Georgia Republican’s bill would do away with driver’s licenses

By Daniel Tencer
Monday, January 31, 2011 20:21 EDT
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A Republican in Georgia’s House of Representatives has introduced a bill to eliminate driver’s licenses, arguing that the documents are an unnecessary infringement on personal freedom.

Rep. Bobby Franklin, who represents the Atlanta suburb of Marietta, defended the bill to skeptical reporters on Monday, who questioned whether it would be a good idea to eliminate oversight of Georgia’s drivers.

“One of your inalienable rights is the right to travel, the right to move about without needing your papers,” Franklin told WSB in Atlanta. “You shouldn’t have to have permission from the state to exercise a right that has been inalienably given to you from your creator.”

Franklin took tough questions on the bill from a CBS Atlanta reporter who questioned what it would mean if children were allowed to drive cars.

CBS Atlanta’s Rebekka Schramm asked Franklin, “How are we going to keep up with who’s who and who’s on the roads and who’s not supposed to be on the roads?”

“That’s a great question,” Franklin said. “And I would have to answer that with a question, ‘Why do you need to know who’s who?’”

“What about 12-14-year-olds who want to drive? What would stop them?” Schramm asked.

“Well, what’s stopping them now anyway?” Franklin answered.

“Let us answer Franklin’s question right away: Millions of parents are stopping them, in the name of a law that’s unlikely to change anytime soon,” Jim Galloway wrote at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Another roadblock: The constant fatalities … that remind us that driving is serious business.”

Franklin has been in the Georgia House of Representatives since 1996, and his Facebook profile describes him as “the most conservative member of the Georgia General Assembly.”

“Representative Franklin has been called ‘the conscience of the Republican Caucus”‘ because he believes that civil government should return to its biblically and constitutionally defined role,” his House website states.

Franklin’s legislative agenda appears to mirror many of the causes taken up by the tea party movement, including the movement’s concerns about the Federal Reserve and fiat money. Last month, Franklin introduced a bill that would require all transactions with the state of Georgia to be paid in silver or gold.

The proposed law, intended as an effort to move the US towards a gold standard for its currency, would have “catastrophic consequences” for Georgia, Ian Millhiser wrote at ThinkProgress.

Among other things, the U.S. Mint simply does not make very many gold and silver coins — the Mint has even suspended sales of precious medal coins when demand rises above very low levels — so it is unlikely that enough coins even exist to allow Georgia taxpayers to pay more than a fraction of their tax obligations if they are required to do so in U.S. minted gold or silver….

Gold or silver standards leave a nation completely powerless to control its own monetary policy, often tying inflation rates to completely arbitrary factors such as the rate that gold is mined in South Africa, rather than to the interests of a national economy. Worse, it leaves a nation without one of its most important tools to push back against economic downturns. In the 1930s, the United States was one of the last major nations to abandon the gold standard, and this failure to act was one of the principle causes of the Great Depression.

According to CBS Atlanta, Franklin co-sponsored all of the first 21 bills introduced in the new House session. Among the bills are one that would criminalize abortion in the state under all circumstances, and another that would prohibit mandatory vaccinations. Yet another bill proposes abolishing the state income tax.

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  • Anonymous

    I think it is you who are missing the point. You are seeing everything as an either/or situation. If you are so sure that private licensing firms and investigators could do it better than the federal government why aren’t private companies out investigating all the fraud in these industries right now. Surely no one is stopping them. Governmental agencies basically work under the current paradigm instituted by Republican presidents since Reagan who instituted the current conservative policy of bringing in lobbyists from businesses regulated by the government agencies to oversee the agencies and Republican led congresses started cutting budgets to further hamstring enforcement of the rules and regulations pertaining to those agencies. But none of these governmental machinations should have anything to do with the private market being in the business of uncovering deception, deceit, an fraud right now. Why isn’t the private sector already doing this work. Why not show up the government by uncovering the fraud and abuse before it happens to prove ot the American people that the private sector can do the job better itself. Why not both/and today? Is there anything preventing this? If so what?

