Tag Archives: email

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Political Emails: WHY Do People Forward This Stuff?

It’s difficult to be heard above all the “noise” when trying to get out information discovered about what’s happening in government. One big part of “the noise” is a whole lot of email. Obviously, there are many types of email; what I’m referencing here is of a very particular kind. It’s associated with the explosion in political activism that began with the tea party movement in February 2009. While email marketing in the political arena necessitates its own article, for the moment, I’m going to stick only with the messages that individuals send out to their friends, family, acquaintances, and others who they apparently think agree with them politically. Unbelievably in some cases, the recipients are their entire address book.

After two years of running a group and receiving the same kinds of messages over and over and over again, it appears addressing the issue would at minimum, provide me with the opportunity to vent. What I need to vent about, specifically are messages that are absurd, conspiratorial absent any supporting facts, that are ridiculously partisan, and those that actually result in blunting substantive efforts to bring about the very thing the majority of these people signaled in some way or other, that they actually want.

I’m going to be pulling out some of the messages I’ve received and address them, one by one. Perhaps, the exercise will provide more than an outlet for my venting. If nothing else, I’ll have provided myself with some handy cut and paste responses. But maybe, just maybe, one of my dissections of one of these messages will constitute something helpful enough to others that it is truly forward-worthy. Note that I am setting a very high standard for myself here, I don’t hit that forward button very often.

What a convenient segue: the “noise” emails I’m referencing are almost always the results of forwarding. Quite often, the same people who are addicted to the “forward” button in their email program send several such gems per day.

Of course, among the many forwards I receive, I’m used to receiving my share of cute pet and baby pictures with clever sayings (some are political, some not). If there is a cute pet or baby email that has circulated online, I’ve likely seen it twice. Don’t get me wrong, cute pets are fun and I adore cute babies. When I have a bit of spare time, however, I’d rather pet one of my real-live dogs or talk with one of my teenagers (and remember what they looked like as cute babies).

Pet and kid pics aside, I have actually been disturbed by the fact that way too many Americans really will believe almost anything they see on their computer screen, and often follow directions included, if it is speaking to their biases, preconceived notions, general philosophy or coming from someone who says they’re on the same team.

Of course 98% of the email I receive comes from people who are opposed to big government, however they might define it. Beyond that, a good many of these folks have purposefully attended some kind of conference, seminar, or study group about the Constitution and/or limited government and follow news on at least a semi-regular basis.

I now cease to be surprised regarding what is sent, however, and I’m just left wondering what, if anything can be done about it. I think of the time people are putting into reading and sending this stuff and wonder how it might be put to better use.

I have received the email, below, twice in the past few weeks. I would label this one “How to contradict your own stated philosophy and totally obscure your own point”. Honestly, on this one, I’ve wondered if some big-government liberal type put this one together and sent it to a bunch of tea partiers to see how many would take the bait…

“We’re BROKE AMERICAN’S!!

We’re “broke” & can’t help our own Seniors, Veterans, Orphans,Homeless etc………..

In the last months we have provided aid to Haiti , Chile , and Turkey .

Our retired seniors living on a ‘fixed income’ receive no aid or get any breaks while our government and religious organizations pour Hundreds of Millions of $$$$$’s and Tons of Food into Foreign Countries!

We have hundreds of adoptable children who are shoved aside to make room for the adoption of foreign orphans.

USA, a country where we have homeless without shelter, children going to bed hungry, elderly going without ‘needed’ meds, and mentally ill without treatment – etc,etc…

YET……………….

They give money to 150 nations in the world and to the United Nations.

Imagine if the *GOVERNMENT* gave ‘us’ the same support they give to other countries.

Sad isn’t it?

99% of people won’t have the guts to forward this.

I Just Did”

Wow! Where DO I start?

We’re BROKE AMERICAN’S!!

Ok – fair enough. With a $14 trillion stated deficit and 100+ trillion in unfunded obligations, this is indeed, accurate. (I am trying to ignore the typo that persisted through multiple forwards. I said I was trying.)

