This is a generic rant in which I plan to go off about an assortment of things as they pop into my head. Since this will give you an insight into my character, feel free to point and laugh.
I tend to be a social liberal while being a fiscal conservative. This is a generalization. For example, I support gay marriage. It's not for any moral purpose one way or the other. I just think that stable economic household units are good for the economy of my native Iowa.
On the other hand, I'm fully in support of gun ownership. I don't own any guns myself and have no immediate plans to do so, but I can shoot rather accurately. I don't care if the average person has a gun as long as they have been through the proper training and realize that if they do something stupid with the gun they will be punished severely. For example, leaving a gun out without supervision so a kid can get it should be given the highest level of punishment we hand out. Likewise threatening someone with a gun without good cause should be similarly punished.
The punishment idea is another thing where I tend to be a little harsher. Juvenile offenders should be sent to boot camps. At the camp they should be brainwashed to believe that the betterment of Iowa is their main goal in life. On second thought, maybe that should be a high school thing.
Driving laws are another place where punishment should be tougher. Driving under the influence is just shy of being a capital offense. Drunk driving is bad because it increases the likelihood that you will drive wrong. However, driving wrong (while sober) will get you a very small penalty.
I understand that, for economic purposes, we need to keep people driving as much as possible. That's why first offenses are treated more gingerly than second and third offenses. If you feel the need to go fifteen miles per hour over the speed limit a second time, the punishment should be at least five hundred dollars. Such a punishment is probably a good deterrent for third offense speeding.
As for the third offense, there's nothing wrong with a lost license. There is also nothing wrong with weekly work detail. Those ditches aren't going to clean them selves.
I see nothing wrong with community service oriented punishments. I'll come back to community service in a bit.
There is the matter of the worst criminals. Sure, multiple murderers and traitors to the state can be executed. But what about single murderers and meth makers? I say deport them. Put them on work details in Iraq. Dump them in France. Put them in work details in dangerous areas of Iraq. They could check for road-side bombs or something. Doesn't matter, just get rid of them. I especially like the work detail thing.
Back to the community service. I myself am a disabled guy. It sucks. They have me on the dole and I'm back in school. The back in school part is the important thing. I was a productive citizen before I got sick and after a little retraining I will again be a productive citizen. If I couldn't be productive in some way I would probably have killed my self.
The only way I can stand to take the assistance is by knowing that I will get back to being productive and I will give back to the community and the state through taxes and work. I think that is very important. The state should help the needy but only in the manner that helps the needy become productive so they can benefit the state to the best of their ability.
Some people who need assistance can't do as much as I will be able to do. That's just the nature of things. Still, all persons who are receiving aid should be able to show that it is in the state's best interest to help them. In my case I am going back to school and making a real effort to learn to work in a manner that circumvents my new limits. Others may not be able to do this but most people can do something. If they aren't actively involved in their return to the productivity pool they should be performing tasks for the state. Every week, persons on the dole could go down to the county offices and do things like filing or cleaning. Maybe they could answer phones. You don't have to pay them because they are already being paid by being on the dole. Naturally you wouldn't want these duties to interfere with the path to real productivity. On the other hand, having to do some work might reduce some of the fraudulent claims against the system.
We have drug problems here in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Often the arrests involve people from Chicago. As a result, I think we should declare Chicago to be a terrorist state and put them on the Axis of Evil. If you've ever tried to drive there you know just how bad it is.
Chicago has a long terrorist history. Look at Mrs. O'Leary's cow or those gangster guys with machine guns. The St. Valentine's Day Massacre is proof enough of their terrorist legacy. Every March 17th, their river turns green from some chemical thing they do. I think these people are a real threat and must be stopped.
To start with, we should get the old Soviet guys to build a wall around Chicago. They did a good job on the Berlin wall and are out of work currently so we could get them cheap. Once the wall is up we can put a blockade on the lake. That's to keep them from sneaking up into Canada. We don't want Canada mad at us.
When this is all done we can demand a regime change. They won't really be sure what we're talking about and will grow confused. That's good because that's the plan. While they are trying to figure what we're talking about they won't notice that we have built dumping docks up to the side of the wall and are dumping our refuse into the city. (By refuse, I mean garbage, illicit drugs, felons, and hippies.)
Once the refuse has piled high enough we can start covering it with fill dirt. The alternating layers of dirt and garbage will grow gradually into a mound. They have some tall buildings in Chicago so we know when we can stop piling on the trash. You know, when the tallest building is covered.
Thanks to lake-effect snow, our new mound will be a wonderful new ski resort. There will be lake activities during the summer and down-hill skiing in the winter. The only drawback is that it's in Illinois.
Much of the rest of our illicit drugs come through St. Louis, but I'm haven't thought about what to do with them yet. It will probably involve using their big arch thing as a slingshot or something. Hard to say yet.
That's enough for this rant. I think I've annoyed enough people.