The Minnesota Grizzly Bear

Roaring about life since 2009

What are tea parties, anyway? (WARNING:rant)

I honestly can’t fully express my confusion and anger at this story.  What the hell are these Tea Parties anway?  When I was supporting Ron Paul’s presidential campaign in 2007-2008, we invented the concept of a “moneybomb” and one was on the anniversary of the Boston Tea Party, thus beginning the “tea party” imagery.  How it went beyond that and became some neoconservative pawn is well beyond me. 

These people are actually Tea Partiers running AGAINST Ron Paul.  What the hell?  The Tea Parties STARTED as an outgrowth of grassroots Ron Paul supporters!  Trust me, I know, I was there.  I was against government before it was cool among conservatives, i.e. during the Bush years.  And guess what?  We started a grassroots organization before these come-lately “Tea Partiers,” it’s called CAMPAIGN FOR LIBERTY.  WE HELD A CONVENTION IN MINNEAPOLIS AT THE SAME TIME AS THE FAILED REPUBLICAN CONVENTION.  TRUST ME, I KNOW, I WAS THERE.  Why was I there and not the Republican National Convention?

Because I’m a conservative.

Paul, the Gulf Coast congressman whose 2008 presidential run excited libertarians nationwide, even though he didn’t get much traction overall, is considered by many to be the “father of the Tea Parties.” But he has three opponents in the March Republican primary – more than he has faced in his past six primary campaigns combined

Newest target of tea partiers: Er, Ron Paul

According to this Rasmussen poll, 75% are angry at the current government’s policies.  So what does that mean?  Misdirected stupidity?  Congratulations to the reactionary knee-jerk morons who spew ignorant venom at those who were so excited and driven by Ron Paul’s message of conservative idealism.  These are the groups you can’t afford to lose for the future.  Young people.  The ones who can hold their own against an onslaught of college Democrats.

You think we’re all idiotic, hypocritical 9/11 truthers for supporting Congressman Paul?  Well congrats, we think you’re a crop of idiotic, hypocritical birthers for actually caring about that birth certificate garbage.

As much as I realize that party unity and conciliation is essential to future Republican victories this year, I just had to get this rant off my chest before I exploded.  The bizarrity of the universe has just been made manifest…

Have it good,

-Mike

February 9, 2010 Posted by | Politics, Republicans | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Today’s GOP News, 2/8/10

Here’s a few interesting stories of interest to Republicans in the news today:

South Carolina Republicans unite with tea party

NRCC expands Young Guns program

GOP Lacks Female Candidates

In this story from the MN Legislature (Amendments stall vote on eminent domain bill), my first reaction is this bill is an excellent idea designed to support private property rights, but without knowing more I’m hesitant to fully agree.  But if there is such a statute that makes it easier for companies to seize private property, getting rid of it would be a step forward for liberty.  Time for some research.

Have it good,

-Mike

February 8, 2010 Posted by | Economics, Minnesota, Republicans | , , , , | Leave a comment

MNgb’s picks – Monday, Feb. 8th

Here’s your GrizzlyNews and opinions from across the country, and Minnesota in particular for 2/8/10:

Unallotment Deadline Looming – an excellent blog post about the political ramifications of the unallotment debate and court case for the DFL in an election year (what is unallotment?).  I still can’t quite get over the difference between the MN Constitution and the Federal Constitution in terms of separation of powers, we seem to be a lot more fast and loose with the branch distinctions in Minnesota than the Feds are.  I tried to spur some discussion on the difference between unallotment and the line-item veto in my Precinct caucus group last week, and it actually developed more than I thought it would.  I even learned some interesting things about budget authority.  Neat.

