bil canfield cartoon

Comey vs. Crypto: The Last Banzai Charge

At the end of World War II, Second Lieutenant Hiro Onoda of the Imperial Japanese Army dismissed rumors of his country's surrender, fading into the Philippine jungle to fight on.  He held out for 29 years before, still dressed in his dilapidated uniform, he surrendered his sword to his former commanding officer in 1974.

Every time an American politician or bureaucrat floats some cockamamie new scheme to ban, handicap or regulate strong encryption of computer data, I think of Onoda.

The Crypto Wars began in 1991 when Phil Zimmerman released the first version of PGP ("Pretty Good Privacy"), a tool that made strong encryption available to the masses worldwide. The wars essentially ended at the same time.  A few bitter dead-enders held out until the mid-1990s, firing off silly proposals for programs like the Clipper Chip and "key escrow," but it quickly became apparent to most that the strong encryption genie isn't going back into the bottle.

So here comes FBI director James Comey, waving a rusty samurai sword and screaming "banzai!" as he once again charges the enemy lines, 24 years after his side's defeat.

Testifying before the US Senate's intelligence committee in early July,  Comey trotted out the latest alleged threat --  Islamic State militants using strong crypto to protect their communications -- and complained that "[i]n recent months ... we have on a new scale seen mainstream products and services designed in a way that gives users sole control over access to their data."

He says that like it's a bad thing. It isn't.

He envisions a "solution" in which software and communications providers use strong encryption that works, except when Comey wants to read your email. Even if empowering him to read your email wasn't a very bad idea, no such solution exists.

A back door for James Comey is a back door for everyone else, too. If the encryption is broken, it's broken.

The bad guys will always have encryption. Encryption is math and computer code. It's free, it's in the wild, and it will remain so. If American companies hobble their encryption, those who don't like their encryption hobbled will get good crypto elsewhere. Shikata ga nai ("it can't be helped").

As for the rest of us, Comey tends toward the "if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear" line. Oddly, I never hear that line coming from him when Wikileaks, Chelsea Manning or Edward Snowden reveal HIS organization's secrets.

We use encryption for the same reason we put our snail mail in envelopes: We only want it to be read by the intended recipient. Dealing with that is Comey's job. Catering to his voyeurism with "back doors" isn't our obligation.

Thomas L. Knapp, Director and Senior News Analyst
William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism


Panicked reaction to Trump

It should be obvious to your readers, by now, that those who we are allowed to vote for have already been chosen by the likes of the Bilderberg Group, a group which until recently the mainstream media denied even existing.  Many of these pre-selected candidates have compromised backgrounds so that when push comes to shove will vote against the best interests of this country.

I have no love for Mr. Trump. McCain has repeatedly tried to get us into a nuclear war with Russia. Also, in McCain's panicked escape from his jet on the Forrestal he released a bomb on to the flight deck which ultimately exploded in the flames killing many of the fire fighters. And don't forget that McCain should be in jail for his involvement with the Keating Five banking scandal soon after he took office!  Trump seems to be the only person running who has questioned our open borders   and the release by our own government of convicted murderers and rapists. If you don't have borders you don't have a nation. We are the only civilized nation that refuses to secure our borders. Why? So Trump keep up the fight so we can continue to see the knee jerk reaction of the both political parties and the main stream media.


Joseph DuPont
Towanda, Pennsylvania


Give yourself a $928 Million tax cut – Vote NO on Prop 101

On August 25 the voters of Phoenix can give themselves a 928 million dollar tax cut by simply voting NO on ballot Proposition 101. Way back in 1980 Arizona passed legislation which limits spending for sub-units of government like the City of Phoenix. However … there was a big loophole that allowed Phoenix to set its own limit (which means no limit) if they took the issue to a vote of the people. Phoenix big spenders have chosen to do this approximately every four years ever since 1980. Let’s stop the runaway spending now. Vote NO on Prop 101 and reestablish fiscal sanity.

Roy Miller

How Muslim’s treat Infidels (non-Muslims) as Muslim’s become the majority

Muslims follow the Quran (their holy book).  Jihading Muslim’s follow the Quran more closely than non-Jihading Muslims.  Muslims’ goal is 100 percent Muslim population.  There are different types of Infidels.  The term Kafir is a synonym for Infidel.  However the Dhimmi is a subset of Infidels/Kafirs that are allowed to pay Jizya (protection fee) and thus have protected status.  The Dhimmi have reduced freedoms and/or cultural benefits such as not being allowed to vote, give testimony or have weapons as they should be made to "feel themselves subdued" (Quran 9:29).  So what happens to you if you’re an Infidel/Kafir but not a Dhimmi?  Well, your life is in danger as Muslims are influenced to kill Infidels/Kafirs (Quran 9:123) if there isn’t a reason in the Quran to keep them alive.  If you’re in ISIS controlled territory you probably won’t live long but if you are in a place with fewer Jihading Muslims, you might live longer.  You might be wondering, “Show me a modern day example of Jizya being paid”.

