Archive for August, 2009

A Liberal Can’t Change its Spots

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

There have been numerous blogs and a few articles in the mainstream media (such as this Star Tribune article) about financial difficulty in the Minnesota Democrat-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party. A couple liberal bloggers and this blog from Minnesota Democrats Exposed outlined some of the trouble and potential trouble facing the DFL, including potential fines from the Federal Elections Commission, an unresolved tax issue, and internal strife over finances.

The internal financial strife involves annual dues that statewide DFL officeholders and DFL Congressional representatives are requested to pay to something called the United Democratic Fund, which is a special funding arm within the DFL Party. Some of the officeholders are current with their dues, while others have not.

Sen. Klobuchar, Sen. Franken and Congressman Ellison collectively owe $100,000 to the fund. Meanwhile DFL Party Chair Brian Melendez fired out a memo to party leaders stating the fund is about to go broke because of “unpaid partners”.

My personal favorite line in Melendez’s e-mail is, “Unfortunately, we cannot keep spending more than we are collecting.”

Uh, Brian . . . have you seen your party’s office holders in action? Spending more money than what is available is what they do! It stands to reason they expect you to follow suit. Furthermore, Brian, they’re liberals. They are only generous with other people’s money. I’m not is the busines of giving the DFL free advice, but I suggest you don’t hold your breath wating for the checks to arrive.

Health Care Earthquake Could Result in 2010 Electoral Aftershock

Monday, August 10th, 2009

Hardly a day goes by without news reports of opponents to government-run health care “disrupting” town hall meetings conducted by members of Congress. Although I am adamantly opposed to people being uncivil at a forum where civil discourse and respect for others is expected, I suspect many of the reports of “angry mobs” are overstated. And if the protesters we have been hearing about are engaging in intimidation tactics, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. Word is, union activists are getting into the act. There is no group in the country that has perfected thuggery like union activists. The person being treated in an emergency room in St. Louis in this story was attacked by a Service Employees International Union (SEIU) member wearing the union’s trademark purple shirt, according to a Fox News TV report this morning.

There is no doubt people are angry over the prospect of losing more of their freedom, and our nations leaders handing over more of our economy to the government in a slide toward socialism. No doubt this is a time like no other in forty years. Think about it. Barack H. Obama is the most left-leaning president since LBJ, maybe since FDR. Until now, only two Democrats have ascended to the White House since LBJ. And the people didn’t have as much to fear with them. Jimmy Carter was too incompetent to implement a socialist agenda, even if he had wanted to, and even with huge majorities in Congress. And Bill Clinton was too busy doing, well, doing what Bill Clinton does best to really mess up the country. So here we are with a guy in the oval office who has personal appeal of Bill Clinton (but without the personal baggage)  of Bill Clinton, and with huge Congressional majorities enjoyed by Carter. For all practical purposes there are no checks and balances in Washington, and people are scared.

And it wasn’t the health care issue that started it all. The conservative earthquake may be in response to government-run health care, but the early tremors were felt when conservatives spoke out against the proposed cap & trade (cap & tax) energy bill.

Whether the aftershocks result in a seismic shift in Congressional power might be dependent upon how moderate “blue dog” Democrats handle the strong opposition to their leadership’s policies. Many of these blue dogs were elected in 2006 and 2008 in Republican-leaning or swing districts. They ran as being moderate, centrist, independent of party control. The issues such as cap & tax and government-run health care will force them to choose whether they will vote their districts, or vote with their party leadership.

They will also have to decide how they will handle town hall meeting attendees. If they genuinely listen they may stay in the good graces of their constituents. Democrat Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa reportedly went against the wishes of his staff and took the heat by hearing out angry constituents at a town hall meeting (my cynical side says this could have been staged). On the other hand, if members of Congress dismiss protesters as angry mobs or people bought and paid for by special interests, that will be their first step toward their ultimate political demise. Some Congressmen such as Tim Walz, Democrat of Minnesota’s 1st Congressional District, is  staying in hiding, and not holding town meetings, as reported by the Owatonna People’s Press. Avoiding the heat from constituents cannot be much more preferable to getting negative editorials such as this one.

Now, I’m not one to give free advice to Democrats, but if they misunderestimate, to use a Bushism, the genuine grassroots uprising against this slide toward socialism, the 2010 election could result in one of the biggest shifts in power in the U. S. House of Representatives in modern times. If they listen and vote their districts, they may avoid the loss of seats that the party of the man in the White House typically experiences in his first mid-term election.