Sunday, August 18, 2019

How to Simplify and Streamline the United States Code

     The following is a set of recommendations regarding how to best reorganize the U.S. Code. The U.S. Code currently contains 48 titles; Title 6 and Title 34 have been removed and are no longer active. A list of the sections of the U.S. Code is available at the following link:

     I have made these recommendations as a way to: 1) decrease the number of titles in the Code; 2) simplify the law in general; 3) remove eight titles of the U.S. Code, thus transferring those duties to the states or to the people, and restoring the set of federal powers to within (or closer to) the confines established in the Enumerated Powers; 4) re-organize the Code in a manner which flows more logically; and 5) re-structure the Code in a way that reflects the order of federal authorities listed in the Enumerated Powers, in the order in which they appear.

     My hope is that these recommendations could help guide federal legislative policy, going forward, regarding the continuation of a federal government power shrinking policy. For example, if ever a law were to be passed which would provide that all proposed federal laws must contain a specific explanation of why they are constitutional – which I hope would include which passage in the Constitution authorizes federal power in that policy area – then I hope that the following recommendations help set up the order in which federal authorities appear in the Enumerated Powers as a sort of “backbone” upon which a new re-ordering of the titles of the U.S. Code can be built.
     From that point, those seeking to reduce the size and scope of the federal government, should compare the Enumerated Powers (and the main enabling powers in the Constitution) side by side with the list of 30 titles found at the end of this article, determine whether the Enumerated Powers justify the exercise of federal power in those policy areas, and use their findings to determine which fields of federal purview should be eliminated next. My first recommendation would be to look at which powers the government has under “public health” (in Title 42: The Public Health and Welfare), since health is not specifically mentioned in the Constitution, but welfare is.
     I also hope that this article will help educate the populace as to precisely where in our immense federal code of law, some of the laws we like and don't like, can be found. If the following 31 proposals can ever be passed into law, then I hope that that popular education will become even easier, given the new simplification and streamlining of the Code which I have proposed.
     Here are my proposals about how to reform the order of titles in the U.S. Code:

Proposal #1. Keep Title 1 where it is.
Proposal #2. Make Title 4 into Title 2.
Proposal #3. Make Title 36 into Title 3.
Proposal #4. Make Title 2 into Title 4.
Proposal #5. Make Title 3 into Title 5.
Proposal #6. Make Title 28 into Title 6.
Proposal #7. Make Title 9 into Title 7.
Proposal #8. Make Title 5 into Title 8.
Proposal #9. Make Title 41 into Title 9.
Proposal #10. Make Title 13 into Title 10. Proposal #11. Make Title 42 into Title 11. Proposal #12. Make Title 26 into Title 12.
Proposal #13. Make Title 19 into Title 13.
Proposal #14. Combine Titles 11 and 12 into a single title; Title 14.
Proposal #15. Make Title 15 into Title 15.
Proposal #16. Make Title 22 into Title 16.
Proposal #17. Make Title 25 into Title 17.
Proposal #18. Make Title 31 into Title 18.
Proposal #19. Make Title 39 into Title 19.
Proposal #20. Make Title 23 into Title 20.
Proposal #21. Make Title 49 into Title 21. Proposal #22. Combine Titles 17 and 35 into a single title; Title 22.
Proposal #23. Make Title 18 into Title 23.
Proposal #24. Make Title 10 into Title 24.
Proposal #25. Make Title 14 into Title 25.
Proposal #26. Make Title 32 into Title 26.
Proposal #27. Make Title 33 into Title 27.
Proposal #28. Combine Titles 37 and 38 into a single title; Title 28.
Proposal #29. Make Title 40 into Title 29.
Proposal #30. Make Title 43 into Title 30.
Proposal #31. Eliminate Titles 16, 20, 21, 24, 29, 30, 45, and 47.

     Proposal #31 would eliminate eight titles of the U.S. Code, thus “devolving” (or returning) those policy areas to the states or to the people, where they rightfully belong.

     Those policy areas are, respectively: Conservation (Title 16), Education (Title 20), Food and Drugs (Title 21), Hospitals and Asylums (Title 24), Labor (Title 29), Mineral Lands and Mining (Title 30), Railroads (Title 25). and Telegraphs, Telephones, and Radiotelegraphs (Title 47).

     Proposals #1-30 would cause the now 50- (or 48-) title U.S. Code to have only 30 titles, causing the list of titles to appear the way it does below:

(Arguably Authorized Under Various Basic Enabling Clauses of Government)
     Title 1. General Provisions
     Title 2. Flag and Seal, Seat of Government, and the States
     Title 3. Patriotic Societies and Observances
     Title 4. The Congress
     Title 5. The President
     Title 6. Judiciary and Judicial Procedure
     Title 7. Arbitration
     Title 8. Government Organization and Employees

     Title 9. Public Contracts
     Title 10. Census

(Arguably Authorized Under Article 1 Section 8 Clauses 1-3)
     Title 11. The Public Health and Welfare
     Title 12. Internal Revenue Code
     Title 13. Customs Duties
     Title 14. Bankruptcy, Banks, and Banking
     Title 15. Commerce and Trade
     Title 16. Foreign Relations and Intercourse
     Title 17. Indians
     Title 18. Money and Finance

(Arguably Authorized Under Article 1 Section 8 Clause 7)
     Title 19. Postal Service
     Title 20. Highways
     Title 21. Transportation

(Arguably Authorized Under Article 1 Section 8 Clause 8)
     Title 22. Copyrights and Patents

(Arguably Authorized Under Article I Section 8 Clause 10)
     Title 23. Crimes and Criminal Procedures

(Arguably Authorized Under Article I Section 8 Clauses 11 through 16)
     Title 24. Armed Forces
     Title 25. Coast Guard
     Title 26. National Guard
     Title 27. Navigation and Navigable Waters
     Title 28. Pay and Allowances of Uniformed Services, and Veterans' Benefits

(Arguably Authorized Under Article I Section 8 Clause 17)
     Title 29. Public Buildings, Property, and Works
     Title 30. Public Lands

Written on August 18th, 2019
Published on August 18
th, 2019

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Why Some Believe Anastasia Survived, and Other Strange Facts About the Romanovs and Rasputin

Table of Contents

I. Introduction
II. Historical Inaccuracies in the Animated Film and Musical
III. Strange Facts About Rasputin and the Romanovs
IV. Tracking-Down Anastasia's Remains
V. Conclusion
VI. Sources


I. Introduction

     On Saturday, August 3rd, 2019, I visited the Overture Center in Madison, Wisconsin, to see the musical Anastasia. The musical tells a fictionalized account of the life of Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna Romanov of Russia (1901-1918), and takes place mostly after the princess's death (i.e., the late 1920s).
     More details about the musical can be accessed at the following websites:
     Just like the 1997 animated film from Fox Studios on which it was based (also called Anastasia), the musical blends Anastasia's real-life story with the accounts of alleged "impostors" who claimed to be Anastasia, and claimed that she survived the assassination of Tsar Nicholas II's family on July 17th, 1918. The most notable of such "impostors" was Anna Anderson (1896-1984), who was evidently an escaped Polish mental patient, real name Franziska Schanzkowska.
     Unfortunately, the musical Anastasia - just like the Fox cartoon which inspired it and its new songs - omits the character Rasputin completely. Gone from the musical are the real-life "mad monk" Grigori Rasputin (1869-1916); his fictional bat sidekick Bartok (voiced by Hank Azaria in the 1997 film); the terror-inducing magick spells they cast together; and the Rasputin character's haunting song "In the Dark of the Night". No Rasputin, no Bartok, and no mention of occult spirituality whatsoever.
     Of course, the audience should have no reason to expect that this Anastasia musical - which is geared mostly towards children and their parents - would continue to include Rasputin, with his terrifying image and piercing stare. It would give children nightmares.
     Although the audience should appreciate that the new musical prominently includes mention of the Soviet Communist regime which took over Russia after the Tsar was forced to abdicate, something was certainly lost from the story, in replacing Rasputin as the main villain, with a Soviet officer named Gleb. What was lost, in leaving Rasputin out, was some of the historical accuracy of the story.
     But once again, the audience should have no reason to expect that this musical be perfectly historically accurate, based (as it were) on an admittedly fictionalized account of Anastasia's life, blended with the life stories of impostors. However, the fact that the Anastasia story, as represented in popular culture, is getting less and less historically accurate as the years go on, presents us with an opportunity to set the records straight about Rasputin, Anastasia, her father the Tsar, and the circumstances surrounding their deaths.
     In this article, I will explain why some people still believe that Anastasia could have survived the assassination attempt of July 1918, by examining the facts surrounding the whereabouts of the remains of Anastasia and her sisters. I will also explain which historical facts the 1997 Anastasia animated film got wrong; and I will additionally note several facts about Rasputin and the Romanovs which most accounts - historical and fictional alike - omit from the story.

II. Historical Inaccuracies in the Animated Film and Musical

     It should go without saying that Rasputin didn't have a bat sidekick, as he did in the 1997 Fox animated film Anastasia. But more importantly, the first several minutes of the 1997 film contain several inaccuracies which conflict with the historical facts surrounding how and when the Romanov dynasty came to be replaced by the Soviet Communist regime of Vladimir Lenin (Ulyanov).
     The film begins in 1916 at a grand ball, wherein the Romanov dynasty is celebrating 300 years on the throne. However, the Romanov dynasty actually celebrated its 300-year anniversary, not in 1916, but in February 1913, three years earlier. The 1997 film placed that ball in 1916 in order to get the event closer to the death of Rasputin, and closer to the date when the Tsar was forced to abdicate the throne (March 15th, 1917). This was likely done in order to condense the plot, and to prevent the film from being too long.
     The 1997 film also shows the entire Romanov family being chased out of the imperial palace (called Tsarskoye Selo) after Rasputin curses Nicholas's family in an act of revenge for banishing him from the palace. Rasputin is shown placing a curse on the Romanov line, and hordes of Russian civilians are shown storming the palace. Next, the whole family - Anastasia, her grandmother, and the rest - are forced to flee Tsarskoye Selo, with Anastasia's paternal grandmother (the Empress Dowager Marie Feodorovna) telling Anastasia that they will meet again in Paris.
     Nothing about the preceding paragraph could be further from the truth; because: 1) Rasputin did not curse the family; 2) Romanov rule was not replaced by Communist rule anywhere near as quickly, nor directly, as portrayed in the film; and 3) Russians never stormed the royal family's palace.

     First of all, Rasputin did not place a "curse" on Tsar Nicholas II and his family and line. The idea that Rasputin placed a curse on the family, comes from the fact that Rasputin wrote a letter to Tsarina Alix (Alexandra, the Tsar's wife) in which Rasputin predicted that he would be murdered. That letter read in part, "if it was your relations who have wrought my death, then none of your children will remain alive for more than two years". An alternate translation of the letter reads, "If I am killed by common men, you and your children will rule Russia for centuries to come; if I am killed by one of your stock, you and your family will be killed by the Russian people!" While this could be interpreted as a warning to the family that they urge each other not to kill him, there is no historical evidence which suggests Rasputin intended this as a curse rather than merely a prediction. Additionally, Rasputin was correct; his assassin was a Romanov prince (Felix Youssoupov, also spelled Yusupov), and the Romanovs were assassinated on July 17th, 1918, just over a year and a half after the death of Rasputin (on December 30th, 1916).

     Second, the Romanovs were not kicked out of the palace by Russian civilians. As explained above, Tsar Nicholas (1868-1918) was forced to abdicate on March 15th, 1917; while Lenin did not take power until the day after the October Revolution (on November 7th, 1917, in the New Style Gregorian calendar), several months later. After the Tsar's abdication, and before Lenin took power on November 8th (as Chairman of the Councils of People's Commissars of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic), Alexander Kerensky held the reins of power. From July to October 1917, Kerensky (1881-1970) served as Minister-Chairman of the Russian Provisional Government, which took over in the Tsar's stead, following the February Revolution of 1917 which resulted in the Tsar's abdication.
     Third, the October Revolution took place with little bloodshed - and no rushing of the palace by Russian civilians - occuring overnight, through a series of discreet murders of palace guards, and replacement of those guards by Bolshevik sympathizers. Thus, the idea that Lenin and the Bolsheviks directly and immediately replaced the Romanovs as rulers of Russia, is completely false, because it ignores that transition period between February/March and October/November 1917, and omits Kerensky, the Duma, and the Provisional Government from the narrative.
     Additionally, and problematically, the plot of the 1997 film Anastasia (as well as the new musical which is based on it) seems to imply that the Romanovs were chased out of the palace by Bolsheviks, and that most of the Romanovs (except Anastasia and her grandmother) were murdered instantly. That did not happen. Tsar Nicholas abdicated on behalf of himself and his son Alexei, the family was non-violently ordered to leave the palace, and they were sent into exile, eventually ending up in the Ipatiev House in Yekaterinburg.The Ipatiev House was known as the "House of Special Purpose"; the Romanovs spent their last 78 days alive there, where they were eventually murdered nearly a year and a half after Nicholas's abdication.

