Las Vegas Sun

October 22, 2014

Currently: 84° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

Letter to the editor:

Why the Tea Party objects to Obama

In response to Debbie Starr’s letter, “The GOP and the presidential race,” she said, in part, “To be fair, there is enough blame to go around in both parties,” and it is a good thing for her to recognize because this is what started the Tea Party.

They are Republicans, Democrats and independents who are sick and tired of the way our government has gone astray by both parties and want us to return to the Constitution and fiscal responsibility. It is not, as she and so many others have tried to make it, a racial thing. It’s the man, not his race, that we object to, and we would have objected to him becoming our president regardless of what political party he belonged to because he lacked experience and his history was unknown.

Actually, the desires of both parties are very much alike. Don’t we all want a financially strong country and a Congress that has our best interests at heart, not politics? Don’t we want to see everyone succeed according to their own abilities and desires, free from controls that stifle progress and dreams?

Please look at all the controversy that has surrounded this president lately and try to be objective by asking yourself, “If Obama had been a Republican, would I have put up with all this?”

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 57 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. Good letter!

  2. Four comments lead off the discussion with three being from the usual right wing trolls. "Letter of the year"...Seriously? Apologist drivel would be a better description.

    I will not delve into subjects in this comment that have been gone over time after time, with the same results. Polarized politics is the name of the game, and has been since before this President ever came to the office. It has it's roots in the politics of Richard Nixon and the southern strategy. Folks like George Wallace and Lester Maddox practiced the worst kind of racially motivated politics then, and the southern "Red" states are practicing it to this day. Add homophobia and the singling out of women as the subject of draconian laws passed in "Red" state legislatures. Now, even the voting rights act is being assaulted, and in the very near future, the Supreme Court will weigh in. Immigration reform is also on the laundry list of GOP intransigence, and will go nowhere during this congress. All the while, the GOP continues the charade that they want to be an "inclusive" party...as long as it is made up of lily white, right wing uber-conservatives.

  3. My, my, what vitriol from the "non-judgmental" left. Having no real argument to boster their Commie-lite agenda, they resort to name calling. Everyday, additional horror stories pour forth from the pig sty known as Washington DC as to how the Constitutional rights of ALL Americans are being subverted by Osama Obama and his fellow travelers. Any of you have a cell phone? You have been and are being surveilled by an intrusive and law-breaking federal government. Do you not care? Are you so blinded by ideology that you will ignore your liberties being eroded in ways unimaginable just a short time ago? If so, you deserve what you get.

  4. http://www.thenation.com/article/174669/...

    Thirty two letters from GOP hypocrites wishing to tap into a 30 billion dollar fund to "help their constituents". All voted against the Affordable Care Act publicly, but privately it's another matter. The fact is that the only reason the 30 billion is even available to be tapped is BECAUSE OF OBAMACARE. The money would otherwise be unavailable to these hypocrites. The letters are all posted, and were obtained by journalist Lee Fang under the Freedom of Information Act. Those who post on this blog professing to "care" should take the time to read the article and the attached letters. You see, it's not that they privately hate Obamacare, it's that they privately hate Obama.

    Sorry about the link, but go to the website and the article is easy to find.

  5. Oops...it appears the link is good after all. I encourage all folks on both sides of the political spectrum to read it.

  6. Jerry Fink,

    " My,my, what vitriol from the" non - judgmental " left.Having no real argument to bolster their Commie- lite agenda,they resort to name calling.Everyday,additional horror stories pour forth from the pig sty known as Washington DC as to how the Constitutional rights of All Americans are being subverted by Osama Obama and his travelers."

    Mr Fink, what would you call the words you typed in your response above such as COMMIE-LITE, PIG STY,and addressing the President of the United States as OSAMA OBAMA. If you don't think your choice of words are name calling guess again.

  7. As is true for any large group, including the Democrats and Republicans, the Tea Party has within it, people whom I suspect most Tea Party members wish did not belong. A few of those are racist and don't like President Obama because he is black.

    I have spoken to some Tea Party members personally, watched them speak on TV and watched them interviewed, although I have not attended a Tea Party rally or meeting.

    My take away is that most of them are not racists and their objection to President Obama is not personal or race based. It is instead that his philosophy and policies are a part of what they see as a shift away from the traditional values, and founding principles of the United States. They are anti Obama, but not because he is black, but because he is a Progressive.

    I'd like to see the race part of this to be seen for what it is, a tiny number of racists within a group of people who are anti Progressive.

    Most people I see in the Tea Party object to the more secular, less religious society they see here. They object to the decline of the importance of the two parent family. They dislike the government spending with no connection to revenue. They don't like our de-facto open borders. They think the Federal government is too large and too involved in the life of individual Americans. They do not agree with the 'redistribution' of wealth that President Obama has talked about.

