Las Vegas Sun

April 18, 2015

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Letter to the editor:

Republicans should have won the election

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Gov. Mitt Romney should have won the election. After all, the economy was bad and unemployment was high. But the governor, Rep. Paul Ryan and the Republican Party kept making mistakes.

Consider that polls showed that some two-thirds of the American people think that a woman should have the right to choose to have an abortion. But the Republican Party’s platform vowed to end this choice. It didn’t help their cause with women, when almost every congressional Republican voted against the equal pay for women bill.

They lost Hispanic votes by voting against the Dream Act and refusing to discuss a way that illegal immigrants could have a path to citizenship.

Unions were described as being evil and a cause of the recession, costing them votes with union members.

They blamed teachers for the poor educational environment in the schools they refuse to adequately fund.

As part of their plan to make the president a one-term president, Republicans gummed up the works in Congress. Republicans fought bills such as the president’s American Jobs Act, which called for funding to repair the infrastructure — which would have created thousands of construction jobs — and also protecting jobs for teachers, police, fire and EMT personnel. Republicans blocked this bill, apparently fearing that it would stimulate the economy and make President Barack Obama look good.

The president and Democrats welcomed these groups and people disrespected by Republicans, promising to work on their behalf. The Republicans moved into a gated community. Romney didn’t stand a chance.

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  1. I know people get tired of seeing me do it, but I will continue to provide a 'balance' to letter writers that are so one sided.

    I disagree with Conservatives stance on abortion, but I dislike abortions and would like to limit them as much as possible, just not by taking the right to an abortion away. I totally understand and respect those that think abortion is the taking of a life.

    There are many laws on the books about equal pay and another was not needed. What we need is to enforce the laws already on the books.

    Unions have a place in the private market and they do lead to higher wages and benefits, but like everything, they can and have pushed for so much at times that they have driven some businesses into the ground. Unions have no place in the public sector because they have no adversary in that arena. Even FDR recognized that.

    Teacher pay should be higher because they do a critical job, but when tax increases often go to everything but increased teacher salaries, the public becomes skeptical of more tax increases. Also, many Americans can see that the society we have created and live in is a big part of the reason our educational system is doing a poor job. More money cannot repair that.

    The way to fix the immigration issue is to do what Mexico does... not allow non citizens to gain employment. That could be done with employer E-verify, but proponents of the Dream Act oppose e-verify and without it, once we provide a path to citizenship (which I support) for illegals without a criminal record, more and more illegals will come... and that is not a solution.

    The works in Congress are 'gummed' up because we have two parties that act like bulldozers when they have a majority, don't compromise, put their and their parties interests above those of the nation and are captive to money and lobbying of powerful interests.

    We tried an American jobs act. It was called a 787 billion dollar stimulus and it contained shovel ready infrastructure jobs that turned out to be 'not so shovel ready'.

    Far too many Americans just refuse to see that their are no good guys between these two parties. As long as so many of us remain as one sided as the letter writer is and as one sided as many are on the Conservative side, we have zero chance and making the decisions we need to make and taking the actions we need to take.


  2. Mr. Mundy you are right on the mark with your assessment of the elections. Responses you'll be getting from "conservatives" and/or GOP-Tea Party members will prove your point. They know they have a problem but can't quite reach out to enlarge their tent. It's a "stuck in the mud with the wheels spinning" mentality that will cost them future elections. Setting up Marco Rubio as a token Hispanic candidate will fool no one and if Hillary runs she will win hands down. Not all Tea Party members are as "nutz" as a few who can't their mouths shut, but the damage has been done to them all. It's not misspeaking when you say exactly how you feel then try to walk it back. The comments about rape, abortion, contraception, and calling congressional members communists will definetly not help in growing the party that denies evolution and climate change. Stuck in the mud with the wheels spinning .....

  3. President Obama won. Congratulations. By 2 percent of the popular vote. That's a difference of 334,000 votes in 4 swing states. The Electoral Votes [EV] which are skewed toward the Dems show a landslide of 332 to 204. Don't be fooled.

    This has happened other times. In 1960 the popular vote was virtually tied, but John Kennedy handily beat Richard Nixon on the EV 303 to 219. In 1968, there was another close popular vote, .7 percent difference. But on the EV side, Nixon beat Humphrey 301 to 191. The popular vote in 1976 reflected the narrow margin of 2012, but in the EV Carter was a decisive winner. In 1876 and 1888, a case can be made that if the African-American vote was not suppressed Republicans would have had a popular plurality. And of course 2000, which is a anomaly.

