Ideas for the Republican Party

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

This past week I received a letter soliciting funds for the National Republican Party. Give once and you are on their mailing list forever! It had the usual questionnaire included -- the one you are supposed to fill out to determine the future course of action for the party. In looking it over it appeared to me that the Republican Party is the party of NO, no to every Democrat initiative, program or piece of legislation.

Now my political ideology tends to run to the negative for most of the Democrats favored pieces of legislation, no to their healthcare initiative, no to Cap and Trade, no to expanded welfare payments, no to increasing the national debt through another stimulus program but gee where are the Republican initiatives -- what does the party stand for? Surely we are more than the party of NO.

I'll admit that I registered Republican upon reaching the age of majority and have voted in every election since I earned the right in 1958. Did I vote the straight Republican ticket every time? Not by a long shot, as I tried to select the best candidate for the office. Memorably I have been burned a couple times, Jimmy Carter for one, as I thought his military experience would have taught him better and Ben Nelson, who really let me down recently with his vote for socialized medicine. I also voted for Richard Nixon, who turned out to not be very good at stealing Democrat secrets!

Why am I a Republican? I suppose it is because my dad was a Republican and I grew up hearing his objections to tax-and-spend Democrats. Besides that, the Republican philosophy of smaller government, strong national defense and unshackling business through lower taxes just seems to fit my way of thinking.

Therefore, in the spirit of trying to remake the Republican Party to be more acceptable to the vast majority of freedom-loving Americans who favor morally upright politicians to represent their best interests I offered the following:

* Abide by the U.S. Constitution as written.

* Eliminate all earmarks and federal grant programs. An office holder who accepts a bribe or gives one, for an example any earmark, shall be forced out of office. All "gifts" and special favors are to be accounted for and the office holder must make that record readily available for public inspection.

* Stop deficit spending. (Adopting Nebraska's plan of a required balanced budget is a good start)

* Adopt term limits (as we do for the President) for all federal elected offices. Eliminate all federal pension plans for elected office holders -- Social Security is adequate. If they want to participate in a 501K arrangement with no employer match, that is fine. Medicare will be the total health care insurance plan provided by their employer.

* Marriage is defined as a contract between a man and a woman -- only.

* Get out of any nationalized business, for instance "government motors -- the former GM and Chrysler Corp."

* Get out of the insurance business, especially Freddy Mac, Fannie Mae, AIG and definitely medical insurance.

* Abolish the estate tax and graduated income tax. All Americans should have the privilege of paying taxes and a level income tax for all would work just fine.

* Social Security and Medicare should pay their own way, no federal subsidy and no dipping into the funds for unrelated payments. Let the states do Medicaid if they desire.

* Abide by legal immigration law. Create a temporary guest worker program with no amnesty provision.

* Tort reform! Strictly limit punitive awards. (I was sad when my Democrat friend Biff Morrison explained that he moved from Nebraska to practice law because Montana had no punitive award limits and Nebraska does which limited his lawyer income!)

* Restrict environmental regulations so as to encourage domestic energy development and wean us off foreign oil.

* Eliminate the Departments of Education, Labor and Homeland Security. Teachers' unions and useful education of students is not a good mix! No taxpayer-supported organization, police, fire, government employees of any stripe, should be allowed to form or participate in a union.

* Reform election law to limit special interest payments to all candidates running for office.

I am sure that each of you readers could add more. All we want are honest politicians that will represent the interests of an informed electorate.

In may be instructive to read a passage penned by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon:

"To be governed is to be watched, inspected, spied upon, directed, law-driven, numbered, regulated, enrolled, indoctrinated, preached at, controlled, checked, estimated, valued, censured, commanded, by creatures who have neither the right nor the wisdom nor the virtue to do so. To be governed is to be at every operation, at every transaction noted, registered, counted, taxed, stamped, measured, numbered, assessed, licensed, authorized, admonished, prevented, forbidden, reformed, corrected, punished. It is under pretext of public utility, and in the name of the general interest, to be placed(d) under contribution, drilled, fleeced, exploited, monopolized, extorted from, squeezed, hoaxed, robbed; then at the slightest resistance, the first word of complaint, to be repressed, fined, vilified, harassed, hunted down, abused, clubbed, disarmed, bound, choked, imprisoned, judged, condemned, shot, deported, sacrificed, sold, betrayed; and to crown all, mocked, ridiculed, derided, outraged, dishonored."

Whew, all that and Proudhon, a Frenchman who died in 1865, never had a chance to live in the socialist state envisioned by liberal leaning President Barack Obama. But then Mike and Garnet probably look forward to his vision of utopia.

