Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Conservative Reclamation of the Republican Party

The conservative reverberations from around the country are increasingly being felt
by the Republican Party at the state level in many states. The picks of the party
bigwigs are being contested in primaries and at conventions by grassroots activists
(yes, this indeed includes the Tea Party people!). It seems that there are still some Republican Party big shots that have yet to learn the lessons of the party's
fall from favor and power in 2006 through 2008, and have forgotten --- if ever they
even learned --- the lessons of Ronald Reagan's presidency; that the party and the
country does best when the party adopts and adheres to the principles of limited

Take Indiana: former U.S. Sen. Dan Coats is the choice of that state's GOP heirarchy
for nomination to run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Democrat Evan Bayh.
Problem is, Coats lost the seat that he held quite some time ago, and in recent
years has been living in a Virginia suburb of Washington D.C. working as a lobbyist,
not a very respected profession in the eyes of the public these days. State Sen.
Marlin Stutzman, a farmer and a stalwart conservative who has gained the backing
of U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint's (R-SC) Senate Conservatives Fund (contact the SCF
on the web: to join and/or contribute to a conservative
candidate), is likely to win the Republican nomination because of his adherence
to conservative ideas of governance as well as his high visibility in Indianapolis,
making himself known throughout Indiana.

Republicans in neighboring Kentucky will choose between Secretary of State Trey
Grayson, the state GOP suits' pick, and Rand Paul, a conservative with a libertar-
ian streak like his father U.S. Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX). Paul, by the way, also has
the enthusiastic support of the Tea Party activists in Kentucky, and leads Grayson
by 15 points in the latest polls.

Colorado conservatives are getting behind Ken Buck, a district attorney who is also
getting support from the SCF, as their choice for the GOP candidate for the U.S.
Senate. Buck is squaring off against former Lt. Gov. Jane Norton, who is backed by
failed 2008 Republican presidential candidate and ideological wild card U.S. Sen.
John McCain. And Sen. McCain? He has a puny 5-point lead over his conservative
challenger for the GOP nomination, former U.S. Rep. J.D. Hayworth in the latest
polls. Your favorite Peasant is enjoying a great big belly laugh!

California is the scene of a vigorous Republican contest to select a candidate to
run against vulnerable incumbent Democrat U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer. State Legislator
and Army Reserve officer Chuck DeVore is the choice of the SCF and the Tea Party
activists, and although he is prfesently running third behind moderate Carly Fiorina
and liberal Tom Campbell, he could get the GOP laurels thanks to contributions from
conservatives across the country as well as from the SCF. Don't count Chuck out!

In your beloved Peasant's home state of Wisconsin, we Tea Party members are finding
a lot to like in businessman Ron Johnson, who is vying for the Republican nomination
to run for the seat held by Democrat Sen. Russ Feingold. With the state GOP in a
state of confusion over whom to turn to, since popular former Gov. Tommy Thompson
announced that he won't run, Ron Johnson could prove to be a very attractive and
viable choice! Johnson is a staunch conservative on not just fiscal, but all issues
and will prove to be a handful for Sen. Feingold and the Democrats in the election,
with Sen. Feingold's approval numbers falling below 40%.

Finally, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, a RINO (Republican in Name Only), has been
trying to masquerade as a conservative in his race with former Florida House Speaker
Marco Rubio for the state Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate. However, the
conservative rank-and-filers in the party aren't buying it; Rubio currently leads
Crist by 20 points in recent polls in the Sunshine State. NEW DEVELOPMENT: Gov.
Crist has this week decalred himself an independent candidate for the U.S. Senate
seat from Florida, as he knows that he doesn't stand a chance of defeating Rubio
for the GOP nod. And get this: Crist is courting the state's teachers' union and
some other traditionally Democrat constituency groups for support! Crist already
vetoed education reform legislation favored by his predecessor, Jeb Bush and former
U.S. Sen. Connie Mack III. Mack, until Crist's veto, was the campaign manager for
Gov. Crist's senate run, but has resigned in disgust. As a strong conservative,
Mack should have known better than to give Crist so much as the time of day, let
alone manage a campaign for him. Ex-Sen. Mack can always join up with Marco Rubio
and help a TRUE conservative gain a seat in the U.S. Senate to take the Democrats'
majority there down even further.

