Posts Tagged ‘2008 Elections’

On the Election

I don’t have much to say about the way Tuesday’s election panned out besides this:
Sometimes God blesses us by giving us the leadership we want, and sometimes God judges us by giving us the leadership we want.

Blue States for Baldwin

The 2008 Presidential campaign has only one more day before we head to the polls. Given the short timing and the fact that justavapor.com isn’t exactly the go-to site for political information for the whole country, I doubt this post will have a great impact, but I’ll pretend it will.

I don’t think I have too many Obama supporters read my blog regularly, so this one is directed to the McCain supporters. We all know how McCain’s rhetoric has changed in the last few months. He has been one of the most liberal Republicans in the Senate for several terms. He has his name attached to far too many liberal bills. During the primaries, countless well-known conservatives swore they couldn’t pull the lever for McCain. However, in the last few months tunes have changed drastically. You’d think that McCain was running for Reagan’s 3rd term the way some people talk.

We all know he’ll go right back to being the guy who stabs Conservatives in the back and runs with glee to the media by Wednesday morning. Nevertheless, there are tons of “conservatives” who will argue that we all have to vote for him because Obama is going to destroy this country.

Let me propose something to you. If you are one of those people, and you live in a state that is certain to go to Obama anyway, would you please reconsider your vote? I live in Minnesota, and unless Obama comes out and says that he thinks Hitler was a great man, he’s going to win in my state. The last Republican to win Minnesota was Richard Nixon in 1972. It was the only state that went Mondale in 1984 (I think only because he’s from Minnesota). If you live in Minnesota, or any other thoroughly blue state, put aside your fears of “wasting your vote”. In reality, a vote for McCain in one of these states is a truly wasted vote, he can’t win any more than Bob Barr or Chuck Baldwin can win. So stand up for Conservative values on Tuesday and vote for a real conservative. Send the Republicans the message that what conservatives want from their party is conservative candidates.

Personally, I’d vote for Chuck Baldwin no matter what state I lived in. However, for the sake of this post, I don’t want to argue with those of you living in “battleground” states. Go ahead and vote McCain if you live in one of those states. He’ll be slightly less of a terrible president than Obama would be, and Republicans will get the message that continuing the move to the left is a good strategy, but at least Obama won’t be President.

If you live in a state that McCain has sewn up, toss a coin. Vote for McCain so Obama doesn’t score an upset in your state, or vote Baldwin with the assurance that your vote won’t cost McCain your state in the end. I would never vote that way myself, as I believe that a candidate must earn my vote by his own merit, rather than being the anti-Democrat, but that isn’t the point of this post.

Please, if you live in a state Obama has in the bag, vote Bob Barr or Chuck Baldwin. Help move this country back to the right!

Scary! But…

… it looks to me like the loony-leftists over at Saturday Night Live actually understand the coming election better than 95% of the media – on both sides of the political spectrum.

The RNC

I didn’t pay a lot of attention this week. A little talk on the radio driving to and from work. I did watch the speeches by Palin and McCain, and heard a little of the earlier speeches by Leiberman, Romney, and Giuliani – though not much.

After the learning process earlier this year, getting elected an alternate to my BPOU convention, and from there a delegate to my Congressional district and State conventions, I quit paying much attention. The Congressional district convention was kind of fun, overall I would say I enjoyed it. The State convention, however, happened in May, when the only candidates left in the running were McCain and Paul. The state chairman, Ron Carey, did everything he could to turn it into a referendum on McCain. It also struck me as much less a serious event and much more akin to a high school pep rally.

That’s exactly what I thought of the National convention, at least what little I saw of it. Then again, I didn’t pay any attention to the “business” that is supposed to go on at conventions, such as resolutions to make changes to the party platform. I don’t see those as in any way meaningful though. It’s one thing to have a party platform that the base can be happy with, it’s another thing altogether to enforce the platform and require candidates to adhere to it in exchange for the party’s nomination.

