Monday, January 22, 2007

Thank You

I realize this is quite late, however I would like to thank all those individuals which cast their ballot vote for me during the last election cycle. It gives me hope to know that "others" are aware that the current political system is broken an until you change the faces in politics you'll never change the face of politics.
Our electorate cast most of their votes for Shane Schoeller, during the election cycle Shane became a friend and has remained in contact with me everytime I have sent him an e-mail concerning some whacked out idea being floated in Jeff City. I firmly believe that Shane will represent the interest of this area and when needed to he will oppose the party apparatus should it be contrary to his beliefs.
I look forward to keeping Shane informed of how this area believes that Jeff City may be encroaching on our creator given rights. Shane just like us will stand up for our limited freedoms and individual responsibility that we espouse so dearly.

Give him an opportunity to show what he is made of, we could be pleasantly surprized.

Sunday, December 10, 2006


For years the Republican Party and the followers of such have
espoused disdain for the United Nations. It was George the elder which
proclaimed a "New World Order" would come into being and at the helm
would be an organization known as the United Nations.
Clinton follow suit as invasions and military actions under the guise of the United
Nations were used to stop "ethnic cleansing" and "warlords" from government over throws.
Bush the younger not having found massive catches of WMD's now uses UN resolutions for our invasion of Iraq and what is known as the "War on Terror".
Sorry people Art. IV Sec. IV of the constitution says it quite simply, The
federal government is charged with the defense of our nations borders and allowing groups of individuals and individuals alike to be given the key to the country is quite irresponsible. Of the 19 hijackers(if you believe the "official" government story)how many were still over here after their VISA's expired??

By Tom DeWeese
November 24, 2006

My first reaction was “this is a joke.” However upon a second and then a
third reading of the letter in my hand it became clear the invitation
was legitimate. “It is with great pleasure that I extend an invitation for you to speak at the Cambridge Union (the debating society of Cambridge University, England) this Michaelmas term.” It was signed by Luke Pearce, President of the Union.

Founded in 1815, the Cambridge Union is a near 200 year-old debating society that stands as a “vibrant center of debate and free speech in British intellectual
life.” It has played host to Anthony Eden, Lloyd George and Winston Churchill. Economist John Maynard Keynes was one of the Societies’ presidents. An incredible list of political, cultural and religious leaders have spoken there, including Ronald Reagan, Professor Stephen Hawking, the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu.

Now the invitation came to me to debate the issue of the United Nations. Said the letter of invitation, “As a political activist for over two decades and now the president of the American Policy Center, you would bring experience and insight to this debate. Cambridge students would be honored to listen to you speak in proposition of the motion,” The motion we were to debate was, “This House believes the United Nations is a dead loss.”I couldn’t agree more and after a few moments of consideration of what I was about to do, accepted the invitation.

Rules of the debate process call for six participants, three arguing for the
proposition, three in opposition. I was actually on the side of the proponents, arguing a kind of double negative = yes, I am opposed to the UN.

Each participant is to speak for approximately ten minutes, giving an opening statement. Four participants present their opening statements, and then the floor is opened to a series of two-minute speeches from the audience. Finally, the last two
participants, one from each side, give a ten-minute summation. During the speeches, any participant or member of the audience may interrupt a speaker with “Point of Information” and they may then make a point or ask a question of the speaker. However, it is entirely up to the speaker whether to allow the interruption. He can simply say no to the Point of Information.

Just prior to my leaving for the UK, I learned who the other participants were to be. On my side, speaking against the UN was Ted Knight, a UK labor leader (I came to learn he was a major Leftist leader known as “Red Ted”; and SimonTisdall ,
Assistant Editor of The Guardian and a foreign affairs columnist. Speaking for the opposition and in support of the UN were Lord DavidHannay, Former UK Ambassador to the UN and a member of the House of Lords; Salil Shetty, Director of the UN’s Millennium Campaign; and Simon Hughes, President of the UK’s Liberal Democrats and a Member of Parliament.