Note to all recalcitrant Republican Party bosses and their chosen candidates: We
The People want a Republican Party which will work to reestablish limited,
responsible government and will fight to protect us from those who favor the
opposite. With you or without you we WILL have both! You can either work with us
for the achievement of these goals, or you can oppose us at your political peril.
The choice is yours.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

On The Subject of Incivility

As I was settling into a comfortable chair in my local library to read yesterday's
edition of the "big city" newspaper in my metropolitan area, The Milwaukee Journal
Sentinel, a letter to the editor caught my eye. Someone wrote to the JS editor
decrying alleged acts of intimidation against people who disagree with Tea Party
activists regarding the domestic activities of our government.

The author, who described herself as a 63-year-old grandmother, alleged that she
had been threatened with vandalism to her car if she didn't remove an Obama sticker
from it. The threat was on a note which also contained foul language along with
accusations of being a "Communist" and was left on the author's windshield. She
went on to say that she read an article about the Tea Party Movement which
mentioned some supporters wearing T-shirts saying "Save a seal, club a liberal".
In her final paragraph, the author stated "Threats and intimidation are not
acceptable in our country. Totalitarian governments require uniformity of thought.
Freedom of speech applies to all of us, not just a certain segment of our population.
wake up and think before you speak or act, or we just might destroy what we hold so

Let us critically examine this woman's letter point-by-point, shall we? First,
your faithful Peasant condemns acts of violence against people and their property,
no ifs, ands, or buts. There are NO valid reasons for engaging in such thuggish,
bullying behavior. Hopefully the author promptly reported this incident to her
local police and gave them the threatening note as evidence. The Tea Party activists
neither engage in such low and cowardly activity, nor tolerate those who do. As a
matter of fact, the movement's activists weed out such miscreants from their ranks
as soon as they appear. This is one of the reasons why your loyal Peasant is proud
to be a Tea Party activist; quality control for the sake of keeping our movement
credible so as not to repel those law-abiding, responsible, respectable Americans
which we prize as the backbone of our movement! That being said, conservatives
and liberals who display anti-Obama and/or conservative/Republican candidate or
cause stickers on their cars find their vehicles quite often vandalized just for
their having these stickers on their cars. Sometimes they face far worse. Case in point: in Madison (the capital city of Wisconsin) during the sometimes heated
2008 presidential election season a man was both verbally harrassed and tailed
ALL THE WAY TO HIS HOME by a motorist of the left-wing persuasion for having the
temerity to sport a McCain sticker on his pickup truck. After pulling into his
driveway the latter pulled up, exited his car while continuing his verbal
barrage,then physically attackied him. By the way, the author of this letter
being discussed here gave her town along with her name; of course your responsible
Peasant won't reveal either but will say that the town is one that is close by
Madison, which is a citadel of liberal politics. "Mad City" is not a hospitable
place for conservatives nor anyone else who is not a solid lefty to the core!
And don't forget the threats and violence perpetrated upon conservative partici-
pants in the "town hall" meetings around the country last year, just for daring
to speak out against Obama's bailouts of banks and corporations, wild spending
eupemistically called "stimulus", and "Obamacare" --- the nationalization of our
health care!

Second, the T-shirts mentioned by the author are merely instances of political
humor, without any more seriousness to them than the T-shirts that say "Nuke the
whales!" which have been around for quite some years. No one is going to clobber a
liberal with a club any more than someone is going to blast a whale with an atom
bomb! Anyone who takes these humorous political messages seriously does not
understand absurdity as a component of humor!

