Tag Archives: Elections

Why I’m Voting for President Obama

I’m voting for President Obama because I trust him to do the right thing, and even on the issues where we don’t agree I know that he will make his choices based on principles and what he sees as best for our country as a whole rather than based on political expediency or the dictates of narrow interests. I have confidence in him as President and I know that he’s principled because I’ve watched him in action first as a candidate and then as our president for five years now.

When this started out I was not a Barack Obama fan – instead I was one of the many here at this site writing posts against him and campaigning for his opponents (that included Clinton, Guiliani, Romney, and McCain at various points as the long primary season wound into the national election). I was against him as president and was pretty firmly seated in the “anyone but Obama” camp because I still believed all the far right bumper stickers about him, and even took part in some of the attempts to slime him with Reverend Wright and other things.

Even after he was elected I was still heavily criticizing him regarding jobs and the economy all the way into 2010, but over time he slowly turned all of those negatives around. He demonstrated his leadership time and again, and took a lot of heat not only from the right, but also from many of the progressives in his own party to work through issues with a highly recalcitrant Congress. Under his guidance I watched as multiple branches of our Federal Government became more open, more effective, and more efficient.

At the same time I watched the right become bitter and hardened, witch hunting not only our new president but also anyone in their own party who didn’t kow-tow to their hard right litany at every other step. The cracked pots were let in the back door, and I ran out the front, at first to become an independent, and then a year later a registered Democrat.

Meanwhile, President Obama took the fight directly to the specific terrorist organizations who were attacking us and destabilizing the subcontinent of Asia and the Middle East. He quickly got results, using a combination of drone warfare, sanctions, agreements and diplomacy to further US interests and missions.

He didn’t care if the terrorists were hiding in Yemen and Pakistan and being sheltered by factions of those country’s military. He went after them anyway, just as he had promised in his campaign; he took out leader after leader until we got Osama Bin Laden hiding in Abottobad, Pakistan. Both Romney and McCain had roundly criticized him for saying he would go into Pakistan during the campaign, but he persisted until justice was done.

I’ve watched our President in action, turning the country around, doing what was required to save the auto industry, putting the country back to work with construction projects across the nation when we needed it most, and I’ve seen him persevere while the rabid right did everything in their power to cause him and our country to fail. I’ve seen him smile and still try to deal with Republican congressmen even as one of them called him a liar during an address to a joint session of Congress.

That joint session was for his landmark health care initiative, and I’m glad it passed. Now all of my nieces and nephews have a chance to stay on their parents health insurance as they go into those starter jobs. Now my pacemaker isn’t a pre-existing condition hurdle to changing insurance if I want to.

It’s now five years later, and I’m a big supporterIt was that kind of bile and the over the top charges like “Death panels” at that joint session and Barack’s persistent work against our real foes overseas that made me reconsider the propaganda I’d been fed, and made me dig deeper into the issues. At most junctures I found myself deciding that our president was right, and his opponents were absolutely crazed, as I dug into the facts of each issue.

I found that we agree on most issues regarding climate, social issues like gay marriage, and women’s rights. I fully support the regulations on Wall Street — we can’t afford vulture and wild West capitalism of the sort his opponent wants.

I honestly don’t think there is anyone out there who can do a better job as President for the next four years. Instead, I firmly believe that putting anyone else into office would seriously jeopardize the slow but steady recovery that we are in.

That’s why our President, Barack Obama, not only has my complete confidence and trust as president, but also my vote for the next four years.

60

60

The NRSC has launched a new Youtube ad, 60, which highlights the power the Democrats control now and how the Republican hopes of the balance voters effects coming into heavy play in the 2010 elections. With Campaign kitties low and donations to the actual party thin, expect the Republicans to focus mostly on the Senate in the coming election. The demographics of balance in the Senate are much easier to achieve for the diminishing minority party than a large comeback in the house.

Expect spirited house battles, but also expect that they will recruit self starters there who can go it mostly alone. Who knows, there could be a budding Gingrich out there somewhere.

Republicans Need New Strategy II: The Shores of Desolation

Republicans Need New Strategy II: The Shores of Desolation

tidal-flatsIt’s 256-178 against Republicans in the House of Representatives and it’s 59-41 in the Senate, our President is Democrat and likely to get two or more Supreme Court appointments during his coming term or terms. The most populous states in the country are solidly in the (D) column, and our last holdout states are being worked on by the Dems as I type (Pelosi was in Texas yesterday, and many prominent Dems are making regular sweeps – it’s the next populous red state they are working on converting to a grape.) That’s our reality and what we must deal with.

