Thursday, May 31, 2012

Lessons From The 2012 Republican Primary

Last Tuesday, Mitt Romney won the Kentucky and the Arkansas Primary and with tonight's victory in the Texas primary, Mitt now has more than the 1,144 delegates needed to be the official Republican nominee to take on Barack Obama: 
Now that Mitt Romney is the Republican nominee, the 2012 primary is officially over. Lets look back at some of the important lessons we've learned from the 2012 Republican Primary: 
1. Organization matters
I think this is the fundamental principle of campaigning. Organization is essential and crucial to a good and victorious campaign. Mitt Romney focused creating organization early in his campaign by building the right "core" campaign team while working on developing a strong campaign teams at the state level. Mitt Romney runs a very tight and disciplined organization and he makes sure that things are streamlined and saves the campaign money.    
2. Fundraise early and often
Having a strong campaign organization at the top level and state to state level is, in my opinion,  the most important part in becoming a winning candidate. If you don't have a good organization, nothing else you do will matter, even if you're backed up by a solid campaign war chest. 
The second most important part in creating a winning election team is fundraising. Its not the money that matters but its the timing and frequency. The rule is that fundraising should begin as early as possible and done frequently as possible. Mitt Romney was very aggressive in raising money for his campaign and he started on it pretty early in the campaign as demonstrated in his well publicized Las Vegas fundraising event in which he raised $10 million in a single day back in May of 2011.Since that time, Mitt Romney has continued to perform well each quarter in raising money for his campaign.
3. Messaging Is Important
A third important aspect of running a successful campaign is messaging. In fact, the heartbeat of a campaign is its simple, focused and crisp message. Obama's message in the 2008 election was hope and change which was quite effective but Obama is now struggling with coming up with a strong simple message to run on in 2012.
But in terms of the 2012 GOP primary, some candidates had good campaign messages and others didn't. Herman Cain's 9-9-9 plan was a hit while I think Rick Perry couldn't come up with a coherent (no pun intended) campaign theme. Even more central to having a good campaign message is the ability to articulate it well and Rick Perry struggled at that.
Here's what one GOP operative had to say about the importance of managing your campaign message and how it can sink your campaign:
Republican operative Todd Harris says it’s important – and increasing difficulty – for a campaign to control its message with the rise of super PACs, outside groups, tabloid political journalism and instant news cycles
“About the only thing you can control is what comes out of the candidate’s mouth,” Harris says. “Except when you can’t.”
3. Follow Through With Your Attacks
Many candidates didn't accept responsibility for their attacks on certain candidates. Tim Pawlenty attacked Mitt Romney's Massachusetts health care plan by calling it ObamneyCare and when called to repeat that attack during the debates, he couldn't muster the strength to repeat it to Mitt's face. Rick Santorum had the same problem in which he attacked Mitt and when given the opportunity to repeat the attack on Romney, he just couldn't repeat it.
On a closely related matter, some candidates had no problem going after other candidates in a debate but they botched their attacks badly. Rick Perry comes to mind. Had Rick Perry set up the attack right, he would have been very effective against Mitt Romney. But he botched that attack so badly that he never really recovered. To make matters even worse, Rick Perry made another campaign gaffe and it was all over for Rick. 
If a candidate can't be aggressive with a fellow competitor, people will assume that he won't be able to stand up to opposing party candidate. Voters will also wonder if the candidate will have the strength to confront Congress or other nations or will he back down from a fight. Additionally, voters want the candidates to have the ability to execute their attacks properly since if the candidate actually becomes President, he will still have to engage in verbal jiujitsu to promote his agenda and if he can't articulate himself or his policies, there's no point in having him in office.
4. Vetting Matters
Some candidates didn't do a good job vetting themselves before running in 2012. Candidates like to promote the good parts of themselves and what their vision is for America. Candidates also like to do opposition research on their competitors.  Smart candidates will conduct opposition research on themselves before they run. Herman Cain found out the hard way when news reports began to surface of his infidelities with other women.
5. Focus, Focus, Focus
Mitt Romney won the 2012 Republican primaries because he remained laser focused the issue of our nation's economy and kept his attacks on Obama while other candidates focused on other issues and went after Mitt. Mitt Romney is just as focused in the general election as he was in the primary election. Obama keeps trying to distract him and the American voters on other issues but Mitt keeps the public's attention on Obama and his economic record. 
6. Debates Do Matter:
As much as people complain about the large number of debates presidential candidates do, they're still an important and essential part of the election process. Mitt Romney consistently did well in the debates while the other candidates had a great night at one debate and then didn't do well in another.  Jon Huntsman was a horrible debater who rambled on, sometimes incoherently, about issues that weren't really important to the American voter. Rick Santorum whined throughout his debates.
In my observation, Mitt Romney was able to obtain the Republican nomination because he followed the fundamentals of political campaigning better than anyone else. Moreover, he was able to apply the fundamentals in new and creative ways that allowed him to beat his competitors. Finally, we got a glimpse of how aggressive Mitt Romney can be with others but we didn't see the full depth of how combative Mitt Romney can be until we started to see him take on Obama. 
Its clear that Republicans have underestimated Mitt Romney and are starting to appreciate good Mitt Romney is at political jiu jitsu. Mitt is a clever, shrewed and smart and very aggressive and people are starting to see it as Romney goes after Obama. People all across the country are starting to realize that Mitt Romney can beat Obama. And he will. 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Why I'm Not Excited About Rand Paul's Endorsement Of Mitt Romney