While I haven’t changed my mind on my vote (I absolutely will not vote for McCain in November), I have liked what I’ve seen of Palin. She seems to have done a great job running a family, and has done some impressive things in Alaska. She is also quite good at giving a speech. However, I refuse to fall into the same trap so many Obamaphiles have fallen into by assuming that giving a good speech is equivalent to governing well. That takes experience and a track record, which Palin doesn’t have a lot of.

At this current time (with what little I know of her), Palin appears to be an excellent pick for McCain as a running-mate. She has done wonders to appease the Conservative base, otherwise none-too-happy that McCain in the Republican nominee. She has taken away the “history-making” factor that the Obama campaign was counting on – regardless of who wins now there will be a “first,” be it the first black President or the first woman Vice-President. I am certain she will draw in a lot of women to vote Republican, including many disgruntled Hillary supporters who have sworn not to vote for Obama.

That won’t be enough to win my vote though. What does the Vice-President really do anyway? She’d break a tie in the Senate, but how often is that going to really matter when it comes down to brass tacks? McCain has been peddling his military service as a reason to vote for him. There are a lot of great heros that have served selflessly in the military on both sides of the political divide, that doesn’t mean I want them governing the country. McCain is also trumpeting his experience in the Senate working with Democrats. He must forget that that is exactly why so many Conservatives are upset that he is the nominee. I’m not interested in compromising with Democrats, I’m interested in defeating them. The Democrats are always moving further to the left; increasing government and decreasing liberty (with the sole exception that they wish to increase a woman’s liberty to murder her child). Compromising with them only means we move to the left a little slower than we would if they got their way.

It will be interesting to see what happens in November. I don’t like either candidate, and will be voting Constitution Party again. I expect the following to happen regardless of who wins the White House in November:

  • American sovereignty will continue to be eroded
  • Illegal immigration will continue as usual
  • Abortion will continue as usual
  • The Federal Reserve will continue its fraudulent existence
  • The military will continue to be spread around the globe in unnecessary conflicts (the difference between the two will just be a matter of where of where or why)
  • Taxes will remain confiscatory (maybe slightly less with McCain, but then slightly less strychnine will still kill you)
  • Free speech will still be a thing of the past
  • Neither candidate is likely to restore any measure of lost 2nd amendment rights
  • Both will force us into economy-killing solutions to the non-existent problem of “global climate change”
  • Both will try to reform health care in ways that will only cause more problems

In other words, both candidates are bad for the country, one is just arguably worse than the other. So I go back to what I’ve said every election since I began paying attention: voting for the lesser of two evils is still a vote for evil. What’s worse, it makes evil the standard. I’m frankly tired of candidates who’s list of negatives is longer than their list of positives. I’m not interested in who’s list of negatives is longer than the other guy’s, I’m interested in who’s positives are longer than his own negatives. We haven’t seen that candidate win a major party’s nomination in decades.

Insignificant Differences

Since I left the Minnesota State Republican Convention in May, I have paid less attention to the current political race than I did before. There just isn’t enough of a difference between the candidates to get me excited. Ron Paul is gone, and he was the only candidate that showed any promise for real change. The candidates in the race today that offer real change are not in either faction of the major political party.

Case in point, on just a few issues, I came across < a href="http://www.thenewamerican.com/node/8603">this article, which does a decent job of showing just how little difference there is between the two candidates running in the main party:

Environment

Obama: Supports “implementation of a market-based cap-and-trade system to reduce carbon emissions by the amount scientists say is necessary: 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.”

McCain: Proposes “a cap-and-trade system that would set limits on greenhouse gas emissions while encouraging the development of low-cost compliance options” which would return emissions in 2050 to 60 percent below 1990 levels.

Hot air: Both proposals accept as gospel truth the politically-correct orthodoxy of anthropomorphic (manmade) global warming. In point of fact, there is little scientific evidence that global climate change, including recent warming temperatures, have anything to do with human activity. The anti-industrial bias of radical environmentalism has much more to do with the global-warming hysteria than sound science. Yet both candidates have accepted the need to reduce industrial emissions to combat this alleged menace. If emissions must be regulated, then state and local governments are more than adequate to the task and, unlike the federal government, are not necessarily constitutionally barred from doing so.

