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Scott Walker Caricature

EPSON MFP image

Whether you agree with him or not, you have to admire the tremendous courage of Scott Walker. Most politicians would have caved after the vicious attacks he endured, all because he wanted to do the best for his state and bring in a little fiscal responsibility. Of course, that means putting some reins on the money train, but apparently that was enough to get out of state special interests to try and get him recalled… twice.

me and scott walker

I actually got to meet him. And I made him laugh. (always makes my day when I can get people to laugh, especially high ranking politicians.) I’m not all that crazy about the photo, however. The lighting’s weird and that glare in my glasses makes me look devious. I was having a bad hair day and my exhaustion is showing.

Because Walker wanted to avoid the appearance of all evil, he declined to take home the portrait, signing it instead (see the silver sharpee halfway down the image?), and putting it into the permanent collection of the Centennial Institute’s growing art museum collection.

Political Balance

Extremism exists on both sides of the political spectrum. I’m not really a fan of either, but then again, my world view just happens to be exact center.

I say this in jest, knowing that there are many liberals who actually believe this to be true. They cannot conceive of a world in which their worldview just might be left of center, perhaps even far left. To them, they are the center and everything to the right must be extreme.

In reality, I don’t think the center actually exists. Every issue has a right and left side to it and to be in the center is to say that you simply don’t care. The moment you care is the moment you leave the center.

The danger in thinking you are the center is that you’ll eventually fail to see how far to a certain direction you end up being. This is especially true of the media. Instead of being watchdogs of our country, they are complicit in ushering in the left wing trend that is bringing us dangerously close to socialism. And I’m sorry, but to me, socialism is leftism to the extreme. I want no part of it in this country.

Having the two parties usually provides a good balance in order to keep the country more or less center. However, if any one party becomes successful in tipping us over that edge, it will be next to impossible to ever get back to that balance. I fear that’s where we are right now in this country. This coming election could be the deciding election on whether we finally topple over to the left in a collective heap, or whether we are able to bring about some right-wing balance.

The Bain of the Political Season

It is absolutely frustrating having to listen to the droning back and forth between the Romney camp and the Obama camp about his time at Bain Capital. Really?  Have politics denigrated to the point where we are arguing over stupid dates of when somebody left their job ten years ago? I am really trying hard to figure out how this is relevant to saving our country.

I understand the arguments. The Obama camp has accused Romney of a felony for saying he left the company at one date, but then kept working. Typical leftist smear, and even after Romney has come out on CNN to disprove all of Obama’s accusations, the media is continuing to run with the story.

Shame on Obama for this kind of smear politics! But double shame on Romney for getting himself dragged into it. I get it, at some point you have to stand up and say, look, I’m being completely misrepresented here. But come on, this argument has been going on for far too long, can we start talking about issues again? If I were Romney, there are so many other positives about his record that I would parade instead.

The biggest argument Democrats are propping is that Bain shipped jobs overseas while Romney ran Bain. Conservatives countered by saying this occurred after he left in 1999. But aren’t they both missing the point? What about all of the American jobs that Bain DID create? This record is overwhelmingly positive.

And so what if jobs got shipped overseas? Is that not a reflection of just how difficult it has become to hire American help? Between the overinflated union salaries, the herculean hoops and regulations, and the heavy tax burden, it’s becoming harder and harder to keep jobs in America. Certain city governments in America promise to audit all business owners and make their lives an accounting nightmare. And that’s just at the city level. Keeping track of all the different stupid taxes at all the different levels has become a headache. You’ve got property taxes (which are much higher for commercial than residential space), usage taxes (if you don’t know what usage taxes are, look it up, it is one of the most cumbersome and burdensome taxes out there), sales tax, income tax, taxes for hiring an employee, taxes for making certain products, taxes for using certain products, taxes for small animals that live in the area, and on and on it goes!

Then we have all of the regulations, for some industries, so many, that failure to adhere is a certainty. And we are surrounded by people more than willing to enforce these burdens through litigation, penalties and fines. As a result, most businesses simply will cease to exist if they DIDN’T outsource, at least at some level.

It amazes me on how completely ignorant of business most of these Democrat talking heads are. If they’d ever been in charge of a large and successful organization, they would know that the head does not make a lot of the intermediary decisions. These belong to the managers underneath him, and even smaller decisions belong to the managers underneath them. If the head were to micromanage every decision, he would never sleep, eventually burn out and the company would collapse. Thus, chances are high that if in fact overseas hiring did occur during Romney’s tenure at Bain, he probably was not even aware it.

And even if he was, it says to me, more than anything, that he’s a good business person. It shows me that he is willing to take whatever steps are necessary to keep his businesses alive. I would question his judgment if he chose NOT to send certain jobs overseas, ESPECIALLY if the end result was the loss of a business. Which provides jobs for the American people: A business that has had to outsource some of its labor, or a business that no longer exists? It also says to me that Romney must personally know of all of the legal headaches to keeping a job in America, and thus he would know exactly how to fix those issues in order to attract businesses back to America! Right now, I’d much rather have a shrewd manager in our oval office than the economics ignoramus we currently have.

I don’t remember where I saw this, perhaps it was an Obama ad, but basically somebody mentioned that while Romney was at Bain, he made a 15 million dollar profit, therefore, he is not fit to serve as president. I was floored when I heard this. Are you serious? That’s exactly why he SHOULD be president! This demonstrates success. Do we not want success leading us? It demonstrates an understanding of how to manage money. In our financial crisis we are in, doesn’t it make sense that the most perfect person to get us out of this mess is somebody who knows how to do it?

But what angered me more than the fact that they were saying this is that they are gambling on Americans finding the ability to make a profit to somehow be repulsive. Have we really gotten to this point in America, where success is vilified and making a profit is immoral, perhaps even felonious? We have an entire political party that thinks that this is how to get elected, and to me, that is a sad, sad thing.

I don’t normally leave such long blog entries, but this election cycle has me unnerved. While we keep on focusing on stupid minutia such as when Romney left Bain, the real issues that are at the heart of our American existence continue to be ignored.

Green Energy

So let’s see if I have this straight. The green energy company Solyndra receives tons of money from the stimulus as part of the green jobs initiative. A few months later they go bankrupt. Where did the money go? Not sure, but we find out later that Solyndra contributed to Obama’s election campaign. Something’s not right with this picture, but the complacent media seems all too eager to sweep it under the rug.

Imagine if this was reversed. Suppose Bush earmarked through tax payer dollars a ton of money to some oil company who then gave it back to his election campaign before going bankrupt. The American media would go nuts, the American people would be outraged, and both would be right in doing so. Yet, in the case of Solyndra, we barely get a yawn.

What’s the difference? Is it because Obama is a Democrat, and therefore untouchable? Is it because Solyndra is a Green Energy company, so somehow their actions are divine and holy?

I’m all for standards. But double standards I can’t stand.

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