Many people are excited about Rand Paul's announcement that he's endorsing Mitt Romney in this election. Lets look at Rand Paul talking about Mitt Romney on Fox Business Channel:

Not everyone is excited about this endorsement. A lot of people who support Ron Paul and his son Rand Paul are not thrilled about it. Personally, I'm not thrilled with this announcement either. I am strongly opposed to Ron Paul because of his questionable and controversial background, his racist news letters which he initially denied writing but ultimately admitted to writing it, his endorsements from known racists Don Black and Lew Rockwell, and his foreign policy positions such as refusing to kill Osama Bin Laden or confronting Iran. Ron Paul is someone that conservatives and independents cannot support. 
I'm not a fan of Ron Paul's son either Rand Paul since the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree. For example, Ron Paul is well known for his opposition to Israel despite his attempts to deceive people into believing he supports Israel. Rand Paul uses the same strategies as his father does by attempting to deceive people that he isn't against Israel.
Given how Ron Paul feels about Israel, its not surprising that Rand Paul advocates cutting foreign aid to Israel as a way of reducing our national debt. The problem with this argument is that from an economic stand point, our problem isn’t how much we spend on foreign aid or on military campaigns. That is not why we are massively in debt. Cutting off foreign aid or bringing all the troops home from wherever they are stationed around the world won't make a dent in reducing the national debt. 
The truth is that we can sustain as many military campaigns as America needs if we weren’t for entitlement spending. Entitlement spending is the single largest driver of our current debt right now. In fact, our government is more efficient in the money it spends on defense related matters than it does with entitlement spending. It is true that our government spends more money than it takes in, but the way Ron Paul wants to reduce the deficit by reducing the amount we spend on national security is neither logical, practical or prudent. 
Its not just Rand Paul's views on Israel that bothers me. If you look at Rand Paul's views on foreign policy, he's just like his father. He's an isolationist. He opposed Senator Rubio's attempt to have the country of Georgia be admitted into NATO.  He wants us to get out of Afghanistan, opposed implementing sanctions on Iran
However, the old saying that politics makes strange bedfellows is true. There were rumors that Mitt Romney and Ron Paul formed an alliance with each other during the 2012 primary elections. There may be such an alliance with Rand Paul as well given his endorsement of Mitt Romney. Lets not forget that Rand Paul  never attacked Romney during the 2012 primary but attacked other candidates like Rick Santorum.
Whether the alliance existed then or that Ron and Rand Paul can see the writing on the wall that Mitt Romney will be the GOP nominee, its an alliance its an alliance that should not be forged by Mitt Romney and his campaign because Ron Paul has admitted that he isn't in the race to become President but that he's in the race for the sole purpose of amassing enough delegates so that he can use his delegates as a way of getting the Republican party to adopt his libertarian views on foreign policy, economics and other issues.Furthermore, he admitted on Fox News that he doesn't want the power of being the President but simply wants to influence the Republican Party on matters he considers important.
Mitt Romney should not negotiate with Ron Paul or his son Rand Paul under any circumstances since it would be detrimental to the Republican party and for conservatism. Libertarians already have a political party in which it supports libertarian policies and Romney should not allow Ron and Rand Paul to hijack the Republican party just so it can adopt their domestic and foreign policy views.
Furthermore, given that Ron Paul has semi-suspended his campaign and is retiring from politics after the 2012 election is over, he has long term political aspirations for his son and is setting the stage for Rand Paul's eventual run for President. As a result, any negotiation that takes place with Mitt Romney and either or both Ron and Rand Paul in this 2012 election is only helping the Pauls remake the Republican party into the Libertarian party. Besides, if Rand Paul is thinking about running in the Republican party in 2016, he's gonna have to do it on his own without trying to remake the Republican party into a different political party.
Like many Ron Paul supporters, I'm not happy with Rand Paul's endorsement of Mitt Romney. But Mitt Romney and Ron Paul supporters can agree on one thing: Barack Obama must be defeated in 2012.

Friday, May 25, 2012

What Is The Accurate Definition For Audism?

Recently, the Online American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language has added a new word to its dictionary: audism. Many deaf people are excited about it since Deaf people have been fighting hard to get the word included in the dictionary. 
However, the Online American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language's definitions is not the full, complete and accurate definition of the word audism. They define it as "discrimination or prejudice against people based on the fact that their ability to hear is impaired or absent."
Let me explain why that definition doesn't fully capture the meaning of that word. 
Audism, like all prejudicial labels (racist, sexists), does not specify who the direction of gave the offense and who received the offense. Thus, audism can go both ways. Gallaudet has a better and more accurate definition of Audism. They affirm the fact audism is an act of discrimination that can go both ways by stating that "persons who practice audism are called audists. Audists may be hearing or deaf." 
Linguistically speaking, the Online American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language's definition for audism is questionable when this term is compared with other prejudicial terms such as racism or sexism. Here, audism as generally used by the deaf population and provided on the net, does not work with well other similar labels because audism is defined as only goes in one direction (people who are against Deaf culture) whereas the definition for racism, fore example, can be applied to any person of color who is prejudicial towards other people of another color. 
As Gallaudet explains in its website, audism comes from two latin words:  (1) Latin audire, to hear, and (2) -ism, a system of practice, behavior, belief, or attitude. Thus, based on the way the word is put together, "audism" should to mean simply "discrimination based on one's deafness or hearing status," in the same the way racism means "discrimination based on race" or sexism means "discrimination based on sex." Thus, audism ought to include Deaf people who discriminate against hearing people. 
Thus, Online American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language's definition of audism is incorrect since it describes discrimination and oppression as only going in one direction (hearing against deaf) and not going the other way (deaf against hearing). 
When Deaf people use the word audism, it doesn't accurately describe what the deaf people actually mean to say. When Deaf people use this term, they use it describe oppression or prejudice those who have a hearing loss. To resolve the incorrect usage of audism, it has been suggested that "Deafism" be used as the word to correctly demonstrate oppression or prejudice. This suggestion seems to be an acceptable solution to this linguistic problem.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Best Campaign Ads Of The 2012 GOP Primary

