Archive for April, 2015

Republicans Must Approach Poverty With Empathy

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

From Raw Story:

“Republican Maryland state Delegate Patrick McDonough suggested this week that parents did not deserve to continue receiving food stamps if they refused to stop their children from protesting the death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore.

In audio obtain by First Look’s Lee Fang, a caller on a Baltimore radio program asks McDonough why the government could not “take away benefits from families, from like the parents who are collecting welfare” if the protesters were “too young.”

“That’s an idea and that could be legislation,” McDonough volunteers. “I think that you could make the case that there is a failure to do proper parenting and allowing this stuff to happen, is there an opportunity for a month to take away your food stamps?”

When I see ignorant drivel like this from an elected official who belongs to the same party I do, I am embarrassed to be a Republican. What good can come of targeting those with the least access to opportunity? How is it helpful to call them part of a “thug nation?” How can the GOP be taken seriously when it supports corporate welfare, yet treats the indigent like waste to be cast aside? (Which Democrats do too, by the way, they just couch their terrible policies in nicer rhetoric).

Why not be a Republican who tells the truth about how BIG GOVERNMENT has created a wasteland? Why not be honest about the fact that Democratic policies are at the root of why people are dependent on government and literally don’t have access to the type of free market that would give them the opportunity to lift themselves out of poverty? Why trade in hate instead of empathy? Why give Democrats the fodder necessary to further perpetuate the poverty their polices have wrought?

I am a Republican because indisputable facts prove that those with the most access to economic freedom thrive. There are Americans, especially in our urban centers, who have languished under policies the Democratic Party has supported for countless decades. Do you think anybody wants to be dependent on government? Why shame people without access to opportunity instead of showing them what’s possible?

There is another way for those most in need. A way predicated on freedom and opportunity. We can bring this positive message into the urban cores of our nation in a variety of manners, but it’s impossible to even have this conversation when Republicans seemingly come from a place of hate rather than empathy.

This needs to change, and it needs to change now.

Cruz, Paul, and Perspective

Thursday, April 9th, 2015

As a libertarian who worked very hard to bring my fellow travelers into the Ted Cruz for Senate camp in the primary and runoff, I’m a little disturbed by the way I see some Cruz for President supporters currently treating both libertarians and Rand Paul, especially in my home state of Texas.

Make no mistake: Without the help of the Paul family and the grassroots activists who align with them, Ted Cruz would NOT have had a base broad enough to force Dewhurst into a runoff and garner his ultimate win. We were indispensable. This is something Senator Cruz himself has acknowledged, and anybody with a real understanding of the campaign knows that. There’s a reason Cruz’s camp pushed his endorsement from Senator Paul as hard as they did, and hired former Paul staffers.

In the Spring of 2012, I wrote a piece in The Daily Caller entitled “Ted Cruz Can Unite the Right.” Now, it feels like many of his supporters want to steamroll over a significant portion of the people who got Senator Cruz to where he is today, and I have to admit, it hurts me on a personal level. That type of behavior is a very good way to burn the bridges you crossed to get where you currently stand; a risky behavior, indeed.

To be clear, this actually isn’t a criticism of Senator Cruz himself. I think for the most part, he’s been pretty classy, and I still count many of his supporters, especially staff, among my good friends. What I’m bothered by is both a lack of respect for people who were there from day one, and a weird focus on trying to destroy Senator Paul when the GOP establishment and Hillary Clinton are much bigger problems.

I understand that presidential primaries will inevitably get nasty. I also realize that there are Rand Paul supporters who need to work on their behavior as well. Believe me, I really do know that all too well, and anyone who follows me is aware of the fact that I spend plenty of time “policing my own,” so to speak. But there’s something very disturbing about some of the attitudes I’m seeing here in Texas. We all ought to know better.

Remember, Tea Partiers (a group I’ve been very intimately associated with): Rand Paul was elected in the 2010 wave. He and mostly Mike Lee, laid the groundwork for Ted. Rand Paul is far from an enemy; you owe him big time for Ted’s ability to even run for President at all. It’s also important to remember that at the end of the day, we’d all want Ted or Rand before someone like Jeb Bush. Perspective: It’s important.