Thursday, November 30, 2006

Now That's News: Brummett Gets It Right On Courts


As I read the latest John Brummett column, something I normally do to help raise my blood pressure, I read something that hit me with the impact of a waffle iron to the groin. Brummett and I both fear judicial over-reach on Lakeview! Here is what he said in this column:

"As the right-winger in the group, I came out four-square for separation of powers and asserted that there is no separation if the judicial branch presumes to maintain ongoing monitoring of the legislative branch. Courts have power to rule on cases, but the responsibility then to close them. Closed means closed.

This idea that the Supreme Court needs to maintain open-ended jurisdiction to make sure each new legislative session maintains appropriate pace on progress is fatally flawed. .....Are we prepared to make Lake View the eternal lawsuit? People tend to resent the courts. Judges don't need to give people good reason
."

As soon as I regained consciousness I realized that the tide is turning. Even a liberal like Brummett- most of the six legislators he lauded on education were among the ones who have blown it for years, spending billions with no discernable improvement- realizes that the courts should are not supposed to be in charge of the legislature. He is still confused because he thinks secular ideas like the ones held by some of these folks are the answer, but at least he wants it done legislatively.

Many secularists seek to impose through the courts an agenda they cannot win at the ballot box. They have no regard for niceties like the rule of law, separation of powers, original intent, self-government, or the will of the people. They are only interested in imposting their elitist claptrap on the rest of us, figuring they can then use the law as a hammer to pound us sheep into compliance. In the long run, that idea is a loser from people who can't win the intellectual debate.

When everyone from me to Brummett knows it is time to clamp down on the judiciary, it is time to clamp down on the judiciary. I say again for possible penetration: the ledge should refer an amendment to the people which plainly says that they, not the courts, are the ones to determine funding levels for education and anything else. Time was we all knew that and it did not have to be spelled out. If the ledge does not have a showdown with the courts now they will push again later. Once the regular session is over they cannot refer an amendment. They will have this option closed to them for two years.

"This will be a Part of Mexico"


We have found the real location, at least for now, of the ever illusive Mexican Consulate in Little Rock. It will be in a beige brick house across 36th street behind a strip mall that contains a Bank of America branch. Being close to the bank is quite handy, all the better to get a "Consular" ID card from the embassy, and quickly wire back earnings to the mother country. Why waste it on the local economy like legal workers would do? No sense helping all those thieving Norteamericanos.

And why is it taking so long? Well, the current Counsular, a Mr. Chao, explains in a Demo-zette Article by Daniel Nasaw: The Mexican government is renting the new building, and Chao said the owners were unfamiliar with the legal processes involved in contracting with a foreign government. The Mexican office is the first foreign consulate in the state, and Chao said attorneys spent six weeks hammering out the agreement.

“It’s a little difficult to understand that the consulate is going to be part of Mexico,” Chao said. “We wasted a lot of time trying to put together, in the same communication channels, the lawyers for the owner and the lawyers for the foreign ministry of Mexico.”

Got that? It is a part of Mexico, so don't you little twerp Arkansans even THINK about trying to enforce any of your laws there!

Until they move in, Nasaw reports that the Mexican government has been sponging off your dime in an insider deal that would have gotten Governor Mike Huckabee and Director Trevino arrested if they had done such a thing with a private business.

Well, OK, Nasaw didn't quite put it that way. He said,"Last July, Mexican officials moved into a small vacant office in a Little Rock building used by Arkansas Rehabilitation Services. The chief of that agency, Robert Trevino, had been Huckabee’s economic development adviser and point man on the consulate project. The space was to be unoccupied until November, and Trevino offered it after discussions with Chao’s assistant, Jorge Campos.

The Arkansas Building Authority, which handles leases for state agencies, valued the office space at $572 per month. The consulate signed an agreement with Trevino to pay $1 a year."

Mexico has long abused the issuance of Consular ID cards, because they do not require a passport to show you entered the county legally in order to get one. Chao said Mexicans seeking consular ID cards must produce their Mexican birth certificate and other original identification from Mexico, but I did some research and happen to know that is not true. Mexican consulates hand these things out like candy to anyone who they have reason to believe is a Mexican citizen, with or without the proper ID.

Proper Use of Judicial Authority


A federal judge ruled this week that the guidelines President Bush handed down to the Treasury department were "too vague" to be constitutional. Specifically, Bush had authorized the secretary of the treasury to designate (as terrorists) anyone who "assists, sponsors or provides services to" or is "otherwise associated with" a designated terrorist group.

She let stand sections of the order that penalize those who provide "services" to designated terrorist groups- including the humanitarian aid and rights training proposed by the plaintiffs in the case.

I have been quick to critisize the judicial branch for their many abuses of power, so I want to be just as quick to speak up when they do something right. "otherwise associated with" IS too vauge. It gives the executive branch more unchecked power to form a blacklist than anyone ought to have in a free society. The nature of the association should be reasonably connected to the illegal activity.

This is an example of the way judicial power is supposed to work- the courts protecting citizens from an over-zealous Executive branch. Compare that to what the courts have spent too much effort doing lately- imposing elitest views on the citizens against their will on the flimsiest of legal grounds. The former activity serves the rights of the citizens, the latter denies them of the very fundamental right of ordering their communities as they see fit.

The courts should make sure the laws are not so flawed that they ruin the innocent, not tell the legislature what ought to be legal or illegal. For example, the courts should be able to throw out parts of a law on child pornagraphy if the law says that the government has the authority to examine everyone's computer at random to find such materials, but the court has no business telling the people or the legislature that they cannot pass any law at all against porn. In all but the plainest constitutional matters, the people through the legislature should define what wrong behavior is, and the courts should not stand in judgement of what they define as wrong behavior, but only whether the wording in their law is unjust toward the innocent in some way.

In conclusion, Christian Constitutionalists like myself are not against the courts. We need the courts to protect us against persecution or against an encroaching police state. We don't want the courts to go away. Instead, we wish the courts would quit blowing their credibility and goodwill among the populace by doing things like trying to impose homosexual marriage on the people, or purging all expression of Christianity from the public square, or ordering the legislature to spend a certain amount on education. Doing those things costs the court respect and goodwill from the people. Someday, they may need that political capital to help protect us fron an executive that goes too far.

Rogers Mayor Moves Forward on Enforcement of Immigration Laws

Mayor Womack: Does he look like he's kidding?
*******************

Rogers Mayor Steve Womack is moving forward with plans to have city police enforce federal immigration law. Rogers has recently suffered a spate of violent crime in the streets at the hands of illegal aliens.

After all the talk from politicians on illegal immigration, it looks like one is finally going to do something about it- and I don't question the sincerity of others who say they are concerned about the issue, but Womack is in a position to deliver and he is doing it.

Once the training is in place, Rogers police will be able to check out people, even at routine traffic stops, against a national database. If someone's paperwork is not in order, they will have a direct connection to immigration enforcement. A similar plan launched in a Virginia city this April has already netted 1,000 illegal aliens, 128 of whom have already been deported. It would not surprise if a similar number were apprehended in Rogers in 2007, unless the forces of PC can somehow derail Womack on this.

Will they try? Of course. Will they succeed in frustrating the will of the people again by stopping Womack? Look into his eyes. I don't think so.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Maryland Man Wants to Become Illegal Alien



Becoming Illegal (From a Maryland resident to his senator)
***********************************************
The Honorable Paul S. Sarbanes
309 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington DC, 20510
>>> > > > >
Dear Senator Sarbanes,
>>> > > > >
As a native Marylander and excellent customer of the Internal Revenue Service, I am writing to ask for your assistance. I have contacted the Department of Homeland Security in an effort to determine the process for becoming an illegal alien and they referred me to you.

My primary reason for wishing to change my status from U.S. Citizen to illegal alien stem from the bill which was recently passed by the Senate and for which you voted. If my understanding of this bill's provisions is accurate, as an illegal alien who has been in the United States for five years, all I need to do to become a citizen is to pay a $2,000 fine and income taxes for three of the last five years. I know a good deal when I see one and I am anxious to get the process started before everyon figures it out.

Simply put, those of us who have been here legally have had to pay taxes every year so I'm excited about the prospect of avoiding two years of taxes in return for paying a $2,000 fine. Is there any way that I can apply to be illegal retroactively? This would yield an excellent result for me and my family because we paid heavy taxes in 2004 and 2005.
>>> > > > >
Additionally, as an illegal alien I could begin using the local
emergency room as my primary health care provider. Once I have stopped paying premiums for medical insurance, my accountant figures I could save almost $10,000 a year. Another benefit in gaining illegal statu would be that my daughter would receive preferential treatment relative to her law school applications, as well as "in-state" tuition rates for many colleges throughout the United States for my son.

