A Political Playground

I may not be a genius, but I’m not stupid either.  I know we have trouble keeping our discussions focused.  So, I’m going to open a Political Playground here, as I did with the Sports playground and the  CR Playground.   If you want to talk Politics today or tomorrow, have at it.

No profanity.   No sexually explicit references.  But other than that, this is a PLAYGROUND – almost free speech.

In that spirit, let me say that I heard something sad today.  I hear that the government may have to place the DONKEY on the endangered species list!


  1. Christiane says

    I’m dressed in RED, WHITE, and BLUE !!!!!
    I love our country. I love our military men and women.
    I hope everyone who is able can vote tomorrow.
    I hope that there will be responsible authorities watching to see that voting is done fairly and that people are not intimidated.

  2. bill says

    Oh, I thought that last sentence read, “I hear that the government may have to place Joe Blackmon on the endangered species list.”

    I just equate Donkeys and Joe Blackmon too much…

  3. Bess says

    Any predictions? The hubby and I have already informed the kids the TV is ours tomorrw and Wednesday AM. We plan to watch MSNBC cuz they are all sooooo sad.

  4. says

    My father-in-law is a candidate for County Judge. He’s a Democrat and running against a 20-year incumbent who was up until about 5 years ago, a Democrat too.

    I’ve been involved in the campaign largely in a communications role (I’ve assisted with communications in a handful of other campaigns – the door-to-door GOTV is not really my strong suit). Unfortunately, the D & R labels will likely determine the outcome of the County Judge race which really has absolutely nothing to do with being a Democrat or Republican.

    My father-in-law has positioned himself as the fiscal conservative challenging an out-of-touch incumbent who has cast votes that have resulted in failed projects and much wasteful spending. In fact, he’s been able to get some Tea Party support due to his emphasis on good governance and fiscal responsibility.

    So tomorrow will be a very different election day for me with a family member on the ballot. It’ll be interesting. It will also be the first time that I cast my vote for a Republican. Pretty sure I’ll be pulling the lever for a Baylor alum who is running for District Attorney and then I’m going to support, at the state level, Todd Staples in his re-election bid for Ag Commissioner. Staples is a Texas Baptist and great anti-hunger advocate who has worked closely with the BGCT’s CLC on hunger related issues in recent years.

    • cb scott says

      I wish your Father-in-law well.

      Tomorrow, I will vote for Dr. Robert Bentley as governor of Alabama.

      He lives in T’town and is a member of First Baptist Church, T’town. he is very active there. Of course, he will surely make a good governor. He is a Sabanite. :-)

    • Dave Miller says

      “It will also be the first time that I cast my vote for a Republican.”

      Every step in the right direction is a good step, BDW.

  5. Dave Miller says

    The big thing in Iowa is the SC Justice retention vote. Iowa passed a Marriage Act and the Supreme Court defied the will of the people of Iowa and imposed homosexual marriage on us. Three of those judges are coming up for a retention vote at the same time that a conservative governor is about to be elected. So, things could change in Iowa.

    I’m voting NO-NO-NO on the justices.

    • Dave Miller says

      It is their job to interpret the constitution and make sure that the laws created by the legislature are within the constitutional boundaries. These yahoos even admitted that they were creating a “right not imagined” by the authors of the constitution. Nothing in the Iowa constitution granted the right for homosexuals to marry. Nothing in the law that was voted by the elected legislature violated the constitution.

      They substituted THEIR opinions for the laws voted on by the elected representatives of the people. That is not their job.

      • Dave Miller says

        Fortunately, In Iowa the people have the right to hold Supreme Court justices accountable for their hubris.

      • says

        That’s the same line used after every controversial Supreme Court decision, a line used by bother liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans.

        Surely the people are not always right? The majoritarian impulse is sometimes unjust and/or unconstitutional.

      • says

        I don’t think you read what I said, BDW. The justices themselves admitted they were creating rights not envisioned in the Iowa constitution.