Now that Mitt Romney has recently released the first campaign ad for the general 2012 election, lets look back at the best campaign ads of the primary 2012 election.
Mitt Romney made waves with Republicans with these two ads and really helped define his campaign both in the primary and general election:  

Although Tim Pawlenty's campaign was short lived, he made a really great ad both in terms of style and substance by making a point about Obama's empty podium: 

Herman Cain had a very interesting ads that was unusual which attempted to help him stand out of the crowd of Republican contenders vying for the Republican nomination: 

Another unusual ad from Herman Cain was odd and amusing to everyone which spawned a lot of YouTube spoof videos. A lot of people speculated that Cain was going for the X-File voters.

Ron Paul also had a great ad attacking Newt Gingrich and for unexplained reason, Newt Gingrich got angry at Mitt Romney's attack ad. I think Ron Paul did a better job taking down Newt than Mitt did. 

Mitt Romney produced some other great ads during the 2012 primary race. Here are my top three favorites below: 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Media Isn't Helping Obama Win In 2012

For conservatives, its no surprise that the media supports Barack Obama and will do what they can to help him secure second term. This is something that the media will never admit to unless you happen to be Mark Halperin who confesses that the media will on Team Obama's side during the Presidential Debates:

The media has been sympathetic to Obama ever since he ran for President back into 2007. However, things haven't gone well for Obama since he's been office and people aren't enthusiastic about reelecting him. As a result, ever since Mitt Romney became the presumptive GOP nominee, the media haven't been subtle in their attacks on him. That is to be expected. However, they're doing a very bad job of it.
Lets examine all the ways the media attacks on Mitt have backfired on Obama.
The Media and Romney's Faith
For example, the media went after Mitt Romney's faith and that backfired on them when Lawrence O'Donnell  intentionally misrepresented how the LDS Church began:

Lawrence O'Donnell admits his bias towards the LDS religion and that he can speak harshly against that religion because they won't retaliate against him for doing so:
HH: Would you say the same things about Mohammed as you just said about Joseph Smith?
LO’D: Oh, well, I’m afraid of what the…that’s where I’m really afraid. I would like to criticize Islam much more than I do publicly, but I’m afraid for my life if I do.
HH: Well, that’s candid.
LO’D: Mormons are the nicest people in the world. They’re not going to ever…
HH: So you can be bigoted towards Mormons, because they’ll just send you a strudel.
LO’D: They’ll never take a shot at me. Those other people, I’m not going to say a word about them.
HH: They’ll send you a strudel. The Mormons will bake you a cake and be nice to you.
LO’D: I agree.
HH: Lawrence O’Donnell, I appreciate your candor.
As a result of outrage over his slanderous interpretation of the LDS history,  he has issued a half hearted apology in which doesn't apologize for the substance of his remarks but only that he's sorry for his poor word choices: 

