Strain Out a Gnat and Swallow a Camel: How Reverse Statism Endangers the Republic

If you want to send a message to Washington, you must speak in its language. Washington only comprehends the electorate’s desires based upon the margin of victory between the winning candidate and the losing candidate from the opposing major party.

If Obama wins, third party votes will go unnoticed and unheeded, and liberals will take the victory to be an electoral mandate to buckle down on the policies we don’t want.

Third party votes do not say, “I don’t like either candidate, so I’m voting for a better choice,” but rather, “I’m comfortable enough with the way things are to spend my vote on a losing cause.”

If Romney wins, the message will be that Americans want Obama out of office NOW, and prefer the general direction that Romney is willing to take. The Romney administration will receive this as an electoral mandate to move as far away from Obama’s worldview as possible.

THE PHARISAICAL PATRIOT: "Ugh, that gnat! I'd rather be dragged through the desert than use that filthy blade." (Click to enlarge)

You might think that your one vote in a liberal district is meaningless anyway – although of course if everyone subscribed to that idea and resulting course of action, it would make a huge impact. Even popular vote-wise, every vote for Romney is a slap in the face of Obama. Every vote for a third party candidate is mere graffiti on the wall.

Many third-party voters are humble and well-meaning, and many are just angry and feeling insubordinate. Either way, I ask you to respectfully reconsider the situation. America made one of the worst decisions in her relatively young life four years ago, and to prolong it would be painful for generations to come.

I now present to you a pamphlet on the 2012 election and Mitt Romney’s candidacy. Hopefully it will answer all of your questions.

Romney praying before making a commencement speech. (Jae C. Hong AP)

But Mitt Romney’s a Mormon! (Fear not)

Our White House has been residence to Unitarians, at least one likely Deist, and multiple Freemasons. Is Romney’s Mormonism really any weirder?

Romney walks down the central staircase inside the Statehouse during a ceremony marking the end of his term as governor on Jan. 3, 2007. (Josh Reynolds/AP)

Romnesia: Misconceptions about Romney’s record

Romney is often mocked for being inconsistent. In reality, he has been consistent in a way that would be difficult for most of us.

THREE-WAY WRECK: George H.W. Bush, Ross Perot, and Bill Clinton at the second presidential debate of the 1992 election season. Due to America's mostly winner-take-all system, third parties virtually never win, but can still influence the outcome of elections. Scholars speculate that Perot's candidacy might have given Clinton victory, since Perot garnered 19% of the vote that most likely would have otherwise gone to Bush. (AP Photo/Marcy Nighswander)

Reverse statism: A reality check for voters considering third party

If you think an election that can’t be won with your ideal candidate is an election not worth winning at all, think again.

Also of interest: My research paper “Odd Ones Out: Why Third Parties Don’t Fit in the American Political System“.

Just remember: The Federal Reserve. The United Nations. Osama Bin Laden on the loose. The 2008 Financial Crisis. Obamacare. What do these things have in common? Third party voters along with conservatives and libertarians who refused to vote were complicit in their existence.

UPDATE (11/06/12): Why The Founder Of NotMittRomney.com Has Already Voted For Mitt Romney; Former Libertarian candidate: Mitt Romney is the only sane choice for libertarians.

War Over Women: Hilary Rosen, Ann Romney, and what American women want

Mitt and Ann Romney with their five sons, five daughters-in-law, and sixteen grandchildren. (Romney family photo)

So, here’s my latest column in the Communities at The Washington Times…

Rosen vs. Romney: The equality of homemakers and the relate-ability of presidential candidates

Who really has a “dark ages” viewpoint of stay-at-home motherhood, and what does relate-ability have to do with being qualified to run the executive branch of U.S. government?

“Hilary Rosen might not have intended to slight stay-at-home moms when she said that Ann Romney ‘has never worked a day in her life’. No decent person who has a clue about motherhood would want to do so because it simply makes no sense.

If you have been raised by a stay-at-home-mom (like I have) or have simply observed the fury that ignited in response to Rosen’s comments, you’ve probably been informed that stay-at-home moms work harder than Congress and actually know how to spend within a budget they’ve been assigned. Stay-at-home moms save the government expense by providing childcare (and often education) for their own children.

