Max Baucus on Obamacare’s hidden agenda – redistribution of wealth

Thursday, March 25, 2010
Posted by: Hugh Hewitt at 5:08 PM

Max Baucus is the Chair of the Senate Finance Committee, and the Democrat most responsible fo Obamacare’s final shape other than Nancy Pelosi.

In an unusual speech on the Senate floor moments ago, Max Baucus declares that the “healthcare bill” to be  “an income shift, it is a shift, a leveling to help lower income middle income Americans.”  Baucus continued, “[t]oo often, much of late, the last couple three years the mal-distribution of income in America is gone up way too much, the wealthy are getting way, way too wealthy, and the middle income class is left behind.  Wages have not kept up with increased income of the highest income in America.  This legislation will have the effect of addressing that mal-distribution of income in America.”

Max Baucus on Obamacare’s hidden agenda – redistribution of wealth
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY4Qbv7gPbo&feature=player_embedded

Baucus’ candor is appreciated, though the fact that he waited until the bill passed to announce the real agenda behind the massive tax hikes isn’t a profile in courage.  And the seniors on fixed income who are about to lose Medicare Advantage would laugh at Baucus’ pseudo-populism.

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Senator Feinstein’s Iraq conflict of interest

Senator Feinstein’s Iraq conflict of interest

Category: Anti-war, Dianne Feinstein — Bob Morris @ 12:23 am

Expose corruption

Sen. Dianne Feinstein has been forced to resign as chair of the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee after news of her grotesque conflicts of interest surfaced due to the billions of dollars going in defense contracts to her husband’s companies.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein has resigned from the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee. As previously and extensively reviewed in these pages, Feinstein was chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years, during which time she had a conflict of interest due to her husband Richard C. Blum’s ownership of two major defense contractors, who were awarded billions of dollars for military construction projects approved by Feinstein.

The story was broken by Metroactive, a group of alternative weeklys in northern California, who have complete coverage. Why is it that an alt weekly was the only one who could figure out what was happening? Earth to CNN and NY Times, you just didn’t have a clue, huh? More important, why was she even allowed on the committee and allowed to vote? Why didn’t she recuse herself from votes where she and her husband benefit financially? Why did no one in the Senate of either party object?

It gets worse.

It turns out that Blum also holds large investments in companies that were selling medical equipment and supplies and real estate leases—often without the benefit of competitive bidding—to the Department of Veterans Affairs, even as the system of medical care for veterans collapsed on his wife’s watch.

I shudder to think what would happen if those two got involved in the orphanage business.

Corruption and conflicts of interest that are rife in DC. It’s not just greed. That doesn’t explain it all. You need to think about class, as in the ruling class and the working class. Such collusion and purposeful silence on obvious conflicts of interest happen because the ruling class, regardless of their party, will always protect itself against everyone else. And if you are a senator and your husband is a billionaire, then that certainly makes you members of the ruling class. Which certainly clarifies why DiFi has never seriously opposed the Iraq war, now doesn’t it? “There’s plenty good money to be made / By supplying the army with the tools of the trade,” Country Joe said during the Vietnam War, and it still true today. The ruling class profits mightily from war, and hey, it’s not their kids coming back maimed or in body bags.

Why aren’t congressional Democrats working to end the war? Just look at Dianne Feinstein. There’s your answer. It’s because it’s not in their class interest to do so.

That’s why the people have to do it.

While right wing bloggers are going nuts over this (and many liberals seem oddly silent), it’s hardly a partisan issue or a right wing hit.

Research assistance for [the] story was provided by the Investigative Fund of the Nation Institute.

Metroactive concludes

You would think that, considering all the money Feinstein’s family has pocketed by waging global warfare while ignoring the plight of wounded American soldiers, she would show a smidgeon of shame and resign from the entire Senate, not just a subcommittee. Conversely, you’d think she might stick around MILCON to try and fix the medical-care disaster she helped to engineer for the vets who were suckered into fighting her and Bush’s panoply of unjust wars.

Photo from Tribune India article, Fighting corruption. Moral values must prevail
–>

Expose corruption

Sen. Dianne Feinstein has been forced to resign as chair of the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee after news of her grotesque conflicts of interest surfaced due to the billions of dollars going in defense contracts to her husband’s companies.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein has resigned from the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee. As previously and extensively reviewed in these pages, Feinstein was chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years, during which time she had a conflict of interest due to her husband Richard C. Blum’s ownership of two major defense contractors, who were awarded billions of dollars for military construction projects approved by Feinstein.