    This country has been and is moving in a Progressive direction, both socially and fiscally. The last two Presidential elections have proven that and so have other elections for lower office. During this transition, many Americans stayed quiet , although they were very uncomfortable with many of the changes they saw. When the Tea Party formed, it gave voice to the concerns of these many heretofore silent Americans. Did some radicals and racists join the group? Yes they did, but the Tea Party is, for the most part, a voice against the Progressive wave in this country.

    There is a struggle going on, but it is much less a hatred of a black President than it is a push back against a move toward a more Progressive America, which has been led by one of the most Progressive Presidents that Americans have ever elected.

    Michael

  8. Oh, and I await with interest, the attacks that I am sure are coming my way, at this moment. I can feel the heat from flying fingers on the keyboards even now. So bring it on...

    Michael

  9. The letters by Jerry Fink and Sam Pizzo illustrate a point I try to make often. President Obama has zero in common wit Bin Laden and the term Osama Obama is disrespectful and inaccurate. Yet we rarely see anyone on the right say a peep about the use of the term. Many writers here make the claim that the Tea Party is racist because it doesn't support President Obama and that those in the Tea Party are racist. This is also disrespectful and inaccurate. Yet we rarely see anyone on the left say a peep about the use of the term.

    Most of us believe that those non radical members of Islam should stand up and criticize the actions of radical Islam, but most don't. Many of us should try to heed our own advice. When we don't, others are left to wonder if 'we' actually agree with the disrespectful and and inaccurate comments made by others.

    Michael

  10. I second and third Bob Jack's comment. Good letter.

    Carmine D

  11. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/...

    "The Tea Party movement is remarkable in two respects. It is one of the biggest exercises in false consciousness the world has seen -- and the biggest Astroturf operation in history. These accomplishments are closely related.

    An Astroturf campaign is a fake grassroots movement: it purports to be a spontaneous uprising of concerned citizens, but in reality it is founded and funded by elite interests. Some Astroturf campaigns have no grassroots component at all. Others catalyse and direct real mobilisations. The Tea Party belongs in the second category. It is mostly composed of passionate, well-meaning people who think they are fighting elite power, unaware that they have been organised by the very interests they believe they are confronting. We now have powerful evidence that the movement was established and has been guided with the help of money from billionaires and big business. Much of this money, as well as much of the strategy and staffing, were provided by two brothers who run what they call "the biggest company you've never heard of"."

  12. The NRA's new President, Jim Porter from Birmingham Alabama recently said "It's only a matter of time before we can own black people again". You can't get any closer to the Tea Party then the NRA. I think their membership roles could be 99% interchanged.

    He also said that what the North calls the "Civil War" is referred to as the "War of Northern Aggression" down south.

    Slavery was considered a 'God Given Right' in the antebellum South and the Union Government had no right to interfere with God's plan. One of the most important reasons for the South's fierce determination was religion: they were fighting to keep God's gift. They still hate the Northern Liberals for that transgression against their god-given existence.

    That same thought is alive today in the NRA, the Tea Party and the Confederate mind.

    The conservatives want their Slave Nation back, Bible studies in public schools and destroying a liberal Government is the first step to getting it.

    Much of the Tea Party and the NRA look at Obama as someone who escaped from the fields and is insulting them and their god by being in Government. That happens to be a clear fact.

  13. What John Becker wrote in his letter are a bunch of generalizations strung together, along with inaccuracies. Porter never said "It's only a matter of time before we can own black people again". Go search it on the internet but don't don't limit your search to Progressive websites only. Becker writes as though former slave owners are the only occupants of the South and they are all waiting for their slaves to be returned to them. If you believe that, you really need to go visit the 'Southern' states. The Tea Party / Confederate link is equally dubious. Conservatives want to bring slavery back. REALLY! "Much of the Tea Party and the NRA look at Obama as someone who escaped from the fields and is insulting them and their god by being in Government. That happens to be a clear fact." .... REALLY? ..... such nonsense...

    Michael

  14. If this letter or many of the supportive comments true, those who call themselves the tea party would have organized far before Obama took office.

    They would have organized in the 80's, when Reagan raised taxes while still ballooning the deficit... or when he gave amnesty to millions of the "illegals."

    They would have organized in the early 2000s, as the Bush administration built a new antiterror infrastructure and fought two wars while increasing the national debt by trillions.

    Sorry, but the tea party has promoted themselves on a single principle: fiscal responsibility, while they worship at the altar of frauds like Paul Ryan, who voted time and time again to increase spending and new entitlements while lowering tax revenue, hiking the deficit even further, increasing the debt by trillions.

    They fell for grifters like Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Glenn Beck and Jim DeMint... who took advantage of them.

    The tea party is a fraud. A group of Americans who sat on their behinds for decades and then suddenly fell for astroturfed propaganda. Had their whining been authentic about the deficit or debt, they would have coalesced before Obama's presidency. Instead, they rewrite history and cite Reagan as some sort of fiscal hero.

