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Republican Reconciliation or Irrelevance?

Reconcile the Republican Party & Republican Voters

By Josh First

December 11, 2012

Things are not all good here in Republican land. Mitt Romney received fewer votes than John McCain received in 2008, even as attack dog Obama also received far fewer votes than his all-positive 2008 campaign. Despite Obama’s catastrophic economy, foreign policy failures (Benghazi), gaffes (“You didn’t build that”), corruption (Solyndra), and bizarre running mate (Biden), Republican enthusiasm for Romney was actually lower than Republican enthusiasm of four years ago. So even with all that was on the line, Republican voters were unwilling to go to the polls.

Recriminations abound about what caused Mitt Romney to lose: Incompetent staffers, inaccurate polling, a prolonged primary, poor ground game by complacent Republicans, uninspiring and flaccid moderate Republican, etc. Rather than re-hashing excuses and assigning blame, here’s one thing we can change for the next big race: Fixing the increasingly broken relationship between many Republican voters and the Republican Party establishment that is becoming an open contest.

The Republican Party ‘establishment’ includes the careerist elected officials, party bureaucrats, pollsters, financers, lobbyists, apparatchiks, consultants, and other functionaries and rock star groupies whose often low-risk, insulated careers and financial interests comprise the don’t-rock-the-boat wing. Registered Republican voters and principle-driven tea party activists, the “grass roots,” are not necessarily included in this group.

Because the Republican Party here is run as an enterprise, this contest has been cast as profit vs. principle. The Tea Party emerged from Central Pennsylvania, as fiscally conservative voters increasingly demanded responsible habits by the Republicans they had volunteered for, contributed to, and voted for, and across Pennsylvania and the nation it’s rapidly becoming a battle between them and the Party establishment, forget the Democrats.

Hitting the nail on the head back in February, Lehigh University professor Frank Davis said “There seems to be a struggle within the Republican Party between the traditional leadership and the conservative grass roots individuals and groups that are probably more mobilized now than they were a few years ago….the Republican Party has used these grass roots individuals to further the party establishment’s interests, and I think these people may want to [now] choose their own representatives, rather than rely on the leadership.”

Running a gazillionaire for president during the worst economy in 70 years, where his wealth contrasted with citizens’ daily reality, made sense early to the Party establishment, which was long ago greasing the skids for Romney staffers into county Party offices well before the primaries ended. Sure, I like Romney, admire his business acumen, donated to his campaign, went door to door for him, blogged for him, and voted for him. But someone more blue collar, more authentic is going to be more believable, more welcomed by Middle America.

Republican grass roots candidates lost several recent US Senate races, which establishment candidates would have had no greater chance of winning, but the establishment demanded they step aside. Here in Pennsylvania, candidates hand-picked by Republican Party leaders were also disastrous failures, from the primary to last month’s general election. These candidates made perfect sense to insiders. But when trotted out into the public venue, voters shot these perfect candidates down in flames. Does either camp have a corner on the market?

The onus for reconciling the two groups is fully on the Republican Party establishment; the “professionals.” Many Republican Party leaders have engaged in high-handed, controlling behavior that has alienated a growing number of registered Republicans, even the most dedicated. Republican voters and volunteers have been treated as wind-up toy soldiers, turned in a direction and told to march. Party intervention in primary races is one of the worst abuses. No matter how much the establishment may want Yes men to support the establishment’s intertwined political and business interests, the cost of alienating the base is too high. If the Party stays out of primaries and gives the people a voice, they’ll be rewarded with more inspired voters, more volunteers on the ground, more elections won.

The professional class of Republicans say they know what they are doing and everyone just needs to move out of their way and let them do their job. Maybe it’s true that the new grass roots activists lack credentials, but the professional class suffers from an inspiration gap, often pushing bland, plain vanilla, pre-fabricated, cookie cutter candidates who are “supposed” to win, but who fail after spectacularly expensive investments. The Republican Party does actually need Republican voters to get their candidates across the goal line, so will the Party leaders listen to the Party voters? For good reason, Democrat analyst Patrick Caddell recently asked “Can the Republican Party Avoid the Fate of the Whigs?”

Let us get an honest answer here: Is there sufficient humility among our Party leaders to learn from these mistakes, to look inside themselves, and take the necessary steps to reconcile?