    What is stopping other agencies from doing this right now. You claim that the government has a monopoly–they have a monopoly on legal enforcement–not on information distribution. Any private agency could begin testing drugs for efficacy etc. and charging the companies for that service couldn’t they and publishing reports for doing so (possibly even charging consumers for the reports couldn’t they?

    Why is it either the govenrment does this or private companies do it–why can’t it be both now?

    Why can’t insurance companies today keep track of the driving records of drivers who are educated at specific driver’s training schools and offering discounts for those who train at the schools whose graduates have the best driving records? Why aren’t they doing that today? If your idea had any validity it seems to me that the private sector would already be doing these things. But the fact is that the private sector doesn’t do any of this now and I have not seen any indication that they are going to start. Instead what we would have under your supposed scheme is no government agencies and no private agencies doing this.

  • Anonymous

    It doesn’t. It simply allows the State to prosecute those who drive without a license.

    It is the same with any law. No law PREVENTS someone from doing something; however, the fact that you can get in trouble for doing what the law prohibits prevents most people from doing it. This is called a deterrent effect. For example, theft laws in and of themselves don’t prevent theft, but the repurcussions of violating those laws prevent most people from stealing things.

    Of course, many people would not steal even if there were no such laws (I hope), and some people still do despite those laws. However, it is important to have such laws to inform people as to what behavior society permits, and what behavior it condemns.

  • Guest

    The answer to all of your “why don’t they do that now” questions is… in many cases they do! But we would have more of them and better quality if we didn’t have the government ruining the marketplace for the service. The government sets the “standards” and so most people think this is all they can get and many private companies are forced to comply with the government standards – so it’s not so worth it to get into the market. Many people mistakenly think the government has the authority and does it better, that’s what they want us to think- but they don’t do it better.

    Lets take the TSA as an even better example. They DO have a monopoly there. They don’t allow competition. But did you know that in Iraq they use bomb sniffing dogs to find explosives and not machines? Do you know they tried the machines but found the bomb sniffing dogs did a better job? So… why aren’t we using bomb sniffing dogs? The answer is corruption. It’s no secret the people pushing the machines are associated with the company.

    Wether or not we’re going to agree here (and I doubt we will) is not important. The only reason I commented at all was because you “couldn’t believe” that there are people that think this way. At least now you see the argument and things aren’t so black and white for you- at least they shouldn’t be. There is an argument for getting rid of government monopolies and / or control over certain/many /if not all markets. You may not agree with the arguments, but to frame the people as “unbelievable” or even “stupid or crazy” really isn’t acceptable once you take the time to understand the argument.

  • Anonymous

    Then I take it everyone here is perfectly willing to accept that there should be no limits or guidelines for society whatsoever? What a true revelation. You see, my understanding of the origin of the “nanny state” was exactly that sociological wilderness. When there are no rules, no laws, no order whatsoever, the percentage of those who act against society tend to increase consistently over time.

    Plus, when you start with the small laws you will eventually get to the big ones. For instance, if individuals aren’t being held to particular rules, what happens when the oil barons decide that their companies are also free from the demands of law? Suddenly “our” liberty to travel for work or pleasure is restricted by “their” liberty to make disgusting amounts of money. And that’s only one example. Or do you have a justification for those types of incidences as well?

  • Anonymous

    The “nanny state” as you so cutely call it, is mostly about dealing with situations where all that parental support and public outcry just… doesn’t exist. The area where I work all day every day, you would be hard pressed to notice someone walking naked; in fact, the hookers would find their job a whole lot easier if it was legal and a lot of the parents would save money on the two-day-old diapers their 4 and 5 year old kids wear in lieu of any other clothing.

    The legality would make it right, it would just make some things way too much easier–like selling teenage kids. Speaking of which, what’s your take on THAT? If it’s all about “personal freedom” and “parental teachings”, what about child molesters and rapists? Are those laws also throw-aways since having them in place is a violation of the personal freedom of the offender? I mean, hey, you can’t pick and choose your personal freedoms as handed down by the hand of the almighty, right?