    On the core values, fiscal conservatism and "smart" not big government, the GOP is right on. On the social issues and appeal to single women and minorities, the GOP needs to do better. The GOP has a plethora of talented diverse politicians, of both genders who are young vibrant and in tune with the social needs and issues of their constituencies. As they are acclimated into the party, they will outperform the Dems in the White House races and Senate too, just as they have done in the House of Representatives for the last 16 of 20 years and the State Houses and State legislatures in recent years.


  4. Richard Mundy is a pro-democratic hack who writes letters to both the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas New Journal. Fact-check his letter points. The full picture view on immigration reform is that republicans support comprehensive reform, not just one component to immigration reform that doesn't remedy all of the immigration-related issues. The democratic trick is to back a single component to issues like immigration(dream act only) and government fiscal problems(taxes only, not spending), get votes from their narrow solution that does not solve the remaining issues within, for example, immigration and government fiscal problems. In essence, they are the political version of a flash mob seeking what they want from a larger issue to get votes but not solving the larger aspects of the issue and they've been doing this for years. This is why many state governments have gone republican as democrats fail to properly solve problems with comprehensive solutions.

  5. An excellent letter Richard.

    I would only add to that the farcical primary campaign where we saw serial front runners enjoying a few weeks of fame. There was the billionaire birther, the crazy woman, the cowboy, the nine-nine-nine (or was it nein-nein-nein) guy, the Speaker who won't shut up, and the sanctimonious guy. But, when the music stopped Mitt Romney was the last man sitting.

  6. "Should we lock them up in chambers and keep them there until they compromise, become one, and legislate what is best for the country? I sure wouldn't have any problems with it." BChap

    On a lighter note, that's exactly how the College of Cardinals [120 strong] select the Pope.


  7. Comment removed by moderator. - -

  8. Abortion is swell for a guy like Mundy because, well, he wasn't aborted, was he (at least not all of him, just a bit off the top)? To execute the innocent and then say it's popular, well, that sound a bit Naziish to me. What does it say for a country that it is a "right" to execute innocents? Executing the innocent is something I would expect of the Soviet Union, China, Cuba, North Korea and many Arab states, but the USA? Is that what the Founders had in mind when they fought the British? To make it easier for women to kill their own children? Somehow, I have my doubts about that. And, not being a Christian myself, I have to wonder how "good" Christians square the execution and slaughter of some 41 million with their professed faith? How do they sleep at night? Do they see the mangled bodies of the unborn dancing in their heads instead of sugar plums?

  9. The difference between the two parties is that the democrats are vested in their demographic groups and pander to them effectively. The Republicans are vested in their values and principles and these are not in a premeditated way aligned to groups that comprise the largest number of voters. While the overall spread in the vote count was only two points this was too much to overcome. On a more subjective note, Mitt Romney never truly caught on with the masses. That's a shame because he is a solid human being and a competent executive who would have been highly effective .

  10. Jerry can't face this reality:
    "Most miscarriages are caused by chromosome problems that make it impossible for the baby to develop. Usually, these problems are unrelated to the mother or father's genes.

    Other possible causes for miscarriage include:

    Drug and alcohol abuse
    Exposure to environmental toxins
    Hormone problems
    Physical problems with the mother's reproductive organs
    Problem with the body's immune response
    Serious body-wide ( systemic) diseases in the mother (such as uncontrolled diabetes)
    It is estimated that up to half of all fertilized eggs die and are lost (aborted) spontaneously, usually before the woman knows she is pregnant. Among those women who know they are pregnant, the miscarriage rate is about 15-20%. Most miscarriages occur during the first 7 weeks of pregnancy. The rate of miscarriage drops after the baby's heart beat is detected.

    The risk for miscarriage is higher in women:

    Older age, with increases beginning by 30, becoming greater between 35 and 40, and highest after 40
    Who have had previous miscarriages" From here:

    This means the christian deity is either allowing or causing these abortions.

  11. Richard J. Mundy, Las Vegas,

    Your article states all the reasons why President Obama won re-election. You failed to mention the groups that voted for President Obama did not support Mitt Romney during or before the campaign.