Lastly, I understand that illegal status would relieve me of the burden of renewing my driver's license and making those burdensome car insurance premiums. This is very important to me given that I still have college age children driving my car.

If you would provide me with an outline of the process to become
illegal (retroactively if possible) and copies of the necessary forms, I would be most appreciative. Thank you for your assistance.

>>> > > > > Your Loyal Constituent,
>>> > > > > Pete McGlaughlin
>>> > > > > Get your Forms (NOW)!! Call your Internal Revenue Service
>>> > > > > 1-800-289-1040.
>>> > > > > Please pass this onto your friends so they can save on this great
>>> > > > > offer!!!!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Judicial Overreach Report: Have the Other Two Branches Found Their Backbone?


It seems from this Rob Moritz article that the Executive Branch has finally decided that it has had enough of the courts pushing them around on the Lakeview case. The legislature last week denied the court a requested funding increase- and one legislator pointedly mentioned the Lakeview case as the funding request was denied.

Four school districts have asked the court to keep the Lakeview case open. They also wanted to keep the legislature's court-appointed "Special Masters" on hand to make sure the ledge shovels a huge amount of taxpayer dollars their way.

Here is the key part of the brief from Deputy Attorney General Tim Gauger," (extension of court control would....) render utterly meaningless our constitution's requirement of the separation of powers."

"The court should not accept the invitation of individual school districts, whether one or 100, for the court to take up a new role as a 'board of review' that automatically, and perpetually, reviews legislative enactments concerning public education," the brief said.

"Such a scheme would plainly violate the constitutionally mandated separation of the executive, legislative and judicial branches of state government, and violate the respect each branch must give the others as co-equal parts of our government,"

Until now the hue and cry has been, "we must comply with the courts". When the AG's office starts talking about "Constitutional Seperation of Powers" you know they've had enough.

It sounds like what those of us on the right have been saying for years. The fact that the AGs office is saying it now tells me that Beebe is signaling that he will be running this state, not the courts. Now that the Executive and Legislative branches are run by the same party, they are more united in a fight to protect their sphere of government from court intrusion. Before, each was afraid that the other would side with the court- with help from the establishment media, to make them look like the bad guys.

State Game and Fish and "Kingdoms Unto Themselves"


Another article on the State Game and Fish Commission has me arguing with myself and losing. The Commission is arguing that they do not have to abide by the pay scales set by the legislature like other agencies do. The reason? They have constitutional authorization to be semi-independent, kind of like the State Highway Commission.

Their position was prompted by a lawsuit from four Game and Fish Employees who said the Commission's pay policies were "irrational" because employees with the same rank and less time in service were paid more than they were.

I don't know that I agree that paying people strictly by rank and time in service is the only "rational" method of compensation. There could be other factors, like difficulty of assignment or some special skill, that would make disparate pay the logical choice. Unfortunatly, corruption and favoratism is another possible reason for the pay differences. In private business, a worker who is better than another at the same job might well be paid more. The mindset that this is an "irrational" way to pay people is buearucratic thinking at its finest/worst.

I keep arguing with myself over all these "kingdoms unto themselves" in our government. Forgive me while I muse in print.

The Highway Commission does its own thing with 900 million or more taxpayer dollars each year. The Game and Fish Commission has its own structure and seeks to escape legislative purview. University Presidents now routinely flout the expressed will of the legislature concerning financial aid for persons in this nation illegally. I find the principle of semi-unaccountable fiefdoms with a secured line of taxpayer funding disconcerting. I think it is a receipe for arrogance, corruption, and a loss of a service-oriented mindset.

I am all for seperation of powers as a principle, and local control as a principle too. I guess what worries me here is that this is not a true seperation of powers or local control issue. Each of these fiefdoms has full or near full power within their sphere of operations. They are not reliant on the legislative branch for their funding, and the executive branch can only indirectly influence them through board appointments. They each promulgate a lot of their own rules. They are their own legislative, executive and judicial branches all in one. It is not a seperation of powers, but a division of government in a way that makes each fiefdom less accountable to the people.

IN the same way, each of these institutions has a statewide reach. It is not a true local-control situation, it is just that instead of one set of bosses in Little Rock there are many sets, each with their own little kingdoms that are centrally controlled.

Have I got any answers on this one? Not really. Today I am just a blogger who is musing in print.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Big Business No Longer in Conservative Coalition


The recent Doug Thompson piece on the election results has me thinking- as Thompson often does when he is at his best.

His main point is that, except for Congressman John Boozeman who was running against an underfunded populist Democrat, the business community bought into the idea that the Democrats would rule the state more competently than the Republicans. The Republican coalition since 1980 has consisted of religous conservatives and business interests. Thompson hints that since the religious conservatives won the primaries, the business side of the coalition did more than abandon the Republican side, it actively supported the Democrats.

He had limited space to delve into it, but I'd like to give it a try here...

(continued, click SUNDAY below and scroll down for article, or if sent straight here just scroll down)

Friday, November 24, 2006

Unintended Consequences- Mineral Rights Go to Game and Fish

Arkansas government seems full of "Kingdoms Unto Themselves". At least with the State Game and Fish Commission, their kingdom is constitutional. They compare very favorably with State University Presidents who do whatever the bad place they want to, and Supreme Court Justices who think they are supposed to set budgets for the legislative branch of government.

The voters voted in an amendment that said the State Game and Fish Commission gets a one-eighth cent sales tax, and the right to all proceeds arising from the sale or operation of state lands. The language was too broad. At the time, we thought it would apply only to things like park fees. It turns out there are many millions of dollars worth of natural gas leases on state land. Because sales tax revenues are so high, the State Game and Fish Commission is flush with money already. If you see one of their vehicles driving by, take notice of how it is nicer than the one you are driving.

Sen. Steve Faris of Malvern has suggested a constitutional amendment to allow mineral rights dollars from state lands to be used for other purposes besides Game and Fish. It is not because he is against having a strong Game and Fish in our state- it is one of our natural strengths. Rather, this is an unintended consequnce of the amendment. Most laws do have unintended consequences, when they are set in the Constitution, they are that much harder to undo.

Proof We Are Not Helpless in the Culture War

Wal-Mart had jumped into the Culture War with both feet- on the side of the homosexual agenda. The American Family Association had called for a boycott of Wal-Mart this Friday through Sunday. This is the busiest shopping weekend of the year.

Many predicted that Wal-Mart would just shrug it off. They have a reputation of digging their heels in. They like to win. They make calculated, well thought out moves long in advance before they act. They are a gigantic international company, and some group of nuts (like you and me) headed by an old preacher in Mississippi was not going to change their direction. The fact that they bought a glut of ads on Christian radio stations throughout the south only strengthened the view that they were going to try to muscle their way past the boycott.

Imagine what happened when the Ad Execs were told to buy up ad time on Christian radio stations in Arkansas, home state for Wal-Mart. The execs could only report back that this would be impossible, as almost every christian radio station in the state is run by AFA! They don't take ads, and if they did it would not be from Wal-Mart!

Somehow, the Titanic turned on a dime. The announced boycott was only two days old before Wal-Mart announced that it would no longer involve itself in controversial issues. AFA has declared itself satisfied with the change and called off the boycott. Do I trust Wal-Mart, or more specifically the homosexual activists who have wormed their way into the corporate structure and have an agenda over and above helping the company prosper? No. They will try again. But now we see that it is possible to stop them.

The main thing we should take out of this is that we are not helpless in the face of cultural decline. If we band together in groups like the AFA, we can make a difference. We don't have to take the poor quality of political leaders we have been offered either. More about that in a future edition.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

37% of American Births Out-of-Wedlock

Thirty Seven percent of total births in the U.S. are now illegitimate. The problem has two components, domestic and foreign. Births of immigrants, legal and illegal, make up an increasing number of births in the U.S., and the largest immigrant groups have disproportionate numbers of illegitimate births.

On the domestic side, many young couples are living together with the knowledge that they can stiff the taxpayers with the cost of their first baby if they don't marry until after the child is born.

Marriage is definitely under attack in this country. It is under attack from homosexual militants, now from polygamists, and also from plain old fashioned heterosexual immorality. Our leaders have apparently gone mad and devised a system of perverse disincentives to marry, while failing to rein in the secular courts who are determined to impose a re-definition of marriage on our population. In addition, our leaders seemed determined to allow waves of people in this country with no consideration of whether or not they are persons of virtue and integrity.