Mortgage Crisis

Obama: Will “create a fund to help people refinance their mortgages and provide comprehensive supports to innocent homeowners.”

McCain: “Under his HOME Plan, every deserving American family or homeowner will be afforded the opportunity to trade a burdensome mortgage for a manageable loan that reflects their home’s market value.”

Mortgaging the future: The federal government has no constitutional mandate to subsidize housing purchases, and its decades of meddling in the mortgage industry have seriously distorted the workings of the free market. More regulation, such as both Obama and McCain are proposing, will only exacerbate the problem.

Soaring College Costs

Obama: “Obama will make college affordable for all Americans by creating a new American Opportunity Tax Credit. This universal and fully refundable credit will ensure that the first $4,000 of a college education is completely free for most Americans, and will cover two-thirds the cost of tuition at the average public college or university and make community college tuition completely free for most students.” Obama also advocates streamlining the process of applying for federal college aid.

McCain: “John McCain is proposing a student loan continuity plan. Students face the possibility that the credit crunch will disrupt loans for the fall semester. John McCain calls on the federal government and the 50 governors to anticipate loan problems and expand the lender-of-last resort capabilities for each state’s guarantee agency.”

School daze: Subsidized student loans drive education costs far beyond what the market would otherwise support. Oh, and by the way: fedgov student loans aren’t authorized anywhere in the U.S. Constitution. Yet both candidates are happy to continue federal subsidies of college education in one form or another.

Healthcare

Obama: Will create a new national health plan for all Americans, which will include guaranteed eligibility and comprehensive benefits. Also wants to create a National Health Insurance Exchange, which will help Americans shop for health insurance and impose new regulations on the industry. Health insurance for children will be mandatory, and Medicaid will be expanded, among many other ambitious proposals.

McCain: Wants to work with states to develop a “Guaranteed Access Plan (GAP)” that will provide health insurance for the uninsured, and to “reform the payment systems in Medicaid and Medicare.” McCain also wants the federal government to promote easier access to healthcare, smoker cessation programs, the “rapid deployment of 21st century information systems and technology,” and “the establishment of national standards for measuring and recording treatment and outcomes.”

Bad medicine: Ballooning healthcare costs have coincided with federal involvement in the healthcare industry, which has brought us socialized medicine in everything but name. Nevertheless, both Obama and McCain, following the lead of “Hillary Care” a decade ago, both want to use the federal government to “reform” American healthcare. Believe it or not, free markets once upon a time provided affordable healthcare and insurance for most Americans, and would do so again if the Federal Government got out of the healthcare business altogether.  And did we mention that federal meddling in healthcare is unconstitutional?

Trade

Obama: While pledging to oppose the Central American Trade Agreement, Obama wants to “pressure the World Trade Organization to enforce trade agreements and stop countries from continuing unfair government subsidies to foreign exporters and nontariff barriers on U.S. exports.” Moreover, “Obama will work with the leaders of Canada and Mexico to fix NAFTA so that it works for American workers.”

McCain: “Ninety-five percent of the world’s customers lie outside our borders and we need to be at the table when the rules for access to those markets are written. To do so, the U.S. should engage in multilateral, regional and bilateral efforts to reduce barriers to trade, level the global playing field and build effective enforcement of global trading rules.”

Trading away our independence: What about getting out of sovereignty-sapping trade agreements like NAFTA and the WTO altogether? Neither candidate wants to do that, and no candidate with such a proposal would be allowed anywhere near the White House. Yet in the past decade, the World Trade Organization has become a global trade ministry, and even threatened the Bush administration with sanctions a few years ago over a policy dispute with the EU. Such international and regional trade agreements, as the European experience with the Common Market-turned-European Union has shown, are intended as economic precursors to full-fledged transnational government.