Here is an example:

If all Americans do a small part, we can keep our way of life our forefathers made for us and fought and died for.


John Smith


Police Violence: An Anti-Obscenity Proposal

It's not surprising when Ed Mullins leaps to the defense of police officers accused of murder or other criminal abuses. After all, he's president of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, a New York City police union. Protecting cops is his job.

In a July 14 column for the New York Post, Mullins decries the city's $5.9 million settlement with the family of Eric Garner, who died at the hands – literally, from a "chokehold" – of officer Daniel Pantaleo. The settlement, wrote Mullins, is "obscene."

I agree with Mullins. It IS obscene. The taxpayers of New York City should never have been forced to compensate Garner's family for his death. Those taxpayers didn't kill Eric Garner. Daniel Pantaleo did.

Of course, Mullins wouldn't agree with how I put that. He doesn't call the settlement obscene because he wants Pantaleo to pay. He objects because taxpayer money paid to Pantaleo's victims can't be paid to members of the Sergeants Benevolent Association.

Still, I have to credit Mullins with inspiring my proposal for consideration by his association, by New York City, and by police unions and city governments everywhere: Insurance.

Yes, insurance. Cities should require every police officer in their employ to carry a $10 million liability policy for torts inflicted while on duty. Prosecuting cops for crimes committed in uniform is always a dicey proposition, but there's no reason the civil end can't work like any other insurance situation. There's a claim. If it's denied, there's a lawsuit, a verdict or a settlement, and the insurer coughs up any damages instead of sticking the taxpayers with the check.

With unionized departments, of course, the insurance requirement will have to be negotiated into the labor contract. As will a clause making uninsurable cops subject to immediate dismissal from the force and ejection from the union.

If that sounds like a bitter pill for an Ed Mullins to swallow, here's the sugar coating: There's no reason the unions can't provide the insurance policies themselves: Collect the premiums as part of each member's union dues and set them aside in trust for rainy days when claims get paid. Eventually – if the actuaries get it right – profits will flow into the union's general fund. That prospect should warm any union president's heart.

An insurance scheme of this kind will also incentivize the thin blue line to police its own. If insurance premiums go up, cops and union reps will know which comrades to have a "come to Jesus" talk with.

Pandemic police violence is a problem that will be solved, one way or another. This is a way for Mullins to stop being part of the problem and start being part of the solution.

Thomas L. Knapp
Director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism


Open Letter to Democrats in Congress

No to the Iran deal – are Democrats Muslims?

I am writing to let you know that I am diametrically opposed to your approving the Nuclear Agreement with Iran.  Theirs is a history of not being truthful.  They do not have to keep their word. If you are NOT another Muslim, they can lie to you with impunity!

Here are some passages from their Qur’an:
Source #1 – The Holy Qur’an/Koran
Qur’an (16.106) Essence-some circumstances compel a Muslim to lie
Qur’an (9:3) Essence-the dissolution of oaths with pagans is acceptable
Qur’an (2:225) Essence-Muslims can break their oaths and lie to gain their perceived greater good

Source #2 – The Hadith (reflections of the sayings, thoughts and principles of the Prophet and his companions)
Bukhari (49:857)Essence –If you invent information, it is not a lie.
Bukhari (84:64-65) Essence- Lying is permissible in order to deceive an enemy.

AND as recently as yesterday they are shouting “Death to America.”  Why are we making deals with a country who is holding American hostages??

AND what about their killing our soldiers in Iraq?  What about their terrorist activities around the world creating chaos.  ARE WE A PATSY??

You know, some popular Democrats such as Harry Reid, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton have acted like Muslims in their dealings with Americans. The Qur’an condones lying if there is a benefit to the liar. i.e., for Harry Reid... Romney did not pay his taxes (it worked, didn’t it?) i.e. from Obama..  “If you like your insurance, you can keep your insurance.”  That lie paid off. 

A stupid person in L.A. showed a video about Mohammed and 4 Americans were killed in Benghazi. i.e. from Hillary Clinton (What difference does it make?)  John Kerry was a traitor to America in the Vietnam War! He knows how to make a deal in America’s favor?  Wake up Democrats!  This is not your father’s democratic party.

Are Democrats Muslims?

Rose M. Sampieri


President of the United States fulfilling his oath?

Somewhat recently a Draw Mohammad Contest was held in Texas by Pamela of the American Freedom Defense Initiative.  Two Muslims showed up armed like commandos with the intent to murder everyone in attendance.  Thankfully they were killed before accomplishing their goal.  Pamela was exercising her First Amendment (Freedom of Speech) rights in a registered guest only, behind locked doors in a locked building.  A Muslim death threat was made to Pamela.  The U.S. Government did not offer Pamela protection.

Here is the oath of office the POTUS takes:
"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." 

