Jackley discusses Eric Robert's death sentence

Marty Jackley spoke shortly聽after the death sentence was given to Eric Robert.

I don’t think anyone likes the death penalty, but after brutally killing Ron Johnson while serving an 80 year sentence,聽Eric Robert聽didn’t leave the state much choice.

In my opinion, if聽the risk of keeping Eric Robert alive in prison for life put one more prison guard or officer of the law in danger, it would have been the wrong decision. Actions must have consequences even for those already serving a life sentence.

360 Replies to “Jackley discusses Eric Robert's death sentence”

  1. Troy Jones

    Three comments:

    1) A government powerful enough to kill is too powerful.

    2) I have tears in my eyes as I observe the extreme grief in the eyes of the family of Ron Johnson.

    3) Ron Johnson is more than a “prison guard.” He is a person who was heinously, mercilessly killed and no less a hero than one of our fallen soldiers. Ron Johnson’s name should be said out loud, often, reverently.

      1. Arrowhead

        I wish the world was peaceful but it isn’t. Eric Robert chose his own fate when he wrapped Ron Johnson’s head in plastic wrap and watched him suffocate.

        Cory Heidelberger makes me dissapointed that he spends so much time defending people so evil.

  2. caheidelberger

    Wrong, Bill/Hans: we always have a choice. Don’t try to excuse immoral behavior by saying we couldn’t do anything else. We can hire more guards, tighten security protocols, study ways to treat anger and controlling behavior, and accept the risk of dangerous prisoners as the price of morality. Or we can give in to fear and do a killer’s bidding. You, Bill/Hans, apparently defend taking the easy and immoral way out.

    1. 73*

      Cory,

      Maybe in your world when Eric Robert kills again you plan to personally stop by to explain your position to his widow…

      You make me sick because you never learn from past mistakes.

      1. Bill Fleming

        There is absolutely no excuse for insulting Mr. Heidelburger for arguing for fundamental human dignity and a human being’s inalienable rights. Those are the principles upon which this country was founded, 73*. I feel you owe Cory an apology. There are plenty of things around this set of circumstances that are sickening, but Cory’s opinions and intentions are not among them them.

        1. Anonymous

          hold up BF.

          I’m all in with you for stopping the abuse of coyotes and animals and inocent children but Robert is a horrible human being.

          I feel terrible for Johnson’s family. What a senseless act.

        2. duggersd

          I do not want to put words into your post, but I am guessing you are talking about “unalienable” rights as expressed in the Declaration of Independence. These are rights such as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. However I do not know of any period in History other than the most Modern era in which a large number of people believed that after due process, denying a person of life is outside of the principles this country was founded upon. As a matter of fact, I would suspect most of the people who were involved in the founding of this country believed certain people were deserving of death. George Washington had people executed in his army for desertion. Very few people would argue Robert has not had due process as expressed in the 5th and 14th amendments.
          Also, if we followed Cory’s belief, Robert would try to kill again and if he succeeded, then it would be very difficult indeed to look the family of the victim in the eye and tell that family it is better this way.

  3. duggersd

    1. The death penalty should only be used in extreme cases. This is one. Donald Moeller is another.
    2. Eric Robert has indicated he believes he should be put to death.
    3. Eric Robert has indicated he only wishes he had killed another guard.
    4. Eric Robert has indicated he will kill again.
    5. Sometimes, Cory, you just have to put a mad dog down. More guards are not going to stop this person from trying to kill again. Tighter security will not stop this person from trying to kill again. I do not believe this is a matter of anger. Even if it is, he shows no remorse and no inclination to be helped by “anger control” (I’m already laughing at that one).
    6. If we followed your protocol, would you be willing to look the next victim’s family in the eye and tell them Robert did not deserve death?

    1. larry kurtz

      It would be far cheaper to medicate this convict than to subject the people of South Dakota to the appeals process.

  4. Troy Jones

    Insomniac,

    The Attorney General properly and respectfully used Ron Johnson’s name. Nothing comforts one in grief more than hearing their name said out loud and not referred to as “a prison guard.” As one close to all the people who died with Governor Mickelson, I know the other people’s family cringe when they say “Governor Mickelson and seven others” even though it is understandable. They want to hear the names Roland Dolly, Ron Reed, Dave Birkeland, Dave Hanson, Angus Anson, Roger Hainje, and Ron Becker.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Always about you. huh Troy? Have you not name dropped these poor folks enough?

      The issue is actually about the murder of Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson, not you and not the people you claimed to have known.

      But digress the topic of the rightful punishment of the vicious murderer who took Ron Johnson’s life for your arrogant idea that you are wiser than a sitting judge and that you know better than the wise citizens of South Dakota.

  5. Duh

    Troy you stated: “1) A government powerful enough to kill is too powerful.” I have zero idea what that means. More like a government unable to protect its citizens from physical harm isn’t a government at all. Roberts wasn’t worth RJ’s life that he took, the past girlfriends that he repeatedly beat into submission so he could rape them, the girlfriend who repeatedly got her clothing ripped off is she wouldn’t go to bed naked, the women that he drug around his back yard by their poney tails. The girl that he attacked and put her into her trunk with the goal of raping and murdering her. What on God’s green earth do you mean by that????

    CA. Unbelievable as usual. I sat in on some parts of the sentencing and actually saw the pictures of RJ Johnson, the murder scene, the plastic with blood all over it. I heard testimony that the first blow of the 24 inch pipe broke his neck then how they repeatedly kicked him in the face that it was so swollen that they couldn’t even get the CPR apparatus on. I heard guards cry on the stand decribing how RJ looked. I listened to the unbelievable cries of RJ’s wife for 40 minutes on how his murder changed, no ruined her life and that of her family’s. Go listen to it on argusleader.com!! It was one of the most heart wrenching testimonies that I have ever heard and you discount her feelings and RJ’s life by the worthless drivel that you spew. Roberts was already in for 80 when he took an innocent life on RJ’s birthday.

    Oh, in the back of CA’s mind he then defends the right of a woman to rip the body of a baby out of her own. Congratulations, you have mastered the biggest hypocrisy known to man: Anti-Capital Punishment but Pro Abortion.

    Roberts had zero control over the judge’s decision as that’s exactly what the judge stated, that Roberts’ personal wishes cannot be taken into account and that he was bound by the law. Capital punishment may or may not be a deterrent, but it sure as hell makes more space for the rest of us.

    Bill the only response CA and other like pinhead anti-capital should get is being forced into a room and held down while he views pictures of the murder scene and has to listen to the family’s testimony over and over and over.

    Simply pathetic.

  6. Troy Jones

    Duh,

    We have the ability to protect society and those charged with guarding Eric Robert other than killing him. In history, such was not always the case.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Jones,
      Except you refuse to accept the fact that is NOT the case! Is it totally lost on you that Mr Johnson was in fact a guard at the prison and that we were unable to protect him? What part of his vicious murder do you not understand. You view such only from the safety that your wealth provides you. So, let the rest of America eat cake?

      Read the rest of Mr. Jones comments here:

      http://madvilletimes.com/2011/10/death-sentence-south-dakota-submits-to-murderers-anger-and-controlling-behavior/

      http://madvilletimes.com/2011/10/eric-robert-goading-us-into-suicide-by-state/#comment-35776

      1. BF

        Obviously the prison wasn’t being run in such a way as to prevent what happened. Hopefully whatever went wrong has been corrected. It does no good whatsoever to try to mask the failure of the system to protect Mr. Johnson by using his murderer as a scapegoat. In fact, it’s the best way to ensure that it will happen again.

        1. Stace Nelson

          BF,
          Wow, so what you are saying is that we are all wrong and that it isn’t obvious that the murderer Eric Roberts is personally responsible for viciously murdering Ron Johnson, it is Ron Johnson and his fellow corrections officers’ fault? As they are the system you are blaming for Ron Johnson’s death.

          Please enlighten us, how much more money should we spend (that we don’t have), and freedoms of law abiding citizens curtail, to provide these violent criminals with the freedoms and opportunitys to commit more violent crimes while in prison?

          1. BF

            http://www.corrections.com/news/article/29518-national-report-prompts-changes-in-state-prison-system

            Excerpt:
            “Kaemingk says the NIC consultants had good things to say about South Dakota’s prison system overall, but through staff interviews, tours and emergency simulations, the consultants did find 15 suggestions for improvement.

            Some of those include the following:

            -Conducting a staffing analysis…to ensure each facility has the right amount of staff members.

            -Enhancement of staff safety training…including measures like issuing pocket safety manuals.

            -Relocation of staff panic alarms, so a staff member can access his alarm, without an attacker knowing.

            -Adding staff to prison industries buildings during high-traffic times…to ensure the greatest safety possible.

            -Constructing containers for secure disposal of scrap metal.

            Secretary Kaemingk says all of the 15 new suggestions have been put into action in the prison system already except for one.

            That final change is going to be a more formalized system assessing the risk-level of all jobs within the prison system and comparing a job’s risk with a prisoner’s risk. This is set to be implemented by December.”

            1. BF

              I am assuming you know what the other suggestions were, Mr. Nelson since it is, after all your supposed field of expertise.

              My question to you, sir, is why don’t you spell them out for us instead of browbeating people here who happen to disagree with your half baked, morally dubious take on this situation?

              1. Stace Nelson

                BF, You will have to pardon me if I have a problem with folks so cavalierly tromping on the grave of a good man who was viciously murdered by the criminal you protest is being deprived of inalienable rights.

                If pointing out the obvious is browbeating, then may I suggest an ice pack for your bruised ego?

                The irony of you proclaiming how heinous it is for me pointing out the indictment of your defense of Mr. Robert’s inalienable rights, all the while trampling the grave of Mr. Johnson’s inalienable rights is mite galling.

                In that you are an ardent abortion advocate, and your sensibilities herein are clearly questionable, you will excuse my lack of apology for your contentions they are offended.

                    1. BF

                      To be clear, my position on abortion is consistent with my position on this issue. The government doesn’t have any business making life and/or death decisions on behalf of its citizenry. The right to life is unalienable. That means it comes before the law and is vested in the individual person. This, I thought was actually a conservative (Republican) value. No?

                    2. Stace Nelson

                      Mr Roberts is not entitled to the American taxpayer to take care of him for the rest of his life. You would subvert the law abiding citizen of their life, liberty, and happiness in order to create an entitlement for Mr Roberts.

                      The only thing Mr. Roberts is entitled to at this point is the lawful punishment which he knowingy embraced through his cowardly acts.

                      Personal responsability is a Republican principle. We also believe in justice.

                      Wailing & gnashing of the teeth for Mr. Roberts; however, not one crocadile tear for the aborted innocent child.

  7. Troy Jones

    Eric Robert was in the general population and not a max security setting. Another inmate could do this again today.

    Whether he is killed or locked up in max security, Eric Robert will never kill again. In the last 40 years nobody on death row and only a couple people in max security has killed anyone.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Well as long as it was only a couple people that were killed in max security, and as long as it is was someone else’s family members, and as long as it is someone else’s family member that must guard these criminals, and as long as it is someone else’s family members that must live in fear of these criminals as long as they are alive, small price to pay for liberals to view themselves as enlighted.

  8. Troy Jones

    Duh,

    When I gave me curt response I was ready for bed. I happen to be in a hotel room with my dog who woke me up to go outside. Now I cant go back to sleep.

    I thank Mr Nelson for linking my comments so I don’t have to repeat all my thoughts and it will give some greater depth to them.

    But to directly answer your question, as dugger astutely raised the concept, inalienable rights are unable to be taken away, surrendered, or transferred except in defense of an inalienable right.

    Any killing not in such defense is by definition unjust. My comment is basically giving the government the power to deny an inalienable right is a government too powerful.

    Dugger rightly raised the issue with regard to past use of the death penalty. I dont think the death penalty inherently good or evil. If killing is NECESSARY and there is no other option for protecting another inalienable right, the death penalty is licit. I think this was the case before we had available all of the current incarceration capabilities including cameras etc.

    Now, it is possible to place people like Eric Robert in a max security setting and insure he will not kill again. Thus, in my opinion, with this option denying Eric Robert an inalienable right is no longer necessary. And if it isnt necessary, the government retaing this power to kill is too powerful.

    By the way, I am impressed you were able to observe the heinous details of what he did. My opposition to the DP in no way should be interpreted as either a lack of empathy to the loss of the Johnson’s or lack of being disgusted by Eric Robert or not valuing Ron Johnson’s life.

    It is my temporal and eternal view the right to life is the greatest of all rights and gifts from God. Taking any life is thus the most serious of acts and must have the highest standard before undertaken.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Jones,
      Just because you edict that security and safety at any prison setting is safe for the guards, prison workers, prison doctors, and populace, does not make it so. Especially since you perceive this from the wrong end of the telescope from the safety of your affluent setting.

      To make this statement in light of the immediate terrible circumstances of the vicious murder of corrections officer Ron Johnson, is unbelievable.

      In regards to your complaints that our GOVERNMENT is violating criminals’ inalienable rights to life by the death penalty. Is not liberty also an inalienable right? What would you have in addition to no death penalty for convicted violent murderers? No prison incarceration?

      Criminals are responsible for their criminal acts and the punishments that they receive, not our government. There is no fool proof way to protect innocent people in our society from Eric Roberts. While it may appear so from the wrong end of the telescope. Are we not violating the inalienable rights of real people that we force to take care of the Eric Roberts of our prisons?

  9. Troy Jones

    Mr. Nelson,

    How many times do I have to say society has the legitimate right to do whatever is necessary to protect society proportional to the threat?

    i have never said the prison setting is safe for our guards. In fact it is inherently dangerous, similar to what our police officers face every day. However, the general prison population is known to be significantly riskier than the maximum security setting. Eric Robert was held in the general population and this is where Ron Johnson worked.

    1. Stace Nelson

      …additionally, a judge that was empowered by this great state reviewed this case in detail over the course of days and many hours. He determined after careful consideration of all the facts & law that Robert’s crime and demeanor was such that the death penalty was appropriate on behalf of this state. You claim you support society’s right yet you dispute Robert’s sentence!

      So do you or don’t you support society’s “legitimate right to do whatever is necessary to protect society.”

      A highly trained judge, on behalf of this state, said it is neccessary. Is it not the height of arrogance to now dispute Robert’s rightful sentence after your statement above? Are we to take it that you know better for our state than this judge? Are we to defer to you in all such future cases for your laymen determinations?

  10. Stace Nelson

    Mr. Jones,
    (Hmmmm civil again where there are actial Republicans roaming around?)

    On Madville times you proclaim that we must harbor and protect Roberts for life, vice the death penalty, otherwise WE are depriving him of his inalienable rights. As I pointed out there, we Conservatives believe in PERSONAL RESPONSABILITY and that Roberts is in fact responsible for his own rightful punishment of death in this matter.

    You now point out that prison is not safe, and you know that Roberts has promised to kill again. Max security prisoners do not get taken care of by magic. It requires human interaction; however, you still advocate subverting the inalienable rights of law abiding prison guard, doctor, dentist, nutritionist, etc, to take care of this murderer for life. Not to mention subverting the inalienable rights of the taxpayers to do so.

    As long as it is not you or your loved ones are not forced to take care of this murderer, you can maintain your liberal idea that the murderer is not a threat and that he is entitled to be taken care of for life by the taxpayers while subvert their inalienable rights in order to do so.

    Let those that have to take care of this murderer, or fear of his escape, eat cake, right Troy?

    1. BF

      I would be very, very surprised to hear that conservatives believe that people who are unwilling to take responsibility for their actions automatically surrender their human rights, Mr. Nelson.

      Very, very surprised indeed.

      What say you SDDWC?

      1. BF

        Stace, your ethic here renders the entire 5th Amendment moot:

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

        1. Stace Nelson

          Except one small problem Mr Bill, Roberts received a fair trial and received an appropriate punishment under the laws of this great country.

          Divert the actual issues if you can’t win.

          Next, more insults and personal attacks.

          Let’s skip your normal tantrum, I have a party to get to.

        2. duggersd

          Are you saying Roberts was denied due process? Or are you saying he was not indicted? Or are you saying he was compelled to testify against himself? Just what part of the 5th amendment are you trying to say applies here?

      2. Stace Nelson

        Moses! If there was ever living proof that one should not ingest the drugs of the ’70’s, you clearly are a case study for such.

        The law of the land says the rightful punishment of Mr Roberts is death, not a rewarding full life time of relaxation, three meals a day, comfort, medical care, dental care, & Oprah.. It was no secret that such is the penalty for such wanton planned crimes.

        Roberts signed his own death warrant when he committed his crimes, no one else.

        So are you still advocating that WE the people deprive the murders of their inalienable rights by their incarceration?

        How do you justify advocating a life time of relaxation for a murdering villian like Roberts by subverting the inalienable rights of taxpayers; however, you deprive an innocent child in the womb of mere months and depand their termination to uphold what you consider as a woman’s right?

            1. BF

              Clearly you are having trouble following your own convoluted reasoning, Stace. I don’t think I can help you with that.

              But here’s a shot.

              A person can’t do “due process” on himself.

              If he is executed, it is because “We the people” executed him.

              Get it?

              No?

              Okay, maybe you just better go to your party.

  11. Troy Jones

    Mr Nelson,

    I very carefully used the word “necessary” and outlines why it isnt necessary to protect society. i have also explained while it might be legal I do not think it just.

    Disagree with me fine but quit misrepresenting my words.

    I encourage everyone to read my comments here and at Madville. Your inference proves just the kind of human being you are.

  12. Stace Nelson

    Mr Jones,
    You would insert your ill informed laymen views over that of an educated well trained judge empowered by the people of South Dakota to protect the innocents of our state. Even though you claim that you respect such decisions to protect society. Your arrogance knows no bounds.

    What part of this confessed convicted criminal’s professed statements that he will kill again did you not undertstand?

    I have had my fill of your asinine statements on Madville, where you so apply fit in; however, if I have mistated your liberal agenda of a life time entitlement for this vicious murderer vice the appropriate death sentence the duly appointeed judge prescibed, please wow us with your usual arrogant tales of hand shaking and name dropping and then the sad liberal tales you would pass as conservative ideas.

    This, with your angry opposition to posting recorded votes for the public to view, gives an accurate picture of just who you are.

    Clearly your professed hand shaking with notable Conservatives has not endowed you with ACTUAL conservative principles that your stuffed shirt ego name dropping exploits would confer..

  13. BF

    All your protestations, obfuscations, insults, and twisted logic aside, Mr. Nelson, your position that a person surrenders his rights when he commits a crime is incommensurate with the American Judicial System.

    You should perhaps rethink it.

  14. BF

    Summation of Mr. Nelson’s position:

    1. He does not believe human rights are inalienable (unalienable).

    2. He does not believe prisons can be made safe enough to protect prison guards, other prisoners or society in general.

    3. He believes prisoners sentenced to death have sentenced themselves and holds “We the People” via the Judicial system harmless.

    4. He believes that anyone who disagrees with him on these points is not a good, red-blooded American like he is.

    5. He believes the way to win a reasoned argument is by emotional intimidation.

    There are more. But lets begin by having him rebut those. One by one. In clear, rational, reasonable language. And as an ordinary citizen, without reference to his experience as a law enforcement officer in the military.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Bill
      Have you ever noticed that when you go down in massive flames on an issue, you take to typing up asinine comments and flouting them about as someone else’s?

      How about sticking with your liberal argument and let other people speak for themselves? or should we do the same idiotic thing to you?

      But what the heck, you got another chance to change the subject and run from your liberal argument that lays dead on the blog floor.

      Insumation your argument is”

      Kill the unborn but keep murderous threats to society and make society deprive lawful citizens of their inalienable rights in order to do so all the while draining much needed tax monies & depriving law abiding citizens further of their inalienable rights?

      Such enlightement! I cannot believe our Founding Fathers did not prescibe it as law of the land INSTEAD of providing for just punishment, to include capitol punishment, for those that would deprive others of their inalienable rights!

      They must not have believed in their own comments about inalienable rights, huh?

  15. Troy Jones

    Duh and SDWC Readers,

    Opposition to the death penalty (many with a different rationale more reliant on a government that can kill is too powerful) includes conservatives George Will, Pat Robertson, Bob Barr, Richard Viguerie, Larry Klayman( founder of Judicial Watch), Oliver North, Ed Crane (founder of Cato Institute), Brent Bozell (Media Research Center).