The story was broken by Metroactive, a group of alternative weeklys in northern California, who have complete coverage. Why is it that an alt weekly was the only one who could figure out what was happening? Earth to CNN and NY Times, you just didn’t have a clue, huh? More important, why was she even allowed on the committee and allowed to vote? Why didn’t she recuse herself from votes where she and her husband benefit financially? Why did no one in the Senate of either party object?

It gets worse.

It turns out that Blum also holds large investments in companies that were selling medical equipment and supplies and real estate leases—often without the benefit of competitive bidding—to the Department of Veterans Affairs, even as the system of medical care for veterans collapsed on his wife’s watch.

I shudder to think what would happen if those two got involved in the orphanage business.

Corruption and conflicts of interest that are rife in DC. It’s not just greed. That doesn’t explain it all. You need to think about class, as in the ruling class and the working class. Such collusion and purposeful silence on obvious conflicts of interest happen because the ruling class, regardless of their party, will always protect itself against everyone else. And if you are a senator and your husband is a billionaire, then that certainly makes you members of the ruling class. Which certainly clarifies why DiFi has never seriously opposed the Iraq war, now doesn’t it? “There’s plenty good money to be made / By supplying the army with the tools of the trade,” Country Joe said during the Vietnam War, and it still true today. The ruling class profits mightily from war, and hey, it’s not their kids coming back maimed or in body bags.

Why aren’t congressional Democrats working to end the war? Just look at Dianne Feinstein. There’s your answer. It’s because it’s not in their class interest to do so.

That’s why the people have to do it.

While right wing bloggers are going nuts over this (and many liberals seem oddly silent), it’s hardly a partisan issue or a right wing hit.

Research assistance for [the] story was provided by the Investigative Fund of the Nation Institute.

Metroactive concludes

You would think that, considering all the money Feinstein’s family has pocketed by waging global warfare while ignoring the plight of wounded American soldiers, she would show a smidgeon of shame and resign from the entire Senate, not just a subcommittee. Conversely, you’d think she might stick around MILCON to try and fix the medical-care disaster she helped to engineer for the vets who were suckered into fighting her and Bush’s panoply of unjust wars.

Photo from Tribune India article, Fighting corruption. Moral values must prevail

Pelosi’s Culture of Corruption: Dianne Feinstein and the DNC

March 30, 2007

Pelosi’s Culture of Corruption: Dianne Feinstein and the DNC

Nancy Pelosi ( yeah, I know, AGAIN! ), lambasted the Republicans for being nothing but crooks.  Her silence on the Democrat Culture of Corruption has been deafening.  This weeks’s scandal?  Dianne Feinstein.

Dianne Feinstein had been on the Military Construction Appropriations committee for six years.  During four of those years, Perini Corporation and URS Corp were MAJOR recipients of the largess that is the Military Construction Appropriations committee.  The good folks of California were often critical, and surprised, at Feinstein’s support of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.  They never bothered to ask why very much tho.  Feinstein’s husband’s company, Perini, received $500 million in Iraq and Afghanistan contracts.  Now, we can assume Nancy Pelosi knows Dianne Feinstein pretty well.  We can also assume Pelosi knew what Feinstein’s husband did as well.  What we can also assume is Nancy said NOTHING during the entire time Feinstein was lining her pockets with BILLIONS in federal money.  Feinstein was profiting off the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts very overtly while Nancy Pelosi and the DNC constantly harassed Dick Cheney for once being an employee of Haliburton.  And why do you suppose Nancy kept her mouth shut during all this corruption?

Date Amount Recipient

Because Howard Dean, who was screaming the loudest about Republican corruption, was taking money from the Feinsteins as fast as he could stick his hands out.

Yes folks, the entire Democrat Party was profiting from the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars while Koz and all the other sheep harped on the Republicans profiting in ways they could never prove.  There it is folks, in black and white.  It’s overt.  It’s obvious.  It’s undeniable.  What it also is, is cmpletely ignored by CBS, The New York Times, LA Times, etc. etc. etc..  You name a major media outlet, they’ll be on the ignoring this issue list as well.  So, people like me have to rely on Rush Limbaugh and Michele MalkinSome blogs are taking a little credit because Feinstein resigned from MILCON this week.  She really didn’t have any reason to stay on MILCON any longer tho, her husband sold out of Perini and URS two years ago.  Now, a lot of people will dismiss the credibility of this story because I cite Rush and Michele.  I’m sure that couldn’t make Nancy, Howard, and Dianne any happier.

