Two Twenty-Year Incumbents Primaried Out
From the Washington Post:
Two twenty year GOP incumbents beat in a primary...in Virginia. It goes to show you that if enough people are paying attention and really care about the direction of their country and state, the largest tax increase in a state's history can actually have electoral consequences, even if every elected Republican in the State backs the tax-hiker. Viva la taxpayer!
Leadership Institute's July 4th Conservative Soire
Since 1972, conservatives have celebrated Independence Day at the National Fourth of July Conservative Soiree.
Join the Leadership Institute and other sponsoring conservative organizations for the 42nd annual soiree -- the best family party of the year!
You'll enjoy delicious barbeque; a bluegrass band; patriotic speakers; and a balloon artist, face-painting, and a moonbounce for the kids.
Lindsey Graham: All that is Wrong with GOP
Washington Times | GOP Sen. Graham says he’s ‘glad’ NSA is collecting phone records
Sen. Lindsey Graham said Thursday that he is “glad” that the National Security Agency is collecting millions of telephone records — including his own — from one of the nation’s largest telecommunications companies in an attempt to combat terrorism.
Mr. Graham said that he is a Verizon customer and has no problem with the company turning over records to the government if it helps it do its job. The South Carolina Republican said that people who have done nothing wrong have nothing to worry about because the NSA is mining the phone records for people with suspected ties to terrorism.
“We are very much under threat. Radical Islam is on the rise throughout the region. Homegrown terrorism is one of my biggest concerns. It is happening in our own backyard, and I am glad that NSA is trying to find out what terrorists are up to overseas and inside the country,” Mr. Graham said during an appearance on “Fox and Friends.”
Mr. Graham’s comments came shortly after the White House broke its silence on a news report in the Guardian, a newspaper in the United Kingdom, that said the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court granted the FBI a highly classified court order that requires that Verizon turn over on an “ongoing, daily basis” information on all telephone calls in the system to the NSA, including those calls made in the US as well as those between the U.S. and other countries.
Property Rights Battle in Middleton
Ok, maybe the word “battle” is an inappropriate use of the term at this point but the headline sure is catchy. Here is a little background into what my wife I are facing here in Middleton and what the future holds.
We recently moved from Caldwell to Middleton. I wanted some more land to be able to have a big garden, raise chickens, rabbits, or other self sufficient things that we have forgotten in America. We did nearly everything we could to get the perfect house and spot for such an endeavor. But we cannot always get everything we want. One of those things that we did in buying our new house was purchase a home with an HOA. We tried to avoid this but it could not be done with all the other variables we were looking for. No big deal we thought, we are moving into “farm country.” Big mistake on our part.
It turns out that our HOA CC&R’s prohibit the raising of “poultry”, rabbits, and any other animal that is considered a “farm animal”. Additionally, the city of Middleton says that a resident cannot have more than 4 total animals. So if you have 2 dogs, you can only have 2 chickens, regardless of lot size. If you have 2 dogs and 2 chickens then you cannot have any rabbits. What? I thought I moved to “Farmville” Idaho and was flabbergasted that in rural Idaho, I was being restricted on these items. I take full responsibility for not looking at these items prior to my purchase. I suppose I had too much faith in my new city and neighborhood’s protection of property rights.
I have spoken with both the mayor of Middleton and the HOA board. All of them seem to be sympathetic to a much needed change. The mayor asked me to come up with a proposal to change the ordinance and the HOA board said that if it is my backyard, no one is really going to know. I told them thank you for their support but the time to make changes is now, before a bad mayor or a bad HOA board is in place. The time to expand private property rights is now while we have the chance. They agreed, at least verbally.
I intend to go through the CC&R’s and the city ordinances to come up with proposals to begin giving back Middleton residents and my fellow neighbors in the Park Place subdivision their property rights. I encourage all Idaho residents to begin doing the same in their area.
"Bi-Partisan Framework" Opposed
The ACP opposes the "Bi-Partisan Framework" being orchestrated by Marco Rubio in the Senate:
"The American Conservative Party stands opposed to the bipartisan "statement of principles" from a group of senators, which gives illegal immigrants a clear path to citizenship.
While we understand there is a need to address the issue of 11 million illegal aliens already in our country, the first step in any reform starts with securing our border and enforcing existing immigration laws. Any actions other than these first steps is just more smoke and mirrors by politicians hoping to gain political security at the expense of national security.
Though the latter three bulletpoints sound great, the first one kills any possibility of true reform because it doesn't establish criteria for what "secure borders" actually mean. Further, the other three points can be accomplished without creating a new powerful magnet for illegal immigration. Americans cannot afford an additional 11 million dependents when we can't afford the existing entitlement system we have now."
Fill out the form below to get involved!
Tax Reform is Not Enough
Recent scandals have exposed for all to see what many have long suspected: the IRS is a corrupt organization that engages in bullying American taxpayers. With this fresh reminder, there have come new calls for eliminating the IRS altogether. This would require a reforming of the tax code. The two most discussed models for a new tax system are the flat tax or a consumption-based Fair Tax. While either would be preferable to the current system, tax reform is not in itself a panacea to cure our national ills.
