Thursday, December 4, 2008

Conservatism Helps The Poor And Society In General

I think there are some serious misconceptions out there about the Republican Party and conservatism. One of the worst misinterpretations of conservative tenants is the perception that we could care less about the poor. Conventional wisdom out there in liberal land tells you that Republicans love stomping on the poor with the proverbial boot of big businesses. Nothing could be further from the truth, but our methodology is not as obvious as getting a check in the mail.

First, Republicans are pro-business for a reason: successful businesses help everyone out, including the poor. We have an economic system where all the businesses are fighting to give you what you want, when you want it, and at the lowest possible cost so more people buy their stuff over the competitor's. Having the necessities of life at a minimal price helps the poor greatly. If you're poor, Wal-Mart is your best friend. Dollars saved here and there add up quickly.

Second, companies provide tons of jobs for everyone to help poverty and unemployment at a minimum. I know many of you work at Daktronics. Having that big company right here in tiny Brookings is a great source of jobs for the poor (a.k.a. college students) to help them make ends meet. Liberals would have you think Daktronics is rich and evil and that they need to be taxed as much as possible. The corporate tax rate in the United States is 39 percent. Just think how many more jobs Daktronics could afford and provide if they could make 39 percent more? Companies expand and reap greater profits through hiring additional people to get more things done. Also, look what companies have been able to do for us. Through their millions of investors and customers, they have been able to accomplish unimaginable things for the benefit of all.

Take Verizon Wireless, for example. Last year they spent over a billion dollars on network improvements alone (or 14 dollars for each of their 70.8 million customers), allowing people to communicate from almost anywhere in America. If you get caught in a blizzard and call 911, your phone will communicate with a satellite in outer space, which can then tell dispatchers where you are within one foot. All that at the lowest possible cost to all of us. Taxing companies more hinders the ability for them to provide services like that and provide work for Americans.

Probably the most important way that conservatives care for the poor is how we choose to help them out. We actually like handouts to the needy just like our liberal friends; the difference is that we believe it's our responsibility as individuals to help our neighbors out. Sure it's easy to just raise taxes on the rich to help the poor, where we give the government ten dollars for one dollar worth of benefit. Let me keep that ten dollars and I'll go over and drop it in the Children's Miracle Network box in The Union. We know our neighbors and friends way better than any government entity, so who is best suited to help them out - the government or us? When I'm having a tough time, I talk to my friends and family instead of calling congressmen. If you're hit with hard times, what's going to give you a better, more positive outlook on life: a big check in the mail or a big spaghetti fundraiser with all of your friends and family there to help you pay for your chemotherapy? We need to help each other out, not look to a bloated, inefficient government to do it for us.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Real Change vs. Radical Change: What Would Conservatives Change?

Change. During this election, we’ve heard that word so many times we’re ready to puke. Obviously this country needs something different from what we currently have, what with a presidential approval in the low 30’s and a congress with an absolutely dismal approval rating of 9 percent. But in these rough times, I would ask you to think very carefully about what kind of change you want. There’s a difference between radical change and real change. I think most of America’s frustrations stem from the fact that the people we send to Washington to run our country don’t reflect what we believe. Let me throw some numbers at you:
-57 to 27 percent of the country would prefer less government services and lower taxes
-72 percent of Americans think that people moving to this country should adopt our culture
-69 percent of Americans feel the income tax system is unfair in that it taxes earnings rather than spending
-62 percent of Americans feel the country is fair and decent compared to 27 percent feeling it is unfair and discriminatory
Looking at these polls (all done by Rasmussen), I don’t see anything in Barack Obama’s liberal agenda that falls in with what mainstream America believes. Conservatives and Republicans stand with the country on those issues. Here are some areas where we Republicans and conservatives feel change is desperately needed.
Some high schools will spend a week teaching you how to put a condom on (the directions are on the wrapper), but will barely give 2 weeks to fiscal responsibility—God forbid an entire YEAR—teaching students incredibly important real-world things like how to do your taxes, manage a personal budget, and use credit responsibly? And everyone wonders why we have a 10 trillion dollar national debt and we’re in the middle of a financial crisis. Nobody knows how to manage money responsibly! I guess that English class semester on Greek mythology was more important. Speaking of fiscal responsibility, maybe we should send our bills to Washington D.C? Ridiculous suggestion, but where do we draw the line on bailouts? Oh wait; there shouldn’t be a line, because there’s no place in the constitution that says it is government’s responsibility to give money to companies when they’re having trouble. That would be liberal, activist lawyers/judges who have milked the “general welfare” clause of the constitution for all it’s worth.
Why is a picture of Jesus in a flask of urine (“P*ss Christ” by Andres Serrano) award-winning art, yet a political cartoon of Muhammad with a bomb for a turban is completely taboo? Both are figureheads of widely followed religions, but with the liberal agenda Jesus degradation equals free speech. Muhammad degradation equals offensive and divisive.
Education is key in our country. America spends the most money in the world on education, but with mediocre results. Why? I’ve had some incredible professors, and I want their pay to reflect that. Keeping lax educators in the system (thanks to Obama-supporting teachers’ unions) just drags down pay and incentives for quality educators and robs students of the best instructors they could possibly get. When did teachers’ job security and tenure become more important than student success and quality education?
I agree, this country does need change, but I believe us conservatives reflect the attitudes of the country as a whole and offer real solutions and the right change to get this country heading the right way.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Is the Free Market Dead?

In times of economic turmoil, everybody's looking for somebody to blame. To Democrats, everything is of course George Bush's fault, and in this case they may be partially right. But they're screaming that the free market and capitalism are dead, and more regulation is needed. I beg to differ, and would argue that regulation caused this crisis in the first place. The President had a responsibility to point out shaky businesses and shady accounting to the public, and then let the free market take care of those businesses as they'd see their stock value fall, forcing them to clean up their act, lest they go out of business. In that way, President Bush failed to keep the public informed about companies who were not operating properly.
What all this economic crisis boils down to is people defaulting on their mortgages. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are companies that purchase debt (mortgages) from banks so the banks can have more cash on hand and can then make more loans. These big companies purchased a lot of that debt, and many individuals who owed money were unable to pay it. Like I said, it all boils down to individuals defaulting on their loans. This happened for two reasons:

1) People were living outside their means. When you bite off more than you can chew, you aren't able to pay everything you owe, so this is a lesson in only purchasing what you can afford.
2) Regulation created the possibility for people to purchase houses that really couldn't afford them. The big kicker was the Community Reinvestment Act passed in 1977, and especially the tweaks the Clinton administration added to it. His goals were to emphasize "performance over paperwork", by extending credit to inner city communities. The goal was to give credit to low-income people and raise them up; a reasonable goal of government, but good intentions can lead to problems. As Janet Reno of the Justice Department stated:

“Today’s actions demonstrate that we
will tackle lending discrimination wherever and
in whatever form it appears. No loan is exempt,
no bank is immune. For those who thumb their
nose at us, I promise vigorous enforcement.” (article here)

In other words, the Clinton administration was so hell-bent on preventing loan discrimination, they forgot that, statistically speaking, the groups that were "discriminated against" have statistically bad credit. So go ahead and force banks to loan to low-income, inner city minorities. There's a reason certain people were not granted loans, because they had bad credit. Just don't be surprised when these people that banks had to give loans to (because of Clinton's enforcement) default on their loans and can't make the payments. Big institutions were buying all this potentially bad debt, and here we sit at the financial crisis.

I'm not paying $700 billion in taxpayer funded bailout to help out people who lived outside their means and have to move into a smaller apartment, or to bailout companies who make profit by purchasing bad debt trying to turn a profit on it and cook their books to make it look like the debt isn't as bad as it seems. I'll take the hit in my IRA, because this sets a terrible precedent and sends the message that big companies (too big to fail?) don't have to worry about risk, because if things go bad the government will bail them out. They got too big and too risky, now they have to pay the consequences. Market corrections do that; businesses that were too risky in good times fail and smart ones succeed. We're doing the country a disservice by helping out the unwise ones. Even if we have to take a hit now, we'll all be better off in the long run.