night of the debate began with the participants meeting over a formal
dinner. I actually found “Red Ted” very engaging. This was also his
first appearance before the Society. I was informed that my
presentation was to be first. Said Red Ted, “Then I shall see how you
do!” During the dinner I also found myself sitting next to Mr.Shetty. We had a brief moment to talk before heading into the debating chamber.

marched into the historic debating chamber behind the secretary of the
Cambridge Union Society, who was wearing a traditional top hat. There
was thunderous applause from the four hundred students and Union
members who filled the impressive leather seats or jammed the balcony
above us. Union President Luke Pearce quickly got down to business by
introducing me, coming “all the way from theUnited States.

walked up to the historic front table where two wooden boxes were
placed (one for each side). Speakers stand behind or beside them to
make their 10 minute opening remarks. As I worked through my
presentation, there were actually gasps from the audience. Apparently
few had heard such hard hitting attacks on the UN (a full copy of my
opening remarks can be found elsewhere in this report). Suddenly shouts
of “point of information” could be heard from several locations in the
audience. I denied them. I continued with my assault. Finally, LordHannay
shouted, “surely the gentlemen will yield?.” I briefly relented and he
attacked my assertion that the UN meddled in individual sovereign
affairs of nations. I held my ground, finished my remarks, accepted a
couple of questions and then sat down. I had made it through.

that point on, the debate became an all out attack on the United
States. I had expected it, being the “token Yank,” and considering my
remarks had set a strong tone. What became obvious, however, was that
the debatewasn ’t three to three, rather it was five to one. Ted Knight
gave an impassioned address, but I still have no idea what his
opposition to the UN was, except hedidn’t like how it was run. Simon Tisdall, the final speaker for “our side” openly admitted he didn’t oppose the UN, he just didn’t like the United States running it. Lord Hannay
seemed bored with the whole proceeding, having to deal with the
peasants. Simon Hughes played to the anti-US flavor of the crowd, as he
took twenty five minutes to rebut what I took ten minutes to say.
Reform was their only answer. None addressed my position on property
rights. LordHannay
actually denied the UN had any interest in global governance. I took
hit after hit as the audience attacked the Bush Administration and !
the Iraq war.

the debate ended, each member of the audience was instructed to pass
through one of three doors. One was marked Noes for those who disagreed
with me and the house proposition. One marked Yeas, for those whodidn
’t think the UN was a dead loss. And the center door was for those who
abstained from any opinion at all. Speakers and audience retired to the
Union bar to await the results. Itwasn ’t good: 361 noes, 33 ayes and
15 abstentions. I was soundly defeated, but not bad, I thought,
considering it had been five against one.

However, something
much more important was about to happen. I was the only speaker who
stayed after the tally was announced. About 200 students stayed as
well. Over the next two hours I fielded sincere questions about my
stand on property rights. They earnestly asked me, “you really don’t
believe in redistribution of the wealth?” “No,” I said, “It’s theft.”
As I explained how it takes ownership of property to create wealth, and
that’s how we have done it in America to make us the richest nation or
earth, several openly responded that my positions were “an interesting
concept,” and they wanted to know where they could learn more.

came to Cambridge to debate what I consider to be the deadliest force
on earth the UN. Perhaps I left a small spark of an idea which will
burst forth into a light to help show the way to freedom for some of
the brightest students I have ever met.

October 26, 2006

House believes that the United Nations is a dead loss” It is reasonable
that honest, compassionate people seek a means for governments to come
together to discuss and air their differences. It is also reasonable
that honest, compassionate people should desire some way to voluntarily
pool resources to provide charitable aid to those who are starving or
are victims of natural disaster.

Indeed this is the image of the
United Nations that has been sold to the world since its inception. It
is not, however, the reality. The world is in chaos and, quite frankly,
it’s the UN’s fault. It gives validity to zealots and petty bigots. It
helps to keep tyrannical dictators in power. It gives a voice to
international terrorists.

Delay. Negotiate. Recommend. Study.
Reconsider. Do nothing. This is the game the UN has played in nearly
every international crisis. It is the reason North Korea remains a
threat after 50 years.

