So far the numbers for the GOP look good in Texas. The Democrats' statewide campaigns for the most part either have no message, no money or no energy. So for Republicans, it's all about avoiding complacency and making sure our voters vote in significant numbers.
Because that is the only way we lose.
Should The GOP Go Bold
In The Last Month Before Elections?
TCR says yes. The GOP in the Contract with America in 1994 galvanized the electorate and made clear to voters what the GOP would do in the majority, and they did it. There are other examples of the power of ideas in elections like the Kemp-Roth tax cut plan unveiled in 1978 and the rebuilding national security initiative in 1980.
Doing so means the GOP answer to Democrats calling us "the party of no" is that here is what you get if you put the GOP in the majority.
Two big ideas being talked about nationally are (1) abolish the IRS as we know it and enact simplified and significant tax reform, which minimizes IRS discretion and makes them effectively an accountant, (2) national security 2014 - we need to revive the U.S.'s ability to use its power and influence the world in a positive manner. As noted in this issue, Obama is strangling our military with the phase out of Tomahawk cruise missiles he is using in the war on ISIS with no replacements on the horizon.
As noted commentator Fred Barnes said recently, "... promoting ideas you believe in is critical to the country's ascendancy and the willingness to take a political hit in advancing them - that's the mark of leadership."
And by doing so, we also may achieve a great victory that means something.
Harris County 2014: Down Ballot Is Where It's At And District Attorney Race Is Tops
With straight ticket dominating Harris County votes recently there is no reason to think this year will be different.
This year down ballot incumbent Republican judges have a story to tell the citizens of Harris County relating to how they make a difference in a positive way.
The highest level race in Harris County is the District Attorney's race where current District Attorney Devon Anderson (R) takes on challenger Kim Ogg (D).
Both are well qualified, but it is clear despite the misguided comments about Devon Anderson in the Houston Chronicle editorial against her, she is deserving of retention.
Among the items the Chronicle messed up, the new marijuana diversion program initiated by Anderson is not a new one, but instead an expansion of Anderson's highly successful pre-trial diversion program in juvenile courts, which since inception has diverted over ten thousand young people from the criminal justice system and has a success rate of over 80%! Many of the young people were charged with possession.
Devon Anderson is a conservative reformer who has gotten things done and will continue to build the kind of District Attorney's office we can be proud of.
Did You Know, As Obama Bombs ISIS He Is Using Weapons He Wants To Phase Out?
President Obama's initial ISIS strike used 47 Tomahawk cruise missiles. A factoid - Obama's defensive budget proposes eliminating them by 2016! The 47 launched last week were almost half of the Tomahawks Obama planned to buy in 2015.
So here is a question for Democrats. What will you fire on our enemies when we run out of cruise missiles? That is why we need a GOP House and Senate and pro-national security Republican Presidents.
Is An Education Gap Fueling Income Inequality?
TCR Comment: With thanks to the Guild Premium Global Market Commentary on how education failings are fueling income inequality that will only create problems for a future America. As conservatives, we need to reform our education system, so that we are preparing our students for 21st century jobs.
"Whether one is accepting or skeptical of (Thomas) Piketty's claims and data (in his book Capital in the 21st Century), there is one point we think is crucial in any discussion of income inequality, and that is the role of education. We've spoken about this point many times, and our attention was recently drawn to it again when we saw the 2014 publication of the OECD's Education at a Glance - an annual publication of global statistics on education and its effects on economic wellbeing. Some of the date from this report were highlighted in a New York Times op-ed, and we found them concerning. For example:
· Only 30% of Americans end up exceeding their parents' educational levels, far worse than most of the U.S.' peers;
· Of Americans aged 25 to 34 whose parents didn't finish high school, only one in 20 has a college degree; developed economies in the OECD average one in four."
"The historical process driving these trends is clear…. After the Second World War, the U.S. led the world in its citizens' educational achievements - in the days when 'achievement' meant a high-school diploma, and a high-school diploma was enough to offer a ticket to a well-paid industrial job.
"Now, automation and the entry of developing-world workforces into global labor market of developing-world workforces into the global labor market has meant that a high-school education is no longer enough - and so the divergence between economic outcomes for high-school and college grads has sharply widened over the past generation.
The Obama Apology Tour
"Some countries, notably Germany, have attacked this problem with robust vocational training as an alternative to the pursuit of a bachelor's degree. Germany is known for its highly skilled industrial workforce, which has permitted it to retain global dominance in precision manufacturing. In the U.S., the conversation has focused almost exclusively on state support for university education - which some argue has actually pushed the price of that education higher, and further out of reach of those who need it most.
Won't End Until January 2017
In the latest apology of Obama's ongoing apology tour at the U.N. last week, Obama made the case for going to war with ISIS and yet again he found room in the speech to apologize again for America, which has nothing to do with his subject.
So in ending his U.N. remarks he said, "I realize that America's critics will be quick to point out... that America has plenty of problems within our own borders. ... I know the world also took notice of the small American city of Ferguson, Missouri - where a young man was killed, and a community was divided." And this is an apology for a tragic incident we still don't know all the facts about.
One other ridiculous thing he did was insist Islam has nothing to do with the Islamic State. Not true, maybe he should recognize the nature of the enemy. Now to be fair, not all Muslims are terrorists, but ISIS and the Radical Islamic group are Muslim.
