Author: 71 Republic

Dear Congress, Do Your Job

By Addie Mae Villas | USA

So far, Congress has been in session for 180 days for the Senate and 183 for the house. On top of this, the house averages eighteen-hour work weeks, while everyday Americans work well over forty hours a week. Rep. David Jolly proposed a bill in October of 2015 that would require Congress to be in session for at least forty hours a week. Jolly stated that “A work week in Washington should be no different than a work week in every other town across the nation.” To no one’s surprise, the bill received no cosponsors and was quickly failed on all sides. The problem with Congress is that they hold the power to limit their terms and increase the amount of time that they actually work. But, this has not happened, and will not happen because Congress has stopped working for their constituents, the American people. But, they ought to do their job because we pay them $174,000 per year with our taxes to pass legislation.

The average term spent in the house is 9.4 years and 10.1 for the Senate. This is supplemented by the fact that Patrick Leahy (D-VT) has been in office for forty-two years and below him is Orrin Hatch (R-UT) who has served for forty years. We limit our president to terms, but we simply allow the politicians to stay stagnant in Congress. With congressmen and women tending to gravitate towards the incumbent in elections, it is no surprise that the same people are always elected. In races, the incumbent has a clear advantage, they typically raise $165,368,296 more than their opponents and have the benefit of name recognition and support in Congress. Also, PACs tend to support the incumbent as well, again making it extremely hard for newcomers to have a seat at the table. The problem with incumbents is simply nothing gets done. In the past years, debt has only increased and liberties have only been infringed more and more. Thomas Jefferson once said Congress should “return into the mass of the people and become the governed instead of the governors” and in essence, live under their policies.

With the current status of Congress, not much is being achieved. In the age of voting off of parties, non-partisan issues are never seen as so, and the major parties are unable to ever come to an agreement are work together to solve problems that are affecting everyone but them. Take the healthcare issue. Many can agree that the Affordable Care Act put in place by the Obama administration destroyed healthcare for millions and caused premiums to increase, yet, with the new administration and Congress, there still is no repeal and replacement. Politicians are no longer in the business of helping the people, but rather just achieving the name of senator or representative. One can look to the recent special election in Alabama as a prime example of this. Roy Moore, a seriously flawed candidate, refused to step down when the allegations of sexual harassment broke. Many called for this step-down, and many agreed that he would not be the best candidate to represent the state of Alabama. But, in the end, Moore decided to stay in the race, despite not having the approval of current senators and the public, and in the end, Alabama elected their first democrat senator in twenty-four years.

The corruption in the government and the so-called “swamp” is not going anywhere anytime soon. But, it is about time that we take a stand and demand that Congress works for us. We must change the motive of working for their own interests and start working for the interest of the American people. In the words of Ayn Rand “Stop supporting your own destroyers. The evil of the world is made possible by nothing but the sanction to give it.” take a stand and let’s make Congress work for us.


Communists Take Nepal by Storm

By Owen Heimsoth | NEPAL

Nepal, a country bordering China and India, has chosen communists in their first election after centuries of being a monarchy.

The United Marxist Leninists (UML) and the Maoist Centre have taken control of not just the federal government in Nepal but lead in 6 of the 7 provinces of Nepal.  Their GDP per capita is a measly $837, which makes them one of the poorest countries in the word.

The two communist parties are currently in talks to unite as one party. They are currently just partners. The Maoists were formerly coalition partners with the Nepali Congress, a left-leaning party, but ditched them in favor of the UML. This allowed for the communists to have a majority in the newly formed government.

None of the seven provinces formed in the new 2015 Nepal constitution were given formal names, but “Provence No. 2” was the only one of seven provinces to not elect parties not led by either of the communist parties.  The proposed name of this province is “Janakpur.”

The “most-likely” next Prime Minister is tipped to be Khadga Prasad Oli. He served as PM for just under a year after being elected in October 2015 and resigning in August 2016. He currently serves as the leader of the United Marxist Leninists.

