Tag Archives: Ronald reagan

Newt Gingrich Proving To Be Surprisingly Strong in New Jersey

 Bookmark and ShareNew Jersey Republicans may be happy with Governor Christie’s job performance but not all of them are in agreement with his first choice for the Republican presidential nomination.  many New Jersey Republicans are throwing their weight behind former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich.  Myself included.  While I made sure to give each of the presidential candidates a fair hearing and gave them an all opportunity to earn my vote, back in November I concluded that Newt earned my endorsement and made it public on POLITICS 24/7’s  sister site, White House 2012.

Despite my support for Newt, I have been critical of him.  When mistakes have been made, like Newt Gingrich himself, I see no shame in admitting them, especially if one learns from them and does not repeat them.  And as this campaign progresses, I still believe that Newt Gingrich is the man best suited to do the job we need done in the years ahead.  And so do many New Jerseyans.  This realization has only been reinforced in the weeks since I endorsed him and until recently when I honored to be appointed the Regional Director of Central New Jersey for Newt 2012 .

The position is one that has afforded me the opportunity to get a true sense of how deep support for Newt runs.  Hundreds of volunteers across New Jersey have declared that they too belive that newt Gingrich has a proven record and solid vision for the type of true conservative reforms that our nation needs.  They understand that his he is the anti-establishment candidate and they are proud of it.  Many conservatives like the fact that Newt has always been willing to take on the establishment because he realizes that it is the political establishment that is holding us back with behemoth sized  bureaucracy and the crony capitalism of inside the Beltway political figures who allow bad personal politics to override positive public policy.

Yet today, some are again writing Newt Gingrich off.  Once again, some are trying to claim that this is a two man race that does not include Newt Gingrich.  Well those same people who were wrong before, are wrong again.  Ask people like DeLinda Ridings, who served as a Regional Director for Newt Gingrich in South Carolina.  After two back to back losses in Iowa and New Hampshire, people like DeLinda Ridings help to coordinate the effort and organize the support of Newt Gingrich supporters to pull off an astounding landslide victory that crossed every demographic.

That in and of itself is makes it worthwhile to remember that history does tend to repeat itself.  And if the enthusiasm among Newt Gingrich supporters is any indication, the victory that South Carolinians pulled off for Newt in the Palmetto State can very easily be duplicated in the Garden State and others as well.  That is especially the case given the fact that a few political lifetimes can pass between now and the New Jersey Presidential primary that will take place four months from now in June.

In that time, we are very likely going to see the position of frontrunner change hands numerous times, and while I am confident that Republicans will be united behind our candidate by the time we head to Tampa for the Republican National Convention, I am also confident that each of the candidates are going to to do their best to earn that united support till the bitter end.  In the case of New Jersey, it is one of very last battles in the nomination process and could prove to be quite pivotal in determining who the nominee is.  But as of now, I can tell you that regardless of what any state polls might indicate, the one thing they can not accurately gauge is how strongly voters stand behind their choice for President. And when it comes to the volunteers who are committing themselves to Newt in New Jersey those supporters vary from young to old.  It consists of young college students to older, retired persons.  It includes high powered attorneys to high powered, high energy Moms. school teachers, union workers, small business owners and minimum wage earners.  But regardless of their age or status, they all share at least one favorite quality about Newt.  We know that he is unafraid to challenge the status quo of Washington, D.C. and even fellow conservatives.

Newt supporters know that he will challenge traditional political thinking and force conservatives to make the Republican Party the Party of ideas once again.  We know that Newt is in the mold of great conservative thinkers like Jack Kemp who forced his economic ideas upon the Party and even sold Reaganomics to Ronald Reagan and introduced our nation to the type of Urban Enterprise Zones that revitalized once depressed and dilapidated urban centers.

They know that unlike Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich is the only candidate running for President who understands that we can’t just tinker with the our regressive tax code that is burdening our national economy and depressing every family’s economy and that we must  instead abolish our complex, failing, loophole ridden tax code, with one that offers one rate for one nation and can help grow our economy by leaps and bounds.

New Jersey Republicans understand that our ship of state can’t continue sail the rough seas created by the excessive growth of government and the ever increasing expansion of government involvement in our lives.   They know that to survive the government created tsunami in front of us, we must quickly change course with sharp turns away from the socialist path of so-called moderates and the progressiv-liberal Democrats that have hijacked the Constitution and placed it in the hands of activist judges who have a greater desire to impose on us their personal political agenda than to interpret the intention of our laws.

So I urge all New Jersey voters to remember that this race is not over.  There is a long way yet to go and I ask that you join us in supporting the only conservative reformer in the race for President…..Newt Gingrich, the conservative with a true vision, a vision fitting of our great nation.  A vision that suits the high aspirations of our nation and its people.

To join the effort, you can contact me, Anthony Del Pellegrino, at :

Newt2012CentralNJ@gmail.com

You will be directed to the coordinator of the region you residen in, and we will get you on board with Team Newt!

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Chris Chrisite’s Speech at the Reagan Library Shows Why He Should Run for President

See the video of Christie’s speech below this post and for a complete transcript of the speech, click here.

Bookmark and Share On Tuesday evening, after delivering a keynote address on “Real American exceptionalism” for the Reagan Foundation at the Reagan Library, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie definitively any speculation about his entering 2012 presidential race as a presidential candidate.

The speech Christie gave was a plain-spoken, smooth flowing, hard-hitting, presentation that demonstrated the wealth of endless potential that could be unleashed in America by combining Republican principles with the type of frank and honest leadership that comes only from people of true integrity. Christie argued his case for the awesome power of the two when combined, by linking the history of Reagan Republicanism and Reagan’s leadership, to Obama socialism and Obama’s lack of leadership. He then essentially described how the two means do not lead to the same end. He made this point further by also contrasting between what is getting done in New Jersey under his management, with what is or isn’t getting done in Washington, DC under President Obama’s mismanagement.

The speech was, to use a phrase that Christie used, “a parable of principle“, which offered a roadmap to true American exceptionalism. As for the details of the speech, I am intentionally leaving them out. That is because I wish not to deprive anyone of the opportunity to hear them or read them yourself, in Christie’s own words. Hence the reason for the video and transcript provided for you within this post.

What I will tell you is that some of the most entertaining and heartfelt moments came during the brief question and answer period once the speech was over.

It was then that Christie laced his honesty with a unique mix of Jersey-style bluntness and endearing humor to stake out some well received positions and make viewers also understand why so many want him to seek the Republican nomination for President.

On that topic, while a Christie candidacy was first foremost on the minds of all who were listening, it was not the first question asked upon completion of Christie’s keynote address. The first question was on illegal immigration and his thoughts on in-state tuition for illegal immigrants. In his answer, Christie explained that while he believes that our borders must be secured, he did not believe that states and taxpayers had any responsibility to subsidize illegal immigrants. And going a step further, the never shy New Jersey Governor took a swipe at Texas Governor Rick Perry. “And I don’t think that’s heartless. I think it’s common sense”, said Christie.

The second question for the Governor came from a man who asked The Governor if he was considering a run for President. To this Christie joked, that he was disappointed in the audience gathered before him. He said that for that to be the second question and not the first, showed him that they were not demonstrating America exceptionalism. He continued by explaining that he was not running and cited a video prepared by Politico.com as the best and most explanatory answer he could offer. The video spliced together a dozen or so different interviews from the past year in which Christie stated that he is not running and why.

But almost immediately following that answer, a questioner from the balcony was given the mic. This person did not ask a question. In very heartfelt terms, she instead made a request of the Governor and said “Please reconsider. We can’t wait till 2016. Your Country needs you”. To this Christie explained that he understood but he joked that while he is flattered and that while no politician’s ego is so small that they would demand people stop asking them to become the leader of the free world, he must keep answering “no”. He went on to say ,“I’m just a kid from Jersey who feels like I’m the luckiest guy in the world to have the opportunity that I have to be the governor of my state.” He added “That heartfelt message you gave me is also not a reason for me to do it. That reason has to reside inside me.”

Christie’s appearance at the Reagan Library was truly powerful and ironically, he sounded like a presidential candidate. He subtly drew similarities between his leadership as a Governor and Ronald Reagan’s as a President. He also aggressively, but appropriately tore apart President Obama and successfully used the President’s own words against him. And he even took a shot at someone who would be opposing him if he were to run in the Republican primary. That combined with the sudden public leaks and comments involving what was the most recent flurry of speculation about Christie and the presidency, I have come to believe that history will reveal that in late September of 2011, New Jersey Governor Christopher J. Christie was about to run for President of the United States. But at the last minute, [fill in the blank] was the determining factor that caused him to change his mind and not announce his candidacy. Remember, you heard it here first.

That view may or may not be confirmed but upon the conclusion of Christie’s appearance at the Reagan Library, there are two things we all now know with certainty. One is that Chris Christie is authentic. He is the real deal. Love him or hate him, you can rest assured that you are loving or hating the real Chris Christie. The other thing that we now know definitively is that Chris Christie is not running for President in 2012. Vice President is another story that we will begin to write about after we finish the chapter that reveals who the presidential nominee is. So now, the only big name left available for speculation is Sarah Palin.

On a last note, I would like to make a personal admission.

As a resident of New Jersey who for the last twenty months has been living under the rule of Governor Christie, after listening to him at the Reagan Library last night, I can honestly tell you that for the first time in the fifteen years that this Brooklyn boy has lived the Garden State, I am proud to call it home, and for the for the first time in my life, I am truly proud to tell people who my Governor is.

