If you want to honor Brent Taylor, end this generation’s Vietnam

News broke over the weekend that North Ogden Mayor Brent Taylor, an Army National Guard reservist, had been killed in an attack while deployed in Afghanistan. The community lost a well-liked political leader, his family of seven lost a husband and father, and the nation lost yet another military man to a war without end. Indeed, we’ve now been involved in Afghanistan for over 17 years, a slogging and directionless military action whose intended purpose no longer seems clear at all. It has clearly become this generation’s Vietnam, a war…

Boxes

“Smart people are a dime a dozen. What matters is the ability to think different, to think outside the box” – Professor Walter Isaacson   We have a poor habit in this modern world. The more complicated our society becomes, the more we try to place people, things, and ideas into convenient little boxes in order to make sense of our world. With the exponentially increasing complexity and the proliferation of information, it seems almost natural, a type of defense mechanism against self-imposed ignorance. But it is that resultant ignorance…

The Fallout from the Ford/Kavanaugh Hearings

Some takeaways from a very difficult week in Washington DC yesterday regarding Dr. Christine Blasley-Ford and Judge Brett Kavanaugh. 1. There has never been a greater argument for getting rid of the 17th Amendment than what we’ve seen the past few weeks. The body of 100 Senators is supposed to be a legislative body. It is now a body of about 20 who wants to do the people’s business and 80 people who see themselves as future presidents who need to dance for their base of donors. The majority of…

Three Implications from the Omarosa Tapes

Omarosa Manigault Newman, bearing a name that sounds concocted by a pretentious author, started in the spotlight by being the most memorable contestant from Season 1 of NBC’s The Apprentice. She returned for a couple more seasons and has done work here and there for Donald Trump ever since. After his shock election victory, Trump kept Omarosa, giving her a trusted position in the West Wing. She was unceremoniously dismissed last year, and one of her first gigs was appearing on another reality show (Celebrity Big Brother). Master of making…

More Russian ridiculousness

About the same time Peter Strzok was sneering and thumbing his nose at a congressional inquiry, Robert Mueller was preparing the next meaningless step in his “Russian investigation”. We are a year and a half and millions of dollars into this charade. It is becoming clearer as time goes on that there is no evidence linking the Trump campaign to anything, and that the Mueller investigation is simply a pathetic attempt to delegitimize a sitting president through contrived bureaucratic scheming. The latest indictments confirm this ongoing farce. If we recall,…

Protecting Utah’s small businesses against “Big Music”

Now here’s an issue that has me seriously conflicted. On the one hand, I hate background music. I hate it in restaurants; I hate it in supermarkets; I hate it at the dentist’s office. What’s more, I doubt that I am alone. I have yet to have a friend invite me to Olive Garden to listen to the music, and incidentally to pig out on breadsticks. On the other hand, I hate Big Music, the duopoly of ASCAP and BMI that licenses and controls all that background music, and so…

Border Wars

The newest strategy by the left to delegitimize the Trump administration and foment division is to blame Trump for policies on the U.S Border. Of course, every failing policy from past administrations is now Trump’s fault, even when he tries to correct them. The media recently exploded with accounts of “children separated from families at the border”. Cries of inhumanity began to circulate in prime time news. The new reality is peddled as “Racist Trump” or “Nazi Trump” implementing dehumanizing immigration policies at the borders. However, there are several difficulties…

Justice Kennedy divided America

In the span of 30 years on the United States Supreme Court, Justice Anthony Kennedy changed the face of America and, in doing so, created Donald Trump and deepened our political divisions. While Justice Kennedy is receiving great accolades for many important court decisions that he authored, his legacy should be judged by his activism more than by any wisdom he provided. Even after authoring Lawrence and Obergefell, perhaps Justice Kennedy’s greatest effrontery was his 1992 opinion in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, upholding Roe v. Wade, wherein he wrote, “At…

Please, Senators, do not confirm Ron Mortensen

The Trump Administration has placed the name of Utah’s Ron Mortensen before the United States Senate as the administration’s nominee as the Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration – and senators, especially Utah’s senators, should oppose Mortensen’s confirmation. The Bureau of PRM was created to “provide protection, ease suffering, and resolve the plight of persecuted and uprooted people around the world on behalf of the American people….” PRM “provides aid and sustainable solutions for refugees, victims of conflict and stateless people around the world,…