Can a United States of Illegitimate Illegal Immigrants stay a prosperous nation? Can a nation whose leaders are so blind and willfull in tearing down God's standards for civil government stay free in the next generation, or will we descend into the sorry state of the people of Iraq- needing the rule of a strongman because we no longer possess the virtue and restraint to rule ourselves?

Is the Ledge Finally Showing Some "Grit" To Runaway Judiciary?

Is the Legislature finally showing some grit and defending their rightful sphere of government from court intrusions? Could it be that they have had enough of being pushed around by the boys in black?

A warning shot across the bow was fired yesterday when the legislature denied the State Supreme Court a massive budget increase request from the court. The court spends about $3.6 now, they wanted to up that about 15% a year for the next two years, including generous raises for their own. The court sent Chief Justice Hannah, who was very respectful of the legislature before the committee. Hannah was also one of the two on the court who has been respectful of them from the bench- his minority opinion was that the courts were exceeding their authourity by taking the Lakeview School Funding case back up.

The legislators were not buying the court's request for a funding increase, and some of them were not shy about saying the Lakeview school funding case was part of the reason why. "At the risk of being disbarred, obviously the court has been very interested in how this body has treated K-12 education in the past," pointedly cooed Rep. Chris Thyer, D-Jonesboro.

"We sent them (education) out at base, and so I would just say, let's treat them (the Supreme Court) the exact same way and send them out at base," he said. That's what they did. They kept the court's funding levels at their current amount.

Perhaps the legislature will finally show some gumption and check the courts. In our form of government the Legislature, not the courts, are supposed to have the power of the purse strings. The courts are out of line ordering legislatures to spend more of the people's money on anything.

On the other hand, the way the State Supreme Court ruled on Lakeview, maybe the courts will just order the legislature to increase the court's budget too! Why not? The logic would be the same as their logic in Lakeview, that the COURTS have the authority to determine what a "Constitutional" level of funding is.

If the ledge finally starts fighting back, the courts can either back down or dig in. In case of the latter, it would be wise for the ledge to send a constitutional amendment to the people that puts the judges in their place. If they don't do it in regular session, they will not be able to for two more years.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

IBO - Anti-Christian Education Program Implemented in Arkansas by SB1054 of 2005

It was slipped through the legislature with not one legislator voting against it and probably less than 5% of legislators know it has been implemented
It is being implemented in Jonesboro, Arkansas as an elementary magnet school
It has already been implemented at Springdale, Hot Springs, and North Little Rock

So What is IBO? IBO stands for International Baccalaureate Organization. " School board members in a Minnesota district call it anti-American and anti-Christian. In New Jersey, members of one school board argue it's a waste of money. Now, a suburban Pittsburgh school district is abolishing it over questions of politics and cost" 1

Critics argue that IB's multicultural themes promote values that conflict with traditional Judeo-Christian values. One teachers objects to the program because of IBO's endorsement of the Earth Charter which calls for sustainability of the Earth through, among other things, responsible reproduction and wealth distribution. Many opponents have called it Marxist.2

Jeanne Geiger, an outspoken critic of the program in Reston, Va., wrote to a local newspaper: "Administrators do not tell you that the current IB program for ages 3 through grade 12 promotes socialism, disarmament, radical environmentalism and moral relativism, while attempting to undermine Christian religious values and national sovereignty." 3

IBO is a very expensive controversial educational program. One organization has estimated that it "costs taxpayers about $200,000 per year over regular school expenses to have the IB program in a school. 4

It is often substituted for advanced placement courses that one critic describes this way: "No longer are children learning the difference between capitalism and socialism. No longer are children being taught why the United States became the most powerful economic engine the world has ever known. Instead, they are being taught that with less than 5 percent of the world's population, the U.S. uses 25 percent of the world's resources and produces 25 percent of the world's pollution.5

"They are being taught that the U.S. is the No. 1 terrorist nation. They are being taught that the rest of the world is mired in poverty because of the greedy capitalists in the United States." IBO is also referred to as social engineering." 6

International Baccalaureate Organization (also known as IB, IBO, IBP, MYP, ISM - MYP) is a United Nations educational program located in Geneva, Switzerland. IBO "has endorsed the Earth Charter – an earth-centered collection of global principles which honor global political-ethical-moral and spiritual unification. Some, such as Mikhail Gorbachev, have gone so far as to compare the Earth Charter with 'those 10 or 15 Commandments which we all know about...those famous testaments...'" 7

For rest of article and footnotes and documentation see this link. http://www.wpaag.org/International%20Bbaccalaureate%20Program%201.htm

Homosexuals Give 138 Corporations 100% Rating - Conservatives Can Make Good Use of the List!

The report by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC - advocates for homosexual issues) for 2006 was released in September.  A top rating of 100 percent was given to 138 major U.S.  corporations.  Last year there were 101 who earned the 100 percent rating.   The report said the total companies reaching the top score was up by 10 times in just four years.

The HRC purposely uses the corporate list to coerce other businesses to cooperate with the homosexual agenda.  But HRC has also done the work for Christian conservatives by providing a list that will allow them to avoid doing business with these companies that have the 100% rating and give their business to those who resist the homosexual intimidation. (See list at this link)
AFA announced a one-year boycott of Ford last year after they reneged on a promise to remain neutral on social issues like homosexuality and announced that they intended to value all people regardless of sexual orientation.  Many conservative and Christian organizations joined AFA and just recently Ford announced some plants were being closed and they did not expect to see a profit for several years.

Christians can make a difference.  There are far more of us than there are homosexuals.  In 2004 CNN reported that 4% of voters identified themselves as gay, lesbian, or bisexual. In comparison there were 29% of voters who identified themselves as born again Christians who regularly participated in the life of their churches. The homosexuals are just working in the political process at least 10 to 100 times harder than the Christians.  A much higher percentage of homosexuals vote than do conservative Christians.

Some of the corporations need to be rewarded  for standing up to the homosexual pressure. The following three obtained a zero score because they do not offer the same benefits to employees choosing an alternative lifestyle as those with traditional lifestyles.
Exxon-Mobil, Meijer Inc., and Perot Systems

Other companies given lower scores for their unwillingness to sign onto the "gay" agenda include:Reebok, Northwest Airlines, The Men's Wearhouse. J.C. Penney, Abercrombie & Fitch, Nissan, Dun & Bradstreet, Gallup, Ben & Jerry's, Kroger, Progressive, Ball Corp., Cooper Tire, Dow Jones, Circuit City, Radio Shack, and Toys 'R' Us
For this entire article and the listing of 138 corporations who received the 100% rating by the homosexual advocates, see this link.

This article was taken from Arkansas Family Coalition (formerly AFA) newsletter by Bob Hester, Director. Printed by permission.

Monday, November 20, 2006

American Family Association Calls for Two Day Boycott of Wal-Mart!



***UPDATE-- AFA SAYS WAL-MART HAS AGREED TO THEIR DEMANDS-- BOYCOTT CALLED OFF!***

We have asked our supporters not to shop at Wal-Mart or Sam's Club this coming Friday or Saturday. Thus far nearly 400,000 families have agreed not to shop at Wal-Mart on those days. We suggest you shop with your local merchants.

Here is why we are asking you not to shop at Wal-Mart or Sam's Club this Friday or Saturday:

* Wal-Mart gave $60,000 to homosexual group to support homosexual agenda in the workplace

* Wal-Mart made a generous donation to the Northwest Arkansas Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center

* Wal-Mart sells pro-homosexual items from their website

* Wal-Mart asks for, and receives, permission to join Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce

* Wal-Mart invites homosexual ad agency to headquarters for 2-day seminar to indoctrinate employees.

* Last March, Wal-Mart chose to promote "Brokeback Mountain" video over a top-selling family-oriented film. Wal-Mart began taking advance orders of the homosexual love movie, "Brokeback Mountain." A large display greeted customers when they walked through the front doors of the store. "Brokeback Mountain" was released the same day as best selling pro-family movie, "The Chronicles of Narnia" which Wal-Mart did not promote.

Lakeview: Judges Should Keep Control

The plantiffs in the Lakeview school funding case say that judges should keep the case open until sometime after the end of the upcoming legislative session. Though they acknowledge that the legislature has made a "good faith" effort to comply with court mandates, they say it is impossible to know if their efforts will produce the court's desired result until later.

I don't see what difference it makes. The court faked the legislature out last time by pretending to let go of the reins just before the last legislative session, then shamelessly picked them back up again after it was over. They could always do it again. But why would the courts pretend to let the legislature off the hook right before session?