    Is it dog fighting going to be legalized? After all, that’s a personal freedom that doesn’t affect a human. What about zoophilia? What laws EXACTLY should exist, or should there be any at all?

    Oh, and I have plenty of faith in myself. Others…. um, no. I’ve been severely beaten [by my stepfather], mentally abused [by my mother], raped [by an ex], stalked [by an ex], and sexually harassed [by a coworker]. Yeah… I have a lot of faith in others.

  • DriveBy

    You seem to be fooled my the name much as “The Brave” were fooled by something called The PATRIOT Act… “Common sense” is much less common than the name would suggest.

  • Anonymous

    Just is case you haven’t noticed, the big oil barons and their illegal profits are already above the law. Your Socialist “Nanny State” government works for them and other Banking monopolies on Wall Street. The myriad of illegitimate laws and regulations that have sprung from the almighty State have already driven over 43,000 corporations overseas where this situation does not exist. Over 47,000,000 Americans are dependent upon food stamps. Housing prices are dropping like a rock and 11% of all homes are somewhere in the foreclosure process. The Nation is somewhere between 14 and 56 Trillion dollars in debt. All ten planks of the Communist Manifesto have been adopted. The only thing left is falling living standards and eventually repression and even death. So just how are all those Rules working out for you???

  • Anonymous

    I feel compelled at this point to mention several things NOT taught in government schools. Thomas Jefferson wrote quite eloquently on the difference between legitimate and illegitimate law. Illegitimate law is nothing more than a Tyrant’s will. Thousands of Executive Orders in direct violation of the Constitution of the United States are written by Renegade AdminisTRAITORS of our once great Nation. Legitimate law addresses damage to or intent to damage another person. There is also no instruction in government schools as to the difference between “God Given Unalienable Rights” and “Godless Almighty State” granted privileges. Unalienable Rights do not need permission from the State, but are self evident. The right to self preservation and the defense of that property is one example. In a truly free society, private property exists. We no longer have this concept as we are forced to rent our property from the “Almighty State”. This property tax also fulfills the very first plank of the Communist Manifesto. The second plank is the “Graduated and Progressive Income Tax” which was declared UnConstitutional by the United States Supreme Court in 1894. The Constitution is less than 30 pages while the IRS Tax Code, (a very real form of slavery), has over 70,000 pages. That is the difference between a truly free person living in a Constitutional Republic and a slave on the Socialist Plantation. Of course, government schools do not teach the difference between a Republic and A Democracy. As a matter of fact, they misinform and indoctrinate young future Socialists into the lie that a Democracy is preferable. And finally, the most damaging plank of the “Godless” Communist Manifesto is the privately owned, usurious, counterfeiting, plundering, lying, secretive, and UnConstitutional Federal Reserve System which has just indebted the American people to the tune of 3 Trillion Dollars to bail out the Central Banks of Europe. Ayn Rand was absolutely correct when she stated that in a Socialist Society such as we currently possess, laws are passed in such a quantity that you cannot live without breaking one. Then the almighty State can choose who to arrest. Repealing laws should be top priority, not passing a plethora of new ones.

  • Anonymous

    Benjamin Franklin noted that if we continue to sacrifice freedom for security we will end up with neither. We are there.

  • Anonymous

    It definitely would not be Bobby Franklin snorting the CIA, and U.S. military guarded and transported Cocaine. However, the same could not be said of William Jefferson Blythe Rockefeller Clinton.

  • Anonymous

    Great Post!

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think I ever called people “unbelievable” I called the fact that people believed this libertarian garbage “unbelievable”–which is something entirely different. I think believing in this free market place crap is stupid. A lot of smart people believe very stupid theories. For instance all the people who want to believe in a god or the god or some version of the same basic theory for example! God doesn’t gain objective existence just because people believe he exists and a stupid theory doesn’t become more acceptable or valid just because a “smart person” falls for it in all it’s vapidity.

