Thursday, July 31, 2014

FAIR Legislation We Should All Support--Rand Paul's Theft Protection Plan

In this world of Obama liberalism we hear the word "fair" so many times that most of us have stopped listening.  The definition of "fair" has come to mean the same to everyone, for everyone, regardless of effort or output.  But liberty-minded Kentucky Senator Rand Paul has introduced a new "FAIR" plan that all of us should support--from all political spectrums and sectors of the nation.  FAIR in this case is an acronym for Fifth Amendment Integrity Restoration, but the act is also being called the "theft protection" act.  Paul's legislation is aimed at restoring our constitutional fifth amendment protections against unreasonable confiscation of property without due process.

Most of us are familiar with the fifth amendment and the legal phrase, "pleading the fifth." But the fifth  amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees a lot more than just that we can't be forced to testify against ourselves.  The amendment reads as follows:

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment of indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Sounds pretty clear cut, right?  For over two centuries, this paragraph has protected Americans from forfeiting their property to the government without due process of the law. Increasingly, though, police departments are using federal RICO laws to strip citizens of their private property without any due process and without any clear evidence of wrong doing. Rand Paul has been featuring a few stories of egregious abuses by law enforcement who seized property without cause:
1.  A 64 year old Texas woman with NO criminal record was accused of being a drug dealer after being discovered with cash in her car during a traffic stop by the policeThe money came from the sale of land, but the police confiscated it anyway, and she had to sue in federal court to get it back.

2.  Automobile owners in New York City had their vehicles confiscated after they were discovered giving rides to friends.  They were accused of operating an illegal taxi service.

3. A Nebraska man, Emiliano Gonzalez, who was pulled over for speeding had $124,000 in cash seized from a cooler he was carrying.  Gonzalez said that the money was going to be used to purchase a refrigerated truck for his produce business.  Police did not believe him and accused him of being a drug dealer though they never had evidence to support that claim. Courts initially ruled that the government must return the money, but in 2006 a federal judge ruled that the police could keep the money because of a "preponderance of evidence."  Though the government never proved its case against Gonzalez, the judge basically said they didn't have to--the suspicion of wrongdoing was enough.

Property forfeiture rules are based on the concept that property can be guilty of committing a crime and therefore can be seized.  Law enforcement does not have to prove illegal activity--they merely have to show that they are suspicious that this activity has occurred, and they can basically take what they want and, in most cases, keep it.  Laws that were originally written to rein in organized crime decades ago are now being turn on ordinary citizens to deprive them of their property without so much as a hearing.

For anyone out there who actually thinks this is a good idea, let me remind you that our constitutional protections of life, liberty and property are an anomaly around the world.  America has long been the exception, not the rule.  In countries where law enforcement is permitted this kind of heavy-handed abuse of the populace, crime does not drop.  In fact, it increases because the citizenry is afraid to call the police, fearing that the cops will do worse things to them than the criminals will.

I spent nearly all of my life living on the Mexican border in El Paso, Texas, and I witnessed first hand what it means to live in a society where the police are feared and vilified.  I experienced this up close and personal a few years ago when a real estate agent I knew was being stalked.  Lorena (not her real name) was receiving harassing and threatening phone calls at her home late at night and she became terrified.  I told her that she had to call the police and she became even more terrified.  Lorena's fear had nothing to do with her visa status--she and her husband and all of her adult children were U.S. citizens.  Rather, she feared the police because she was born into a society where calling the police routinely resulted in robbery, sexual assault or some other abuse.  The message on the border was clear--no matter what happens to you NEVER involve the police; they will make whatever problem you have much worse.

What has made the U.S. exceptional has been, in part, a system of clearly written and evenly enforced laws by trained law enforcement who are held accountable for their actions.  No system is perfect, but we prosecute our law enforcement when they are discovered breaking the law.  Citizens are "innocent until proven guilty."  The Constitution protects life, liberty and PROPERTY and those protections provide a framework in which we can prosper as a society.

Unfortunately, the forfeiture laws and practices that are springing up around America threaten to morph us into a society very much like Mexico, where the police are feared, where property is subject to confiscation and where the only rights belong to the government.  That is why Paul's legislation is so important.  We need to close the loopholes and make property forfeiture difficult and expensive for the government.  We need to restore the citizens' trust in government by making government accountable for its actions.  And we need to do it now, before we begin to see generations of Americans grow up who expect government to be corrupt and abusive.  When that happens, we have already lost the battle for individual liberty and constitutional rights.

