Ill be joining forces with a few others- the website will be announced soon. Until then Ill hold tight and not post any more content.
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**This is a preliminary report, as we are still going over the data, cross checking FEC disclosures with information obtained from OpenSecrets.org. If you would like to see the data set, message this blog.**
There is a lot of talk in DC about what will happen if the GOP takes control of the senate, and gains more seats in the house. Seeing as how 70 republicans need to buck the leadership over immigration, there will either be a change in leadership, or the GOP will part ways with conservatives. This author has a hunch that the GOP took the first steps in having this happen in the 2012 election. Based on a hunch, we did this research project. By next week we hope to sort out which candidates in the NRCC’s Young Gun program were conservative, or just plain old RINOs. Regardless, we have to bring attention to the fact that the program was not successful, and resulted in the waste of precious resources.
The Young Guns Program was formed and headed by Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA), Majority Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Budget Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI). Its stated mission was to help:
Republican candidates to build strong and winning campaigns through goals, benchmarks, and accountability. In 2010, 62 of more than 90 Young Guns candidates were elected to the US House of Representatives helping Republicans win the majority. Every Young Guns candidate plays a vital role in keeping our Republican team on offense and helps build a lasting and productive Republican Majority for the American people.
In 2012, NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions (R-TX) and Co-Founders Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), Majority Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Budget Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), managed the Young Guns program with the goal of making “the Republican half of the House floor standing room only with the need for the Sergeant of Arms to bring in folding chairs in the aisles to accommodate our new membership.”
The results of this program set out by the NRCC and the House Majority leadership was disastrous, with only an overall 44% success rate. Seventy-Five candidates were run, with only 33 winning their races. More victories came from the second-tier ranking system the NRCC set out than their first tier candidates. This probably is a result of ranking based off of a candidate’s ability to fundraise, instead of the candidate’s ability to attract district attention, likelihood of regional victory, and the general local political climate.
There were Four Levels of membership in the program were:
1) Young Gun
Young Gun is the top tier of the ‘Young Gun’ recruitment program. These candidates have met a series of rigorous goals and established a clear path to victory through their ability to build a formidable campaign structure and achieve important goals and benchmarks. These candidates are the GOP’s best opportunities.
- There were 42 candidates listed as Young Guns.
- Only 13 Young Gun candidates won; this tier had a 31% success rate.
- Of 13, 5 Young Gun victories were in the South, and one in Republican North Dakota
- 5 victories received more than 13% of the vote: 1 in CA, one in ND, 2 in the South, and one in Ohio.
- 9 races lost by more than 10% of the vote. These top 9 losses accounted for a total of $715,410 in expenditures by the National Republican Congressional Committee.
- Of the $2,966,644 spent in all on campaigns, $2,387,094 was spent on losing campaigns, while only $579,018 was spent on successful campaigns. (one donation of $532 was made to another tier candidate).
- Half of the losing races were from New England, Iowa (2), California (2), and Colorado.
- Of the 15 races where the victor won by fewer than 4%, only five went to Republicans. The program had only a 1/3 success rate in close races.
The definition of the word Vanguard is “the leading edge of a movement”. The Vanguard program provides a framework for the NRCC to assist candidates running in Republican-favored seats as they head into the fall election season. Its goal is to form a lasting relationship between likely future members of Congress, the NRCC and the House GOP Conference.
- 21 candidates were listed as Vanguards.
- 20 Vanguard candidates won, at a 95% success rate.
- The only candidate in this category to lose was Doug LaMalfa (CA-26), having received only 41% of the vote (losing by 39,000).
Contender is the third level of the Young Guns program. These candidates have met more stringent fundamental goals and benchmarks and have developed a “mature” campaign operation. They are in seats that appear to favor the GOP candidate and are established on the road to victory.
- 3 candidates were listed as Contenders.
- NO candidate listed as a contender won.
4) On the Radar
Once candidates are enrolled in the program, they become eligible to advance to On the Radar, the second level of the Young Guns program. These candidates have met the minimum threshold in campaign organization and are prepared to advance to more difficult goals throughout the cycle. They are in seats of interest to the NRCC.
- 9 candidates were listed as On the Radar.
- No candidate listed as On the Radar won.
In total, losses came from the following regions: 13 from the pacific coast, 8 from New England, 7 from Rocky Mountain/western states, 6 from the south, and 3 from the Midwest.
Check back for updates.