We’re “broke” & can’t help our own Seniors, Veterans, Orphans,Homeless etc………..

Excuse me?

We don’t help our Seniors?

It’s called Social Security and Medicare, including prescription drug coverage. That $100+ trillion in unfunded obligations includes these programs. Are they good programs? No. Would a lot of seniors have more money now if they had invested in their own retirement? Yes.

Veterans

We could do a much better job with their medical care. And they don’t get paid nearly enough for what they do, particularly if they serve in combat. But, besides that, there are many benefits provided. Some of them, like the mortgage benefit, can literally last a lifetime.  There are also a lot of programs aimed at doing things for soldiers and families through many, many private groups.

Orphans

I thought there was a shortage of adoptable babies. Yes, we do have a lot of children in foster care, which is a real can of worms that I’m not going to get into right now. I don’t see a lot of orphans roaming the streets of America, however.

Homeless

Why do we have homeless? While I don’t agree with a good amount of the spin in this Wikipedia article, it does provide some good background regarding the history of homelessness in America. There was a marked uptick in the number of homeless people following policy changes regarding how mentally ill individuals were handled and treated, and of course, there is a correlation between substance abuse and homelessness. Aren’t there myriad efforts to help the homeless, both public and private? (Here’s just one example from my local newspaper.)

In the last months we have provided aid to Haiti , Chile , and Turkey .

I have a sneaking suspicion, this might be the actual point of the email, but it is oh-so-difficult-to-determine. If it is, WHERE IS the supporting information?

Our retired seniors living on a ‘fixed income’ receive no aid or get any breaks while our government and religious organizations pour Hundreds of Millions of $$$$$’s and Tons of Food into Foreign Countries!

Again…seniors? No aid? Breaks?…ever heard of senior discounts? Again, if too much foreign aid by government is the point, why tear down religious organizations for doing it? Don’t we want to promote PRIVATE charity? Is the point of this email about how government spends its money or how money is spent in general? I can’t quite figure this out, either.

We have hundreds of adoptable children who are shoved aside to make room for the adoption of foreign orphans.

Actually, I believe there are many thousands of adoptable children, but there are not as many infants as parents who wish to adopt them.  It turns out that the number of foreign adoptions has drastically dropped due to an international agreement in 2008. The largest number of adoptable children are in the foster care system, and is that not caused by a variety of social factors? Is the lack of adoption of these children caused by the failure of government intervention? It’s a challenge to adopt older children, so is it any wonder they are harder to place?

USA, a country where we have homeless without shelter, children going to bed hungry, elderly going without ‘needed’ meds, and mentally ill without treatment – etc,etc…

Is it lack of government programs that has caused ANY of these problems? Lack of concern?

ARE the mentally ill going without treatment?

WHERE are the statistics to back up any of this?

Hungry children? Ever heard of the reduced-price and free breakfast and lunch programs delivered at the schools (not to mention that some schools now serve dinner)? In addition to school lunches, there is food stamps and WIC. Beyond that, there is a program that sends backpacks of food home on weekends that run by local food banks and from what I can discover, is funded locally with private dollars. There is even a video about this program.

YET……………….

They give money to 150 nations in the world and to the United Nations.

Too much foreign aid and membership in the United Nations has been poor policy, it’s true. But once again, was THIS email the way to make the point?

Imagine if the *GOVERNMENT* gave ‘us’ the same support they give to other countries.

I don’t want the government to give “us” anything; through some of the information I’ve provided, it seems fairly clear that we don’t have to “imagine” government giving to “us” at all. It’s giving, giving, giving, and giving. And that brings me to another point; the government does not just “give”. In order to give, it has to take from someone else. All of this giving, however is not  government’s job. For a refresher, please see Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution.

Sad isn’t it?

Yes, but not for the reason the author or forwarder thinks.

99% of people won’t have the guts to forward this.

This is not a question of guts, it’s a question of good sense.

I Just Did”

Yes! I’m well aware…otherwise…how could I have received it?