If Republicans want to win elections, they need to be the Party of Opportunity, allowing the more conservative, independent-minded members to have a shot at full participation. If we are all in this together, then let’s start acting like it. Otherwise, factionalism and political irrelevance are staring us in the face.

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Forget Recriminations, Move America & The Republican Party Forward

Forget Recriminations, Move America & The Republican Party Forward

By Josh First

November 14, 2012

More than enough recriminations are flying around about who and what caused Mitt Romney to lose last Tuesday’s presidential election: Foolish staffers, inaccurate polling, Obama redistributing private property of America’s makers to the takers and thus buying their votes, a prolonged, punishing primary, poor ground game by complacent Republicans, uninspiring/insipid/kind/tepid/limp/weak/tame/nice/flaccid moderate Republican candidates, etc. Rather than re-hashing and reassigning the blame, let’s move America and our core, traditional values forward, analyzing things we can change to guide us.

Out of all of the reasons, causes, and excuses for last week’s unimaginable election failure, two solvable challenges do stand out: 1) Biased media reporting, and 2) the poor relationship between many Republican voters and the Republican Party establishment.

‘Media’ includes both the various faux news political advocacy outlets like ABC, CBS, NBC, NPR, PBS, NYT, MSNBC, Washington Post, etc. and otherwise known as the mainstream media, as well as the entertainment shows like Letterman, Jon Stewart, Jimmy Kimmel, et. al.

Republican Party ‘establishment’ includes the careerist elected officials, bureaucrats, pollsters, financers, lobbyists, apparatchiks, consultants, and other functionaries and rock star groupies whose often low-risk, insulated careers and financial interests comprise the don’t-rock-the-boat wing. Registered Republican voters and tea party activists are not necessarily included in this group.

Last Tuesday’s voting data show that Romney received fewer votes than McCain received in 2008, even as Obama also received far fewer votes than his all-positive campaign got in 2008. So, despite Obama’s catastrophic economy, foreign policy failures, gaffes, corruption, and bizarre running mate, Republican enthusiasm for Romney was actually lower than Republican enthusiasm of four years ago. Despite all that was on the line, Republicans were unwilling to go to the polls. Why?

As noted, the anti-Republican mainstream media artificially propped up a failed, corrupt Obama administration, and the Republican Party establishment again demonstrated its disdain for Republican voters and activists. These two issues are totally fixable. If Republican leaders want to fix them.

That the American mainstream media are political advocates first and foremost, and won’t report facts unless they hurt Republicans and conservatives, is well known and easily proven. Well, folks, stop whining about it! Fix it, change it, shape that battlefield! For all the money that goes into promoting Republican and conservative causes, why can’t we come up with more friendly news outlets, comedians (like Larry the Cable Guy, Jeff Foxworthy), and TV shows set up for them? Breitbart, The Blaze, Drudge Report, Washington Free Beacon, Frontpage Magazine, Project Veritas and other new media deserve our support and are making headway, but wouldn’t it help if wealthy Republicans purchased some of the nation’s failing newspapers and rejuvenated them to get back to reporting factual news, like the Benghazi cover-up? Wouldn’t it be enjoyable to see some of Breitbart’s investigative reporting show up in print in hometown newspapers, or on a news channel? Can no one create a conservative stand-up comedy club, or a conservative comedy TV show, to give a platform to Jon Stewart’s alter ego? Yes, we can. Richard Scaife can’t do it all by himself.

The second issue is Republican Party vs. Republican voters, sometimes called the grass roots. As in, profit vs. principle, or, “There seems to be a struggle within the Republican Party between the traditional leadership and the conservative grass roots individuals and groups that are probably more mobilized now than they were a few years ago,” said Lehigh University professor Frank Davis, back in February. “The Republican Party has used these grass roots individuals to further the party establishment’s interests, and I think these people may want to choose their own representatives, rather than rely on the leadership,” Davis observed.

The onus for reconciling the two groups is fully on the Republican Party leaders, staffers, and functionaries; the “professionals.” Many Republican Party leaders have engaged in high-handed, controlling behavior that has alienated a growing number of registered Republicans, even the most dedicated. Republican voters and volunteers have been treated as wind-up toy soldiers, turned in a direction and told to march. Party intervention in primary races is one of the worst abuses. No matter how much the establishment may want Yes men to support the establishment’s intertwined political and business interests, the final costs are just too high. Stay out and give the people a voice, and you’ll be rewarded with more inspired voters, more volunteers on the ground, more elections won.

