Calexit? No. Nix it? Yes.

Hansel and Gretel used breadcrumbs to mark the trail to the witch’s home. They made it to the house, but when they looked back, birds had eaten the breadcrumbs.

The U.S. Constitution provides the legal process for a territory to become a state, but absolutely no process for a state or states to secede from the union.

Article IV, Section. 3

New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union; but no new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or Parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress.

The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State.

Eleven states united to secede from the union way back in the day of Abraham Lincoln. It didn’t work. Over a half-million Americans perished in that horrific civil war.

Confederate States Map

Only by means of a constitutional amendment can a legal process be crafted to allow a state to secede from the union.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

Government-Off-The-Rails – A sordid tale of establishment corruption

mueller expands his probe again
Image: Frontpage Magazine 21 July 2017

The stated purpose for the Special Prosecutor is to investigate possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

So, when did Mr. Donald Trump become Candidate Donald Trump? The answer is July 2016 when he announced his candidacy.

It’s time for all Americans, regardless political affiliation, to rise up and say ENOUGH!! Enough of this mindless campaign to overturn the 2016 Presidential election.

Mueller expands his “investigation” a second time for a span of TEN YEARS prior to the 2016 elections.

Background: Mueller is a Democrat, a former FBI director who hired a staff of Democrat lawyers that were all Clinton contributors. Even Senator Chuck Schumer should have the discernment that this is government-off-the-rails.

While there is ZERO evidence of wrongdoing by Mr. Trump, there is ample evidence of wrongdoing by Mrs. Clinton. Why is there no investigation of her? Have the establishment people so compromised Jeff Sessions that he cannot do the right things?

Today I will tell my two U.S. Senators, John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, to end the witch hunt that threatens our national security, our international prestige, and, if allowed to continue, will cause investors to lose confidence in the United States of America. When investors lose faith in the economy, there will be a disastrous depression the likes of which the world has never seen.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

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Your Congregation: Is it a CULT or a CHURCH?

As my wife and I left church Saturday evening, I recalled how mainstream religious leaders in Jerusalem accused the Apostle Paul of being a member of a cult called The Way.

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Without a doubt, followers of The Way caused quite the stir throughout the Middle East and Asia. It was said of the followers of The Way they “turned the world upside down”.

Our Dallas Campus of Gateway Church is but one of five substantial satellite congregations linked by video to the ‘mother ship’ in Southlake, TX.

This is not our first experience with a mega church. We were members of Church On The Rock (COTR), the original ‘mother ship’ of a movement out of which amazing ministries were spawned. Headquarters for two of those ministries, Global Advance and Christ for India, are here in Rockwall, Texas.

Traditional church leaders and skeptics labeled us a cult. Were the accusations a product of ignorance or jealousy? Regardless, it was an accusation that warranted a response.

Lake Pointe Church is a mega church with satellite campuses and a global outreach. Is Lake Pointe a cult?

How about Prestonwood Baptist Church or the First Baptist Church of Dallas? These all substantially impact populations around the globe.

Pastor Larry Lea was exasperated. In round numbers, 11,000 souls were coming to our little church building in Rockwall every Sunday. There were five Sunday services to accommodate everyone. We had over 700 home group leaders to assure individuals were never without a personal connection, yet thousands came in one way as thousands went out another.

Local gossip wags and some news people accused us of being a cult.

This moved him to ask us the question: “How can you tell the difference between a cult and the church?”

The answer: “A cult is very easy to get into and very hard to get out of. The church is hard to get into and easy to get out of.”

Sadly, end times prophecies unfold before our eyes as atheism and hedonism attempt to suffocate all things Christian including constitutionally-protected freedoms of thought, worship, and public expression. This is the bad news.

Here’s the Good News: Jesus is Lord and God is still on his throne. Actually, all the evil happening is good news because it signals the second coming of Messiah. All the stuff happening now was foretold long, long ago. How in the world is this good news? It’s good news because you can confidently trust your Bible as the Word of God.

To be an effective member of a good church you must be willing to put forth the effort. If you are seeker-sensitive, looking for someone to hold your hand as you rehearse your somebody-done-me-wrong song, good luck with that.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

 

Immigrants – Who Needs Them?

Debates and discussions on the subject of immigration policies go unresolved due to intransigent postures of the persons on either side of the issue.

us-immigration-and-naturalization

Does the United States of America need immigrants? This is a great question. Let’s ask a few more questions.

What is a sustainable population? For the U.S.A., a sustainable birth rate is 2.1 births per woman. In 2016, our nation’s birth rate was 1.9 births per woman.

us fertility rate 2016

“Today, almost 50% of women between the ages of 25 and 29 are childless. In fact, the highest rate of childless women aged 15 to 44 since the US Census Bureau began tracking it in 1976 was reported in 2014 when 47.6% of American women had no children.” – Population Education

How does the U.S. compare to some other nations? In 2016, the birthrate of Japan was 1.45 births per woman. In Russia, the rate was 1.77 births per woman and 2.18 in Mexico.