     The plots of the film and musical also seem to imply that the Romanovs were driven out of the palace with Rasputin chasing after them. This did not happen, could not have happened (given the timelines), and is nothing more than a flight of fictional fancy and poetic license. In the opening scene of the 1997 film, the Tsar tells Rasputin "You are a traitor, get out!" when Rasputin returns to the palace after being banished. But there is little evidence to suggest that the Tsar had anywhere near that much antipathy for Rasputin. Both the Tsar and his wife Alix referred to Rasputin as "our friend", and considered him a trusted spiritual advisor and confidant. Hoping to cool-down tensions regarding Rasputin, the Tsar temporarily exiled him in 1911-12 (sending him on a pilgrimage to Ukraine, Istanbul, and the Holy Land), but the Tsar only sent Rasputin into permanent exile after being pressured to do so by members of his family and the royal court. Those people felt that Rasputin's presence was disruptive,, and threatened to weaken the already rapidly decreasing stability of Romanov rule.
     In fact, the Tsar was so skeptical about the idea that Rasputin's influence was negative, that when other members of the Romanov family sent Nicholas a letter demanding that he break ties with Rasputin, the Tsar forwarded the letter to his wife instead of responding to it, warning her that members of their family were conspiring against the couple and their friend. Additionally, in 1911, an Russian Orthodox priest, Iliodor, was even defrocked for conspiring against Rasputin. Even after Rasputin became suspected of having an affair with the Tsarina (while the Tsar was away running Russia's involvement in World War I) - and even after the Tsarina appointed several incompetent ministers recommended by the anti-war Rasputin, overriding the Tsar's vehement objections - the Tsar and Tsarina still waited as long as possible to distance themselves from Rasputin. Information regarding when this falling-out actually occurred - and, indeed, whether it occurred at all - however, is hard to come by; as it appears from Rasputin's 1916 letter to Tsarina Alix that they were still on good terms with one another.

III. Strange Facts About Rasputin and the Romanovs

     There are many strange facts about Rasputin and the Romanov family which have been under-reported. Let us first turn to several facts, to which I have alluded above; concerning: 1) the occult; 2) Rasputin's influence on, and alleged affair with, Tsarina Alix of Hesse; and 3) the murder of Rasputin and the possible dismemberment of his corpse.

     1) Occult, spiritual, and religious elements:
     As explained above, the new musical Anastasia was almost completely devoid of spiritual elements, and was totally devoid of references to the occult. The 1997 film Anastasia included Rasputin casting spells and curses, but avoided referencing the Russian Orthodox Church, which played an important part in the stories of both Rasputin and the Romanovs.
     For one, the "Crow Sisters" (Princesses Milica and Anastasia of Montenegro, also jointly nicknamed "The Black Peril") were interested in the occult, and introduced the Romanovs to Rasputin. Before that, the Crow Sisters also introduced the Tsarina to the family's previous faith-healer before Rasputin, a Martinist priest named Maitre Philippe de Lyon (full name Anthelme Nizier Philippe).
     Additionally, the Tsarina (Empress Alix of Hesse, 1864-1918) was obsessed with magic trinkets, charms, and symbols; from lockets bearing pictures of Rasputin, to the swastika (a Hindu symbol signifying good luck and long life, distinct from the Nazi hakenkreutz, which means "crooked cross" and is an inverted swastika).

     2) The possible affair between Rasputin and Alix:
     Rasputin was rumored to be having an affair with the Tsar's wife. Rasputin's predilection for sex and womanizing was well-known; he gave hugs and wet kisses to ladies of the court, and was even charged with raping nuns when he was young. The Empress wrote a letter to Rasputin which read in part, "Only then is my soul at rest when you, my teacher, is sitting beside me and I am kissing your hands and leaning on your savory shoulders." This letter was mimeographed and appeared in newspapers in late 1911, and allegedly Rasputin supplied fodder for this rumor by boasting about it in public, reading her letter, and claiming that the affair was real. Scandalous cartoons appeared in Russian newspapers, depicting Rasputin holding the Tsar and Tsarina like marionettes, and depicting Rasputin in amorous caress with the Empress. However, there is no solid evidence that Rasputin and Alix had such an affair. Alix of Hesse was the prim and proper granddaughter of Queen Victoria, and she was deeply in love with the Tsar, with whom she had five children. Alix would have had little reason or time to have such an affair, because she was preoccupied with spiritual matters, the sickness of her son Alexei, her own sickness, improving her reputation at court, and (later) making decisions in the Tsar's absence.
     Of course, the Tsar's absence (running the Russian army during World War I) certainly gave Alix space to have an affair, if she wanted to. However, many Russians, - including people of the court - were concerned that Alix and Rasputin were German spies, given rumors about Rasputin, and given the fact of Alix's German heritage and her difficulty learning Russian. So even if a brief affair did occur, it still would have been very difficult - as well as risky - for Rasputin and Alix to continue such an affair for any significant stretch of time, without anyone finding out.
     Some sources claim that Rasputin's influence on the royal family was limited to helping to soothe and cure Alexei's ill (hemophilia), while others claim that his influence was much greater. As explained above, Rasputin suggested several ministers for appointment, and Alix pushed those suggestions through and approved them, despite the objections of her husband and other advisors who felt that those ministers were incompetent. By most accounts, Rasputin's influence on the Tsarina (at least) was very significant; some say his stare (and his ability to dilate his pupils at will) had the power to put people in trances. If Rasputin really did have as much influence on Russian politics as he is said to have had, then it seems likely that Rasputin's influence weakened the royal family's grip on power, and therefore made Russia susceptible to revolution.

     3) The dismemberment of Rasputin's corpse:
     As explained above, the priest Iliodor (real name Sergei Michailovich Trufanov, 1880-1952) was dispossessed of his power, after the royal family discovered that he and other priests were conspiring to kill Rasputin. Supposedly at one point, Iliodor even beat Rasputin with a large cross. According to Douglas Smith's 1996 book Rasputin: Faith, Power, and the Twilight of the Romanovs, a midget priest named Blessed Mitya tried to grab Rasputin's penis. It has been alleged that Mitya did this in order to try to rip Rasputin's penis off of his body. Iliodor allegedly grabbed Rasputin's penis too, telling him to stop thinking with his penis and to instead start thinking with his brain. Whether these accounts are fictional or not, Iliodor and Mitya were certainly angry about Rasputin's debauched ways, and the possible damage which his behavior could cause to the church and the royal family, so they would have had plenty of reason to confront Rasputin. Although Iliodor might have had nothing to do with the 1914 attempt on Rasputin's life by Khioniya Guseva (a follower of Iliodor), Iliodor hatched his own plan to kill Rasputin in 1916, with the help of a politician named Alexei Khvostov. Thus, Iliodor's antipathy for Rasputin was well-known, and he certainly had murderous intent at at least one point, so it's entirely possible that the accounts about the cross beating and Blessed Mitya have some truth to them.
     After Rasputin's murder, there were rumors that his penis was cut off; either by the assassins themselves, or else by angry crowds who gained possession of his corpse. However, St. Petersburg senior autopsy surgeon Dr. Dmitry Kosorotov reported finding Rasputin's penis intact. Despite Dr. Kosorotov's report, St. Petersburg's Museum of Erotica claims to be in possession of the preserved penis today. However, some say the preserved penis at that museum is actually some sort of pickled vegetable, and that it is not really Rasputin's penis. On the other hand, according to Rasputin's daughter Matryona Rasputina (1989-1977), Rasputin's penis was 12 or 13 inches long, so given the immense size of the preserved "penis", it's possible that it's real. We may never know.
     Rasputin's daughter, by the way, led a life almost as strange as her father's. She worked as a cabaret dancer, and as a lion tamer with the Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus. She allegedly found a group of women in Paris who were in possession of her father's penis, venerating it as if it were a holy charm that could give fertility, and giving pieces of it away to people. If there is any truth to the idea that parts of Rasputin's penis were cut off in the 1920s, then the preserved penis on display in St. Petersburg could not possibly be his real penis, because it appears to be fully intact.

     Next, we shall turn our attention to several facts to which I have not yet alluded in this article; namely: 4) Rasputin's relationship with Tsar Nicholas; 5) Rasputin's relationship with Tsarevitch (tsar-evident; crown prince) Alexei; 6) other miscellaneous facts about Rasputin and his assassin; 7) the role of the Germans and Kaiser Wilhelm II in the destabilization and collapse of Romanov rule; and 8) the Romanovs' status in the Russian Orthodox Church.

     4) Rasputin's relationship with the Tsar:
     Towards the end of Tsar Nicholas II's life and reign, he became addicted to several drugs, including cocaine, opium, and morphine. The Tsar would take cocaine to treat his colds, and opium and morphine to reduce stomach pain. Rasputin's participation in orgies, some of which may have been fueled by drugs, have led researchers to suggest that Rasputin may have been supplying these drugs to the Tsar, even prescribing them for his maladies. If Rasputin did supply those drugs, then the dependency which that relationship would have caused, should help explain why the Tsar was so reticent to dismiss Rasputin from his service. The Tsar's use of opium and morphine to soothe his stomach troubles, and the acceptability of the use of raw forms of opioids in medicine at the time, could also help explain why Tsarevitch Alexei's doctors had no reservations about prescribing him Aspirin, a pain reliever and anti-inflammatory medication which was considered a new "miracle drug" at the time.

     5) Rasputin's relationship with Alexei:
     Tsarevitch Alexei (1904-1918) was born with hemophilia, a disorder in which the blood does not clot normally, leading to prolonged bleeding. Alexei inherited this disorder from his mother Alix (females are carriers of hemophilia), and in turn, Alix inherited the disorder from her mother Princess Alice, who got it from her mother Queen Victoria. Queen Victoria's encouragement of incest among her progeny resulted in the birth of heirs who were inbred, and thus predisposed to inheriting recessive disorders (of which hemophilia is one).
     Rasputin is often portrayed as having used "faith healing" to reduce Alexei's bleeding. Rasputin was known for slowly waving his hands in front of his patients' eyes, and had a unique ability to soothe people's worries and discomfort using this method. Alix believed Rasputin to be the only person capable of helping Alexei. Why this was so, was considered a mystery. Some believed that Rasputin's holiness (he claimed to have seen apparitions of the Virgin Mary) was the only possible explanation.
     However, there is a purely scientific and medical explanation for Rasputin's effect on the boy. As explained above, Alexei's doctors had been giving him Aspirin, to treat the discomfort and pain which he was experiencing (alongside prolonged bleeding) as results of his injuries. So severe was Alexei's hemophilia, that the slightest scraping of the knee could cause him to bleed profusely for days at a time.
     Although it makes sense that his doctors would prescribe Aspirin to relieve pain, the Aspirin actually had a negative effect on Alexei's hemophilia overall. Aspirin thins the blood, and slows-down the process of blood clotting. This caused the prince to heal from injuries more slowly, delaying the clotting and scabbing which Alexei needed. This explains Rasputin's 1912 letter to the Tsarina, which read in part, "Do not allow the doctors to bother him [Alexei] too much."
     Without Rasputin's interventions, Alexei's doctors would have continued prescribing him Aspirin, which, despite soothing his pain, was only making his condition worse. Thus, Rasputin's influence on Alexei and his family was as far as one could imagine from sinister, manipulative, and scientifically baseless.