While either the most popular tax reform models could stimulate the economy and make paying taxes simpler and less cumbersome, they do nothing to address the problems of runaway Federal spending or the vast expansion of Federal power over individuals. Even if real tax reform was considered, it would quickly be dismissed unless it was revenue neutral. In short, revenue neutrality means the new tax model must continue to bring in the same amount of money as the old system. In other words, the new tax system must continue to feed the insatiable behemoth that is our Federal government.
I propose an alternative. There is a tax reform model that would not only rid us of the IRS, but it would also be an effective first step in reducing government spending and government power. This tax model is so radical; it is prescribed by the Founders in the Constitution. It is called State Apportionment. This model would push the responsibility for collecting taxes back down to each state, which would in turn pay the appropriate amount to the Federal government for the national government to continue to function.
The real power of this model is how it changes the relationship between the states and the federal government. The Founders intended for the states to have a stake in how big and powerful the Federal government became. The expectation was that states would rein in federal growth and power, preferring to keep those responsibilities and powers for themselves.
Near the beginning of the 20th Century, that changed. States began to cede responsibility to the federal government in exchange for federal largesse. The 16th Amendment and the income tax made that paradigm shift possible and inescapable. If the states have to resume the responsibility (and catch the heat) for collecting taxes, then they will be less sanguine about a bloated federal budget. Indeed, they will begin to clamor for a smaller federal government and greater oversight.
The result will be a return to a Constitutional approach to government and taxation. States will resume their duties rather than shirking them off to the federal government.
It’s more than either a flat tax or a Fair tax can deliver on their own.
Washington Post Sees Angle in Virginia
In the Virginia race for Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General this November, the Democratic Party sees an angle to effectively distract from the fact that the Democratic Governor candidate (former DNC Chairman Terry McAulliffe) is about as much of a Virginian as Jesse Ventura.
From the Washington Post:
...Jackson’s words — sometimes eloquent, sometimes raw, often impassioned — are causing anxiety for many Republicans as the resurfacing of his past statements about homosexuality and abortion have threatened to disrupt the campaign.
Instead of promoting their new ticket, Republicans have answered for Jackson’s once calling gays “perverted” and “sick” and saying Planned Parenthood has been “far more lethal” to blacks “than the KKK.”
“The Republicans I’m talking to are saying, ‘What the hell are they doing in Virginia?’ ” said Michael Steele, former chairman of the Republican National Committee. “Is this, ‘101 ways to lose an election’? You’re coming out of the gate with comments everyone has to explain. You’re wasting a lot of time and energy batting that back when you should be doing other things to get the guy known.”
Now, the validity of the concern -- substantively and politically -- notwithstanding, what it's REALLY all about is this:
That said, the Democrats could face a difficult political climate by fall. Low-turnout, off-year elections have strongly favored the GOP in recent cycles. At the top of the ticket, McAuliffe has to overcome criticisms that he’s not a “real” Virginian, but an ambitious, national figure who’s seeking office in the commonwealth because he happens to live in McLean.
The outlandish language from the GOP’s No. 2 candidate gives the Democrats an unexpected opening to counterpunch.
In other words, "Thank God, we have a good bit of ammunition to distract voters from the real issues on which the Democratic candidate has nothing really to say. It would have been terrible if we didn't have the ability to throw around "war on women" ads like we did in 2012. Whew."
(The Virginia Conservative Party has not yet endorsed any candidate for statewide office for 2013; so stay tuned in the coming weeks.)
What This Says About Big Labor
While Republicans are off trying to rebrand themselves it is often asked, "how can the Republican Party make inroads with labor unions?"
That is an easy answer to give. Republicans can't, but conservatives can.
In the years since 1981, Labor has been on the decline. In 1980, labor unions had 21 million workers that made up 20 percent of the labor force. By 1990, those numbers dropped to 16 million and 13.3 percent. Today those numbers are barely at 15 million and 10 percent.
A lot of former union members are conservative, and many current unions members are too. These are individuals who do not want to be associated with the labor movement or either do not agree with them ideologically. Moreover, once labor lost a huge part of their bargaining power after Reagan fired 12,000 air traffic controllers in 1981, the need and appeal for organized labor diminished. The Scott Walker victory over labor in Wisconsin showed that, especially when nearly 40 percent of labor members supported him (or households with labor members).
As states and municipalities continue to struggle with debt, and the unions continue to squeeze more money from tax payers for higher wages and benefits; the quicker their inevitable destruction.
The GOP cannot not pull labor from the Democrats, but conservatives can. Conservatives only need to continue to educate the public on the unsustainable fiscal course the country is on and the negative influence labor poses for reform. They need to expose the destructive ties between the Democrat Party and Labor. Wisconsin proved that people are now inclined to listen and labor lacks enough influence -- and what it does possess is looked on unfavorably -- to warrant any strategic inroads at the expense of the economy and taxpayers.