The Best Compromise Ever

On Thursday, December 20 at around 9:02 and 11:53 am, WFIU FM (Bloomington, Indiana) will air the following in a segment of “Speak Your Mind:”

“This is Andy Horning, and I have what I think is a reasonable request:   

I want politicians to obey written laws, as written.  No “interpretation” from the bench; no “legal precedents;” no ifs, ands or buts. 

If a law is unclear, politicians can clarify it in print.  If a law is bad, then they can change it, or delete it – in print.     

But I want no more fudging or cheating.  I want politicians to obey what’s written, as written.

In other words, I want the Rule of Law under state and federal constitutions, right here in the USA, that we say we’re fighting for in Iraq. 

That’s it.  That’s what I want.   

Yes, I know.  Constitutions are called “outdated,” as if they can’t be amended.  Constitutions are called “living documents,” as if that makes it OK to swindle them, too.    

It’s no surprise that politicians say such things.  Constitutions are a leash on politicians, after all, and you’d never expect those bad dogs to beg for the leash. 

But most of us have problems with constitutions too.     

Take the Bill of Rights.  Many of us want the 2nd Amendment, but many of us don’t.  About half of us want the 4th and 5th Amendments, but half don’t.  It seems that nobody wants the whole 1st amendment, and almost everybody completely ignores the ninth and tenth.   

We apparently can’t accept that the whole constitution is both the best compromise ever, and the law.  We’re quick to call an unconstitutional foul when it suits us, but are otherwise happy to ignore the laws that protect us from oppression, slavery, genocide and war. 

I challenge you to take just a little time and actually read the state and federal constitutions.  See for yourself if you’re willing to give your neighbor his freedom in order to secure your own.  I’m betting that you’ll conclude that the best compromise of all time is good enough. 

So let’s do this:  Let’s demand that our politicians keep their oaths of office, and obey the laws that both authorize, and limit, their powers.  Let’s accept nothing less.   

Then we will enjoy the blessings of liberty – by allowing others theirs, too. 

For Speak Your Mind, this is Andy Horning.”

 On Friday, the MP3 should be in WFIU’s Archives section.  

It’s Time for an Epiphany



I feel sick that not everybody got the message that the press conference had been cancelled; and that some brave patriots (including Paul Wheeler, dressed like a 1770’s patriot, and my old comrades Eric Barnes and Kurt St. Angelo) went to the Statehouse anyway. 

While it looks like a good time was had by all…I apologize!

A lot of people had planned to drive two hours or more each way (including me and my family), and that made no sense on a sleet/snow/death day like Saturday, so I cancelled.


Attached  is a copy of the letter I sent to the Governor in both hardcopy and digital form; and here’s roughly what I would’ve said at the press conference: 

“On December 15, 1791, the Bill Of Rights was ratified to protect citizens from the threat of ungoverned government.  Over the last two hundred and sixteen years, those precious laws have been twisted, inverted and …”interpreted” until they’ve been stolen from us, and our rights are now just an illusion. 

We want our laws back.

We are here today to ask that our politicians keep their oaths of office.  We say it’s time that all politicians and law enforcement personnel who swore to uphold and defend both the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of Indiana …do just that. 

We ask, in short, that politicians obey written laws, as written.  No exceptions.  No provisos.  No ifs, ands or buts. 

Thank you. I will now take questions.”

Don’t worry; we’ll reschedule another event.    

In the meantime, assemble your own proof of the abuses heaped upon us by politicians (that’s the easy part).  And get ready. 

Remember, the problem isn’t taxes, wire-tapping, wars, immigration, gay marriage, the Colts, or the Central Library expansion.  Those are only symptoms

This is certainly not about Mitch Daniels or even Ron Paul (even though I support Dr. No 100%).  Ideas are bigger than people.

We must not nibble at the branches of our corruption tree, or be distracted by what are only the symptoms of our communal disease.  We need to strike at the root of all of our most serious problems. 

We need to treat the cause.  We must ask for the law, as written, to be obeyed.  Nothing else will do, you know.  Nothing else has ever worked.Please pass this along.  Shout it in the streets.  And then get ready. 

The next wave of citizen awakening is beginning.

It is time, now.   

Re-thinking education. No; REALLY re-thinking education.

Every election season politicians scold us about “education.”  We must pay more, we are told, for the education of our young.  And this education must last from near-birth until at least a Bachelors Degree.  That’s a long time to entrust our kids into govenment schools.  That’s a long time to spend before starting your life.  That’s a lot of money that could be invested in other ways.

Does this make any sense?

Computer Moguls Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak (Apple); Bill Gates and Paul Allen (Microsoft), Lawrence Ellison (Oracle) and Michael Dell (Dell) are not the only famous and successful college dropouts.  There are lots of them.  There are also an awful lot of successful people who’d dropped out of high school, or never had any formal schooling at all.

Nobody would be surprised that Jimmy Dean, Louis Armstrong and most other performers aren’t well-educated in the formal sense.  Even gifted writers like Mark Twain, Faulkner and Shakespeare …especially ones like Jackie Collins, had no credentials other than success.  And why bother to mention painters like Monet and van Gogh?  You’d never expect a famous artist to possess a PhD, or even both ears.