     6) other facts about Rasputin, Anastasia, and Rasputin's assassin:

     First off, most people pronounce "Rasputin" incorrectly. In the 1997 film Anastasia, and in the musical - and in the non-Russian-speaking world in general - Rasputin is pronounced "rass-PYOO-tin", with the stress on the middle syllable. However, the actual pronunciation - given correctly in the 1970s disco song "Rasputin" by Boney M - is "RAHS-poo-tyeen", with the stress on the first syllable.
     While we're at it, Anastasia is not pronounced like "Anna STAY-zha", nor like "honest Asia". It's pronounced "ah-nah-STAH-zee-yah", with the stress on the third to last syllable. Anastasia is spelled "Anastasija" in Romanized Russian.
     One more fact about Anastasia: Anastasia took some of the first teen "selfies" (self-portraits), seen below. The children had Kodak Brownie cameras, and took them nearly everywhere they went. This helped them become perhaps the most photographed children in the world at the time.


     Another interesting fact about Rasputin is the possibility that he is an ancestor or relative of Vladimir Putin, the current president of Russia. Putin's ancestors were named Putyatin, coming from the Tver region of Russia. However, the Tver region is over 2,000 miles from Pokrovskoye, the Siberian town in which Rasputin was born, and Putin's lineage is difficult to trace, so it's unknown whether the Putyatin family had ties to the region in which Rasputin grew up. Vladimir Putin's paternal grandfather was named Spiridon Ivanovich Putin, died in 1965, and was born in 1879 (ten years after Rasputin was born, making them contemporaries).
     On the other hand, the Putyatin family is a family of Russian nobles, which makes Putin distantly related to all members of the Russian royal family. Additionally, Rasputin was photographed with a member of the Putyatin family in 1911. There is also a striking similarity in resemblance between Vladimir Putin and Tsarina Alix.

From left to right:
Prince Mikhail Sergeyevich Putyatin,
Grigori Efimovich Rasputin,
and Colonel D. Loman.

A young Vladimir Putin (left), and a young Alix of Hesse (right)

     While none of these facts, by any means, conclusively proves a direct lineage from Rasputin to Putin, the aforementioned facts should still prompt us to wonder the following: 1) whether Rasputin and Putyatin discussed and acknowledged their family ties when they were photographed together; 2) whether they discussed Vladimir Putin's grandfather Spiridon, who would have been 31 or 32 at the time; 3) whether Rasputin could have impregnated one of Putyatin's female relatives, resulting in a child of noble birth, claiming Rasputin as father; and 4) whether one of Vladimir Putin's ancestors could have been the result of an affair between Rasputin and the Empress (if such an affair did occur, which is dubious).

     Rasputin may have learned how to soothe human patients through whispers, from having been a "horse-whisperer" when he was younger. He was also a horse-thief as a youth. On one occasion - in 1883, when Rasputin was 14 years old - he helped catch a horse thief and helped return the horse to its owner. Some people present for that event believe Rasputin did so with the help of God. This was the first story about Rasputin's exploits which led to rumors that he had holy powers. Later in his life, however, many people grew to suspect that his power came not from God, but rather from the Devil.

     One interesting piece of information about Rasputin is the possibility that he was involved in a sex cult called the khlysts / khlysti. The khlysti were a radical Christian sect, which was known for engaging in ecstatic rituals, including orgies.
     Many sources on Rasputin claimed that he belonged to the khlysti; however, there is no evidence that supports this. However, Rasputin did know about - and meet - the khlysti, from his time as a wandering strannik. After marrying and having children, Rasputin began throwing orgies in his basement - orgies which allegedly included very young women - much to the dismay of his wife.

     Finally, Rasputin's lead assassin, Prince Felix Yusupov, was a bisexual and a cross-dresser / transvestite. While attending Oxford as a youth, he was into the occult, attended seances, and claimed to have had premonitions. Yusupov's family claimed descent from the prophet Muhammad, as well as from the rulers of ancient Egypt.

     7) The Germans' role in the destabilization of Romanov rule:
     As explained above, both Rasputin and Tsarina Alix were suspected of being German spies. On the other hand, Rasputin has also been alleged to have been working on the behalf of Jewish Communists (which is dubious because Rasputin was not Jewish, but which is nonetheless possible because of Rasputin's opposition to Russian involvement in World War I, and because of the possibility that Rasputin intended his actions to destabilize Romanov rule).
     Whatever the cases, the German threat against Russia was real. In World War I, Tsar Nicholas found himself at war with his own first cousin, German Emperor and Kaiser Wilhelm II. Assisting Russia in that war was the United Kingdom, headed by King George V, a first cousin of both Nicholas and Wilhelm. That's right; three male grandsons of Queen Victoria grew up to go to war against one another. You can learn more about the relationship between George and Nicholas, and more about the many relatives of Queen Victoria, by reading my 2019 article "Regarding the Surviving Royal Families of Europe", at the following address:
     Not only that; Wilhelm's actions arguably directly caused the assassination of his cousins the Romanovs. While Vladimir Lenin was in exile in Switzerland, the Kaiser funded the publication of Bolshevik propaganda, and supplied the funds (in gold) which Lenin needed to get to Russia. Once in Russia (thanks to the Kaiser's help), Lenin was able to reconnect with the Russian Bolsheviks, and spread his influence and gain power, eventually ending up as Chairman of the S.F.S.R..
     While there is no concrete evidence proving definitively that Lenin directly ordered the murder of the Tsar's children, it's possible that he at least ordered the murder of the Tsar, who was nearly universally hated throughout the country, and whom even the reformist Kerensky advocated assassinating. Some researchers believe that Lenin, Yakov Sverdlov, and Felix Dzerzhinsky gave instructions on how to kill the Romanovs; while ither researchers believe that Lenin was vehemently opposed to murdering the Tsar's family (possibly owing to the remoteness of the possibility that his daughters could come to pose any real threat to Bolshevik power, and also to the fact that Nicholas abdicated in favor of both himself and his son and primary heir, thus nearly neutralizing the threat from Alexei). If Lenin truly didn't issue any such order - that is, if he didn't issue orders to assassinate any member of the Romanov family - then the order to carry out the assassinations must have come from the Ural Regional Soviet. It's also possible that the Ural Soviet sent-out an order to kill the Tsar, but not the rest of the family, and that the Bolshevik assassins (led by Yakov Yurovsky, a Jew from Siberia, and Yekaterinburg native Peter Ermakov) took it upon themselves to kill all of them. Some of the executioners recalled that, on the eve of the murders, they received a telegram from Moscow ordering them to kill the Tsar but not the rest of his family, while the issue of what to do with the family was left up to the local Soviet government (the Ural Soviet). Greg King and Penny Wilson, authors of The Fate of the Romanovs, believe that the orders to murder the family came from the Ural Soviet.
     While Rasputin, Kerensky and company, and Lenin, are among those usually chiefly blamed for the abdication and assassination of the Romanovs, the role of the Germans (and especially of Nicholas's own first cousin Kaiser Wilhelm) should not be downplayed, given the Kaiser's assistance of Lenin, and the wearing-down of the Russian army by the German army during the first few years of World War I.

     8) the Romanovs' status in the Russian Orthodox Church:
     On November 1st, 1981, the Romanov family - Tsar Nicholas, Empress Alix, and their five children - were declared to be "new martyrs" by the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad. According to a Time Magazine article from 2018, "the Patriarchate in Moscow initially resisted recognition of the Romanovs as Saints, but finally followed suit in 2000".
     Thus, the Romanovs were recognized as saint-martyr, and passion-bearer - that is, they were canonized as saints - because they are considered to have died as martyrs, assassinated as punishment for their faith in Christianity. The idea that the Romanovs' assassination was an act of Christian persecution, is supported by the fact that many early Bolsheviks were atheists, who rejected religion,  rejected the influence of church and state upon one another, and rejected the Tsar's claim that his authority was given to him by God.
     There were also many Jewish Bolsheviks - and especially "Jewish atheist Bolsheviks" (that is, secular Bolsheviks raised by Jewish families) - whom shared many of those views on religion, and whom were involved with the party in those early days. But I do not intend to focus on the degree of Jewish involvement in either the Romanov killings, nor the Bolshevik revolution, in this article; that information can be found elsewhere.

IV. Tracking-Down Anastasia's Remains

     The key pieces of evidence that suggest Anastasia could have survived, are the facts surrounding the botched disposal of the Romanovs' bodies, the confusion of Anastasia's body with those of two of her sisters at several points, and the fact that there is still one Romanov daughter's body missing from the Russian Archives.
     After their execution by firing squad in the Ipatiev House in Yekaterinburg on July 17th, 1918, the bodies of the Romanovs and their attendants (11 people in total) were loaded onto a truck. They were taken to the Kopyatki Forest, where they were stripped, mutilated, and doused with acid. They were then dumped into an abandoned mine shaft, and moved the next day in order to relocate them to a more discreet place where they could not be found.
     Yakov Yurovsky had decided to personally oversee the disposal of the bodies, due to Peter Ermakov's drunkenness, and some of the assassins' attempts to grope the genitals of the former Empress's corpse, and to seize some of the diamonds concealed in the children's clothes. Interestingly, the nearly three pounds of diamonds in their clothes, provided them some level of protection against their assassins' bullets.
     In 1919, after failing to find the Romanovs' bodies, investigators with the White Army concluded that their remains had been cremated at an abandoned mineshaft called Ganina Yama, where they had found evidence of a fire. Scholars believe that, after dumping the bodies into the mineshaft, the Bolsheviks tried to make it collapse by throwing grenades into it. At some point, the bodies were crushed. The name of the field in which all 11 bodies were found, is "Porosenkov Log", or, in English, "Pig's Meadow".
     Scholars say the Bolsheviks failed to cause the mineshaft to collapse, and therefore decided to move the bodies to a new location to prevent them from being found. While in transit to the new burial site, the truck got stuck in mud, leading the assassins to take two bodies off of the truck, and dispose of them in the forest nearby. Many people believe that those two bodies were those of Alexei and Maria. Those bodies are now buried at the Peter and Paul Fortress in St. Petersburg.
     Nine bodies were buried together; those of five of the Romanovs, and four of their servants and attendants. Those five Romanov bodies were found by "amateur researchers". Only five of the seven Romanovs lie in the St. Petersburg Cathedral today; Nicholas, Alexandra, and three of their five children, all daughters. Again, two bodies were missing, those of Alexei and one of his sisters; but which sister that was, remains a disputed matter.
     Some sources provide the date of the discovery of those bodies as 1976, while other sources say 1977 or 1979. In 1991, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, tests were ordered to verify the authenticity of the bones. The location of the bodies, which had previously been kept a secret, was revealed. Aside from the conflicting reports about the date, there are also conflicting reports about whether the bodies found in 1979 were found in an abandoned pit, or "near a cart track", or "under railroad ties on a county road" (probably a reference to Koptiaki Road).
     An investigation surrounding the bones of those five bodies began in 1993, and closed in 1998, after the five bodies were tested. DNA tests confirmed that they were Romanovs, and the bodies were buried in the St. Petersburg Cathedral. There was just one problem: two bodies were still unaccounted for; those of Alexei and one of his sisters. Which means that, while those DNA tests did prove that the recovered bodies were Romanovs, those DNA tests did not confirm the identity of the missing bodies (which would have been impossible to do, because they were still missing, and not available to be tested).
     There seems to be no dispute that the remains of the former tsar and tsarina, and their daughter Olga, now lie in the St. Petersburg Cathedral. In fact, new tests in 2015, ordered by the Russian Orthodox Church, confirmed again that the tsar and tsarina's remains were among those recovered. However, the Russian Orthodox Church refused to accept that two bodies found in 2007 were Romanovs. Those bodies were allegedly the remains of Alexei and the missing Romanov daughter, and since the church has not accepted them, they remain unburied. The reason why the Russian Orthodox Church is taking this so seriously, is because - since the Romanovs are now considered saint-martyrs - any acceptance of a Romanov body will mean the acceptance of a holy relic into the church's possession.
     On August 23rd, 2007, archeologists confirmed that they had discovered the remains of a male and female. According to the next day's issue of The Guardian, a 46-year-old man named Sergei Plotnikov claimed to have found the bodies, and his friend Leonid helped him dig them up. They were found in a "wooded site" about 6 miles north of Yekaterinburg, not far from where the other nine bodies were buried.
     To repeat, a male and female were found at that location. At the time of his death, Alexei was 13, and about to turn 14 the next month; while Anastasia was 17 years old in July 1918; Maria was 19, Tatiana was 21, and Olga was 22. The male corpse found in 2007 was reportedly between the ages of 10 and 13 at death, while the female was between 18 and 23. This means that Alexei was probably too young to be the male corpse, while Anastasia was probably too young to be the female corpse.
     However, there have been conflicting reports surrounding the age ranges of those corpses. Another report put the male corpse between 12 and 15, and the female between 15 and 19. And if those age ranges are correct, then it's entirely possible that the bodies belonged to Alexei and Anastasia.
     However, nobody ever claimed that the female corpse was Anastasia's. The bodies found in 2007 were reported to be the bodies of Alexei and Maria. Which is feasible, because Maria was slightly older than Anastasia, and thus within that 18 to 23 age range (and so were Tatiana and Olga). So if Maria's body was found in 2007, then why did people suspect that it was Alexei and Anastasia who were missing? If Anastasia was so certainly dead in 1918, then why did anyone even listen to Anna Anderson when she claimed to be Anastasia in 1922?
     An American scientist, looking at dental and vertebral evidence, concluded that Anastasia and Alexei were the two missing bodies. However, a Russian scientist, looking at photographic superimpositions, concluded that Maria and Alexei were the two missing bodies. Bone fragment evidence suggests that it was Anastasia's skeleton which was found and examined, but the photographic superimpositions suggest that Maria was the youngest female corpse among those remains found in the 1970s. It's entirely possible that the researchers were just mistaken, and they examined the skeleton of Maria, and accidentally identified it as Anastasia's. The DNA evidence showed that the youngest daughter's corpse is that of a Romanov, but it didn't prove which one it was.
     What this means is that even if Anastasia's body has still never been positively identified. That's because, for one, the bodies found in 2007 might not even be Romanovs' at all. Second, even if they are Romanovs, and the male is definitely Alexei, then it's still unconfirmed whether that female corpse is that of Anastasia or Maria. Also, it's still unconfirmed whether the youngest female corpse in the St. Petersburg Cathedral - that is, the youngest female corpse among the five Romanovs found with the bodies of their four servants - is that of Anastasia or Maria.
     The following page, from an unknown book, says it all. [Note: Plenty of information regarding skull, bone, and DNA evidence, can be found by simply typing "Anastasia Maria Romanovs bones" into the image search feature of an internet search engine.]

