every shade of Marxism, the ideas of Mary Baker Eddy, of Henry George—schools without end, to say nothing of purely vocational schools. Every enthusiasm has its discipline, and so long as private opinion and private property are not outlawed there will be institutions designed to propagate it. Society is none the worse for this practice; in fact, it can be socially beneficial, so long as it remains a private pursuit, for the more values flying around in the cultural air, the less likelihood of its being fouled up with a dead uniformity.

The tax-supported school cannot permit such free flight to intellectual enthusiasm. By right of ownership every citizen feels that his values should be included in the curriculum, but by the same right others press their values and in the end somebody must be cheated. The monopolist objects because his line of business is disparaged in the economics course, the chauvinist denounces the history teacher for debunking national heroes, the classicist decries the emphasis on modernism, and—above all—the secularization made necessary by a diversity of creeds satisfies nobody except the irreligious. The tax-supported school is abomination to somebody, no matter what or how it teaches.

The state as teacher tries to keep to the middle road, which is a denial of all values and satisfies nobody. But, even as a compromiser the state is a failure, for it is compelled by political considerations to favor the values of the dominant elements in the community. The Texas school reader glamorizes the oil industry, trade unionism must be treated gingerly in industrial centers, and in the South “white supremacy” is intimated even by the fact of segregation. Furthermore, the attempt to find a compromise is abandoned and bias reigns supreme when the state grinds its own ax in the schoolroom. In mentioning our fiscal system, can the tax-paid teacher even hint at the immorality of taxation? Can he void the glorification of political scoundrels in the school books? And now that we have gone in for state capitalism in a big way, how can he question the correctness of TVA, public housing or the monopoly of the mails?

The private school—the school in which you pay for what you want—would be ideal if it were truly private. But, as in all human affairs, the tentacles of the state reach out into this sphere of education and create disturbance and iniquity. Escape from political interference is impossible as long as men use political means to advance their private purposes.

In pushing their claim for tax-paid transportation for parochial school pupils, the Catholics maintain that under our fiscal system they were paying double for the education of their children; they taxed themselves for the kind of education they deemed desirable and were levied upon for the maintenance of secular schools. Though the transportation issue was finally decided by the weight of the Catholic vote, not by reason, there is an enticing plausibility in this argument; but, when you extend it you come to disturbing questions. Since the general taxpayer provides books and lunches and equipment for the public school pupil, as well as transportation, why not spread this largess? Should not the private schoolteacher be put on the public payroll? On the other hand, if the taxpayer contributes anything to the maintenance of the private school, why should he not have some say in the subject manner taught?

Furthermore, private schools forfeit their right to complete privacy by asking for and getting tax favors; exemption of their real estate from local levies for one thing. Not only is the property they use for educational purposes untaxed, but in some localities even the property they rent out to commercial institutions is similarly favored. The exemption amounts to a subsidy. For the values of these properties, frequently located in city centers, are enhanced by the conveniences provided by the taxpayers; the amount of this subsidy is sometimes considerable, as can be ascertained when a school, or a church, disposes of its old site.

There are other tax favors which make the private school beholden to the state. Where sales taxes obtain, its purchases are frequently excused. If it carries on any commercial venture in connection with its educational business, such as publishing, that venture pays no tax profits. Then, of course, there is the big advantage of being able to advertise that under its “charter” contributions to its treasury are deductible in computing personal and corporation income taxes.

Thus, the private school sacrifices its integrity on the altar of special privilege. It cannot claim immunity for its values simply because it regularly sells out its immunity. Under the circumstances, “academic freedom”;—vis-a-vis the state—is a specious assertion; no private school is likely to jeopardize its privileges by teaching what the state may deem “subversive,” and should the state decide to make use of the school’s facilities (including the faculty and the curriculum) for its own purposes, it would be entirely within its rights.

In the full sense of the word, a free school is one that has no truck with the state, via its taxing powers. The more subsidized it is, the less free it is. What is known as “free education” is the least free of all, for it is a state-owned institution; it is socialized education—just like socialized medicine or the socialized post office—and cannot possibly be separated from political control. As for being “free” in the sense of being without cost, that is one of those impostor terms we like to use to hide ugly facts from ourselves; our public education is fully paid for, with all its deficiencies and inadequacies. And it is paid for mainly by the poor, not the rich, because the poor in the aggregate constitute the largest segment of society and therefore pay the most in taxes. It would be an interesting, though useless, exercise to compute the number of private schools that could be maintained with the total amount exacted from us, locally and nationally, for politicalized education.

The root question raised by the Dixon affair is not the separation of the church from the school; it is the separation of the school from the state. The channeling of education along religious lines is a consequence of socialization. These days we associate the effort to introduce ecclesiasticism into the schoolroom with the Catholic church. But, the fact is that in the early history of our country the Protestant denominations fought bitterly against the secularization of all American institutions, including the school, and their lack of success was due mainly to their rivalries; wherever any sect was in the saddle, its particular catechism was obligatory education. Even in the lifetime of the present writer, the reading of the New Testament in the daily school assembly was objected to by the Jews, who were promptly rebuffed with the assertion that this is a “Christian country.” It should be recalled that only the agnostic leanings of several constitutional fathers prevented the official designation of the new nation as a “Christian country”;—which, by a strange twist of bigotry, meant an anti-Catholic country; there were few Jews and fewer Muhammadans in the colonies.

