Friday March 25 , 2016
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Connecting the Dots

Over the next several weeks, I and other like-minded Iowans are going to begin the process of building a network of conservatives across the state.  Given the state of activity in Iowa, many of us feel it is time to start building a strong network of individuals who will be willing to work to advance conservative principles.  We are going to take on four tasks—communicate, educate, advocate and activate.


Above all else, conservatives must open lines of communication.  We must do our best to identify, cultivate and maintain contacts.  Once we have identified those who are on board and those who want to be on board, we need to provide a clear, concise message that advances conservative principles.  There is an audience and we need to be the messengers.  Advancing conservative principles is as much missionary work as it is anything.  We must go to all corners of the state and witness to those who will listen.


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Liberty in our Time

I have been tied up with finishing the year at school, so I apologize for being absent from here for so long.


We held a great event celebrating citizenship yesterday at our local air and transportation museum.  I had prepared remarks about what expectations we should have of each other as citizens, particularly give the circumstances in which we find ourselves.  I had pages of notes and had even practiced a bit.  However, when I got there and after the program began to unfold, I trashed the prepared remarks and spoke about something I had been kicking around for months.  Though we talk about freedom a great deal and find freedom of speech, religion, assembly, petition and press all in our First Amendment, we must expand the view of our Founding to include discussion about liberty and what that term really means.


I think liberty is a much larger, more inclusive concept than freedom.  We have freedom to do a host of things.  In many countries, however, the concept of freedom is quite different from what we might think in America.  In societies that are much more centrally controlled, freedom does not have the same bounce or resonance.  We take our freedom for granted, I fear, thus we must frame our arguments differently, especially given the assault on our Constitution by the progressives.


Read more: Liberty in our Time


The Cynical Reversal on Marriage

Yesterday, the 9th of May, 2012, the president of the United States announced that he had reversed his personal views on gay marriage.  He now supports gay marriage when just four years ago he was against altering the social convention that has existed for thousands of years.  There are many reasons why the president reversed himself, but first and foremost, he needed to shore up his base.  In just 90 minutes after the announcement, his campaign picked up a cool one million dollars.  All the gay money in Hollywood may have been sitting on the sidelines until such time as the president “manned up” on the topic.  No one had any doubt where he really stood—he just had to play it down the middle as long as he could.  I think his campaign is in real trouble and getting the base and media riled up is absolutely necessary if he is to have any chance at winning re-election.


In 32 state-wide referenda, gay marriage has been defeated every time, including twice in California.  In North Carolina on Tuesday some 61% of the people voted for a constitutional amendment that clearly defined marriage as between one man and one woman.  The amendment acknowledged other private arrangements for legal purposes, but marriage was to be defined specifically.  The Tar Heels already had a law preventing gay marriage (passed 16 years ago), so this was just an affirmation of their popular beliefs.


The GLBT community leadership continues to cast those who are against changing the definition of marriage as being bigoted and hind bound.  Of course, the media advances the same narrative, fully intending to suppress discussion on the topic.  Worse, those who hold homosexuality as a moral difficulty are branded as being extreme right wing religious zealots.  Curiously, one seldom hears that the African-American and Hispanic voters were the ones that put California’s latest vote on gay marriage over the top.  That’s right, two constituencies taken for granted as voting for Obama and democrats hve a great deal of difficulty with gay marriage.  Such changes to social standards are antithetical.


More often than not, the LGBT leadership try to conflate the seeking of 14th Amendment protections with changing the institution of marriage.  The goal is to establish GLBT behavior as protected from discrimination by the 14th Amendment.  This is problematic on a number of levels.  I will discuss the marriage side of this argument later on.


Read more: The Cynical Reversal on Marriage


Principles vs. Ideology

At the risk of being esoteric, I want to address something that we will need to develop over a series of posts on this website.  At the most basic level, one must recognize that there are differences between how conservatives see the world and how progressives—and others—pursue power to transform society.  In essence, that is the difference between conservatism and progressivism.  Conservatives live by a set of principles where prudence is the hallmark.  They see each of us as individuals, independent, free and able to pursue the life we choose based on our unique set of talents.  Progressives, on the other hand, wish to pursue a perfected, “progressing” society.  They believe that man can be perfected, but there are only a few who can or should guide the transformation of society to that heightened state.  Of course, such perfection means that everyone must be the same, so the core belief of progressives is that all must be treated to equal outcomes.  This, as we know, is not possible in a free society.


The progressive movement is based on a deception.  That deception is that what they purport to seek is not possible in a free society.  Thus, progressives must insidiously enslave the society in order to change it to their design.  The enslavement can be one shrouded in a sense of well-being, because progressives wish to provide for all our needs.  The state becomes the ultimate authority in our lives, and we will bend to the state or we will be cast aside.  As the state can punish as easily as it can reward, to resist will end badly for the individual citizen.


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So Much to Do--So Little Time

This has been a heck of a month, and we still have a week to go.  Santorum suspended his campaign, we have had movement in the Martin case, we had one of the largest "coffees" ever and yesterday, we were in Fort Dodge, IA, for the 4th Congressional District GOP district convention.  All in all, a lot to digest.

Yesterday was perhaps the most interesting.  I was asked to be the permanent chair of the district convention.  Chris Mason, the temporary chair, got us through the prliminary stuff in good shape, but when it came to electing the permanent chair (me), we got our first taste of what was to be the trend for the early part of the meeting--constant interruptions on parliamentary procedure and attempts to dominate the floor debate.  I did not have any opposition, but I was not unanimously elected either.  This was a harbinger of other votes to follow.  To make a long story short, we took over an hour to get past a debate on the rules of the convention, but things worked out OK.  I will say that I got a lot of input from well-intentioned people, but I didn't get much output from a lot of folks who seemed to think they were actually in charge.  Of course, as the day wore on, things seemed to smooth out.  I had some great friends there, and they made things a lot easier.

Our elected officials were to be limited in the time they could speak, but I was not about to cut off the governor, our congressman, one of our senators, the secretary of state, or our national committee people.  So, things went a little long.  At the end of the day, however, we were only about an hour over what we had projected.  All in all, a really good experience.

Read more: So Much to Do--So Little Time


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