Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009

State Capitol Security Fails FBI Test

According to sources who work inside the State Capitol building in Oklahoma City, a test of Capitol security today by the FBI showed much to be lacking.

A suspicious package was left on the first floor rotunda; the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, which runs the security at the Capitol, discovered the package and reported that it appeared to be a bomb.

Word is that this was a test of the security measures at the Capitol by the FBI, and Capitol security failed the test. Reportedly, an agent brought the mock bomb through the main east entrance of the building, and made it through security without being detected or stopped. The Capitol has been buzzing with OHP officers ever since the incident.

Arnett Signs 'New Contract for America"

Republican congressional candidate Dan Arnett signed the 'New Contract for America' at a meeting of the 2nd District GOP Saturday. For more information on the New Contract for America, please click here.

Arnett is the second candidate in the race to sign the pledge so far; Daniel Edmonds signed on September 23rd.

You can find out more about Dan Arnett by visiting his website. The other candidates in the race for the Republican nomination are Daniel Edmonds, Howard Houchen, and Charles Thompson.

With the 3rd Quarter FEC filing period coming to a close on September 30th, I encourage you to consider sending a contribution to the candidate(s) of your choice. In order to run a viable campaign, these candidates must be able to raise money, and they have to do that with your help.

(The Muskogee Politico has not endorsed any candidate yet, and will not endorse for some time. I will give the candidates, both those currently running and those yet to jump in, time to prove themselves on the campaign trail, as well as show their ability or lack thereof to raise money before a public endorsement. So, candidates... show me how serious you are!)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Conservative View: Optimist or Pessimist

This week's Conservative View, from Adair County Commissioner Russell Turner.
The Conservative View
by Russell Turner

Optimist or Pessimist

We all like to have better things such as a new house or a better auto, but all of these things require more money. Over the past year we have seen the fallout of stretching our finances to the breaking point. People that have lost their jobs are on the verge of losing everything because they cannot pay their bills. Often these people have to take a job that does not pay what they are accustomed too. In the good times we have a habit of assuming that the good times will always be here and we don’t have to worry about our finances. Personally I prefer to have a small nest egg and plan for the worst and hope for the best. One of the biggest flaws that many people have is the inability to budget their money and prepare for the worst. If we can avoid locking ourselves into too many financial obligations, we can have the flexibility to get through the bad times. Next year we Oklahomans will have the ability to vote on a State Question that could remove any financial flexibility that state budget makers now have.

State Question 744 would require Oklahoma to increase it’s per pupil spending to the regional average. While we all want to have quality education for our children, we need to remember that other agencies in the government also have to be funded. Granted, Oklahoma education spending ranks low in the country, but so do other agencies in state government. For example, corrections, transportation and a host of other agencies are also short of money. Tax revenues are like a bucket of water, there are only a certain amount of drops in that bucket. The only way to increase the amount for education is to pass more taxes, consolidate smaller schools, reduce or eliminate certain classes or courses, or plan for extra tax revenue because of future growth or the most likely - simple cutting the budget of other agencies.

We had better weigh the costs very carefully when we go to the polls to vote on State Question 744. The money necessary will have to come from somewhere and the other state services may have to take a hit in order to satisfy the funding requirements for SQ 744. I try to not be a pessimist,but I have found that the difference between an optimist and a pessimist is the pessimist has more and better information.

If you wish to contact Russell Turner, or want to subscribe to his email loop, click here.

Friday, September 25, 2009

State Rep. Faught Draws 2010 Opponent

State Rep. George Faught (R, Muskogee) appears to have drawn a Democratic opponent for the upcoming 2010 election.

Fort Gibson Democrat Brad Clinkenbeard has filed a Statement of Organization (SO-1) with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission, officially forming his campaign committee.

Faught was first elected in 2006, shocking state Democrat and Republican leaders, and became the only Republican in state history to win the House District 14 seat. He was subsequently reelected in 2008 with 56% of the vote, in a district with only about 25% registered Republicans.

2nd District Congressional Race Update: Fisher Drops Out

Bert Fisher, Republican candidate for the 2nd District congressional seat currently held by Democrat Dan Boren, has officially dropped out of the race. Fisher, a Tulsa resident, had been attending party functions across the district over the past five months.

Fisher made the announcement in an email to party leaders.

"This has been a gut-wrenching decision, as I really want to be in the fight to correct the wrongs that are going on in America," he said. He cited his inability to run his business while campaigning as the main reason for his withdrawal.

He has not announced which candidate he will support. The remaining hopefuls are Dan Arnett of Henryetta, Daniel Edmonds of Morris, Howard Houchen of Hugo, and Charles Thompson of Hulbert.

Keep watching this blog for the latest updates on the 2010 2nd District Congressional race.

Netanyahu Slams Ahmadinejad, UN at UN General Assembly

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu absolutely slams Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in this speech at the United Nations General Assembly.

Too bad the Ahmadinejad wasn't present to see minutes from the Wannsee Conference, which presented the plan for deportation and extermination of the Jews by the Nazis. Too bad Ahmadinejad wasn't present when Bibi held up the original plans, signed by Nazi Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler, for the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp.