Maybe political pundit types like Rush Limbaugh and Nina Totenberg don’t count since they just talk, and it’s their listeners about whose education we need to ponder.  For similar reasons, politicians probably shouldn’t count.  It’s voters who really call the shots.  But not even the brilliant Patrick Henry (he did gain a law degree, but he taught himself…as did President Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln) or George Washington had college education.  Perhaps political theorists like Henry George and Thomas Paine should’ve had college degrees; but they didn’t.

It’s a little odd that politicians, a class of society that ranks lower than you might suspect in education achievement, push us so hard into government schools; but let us continue…

Certainly, you can imagine that multi-billionaires like Kirk Kerkorian, Richard Branson, Robert Maxwell or Thomas Haffa didn’t need college education to amass vast college-free wealth like Kroc and Carnegie and Rockefeller and… 

Hmmm… Is that why they call them “self-made millionaires?”

But what about inventors and scientists like George Eastman and Benjamin Franklin?  How about the Wright brothers, Henry Ford, Michael Faraday, Anton van Leeuwenhoek, Heinrich Schliemann and …Albert Einstein?

Well, sort of.  Einstein wrote his first scientific papers while in high school, dropped out, later failed an entrance exam to college and came up with a lot of his most famous ideas before actually finishing high school.  He eventually got a college degree, but then was unemployed.  He became famous while he worked as …a patent clerk.

Scientists don’t usually become famous anymore, so you’d probably not have heard that child-prodigies like Philip Emeagwali and Jaron Lanier dropped out of high school before their successes in science. 

And if you were to poll the boardrooms of the biggest companies in the world, you may find a bunch of MBAs sitting around the tables.  But the people in the Big Chairs are more often college dropouts – or they never even went to college.  It’s fact that the bulk of the world’s millionaires made their money in real estate, where post-middle-school education just isn’t that useful.  Many other millionaires simply sell stuff, and you don’t need a degree for that.

Yet it’s also fact that throughout history, many of the greatest inventors, scientists, engineers, philosophers, musicians, writers and polymaths (“Renaissance Men” who excelled in numerous fields) had little to no formal education.  Thomas Edison had only three weeks of formal schooling.  Many people, like H.G. Wells, taught for years before they got a college degree, then became famous for doing something barely related to their education.

Despite all the political hand-wringing about a lack of “science and math education,” we have an awful lot of science and math graduates who’re either unemployed, or working in areas unrelated to their education.

Why am I going on about all this?  Because one would be hard-pressed to come up with a successful person who got successful correctly.  That’s why.  Few notably-successful people do what our Teachers Union-Approved education system says is necessary for success. 

…And because well-over half of your local tax load supports a big, fat lie.  That’s why.

Personally, I wish I’d not wasted so much time getting my head twisted around in college.  I wish I had recognized the faulty programming I was receiving sooner, and had acted in the interests of my own life, instead of playing out the whims and bad ideas of politicians.  It could have been like adding twenty years to my life.

None of us should be ants, operating as a collective and living only for the hive.  None of us are machine parts, to be assembled by an all-knowing state into a transmission of political values.  I grieve for the young minds and souls being lock-stepped into some illusory and backwards “diversity,” which amounts to the ultimate conformity, crushing the individuals we were born to be.  Our founders had a much better plan in mind for us, of course.  

And yet, home-schooling moms just may build an even better future than what our founders dared dream:

Imagine learning without any political interference at all. 

Imagine learning where those who’re most deeply connected to a child’s well-being and development as a successful person, are the ones who feed the mind as well as the body.

Imagine kids coming from home-schools growing up with the knowledge that politicians did not make them what they are today. 

Imagine that these kids then look at the world and political tangles we leave them, and then declare it not good enough.

Ahhh…There is hope. 

Mitch’s Tax Plan?

While I’ve talked about it plenty, it just occurred to me that I’d never written down what I think of the Governor’s tax plan.  And that should be a very easy thing to do…

First, I never, ever said that simply eliminating property tax and replacing it with sales tax would solve any serious problems.  This was misreporting by the media and misinterpretation by a lot of people.  Simply changing tax policy, or swapping one tax for another only moves numbers around.  It solves nothing – especially in the long run.  …And especially considering the web-work of “federal”/state tax rules (corporate status, speech rights, tax “deductions,” etc.) that have made us all serfs, we can’t eliminate one tax up front without taking another tax in the, um…well…somewhere else.

All taxes are a kind of property tax.  Government seizes your income (money), sales (money) or property tax (money) in differing ways but the same ultimate effect.  And if you don’t pay, and aren’t rich/powerful enough to fight back, the government will take more of your property. 

People lose homes to income tax too, y’know.

Though Indiana’s implementation of property tax is awful, the problem isn’t just tax policy; the problem is un-governed government – or power without limits written down in law.  Our politicians are breaking the laws that authorize their powers, and that is what has lead to outrageous spending, and of course, destructive taxation.

Governor Daniels’ proposal does push school funding an infinitesimal fraction closer to what is mandated by the Indiana Constitution (just an itty-bitty, truly tiny fraction).  But other than that, his proposal protects only the governments’ treasury, not citizens’ rights and property.   He shuffles around numbers and leaves untouched the illegal practice of stealing homes to sate political greed.  

There is only one solution to our mess, and that is to lasso our politicians back under law.  In Indiana, that law is both the Indiana Constitution, and the Constitution of the United States of America.  In Indiana, all of our elected officials, police and armed forces swear an oath to uphold both; and it’s time they Just Do It.