Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Crunchy Crusade

I've combed the internet for pictures of the One Nation rally, the event billed as hundreds of organizations working together "to demand the changes we voted for."

This one seems the typical, though there are some great ones HERE and HERE and HERE, and don't miss this comparison with the 8/28 rally HERE and HERE.

Today on Twitter, the blogosphere and elsewhere, the story is going out that One Nation dwarfed the Beck rally. As if. Even C-SPAN had to "borrow" photos from the Beck rally to cover the One Nation rally, seen HERE.

But the numbers aren't the important thing. Look at the picture again. Look long and hard. Think about what the trashing of the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial and the sacred ground of the WWII Memorial says about those who infested Washington D.C. this weekend.

Of course they're proud socialists. But even that isn't the main thing. The main thing is whether one's actions match one's words.

Here you have a group of groups, in essence, that form the coalition that supported President Obama's election in 2008. Nothing inherently wrong with that. BUT the different constituencies that made for an electoral victory have a code and a worldview that they nearly all support vigorously, whether they come from pro-choice groups, pro-illegal-immigration groups, union groups, green groups, Communist groups or gay-marriage groups, or some other Coalition-of-the-Bilking partner that I blocked out.

The code says that when one group is involved in a fight, all the others must rally to their side with position papers, public statements and the like. The worldview says that the Evil Center-Right Common Sense Extreme Right Wing must be defeated at all costs. It also says that the end result of whatever you advocate doesn't matter, as long as you hold the right "values."

So if, say, you're a green, environmentalist tree-hugging nutjob, and you attend the rally in Washington D.C. Saturday and see all the trash left over, it's ok to walk right by it and head over to Chinatown for some stir-fried tofu. This is because it's not your PERSONAL responsibility to save the planet; instead it's your personal responsibility to petition the government to raise taxes to get someone else to take care of yet another pressing problem. After all, you were THERE, you WITNESSED the terrible state of the nation's capital and BY GOD, SOMEONE needs to do something about it.

It never occurs to these crunchies that they could take ten minutes and leave the place better than they found it. And we know this is not an isolated incident, as this Inaugural record shows. Same crunchies, same modus operandi. (UPDATED with video from the events HERE)

Now, not to toot our own horn, but I've been "First On, Last Off" the grounds at a few rallies over the past months, and never, not ONCE have I seen grounds left worse off than when we arrived. But that's not really the point; the point is that the Left doesn't just DO things inconsistent with what they say they believe; it's that they don't even acknowledge that the two things go together.

Contrast this with the conservative resurgence in the past two years. Have we had our share of nutjobs and slick operators? Oh, absolutely. But when did we ever embrace them? When did we ever take the position that supporting someone really awful was better than letting the folks on the other end of the spectrum attack them unchallenged? Look it up; when tea party or the conservative movement finds some ally acting a fool, you'll frequently see Twitter and Facebook unleash The Full Force of Doom on them from the right. Contrast that with the Left's dogged support of Barney Frank or Nancy Pelosi or Chris Dodd, or, (yeah, I'm gonna say it,) any random Kennedy. We know this; we purge those who don't walk the talk. The Left does not.

Nothing is new about these revelations, but consider this: Nowhere online today can you see evidence of remorse at the state in which the Crunchy Crusade left the capital. The disconnect is amazing, and striking in this way...

Those are the people who will be motivated to return to the voting booths this fall and in 2012 to solidify their worldview further into the government of These United States, the worldview that takes all firm foundation away and rejects even the most basic of truths; that what you do is exactly what you are.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Family First

I just spent a day travelling back and forth to the hometown to visit my dad in the hospital. I'm glad I got to see him and he may even be released this week.

But he's declining, and fast.

And I sit here, back at my own desk, thinking about the past two years and how little time I've had for family. Dad used to love talking politics with me; now he can barely get enough breath to talk at all.

I hope all of those people sitting in their easy chairs at home get up and do something. I'm tired, I'm tending towards despair, and I think the family will need me in the coming months more than the nation will.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

MIA Conservatives

What in the world is going on in Harris County?