It would seem that the POTUS is not fulfilling his oath of office in two ways. The first way is not offering protection to Pamela.  The second way is allowing enemies of the U.S. Constitution inside our borders.  What should be done about this?

Teri Morgan


Trumpmania may scare establishment into fighting for limited government

pictureJuly is supposed to be a relatively quiet time in Washington, D.C., but alas not this year.

Trumpmania has struck the Capitol, but not the good kind.  Political operatives and pundits are running around town like their hair is on fire trying to get in front of each other attacking the real estate magnate.  What they apparently are too myopic to understand is that every time a Washington, D.C. know-it-all attacks Trump, he goes up in the polls.

Memo to D.C., when you read polls that say that people hate politicians, believe them.  People, particularly those who have been Republican voters in the past, have had enough of being played for fools by the political class.  People really don't like or trust you.  Now, they tolerate their existing Member of Congress the way a new dog owner accept that a puppy is going to mess on the floor, but anyone who doesn't understand that basic truth should have their consultant card revoked.

When you run for office again and again promising that you are going to repeal Obamacare, yet you never really planned on taking the hard but necessary steps to do it, people are going to feel betrayed.

When you run for office saying you are going to fight tooth and nail against Obama's executive amnesty, and then cave in when the President shockingly threatens a veto, don't expect the people you convinced to give you one more chance not to turn away in disgust.

And when you run promising to rein in Obama and then make giving him "an enormous grant of power" through fast track trade authority, the people who believed you get even more incensed.

So yes, believe the polls that say the people don't just dislike politicians in D.C., but in fact find them to be loathsome.

Donald Trump may be a lot of things, but one thing he is not is a fool. 

When a wannabe Presidential candidate attacks him, he will hit them back harder and in a much more personal way, and the public will cheer, because Trump is their proxy, punching the D.C. establishment that has broken faith with the voters in its collective nose.

How can the Republican establishment class win back the voters? 

Pick some big important fights with Obama and legitimately fight them to win.  Be unrelenting in your attacks on Obama's out of control EPA, Iran nuke deal, Internet giveaway, and HUD regulation that threatens to put low-income housing into suburban neighborhoods because Obama thinks they look too white on the census map. Defund these and dozens of other programs and regulations that Obama is using to fundamentally transform the country.  But not only fight, win some of these important issues to show it isn't all just a play acting fraud perpetrated on the nation.

If the Republicans in Congress and by inference the Republican establishment as a whole gets the public rooting for them to win again, it will do wonders to restore faith in our system of government and those who are stewards over it.

If it takes a brash New Yorker to shake up D.C. enough to get them to fight for their survival, then The Donald will have made a huge difference without a ballot ever having been cast.

Rick Manning
President of Americans for Limited Government


Wasted tax dollars – High priced history

Reasonable people would not object to using some public resources to preserve history.  However, reasonable people would expect that all such public funds be used effectively and efficiently.  In the case of one Arizona state agency, that is not happening.

The Arizona Historical Society is a state agency that receives a cash allocation of over three million dollars every year.  That, however, is only a portion of the annual cost to taxpayers, who also pay to maintain six state history museum buildings in Tucson, Tempe, Flagstaff and Yuma. Those costs are hidden since they are not included in the AHS budget. The building costs are buried in the budget for the Arizona Department of Administration which manages and maintains all state owned buildings. The mortgage payment alone on the 80,000 square foot Tempe facility is $1.3 million per year. Therefore, the annual cost of maintaining the half dozen AHS facilities is easily more than the $3 million in cash.

So, what do taxpayers get in return for the five to ten million dollars that the AHS consumes each year?  Not much.  Total attendance at all six history museums was less than 23,000 last year, and attendance has been declining rapidly for the past ten years.  Apparently, each museum visitor costs taxpayers hundreds of dollars.

The AHS does archive documents as well as operate State history museums. However, that function is redundant to the mission of the Arizona State Library, Archives, and Public Records. That state agency also operates a museum at the State Capitol.  Therefore, taxpayers are supporting the overhead for two state agencies that do basically the same thing.

The AHS, with approximately 40 employees, is a top heavy organization with some six figure and near six figure salaries. The director is paid more than the Governor.  The AHS museum in Tempe is especially wasteful.  It has ten state employees, a huge mortgage payment, and received less than 3,400 visitors last year.  That museum in particular has a history of incompetence and inefficiency.  It has received media ridicule with articles such as “The Museum that Couldn’t Think Straight” by Terry Greene Sterling in 1996. 

In addition to being wasteful, the AHS is a rather arrogant state agency. As public records show, it has never had a satisfactory performance review because it refuses to comply with State policies.  State Agencies are reviewed by the Office of the Arizona Auditor General.  The Auditor’s records show that deficiencies identified by past audits and reviews have never been corrected.

Arizona deserves better. The AHS needs to be combined with another, better managed, state agency. It’s redundant management structure and most wasteful museums need to be eliminated.  Taxpayers deserve better performance for the funding they provide to preserve Arizona history.

Dick Zimmermann