Saturday, July 31, 2010

Institutional Arrogance


I’ve said it once and I’ll say it before. No one is above the law. And no one is more important than the people he or she serves.

When I was at a meeting for candidates at the Hagerstown Herald-Mail last month, I had realized something rather simple, but powerful. The editor had thanked everyone for coming and complimented us on our decision to run. As he emphasized the importance of those seeking political office, it really started to hit home. The office is what is important, not as much the person running for the office.

I would imagine there are those in Congress who somewhere along the way, have lost the appreciation for the importance of the office, and rather thought that they were more important than the office (and the people) they served.

It is arrogant for the government to think that it knows best. It is arrogant for the government to think that all of our problems may be solved by passing laws. It is arrogant for an elected official to think that only he or she could serve his or her constituents.

If you think about it – in your State or Congressional District, do you believe that there is only one person who would be able to serve? Obviously the person in office would want you to think that. The political party “in power” would want you to think that only it represents you. That is a load of “horse pucky”, as my Dad sometimes says.

Last week, just out of curiosity, I tried a Google search for the “number of laws passed in the United States.” I could not get an answer from the first two pages of search results. My guess is, that short of the Library of Congress, or someone who works directly with the Congressional Record, that no one really has an idea how many laws there are on the books.

One item I did find, on WikiAnswers, was a gentleman who stated (I’m paraphrasing), that “Congress hasn’t been as active this year because it hasn’t passed as many laws.”

Is that what we’ve come to – the number of laws equal activity and productivity? You have got to be kidding me. What if we could revise or repeal a law that is already on the books?

As Congressman Reed, serving the Sixth Congressional District of Maryland in the United States House of Representatives, repealing the healthcare legislation would be one of my first priorities.

As a sidenote, and I am sorry to say that this is not a joke, I am seriously considering playing a DVD of Schoolhouse Rock’s “I’m Just a Bill” in the House Chamber. I will allow no “deeming and passing” in the Congress that I serve.

Monday, July 19, 2010

A Warning to Republicans About the Tea Party Movement

A Warning to the Republican Party about the Tea Party Movement

Based on the Tea Party movement’s successes in driving Republicans, conservatives and otherwise) into trying to court their voters and win their approval, it would be easy to assume that the GOP will make huge gains this coming November riding the coattails of this extraordinary group of individuals.

However, the Republicans should not make the fatal assumption that the Tea Party Movement will file lock step into their polling places voting Republican across the board.

The Tea Party is about liberty.

The Tea Party is about adherence to the Constitution.

The Tea Party is about promoting conservatism, not socialism or extremism.

The Tea Party is not an extension of the Republican Party.

The Tea Party is not funded by the GOP or the Republican National Committee.

The Tea Party is not run and operated by the Republican Party.

I have read Tea Party members’ blogs, and posts and tweets and comments, and I find them highly educated and well-versed in how our Federal government has been run from one extreme to the other. They have witnessed the unconstitutional takeover of the healthcare industry, the automobile industry, the financial industry by the Democratic administration. Alternatively, they have also witnessed the astonishing encroachment on personal liberty by the previous Republican administration in passing the Patriot Act. The Tea Party Movement, it is safe to say, is more likely well-versed in the provisions of the U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence and Federalist Papers, than many members of Congress.

There is an anti-incumbency wave sweeping throughout the United States, not merely an anti-Democratic Party wave. The GOP should be wise to acknowledge this, or their anticipated victories in 2010 might be very short-lived.

The members of the Tea Party Movement are watchdogs of liberty, not lap dogs to the GOP.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

THE "DR. SEUSS" DILEMMA

“And Sally and I did not know what to do, so we had to shake hands with

Thing 1 and Thing 2.”

Dr. Seuss, The Cat in the Hat – 1957, Random House/Beginner Books.

* * *

I originally wanted to title this piece, The Truth About Cats and Dogs. But I recently read the children’s classic, The Cat in the Hat to my daughter last week, and I thought it would be more appropriate.

Every two years we have Congressional elections in the United States. Every four years we have Presidential and Gubernatorial elections in the United States, with Senatorial elections staggered in between.

Unfortunately during these election cycles, we share the same dilemma that Sally and her brother shared in facing the Cat in the Hat’s playthings. We had to choose between Thing #1 (Democrats) and Thing #2 (Republicans).