        You are dismissive and a little self-righteous on this one. But we have the right to hold them accountable here and I hope we do so.

        • says

          I read what you wrote.

          You’ve characterized the decision as if the unanimous Iowa Supreme Court simply issued an opinion that had nothing to do with the constitution – as if they just “made stuff up” so to speak.

          The Court simply stated that the Iowa law prohibiting same-sex marriage ran afoul the equal protection clause of the Iowa Constitution which requires that laws treat everyone alike who are “similarly situated.” And the Court held that homosexual couples are “similarly situated” just like heterosexual couples. And so, no government objective is furthered by a law that prohibits homosexual couples from civil marriage.

          Here is the “unimagined” bit that you were citing in its full context:

          “Our responsibility, however, is to protect constitutional rights of individuals from legislative enactments that have denied those rights, even when the rights have not yet been broadly accepted, were at one time unimagined, or challenge a deeply ingrained practice or law viewed to be impervious to the passage of time.”

          Certainly you will agree that a number of rights that Americans now hold were at one time or another in the past largely “unimagined.” Sheesh, this nation was built on the back of slaves. Women couldn’t vote until the 20th century. Minorities, specifically African-Americans endured much “legal” discrimination, social and economic. I don’t think that those of the Founding Era envisioned a society in which a black man would be President and women enjoyed the same equal rights as men, owning property and voting, etc.

          Now, you are free to disagree with the Iowa Supreme Court ruling. But you should at least acknowledge that it’s a ruling grounded in an interpretation of the Iowa constitution. The unanimous Court didn’t just pull this decision out of the air. You simply don’t agree with the judicial philosophy which produced this decision.

          And the whole “will of the people” is really a weak argument. You’ve already acknowledged that the role of the Supreme Court is to “prevent the legislative branch from enacting laws that were contrary to the constitution.” Great. That’s a fine statement. But if you’re going to play the “will of the people” argument, you’ll have to do it inconsistently.

          Let’s say Roe was overturned and the decision of abortion rights was kicked back to the states (such as the landscape prior to 1973). The Iowa legislature passes a law that allows abortion (with some restrictions). Public opinion polls will always show that unfettered abortion rights and/or abortion rights with some level of restrictions are the will of the people. I’m sure Iowa would not completely ban abortion.

          Would you not support a state court decision to overturn that law that grants abortion rights? I’m sure you would. Yet, you’d be going against the will of the people.

          What is constitutional and the “will of the people” are not always in agreement. Again, the people can be both unjust and/or unconstitutional. Thankfully for Baptists of the past and dissenters today, religious freedom is not contingent on the “will of the people.”

          You note that abortion was not voted into law (actually it was in some states) but instead “courted” into law. OK. But I should also point out that desegregation was not voted into law but instead “courted into law” with Brown v. Board of Education (another case dealing with an equal protection clause).

        • John Wylie says


          You and I disagree strenously both politically and theologically, but I’ll give you this, you are very articulate and are great at stating you positions in an organized and logical way. I admire your communication skills.

      • Dave Miller says

        I believe that the role intended for the Supreme Courts, whether state or federal, was simply to prevent the legislative branch from enacting laws that were contrary to the constitution.

        They have now adopted the role of law-creators in chief. In my politics, (I’m not claiming theological justification for this) it falls just below abortion on my Importance Radar. Abortion was not voted into law. It was “courted” into law.

        You may not like the will of the people (this time around) Aaron, but the American system is based on the will of the people. That’s one of the differences between America and the Kingdom of God.

