Sunday, March 31, 2013

Billy Graham's 1960 Easter Message from Jerusalem




1.The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre.
Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.
Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, and came to the sepulchre.
So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre.
And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in.
Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie,
And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself.
Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed.
For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead.
10 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.
11 But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre,
12 And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.
13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.
14 And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.
15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.
16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.
17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
18 Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her.
19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.
20 And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.
21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Crucifixion: A Medical Perspective

Wow:



Highlights:
  • Patients under stress can sweat blood.
  • Scalp has a HUGE blood supply.
  • Jesus couldn't have survived the spear.
More information here.

You can read the original Gospel accounts here: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Common Core, Texas, and Federal Blood Money


"The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender." Proverbs 22:7 

With Common Core blowing up in the news, let's remember why Texas still has a fighting chance to resist: in 2009/10, we didn't need the money.

Back in 2009, Texas had a budget surplus.  We were one of the few states that didn't have to beg Washington.  What a blessing that was in hindsight.

Texas didn't need the money.

Federal money ALWAYS comes with strings attached.  Sometimes, it takes years for those strings to emerge, but they always do.  A strong balance sheet has enabled Texas to practice financial abstinence.

TEXAS.  DIDN'T.  NEED.  THE.  MONEY.

A strong balance sheet allows states to resist all sorts of crap.  Common Core in Texas is just the latest example.  Abstinence begets freedom, a worthwhile reward for prudent financial stewardship.

Because Texas doesn't need Washington's blood money.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

CSCOPE Data Collection (Common Core as well)



Glenn Beck has a chilling report on how CSCOPE and Common Core are collecting oodles of infomation about your children:



Highlights:
  • Began with the Stimulus in 2009.
    • $5 billion for 'finance incentive grants'
  • Race to the Top
    • Thinly concealed bribery for the states.
    • Money from Washington ALWAYS comes with strings attached.
    • In this case the strings included improving collection and use of data.
  • All the usual suspects of bad guys are involved.
    • GE
    • Microsoft
    • Apollo Alliance/Tides Foundation



Highlights:
  • G.E. gave $18 million to Common Core
  • Microsoft wants to run the operation.
  • Student monitoring from Kindergarten to age 20.
  • Act local and statewide.


Highlights:
  • Evaluating how to place you for careers at really young ages.
  • Personal Note: To me, this whole enterprise reminds me of Brave New World.
  • Predictive Testing -- Neuropsychological testing performed by Kindergarten teachers



Highlights:
  • Bug the crap out of your local and state legislators 
  • Educate the Public
  • Protect your medical records at all cost!!!

Texas' $61 BILLION (for now!) Eagle Ford payoff


"Having then gifts differeing according to the grace that is given us, let us use them." Romans 12:6

It's amazing what you can accomplish when you develop the resources with which God graced you:
Last year, the Eagle Ford Shale had a $61 billion impact and supported 116,000 jobs across a 20-county swath of South Texas — a once-sleepy region increasingly defined by an oil and gas boom.
Even using more narrow criteria, the results are impressive:
 The direct impact alone is enormous: the study counts more than 46,000 people directly employed thanks to the oil field last year.
 And we haven't seen ANYTHING yet:
So far, more than 5,400 Eagle Ford wells have been permitted by the Texas Railroad Commission, but the study expects more than 24,000 wells in the region by 2022.

Even as the field matures and fewer people work on drilling sites, there still will be thousands processing, transporting and refining that oil and gas, and everyone from attorneys to restaurant employees working along the way.

In a decade the study's authors figure that a “new normal” will mean that oil and gas will remain the region's economic behemoth, employing more than 36,000 people directly and with an economic output of more than $50 billion.
 Imagine what we could accomplish if we didn't have to constantly fight Washington.

California's Conservative Migration to Texas

 
One common refrain we hear is that the migration of Californians to Texas is a bad thing because TexansDon'tWantCalifornia'sLibreals(TM).  We've never found that argument compelling, especially since the 2010 election results made clear that the liberals in California have stayed put.  When Glenn Beck, Chuck DeVore, and myself have all moved to the same state in the past five years, it seems to indicate a trend.

Yesterday, we spoke to Chuck DeVore who pointed us to this poll:
 With its economic troubles, California has been losing people in droves. The plurality of those migrants have moved to Texas, as many as 70,000 in 2011 and 60,000 in 2012. Given this influx of new residents, we are fortunate to have at times asked our respondents whether they have moved to Texas from California, and though the actual number of these people is but a small subsample of our surveys, we have enough respondents to make two broad conclusions. First, these newcomers, on average, tend to be conservative. Pooling data from the May 2012 and February 2013 UT/Tribune surveys, we found that 57 percent of these California transplants consider themselves to be conservative, while only 27 percent consider themselves to be liberal (a fair guess as to the margin of error is somewhere around +/- 7 percentage points). Second, these new Texans aren’t rushing to find homes in the state’s urban centers: 55 percent are heading to the suburbs, the rest evenly dividing themselves between rural and urban locations.
Bottom Line: For economic refugees to Texas from California, conservatives outnumber liberals by more than two to one.  This is a good thing.  The Trib's wrap up says it well:
So while some may want to perceive the wave of Californians coming to Texas as part of the broader demographic trends that might eventually turn Texas purple, and then blue, the data collected to date suggest that Perry’s pitch appears to be hitting a chord with Californians who wear cowboy boots instead of Birkenstocks.
You can hear Governor Perry explain this phenomenon here.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

How 3D Printing Technologies will put the Gun Grabbers out of business (and boost Texas' economy!)