Vote counting isn’t completely completed for the parliament, but the communist win is almost guaranteed. They ran on the platform of helping the working class. Of course, most of Nepal is in the working class. Which of course, is most of the country. Over 30% of the country lives in poverty and 80% depend on farming to make their money.

Communism still continues to not work. North Korean and Venezuelan citizens are struggling to stay alive. Those are also countries with significant natural resources. North Korea is sitting on trillions in natural resources and Venezuela has some of the largest oil reserves in the world. They could be successful countries but communism/socialism has put them into ruins. What does Nepal have? Not much.

Communism surely isn’t the way to build up a country out of extreme poverty. Nepal’s status as a weak and poor country is likely to continue as long as communists are in charge.

Virginia’s Censorship Laws May Be More Dangerous Than We Think

By Emily Merrell | VIRGINIA

In the state of Virginia, the code of law suggests that citizens use no profanity in public. Many places have anti-profanity signs and the like. Letting out an f-bomb in Virginia is a misdemeanor! Although it is a very old law, many people are still charged and can be charged a $250 dollar fine at the minimum.

A state lawmaker from Richmond Virginia is currently attempting to eliminate this law. The conservative Michael Webert is a farmer that believes in the right to free speech and understands that things happen that can trigger people to let out a dirty word. “When I cursed, my mother told me not to and handed me a bar of soap,” he said, “you shouldn’t be hit with a Class 4 misdemeanor.”

Clearly, any logical thinker will agree with Webert. Business owners can kick people out or ask them not to swear. However, lawmakers that voted against this law could be accused of “promoting profanity.” There’s another law in Virginia that violates free speech and that is the “flag burning” law. This law is also enforced despite the supreme court passing that flag burning is not a crime.

Virginia is violating people’s free speech. However, there’s more than just politics to these laws. Emily Post was an American author that wrote about etiquette for a formal society. The Emily Post Institute that is still run by her family still believes in keeping a lid on the censorship of profanity in order to keep a formal and polite society.

A researcher of profanity from Columbia University has answered his thoughts on these rules. It aims to “enforce politeness, and that is not something the law is equipped to do,” said Jesse Sheidlower, author of ‘The F-Word’.

While this law is often challenged and is clearly wrong, a recent video has shown it being enforced. Police took a reporter from a media outlet straight to the ground following an argument. “If you curse again you will go to jail.” an officer says. The reporter replied “F— this” and was charged with disorderly conduct.

Is it possible that we may be overlooking this law? We definitely are. The state of Virginia is violating our human rights to self-ownership and free speech and if they keep this up more states could follow along. Especially, within our current social justice society, censorship is not a fictional idea in our dystopian novels anymore. With our current political climate certain words, media, and ideas may be banned. And the enforcement of these Virginia Law shows that this could happen any day now.

The Gender Pay Gap is Perpetuated by Young Women Who Choose Low-Paying Jobs

By Jason Patterson | USA

The gender pay gap is by young female adults who choose jobs that pay less, a major study has found.

Even though teenage girls have a higher chance of attending a university, their male counterparts tend to major in professions with higher paying salaries, as the University College London (UCL)’s Institute for Education has shown in their latest study.

“Importance of recognizing the role of both boys’ and girls’ choices in perpetuating labor market inequalities” Professor Lucinda Platt, reported.

Shortly after she added that teenagers should be “encouraged and supported to think beyond gender roles and consider a range of future career options.”

Research has proven that girls thought they had a 71 percent chance of going to university, and 14 percent of girls were certain they would attend one.

On the other hand, with boys, the average expectation was 63 percent, and just under 10 percent were certain they would attend university.

They then asked what career aspirations the young people may have, and the average hourly wage for the occupations that girls aspired to was 27 percent lower than the boys.

Over 7,700 teenagers in the UK who are all part of the Millennium Cohort Study, a study which has followed their lives since they were born at the turn of the century.

When they were asked these questions at 14, the most popular jobs for both boys and girls included some highly-paid careers. However, the pay among the jobs girls aspired to was on average much lower.