1) Get rid of the bad regulations that extend l0ans to bad credit individuals/businesses.
2) More transparency in these large companies that deal in debt purchases.
3) We need more oversight, rather than regulation, so investors can see exactly what's going on and can make wise decisions and the government can inform us of potentially risky business and the free market will keep people from making those bad investments and likewise improve the companies in question.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Palin Column

For those of you who missed it, here's my column that appeared in the SDSU Collegian last week:

Who would have thought that a former mayor of a town smaller than Brookings could be on a presidential ticket? John McCain's selection of Sarah Palin of Alaska surprised everyone, including Palin's family. She fishes, snowmobiles, has a pilot's license and hunts. As Sen. Fred Thompson put it at the GOP convention, "She is the only nominee in the history of either party who knows how to properly field dress a moose . . ." Palin was mayor of Wasilla for six years and governor of Alaska for two, so why do I think she's actually qualified to be on this presidential ticket? I'm not saying that she has tons of experience, but neither does Barack Obama. His experience amounts to maneuvering his way to success in the very corrupt Chicago political system, being a state legislator and Illinois senator for two years and announcing his candidacy for president after 143 days in the Senate. And remember: he's running for the top dog position.

Sarah Palin, on the other hand, has more executive experience than all of the rest of the tickets combined. It's easy for Obama, McCain and Biden to sit and debate legislation and cast their vote, passing laws and resolutions. Well, someone has to make those things happen, and that person is Sarah Palin. That's what executive experience is: execution of laws and orders. Talking big is easy, but actually making things happen is a great deal more difficult.

Not only does Palin have more executive experience, but the McCain/Palin ticket truly represents the ticket of change and Washington shakeup. Look at Obama/Biden. Sure, Obama would be the first African American, which is definitely change, but he proposes a return to '70s style nanny-state government that no amount of rich people can be taxed to pay for. Obama never breaks party line in his votes, which doesn't show me that he's "tired of same-old partisan politics." Not to mention he became top dog in a very corrupt Chicago political arena, rampant with back door deals and bribes. Obama went on to pick a conventional running mate: Biden, a career politician who also rarely breaks party lines. The Obamas are quite rich, whereas Palin had to elope with her husband because they couldn't afford a wedding.

The McCain/Palin ticket offers much more reform. It's led by an experienced political maverick who does what he feels is right, regardless of party lines. And backup president to the most experienced person in the campaign is Sarah Palin, a woman who isn't afraid to give the finger to her own party when they act stupid and corrupt. Just ask Ted Stevens (R-AK), whose $350 million bridge-to-nowhere earmark was vetoed in Alaska by none other than Palin, which is just one example of Palin's corruption purging. She's gone up against corruption in both parties and won. Some may criticize the fact that she was a former sportscaster, but let's not forget the last Republican sportscaster/actor that ran for President: Ronald Reagan.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Final Convention Note

Well, the 2008 Republican National Convention was a great success, as we can see how the McCain ticket has leaped in the polls. Although they are still essentially tied, McCain is now on the top of some of those polls. Stay tuned for the debates, people. The debate schedule is as follows:

1st Presidential - September 26
Vice Presidential Debate - October 2 (don't miss this one!)
2nd Presidential - October 7
3rd Presidential - October 16

Back to the convention, here's some pictures I took with my good camera:

Pictures, starting at the top left.

1) Me at the convention
2) John McCain speaking the last night of the convention
3) All the balloons falling
4) CNN converted a pub I ate at when I went to the Excel for volunteer training; they literally took the whole place over and remodeled it entirely
5) Armed guards to fend off the protesters. There is a huge anarchist group in Minneapolis/St. Paul that slashed delegate bus tires and news van tires.
6) A huge, HUGE TV screen outside of the Fox News tent, and it was playing news and commentary outside during the convention. I checked it over, and I don't think it was made at Daktronics.
7) View of the Excel from the outside. You can see the security checkpoints right there in the middle of the picture.
8) Me and Former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist. I was volunteering help out at the Alaska/Tennesee delegate hotel, and in walks Bill Frist was there with the Tennessee delegation. So I took a picture with him!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

GOP Convention Day 2

Well, the convention today was a much more eventful and exciting day, for the country and me, as the convention was back on after hurricane Gustav and I was able to score guest passes to the convention for today and the rest of the nights.
First off, I was working at the Alaska/Tennessee hotel assisting delegates which is where this picture comes from: (bear with me, I'll have better pictures when I can use good camera pictures and not phone pictures)

There were some local T.V. stations advertising "Minnesota Nice" and going around to various convention locations showing off Minnesota products and traditions. These Tennessee ladies were introduced to lutafisk, and it was pretty hilarious to watch their reactions.

The Alaska delegation (clearly big fans of drilling for oil in ANWR) had on hard hats sporting the "Drill here Drill Now" slogan, as well as full oil worker gear and were wearing them to the convention to make a point on energy solutions. I know new oil drilling won't increase actual supply for a few years, but oil is traded on a futures market, and the prospect of future supply will cause a drop in oil prices now, just like farm crops.

Once I finished helping delegates, I hopped on one of the convention buses and headed to the Excel Energy Center. Here's my view from the nosebleed guest section...but it was awesome! You really can't tell how huge that screen is from this picture, but it was massive and had top-quality picture...Daktronics maybe?

Yea, those are all the thousands of balloons that will be raining down on the delegates Thursday night...I'll have a video of that to post up. All in all, it was a pretty amazing experience. I ran into a few big people. I walked by Governor Pawlenty of Minnesota, talked a bit with state legislator and delegate Al Novstrup of South Dakota, and helped out the son of Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn, when he and his dad forgot their credentials at a different hotel.

Probably the most moving moment was when the RNC honored the family of deceased Medal of Honor recipient Michael Monsoor, the 4th in the war on terror. This man saved his friends and comrads by diving on top of a grenade, thus protecting them. He died 30 min later. This is a picture that was a picture of President Bush that was taken during the Medal of Honor presentation ceremony, where he had tears streaming down his face:

Regardless about what you think of the man, don't think for one second the president doesn't realize what consequences his actions have.

More to come tomorrow!

Monday, September 1, 2008

New Feed

I modified my blog website address, so anybody who has mine bookmarked, there's a new address:

And if you have subscribed to the site feed, there is also a new feed address:

Sunday, August 31, 2008

GOP Convention Day 1

Well, I'm down here at Republican convention in St. Paul, residing at a hotel in Bloomington. I figured I'd give you all some first-person perspective about what's going on. I volunteered to work down here, and my job isn't actually at the Excel Energy Center...I'm working at one of the delegate hotels...telling buses when to leave and greeting delegates. The delegations at the hotel I'm working at are the Tennessee and Alaska delegations...not normally that exciting, but with the recent pick by John McCain of Sarah Palin (Governor of Alaska) as his vice presidential running mate, suddenly my job may become much more exciting! Most likely she won't be there, but who knows?

Some exciting events for me today. I started out the day traveling to the Minneapolis Convention Center. I was invited through a contact of mine to go to the World Premier of the movie American Carol, a political parody of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol that makes fun of filmmaker (or should I say documentarian?) Michael Moore, as well as about every other group of people.
Check out the trailer for the movie here:

Right after checking in to the premier, patriotic singer Lee Greenwood kicked off a pre-show concert, where I was able to enjoy awesome America music, accompanied by free food (and beverages).

As I sat down for the movie, I chatted with the guy next to me. Turns out he is the Minnesota chairman of Young Republicans, and he is also the second cousin of the former superintendent of the high school I graduated from in North Dakota. Small world, huh?

Tomorrow (Monday) they canceled all of the extra fun stuff at the convention so everyone can focus on hurricain Gustav. Political party parties obviously go to the back burner when national emergencies take place, and kudos to everyone in charge who were able to evacuate 2 million people, which is a record evacuation. Proceedings will still take place at the GOP convention on Monday (with the rest TBA as the hurricain developes) as the Republicans have some mandatory things they have to take care of to legally exist as a party. President Bush and VP Cheney are skipping the convention to oversee things down at the Gulf.

I'm working on scoring some guest passes, so I can get an inside scoop from the convention. More to come!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

What Happened to Optimism?

I just realized that my last post was the 50th post on my blog, and I forgot to throw a party. Instead, I'm going to share an email that was sent to me from the North Dakota College Republican Chairman, Shawn Affolter that reiterates conservative thinking. Many of you turn on the news and feel our country is broken, fundamentally flawed, and that society is going down the toilet. Any story fit to print must have a death, a rape, or a car crash or it's passed over. Just pay attention to the top news issues, and how the negative spin can be looked at in a much more positive light. Obesity? We're fortunate enough that we have to think about eating TOO MUCH! Unemployment. We get edgy when 6% unemployment happens? That means 94% of the country has jobs! Let me take you away from the negative, pessimistic sphere of the dominant liberal media and give you a healthy dose of conservative optimism:

Reflection Day
These two truths should be self-evident.