     According to The Fate of the Romanovs by Greg King and Penny Wilson, Maria was shot through the thigh. If true, this can only mean that Maria is body #5 in the image above, and that Anastasia was the female Romanov corpse missing from the other 9 bodies.
     But that fact does not necessarily prove that Anastasia's was the female corpse discovered in 2007, since: 1) no DNA test has yet confirmed that it is indeed Anastasia; and 2) the Russian Orthodox Church has still not yet accepted that the two bodies found in 2007 are Romanovs.
     According to the Time article published on the hundredth anniversary of the Romanovs' assassination, in 2015, the Russian Orthodox Church "insisted that the Romanov bodies be exhumed so that additional samples might be taken for further tests to be conducted by its own, exclusively Russian scientists". That article in Time also stated that "so far no announcement of the church's findings has been forthcoming", and went on to explain that the American F.B.I. (Federal Bureau of Investigators) has used its own DNA samples to conduct research independently of Russian scientists.
     The F.B.I. did this with the help of former U.S. Navy captain Peter Sarandinaki, the president of the SEARCH Foundation (the Scientific Expedition to Account for the Romanov CHildren). The Russian Orthodox Church Abroad has named Sarandinaki the Official Representative of the church to the Commission for the Study of the Remains of the Imperial Family.
     Sarandinaki and his team have concluded that all eleven of those murdered on July 17th, 1918 - and found in two different locations at Pig's Meadow - have been accounted for, including Maria, Alexei, and Anastasia. Sarandinaki's team believes that Body #6 is Anastasia's, not Maria's.
     But who asked the F.B.I.? How can the American Federal Bureau of Investigators even have jurisdiction over a murder that happened over a hundred years ago on the other side of the world? When will Russian scientists take those "additional samples" they need to conduct "further tests"? Will the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad accept the results of the Russian scientists, or its representative Peter Sarandinaki and his organization SEARCH?  What if the Russian scientists reach the same conclusion as Sarandinaki; will the church accept both or neither? Be wary of possible upcoming news about those possibilities - in Russian, British, and American news sources - over the next few months and years.
     We might just have to wait this one out. It might seem like a long wait, but it's been over a hundred years since the Romanovs' murders, so that makes a couple years seems like a short amount of time. Thankfully, we have all these articles, books, television shows, films, and musicals about them to read and watch in the meantime!

     V. Conclusions

     The difference between the real-life stories of the Romanovs and Rasputin, and the way they are portrayed in fiction, is full of paradoxes.
     On one hand, a depiction of the fall of the Romanovs is incomplete without an inclusion of the Bolshevik Revolution which precipitated and completed it. But on the other hand, a depiction of the Romanov dynasty's decline which focuses too much on the Bolsheviks, risks downplaying the importance of the Duma, the forced abolition of Nicholas II, and the Provisional Government, in the transition period between Romanov rule and Communist rule under Lenin.
     On one hand, a narrative which depicts Rasputin as a "mad monk" possessed by the Devil, issuing curses (like the narrative of the 1997 film Anastasia), risks downplaying the good Rasputin did for Alexei in the way of treating his hemophilia. But on the other hand, a narrative which depicts Rasputin as too helpful, risks downplaying the degree of his influence on Alix; and, in turn, his influence on the affairs of the Russian state, and on the weakening of its competence, credibility, stability, and power.
     On one hand, Anastasia Nikolaevna Romanov would be 118 years old today, and thus is almost certainly no longer with us. But on the other hand, Anastasia's remains have still never been positively identified in a manner which has been accepted by all relevant actors, so it's not really fair to say she's dead either. Moreover, the Russian Orthodox Church has made Anastasia - and her brother, sisters, and parents - saint-martyrs and passion-bearers. So to claim that Anastasia is dead, when her spirit lives forever, is patently absurd.
     Just like the loved ones you've lost, she and her family are alive as long as we remember them. Here's to a group of unforgettable, mysterious, fascinating people.

     VI. Sources

     You can learn more about Rasputin and the Romanovs by visiting the following links:

Rasputin: Khlysts, and German and Jewish spying (many claims in this article are dubious, and may be mere speculation)

Map of Rasputin's journeys
Rasputin's penis

The Tsar on drugs

Alexei's illness

The Kaiser funded the Bolsheviks

Rasputin's exile and murder

The ordering of the murders

Deaths of the Romanovs

Discovery of the Romanovs' bodies

Time article on DNA tests ordered on bodies found in 2007

Captain Peter Sarandinaki's SEARCH Foundation

Written on August 15th and 16th, 2019
Based on notes taken between May 2019 and August 3rd and 8th, 2019
Originally published on August 16th, 2019
Edited on August 17th, 2019

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Reform or Abolition: Thirty-Point Basic Platform for U.S. House of Representatives in 2020

Table of Contents

1. Strictly Limit Government
2. Shrink the Federal Government
3. Stop Policing the World
4. End "Big Brother" Programs
5. Limit Congressmen's Power, and Cut Office Costs
6. Reform Elections and Ballot Access
7. Protect the 2nd and 3rd Amendments by Building a Bridge Between Them
8. Balance the Budget, and Pay Off the National Debt in 23 Years
9. Reform the Federal Tax Code
10. Tax and Break Up Monopolies (Or Stop Creating Them)
11. Reform Business and Banking
12. Reduce and Abolish Income Taxes
13. Enact Land Value Taxation
14. Get the Feds Out of Local Environmental Issues
15. Achieve Real Free Enterprise / Free the Markets
16. Enact Mutualist Reforms to Land and Credit
17. Reform or Abolish Intellectual Property
18. Keep the Internet Open and Free
19. Achieve Fair Trade Through Real Free Trade
20. Reform Immigration and Abolish Citizenship
21. Abolish or Reform the Census, and Make Tax Burdens Equal
22. Devolve Entitlements to the States
23. Achieve Free Health Care Through Free Markets
24. Honor the Rights to Work, Unionize, Strike, and Boycott
25. Reform or Abolish Public Schools
26. Reform Laws on Rape, Kidnapping, and Ages of Consent
27. Allow Abortion, But Don't Subsidize It
28. Reform Marriage Licensing, Divorce, and Custody Laws
29. End the War on Drugs and Abolish the F.D.A.
30. Infrastructure, Roads, Driver Licensing, Transportation, and the Post Office


1. Strictly Limit Government
     Abolish all agencies of government as soon as possible, unless significant, meaningful reform can be made swiftly, which would strictly limit, shrink, and decentralize decentralize government; establish equal protection under the law for all people; and make the government fully voluntary. Depoliticize the lawmaking process by allowing independent panels of scientists and scholars replace elected officials to make policy (concerning issues such as elections, environmental justice, the judiciary, economics, and others). Help to shrink the expense of government and the total number of government workers; by encouraging all units of government – in Illinois and nationwide – to eliminate redundant and duplicative governmental agencies. Make government programs optional through augmenting them with opt-out systems. Allow people to choose to be outlaws (and receive no protection from the state), or to opt to be physically exiled, in the event they are charged with a serious crime.  De-territorialize government; by respecting the need for mutual aid across borders, and by encouraging all units of government to begin offering services to people in neighboring jurisdictions wherever it is logistically possible to do so. Prohibit all public services - especially libraries, food pantries, and beaches and park districts - from discriminating against people based on the town or state of their residence.

2. Shrink the Federal Government
     The federal government has no rightful authority to regulate public education, energy, nor housing; nor does it have the rightful authority to own as much land as it does, nor the right to promote commerce instead of regulating it responsibly. The authority to solve problems related to those issues, lies with the state and local governments and with the people, not with the federal government. The only reason the federal government has been allowed to do these things, is because presidents have absorbed entire sectors of the economy into-under their control under the guise of "re-organizing the cabinet", and supreme courts have unwisely allowed these sweeping measures to stand despite their unconstitutionality. The high cost of government, the overreach of the federal government,  and the inability of local communities to solve problems, stem directly from this problem: that of the federal government being too large and unwieldy, and having many cabinet positions and cabinet-level departments which lack any proper constitutional authorization. We must "destroy the ring" before a federal administration can get hold of it and use it for evil. Abolish between five and seven federal cabinet and cabinet-level departments; including the Departments of Commerce, Education, Energy, Housing and Urban Development, and the Interior. Abolish the Department of Education, and advocate for the abolition of public schools. Abolishing the Department of Homeland Security while re-organizing all remaining constitutional authorities exercised under it into-under the Department of Justice and/or the Department of State. Abolish all unconstitutional "czar" positions in the federal government. Enact constitutional amendments strengthening the rights of the states to try suits at common law, and to legislate on most matters besides military, and treasury. Save the taxpayers money, and reduce the costs of government; by having the federal government do less and less until it eventually does nothing. The American people will stand up as the federal government stands down.

3. Stop Policing the World
     Return to pre-9/11-level military spending, in order to make it possible to achieve the kinds of budget surpluses the federal government passed in the four years prior to 9/11. We can decrease our military budget significantly without sacrificing our safety or military readiness; as the U.S. spends as much on military as the next 18 countries combined, while the spending of the #2 country (China) doesn't even amount to one-quarter of America's. Dismantle between 800 and 1000 overseas military bases; bring all troops and private contractors home; especially from Iraq, Afghanistan, South Korea, Japan, Germany, Turkey, Djibouti, and Yemen). Pass legislation limiting the distance U.S. troops can stray from U.S. shores in peacetime to between 12 nautical miles and 90 or 100 statute miles. Continue talks with Russia and other nations to reduce the size of our nuclear arsenal. Ensure that veterans have a wide range of choices when it comes to their health coverage and pensions.

