Saturday, December 12, 2009

Visible Conservative

Breitbart at Big Hollywood then at Big Government along with PJTV and others have been pushing the idea that the battle between the “Conflict of Visions” (as represented by Conservatives and Liberals) needs to be fought by Conservatives on the Cultural side. Breitbart is talking pop culture. He is talking movies, music, tv, videos and all the stuff younger generations listen to and watch.

When those technologies are put together and you throw in some great investigative journalism you have those brilliant videos finaly putting the corruption of ACORN on the screen for all the world to see and there was retribution. The liberals did this from the Depression era on and it works. Breitbart has taken the first steps in the battle to fight the corruption of the Left.

The icon of the current pop culture is the movie industry which has turned almost exclusively Liberal from the 60’s on. Breitbart says as Conservatives we have the message; we win the arguments in dry professorial terms, but fail to close the deal with the public. We are losing it on the front of popular culture. He started Big Hollywood in response to this lack of ability of Conservatives to get our message out to the popular culture. If you don’t mind the pun; a picture is worth a thousand words.

On this site he highlights movies, actors, and directors that send a Conservative message or at least are neutral in the battle.

The movie “The Blind Side” I had missed but after Laura Ingrahm mentioned it on an O’Reily clip I checked into it and came up with this quote from Breitbart’s Big Hollywood in a review written by Pam Meister.

Conservatives whine and moan that Hollywood ignores them, so it’s important to support quality films like this that do make the cut. If films like “The Blind Side” make money, Hollywood will make more of them. The majority of Hollywoodites may lean ideologically to the left, but money always wins in the end.

That hit the nail on the head. Here is a link to the piece.


Another great site is PJTV


PJTV is a video driven site with 14 different “shows” that are relatively short. They go from the humorous to the serious; while maintaining a smart witty and easy not to mention fun to watch format. They put new shows up on a daily rotating basis.

AlfonZo is a hoot and Bill Whittle is everywhere throughout the set and sharp as a tac. Poliwood is the show that like Big Hollywood features movies of the Right.

We Conservatives have always had the deep thinkers with the Buckley’s and all the others that I love and study, but let’s face it we got nowhere until someone or some idea made it into the mainstream pop culture. Regan with his movie connection was already there. With the advent of the internet, there were plenty of wannabes like me to pump it full of content.

Breitbart and his ideas have opened it up to moving pictures. Lol. They are making our message fun to SEE again. Milton Freedman said "Underlying most arguements against free markets, is a lack of belief in freedom itself." Breitbart and the bunch can make that message of personal freedom striking and personal as the movies did for the Liberal Movement in the 60's to present. Reading and studying is great for some of us, but if you want to get the masses behind your ideas you need the new medias and pictures and sound and we need to make it fun. It is a liberating idea to realize that people want to listen and watch our message and that all we have to do is add a little spice to the mix. People like me realize you can make any dish palatable with enough hot sauce.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Friday, December 11, 2009

The Government Does Create Jobs --Just Not FREEDOM

The Government Does Create Jobs.
But Business, creates Jobs and FREEDOM

They both use other people's money. Let me explain.

All I’ve been hearing is that government can’t create jobs, business can. I’ve believed it; I wanted to believe it. The argument goes that the government in the Democrat scheme of things takes taxes out of those that work and creates work or jobs. It’s been called redistributing the wealth. In the book I’m reading “Leave Us Alone” by Grover Norquist he uses an example to show what happens. Norquist says it is like taking a bucket of water out of a lake then walking around to the other side and with cameras blazing and people clapping the bucket is poured back into the lake and the slogan would read something like; Vote for Fred he has put water back into the lake.

The problem of course is that he didn’t create any more water and in the process of carrying the bucket around the lake a lot of the water was lost.

That got me thinking. The other side of the argument is that business or entrepreneurs through the “Free Market system” create jobs not the government. Is that really the case? I dislike messing with the orthodoxy of my compatriots, but let’s compare apples to apples. So we may be better armed to fight the battle.

The first chink in the argument is a big one. The government can create jobs just like entrepreneurs. Both take money they get from others to create jobs. Look around you, the number of government jobs has skyrocketed since WWII. The average pay for Federal employees I just read on Drudge surpassed $70,000 plus bennies. Not too shabby.


That article in USA Today by Dennis Cauchon points out that the average non Fed worker makes $30,000 less.

The article is astonishing. Below are some quotes.