Google to enlist NSA to help it ward off cyberattacks – Not too sure what to think about this story, honestly.  I’m swinging back and forth between “good for you Google, protect my privacy” and “OH GOD BIG BROTHER OMNIVEILLANCE AND CORPORATISM.”  You can see the problem that arises with a story like this, obviously.  I picked up the term Omniveillance from an article by Josh Blackman that I know I’ve mentioned before, yet it still comes back to haunt me with its insightfulness…

The inevitable fix for the deficit – Is the VAT really as “inevitable” as this article says?  I don’t think so, sorry.  The Value-Added Tax strikes me as another shadow way for government to hide its tax increases and to pay for its bloated expansion plans.  If the government taxes products at the manufacturing level, as the article states is the basic plan for a VAT, at what will the public focus its anger?  Business.  All business.  Since the businesses will have to price their goods higher due to skyrocketing input costs (thanks, VAT), the people will see the entity closest to them as the problem, and if businesses are the last link in the chain, then government gets off scot-free with the money.  Whether that rant is an argument against VAT I have no idea, but damnit do we really want bureaucracy as big as Europe’s as the future of America?  Look deep into your reservoir of knowlege and honestly answer that question.  I don’t.

Jobs push continues with $50M MN Senate proposal – Everyone repeat after me.  “Government spending does not create meaningful, long-term economic growth.”

To be continued, it’s time for class.

Have it good,

-Mike

February 8, 2010 Posted by | Economics, Minnesota, News | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Groups Ask for Amendment Review

Damnit, I’ve been saying this all along since this amendment was proposed and passed in Minnesota.  All that the MN constitutional amendment raising the sales tax will do is give the State Legislature another source of tax revenue to raid when they want to do something.  And it seems like the outdoor and environmental groups that supported the amendment are having some qualms with how the State is defining the language of the amendment:

“By changing the definitions you have spread out the purposes for which the constitutional amendment was dedicated to,” Ness said. “Our fear is that money will now be diverted to other types of projects other than what was intended by the vote of voters.”

Groups asking for review of outdoors amendment language

I thought from the beginning that the amendment was just a backdoor tax scam, a smokescreen to raise revenue for whatever the Legislature wants at the time.  By defining the amendment’s words as broadly as they have, it allows the state to do anything with the money.  Welcome to the world of legal elasticity, you’ll see a few familiar faces – over there is the Interstate Commerce Clause, ooh ooh and over there is General Welfare!

Maybe we would all be better off if we didn’t approve unnecessary amendments that the government could abuse in the first place?  Don’t give them words to broadly define by keeping laws simple and few.

Exactly.

Have it good,

-Mike

February 8, 2010 Posted by | Environment, Minnesota, Politics, Taxes | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

MN GOP Caucus attendance up from 2002

When I attended my precinct caucus on Tuesday I could definitely tell there were more people than last year, but nowhere near the numbers of 2008.  But apparently it was up over 20% from 2002 numbers, a year where MN saw a similar political situation as in 2010:

Eight years ago, just 15,862 Minnesotans cast their vote in the Republican gubernatorial straw poll. On Tuesday night, over 19,150 Gopher State residents voted in a precinct caucus GOP straw poll – an increase of 20.8 percent with 4,118 of 4,129 caucuses reporting as of late Wednesday evening.

Minnesota GOP Caucus Gubernatorial Straw Poll Voter Turnout Up Over 20 Percent from 2002

That’s definitely a good sign, but why the increase?  Even with the earlier caucus date and colder temperatures Republicans still turned up, so what drove us there?

My Answer: The remnants of the Ron Paul Revolution.

Why do I say that?  Because I’m one of them, and so were many of the faces I saw in the crowd on Tuesday night.  Yes, the firey passion has subsided and it’s not a presidential year, but the result of a massive bottom-up campaign focused on activism and word-of-mouth has left an innumerable crowd of conservatives looking for a means to continue their fight against the radical liberal excesses of the Obama Democrats.  So here we are Minnesota GOP, treat us well and we’ll do the same right back.

We got fired up and interested, and for many of us that interest hasn’t evaporated in us like it has in a majority of Obama supporters.  State Republican parties across the country are better off because of our increased involvement, for a great deal of the Ron Paul grassroots campaign was composed of younger people and college students that the GOP desperately needs to make inroads with. 