    What a joke.

  15. I'm surprised that the conspiracy theorists out there haven't decided that the tea party is really a clever ploy to ensure that democrats dominate electoral politics for the next 20 years.

    Youth unemployment is something like 25%, and we have a bunch of angry, old white men prancing around in cocked hats calling for spending cuts (rather than jobs programs) and doubling interest rates on student loans. Add in an extra dash of homophobia, and the entire program is seems purposefully designed to turn off anyone under 30.

    Fine by me. Once a young person votes for a political party twice, he is likely to identify with that party for the rest of his life. The Tea Party may be raising a stink now, but it's destroying the long-term viability of the GOP.

  16. This letter is utter hogwash. It builds a case built on misperceptions and vague generalities.

    Every single indication shows the Tea/Republican Party are the sole purveyors of all this. They OWN it. The fingers can be pointed all over the place, but the reality of all the evidence clearly indicates they HATE it when a Democratic is President. And they will savagely and relentlessly attack, don't have a reason, just attack, attack, attack, go for that agenda, truth don't matter.

    But, there is a hidden thing that is not mentioned by the Tea/Republicans. The utter disdain, hatred, resentment and outright detesting of this President is revealed to the light each and every day.

    This stems from one and only one reason.

    This President is leading while guilty of only the reason that he is black.

    And this drives those with Neanderthal proclivities and arcane prejudice absolutely BONKERS CRAZY.

    This summer, all we see is: IRS Ghazi! AP News Correspondent Ghazi! Internet spying Ghazi! Verizon Wireless phone tapping Ghazi! Aspara Ghazi! Benghazi Oh My Ghazi! It's non-stop the abject hatred of this President by the entire Tea/Republican Party. They want to tie him to anything including the war on Christmas, Easter, Hannukah, Halloween.....ANYTHING. They are in desperation mode right now.

    To prove it, what are they doing to serve the will of the people in Congress?

    I'll answer that. NOTHING. Just the silly summer of search for scandal.

    Their approval rating right now is six percent. Solely due to the Tea/Republican Party majority in the House. Let's flip that around. That means just about 94 percent of the American people find them slightly more popular than mold on kitchen baseboards.

    So, this letter writer's attempt to re-write current political history falls short. Wayyyyyyy short.

    You can scream this stuff from the rooftops, but it don't match what is actually happening.

    Where are the jobs, Speaker Boehner? Ever since he took the gavel as Speaker of the House, that question has not only not been answered, but it's outright ignored. And it is not only pathetic, but downright criminal the way they are acting, putting politics before country.

    Scorched earth, people. I will NEVER EVER vote for a Tea/Republican. Why anyone would vote them in and expect a different result is beyond me. I not only want them gone from the political landscape, I want them DESTROYED as a political party. They have failed the American people. And they are continuing to fail them.

  17. Jerry Fink attacking others for "VITRIOL"!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    PLEASE!

  18. There is a reason why people sat on their hands in the past and only now has the Tea Party risen. The reason is that in the past, the problems we see today were there, but overall, most people in America were doing fine and had faith in the future. Whenever that changed, for whatever reason, and no matter what party was in charge at that time, a movement like the Tea Party was bound to show up.

    2007 is where I think people really started to notice that their future wasn't assured and that their position currently was worsening everyday. If Bush could have served another term and the economy stayed bad, he would have been hit by a massive public backlash. It might not have gone by the same name but it would have been there. Since Obama was the incoming President and the media anointed him as the 'savior' and he himself set expectations so high, he was bound to disappoint, so he got the backlash and part of that backlash was and is the Tea Party.

    Those who claim that the backlash is because he is black are just wrong. Many people are frustrated, worried and disappointed, not because our President is black, but because they don't agree with some of the policies and the philosophy of this President. You can place the blame for what's happened anywhere you like, but when things are not going well for this many Americans and the future looks less bright than before, there is going to be a backlash and there are going to be groups like the Tea Party.

    Michael

  19. Malcolm asked, "If Obama had been a Republican, would I have put up with all this?"

    Future answered, "Absolutely not!"

    That's a lie. Many of you right wing whiners have put up with far worse and now lionize and worship people like G. Gordon Liddy and Oliver North. How long did Fox carry Dick Morris, the prostitute leaker, before people realized he was a complete arse?

    I have little doubt some of these attacks on Obama are due to race. The Southern Poverty Center released reports that racist groups increased in membership since Obama was elected. I also have little doubt that those on the right have fearmongered to the point they don't know up from down. The sky is falling, buy survivor food! The sky is falling, buy victory garden survivor seeds! The sky is falling, buy gold! The sky is falling, stock pile guns and ammo! The sky is falling, they are coming for your bible!

    "Bill Kristol has a great column" (in which) he says, 'Every great cause begins as a movement' -- this is an Eric Hoffer quote that he applies to the GOP -- 'Every great cause begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.'

