Random thought of the day

The Federal government has laws against marijuana use, possession, and sales. Although heavily regulated in Washington state you can soon buy pot in stores and people currently openly admit to using it in private. To the best of my knowledge the Feds have not and do not plan to prosecute anyone for violation of their marijuana laws but continue to do so in other states.

But the Feds aggressively fight the Firearms Freedom Act in the states which have passed such laws. And I’m certain that if I started manufacturing guns and selling them in Montana, Idaho or any of the other FFA states without a license or complying with the hundreds if not thousands of Federal laws and regulations on firearms I would soon get an unpleasant visit from the Feds.

What does this mean? Doesn’t it mean that laws are enforced by the whim of the politicians in power? How is this different than having laws against assault and battery but not enforcing them if the victim is of the “wrong” color, religion, or sexual-orientation?

You have to “just know” the law does or doesn’t apply to you this week/month/election-cycle. I firmly believe it would be better that all laws be vigorously and equally enforced. The outrage would result in the stupid laws being repealed.

The existence of a multitude of unenforced laws is a huge risk. How you ask? With so many things being illegal it means our government has the power to arbitrarily imprison anyone at any time. We have fully equipped our government with tyrannical powers just waiting for the “right person” to use them.


21 thoughts on “Random thought of the day

  1. There certainly have been a number of recent notorious cases of laws not being enforced by policy. I hadn’t heard about this (MJ) one, but it’s not all that surprising. And the fact that the analogous firearms laws do get rigorously enforced makes sense. After all, MJ is beneficial to politicians (it’s a source of graft) — or at most, for the occasional honest one, it’s harmless. But armed citizens are a scary thing for the power hungry. (The WSJ had a cartoon some years ago showing two guys walking down the steps of the US Capitol. Caption: “Of course I favor gun controls. Who wants to have armed taxpayers?”)
    This reminds me of the Dutch approach. No, MJ is NOT legal in Holland, as many people believe. Instead, it is “tolerated”. In other words, there is an expressly stated policy (for now) that the laws on the books will not be enforced. Or more precisely, they will not be enforced against retain buyers. They DO get enforced against growers and wholesalers. That means, yes indeed, that a MJ store is operating “legally” when it sells MJ to ordinary customers, but it is exposed to prosecution when it buys in bulk to restore its inventory. No, I am NOT making this up.
    I don’t suppose that selective enforcement is at all new. What may be new is the scale of it. It probably has always been true that the “aristocrats of pull” would avoid consequences for acts that normal people would not get away with. But having it applied to large population groups seems different.

    As for “you just have to know” — that brings up another point. You cannot know. I argue that there is not a single human in this country who knows the law. “Ignorance of the law is no excuse” — baloney. No one knows the law, it’s impossible to know it given that every day there are 250 pages of new law to be read. Do you read every page of the Federal Register every day? Of course not. Nor does any judge, nor does any lawyer.

  2. Arbitrary and Capricious: “A willful and unreasonable action without consideration or in disregard of facts or law or without determining principle.”

  3. Obligatory Atlas Shrugged quote:

    “There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Who wants a nation of law-abiding citizens? What’s there in that for anyone? But just pass the kinds of laws that can neither be observed nor enforced nor objectively interpreted – and you create a nation of lawbreakers – and then you cash in on guilt. Now that’s the system, Mr. Rearden, that’s the game, and once you understand it, you’ll be much easier to deal with.”

    • Wasn’t she the one that also said to let a murderer go because murdering made him happy…no, she didn’t I’m finding out but she did write praise for a man who kidnapped, raped, and dismembered a 12 year old girl all the while taunting the police.

      I don’t know that I’d use her as a role model or a good source of ‘righteous’ quotes.

      But..whatever works I guess.

      • I think maybe you have a misunderstanding of what she wrote (and didn’t even publish) about a character inspired by William Edward Hickman.

        Do you have a reference for your claim?

        • I’d have to google it again and I’m not about to waste the time on that woman again.