“Federal workers are enjoying an extraordinary boom time — in pay and hiring — during a recession that has cost 7.3 million jobs in the private sector”

“When the recession started, the Transportation Department had only one person earning a salary of $170,000 or more. Eighteen months later, 1,690 employees had salaries above $170,000”

{"There's no way to justify this to the American people. It's ridiculous," says Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, a first-term lawmaker who is on the House's federal workforce subcommittee}

Jason Chaffetz is right. It is ridiculous. BTW Rep. Chaffetz of Utah is the only member of the House that did not put any pork in the recent $1.1 trillion dollar bill.


Another astonishing thing is that all the Republicans who railed and derided the bill and didn’t vote for the it, immediately got in line once it was passed, so they too could feed at the government free money teat.

Getting back to my argument; first government does create jobs and good ones too. They too can create jobs out of the thin air which we call ideas. They can advertise the need for their product. They can hype it all to hell and back. Nike said “Just Do It” Obama said “Yes we Can”. Look at global warming, look at swine flu. Look at Hurricanes. All the hype is just the government trying to sell the voters through their legislators a bill of goods.

Second. Free Market use other people’s money just as much as government does. The entrepreneur raises money to turn his idea into reality by talking investors into loaning or buying stocks for that idea. Then once in business he sells at a profit his product to the consumer.

So government and “Free Markets” or Capitalism does the same thing. The catch is in how they do it. I would rather see the debate centered on the real issue and that is FREEDOM. More properly on the question; which system, Capitalism or Government allows the most freedom to the most people at less cost?

While the entrepreneur chooses to go into business to makes a profit, he only makes a profit if what he makes is good and people buy it. The people that give him the money have the freedom of choice to buy it or not. The people who run the businesses within the “Free Market” do so again, by their own free choice. If they chose badly or a customer buys a bad product, it is their mistake and they immediately pay for it and hopefully learn from their mistake. The business goes out of business and the customer buys from another competitor next time. The risk of failure is spread around throughout the country and the reliance is upon the individual for the success or failure.

The government gets its money through taxes which people have to pay or face fines or jail. No freedom there. If the service provided isn’t very good, you still have to use it. Very little freedom exists when it comes to mailing a letter.

For the past few decades there has been a running battle to regain some of the Freedom we have ceded to government; in education, property rights, and just plain freedom from regulation. Although there have been significant victorious battles, the war was and is being won by the government.

The whole Tea Party thing is an outgrowth of anger over the constant loss of Freedom. They have got it right when they emphasize the loss of Freedom from the over sized, overreaching master which we call government. People understand not being able to do what they feel is for their own good. They understand they know their own lives better than a bureaucrat does.

The Rep from Utah, Chaffetz may be young and idealistic but he may be on to something. I think that people are ready for leaders to lead us back to Freedom. This may be the time for leaders who are not always trying to give us fish but willing to show us how to fish and why the responsibilities of freedom are a small price to pay -- A far smaller than what the Master in government demands for his gifts. FREEDOM

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Most politicians Mean what they say by saying Meaningless things.

Most politicians Mean what they say by saying Meaningless things.

click pic to enlarge

Some politicians Mean what they say about Meaningful things and are forced out of politics, yet keep their integrity. Saul Anuzis former State Chairman of the Michigan Republican Party is one of that breed. Saul remains ever active in the party and the Conservative cause.

To Mean what you say today about matters of substance and get reelected is truly a rare ability. I received an email from Saul about a Politician who Means what he says and is in a position to Mean what he says about important Meaningful matters.

I’m talking about Thaddeus McCotter from Michigan’s Congressional District in Livonia Mi. Below is a link to the article in the American Spectator that Saul sent out.


Being fond of words, I love to hear Congressman McCotter talk. His dry humor is along the lines of a William F. Buckley, yet a little sharper and somehow more in tune with the times. He’s proven that he can talk the King’s English and yet get his message across to the Blue Collar people in his district.

McCotter is a person who enjoys an intelligent discussion and seems to hold his own against most. He is now the Chair of the Republican Policy Committee. It is nice to see Minority Leader John Boehner picking the likes of McCotter to surround himself with.

click pic to enlarge

-----quote from article-----
McCOTTER'S VISION EXTENDS FAR BEYOND his congressional district, however. He methodically walks through a five-point summary of the fundamental principles he says should guide the Republican Party: "Our liberty is from God not the government; our sovereignty rests in our souls not the soil; our security is through strength not surrender; our prosperity is from the private sector not the public sector; and our truths are self-evident, not relative."