    "But that (conservatism) turned into a business. We saw a couple of Republican consultants get paid tens of millions of dollars; and then it becomes a racket, and that's where you have a lot of people running around saying harsh things that sell books, and push ratings, and lose elections" And that's where we are: conservatism is a racket for a lot of people to get very, very rich." -- Joe Scarborough

    We would be in far better shape if the parties worked as they were intended, together through compromise. Instead we got obstructionists and a bunch of voters from planet Bizarro.

  20. Sorry, that just doesn't follow the facts.

    There's this thing about consistency that Mike just ignores altogether. The GOP spent three decades being fiscally irresponsible. Reagan plunged the United States into debt, even during the same period he was promoting our "substantial economic growth."

    Bush the first and the second presided over a massive increases in the deficit and debt. The House GOP, under Bush leadership, passed a TRILLION DOLLAR unfunded entitlement in 2004. They just added it directly onto the national debt.

    Paul Ryan voted for that unfunded entitlement. He also voted for the Bush tax cuts, and Bush budgets, which had unprecedented levels of deficits in 2003.

    And now the tea party worships at his feet.

    This has nothing to do with fiscal responsibility, and those who try to sell it as such are being dishonest. These "soldiers for fiscal responsibility" did NOTHING for three decades. In fact, they reelected these representatives and even tried to promote one of them to Vice President!

    That's as fraudulent as the tea party itself.

  21. I don't argue that Republicans have been fiscally responsible. To do so would be idiotic. But neither will I sign onto the conclusion that the lack of fiscal responsibility was all on Republicans or that Democrats are fiscally responsible. Kevin acts as though Republican Presidents were dictators, there was no opposition party and the House and Senate didn't exist or the President could just ignore them. None of that was or is true.

    Our system functions by our two main parties spending money to do things (supposedly) for the benefit of the American people. That's how they get elected and stay in power. Neither party is fiscally responsible and the reason is that 'not being fiscally responsible wins elections' and doing otherwise, because it is painful to Americans, loses elections.

    The way that changes is when our fiscal situation gets so bad, it is impossible to carry on the charade or hopefully, before that happens, Americans wake up and demand real fiscal responsibility. Believing that either party is going to make those hard and unpopular decisions on their own is pure fantasy.

    Michael

  22. "Kevin acts as though Republican Presidents were dictators, there was no opposition party and the House and Senate didn't exist or the President could just ignore them. None of that was or is true."

    Not ignoring it. I didn't mention it because according to the common refrain from the tea party itself, control doesn't matter. It's irrelevant who controls the White House or Congress, or whether they are cooperating or in opposition.

    The tea party posits that they support fiscal responsibility, regardless of party affiliation. That commentary has been made for several years now in defense of the tea party. They say that they would have the same opinion regardless of whether it were a Democrat or a republican in control.

    The facts don't follow that. There's zero consistency, which wipes out your argument, Mike. At least three decades of irresponsible spending and rising debt and deficit, by both parties, and the tea party didn't make a peep until Obama was elected.

    Were your argument true, the tea party would be in uproar over the Senate republicans refusing to go to committee. After all, the tea party has screeched and whined that the Senate refused to pass a budget. So the Senate passes a budget and tea party heroes Rubio/Lee/Cruz have blocked the appropriate budget conference to get it authorized. And the tea party... cheers?

    There's zero ideological consistency among those who claim the tea party flag. They abide decades worth of deficit and debt spending and suddenly panic when Obama took office.

    This is all about hating President Obama and using every opportunity to attack him, no matter the reality.

    That's why the tea party is a fraud.

  23. Bradley,

    I knew I could count on you. Your logic is so ..... convenient. It is quite OK with you to draw the conclusion that all Tea Party Republicans are racists because there are racists within the Tea Party Republican group. But should anyone draw the conclusion President Obama might agree with some of Reverend Wright's views as espoused in his many sermons, because he attended services at Wright's church (many, many times Bradley, not just a few), that is completely out of bounds.

    Let me explain a couple of things Bradley:

    One, I thought Mrs. Obama's response to the heckler that interrupted her was A'OK. That's because I don't approve of hecklers EVER, whether they are interrupting Mrs. Obama or Mitt Romney as two examples. Can you say the same?

    Two, I don't know if President Obama agrees with any of Reverend Wright's views or not. Neither do you or anyone else, other than President Obama. We can guess, but that's all we can do. Likewise, I do not know if each member of the Tea Party Republicans is a racist or not, even though a few have spoken as though they are racists. Only each member of the Tea Party Republicans knows if he or she is a racist. You cannot know and neither can I.

    Here is one thing I do know. If one is open to the suggestion that all Tea Partiers / Republicans are racist because a few members are, he or she should also be open to the suggestion that President Obama might agree with some of Reverend Wright's views since he did attend services there many times. If one is open to one view but not the other, one is a hypocrite, in my opinion.