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me a Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Elizabeth Warren, 11 Commandments of Progressivism and False Flags

Last week Elizabeth Warren gave a speech outlining the 11 Commandments of Progressives.  Never mind that Western Civilization has flourished for roughly six thousand years with just 10 Commandments bestowed on us by God.  Like all true liberals, Warren believes she knows more than the Creator of the Universe and is therefore entitled to rewrite the rules to fit her agenda.

Both Breitbart and The Blaze have done excellent commentary on the insanity that is her speech.  I won't regurgitate those commentaries here, but I do recommend that you check them out for yourselves.  Breitbart analyzes what her eleven commandments really mean in the real world, while The Blaze's Buck Sexton accurately describes Warren as a "third rate intellectual with first rate, though fraudulent credentials."

Warren's eleven commandments constitute more of the patronizing drivel that we have come to expect from the world of Obama.  Of course, she begins with commandment number 1:  Liberals believe that Wall Street needs stronger rules and tougher enforcement and we are willing to fight for it.  Breitbart accurately challenges that on the grounds that Wall Street is really the only sector of the society that has actually recovered fully from the economic meltdown of the past seven years.  It is true that Dodd Frank provides permanent safety nets for big banks.  But at the end of the day, Dodd Frank is not about writing rules at all--Dodd Frank is really about regulation through enforcement rather than through clear cut rules.  Because of this policy, small companies can be fined and harassed into bankruptcy for violating rules they didn't know they were violating.  This is the regulatory environment Warren promised to create when she was interim acting director of the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  I wrote about this in my first post about Warren, Elizabeth I. She argued that she did not want an agency with clear cut rules, because evil corporations get around rules by hiring attorneys who interpret them.  Instead, the agency she helped to craft regulates by determining guilt or innocence through enforcement actions--a situation which allows the government to pick the winners and the losers every time.  We see this most dramatically in the CFPB's "guidance" last week regarding "mini-correspondents"--a type of lending entity that is a hybrid of a mortgage bank and a mortgage broker.  The CFPB warned that if the agency determines that a "mini-correspondent" does not really meet the very vague guidelines, the agency will revoke its status retroactively, which would leave the company open to numerous enforcement actions for loans closed while it had correspondent status.  Those transactions would immediately become violations of the law.  BUT, the CFPB still will not issue clear rules--they know misrepresentation when they see it.

My biggest problem with Warren and all those modern day "progressives" like her is not that she is a liberal. If Warren were an honest liberal, I would disagree with her vehemently, but I could respect her if she stuck to her principles.  I disagree vehemently with Allen Dershowitz on many issues, but I have come to respect him in many ways because Dershowitz is exactly who he claims to be.  He took on Republicans for violating the rule of law, and he is not any easier on Obama.  He stood for Hobby Lobby's right to run their business the way they wanted although he is openly and adamantly pro-abortion.  He stands against Obama's abuses of the law just as he stood against Nixon's.  Dershowitz is not a hypocrite, so though I do believe he is very wrong on many issues, I respect his commitment to his ideals.

Warren, however, is a disingenuous hypocrite.  This shrill, supposed defender of consumers played an instrumental role in creating an agency that continues to essentially cut off access to financing for the American middle class. (As an example, look at JP Morgan Chase's statements this week about exiting the FHA market while ramping up their commitment to jumbo mortgage loans for their wealthy clients.)  She hates the wealth accumulated through capitalism and yet headed an agency that has the highest payrolls in the federal government--agents of the CFPB commonly earn over six figures and since the agency has the ability to appropriate its own budget they can vote themselves raises.  She vows to overturn Hobby Lobby and yet never considers that the Green family made its money through hard work, free enterprise and ingenuity while her greatest achievement is the creation of a huge agency that took all of its money from American taxpayers--people like the Greens--and has used to it to destroy the free enterprise system.

Even her resume is a lie.  She claimed to be Native American to gain access to schools and opportunities that would not have been afforded to a shrewish white woman, and by doing so took advantage of the very people she claims to care about.  (For every spot filled by some liar like Warren there is a REAL Native American who did not gain access.)

Now we are hearing rumors that she is considering a presidential run and that she is in fact Obama's top pick to succeed him because she will continue on in his footsteps.  I have to believe that this is also a lie.  Warren may play well to the extreme leftist base, but she has nothing to offer in a general election.  She is unattractive, angry and hard left of center--a losing combination for the first potential woman president in an election where the ultimate outcome will be determined, as it always is, by male voters.  I can only believe that she is being used (without her knowledge perhaps) as a false flag by Democrats who are hoping to be able to trot out another dark horse candidate who will seem moderate by comparison. 

Maybe, instead of writing her own, Warren needs to try reading and memorizing the original ten commandments--the ones that allowed us to build the greatest nation in the history of the world.  
She might want to pay special attention to the one about "thou shalt not lie."