Bibi also slammed those who sat through the
Ahmadinejad speech, and praised those nations who walked out of the chamber in protest. He also condemned UN hypocrisy in dealing with the Israeli-Palestinian conflicts; in particular, when Iranian-backed Hamas fired rockets into Israel.

The fiery speech is excellent, and I recommend listening to the speech in its entirety. Would that our president was more like Bibi...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Edmonds Signs 'New Contract for America'

Congressional candidate Daniel Edmonds sent out the following press release this morning.
Edmonds Signs 'New Contract for America'

MORRIS, OK – U.S. Congressional District 2 candidate, Daniel Edmonds, recently signed the New Contract for America. Similar to the 1994 Contract with America, the current grassroots movement seeks to nationalize the 2010 elections. However, unlike the 1994 movement, which promised specific legislation, the current efforts are looking for a promise that all legislation will be looked at through the lens of the U.S. Constitution.

By signing the New Contract for America, congressional candidates pledge that, if elected, they will do their duty to uphold the Constitution and maintain and support these United States as our forefathers envisioned through the Constitution. As one of the first congressional candidates nationwide, and the first congressional candidate in Oklahoma to sign, Edmonds has indicated his commitment to work earnestly to preserve liberty, capitalism, and the great republic established by our founding fathers.

“I’m pledging to the American people, to Oklahomans, and specifically to those of the Second U.S. Congressional District that, if given the opportunity to serve, I will vote on all legislation with a conservative interpretation of the U.S. Constitution,” Edmonds said. “It will be my desire and commitment to vote in line with the U.S. Constitution 100 percent of the time.”

To learn more about the New Contract for America or to read the details of the contract being signed by conservative congressional candidates, visit NewContractForAmerica.org. To learn more about Daniel Edmonds and his current campaign for Oklahoma’s U.S. Congressional District 2 Seat, visit DanielEdmonds.org.

You can find out more about Daniel Edmonds by visiting his website. The other candidates in the race for the Republican nomination are Dan Arnett, Bert Fisher, Howard Houchen, and Charles Thompson.

With the 3Q FEC filing period coming to a close on September 30th, I encourage you to consider sending one (or all!) of these candidates a contribution. It takes money to run a viable campaign, and the sooner we can identify the GOP nominee, the better.

Mayor to Announce Reelection Plans at State of the City

Muskogee Mayor John Tyler Hammons plans to announce his reelections intentions at his State of the City address next Thursday.

Hammons was first elected in the spring of 2008, when he was 19 years old, defeating long-time former mayor Hershel McBride, who was attempting to reenter city politics. At the time, this made Hammons the youngest mayor in the country, and his election drew significant media attention.

According to the Muskogee Phoenix, Hammons stated "I will be announcing whether I will be running for re-election as well as another thing that will be affecting our economy. I've been meeting with various other players, who I can’t identify at this time, who are on board with the idea and we'll be taking it to the public."

City Councilor Jim Ritchey has already announced his plans to run for mayor. The election will be held on April 6th, 2010.

I fully expect Mayor Hammons to run for reelection, mainly because he has not been able to accomplish much of what he originally set out to do - campaign finance reform, term limits, ward voting, et cetera.

Hammons will be delivering his State of the City address at the annual Chamber of Commerce luncheon at 11:30am on october 1st at the Muskogee Civic Center.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Conservative View: Kevlar and Boxing

The Conservative View for this week, from Adair County Commissioner Russell Turner.
The Conservative View
by Russell Turner

Kevlar and Boxing

Over the past years more and more police officers and soldiers are wearing Kevlar vests when they are on duty. Without the use of the vests many police officers and soldiers would not have lived when shot in the line of duty. The vest is a defensive tool. The vest cannot be used as a weapon to injure our kill someone but it provides the protection to save the lives of good people that could have been killed or crippled in the line of duty. A wise person always plans for the defense of their family and themselves. With that in mind I have some very serious concerns about the decision by the current administration to scale back the missile defense system in Eastern Europe.

We Americans may have watched too many graphic horror movies or played too many violent video games. May be we have become numb to the horror that can be in the world. I remember the words of one of our presidents when he said that in a nuclear war the living would envy the dead. If a missile defense system could save only one city, the price of the system would be cheap. There are more countries every day that are trying to acquire nuclear weapons. It will only be a matter of time until some one will push the button and use them.

Some nations are pleased with the decision to cancel the system, one of them being Russia. We Americans need to come to the realization that there are people in this world that do not like us. How much sense does it make to not use a protective measure that could save millions of people, if we used the same mentality we would ask police officers and soldiers to quit using Kevlar.

Many of us enjoy the sport of boxing and we can learn a lot about life by watching the sport. In boxing there is a set of rules and after each round the boxers can go to their corners and prepare for the next round. The sport of boxing may be a rough sport but there are rules, in the art of war there are no rules. One side will not stop when the bell rings to allow us to prepare for the next battle. No matter how good of a punch a boxer might have, if he cannot fend of the punches of his opponents he will never win.
If you wish to contact Russell Turner, or want to subscribe to his email loop, click here.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Spotlight on 2010: Charles Thompson (R)

Spotlight on 2010 2nd District candidates: Charles Thompson (R)
A continuing series from the Muskogee Politico

Today's spotlight candidate is Charles Thompson of Hulbert. Thompson is one of five currently announced Republican candidates for the Second Congressional District. The others are Dan Arnett (post), Daniel Edmonds (post), Howard Houchen (post), and Bert Fisher.

