Saturday, January 30, 2010

New Media and MD GOP Politics

Like the proverbial wall-flower at her first school dance, the typical Maryland Republican politician, it seems, is still struggling to find the nerve to take the hand extended by bloggers (like me) and take that big step out onto the dance floor and cut loose! So it is with MD senate Republicans, three of whom have been singled out by the Annapolis Kapital for their "absent" votes when it came time to confirm Mike Miller, yet again, as Senate President.

To be fair, it does appear that Sen. Ed Reilly (Dist. 33) has been making some attempts at responding. The magic site meter shows him reading the blog and, it appears, trying to send himself a link or save a link using one of the two e-mail messages I sent out seeking responses. Keep trying Senator! If that link in the e-mail message is giving you trouble, try this one:

If you'd rather not e-mail me your response you could, as Chairman Pelura did, click the link at the end of this post and type in your comment. Use the Anonymous option, or just type in your name. Retype the security letters if you can make them out (if you can't click the link to get another set of letters). Personally I think e-mail is a lot easier.

As for Sen. Harris, I expected a bit more. Not just because I busted my butt for him in '08 either. But I know him to be a principled conservative and one who is not afraid to speak his mind. To be fair, it seems he does have a new campaign manager, Bill Lattanzi, who may not know who the, ahem, influential bloggers are in ...ah ... Severna Park.

Now, the Miller vote came at a bad time for "Republicans" because a couple of days later the influential Senate President became the proud father of a new Anne Arundel County District Court judge! Congratulations to the Millers and to the Senate GOP caucus who rightly share some of the credit for extending that influence by lending the patina of bipartisanship to the Democratic leadership of the General Assembly year after year, decade after decade.

As for Sen. Mooney and the staff of the GOP caucus, I have to assume they are still trying to figure out the whole Internet-email-read-and-respond thing. Or maybe they are counting on the ol' voters-have-the-attention-span-of-a-housefly thing and are sure the whole issue will fade away. Unless, of course, like with the Miller judgeship, I find another reason to post and remind the voters who responded to what and when.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Bringin' Home the Bacon - UPDATE: Vic Bernson Votes 'No!"

According to the Annapolis Kapital editorial board Maryland State Senators must vote in favor of installing Sen. Mike Miller as President of the Senate for yet another term. If they vote No or if they Abstain or vote Absent, their district risks losing whatever largess, commonly referred to as 'the bacon' the State can afford to dole out.

I also learned that all but three (3) Republican Senators voted in favor of not risking their share of 'the bacon.' Andy Harris, Alex Mooney and Ed Reilly all voted 'Absent' and I am in rare complete agreement with the Kapital that this is a 'cop-out.' The Kapital singled out Sen. Reilly for the lack of fortitude displayed in his non-vote because, I assume, he will be facing District 33 GOP voters this summer.

All three Senators will be getting a request from me to explain their 'cop-outs' and the Senate GOP Caucus will get a chance to explain why the GOP finds it necessary to vote along with the Democrats on who gets to be the Senate President. I am SURE there is a perfectly honorable, non-bacon-related, reason for doing so. Stay tuned for updates....

One of the more interesting tid-bits in this three-paragraph editorial is that the liberals on the Kapital editorial board think the 'cop-out' votes are "... intended to appeal to conservative voters..." Why would the liberals think that cop-outs in Maryland are appealing to conservatives?

To those MD GOP senators or those aspiring to keep or ascend to that office: This conservative does NOT find cop-out votes appealing in any way, shape or form. Below are the place-holder responses from the three senator cop-outs and from the GOP senate caucus:

1. Andy Harris - chirp....chirp
2. Alex Mooney - Zzzzzzzzz...Zzzzzzz
3. Ed Reilly - Still Trying...I think
4. GOP Caucus - "What's a blog?"

1-27-2010 -- District 33 senate hopeful Vic Bernson e-mailed me last night to express his frustration with the GOP caucus vote on Miller:
"Mike, like most of your readers, I am very disappointed in Ed Reilly's vote regarding Mike Miller. The vote was not a hard call. A true leader committed to conservative principles wouldn't have blinked twice before voting a resounding "No." And while I do not understand why the majority of the GOP caucus voted 'Yes,' I hope it is not, as the Capital editorial implies, merely to ensure their districts are not punished legislatively.
Mr. Bernson, currently serving on the Anne Arundel County School Board, is challenging Ed Reilly for the District 33 seat he was appointed to hold for the remainder of retiring Janet Greenip's term. Mr. Reilly has not responded yet to questions about his vote. (Full disclosure: I am advising the Bernson campaign on matters related to web and social media).

