Monday, December 29, 2014

Steve Scalise, David Duke, and Electability Over Principle | RedState

Kudos to RedState's very own Erik Erickson for this straightforward piece on today's "scandal" over newly elected GOP congressman Steve Scalise (LA 1st District) and a speech he did 12 years ago to a white-supremacist group while he was still a state legislator.

Erickson moves beyond the argument over whether Scalise's single act of speaking to such a group is evidence of racism and hit the GOP leadership where it really hurts:

Putting electability over principles.

Steve Scalise, David Duke, and Electability Over Principle | RedState

Sunday, December 28, 2014

BREAKING (Not Really): GotNews' Chuck Johnson Resorts to GradeSchool Insults! - UPDATE!!

In a somewhat comical change of pace here at IndieRadicals, I've decided to have a bit of fun at Charles "Chuck" Johnson (renowned and reviled conservative author/journalist)..

For those of don't know or follow Mr. Johnson on Twitter, his the creator/editor of GotNews and has a rather colorful reputation on Twitter.

To put it simply, he is arguably one of the most divisive folks in American politics on Twitter today. For every supporter, he seems to have a dozen or so haters (and I mean haters!). 


Well, his method of journalism is definitely not what most would call conventional and he often specializes in digging up "dirt" on those he deems necessary/deserving. This ranges from liberal politicians to those at the center of some news story (including the man who killed two members of the NYPD just 8 days ago). 

His main goal is to expose, embarrass, and ultimately dismantle the so-called "mainstream media".

Which brings us to tonight's not-so breaking news.

While exchanging insults with Jordan Hoffman (freelance reporter for NY Daily, The Guardian, and Times of Israel), Chuck's usual "wit" seems to have been exhausted and he began to resort to tactics more akin to grade-schoolers..see below:

Then again, is arguable that Mr. Hoffman resorted to childish tactics first...

Still, for someone who mocks the MSM and makes it his business to destroy everything they stand for, one would expect him to take the "high ground" when arguing with a member of the MSM..

But hey, who actually lives to their own movement's expectations?

Now back to our regularly scheduled political programming...


Must be doing something right, because shortly after I published this post, Mr. Johnson "un-followed" me on Twitter!

I was so sad, I almost quit Twitter right then and there..then I remembered that I couldn't possibly care less if folks can't take the truth and a bit of satire ;)

Carry on folks!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

What's Wrong with Congress Today: Congressman Pleads Guilty to Tax Faud, Refuses to Resign House Seat

First, I want to say kudos to RealClearPolitics' Caitlin Huey-Burns for the informative article that inspired this post...

We are often berated with polls showing just how unpopular Congress is to the vast majority of Americans, but then again, few President's have much luck getting a majority of Americans to give them a proverbial 'thumbs up' for how their doing at their jobs either. So why the fuss?

The sheer scale of the public's disapproval of Congress is what should really catches folks' attention.

In a report released by the good number-crunchers at Gallup last week, 2014 was found to be the second to worst year for congressional approval since 1974. Just for those keeping score back home, only 2013 was a worse year for Congress. On average, Congress' approval rating for 2014 was just 15% (based on roughly a dozen polls taken since January 2014).

Now, before we get into WHY these numbers are so low, let's address one possible complaint out there about such polls. A lot of folks reading this are probably thinking, "so what, Congress has always been horribly unpopular".

Not true as it turns (something that surprised even me!)..

Also per the good folks at Gallup, while Congress has only rarely has the approval of a majority of Americans (occurring during the years immediately after the 9/11 terror attacks), they regularly had yearly average approval in the 35-50% range during the mid to latter-half of the 1990s.

There were also a few years where their ratings were as terrible as the last few years (1979 and 1992 specifically), they have never before been so consistently low year after year as they have been recently.

But here's what the scary truth is: Many in Congress couldn't care less.

How do I know that? Because of stories like that inspired this post today on RealClearPolitics.

Rep. Grimm of New York (R) has recently pleaded GUILTY to a felony tax fraud charge and also issued a "statement of facts" that acknowledges guilt in several other related charges (ranging from lying under oath to hiring undocumented immigrants), carrying a possible prison sentence of up to 36 months.

BUT he doesn't feel at this time that he could resign he newly re-elected House seat anytime soon.

That's right folks, this guy was just re-elected (rather comfortably I might add) to another 2-year term in Congress. What's worse is that these charges were known during much of the campaign and were (not surprisingly) used by his Democratic opponent in attack ads, but were not enough to scare off his constituents from voting..

Even with all these potentially damning legal charges against him during an election year, this former FBI agent won re-election by a 13 point margin.

So, wins re-election with 20 criminal charges filed against him, pleads guilty to one felony charge and de facto admits to the other 19 charges just 6 weeks after the election (convenient as hell), but thinks he is perfectly able and obligated to continue serving in Congress for the next 2 years. your tax dollars at work folks.

Dirtbags like Rep. Grimm are I fear, not the exception BUT the rule. Just as we saw in Texas' now infamous District Attorney-DUI showdown, regardless of party affiliation, many politicians in America today seem to be think they are ENTITLED to that cushy seat the voters have put them (whether directly or indirectly), illegal activities be damned.

What's potentially even worse is that such a large majority of congressional district voters seemed perfectly OK with looking past their charges during his campaign. Was it a "better the devil you know" situation or just blame complacency on the voters in his district?

Either way, just goes to show that some politicians will try to get away with just about anything to win your vote and sadly, far too many of us are just along with it, which makes US part of what's wrong with Congress today..


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Can Jeb Bush win Iowa? - POLITICO

With talk of the next presidential election cycle starting to heat up, focus will begin to increase the how many the potential contenders could perform in the early background states...

..and for better or worse, my home state of Iowa is one of those battleground states and as such, it is finding its way in the political news ALREADY..don't they know most Iowans barely surprised the 2014 election cycle without throwing their remotes at their televisions?

Regardless, POLITICO's James Hohmann has made the argument is his piece published today that former Florida governor Jeb Bush should NOT be underestimated in early states like Iowa. On the flip side, neither should anyone assume his name recognition will win him votes by that alone..

My take:

Bush, likely to get beat over the head with the, "any immigration reform without mass deportation is AMNESTY!" frenzy from pathetic partisans on the Right, will definitely have his work cut out for him among Iowa GOPers, who have a strong activist wing.

On the other hand, in a general election, I feel very strongly that Jeb Bush could win my home state as he could not only win most of the GOP vote but also has a good chance of winning a solid share of the state's moderates.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Gov. Branstad seeks to end Iowa GOP straw poll - New York News

Branstad seeks to end Iowa GOP straw poll - New York News

In this interesting piece of political news from home, Republican Governor Terry Branstad of Iowa is pushing to end something of a GOP tradition in Iowa presidential politics: the Ames Straw Poll.

This poll, which is often a rallying point for hot-blooded supporters of the GOP's more "colorful" candidates, has been a tradition for over three decades..but it also has many critics.

For one, at least since I have been following politics, the Ames Straw Poll is, to be blunt, absolute rubbish..especially at predicting who will win Iowa's presidential caucus.