I’m not a fan of cutting and pasting but --- here is another that shows while the Republican Party in general was going to the Center and even the Left to try to get votes and were losing. Thaddeus McCotter stayed on the Right and was able to communicate to a coalition that President Reagan had awakened so long ago. To quote the quote “traditional area Republicans and blue-collar conservatives”

-----quote from article------
A graduate of Detroit's Catholic Central High School, where he played football, McCotter went on to receive his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Detroit. He was elected to the Wayne County Commission in 1992 at just 27. There he led the charge to change the county's charter to force a new tax to be approved by two-thirds of commissioners and 60 percent of the voters. Elected to the state senate in 1998, McCotter launched a political career based on appealing to traditional area Republicans and blue-collar conservatives.

With his stances even those not conservative ones, he has earned my respect and with his humor I give him my thanks. I thank him for the relief he provide when compared with the likes of Barney Frank and his temper tantrums when faced with any opposition. Congressman McCotter seems to have found that special skill of communicating the positive effects of the conservative message to the high and the low brows of this land.

The article lists five principles that McCotter says should lead us :

{ "Our liberty is from God not the government; our sovereignty rests in our souls not the soil; our security is through strength not surrender; our prosperity is from the private sector not the public sector; and our truths are self-evident, not relative."}

With a conservative as Chair of the Policy Committee that states the sentiments above, I have hope for the Republicans and a Conservative Revolution in the House in 2010. A unifying component is still needed; whether a single person or a device as the “Contract With America” was.

But McCotter is a start. His gift of knowing how to communicate how conservative principles work in real life’s concrete terms is another step in the right direction. McCotter has a working knowledge of Conservateese as well as the King’s English. He got reelected in a competitive swing district. If he can communicate that along with his humor to the rest of the Republican Party we may have something brewing.

McCotter Means what he says, along with that refreshing and somehow familiar looking glint in his eye.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

For a taste of McCotter's humor and a clue where "American Spectator" got most of their stuff see the youtube link below


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Through the Window ala Looking Glass

Let us go through the Looking Glass not darkly but with a spring in our step as we embrace the freedom we want back.

In the grand scheme of things ideas help guide our actions through the labyrinth of decisions we make every day. In the political realm, basic ideas as to how to react are important if you wish to achieve results.

A combination of those two thoughts; ideas and results, are best found in think tanks. I have the Mackinaw Center in mind. The Mac Center is a free market think tank located in Midland Mi. They have been of interest to me for a long time, as a resource in my political blogging and learning.

Recently they put out a piece in their blog about the Overton Window.


This was a recap of the work of a person who had a major influence on the Mac Center and the course it has led in its career – on think tanks in general. The ideas behind the “Overton Window” defined how an idea can turn into a workable policy that can get enacted into law.

The article explains how public policy can be made only if a political will exists in the public at large to make it happen. Overton explained that the role of the think tank was to change that public opinion.

Although one would think that the legislators who write and vote on the bill are the ones important to public policy, Overton showed that they are all too human and desire to be reelected and like to be liked. Therefore it is through the shifting focus of public awareness and opinion the viability of public policy must be viewed.

A politician will seldom vote against his or her best interest. Overton then posited that the only way to do that was to shift public opinion to the point that it would not be against the politician’s best interest to vote differently. Public opinion can be changed; then the politician needs to be made aware of it. Those are the jobs of the Think Tanks.

The only thing positive for the Republican party out of all this is that the Democrat Party in now leading the charge for Big Everything at the expense of Individual Rights. If they can get behind majority opinion then they can rebound all the more.

Politicians know this intuitively, at least the good ones. The first thing Newt Gingrich did when he saw the coming 2008 election losses coming was to take private polls of the mood of the country of public opinion. He came up with what he called tri-majorities in favor of certain public policy issues. When the majority of Republicans, Democrats and independents were all found on one issue he called it a tri-majority. He then shaped a platform around them. They included such things as English as the official language, strengthen our borders, and finding domestic oil. He gave these to the leaders of the party and they went to work around something they previously didn’t recognize as important. Newt and his American Solutions served as a think tank in this case. Through his Drill here, Drill now petition he focused the shifting lens of public opinion and then made Congress aware of it.

For the Tea Party folks, this Window opens and closes as the public awareness does. They seem to be aware of this and are themselves doing what Overton suggests a think tank should. They are trying to shift public awareness and educate candidates. Will the Republican Party adapt?