    My view is expanded to include the issue of the sanctity of human life utilizing the American principle that certain rights are inalienable of which the right to life is preeminent. If my position results in me being unacceptable in conservative circles, so be it.

    There was a time when I thought the killing of the wrongly convicted as just the consequence of our fallen world and justified by the bigger picture. Then I thought it could only be applied where absolute certainty could be established (ala Eric Robert). But probably 10 years ago I had a long conversation with a strong supporter of the death penalty where we got into why it is necessary.

    This person cited these reasons:

    1) Deterrent- We could deter more theft too if we cut off hands for stealing. We agreed this was the weakest argument as it may deter those who wouldn’t kill but seems to have little effect on those who do as Eric Robert demonstrates.

    2) Money- It was cheaper to execute than incarcerate. But unless we were willing to tolerate wrongly convicted being executed, this probably wasn’t true.

    3) Retribution and justice for the family of the victim- At first this definitely was thought to be the strongest argument at least by me. It still retains the most visceral appeal to me, especially intellectually. But, it also causes me the most consternation in my heart. When I began to apply my views on the sanctity of life, I began to understand why this was so disconcerting me.

    When is it permissible for ME to take another’s life? Only when I or another is in imminent danger and it is the only option in the circumstances. I then asked if I could or should delegate a power to my government I know is not possessed by me.

    In the end, I decided the decision to kill another is so grave, irreversible, when there is an alternative to imprison in max security, that in total I needed to err on the side of life, even if it meant a person like Eric Robert would continue to live.

    But after awhile, I came to realize it is not just Eric Roberts life I was defending. I was defending everyone’s right to life from conception to natural death. This is when my Inalienable rights argument began to shape in my mind. Maybe my view is flawed but until I hear arguments that speak both to my mind and conscience, I have no choice but to believe as I do.

    And calling me a liberal is not enough for me to forsake this belief. Belief means understanding what one thinks to be true and then standing for it, even if I have to be called a liberal or worse.

    Nor does the vehemence I argue my points personal. There are people I love who disagree with me in whole or in part. Mr. Nelson thinks my arguments are directed at him. I invite you to read my words here and at Madville and ask you if I am attacking him or defending my views. More important, I have asked him many questions for which I can gain insight into the rationale for the death penalty to which the response was essentially”liberal!.” Maybe you can better defend the death penalty than my friend did so many years ago. I have changed my views on many issues when presented with information I had not before considered.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr Jones,
      I believe in the rule of law & that the sentence imposed on Roberts was appropriate & just.

      Your argument is that we must give him an entitlement to a comfortable life of ease, medical care, healthcare, & Oprah for the rest of his natural life by store housing him in prison OR WE are violating his inalienable rights to life.

      I say that Roberts is PERSONALLY RESPONSIBLE for his own actions & the rightful sentence he received NOT the public that you would transfer that guilt to.

      You claim you support society’r right to defend itself from such threats: http://dakotawarcollege.com/archives/23096/comment-page-1#comment-127117 However, you then have the arrogance to declare the judge in this case wrong & interject your own laymen idea that Roberts is not a threat and that our prison personal must take care of this murder who just murdered Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson & who has sworn to kill again!

      In you & BF’s argument, WE are violating Robert’s inalienable rights if he receives his just punishment of death as adjudgedy. You do not explain how this is not violating the public’s (to include prison personnel) inalienable rights. Under your same argument, locking criminals up also violates their inalienable right to liberty.

      Lastly, for heavens sakes, stop the name dropping. Especially without thought. Ollie North? Really? Was not Ollie a Marine? Is not engaging the enemy with deadly force the death sentence for the enemy?

      The numerous lengthy posts here and at Madville and you sadly claim all I said was “liberal?”

      Well, acting the victim and diverting the attention from the real issue, when the argument is lost, is another liberal calling card.

        1. duggersd

          So some people can disagree. I would be willing to bet this is the first time you agreed with Oliver North. Perhaps you would like to use his opinions on things such as illegal immigration to bolster your “argument”.

  16. CaveMan

    I would like to thank both Nelson and Jones for a very spirited debate. In most peoples lives the decision to kill another human being never is forced upon them. Sadly both judges and mothers with extreme medical conditions during pregnancy do. What does seem to offend most people is the use of abortion for birth control and also the level of comfort we have allowed in our penal system. Abortion should be the last option to save a mothers life and going to jail should be synonymous with going to Hell. And finally in my mind those who are 100% against any and all abortions cannot be for the death penalty under any circumstances. We can and should debate these things but as long as human beings have free choices to make in their own lives horrible things will continue happening.

    God has blessed America beyond belief. Let us make sure we return the favor.

    (if she would have just left that darn apple alone…..) 馃檪

  17. Anonymous

    I am growing more and more convinced that Marty Jackley will be the next Governor of South Dakota.

    1. anon

      Yes. He would get my support over Dusty.

      Michels is his real challenge and I don’t think we will elect a 3rd Governor from the same tree in a row.

  18. insomniac

    Jackley has really had some high profile cases since becoming AG. AG is obviously the best constitutional gig in SD.

  19. duh

    Troy: as it relates to the death penalty and especially as it relates to roberts, you cannot be more wrong. There’s a point that comes where you need to put the Bible down, especially the New Testament and pull the trigger.

    1. BF

      Of course there is a point like that, Duh. It’s called self defense. Capital punishment is not self defense.

      1. Stace Nelson

        Why? Because you edict it so? Capital punishment is defense of society, and just punishment for the worst crimes.

        Please tell me the name of one person Ted Bundy hurt after he was put to death? Consider the question relevent for every murderer that was put to death. I will save you the time to research the issue, not ONE person was ever hurt.

        Additionally, the families of the victims did not have to live in fear that monsters such as he would ever get loose again.

        The crimes that these criminals commit to warrant the death sentence do not occur in a vacuum. There are countless families that live in agony over the vicious murders of their family member. Many often live in fear as long as the Eric Roberts of the world draw a breath.

        1. BF

          See Troy Jones’s post above. He addresses every one of these points. No sense rehashing here what Troy has already provided so eloquently. Read it four times, Nelson. Maybe it will start to sink in.

          1. Stace Nelson

            But not one crocadile tear for the unborn you advocate killing in the name of civil rights?

            So! Kill the unborn but keep murderous threats to society and make society deprive lawful citizens of their inalienable rights in order to do so all the while draining much needed tax monies & depriving law abiding citizens further of their inalienable rights?

            Can’t beleeve we less enlightened don’t grasp the brilliant logic of that.

              1. Stace Nelson

                Bwaahahahaha!

                You have stated repeatedly that you are for the killing of unborn children at the discretion and want of the mother.

                Is it not government intrusion to force citizens to take care of and pay for these threats to society? How much more intrusive can a government be?

                Your argument in the base form is as such: Kill the unborn but keep murderous threats to society and make society deprive lawful citizens of their inalienable rights in order to do so all the while draining much needed tax monies & depriving law abiding citizens further of their inalienable rights?

                1. BF

                  I have stated no such thing. I have stated that it is the business of the mother and not the government.

                  1. BF

                    The rest of my arguments have been to dispell the ridiculous notions some of you have about what life is, when it began, what constitutes a person, etc. Mainly in an effort to correct your less than elementary grade level understanding of science and biology.

                  2. BF

                    In addition, I refuse to abdicate the term “pro-life” to a political party, most of whom have no real idea or interest in what life really is. I will use the English language as I please, and submit that I am more “pro-life” than most who claim they are.

                    1. BF

                      And finally, if you agree that there should be exceptions for people who have abortion, exceptions of any sort, you are precisely as “pro-choice” as I am.

  20. duh

    BF 5:37 a.m. your comment is the exact opposite of reality. If you commit a crime the direct consequence is that you do lose your rights. This is incredibly stupid. I would assume that you foods folks also object to Sadam and quadafi being put down. UGH !

    1. BF

      No, you do NOT lose your rights when you commit a crime, Duh. Not under the Constitution of the United States of America. Your comment is the only incredibly stupid thing in this exchange. You should rethink it.

      1. duggersd

        Actually Bill was happy as hell Ghadaffi was put down. And, I think probably, Bin Laden. But that would probably be because it was done on Obama’s watch. I would not be surprised if we could find him lamenting what happened to Saddam.
        The US Constitution has a provision for the taking of criminal life if that person has had due process. Robert is getting due process, therefore it is Constitutional.
        One has a right to be free of incarceration until one commits a crime and is arrested. If upon indictment and conviction that person has to surrender that right. And if it is a capital case, then that person may surrender life. All spelled out in the Constitution.

  21. duh

    BF youre pro life? From your voluminous posts it is clear that your either lying or just like to start endless hair splitting and stupid arguments.

      1. Stace Nelson

        what about undue governement interference in requiring innocent tax payers to take care of and pay for violent murders like Eric Roberts for life? That is okay though right?

        1. BF

          I think there are too many people in prisons if that’s what you’re asking, Stace. Way too many. The ONLY ones who should be there in my opinion are those whom society needs protection from.

  22. BF

    Ever hear of “Miranda” Duh?

    From wikipedia:
    “Every U.S. jurisdiction has its own regulations regarding what, precisely, must be said to a person arrested or placed in a custodial situation. The typical warning states:

    You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say or do can and will be held against you in a court of law. You have the right to speak to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you. Do you understand these rights as they have been read to you?[3]

    The courts have since ruled that the warning must be “meaningful”, so it is usually required that the suspect be asked if he understands his rights. Sometimes, firm answers of “yes” are required. Some departments and jurisdictions require that an officer ask “do you understand?” after every sentence in the warning. An arrestee’s silence is not a waiver, but on June 1, 2010, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that police are allowed to interrogate suspects who have not unambiguously invoked or waived their rights, and any statement given during questioning prior to invocation or waiving is admissible as evidence.[4] Evidence has in some cases been ruled inadmissible because of an arrestee’s poor knowledge of English and the failure of arresting officers to provide the warning in the arrestee’s language.[citation needed]

    Also because of various education levels, officers must make sure the suspect understands what the officer is saying. It may be necessary to “translate” to the suspect’s level of understanding. Courts have ruled this admissible as long as the original waiver is said and the “translation” is recorded either on paper or on tape.

    Some jurisdictions provide the right of a juvenile to remain silent if their parent or guardian is not present.

    Even though this sentence may be somewhat ambiguous to some laypersons, the U.S. Supreme Court has approved of it as an accurate description of the procedure in those states. Duckworth v. Eagan, 492 U.S. 195 (1989) (upholding use of sentence by Hammond, Indiana police).

    In states bordering Mexico, including Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, suspects who are not United States citizens are given an additional warning:[citation needed]

    If you are not a United States citizen, you may contact your country’s consulate prior to any questioning.”

  23. Troy Jones

    1) Is Ollie Northa liberal or am I just an Ollie North conservative.

    2) Since I want a strict interpretation of the Declaration and the concept of inalienable rights, are those who like Mr. Nelson judicial activists who want to distort our founding documents to serve their own agenda?

    3) Since Mr Nelson thinks incarcerating people is advocating putting people on welfare, is he advocating we quit punishing convict with jail, kill or release them? IHe did say being a prison guard is a violation of their inalienable rights. Who is going to guard all these criminals?

    4) Does anyone wonder why there is this growing list of conservatives deciding to oppose the death penalty?

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr Jones,
      Again with the name dropping. Try sticking with who you are and not glombing on to others to claim you are like them for juuuuussstt one post.

      The major problem with your arguement is that our US Constitution, authored by the same Founding Fathers who cite inalienable rights in the Declaration of Independence, PROVIDE for WAR & capitol punishment & imprisonment of duly convicted criminals which violates inalienable rights of criminals & enemies of this country, according to you!

      Tsk, tsk, the old liberal if you can’t beat them mistate them trick.

      Clearly that is is not what I said Mr. Jones. But I understand your desperate desire to distract from your previous comments above.

      You claim that “.. society has the legitimate right to do whatever is necessary to protect society proportional to the threat?” but then you disrespect a judge that was empowered by the citizens of this great state who reviewed this case in detail over the course of days and many hours and determined after careful consideration of all the facts & law that Robert?s crime and demeanor was such that the death penalty was appropriate on behalf of this state. You make an arrogant claim, in your laymen rejection of the appropriate death sentence the judge imposed, that “Eric Robert will never kill again.” ..even as Roberts explictly warns that he will!

      There are also people who claim to be Conservatives that advocate abortion. My wife also claims that I am good looking, does not make it so.

  24. duh

    BF again splitting hairs. I assume your cognitive reasoning is effected on the phrase committed a crime. Im talking conviction of a crime and you sure as hell lose your rights in that sense including the right to remain silent, face your accusers, etc. you commit the crime and are convicted, you are punished. What don’t you get about that?

  25. Troy Jones

    Mr. Nelson,

    LOL. Kinda bothers you your man Ollie is a liberal doesn’t it?

    I am typing slow so you can read it. I used CAPS flr words you might have to look up in the dictionary.

    1) I have never said capital punishment is INHERENTLY unconstitutional.

    2) I have said it is permitted to deprive a person of an INALIENBLE right if NECESSARY to DEFEND another’s INALIENBLE right.

    3) I know I capitalized INALIENABLE but I want to be clear the word means “UNABLE to be TAKEN away, SURRENDERED or TRANSFERRED.”

    4)We as Conservatives insist judges should strictly interpret the Constitution. A strict interpretation of INALIENABLE would only permit it in defense.

    5) Because of limits of incarceration for most of history, the death penalty was necessary to protect. For instance, in the old West hanging right after trial was permitted because of the risk of escape or breakout put everyone at risk. As this became less and less a risk greater protections were instituted.

    5) We have the virtual absolute capability to prevent escape or any threat to anyone else by utilizing a max security setting for people who previously were executed. This new capability gives the US an alternative to protect society not previously available.

    6) Because we are talking about an inalienable right, if we have a viable alternative, we should change the law.

    7) You keep saying my view impugns Judge Zell, who I respect. The death penalty is permitted by the Supreme Court. His decision was consistent with what is permitted. Doesnt mean it should be permitted just as I dont think abortion should be permitted.

    This is my view and I urge it becomes the law of the land. Disagree if you want. Call me a liberal if you want. My brand of conservatism focuses on the individual such that if there is an alternative to giving a power to the government I will try to take it. I truly think you have an insecurity that prevents you from even contemplating ideas that on the surface threatens your statist view of conservatism causing you to strike out at such threats vs. engaging in dialogue.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,
      Please be careful as you back peddle so quickly.

      Couldn’t even get through one post without one name dropped, huh? 馃榾

      Read your #2 & #3 sentences again. In #2 you say the same thing I have been saying over and over again, but then in #3 you say you can’t do it! Hello? Hello? Insert your asinine comments here to yourself of if you understand inalienable.

      In #4, I thought you said ?UNABLE to be TAKEN away, SURRENDERED or TRANSFERRED.? Where is self-defense in that definition?

      Seems you are so confused you cannot stick with a thought?

      Your first #5, there are many reasons for capitol punishment, one of them is to ensure protection of society from a violent criminal. The other is rightful punishment of a criminal and JUSTICE!

      Your second #5, you arrogantly proclaim this over this case?! Did you happen to read the details of the crime? Are you not aware that Ron Johnson was Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson and he was murdered on the job! Are you kidding me? Do you believe in your arrogance that simply because you edict something it makes it so?! What about the people that have to take care of monsters like Eric Robert. You are aware that it does not happen by magic?

      #6 Now we can take away inalienable rights? Insert your repeated asinine comments to me here.

      #7 Actually, Troy, we enforce laws enacted by the people of this state, not judges. Reread your statement in #4 and remember Judge Zell’s understanding was not clouded by your arrogant view that you are enlightened. He heard Eric Robert clearly threaten to kill again! Plus, the judge understands JUSTICE & DESERVED PUNISHMENT!

      Your own comments here, and in your previous opposition to my idea of posting all record votes in postings here, indict you, not me.

      How is requiring the innocent prison guards to risk their lives to take care of these monsters in prison, and the taxpayer to pay for them in comfort for life, all the while preserving these threats, not government control of the masses? Is that not statist? Am I not the one advocating the will of the people & JUSTICE?

      Ahhh, who is it that always pull the victim card? What is next Mr. Jones, the race card? You forget, it was you that first attacked me for daring to field the novel idea of making all recorded legislative votes visible to the public.

      I am sorry your enlightened sensitivities can not handle heated dialogue, or the failure of your idea that we should allow violent murderers to hold society hostage for the rest of their lives.

      In that you despise me for wanting to protect the law abiding innocent people of this state, uphold THEIR laws, and ensure justice is served for the family and society, I happily wear your enlightened scorn with honor.

  26. BF

    OMG you are so profoundly stupid, Nelson.

    Troy is saying that the death penalty violates natural law. The rights are inalienable, which means the individual retains them whether the government and its laws recognize them or not.

    This is the basis for all human rights causes world wide. Our Constitution was written to recognize and protect these unalienable rights to the highest degree possible, and the subsequent amendments have given clarity and specificity to that intent.

    Troys position (and mine) is that unless it is absolutely necessary to violate one’s natural, inalienable human rights in order to protect society, it should not be done, because it is not the American way.

    Good conservatives understand that the Constitution limits liberty, it does not grant rights, but rather takes them away.

    In a fully enlightened society, we would not need law and government.

    Your writings make it painfully obvious to anyone who can suffer through the reading of them that we are decidedly not yet there.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. BIll Fleming I presume? I can understand the desire to obscure that.

      Noted hard left liberal that you are, even you can understand that Eric Robert viciously murdered Mr. Johnson an on duty Senior Corrections Officer, and he stated that HE WILL KILL AGAIN!

      Is it stupid to protect innocent society from that proven threat or to warehouse it for life, make others risk their life to take care of it, and for society to expend those much needed tax resources to nurture it?

      Is it stupid that society receive justice for the crime and the criminal receive an appropriate punishment for their crime?

      I would protect innocent society’s rights, you & Mr. Jones would deny society justice, protect such murderers from an appropriate punishment, and create a NEW LIFE TIME ENTITLEMENT for the Roberts of the world to be taken care of for life. All while demanding someone else risk their life to take care of them and while demanding innocent society to pay for it all the while being held hostage by the proven threats to society that you force them to pay for!

      You are mistaken, good Conservatives believe the primary duty of government is to defend us against enemies, foreign and domestic, who would take our Liberty. We must maintain a strong and effective military in defense of external enemies and we must provide a strong and effective legal system to defend us against enemies at home.
      Good Conservatives understand the US Constitution provisions that allow the government to do so while it LIMITS the government itself from impeding the liberties of the people.

      LIBERALS believe the Constitution limits the liberty of the individual, for the benefit of government, as you implied in your misstatement.
      What also guts Mr. Jones’ and your liberal idea of preserving these threats to society for life, are you would happily deprive society of justice for these terrible crimes, and protect these wanton criminals of the punishment they deserve just so you can preserve the image of yourself as enlightened.

      But let the folks that have to deal with and fear these murders eat cake, right Bill & Troy?

      Defense & protection of society, justice, & punishment..

      1. Bill Fleming

        …and yet, even as you try to vilify the word, Nelson, our form of government is called a “Liberal Democracy.” Profane the word at your own peril.

        This is the Preamble of our Liberal Democracy. I don’t see anything there about taking away anyone’s natural rights. Only the intention to form a “more perfect union.”

        “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence,[note 1] promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

        1. Stace Nelson

          BF, you appear to have a low view of yourself as the reference to you as a Liberal is the only reference to liberal that could have been taken as vilifying.

          May I suggest you read the whole Constitution and then concentrate on the amendments? I would cite the specifics herein; however, doing so may further aggravate your perception of being persecuted.

          1. Bill Fleming

            Oh, I’m not whining, Stace. Just noting that you like to set up meaningless strawman arguments when you have nothing of real substance to offer. And further, that those self-same strawmen oftentimes catch fire and burn you in the behind.

              1. Bill Fleming

                That’s good. Because I wasn’t. Nor do I have a low opinion of myself, or liberals. Personally, I am liberal on some things, moderate on others and conservative on others. In general it has to do with proximity. The closer the issue is to home, the more liberal I am. Here at home, there are those whom I love unconditionally. Were I a saint could extend the geography exponentially. Like Jesus tells me to do. I’m not there yet.

  27. Troy Jones

    Again, very slowly.

    1) A government or individual may always take proportionate measures to protect themselves or others from an imminent and real threat to a right. You refuse to acknowledge or provide any evidence that Eric Robert can not be removed as a threat in maximum security setting and remains a real threat to society or guards.