Two weeks ago, we put out a call to find the most innovative firearms manufacturer in Texas; this certainly qualifies:


HIGHLIGHTS:
  • 3-D printed firearm anyone can download and produce.
  • Preserving the Second Amendment over the internet.
  • In the next decade, the majority of Americans will have 3-D printers in their home.
  • This guy has five employees.
 This guy lives less than five blocks from us; we hope to have more from him soon.

ACTION ALERT: Battleground Texas Launches Statewide Tour


Battleground Texas has announced a statewide recruiting tour.  We humbly suggest conservatives show up to welcome and engage them.  Here's the tour schedule:
Corpus Christi, March 16
Laredo, March 19
McAllen, March 20
El Paso, March 25
Dallas, March 25
Fort Worth, March 26
Lubbock, March 26
Waco, March 28
Austin, April 2
Killeen, April 3
SAVE THE DATE: San Antonio, April 4
Houston, April 6
Brownsville, April 6
Longview, April 7
Not headed your way? SAVE THE DATE for an online meeting on April 3.
Details for each event are also available at their website.

Why School Choice matters to people who don't have kids


We just returned from the Texas Public Policy Foundation's luncheon The Urgency for School Choice in Texas.  We'll post video from the event when it becomes available.  In the meantime, one topic covered by former Congressman Artur Davis stuck with us.

Former Congressman Davis discussed a school choice initiative that failed in Michigan in 2010, despite Republican wins across the state.  The initiative lost because it underperformed among conservative suburban voters.  The reason these folks voted against school choice was because they perceived it as a redistributive program that would benefit someone else.

That perception is incorrect for two reasons:
  1. K-12 education is 40% of Texas' state budget.  When you increase competition in education, you lower costs.  Lowering the cost of education in this state will make it much easier to balance the budget.
  2. The education other people's kids receive impacts all of us.  When other people's kids don't get a good education, it impacts you when you can't find competent service in a store or qualified employees.  Even worse, America's dumbed down education system clearly played a role in Obama's re-election.
America's dumbed-down education system impacts you, even if you don't have kids.  It impacts you wallet directly via taxes and indirectly via who your fellow citizens vote into office.  School choice legislation currently under consideration in the 83rd Texas Legislature will help get both under control.

Update: Williamson County Conservative has a great synopsis of the whole day.

CSCOPE: Greg Abbott Speaks!!!


Via the personal Facebook page of Concerned Women for America's Associate State Director Michelle Smith:
AG Abbott told me last night he has ordered a full investigation into C-Scope and if illegal action was taken by C-Scope he stated he will, "Shut them down completely" he said it is ok to tell others that too. Thank God for General Abbott.
That works for me!!!

Julian Castro SCANDAL: This could get interesting!!!


Oh baby, the Texas Democrats' little golden boy might not be so golden afterall:
In an official response to nine Sworn Complaints, the Texas Ethics Commission (TEC) has notified most members of the San Antonio City Council they are being investigated for multiple campaign finance violations.

Mayor Julian Castro, Council members Cris Medina and Diego Bernal had the most alleged violations at over 200 each.

The Sworn Complaints allege 41 instances of accepting donations from corporations. Corporate donations are, if done knowingly, a 3rd degree felony offense. All nine complaints alleged these offenses. Well known names include MacDonalds, Inc., Holiday Inns, Inc. and Texas Associaton of Realtors.
 Ouch; read the whole thing here.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Billy Graham: What is your defining moment?!?

Powerful new video from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association:


More information here.


Texas State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione on Repatriating Texas' Gold


Texas State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione stopped by GB's radio show to discuss his efforts to establish a Gold bullion depository in the State of Texas:


Highlights:
  • Bullion depository in the state of Texas; Perry supports it.
  • The law will be passed by May and go into effect on 9/1.
  • After the law is passed, the State will determine the location.
  • Disconnecting Texas' banking system from the nightmare that is coming.
  • Texas' electric grid is independent of the rest of the country.

How to Kick the Left's Ass in Travis County


With the emergence of Battleground Texas, a lot of ink has been spilled about the left's efforts to flip Texas.  The threat is real, but we can beat it.  One key is to make the left play defense on territory it thinks it owns.

Cahnman's Musings has been a resident of Travis County for five and a half years.  We've always found the reports of it's liberalism, much like Mark Twain's demise, to be greatly exaggerated.  Before living in Travis County, we grew up in NYC and spend half a decade in and around Los Angeles.  Cahnman's Musings has seen places hopelessly up their ass with progressivism.  Travis county ain't it.

One thing we've always observed is that there are a lot of people in Travis County who are liberty minded in a general sense, but don't follow politics closely and don't vote.  Those folks are the key.  One example is the fraternities and sororities at U.T.  The Greek system is under assault from the permanent U.T. bureaucracy, and kids in the Greek system don't buy into progressivism in the same way other U.T. students do.  If you take 20 to 100 active members per house and multiply it by 20 houses, all of a sudden you're talking about meaningful vote totals.

And that's just one example.