Some examples: First, running a gazillionaire for president during the worst economy in 70 years, where his wealth contrasted with citizens’ daily needs…does that make sense? It sure did to the Party establishment, which was long ago greasing the skids for Romney staffers into county Party offices well before the last primary closed. Sure, I like Romney, admire his business acumen, donated to his campaign, went door to door for him, blogged for him, and voted for him. But someone more blue collar, more authentic is needed to connect to and persuade regular Americans.

Second example: Grass roots candidates lost several recent US Senate races, which establishment candidates would have had no greater chance of winning, but the establishment demanded they step aside. Here in Pennsylvania, candidates hand-picked by Republican Party leaders were also disastrous failures, from the primary to last week’s general election. These candidates made perfect sense to insiders. But when trotted out into the public venue, these perfect candidates went down in flames.

The professional class of Republicans say they know what they are doing and everyone just needs to move out of their way and let them do their job. Maybe it’s true that the new grass roots activists lack professional judgment, but the professional class suffers from an inspiration gap, pushing plain vanilla, pre-fabricated, cookie cutter candidates who are “supposed” to win, but who fail after spectacularly expensive investments. The Party does actually need Republican voters to get their candidates across the goal line, so will they listen to the voters?

Which leads to the second solvable challenge — successful candidates, their Party backers, and establishment leaders must unify the Republican Party. That means putting aside egos, picking up the phone, calling their opponents, and asking to meet with them, for their support and help. Having myself run in two Republican primaries in the past three years, let’s look at how that works. In one race, the insider victor, state senator Dave Argall, graciously contacted me, asked me for help in his general election, gave me opportunities to speak in public on his behalf, and turned my hard work into a benefit, rallying the Party. Dave has had a lot of races in the past few years, and he has won all but one of them. Establishment or not, the guy knows how to treat people right, he benefits from it, and so does the Party.

Contrast Argall’s generosity of spirit with the treatment I got over the past eight months from state and local Republican officials, who did everything possible to exclude and punish me for exercising a simple American right. Despite running one hell of a strong, last-second, pick-up campaign for state senate back in January (thanks to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court), most of the establishment pros treated me like some sort of disloyal pest, with a couple guys behaving outright disrespectfully to my face. One primary voter, a supporter of my opponent, gave our volunteer the middle finger from his front door; when we looked him up on the Internet, it turned out he is a leader in our opponent’s church. You know what? My supporters noticed this stuff. The establishment candidate from my race lost in the general election, attracting far fewer Republican volunteers and votes than he should have otherwise gotten in Republican bastions. From these circumstances the Tea Party recruits its newest members, and Republican voters stay home.

If I sound cranky, let me just get an honest answer to this one question: Is there sufficient humility among our Party leaders to learn from these mistakes, to look inside, and make the necessary tough changes?

In sum, if Republicans want to win elections, they need to be the Party of Opportunity. Change the media battlefield, and also act like a good man to your Party members, including the more conservative, independent-minded ones. We are all in this together, let’s start acting like it.

Stay in the conversation at www.joshfirst.com and on our political Facebook page

“Decline & Fall of the American Empire”: Couldn’t Have Said It Better Myself

For those of us who have struggled to make sense of last week’s historic vote, this writer sums up most of the most important take-aways. I urge you to read his article:

The Decline and Fall of the American Empire
By Rabbi Pruzansky
Posted on November 7, 2012 | 60 Comments

The most charitable way of explaining the election results of 2012 is that Americans voted for the status quo – for the incumbent President and for a divided Congress. They must enjoy gridlock, partisanship, incompetence, economic stagnation and avoidance of responsibility. And fewer people voted. As I write, with almost all the votes counted, President Obama has won fewer votes than John McCain won in 2008, and more than ten million off his own 2008 total.

But as we awake from the nightmare, it is important to eschew the facile explanations for the Romney defeat that will prevail among the chattering classes. Romney did not lose because of the effects of Hurricane Sandy that devastated this area, nor did he lose because he ran a poor campaign, nor did he lose because the Republicans could have chosen better candidates, nor did he lose because Obama benefited from a slight uptick in the economy due to the business cycle.

Romney lost because he didn’t get enough votes to win.