Not much, apparently.

Today was the fifteenth e-mail, phone call or online message (counting all three ways of getting to me) in which someone asked me why they didn't see anything happening on the conservative side for the November election. This is getting so old. I don't blame the person for asking - he just wants to see conservative gains in our area, and doesn't know if he might have missed something somewhere. But there's plenty of blame to go around.


Lord knows I'm not a fan of how the local Republican party leadership has operated in the past, but I must say they're far ahead of where I thought they'd be. That said, that's still LIGHT YEARS BEHIND where they need to be.

Meet and greets every week for conservative candidates? That's great! Also, the leadership has been holding sessions letting the precinct chairs know what they should be doing, and giving them tools with which to do it. Rumor has it that if a chair doesn't actually commit to doing these vital party tasks, the party will recruit another person in the precinct to do the job. THAT is exactly the focus I'd expect to see from a party that is serious about winning.

But the reports coming in from tea party folks suggest not many of the precinct chairs are engaged at all in working the plans, working with candidates in their areas, getting out the vote, or registering new voters. That's disappointing. It doesn't do a bit of good to have great ideas passed around and no one out there executing them. You can be a successful conservative without joining in party politics, but if you ARE engaged in party politics, you really have an obligation to do SOMETHING.


There are some great candidates out there working hard for every vote in their districts. Fernando Herrera, for example, has focused on walking the district (or skating the district!) and meeting people at every opportunity. Fernando has been at it since early this year, and always has energy and excitement in his campaign. John Faulk has probably been to more events than anyone else, asking for help and support with his campaign to unseat Sheila Jackson Lee. Neither of these candidates are depending solely on radio or print or mass mail to get them elected.

Successful candidates have poured their time and energy into doing two main things; meeting voters and recruiting volunteers. Take a look at several campaigns in the area and ask whether that is true of each of them. Just off the cuff, I can look on the east side and see Roy Morales struggling with both of those simple tasks. No campaign office, no noticeable volunteer team (in a city with a candidate that can turn 80 people out for a state house race's block walk, this is a deathknell in a Congressional race), very few candidate signs and zero energy. If they don't turn that campaign around immediately, say hello to another two years of Gene Green.

Not all this is Roy's fault; he also has to contend with things like Eric Story (who Roy defeated in the primary) bashing him at every turn, as well as Dan Patrick, who I understand is going around referring to Roy as "Roy More-or less." And that is who so many conservatives listen to? That's who's holding up the standard for the party? Ultimately the question has to become, who's worse for the district: Gene Green or Roy Morales? We're not going to get everything we want right away. We didn't get in this mess in two years and we certainly can't get out of it in two years. Long game, small steps. Dan can hang on to his grand vision of 100% perfection in conservative candidates all the way to the minority.

Still, energy in a campaign fuels more energy. Asking people to support you in a campaign is a serious endeavor. A candidate who gives voters something to believe in, shows up where they are, listens to them and convinces them he cares about them can count on them to support him all the way. A candidate who doesn't connect with voters won't have energy, and if he can't create and promote and maintain that energy, he probably doesn't really want to win.


Oh, yes, I'm calling you closet conservatives out, too. I get so much e-mail it isn't funny, and a good bit of it centers around "Who do I vote for?" and "When are you going to have another rally?"

Really? So much for helping lead a fiscal and personal responsibility movement. It's a failure if all people want are another set of directions, or another entertainment opportunity. I didn't bleed, sweat and cry eighteen months of my life away to become an unpaid event planner and candidate cheerleader. I did everything I've done to try to get people to STOP OUTSOURCING THEIR DECISION-MAKING, and STOP WORSHIPPING POLITICAL FIGURES.

I've learned a lot these past months, but nothing more disappointing than the fact that most people really just don't care enough to do anything.

My hard-core, die-hard band of tea party allies and I will still be fighting for your freedoms; it's just going to take a lot longer if you sit in your easy chair and wait it out.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Long time..

Obviously, I've been away for too long.