A truly independent United States of America would have nothing to do with NAFTA, CAFTA, the WTO, or any of the other entities that enforce “global trading rules.” The only alternative consistent with American independence is complete withdrawal from all of these organizations.

Foreign Policy

Obama: Favors complete withdrawal of all combat troops from Iraq within 16 months. Wants to strengthen NATO, to “rally NATO members to contribute troops to collective security operations, urging them to invest more in reconstruction and stabilization operations, streamlining the decision-making processes, and giving NATO commanders in the field more flexibility.” Not a word to say about the United Nations or our continued membership in the world body.

McCain: Favors a stronger military better equipped to fight “21st century wars,” as well as a national missile defense shield. No mention of our membership in NATO or the United Nations.

Entanglements: Neither candidate would ever consider withdrawing from NATO, the United Nations, and other “entangling alliances” that drag us into regional conflicts where we have no business getting involved. The best thing we can do for our troops is to bring them home, where they can defend America’s borders rather than those of South Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, or dozens of other countries whose defense is not our responsibility. And while we’re at it, Get US out of the UN, permanently!

Inflation and the Economic Downturn

Obama: Would provide additional tax rebates to Americans. Obama’s platform takes note of rising prices but suggests nothing to address the problem. Again, the Federal Reserve System is left unmentioned.

McCain: Wants to provide unspecified help to “Americans hurting from high food and gas costs.” He will “act immediately to reduce the pain of high gas prices.” Oh, and he’ll also “end policies that contribute to higher transportation and food costs,” such as the ethanol subsidy and sugar quotas. No mention of the Federal Reserve System or its role in creating inflation.

Funny money: Any candidate serious about returning the American economy to a sound footing would insist on phasing out the Federal Reserve System, whose unbacked paper money has been responsible for rising prices decade after decade. Neither Obama nor McCain would touch such a proposal with a 10-foot pole, however. Nor would either candidate do anything to reestablish the bimetallic (silver and gold) system of currency that our forefathers enjoyed, or to confine the federal government to its constitutional role of “coining” (not printing) money. Tax rebates and tinkering with commodity subsidies are like using bandages to treat a malignant tumor.

Why is it that when candidates have minor differences, the almost always share a socialist/unconstitutional view? In my lifetime, I have never seen two candidates argue about who was going to cut more government programs, or take a stricter interpretation of the Constitution. It just doesn’t happen. Occasionally they promise to nominate justices to the Supreme Court who will take a stricter view of the Constitution, but they seem to do so with the comfort of knowing that it takes five justices on the court to hand down a ruling. The Democrat always promises to fleece the “haves” more and give more to the “have-nots.” The Republican tends to promise to fleece the “haves” less (though he says, implicitly or explicitly, that he still intends to fleece them), while still giving as much as possible to the “have-nots.”

Since the last nail was driven into the coffin of Ron Paul’s Presidential campaign, I have determined to shift my allegiance back to where it normally is in this stage of a Presidential race, the Constitution Party. I haven’t yet had time to really get to know who Chuck Baldwin, their candidate, is – but if his articles at the Christian Worldview Network are any indication, I will have a very clear conscience giving him my vote in November.

It grieves me greatly to watch my country deteriorate into socialist tyranny. The pilgrims came over and settled in the New World to better have the opportunity to live and preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Individual liberty, personal responsibility, and minimal government are what made this country first into the envy of the world, and then into a superpower. A disregard for those principles is sadly what will be it’s ultimate demise.

But where to liberty-minded individuals go to escape? The United States gets away with tyranny because it is still just a little bit more free than everyone else.

Death of a Party: More on the Convention

It’s been a little over a week since the convention in Rochester. I wanted to share some of the stories others were sharing in response:

Post-Convention Reflections

Yesterday I got home from the State Republican convention in Rochester. I decided not to stick around for the activities going on yesterday, which I understand to mostly have been speeches. I really only attended Friday, when all of the important business took place.