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Paying Tribute To the Man Who Sold Reaganomics To Ronald Reagan

Jack F. KempBookmark and Share    Today marks the thirtieth anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s signing of the Kemp-Roth Tax Cut Act of 1981. The bill’s official legislative name was the Economic Recovery Tax Act. The legislation was authored by Jack Kemp in conjunction with Senator William Roth. Both men were co-sponsors of the legislation but Jack Kemp was the main architect and  the man  credited  for  “selling Reaganomics to Ronald Reagan.”    Then Congressman Jack Kemp, had introduced the Economic Recovery Tax Act in the House, several times before  the 1981 legislative session, but Democrat Congressional leaders and a Democrat President failed to move on it.

But once Reagan became President, he took the initiative to act on it and successfully pushed The Kemp-Roth bill through Congress. Were it not for Reagan, the economy-saving legislative initiative may never have passed, but were it not for Jack Kemp, it may never have existed in a way that was quite as strong and definitive as it wound up being.

The Kemp-Roth Tax Cut amended the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 and was responsible for encouraging the economic growth through:

  • The reduction of individual tax rates;
  • By expensing depreciable property; and
  • Creating incentives for savings and other small businesses.

The main features of the Act were responsible for:

  • Reducing the tax rates by 25% over three years;
  • Accelerating depreciation deductions;
  • Indexing of individual income tax parameters;
  • Excluding income of two earner married couple by 10 %;
  • Reducing windfall profit taxes; and
  • And expanding provisions for employees stock ownership plans.

Once enacted, the days of malaise that existed under the old tax code during the Carter years, turned into the days of rejuvenation. It took a while to actually turn the economy around but it didn’t take as long as many predicted and once the economy did turn the corner, it took off.

Jack Kemp is no longer with us , but if he was I am sure he would repeat the following words that he once spoke:

“Every time in this century we’ve lowered the tax rates across the board, on employment, on saving, investment and risk-taking in this economy, revenues went up, not down.”

And he would be right.

We need more leaders like Jack Kemp today, but until one is found, we have the Kemp legacy to help guide us, and hopefully we will soon have leaders who will see that light that Jack Kemp, William Roth, and Ronald Reagan once shed upon us with their faith in less government, less spending, less taxation, and more freedom.

Today however, on this thirtieth anniversary of the signing in to law of the 1981 Economic Recovery Tax Act (ERTA), I ask that you pay homage to Jack Kemp by visiting a Facebook page that has been dedicated to him, his life, his work and his legacy. Please visit the Jack F. Kemp Facebook page and press the “like” button. Show your appreciation for him, his leadership and his belief in people more than government, and the free market than the government bureaucracy

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New Jersey Celebrates Ronald Reagan’s 100th Birthday with Michael Ragan

Bookmark and Share On Friday, New Jersey Assemblyman Jay Webber held his 8th annual New Jersey Reagan Day Dinner. What started out 8 years ago as a fine and fun cozy event that was first held in a local firehouse, was now held in the grand ballroom of the Sheraton where over 650 people gathered to commemorate Ronald Reagan and celebrate his life and achievements on the 100th anniversary of his birth.

Among the many in attendance included a large number of state senators and assemblymen including Assemblymen Michael Carroll, Anthony Bucco, Alex DeCroce, State Senator Joe Pennachio and a many others from the state legislature. Also attending was former New Jersey Governor Tom Kean. I had the fortune to sit with congressional candidate Anna Little, who has not stopped campaigning as she prepares to force Frank Pallone in to an long overdue retirement in 2012.

Assemblyman Jay Webber

All across America, literally thousands of such events were taking place on this weekend, but thanks to Assemblyman Webber and the Young Americans Foundation, New Jersey’s celebration featured a keynote address by President Reagan’s son. As he noted in his opening remarks, “not the son who dances,”. The speech delivered on this night was by the Reagan son who represents conservative principles and maintains his father’s legacy……..Michael Reagan.

Reagan offered those in attendance, a peek into the personal side of Reagan, but it each personal tale quickly tied in to the political side of our 40th and demonstrated that President Reagan leadership was less politics and more principle. Ronald Reagan was not interested in playing politics. He was not a man who followed polls to determine his policies, he was a man who followed his beliefs in what he thought was best for the American people. And as demonstrated in the stories told by Michael Reagan, those believes were founded in Reagan’s commitment to the conservative values and principles that he helped to make the mainstream beliefs of the Republican Party.

One of the stories Mike Reagan told was about when as a young man in the early 1960’s, he asked his father for a raise in his allowance. Michael Reagan than explained how his father who was the type of person whom if you asked what time it was, would tell you how the watch that told you the time, was made, quickly broke in to a long dissertation about how much it cost for food, maintaining their ranch and how much in taxes the government took away from every dollar earned. Michael Reagan explained that by the time he was done, he offered his father back half of the allowance that he had given him. Then his father turned to him and said, “I don’t want half your allowance back, but I’ll make you a promise. When we elect a President who cuts taxes, I’ll raise your allowance”.

According to Michael Reagan, in 1964, after LBJ pushed through the Kennedy tax cuts, his father told him a promise is a promise and raised his allowance to five dollars. The only problem was in 1964, Michael was in high school and he told the audience, while his father may have thought that was a lot of money, as kid in high school, he sure didn’t. But he always remembered how his father kept his promises.

Reagan cited another example of promises kept when he revealed that the selection of Sandra Day O’Connor to the Supreme Court was the result of a promise made to his daughter Maureen.

During the 1980 campaign, Ronald Reagan’s advisors were concerned with how Maureen’s outspoken support for the ERA would impact on Reagan during the primaries. So they along with her father, approached Maureen about it. Her response was, “I’ll pull back on the Equal Rights Amendment but only if you agree that if elected President, you appoint the first woman to the United States Supreme Court”. Ronald Reagan agreed. And when an opening became available, he appointed Sandra day O’Connor, the first woman on the highest court in the land.

It was this belief in promises being sacred that influenced the direction of the Reagan presidency. As Michael Reagan explained, his father once told him that one of the reasons he wanted to become President was because he was tired of the United States always sitting down with the Soviet Union and given something up in order form to them reach any agreement. As a result Ronald Reagan made a personal promise to change that by insuring that he would bring about a day when  the Soviet Union would give up something instead. Ronald Reagan kept that promise.

There were many more insightful tales and a number of lighthearted but hysterical stories involving the Secret Service. All together, Michael Reagan delivered an address that reinforced the audiences admiration and appreciation for President Reagan and everyone agreed that they felt a strong bond to Ronald Reagan the person, not just the politician.

When it was over, Michael Reagan took questions. One member of the audience asked if he was leaning in a particular direction when it came towards a Republican nominee for President in 2012. Reagan offered no sign of favoritism towards any candidate. However he did have advice for Republicans in 2012.

Mike Reagan told the capacity crowd that he firmly believes no matter who the G.O.P. nominates, they should adhere to the 80/20 rule his father believed in. Ronald Reagan once famously stated “The person who agrees with you 80 percent of the time is a friend and an ally – not a 20 percent traitor.” It is that thinking which Michael Reagan told the audience to remember in November of 2012.

He added;

“Let me put it to you this way, who will you support….Sarah Palin or Barack Obama? Paul Ryan or Barack Obama? Rick Perry or Barack Obama?.

As for the opinions of some of the New Jersey elected officials in the room, I took an unofficial and off the record poll of where they stand right now regarding 2012. While I will not reveal who said what, I can tell you that like Michael Reagan, none endorsed any particular presidential contenders, but as for who they like as we go into the nominating process, names like Huckabee, Daniels, Romney, Giuliani and several others came up. So from the looks of it, there is not any early coordinated effort by the influential elected officials of the state to consolidate support for anyone in particular. That in my view is a good thing. It would be good for New Jersey to have as many as candidates as possible, come to the Garden State and spend their money here while also campaigning among us and earning our support based upon their ideas and abilities.

Now if only we can get our elected officials to change our primary system to a proportionate one rather than a winner-take-all contest. With New Jersey being stuck in between the New York and Philadelphia markets, campaigning here is more expensive than in most states. As such, if candidates for the nomination have no chance at picking up at least a few delegates, they are less inclined to invest any time or money here. That causes New Jersey to lose out. But that is for another day. As for this particular Friday and the New Jersey Reagan Day Dinner held on it, everyone was a winner. However the biggest winner of all was Jay Webber and his exceptional and professional staff and volunteers who pulled off a well planned, well executed, smooth running, memorably enjoyable evening that gave all of us the opportunity to celebrate one of nation’s greatest contemporary American heroes……President Ronald Reagan.

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Why Democrats Are Going Down

Bookmark and Share    President Obama rose to power on a wave of enthusiasm and popularity that was based on a vision for America that would transform us from being a war weary, economically troubled nation, into one that would be an economic powerhouse at peace with the world and ready to provide a chicken in every pot and car in every garage.

Problem is that almost two years later, the economy has worsened, unemployment has risen, the world is far from being a more peaceful place and his attempts to put a chicken in every pot with socialist style healthcare and a car in every garage with Cash-For-Clunkers have fallen short of living up to the promise that many saw in candidate Obama.

President Obama’s plan for delivering hope and change was based on nothing but one single approach……spending. The President’s answer to everything has simply been to spend. His answer to high unemployment was to spend little more than $250,000 per new job created……temporary and unsustainable jobs. Jobs that don’t even pay an eighth of the amount it cost taxpayers to create. His answer to saving the environment from carbon emissions was to spend money by giving Americans thousands of dollars for cars that were in many cases only worth hundreds of dollars. His answer to making healthcare more affordable was to have the federal government take control of it at a cost that is now projected to be well over a trillion dollars with an additional $10 to $20 billion in administrative costs to implement Obamacare over the next ten years and with $105 billion over the same 10 year period for Congress to fund discretionary programs in the overhaul.