I think I know. A regular session is the only time the legislature can refer a constitutional amendment to the people. If the ledge had been foreward-thinking and vigilent in the defense of it's authority, it would have referred a constitutional amemdment to the people which would have plainly said that the legislature, not the courts, determine the amount (and/or manner) of funding for education. Once upon a time, no such amendment was necessary, as most of us grew up being taught that the legislature was supposed to be the branch of government with the "power of the purse strings" anyway. These days uppity judges have disregarded that propriety, and legislatures have let them. The Court knows that regular legislative sessions are the one time in Arkansas that the ledge can strike back by referring an amendment to the people slapping down judicial over-reach.

Its not too late, legislature. You could still do it in 07. The court has a majority of bullies on it(excepting Gunter and Hannah, and possibly one of the new guys), and they are not going to quit taking your lunch money until you stand up to them.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Primary Challenge to Pryor and the Power of Fatherhood

New father, Bill Halter
Brummett had a column today pointing out how Beebe posed as a conservative to win. If you have a good personality, all a Democratic politician has to do is fake right on social issues (unfortunately, fiscal conservatism is not as popular) in order to get most Arkansans to feel comfortable with them. That is enough to get victory.

Such rules do not apply in the Democratic primary however. It is only a small subset of the population, and a doctrinaire liberal has the advantage- just so long as the general public does not pay too close attention. That allows the Democratic candidate to run left in the primary, then fake right in the general election. How can they get away with that? Easy. The media won't call them on it. They needn't worry about the "watchdogs" in the media alerting the public to the shift in positions. If the other guy tries to do the media's job and point out the incongruity, that same media is quick to label him a "negative campaigner".

All this brings me to the more interesting note in Brummett's article...

(continued- click SUNDAY below and scroll down for rest of article, or if sent here just scroll down)

Immigration By The Numbers


James S. Robb gives a very clear 14 minute video exposition of why the United States cannot continue our current level of immigration and remain a first world nation. This is well worth the 14 minutes. I had not considered reducing legal immigration to pre-1965 levels before this video. I am still not sure where I stand on that, but it defintely highlights the need to take the ILLEGAL component out of our country.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

A Call for a "State Guard"

N.Y. Governor George Pataki commends members of the South Carolina State Guard who assisted New York's State Guard at Ground Zero after 9/11.
***********************************************
I noticed two items in the news today. One is former Clinton FEMA director James Lee Witt calling for states and localities to buck up their own disaster preparedness programs, a tacit admission that the Federal Government cannot respond quickly and efficiently to distant disasters. Mr. Witt was particulary distressed at the possiblility of another major New Madrid fault earthquake. A repeat of the 1811 event would be a Katrina-sized disaster.

The other was Republican Governor Mike Huckabee making a strong case that it was private individuals, not the federal government, that did the most good in the critical hours and days after Katrina struck New Orleans.

One might argue that our National Guard is supposed to be available for such situations, but our efforts to "nation build" across the globe have left them an unreliable resource when disaster strikes- we don't know if they will even be on this continent, much less available to stop looting in Little Rock or the Delta. Even if they were, their mission has drifted away from disaster preparedness. They look more and more like a regular army reserve unit.

Twenty-seven states have "State Guards" or "Home Guards". These are not subject to Federal Call-up, but are available to the Governor or County Judges in accordance with state law.

I don't want our great state to wind up like many of the citizens of New Orleans, who were so used to the Feds rescuing them that they had no idea what to do when disaster struck. The people waited around helplessly for the government to rescue them, the city government waited for the State Government, and the State Government waited for the Federal government. It would be wise to prepare to take care of ourselves in such a situation rather than figure out who to blame afterward.

The Rape of Europe

This is from the desk of Paul Belien, who seems to be a writer of unusual clarity and power.
***********************************

The German author Henryk M. Broder recently told the Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant (12 October) that young Europeans who love freedom, better emigrate. Europe as we know it will no longer exist 20 years from now. Whilst sitting on a terrace in Berlin, Broder pointed to the other customers and the passers-by and said melancholically: “We are watching the world of yesterday.”

Europe is turning Muslim. As Broder is sixty years old he is not going to emigrate himself. “I am too old,” he said. However, he urged young people to get out and “move to Australia or New Zealand. That is the only option they have if they want to avoid the plagues that will turn the old continent uninhabitable.”

Many Germans and Dutch, apparently, did not wait for Broder’s advice. The number of emigrants leaving the Netherlands and Germany has already surpassed the number of immigrants moving in. One does not have to be prophetic to predict, like Henryk Broder, that Europe is becoming Islamic. Just consider the demographics. The number of Muslims in contemporary Europe is estimated to be 50 million. It is expected to double in twenty years. By 2025, one third of all European children will be born to Muslim families. Today Mohammed is already the most popular name for new-born boys in Brussels, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and other major European cities.

Broder is convinced that the Europeans are not willing to oppose islamization. “The dominant ethos,” he told De Volkskrant, “is perfectly voiced by the stupid blonde woman author with whom I recently debated. She said that it is sometimes better to let yourself be raped than to risk serious injuries while resisting. She said it is sometimes better to avoid fighting than run the risk of death.”

(continued- click "Saturday" below and scroll down for rest of story, or click the link to Paul Belien's desk above.)

Friday, November 17, 2006

School Spending Doubled in Last Ten Years: Now They Want More


This Demozette article covered many aspects of the education budget, including the Governor's decision to leave the "temporary" extra sales tax on beer to help pay for pre-school programs at a time when the state budget surples is over 800 million dollars. I am against pre-school programs, as I think the bias should be toward children under five being raised in families and not institutions, but whether you are for or against the program, fundng it through a beer tax is unjust. An unjust tax is when one group is taxed but the benefits go to another group. We should oppose such taxes on principle, otherwise the big-goverment types can just keep playing us off against one another until all of our pockets are looted.

But the most intriguing fact in the article was on total school spending. It has possibly doubled in the last ten years. The article reported total education revenue — from federal, state and local sources — in Arkansas has increased from $ 2. 2 billion in 1995-96 to $ 4 billion in 2004-05. Figures for the 05-06 year were not available, but it is logical to conclude that they were much higher.

The state courts have ordered the legislature to spend even more money on education- if the ledge had any grit or regard for the taxpayers they would tell them to take a hike- and I want you to remember that funding has essentially doubled in the last ten years already. Has your income doubled in that time? Will it double again over the next ten years? If not, the current pattern of growth in government spending is unsustainable. At some point, the government will demand every penny you make and more if current trends continue. We simply cannot sustain the current course. I wish we would elect leaders with the grit to change direction sooner rather than later.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Despite Bush Directive, Texas Court Says Death For Mexican National Who Raped and Murdered Teens


The Texas Supreme Court has ruled that President G. W. Bush has exceeded his Constitutional authority when he sent a memo directing state courts to comply with a world court ruling that would bar the U.S. from giving the death penalty to foreign nationals illegally in the U.S. who commit horrific crimes. There are currently 51 Mexican nationals on death row in the U.S..

The Texas court ruling stems from the case of Jose Ernesto Medillin, an illegal alien convicted for the brutal rape and murder of two teenage girls in 1993. Texas courts have ruled he should be executed. The World Court has ruled that U.S. courts should not execute any of the Mexican nationals on U.S. death rows. Mr. Bush has sided with the World Court with a memo directing state courts to comply with the World Court.

The Texas Supreme Court has decided that the Bush directive has stepped into state matters that are beyond his constitutional purview. But the issue is not concluded. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who is infamous for saying that Supreme Court rulings should be based on International Law rather than the U.S. Constitution exclusively, has warned that they may take the case back up- possibly also ruling that the state court must comply with the world court.

Rogers Mayor: Our Cops Will Enforce Immigration Law

Rogers Mayor Steve Womack has decided to move forward with a plan to get his police officers the training they need to enforce immigration law. The decision was made after a wave of drug crime and violent crime in the streets of Rogers committed by illegal aliens.

The story is here. The headline was "Hispanics see pitfalls with plan". Not really. The establishment paper had to look far and wide for anyone from any background who objected to the move. They finally found a hispanic guy who did not even live in Rogers to complain about it. The second Hispanic guy voiced some reservations about the plan, but spent most of his time talking about the ways Womack has worked with the Hispanic community.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Halter Makes Smooth Move

Lt. Governor elect Bill Halter has chosen former state Democratic State Party Chairman Ron "The Rotwieler" Oliver to be his Chief of Staff. Oliver was known for his savage verbal attacks on Republicans during his tenure as Chairman.

It looks from here like Halter has made a smooth move. There was a lot of tension between Oliver and the current Democratic Chairman Jason Willett. Until the recent election, many Democrats were having second thoughts about their decision to oust Oliver in favor of Willett. Their unease was heightened by Willett's aggressive spending and expansion into NWA. But Willet's big gamble worked. It turned out to be the perfect election cycle to aggressively move into the GOP backyard. Thanks in part to Willett, there is now a lot more patronage for Democrats to pass around, and even Oliver benefits.