    Personally, I think is a pretty far leap to draw the conclusion that President Obama agrees with all of Reverend Wright's views because he attended his church or that all Tea Party / Republicans are racist because some members are. That's just me. What's your call?

    Michael

  24. Kevin,

    Many of these people did not 'suddenly' panic when President Obama took office. I am quite sure many of them started to panic, as I did, during the 2nd term of former President Bush. Things were staring to go bad and you had to be blind not to see it. Some people did see it. I'm sure you don't believe it but I had a very difficult and unhappy decision in voting for McCain because I saw him as not taking our economic problems seriously enough and not having any good solutions. I saw Obama as very similar, only much more Progressive fiscally and I also did worry that he had not even been in Congress very long.

    When both chambers of Congress went Democrat and Progressive and the country elected a Progressive President, yes, people who are not Progressives did start to panic. DUH! Progressives didn't feel too comfortable when Bush won re-election for a 2nd term over Kerry either.

    Many people felt that the ACA should NOT be President Obama's first priority, but it was, just cementing the fear in some people's minds that we were going to get more spending, just like under Bush and the Republicans with not enough attention to the economy, the deficits and the debt. What they saw was a desired Progressive agenda long sought by Nancy Pelosi and others that was expensive and that focused on the wrong priorities.

    Michael

  25. Are you reading what you're writing, Mike?

    "Many of these people did not 'suddenly' panic when President Obama took office."

    "When both chambers of Congress went Democrat and Progressive and the country elected a Progressive President, yes, people who are not Progressives did start to panic. DUH!"

    Yeah, you're making no sense at all, Mike. They didn't start to panic when Obama took office, but they started to panic when Obama took office. That's illogical, of course.

    Again, you can't address the crass lack of consistency. Where was the tea party when the GOP had total control of government and yet were deficit spending out of their ears?

    These "tea party patriots" did not say anything. They did not protest. They reelected the members who were irresponsible.

    Your excuses do not match the actions of those who claim the tea party mantle.

    Nor have you addressed why chronic deficit spenders like Paul Ryan are lionized by the tea party. It is illogical because the movement is a fraud, so it's fun to watch you try.

    But you've failed thus far.

    Perhaps reflect on your own vote to place Paul Ryan in the Vice President's office, in light of your history of deficit/debt hysteria?

  26. Kevin,

    I already said, but you chose to ignore, that the economy was doing quite well during most of the crazy spending, the deficits and the building of the debt so nobody complained much, not Republicans and not Democrats. If the economy would have been like it is now, people would have been unhappy and they would not have remained quiet.

    As for Ryan, his budget fix was just about as inadequate as the ones President Obama has proposed. The lesser of two bad proposals as I saw it. If you think I loved Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, you'd be wrong. Do I like President Obama and Joe Biden? No. Do I like what Congress is doing? No.

    The Republicans have been consistently bad for quite some time, as have the Democrats.

    Michael

  27. Hombre,

    That's a good letter. There are hypocrites galore among our letter writers, on both sides. Many policies of former President Bush that were criticized by the left and candidate Obama when Bush sat in the Oval Office, were then kept and expanded once Obama became President. If Obama is now criticized for the same policies, those doing the criticizing, many of whom are also hypocrites, are now called racists for criticizing Obama. It's all pretty messed up.

    Michael

  28. "I already said, but you chose to ignore, that the economy was doing quite well during most of the crazy spending, the deficits and the building of the debt so nobody complained much, not Republicans and not Democrats. If the economy would have been like it is now, people would have been unhappy and they would not have remained quiet."

    Except the tea party themselves have claimed this is not the case. Again, their mantra is fiscal responsibility. The state of the economy overall is irrelevant, as fiscal irresponsibility can take place in good times and bad. Were there a sliver of ideological consistency in the tea party, they would have been active long before Barack Obama took the oath of office.

    Instead, they chose (and were prodded by astroturfing) to panic under this particular President.

    Nor was this particular economic event unprecedented. One can look at several recessions or the Wall Street panic in 1987. Was there a tea party type response? Nope.

    You continue to outline excuses for the tea party that do not rationalize the formation or fervor against this particular President. You've failed to explain how they are not a fraud, nor whether they are a true grassroots or, as I and others have argued, gullible and astroturfed.

    Is it better that you voted for a fraud knowing he was a fraud, vs. voting for someone you disagreed with but understood his position? I'm not sold on that one, Mike.

    From your tepid and unpersuasive response, you aren't either.

  29. Also still waiting for a response regarding the tea party's support of Lee/Rubio/Cruz filibustering of the conference committee on the budget.

    You've written many, many comments and letters criticizing Senate Democrats for not passing a budget, yet you have no criticism for the Senate's tea party caucus playing politics and stalling/blocking the budget process?

    Very interesting indeed.

