Where Did the Statesmen Go?

July 26, 2011 Leave a comment

I’ve just finished watching the President Obama and Speaker Boehner give their prime-time addresses. They both make me sick. They’re two grown men playing Chicken, but it’s the country that will crash. Where did the statesmen go? How the hell did get stuck with these two bozos?

I’ve been warning people about the national debt for well over a decade. And I was glad to see some seriousness being focused on the problem. However, the Republican plan only kicks the can down the road far enough so they can use it as a weapon in the next election cycle.

Both Boehner and Obama want “the people” to send a message to other side. I have a message: “Shut Up, and Do What Is Right for the American People, Not Your Party!”

They both talk about “putting aside partisanship”. Yet, neither of these miserable excuses for leaders could ever put partisanship aside, even if their lives depended on it. Never has confidence in our government been lower. Seeing these two piss-ants posture, moan and lie to our faces has done nothing to change that opinion. Do they really believe we can’t see through their false sincerity?

Where is the adult supervision?

I repeat, “Where is the adult supervision?”

The Party of Who?

January 20, 2011 2 comments

The Party of Lincoln has betrayed the man our country elevated to sainthood. Abraham Lincoln embraced diversity, not simply racial diversity, but also diversity of ideas. He even brought his political opponents into his administration.

The Party of Reagan has betrayed their modern saint of conservatism. While Reagan espoused conservative values, he did it in an affable manner without the vitriol of current conservatives. He insisted the party was a big tent that could hold many viewpoints.

The Republican Party is now the party of Limbaugh and Palin, both of whom have political power without the actual responsibility of governing. They may invoke the names of Lincoln and Reagan, yet trample the principles these men abided by. Both Limbaugh and Palin preach an inflammatory brand of intolerance, yet cloak it in “Americanism”.

In the last two decades, the Republican Party has narrowed its scope, targeting even Republican statesmen who have served their country and party, just because they haven’t drunk the Limbaugh/Palin Kool-Aid. They are derided as RINOs, Republicans In Name Only. (Lincoln, Reagan and even Barry Goldwater would fail the litmus tests set out by the Limbaugh-Palin party.) The Republicans are beginning to look more like a cult than a responsible political party.

Conservatives hate moderates as much as they hate liberals. More than once Limbaugh has urged moderates to leave the party. In 2010, Delaware Republican Mike Castle, a sure winner in the general election was pushed aside in the primary in favor of a more extremist Christine O’Donnell. Castle was a moderate, therefore in conservative eyes, an enemy.

The Democrats haven’t behaved much better. Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann often deride anyone who isn’t a liberal true-believer. Maddow expressed outrage at a group of Democratic senators who dared to express concern over the fiscal responsibility of the stimulus bill. She mockingly called these thoughtful men and women “conservacrats.”

Only 15% of the population identifies themselves as conservative, and only 11% as liberal. That leaves 74% of us that are centrists. Yet, both parties have targeted centrists. Why is a 74% majority being shut out of the political picture? It is time centrists began to stand up and say enough!

The whiplash-inducing left-right swings of the political pendulum create enormous friction with little forward movement. This is why various centrist parties are popping up. People forget Lincoln had another party, the Whig Party, which has reemerged as the Modern Whig Party.

Despite what Sarah Palin says, “Real America” is in the middle, under siege by extremists on both sides. It is time we got outraged and organized.

Categories: Uncategorized

Crazy People, Bullets & Gabrielle Giffords

January 11, 2011 Leave a comment

Yesterday in Tuscon, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot along with several others. Six people are dead, including a federal judge and a nine-year old girl. We don’t know the specific motives of deranged shooter Jared Loughner, but it was quite likely political. I just wonder if this type of shooting may have been inevitable. Why?

During the last decade, the political oratory has become increasingly toxic. Our two-party system has devolved into hyper-partisan warfare. Political opponents have become “evil” enemies. The “wingnuts”, as John Avlon calls them, have hurled the most caustic yet unsupported accusations.

Both Bush and Obama have been compared to Hitler. Even Nixon didn’t get that kind of treatment. Obama has been called a fascist, a communist, as well as the Antichrist. According to right-wing instigators, he is a Muslim, not born in America, and set on executing us all via death panels.