‘The homemaker has the ultimate career,’ C.S. Lewis is often quoted as saying. ‘All other careers exist for one purpose only – and that is to support the ultimate career.’

As conscientious consumers, homemakers also stimulate the economy by saving for and buying best for their children, and ultimately raising and investing in future taxpayers.

Furthermore, choosing to live within one provider’s income when able to do so opens employment opportunities for others.

That being the case, Rosen might have intended only to say that Mrs. Romney can’t relate to women who work outside of the home and thus cannot relate to typical American economic challenges.

But the problem with this is that Rosen’s conclusion is illogical…”

(Click here to continue reading)

Here are some thoughtful comments I received:

“…People seem to project a lot on Mrs. Romney. Rich woman – must sit around doing nothing, eating bonbons and hiring nannies to raise her sons. Makes me wonder whether her critics even like their own children, since they’re so ready to believe that a mother who could afford not to would make sure not to raise her own children. Mrs. Romney appears to be doing something right – by all accounts her sons are decent, sharp, and have taken advantage of their many opportunities to lead good lives. Not a spoiled Paris Hilton himbo in the lot of them. Money can buy advantages, but it can’t buy character. That’s learned.

Whether the Romneys are good parents doesn’t seem to me to be in doubt. Whether Mitt really understands the problems facing most Americans is another issue, one I expect to see debated a lot. Given the propensity of the Obamas to live large and lavish, I’m not ready to assume they understand “working class” people any better than the Romneys. And given Michelle’s fondness for $2,000 sun dresses and designer fashion, I’m not sure their supporters have much room to make an issue of the Romney houses and lavish living. It would be better all around if we stuck to the issues and accepted the fact that Obama and Romney are both wealthy. Wealth doesn’t preclude empathy or wisdom, and poverty doesn’t grant them.”

- JWPicht

“…All the sound and fury signifying nothing parses “never worked a day in her life” from its context and turns it into an issue  – out-of-the-home-working vs stay-at-home moms – that Rosen never intended. Rosen, as a PR consultant amongst other things, is smart enough to know that you that you don’t attempt to clarify in this situation – it will just sound like back-peddling – you just take the hits and wait for it to blow over. But it’s an artificial debate, manically seized on by right-wing pundits who see that Romney is losing the female vote by the proverbial street.

So let’s get back to the realities behind the gender gap. GOP controlled legislatures, after their big sweep in 2010, have being putting anti-abortion, anti-contraception, anti-equal pay legislation on state law books the length and breadth of the country. Unlike the Rosen controversy, that’s not a manufactured notion. That’s why there’s a gender gap…

- RapidEddie

RapidEddie is making a common mistake by assuming that liberal positions on social issues are all that women really want. Has no one noticed that women are a big part of this “GOP controlled legislature” change?

As I mentioned in an article last year:

“…When I interviewed Kellyanne Conway about the midterm elections last year, I brought up the point that in the House of Representatives, the number of pro-life women increased by 60% while pro-choice women diminished by 16%. There are also more pro-life women governors than abortion rights women governors now.

‘It turns on its head what has been the conventional – albeit false – wisdom that for a woman to prevail in politics, the cost of admission is that she be pro-choice and abortion,” said Conway. “That simply is not true. As America’s voting population has become more pro-life and more conservative generally…that’s being reflected now in the elected officials that they elevate.’…”

 

IT'S NOT JUST WOMEN BEING DEVALUED - IT'S HOME BEING DEVALUED. Historically, home has gone from being the busy hub of work and entertainment for all family members to becoming the place where people are only supposed to hang out when they’re not working (hence the reason why it’s easy to dismiss stay-at-home moms as non-workers). But technological revolutions have started to bring the productivity of home full circle. Perhaps there has never been a better time to be home!

Would You Vote For An Atheist?

But the catch lies in another hypothetical that revealed to me how clever Miss Scanlan really is.  I pondered for a moment – if Thomas Paine or Thomas Jefferson were running against Barack Obama, which candidate would I vote for?  Obama professes to be a Christian, while some evidence suggests that Paine and Jefferson were barely deists.  But I would certainly choose the classical liberal candidates over the socialist “liberal” candidates any day.

