May 2013

Getting it Half Right

By Liberal Anthropologist

The BSA adjusted its policy to allow openly gay scouts to participate:

“No youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone”.

This is great and I am so happy this has happened. All children can benefit from scouts. All my children are in it and one is an Eagle so far. I can’t say enough about how much the program does that helps boys have fun and become men.

We need to go the rest of the way. There are good parents who are openly gay who deserve to be scout leaders and from whom our children can learn much. And I don’t mean anything sexual. Sexual matters are completely irrelevant to scouting as sex is not a subject of the program (outside of Child Safety training).

I have been advocating for this for some time and have had several people in the blogosphere say that scouting is what it is and if I don’t like it, I should go form another group that allows gays. Well…. Scouting is NOW accepting of openly gay scouts. And will shortly allow openly gay leaders. Should I say it is your turn to go find another organization? I won’t. I want to see your kids get the benefits that scouts offer – just like every other kid.

By the way, Scouting has excellent Islamic and Jewish troops and programs. My kids are in a regular and excellent local troop, but I know the Islamic troop leaders and they run excellent troops.  This weekend there is a joint Jewish and Muslim Camporee at Camp Snyder that I will be attending.  It will be fun and strengthen the bond between our two communities.

I would be interested in knowing how many other on here are or were involved in scouts.  I never was a scout as a kid, but involved my kids and have been very happy.  One Eagle, One First Class, and One Webelo.

Know Your Rights

By Liberal Anthropologist

I have occasionally railed at the mistake of the Loudoun County police in performing DUI checkpoints.  In addition to the fact that nobody HAS to submit to their questions, it is simply a waste of time and police resources that are better served by driving the roads looking at driving behaviour.  I have posted previously, but multiple studies have shows a greater per man hour rate of catching drunk drivers through patrol than through checkpoints.

I have taken to refusing to answer ANYTHING that the Loudoun County police ask me when they set one of these up.  And of course they cannot do anything about it.  They cannot detain me without probable cause and since I never drink EVER, then they never have that cause.  I also do not need to answer any of their questions without an attorney present.  I recommend that other citizens do the same until they wise up and stop harassing law abiding citizens.  I plan to videotape the next checkpoint I happen to go through.  Just as a reminder, in Virginia, you have to:

1] Stop

2] Provide identity and insurance information

3] Nothing else.  You can politely refuse to answer ANY questions they ask you.  They have no right to question you.

They will shortly let you go on your way as long as you don’t have a warrant or a broken taillight or something.

To me, this is like the targeting of law abiding gun owners with unnecessary checks, questions, rules and laws that do nothing to stop criminal use of guns.  There is a reason that probable cause is required and more people should require the police to show it when they are engaging in random questioning.  It is time to stop wasting our tax payer money on these exercises.  And it is wrong.  Go after criminals, and leave law abiding citizens alone.

By the way, if you like the above DUI video, check out these videos of the annoying California checkpoints being refused.  They are even more unconstitutional than the DUI ones due to constitutional protection to freely move between states.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vR7nQnSTIYY

PS: I should be clear that I am aware of the Supreme Court ruling on the constitutionality of DUI checkpoints.  It was one of the many nonsensical rulings of the Supreme Court over the years.  It should be overturned.  11 states have banned DUI checkpoints as being against their state equivalent of the 4th amendment.  Virginia’s constitution needs a serious overhaul.

Tag Greason’s 2013 opponent is Liz Miller

By Joe Budzinski

Virginia Delegate Tag Greason is undoubtedly relieved he won’t endure the loneliness of another unopposed campaign. Liz Miller has announced she will be running as an independent for the 32nd district seat in the House of Delegates.

She reportedly will seek the endorsement of the local Democratic Party. The Democrats’ Howard Dean inspired program to challenge for every office at every level will certainly find a logical starting point in Virginia’s 2013 elections: a bellwether state with many bellwether localities, a purple state, and generally on political junkies’ radar just because we all so crazy bout the politics. (New Jersey also has elections but won’t attract a lot of national attention because, well, New Jersey).

Even though not running as a Democrat, Ms. Miller helps fill the slate of challengers to local Republican office holders.

“Off year” elections in Virginia are typically a circus, though generally of the Cole Bros. variety; in 2013, we’re poised to go full Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey. Having an outspoken activist and blogger like Ms. Miller join the fray locally ensures excitement, debate and blog traffic in Loudoun County.

Weather is NOT Climate

By Liberal Anthropologist

Barbara Boxer showed today, why despite my disappointment with Mr. Jackson, I tend to almost always vote for Republicans.  In a speech on the floor she took the wildly anti-science position that the tornadoes seen recently were connected to Global Warming:

“This is climate change. We were warned about extreme weather. Not just hot weather. But extreme weather. When I had my hearings, when I had the gavel years ago. -It’s been a while – the scientists all agreed that what we’d start to see was extreme weather. And people looked at one another and said ‘what do you mean? It’s gonna get hot?’ Yeah, it’s gonna get hot. But you’re also going to see snow in the summer in some places. You’re gonna have terrible storms. You’re going to have tornados and all the rest. We need to protect our people. That’s our number one obligation and we have to deal with this threat that is upon us and that is gonna get worse and worse though the years.”