    There is so much wrong with this response I don’t know where to start to unravel all the contradictions within your own post. In the first place you claim if I am reading you correctly that private companies can do things better than the government. But then you claim that “It’s no secret the people pushing the machines are associated with the company,” meaning a private company which is a one of the same private companies that you claim are going to be superior to the government if given the right to compete with the government. That is what is so remarkably stupid, yes its stupid, about the libertarian claim. They consistently say that government corruption is the problem. Who is responsible for the corruption of the government system? The private companies who pay bribes and engage in various other practices to ensure that they get their way in the face of regulation. And these activities are generally conducted in the face of all kinds of watchdog groups and other government regulators.

    You write “The government sets the “standards” and…many private companies are forced to comply with the government standards.” This is just inconsistent poppycock. According to your own admittance, the government isn’t really setting the standards, the companies who have corrupted the government system have set those standards as your own example of the TSA scanners shows. What the government sets at the behest of industry are “minimum standards,” there is absolutely nothing in any government regulations I have ever read which says “these minimum standards shall not be exceeded.” The government requires seat belts, but that doesn’t mean that individual car companies can’t install seat belts and air bags if they want. Really they use bomb-sniffing dogs in Iraq…hmmm…and look at all the people both civilian and military personnel who who have been killed in Iraq by bombs…maybe you better find an example with a little better success ratio. Let me ask you this, would you rather walk through a machine or have a dog stick his nose in your crotch? Which do you think would be more intrusive? And given the success rate in Iraq and the number of people who died just in the last three weeks from roadside bombs are you willing to claim that dogs are more accurate than an xray?

    Yet, in spite of all that and in spite of your repeated claim that getting the government out off the marketplace they are “ruining” will make things better because the companies themselves will then watch the companies who you claim they are already watching but will somehow, I guess by magic do it better once the government stops “ruining the marketplace.” But even with all this we still have all these problems: see the current financial crisis for how companies watching companies just resulted in ever greater levels of corruption all around, as one company’s corruption meant that to compete the other companies had to engage in the same corrupt practices. so it was the marketplace itself that was the driving force of corrupt practices that nearly brought down the American financial industry and there was almost no major financial institutions that were not involved, and they were all competing against each other in the marketplace of corrupt practices, each trying to be more corrupt and exploit the marketplace more than their marketplace competitors. And there was no government agencies at all doing anything during more of those years because the regulators were snorting coke and watching internet porn all day!

    In fact nothing demonstrates the bankruptcy and “unbelieveable stupidity” of your position more than the current financial crisis and the housing bubble that produced it. Nothing.

    After looking at that situation, even the die-hard Ayn Rander, Alan Greenspan, Mr. Free- Market Capitalism writ large had to admit he was wrong!

    Why can’t you?

  • Guest

    At this point I think you are being willfully ignorant. This will be my last response.

    “Who is responsible for the corruption of the government system?” – The government is. You don’t get that kind of corruption with the free market. You only see it with the government. The government takes control of the market and then doles out the benefits to the corporations that pay them off. That can’t happen in the free market because there is no government to pay off. If you can’t see that logic you’re the one who is stupid here. You admit the corruption is there, you know the government is a part of it, yet you ignore they are the main factor for it and call me dumb! That’s willful ignorance on your part.

    I don’t think companies are saints, but I know that when they are allowed to collude with the government you get corruption. End of story.

    Companies corrupt the government… oh poor government. They are the victims here. They are not responsible for anything they do. I mean.. how can we expect them not to take the bribe money? My god that is insane. And yes, you can’t expect them not to take the bribe money- that’s why you don’t give the government power! unreal that you leave the government blameless when they are fully to blame-more so than the companies that try to corrupt them. If a man hits on the married woman, I guess according to your logic she has no choice but to sleep with the person hitting on her. It was the man’s fault for “corrupting her”. PLEASE GET A LIFE!

    Regarding bomb sniffing dogs. Wow- you’re just brilliant aren’t you? The bombs that kill people are out on the roads. There are no bomb sniffing dogs in front of the trucks driving around. But don’t take my word for it- watch this video: http://breakthematrix.com/politics/government/what-about-bomb-sniffing-dogs-video/

    I don’t agree with everything the video’s creator says but there is plenty of footage direct from main stream media reports that confirm my claims. Bomb sniffing dogs work and machines do not. See for yourself. So the government- took the power away from private businesses – and now they dole out our tax money to their buddies in the corporations. It’s corruption and you can only have such massive corruption with the government!