It just amazes me how people like Dan Rather could look the country in the face and blame it all on Dick Cheney, knowing the entire damn time it was Feinstein and the Dems making all the money off the deaths of our soldiers.  And ya wanna know something else?  It was that same MILCON committee shelling out billions to Feinstein at Feinstein’s direction that failed to provide adequate body armor to our troops in Iraq.  And, it was that same MILCON committee handing out billions to Feinstein at the direction of Feinstein that failed to provide adequate health services to our troops that the media is whining about now.

Can we assume my “investigative” abilities are that much superior to CBS, ABC, NBC, CNN, Fox, the LA Times, the NY Times, or even the BBC?  Or, can we assume that because Dianne Feinstein is an uber-liberal Democrat woman from California they all chose to look the other way while she profited off the deaths of our soldiers?

Regardless, there’s a LOT of explaining that needs to be done by Dianne Feinstein, Nancy Pelosi, and Howard Dean.  However, I doubt CBS, ABC, NBC, or CNN will time to squeeze this topic in while they continue to dedicate every waking second to Gonzales firing a bunch of lawyers.

Feinstein quits committee under war-profiteer cloud

DiFi Scandal Goes Unreported

Renewing the Contract

Renewing the Contract
By Philip Klein
Published 11/8/2006 12:09:29 AM

Those conservatives who are waking up dispirited about the Democratic Party’s takeover of the House and its gains in the Senate would be wise to think back to a Wednesday two years ago.

On the morning of November 3, 2004, conservatives were euphoric as President Bush was re-elected comfortably and the GOP gained seats in the House and Senate — knocking off Tom Daschle in the process. Republicans began to talk in terms of being a permanent majority. The Democrats, meanwhile, were demoralized — seemingly destined for political irrelevance.

A lot has changed in two years, and a lot will change between now and November 4, 2008 — when Americans go to the polls to elect President Bush’s successor. Rather than seeing Tuesday’s defeat as a crisis, Republicans should look at it as an opportunity to rehabilitate the party in time for that crucial election.

In assessing last night’s results it is important to note that it was not a defeat for conservatism; it was a defeat for Republicanism, or at least, what Republicanism has come to represent. In the past 12 years, Republicans went from the party that promised “the end of government that is too big, too intrusive, and too easy with the public’s money” to the party of the Bridge to Nowhere; it took control of Congress on a pledge to “end its cycle of scandal and disgrace” and went down in defeat as the party of Tom DeLay and Mark Foley.

Having abandoned its core principles, the Republican Party had nothing to run on this year, so its campaign strategy centered on attacking Nancy Pelosi — a questionable tactic given that, according to some polls, more than half of the country had never even heard of her.

Republican strategists who projected optimism over the past few months cited as reasons for their confidence: fundraising, incumbency advantage, gerrymandering and new innovations such as “microtargeting.” But as this election made perfectly clear, none of this can bail out a party that is bereft of ideas.

We will hear a lot of reasons for why Republicans lost this year. We will hear that they lost because of an unpopular war, an unpopular president, a culture of corruption, a traditional anti-incumbent six-year itch and a dispirited base. But one thing is for sure. Republicans did not lose on a platform of limiting the size and scope of government.

Just as this election wasn’t a defeat for conservatism, it wasn’t a victory for liberalism. Democrats intentionally avoided a publicized “Contract With America”-style platform advancing a progressive agenda in favor of making the campaign a referendum on President Bush. The closest thing they had to a platform, “A New Direction for America,” was not a sweeping ideological document, but a laundry list of initiatives such as making college tuition tax-deductible, raising the minimum wage, and negotiating drug prices. Though a Democratic majority will likely roll back President Bush’s tax cuts, they didn’t advertise that in the “fiscal discipline” section of their platform. (It is a testament to how enamored Republicans became with big government that they enabled Democrats to run as the party of fiscal discipline.)