    Many of the national polls showed Mitt Romney ahead during the campaign, the numbers were false. The actual number reported by credible polls showed President Obama ahead. And two months leading into the election on November 6, 2012 clearly showed President Obama ahead, with Mitt Romney having a very slim chance of winning.

    The real numbers always showed President Obama ahead. The real numbers...not the numbers from the Bubble.

    Had House Republicans voted for the Dream Act, the action would have strengthen President Obama's position, for this would have been credited to the Obama Administration.
    Support always favored the President)

    The President always had the support of Unions. The majority of the Unions have been hurt by budget cuts, from state and Federal. Few Unions in the private sector, most if not all, are in the public sector, state and federal. (Support always favored the President)

    President Obama had the support of Teachers long before teachers become a talking point. The President's commitment to Education is well known. This is one of President Obama's strong positions. This is the main reason this independent voter supports the President. (Support always favored the President)

    The House Republican created the uncertainty in the US business community. Saying "no" to everything and anything the President proposed to advance the US job market. Uncertainty, was and is, the main goal of the House Republicans. They achieved the goal, but lost the party's identity with American voters. This helped the President in getting supports from independent voters. (Support always favored the President)

    The President always had the groups of Hispanics, independent and Single Women, Young voters, College Students, Young Asians, and especially Black Voters. These group have no place to go, but to support the President. (Support always favored the President)

    There was not doubt two month before election day the President would win re-election. The real numbers clearly showed a convincing victory for the President. Mitt Romney chances of winning were slim. In the real world, Mitt Romney was not going to win, and he didn't.

  12. Bradley,

    Congress isn't prison and we don't have complete control as is the case in prison, so your solution, while interesting, could not be put in play in Congress.

    The letters I read here regarding what I write are typical of what I see in the general populous. People on the Conservative side pretty much ignore me because I tend to be center right, at least fiscally. People on the Progressive side tend to attack me because they place me in the 'enemies' camp. A few people (those that will actually see the problems with both sides) engage me.

    Unfortunately, until that changes, nothing good is going to happen. The change I seek will happen, I suspect, but not until we decline even further than where we are today.

    I guess 'belonging' is so important to so many people that they attach themselves to a party and simply refuse to acknowledge the obvious....

    It's sad and I'll continue to speak out, but it is discouraging... to say the least.


  13. Purgatory,

    Thanks for the advice, but no thanks.

    Lastthrows illustrates just what I am talking about as do others on the opposite side.

    Lastthrows claims that former President Bush didn't have a mandate with a 3 million vote margin with over 100 million votes cast. I agree. Then he turns right around and claims President Obama has a mandate with a 4 million vote margin out of over 100 million votes cast.

    Fair minded people do not make statements like this because it is an obviously biased view. A 3 or 4 point margin would most likely not be deemed a mandate by fair minded people... and if 4 % was deemed a mandate, it could probably be argued that 3 % could be one too.

    Let's face the truth that a 3 % or 4 % margin of victory indicates no mandate and that our electorate is very closely divided.


  14. Michael Casler,

    Very good lead-in response. Your points on Unions, Teachers, Immigration, and Congress are reasonable.

    I said once before, you should seriously consider running for State of Local office. At the very least, you'll have support from many Sun readers. This independent would vote for you.

    Good points Michael.


  15. "Thank you, Carmine. A very interesting note on the voting process in how Pope's are chosen by their Cardinals." @ BChap

    It's worked for 2000 years. We've had a few Popes of questionable character. But not one Pope, NONE, in 2000 years have done and/or said anything to impugn the doctrines and dogmas of the Catholic Church. If that isn't "Divine Intervention, " I don't know what is.


  16. Longtimevegan,

    Thank you for the kind words but most of the letter writers to the Sun are much more to the left economically than I am. I seriously doubt that I would get much support. When I used to visit Nevada as a kid, it was Conservative and somewhat Libertarian. Now, with so many California transplants in Nevada, the state is pretty Progressive, like California is.

    People who are not full fledged Progressives find it very hard to be elected in California and it isn't going to be long before Nevada follows suit.

    I may run for office some day but I'm not really a public person by nature so that would be a challenge.


  17. Bradley,

    I respond to people like Purgatory but I do understand what they are. Don't worry, I'll not cry in my milk because Purgatory wants to me go away... nor do I plan to go away.

