Taking Our Country Back, Part 2

The reactions I’ve gotten to my Tea Party speech are varied. Some people seem to think I was saying we should all be good little Republicans and vote for whomever “they” put on the ballot. One person actually thought I was advocating taking up arms against our government. (Not sure how he got that…)

Let me clarify my intent. If we truly want to take our country back, and restore it to the Republic that our founding fathers intended, we need to do it within the framework established by our founding fathers. That means we do it by voting. Voting alone is not sufficent, however. We need to get actively involved.

Setting aside wishful thinking, and acknowledging the reality of our two-party system, if we want to effect change in our government, we need to control one of the two major parties. The Democrat Party has already been spoken for by socialists; we’re not going to get much traction there. The Republican Party was originally founded on the same principles on which the Tea Party movement is founded. It seems reasonable to believe we have a chance of restoring that party to its true, legitimate roots.

I believe the Republican Party has betrayed the principles on which it was founded, and has been betraying them for years. I’m by no means suggesting that conservatives should fall in with the party line. I’m saying the opposite. Conservatives should be the ones defining the party line. The party line (platform) is formulated by the members who actively participate as PCPs and delegates. It’s very easy to become a PCP, and the PCPs elect the delegates. If we want to take back the party, we have to do it from within. That means registering Republican and working as grass roots activists within the party to rebuild it from the ground up.

As individuals, whether it makes more sense to register Republican or third party depends on the goals we want to achieve. If our goal is to find other idealistic people who all agree with us, we’re more likely to achieve that goal in a third party, because it’s a smaller, more narrowly focused group. If our goal is to actually change our government, and truly take our country back, the very quality that makes third parties effective in achieving the first goal makes them unable to achieve the second. We need massive numbers to achieve change in government.

If we can concede that we will always have some differences, but work together on the common goals that are most important to all of us, we can stop this country’s slide toward socialism and actually turn it around. But it takes a willingness to focus on the core goals that unite us (small government, less regulation, lower taxes) and a willingness to set aside (at least temporarily) the issues that divide us. And it takes a willingness to commit some of our time and energy to the worthwhile effort of taking our country back.

The idea of taking up arms against our government seems to have an appeal to some people. As a realist, I’m very much aware that, no matter how many weapons we might stockpile, we cannot outgun the mightiest military the world has ever known. Military technology has come a long way since 1776. In fact, the government wouldn’t even need to send in the military to quell a rebellion today. They could just shut down the power grid. That’s reality.

I’m not suggesting people shouldn’t stockpile weapons. I’m just saying it won’t help us save our nation. However, if it should come to pass that we do actually lose our country, then a stockpile of weapons could come in very handy. But, by that point, our nation would already be irretrievably lost, along with the ideals and principles upon which it was founded. I hope and pray it never comes to that.

Tax Day Tea Party Speech: Taking Our Country Back

This is the speech I gave at the Southern Oregon Tax Day Tea Party.

Welcome to the Tax Day Tea Party! — Have you filed your taxes yet?
– Are you happy with way your taxes are being spent?
– Do you like the direction our county is going?
– Do you want to take our county back?

– How many of you are patriots?
– As a patriot, what are you willing to do for your country?
– Would you be willing to take up arms to defend your country?
– Would you be willing to take up a pen, and mark your ballot, and drop it in the mailbox?

You may not realize it, but the most patriotic thing you can do this year is vote! — This year, it’s absolutely imperative that we start taking our country back. And, in a Constitutional Republic, the way we do that is by voting.

The other day, I was talking to the publisher of a national conservative Web site. He told me he’d rather have Barack Obama as president than John McCain. I said why? He said, under either of them, the country would continue its slide into socialism. Under McCain, we’d just get there slower. But when things get really bad, really fast, the people will rise up and start a revolution.

I respectfully disagreed. I said that, sometimes, you have to slow down to turn around. You can’t make a U-turn while accelerating. — And, once you go over the cliff, it’s too late to slam on the breaks.

