Thursday, December 31, 2009

The AGW Plot Thickens!

No Rise of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Fraction in Past 160 Years, New Research Finds

ScienceDaily (Dec. 31, 2009) — Most of the carbon dioxide emitted by human activity does not remain in the atmosphere, but is instead absorbed by the oceans and terrestrial ecosystems. In fact, only about 45 percent of emitted carbon dioxide stays in the atmosphere.

However, some studies have suggested that the ability of oceans and plants to absorb carbon dioxide recently may have begun to decline and that the airborne fraction of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions is therefore beginning to increase.

Many climate models also assume that the airborne fraction will increase. Because understanding of the airborne fraction of carbon dioxide is important for predicting future climate change, it is essential to have accurate knowledge of whether that fraction is changing or will change as emissions increase.

To assess whether the airborne fraction is indeed increasing, Wolfgang Knorr of the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol reanalyzed available atmospheric carbon dioxide and emissions data since 1850 and considers the uncertainties in the data.

In contradiction to some recent studies, he finds that the airborne fraction of carbon dioxide has not increased either during the past 150 years or during the most recent five decades.

The research is published in Geophysical Research Letters.

Congressional Reform Act of 2010

(Note. I would give the proper accreditation if I knew who composed this list. It came to me via email, signed as "A Fellow American".)

1. Term Limits: 12 years only, one of the possible options below.

a. Two Six-year Senate terms
b. Six Two-year House terms
c. One Six-year Senate term and three Two-Year House terms

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

2. No Tenure / No Pension:

A congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

3. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security:

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund moves to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, Congress participates with the American people.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, server your term(s), then go home and back to work.

4. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan just as all Americans.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

5. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

6. Congress looses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

7. Congress must equally abide in all laws they impose on the American people.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

8. All contracts with past and present congressmen are void effective 1/1/11 .

The American people did not make this contract with congressmen, congressmen made all these contracts for themselves.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

Feel free to add or change anything in the comment section.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Midnight at the Oasis

One of the great things about this time of year is that Congress is not in session. Christmas Day has come and gone and we're enjoying the last few days of the holiday season. Come Monday, January 4th, most kids will be back in school and we adults will have to focus on work until the next break, usually Spring Break.

While the untamed masses are hunkering down for the reality of the new year, what will Congress be doing?

Reconciliation of the Senate and House healthcare bills? (Obama has to sign something!)

Cap and Trade legislation? (Heaven forbid!)

Amnesty for illegal immigrants? (Aka: Get Out the Vote Act of 2010)

Whatever it might be, I doubt that I will be pleased. Sarah Palin put it best in a Facebook post on December 22nd, "Midnight Votes, Backroom Deals, and a Death Panel"

We seem to see a pattern emerging with the 111th Congressional session thus far. Consider the beginning of the legislative calendar for 2010:

January 6th - Congress convenes
January ?? - State of the Union Address
February 2nd - Presidential Budget released (brace yourself!)
February 16th - Presidents' Day

What havoc can this Congress (and President) wreak in this little window of the new year? It's hard to tell, but however it goes, I suspect we'll be seeing more midnights at the oasis (Aka: the governmental trough).

For those of you who don't remember "Midnight at the Oasis", enjoy:

Are You Ready for Some Football?

All politics aside for a moment, I found this video to be fascinating. I would love to see how other pro and college quarterbacks measure up to Drew Brees' accuracy.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Are the Israelis preparing for action?

Very interesting developments in Israel:

First-ever Heads of Missions Conference at the MFA
24 Dec 2009
Israel’s ambassadors and consuls general serving throughout the world will discuss broad diplomatic and strategic issues at a conference to be held next week in Jerusalem.

RedState has a very interesting analysis here.

There are other analyses that suggest that the situation in Iran is fast-reaching a tipping point:

The Start of an Iranian Intifada

Israel: Iran will have nuclear weapons by 2011

Iran in chaos: Ten seized in Tehran swoop on reform protesters as opposition accuse police of firing on protesters

Iran: Victory of Blood over the Sword

The Iranian Body Snatchers at Work

All of this take place while the President of the United States tries to decide whether or not to send John Kerry to Iran. This administration is hopelessly out of touch with the meaning of liberty. God help us all!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

My Wish for 2010

THROW ALL THE BUMS OUT!

I don't know how else to say it. In my lifetime and, perhaps, our country's lifetime, there has never been such a serious assault on our system of government...from within!

I can also think of only one person with the moxie to carry this out. Go here. Nonetheless, whomever that person ends up being, it must be carried out.

And don't believe the horse crap that you hear about "there's no turning back" once this legislation or that legislation is passed. Keep in mind that the free market will ALWAYS fill the gap. It did after the Civil War in the south and, although reviled by southerners at the time, carpetbaggers served the vital purpose of aiding reconstruction.

The one thing that we can't skimp on going forward is our military preparedness. If our adversaries sense blood in the water, the greatest union in the history of the world could become a footnote in history.

Oh, and if you want more, check out My Christmas Wish.

Friday, December 25, 2009

My Christmas Wish

Santa doesn't bring us everything we may want, a lesson we all must learn at a very young age. The very best things in life are those things that we must work for on our own. I remember my mother passing along some biblical wisdom when I was a youngster, which I'll paraphrase: "God helps those who help themselves."

We only have our own efforts to ensure our success in life. This country was founded on that very concept and it is the only reason that our government has endured as long as it has. Why anyone would want to change that is beyond belief, yet that is exactly what has now happened.

We are now beyond the capacity to "fix" Washington. It is broken and beyond repair. So, you ask, what do you do when something is beyond repair? You tear it down and begin anew. It is time to get back to the basics.

Washington needs to be dismantled. It's present structure cannot be maintained, nor should be. Every single member of the Washington community, both elected or otherwise, needs to be purged. Recognizing the impossibility of that fact, we must begin somewhere. I suggest we begin with all elected officials and primarily those that have been a party to our present malaise. That list is long and extends to both political parties. So be it!

I will vote for the candidate of "No". I don't want to hear about what he or she thinks they could do better than the present bunch. I only want to hear about his or her commitment to ending the structure that currently exists. As with the current banking structure, the government needs to be broken down and services sent back to the regional level.

Wall Street needs to be disemboweled. The first and best way to do that is to re-enact something similar to the Glass-Steagall Act, ending forever the connection between investment banks and commercial banks. We have seen the disastrous results of that act's repeal with the financial meltdown of 2008. We cannot allow that to happen again.

A full, complete audit of the Federal Reserve must begin immediately. Only by shining the light of day on its practices can we begin to understand how to reform it. Special interests on Wall Street that have governed the Fed's actions must be exposed for the corrupt actions that they have wrought. Wall Street interests need to be replaced with Main Street interests.

I really don't think the above is asking a lot. We deserve so much less out of Washington than what we're getting.

Merry Christmas One and All!

We can't lose our sense of humor no matter what.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Detroit = Statist Utopia

If you want to see what you get when you allow statists to take over, check out this video from Steven Crowder:

Alaska: God's Country



Hat tip: Conservative4Palin

LGF Dropped From Rush's Blogosphere

As recently as a few days ago, Little Green Footballs was still listed among the blogs that Rush refers to for show prep. I just noticed today that LGF is no longer listed.