The opportunism is breathtaking.  We are experiencing one of the coldest years in a while.  Temperatures have statistically stalled for 15+ years.  Tornadoes are declining and have been for years and this year are even below that declining average.    And then she has the audacity to say that all scientists agree we that global warming would cause extreme weather.

This is absolutely and completely and unequivocally false.  A few scientists have HYPOTHESIZED that warming could lead to more extreme weather.  A few have HYPOTHESIZED that weather would get LESS extreme.  Most have said that the two are only tenuously connected and little can be said.  I can cite ONLY left leaning and even people who want to see carbon limited and they will all agree that there has been no change in extreme weather.  If anything,  it is declining.   See here from the New York Times pro-Carbon limiting, AGW promoting reporter:

“Any influence of climate change on dangerous tornadoes (so far the data point to a moderating influence) is, at best, marginally relevant and, at worst, a distraction.”

Or this from a liberal, pro-carbon limiting climate scientist:

“Have global weather disasters become worse? As a proportion of global GDP since 1990, the answer is No—> ”

As long as the democrats continue to promote this anti-science cult of Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming and use it to drive policies that hurt the poor and the economy in general, they are more dangerous than any of the nonsense the Republicans occasionally put up.

Democrats need to stand up and shut down the so-called “Progressive” (actually regressive) wing of their party and start to embrace the conservative, small government democrats in their ranks.  They would be unstoppable.  But as long as they continue to embrace statist solutions to non-problems, they will lose the votes of even socially liberal Republicans like me.  I would rather vote for a social conservative than a statist liberal.  They are less dangerous to me and my children’s future.

 

 

E.W. Jackson Needs to Step Down for the Sake of Cuccinneli

By Liberal Anthropologist

I have been looking at the statements and positions of Jackson over the last few days. It is critical that Conservative Republicans win in the state of Virginia and the process we have just used is a failure. We have put forth someone who has already embarrassed the candidate for governor and will only continue to. I have watched him speak and read his writings. And while he says many things which are smart and conservative, he is clearly not a true and consistent conservative and wishes to use government to achieve his particular pet goals.  He says things which are outrageous and frankly unintelligent.  See this for example:

http://youtu.be/Z70pb4jXk_o

“At worst an atheist and a Muslim”.   As if those things are bad?!  Note the source and date.  Because this man was not vetted he will have his words plastered all over TV and will hurt a deserving Republican candidate.  His mouth runneth over with idiotic comments like these.  This is particularly true with regards to homosexuality where he engages in gay bashing at least as bad as our friend in Sterling.  He will turn off huge swaths of the electorate and that is even if he doesn’t say another word until after the election.

This is unacceptable in a conservative candidate. This is the agenda of right wing, statist liberals who have invaded the Republican party with their version of government interference in private lives.  They are little different or better than a leftist statist liberal.

Cuccinelli deserves a real partner and his party has failed him.  TEA party conservatives like me cannot stand by and let this kind of hijacking of our movement occur without saying clearly that people like Jackson so not represent us and are not welcome.

Jackson must RAPIDLY step down and give way to someone who represents small government conservatism and who will not become the SUBJECT and a huge distraction in the election.

Let me be clear that I will still vote for Cuccinnelli.  His opponent is far worse for the advance of small government ideals.  But this is a huge turn off and Cuccinnelli may well lose because of this kind of foolishness on the part of Republicans.

Truly disappointing.

E.W. Jackson is the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor

By Joe Budzinski

E. W. Jackson pulled off an impressive feat Saturday which likely will have a number of people wake up Sunday wondering what just happened.

None of the political experts forecasting the convention that I know of gave Jackson a chance of being more than a kingmaker. In fact he won convincingly on all four ballots. To win the nomination required 50% plus one vote.

First ballot, against six others, he took 31% of the weighted vote, significantly more than double his closest contender. Second ballot, with Devolites-Davis and Martin out, Jackson had a slightly higher percentage that was again double the next highest.

Third ballot, against heavy favorites Corey Stewart and Pete Snyder, Jackson pulled 49.7%, which was almost double (70 votes shy) the combined total of his two opponents.

Final fourth ballot result: Jackson 61%, and Snyder conceded.

The process seemed to take longer than necessary – nine hours from the first ballots cast until the final result. First ballot result was not announced until about four hours had passed.

There seemed to be some rather extreme FUBAR involving endorsements and announcements of shifting support as candidates dropped out. I don’t know if we will get the full story on all of that, or a behind the scenes explanation of why that first vote took so long to count. Maybe we don’t need those explanations now, but they will have to come from people a lot more plugged in than me, anyway.

Virginia’s Republicans have an impressive ticket for this fall, and in the coming days and weeks it will be apparent what a game changer E.W. Jackson can turn out to be.