4. End "Big Brother" Programs
     Repeal the U.S.A. P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act of 2001, and the 2001 A.U.M.F. (Authorization for the Use of Military Force Against Terrorists). Repeal all unconstitutional laws which have been permitted under National Defense Authorization Acts (N.D.A.A.s) enacted since 9/11, especially those pertaining to the use of drones, surveillance, and torture). Curb the power of the Transportation Security Agency (T.S.A.) and V.I.P.R. squads to illegally impede people's freedom of movement.  Remove the criminal penalty for physically resisting or assaulting T.S.A. agents for groping or taking nude images of children, whether in the course of normal job duties or not, by classifying such actions as necessary to prevent greater harm to those incapable of adequately defending themselves. Urge governments across the country to enact sweeping reforms limiting the power of police to subject people to invasive internal searches, except in cases in which the police have obtained a specific warrant from a judge, and there is cause to believe that what is being concealed internally is not just drugs but some actually deadly form of contraband such as an explosive device. Repeal the legislation which permitted “continuity of government” programs such as REX1984. Urge the president to consider rescinding some of the dozens upon dozens of overlapping, simultaneous, official national states of emergency in which the government has declared itself to be over the years. Propose a constitutional amendment which would formally remove the power to suppress insurrections from the official set of U.S. congressional duties.

Limit Congressmen's Power, and Cut Office Costs
     Use the U.S. House of Representative's office as a bully pulpit to make recommendations as to how state and local officials could regulate issues which the Constitution obligates the federal government to leave to the states and the people; while restraining from overstepping those same constitutional boundaries by refraining from advocating for federal intervention in issues which rightfully belong to the state and the people according to the Enumerated Powers. Operate my office as a home-style politician, acting as a vessel while deferring to majorities of constituents in all cases in which it is constitutionally appropriate to do so (with deference to the Enumerated Powers, and other powers properly delegated to the federal government by the states through the amendment process). Offer amendments to limit the number of consecutive terms of members of the House of Representatives to four, the number of terms of members of the Senate to two, and the duration of Supreme Court justice terms to twenty years. Offer amendments to make all elected positions instantly recallable through a popular and democratic recall election. Aim to cut a total of 80% from my own $176,000 personal salary as a U.S. Representative, and aim to cut a total of 90% from the approximately $4 million office of the Illinois's 10th district U.S. Rep – returning all of those funds to the Treasury Department – and propose amendments requiring other congressmen to do the same.

Reform Elections and Ballot Access
     Advocate for the modification of the Electoral College, alongside the modification of the federal government. Eliminate the U.S. Senate, and/or add a third legislative body whose apportionment would be based on land area (and modify the Electoral College so as to reflect that arrangement). Urge more states to refrain from punishing protest votes in the Electoral College, and urge more states to either establish proportional representation in the Electoral College or promise electoral votes to the majority vote-getter in that state. Support the people's rights to sue the Commission on Presidential Debates, and urge the League of Women Voters (or some independent nongovernmental non-corporate entity) to take over debate hosting duties from that (unelected) “commission”. To ensure widespread access to polls, prohibit governments from charging fees for identification documents deemed necessary to vote. To prevent election fraud, urge states to require verification of election results through both paper and electronic methods, or else through three different methods or more (in order to provide sufficient checks against one another). Urge states to consider publishing voter rolls in a manner which can be independently verified by any and all residents. Urge all units of government to adopt Ranked Choice Voting. Urge political parties to hold “jungle primaries”, and urge more states to allow 17-year-olds to vote in primaries if they will turn 18 before Election Day.

Protect the 2nd and 3rd Amendments by Building a Bridge Between Them
     Repeal all federal gun control laws, and oppose all efforts to pass new federal gun control legislation. Urge states to repeal all gun control measures which cannot be enacted voluntarily (such as gun buyback programs). Do not restrict people's freedom to sue gun manufacturers, but do not encourage these lawsuits either. We should stop debating about whether to require all genders to register for the draft; and start figuring out how to ban the draft forever. An equal obligation without sufficient reward is not true equality, it is a forced sacrifice. Too many illegal wars of aggression (which only make us less safe) have been sold to the American people. The draft is not necessary; people will join up if the cause is just, and only a fool would refuse to take up arms if at least to defend himself. Augment the Second Amendment by including the language which was omitted from it several months before it was finalized. Amend the Second Amendment in a manner which recognizes that its original intent to protect our freedom to resist being forced to serve in a military draft (by any army) in person. Formally abolish both the military draft and Selective Service registration, either by augmenting the Second Amendment, or by offering new amendments. Expand the Third Amendment so as to prohibit the non-consensual quartering of troops in households even during wartime, and so as to make it clear that a prohibition on quartering troops in each household should logically preclude the legality of drafting one person from each household.

8. Balance the Budget, and Pay Off the National Debt in 23 Years
     Decrease spending; by drastically reducing military spending, transitioning administration of the entitlements to the states, shrinking the federal workforce, and reducing the scope of federal government duties. Enact serious budget balancing measures; such as lockboxes, Cut Cap and Balance and P.A.Y.G.O. (Pay As You Go) -type legislation, and a Balanced Budget Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Aim to reduce federal spending by a total of 50% as soon as possible; resulting in a $2 trillion budget. Meanwhile, continue taking in $3 trillion a year into the Treasury, and do so more responsibly, through enacting meaningful tax reform which reduces the burden on working families and the poor, and increases the burden on enterprises making money off the backs of taxpayers. After successfully enacting the first budget yielding $3T in revenue and $2T in spending, enact long-term policies which legally commit the federal government to continue taking in $1 trillion more than it spends (whether or not the overall budget grows in the process). Take $1 trillion more into the Treasury than the amount which is spent, and repeat this process for 23 years - handing all surplus over to our creditors - until the national debt is fully paid off.

Reform the Federal Tax Code
     Aim to derive any and all federal revenue from: 1) voluntarily donated contributions; 2) user fees and fee-for-service models; or else through 3) the taxation of corporate income, capital gains, and/or the sale of luxury items. Among those corporations, and traders of capital and luxury items, tax rates should weigh most heavily on those economic exchanges in which profit is reaped with the assistance of government (such as through government grants of business privileges and monopoly statuses like patents, and taxpayer-funded subsidies and other forms of assistance. The lowest taxes on enterprise should be incurred by those firms which receive nothing from taxpayers, profit the least, occupy the smallest area of land, and refrain from damaging the environment.

Tax and Break Up Monopolies (Or Stop Creating Them)
     Businesses which reap extraordinary profits, and/or which wield monopolies, could only do so with the assistance of, and with insurance by, government and taxpayers. All business which receive taxpayer funds and taxpayer assistance should be considered public entities, and subject to the regulations and taxation rates which the public deems necessary. It may not be wise to trust the federal government to break-up a business monopoly; because the federal government and the Bureau of Competition are monopolies. We should either use the government's antitrust power to break-up monopolies (and use its taxation powers to tax them) or else take away the government's power to give companies those problematic monopoly privileges in the first place. Revoke all legal privileges for businesses, stopping the problems of monopoly and obscene profits before they start. Abolish the federal Department of Commerce, and urge states to abolish their departments of commerce. End the chartering and incorporation of businesses by government, urging states to rescind state secretary of states' offices' authority to extend Limited Liability Corporation statuses to businesses.

11. Reform Business and Banking
     Tax all corporations receiving public subsidies and taxpayer-funded privileges, at whatever rate the public demands (potentially as high as 100%). Businesses lacking taxpayer-funded privileges and supports may be taxed as low as 0%, provided they do not operate for profit nor make vast swaths of land unuseable. Attempt to tax the profits of “big tech” companies, and whether they evade those taxes or not, revoke all taxpayer-funded privileges which they currently receive. Prohibit government from bailing out corporations, and prohibit government from assisting in their restructuring. Restoring Glass-Steagall would only get us halfway towards separating investment banking from commercial banking; so fully separate the banking industry from the taxpaying public, by either abolishing the F.D.I.C. (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) or else drastically reducing the amount of funds which may be insured. Author and propose bills calling for full and frequent audits of the Federal Reserve, and for its abolition (and the return of its powers to the Congress). Offer amendments to federal anti-usury laws which fully prohibit usury on money and loans, by prohibiting fractional reserve banking, other types of less-than-full-reserve banking, and the continued coinage and issuance of fiat currency. Aim to significantly reduce the federal government's role in business and banking, until the only authorities which remain are 1) making treasury policy, 2) regulating bankruptcies, and 3) keeping the American free trade zone free from obstructions and from laws which unfairly favor domestic goods and services.

12. Reduce and Abolish Income Taxes
     Nine U.S. states and thirteen foreign countries operate entirely without taxing income. Propose a constitutional amendment which would repeal the Sixteenth Amendment, thus formally ending the taxation of income by the federal government. You might ask how we will fund the government without the income tax; however, income taxes don't pay for all costs of government, but only half. There are plenty of other types of taxes that we can use instead; we could easily replace income taxes by phasing them out while doubling revenues from all other forms of taxes now in effect (however, that is not my proposal). Do not replace income taxes with all taxes which now exist; rather, decrease and abolish sales taxes and tariffs instead of increasing them. Replace federal income tax revenues with revenues derived from the taxation of corporate income, capital gains, and/or luxury items. We don't have to risk discouraging productivity and the earning of income by taxing that income away. Working people earned that income; moreover, it is legally classified as “earned income”, so if the government acknowledges that it is earned, then it shouldn't take any of it away. Support all bills which reduce federal income taxes responsibly; avoiding increasing taxes on households earning less than $30,000 per year. 

13. Enact Land Value Taxation
     At the local level, shift the taxation burden off of income and sales, onto land value, while reforming the way property is taxed. Phase-in Land Value Taxation in order to 1) lessen the burden of taxation on ordinary income earners, 2) diminish the need for other types of taxation, and 3) diminish the need for higher and more central levels of government. Urge all local and county governments in America to allow local mutual aid organizations and voluntary associations to build Community Land Trusts (C.L.T.s) and community water and air trusts. Leave C.L.T.s untaxed, while allowing them to tax the unimproved value of land, decreasing the level of taxation of improvements upon the land (like homes and office buildings), while increasing the level of taxation upon the actual owner(s) of the land and the ground underneath it (and not the renters). Allow C.L.T.s to charge fees, and create dividends, as insurance against the harm which could result from extracting natural resources from the ground. Fully taxing all kept and unimproved economic rents will yield $7 trillion in revenue, equal to and supplying the entire cost necessary for all levels of government in America combined. Make Land Value Taxation the only tax, by replacing all other forms of taxation with use-based fees, voluntary forms of funding, and/or the charging of fees by C.L.T.s to cover the cost which it would take to restore the land to its original condition in case it is damaged in the course of its use. Urge all units of local government, and local banks and land management organizations, to either cede their powers to C.L.T.s, or else become members of them and operate according to their rules.

14. Get the Feds Out of Local Environmental Issues
     The federal government never had the authority to regulate environmental issues duly delegated to it by the states and the people. The last three administrations have proven that just because the government is supposed to regulate the environment and keep our air and water clean, it can just as easily refuse to do so, because there's nobody to hold them accountable if they don't. A wise president might be able to get into office every once in a while, and use the E.P.A. (Environmental Protection Agency) for good, but as long as the E.P.A. (and unwise presidents) continues to exist, then that agency is just sitting around waiting to fall into the wrong hands. We should immediately abolish the E.P.A., and urge communities and counties nationwide to establish Community Land Trusts (and air and water trusts) which will have the ability to make environmental policy at the local level, in a manner which ties the economic future of the government and the people to the development of industry in a manner which is ecologically sustainable. Support Green New Deal -type legislation, but oppose federal action towards those ends, supporting state and local solutions instead. Support international environmental agreements such as the Paris Climate Accords, and U.N. programs such as the Kyoto Protocol, but only as long as they remain voluntarily, and support allowing U.S. states to independently participate in those accords if they so desire.

15. Achieve Real Free Enterprise / Free the Markets
     Abolish all subsidies, all forms of taxpayer-funded privilege for business enterprises, and all bailouts - including tax credits and tax loopholes – in order to establish a real free market system in which government can neither subsidize companies nor bail them out, nor in any way choose winners and losers in the market. Allow real price competition, so that the free market can result in free stuff, like it is supposed to. Dismantle anti-competitive barriers to the natural reduction in prices over time, such as intellectual property protection, the Federal Reserve's policies of currency and inflation manipulation, the legality of anti-competitive labor contracts, and professional regulations and Limited Liability Corporation (L.L.C.) status designations (which stifle competition by insulating businesses from legal and financial responsibility for crimes, frauds, and perjuries). Repeal the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act in order to end the criminalization of engaging in coordinated boycotts across multiple industries, so that businesses have no protection from the people's freedom to boycott, and will actually have to compete for customers by offering better products and/or better prices.