Third, the author is correct to state that "totalitarian governments require
uniformity of thought". Have you noticed lately how the Obama administration,
the Democrat-controlled Congress, and former President (and Democrat) Bill
Clinton have been ratcheting up their hostile rhetoric against the Tea Party
activists, not to mention their pals in the laughingly-labeled "mainstram media"?
Just a couple of days ago I heard that one of the media mega-lefties accused
us Tea Party folk of sedition! Now, sedition is defined as being "incitement of
discontent or rebellion against a government" (The Random House Dictionary of
the English Language, Second Edition, Unabridged. We Tea Party activists are
doing neither; as we are not opposing the government itself but rather its runamok
growth, and merely want to effect positive, corrective change at the polls,
NOT through insurrection or like means. So what happened to Hillary Clinton's
declaration, "Dissent is patriotic!"? And where are the twentysomething lefties
who wore buttons and T-shirts urging us to "Question authority!" during the
George W. Bush years? Anyone who openly questions what Obama and the congressional
Democrats do is called "racist"; "hatemonger"; "domestic terrorist" and worse names
the likes of which would make a United States Marine blush! Apparently "dissent" and
"questioning authority" are things that are fine and dandy to engage in when the
Republicans are in charge, but are forbidden when the Democrats are running the
show. Now THERE'S your "uniformity of thought"!

Finally, fourth, the author is quite right that freedom of speech indeed applies to all of us. And it is incumbent upon all of us as citizens to engage in political
discourse to determine how our government should govern, doing so in a civil
manner. Therefore your humble Peasant offers this advice to the author of the
letter we have critiqued here today: you yourself should "wake up and think"
before being quick on the draw to condemn "a certain segment of the population"
for the misdeeds of a wild few. Every political movement in the history of our
country and that of the world which strove to do good regrettably has had a few
"loose cannons" in their numbers. What should be given moral weight to is not
whether a political movement has any such fools in its ranks, but what those in
the movement do to control them or, if control isn't possible, to expel and
exclude them. The Tea party Movement is most vigorous in policing its members;
it is our enemies which resort to confrontational and intimidating behavior
to advance their cause. They are the ones who "just might destroy what we hold
so dear" if they are not checked by an informed and vigilant citizenry. That is
what we in the Tea Party Movement are campaigning for. So if you want more
civility in future exchanges between your side and that of the Tea Party Movement,
then, Madam, police your side's ranks. As Mahatma Ghandi told the world, we must
be the change that we wish to see.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Clearing Up a Misunderstanding

IMPORTANT DEVELOPMENT: As you, my fabulous readers may recall, on March 18
I posted on this blog a stinging rebuke of Dudley Sharp, the capital punishment advocate
who had responded to my two articles on Sister Helen Prejean's visit to Milwaukee, her
work for abolition of capital punishment, and my own opposition to this form of punish-
ment. I posted my smackdown after e-mailing an invitation to Dudley Sharp to discuss
our differences on the death penalty, Dudley in advocation and your tenacious Peasant
in opposition, on February 8 and not hearing back.

My article of reproach drew another response from Dudley. He posted this to my comment

"More than happy to have an open discussion. I don't recall ever getting a note from you.
I don't refuse open discussions.

My suggestion of fact checking was based upon facts, not snobbery.

Sincerely, Dudley Sharp"

After promptly e-mailing Dudley to inquire as to why he didn't receive my e-letter, he
informed your dilligent Peasant that he had, in fact, for some inexplicable reason, lost
many of his e-mails in his inbox. It sounded like a mysterious technical hiccup; this IS
a very serious problem that can, and does, befall people who are online. Dudley has
both my sympathy and understanding, and I ask you, my beloved readers, to give him
yours as well. This, then, is the reason that I haven't heard from Dudley Sharp re: my
invitation to dialogue in cyberspace. Happily, we have been able to sort things out in
our subsequent e-correspondence (and of course his internet service cooperating all
the while!). I asked Dudley if he'd like to have the e-letter in question sent again and
he gratefully accepted. Upon his safely receiveing it, Dudley thanked me and he told
me that he could understand why I thought he was trying to play a game at my (and
your) expense. I said that we shall "wipe the slate clean" and begin again, and I ask
you, my beloved readers, to join me in giving Dudley Sharp a full and fair opportunity
to present his counterargument to my reasons for abolishing capital punishment.
After all, Your faithful Peasant established this blog for the sake of open and honest
discussion --- so now we'll wait to see what Dudley Sharp has to offer for his part in
our discussion of this controversial and riveting issue. We shall erase the past and
give our guest a warm welcome.