Thompson has been married to his wife Aprill for 19 years, and has three children.

He served the United States Army in both an active duty and reserve capacity for over 25 years, starting his military career as a Cavalry Scout and then reenlisting to become an Infantryman. After finishing his undergraduate work at Northeastern State University, and obtaining his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Oklahoma State University, Thompson went back to the Army as a Veterinary Corps Officer.

From 2000 to 2005 (when he was deployed to Europe) Thompson owned a mixed animal practice in Fort Gibson. Since his return from Europe, Thompson has spent the last 2 1/2 years working for a large veterinary pharmaceutical company based in Duluth, GA.

Thompson originally announced earlier this summer, but withdrew a short time later. However, he has since decided to get back in the race. You can contact him here, or visit his Facebook account here.

Did You Get an IMC Polling Call?

I received a call last night from "IMC Polling", on the 2012 GOP Presidential Primary. They asked me which candidate would I vote for out of the following:
  • Mike Huckabee
  • Mitt Romney
  • Newt Gingrich
  • Rudy Giuliani
  • Bobby Jindal (they pronounced it Jin-dell)
  • Other
  • Not Sure
If you got the call as well, let me know by posting a comment or emailing me. Apparently, this poll only went out to Oklahomans, according to the preliminary findings at Race42012.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Poland Cannot Trust the West

Poland Cannot Trust the West

The White House, caving to Russian pressure, announced today that the Bush-proposed missile defense shield in Poland and the Czech Republic was being canceled. The plan had been fairly controversial, especially with the Russian leaders, as they viewed it as a threat to them, despite American assurances that it was to counter Iranian missile potential.

This proves once again that Poland can never completely trust the West.

Poland has a sad history of betrayal by Western powers.

In 1939, in the face of Nazi saber rattling, Britain and France gave Poland a guarantee that if Hitler invaded Poland, both nations would launch war on Germany. On September 1st, 1939, Der Führer invaded and the West did very little to hinder him. On September 17th Soviet Russia joined in, attacking Poland from the east. The Polish doctrine of two enemies (Germany to the west, Russia to the east) was proven true once again. A truly free and independent Poland disappeared until the fall of both Nazism (1945) and the Soviet Union (1989-1991).

During World War II, Polish troops formed a significant portion of Allied soldiery (one of the largest national contingents), contributing greatly in the Battle for Britain and the Italian Campaign. On the home front, the Home Army formed the largest (and most successful) underground resistance movement in Europe.

As soon as Poland itself fell to Nazi and Soviet aggression, the government-in-exile worked with Great Britain and other western allies to form a plan to reestablish Poland, when the opportunity presented itself. Headway was made, until the Nazis invaded the Soviet Union (through Polish territory), bringing the Soviets onto the Allies side - truly a case of the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

From that point on, Polish "squabbling" over territorial integrity (Soviet Russia had annexed eastern Poland) irritated the British. Poland wanted their land back in its entirety, and the Soviet Union wanted Poland.

The preparations for Operation Tempest, the liberation of Poland and reestablishment of Polish government before the Soviets could take over, continued. The UK and US promised help in various ways; materiel, Polish troops currently fighting under British control, air drops and raids, et cetera.

While assuring the Poles of assistance, Churchill and especially FDR made concessions to Joseph Stalin. Without consulting their Polish allies, Churchill and FDR agreed that the Soviet Union could claim the Curzon Line as their mutual border with Poland, thereby giving the Soviets the eastern third of Poland (while "making up for it" by giving Poland some of eastern Germany). Churchill originally took a harder stance with Stalin, but after learning that FDR had privately agreed with Stalin on the Curzon Line, was forced to go along. All of this came out at the Yalta Conference.

The summer of 1944 finally rolled around. The Red Army had been pushing the Nazi Wehrmacht out of Russia, and entered pre-war Poland, hot on the Germans heels. With "Allied" troops now in Poland, Operation Tempest was launched. Initial contact with the Red Army by the Polish Home Army was friendly, but once the front line rolled past, the Soviet NKVD (forerunner of the KGB) viciously murdered or repatriated to Siberia most Home Army or government officials, and deported masses of civilians. Neither the British nor the Americans believed reports coming out of Poland, calling them "anti-Soviet".

Seeing what became of their comrades-at-arms, the Polish government-in-exile altered the objective of Operation Tempest. The aim was now to liberate Warsaw, the capital, and show the world that Poland was still by right a free land. The "Warsaw Rising" commenced on August 1st, 1944, with the Soviet troops within sight of Warsaw.

For two months the Poles fought in the streets of Warsaw, with little of the promised-British/American aid, and with no cooperation from the suddenly sluggish Soviets. The Polish paratroops were not sent as agreed, aid was limited (in part by Soviet AA fire at Allied planes), and pressure was not applied to the Soviets. Initially planned to only last a few days, the courageous Poles had fought for 63 days, and were forced to surrender only after losing nearly all the ground they had ripped from the Nazis grip.

