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Archive for the ‘Virginia Politics’ Category

…[M]en had always thought of wealth as a static quantity–to be seized, begged, inherited, shared, looted or obtained as a favor.  Americans were the first to understand that wealth has to be created.”  –Ayn Rand

courtesy, wikipedia.org

courtesy, wikipedia.org

For those of you who live around Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia, here is a great opportunity for you to express your disagreement with the tax, borrow and spend policies of the Obama Administration.

On Tuesday, April 14, 2009, there will be a Smith Mountain Lake Tea Party in Hardy, Virginia (across state route 122 from Grand Home Furnishings) between 2:30 and 4:00 p.m.  Confirmed speakers include former representative Virgil Goode, State Sen. Steve Newman, Del. Kathy Byron, Del. Charles Poindexter and Bedford County’s District Two Supervisor Chuck Neudorfer.

For more details on the SML Tea Party, what to bring, updated speakers’ list, etc. please visit the SML Tea Party’s official blog or email the party’s organizers at smlteaparty@aol.com.  Although I will be unable to attend this event, I will post a complete recap afterward.

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In Repair

It’s official: as of this afternoon, Jeff Frederick is no longer chairman of the Republican Party of Virginia.  For more of the backstory, here’s today’s New York Times.  Now that it’s official, hopefully the RPV can come together to elect Bob McDonnell, reelect Bill Bolling and elect our eventual nominee for attorney general.  In the meantime, we need a solid party leader who can unite all factions of the party as well as has an appeal in NoVa and in the downstate counties.  Having heard Dave Foster speak, I think he would be perfect: he’s an excellent speaker, he is a serious public servant, he has a number of solid ideas to promote conservative principles without looking like a “wingnut” (something that can be very offputting to centrist voters), he has a record of winning elections in perhaps the most liberal community in Virginia and his campaign for attorney general has demonstrated his ability to appeal to voters in all regions of the Commonwealth.  If we are to unite as a party, that’s the kind of leadership the RPV needs and I believe Dave Foster is uniquely qualified to deliver it.

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Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.”  –John Adams

As a follow-up to “Cross of Gold,” here’s Michael Goodwin in today’s New York Daily News echoing my concern about allowing the populist anger of the moment to blind us to the slippery slope of specific, punitive taxation.  Take away line from Jay Leno nonetheless: “‘Here’s something that kind of scared me…if the government decides they don’t like a guy, all of a sudden, hey, we’re going to tax you and then boom, and it passes.'”  If a late-night comedian can see the potential danger here, why can’t a Yale alum?

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For what is your life?  It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.”  –James 1.14

After a week-long break from school (which was dominated by my master’s thesis) and a few days to unpack and get settled in again, I haven’t had time for blogging.  To my regular readers, I apologize for my absence, but it was a much-needed break.  This sabbatical from “Much Abides” has also given me time to reassess the priorities in my life.

Over my vacation, I attended a unit committee meeting of the Republican Party of Bedford.    During the “new business,” one of our former chairmen rose to announce the passing of another former chairman.  This individual dedicated her life to promoting the party, yet only a handful of people in the meeting even remembered her.  It reminded me of the brevity and, as Solomon wrote, the vanity of life.  History is full of stories of people who did important things, but today we only remember a handful of them.  We remember that Julius Caesar conquered Gaul and Britannia, but who were his lieutenants?  We’re often convinced that the issues with which we concern ourselves are of utmost importance, when, honestly one millennium hence, who will even remember them?  We are on earth for such a short time and all of our labors pass away with time.

This realization almost made me abandon my interest in politics; what’s the point of dedicating your life to something if all of your efforts will be forgotten mere decades later?  Then I remembered a column by George Will in which he stated that perhaps the best we can expect of our leaders is not to remake the world, but “…to muddle through without breaking too much crockery.”  Our leaders need all the help they can in ensuring that they do just that.  Our world still exists today because billions of ordinary people got up every morning and performed their jobs–whether governing, farming, selling or fighting (i.e. the miracle of the ordinary)–helping civilization continue.  By performing our prescribed role in life, we are helping to leave an immortal legacy: the continued existence of life on this earth.

Now, it’s back to work…we have a world to save.

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For those of us concerned with the direction of the Republican Party of Virginia (RPV), this comes as refreshing news.  Jeff Frederick was elected chairman narrowly last year on a wave of populist sentiment against the GOP establishment.  Since then, he succeeded in drawing negative attention to the RPV for his distaseful comments comparing President Obama to Osama bin Ladenbungling a party switch that would have returned the Senate of Virginia to Republican control and overseeing the loss of three Republican-held seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, the other seat in the U.S. Senate (in his defense, I think we would have lost that race to Mark Warner regardless of the party’s chair) and losing Virginia’s electoral votes for the first time in forty-four years.  On a personal note, the ubiquity of his image on the RPV’s website makes him appear at least a little self-absorbed.

Thanks to youngreaganite at twitter for the initial tip and the link!

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While the rest of the nation gets a much-deserved break from electoral politics, there is no rest for the weary in the gracious Commonwealth of Virginia (ditto for our friends in New Jersey).  This November, we will elect a new governor (Virginia is the only state in the nation to prohibit governors from serving consecutive terms), lieutenant governor, attorney general and House of Delegates.  Over the next few weeks, I want to discuss more state and local politics on this forum (state and local politics is my passion, anyway) with a particular emphasis on the upcoming statewide races.

In May, I will be a delegate to the Republican Party of Virginia’s state convention which will formally nominate the candidates for these offices, but in the meantime, I want to introduce you to the candidates (especially the ones I will be supporting at the convention) and explain why I believe they are the right fit for their respective offices.  Now, however, here’s a great introduction to Bob McDonnell, former attorney general and the presumptive Republican nominee for governor.  Just read it and I think you will understand why Virginia Republicans are so optimistic about our chances to retake the governor’s mansion this fall.  Should you be inspired to contribute your time and/or finances to his campaign after reading this article, here’s the link to his official campaign website.

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A breaking story from home: the father of my congressional representative, Tom Perriello (D-VA), has passed away.  My thoughts and prayers go out to the congressman and his family.  Times like these put politics in perspective–even amongst political adversaries.

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