In the meantime, his promise to get unemployment below a still staggering 8.0% has failed to materialize, the American auto industry is still struggling along with banks, and big and small businesses alike. And through it all, the only concrete results of the Obama Administration to date is a quadrupling of the national debt and a richer and happier China that owns most of our debt.

And while the Chinese celebrate and develop a new generation of fighters that could make our aircraft carriers and battleships obsolete, President Obama has done nothing to keep us safe from nuclear proliferation in the Mid East and on the Korean Peninsula. But he did scrap our promised non-offensive missile defense shield in Europe before the Polish Prime Minister was killed in a plane crash. That new window of opportunity for potential threats to fly through, certainly did not make the world safer for us, our allies or our interests, but so long as it is what the Russians and Iranian’s wanted, who cares right? I mean after all, didn’t President Obama promise to make our enemies in the world love us? How’s that been going for us? Have you noticed the friendlier tone of the explosives that terrorists are using these days or the warm and fuzzy feel good tone of Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?

With consumer confidence at one of its lowest points in years, unemployment is at it highest since the 80’s, Wall Street is bouncing up and down in uncontrollable spasms of brief glimpses of optimism and long durations of fear, and the world is at greater risk from the nuclear ambitions and muscle flexing of North Korea and Iran, it is no wonder why the President’s base, his ardent liberal followers and cheerleaders, are jumping ship and even taking shots at him. After nearly year two years of an aggressive “Blame Bush” policy, and no credit of his own to lay claim to, Democrats are finding it necessary to not just run from the Obama agenda and its creators but they are beginning to have to show voters that they are opposing their President. Smart move when you consider that last year, all of the candidates that President Obama campaigned for, from Virginia to New Jersey and even Massachusetts, lost…..big time.

The situation is an extremely sad one for Americans. For all the freshness and change that Americans saw in then Senator Obama in 2008, in 2010 he is about as fresh as rotten eggs and for all his reforms, there is so little actual change that it  has left an already cynical electorate feeling duped and even more cynical than they were before.

Include also the fact that despite being our first multi-racial President, racial tensions are on the rise with groups like the New Black Panthers threatening to kill white babies and the NAACP crying racism for every single disagreement on any single issue. The Obama Administration has even inspired tens of millions Americans into activism in the cause of political revolution, one that the left tries to write off as a race based revolution.

At the moment President Obama’s presidency is exemplified by the BP oil disaster in the Gulf. His Administration seems like a broken pipe that has money flowing out of it uncontrollably while he sits and waits for something to happen that will fix the deficit, the out of control unemployment rate and shrinking economy. It seems that much like the way he handled the Gulf oil disaster, he is handling everything else, from the economy, to foreign affairs, all the same way……helplessly,  much like Jimmy Carter in the late 70’s when Iran took Americans Hostage for 444 days.

The failures of President Obama and his inability to live up to the messianic image and expectations that his presidential campaign created, now puts him and his Party in dire straights. But that fault is not President Obama’s alone. All of the most controversial issues of the past year and a half were settled along strictly partisan lines. And to achieve these Party lines votes, the American people saw a process led by Democrats that illustrated all that we despise about politics. They saw legislators bribe each other with pork barrel, deficit spending and back room deals that cut out the loyal opposition from having any legitimate input. They saw attempts to escape responsibility for passage of controversial legislation by trying to simply “deem” bills passed,  rather than actually having a recorded vote. Voters saw Democrats pass legislation along partisan lines without even reading the bills they voted on.

The last year and a half has been ugly indeed. Marred with blunders, indecision, and scandals and through it all, Democrats stood quietly by and accepted it. They followed their leader and held the Party line. Unfortunately for them though, that line is attached to sinking fortunes.

As the midterm elections approach, Democrats are about to implode and our President is about to encounter one of the most embarrassing elections since Walter Mondale walked away with a win in only one state against Ronald Reagan in 1984.

This is because, as I said, Democrats have tied their fortunes to the President and now they find that it is too late to cut the cord and distance themselves from him. And the reasons for the die being cast by President Obama are simple.

He has failed to inspire us. His speeches are dull and preaching what seems to be a professorial elitism of a distant philosophy that is detached from reality. He has lost our faith and trust as exemplified in recent polls conducted by your more pro-Obama media outlets and by the dramatic number of people who feel our government is headed in the wrong direction. His handling of the Gulf oil disaster has shown him to be indecisive and his constant blaming of all that he fails to succeed at on George Bush has people believing that President Obama is unwilling to take responsibility for his own presidency. This has all helped create a lack of confidence in the leadership being provided by him and his Party.

On foreign affairs and national security, President Obama has done nothing but apologize for America and back down to our adversaries as demonstrated in the case with a missile defense system in Poland that was meant to  insure our allies security in the face of possible Russian aggression, and a lack of an aggressive stand against the nuclear ambitions of Iran and North Korea. Then there was the stand in support of Hugo Chavez’s ousted Marxists friend in Honduras, who was constitutionally removed from office, and the returning of the bust of the highly respected hero, Winston Churchill, to the British.  All of these recorded instances help to create the impression that America’s foreign policy is upside down and bass ackwards. The Obama foreign affairs policy of appeasement and strategic blunders has actually weakened America’s standing in the world and has been uninspiring at home and abroad.

All of this has had nothing but a demoralizing effect on America and our allies. Over 18 months into the Obama presidency and Americans not only know that they are no better now than they were before he took office.  Instead  they understand that with a bigger government, a quadrupled debt, a stagnant economy and enemies emboldened by our timidity, we are in fact much worse off than we were 18 months ago.

Americans can be patient people. They are willing to give our leaders a chance, but we begin to lose our patience when we see that we are taking three or four steps back for every one step forward that we might be taking. And that is exactly where we are at now, with little more than ten weeks to go before the midterm elections.

And it should be noted that with only that much time to go before November, time is not on the side of the Democrats.

The typical bulk of all campaigning takes place between Labor Day and Election Day. In this election cycle, Labor Day comes late, September 6th. And Election day falls on November 2nd, the first rather than the second week of November . That makes for the shortest possible general election cycle their could be . That in turn means that even if Democrats can begin to turn their fortunes around, they will have little time to catch up to, and then surpass Republicans, who have the wind behind their backs.

This seemingly insignificant amount of time that the traditional campaign season will lack, can make all the difference in an election. As University of Virginia Professor and political pundit par excellence notes, in 1968, if Hubert Humphrey had just one more week in that condensed election cycle, it is more than likely that he would have caught up to and passed Richard Nixon.

So all things considered, the future is not looking good for liberalism and its Democratic home in America. But considering all the reasons why, it is quite understandable.

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28 Years Ago The Economy Recovered By Giving Freedom A Chance

Bookmark and Share   Last week marked the 28th anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s signing of the 1981 Economic Recovery Tax Act. When it comes to the economic recovery methods that we have adopted b.govtoday,  it is appallingly easy to see that we our government has lost its way since then.
 
The approach to government that Reagan instilled in the conduct of contemporary conservative governance was basic. It was rooted in the belief that the engine which propelled America’s greatness was not government but the nation’s people.
 
It was centered around freedom and the allowance for the natural progression of freedom and the free market to grow our economy, spread wealth and create a sustainable prosperity for all.
 
The Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 was an implementation of that thinking, which reduced tax rates and unleashed one of greatest economic recoveries our nation has ever seen. It eventually brought unemployment down from a high of 10.6% to 5.4% and drastically eliminated inflation. With consumer prices at the highest peacetime rate on record-up 13.3 percent in 1979, three years later, the rate of inflation had slowed considerably, with the Consumer Price Index advancing only 3.8 percent during that same year and from there on throughout the rest of the 80’s and 90’s the actual inflation rate remained well below 5%.
 
That whole process is in stark contrast to the economic recovery acts that we saw our government begin to practice in 2008 and repeat in 2009.
 
Those recovery acts deceptively added the word reinvestment to them and decidedly rejected the successful thinking behind the 1981 measure designed for the same purpose that the most recent bills were.
 
The newestt recovery measures taken were nothing more than a bid for more government and a grab at more centralized government that initiated unfunded mandates and essentially took more money away from the people rather than afford them the chance to keep more of their money.

The modern recovery acts were designed to create more jobs and spur more spending. Yet to date, with less than 10% of the monies slotted for these initiatives spent and the bulk of it not expected to be allocated for years to come, little benefit has actually been seen. And the fact of the matter is that in the end little will be seen.

With only a fraction of the stimulus money having been spent to date, a recent poll determined that 72 percent of Americans want the unused portion of the $787 billion dollar stimulus package returned to taxpayers. They believe it would do more to boost the economy than having the government spend it. That sentiment runs deep through out society as a 59% majority of Democrats, 87% majority of Republicans and 70% majority of independents believe that the money should be returned to taxpayers. This was the same Reagan thinking and policy that allowed for the recovery that we saw in the 80’s.

In all honesty, when you look at a major goal of the recent recovery act, you will see that is the creation of jobs. But the package only creates government jobs. By nature, government jobs do not sustain themselves. They do not create a market which produces a profit that generates a self funding source for themselves. They are funded through taxes. But in addition to the need for a continuous stream of tax dollars to finance these government jobs is the problem that the jobs created by these modern recovery attempts are only temporary.

The work that will be created through the bills are have no enduring future. For instance, once a road is built, it is done. Maintenance for that road will always be required but that alone does not employ the number of workers required to build that road originally.

This is just one example of what may produce a positive effect but will assuredly only be a temporary effect from the most expensive pieces of legislation in history. Ultimately the recent stimulus packages are legislative creations which simply have no long term benefits. But they will have damaging long term effects induced by the ensuing debt that these most recent recovery packages create and the tax burden that their debt will inevitably produce.