Over those same three decades, the Ames Straw Poll has only occasionally predicted the correct caucus results in the state and in the last two presidential cycles has been popularized by the supports of more extreme or 'off-the-wall' GOP contenders, such as Michelle Bachmann and Ron Paul.

So as a good gauge for seeing who the real contenders are for the GOP, the Ames Straw Poll doesn't seem to be of much help, which does make one wonder what the point of it really is.

If the poll doesn't seem to help get our name out in Iowa and win you the caucus, then why bother?

Kudos to the Associated Press' Catherine Lucey for this story (re-posted in the New York News).

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Who Voted How on 'Cromnibus' Bill? Have a Look for Yourself!

Given how much the "Cromnibus" spending bill was talked about over the last few days and the last-minute Senate vote last night approving the bill, an observer may be wondering.."how did my Senator vote?"

Well, wonder no more!

Thanks to the good folks at, you can see the state-by-state breakdown for how each of the 96 senators on the floor last night actually voted.

Sites like GovTrack are an invaluable source for those who want to not only remain informed about how folks in Congress are actually voting, but also providing a handy fact-checking tool for  the next election cycle who the usual game of finger-point on who voted for what begins..

For my part, I found it quite interesting that both current U.S. Senators from my home state of Iowa (Republican Chuck Grassley and Democrat Todd Harkin) voted "nay" on the bill, though I suspect for VERY different reasons..

Remember folks, an informed electorate is a dangerous electorate, if you're a member of Congress that is..

Senator Elizabeth Warren's Stand Against 'Cromnibus' Bill, First Real Spark for 2016?

The debate leading up to the U.S. Senate's vote last night on the so-called "Cromnibus" bill to fund the federal government through next year was arguably the biggest political story this weekend (and a minor distraction from the Senate Torture Report).

One of the reasons for the attention placed on this vote was not just the prospect of another government shutdown, but the fact that opposition against the bill came from the political "edges" of both the Republican and Democratic parties.

On the Republican side, Senators Cruz and Lee acted as their usual "rogue" selves and challenged that bill largely on the grounds that it wouldn't stop President Obama from carrying out his executive action on illegal immigration (though the bill does stop funding for the Department of Homeland Security 7 months earlier than the rest of the federal government). No big surprise there..

But the fact there was vocal Democratic resistance to the bill is what was truly surprising.

Senator Elizabeth Warren, a much talked about prospective Democratic contender for the 2016 Presidential nomination, emerged as the leader of the "progressive" wing of the Democratic party in the Senate and challenged the bill for COMPLETELY different reasons than Senators Cruz and Lee. They decried the bill because of what they see as a 'roll-back' of financial regulatory reform put into place after the 2008 crash.

True to their words, the leaders of opposition from both parties against this bill voted accordingly but nevertheless, the bill passed a close 56-40 vote last night.

Now that the bill has passed, many in the political media have moved to Senator Warren and how her  stand against this bill could be her first real spark into her (potentially) eventual presidential campaign.

Until now, Warren's name has been thrown around as possible "anybody but Hillary" candidate so as to, at the very least, not present the image of Hillary Clinton being the inevitable candidate in 2016, without any kind of action by Warren to show she was truly interested in being a contender..until now.

So perhaps we WILL get to see some fireworks on the Democratic side this next presidential election cycle after all..


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

"Highlights" from the CIA Torture Report..

Changing gears a bit from the usual political back and forth and how "protesters" across America are effectively ignoring AND destroying the legacy left by great men like Rev. Martin Luther King Jr...

Today's top story is unarguably the "torture report" released by the U.S. Senate concerning the tactics used by the CIA in the years after the 9/11 terror attacks.

The report is a bit lengthy and thankfully, several good folks online have already skimmed through it and pulled out some rather disgusting and disturbing "highlights" for us to try and wrap our heads around (via Dylan Matthews of Vox).

My feelings concerning "enhanced interrogation techniques" is a bit complicated but I'll leave with this simple "truth": EIT is, by the reasoning of any SANE human being, torque. Period.

The debate over whether EIT is torture or not is, and has always been, a false narrative meant to distract folks from the reality: We tortured suspected terrorists to get information that we felt would be vital to the national security of this nation.

Thus, the REAL debate should be this: Should our national security be driven by the idea of "the ends justify the means" or should it be driven by the concept of doing everything within our power to protect this country WITHOUT stooping to the moral level of our enemies?

That, is the question we as Americans have to answer...


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

The Unnecessary Death of Eric Garner- National Review

In a time of high emotion across the country over several recent cases of African-Americans dying in altercations with law enforcement, it's nice to read a rational opinion piece from, of all places, a well-known conservative media source, the National Review.

Specifically, NR's editors recent piece titled, The Unnecessary Death of Eric Garner

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Time Magazine Author: "..peaceful protesting is a luxury of those already in mainstream culture"- WRONG!

In a recent piece published by Time Magazine, author Darlena Cunha makes the argument that incidents of rioting like those that have occurred in the last week over the non-indictment of a Ferguson police office in the death of Michael Brown are not only justifiable, but maybe necessary in the battle to end racial discrimination in America.

Now, there is a fair argument to be made that IF your particular cause is truly "just" and you have been unable to advance the changes needed to correct by any and all other means, than some level of "non-peaceful" action may be required. The author makes this as her primary argument throughout the piece, even invoking the Boston Tea Party as an example of a "riot" that was necessary to advance change.

BUT, and it is a rather big BUT, that argument is fundamentally flawed on several points.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Live Coverage of Ferguson Protest at Street Level

For those wanting to watch a very raw (and un-edited) view of the protests in Ferguson, Missouri from the ground level with some of the protesters themselves, I have found a link for ya'll..

Please be advise though, that as this feed is unfiltered and uncensored, there is the chance for you hearing rather "colorful" language. Just in the last 30 minutes of me listening/watching, I've heard two "f@ck the police" chants, though I'm not going to condemn this whole "movement" based on these chants alone.

Regardless of the "colorful" language and chants, it is VERY important for folks to actually see these kind of events in America with their own eyes and WITHOUT any filters of any kind..

Live Feed- PzFeed

Friday, November 21, 2014

Progressive PAC poll prefer Bernie Sanders to Hillary Clinton??

In a break from the "all immigration, all the time" posts as of late, here is a story from the left side of the American political spectrum.

It would seem that at least some "progressives" in America today are not on the Hillary Clinton bandwagon for the upcoming 2016 presidential election circus..

In an internal poll taken by the progressive PAC Democracy for America of their members found that 42% wanted Senator Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) to be their top choice for the Democratic nomination, with Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont) coming in second at 24%. Hillary Clinton followed up closely behind Sanders at 23%. Over a 164,000 members of the PAC apparently took part in the poll.

For those who don't know much about senators Warren and Sanders, I strongly suggest you take a look here at some fairly impartial profiles of the two politicians:

Ballotpedia- Bernie Sanders

Ballotpedia- Elizabeth Warren

Thursday, November 20, 2014

President Obama's Executive Action: If only a good speech made it right..