16. Enact Mutualist Reforms to Land and Credit
     A. Mutualism
     Promote mutual aid and direct action. Support mutually beneficial voluntary exchange; all economic exchanges should be not only voluntary and consensual, but also beneficial to all parties affected. Limit price to cost; that is, the price of a good or service should be no higher than the cost required to produce it. Foster an economic environment which capable of resulting in the widespread giving of land - and issuance of money, currency, and credit - for free.
     B. Land and Housing
     Enact occupancy and use norms instead of having the government protect property rights, ending the registration of property by local Register of Deeds' offices. End the protection of abandoned, unoccupied, and absentee property. Make housing affordable for all, by creating a free market in housing by ending housing subsidies (and abolishing H.U.D.), thus causing the housing market to clear, resulting in a significant drop in housing prices (if any such price remains at all). Make landlordism unaffordable by taxing all rents which landlords attempt to keep without doing a commensurate amount of work to justify doing so. Legalize “tiny houses”, legalize camping and sleeping in public, and legalize homesteading and adverse possession (“squatting”). Continue to allow residents to camp for free on federal land; and leave them free to hunt, forage, build, and trade as well. Either urge local governments to consider multiple forms of multi-use zoning, or else abolish zoning altogether. Help make housing affordable by making the land underneath it more affordable to begin with; by abolishing the Department of the Interior, requiring the federal government to relinquish all lands in its possession outside of the District of Columbia and overseas island territories.
     C. Money and Credit
     Encourage the creation of consumer-cooperative enterprises and membership in credit unions. Foster a federal regulatory environment which allows for the free issuance of interest-free money, credit, and loans (and zero-collateral loans). Encourage states to create state public banks, as North Dakota has done. Implement a federal U.B.I. (Universal Basic Income program), and/or abolish physical currency and fiat currency, and/or implementing a universal social credit system for all non-incarcerated residents. Establish competing currencies; and advocate for the creation of currencies backed by labor, resources, exports, or ecological sustainability. Educate the American people about alternative forms of exchange (such as mutuum cheques, giving/gifting, going Dutch, bartering, trading and trading-out, paying it forward, freely giving and freely receiving, the potlatch, and the free performance of favors without expecting or ensuring something in return). Advocate for the abolition of physical money, or at least the creation of a basic income -type program alongside reforming the processes of minting and coining such that toxic processing chemicals (such as Bisphenol-A / B.P.A., used in printing bills) are not used to create literally "toxic assets" that the American people have to handle every day. We will never be able to afford enough health care, if the money we afford it with, is covered in chemicals that make us sick. Unless the people are educated about how human beings have lived without money and currency in societies over the centuries, we will be stuck in a rat race where the only objective is to acquire as many U.S. Dollars as possible, and people are encouraged to disregard other people's needs in order to "get ahead". That will not do; we should not try to attach a numeric value to human beings, their labor, nor the things that are necessary to keep people alive.

17. Reform or Abolish Intellectual Property
     The enforcement of laws protecting intellectual property rights, is currently carried out through the threat of force, and through the legally sanctioned use of violence. Putting people in jail for sharing an idea is wrong; even if they are profiting off of it, or claiming it's their own invention, it's certainly not always appropriate to use physical violence to solve the problem. Either revoke the federal government's power to protect intellectual property (including patents, trademarks, etc.), or drastically reduce patent lifespans across the board. Abolish intellectual property through abolishing the monopoly powers, license and permit systems, and property registration systems, which allow intellectual property to exist in the first place. If the duration of patent terms cannot be drastically shortened, then abolish the U.S. Patent Office and/or revoke its power to issue new patents. Urge U.S. states to abolish their state departments of state which have the power to create corporations, or else to revoke their power to create new corporations and L.L.C. status extensions. Stop blaming China for violating American intellectual property rights. Enact in America a trade policy modeled after China's Company Law, which requires foreign businesses setting up shop in China to share their technology with a domestic company in the same industry. The desire to describe the Chinese Company Law as allowing some form of legalized intellectual property theft, is motivated by American businessmen's desire to evade that law.

18. Keep the Internet Open and Free
     Piracy is not theft; because piracy does not remove the original copy, while theft does. Information wants to be free Remove all criminal penalties prescribed for pirating shared files over the internet (provided that those files are shared voluntarily, and that the original was fully paid for). Support the decentralized "peer-to-peer", "creative commons", "open-source collaboration" nature of the internet, by making the internet a public commons, rather than a public utility. Support 'TRUE Fees' Act' -type legislation requiring I.S.P.s (Internet Service Providers) to disclose all prices and fees openly, but oppose legislation designating I.S.P.s as "common carriers". Government's only roles in regulating the internet should be to ensure that free competition is possible and that consumers can know prices.

Achieve Fair Trade Through Real Free Trade
     Tariffs do not punish foreign countries, nor do they pressure countries to ensure that their workers are treated better. Tariffs impose costs upon domestic importers; that is, American workers, not foreign workers. We must stop increasing our tariffs on other countries without cause, because everyone knows that all countries affected bear costs of the tariffs (including because domestic importers can find ways to transfer the costs of those tariffs onto their consumers and exporters). Establish real free trade, and zero tariffs, without trying to bully other countries into lowering their tariffs first. Free trade occurs through international business partnerships, operating with or without government assistance. We can achieve free trade without creating a treaty between multiple governments. Make future trade negotiation by governments unnecessary, by reducing tariffs to zero and abolishing them. The federal government should consider all bilateral and multilateral trade negotiations which reduce tariffs for all countries involved. Establish fair trade – both within the country and without - through achieving freedom of movement for labor and capital. Stop unnecessarily discouraging trade – and stop unnecessarily politicizing trade, risking trade wars – by imposing obstructive, unnecessary taxes on the importation and exportation of goods. Reduce all tariffs to zero immediately, and offer a constitutional amendment which would formally abolish the imposition of all tariffs, imposts, duties, and excises not necessary to cover inspection costs (i.e., including sales taxes, but not including inspection fees). Reduce and abolish foreign aid, in order to prevent foreign countries from spending it to subsidize their own domestic enterprises. Abolish EXIM (the Export-Import Bank of the United States).

20. Reform Immigration and Abolish Citizenship
     The chief delineation in our society, regarding with whom we should associate, should be on the basis of violence vs. non-violence, nor citizen vs. non-citizen, nor whether someone has followed all the laws (even if they don't make sense). Coming to America without permission is a misdemeanor the first two times you do it, and it can be done without trespassing and without committing acts of violence. Either make illegal immigration a civil offense, or cease criminalizing illegal entry by non-violent people. Stop trapping seasonal migrant farmers in America by making it easy to come but illegal to leave. Don't allow police officers to detain undocumented immigrants for petty crimes in order to justify deporting them. Abolish I.C.E. but continue to deport violent immigrants; deport violent immigrants through the State Department and/or the Justice Department, not through the unconstitutional Department of Homeland Security and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (I.C.E.) which operates under it. Urge state governors to use Jeffersonian nullification and the Tenth Amendment to prevent the federal government from exercising authority to enforce any policy aside from the bare minimum of what it takes to “establish a uniform rule of naturalization” (establish a rule, not enforce it). Urge governors to enjoin federal troops from deporting non-violent immigrants, and arrest I.C.E. officers if they attempt to enforce unduly authorized federal immigration legislation which oversteps the bounds of the immigration authorities articulated in the Enumerated Powers. In order to prevent unwarranted deportations of non-violent undocumented immigrants, propose legislation which either formally revokes the Census Bureau's authority to include a citizenship question, or allow census respondents to answer “no” in such a way that leaves them free to be an outlaw and receive no protection from the federal government if they so desire. Urge state governors to enjoin census takers from operating within state lines if the census includes a citizenship question which does not allow people to dissociate from the federal government. Support open borders – with minimal vetting (a non-intrusive assessment of threat, and no medical examinations unless requested) – as a way to establish freedom of movement and travel for workers, as part of achieving the greater goal of establishing a free trade zone within and without America, in which all labor and capital may flow freely across the land. Nowadays, the main purpose for citizenship status to exist (besides to ensure equal protection under the law) is to confer access to benefits (most of which the federal government has no authority to provide) and to conferring special privileges onto citizens which non-citizens may not enjoy. This allows non-citizens to be deprived of rights and freedoms, while citizens enjoy first-class status (or something approaching that, if they aren't rich). This is a caste system, a caste system is not compatible with human rights; and there is no reason to justify discrimination on the basis of national origin. Repeal and oppose all legislation providing for discrimination on the basis of national origin, and majority religion of nation of origin, in immigration vetting. Oppose all proposals to create registry systems which gather information on the basis of national origin or religion. Don't build the wall; instead, abolish the welfare state, and then the only people trying to immigrate into our country will be those immigrants who still believe in freedom. Immigrants come here because of the limited economic opportunity we have left, the limited civil liberties we have left, and the acceptable material quality of life. They don't come for the welfare state; some may receive benefits but applying for them is dangerous because it risks deportation. Not only do undocumented immigrants fear being identified if they apply for government assistance; they can also be outed simply by being carded for trying to enjoy a beer or a cigarette. In order to reduce this burden on undocumented immigrants (who more than refund the cost of welfare by contributing so much underpaid labor effort to our economy), cease requiring driver's licenses in order to render the issue of licensing undocumented immigrants moot, and urge tobacco and alcohol sellers to cease carding people who are obviously over 18 or 21. Undocumented immigrants may impose a welfare cost, but those costs should not be enjoyed by citizens either because they are unconstitutional. All immigrants – documented and undocumented – and all citizens alike, should be eligible to receive aid from mutual aid organizations and international charity and relief organizations, but nobody should receive unconstitutional benefits from the federal government (but allow state and local governments to provide social safety nets). Leave undocumented immigrants free to access health services at hospitals, without being required to participate in any federal program in order to do so. We cannot expect immigrants to come to America for freedom, if we don't have any freedoms anymore. If the current administration wants to “promote legal immigration”, then it should give amnesty to all non-violent undocumented immigrant currently in the country, and open as many ports of entry as possible, so that as many people as possible can come in and declare asylum, instead of being funneled through dangerous parts of the desert where they could be killed by gangs, wild animals, or die from heat, starvation, thirst, or sickness. Support the continuation of “sanctuary states” and “sanctuary cities”, but not in their current form; these areas should be established through nullifying unauthorized federal immigration policies, not through securing funds from the federal government in order to operate them. Urge state governments, and the people, to supply assistance to immigrants as they see fit; in regard to housing, education, and other needs. Cease requiring immigrants to have a Social Security Number (SSN) in order to work; this increases the likelihood that welfare and identity fraud will be committed, it doesn't decrease it.

21. Abolish or Reform the Census, and Make Tax Burdens Equal
     Census takers should not ask whether someone is a citizen, unless replying “no” can make them an outlaw, and thus subject to neither the federal government's legal protections nor its immigration and citizenship laws. Abolish the census, and empower state governors to enjoin census takers from administering the census, until such time as it can be made to exclude all questions which the Constitution does not permit it to include. Remove all questions from the census aside from the number of persons in each household, and/or their name(s). Prevent presidential administrations from proposing policy regarding what questions the census should include; policy-making regarding the contents of the census should be determined by Congress, while the executive branch's authority in regard to the census should be limited to carrying it out. Propose legislation requiring the set of census questions to be approved two or three times in the five years prior to the turn of each decade. Urge residents to refrain from participating in the 2020 census whether it includes unconstitutional questions or not. Consider abolishing the census if it cannot be drastically reformed and simplified so as to protect the identity, personal information, and safety of non-violent people (whether they are here with permission or not). Urge citizens to use non-violent resistance against census takers, and to either vacate their premises when a census taker arrives; or else to politely report the number of people living there, while insisting that they do not legally have to provide any more answers, and insisting that the census taker cease trespassing on their property. Oppose participation in the census on the grounds that the collection of census information does not promote one of its main original purposes – that is, to ensure that all people across the country both: 1) bear an equal burden of taxation; and 2) equally enjoy the benefits of government spending – and those burdens and benefits are nowhere near equal among the states. Ensure that tax burdens and receipts are equal across the country by: 1) either equalizing regional subsidies, or else eliminating them entirely; and by 2) allowing states receiving less from the federal government than they pay in taxes, to become sovereign independent nations if they wish to do so.

