Why the Tea Party Movement exists 3


One simple chart from the Congressional Budget Office explains why a Tea Party Movement exists.

Look at the last bar on the right.  Deficit spending hasn’t inched up, it hasn’t even exploded.  The operative verb is hemorrhaging.  Our budget is hemorrhaging because of spending imposed on America by the Democratic Party.

These are partisan deficits.

Democrats were justly (if insincerely) critical of excessive government spending during the Bush years.  Heck, rank and file Republicans were critical.  Why do you think so many stayed home in 2006 and ceded Congress to the Democrats?

Republicans got what they deserved.

And now America is getting what it deserves turning over the keys to the treasury to a party that believes that the government that governs the best spends the most.  The late, great Thomas Jefferson is surely turning over in his grave.

The depth of the fiscal carnage is so utterly breathtaking, it could easily lead one to despair and cynicism.

Don’t fall for it.  After all, this IS America.  We are the most resourceful country in the history of humanity.  The ballot box gives us power, and don’t think otherwise.

The damage done by our elected officials can be mitigated by a strong response at the ballot box this November.

To be fair to my Democratic friends, Republicans have colluded in the expansion of the Federal Government.  They deserve much blame, but Democrats deserve more in light of the explosion in spending that began when they retook Congress in 2006, and in light of the hemorrhaging since President Obama took over last year.

To put things in perspective, in 1980 the Federal government spent an average of $2498 per citizen.

This year, the estimated numbers are $11,640 per citizen (or $4470 in 1980 inflation-adjusted numbers).

My liberal friends contend that the root cause of the deficits are “Bush’s tax cuts for the rich.”  But that doesn’t square with my analysis of the data.  For the decade of the 80’s, the government collected an average of $22,688 in taxes per citizen.  In the 2000’s, they collected an average of $29,427 per citizen.  (2009 receipts are estimated.  Numbers are inflation-adjusted in 1980 dollars.)

In other words, receipts have skyrocketed.  They are not the root cause of our deficit hemorrhaging.

Spending is the problem.

The Tea Party Movement exists largely because they know we can’t afford the spending imposed on our nation by both parties.  Rank and file Republicans tend to be fiscally frugal.  Elected Republicans aren’t so consistent.

The Tea Party Movement is a mechanism to keep elected Republicans accountable to the taxpayers.

Look at the chart above again.  We’ve got a big spending problem.  Let’s elect the women and men who can fix the problem.

To my Republican friends, if you regain Congress this Fall, don’t blow it.  You’ve got one more shot.  We’re counting on you.

Political Correctness vs. Common Sense Reply


Imagine you attend a public university.

You form a group that stands for something.  It might stand for Jesus. Maybe it’s equal rights or gay marriage or Israel’s right to exist.

It doesn’t matter what it is.  You seek members who embrace the same philosophical underpinnings as stated in your group’s charter.

You ask the university for the same resources it provides to every other group on campus, such as use of bulletin boards, meeting spaces, even access to funding.

They tell you no.

Why?  Because you refuse to allow voting members who don’t agree with your group’s charter.

Follow the logic here: A gay rights group would have to  allow Christians to vote who believe marriage is between a man and a woman.

If you’re a Jewish rights group, you would have to let Nazis vote.

Democratic groups would have to allow Republicans vote.

If you’re in an African-American group, you would have to allow white supremists to vote

Does this make any sense?

Common sense has just been put to the test in the Supreme Court case of Christian Legal Society v. Martinez.  It was just argued on Monday.

Here’s the issue in a nutshell:  There is a group at the Hasting’s College of Law (at the University of California) called the Christian Legal Society (CLS). They exclude from full membership students who either advocate or engage in “unrepentant” sexual conduct “outside of marriage between one man and one woman.”

Anyone can attend their meetings regardless of their belief system.  However, you must subscribe to their belief system in order to be an officer or to be a voting member.

The college said that’s discrimination and refused to allow use of their bulletin boards, meeting spaces, and financial resources.

It’s weird.

Justice Scalia put it this way:  ”To require the Christian society to allow atheists not just to join, but to conduct Bible classes, that’s crazy.”

Yes, it is crazy.  But not to liberal judges like Justices Sotomayor or Stevens.  Sotomayor specifically views CLS actions as discrimination.

When the decision comes, it will be a split decision.  Will political correctness win or common sense?

I’m betting on common sense because the Supreme Court is pretty evenly split right now with Kennedy being the swing vote.

That will change, however, if President Obama ever gets a chance to replace any of the Constitution-based judges (Roberts, Scalia, Alito, Thomas, Kennedy).

If that day comes, political correctness will become the law of the land and free speech shall wither.

What is the truth? Reply


As seen in the Des Moines Register April 18, 2010

Is truth absolute or relative?