    2) The heinous act of Eric Robert against Ron Johnson occurred in the general prison population and not maximum security. Killing Eric Robert will not prevent another person in the general prison population from doing the same thing today. The general prison population is where the greatest risk to guards is. Always has been and always will be.

    3) With regard to my #6, I do not understand what you are trying to say.

    4) Ahh, finally justice and punishment. Two very, very worthy principles and goals plus their combination just punishment. This is the first time you have raised this in all your ramblings and I concede it is the strongest argument for the death penalty. I alluded to it earlier when I mentioned retribution.

    As I’m getting tired of talking slowly, I’m not going to now talk in detail but by some rhetorical questions. I’m not looking for answers as they are rhetorical. Only something to be considered.

    Punishment: What crimes do we punish with an “eye for an eye” in our society? If you run over me and I lose my ability to walk, would we take away your ability to walk? If you rape my daughter, would I get to rape your daughter? In short, punishment is tempered by something higher than just simple retribution because we as society know we don’t want to become the same as the criminal. I contend this temper is the inherent human dignity all people have, the unborn, infirm, elderly and even those who commit the most heinous of acts.

    Justice: Justice is derived from the word “just” which is to give another his due. Often the focus is to give according to acts and usually this is appropriate. But, probably especially as believers, we should never reduce a person to the sum total of their acts. They are greater than their acts (even their good acts) or their utility (even those most useful doing good) to society. As we defend the infirm, unborn etc. as something more than their acts, abilities, or utility, should we not recognize that the most heinous too are something more than the sum total of their acts (or just one very heinous act)?

    I’m going to use a story from the Bible. I don’t use it because I’m looking for a debate on what the Bible says. I just can’t think of a better story and it touches on what is legal isn’t necessarily just.

    We all know the story of the prostitute about to be stoned and Christ says “Let the one without sin cast the first stone” and the people walk away. Two of the morals of the story are:

    1) We as individuals and our government are imperfect making us incapable of ever executing perfect justice. For those of us who believe, we acknowlege only God is perfect. The rest acknowledge everything is imperfect. But the universal truth (whether believer or not) is perfect justice is beyond us and thus we should be careful, humble and thoughtful in pursuit of justice. I think this is what Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. was referring to when he said “This is a court of law, not a court of justice.”

    2) Stoning of a prostitute is not just punishment. But what is just punishment? Making her wear a chastity belt? Making her give it away for free? What we do is lock prostitutes up and/or make them pay a fine. But does this do justice to the families they disrupt? Does this do justice to the degradation she does to herself? Does it properly consider maybe she was taught by her father her only value was to be used by men? No, it only serves two purposes: To punish her for her actions, hopefully prevent her from doing it again, and for a time remove her from society.

    My point:

    While we should always pursue justice, Justice with a capital “J” is beyond us. All we can really do is punish and we should have no illusions we can really do it with Justice. Thus, we should approach punishment with a modicum of humility and not delude ourselves we are executing Justice.

    One of the great contributions of conservatives to society is we are always asking the same questions (at the risk of being accused of name dropping, I’m going to use a quote by a noted conservative in answer):

    1) Should the government be doing this? “”I’m opposed to the death penalty not because I think it’s unconstitutional? but it really is a moral view, and that is that the taking of life is not the way to handle even the most significant of crimes… I think we have to be careful in executing final judgment.” (Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice-dedicated to the concept that freedom and liberty are universal, God-given and inalienable rights that must be protected.)

    2) Is there a better solution? “We are among a growing number of conservatives who have questions and reservations about the death penalty, believe it is no longer a NECESSARY (my emphasis added) form of punishment based on either Lockean or biblical principles, or oppose it outright.” (Richard Vigerie and Brent Bozel) Sidenote: Notice they use the word “necessary” which I think is ultimately the word that changes everything. In the past it was necessary, now it is not.

    3) Can the government even do it fairly? ?I think Capital punishment?s day is done in this county. I don?t think it?s fairly applied.? (Oliver North)

    Just this morning, I came across this article by Vigurie and Brent Bozell (most highly regarded conservatives). I can’t believe how closely my thoughts and theirs coincide. They also use the story of the prostitute. I promise I had written this before I saw the article.

    Over the past few years when I’ve come to hold the position the death penalty is unjust, I thought my view was rare among conservatives, if not virtually unique. However, I take great comfort my view has been held by great conservative minds like Viguerie, Bozell and Sekulow and they have even developed the rationale with greater intellectual vigor and coherence than I could ever expect to do.

    http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/new-voices-growing-conservative-sentiment-concludes-death-penalty-not-needed

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,

      I was going to patiently go through and point out how you even contradict your own statements: however, I will let the ?Godfather? of Conservatives address the Capitol Punishment question:

      ?Well, I had an answer to that on my desk for several years while I was governor. It was a list of the names of 12 criminals, 12 murderers, who had all been sentenced to prison, who had all served their terms or been paroled, and released. And at the time the list was on my desk, their total number of victims then was 34, not 12. I think capital punishment in the beginning might have reduced that figure considerably.

      But in the end, the war on crime will only be won when an attitude of mind and a change of heart takes place in America, when certain truths take hold again and plant their roots deep in our national consciousness, truths like: Right and wrong matters; Individuals are responsible for their actions; Retribution should be swift and sure for those who prey on the innocent.”

      We must understand that basic moral principles lie at the heart of our criminal justice system, that our system of law acts as the collective moral voice of society. There?s nothing wrong with these values, nor should we be hesitant or feel guilty about [punishing] those who violate the elementary rules of civilized existence. Theft is not a form of political or cultural expression; it is theft, and it is wrong. Murder is not forbidden as a matter of subjective opinion; it is objectively evil, and we must prohibit it. And no one but the thief and murderer benefits when we think and act otherwise. ” President Ronald W. Reagan, 40th President of the United States of America (1981)

      Of note, one murderer was executed while he was governor, and he signed federal legislation which allows for the death penalty in murders committed while drud trafficing.

      There is more; however, seems to be getting held up in moderation.

      You stick with your ?conservative? buddies Bill Fleming & Larry Kurtz on this issue, and I will stick with a real Conservative?

    2. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,

      I was going to patiently go through and point out how you even contradict your own statements: however, I will let the ?Godfather? of Conservatives, President Ronald W. Reagan, 40th President of the United States of America address the Capitol Punishment question:

      http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2006/6/28/170302.shtml

      Of note, one murderer was executed while he was governor, and he signed federal legislation which allows for the death penalty in murders committed while drud trafficing.

      You stick with your ?conservative? buddies Bill Fleming & Larry Kurtz on this issue, and I will stick with a real Conservative?

      1. Stace Nelson

        Of note, one murderer was executed while he was governor, and he signed federal legislation which allows for the death penalty in murders committed while drug trafficking.

        You stick with your ?conservative? buddies Bill Fleming & Larry Kurtz on this issue, and I will stick with a real Conservative?

        Good news is, I hear Larry is scribbling you up a VIP IP Conservatives ID on hemp like the one he and BF has. 馃榾

  28. Stace Nelson

    Mr. Jones,

    I was going to patiently go through and point out statements you have made that argue against what you say now: however, I will let my “Godfather” address the Capitol Punishment question:

    “Well, I had an answer to that on my desk for several years while I was governor. It was a list of the names of 12 criminals, 12 murderers, who had all been sentenced to prison, who had all served their terms or been paroled, and released. And at the time the list was on my desk, their total number of victims then was 34, not 12. I think capital punishment in the beginning might have reduced that figure considerably.

    But in the end, the war on crime will only be won when an attitude of mind and a change of heart takes place in America, when certain truths take hold again and plant their roots deep in our national consciousness, truths like: Right and wrong matters; Individuals are responsible for their actions; Retribution should be swift and sure for those who prey on the innocent.

    We must understand that basic moral principles lie at the heart of our criminal justice system, that our system of law acts as the collective moral voice of society. There’s nothing wrong with these values, nor should we be hesitant or feel guilty about [punishing] those who violate the elementary rules of civilized existence. Theft is not a form of political or cultural expression; it is theft, and it is wrong. Murder is not forbidden as a matter of subjective opinion; it is objectively evil, and we must prohibit it. And no one but the thief and murderer benefits when we think and act otherwise.

    A tendency to downplay the permanent moral values has helped make crime the enormous problem that it is today ? [And] it has occurred to me that the root causes of our other major domestic problem, the growth of government and the decay of the economy, can be traced to many of the same sources of the crime problem. This is because the same utopian presumptions about human nature that hinder the swift administration of justice have also helped fuel the expansion of government.

    Many of the social thinkers of the 1950s and ’60s who discussed crime only in the context of disadvantaged childhoods and poverty-stricken neighborhoods were the same people who thought that massive government spending could wipe away our social ills. The underlying premise in both cases was a belief that there was nothing permanent or absolute about any man’s nature, that he was a product of his material environment, and that by changing that environment ? with government as the chief vehicle of change through educational, health, housing, and other programs ? we could permanently change man and usher in a great new era.

    Well, we’ve learned the price of too much government: runaway inflation, soaring unemployment, impossible interest rates. We’ve learned that Federal subsidies and government bureaucrats not only fail to solve social problems but frequently make them worse. ” President Ronald Wilson Reagan, 40th President of the United States of America (1981)

    You stick with your “conservative” buddies Bill Fleming & Larry Kurtz on this issue, and I will stick with a real Conservative…

  29. Stace Nelson

    I will let the ?Godfather? of Conservatives, President Ronald W. Reagan, 40th President of the United States of America address the Capitol Punishment question as my last feelings on the matter:

    http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2006/6/28/170302.shtml

    Of note, one murderer was executed while he was governor, and he signed federal legislation which allows for the death penalty in murders committed while drud trafficing.

    You stick with your ?conservative? buddies Bill Fleming & Larry Kurtz on this issue, and I will stick with a real Conservative?

  30. Bill Fleming

    “Good Conservatives understand the US Constitution provisions that allow the government to do so while it LIMITS the government itself from impeding the liberties of the people.”

    Yes. that is exactly what Troy and I have been saying. You are the one arguing that the people’s rights should be impeded, Stace.

    In fact, you are arguing that by imposition of the death penalty, Government has the power to eliminate them outright.

    What it can do to one, it can do to all.

    As Troy argues, (and I agree with him) that is too much power.

    Now, as Troy states (only to the converse) if that makes us true conservatives, so be it.

    I say let’s just agree that it’s an American value that we all share in common. That’s the way the Founders did it.

      1. Bill Fleming

        Reagan executed one prisoner in his entire 8 year tenure as governor.

        One.

        Your construct would execute them by the hundreds, Texas style.

        By my read, your and Reagan’s philosophies seem to have little, if anything in common, Nelson.

          1. Bill Fleming

            I read it Stace, then I looked up his record. I’m more inclined to trust one’s actions. You know the old saying “actions speak louder than words” right?

            I believe Reagan was a man of compassion, conscience and optimistic vision.

            Conversely, the jury’s still out on you, brother.

            1. Stace Nelson

              Bill, during that period some fine upstanding liberal justices decided that the death penalty was cruel and unusual punishment. Death sentences were overturned by these activist jurists and there was a moritorium on such cases from ’67-’72, President Reagan was governor from ’67-’75, if my memory serves me correctly.

              PRESIDENT Reagan later signed into law federal statute allowing the death penalty for murder while drug trafficking.

              As usual, don’t let the facts get in the way of the truth of the matter on the issue or about me.

                  1. Bill Fleming

                    Again, as per above, it doesn’t matter some much what he said, as what he actually did. One can easily make the observation that executing people who commit murder would prevent them from committing more. The same could be said of all crimes. Kill a rapist and he doesn’t rape any more. But that doesn’t make the observation good policy. That takes us back to medieval times, the Inquisition and a police state. Not good. That’s why I’m guessing Regan didn’t act on his observation, and why I think he was smart and you’re not.

  31. Troy Jones

    I just read the entire speech to which your post referred. What a great man who is missed.

    Coincidentally, when President Reagan said those words, he and I were in agreement.

    Reagan quotes:

    “I know in my heart that man is good. That what is right will always eventually triumph. And there’s purpose and worth to each and every life. ” (I presume that means Eric Robert too)

    ?Here you discover that so long as books are kept open, then minds can never be closed.? I like to think he might have also experienced the same “conversion” on the issue that the other conservatives I mentioned did over the same time frame. 馃檪

    “A friend of mine was asked to a costume ball a short time ago. He slapped some egg on his face and went as a liberal economist. ” (Just seems appropriate on Halloween)

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,
      President Reagan was a very wise old man when he signed the federal law expanding the death penalty for murders committed while drug trafficking, and he supported the death penalty all his long life as he witnessed the costs to the public of liberal arrogant arguments that murderers could be controled. (See the first part of his speech)

      Requoting his statements out of context, in an apparant desperate attempt to support your liberal ideas, does not change that he not only supported the death penalty, he facilitated it, and your effort to confuse the public’s views of his stance on the issue is the height of disrespect to a good man.

      This was in 1987 http://articles.latimes.com/1987-10-17/news/mn-3706_1_death-penalty

  32. Bill Fleming

    Yes, the measure was defeated because it was deemed unconstitutional, thus proving Troy’s point.

    Even good men like Reagan make mistakes, Stace.

    Seems to me it would behoove those of us who follow him to learn from such past errors, so as to avoid similar mistakes in the present and future due to what was proven to be unsound legal reasoning.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Fleming,
      Your statement is catagorically false.

      The provisions of the Anti Drug Abuse Act of 1988 discussed, that President Reagan signed into law, have NOT been “deemed unconstitutional” as you CLAIM.

      They are in FACT still the law of the land at 2 1 U.S.C. 848(e)http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/21cfr/21usc/848.htm

      Good men do make mistakes, and we acknowkledge them, as I did above in my apology to you; however, President Reagan was not wrong on this issue.

          1. Stace Nelson

            From your lack of apology and clarification, and your frantic effort to take up the posting under the post and divert the subject, can we take that as an admission you intentionally either didn’t know what you were talking about or were being intentionally dishonest?

            1. Bill Fleming

              I was referring to the first bill before it was revised. (1984) And THEN to the second version which was perhaps more constitutional, but hasn’t been tested. Seems it has only been implemented once. Not exactly a workable solution now was it Stace? It all goes to show that as far as history is concerned, he was wrong both times. No apology necessary. I stand by my position.

              1. Stace Nelson

                You can tell a lot about a man when he is proven wrong and his ego will not let him admit his error.

                The provisions of the Anti Drug Abuse Act of 1988 discussed, that President Reagan signed into law, have NOT been ?deemed unconstitutional? as you CLAIM.

                They are in FACT still the law of the land at 2 1 U.S.C. 848(e)http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/21cfr/21usc/848.htm

                1. Bill Fleming

                  Yes I know. It was the ’84 bill that was. The second law has yet to be tested as I have demonstrated and you have not rebutted. Face it, Stace, the law is a bust. If was good it would be being enforced.

                  But since you’re so big on “the law of the land” what’s up with all your unconstitutional yammering about immigration law and abortion?

                  In both cases you are arguing against the law of the land.

                  You can’t have it both ways, big fella.

                  1. Stace Nelson

                    You were proven wrong, you offer no evidence of your new revelation of an ’84 bill.

                    I support the immigration laws of this country, they are not being enforced.

                    Give me time on abortion, it took us Republicans a little while to get rid of slavery too. 馃榾

                    1. Bill Fleming

                      Yup. Sane thing with the death penalty. It will take time. The 1984 bill is history. Look it up. Sorry about the confusion. Even so the 1988 bill is obviously not being implimented as far as the death penalty is concerned.

                    2. Stace Nelson

                      You look it up and post it here. Aside from the fact that we were specifically talking about this specific provisions of the law, the fact you don’t provide a link is further evidence that you were wrong.

                    3. Bill Fleming

                      I provided the link.
                      Prior to my doing it, I was still correct. The absence of a link doesn’t prove that I am wrong, it proves that you are lazy, uninformed and prone to calumny as per Mr. Jone’s observation.

                      Tsk. Shame on you, Mr. Jones.

                      You have been very naughty here these past few days.

                      You should get no Halloween candy tonight.

                    4. Bill Fleming

                      Okay, maybe a little crow on that one. But not much. I was more unclear than wrong.

                      And yes, Habanero sauce helps.

                      But the thing about inalienable rights? I still don’t think you grasp the concept, because I don’t think you understand natural law.

                  2. Bill Fleming

                    Let me know if you detect a trend here, Stace:

                    The United States military has executed 135 people since 1916. The last execution was in 1961.

                    Twenty-six federal (including military) executions have been carried since 1950. Three of those (none of them military) have occurred in the modern post-Gregg era. This list only includes those executed under federal jurisdiction. Since 1963, three people have been executed by the federal government of the United States. All were executed by lethal injection.

                    1 Timothy McVeigh
                    2 Juan Raul Garza
                    3 Louis Jones, Jr.

                    Source:
                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_individuals_executed_by_the_United_States

                  3. Bill Fleming

                    p.s. you did read the link and understand that I am right about the two laws, right? The first unconstitutional, the second apparantly unenforcable? Come on now Stace, take your medicine.

                    1. Stace Nelson

                      Bill, you pasted my link about the bill that became law in 1988. You keep mentioning a law in ’84; however, you provide no link or SCOTUS case law.

                      As indicated above, I admit my errors. 馃槈

                    2. BF

                      Yes, the reference to the 1984 law is in the LA Times link as follows. Was that your link? We’ll then what the WTF did you ask ME to look it up for? :-p

                      “The Administration sought unsuccessfully to put these measures into law in 1984, when Congress passed the Administration’s Comprehensive Crime Control Act, and Atty. Gen. Edwin Meese III has since spoken out frequently in favor of such revisions, although Congress has demonstrated strong opposition to the proposals.”

                    3. BF

                      That link and others later go on to explain that the laws can’t be enforced because they can’t be applied equally in concordance with the 14th Amendment ad hence are most likely moot, as per Oliver North’s observation.

                      Crow? Habanero?

  33. Troy Jones

    The first quote cam from what President Reagan chose to have on his tombstone. I think it significant of all of his views one of three he wanted on his tombstone was “And there?s purpose and worth to each and every life.” The context is it is probably something we should consider with regard to Eric Robert unless of course you are sure he didn’t mean “each and every.”

    The second quote is to say the intellect/mind should be always open to new learning. I presume this would include Reagan’s. The context is only 30 years ago, I agreed with President Reagan on the death penalty and I hoped he might have made the same conversion. I didn’t assert I know if he would have. You don’t know he wouldn’t have either.

    The third quote was only to have some humor on Halloween. Because today is October 31 it is totally in context.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,
      From your continued sputtering, and lack of dutiful clarification, it appears that it was your intention to deceive the public as to what President’s Reagan’s position was.

      That is a calling card from your other “conservative” friends Bill & IP, not President Reagan.

      Speaks volumes about you and your conservative claims.

      Maybe only under the late ugly conditions of his illness would he have “converted” to the liberal ideas you pander, that he so eloquently ripped asunder and rejected in his ’81 speech: http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2006/6/28/170302.shtml

      We know what the good man stood for all his life. We can take him on his word and actions on the issue instead of you attempting to pervert his legacy by high jacking who he was and what he accomplished to suit your ego; however, I am afraid it is too late for that.

      1. Bill Fleming

        Here are some things Ronald Reagan also said that I’m thinking he probably changed his mind about:

        “If an individual wants to discriminate against Negroes or others in selling or renting his house, it is his right to do so”

        “The Founding Fathers knew a government can’t control the economy without controlling people. And they knew when a government sets out to do that, it must use force and coercion to achieve its purpose.”

        Reagan responded to questions about campus (war) protest movements saying, “If it takes a bloodbath, let’s get it over with. No more appeasement.”

      2. Troy Jones

        LOL You are a something. Your first and only response to anything said by someone you don’t like and who disagrees with you is to assume nefarious intentions. There is a concept with regard to truthfulness that says it is sinful to not be be careful to interpret insofar as possible his neighbor’s thoughts, words, and deeds in a favorable way. Even if one gives a “clarification,” you can’t give it up which then compounds the offense against the truth by committing calumny (when confronted with the truth continues to harm the reputation of others by continuing to encourage false judgments concerning them.

