Scott Bradford: Off on a Tangent
Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion

Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion:

Remembering Christ's entry into Jerusalem and the beginning of Holy Week. More…
Politics Onward to Revolution! Is It 2004 All Over Again? The Assault on American Liberty State of the Union Not-Live Blog State of the Union Address Tonight at 9pm
Faith Procuring Religious Freedom for Virginia Judging People in Death The Grand Unification: Science and Faith Creation and the Null Hypothesis When Men Revile You…
Liberty Procuring Religious Freedom for Virginia Onward to Revolution! A Republic in the Balance The Assault on American Liberty We the Jury Find the Defendant…

Procuring Religious Freedom for Virginia

Posted April 1, 1776 3:17pm

On this, the First Day of April 1776, I have received word by secret courier, dispatched from the home of an esteemed colleague of mine located not far to the southeast at Gunston Hall, that he intends to attempt procuring the right of religious freedom for all Virginians.

My colleague has asked to remain un-named until his official capacity is established by the upcoming Fifth Convention of Virginia, but he has stated unequivocally that he intends to draft a VIRGINIA DECLARATION OF RIGHTS for consideration by that body, which shall include and proclaim the essential rights and liberties of all Virginians, including his heretofore limited free exercise of religion and conscience. Although many essential liberties shall be proclaimed by this document, my colleague is aware that this one is of particular interest to this pamphleteer, and I do truly appreciate his kind consideration.

As my countrymen are surely aware, Virginia—though oft’ ahead of her colonial brethren in the protections of the Rights of Man—has heretofore been less accepting of religious freedoms than, as an example, the great republic of Pennsylvania to the north. Most clearly, our State has, in keeping with the now inapplicable laws of Great Britain, outlawed the practice of the Papist religion within her borders. ‘Tis time to remove the practice of religious faith from the binds of civil governance and allow all to practice their faiths freely within our borders, whether Christian or Papist, Hebrew or Mohammedan, without hindrance.

I have been assured by my esteemed colleague, that the declaration of religious liberty portion of the VIRGINIA DECLARATION OF RIGHTS shall read as follows, or similar: “That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator and the manner of discharging it, can be directed by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore, all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity towards each other.”

Onward to Revolution!

Posted April 1, 1776 12:24am

On this, the First Day of April 1776, it is clear that we, the honorable men of Virginia and the other American Colonies, must accept that war for REVOLUTION and INDEPENDENCE is now inevitable. Fighting continues in the northern Colonies between Britain’s once-loyal American subjects under command of General George Washington, and those red-coated soldiers once sworn to their protection but now in enmity against them. The passage of the Prohibitory Act of 1775, news of which arrived on the continent now less than two months ago, finally renders reconciliation utterly impossible.

In this act of high despotism, the Kingdom of Great Britain, under tyrant George III and a sycophantic Parliament unanswerable to the people of these Colonies, has declared war against her own subjects. She has instituted a naval blockade against them, and declares their ships to be enemy vessels. Further, it has come to our attention through reliable correspondence that George III has now enlisted Hessian mercenaries against the Colonies in this struggle. ’Tis an unforgivable outrage, rendering any just ties to these Colonies duly dissolved.

We shall now proceed to the inevitable conclusion of these affairs: a true DECLARATION that we, the united Colonies—no, States!—of America, by right of natural law and liberty, shall now be FREE and INDEPENDENT. We shall no longer answer to the distant authority of an enemy despot and unrepresentative Parliament.

We mustn’t delay any longer in hopes of a reconciliation which shan’t occur. The Virginia Burgesses must authorize her delegates to the CONTINENTAL CONGRESS to petition for the drafting of a formal declaration, to be completed before midsummer, expressing the causes that compel us to separation, and lending support thereto on the bases of natural law and Divine providence. I shall promptly call upon the men of the House of Burgesses, and upon my esteemed colleague the Hon. Patrick Henry, who stands now for election to Governorship of my beloved Virginia, to lend their inestimable support to these efforts.

A Republic in the Balance

Posted March 23, 1776 7:00am

Next week, the United States Supreme Court will hear arguments in Florida v. United States Department of Health and Human Services—a case that will quite possibly be the most important to come before the court in my lifetime. The ruling, which is not expected for several months, will tell us whether or not the United States of America will remain a federal republic, or whether the great experiment is effectively over.

Despite the official name of the case, a total of 26 states—a majority of the union—have joined against the federal government. At stake is whether that federal government has the authority to mandate that all citizens of the United States purchase or obtain health insurance.