We are some how believe that Lawrence O'Donnell's slanderous and untruthful comments about the LDS Church was only to illustrate his point that religious intolerance is wrong and that refusing to vote for a political candidate because of their religion is wrong His false statements about the how The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints began undermines his own point since he was being intolerant towards one religion while preaching about the need for religious tolerance of all faiths.
Another example is with Martin Bashir who tells Mitt he's going to hell because the LDS scripture says that's what happens to people who lie since he believes Romney is lying about Obama's failed promise to keep unemployment under 8%. For someone who accusing another of lying, Martin Bashir lies about the source of the first scriptural passage since its from the LDS church’s Doctrine and Covenants, which is NOT in the Book of Mormon, yet the graphic on the screen noted that it was from the Book of Mormon. Mr. Bashir also implies that people who don't drink alcohol, which Mitt Romney doesn't in keeping with the LDS dietary law known as the Word of Wisdom, will not make good presidents.
Americans were warned that Obama might go after Romney's faith by getting others do it for him and Steven Colbert mocked Obama for even thinking about it. Yet, the media are acting as surrogates for Obama in going after Mitt's faith and its not helping Obama.
The Media's Coverage of Mitt's Polygamous Ancestors Backfires On Obama
The media took another approach in attacking Romney's religion by trying to make a big deal about the fact that Mitt Romney's distant Mormon ancestors were polygamists. However, the media immediately abandoned this story as soon people started to point out that Barack Obama's own father was an abusive polygamist
Polygamy isn't a popular in America and the media was trying to associate Romney with that practice. However, if the media pushed that line of attack on Romney, people are going to end up being more curious about Obama's father than they are about Mitt's great great grandfather. But the attack alone ended up backfiring because it neutralized the attempt to tie Romney to polygamy by showing that Barack's own father was a polygamist and ultimately tied Obama to polygamy.   
Dog In A Crate Or Dog On A Plate?
Another issue that the media tried to attack Mitt Romney is the old story of him putting the family dog in a dog crate and putting on top of the car during the family road trip. Once again that story died a quick death when conservative bloggers and commentators pointed out that Obama actually ate a dog. Moreover, they also found a story of where Mitt Romney actually saved a dog and some people from drowning.
The attack on Romney ended up hurting Obama because people realized how stupid the whole affair was and revealed how desperate the Obama campaign was in trying distract people from the real issues.
Will The Real Bully Please Stand Up?
More recently, the media tried to paint Mitt Romney as a bully for playing a prank on a younger classmate in high school. Mitt Romney killed the story by simply apologizing for the event and moving on to discuss more important issues that face the country. There was nothing left to discuss after that apology.
However, the media tried to pursue this story anyways but it began to immediately fall apart as soon as it was discovered that the Washington Post was intentionally falsifying the facts of the story and that the man who was the source of this story admitted that he wasn't there when the prank occurred. Furthermore, the victim's sister was unaware that the prank had even happened and that the victim's family was upset with the media is exploiting this prank as a way to attack Romney.  Moreover, there were facts present in that Washington Post story that was contradicted by facts presented in another magazine.
Its clear from the sloppy coverage that the media isn't being subtle in their attacks on Mitt Romney. That is to be expected. However, they're doing a very bad job of it since the story immediately fell apart by checking the facts. But then Dan Rather didn't do a good job with President Bush either once people started checking the facts behind the Texas Air National Guard documents.
However, not only did the media damage their own credibility when it comes to reporting the truth about Mitt Romney, they were unprepared for the rebuttal from the conservative bloggers and commentators who showed that Obama bragged about doing drugs and shoving a girl. Their attempt to make Mitt Romney look like a jerk and a bully only ended up making Obama look like the real jerk and bully.
This story pushed people away from supporting Obama and drove people to Mitt because everyone has done mean and stupid pranks in their life and they could identify and relate more with Mitt. The media also helped change the public's perception of Mitt Romney in a way that Mitt could not have done on his own. He's no longer a stiff and uptight person but is someone who knows when to work and when to play. 
The Media and The War On Women
Despite the fact that Obama has been called the first female President, he hasn't been very friendly to women in the White House or anywhere else. Prior the media going after Ann Romney for being a rich house wife who hasn't worked a day in her life, Obama was up ahead in support from women. That backfired and now Romney is ahead in support from women. If the media hadn't gone after Mitt's wife, Obama would probably have held on to his lead in support from women. 
The Media &  Obama's "Evolution" On Gay Marriage
Perhaps the biggest gift the media gave to Mitt Romney is the way they covered Barack's recent announcement that he supports gay marriage. Its clear that the media scrambled to present the event as a historic even despite the fact that Biden botched Obama's plan to announce his support for gay marriage by making him do it earlier than planned. The public isn't buying the media's coverage and its hurting Obama in so many different ways. Many African Americans won't support Obama and are upset with him. The media has also help fire up the conservative base for Mitt Romney. Even worse, voters are less likely to vote for Obama because of the way he embraced gay marriage.
The media has no legal duty to tell the truth. The media are not neutral observers either. As a result, it is very difficult to punish the media. The media doesn't care about their credibility because their is no incentive, deterrent or punishment that would force them report the facts in an honest and truthful way. Even with conservative commentators, bloggers and media watch dogs that attempt to hold the media accountable for their actions, the media continues to openly and brazenly attack conservative candidates even when confronted with iron clad proof that they story they are reporting isn't true. 
That's why Mark Halperin's confession is making waves among conservatives because you have a member of the media admitting that they will be biased long before the scheduled event. Conservatives can try to show past and current examples media biases and the media will deny it. But to admit ahead of time that the media will be "sympathetic" to Obama during the debates when they're supposed to be neutral moderators doesn't help Obama either because the public can't even trust the media to manage the event properly. 
No matter what the media has done or will do, they haven't been helping Obama even though they are eager to help him win. What they actually doing is helping Mitt Romney win and that isn't good for Obama. When Mitt Romney wins in 2012, the media will be unhappy about it but they will have no one to blame but themselves.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Ron Paul Suspends His Campaign