War in the middle east. It’s happening again for the United States (lets see, this will be the first, second, third, fourth, no fifth intervention in the U.S. since 9/11/01). First we went into A-stan, then Iraq, fooled around during the Spring in Egypt and Libya. In an unprecedented (am I kidding?) turn of events, the government refused to back a legitimate people-led revolt in Iran, even though we know that of all middle-eastern countries, Persia/Iran’s youth are the most pro-western. Now folks are bringing out the drummer boys to get ready to rock and roll into Syria. Why?
Why is a good question. Officials claim we must intervene because Assad used chemical weapons that killed his own people. To be exact, 150 were killed with chemical weapons. In a war where 93,000 have died from good ol’ n0-intervention-necessary bullets and rockets. So predictable though- we are going to go there, establish a no-fly zone, and most likely have boots on the ground within 6 months. How do I know? We have history to thank for that, and the fact that Congress tipped their hand when they suddenly cared about 150 people/93,000.
The history I refer to is the tendency of wars to give in to Mission Creep. It’s what happens when one day you decide your garage is no longer going to store your car, but instead protect your gym equipment. A year later you have a full-on mancave with a minibar, flat screen tv, a couch, and a pool table.
Mission Creep matters as the U.S. has a history of doing this with it’s wars, going back to the Spanish American war in 1898 (we can go further, but lets stay somewhat focused). Here are a couple of wars (I did not include our minor interventions) over the last 115 years, with a short blurb on the mission creep that happened.
- Spanish American War:what started over a spat in Cuba (where the Cubans wanted independence from Spain) ended up with the United States obtaining colonial authority over Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines, effectively making the United States an empire. For roughly 50 years we were still well entrenched in Cuban domestic affairs, and the Philippines became independent in 1946. Notice that we are still occupying Guam, and holding Puerto Rico as territories to this day.
- World War I: the United States started out bankrolling both sides. While most are told we went to war because the Germans sunk a (British) ship and killed Americans, we had been bankrolling the Brits and supplying arms under the table for a long time, and some dead Americans on foreign ships made a good excuse to go all in.
- World War II: started out as a war to liberate and conquer, ended up with the United States nation-building, setting up alliances, providing for the defense of Europe, and never leaving. Even after The Wall came down.
- Korea: started as an international effort to block communist expansion, ended up with the United States pulling border security 60 years later.
- Vietnam: started out with aid to South Vietnam and patrolling the Gulf of Tonkin. One day in 1964 some communist “patrol boats” attacked the USS Maddox. Two days later it was alleged the US Navy was attacked again, although declassified reports now say it was completely made up. At that point it was time for WAR, and 9 years later we were evacuating tens of thousands of refugees while Saigon fell, and 60,000 Americans lay dead because the United States was too cowardly to actually cross into North Vietnam and hit the enemy at home.
- Iraq I: what started as a liberation party ended up as a 12 year operation to maintain no-fly zones, while watching thousands of Iraqis get killed (ones that we promised to back up if they revolted against Saddam- notice the difference between then and now).
- Iraq II: started out as an operation to find WMD, get it out of the area, and shut down the torture chambers. A decade later we have wasted billions on setting up a government that now has a security agreement with Iran to fight against the United States in the event of war. Thanks W.
- Afghanistan: same as Iraq, except we had a real reason to go there- they attacked us. At first we were supposed to topple the Taliban and Al Qaeda (the same Al Qaeda we are funding and arming in Egypt, Libya, Syria, and probably the next country to go up in flames). Then we were supposed to democratize the country. Now we are trying to build an economy with modern infrastructure, along with the workings of a modern bureaucratic system where the unbroken tradition for thousands of years was to deal with issues at the tribal level, and to kill all dissenters. Its working out well (sarcasm).
So sleep well knowing that this has happened before, and one day your grand child will be patrolling the same land you fought on, fighting the same battle, and that nothing will change. Its your fault too, since you keep on electing these people.
A recent poll has found that Fifty-seven percent (57%) of voters nationwide “believe it is likely the NSA data will be used to harass political opponents. So far the NSA has not commented as to whether or not they have queried data to confirm that statistic.
Is this a baseless concern? Over at CBS, reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s computer was discovered to have been hacked. According to CBS, “forensic analysis revealed an intruder had executed commands that appeared to involve search and [removal] of data. This party also used sophisticated methods to remove all possible indications of unauthorized activity, and alter system times to cause further confusion.”
If you recall, Attkisson was the one that pressed the administration on Operation Fast and Furious and Benghazi. Certainly one could say she was an enemy of the administration, and anyone else trying to keep stones from being turned over.