In this study, they did not include the option of becoming a professional sports player due to the overwhelming majority wanting to play in the NFL and the NBA and according to the NCAA, only 1.7 percent of college football players and 0.08 percent of high school players play at any professional level. Only 1.3 percent of college hockey players and 0.1 percent of high school players play professionally. In basketball, only 1.2 percent of male and 0.9 percent of female college players play pro ball; for both, only 0.03 percent of high school players make it. And only 1 percent of college soccer players and 0.04 percent of high school players go pro.

Girls wanted to be either a medical profession, a secondary school teacher, a singer, the legal profession, a vet, a nurse or a midwife. For the boys, it was a professional sportsman, a software developer, an engineer, the army, or an architect.

Males and Females both favored jobs where the workforce was dominated by their own sex. Boys chose occupations with an average workforce that is 74 percent male, while girls chose jobs where women make up 59 percent of the workforce.

The final statements were by Dr. Sam Parsons, a co-author, saying he was surprised to find such “gendered differences” in young people’s aspirations. He said that “Despite aiming high academically and professionally, girls still appear to be aiming for less well-paid jobs.”

Rejoice, Because Net Neutrality is Gone!

By Ashton Barwick | USA

It’s official; on Thursday, December 13th, the FCC finally repealed net neutrality.

The internet has been set ablaze by hysteria over net neutrality. One question that everyone has asked is: What will become of the internet once it’s gone? The internet has always been a beacon of liberty because of its ability to advance faster than the government can legislate. However, in February of 2015, the Federal Communications Commision passed net neutrality in response to Comcast throttling access to illegal websites. Comcast, one of the largest internet service providers, is protected by a myriad of regulations designed to protect them from competition. The market is in a constant state of competition between suppliers. Businesses have to face two types of competition: potential and actual. Potential competition is just as threatening as actual competition because it forces the producer to keep prices low and quality high. Competition filters out the inept and the malicious.

How did the market for internet service become so volatile?

Internet service providers usually do a perfunctory job of ensuring quality internet access, but who’s to blame? Capitalism is often the scapegoat for most because it is easier than combing through pages of regulation. A government can completely destroy a market, and people will still blame capitalism and beg for even more regulation. This phenomenon is exactly why internet service leaves much to be desired. Local governments require ISPs to pay exorbitant costs and navigate through oceans of red tape. They also have to enter contracts with public utilities so they can rent space for wire connections to publicly owned electricity poles. This results in one ISP being granted monopoly privilege over a certain jurisdiction. Consequently, the supply curve shifts left, but government prevents potential suppliers from taking advantage of the augmented supply curve.

Despite all of the corporatism, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.

Trump has recently reignited the debate over whether online transactions should be taxed beyond their current levels. Currently, only sales taxes can be collected on transactions on the state level. However, in 2014, Congress passed the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act (H. R. 3086; 113th Congress) which bans state and local taxation of internet access. This was a big win for free speech because the government now cannot legally impede your access to the internet. The internet has been in the sights of the government since its inception. In a Firing Line debate, with William F. Buckley, they debated whether sales on the internet should subject to taxation by the Federal government. Christopher Hitchens spoke in favor of the legislation citing that it would equalize the playing field. The only problem is: you could use that line of reasoning to justify just about any tax increases. William F. Buckley and his team brought up many great points, but one did stand out. Many businesses that pay taxes also sell things over the internet so the many businesses would be demolished because they would be taxed twice. Businesses rely on the internet to make a profit because it is one of the few tax havens left. Amazingly, the internet has survived relatively unscathed, and it will continue to be the backbone of American commerce for the foreseeable future.

Szoka, Berin. “Don’t Blame Big Cable. It’s Local Governments That Choke Broadband Competition” Wired. July 2013.

Hillebrand, Mary. “Buckley Bows Out With Internet Tax Debate” Ecommerce Times. December 1999.

Selyukh, Alina. “FCC Repeals ‘Net Neutrality’ Rules For Internet Providers” NPR. December 2017.

Jagoda, Naomi. “Trump reopens fight on internet sales tax” The Hill. July 2017.