Winning: The Individual Mandate Conversation

This week, taking a cue from arguments before the Supreme Court, conservatives (finally) got the message right on Obamacare. Rather than accepting a flawed premise or emotional appeals (“But people are dying!”) as a basis for discussion, we got right down to the message that needs to be shouted from the rooftops: The government can’t force every man, woman, and child in the country to purchase something!

Paul Clement, the attorney representing the 26 states in opposition to the bill, successfully reframed questioning from the Court’s more liberal justices to stay on point:

“MR. CLEMENT: The question that’s a proper question for this Court, though, is whether or not, for the first time in our history, Congress also has the power to compel people into commerce…”

Another point that was made during the oral arguments was echoed by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott on Huckabee:

“If this law is upheld, there won’t be a dividing line that will limit Congress’ power going forward. If they can make you buy healthcare insurance, they can make you buy water, food, clothing, shelter, anything…” (Forward to about 3:30 on the video linked below.)

Watch the video: video.foxnews.com

Speaker of the House John Boehner saw how effective this messaging was and dove in:

“When Democrats forced their government takeover of health care into law, it was the first time in American history that Congress had passed a law mandating that you buy something simply because you’re breathing. If the federal government thinks it can get away with this kind of power grab, it will think it can do almost anything.”

Even with all the impassioned rhetoric from celebrities and lefty pundits predicting dire consequences (death! bankruptcy!) if this bill isn’t upheld and followed through on, the conservative message appealing to Americans’ innate sense of independence is resonating: Only 34 percent of Americans recently surveyed had a favorable view of Obamacare, and 51 percent had an unfavorable view.

I am encouraged that this branding WIN is being heard from the top of the “establishment” down to the regular people on Twitter. Hopefully success breeds more success in this department!

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Get The Government Out of It!

As a conservative/libertarian (gosh I hate labels) I am constantly looking for ways to get the government out of our business.  And, I believe that the gay marriage issue has been a wedge that keeps people that are otherwise conservative (or fiscally conservative) out of the conservative movement.  They feel that a fundamental element of who they are is completely rejected by the movement.

So, I believe it’s imperative that conservatives find a way to deal with this issue.  And I think I’ve found a solution…

Get the government completely out of marriage.  EVERYONE gets a civil union.  And then you can have your own ceremony, officiated by your rabbi, bishop, priest, kaballah, spiritual advisor – whatever tickles your fancy.

This solution really separates out the legal and religious ends of marriage – not to mention the business and romantic ends.

Think of it as the spousal unit being a corporation.  Just have the couple download a form, sign, date, Notarize, and send in to the register of deeds in the appropriate county.  Boom.  You’re legally a spousal unit.  You get the tax benefits, inheritance rights, everything – whether your union is heterosexual or same sex.  You want to have a religious ceremony? Fine, you’re on your own.  It’s a totally separate entity.

One of the beauties of this is it doesn’t create any new paperwork – couples already have to apply for a marriage license. Instead of doing that, they just file the “incorporation” documents.  And if they’re really ambitious, they can specify asset distribution and child custody provisions in the event of a dissolution of the union.  (Maybe that’d prevent some lawsuits? Ah, who am I kidding?!)

One of the main arguments many social conservatives have against the government recognizing same-sex marriage is that churches could be forced to marry same-sex couples even though it goes against the tenets of the church or be sued for bias.  This solution prevents that because it sets “marriage” as a purely religious ceremony with no ties to the government, so the government cannot regulate it.

What do you think?

I Love Being a Woman

Today I am so grateful that I am a woman who was born in the United States at the time I was born. I have the opportunity to freely express myself as a woman (and own the consequences).  In the coming weeks I am going to be highlighting the ways that the Feminist/ERA movement has harmed my generation, but today I’m about gratitude.

Gratitude that because I am a woman I can be a mom.  I loved the feeling of growing a human being inside my body, feeling the child kick and move and sit on my ribs. I loved knowing this person before birth – feeling a connection that only intensified in that second they were placed on my belly after birth. I love that as a woman my body is soft and snuggly – not manly – to provide a comforting hug.

