Archive for June, 2008
If you’re running a statewide ballot initiative campaign, these are the kind of numbers you want to see:
A national survey conducted jointly by the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post.com, and Quinnipiac University released Thursday shows that the majority of Colorado voters â€” Democrat and Republican alike â€” overwhelmingly support Amendment 46, also known as the Colorado Civil Rights Initiative. The proposed constitutional amendment would prohibit government from considering race or gender in education, government employment, or public contracting.
The poll, conducted last week, showed that 66 percent of all voters surveyed were supportive of the initiative’s language, with just 15 percent saying they were opposed. Democrats were much more likely to support the initiative than Republicans, with 71 percent of all registered Democrats surveyed supporting the initiative’s language, compared to 61 percent of all registered Republicans.
The Colorado Civil Rights Initiative is a winning issue for a variety of reasons, but mostly because it’s eminently fair, decent, and reasonable. (If this is the best argument against the Initiative, there is no wonder it’s polling so high.) The survey results are good news for Amendment 46.
Posted on June 26th, 2008 in Commemorative, General, Second Amendment | No Comments »
Once in awhile, the U.S. Supreme Court gets it right. Today that’s the case with the 5-4 landmark ruling in DC v Heller that overturns the Washington, D.C., gun ban and sets the Second Amendment on the solid terrain intended by our nation’s Founders. Around the Independence Institute, where research director Dave Kopel is one of the most renowned experts in the field, this makes for a busy day, and one of celebration.
Dave authored a friendly brief to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the Institute and numerous law enforcement organizations, providing evidence of how citizens owning firearms is important to public safety. Dave also was one of three attorneys who sat at plaintiff Heller’s table during the oral arguments before the Supreme Court earlier this year – an experience he recounts for an iVoices podcast with Jon Caldara.
Dave already gave an interview with local news giant 850 KOA this morning (and who knows what other interviews). He also said he’s working on articles for Pajamas Media, Human Events, and Reason – so you may want to check all those sites for more of his erudite commentary.
I’m waiting for Constructively Reasonable – a law student friend and 2nd Amendment fan – to weigh in.
But all told, Heller is a hugely important favorable decision that will yield lots of analysis and discussion in the coming days. Major congrats and thanks to Dave Kopel for his years of work on the issue, and a major sigh of relief that hopefully proves more than a respite among a recent spate of bad news from our courts and elected legislatures.
And today’s announcement of the decision is remarkably coincidental timing for the Independence Institute’s (sold out) ATF Party!
Posted on June 26th, 2008 in Colorado Politics, Fiscal Policy, General | No Comments »
The Rocky Mountain News reports today on outgoing House Speaker Andrew Romanoff’s intense efforts to place an initiative on the ballot that would forever end TABOR refunds for Colorado taxpayers. Of course, the skewed way the Rocky describes the ballot measure, you wonder what sensible person could oppose it:
While the rest of Colorado is hiking, rafting, barbecuing or putting in some serious hammock time, Romanoff, D-Denver, and a group of volunteers will hit the streets attempting to gather about 120,000 signatures from registered voters….
The proposal aims to unsnarl the fiscal knot of conflicting spending mandates and limits embedded in the state’s constitution.
Called SAFE (Savings Account for Education), the effort would seek to extend the fiscal relief that voters provided when they approved a 5-year timeout from the Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights. That timeout is set to expire in 2010.
Ari Armstrong has a better idea for Romanoff’s SAFE acronym:
The older SAFE stood for Sane Alternatives to the Firearms Epidemic. Call this one Statist Alternatives to the Freedom Epidemic.
Armstrong also suggests the tag “Referendum C: Part II,” since Romanoff’s new proposal basically concedes the 2005 multi-billion dollar permanent tax and spending increase just wasn’t quite enough. For the tax-consuming bureaucrats in state government, there is no such thing as enough.
Gutting TABOR, as this measure effectively would do, has been on the Democrat agenda for years. Colorado will be better off if Romanoff’s not-so “SAFE” initiative doesn’t qualify for the ballot.
Someone needs to invite Romanoff to go for a hike or to come over for a barbecue.
Posted on June 26th, 2008 in blogging, Colorado Politics, General, My Life, National Politics | No Comments »
The hackles have been raised over at the Dead Guvs, as a post by reliable conservative blogger El Presidente has been promoted to the front page: For whatever it’s worth, he highlights the revelation of the story behind the online debate between Bob Schaffer and Mark Udall that never materialized.