I was asked at least 5 times on caucus night why I came and why I was interested, because I was so much younger than the majority of others at the caucus.  A party in which it’s a surprise to be under 40 isn’t going to survive.  But that has started to change, thank gods, and needs to keep changing in the future if we’re going to remain a voice for growth and prosperity in Minnesota. 

Children are our future!  teehee.

Have it good,

-Mike

February 5, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

GOP Caucus update

I attended the local Republican caucus at for the 3rd year in a row last night, and a fun time was had by all.  Got to Moorhead High School about 6:30pm, pretty early I know but I wanted to scope out the room before the whole thing got started.  I was met at the door to the auditorium by Jeff Backer who is running for State Senate in our district.  Nice guy, I wish him the best of luck.  By the time we started, I noticed that most of the conservative elected officials in Moorhead were there – Brenda Elmer, Luther Stueland and Mark Hintermeyer from the City Council and Bill Tomhave from the school board are the ones I recognized right away.

After some socializing, the Chairman gave an introduction which was followed by some remarks by State Representative Morrie Lanning about Republican prospects both in Minnesota and around the country.  I realized again why I’ve voted for Rep. Lanning whenever I could.  He’s definitely a good voice for 9A.

After the speakers, some letters from candidates were read, I was particularly interested in the governor’s race.  Tom Emmer’s letter was read by Luther Stueland, and I really enjoyed what I heard.  It seemed very personal and energetic, just like what I’ve seen from his campaign.  I think I’m leaning more in Emmer’s direction as of late, especially after hearing Seifert’s letter, it just seemed very…uninspiring. 

Sure Seifert’s letter covered all the classic conservative bases, but I just came away feeling unfulfilled and unexcited, like what I’ve seen from his campaign.  I honestly agree with this opinion on TrueNorth today about Seifert’s moderate success in the GOP straw-poll, the author states that “considering Seifert’s ‘commanding lead’ in dollars, his insider status, and inheritance of a campaign operation – only garnering 50% last night is a bad performance.”  I’d have to agree with that assessment.

After the last letter was read we broke up into groups based on precinct and went to separate rooms to continue the caucus.  There 5 people including me in our room for 4W1P, and we elected a Precinct Captain and Secretary (the latter of which was me, oh boy!), took the straw poll that Emmer won with 3 votes, and had a lively discussion about some points of the MN GOP platform such as homeschooling, nullification by the 10th amendment and healthcare.  Since we were allotted 8 delegates for the precinct, and there were 5 people there, we voted us all as delegates to the County BPOU convention on Feb. 27th. 

A lot of people were curious why I, as a relatively young person, was as interested and committed enough to come to local caucus.  I realized I didn’t really know what to say, but after I thought about it, it was because I strongly believe that the principle of responsibility, which Rep. Lanning said was at the heart of our party, is really the best choice for Minnesota.  Whether its personal responsibility, fiscal responsibility or social responsibility, all of them are essential to good governance in Minnesota.

So that was pretty much the caucus, I thought it was a fun night bu then again I’m a political nerd.  haha. 

It was nice to see Conrad again since it’s been a while since we last talked, especially about politics, so that was cool too. 

Have it good,

-Mike

February 3, 2010 Posted by | Minnesota, Politics, Republicans | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

N.D. House Race

Finally, a challenger to Rep. Earl Pomeroy!  I don’t know much about Mr. Cramer, but anything is better than a bum that voted for the healthcare disaster in the House.  The GOP could run a tree against Pomeroy and it would win.  As long as it was at least 25 years old. 

Republican Kevin Cramer will announce his intentions for elective office Thursday, and a source said he will seek the GOP nomination for North Dakota’s lone U.S. House seat.

Cramer, whose term serving as one of three members of the North Dakota Public Service Commission expires this year, declined to say which office he will seek.

Cramer Will Run Against Pomeroy

Here’s his profile from the N.D. Public Service Commission-Commission: Kevin Cramer, Commissioner.  I think this will be a nice Red year for North Dakota. 