By Victor Davis Hanson
July 4, 2008

On this Fourth of July of our discontent — with spiraling fuel prices, a sluggish economy, a weak dollar, mounting foreign and domestic debt, continuing costs in Iraq, a falling stock market, and a mortgage crisis — we should remember two truths about America. First, the United States remains the most free and affluent country in the history of civilization. Second, almost all our problems are lapses of complacency, remain relatively easily correctable, and pale in comparison to past crises.

By almost any barometer, the United States remains the most fortunate country in the world. We continue to be the primary destination of immigrants, who risk their lives to have a chance at what we take for granted. Few in contrast are flocking to China, Russia, or India. The catalyst for immigration is primarily a phenomenon of word of mouth, of comparative talking among friends and families about the reality of modern-day living, not of scholarly perusal of social or economic statistics.

When one compares any yardstick of material wealth — the number of cars, the square footage of living space, the number of consumer appurtenances — Americans are the wealthiest people in the history of civilization. Why so? Others have more iron ore, as much farmland, greater populations, and far more oil reserves. But uniquely in America there remains a system of merit, under which we prosper or fail to a greater extent on the basis of talent, not tribal affiliations, petty bribes, or institutionalized insider help. More importantly still, we are impressed by those who advance rather than envious of their success. The lobster-barrel mentality is a human trait, but in the United States uniquely there is a culture of emulation rather than of resentment, which explains why neither Marxism nor aristocratic pretension ever became fully entrenched in America.

Our system of government remains the most stable and free. Consider the constitutional crises in Europe where national plebiscites continue to reject the European constitution that grows increasingly anti-democratic in order to force its vision of heaven-on-earth on its citizenry. There is no need to mention the politics of China, India, and Russia whose increasing affluence ensures a rendezvous with unionism, class concerns, suburban blues, minority rights, environmentalism — all long known and dealt with by the United States. Elsewhere the remedy for tribal and sectarian chaos in Africa or the Middle East is usually authoritarianism.

The current challenge of America is not starvation or loss of political rights — we have been far poorer and more unfree in our past, but the complacence that comes with continued success, to such a degree that we think of our bounty as a birthright rather than a rare gift that must be hourly maintained through commitment to the values that made us initially successful: high productivity, risk-taking, transparency, small government, personal freedom, concern for the public welfare, and a certain tragic rather than therapeutic view of the human experience.

In that regard, most of our present pathologies are self-created. In fits of utopianism we felt we could be perfect environmentalists, no longer develop our ample oil, coal, and nuclear resources, maintain our envied lifestyle, mouth platitudes about “alternative energies,” and yet be immune from classical laws of supply and demand. In truth, with a little national will, within a decade we could both be using new sources of energy and producing our entire (and decreasing) appetite for oil without importation at all of foreign supplies. When our petroleum runs out, we will find other sources of energy; when a Saudi Arabia’s or Venezuela’s fail, so goes their entire national wealth as well.

Our budgetary laxity is a bipartisan stand-off in which free-spending pork-barrel Republicans mouth platitudes about reductions in spending while Democrats continue to vote for increased government programs, assured that either military cuts or tax increases will pay the tab. We still await some gifted statesman who will convince us that we can increase revenues and cut spending without loss of essential governmental services or oppressive taxes.

Iraq is expensive, but draws on a fraction of a $12 trillion economy; for all the acrimony over the war, Iraq is stabilizing, al-Qaeda has been discredited, and the notion of constitutional government in the heart of the ancient caliphate is not longer caricatured as a neocon pipedream — an accomplishment beyond the military of any other country.

Slumping house prices are a concern, but we forget that nearly 95 percent of homeowners meet their monthly mortgage payments, that housing prices are merely returning to their 2002 levels — to the relief of first-time potential buyers — that many of the problems were caused by housing speculators who wished to flip properties for instant profits, by overzealous lenders who warped the rules, and by misplaced liberalism that sought to put everyone in his own home, despite the historical fact that between 30 percent and 40 percent of the population either should not, or does not wish to, own their homes.

Given the strength of our system and culture and our inherited values and wealth, as long as we don’t tamper with our Constitution, a uniquely American entrepreneurial culture, and the melting-pot notion of shared values rather than balkanized tribes, races, and religions, we can easily rectify our present mistakes without much reduction in our soaring standard of living. In America alone — for all our periodic hysterical self-recrimination — there is still comparatively little danger of coups, nationalization of foreign assets, crippling national strikes, sectarian violence, terrorism, suppression of free speech, or rampant government and judicial corruption that elsewhere lead to endemic violence and economic stagnation.

On this troubled Fourth we still should remember this is not 1776 when New York was in British hands and Americans in retreat across the state. It is not 1814 when the British burned Washington and the entire system of national credit collapsed — or July 4, 1864 when Americans awoke to news that 8,000 Americans had just been killed at Gettysburg.

We are not in 1932 when unemployment was still over 20 percent of the work force, and industrial production was less than half of what it had been just three years earlier, or July, 1942, when tens of thousands of American were dying in convoys and B-17s, and on islands of the Pacific in an existential war against Germany, Japan, and Italy.

Thank God it is not mid-summer 1950, when Seoul was overrun and arriving American troops were overwhelmed by Communist forces as they rushed in to save a crumbling South Korea. We are not in 1968 when the country was torn apart by the Tet Offensive, the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy, and the riots at the Democratic convention in Chicago. And we are not even in the waning days of 1979, a year in which the American embassy was seized in Tehran and hostages taken, the Soviets were invading Afghanistan, thousands were still being murdered in Cambodia, Communism was on the march in Central America, and our president was blaming our near 6-percent unemployment, 8-percent inflation, 15-percent interest rates, and weakening international profile on our own collective “malaise.”

We live in the most prosperous and most free years of a wonderful republic, and can easily rectify our present crises that are largely of our own making and a result of the stupefying effects of our unprecedented wealth and leisure. Instead of endless recriminations and self-pity — of anger that our past was merely good rather than perfect as we now demand — we need to give thanks this Fourth of July to our ancestors who created our Constitution and Bill of Rights, and suffered miseries beyond our comprehension as they bequeathed to us most of the present wealth, leisure, and freedom we take for granted.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

A Little Known Truth About Phelps

My hat goes off to Michael Phelps. Shattering world records left and right, he crawled his way into Olympic history in an incredible way. Not only as an individual, but as a team as well...winning more gold medals in one Olympic games and more than anyone else has...ever.

Now with such a feat on the records, you know people will come out saying (as they already are), that such a machine is surely under the influence of performance-enhancing drugs. No, I'm not talking about Viagra, (which would most likely slow you down in the water, but I digress). I mean steroids and whatnot. Let me just throw a little wrench in the thought that Phelps is artificially great because of some drugs he's on.

Phelps VOLUNTEERED for extra rounds of drug testing (story here), including new and experimental tests for different drugs that were previously undetectable. Phelps signed up for a program that requires you to pee naked in front of officials to be sure there are no faked results. This was all part of a program called Project Believe, (click here for details) which tries to bring back trust by proving athletes are "clean" rather than that they are "dirty" via volunteer testing and above-and-beyond methods of testing.

Now I ask you: if Phelps were doping, why would he sign up for extra tests and increase his chances of being caught? Only someone with nothing to hide would subject himself to extra scrutiny voluntarily. Michael Phelps is a true champion, and one that other athletes should look to as an example. Bravo good sir, hope you don't hurt your neck with all those medals around it, the London games are only four years away!

Friday, August 15, 2008

O'reilly: Pinheads and Patriots 8/6

The pinhead segment just really goes to show an ugly trend in our country that comes with liberal thinking: that nothing is our fault and somebody else has to fix it. I really wish they would have played the dispatcher's response!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Homeless Hassled?

