How to Train Your Politician: Conservative Ed Hanks Urges Intentional Voting

How to Train Your Politician: Conservative Ed Hanks Urges Intentional Voting

On December 20, 2014, I chatted by phone with Ed Hanks about his new book How to Train Your Politician: Intentional Voting as a Path to Tea Party and Constitutional Victory. Hanks, an acquaintance and Jefferson County conservative activist who has been one of Colorado's leading voices for Personhood, graciously shared a Kindle copy of his book for me to read prior our conversation. We talked in the wake of the lame-duck Congress passing the corporatists' dream bill, known as Cromnibus, fueling the fires of populist conservative discontent (including yours truly). A mounting frustration definitely brings a growing interest in the strategy Hanks endorses. Yet what I find most appealing about the book and its author is his historical … [Read more...]

Ritter, Kennedy, and Morse Loosening Fiscal Knot for Taxpayers’ Necks

Today's Denver Post news story on Governor Bill Ritter's signing of Senate Bill 228 offers the generous headline: "Colorado's fiscal knot loosens". I've taken the liberty to complete the thought with my own sub-headline: "Noose nearly large enough to fit around taxpayers' necks". The article is correct insofar as it points out that the impact of this bill in repealing limits on the growth of discretionary government spending likely won't be felt for a couple years. But that provides little solace, especially when you listen to the righteous confusion coming from the Democratic cast of characters behind this anti-taxpayer legislation. … [Read more...]

Sine Die

It sounds like a garbled threat, or possibly a song from the High Mass. Sine die means neither, but it is cause for high celebration: The Colorado state legislature is adjourned for 2009, at least for the regular session. (I'm hearing insiders say that the Governor very well may call a special session in the summer.) In one sense, it's a shame to see the legislature walk away from its responsibility: Democrats have kicked the state's fiscal problems a little ways down the road. But then again, the majority Democrats aren't likely to grow a sense of responsibility any time soon. So staunch the bleeding while there's still time. Because, in fact, Democrats are now openly touting a recent state supreme court decision to say they can … [Read more...]

Thanks to What?: Posing a Clear Litmus Test Between Left and Right

Blogging for the Heritage Foundation, Conn Carroll points readers to a clear litmus test between the Left and the Right. If you followed that link and said, "Hey, that's not a bad idea, why didn't I think of that?" -- it's pretty safe to say you're on the Left. On the other hand, if you laughed out loud and/or your stomach turned upon reading it, you must be on the Right. But here's my thought: If we're going to be showing our gratitude for painful certainties that show no sign of abating, why not a campaign to get people to say Thanks for this? … [Read more...]

Hundreds of Iowa Taxpayers Kicked Out of Capitol: Is Colorado Watching?

Update: Here is a better link to Tax Day Tea Party information for all of Colorado. (H/T to Amy Oliver for this story) "Hundreds of Iowans" showed up at the State Capitol in Des Moines to protest a tax on a tax, and ended up getting forcibly ejected by the House Speaker. I've heard of "Iowa stubborn", but not "Iowa rowdy". Not exactly Howard Beale - but a pretty amazing display of organized populist outrage nonetheless. Maybe Colorado pro-liberty grassroots organizers could find something to learn from Iowans for Tax Relief. If you're a Colorado taxpayer not used to these sorts of things but are interested in getting involved, the Denver Tax Day Tea Party on April 15 is a good place to start. … [Read more...]

What a Weekend: Human Achievement Hour, “Green” Energy Taxes, & You

My big regret from a low-key weekend? That I somehow forgot to celebrate Human Achievement Hour. Kudos to all those who did, and made a statement for liberty. It's most interesting to me that this weekend's events closely follow the discovery that the infamous solar panels on the Denver Museum of Nature and Science likely won't come close to paying for themselves while state lawmakers seek to induce school districts into installing cost-inefficient "new" "green" energy. Speaking of higher taxes and energy prices for consumers like you and me, Paul Chesser takes on the cap-and-trade folly in the new American Spectator. At least here in the Denver area our big snow has all but melted away ... for now. … [Read more...]

Dig into UAW Golf Course Hijinks Before Obama Ends Union Disclosure

Perhaps you have seen the story about the United Auto Workers-owned golf course in northern Michigan and the controversy about the value of its property and tax history. Well, local blogger Chetly Zarko has dug even deeper to try to figure out why the facility's reported Pension Fund expenses are so high:The only explanation in my mind for this kind of pension fund investment is that the pension contributions are for SOMEONE ELSE other than the workers at the hotel. Just who might be receiving the long-term benefit of those contributions? It's not big enough to pay the pension debt of any serious number of rank-and-file union members - but it is big enough to sauce up a few individual's or union leadership. Or perhaps the UAW is using … [Read more...]

Democrat Rollie Heath Wants to Use Economic Downturn to Kill TABOR

It only took seven weeks after the voters of Colorado said no to a statewide proposal that would have gutted the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights (TABOR) - a proposal pushed by a campaign that heavily outspent the opposition - for the Democrats to be back at it again. From today's Denver Post:Rollie Heath, a Boulder Democrat elected to the Senate, said that as lawmakers grapple in the coming session with cutting as much as $600 million from the budget because of declining revenues, they should also look at TABOR, a revenue-capping provision of the state's constitution. The state is in a timeout from TABOR's tax-revenue limits, but that timeout expires in 2010, when Colorado will have to begin refunding to taxpayers any revenue it collects … [Read more...]

Putting Today’s Economy in Perspective

It's national election season, which means perspective on the economy is badly needed. Thanks to Rossputin for highlighting this article from economists Brian Wesbury and Robert Stein. Read the whole thing for yourself, but interesting tidbits are that family income last year hit its first all-time high in 7 years, income inequality declined faster than at any point in the previous 45 years, and the poverty rate stayed below its pre-1999 norms. Yes, economic growth has lagged, causing the country to flirt with recession. But according to Wesbury and Stein, "these figures bolster the case that the underlying fundamentals of the US economy were sound in 2007, before the Federal Reserve decided to try to inflate our way out of financial … [Read more...]