In that spirit, Cahnman's Musings offers the following outline to put the left on defense in Travis County:
  • Online Video -- This is an inexpensive way to push information.  Online video allows us to go around media gatekeepers.  The key is to use humor to capture attention.
  • Identify, Register, and Turnout New Texans -- What do Glenn Beck, Chuck DeVore, and myself have in common?!?  We're all economic refugees from blue states, and we're all conservatives.  Economic refugees to Texas are a self-selected group.  The people moving to Texas aren't liberals.  As Governor Perry told Glenn Beck last week, "if they're takers who want government to take care of them from cradle to grave, they're going to stay in California."
Any effort to protect Texas from the left must include Travis County.  There are a lot of potential voters here.  In the short term, we can put the left on defense; over the longer haul, we can kick their ass.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

It takes Faith to be an Athiest

Wow, comedian Mark Lowry nails it:


Highlights:
  • "It takes a lot of faith to believe that all the order around us evolved from some gaseous belch in the Universe 6 billion years ago."
  • We can't find God; the best we can do is to send a Tonka truck to Mars.
  •  We didn't find God; he found us.

Collectivism, Feminism, and Individual Choice


Thursday night, Wilcow had Sabrina Schaeffer of the Independent Women's Forum on to discuss how individual liberty (for both sexes) is a threat to liberty:



HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Feminism has always been conceived as collective, activist, operation.
    • Feminists HATE when women act as independent agents.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Rabbi Daniel Lapin on Economics, Faith, and the Old Testament

 
Rabbi Daniel Lapin stopped by TheBlaze recently to promote his new book, but the Good Rabbi and Glenn never discussed the book:



HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Rabbi Lapin is "David Barton on Steroids."
  • The Tower of Babel is a "Blueprint for the Fatal Attraction of Socialism."
  • In Hebrew, money and blood are the same word.
    • Both are your lifeforce.
    • Money should do its work behind the scenes.
  • In the Exodus, 80% of the Israelites stayed behind.
    • Bottom Line: 80% of people are pussies who will accept the status quo.
    • Same formula was true for the American Revolution.
    • Pareto Principle.
  • You cannot be an entrepreneur without faith, which is why entrepreneurship never thrives in an atheistic environment.
If you want to hear more from Rabbi Lapin, you can hear him speak on the moral rightness of free enterprise here.

How Obamacare is Impacting One Texas Business


With Obamacare slamming small businesses across the nation, Glenn Beck stopped by Real News the other night to explain how Obama's Health Insurance Protection Racket will impact Mercury:



Highlights:
  • Two things could kill Mercury: Security and Health Care.
  • The Feds won't let Mercury do catastrophic plus HSA's.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Disabled Texans Deserve School Choice

Couldn't have said it better myself:



Dallas 'Health' Bureaucrats propose looting Taxpayers to force Condoms and 'Explicit' Sex Education on Schoolchildren


Sigh; a terrible idea from 'public-health' Nazi's bureaucrats in Dallas:
Teenagers are constantly being bombarded with sexually explicit messages, drowning out the message of abstinence says Dallas County Health Director Zachary Thompson.

...

His solution? More detailed and explicit sex education. But that’s not all.

“We need to start passing out condoms even in our churches, our schools, wherever young people are,” he said.
While we're at it, why don't we pass out condoms in the maternity ward five minutes after children are born?!?

For more on why this is a terrible idea, click here and here and here.

Empower Texans: Moderates Mobilize to Keep Taxpayers in the Dark


Empower Texans reports on a depressing series of events in the Texas House:
A pattern is emerging in the Texas House: moderate Republicans seem to be setting their sights on killing commonsense transparency measures during the committee process before they have a chance to see the light of day on the floor. They’re being joined by school districts and local taxing entities trying to keep taxpayers in the dark.

...

HB 14 would bring local government code into the 21st century by requiring this information be put online in a searchable format. That’s great for taxpayers who live in a digital age where information is just a quick Google search away. That’s not so great for local cities, counties, school boards, and other districts that seek to put taxpayers on the hook for more debt in order to fund massive spending projects
.
Enter yesterday’s Appropriations subcommittee meeting:

Representatives Bennett Ratliff (R – Coppell) and Drew Darby (R – San Angelo) took turns attacking the premise that taxpayers should have easier access to information already made available to them upon request.

Their justification?!?

Taxpayers should attend city council and school board meetings when this information is discussed, so taxpayers don’t get confused by potentially misleading information.
In other words, taxpayers are too dumb to figure out if more debt and more spending is appropriate. They should have that information sanitized by local officials and bureaucrats before making a decision.

...

Are these conspicuous attacks by moderates in the House an attempt to kill these transparency measures before they have a chance to see the light of day? It sure seems like it.
This cannot stand.  Transparency is a big ticket item for the 83rd Texas Legislature.  Contact your legislators here.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What is the Texas Self-Sufficiency Act?!? (HB 568)


This is a fantastic idea:
The Texas Self-Sufficiency Act directs the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker of the Texas House, and the Comptroller to name a committee of made up of legislators, budget experts and citizens from the non-profit sector to analyze not only our state's dependence on federal funds, but the impact of federal funding on Texas' economy. "Speaker Straus should be commended for naming a House interim committee on sequestration. However, we must expand on this work. My district in South East Texas, for example, has a higher proportion of seniors compared to the state overall percentage. What would happen in the event the Federal Government eliminated the funds normally allocated to them? In the current economic climate, exacerbated by out of control spending in Washington, Texas needs to study possible responses to Federal financial turmoil, and our readiness to adjust to such an event. Texans must govern Texas and Texans need to be concerned about Texas."
(h/t Texas GOP vote)