22. Devolve Entitlements to the States
     The authority to make policy regarding medical issues and retirement was never duly delegated to the federal government by the states. Until such time as a constitutional amendment can be passed which formally authorizes the federal government to do that, support legislation which would devolve the responsibility to address those issues (that is, the “entitlements”; Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security) back to the states, or to the people, where they belong. To do so, support “New Federalism” -type policies, block grants, and other ways of devolving responsibilities to the states. Bypass the issues of immigrant Social Security numbers, and what the retirement age should be, by ceasing to require S.S. participation in order to work, and by phasing-out the Social Security system as soon as possible (and transferring its authorities to the states). Do this by either: 1) making participation in the system either fully optional; 2) allowing people under a certain age to opt-out; 3) allowing people to receive already-accrued funds at any age; and/or 4) allowing young people to choose whether to opt-into the system as they enter the workforce for the first time. As long as the Social Security system continues to exist, oppose increasing the retirement age, and enact meaningful taxation and budgetary reform in order to avoid means-testing Social Security for income. Either abolish and phase-out the Social Security system, or make it fully optional for everyone except federal employees.

23. Achieve Free Health Care Through Free Markets
     Create a sufficiently regulated (but not centrally regulated) free interstate market in health care goods and services, and in health insurance; using price competition to cause health prices to naturally lower over time, resulting in increased affordability of health care and insurance. Repeal the Affordable Care Act and the individual health insurance purchase mandate, replacing them with either: 1) a “Medicare for All Who Want It” or “Medicare For All, But Opt-In” -type program which allows states, cooperatives, and people alike to participate on a voluntary basis; or 2) an end to federal involvement in issues pertaining to the health of people besides federal workers. Establish a truly optional public option, not a mandatory requirement to purchase insurance. In order to make a public option truly optional – and in order to allow transition periods to exist without cost to the taxpayer - leave people free to refrain from purchasing health insurance, and do not tax them for refraining from purchasing health insurance.  In order to address the costs which would be incurred from treating people who lack the ability to pay – and in order to help make health insurance unnecessary - encourage nurses and doctors (and health care and insurance providers of all kinds) to sign employment contracts and/or insurance forms guaranteeing that they will not deny treatment to people based on their inability to pay (as per the Hippocratic Oath). Leave all charity organizations, mutual aid societies, and voluntary associations totally free to provide medical assistance to people regardless of citizenship status; but constitutionally, states - not the federal government - should be in the business of administering public services pertaining to medicine. The only authority the federal government should exercise to regulate health insurance, should be to prevent states from passing laws that favor their own domestic production of health goods and services (for example, laws which unfairly prohibit buying health insurance policies from out of state). Help make health insurance portable, and equally affordable for unemployed and employed people alike, by: 1) either significantly decreasing, or abolishing, the federal tax credit to employers for providing health insurance; and 2) encouraging 46 states to legalize the interstate sale and purchase of health insurance (as long as those insurance policies do not violate state law), which will entice more health insurance companies to move into new states, providing more options (and more affordable plans) to consumers. Do not authorize the federal government to negotiate drug prices; instead, stop encouraging a high-price environment by giving drug developers monopolistic patents in the first place (or else drastically reduce the 14-year patent term for pharmaceuticals, and do the same for medical devices). Tax the profits from sales of medical devices and medications, but do not impose sales taxes on ordinary medications. Consider imposing luxury taxes on medical device sales and other expensive medical items, but only if significant taxation reform (i.e., taxation of monopolies and unimproved land value) is not enacted. Making medications and medical devices more affordable, will make them more widespread, and this will have the effect of reducing malpractice lawsuits, because more hospitals and health care providers having more access to treatment options, will result in more options for patients, and a lower chance that a patient can rightfully claim his doctors didn't use all the tools available to them to help him get better. Decrease the rate at which health providers are taxed, by: 1) allowing nurses and doctors to deduct expenses from their taxes which they incur in providing uncompensated treatment; and 2) making non-profit health providers totally untaxed (thus providing a welcoming environment for non-profit health alternatives to proliferate, reducing the need to eliminate for-profit health insurance through legislation). Prohibit for-profit health insurance, but only for companies receiving public funds (and/or privileges or protections) and refuse to abide by the taxation and regulation levels which the public requires of them in exchange for public support. Consider supporting any and all legislative efforts to increase access to H.S.A.s (Health Savings Accounts). Urge the public to educate themselves on vaccines and antibiotics; because: 1) viruses are not alive but bacteria are, and antibiotics therefore do not treat viral infections; and 2) vaccines are preventative measures rather than cures, so they are useless at best and dangerous at worst if they are administered to someone who may already have the ailment against which he is being vaccinated. Patients should be told not to get a vaccine unless and until they have been tested for the ailment they're considering getting vaccinated for, and have been found to be free of that ailment; otherwise, a vaccination will not do any good for that particular person if they have that ailment.

24. Honor the Rights to Work, Unionize, Strike, and Boycott
     Laws like the Card Check bill and Right-to-Work laws may appeal to Democrats and Republicans, but they aren't necessary, nor are they helpful. These laws only seem necessary because outdated 80-year-old federal laws (which shouldn't exist) make them seem necessary. Protect the right of concerted activity within the workplace; and protect the rights to unionize, and to engage in strikes and boycotts without asking the government for permission. Amend the 1935 Wagner act, and repeal the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act, in a manner which: 1) leaves unions free to prompt negotiation with management even if they do not receive a majority of votes in a union election; and 2) leaves unions free to begin or join any strike or boycott, without getting permission from the National Labor Relations Board. Allow individual unions to choose whether to make the results of union votes public (or “public” to workers) instead of secret. Neither employers and unions should be free to subject workers to propaganda (whether pro-union or anti-union), nor free to convince workers to sign documents they don't understand. That is why Card Check -type legislation should be opposed; unions should not be free to convince workers to sign a document without informing them that that document authorizes a union to represent them if it gets majority support. Only support Right-to-Work -type legislation if states refuse to require employers to inform prospective employees that they will be expected to join a union as a condition of continued employment. Make union membership fully voluntary in both the private and public sectors, encourage the existence of multiple unions in each workplace, and oppose any legal restrictions which would prevent a worker from belonging to more than one union at a time. Urge states to consider passing corporate laws requiring at least half of the board members of publicly assisted corporations to be composed of workers and/or consumers/clients. Propose legislation which would tax the income of employees of publicly assisted companies according to the difference between C.E.O. pay and average worker pay. Oppose efforts to increase the federal minimum wage, as this wage law chiefly applies to federal workers, not all workers, and is routinely overridden by state minimum wage laws. Make it unnecessary to increase the minimum wage, by making currently received wages more valuable in the first place; by increasing the purchasing power of the dollar through meaningful taxation and budgetary reform. Use a different metric for unemployment; U6 should be used instead of U3 because it reflects a larger and more diverse set of unemployed, non-employed, and underemployed people (aside from solely those who have enrolled in government unemployment benefits). Do not allow public sector unions to spend money on political campaigns nor causes, unless and until taxpayers - and workers not consenting to their union representation – no longer fund unions with which they don't wish to associate.

25. Reform or Abolish Public Schools
     The federal government never had the authority to regulate education formally delegated to it by the states. Propose bills which would immediately abolish the U.S. Department of Education, and permanently prohibit the federal government from regulating or running schools. On higher education: end all government student loan programs (F.A.F.S.A., etc.), while forgiving all student debt. Support a nationwide boycott of public colleges and universities for at least one year, in order to drastically reduce the cost of tuition for future students. On primary education: children under 18 should not be expected to learn and focus in school, when there is a major shooting every 7 or 8 days in America, as well as 24 reported molestations in school every school day. Public education should be immediately abolished, unless and until all five of the following goals are achieved: 1) Taxpayers cease paying for the legal defense of unionized public school teachers charged with molesting students; 2) all public middle schools and high schools should offer optional gun training courses for students; 3) all public schools have adequate, trustworthy, transparent, accountable, and independent security protection; and 4) all public schools establish an admission birthdate of May 15th rather than late August; and 5) all public high schools split into two campuses. Points 4 will assign class-years to students for late August classes based on whether their birthday occurred on or after their previous grade's graduation day in the spring of the same year. Point 5 will facilitate the devotion of more resources to courses that teach potentially dangerous trade skills which freshmen and sophomores should not be exposed to, while juniors and seniors are more likely to drive than younger students and will need more parking at their campus. Points 4 and 5, taken together, will help ensure that (unless a student is pushed forward a year) students won't turn 16 and become eligible to drive until they've finished sophomore year, and students won't turn 18 and become voting-age adults until they've finished senior year. These two points will also help prevent the risks associated with students under and over the age of 16 interacting too much socially; while bypassing the risk that this policy could limit the ability of children over 16 to provide rides to school to children under 16, by separating under-16 campuses from over-16 campuses.

26. Reform Laws on Rape, Kidnapping, and Ages of Consent
     Less than one out of four rapes are reported, and less than one out of 200 rapists serves prison time. Support the #MeToo movement by enacting sweeping reforms at multiple levels of government to ensure the full right to hold rapists, kidnappers, workplace sexual harassers, and other facilitators of sexual abuse and harassment, responsible and accountable for their crimes. Urge all units of government to (if necessary) amend the legal definition of rape so as to avoid including the word “assent”; because consent and assent are not the same thing, and lowering the standard to assent could risk legalizing the act of continuing sex after a person has tried to resist or communicate lack of consent but has given up trying to do so. Urge state legislatures to pass laws ensuring that persons making accusations of rape have no legal obligation to prove that they attempted to physically resist or verbally object; a traumatized person will not always be able to remember these details - such as how hard they tried to verbally object or physically resist - nor be able to prove them with physical evidence. Oppose any proposals which would require explicit verbal consent to sex, or physical paper contracts or waiver forms; but allow consenting adults to make such contracts if they please (unless the sexual acts permitted by such contracts authorize irreversible traumas likely to lead to torture, enslavement, or death). Encourage more state legislatures to shorten and repeal their statutes of limitations against reporting sexual assaults, rape, and sexual harassment. In order to reduce the risk that state prosecutors will fail accusers of rape, sexual abuse, and kidnapping, allow private attorneys to write-off the expenses of representing such accusers on their taxes if those accusers are unable to hire them for normal rates. Offer private attorneys incentives to represent rape and domestic abuse accusers, instead of supporting Violence Against Women Act (V.A.W.A.) -type legislation; and propose bills which would repeal either the remainder of the 1994 Clinton omnibus crime bill besides V.A.W.A., or else the entire Violent Crime Control and Enforcement Act of 1994 (i.e., the Clinton crime bill). Support repealing the “Clinton crime bill” (which could just as easily be called the Biden crime bill) on the grounds that it regards boot camps as not only a less-abusive alternative to prisons (which is questionable), but also as a panacea cure for all problems, even teenage delinquency. Allow juveniles to be in solitary confinement, but strictly limit this to juveniles who routinely or unpredictably present risks of life and limb to themselves and/or to others. Acknowledge that rape of men by men in our prisons is a serious problem, and consider several possible solutions to this including: 1) better protection; 2) increased inmate access to the legal means to file charges against attackers (whether those attackers are inmates, prison guards, or someone else); 3) increased use of solitary confinement for adult inmates; or 4) relocation of prisons to pristine rural locations from which it would be not only difficult to escape but also pointless (modeling our prison systems after that of Norway). Fight child trafficking by ending the culture of sending troubled teens to boot camps on trash T.V. shows, and filing criminal charges against all operators of abusive teen boot camps such as W.W.A.S.P.S.. End physical and sexual abuse in teen boot camps, as well as in I.C.E. custody, and in public schools, and in the court systems. In order to help decrease the risk that juveniles will be sexually or physically abused while in the custody the justice system, end the school-to-prison pipeline while imposing severe punishments on judges and law enforcement officers who participate in schemes to put juveniles (as well as adults) in prison for profit. Propose constitutional amendments which would formally authorize the federal government to restrict states' authorities to set ages of consent which lie outside of a predetermined set of ranges, such that: 1) the tobacco purchase age stay at 18 nationwide; 2) the alcohol purchase age may not be set any higher than 21 nor any lower than 18; 3) the minimum ages to work and drive may not be set any higher than 16 nor any lower than 14 (without strict and transparent guarantees of supervision, a ban on working in venues normally reserved for adults, and a limitation on the number of days which a child may work per year); 4) all states must prohibit and penalize parents, tattoo artists, piercing artists, and all persons who encourage and/or facilitate children under 16 to get tattoos or intimate piercings (modeling such legislation off of similar laws passed by Minnesota and Wales), and also prohibit children under 16 from becoming apprentice piercers and tattoo artists; 5) no state may set a minimum age for marriage any higher than 18, nor any lower than 16; and 6) no state may set the voting age - nor the age to participate in a legal contract aside from employment – any higher than 18, nor any lower than 16. Additionally: 7) the federal age of sexual consent increases from 12 to either 15 or 16; and 8) state “Romeo and Juliet laws” be restricted so as to prohibit sex between minors age 12-17 whose age difference is greater than two years (Points 7 and 8 will close what I call the "interstate kidnapping incentive program", the federal age of consent law which allows people age 16-20 to avoid penalty for transporting younger children, provided that the younger children are no more than four years younger, and they cross state lines in the process). Recommend that the entire nation come together to set standards regarding accountability for public officials who fail to provide justice to the victims of rape and kidnapping; and evaluate whether the police, the prison system, G.A.L.s (Guardians Ad Litem), Child Protective Services, or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, can be trusted while retaining custody of our children; and then, either abolish or strictly limit the powers of any and all agencies failing to pass national standards. Urge courts to stop being lenient on people who sexually abuse children on account of the abusers being the biological parents or relatives of they children they abused, and under no circumstances allow convicted abusers to retain custody of children. Strongly recommend a thorough investigation of Ghislaine Maxwell and everyone whose name appears in Jeffrey Epstein's black book and/or his Lolita Express flight log; and demand a thorough investigation of “Pizzagate” and the activities of James Alefantis and John and Tony Podesta.