  30. Bradley,

    I do not approve of the use of Osama Obama and think is is disrespectful to President Obama. I can't stop those who use the term as they do have free speech. I felt the same when Harry Reid called former President Bush a liar and a loser, but he too is allowed his free speech. The problem I have, again, is that depending on political affiliation, some people believe some disrespectful name calling is OK and others are not. That's being a hypocrite.

    Michael

  31. Kevin,

    I have said many times that I disagree with 'all' of the House and Senate rules that are used to prevent debate and votes in committees and the floor, so of course I am not in favor when Lee/Rubio/Cruz do it or when Harry Reid and the Democrats use the rules to their advantage.

    Look, if I were the Democrats or Republicans, I would be tempted to use these tactics because they are legal, are effective and the other side uses them or will use them when they are in the minority. These rules and their use and abuse benefit the 'parties' and their priorities, not ours. We, as citizens need to demand that both parties 'disarm' together. I am more than willing to 'let elections matter'. President Obama and the Democrats won and I think they should be allowed to run hog wild, even though I disagree with much of what they would do. I think the same for Republicans, when they win. Unfortunately, like most everything else anymore, Americans seem to feel they want one set of rules for 'their' side and another for the 'other' side. That approach gets us nowhere good.

    Michael

  32. Bradley,

    I did say I didn't agree with name calling... like 'conservative scallywags' and the like, including 'Osama Obama'. I was going to ask what you expect of me, but then I realized I already knew. You wanted me to parrot you. That would be tough to do since sometimes you talk issues and sometimes you call names, berate and attack. That's not who am I. I just quietly and without rancor, state what I believe and respectfully, read and respond to the views of others. You should try it. You might like it.

    Have a nice day...

    Michael

  33. Vidi,

    If you took every wacky statement made by a member of the Republican or Democrat party and made a list, it would look much like the list you just provided.

    Would you then draw the conclusion that every member of the Democrat or Republican party who never uttered a word of that nonsense agreed with all the nutty comments and supported everything that was said?

    I certainly hope your answer would be NO!

    This kind of stuff adds zero to any debate we might be able to have.

    Michael

  34. Bradley,

    Calling people names and ranting hardly qualifies as 'doing something'. Other than write to our representatives, voting and expressing our opinions to others, there is very little any of us can do.

    Because I have voted for Republicans, you and others hold me responsible for all the ills of our country. How ridiculous that is. That stems from the fact that you and most other letter writers to the Sun believe that either the Democrats or the Republicans are righteous and their opposites are evil. How utterly naive.

    As I have repeatedly written, if you believe in Progressive philosophy, you should support and vote for Democrats, for they are closer to your belief system. If you are Conservative, you should not vote Democrat, because in all likelihood, the direction they will take is not a direction you will agree with. Regardless of how one votes, our legislative branch will remain corrupted by powerful interests with money and lobbyists and will not be doing the will of those that elected them.

    I never have a problem with people who support Democrats or Republicans. I simply would like to see more Americans realize that until we address the corruption in our Legislative branch, our country will continue in decline. I can live in a Progressive America, a Conservative America or something in between, but none of us will be able to live in the America we have known if we allow the corruption in our Legislative branch to continue.

    Michael

  35. Vidi,

    Position: We need public financing of campaigns and term limits.

    Fact: Average length of service for Senators currently - 12.8 years with many serving much longer. same situation with House members. From the 19th century to the 21st century time of service in Congress has substantially increased, as has the power, influence, salary and benefits of being a member of Congress.

    Fact: In the 2012 Congressional elections, 546 million dollars were raised by the two parties. Divide that by 535 members (and not all members are up for re-election at the same time) and it amounts to over 1 million dollars per seat. Members must constantly fund raise, taking time away from their 'real' job and making them vulnerable to the desires of people and groups that have the money they need.

    Fact: Congressional committee assignments are in part awarded on a members ability to fund raise.

    Fact: Jim McDermott, a U.S. Rep. from Washington State, was expected to hand over $250,000 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee this cycle. He has to raise that money by asking for donations. I think that it is likely those contributing are expecting something in return.

    I could go on, but why? There are plenty of facts that point to why what I advocate is critical to having our legislative branch operate as the Founders intended it to, rather than the way it does.

    Michael

  36. Bradley,

    Vidi asked if I could support my positions with facts so I accommodated that request. I'm sorry if you don't like facts. Oh yeah, that's right, you don't like my opinions, and it doesn't matter whether they are supported by facts or not.

    Michael

  37. Victor_Eismine (4:53 a.m.) comments: "Since Obama has continued most of Bush's policies -- free phones, drone strikes, Patriot Act and wiretapping/data gathering, tax cuts we can't afford, amnesty for those here illegally, (I could go on but there's a space limit) -- I haven't really noticed much of a change."

    One MAJOR change, Victor. NOW the Republicant's are OPPOSED to all of it! They argue that it's all now UNFORGIVEABLE!