Do Immigrants Steal Jobs from Americans? Another great question. Let’s test the job market.

How many posted job openings go unfilled? The following article from Forbes reports,

At a recent media event touting the need for apprentice programs, Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka pointed to the latest news from the U.S. Department of Labor: There are currently 6 million job openings in the United States.

The data come from the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), which is released monthly. The survey reports an increase of 400,000 job openings at the end of April 2017 as compared to April 2016.

The job market is so strong that businesses and economists believe the inability to find workers is harming economic growth and could encourage companies to move operations. Zimmer Biomet, a maker of artificial orthopedic devices located in Warsaw, Indiana, cannot find sufficient workers for its factory. “It is struggling to find enough workers, despite offering some of the region’s best pay and benefits,” according to the Washington Post.

What is the future of a nation for which the birth rate cannot sustain it?

I propose my fellow Americans set aside intransigence on either side of the immigration issue to take the time to question the present and future of our nation with respect to sustaining the population and our common prosperity.

While our nation was founded on solid Christian principles, the principles don’t fund functions of government. Taxpayers do this. Government tends to uphold spending as the birthrate declines, leaving the next generation of Americans saddled with ever greater levels of taxation.

One can argue that the federal government has an insatiable appetite to spend. While both parties claim to want to reign in spending, both seem to try to outdo the other while in control of Congressional ‘purse strings’.

Debates are healthy because they lead to finding common ground essential to making America great again.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

Encourage Millenials to Duh-ble Up on History Studies

Campus Reform interviews students to learn why they prefer socialism and what they know about it.

What is socialism?

One online dictionary defines it as “a theory or system of social organization in which the means of production and distribution of goods are owned and controlled by groups or by the government.” Of necessity, we must seek a definition of the word theory: “an explanation for some fact or behavior claimed to be true but not yet proven“.margaret thatcher on socialism

President Ronald Reagan said, “Socialism only works in two places: Heaven where they don’t need it and hell where they already have it.”

I hasten to add the wisdom of Sir Winston Churchill who said, “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.”

Socialism will forever be a theory because it has never worked in the past and will never work in the future.

Where is Socialism on the Political Scale? Left or Right?

Simple answer: neither left nor right.

The true scale of government ranges from the atheistic worldview of totalitarianism to the worldview of Christians and Jews who put their trust in God instead of a state.

As early as 1861, Bible-believing preachers appealed for the motto “In God We Trust” to be printed on all coinage. By an act of Congress in 1863, the U.S. Treasury was directed to feature the motto on all U.S. coins.

On July 30, 1956, President Eisenhower signed an Act of Congress that made In God We Trust our official national motto.

More to the Point

Atheists (the anti-God, anti-Christian, anti-Jew people) liken Christian conservatives who follow the Rule of Law to be NAZIs and fascists. Here’s another definition for you millennials. NAZI is an acronym for the German National Socialist Party.

It is the atheists who demand ever more government control of our lives, the very definition of fascism – bundling of citizens. Socialist Naziism is but one form of fascism. In fact, state-imposed socialism is inherently fascist. I point to the ObamaCare fines and taxes as evidence of U.S. government imposed socialism.

Millenials need to learn history and use a dictionary to discover why they do not want socialism. Holy Scripture says, ” You shall know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

In God We Trust

John White
Rockwall, Texas

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From Right to Left – A Call for Reform of Civil Assett Forfeiture

civil asset forfeiture paved with good intentions

“This system—where police can seize property with limited judicial oversight and retain clarence_thomas_u_s_supreme_court_justiceit for their own use—has led to egregious and well-chronicled abuses. These forfeiture operations frequently target the poor and other groups least able to defend their interests in forfeiture proceedings.” – Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas

From the Heritage Foundation on the Right to the American Civil Liberties Union on the left come urgent calls for civil asset forfeiture law reform.

From the Right

“Civil asset forfeiture is based on a fiction, albeit one of ancient lineage, that property can be guilty of a crime and thereby forfeited to the sovereign regardless of whether any individual is ever charged with (and much less convicted of) a crime related to that property. It is a fiction because things obviously cannot think or act, but there is a laudable goal behind this fiction: the development of a means to deprive criminals of the fruits of their nefarious labor, sometimes in cases where it may be clear that particular property was used in a crime, but where the “kingpin”—be it a drug dealer, fraudster, foreign kleptocrat, or terrorist—is impossible to identify or is outside the United States, and to use some of those funds to compensate the victims of crime… in many instances, what began as a means to a laudable end has become an end in itself.” – John Malcolm, The Heritage Foundation, 20 April 2015

From the Left

“Police abuse of civil asset forfeiture laws has shaken our nation’s conscience. Civil forfeiture allows police to seize — and then keep or sell — any property they allege is involved in a crime. Owners need not ever be arrested or convicted of a crime for their cash, cars, or even real estate to be taken away permanently by the government.