Partisan propagandists like Rush Limbaugh, Keith Olbermann, Glenn Beck, Rachel Maddow, and a host of others, have sought to appeal to our worst fears and emotions, never letting facts interfere with the ratcheting up of the partisan hatred (or ratings). Spin has turned so irrational, that it has made many equally irrational. With all the angst added to a difficult economy, violence was bound to erupt. A number of local congressional offices have already been attacked. With all the crazies out there, sooner or later, somebody was going to get shot.

Maybe it is time everyone dials down the rhetoric. It may not be as exciting or get the same ratings, but maybe rational discourse is the patriotic thing to do rather than the mutual demonization that is currently practiced. Free speech is not free of consequences. For everyone’s sake, let’s keep the crazy talk from reaching the crazy people.

Categories: Uncategorized

America for Sale

October 22, 2010 Leave a comment

Earlier today, Michael Isikoff of NBC News reported there has been an unprecedented amount of hidden campaign contributions being funneled into congressional campaigns leading up to the midterm elections, approximately a quarter of a billion dollars worth. This is being done through a network of ambiguous political action committees. How is this possible?

In January 2010, in a 5-to-4 decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court ruled corporations enjoy the same First Amendment free-speech rights as individuals. Isikof commented we are seeing a return to the “wild west days before Watergate.” Back in January, Fred Worthheimer, president of Democracy 21 declared “This is the most radical and destructive campaign-finance decision in the history of the Supreme Court.” I agree with Isikoff and Worthheimer that the Supreme Court has failed us, undermining the democratic principles of our republic. Many will find it difficult to accept, because it’s relatively hidden deterioration that undermines the democratic principles of our country, like termites eating away at the timbers of a house.

This blog is a perfect example of free speech. Paying legislators with the implicit understanding of how a legislator must vote is bribery. The distinction is clear. How can Congress honestly address the critical issues facing America, if they have to worry about offending their financial benefactors?

With the magnitude of our increasing problems, this corrupt system cannot sustain America. I am not saying the United States will end as an institution. It will merely become the virtual property of the highest bidder.

Is there no hope? As private citizens, we cannot match the financial power of moneyed special interests. However, we still have the power to vote. That is our one hope. However, neither the Democrats nor the Republicans seem inclined to deal with this issue. Switching between two corrupt political parties is not “change.” It is merely moving the deck chairs around on the Titanic.

The only recourse is to seek out rational independent candidates. Please do not fall for the “wasted vote” fallacy. Even if an independent candidate fails to get elected. Significant vote counts will encourage other independent candidates, and put the moneyed power players on notice.

People like Jeff Vanke, who is running for Virginia’s 6th District, offer us hope. Jeff is a man of high integrity, running as a Modern Whig, a party devoted to integrity in government. We need more people like Jeff to run. And we need more dedicated and enlightened citizens to support them.

If we want to end legalized bribery to politicians, the American people must fight to get their country back. As has been said, “Freedom is not free.” I will not allow moneyed special interests to buy my freedom. I will fight to keep it.

Related websites:
www.jeffvanke.com, www.modernwhig.org

Categories: Uncategorized

Hope in Virginia (For All of Us)

August 15, 2010 Leave a comment

While those in Washington suffer dismal public approval ratings, there is hope sprouting next door in Virginia. Jeff Vanke, an Independent candidate dedicated to fiscal responsibility has thrown his hat into the ring, specifically Virginia’s 6th District. Why should citizens of New Jersey (or any other state) care about a House race in Virginia?

Quite simply, the two-party, majority-minority dynamic has created a $14 Trillion National Debt. That is over $46,000 owed by every American man, woman and child, and this number increases every day. Each party, while in the majority, pushes through expenditures on behalf its partisan special interests. Pork-barrel spending on both sides of the aisle runs rampant.

The importance of breaking the major parties’ stranglehold on our government cannot be overstated. We are headed for a fiscal train wreck. The Democrats and Republicans created this problem and show no honest sign of correcting it. Only Independents such as Jeff Vanke provide any chance of avoiding a financial disaster far greater than we are currently facing.

To be sure, this is no easy feat. There has not been an Independent in the U.S. House of Representatives since the 1920s, thanks to the gerrymandering by the two major parties. The Democrats and Republicans have conspired to keep Independents out. Partisan pundits on the Right and Left, such as Rush Limbaugh and Rachael Maddow are quick to attack moderates, because moderates pose a greater threat to them than their polar opposites.