I love creating a peaceful home for my boys.  Call me crazy, but most of the time I even love the laundry and cooking and cleaning that goes with it.  It’s how I show my love.  I love that the people I have the most fun with are the ones that I gave birth to.  I love that as they grow up, when something bad or good or funny happens they want to tell ME.

I love that as a woman I have a quiet strength – I don’t have to stomp and scream to make a point.  A confident woman can assess a situation and quietly affect change. I enjoy that mystical thing called woman’s intuition.  I am concerned with feelings and flowers and love jewelry and high heels. I like pretty dresses and handbags and everything girly.

I also have a career, pay my own bills – don’t rely on a man for anything material at all. Someday I would love to be in a relationship where we are equals, with a man who appreciates and celebrates my femininity.  Until then, I’m secure and happy with myself as a woman and don’t look to a man to give me worth.

So, in honor of International Women’s Day I say thank you to God for letting me be born in a time and place where my confident voice would not get me killed.  Thank You for allowing me to be a mother – a way to fully express myself as a woman and influence the next generation.

The Steve Jobs of the Conservative Movement

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 “I love my job. I love fighting for what I believe in. I love having fun while doing it. I love reporting stories that the Complex refuses to report. I love fighting back, I love finding allies, and–famously–I enjoy making enemies.” – Andrew Breitbart

The first (and only) time I saw Andrew Breitbart in person, I was sitting in the lobby bar at this year’s CPAC, and the first thing I noticed from across the room was his hair.  It reminded me of Einstein – a fitting head of hair for a crazy genius.

There’s a more modern icon who Breitbart is similar to – Steve Jobs.  Both were adopted, and grew up rebelling against the status quo.

Steve Jobs changed the way the world communicates and processes information. Andrew Breitbart changed the way information is disseminated to the public – and changed WHAT information can be disseminated to the public.

Steve Jobs refused to accept “you can’t do that” or “that’s impossible.”  Andrew Breitbart refused to accept lies, corruption, and media gatekeepers. He refused to accept the premise of liberal conclusions, challenging the paradigm before starting the debate.

Steve Jobs took business risks.  Andrew Breitbart published risky stories that other outlets wouldn’t go near. He wasn’t afraid of any personal repercussions.

Steve Jobs did away with traditional business culture. Andrew Breitbart was instrumental in opening the conservative movement to people outside the WASP Country Club caste. With his irreverent manner and non-traditional methods, he broke down the media gatekeeper barriers so hypocrisy, corruption, and lies could be revealed.

The most important distinction between the two will be their legacy.  As inspirational as Steve Jobs was, his main accomplishments occurred during his time on Earth. Breitbart’s accomplishments in life will be amplified by the accomplishments of the thousands or tens of thousands of people who have been inspired to action by him – and who will carry out his mission of unmasking the lies and hypocrisy of the establishment.

Obviously the talented and fired up stable of journalists and writers who were already affiliated with Breitbart sites will continue the battle.  But there’s also a growing army of young conservative bloggers and activists, many of whom don’t fit the traditional mold of staid social conservatism, who are picking up the torch. @OHConservatism. @FingersMalloy. @Brodigan. @MisfitPolitics @hipstervative @Cnservativepunk. @katearthsis. @rachelveronica. @AiPolitics. @anthropocon. @SisterToldjah. Mom-types like @SmoosieQ @politicsofamy @Mommentator @GaltsGirl and myself.  Gay, straight, white, black, Christian, Jewish, college students, professionals, punk rockers, bikers, artists – Breitbart brought us all together to fight this war.

Andrew showed us that you don’t have to have big money backing or a bully pulpit to make a difference. Just roller blade through a crowd of Occupiers and talk to them. Challenge their beliefs.  Start a website and start publishing. Find like-minded people to ally with, but don’t back away from a debate.

I’m inspired to have a louder voice in the future of our country and the future of freedom and liberty.  No longer will I let excuses get in the way. As Tony Katz said yesterday on his radio show: “You can do it, or you can go about complaining that we have no one to do it.”

“His energy was so overwhelming that I think it will continue beyond his passing….I think that will be his greatest legacy, is that he’s still leading the charge, even from beyond.” – Stephen Kruiser