After watching President Obama's speech tonight on his planned executive actions concerning potentially millions of illegal immigrants in American today, I have to admit, it was a good speech. In fact, it's probably the most honest and heartfelt speech he has given in YEARS...

But that's doesn't make what he said good policy, or any less constitutionally questionable.

As those on the left have preached for a week or so now, the idea of presidents issuing executive orders to extend some form of "amnesty" or protection to illegal immigrants is NOT new.

But as we covered in an earlier piece, the CONTEXT of those earlier executives is important to remember. When presidents Reagan and Bush Sr. issued their executive orders, they did so in direct connection to a very recently passed federal law.

What President Obama has proposed tonight is to do something a bit, "grander". Instead of acting in concert with an existing/recently passed federal immigration law, he is moving to modify the ENTIRE immigration enforcement system.

Does a President truly have the constitutional authority to do such a thing?

Monday, November 17, 2014

Pres. Obama in 2010: "I can't just make the laws up by myself."

To add to the confusion concerning President Obama's proposed/rumored executive order on "amnesty" for millions of illegal immigrants in the United States, it turns the President has not always been so enthusiastic about the idea of he taking such unilateral action on his own.

Back in 2010, President Obama participated in several interviews/speeches in which he discussed the topic of immigration reform in the United States. One interview in particular really stands out though for me in this conversation, here is a question and the President's response from a radio interview with Univision Radio Network:

SOTELO: Under your administration, Mr. President, almost half a million immigrants have been deported, more than any other president. I want to be clear that I'm talking about immigrant families that are hard working, are learning the English language and are helping our economy. What can your administration do to stop deportations now?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, the main thing we have to do to stop deportations is to change the laws. What my administration has done is actually change our priorities because you mentioned that there are a lot of families out there, but the truth is, it's actually that the way we're now enforcing the law puts less emphasis on families, more emphasis on those with criminal records and so the big increase in deportations has actually to do with people with criminal records who've been engaging in illegal activity, not just because they don't have papers, but because they've been engaging in criminal activity. But the most important thing that we can do is to change the law because the way the system works -- again, I just wanna repeat, I'm president, I'm not king. If Congress has laws on the books that says that people who are here who are not documented have to be deported, then I can exercise some flexibility in terms of where we deploy our resources, to focus on people who are really causing problems as a opposed to families who are just trying to work and support themselves. But there's a limit to the discretion that I can show because I am obliged to execute the law. That's what the Executive Branch means. I can't just make the laws up by myself. So the most important thing that we can do is focus on changing the underlying laws. That requires Congress to cooperate. As I've said before, I've got the majority of Democrats who are ready to make those changes, but we are gonna need some help from the other side and that's where our focus has to be.

I made sure to include the entire question and answer portion to make sure we don't run into any "gotcha moment" issues.

I don't see much need to elaborate the importance of this quote from the President, as his own words on the subject of over-reaching executive authority speak for themselves...


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Pres. Obama's Proposed Executive Order on Immigration: Truly "Unprecedented"?

Tonight's piece was inspired by several "spirited" Twitter conversations I have had over the last two days concerning President Obama's proposed/rumored executive order extending so-called "amnesty" to as many as 5 million illegal immigrants in the United States.

Specifically, the conservation started when @Clydetheslyde posted an image comparing the GOP's reaction to this proposed/rumored executive order as President Reagan's sentiment towards what the GOP so lovingly calls "amnesty" today.

Now, I've actually never been a big fan of "gotcha" images like this (though I do admit they are quite effective in motivating me into a debate), and I posted in counter that Reagan's "amnesty" was first passed by Congress and then signed by him into law, not solely by 'executive fiat'.

This wandered initially into a comparison of Obama's proposed/rumored executive action and other famous EOs like Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation (which I challenged on several vital points) and then to the topic of how constitutional ANY executive really is. As per the usual with debates I have with @Clydetheslyde, it was a little heated but ultimately a good and respectful debate.

To add further fuel to this fire today, @Mobygrapefan pointed out to me today that actually, there was more to Reagan's venture into "amnesty" than I was originally aware of (per the Huffington Post).

Saturday, November 15, 2014

House continues ban on earmarks | RedState

In a fairly refreshing set of news, the GOP caucus in the House of Representatives has voted to KEEP the "earmarks" barn in House spending bills.

It didn't quite go down without a hitch, but still, good to see the GOP trying to maintain at least SOME level of good governance in Congress..

Now let's see if the Senate follows suit..

Kudos to Redstate's Streiff for this short and sweet piece..

House continues ban on earmarks | RedState

Bill Walker's Independent Ticket Wins Alaska Governor's Race |

The governor's race in the state of Alaska was obviously not a widely talked about race on election night this year, and yet it turns out to have come to a rather unique conclusion:

Instead of just the same old "GOP vs Dems" type of race, a former Republican ran as an independent and convinced the Democratic candidate to be his running mate as Lt. Governor in a so-called "unity ticket"..

Kudos to IVN's Alex Gauthier for this piece.

Bill Walker's Independent Ticket Wins Alaska Governor's Race |

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

"GruberGate" and the 'Stupidity of the American Voter'

There has been a fair amount of talk on the internet the last week or so concerning the so-called "GruberGate" (I hate that EVERYBODY gets a "gate" these days, should be preserved for proper scandals..).

Interestingly though, the biggest element of this "scandal" is how LITTLE more traditional or "mainstream media" have covered it, if at all in fact, which gives the conservative media something to complain about..A never-ending cycle of American media and politics, gotta love it.

Anyway, back to the "scandal". Here is the short version:

Jonathan Gruber is a professor of economics at MIT and was, by his admission, one of the chief architects of Massachusetts's 2006 healthcare reform program (aka "RomneyCare") and the 2006 Affordable Healthcare Act (aka "ObamaCare"). In other words, probably not the most well liked guy in conservative circles.

While at a conference in 2013, Mr. Gruber made the following comment concerning the 2009 healthcare law:

"Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage and basically, call it the 'stupidity of the American voter' or whatever, that was really critical to getting the thing passed."

Pretty damning quote right? Hard to argue with that..but you all know me better than that.

Monday, November 10, 2014

What The 'Do Nothing Congress' Can Tell Us About The Future of U.S. Politics |

An interesting piece from the Independent Voters Network's David Yee comparing the current Congress with the previous best-known "Do Nothing Congress" and what this comparison could tell us about the politics we are going to be seeing the next 2 years...

What The 'Do Nothing Congress' Can Tell Us About The Future of U.S. Politics |

Ten bad assumptions about 2014. | RedState

Not a terrible list from RedState's Moe Lane...

Ten bad assumptions about 2014. | RedState

Further Proof that American Politics are getting Ugly..REAL Ugly

If you were watching Fox News on election night last week, you probably saw an exchange occur repeated between commentator Juan Williams and several of the news' panel's more, "conservative" members (seems oxymoronic to have to say so considering this is Fox we're talking about, but bear with me).

The argument that Juan Williams was trying to make early on in the evening was that the results of the election thus far were largely due to an "anti-incumbent" sentiment and since the Democrats had more Senate seats up for grabs, they were bound to lose to some degree because of its sentiment.