Governor Rick Perry's MUST HEAR interview with Glenn Beck

Governor Rick Perry, fresh off CPAC, gave a great interview to Glenn Beck:



Highlights:
  • On the Boy Scouts: "Promotes young men to the values that most people in this country aspire to."
  • Finance:
    • The first unwinding of the Global economy will be the failure of a foreign sovreign.
    • "We are in the process...of bringing Gold that belongs to the state of Texas back."
      • "We're in the conversation with the legislature phase."
      • It costs the State of Texas 8 basis points to store it out of state.
      • If we own it "then I'll suggest to you that it's not someone else's determination whether we can take posession of" an asset we own.
  • Employers from states that restrict firearms "will be welcome in the state of Texas."
  •  When recruiting businesses from California: "We're recruiting people who believe in freedom; if they're takers who want government to take care of them from cradle to grave, they're going to stay in California."

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Ramparts360: Letter to the Sheriff, Travis County


Ramparts360 has a post about a local effort Cahnman's Musings wholeheartedly supports:
Texas MobFather: Greg Hamilton, Travis County Sheriff, recently affirmed his belief in the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms.  I sent him a letter congratulating him on his stand and asked him to join Oath Keepers.


Over 340 sheriffs nationwide are refusing any federal mandate to confiscate citizen’s weapons…it’s imperative that each of us urge our local Sheriff to “get on board” with Oath Keepers.  Sheriffs are the ultimate LEO authority and can tell the Feds to “take a hike” if they understand their power and their citizen’s anger!

Read the full letter here.

Mediterreanian Update Tuesday: When Will Califonia Follow Cyprus?!?


The other day, the tiny Mediterranean nation of Cyprus attempted to confiscate between 7 and 10 percent of all bank deposits in the country.

Considering that the situation in Greece is worse than Cyprus and, at least in some respects, California is worse off than Greece, we wonder how long it will be until someone proposes something similar in California; California has already seriously considered taxing people who move out of state.

Sure, it sounds crazy now, but let this situation unfold for a few more years.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Comptroller Susan Combs: John Galt is Alive and Well and He's Living in Texas

Great CPAC panel featuring Texas Comptroller Susan Combs: Has Atlas Shrugged?!? Business in Obama's America:



Highlights:
  • Technology has altered the pace of change.
    • Overwhelms Centralized Bureaucracy
  • Small Businesses innovate 11x faster than Big Businesses.
  • Under Obama, fewer small businesses have been formed and more have failed than at any time in 40 years.
  • Big business and big labor can navigate big government; small business cannot.
  • We spend more money on education than any other country for worse results.
  • Susan Combs:
    • "John Galt is alive and well and he's living in Texas."
    • Some parts of the Federal government (like the EPA) just don't like successful people.
    • Texas has a diversified economy.
    • We love to sue the federal government in Texas
    • Big government is not your friend if you're a risk taker.
  • Jeanette Prenger
    • Her current Health Care bill is $21,000 per month; under Obamacare it will go up to $58,000.

2 Kings 19:29-31 and the United States in 2013


"This shall be a sign to you: You shall eat this year such as grows of itself, And in the second year what springs from the same; Also in the third year sow and reap, Plant vineyards and eat the fruit of them.  And the remnant who have escaped of the house of Judah Shall again take root downward, and bear fruit upward.  For out of Jerusalem shall go a remnant, And those who escape from Mount Zion.  The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this."  2 Kings 19:29-31

"God graciously gave Hezekiah a sign of His good intentions for His people.  Despite the fact that the Assyrian invasion had adversely affected the crops for that year and the next, by the time of the third year the fields would again yield a plentiful harvest.  Even as a natural growth would remain for the two years preceding the harvest of the third year, so God left in Israel a spiritual remnant that would in a future day swell into a mighty harvest of souls."  Commentary on Verse 29, Nelson Study Bible 

"The Lord's plan for your life will happen.  Some plans are not meant to come to pass overnight.  Sometimes the plan God has for you is a process that takes time to become reality."  Pastor John Hagee, Facebook, Earlier Today

I read that passage of scripture last week and it has stuck with me; I can't help wondering if we're witnessing something similar in the United States today.

Read in context, this passage describes God's deliverance of the Southern Kingdom, under King Hezekiah, shortly after the fall of Israel in 722 B.C.  God was in the process of rescuing Judah.  But the roots had to go down before the vineyards could produce fruit.

But when the time was right, the fruit came.  Under Hezekiah's godly leadership, Judah was blessed with a national revival that lasted decades.  But doing it right takes time.

Over the past few years, we've had some obvious setbacks, but we've also seen a lot of good.  On the surface, things look grim.  But there could be a lot going on under the surface that hasn't yet produced fruit.

Or maybe the United States is Israel, and Texas needs to prepare to be Judah; but that's a topic for another day.

#IWantTheBlazeBecause; a follow up letter to AT&T C.E.O. Randall L. Stevenson


Mr. Randall L. Stevenson
Chief Executive Officer
AT&T
1 AT&T Plaza
Dallas, TX 75202

Dear Sir,

I am writing to follow up on my letter from last Monday, to which you have not yet responded.  As your loyal customer, I wrote you to request you immediately add theBlazeTV to your U200 lineup on the same financial terms as MSNBC.  I am writing today to follow up on the status of this request.

Over the past six weeks, tens of thousands of loyal AT&T customers have contacted AT&T to request you add theBlaze.  AT&T has failed to respond.  Why is AT&T ignoring tens-of-thousands of loyal customers?!?