        • says


          Maybe I’m reading too much into your statement that, “the American system is based on the will of the people,” but if not, I have to disagree to an extent. A pure democracy–as in traditional Baptist polity–is based exclusively on the will of the people, but the American constitutional system is somewhat different. Legislatively, it is a hybrid, or a compromise, if you prefer, creating a democratic republic. That means it has elements of both democracy and a reprersentative republic, and a republic does not function directly on “the will of the people,” but on the will of their elected representatives. Granted the people can express their displeasure with those representatives (which I suspect will characterize this election), but still, the system is at least one step removed from “the will of the people.” Furthermore, the two houses were designed with different terms of office deliberately–the House of Representatives with two-year terms in order to reflect rapid changes in political sentiment, the Senate with six-year terms to compensate for “flash in the pan” movements, which may be here today, but gone tomorrow. In a system “based (strictly) on the will of the people,” a judicial system with the constitutional authority to review laws as well as adherence to those laws would be unnecessary, yet such a judiciary is exactly what the Founding Fathers created. Again this reflects what I see as foundational to the American system, which is a way to protect a minority (even a minority of one) against what can the the tyrany of the majority–and a degree of judicial activism is necessary to accomplish this.

          Now: do I think judicial activism has gone too far in some instances? Absolutely, and you and I would probable agree on the vast majority of what those instances are. Anyway, have a fun day watching the election results. I’ve already voted.


          • Christiane says

            Hi JOHN FARISS,

            good words, these: “In a system “based (strictly) on the will of the people,” a judicial system with the constitutional authority to review laws as well as adherence to those laws would be unnecessary, yet such a judiciary is exactly what the Founding Fathers created. Again this reflects what I see as foundational to the American system, which is a way to protect a minority (even a minority of one) against what can the the tyrany of the majority–and a degree of judicial activism is necessary to accomplish this.”

        • Dave Miller says

          From what I read, we don’t really have a disagreement. I understand the checks and balances system of US government. I just think that the judicial has broken through the checks and balances system.

          The justices are not asking the question they should be asking. They should ask “Is this in accord with the constitution?”

          Instead, they are creating rights not envisioned by the founders and creating law. They were not supposed to do that.

          Most of the really heinous laws in America were not voted in by our elected leaders but foisted on us by out-of-control, left-wing activists.

          • John Fariss says

            The Bill of Rights (not the Constitution itself) grants us freedom of speech and of the press. However, under our system, an amendment to the constitution has the same force of law as though written in the constitution. A strict construction of the Constitution would require that speech and print be constitutionally protected, but not radio, television, or the internet–hence under a strict constructionist view, they could be censored by the giovernment, upon whatever whim of politics or anything else. I suspect, Dave, that you would agree freedom of the press and speech should be extended to these areas neither specified nor envisioned by the founders; but doesn’t this somewhat muddy your contention that judges should not be “creating rights not envisioned by the founders and creating law”?


          • Dave Miller says

            I do not think your analogy is correct. Since radio, TV, and other electronic media are clearly speech, they would naturally fall under the protections of the first amendment.

  6. Bill Mac says

    I will vote tomorrow, but in a state as blue as NY, it seems pointless. Like the last governor’s race, we have an articulate, well educated liberal being opposed by quasi-conservative fruit-loop of a Republican. I pray that by 2012 Republicans can somehow, some way dig up a presidential candidate who is not just conservative but:

    and Articulate

    I’m not holding my breath.

    • Lydia says

      Bill, vote anyway! It is also about committee appointments. Who is the republican froot loop?

      “I pray that by 2012 Republicans can somehow, some way dig up a presidential candidate who is not just conservative but:

      and Articulate”


      • Bill Mac says

        Voted this AM.


        Christie is a maybe, if he can overcome the (imo) irrational exuberance people have for Palin.

  7. says

    OK,,, I posted this comment on Dave’s first article before he created this political playground, so I am reposting it here…

    Currently we are suffering under the “Tierney of the Two Party System” This was not the intent of the Founding Fathers! Ever wonder why we have only two parties? This came about due to the consolidation of political power during the so called reconstruction that following the Civil War under the 17th amendment that radically shifted power from the States to Washington and the two national parties.