Problem was, as the other members of the panel pointed out, even GOP incumbents (including those not really popular in their respective states such as Mitch McConnell) were not only winning but winning with fair margins.

So while Juan Williams may have been wrong in trying to apply this "anti-incumbent" sentiment to the Democrat's eventual defeat, that fact that Senate candidates who are normally not popular with their constituents were fairly easily winning re-election is something to make note of.

The basic logic of elections is this: if the politician is unpopular before the election cycle starts, he/she will probably not have an easy time winning re-election.

But as Senator Mitch McConnell can testify, that is not always the case, not by a long shot.

Further, even in some open Senate races, such as Iowa's seat vied for by Democrat Bruce Braley and GOPer Joni Ernst, neither candidate had a reliably strong lead (let alone pulling more than 50% in a majority of polls) going into election night. Regardless of this, Joni Ernst beat her Democratic opponent by roughly 10 points and won just over 52% of the vote.

This "phenomenon" was explored today by Politico's Maggie Haberman here.

More or less, the political reality of elections works out like this: As long as your polling numbers are better than your opponents, you can win a majority of the voters' support.

What does this really mean?

Well, a nasty by-product of this reality is you can wage a nasty, cutthroat, and downright hateful campaign against your opponent, and as long as enough voters buy what you're selling and like your opponent just a little less than you, you can win. Hence the rise in such election campaign strategies (often times carried out by "unofficially affiliated" Super PACs).

And you wonder why so few politicians these days wage so-called "clean campaigns", which seek to minimize personal attacks on your opponent and aim more to educate voters on your own political stances...

Welcome to the current political reality in America folks, for better or..or just for worse.


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

NASA Signs 60-Year, $1.16 Billion Lease with Google

In a rather refreshing change of pace, we have a story tonight about a federal government agency making a useful (not to mention profitable) use of government assets and resources..

Now before you all bust a gut laughing about this notion, lets get to the facts.

Google has apparently signed a long-term lease agreement with NASA to access the Moffett Field Naval Station near San Francisco, California.

The Moffett Field Naval Station is a place of interesting history and is well known for its three large hangars, which were originally built for U.S. Navy airships. These large hangars have even made an appearance on the popular television series MythBusters.

So what is so interesting about this lease agreement between NASA and Google?

Google isn't just getting a wider use of this facility, they are actually to fix it up a bit!

They are currently planning on investing some $200 million to refurbish the hangars and add educational facilities.

In other words, NASA is leasing one of its older and less modern facilities to a private company for a handsome price and getting the facilities improved WITHOUT having to use their own funds. This is a perfect example of a federal government agency using some of its assets in a smart and economic fashion, a rarity it seems these days.

So now you maybe asking yourself something along the lines of, "well that's a rather deal, but what does Google get out of it?"

A good question no doubt, but not one that is easy to answer. The closest I am aware of Google being involved in the aerospace field is the Google Lunar X Prize. This is a competition of sorts to inspire private companies and technology entrepreneurs to develop cheaper and more efficient technologies for travel to the Moon and possibly even exploring the surface.

So does Google want to build Moffett into the perfect launch site for some of these ventures or perhaps even develop such technology itself?

That, it seems is the $1.16 billion question.

Wall Street Journal- Google Signs 60-Year, $1.16 Billion NASA Lease

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Immigration Reform: Next Major Political Battle?

I haven't posted anything lately concerning the debate over immigration reform in America and the much talked-about and denounced possibility that President Obama will announce a sweeping executive order that will provide "amnesty" to millions of illegal immigrants here in America...

I have "amnesty" in parenthesis because I despise how it is used by Conservative pathetic partisans as a code-word for internal stupidity. In other words, when any member of the GOP talks about some sort of immigration reform and this "reform" doesn't include forcibly arresting/removing the millions of illegal immigrants NOW, the pathetic partisans within the GOP immediately denouncement them for advocating "amnesty".

Regardless of the fact that for it to truly be "amnesty", the illegal immigrants would face NO repercussions of any kind for their behavior, something very folks on either side of the isle have actively proposed..

Entering into this fray, the fact that the Democratic party is not necessarily unified in support of a possible sweeping executive order from President Obama concerning immigration reform..including quite possibly the Vice President, Joe Biden.

Link below courtesy The Weekly Standard:

President, VP May Differ on Immigration Strategy: 'Obama Angrily Cut Biden Off' | The Weekly Standard

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Newly re-elected GOP Governor wants to RAISE Gas Tax..wait, what?

That's right folks, just two days after winning a new 4-year term as Governor of the State of Iowa, Terry Branstad has proposed raising the state's gasoline tax..

Branstad: Transportation funding will be priority in 2015- Des Moines Register

Now a Republican proposing a tax INCREASE may sound a bit counter-intuitive, but Governor Branstad's reasons for such a tax are something most folks care about: better roads and bridges.

And while a lot of folks in Iowa will likely be very happy to have better roads, I wonder if the Governor may have slightly over-estimated how smoothly this will go over with Iowans as a whole.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Things to Remember after Election Night..

Things to Remember After Election Night...

Regardless of which party does come out on top at the end of the night (GOP just 3 seats away from a simple 51-seat majority as I type this), there are going to be some major challenges for the Senate when they come back early next year. Here are just a few of those:

  • IF the GOP manages to win control of the Senate, it's not yet guaranteed that current Minority Leader (and re-elected tonight) Mitch McConnell will end up being the new Majority Leader. He is still fairly unpopular in the more conservative and Tea-Partier sections of the GOP, that opposition at least partially headed by junior Senator Ted Cruz of Texas. That said, given his strong finish (~10-11 point win over his opponent), trying to move him off that top position may be trickier than his enemies within the GOP originally thought. 
  • IF the GOP fails to win majority control of the Senate, we will likely witness a level of GOPers "eating their own" much greater than after Mitt Romney's loss in 2012..No party does it better!
  • Even if the nights turns out really great for the GOP, it doesn't seem likely they will have the same kind of majority the Democrats had going in and thus one has to wonder how effectively the GOP will be able to run the Senate. Harry Reid with a relatively small majority was able to successfully defeat the GOP at seemingly every turn for many years now. Folks may despise Mr. Reid, most political wonks will tell you all day long that he IS an "effective" Majority Leader in that he is very capable of stepping his opposition from having their voice heard. Can Mitch McConnell (or some one else) do the same once in power?
  • Expect President Obama to attempt to "make nice" with the GOP in the next few months and do so very publicly. Why? Because if they spur him while he is so publicly reaching out to them, he could garner additional support for further "executive actions". Further, with the GOP potentially in control of both houses of Congress, the term "lame duck" is going to really start to get thrown around (except for at FoxNews where they have been chatting it up for months now..). What better way to remind folks he is still there than a political showdown?
  • May not actually know the final tally by tonight's end or even by tomorrow. Louisiana's election could turn into a run-off that goes into NEXT YEAR..
  • In addition, while we will all be glad to NOT have to see any more nasty and idiotic political ads on TV for at least a little while, we should expect talk of 2016's presidential election almost IMMEDIATELY..For better or worse.