Right now, AT&T forces U200 customers to subsidize seven left-leaning networks compared to one and a half on the other side. U200 customers deserve more programming options.  As a company that claims to value competition, I trust AT&T wants to give its customers as many programming options as possible.

Competition is the lifeblood of American prosperity.  Adding theBlaze to the U200 (on the same financial terms as MSNBC) will promote the competition from which everyone benefits.  Finally, adding theBlaze is a tangible step AT&T can take to support a cutting edge company based in Texas, YOUR home state.

I am writing to follow up on my request to you from Monday, March 11.  As a loyal customer, I asked you to add theBlazeTV to your U200 lineup on the same financial terms as MSNBC.  I have yet to hear back from you.  Why not?!?  I look forward to prompt restitution of this matter.

Sincerely,
Adam Cahn
Austin, TX
March, 18 2013

P.S. If you agree with this letter; Cahnman's Musings respectfully requests you post it to AT&T's facebook page here.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Texas Tribune: Battleground Texas Reveals Their Weaknesses


The Texas Tribune had an interview yesterday with Jeremy Bird, the director of Battleground Texas.  In the interview, Bird tips his hand on strategy.  Some highlights:

Dems plan to boost turnout (and, even though they don't say it out loud, fraud):
Bird contends that Republicans' confidence is based on elections in which only about half of the state has turned out to vote. “We’ll see what happens when we start to get 60 or 65 or 70 percent turnout. It’s going to look very different,”
 This is a point conservatives would do well to heed.  The Obama campaign made it a priority to register marginal voters and get them to the polls.  There's no reason to believe they couldn't make headway with a similar effort in Texas.  The caution to Democrats, however, is that this is a double-edged sword.  There are dozens (if not hundreds) of people who don't vote in every Church across this state.

Bird reveals their timetable:
Part of the reason that [the Obama campaign] won Florida in 2012 is that we had had a grassroots program running for six years with all the components — digital, communications, field, data, analytics — all of them put together into a 21st century modern campaign that worked for people's votes.
Six years from today would mean that Democrats intend to compete statewide around 2018.  That's not impossible, but it does mean there's plenty of time between now and then for events to intervene.  Personally, we think the global economy will collapse before Battleground Texas has time to execute this plan; when that happens, it will reshuffle the deck of domestic politics in a way Battleground Texas doesn't anticipate.

The specifics of how they plan to boost turnout:
We have to do that here. And it can’t just happen in one part of the state; it has to happen across the state. We need to touch places where we’re getting 25 percent of the vote and get 32 percent of the vote. It’s not necessarily about winning all those places, but we have to compete there. And then we have to have higher turnout in places that have already gone blue.
The point about going from 25 percent to 32 percent in hostile territory is an interesting one Cahnman's Musings had not thought about.  That's a good strategy in a vacuum.  However, like we said earlier, it's a strategy that cuts both ways.  We live in Austin, and there is an untapped pool of potential conservative voters right here.  Both sides are going to work overtime to boost turnout.

Then, almost as an afterthought, Bird lets the cat out of the bag:
In order to do this right, we’re going to have to raise the money, the grassroots money to do it and then ultimately transition that into a 21st century campaign with real organizers in neighborhoods working for every single vote.
If you only take one point away from this post, make it this one: the left doesn't (yet) have the money to pull this off.  The ONLY WAY they will get the money they need is if Republicans expand state government for them.  That's how the left took over Colorado.  That's why School Choice and Medicaid are such important fights.  The left will only acquire the resources necessary to swing Texas if Republicans give them a bigger government from which to siphon money.

Finally, Bird closes out with a cryptic (and bizarre) statement:
There are millions of kids in this state who are currently being denied access to health insurance because of the current governor.
We have no idea what Bird's talking about, but our educated guess is that he's talking about Rick Perry's refusal to expand Medicaid under Obamacare. That's bizarre; Medicaid is a failed program that exploits the vulnerable.  If Battleground Texas wants to make expanding substandard Health Care their central argument, go for it!

Bottom line: The Left intends to get more of their people to the polls than they have in the past (which will also make fraud easier).  Cahnman's Musings expects them to pull that off.  What the left cannot control, however, is turnout on our side.  There are plenty of untapped potential Conservative voters in this state; Cahnman's Musings goes to Church with hundreds of them.  The challenge for conservatives in Texas will be to increase engagement among folks who already agree with us but don't necessarily vote.

Friday, March 15, 2013

UPDATE: California Welfare Scam Parody

Three months ago, we brought you this shocking video of a Calfornia Welfare recipient; while everything she says in the original video is true, it turns out that that interview was the companion piece to this hilarious parody:


Welcome to America in Barack Obama's second term

Thursday, March 14, 2013

By Popular Demand: Governor Rick Perry -- CPAC 2013

Governor Perry gave a barnburner of a speech today in Washington where he also tipped his hand about the coming fight in Texas over Medicaid:



Highlights:
  • Releasing dangerous foreign nationals into the United States and blaming the sequester was a 'federally sponsored jailbreak.'
  • "There's nothing free that comes from Washington."
    • Me: Amen to that!!!
  • "All we have is a promise from a Federal Government that apparently can't afford to lock up dangerous criminals."
  • After repeating his unwavering opposition to expanding Medicaid under Obamacare, Governor Perry then laid out his alternative in more detail than I've heard before:
    • Patient-Centered Reforms
    • Flexibility for States to Innovate
    • Higher co-pays for Medicaid services to discourage overconsumption
    • Asset tests for Medicaid benefits.
    • HSA's for the poor.
  •  "We care about the Health of our citizens more than Washington."
  • On Economic Growth: "It just so happens that balanced budgets and one of the lowest tax and spending burdens in the nation corresponds with our #1 ranking when it comes to jobs created."
  • We don't believe growing government grows the economy.