Friday began with an early morning speech by Ron Paul. As I had said in my previous post, Dr. Paul was not allowed to speak at the convention, so he was relegated to an outdoor stage in a park behind the convention center. Fortunately, though rain was expected, it didn’t come until after the speech was over.

Ron Paul speech

Read the rest of this entry »

State Convention Tomorrow

Today I left work early and made my way to Rochester for the Minnesota State Republican Convention. There are some activities going on this evening, but I’m not certain exactly what yet. The bulk of the convention will begin tomorrow morning.

It promises to be a very contentious convention. The Ron Paul campaing and supporters were very effective at getting their people elected to National Delegate and Alternate positions during the first round of Congressional District conventions back in early April. However, the party elites quickly wised up to what was going on, and have been throwing up all possible roadblocks. They have also been very hostile to Ron Paul supporters, and even Ron Paul himself. Paul will be in town tomorrow morning to speak, but he was not invited to speak at the convention, he will be speaking in the park next to the convention center before the convention starts. They wonder why Ron Paul’s supporters are so adversed to supporting their beloved candidate, presumptive nominee Juan McCain*. Ron Paul is still an active candidate for the Republican Nomination for President, and to snub him when he is in town by excluding him from the convention (be it directly or indirectly) is a sign of such utter disrespect, which I find quite appalling. It has nothing to do with my support of Ron Paul either; if Sam Brownback or Tom Tancredo (who together never received the support that Ron Paul has received) were still in the race and were in town during the convention, I would expect them to be invited to participate. Of course it gets even worse, not only was Ron Paul snubbed, he was told by Ron Carey, Minnesota Republican King-maker, that the only way he would be allowed to speak at the convention is if he withdrew from the race and pledged his support to Juan McCain. What a slap in the face! Minnesota has less than 2% of the votes in the Electoral College, and even a smaller percentage of the total delegates in the National Republican Party. Clearly he didn’t think that Ron Paul would cater to such a demand simply to be allowed to speak to 2000 people! Ron Carey is an incredibly arrogant @$$hole (excuse my language).

Aside from voting for Ron Paul delegates and alternates to the National convention, I may not participate too heavily this weekend in the convention while I’m there. Most of what goes on at these events is changes and amendments to the party platform. This is a process that has no other purpose than to pacify the delegates and make them feel as though they are actually doing something that matters, when in reality it doesn’t matter a hill of beans. I find the whole process to be a bit of a joke. There are many changes made with little discussion and near unanimous support. There are other changes that raise heated discussion and can come close to almost physical violence. But in the end, what is the value of a platform at all when the candidates, both elected to office and seeking office, are free to disregard the platform completely? All they have to do to get the (R) by their name is kiss the right butts. I personally have some disagreements with the Republican Party platform, both at the state and national levels. However, I would be happy to vote for a Republican who stuck exactly to the platform when it comes to actual policy making. Even where my opinion differs from the platform, at least I know what those differences are and can rest comfortably in knowing I won’t be blind-sided and betrayed at some time in the future, which is fast becoming the rule rather than the exception these days.

I am in Rochester this weekend for two reasons. The first is that I was elected by the people in my BPOU to be here and to represent them as a staunch Conservative who favors small and limited government. I owe it to those who voted for me to go. The second reason I am here is that I am so impressed by the way that Ron Paul has served in Congress over ten terms that I am happy to give him as much support as I can in his bid for the Presidency, even if he is mathematically out of the race. I agree with his message and I want to do what I can to give him as much of a platform to keep spreading it as I am capable of giving him. Beyond that, my obligation to the voters of my BPOU ends on Saturday morning, and with that my participation in the Republican Party ends as well – unless and until they move back to the Right and restore their allegiance to their own platform. I certainly won’t be granting any support to the Minnesota Republican party so long as Ron Carey is in charge, and the party keeps putting up watered-down Democrats like Tim Pawlenty (Governor), Norm Coleman (Senator) and Juan McCain.