Conversely, the recovery act that people like Congressman Jack Kemp and Senator William Roth were responsible for developing was  a stimulus package that allowed for the people to posses more money and it allowed for them to spend more and invest more. All of which energized an entrepreneurial revival that created more self sustaining, permanent jobs and more investment.  All of which spurred a natural cycle of sustainable growth that did not rely on government spending and federal taxation.

28 years later and intermittent failures to acknowledge the success of this thinking at the federal level continues to threaten our economic stability and jeopardizes the freedom based fabric of our American future.

On the day before the anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s signing of the successful recovery measures that we took in 1981, The Center for Fiscal Accountability released it’s annual report which provides evidence to my claim.

The report demonstrated that the average American devotes 224 days of work a year to simply cover the costs of government mandated programs and controls and that the federal government demands approximately 61½ % of our combined national income.

That’s far more than half of what we earn.

The number of days that Americans must work to cover this cost of government allows The Center for Fiscal Accountability to establish what they call Cost of Government Day.  Based on a national average that day for all Americans was August 12th.  That is 26 more days than least year. And it means that when you come down to it, you worked the first 8 months and twelve days of the year to fund the government. 

But if you want an even greater example of just how burdensome and oppressive the crushing costs of government can be, lets take a look at my home state of New Jersey.

While the 2009 national average for the Cost of Government day falls on August 12th, for New Jerseyan’s the Cost of Government Day falls on September 6th, 25 days later than the national date.

One of the state’s few true conservative leaders, State Assemblyman Jay Webber stated that “Since 2002, the average family of four in New Jersey has seen a state tax increase of more than $10,000, a wallop to the wallet by far the worst in the entire nation. The state’s citizens have been saddled with a cumulative tax increase of $21.2 billion from FY2003 to FY2009. We have experienced 108 new or increased taxes in just 8 years—on income, sales, estates, employees, employers, home sales, televisions, phone bills, motor vehicles, tires, and many more items. And that does not even count the state’s record-setting property taxes, which have skyrocketed 54.8 percent since 2002 and amount to $6,500 per household. New Jersey collects more property taxes per capita than any other state.

All of this is a direct result of increased government programs and an increased size of government. It demonstrates that more government is not the answer and that a growing bureaucracy does little to solve problems but much to create more problems and expenses.

But New Jersey is not the state with the latest Cost of Government Day. Connecticut has the latest date, surpassing New Jersey by one day. Behind New Jersey is New York, August 31st (243 days out of the year), followed by California, August 23rd, (235 days) and the fifth worst is Maryland, August 21st, (233 days).

When looking at these states you will find a direct correlation between their overregulation, social engineering programs and high costs of living but you will not find a connection between those characteristics and booming business environments, high employment, government efficiency and a quality of life significantly superior to anywhere else. What that means is that despite all their regulation, government provided services and taxes and fees in these five states, Americans still have no good reason to want to live in them.

In fact in New Jersey it is just the opposite. People are fleeing the Garden State to find jobs, affordable homes and bearable tax rates that will allow them to live comfortably and with a sense of freedom.

All of this makes one wonder whether or not we should really be trying to establish such things as government controlled healthcare. It also makes us question how wise it was to create an economic recovery that throws more and more money into what apparently is responsible for holding the economy and taxpayers back…….government.

The Kemp Roth Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981 that Ronald Reagan championed, worked twenty eight years ago. It invested in the people and our entrepreneurial spirit. But the so called recovery and reinvestment act of 2009 is far different. It takes money and control away from the people and invests it in government.

The Obama administration may call it “reinvestment” but by all proven standards, I call it a bad investment.

Take a moment to watch the video below of the fateful moment 28 years ago when Ronald Reagan signed the economic recovery package that brought us out of economic despair.  Hear in his own words the keys to its success

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For Republicans Only: Rebuilding and Reinvigorating the Nation and Party-PART II

Bookmark and Share    In the first part of this series we pointed out that the devastating losses of 2006 and 2008 and the loss of the White House produced a severe shortage of prominent Republican figures on the national stage. reprebrand1Without an individual whom can be that face and without the party putting forth cohesive policy paths, on all levels, the G.O.P. is adrift in a turbulent sea of waves created by a torrent of liberal initiatives.

This situation led us to establish a few things.

First we must get everyone on the same page and identify the problems that face the nation and their causes and then paint a picture of those problems that can be depicted in the form of a common enemy. It was determined that we could easily call that enemy “the government” and show it to be the common antagonist in our lives that all Americans can rally with Republicans against.

We also established that we need a figure who without being a threat to any other Republican’s presidential ambitions, can provide the national voice for the message that the G.O.P. needs to get out.

That person was suggested in Part I, but putting aside exactly who is best suited to be the messenger, let us focus on the message.

Under President Obama, and the Democrat led Congress, it is quite apparent that a significant portion of society is finally beginning to question just how much control they want any American federal government to have over their lives.

This thinking is not new. Such sentiments have been eroding at the popularity of both the Republican and Democrat parties. It also accounts for the fairly significant and deep rooted, loyal base, of national support that Dr. Ron Paul, a Texas congressman has. Even though Ron Paul caucuses with Republicans and runs as one, he is at heart, a libertarian and it is to the libertarian party that we have lost many Republicans.

We must get them back and we can do so if we combat the government enemy by stressing less government, less government fiats upon the people that limit their freedoms, more economic and educational opportunities and more ethical political leaders.

As previously mentioned, this approach, as it was under Ronald Reagan, describes government as the enemy……the common enemy that the G.O.P. can inspire the American people to rally behind in the fight against the enemy.

By making it clear that while we are not proposing that there be no government, we must make it understood that as government is creating more problems than it is solving and spends more than it ever takes in, it must be curbed. It must be reduced in size and scope in order to stop costing the American people more than it is worth and to be effective in those areas which it should and could be effective.

With the government now owning financial institutions, car companies and getting more and more into the business of business, people are becoming increasingly skeptical. This encroaching government control is made even more threatening with the liberal passage of such things as Cap-and-Trade and now socialized medicine. Even senior citizens are beginning to oppose the administrations attempt to control their treatment and coverage in the face of aging and declining health.

All of this will not only begin to deteriorate our national quality of life, it will also start costing more. The more control that government has, the more money it needs to implement and maintain those controls

This message must and can be conveyed in many different ways and in regards to just about every issue that comes up. But in our message, as we unite Americans in combating our “common enemy”, we must also produce alternatives. To gain the peoples trust and recapture the majority in Congress, we must offer policy alternatives that flow from principles. Those principles are the same ones found in the Constitution and they are the principles of freedom. They are also the principles which many former Republicans who are now libertarians have come to realize we are drifting away from with increased speed as everyday passes by.

We must demonstrate that the Democrats are trying to play God by creating a centralized government power structure that overrides state’s rights and individual’s rights and has a hand in every single aspect of our lives.

But before Republicans oppose any action of the President or the Democrat controlled congress, they must have their policy alternative to offer at the same time.

This must be done in such a way that everyone from Republican Governors, and state legislative leaders, members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are all on the same page and speaking the same policy message and theme. To coordinate this, our Republican Senate Leader, Mitch McConnell and our leader of the House, Republican Minority Leader John Boehner must work together. Coordination must also be made with the state Republican organizations and the Republican Governors Association and its mayoral counterparts. The RNC would be the perfect entity for such coordination and through them the RGA, NRSC and NRCC could all be on message and pushing for the same policies. Policies that could be a part of what Republicans could call “The American Agenda”.

In shaping that American Agenda the G.O.P must also politically incorporate other objectives into it.

They must rebrand themselves and capitalize on the displeasure with Democrat overreach, and their corporate welfare and dependency politics. This can be done by showing that the new GOP is smarter, younger and more diverse and more in touch with the founding principles that have to date made America great. In addition to having that one trusted, proven and articulate face of the party conveying our national message, allow the Sarah Palins, Eric Cantors, Bobby Jindals, Aaron Schocks, Michelle Bachmann’s, Cathy McMorris Rodgers‘, John Thunes and a host of other vital young Republicans to be in the forefront. Flood the market with fresh faces that have a clean slate and smart, succinct messages. Then deliver the fresh, smart and forward looking message that will be contained in our “American Agenda”.

That agenda should contemplate the adoption of some policy risks and give thought to making some changes that demonstrate our faith in freedom, attracts young voters and changes the national conversation.

Such can be done by crafting our American Agenda with the following directions:

A). – Consider the legalization of certain drugs :

-Demonstrate that we know that freedom means people have a right to do what they like with their bodies whether it is good or bad so long as it does not take the lives of others or infringe on the rights of others.

B). – Support Domestic Unions :

-Shake everything up and get the state out of the marriage business by allowing churches, mosques and temples to marry those they choose. That is the business of their God, not the federal government.  At the same time, do not seek to have government redefine marriage.  Allow the government to preserve the religious sanctity of marriage while also preserving its constitutional civic responsibilities and perform Domestic Unions that ensure that people who unite contractually are treated equally before the law, as the Constitution requires.

Aside from “shaking things up”, we must  address healthcare and present a renewed commitment on some of those issues the party is traditionally strongest on and implement policy solutions that demonstrate our convictions to our nations Constitution.

An approach to the issue of healthcare should be one that is not based on the failed socialist policy initiatives that our nation has shunned and fought against. That would lead us to adopt some of , but not the only, following constitutionally driven approaches into our “American Agenda”.