WHY Californians move to Texas in Three Minutes

My goodness, it can take 3 FRIGGIN' YEARS to get a building permit in California:


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Awesome: The Texas Model in One Tweet

Perish the thought:



Whatever will Texas do without solar energy?!?

Learn more about the Texas Model here.

Push Junction: Carpetbagging Hipster Leads Battleground Texas



The San Antonio Express News reports on an early meeting of Battleground Texas:
Jeremy Bird, the former national field director for President Barack Obama and the driving force of Battleground Texas, could have picked anywhere in the state to begin the group's launch tour. He chose San Antonio not because it's the “best city in Texas,” as Juli├ín Castro proclaimed, but because — as Medina noted — this is where the political firepower is located.

Like many successful political organizers, Bird is a hipster nerd: a skinny, bespectacled, coolly analytical veteran of the game who also sees that game as an inspiring civics lesson. The product of a suburban St. Louis trailer park, he has no roots in Texas, but tried to make up for lost time by twice expressing his enthusiasm for tacos.

Above all, Bird might be the best representation of the strategic revolution that Obama (via Howard Dean) has wrought in American politics. While the GOP has made great sport of Obama's background as a community organizer (and it's certainly debatable how valuable that background has been in the White House), that experience made Obama unusually receptive to the concept of grassroots political organizing — and unusually aware of the modern-day limits of TV advertising.

....

Bird and Jenn Brown, executive director of Battleground Texas, said the campaign will be relentless. It will center on local, precinct-by-precinct drives to tap into the large number of unregistered Latino and African American voters, and the use of state-of-the-art data collection and analytics to get those voters to the polls. And it'll rely on plenty of money.

It all sounded strikingly similar to the ethos that drove the Obama campaigns of 2008 and 2012. Obama campaign leaders generally paid little attention to polls. They believed turnout was everything — that they had the votes to win; they just had to go out and get them.

 There isn't a lot of new information in this article.  That Battleground Texas intends to win through aggressive micro-targeting isn't exactly news.  That being said, when they say: 'that they had the votes to win; they just had to go out and get them,' Cahnman's Musings considers that statement interesting, considering that Julian Castro is up for re-election in two months.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Who is the most innovative Ammo Maker in Texas?!?


The other night on Facebook, I made this prediction:
Random Thought: We're close to the top of a bubble; before the end of the year, the price of ammo will collapse.
The reason I believe this is because the market for guns and ammunition is an example of what economists call 'perfect competition.'  The product is (relatively) homogenous and barriers to entry are (relatively) modest.  Given this backdrop, with rising demand causing shortages, Economics 101 suggests that new sellers will enter the market.

Obviously, that equation doesn't account for interference in the market by the federal government.  While I understand those concerns, I just don't think the Federal government is competent enough to pull it off.  I have a funny feeling the number of small scale entrepreneurs who will enter the market in the next 12 to 18 months will overwhelm Washington's ability to stop it.

Cahnman's Musings would like to solicit reader feedback.  Who, in your opinion, is the most innovative ammunition manufacturer currently operating in the state of Texas?!?  Why?!?  What have they done in the past 6 to 12 months that makes you confident they can consistently outwit Washington.  Cahnman's Musings would like to help publicize their business.

Monday, March 11, 2013

#IWantTheBlazeBecause; an Open Letter to AT&T C.E.O. Randall L. Stevenson


Mr. Randall L. Stevenson
Chief Executive Officer
AT&T
1 AT&T Plaza
Dallas, TX 75202

Dear Mr. Stevenson,

Over the past nine months, I have been an AT & T U-verse customer.  I also used to sell U-Verse.  This letter, however, is not about me.  This letter is about better serving your customers while strengthening Texas' Economy.  I'm writing to request you immediately make theBlazeTV available on your U200 television package at the same per subscriber fee you pay MSNBC.

Competition is the lifeblood of American prosperity.  Competition ensures consumers the best quality product at a fair price.  That why I'd like you to increase the news options available to AT&T U-verse customers.  Currently, the U200 package has 7 left-leaning channels compared to one and a half psuedo-conservative options. I ask you to put theBlaze on equal footing with those other networks.

The need for more news options is obvious; for example:
  • #IWantTheBlazeBecause they showcase voices like David Barton and Buck Sexton that the rest of the media ignores.
Finally, I'd like to add theBlaze to protect and strengthen Texas' Economy.  Mercury Radio Arts, TheBlaze's parent company, is a growing company based in Texas.  Mercury's success is living proof the Texas Model works.  As a respected business leader in Texas, I am confident AT&T values its reputation as a company that promotes competition, especially when the newest competitor is a growing Texas company.  That's why I request you add theBlaze to your U200 lineup at the same per subscriber fee you pay MSNBC.

Sincerely,
Adam Cahn
Austin, TX
March 11, 2013

P.S. If you agree with this letter, Cahnman's Musings respectfully requests you post it to U-Verse's facebook page here.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

TheBlazeTV does CSCOPE


 Glenn Beck devoted his entire television program to an expose on CSCOPE today.