Americans disagree.  The question needs a healthy airing in light of an upcoming nomination battle this summer to select a new member of the Supreme Court.  After all, our Justices have to determine what is the truth from a legal point of view.  Their decisions have had a profound affect on the fabric of our nation.

The most obvious example: before 1973, forty-six states said it was illegal to kill a baby in the womb.  After 1973, those laws were considered to be wrong.  The underlying principal, that the baby in the womb was a person with rights, was “untrue” according to the Justices.

Moral Relativism has emerged as a powerful force in America.  It animates the political Left, and it is the political Left that currently dominates Washington.  They will select the next Justice.

Moral Relativists view truth as an oozing, fluid idea.  What was true yesterday may not be true tomorrow.  Feelings determine morality.  Truth is an evolving entity, much like the Constitution of the United States in their eyes.

The self-esteem movement is a reflection of the impact moral relativism has had on our culture.  Moral absolutism produces guilt when we do something wrong.  Guilt is bad.  On the other hand, moral relativism allows us to rationalize away such unpleasantness, which makes us happy.  Happiness is good.

Therefore, feelings ultimately define morality for the Relativist.  Self-esteem is the name of the game.

For moral absolutists, it is just the opposite.  Moral actions define feelings.  Self-respect is the name of the game.  They believe truth is timeless and universal.

Moral Relativists point out that truth can’t be absolute, because different cultures have embraced such different values.  Who is to say our values, whatever they may be, are superior to theirs’?  Values and truth are relative.  Right?  The mantra for the Relativist goes something like this:  “Although I’m personally opposed to [fill in the blank], I certainly can’t tell another culture or person that it is wrong if that is their own truth.”

But if that were really true, we’d be forced to accept Nazi genocide of the Jews as an acceptable German value, and who are we to impose our values on others? In fact, we so adamantly rejected them that we went to war over them.

This points out an unspoken flaw with Relativism.  Cultures are actually more alike than dissimilar.  We are bound together by transcendent truth.

Courage and compassion are revered in every culture in the world today and yesterday.  Even in Nazi Germany, they were on display by brave Germans hiding their Jewish friends from the Nazis. Wisdom, hope, and honesty are universally venerated.  They are ingrained in humanity, imprinted on our soul, so to speak.

There has never been a culture that celebrates lying, betrayal, addiction, cowardice, and selfishness.  How can this be if values are relative?

The great moral influencers of the world include Moses, Jesus, Buddha, Confucius, and Mohammed.  Their moral philosophies were more alike than dissimilar.

So when the Congressional Judicial Committee sits down with the next Supreme Court nominee to determine their worthiness for the bench, it would be instructive to ask him or her these questions:

Do we have a fundamental right to life?

Do we have a fundamental right to liberty?

Do we have a fundamental right to a pursuit of happiness?  What does happiness mean from a legal viewpoint?

If yes, from whom (or Whom) do these rights flow?

Is truth absolute or relative?

My Tea Party Introduction 2


I attended the Tea Party rally at the State Capital in Des Moines last Friday, my first.  I had three specific things I was looking for:

  1. What is the single biggest issue of concern to this movement?
  2. How many people would show up?
  3. Are the people in this movement normal?

Let me answer these questions in reverse order.  Yes, the people in attendance were normal.  I wanted to see for myself, because Speaker Pelosi and President Obama suggest otherwise.

It is true that they recited the Pledge of Allegiance without flinching.  And they belted out a heartfelt rendition of the National Anthem.  Are those normal occurrences at rallies attended by liberals?  Perhaps.

One fellow had a small American flag protruding from his hat.  The overall sense that I had from the crowd is that they love America.

The Des Moines Register reported that about 1200 people attended the rally.  Sounds good.  It’s hard to estimate large crowds for me.   The group was energized by the speakers, passionate about the message.

So what is the message?  Is there a single theme?  Yes.

The Tea Party Movement is all about independence.

The speakers talked about the size of government, about runaway government spending, about government intrusion into our lives in ways never intended by the Founding Fathers.  To quote Ronald Reagan, they want big government off their backs.

Ultimately, they agree with the first Democratic President, Thomas Jefferson, who said the government that governs least governs best.

Ultimately, they believe a government governs best when it makes people stronger by breeding independence.

Ultimately, they believe that the current direction of the country is exactly wrong, that we are weakening the very fiber of America by breeding government dependence.

I saw several Republican candidates at the rally.  However, Republicans would be sadly mistaken if they think this is a Republican crowd.  The Tea Party exists partly because Republicans didn’t act like Republicans when they controlled the Congress and the White House.

A reminder to Republicans:  President Obama is still more popular than you according to the RealClearPolitics polling averages (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/).

Republicans can pick up a lot of Tea Party votes if they act like Republicans.  If they regain power, will they exhibit the same political resolve that Mr. Obama and Ms. Pelosi have demonstrated in advancing their big government agenda?