Forfeiture was originally presented as a way to cripple large-scale criminal enterprises by diverting their resources. But today, aided by deeply flawed federal and state laws, many police departments use forfeiture to benefit their bottom lines, making seizures motivated by profit rather than crime-fighting. For people whose property has been seized through civil asset forfeiture, legally regaining such property is notoriously difficult and expensive, with costs sometimes exceeding the value of the property.” – American Civil Liberties Union

Public Opinion Agrees with the Left and the Right

“Eighty-four percent (84%) of Americans oppose civil asset forfeiture–police “taking a person’s money or property that is suspected to have been involved in a drug crime before the person is convicted of a crime,” according to a new Cato Institute/YouGov survey of 2,000 Americans. Only 16% think police ought to be allowed to seize property before a person is convicted.” – The Cato Institute, 13 December 2016

The Opposition: Law Enforcement Agencies

James Mclaughlin, executive director of the Police Chiefs Association said, “We oppose really all changes to asset forfeiture. We always do.”

The governor did not sign into law Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform.

Weighing Cost vs. Benefits of Civil Asset Forfeiture

Greg Glod, a senior policy analyst with the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think tank, said there is no data that shows that seizing assets has put a huge dent in drug cartel operations.

“If you look at how much money has actually been forfeited, it seems like a

COST VS BENEFITS
Loss of Liberty has no benefits

lot, but when you average cash that’s forfeited, it’s generally from $0 to $5,000,” he said. “And overall, it’s only in the hundreds of millions of dollars, and we know how much drug cartel money actually comes through here. So it really has not, from those statistics, done a lot to actually disrupt cartel members and their drug-trafficking organizations.”

Follow the Money

  • District attorneys across Texas in 2016 were in court fighting for more than $55 million in seized cash to be forfeited to the state, according to reports counties submitted to the Attorney General’s office.
  • At the end of 2016, district attorneys statewide had a total balance of more than $36 million in forfeited money, according to reports counties submitted to the Attorney General’s office.

Legislative Actions

The 2017 Texas Legislature took up the issue by proposing bills to eliminate the practice of Civil Asset Forfeiture. State Senator Konni Burton (R-Fort Worth) introduced SB 380 and State Representative Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston) put forward HB 1394 on this matter.

I will work for a constitutional amendment to the U.S. Constitution by way of a Convention of States and an amendment to the Texas Constitution through our 2019 Texas Legislature.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

Running down Rumors in Rockwall

rumors in rockwall.png

The Rumor Mills Grind Away…

From time to time, this is to say on a daily basis, questions about government actions pop up on Facebook and Nextdoor social media websites. Unfortunately, I see them appear in local news media, albeit infrequently.

I find it humorous how one person posts a rumor on social media and as many as a hundred will chime in an opinion. In the end, how does this serve representative – republican – government?

The Cure

There is an almost magical way to extract truths directly from local governments. It’s called the Public Information Act.

In brief, if you submit a written request to any employee of a local government, that agency has ten working days to promptly answer your request IN WRITING if the information is not classified confidential by law. You have a tremendous authority in this regard.

If you have the authority and don’t know it or don’t know how to properly exercise your authority, it is as though you have no authority at all.

Learn from an online video course provided by the Texas Attorney General. At the conclusion of this one hour course, there is a certificate you can receive so don’t hastily close the window.

Read: THE PUBLIC INFORMATION ACT to learn more.

Learn how to use the law via the Texas Attorney General’s online training video: Public Information Act Training.

This training is free and it’s mandatory for all persons engaged in local government, whether elected, employed, or sitting as a volunteer on a government board.

How to best use it

  • Ask questions. Don’t waste time griping. Agencies are not required to do anything more than answer requests for information.
  • If you have a gripe, state your gripe directly to the appropriate elected officials.
  • Ask ONE question per written request.
  • Don’t ask stupid questions. Doing so wastes taxpayer dollars that pay employees to expend time answering stupid questions. And, asking stupid questions will most often result in your personal embarrassment.
  • Recognize that the elected office holders and employees are generally good people who truly want to lawfully and effectively serve you.
  • Address your requests appropriately. For example, don’t ask the County about school tax rates; ask the school district.

City and County Elected Official Want to Hear from You

Rockwall County Commissioners Court

City of Rockwall

Rockwall ISD (Yes, the school district is government)

  • President and Place 7 Trustee Stephanie Adams
  • Place 4 Trustee Jon Bailey
  • Place 2 Trustee Russ Childers
  • Place 1 Trustee Christopher Cuny
  • Place 3 Trustee Linda Mitchell Duran
  • Place 6 Trustee Leigh Plagens
  • Place 5 Trustee Jim White

In the case of the RISD board of trustees, they actually don’t want to hear from you. Nonetheless, the Public Information Act still works. To request information from Rockwall ISD, send your requests to Chief Communications Officer Renae Murphy via her email address renae.murphy@rockwallisd.org or call 972-771-0605 extension 7002. Renae responds quickly and politely to all requests for information.

The County Commissioners Court and the City of Rockwall City Council invite and welcome public commentary at meetings. While you can speak at school board meetings, don’t expect your comments to affect the outcome of board decisions – my opinion.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

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