First up, David Barton explains the origins of CSCOPE in the Texas Textbook wars of 3-4 years ago:



HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Since SBOE monitors curriculum, they call CSCOPE 'instructional material.'
  • Teaching globalism, not American Exceptionalism.
  • Taking out: Nathan Hale, Liberty Bell, Christopher Columbus' faith.
  • Replacing with: Respect and fairness, Dolores Huerta.
  • Replacing George Washington with Kay Bailey Hutchinson (yeah, wrap your mind around that one!)
  • Emphasis on Contemporary over History.
  • Refused to teach abundance alongside scarcity: "The other members considered all resources scarce."

Next, two teachers talk about CSCOPE from the Inside:



HIGHLIGHTS:
  • CSCOPE sets up a system where educrats control everything.
  • Shocked by the mediocrity of the content.
  • Teachers are constantly monitored by educrats.
  • Teachers have been fired for speaking out to school boards.
  • "There's tremendous coercion."
Finally, Texas Senator Dan Patrick, chair of the Senate Education committee updates the state of play in his committee's ongoing investigation of CSCOPE:



HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Talks about the runaround he's gotten: CSCOPE formed the shell company to hide everything.
  • "We don't have the votes" to shut down CSCOPE.
  • Apple will probably put CSCOPE out of business.

You can read the Blaze's write-up of this episode here.

Finally, if you don't yet get theBlazeTV, you can get it here.

Empower Texans: Straus Seeks Sugarcoat for Medicaid Expansion


Sigh, leave it to Joe Straus to attempt to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory; money quote:
A month after confessing his desire for the Legislature to have a conservation about Medicaid expansion, Speaker Straus now says it’s time to “get our heads out of the sand” in order to find a “Texas solution.” The problem? His idea of a solution is really nothing more than a sugarcoated version of what the Obama Administration is already offering.

....

Knowing that Medicaid expansion under the current terms proposed by the Obama Administration is completely off the table, members of the grow-government crowd in the Capitol have been speculating about what type of “compromise” the Legislature might agree to with the Obama Administration.

The most common idea thrown against the wall would mimic the recent Arkansas deal struck with the feds, permitting the billions of federal tax dollars to be used to subsidize the purchase of private insurance for everyone making less than 133% of the federal poverty level.

Private insurance instead of a government bureaucracy? How innovative! How flexible! Or at least so they say…

Not discussed about the Arkansas plan is the requirement that these private insurance plans match the same benefits and cost-sharing requirements as what would otherwise be mandated under the original Medicaid expansion offer.

Couple that with the fact that private insurance premiums are set to skyrocket thanks to the litany of regulations set by ObamaCare, and you come up with a system that costs on average $3,000 more per person under virtually the same conditions originally put forth by the federal government.
 Folks who oppose the Medicaid expansion need to contact their legislators.

Why Did Congressman Roger Williams vote to Fund Obamacare?!?


Well, that's disappointing.

Fresh off of Rand Paul's historic filibuster, U.S. House Republicans passed a bill to fund the government for the rest of the year; unfortunately:
except for ten brave souls, every Republican Congressman Voted to Approve Obamacare Today,  and they broke their own rules to do it.
 My Congressman, Roger Williams (R - Austin/Ft. Worth), was not one of those ten brave souls.

To explain his vote, Congressman Williams said:
“The President’s sequester placed rigid requirements on the Department of Defense, putting our nation at risk.  This CR provides the DoD and the Department of Veterans Affairs with the flexibility to meet all fiscal requirements and determine how best to absorb the sequester cuts and ensure that our troops – both past and present – have the necessary resources,” said Williams.
Taken at face value, Congressman Williams seems to be arguing that giving Chuck Hagel more leeway over the Defense budget is a worthwhile trade-off for continuing to fund Obamacare.  That's a bizarre calculation, on both policy and political grounds, especially for a guy who only got 25% in a12 man primary.  Cahnman's Musings is very disappointed by this vote from Congressman Roger Williams.

Cahnman's Musings has reached out to Congressman Williams' office and will update this post if they respond.

In the meantime, Cahnman's Musings urges our readers in Austin, Cleburne, and Ft. Worth to contact Congressman Williams and express your disappointment over his vote on H.R. 933:
Congressman Roger Williams: 
  • Washington D.C.  -- (202) 225 - 9896
  • Austin -- (512) 473 - 8910
  • Cleburne -- (817) 774 - 2576
  • Twitter: @RepRWilliams

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

PushJunction: Wichita Falls ISD filibusters CSCOPE meeting.


Cahnman's Musings hasn't discussed CSCOPE for awhile, but this story out of Wichita Falls merits comment:
The 200 community members who attended Tuesday’s Wichita Falls ISD noon work session to hear board members discuss CSCOPE sat through a meticulously long presentation that lasted long past the lunch hour.

....

By 2 p.m. most community members were still sitting patiently through Assistant Superintendent Tim Powers’ two-hour presentation of 111 detailed slides — most unreadable to audience members — giving intricate detail about CSCOPE’s structure.

....

Such presentations are typically capped at 30-45 minutes.

Obviously, citizen activism has made an impact and the CSCOPE people are scared.  It seems their strategy is to string this out until we get bored and moved on.  This is the moment where persistence is key.