It is the reason Zimbabwe’s murderous
Robert Mugabe is able to steal his election and then steal the land of
white property owners, drive the nation intoeconomic ruin and
starvation without an international protest, boycott, or sanction.
Instead, Mugabe is given a voice in the UN’s Sustainable Development
conference in South Africa.

It is the reason why the Chinese
government is able to ignore UN rules not to its liking -- while
growing as an international military and economic threat. And it is the
reason why a terrorist nation like Syria can be given a seat on the
UN’s Human Rights Council.

The United Nations, internally, is a
mess. It now finds itself buried under scandals. It has Oil-for-Food
scandals. Smuggling scandals. And theft scandals. Peace keeping
missions actually bring fear to the local citizens they are supposed to
protect. Rob, rape and pillage seem to be the UN’smodus operandi.

can we be surprised by such revelations? Who has the power to oversee
and control its actions? The people don’t vote on UN actions. The media
has little access behind the scenes. Who audits the accounting books?

course, even its supporters will readily agree that such problems
exist. They are quick to jump in and call for “reform.” However, when
talking reform, one must be very careful of what the word may means.

reports on reform don’t indicate a simple desire to plug holes in UN
spending -- or to clear up scandals. Quite the contrary. According toKofi Annan
, Maurice Strong and many others, reform means global governance. Since
its inception, the UN has advocated the desire to eradicate sovereign
nations -- while imposing what it calls “world-mindedness.”

1949 UNESCO document said, “…nationalism (is) the major obstacle to the
development of world-mindedness.” In the 1990’s, Maurice Strong said,
“it is not feasible for sovereignty to be exercised unilaterally by
individual nation/states, however powerful.”

There in lies the
true goal of the United Nations. And that belies its public image of
simply a place where nations may come to air their differences and act
responsibly. Instead, the UN is openly working to gain power for itself
in order to become independent and supreme over its member nations.

To do that it needs the power to tax. On September 19th
plans were approved to begin the creation of a global tax, mostly
through airline tickets to help pay for the treatment of aids. They of
course euphemistically call it a contribution.

There are several
other tax schemes on the UN wish list, including a carbon tax on Co2
emissions, a currency tax on transactions of foreign currency
exchanges, and taxes on the Internet, to name a few. If the UN gains
the power to tax and the enforcement power necessary to collect them,
then the UN will become an unstoppable force in the world. A monster
free of its chains.

And, of course, the UN wants its own
military. It already has its own court. These three things, the ability
to collect taxes to provide near unlimited funds from independent
sources; the ability to enforce its will with a military force; and a
court system to impose its own brand of justice, are all that is
required to create a government.

Imagine a world run by the
justice of China, with the economics of Cuba and the military might of
the United States. Such is the world of the future under United Nations
global governance. Public relations propaganda aside, clearly, the
United Nations wants to be much more than a place where nations can
come together to air their differences under a voluntary membership

The truth is, today, fifty years after the
inception of the United Nations, the international community is a
dangerous place. Today the world has more wars, more poverty and more
suffering that anytime in human history.

Obviously, the United
Nations is irrelevant as a body to deliver world peace. Just as
obviously, the UN is more interested in meddling in the sovereign
affairs of nations, seeking to impose its own agenda over development,
production and what it calls social equity in a drive to set itself up
for global governance.

Using images of dire environmental
emergencies or life-threatening diseases or starving children, the UN
promotes an agenda which really seeks to redistribute the world’s
wealth. Its only answer is government control - and confiscation of
individual wealth and property. Nowhere is there mentioned in a single
UN document that I have read an advocacy for the right to own private

In fact, quite the opposite is the case as nearly
every UN document, report, working paper, program, treaty, protocol,
declaration and resolution is dedicated to the confiscation,
redistribution, regulation and tax of someone’s property.

And it
is a fact that the inability to own private property creates poverty.
It is also a fact that confiscation of private property never helps to
eradicate poverty. It is bad economic policy. Yet that is the UN’s only
solution to the massive suffering throughout the world. Take it from
one source to give to another. And that, I contend, is the very root of
the suffering not the solution.