Here are the blogs that Rush includes in his Total Stack of Stuff:

• The Page • NR's The Corner • Hugh Hewitt • Power Line
• Red State • Strata-Sphere • Michelle Malkin • Debbie Schlussel
• Hot-Air • Insta-Pundit • American Thinker • Climate Depot

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Protecting the Death Panels

In case anyone ever doubted the existence of death panels, we now have further evidence of their planned role in healthcare reform. The fact that the Senate bill is structured to protect the rationing board by requiring a supermajority (two-thirds vote) to overrule its findings should send chills up your spine. This provision is designed to limit future legislatures' ability to curb its role in cost reduction through rationing. But don't accept my word for it. Listen to Jim DeMint discuss his concerns in a speech on the Senate floor.



If this healthcare bill is so wonderful, why does it seek to protect some committee's ability to ration our healthcare?

Merry Christmas Barack!

Could this possibly be translated as a big lump of coal?















Courtesy of Rasmussen Reports.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Looking Good!


I am truly amazed at how the mainstream media is awash in all things Sarah Palin. With her book tour, Sarah Palin has captured positive press day in and day out. Positive comments from liberal newsmen about her appearance at the Gridiron Dinner in Washington, DC, underscore that fact.

Her appearance on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien was genius. Despite the fact that her appearance was kept under wraps to the audience, it electrified them!

She also looks really good in a snow hat.

For Whom the Bell Tolls

Rasmussen tells the tale:



Can't wait until Monday!

Sarah Does William Shatner

Monday, December 7, 2009

Bait and Switch

There seems to be an attempt to diminish our history in favor of current-day "emergencies". The mainstream media is awash in stories about the pending confluence in Copenhagen regarding global warming.

I might remind you that the science is far from settled. You can read much more about the scandal that is global warming if you google "climategate".

It seems that the Obama administration goes to great lengths to divert our attention from what was to what (in their opinion) should be. Of all days to start any discussion of "climate change", why begin on the day that defines American sacrifice: Pearl Harbor Day?

Forget about climate change, we need a lesson in history.



And for those of you who choose to remember, there is this:



Think about this. More people were killed on 9-11 than at Pearl Harbor. And yet we do not describe our current conflict as a war against America. Why?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Neda: Casualty to Icon

Update8: Iranian student protester Neda Soltan is Times Person of the Year

Update7: Neda's mother: "I asked her not to go".

Update6: From the Guardian UK website "How Neda Soltani became the face of Iran's struggle"

Update5: Iranians in Dubai hold vigil for Neda.

Update4: Additional information on Neda, courtesy of CNN.


Update3: Apparently the family of Neda is now being persecuted by the Iranian government. Read the story HERE.

Update2: John McCain pays tribute to Neda on the Senate Floor


Update 1: For an update from the LA Times, dated 6-22-09, go HERE.



Neda has become a rallying cry in the Iranian protests and being portrayed as a true martyr.

The video is very graphic, so be forewarned. It provides a gut-wrenching story unlike any printed word.



She surely meant the world to her family. Here she is with an unidentified gentleman, moments before being shot. Is that person her father or a college professor, as some now claim? I suspect a college professor is most likely, given her newly-reported age of 26. Previous reports of Neda being only 16 lent some credence to the gentleman being her father, which now seems doubtful.

Wikipedia continues to update information about Neda. Go HERE.

To all the protesters in Iran, know that the patriots of the United States stand with you!

The grave of Neda

God rest her soul!


*

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Global Warming Science = Demise of Mainstream Media

This is one of the most unreported scandals in the history of modern-day journalism. If ever there was a defining moment to signal the total demise of the mainstream media, this is it.

From the Wall Street Journal:
'Cap and Trade Is Dead'
The recently disclosed emails and documents from University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit compromise the integrity of the United Nations' global warming reports.
Although I don't believe for a minute that the fraud that is global warming will go away, I do believe that the mainstream media is gasping its last breath. The fact that the "hackers" chose to go directly to the internet with their findings is proof that the mainstream media is no longer needed to break a big story.

The only thing left for the "lamestream" media to do is to cover their tracks. It seems that the NY Times is the front-runner in that regard.

The White House is in lock-step with the mainstream media. Will it go down with the sinking ship that is the mainstream media? What about when they have a chance to report something and don't?

The Telegraph.co.uk has a good update here. Looks like Lord Monckton was right!

Friday, November 27, 2009

A Good Read...

As many of you have certainly done, I purchased Sarah Palin's book and have begun reading about "An American Life". Although I've not finished it (currently on Chapter 2), I will try my hand at a review when finished. My Thanksgiving weekend now belongs to Sarah's story. More to come..........

Sarah Palin's Thanksgiving Wishes

Per Sarah Palin's Facebook page:
Happy Thanksgiving (Wed at 7:01pm)

Over three hundred years ago, a group of settlers fleeing religious persecution decided to set a new course for human history in a new frontier. Those early pioneers chose a rocky shoreline to establish their way of life. Centuries later, America continues to set the example of what can come from a free and hardworking people. We truly remain the shining city upon a hill that the colonial leader John Winthrop implored us to be.

What started as a small colony in the territory that would eventually become the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has progressed into the greatest and most prosperous nation in history. Americans remain the freest people on earth because of our cherished Constitution and the system of government it establishes.

We have so much to be thankful for. We should recognize especially the sacrifices made on our behalf by those in uniform. Thousands of Americans will be spending Thanksgiving overseas in combat zones in order to protect our liberty and way of life. We should give thanks to those who willingly put their lives on the line for the rest of us. Where would we be without them?

We are also thankful for what God has granted us. We are truly blessed in America with rich natural resources, plentiful energy sources, fertile land, beautiful cities, and the talented and industrious people we call “our fellow Americans.” We pray that God will continue to bless us.

In his farewell address to the nation, President Reagan reminded us that “all great change in America begins at the dinner table.” Thanksgiving is an opportunity to discuss where we are as a nation at this moment in our history and where we should be heading in order to remain prosperous and free. Take time to discuss these things with each other, and take time to teach the young people in your family about our nation’s history so that they may never forget all that we have to be proud of and thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!

- Sarah Palin

Contrast these remarks with what follow:
Prepared Remarks of President Barack Obama
Weekly Address
Thursday, November 26, 2009

For centuries, in peace and in war, in prosperity and in adversity, Americans have paused at this time of year to gather with loved ones and give thanks for life’s blessings. This week, we carry on this distinctly American tradition. All across our country, folks are coming together to spend time with family, to catch up with old friends, to cook and enjoy a big dinner – and maybe to watch a little football in between.

As always, we give thanks for the kindness of loved ones, for the joys of the previous year, and for the pride we feel in our communities and country. We keep in our thoughts and prayers the many families marking this Thanksgiving with an empty seat – saved for a son or daughter, or husband or wife, stationed in harm’s way. And we say a special thanks for the sacrifices those men and women in uniform are making for our safety and freedom, and for all those Americans who enrich the lives of our communities through acts of kindness, generosity and service.

But as much as we all have to be thankful for, we also know that this year millions of Americans are facing very difficult economic times. Many have lost jobs in this recession – the worst in generations. Many more are struggling to afford health care premiums and house payments, let alone to save for an education or retirement. Too many are wondering if the dream of a middle class life – that American Dream – is slipping away. It’s the worry I hear from folks across the country; good, hard-working people doing the best they can for their families – but fearing that their best just isn’t good enough. These are not strangers. They are our family, our friends, and our neighbors. Their struggles must be our concern.