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me A Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at

Friday, July 18, 2014

Why, as an Evangelical Christian, I Continue to Stand with Israel

In the summer of 1997, my two youngest brothers were attending seminars at BYU in order to earn their undergraduate degrees. I took a two week vacation from my job and went to Provo, Utah, to be with them and with my mother during that time. Stefan and Judah spent every day in school from morning till late afternoon, and so Mother and I had to find ways to entertain ourselves during those hours.

During that two week period, BYU was hosting an exhibit of the artifacts from Masada, which was on special loan to the campus via the BYU Jerusalem Cultural Center. The exhibit traveled under guard with posted signs that the 1997 trip was the first time that these artifacts had ever been in the United States.

As I went through the exhibit, I was amazed. We saw portions of the book of Isaiah contained in the Dead Sea Scrolls, pottery from the Holy Land, and artifacts which had been excavated from the fortress at Masada, where the last Jewish rebellion against the Roman government occurred about 66 A.D. The residents of Masada had lived in the fortress for five years, before they finally committed suicide to avoid capture and execution by the Roman army.

Cassette tape recorders were provided to each visitor so that we could tour the displays while listening to an explanation of each item that we saw. We saw replicas of Herod's palace and the last temple, artifacts left by the Roman soldiers, and shards of pottery and makeup brushes and brass mirrors left by the women who had lived at the fortress. When we came to a collection of very small clay lamps which were about the size of the palm of an adult hand, Mother motioned to me to turn off my tape recorder. "Look," she pointed. "This explains the parable that Jesus told about the ten virgins--five had enough oil for their lamps and the other five did not. This explains why the five with the oil could not share theirs with the others." I looked more closely at the lamps and saw what she meant--each little lamp was made like a nightlight with only enough supply of oil for one night. When we had finished talking I clicked my cassette recorder back on to hear the narrator explain, "These oil lamps would have been the ones referenced in the parable of the ten virgins."

Of all of the experiences I have enjoyed over the course of my life, seeing the artifacts from Masada is in the top 5. The exhibit was a profound reminder that the nation of Israel was completely gone for almost 2000 years. As the child of parents who were in the Jesus movement, I grew up in a house where the star of David was prominently featured, and I learned from my earliest youth that the Jewish people are precious to God. To see the belongings of these people who were exterminated and scattered by the Romans was a profound reminder of the struggles of the Jewish people throughout history and particularly the long struggles of Israel as a nation to maintain its sovereignty.

As evangelicals, we believe that Israel is a nation that has a special and unique history and an important future. We believe that the promise of God in Genesis to Abraham, "I will bless those who bless you and I will curse those who curse you and the entire world will be blessed because of you," extends to the entire nation of Israel. We also agree with Benjamin Netanyahu that the reestablishment of the nation of Israel May 16, 1948 was a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy and that it was God who re-established this nation as an independent state. Therefore, we reject statements such as the one made a few years ago by Henry Kissinger that within ten years the nation of Israel will cease to exist. We stand against Iran's anti-Israel rhetoric not only because it is racist and genocidal but also because it stands against the purposes of God.

Yet, today, I see so many even in the evangelical community who are faltering in their support for the nation of Israel.  In church on Sunday, the pastor asked us to "pray for the peace of Jerusalem" and went on to say that in times like these it is hard to tell "the good guys from the bad guys."  Not so!  There is no moral equivalency between a nation that fights in self-defense and distributes leaflets urging Palestinians to evacuate--as the IDF did this week before widening the assault on Gaza--versus a nation that begins conflict for the sole purpose of ethnic genocide.  When the Palestinian teen was killed in Israel, the Israelis investigated, discovered the identities of the murderers and began prosecution.  There was no such investigation from the Palestinian side when the three Israeli teenagers were murdered.  There is no moral equivalency--there is a clear choice between a jihadist blueprint for systematic murder and terror and a free democratic nation attempting to live in peace though surrounded by enemies.  Yet, as the church which is supposed to hold high the truth of God, we seem determined to abandon one of the most prominent truths of the both the Old and New Testament--the fact that God Himself established Israel and set her boundaries.

As the conflict continues between Israel and Gaza, we pray especially for the peace and safety of Israel.  We pray that God will guide their military efforts and protect this nation which is so dear to His heart.  And we pray for a speedy end to this conflict and for God to intercede in this situation so that the region can live in safety and so that Israel's neighbors will come to respect her national sovereignty and right to exist.

Abraham Lincoln said, "My concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God's side, for God is always right." When we stand with the nation of Israel in friendship and military support, we are on God's side.  That's why, today, I stand with Israel.