If we start with the premise that education is a proper function of the state, we must be prepared to accept the corollary: that the kind of education the state dispenses will be that which those in control think desirable. For the state is not an impersonal or impartial diety; it is a committee of persons, replete with desires, prejudices, values. To the Catholic the highest values are embraced in the sacraments of his church—enjoying divine sanction—and his conscience impels him to promote acceptance of these values. For a thousand years, therefore, he has been preeminently a teacher. When the opportunity falls into his hands, as it has in Dixon, to use political power to advance his cause, he would indeed be lacking in integrity if he failed to take advantage of it. Would it be any different if a Hindu, a Baptist, an atheist, or a communist fell heir to political power?

This wrangling over ecclesiasticism in education is a Tweedledee-Tweedledum argument. If we would reform our educational system basically, we must desocialize it. We must put it back where it belongs, in the hands of parents. Theirs is the responsibility for the breeding of children, and theirs is the responsibility for the upbringing. The first error of public schooling is the shifting of this responsibility, the transformation of the children of men into wards of the state. All the other evils follow from that.

Partial link description: Despite the CIA’s release of previously classified documents in 2013 that acknowledged the existence of Area 51 as a top-secret U.S. government research facility, many questions about the site remain unanswered. One of the most innocuous, but nonetheless puzzling, is its choice of name. Although theories abound, one plausible explanation is that the moniker derives from its designation as a nuclear weapons testing site.Situated in the desert in southern Nevada, within the boundaries of the Nellis Air Force Range (NAFR) and just outside of the northeast corner of the Nevada Test Site (NTS), Area 51 and its neighbors, which also includes the Tonopah Test Range (TTR), have hosted some of the most significant weapons testing performed on the planet during the 20th century.In addition to isolation, the 3.5 million acre region around and including Area 51 boasts other qualities that make it an excellent place to conduct secret tests and training. The dry climate provides superior flying conditions, the variety of terrain helps with gunnery practice, and several dry lake beds are available for emergency landings, including, notably, Groom Lake – situated just north of Area 51.


It doesn’t’ take a rocket scientists to figure out what a bankrupt government will do—just like any thief, they’ll go after easy targets first

A member of my staff caught an obscure resolution that was introduced in the US House of Representatives last week—Resolution no. 41.

The fact that there was essentially no coverage of this Resolution really shows how the mainstream media is completely turning a blind eye to the true fiscal situation of the United States of America.

The entire point of the resolution is to say that the federal government is broke.

It can’t pay its own bills, and therefore is shouldn’t be responsible to pay anyone else’s either.

It doesn’t’ take a rocket scientists to figure out what a bankrupt government will do—just like any thief, they’ll go after easy targets first.

The easiest target of all is future generations.

They’re going to run up the debt as high as they can, which essentially means pulling future tax revenues into today. It’s the easiest tax of all, because unborn children do not vote.

The estate tax is another one to watch out for—because, like unborn children, dead people don’t vote either.

We had a great podcast yesterday about retirement savings, where there’s an easy $5 trillion treasure chest for them to raid.

And, of course, there’s the greatest tax of all, the inflation tax, which decreases the standard of living for most of the population as the cost of living rises much faster than incomes.

This Resolution is a pretty scary dose of honesty. But again, what’s even more concerning is that it was just ignored and has objectively a zero percent chance of passing.

I do encourage you to check it out though—even the government is admitting it’s finished.

I’ll quote from the Resolution now without comment and wish you a very pleasant weekend:

Whereas the Federal Government, as of January 2015, is carrying more than $18.0 trillion in debt, of which $13.0 trillion is owed to the public and $5.08 trillion is owed to Social Security and other trust funds;

Whereas foreign governments, individuals, and corporations as of October 2014 own 47 percent of Federal debt held by the public;

Whereas Social Security’s unfunded liabilities in 2014 are $10.6 trillion over 75 years and $24.9 trillion over the infinite horizon;

Whereas the Federal debt held by the public is expected to increase by more than $7 trillion from 2014 to 2024 according to the Congressional Budget Office;

Whereas more than 16 percent of the entire Federal budget goes directly to States and local governments;

Whereas more than 22 percent of total State and local government general revenue comes from the Federal Government according to Census Bureau’s latest Annual Survey of State and Local Government Finance;

Whereas several State and local pension plans are expected to fully exhaust their funds within ten years.

* * *

Theory and practical application can be very different . Take our government for example. In theory the idea of dividing power so no branch becomes too powerful is a noble idea that theoretically only mature responsible people would be drawn to and become a part of.

In practice? Our leaders are a bunch of elderly frat boys (and a few girls) who just want to have fun and are controlled by big businesses.