    I understood your point about the prisoners and of course these two sides in Congress 'could' work together. Unfortunately, it really isn't to their benefit to do so, and so they won't. That's why I'd like to see them all replaced. They put their own and their parties interests above those of the nation and for that, they all should be fired.


  18. Mr.Mundy,
    The letter (Mr. Mundy) points out some very interesting points about the Republicans.Perhaps they may have won this past election.Except for one small detail they had the wrong candidate Mitt Romney running against Pres.Barack Obama.

  19. Casler,

    You seem like a nice guy and I am impressed with your muted passion, but seriously, after your ad nauseam writing on this beaten-down subject, you end with "...that a 3% or 4% margin of victory indicates no mandate and that our electorate is very closely divided." Do we really need to see that again? Really?

    To what purpose? Isn't that self-evident? Shouldn't we move the argument ahead further?

    Your energy -- and quite frankly, Branco's and others -- could be so much better spent helping the rest of your fellow citizens get ourselves out of this mess. Let's all move past name calling, illogical reasoning, and restating the obvious before, well, before it is too late.

    Sorry to be so rude, but I am toward my wits end with all of this inane pablum.

    Regards & enjoy your afternoon,

  20. Purg says "Sorry to be so rude, but I am toward my wits end with all of this inane pablum".

    It's called freedom of expression Purg. If you're at your wits end then why don't you develop some coping skills. Don't let points of view bother you.

  21. Garner,

    Respectfully, you failed to understand. Simply put, please explain to me how "...that a 3% or 4% margin of victory indicates no mandate and that our electorate is very closely divided" is a point-of-view. Most rational people would accept that statement as fact, and wouldn't need to read it daily.

    Moreover, none of it would bother me, if it weren't wasting energy that could be used to fix this mess.


  22. Purgatory,

    I take no offense at you or what you said. You have a right to your opinion.

    Just what exactly, do you consider communication that would move the argument ahead?

    Personally, I think it is impossible to move ahead until people on all sides recognize that our government isn't working in our interests and neither are either one of the parties. That's why I argue against many of the stated views of Vernos, Carmen, Sam, Mark, Jerry, etc.

    To me, to show the kind of belief in and support for either of the parties is ridiculous and to also buy into the talking points each party uses against the other is equally ridiculous.

    There is plenty of skepticism regarding anything about the 'other' side, but such 'total' belief in everything about the side you support. With what we can all see going on around us, I find this absolutely astonishing.

    It's almost like so many of us are standing in place, surrounded by two pickpockets who are each picking us clean while telling us they are just straightening wrinkles in our clothes..... and we just stand their believing whatever they say.



  23. I, too, would like to see Casler run for office and I will do my best to recruit him as a Whig candidate. :)

    He is far too rational to be accepted by either the Democratic or Republican party bosses in this county, but that is exactly what the Whigs look for.

    A State Assembly seat might not be out of the question depending on his district.

  24. boftx,

    I actually agree with you. I'd rather have Mr. Casler than Louie Gohmert, Allan West or Michele Bachmann, or any of the other whackjob politicians on The Hill.

  25. If Romney had won, I think the Democrats might be offering some of the same defenses and excuses.

    I think it is more about reassuring contributors so the funding won't dry up.

    Reality is that Republicans have an ideology that a large number of Americans cannot relate to, and feel is too extreme.

    Romney expressed what that ideology was very well. Republicans dumping on Romney now is not an example of integrity.

    I doubt any idea of modifying their views or modifying their message will be believable. It is only a way to get the power to carry out their real ideology.

    That also includes Democrats. They don't have a clean record in current times of living up to their ideology when they have power, and thus are not reelected.

    Time for a third party to offer a new approach and actually serve the People. This could present a challenge to the major parties who would have to redefine their ideologies for differentiation.

    The only question is will a third party be able to do that, or will they serve their party over the People as well?

    That is the real question for all parties...can they truly serve the nation as a whole rather than cater to one ideology/party over the others? Has it ever been done?

    Perhaps we have to accept that everyone votes their own ideology, which includes their own self interest, then has to try to justify why they lose an election in order to satisfy they own egos and continued efficacy.

  26. "The only question is will a third party be able to do that, or will they serve their party over the People as well?" - peacelily

    I think that the Whigs do place the people over the party. So far, in all my discussions with party leaders at the national level on down, I believe that is the case.