The parameters of the Overton Window are shifting in a kaleidoscopic fashion. As a mixed metaphor of sorts, we need to stop the kaleidoscope, throw open the sash and jump through the looking glass. The other side may be strange indeed, but the joy and wonder will be in the newness and the doing. In other words in the freedom of it all.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Monday, December 7, 2009

Nature Abhors a Vaccum

Wow. The Rumor is Confirmed.

-----link to Rasmussen Poll-----

For awhile now I have been saying to anyone who will listen in the Republican Party that there is“Angst” out there and the Party needs to come up with policies, programs and candidates that reflect that. I started back in July of 08 with the “Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less” protest along the lines of Newt Gingrich Petition that ended up with 1.5 million signatures. July of that year I and a couple others had a march/protest in downtown Muskegon. The success of Newt’s petition came out of the anger - the sleeping bear was waking up.

Then the “Sleeping Bear” growled again except louder at the “Tea Party” rallies. The Angst heard in that growl from the Silent Majority made it clear that the Silent Majority was becoming Silent No More.

While I see some signs of the State Party trying to figure out how to “manipulate” this “Angst”, they might find by their top down attitude (try condescending attitude) is too little too late and unless more substantive will create the opposite effect they were looking for.

There are groups out there that are gathering up Precinct Delegates and will try to make a run at the party. These groups are serious and are also critiquing and vetting candidates. They do have foot soldiers out there. The groups are varied and many and the number of volunteers is uncertain but with larger issues and resonant policies the candidates they choose, as in NY 23 have proven themselves to be formidable.

One thing the Founders believed in was that the “Sleeping Bear” or common man was not stupid in their combined wisdom. For awhile now this Bear has sensed danger and has been hoping others will lead the way for him to do something that will turn this mess around. The Republican Party promised to do that, but after Big Government (Big Power) corrupted them they quit the fight. The Bear sensed this -- the Party lost. In its misery the Bear began to strectch is muscles and lately is extending its claws. It is deciding to do it on its own.

The angst is complicated yet simple. Anti Big anything is at its core. They’ve had enough of Big Everything telling them what to do. They are finding and using what freedom is still left in this country and trying to find ways to use that freedom to resurrect those other freedoms that have been buried and long forgotten.

Big Parties rank right up there with Big Business, Big Labor and Big Government.

What is this Angst? A Lion of Conservative thought in 2008 wrote a book that sums it up. “Leave Us Alone” His name is Grover G. Norquist. “Leave Us Alone” as Robert Novak wrote of the book and its title, “ a clarion call in the political wilderness”

That Clarion call was used by the Pilgrims when they left England and sailed to America. That same call was heard among the settlers moving west; by anyone who believes in limited government including the Writers of our Constitution. By anyone who values individual freedom - that individuals count.

I believe that call is what is driving the Tea Party movement. Make no mistake this is becoming a movement. I have seen directly on the local level not just people on the corner holding signs, but organized interest groups sitting down privately with candidates and grilling them with tough questions. They are reaching out to all candidates in all parties. A Political arm of the Tea Party is I Caucus which is in the business of not forming a 3rd party but of taking over the RNC from the bottom up. They are not just talking as I said; they are doing this in a systematic way through candidate training and support and getting Precinct Delegates elected.

This is all stuff the local state and national party should be doing but isn’t.

Nature abhors a vacuum, and that is what the National Party on down has left those who were in the Conservative Coalition. In the Parties haste to have a big tent it has alienated the base by its lack of support which gave the party its definition.

The “Tea Party Movement” has been formed of the most active of the coalition from groups who were forced to go on their own apart from the Party like Citizens for Traditional Values, and the Americans for Tax Reform, Americans for Prosperity and now I Caucus. In other words those who have any passion left. All these activists who were welcomed under the Reagan Party now are gathering again and making alliances that better reflect the population as a whole than the Republican party currently does. The National and State Party should be happy that they are still knocking on their door.

Mr. Steele and Wiser should do more than placate and manipulate this angst in their condescending ways. They should try listening then try to help and facillate that gathering of the angst; if they don’t (as they are finding out) it will be turned against them.

If the Leaders of the Republican party really see the danger of a 3rd party to them then they should truly seek to be a party that encourages not placates those uppity conservatives.

Above all else the party needs to shed its sheep clothing, its stodgy, de-tusked, head drooped symbol. We need some crisp clean policies with the new image that differentiate us from the Liberals. We have to start acting like we can do things and are willing to take the lead in getting things turned around.

As in Nature what comes smashing in to fill the Political void is sharp fast and hard. Ask the O about that. He filled their void with a messiah figure; we have a chance to fill ours with and ideal. By We The People. Which do you think will win an election?

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative