Sunday, December 25, 2011

Outsourcing- "The taboo issue"

The 2012 Electoral map lends insight into the thought process of political strategists. A little better than ten months before the pivotal 2012 Presidential election there is little argument that a handful of states will determine the outcome. The question becomes, "are party leaders truly in sinc with the "pulse" of their constituents?

Few would argue that "jobs" will be the key issue. Yet, there is little being said by either party on an ultra sensitive topic with voters: Outsourcing.

In 2012 this could be a "make or break" question. Big business is hedging its bets on a Romney nomination. This looks probable and if it comes to fruition, they win. Romney and Obama share a very important common denominator: They are both confirmed globalists.

I recall last summer when asking a manager of Dallas based, Lifeway Books "who" was his presidential preference. He never actually answered the question. Instead, he warned me that Texas Governor, Rick Perry was "in league with the Bilderbergers."

Fascinated, I googled "Bilderbergers" and was astonished at what I uncovered! True, Perry had some minor dealings with them, essentially two meetings. However, their man was Mitt Romney, hands down. One source, however, said that this Europeon based secret society was apprehensive. They were disappointed in the progress Romney seemed to be making toward affirmatively explaining the merits of national healthcare. There were other concerns. Evidently they were feeling out Perry to see if he might be their new guy.

I went on to learn that this same group had backed both Bill and Hillary Clinton, George Bush the Elder, John Kerry, Michael Dukakis and Jimmy Carter. Other notable leaders included Christopher Warren, Madeline Albright, Newt Gingrich, Donald Rumsfeld and Colin Powell. This is obviously serious company.

Globalism is something that most people simply accept. Thomas Friedman's book, "The World is Flat" describes how the practice of leveling the world playing field has become the accepted norm. As University of Kentucky, ESL Professor, Dr. Kay Combs admitted upon reading "E" is for English, "if your proposed American English Unification Amendment were adopted, the entire world would be changed."

That would probably not be a good thing for any political leader touted as a globalist! Yet, who in the field besides Obama, Romney, Gingrich and perhaps Perry is not a globalist?

It is certainly not Ron Paul! He even accused Rick Perry of violating the Logan Act with a previous trip to Istanbul in 2004 to meet with this same organization. As an isolationist, Paul is on the opposite end of the spectrum. And, in fairness to Perry, there is no definite connection to the Bilderbergers, CFR(Council of Foreign Relations) or the Tri-Lateral Commission. It might be noted that the Clintons have ties to all three organizations.

Rick Santorum really wants to re-establish manufacturing in the United States. So much so that he is calling for a zero corporate income tax. These are noble intentions! Practical? Hard to say! Would these new plants be union, right to work or both? Where does the former Pennsylvania senator stand on outsourcing? I'm sure that he has mentioned it along the campaign trail. I just can't recall hearing it.

Even the dogmatic Michelle Bachmann has said nothing about identity theft, the fastest growing crime in America. It would seem that she would be the first one in line to say "nyet" to outsourcing jobs that required the most personal of information: the social security number.

Speaking of job creation! Does anyone truly know how many jobs would be created overnight with adoption of such a standard? Jobs within the fifty states?

The good news for Mitt Romney is that the rest of Republican field is either too damaged, too focused on the wrong issues or too utterly lost in the twilight zone to properly introduce him to the real Republicans. Who are these "real Republicans?" The ones who will actually cast their votes at the ballot boxes!

Governor Romney can be grateful to Reince Pribus, Karl Rove, Ann Colter and the rest of the all knowing Republican Establishment. They will keep this "dirty little tidbit" buried. The last thing that they want is to have their "flock" start nosing around someones dirty linen closet! It wouldn't take Sherlock Holmes! Simply go to your local bank. Did you notice the empty desks and office spaces? Where are the people?

Wall Street will tell you, "the stock prices are going up." In the meanwhile, the loser continues to be the average American. Not to mention the consumer who has seen service compromised in favor of more hefty profits for stockholders.

Nobody has considered what kind of benefit "Joe Six-Pack" would reap with the adoption of the "American English Unification Amendment." So let's take a closer look:

For starters, he would not be forced to watch his country go broke. Some say it already is broke! And, rather than swallow the Democrat solution of "a need for shared sacrifice," he could be satisfied to experience "English only." The stock market might be a little dinged! The special interests would howl! The diversity cultists would silently cut their throats! But the country would be solvent again! And, as a bonus, stronger, smarter and more secure!

Let's not forget about the jobs! With no outsoucing of jobs that utilited even a part of an Americans' social security number, look for at least 250,000 jobs to return to our shores. It may actually be much larger when you consider the contract jobs. I recently spoke to a nationwide mortgage lender who bragged that they outsourced all processing to India. Just imagine income documents, tax returns and the most personal of information floating around in cyberspace! It's little wonder identity theft is the fastest growing crime in America!

These are winning issues for a presidential wannabee. But they must first say ,"no, I am not a globalist." And frankly, any candidate who is a globalist should be dropped from consideration.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

"Tea Party Tomfoolery"

In an earlier blog, I had predicted that Barack Obama's "Jobs" plan was nothing more than a well laid trap for the Tea Party. He almost succeeded in getting members to bite. In fact, some actually did take the bait. Mitch McConnell, the often criticized Senate Minority leader may have saved the 2012 election for Republicans.

Of course, there are many Republicans who hold McConnell, House Speaker, John Boehner and a large number of house members in contempt. It was said that they "blinked" when the pressure was turned up. But what did they really concede?

The payroll tax holiday was favored by the majority of the country. Conventional wisdom has always mandated a simple axiom: Never raise taxes in a recession. We're still in one, no matter what some indicators might suggest!

The Keystone Pipeline should commence, as soon as practicable. 60% of America is with Republicans on this. Obama has shown signs of caving, even at the expense of losing support with Environmental Groups. The two month extension included steps in the right direction toward accomplishing this objective. Republicans had clearly positioned themselves on the side of James Hoffa.

The sticking point was extending unemployment benefits to 99 weeks. This went against the grain of most Republicans. Suddenly these recipients were positioned as "lazy." Opponents said they lacked proper motivation to look for jobs. Statistics later showed that the long term unemployed were applying for jobs at a rate higher than both the short term unemployed and those not receiving unemployment insurance.

Republicans attempted to craft "unemployment insurance reform." This translated to cutting the period to 59 weeks while requiring more rigorous qualifications such as drug testing. It sounded like a pretty reasonable compromise. The problem was, these "deficit hawks" never stopped to learn who these "lazy, unmotivated" recipients were. They concluded that they were "deadbeats" and left it at that.

In truth, these "deadbeats" are older workers, many 50 plus. A large number of them live in Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania. In some cases, they have been downsized. In others, they have been forced out because their employers showed a preference for younger workers. There are countless sagas of workers who had already put thirty years into the work force who were suddenly out of a job. As humiliating as that is, politicians are now calling them "lazy, unmotivated deadbeats."

Barack Obama's record is dismal. But he is a cagy politician. He knew that the conventional Tea Party member would seize the chance to beat up these two million or so, "lazy, unmotivated deadbeats." He also knows where they live. Most importantly, he knows that these "lazy, unmotivated deadbeats" will vote. In a close election they could make the difference in the 2012 presidency.

The Tea Party may have saved the Republican Party. They introduced long overdue discussion in Washington. However, in their zeal to right things, they must be wary at attempts by the other side to force them into a strategic mistake! They must never forget that they are hated and feared by the other side.

It is imperative in the coming weeks for all Republicans to understand that they do not hold all the cards. The Keystone pipeline will have an impact on the mood of the country. Energy exploration and development is the key to a recovery. Standing between that recovery is Barack Obama and a dogmatic agenda. A radical Environmentalist effort to destroy the energy sector can be exposed as the primary deterrant to a return to prosperity. Republicans can bring along large numbers of Democrats to their position if they are both flexible and sensitive to other needs.

Alienating parts of an otherwise friendly constituency for "nickels and dimes" is not the recipe for victory! Besides, long term unemployed workers are not all Democrats. Some are Republicans. Others are Independents. All are predisposed to look for a 2012 election alternative to Barack Obama. Addressing their short term needs while making steps to fix the long term problem will win their support.

This is no time for "short sighted tomfoolery." The Tea Party must mature politically. Real leadership comes from the ability to look at problems from a strategically wise, multidimensional standpoint.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Republicans- "The Danger Within/ The improbable Way Out"

2011 is rapidly coming to a close. The 2012 campaign season is upon us. Don't look now, but Ron Paul might do the unthinkable: Win the Iowa Caucus.

Many Republicans like the spunky Texas Libertarian. Most respect him, to to the point of taking his candidacy seriously. Nobody would have dreamed that he might be in a position to win the Iowa caucus. There is cause for concern in some Republican circles. If Paul pulls off an upset, it could spell trouble for the Romney alternatives.

Of course, there are Republicans who have always concluded that Mitt Romney would be the nominee. As Anne Colter puts it, "no one is afraid of Mitt Romney." He is the safe, establishment moderate who has little to overcome, other than a few changes of heart over the years.

Newt Gingrich and his grand debating ability yielded an improbable climb to the top. The question becomes, "can he stay there?" Odds are, he can't! Herman Cain is now talking about his desire to be Secretary of Defense. Rick Santorum is basking over his Iowa Tea party endorsement. Michelle Bachmann is continuing to "beat up the other candidates while making a marginal case for why she is preferable." Jon Huntsman is a convincing orator. Yet Republicans still wonder why he didn't elect to take on Barack Obama in the Democratic primary.

Rick Perry? His may the most difficult to understand journey of them all!
The Texas Governor had never been the best when it came to the art of debating. It showed! Perry lost a huge lead and has never regained it. Republicans have been quick to overlook his actual record in Texas. Consistency with the issues has mattered little.

Democrats, on the other hand, saw Perry as the conservative alternative to Romney. They knew that he had both money and organization. They feared that he would steamroll to the nomination without so much as a whimper. In private circles nervous Dems pondered their options. They knew that the "class warfare" general election strategy planned for Romney would not "cut a lot of ice" with the son of tenant farmers! They were gratified to see Republicans pound Perry on peripheral issues that would hold little relevance in the general election.

Fortunately for them and Mitt Romney, Republican conservatives became bogged down on these sidebar issues, as well as overall glibness. They suddenly decided that a strong debator was more important than an accomplished candidate with an actual track record. They apparently forgot that the Establishment had already settled on the former Massachusetts Governor. Romney, a good debator was spared some of the hardballs that could have been landed upon him, especially in the early going.

Nearly everyone concludes that there were far too many debates this year.
America will readily admit that the country may have opted for "style over substance" in the 2008 Presidential election. Evidently the lesson wasn't learned! Romney was perhaps an even great beneficiary than Gingrich. With no job, other than liquidating his multitude of luxury residences, he had four years to stand in front of a mirror, honing up and perfecting his debating skills. He obviously had a background. The question was, was it the right background for an increasingly conservative party?

For anyone who has been to Massachusetts and watched some of the campaigns, here are some things to remember. Social Issues are potentially toxic. A strong safety net is an imperative. Most of the population is pre-disposed to vote Democratic. A Republican wins only when the Democrat is so bad that the electorate votes against them as a protest.

Mitt Romney is a businessman. He knows big business, how it works and how to build and restructure companies. He is a smart, clean living intellectual who looks every the inch the Fortune 500 CEO. When he served as Massachusetts Governor, he ran the Bay State the way that he ran Bain Capital. There were ups and downs. Overall, it was an effective tenure.

Social issues are a liability in the Bay State. The best way to handle them is to downplay them, preferably ignore them. Romney learned from his friend William Weld, a Republican who served as Governor in the mid nineties. A pro-choice, gay friendly, environmentally empathetic, Chief Executive will not get bogged down in "clutter issues" that are sure to come from the opposition party. The wily Weld readily endorsed Democrat, Bill Clinton in 1996, because he knew that anything less would equate to a "clutter issue."

Go back to 1992. Remember Paul Tsongas, another Romney confident? He was a Democrat, running as a "pro business liberal." He had strong backing from Dewey-Rockefeller types in the East who were unhappy with the growing influence of a Christian oriented South that was becoming increasing influential. Once supporters of Bush the Elder, they saw the transplanted Texan as someone who had compromised his youthful orientation for the 1980 Vice Presidential nod and later the 1988 nomination.

True, GOP conservatives are well aware of the Romney Pedigree. They agree that "any Republican candidate would be preferable." But that is where it has ended. After Perry crashed and burned in the debates, conservatives first went to Herman Cain, then to Newt Gingrich. Bachmann and Santorum continued to doggedly push their credentials. The one thing feared by the Romney camp, "that these conservatives might consolidate their support" has thus far not materialized.

Ron Paul, in the meantime, continued on. His backers believe that he can win, not only the nomination, but the general election. Could this happen?

Odds are not with Paul. But never say never! He is seen as a Liberatarian by the Republican establishment. His positions on defense make most party members nervous. Romney supporters fear that he might still run as a third party candidate, ultimately throwing the election to Barack Obama the same way that Ross Perot put Bill Clinton in the White House. Paul is currently saying that this won't happen. Conservatives are putting their faith in son Rand to keep Dad from changing his mind. But is it a sure thing?

Nobody truly knows! Logically, it would seem less probable if the Republican nominee held positions slightly closer to those of Paul. But who might that be? Perry? While Perry's constitutional conservatism is the closest thing to Paul's, it's pretty evident that the two aren't close! And Perry has a totally different view on world affairs! Gingrich? That seems unlikely! Bachmann? We're stretching!

In short, if Paul isn't the nominee, Republicans will pray that he doesn't do anything more than quietly endorse their nominee. His supporters are looking for a champion who can advance their Libertarian cause. These Republicans mix with Dewey-Rockefeller types like oil and water. They hold more of a kindred spirit to disgruntled, anti-war Democrats who had become disgusted with slow movement in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama's braintrust recognized this and dispelled any possible defection by ending the Iraq war as scheduled. As much as Republicans may loathe the way that Iraq was handled, they should be thankful that it is not a potential issue for a third party "peace" candidate.

So much will come down to Iowa. If Paul wins, then follows up his win with a strong showing in New Hampshire, the race will be on. It is highly possible for Tea Party candidates to say, "they have had enough" of the Republican establishment. Romney has never reached out to them. Paul, to many, is the Tea Party. Many Paul supporters feel that another four years of Obama, as distasteful as it might be "would be better" than acquiescing to the GOP establishment.

This would be the ultimate disaster for the Republican party. That's why it's important for conservatives in the party to unite behind one candidate. Then chances will be better to thwart Romney's nomination on the first ballot.

Currently Newt looks to be that alternative. But can he be elected? He thinks that he can! He lacks money and organization. If Paul pulls an upset in Iowa and he fails to win South Carolina, it might be end game for the speaker.

What about the rest of the pack? This is where it gets interesting. Bachmann and Perry will likely fight it out for 4th place in the Iowa caucus. If Perry finishes fourth and Paul wins, the Texas Governor will put all his marbles on South Carolina. His hope is that Bachmann, Santorum and Cain would throw their support behind him, as an alternative to Romney. Improbable, but not totally impossible! The key would be finishing ahead of Bachmann in Iowa.

Surprisingly not in the discussion is Perry's historical ability to attract Hispanic voters. A major "bump" in the primary road that sent his candidacy spiralling(the tuition waiver) would become a key general election asset. Republicans must take at least 30% of the Hispanic vote to win the general election. 40%, the number posted by Perry in the Texas general election should be the objective. The remaining candidates, especially Romney will have problems with this key block of voters who now make up 16% of U.S. population.

In short, a stronger than expected Paul and a rejuvenated Perry(or Gingrich) could make the Tampa convention one for the ages. With new rules, it will be more difficult to win on the first ballot. This will work against Romney. In a state that is 15% Hispanic, his uncompromising position on immigration will come into focus. So will be his perceived inability to attract Latinos. Even though he might have the most delegates, a second(or third)ballot might find that alternative.

Could the Republicans ultimately turn "thumbs down" to the entire field? If no nominee surfaces by the third ballot, who knows. As improbable as it may appear, there are literally millions of registered Republicans who think that Marco Rubio would still be the best opponent to face Barack Obama in the November election.

Could anyone imagine a more difficult ticket for the Democrats to face than Marco Rubio for President and Condoleeza Rice for Vice President?

Rubio-Rice does have a ring to it!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Searching for Romney's Alternative

Republicans and Democrats are gradually settling into the inevitable: A Romney versus Obama general election. Shouldn't come as any surprise!

The Republican Establishment has wanted this outcome, especially those with close ties to Wall Street. Obama has proven that he is "their candidate." He hardly will admit as much. But look at his track record.

Romney? What Wall Streeter could ask for more? He has a history as a "guy who can fix things." Bain Capital was his proving ground. He is the best, at taking business' that are treading water and restructuring them.

Unemployment? It should take care of itself. In time! And, in Governor Romney's eyes, "Barack Obama is a nice guy who is over his head; clueless." That goes without saying.

Therefore, the traditional, "blue blood" Republicans should be congradulating themselves. Even though their man is favored by less than one-fourth of the GOP poll numbers, he seems to be on a winning, albeit methodical march toward the nomination. It would seem that it's just a matter of time. He has the organization, money and and the establishment stamp of approval to be accepting the nomination next summer in Tampa.

In Iowa, a committee has been formed to look for alternatives. This is the time to do it. Wait until January and it may be too late. But who could be selected as the alternative? First it was Perry, then Cain, now Gingrich and we are still six weeks out from the Iowa caucus'. So what gives?

The primary question on all Republican minds(and Democrats' minds for that matter) is "who would be the most difficult challenger for Obama to defeat?"

Experts contend that it would be Romney. There is concern by Democrats that he will attract Independents in northern suburbs. These might be sufficient to throw Pennsylvania and maybe even Michigan to the Republicans. It is even concluded that with Florida's economy still in the dumpster, there would be enough "Independent voters leaning RINO" to easily take the Sunshine State.

Sounds plausible. So why wouldn't the conservative base of the Republican Party be happy that there was such an option? Perhaps it has to do with Romney's true positions; on a number of issues ranging from abortion, to gay marriage to guns to the environment. He seems to have had different positions on all four issues somewhere along the way. This makes conservatives nervous.

So what conservative candidate could be proffered as an alternative to Mitt Romney? When we talk about "conservative" it is assumed that we are talking about someone who will be appealing to both social conservatives and the Tea Party.

Herman Cain electrified conservatives, looking like a "black version of Will Rogers." Everyone liked his plain spoken wit and his 9-9-9 tax plan. But, as time passed, he has been clipped by vague allegations that supporters and friends pray will die down. This coupled with the very real fact that he is a foreign affairs novice hasn't helped.

Bachmann has floundered around the entire race. Can she win? She thinks so! But odds are not in her favor. She is as polarizing as Newt Gingrich, the latest front runner. Unlike Bachmann, Gingrich has baggage. Lots of it! Bachmann will make certain everyone knows about it, too!

Initially it looked like Rick Perry fit the bill. But Perry stumbled in the debates. He could still resurrect himself. But he needs to do it quickly. Iowa will be key. He has money and is spending it. But he needs Iowa caucus participants to conclude that Gingrich can't win the general election. If they come to that conclusion, it's anyones' guess!

Rick Santorum, like Bachmann can't win. But he will stand beside her and assault every candidate who might be gaining momenum. This has worked well for Romney. He never solicited Tea Party support. Neither was he seriously intersted in building a rapport with them.It appears that he won't need to!

Which brings us to Ron Paul. Paul has been an ardent Tea Party supporter and activist. His base is dogmatically loyal. He is an excellent fundraiser. Can he win? Probably not! His ideas centered around defense are new and innovative. Many Americans like his straight forward talk about reducing the deficit nationwide.

Paul could have a deep impact. But how; assuming that he was not the nominee?

Republicans breathed a sigh of relief when he proclaimed that he would not run as a third party candidate. This would be a disaster for the GOP. Obama is secretly hoping that it may yet happen. Could there be another option for the Texas Congressman?

Nobody has said a word about it, but Ron Paul could prove to be a viable running mate for the Republicans Preidential hopeful. Recently everyone had voiced the name of Marco Rubio. Now, after numerous rebuffs, it is plainly evident that the Florida Senator isn't interested. So would Paul entertain such a notion?

Ron Paul would have a huge impact on the Presidential race. Especially, if he accepted the bottom slot on the GOP ticket. But would he run with any of the likely Republican candidates? Someone should ask him!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Obama's Cleverly Conceived Trap

When Barack Obama introduced his recent jobs proposal, there was a plan behind the plan. He knew that if successful, it might reverse the downward traction in what it increasingly seen as a failed presidency.

There was never any doubt that House Republicans would turn thumbs down to most of the proposal. The Democrats have both the AFL-CIO and the Teachers Unions in their pocket. Hence, "money for rehiring teachers and infrastructure refurbishment" wouldn't happen. By the same token, "extending the payroll tax extension, providing incentives to hire both veterans and the unemployed" were saleable.

Before the plan was introduced, Obama knew that he was looking at "small ball." Political reasoning suggested that in proposing items that were more beneficial to his supporters, he won either way. If they were rejected as predicted, he would have done his best but the Congress blocked his efforts. If the bill somehow passed, he would have pulled a rabbit out of the hat!

The one item of the bill that crossed party lines was extending benefits for the long term unemployed. Obama knew that many of these unemployed were Republicans. Others were Independents. He expected the Tea Party to reject the proposal on ideological grounds. He also correctly predicted that the hard right brain trusts of the GOP such Art Laffer would offer conclusive evidence against such a proposal. He figured that many of the Republican candidates would be forced to speak out against it.

Newt Gingrich comes to mind. He is a smart man, perhaps the greatest debator the party has seen. He is rising in the polls, gradually gaining Tea party support with each passing days. Many forget that he is Republican Establishment. A lot don't remember his willingly casting support, verbal and financial, for Dede Scozzafava, New York 23rd's turncoat Republican candidate.

What's important today is that Gingrich has joined the throng of Tea Party ideologues in denouncing this part of Obama's jobs proposal. Obama could not have predicted a more favorable development!

There are three states that may turn the election: Florida, Ohio and Michigan. The Democrats must win two of them. If they lose two of three, it will almost certainly be an electoral loss. All three states continue to suffer from high unemployment.

In Michigan, Senator Debbie Stabenow has authored the "99-week" extension plan. Ohio has been ravaged by outsourcing. While showing signs of improvement, it is still above the national average in percentage of unemployed. The economy in Florida continues to reel from the housing collaspe. Many of those hurt were professionals who simply can't move because their mortgages are under water.

Tough words by Gingrich and others exhilerate the Republican base. But they win no points with frustrated professionals who may decide the 2012 election. The Obama camp knows this. Their hopeful prediction is that the Tea Party will blow the election for Republicans. Establishment "Neo-Cons" such as Gingrich fuel the fire.

At this juncture, the Repubicans have few options. If the jobs bill dies, they win the battle but lose the war. Everyone agrees in principle that it's folly to extend unemployment benefits for long periods of time. However, like immigration reform, there may be call to exhibit some flexibility. If, for no other reason, to throw the ball back into Obama's court!

A compromise that extended the unemployment benefits, coupled with payroll tax cut extensions, and sidebars could be proffered. In exchange, the administration would agree to a one-year moratorium on any and all new regulations.

Talk about turning the tables!

For starters, the President would likely reject such a compromise. "Regulations are good," in his thinking. To suspend a key part of his agenda would be out-of-bounds. To those unemployed who were counting on those extensions, it would expose him. Advocates such as Senator Stabenow would be forced to choose between Obama's and her own agenda. It's likely that she would choose the latter.

Furthermore the excessive regulations that have been imposed by this administration would leap to the 2012 election forefront. Even staunch supporters of the administration such as Debbie Stabenow would question Obama's priorities.

It adds up to electoral wins in Michigan, Ohio and Florida and the White House for the Republicans. Unfortunately most Republicans are too stubborn to see anything save principle. I can hear Tea Party and non-Tea Party Republicans saying "it just goes against my grain to encourage people to not go out and find a job."

Those are the "famous last words" of someone who has been fortunate enough to have a job. Those who have haven't been as fortunate will tell you, "be glad you're where you are, and not where I am!" You hear accounts of months of fruitless job searches. So what is reality?

Perhaps the thinking is, they haven't tried hard enough. Let us assume that they are correct. It still comes back to the Democrats controlling both the Senate and White House. To change that, the Republicans need to win in 2012. To win the presidency, they need to win Florida and either Michigan or Ohio. This may not happen if they deny the long term unemployed a little more time to land on their feet. All three states will come down to Independents. Those denied unemployment extensions by Republicans will remember. On election day, they will vote.

Obama knows this. He also knows that many of the registered Republicans may do the same. People vote their pocket books. These numbers, albeit small are larger than average in Florida, Michigan and Ohio. In a close election, it might be enough to tip the scales. The end result: an Obama re-election, thanks to the Tea Party and "friends."

Thus, "Obama's trap" has been set. He is counting on the Tea Party to pressure John Boehner to resist any kind of addition to the deficit on ideological grounds. As a bonus, he has gotten some help from rising, aspiring "neo-cons," who smell Tea Party support. He never expected a large part of his jobs plan to get out of the chute. But this part of it helps Republicans as well as Independents. His hope is the GOP will reject it, alienating just enough voters to swing the election.

It's bait. Will they take it? Looks like they might...

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Tea Party, Disaffecteds and the "E" Amendment. "Can the Three Become One?"

The Tea Party may have saved the Republican Party. Today, GOP establishment looks upon it as a needed liability.

On the other side of the hill, Democrats label the Tea Party as "what's wrong in Washington." They point to the gridlock and conclude that it is the Tea Party that keeps well meaning pragmatists such as John Boehner from a compromise.

The media, depending on if you're watching Sean Hannity or Al Sharpton, is consistently, inconsistent. Some conservatives quietly wish for a little more political realism. Moderate Democrats actually agree with some Tea Party positions. Republicans don't have an exclusive on fiscal conservatism.

The problem that has surfaced throughout the short life of the Tea Party has been a question of identity. In essence, "which Tea Party?"

We must keep in mind that there is no centralized point of the Tea Party. There are the Tea Party Patriots. There is the Tea Party Express. There is Tea etc . There is now a Tea Party Radio Network. Yet, when attending local meetings, many are dismayed to learn that it's often no more than a county-to-county, even neighborhood-to-neighborhood clique!

Florida Senator Marco Rubio described the Tea Party as a "main street movement." This is a diplomatic way of saying "something without leadership, without clearly defined goals and a plan."

The quickest way to become alienated from one of the Tea Parties is to express support for the wrong Republican candidate. True, not all Tea Party members are Republicans. A large number are Libertarians. Many are Independents and a surprising number of them are Democrats. Most but not all of these Democrats are "D.I.N.O.S"(Democrats in name only). Some voters who claim to be Independents are relative newcomers to political affairs. Previously they had "let somebody else worry about those things." Now, it's a matter of getting involved. The Tea Party can take credit for mobilizing these Americans.

The question of identity comes from "if" only fiscal conservatism is on the radar. The Tea Party Patriots only address fiscal issues. This is a wise starting point. But simply downsizing the government and adopting a balanced budget amendment comes up short in defining a clear path. The Tea Party Express has been more active in drafting candidates for political runs. However, they have not done it without catching contempt from both the left and the Republican establishment. Some isolated remarks have suggested that the Tea Party Express may be about more than fiscal conservatism.

Imagine a large, loosely configured volunteer army. They have numbers. They have a cause. They have an objective, albeit a murky one. But they have no guns or ammunition. They have no battle plan. They haven't given the slightest thought to possible allies or reinforcements. They don't even know who is in charge!

They do know "who" the enemy is.

We have referenced a group of potential allies labeled, "the disaffecteds." They are unhappy with an America that has seemingly forgotten them. They are mostly independents. They have low incomes but work. Almost half of them are parents. They mistrust the federal government and generally dislike the current president. All they need is a chance; and a cause. And, above all, they need to be armed.

Sounds like a war! Actually it is! And it has been going on for quite some time. The only missing ingrediant is the ordnance. Enter the "E" Amendment!

The "E" Amendment would cut billions, if not trillions from federal, state and local budgets. By relieving state and local governments of paying for unfunded mandates so casually issued by Washington, they would free up money to pay for functions the states were meant to handle. Namely education, energy, and environmental protection.

Immigration Reform is considered by some to be a social issue. In reality, it is a fiscal issue. The proposal introduced in the "E" Amendment would fix the problem, and save billions in the process!

Identity theft is a fiscal issue. Why that it continues to lurk in the shadows is simple: "You can't have an adult discussion about identity theft without including outsourcing in the conversation."

Which brings us to the "ugly part of the topic, the true revealing of the dark side of America:" Affluent Democrats and Establishment Republicans look at Wall Street as the barometer for success in the country. In short, if the stock market is doing well, then everything is "peachy."

Are Tea Party members akin to the rabble seen camped outside of Wall Street? Heavens no! This would be like comparing a Billy Graham crusade to the anti-war riots at the Chicago Democratic convention in 1968.

Some have suggested that these protesters are not unlike groups seen on the streets of Petrograd(St. Petersburg) in 1916 Russia. More accurately, their anti-semitic intonations are reminiscent of Berlin in 1927. It is a chilling glimpse of what might be in store for America if a constructive alternative is not brought forth.

Whatever, we may think of these throngs of angry countrymen, we must stop and listen to what they are saying: "There has been a drastic wealth transfer in the United States since 1997."

There are those who simply leave it at "damn the godderdamerung." But it's more complicated than that. In a country of laws, we suddenly saw morals and ethics get tossed to wayside in favor of taking care of one's own. People got hurt. In most cases they were people who had played by the rules. The offenders not only went unpunished. They were allowed to keep everything that they had swindled.

The Tea Party can use this scenario to draw a distinction between themselves and those distructively in the streets chanting "anarchy and revolution." By openly acknowleging the problem and simultaneously offering a solution, the Tea Party transcends the steet agitators. That solution is the "E" Amendment.

Far left Democrats won't like it. The Establishment Republicans might scorn it. But those needed allies referred to earlier will embrace it. They will see it as a chance to insure that every American is significant and relevant. And this is where the Tea Party can unite it's behemoth masses. They now have a road map that will bring Americas' fiscal house in order.

It is actually very simple: Pass legislation that eliminates current and previously unfunded mandates. Adopt a fair, practical and comprehensive immigration plan and take exclusive control of American information processing. "Cutting waste, maximizing manpower and creating jobs." Are these not all worthwhile objectives?

What if the "bluebloods" in the Republican Party don't go for it? It's already assumed that the Nancy Pelosi cohorts won't buy it!

We return to our members of "forgotten America." Don't forget,two-thirds of them are independents. The Tea Party has just reclassified them: They are no longer "Disaffecteds." They are now, "Eagles for America."

Don't look now, but a powerful coalition has emerged. This formless, mass of people who suddenly woke up and realized that they were losing the country have an ally. They have been joined by people who felt that the country had left them. Don't forget, only 19% of Disaffecteds identify with the Tea Party. These are distinct segments of the population and they are unified in a common cause.

To bring about a "smarter, stronger, more secure America that is fiscally responsible, energy independent and cares about all of her citizens" will reasonate. The proclamation that "all Americans are significant and relevant," touches people where it counts. A call for unity has that kind of effect.

Adopting the "E" Amendment allows the Tea Party to shed an incorrect and unjustified label placed upon it by the far left: racist. The "E" Amendment promotes assimulation in the tradition of Americas melting pot. "Eagles for America" is the "E" Amendment manifested. It is a signal to all disaffected Americans that "you are invited and will be included in our cause, no matter what your background, race, ethnic or religious affiliation might be."

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The "E" plan for Immigration Reform: "A Bridge for the Moderates."

When I wrote "E" is for English the last thing on my mind was conceiving a comprehensive immigration plan. The book is about English literacy and assimulation. As it unfolded, however, it became clear that literacy, immigration reform and assimulation are all part of the same discussion.

Newt Gingrich is correct in saying that "America is a melting pot, not a salad bowl." What comes as a surprise to many is that the vast majority of these "would be, new Americans" don't want a "salad bowl."

The fast track plan for assimulation as outlined in "E" is for English would have far more support than opposition from immigration applicants. The opponents come from various special interests. They see the proposed "American English Unification Amendment"("E" Amendment)as the destroyer of an established standard.

Opposition to reform has it's roots left and right of center. From the left, quiet balkanization of America through the argument of "diversity" holds the aura of compassion. In reality, it encourages complacency and mediocrity.

From the right, the argument of "the law is the law and there will be no deviation from it," sounds good in a political speech. But such rigidity ultimately "shoots conservatatives in the proverbial foot."

In essence, the far left's stance is "unconditional amnesty." It can be described as "we must bring people from the shadows and provide a path for citizenship for those illegally in the country, regardless of circumstance." The goal: "An increasing reservoir of new Democrat voters and constituents."

The far right's stance of "unconditional deportation," can be summed up as, "if you didn't go through the proper channels, no matter what your story may be, you're a law breaker." The goal: "upholding a principle while preserving perceived American jobs and security."

At odds are two perceptions, one practical, the other ideological. The fallacy of both is the lack of room for compromise. Both sides would argue this point. But, in the end, it would be difficult to find a middle ground. Any "bridge" would almost certainly make neither side happy. Such is always the case with true compromise.

My proposed plan strikingly unveils a middle ground. It starts with illegal aliens currently in the country. The legislation would supercede presumed 14th amendment inclusion. However, anyone capable passing a 10th grade English profiency test, would be given a "path to citizenship."

Illegal aliens parented 300,000 children in America last year. Under the "E" Amendment, they would no longer be granted automatic citizenship. But they could gain it if they passed the proficiency exam. They would be required to complete the necessary requirements and do so without federal assistance. The "path" would include but not be limited to public service ranging from the armed forces to the Peace Corp, to a specified term of service in a non-profit organization such as the Boys Clubs or Salvation Army. They would not have access to entitlements such as Pell Grants, Food Stamps or Medicaid. Determinations such as work study and out-of-state tuition waivers would be left up to the states.

Some conservatives will say, "this sounds a lot like the "DREAM act." In many ways it does. What's different is the federal government is not providing financial assistance. Participants are essentially on probation. If they do not complete their service obligation, the promise of citizenship would be revoked.While liberals might embrace that part of the plan, it's probable that, unlike conservatives, they would take issue with a change in 14th amendment interpretation.

The left would argue that the constitution explicitly stated "persons" and not "citizens." Their point is valid. Yet, historians remind us that the intention was to grant citizenship to the freed slaves. The fact that Native Americans were not likewise granted automatic citizenship at this time lends credence to their argument.

In short, neither the far right or the far left will be happy with the "E" Amendments position. The far right will see the English profiency test as a "low bar" for amnesty. Their counterparts will consider it "selective" amnesty, showing clear preference for some applicants over others.

There will be those who say that it is discriminatory. They will point out accurately that the 50,000 Irishmen illegally in New York could all likely pass the exam. But it would be impossible for a six-month old baby living in East Los Angeles to do the same. They will predict that any future student would be able to stay by merely allowing their visa to expire and asking to take the proficiency exam. Good argument, right?

Actually, only those who completed a PHD would be given an automatic green card. Those students who overstayed their visa would be required to apply in same manner as everyone else. True, if their English is advanced, they would receive priority points. But only those in the country at the time of amendment inception would be offered the "path to citizenship with service" option. In short, the "door would be cracked, but only for a brief period," likely two years maximum.

With the discrimination question, we must remember America comes first. We want immigrants who can assimulate the fastest so that they may become part of the work force. True, the "E" Amendment favors English speakers. It likewise favors applicants from N.A.T.O. countries. The goal is to make the nation smarter, stronger and more secure. Better educated immigrants already fluent in the language from more trustworthy countries is the way to do it!

We must not be a "magnet" for illegal aliens. However, the definition of "magnet" translates to making it easy for people to illegally live here. The current system creates incentive to sneak across our borders to have babies. When such a practice is no longer the ticket for citizenship it will cease. When federal subsidies are no longer available to illegal aliens, the United States becomes a less attractive rendezvous. When a birth certificate is required for a drivers license and the test is only available in English, mere survival in the US comes in focus. The end result will be "self deportation."

The right might like some of these ideas. But some will have difficulty with the proficiency test concept. "Progressives" might appreciate the "path with service" initiative. But they would scorn the disdain for diversity.

Anyone having a relative in the country with questionable status would embrace the plan. It would indicate that the country was going to favor those who were already in the process of assimulation and/or were expected to be the easiest to assimulate.

The idea of weighing preference toward younger applicants might catch some flack from citizens attempting to immigrate their parents to America. But it would insure a younger population for the future. It would also add younger, better educated, workers to the nation's labor pool. This would equate to badly needed help in paying into the Social Security System. How much is undetermined.

Placing a preference on demand professions such as nursing and engineering reflects both "attention to an aging populations' retirement needs" and "future emphasis on expansion and innovation." Points given to applicants having a skill or trade signal that America has "her eye on industrial expansion."

The "E" amendment is the cement of a sound present and future immigration policy. In taking this path of "case-by-case" assessment, we find that elusive "bridge for the moderates."

This is why the plan was endorsed by the American Foundation for Immigration Control. As Director John Vinson phrased, The plan introduced in "E" is for English is "thought provoking, patriotic and simple common sense."

Could this plan be adopted by a 2012 Presidential candidate?

One thing is for certain: Immigration Reform is something that cannot wait! It has proven to be a political "hot potato" in times past. Still, a plan that answered all of the questions in a fair, constructive, proactive manner would be welcomed. If it managed to address even a small part of another concern, Social Security Reform, it could become a decisive element in the election.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The "Diversity Immigrant Visa Program:" Compromising American Exceptionalism

To truly understand the mismanagement of immigration control, we must put a magnifying glass on the current process.

Most Americans are unaware of the Immigration lottery. Even fewer understand how it works. In condensed fashion, here it is: The United States government admits 50,000 immigrants per year via a lottery. In essence, these fortunates put their names in the state department's hat and receive a green card when their names are drawn.

No attempt is made to judge qualification. It seems that the only real qualification is "diversity." These "new Americans" could be illiterate. They could be coming from terrorist countries. Doesn't matter. As long as they are "diverse," it's okay.

Let's put it into a different perspective. What if a corporation hired people without reading their resumes? How about a professional baseball team that selected it's players from the telephone book? Or, a university that chose it's students from drawing names from fishbowls at local high schools?

Most Americans would ask, "are we stupid?"

I think we are! It almost lends credence to the belief that some unseen power is attempting to destroy America at the roots by allowing anybody and everybody into our country. Diversity, which is rapidly becoming the politically correct term for "an excuse to encourage and facilitate a lower standard," is always the lone justification.