    Following the passing of the 17th amendment; the U.S. Senate, originally intended to represent the voice of the State governments, became the voice of the two parties. Thereby disenfranchising the States and nationalizing each and every Senate race. From that time forward the vast majority of our (or should I say their) Senators have been bought and paid for by one or the other of the two parties from which they receive the majority of their financial support. True campaign finance reform would ban all contributions from outside one’s own district or state, but that would mean no money or influence from the national parties… don’t hold your breath on that one.

    The answer is to repeal the unconstitutional 17th amendment…


    Grace Always,

  8. cb scott says

    No Dave,

    He was not talking about Tyranny. He was talking about Jean Tierney. But he was confused. He thought there were twin Tierney girls.

    There was only one. She was the costar of: “THe Left Hand Of God” along with Humphery Bogart.

    I corrected this on the other post. Don’t be pickin’ on Greg. He’s my friend.

  9. Lydia says

    Greg, Have you followed Italy’s political system? Trust me when I say that a two party system is a blessing.

    We do go through periods of reinventing ourselves…thanks to the voters. But that is a good thing.

    Have the House reps choose Senators? Do you remember why we changed that in the first place?

    • cb scott says


      Voters don’t decide issues, they decide who will decide issues.
      ————————George Will——————————–

      • Lydia says

        CB, I agree. Which is why it is good to “clean house” often.

        But as to Greg’s position, may I remind him that Ross Perot brought us Bill Clinton….twice.

    • says


      What has Italy to do with anything… I’m talking about the two national parities dominating and Steamrolling the State Elections.

      Answer me this… If the Senators, as currently elected, represent the will of the citizens of each state; then why are millions of dollars from outside of the state allowed to be funneled into these races?

      Like I said… I’t “Tyranny” any way you spell it.

      • John Wylie says

        I want to say that I’m a solid conservative politically, but I have also thought that the two party system was too powerful and limiting when it comes to choices.

        Coalitional multiparty systems can be dysfunctional, paralytic, and often unstable and weak, but at least that system does not gender loyalty to a party over a nation. I’m fairly consistently a republican, but there are many republicans I wouldn’t vote for if you paid me, the Log Cabin Republicans are an example. If we had a multi party system it would require our government to focus more on the things most Americans agree on as nothing could get done outside of a coalition.

        Now at the risk of contradicting myself, at this point, I would probably not vote for a third party candidate, because it would for all intents and purposes end up being a vote for the candidate I support the least. A great example is as Lydia brought up Ross Perot, he drew off enough conservatives to elect Bill Clinton as our president. When I advocate a multi party system I don’t mean a three party system. I think a sytem that would separate the liberals and the moderates in the democratic party and separate the conservatives and the moderates in the republican party would bring a clarity to the ballot box that would be very refreshing.

      • Lydia says

        Greg, For several reasons. Number one is that without the 2 party system we will have tons of fractured parties and the popular vote WITH electoral college could elect Dennis Kucinich with 1/8th of the vote nationally. You saw what a 3rd party did to elect Bill Clinton, twice.

        This is the reason that parliamentary systems try to have coalition governments. Italy does not do this well and is an example of many factions.

        Reason 2 is that how the Senator from NC or SC votes affect me in another state. This is due to all the Federal money flowing to the states. If I want to support a capitalistic candidate in NC, I should be able to.

        If you cut off all the pork flowing to the states then your position is tenable. But think of this-My state consistently elects mostly democrats to the state legislature but republicans to the congress.

  10. Denice Yeagin says

    I’m attending my first ever Tea Party elections night party tonight . I pray that the GOP does a better job than after the 94′ elections.
    I pray that the GOP wakes up, listens up and votes the way
    the people are letting their voices be heard or I hope we see
    a 3rd party take over. If the SBC can have a successful CR then
    anything is possible!

  11. Christiane says

    Any opinions out there concerning “Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission” and its effects on our elections ?

  12. Dave Miller says

    I’m tracking the polls vs actual voting. Its still early, but so far Republicans are doing better than even the most optimistic polls predicted. Should be an interesting night.