As you may have heard, at the Democratic convention they will be moving the homeless in an effort to make Denver look better during the convention later in August. I personally find this atrocious...the homeless will be put in shelters and given huge plasma TVs in order to watch the convention and I guess the intention is to get their votes by showing them who it was that gave them use of a ginormous TV for a couple of days. I'm not a fan of treating the homeless like dogs and rounding them up (see Germany, 1939) and giving them the proverbial gourmet dinner of Kibbles 'N' Bits to hush up the issue of homelessness in downtown Denver and other liberal parts of the country. I've noticed a pattern in all the places I've been in the country...the more liberal the city, the more homeless I see on the streets. Coincidence? Maybe. On a side note, I was in St. Paul over the weekend training as a volunteer for the Republican National Convention and was talking to some of the locals. One guy let me know that directly across from the Excel Energy Center is a large homeless shelter, and that the RNC has noted that none of Minneapolis' homeless will be relocated for their convention.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Obama's Slide

I'm going to predict this right now: Obama's popularity will continue to slip. This "freshie" of a senator is someone that people know absolutely nothing about. People desperate for a change latch on to anybody, and this is the guy they got. Now, people are actually starting to get to know him, and he's slipping in the polls (he's at a statistical tie with John McCain), and the more people know, the more they will realize how radical some of his ideas are and reject him. I was very amused at his solution to gas prices: inflate your tires and get tune ups! According to him, if everybody did this, we'd save just as much energy as if we drilled. OK, so why not do BOTH? Think how low prices would be. His next solution? Tax oil companies' profits and give everyone 1000 bucks. So investors (me) can't reinvest as much of those profits, so oil companies don't expand as much and gas prices double next year. So how much is he going to give us next year? $2000? It would be a perpetuating cycle of "taxing oil more, giving more to you, and gas prices increasing. So in other words an Energy Social Security, which is funded by taxing oil companies that Obama/Democrats are trying to drive into the ground anyway. Oil companies are our best hope for exploring alternative energies once oil runs out. Because once Exxon/Mobile runs out of oil to sell, are they just going to sit back and die? NO! They'll be the ones to fund research and development of new energy so they can keep making money, and Obama wants to tax the bejezzus out of them and give us money for oil that will just shoot up in price as the taxes put on the companies are reflected in the price at the pump? No thanks.
74% of Americans support offshore drilling and 56% support ANWR drilling; Obama's tire pressure solution will not make more people vote for him. Enjoy your ride on the slide down, Senator.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Personal Responsibility

Sometimes things are just stated better by other people, so I'm posting this link from the South Dakota Voice blog, which stresses the importance of personal responsibility and how it can better society. If all of us practiced this a lot more, the days of moronic lawsuits would be gone. If we don't, the country as we know it will be no more.

Check it out:

Friday, July 11, 2008

Discrimination on the Left

I love how Republicans/Conservatives are always traditionally the "racist" people in our country. There's always going to be those in our country that will hate someone because of their skin color or because they're different; no amount of government intervention and feel-goodedness will prevent that. Don't you think that breaking down the differences between us and treating everyone as the same in the view of government, which will then trickle down to all corners of society would be an effective way of fighting racist hatred? When the message sent out is that "your skin color doesn't matter," don't you think the bigots of our society MIGHT start to get the message and eventually those thoughts would be bred out of our culture? Reasonable, right? That's how us Conservatives feel, that no race/gender, anybody should recieve special privilege based on race/gender/orientation, whatever it may be...which is why we stongly oppose affirmative action measures. Erasing racial barriers is much more important than creating new and different ones with affirmative action. Affirmative action is something that the liberals/Democrats push strongly for, but my view is that this kind of action just puts more animosity between the races. Take a look at a page on Barack Obama's website (Click Here) that just goes to show how much race used to discriminate in liberal circles. For someone who claims to unite people with common goals and viewpoints, Obama's own site really works hard to catagorize people and point out differences between people. Splitting people up into "interest categories" does not unite people; it makes them think that those specific differences are significant in society. Race/gender/sexual preference/etc. are supposed to be things that don't matter when you look at a person and are trying to decide who they are as a person, so why do liberals continue to break society down and try to put labels on people? We are a United States because we ignore differences and unite behind common goals and attitudes...we can accomplish greater things when we put the minor differences aside and focus on greater and bigger things in the future than dwell on the past injustices of our forefathers; learn the lesson and move on as a new and improved, better society. I'm not going to look at you as a Pacific Islander/Asian American/African American/American Abroad/American with Disabilities/Environmentalist/First American/Kids/Latinos/Labor/LGBT/People of Faith/Student/Veterans/Women like Obama and the liberals will...I will look at you as a person and judge you by your character and what you do. Not what you look like.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Liberal Lawyers

So this is what some liberal lawyers really think when it comes to dealing with sex offenders putting them away for a good period of time:,2933,371344,00.html

Apparently this guy (as a defense lawyer) will "rip apart" children who have been victims of child rape if they have to take the witness stand. This is his rationale for opposing mandatory sentencing of 25 years for sex offenders, for the simple fact that he is a defense lawyer who has to defend the slimy human beings that commit such crimes. In creating a defense, I guess slamming a kid who has no understanding of how defense lawyers tear down a victim's credibility to build a defense case is his way of defending these child rapists. Could defense lawyers find some other sort of evidence, rather than trying to find holes in a 7-year-old's story about a rape? Nope, apparently the extent of his legal savvy is to interrogate young victims of rape and somehow trick them into providing some sort of story incoherence that will somehow support a defense of a rapist.

Don't you think a child that was put through such a traumatic experience would sleep much better knowing the "bad man" was in jail for 25 years and has no chance of hurting him or her again? I think that is a little more peace of mind than maybe having to relive some of the details of the rape in describing what happened in a courtroom. Liberal judges would have us believe that being a child rapist is a "disease", and allowing them out of jail as early as THREE MONTHS (see judge Edward Cashman, CLICK HERE) after being incarcerated for raping a child is an OK sentence. Over my dead body. Raping a child is not an "affliction," it's a crime.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Facebook Freethinkers

While surfing around and doing random Facebook clicking, I stumbled upon the page for the S.A.A.F.E. organization on the SDSU campus. S.A.A.F.E. stands for Skeptics, Agnostics, Atheists, Freethinkers, and Empiricists. Basically a group where all these kinds of "enlightened" people get together and pat eachothers' backs, as their description clearly shows:

Want to meet other NON-RELIGIOUS and FREETHINKING SDSU students? We need your ideas and interest!

Due to harassment generated by those opposed to free thought, we've been forced to make this a "closed group." To join, simply send an email to one of the administrators listed on the right side of this page and ask to be approved.

If you have a movie/discussion topic/event or gathering idea that promotes the objectives of SAAFE, please post it on the wall or message the group.

If you would like to receive our regular group emails covering SAAFE's activities, we ask you to attend our weekly meeting and add your name our list.

SAAFE meets every Tuesday evening at 8pm in Rotunda G on the campus of South Dakota State University--come join the fight against the Religious Reich!

Note: Admins will use the right to delete any posts/discussion threads at any time; after all, that's what admins do.

We want to be a place to share information and knowledge, but we can't do it without your support, cooperation, and input!

Here's the Facebook site too, if you don't believe me:

What a delightful group description. "Due to harassment generated by those opposed to free thought, we have to make this a closed group." Okay, so this is a Facebook group. The only thing harassment could have amounted to would be wall posts on the group opposing their viewpoints. Oh my. The best part is "by those opposed to free thought". Funny, I thought those for free thought might want to include all opinions in the debates of the world, not closing down group membership and shunning people from the discussion. "Fight the Religious Reich." Like we've ever done anything to them short of proposing some sort of moral base. Like maybe not cut babies apart and extract them for growing new livers for people? Like we're comparable to Nazis for thinking there MAY be something wrong with that?
"Admins have the right to delete posts and discussion feeds, because that's what Admins do." Are you kidding me? So basically they see something they don't like or someone makes a good point against them and they can delete it. Great for debate and finding the best solution for society by not listening to other viewpoints. Way to be free thinking, if that's what you call it.

Just think if I played by those same rules. A hypothetical, if you will:

"Okay, nobody can read my site except for those that agree with me. Should one of you post a comment on my blog that I do not agree with or take any amount of offense to, that post will be promptly deleted. After all, I'm an administrator, and that's what I do (just to make sure there's a good amount of "varied" opinion and free thinking, I will exclude those who deviate from accepted topics.)

Sorry guys, I'm back now. :-) That previous paragraph was to be read with a heavy amount of sarcasm.