That might seem obvious, but not for the obvious reasons. Romney lost because the conservative virtues – the traditional American virtues – of liberty, hard work, free enterprise, private initiative and aspirations to moral greatness – no longer inspire or animate a majority of the electorate. The notion of the “Reagan Democrat” is one cliché that should be permanently retired.

Ronald Reagan himself could not win an election in today’s America.

The simplest reason why Romney lost was because it is impossible to compete against free stuff. Every businessman knows this; that is why the “loss leader” or the giveaway is such a powerful marketing tool. Obama’s America is one in which free stuff is given away: the adults among the 47,000,000 on food stamps clearly recognized for whom they should vote, and so they did, by the tens of millions; those who – courtesy of Obama – receive two full years of unemployment benefits (which, of course, both disincentivizes looking for work and also motivates people to work off the books while collecting their windfall) surely know for whom to vote; so too those who anticipate “free” health care, who expect the government to pay their mortgages, who look for the government to give them jobs. The lure of free stuff is irresistible.

Imagine two restaurants side by side. One sells its customers fine cuisine at a reasonable price, and the other offers a free buffet, all-you-can-eat as long as supplies last. Few – including me – could resist the attraction of the free food. Now imagine that the second restaurant stays in business because the first restaurant is forced to provide it with the food for the free buffet, and we have the current economy, until, at least, the first restaurant decides to go out of business. (Then, the government takes over the provision of free food to its patrons.)

The defining moment of the whole campaign was the revelation (by the amoral Obama team) of the secretly-recorded video in which Romney acknowledged the difficulty of winning an election in which “47% of the people” start off against him because they pay no taxes and just receive money – “free stuff” – from the government. Almost half of the population has no skin in the game – they don’t care about high taxes, promoting business, or creating jobs, nor do they care that the money for their free stuff is being borrowed from their children and from the Chinese. They just want the free stuff that comes their way at someone else’s expense. In the end, that 47% leaves very little margin for error for any Republican, and does not bode well for the future.

It is impossible to imagine a conservative candidate winning against such overwhelming odds. People do vote their pocketbooks. In essence, the people vote for a Congress who will not raise their taxes, and for a President who will give them free stuff, never mind who has to pay for it.

That suggests the second reason why Romney lost: the inescapable conclusion that, as Winston Churchill stated so tartly, “the best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.” Voters – a clear majority – are easily swayed by emotion and raw populism. Said another way, too many people vote with their hearts and not their heads. That is why Obama did not have to produce a second term agenda, or even defend his first-term record. He needed only to portray Mitt Romney as a rapacious capitalist who throws elderly women over a cliff, when he is not just snatching away their cancer medication, while starving the poor and cutting taxes for the rich. Obama could get away with saying that “Romney wants the rich to play by a different set of rules” – without ever defining what those different rules were; with saying that the “rich should pay their fair share” – without ever defining what a “fair share” is; with saying that Romney wants the poor, elderly and sick to “fend for themselves” – without even acknowledging that all these government programs are going bankrupt, their current insolvency only papered over by deficit spending. How could Obama get away with such rants to squealing sign-wavers? See Churchill, above.

During his 1956 presidential campaign, a woman called out to Adlai Stevenson: “Senator, you have the vote of every thinking person!” Stevenson called back: “That’s not enough, madam, we need a majority!” Truer words were never spoken.

Similarly, Obama (or his surrogates) could hint to blacks that a Romney victory would lead them back into chains and proclaim to women that their abortions and birth control would be taken away. He could appeal to Hispanics that Romney would have them all arrested and shipped to Mexico (even if they came from Cuba or Honduras), and unabashedly state that he will not enforce the current immigration laws. He could espouse the furtherance of the incestuous relationship between governments and unions – in which politicians ply the unions with public money, in exchange for which the unions provide the politicians with votes, in exchange for which the politicians provide more money and the unions provide more votes, etc., even though the money is gone. How could he do and say all these things ? See Churchill, above.

One might reasonably object that not every Obama supporter could be unintelligent. But they must then rationally explain how the Obama agenda can be paid for, aside from racking up multi-trillion dollar deficits. “Taxing the rich” does not yield even 10% of what is required and does not solve any discernible problem – so what is the answer, i.e., an intelligent answer?

Obama also knows that the electorate has changed – that whites will soon be a minority in America (they’re already a minority in California) and that the new immigrants to the US are primarily from the Third World and do not share the traditional American values that attracted immigrants in the 19th and 20th centuries. It is a different world, and a different America. Obama is part of that different America, knows it, and knows how to tap into it. That is why he won.