The West looked the other way as brutal Nazi repression was replaced by even more brutal Soviet repression. The aforementioned Polish doctrine of two enemies was clearly proven again. One could say that the Germans systematically murdered and oppressed specific groups of people (such as Jews and ethnic-Poles), while the Soviets systematically murdered and oppressed all groups. After all, the Soviets had been running the Gulag well over a decade before the Nazi extermination and concentration camps were opened.

Poland, which gave so much for the war effort, was given over to Soviet rule without so much as a whimper from the West. This only changed with the ascension to power of President Ronald Reagan and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who began to roll back past injuries by their support of the Solidarity movement. A free Poland finally emerged after decades of Soviet rule by Western consent.

After 9/11, President Bush courted Eastern Europe, and Poland in particular. Poland contributed to the liberation of Iraq. In light of the growing belligerence coming from Russia, Poland was glad to move closer to the United States. When President Bush proposed his missile defense shield as a safeguard against Iranian nuclear madness, Poland (along with the Czech Republic) agreed to host the facilities. Russia threw a fit, at one point actually threatening "military action" if the installations were placed.

Poland and the Czech Republic, our closest allies in Eastern Europe, took a great risk in defying Russia in this way, only to be thrown under the bus by President Obama. And to add insult to injury, this announcement came on the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Poland.

Obama is acting a lot like another Progressive liberal Democrat President, bowing to pressure by Russia's latest Stalin wannabe.

Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin, 1945 - Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin, 2009

Unfortunately, Poland, the West continues to prove itself untrustworthy in regards to you.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Phoenix Finally Posts Rock's Coburn-bashing Column

Yesterday evening, I posted Sen. Tom Coburn's rebuttal to Muskogee County Democrat chairman Calvin Rock's op-ed. At that time, the Muskogee Phoenix had not posted the column on their website, contrary to practice.

The Phoenix typically posts the Opinion page for the next day's issue the afternoon before. Sometimes, they don't get it done until the next morning, but that is very rare.

The Phoenix ran Rock's column in the print edition on Sunday, August 6th. Noticeably, for some reason they did not post it online.

At the time of my post last night, the article was still not online.

Check out what they did at 10:48 this morning:

(click to see larger picture)

Eight days after the fact, the Phoenix finally decides to post Rock's op-ed? I wonder what prompted them to do that...

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Coburn Responds to County Democrat Column

Sen. Coburn responds to a column that ran in last Sunday's Muskogee Phoenix by Muskogee County Democrat chairman Calvin Rock. Rock's column was about the leftist conspiracy over the D.C. group called "The Family" that Coburn has ties to.

Incidentally, the Phoenix did not post Rock's article on their website, as is usually the case. I can't remember the last time something on their Opinion page was not placed online.

Don’t waste time with conspiracy theories; let’s talk policy
by Sen. Tom Coburn

In a recent op-ed on your page the president of the Muskogee County Democratic Party, Calvin Rock, asks readers to believe that I, Sen. Jim Inhofe, former Rep. Steve Largent and other Republicans are part of a secret, fundamentalist conspiracy bent on controlling our nation. Also, according to Rock, we exclude females and nonwhites, and we tolerate rape.

I normally ignore bizarre personal attacks and conspiracy theories of this nature, but it’s important for readers to understand why Rock is making these outlandish claims.

Rock, I believe, is attempting to participate in a broader debate about faith in the public square.

First, however, it’s telling that the chairman of the Muskogee Democratic Party isn’t using his platform to express the ideas of his party, such as their health care plan, but is instead spending his time recycling conspiracy theories of the radical left.

I’m more than happy to discuss any of my votes or policy positions with Rock or any Oklahoman, Republican or Democrat.

Yet, Rock is not interested in debating policy. Instead, he is engaging in crass, partisan and amateurish character assassination. The people of Oklahoma want constructive solutions from their party leaders, not conspiracy theories.

Second, Rock’s op-ed, I believe, expresses a hostility toward faith in the public square that runs throughout much of the criticisms I’ve seen regarding the “C Street” house and the foundation — which Rock describes as “The Family” — that helps members of Congress host the National Prayer Breakfast every year.

In politics, I’ve found that those who accuse others of harboring secret, nefarious agendas often have hidden agendas of their own. The fact is, the moral failings of some of my roommates at C Street and the subsequent media frenzy about congressional prayer gatherings have given those on the far left ammunition to make their case that anyone who aims to bring faith into the public square has a secret theocratic agenda.

Rock tries to make his case with an argument that is riddled with factual errors and innuendo. In fairness to Rock, some of his errors may be the fault of another author, Jeff Sharlet. What Rock calls “The Family” is hardly an “elite fundamentalism” but a loose and disjointed affiliation of thousands of national and international individuals who have been active in areas of faith, business and politics and who have attended one of the National Prayer Breakfasts in the past 50 years.