        I have with charity not responded to your first post on this thread which I found most offensive because of its how false it was. If you would be inclined to just apologize for it with regard to my relationships with the people who died in the plane crash, I will accept your apology with nothing more to be said. If you post here again without such an apology, I will assume you are unwilling to do so and consider my response to your very first comment.

        1. Stace Nelson

          Mr Jones,
          Its all about you and your grand ideas of how enlightened you are, not about the vicious death of Ron Johnson and how to protect innocent people in society from this murderer who PROMISES TO MURDER AGAIN.

          When you cannot high jack President Reagan’s legacy to suit your own, and are shown for what your efforts were, now you are a victim that deserves an apology.

          You know who deserves an apology?

          Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson for your arrogant dismissal of Judge Zell’s rightful sentence of Eric Robert and your tromping on the grave of every corrections officer, police officer, and innocent American ever hurt or killed by the Eric Robert of the world by claiming they are safe in prison.

          The families of those poor dead souls who you so crassly interjected into a conversation where their deaths had no relevence other than for you to lay claim to having known them and to prop yourself up on who they were.

          Lastly, you owe an apology to President Reagan for your disrespect to who he was.

          I stand by my comments: post:http://dakotawarcollege.com/archives/23096/comment-page-1#comment-127149

        2. Stace Nelson

          Mr Jones,

          In retrospect, I will apologize for being overly hard on using the names of the good folks that passed away. I let your unfortunate comments to me color my vision of you and it was represented in my remarks.

          May those kind souls rest in peace. God bless.

  34. duh

    Stace: after 700 posts back and forth with BF should give you a clear indication that he has an unlimited supply of garbage and useless spin to throw at you. Hopeless. Save your fingers and your brain.

  35. BF

    The only person Mr. Nelson has finally had to come to grips with here is Stace Nelson, Duh. You can call that hopeless, if you like. I don’t.

    1. Stace Nelson

      BF, or is it Bill Fleming?
      Only the liberal enlightened mind believes one is so supreme as to never admit the possabilty of being wrong. I showed Mr Jones repectful charitable consideration of taking him at his professed word.

      I received the responses from you both that I expected.

      My gesture was in keeping with my principles, from our past interactions I never expected for either of you understand or respond in kind. Sadly, I was correct.

  36. oldguy

    Interesting. Tell me Troy and Bill what would you do to Roberts. I am against the death pleanty, sorry Stace, mom,and dad. I would give Roberts life with no parole working on a chain gang, ok hard labor, ever day of his remainding life.

    1. BF

      Maximum security, probably needs intense psychotherapy. The man is most likely insane. I’m sure our penal system knows what to do with him besides kill him. If not, they should see to it that they do.

    2. Stace Nelson

      Old guy, If each of us had to make our son, daughter, grandson guard Mr Eric Robert knowing he has already killed Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson, the threat would be imminently real to each of us.

      We are blessed to live in a country where this threat is distant from the majority of us; however, in regards specifically to the protection of society aspect, we need to apply that to everyone in our society to include prison personnel. God bless

  37. Duh

    Query here: Old Testament: Eye for an Eye. New Testament: Turn the other cheek and lets have a group hug. Which Testament trumps which? I think its a combo, turn cheeks, hug then if the criminal doesn’t get it, out comes the eye.

    You’re welcome.

    BF, and when do you come to grips with BF? From a man who supports immoral everything on a continual basis, that statement was pretty condescending don’t you think? Your pro-abortion (less governmental intrusion is a complete cop out and you know it) and anti-capital punishment. Wow.

    1. BF

      p.s. Duh, by drafting the 1st, 4th, and 5th Amendments, did the Founders support “immoral everything.”

    2. BF

      p.s.s. Most theologians I know maintain that the ethic expounded by Jesus Christ here trump any law given in the Old Testament, and that he was speaking retroactively of all times past, present and future:

      Mt 22:36 ?[Jesus], which is the great commandment in the law?? And he said to him, ?You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the law and the prophets.?

      1. BF

        By contrast, the ethic you suggest, Duh appears to have more in common with Muslim Sharia Law (I’m just sayin’):

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharia#Penalties

        The punishment depends on whether the criminal was convicted of qesas, hudud or tazir.

        In a tazir crime, the penalty would be usually a prison sentence, corporal punishment in some countries, or a execution in a more serious case (such as a case that was not prosecuted as hudud, like rape/drug trafficking). Since hudud crimes are extremely hard to punish, this is the usual route that would be taken. Stoning and amputation would certainly not be carried out in a tazir sentence, and the punishment would not be fixed, but discretionary. Most countries have a civil code that regulates the penalties that should be received in a tazir crime, such as a death sentence in the case of drug trafficking, aggravated rape, or prison time in the case of other offenses.

        In the rarest of rare case (more common in Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan ) when a person is convicted of a hudud crime, the punishment is much harsher.

        In accordance with the Quran and several hadith, theft is punished by imprisonment or amputation of hands.[121] Several requirements are in place for the amputation of hands, they are:
        There must have been criminal intent to take private (not common) property.

        The theft must not have been the product of hunger, necessity, or duress.

        The goods stolen must: be over a minimum value, not haraam, and not owned by the thief’s family.

        Goods must have been taken from custody (i.e., not in a public place).

        There must be reliable witnesses.

        All of these must be met under the scrutiny of judicial authority.[Quran 5:38][122]

        In accordance with hadith, stoning to death is the penalty for married men and women who commit adultery. In addition, there are several conditions related to the person who commits it that must be met. One of the difficult ones is that the punishment cannot be enforced unless there is a confession of the person, or four male eyewitnesses who each saw the act being committed. All of these must be met under the scrutiny of judicial authority[123] For unmarried men and women, the punishment prescribed in the Quran and hadith is 100 lashes.[124]

        The “four witness” standard comes from the Quran itself, a revelation Muhammad announced in response to accusations of adultery leveled at his wife, Aisha: “Why did they not produce four witnesses? Since they produce not witnesses, they verily are liars in the sight of Allah.”[Quran 24:13]

        Punishments are authorized by other passages in the Quran and hadiths for certain crimes (e.g., extramarital sex, adultery), and are employed by some as rationale for extra-legal punitive action while others disagree:

        ?The woman and the man guilty of adultery or fornication?flog each of them with hundred stripes: Let no compassion move you in their case, in a matter prescribed by God, if ye believe in God and the last day.?[Quran 24:2] ?Nor come nigh to adultery: for it is a shameful (deed) and an evil, opening the road (to other evils).?[Quran 17:32]

  38. Duh

    Boy, four blatherings for the price of one comment. What a deal.

    Put this above your pro-abortion mantra of “No Government Intrusion”…

    Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart…”

  39. BF

    What does that mean, Duh?

    And how does it relate to the abortion issue exactly?

    I take it to mean we are spiritual beings coming to consciousness whether we have a physical existence or not, and to the degree we have forgotten that (which most of us have) this is a reminder.

    Now, please demonstrate how you know how to read and comprehend scripture better than any of the rest of us here.

    1. BF

      p.s. You might also want to explain to us how the above admonition applies to only to you and Mr. Nelson and not to me, Cory, Troy and yes, even the mentally and spiritually diseased Mr. Roberts.

      I submit that you and Nelson are so busy accusing everyone else of elitism, you fail to see it in yourselves.

  40. oldguy

    Stace I understand where you are coming from I really do I just think there is a better way as for some death is the easy way out.

  41. Troy Jones

    Oldguy:

    Good question and thanks for asking. This discussion will actually be healing for me:

    Eric Robert should be placed in a maximum security setting that insures he is not a threat to anyone, even if he is always under some form of constant restraint. His standard level of human interraction (beyond what is minimally required) is isolation with the exception of access to a spiritual director of his choice with the approval of the Warden.

    He must be required to make himself available to the family of Ron Johnson whenever they reasonably request and listen quietly to anything they have to say (in person, via a barrier of phone/video). If he gets to respond to the family, it is their sole option. If the family undergoes any grief counseling and consents to it being filmed and shown to him, he must watch it. He must listen to any briefings with regards to how the family is dealing with their grief and their life without their loved one, Ron Johnson. Especially because he asked for suicide by the state (similar to suicide by cop), his cell must be strictly controlled to prevent him from killing himself.

    All of his extra privileges must have both the approval of the Warden and the family so he knows for the rest of his life, his quality of life is dependent on the mercy of Ron Johnson’s family. Also, his diligence at performing any labor asked of him will be a consideration of any privileges given to him.

    If he has any financial resources, the very first use of them must be to pay for grief counseling for the family. Having the involvement of the family (at their exclusive option) in his privileges and giving them access to him as they desire (even if it is to yell or cry in his presence) as I described above and give them power of his quality of life is I think conducive (based on my reading and personal experience) to their transition through their grief and finding their “new normal.”

    The loss of a loved one affects the person physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I recognized on their faces what they were experiencing when I watched the video attached to this thread.

    Healthy grief/mourning is a process where the person transitions through several of 25-40 (depending how they are defined) different specific symptoms including things like anxiety attacks, anger, loss of memory, lethargy etc.

    “Successful” (if there really is such a thing) mourning is a process where the person in their own time ultimately transitions where all of the “symptoms” are gone or very seldom and mildly experienced leaving the person only with a profound missing of their loved one.

    The “best” grief is if the person experiences many symptoms over time of a non-debilitating level. Problems arise when one symptom or just a few become pronounced over excessive (excessive is personal as there is no magic or ideal time) time, called “unresolved grief” for this is where sickness develops that leads to unhealthy manifestations (addictions, depression, etc.) that can become debilitating.

    Let me touch on just one, anger, which I imagine they are probably experiencing (even people who have nobody to be angry experience it, usually toward God, themself, their loved one, or someone they imagine could have prevented their loss). I think it is relevant in this example because I can’t imagine any execution ever occurring within a year (I will explain later why a year is significant). Prolonged anger (or any symptom that prevents transitioning) becomes all-consuming ultimately preventing them from appreciating the time they had with their loved one, remembering the good times with a smile and not tears, enjoying special times like holidays and family get-togethers, gets expressed too often to other family members experiencing their own grief, and ultimately moving to the ideal of missing their loved one with a grateful heart.

    One of the grief books I read talked about how those who lose someone at the hands of another (murder or medical mistake) have a unique struggle dealing with anger as they wait for the person to be executed (or waiting for potential professional sanction in the case of a doctor). They mistakenly think this “resolution” will give them closure, not understanding there is no real closure as missing their loved one will always keep the “suffering” present (which is healthy and normal). Dealing with the loss of a loved one is really a process of finding their “new normal.” The “old normal” is gone forever.

    Remembering each person’s time to go through the grief symptoms is unique, generally anger should be gone within six months. Anger that goes past a year is almost always an indication it has caused “unresolved grief” making the person sick in some way.

    P.S. I don’t claim to be a educated expert on grief but I am in the process and have read probably 20 books (quit counting at 13 and afterwards don’t finish every book after I get the gist) on it and think about it daily. I know some might make the accusation this is “about me.” But, for all of us, our experiences shape our outlook on everything. More than I want ANYTHING to happen to Eric Robert, I want Ron Johnson’s family to find their “new normal” as soon possible, live with no unresolved grief. A tragedy has already occurred at the hand of Eric Robert. Another doesn’t have to occur.

    My own grief didn’t change my mind on the death penalty as that position had been reached years ago. But it does convict me that executing him will not help them resolve their anger. And, if executing him would help, it almost would have had to have already occurred for them to find their “new normal” in a timely manner. My pastor and counselor (independently) both allowed me to wallow in anger for a time. But after six months, they began to force me to deal with it directly.

    I think I still suffer from it (and I have nobody to rationally be angry with) to a small degree. I can abolutely assure you if I had someone to be rationally angry with (ala Eric Robert), I would be much sicker as I would be holding onto it much more fervently. For me I had to “forgive” God for taking her and myself for how I failed my daughter before I could move on. If there is a way for Ron Johnson’s family to transition without forgiving Eric Robert, I don’t know of it and can’t imagine it.

    As I look back on my journey, my Pastor is right when he said I gave up each one of my symptoms with “claw marks” as I tried to hold onto them as a false consolation for my loss. My heart deeply weeps when I imagine how many “claw marks” it will take for Ron Johnson’s family to resolve their anger. In fact, I can’t imagine it.

    1. Stace Nelson

      How many of your loved ones will be personally involved with taking care of Eric Robert or an equivelent violent murder?

      Please explain why the death penalty is not an appropriate punishment, and why it ia not justice for society and the victims of his crime.

      Protection and defense of society is only a partial facet of capitol punishment.

      1. Stace Nelson

        With both you and Bill’s admitted obvious lack of understanding, experience, or education, on this complex matter, and the morale implications, I can understand your refusal to respond..

        1. Troy Jones

          I admit nothing. I do not find any evidence that in the aggregate you have any greater combination of understanding, experience, or education on the depth of this complex issue than me. And, I don’t certainly accept you have superior morals to mine.

          1. Stace Nelson

            Mr. Jones,
            Do you not find it ironic that we are stuck with a president who had no experience’ however, he was sure he had ALL the answers on every subject and knew more than the experts. How is that working out for the USA?

            Must be a liberal thing to deny the obvious.

            Well at least you are a Reagan Conservative in firm standing with the Gipper on this, ooops! Forgot, only in a bizzare kumbaya universe where you were able to “convert” him AFTER he passed away.

            Well, at least you have your fellow “conservatives” Bill Fleming and Larry Kurtz on this one and as long as you are a self proclaimed expert on grief counseling..

            馃榾

  42. Duh

    It’s simple. Execute the serious criminals who have no regard for humanity and will extinguish anyone who stands in their way and who match the legal criteria for the death penalty.

    Save the unborn, by which Jeremiah confirms that a person is a person from conception. What else would that quote mean. God doesn’t recognize and ackowledge blobs, only human beings with souls.

    If I have to stand at the pearly gates and justify supporting the execution of miscreant slime, line me up. I think I’ll get a pass. Nonetheless, I’m done with this. All of this wannabe intellectual bantering is circular and serves no purpose. You’re wrong and I’m right.

    1. Bill Fleming

      No, the Jeremiah verse asserts that a person (specifically Jeremiah) is a person BEFORE conception. Read it again. So, if you’re wrong about that, what else might you be wrong about, Mr. Duh?

  43. Troy Jones

    Bill, the “Before I formed you” phrase is generally if not universally considered to refer to conception, the moment life is “breathed” into the person.

    1. Bill Fleming

      Okay, Troy. But that’s not what the word “before” means. Besides your reading doesn’t correspond to what we know to be true via biological science. I understand this to be a reference to spiritual form predating life form. Perhaps we can discuss this some other time, or in some other, less emotionally charged environment?

    1. Bill Fleming

      Okay Duh, is a zygote a “form?” Is an egg a “form?”

      Words either mean something or they don’t. If you insist instead that the only human “form” is a completely formed human being, it seems to me you defeat your own argument. But you’re welcome to believe any thing you please, of course.

      1. Bill Fleming

        We now have two other words besides “inalienable” that people here appear unable to define. Apparently the words “before” and “formed” don’t mean what they mean in the dictionary either.

        I’m starting to understand why these arguments never get anywhere. No one seems to agree on the definition of terms.

  44. Stace Nelson

    Bill and Troy, please explain how many violent murders either of you have dealt with personally as a victim, police officer, state attorney, judge, or prison guard that you have the expertise to claim that a violent murderer like Eric Robert is rendered permanantly safe for life simply by changing his security level of incarceration.

    1. BF

      Four. Peter Horkey was the most frightening. I used to feed and shave him. I was a psychiatric aide. Ordway Ward, Yankton State Hospital, circa 1970.

      1. Stace Nelson

        Please explain to the good public the medication level of these patients in the clinical setting at that time which required the patient to need assistance in such activities as eating and if you have any formal law enforcement, criminal justice, or corrections educational bacground, training, or employment experience.

        Mr Jones, please also explain your expertise in the areas.

        1. BF

          Feeding them amounted to passing the trays through the bars of their cells. I don’t recall giving them meds. Can’t remember the details of their charts. The ones I worked with were pretty lucid as I recall. We had some interesting conversations.

          They needed help shaving because they were not to be trusted with the razor, of course.

          Curiously though they were not restrained while I was doing the shaving. The one guy with the big mustache (not Horkey… can’t remember his name) looked you right in the eye all the while you were doing the shaving.

          I was told by the other aides that if you cut any of the mustache off, he really gets pissed. I was careful not to find out if that was true or not.

          I didn’t work on this ward (Ordway) all the time, just once in a while. Mostly I was on Pierce with the geriatrics. (It was my part time job while I was in college.)

          The Pierce building is now part of the State Penitentiary, I’m told.

  45. duh

    Bingo. Easy to pass judgment living the sheltered life. If either of these gentlemen ever faced the horror of a murder, I think they would have a different outlook.

  46. Troy Jones

    Bill, I didn’t know an American had to have direct personal experience to study, consider and have views on matters of public policy.

    Here is what I know: Donald Moeller and Charles Rhines have been on South Dakota’s death row for almost 20 years, Briley Piper for nearly 10, all without further incident of harm to anyone. Can anyone give me examples of where a death row inmate has caused harm to another? It will take a long list to exceed the number of wrongly convicted and executed. But, those wrongly executed are just collateral damage so I don’t know why I bring them up.

    1. BF

      Yes Troy, I’m a little surprised at Stace’s elitism here. (…okay, not really…)

      Suffice it to say that the situation on Ordway was very organized. I didn’t feel it was especially any more dangerous than some of the construction jobs I worked on later. And hey, somebody had to do it, right?

  47. Stace Nelson

    Gentlemen,
    Is it elitism or arrogance for two such persons as yourself with nothing more than a newspaper & TV cursory laymen understanding of three very complex disciplines, to come on here and proclaim Eric Robert is safe by simply changing his level of incarceration?

    You both go well beyond policy discussion and assert yourselves as authorities on a complex issue in which you have 0 qualifications to do so, all the while deriding someone with actual education, extensive training, and experience with the subject matter.

    It would be suicidal for a cancer victim to take your expert medical advice to keep their cancer as their treatment from a 40+ year ago psychiatric aide and his fellow uneducated, untrained, and unexperienced layman “expert.”

    Yet you two in your lack of expertise claim that society is safe from the Eric Roberts of the world simple because you believe so in your abject lack of credentials in a field dealing with the most dangerous creation in the world.

    Good thing Troy is almost an expert on grief, if your cancer treatment for society’s Roberts are adapted, the retention ot the 20 books he said he read, will be sorely needed.

    But what do I know, I actually have extensive training, education, and extensive experience in the areas of LE, criminal justice, and corrections. http://www.StaceNelson.com

  48. Stace Nelson

    Gentlemen, your comments go way beyond picy discussion. The readers can see that you have posted extensively here with forceful statements and absolute statements on the issue to include Troy’s amazing claim that Robert will never kill again.

    It would be suicidal for a cancer patient to take advice from a 40+ ago psychiatric aide and his no experience, no training, and no education friend.

    In this case, the cancer is not simple cells, but the most dangerous creature God ever created that has already killed, and has promised to kill again.

    Elitism? Or simple ignorant arrogance to believe you two know more than someone with actual extensive training, education, and experience on this issue http://www.StaceNelson.com ?

    If only Bill & Troy could be the ones to take care of Eric Robert. Unfortunately, if their ideas are in fact adopted, we will have more and more funerals for good people like Ron Johnson.

    Good thing Troy is almost an expert on gried for having read almost 20 books on the matter, we will need him.

    Have a good day, Doctors..

  49. Troy Jones

    Mr. Nelson,

    If it is expertise you need, I assume if I provided a reputable study or source with greater experience than you demonstrating that risk of harm from Eric Robert is less than what our general population prison guards, police officers, and a host of other people are exposed every day, you will reconsider your position? How about if I can prove it is more likely we will execute an innocent person than a prison guard will be harmed by a max security prisoner?

    And don’t play the family member card. For 15 years, I dealt with and prayed for a family member in the trenches of law enforcement including many times his life was threatened, I have a niece who wants to pursue the same career, and the son of a good friend who is a guard in our prison. Your continued assertion you are the only one who cares (or those who agree with you) or only your views matter is . . . . well, odd. In America, nearly all issues (especially when it is a matter that includes values, morals and application of prudential judgment based on each person’s intellect, study and experience) most people just say when everything has been said, we must agree to disagree.

    If your standard is absolute safety, we need to rethink alot of things. How many people have the same criminal history of Eric Robert (pre-Ron Johnson) are currently in the general population of our prison? Should we execute everyone with that profile to make sure our guards are safe?