After controlling the House of Representatives for the last 12 years and the White House for the last six, a lot of pent up anger developed toward Republicans. If the GOP had to lose an election as a result of this sentiment, better this year than in 2008, when Americans will choose who will lead the War on Terror into the next decade.

The Democratic Party will take power in January. Either they’ll demonstrate to Americans that they have no governing philosophy, or they’ll play to their anti-war base by pushing for a premature withdrawal from Iraq and go overboard with investigations of President Bush.

While the exposure of the Democratic Party during the next two years will help Republicans, the GOP should not head into the next election thinking that running against Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton will ensure victory. Instead, the Republicans need to differentiate themselves by returning to their small government roots and once again becoming the party of ideas.

In 1994, Republicans swept into power by signing a contract with America. That contract has been breached, and unless they want to lose the big prize in 2008, it’s time for that pact to be renewed.

Fear the Terrorists, Not President Bush — On the left, my former party of choice, feels that the biggest issues confronting America are corporate greed, “the culture of corruption” (as if this does not occur on both sides), Wal-Mart, “big business,” churchgoing Christians, global warming and an assault on the civil liberties of us and terrorists. To deny this would be scandalously untrue — The “Drive-by” big city media feels the need to rant about how we “torture” terrorists, keep “secret prisons,” check phone records of suspected terrorists, regress back to Katrina whining, yada, yada and yada. The ACLU, “peace organizations,” the legal world, academia and Hollywood, not surprisingly, fall for this flawed, inane logic too. History has always proved these acrimonious fools wrong, and will again this time… if we’re not killed first by our enemies because of their devious behaviors.

Fear the Terrorists, Not President Bush
October 31st, 2006

Next Tuesday is midterm election day. When you cast your vote – if you choose to partake in this most honorable American tradition – please remember what is at stake.

On the left, my former party of choice, feels that the biggest issues confronting America are corporate greed, “the culture of corruption” (as if this does not occur on both sides), Wal-Mart, “big business,” churchgoing Christians, global warming and an assault on the civil liberties of us and terrorists. To deny this would be scandalously untrue.

On the right, my current “fearmongering” party of choice feels the biggest issue (singular) is to eliminating and freeing the world of Islamo-fascist Nazis. There is no denying this, and the sooner we, as in all other world wars, are free to do this, the better. My party wants to save the non-Muslim world, America, Israel and especially “liberal values” like sexual and gender freedoms (not just libertinism, but the freedom of women) freedom of religion, speech and of the press.

Unfortunately, aside from Radical Muslims, we have many domestic factors working against us:

The “Drive-by” big city media feels the need to rant about how we “torture” terrorists, keep “secret prisons,” check phone records of suspected terrorists, regress back to Katrina whining, yada, yada and yada. The ACLU, “peace organizations,” the legal world, academia and Hollywood, not surprisingly, fall for this flawed, inane logic too. History has always proved these acrimonious fools wrong, and will again this time… if we’re not killed first by our enemies because of their devious behaviors.

President Bush, sadly as of late, has fallen prey to dangerous political correctness and multi-cultural balderdash as he tries to unite this country. He has attempted to make good on his promise to be the great uniter, and the man has undeniably been more liberal than conservative the past year.

There is no need to do this, Mr. President.

This country was divided long before President Bush took office, and he has done his best to unite it. But many who hypocritically seek “redistribution of wealth” spend their weekends picking up wheatgrass at Whole Foods on their way to Nantucket, do not want to be united with Americans who attend church on Sunday, wave the flag, and enjoy Nascar, Applebee’s and saving money at Wal-Mart. Too bad for them. These arrogant, misguided folks have chosen to regressively look back, to sacrifice their platform to go after Mr. Bush (who is not up for re-election, by the way).

Fatuous liberals like Paul Krugman — who saw nothing wrong with comparing the backlash against the Dixie Chicks to the rise of Nazism — or the countless jabberers who have over the years denounced William F. Buckley Jr., Barry Goldwater, Sean Hannity et al. as fascists are difficult to respect, much less take seriously. As Jonah Goldberg wrote in September,

“One gets the sense that today’s liberals — beyond their phobia of offending the coalition of the oppressed (in this case, the Muslims of CAIR) — are reluctant to let Bush use “Islamic fascism” because they don’t want to give up their monopoly on the F-word.”

George Bush needs to stop trying so hard to make “peace” with those who despise us within our nation and are more concerned with meaningless impeachment than saving our world. His efforts have never been appreciated, but someday, like Reagan and those before him, perhaps they will. 