Seventeen-year-old Teresa Scanlan made headlines this year as the first homeschooler – and first Miss Nebraska – and first seventeen-year-old to win the Miss America crown. Miss America 2011 is one of seven children, a professed Christian and a future Patrick Henry College student.

Mere minutes after Scanlan’s victory, everyone was all a-Twitter about the fact that the homeschooled conservative Christian had managed to find enough favor in the sight of the judges when among them was the shrill, liberal agnostic Joy Behar. The newly-crowned Miss America was certainly not shy about her faith in Christ at the subsequent press conference. Is it possible that her Christianity was ever questioned in the competition?

The next day Miss America appeared on Fox News with Gretchen Carlson, who was Miss America 1989. Carlson asked Scanlan about the testy interview part of the competition:

CARLSON: In fact one of the questions that you got from one of the judges during your all-important interview – one of the judges, Joy Behar – who may not agree with you politically – she asked you whether or not you could vote for an atheist. And you said…

SCANLAN: I said absolutely. I would definitely base who I vote for based on political policies, not on religion, because if that doesn’t affect their political policies, it’s not going to be something I look at.

Walter Hudson at NewsRealBlog.com speculated that Behar’s question was intended to trip Scanlan much like Perez Hilton’s question did to Miss California USA 2009 Carrie Prejean. Having seen that recent statistics indicate a growing interest in atheistic leaders, Hudson concluded that he himself is in the supposed minority that would not vote for an atheist – with the rare hypothetical exception of the professed Christian being a socialist and the atheist being a Tea Party supporter…

Click here to continue reading at Latitude821.

Obama launches 2012 campaign; Robert Gibbs to be hired by Facebook?

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs briefs reporters at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 14, 2010. (Photo/Stephen Masker)

As President Obama announces his re-election bid, buzz surrounds his former press secretary’s talks with Facebook.

President Obama officially launched his re-election campaign on Monday. This unsurprising news came after last week’s buzz that a particular 2012 campaign consultant might be hired by Facebook: Robert Gibbs.

However much that caused some politically astute Facebook users to raise an eyebrow, there’s no need to delve into the nuances of the scenario here. Let’s just say that helping President Obama’s re-election campaign and working for Facebook sounds convenient…

Click here to continue reading (my rather short and lighthearted article) at The Washington Times Communities.

Moral imaginations, blood libel and the meaning of words

Sarah Palin, Barack Obama

“What is government if words have no meaning?”

Such was the question that Jared Loughner asked Representative Gabrielle Giffords at an event in 2007. Unsatisfied by Giffords’ response (or warranted lack thereof), Loughner targeted her with an apparently vengeful fixation.

The budding thought processes of this anarchical philosopher-wannabe clearly had nothing to do with then-obscure Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck – nor did they have anything to do with the then-nonexistent Tea Party. According to a CBS poll, 57% of Americans agree that today’s political tone did not impact Loughner’s attack. 

It is unlikely that anyone would have seriously considered otherwise had Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik not blamed America’s political climate without evidence (disgracing his status as a law enforcement officer). Left-wing leaning media outlets subsequently seized Dupnik’s talking point with zeal and defined the debate in their favor.

However, just hours later, the primary sources that average citizens have access to via the internet flatly contradicted the politicization.

From online message boards to YouTube videos to the classroom, Loughner demonstrated himself to be a pathological riddler who was angry at the world for refusing to answer his intellectually dishonest questions. As Loughner’s incoherent ramblings and love of conspiracy spiraled downward to senseless bloodshed, King Solomon’s warning proved true – “the lips of a fool consume him; the beginning of his talking is folly and the end of it is wicked madness” (Ecclesiastes 10:12-13).

In response to the tragedy, President Obama’s January 12th speech in Tucson was a bit better than I expected. It was tender, and for the most part above-board and presidential (it is unfortunate that the hooting and hollering disrupted the atmosphere). Obama even dared to go off-script to emphasize that political rhetoric – and “a simply lack of civility” – did not cause the Tucson massacre…

Click here to continue reading at The Washington Times Communities.