The debate was the brainchild of respectable liberal blogger David Thielen, who had hosted several of these debates during the Democratic primary. For the U.S. Senate race, he sought the fair and balanced approach, and I agreed to co-moderate. Kudos to David for promoting El Presidente’s entry, for verifying the facts presented, and for defending the truth against the slings and arrows of outrageous insults.
My already significant respect for Mr. Thielen has risen even higher. I expected (and was quite amused) to be called absurdly false names like “sockpuppet” and “paid shill.” He on the other hand is taking grief from people who generally agree with his political point of view.
Meanwhile, a watcher offers his own perspective on the excuse alleged by the Mark Udall campaign for running away from the online debate, in three parts: here (where he writes, “Mark Udall is, after all, a coward”), here, and here.
Quite an amusing saga that says more about Mark Udall and most of the Lefties who defend him on the Internet than anyone.
Posted on June 25th, 2008 in blogging, General, My Life | 6 Comments »
The Rocky Mountain Alliance 2.0 keeps growing: Welcome aboard Steve Nielson from The New Conservative (also a new father!). In his spare time, Steve is a Lockheed engineer, as well as the secretary of the Douglas County Republican Party. He’s also the third RMA member to be a graduate of the Leadership Program of the Rockies.
Make sure to bookmark his site for regular visits if you haven’t done so already. Welcome aboard, Steve!
Posted on June 25th, 2008 in Christianity and Faith, General, National Politics | 1 Comment »
NEW DELHI: With Democrat senator Barack Obama busy in the run-up to the US presidential polls, a group of well-wishers in the capital have decided to send him a symbol of his lucky charm, Lord Hanuman, to help him emerge victorious….
An hour-long prayer meeting to sanctify the idol was earlier organised at Sankat Mochan Dham and by Congress leader Brijmohan Bhama, Balmiki Samaj and the temple’s priests.
“Obama has deep faith in Lord Hanuman and that is why we are presenting an idol of Hanuman to him,” said Bhama.
This story gives a whole new meaning to the name “American Idol.” But seriously, this could add another layer of religious confusion to the ever-unfolding bizarre “Obamessiah” phenomenon.
Okay, we all know Barack Obama is not a Muslim. After all, Islam disdains idolatry, as at their core do Christianity and Judaism. So should Obama accept the Hindu idol? Apart from worrying about the fuel it might add to all the recent talk surrounding religion and his campaign, he also may wish to consider this first:
The monkey symbolism of Lord Hanuman is related to the notion that a human being’s mind is ever active and never restful, hence the depiction of a human being with the face of a monkey. Furthermore, Lord Hanuman symbolically stands for pure devotion, complete surrender and absence of ego or the lower self.
The “pure devotion” and “complete surrender” may refer to the blind legions following Barack Obama, but what about the “absence of ego”? It’s very hard to see how that would describe Obama himself. All told, one of the more curious political stories of the season.
Posted on June 25th, 2008 in blogging, General | No Comments »
Just in case you have missed this important news elsewhere… the group Moving America Forward is working to organize the largest ever care package shipment to U.S. military personnel. (More information from Rush Limbaugh and the San Francisco Chronicle.)
Here’s their goal:
…to send the largest single shipment of care packages in U.S. history. We’re hoping to collect sponsorships in excess of $500,000 for care packages by the end of the day Thursday.
How can you learn more and get involved? On Thursday, June 26, tune in to Hot Air’s “From the Front Lines.”
What a great way to show our nation’s appreciation to our troops and their families!
Posted on June 24th, 2008 in Climate Hysteria, Colorado Politics, Energy, General | 1 Comment »
Over at the Colorado Index, one of my new favorite bloggers Civil Sense clues readers in to a new taxpayer-funded television ad, starring our hapless Gov. Bill Ritter:
The ads range from 10 to 30 seconds, and they send a simple message: Turn down the thermostat, unplug unused appliances, turn off lights and use alternative transportation.
Good advice. I think I’ll be turning off the television whenever this commercial comes on my set.
Posted on June 24th, 2008 in Colorado Politics, General, National Politics | 5 Comments »
Oh joy, I’ve finally figured out who my Republican Congressional candidate is: John Lerew, not John LeGrew (how bad is it when your name gets misspelled in a key publication that introduces your candidacy to a key audience of activists?).