Thankfully, by the grace of G-d, the patriotic men and women of the military will save this nation as they always have. They will not get thanks from the coastal elites, but this is expected.

It’s not just that the wrong party could take power, but this party’s leaders, some of those who would be in charge of essential committees like Ways and Means, the Judiciary, Commerce, etc, are variously on record as not supporting Israel (and being proud of it!), raising taxes, ending free trade, drilling in ANWR (animals are more important than people, usually) and naturally, impeaching Bush. That will surely take our attention away from the Islamic Nazis, North Koreans and by October of next year, as opposed to fraudulent filmmakers who dream of Bush being dead, we all could be in severe peril. I’d personally put it at 50/50.

I hope that most Americans will take a deep breath, realize Bush had noble, correct intentions for freeing tens of millions from a madman and then remember that unemployment is the lowest in five years; the Dow is over 12,000 points. Inflation is 2.1 percent, the deficit is being dramatically reduced, and gas prices are falling. Let’s just hope that if the GOP maintains control, we don’t waste time, effort and money on Democrat protests and recounts. Which state this time? Indiana? Missouri? Do I hear Maryland?

Vote accordingly, and consider whether you want to tell your grandchildren you defeated carbon dioxide emissions or Islamo Nazi Fascists who threatened the free world.

Ari Kaufman is a freelance writer in Indianapolis, regularly contributing to the Indianapois Star and the Jewish Post and Opinion. He’s also the co-author of an upcoming book on educational reform. His archived work can be accessed here.

Ari Kaufman

Conservatives to Spike the Supreme Court? — For several months we’ve been hearing the mantra that most Republican congressmen don’t deserve to be reelected because the party’s record in Congress is far from a conservative one, especially when one considers runaway spending, huge deficits, ignored scandals, successful filibusters, pro-terrorist legislation, and more.

Conservatives to Spike the Supreme Court?
By Henry Mark Holzer
FrontPageMagazine.com | October 31, 2006

For several months we’ve been hearing the mantra that most Republican congressmen don’t deserve to be reelected because the party’s record in Congress is far from a conservative one, especially when one considers runaway spending, huge deficits, ignored scandals, successful filibusters, pro-terrorist legislation, and more.At the same time, we’ve heard sincere pleas from conservative leaders and commentators that, nevertheless, Republican voters should “hold their noses” and return GOP majorities, no matter how narrow, to the House and Senate.

The principal justification given for what some consider to be a compromise with conservative values (but in reality is not), is that no matter how bad the Republican legislative performance has been, the Democrats are going to be far worse. For conservatives, that’s certainly true. Inevitably, the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi domestic agenda will be disastrous, especially for the economy (e.g., rescinding tax cuts). Their foreign affairs policies will surely endanger national security (e.g., abruptly pulling the plug on Iraq).

But even worse is that if Harry Reid becomes Senate majority leader, and if 87-year-old Justice John Paul Stevens leaves the bench (actuarially, a real possibility), conservatives can kiss goodbye – for at least two years and maybe longer – any chance of obtaining that one crucial seat on the Supreme Court which, with Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito, could have a profound effect on both domestic and foreign policy for years to come.

If this double whammy occurs – Reid running the Senate, and Stevens leaving the bench – there will be a battle for Stevens’s seat (and thus for the soul of the Court), that will make the Clarence Thomas confirmation fight of 15 years ago look like a walk in the park.

Like the Thomas fight, the one to fill Stevens’s Supreme Court seat will be a battle that conservatives must win if they don’t want to see more decisions like the following – for which Stevens was largely responsible:

  • Upholding the McCain-Feingold law’s suppression of political speech;
  • Abolishing the death penalty for young killers;
  • Seizing private property for “public purposes” through eminent domain;
  • Approving the use of race as a criterion for higher education admissions;
  • Providing enemy combatants with habeas corpus, due process, and court access; and
  • Invalidating President Bush’s Guantanamo military tribunals.It is a cliché to observe that we live in perilous times. But cliché or not, the fact is that we do. Pakistan’s unstable government already has atomic weapons. Despotic North Korea may be close to having atomic weapons. The Iranian theocracy is feverishly seeking atomic weapons. Al-Qaeda is trying to buy or steal atomic weapons.