The UN was wrong from its very
beginning and wrong now because it has always sought to interfere with
national sovereignty rather than to provide a unique forum to help keep
the peace. That is why the UN is a dead loss. It should be tossed on
the trash heap of history so that we may start over and create an
honest enterprise that seeks to help nations, not eradicate them.

United Nations is not “dysfunctional” as some “reformists” have
claimed. It is a criminal enterprise in which no moral nation should
ever participate, let alone perpetuate.

© 2006 Tom DeWeese - All Rights Reserved

Tom DeWeese is president of the American Policy Center and Editor of The DeWeese Report , 70 Main Street, Suite 23, Warrenton Virginia.
(540) 342-8911E-Mail:

Friday, November 10, 2006

Election Day v. Veterans Day: A tale of two oaths

“War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks nothing worth a war, is worse. A man who has nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance at being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.” —John Stuart Mill


It is no small irony that Election Day and Veterans Day fall in the same week.

Veterans and elected officials all have one thing in common: Upon entering service, both took an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic,” and to “bear true faith and allegiance to the same.”

On 1 June 1789, the first law enacted by Congress was statute 1, chapter 1: an act to regulate the time and manner of administering certain oaths. It established the oath that all civilian and military officials take before entering into the service of our nation. Our Founders understood that the security of the Republic depended on leaders who would honor and uphold constitutional rule of law, lest the Republic would dissolve into a democratic state ruled by men.

Notably, the oath mandates the support and defense of our Constitution , a document revered not only for its timeless precepts, but for its crisp and clear language. The oath refers to our Constitution precisely as it was ratified, not the so called “living constitution” rewritten by judicial activists, who populate what Thomas Jefferson predicted would become “the despotic branch”.

Veterans support and defend our Constitution with their lives, while most elected officials debase it with all manner of extra-constitutional empowerment of the central government, and forced income redistribution to benefit the constituency groups which re-elect them. That is to say, while veterans have nobly honored their oath, most elected officials have disgracefully violated the same.

In recent months, we have been swamped with ugly politics. This week, we saw the whirlwind that an ostensibly conservative political party reaps when it abandons its oath of office and platform. If Republicans thought they could retain majorities in the legislative branch by offering themselves as the lesser of two evils, they were sorely, grossly, terribly mistaken. They overestimated conservative tolerance for those who desert their oaths.

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By contrast this Veterans Day, consider the story of one American who never violated his oath. That American is my friend and Patriot mentor, Col. Roger Ingvalson.

Roger was born in Austin, Minnesota, in the era between the World Wars. He was an all-American kid, attending local schools and then the University of Minnesota. He joined the Air Force in 1950 and earned his wings in 1953. He married Jacqueline in 1959, and they had one son. He spent the next nine years as an operations officer for fighter squadrons around the world.

In 1968, Roger was flying the F-105D with the 34th Tactical Fighter Squadron out of Korat Royal Air Force Base, Thailand. The air war over Vietnam was in its third year, and the pilot casualty list included Roger’s wingman and best friend, Wayne Fullam, who was shot down in late 1967.

On 28 May, Roger took off on his 87th combat sortie, leading a mission to destroy a bridge in North Vietnam. (Roger notes lightheartedly today that it is very important to keep the number of mission takeoffs and landings equal.) With 1600 hours in the F-105, he was confident that this mission would be a success. As he pulled off the target, an air controller requested that he hit an enemy truck convoy nearby.

Roger’s tactical preference was for high speed and low altitude engagement in order to assure accuracy. At about 0900, he located the convoy of Soviet-built trucks near Dong Hoi and rolled in at more than 500 knots. At 50 feet above the hard deck, he fired a long 20mm burst into the convoy.

Moments later, Roger recalls, “I heard and felt an explosion and my cockpit immediately filled with smoke. I hit the afterburner to gain valuable altitude, then pulled the canopy ejection handle to get rid of the smoke. I rocketed up to about 600 feet before my aircraft went into an uncontrollable roll. I pulled the ejection seat handle and squeezed the trigger. As I was catapulted out of the burning aircraft, the wind blast knocked me out, and I didn’t regain consciousness until just prior to landing on a dried out rice paddy.”