Halter actually owes Willett. Willett helped push Halter over the top in what was a close race until the Democratic Party of Arkansas jumped in with both feet with $250,000 worth of pro-Halter, anti-Holt ads. The logical assumption is that Halter is not doing this to betray Willett, but rather to bring both sides of the Democratic party together. Very shrewd if true. In Oliver, he gets a man that has grassroots Democratic connections all over the state. That is something that Halter currently lacks, but needs in a hurry if the rumours are true about a primary challenge to "bluedog" Democrat Mark Pryor in 06.

(continued- click "Wednesday" below and scroll down for rest of story)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Sen. Melquíades Rafael "Mel" Martínez to succeed Mehlman as RNC Boss

Some background bio on him can be found here. The corruption issues are clear enough there, but on his "conservative" positions you have to read betwen the lines. For example, while he says he is "strongly against abortion" he also says he would not "prosecute anyone for it", even if Roe were overturned. So how is that different at all from any Democrat who says that they are "personally" opposed to people butchering unwanted pre-borns but would not "legislate" it? Unless I am reading something wrong it is a classic pro-abortion position. Even if he wants the courts to overturn Roe, he still does not want to make abortion illegal. Can someone help me understand this any differently?

Oh, and his "tough line" on illegal immigration? Completely deceptive. He co-sponsored a bill that is amnesty in all but name. S.2611. This is the one that the House GOP stood tough on. Their illegal immigration bill did not have the de-facto amnesty in it that the Martinez bill did, and they would not give in. This time.

Dallas Suburb Joins HazeltonPA, Roger's Mayor

DALLAS BRANCH Texas, a suburb of Dallas, has just had its city counsel unanimously pass ordinances against landlords who rent to illeglas aliens, made English the town's official language, and authorized city police to check the immigration status of arestees.

Recently Hazelton PA passed a similar ordinance concerning renting to illegal aliens, and Rogers Mayor Steve Womack has made a similar proposal for that Northwest Arkansas city. The Hazelton ordinance is currently blocked by a federal judge, and a Dallas Branch city councilman has been quoted as saying "we passed this expecting to get sued".

News sources that are not pro-illegal are getting harder and harder to find. Big business interests, and that seems to include Ruppert Murdoch's FOX news give accounts that are decidely pro-illegal. Most of the time the public is stirred up it is media-driven hysteria. This time the media is doing everything they can to dampen an outraged public. For example, in the FOX story no reason is given for the city councils actions, but we know from our experience in Rogers that half of all homicides in the city are committed by illegal aliens. Many of these murders have been extremely public and brutal.

I feel sympathy for two groups in this situation. One is property owners who must take special care to learn about immigration documents to rent to legal immigrants and the other is the legal immigrants. My guess is that many if not most of the legal immigrants want the illgeal ones gone. They are giving the legal immigrants a bad name- with the assistance of the establishment media who keep lumping the two groups togehter in their communications.

The willful refusal of our national government and officials to fulfill their Oath of Office is the reason we have this problem. State and local governments would not be forced to take these measures if the feds were not bought and paid for by corporate interests that want the cheap labor flowing. Unfortunately, most parts of our state don't yet see the need to make this a high-priority issue- witness the recent election results. I hope that it does not take a string of brutal murders in the streets of THEIR town committed by illegal aliens before they wake up.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

College President Asks for Even More

Here is an article that details how the University of Arkansas is paying a Buddhist Monk to come teach courses on Buddhism. The fellow and one of his students have been provided taxpayer funded space in Old Main to perform a Buddhist ritual. They are making a "mandala", and elaborate and beautiful glass circle that is constructed in an elaborate and time consuming manner. There is also a picture. It really is a beautiful work of art regardless of your faith.

After it is constructed, the pagan professer will then smash the elaboratley-constructed work of art as a symbol for the impermanance of life. I'll stick with a religious tradition that celebrates life and has a bias toward human progress- we leave our stained glass windows unbroken and try to spend our days in more optimistic and productive efforts than making and then smashing art. The gross economic dispartiy in Christian-tradition vs. Buddhist/Hindu-tradition societies is not surprising.

The college chancellor who has helped fund this effort is not wasting any of his time either. He has come out today calling for the legislature to give him more funding. This is right after they won a bond issue that will distrubte an additional $150 million to the state's higher ed system on top of the money that they already get. Their bond-issue victory was won with the help of the establishment media of this state. They printed article after article in which the colleges made their case for the bond money but in those articles refused to print even a single sentence from anyone who was against the measure.

The fellow, Alan White, wants to expand facilites, I guess so that we can provide more college graduates to other states since we don't have an economy big enough to use more here. He knows that few people are left that would be willing to pay their own money to attend his institution, but he wants increased funding for "needs scholarships" so that they can do so with other people's money. Say you need more money for buildings to expand capacity, while at the same time ask for more money to pay people to come and expand enrollement. Hmmmm.

I don't have what it takes to be a college big-wig, which more and more looks like greed, nerve, and a vast sense of entitlement to the earnings of my fellow citizens.

Will State GOP Listen to Brummett or Dobson?

Focus on the Family President Dr. James Dobson has some advice on how to fix the Republican party, and so does acerbic liberal columnist John Brummett.

A Washington Post article on the weakening of the Evangelical vote for the GOP quoted three well known Christian Conservative leaders on the reasons for the erosion of support:

"Evangelical Christians are "fed up with the Republican leadership, particularly in the House," said the Rev. Richard Land, head of the public policy arm of the 16 million-member Southern Baptist Convention. "They're disgusted that Republicans came to Washington and failed to behave any better than Democrats once they got their snouts in the trough."

Roberta Combs, chairman of the Christian Coalition, said responsibility for the GOP's loss of the House and Senate "goes right back to the leadership, the corruption among Republicans."

And James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, issued a statement saying that "many of the Values Voters of '04 simply stayed at home this year" because the Republican Party has "consistently ignored the constituency that put them in power.""

The always-colorful Brummett had this to say, "Here’s my advice: Look outside Northwest Arkansas for your candidates. Look outside the right-wing churches. Look outside people with toxic political names such as Hutchinson and DeLay. Give people more than pictures of gay people kissing. Quit lying about my columns. Quit doing smears and start talking about how to make government better from a fiscally conservative and reform-oriented point of view."

You know John, as long as activist judges and militant homosexual activists are attempting to re-define marriage to accomodate their deviancy, you can expect it to be an issue. If they quit trying to force it down our throats, we could- and would be delighted to - quit talking about it. But I agree with you in one sense, OUR FEAR BUTTON IS BROKEN. Republicans can't just ignore their base for four years, govern in a corrupt manner, and then expect to get our votes just because "the other guys are worse". They can't just keep hitting the fear button. They have to govern well.

Time will tell if GOP leaders in Arkansas and elsewhere will listen to the John Brummett's of this world, the James Dobson's of this world, or will take the best advice of both.

24 Month Rule Scrapped: Our Guard Units May Be Sent Again

FOX News is reporting that the Pentagon is "reinterpreting" the rule by which President Bush sent national guard units to Iraq. Their new position is that under the authority by which Bush ordered a call-up of the Guard and Reserve after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, troops could be mobilized an unlimited number of times as long as each mobilization is no longer than 24 consecutive months.

Until now, Pentagon officials have interpreted that rule as 24 cumulative months.

In theory, the new interpretation means a unit could be sent to Iraq for 24 months, sent home for a few months, then redeployed for another 24 month stint.

Generals routinely make contingincy plans to send units that they latter cancel, so it is not certain they will be called up again, but the 39th Brigade here in Arkansas is one of the top units mentioned. There are about 3,500 men in the unit. This time, indications are the whole unit will be sent. Last time, smaller parts of it were sent in.

The lines between Army Reserve and National Guard have been obliterated by the demands of our foreign interventions. Perhaps states need to create another organization that is not subject to federal call-up in order to deal with the things that the National Guard was orignially supposed to deal with: riot, insurrection, natural disaster. If the National Guard is so often gone, perhaps we need a State Guard or Home Guard that we can count on to be here.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Dobson: "The Big Tent Will Turn Into A Three Ring Circus"

Focus on the Family Chairman James C. Dobson, Ph.D., issued the following statement today on the results of Tuesday's election:

"Laura Ingraham said it best. When Congressional Republicans wait until the First of October to begin reaching out to their base, they are destined to lose. That was the GOP's downfall. They consistently ignored the constituency that put them in power until it was late in the game, and then frantically tried to catch up at the last minute. In 2004, conservative voters handed them a 10-seat majority in the Senate and a 29-seat edge in the House. And what did they do with their power? Very little that Values Voters care about.

