++ AGENDA FOR THIS WEEK’S MEETING
++ JOHN WRIGHT ENDORSED FOR LT. GOVERNOR
++ LIBERALS PIN REPUBLICANS IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE
++ WELCOME TO OCPAC AND MEMBERSHIP UP-DATE
++ AGENDA FOR THIS WEEK’S MEETING
Our 12 noon luncheon for Wednesday April 28th will be held at Italiano’s restaurant, 4801 North Lincoln in OKC. Our speaker this week will be Mr. John Doak from Tulsa. Mr. Doak is the only Republican to announce so far for the State Insurance Commission position. One of the most important qualifications for that position is moral character and integrity as the commissioner has the ability to increase insurance rates when requested by insurance companies. Another issue will be his position on Christian groups such as Christian Medi-Share.
These are groups of free will association who make a commitment to pay each others catastrophic health expenses but are not an insurance company. Any of our members present who had their dues paid as of April14th will be given a ballot to vote to endorse Mr. Doak or make no endorsement.
+ OKC AREA - MONDAY EVENING - Oklahomans for Sovereignty and Free
Enterprise (OK-SAFE) will host Randal O’Toole, Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute. The location will be the Character Training Center, 520 West Main in downtown OKC. The time will be from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., there is no cost to attend. Mr. O’Toole is the author of: BEST- LAID PLANS, HOW GOVERNMENT PLANNING HARMS YOUR QUALITY OF LIFE, YOUR POCKETBOOK, & FUTURE, as well as a second book, GRIDLOCK - WHY WE’RE STUCK IN TRAFFIC AND WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT. The second book discusses how government attempts to do long-range, comprehensive planning inevitably does more harm than good by choking American cities with congestion, making housing markets more unaffordable, and sending the cost of government infrastructure skyrocketing.
Did you see the NEWS 9 story recently as well as articles in various papers about the millions of dollars of stimulus money being spent on green project experiments such a planter boxes on roof tops? That whole movement emanates out of the United Nations and is known as “sustainability”. MAPS 3, its Light Rail System and the move to a “New Urbanism” are all part of a “Central Planner’s” dream. Mr. O’Toole will present a side of the story that I predict you will never hear about in the Oklahoman or from Mayor Mick and the rest of the central planners.
+ EDMOND - 5 MONDAYS IN MAY - The Oklahoma Council of Public
Affairs (OCPA) is hosting their Spring Lecture Series starting, Monday evening May 3rd and running each Monday evening through the end of May. Sessions will begin at 6:00 p.m. in the Hardeman Auditorium on the Campus of Oklahoma Christian University, 2501 Memorial Road (about half way between I-35 and the Broadway Extension).
Giving the lectures will be OU history professor Dr. J. Rufus Fears.
Dr. Fears, a conservative professor and compelling speaker, has been selected by the students as professor of the year on 3 different occasions. His lecture series is titled: “The Founders’ Legacy of Freedom”. There is no cost to attend and this will be an excellent opportunity to increase your understanding of the ideas of our Founding Fathers. The May 3rd session is titled: “The Declaration of Independence and its meaning today”.
++ JOHN WRIGHT ENDORSED FOR LT. GOVERNOR
This past Wednesday, our dues paying members voted to endorse State Representative John Wright over State Senator Todd Lamb in the closest race so far this year. There were a large number of “no endorsement”
votes which caused our first run-off vote of the year. Some vote to make no endorsement because there isn’t that much difference between the candidates, couldn’t tell who was the best or perhaps they don’t like any of the candidates. Regardless of the reason, Representative Wright was chosen in a close run-off race. There wasn’t that much difference between them on their perspectives for the job.
I believe John Wright to be the more conservative candidate, but Senator Lamb certainly displays the persona of a salesman to promote the State of Oklahoma which is a major function for the Lt. Governor position. Both are good communicators, John’s style is thorough and methodical, while Todd’s style is forceful and full of charisma. While I believe either of them will make a good Lt. Governor, our members did select John Wright who now joins these other candidates endorsed by OCPAC. Randy Brogdon for Governor, Mark Costello for Labor Commissioner, Nathan Dahm for 1st District Congress, R.J. Harris for 4th District Congress and Kevin Calvey for 5th District Congress.
Congratulations to all of these fine candidates.