That’s why we passed the Recovery Act that cut taxes for 95 percent of working people and for small businesses – and that extended unemployment benefits and health coverage for millions of Americans who lost their jobs in this turmoil. That’s why we are reforming the health care system so that middle-class families have affordable insurance that cannot be denied because of a pre-existing condition or taken away because you happen to get sick. We’ve worked to stem the tide of foreclosures and to stop the decline in home values. We’re making it easier to save for retirement and more affordable to send a son or daughter to college.

The investments we have made and tough steps we have taken have helped break the back of the recession, and now our economy is finally growing again. But as I said when I took office, job recovery from this crisis would not come easily or quickly. Though the job losses we were experiencing earlier this year have slowed dramatically, we’re still not creating enough new jobs each month to make up for the ones we’re losing. And no matter what the economists say, for families and communities across the country, this recession will not end until we completely turn that tide.

So we’ve made progress. But we cannot rest – and my administration will not rest – until we have revived this economy and rebuilt it stronger than before; until we are creating jobs and opportunities for middle class families; until we have moved beyond the cycles of boom and bust – of reckless risk and speculation – that led us to so much crisis and pain these past few years.

Next week, I’ll be meeting with owners of large and small businesses, labor leaders, and non-for-profits from across the country, to talk about the additional steps we can take to help spur job creation. I will work with the Congress to enact them quickly. And it is my fervent hope – and my heartfelt expectation – that next Thanksgiving we will be able to celebrate the fact that many of those who have lost their jobs are back at work, and that as a nation we will have come through these difficult storms stronger and wiser and grateful to have reached a brighter day.

Thank you, God bless you, and from my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving.

Who do you think embodies the true spirit of thankfulness?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Twisted Logic

It defies logic to understand what the Obama administration's priorities are:

Navy SEALs Face Assault Charges after Capturing Most-Wanted Terrorist
Navy SEALs have secretly captured one of the most wanted terrorists in Iraq — the alleged mastermind of the murder and mutilation of four Blackwater USA security guards in Fallujah in 2004. And three of the SEALs who captured him are now facing criminal charges, sources told FoxNews.com.

The three, all members of the Navy's elite commando unit, have refused non-judicial punishment — called a captain's mast — and have requested a trial by court-martial.

Ahmed Hashim Abed, whom the military code-named "Objective Amber," told investigators he was punched by his captors — and he had the bloody lip to prove it.

Now, instead of being lauded for bringing to justice a high-value target, three of the SEAL commandos, all enlisted, face assault charges and have retained lawyers.

Matthew McCabe, a Special Operations Petty Officer Second Class (SO-2), is facing three charges: dereliction of performance of duty for willfully failing to safeguard a detainee, making a false official statement, and assault.

Petty Officer Jonathan Keefe, SO-2, is facing charges of dereliction of performance of duty and making a false official statement.

Petty Officer Julio Huertas, SO-1, faces those same charges and an additional charge of impediment of an investigation.

Neal Puckett, an attorney representing McCabe, told Fox News the SEALs are being charged for allegedly giving the detainee a “punch in the gut.”

“I don’t know how they’re going to bring this detainee to the United States and give us our constitutional right to confrontation in the courtroom,” Puckett said. “But again, we have terrorists getting their constitutional rights in New York City, but I suspect that they’re going to deny these SEALs their right to confrontation in a military courtroom in Virginia.”

The three SEALs will be arraigned separately on Dec. 7. Another three SEALs — two officers and an enlisted sailor — have been identified by investigators as witnesses but have not been charged.

FoxNews.com obtained the official handwritten statement from one of the three witnesses given on Sept. 3, hours after Abed was captured and still being held at the SEAL base at Camp Baharia. He was later taken to a cell in the U.S.-operated Green Zone in Baghdad.

The SEAL told investigators he had showered after the mission, gone to the kitchen and then decided to look in on the detainee.

"I gave the detainee a glance over and then left," the SEAL wrote. "I did not notice anything wrong with the detainee and he appeared in good health."

Lt. Col. Holly Silkman, spokeswoman for the special operations component of U.S. Central Command, confirmed Tuesday to FoxNews.com that three SEALs have been charged in connection with the capture of a detainee. She said their court martial is scheduled for January.

United States Central Command declined to discuss the detainee, but a legal source told FoxNews.com that the detainee was turned over to Iraqi authorities, to whom he made the abuse complaints. He was then returned to American custody. The SEAL leader reported the charge up the chain of command, and an investigation ensued.

The source said intelligence briefings provided to the SEALs stated that "Objective Amber" planned the 2004 Fallujah ambush, and "they had been tracking this guy for some time."

The Fallujah atrocity came to symbolize the brutality of the enemy in Iraq and the degree to which a homegrown insurgency was extending its grip over Iraq.

The four Blackwater agents were transporting supplies for a catering company when they were ambushed and killed by gunfire and grenades. Insurgents burned the bodies and dragged them through the city. They hanged two of the bodies on a bridge over the Euphrates River for the world press to photograph.

Intelligence sources identified Abed as the ringleader, but he had evaded capture until September.

The military is sensitive to charges of detainee abuse highlighted in the Abu Ghraib prison scandal. The Navy charged four SEALs with abuse in 2004 in connection with detainee treatment.
It is my understanding that the Seals CHOSE to subject themselves to court-martial rather than nonjudicial punishment. By doing so, they are allowed to have their voices heard and humble the U.S. military into giving them a minor "wrist-slap".

This comes after the Obama administration decides to hold a civilian trial in Manhattan for the 9-11 mastermind and 4 fellow terrorists. Obama apologists are lining up to defend the decision. Shameful!

To make matter worse, we now have a token appearance by a terrorist's lawyer to the Wall Street Journal's opinion pages, in an attempt to show "fair and balanced". Are there any "hangin trees" left in Manhattan, or elsewhere?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Jackie Mason Defends Sarah Palin

This is a truly great monologue by Jackie Mason.



Hat Tip: Conservatives4Palin

Monday, November 23, 2009

Saturday, November 21, 2009

At The End of the Day...

I watched my son's football team get defeated in the playoffs by the #1 team in Texas. Although his play was limited, his contribution was spot-on. He long-snapped on a fake punt and put it perfectly in the kicker's hands. They ran for a first down. On the only other punt, he long-snapped and made it down field to assist on the tackle. All in all, he did his job. I'm very proud of him.

I sulked on the way home from my son's game because they lost.

I watched the Senate vote to begin debate on the healthcare bill. I sulked for about 10 minutes after the vote, but then started blogging.

I'm now watching Texas play Kansas. Texas leads at halftime, 27-6. I'm done sulking.

There's always something else you can hang your hat on. At the end of the day, I will go to bed proud of my son, disappointed in the Senate vote, but lifted by the Longhorns' strong play against Kansas.

I can't help but think...what if I lived in Kansas? Would I still be sulking?

ACORN and Holder Sittin' In a Tree...

I'm sorry, but do you get a sense that there is some kind of symbiotic relationship between ACORN and Eric Holder?

Why does the Attorney General of the United States choose NOT to pursue a major investigation into ACORN? Does ACORN have something on him?