Everyone is welcome to post anything at any time and about anything from any viewpoint on my blog. Or would that imply that I am one of those "opposed to free thought?" Well, if allowing all viewpoints falls under that catagory, that I guess I am opposed to free thought.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Yes, I am still here

It's been a while since I posted last. For all my faithful readers, I am still here. This blog was a part of one of my classes, which I completed (with an A, mind you) in May. I want to continue this blog, because I love politics and think it's important to get the conservative voice out there. I won't be having the question of the week per se, as that was kind of a requirement for the class, unless I get a bunch more readers that might have a question that they would like me to post about, then I will post reader questions under the heading of "Question of the Week." Since this is no longer for class (and a grade) I will try to have a lot more fun with it and hope you all comment and make this a fun and informative new-media place.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

What's Your Name Again?

The Supreme Court ruled that is is constitutional to require a valid form of identification to vote in an election. Liberals and Democrats are crying foul, as they feel it will restrict lower income voters from voting because of the cost of attaining a valid ID. I applaud this Supreme Court decision. Heaven forbid we are able to tell if people are who they say we are. It's terrible, I know, to have verification that a person is actually a citizen of the United States and is even eligible to vote. It's heartless of me to want to have honest elections, free of voter fraud that is widespread in places where identification is not required. An identification card is like 10 dollars...I think that's a small price to pay in order to make sure people are who they say they are and eliminate voter fraud and make sure that the "one person, one vote" philosophy stays true. The reason Democrats oppose ID requirements is simple: they feel they can get a lot of the illegal immigrant vote. Without ID requirements, they could all vote and help Democrats win elections. Voter fraud is also easier to pull off. I think requiring ID will bring honesty back to the voting process and the person who gets the most votes wins...without any doubt.

Guam? GUAM?

I think this may be unprecedented in our election. Candidates running for office are that desperate for electors to get the nomination that they are actually paying attention to the tiny US territory of Guam. Guam has only 4 delegates, as well as 5 superdelegates, for a grand total of 9 delegates. It's funny how the places that didn't matter before suddenly are important and get attention. I'm curious how important South Dakota will become to the Democrats that normally view it as a "fly over" state as their nomination process drags on. It bothers me when candidates could care less, then when you matter they come and tour the state, pretend they have stories from here, and act like they're neighbors with you. Three cheers for elitism!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Question of the Week: Who Will Win the Presidency in 2008?

Tough question. My gut instinct tells me that John McCain will be our next president, and that's not just wishful thinking on my part. First, he's a fairly moderate person when compared to the far-left Democratic candidates, which would lead me to believe that he would get more votes and thus win the election. Second, John McCain is not having the duel with another candidate like the Democrats are doing right now. Hillary and Obama with be throwing mud at each other until the Democratic convention in August, and McCain won't have much tossed at him until the general election, when he has an opponent that is already battered, worn out, and penniless just from the nomination fight. That being said, it is a LONG way until election day; much can happen. Maybe all three of them will be blown up in an attack on the capitol building when Senate is in session, who knows? Maybe I'll end up being Mr. President.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Scare Tactics

I really hate any politician (it doesn't matter the party, but the Democrats do it a lot), organization, or ideology that tries to accomplish things by scaring you into going along with them. People listen to things a lot more and are willing to listen to you if you make them believe that the alternative is drastic and scary and my kill you. Here's what I hear when I turn on liberal TV, read a liberal newspaper, or listen to a liberal talk: everything is out to get you, the world is mean and nasty, people hate you for one reason or another, the planet getting a little warmer will cause worldwide destruction, religion makes people hate, everything made by man will cause cancer or impotence, and by the way? You're too fat. That's what I hear. And the subliminal message to all this, the solution if you will, according to the Democrats? More regulation and control of your lives. You aren't smart enough for yourself to decide, so the government is going to do it for you. Let's run down the list. People out to get you translates into: big corporations are out to get you because a 100 million people buy a $1 item and their big profit symbolizes their exploitation of you, even though that good was extremely cheap and affordable for you. The world is mean and nasty translates into we're going to take from rich, successful ambitious people and give stuff to you because you decided welfare, handouts, food stamps, and entitlements are much easier than working or planning financially for yourself! People hate you translates into hey, we want the minority vote so we'll say that racism is rampant in our nation and promise you special benefits to compensate for that, even though that's reverse racism. Everything causes cancer translates into tons of regulations on any chemicals, no matter how unfounded the statistics are or irrational those regulations are. (DDT is extremely effective and cheap way to control mosquitoes, which carry malaria, which kills more people in Africa than AIDS, but DDT is a big no-no according to liberals, because it weakens egg shells). You're too fat translates into we're going to control what you eat and regulate fast food restaurants because you're not responsible enough to look after your own health. Here's a quote for you directly from the press to prove it:
"Fast Food Nation is the kind of book that you hope young people read because it demonstrates far better than any social studies class the need for government regulation, the unchecked power of multinational corporations and the importance of our everyday decisions." - Deirdre Donahue, USA Today
Scare tactics only lead to more messing in your lives, so think twice when a politician or media outlet tries to frighten you into thinking one way or another.

Obama Goes On Fox News And Lives To Tell The Tale!

Wow! A prominent liberal Democrat showed his face on the uber-conservative, cruel, relentless, Democrat-lynching, liberal-bashing, evil Fox News Channel! Is Obama okay? Did he survive? Is he in a wheelchair now? Did any blood transfusions have to take place? NO! He is perfectly fine, and would you think it, the discourse was civil! Heaven forbid that a network has a few anchors that are openly conservative as to take the guesswork out of deciphering any media bias! Obama actually accepts an invitation to appear on the network (as many Democrats are fearful to do, as they might have a conservative ask them a question) and he was treated with the utmost decency and was not torn apart! Maybe the network that says it is "fair and balanced" actually is in some ways. Sure there are many openly conservative people on the show, but at least you know that. Asking difficult questions should be at the forefront of any campaign. Democrats often shy away from Fox News, as there are conservatives there that may challenge them with a tough question. It is a lot easier to go on a show that's sympathetic to the Democratic cause on a different network and answer questions like "what's your favorite beer?" "What kind of car do you drive?" "What size shoe do you wear?" Those questions have zero substance to them and have nothing to do with policymaking. He goes on Fox that might challenge him, and he might get a question like "What exactly was your relationship with Reverend Wright?" "How exactly do you intend to fix Social Security?" Things that are important and tough are also tough to answer, so why not interview on the channel that asks you: Coke or Pepsi?

Pouring Gas On A Fire

As if the Reverend Wright controversy was not big enough already. Wright is now going around the country refuting the things Obama said to distance himself from Wright. I'm particularly fond of Wright's comment that "Obama didn't distance himself" but "did what politicians do." That comment could hurt Obama a lot, particularly in a campaign that's pushing for "C@&*^%." (I'm so sick of hearing that meaningless campaign catchword from a campaign that will return us to the failed policies of the 50s/60s that I am now going to censor the word change in all of my posts from now on) Obama's campaign also claims that it is "not politics as usual," but here is Wright saying that Obama is "doing what politicians do". The more we hear from Wright about Obama, the more his campaign seems sounds like the same-old same-old.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Change In The Wind?

Hillary Clinton was able to pull out a fairly decent victory in Pennsylvania yesterday, even by double digits over Obama. Winning was a thing that Clinton has not managed to do for a while, and winning by that large of margin may be able to throw some momentum in her favor. Particularly with another tight primary race coming up in Indiana. If she manages to win there, there is no way she will ever drop out of this race until the convention, as she will gain even more momentum going into the rest of the primaries. Obama continues to shoot himself in the foot (although in reality, they both are), so this Democratic party shakedown will continue for months to come. There will be more beating each other up, more super delegate controversy, and more votes for McCain come November. Good times.

Monday, April 21, 2008

McCain Accepts Public Funds...Good Or Bad For Him?