27. Allow Abortion, But Don't Subsidize It
     Roe v. Wade is not “the law of the land” on abortion; Planned Parenthood v. Casey is. Roe v. Wade didn't “give us the right to abortion”; we were born with the right to abortion, as part of our rights to privacy, personal freedom, individual liberty, and personal bodily integrity. But having a right to abortion, does not necessarily mean you have the right to demand a free abortion paid for by taxpayer money. Keep abortion “legal”, but do not regulate nor require legal permission for abortions before the third trimester. Consider abortion a natural human right, whether or not Roe v. Wade “is overturned”; it has already been overturned because its very nature sealed its fate and destroyed itself. Roe v. Wade actually allows states to pass restrictions on abortion, as long as those restrictions can be explained as necessary and appropriate. Roe v. Wade never guaranteed abortion as a right, and it is a harmful decision which gave states free rein to trod on the natural human right of abortion. Protect abortion as a natural right by urging the public to educate themselves on the Ninth Amendment; its meaning and purpose (namely, to protect our rights to do things without asking or paying the government for permission, permits, and licenses). Do not pay for abortion with taxpayer money; but allow taxation for abortion if the organization being taxed receive public funds, supports, or privileges. Leave people and voluntary associations free to pool money together to pay for people's abortions, but prohibit the existence of public state funds for the purposes of providing abortions.  Repeal the Hyde Amendment, but advocate for its repeal on the grounds that it allows public funding of abortion in any cases, not on the grounds that it prohibits public funding of abortion in some cases. Even medically necessary abortions (such as to save the life of the mother) can be paid for through fully voluntary means; and taxing pro-lifers and politicizing the affairs of such groups and funds, only risks that opponents of abortion will insist that their opinions must be included in public policy as compensation. Keep abortion free and legal, by “un-legalizing it”; that is, de-politicizing it, and leaving people free to seek affordable alternatives to publicly funded abortion in the market, private sector, charity and non-for-profit sectors, etc.. Leave people totally free to seek abortions, unless they are in the third trimester of pregnancy; that is, set a late cutoff between the second and third trimesters instead of an early one, so that nobody is unjustly delayed to six months gestation by legal waiting periods for seeking abortions. Prohibit infanticide and third-trimester abortions, but leave first and second trimester abortions unrestricted. A human fetus is both alive and human, but it should not be considered an independent person or a human being unless it has been born. If a fetus is not wanted by its mother, then the government has no right to interfere in the mother's decision to terminate the pregnancy, because in order to do something about it, the government would have to violate the mother's rights to bodily autonomy and physical integrity within the perimeters of her body. Babies have been born and saved as early as four months gestation, but that should not be taken as a cutoff for being able to survive outside the womb because few babies born that early survive. Support a third-trimester cutoff; criminalize “aborting” fetuses in the third trimester, because this is infanticide and cannot be done without partially delivering the baby first (when fully delivering it would likely result in its birth). Support pressing criminal charges against all nurses and doctors who kill babies born alive as the result of failed abortions; and who commit negligent manslaughter by allowing such babies to die on medical tables, in trash cans, or in medical waste disposal receptacles. Keep abortion free, legal, and safe; but do not publicly encourage people to get abortions, and aim for fewer abortions, not more, by allowing people to purchase contraceptives without getting a doctor's permission, and by empowering people who could become pregnant to protect themselves from kidnapping, rape, unwanted sexual advances that could lead to rape, and abusive marriages.

28. Reform Marriage Licensing, Divorce, and Custody Laws
     Marriage should be considered a freedom, but not a legal right or privilege. As much as possible, make marriage free for all consenting adults, regardless of sexual orientation, and provided that they are over 16, 17, or 18 (allowing states to decide which age, barring some better and constitutional proposal which would aim to set one of those as a nationwide minimum age for marriage). Additionally, strictly limit, and in most cases prohibit, the marriage of minors under the age of 16; and limit the ability of the federal government and family law courts to intercede in divorce proceedings in a way that increases the likelihood that biological children could be legally abducted without any reasonable suspicion of child abuse. Same-sex couples should have every right to marry as heterosexual couples do, but that should not mean that other people in society ought to be expected or required to pay taxes to government agencies that confer legal privileges upon legally married couples, which are not equally enjoyed by couples who have not sought government approval for the recognition of their relationship. marriage between consenting adults into a privilege. The end of discrimination in marriage licensing on the basis of marriage partner's sexual orientation was a step in the right direction, but now same-sex couples have a legal relationship which can be regulated by the government, and that is a problem which has to be remedied. Urge the approximately 40 states in our Union which do not recognize common-law marriage, to legalize common-law marriage, in a manner which either: 1) requires the state to either recognize the marriage and otherwise refrain from supporting it; or else 2) requires the state to refrain from requiring licenses and permits, and from charging fees therefor, for any consenting adults seeking to get married. Allow states to require or prohibit venereal disease testing before marriage, but do not allow states to require religious, ethnic, nor racial tests nor prohibitions upon marriage. Propose a constitutional amendment authorizing the federal government to prohibit states from setting minimum ages required for marriage above 18 and below 16; but also urge Congress to consider passing a constitutional amendment which would choose either 16, 17, or 18, and make it the nationwide minimum marriage age on a permanent basis. Urge the governors of Texas, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, and other states plagued with legal or illegal child marriage, to take immediate action to take custody of children married against their will, and to invalidate all marriages which include or included participants under 16 (without regard to the supposed need to honor religious traditions; and without regard to the supposed need to honor all marriages which have resulted in the birth of children, unless both partners are over 14, and no more than two years apart in age, and both partners have permission from their parents to do so). Urge all states to prohibit family law courts from interceding in divorce proceedings to attempt to take biological children into custody in cases in which no physical or sexual abuse has been alleged. If the activities in which the federal government engages in pursuit of enforcing Social Security Title IV-D (child support) cannot become much more transparent and accountable to the public, and immediately, then propose bills which would either abolish S.S. Title IV-D, or else strictly limit or revoke its powers to take biological children into custody.

29. End the War on Drugs and Abolish the F.D.A.
     It is not enough to say that we have “legalized marijuana” if the government is still taxing it and regulating it; that is not what true freedom looks like. Even if marijuana prices go down as a result of decriminalization efforts (and they have been going down), taxing dispensaries' marijuana sales will never result in outbidding black-market marijuana sellers, and that means that government sponsored dispensaries are bound to fail. Make marijuana fully legal by fully decriminalizing all purchase, sale, and use of marijuana and cannabis products; and by fully decriminalizing, I mean stop requiring permission and payment from the government in order to do it, because if you do it without permission it's still illegal. Urge states to prohibit the taxation of marijuana sales, and to prohibit the regulation of the use of marijuana by adults (excepting minors who need it for medical purposes). Support freeing all incarcerated people convicted of non-violent drug offenses, as part of legalizing marijuana. Allow medical marijuana dispensaries to give money to political campaigns, but prohibit those dispensaries from receiving taxpayer assistance (unless they are prepared to submit to high taxes and strict regulation). Remove all forms of cannabis – as well as alcohol, opioids, heroin, 18-MC, ibogaine, and others – from the list of Schedule I substances under the Controlled Substances Act (because they have known medical uses, while Schedule I is reserved for drugs that have no medical use). Keep deadly drugs such as fetanyl and krokodil illegal, and hold pharmaceutical company C.E.O.s accountable for producing medications containing fetanyl. Repeal all laws which impede medical testing on all psychedelic and hallucinogenic drugs not likely to result in severe harm or death. We can never know how many medical options we have available to us, if the government will not allow sufficient testing on harmless drugs that alter our brain chemistry. People who are dying, and have been told multiple times that they have no options, should have “the right to try” experimental medications that could either kill them or save them, and “the right to die” if their last-ditch medication doesn't happen to work, or if they see no point in going on and want to be euthanized to prevent further suffering. The F.D.A. (Food and Drug Administration) will talk all about how it saves people by approving new medications, but it will never tell you how many people died waiting for a life-saving drug to be legally approved. End the War on Drugs; by: 1) fully legalizing harmless psychedelic drugs that people take to facilitate empathy and social interaction; and 2) getting rid of the moral hazard that comes when we put too much trust in the F.D.A., falsely believing that if there is a product on the shelves, then it must be safe, because “how else could it have gotten there unless the F.D.A. approved it?” We should never trust the government to be more responsible than we are, when it comes to whether the products we use in our homes and feed to our children, are safe.

30. Infrastructure, Roads, Driver Licensing, Transportation, and the Post Office
     Drastically reduce the budget of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and consider abolishing it. The existence of such a department (as with the energy and commerce departments) only risks distorting the market for alternative forms of transportation (and the fuel sources that power them) that stand to revolutionize the way we travel, even if outdated forms of travel are swept away in the process. Recognize the freedom of locomotion (travel) as a natural human right which the Ninth Amendment implicitly recognizes, and recognize that governments do not have the right to impede our travel unless there is reasonable suspicion that we will harm someone unless immobilized. Revoke the federal government's authority to issue or deny international passports; recognize that the states are rightfully sovereign and independent; and allow states, the United Nations, and international relief agencies, offer solutions to the need for stateless people, undocumented people, and outlaws, to travel freely. The federal government's authority to “Establish Post Offices and Post Roads” arguably doesn't expressly authorize the government to build those roads in the first place. The building of interstate roads is arguably the federal government's authority, as long as the burdens of taxation and the benefits of spending are shared equally across the land; however, this does not necessarily guarantee that the contractors which federal government hires will always be the best equipped, most responsible, or most affordable to do the job. The federal government should only “establish” post offices and post roads by recognizing them, not necessarily by building them or running them. State and local governments should enforce federal policies whenever those policies are constitutional and would more appropriately be administered by local rather than central authorities. Protect the freedom of the American free trade zone, and promote the regulation of interstate commerce, by prohibiting states from passing laws which unfairly favor their own in-state road construction companies over out-of-state companies. For people over the age of 16, prohibit states from charging fees for licenses to drive. Allow states to license minors to drive as young as 14, but recommend limitations, such as requiring adult supervision whenever realistically possible, and/or requiring that the minor only drive to work and school, and/or requiring that the driving education take place outside the context of public schooling.

Written on August 5th through 9th, 2019
Published on August 9th, 2019
Edited and Expanded on August 10th and 11th, 2019