Overall, I don't think it's too much of a stretch to say that this year's midterm congressional elections are the most watched and most participated in for many years (we'll wait for some actual data to back-up that up or not). That, in its own right, is a pretty big deal in American politics.
Generally, midterms do not have the same levels of turnout as Presidential elections, not even by a long shot and yet this one is potentially going to have an even bigger impact than the GOP's return to power in the House back in 2010.

For those who did vote in tonight's elections across the country, kudos to you for doing your part to move the political system and actively participating in a political system that far too many see as irreversibly corrupt and pointless.

For those slackers who did NOT vote in this election, here something to keep in mind:
You don't get to whine and bitch about how the federal government is screwing you over if you are too lazy to get off your duff and do something about it.

If you think the government is doing everything wrong, stop just being part of the idiotic and childish echo chamber and try and enact some "change" yourself.


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Don't think voter fraud can happen?

Recently, I discussed the arguments for and against stricter voter-ID laws across the United States, specifically focusing on those that require photo-ID of some variety, pointing out using others' works that there was strong argument for and against such laws.

Now, it seems that the potential threat of voter fraud has been demonstrated with both more undercover "operatives" and at least one actual case of it.

Conservative "operative" (not sure what the best word is for him), James O'Keefe showed off video evidence illustrating the major flaws in the states where voting requires no real identification: he was able to impersonate actual individuals on voter registries and on 20 separate places, was not preventing from actually voting. In fact the only thing that seems to have prevented O'Keefe from committing actual voter fraud was his own actions in ending the "undercover operation". 

This however, was not the first time we have heard about the issue of voter fraud in the last 48 hours or so.

Des Moines Register Pollster Gets Flak for latest Poll

Not too surprising, the latest Des Moines Register poll released this past week, which showed GOP candidate Joni Ernst 7 points ahead of Democrat Bruce Braley, has been treated with some suspicion and criticism over the last few days.

The brunt of this flak has been directed at pollster J. Ann Selzer, but she seems to be taking it all in stride...

Des Moines Register pollster on criticism of Senate numbers

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Three days to go until the elections. The die is cast. So CALM DOWN. | RedState

Regular RedState author Moe Lane with a message for those political wonks out there who are in full freak-mode...

Which is definitely not me..

Did I mention a new poll for the Iowa Senate race was out?..

Three days to go until the elections. The die is cast. So CALM DOWN. | RedState

BREAKING Iowa Poll: Joni Ernst takes 7-point Lead

Kudos to The Des Moines Register for breaking this story..

On a cautionary note, this is just ONE poll, but given we are less than 3 days away from the vote, the "shock value" of this poll will definitely be felt in the Braley camp..

Joni Ernst takes a 7-point Lead- The Des Moines Register

The Party of Nonvoters

Kudos to the good folks at the Pew Research Center for an interesting "numbers" piece concerning this year's elections, but not quite the numbers you think..

Instead of investing how the LIKELY voters will be this year, Pew's folks are focusing on the UNLIKELY voters..

Definitely worth a read!

The Party of Nonvoters

Democrats fear Iowa slipping away

The growing possibility of BOTH Iowa members to the U.S. Senate being Republicans has definitely got Democrats back home in Iowa a wee bit nervous..

Kudos to POLITICO's Katie Glueck for this rather timely piece.

Democrats fear Iowa slipping away

Friday, October 31, 2014

CNN's DIY 'Magic Wall' - POLITICO

Another good story for lovers of "political metrics" out there, now CNN is giving folks easy access to their historical and nation-wide elections stats that you have probably seen on any recent election on CNN..

Unless of course you refuse to watch CNN and FoxNews is streamed on a 24/7 basis in your home..

CNN's DIY 'Magic Wall'

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Political Spectrum: It's more than "Left & Right."

Another thought-provoking and non-midterm related piece tonight, this time posted on the official website of the political party that originally inspired me to start this blog years ago, the Modern Whig Party.

Of course, any views expressed by the author "joebrown", may not necessarily reflect the views of the Modern Whig Party itself.

Political Spectrum: It's more than "Left & Right."

A Federalist, a Libertarian, & a Statist Walk into a Bar..- Adam Gurri

In a refreshing break from the "All Midterms, All the the time!" stories posted as of late, here is a very thought-provoking piece by Adam Gurri, which was reposted on The Federalist (don't worry, they did so perfectly legally)

In this piece, Gurri simplifies the spectrum of American political views into just three categories: Federalism, Property, and Liberation.

Read more here!

Odds looking good for GOP with 5 Days to Go- FiveThirtyEight Politics

For those who don't know what FiveThirtyEight is, you really are missing out on one of the best sources out there for solid political metrics...

What are political metrics you ask? Simple: Polling Data. 

Normally, polling data isn't terribly exciting stuff (unless you're a nerd for numbers like myself), but world-famous pollster Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight is one of the best in the business and does so in a way that is, thankfully, presented in such a way that makes it fairly easy to understand for wonks and everyday folks alike. 

Without going into too much depth, FiveThirtyEight compiles information from many hundreds of polls across the nation and in this election cycle, focusing primarily on the odds of which major party will gain or retain control of the United States Senate. 

Now, I invite you to take a gander at today's latest update at the FiveThirtyEight's site giving the current odds of which party will come out victorious in next week's elections...

Though if you're a die-hard Democrat and are at all squeamish, might not be the best idea..

2 Scenarios for Tuesday's Vote- RealClearPolitics

Kudos to RealClearPolitics's Sean Trende for an interesting hypothetical piece on what the election results for next Tuesday could end up being..

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Joni Ernst explains missed edit board - POLITICO

Politico's Jonathan Topaz tackles a recent political ruffle that occurred in Iowa's much talked about U.S. Senate race: Why did the GOP candidate Joni Ernst skip a scheduled interview with the state's biggest newspaper?

Without giving too much away from Mr. Topaz's piece, the idea of The Des Moines Register has a particular political alignment is NOT new. I have heard it my whole life back home about how much of a "liberal rag" the paper was. However, that doesn't necessarily mean it's true, as the paper has indeed endorsed GOP candidates for state-wide and nation-wide office in the past. Notably, during the GOP primary in Iowa, the paper endorsed none other than Joni Ernst!

Joni Ernst explains missed edit board

The Most Wide-Open Senate Election in a Decade- POLITICO

The most wide-open Senate election in a decade

Saturday, October 25, 2014

The ghost of Simpson Bowles haunts 2014- POLITICO

The ghost of Simpson Bowles haunts 2014

Amazing* how arguably the most serious attempt by any American politicians to solve the deficit crisis we continue to struggle with today has instead being used as a weapon in political ads by BOTH parties..

That's our elected representatives for ya folks!

*also see: "Disgusting" and "Pathetic"

Des Moines Register Endorses Bruce Braley for U.S. Senate

The editorial board of Iowa's most prominent newspaper has just announced their endorsement for the U.S. Senate race..just in time for tomorrow's Sunday paper! (Insider-Iowa kind of joke there)

Endorsement: Bruce Braley is Better Choice

Voter-ID Laws: Disenfranchisement or Necessary Evil?