People come to the National Prayer Breakfast from all backgrounds for all sorts of reasons. Some are devout Christians, some are Jews, and others have no faith at all. Some come to mingle with politicians while others are seeking answers to life’s most important questions.

The alleged elite fundamentalist organization pulling the strings behind all of this doesn’t have a formal hierarchy or membership roll because they are trying to elevate Christ rather than any organization or individual. It’s true that those involved describe themselves as “followers of Christ,” which is another way of saying Christian. In fact, it is their faith as “followers of Christ” that has led various lay ministers involved in The Family to not only reach out to members of Congress but to children living in inner-city Washington, D.C., and in some of the poorest parts of the world.

If this organization has a secret plan to take over our government, they aren’t having much success. In spite of my best efforts to bend my colleagues to my will, two of the more active participants in congressional prayer breakfasts, Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Mark Pryor, D-Ark., still vote the other way most of the time.

If Oklahomans want to understand the true, “secret” agenda of this group they should read Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and study groups like Young Life and the Navigators.

I believe our country needs more, not fewer, elected officials who acknowledge an authority higher than party or government in their lives.

As Americans, the freedoms we enjoy are a gift from God. We have thrived as a nation because we’ve always understood that our rights as individuals do not come from a king or the state but from a creator.
The public square is not merely a place for faith. It was built on faith.

I make no apologies for that belief, nor do I apologize for trying to live out my faith when I’m away from my home church in Muskogee. I hope readers will put in proper perspective the views of a party operative who would rather attack my faith than my votes.

Calvin Rock's column was based on the recent conspiracy book by author Jeff Sharlett, "The Family - the Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power". Rock is also the president of the Muskogee-area PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) group (real Muskogee/Oklahoma values, wouldn't you say?).

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Conservative View: Hurry Up and Sign

This week's Conservative View, by Adair County Commissioner Russell Turner.
The Conservative View
by Russell Turner

Hurry Up and Sign

All of us have experienced a pushy salesman. Whether we are shopping for an automobile or furniture, there is always a good supply of salesmen that will pressure you to sign the bottom line because the good deal is a onetime offer. We need to remind ourselves that there is always a good deal around the corner. When I bought my last computer, I thought that the price had bottomed out and I would never be able to buy the computer I needed for less money. In less than two months, I could have bought a computer with much more memory at a far cheaper price. Before we get into the frenzy of the moment, we need to look at all options available. The latest frenzy is the health care debate and, just like buying a lemon car, we could be paying a high price for signing the bottom line too soon.

We Americans are notorious for wanting a good deal. We are also notorious for not wanting to pay for the things we need, but we are willing to pay any price for luxury items that we only want. I have noticed that many people don’t have a good concept of running a business or paying their bills. When you look at some of their credit card statements, many people have went so far into debt they cannot make their payments and don’t have a clue to how they got there and how to solve the problem. I have found that for us to have anything of value, we must use discipline to acquire them. For example, if we want a new car a person might have to get a second job or cut back on some other expense to save the money to purchase it.

I feel that many Americans don’t want to be bothered about health care and would rather the government take care of it. They also think that when they need a doctor all they would have to do is to go to the local clinic and not pay anything. Without some type of sacrifice by the patient our system would be totally swamped. I am concerned about catastrophic illness, but for the run of the mill ailments we need to be willing to take care of it ourselves. We need to remember that signing too fast can be far worse than what we have now.
If you wish to contact Russell Turner, or want to subscribe to his email loop, click here.

Muskogee Tea Party - Rain or Shine!

The Muskogee Tea Party will go on, rain or shine! The location is covered, so everyone should be out of the rain, if or when it comes.

September 12th TEA PARTY

Are you worried about our nation’s future, with escalating budget deficits and increasingly oppressive national debt?

Come join fellow patriots for a TEA PARTY!!

When: Saturday, September 12th from Noon to 1:00pm.
Where: Muskogee’s Civic Center Plaza (4th & Okmulgee)

Special emphasis on “Health Care Reform”

Learn how government-run healthcare will affect you and your family!

Speakers on health care: Dr. Jay Gregory, Dr. Tim Robison and Ronald Reagan (see below)
Comparing the US and Canadian health systems: Bert Heibert
American Majority speaker: Trait Thompson

Hear RONALD REAGAN speak on socialized medicine. (Radio address)

Discover what we can do to take our country back!

This is a NON-partisan event open to all patriotic Americans who want to protect their freedoms and futures. Let your voice be heard!

For more information go to: www.teapartymuskogee.com
or contact Jamison Faught at (918) 869-6000.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Muskogee Republican Fall Picnic

The Muskogee County Republican Party is hosting their annual fall picnic this Thursday at Honor Heights Park (North Pavilion).

I highly encourage you to come join in the festivities. Hopper Smith will be delivering a dynamic talk to those present, and you won't want to miss it!

Monday, September 07, 2009

The Obama School Speech

The White House has released President Obama's prepared remarks for his back-to-school address that will take place tomorrow.

Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today? I’m here with students at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia. And we’ve got students tuning in from all across America, kindergarten through twelfth grade. I’m glad you all could join us today.