Give John Kerry the brilliant rebuttal he deserves with this bumper sticker memo from ’Irak!’

As he hit the ground, Roger’s first reaction was to feel for broken bones. “With 15 years of fighter-aircraft experience, I was fully aware of the fact that there is very little chance of survival during an emergency ejection at high speed and low altitude, without a multitude of injuries. To my amazement, I had no broken bones or other injuries.”

Roger had regularly attended church for 40 years, but he says his relationship with his Savior really began when he realized he had survived the ejection. He prayed and gave thanks as his would-be Communist captors were running toward him.

For the next 1,742 days, Roger endured torture, starvation, desolation, disease and one stretch of 20 months in strict solitary confinement.

Three years into his horrendous internment, Jane Fonda showed up in Hanoi to collaborate with Roger’s captors. She starred in a propaganda film purporting that American POWs were being treated humanely. Roger and other POWs were shown that film repeatedly in an effort to further break their spirit. Hanoi Jane even posed for photographs on an NVA anti-aircraft gun near his prison. She boasted of the civil unrest being fomented back home by leftists like her friend John Kerry who “aided and abetted the enemy” by accusing American service personnel in Vietnam of all manner of atrocities.

Roger received devastating news in late 1971, when he was told by his captors that his wife, Jackie, had died months earlier from complications related to multiple sclerosis. Roger recalls, “During the three years since capture, I had continually dreamed of her in a crippled condition. Then the night after receiving the tragic news, I had another dream of my dear wife—this time she was in perfect health, just like the day we were married. She had gained the victory from suffering and sin; whereas, I gained the peace of knowing that she was in heaven.” (His 13-year old son was taken in by Jackie’s parents.)

On 14 March 1973, after nearly five years of brutal incarceration, Roger and his fellow POWs, including future Senator John McCain, departed for Clark Air Base in the Philippines. There, for the first time in half a decade, he was given medical aid, wholesome food and clean clothes. “The Lord sustained me through 1,742 days of tragedy; nevertheless, I count my blessings. I was set free by the North Vietnamese Communists but had already been fully liberated by Jesus Christ.”

Col. Roger Ingvalson retired from the Air Force a couple of years after his release. His decorations included the Silver Star, a Bronze Star, a Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Legion of Merit, the DFC with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Air Medal with 6 Oak Leaf Clusters, and the POW Medal.

However, the most remarkable chapter in this Vietnam Vet’s story was yet to be written.

Upon his return to the United States, Roger married the widow of Wayne Fullam, his wingman and best friend, and they raised their combined family of four sons together. After returning to his wife’s hometown of Chattanooga, Tennessee, Roger spent the rest of his career in prison ministry.

To Roger, and all our fellow Patriots who have served their nation with courage and great sacrifice, we offer our heartfelt gratitude. You have honored your oath to “support and defend,” as do those on the frontline in Iraq today. You have kept the flame of liberty, lit by our Founders, burning bright for future generations.

In 1918, the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month marked the cessation of World War I hostilities. That date is now designated in honor of our veterans, and a focal point for national observance is the placing of a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery.

Let us never, ever forget.

(On a personal note: It is somehow fitting, that in final edit on an essay honoring veterans this morning, I received word that my Uncle Ted—a Naval Aviator and my father’s wingman in World War II, passed away. Farewell to another Patriot Veteran of the Greatest Generation. He was one of my heroes, a gentleman who always had a smile and a great story. Thank you, Uncle Ted, for introducing your sister to my father!)

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Top 10 States With the Worst Business Tax Climates for Fiscal Year 2007

Is it any wonder that most of these states vote democratic in the state elections.

Posted Oct 24, 2006

Ranked by the Tax Foundation

Every year the Tax Foundation publishes its “State Business Tax Climate Index,” which, according to foundation, “ranks how ‘business friendly’ the 50 state tax systems are, providing a roadmap for state lawmakers concerned with keeping their states tax competitive. . . . Keeping a state competitive in today’s global market can be difficult, but there is one factor lawmakers have direct control over: the quality of state tax systems. The index measures how well a state’s tax system encourages investment by maintaining a broad tax base and low rates.” Below are the 10 states that came in at the bottom of the Tax Foundation’s FY 2007 index, along with their FY 2006 ranking.