A good synopsis comes from Andrew Breitbart's appearance on Hannity's America HERE.

Travesty in the Senate

As I write this, the U.S. Senate is voting on cloture to allow debate on the healthcare bill.

By all accounts, there are now a minimum of 60 bums to throw out of Washington.

This is a very sad day for our country. To think that a handful of people would impose their will on what a majority of Americans DO NOT WANT is a complete travesty.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Weekend Wish List

I haven't done this for a while, but I feel compelled to express my wishes.

I hope that the Senate vote to begin debate on the healthcare bill fails. I've emailed my Senators and voiced my opinion. Have you?

I envision a Monday morning sales figure for Sarah Palin's new book to exceed 1 million. And I hope I'm low-balling the estimate.

It's hard not to look at Sarah when watching one of her videos, but I must say that I would really love to have a beer and a moose burger with Todd. He seems to be the kind of guy I would love to hang out with, along with our wives, of course!

I can only hope that every husband in America has a wife who decides to take charge of the carpet-cleaner. Although I have had the carpet-cleaning duties in the past, my wife has decided that my efforts deserved improvement. God Bless her!

One last thing: Lord, if my son's football team can beat the #1 team in the state tomorrow, I will be forever grateful. It may just inspire those kids to understand that they can accomplish whatever they set their hearts and minds to. That would be a good lesson for all!

Sarah and Trig

A very touching video. Thank you Glenn Beck!

Education for Dummies

I saw this today on Rush Limbaugh's website and have to share it:
10-Year-Old Sent to Principal for Writing in Rush for President

Caller: I love your show and I love you and I just wanted to share, quickly, a story with you about my ten-year-old son. During the election, they were given a sheet of paper, and they had on there, you know, to vote for Obama, McCain, or "other." And I found out "other" meant, like, Ron Paul or somebody else. Well, Chance put "other,' and he put "Rush 'Baugh'" because he didn't know your whole last name. So I got a call from the principal to come down there, and they got him in the principal's office, and they asked him to read to me what he had wrote down. Well, I knew who he was talking about, and I said, "He's talking about Rush Limbaugh," and they said, "No, we know that. That's not appropriate for him to be talking about him in class. You shouldn't be throwing your views on him." And Chance said, "She's not. All I know is that she says that Rush is smarter than my daddy." (laughing) So he thought you should have been president.

RUSH: Yeah. And the school people were alarmed by this to the point they called you in. Did you actually say that they told you that you shouldn't be throwing my views onto your son?

CALLER: Yeah, that I should not be getting a ten-year-old involved in adult stuff; and so I said, "Well, then why are you doing the election?" Because the school overwhelming voted Obama.

RUSH: What did they say? Yeah. What did they say to that?

CALLER: They just told me that wasn't appropriate for a ten-year-old, and I was like, "Well, you know, I didn't know that you all are having an election." I didn't know they were having it. Chance didn't even know they were having it. But apparently in class they were asking the kids how they voted, and everybody voted Obama, and when Chance said "other," and said "Rush," the teacher stopped him and then sent him to the office, and then that's where they called me. And they thought --

RUSH: How did this end up?

CALLER: Oh, it ended up with me telling her to mind her own, you know, business. And they obviously know where I stand, 'cause I've got a car with bumper stickers, you know? That's how I let it known that who I am.

RUSH: Goodness gracious.

I'd link to the whole thing, but you have to be a member of Rush 24/7.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sarah Palin - A Firm Faith in God

I love videos about Sarah. They do such a good job of giving us more insight into this truly remarkable woman.

Obama is truly laughable!

This interview demonstrates how totally out-of-touch Barack Obama is with the majority of Americans.

Sarah Palin: The Greatest

Don't you wish she was coming to a bookstore near you?



Hat Tip: Conservatives4Palin

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Mitch Daniels - A Conservative's Governor

Just so you know, there are success stories out there in the states. You just have to look outside of what the mainstream media would have you focus on.



Hat Tip - Redstate.com

Obama's Treachery

We have begun debating the wisdom of trying Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and a number of his co-conspirators in a federal, civilian court in Manhattan. Despite all the legal arguments that are being bandied about and the stated departure from the historical precedent of using military tribunals, what about examining this from a different perspective? What if the decision to pursue a civilian judgment was a purposeful attempt to create confusion? What would be gained from that confusion and who would gain it?

Eric Holder is no dummy. He understands the legal system and, as U.S. Attorney General, he has access (presumably) to the best legal minds in our country. What I find curious is that I have not heard many legal arguments in favor of such a civilian trial. It's almost as if the legal benefits were not part of the consideration. Instead, what if we look at the consequences of such a trial, those "unintended" consequences?

What happens to the commander in the field of battle? Is that commander now forced to consider reading an enemy combatant a Miranda-rights statement? Isn't that a requirement of our legal justice system, such that it's absence renders all verbal evidence gained from the "accused" to be inadmissible in a court of law? What happens when an interpreter must be found to insure that the enemy combatant understands those Miranda rights? What happens when the enemy combatant realizes that silence is an option? What happens if the commander in the field uses coercive techniques anyway, knowing that those under his command may be in imminent danger without valuable intelligence that the enemy combatant may have? Will that commander be prosecuted for doing so?

I do not believe for a second that those questions were NOT given consideration as Eric Holder debated whether or not to proceed with civilian trials. I think they were considered a plus. How else would you completely hamstring our military and neuter its effectiveness? After all, isn't a strong military expected to uphold and defend our Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic? Sounds to me like the military's capabilities are anathema to the Obama administration's agenda.

No, I believe that those "unintended" consequences are INTENDED consequences. This administration has shown its disdain for the military in more ways than one. This is just another example of Obama's treachery in trying to subvert everything that this nation stands for. It is a way to further weaken something that may stand in his way to creating his version of a socialist utopia with him as its leader.

Update. It now appears that Obama himself is doing his part to "taint" the criminal trial. Per Jonah Goldberg:
Every day it appears more and more that the White House wants it both ways. They want to claim that this is a fair trial but also an act of vengeance. The terrorists will be treated as if they might be innocent — key to a fair trial — but at the end of the day they’ll get their comeuppance. If KSM & Co. get off on a technicality, don’t worry, they’ll still be locked up, but when they’re convicted the White House will claim it was always a fair process. They’ll get a fair trial from an impartial jury in New York, but it’s “fitting” and “poetic justice” that the jury will be drawn from the community that was viciously attacked on 9/11. Fair but vengeful, honest but foreordained, instructive to the world but really just about the law: the rhetoric from the White House and the Democrats isn’t persuasive to those who listen closely and certainly won’t be persuasive to foreigners Obama is determined to impress.
Obama's 2-cents worth is here. More double-speak if you ask me.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Washington Rolls Over

In another example of Obama's disdain for the Founding Fathers and American exceptionalism, comes this:












For all that we fought for in all the wars past, one idea was center stage : the United States of American does not bow to anyone. Our entire founding was based on the concept that all men are created equal. No deity, emperor or dictator could ever be elevated to a level that required a genuflective behavior on the part of the citizens of the United States. Even though that conduct is anathema to our founding principles, look at where we are now. President Obama has made it commonplace to demonstrate supplication to anyone with a man-given title of prominence.

This behavior is an absolute outrage.