I know that for many of you, today is the first day of school. And for those of you in kindergarten, or starting middle or high school, it’s your first day in a new school, so it’s understandable if you’re a little nervous. I imagine there are some seniors out there who are feeling pretty good right now, with just one more year to go. And no matter what grade you’re in, some of you are probably wishing it were still summer, and you could’ve stayed in bed just a little longer this morning.

I know that feeling. When I was young, my family lived in Indonesia for a few years, and my mother didn’t have the money to send me where all the American kids went to school. So she decided to teach me extra lessons herself, Monday through Friday – at 4:30 in the morning.

Now I wasn’t too happy about getting up that early. A lot of times, I’d fall asleep right there at the kitchen table. But whenever I’d complain, my mother would just give me one of those looks and say, "This is no picnic for me either, buster."

So I know some of you are still adjusting to being back at school. But I’m here today because I have something important to discuss with you. I’m here because I want to talk with you about your education and what’s expected of all of you in this new school year.

Now I’ve given a lot of speeches about education. And I’ve talked a lot about responsibility.

I’ve talked about your teachers’ responsibility for inspiring you, and pushing you to learn.

I’ve talked about your parents’ responsibility for making sure you stay on track, and get your homework done, and don’t spend every waking hour in front of the TV or with that Xbox.

I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for setting high standards, supporting teachers and principals, and turning around schools that aren’t working where students aren’t getting the opportunities they deserve.

But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.

And that’s what I want to focus on today: the responsibility each of you has for your education. I want to start with the responsibility you have to yourself.

Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide.

Maybe you could be a good writer – maybe even good enough to write a book or articles in a newspaper – but you might not know it until you write a paper for your English class. Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone or a new medicine or vaccine – but you might not know it until you do a project for your science class. Maybe you could be a mayor or a Senator or a Supreme Court Justice, but you might not know that until you join student government or the debate team.

And no matter what you want to do with your life – I guarantee that you’ll need an education to do it. You want to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a police officer? You want to be a nurse or an architect, a lawyer or a member of our military?
You’re going to need a good education for every single one of those careers. You can’t drop out of school and just drop into a good job. You’ve got to work for it and train for it and learn for it.

And this isn’t just important for your own life and your own future. What you make of your education will decide nothing less than the future of this country. What you’re learning in school today will determine whether we as a nation can meet our greatest challenges in the future.

You’ll need the knowledge and problem-solving skills you learn in science and math to cure diseases like cancer and AIDS, and to develop new energy technologies and protect our environment. You’ll need the insights and critical thinking skills you gain in history and social studies to fight poverty and homelessness, crime and discrimination, and make our nation more fair and more free. You’ll need the creativity and ingenuity you develop in all your classes to build new companies that will create new jobs and boost our economy.

We need every single one of you to develop your talents, skills and intellect so you can help solve our most difficult problems. If you don’t do that – if you quit on school – you’re not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country.

Now I know it’s not always easy to do well in school. I know a lot of you have challenges in your lives right now that can make it hard to focus on your schoolwork.

I get it. I know what that’s like. My father left my family when I was two years old, and I was raised by a single mother who struggled at times to pay the bills and wasn’t always able to give us things the other kids had. There were times when I missed having a father in my life. There were times when I was lonely and felt like I didn’t fit in.

So I wasn’t always as focused as I should have been. I did some things I’m not proud of, and got in more trouble than I should have. And my life could have easily taken a turn for the worse.

But I was fortunate. I got a lot of second chances and had the opportunity to go to college, and law school, and follow my dreams. My wife, our First Lady Michelle Obama, has a similar story. Neither of her parents had gone to college, and they didn’t have much. But they worked hard, and she worked hard, so that she could go to the best schools in this country.

Some of you might not have those advantages. Maybe you don’t have adults in your life who give you the support that you need. Maybe someone in your family has lost their job, and there’s not enough money to go around. Maybe you live in a neighborhood where you don’t feel safe, or have friends who are pressuring you to do things you know aren’t right.

But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for neglecting your homework or having a bad attitude. That’s no excuse for talking back to your teacher, or cutting class, or dropping out of school. That’s no excuse for not trying.

Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.

That’s what young people like you are doing every day, all across America.

Young people like Jazmin Perez, from Roma, Texas. Jazmin didn’t speak English when she first started school. Hardly anyone in her hometown went to college, and neither of her parents had gone either. But she worked hard, earned good grades, got a scholarship to Brown University, and is now in graduate school, studying public health, on her way to being Dr. Jazmin Perez.

I’m thinking about Andoni Schultz, from Los Altos, California, who’s fought brain cancer since he was three. He’s endured all sorts of treatments and surgeries, one of which affected his memory, so it took him much longer – hundreds of extra hours – to do his schoolwork. But he never fell behind, and he’s headed to college this fall.

And then there’s Shantell Steve, from my hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Even when bouncing from foster home to foster home in the toughest neighborhoods, she managed to get a job at a local health center; start a program to keep young people out of gangs; and she’s on track to graduate high school with honors and go on to college.

Jazmin, Andoni and Shantell aren’t any different from any of you. They faced challenges in their lives just like you do. But they refused to give up. They chose to take responsibility for their education and set goals for themselves. And I expect all of you to do the same.