Obviously, the answer is ‘no.’ The founders crafted the U.S. Constitution so as to only grant the federal government particular, enumerated authorities (which can be found in Article 1, Section 8). In fact, because the government had a short list of things it could do, many of the document’s authors did not think it necessary to include a Bill of Rights. Why should we need to say that people have a freedom of speech (for example) when the government, limited to the enumerated powers, would be theoretically unable to limit that freedom anyway? Alexander Hamilton explained in Federalist #84: continued… →

WSAB: What Should Apple Buy? (Updated)

Posted March 18, 1776 8:54pm

Apple, Inc. has a lot of money. This probably goes without saying; the maker of Macintosh computers, iPods, iPhones, and iPads is obviously a very successful technology firm. But in the sixteen years since the then-beleaguered company was teetering on bankruptcy, Apple has amassed an unusual pile of cash. Most companies don’t sit on large sums of money, choosing instead to spend all the cash they earn (and sometimes more) on growing and expanding the business. Apple, however, puts it in the bank.

The company carries no debt, and has just a hair under $100 billion in petty cash lying around.

So Apple will be hosting a conference call at 9am ET tomorrow (Monday) to discuss what they will be doing with the money. They have a few options. They can issue a large dividend to their shareholders (along the lines of $107/share), buy back outstanding shares, invest in buying parts of other companies, buy other companies outright, or some combination of the above. Or they can buy $100 billion worth of ice cream. It’s really up to them.

To give you some perspective on just how big $100 billion is: Apple could buy Ford Motor Company, Time Warner, and Northrop Grumman…outright (based on their market cap values as of Friday evening). Who wouldn’t want to see what Apple would do with cars, media, and military hardware? I think the time has come for a user-friendly, iPad controllable Aerial iDrone for use against al-Qaeda militants.

So what do you think? What should Apple buy?

Update 3/19/2012: Apple announced this morning that they plan to begin issuing a quarterly dividend of $2.65/share and initiate a $10 billion stock repurchase plan (buying back outstanding shares). They expect to spend approximately $45 billion over three years with these programs, which would leave about half of their stockpile in-place. Unfortunately, there were no announced plans for ice cream or military hardware.

Subjects: Apple, Business, Technology
Posted in Briefly, Opinion

Justice in Afghanistan

Posted March 16, 1776 7:00am

Imagine that a team of British soldiers is on a joint training mission with U.S. armed forces here in the United States. One of these hypothetical British soldiers leaves the base where they are training, drives into a nearby town, and begins shooting at innocent American citizens as they go about their daily business. He kills 16 men, women, and children. How would we react?

I can tell you one thing: the perpetrator of the violence would not be permitted to leave the United States. We would not accept the British Army airlifting him home and declaring that he’ll face military justice there. No, his crime would have been committed in the United States, under U.S. jurisdiction, and we would insist that he be brought to justice under the U.S. system. It’s quite simple: when you are a guest in a foreign country, even when you are there as part of an active military force, you must obey that country’s laws.

Sadly, a variant of this hypothetical situation played out Sunday in Afghanistan. A yet-unidentified U.S. Army Staff Sargent went on an inexplicable rampage in an Afghan village, killing 16 innocent civilians—nine children and seven adults. And what did we do? We promptly airlifted the perpetrator to Kuwait, and he is expected to be brought back to the U.S. soon to face trial. We’ve told our outraged Afghan brethren not to worry; we’ll make sure he faces justice.

Nonsense. The accused committed a horrific crime as a guest in a foreign country, and that country has the right to detain, try, and punish him for what he has done. The fact that the accused is a U.S. citizen is irrelevant. The fact that he is a U.S. Army soldier is irrelevant. When he went ‘rogue’ and started committing acts of violence outside of his military duties (and clearly outside the agreed-upon rules of engagement), he lost any protection he might otherwise have been entitled to. As an individual American on the streets of Afghanistan, outside of his official duties, he is clearly subject to Afghan legal jurisdiction.

We must immediately return the accused to Afghanistan and turn him over to the Afghan authorities so that he can face justice in the jurisdiction where the crime was committed. We would not accept anything less if the nationalities involved were reversed.

Subjects: Crime, War
Posted in Briefly, Opinion


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The honorable Scott Bradford, Esq. has been writing pamphlets regarding the Present State of American Affairs since 1765. Having been educated by apprecticeship in the law office of the honorable Patrick Henry, Esq., and with the blessings of Almighty God, he serves as one of several legal advisors to the Virginia House of Burgesses in Williamsburg. He warns tirelessly against the danger of faction, and espouses a claim, founded upon the natural rights of man, to the political self-determination of his beloved Virginia, and other oppresed American Colonies of the Kingdom of Great Britain. He contributes a periodical column to the venerable Virginia Gazette, and is a loyal adherant of the Church of England – persistant rumors of his loyalty to the yet outlawed Papist sect are wholly unfounded!

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