Lynn Swearingen (c) copyright 2011 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I like the number three and it has nothing to do with this post – sort of.

Let me digress for a moment to discuss exactly what “three” means to me. Three slices of pizza is about the right serving, three half-gallons of Ice Cream might last the entire week if no one has a fancy for an extra scoop or two, and three branches of Government was a great concept 223 years ago.

However those three branches of Government – Legislative, Executive and Judicial for Senator Schumers edification (who seems after 12 years of public service not to have grasped the concept of how the government is set up) – are failing in the original objective.

One would think a 12-year U.S. senator would know better than to state, “We have three branches of government: We have a House, the Senate, we have a president.” Yet on Jan. 30, he did exactly that on CNN’s “State of the Union.” Further, host Candy Crowley did not call Schumer on the error. So, either she did not want to point it out, or she didn’t know any better. Either way, she is incompetent.

Of course for some of the Legislative branch, 12 is a magic number (as in the years requiring public school students to labor away in those prison cells called classrooms) what can one expect.

I digress yet again – gee – there oughta’ be a law.

That is the true purpose of this blog. “There oughta’ be a law”. Some of my acquaintances think that the Bill of Rights is too long – it should have been stopped after “Congress shall make no law” and these days, I am not so sure I disagree. Most of the citizenry of this Nation are wondering right now “What happened?”. How did the elite grab such power and create such a debacle which is seemingly unable to be dismantled?

In my opinion three things happened.

Lobbyists, Lethargy and Latent Lies

I’m as guilty as the rest for the majority of my adult life in thinking “Who am I to change Congress. It’s a big ol’ world and I cannot travel at a whim to Washington to express my opinion.” Off went an email or letter expressing my disapproval and I turned over responsibility to someone else to represent my displeasure. Then crawling down off of my Don Quixote-esk white charger, brushing my hands of which ever albatross that was upon my conscience and moving forward with my daily life –  I possessed a smug sense of having “done the right thing.”

As the majority of free thinking individuals have discovered by now, the above actions did nothing but assuage my self guilt and support the nasty little system that has taken two centuries to develop.

A few years ago I pondered, considered, contemplated, re-examined and used all the catch phrases to analyze where exactly my thought process went wrong. After much determination, and a few discussions with a very patient spouse, I discovered that the concept of Freedom was alive and well in my soul. It was the modus operandi I was attempting to utilize that was flawed.

For those of you not familiar with Don Quixote, he sought to change his world by depending on books of chivalry to explain the way to go about living his life in a meaningful fashion. (Enter a brief Wiki synopsis for those of you whom haven’t the time to digest the entire depressing story):

The protagonist of the book is Alonso Quixano (or Quijano), a retired country gentleman nearing 50 years of age, who lives in an unnamed section of La Mancha with his niece and a housekeeper. He has become obsessed with books of chivalry, and believes their every word to be true, despite the fact that many of the events in them are clearly impossible. Quixano eventually appears to other people to have lost his mind due to lack of sleep and food from dedicating all of his time to reading.

Second act:

While Part One was mostly farcical, the second half is more serious and philosophical about the theme of deception. Don Quixote’s imaginings are made the butt of outrageously cruel practical jokes carried out by wealthy patrons. Even Sancho is unintentionally forced to deceive him at one point. Trapped into finding Dulcinea, Sancho brings back three dirty and ragged peasant girls, and tells Quixote that they are Dulcinea and her ladies-in-waiting. When Don Quixote only sees the peasant girls, Sancho pretends that Quixote suffers from a cruel spell which does not permit him to see the truth. Sancho eventually gets his imaginary island governorship and unexpectedly proves to be wise and practical; though this, too, ends in disaster. The cruel practical jokes eventually lead Don Quixote to a great melancholy. The novel ends with Don Quixote regaining his full sanity, and renouncing all chivalry. But, the melancholy remains, and grows worse. Sancho tries to restore his faith, but his attempt to resurrect Alonso’s alter-ego fails, and Alonso Quixano dies, sane and broken.

In my own way I chose to look at the process of how our government has been run and attempt to change it from afar. I could be found reading Supreme Court decisions with a law dictionary beside me while attempting to create out of thin air a concept of “rightness” that I must be missing. After a few years of stumbling about the thought came to me “Freedom is Faith in your own destiny through changing what you can at a level that is attainable.”

So I began to look around at proposed State Laws that nibbled away at the Freedom I longed to retain. Notice that I didn’t say “want” as Freedom is something we are inherently born with in this Nation yet allow others to legislate away. What I found was that “Nibbly Imperceptible Bills” (NIBs I call them) were steadily eroding the Liberty I thought I had.

And that, Reader, is the point of this blog. By ferreting out the nasty little NIBs and calling attention to them, I have found that they can be stopped in State House Committees before they rise to the point of oppression. By shining the light of truth upon the corners of the cockroach infested Capitals, one can keep the roaches running until they either drop from exhaustion or just die in Committee.

So my NIB of the Day is this little Gem from Texas –  HB 998 (PDF)


Proposal Would Require You to Buy Insurance–On Your Dog!

State Rep. Ruth Jones McClendon (D-San Antonio) has introduced a bill that would require any Texan who owns a male dog which weighs 20 pounds or more and is not neutered to have an insurance policy covering injuries or damage caused by that dog when it is off the leash or out of the dog’s yard, 1200 WOAI’s Michael Board reports.

 

“Unrestrained un-neutered male dogs over 20 pounds have a higher tendency toward aggression,” McClendon said.


So if one were to read this law, a nineteen pound fifteen ounce dog which retains his testicles and has not consumed his morning kibble before visiting the vet does not need to be covered. However his litter mate who has scarfed down more than his share of scooby snacks is somehow subject to more Legislation (to the tune of a $100,000 Insurance Policy)?


If you live in Texas and believe the above to be a NIB, contact State Representative McClendon and express your concerns.

 

Also – I’m always on the lookout for new NIBs to expose to the light of truth. Send the proposed Bill Number and why you think it deserves to be the NIB of the Day and let’s get those lights shining in the corners!