That’s why today, I’m calling on each of you to set your own goals for your education – and to do everything you can to meet them. Your goal can be something as simple as doing all your homework, paying attention in class, or spending time each day reading a book. Maybe you’ll decide to get involved in an extracurricular activity, or volunteer in your community. Maybe you’ll decide to stand up for kids who are being teased or bullied because of who they are or how they look, because you believe, like I do, that all kids deserve a safe environment to study and learn. Maybe you’ll decide to take better care of yourself so you can be more ready to learn. And along those lines, I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well, so we can keep people from getting the flu this fall and winter.

Whatever you resolve to do, I want you to commit to it. I want you to really work at it.

I know that sometimes, you get the sense from TV that you can be rich and successful without any hard work -- that your ticket to success is through rapping or basketball or being a reality TV star, when chances are, you’re not going to be any of those things.

But the truth is, being successful is hard. You won’t love every subject you study. You won’t click with every teacher. Not every homework assignment will seem completely relevant to your life right this minute. And you won’t necessarily succeed at everything the first time you try.

That’s OK. Some of the most successful people in the world are the ones who’ve had the most failures. JK Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was rejected twelve times before it was finally published. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, and he lost hundreds of games and missed thousands of shots during his career. But he once said, "I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."

These people succeeded because they understand that you can’t let your failures define you – you have to let them teach you. You have to let them show you what to do differently next time. If you get in trouble, that doesn’t mean you’re a troublemaker, it means you need to try harder to behave. If you get a bad grade, that doesn’t mean you’re stupid, it just means you need to spend more time studying.

No one’s born being good at things, you become good at things through hard work. You’re not a varsity athlete the first time you play a new sport. You don’t hit every note the first time you sing a song. You’ve got to practice. It’s the same with your schoolwork. You might have to do a math problem a few times before you get it right, or read something a few times before you understand it, or do a few drafts of a paper before it’s good enough to hand in.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don’t know something, and to learn something new. So find an adult you trust – a parent, grandparent or teacher; a coach or counselor – and ask them to help you stay on track to meet your goals.

And even when you’re struggling, even when you’re discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you – don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.

The story of America isn’t about people who quit when things got tough. It’s about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best.

It’s the story of students who sat where you sit 250 years ago, and went on to wage a revolution and found this nation. Students who sat where you sit 75 years ago who overcame a Depression and won a world war; who fought for civil rights and put a man on the moon. Students who sat where you sit 20 years ago who founded Google, Twitter and Facebook and changed the way we communicate with each other.

So today, I want to ask you, what’s your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?

Your families, your teachers, and I are doing everything we can to make sure you have the education you need to answer these questions. I’m working hard to fix up your classrooms and get you the books, equipment and computers you need to learn. But you’ve got to do your part too. So I expect you to get serious this year. I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don’t let us down – don’t let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it.

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

Nothing too controversial in this speech, after all.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

The Conservative View: The Mark Of A Society

The Conservative View of the week, by Adair County Commissioner Russell Turner.
The Conservative View
by Russell Turner

The Mark Of A Society

I once heard a man say that you can tell a lot about the integrity of a person by how he treats someone who has nothing to offer him. It is sad when a society does not take the time to watch out for each other. We need to remember that none of us will ever get to the point where we don’t have to rely upon someone else at some point in our lives. When I was a child in Sunday school I remember the story of the GOOD SAMARITAN, the Samaritan helped a man who had been beaten and robbed even though the beaten man had nothing of value left to repay the act of kindness. Over the past few years I have noticed a problem that appears to be growing; it is the increased frequency of child molestation.

I know that humans for thousands of years have committed crimes against each other but instead of evolving to a point where we are a kinder and gentler species, we seem to be going the other way. We owe our children much; they will be the ones who will be in control when we adults cannot take care of ourselves anymore. At that time we will be relying upon their kindness and compassion. There are a couple of bills that will be introduced in the upcoming session of the Oklahoma State legislature. State Rep. Rex Duncan plans to file legislation that will allow child molesters to face life in prison without parole or even the death penalty. The proposal comes after the recent arrest of Marcus Berry, a two-time convicted sex offender who kidnapped a two-year-old girl from her front yard in Tulsa. Although Berry was convicted in 1986 and again in 1993 when he was sentenced to 30 years in prison, he served less than 13 years of that sentence before being released. Under current law, a child molester can face a sentence of 25 years to life for a first offense. Duncan’s legislation will increase the penalty to include a maximum sentence of life without parole. His legislation will also allow the death penalty to be considered for those convicted of a second offense.

Another State Representative, John Trebilcock will author a bill patterned after a Kansas law where convicted sex offenders could be involuntarily committed to a mental institution after completing their prison sentence. If we Americans don’t start taking the crime of child abuse seriously we will no longer be a great society.

If you wish to contact Russell Turner, or want to subscribe to his email loop, click here.

Friday, September 04, 2009

The Obama Halo Appears Again

The reappearance of the halo of President/Saint Barack Hussein Obama, courtesy of WhiteHouse.gov (also on the White House's Flickr account).