Obama also proved again that negative advertising works, invective sells, and harsh personal attacks succeed. That Romney never engaged in such diatribes points to his essential goodness as a person; his “negative ads” were simple facts, never personal abuse – facts about high unemployment, lower take-home pay, a loss of American power and prestige abroad, a lack of leadership, etc. As a politician, though, Romney failed because he did not embrace the devil’s bargain of making unsustainable promises, and by talking as the adult and not the adolescent. Obama has spent the last six years campaigning; even his governance has been focused on payoffs to his favored interest groups. The permanent campaign also won again, to the detriment of American life.

It turned out that it was not possible for Romney and Ryan – people of substance, depth and ideas – to compete with the shallow populism and platitudes of their opponents. Obama mastered the politics of envy – of class warfare – never reaching out to Americans as such but to individual groups, and cobbling together a winning majority from these minority groups. Conservative ideas failed to take root and states that seemed winnable, and amenable to traditional American values, have simply disappeared from the map. If an Obama could not be defeated – with his record and his vision of America, in which free stuff seduces voters – it is hard to envision any change in the future. The road to Hillary Clinton in 2016 and to a European-socialist economy – those very economies that are collapsing today in Europe – is paved.

A second cliché that should be retired is that America is a center-right country. It clearly is not. It is a divided country with peculiar voting patterns, and an appetite for free stuff. Studies will invariably show that Republicans in Congress received more total votes than Democrats in Congress, but that means little. The House of Representatives is not truly representative of the country. That people would vote for a Republican Congressmen or Senator and then Obama for President would tend to reinforce point two above: the empty-headedness of the electorate. Americans revile Congress but love their individual Congressmen. Go figure.

The mass media’s complicity in Obama’s re-election cannot be denied. One example suffices. In 2004, CBS News forged a letter in order to imply that President Bush did not fulfill his Air National Guard service during the Vietnam War, all to impugn Bush and impair his re-election prospects. In 2012, President Obama insisted – famously – during the second debate that he had stated all along that the Arab attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi was “terror” (a lie that Romney fumbled and failed to exploit). Yet, CBS News sat on a tape of an interview with Obama in which Obama specifically avoided and rejected the claim of terrorism – on the day after the attack – clinging to the canard about the video. (This snippet of a “60 Minutes” interview was not revealed – until two days ago!) In effect, CBS News fabricated evidence in order to harm a Republican president, and suppressed evidence in order to help a Democratic president. Simply shameful, as was the media’s disregard of any scandal or story that could have jeopardized the Obama re-election.

One of the more irritating aspects of this campaign was its limited focus, odd in light of the billions of dollars spent. Only a few states were contested, a strategy that Romney adopted, and that clearly failed. The Democrat begins any race with a substantial advantage. The liberal states – like the bankrupt California and Illinois – and other states with large concentrations of minority voters as well as an extensive welfare apparatus, like New York, New Jersey and others – give any Democratic candidate an almost insurmountable edge in electoral votes. In New Jersey, for example, it literally does not pay for a conservative to vote. It is not worth the fuel expended driving to the polls. As some economists have pointed generally, and it resonates here even more, the odds are greater that a voter will be killed in a traffic accident on his way to the polls than that his vote will make a difference in the election. It is an irrational act. That most states are uncompetitive means that people are not amenable to new ideas, or new thinking, or even having an open mind. If that does not change, and it is hard to see how it can change, then the die is cast. America is not what it was, and will never be again.

For Jews, mostly assimilated anyway and staunch Democrats, the results demonstrate again that liberalism is their Torah. Almost 70% voted for a president widely perceived by Israelis and most committed Jews as hostile to Israel. They voted to secure Obama’s future at America’s expense and at Israel’s expense – in effect, preferring Obama to Netanyahu by a wide margin. A dangerous time is ahead. Under present circumstances, it is inconceivable that the US will take any aggressive action against Iran and will more likely thwart any Israeli initiative. That Obama’s top aide Valerie Jarrett (i.e., Iranian-born Valerie Jarrett) spent last week in Teheran is not a good sign. The US will preach the importance of negotiations up until the production of the first Iranian nuclear weapon – and then state that the world must learn to live with this new reality. As Obama has committed himself to abolishing America’s nuclear arsenal, it is more likely that that unfortunate circumstance will occur than that he will succeed in obstructing Iran’s plans.