"Many of my colleagues saw this coming. I said in an interview with U.S. News and World Report shortly after the 2004 elections, "If Republicans in the White House and in Congress squander this opportunity, I believe they will pay a price for it in four years---or maybe in two." Sadly for conservatives, that in large measure explains what happened on Tuesday night. Many of the Values Voters of '04 simply stayed at home this year.

"The unfortunate thing is that Republican leaders still don't appear to get it. Sen. Arlen Spector, R-Pa, said on Wednesday that the election results represented a 'seismic earthquake' and that his party must become 'a lot more progressive and a lot less ideological.' Dick Armey emerged from four years in the wilderness to blame conservative Christians for Tuesday's defeat. They were, he said, 'too involved' with the party. He can't be serious! Someone should tell him that without the support of that specific constituency, John Kerry would be President and the Republicans would have fallen into a black hole in '04. In fact, that is where they are headed if they continue to abandon their pro-moral, pro-family and pro-life base. The big tent will turn into a three-ring circus.

"Republican leaders in Congress during this term apparently never understood, or they forgot, why Ronald Reagan was so loved and why he is considered one of our greatest presidents. If they hope to return to power in '08, they must rediscover the conservative principles that resonated with the majority of Americans in the 1980s -- and still resonate with them today. Failure to do so will be catastrophic. Values Voters are not going to carry the water for the Republican Party if it ignores their deeply held convictions and beliefs.

"To quote Dr. Ken Hutcherson, 'When Republicans act like Democrats they lose, and when Democrats act like Republicans, they win.' And therein lies the lesson of '06."

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Conservatives: Prepare to be pushed further left by State GOP


I am amazed. I have come to expect the secular wing of the GOP to blame the Christian wing for every failure that comes along, but the lengths to which they are willing to ignore "discordant feedback from reality" to hear only the message that they want to hear has been taken to new and fantastical heights.

Asked in this John Lyon column about the poor GOP showing this year, Republican Party of Arkansas Director Clint Reed said this, "We must listen to the message that the voters sent us and provide real reform within our party. We must be an inclusive party that is not relegated to fractional or regional ideologues,".

"Inclusiveness" is, of course, a well-known code word for the faction of the GOP that favors abortion, amnesty for illegals, and a gay-friendly Republican party. It can be accurately translated to mean "shut up all you pro-lifers, border control nuts, and all you bible crazies who want to keep social conservatism as important issues".

Those are the "idealouges" Reed says they need to get away from. In rejecting an ideology, Reed comes to perfect agreement with former President Clinton, as we discussed in this article. Idealouges in this case are simply people with ideals. Where do people with real belief systems go when the leaders of both parties reject ideals? Where do we go when they both reject standards? When both are committed only to saying and doing whatever think will help them "win"?

The reason the GOP lost is as plain as day, and it wasn't because our state candidates were "too conservative". It is because a dismissively arrogant President Bush and a corrupt overspending GOP congress were like an anchor around their necks.

Indeed, the most conservative of the lot, Jim Holt, got the most votes, even though he got zero help, and I mean zero, from the state party. Meanwhile, the Democratic party realized that the Lt. Governor's race was the only one they could lose, so they dumped $250,000 into ads assuring people that Halter was a good guy- and until that point many had questions- and that Holt was a terrible guy. The Republican party lifted not one finger in response. That was when the polls showed movement for Halter. Because the money totals for the Lt. Governor's race were so much smaller than the Governor's race, a smaller infusion of cash would have had a proportionally bigger effect, but that help never came.

Instead of making the no-brainer decision (that the democrats made) of throwing weight into the closest state-wide race, the GOP focused entirely on the Governor's race, and did so by constantly emphasizing Asa Hutchinson's ties to the Bush administration. They called even more attention to the very anchor that was around the necks of all GOP candidates, even those that had disagreements with Bush. That was a strategic blunder of immense proportions. It only adds insult to injury to hear them say that, rather than their own strategic blunders, conservatives are to blame for the election results.

Senator Bisbee Gets Knifed in the Back AGAIN

A year or so ago Senator Dave Bisbee (Rep., Rogers) thought he had a good chance to be President -Pro Tem of the Senate. That is the person who by tradition actually runs the day-to-day operations of that body. Bisbee had half the Democrats in the Senate minus one ready to vote him in. By tradition, the longest serving member of the Senate gets the job, and Bisbee fit the bill. He also had taken pains not to offend his Democratic colleagues. Bisbee thought he would have the support of all eight republican senators, assuring him the post.

He was shocked to discover that half the republicans, including party chairman Gilbert Baker, had made a secret deal with a group of Senate Democrats that even the liberal media refers to ominiously as "The Brotherhood". NWA Senators stuck with Bisbee, but half of the eight Republican Senators voted for the democrat. Bisbee lost 18-17 to fairly conservative Democrat Jack Critcher.

Wednesday saw Bisbee take another blow. There was an organizational meeting of the senate that day. An unnamed senator popped a "rule change" on the Senate at this meeting. The rule change was that, rather than seniority, that the Senate co-chair of the powerful Joint Budget committee be determined by a vote of the Senate. The effect was to allow The Brotherhood to bypass Sen. Dave Bisbee, and put Republican Sen. Shawn Womack in his place. The Brotherhood prevailed, 21-14. The newcomers to the Senate must have detected which way the wind was blowing and jumped on board with the Brotherhood, making their numbers even stronger.

It had to be a Republican as co-chair, so why the piling on Bisbee? We don't know, and are open to ideas.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A Time of Peace

"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven....A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak. A time to love, and a time to hate. A time of war, and a time of peace." Ecclesiastes Chapter 3

Today is a day like every other day, a day when the universe is designed to test us. The easy thing to do and the right thing to do are seldom the same thing. For the sake of our own souls and our God who has saved us, let's determine to do the right thing.

Congratulations to those who have been elected to public office last night. Even to those I opposed I say congratulations. That includes Mike Beebe, Bill Halter, Dustin McDaniel, and Charlie Daniels on the Democratic side, and Mark Martin on the Republican side in the state house.

I am mindful of the admonition in Romans to "honor the King" and those sent by him. I will obey the command of the Apostle Paul in 1st Timothy to "pray for kings and governor's and those in authority". That I will do, in the hopes that prayer will not only change the situation to suit my will, but that such prayer will change me according to God's will.

All this is not to say that our swords will never cross again. Should they rule in ways that violate God's standards for civil government our duty will be to stand against those policies even as our duty today is to honor those whom God has set in office. And the honoring; that is our first duty today and likely in the future. God has given, for better or for worse, the people of Arkansas the leaders they have chosen for themselves. Congratulations to them. May they rule in wisdom, and integrity.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Election Day Coverage: LIVE THREAD

UPDATE 8:30 PM***It looks bad, with the top two GOP spots with 36%, but NO VOTES HAVE YET COME IN FROM THE 3RD DISTRICT. All votes reported as of 8:30 are from the other congressional districts.

Please post results on this thread as you hear them come in.

The Secretary of State will post results at www.arelections.org but we have been warned that news organizations will beat them to the punch in most cases.

BEST SITES I HAVE SEEN, WITH MORE DIRECT LINKS, no particular order.

KATV****KNWA ******FOX16 **KAIT***KFSM***

Election Day Coverage

UPDATE: Let's continue with reports on turnout. So far trends are positive for conservative areas. A live election thread with links to the best sources for election results will appear at or around 7:30.

The Secretary of State's office estimated Monday that nearly 10 percent of Arkansas' 1.66 million registered voters cast ballots in the state's 15-day early voting period. They estimated that 55 percent of eligible voters would vote in this election. This is Charlie Daniels you are talking about here, so the reliablility of his numbers are suspect, but assuming he is close, only 18% of the vote was early voting. Many of us were expecting 25% or more to vote early. Either this is going to be a light-turnout election or a disproportionate percentage of the vote (~82%) will be cast on election day.

We would like reports from the field. Please tell us your location and your impression about how heavy turnout is. If you have any sense of who is up or down, that too.

We can have a live election thread later this evening. No one's full-coverage will start before 8PM, most not until nine, so that is when we should start.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Forth Eorlinglass, and Fear No Darkness!

........................... Rohan prepares to charge.