  13. Dave Miller says

    Good news for Iowa tonight. It looks like we have delivered pink slips to all three radical activist Supreme Court Justices!

    • cb scott says


      I have been following that one for a while, yet have not commented here. Today, let me say, I am proud of the BUZZARD-EYE NATION. :-)

  14. Dave Miller says

    One of the talking heads just asked the decisive question. Is Obama a pragmatist or an ideologue?

    The nation has delivered a pretty thumping referendum on his agenda. Does he continue to do what he thinks is right regardless of public opinion? That’s what W did. He continued with the Iraq war regardless of how unpopular it was because he believed in it – regardless of political costs, which were heavy.

    Or will Obama take the Clinton tack, sticking his finger in the wind, seeing where public opinion lies and moving to the center?

    I think he’s more the ideologue type, but I don’t really know.

  15. says

    With the HUGE victory for the good guys over the Dumbacrat’s last night, I don’t think I’ll need to punch a kitten this morning to be able to be all happy. 😛

    President Oh_Blah_Blah “Yes, we can!!” (2008)
    The American People “Oh no you dit’nt!!” (2010)

  16. Lydia says

    Two Republican African-American win the house:

    Retired Lt. Colonel Allen West’s win in Florida’s 22nd District and South Carolina State Rep. Tim Scott’s victory in that state’s 1st Congressional District.

    This will be an interesting juxtaposition for the “racists” accusations of those who disagree with policy.

    And I am still blown away that Russ Feingold in WI lost. He was a rooted fixture in the Senate. But he lost to a man who is a clear conservative businessman.

    It is SO good to see the bizarre Alan Grayson gone!

  17. Bill Mac says

    So now we have it. The House is Red and the Senate is Blue.

    Get ready for two years of: absolutely nothing

    I think right now much of the jubilation is just schadenfreude.

    Obama-care will not be repealed. The stimulus funds will still be spent. Abortion will remain legal. The newly elected will immediately begin running for election again, and the corruption of the tea-partiers by old-line republicans will commence.

    I’m not saying I was hoping for a different outcome. Even if the Senate went Red, the results would be much the same with a Democrat in the Oval Office. But don’t expect much from what we have just gotten other than passing innocuous legislation and occasionally blocking egregious legislation.

    The only way things can really change is with veto and filibuster proof majorities in both houses.

    • Lydia says

      “Get ready for two years of: absolutely nothing”

      Gridlock can be very good. I would welcome “nothing” over more stimulus and nanny state policies.

  18. cb scott says

    I am more than glad that John Boehner is now Speaker of the House. He replaces a true Socialist.

    Nonetheless, last evening as he spoke, he gave the reason as to why Christians must be careful in “hitching their wagon” to a political star.

    In a very emotional moment Boehner revealed the difference between embracing a biblical worldview or a secular worldview.

    Boehner stated: “I’ve spent my life chasing the American Dream.”

    That statement will be replayed all day and into much of the week. It was a high moment and brought much cheering from the audience and tugged at the heartstrings of many Americans.

    Yet it reveals a totally secular worldview on the part of the new Speaker of the House.

    Compare these:

    Secular Worldview– “I’ve spent my whole life chasing the American Dream.”

    Biblical Worldview– “I must die to myself, take up the cross and follow Jesus.”

    As Christians we must remember to: Humble ourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift us up.

    • says

      It will be interesting to see if the Republican House chooses to push a social conservative agenda. I sense that the issues that Southern Baptists like yourself have rallied behind for many years have been de-prioritized, with the aid of the Tea Party.

      If Boehner has this secular worldview, do you really think he’s going to aggressively pursue the “family values” agenda of Focus, FRC and ERLC?? Those groups certainly lost some clout in this election – I don’t see those groups playing the same type of power-broker role that they have in the past. It’s all Tea Party Tea Party Tea Party and that movement lacks a coherent social agenda.

