Conservatism My Way

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In an era when democrats are calling Trump and his followers conservatives, I felt it necessary to define what conservatism means to me, and it is nearly the polar opposite of Trumpkins. Not every conservative thinks alike and there are many varieties, but true conservatives will probably agree with the majority of my points. If you can agree with most of them, then feel free to share this; what the heck, share it anyways. Start a converstion!

Conservative Principles & Traits

1. Constitutional Conservative. Believes in and supports the United States Constitution and all of its amendments, even when it is inconvenient. Our founding framework for freedom is amendable, so if there is something you don’t like or think is outdated, fix it. Yes, it is a high hurdle to amend the Constitution, and it should be! Protect our bill of rights and freedom that our founders and creator gave us and countless service members have sacrificed to maintain. Don’t give them away!

2. Pro-Life. Abortion should not be an accepted form of birth control. Late-term abortion is clearly reprehensible and murder in my view. I am pro-life also when it comes to capital punishment. We have the capability to put murderers behind bars for life and the fact that human beings, including juries and prosecutors, make mistakes all the time warrants prison instead of death. You cannot undo lethal injection once it did its job. I only believe in killing for self and national defense. Many conservatives will not agree with me on the death penalty, but I hope they come around.

3. Border & Immigration Security. We are a sovereign nation and should keep it that way. Terrorism and migration of undesirables are valid reasons to secure our borders and reform legal immigration policy. However, we should not violate our Constitution as we beef up our security. Calling for the deportation of American citizens for their religious beliefs is a violation of our key founding principle. We should build walls, fences, and electronic security on our borders. We should also cease any policy that encourages people to illegally enter our country, such as the social programs the Obama admin has been offering them, and sanctuary cities that protect them from our laws. We should also modify our legal immigration policy to profile – yes PROFILE – potential immigrants and properly vet them to assure they are not terrorists or criminals or sympathizers of the same. We should be seeking people that will contribute to our nation and assimilate with our culture. If they want to come to America to form a mini version of the country and culture they are leaving, we don’t need them. We are a passionate and humane nation and we can accept certain refugees from persecution. But we are not a stupid or crazy people. Don’t try to make us into Europe where Islamic radicals are transforming their society. Not here!

4. Crime Does Not Pay. We should make that phrase applicable again. If you commit a crime you will have to pay a specific debt to society. Violent criminals should definitely spend a long time in a cell. If you purposely take a life and it is not self defense you forfeit your freedom forever. Here is where some conservatives will disagree with me. The War on Drugs was never waged to win. Drug and alcohol abuse are involved in some way to a majority of crimes in America. Home invasions, theft, assault, and murder usually involve drug and/or alcohol abuse. The trend is to de-criminalize and legalize drugs. This is a big mistake. Instead, we should treat drug dealers like murderers, because in many cases, that is what they are. It is not just the addicted person whose life is ruined, but entire families. Treatment should be offered to addicts, but in many cases harsher measures must be taken to break the cycle. Today, we tend to keep addicts addicted by providing them with never-ending access to methadone or other type clinics. This prevents them from ever contributing to families and society. Limit the treatment. Design a program that works. If that includes incarceration, so be it.

5. Limited Government, Fiscal Responsibility. What happened to the Republican Party’s mantra of small government? The federal government has ballooned under democrat and republican administrations and congress. Along with that is a colossal waste of taxpayers’ money and infringement of Liberty. All levels of government can be significantly trimmed. Politicians and judges have used creative license to interpret the Constitution’s definition of federal government role to include everything under the sun. This cannot continue. Get back to basics!

6. Strong Defense. If we allow our military to decline in funding and number any further, we will not be able to perform the basic function of federal government that the Constitution demands. Security of our nation from enemies, which we have many, is crucial. At the same time, we should adopt former Secretry of Defence Cap Weinberger’s rules for when it is appropriate to put military members in harm’s way. Google it. The United States is not a colonial empire and we should not always be the world’s policeman. We should always put U.S. national security interests above all, as well as honor our treaties with allies.  