    The military and foreign policy implications of atomic proliferation are almost too scary to contemplate. They will present colossally important and difficult questions of constitutional law for the Supreme Court to resolve – such as in meeting atomic threats, how far the president’s Article II powers extend without consultation with Congress.

    Also on the table are other questions of presidential power, of congressional power, and – always – of judicial power, especially in America’s current battle with Islamic terrorists.

    Indeed, the preliminary judicial skirmishes in that battle – the Hamdi, Rasul, Padilla, and Hamdan cases, dealing with enemy combatants, habeas corpus, due process, access to courts, and military tribunals – have been just a warm up for what’s to come.

    Those cases presented questions of presidential power to wage war under Article II of the Constitution, and although the President won a few rounds, he lost a few as well. The cases also examined the power of Congress, and its constitutional role in modern, asymmetrical warfare. And some lawyers believe, with good reason, that the Court’s tilt in those four cases was, on balance, away from presidential power and in favor of Congressional power.

    Now, with the enactment of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, new constitutional questions have arisen, chief among them whether the “due process” that Congress has provided enemy combatants is adequate. While there are those of us who believe the Act provided too much – see

“Khalid Sheik Mohammed is Not O.J. Simpson: Military Commissions Act of 2006” – not surprisingly, there are those like the ACLU who believe it provided too little, and that Islamic terrorist murderers should be treated with the kid gloves afforded defendants in the American criminal justice system.America’s national security has already suffered enough from Justice Stevens. We cannot afford another such appointment. Especially with national security constitutional questions such as warrantless surveillance still to be resolved.

If Stevens leaves the bench in the next two years, even if the president wants to make quality appointments like his of Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito, George H.W. Bush’s of Justice Thomas, and Reagan’s of Justice Scalia, the president will be stymied if Harry Reid controls the Senate. Indeed, even if Reid doesn’t, the Republicans will need a majority leader who, unlike Bill Frist, has the spine to break an inevitable Democratic filibuster if the nominee is a strong conservative.

That’s why this notion that conservatives should “punish” right-leaning leaders for their real and imagined shortcomings is akin not merely to political suicide, but invites at least one Supreme Court appointment that in national security cases like warrantless surveillance could tip the already closely balanced scales against the country’s war with Islamic terrorists and seriously endanger the survival of the United States.

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Someone’s Dying for Your Vote — As the elections draw near, I find myself getting angrier and angrier. On a daily basis, I receive e-mail messages from conservative readers explaining why they’re not going to vote on November 7. Fellow conservative bloggers have elucidated their views on this subject supporting the abstainers, and explaining why a Democrat victory in eight days isn’t such a bad thing.

Someone’s Dying for Your Vote
October 30th, 2006

2,808 Americans have died in Iraq the past 43 months. Another 282 have met such a fate in and around Afghanistan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. Likely all are rolling over in their graves as fellow countrymen who sent them to war are threatening to boycott Election Day.

Particularly disheartening to these fallen heroes must be the conservative abstentions, as likely 90 percent of such Americans were in favor of sending soldiers to Iraq in March 2003, while probably 100 percent supported invading Afghanistan after 9/11. It must be unfathomable to these brave souls that the very people who rallied politicians to risk lives for these efforts are now turning their backs on the honored dead, and what they died for.

Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.—Thomas Paine

As amazing as it might seem, due to Republican failures to curtail spending, solve illegal immigration, cure Social Security, and police corruption, many Party members are forgetting the more than a million Americans that have died in battle for the precious right to vote.

Should we forsake that right now because this Congress has failed to address such issues? What does that say to the 3,090 soldiers that have died to give Iraqis and Afghanis such a right, or to the 170,000 Americans still at risk to protect it?

Maybe more importantly, would any of the fallen abstain from voting as result of these other issues if they were still alive today?

If the people fail to vote, a government will be developed which is not their government…. The whole system of American Government rests on the ballot box. Unless citizens perform their duties there, such a system of government is doomed to failure.—Calvin Coolidge

As the elections draw near, I find myself getting angrier and angrier. On a daily basis, I receive e-mail messages from conservative readers explaining why they’re not going to vote on November 7. Fellow conservative bloggers have elucidated their views on this subject supporting the abstainers, and explaining why a Democrat victory in eight days isn’t such a bad thing.