If we should ever get to the point where it’s necessary for citizens to take up arms against our own government, it will be way too late to save our nation. That’s why we need to start taking our country back now.

I’m here today to talk about how we can do that. But first I want to tell you a parable. — Once upon a time, there was a blue state that had one Republican senator. After a couple of terms in office, he had learned the “fine art of compromise” so well that he had slipped to the left of his core constituency. He was by no means a liberal, but he wasn’t nearly as conservative as he’d been when first elected, and a lot of conservatives were disenchanted with him.

Come the next election, he was challenged by a far left, Socialist-leaning, liberal Democrat. And a conservative 3rd party candidate decided to run against him, too. It was a very close race. When the votes were counted, the Democrat got just under 49%. The Republican got almost 46%. The 3rd party candidate got just over 5%.

The Democrat won. But, if you added together the votes for the Republican and the 3rd party candidate, they added up to just about 51%. By splitting the conservative vote, the 3rd party candidate handed the election to the Democrat.

But wait. There’s more! — Not only did the state lose its only Republican representative in Washington, it so happened that the Democrats were only one seat short of a super-majority in the Senate. The loss of that Republican seat gave them the super-majority they needed to pass the Obama Healthcare bill without even having to negotiate with the Republicans. — And the saddest part of this story is that it’s true. And it happened right here in Oregon, in the last election.

The moral is, if you withhold your vote from the lesser of two evils, you help the greater evil win. — What good is “voting your conscience” if the real world result is that you help push the nation further into socialism? — That’s not the way to take our country back.

I can relate to wanting to vote your conscience. I was a Libertarian for nearly 30 years. (And I still am a “small ‘l’” libertarian.) But a couple of years ago, it came to me that voting 3rd party is a lot like mailing your ballot to Santa Claus. It makes you feel really good, but it has absolutely no impact on the real world, or the outcome of the election, or the future of our nation. So, I may sound like a cynic, but I’m a realist. In the real world, results count.

Voting for RINOs year after year isn’t going to help us save our nation, either. Sometimes it’s necessary, to prevent a greater evil, but what we really need is a plan to get actual conservatives on the ballot.

And I have a plan. It’s a simple, workable, three-step plan to take our country back. Like I said before, I’m a realist. And the reality is that this is a two party system. The Democrat Party has been taken over by socialists. The Republican Party is in utter disarray. And, the more conservatives who splinter off into 3rd parties, and 4th parties, and 5th parties, the weaker it gets, — much to the delight of the Democrats.

The good news is, if you look at the Tea Party movement all across the nation, it’s clear that there are enough conservatives now that, if we were to all unite behind one party, we have enough votes to take our country back. — But that isn’t going to happen as long as we’re all pulling in different directions. And every 3rd party that’s formed for the purpose of bringing us all together only splits us up further. — To have a real impact, we need to all unite behind one party.

The Republican Party has traditionally been the party of small government, less regulation, and lower taxes. That’s what the Tea Party movement is all about. The Republican Party used to be the party of principle. It hasn’t been that for a long time. But, with our dedication, our motivation, and our numbers, we can take it back and restore it to the Grand Old Party that it used to be. We need to turn the tide, stop the exodus, and start a new flood of conservatives into the Republican Party.

Here’s the plan:

Step 1. Register Republican. Get your friends to register Republican. We need all the Tea Party conservatives across the nation to register Republican.

Step 2. Become a grass roots activist within the Republican Party. Become a PCP. PCPs are the ones who elect the delegates to the National Convention. Those delegates formulate the national party platform and select the presidential nominee.

Step 3. We need to elect our people to be those delegates. Then we’ll be the ones determining the platform and choosing the presidential nominee for the 2012 election.

We can do this! — And this is how we can take the Republican Party back. And that’s how we can take our government back. And that is how we can take our country back.

Thank you all for being patriots! — Together, we can take our country back! Let’s do it!