The "Diversity Immigrant Visa Program" is not open to residents of countries that already send thousands of immigrants each year through other categories of admission. Canadians, Mexicans, Brazilians and Poles, to name a few, aren't eligible. Non-excluded countries are issued visas on how many from that country have already been accepted. The fewer a country may send, the more diversity visas it receives.

What do these "diversity" applicants need to have on their resume? A high school diploma OR two years working at a job that requires two years of training to hold. That's it!

The question becomes, "how can we correct this ill conceived practice?"

The immigration proposal outlined in "E" is for English introduces a points system that insures that America gets the most qualified immigrants. It works like this:

+-If you are under 30, you will receive 1 point.
+-If you are under 30 and have a college degree, you will receive a bonus point.
+- A high school diploma earns one point.
+- An undergraduate degree earns two point.
+- An advanced degree earns an additional point.
+- A medical degree earns three additional points.
+- The ability to pass a 4th grade English proficiency test earns a half point.
+- The ability to pass a high school English proficiency test earns two points.
+- A nursing degree gains an additional half point as does an engineering degree.
+- A trade is worth an additional half point.
+- If your departing country has NATO membership, you will receive an additional point.
+ Any receiver of a PHD at an American college or university would automatically receive a green card.

What about family ties in the United States. Under the current system, parents and children are given a higher priority than siblings. This would change. Under the "E" plan, children would receive three points,siblings would receive two points and parents one point.

So, if 27-year-old,Joseph Molinski of Kracow, Poland, an engineer capable of passing a high school English proficiency test seeks to join his brother in Skokie, Illinois, his qualification points would tally in this manner:

+-1 point because he was under 30
+-1 point because he had a high school diploma
+-2 points because he had a undergraduate degree
+-1 bonus point because he was both under 30 and held an college degree
+- 1/2 point because his degree was in engineering
+- 2 points because he was capable of passing a high school English proficiency test
+- 2 points because he had a sibling already residing in the United States.
+- 1 point because Poland is a member of N.A.T.O.

The United States would determine how many visas would be issued. The sole determinant would be cumulative points. There would be no quota or limit placed on any country.

Joseph's point total would be 10.5. If he was in the top percentile of applicants, he would be allowed to immigrate. It would not matter how many or how few fellow applicants came from Poland. Our goal would be simple: We want "the best of the best." Diversity would be irrelevent.

The idea behind the plan is very simple. We want younger, better educated immigrants more capable of immediate assimulation. The "E" plan would insure it. It would also be a major step toward perserving Social Security. People are livng longer than when the plan was conceived. That's good. But, it translates to more people receiving the entitlement. Our population is aging. We need younger, better educated and more qualified people to enter our work force.

Predicably, opponents of the plan would describe it as "racist." Their contention would be, "if you give preference to English speakers, you will be favoring certain countries?" And what about giving weight to applicants departing from NATO countries? After all, most of those countries are in Europe!

78% of immigrants arriving on diversity visas last year were born in Africa or Asia. Only 19% entered from Europe. The top ten sending countries were(in order) Ethiopia, Egypt, Uzbekistan, Nigeria, Bangladesh, Kenya, Ghana, Ukraine, Morocco, and Nepal. Germany which has traditionally sent large numbers of immigrants to the U.S. ranked 16.

The greatest concern, even more than accepting less qualified applicants, is security. This past July a House Judiciary Committee approved a bill that would abolish the diversity lottery. Their reasoning was based on heightened security risks. There was also evidence of "pervasive fraud" in applications to the program including the use of fake birth certificates and passports to support multiple entries for a single person.

The immigration points system as outlined in "E" is for English has been referred to as the "most fair, practical and comprehensive" plan yet to be conceived. It simply guarantees a better educated, more qualified immigrant. Better yet, it arrests the aging of America. This may be the most fundamental point in saving Social Security.

The "E" plan defintely needs to be part of immigration reform discussion; politically correct or not.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Perry's Immigration positions: "How they must be interpreted."

Many conservatives are confused with Texas Governor, Rick Perry's immigration position. With the recent debate tone it's easy to understand why!

Texas waived out-of-state tuition for children of illegal aliens. As Mitt Romney correctly underscored, it amounted to about $22,000 per year in savings for these students. "Why would Governor Perry defend such an action?"

Some have suggested that Governor Perry may be "soft" on illegal immigration. If he were not, why would he oppose the building of fences along Texas' 1200 mile border?

Interestly enough the questions mostly came from three Republican candidates from "blue states:" Michelle Bachmann, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum. The questions seemed fair and pertinent. Yet, in hearing Governor Perry's response, I came away with the feeling that he was attempting to educate novices on both subjects.

Let's look at the tuition question first. These students were children of illegal aliens. They were not anchor babies. They had entered the country with their parents legally. Their parents came to the country on visas that were generally education or religious in nature. The visas expired. The children meanwhile had attended and graduated from Texas public schools. They had legally applied for citizenship. Should they have been afforded exemption from out-of-state tuition? All but four of the Texas Congressmen and Senators thought so! Were they wrong? They didn't think so. Neither did Governor Perry. Almost unanamously they concluded that it was "a Texas thing." On that subject, they were 100% correct. It is a decision that should be made on the state level. They made it.

Republicans from these "blue" states often don't connect with border issues. They simply have no experience. It is likely that Michelle Bachmann knows as much about this subject as Rick Perry knows about "ice fishing for Walleye at Lake of the Woods." Romney is as familiar with the naturalization process as Perry is fluent on the joys of "polo matches at Martha's Vineyard."

True it arouses the conservative base with anti-Hispanic resentment. But this is a clear ticket to losing the general election. Neither Bachmann or Romney have connected with Latinos. Republicans must win 40% of the Hispanic vote. It is doubtful that either Bachmann or Romney can capture 20% of this crucial vote. That's why I do not think that either can defeat Barack Obama in the general election. No matter how awful the economy may be next year!

Governor Perry held his ground. In doing so he demonstrated conviction. It gets down to two things: "do the individual states have the right to make this call?" And, "are we willing to look at immigration on a case-by-case basis?" True, most of the Republican base doesn't agree with him. But the position reflects practicality,compassion and wisdom. It could ultimately be a winning position in the general election.

What about the border fences? Doesn't his lack of enthusiasm for them prove that the Texas Governor is "soft" on illegal aliens?

Actually, he knows that they won't work! This comes from being Governor of a state that shares a 1200 mile border with Mexico. Perry is correct in that "boots on the ground," as in soldiers are needed to get the job done. Only experience in having grown-up, lived and governed such a state can true understanding of the problem be manifested. For Romney and Bachmann it might translate to good politics. Taking exception to Perry's position will always score short term points with the base. But what about the long term?

While staunch conservatives may be disappointed in Perry's position, it must be remembered that Barack Obama will not take issue with either the tuition waiver or the fence in the general election. He will position both Bachmann and Romney as anti-Hispanic. With Perry, this will be difficult it not impossible.

It is easy enough for Bachmann and Romney to question Perry's actions. But what would have they done if placed in Perry's chair? As the old Cherokee proverb went, "Don't pass judgment on another until you have walked in their moccasins for three days."

The fence conclusion is derived from experience and being there. The tuition question comes down to a decision that will always have supporters and opponents.

Bachmann is a "neo-con." In fairness, it may be impossible for a woman born in Iowa who grew up in Minnesota to truly understand the principle of states rights. She may talk about the 10th amendment. But facts are facts. Governor Perry was joined by practically all of the law makers in Texas. It is a "constitutional thing!" It never seemed to occur to Congresswoman Bachmann that this was Texas' business and Texas'call.

Governor Romney is easier to fathom. He "is a "trimmer." In other words, "he trims his sails to the political winds." Had the Republican base voiced praise for Perry's decision, he would have seconded the motion.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Obama's true message.

President Barack Obama cares as much for Americas' unemployed as Adoph Hitler cared about the presevation of Jewish lives.

For those who dispute this statement answer two questions: "Why has Obamacare not been repealed?" And, "why are we moving forward with endless job killing regulations?" These regulations range from meaningless banking regulations to subjective EPA mandates that are based on theories that draw less water every day!

Obviously if the president held concern about jobs, he would immediately put the brakes on some of the most obvious regulatory initiatives. Perhaps, as Mitt Romney phrased in the September 7th debate, "he's a nice guy but he hasn't a clue."

Mitt gets an "A" for diplomacy. But it's quiet way of saying that the President of the United States is stupid. But can he honestly be that tone deaf?

The case is further made by Newt Gingrich's reminder that 69% of Alaska is owned by the Federal government. Energy is abundant and the the majority of America wants ANWAR developed. The enormous gas find in lower Cook Inlet translates to high paying jobs for the state. We certainly could use the energy. So what's the problem?

I think Barack Obama may be a lot of things. But one thing he isn't is stupid. He knows exactly what he is doing. For insight, please visit,

When this chilling film is viewed, fair minded, hard working Americans find themselves becoming incensed. It is a well researched account of "dumbing down" the country and quietly advancing Socialism under the guise of "social justice" and "progressivism." This is not some conspiracy theory mind you! All of this is being done in the open. It's a must see.

It does not take an Econometrist to determine that the very regulations so proudly hailed by Obama are discourging job creation in America. As soon as we relax regulations, the jobs return to our shores. Why would Obama have a problem with this?

Obama mentioned the yearning to have that "made in America" stamp on more products. Yet, guess who occupied the seat next to Michelle Obama? Jeffrey Immelt of General Electric, the "undisputed outsource king." We must remember that Immelt has shipped endless jobs to China. He has literally moved American companies there! He has also done business with Iran. Strange bedfellows!

Obama's Thursday speech was purely political. It shrewdly sets a "trap." He is trying to bait Republicans into saying"no." In fact, odds are, he hopes that they will say "no" to everything. This will be a true test for the new elects. If they unilaterally reject every piece of Obama's jobs bill, they will look like calloused obstructionists, lacking in compassion and reason. If they accept all or most of it, they will look weak. Is there a "sweet spot?"