    The death penalty has many factors to be considered in which you are no more an expert than I and your opinion is no more weighty than mine.

    1) Heirarchy of rights (inalienable, enumerated, inferred), the proper reconciliation when rights or persons rights are in conflict. One has to be highly educated and experienced in philosophy and law. Neither of us are experts by most people’s standard but I will put up my reading of philosophy and theoretical law against yours.

    2) How we apply punishment and what is just in pursuit of justice, knowing Justice (capital J) is beyond us because of our imperfections. Our legal system intentionally separates law enforcement (police), judge, jury and lawmaker for a reason. How we apply punishment and what is just is the perogative of each and every citizen, not just the views of the police. In fact, it is wholly rational to ask if the police are too close to the matter to be objective. I don’t hold that position but it is rational. But I do hold the position my values and morals are as relevant to what is just punishment as anyone elses, including the police.

    3) What is cost effective. In trying to kill Donald Moeller, I suspect it is highly possible we have spent more money trying to kill him than we would spend if we just waited for him to die a natural death. In fact, it is pretty much not disputed overall, the less costly alternative is to just lock up without possibility of parole than to pursue the death penalty.

    4) What is best for the victim’s families. While I suspect I am certainly better read on this issue than you and at least currently more intimately involved in what is called “out of order” (which includes grief, I don’t consider myself an expert. I just know I have a perspective I seldom see discussed openly related to the issue and gave my thoughts because it ties to what I would do with Eric Robert in response to a question from old guy. If you have an expert resource which shows execution serves a purpose to to help families and what percentage that is, I would love to see it.

    5) Practical consideration on whether we can fairly administer death. Most of the conservatives I listed assert we can’t. As one basically said, as one skeptical of much of the power given to government, why would government be able to kill its citizens with perfection?

    6) Is it moral, is it just punishment (this is different than #2 even if it appears the same)? This is a matter each and every American’s say is important.

    Since death is 100% irreversible, if the death penalty can’t pass each and every tests with absolute surety, I think it is entirely rational to question whether it should be deployed.

    Or should we set some bars like:

    1) What percentage of wrongful executions are acceptable? 1%, 5%, 10%?

    2) What cost of incarceration vs. cost of execution (including pursuing approval to excecute) ratio is acceptable. If cost of incarceration is 50%, is it ok to still execute even if more expensive? 75%, 90%?

    3) What risks should we expose prison guards to when guarding an Eric Robert? Should it be no more risky than being a cop or a general population prison guard? Should it be half as risky? Or should it be 0%? The lower % we pick, we need to understand it will increase the risk of wrongful executions.

    You are correct many issues were raised more than just policy questions. They go to questions of morals, what it means to be human, values, and the like. But we aren’t talking about set-backs for neighborhoods or the speeding limit or what is the proper amount of support of an obscure government program. We are talking about whether we should kill another person, made in God’s image. I argue the same principles with regard to the infirm, unborn, etc. with equal vehemence. Life is the greatest gift given to each person, even the to the most ugly among us.

  50. Stace Nelson

    “Dr” jones,
    Why do my short posts get shut down in moderation yet your novel length bloviation fly through?

    Would you invest your family’s financial security with someone having no experience, training, or specific education? Most not obscured by a giant ego would say “absolutely not!”

    Well if you don’t have any qualifications on a subject and put yourself out there as an expert, you might as well talk them to death.. Who else does that?

    1. Bill Fleming

      What in the world does that mean, Nelson?

      Starting from the top, Troy asked you two very reasonable questions.

      Please do us a favor and answer them Yes or No:

      1. If Troy provided you with a reputable study or source (one with greater experience than you have) demonstrating that the risk of harm from Eric Robert is less than that which regular prison guards, police officers, and a host of other people are exposed to every day, will you reconsider your position?

      Yes, or No?

      2. If Troy I can prove it is more likely we will execute an innocent person than it is that a prison guard will be harmed [or killed] by a maximum security prisoner, will you reconsider your position?

      Yes, or No?

      I figure maybe if we break it up into little chunks, it will be easier for you to digest. So let’s just start at the top.

      Plus, this way, you won’t have to wear your thumbs out on your Blackberry, because you’ll only have to type two words.

      And that’s really all we need to know for now.

      (…oh yeah, and don’t go flying off the handle saying you’re the only one who has any empathy for people who do law enforcement work, because everybody here knows that is bogus. We all do.)

        1. Stace Nelson

          It means, Bill, you two gentlemen have made your careers touting your credentials and assuring people that you knew what you were doing with their monies and careers. That is just money.

          America is viewed now in a decline with massive unemployment, and an economy killing national debt because of another bloated ego liberal who thought he was an expert on everything to after having the qualifying career as a “community organizer.”.

          Neither you nor Troy have an ounce of credability between you. Please, feel free though to apply all the studies your learned expertise feels is appropriate to support your positions. According to you and Troy, I am not qualified to counter your learned positions.

            1. Stace Nelson

              You answer all the questions posed herein that you have totally blown off because they show you two haven’t a clue other than a Clowards & Pivens effort and a bloated ego that is in denial.

              Then go get some expertise that America finds tangible in employment, Experience,or education.

              You both have been shown to be blow hards with not even a sliver of expertise between the two of you.

              Arging with an ignorant drunk used to be funny, arguing with you & Troy is like that but with a scary sad twist.

  51. Troy Jones

    I assure you I have no control over what gets through. Are you using your phone? That impacts it, I think. Or maybe it filters for complete thoughts. It is amazing what technology can do now days.

    All I’m saying my expertise is certainly no less than yours, especially based on the depth you have articulated your views on this complex matter. By the way, none of my thoughts are really novel. I borrow (or steal) most of them who are experts interlaced with my experience, values, etc.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr Jones,
      Your ego is only overshadowed by your ignorance.

      Neither you nor Bill have even the basic qualifications to work in any of the fields we are discussing.

      Care to put your money where your mouth is? How about this, $2,000 towards charity to the first one of us that can land a teaching gig instructing criminal justice, law enforcement, criminal investigations, corrections, or a combo of all. Or get interviewed for a national level interview on any of the subjects as an expert.

      As they say in the Marines, money talks, BS walks. Bon Voyage, Doc Jones.

  52. Duh

    I have no doubt that if Capital Punishment were banned and the criminals were put in death row-like conditions (22 1/2 hours a day in a cell) the bleeding hearts would then contend that this was cruel and unusual punishment. In blink of an eye, we would be right back to RJ Johnson-like scenarios.

  53. CaveMan

    This seems to be the blog that just keeps on giving; though the substance does not justify the fight. We Republicans are really good at splitting hairs over things that we have little control over and at the end of the day don’t mean much to the general public. Unless one of you has a mother or daughter or wife who has had an abortion; or a familial relationship ended causing a capital judgement—-get back to the economy—–which is what 99% of us are concerned with. Five or so of you are so Hell bent on being right that you have lost all cognitive forward placement of your cerebral bets of what really matters.

    Duh, BF, Stace, TJ, and a few Anons you are all fricken losing it as far as I can tell. I don’t care which of you is right or wrong on the death penalty. This is like putting the Lutheran church above the Catholic church and pulling straws on who is in third place. NO one wins these arguements and are of zero merit.

    Nice re-reading material for you all but c’mon folks–like I said before the difference between genius and insanity is a fine line. And some of you are closer than that.

    BF; sorry to have to lump you in the middle of a bunch of screaming Elephants–somehow you seem to fit well. 馃檪

    1. New Kitchen Yet?

      Watch out for them slivers in your butt from the fence, Pard.

      Two of these pinheads would last less time with Eric Robert than it takes you to take your tooth brush out of the drawer.

      Imagine if we had a foriegn policy as these two would our penal system, think Jimmy Carter on estrogen.

      1. Sigmund

        I am curious Herr Doctor, was the reverting to hiding your identity part of the self-assessment process?

  54. Troy Jones

    OK. I will admit you are more likely to get a job in law enforcement than me. I couldn’t even apply. To do so would be dishonest since I have responsibilities that would prevent me from performing the job.

    But as you say, money talks, bs walks. So, let’s see what we both know.

    We take two classes online. The one with the worse grade in each class has to give $2,000 to a charity of the winner’s choice (I do have a small caveat, I don’t give to charities where I oppose their mission so I’d like you to designate the charity up-front. I’ll give you the same privilege to approve of my charity).

    Each of our final grades will be posted here on the War College and all tests or essays will be posted so people can see what we each know on the matters surrounding the death penalty.

    You pick a course you think would be relevant to the death penalty. Any course.

    My choice (or one comparable if this isn’t available on-line) is this course from Fordham Law (well known for its legal theory).

    This course will examine the theoretical foundations and practical implications of natural law theory. Because ?natural law theory? is often taken to mean many different things, one of the course?s first aims will be to establish a common vocabulary for identifying and distinguishing the various kinds of natural law theory (e.g., ?natural law theory? as a kind of moral theory, as a kind of legal theory, and as a kind of theory about human rights). Our ensuing discussion will open onto a series of questions that will guide us through the rest of the course: ?What is the nature of justice?? ?What are the different kinds of justice and what does it mean to have a right?? ?What do rights and justice have to do with one another?? ?What is the nature of law?? ?What is the difference between positive law and natural law?? ?Is law reducible to the will of the strongest, or is it the case ? as the natural law tradition holds ? that unjust law is no law at all?? ?What is meant by ?the good? and ?the common good??? ?What is the nature, scope, and justification of authority (both legal authority and other kinds of authority)?? ?What is the nature and purpose of punishment?? ?And how are we to make sense of the natural law tradition in light of our contemporary understandings of autonomy, governmental neutrality, and reasonable pluralism??

    The course will not only introduce the classical natural law tradition (based mainly on the thought of Aristotle and Aquinas), but will place this classical tradition in dialogue with contemporary thinkers. The ultimate aim of the course will be to achieve an understanding of the natural law tradition and its relevance for a variety of contemporary legal issues.

  55. Troy Jones

    P.S. I should have added the course description says the following so we both can take it and have the same chance of success.

    “No prior acquaintance with philosophy or jurisprudence is assumed; the relevant concepts will be developed in class.”

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,
      Interesting that you do not respond to my post as per custom and design.. Not so much when one understands who it is doing so.

      You have no academic standings in any of the fields we have discussed, no experience, and no training. Only in your arrogance would you presume you could be hired.

      You arrogantly claimed we have the same qualifications in regards to criminal justice, law enforcement, corrections, and criminal investigations.

      You were offered a chance to put up or shut up. Your offer to go back to school to take courses in these fields is your admission that you are bereft of ANY qualifications in these fields.

      Since you admit you do not even have the basics of these fields, you lose.

      Please feel free to attend the courses I start teaching next fall. Please feel free to review the two documentary crime films produced by the DOD/Navy that I was interviewed on. Will hold off trumpeting the third documentary movie on rape that I was consulted on and produced by a Hollywood crew as it will be released next year.

      Come talk trash in 23 years after you get some training, education, and experience. Until then, I have lectures to prepare to give.

      1. Stace Nelson

        P.S. I will get you the charity for you to send the $2K to. Not holding my breath, I experienced how liberals pay their gentlemanly engagements with Bill last fall when SHS lost. 馃榾

          1. BF

            (The “charity” in this case was that Nelson wanted steak and multiple beers. I believe I owe him two steaks. He can buy his own alcohol.)

              1. BF

                Done. I’ll send a check for $100 with “Gift from Stace Nelson” on the memo line. Glad we could agree that you don’t really need any more beer.

  56. CaveMan

    TJ I actually love your idea. A contest based upon known relevant factors of intellect using actual scores to determine a winner and a loser.

    I see two bulls in a pasture, both of great magnitude and condition, fighting to the bitter end. 馃檪

  57. Troy Jones

    Caveman,

    You and others have hinted this has been a bit insane. I have probably written several thousand words (I know I am too verbose) on this. Maybe it is. But on issues I care about, I’m not expecting to change the mind of the persons posting who might have entrenched positions but appealing to those who are in the middle. I have always said, I’m just trying to get a few people to at least understand the other side, sometimes find common ground, and change at least one mind.

    And, I have gotten what I was after. I got a call from someone I know slightly well who told me they are looking at the issue anew. While supporting the death penalty, this person’s fiscal conservativism was always uncomfortable with the total cost to execute vs. life in prison and support of the unborn was uncomfortable with state-sanctioned killing.

    This person said this conversation reminded him of a conversation with a woman who is also opposed to abortion who said to him when she heard he supported the death penalty “Do you know the difference between an person on death row and baby about to be aborted? They are both unwanted and thought they can’t and shouldn’t be loved.” A statement he says haunts him more and more as he gets more involved in the defense of the unborn.

    This person said he still supports the death penalty today because he is not convinced we have the means to adequately protect society (the guards) from people like Eric Robert. So I took it upon myself to get him some information on that and he will do his own research.

    On a slightly related matter, this person asked if this was in any way pointed to the Attorney General or the judge. I said, “I have great personal respect for both of them. I understand the law and their oath to uphold it. My focus is to encourage the discussion if the law should be changed.”

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr jones,
      A normal person would give pause to second guessing the AG’s decision to prosecute the case as a capitol offense case and Judge Zell’s decision that such was an appropriate sentence. How is your ill-informed monday morning quarterback liberal campaign approach NOT pointed at their decisions? You are claiming that in this specific case the death penalty is wrong!

      How is that not an indictment of these two fine gentlemen’s decisions? Please show where the AG & judge were required to prosecute the case and adjudge it as capitol offense.

  58. Troy Jones

    Personally, I don’t use the reply function unless my answer is generally intended to be only for that person (as I did in response to insomniac at the beginning). Usually my response is for a broader audience.

    When others use it, I am often accused of not responding when reality is I just miss it unless I happen read all the way through the post. So, I generally just go to the end. Beat me for not following the rules, rules I didn’t know existed.

    I have no doubt you can and would be hired over me in the areas you so define and I admitted it.

    The reality you proposed a bet which you already had won and somehow think it proves anything is amazing. It would be like me proposing a bet on which one of us has read the most Aristotle, Socrates, Locke, Kant, Bacon, Rouseau, Madison, Aquinas, etc., think it moral to propose such a bet, and then expect one to pay.

    Granted, I definitely don’t think people with your experience are the ONLY people who can have a position on whether or not the state kills in their name but I do defend your right to have & express your opinion and apply your experience where you think relevant.

    I also think every American has the capacity to study, contemplate, and develop a legitimate view on all public policy matters.

    While I don’t think these areas are the primary areas to have experience to have a fully formed and informed position on the death penalty, I respect that you do which is why I offered to let you choose the course you think is relevant.

    I think the knowledge most relevant is in the area of the course I selected.

    What makes you think YOU know and should define what is the most relevant experience and knowledge?

    My proposal is to give each of us the perogative to determine what is relevant, have each of us demonstrate our knowledge to the public on the two areas, and let them decide.

    And, right now, I’m as convinced I could take the tests and do the essays required in that class and do better than you. So, if you have a time problem, (I would probably do it late at night), let’s determine the classes, allow a little time to study/read on our own to prepare, get the tests for each class and just take them.

    To your last post, they have the perogative under the law AS WRITTEN to pursue this as a capital case. While I wish they hadn’t, I understand this is their perogative. If they had done as I wish without legitimate basis under the law as written, I could see myself criticizing them for nullfying the law. I do think Judge Zell’s perogative to assess punishment could have been to give life without parole because Eric Robert asked for death so the greater punishment would have been to give him life. But, in total, the law AS WRITTEN, gives both discretion.

    My focus is to change the law which I fully believe they’d follow as well.

    I’m also confident neither of them take my expression of my views here as personal or professional criticism. Especially the AG knows I respect him and appreciate the job he is doing. We just disagree on this matter.

  59. CaveMan

    TJ one of the most memorable moments for me of the Clinton era was when Mother Theresa shook her finger at our President and scolded him on allowing America to murder the unborn. Her facial expression will forever be planted in my memory. One has to wonder if she also would say something similar covering our capital punishment laws. Knowing though that we have allowed both to become the rule of law says little for the greatest Christian country in the world and surely saddens God.

    I am sure that had I convinced the powers that be to allow rape, incest, and the life of the mother as conditions we would have passed the Anti-Abortion law and would now be embroiled in a court case of Supreme nature. And as with the Affordable Care Act many states have taken to court, we might have found a stampede into court over Roe VS Wade.

    The two hardest things to do in life are admit wrong and forgive wrongdoing. I am going to admit I may be wrong but am sticking to my guns until someone else proves it! 馃檪

  60. Stace Nelson

    Mr Jones,

    The issue was your claim Robert will never kill again with your advocation of life in prison and the credentials appropriate to make that determination.

    Reality would show a sane person how truly arrogant and absurd your that claims were that you are as equally or more qualified in the fields of law enforcement, criminal investigations, criminal justice, and corrections as you claimed. If you were, you would have similiar public acknowledgment of your credentials with like record of the public’s desires for your services.

    The fact you do not have that immediate validation that you should have if such was true, and I do, shows how truly asinine your previous claims are. Your whining about losing that point from the onset, when such was clear to begin with, bespeaks again of your unrealistic impression of yourself that BG alludes to in his posting.

    The last producer I just dealt with indicated they may want me for future documentary on suicides. I will let him know that you determined that your expertise is superior to mine AND your an expert on grief. I am sure they will be in touch with you.

    The rest of your bloviating contortions on your disrespect of their decisions, but not them, speak for themselves.

    1. Bill Fleming

      I’m sorry, but this is practically incomprehensible. Can anybody still reading this thread interpret it for me? I honestly can’t make heads or tails of it, it is so poorly written.

      If this represents the caliber of Mr. Nelson’s communication skills in his classes, I pity the students who have to try to comprehend what the hell he is trying to say.

    2. Anonymous

      You do realize that Troy’s daughter died a few years ago, which, while I am sure he has not brought the fact up for his own reasons, I will. I find the imense disrespect contained in your “expert on grief” comments infuriating. Troy, in regards to his mentioning his readings on dealing with loss, etc, is making the same claim that you have been making this WHOLE THREAD, which is a claim that PERSONAL EXPERIENCE has shaped his way of thinking, and understanding of a situation. It’s not your own personal experience, so he is automatically wrong? You studied law enforcement, and presumably psychology for service in NCIS, Troy studied it (psychology) after the loss of a loved one. Troy has, as far as I can tell, ceded the point that personal opinion and philosophical studies has shaped his view. And that is where this pissing match has added up to over 200 comments; you not recognizing, and or caring that it is a philosphical argument, one routed in natural law, not civil or criminal law, that is being made against the death penalty. In regards to whether or not we should kill Robert’s, I don’t care. I really don’t. But to be so willfully obtuse for what is going on a week now is unbelivable, though perhaps not so much for a politician. You don’t have to agree with Troy, who makes many sweeping generalizations, such as the one at the top of this thread; . But at least argue from the same premise, which hasen’t been done in this whole “debate”.

      1. Troy Jones Post author

        Anonymous,

        I just saw this post. Sydney’s death has re-ordered everything for me. I am up now as I still don’t sleep well. But she is still alive in a new way so she is not in a box only brought out on special occassions. The only reason i didn’t mention her by name is read Mr Nelsons first post where accused me of not knowing those who died in THE plane crash and using their name for nefarious reasons. Look at the context of my use in urging the use of Ron Johnson’s name (and not just calling him a prison guard) as a sign of respect and honor. It still pains me they took to calling themselves Mrs. Seven Others because their spouse ‘s name was often not listed when the matter of their death was discussed. I did not want Ron Johnson’s wife to start calling herself Mrs. Prison Guard.

        It was so hard not to tear him apart over that, I knew if I mentioned Sydney personally and he responded as he has, I would say something i would regret. In the end, I just asked for an apology, he first said no way, and then chose to apologize for hitting me so hard (not for the accusation itself).

        Nelson’s disregard of my experience in grief is no different from his disregard of every one of my thoughts and experiences. In the end, one has one choice- think like him or shut up. He
        thinks it is only his knowledge, experience, and views matter.

        While I appreciate your support greatly, rest assured i have learned to expect nothing decent or intelligent out of Stace Nelson. And he never surprises me.