C). – HealthCare Opportunities :

-Offer the type of “change” in healthcare that we can live with and have the federal government adjust what it can and should change on the issue. For instance (1) .-Tort Reform.   It will have a drastic effect on the rising cost of healthcare in America. (2).- Portability. The current lack of portability prevents people from keeping their coverage when they change jobs or relocate and often they can not continue with the same coverage they have throughout their lives as other changes in their lives occur. Federal action that would allow for the portability of health insurance would solve this problem and help to stabilize insurance markets, reduce costs and ultimately reduce the fluctuating number of uninsured in America.  ( 3). – Enact a policy toolbox of federal initiatives that states could include and federal funding to the states would be linked to success in reaching the goals. With federal legislative guidelines and financial support, state experimentation would produce a myriad of various solutions and in time the best solutions for each state will evolve into better and stronger healthcare availability options for all states. (4).- Incentivise good health and fitness by offering limited tax credits for gym memberships and fitness equipment.

On those issues that the G.O.P has consistently been strong on, the new “American Agenda” must reinforce those strengths with the following items:

D). – Means-test Everything :

-If any federal social programs are to exist, they must be designed to help those whom are truly needy. Government welfare programs like Medicare for the rich are unreasonable and unacceptable ands we need to make that clear. For those who will rightfully point out that constitutional grounds for any “federal social programs”, are at the very least questionable, they must understand the need for compromises that can help begin to change attitudes and minds. This is one such compromise. If we are to have such programs they must not be abused or overextended.

E). – Taxpayer Bill of Rights & Balanced Budget :

-After the current massive expansion and growth of government by Democrats, people will want government to shrink. By creating a Taxpayer Bill of Rights that will lock government revenues in at population plus inflation as measured by acceptable cost of living indices we can assure people that we will be at the very least stop government from growing. Then add limits on national debt that would force cuts and stop passing the national credit card and its bill to future generations.

F). – Environmental Security not Global Warming: “More Obvious Conservation Methods, Not More Taxes” :

-Call it environmental security and dedicate ourselves to protecting and preserving our environment by funding such things as geo-engineering and sequestration technology but not by sucking the finances of the American people during times of economic hardship for an Al Gore hypothesis that can only be conclusively proven through the evidence produced by the passage of another million years. The G.O.P. must highlight the undeniable, rational pro-environment record that we have extending as far back as Theodore Roosevelt and we must get in the forefront of the issue by demonstrating that the historic Cap-and-Trade measure adopted by liberals is more than irrational, it is dangerous, ineffective and another example of overreaching control that taxes us on air while destroying the long-term health of our economy and individual’s economic prosperity.

G). – Enforce Our Fundamental Belief In National Sovereignty and Freedom :

-The administrations “globalization” policy is a threat to us on many levels. It puts our security, sovereignty, economy and national heritage at risk. We must therefore (1). – Implement an Open Arms-Secure Borders Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill that welcomes and protects legal immigrants, secures our borders and eliminates the tolerance for illegal immigrants who weigh heavily on our law enforcement capabilities, emergency services and economic prosperity. (2). – Declare our united support for an English First, Not English Only Bill. (3).- Make it clear that our government will not excuse, or make excuses for, those enemies of freedom who hinder progress in areas of our interests or seek to inflict harm on us or our allies. The electorate must be clear on the fact that Republicans do not buy in to the Democrat approach to foreign policy which leads us to believe that Americans should feel guilty for defending our nation, the cause of freedom or our national sovereignty, heritage or interests. (4).- Seek to curtail the use of Eminent Domain abuses by eliminating federal funding for any state or municipal projects that use eminent domain to acquire land.  It must be made clear that the constitutional right to property cannot be abrdged.

H). – Energy Independence :

-The government must take advantage of all available sound domestic energy sources while promoting the independent study of advanced uses for clean, renewable energy technologies.

I). – Reform How Government Does Business And Limit Election Spending

-Demonstrate that we not only acknowledge the political culture of corruption and shady tactics but that we stand against it with reforms to prevent it. (1).- Eliminate the public financing option for federal elections. Make it clear that we do not want taxpayers spending money for politicians to lie us in attempt to get our vote. (2.) – At the same time, place a spending limit on all elections for all federal offices. (3.)- Adopt the Enumerated Powers Act which forces all legislative initiatives and federal spending to be supported by the clause in the Constitution that proves it to be a proper measure for the federal government to undertake. (4.) – Pass a bill drafting amendment that prohibits spending measures and regulations that are unrelated to that bill from being tacked on to it.

The Republican Party needs to rebuild itself with an agenda that includes of all the above points.

If it can get everyone on the same page, rebrand itself with fresh faces and trustworthy policy directions and a unified message in 2010 then they can at the very least make inroads to a strong eventual comeback.

With the right people, policies and message we can demonstrate that by trying to be like European nations with unfunded liabilities and the bureaucratization of everything we may actually become like them and spend decades enduring 10 percent unemployment rates and trying to maintain our national identity. We must use our policies and messages to capitalize on the dissatisfaction that Democrats are creating and demonstrate that raising taxes and spending other people’s money is not the best way for our country to go.

Now is the time for us to offer up a second revolution that is made up with ideas that puts an end to bureaucratic governmental licentiousness and unleash entrepreneurship all while offering leadership with a view towards freedom, pragmatism and common sense, all of which the left has abandoned.

But as is the case with any good strategy, its success lies in its implementation and the methods and tactics needed to see it through. In the next part of this series we will address those plans and reveal the logistics needed to grow the seeds of a political revolution to restore freedom to the freest people the world has ever known.

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Click the image below to read Part I of this plan

Click the image above to read the first part of For Republicans Only 

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For Republicans Only: A plan for rebuilding and reinvigorating a down and out party.

Bookmark and Share     It may seem a shame or insincere to have to be political and develop political strategies to get anything done in American politics. But when you plunge into the sea of politics you better be willing to swim. This does not mean that repboatayou can’t be sincere about the issues and their effects on the American people but it does mean that if your gonna swim with the sharks you’d be wise to put on your flippers instead of your running shoes. And that is what this article deals with. It is meant to discuss the political reality behind the Republican Party’s ability to get back into the game and the tools and the political strategies it must utilize to lead again.

As we look ahead you do not have to be a rocket scientist to see that the G.O.P. cannot afford a third consecutive election cycle where they lose another 20 or more seats in congress or any more governorships or state legislative chambers. To do so in 2010 will be lethal.

That is when the census takes place and redistricting begins. By losing more congressional seats we will be making it that much harder to reach a majority in 2012. And to lose any more sway in the states will mean that Democrats will have the opportunity to gerrymander Republicans into minority status for a decade or more.

So Republicans can’t wait for the presidential election of 2012 to help them increase their numbers. They must make their gains now and 2010.

In 2009 it looks like Republicans will do well and pick up Governors in New Jersey and Virginia. But for 2010, the G.O.P. needs to get on message and into gear now.

But how do we expect to make a significant run towards majority status when we will be needing it most in 2010?

Sadly, I do not see signs of a national Republican strategy and message shaping up. After supporting Ken Blackwell for

Mike Steele

Mike Steele

 RNC Chairman, I am not privy to the leaderships plans but from the outside I see no movement in the direction that we must take.

We could just sit back and allow the Democrats to get comfortable. That is how the G.O.P. lost control of things in the first place. After the first four years in control of both congress and the White House, complacency and the lack of a need to get the power that they had, allowed many to stop keeping their noses clean and to cease going that extra mile to make our case.

The same fate will eventually come of the current liberal ruling regime in Washington, D.C..

To a degree, Democrats understand this and that is why they are rushing , at a breakneck pace, to consolidate their power immediately by entrenching some of the most expansive and extensive socialized programs we have ever seen into government. They want to do so before the tide turns on them.

But to regain control of congress essentially by default will not make for a meaningful reason for Republicans to be in control or for an enduring leadership role that will last for any significant length of time.

So what are Republicans to do?

For that answer we should look back to a similar time. A time when Republicans were down and out. It was 1980 and much like now, we had a President who on the national stage spoke softly and carried a very small stick. He was a President who also saw government as the solution to all our problems but had policies which essentially drained every dime out of the American economy and made it so that the government and its people could not afford to do anything about anything.

To counter the Democrats and the “days of malaise” that they had us in, the G.O.P. revamped their image in the eyes of the people and became the innovative and anti-establishment, anti-government party. And they did so by presenting easily understood alternative solutions to those being bandied about by the left. They were also able to focus a spotlight on a common enemy that most Americans related to. This common enemy became something to rally against with Republicans.

Common enemies are a very powerful source of unity and support.

President George H.W. Bush spent the first four and a half years of his eight years in office riding a wave of support because terrorists proved themselves to be an undeniably severe threat to Americans and therefore a common enemy to rally against. This was not some political creation. It was a national reality and while terrorists still remain a collective concern, the lack of thousands of Americans falling victim to them again all at once, has made them a less powerful rallying cry these days but hopefully not any less of a concern.

arepleader10In the 80’s, the Reagan Revolution successfully united a majority of Americans by condensing all the problems that we were facing into a different enemy. Reagan successfully defined government as the enemy. And who was in total control of government? The Democrats.

This theme, this rallying cry, allowed Americans to see that government was not the solution, it was the problem. Over time, the approach increased Republican numbers at every level. From city councils, to state legislatures and governors mansions, slowly but surely, Republicans increased in numbers until a clear majority of state houses and state executive offices were dominated by Republican majorities.

But this message was not just meant for the purpose of having majority control. It was also meant to make a beneficial difference. It was meant to use that power to reduce the size and scope of the government enemy. To reduce government’s tax burden on the people. To eliminate the barriers to economic growth, job opportunities and entrepreneurial expansion. It was also used to rebuild our military capabilities and restore America’s role on the international stage. Defeating the communist enemy was another reason.

With Republican control came the change America needed and that is exactly what the G.O.P. must demonstrate to Americans again. We must convince them that we are currently headed down a road that our nation once ran away from. The road that was plotted for our nation under Jimmy Carter whose increased regulations, increased taxation and government interference created both a deficit of personal economic empowerment and of national morale.