Now, since your friendly neighborhood Peasant is no technical wizzard, I shall post the
quoted content of our discourse here in this blog from our e-correspondence (yes, I
know we'll be taking a big risk, given what happened re: Dudley's e-mail woes, but
if in the meantime I discover a way to host the whole conversation right here on this
blog then of course I shall do so with alacrity!). For now, please join your favorite
Peasant in welcoming Dudley Sharp anew, and we'll await his offerings.

Let the dialogue begin!


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Something Socialistic This Way Comes (Part III)


U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL) had this to say about "Obamacare":

"I don't think anyone fully comprehends what it means." And it's

no wonder --- Congressional Democrats threw together a bunch

of items from their wish lists, as well as some from those of their

key constituencies (i.e. Big Labor, social reform advocacy groups,

etc.) and provided a 2,000+ page bill designed to bring health care

as we know it under governmental auspices, with most of the Demo-

crats not even having bothered to read the legislation. House Speaker

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), when asked what key provisions were in it,

infamously answered "We have to pass the bill so you can find out

what's in it." Basically, House and Senate Democrats were told to just

vote for the thing and get it to President Obama ASAP, all the while

trying to squelch discussion and debate in order to ram the bill through

to Obama's desk. No need to get input from the Republicans, and

certainly no need to get the citizens' input; after all, the reform package

bringing radical change to the people's health care is going to greatly

affect their lives in many ways, on many levels, what do they and their

opinions matter?

But here is what we are now discovering about "Obamacare", this from

Mathew Staver, Founder & Chairman of Liberty Counsel, a conservative

legal advocacy firm active on Capitol Hill:

1) Senior care has been gutted.

Jim Martin, Chairman of the 60 Plus Association, states that the changes

in services for seniors --- especially those on Medicare --- are so far-reach-

ing that they would soon lead to considerable rationing of health care:

"You've got a report coming out from the New England Journal of Medi-

cine that nearly 45% of doctors may start refusing to take Medicare

patients. With fewer doctors and fewer funds, that means more people

in line, and that means if you have to have some kind of emergency

operation or test done, you're not going to get it. That's why seniors are

upset," Martin says. Such stringent rationing of health care is a common

occurrence in the national health care programs of countries which have

established them; that's why many of their citizens have been coming to

the U.S. for these procedures. But if "Obamacare" is left to stand, they

may as well stay home, as we Americans will get a heaping helping

of what these unfortunate folks have been getting from the nationalized

health care programs in their countries.

2) Questionable means of accounting.

The realities of implementing "Obamacare" over the years to come, with

its unstated costs, will make its quoted price tag of $1 trillion a fantasy.

Its financial structure is shockingly similar to a Ponzi Scheme, collect-

ing taxes for 10 years while only offering just 6 years of service. Gee,

that also sounds like Social Security, but we'll tackle that topic at a later

date. Now that the bill has passed and been signed into law, realistic cost

estimates now start at $2.4 trillion and go on a rocket ride because the

package is rife with loopholes that are subject to interpretation. U.S. Sen.

Jim DeMint (R-SC) has warned that "Obamacare" could bankrupt our

country. Also, Massachusetts State Treasurer Tim Cahill, who oversees

the funding for the only state health care system comparable to "Obama-

care", has publicly concurred. The Bay State's health care system, put in

place by then-Gov. Mitt Romney (a supposedly conservative Republican),

is currently running far into red ink territory.

3) We will pay higher prices for EVERYTHING.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the cost of the program to U.S.

corporations could reach $14 billion this year alone. John Deere, Verizon,

AT&T, 3M, Caterpillar, Prudential, and Valero Energy have all announced

the anticipated additional costs, making this cost estimate loom as a real

possibility. Guess who'll be paying for these rising costs in the form of

higher prices for even non-medicinal procedures and services?