  38. Per Future (3:13 a.m.): "Mclcome asked If Obama had been a Republican, would I have put up with all this?"

    Absolutely not"

    Did you actually fight these positions so hard when Republican'ts first introduced them????

  39. When I was first transferred to Huntsville Alabama in 1970, I was APPALLED by the way some people spoke about others!

    Today, when I talk privately to conservatives about Obama I hear just the same language in just the same tones of voice. What's changed? NOW, it is no longer considered proper to use it PUBLICLY. Indeed, NOW it is de rigueur to deny the existence of the feelings that generated those comments 40+ years ago. In point of fact, however, NOTHING HAS CHANGED! Racism? Certainly, but with a large dose of "Febreze" sprayed on it. The concealed tea-party consensus? Obama just isn't "one of us." But then, I'm most happy not to be "one of them"!

  40. Memory like a steel sieve! THAT transfer was 1969, to
    Dallas, Texas! Huntsville was 1971. Makes no difference to the balance of my comment, however.

  41. Spending: A bipartisan love story.

  42. Bradley,

    The Executive branch is the Presidency. The Legislative branch is Congress. I don't think I wrote about the Executive branch.

    As for the criticism of you and others that I am repetitious (which is true), that would only mean something if you complained about the other letter writers who are also repetitious (live better, work union immediately comes to mind as well as others)....which is everyone. The problem you and others have with me is not really the repetition. It is instead that I disagree with you.

    And finally, I am aware that we don't live in 1789 and the world is very different now. I agree with some of what Progressives believe in. However, our institutions, such as our Legislative branch have strayed from what was intended as per their operation and the election process in ways that are damaging. In this case, we would all be better off if some of the changes we have all seen in the campaign process and in the operation of Congress were reversed.

    Michael

  43. Bradley,

    I am sorry you feel the way you do. Many people who are not what you would consider Progressives, including me, are none of things you think we are, and don't hold the terrible views you think we hold. I hope you come to know that one day. I never said teamster was not a good person, only that his writing was repetitive. You made the other assumptions.

    As many do, you generalize to a large degree, for reasons I always fail to understand. Conservatives are not all evil and Progressives are not all good. People are individuals and when we generalize about groups of them, we do a disservice to us all.

    Michael

  44. Bradley,

    Re Freeman stated what I believe is a good analysis of your thought process in his 2:18 AM post. You should consider what he said.

    If someone disagrees with the Progressive philosophy or a Progressive concept, should it mean that they believe anyone who is a Progressive or supports a Progressive philosophy has no redeeming value? No, it shouldn't. I think you would agree. Turn that around and make it Conservative. What's the difference except that you agree with one and disagree with the other?

    It's comforting in some ways to live in a black and white, right and wrong world but alot is missed when you do.

    Michael

  45. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  46. Attack less, debate more. That's what we need. Re Freeman hit the nail on the head.

    When I point out and prove that a head guy at the NRA did not say that 'we will be able to have slaves again soon', as one letter writer claimed, I get no response. When I ask another letter writer who criticized the current effort on immigration reform if he favored open borders and if not, what he would do instead to control illegal immigration, I get silence.

    Engage your brains and debate. It's tougher to do and takes more effort than attacking, but is soooo much more valuable to everyone.

    Michael

  47. If you listen to many in the Tea Party, you come away with the impression that the movement is not about race at all. It isn't even just about Progressives or Democrats. The Tea Party is unhappy with mainstream Republicans as well. That's because they feel that many mainstream Republicans are RINO's. The Tea Party is certainly Conservative, especially socially and that is where I disagree most with them. I also do not believe their obstructionist strategy is a wise one.

    To label them racist, bigots and closely associated with the "Aryan Nation", "The Klu Klux Klan", "The John Birch Society", and "The American Nazi Party" just flies in the face of the facts.

    What they are is a group of Americans, generally very Conservative, both Socially and Fiscally, who find faith important and feel abandoned by the mainstream Republican party and who are opposed to much of the agenda of Progressives. President Obama, at the moment is the leader of the Progressives, so he is a focus of the Tea Party.

    All this nonsense about the racism would easily be disproven if Obama was white but followed the same philosophy and agenda. The Tea Party would still be all over him. Have some racists and bigots found there way into the Tea Party? Yes. Are they what the Tea Party is about? No.

    The Progressive letter writers will all disagree but if you listen closely and with an open mind to the Tea Party members speak, what comes across is not Racism; it is dissatisfaction with the Progressive turn the country has taken. Personally, I don't think it likely that the Progressive trend will be reversed anytime soon, if ever, but I have no issue with those that would like to see it reversed...at least in some areas.

    Michael

  48. I will just calmly (although it is difficult) ask you to read Bradley's comments and then after listening to and watching what most members of the Tea Party say and do; see if you draw the same conclusions Bradley does.