        1. Anonymous

          Mr. Jones,

          Same guy here. I just want to say that while I disagree with you on most things here, I appreciate your ability to debate from principle and not shift blame, evade questions, or change topics. I lost my father 12 years ago to what was basically a heart attack. He was 44, and one of the most important people in my life. The caviler attitude on “knowledge of grief” by Rep. Nelson, and subsequent jerk-statments about his superior knowledge is immensely saddening. While it is directed at you, it disrespects all those who feel pain at the loss of one they have loved, including the family of Ron Johnson. No one can feel, or understand the pain felt by another over the loss of a loved one. It is personal, it is deep, and to inject ones self as a representative of how Ron Johnson’s family feels, which seems to be what Rep. Nelson is doing, is disgusting, . They feel how they feel. Do not take their pain and grief and us it as a cudgel for political attacks.

          Ok, I’m done here. Go ahead Rep. Nelson, Duh, etc., call me a commie, a liberal, a jerk. But all I ask is that you don’t claim to represent Ron Johnson’s family and the feelings. They can do that. Argue the policy, all that other stuff. But to take ones personal pain, pain that is not even yours, and wave it around like a bloody shirt is the lowest of the low in ethical behavior.

          Thank you for your response Mr. Jones. I hope you are able to rest better soon. I suf

        2. Anonymous

          Mr. Jones,

          Same guy here. I just want to say that while I disagree with you on most things here, I appreciate your ability to debate from principle and not shift blame, evade questions, or change topics. I lost my father 12 years ago to what was basically a heart attack. He was 44, and one of the most important people in my life. The caviler attitude on “knowledge of grief” by Rep. Nelson, and subsequent jerk-statments about his superior knowledge is immensely saddening. While it is directed at you, it disrespects all those who feel pain at the loss of one they have loved, including the family of Ron Johnson. No one can feel, or understand the pain felt by another over the loss of a loved one. It is personal, it is deep, and to inject ones self as a representative of how Ron Johnson’s family feels, which seems to be what Rep. Nelson is doing, is disgusting, . They feel how they feel. Do not take their pain and grief and us it as a cudgel for political attacks.

          Ok, I’m done here. Go ahead Rep. Nelson, Duh, etc., call me a commie, a liberal, a jerk. But all I ask is that you don’t claim to represent Ron Johnson’s family and the feelings. They can do that. Argue the policy, all that other stuff. But to take ones personal pain, pain that is not even yours, and wave it around like a bloody shirt is the lowest of the low in ethical behavior.

          Thank you for your response Mr. Jones. I hope you are able to rest better soon.

  61. Troy Jones

    Mr. Nelson,

    So does this mean you won’t take my challenge?

    Are you saying if an expert with greater credentials than you would assert Eric Robert can be reasonably prevented from killing again, you will back down on this portion of the discussion?

    Are you saying only a person with law enforcement experience may have a legitimate opinion on the death penalty?

    I hope these are sufficiently clear so I can get a simple yes or no answer. If you want to explain your answer, that is acceptable. Thank you.

  62. Anonymous

    Wow! I don’t know how Stace has kept this marathon up trying to enlighten the enlightened–Troy and BF. It truly is exhausting to me. Troy, I only ask that you consider the company you are keeping here. BF is truly one of the most irritating bloggers I’ve ever run across. I don’t think he can comprehend that the Constitution provides for the death penalty–enough said.

    1. Bill Fleming

      Yes, the Constitution at one time provided for slavery, discrimination against women and black people, and the abolition of alcohol as well. It also (fortunately) provided several means by which the Constitution could be amended, and a means by which people like me can make my political positions known to people who disagree with me without fear of Government or social retribution. If this irritates you, maybe you should take it up with our Nation’s Founders ? enough said.

      p.s. you know what irritates me? When anonymous cowards make personal attacks. Even so, I defend their right to do it, if not their character.

  63. CaveMan

    CaveMan

    November 3, 2011 at 10:09 am | Permalink

    Your comment is awaiting moderation

    TJ one of the most memorable moments for me of the Clinton era was when Mother Theresa shook her finger at our President and scolded him on allowing America to murder the unborn. Her facial expression will forever be planted in my memory. One has to wonder if she also would say something similar covering our capital punishment laws. Knowing though that we have allowed both to become the rule of law says little for the greatest Christian country in the world and surely saddens God.

    I am sure that had I convinced the powers that be to allow rape, incest, and the life of the mother as conditions we would have passed the Anti-Abortion law and would now be embroiled in a court case of Supreme nature. And as with the Affordable Care Act many states have taken to court, we might have found a stampede into court over Roe VS Wade.

    The two hardest things to do in life are admit wrong and forgive wrongdoing. I am going to admit I may be wrong but am sticking to my guns until someone else proves it!

    Reply

    1. Troy Jones

      Caveman,

      Back when I was authoring threads here, it was a chore to monitor what was caught in the filter. For the life of me, I couldn’t grasp what caught some and let others go. I don’t know if this is true but I read somewhere it can be if you are sending via a server location that gets identified as a spam source, it gets caught.

      But, the idea it is thought content is wrong. The system just doesn’t have the capability. If your post didn’t go through and you don’t see it right away, Bill Clay is not monitoring them at this moment. It is not uncommon for a thread that gets 20 posts to have 20 caught in the filter, of which 19 are spam and one legitimate post for one reason or another, is caught.

  64. Troy Jones

    Anonymous,

    I know who I have affiliated with on this issue. Yes, he can be irritating and this isn’t always a bad thing. I hope my posts on liberal blogs “prick” their beliefs too. His “pricks” can cause us to think about what we believe, why we believe it, and maybe even if we should give our beliefs another look . Whether our beliefs are reinforced, reconsidered or we just get insight into how our liberal neighbors think, we can be better for it.

    I often criticize liberals for using argumentum ad hominem attacks as justification for opposing an idea vs. considering the merits of the idea without regard to the advocate. This is an intellectually lazy means to dismiss the idea by pointing out a negative characteristic or unrelated belief of the person supporting it. It also personalizes every debate.

    The suggestion I should back off a belief I have independent of Bill just because he believes the same way is what I criticize liberals (and sometimes conservatives) for doing all the time, making an ad hominem attack.

    Bill and I disagree on 99 of 100 policy issues (maybe not that much but alot). Our rationale for agreement on this issue happens to be grounded in mostly a common ideal that crosses ideological boundaries (fidelity to the concept of individual rights). Isn’t this an American value?

    I know I’m at odds with most conservatives or Republicans (I think about 75% support the death penalty according to one poll I remember seeing) but I am united with 25% which includes many names we all respect greatly on other issues. The split on Democrats is about the 25-75% the other way. Independents are about 75-25% for the death penalty which is why it enjoys between a 55-60% support in the nation. By the way it was 80-20% for 20 years ago.

    I think if we took any two noted conservatives and compare their views on 100 issues and I doubt they would agree on much more than 75% and most of us would find the same difference. If I or you agreed on 100% with anybody, I think we would probably be guilty of not bringing our unique experiences to the table and thinking about the issues very deeply.

    But the difference wouldn’t mean the person is only 75% conservative. Conservativism is a way of thinking and not always positions. On this issue, I begin with a very strict interpretation and application of the term “inalienable rights” which is actually a very conservative way of thinking about the Constitution and Declaration of Independence.

    While there are other issues where I would concede my position is liberal in thought and position, I believe my view of the death penalty is wholly conservative in thought. The fact it is contrary to 75% of other conservatives in position does not necessarily detract from my conservative credentials any more than it does Ollie North or Brent Bozell. I’ve heard conservatives arguing for the death penalty with rationale that is wholly liberal in thought. Is it my position or my manner of thought that makes me a conservative? I think it is manner of thought.

    Read this thread closely and ask yourself how many substantive arguments have been raised against my laundry list of responses and how many were attempts to dismiss them as “liberal” or just because the person doesn’t appear to like me. The former are legitimate logically. The latter are called “logical fallacies”.

    In short, dismiss an idea (liberal or conservative) on its merits and not its source. Bill and I are together on this issue. Tomorrow, we’ll go back to disagreeing. In fact, we yesterday we argued offline about the Jeremiah verse noted above (which I intend to set him right when I have the time).

    Trust me. We have had our most vociferous conversations offline where we don’t throw “pricks” but full through the body sword piercings.

  65. CaveMan

    TJ;
    Though I hide behind a smoke screen; which is of some importance today, we make waves in our lives by always telling the truth and coming to any point with anyone who differs on important discussions.

    I have been called a “Liberal” by certain friends of mine who watch what I do and what I say. To that charge my response has always been “If the people with zero power have no say in what the government does than we are all pretty much worthless objects of repression.” That said the voice of the unborn, the mentally retarded, the comatose, and the unseen must be advanced in any society which promotes life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness an sequestered right.

    Call me what you want but at the end of the day most people feel like their voice is not heard well; making my judgment of who is really important of the highest regard.

    You place very high on my list irregardless of where you came from, what you are doing today, or where you are headed. Today you are right on in my mind. And that is all that really matters to me. :)_

  66. Shellback

    Troy Jones,
    I read your post above about President Reagan from a link on facebook.

    What kind of low life steals who President Reagan was to justify their liberal views and then claims they are conservative views?

    I bet you are some bean counting pogue who has never put his life on the line for anything. Enjoy the freedoms that better people than you provide, as you stab them in the back.

    1. BF

      Did you write this, Nelson? Or was it one of your pogues? Either way, it is insulting to everyone here, including Ronald Reagan. No wonder you were unwilling to put your name to it. Coward.

      1. BF

        As per the content of this entire discussion, there is no one, absolutely no one who can “provide” another their right to liberty.

        The only two things Government can do regarding freedom are to secure/protect our natural inalienable rights, or to limit (alienate) them.

        And since limiting them is a de facto violation of a God given endowment, it should be done with the lightest possible human footprint.

        That is the substance of Troy’s whole argument, and also the essence of the Ronald Reagan quotes Troy provided.

        Finally, there is nothing at all “liberal” about the these values. They are conservative to the core.

        I’ll go so far as to submit that if conservatives don’t stand for that principle, (liberty as a natural right) they don’t stand for anything.

      1. MA1 (SW/AW) "Shellback"

        It appears that you Troy Jones and Bill Fleming are the same “I, me, me, me I” person on here. Do you people not have a frickin job!!!? Who are you to bust my jewels about posting under an assumed name?

        you (Bf/Troy/Bill) have a lot of disgust for someone who has actual experience serving. I have read nothing from any of you that shows you have anything near Congressman Nelson has.

        While I am fine with being confused for him, I doubt he would claim to be a Sailor. He clearly ate you(Bf/Troy/Bill) lunch.

  67. ANNON

    If we are to apply Stacey’s way of thinking that to have experience makes one an “expert” then we all know who the Governor would call on first for any manner of issues while keeping the best interests of the entire state of SD in the foreground. Having been called upon, both publically and privately, by serveral administrations,Troy you are the expert.

    1. Troy Jones

      Annon,

      Good point. If it is just about expertise and experience, there will always be someone who can claim possesses it greater than another until we have a super-elite making all the decisions.

      Just as I reject Mr. Nelson’s application of his personal “expertise and experience” as a prerequisite for having the right to weigh in on an issue, I do so for myself. Yes, we should consider someone’s comments in light of their experience, etc. but it doesn’t give make them the absolute authority on the matter. In America, we depend on the collective experience and insight of all. It is the hidden secret to a democracy as we reject a elite. More imporantly, when it involves morals and values, all people have the right to speak equally.

      1. MA1 (SW/AW) "Shellback"

        (Bf/Troy/Bill) or “Bravo Foxtrot” as you should be called:

        You seem to think you are the only one who has a right to speak and you attack anyone who disagrees. You attack Congressman Nelson and me for daring to state what America has done for the safety of people and justice with a hatred you dont share for the killer.

        What does that say about your enlightenment crap you are trying to screw Americans over with your lets all hug crap?

        You are an idiot reading from a book claiming to have the answer because you read a book by another enlighten idiot from the safety of your no risk life.

        Who hasnt lost a loved one, lose one to murder and then call it qualification.

        You (Bf/Troy/Bill) are an idiot. Congressman Nelson, with all due respect, you are an idiot for wasting the taxpayers time and money discussing this with this hateful person who only has love for his idea of himself and this convicted murder.

        1. Anonymous

          Dipstick,

          Bill Fleming and Troy Jones are clearly two different people. Checkout any other thread on this site. They agree on almost nothing. But they are able to do it with substance; as opposed to the ill informed bloviating you seem to have engaged in from your first comment on this site.

          1. MA1 (SW/AW) "Shellback"

            I have read enough to see that (BF/Troy/Bill) are close enough to be the same person and the world is clearly about “me, me,me, I, I, I” to them. It is all about how they feel and not the reality of the murder this blog was about. Why would anyone want to go to South Dakota after seeing the ugly attack idiots here? According to these posts this Troy idiot runs the state as a book reading expert on everything with real life experience in nothing. It is idiots like this that claim they are smarter than everyone else just because they have a theory. Let this idiot pass his theory on President Reagan on capital death punishment then he will claim he converted President Reagan into a flaming liberal pacifist that apologized to the world like the illegal immigrant in the white house. (BF/Troy/Bill) you are a flaming liberal idiot whether you are one or three as the idiot above claims. Stick to attacking good people and stay out of dealing with evil murders as that is all you know how to do. Enlighten? My last wasted time on idiot liberals. I wont be visiting South Dakota if this is the evidence of the people there. I would hate to get thrown in jail for smacking someone for spitting on me for my service.

            1. BF

              Are you still in the Navy, “Shellback”? If so, please take good care. I understand your need for anonymity. But not your need to insult the very people you are protecting.

              If no, thank you for your service. I hope you feel comfortable enough to come out of your shell sometime soon.

  68. Stace Nelson

    Wow! After an absolutely wonderful family vacation , I am home and unfortunately back up on the internet to view some of the most bizarre ego-centric behavior I have ever witnessed.

    First and foremost, I reject 100% the insane mischaracterization & misstatements of my comments and participation in this DISCUSSION on the murder of Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson, by Bill Fleming, Troy Jones, and any other of their anonymous/partially anonymous manifestations BF, etc?.

    It is clear from the posts herein who attacked those that dare cite a contrary opinion to the liberal idea of clemency for Eric Robert or that President Reagan was a closet liberal that would have been converted to such thinking by Mr. Jones if President Reagan had lived longer.

    Mr. Jones, & Mr. Fleming, in regards to your repeated intentional misstatements of my comments, mischaracterization of who I am, your drama queen efforts to paint yourselves as victims, and your personal insults to include calling me a “coward.” Those actions & statements indict your credibility & who you two are, not me.

    Mr. Jones, you will excuse me if I decline your goofy offer to retake basic LE, CJ, CI, or corrections courses over with you. The issue was your claims that you were equally qualified in those areas as I, your admission that you need to actually take all those basic courses, as I prepare to teach them, paints your initial comments in the proper light.

    The issue of the original blog by “Billy Clay” was that Eric Robert received an appropriate sentence under the laws of the great state of South Dakota for the brutal murder of Senior Corrections Officer Ron Johnson. I fully support AG Jackley in his decisions to seek the death sentence and Judge Zell’s sentencing Eric Robert to death. It was morale, it was just, it was legal, it was Constitutional, it was appropriate punishment for the crime committed, and it will be appropriate justice for society upon completion.

    I will let President Reagan put this whole matter in the proper perspective: http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2006/6/28/170302.shtml

  69. BF

    So much for my relief that this thread had finally come to an end. It’s been an unnecessarily long and difficult discussion, largely due to Mr. Nelson’s boneheaded intransigence and seemingly pathological paranoia.

    Even so, nowhere on this thread did I characterize him as being a coward, unless of course he is admitting that he was in fact posting under names different from his own in order to deceive people here that there are others who wish to make ad hominem attacks on Mr. Jones besides himself.

    This is cowardly on two fronts, the first being the ad hominem from behind a false identity, and the second, creating a sock puppet troll to reinforce ones (admittedly) weak position.

    Full disclosure. BF and Bill Fleming are one and the same person. If that hasn’t been obvious all along, let’s be crystal clear about it.

    The reason for doing it is that there is no reason. I use multiple computers depending on where I am when I’m posting some are logged in here one name, some the other and I don’t think to change them.

    I trust that clears up any doubt as to the identity posting as BF.

    Now, if Mr. Nelson could do the same regarding the anonymous posters here who have been insulting Mr. Jones and me, perhaps he can put this thread to rest.

    Time to fess up Stace, are those posers you or not. If yes, your behavior has been cowardly. If no, you are just being paranoid. Take your pick.

    For my part, I don’t intend to write anything further here, having made all of my arguments as clearly as I know how.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Fleming,
      The only one posting here under multiple identities are you and probably Mr. Jones. In that you CHOOSE to admittedly alternately using the common initials “BF,” while also posting as “Bill Fleming,” makes you more of a coward than those that you repeatedly assail, as you do so with the obvious intent of supporting your posts herein. Your arrogance in asserting that all know that “BF” is you, is more of your egocentricity.

      The posts authored by me are ALL clearly marked with my name, website, & email address.

      In your reply to “Shellback” above, you rant that it is I and call me a coward. If you had any clue, you would know that it could not be me. Additionally, if Mr. Jones had any honor he would have confirmed that none of the anonymous/assumed name posts are me as he has administrator privileges on this site and he can see the computer specifics of the poster.

      Being called a coward by you is like being called ugly by a blob fish. 馃榾

      I know that you & Mr. Jone’s egocentric natures find this hard to believe; however, your offensive posting is offensive to more than just me. Clearly there are others out there that comprehend the vile nature of your dishonest attacks and the appropriateness of the death penalty in this case.

      I am sure that we have not suffered through the last onslaught of you & Mr. Jones bile in this or other matters, regardless of your statements to the contrary

  70. BF

    I count at least 8 different people posting as “anonymous” on this thread alone. Surely they are not all the same person as you maintain. The problem with your argument, Nelson is that you don’t have one.

    1. SN

      Clearly that was not what was said. You do realize this is a blog and that people can post as little or as much as they want to regardless of the ideas that you or Mr. Jones have that it is a formalized “debate?”

      So are you not Bill Fleming and did you not choose now to post under another identity that is not readily clear is Bill Fleming even though Bill Fleming said he was done posting?

      1. Bill Fleming

        SN, yes, I am BF as per above:

        “Full disclosure. BF and Bill Fleming are one and the same person. If that hasn?t been obvious all along, let?s be crystal clear about it.”

        As far as I know, no other “BF’s” have ever posted here.

        Nor have any other “SN’s” until today.

        p.s. I am currently at my other computer where I am logged in under my full name.

        1. Stace Nelson

          Ironic, a man that militantly claims his liberal ideas are the answers to all the problems in the USA cannot even figure out how to change his name in that little slot above the comment submission section for this blog. 馃榾

          You repeatedly attack people who post under even unique assumed identities all the while posting under several identities and claiming some weird egocentric exception with the explanation that the world knows you are “BF.”

          Clearly you cannot be “BF” as Bill Fleming promised earlier: “I don?t intend to write anything further here, having made all of my arguments as clearly as I know how.” 馃榾

            1. Stace Nelson

              Moses! Do you not get tired of playing the victim, Mr. Wolf?

              You didn’t answer any questions, just more BS from BF, or is it BS from Bill Fleming?

              Granting favors to the unclean masses, so benevolant of you King BF.

                1. Stace Nelson

                  Is that you “BF?” pr have you figured out how to type in your name in the “name” section? 馃榾

                  You are joking, right? See the many posts above. Too many to waste my time reposting when you didn’t answer to begin with.

                  We are all just so overwhelmed that you show us the “courtesty” of responding to us at all! 馃榾

  71. Troy Jones Post author

    Stace Nelson: “if Mr. Jones had any honor he would have confirmed that none of the anonymous/assumed name posts are me as he has administrator privileges on this site and he can see the computer specifics of the poster.”

    I do not have such authority. I can not confirm or deny if Mr. Nelson posted under an assumed name (or if I do, do not know how to do it) at his computer or used a different computer (especially since he was on a family vacation).

    Furthermore, I do not post except using my name.

  72. Stace Nelson

    Mr. Jones,
    Were you not previosly listed as an author on this site? Did you not just post the long winded current post on this blog under the name Troy Jones? In order to do so would you not have administrator access? According to your past posts, your limited laymen abilities in other fields would make you an “expert” under your normal tirades. Now you play dumb and claim ignorance?

    I know it is a blow to you two’s egocentric ideas; however, you two’s bile was not a concern nor did you exist since last Thursday afternoon. As indicated on my facebook account, Tweets, etc., I was off the grid since then.