    As I said in an earlier interview, there is no reason for us not to try. It is far better to make the attempt than to sit back and do nothing except complain about the situation.

  27. The Republicans will have another shot at the Presidency in 2016. Perhaps they'll come up with some more competitive ideas. Their chances may have been greatly improved in the 2012 election if they could have lost the connection with the religious right and their spokespersons Paul Broun, Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock.

  28. Right. And Jesus was supposed to return within the lifetimes of his disciples. What next?

  29. I am impressed with the civility of the dialogue in this forum this evening.

    I would like to propose a few solutions to the problems we face with our government but it requires every voter to take action, not just a few. If EVERY voter would contact their local, state, and federal representatives, especially those in the U.S. Congress on a consistent basis, maybe a difference can be made.

    My solutions include:

    1] Prohibiting lobbyists. No special group or person(s) should have more access to the representatives than the voters in each district.

    2] Congressional representatives should be REQUIRED to have regular town hall meetings within their districts to discuss proposed or pending legislation with the voters, and these should be televised.

    3] Campaign finance reform should be enacted to eliminate PACS and all forms of corporate donations, and individual contributions should be limited to level the playing field for the average American voter.

    4] Congressional benefits should not be free, as some of their medical benefits are presently at the military hospitals.

    5] Corporations should be taxed or penalized for taking jobs out of the country when unemployment is above a certain percentage such as 3%. The higher the percentage of unemployment in the United States, the higher the tax or penalty.

    6] Comprehensive income tax reform (read: simplification), without loopholes should be enacted, leaning towards a sales tax on purchases, based on annual gross income; the higher your income, the higher your sales tax.

    7] A thorough review of all personal and business conflicts of interest for each member of congress. While serving in congress, no member or their spouses, should have holdings in any corporation or business nor be a member of any board of directors. Their job in congress should be their sole interest and focus.

    I am sure there are flaws in my suggested solutions, however, I believe that if we eliminate some of the MAJOR obstacles and influences that have distorted the effectiveness of our government, we would be off to a good start.

  30. VernosB wrote,

    "I actually agree with you. I'd rather have Mr. Casler than Louie Gohmert, Allan West or Michele Bachmann, or any of the other whackjob politicians on The Hill."

    Now this is funny. We all know Louie Gohmert is way, way, out there. And Allan West, well, he's out. You can't forget Michele Bachmann. One has to wonder how did they get elected. I mean, what were the voters thinking?

    Just to be clear, our very own Michael Casler would round circle around those three.

  31. What is clear, the results of Presidential Election were as expected. Republicans lost the election. The House Republicans are largely responsible for the uncertainty the business community is talking about. Uncertainty. That is and will be the main goal of the extreme House Republicans.

    For the past 3 1/2 years the House Republicans held a steady drum through the National media saying America is in decline. They refused to pass the Job Bill President Obama proposed. They caused the USA credit rating to decline. The House Republicans will not agree with President Obama on the Fiscal Cliff. Look for House Republicans to stand on their position and end the year without an agreement.

  32. To those who say say that Casler would make a good candidate (assuming he would consider that at some point now) you are doing exactly what I have advocated. That is, for people to band together and put new faces on the ballot who actually stand for what you want.

    It would be almost impossible to get Michael on as either a Democrat or a Republican because of the primary process. But he (or someone else) could run as an independent, or with a third party. The advantage of the third party is that there would be some funds and other resources available from the national organization.

    The main point is that besides trying to work with existing representatives, replace them where possible with people who will actually do what they are sent to do. That is how a third party is born and grows to be a significant voice. That is also how the TEA Party managed to gain such influence in Congress.

  33. It's nice to see my name mentioned by a few of you, but of those that did, I can't see any of you supporting me.

    I am fiscally conservative, meaning I do not support continuing to deficit spend.

    I would support changes to Medicare and Social Security as well as Defense spending.

    I would implement E-verify for employers and provide a path to citizenship for illegals already here that have not committed a crime, if they paid a fine and met other requirements.

    I would make it so illegals coming here could not get employment or benefits, just like Mexico does to people who cross its borders illegally.

    I would not get America involved in military action in other countries without a formal declaration of war from Congress.

    I would propose public financing of campaigns, Congressional term limits and lobbying reform.

