Despite Minor Flaws, Spielberg’s Lincoln Worthwhile Viewing for History Geeks

Finding enjoyable movie fare for American history geeks typically presents a challenge. The nature of the genre leaves diehard purists perpetually frustrated. Yet even those of us willing to allow some minor transgressions of fact or character to pass too often are disappointed by the shallow Hollywood luster that insults its audience and kicks a compelling true story to the curb. Now and again, though, one can leave the theater with a contented smile. On Friday evening my wife and I took in Lincoln at the local multiplex. The usher at Arvada's Olde Town Stadium Theatre entered the nearly packed auditorium and gave some introductory remarks about the movie's production and casting. The movie, already a long time in director Steven … [Read more...]

Supreme Court Campaign Case Pits Colorado Ethics Watch vs. Colorado Education Association

This little tidbit I uncovered either shatters the grand Colorado Democracy Alliance (CoDA) conspiracy theory or proves it to be even more convoluted and diabolical than previously imagined. But court documents show two of the Alliance's core groups -- sue-happy Colorado Ethics Watch (CEW) and the Colorado Education Association (CEA), the state's largest teachers union -- on opposite ends of a state supreme court case regarding elections law. Back in 2008 CEW filed suit against a couple of Republican 527 groups (Senate Majority Fund LLC and Colorado Leadership Fund LLC) claiming that they had overstepped the bounds of campaign finance law by participating in "express advocacy" of state legislative candidates. The administrative law judge … [Read more...]

New MAD Video: Debt Ceiling

Mothers Against Debt (MAD) has launched a powerful video update about the crushing load of national debt we already face and the danger behind plans to raise the debt ceiling: Don't crush the baby! As a dad of two (and soon to be three) young girls, the message hits home with me. Fiscal responsibility and spending discipline, already fixtures in our own household budget, are the watchwords of the day for the federal government Leviathan. Delaying today's decisions only magnifies tomorrow's pain. Let's start imposing the bitter medicine. Our children will thank us later. … [Read more...]

Lincoln’s “Better Angels of Our Nature”: For Wisconsin 150 Years Later?

It's easy to overlook, especially if you're not a student of U.S. history. But once upon a time, before the ratification of the 20th Amendment to the Constitution, presidents were inaugurated on March 4. Which makes today the sesquicentennial (that's the 150th anniversary, for Buckeye fans) of Abraham Lincoln swearing the oath of presidential office in a moment of profound national crisis and delivering his First Inaugural Address:We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the … [Read more...]

Irony, Hypocrisy (and Independence?) in Lefties’ Anti-Koch Brother Campaign

Update, 9:00 PM: Common Cause issued a formal "apology" for the vile behavior of its rally attendees, a statement thoroughly deconstructed by James Taranto, who concludes with the zinger: "For the sake of truth in advertising, Common Cause should change its name to Hypocrisy Hub." Ouch. That's going to leave a mark. Independent new media journalist Christian Hartsock has a compelling piece up at Andrew Breitbart's Big Government blog. Hartsock went to cover an event sponsored by the Progressive group Common Cause. The goal seemingly was to organize a grassroots protest of the pro-free market billionaire Koch Brothers and conservative U.S. Supreme Court justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas for some imaginary collusion on the … [Read more...]

How to Get Fired: Mothers Against Debt Takes On Unemployment Benefits

A preeminent challenge lying ahead for our elected Congress to tackle is the mounting debt and out-of-control spending that grew under Republican leadership and accelerated in the past few years with Democrats in charge. No one is better prepared to help equip you to do your citizen's part in taking on this challenge than my friends at Mothers Against Debt. Their new video on the idiocy of unemployment benefits as economic stimulus is a real hoot. Enjoy: … [Read more...]

Twenty-Eleven Means I’m Back

The New Year has arrived, and my long hiatus from serious blogging is over. For any blogger, a long hiatus can be a dangerous proposition -- threatening the already tenuously small readership and helping people to forget about you. Look, many of you already were going to forget about me anyway over the Christmas / New Year holiday anyway. And having blogged here for nearly seven years (can you believe that?), I felt secure enough to take the time off. But one major reason for the break was to gear up mentally and spiritually for the battles that lie ahead. Contributing to all the apparently positive gains in the 2010 elections, in Congress and elsewhere? That took some effort, to be sure. The real challenge lies ahead, however -- among … [Read more...]

Colorado GOP Candidates Who Fell Short But Can See Bright Futures

A full week has passed since the Election. We all know the results. For the winners it's transition time. New members headed off to Congress -- at least one pegged with a remarkably bright political future. I'm proud to see a new secretary of state in Colorado, a new state treasurer, not to mention the "Mighty Six" GOP upstarts who took over formerly Democratic seats to reclaim the state house majority. But what about those Colorado Republican candidates who threw their hats into the ring, who entered the arena and did battle, yet came up short? Some of them we won't see on the electoral stage again (in some cases, thankfully). For others, a potentially bright political future remains. Here are a few: … [Read more...]