And the American people are not fooled by him, as exemplified by his plunging approval rating on foreign policy led national security with 35% favorable, 58% disapprove per RCP Poll Tracking (Real Clear Politics)
For Whom the Terrorists Toll, He Tolls for Thee
By Bruce Bialosky, Contributing Editor
The raging debate in America about involving our military in action in the Middle East casts a fascinating twist for the debate participants. Those who argue for restraint or what some would characterize as passivity clearly seem to me to be the first ones the terrorists would like to murder.
We must first understand whom we are fighting. Those who object to our use of military force would say that the enemy is unclear. They would be correct at times. After all, we (Obama) worked actively to depose Mubarak in Egypt and Gaddafi in Libya. The people who replaced Mubarak in Egypt turned out to be worse and Americans who cheer democracy and freedom have to be thankful that there was a military takeover and a faux election in Egypt establishing el-Sisi as the new head of government. He may not be George Washington, but he is imminently better than the Muslim Brotherhood being in charge. Also, comparing that to the apparent chaos in neighboring Libya makes one appreciate the existing stability to Egypt.
There is some clarity to who we are fighting and have been for many years. Some would trace it back to the Muslim Brotherhood or Al Qaeda. The biggest problem generates from the lack of direction coming from our current leadership. An example was the Administration’s entire defense of the Benghazi disaster. They created this mantra that the participants were not "core Al Qaeda" as if Americans could possibly make heads or tails of that nonsense. To most every American a terrorist is a terrorist is a terrorist. And these days the almost all are Islamists. This Administration has done a disservice in defense of this country by not framing this clearly.
That is what Obama did once again when ISIS began to roll across Syria and Iraq. By minimizing the threat to the civilized world of groups like this and casting them in a different manner than other terrorists Americans mistakenly believe that somehow there is salvation for these groups or that they will not bother us.
What we need is lucidity regarding all these names. Al Qaeda, ISIS, Hezbollah, Taliban and Hamas are all the same. They are Islamic terrorists who hate the liberalism of modern society and want to destroy us for way we live not just for not being Muslims. Noah Beck recently wrote a comprehensible definition of the likenesses between ISIS and Hamas. There is very little difference. The Taliban acted similarly to ISIS when they controlled Afghanistan. Hezbollah has not been a tower of civility in Lebanon. Some of these groups have been embraced by the Left in Europe and America, but make no mistake they are nothing but murderous thugs using Islam as an excuse to rape and murder.
Medea Benjamin, co-founder of Code Pink, presents a classic example of a misguided believer. I have not met the lady, but I have seen her expressing her thoughts on various shows. I can guarantee you that she favors strongly women’s and gay rights. The Code Pink website is all about women (there is no mention of gay rights on there). Yet, she has allowed herself and her organization to be used as a shill for Hamas. Hamas is not stupid so when she went to Gaza they did not rape or kill her or both. They just used her and her organization for now to perpetuate their goals. There is nowhere noted that she talked to them about that second election they never had. The last one was 2006. Or the people they keep randomly killing to stay in power. People like Benjamin are the reason the term "Useful Fool" was developed. Israel is everything she believes in (the only country in the region is support of women’s and gay rights) and then she goes and embraces her and Israel’s philosophical enemy.
Code Pink and The ANSWER Coalition naively believe stopping America and our allies from wiping out these terrorists groups would reap rewards. Maybe because their members are not highly religiously observant they think them that if given the opportunity the thugs and miscreants would pass by them. The truth is the terrorists would attack them first -- rape the women, kill them and throw them in a hole. The reason the terrorists hate western civilization begins with all these stooges. Ask yourself would these terrorists start their rampage against those folks or Texans first? Texans would shoot them and the peace lovers would try to hug them while they were having their throats slit.
Our President embodies many of these instincts. He believes somehow by avoiding conflict we will not become involved or it will never touch us. He is supremely naďve. Obama certainly has done a few pinpricks. He is now leading a coalition of the unwilling because he is unwilling fighting the terrorists from 30,000 feet in the air. He brings to mind though what Lincoln wrote to General McClellan "If you are not using the army, I should like to borrow it for a short while."
Even The Pope figured out there is justification for using military force against these murderous gangsters. They would probably like to wipe out all of us, but their greatest joy would be killing and raping those who seem to embrace a peaceful path with them.
Bruce Bialosky is the founder of the Republican Jewish Coalition of California and a former Presidential appointee.
TCR on the Air
Red, White & Blue featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland, liberal commentator David Jones and moderator Linda Lorelle on Fridays at 7:30 pm on PBS Houston Channel 8.1, replaying Saturdays at 6:30 p.m. on Channel 8.1, Mondays at 11:30 pm on Channel 8.2 and on the web at www.houstonpbs.org.
The Harris County District Attorney showdown: A joint appearance with incumbent Devon Anderson (R) and challenger Kim Ogg (D).
The current show as well as past shows are available on YouTube.
About Your Editor
Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who completed three terms as the Harris County Republican Chairman. During his three terms, Gary was described as the most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events - The National Conservative Weekly. He is in his fifteenth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last thirteen years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. As a public service for the last 11 years, Gary has published election guides for the GOP primary, general elections and city elections, all with the purpose of assisting conservative candidates. Gary is also in his 14th year of co-hosting Red, White and Blue on PBS Houston, longest running political talk show in Texas history. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.