Monday, March 26, 2012

Democratically Rebuilding Congress

The 2012 Congressional elections will indeed be strange. Many incumbents of the worst Congresses in our nation’s history will have the nerve to try to convince you to re-elect them. It is critical that those who have contributed to the abysmal 9% approval rating of the 112th Congress are not returned to office.

This election is our first chance to begin the path to a productive Congress. Unfortunately the process that is in place was designed to greatly favor the candidates of the two political parties that failed us in the first place. Our two party system offers only one individual to serious consider for replacing a incumbent. If you are fortunate there might also be some occasional seriously underfunded independent candidates.

It may take several election cycles until we have a Congress that will make the necessary reforms. This makes the quality of those that are selected this time extremely important. It will set serious standards for our future. A strong statement by the voters will certainly speed up the transition.

What are the characteristics a replacement candidate Senator or Congressman should show? For starters, basic intelligence, honesty and a respect for truth will go a long way. A dishonest campaign is a marker for a dishonest candidate. Criticism of an opponent should be factual and specific. A campaign based on deceit and half truths must be rejected.

I personally intend to also look for these addional characteristics:

Strong intentions to solve the country’s problems and improve quality of life by actions. Not a bean counter in full retreat.

Strong supporter of bi-partisan actions that support the goals covered in the introduction to the Constitution, regardless of party or special interest implications.

Dedicated to ending money and introduce qualifications as controlling factors in our democracy.

Willingness to study and understand the basics of our current financial system as preparation for knowledgeable reform.

Supports a long term plan to reduce deficits when the economy stabilizes.

Supports conducting a public review with the subsequent elimination of inefficient Congressional administrative practices.

End special privileges for Congressional, Judicial, and Administration staff.
Will I find candidates who meet my criteria? I hope so. They would certainly go a long ways toward ending the Congressional management disasters well recognized by conservatives, moderates, and liberals alike. Maybe we then could turn this ship away from the existing governing icebergs that endanger us all.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Support of UN Small Arms Treaty Will Cost Democrats Plenty of Votes

One of the prevailing strengths of the Republican Party, (but not all Republicans) has been its support for the very popular 2nd Amendment. This is the amendment that protects the right of American citizens to keep and bear arms. Our founders insisted upon it to approve the original constitution. It is uniquely American. Unlike many of the other amendments this is one about which that the public remains adamant. They are not going to surrender the rights it grants to an inept elected government. Pro-control Democrats, however, do not seem to realize to what extent this is true. It may cost the party dearly in the next election.


Governments, dictators, and kings have always feared citizen access to firearms. The US Constitution is unique among nations in that citizen ownership of firearms is protected. However, there is a small and insistent element of the US and global establishment that has continually attempted to weaken this amendment by generally ignoring it. Supreme Court decisions which reinforce the power of the amendment are putting an end to this practice.

As citizen confidence in the elected government has plummeted the right to keep and bear arms has gained soaring strength with the citizens. 2011 was a record year for US firearm sales to civilians. In spite of biased support from the main stream media advocating increased firearm control remains political suicide for politicians in all but a very few states. This is one area where the people are drawing the line against a self serving government. A recent Gallup poll showed that 70% of the population opposes any further attempts by the government at gun control.

Wrong Actions

Unfortunately the destruction of this amendment has become a hardened goal of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party. Years ago a damaging quote from a prominent California Democratic Senator, (Dianne Feinstein), shocked a lot of Americans. She said that she looked forward to the day that only the police and military would have access to firearms. She would bide her time until that was politically possible. She is still a Senator and those statements have not been rescinded by the party..

Unable to elect a Congress that will serve their purpose, a new attempt is being made by the anti-2nd Amendment throng. It is through the forthcoming UN treaty on small arms. Although the draft is not yet officially released it is described by this article in Forbes Magazine. You can see that the elements which have been successfully defeated in the US are prominent in the proposed treaty.

The National Rifle Association has over 4 million members while what is left of the Brady anti firearm organization is almost negligible. In no way do any anti-gun organizations approach the energy or membership of the NRA and the several other organizations supporting protection of the 2nd amendment. They include many citizens who would normally be voting Democratic but now vote Republican. Opposing the 2nd amendment is an obvious losing proposition for the Democrats –but they continue to do so.

The Results

The Constitution wisely requires a two thirds approval vote by the Senate to ratify a treaty. The current Congress is strongly against granting the UN any authority over the 2nd amendment. 45 Republican and 12 Democratic senators have already signed a letter saying that they will not approve of any treaty that infringes upon American gun rights. But strangely, the UN small arms treaty program remains supported by the Obama administration. It is being reported that Clinton has promised to take the treaty before the US Senate.

A Sportsman site has been established and recommended by Guns and Ammo magazine with the goal of leading a balanced discussion and review of Presidential candidates’ position on sportsman issues. It appeared to be an opportunity for the Democrats to start to shed their anti-2nd amendment reputation by distancing themselves from the treaty and showing respect for the 2nd amendment. They would be in a much stronger position by focusing on other critical issues such as jobs and energy.

Their support of the UN small arms treaty proposal eliminates this possibility. The American citizens will not cede any control of the 2nd amendment to the UN. Support of the treaty by the administration will further mark it as anti-2nd amendment. No amount of spin can reverse that. It will work against the positives that the Democratic Party should be pursuing and create additional momentum for the Republicans.

An opportunity missed and now gone.