John McCain, the eventual Republican nominee, has decided to use federal dollars in order to fund his campaign, which limits how much he is able to spend. Even so, he will be eligible for $84 million, which is no small amount of change. Obama, who many people feel will be the Democratic nominee, has raised around $236 million so far, a huge amount when compared to what McCain gets to spend. Since Obama is not accepting public funds, he can spend and receive as much as he can possibly want. I'm not sure this was wise of McCain, but it could work out, too. Obama is going to have to spend a large amount of his money just securing the nomination, and in doing so he may exhaust the pocketbooks of many of his donors. I also have faith in Republicans being able to stretch each dollar as far as it can go. In 2004, John Kerry outspent President Bush by a wide margin, yet Bush was able to win the presidency. McCain will also be able to have a sort of matching funds program with the Republican National Committee. Money is important, but I think it is vastly more important for the money to be spent in the most effective manner. When a candidate has a vast surplus of money, often those funds are not spent in the wisest manner, so I think it will be interesting to see how much of an effect money has on the outcome of this election.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Question of the Week: Obama's Quote

I would like to disclose Obama's full quote, so everyone can see the context and then I can explain why I am even more put off by him after the full quote, not just the quote we've all seen on T.V., the part which I have placed in bold.
Here is a large chunk of his speech, so you can all the context of what he was saying:
"So, it depends on where you are, but I think it's fair to say that the places where we are going to have to do the most work are the places where people feel most cynical about government. The people are mis-appre...I think they're misunderstanding why the demographics in our, in this contest have broken out as they are. Because everybody just ascribes it to 'white working-class don't wanna work--don't wanna vote for the black guy.' That's...there were intimations of that in an article in the Sunday New York Times today - kind of implies that it's sort of a race thing.
Here's how it is: in a lot of these communities in big industrial states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, people have been beaten down so long, and they feel so betrayed by government, and when they hear a pitch that is premised on not being cynical about government, then a part of them just doesn't buy it. And when it's delivered by--it's true that when it's delivered by a 46-year-old black man named Barack Obama (laughter), then that adds another layer of skepticism (laughter).
But--so the questions you're most likely to get about me, 'Well, what is this guy going to do for me? What's the concrete thing?' What they wanna hear is--so, we'll give you talking points about what we're proposing--close tax loopholes, roll back, you know, the tax cuts for the top 1 percent. Obama's gonna give tax breaks to middle-class folks and we're gonna provide health care for every American. So we'll go down a series of talking points.
But the truth is, is that, our challenge is to get people persuaded that we can make progress when there's not evidence of that in their daily lives. You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing's replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it's not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.
Um, now these are in some communities, you know. I think what you'll find is, is that people of every background--there are gonna be a mix of people, you can go in the toughest neighborhoods, you know working-class lunch-pail folks, you'll find Obama enthusiasts. And you can go into places where you think I'd be very strong and people will just be skeptical. The important thing is that you show up and you're doing what you're doing."
Essentially was Obama is saying is that people are frustrated with government and that when people are down and out, they turn to things like guns and religion (traditionally conservative/Republican areas) and that's why he won't get the vote. I strongly disagree with this, which I made clear in my last post. But the full context also points out an ambiguity; an oxymoron in Obama's reasoning. He states that people are fed up and untrustworthy of government. A funny statement to be saying, as most of his solutions to all of our problems is MORE government, more intervention in our lives, and more complex, inefficiently run government programs that are the very thing that people are fed up with. I don't trust government in the least (Republican or Democrat), but I have to make a choice to have some sort of government, and at least I have a better shot getting less intrusion into my life electing a Republican. Obama claims that he is the man who can fix things, he thinks people are thinking "what can this guy do for me", to use his own words. Well I know a very famous Democrat (with whom I actually happen to agree with) who said "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." John F. Kennedy said that, and he's very right. I don't look to Barack Obama or John McCain to solve my problems. I know how to best fix my problems and help others fix theirs way better than any governmental official or government program because I know them on a personal level. The attitude of people shouldn't be "Obama will fix our problems," it should be "what can I do to better my country and the people around me and find solutions to my own problems?" If everyone helped their friends and family a little bit more, this country would be much better off and that's when people would stop being so cynical, Mr. Obama. People cling to things like religion because religion can give people something on a personal level in a way that government can never possibly begin to do. The country is better off when people help people, not when government helps people.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Barack's Out of Touch With Middle America? Ironic, Coming From Hillary Clinton

Senator Barack Obama has once again hinted at his true character. In a recent speech, he commented on small-town Midwesterners by saying that "it's not surprising they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations." Let me sum those words up with my own farm boy, stupid, ignorant, and completely retarded brain: people like me like guns, church, and upholding our immigration laws (and we're also apparently racist in Obama's opinion) because I am frustrated. Excuse me, sir, but I believe in those things for substantially more important and worthwhile reasons than that I'm FRUSTRATED with things. The worst part about this is that Hillary Clinton is playing off these comments in a campaign add and saying he is "out of touch" with Middle America, when she has the exact same attitudes! We here in South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, and all the rest live in what's called "fly-over states", in that we are flown over by politicians going back and forth from the important, elitist coast states. These kinds of elitist attitudes have no place in the hearts of Midwest American people. The Democratic party has become the party of the wealthy elites, and the rest of us are just pawns to be wooed and convinced to vote for them when they need a couple more states under their belts to win an election. If they spent any time out here, they would realize that we are some of the smartest, innovative, tolerant, and down to earth people on the planet...but they wouldn't know that, would they? Washington D.C. and New York are quite a ways away from the heart and soul of America...the Midwest.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Having Tea With Terrorists,2933,348989,00.html

Former president Jimmy Carter's trip to the middle east to meet with Hamas is interesting, to say the least. I'm curious to see what will come of it. I'm guessing one of two three things will happen. First, Jimmy Carter, in his infinite negotiating wisdom, will end up "securing a mass of compromises and promises" with Hamas (a terrorist organization as defined by the state department). These "compromises and promises" will boil down to nothing but empty promises and rhetoric stated by the organization making themselves sound much more peaceful and touchy-feely than the ruthless terrorists they are in order to gain supporters around the world and to undermine United States efforts against terroristic organizations. A second scenario plays out similar to the first. Jimmy Carter will be holding talks with these terrorists on their soil, and will end up bashing American policy, efforts, and philosophy while on foreign territory, just like Al Gore. And the third (maybe the most likely) scenario? Hamas decides this is a perfect opportunity to make an example of America and slaughters Jimmy Carter on the spot. Let's hope that doesn't happen, but I would not be surprised.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

What If Iraq Ends Up In The Win Column?

For the first time in American history, a political party's success explicitly depends on our failure in a war. Should Iraq become a complete success and it turns out President George W. Bush was right in promoting democracy in that part of the world (all weapons of mass destruction aside), the Democratic party and its leaders will lose a huge amount of support. The leaders of the party have openly declared defeat in Iraq (see: Harry Reid, D-NV) whilst our troops are in harm's way and continue to fight for success in Iraq. All this while General Petraeus tells us today that things are dramatically improving in that country! I see many, many Democrats getting voted out of office once we win in Iraq. They declare defeat and then we end up winning, which we are starting to now and granting freedom to an entire nation? That is a huge blow to their credibility and they will lose a lot of support in the future if Iraq ends up in the win column.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Economics 101: Again

Everyone gets a little nervous when the economy gets a little shaky, but mild recessions will always happen, and they are a natural, self-correcting part of our economy. In a recession, slightly higher unemployment will occur, but this is not necessarily bad for a couple reasons. First, the recession came about in the first place because of a period of having a very successful economy. Business is booming, companies are expanding and adding on that new wing to the factory or office, investors are taking risks and many are becoming successful. A recession takes place when some of these ventures and investments do not work out. Turns out the business could not quite afford that new wing or the investment in that hot new computer company fell through because nobody was interested in the new products they were selling. Each of these failed ventures in turn represents employee job loss when these companies/businesses/investments fails. But remember, none of these jobs were there before the economic boom took place, and many new and risky investments were successful and created many more new jobs. So a recession is the market's way of keeping people from making too risky and foolhardy of investments, and a recession represents some of the more risky investments failing and also the jobs that were created as a result. The economy as a whole slows down, because many businesses and markets are interdependent on one another, so failure of some can cause pain in other industries as well. The sub-prime lending mess is a great example of what's going on right now. Companies such as Bear Sterns made risky business, and now we are having a recession because there were some risky deals made in the housing market. Some companies and individuals made too risky of investments over the last few years of economic prosperity that they were not able to afford, and now we have a mild recession as these people rework their situation to fix what mistakes they made. Once they do, unemployment will decrease once again and the economy will get back on its feet.
Amidst all this, the Democratic candidates and those in Congress propose a dangerous and ill-advised plan. They want to bail out companies and people who made these risky investments. This is a terrible idea in that it would say "go ahead, make incredibly risky investments, the government will come and bail you out if it doesn't work out". The lesson of recessions is to not be too risky in business endeavors and to learn limits of acceptable risk and to expand your business (and jobs) in a reasonable and safe manner. If the Democrats promise to bail out everyone who makes a mistake, none of these lessons will be learned and only cause more problems down the road, because why be careful investing if you know the government will just come in and save your butt? No responsibility required.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Question of the Week: Why Do Politicians Lie?