That same Carter-like approach to our federal government is taking place today under President Obama. And at a time when we are again experiencing tough economic times, the liberal tax and spend approach is again making things tougher for all of us.

This case must be made to the people but it cannot be effectively made with an algebraic equation or Ross Perot bar graph. It must be made through a concise, everyday translation that everyone can relate to.

In 1980, during one presidential debate, Ronald Reagan discussed the historic and disastrous inflation rate that the Carter administration brought to bear on us. He spoke of a little girl who when shopping with her mother saw a doll that she fell in love with and desperately wanted. She pleaded with her mother to buy it for her but her mother told her that she had to earn it and with her allowance she must save for it. The former Governor and soon to be President continued to explain that the little girl saved her money until finally she had enough to buy it. But when she went back to the store, the price had increased and she did not have enough money after all. So, disappointed, she went back home hoping to save enough money to buy it the following week. When that next week came, she went back to the store with enough to cover the new purchase price only to discover that the price of that same doll went up again. Reagan described how this disappointing cycle repeated itself for a month and he further explained that this was the effect of inflation and the misery index which was created during the Carter years.

He stated that this was the result of the economic condition that we got ourselves into under the Carter administration and that as hard as we tried to keep our heads above water, the rushing tide of rising costs was a never ending cycle that kept on putting everything out of our reach and like that little girl whose so desired doll was always out of reach because of inflation, so too was the American dream becoming out of reach for all individual Americans.

Reagan helped people to relate to our troubles by encapsulating all of our nation’s problems down to the face of an innocent little girl. And in doing so he made Americans believe that he understood them and their problems.

It allowed him to capture the hearts, minds and votes of the American people.

This is the approach that we again need. Republicans must reconnect and demonstrate that they relate to those not in the political class.

But who is to be the messenger and where are the innovative approaches to come from?

Eric Cantor

Eric Cantor

In looking for such a person we can easily see that the House of Representatives is hardly a place where such a face of national stature can be easily be created. The few promising figures in congress who have the innovative minds and anti-establishment mentality that we need must rise to a higher level of prominence before they have a realistic shot at being the right national messenger. Congressmen like Eric Cantor of Ohio, Mike Pence of Indiana and Paul Ryan of Wisconsin are perfect examples of the type of capable, competent leaders we need. But until they are in a position of greater power and prominence like that of a Governor or Senator, there is little chance for them to command the amount of attention that they need to effectively and properly deliver a nationally captivating message

Mike Pence

Mike Pence

For Cantor, Ryan and Pence, the G.O.P. would be wise to start making room for them as Senators or Governors in the coming years. But that still wont fill the void we have right now.

In looking at the United States Senate, prospects there are thin.

Of the forty Republicans remaining, few have the persona, gravitas and ability to capture the nation’s imagination and trust. McCain is over and was over even before he ran for President. The Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, lacks any significant attraction in speech or persona and ideas.

Judd Gregg

Judd Gregg

Among the most promising, somewhat conservative figures, whose personalities and abilities can fit the bill, are possibly Bob Corker of Tennessee but more likely Judd Gregg of New Hampshire and John Thune of South Dakota. Both of these men are consistently strong, sound voices that could emerge as potential standard bearers in 2012 and they could start carrying the banner now by coalescing the party together under the type of “get government out the way” policy alternatives that we could make a message out of.

Gregg though seems always prepared to hang up his hat and return to a quiet life of retirement in the hills and mountains of New Hampshire.

So that leaves Senator John Thune.

He is young, the youngest of them all and I have always appreciated him. In his first run for the Senate, he lost by almost 500 votes that were illegally obtained for incumbent Senator Tim Johnson through a Democrat scheme that involved cash for votes and falsified registrations from two South Dakota Indian registrations.

John Thune

John Thune

But two years later, Thune made history when he defeated the Senate’s Democrat leader Tom Daschle.

Since then, Thune has been a relatively strong conservative influence and he has command of the issues, an energetic and confident charisma and clean record.

After sifting through the ranks of federal office holders, the only other obvious place to find the leader we need is from within the ranks of state leadership.

The governors.

It is here where we also find the most innovative and beneficial ideas in government.

The majority of Republican governors are handling things far better than most Democrat governors like those in New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Pennsylvania,

Donald Carcierie

Donald Carcieri

 Ohio, Washington and others. But here too, the right captivating figure is hard to find out of the 22 existing Republican governors.

Mark Sanford was a promising option. His potential was not for any command of communication skills, which he lacked, but because of actual strong policy positions and administrative qualities. That was of course all before he ran off to Argentina and abandoned his state and family for a romp with his “soul mate”.

Donald Carcieri happens to be the most unique of all governors.

He is the Republican governor of Rhode Island, one of, if not the most, liberal states in the most liberal region of the nation, New England.

What makes him most unique there is the fact that he is actually a centrist with a propensity towards conservative positions. He is often in opposition to his Democrat dominated state legislature on such things as the obligations of state workers, separation of powers and illegal immigration. He has even vetoed more than 30 pieces of legislation that they have presented to him. Yet he has still been elected twice.

But we are talking Rhode Island here and Carcieri lacks any great innovative leadership qualities and national appeal.

Haley Barbour

Haley Barbour

I would hope to see Carcieri eventually take one of the two Democrat U.S. Senate seats, like Sheldon Whitehouse’s seat, but I hardly expect him to capture the national imagination.

Of those remaining, the brightest gubernatorial lights are those of Louisiana’s Boby Jindal, Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty, Mississippi’s Haley Barbour, and the best of all of them, Mitch Daniels of Indiana.

Daniels won reelection to a second term as governor by as much as 60% while at the same time, Indiana voters elected Barack Obama for President. In some cases he even got 20% of the African-American vote. That is an unusually high percentage for any Republican anywhere. He clearly has crossover appeal.

He can also be an inspiring speaker who conveys his message with conviction and in a way that makes people trusting of him and confident in him. As a conservative he has refrained from the wholesale selling out of the ideals that many in the G.O.P. have done over the past five or so years. Just one example can be demonstrated by the size of Indiana’s government.

While governments in most other states has increased in size, Mitch Daniels has shrunk both the size and cost of government. Currently the state has about 30,000 public employees. That is the smallest number of state employees since 1983.

Another area of distinction for him is in the area of government budgets.

When first coming into office Indiana had an $800 million deficit but Daniels turned it into a surplus of $1.3 billion. Much of this was helped by his reducing the growth rate of state spending from 5.9 percent to 2.8 percent.

The only problem is that Mitch Daniels has stated that he will not ever run for president. That puts a damper on national hopes for him but they have also been the same words uttered by a few people who are now former presidents

Bobby Jindal

Bobby Jindal

As for Jindal his record in Congress proves him to be an ideally strong conservative. On issues like abortion, immigration, national security, healthcare, energy, education and on just about every other issues he is right where the right wants a leader to be.

As Louisiana‘s Governor he has maintained his conservative credentials and even reigned in Louisiana‘s state budget problems.

On the downside, Jindal has only been in office since 2007 and during that time, his first, and to date, only appearance on the national stage was a response to President Obama’s State of the Union. In it, Governor Jindal put forward the right message but its delivery fell flat and received rapid fire shots aimed at claiming he was done.

Such is not the case but even Bobby Jindal has admitted that he is a little green and needs more seasoning.

That leaves Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty and Mississippi’s Haley Barbour open for discussion.

Tim Paelenty

Tim Paelenty

Both of these men have produced for their states and both of them are more qualified than President Obama was when he was elected President of the United States.

In Pawlenty we have a strong messenger and practitioner of what he himself has termed, Sam’s Club Republicanism, a combination of social conservatism with working family economic appeal.

He has governed well, put spending under control and geared state government more towards that which it should be dealing with such as responsible infrastructure planning, maintenance and construction.

If Pawlenty can raise money and attract some of the top tier consultants which Mitt Romney has already attracted to his camp. And if he can raise enough money to insure that his campaign for the presidential nomination is not under funded, thaen Pawlenty’s record, populist approach and appeal could be quite successful. But to get to that point, he should really start reaching for more national exposure now.

He should start interpreting his alternative policies to the Obama administration and allow himself to become the natural face of the G.O.P.. In him is the ability to not only shape the message that we as a party need to get out but he also has the ability to shape the policies that we can center that message around. If Tim Pawlenty were to take the lead now on issues like healthcare, taxes, the bailout, energy and job growth, many others will line up behind him as they begin to see that Pawlenty is the figure who can part the seas for the rest of them.

The same applies to Haley Barbour of Mississippi.

He has a folksy, “get’er done” way about himself and an appealing record of accomplishment for his state on budgetary control.

Before, during and after the ravaging of the Gulf Coast by Hurricane Katrina, Barbour effectively prepared his state for it and efficiently dealt with its aftermath. Louisiana was the only state to be hit as hard or harder by Hurricane Katrina and in Louisiana’s case it was prepared for and handled so horrifically that its Governor, Kathleen Blanco was practically forced out of office and ultimately rejected even for consideration to a second term in office.

Both Pawlenty and Barbour have the perfect opportunity to step up and become the leader and messenger that we need. Both of them have the unique ability to convincingly demonstrate to Americans that with the right policy direction, rather than being in our way, government can get out of our way and be an effective tool for insuring opportunity, independence and an enduring quality of life with economic freedom and growth.

Mitch Daniels has the ability to do so too and probably better than any of them………….if he wanted to.

Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush

Of course three, now former governor’s have this same ability and opportunity. Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney and dare I say it, Jeb Bush of Florida.