My only excuse for not blogging here is that I've been managing e-mails, writing guest blogs, researching, updating the website at Houston Tea Party Society and generally getting into trouble.

I did some well-received opinion columns at Liberty Juice but didn't make it back here until today. I miss writing as me, rather than crafting communications for an organization. I love words, love putting them together, but sometimes I miss not having a filter.

So, what brings me back is the fact that it's 75 days and counting until the November elections - a project that's been, oh, only my life's work for eighteen months now - and I still don't think people really understand what's at stake. If they do, they certainly aren't acting like they do.

We seem to be awash in rallies in the run-up to the election. Well, I'm sorry, but as much fun as they are, and as much as they look good on television, they don't mean a thing unless people are willing to get out and vote. And that means, in an off-year election where turnout is always low, busting ass to identify unregistered conservatives and get them on the voter rolls, talking to neighbors, friends and coworkers about voting, going door-to-door and educating people. It means long hours in dripping-sweat weather walking up to doors that will likely be slammed in your face or go unanswered.

It's thankless. It's hard labor. It's certainly not glamorous. And it has to be done.

But instead, so many people are flocking to hear politicians speak, or hear a lecture on the Constitution, or attend a rally, or even, as Big Jolly remarks, go halfway across the country to attend a big party.

And you know why? Because none of that actually REQUIRES anything of the person.

Well, you can't win if you don't actually suit up and play the game. And too many people are leaving it to others to do the actual work. That doesn't put points on the scoreboard.

It's like this: rallies make a great news feature, but no one in politics will respect you until you bring one of two things to the table; money or votes. Tea party, in spite of all the media memes to the contrary, hasn't got money. Votes are all we can deliver. And if we aren't willing to do that, well then, we're going to fail. Simple as that.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Temporary Reign of Ignorance

I had an epiphany this morning.

We complain, moan and whine about how the Left depends upon the ignorance and easily-swayed nature of the electorate. They seem to outnumber the people who really do believe in the Constitution, in individual responsibility, and in electing leaders based on something more than image and sound bites and empty promises to fix everything.

But there are still a few realists in this country, people who see the world as it really is, not as they'd like it to appear on television. There are still people who subscribe to the notion that bailing out or taking over huge chunks of the American economy is not a path to prosperity. And there are still people who have enough of a healthy distrust of politicians to keep from making them into idols. And these people are filling the role of missionaries of liberty.

It may seem pretty dark in this country for liberty at the moment, in spite of the recent electoral wins in New Jersey, Virginia and Massachusetts. Momentum is slow to shift, and it takes time to undo dozens of years of reengineering our country in the socialist model. Even as the pendulum seems to be shifting, the statists push ever harder to keep from losing the gains accumulated over decades.

But the one thing the freedom-gobbling utopians rely on to carry their points is an uninformed electorate. Witness the quotes of those who supported the election of President Obama, and their reasoning. "If I take care of him, he's gonna take care of me." Really? Everything in me wants to find this woman and ask "How's that working out for you?"

People like that have done great, if unintentional, damage to our country. But there's a light at the end of the tunnel that I didn't see before.

While statists depend upon the aforementioned ignorance to get elected, the liberty movement has focused on education, working endlessly to reach people who just haven't paid attention before. We witnessed early proof of this working at the Town Halls last summer, as citizens quoted from memory passages from the Constitution while their representatives blathered on about the uninsured and the need to "do something."

That was a shift, and an important one, because what comes of it is this:

Knowledge gained can't be easily lost.

It really is that simple. The Left has banked on the strategy that vast numbers of people are willing to remain ignorant. The catch is that you can't reproduce ignorance in the same way that you can knowledge. You can create slogans and try to frame the debate or shut it down, but you can't take people who already know something and make them unlearn it. It's impossible without major invasive surgery. And for every one person we wake up, for every person we educate, they lose one potential ignorant foot soldier.

Knowledge is power. Information is a virus. Spread it around, because the more people catch it, the more we decimate their ranks. It may take a long time to educate a person, but it takes a lot longer to uneducate them.

Time is on our side.