Politicians lie for a very simple reason: to get more votes. It's a reality of politics that not every person in the country will agree with your goals and beliefs. Maybe not even a majority of the country (or state, city, or school-wherever the election is taking place) will agree with a politician's positions. Having to please enough people to build a majority of supporters means that, as a politician, you have to tell people something that will please them enough to get them to vote for you. Crooked politicians will tell one group of people something in Florida, and then tell a different group the complete opposite when in Ohio. Fortunately, our founding fathers established freedom of the press and speech in our constitution and we can point out these discrepancies, especially in the age of YouTube. Even so, the ability to point out candidates' lies and "misspeaks" is irrelevant if the people who are voting don't pay attention enough to realize that they are being lied to. When a large chunk of the population doesn't make up their mind about who they are going to vote for until they get into the voting booth, that tells me that likewise a large chunk of the population is apathetic and uninformed. They hear something told to them by a candidate in Florida and go vote without realizing that the candidate said the complete opposite in Ohio. Which leads me to my second reason why politicians lie: because they can. Only very politically inclined people and those who really scrutinize the news are the ones that can actually make the connection of when a candidate is or is not lying. Only the well informed will know when lies are being told, and I think that a small percentage of the population pays this amount of attention. The rest of the population can be lied to and it will not affect how they vote, since they don't realize the politician is lying to them and thus their vote is not swayed.
Since a lot of the population falls for that kind of trickery, it is to the politician's benefit to lie to different groups of voters. You go around the country telling people what they want to hear--even if it's not the truth--and you will gain a lot of support in the uninformed voter demographic. That's why Thomas Jefferson stressed the importance of a "strongly informed and well-educated electorate", so that a majority of voters know their stuff and can make informed, educated, and well thought out votes when they go vote, and not just close their eyes and fill in ovals.

The Politics of Religion

McCain is starting to draw criticism for not talking about his religion much. Faith and politics has always been a touchy subject, everything from Kennedy being a Catholic to Obama's current situation with his pastor. I think that McCain is smart to not talk about his religion much. Religious voters feel very strongly about candidates' spiritual orientation, and many vote along those kinds of political lines. I don't think a candidate should be obliged to disclose the details of his religious faith. Sometimes the media can rip people apart over these things, and it can become part of a candidate's downfall. Take Mitt Romney, for example. Oh my gosh, he's a Mormon! Many people ignorantly didn't vote for him for that reason, just because he was Mormon. All religion really does is mainly influence how a candidate will feel on a certain issues, so if you feel the same on those issues, who cares what religion they are? It's not like they'd be extreme enough to instate their specific religion and repress everyone else; there's way too many checks and balances in our system to even get close to that kind of thing. I don't know what McCain's religious views are, but whatever they are, they cause him to adopt certain values that he would use in his presidency, and I just happen to agree with them too, even though we are more than likely not of the same religious persuasion.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Question Of The Week: Democrats For McCain?

According to recent polls, 20% of Democratic voters say they will vote for Senator John McCain if their preferred Democratic nominee does not get the nomination. Do I think they will really do this come election day? I'm sure that will be fairly close to the percentage of Democrats who will vote for McCain, although we're a long way from election day. I think this is mainly due to McCain's appeal to moderate/independent voters. Both of the Democratic nominees are very liberal candidates, moderate Democrats probably see the opposing candidate as more liberal than their preferred candidate. Couple that with John McCain's appeal to more moderate/independent voters, and it makes sense that he would get a large portion of moderate Democrat voters. Some of those may just not vote, particularly the young, impressionable, and passionate Obama voters. Either way, whether it be moderates crossing party lines or refusing to vote, John McCain benefits.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

McCain Looks To Be The Only One Winning Right Now

There's been a lot of negative things swirling about the two remaining Democratic candidates. Whether it is Hillary Clinton exaggerating her foreign policy experience by saying she came under "sniper fire" when in actuality she was getting flowers from kids or Obama's pastor's anti-American remarks from the pulpit, the Democrats have a severe problem with all these negatives flying around. Each day they continue to lose support, and those supporters are either going to vote for McCain (he's beating both of them in the polls) or they're not going to vote at all. Either way, McCain comes out on top from all these negative issues the Democrats are caught up in. Add to that the "super delegate" problem and the Democrats have quite the mess on their hands. McCain '08

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Undemocratic Democrats

This Democratic race that is shaping up is hilarious to me. I've never seen something so undemocratic in a primary process as these so-called "super delegates." These are delegates to the Democratic National convention who are able to vote for whomever they choose, regardless of how the state/district majority they represent voted. So, according to current Democratic Party rules, the popular vote DOESN'T really count??? I do not want to hear another Democrat gripe about the losing the 2000 presidential election, when they turn around and adopt rules that feng shwee pure democracy far more than our presidential electoral system does. Not all the electors are "super delegates," but many are, and in this close presidential nomination race, their votes will actually matter. What great wisdom on the part of the Democrats that the nomination might actually be close (and not a coronation of Hillary Clinton) and that the vote might actually come down to how these non-democratic "super delegates" decide to vote. Now the Democrats want to have the "super delegates" decide earlier how they want to vote, before the convention, so the injustice of this undemocratic process has blown over by the convention so voters do not become disenfranchised with how much their voices have been muffled and trounced upon by their elitist, undemocratic Democratic party that says 700 high-ups in the Democratic party are more important than the voices of the people.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

How About We Use Democracy To Decide On Money Spent?

Kudos to Jim DeMint (R) of South Carolina. He's going against so many people to do the right thing. He wants to put a one-year moratorium on congressional earmarks. Earmarks are spending taglines in bill for projects that are not attributed to any senator/representative that fund specific projects. These are sneaked in by our leaders to bring dollars to their home state without the measure even being voted on to be added to the bill. We wonder why the dollar is in the toilet, the economy is weak, and the national debt is enourmous? It's because all these little projects all senators/representatives want to bring home to their own state add up VERY QUICKLY. Why should South Dakotans pay taxes to pay for a $200,000 earmark to Ohio to finance their rock and roll hall of fame? Why should we pay taxes to finance a $320 MILLION dollar bridge in Alaska to an island with 50 people living on it. FIFTY PEOPLE!! And that's just ONE EARMARK! Luckily, that "Bridge to Nowhere" earmark was averted, thanks to concerned citizens. But very similar ones get passed everyday, and all those little millions of dollars add up. I hope you all have a grasp of just how much a million dollars is worth, because congress flushes money down the proverbial toilet like you wouldn't believe. And we're just talking millions. Barack Obama has proposed a plan to support foreign countries that would cost a whopping 825 BILLION DOLLARS; essentially just a handout to the United Nations to fund developing countries through ineffective handouts that foster little, if any economic growth. In addition, we have no say in what countries this money goes to. Do you have any idea how much 825 billion dollars is???? And that's in addition to every other pet project and program our already overreaching government spends money on. Pay attention people. And people wonder why we have a massive national debt? It's no surprise to me with such irresponsible congressional spending!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Economics 101, Something Most Americans Aren't Capable Of

Today the Federal Reserve used some "creative accounting", essentially hooking jumper cables to the United States economy. We always see headlines like these, saying "the Dow jumped 400 points today" and things of that nature. How many Americans actually know what's going on? I have had tons of economics classes, so I roughly understand what is going on in the economy. But how many Americans can actually look at this news story and actually say that they have a clue about what is going on? This is because our public education system is stacked against students. I didn't even have the option to take an economics class in my high school, and many other schools only offer optional, basic courses. To me, I would think that concepts of taxation, credit, buying a home, getting a loan, and etc. would be CRUCIAL to someone's education, but our schools don't teach those things! It took me to college to learn anything about taxes, and that's because I was lucky enough to be REQUIRED to take an economics course, which I then made my minor. Not knowing these crucial life lessons allows bodies of government to exploit citizens, simply because they DON'T KNOW ANY BETTER. Removing economics from school curriculum creates generations of dependent and ignorant consumers and citizens, simply because they are kept in the dark with regards to economic issues.