So much of Obama's slant was to his base. He passionately defended regulations. He vigorously supported collective bargaining. When he talked about "cheap labor" and "pollution" you knew that he was aiming his gun at Rick Perry. In other words, without these regulations, we have a dirty place to live! And right to work translates to cheap labor. Does he honestly believe this? Maybe he is "clueless," with an attitude.
Or, to put it more specifically, "a combination of impudence and impotence." Unfortunately, I think it's deeper than that...

Problem for Republicans is, it was a good speech. It might have been Obama's best speech of his career. Republicans now find themselves in a box. The best way out of it might be to agree to the payroll tax cut extension, the extension of unemployment benefits, the hiring credit for long term unemployed and a couple of the other sidebar items. If they do this, while leaving out the "meat" of the plan, they will have proven that they are willing to meet the president halfway. Going a step further, they can propose a one year moratorium on any new regulations. This will save billions. Will it be enough to cover the cost of their concessions? Probably not. And it is highly unlikely that Obama would agree to it. But, it could allow the American public to put a cost figure on regulations. It would also set Obama up for the November 2012 election.

Ironically, it was Obama's intention to do this to Republicans.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

RINO Reality

It was May 2006 in Miami Florida. A citizens forum was concluding. The topic: Coping with excessively high property taxes.

Gloria Alvarez(not her real name)had finished the two-hour session with a painful confession: She had sold her engagement ring to help cover the $7100 property tax bill. When she explained that her middle class home had drawn an assessment of $301,500, gasps were plainly heard in the audience.

A minor government official exclaimed, "I feel your frustration." Then she added that if taxes were not collected, city and county officials would be forced to take wage and benefit cuts. Furthermore, basic services such as garbage collection would go unfunded.

Another voice pointed out that their neighbor's property tax tab was "less than one-third" of their own. The official gamely suggested that the neighbor had likely lived there longer and had better taken advantage of "Save Our Homes," the Florida property tax law which places a cap on increases year-to-year.

2006 became 2007. First, Governor Charlie Crist proposed a plan that doubled the basic homestead exemption(from $25,000 to $50,000) and extended "portability" to homeowners. This allowed homeowners to move, taking their "save our homes" credit with them. In other words, if you had originally purchased your home for $150,000 and it now was assessed at $250,000, you would still pay your property taxes based on the original purchase amount, less the exemption, plus 3% annual increase. It was complicated and drew notable criticism. Those opposed pointed out that it "perpetuated an inequitable system."

Then House Speaker, Marco Rubio proposed an alternative. "Let's raise the sales tax 2.5% on everything except food and medicine and eliminate the property tax for homesteaders," he proffered. In Rubio fashion, the plan was straight forward and easy to understand. His argument was simple: "20% of sales tax is paid by tourists, 5% is paid by undocumented workers."

Realtors and bankers got excited. So did Florida residents. True, the exemption would apply only to Florida residents. And, it would apply only to their actual residence. Second homes, investment property, commercial property would not be affected. Rubio's argument cut to the quick: "We cannot tax people out of their homes. If people want to buy a car or a flat screen TV, they will pay more sales tax. But we will not allow government to force people on fixed incomes to move."

Opponents were quick to say, "the money doesn't add up." Rubio defended his plan by admitting that "any shortfalls will be made up with cuts in salaries and benefits for government employees." Then he went down the list of lavish salaries, perks, expenses and benefits received by city and county employees. The public became outraged. He also identified a little known fact: ten cents of every dollar paid into the state coffers was used to hire lobbyists. The public became even more incensed.

Rubio's "tax swap" flew through the Florida House of Representitives. With a Senate also controlled by Republicans, a Republican Governor and 75% of the population in favor of the plan, passage looked imminent. Instead, the Senate submitted a different plan. This "alternative" was given full blessing by Senate President, Ken Pruitt. It offered nothing close to the relief that Rubio had proposed. In fact, the reduction amounted to practically nothing. At best it was "token" relief. It was as if the "pain" had fallen on deaf ears! What had happened?

Ken Pruitt and many of his Senate co-horts were R.I.N.O.S.- Republicans in Name Only. They had looked at Rubio's plan, considered it a consumption tax, a "regressive tax" and dismissed it. Never mind that three-fourths of Floridians favored it! Pruitt and his pals knew best. They were very comfortable working with Senate Democrats to conceive a "bi-partisan" plan. House members, typically 10-years younger than Senate members were mystified. Why were they so willing to scrap a plan that attacked the problem so decisively? Did they not feel the pain of the homeowners? Did they not understand that people were being taxed out of their homes unjustly?

Evidently they didn't. In their estimation, it was too much lost revenue for government. There was concern that schools would be underfunded. Basic services might need to be cut. Cost of living increases for city and county employees would not be met. There was a worry that pension benefits might be compromised. The idea of pay freezes for city and county workers was considered "draconian."

Rubio and supporters acknowledged that "these arguments they had expected; from Democrats!" But who were these Republicans? And were they real Republicans? Recognizing the stalemate, Governor Crist eased his plan through the House and Senate. It allowed homeowners to move without forfeiting their "save our homes" accrual. It offered only token help to most Floridians. It did not prevent the Florida housing meltdown.

In retrospect, we now know that had Rubio's plan been adopted, many homeowners would have averted foreclosure. At the time of proposal, the Governor called the Rubio plan "intriguing." During the Senate campaign he called it "wacky."

Rubio should be credited for drawing clear distinction between real Republicans and RINOS. Never calling Crist by name, he constantly referred to him as "the Arlen Specter wing of the Republican party." Yet when it came down to it, GOP national sent Charlie Crist five million dollars.

Mitch McConnell, Lamar Alexander and the brass suggested to now Senator Rubio that he "run for Attorney General." They were only interested in holding the seat. Making certain that their choice truly reflected conservative values was secondary. Charlie Crist looked more electable. Were they ever wrong! Perhaps both men had been inside the beltway too long. They were blindsided by a reality. Not the conventional "RINO Reality!" Voters want leaders who stand for something!

This reality is new and much more powerful. It is a wind that is blowing in America. It is saying, "we are on to you guys!" No more, "Republicrats and Democans." Take a position! We need no more "trimmers!"

Today, you hear John Huntsman talking about appealing to a broader base of people through more moderate views. Is he talking about moderation? Or is he doing a Ken Pruitt? As in attempting to "out Democrat the Democrats."

"Broadening the tent" has been on the lips of Republican leaders for years. But how do you "broaden the tent?" To a John Huntsman type, it means that you "find middle ground with moderate Democrats in route to bi-partisanship." But is this the only way?

Many low income independents and "blue collar" Democrats see a different path toward "increasing the size of the tent." It's called "reducing the size and cost of government." To a family of four with a household income of $40,000, Rubio's plan would have meant a savings of roughly $4000 per year. This was based on the assumption that they owned a modest home in a lower middle class neighborhood. Could they have lived without some services? Probably. Were they concerned about pension and benefit cuts for city and county employees? Absolutely not! In the eyes of these voters, city and county employees were earning 50% more than they were; while enjoying superior benefits.

Many members of the party hierarchy stress that the party must not "lean to far to the right." But what is "too far to the right." Does that translate to "lean too far from the norm?"When we discuss "reducing the size and cost of government," we are talking change. To pigeonhole this change as "right wing" may be a distortion. Low income independents coming from households that earn $30,000 per year, do not consider eliminating the EPA "far right" if it results in a $22 per hour job on a gas well. A family farmer aspiring to start a cannery does not consider restricting FDA "right wing" if it means that he can proceed without government interference.

Allowing Americans to keep their own money has been demonized. It is, as if, government has a divine right to live better, control more and ultimately oversee the lives of the American people. It goes back to a culture of "government knowing best." To counter this, Republicans must identify the "wolves in sheep skin." If they are counter to the philosophy of"reducing the size and scope of government," they are not our friend. It makes little sense to waste time, and money on them.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Rove Rankle-What's truly at stake

Karl Rove is a smart guy. He has proven beyond question to be one of the premiere political minds in America. Yet, somehow, there are "winds of a cross directional nature" blowing. Perhaps it merits a closer look.

I am not referring to "American Crossroads, the 527 organization that the Former White House Deputy Chief of Staff served as an advisor to. This is deeper. We're talking about a battle for the soul of the Republican party.

Such confrontation was predictable. It has been brewing for the past 35 years. In 1976 Ronald Reagan challenged seated President, Gerald Ford on several questions. Ford's brand of Republicanism was decidedly more centrist. Reagan opposed the Equal Rights Amendment, advocated Supply Side Economics, took a "hawkish" world view and proposed the largest tax cut in American history. Ford won narrowly. But the seed had been planted. Especially the thought that "Keynesian" economic theory might not be the only way.

George Herbert Walker Bush was Reagan's 1980 opponent. It was in the New Hampshire primary that the term "Trilateral Commission" entered the dialogue. Bush had won the Iowa primary. In New Hampshire, Reagan handed out literature revealing Bush's membership in this secretive, globalist organization. He won the primary handily and went on to gain the nomination.

Did the thought of a "Trilaterial Commission" gain much traction with the American public? Probably not! When Reagan asked Bush to be his running mate, the entire episode was buried along with Bush's claim that Reagan's "Plan for Economic Recovery" was "voodoo economics." They served eight years together in complementary fashion. When Reagan left office. Bush was the ready successor.

After Bush's 1992 defeat, the Republican Congressional takeover in 1994 and the 2000 election, the party appeared as united as ever. George W. Bush was clearly to the "right" of John McCain. Karl Rove was seen as the mastermind of Republican strategy.