    Is it so hard for your two’s bloated egos to fathom that many people understand and support the death penalty even after your hateful tirades above?

  73. Troy Jones Post author

    I have guest author privileges to the Dakota War College and do not have full administrator privileges. I have no ability (that I know of) to ascertain the identity of a poster.

    We are not Facebook friends and I don’t follow you on Twitter. Where you are and what you (or any other poster) are doing at any particular time is of no concern to me or what name they use. I’m only interested in ideas.

          1. SN

            Can’t beleive J.R.R. Tolkien did not sacrifice all these heroes lives in the story to capture all the murdering orcs, etc., vice killing them so that they could ensure that they safe guarded the orcs inalienable rights to kill the heroes… 馃榾

              1. Bill Fleming

                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orc_(Middle-earth)

                Excerpt:
                In J. R. R. Tolkien’s fantasy writings, Orcs or Orks are a race of creatures who are used as soldiers and henchmen by both the greater and lesser villains of The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings ? Morgoth, Sauron and Saruman. The Orcs also work independently as the common antagonists in The Hobbit, though in that work they are more often called Goblins.

                Although not entirely dim-witted and occasionally crafty, they are portrayed as miserable beings, hating everyone including themselves and their masters, whom they serve out of fear.

                They make no beautiful things, but rather design cunning devices made to hurt and destroy.

                  1. Bill Fleming

                    p.s. Don’t forget, I am a student of literature. My English prof at YC, Doc Eherensperger, was a close personal friend of JRR Tolkien. I studied his works extensively.

                    1. SN

                      Et tu? Name dropping must be a liberal thing.

                      JRR Tolkien repeatedly condemned the allegory you now claim. Did you & Troy perhaps “convert” him too in the after life?

                    2. BF

                      As with Troy’s assertion, it’s just the facts, Stace.

                      I also used to grade Lyle Alzado’s English papers even though he was a year ahead of me.

                      That’s just how I roll, dude.

                      Like the cowboy says, “if you done it, it ain’t braggin’.”

                    3. Stace Nelson

                      So you claim that JRR Tolkien changed his denial of allegory to you?

                      Am I to be impressed with the Alzado story?

                      I worked protective service details on Sec Defs, Sec Nav, CNO, CMC, etc. 馃榾

              2. SN

                You are one warped individual “BF”

                Understanding of his work in the Hobbit: “More specifically, an excellent example is the unity and ultimate triumph of the traditionally peaceful nations of the world over the evils of fascism and Nazism in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Faced with a loss of identity, ethnic traditions and everything else, the “civilized” world for the most part banded together to fight for what is right, much like Bilbo aligned with others different than he to achieve an ultimate victory for the good. ”

                The Conservative Heroes against the socialist Orks. 馃榾

  74. Troy Jones Post author

    Bill: Here is a list of all the questions (about 20 different questions, some asked more than once so I combined them all of which I believe were answered) in this thread Mr. Nelson has asked

    If I missed any, it was inadvertent. In some cases, I caught questions that didn’t have ? marks so I’m sure I missed a few. Also, in charity, I didn’t copy questions which are really just character attacks. If Mr. Nelson wants to repost those “questions”, you can answer them. Finally, if I thought the question was related to abortion, I didn’t restate it as I oppose abortion. Trying keep this discussion on the death penalty.

    Is it totally lost on you that Mr Johnson was in fact a guard at the prison and that we were unable to protect him? Ron Johnson was a guard in the general prison population and the crime did not occur in a maximum security facility.

    What part of his vicious murder do you not understand? Did you happen to read the details of the crime? None. What Eric Robert did was heinous.

    it isn?t obvious that the murderer Eric Roberts is personally responsible for viciously murdering Ron Johnson, it is Ron Johnson and his fellow corrections officers? fault? (not really worded as a question but I’ll answer it anyway. Maybe it was intended to be rhetorical but I answered anyway.) Eric Robert is fully responsible for this heinous act.

    Is not liberty also an inalienable right? Yes. It may be denied as a remedy to a direct threat to the inalienable right of another.

    What would you have in addition to no death penalty for convicted violent murderers? Life in prison with no possibility of parole.

    No prison incarceration? See above.

    Are we not violating the inalienable rights of real people that we force to take care of the Eric Roberts of our prisons? What about the people that have to take care of monsters like Eric Robert? No, if they are hired as guards and accept the position to guard whoever is incarcerated, they do so freely.

    So do you or don?t you support society?s ?legitimate right to do whatever is necessary to protect society.? Yes, I just don’t think it necessary to kill to accomplish this. I have confidence in our ability to incarcerate even the most dangerous.

    Is it not the height of arrogance to now dispute Robert?s rightful sentence after your statement above? Are we to take it that you know better for our state than this judge? Are we to defer to you in all such future cases for your laymen determinations? How is that not an indictment of these two fine gentlemen?s decisions? It is permitted under the law to sentence one to death. I believe we should not permit it. Is it arrogant to advocate change in law? If the law is changed, I expect the AG and judge would follow the law.

    So are you still advocating that WE the people deprive the murders of their inalienable rights by their incarceration? No see answer above on liberty.

    What part of this confessed convicted criminal?s professed statements that he will kill again did you not undertstand? I understand it fully. I believe our prison procedures are capable to prevent him from doing so if he is placed in a level of incarceration which our death row inmates are currently under.

    (The Founding Fathers) must not have believed in their own comments about inalienable rights, huh? No, as I stated, in the past we didn’t have the prison incarceration capabilities we have today. Now, it is no longer necessary to use the death penalty to protect society. Thus, it should no longer be permitted.

    Ollie North? Really? Was not Ollie a Marine? Is not engaging the enemy with deadly force the death sentence for the enemy? Ollie North is clearly on the record in opposition to the death penalty.

    Please tell me the name of one person Ted Bundy hurt after he was put to death? None. This is the same answer with regard to all the people on death row in America over the last 20 years. Nobody has been hurt by a death row inmate in the past 20 years. But there have been people wrongly executed during this same period.

    keep murderous threats to society and make society deprive lawful citizens of their inalienable rights in order to do so all the while draining much needed tax monies & depriving law abiding citizens further of their inalienable rights? Mr, Nelson, what inalienable right are we advocating be denied to lawful citizens? I guess I don’t understand the question.

    (If one murders) you get an entitlement to be taken care of for life, right Bill? What about undue governement interference in requiring innocent tax payers to take care of and pay for violent murders like Eric Roberts for life? If you consider committing any crime that results in entitlement, I guess the only alternative is to kill all criminals.

    Now we can take away inalienable rights? It is permissable to deny one an inalienable right if they directly threaten the inalienable right of another and we are permitted to do what is NECESSARY to protect others. We can’t cut off the hand of a pickpocket as we have another alternative.

    Am I not the one advocating the will of the people & JUSTICE? Is it stupid that society receive justice for the crime and the criminal receive an appropriate punishment for their crime? Please explain why the death penalty is not an appropriate punishment, and why it ia not justice for society and the victims of his crime. If the will of the people can deny inalienable rights, they cease to be inalienable. And try as you or any of us to pursue Justice, only God is capable of exacting Justice (capital J).

    Elitism? Or simple ignorant arrogance to believe you two know more than someone with actual extensive training, education, and experience on this issue http://www.StaceNelson.com ? I see you have law enforcement experience. I don’t see any expertise on the theory of law and the underpinning of the concepts of philosophy, inalienable rights, Natural Law, etc.

    Here are some questions I don’t believe have been answered:

    What is your definition of inalienable? Is there a right giver? Who is the right giver? What is the process and standard by which society can deny an inalienable right?

    Since Mr Nelson thinks incarcerating people is advocating putting people on welfare, is he advocating we quit punishing convicts with jail, kill or release them?

    What percentage of wrongful executions are acceptable? 1%, 5%, 10% (before the death penalty is unjust because in our perfection we are unable to apply it fairly)?

    What cost of incarceration vs. cost of execution (including pursuing approval to excecute) ratio is acceptable. If cost of incarceration is 50%, is it ok to still execute even if more expensive? 75%, 90%?

    What risks should we expose prison guards to when guarding an Eric Robert?

    Should it be no more risky than being a cop or a general population prison guard? Should it be half as risky? Or should it be 0%? The lower % we pick, we need to understand it will increase the risk of wrongful executions.

    Are you saying if an expert with greater credentials than you would assert Eric Robert can be reasonably prevented from killing again, you will back down on this portion of the discussion?

    Are you saying only a person with law enforcement experience may have a legitimate opinion on the death penalty?

    Are their other experiences and education that would allow a person who has never been in law enforcement to render an opinion?

    I would love to know how you reconcile your advocacy on the ?inalienable rights? of our innocent guards responsible for guarding prisoners in death row/max security conditions against the ?inalienable rights? of those wrongfully convicted (and subsequently executed) when the latter exceeds the former over the last forty years.

    Or does the reality they were wrongfully convicted justification for the loss of their privilege of life? Or are they just collateral damage to a greater cause. I sincerely ask this question and am not looking for sarcasm.

    Two sidenotes:

    Gandolf in the Lord of the Rings, who is essentially a special angelic messenger from God: “Many who live deserve death, and many who die deserve life, can you give it to them? Then be not to quick to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for you own safety, not even the wise see all ends.”

    (I guess Gandalf hadn’t met Stace)

    Tolkien was close friends with G.K Chesterton, CS Lewis, Hilaire Belloc, H.G. Wells. Can you imagine the intellectual conversations these five had in the pub? Makes our discussion pale by a long shot. Chesterton, Tolkein, Belloc and Wells opposed the death penalty. Lewis supported it.

    I see a post by Stace Nelson has been caught by the filter. I see no reason it was caught. But, as I’m not the author of the thread, I can’t release it.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Jones,
      I confess that I have long since given up reading your lengthy self consumed comments, as I have found them to be a gross waste of my time.

      I notice that you do admit though that you and your pal “BF” ignored questions to simply engage in your attack hate post high jack mode.

      Please feel free to reap what you have so aptly sowed.

      So do you know tell people that you are a “Conservative Reagan Republican if President was converted to liberalism posthumously?” or are you still high jacking who he was to salve your massive ego?

      President Reagan was an ardent supporter of capitol punishment his whole life: http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2006/6/28/170302.shtml

      1. Troy Jones Post author

        I admit nothing. In fact, I deny any of your questions were unanswered (except when they were essentially character attacks which are by definition ad hominem, at least calumny and at worst slander). I answered all those questions previously. I just summarized the answers again. I’m still waiting for your answers to my questions.

        I am a Reagan conservative. I never claimed Reagan did or assert he would have changed his mind on the death penalty. Your attempt to try to drive a wedge between me and Reagan will not work. And neither will your attempt to convince SDWC readers I’m not conservative. They have read my comments across a breadth of issues. Disagreeing with him on a couple does not make me a liberal. But, for you, I will speak very slowly again.

        Reagan had put on his tombstone (effectively his last words): ?And there?s purpose and worth to each and every life.? I just conclude he wants us to know this also means Eric Robert has worth. Do you know he didn’t intend that? He didn’t say “to most lives” or have any other qualifier. “Each and every” is used to emphasize it is without qualification. I guess I just respect him enough to assume what he put on his tombstone he meant.

        He also said to have an open mind: ?Here you discover that so long as books are kept open, then minds can never be closed.? My only point is I followed that directive by never closing my mind off to knew thoughts and information. I once supported the death penalty and now have discerned a different position. Do you know he would chastise me for this change?

        P.S. I would prefer you answer the substantive questions I’ve asked and not focus on whether or not I’m “Reagan-esque” enough for you. I don’t think agreement is possible between us on that matter and nor do I think you have the authority to make such a determination.

  75. Stace Nelson

    Mr. Jones,
    The most dangerous people in the world are the arrogant ones who think they deserve something because of perceived self worth of social standings.

    Your lack of civility here, and in your previous asinine protestations over the idea of recorded legislature votes being made public, earned you my current lack of concern for your ideas.

    Your own opposition to this, and the above Conservative cause, indicts your own CLAIMED standing.

    Only in your egocentric arrogance can you claim to be a Reagan Conservative all the while advocating for that which is the opposite.

    I have the authority of a clear eye and a voice respected by actual Conservatives. I also have a voting record that is acknowledged by Conservatives as not just claiming to be Conservative.

    I also have President Reagan on my side. You got “BF” and “IP.”

  76. Troy Jones Post author

    My lack of civility?

    Doing a quick cursory purview of this while my wife wondered why I wouldn’t come to bed:

    I was called directly arrogant (doesn’t include when you lumped me in with Bill) at least 16 times, asinine at least 5 times, referenced my ego at least 11 times (or does that combine with arrogant making it 27 arrogant references), liberal or faux conservative over 11 times, ignorant at least 5 times, hateful, insane, and elitist. However, when you call me long-winded (over 5 times) or some other derivation, I admit you are right.

    And, these aren’t in some ways your most egregious statements against civility.

    My main offenses:

    I think your arguments (when made) are either specious, weak intellectually, nonsensical. There are good arguments for the death penalty. You just failed to make them.

    I think your position your experience is all that is relevant is insulting to every other American who has the right to weigh on the issue if their government can kill in their name.

    I disagree you with regard to the necessity of the death penalty in light of the American principle that every person is endowed with certain inalienable rights from their Creator and the fact we have an alternative to killing by the state. (I understand you don’t think the alternative is sufficient. So we just disagree).

    Sidenote: I do find it hilarious you “dropped” Tolkien’s name considering he was opposed to the death penalty, the liberal accusation quit pretty much when you became aware North et. al. oppose the death penalty, and you actually had the gall to say I am uncivil in a post that you use these words to describe me:

    dangerous, arrogant, perceived self worth of social standings, asinine, egocentric arrogance.

    And, self-annoint yourself as:

    Reagan Conservative, the authority of a clear eye and a voice respected by actual Conservatives, and President Reagan on my side.

  77. Stace Nelson

    Mr. Jones,
    Yet you acknowledge your incivility in part and then what claim de minimus for the rest?

    Who are you to dictate what or how anyone posts? What kind of arrogant idiot imposes rules or confers official debate status on a blog that is not even their own? It is your egocentric arrogance that gives you such idiotic ideas of self importance to do so or just your idiocy?

    Pointing out such may not be customary; however, the offenses causing one to do so are all yours.

    Again your arrogance of claiming something on the behalf of others yet providing no substance to justify your comments. There are plenty indications that JRR Tolkien was not as you would high jack. In a 1945 letter to his son Christopher, Tolkien wrote:
    “We were supposed to have reached a stage of civilization in which it might still be necessary to execute a criminal, but not to gloat, or to hang his wife and child by him while the orc-crowd hooted.” You mistake my respect of NOT high jacking who the man was in your rush to claim some sort of goofy victory that you have yet to prove.

    Must you always whine and play the victim? Was it not you that violated President Reagan’s cardinal rule when you attacked me for DARING to suggest the idea of posting all recorded legislative votes online for the voters to see?

    You are as much a Reagan Republican as Bill or IP. At least they deserve the respect of being who they are, not claiming something that they are not.

    Now run along, I am sure there are some good people you haven’t name dropped in awhile.

    But before you go, read this and realize that President Reagan warned us about people just like you: http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2006/6/28/170302.shtml

    1. BF

      “They turned out the lights. That tells me I can’t talk anymore.”
      Reagan explaining why he can’t answer anymore questions. 6/19/85

  78. Stace Nelson

    Bill & Troy,
    I apologize. I have had several great laughs at your expense and it was rude not to share those salient points throughout this whole bizzare DISCUSSION.

    Your many posts remind me of when I was a young patrolman dealing with drunk drivers, drunk & disorderly, etc. I lost count of how many would spit, spew, and argue from hand cuffs in the back seat on how they just kicked my butt, how they knew important people and were going to get off, how I would be in so much trouble, and how they were going to kick my butt again when I took the handcuffs off. Reality, was always a different judge though.

    You two’s litmus test for success and reality’s are two different things. Your test requires lengthy postings in which you claim success in theory. Reality requires actual tangible evidence.

    The only tangible evidence of the results of this discussion are that you have further convinced at least two sitting legislators that capitol punishment is needed, is morale, is appropriate, and is justice. The opposite results of your claimed success in your diatribes.

    You can still snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. May I suggest having “Caveman” drop a bill with LRC for the ’12 session that repeals South Dakota’s capitol punishment provisions.

    ’12 is shaping up to be a major election year revolt AGAINST liberalism. If this is the “conservative” issue that our enlightened Troy claims it is, I am sure that you three’s eloquent arguments will meet with appropriate success.

    In plain English, put up or shut up. 馃榾

      1. Stace Nelson

        Tsk, tsk, tsk, you are changing the subject again Billy boy.

        Troy claims all his connections and sway within our government, you too. I am sure you two can get a legion of legislators to do your bidding just based off of your comments made here at SDWC.

        Get a legislator to drop the bill so you two can come to Pierre and WoW the public. If you two are right, the bill will pass. If I am right, it will not.

        Put up or shut up.

        1. BF

          I make no claim to being able to persuade members of the South Dakota legislature of anything, and offer my participation in this entire thread, attempting to reason with you, Mr. Nelson as evidence as to why such a thing is practically impossible. I will be pleasantly surprised if even one member of that body has given anything I have had to say here even one minute of serious thought and reflection.

          But if any of them have, I sincerely thank them for their kind attention in the matter.

          1. Stace Nelson

            Bill,
            Capitulation should be done in a more dignified fashion.

            Please ensure that you glance backwards often as you back peddle so quickly. 馃榾

            If fighting capitol punishment was in fact the morally right thing to do, as you & Troy so loudly proclaimed, would not that require you both to pursue such legislative measures to seek its repeal?

            1. Bill Fleming

              Stace, it’s “capitAl” punishment. “CapitOl” is where you go to put on your dog-and-pony show.

              Sorry cowboy, once an editor, always an editor.

              I will gladly assist anyone who wishes to bring the arguments above before the legislature, although there are lobbyists with far more experience than I who are of like mind, and better know the territory. My arena of expertise is the media. In this case, the new “social” media.

            2. Troy Jones Post author

              I am not a statist. I don’t think the government is the first or last determinant of what is good or moral. In all things, I think the best ideas and changes come from the people. Until the death penalty is an issue raised in campaigns and discussed, it is premature to expect a change.

                1. Troy Jones Post author

                  Not sure I understand. I voiced my opinion here. Do I have an obligation to run to show my commitment or can I just be like most Americans and petition their legislators through their words and vote?

  79. Troy Jones Post author

    Huh? My objective is to articulate my opposition to the death penalty with the hope some conservatives would look at the issue with fresh eyes. I have no illusion the death penalty is on the verge of being ended tomorrow in South Dakota. I also have no illusion abortion will be ended tomorrow either. But that doesn’t cause me to not advocate for both. I have a long view toward meaningful change developed over a battle for the hearts and minds one at a time.

    Over the last 20 years, support for the death penalty has waned. Drilling down where the most change is by a factor of 2:1, it is conservatives moving away from the death penalty (granted, they have historically been more supportive so they have more pro-death penalty minds to move). Surprisingly, it is independents who have moved the least. Don’t get that.

    I find it interesting we have found what appears to be conflicting views from Tolkien on this matter. But I shouldn’t be surprised.

    While Tolkien, Belloc, Chesterton, and Lewis are on nearly every list of people to understand if one wants to understand the conservative mind, they were divided on this issue.

    Belloc was an intellectual force in the UK which led to it from being banned. Belloc had a very broad view of what were philosophical matters and to large degree many of my views were probably formed by him.

    Lewis was the opposite holding more matters were questions of prudential judgment.

    Chesterton and Tolkien were more in the middle. Chesterton, while his thoughts very often paralleled Thomas Aquinas, held a non-Thomistic, prudential judgment view of the death penalty supported by his statements only the poor man was hanged and an execution was just a mob act.

    Tolkien was very close to Belloc with regard to philosophical and theological matters but often agreed with Lewis on specific prudential matters. The fact we seem to have found what appear to be conflicting quotes from Tolkien on the death penalty gives an indication he might never have reconciled whether this was a matter of philosophy/theology where he’d likely come down with Belloc or a prudential judgment matter where he would have likely agreed with Lewis. Next time I read Tolkien, I will be looking for greater insight to what his deeper view on the matter might be.