Jeff Vanke has been endorsed by the Modern Whig party and the American Centrist Party. He’s a well balanced candidate, reasonable on a broad range of issues. Vanke’s campaign is focusing on results, not ideology. He has a good chance of winning as he’s polling well with only the incumbent running. I would strongly encourage you to support Jeff Vanke. Our country needs an Independent voice in Congress.

Learn more at www.JeffVanke.com and www.modernwhig.com

Centrists Unite Under Modern Whig Banner

June 22, 2010 4 comments

In a time of such frustration with the American political system, there is a glimmer of hope, a sprout that needs nourishment to be sure, but a movement that is indeed germinating. Two of the largest moderate political movements, the American Centrist Party and the Modern Whig Party have decided to merge.

Mergers are not easy, but in the name of centrist progress, these two champions have put the American people first. Over 46,000 centrists and moderates are uniting under the Modern Whig Party banner. Additional members expected to join this energized movement.

As the Democrats and Republicans continue their polarized rhetoric designed to damage one another, some patriotic Americans are dedicated to finding another way. Many moderate parties have smaller infrastructures, yet are expanding, as the dissatisfaction with the Washington “blame game” grows.

Why is this merger important? With a National Debt that has escalated under both major parties, Americans must find another party to bring common sense and fiscal restraint to government. With special interests legally bribing politicians with campaign contributions, Americans must find a party that demonstrates a higher integrity. Uniting centrists and moderates is essential to bringing the United States back from the partisan tribal warfare that has afflicted our country.

Established in 1833, the Whigs are one of America’s oldest mainstream political parties. They were the original party of Abraham Lincoln and four other U.S. Presidents. Revived by Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, the grassroots movement has quickly attracted tens of thousands of members. They represent moderate voters from all walks of life that cherry-pick between traditional Democratic and Republican ideals, or can choose another path, in what has been called the Modern Whig Philosophy.

While many of the news outlets may pay little attention to this merger, it is an extremely important grass roots event. The Modern Whig party is expected to seek further mergers to unite centrists and moderates.

To learn more about the merged party, go to www.modernwhig.org/

Manipulation, Arm-Twisting, & Bribery (Our Government at Work)

March 21, 2010 1 comment

This healthcare bill is bad legislation. Why? The quality of any bill is inversely proportional to the number of arms that have to be twisted. And we’ve seen some spectacular arm-twisting bribery, (Cornhusker Kickback, Louisiana Purchase, et al). Add to that, the parliamentary manipulation being used by Nancy Pelosi. Would such a good bill require all this? Of course not.

Nancy Pelosi promised the most ethical Congress ever. Does this manipulation put her in a gray area? (Charcoal gray at least.) What is most offensive is that the Democrats are saying this bill will reduce the deficit. This will only happen if Congress actually keeps the promised cuts that are only supposed to take effect years from now. These cuts can be reversed quite easily, and probably will be by a future Congress. Once again our government puts off the hard stuff to the next generation.

Government programs only expand; they almost never contract. Congress and the bureaucrats have no incentive to reduce costs or be more efficient. They are not allowed incentive bonuses. The only way for a bureaucrat to financially benefit or advance is to expand their responsibilities or increase their empire. The era of Big Government is building its strongest fortification yet.

Designed to Fail (For a Reason)

This bill will increase taxes on insurance companies, and prevent them from denying coverage for preexisting conditions (the latter of which I approve). How many insurance companies will be forced into bankruptcy because of this? Could this is a part of a larger plan to destroy the insurance industry, making a public option more viable? Don’t get me wrong; I have no love for the insurance industry. But that’s a far cry from wanting it destroyed.

If one looks at the massive fraud involved in Medicare, imagine how much more that would increase with a public option. Any counter-measure would require many more workers to ferret out the explosive fraud. Either way, it’s an huge increase in governmental expenditures. And many see the public option as merely stepping stone to universal healthcare. Don’t believe me? Watch the Barney Frank video clip below.

Republicans Not Without Blame

In case anyone was thinking I was a shill for the conservatives, think again. The Republicans led us here. They ignored the issue of making healthcare more efficient. In fact, President Bush added to the problem by expanding Medicare. Elsewhere, the Republicans took a hands-off approach to business which led to a whole host of problems. All this could have been avoided, but the Republicans sat on their free-market hands, believing their right-wing extremism was a virtue, and the left-wing extremism was the only enemy.

Now, they’re reduced to whining about parliamentary procedure.

Categories: Healthcare