7. Civil Liberties. This is a complicated one. When it comes to marriage, religion, and morality, social conservatives often conflict with fiscal conservatives. Gay marriage, transgendered rights, and the list goes on. I lean libertarian and am torn on this issue. In my opinion, marriage is a religious institution dating back far before The Declaration of Independence. The First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion. I had hoped civil unions for gays would have been sufficient as long as they had the same privileges and benefits of married couples. But the Supreme Court has ruled and it is now the law that gays can be married. Now ‘transgendered’ and people who self-identify as something other than themselves want all sorts of rights and special privileges. The result is that a small minority get to impose their wills on the majority, and religous and other freedoms are infringed upon others. For instance, a Christian baker family has lost their religious freedom in order to satisfy a gay couple who could’ve ordered a wedding cake from numerous other bakers, but insisted on making a case against the Christians. This is rediculous! Our system of government is designed to protect minorities, as it should be. But no where in the Constitution does it say minority rules, or a minority’s civil rights outweigh the majority’s rights. No more! On morality, whether you are religious or not, as a conservative you most certainly believe that a nation and its people must have a moral compass to keep them from abusing power. There IS a right and wrong. Without a moral center, many wrongs and atrocities are possible. This is my biggest concern with Mr. Donald Trump and his followers. They either don’t have or don’t care about morality.

8. Free-Market Capitalism. We did not become the greatest nation on planet Earth using socialism or communism as our economic system. We used a reasonably regulated free enterprise system where individuals and companies make profit by providing products and services to others. If you want to reap the benefits of socialism, move  to Venezuela. 

9. Fact over Fiction. Whether it be within our government, schools, media, or elsewhere, conservatives prefer dealing with fact and evidence instead of rumor, myth, or lies. Unless we are reading a novel for entertainment we like the truth, even when it hurts. To those who say there is no such thing as truth: Be Gone! Yes, there are gray areas here and there, but most things can be boiled down to true or false. Schools should stop revising history (and math) and teach the truth. There is good and bad in our history. The kids can handle it. But stop being political. They will form their own political beliefs as adults. Teachers or government don’t need to brainwash them. The media has First Amendment rights, but I implore them to stop trying to affect American politics and instead impartially report on it. This election cycle has demonstrated how corrupt both our government and media have become. The American people themselves have to become more responsible and stop spreading myth and rumor on social media. It is fairly easy to fact-check using the Internet or library. 

10. Freedom. If America can exemplify one concept, it is freedom. It is why we were founded, and what we grew and nurtured through the generations. Not everyone enjoyed freedom equally at the beginning, but like any infant, we grew and learned and are now the beacon of hope and liberty to oppressed people everywhere on the globe. Let’s keep it that way. Our founders insisted on a Bill of Rights before they approved the Constitution because they knew in order to keep our government from becoming just another dictatorship, we needed guaranteed individual freedoms. These liberties are now under constant attack by politicians, radical judges, and groups who really want to make a more powerful central government. We will no longer be America if we allow this to continue.

11. My Eleventh Commandmant! Elected officials affect our lives in many ways. Our liberty, our money, our future depend on electing people who exhibit high levels of integrity, character, honor, and conviction. Does this mean they should be rigid and inflexible? No. But they should be honest, principled, and courageous. Voters can put these type of people in office, or as has been trending, they can put waffling, unethical, power-hungry people in office. We get what we deserve!

Populists May Doom Us All

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Populists May Doom Us All
I never use the “Hitler card” lightly; in fact, I don’t think I have tossed it out there before. But this is no time to be cautious when Americans’ freedoms are at stake. After watching the Republican debate on February 13, 2016, I thought to myself that if the polls still called Trump the winner after that performance, the dangerous populist movement was well under way. Well, here we are! 