Longtime Colorado blogger Jack Ott, whom I met back in 2004, has posted information about Mr. Lerew. Certainly, he seems an ardent and passionate conservative, but it’s apparent the GOP went pretty deep onto the bench to bring him forward as the candidate. Or, as one Lefty blogger quite accurately put it, Mr. Lerew is “the sacrificial lamb” to run against incumbent Rep. Ed Perlmutter.
(I feel out of the loop to have taken so long to learn about this one. But it also speaks ill of the candidate’s credibility that he seemingly has no website to define his online presence, raise funds, recruit volunteers, etc. In 2008? A Congressional candidate, even a “sacrificial lamb” … no website? Sigh. We’ll learn eventually. Tune into The Next Right.)
Anyway, Jack Ott also has information about something hopefully of more lasting significance – that’s the new Denver metro chapter of the Coalition for a Conservative Majority – where incidentally, John Lerew evidently spoke at the last meeting. If you’re an ardent conservative looking to get involved as an activist, you should at least take a look at joining your local CCM chapter.
Posted on June 24th, 2008 in Cultural Conservatism, General, World Events | 2 Comments »
Say what? As absurd as some of our court decisions seem to be, the Euro-wannabes north of the border have trumped us when it comes to sheer lunacy (H/T Doug Bandow):
A recent court decision in Canada should send chills down every parentâ€™s spine. The ruling is so out of bounds that the news story sounds like a parody â€” but it isnâ€™t. A Canadian judge ruled that a 12-year-old girl was â€œexcessivelyâ€ punished when her father told her she could not go on a school camping trip because she had broken rules for use of the Internet.
O Canada, the nation with tribunals that enforce politically-correct government censorship of speech, now gives us micromanagement of parental responsibilities. Wherever Canada is, I fear the United States is not far behind. Let’s stand up against the nanny state!
Who do you want appointing federal judges next year: Barack Obama or John McCain? Sobering thought.
Posted on June 24th, 2008 in General, National Politics | No Comments »
I’ve been meaning to post this one for several days now. But enough excuses. Without further ado, here’s a creative video that will make you laugh and put a catchy tune in your head: I give you the inimitable Mary Katharine Ham with “Obama on Your Shoulder.”
Depending on how you look at it, the video could either make you feel a lot more lighthearted or a lot sicker to your stomach. Or maybe a bit of both. But laughter is the best medicine, they say.
Posted on June 23rd, 2008 in Colorado Politics, Cultural Conservatism, Fiscal Policy, General | No Comments »
Americans for Prosperity, a center-right grassroots organization currently focusing on encouraging responsible energy policy, has announced that it is opening shop in Colorado with its 22nd chapter. The effort is being headed up by social conservative Jim Pfaff, a former president of the Colorado Family Council known and praised for his ability to make nice with social libertarians.
This can’t be seen as a positive development by Colorado’s liberal Tim Gill-Pat Stryker-Mark Udall-Bill Ritter axis. Whenever the fiscal conservatives and social conservatives start playing nice, working behind a savvy and respected person like Jim Pfaff, that means the Left can’t fall back so easily on its “divide and conquer” strategy.
It’s still a long uphill climb, though, for Colorado supporters of limited government and fiscal responsibility. But the signs of a trend are encouraging.
Posted on June 21st, 2008 in Education, General, Labor, National Politics | No Comments »
A heated labor disagreement over Denver’s teacher contract appears to be heading into late August and could reach a boiling point during the Democratic National Convention, reports Jeremy P. Meyer.
Teachers and the administration are at odds over changes to the district’s compensation system. It’s one of the issues that led union officials to warn teachers in their May newsletter to prepare for a strike.
Mediation with a professional arbiter has been set for Aug. 20-22, ending the Friday before the Democrats arrive for the convention.
This has the potential to be ugly. I will be keeping a close eye not only on the broader political ramifications but on what this potential clash could portend for education reform and labor relations in our own backyard.
How surprised I was this morning as I went to the driveway to collect the newspapers to also find a cleverly packaged piece of white supremacist “nationalist” hate-group literature nearby on the ground. After opening it and being repulsed, I then looked around and saw that our house wasn’t the only one on the block to have been so greeted. With the help of my 2-year-old daughter, we walked the block and cleaned up more than a dozen pieces of trash littered along the sidewalk and street.
After writing this, I may come to find out that I inadvertently insulted the work of some local neo-Con blogger’s friends. Nevertheless, the kind of ideology littered along my street this morning is a repulsive affront to true Christian religion and our nation’s founding creed, the Declaration of Independence.
I’m glad to participate in this kind of neighborhood clean-up program: it’s community beautification on multiple levels.