    In the end, it is not always the position they reach that is necessarily the determinant of conservative as much as the thought process. If Belloc, Burke, Chesterton, North, et. al. all oppose the death penalty, to call people who agree with them “liberal” seems a bit contradictory unless you also think these great conservative thinkers are also liberal. I’m not sure I’d want to call these people liberals and expect to be taken seriously.

    Opposition of the death penalty grounded in these principles is not inherently non-conservative.

    1) Distrust of Government. The great conservative thinker Edmund Burke articulated that no government can be entrusted with excessive power. He also referred to the death penalty as “butchery we call justice.”

    2) Skepticism of government’s competence. This is the view encompassed by Ollie North when he said its days are numbered because we can’t/don’t do it fairly.

    3) Fiscal Restraint. It is a generally recognized fact it costs more to go through the execution process in total than to just have them spend life in prison.

    4) Humility with regard to what power man has over what is the perogative of Nature or Nature’s God. This is the essence of Belloc’s argument and the one I argued most often and vehemently.

    Mr. Nelson, you might not hold the thought process of the aforementioned conservative thinkers. And you definitely don’t hold their views on this particular matter. But, unless you are the final judge on all things conservative, you don’t own what is conservative thought. If Belloc & Lewis, Reagan & North can disagree on this matter and still remain good conservatives, so can alot of conservatives of good will.

    P.S. I’m disappointed you got to make the 300th comment on this record breaking thread. 馃檪

  80. Stace Nelson

    Troy,
    I always loved it when a criminal would talk so much in protesting their innocence that they talked themselves into a confession. I had this one guy adamantly state that “Mr. Nelson, I was never at “such and such location at such and such time “so I could not have” done the crime! Only problem was, I never told him the time or location of the crime.

    So, my fine paper tigers, correct me if I am wrong here:

    You enlightened “conservatives” claim the death penalty is morally wrong, yada, yada, ad nauseam; that Troy is actually a behind closed doors trusted unofficial advisor to the governor, et al, with massive Conservative connections and sway in our state government; however, you two are NOT going to actually fight what you claim is a terrible offense to God & man by seeking its repeal after going on and on about it till people were ready to shove a pen in their eye? Even with “Caveman” stepping up to the plate on the issue?

    Bwahahahahahaha! 馃榾

    1. Stace Nelson

      The difference between men of bloated egos and men of principle? Men of principle back up their words with action, bloated egos simply type more BS bluster.

      1. Troy Jones Post author

        Since you seem to want to go here, let me return the favor.

        I assume you think so much of yourself you think you are a “man of principle.” Delusions of grandeur, me thinks.

        Your belief every disagreement is a personal attack: Delusions of persecution, me thinks.

        Your willingness to make personal character attacks: Can’t play nice with others.

        I really ought to tell you, you have just become a little ball of yarn I’m enjoying knocking around the house. I probably should wonder why I’ve found enjoyment in it. But, without a doubt, you have lived up to your reputation.

        1. Stace Nelson

          Yes, Troy, you have won the “debate” by throwing a hissy fit and tipping the game board over, again. 馃榾

          For all your bravado, bluster, & claims of superiority, you don’t even have the courage to back your comments up with action.

          Just more of the same whining, mewling, and egocentric sputtering that I have come to expect from you.

          Yes, Troy, a little ball of yarn that you play with in your own little delusional world where you & bill are king & squire. 馃榾

          In the real world though, just a poof of hot air that dissipates with a loud hissing noise as soon as it is called upon to put up or shut up. 馃榾

        2. Stace Nelson

          ohhhhh, now, now Troy… don’t be a sore loser, maybe we can get together and take introductory law enforcement, criminal justice, criminal investigations, and corrections courses together so we can show you are an expert in those areas. 馃榾

    2. Troy Jones Post author

      Huh?

      I have never asserted any influence or that I have official/unofficial advisory roles with any elected person. I do admit to consider a few really good friends, several solid friends, and more who I have met and have respect. When I agree with these people I celebrate it. When we disagree, we just agree to disagree. I don’t expect my friends to agree with me. I just expect them to be my friend.

      I am just a citizen with no existing aspirations for office who believes politics is important, votes, and willing to exercise my free speech rights.

      1. Stace Nelson

        ..its okay Troy, no need to explain your lack of action on this issue after your repeated posts indicating the death penalty was such an afront to America, God, etc..

        I think no less of you as you tuck your tail from actually backing up your positionn with action and run for the keyboard… 馃榾

  81. anon

    Wow… I think I missed two lunch hours reading this, but I wanted to thank you, Troy, for opening my eyes on this issue. I have always been in favor of the death penalty, but you have at least got me thinking about changing my view.

    You, by the way, have endured something worse than the death penalty the last few days on this blog.

    Mr. Nelson refers to you as egotisitcal, but from reading his rants, I doubt that he has ever admitted being wrong…. To me, that’s the classic definition of an egomaniac.

    How do you spell whack job?

  82. President Ronald Reagan

    “There you go again!”

    “A tendency to downplay the permanent moral values has helped make crime the enormous problem that it is today ? [And] it has occurred to me that the root causes of our other major domestic problem, the growth of government and the decay of the economy, can be traced to many of the same sources of the crime problem. This is because the same utopian presumptions about human nature that hinder the swift administration of justice have also helped fuel the expansion of government.

    Many of the social thinkers of the 1950s and ’60s who discussed crime only in the context of disadvantaged childhoods and poverty-stricken neighborhoods were the same people who thought that massive government spending could wipe away our social ills. The underlying premise in both cases was a belief that there was nothing permanent or absolute about any man’s nature, that he was a product of his material environment, and that by changing that environment ? with government as the chief vehicle of change through educational, health, housing, and other programs ? we could permanently change man and usher in a great new era.

    Well, we’ve learned the price of too much government: runaway inflation, soaring unemployment, impossible interest rates. We’ve learned that Federal subsidies and government bureaucrats not only fail to solve social problems but frequently make them worse.

    It’s time … that we acknowledge the solution to the crime problem will not be found in the social worker’s files, the psychiatrist’s notes, or the bureaucrats budgets. It’s a problem of the human heart, and it’s there we must look for the answer. We can begin by acknowledging some of those permanent things, those absolute truths I mentioned before.”

  83. President Ronald Reagan

    Part 1 on the question of the death penalty:

    “Well, I had an answer to that on my desk for several years while I was governor. It was a list of the names of 12 criminals, 12 murderers, who had all been sentenced to prison, who had all served their terms or been paroled, and released. And at the time the list was on my desk, their total number of victims then was 34, not 12. I think capital punishment in the beginning might have reduced that figure considerably.

    But in the end, the war on crime will only be won when an attitude of mind and a change of heart takes place in America, when certain truths take hold again and plant their roots deep in our national consciousness, truths like: Right and wrong matters; Individuals are responsible for their actions; Retribution should be swift and sure for those who prey on the innocent.

    We must understand that basic moral principles lie at the heart of our criminal justice system, that our system of law acts as the collective moral voice of society. There’s nothing wrong with these values, nor should we be hesitant or feel guilty about [punishing] those who violate the elementary rules of civilized existence. Theft is not a form of political or cultural expression; it is theft, and it is wrong. Murder is not forbidden as a matter of subjective opinion; it is objectively evil, and we must prohibit it. And no one but the thief and murderer benefits when we think and act otherwise.”

  84. Bill Fleming

    The fact of the matter is, Ronald Reagan only executed one prisoner.

    One.
    http://www.executedtoday.com/2011/04/12/1967-aaron-mitchell-ronald-reagan/

    “The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.” ? Martin Luther King

    Here is a snapshot of the “collective moral voice of society” over the past few decades.

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/1606/death-penalty.aspx

    Meanwhile, at long last, Stace Nelson has still not answered the following questions posed by Troy Jones:

    1. If Troy provided you with a reputable study or source (one with greater experience than you have) demonstrating that the risk of harm from Eric Robert is less than that which regular prison guards, police officers, and a host of other people are exposed to every day, will you reconsider your position?

    Yes, or No?

    2. If Troy can prove it is more likely we will execute an innocent person than it is that a prison guard will be harmed [or killed] by a maximum security prisoner, will you reconsider your position?

    Yes, or No?

    If Mr. Nelson was really interested in advancing this conversation he would answer the questions posed to him and refrain from berating the person who asked them.

    1. Stace Nelson

      Mr. Fleming,
      You & Mr Jones have admitted to being paper tigers. You bluster, spew, and condemn all the while you have not the metal to take your argument to the actual forum for public policy, the SD Legislature. Even though Mr. Jones and yourself claim influence and affiliations to do so. You even had a sitting legislator “Caveman” weigh in on the debate, and Mr. Jones had people (or himself) posting that he is such an expert that the governor unofficially consults Mr Jones on issues and considers him an expert.

      I could spend a life time answering every asinine comment or question you to toothless tigers decide to spew to distract from the issue. I have sparred enough with you both on this issue to know that I can handle the issue if you should find the courage to back your bluster with actual action on the issue.

      Either put up by having a legislator, the governor, the AG, etc, bring a bill to repeal capital punishment in SD, or shut up.

      There comes a time when even the most patient get tired of both your yammering, mewling, and backbiting. I have never been wrongfully accused of being the most patient.

      Got it? Bring a bill and your two mewling liberal butts to Pierre this session. You both have been called on your liberal whining. Put up or shut up.

  85. President Ronald Reagan

    ?A leader, once convinced a particular course of action is the right one, must have the determination to stick with it and be undaunted when the going gets tough.?

    1. Troy Jones

      I agree. And one would be very wise to not question my choice of obligations, commitments and priorities or suggest their choice of obligations, commitments make them superior. They would also be wise to not suggest my choice should be different. Some sleeping dogs are better left asleep.

      P.S. I only post using my name. Do not infer that again.

      1. President Ronald Reagan

        “There you go again!”

        “We must understand that basic moral principles lie at the heart of our criminal justice system, that our system of law acts as the collective moral voice of society. There?s nothing wrong with these values, nor should we be hesitant or feel guilty about [punishing] those who violate the elementary rules of civilized existence. Theft is not a form of political or cultural expression; it is theft, and it is wrong. Murder is not forbidden as a matter of subjective opinion; it is objectively evil, and we must prohibit it. And no one but the thief and murderer benefits when we think and act otherwise.?

        1. Merriam-Webster Dictionary

          pro路hib路it:
          Definition of PROHIBIT
          transitive verb
          2a : to prevent from doing something

          See prohibit defined for kids:
          2. To make IMPOSSIBLE (emphasis added)

            1. Merriam-Webster Dictionary

              ig路no路ra路mus
              Definition of IGNORAMUS
              : an utterly ignorant person : dunce

              Examples of IGNORAMUS
              Bill Fleming

                1. Capt Obvious

                  …as in one who protests loudly that the death penalty is wrong and then indicates that they are taking no actual action to have the legislature or governor change the law?

    1. Los Angeles Times

      “Reagan Signs Broad ‘Sword and Shield’ Anti-Drug Law : Casual Users Face Stiff Fines; Kingpins Could Get the Death Penalty
      November 19, 1988|LEE MAY | Times Staff Writer

      WASHINGTON ? President Reagan on Friday signed landmark anti-drug legislation, calling it a “new sword and shield” in the nation’s battle against the illegal drug epidemic.

      The law represents a significant shift in the government’s approach to fighting drugs, establishing a federal DEATH PENALTYU for drug kingpins, toughening laws against child pornography and providing for fines of up to $10,000 against people possessing small amounts of drugs.”(Emphasis added)

      (President Reagan was 77 when he signed the law and was a staunch supporter of the death penalty his whole life)

        1. Capt Obvious

          Some ignoramous commented “There is no reason for one to assume one knows how Reagan would have decided a third time..”

          His signing a law expanding the death penalty at the age of 77, after signing the death sentence of a murder 21 years earlier, as well as his life long stance on the issue, takes assumption out of the liberal equation.

    2. Capt Obvious

      … if the comments are actually President Reagan’s actual words, and they are attributed to President Reagan, would it still not be his words?

      I am just saying…

  86. Troy Jones

    Who is this Captain Obvious. I assume not Stace since he was so iindignant Bill used his full name and initials.

    I dare the coward to repeat the statement to my face with their real name with regards to the comment regarding my not doing more on this issue.

    1. Bill Fleming

      Yes Troy. I was wondering if all these new posters here might be Stace. But like you, I’m thinking that would be practically unfathomable considering his assertions about his integrity above.

      He wouldn’t really do such a thing, would he?

      That would be sock-puppet trolling.

      An Orc-ish kind of blog behavior, I’m told.

      I suppose we could ask the admins here and find out.

      You know some of them, don’t you?

      1. Capt Obvious

        You mean like when you post just as BF?

        Who died and put you two internet tough guys in charge?

        Funny, you only scream when anonymous posts don’t go your way.. I’m just sayin..

    2. Capt Obvious

      Gonna beat someone up for such a small transgression, but let someone off on murdering poor Ron Johnson? Not very enlightened.

      Just saying..

  87. Bill Fleming

    http://www.guineafowl.com/board/troll.html

    Excerpt: The “sock puppet” troll often enters a forum using several different identities. As postings from one identity attract increasingly critical comment from other forum members, the troll enters the forum using a second identity in support of the first. The troll may even use postings from the second identity to criticise those from the first in order to develop credibility on the forum.

  88. Capt Obvious

    Sock puppet tough guys: scream about how terrible the death penalty is and then silent on actually doing something.

    So, BF & TJ.. You going to bring your mighty influence & superior enlightened abilities together to fight the death penalty or you two juat a lot of hot air?

    1. Troy Jones

      Captain,

      Blogs by there nature are for average citizens to express themselves with regard to issues. I have my view, Bill has his, duh has his, etc. We exchange our ideas. The floor of the Legislature is restricted to 105 men and women. This is where the average person gets to debate. And if Stace Nelson is representative of the IQ, knowledge, and demeanor of legislators, this is certainly an upgrade. Fortunately, I know even Stace can’t bring the IQ down by himself, as much as he tries.

      1. Stace Nelson

        … and yet the big ugly low IQ’d country boy made you & Bill show that you two were nothing more than the hot air that you are. For all of your bluster, neither of you are backing up all the hot air you expended. You are running from the challenge to an actual debate on this issue like rats fleeing a sinking ship! 馃榾

        So many of us have had to put up with both your claims of having so much influence, Troy’s incessant name dropping, and now his claims that this is a Conservative issue. After all that bluster, now you both are simple men with no influence? 馃榾

        This is a blog, it is for folks to comment as they desire, it is not a debate. I have accepted you two’s challenges to a real debate and now you run?

        Troy, you claimed previously in the past to be an expert on legislation! You heralded your long time friendship with Jim Fry! With ALL of your “Conservative” connections and Bill’s liberal ones, are you two admitting that you are nothing more than the hot air that you were accredited as being?

        Troy in your expertise with the legislature that you said was so much more than mine, have you forgotten that you and Bill would able to sit side by side testifying to legislative committees as to your expertise on this very subject and for the repeal of the death penalty in SD?

        …and Troy, threatening an anonymous poster after all your enlightened talk about over looking the vicious murder of Ron Johnson and taking care of Eric Robert for life? Really? Bill didn’t you threaten to beat someone up awhile back who dared question you on your position in favor of abortions? But society should be enlightened and warehouse these murders in comfort for their life time.

        Put up or shut up “Sock puppet tough guys.”

          1. Bill Fleming

            I will want to hear you explain why the God-given right to life is not inalienable, but rather subject to human emotions and economic and logistic considerations.

            I will want to hear you explain why maximum security prisons in South Dakota cannot be made safe enough to protect society, prison guards and other prisoners from violent criminals.

            I will want to hear you explain how it is alright to sacrifice an unknown number of innocent prisoners’ lives in order to make sure law enforcement people and their families can feel safe from any possible harm.

            I will want to hear you explain how you are so sure that the rest of your fellow South Dakotans are as eager to put criminals to death as you are.

            And finally, I will want to hear you explain to other conservatives who feel as Troy Jones does about this issue how they are really just just a bunch of liberals

  89. Stace Nelson

    Just a loud “hisssssing” noise as the hot air gets let out of the two balloons.

    Just a couple “puppet sock tough guys,” all bluster and no substance.

    Put up or tell it walking.

      1. Stace Nelson

        Attaboy Sock Puppet, if you can’t toe the mark… ask more questions to hide behind.

        105 legislators, the AG, the governor, etc., that you can get to bring a bill to repeal the death penalty which would give you the opportunity to testify on the record in front of legislative committees. There is also a process that an individual can do so via LRC.

        According to your so called debate winning statistics, that should give you over 50 legislators that would be willing to bring the legislation, vote for it, and near enough to pass the repeal.. according to you. Yet nary a one that you & Troy trot out to bring your winning debate to actually change the policy that you rail against?

        Even when a buddy of a buddy of Troy’s nibbled at the issue?

        1. Bill Fleming

          Yes, I forgot to list some of your other brilliant arguments. Thanks for the reminder, Stace.

          My favorite first:

          1. We can’t change the law of the land, because it’s the law of the land.

          2. We can’t change the law because then the Orcs will overrun Mordor.

          3. We can’t change the law because something Ronald Reagan said during a political campaign carries more moral weight than the words he had engraved on his tombstone.

          I’m interested to know why you won’t address these questions here, Stace. Seriously.

          This is, after all, the place where the conversation is happening.

          Is it perhaps because you feel a one-on-one discussion with your fellow South Dakotans is beneath you?

          If so, then why ARE you posting here?

          1. Stace Nelson

            “Socket Puppet Tough Guy” Bill,

            So much noise to distract from no actual action on your part. Almost sad to see ya flopping about. Your comments ring hollow in the shadow of this lengthy postings.

            Actions speak louder than words, in that area, you run from your own postings.

            Look at the little man behind the curtain, all he has is smoke and loud noise..

  90. Capt Obvious

    It’s “Sock Puppet Tough Guy.”

    Did you guys know you can actually contact all SD legislators via their listed telephone numbers, addresses, & emails: http://legis.state.sd.us/sessions/2011s/MemberMenu.aspx

    If a person really won the argument and wanted to change SD law, seems pretty easy to find someone to bring a bill to do so and then go to the capitol to testify in favor of repealing the death sentence.

    Just sayin..

      1. Capt Obvious

        You are aware that the death penalty is still in effect?

        If your argument was really overwhelming as you claim, would you not have some tangible scrap of evidence that you “won” the “debate” as you claim?

        Is victory really you asking more questions?

        Wouldn’t real victory entail someone within our state government actually taking up your cause to repeal the death penalty? Especially since you & Mr. Jones claim that you were so overwhelmingly convincing?

        I’m just sayin..

  91. Bill Fleming

    1. Are you aware that the God-given right to life is inalienable, and not subject to human emotions and/or economic, logistic and/or legal considerations because inalienable is an absolute?

    2. Are you aware that maximum security prisons in South Dakota can and should be made safe enough to protect society, prison guards and other prisoners from violent criminals?

    3. Are you aware that it is both immoral and irrational to sacrifice an unknown number of innocent prisoners? lives in order to make sure law enforcement people and their families can feel safe from any possible harm?

    4. Are you that the rest of your fellow South Dakotans are not all as eager to put criminals to death as you are?

    5. Are you aware that other conservatives feel as Troy Jones does about this issue and that doesn’t make them “liberals?”

    6. Are you aware that the function of the legislature, and the people who serve as legislators is to listen to their constituents, give consideration to their points of view, and change the laws as necessary?

    7. Are you aware that the Orcs were a non-human, fictional invention of JRR Tolkien… a literary device constructed so that Tolkien could, in good conscience wipe them out by the thousands in battle in good conscience without having to kill real human beings?

    8. Are you aware that the epitaph on the wall surrounding Ronald Reagan’s grave reads, “”I know in my heart that man is good. That what is right will always eventually triumph. And there’s purpose and worth to each and every life.”?

    Like I said, as far as the debate on this blog goes:
    Our side: 8
    Your side: 0
    Game over.

  92. Capt Obvious

    …are you aware that you are simply restating “points” you claim to have successfully made repeatedly but still have not provided any tangible evidence that you have won anyone over with? To include yourselves?

    For if you had even convinced yourselves, would you not be actually attempting to address this issue to the state legislature?

    Sock puppet internet tough guys: “winning.”

    Just sayin..

  93. Capt Obvious

    Not everybody can be famous like BF. Must be the tiger blood?

    You’re still winning, except the law appears more secure now than before your many long winded rants.

    Just sayin..