The Technical Side of Storing Personal Data
Forget about the who, what, and why for a moment, and lets focus on the how. It seems impossible that the government can track your IP address, telephone, history of snail mail use, along with comments posted on the internet. But it is not. Numerous banks, companies, and foundations use constituent database programs that have thousands of functions, and are designed to collect data on every part of your life. In fact, state and federal government law makers use constituent contact systems that provide information of all those in their districts. (The government programs go off of voting registration records and public documents filed).
Using databases like Lexis, an organization can use a program offered by a company like Blackbaud to store any available information about a potential, or current donor/constituent. Nearly every foundation, university, and charity does this in through their development arm. Why? It allows them to exploit information when they make calls or visits to gather money. It’s a pretty basic marketing technique- appeal to your client’s interest, and stroke their ego. Make them feel important.
What does that have to do with the NSA? Easy- the technology exists for one mass database to exist, whereby information from various sources and agencies can be imported. Here is how the operation would look like
- Each person would have an individual file based on a unique identifier, which is easy due to the common usage of social security and drivers’ license numbers.
- The database fields would be pre-programmed/coded to file certain information under various tabs. For instance, in each person’s record, there could tabs or sections relating to phone records, email records, snail mail records, etc.
- An agency regularly imports information to the program, which uses the coding to sort the data and file it into its appropriate record.
- When a person is flagged as suspicious, all that is left is to query information relating to that person, and then you have everything on that individual.
One big problem is how this is done at a massive scale, with massive amounts of information, and performed regularly. That’s a big hump to overcome, but it seems that data centers in Utah are meant to solve that problem. The fact remains is that this data is being collected, but we don’t know how its being organized, if at all. Even if it is not organized, the data can still be queried using known information about the person, which means they will search through all their files for information that matches what they put in the search box. That takes a lot of processing power and time, but its possible.
A Long History of the Establishment Spying on Opponents
Many have heard about COINTELPRO, and the activities the Nixon administration took against political dissidents. What many don’t know is that the FBI had throughout its history documented dissident political groups, and for 15 years operated the counter intelligence program, a series of projects collectively referred to as COINTELPRO. While some organizations under FBI scrutiny were legitimate threats, such as the SDS, scrutiny was used under Nixon to undermine opponents of not only his administration, but of the political establishment. In investigating the FBI, the Church committee also revealed that the anti-communist John Birch Society and Christian Action Council were among targeted organizations.
Between 1960 and 1974, over on one million Americans were being spied on by the FBI, and of 500,000 “subversives” that were investigated, there was not one court conviction. In one year alone, the FBI had opened 65,000 domestic files. Fast-forward to present day, and we see that not only has the government continued to carry out these programs, but they have clearly amplified the amount of scrutiny and harassment they are willing to openly commit upon the citizens of this nation.
In light of the PRISM program, the government spying on varying news agencies including AP, and the IRS scandals, we can determine that there is something awry. It seems as if the political establishment has grown accustomed to spying on their rivals, even using official means to do so when in power.
It is quite normal for political groups to keep tabs on each other. Rightwingwatch.com, a project of People for the American Way, keeps track of over 600 conservative organizations, news site, committees, etc., as well as over 1,000 government officials, sports stars, and private citizens. Media Matters has also made graphics of the interconnectedness of the conservative movement, while Glenn Beck is famous for his research on the interconnectedness of organizations on the left.
There is one difference: the left has power, controls the Presidency, has the majority and controls the leadership in the Senate, and controls the leadership of the minority in the House. They also control the bureaucracy, which includes the NSA, CIA, FBI, DOJ, DHS, EPA and the IRS. Keep in mind they control the unions that staff these agencies. Did I forget to mention the left-wing’s control of our universities? Of the aforementioned agencies, two have direct evidence implicating them in acquiring and releasing private information of citizens to leftist groups. The others are known to keep records on the activities of all Americans, including: phone calls, emails, facebook and twitter posts.
Not only are conservatives being targeted, but so are those on the left. In fact, the ACLU has just filed suit against the FBI on behalf of AntiWar, alleging that the FBI had spied on its editors. Back in 2006, the ACLU also sued the FBI for spying on members of the anti-war Thomas Merton Center for Peace & Justice, based solely on their political stances. However, these organizations are secondary targets which broke rank with the Obama agenda.
The true primary targets are the conservative organizations that not only oppose this administration, but are also opposed to the political elites in Washington, and the programs instituted by many (and most) high level bureaucratic agencies. In their first step to identify targets, in 2009 the Department of Homeland Security under Secretary Janet Napolitano labeled as potential domestic terrorists “right wing extremists,” which comprised of veterans, supporters of limited government, the constitution, and those opposed to abortion and immigration.