Jeb has put off any attempts for the White House for now. After two Bush’s in the Oval Office over the course of sixteen years, the obvious notion that the nation is Bushed out is a pretty safe bet.

As the most conservative member of the Bush family to have served in office, Jeb has been a truly effective leader and one that Floridians would have never let go if they had the chance to reelect.

Palin has promise but after resigning from office early she also now has problems. None of which can’t be overcome. Her chances to be the national face and voice of the party is fifty-fifty, much like her standing among Americans. They either love her or hate her.

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin

Now out of office, Palin must walk a very careful line that seeks to diffuse those that hate her and broaden the numbers of those who love her. She will also have to make sure that she is taken seriously at all times. There will be no room for her to flub on any issue and while using her appealing folksy ways, she must convey a command of the issues and demonstrate a breadth of knowledge and competence that can in no way be denied by anyone who hears her. If she can deliver her small government, Washington outsider, equal opportunity, freedom based policy messages, she could out shop Tim Pawlenty when it comes to being a Sam’s Club Republican.

The largest elephant in the room though is Mitt Romney.

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney

He is definitely running for President and he is by all measures the current frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012.

In addition to being a successful businessman in his own right, Romney is also a managerial genius. He took the once derailed, scandal ridden, over budget and chaotic build up of the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics and turned it into a smooth running, ethical and profitable display of organizational perfection.

Beyond that credit is Romney’s term as Governor in a liberal state that is called home by such liberal giants as Michael Dukakis, John Kerry, Barney Frank and Ted Kennedy. The liberal bastion of Massachusetts is no place for a conservative Republican to sprout out from but Romney played politics and outmaneuvered his Democrat opponent.

However; in doing so Mitt created a few problems.

A now long past conversion from pro-abortion rights to pro-life has left many right-to-lifers wondering if he is sincere on the issue. Why right-to-lifers find it hard to believe that someone would agree with them after witnessing a personal family struggle with the issue, itself is hard to understand. But so be it.

On gay rights, previous statements made when Mitt ran against Ted Kennedy for the U.S. Senate and in his actions as Governor during Massachusetts first in the nation “Gay Marriage” fight have critics claiming that on that issue, Romney experienced another political conversion.

The two issues together give Romney naysayers the opportunity to call him a flip-flopper.

But that charge only adds height to Mitt’s biggest hurdle. Obamacare.

As Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was a central figure in the creation of a state run healthcare program that made the purchase of health insurance by state residents mandatory. The concept was based on the principle that if everyone was covered, healthcare costs would be less expensive. The problem is that such a law of supply and demand doesn’t reconcile when a government bureaucracy is over seeing it.

It would be easy to suggest that Romney did the best he could with a liberal state and an overwhelmingly liberal dominated state legislature and that is true to an extent. However Mitt’s fingerprints are allover this one and to make matters worse he was the first governor to implement a plan of this type anywhere. The episode does make the case for the federal government to avoid the creation of a socialized healthcare program. It also makes a case for allowing experimentation within each individual state until an efficient model is found and emulated by all the states. But when it comes to Massachusetts, this episode proves that socialized medicine is not the way to go and for Romney the problem now is that it was his plan which demonstrated why it is not the way to go.

There are other factors involved though.

The state legislature and Romney’s successor, Governor Deval Patrick did tinker with the original program. They tinkered with it a lot and many of the healthcare reforms made in the original plan have changed from what Romney had influenced. Nevertheless the issue is Romney’s to defend against and explain. It exposes his Achilles heal in any 2012.

Romney’s best defense against possible Republican opponents who were or are governors would probably be “I tried and it failed and I learn from mistakes, whereas my fellow governors up here never even tried to make healthcare more accessible and affordable.”

This assessments of Republican leadership prospects leaves us with the following conclusion.

As it looks now, the most likely and promising of likely individuals to choose from will be a field that consists of Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin, Tim Pawlenty, Haley Barbour and John Thune.

Others will run and some from the above mentioned group may not. But if the six that I bring up were to be the field of candidates for the Republican nomination, it would indeed be a hotly contested race that will also undoubtedly inject a great many substantial policy models and directions that will help to fuel the conservative movement.

But that isn’t till 2012.

What will become of 2010?

Short of any of the possibly convincing figures discussed being ballsy enough to attempt to become our national voice right now, as it currently stands, there is no one person who can do it while also having the ability to enjoin all of the party leadership including the senate and house in a national strategy.

Newt Gingrich

Newt Gingrich

Someone needs to be able to bring all levels of leadership together and get them all on the same page to push one strategy.

It must be a strategy similar to Newt Gingrich’s “Contract With America”.

Critics can malign the “Contract With America” all they want but it worked.

After forty years in the wilderness, Newt Gingrich, along with the help of a faltering Clinton administration, brought Republicans in to the majority in the house. And the new generation that came into power with that “Contract” actually adhered to it, at least for as long as Newt Gingrich was Speaker of the House.

As for who can be both the voice of the party and the unifying force for a national Republican strategy, politics being

Mitch Daniels

Mitch Daniels

 what it is will prohibit everyone from getting behind any potential Republican candidate for President. Each camp and their supporters will not permit any one of them to get the attention and credit for bringing us back.

So this role must be played by a neutral party. It must be someone who is not going to run for President in 2012 and who will not put the momentum of the popularity that will come with this role behind any potential nominee until they have won the nomination.

This person must also have the persona we need to effectively be a persuasive point man. They must be respected with a proven record and untarnished by any of the negative stereotypes that the left can easily pin on Republicans.

All of this points to one man. One man who, if he really means what he says, fits all of the qualities that are required for becoming the coalescing figure that wont be a threat to any single Republican’s presidential ambitions or be a threat to any senate or house leaders power over their Republican conference.

That person is Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels.

If he truly has no desire to run for President, he is the person that can help Republicans deliver a national message which counters the overspending, over controlling liberal government enemy.

With him as the face of the party that delivers a Reagan-like message dealing with the Republican alternatives to the Obama-Pelosi-Reid agenda, the party can rebuild and have a shot at winning more seats instead of losing more seats in 2010.

The stars would be aligned perfectly if Republican National Chairman Mike Steele could get representatives of the Republican Governors Association and of the house and senate together and onboard, hammer out what could be generally be called “The American Agenda” and let Mitch Daniels be the national point man for it.

This would allow for the type of cohesive leadership plan that, with accurate precision, can get Republicans back on message and working together while the message is being delivered loud and clear through what would be a voice from the heartland. A governor’s voice. One with crossover appeal who has been an effective leader with a proven record, cut state budgets, reduced the size and scope of government, practiced a true commitment to both family and conservative values and whom, if he seriously will not run for President himself, is no threat to any other potential candidate. Daniels is the best man for the job and one of the only people who could do that job as well and as convincingly as him.

With whom that messenger should be established, in Part II, we will deal with exactly what that message must be and the Republican organizational plan to deliver and implement it.

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A New Approach To The Healthcare Dilemma & A Warning From Ronald Reagan About Socialized Medicine

 
 
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On April 4th , of 1960, Time Magazine ran a story that began as follows:

u4PrezHealthCareBlog“Shaping up as one of 1960’s most incendiary political issues is the problem of providing adequate medical care for those who need it most and can afford it least: the 15 million U.S. citizens 65 and over. A variety of bills calling for federal medical subsidies to the aged is before both the Senate and House. By far the most popular and controversial of all has been introduced by Rhode Island’s Democratic Representative Aime Forand, 64. Last week the Forand bill was drawing more mail than any other bill of any kind before Congress.”

Fast forward almost 50 years, boost the numbers and change the names and the same opening paragraph can be written of the new universal healthcare legislation that was recently hammered out by the most liberal legislative leaders Congress has ever housed.

Under the orders of the President of the United States, Congress must hurry up and pass a universal healthcare package. Yet this is not an issue easily solved.

After winning reelection in 1938, President Franklin Roosevelt sent Congress a national health-care program of his own.

It failed.

On November 19th of 1945 President Harry Truman declared that he would protect Americans from the “economic fears” of illness and gave Congress a national healthcare bill of his own that increased federal aid for healthcare, health education and research for the medical profession; and it was to make health insurance and disability insurance compulsory.

Truman’s initiative had a mixed reception in the Democrat controlled Congress of the time and on the Republican side people like Senator Robert Taft of Ohio declared that Truman‘s proposal was “the most socialistic measure” that “this Congress has ever had before it”.

Truman’s national healthcare initiative failed.

Sixty four years later and here we are again but now what Truman called national healthcare is called universal healthcare and President Obama wants Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi to rush a meaningful plan together before Congress takes their traditional summer recess.

This debate has gone on for over seven decades but Obama, Pelosi and Reid are going to hammer out the elusive solution together in the first seven months of the new President’s administration.

Why is he rushing?

Could it be that President Obama wants to ram some half-assed legislation through immediately because he fears that the newness of his tenure in office which affords him the good will and popularity may not be there a year and a half from now when mid-term elections take place and the effects of his leadership set in?

Is such a partisan rush responsible or rational? Is it sensible?

I am not suggesting that important issues get sat upon while Americans see health costs rise and feel increasingly insecure about the future of their current healthcare coverage. What I am suggesting is a careful, thoughtful, comprehensive and different approach be taken. I am offering an approach different from those which other Democrats in President Obama’s position have taken and failed at.

Perhaps a bipartisan approach can be attempted. And maybe, just maybe President Obama could try and initiate a plan that does not involve a government takeover and government run solution that overrules the founding principles of our democracy. We have had enough of that from him already.

A start would be understanding that one solution for all is not appropriate and that the federal government could and should allow states the regulatory and legislative flexibility that would enable and inspire them into action.