Have it good,

-Mike

January 12, 2010 Posted by | North Dakota, Politics | , , , , | 2 Comments

i don’t think i can even count that high

Well in this story here it looks like one of the Republican candidates for governor of Minnesota might be stepping out of the race.  That’s too bad, Pat Anderson was on my short list of favorites after I saw them all in September at debates in the Cities.  But never fail, since we in the GOP love competition so very much we’ve gained one as well! 

I’m not sure what I think of Bob Carney, the new moderate-leaning entry into the race.  I’m a strong conservative-libertarian, and the knee-jerk reaction to hearing “moderate” is a feeling of distaste, but maybe that’s what will capture Minnesota.  We’ll see.

“I think that the Republican Party needs to move in a more moderate and progressive direction, and it needs to be challenged on that,” Carney said. “I think I’ve got some ideas that are going to be appealing to a lot of people, including people who have left the Republican Party, and people who are independents.”

Field of Gubernatorial Candidates Continues to Grow

In other news, the party favorite Rep. Marty Seifert raised over $262,000 last year, with Tom Emmer coming in second with $115,000.  I met all the Republican candidates in September, and Rep. Seifert didn’t really strike me as a communicator like Pawlenty, but we’ll see.  I am a big fan of his positions on a lot of issues though, I’m just not sure if he has the charisma to win over more than Minnesota’s party base.

There’s your dose of Minnesota Republican politics for the day, enjoy!

Have it good,

-Mike

January 12, 2010 Posted by | Minnesota, Politics, Republicans | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

happy friday everyone! 1/8/2010

Yet another week has come and gone, and I begin the retreat to my classes on monday.  Don’t worry, my irreverent commentary on important issues won’t be stopped by academia! 

Until monday rolls around, here’s some good stories to tide you over:

Change we can really believe in – Good piece by the president of the Competitive Enterprise Institute, near the end is an excellent summary of what really needs to be done for the country.

 No More Room at the Bench – Are there too many law schools?  Is the market for attorneys saturated? 

Ten Unanswered Questions in the Flight 253 Summary – Go figure, the official White House summary is incomplete and unclear.

For Obama and the Media, Is the Honeymoon Finally Over? – Let’s hope so, the worship I see on the major news channels has made me nauseous for long enough.

 H&M and Wal-Mart Destroy and Trash Unsold Goods – This is just sad.  There isn’t anything else they could do with these clothes?  No tax deduction for charitable donations like individuals can take advantage of?  If not, maybe there should be. 

 

Have a good weekend!

-Mike

January 8, 2010 Posted by | News, Politics | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

cut government? yes please!

I swear I’m living in the twilight zone sometimes.  For those who don’t know, Minnesota is in the midst of a massive budget crisis, as are many other states across the country.  I’m sure it has a lot to do with this – State Tax Revenue in U.S. Drops Most Since 1963.

But in this other story that I want to talk about, a state employee union is actually begging Governor Pawlenty to cut positions in Minnesota.  Yes, you heard me.

Minnesota’s second largest state employees union says Gov. Tim Pawlenty can help solve the state’s budget problem by reducing the number of management positions and outside contracts in his administration.

Officials with the Minnesota Association of Professional Employees Thursday outlined $100 million in spending they say should be cut. With the state facing a $1.2 billion deficit, they say too much information technology work is being done by companies from outside of Minnesota.

State employee union proposes cutting Pawlenty appointees

They sure have put him in an interesting position, given that a great deal of these positions contain people appointed by Pawlenty.  But if he doesn’t kill their jobs, a Governor with presidential aspirations can kiss his conservative credentials goodbye.  Beautifully played by the opposition, I must admit.

So come on Governor, suck it up and slash these positions like the fiscal conservative you want to be.  Walk the walk.  Put our money where your mouth is. 

I’m not sure that last one really made sense…

Have it good,

-Mike

January 7, 2010 Posted by | Minnesota, Politics | , , , | Leave a comment