As a counter-example, I have not found a single picture of Barack Obama demonstrating the same behavior when meeting with the Pope. In addition, Obama refuses to meet with the Dalai Lama, a peaceful religious leader and long-time friend of the United States.

The question is: Why?

Why does the President of the United States of America insist on degrading the principles of our founding and elevating the standing of despots and socialists? Why does Obama abandon our commitment to allies and kowtow to long-time adversaries on the world stage? Why does Obama see fit to unravel all that we've gained in the 233 years since our founding? Perhaps he just doesn't think as you and I. Perhaps he doesn't think FOR you and I.

Who the hell DOES this guy thinks he works for? He sure doesn't work for anyone that George Washington would recognize. I understand that Washington's grave has developed an odd hump in the last 12 months or so. Must be the result of him rolling over in his grave....over and over and over!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Texas High School Football

I have always been a huge football fan. But I never realized how HUGE football is in Texas until I started attending varsity high school games this year. Oh sure, you HEAR about how big football is in Texas, but you don't KNOW how big it is until you start attending high school games.

My son is a junior, playing inside linebacker and deep-snapper on punts for his high school team. He had the misfortune of injuring his knee four weeks ago (playing 3-on-3 flag football, no less). That injury required surgery, which he had three weeks ago. Today was the first day he was able to suit up with his team since his injury. He hasn't been cleared to play linebacker yet, but was cleared to play his part as deep-snapper. The good news is that today was their first game in the play-offs.

Normally, play-offs take place at the largest high school football stadium in the area. Not in Texas. My son had his first football play-off game at the new Cowboy Stadium in Arlington. Talk about awesome! I never would have gone to a game at that venue due to the expense. Normally, on NFL days, it costs $60 bucks to PARK at the stadium. Today, it cost $10. Normally, a ticket on the 40-yard line in the 5th row would cost upwards of $500 for an NFL game. Today, it cost $12 on a first come, first seated basis. My son texted me as his team arrived at the stadium, "Just got to jerry world!". A bit later, in his words, "Were underground goin to the locker rooms...its intense!"

The massive video screen was in use, as well as the hundreds of video screens throughout the stadium. It was truly a memorable experience. Oh, by the way, my son's team won 48-18. That's the good news. The bad news is that next week they play the number 1-rated team in the state of Texas. Although my son didn't get to play today (his team never punted), he may have a better chance next week. But both he and I wouldn't mind if his services were not required, if you know what I mean.

Football is HUGE in Texas and being able to play in the best-possible venue for football ANYWHERE makes it that much more significant. The kids all played their hearts out. I was thrilled to be there to experience Texas football at its finest!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Socialistic Leanings = Incoherent Actions

From Merriam-Webster Online:
incoherent - adjective - lacking coherence: as (a) lacking cohesion, loose, or (b) lacking orderly continuity, arrangement, or relevance: inconsistent ; (c) lacking normal clarity or intelligibility in speech or thought .
With that definition, let's look at the ways that the current administration talks around capitalism. They just can't acknowledge the market forces that have created the most dynamic and robust economy in the history of the world. They cling to their tired and discredited theories as if they are still relevant if only....

This administration is blinded by a socialist ideology. Unfortunately, both the Executive and Legislative branches of the U.S. Government are currently governed by that same ideology.

As examples, consider this:

Eric Holder decides to abandon all reason and U.S. history to try the mastermind of the 9-11 attacks in a NY civilian court.

Or this:

A Parallel Universe

Turn off C-SPAN...ALL versions. Don't watch network news....ALL flavors. Turn off TV for one week and Tivo all your favorite programs. With the exception of real-time sports, there is nothing to suggest that you will miss anything watching your favorite programs one week in arrears.

Cancel your newspaper subscriptions. As for me, I only get the newspaper on the weekends to catch up on all the sports news I missed. I think I can do without that, however, because I get just as much (or more) by going online. Plus, I can go straight to my favorites when online and don't have to worry about seeing some obnoxious headline before I find the sports section.

Negative news is everywhere you look, unless you stick to the above suggestions. Last night, I was glued to my computer, trying to find up-to-date news on the House vote on healthcare. I ended up watching C-SPAN online. What a huge mistake.

I doesn't matter to Pelosi what the million of Tea Party participants stand for. It doesn't matter to Democrats that thousands of people took time out of their schedules on a Thursday to travel to Washington to protest the House healthcare bill. Nope, those guys on the Democrat's side of the aisle don't give a rip what you think.

A very large swath of people in this country consider themselves to be conservative. Conservative beliefs are predominant among voters. But it doesn't matter. A bunch of left-wing idealogues have reached critical mass in Washington and are determined to force-feed their ideology to the rest of us. Let the voters be damned. Let the U.S. Constitution be damned. Let our future generations be damned.

We live in a parallel universe compared to the leadership in Congress. We might as well get used to it. For the next twelve months, we need to focus on one thing and one thing only: getting out the vote in 2010! It's time to throw ALL these bums out once and for all! Forget about what the "pundits" say about the futility of those efforts. They are wrong. Don't listen to anyone that says that the mess in Washington can't be undone. They are wrong.

If ever our parallel universe needed to replace theirs, now is the time.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sarah - Go The Distance!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Remember Alaska!

No matter who she speaks to, she speaks to all of us.

Take Heart: God IS in Control!

Coin Controversy?

In Sarah Palin's own words:

Coin Controversy?

It is stunning to read and hear about this “coin controversy.” At a recent speech in Milwaukee I discussed the troubling fact that we too often move God to the side in our public life, and gave as an example the shift of the words “In God We Trust” to the edge of the dollar coin. My comments were not about this President or this Congress – this change predated them. I was merely making a point about a disturbing trend in our country, after which I moved on to discuss some encouraging trends. People who try to read more into such straightforward comments are working hard to find a controversy where there is none.

- Sarah Palin

Lou Dobbs Is Leaving CNN

We look forward to Lou's next endeavor and wish him well! He has truly been a champion of capitalism and for that we are forever grateful.

The text of Mr. Dobbs’ announcement about leaving CNN:
This will be my last broadcast here on CNN, where I’ve worked for most of the past 30 years, and where I have many friends and colleagues whom I admire deeply and respect greatly.

I’m the last of the original anchors here on CNN and I’m proud to have had the privilege to helping to build the world’s first news network.

I’m grateful for the many opportunities that CNN has given me over these many years. I’ve tried to reciprocate with a full measure of my ability and my energy.

Over the past six months it’s become increasingly clear that strong winds of change have begun buffeting this country and affecting all of us, and some leaders in media, politics and business have been urging me to go beyond the role here at CNN and to engage in constructive problem solving as well as to contribute positively to the great understanding of the issues of our day. And to continue to do so in the most honest and direct language possible.

I’ve talked extensively with Jonathan Klein — Jon’s the president of CNN — and as a result of those talks, Jon and i have agreed to a release from my contract that will enable me to pursue new opportunities.

At this point, I’m considering a number of options and directions, and I assure you, I will let you know when I set my course. I truly believe that the major issues of our time include the growth of our middle class, the creation of more jobs, health care, immigration policy, the environment, climate change, and our military involvement, of course, in Afghanistan and Iraq.

But each of those issues is, in my opinion, informed by our capacity to demonstrate strong resilience of our now weakened capitalist economy and demonstrate the political will to overcome the lack of true representation in Washington, D.C.