++ LIBERALS PIN REPUBLICANS IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE
I watched with amazement over the last few day as to how fast the liberals, with the aid of the main stream press, had the Republicans on their backs, yelling “calf rope” over the issue of militias.
Militias pre-date our nation and are the reason we don’t sip tea out of our saucers at 2 in the afternoon with our little pinkie’s extended while we chat with one another using a funny sounding form of proper English. Militias, regardless of how you want to define them, have been, are, and should continue to be an important part of the American experiment. Our founding fathers who put their names, their fortunes and their sacred honor on the line to obtain our liberty would be ashamed of us today as we slither under the rocks rather than be associated with the term “militia”.
Though I don’t use the militia word often, I gladly use the word when necessary, a word which is found in our U.S. Constitution. Let me suggest 4 definitions of Militias, all of which I support. Our founding fathers were very leery of a standing army (they supported a standing navy). But, they were also aware of the need to be able to quickly assemble forces for protection. Therefore, they called for a well regulated militia which could be federalized if the need arose.
Many states, including Oklahoma provide for such a militia which we will call the National Guard. Second, Oklahoma statutes also call for a state militia which we call the Oklahoma State Guard. This militia should be under the control of the Governor and or the state Adjutant General. A third realm of militias I would like to see and don’t believe is provided for by the state, would be a militia under the authority of the County Sheriff. The fourth form is an “unorganized militia” which is currently provided for in state statutes, but all of a sudden has become very controversial.
Just a little recent history, when Bill Clinton was President, the liberals were successful in passing the Brady Law, which was a significant step toward collecting fire-arms from the citizens of the U.S. The bill even had provision to force county sheriffs to comply with the law or face criminal prosecution.
The feds didn’t take the next step to start rounding up fire arms, I believe because of 2 reasons. First, there were a group of about 30 Democrats in the House they couldn’t count on to pass such radical and severe legislation. Second, unauthorized militias were popping up all over the country, including several here in Oklahoma. I believe there were hundreds of thousands, perhaps several million Americans who were willing to “DEFEND” themselves and their right to bear arms should federal agents begin to round up firearms. I believe the Clinton administration counted the cost to take the next step and backed down.
In other words, the proliferation of militias served as a kind of saber rattling to back the feds off.
During that time we had two different meetings at OCPAC where leaders of those groups spoke. They were not recruitment meetings, but rather for the purpose of information. OCPAC actually believes in and practices FREE SPEECH whether we agree or disagree with or speaker or their agenda.
Even as recent as a year ago, talk of a militia would have been no big deal or only slightly controversial. I well remember one Wednesday morning last Summer just before our meeting, while listening to talk radio, information was made public that the State of Missouri had issued a warning that people who were concerned about the Constitution, the Second Amendment, were pro-life, home schooled their children, voted for Ron Paul or Chuck Baldwin for President, that those kind of people were considered to be potential domestic terrorists.
Folks, you better wake up, ideas have consequences and those proclamations were very dangerous, even though officials in Missouri later backed off under a barrage of criticism. Two hours after hearing the information I was standing before the members of OCPAC relaying such information when I suggested it was time to again begin forming militias. I suggested two key components to the formation of a militia. One, no person should be allowed to join who was a white supremacists and second, no one should be allowed to be a member who was not a registered voter and had not voted in at least one of the past two general elections.
Standing there taking notes was the Oklahoman reporter Michael McNutt.
If my memory serves me correctly, the article in the Oklahoman the next day didn’t have a word about my suggestions that it was time to begin forming militias. So what is the big deal? Real simple, in early March of this year the feds moved to arrest about 10 people in Michigan and Indiana for allegedly being members of the Hutaree militia in Michigan. I believe they were “charged” (remember, we are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty) with conspiracy to commit sedition and plans to kill members of law enforcement.
I was suspicious of the validity of the charges from the moment I heard them. However, if they are really bad guys plotting to “INITIATE” the killing of law enforcement personal, then they should be taken off the streets. According to a Wall Street Journal article, it was suggested that the feds had an insider in the group. The question is, was the insider an “informant” (gathering and relaying
information) or an “agent provocateur” (someone who gains trust then leads a group into trouble by incremental suggestions toward crime and evil). If the latter, then that is the definition of “entrapment” and may put a case against the accused in jeopardy.