    I would push Congress to eliminate or modify the filibuster and cloture rules.

    I would push for a balanced budget amend to the Constitution.

    I would push for a complete re-write of the income tax code so we had 3 rates and very few deductions.

    I'd actually implement the savings the Congressional study finds each year due to waste in government.

    There are a thousand other things, but those are ones that come to mind easily and quickly.

    EVERYONE would have to pay income taxes if they had an income...on a progressive scale.


  34. Michael,

    You also, I think, would not oppose a lot of social issues that are essentially civil rights issues, i.e. reproductive rights and same sex marriage.

    I would wager that most moderates and independents have reasonably similar views and tolerances in that most can support or accept fiscal responsibility based on rational principles, and most can support or accept the social rights of others.

    The major parties today draw hard and fast ideological lines that largely leave the rational middle disappointed or left out.

    So yes, I think you would have more support than you think because you promote and listen to reasonable argument and are willing to modify your stance based on the result.

  35. FYI, the Whig candidate, Pat Martin, polled slightly more than the Libertarian candidate in OK CD5. What makes this important is that Pat is a first time candidate and will run again in 2014, this time with ballot access as a Whig.

    You can see the full results here:

    It might not seem like much, to out-poll the Libertarians is significant for the first time out. I have little doubt the same would happen here in Nevada. And ballot access for an individual candidate is much easier to obtain, only 250 signatures for a statewide or national office. (100 for a local office.)

    By the way, I would like add that I, and I suspect several others here, think that Casler would not allow religious beliefs to dictate a position. That is one of the hallmarks of a moderate.

  36. El_Lobo,

    Sadly there is a lot of truth in what you say. But the game is changing in some ways. Social media has seen to that.

    Yes, it takes money to mount a campaign. But thanks to social media and the Internet it doesn't take nearly as much to reach a very large audience. For example, targeted ads on Facebook are very reasonable.

    The fact that there are a number of people voicing some agreement for a candidate such as Michael, who come from different perspectives yet seeking a common goal, indicates that maybe the time *is* ripe for a new party that addresses the concerns of those in what I call the rational middle.

    Again I say, there is no reason not to try it.

  37. boftx and Michael,

    I mean no disrespect, but you both give me concerns.

    During the campaign, regardless of NOTA, you both were so aligned in your comments with the Republican party, including Tea/Republican issues, that I cannot see much of a difference between the Republicans and the Whigs at this moment. That may be unavoidable due to the history of the Republican/Whig Party.

    It seems there must be a clearer definition of Whigs that would differentiate them from Republicans in order to attract sufficient numbers to grow as a third party. Otherwise, the Whigs might be considered a quarter part of one party of the two and a half party system. (Republican/Tea/Whig and Democrats)

    The problems we have today are based on two realities, seen by those who are selective in a way they want to see. The result is slim to no good work produced in Congress.

    To have a really fair system, all limitations, redistricting and restrictions should be removed from all parties and they should all run candidates for office from local to federal.

    Let the public hear from all the parties and make their choices and vote.

    The Electoral College could then vote on the percentage of votes for each candidate. Perhaps we would even see some coalitions, if the Constitution were amended.

    I want to see some clear differences not shadows of what we have now.

    The Republicans enlisted the Tea Party into their party. The Tea Party could have become a third party but evidently some wanted a fast track to power. The Whigs could do the same. They might offer some moderation to what the Republican party is now. However, as I said, I don't see much difference in what I have read here.

    Also, party platforms or beliefs are ideals, not necessarily reality. So, what people present in comments is more telling of what the popular party ideology may actually be. A party is the people who belong to it, not the paper of well thought out ideals.

  38. Bradley,

    Your two parter on the two racist youths was fabulous. Very inspiring.

    Would it work on Democrats and Republicans in Congress? Hmmmm! I wonder. They both have alot more influencing their positions, plans, and decisions than the two youths.

    They also may not be that different, so no guarantee that the People would end up with anything different from what he have now.

  39. peacelily,

    The short answer is that the Modern Whigs have a social conscience that the Republicans lack, a sense of civic responsibility that the Libertarians lack, and a sense of personal responsibility to society that the Democrats have lost. Thrown into the mix is our own pragmatism that leads to genuine compromise.

    Of course there are similarities to all of the mentioned parties, but we take the best ideas from each and apply our own ideas and methodology to arrive at what we think are reasonable solutions to the problems we face today.