Today, Ron Paul has done something that I can actually support and get behind. He's suspended his campaign. I literally jumped up and down for joy at this news. However, I am not completely thrilled with this news because even though Ron Paul isn't running any more, he's encouraged his supporters to still go to the local conventions and become delegates
Obviously, the Paul campaign will continue with its strategy of urging supporters to swamp state conventions and get themselves elected delegates to the national confab. As we’ve written before, this is a clever, cheap way of using complicated delegate-allocation rules to Paul’s advantage.
What the Texas libertarian may be doing is amassing “stealth delegates” – delegates bound by primary or caucus vote to Mitt Romney, or one of the withdrawn GOP candidates, who are personally in favor of Paul. It’s hard to count how many such delegates there are – or whether they’ll abstain in the first round, or otherwise cause some sort of disturbance, in Tampa.
Ron Paul was never in the 2012 race to become President. There were two reasons why Ron Paul jumped into the 2012 race.
The first reason is that Ron Paul wants influence the Republican party platform. Earlier this year, he admitted that he isn't in the race to become President but that he's in the race for the sole purpose of amassing enough delegates so that he can use his delegates as a way of getting the Republican party to adopt his libertarian views on foreign policy, economics and other issues.Furthermore, he admitted on Fox News that he doesn't want the power of being the President but simply wants to influence the Republican Party on matters he considers important. 
However, if that is his goal, Ron Paul has only has 104 delegates as of today. In contrast, Mitt Romney will soon win the GOP nomination since he has 973 of the 1,144 delegates and only needs to secure more 171 delegates to formally become the GOP's nominee. Mitt Romney will get those delegates at the next primaries next Tuesday in Nebraska and Oregon. If not, he'll get them the following Tuesday in Arkansas and Kentucky. By May 29th, he should have the nomination wrapped up in Ron Paul's home state of Texas. After that, we will have the the final primaries will set in California, New Jersey, Montana, New Mexico, South Dakota and Utah.
Even with all the dishonest and deceptive tactics used by his supporters to become delegates, it won't disrupt or hurt Mitt Romney at the national convention in Florida: 
Massachusetts aside, the Paul campaign has mainly flexed its muscles in states where Romney didn’t do well — and where Rick Santorum succeeded, such as Minnesota, Iowa, Louisiana, and probably Missouri when they hold their fourth or fifth event that will actually select delegates.  The net effect of the Paul conversion will be to weaken Santorum’s influence, not Romney’s.  Romney will win enough bound delegates from primary states to secure the nomination on the first ballot.
Even though Ron Paul has told CNN’s Newsroom that he doesn't support or like the idea of disrupting the GOP convention, he wants to do what ever he can to insert his political agenda and beliefs into the GOP platform. However, by the time the GOP convention rolls around, he won't have enough delegates to accomplish his short term goal of influencing the GOP platform. Ron Paul will be in a inferior bargaining position in attempting to negotiate with the Republican party into adopting  his views on the national platform. 
Moreover, Mitt Romney and the national Republican party will not tolerate any kind of disruption at the convention which is designed to railroad the GOP to adopt Ron Paul's political beliefs. Nor will they  or even sit at the negotiating table with man who is not a conservative and who conservatives won't support.
Ron Paul knows he won't become President or be picked by Mitt to be his VP. I hope they won't even let Ron Paul speak at the convention.
Ron Paul is delusional if he thinks he can influence the GOP. He can try but it won't work. 
The second reason why Ron Paul jumped into the 2012 race is because even though Ron Paul announced earlier this year that when the 2012 race is over, he will be retiring from politics, his son's political career is just starting. Which means Ron Paul has long term political aspirations for his son and is setting the stage for Rand Paul's eventual run for President: 
The elder Paul’s continued presence in the 2012 presidential race is in large part an effort to secure funds and infrastructure for his son’s own possible White House bid in 2016.
“If [Ron] hadn’t stayed in through the last few weeks, he would not have made those trips to the donors on the West Coast, in California,” said the adviser. “That’s 30 percent of his campaign’s income that will help build his movement for years to come. Yes, Ron is 76 years old, but he has a son.”
However, all of Ron Paul's short and long term plans might crumble if there is a brokered convention or if there is disruption of any kind. If that happens, Ron Paul might make it possible for Obama to win a second term and everyone will blame the Pauls for that.
Despite the good news that Ron Paul has suspended his campaign, conservatives still need to be on the alert at their upcoming state conventions in which Ron Paul supporters will still try to be delegates. If you are a Romney supporter in a state that has an upcoming convention PLEASE try to be there. We must NOT let our guard down. We want to end the deceptive shenanigans of the Raul Paul supporters in order to make  sure nothing happens before the GOP convention in Tampa.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Deval Patrick: Mitt Romney Flipped Flopped On Gay Mariage But Obama Didn't

Current Massachusetts Goveneor Patrick Deval has claimed that Mitt Romney has flipped flopped on gay marriage while Barack Obama didn't flip flop but "evolved" on the issue of gay marriage:
Massachusetts Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick slammed Mitt Romney as a flip-flopper on Sunday while defending President Obama as leading through “convictions,” a reversal of the attacks launched by many Republicans against Obama.
“I think what we know is that Mitt Romney has occupied many positions on many issues, and he has, you know, back in 1994, when he was running for the United States Senate he said publicly that he would be better than Ted Kennedy on gay and lesbian issues. He takes a different position in front of a different audience today,” he said on ABC’s This Week.
Alternately, Patrick said that Obama “is running on and leading through a set of convictions.”
Patrick was referencing Obama’s admission that he supports gay marriage, a position that many critics have called a flip-flop on the issue, with Democrats defending it as an “evolution.” But Patrick’s statements make it clear that neither candidate is free from the accusation of flip-floppery.
Deval Patrick knows about flip flopping since he took Mitt Romney's $ 2 billion surplus that he left at the end of his term as governor and flipped it to a whopping $101, 908, 205, 432 debt (as I write this post) for the state of Massachusetts. Governor Patrick Deval has taken Mitt Romney's surplus and squandered it and is on track to be about 1.5 or 2 billion dollars in debt. What's even more amazing is that Governor Deval has been receiving $7 billion in federal stimulus funds for the las two years and Massachusetts which hasn't helped reduced the deficit.
In fact, his spending is so outrageous since he blew money on himself and his staff which made the citizens of the state very unhappy. Thanks to Deval Patrick's leadership, Massachusetts is in debt. And what's his solution to fix the problem? More spending
Govenor Duval has flipped the state back to the same level of debt before Mitt Romney became Governor of Massachusetts and he hasn't improved the state financially but regressed back to the same old problems. 
This is a very clear indication of poor financial leadership.

Happy Mothers Day 2012!