          • This is argument by association, or ad hominem. I refute it thusly;
            If Adolf Hitler declared that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, I would not start disagreeing with it because it came from Hitler. Ergo, I will not take a brilliant quote from Ayn Rand and dismiss it because she may have said or done something else that was stupid.

            In other words; I don’t attach myself to an idea because it came from a particular person– I attach myself to an idea because it’s a good idea, regardless where it came from. I don’t idolize or worship people, or put them on pedestals, and then eat up everything they say because I worship them.

            To reject an idea because some who advocate it have personal problems is the same as embracing an idea because someone who promotes it is some kind of super-star or Earthly God. Both are equally irrational. Those are authoritarian arguments at best.

            It’s not about the person, so please save your argumentum ad hominem for some place else. No doubt it would be possible to find some very stupid comment made by anyone (I’m certainly guilty) and by that standard then Einstein’s Theory of Relativity should be dismissed out of hand because of something he may have said or did at some point in his life that was dumb or even evil.

          • Hitler liked animals, children and was a teetotaler, nonsmoker and a vegetarian who rejected traditional mainstream religion.
            Those associations are not reasons to be cruel to animals and children, drink and smoke to excess, condemn vegetarians or uncritically embrace mainstream religion.

            A cite will go a long way towards convincing us you didn’t just pull that concept out of your @ss because you didn’t have any substantive basis for refutation and a smear is as good as a fact.

      • By your own argument, I shouldn’t pay any attention to anything you have ever said or will ever say. I’m sure that if enough people looked into your past closely enough, they’d find something that is or could be twisted into seeming mortally repugnant to me. I’m sure enough that it’s there that I don’t need to know any details about whatever it was to render everything you say unworthy of even basic examination. So, good luck with that.

      • Considering that what you claim is in DIRECT opposition to EVERY tenant of her belief system, I have to request either a verifiable citation, or I have to throw a BS flag and call this a flat out lie.

    • I’m sure there are thousands if not 10s or 100s of thousands of people that have concerns similar to mine.

      Turley expresses himself and the concerns on a “completely different plane of existence” than I am capable of. I agree with what he has to say but he presumes the president considers himself bound to constitutional limits. I don’t think that he has any concerns about what the constitution says and will continue to ignore it as long as he is in office. He, and his supporters, have the fundamental tenet of their political philosophy that the “right outcome” is more important than the process. The constitution is about process and hence it is nearly irrelevant to them.

      • But of course, when the “wrong” outcome is in the offing, then they are all about process, process, process!
        “Head I win, tails you lose” is the game they play.

      • You sound like this president came into power and then all of these things just suddenly came to be (regarding constitutional overreach). Are you going to be surprised when I tell you it’s been like this for years? Years and years and years?

        • It’s been building for decades but I don’t think it has ever been more obvious than with the examples above and the Obamacare issues.

          It needs to be reined in regardless of who is in office.

        • I seem to recall people like Joe being concerned when Bush was doing it too, and Clinton, etc.

          • It would be rude and cruel to claim that Ubu’s Ignorance is anything but intentional.

            She doesn’t care about these abuses of power, she DOES care that Bush did things and Bush is bad (because Republican, not because he was an authoritarian bastard, or a warmonger), But we can’t talk bad about Obama who has done nothing but EXPANDED on Bush’s abuse because Democrat good.

            If Ubu could feel shame she would have done it by now.

  4. “There’s nothing in the constitution that says the Federal government has got anything to do with most of the stuff that we do.” — James Clyburn (D-SC)
    He’s the #3 ranking Democrat in the House. But as ubu52 correctly points out, the bad guys have been doing this stuff, and getting away with it, for at least a century, arguably a century and a half.

    • ” Others did it too” is an argument only children (or the childless who haven’t grown up) can make, it is the argument every child makes when you tell him or her No. Murderers or even shoplifters cannot go free merely because they can point to someone who has committed a similar crime and gone unpunished. As Adam Gura said, in I forget which Supreme Court case, and I’m paraphrasing, merely because the Government has violated the constitution for a century is not authority to continue doing so.

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