  40. Bradley,

    In regards to the selection of Popes, there are no less political interests involved in the process.

    There is plenty of campaigning and influencing before the Cardinals are locked in the Sistine Chapel. By that time they have narrowed the candidates down to a handful.

    There are popular favorites and political favorites. There was an advantage to Italian Cardinals, but in the case of the current Pope, he had been the head of the influential and powerful Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, previously known as the Supreme Sacred Congregation of the Roman and Universal Inquisition. He was diligent and strict in his work to keep the doctrine and dogma of the Church intact.

    He was a trusted adviser to Pope John Paul II.

    As a result, he was a political favorite to become Pope.

    Additionally, he was German, at a time when the Catholic Church was losing membership and influence in Europe. He was thought to be a good choice to bring the Europeans back to the faith. Here is a very good article about the European Church that will show you why the selection of a German Pope might have been considered important.

    The popular favorite was a Brazilian Cardinal that was seen to bring back poor Latin American Catholics that were leaving for evangelical churches in droves.

    I think as far as a Divine Intervention goes, it depends on the times, and what is needed most.

    There are two aspects of the Church. One is the Institutional and the other is the Prophetic. The Prophetic role is to call for reform, as one can note in Vatican II reforms.

    Whenever the Institutional Church starts getting off tract, the Prophetic Church comes to the fore, and the Holy Spirit becomes evident.

    The current Pope has not lived up to the expectations of bringing Europe back into the fold. In fact, it is quite the opposite because of his role in some controversies as Bishop in Germany.

    There is another interesting element that influences the selection of Popes.

    In Pope John Paul II having been a Pole and living under both Nazi occupation and Communism, we can see the import of his selection in a time of the dissolution of the Soviet Union to come unbeknownst at the time of his selection. He was inclined to appointing anti-Communist Cardinals, and thus very conservative. He appointed many which changed the balance.

    The then more conservative Cardinals outnumbered the others, and the conservative Pope Benedict XVI was chosen, and more conservative Cardinals appointed by him.

    The next Papal conclave may be very interesting given the conservative bent of the Cardinals and the still hemorrhaging membership around the world. Will it be time for the Prophetic Church, in the Holy Spirit, to speak again and call for repentance and reform? Nobody knows, but the anticipation is breathtaking.

  41. boftx,

    Thank you! Interesting short answer that opens a very large bin of observations and questions, the answers of which are best discovered by those interested in Modern Whigs. I trust the thoughtful will find answers.

  42. Future,

    "right out of the Sal Alinsky play book."

    The only time I read Saul Alinsky's book, Rules for Radicals, was when it was recommended reading by the extreme right wing organization, the John Birch Society. I purchased it from their book table at a meeting.

    Even the conservative author William F. Buckley credited Saul Alinsky as "very close to being an organizational genius."

    It never again was mentioned or recommended or sold by any group I have participated in, either secular or religious, including what you might consider the "left", although not so, unless you consider the Catholic Church a leftist organization, or the teachings of Jesus in Scripture leftist teachings.

    The next time Saul Alinsky came before my eyes was from the ultra conservatives in the LVSun Opinion forum.

    There must be some fascination for the more radical concervatives regarding this very old book.

    The only thing I think I remember from 'Rules for Radicals' was based on Newton's Third Law of Motion, 'to every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction', (a popular phrasing of the law).

    Maybe it wasn't in the book, but I think today's politics pretty well demonstrate the concept, in actions and words.

  43. transplanted,

    Good list! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  44. Michael Casler's openly campaign speech and platform.

    You all can read the Posted Nov. 30, 2012 10:28 a.m

    Now Michael, you have to get Republicans, Democrats and Independents to come to the middle. How do you propose to do that?

    Your post placed your stake in the recorders office of politics. Don't move from your position. Hold your ground. Don't let the extremes pull you from your position. Don't let Big Money buy your ethics,...ethics then become corruption.

    Seriously, your post at Nov. 30, 2012 10:28 a.m is solid! You could win on that platform. But not as a Republican or a Democrat. As a independent, yes.

  45. Longtimevegan,

    I concur, Michael's post was an excellent position statement. Add in some social issues and it would be well rounded.

    If Michael can be persuaded to run, how many here would consider signing a nomination petition to get him on the ballot?