Anyone who actually watched the debate – with eyes open and just a tad bit of objectivity – would clearly see that Donald Trump revealed his true nature and political leanings, and that he had a poor debate performance. His claims that President George W. Bush didn’t keep us safe from the 9-11 terrorists attack hinted of conspiracy theory and doesn’t reflect reality. His love of eminent domain – even for private enterprise uses such as malls and casino parking lots – was never shared by republicans and conservatives in the past. His ideas on tax policy, Planned Parenthood, universal health care, and many other issues have been banner ideas in the other party, not the GOP!

Blindly accepting someone’s claims and ideas without analyzing truth, instead disregarding facts and reality is a dangerous development. The German people did that in the 20s and 30s and up rose Adolf Hitler. Trump reminds me of Hitler somewhat. I think Trump sees himself as never wrong and above critique and perhaps even God-like. 

This is a Republican primary. Where the hell are the republicans? Are they really going to toss out their principles and sense of morality because Trump said he would build a wall and make the Mexicans pay for it. Are you that superficial, republicans? 

I know a lot of independents and democrats that are staunch Trump supporters. That is why I do not believe the so-called experts who say if Trump is the nominee, he would not be elected. I think he would win the election. It is up to the republicans to come to their senses and nominate a conservative, or even a moderate for god sakes, but not a liberal populist with a dangerous lack of knowledge (what’s a nuclear triad?), no moral compass, an over-abundance of vulgarness and conceit, and contempt for the Constitution. This man should not be the one with his finger on the button or the one who will select the next few Supreme Court Justices. Our freedom, way of life, and maybe even our lives will be on the line. No, this is not hyperbole. It is a distinct possibility.

Republican Values

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An Open Letter to the Republican Party: Local, State, National

I have been a Republican for 40 years , ever since I voted for Gerald Ford in ’76, and witnessed, with dismay, the enthusiastic outburst within my Navy Boot Camp barracks when the Company Commander announced Jimmy Carter had won the election. (confession: I strayed once when I was stationed on the Left coast; there was something in the water!)

An American first, Conservative second, and then Republican, my loyalty lies with the United States Constitution and this great nation. I realize that the Republican Party needs to be a “wide tent” accepting many people with varied viewpoints, not just those that share my own conservative beliefs. Calling moderates “RINOs” and right-wingers “extremists” is not constructive or beneficial to the party, or America. I also don’t believe that if there was a conservative candidate that had a check mark next to every single conservative talking point, that that person should necessarily be the appropriate nominee, just as I do believe we NEED more than one party in our system; we NEED varied opinion and ideas. No one person or party is perfect and knows all at all times. A candidate with a staunch conservative record could also lack character and integrity, virtues I believe are crucial in a leader.

That being said, I have some deep concerns about the direction of the party, and I appreciate you taking the time to read and consider them. Please, do not take any of this personally.

America has taken an ideological turn to the left in recent years, and the Republican Party has been affected as well. As they say, the pendulum continues to swing. One thing that has been fairly steady in the past few decades, though, is republicans sticking with certain principles, such as those listed in the official Republican Party Platform: limited government, maximum freedoms and liberties, free enterprise, constitutional government, and restoring the American Dream. There is one candidate, if you look deeper and care about facts, that may be the polar opposite of these principles, and could tear the party, and the country apart more than has already been done. Here are some examples:

