Richard "Jay" Edgar
Libertarian Candidate for 4th District US Congress
In addition to this page also see my answers to the vote-smart NPAT questionnaire.
Social security taxes are ruining the chance for a secure retirement for every citizen of the United States. Visit Social Security Reform for my detailed analysis on social security.
I believe that the United States needs to maintain a strong national defense. Our current practice of providing welfare in the form of defense to other countries is an atrocity. We can't find enough soldiers to fight in Iraq, yet we have 320,000 troops stationed around the world in 120 countries. They are not there to provide security to the United States, but to provide free defense for other countries. I think we should.
The 911 Commission Report presents some good and some bad recommendations as well. See my analysis here.
Just 45 days after the September 11th tragedy, congress passed the Police State Act (AKA PATRIOT Act) with very little dissent. This act greatly expanded the powers of the executive branch of the United States and eroded the rights our forefathers have fought hard to secure. The Patriot Act is fraught with problems. Congress most recently attempted to fix some of the Police State Act with an amendment to an appropriations bill for the Justice Department. It would have modified the Police State Act so that the FBI would be prohibited from searching library and book-buying records without probable cause of any crime or intent to commit a crime. Probable cause is not too much to ask. My opponent Christopher Smith voted for the Police State Act and against this amendment.
It was hoped that our legislators would rein in the most egregious parts of the The Police State Act in the Patriot Reauthorization Act. Instead they made things worse. The reauthorization adds a new federal police force. The section 605 of the law reads:
Chris Smith voted for the Reauthorization Act. So much for the Bill of Rights!
My opponent also continually strives to censor speech. Chris Smith was a cosponsor of HR 3717 which raised fines astronomically for "obscene, indecent, and profane" speech.
In May of 2002, Bush signed a $190 Billion Farm bill that was approved by my opponent, Chris Smith. Farm subsidies cause many problems:
According to the Cato Institute, the federal government spends $65 billion per year on programs that provide subsidies to private businesses. Welfare queens included the big 3 automakers, Boeing, Enron, and Archer-Daniels Midland. Not only is this bad for the taxpayer, but it creates an incestuous environment between business and government.
From Cato's recommendations, congress should:
EnvironmentSee my environmental page for details.
In March of 2002, President Bush signed the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act into law. This law makes it illegal for non-profit advocacy groups to mention the name of a candidate within 60 days of an election.
I find the idea of the government regulating speech repugnant. Current regulation makes anonymous speech illegal. Anonymous speech was core to the founding of our nation with the publication of the Federalist Papers.
Other campaign reforms that congress should consider in the name of fairness to all include.
I'm the only candidate in this congressional race who supports the second amendment of the constitution. The incumbent Chris Smith continually votes to restrict our second amendment rights. He was recently given a grade of F by the Gun Owners Association. While the Democrat challenger has also stated her opposition to the second amendment.
I fully support our right to self defense, in fact I believe in the entire bill of rights, and if elected will work to restore these rights to the American people.
Gun control will only make us less secure. Thomas Jefferson has stated:
"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. "
In 1775 the British army under the command of Lt. Col. Francis Smith attempted to confiscate the arms of colonists. This action was met with rebellion, leading to the Revolutionary War. Gun control desecrates the memory of the many veterans who fought for our right to carry arms.
"No free government was ever founded, or ever preserved its liberty, without uniting the characters of citizen and soldier in those destined for the defense of the State. Such are a well regulated Militia, composed of the freeholders, citizen, and husbandman; who take up arms to preserve their property, as individuals, and their rights as freemen."
Medicare is fraught with problems. The 2003 Medicare Act, which expands Medicare to cover pharmaceuticals, will only make these problems worse. Among these problems are:
HR 3767 attempts to correct the lack of market controls in the fixing of drug prices. It however is an inadequate solution to the problem. A better solution would be to do away with the enormously complex Medicare systems and instead enact a Direct Contribution (DC) system. In such a system the taxpayer will provide a subsidy to be used to purchase healthcare insurance from a traditional insurer. This will protect the taxpayer from expensive ever-expanding entitlement programs. It will stimulate market competition between insurers, while driving down costs for the consumers.
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