    If you do, I don't really know what else to say to you. To paint thousands and thousands of individuals as racists and bigots (whom you have never met personally).... and most importantly....use as the basis for doing that...the fact that these people disagree with the philosophy and many of the actions of the President of the United States (who happens to be a black man) is something I find abhorrent.

    Michael

  49. Malcolm, have you noticed that many of O's campaign promises are answered with "we had no idea it was so complex." We haven't got around to that yet. We changed our minds. We'd rather promote illegal invasion than care for American seniors and long-term unemployed Americans.

  50. FIRST explain why the media and much of the public criticized Mr. Bush so severely.....the feedback to O. is NOTHING in comparison.

  51. 'These 'people' are nuts'. That's where I have a problem.

    Disagreeing with and even not liking an individual such as Sarah Palin or Ted Nugent is completely understandable and can be defended. They are on record with what they have said and what they believe.

    Just like with the Republicans or Democrats, most of the people belonging to either party are not on record saying anything. Is it OK that I take a couple of people from either party that are on record saying pretty crazy stuff and just go ahead and assume that everyone else not on record at all, is just like these 'nuts' because they belong to the same party as the couple of 'nuts' do? Somehow I don't think you'd agree that such a generalization is right or fair.

    We cannot know what about Sarah Palin or Ted Nugent each person in the Tea Party agrees with or even if they agree at all. Nonetheless, each is considered to be totally heartless, completely evil, racists and bigots because they identify with the Tea Party. Unbelievable!

    Americans are free to like or dislike the Tea Party or President Obama. But these generalizations about both, from both sides are really a terrible stain on our society.

    Michael

  52. Jeff,

    Do you really believe that former President George W. Bush 'giggled' as American soldiers, and Iraqi and Afghanistan civilians died? If so, do you have any proof that he did, or is it just convenient to say he did, because you hate the man?

    Michael

  53. Vidi,

    Your letter doesn't upset me. None of the letters upset me. They frustrate and disappoint me. There are a few things in the list that actually make some sense, such as people liking Medicare but being against government run insurance. However, most of the list is inaccurate and over the top.

    When people on either side exaggerate to try to make a point, it just makes it next to impossible to come together over anything.

    Don't you understand that Democrat / Progressives are never going to totally triumph in this country? Neither are Republican / Conservatives. If we don't find a way to common ground, we will all destroy everything that is great about America.

    I hope that answers your question.

    Michael

  54. This country was built and prospered through compromise between opposing ideas and opposing groups. Very little of that is happening anymore. That is because too many of us are using Bradley's rationale which is: If you hold a view other than mine, you are the 'enemy'. You never compromise with the 'enemy'; you fight the 'enemy'.

    That is a 'war' mentality, and does not belong outside of a 'war'. Too many Progressives believe Conservatives are the 'enemy'. Too many Conservatives believe Progressives are the 'enemy'.

    Progressives have many ideas I favor and so do Conservatives and even the Tea Party. Each also has ideas I reject. I wrote a letter recently, praising several things President Obama has done and saying he is smart and has shown guts. It probably will not be published by the Sun, but it illustrates that although I disagree with what I believe to be President Obama's philosophy, I do not find the man to be 'evil', an 'enemy' with no redeeming value. I'm not at 'war' with the man; I simply have some disagreements with him. I don't call our President Osama Obama nor do I call people in the Tea Party, Tea Baggers. I don't accuse the President of being a closet Muslin, nor do I generalize that all Tea Party members are racists and bigots.

    When you 'start' with labeling your opposition in the above fashion, you leave no place for compromise; you create and foster a 'war' mentality and you damage the country you say you love.

    Michael

  55. Jeff,

    Those comments were made at a Coorespondent's Dinner, where the President is expected to make jokes and laugh. The audience laughed because they understood the self depreciating humor.

    You need to stop using backward logic, where you draw a conclusion and then twist whatever you can find to fit that conclusion.

    Go back and view other Presidential speeches at Coorespondent's dinners and you will find plenty of jokes that could easily be twisted to make a President look like he doesn't care about this or that.

    Some times, you guys are really ridiculous.

    Michael

  56. The Tea Party chose their name to call attention to the effects of the increasing economic burden placed on American businesses and taxpayers by our federal government.

    Since there is no logical, moral, or economic reason for the belief that the increasing expropriation of private wealth, it's waste, re-distribution, and ultimate destruction is somehow going to create a better, more prosperous and equitable society--the essence of Progressive ideology--they have no choice but to resort to the Progressive propaganda: The moralist angle. The race-baiting. The evil Republicans, the greedy corporatists, and the rest who want dirty air and water, and Grandma turned out into the street.

    It's sad but effective. It's all they got.

  57. Bradley and Michael are both different on how they see and say things in the LVS letter to the editor,with their comments.Each have a lot of good in them and both love their country equally.I enjoy reading what each has to say,but don't always agree on what they share with us on a daily basis. We all need to cut some slack and value what each has to say and not take it personally.