I believe these to be profoundly, critically important issues, and I will continue to strive to deal honestly and straightforwardly with those issues in the future.

Unfortunately, these issues are now defined in the public arena by partisanship and ideology rather than by rigorous, empirical thought and forthright analysis and discussion. I’ll be working diligently to change that as best i can. And as for the important work of restoring inspiration to our great free society and our market economy, I will strive as well to be a leader in that national conversation.

It’s been my great honor to work with each and every person at this wonderful network. I will be eternally grateful to CNN, to Ted Turner, and to all of my colleagues and friends, and of course to you at home. I thank you, and may God bless you.
Lou Dobbs - A man of principle!

Sarah Palin Honors the U.S. Military

From Missy4SarahPalin: "Governor Sarah Palin has always honored and supported our U.S. Military. This video is a tribute to her patriotism and our heroic troops. God bless Governor Palin and our military."

Death Panels Begin!

In case you had any doubts about the existence of "death panels", doubt no more. They are already here.

Opponents of Obamacare have argued that government-run healthcare will ultimately lead to rationing. Moreover, this rationing will impact the elderly and the infirmed, since these two groups command the biggest slice of the healthcare pie.

Look no further than the H1N1 vaccine fiasco. The Obama administration has done it's best to whip up a panic in the media over the swine flu outbreak, urging anyone and everyone to obtain the vaccine. The only problem is that there is not enough vaccine to go around. Be that as it may, what is a bureaucrat to do? Simple - ration the vaccine. The question is, who will be denied?

From seMissourian.com comes a column written by a senior citizen, which says, in part (emphasis mine):
The doctor overseeing my health care advised me to get an H1N1 flu shot. I've been under a six-year treatment program for a chronic infection, plus I have heart and lung problems. Therefore, I am considered a high risk. Fortunately, my doctor had three shots available, but I would have to get approval from my county health department. Much to my surprise, the woman at the health department apologized and told me that even though I was a senior citizen at high risk, the health department had been instructed to approve shots only for children and pregnant mothers. I asked when a shot for my situation might be available. "We really don't know. Check back with us sometime in December."
You can read the whole thing here.

Hat Tip: Rush Limbaugh

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Berlin Wall: Freedom's Calling

The Berlin Wall did not come down because the oppressed people of the Soviet bloc wanted more government hand-outs, like Obamacare. It came down because the people wanted the freedom to choose their life's own path.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Obama Said What!?

From The Corner (emphasis mine):
The President of the United States Said That? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]

President Obama, in his pitch to Democrats on the Hill today (from the New York Times):

Mr. Obama, during his private pep talk to Democrats, recognized Mr. Owens election and then posed a question to the other lawmakers. According to Representative Earl Blumenauer of Oregon, who supports the health care bill, the president asked, “Does anybody think that the teabag, anti-government people are going to support them if they bring down health care? All it will do is confuse and dispirit” Democratic voters “and it will encourage the extremists.”

Sarah Palin Responds

From her Facebook page, Sarah Palin responded to the House passage of its version of Obamacare:

The Pelosi Bill Was Rammed Through on Saturday, But Sunday’s Coming
Yesterday at 10:34pm

We’ve got to hold on to hope, and we’ve got to fight hard because Congressional action tonight just put America on a path toward an unrecognizable country.

The same government leaders that got us into the mortgage business and the car business are now getting us into the health care business.

Despite Americans’ decisive message last Tuesday that they reject the troubling path this country has been taking, Speaker Pelosi has broken her own promises of transparency to ram a health “care” bill through the House of Representatives just before midnight. Why did she push the 2,000 page bill this weekend? Was she perhaps afraid to give her peers and the constituents for whom she works the chance to actually read this monstrous bill carefully, if at all? Was she concerned that Americans might really digest the details of a bill that the Wall Street Journal has called “the worst piece of post-New Deal legislation ever introduced”?

This out-of-control bureaucratic mess will be disastrous for our economy, our small businesses, and our personal liberty. It will slam businesses at a time when we are at double-digit unemployment rates – the highest we’ve seen in a quarter of a century. This massive new bureaucracy will cost us and our children money we don’t have. It will rob Americans of more of our freedom and further hamper the free market.

Make no mistake: we’re on course to have government commandeer one-sixth of our economy. The people who gave us Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac now want to run our health care. Think about that.

All of us who value the sanctity of life are grateful for the success of the pro-life majority in the House this evening in its battle against federal funding of abortion in this bill, but it’s ironic because we were promised that abortion wasn’t covered in the bill to begin with. Our healthy distrust of these government leaders made us look deeper into the bill because unfortunately we knew better than to trust what they were saying. The victory tonight to amend the bill and eliminate that federal funding for abortion was great – because abortion is not health care. Now we can only hope that Rep. Stupak’s amendment will hold in the final bill, though the Democratic leadership has already refused to promise that it won’t be scrapped later.

We had been told there were no “death panels” in the bill either. But look closely at the provision mandating bureaucratic panels that will be calling the shots regarding who will receive government health care.

Look closely at provisions addressing illegal aliens’ health care coverage too.

Those of us who love freedom and believe in open and transparent government can only be dismayed by midnight action on a Saturday. Speaker Pelosi’s promise that Americans would have 72 hours to read the final bill before the vote was just another one of the D.C. establishment’s too-common political ploys. It’s broken promises like this that turn people off to politics and leave them disillusioned about the future of their country.

But despite this late-night maneuvering, many of us were paying close attention tonight. We’ll keep paying close attention. We need to let our legislators in Washington know that they still represent us, and that the majority of Americans are not in favor of the “reform” they are pushing. After all, this is still a country “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” We will make our voices heard. It’s on to the Senate now. Our legislators can listen now, or they can hear us in 2010. It’s their choice.

- Sarah Palin

Friday, November 6, 2009

An Angel In The House

This story really touched me when I read about it yesterday. I see that Instapundit has linked it as well. With all the horrible news we hear day in and day out, this is one that will definitely tug at your heart-strings.

Here is the story:

Just before her sixth birthday, Elena Desserich was diagnosed with brain cancer and given 135 days to live. She lived 255 days, passing away in 2007. After her death, Elena’s parents, Brooke and Keith, found hundreds of notes from Elena hidden around the house — in between CD cases, between bookshelves, in dresser drawers, in backpacks….

"It just felt like a little hug from her, like she was telling us she was looking over us"


Read more about it on the website her parents created to support a cure for her illness.

I have no doubt that her parents now know they'd had an angel in the house.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Political Correctness Run Amok

We have all learned to think twice before speaking something that may offend a listener. In certain social circles, we refrain from speaking our opinions for fear of being cast out. We learn to toe the line in uttering a single word that would offend some far-off "constituency". We do this because we have had the concept of "political correctness" pounded into our heads by the sophistry of our elected "elites".

Political correctness has become the biggest affront to our liberty since we defeated the Soviet Union and ended the Cold War. In a world without competing, global, political ideologies, "political correctness" became the way to diminish our political standing. By painting our very words as racist, intolerant, divisive, homophobic, close-minded, etc., etc., etc., the left has neutered our ability to stand up for anything we believe in.