In something of a change from the usual political rant, we are instead looking at a major issue in American politics: Voter-ID laws

And instead of just talking about one side of the argument, I want to discuss and mention BOTH sides of this much-argued topic: Are such laws disenfranchising the poor and many minority voters or is it a necessary evil to combat voter fraud?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Federal Judge Upholds Puerto Rico's Gay Marriage Ban- LA Times

In an interesting twist to the growing political storm surrounding the recent "rash" of state statutes against gay marriage being struck down in federal court, a federal judge in Puerto Rico has upheld that US territory's law banning gay marriage.

What reasoning did this federal judge use?

Surprisingly enough, a legal precedent set by the U.S. Supreme Court 43 years ago in the Baker vs Nelson case.

To learn more, please read Lauren Raab's recent piece in the Los Angeles Times..

Puerto Rico's Gay Marriage Ban Upheld by Federal Judge

200,000 Iowans have already voted | Politics - KCCI Home

Like they used to say in Chicago-style politics, "vote early and vote often!"

Just kidding folks!

200,000 Iowans have already voted | Politics - KCCI Home

NY Times article documents urban shift in Iowa | Local News - KCCI Home

Interesting article via The New York Times described by one of Iowa's two major news organizations..

Without giving too much away, the main jist of the article is concerning how Iowa is no longer the farming-centric state it once was. For those outside of Iowa, this may be a bit surprising, but for someone who was born and raised there, we have know this harsh truth for some time.

Small, family-owned/operated farms are now a fading reality (though some families, like my own, still hold on proudly to the farms they have lived on for many decades, some even older!). The population and lifestyle in Iowa has been shifting to the major metropolitan areas, especially around the capital city of Des Moines for many years now, even though the state's actual population growth has been fairly minor (causing Iowa to go from having five congressional districts prior to the last census to just four today).

On the other hand, Iowa is one of the nation's leading users of wind-power (the damn things are all over the state now, even in the rolling hills of my native southern Iowa) and has one of the nation's lowest unemployment rates.

And as more Iowans move to urban areas, the "traditional" element that drives politics there is bound to change as well and this all factors into making this years Senate race one of the most watched in the nation..

NY Times article documents urban shift in Iowa | Local News - KCCI Home

Monday, October 20, 2014

TheBlaze- Ferguson Protesters & Football Fans get into scuffle in St. Louis

Some video proof that some elements of the "Ferguson" protest movement (though calling it a movement may not be accurate as this point, not exactly sure where one should draw the line) are not only poorly organized, but kind of missing the whole point of "non-violent" protests...

Ferguson Protesters and Football Fans Brawl in Street After St. Louis Rams Game


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Roberts misses two-thirds of ag committee meetings since 2000 |

Roberts misses two-thirds of ag committee meetings since 2000 |

Regardless of whether he had perfectly good reasons for missing these meetings, such "news" is a potential PR disaster for a Senator from a rural state like Kansas..

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Watch Full Iowa Senate Debate!

Tonight, we saw the first televised debate in one of the mostly closely watched Senate race this election cycle, between Democrat Bruce Braley and Republican Joni Ernst.

Hosted and moderated by local TV news station KCCI and concluded only a short time ago.

Thankfully, KCCI was kind enough to post the debate, in full, to their website..


Iowa U.S. Senate Debate - KCCI News

Iowa Poll: Joni Ernst Now Leads Bruce Braley for Senate

I'll keep this introduction short, the latest Des Moines Register poll in Iowa for the first time in many months actually shows one of the two candidates in the lead. For Democrats though, hoping to keep control of the U.S. Senate, it's not exactly good news..

For details, I leave you in the very capable hands of Jennifer Jacobs of the Des Moines Register..

Iowa Poll: Joni Ernst now leads Bruce Braley for Senate

Monday, September 8, 2014

Could a "True" Independent Really Win a US Senate Seat?

For many in America this political season, one of the most exciting races this year (for political nerds like myself at least) is the U.S. Senate race in Kansas. Why?

In this contest, political wounded Pat Roberts (Republican) is fighting to keep his Senate seat, first from his fellow Republicans (who deemed him not NEARLY conservative enough) and now against, of all things, an Independent.

For a bit of background for the readers who may not be familiar with this race, here are some basic facts to be aware of (1):

  • Pat Roberts has occupied this Senate seat since 1996 and is attempting to win his 4th term.
  • Roberts did NOT face an easy nomination process. Not only did he have to contend with several strong primary challenges, his victory over them was with only 48.1% of the vote. 
  • Further, his opposition was not that widely dispersed as one of his challengers, Milton Wolf, managed to get 40.8% of the primary vote. 
  • The top Democratic challenger, Chad Taylor, scarcely did much better. While he had only one primary challenger to contend with (in which he won 52% of the vote), it doesn't do you much good to win your party's vote when you have very little state-wide support. 
  • As such, Chad Taylor made the shocking announcement that just a few months before the November vote, he was dropping out of the race.
  • This was not necessarily much a blessing to Roberts however, as his own state-wide support was hardly much better than the Democrat's. 
  • Enter into the equation Greg Orman: Officially a "non-affiliated candidate", who in 2008 ran in the Democratic primary to unseat Roberts but chose to withdraw before the Democratic primary. He has never held political office before and has spent his adult life working for several electrical companies in Kansas.
So, the main question many of you may be wondering is: So what if an "independent" is running for a U.S. Senate seat?

Simple answer: Because he could actually win.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Stupid Story of the Week: Rick Perry Indicted by Public Integrity Officials for Demanding DA actually SHOW Integrity..

Breaking News!

Texas Governor Rick Perry is indicted for first threatening and then carrying out a threat to veto funds to a District Attorney's office (including their Public Integrity Unit) after the District Attorney is convicted of drunk driving. Here is the "full story" from FoxNews:

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has been indicted for abuse of power after carrying out a threat to veto funding for state public corruption prosecutors.
The Republican governor is accused of abusing his official powers by publicly promising to veto $7.5 million for the state public integrity unit at the Travis County District Attorney's office. He was indicted by an Austin grand jury Friday.
Perry said he'd veto the funding if the district attorney, Rosemary Lehmberg, didn't resign. Lehmberg had recently been convicted of drunken driving. The state's Public Integrity Unit operates out of her office.
When Lehmberg refused, Perry carried out his veto, drawing an ethics complaint.
Perry is the first Texas governor indicted in nearly a century. He's leaving office in January, but he's a possible 2016 presidential run.

Now, let that sink in for a moment: a District Attorney was CONVICTED of drunk driving (not simply accused or charged mind you) and because of this, Governor Rick Perry demanded this DA resign or else he was going to veto millions of dollars in state funds for that DA's office. When the DA refused, Rick Perry carried through his threat and is now being indicted for a supposed ethics violation by the "Public Integrity Unit" in the DA's office...

So, Rick Perry's attempt to have a DA take responsibility for her CRIMINAL actions and resign (in other words, showing some INTEGRITY as a DA) is being called unethical?? How about a DISTRICT ATTORNEY being convicted of drunk driving and not resigning as if they did nothing wrong or contrary to their duty as an enforcer of the law?

Need I say more?