Every morning as I drive to work, I hear callers tell Rush Limbaugh why they’re not going to vote; every afternoon I hear the same on Sean Hannity’s program.

The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all. —John F. Kennedy

So I grow angrier, because I’m saddened for the state of the Republican Party, and wonder how we have so fallen from the exhilaration we felt on November 2, 2004, when President Bush was reelected, and we miraculously added to our majorities in both chambers of Congress. We were going to accomplish so much in the next two years. In particular, finally reform Social Security, and extend the president’s tax cuts.

Alas, as 2005 rolled on, such lofty goals were replaced by scandals surrounding former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, the Vice President’s former Chief of Staff I. Lewis Libby, and a terrible hurricane in the Gulf Coast.

The future of this republic is in the hands of the American voter.—Dwight D. Eisenhower

2006 wasn’t any better, as a proposed sale of American ports to an Arabic company hit the front pages, along with illegal immigrant protests, and a disgraceful scandal involving Congressional pages just weeks before Election Day.

Nice two years, folks. Nice job taking advantage of the mandate we gave you on November 2, 2004.

Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual—or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country.—Samuel Adams

Like many of my fellow countrymen, I’m ashamed of the performance of this Congress, and my Party. However, that shame does not extend to ignoring the most sacred right bestowed upon us by our Founding Fathers. Forsaking that right as a form of protest is un-American and unthinkable for a true conservative.

The ballot is stronger than the bullet.—Abraham Lincoln

Folks that are unhappy with what the Republicans have done in the past 22 months should consider voting for the Democrat in their state or district. Or the Independent. Or the Libertarian. Or write in their grandmother Mabel.

But don’t stay home, for that dishonors all that have died to give you this precious right. Such are certainly the sentiments of great Americans past and present:

If the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made not for the public good so much as for the selfish or local purposes.—Daniel Webster

That government is the strongest of which every man feels himself a part.  —Thomas Jefferson

Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us.  The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country.—Franklin D. Roosevelt

When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you for rulers just men who will rule in the fear of God. The preservation of a republican government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty.—  Noah Webster

In a world that might say one vote doesn’t matter…, it does matter because each person is of infinite worth and value to God… Your vote is a declaration of importance as a person and a citizen.—Billy Graham

We have a duty to our country to participate in the political process. See, if you believe in freedom, you have a duty to exercise your right to vote to begin with. I’m [here] to encourage people to do their duty, to go to the polls. I want all people, no matter what their political party is or whether they even like a political party, to exercise their obligation to vote. —George W. Bush

Wise words all. Yet, caution shouldn’t be capriciously thrown to the wind when exercising this right, for the consequence of error is great, especially today. The truly judicious, before demonstrating disappointment with their Party by voting for a member of another, should recall the last time Elephants behaved this way. Or have you forgotten that such protestations in 1992 gave us fourteen years of the Clintons, with possibly many more to follow?

With that in mind, try to imagine what turning over the House of Representatives to a dove like Nancy Pelosi (D-California) would say to those that have given their lives to this war effort, and those still risking so. What a shocking statement that would be to our military to hand over the reigns of power to such an irresponsible appeaser less than five years after we sent our friends and family members to die for their country.

So think long and hard, conservatives, about the value of your vote, those that have died to give you the privilege, and the folly of abstention. And, if you still can’t bring yourself to the polling booth on November 7, send a proxy to my e-mail address, for only death would prevent me from exercising this precious right regardless of how disappointed I was in my Party.

Noel Sheppard is a frequent contributor to American Thinker.  He is also contributing editor for the Media Research Center’s NewsBusters.org, and a contributing writer to its Business & Media Institute.  Noel welcomes feedback.

This Explains a Lot of Things — this was a hoax but it’s still funny — Gore was born mar. 1948

This Explains a Lot of Things

Many will recall that on July 8, 1947, witnesses claim an unidentified object with five aliens aboard crashed on a sheep and cattle ranch just outside Roswell, New Mexico.

This is a well known incident that many say has long been covered up by the US Air Force and the federal government.

However, you may well NOT know that in the month of March 1948, exactly nine months after that historic day, Albert Arnold Gore, Jr.; Hillary Rodham; John F. Kerry; William Jefferson Clinton; Howard Dean; Nancy Pelosi; Dianne Feinstein; Charles E. Schumer; and Barbara Boxer were born.

That piece of information has now cleared up a lot of things.