      • cb scott says

        Big Daddy,

        I think you are aware that I am no fan of Richard and the ERLC in its present form.

        Also, I have feared for a long time that the Republicans have used Christians who are in opposition to abortion on demand and with concerns related to other societal issues to gain power without true willful intent to address such issues with anything other than lip service.

        Therefore, in all honesty, I really do not know what will take place in the near future. That is why I made the comment about the Boehner statement. Christians are to take up the cross and follow Jesus. We are not called to chase the American Dream. Therefore we must walk circumspectly through the land of politics.

        • cb scott says

          Big Daddy,

          I should have said, Therefore we must walk circumspectly through the land of politics, but walk through it nonetheless.

  19. Christiane says

    Now we shall examine closely the priorities of the House.
    Will they be focused on the economy and the need for jobs?
    Or will other priorities consume their time?

    I think we will know before too long how they will roll.

    And they have two years to focus on and respond to the economic priorities of the people before the 2012 elections.

    It’s going to be interesting to see how they focus their time, influence, and energies over the next two years.

  20. says


    That is what Jill Lepore detests as this Kirkus Review, as Sarah Palin woud say, Shouts out:

    Lepore (American History/Harvard Univ.; New York Burning: Liberty, Slavery, and Conspiracy in Eighteenth-Century Manhattan, 2005, etc.) explores the essence of the American Revolution, the understanding and telling of history and today’s Tea Party.

    For a number of years, the author has been contributing pieces to the New Yorker on American colonial history, pithy commentaries shaped by historical evidence and a storyteller’s hand. Here she braids those essays together, which makes them more satisfying and meaningful than if they were merely collected in an anthology. Lepore mixes in thoughts on the historian’s craft, and in particular the misuse of history by the Tea Party, that two-year-old gathering of anti-tax, anti-Obama and, as Lepore shows, anti-history folks. The author is not smug in her treatment of the Tea Partiers, but she refuses to allow them to kidnap and torture history so that it is reduced to fit their fundamentalist mold—fundamentalist in the sense of conflating originalism (that the intent of the framers is fixed and knowable), evangelism and heritage tourism, and uninterested in the historical evidence of the American Revolution, that “messy, sprawling, decades-long affair.” They treat the past as prologue, but it is a ficticious past, writes the author, “reductive, unitary and, finally, dangerously anti-pluralist”—for example, the attempt to draw a parallel between the health-care law and the Intolerable Acts. For Lepore, history—“which is controversial, contentious and contested…picky, demanding, and vital”—is hard enough to grasp without willed ignorance.


  21. says

    I think it might be time that people that have exerienced what Gene and my son have experienced with “churchs” i.e. Clubs with Hen House Ways along with the many others that are too nice to complain for fear of retribution in some form or risk being called anti-religious some how and scream it to the top of their lungs that it is O.K. to worship the risen Lord with different Music, different People but who reflect who we really are in honesty, enthusiasm and and are led by people who are not only educated in the Bible but have enough morality to teach it like it is and what IT really says without bending it or inserting emphasis that is not truly there. Let the Tricksters trick themselves, entertain themselves and — PAY THEMSELVES ! ONE CHURCH AT A TIME “Sweet Jesus”, ONE CHURCH AT A TIME. And let the henney pennys cry to themselves. Want to know where to worship. It is a free country and people that share your beliefs own buildings, organizations with heat and air, lots of them many close by existing churchs, ready for honest people to ask if they can indivigually meet together to pay respect to the One True God. And nobody will or can
    critisize you. Come out of your shell. At least the Lions don’t wait for you. This proclamation by itself might not start a movement but when I get my courage up and know I won’t let any cats out of the bagS, I’ll pass it on.

  22. says

    At least at this point let others know they are not in control of us or our thoughts . That in itself might incite talk within the SBC of meaningful Change. Look at the economy. It’s doing well. Other Good things will surely follow.