1. Ken Cuccinelli could have won – It is a shame that Ken Cuccinelli lost the Virginia governor’s race. If he had the support of the Establishment Republican Party, he would have won.
2. The Tea Party is the life of the Republican Party – All of the energy within the Republican Party is from the Tea Party.
3. Establishment Republican Party lost the race – The Establishment Republican Party is scared to be conservative. The ran away from Cuccinelli because he was viewed as too pro-life and too conservative. If the Establishment Republican Party loses its conservatism, the GOP will die.
4. Reince Priebus must go – Reince Priebus did nothing to help Ken Cuccinelli win this race. After the 2012 election debacle, we should have fired Reince.
5. Virginia is still a purple state – Many in the GOP braintrust thought Virginia moved to a solid blue state after the 2012 election. WRONG! WE CAN STILL WIN VIRGINIA!
Here is a poem from by Philip Freneau about the Battle of Eutaw Springs.
To the Memory of Brave Americans
Under General Greene, in South Carolina, who fell in the action of September 8, 1781
At Eutaw Springs the valiant died;
Their limbs with dust are covered o’er —
Weep on, ye springs, your tearful tide;
How many heroes are no more!
If in this wreck or ruin, they
Can yet be thought to claim a tear,
O smite your gentle breast, and say
The friends of freedom slumber here!
Thou, who shalt trace this bloody plain,
If goodness rules thy generous breast,
Sigh for the wasted rural reign;
Sign for the shepherds, sunk to rest!
Stranger, their humble graves adorn;
You too may fall, and ask a tear;
‘Tis not the beauty of the morn
That proves the evening shall be clear.
They saw their injured country’s woe;
The flaming town, the wasted field;
Then rushed to meet the insulting foe;
They took the spear — but left the shield.
Led by thy conquering genius, Greene,
The Britons they compelled to fly;
None distant viewed the fatal plain,
None grieved, in such a cause to die —
But, like the Parthian, famed of old,
Who, flying, still their arrows threw,
These routed Britons, full as bold,
Retreated, and retreating slew.
Now rest in peace, our patriot band,
Though far from nature’s limits thrown,
We trust they find a happier land,
A brighter sunshine of their own.
This is why some Americans believe we must fight for smaller government NOW. Since 1980, government debt has increased increased from than 1700%. And, in the last 12 years government debt has tripled.
If you want to understand why Tea Partiers are fighting so hard, it because we believe that America is at a tipping point. If we don’t stop the spending, the U.S. will go bankrupt.
Too many Americans don’t appreciate the pain that will be felt by our fellow citizens if America goes bankrupt. If we can’t continue to borrow funds,
- Senior citizens will not have access to Medicare funds at today’s levels
- Poor people will lose Medicaid funds at today’s levels
- The most destitute of us will no longer be able to receive welfare payments at today’s levels
These consequences will be real. Millions of Americans will needlessly suffer.
That is why reducing our debt needs to become a bipartisan issue. That is why Tea Partiers are fighting so strenuously.
Here is a list of conservative newspapers from around the country. If you know of a conservative newspaper that is not on the list, please tell me about it in the comments below! I would love to add it to this list.
Democrat-Gazette (unfortunately the site has a pay wall)
District of Columbia
Last week I wrote an article about how there needs to be a new agreement between all americans regarding welfare – From Great Society To Great Safety Net. The purpose of this new agreement is to rebuild trust in our society over welfare. I believe that providing a temporary safety net for all people who come on hard times is a conservative principle. Too many families lose their homes, have trouble paying for necessities and all too often face marital trouble when faced with a spouse losing his or her job. But we need to trust our society to not take advantage of the safety net.
The video below highlights one area that needs to be cleaned up. Millions of americans are abusing the Disability Fund. I believe that there is only one group of people that deserve long term help and that is people who suffer from a disability that prevents them from getting a job. But if people who aren’t disabled apply for disability benefits, they are stealing from society.
In the video below, 60 Minutes interviews Senator Tom Coburn about the rampant fraud taking place with respect to Disability Payments.
It’s time that Americans reach agreement on the Welfare State. At times it pains me to say that the Welfare State is here to stay, but it is. There is no denying it: Americans want social security, Medicare, and Medicaid (I am unwilling to add health insurance to this list). And it is time for American Conservatives to develop a conservative welfare system. We need to move from the Great Society to the Great Safety Net.
I believe a majority of Americans have reached a consensus that we can afford to fund a safety net and we should provide one to people who have fallen on tough times. My grandparents and mother would not have been able to make it without Social Security and Medicare. But we need to agree on what benefits should be provided as part of the safety net, how much money should be given, and how long people should be able to stay on the safety net.