    I really don’t have any more time for you so I’ll leave you with this. Every single sector of the economy that the government stays out of is doing incredibly well. Computers, cell phones, and all kinds of technology.. prices keep getting lower and quality goes up. The opposite is true for sectors government is involved in. Health care (yes the government has been messing with it for decades now), Education (No child left behind- what a joke) and on and on. A total mess.

    I tried to have a civil conversation with you but you just couldn’t resist opening the door to name calling. So goodbye and have fun being an idiot.

  • Anonymous

    let me ask you this. what business is it of yours what someone else does? that is what i learned in sociology . its nothing but sick disgusting micro management of everyone but yourself.

  • Anonymous

    Anyone who reads this discussion to this point will see that you are blatantly dishonest. When I responded to your previous post, I didn’t look at all the posts I had previously made. I trusted that if you said I used some words I must have used them. That was my first mistake. Trusting you to engage honestly. Actually I never used the words “unbelievable” or “stupid or crazy” in any of my previous posts as you claimed. You put words in quotes as if I had used them, when I hadn’t used them at all. You went from that level of dishonesty, which is pretty damn disgusting and slanderous, to claiming I was being “willfully ignorant.” Then you mendaciously claimed that it was I who had opened “the door to name-calling, ” when in fact the only “name-calling” that was done here were the words you said I used that I didn’t use and your calling me “ignorant.” These kinds of tactics in an argument are just as bankrupt as your ideas. I can say the ideas are stupid and illogical and unworkable and misdirected, that’s really not name-calling, is it? Not anymore than pretending the ideas are logical is name-calling. But your tactics here are evidence that libertarian types will do anything to discredit anyone who tries to engage them at the level of their palpably ignorant ideas. No matter how many lies they have to tell to do it.

    So on several levels the biggest mistake I have made so far was trusting you to quote me accurately and letting you control the rhetoric.

    The problem is not “the government;” “the government” does not take bribes, people do. You make it sound as if there are people and then there is “the government.” I guess you forget that the most corrupt people in “the government” are those who come to “the government” from private industry. The people who Reagan and others since him put in charge of the same agencies that they are supposed to be regulating. “The government” is not corrupt, the people appointed to government positions are. Those people aren’t born with “the government” stamped on them somewhere like a return address, they move to the government from the same private industries that libertarians claim are going to solve the problem if they are just given carte blanche to do whatever they want without any government oversight because people can still take them to court. If any of the procedures currently in place could solve the problem, you wouldn’t have anyone thinking up these fanciful ideas for you to propagate. The reason you and people like you are here ranting incessantly against “the government” is because all the current remedies don’t work. So pretending that if “the government” couldn’t “monopolize” regulations everything would be great is just plain silly. I have shown that there is no reason why companies can’t go beyond government regulations and do things better now. Argument debunked.

    There is no government monopoly on anything as I have shown except enforcement. And right now the people in the government charged with enforcement are not doing a very good job. But that can be rectified by improving the way those enforcement regimes function. I don’t see anywhere how people such as yourself the free market is going to enforce anything. Why not do away with police officers, some of them take bribes. Let the free market enforce traffic regulations, if someone is speeding and they hit you take them to court why should the crooked police officer have a monopoly on who saying who was at fault. The insurance companies shouldn’t have to take the word of a policeman let the free market decide who is in the right. We can just let “the market” decide who is speeding and who should pay fines. The market will take care of it. Sure! Let’s get rid of the police department because some cops are on the take.