UPDATE: Apparently I do. Turns out the DA in question (and the reason Perry vetoed the $7.5 million in funds) was found to have had a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit. Plus, here is a good video on her arrest via KXAN in Texas:

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Iowa Political News of the Day: Steve King as his usually Charming Self & Rand Paul's Disappearing Act!

I'm always a sucker for political stories from back home in Iowa and it turns out today's story is not only a classic story concerning one of my LEAST favorite politicians back home, also includes a rather telling moment for a major 2016 Presidential contender...

My favorite quote from the piece pretty much sums it up:

"But what of Senator Paul? He was eating a burger right next to King when the activists arrived. He shook their hands, took a bite, then fled, as if he’d forgotten that he’d promised to be somewhere else, like another state.?"

Funny, because that's EXACTLY how many Iowans who don't live in King's district feel!

Rand Paul escapes trap set by immigration activists. But what about 2016?

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Let's Not Impeach Obama | RedState

Let's Not Impeach Obama | RedState

Without giving too much of this article's content away, I just want to say something for the record:

The author of this piece, who goes by the name of Repair_Man_Jack, is about as anti-Obama as it gets, even for the good folks at RedState (hey, at least they're honest about it!).

So for this author to not only denounce talk of impeachment of the President (going so far as to suggest Sarah Palin's public call for impeachment is a desperate attempt at getting attention), but also make some great points as to WHY the path of impeachment is illogical and ultimately not justified, is no small thing.

I think this quote from the piece best sums up this idea of impeaching the President:

"You, I and Governor Palin can all believe Barack Obama willfully subverted the accepted spirit of American Jurisprudence to our heart’s content. However, a system that allowed for faith-based prosecution would be no more just than what happened to Brandon Eich. The same code of laws that makes the process of impeachment available demands the presumption of innocence even as it serves as a fulcrum to persecute the most disingenuous people to be brought before the courts."

Kudos to the author for this short but well-put piece.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Supreme Court Strikes Down President Obama's NLRB "Recess Appointees" - Told Ya So!

Probably one of the most important political news stories of the week (though not was well reported in the MSM as I would have thought..big surprise there), was the U.S. Supreme Court striking down President Obama's act of appointing of members to the National Labor Relations Board during a Senate recess well over two years ago.

At the time and to this day, President Obama claimed that while the Senate was holding formal meetings every three days or so back in 2012, they were REALLY in recess and thus he could appoint three new members to the NLRB as recess appointments.

Many folks (especially Republicans) immediately pointed out the rather radical idea that President Obama was ultimately making: He knows when the Senate is recess or not, not the Senate.

Heck, it was obvious that even a small-time blogger like myself pointed it out and openly denounced what the President was doing was wrong and illegal.

It took over two years, but the U.S. Supreme Court finally heard and decided this issue early this week:

"The court ruled 9-0 that Obama’s appointments were unconstitutional because the Senate was not truly in recess when he made them during a three-day break in pro forma meetings of the legislative body."
- Josh Gerstein of POLITICO
Sadly though, while the President was effectively "slapped down" in terms of what he can and can't do with his Executive authority, there is a catch to this ruling (isn't there always?).

While all nine justices agreed what the President did was an unconstitutional breach of authority, five of the nine justices decided to add something a little extra: a 10-day rule.

The majority decision found that any "recess" less than 10 days long was "presumptively too short" to allow an official recess appointment by the President. However, as the mores conservative wing of the court pointed out (led by Justice Scalia), this mention of an actual number of days could still be used for possible future abuse of the recess appointment authority of the President (regardless of who holds that office), and thus this mention of "10 days" effectively limited Congress's constitutional authority.

Regardless of the conservative wing of the Supreme Court's reservations, the ruling is still a major blow to President Obama and it could very likely put over 400 rulings/decisions made by the NLRB since 2012 in question.

The President, whether intentionally or not, greatly overstepped his bounds of authority in his actions over two years ago and now the Supreme Court has effectively "laid down the law"..But we'll have to wait and see if Justice Scalia's reservations over the majority's ruling come true..

It's too bad nobody warned the President about this possibility years ago..Oh wait, we did.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Pathetic Partisans Are Taking Over, by the Numbers via Pew Research Center

In my seconding posting from the Pew Research Center, we feature an article concerning how politically polarized the nation has become over the last decade or so.

I will leave the exact numbers to the good folks at PRC, but here's the short version:

While we often hear a great deal in the news about how politically polarized the nation has become, but it's always nice to see some numbers to back up that idea, and the numbers are not good.

Overall, the percentage of Americans who identify as being strongly liberal and strongly conservative have grown over the last decade or so, thus reducing the percentage of Americans who are in the middle (specifically, folks who swing left & right on a fairly equal number of issues). See this great graphic below to illustrate:

Mind you, while having the numbers from the PRC is helpful, we've already seen the signs of this polarization for years now. Here are few examples:

1. Tea Party- The largely successful rise of the Tea Party movement has, for better or worse, forced the GOP to move farther to the right than they traditional were before and while there is some resistance to this (the current "Establishment vs Tea Party" battle we are seeing within the GOP).

2. Death of the Blue Dogs- "Blue Dogs" was the common name for members of the Democratic party that while being largely loyal to their party, had some conservative views (they were generally lock-step with the Democrats on economic issues, but were socially conservative to varying degrees). Before the 2010 elections, there 54 members of the House of Representatives that belonged to this congressional coalition, but only 26 members "survived" the election. This coalition was weakened further in the 2012 elections and whether this coalition will survive the next few election cycles is hard to say..

3. Death of Compromise- As any American with a basic knowledge of American history knows, this nation's government was founded on the concept of compromise and without compromise, the Constitution would never have come into existence. Compromise today however, is seen by both sides are simply giving in to the other side (even if your side is actually getting something out of it), and is often used as political ammunition by the extremes of both parties to squeeze out those who dare advocate such a thing.

Now this sentiment isn't necessarily new, but the strength and pervasiveness of it has grown a great deal over the years. Nobody likes to compromise, but in the past it was always seen as a "necessary evil" to keep the government functioning and get things done.

It's not to say that ALL compromises are good, but to say that ALL compromise with the other side is bad is not only infantile, it's caused our government to grind to halt more times in recent years that in the decades that preceded. Today, the Senate Democrats are afraid to compromise with the GOP because they think it makes them look weak, even if they are the majority, and the same is true of Speaker Boehner in the House. Because of this, it seems that every major piece of legislation is cause for a huge partisan battle that will literally drag on for weeks, months, and even years.

Further, the lack of will for compromise has caused the two major parties to resort to extreme tactics to get their agendas passed because they refuse to work with the other side. Harry Reid has made quite a career of circumventing his GOP counterparts in the Senate, and while this makes him an effective Majority Leader int he Senate, it grows distrusts and outright hatred towards him by the GOP (with good reason)..

So is there a solution to this increasing polarization? Personally, I suspect the answer is no. With both parties being dominated and terrorized by the "Pathetic Partisans" on their extremes (thus making them the majority in time), the likelihood of them cooperating for the better of the whole nation falls with every election cycle...

Kudos again to the Pew Research Center for these great numbers!