Obama’s victory could weaken Netanyahu’s re-election prospects, because Israelis live with an unreasonable – and somewhat pathetic – fear of American opinion and realize that Obama despises Netanyahu. A Likud defeat – or a diminution of its margin of victory – is more probable now than yesterday. That would not be the worst thing. Netanyahu, in fact, has never distinguished himself by having a strong political or moral backbone, and would be the first to cave to the American pressure to surrender more territory to the enemy and acquiesce to a second (or third, if you count Jordan) Palestinian state. A new US Secretary of State named John Kerry, for example (he of the Jewish father) would not augur well. Netanyahu remains the best of markedly poor alternatives. Thus, the likeliest outcome of the upcoming Israeli elections is a center-left government that will force itself to make more concessions and weaken Israel – an Oslo III.

But this election should be a wake-up call to Jews. There is no permanent empire, nor is there is an enduring haven for Jews anywhere in the exile. The most powerful empires in history all crumbled – from the Greeks and the Romans to the British and the Soviets. None of the collapses were easily foreseen, and yet they were predictable in retrospect.

The American empire began to decline in 2007, and the deterioration has been exacerbated in the last five years. This election only hastens that decline. Society is permeated with sloth, greed, envy and materialistic excess. It has lost its moorings and its moral foundations. The takers outnumber the givers, and that will only increase in years to come. Across the world, America under Bush was feared but not respected. Under Obama, America is neither feared nor respected. Radical Islam has had a banner four years under Obama, and its prospects for future growth look excellent. The “Occupy” riots across this country in the last two years were mere dress rehearsals for what lies ahead – years of unrest sparked by the increasing discontent of the unsuccessful who want to seize the fruits and the bounty of the successful, and do not appreciate the slow pace of redistribution.

Two bright sides: Notwithstanding the election results, I arose this morning, went to shul, davened and learned Torah afterwards. That is our reality, and that trumps all other events. Our relationship with G-d matters more than our relationship with any politician, R or D. And, notwithstanding the problems in Israel, it is time for Jews to go home, to Israel. We have about a decade, perhaps 15 years, to leave with dignity and without stress. Thinking that it will always be because it always was has been a repetitive and deadly Jewish mistake. America was always the land from which “positive” aliya came – Jews leaving on their own, and not fleeing a dire situation. But that can also change. The increased aliya in the last few years is partly attributable to young people fleeing the high cost of Jewish living in America. Those costs will only increase in the coming years. We should draw the appropriate conclusions.

If this election proves one thing, it is that the Old America is gone. And, sad for the world, it is not coming back.

http://rabbipruzansky.com/2012/11/07/the-decline-and-fall-of-the-american-empire/

Rally at Bass Pro Thursday, Nov. 1st

There will be a Sportsmen for Romney/Ryan rally on Thursday Nov 1 from 6-7
pm at the Bass Pro Shops retail store in Harrisburg. Doors will open at 5.

On the card will be Chris Cox from the NRA, Rob Keck, and Tagg Romney.

Please tell your friends via emails and phone calls.

Happy Singing Russian-Chinese-Nazi American Children

Anyone who has seen the Goodby-Silverstein children’s chorus innocently singing away about how electing Romney will result in a destroyed planet, and how those same children already blame their parents, can only be reminded of the past use of children to attack parents in totalitarian societies.

Mao’s China, North Korea, the Soviet Union, and most infamously the Nazis, all used children’s choruses to both brainwash whole generations and also inculcate a loyalty to the big government that superseded family ties. That loyalty to government was used to break familial bonds and reinforce horrendous injustices by those governments.

Commentators have said for years that the Democratic Party had become the heir to both socialism and the totalitarian methods necessary for socialism to succeed. Over the years, I have come to that same conclusion, with some exceptions.

Watching these little children singing about hating their parents for voting for Romney sends chills up my spine. Here it is, right here on our American shores, kids raised in middle and upper income families, sending a message that the people who created and nourished them are Public Enemy Number One. If this is representative of the Democratic Party, then we are in for a true battle for the soul of America.

And piggy backing on that message is today’s Doonesbury (Gary Trudeau) political cartoon, saying that Romney will win by voter suppression, and voter fraud, and that riots will follow. Why this partisan activist continues to get published next to family cartoons is a testament to the mainstream media’s overwhelming political bias. Is there a right-wing equivalent to Doonesbury? No? Do you think that one would ever be published?