Our tide has receded and we stand amidst wrack and drying foam upon a desolate shore. What’s next for us? Will we starve and shrink, or can we somehow pull that tide back?

To do so takes a long term, mid term, and short term strategies based on reality. Neither strategies based on what’s happening in the news cycle at the moment, nor strategies based on worries and wishes will work.

There’s been lots of coulda, shoulda, woulda analysis of the past election but one thing is very clear – many of our pundits and strategists are now betting the farm on a four and out failure scenario and the conventional wisdom that the party out of power gains in mid term elections. While balancing will come into play, we can’t count on that alone in 2010.

I’m one of those nutty guys who likes to plan for worst case and be happily surprised and cheer like a madman if anything better does occur. You won’t see me thinking Obama’s going to shoot both of his feet off, and you won’t see me planning how to win last election, or thinking that we will still be in recession in four years. Capitalism is stronger that that, no matter what the Dems do – it’s a primal force of human nature that can’t be overcome. Even in Communist China and the old Soviet Union it can’t be overcome. Preparing for the last war you had instead of the war that’s coming is a classic military blunder and the outcome of that can be even worse in the political arena.

First let’s look at short term: what we can do until election 2010 and the levers we have available.

With the Democrat super-majority we do not have a lot of options. To ameliorate bad legislation our levers amount to these:

  • Blocking in committee and using procedural rules where we can based on specific reasoned points that create political opportunities. Easy grandstanding populist issues should be eschewed as the general public will see through these with the ever present aid of the adversarial press
  • Influencing moderate and right democrats on specific regional issues: pair off teams of Republican legislators from their region with Democrats who are on the bubble or at risk in conservative to moderate states. This will not work if the R’s are branded RINO and beset by the nihilistic far right of our party.
  • Influencing through public campaigns and the Democrat’s constituency – target the Democrat Congress critter’s base with the agitprop, not the Republican base or the already converted in his area. This means retooling some of the bumper stickers to appeal more to the left not to the right. The red meat we use against them must be cooked to their liking, not ours if they are to swallow it.
  • Working through the courts to challenge unconstitutional segments of new legislation. The opportunities here are plentiful, each new session of congress seems less capable of writing legislation that will stand up in court. e.g. a few Property rights and Free Speech cases in the West could get us a lot of mileage.
  • Working at State level to supercede and challenge that which is truly unconstitutional – doing this for social issues gets us the FAIL, doing it for gun rights, sound fiscal policy, property rights, and individual liberties gets us the win, because if we don’t pull back the West and some of the North east we become the permanent superminority. Becoming the new Dixiecrat party is not only antithetical to our founding (our first platform was “Free State Kansas”,) but it will also ensure that we become irrelevant at national level for the next decade.

These are levers we can pull – but they are near term tactics, not a strategy. To get to a workable strategy we have to know the terrain and we can worry about the local weather after we figure out where the hills and valleys are.

To do that I propose that the Republican party commission an objective third party firm to conduct a neutral survey. Not a push survey set up to highlight Republican issues like you get every election. (You know the one I’m talking about: it begs for money after trying to push your hot-buttons with a supposed survey.) Make some of the questions on the survey open: don’t give multiple choice selections instead ask openly without prompting what their top three issues are and allow them to hand write or voice their answer.

This survey needs to be of the general public and it needs to be set up not to elicit push or pull responses but rather to survey true beliefs and positions.

We need to also poll our own base with the same survey. We don’t need a Frank Luntz or Dick Morris type involved in this, we need a double blind uninvolved and objective third party firm that’s not tied to a party, think tank, or news agency. Neutral and objective must be our watchwords for this.

Why do we need it? There have been some amazing shifts in demographics the past fifteen years, and the traditional base of what constitutes a Republican has changed, and America has changed as well. With that change in terrain we are fighting on new ground. We need a real assessment. When that comes back we must take off our blinders, blinkers, and rose colored glasses.

First step is to match up areas of agreement between our base and the general public. Those are our strengths so we must make some of those our lead issues, and if they are our strongest cards  then we must base strategy upon them.