In its most positive and generous light, Thing #1 “traditionally stands for the right of the poor to government assistance; the right of ethnic and religious minorities to an equal place in our society; regulation of big business and trade; protection of the environment; multilateral nuclear disarmament; and increased foreign aid to impoverished countries.” (http://www.politicalcortex.com/story/2007/6/8/121250/0438 by Just060807)

However, it could also be argued, that Thing #1 stands for higher taxes, less choice, anti-war, pro-abortion, socialist policies pertaining to health care, finance and government; and activist judges who legislate their own agenda.

In its most positive and generous light, Thing #2 “traditionally stands for the right to life of each human person from conception to death; a free marketplace; limited government; a strong (but not bloated) national defense; secure borders; fiscal responsibility; and strict interpretation of the Constitution.” (http://www.politicalcortex.com/story/2007/6/8/121250/0438 by Just060807)

However, it could also be argued that Thing #2 stands for Big Business, Big Oil, pro-war (declared war or otherwise), legislative morality, and beholden to corporate lobbyists' direction.

There is another option, however. I promise that I will work tirelessly for you. Like you, I cringe when I hear politicians say that they will “fight for you”, and “create jobs.” The truth is, it is expected that an elected representative will fight for you; Otherwise, what is he or she doing running for office? And the most basic way to create jobs is to ease the suffocating tax burden on both individuals and businesses. There is anger, discouragement, fear and discontent out there, and it seems to come from the massive disconnect between the elected and the voters that put them there.

As soon as I take the Congressional Oath of Office*, I first plan to attach two amendments to ANY bill introduced on the House Floor.

1st - All members of Congress hereby affirm that he or she has read, in its entirety, the entire bill herein introduced.

That way, we will never have a House member state, "We have to pass the bill to find out what is in it."

2nd - All members of Congress shall be subject to the bill herein introduced, and agree to be subject to its provisions, should it be passed into law.

The health care bill passed into law at over 2000+ pages, and the financial reform bill (which at this date is expected to clear the Senate with 60 votes), and weighs in at another 2000+ pages of length. If these laws directly affect these members of Congress, perhaps they may take better care to pass laws that protect us all. Just a thought.

* Congressional Oath of Office: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God."

Friday, July 9, 2010

Deficit hits $1 trillion in June for second year - The Hill's On The Money

Deficit hits $1 trillion in June for second year - The Hill's On The Money
By Walter Alarkon - 07/08/10 10:46 AM ET

It is simply astounding...please read, and keep in mind $1 trillion looks like this:

$1,000,000,000.00

This must stop now.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Happy Fourth of July


This weekend we celebrate fifty-six men who stood up against an oppressive tyrannical government, by signing their names to the Declaration of Independence. May we always have the courage - and the freedom - to speak out against government when it acts in excess of its mandated authority as granted in the Constitution. Have a safe holiday weekend, spending time with family, friends and loved ones.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Wanted: A Few Good Men and Women to Help Make History

The Reed for Maryland Campaign is accepting applications for volunteers who want to change the way business is done in Washington.

We are looking for the following volunteer positions in four areas:

Area 1 - Team Leader and Team Members – Media and Public Relations:

Media and Public Relations volunteers will assist in the monitoring news, radio, TV and social media platforms and help in coordinating rapid response capability

Area 2 - Team Leader and Team Members – Budget and Finance:

Budget and Finance volunteers will assist in the tracking of expenditures and budget planning

Area 3 - Team Leader and Volunteers – Platform and Policy:

Platform and Policy volunteers will be familiar with the Constitution Party’s platform, and track current events and legislation

Area 4 - Team Leader and Volunteers – Campaign Strategy and Planning:

Campaign Strategy and Planning volunteers will assist the candidate with campaign decisions involving event participation, planning and booking, and will work in conjunction with the other Area Teams.


Please submit the following to reedformaryland@gmail.com:

a. A resume, and cover email, including:

b. Your two areas of preference in the capacity you wish to volunteer

c. A few sentences why you wish to volunteer for the Reed for Maryland campaign

d. Selected candidates will be contacted for an in-person or phone interview

e. Citizens living in the Sixth Congressional District are preferred, but all help is welcome

We look forward to hearing from you.