The next picture is also from the same event, his town hall in Belgrade, Montana, on August 14th.

Where is that halo coming from? Is it a spotlight? It doesn't seem like there is a light behind the president from the first picture, or a light hanging from the ceiling. Is it photoshopped?

I remember all the halo pictures during/after the election, and inauguration. But were any of them actually on the White House website?

Sept. 12th Muskogee Tea Party

September 12th TEA PARTY

Are you worried about our nation’s future, with escalating budget deficits and increasingly oppressive national debt?

Come join fellow patriots for a TEA PARTY!!

When: Saturday, September 12th from Noon to 1:00pm.
Where: Muskogee’s Civic Center Plaza (4th & Okmulgee)

Special emphasis on “Health Care Reform”

Learn how government-run healthcare will affect you and your family!

Hear RONALD REAGAN speak on socialized medicine. (Radio address)

Discover what we can do to take our country back!

This is a NON-partisan event open to all patriotic Americans who want to protect their freedoms and futures. Let your voice be heard!

For more information go to: www.teapartymuskogee.com
or contact Jamison Faught at (918) 869-6000.

Congrats to McCarville on 30 Years

The McCarville Report Online, what I consider to be Oklahoma's premier political blog (and conservative, to boot), is celebrating its 30th year in existence today.

Originally in newsletter form as The McCarville Report, TMRO has undergone name and format changes in its thirty-year life.

TMRO is probably the most widely read and most influential political blog in the state. I highly recommend putting TMRO on your must-read blog list.

So here's a big congratulations to Mike McCarville on this milestone, from the Muskogee Politico and his readers!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Benge Won't Run For Treasurer

Speaker of the House Chris Benge announced today that he will not be seeking the Republican nomination for State Treasurer next year, contrary to recent speculation otherwise. His press release is below.
Benge Announces Commitment to Remain House Speaker

OKLAHOMA CITY (Sept. 3, 2009)—Despite speculation that House Speaker Chris Benge may enter the race for State Treasurer, Benge said today he does not intend to seek any other political office at this time.

"Though I am honored by the encouragement of my family, my friends, and many others, I don't plan to be a candidate for State Treasurer or any other office in 2010," said Benge, R-Tulsa. "I have plenty to focus on as Speaker of the House, and I look forward to leading the House in my last year as we work to position Oklahoma to prosper in the future."

Benge was elected House Speaker by unanimous consent in 2008. Since then, Benge has been known as a leader who negotiates fairly and builds consensus among the various factions of House members to accomplish policy objectives.

Benge has enjoyed success in many areas of policy over his legislative career, and looks forward to continuing to work in these areas during his last year in the Legislature.

As both Appropriations and Budget Chairman and then as Speaker, he helped craft the two largest tax cuts in Oklahoma history, and has worked to significantly increase funding for Oklahoma's roads and bridges.

Most recently, Benge received nationwide attention and praise for his plan to rely more on natural gas-powered vehicles as a way to help reduce our country’s dependence on foreign oil.

This year he also worked to secure funding for the Oklahoma State Medical Center, which provided stability to its residency program while also continuing needed indigent care in the Tulsa region.

Benge was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1998, at the age of 36. By the time his current term ends, he will have served the full 12 years in the Legislature allowed under the Oklahoma Constitution.
Benge had been rumored in the past few months to have been considering jumping in the race for either State Treasurer or Governor.

I did notice one thing in his statement, which was released this afternoon. It stated that "
[H]e does not intend to seek any other political office at this time." (emphasis mine)

Does the Speaker still have an eye on higher office? Only time will tell. You can be sure that you can find any new developments right here at Muskogee Politico, once they happen.

Schwartz Drops Out of Lt. Gov Race

State Rep. Colby Schwartz has dropped out of the race for Lieutenant Governor. The Yukon Republican issued the following statement this morning:
"Over the last 90 days it has become obvious to me that the current economic climate has hindered my ability to raise the needed financial resources to effectively fund a statewide race for Lt. Governor. Therefore, I am removing my name from consideration for the Republican nomination for Lt. Governor of Oklahoma."

"During my past campaigns for the Oklahoma House of Representatives, my support has always come from everyday, hard-working Oklahomans. It is these same supporters who have felt the pinch of the economic downturn the hardest; and now have less disposable income to contribute to a political campaign."

"I remain as passionate about Oklahoma and its future as I did when I entered this campaign; but I understand the political reality that an effective statewide bid for public office requires sufficient funds to communicate my message to the entire state."

"I will continue to diligently serve the citizens of the Yukon and Mustang communities, as I have throughout my service to the House of Representatives. This is a humbling honor that has always remained my top priority even during the course of exploring a bid for Lt. Governor."

"My wife Brenda and our family would like to thank everyone who has offered their prayers and thoughts throughout this process. I have made many new friends across this great state and will continue to work with them to move Oklahoma forward."

"As a fourteen-year Republican Party activist, I look forward to fully supporting the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor, as well as the other slate of Republican candidates."
Schwartz was one of three Republican candidates for the office. The remaining candidates are State Sen. Todd Lamb of Edmond, and State Rep. John Wright of Broken Arrow.