Second we must look at areas where we are in major disagreement with the general public. Those are the important stumbling blocks, those are the issues the Dems will make grape states with.

Pundits: Don’t assume you know this already. You might have an inkling, but don’t project your wishes on the results. When and if the returns come back read the sections that make you weep, take a look in the mirror and do some soul searching – don’t make up conspiracy theories to justify the difference, don’t what- if the results. Instead take it, absorb it, sleep on it, and then think on it some more before you come to conclusions.

While you are waiting on that survey that might never happen, please pick up this book, and look at some of the factors over the last few decades that defy conventional wisdom and punditry on elections. Red State Blue State, Rich State, Poor State contains a lot of charts and graphs based on empirical reality. It tries to be neutral, but the left loves it because it underlines their class warfare line that the Republican party is the party of the rich.

It turns out that Rich people vote Republican more often, and Poor people vote Democrat more often. Nothing earth shattering there, you could say the authors are being masters of the obvious. However the big paradigm shift you have to pay attention to is this: Poor states vote Republican, Rich States vote Democrat.  You can hypothesize about that if you like, but the conclusion I’ve come to is that populous states have larger middle and upper classes. What must we do to get them back?

To me the answer is not Populism as that appeals to the poor states already in the Republican column and not necessarily the middle and upper classes in more populous urban states.

If we can’t win populous states we can’t be a national party. Think on it please.

Update: The Sensuous Curmudgeon has an Open Letter to the Party that’s well worth reading here.

The next installment in this series will map mid-game and long term strategies: Where is the Republican party going to head for the rest of the century? Is it a positive appealing direction?

Bill Ayers Weather Underground: NOT Just Anti-War

Bill Ayers 2001 While Still Serving With Obama on Woods Fund Board

In the wake of the Barack Obama association with Bill Ayers and friends, Zombie pointed out something that many people in the mainstream press conveniently forget or forgive — the Weather Underground wasn’t just anti-war. Instead like ANSWER, WCW, and UFPJ they were, and remain radical communists bent on revolution. Many of their activities occurred after the US had already pulled out of Viet Nam, Zombie recalls a few:

May 18, 1973 – The bombing of the 103rd Police Precinct in New York. WUO states this is in response to the killing of 10-year-old black youth Clifford Glover by police.

September 28, 1973 – The ITT headquarters in New York and Rome, Italy are bombed. WUO states this is in response to ITT’s alleged role in the Chilean coup earlier that month. [NYT, 9/28/73]

March 6, 1974 – Bombing of the Dept. of Health, Education and Welfare offices in San Francisco. WUO states this is to protest alleged sterilization of poor women. In the accompanying communiqué, the Women’s Brigade argues for “the need for women to take control of daycare, healthcare, birth control and other aspects of women’s daily lives.”

May 31, 1974 – The Office of the California Attorney General is bombed. WUO states this is in response to the killing of six members of the Symbionese Liberation Army.

July, 1974 – The WUO releases the book Prairie Fire, in which they indicate the need for a unified Communist Party. They encourage the creation of study groups to discuss their ideology, and continue to stress the need for violent acts. The book also admits WUO responsibility of several actions from previous years. The Prairie Fire Organizing Committee (PFOC) arises from the teachings in this book and is organized by many former WUO members.

September 11, 1974 – Bombing of Anaconda Corporation (part of the Rockefeller Corporation). WUO states this is in retribution for Anaconda’s alleged involvement in the Chilean coup the previous year.

June 16, 1975 – Weathermen bomb a Banco de Ponce (a Puerto Rican bank) in New York, WUO states this is in solidarity with striking Puerto Rican cement workers.

etc.!

Meanwhile the AP is calling Sarah Palin racist for mentioning this long time associate of Barack Obama’s. Notice that the article fails to mention the Chicago Annenberg Challenge that Barack and Bill worked on together, or the education panel that Michelle Obama asked Bill and Barry both to speak at, or the glowing book review Barrack gave Bill’s book.

NO, they were just acquaintances according to AP, and if you bring this up then you must be racist. The Press is taking Barack Obama from Post-Racial to Most-Racial candidate whether he wants to go there or not. More at LGF

Oh, and for the leftists who think I”m going over the top by calling Ayers a communist, here’s his blog read for yourself, he’s not taking pains to hide it.

h/t Intrepid for the “Post-racial to most-racial” line.