Conservative Christians, tomorrow is election day. I will not tell you that our national leaders have always served us faithfully. I will not tell you that any candidate or slate of candidates is perfect, or even close. If you wait for that to do your duty then your duty will remain forever undone. Duty. Our duty is not to any political party or mere political leader, but to our families and our homes; to elect the best leaders possible. To resist turning leadership of this state over to those who will not regard the life of the unborn, nor your claims on your own earnings. Those who think you and yours are not capable of running your own lives apart from their wisdom, which is apart from God's wisdom. For those who claim the name of God when it suits their purposes, but then ignore His Word when it comes time to rule. If you would spare your friends and family that, then vote it down.

In addition to the very real failings of those whom we entrusted with power, the enemy has done all they can to convince us that the battle is hopeless. That it is already lost. This they try every two years. After telling us for months that it was over, now they are reporting a late "surge" of conservative voters. This is so they will not be wholly discredited once the results of the contest before us prove much closer than they claimed.

After the battle, we can return to talk about what might be done to set our house in better order next time, but for now, our duty is to show up and vote right and encourage all we know to do the same. This is no hour for faintness of heart. Sound the horn, draw the sword, ride forth into battle. And fear no darkness.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Congratulations Asa, Beebe Stuck With Newspaper Endorsements

John Brummett wrote today, "Newspaper endorsements of political candidates normally matter maybe to a half-dozen people. Five of them only pay attention to make sure they vote the opposite way. I'm the sixth. ".

Congratulations to Asa Hutchinson. The two largest partisan rags in the state have endorsed your opponent. The larger of the two, the Democrat-Gazette, also opposed the marriage amendment, wants more school consolidation, and was fervently in favor of taxpayer funded college scholarships for illegal aliens.

The Demozette did have one issue they were populist on: For years they have admonished politicians in Arkansas for failing to remove the sales tax on groceries. But their hypocrisy knows no bounds. Today they passed over Asa, who wants the sales tax on groceries ended completely and without excuse, for a man who wants to wait and see on eliminating the grocery tax- Mike Beebe.

That is the Democrat-Gazette. The other paper is the even more liberal "Morning News". They will occasionally endorse the more conservative candidate for President. That is a race they cannot change the outcome on. They may sometimes endorse the conservative in such a race in order to better fool people into thinking they are "moderate" in the closer races where they CAN effect the outcome. Like the Governor, Lt. Governor, and even now the Attorney General's races here in Arkansas.

But in truth I think this goes beyond liberal-conservative. It is more about who the mega-businesses in this state can count on to help them even at the expense of the average citizen or smaller business. It is about who will be most lax on polluters, who will authorize the biggest utility increases, who will let the big guys play by one set of rules while the little guys are made to play by another. Mega-corporate Arkansas knows it has a man they can count on in Mike Beebe. They are not so sure about Asa Hutchinson. My guess is they are afraid he will treat everybody equally under the law- and they don't donate big bucks to be treated equally.

As far as the Brummett column goes, he spent the rest of it doing an about-face; talking about what a blow it was for Asa Hutchinson to lose the endorsements of those two papers. The papers are owned by guys connected to the mega-corp side of things. The fact that they trust Asa less than Beebe means that we can trust him more.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Halter gets a church that doesn't believe in God to endorse him

Anne Johansen sent this email out:
 
Today Halter issued a press release announcing religious leaders' support for Bill Halter and listed 10 Reverends.   Only one reverend's church was identified -  a Unitarian Universalist Minister.  Two paragraphs of the five paragraph press release contained his quotes.  The denomination or church of the other ministers were not named.
 
Does anyone else find this humorous (but sad)  – that Halter gets a minister from a church that is known for not believing in God to endorse him.   That's right, in case you are not aware, according to their own websites, most Unitarian Universalist church members do not believe in God or a supernatural supreme Being, do not believe in the Bible, do not believe in heaven, or life after death and do not believe Jesus Christ is a supernatural being.  Many of their ministers are self ascribed atheists.
 
In fact, sources from their own websites report that most Unitarian Universalists do not consider themselves Christians, and  Unitarian Universalists have been rejected for membership in the American  National Council of Churches. See this link for documentation:   For more documentation see links at the end of the article.
 
Don't confuse Unitarian Universalists with the Biblical Unitarians. Halter's press releases specifically said the pastor endorsing Halter was a Unitarian Universalist minister. Biblical Unitarians do believe in God, Bible, Deity of Jesus Christ, etc.
 
There was nothing in Halter's  press release to indicate that any of the religious reverends supporting Halter were Catholic. Yet Halter graduated from a Catholic high school, was married in a typical Catholic ceremony last January and according to his website  is a member of the Catholic church.  Is it fair to assume that Halter's philosophy on abortion and perhaps gay issues may prevent any Catholics from giving him public support?
 
Halter claims he opposes homosexual marriage and civil unions, but he married in a church this past January that conducts ceremonies for gay and lesbian couples, not called marriage since the law does not allow gay marriages.  For more information and documentation on this fact, see www.whoisbillhalter.com. You will find a great deal of  information on that site that will probably interest you.
 
For several articles to document the facts about the Unitarian church, see these links.
 
http://uufnorthiowa.org/100questions/c1.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unitarianism
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unitarian_Universalism
http://everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=352840
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unitarianism
http://uufnorthiowa.org/100questions/c1.htm
http://www.engagingamerica.org/ajc/religPartners/index.asp?partnerID=134

Anne Johansen

Halter's Hypocrisy/only 5% of contributions from Arkansas

My letter to editor published in Searcy Daily Citizen November 1, 06

Letter to Editor:

Bill Halter for Lt. Governor came back to Arkansas to buy an office after living out of state for the last 25 years. Not only has he put $1.17 million of his own money into his campaign, but only 3 percent ($34,000) of his donations came from Arkansans through July (source: Democrat Gazette listing of $2,000 contributions for all candidates).

Halter received $684,000 in $2,000 chunks from California, Massachusetts and other liberal states with only a couple from surrounding states. (About half came from California.)

Even when Halter gave back $72,000 of the money raised for the Governor’s race, he still received only 3 percent of his money from Arkansas through July. Emails began to circulate around the state about this issue, and lo and behold, all of Halter’s out-of-state donations suddenly dried up. In his Aug. 1-31 report, Halter received $75,500 from Arkansas, more than double received from Arkansas in all the other months combined. Halter’s Arkansas contributions were immediately posted on the liberal Arkansas Times blog. What hypocrites these guys are!

Through August, Halter has raised a whopping 5 percent from Arkansas. AP reported Halter raised a combined total of more than $1.9 million through July, and he has received a little more than $100,000 from Arkansans altogether, which equals about 5 percent.

WOW! Halter surely qualifies for the Guiness Book of Records for getting the most out-of-state contributions for a state candidate.

That’s all Arkansas needs — a liberal California Democrat buying the Lt. Governor office.

Debbie Pelley

Clinton Opposes Ideals

Bill Clinton was in Jonesboro yesterday. The article was short, but here is how Clinton ended it: "
This year's balloting comes down to a clear choice between common sense politics and extremism, he said.

"If you're an ideologue, you have to live in a state of denial. To me, you have to live in a reality-based world," Clinton said. "To the ideologues evidence is irrelevant and reason is a waste of time. What I see all around the country is that people want to get away from ideology."
"

An ideology is an integrated system of thought about life or human culture. An idealogue CAN be defined as an idealist, or it can be defined as someone who adheres to an integrated system of thought. The kind of integration necessary for logical consistency. It does not surprise me that a man who can stand with his wife on the steps of a church with a large Bible under his arm on Easter Sunday and hours later get oral sex from an intern under the Oval Office desk would be strongly opposed to "logical consistency" and "integrated systems of thought". Clinton is the King of Compartmentalization. He feels threatened by people with integrity.

Integrity is defined as "unimpared; a firm adherence to a code, esp. of moral or artistic values; undivided." Bill Clinton has divided his mind. You can't have integrity without a moral code, that is to say, an ideaology. Clinton has made every compromise you can imagine to get where he is, and it bothers him that some people are not willing to.

Or maybe Clinton is an idealouge too, but his idealogy is the protection, advancement, and glorification of Bill Clinton. To him, someone who is not willing to lie and cheat to get ahead is "not realistic". But the man who can't even settle on "what the meaning of is is" cannot be trusted to define reality for the rest of us. Reality is that you can get a shortcut to power if you spin, threaten, twist, bribe, and tell people what they want to hear even if you know it is not true. Even idealists know that. But the person of integrity will not take "power" if the price to get it is the corruption of ones own soul.

Someday, when the terrible price for believing foolishness has made itself known, we can only hope that people will seek out idealogues as rulers, for those are the only kind of people capable of governing honestly and consistently. The rest, whose only idealogy is to make yourself look good no matter what the long term costs, will lead us to ruin.