10. Minnesota
FY 2006 Rank: 12

9. Maine
FY 2006 Rank: 8

8. Iowa
FY 2006 Rank: 7

7. Nebraska
FY 2006 Rank: 6

6. California
FY 2006 Rank: 9

5. Vermont
FY 2006 Rank: 5

4. New York
FY 2006 Rank: 2

3. New Jersey
FY 2006 Rank: 3

2. Ohio
FY 2006 Rank: 4

1. Rhode Island
FY 2006 Rank: 1

Top 10 States With the Best Business Tax Climates for Fiscal Year 2007

The residents of these states should be proud

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Every year the Tax Foundation publishes its “State Business Tax Climate Index,” which, according to foundation, “ranks how ‘business friendly’ the 50 state tax systems are, providing a roadmap for state lawmakers concerned with keeping their states tax competitive. . . . Keeping a state competitive in today’s global market can be difficult, but there is one factor lawmakers have direct control over: the quality of state tax systems. The index measures how well a state’s tax system encourages investment by maintaining a broad tax base and low rates.” Last week, we published the 10 states with the worst business tax climates. Below are the 10 states that came in at the top of the Tax Foundation’s index, along with their FY 2006 ranking.

10. Oregon
FY 2006 Rank: 10

9. Delaware
FY 2006 Rank: 9

8. Montana
FY 2006 Rank: 8

7. New Hampshire
FY 2006 Rank: 6

6. Texas
FY 2006 Rank: 7

5. Florida
FY 2006 Rank: 5

4. Nevada
FY 2006 Rank: 4

3. Alaska
FY 2006 Rank: 3

2. South Dakota
FY 2006 Rank: 2

1. Wyoming
FY 2006 Rank: 1

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The two major party candidates are both eminently qualified for the job.

this is actually quite funny as the news leader points out how much the majority party candidates are alike, then they turn around an endorse the lessor of the two evils.

Tom Martz
candidate for the 139th

Talent is right choice for Senate

For all the negativity and outside national interest obscuring Missouri's race for U.S. Senate, one fundamental truth stands out to us.

Election 2006 Online Resource Guide
Republican Jim Talent has had a distinguished career as a state legislator, a member of Congress, an educator and lobbyist and, for the past four years, a U.S. senator.

Democrat Claire McCaskill, too, has risen from the ranks as a state legislator, a county prosecutor and state auditor. We endorsed her when she ran for governor two years ago because of the experience she would have brought to the job.

We endorsed Talent when he ran for Senate for the same reason.

So who do we choose this time?

Our choice is Talent.

We think he's a better fit for the job. We believe he's done nothing in the past four years to disqualify him from our continued support. And we believe his views are most in line with southwest Missouri voters.

The campaign

Make no mistake, this is a neck and neck race. In meeting with both candidates and analyzing their debate performance, we found plenty to like and dislike about both Talent and McCaskill. What we didn't like about the campaign is that because it became such a national race, with outside money pouring into Missouri by the millions, we believe two good people lost touch with some of the values that made them successful in Missouri politics.

McCaskill embarrassed herself with her statement about President George W. Bush letting the victims of Hurricane Katrina die because they were poor and black. Talent hit below the belt with an advertisement that called his opponent a liar and a cheat.

We hear from voters that they're disgusted by such behavior. But in that regard, Missouri's race is not much different than other big-time races on a national stage, and negative campaigning isn't a voting issue in our minds.

The war

The reason this is such a close race is that when it comes to the big issues, there is much less separation between McCaskill and Talent than either candidate would like you to believe. (Some would suggest that's a reason to vote for Progressive Lydia Lewis or Libertarian Frank Gilmour. We don't think either is qualified for the job, but, to be fair, their views are in stark contrast to the principal two candidates). Let's start with the war. Talent voted for it, and McCaskill says she would have, too. Talent voted for the compromise torture/military tribunal bill, and McCaskill says she would have, too. Talent says he doesn't expect U.S. troops to be in Iraq four years from now; McCaskill says she wants them out in two, "give or take."