A good example is the recent kerfluffle over Rush Limbaugh's attempt to buy a minority interest in an NFL team. Roger Goddell, the commissioner of the NFL, and Jimmy Irsay, the owner of the Indianapolis Colts, derided Limbaugh as "divisive" and therefore unworthy of an ownership position in the NFL. Rush Limbaugh was not "politically correct" and was eliminated from the investor group he was a part of.

Who defines "Political Correctness"? In a word, politicians. Politicians are always looking for ways to boost their standing with a certain "constituency". Rush Limbaugh was tarred and feathered for politically incorrect quotes...that he never made!

The end-game of liberal politicians is to completely neutralize their opponents' ability to speak against anything for fear of being "politically incorrect". This tactic MUST FAIL! It is time for everyone to stand up and speak out for what they believe in. If I can be so bold, I'll quote what Superman stood for in the 60's TV series: Truth, Justice and the American Way.

A further example of political correctness run amok is the failure of reporting on the Fort Hood shootings. Instead of examining the possibility of radical, Muslim extremism playing a role in the shooter's motivation, a white-washing has occurred. Everything BUT religious extremism is being used to to explain the shooter's actions.

We run the real risk of sugar-coating our enemies' motivations to the extent that we open ourselves up to further attacks from within. If we can't spot the enemy in our midst, then the enemy will learn to exploit that weakness.

Vetting the Muslim Soldier

Although it's too early to tell, this terrible incident seems to speak to the military's process for vetting Muslims before induction into the US Armed Forces. I have no doubt that there will be much, much more reporting on this in the next several days.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Dede's Dump

As if the Republican leadership had enough problems trying to recover from their disastrous endorsement of Dede Scozzafava, now comes this: Dede Scozzafava has thrown her support to the Democratic candidate. Hey Michael Steele, is that egg on your face or are you sprouting a new birthmark?

The RNC has apparently thrown nearly $1 million dollars at this campaign. You would think that the Republican leadership would have had some more influence on their hand-picked candidate. Now, they get to deal with the aftermath.

Couldn't have happened to a smarter group of people.

For Whom Does the Bell Toll?

With the amazing turn of events in the NY-23 Congressional race, what does this portend for:

Dede Scozzafava - Goes without saying, she's political history. I say good riddance, especially in light of her parting endorsement of Owens. Great job of vetting this candidate GOP!

Newt Gingrich - He has made himself irrelevant. Will Fox News begin to diminish his role? He was way, way, way behind the curve on this one!

Mitt Romney - Road kill?

Mike Huckabee - A day late and a dollar short?

RNC - Time for new leadership. Michael Steele, you had your chance and have blown it at every turn.

NRCC - Jeff Sessions had better get his act together...fast!

Tim Pawlenty - Follower

Sarah Palin - Leader

Saturday, October 31, 2009

NY-23

I really don't think that there's any amount of money that can lift the Democrats up enough to win this election. I've heard that Soros is investing money in Owens' campaign, but I highly doubt it. This district has always trended Republican, why would the Democrats throw good money away?

What I expect to happen is a landslide for Hoffman. In the aftermath, the Democrats will be dismissive, suggesting that this race is a mere pimple on the ass of, well, the Jackass.

The fun of this election is watching how the national Republican leadership spins it. I suspect that they will follow the Democratic tack, and suggest that this particular race is inconsequential.

Yeah, right! Over the next few weeks we are going to see a purge. This election decides who runs the national Republican party. Do the big-wigs run it, or do the grass-roots?

The RNC is now at a cross-roads. Do they continue to defer to local politics, or do they take a stand for the base? Do they make a stand for conservatism, which the national polls suggest comprises 40% of the electorate, or do they continue to pursue the "big-tent" theory?

I'm reminded of Dirty Harry:

"I know what you're thinking. "Did he fire six shots or only five?" Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?"

Well, Republicans, you must be asking yourselves, is this a mere blip on the screen, or should we be worried? After all, Sarah Palin seemed to make this race a major issue. Is she bluffing, or is she really going to endorse "conservatives", no matter their party? Well, do you feel lucky, punk?

ESPN Gets It......albeit related to football!

Republican Party Groupthink

Update: I wrote this three weeks ago. It looks like the NY-23 congressional race bears this out.

(Originally published 10/09/09)

Every politician desires to have the ability to influence other people. For the most part, that desire helps define what a politician does. The politician's ability to influence others allows them to hold sway with the political machinery that affords them the opportunity to run for elective office. Once elected, that same desire manifests itself in the ability to get other politicians to follow you as you drive legislative initiatives into law, a payback to those whose "chits" you redeemed or still hold.

Politicians build an inventory of "chits" that they can use at critical times during a run for office. Political machinery is steeped in the tradition of trading "chits". It has helped build the foundational culture behind both major political parties. This culture helped create a structure that enabled our two major political parties to build national organizations. Unfortunately, this political structure does not always operate in a manner that has the best interests of the electorate in mind.

Now, consider the concept of groupthink. Groupthink gained prominence in light of the Kennedy administration's disastrous policy toward Cuba, culminating the the Bay of Pigs fiasco. Wikipedia defines it as follows:

Groupthink is a type of thought exhibited by group members who try to minimize conflict and reach consensus without critically testing, analyzing, and evaluating ideas. Individual creativity, uniqueness, and independent thinking are lost in the pursuit of group cohesiveness, as are the advantages of reasonable balance in choice and thought that might normally be obtained by making decisions as a group. During groupthink, members of the group avoid promoting viewpoints outside the comfort zone of consensus thinking. A variety of motives for this may exist such as a desire to avoid being seen as foolish, or a desire to avoid embarrassing or angering other members of the group. Groupthink may cause groups to make hasty, irrational decisions, where individual doubts are set aside, for fear of upsetting the group’s balance. The term is frequently used pejoratively, with hindsight.

Now that you have a basic understanding of groupthink, let's re-examine the structure of national political parties. They are, in essence, a fraternity of politicians schooled in the principles of the structure. This structure supports the apparatus used to achieve political goals. It does not necessarily exist along ideological lines since those ideologies can change over time. It must, however, adapt to these changing ideologies and continue to work toward the party's electoral victories.

I believe that the Republican Party is wallowing in structural groupthink. The political machinery is driven by the age-old process of trading "chits" and no longer knows how to adapt to the ideology of its party members, much less the electorate. How else do you explain the disdain shown toward such up-and-coming politicians like Sarah Palin? Sarah Palin has done nothing to warrant such treatment by her own political party. What she has done is challenge the status quo of the party machinery by her appeal to the party base.

The Republican Party does not know what to do with a candidate that has such an appeal at the grassroots level. It didn't know what to do with the appeal of Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan's strength was his ability to speak directly to the party base and, ultimately, build a broad majority among the electorate in general. The Republican Party did very little to elect Ronald Reagan. It was forced to finally get out of his way as he built up an organization that "trumped" the party bosses.

Nothing has changed in the Republican Party since the days preceding Reagan. The party is again being driven by the party bosses and their respective fiefdoms, all rolled together to form the Republican party leadership. The process of trading "chits" has re-established itself to the same result, one that maintains the structure at the expense of its members.

Sarah Palin must travel the same road as Reagan and she has precious little time to build an organization. She must counter the groupthink that lives in the Republican Party. She already has an ideology that appeals to the party base, as did Reagan, and I believe that we have not heard the end of her self-proclaimed "common-sense conservatism". If only the Republican Party could recognize its groupthink and see its salvation in a common-sense candidate from Alaska.