The truth is that our political system, including much of the media, does hate and distrust those with a firm ideaology. That is because people with an ideaology are too hard to manipulate. Our rulers would prefer that our emotions, not our ideas, control our lives. That way they can simply have two cults of personality, one the Bush cult and the other the Clinton cult, who can be swayed and manipulated completely apart from policy. At that point, they can do anything they want to us. Clinton could be against policy X one day, and Bush for it, and the cultists of the two would rail at one another. The following year, they could switch positions and the same people would still rail at one another, defending the policies they previously attacked when their champion opposed it.

Now more than ever, we need an idealogy. We need a system of connected thought that gives integrity to public policy. Let's come back after this election is over and talk about what form that idealogy should take.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Holt Press Releasse - Judicial Activism/ N.J. Court Decision and Lakeview

Subject: Senator Holt Believes Judicial Activism Has Reached a Crisis Point – Where Does Halter Stand on this Issue?
 
The recent New Jersey Supreme Court Decision unanimously ruled that the state Legislature must create same-sex marriage or civil unions within 180 days.  This ruling  brings into focus an issue that is a fundamental aspect of Senator Holt's platform – judicial activism.  The courts are taking away our freedom in chunks, and Senator Holt believes that the first responsibility of a government official is to  protect the freedom of  citizens.
 
The New Jersey decision is quite similar to the situation in Arkansas when the Supreme Court ordered the legislators to produce laws  to provide a suitable and adequate  education - according to the court's perception. The New Jersey Court says  the legislators must create a law that is suitable to protect homosexual rights -  as the court perceives those rights.  Three of the seven judges actually wanted to order the legislators to create a same- sex marriage law rather than just a civil unions law, so that will  probably come later.
 
Senator Holt's opponent has ridiculed him for advocating a constitutional amendment to keep the Arkansas Supreme Court from superseding the legislature's authority over educational decisions in Arkansas.  Since Halter has said he is opposed to homosexual marriage, would he ridicule any legislator in New Jersey  for proposing a constitutional amendment to protect traditional marriage and prevent civil unions as he has ridiculed  Holt for protecting educational freedom in Arkansas. Or would he be willing to "defy the courts" (as Halter's party has accused Senator Holt of doing)  and propose an amendment to the constitution to protect marriage?     
 
Even though Arkansas has passed a marriage protection amendment, the Supreme Court  could  force legislators  to include all types of homosexual material in the schools under the guise of  hate crime laws, sexual orientation, and other related issues. 

To read rest of the article click on Comment 1 below.

Quid Pro Quo?

It looks like Mike Beebe has dumped $230,000 into the Democratic party of Arkansas, who is running commercials on behalf of Lt. Governor candidate Bill Halter. Halter intially challenged Beebe in the Democratic primary for Governor, but later switched races. Halter then won the nomination from four other Democrats in the field. Speculation is rife that this was a payback for switching races. In addition, it's illegal. A candidate can't give over 2K to the party until an election is over. Here is the code...

§ 7-6-203. Contributions - Limitations - Acceptance or solicitation - Use as personal income - Disposition.

(h)(1) Within thirty (30) days following the end of the month in which the general election is held, a candidate shall turn over surplus campaign funds to either:
(A) The Treasurer of State for the benefit of the General Revenue Fund Account of the State Apportionment Fund;
(B) An organized political party as defined in § 7-1-101 or a political party caucus of the General Assembly, the Senate, or the House of Representatives;
(C) A nonprofit organization which is exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; or
(D) The contributors to the candidate's campaign.
(2)(A) If an unopposed candidate agrees not to solicit further campaign contributions by filing an affidavit declaring such an agreement, the candidate may dispose of any surplus campaign funds prior to a general election as soon as the time has passed to declare an intent to be a write-in candidate pursuant to § 7-5-205.

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Warning: It can be dangerous to hold your breath waiting for the establishment media to report a story on Democratic lawbreaking. All available air time must be filled with continuing Mark Foley and now Ted Haggard coverage!

Huckabee: Beebe Supporter Trying to Revise History

In the bad old days of one-party rule in Arkanas, Democratic Senator Nick Wilson and pals passed a bill that would make Wilson cronies tons of cash by taking money that was meant to help disadvantaged children. New Governor Mike Huckabee looked at the way the bill was structured and smelled a rat. He vetoed the bill. His veto was over-ridden with the help of influential then-Senator Mike Beebe. Sure enough, the deal was dirty. The local Democrats would not prosecute Wilson and company, but the Feds would and did.

Fast forward about a decade. The issue in the Governor's race is "did Mike Beebe turn a blind eye to corruption in order to gain more power within the Senate?" His reputation was one of knowing everything going on at the Capitol. If then outsider Huckabee could smell a rat in the legislation, why couldn't Beebe? Recently, Beebe supporters have offered some new excuses for Beebe's old actions. Huckabee called them out on one story today:

Huckabee said, “I was shocked to read the comments supposedly attributed to the Director of DFA that the reason for vetoing the Nick Wilson bill in 1997 was its connection to the budget of the Governor’s Mansion. While I realize that Mr. Weiss is a contributor and supporter of the Democrat nominee and is free to support the candidate of his choice, he is not free to rewrite history.

That bill was vetoed because of the way it would have set up the program with a process that would lend itself to funneling money to a process not subject to normal procedures. The Wilson bill had stink written all over it, I vetoed it, and Mr. Beebe helped lead the effort to override the veto as a favor to his friends in the Senate and without regard to the reasons for which the bill was vetoed. Beebe was not implicated in any of the scandal of making money off this scam, but to say he didn't help his pals in the Senate get the bill passed including helping override a veto because "pals and politics" were more important than propriety is simply absurd."

Asa Hutchinson also has some questions for AG Beebe concerning the events surrounding the bill and the veto-override. Click FRIDAY below and scroll down for those, or if sent straight here, just scroll down.

Proof It's Close: Watch the Presidents


When I was in the Navy, you could always tell where the critical points on the globe were, because that is where we would send the Aircraft Carriers. Those who think that the Democrats are going to run away with the Governor's race should notice where both parties are sending the biggest guns they have. It's right here in Arkansas.

Impeached former President Bill Clinton is in Jonesboro today. The area used to be solid Democrat Country, but can now be considered a swing area of the state. There are a lot of places he could be for the Democrats, but he is there to support Mike Beebe for Governor. In an interesting side note, there is no mention in any of the news accounts that he is there for any other candidate. Odd that Bill Halter worked for Clinton for years, and yet Clinton seems to be avoiding him.

But Clinton is from Arkansas. It is perhaps only natural that he make a stop in the Natural State. The real proof this race is close comes from the other side. Can anyone honestly tell me that Karl Rove would send President George Bush to Benton County the day before the election if this was not a close race? That is right, Bush is coming, of all places in America, here the day before the election. That tells me that the smartest people in this business believe that this race is still in play. It also tells me that there are quite a few undecided votes in NWA.

Are they move-ins, disgruntled conservatives, soccer moms? I don't know. I just know that both sides are setting up the biggest of earned media events they can right here. It's close. Don't doubt it.

He Won't Stop Spinning, So I Won't Stop Telling You About It

Just when I think I can stop writing about the house district 87 race, Martin goes over the top again. A Martin sympathizer asked me if I wasn't "picking" on Martin. Actually, I was almost protecting Martin in the sense that I had this sound file of him for almost a year, and I sat on it. In the audio he makes an emotional (to say the least) if not well-reasoned case for his vote to provide taxpayer funded scholarships to persons who are illegally in this country. He says that God led him to vote for the bill. It was a sad and scary performance.

But still I sat on it. It was not until he dishonestly claimed in this Family Council Voter Guide that he was AGAINST such scholarships that I came forward. If there is one thing I can't stand it's a politician who is always using the name of Jesus, but is more than willing to lie, but unwilling to admit they were wrong. I can't stand it. Let judgement begin with the House of God.

Then he came up with a new story for the NWA Times. He says he voted for the bill because the people against it were being ugly and making "security threats" against the sponsor. That is about as stupid a reason as I have ever heard to vote for a bad bill. At least I thought I was done. If he would quit telling stories, I could quit reporting on it with a clean conscience.

But no! The spin continues. Yesterday in a Laura Kellums column he again asserted his moral superiority over those who were against the scholarships. He again claimed that was why he voted for a bill he was really against. Listen to the audio from last year and you will not hear that as a part of his rationale. Instead, he talks like a man who genuinely supported the bill. Mark Martin seems to be incapable of saying the words "I was wrong". Instead, he is willing to concoct all kinds of stories to not only rationalize his vote but also cast himself as morally superior to those who simply want to keep the government out of their pockets when it comes to paying for scholarships for illegal aliens.