While many voters would like this election to be a referendum on the war, if it is, the primary difference between the two candidates is that Talent refuses to support a deadline for withdrawal and McCaskill does. On that issue, we think Talent has it right.

There's no doubt that the Bush administration has mishandled the war. On that, Republicans and Democrats agree. And Talent deserves criticism for voting in lock step with the president on this issue. But when asked about the future of the battle, both candidates argue similar points, that troops should be withdrawn at some point in the next couple of years. We agree that setting an arbitrary date is the wrong move militarily. We're confident that no matter who wins this race, pressure will build for Bush et al. to change course and develop a plan for getting our troops home safe.

Other issues

Looking at the other issues, the candidates also argue similar positions.

Both claim to be in favor of a fence at the Mexican border and tougher enforcement of illegal immigration laws, particularly against employers.

Both are in favor of ethanol subsidies, and, frankly, we disagree with them on that position.

Both claim to be fiscally conservative, and, again, we don't think either the Democrats or Republicans can make that claim anymore with a straight face.

On the issue of stem cell research, we find ourselves in disagreement with both of the candidates. We share Talent's disapproval of Amendment 2, though we have different reasons. And we think McCaskill is wrong to disregard the damage to Missouri's constitution the amendment will have if it passes.

One of their primary disagreements is over an issue that we highlighted the last time we endorsed Talent for Senate. He's a big proponent of health-care consortiums for small business. He continues to push that fight at the national level despite opposition from the Democratic Party. We believe such health-care consortiums have the potential to help turn the tide against the rising health-care premiums that hit all of our pocketbooks. That issue is important to southwest Missourians, and it helps tilt the race in Talent's favor.

The future

In the end, we think Talent's steady approach to the Senate is best for Missouri. What he lacks in McCaskill's passion he makes up for in his thoughtful approach to issues. Ultimately, we find both candidates to be moderate voices, but Talent has proven his ability to work with Democrats on key issues in his four years in the office.

We don't blame him for voting with his president anymore than we would blame McCaskill for voting with a Democratic president.

That's the nature of politics. But Talent has succeeded in being bipartisan on issues of importance to Missouri.

The nature of a difficult campaign has forced him to refine positions, and we have McCaskill to thank for that. It's why tough campaigns are better than no campaigns at all.

If Talent is re-elected, we hope he hears from the voters who want clear answers on the war, not more "stay the course" rhetoric. We hope he finds the votes he needs to pass a health-care consortium law.

Ultimately, this race is going to be a nail-biter come election night.

For voters who have yet to make up their minds, we suggest Talent is the best candidate for southwest Missouri.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Schoolcraft is best choice in 139th District

how typical of the SnL to leave me out of the whole article. I went in early to my appointment and also allowed an individual from the community sit in during my interview process. I answered all of Brian Lewis's questions of course the way he was scribling the answers down I should've known something was up. I had never anticipated receiving the nomination however the part written about Shane Schoeller looks like it came from one of my blogs on the subject.
The least they could've done was to include me in the coverage since I filed paperwork up in Jeff City to have my name placed on the ballot.

I'm Tom Martz the unknown Libertarian candidate for the 139th district a vote for me goes toward stemming the tide of socialism in MO.

Real-life experience makes difference.

Voters in the 139th District have a choice between two candidates with distinct differences.

They can vote for a candidate who has learned the ropes of the legislative process by working for elected officials most of his adult life.

Or they can vote for a candidate who has learned the ropes of life by attending the school of hard knocks.

One candidate, Republican Shane Schoeller, has quite the political pedigree, having worked for John Ashcroft, Roy Blunt and Matt Blunt.

The other candidate, Democrat Jamie Schoolcraft, is a paramedic and volunteer firefighter who has been politically active since he was a teenager.