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Warrior Song



I'm reminded of a conversation that a CNN reporter had with an Army sniper. The CNN reporter asked "What do you feel when you pull the trigger on another human being?" After reflecting for a few seconds, the Army sniper replied: "Recoil".

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Obama's Artistic America

This short video made the list of 20 finalists in a health care video contest sponsored by Barack Obama's Organizing for America.



Sad to see what Obama's favorite organization thinks about "Old Glory".

Hat tip: Politico

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A Time for Choosing

This wonderful video is especially pertinent in today's political climate. Think about what Ronald Reagan would say about the travesty of the Republican Party's behavior in the NY-23 special congressional election.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Sarah Palin's Accomplishments

From Unbalanced Libra comes an excellent synopsis of Sarah Palin's accomplishments:

The most recent comment I received regarding Sarah Palin, from 'anonymous' no less - that she is a bimbo - gave me motivation to do a bit of research on the subject of accomplishments. So, just what did Sarah Palin accomplish? Are ya ready? This is going to be a long post!

Firstly, there is no government closer to the people than at the municipal level. Palin spent eight years in city government, winning a seat on the Wasilla City Council in 1992 mostly thanks to her opposition to tax increases. She went on to serve two council terms from 1992 to 1996. She was elected mayor of the fast-growing Anchorage suburb in 1996 and again in 1999. Mayor Palin had a record of reducing property tax levels, increasing municipal services and attracting new industry to her town. During her tenure in Wassilla, she was elected chair of Alaska's conference of mayors.

Next for Sarah Palin was service as chair of the Alaska Conservation Committee, a board which regulates the state's oil and gas industry. In this appointive position she began to gain what would become extensive and valuable knowledge and experience in the area of one of America's most pressing issues - energy. It was in this job where Palin first really demonstrated the toughness, political courage and maverick spirit that would years later so impress presidential candidate John McCain.

She resigned in January 2004 as head of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission after complaining to the office of Governor Frank Murkowski and to state Attorney General Gregg Renkes about ethical violations by another commissioner, Randy Ruedrich, who was also Republican state chairman.

State law barred Palin from speaking out publicly about ethical violations and corruption. However, she was vindicated later in 2004 when Ruedrich, who'd been reconfirmed as state chairman, agreed to pay a $12,000 fine for breaking state ethics laws. She became a hero in the eyes of the public and the press, and the bane of Republican leaders.

In 2005, she continued to take on the Republican establishment by joining Eric Croft, a Democrat, in lodging an ethics complaint against Renkes, who was not only attorney general but also a long-time adviser and campaign manager for Murkowski. The governor reprimanded Renkes and said the case was closed. It wasn't. Renkes resigned a few weeks later, and Palin was again hailed as a hero.

In 2006, Palin ran for governor and was elected in a landslide. According to Fred Barnes:

With her emphasis on ethics and openness in government, "it turned out Palin caught the temper of the times perfectly," wrote Tom Kizzia of the Anchorage Daily News. She was also lucky. News broke of an FBI investigation of corruption by legislators between the primary and general elections. So far, three legislators have been indicted.

In the roughly three years since she quit as the state's chief regulator of the oil industry, Palin has crushed the Republican hierarchy (virtually all male) and nearly every other foe or critic. Political analysts in Alaska refer to the "body count" of Palin's rivals.

"The landscape is littered with the bodies of those who crossed Sarah," says pollster Dave Dittman, who worked for her gubernatorial campaign. It includes Ruedrich, Renkes, Murkowski, gubernatorial contenders John Binkley and Andrew Halcro, the three big oil companies in Alaska, and a section of the Daily News called "Voice of the Times," which was highly critical of Palin and is now defunct.

As governor, Sarah Palin's list of accomplishments lengthened rapidly. She used her line-item veto to cut $268 million from Alaska's state budget.

She stood up to some of Alaska's most entrenched interests, including three big oil companies (BP, ConocoPhilips, and ExxonMobil) who hold the lease rights to much of Alaska's oil and gas wealth:

Once in office, Palin took an aggressive stance toward the oil companies. Her nickname from high-school basketball, "Sarah Barracuda," was resurrected in the press. Early in her term, she shocked oil lobbyists when she was so bold as to not show up when Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson came to Juneau to meet with her. Palin, after scrapping Murkowski's deal, would not give Big Oil the terms they wanted, yet insisted that the companies still had an obligation under their lease to deliver gas to whatever pipeline Alaska built. She invited the oil companies to place open bids to build a pipeline, but they refused. A bid by TransCanada, North America's largest pipeline builder, was approved by the legislature in August.

Palin also raised taxes on oil companies after Murkowski's previous tax regime produced falling revenues in 2007, despite skyrocketing oil prices. Alaska now has some of the highest resource taxes in the world. Alaska's oil tax revenues are expected to be about $10 billion in 2008, twice those of previous year. BP says about half its oil revenues now go to taxes, when royalty payments to the state are included. Recently, Palin approved gas tax relief for Alaskans, and paid every resident $1,200 to help ease their fuel-price burden.

Some other Palin accomplishments include supporting and signing an ethics bill passed by the Alaska legislature and creating the Alaska Health Strategies Planning Council to find innovative solutions to effectively provide access to, and help reduce the costs of, healthcare.

As governor, Palin is commander of her state's National Guard. Not content to merely sit on the title, she traveled to Kuwait to learn about her troops' mission there. On the return trip to Alaska, she stopped in Germany to to visit wounded soldiers in the hospital, an activity that Barack Obama did not see fit to engage in during his own overseas venture, blaming the Pentagon for his snubbing of the wounded.

More accomplishments: Gov. Palin signed a resolution in opposition to the FAA's plan to increase taxes on aviation fuel, impose user fees and slash airport funding. Also, before Palin became governor, her predecessor Frank Murkowski had purchsed a Westwind Two business jet for the governor's use at a $2.5 million price tag, despite the objections from the state legislature and the public. Her first order of business after taking office was to put the jet up for sale.

Palin did keep the governor's state-owned Chevy Suburban, but she got rid of the driver, saying it was wasteful for the state to pay someone to drive her around, since she was perfectly capable of driving herself. The governor's gourmet chef also got changed from a full-time to a seasonal-only basis because Palin considered it a luxury she didn't think Alaskans should be paying for. Her political enemies called all this "superficial pandering."

Alaska is the only one of America's states which borders on two foreign countries. Sarah Palin is chief executive of our most important energy state, one which lies only a few miles from Russian territory. She has negotiated sensitive agreements on fishing rights and other matters to keep the peace up there. She's also worked on important trade deals with other countries. She has received foreign heads of state and had discussions with them.

There are many benefits to having Governor Sarah Palin on the GOP presidential ticket, and many of them have been already been discussed extensively by both new media and old in the few short days since John McCain introduced her to the GOP in Ohio. They all rest on a rock-solid base of achievement. She is one very accomplished vice presidential nominee.

Sources:
http://newsminer.com/news/2008/may/23/palin-vetoes-millions-state-budget
http://money.cnn.com/2008/08/29/news/newsmakers/palin_oil.fortune/?postversion=2008083009
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122004983609584755.html?mod=djemEditorialPage