A Word Game for You

I have a word game for you. If you succeed, you are entitled to the reward described below the game. The game is this: take the following text below, and interpret it in such a way so that it means: ‘the people may have every single one of their communications monitored and catalogued on gigantic databases with neither warrant, nor probable cause, nor concern for particularity.’

Okay, here is the game’s text:

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

Have you succeeded in your interpretation? Great!

Here is your reward:

You are hired as a federal judge in the United States of America!

Congratulations, and thanks for playing.

Tyrannical Tax Rates

Did you know our country’s [cough cough, nominal, cough cough] corporate tax rate is one of the highest in the industrialized world? This is egregious! We need to cut corporate taxes to stimulate business, so wealth can trickle down under classical supply-side economics — that heralded and long-proven model that has existed for *forty entire years* [cough cough, and has lead to an ever-increasing wealth stratification]. Under this tyrannical tax rate, over 10 percent of our 500 companies with the largest market capitalizations paid the business-killing rate of [cough cough, 0 percent, because of all the Swiss-cheese holes in the code].

It is no wonder we can’t keep business here, under this unfair and stifling policy. We need to lower the corporate tax rate and sign the Trans-Pacific Partnership — another free trade deal, so we can have Taiwan, Vietnam, Mexico, and Malaysia send more jobs here, as has consistently happened with other second- and third-world countries in previous free trade deals. And we also need to cut entitlements [cough cough, a.k.a. insurance policies that citizens paid for], such as Social Security, Veterans’ Benefits, Medicare, and Medicaid, because even with our crushingly onerous corporate tax rate [couch cough, zero percent], we cannot afford to keep giving all these greedy takers steaks and Cadillacs.

The full story:  http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2013/10/23/big-companies-pay-no-taxes/2480281/

No Justice for You

*DISCLAIMER: THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE. It is the author’s personal opinion, and therefore it is as worthless as twice-used toilet tissue.*<Ahem:>

There is a yawning doughnut hole in our civil justice system between the relatively simple, represent-yourself-small-claims courts, which have a claim ceiling of $5,000 (at least, in the jurisdiction where I live), and practical entry to our higher courts, which require — notwithstanding the occasional savvy legal hobbyist capable of avoiding — costly legal representation to navigate. The realities of the necessary outsourcing of procedural know-how, legal research, pleading- and motion-writing, and discovery mean if your claim isn’t substantial — say, over $10,000, and maybe even $15,000 or $20,000 — you will actually *lose* on net, *even if you technically win a judgment.* So if you’re going to be damaged by another human or unnatural person, go big or go home. Otherwise no justice for you.

♥ STERL