*I will be referring to Mr. McCain as “Juan” from now on, as he seems to be more interested in catering to the Hispanic illegal immigrant community than law-abiding, tax paying American citizens.

More on Ron Paul in Minnesota

Since Saturday, a lot is coming out about the other two Conventions in Minnesota, the 4th District and the 6th District. It seems there were a lot of hijinks going on, especially in 6.

The Party Elites in that district figured out that Ron Paul’s supporters were organizing and intending to get National delegates. Nothing is wrong with organizing to support each other, and nothing is wrong with countering an organization. However, the 6th district nominating committee tried to control the process, rather than leaving things to the people. The candidates for Delegate and Alternate were asked directly “Will you support John McCain if elected Delegate/Alternate?” This is a bit slanted and clearly meant to intimidate. Had they asked much more plainly “Who do you support to become the Republican Candidate for President?” they could have avoided the appearance of bias.

At least one of the delegates said he would support McCain. When it was found out that he intends to support Paul, chaos ensued. After more than an hour, the convention voted by a slim margin to bind the Delegates to support McCain. There is some question over whether the State GOP rules allow that though.

It appears to me that there are a lot of people that are upset that their own lack of effort resulted in delegates getting elected for a candidate they don’t like. Boo-freaking-hoo! At our convention, a few politicians came and spoke: Governor Pawlenty, Senator Colman, state party chairman Ron Carey, and Congressional candidate Barb Davis White. I forget who, but I think it was Carey that said that the winners are the ones that show up. Well, Ron Paul’s people showed up. We got our delegates elected because a lot of non-Paul delegates didn’t show up, so our Alternates took their seats. If they didn’t want Paul to do well, they should have showed up.

To be fair, the 5th District Convention was conducted very fairly, at least from what I saw. I did read one account that said that the nominating committee tried to stifle Ron Paul delegates from getting on the ballot. However, I also read another that suggests it was completely fair. Frankly, I saw nothing to suggest that it was in any way unfair. All three candidates for each race (Delegate and Alternate) were given a shot, and 5 of the 6 won. The 6th, I had heard, was very close (had he not gone into a rant bashing each of the other candidates, he would have probably won too).

It will be interesting to see what happens at State at the end of May. Paul did very well in the three conventions that happened this weekend, winning somewhere between 6 and 8 delegates when the Party Elites and the Media figured he’d get none. If the State convention is conducted honestly, we could pick up more delegates there too, there are 8 available.

If only the anti-Paulites would recognize that it isn’t in their best interest to marginalize us. They need our votes bad in November, and though they are unlikely to get many of them, they won’t get any if they continue to show such utter disrespect for us. I for one have no problem with McCain losing in November. GW Bush was too Liberal to get my vote in 2000 or 2004, but I’d much rather see Presidential term limits eliminated and give him two more terms than see McCain as President.

Boo Yah!! – Delegate Update #3

I just got home from the Minnesota Republican 5th Congressional District Convention, and I am excited!

We elected 3 delegates and 2 alternates to the National Convention. (We had three alternates available, but the third spot wasn’t available to be filled according to the rules*.) I am so excited to report that ALL OF THEM are Ron Paul supporters!!!

According to the straw poll taken at the precinct caucuses on Feb. 5, Ron Paul was credited with zero delegates from Minnesota, and now he has a guaranteed three from my district alone.

What’s amusing is that the Elites at this level hand-picked their three favorites for each position, including the Candidate for Congress in the last go-around. None of them got elected. It just goes to show that a well organized grass-roots movement can actually win battles. I am proud to be a part of it.

Cudos to the Ron Paul campaign for continuing their work and working out who would run for delegate and alternate, and informing the rest of us who those people were.

*The rules stated that no one could be elected unless they received a majority of votes (< 50%). Any open seat that didn't achieve a majority vote would have to have a re-vote. The rules also stated that the convention had to adjourn by 4:00 p.m., and the vote tally for the election of alternates didn't come in until 4:10 or so, leaving no time to re-vote to elect the remaining alternate.