Romney's Speech At Liberty University A Hit With Evangelicals And Atheists

Mitt Romney's speech at Liberty University has been well received by Evangelical leaders:
“I thought it was a really good speech,” said Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, who had backed Mr. Santorum. “He hit on the religious freedom aspect, again recognizing the shared values while acknowledging the theological differences he has with them. I think he made very clear what marriage is, and in the context of his speech, he spoke about the importance of marriage and the family, even giving a hat tip to Senator Santorum.”
“I don’t think I could have improved upon the speech,” he added.
Gary L. Bauer, president of the Christian advocacy group American Values, who had strongly pushed for Mr. Santorum, said this speech would help assuage the concerns of evangelical Christians.
“I thought it was a home run, and I think so will most values voters,” he said. “He also clearly stood for the sanctity of life, clearly stood for the traditional definition of marriage, and I think importantly, encouraged the students to be bold and stand for those kinds of values, too. I think it’s going to be hard for critics to find much in this to criticize.” 
Mitt Romney's speech helped turn those who were lukewarm about his candidacy into strong supporters for him:
His staunch opposition to same-sex marriage, which provided one of the rare political moments in the speech, is helping Romney build a bridge to evangelicals, who hopscotched from one candidate to another in the primaries while shunning the front-runner.  Phil Burress, president of Citizens for Community Values, told the Washington Post recently, “So many people were rather lukewarm toward Governor Romney and were really looking for some more tangible reasons to support him. Then lo and behold, it just fell out of the sky when Obama came out and endorsed same-sex marriage.”
Even those who are associated with Liberty University were impressed with Mitt Romney:
Romney, even as a guest, was initially treated as an outsider at Liberty. The announcement that he would be the commencement speaker prompted an uproar. A graduation Facebook page was overrun with hundreds of posts objecting to the choice.
But on Saturday, the crowd received him warmly and Jerry Falwell Jr., the son of the founder who now heads the school, called Romney “the next president of the United States.” The university presented Romney with a chair, engraved with, “There’s always room for you at our table.”
Romney’s message struck the right chord with Dean Shelton, a 74-year-old retiree who lives in Lynchburg. Common faith is important, Shelton said, but shared values are even more so. “What I liked about it was that he had the right philosophy on life that we share,” he said.  “We’re not electing a minister, we’re electing a president.”  
For Craig and Rene Yoshino, who traveled from Seattle to see their daughter graduate, the candidate’s references to culture and traditional marriage were essential, although neither believes that Mormonism is a segment of Christianity.
 “It’s what matters for salvation, but not for the presidency,” he said. “Between Obama and Romney, Romney fits more closely with us.”
Mitt's speech also surprised many atheists since he included them in his speech and which lead many of them to be supportive of his speech. For many Atheists, having a conservative candidate reach out to them and acknowledge them is something that is "so abnormal to hear in conservative circles that it qualifies as something worth noting."

As a result, Mitt Romney's speech is resonating with alot of people because he's seeking to find common ground with all Americans even if they have different religious, political and social views. Its clear that Romney isn't seeking to be a Pastor in Chief or even to make a name for himself as the first Mormon in the White House. Our nation is a republic in which the government should represent the interests of all the people, rather than just a select few. Mitt speech shows that Romney is the leader America wants in which he will lead our country on the basis of values and beliefs that are common to most people.
Mitt Romney sincerely, genuinely and strongly wants to be a leader for all Americans and help get America back to excellent economic health so that people can have jobs, pay their bills, support their families and make a difference in their communities.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Mitt Romney Gives Commencement Speech At Liberty University

Today, Mitt Romney gave the commencement speech at Liberty University which is the largest Christian educational institution in America. His speech has made headlines in which he defended marriage as being between one man and one woman. 
However, I believe the best and most important part of his speech is how our Judeo-Christian traditions have shaped American culture:
Today, thanks to what you have gained here, you leave Liberty with conviction and confidence as your armor. You know what you believe.  You know who you are.  And you know Whom you will serve.  Not all colleges instill that kind of confidence, but it will be among the most prized qualities from your education here.  Moral certainty, clear standards, and a commitment to spiritual ideals will set you apart in a world that searches for meaning.
That said, your values will not always be the object of public admiration.  In fact, the more you live by your beliefs, the more you will endure the censure of the world. Christianity is not the faith of the complacent, the comfortable or of the timid. It demands and creates heroic souls like Wesley, Wilberforce, Bonhoeffer, John Paul the Second, and Billy Graham. Each showed, in their own way, the relentless and powerful influence of the message of Jesus Christ.  May that be your guide.
You enter a world with civilizations and economies that are far from equal.  Harvard historian David Landes devoted his lifelong study to understanding why some civilizations rise, and why others falter.  His conclusion:  Culture makes all the difference.  Not natural resources, not geography, but what people believe and value. Central to America’s rise to global leadership is our Judeo-Christian tradition, with its vision of the goodness and possibilities of every life.
The American culture promotes personal responsibility, the dignity of work, the value of education, the merit of service, devotion to a purpose greater than self, and, at the foundation, the pre-eminence of the family.
The power of these values is evidenced by a Brookings Institution study that Senator Rick Santorum brought to my attention.  For those who graduate from high school, get a full-time job, and marry before they have their first child, the probability that they will be poor is 2%.  But, if those things are absent, 76% will be poor.  Culture matters.
As fundamental as these principles are, they may become topics of democratic debate.  So it is today with the enduring institution of marriage.  Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman.
The protection of religious freedom has also become a matter of debate.  It strikes me as odd that the free exercise of religious faith is sometimes treated as a problem, something America is stuck with instead of blessed with.  Perhaps religious conscience upsets the designs of those who feel that the highest wisdom and authority comes from government.
But from the beginning, this nation trusted in God, not man.  Religious liberty is the first freedom in our Constitution.  And whether the cause is justice for the persecuted, compassion for the needy and the sick, or mercy for the child waiting to be born, there is no greater force for good in the nation than Christian conscience in action.
Mitt Romney points out that despite the fact that we are a nation of many faiths, we are bound together as a nation through Christian service
People of different faiths, like yours and mine, sometimes wonder where we can meet in common purpose, when there are so many differences in creed and theology.  Surely the answer is that we can meet in service, in shared moral convictions about our nation stemming from a common worldview. 
Christian service is still alive and well in America but it has been eroded by the growth of government since the 1930s.  I highly recommend two books that deal with the American history of charity prior to the New Deal programs of the 1930s and its decline afterwards. The first book is The Charity Organization Movement in the United States; A Study in America Philanthropy by Frank Dekker Watson. The second book is The Tragedy of American Compassion by Marvin Olasky. 
People complain that our nation is divided because of politics but the solution to that problem is that Americans can form deeper connections with one another in our communities despite that we come from different faiths, economic backgrounds and political beliefs when we freely and willingly without government compulsion to serve one another. 
You can read watch the entire speech here or read the entire transcript of the speech here.  