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

A dug-in electorate bodes poorly for the Democrats in November

Kudos to Pew Research Center's Andrew Kohut for this "numbers piece" on the growing challenges the Democrats will have to pull any sort of victory this November for the mid-term elections.

Without giving too much away from the article, the President doesn't seem to be doing his fellow members of the Democratic party in Congress any favors in the polls..

A dug-in electorate bodes poorly for the Democrats in November

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

You Know You're a Pathetic Partisan When: RedState Contributor Fails Basic Reading Comp.

Pathetic Partisanship can lead a person to do some rather strange things...including failing basic reading comprehension and make a rather foolish assumption for the sake of critiquing the President.

Case in-point:

Frequent RedState contributor Moe Lane posted a piece this afternoon that mocked a recent political ad piece/tweet by the White House concerning the Equal Pay Act titled Barack Obama: historically ignorant AND astoundingly hypocritical. In the piece, "Moe" poked fun at the President's tweet by pointing out two apparent (to him at least) errors: That the President seems to think man walked on the moon in 1963 (the year the Equal Pay Act was signed) and that he is being rather hypocritical concerning this topic since the White House doesn't actually practice what it preaches (let me pause a second to let you all be astonished for a moment).



Simple title for possibly the most earth-shattering political story this year...

Kudos to POLITICO's Jake Sherman for this informative piece on one of today's biggest stories..

There are many "lessons learned" floating around concerning Congressman Cantor's stunning primary loss, but I think the most striking to me is this: Just because you're the leader of the GOP and a former ally of the Tea Party movement, does NOT mean you are safe (at least politically).

Personally, I'm always a big fan of "political chaos" (events in American politics that defy the natural order of things and make career politicians sweat) and this is an EXCELLENT example of such chaos..

Definitely want to keep your eye on this story!


All comments and/or opinions expressed in the above work are purely those of the author unless otherwise noted and do not represent that opinions/positions of any political or non-political organization or the Department of the Defense. Any/all distribution of this work MUST contain this disclaimer. 

Monday, May 26, 2014

14 Facts About Veterans Struggles and Triumphs You Didnt Know |

A great piece by IVN concerning military folks and veterans in America today!

14 Facts About Veterans Struggles and Triumphs You Didnt Know |

White House mistakenly reveals CIA officials name - Middle East - Stripes

Wasn't honestly which of my blogs this story best belonged it, but considering the total scope of this screw-up, I figure this is as good a place as any.

Without giving away too much to the story, the White House accidentally released the name of the top CIA official in Afghanistan in a list of officials President Obama would be meeting with when he made his surprise visit to Afghanistan over the weekend.

Obviously, this was a MASSIVE cock-up for the West Wing (I personally would suspect the Press Secretaries office since it was apparently released to press pool), and shouldn't be simply shrugged off as just an accident. I don't doubt it was an accident but the possible repercussions of this "accident" could be dramatic and deadly (for this CIA's official and for his loved ones). Not to mention it makes the West Wing look it's being run by a bunch of wet-behind-the-ears interns.

If I was the President, somebody's head would be rolling right about..yesterday.

In all likelihood, we'll never hear one way or another WHO exactly was responsible for this screw-up, lets just hope this serves as a lesson for the West Wing: when planning a surprise Presidential visit to a country full of people who don't like us, best NOT to release the name of the local spy master...

White House mistakenly reveals CIA officials name - Middle East - Stripes

Syrian rebels describe US-backed training in Qatar in new documentary - Middle East - Stripes

An interesting, and curiously timed, piece of news concerning US assistance to Syrian rebel forces via PBS's Frontline news program.

Syrian rebels describe US-backed training in Qatar in new documentary - Middle East - Stripes

Thoughts for Memorial Day | RedState

Thoughts for Memorial Day | RedState

Kudos to Daniel Horowitz for a fairly apolitical (for a RedState contributor at least) and straight to the point piece..

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

GOP candidate for Iowa's U.S. Senate seat NOT Quite the Conservative She Claims to Be?

Sadly I haven't been able to keep as close an eye on some of the most interesting political races back home in Iowa as I would have liked and thus haven't written much on the topic.

Thankfully though, other more dedicated political wonks have been keeping a close eye on arguably Iowa's most important political race this year: the race to replaced retiring U.S. Senator Tom Harkin.

The short version of this race is that the Democrat Bruce Braley is running largely uncontested for the Democratic nomination while the GOP has a wide-open field of potential candidates for the nomination.

Among those in the GOP field is State Senator Joni Ernst, who has earned praise and political support from the likes of the GOP Governor and Lt. Governor and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (which I will try hard not to hold against her..). She has also made quite a name for herself with her rather bold and "unique" TV ads that have helped to drive conservatives in Iowa towards her and sending her to the top of many of the polls.

But one has to wonder, given how obscure most local Iowa politicians are (especially their voting records), has anyone really vetted Ernst's conservative credentials?

Thankfully, Craig Robinson of The Iowa Republican dared to ask this question, and the answers he found may surprise many of those who have rather blindly thrown their support to Joni Ernst.

I won't give away too many details from Mr. Robinson's piece, but needless to say, the information he found on Joni Ernst's voting record did surprise me. Given how close we are the Iowa GOP primary (less than 4 weeks), the need to get accurate information out there to the voters so they can make an honest and informed vote is VITAL and kudos to Mr. Robinson for his efforts!

Is Joni Ernst the Proven Conservative Her TV Ads Make Her Out to Be? - The Iowa Republican

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Madison's Religious Test: The Supreme Court vs the Non-Cognizance Doctrine |

An interesting take on the Supreme Court's recent decision concerning public prayer at government-functions (whether local or federal level), and definitely NOT the kind of opinion well appreciated by some uber-partisans..Sounds like my kind of story!

Madison's Religious Test: The Supreme Court vs the Non-Cognizance Doctrine |

Fox's Greta Responds to Jon Stewart's Criticism over Benghazi Coverage...Sort of.

One of the stranger stories I have read today in politics is an apparent small "war of words" between Fox News' Greta Van Susteren and political pundit/satirist Jon Stewart over Fox's coverage of the Benghazi tragedy.

In Stewart's critique of Fox News, he more or less made the point that while Fox News has been quick and very faithful in its intensive coverage over the various faults the Obama administration committed with its handling of the Benghazi terrorist attack, they weren't remotely as interested in the various intelligence screw-ups of the Bush administration.

Today in Iowa Politics via POLITICO: Super PAC hits Mark Jacobs as ‘Texas millionaire’

Super PAC hits Mark Jacobs as ‘Texas millionaire’

Monday, May 5, 2014

Comparing ObamaCare Sign-up to Nazi "Train Rides"..Must be TWIT OF THE WEEK!

First, I want to apologize for my lack of post as of late. I have a lot of reasons (aka excuses) for why I haven't posted any political stories/pieces, ranging from duty-related work to lack of inspiration. However, I hope to change all that in the weeks to come. I can't promise that I will always be able to regularly post here but I will certainly try my best in the near future..

To celebrate my return to blogging, I have decided to revive an old tradition I would have here, honoring the top "Twit" in news recently.