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me A Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Freedom Prayer

This week, Christian leaders across America have asked  millions of Christians all across this country to pray for America. Today, as we celebrate our independence, we need to remember that our freedom is a gift from God and it is only through returning to Him that we will be allowed to hold on to it. In that spirit, today I repost The Freedom Prayer:

“Lord we come to You tonight to ask for Your forgiveness. The Bible promises that when we seek You, we will find You, if we search with all our hearts.

"Lord we confess that we have not followed Your commands. We have not loved You with our whole hearts--we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We have not stood for the truth of Your Gospel. We have sat by and said nothing when Your name was blasphemed and mocked. We did not take a stand when we saw Your laws despised.

“We know that many times we ourselves have been among the worst offenders. We have lived sinful lives that are contrary to the word of God. Like Esau, we have traded away our birthright for a little convenience; we have despised this incredible gift of freedom that You provided for us and allowed all of the liberty that our country offered to be trampled down. We have forgotten the words of King David who said that it is better to fall into the hands of God than to be at the mercy of men, and so we now find ourselves living under the rule of a cruel and despotic government who has stolen everything from us and shows us no mercy.

“We know that everything that is happening to us is a result of our bad choices, both individually and as a nation. You gave us the gift of being born into a free nation—the greatest nation the world has ever seen. You gave us a form of government unlike any other that had ever been known by any other people, and we did not value it enough to defend it.

“For all of these things, Lord, we ask Your forgiveness. We pray tonight that You will change our hearts so that each of us will begin to love what You love, to hate what You hate and to want what You want. We ask You to save our nation, for we know that the Bible teaches that salvation belongs to our God—no political party, no ideology, no government can save us. If we don’t find salvation in You, we won’t find it at all.

“Please turn Your face to us again, and give us back our freedom, and restore our country so that we can truly be one nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all. We ask all these things in the name of Your son, Jesus. Amen.”

Alexandra Swann's novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The World's Most Presumptuous Job

As we celebrate our freedom this week, we need to always keep foremost in our minds that there are many who long to strip of us those freedoms.  I was reminded of that again today as I read a LinkedIn article about the man with the most "impossible job in the world."  That man, according to LinkedIn, is Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary General of the UN.  As LinkedIn explains, he is a politician with no constituents who presides over 40,000 employees.  What LinkedIn did not say, is that the UN SG is basically the world's unelected paper dictator--spouting edicts and trying to change national laws and traditions without a "smidgen" of authority to do so.  "Impossible"--unfortunately not.  Maybe it should be better classified as the world's most presumptuous job..

Ban Ki-Moon's goals for his final two years as Secretary General include getting the world to work together to solve the problem of global climate change and creating gender parity between men and women.  He is working on the gender parity issue right there at the UN by promoting women. 

I have written extensively over the last two years about the UN campaign to get the developed nations of the world (mainly the U.S.) to embrace a Spartan, austere lifestyle which will bring us all into line with Agenda 21, the United Nation's environmental policy document adopted in 1992. Agenda 21 calls abolition of private property, single family home ownership and private transportation in favor of densely packed public housing, public transportation and collective ownership.  In the US. this is being heavily marketed to Americans using the buzz words "sustainability" "green" and "Smart".  Virtually every new program and initiative today features something "green".  No one is safe.  I was watching "Dora the Explorer" a few days ago with my six year old nephew and I was horrified to see that the entire episode was devoted to Dora and friends winning first place at the science fair with their green energy project.

In 2014, we are starting to feel the practical impacts of Agenda 21.  Obama's new EPA regulations will double electric rates by 2014.  These higher rates are essential to implementing Agenda 21 in the U.S.  When electric rates skyrocket, Americans will be more inclined to move into the small, densely packed housing that is needed for a sustainable future  With the cancellation of the Keystone Pipeline project, we will see higher gas prices.  High gas prices are also essential to the UN's goals.  Al Gore has publicly complained that Americans won't change their driving habits until gasoline is at least $6.00 a gallon.   No wonder the president would not authorize Keystone XL.

But wait--there's more.  The UN wants to stop "over-consumption of food" and actually devotes days of the year to encouraging people to eat less.  This initiative is the true basis of many of the First Lady's anti-obesity programs.  I wrote about how this will impact us in The Real Hunger Games.

This September, the UN will host a global climate change summit in New York City.  Ban Ki Moon sees this crusade to massively expand poverty and reduce our standard of living to that of a third world nation as his mission--his primary job.  Daniel Roth writes in LinkedIn, "The United Nations' goal is to make this whole world sustainable in social, economic and environmental ways."