The Case For E.W. Jackson

By Joe Budzinski

Do you sometimes feel like you are banging your head against a wall?

Are you concerned that so many of your fellow Americans are oblivious to the dangerous path our country is following?

There is actually a simple explanation, and simple solution, for this problem: Most Americans don’t see what you you see. The only way this is going to change is for more Americans to see the same reality.

But our “arguments” from citizens and the vast majority of our politicians are not bringing them over. Ninety-nine percent of what passes for debate is people smacking each other with buzzwords and talking points written by others. Our shibboleths are mightier than yours. Our columnists and bloggers are wiser and wittier. Our facts trump yours.

Rare are the individuals who can speak above the din – over the heads of the media gatekeepers – and change how people think, because it takes more than the ability to give a good speech. It takes clear, deep understanding. But to really change minds requires an empathetic vision, seeing the world as one’s listeners see it, and arguing from there.

In E.W. Jackson, Virginians have the chance to put someone in office who actually can help course correct our nation – and help elect Ken Cuccinelli in the process – because he can convey true information the media tries to squelch. He can reach audiences that most of us will never get near, especially during an election year, to make the case for Republican candidates.

E.W. Jackson is one of the most compelling public speakers the Republican Party has ever been blessed with, with no teleprompter and no fear of interviews. He has been seen by thousands at rallies and millions on national TV. His Stand America effort drew attention from across the country – making the outrageously politically incorrect case that for black Christians “it is time to end the slavish devotion to the Democrat party.”

How many Republicans could do this or this and live, politically, to see another day?

Unique among the candidates, Bishop Jackson gets it, that there are people who share our values, and this Lt. Governor candidacy and office can provide

…. a platform to help those people understand why they belong with us. Folks, if we don’t do it we’re going to lose this state, we’re going to lose our country.

Obama and his machine are on the march and they have a very different vision. He never talks about freedom because that’s not important to him. What’s important to him is government control, government largesse, government dictates, government executive orders seeking to fundamentally transform our country.

But there are people all over the Commonwealth who share our values and they’re voting against us because they’ve become convinced that we hate them.

Candidate mail: It's hard to stand out when you are one of seven, the office you are running for is viewed widely as a stepping stone, and the differences between most of you are few.

While the other Lt. Governor candidates all seem like decent people – who really want the office – among quite a few of these it looks like the usual parade of consultants, endorsements and talking points. The Lt. Governor job arguably does not do a whole lot, but it provides one heck of a stepping stone for someone with political ambition. The way some of these candidates have leapt into the fray, teeth bared, daggers flying, is yet another confirmation that politics sure can bring out the worst. And the sheer paltriness of the debate – over matters such as who has, technically, raised taxes more or less than the others – seems akin to making blood feuds over tiddly winks.

Our nation is going down the tubes, and our mailboxes sag with political flyers bearing buzzwords.

What Virginia needs and this country needs is someone who will be heard above the media spin. Someone talking beyond the buzzwords of conservatism. “Values” and “principles” don’t mean much to audiences that don’t have a clue what you are talking about.

While I hate to evoke yet another current shibboleth, the Ronald Reagan comparison is apt – because what Reagan accomplished was to communicate his beliefs clearly enough that listeners who shared those beliefs could recognize them as their own. That is the type of persuasiveness E.W. Jackson brings.

He understands the true importance of this nomination.

In his own words:

They are sharks and they smell blood in the water. They’ve got our two US Senate seats, and they want the governor’s mansion badly. We’ve got have leadership that can bring us together AND broaden our coalition … We can’t keep doing what we’ve been doing and expect to be a winning party.

While communication is not the only thing, it is something. And it is important that we be able to communication our message …. There are lots of people out there who share our values, share our views, but who’s communicating with them?

I’m working with these black ministers. I’m working with Hispanic pastors. I’m going into these Filipino communities and Asian communities. If you give me the nomination I guarantee I will be out there campaigning in these areas making our case to these folks in a way that I believe they can relate to and understand.

E.W. Jackson can use the platform provided by the Lt. Governor nomination to make a big difference in this election season and beyond. In fact, the only really important question to be answered at the convention is whether or not E.W. Jackson will be on the ballot in November.

Convention week. Yay.

By Joe Budzinski

As with the tin man of old, I found that a few shots of oil in key joints can bring this blog creaking back to life. And what better time?

It’s the week of the Republican nominating convention here in Virginia, and here in Virginia voting is what we do. That, and attending fundraisers.

And, reading political direct mail, which is all produced by the same marketing firm headquartered in Singapore.

It’s good for the US Postal Service; it’s good for the campaign “consultants”; it’s good for our compost heaps; and it’s damn good for the Singaporeans.

But what makes this convention interesting is the fact it will center on the skirmish for the office that 99 out of 100 Virginians believe is a character from the Smokey and the Bandit films.

And there will be blood.

Interesting

By Too Conservative

Post up at Virginia Virtucon re: some anonymous videos up attacking Corey Stewart.