But if riots do happen, God forbid, will Liberals suddenly embrace the Second Amendment? Conservatives are generally a well-armed bunch, having spent the past fifty years voting for the Second Amendment both in the voting booth and with their wallets at gun stores. In a physical confrontation, I’d put my money on the gun, not the knife, or Gary Trudeau’s “Doonesbury” pen.

“Leave Everyone Behind”

“Leave everyone behind,” instead of “Bring everyone home” alive or dead, seems to be the reaction of president Obama to last month’s military assault on the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

New emails from the White House, surreptitiously released by someone from within the administration, demonstrate that Barack Hussein Obama knew exactly what he was doing as events were happening real-time in Libya a month ago.

That Obama selected to do nothing, to not answer the distress calls made on official phone lines, to not send ever-ready special forces to intervene, to save American lives, demonstrates that he is a false commander in chief, a coward, and a liar.

Obama lied and lied and then lied some more about what happened in Libya. Turns out, he knew exactly what had happened, and yet he selected to blame it all on a fake movie that was never shown publicly, and blame the First Amendment to the Constitution. Obama sold out his own country. He apologized for our freedom of speech, rather than put the blame on those who deserved it. Obama did not defend his country.

But maybe he doesn’t think of America as his country. He has not answered Donald Trump’s challenge to provide his college transcripts, his visas, his passport request demonstrating that he was a foreign student in college. Obama is the least known, the least vetted of any president, and the mainstream media has done that on purpose. Obama may well have been born in Hawaii, but his upbringing in Indonesia and Kenya created an angry, anti-American activist, who didn’t so much come home to America as he used his mother’s citizenship to gain access to America. The rest is history. Obama is the Manchurian Candidate, except that he actually became president.

Obama still wows crowds. For some reason that I cannot understand, voters look at him and ignore all of the damning, disqualifying facts, and they say they are going to vote for him. Look at the photos of his public appearances. If you told these folks that he was a robot, they’d say “OK, OK,” and continue cheering him on. Got me. Maybe video games have something to do with this state of mind. It’s unfamiliar to me. It is surreal to see a man so damned by his own inactions, his own lies, still retain such credibility with so many citizens. America is in trouble, even if Romney wins. There’s a rot here, folks, deep in the core of our identity. We have to fix it.

Why America Needs a Mormon President

Why America Needs a Mormon President

By Josh First
October 22, 2012

Among many other reasons also pleasing to Americans’ innate sense of fairness, America needs a Mormon president like America needed a Quaker president (Nixon), a Catholic president (Kennedy), and a black president (Obama). Expanding inclusiveness compels Americans to set aside theological differences, drop old bigoted views, accept diversity of faith and opinion, and embrace all the colors in the rainbow. A Mormon candidate for president is the latest color, and he deserves to be judged for his good character as have others before him.

Mormonism is an innately American faith, and perhaps it’s such a quintessential American faith that it may be our most American faith. So it’s rich irony that Mormonism is “new” to so many voting Americans.

Based on Christianity, Mormonism uniquely melds both America’s founding faith and its frontier identity. The frontier experience that created America from the ground up and shapes our most cherished liberties to this very day. Freed men, indentured servants, pioneers, adapting Indian tribes, all who lived the frontier experience contributed to all others living an individual freedom unimaginable in feudal Europe. Throwing off the British yoke unleashed a wave of liberty and creativity only recently checked by the very government grown out of its own founding documents.

Every one of America’s founding documents and rights therein is a product of the frontier, each a distillation of experiences and expectations by those who had come to live beyond the long arm of an unjust law. From “We Hold These Truths Be Self Evident,” to the Third Amendment’s prohibition against quartering soldiers in private homes, and so on, the frontier experience shaped every subsequent generation’s expectations. Even those living in liberal urban enclaves can own a gun for protection, if they so choose.

Enter the Mormons. Very much a distinct and integral part of the larger, defining westward migration that took the American frontier from Upstate New York to the California coast, the early Mormons saw themselves as an extension of the Biblical Jews, whose own frontier experience at Sinai and in its wilderness had rendered a code of life similar to the U.S. Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights.