Media As A Whistleblower,2933,336837,00.html

Well, the media certainly does have a role in holding politicians accountable. The governor of New York is under investigation for his involvement in a high-class prostitution ring. Obviously he's been up to no good, the way he is apologizing to the public and to his family. For a few years now this ring has been under investigation, and his name came up. I commend the press for actually taking time to turn attention from the heated presidential campaign to blow the whistle on a governor who has been taking time from his duties to participate in illicit activities.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Question of the Week: What Factors Should A Candidate Consider When Dropping Out Of A Political Campaign?

Candidates running for office must consider many factors when deciding to drop out of a race or keep plugging along. Candidates definitely have to worry about their financial situation. Campaigning relies heavily on candidate appearances and media attention; both of which are extremely expensive. Without these two factors, a candidacy is almost certainly kaput. Candidates often need to face the math that they're up against, too. Momentum of their opponents is often so incredible and they are behind by so much it's nearly impossible to come back and win. Candidates should keep in mind the opportunity costs involved in staying in a campaign. If they're losing a presidential campaign but enjoy bountiful support back home, the candidate may be better off running against an incumbent in the opposing party for, say, a senate seat. Candidates have to keep in mind the vitality of the party in situations like this, and if the writing is on the wall that they're just not the candidate people want, candidates should do what they can to help their party out, whether it be running for another office or helping with grassroots efforts.

Monday, March 3, 2008

The United Nations: A Guard Dog With No Teeth,2933,334550,00.html

Oh wow, the United Nations has slapped some sanctions on Iran to "stop" them from continuing their work towards nuclear weapons. If Iran follows any precedent at all, these sanctions will stop them from doing nothing. Iran cares nothing for the effects of sanctions on its people, so imposing sanctions will do nothing to sway the government and will only hurt the people of Iran, not the leadership. If the United Nations could actually back up what it says to countries and have some way of making rogue states fall in line, maybe they would actually be worthwhile. Personally, I'm not as frightened of a guard dog with no teeth.

Money Money Money

John McCain has been slow to get large amounts of monetary donations from his supporters. When compared to Clinton and Obama, he hasn't raised much at all. Even so, he's almost certainly secured the nomination of his party without spending nearly the amount his Democratic counterparts have to secure the same status. Each Democrat has much more of their base support than McCain has, as he was not the first choice of conservatives in the Republican party. He has lots of time to earn their support, and once he does the dollars will start flowing in around when the Democrats finally have a nominee. In other words, the Democrats and raising lots of money and spending it also just to get the nomination. Meanwhile, Republicans have not donated in big numbers while trying to find their nominee, which means there are lots of people out there yet to donate. I see McCain raising huge amounts of money in the upcoming months, as he has more time to shore up base support, also known as $$$$$$$. The Democrats, on the other hand, are spending millions just trying to get the nomination, and the base has split their dollars between two candidates, one of which will not go on after the primary season.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Immigrant Problems

More innocent people killed by illegal immigrants, this time is was four kids on a school bus. How many more news stories like this one need to come up before something is done to curb this problem. Since this person was illegal, she was invisible to our system. Being a citizen and knowing who is here allows illegals to become driver certified, makes them pay taxes into a system from which they already mooch benefits, and allows us to know who and what people are doing things. Here's what I propose:
First, we need to make it easier to become a legal citizen in this country, but not too easy. The process must be quickened for people who are willing to pass all the citizenship tests and whatnot. It shouldn't take 11 or more years for honest people to get into this country who are willing to do those things. These exams are important, because America has certain beliefs and traditions that are kept whole by exposing immigrants to this country to those ideals and how our country operates. If we can expediate the people through the system that are willing to become legal citizens and come out in the open to do these exams, then we can focus more on those who are not willing to go through the system.
Second, we need to enforce our deportation policies with regards to illegal immigrants. If they are caught for doing something illegal, deport them. If they are willing to break the law to come here, in what other ways are they willing to break the law?
Third, we need to have very serious talks with Mexico about reforms to that country, whether it be with the United States, United Nations, or otherwise. Mexico has one of the most corrupted, bureuacratic, aristocratic, and repressive countries in the world. The justice system is in shambles, and the leaders are determined by who can pay off who. A huge amount of the population consists of landless, dependent people; essentially 21st century serfdom. Mexico is the country that needs change, and it needs it badly. They could be a first-world country, but that won't happen with third-world attitudes.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Question of the Week: Does Negative Campaigning Work?

Yes and no.
First, it really depends on the mood of the election. As we talked about in class, if people are sick of that kind of stuff, voters will really be turned off by negative campaigning. On the other hand, criticisms can be important in an election to point out inconsistencies and problems with opposing candidates.

Something dubbed a negative campaign may not always necessarily be a negative campaign. There are several different genres of campaigns. A campaign ad may just flat-out smear and rip into a candidate with falsehoods, name-calling, and half-truths. In my opinion, this is the worst kind of negative campaigning as it intentionally misleads and does not even reference the candidate who is paying for the ad--it just rips into the other person.

A second type, one I like to call "two truths and a lie", states some things about the opposing candidate, sometimes true and sometimes false, but then compares those things to the candidate's positions the ad is purporting.

The third type is like the last one, but the ad is actually honest and points out very concerning things an opposing candidate supports, and this is a very important part of politics in that it points out real concerns to voters. It casts a candidate in a light that says "I do not support these positions" and draws clear differences between candidates so voters can decide.

Unfortunately, campaigns are rarely honest, so we are not often exposed to the truth or the whole truth, but pointing out differences between candidates, which I would not call "negative campaigning" is much better than flat out smearing a candidate with falsehoods and lies.

I think negative ads might be more beneficial to candidates who are running against an incumbent. Controversial things will get more free air time for the candidate and more name recognition for the person who is trying to make a name for themselves. Also, campaigns against an incumbent are often dubbed "negative campaigns" because the candidate has political ammunition in the sense that he can point out inconsistencies between policies the incumbent pursued previously and what they are saying on the current campaign trail.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Question of the Week: What is the Impact of Corporate News Media Have on American Culture?

Corporate news affects our culture greatly. Most of what people talk about is some thing they saw on TV: a quote from some show, drama from another, or the biggest news story of the day. Since the media is profit-driven, they try to give us, the consumers, what we want and like. Let's get this straight: I have no problem with this, in and of itself. The problem for me is how do they know what I like? Polling and rating rule what the bosses of different companies decide is newsworthy, what the next hit show is, etc. My problem is that I've never been asked to give my input. If these polls are so scientific, and apparently the programming on TV is what everybody wants, why do I feel like 9 out of 10 things on my TV is a bunch of crap? Where do I sign up to be in these "scientific studies?" Corporate media would work, if only we the consumers gave our input more often, in a more detailed manner and if the media would keep an ear closer to the ground to hear what we actually want in media broadcasting.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Obama: A Rockstar That Has Never Produced One Song

The blind support that Barack Obama gets from so many people really scares me. He is a very eliquent speaker and is an extremely nice guy. I don't agree with him on virtually anything, but I'd love to be friends with him. Even so, a person who makes a good friend and can talk really well does not necessarily make a good president. For all his awesome talk, I have yet to hear a solid, detailed plan for anything if he is elected president. The only thing I ever hear from him and his campaign is change, which translates into "I'm not George Bush and I'm just playing on popular public opinion of Bush-hatred to get elected." What details I have heard don't fly well with me: nationalized healthcare (which doesn't decrease the cost of healthcare and only makes us pay for it with taxes), raising taxes (just the thing to help a shoddy economy), massive new government programs that includes expensive healthcare (which, even with huge tax increases will be unaffordable), and additional minimum wage increases (which sounds great, but in reality just increases the unemployment rate because businesses can't afford to hire people). So here's how I see it. People hear these great ideas: healthcare for everyone, programs to fix your every need, and a higher minimum wage. They sound great, but the Obama disciples don't stop to reason how these things will work! People will throw themselves at his feet for his empty promises and rhetoric, but they really need to realize what is going on. Following someone blindly without thinking can only get you hurt.