Regardless, the feds and the liberal media have now found a word “militia” which has just attained the status of radio active. All of a sudden, the image in the minds of most Americans regarding militias is that of crazies playing soldier, and making plans to kill cops and attack the federal government. Adolph Hitler’s minister of propaganda and disinformation, Gerbils, would have been proud and amazed at such a coup.
Now fast forward from March when that occurred to the tea parties. For a year now the liberal leftists, aided by their allies in the liberal main stream media, have been throwing a variety of mud balls at those attending tea parties to see if anything sticks. Now, with a newly demonized word, “militias”, the object was to suggest those attending tea parties were similar to the dangerous crazies in Michigan.
Enter, an Associated Press reporter. The reporter asked Senator Brogdon if he could interview him for a story on tea parties.
According to Senator Brogdon, question after question kept referring to militias. Brogdon told him several times he had no plans to start or support a militia. However, if a reporter keeps re-framing a question he might finally get a sound bite that could be used to write an inflammatory story. Maybe a question like, I know you aren’t supporting a militia, but if we did have one and had a severe ice storm or riots in the streets, then couldn’t a militia be helpful in those kinds of situations? Of course the obvious answer might be, yes, a militia would be a good deal in such a situation. Never mind you had just said on numerous times you weren’t trying to organize a militia.
Senator Brogdon has called on the AP reporter to release the full interview so his comments can be made known in their proper context.
Don’t hold your breath.
It was even worse for Representative Charles Key, the same reporter came by for an interview and wrote an article which, according to Charles Key, was horribly wrong. The next day after the story ran the same reporter came by Representative Key’s office and apologized with a statement that sometimes when a story is edited it makes some mistakes. They did another interview which was taped and Representative Key thought there would be an accurate retraction.
There wasn’t and now Representative Key is calling for the taped interview to be made public or for the reporter to be fired. Again, don’t hold your breath.
Now, to my point as to how the Republicans were pinned to the mat in record time. Right after the story broke, Republican party Chair, Gary Jones must have put on some depends before he went before the press to throw Representative Key under the bus. Calling for him to leave the Republican party and suggesting anyone affiliated with militias weren’t welcome in the Republican party. Hum, I don’t remember that being a part of our platform or in our party rules.
Jones has a brand to protect, but his emotional knee jerk reaction played right into the hands of the liberals wanting to demonize the tea party folks.
Senator Steve Russell also played into their hands. Senator Russell is a good Senator and is going to be an even better Senator with time, but he got snookered in this case. I agree that any plans to get aggressive and initiate an action against the federal government would be foolish.
However, militias, especially the unorganized types or those controlled by a county sheriff should only be defensive. The definitive issue of concern would be the round-up of citizen’s firearms. That was also the issue in 1775 when the British troops left Boston and marched to Concord to capture a stash of arms from the colonists.
Our members should remember the DVD we played last summer titled:
INNOSENCE BETRAYED by Aaron Zelman, founder of Jews for the Preservation of firearms. The point of the documentary was that in the
8 major genocides of the past century, two actions occurred before each genocide. First it was gun registration, then second it was gun confiscation. Americans must never never never allow the government to confiscate our fire arms. Throughout history, more people have been killed by their own governments than have died fighting a foreign enemy as a soldier for their own country.
Another Republican playing into the hands of the liberals was state Labor Commission candidate Jason Reese. Even though he claimed that his press release was not related to his campaign, it appeared to be an attempt to get some kind of support for his failing candidacy which is going no-where fast. Reese is a moderate Republican who from the earliest of days was a huge cheer leader for John McCain for President. Probably because McCain was such an advocate for amnesty for illegal aliens. Reese was a huge opponent of HB 1804, the legislation to deal with illegal aliens on a state level brought about by the federal government’s refusal to secure our borders.
However, the most disappointing action of all came last Thursday when the House Republicans voted to amend SB 2018 on a vote of 98 to 1. Wes Hillard (D-Sulpher) successfully stopped legislation to protect pastors and Christians from being persecuted by hate crimes legislation. He did so by abandoning a deal made with Judiciary Chairman Rex Duncan to allow the bill to be heard in committee when he turned the authorship of the legislation over to Representative Mike Shelton (D-OKC). Shelton is a huge proponent of hate crimes legislation.