Mr. Bernson concluded his statement with a call for a little more spine out of Sen. Reilly and the rest the senate GOP:
The people of District 33 deserve a leader who is ready and willing to oppose the out-of-control, arrogant Maryland government and its constant, irresponsible spending and job-killing taxes. Voting to abstain from such a simple vote speaks volumes about the conviction and political courage of the man refusing to participate. Maybe such a tactic worked well in recent years for Mr. Obama, but I sure hope it's not a model Mr. Reilly is seeking to emulate now. We need real leadership - someone prepared to take a stand for what he truly believes. Regrettably, that is not what we received from Mr. Reilly. Truly disappointing."

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Political Language

Ah, election season is upon us once again. That means the air will be filled with "grow the economy," "foe-wards," "choice," "living in the shadows, " "green-house gases," hyphenated Americans and fifty different ways of referring to sexual deviants.

I have posted here before on what I have called the liberal lexicon. This is the language of liberals (now called "progressives" elsewhere) mainly in academia, the popular culture, the media and, yes, politics. It's a lexicon that encompasses virtually every aspect of modern human activity that previously were described with other, perfectly good words and phrases.

The lexicon was a code, at first, used by liberals to distinguish themselves as members of the club who really cared about the "issues." Once they were able to identify each other, they could form groups, go to the right parties, read the right papers and magazines, learn to laugh or gasp at the right time. In short, the new language allowed them to develop a sub-class or pseudo-society.

This new language started with the feminist "movement" when practically everything that had passed before was suddenly anti-woman. English words such as "man" quickly became unacceptable and marked anyone who used them as unenlightened or provocative political opponents. Those who considered themselves a part of this liberal sub-class dominated Western society's academic and cultural sectors and thus were able to perpetuate their lexicon in the language of subsequent generations of school children, voters and politicians.

The only distinction between the sexes permissible in the English language were biological or clinical. Out were the once ubiquitous references such as spokesman and businessman. Actress and stewardess are now verboten. Mrs. and Miss, honorifics that were used to distinguish a married woman from one who was single and presumably available, were replaced with "Ms" which means nothing.

The funny thing is that language in the European culture, against which all aspects of American culture is measured by the liberals, continue to make the distinction between married and unmarried women in the use of honorifics. Most of the surviving Romance languages in fact, separate certain nouns and articles by gender! The brand of feminism practiced here would be a complete failure in Europe.

One of the sadder side effects of trying to socially re-engineer languages is illustrated in one of the more famous political scuffles of the Obama administration. The President's nominee to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court uttered this redundancy: "A wise Latina woman..." at one point in her career. I think only one Senator noticed that "Latina" is the feminine form of the noun referring to person of Latin or Hispanic ethnicity. So a Latina is a woman and a Latino is a man. A Latina woman is an ignoramus or a political opportunist trying to score points with the liberal cultural elite.

And so liberals replace perfectly good words that have been used in thousands of years of human history with meaningless gibberish. Soon the great works of literature will be as alien to future generations as Cuneiform tablets and Egyptian hieroglyphics are today. Or they'll have been re-written to conform with whatever code is deemed acceptable by modern day liberals leaving scholars to bicker about what was the actual motto of the greatest democracy mankind is likely ever to have known.

Conservatives can only hope, in this election season, to hear their candidates reviving the classical language of our heritage in open defiance of the liberals who control most of what we see and read each day and all of what our children are taught.

No, I am NOT advocating that we return to common use words and phrases that are nothing more than crude disparagement of ethnic and racial minorities. Continual use of such vile references should constitute an embarrassing ignorance of our nation's history of slavery and repression of blacks and other racial minorities. There are good reasons why certain words leave and enter the language, political expediency real or imagined is not one of them.

And I do not, as the liberals do, presume to hold myself up as the arbiter of correct versus politically correct speech. I think you all know the difference and, I hope, you do not presume in your political correctness, to believe that you are exercising your free will and are speaking the way you want to speak. You are speaking the way THEY want you to speak. Who are they? They are your political, social, and moral opposites (or so you would have us believe). Do you hear them emulating YOUR way of doing things? No. Then why, I ask you, why do you insist on doing and saying the politically correct things? Check all that apply:

1. You think it makes you more appealing to liberal voters
2. You think it makes you appear more enlightened
3. You think it sounds more sophisticated and intelligent
4. You actually think there is nothing politically correct about your choice of words