    You say “the market” will patrol, control, and enforce rules and regulations on these corporate entities. As if “the market” was another kind of entity instead of being made up of the same people who are at the center of all the corruption, graft and criminal activity that is currently going on today. As if once these entities are free from what little government oversight there is “the market” will ensure that these companies do the right thing. But I have shown repeatedly that they could be taking those same actions that you claim they will take later right now and they are not! Why? You can’t explain that. Argument debunked! You claim that “the market” will take care of the problems and that all remedies currently available will still be available except for “the government” once “the market” takes over. But those remedies that you are claiming will still be available to solve the problems are not solving the problems now so why would anyone be willing to accept the argument that they will be able to do so once “the government” is replaced by “the market” which could be taking care of all the problems right now if in fact they wanted to. As I have shown again and again “the government” is not preventing good people from doing the right thing. People are motivated by greed and profit to do the things they do; “the market” is where the profit is produced, it is where the greed is encouraged. The kinds of thinking that dominate “the market” and the kinds of thinking that make “the government” as ineffective as it currently is.

    The other inherent problem with capitalism that your “market” solution overlooks is “the market” tendency to aggregation, to combine and conglomerate into fewer and fewer and bigger and bigger controlling entities, like we have seen in the last fifty years in the media industry. Over time whatever competition exists the tendency is for the slightly more successful companies, which means those who can charge the most relative to the amount that they spend to get the job done. There really is no other consideration. The winner is always the entity who can create the most profit. That is why they call it the profit motive. And thinking that insurance company executives are going to be any less willing to pay off particular agencies rather than “the government” or that executives working for a particular entity are going to be any less willing to take a pay off for a certain outcome on a report of interest to them because they are in “the market” instead of “the government” is either naive or as long as you have introduced the term “willfully ignorant.”

    Let’s look at a coal producer like Massey Energy shall we. The CEO of that company is literally killing people for profit. That is what he is doing. How can the marketplace stop that activity? It can’t! He doesn’t sell to individual people who buy coal to heat their homes; there isn’t any way to boycott Massey Energy, he sells his coal by the trainload to huge electrical companies who all have monopolies and want to pay the least amount they can for the coal they need to generate their electricity. The people who buy the electricity don’t know whose coal made their particular kilowatts, nor can they do anything about it anyway; they have no choice as to whose electricity or whose coal makes it. The people making those purchasing decisions at the electricity companies are not governed by altruism they are governed by the profit motive, the same profit motive you claim will protect the miners, once “the government” is out of the way. Wrong! The company will then have to answer to no one once “the government” is out of the picture. Oh, sure the wives and children of the dead miners can take the coal company to court after their husbands and fathers are dead, but they can do that now and that hasn’t stopped companies like Massey from killing people for years. The same basic argument applies to oil refineries, even if the individual could trace their individual gasoline purchases back to the offending refineries they would still have no power, because say refinery A is selling their gasoline to Shell, so the people boycott Shell for selling gas from a refinery that has serious safety issues and where people are constantly dying. These people still have to get their gas from somewhere so they all start going to Sun Stations, now Sun has to find a new source of gas so they look around and find that the refinery that used to sell to Shell now has excess product to sell. “The market” has once again worked to ensure that the consumer has no power. Once again argument debunked. All taking “the government out of the equation does is give companies and individuals within “the free market” the ability to do whatever they want whenever they want with no oversight whatsoever or if there is any oversight, to have it always come after the fact.

    As long as you pretend that “the government” is some alien entity like “the blob” you can scream all you want about “the government” coming to get you. The people who run the corporations (that you claim are going to solve everything) move back and forth between positions in “the government” and positions at corporations an they not motivated by some ignorant altruism to do the right thing at the corporation and then suddenly motivated by greed and profit seeking when they take a government position. They are the same people, they are motivated by the same greed and profit no matter where they are at. The people who inhabit “the government” are supposed to act as referees, if the referee is doing a bad job, the answer isn’t to remove all referees or worse let the fans decide, it is to fire the corrupt referees and hire new ones.

    I notice that no where during this entire debate no matter how many times I mentioned the financial industry or other examples, you never engaged those examples or debunked any of my examples. You also never explained why someone like Greenspan who was for about 50 years a strong defender of the very ideas you have promulgated here now publicly admitting that he was wrong. As I have said several times, Greenspan was big enough to admit publicly that he was wrong why can’t you follow his example? Do you think he was only smart when he believed as you do and that he is “stupid” today or do you think that he just doesn’t have enough information?

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