Reaching their own ‘promised land’ in their own de facto colony, the early Mormons established independence in what is today Utah. Yes, polygamy in Western Civilization was last practiced hundreds of years ago, and it is odd to see people doing it today. Happily, polygamous Mormons are a minority. Overall, and most important, Mormons are a happy, friendly, law-abiding, quietly spoken, hard working, patriotic, tax-paying bunch. They are people we’d like as neighbors. Have you met a mean spirited, unpleasant Mormon? Neither have I.

In 1908, the famous author Zane Grey was so powerfully impressed by “Emmet,” a Western hunting guide, that he wrote often about him in his Field & Stream magazine stories. His first description verged on Biblical: “Emmet was a Mormon, a massively built gray-bearded son of the desert; he had lived his life on it; he had conquered it and in his falcon eyes shone all its fire and freedom.” That Mormons are emblematic of American liberty is not a new idea, and hopefully this 2012 election will re-introduce it powerfully.

Several years ago, I climbed on board a helicopter for a real estate project, and met two kindly older men. They worked for the Mormon church, and were buying farmland. Turns out, the Mormons own a lot of farmland, on which they grow corn, wheat, barley, and other grains. They also own factories that manufacture those grains into food. They also own planes, trains, trucking companies, ships, logistics and distribution centers that, literally vertically integrated from the ground up, freely and cheerfully give that food away to hungry people of all faiths across the planet. If you ask me, this is a good religion; it is a positive force. It gets my deepest respect and appreciation.

Mitt Romney is a bit too nice. He sometimes lacks that overt fire and passion that leaders typically use to inspire. Frustratingly, he has changed some political positions to suit political exigencies. But right beneath his smiling demeanor is a son of the American desert, a son of the American frontier, a true son of America. We really need that noble character right now, as we return back to our roots and to the basic elements that make America great, and as we move away from being ‘transformed’ into something unrecognizable and perpetually broke.

Tonight is the last of the presidential debates of what is the most defining, most important presidential election of my lifetime. Afterwards, for the next two weeks Mitt will be on the campaign trail. Join him, if you can. Please lend a hand one way or another. Go door-to-door with literature, make phone calls to voters, donate ten bucks, or talk to your family and friends about the kind of political change we can believe in and that we need. Our nation’s future depends upon it.

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Surprisingly, to Me Anyhow, Romney Wins Round One

Mitt Romney is a heck of a nice guy, a good guy, an accomplished guy.

He has more competence in his pinky than Barack Hussein Obama has in his whole body. He is genuinely friendly.

But Romney is not known for being a toe-to-toe fighter, a brawler, or a passionate advocate for core American principles.

But last night, enough of all those attributes aligned for long enough for Romney to clearly outshine Obama in the first presidential debate.

Obama was petulant, smirking, arrogant, and glaring. He seemed bored, and above it all; all he needed to do was check his watch (George Bush Sr., 1992), or sigh dramatically (Al Gore, 2000), and he would have fully conveyed his displeasure at being at a debate, defending his policies.

Obama was anything but presidential.

At a rally today, Obama was heard on the radio saying that the Romney at last night’s debate was not the same Romney that Obama has been describing in his attack ads, including the one that Obama himself backtracked from because it was an outright lie.

Why didn’t Obama say that to Romney last night? Is he afraid to actually debate him?

Those who watch Obama’s personality and analyze his background would not be surprised if Obama is actually physically afraid of Romney. One of the most telling photos of any president was the one taken in the White House war room, as the Bin Laden raid unfolded. Obama is seen cowering, obviously afraid. The man simply lacks courage.

Those who know my political beliefs know that I was not a big Romney supporter. Without rehashing them now, suffice it to say that his strong points can also be his weakest points.

Last night, however, Romney gave me cause to open my wallet and make a donation to his campaign, something I had been reluctant to do after the anti-conservative Rule 15 fight on the RNC floor.

Mitt, you earned my support.

Revealing, isn’t it…

Isn’t it revealing that Barack Hussein Obama’s birth certificate was kept under wraps for years, and his college transcripts (showing his foreign student status) are still bolted down in a Fort Knox -type location, but he is still demanding Romney’s tax documents? Oh, the irony.

Rule 15 Fight at Convention

Three Romney mailers arrived over past two months, asking me for money.
Sure, I said.
Then came the Rule 15 fight at the convention. Establishment wants us hard working conservatives to move the party ball forward, but then they strip away our influence.
Good luck, guys!