Now we know the IRS targeted 300 conservative and right leaning grass-roots organizations, as well as their donors. In their request forms, the IRS had asked for lists of donors, the employment histories for current employees and along with their families, and even of their former interns. The Leadership Institute alone provided over 23,000 pages of documents over one year in order to comply with IRS requests.
In all, we know that the government has a history of targeting political dissidents, and that the current government has hundreds of thousands of pages with lists of employees, donors, interns, and the inner workings of political dissident groups. And that is just the IRS. Numerous other agencies have the cell phone records, emails, and everything else everyone has ever done on their servers.
It is definitely within the means of the government to map out dissident organizations, and then harass and exploit the organizations and members in order to comply and accept government policies. The essence of counter-intelligence/intelligence operations is in fact to gather information for the sole purpose of exploitation, as is what happened under COINTELPRO.
That begs the question- what is the purpose of the government gathering this data? Is the government trying to merely conduct harassing actions against dissidents, or is it attempting to map out dissident (read conservative) organizations which threaten their agenda, so that they can undermine political opposition and retain power?
A few years ago, James Dobson made some interesting predictions about the Obama presidency in his “letter from 2012 in Obama’s America.” The Huffington Post blasted the letter, saying it offered “nothing but fear,” which is the only leftist argument against Christians getting involved in politics- that they are reacting on fear.
So, we must look to see how accurate Mr. Dobson was in his predictions. I believe you will find this letter under the “I told you so” sub-file of the “lessons not learned from history” folder.
- Increased Budget Deficits -Check
- Boycotts against Christian companies -Check
- Prohibit domestic energy production. – Keystone pipeline, anyone?
- Higher Taxes – obvious
- Advocacy of Fairness Doctrine to control talk radio – look at the first year of the first term
- Passage of gun bans – boy aren’t they trying
- Unions holding companies hostage – Check
- Homosexuals in military – Check
- Limited healthcare – Anyone remember the girl who received the lung transplant?
- Destruction of the Boy Scouts of America – Happening live
- Turn against Israel -Check
- Deepened ties with communists in South America – Check
- Hostility with Russia -Check (our policies re Africa, Syria, Iran, etc)
- Iraq turning against America -Check (their security agreement with Iran)
- Forcing gender identity classes from elementary school on – Check
- Attacking home schooling families -check
- Increased abortions -check
- End of parental involvement in abortion -check
- Force religious organizations to hire gays/use facilities -check
- Attacks on christian counselors -check
- Attacking Christian ministries on college campuses -check
- Attacking school prayer -check
- Increased sexual content on media during primetime -check
Today is Flag Day, and the birthday of the army. If you haven’t noticed it yet, the ‘murica! Ronald-Reagan-is-the-best types are having one hell of a day, not realizing their celebrations are making them complete hypocrites in that they are betraying the values they purport to uphold. It has been a peeve to me for a long time, but today brings up the issue of the Pledge of Allegiance. So behold this inter-tangled rant that takes on the establishment position on the Pledge and our Flag.
Who would ever have a problem with the Pledge?
There are many Christians who believe that fellow believers should not recite the pledge, for various reasons. One Christian commentator, RC Sproul Jr., noted that this nation is no longer the Republic it was designed to be, and likewise, the people have changed. Rather than a nation which claims in its pledge to be under God, the policies of the government directly conflicts with God, and is rebellious towards God’s authority.
RC Sproul also comments that the notion we are “indivisible” is not only untrue, but misleading, and is also a “claim that the union is immortal, a claim to deity.” Mr. Sproul questions the “claim that ours is a nation where there is liberty and justice for all.” Raising many valid points, Sproul asks:
Is that true? Are we free to work in the field of our choice, without a license from the state? Are we at liberty to build a shed in our back yard, without getting a permit from the state? Are we free to not purchase health insurance for our employees? Are we free to keep the fruits of our labor?
Does the flag stand for, represent those founding virtues, or does it now represent a nation where every year over a million of our tiniest citizens are not just denied liberty and justice, but life itself? Does not that flag represent both a state which is pledged to protect the “right” to murder the unborn, and does it not represent the citizens of that nation who avail themselves of that right over 3000 times each day?
As with RC, I am too ashamed of where this nation has ended up. Like Mr. Sproul, I am a Christian, and believe that our allegiance should be to God. We differ on one point, though: while I do support the ideas of pledges in our own political realm, I would limit that to a sense of values and principles, not to entities and their symbols.