Things soured in 2006. Two wars, an unfunded Medicare bill and mounting debt created concern. The financial meltdown killed any chance that John McCain had to win the 2008 election. Not that Republicans were enthusiastic with his candidacy! It was "his turn" to be the nominee. Reagan Republicans likened him to "a conservative Democrat." The appropriate label, "Republican in name only(R.I.N.O.)" was year or so away from conception.

Barack Obama swept into office amidst hopeful rhetoric and a 1970's style spending and regulation agenda. The Tea Party emerged and with it an Optometrist from Kentucky with a fitting description of conservatives.

George W. Bush, who ran under a banner of "compassinate conservative" was labeled a "Neo Conservative." The Kentucky Optometrist, now Senator Rand Paul described himself as a "Constititional Conservative." Suddenly, this long subdued split in the Republican Party had names!

Paul's book, "The Tea Party Goes to Washington" described "Neo Conservatives" as favoring a large central Washington based government to facilitate conservative principles. The "Constitutional Conservatives" aspired to take a more "strict constructionist" view of the constitution in general. This translated to smaller Washington based government and less spending, coupled with more fiscal responsibility.

The media readily engaged in the discussion. They referred to the "Neo Cons" as the "Republican Establishment." Paul's "Tea Party Republicans" were positioned as "extreme" and "out of the mainstream." But they made their presence felt! In Kentucky, Paul hammered Establishment preference, Trey Grayson in the primary. His 56-44% finish against Democrat, Jack Conway in the general election showed that much of his support had come from Democrats. In Florida Marco Rubio routed Establishment choice, Charlie Crist, despite Crist's receipt of five million dollars from Republican National!

Professional to the end, Rove stayed low keyed on both races. But his frustration came out with GOP nomination of Christine O'Donnell in Delaware's primary. Rove, surprisingly became unglued. He make it clear the night of O'Donnell's victory that national support would be withdrawn and focused on winnable races. Was he correct? Probably! But, the mere fact that he was unwilling to spend any more time and energy on Delaware raised eyebrows of previously solid "Karl Rove advocates!"

Did Rove not recognize that Congressman Mike Castle was soundly beaten? Did it not occur to him why? Chances are he was only focused on retaking the Senate. Maybe he categorized O'Donnell as a "Plebeian." Rove had to reason, based on the election outcome, that a "R.I.N.O." simply wasn't good enough for Delaware Republicans! Castle had voted for T.A.R.P. and "Cap and Trade." Constitutionalists reminded everyone of these votes! In the end, the verdict read "what's the point of beating the Democrat if your candidate is only marginally different?" Republicans in Delaware wanted more than "a win on paper." Unlike Rove, they were doing more than counting Senate seats!

Rove's support of Kaye Baily Hutchinson in the 2010 Texas Governatorial race was a clear indication of his preference for Establishment candidates. And yet, his association with Governor Rick Perry goes back further than 2010. As most are learning, it was Rove who advised Perry to switch parties in 1988. Perry, a two-term Democrat in the Texas House of Representitives had been chairman of Al Gore's 1988 Presidential election bid. He switched to the Republican Party and defeated incumbant, Jim Hightower in a tight race. After Perry's successful two-term stint as Texas' Commissioner of Agriculture, some differences evidently arose regarding Perry's campaign strategy in the 1998 Lt. Governor's race.

A famous quote taken in Iowa in 2008 may have provided an additional spark. Regarding the explosion in Washington spending, Perry told Hawkeye Republicans, that "George(President Bush)isn't a fiscal conservative, never was." This didn't go over well with any of the Bush Camp. It was surprising to see Dick Cheney, James Baker and even Bush the Elder go public with their endorsement of Hutchinson in the 2010 Texas governors race. Equally emazing was the drubbing Hutchinson took from Perry. The broad differences between "Constitutional Conservatives" and "Neo Cons" were manifested. And where did Rove fit in? He was right there with Karen Hughes, Margaret Spellings and the rest of the gang! It demonstrated that the mantle had been passed, albeit not intentionally!

Can the "rankle" not be repaired? The Republican opponent in November 2012 will be Barack Obama. There is growing belief that Rick Perry is not "Rove's type of Republican." After all, the Texas Governor did not attend an Ivy League School. While he may have attended a CFR convention or two, he is not currently a member of one of the globalist secret societies such as Bill and Hillary Clinton, Bush the Elder, Barack Obama or Mitt Romney. In fact, if he were elected President, he would be the first non-Ivy Leaguer to serve in the White House since Ronald Reagan.

Perhaps this is part of the "rankle." While Perry has enjoyed success in Texas, he may not be what elites consider "Americas ruling class." Unlike Mitt Romney, Al Gore,or George W. Bush, Perry's father was not a President, Senator or Governor.(Remember Clinton and Obama grew up in fatherless households, making them victims) Nor, did he attend Harvard or Yale like Gore, Romney, the Bushes, the Clintons and Obama.

It's refreshing to view Perry's college transcript from Texas A & M. He might not have made "all A's!" But it showed that he took serious courses like "Organic Chemistry" and went through the same impersonal woes expected in a large public institution. Some might consider this inferior to the high profile polish and pedigree offered by expensive Ivy League institutions. But he did gain priceless exposure to mainstream people! In essence, he attended college with the poor as well as the privileged. He might actually be able to relate to issues that "average Joe's" deal with daily!

It could come down to Rove's instinct for picking winning Republican candidates. He knows the game! But, the game may be changing. The sun is setting on the traditional Dewey-Rockefeller Republican. It took a Tea Party Senator to put a name on it but now, the "cat is out of the bag." Nobody wants to talk about a "safe" candidate who will attract Independents and moderate Democrats. Not if it means compromising the new standard in favor of the old!

Karl Rove and countless Establishment Republicans may gravitate to the "old school." With all his flaws, Mitt Romney still looks like a "safe bet." But, what is "safe?" If it translates to "giving in" to the old guard one more time, there may be few takers!

These "new" Republicans threaten the standard. When the 10th amendment enters any discussion, the ideological difference between "Constitutionalists" and "Neo Cons" is never more apparent. It started with Education. George W. Bush sponsored "No Child Left Behind." It was a noble effort to improve educational performance and accountability nationwide. The intentions were honorable. Democrats embraced the legislation. The spirit of "bi-partisanship" glowed. But, the "constitutionalists" were quick to say, "this is federal overreach."

A renowned political strategist such as Karl Rove might suggest that "the country is not ready for that kind of thinking. It might ultimately prove to be detrimental to the Republican party." But is he certain? Is anyone certain?

Saturday, July 30, 2011

"More from Forgotten America; how they truly rank."

Rory(not his real name), my yard man, was loading equipment into his truck when he referenced an affliction that was causing him to go blind in one eye. Ruefully, he acknowedged that he had no insurance and no money to pay doctor and hospital the $5700 needed for corrective surgery.

When I asked him if he had applied for Medicaid, he said "yes." He went on to mention that his wife's health had forced the couple to pay $400 per month to cover the premiums required to maintain her necessary treatment and medication. He admitted that he "wasn't complaining;" except that there were day workers like himself who "received anything they wanted for free." The problem was they were not in the country legally. "Somehow," Rory mused, "that ain't right!"

He was referring to one of the side affects of Phyler versus Doe, the 1982 Supreme Court ruling. Phyler versus Doe ultimately extended entitlements to illegal aliens. In the proposed "American English Unification Amendment" ("E" Amendment) introduced in "E" is for English, Phyler versus Doe would be superceded.

How much is America spending to facilitate this Supreme Court ruling? Studies should reveal much more than most Americans could possibly imagine! With Congress in gridlock over budget cuts, it's truly amazing that this variable has not surfaced. Perhaps it's because nobody wants to talk about it!

Certainly, both Republicans and Democrats are willing to discuss Rory's woes. Democrats conclude that the solution is universal health care. In the eyes of Barack Obama, his "new health care legislation" should answer the question and then some. But will it? As Rory admitted, "I see people drawing disability checks driving around in expensive cars, living in nice homes. Somehow, they're getting paid. But I also know people who don't have enough to eat and are getting $12 per month in food stamps! That's it! I'm talking about people, American people who have worked all their lives and paid into the system."

Republicans point to one measure that would have some tangible result. By allowing all 1300 health insurance companies to cross state lines, the prices for health insurance would logically come down. As Florida Senator, Marco Rubio asked, "what if you could buy your car insurance only from State Farm, Alstate and Shelter?" A guy with a 10th grade education like Rory could figure that one out! "Our car insurance rates would skyrocket!" he laughs. "But why can't we do that with health insurance?" Great question!

Guys like Rory(and a lot of other Americans) would like to know "why" illegal aliens can have free health insurance, food stamps, low income housing, A.F.D.C and other entitlements when 43 million people have no health insurance and are limited to minimal amounts of entitlements? Would guys like Rory be in favor of the "E" Amendment? What about more affluent people? Do they feel that it is their obligation to house, feed and provide medical care for people unlawfully in the country?

Cynics would conclude that the President would never press the issue. After all, he wants to "grant them amnesty so that they will become new Democrat voters." In fairness, we cannot think that lowly of President Obama. Especially since Republicans are also "keeping mum" on the subject!

Maybe it's because to do so would be politically incorrect. Most of the media would demonize any politician who dared suggest that we "stop taking care of children." They would ridicule any political leader who supported "starving illegals into self deportation." Had Speaker Boehner included such a measure in his deficit reduction package, guys like Chris Mathews would have referred to him as having "a heart of a thousand fiends."

Returning to Rory. How would passing the "E" Amendment help him save the sight in his eye? For starters, we would have more to invest in "forgotten America." Most Americans agree. Charity begins at home! We need to turn our attention to people living legally in the country.

It might not happen immediately. But with other practical measures such as allowing unrestricted competition for medical providers and "tort reform" we would be on the path toward a solution. It's a start in the right direction.