The Democrat leadership in Congress, under the direction of President Obama, needs to understand that the many regions and populations in America are so varied that their differing conditions warrant different approaches to the different needs of our divergent society. Another words, a federalist approach to healthcare will not work. Democrats may seek to insure healthcare for all but a one for all national policy will not suit the needs of all.

That is just one reason why the differing states should have the flexibility to formulate different systems, systems that best suit the needs of each state’s population.

Yet while there should not be another failed national attempt to make one policy fit all, one direct line does exist which can allow, as Dr. Henry J. Aaron of the Brookings institute puts it, federalism to “spur bipartisan action on the uninsured“.

Bipartisanship is the key to any enduring solution to reduce the number of American citizens lacking healthcare. Bipartisanship is the one component that every Democrat proposed, national healthcare, initiative from Roosevelt in 1938 to Hillary Clinton in 1994 lacked. Without bipartisanship only one approach is looked at and the pool of ideas is limited to one school of thought.

That limited scope of thinking will inevitably leave many stones unturned and lead to many failures as such a single minded policy is imposed on all the states’ people.

Arranging allowances and guidelines for state experimentation is the first area where bipartisanship can allow for a federalist approach on healthcare.

With federal legislative guidelines and financial support, state experimentation would produce a myriad of various solutions and in time the best solutions for each state will evolve into better and stronger healthcare availability options fore all states.

Dr. Stuart Butler, a devoted and learned expert on the issue contends that “ Congress could enact a policy toolbox of federal initiatives that states could include and federal funding to the states would be linked to success in reaching the goals.”

Another issue that collectively, all the parties that make up Congress can work together on when it comes to national action on healthcare, is portability.

Millions of Americans cannot keep their coverage when they change jobs and often they can not continue with the same coverage they have throughout their lives as changes in their lives occur. Federal action that would allow for the portability of health insurance would solve this problem and help to stabilize insurance markets, reduce costs and ultimately reduce the fluctuating number of uninsured in America.

Comprehensive immigration reform measures that secure our borders are yet another bipartisan effort that could inspire a federalist approach that will significantly help to lower healthcare costs.

If Democrats can understand that we are a sovereign nation with borders that mean something and realize that Republicans are not an anti-immigration party, maybe cooler heads could prevail and a secure border can be achieved.

As an “Open Arms-Secure Borders” Republican, I know that most in the G.O.P. understand the national and moral value of immigration and that we welcome immigrants. The difference is that unlike liberals we do not condone and promote illegal immigration. We do not wish to promulgate an underground society and culture of illegal immigrants who hide from the light of day and the law. If the left could grasp these facts perhaps they could embark on a bipartisan effort to secure our borders.

With secure borders the flow of the millions of illegal immigrants who overtax our already overburdened emergency healthcare services will be sharply reduced. Currently millions of undocumented, untraceable illegal immigrants find themselves in need of emergency health care and in the end, the costs for their medical attention is tacked on to the bill of every medical procedure that every American citizen undergoes.

These are but a few options to the one size fits all, socialist approach to healthcare that Democrats in the past and present have tried and are trying to inflict upon society.

Each time Democrats have attempted to take the lead on the issue of healthcare, they have refused to work along bipartisan lines. Roosevelt presented his own partisan plan, and so did other Democrats like Aime Forand and Hillary Clinton. History shows that these same partisan, socialist approaches have always failed. Now President Obama has asked Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to follow the same path that all of histories other failed federal healthcare initiatives took.

Pelosi and Reid are not discussing healthcare with their Republican counterparts. They are simply crafting a proposal together that will suit the desires of their major backers such as the N.E.A., C.W.A., AFL-CIO and UAW.

Left to their own partisan tendencies these liberal leaders are allowing an alphabet soup of special interests influence a national policy for all Americans. Facts are not the soul determining factor in their partisan proposal and neither is the Constitution of the United States. The one sided healthcare bill being thrown about in Congress today totally ignores the founding principles of our once and hopefully still great nation.

The current conduct and intentions of the liberal controlled federal government simply proves that history repeats itself.

So much so that the dated words of Time Magazine from 1960 can be applied to the contemporary plans of liberals in 2009. So much so that even the urgent warning about socialized medicine that Ronald Reagan gave 20 years before he became President still applies to approach to healthcare that Democrats are taking today.

Below is a video that I prepared which contains that warning. Look at it and listen to it.

Allow yourself to grasp the truth of his words and allow yourself to see how, in so many cases, America has already ignored Ronald Reagan’s warning. So much so, that I dare suggest that the degrees to which our nation has already adopted socialism would have The Gipper leading a second American revolution…..a revolution of restoration to life that Reagan warned we might someday be telling future generations all about as we describe how America once was when men where free.

 

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Cutting The Defense Budget….And Our Throats

airbourne-laser-boeing-abl-poli247

Bookmark and Share    Hurray!   During this period of troubling economic times, with increasingly poor economic indicators and concerns over deficit spending, President Obama’s new administration has proposed their first budget cuts.

Out of all the  cuts that can be made, these proposed budget reduction measures are proposed in of all places, our defense budget

These proposed cuts came from one of the administrations few Republicans, the Secretary of Defense. The same Defense Secretary that was given the job by former President Bush.

I saw President Obama’s decision to keep Secretary Gates on, as a wise decision. I saw the perceived acceptance of continuity in the advice given in regards to our national defense as a prudent decision.

It is probably part of the reason why President Obama has not changed our approach to the war in Iraq. The advice and leadership of Secretary Gates has amounted to President Obama’s continuation of the Bush policy in Iraq and the time schedule set in motion by Secretary Gates under the direction of former President Bush. That is a bit ironic since President Obama campaigned on changing the Bush policy in Iraq and pulling out of there as soon as possible.

Yet the latest advice of Secretary Gates is a bit concerning.

He is the only cabinet official to have suggested budget cuts, at this point in time, but I am not sure that the defense of our nation is where I want the budget cut.

I am also not sure that I agree with the specific proposed reduction of national defense monies regarding the specific proposal he made.

Secretary Gates wants to cut back on air born laser anti missile development and technology or ABL.

Now, unless my short-term memory fails me, North Korea  just fired off a rocket that scared the bejeezus out of the international community. The damn thing flew over Japan, an ally of ours, and an enemy to the crazed regime running the show in North Korea.

The North Koreans said they were putting a satellite up into orbit. That explanation didn’t really satisfy the powers that be. First of all, U.S. intelligence sees no evidence of a new satellite up there. Secondly with the scientific capabilities that North Korea possess, the only working technology that they could possible place into orbit is a transistor radio. And it would be an AM one at that.

So all this suggests nothing but ominous intentions on their behalf. They could be using their new found ability to raise much needed money for their faltering economy by selling this rocket to another upstanding, humanitarian minded nation like maybe Iran. Such a move will not exactly be an advance for the cause of peace in the world. Of course North Korea could intend to use it for transportation. They could want to transport a missile that is armed with the nuclear capabilities that they claimed to have stopped trying to obtain.

Either way, the fact that they fired a missile that can strike too many vulnerable American allies as well as the United States itself, makes me wonder how wise it is to reduce government spending by eliminating a technology that could shoot down the next Taepodong-2 multistage rocket.

According to Gates, his proposed budget is “the product of a holistic assessment of capabilities, requirements, risks and needs for the purpose of shifting this department in a different strategic direction.”

As for the laser technology that could be used to shoot down a future Taepodong-2 rocket, Gates stated “the ABL program has significant affordability and technology problems, and the program’s proposed operational role is highly questionable.”

That assessment and the decision to go through with halting use and study of the technology is beyond disappointing. In my view it is distressing.

ABL-like technology was first popularized back in the 80’s when President Ronald Reagan initiated studies for the military implementation of what he called a Strategic Defensive Initiative.

Back then, the left tried to ridicule Reagan for this pursuit. They tried to trivialize it by calling it Star Wars and defining it is imaginary capabilities dreamed up by a doddering old fool.

But while doing that, Ronald Reagan used SDI to win the Cold War and he used it to eventually bring about the collapse of the “evil empire”.

The last leader of the former Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev knew that his country could not spare enough of its own money to study SDI and try to compensate for America’s use of such potential technology.  So in arms negotiations with Reagan, Gorbachev agreed to eliminate all of the Soviet empire’s nuclear arsenal if the United States promised to drop SDI.

Reagan said no.

He felt that that SDI was a new approach to the threat of nuclear weapons. It was a defensive tool and as such it posed no threat to anyone. The only offense it could be to our enemies would be the fact that, if it worked, it would render the missiles aimed at us, ineffective.  Since it was not a threat to anyone, Reagan refused to negotiate it away.

The move proved to make it impossible for the Soviet Union to continue its arms race and it ultimately led to the transformation of a new Russia.

Years later SDI technology has continued to prove itself to be quite valuable and its continued development increases our ability to shoot down potential threats to America or allies.

The recent activities of North Korea and their promise to retaliate if the world community places any sanctions against them, helps to demonstrate the need for our increased use of, and study of,  the type of technology that the Defense Secretary is proposing to abandon.

As President Obama returns homes from his tour of Europe and surprise visit to Iraq, I am more convinced than ever that we need to increase funding for capabilities such as ABL.  After President Obama went abroad and promised to stop flexing America’s muscle in favor of going along with what the rest of the world wants, I believe that the ability to shoot down missiles aimed at us will become increasingly crucial to our security.

I believe that President Obama’s policies will do little to discourage our enemies from becoming bullies in their own right. His policies will do little to convince places like North Korea to stop their pursuit of nuclear capabilities or the need to produce rocket systems that can reach America.

His policies will help to increase the need for us to shoot such rockets down. Yet the means to do so is now being scrapped.

So I am glad to finally see our government attempt to cut the budget and to rid itself of a program but this is not the government program to cut.

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