  • Giving fuel to Hillary Clinton’s claim that Republicans are waging a “War on Women” is not the way to win a general election. Donald Trump’s disgusting attacks on Carly Fiorina and Megyn Kelly and others does not exemplify the values I have always associated with the Republican Party. The despicable comments he made regarding Fiorina’s looks and Kelly’s “bleeding” lady parts (you know that is what he meant) should make every republican shun him. Both of those ladies possess the character and integrity that Trump seems to lack. But those comments actually helped drive his polls up. That deeply disturbs me, and it should you, as well.
  • Being captured on the battlefield and becoming a POW is not a dishonorable act. Unless your name is Bowe Bergdahl and you purposely left your post in search of comfort or alliance with the enemy, you are an American hero. John McCain was our nominee a few years back. As a conservative, I wasn’t overly-enthused about his candidacy, but I voted for him. More importantly, I recognize that his service in Vietnam as a warrior and a POW was honorable and heroic. Donald Trump only likes veterans who “weren’t captured.” Does that mean he also does not like veterans who had the audacity to be wounded? What does he think about our fallen heroes? The Republican Party that I knew valued every veteran who served honorably whether republican, democrat, or independent.
  • Republicans have always been the advocates of freedom, individual liberty, and limited government. Many in the party were outraged in 2005 when the Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision proclaimed that the government could take an individual’s property and hand it over to commercial enterprises if it fosters economic development. Trump wholeheartedly agreed with that decision and has even used it in his business dealings. Stealing someone’s property for another’s business venture is not a Republican value.
  • For years Trump was pro-choice and even favored partial-birth abortions. Then, as he contemplated a run for president a few years ago, he suddenly had a change of heart and flipped to pro-life. Whether you are pro-life or pro-choice, was this sudden switch believable? His views on universal health care fit more in the Democratic Party instead of the GOP.
  • The bankruptcies Trump’s businesses have filed over the years harmed not just his lenders. Banks and other lending institutions don’t just eat those losses, they pass them on to consumers. Us! Additionally, the banks needed bailouts, in part because of these types of business practices, and Trump supported us taxpayers paying the bill. Paying his bills. He also stiffed contractors and other hard-working Americans. If Capitalism is the “Force,” then Trump represents the “Dark Side.”
  • The Donald has made the core of his campaigning a melting pot of insults, liberal solutions, personal and vicious attacks against fellow republicans, and dishonesty. Unprofessional. I wonder if he is also hiding ulterior motives and ambitions. Former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger once remarked that presidential candidate Barack Obama was a charlatan, who was deceiving the nation, and would ultimately harm it. He was right. I fear the Republicans now have a charlatan in their midst in Donald Trump.
  • Trump’s widely recorded public tantrums remind me of a four-year-old than of a person that could be sitting in the Oval Office with the power to wage war and dramatically affect all of our lives.
  • The damage Barack Obama has done to this country in so many ways will still be coming to light well after he is out of office. When I raised my hand to “preserve and defend” the Constitution, I meant it. I will never vote for a candidate whom I believe will harm the Constitution and this country. That includes Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, and Donald Trump. If my preferred candidates are not nominated, I could vote for Bush, Christie, and even Kasich, but never Trump.

I uphold the former Republican values, not the ones that appear to be taking shape today. Trump talks tough on illegal immigration (something many of us are in agreement) and “promises” to build a wall and make Mexico pay for it; this “talk” does not qualify him as our nominee. We should look, instead, at his long history of comments and acts on a wide assortment of issues, and make a decision on them and not on his sudden flip flops on issues that make it appear he is more aligned with the Republican Party. Do not succumb to populism. His fellow candidate, Senator Ted Cruz, brought up Trump’s New York values. I go further and question today’s republican values. If they continue to align more with the other party I will be saddened that after forty years I must seek a divorce. I will have no part in harming this country or ignoring the Constitution. I fear Trump will not make America great again. Instead he will push it over the edge of the cliff where Barack Obama has placed it.

If you support Donald Trump my hope is that you will take a closer look at his record through the years. Please do not pick him for his rhetoric of the past few months. Thank you for reading this letter.

P.S. It interesting that former President Jimmy Carter’s favorite “republican” candidate is Donald Trump, because Trump is “malleable!”

 

Impeach Obama Bandwagon

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Many of my fellow conservatives have jumped on the Impeach Obama Bandwagon, some from the very beginning of his presidency. I disagree with that effort.

Democrats, apparently most Independents, and even some republicans voted for Obama—twice. He won his elections with his campaign promises of “fundamentally changing America.” That is exactly what he is doing, especially in these last 2 years of his administration.