Democrats believe that they have accomplished this very notion. They are inflicting "mental morphine" into the psyches! "Reducing health care costs for all" was not accomplished by the new legislation. In fact it does the opposite! Everyones costs are heading up, including those of Medicare recipients. "Disaffecteds," members of forgotten America such as Rory, were completely left out.

So who did benefit? People with pre-existing conditions. 26 year-olds living with their parents? Some union members? Sounds like a handful of people benefited at the expense of the rest us! Worse still, illegals receiving medicare and medicaid were never mentioned!

Imagine building a road across a grassy meadow. What happens if you begin pouring asphalt immediately on the grass? Without prep work? The end result is "a mess." You have built something unsustainable.Get the picture!

Hardworking survivors like Rory aren't asking for universal healthcare. In fact, they aren't looking for a "handout," or even a "hand." The bare essentials are accepted with a mild degree of shame and embarrasment. But only as a last resort! These are self reliant, proudly independent Americans. They only ask to be remembered.

Friday, July 22, 2011

"Punching the Winning Ticket"

Republicans are in universal agreement on one thing: "They want to make Barack Obama a one-term President."

There are some differences and preferences. For the most part, however, Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Michelle Bachmann, Newt Gingrich and the rest are arguing from the same piece of paper. True, Ron Paul has added some Libertarian flavor. Rick Santorum keeps social issues in the forefront. Herman Cain is a clear Tea Party alternative. Convincing "Americas' taken for granted" and "Americas' forgotten" will be the deciding factor.

I am not speaking of Republicans. They will not vote for Obama. Not even some of the "R.I.N.O.s" who were duped into straying in 08! Specifically, we are looking at two distinct groups: The "Disaffecteds," referred to in the June 16th blog and the "D.I.N.O.s"(Democrats in Name Only) introduced in the July 2nd blog. Win these two groups and you win the White House!

What do "Disaffecteds and D.I.N.O.'s" have in common? Let's examine their "wish list."

1. They want a simplified tax system that is fair and uncomplicated. A common complaint from both groups is "there are all kinds of tax loop holes that only rich people can take advantage of," that there is "minimal help" for "people raising children,"and they "don't have the resources to retain a high powered C.P.A."

2. They want a guarantee that entitlements are not going away. They understand that the Social Security age needs to be raised. They want Medicare to remain in place but acknowledge that "waste and fraud" are rampant. They are open to the idea that Medicaid "may best be handled from state level." The idea of illegal aliens, even children accessing Medicaid infuriates them. In short, they want health insurance premiums to drop. Drastically! "If it means allowing companies to cross state lines, let 'em come." To "D.I.N.O.'s and "Disaffecteds" this takes preference even over accommodating those with pre-existing conditions! "Sorry!"

3. They want jobs. PERIOD! This is more important to "D.I.N.O.s" and "Disaffecteds" than "threatening a sand lizard's existence" in Texas, or disturbing the "migratory patterns of Polar Bears in Alaska!" They are happy to relax FDA rules in favor of accommodating small food processors in rural areas. Same holds true for energy producers, mining resources in sparsely settle places like the Bakken basin of Montana and North Dakota. They have one question, "will jobs be created if these regulations are relaxed?" If the answer is "yes," they're in!

Both groups traditionally have a deep mistrust of Washington. To "D.I.N.O.'s" it was Washington that "ousted God from our public schools." To "Disaffecteds" it was Washington who "gave companies their blessing to ship our jobs overseas."

"D.I.N.O.'s" will cheer at the though of closing the Department of Education; provided pell grants remain available. "Disaffecteds" would be ready to pop the cork from a champaign bottle(or more accurately pop the top off a beer can)at word that the EPA was closing! Both groups would applaud the abolition of the Energy Department. To them, this is simply excessive government.

What about a balanced budget amendment? What about "term limits" for Congressmen and Senators?

"D.I.N.O.'s" and "Disaffecteds" aren't the brightest students of big government. They have a simplied perception of the way it should be. And maybe there's some wisdom to that! Why do we need all of these agencies? Especially if we cannot afford them! Why are we tied to standards that were imposed through judicial actions? What if those actions were partisan based? Are we yet bound to them? Can we not change some of these laws that may have been based on previously flawed judicial judgment? If so, how?

Let's start with the previous questions. Yes, a balanced budget amendment makes sense. They are painfully aware of what it's like to live on a budget. Why does Washington have a problem with it? Maybe it's because "it will be more difficult to rewards supporters" with "pork!" Term limits should be the law! Why not give more people a chance to represent their country? After all, it's difficult get someone out of office once they're entrenched! And, be real! Who's going to fire themselves from the best job in America?"

Do we detect a trace of cynicism here? If so, it is cynicism born of frustration! The "Disaffecteds" are "forgotten America." The "D.I.N.O.s" are "America's taken for granted."Both groups have been largely ignored by the political establishment, Republicans and Democrats alike. Now they are ready to send Washington a message!

Where can these "Disaffecteds" and "D.I.N.O.s" be found?

The best place to start the D.I.N.O. hunt is in the rural areas of Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. Many are consistently voting for Republicans. True, they were fooled by the cordial accents of Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. And, in many cases, remained registered Democrats only "to vote in local elections." This is especially the case in states holding closed primaries. Some voted for Obama. After all, they are more fair minded than some might think. However, don't double talk these D.I.N.O.s! They prescribe to an old saying, "fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!"

The "Disaffecteds" generally abound in high unemployment areas. The Midwest holds many and if a candidate can convince them that their entitlements will not be placed in jeopardy, they have no problem with "reducing the cost of government." In essence, "you can pull the plug on any and all Washington agencies, if it means more jobs and doesn't take away my Medicare and Social Security entitlement."

In short, convince these two groups that "their needs are the needs of the country" and help yourself to the keys to the White House! Barack Obama did as much!

My inner most feeling hints that America will not give the President a second chance. Certainly there are those who will say it is because he's a "man of color." There may be a hint of truth to that! Nobody ever suggested that it would not be harder for a first time Black President. Even with media support, questions remain with Barack Obama's original qualifications. He didn't have a "thick resume" when he sought the office. Some of his appointments have been suspect. Perhaps the greatest hurdle for the President is the preception that he "campaigned from the center, then governed from the left." To "D.I.N.O.'s" and "Disaffecteds" this constitutes "disception."

The Republicans should remember this when nominating an opponent for Obama. Establishment Republicans will vote for any of the aforementioned candidates. Tea Party Repubicans may like some more than others, but they are not wavering. Welcoming all Americans hurt by the Obama's agenda can and will make the difference. Especially in swing states.

Many "D.I.N.O.s" are Evangelical Christians. Others are "fiscal conservatives" concerned with the debt and rising healthcare costs. They are key to Republicans recapturing Virginia, North Carolina, Indiana and Iowa. They do not support Obamacare and they are disgusted with the growth and overreach of government. They believe that states should play a greater role in education and the environment.

Ohio, Florida and Michigan are awash with "Disaffecteds." Many are unemployed and underemployed. Their attitude is "show me a job and I'll show you my vote!"

The question becomes, "which Republican candidate can best bring both "D.I.N.O.'s" and "Disaffecteds" into the GOP tent? Here's a hint! He is not on the list of candidates named earlier.

In an earlier blog Florida Senator, Marco Rubio was identified as a candidate who could defeat Barack Obama. I stand by that assertion. But in the Republican scheme of things, it doesn't always work that way! Rubio's time will come and he stands to be the best possible Vice Presidential option for the 2012 ticket.

Considering the economy and the need to attract "D.I.N.O.s" and "Disaffecteds" the candidate who best fits the bill is Texas Governor, Rick Perry. Perry simply has it all!

It begins with the fact that he switched parties in 1988. It wasn't a matter of changing his mind. It was more along the Ronald Reagan logic of "I didn't leave the Democratic Party, it left me."

The Democrats have evolved from a party that favored working families and small business' to a mouthpiece for special interests, non-taxpayers, unions and the ultra-super rich. Perry grew up on a farm near Abilene, Texas, the son of tenant farmers. He graduated from Texas A & M University. He later flew F-130's in the Air Force. Sounds like Middle Class America! He epitomizes the "Reagan Democrat" of the eighties. To "D.I.N.O" Democrats, "he's real."

Rick Perry has served 10 years as Governor of the second largest and one of the most diverse states in America. To top it off, Texas has accounted for 38% of all of the total U.S. jobs created during Obama's tenure. That, it itself will convince "Disaffecteds!" To them, it's about surviving! This translates to jobs, while retaining entitlements currently held. In spite of his flowery rhetoric, Obama hasn't delivered!

Perry is a constitutionalist. He is very quick to point to the 10th amendment as reason to rethink our massive Washington establishment. Maybe we need to bring decisions closer to home! It's food for thought!

The bare facts are, Perry's report card is "all "A's" when it comes to job creation. He has, what Barack Obama didn't have when seeking the Oval Office: "a resume!" True, he will scare anyone who loves the status quot. To them, he will "rock the boat," upsetting the way that "things have been done" in Washington.

To those wanting to make Barack Obama a "one-term president," Rick Perry is truly the "winning ticket." He will dramatically bring both "D.I.N.O.s" and "Disaffecteds" into the fold. They will support him hands down; for different reasons. Part of it relates to dissatifaction with Obama. Another factor is that Rick Perry "exudes confidence." As Dizzy Dean once said, "it ain't braggin', if you've done it!"

Barack Obama has demonstrated a sensitive ego throughout his tenure. He doesn't take criticism well. It's as if he is, "a legend in his own mind." At the core Obama is an "ideologue," painfully "over his head," who wants to give the impression of being in charge. Maybe this explains the arrogance that most perceive. When times are not good people resent being lectured! Especially from someone who hasn't felt the pain of a seemingly endless recession!

Which bring me to another saying, this from former University of Texas Head Football coach, Darrell Royal. As Royal quipped, "there is no such thing as King Kong. For those who think that there is, you better get ready to wipe your bloody nose."