Both candidates are smart, understand the northern Greene County district and would be worthy replacements for outgoing Rep. Brad Roark.

Both men would be conservative in their approach to issues.

Both make faith a central point of their campaigns.

But of the two of them, Schoolcraft, we believe, has more potential to be a strong, independent voice who can truly make a difference in Jefferson City.

Where Schoolcraft rises above Schoeller is in his real-life experience, his firm opposition to school vouchers and in his creative approach to dealing with health care.

Schoolcraft is firmly in the anti-vouchers camp, and he understands particularly how passing pro-voucher legislation could hurt small school districts such as those in northern Greene County. "Our district is proud of their public schools," Schoolcraft says. "The schools are the lifeblood of our communities."

Schoeller tries to walk a tightrope on vouchers, suggesting that in certain school districts — though not those in Greene County — they might work. His approach, however, is problematic, and we believe the best position is total opposition to the concept.

On health care, Schoolcraft has a specific proposal to remake the Medicaid system that involves the sort of public-private partnership that is likely in the ballpark of what the Republican majority will recommend early next year. The plan would take the state out of the medical micromanaging business and create a more direct patient-insurance company relationship among those on state-funded insurance. It's an idea worth pursuing.

Mostly, we give Schoolcraft the nod because while Schoeller has a firm grasp of the legislative process, we believe the Democrat's real-life experience gives him more independence and a better capacity to make the tough decisions. He's seen people at their most vulnerable and knows how to keep them in mind when he's in the Capitol making legislative decisions. As he says, he's "not your average Democrat."

When he was 16 years old, Schoolcraft helped found a booster club in Bois D'Arc that raised money for tornado warning sirens. His entire young life has been marked by public service, as a teacher, paramedic and volunteer.

Voters in the 139th should help him continue his life of public service by electing him their state representative.

Decision 2006

Today's races: 139th District Our vote: Jamie Schoolcraft

Ohio Court Rules BSL Unconstitutional

score one for the freedoms and rights of all individuals for once.

[Tuesday, March 07, 2006]

The Sixth District Court of Appeals in Ohio handed responsible dog owners a monumental victory last week when it ruled that local and state breed-specific "vicious" dog laws were unconstitutional. In a 2-1 decision, the Court held that Toledo Municipal Code 505.14a. (limiting ownership to one "pit bull" per household) and Ohio Revised Code 955.11 and 955.22 (failure of pit bull owner to provide liability insurance) violated several constitutional rights, including the right to due process. The Appellate Court held, just as the Ohio State Supreme Court did in 2004, that such laws do not provide owners with an opportunity to appeal a "vicious" dog finding before being penalized or charged with non-compliance, thereby violating their right to be heard and to defend their property.

The Appellate Court went on to declare these laws unconstitutional for two other reasons, both of which are extremely significant to those who have argued against breed-specific legislation for many years. First, the Court ruled that the laws violated an owner's right to equal protection since there is no rational basis to single out pit bulls as inherently dangerous. It stated that breed-specific laws "have in the past been enacted based on outdated information that perpetuates a stereotypical image of pit bulls." The Court found no new evidence to prove that these breeds are any more dangerous than others. Regulating or limiting pit bull ownership was therefore "arbitrary, unreasonable and discriminatory."

A final important ruling was the Court's determination that these breed-specific laws were unconstitutionally vague due to the fact that there is no accurate way to properly identify a pit bull. "Based on the facts presented," wrote Judge William Skow, "we conclude that the subjective identification of pit bulls may often include both non-pit bulls or dogs which are not vicious, to the extent that an ordinary citizen would not understand that he was breaking the law and which would result in the occurrence of arbitrary arrest and criminal charges."

For years, the American Kennel Club, many animal organizations, and countless responsible dog owners have opposed breed-specific laws in favor of reasonable, enforceable dangerous dog laws that hold all owners responsible for their dogs' behavior, regardless of breed. The Court's ruling last week supports those arguments, and AKC applauds its decision. Although the City of Toledo has indicated it will appeal, this case will hopefully serve as a precedent for legislators in their future efforts to address dangerous dog issues in their communities and states.