4) Individual states will be left holding the bag.

Fourteen states' attorneys general to date have filed lawsuits against

"Obamacare" because it is unconstitutional and their states' budgets

are in peril, as by 2014 all fifty states will have to pay 50% of the admin-

istrative costs that will result from the expansion of Medicaid under the

plan, making for higher state income taxes and perhaps new taxes as well.

Besides, the Constitution makes NO provision for the federal government

to require the people to purchase any product or service for any reason!

Here's something else to lose sleep over: Not only does the Obama admi-

nistration along with the Democrats in Congress not want to hear any

objections from the people concerning this socialistic nightmare, but U.S.

Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) recently sent letters to the CEOs of compa-

nies reporting these steep costs, demanding that ALL DOCUMENTS

SUPPORTING THEIR FINDINGS (emphasis added by your faithful

Peasant) be turned over to Congress for review, and furthermore is

summoning them to Washington for congressional hearings! This is

censorship, suppression, and outright bullying!! The Democrats are so

anxious to keep the truth about their so-called health care reform from

getting out that they are trying to intimidate the business community

into scared silence about its true costs and its effects on our economy!!!

Their tactics are a study in totalitarianism and cannot, will not be toler-



Fortunately, in addition to the 14 states (so far) bringing suit against the

Obama Administration, Liberty Counsel has filed a lawsuit of its own to

repeal this radical and unlawful legislation on the very same day that

President Obama signed it into law. Mathew Staver announced the suit

and is confident of victory on the grounds that Congress lacks the author-

ity to force the American people to purchase health insurance or anything

else, and this because the U.S. Constitution grants no such authority.

If you, my loyal readers, have any comments or questions for Mathew

Staver and his non-profit litigation, education, and policy organization,

here's how to get in touch:

Mathew Staver, Chairman

Liberty Counsel

P.O. Box 540774

Orlando, FL 32854

Toll-free phone: (800) 671-1776

You are also welcome to make a contribution to Liberty Counsel to assist

them in their quest.

And remember to VOTE in the primaries in September and in the general

election in November! Ask ALL of the candidates for Congress if they

support the repeal of "Obamacare". Those that don't, tell them that you'll

vote for a candidate who will support and work for repeal. We must

elect pro-repeal majorities in BOTH houses of Congress, large enough to

draft and pass a repeal bill and to defeat an Obama veto. We have to fight

"Obamacare" on more than one front, so let's roll!

We The People WILL be heard, listened to, and served!!!!!


Note: The Peasant wishes to thank The Christian Science Monitor Online
for their easy-to-understand description of President Obama's health care
reform bill and detailed explanations of its main components. Thanks also
to Mathew Staver and his legal advocacy organization Liberty Counsel for
their list of things to look out for in the legislation. The information from
both of these sources have been most helpful in the research for and the
preparation of this article.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Something Socialistic This Way Comes (Part II)


The newly passed health care legislation states that employees with 50
or fewer employees would be exempt from coverage provisions, while
employers with 50 or more employees would be greatly encouraged
(with the stick, not the carrot!) to provide health insurance for their
workers as they would face the strong possibility of having to pay large
fees to the federal government if they don't offer any coverage. How so?
An employer of this size that does not offer health insurance would have
to give Uncle Sam a fee of $2,000 for each full-time employee in the
company if at least ONE full-time employee receives a subsidy from
our generous Uncle to purchase health insurance on his own. Even if
health insurance IS offered, said employer may be made to assist any
lower-income employees who want to buy coverage on their own, if
they find the cost of the plan offered by the company too expensive.
A "free choice" voucher whose face value would equal the amount of
what said employer would have paid to provide coverage in its offered
plan would then be provided to these cash-strapped employees. Also,
an employer with 200+ employees that does not offer health insurance
would have to automatically enroll them all in the plan.