That is the way I saw it.

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  • Proudhon is described in Wikipedia as: 'French socialist-anarchist. To his own question, "What is property?", Proudhon answered famously, "Property is theft!". Proudhon called for a complete reorganization of modern society that abolished most of its trappings - including money and the state itself. He advocated communitarianism as the form of reorganization of society. He argued that "goodwill" would emerge naturally once these "social constructs" were gone.'

    We have no need to import the ravings of a long-dead French anarchist -- we have plenty of home-grown wing-nuts on the far right radical lunatic fringe.

    Perhaps it would be better to re-read the Preamble to the Constitution: "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

    Justice, Tranquility, defense, general Welfare -- these are what I buy with my taxes.

    -- Posted by Virginia B Trail on Tue, Jan 12, 2010, at 1:37 PM
  • If Virginia is right, Dick, Proudhon was not stating what he hated, but what he was promoting. Ha! I wouldn't know, not being as old as you. Ha, again.

    Good article, but if we did all those things, we would have to scrap every law passed in the 20th Century, and uncover all those displays of the Ten Commandments that Congress, Justices, and Administration, try to ignore with tapestries, and flags.

    We need pray for National Forgiveness.

    -- Posted by Navyblue on Tue, Jan 12, 2010, at 4:43 PM
  • "Eliminate the Departments of Education, Labor and Homeland Security. Teachers' unions and useful education of students is not a good mix! No taxpayer-supported organization, police, fire, government employees of any stripe, should be allowed to form or participate in a union."

    Are you kidding me? You've got to be kidding me.

    Here in our state, we recently had the 37th lowest-paid teachers anywhere in America. Teachers in Nebraska are leaving the profession at alarming rates. Here in our area, teachers are paid lower than professional educators in any other region of the state. At our local educational service unit, they still haven't settled contract negotiations because the governing board doesn't want their professionals paid any higher than they currently are -- which is among the lowest salaries of said professionals in the entire state. A state that's the 37th worst paying teacher state in the country.

    At that local institution, they struggle to find new professionals due to the pathetic salaries they offer folks who went through 4-6 years of school, so they simply add more schools to their caseloads once another teacher decides to move on to greener pastures.

    If it weren't for their local bargaining union and the Nebraska Department of Education, those professionals who work double caseloads for half as much money would have no negotiating authority AT ALL. Do you truly believe that paying educational professionals poorly but expecting them to cover caseloads meant for two or three people is in the best interest of students?

    Teachers are the most underappreciated, underpaid and overworked people. And you're suggesting they don't deserve better or an opportunity to organize?

    The fact that Mr. Trail would even suggest this indicates a real disconnect from reality. Labor unions protect teachers from administrative abuse, a generally litigious society and from getting fired for no reason. The NEA had to fight for teachers to receive lunch breaks during the school day. And I'm not going to touch upon all the other government employees who deserve better treatment than this article suggests.

    -- Posted by davejavu on Thu, Jan 14, 2010, at 8:15 AM
  • Unions should have a narrow role in bargaining for groups of people tha thave similar skills and are expensed collectivley. Government service (civil service) is exactly that and if you are in it for the money you are in the wrong line of work to begin with. Here in Hellifornia the unions have taken over the state and have undermined and corrupted a once beautiful place to live.

    -- Posted by boonesc on Thu, Jan 14, 2010, at 7:51 PM
  • Unions exist to only enrich their members and the theachers unions are not good for schools and students. Why do Democrats block vouchers and other alternatives to gubment run schools? Simple they are a wholly owned subsidiary of the teachers union.

    Well Dick good ideas but good luck with getting any of that through. There does seem to be a bit of a shift back to conservative principles but only after they get their behinds handed to them in 06.

    Trying to pick the best guy in national elections is a fallacy. You can not believe what an individual says. they may be full of great ideas and promises but when they get to Washington it is made very clear that they either toe the party line or get no good commitees or help from the national party in re-electin runs. You have to realize party trumps person in national elections. Pick the partys agends you are the closest to and vote that way. Ben Nelson brought us Harry Reid as the majority leader and his radical liberal agenda which Ben ended up supporting despite 2/3 of his constituents being opposed to it.

    -- Posted by Chaco1 on Fri, Jan 15, 2010, at 10:33 AM
  • Just another article that proves how out of touch you are with today's world, Dick.

    -- Posted by McCook Supporter on Sat, Jan 16, 2010, at 12:27 PM
  • Yep god forbid we actually follow the constitution.

    -- Posted by Chaco1 on Tue, Jan 19, 2010, at 10:25 AM
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