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Joe Biden Calls Mitt, "President Romney"

Vice President Joe Biden makes a gaffe in which he calls Mitt Romney, "President Romney." I'm sure Obama isn't amused. Watch the clip below:

Monday, May 7, 2012

Were Mormons...Socialists!?

It is no surprise that the intentional misrepresentation and attacks on Mitt Romney's faith continues in the media. One of the more interesting articles to come out about Mitt Romney's faith comes from online magazine Salon in which the author of the article, Troy Williams, claims that the Book of Mormon and Mormon history embraced and supports Socialism.
That claim is flat out not true.
Progressives are intentionally using cherry picked historical facts and scriptures to score political points against Mitt Romney as Lane Williams points out in his op-ed for the Deseret News: 
The first was in the online magazine Salon from Salt Lake blogger Troy Williams about how the Book of Mormon and Mormon history teaches Socialism. The article’s subheadline: “Joseph Smith would be horrified by the religion's present-day materialism — and uber-capitalist candidate.”
In fairness, some of Williams' article was thoughtful and thought-provoking, but exactly why is it Salon’s role to glibly say what would horrify Joseph Smith?
It’s off-putting, to say the least, when someone with an ax to grind cherry-picks elements of the Book of Mormon to bludgeon a political opponent or to score points in a public debate or to even try to further, as it seemed to me, the old trope that Latter-day Saints are hypocrites.
Progressives are attempting to use false and distorted facts to promote socialism getting the uninformed and the far left to believe this lie about the doctrines and history of the LDS Church. They are also attempting to scare voters away from voting for Mitt Romney either because of his faith or because of the strong opposition to socialism by conservatives and Republicans. 
What Is The Law Of Consecration? 
Wikipedia has a nice and simple explanation for those who are not familiar with this religious doctrine:
The Law of Consecration, as practiced by the Latter Day Saints, was for the support of the poor (Doctrine and Covenants 42:30). Latter Day Saints were asked to voluntarily deed (consecrate) their property to the Church of Christ, and the church then would assign to each member a "stewardship" of property "as much as is sufficient for himself and family" for his "needs, wants, family, and circumstances." If consecrated property became more than was sufficient for the assigned steward, the "residue" was "to be consecrated unto the bishop" kept for the benefit of "those who have not, from time to time, that every man who has need may be amply supplied and receive according to his wants."
A more detailed explanation of what the Law of Consecration can be found here.
Is The Law Of Consecration And Socialism The Same?
A simplistic description of the differences between the Law of Consecration and socialism reveals that they are philosophically not the same. In 1942 the First Presidency of the Church issued this strongly worded opposition to socialism and communism and explained why its different from the Law of Consecration:
Communism and all other similar isms bear no relationship whatever to the united order. They are merely the clumsy counterfeits which Satan always devises of the gospel plan. Communism debases the individual and makes him the enslaved tool of the state to whom he must look for sustenance and religion; the united order exalts the individual, leaves him his property, "according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and his needs," (D&C 51:3) and provides a system by which he helps care for his less fortunate brethren; the united order leaves every man free to choose his own religion as his conscience directs. Communism destroys man's God-given free agency; the united order glorifies it. Latter-day Saints cannot be true to heir faith and lend aid, encouragement, or sympathy to any of these false philosophies. They will prove snares to their feet. [Conference Report, April 1942, p. 90]
Not only is the Law of Consecration not the same as Socialism in theory, but the are radically different in practice. An in depth look of the history and application of the Law of Consecration demonstrates how unlike these two systems are. Here's Joseph Smith, the founder of the LDS Church explains how the Law of Consecration works: 
“Concerning the consecration of property:—First, it is not right to condescend to very great particulars in taking inventories. The fact is this, a man is bound by the law of the Church, to consecrate to the Bishop, before he can be considered a legal heir to the kingdom of Zion; and this, too, without constraint; and unless he does this, he cannot be acknowledged before the Lord on the Church Book therefore, to condescend to particulars, I will tell you that every man must be his own judge how much he should receive and how much he should suffer to remain in the hands of the Bishop. I speak of those who consecrate more than they need for the support of themselves and their families.
“The matter of consecration must be done by the mutual consent of both parties; for to give the Bishop power to say how much every man shall have, and he be obliged to comply with the Bishop’s judgment, is giving to the Bishop more power than a king has; and upon the other hand, to let every man say how much he needs, and the Bishop be obliged to comply with his judgment, is to throw Zion into confusion, and make a slave of the Bishop. The fact is, there must be a balance or equilibrium of power, between the Bishop and the people, and thus harmony and good will may be preserved among you.
“Therefore, those persons consecrating property to the Bishop in Zion, and then receiving an inheritance back, must reasonably show to the Bishop that they need as much as they claim. But in case the two parties cannot come to a mutual agreement, the Bishop is to have nothing to do about receiving such consecrations; and the case must be laid before a council of twelve High Priests, the Bishop not being one of the council, but he is to lay the case before them.” ( History of the Church, 1:364–65.)