Senator Cruz Remembers the Alamo

This is just all sorts of awesome:


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Medicaid, circa 2017


Last week, on the blogger conference call Governor Perry pointed out that:
Washington is going to run out of money in 3-4 years, at which point the states will be on the hook for the full cost; that's when they're going to start pushing single-payer.
That is a point that cannot be repeated often enough.  Washington is going to run out of money.  When that happens, the Medicaid burden will fall on states.  When that happens, expanded Medicaid will be an economic anvil for participating states.  States that resist the lure of Medicaid expansion today will reap tremendous benefits in 3 to 4 years when Washington runs out of money.

Expanding the current Medicaid system is an economic suicide pact.

Why Colorado Turned Blue (and the future of Texas) -- The Missing Link


"Colorado, what kind of pansy girls have you become?!?....We need some MEN in Texas."  Glenn Beck, Radio, March 5 2013, Bottom of the First Hour.

Last night, this diary on Redstate made the rounds.  It is a warning to Texans that Democrats can turn Texas blue the same way they turned Colorado blue in the mid-2000's.  There is another aspect of this story, however, that Texas Republicans would be well served to remember.

In 2002, National Review named (then) Colorado Governor Bill Owens America's Best Governor.  At the time, Owens had established a track record as a conservative reformer and he was re-elected by the largest margin in Colorado history.  At the time, Colorado had a strict spending cap known called the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR); more on that in a minute. Then came the budget battle of 2003 and, specifically, a fight over school finance.  During that battle, the left savaged Governor Owens.

Following that budget fight, Bill Owens lost his nerve.  In 2005, Bill Owens sold his soul to the Democrats and backed Prop. C, which gutted TABOR.  Gutting TABOR opened the floodgates of big government, and Colorado has since been hopelessly blue.

So, what does this mean for Republicans in Texas in 2013?!?

It means that money matters.  Beyond the obvious flaws, big government is also a money laundering scheme for the Democrat party.  When Colorado Republicans caved to the grow-government crowd, they signed their death warrant.

Ten days ago, we outlined big-ticket items for the 83rd Legislature: Texas Budget Compact, School Choice, Medicaid, Transparency, and Margins Tax Elimination.  The reason these five reforms are big ticket items is that, over they long-run, each keeps money in the hands of citizens and out of the hands of government.  Credit where its due, Texas Republicans had a good start to the week.

The key is to stay on public-policy offense.  If Texas Republicans do that, they'll be fine.  If they don't, they'll deserve what they get.

Update: A longtime Texas Political Observer writes in to add:

It's good to have outsiders such as the folks from Labor Union Report writing  articles, if only to create a sense of urgency for action. However:

 1) Unlike previous Democratic efforts in Texas that were built around remnants of Martin Frost’s congressional operation, Battleground Texas is almost entirely  out-of-state talent. Texas’ political culture is unlike DC or virtually any other state. If you don't understand the history and the nuances, you're going to make a fool of yourself. Even a couple of weeks in, it's obvious that these folks don't get Texas.

2) The Right already has the seven capacities in place in Texas. In fact, once we saw what the Left had done in Colorado, our side immediately moved to ensure that those seven capacities existed in Texas. Colorado was their proof of  concept, Texas is ours.

3) Texas Republicans have done far better with Hispanic voters than the party in most other states. If we can hang on to 35-40% of the Hispanic vote going forward, we'll be fine. Plus we're beginning to develop a good bench of Hispanic Republican officeholders throughout the state, including in heavily Hispanic regions.
 

4) To become the majority, Democrats have to make up 17 points at the statewide level, pick up 4 Senate seats when the only vulnerable one is theirs, and flip 21 House seats when their only real opportunities are in the cities of Dallas and Houston, which are declining in influence compared to their suburbs which are heavily Republican. They’ve maxed out in Austin, San Antonio, and El Paso, and the rural areas north of IH-10 are wholly conservative.
 

5) The Democrats have won zero statewide races since 1994 and have zero infrastructure outside the urban counties. Heck, there were close to 20 counties last year where they didn't conduct a primary because they couldn't find anyone willing to have their name listed as a county chairman. (The Republicans had primaries in all 254.) And the potentially viable statewide candidates in the Democrats’ pipeline can be counted on one hand.

6) The latest survey data indicates that 47 percent of Texans have “strongly unfavorable” opinions of the President.
 

If conservatives totally mess things up, Texas could turn purple in 2022. But it would have to be total. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Texas House Republicans do the right thing (for now) on Medicaid


Phew; Texas House Republicans voted overwhelmingly to support Governor Perry and not expand Medicaid.

This should take Medicaid expansion under Obamacare off the table until after the next election. (Update: No, it won't).

I'll (still) take it.

Update II: Sunshine State Sarah (of Texas) reports more good news out of Florida.

ACTION ALERT: Texas House Republicans Cave on Obamacare?!?


Wow; according to RedState, Texas House Republicans are going wobbly on Obamacare:
Republican Texas State Representatives will [meet] at 1pm CT today consider caving on Obamacare.
According to our sources, both inside and outside the legislature, that's not going to happen.  Texas House Republicans seem to understand the folly of Medicaid expansion.  Still, it never hurts to remind them how you feel.

First, contact YOUR legislator via the link above; also, we recommend you also contact House Speaker Joe Straus; the Texas House Speaker website doesn't give the number to his Capital Office, but you can reach his district office at (210) 828-4411.

Update: You can also reach the Speaker on Twitter: @speakerstraus

Empower Texans has more here.

Update II (7 pm): Texas House Republicans did the right thing.