Shelton, deserves the title, King of the Republicans as he out maneuvered them Thursday with an amendment making it illegal to join an unauthorized militia or the Ku Klux Klan. The original bill actually increased the penalty for aiding or soliciting gang membership and created a new law against committing an offense as a condition for gang membership.
What I am about to say is going to be difficult for some to swallow. I think it is tragic that there has been such a break-down in families and values in our culture that we have violent gangs. I also have no use for the KKK. However, until a crime is committed by a gang member or a KKK member, I don’t see how any thinking person who is aware of the double edged sword effect of preventive legislation could make a law against free will association in an organization. If we start down that road, where does it end? All you have to do is watch a few Glen Beck shows and I could think of any number of organizations on the left that I would want to criminalize. On the flip side, liberals could probably think of any number of conservative organizations they would like to criminalize, especially militias, then tea party gatherings and don’t forget groups like OCPAC and the various Republican clubs and so on.
Representative Shelton and his buddy Jason Reese both alluded to Timothy McVeigh as the example of a militia member. If my memory serves me correctly McVeigh may have been a member of a militia in Ohio, but if so, he had been kicked out for some reason or another.
Certainly what he did in blowing up the Murah building was not an operation of a militia. People make false statements like that and then others just run with them as if they are the truth, when in fact they are not. King Shelton must be feeling like a mighty important man as he has the Republicans right in the palm of his hand. That legislation really needs to be killed when it goes back to the Senate, other than the part with punishment for committing some kind of a crime as a requirement to join a gang.
Bottom line, my suggestions that we need to form militias were just that, a suggestion. I have not made an attempt to make that happen.
Because of my age and lack of military experience (1 year of ROTC in
college) I would probably not join a militia if one or more were started, though I would be supportive of them if they were worthy. I am in communication with a variety of lawmakers in both houses and I have not heard a word about a move to create militias before all this noise started. I am not a leader in any of the tea party organizations, though I know many of the leaders. I can say I have not heard of efforts for the tea parties to create militias. Four to six weeks ago, I was interviewed by the same AP reporter and don’t remember any questions about the formation of militias, which makes me think he is receiving pressure from above to make a story happen.
Above all else, we as people should not be so knee-jerk quick to support or oppose something when we first hear it, but rather be thinking people. Not jerked around by the liberal press who is continually shaping public opinion and setting the agenda for Republicans rather than just reporting the news.
++ WELCOME TO OCPAC AND MEMBERSHIP UP-DATE
I have finally entered several hundred names acquired at the tea parties on April 14th and 15th. Just a brief bit of information about us. Sometime in 1991 Tim Green and I started having lunch together on Wednesdays. Eventually others began to join us and our numbers began to grow. We eventually became a debating society, having a lot of fun talking about issues and learning how to defend positions as well as challenge one another without being offensive.
About 12 years ago, I proposed that debating societies have a lot of fun but accomplish little to nothing. We agreed to form a Political Action Committee with the following mission statement: “To promote and support constitutionalists in government who oppose expansive government while at the same time promote liberty, free market economics and Judeo-Christian values. Over the past 19 years we have missed meeting only one Wednesday.
During the past 5 election cycles we have raised about $100,000 dollars through the dues paid by our members with the basic membership being $50 and two higher levels of membership at $180 or $360 for a calendar year. During the past 5 election cycles we have contributed to 72 candidates for office and 36 of them have been elected. Based on their scores in the Oklahoma Constitution Newspaper’s Conservative Index, they tend to be the most conservative lawmakers in the state.
We now have around 3,500 people who receive this e-mail directly, a following on the OCPAC blog and many people who have the e-mail forwarded to them by friends. To the 300 or so new folks who signed up at the tea parties, welcome to the e-mail list and please come to a luncheon any time you have an opportunity.
For those who have been receiving our e-mails for some time now and know what OCPAC stands for, I want to invite you to join our organization if you have not done so as yet. We are now past 200 dues paying members as the close of April approaches. Our all time record for membership was last year at 217 dues paying members and I fully expect to exceed that this year. We are an all volunteer organization with no one receiving any salary for their efforts. If you want to see Oklahoma become a more conservative state, please consider joining us.
Currently we have some donors agreeing to contribute $50 for everyone joining through the 15th of May (I just acquired an additional donor to put up another $1,000 as we went past our original $1300 for 26 new members). Instructions to join will follow my sign off.
I look forward to seeing everyone this Wednesday.