I believe conservatives have two main problems with the Welfare State: (1) when will Democrats agree that it is enough and (2) people can’t be allowed to live on welfare indefinitely. To address this first problem, we need to simplify the system so that we know how much welfare people receive and to come to an agreement on just how much of a safety net people should have. After all, the taxpayers are trying to better themselves and their families too, and if more and more of their money is being given to other people, they deserve to know how much is actually being given.
To address the second problem, we need to limit the amount of time people can receive welfare benefits. Unless a person suffers from a disability that prevents him from working, that person owes a duty to society to either work or not take the property of others.
We cannot create a system that encourages people not to work, so that principle needs to be part of this agreement. Work is important to humanity: people don’t function in society if they stop working. This isn’t good for them or for society. A man’s soul is nourished by his work.
The point of this great consensus is trust. Taxpayers need to be able to trust that the system is not allowing some a free ride while they work hard to better themselves and their families. And everyone should have trust in society that if we lose a job or face a catastrophe there is a Safety Net to help until we can get back on our feet. But we must get back on our feet. The Safety Net must be time bound.
We also have to understand what Thomas Jefferson meant when he said that we are endowed by our Create with the unalienable right of the pursuit of happiness. This is pursuit is personal: each person must be allowed to pursue his own journey. We have to acknowledge that some people don’t want to work or they are happy enough with their current station in life not to work harder. It is hard for many of us to understand why someone wouldn’t want to better themselves, and it is hard for us to understand how someone could choose to live “less well-off” than we do, but people do make this choice, and we have to allow them to pursue their own happiness, and they have no right for us to subsidize this choice.
People make very complicated choices in life. Some choose to go to college; some choose to grad school; and others unfortunately choose to drop out of school. We all make these choices for personal and economic reasons, but they are choices. Some choices are smart: other choices are mistakes. But we are responsible for these choices. The trust built into this Great Saftey Net must require personal responsibility for bad choice. The safety net will be there for a short time when someone makes a bad choice, but the person is required to get their life back on track.
This would be my starting point to end the constant fighting over this issue. I am sure we would still debate the benefits and time period of the safety net, but at least the debate could be civil if we had this foundation of trust.
Harry Reid won’t help children with cancer.
John Cochrane from The Grumpy Economist has written a must read article on the effects of raising the minimum wage. Cochrane goes through the benefits experienced by a McDonald’s worker and the costs experienced by a McDonald’s worker. This is something we all have to understand if we want to turn around this economy.
Here is the benefit for the average McDonald’s worker:
Let us not deny the benefit. For the few people who work at minimum wage, but have worked their way up the ladder enough that they will keep their hours; who are actually trying to support themselves and a few children on these meager wages, it will mean a modest rise in income. The rise may be more modest once you account for taxes and reductions in transfers. There weren’t any such people at my McDonalds, but NPR and the New York Times seem able to find them.
Here is the cost to workers or people looking for jobs at a place like McDonald’s:
The cost is just as easy to forecast. McDonalds cuts hours, and uses its most experienced and efficient workers more, and fewer people like my hapless server. And they don’t get the oh-so-needed on-the-job training. The biggest impact of minimum wages is not so much on existing workers, but on new workers entering the labor force. (See a nice new NBER working paper by Jonathan Meer and Jeremy West.)
The effects fall heaviest on low-skill teenagers, especially minorities.
Here is the cost to the consumer. I really think Cochrane’s point about the price increase for a consumer who only makes $10 an hour is important to remember. Just as the worker making minimum wage is struggling to make ends meet, there are a lot of consumers making $10-$15 an hour who are also struggling to make ends meet.
I read estimates that a big mac might go up from about $3.00 to about $3.50, and dismissed those price increases as a small burden to bear. Looking around my McDonalds, I found this argument less persuasive. Because, of course, the kind of people who work at McDonalds are also the same kind of people who eat at McDonalds. If you’re working at minimum wage in the middle of Oklahoma, you don’t go out to a nice Greenwich Village restaurant to sample organic free range locally grown non-GMO gluten-free artisanal nuts and berries. McDonalds is a treat. And a pretty nice one at that. It’s clean, healthy — yes, some offerings are full of sugar and fat, but not of e coli, and you can get the grilled chicken if you want — and reasonably tasty. Raising prices from $3.00 to $3.50 is not a small matter if you earn under $10 per hour and you’re feeding a few kids too.
While I would certainly like to see incomes rise in this country, we have to remember that raising the minimum wage will cause some people to lose a job or lose hours. We need to create more jobs, not enact legislation that will eliminate jobs. Another important point here is that the lowest skilled workers will be the first to lose their jobs.