On the next round, I’m going to tackle my all-time favorite…the petition appeal along the lines of… “Go sign this petition now! The country depends upon it!”

speeding-train-lg-300x234

*ACTION ALERT!* Stop These Train Wrecks! Call Congress Today!

speeding-train-lgFaster than a locomotive!
Faster than a speeding bullet!
It’s a bird, it’s a train…
No, it’s….

CONGRESS!

Congress is moving through bills and hearings at the speed of light. Focusing on one issue alone is a luxury we simply cannot afford.

Things are moving too fast, bills are too long, too many traditions and even rules are not being followed, and too many diversions are being created to either expect accurate projections can be made or statements relied upon as to when any particular bill will actually come up for a vote.

Following the wisdom of “those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it”, we must learn that we should act as if these issues are imminent.

If you followed events closely leading up to the House of Represenatives’ vote on HR 2454 aka Cap & Trade, you likely noticed:

  • The prevailing wisdom of pundits, think tanks, and many on Capitol Hill was “Cap & Trade is in trouble”
  • Most people following issues in the Federal government and politics in general were focused on the outrageous actions of ABC News in regards to President Obama’s Health Care Town Hall when the announcement was made that Cap & Trade would be up for a vote on the House floor.
  • The House voted on HR 2454 late on a Friday afternoon, the slowest news day of the week.
  • The media opted to cover the death of pop star Michael Jackson rather than the passage of the Cap & Trade bill in the House.
  • Over 300 pages were added in the middle of the night and no complete copy was available at the time of the vote

There are several issues that require our attention NOW and going forward until they are DEFEATED (or passed).

fax_machineACTIONS WE ALL NEED TO TAKE:

  • Maintain pressure on US Senate and House representatives (contact them)
  • On particular issues, contact your Governor, State legislators, county, and city representatives.
  • Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper
  • Forward this message to everyone in your contacts list

Tips to be most effective:

CONTACTING CONGRESS:

  1. Call the office for your Senator or House reps. where your representatives are currently, right now that is D.C., but verify it on the phone call
  2. Ask to speak directly with your Senator or Congressman
  3. Be sure to give your zip code so they know you are a constituent
  4. Be polite, but firm
  5. The next best method to a phone call is a fax, the least, email

WHY CONTACT YOUR STATE & LOCAL REPRESENTATIVES?

bill of rights

  • Several bills currently moving through Congress, if passed, seriously encroach on states’ rights, and in turn will put a lot of pressure on county and city governments.
  • It is essential that our state governments assert their sovereign rights
  • Although State legislatures are not currently in session this is the period during which legislators have the time to consider issues that need attention, or bills they will sponsor.

__________________________________________________________

THE ISSUES & BILLS:

S. 909 Matthew Shepherd Hate Crimes Bill

Purpose: Increases penalties for certain crimes committed against certain people, particularly based on sexual orientation

Position: OPPOSE

Reasons:

  • Should not be snuck into a Defense spending bill
  • Endangers freedom of speech and religion
  • Presents problems with double jeapordy
  • Violates the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment by singling out certain groups of citizens to the exclusion of others

Status:

Included as an amendment to a Defense Spending Bill (S. 1390) late last week.

Links:

Text of the original S. 909 bill on THOMAS

Politico.com Story Regarding the Bill Nearing passage

Washington Times: F-22 Votes Stalls in Hate Crime Redux

Text of Defense Appropriations Bill S. 1391 on THOMAS

_______________________________________________________

Nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the United States Supreme Court

Position: Senate member should oppose her nomination, vocally.

Reasons:

Sotomayor has made public statements and issued rulings that indicate:

  • Lack of respect for the right to bear arms
  • Racial and gender bias
  • Lack of respect for property rights
  • Has indicated “empathy” is a higher priority than following the law

Further:

  • Made a statement that appellate court judges make law
  • Her testimony last week has troubling contradictions in contrast to her writings and the facts of her life.
  • During hear testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, she showed a surprising lack of technical legal knowledge during some questioning, particularly in an interchange with Senator Hatch.
  • Has had a high rate of judicial error – 40%+ (her rulings were overturned)
  • Supports abortion through her statement that Roe v. Wade is settled law

Principles:

  • We should oppose those who are not clearly strict constructionists
  • Supporters of the Constitution in the Senate need to start showing themselves
  • Members of the Senate need to put the President on notice regarding this and future nominees to the Court

Status:

Conclusion of the hearings process, no clear date available regarding full Senate floor vote

Links:

Gun Owners of America has been closely watching and researching this nominee, providing very good general information (beyond the Second Amendment) on their site.