Actually, Ban Ki Moon should crack open a history book.  The role of the UN after World War II was to prevent another World War.  That was the sole reason that this organization was established after the end of the Second World War--not to tell us how to live, where to live, what to eat or what to consume.  Looking back at the last  69 years I would say that they have basically done a dismal job.

The day after tomorrow we celebrate America's freedom.  Ban Ki-Moon's aggressive UN devoted to promoting climate change agendas is one of the greatest threats to freedom that our world has seen.  Let all patriots take note.
If you want to learn more about the United Nations' initiative Agenda 21, and what it could mean to the future and prosperity of our nation, watch this video:

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me a Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Hobby Lobby, Religious Freedom and the Fourth of July

The Hobby Lobby victory yesterday could not have been more appropriately timed.  On the last day of June, in a week that will end on Friday with the Fourth of July, the Green family learned that the federal government cannot violate their religious beliefs by forcing them to provide abortifacent contraceptives to their employees.  The victory was a victory for all people who value freedom, faith and conscience--it was the triumph of individual liberty over the collectivist machine that tells us what we can think, believe, value and promote.

As I tweeted yesterday, the Hobby Lobby victory would not have been possible in the first place if one family, the Green family of Oklahoma, had not been willing to take a stand for their personal convictions and fight an expensive and drawn out legal battle to defend their individual liberties.  As I tweeted yesterday, in doing so, they risked everything.  One liberal Twitter troll smirked in reply, "What exactly did they risk?"  Well, it's very simple, Mr. Troll.  The Green family risked their company.  They risked decades of work and sacrifice.  They risked annual fines of $475 million for refusing to comply with the mandate which would have become due and payable if SCOTUS had ruled against them.  They built a crafts business that has become a household name and for many a beloved shopping experience, and they risked closing the doors of that business so that they could take a stand on principle.  It would have been so much easier, so much cheaper, so much safer, to say, "It's the law.  There's nothing we can do.  We don't encourage people to get abortions.  We don't have abortions ourselves. But we can't fight this--the risk is just too great."  If they had taken that stance, today we would not be celebrating a huge affirmation of our fundamental principle of religious freedom.

As I wrote last year, I have never been a Hobby Lobby shopper, until very recently.  There was a Hobby Lobby store located reasonably close to my former office in El Paso, but I never went there.  I did not object to Hobby Lobby--I just never thought about them at all.  Then last year as we saw them in the thick of this battle to defend freedom, I promised myself that I would buy my holiday candles from them in 2013 and that I would continue to purchase my holiday candles every year that they remain open. As I wrote last year, it was an exceedingly small purchase, but the money I spent on candles went to them rather than elsewhere.  Now that I live in the Dallas Metroplex there are Hobby Lobby stores everywhere, including one close to my new home and my new office.  Every time I have passed the store in the last two months, I have remembered my commitment to purchase my candles from Hobby Lobby, and I have wondered whether the stores would still be open this fall.  Now I have my answer, and the Greens have my business, small or large, for as long as they remain open and committed to traditional, faith-based values.  It is the least I can do.

That this victory should come at the Fourth of July is significant.  When the 13 colonies first rebelled against Great Britain, they did so at great risk.  Taxation without representation was only one abuse by the British government.  The soldiers were stationed in the public square in Boston and their commanding officers frequently administered public floggings for small infractions.  Soldiers could be quartered in private homes without the consent of a home owner.  Printing presses that printed articles speaking against the crown or in opposition to British policies were routinely destroyed.  And yet, the penalty for insurrection was confiscation of property and death.  It would have been so much easier for the colonists to say, "There's nothing we can do.  The British empire is the most powerful government in the world.  We don't have the resources to win. We don't have the training; we don't have the army.  Whatever happens to us, we just have to endure.  We can't fight this--the risk is too great."  If they had taken that stance we would not have the Constitution or the Bill of Rights which guarantees Americans the very freedoms that had been trampled by Great Britain.  We would not have the United States of America or 1776.  We would not be celebrating our Independence Day--the Fourth of July.

Ronald Reagan famously said that freedom is never more than one generation from extinction.  We didn't inherit it from our parents and we don't pass it on in our bloodstream to our children.  Every generation must defend the attacks on freedom.  Defense of freedom always brings great risk.  It is always easier to say, "There's nothing we can do."  But the Green family reminds us that today, just as in 1776, when we stand up for freedom we can win--even if the odds against us seem tremendous.  If all that is needed for evil to prosper is for good people to do nothing, the converse is also true:  Evil is vanquished when good people stand against it.

Happy Fourth of July.   

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me a Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her novel, The Planner, about an out of control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21, is available on Kindle and in paperback. For more information, visit her website at