Today at World Net Daily, Major General Patrick Brady, speaking solely on our flag (it is Flag Day), argues “the flag embodies the values embedded in our sacred Constitution. The legalized desecration of the symbol of the Constitution symbolizes the ongoing desecration of our Constitution.”
I do not agree. Our flag has changed continuously throughout its history, ironically just like interpretations and amendments to our constitution! The flag represents the legal entity that came together to under aforementioned constitution, and by that association, I do cede that the General is correct. As a nation, though, we have ignored, forgotten, and made a deliberate about-face against the fundamentals of our Republic. Let’s not pretend that the flag, “or the government for which it stands” still upholds and carries out these values.
What is telling, and even more troubling, are the attitude General Brady expresses at the end of his piece:
“I would not serve in a quad-sexual military, nor would I encourage any young person to enlist in today’s military. I would give my life for the country and military I served. I would not give one drop of blood for the country and military we are becoming. Hopefully, on this birthday of our Army and our flag, Americans will pray that the disasters of this presidency will be reversed.”
Unfortunately this sentiment is all too common by the veterans I know and grew up around.
What about non-Christians supporting the Pledge?
I urge all free thinkers to consider the following. Our pledge was written by Francis Bellamy in 1892. Bellamy, and his family were socialists. His cousin, Edward Bellamy, authored Looking Backward (1888) and Equality (1897) (look those up). Francis supported the idea of planned economies, with distribution of wealth. In fact, his ideas were so crazy he was forced to leave his church in Boston. Daniel Ford, a friend of Francis, hired him to write for The Youth’s Companion.
James Upham, Bellamy’s boss at Youth’s Companion one day had the idea to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Columbus Day at the Chicago World’s Fair, and wanted to highlight the public education system in America as being the “democratizing force in American life.” Just one problem: he needed something to capture this idea and inspire others. Thus the Pledge was born, with the original words as follows:
I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.’ He considered placing the word, ‘equality,’ in his Pledge, but knew that the state superintendents of education on his committee were against equality for women and African Americans.
In 1919, states started making recitation mandatory. Jehovah’s Witnesses sued, eventually losing at the Supreme Court. Afterwards, the indivisible people committed brutal acts against practitioners of the religious sect, including tar and feathering, castration, and public beatings. I guess it was permissible then though, as “under God” had not yet been added.
At this Point, What Difference Does it Make?
One must care about the origin of the pledge. It was written to conjure up feelings of unity under one banner, and one government. Instead of allegiances to values, states, localities, we were supposed to be one people that loved our dear federal government. The author intended to use the pledge to advance the ideas of socialism and redistribution. Every time we stand up to recite the pledge, we do so to the symbol of the state. A state that has differing policies over time, and that often contradict each other. One day we are fighting for “freedom” abroad, while the next we are wiretapping all Americans here at home and encouraging abortions. And you just pledged your allegiance to the entity that makes and enforces those laws.
Do you feel stupid now? You should.
made you look
Only in a society as twisted as America can a non-victim claim victimhood, and in order to retaliate against the creators of a great non-injustice, prove the oppressors right. Case in point: 19 year old Valerie Dodds from Lincoln, Nebraska. She graduated from St. Pius X High School last year, but don’t let her Catholic education fool you. Valerie, or shall we say Val Midwest, has always wanted to be a porn star, which is something that her devout fellow students did not think proper of a graduate from their school.
Poor Val had it so tough. While most gals refer to bullying as having “sext” messages posted online and spread about the school, Val cut out the middleman and distributed her own nude pictures online. Naturally this brought a response from the mean kids at Pius X. They made comments. Probably akin to what el Rushbo originally said about Sandra Fluke. I’ll take the longshot and say someone may have alleged she engaged in a trade of personal services for profit, and while finding pleasure in doing so.
“All the Pius kids were saying mean things and I decided to go there and show them that I am here to stay,” and she sure did show them… more pictures of herself. That is correct. To protect her honor and dignity after being called out for being a porn star, she decided to head to Pius X and take nude photos of herself, and then “pleasured herself with sex toys and a crucifix” while there.
This act has brought her legal woes but that is not the point of this article. The point is that this is a ridiculous event that shows the decline of all things decent in society. One would think that a porn star would take pride in being called names that accurately describe her profession, or at least not care about what others have to say. But lets face it, you are still a child, as is evident by your actions, and the fact you are being used by a “producer” that is most likely twice your age. We get it, you are now legally an adult, and you are excited that you can do the things you wanted to do legally now. However, that does not mean you go into the public view, or trespass onto property, in order to desecrate and offend others, and then deliberately post those pictures on the internet. You especially don’t claim to be a victim after you have done so.