GOA’s Executive Director Larry Pratt, was a guest on a special episode of the Blog Talk Radio show The Constitutional Liberty Coalition Gets Grizzly on Thursday, July 16 to discuss the Sotomayor nomination.  Larry gave a good deal of detailed information about Sotomayor and why her nomination should be opposed. You can listen by clicking here.

Former Supreme Court Nominee Robert Bork made statements regarding Sotomayor and recent history on the confirmation process on Newsmaxx, Tuesday.

Wall Street Journal article on how little information was gleaned from Sotomayor’s testimony.

___________________________________________________

“Health Care Reform” / Socialized Medicine

Several versions exist Was H.R. 676 now, H.R. 3200 (see summary article, linked)

Stated Purpose: To make affordable health care available to all

Position: OPPOSE

Reasons:

Puts government in charge of health care decisions

Will implement rationing, meaning government will ultimately decide who suffers or not, who lives or dies

Will kill private health insurance

Will drive talent and innovation out of the health care industry, leading to a reduced quality of care

Will kill small businesses, particularly if certain versions pass

Anyone who states this will not lead to a single payer only (government!) is outright lying. There is ample evidence that supporters want government to be totally in charge of health care.

Status:

Unclear at this time. There are mixed messages from the White House and Congress. The President seemed to be continuing to push Congress to pass as quickly as possible despite the recent CBO report. Again, since there has been much “ducking and weaving” that has occurred, we must not let up on our opposition.

Links:

Text of H.R. 3200 on THOMAS

Forbes: A Bad Day for Obamacare?

Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Report on cost of HR 3200

Forbes: Obamacare: The Cost Cutting Delusion

Wal-Mart supports socialized medicine

White House Less Firm on Date for Health Care Bill

Many Governors Oppose Health Care Bill: Label As Unfunded Mandate

_____________________________________________________

The PASS Act H.R. 1291

Stated Purpose: To better protect the security, confidentiality, and integrity of personally identifiable information collected by States when issuing driver’s licenses and identification documents, and for other purposes.

Position: OPPOSE

Reasons:

  • This is yet another stealth bill, being “sold” as an improvement to “Real ID”, which has been very controversial
  • Passage of this bill means a NATIONAL Identity Card
  • Contains Biometric data like facial recognition technology
  • Real ID has always been sold as a way to “make us safer”
  • Many states have outright refused to comply, that is the reason for this latest maneuver, “to improve privacy”

Status: Currently in committee in the Senate; the next opportunity for revisions is July 29.

Links:

Text of HR 1291

Stop Real ID Coalition has a great deal of detailed information on this issue and provides frequent status reports.

OpEd News Article on HR 1291

____________________________________________________

HR 2454 (2998) American Clean Energy and Security Act – Cap & Trade

Stated purpose: Reduce carbon emissions, achieve energy independence

Position: Oppose

Reasons:

Basic premise is entirely flawed, based on faulty / controversial science

Is about control, not “protecting the environment”

Violates the Tenth and Fourth Amendments in many respects through encroachment on states’ rights and required inspections

Will devastate America’s economy through regulations and taxes imposed on businesses, causing increased costs for energy

Will touch most aspects of our daily lives from the cars we drive to the appliances in our homes

Status:

Passed by the House of Representatives on June 26, 2009

Currently in the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works (EPW); Committee Chair Barb Boxer (D-CA) released a statement last week that this bill will not come up for a vote until after Congress’ August Recess

*Despite Sen. Boxer’s statement, it is important to stay on this issue!*

written jointly by Shelli Dawdy and Sandra Crosnoe

@Stubborn_Facts  @scrosnoe