All of these stipulations would take effect on Jan. 1, 2014. Again, the
stick is implemented here, rather than the carrot. And the cost of the
goods and services sold by these companies would have to rise in order
to pay for these mandates in "Obamacare". These costs would come in
addition to the higher taxes we'll be paying to implement and maintain
the national health care program.


Families will be affected differently, depending on their different circum-
stances, i.e. incomes, job situations, and states of residence. Those
families in the upper reaches of the income scale will certainly be sub-
jected to higher taxes. For families in the lower section, they'll receive
health care in a few years as they receive subsidies to buy it. For middle-
income families, the health care legislation will affect them according to
the aforementioned criteria.

Children with pre-existing health conditions, as mandated by the health
care legislation, could not be excluded from coverage by insurers. This
provision, with the bill having been signed into law by President Obama,
is already in force. Adults with pre-existing conditions will be kept from
exclusion starting in 2014. Meanwhile, this will make for higher insurance
premiums for everyone presently with health coverage in order to pay for
the treatment and care of those with pre-existing conditions now being
brought into coverage by federal mandate. Children up to age 26(!) who
are still dependents will be able to remain on their parents' family policy.
This replaces the ability of individual states to regulate the age at which
children are to be dropped from their parents' policies; at present, that age
is around 18 years. There are no estimates so far as to what this will cost.
Frightening food for thought, as premiums for people with health insur-
ance will rise, making them pay for coverage for the young dependents
in other families in addition to the coverage for their own family members.


Children's eligibility for CHIP, which assists lower-income families, must
be maintained according to the reform measure. Even if a state is hard-
pressed by budget shortfalls, it would not be able to drop any children
from the program until 2019. States that would find themselves in this
position might have to raise existing taxes or implement new taxes in
order to pay for the reform package. Also, under the bill's language,
"qualified health plans" will have to provide immunizations and other
preventative health services for children from infancy through adoles-
cence --- and no cost-sharing would be allowed. This proviso takes effect
in September of this year.


Some senior citizens may lose Medicare benefits, while others will gain
from an enlargement of Medicare's prescription drug plan. Under the
health care legislation, government payments to Medicare Advantage
(plans run by private insurers such as Humana which serve as an alter-
native to traditional Medicare) will be slashed by $132 billion over 10
years. These plans generally offer extra benefits that seniors in traditional
Medicare don't receive. These extra goodies will likely be dropped as
Medicare Advantage plans need to constrict their budgets due to the cuts
in funding from Washington, while Uncle Sam redirects that money
toward subsidizing people's mandated purchases of at least basic health
coverage in accordance with "Obamacare". While the bill does not contain
cuts to traditional Medicare benefits, Medicare payments for home health
care would be chopped by $40 billion between now and 2019, with certain
payments to hospitals would be pared by $22 billion over that same time

Furthermore, the bill would provide for seniors who, after paying $2,700
on medicine out of pocket in a year would have their coverage halted until
they have spent a total of $6,154 on medicine, after which their coverage
would resume. Each senior in this position would receive $250 to help,
with the federal government slowly increasing the percentage of drug
costs it pays within this stretch, culminating in paying 75% of all senior
drug costs between $2,700 and $6,154.

A Medicare payment advisory board, independent of the federal govern-
ment, would be established. Consisting of 15 members, it would submit
legislative proposals to reduce per capita Medicare spending if said spen-
ding grows too fast --- this being defined as exceeding the growth rate of
Consumer Price Index (CPI) measures for a 5-year period ending in 2013.
Should that occur, starting in 2014 this board will draft and submit pro-
posals to Congress and the president for consideration.

Some critics say that the board will be greatly instrumental in Medicare
cutbacks. Although legislative wording in the health care reform bill
prohibits the board from suggesting rationing care, changing benefits,
or raising taxes, many critics worry that any or all of these events will
occur elsewhere in the "reformed" health care system.

Next week we'll look at the overall effect "Obamacare" will have on not
only our health care and our health but on our economy, our freedoms,
and our lives.