If some of his supporters did not know what fundamental means, then they should have looked it up. Obama has not hidden his agenda. He just doesn’t talk about it much. Yes, he and his administration have lied about key components in order to get them passed by Congress or the courts. ScotusCare, for instance. His overall world view and path he has set America on is not buried in a deep cave, though. He is succeeding in changing America from its foundation roots, and also away from the free enterprise/capitalistic form of economy that we have been used to for most of our history. I heard one political pundit remark that in recent history Ronald Reagan was the last president to change America in a substantive way. Obama is undoing Reagan’s legacy, and then some. And Americans VOTED for this change!

It sickens me that Obama is, in my opinion, damaging this nation perhaps beyond repair, but democracy can be messy, and we are witnessing it at its messiest. Granted, there are elements of the Obama “regime” that are not acting like a democratic government and more closely resemble despotism. He has been aided in unbelievable fashion by the mainstream media in getting away with these undemocratic actions. When you have a propaganda machine at your command, you can get away with an awful lot of misdeeds. Many regimes throughout the 20th century stayed in power in this manner. There is only one news network where you can hear both sides of issues and actually view news about the federal government and Obama administration that other networks suppress. But this network is unmercifully vilified by the president, his supporters and propaganda machine. That reason alone is cause to watch it!

Republicans messed up when they impeached President Bill Clinton in the 90s. Yes, he got caught breaking the law with perjury. Although I believe both Clintons are guilty of more serious corruption and other crimes, Ken Starr and others could never pin them down with solid evidence. Hillary is, so far, getting away with similar behavior now. But impeaching a president on a perjury charge was a huge mistake. Most Americans assume all politicians lie constantly, especially if confronted about their sex life.

Similarly, governors and congress members of both parties have been subject to recalls or impeachments following their democratic election. What is it about democracy that so many do not like or respect? These governors, congressmen, and the president have more elections coming up and can be voted out of office if the Silent Majority got vocal for once and started taking their country back from the socialists, communists, and radicals. We don’t need impeachments, or a coup, or any other effort. Just speak out, and VOTE!

There are those, especially on the right where I hang out often, that promise they will refuse to vote if THEIR candidate is not nominated. That attitude only helps the other side win the day and continue to turn America into a socialist or communist nation. I admit, there are one or two republican candidates whom I believe would do more harm to our country than a couple of the Democrat candidates. If they were the nominations, I would not give up my right and duty to vote. I would vote for the candidate (repub or dem) whom I believe would damage America the least, then wait for the next election. It is not sacrificing principles to remain in the political arena and exercise your voting rights if your primary candidate does not win.

Our biggest effort, which we can start working on immediately, is to try and change minds about the direction America is heading. There is even much work just within the republican party on that end. A politician puts a lot of emphasis on constituents’ demands. We need to change those demands. That is the only peaceful revolution that can restore freedoms and liberties and the American Dream.

Impeachments should be reserved for more serious crimes than lying about sex or being too blunt in rhetoric or voting for a particular bill. This is America. Keep your faith in our Republic as long as it still has a chance of surviving.

Demise of Liberalism & Democratic Party?

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I get a kick out of the “talking heads” making the rounds of the news commentary shows claiming that the present ObamaCare meltdown is a signal that liberalism and the democrats are in a death spiral and that the end is near for them. I remember when Newt Gingrich and the republicans enjoyed the success from the “Contract with America” and pundits were making the same claim, that liberalism was going up in smoke.

The progressive movement might have had a slight setback at that time similar to now, but they came back with a vengeance. The progressives, or socialists, that make up a good segment of the democratic party have been inching forward with their agenda for 100 years, and they will continue to do so. They have been entrenched within the nation’s educational system and the mass media for years, which is a very powerful environment in which they can brew and mold their message and warriors.

Conservatives that believe that liberalism and the democrats have been mortally wounded are dreaming and should spend their time refining their own message and ways to communicate it, instead of counting on this latest fantasy.

The mainstream media is already starting to regroup and resume their obvious support for Obama and the democrats after their recent truthful reporting had actually started to make a difference in the polls. They will now resume their lightweight and /or untruthful reporting so that their cause is protected coming up to the 2014 elections.