One of the key differences both in theory and practice is in the distribution and ownership of private property:
The stewardship is private, not communal, property . The consecrator, or steward, was to be given a “writing,” or deed, that would “secure unto him his portion [stewardship]” ( D&C 51:4 ). Although it has been acknowledged that all things belong to the Lord, a stewardship represents a sacred entrustment of a portion from God to the individual. The stewardship is given with a deed of ownership so that individuals, through their agency, are fully responsible and accountable for that which is entrusted to them. The deed protects individuals if they are disqualified from participation as stewards (see D&C 51:4 ). For legal purposes, the stewardship was private property, even though the stewards themselves understood that it ultimately belonged to God. President Marion G. Romney explained:
“This procedure [of providing deeds] preserved in every man the right of private ownership and management of his property. Indeed, the fundamental principle of the system was the private ownership of property. Each man owned his portion, or inheritance, or stewardship, with an absolute title, which, at his option, he could alienate [transfer], keep and operate, or otherwise treat as his own. The Church did not own all of the property, and life under the united order was not, and never will be, a communal life, as the Prophet Joseph himself said.
“The intent was, however, for him to so operate his property as to produce a living for himself and his dependents.” (In Conference Report, Apr. 1977, p. 119; or Ensign, May 1977, p. 93 .)
By now, the distinction should be clear: Law of Consecration involves giving whereas socialism involves taking.
The taking is mandatory and is forcefully ripped out of your hands either by taxation, government confiscation or outright theft. If you don't "contribute" to the socialist community, harsh punishment follows which can range from imprisonment to death. The giving is also mandatory. You must rely on the state and no one else for support. Your moral and individual will eventually becomes lethargic, weak, and atrophied in which you no longer can work to support yourself and obtain what you need because everything is provided for you. Once you are completely dependent on the state, you become a slave of the state.
Ironically, the promised equal redistribution of wealth never happens since the takes all the property, gives back a very tiny portion of the redistributed property according to what they think you need in order to take the minimal effort it takes to keep the social order while the leaders keep everything to themselves. That is why you'll see leaders under Communist Russia, China, Cuba,  North Korea and socialist Venezuela living in wealth while the rest of the population lives in poverty.  
Another irony is that the socialism promises a better community in which people are brought together closer by sharing equally what they have with the less fortunate. However, the government actually robs people of the responsibility and need to give charitably since people feel that someone else, typically the state, is responsible for the poor and downtrodden and that individuals will only donate what the government requires them to give. As a result, the community is destroyed
In contrast, the Law of Consecration is a voluntary system in which you give to the Church everything you have, what you think you need is given back to you and you give away the rest of what you don't need so that others can have what they do need. Under this system, the community actually grows stronger, closer and united.
The Law of Consecration is a unique doctrine proposed by the LDS Church. However, even the simple practice of voluntary charity as practiced by various social and religious organizations produces better results for the poor and the community. I highly recommend two books that deal with the American history of charity prior to the New Deal programs of the 1930s and its decline afterwards. The first book is The Charity Organization Movement in the United States; A Study in America Philanthropy by Frank Dekker Watson. The second book is The Tragedy of American Compassion by Marvin Olasky. 
Did The LDS Church Ever Embrace Socialism?
The simple answer: no.
In fact, it was immediately rejected by the Prophet Joseph Smith when the political theory was being spread to people in the United States.. The Prophet Joseph Smith attended a presentation on socialism in September 1843 at Nauvoo. His response was to declare that he “did not believe the doctrine.” ( History of the Church, 6:33). Since Joseph Smith's initial rejection of Socialism, prominent church leaders throughout LDS History have spoken out against socialism. The most well known and fierce rejection of socialism comes from the Prophet Ezra Taft Benson who gave a landmark speech on the LDS Church's rejection of socialism. Another vocal opponent of socialism was Elder Marion G. Romney (no relation to Mitt Romney) who spoke out strongly against it.
The fact is that the LDS Church has never supported socialism in its doctrines, in its practices or from its leadership starting with its founder to is present and current leader. Moreover, the LDS Church has always remained strongly opposed to socialism. 
Troy Williams wants you to believe that Joseph Smith would be disturbed by "the religion's present-day materialism -- and uber-capitalist candidate" Mitt Romney. But Joseph Smith would be more disturbed that Mr. Williams would claim that he and the Book of Mormon supports socialism. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Jon Stewart: Mormon, Mo' Problems

Lately, my law practice has gotten busier than usual and when things settle down, I'll be back to writing blog articles. Until then, watch Jon Stewart's new hilarious commentary about the media's attacks on Mitt Romney's faith: