The Party Strikes Back

I just got this from Katon Dawson. I have no idea why he didn’t send it earlier so we could have published it as a letter to the editor before the election. (As we told readers, the cutoff for primary-related letters was 10 a.m. Friday, and we ran the last of them Sunday. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, Tuesday’s page was gone by the time I saw this message, which was sent at 11:55 a.m. Monday.):

                                       June 12, 2006
To Mr. Brad Warthen,
    You have never hidden your dislike for political parties, but in your column from June 4 your request to voters went over the line. You asked Democrats to vote in the Republican Party.
    This is an affront to both Democrat and Republican voters in South Carolina.
     Now The State newspaper can endorse whomever they like, however for a journalist to call for voters of one party to vote in another party’s primary is irresponsible.
     Primaries are ways voters choose their party’s nominees. I take it very seriously and I know thousands of other Republican voters take it very seriously. My guess is that Democrat voters also take choosing their nominees very seriously.
     As much as you would like to turn elections into meaningless dribble, they are not.
     Deciding who runs our state is a very important task, one for the citizens of South Carolina to decide.
     You ask Democrats to vote in the Republican Primary for a specific Superintendent of Education candidate rather than “wasting your vote” in the Democrat Primary for Governor. What does that say to Tommy Moore, Frank Willis, or Dennis Aughtry? What does that say to their campaign volunteers, many of whom have been working across the state for the past year? And what does that say to Democrat voters who plan to faithfully cast their vote on June 13th?
    I question your ethical judgment when you call for the voters of one party to influence the election of another party.
    Even though you have distain for the electoral process, please do not diminish it for the hundreds of thousands of South Carolinians who wish to do their part in choosing their leaders.
    I just hope the readers of The State pay little attention to your disillusioned view of the electoral process.

Katon Dawson
Chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party

You know what I take seriously? The future of education in South Carolina. And that is probably going to be determined in the Republican primary tomorrow. Why Katon wouldn’t want anyone and everyone to have a say in that is beyond me.

I just can’t follow partisan thinking. For years, the GOP begs everybody in South Carolina to come vote in their primaries (even inserting irresponsible gimmicks onto their ballots to draw voters, such as the bogus Confederate Flag "referendum" of 1994), holds press conferences to run it in Democrats’ faces when one of their politicians switches sides, and makes a huge deal about how many more people voted in the latest GOP primary than ever before.

Now, all of a sudden, it’s a members-only proposition. Sheesh. I believe, as someone once said, that "Deciding who runs our state is a very important task, one for the citizens of South Carolina to decide." That means all of them, not just the people who identify with the party that happens to have the only contested primary for the office.


Also, I curious as to why parties are still relevant at a time when thousands of untrackable dollars are spent by groups such as this one and this one on behalf of some Republicans in an effort to purge the Legislature and other state offices of certain other Republicans?

By the way, "Democrat" is a noun. the adjective form is "Democratic."

100 thoughts on “The Party Strikes Back

  1. kc

    Please tell Mr. Dawson for me that “Democrat” is a noun, not an adjective. “Democratic” is the proper adjective.

  2. Dave

    Two more reasons to support Governor Sanford and to keep him for another term..
    South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford Signs
    Two NRA-Backed Bills Into Law!
    On Friday, June 9, Governor Mark Sanford (R)
    signed two prominent National Rifle
    Association (NRA)-backed bills into law. The
    “Castle Doctrine” self-defense bill protects
    the rights of innocent victims to protect
    themselves from criminal attack, while the
    “Emergency Powers Protection” language
    prevents local governments from confiscating
    firearms during a state of emergency.
    “I want to thank Governor Mark Sanford for
    signing these critical victims’ rights bills
    into law,” said Chris W. Cox, NRA’s chief
    lobbyist. “When you’re confronted by a
    criminal, you don’t have the luxury of time.
    The “Castle Doctrine” bill states that if
    victims choose to stand their ground and
    fight, their decision will not be
    second-guessed by the State of South
    “Furthermore, the breakdown of civil order in
    New Orleans during the aftermath of Hurricane
    Katrina demonstrates that Americans’ rights
    to keep and bear arms are especially
    important during a state of emergency. S.
    1261 ensures that local governments will be
    unable to restrict law-abiding citizens’ use,
    sale, or transportation of firearms during
    such difficult times.”
    H. 4301, the “Castle Doctrine” self-defense
    bill, simply states that if a criminal breaks
    into your home, your occupied vehicle or your
    place of business, you may presume he is
    there to do bodily harm and you may use any
    force necessary against him. Furthermore,
    this law provides protection from criminal
    prosecution and civil litigation for those
    who defend themselves from criminal attack.
    S. 1261 was originally introduced to allow
    qualified Right-to-Carry permit applicants
    who live outside the Palmetto State to be
    issued permits if they own land in South
    Carolina. It was amended in the House,
    however, to include the language that bars
    the ability of local governments to restrict
    the use, sale, or transportation of firearms
    during a state of emergency.
    The “Castle Doctrine” bill passed unanimously
    in both the state house and senate. South
    Carolina joins ten other states who have
    signed similar legislation into law this
    legislative cycle.
    S. 1261, with the “Emergency Powers
    Protection” language, passed by a vote of
    109-1 in the house and was ratified
    unanimously by the State Senate. Seven other
    states have enacted such legislation this
    “On behalf of all NRA members in South
    Carolina, I want to thank Governor Mark
    Sanford for signing these important bills
    into law. I’d also like to thank
    Representative G. Murell Smith (R-67) for his
    leadership in passing “Castle Doctrine”
    through the legislature, Representative Mike
    Pitts (R-14) for his commitment to seeing the
    “Emergency Protection” language become law,
    and Senator Danny Verdin for his efforts with
    both bills in the Senate,” concluded Cox.
    “Both of these bills are about putting the
    law back on the side of the victim, the way
    it’s supposed to be.”

  3. Aaron

    It’s incredibly odd how this group of people who arbitrarily elect ideals, symbols and beliefs (and they change) is somehow sacrosanct, while another group is not.
    I’d suggest doing whatever it takes to get your state running properly is far more important than arbitrary, invisible lines in the sand. Let them moan.
    Oh, and Brad, you didn’t post my letter to the editor. For shame!

  4. Nathan

    Funny, I actually wrote a post on that in my newly created blog (linked above) earlier today. Anyway, I think that the issue is that there are two parties because they have different ideas about how government should be run. If the Democrats switch sides and vote on thier ideals in the Republican primary (this is the example being called for here, but it could be the other way as well) then you will end up with two liberal candidates and no real conservative choice. I happen to think that Staton is the right choice, and he is certainly not a liberal, but to ask people to switch sides in a primary undermines the idea of the primary. The primary is where each party chooses a candidate. The general election then choses who is best qualified from the parties. The democrats have a State Superintendent of Education candidate running for office, let them have thier alternative, and Republicans can have thiers.

  5. Randy E

    As a democrat and a public school teacher, I will vote for Staton in the primary because I believe in what he proposes and in his effort to generate a detailed plan. At the moment, I am completely unimpressed with the democratic candidate, Jim Rex because of his lack of vision and of details. I may very well end up voting for Rex if he comes up with a plan that involves more than the standard stereotypical educator “happy talk” he offers now on his website.
    This is a clear example of the validity of cross over voting that Brad encouraged. The republicans serve democratic citizens as well. Have the neocons in here devolved to the point that they believe party affiliation pertains to public service as well? President Bush is my president also. Because I disagree with him doesn’t mean I hate him nor does it mean he shouldn’t answer to me as well as his base.
    If I wanted to sabotage the GOP, I’d actually vote for Floyd because Staton poses much greater opposition for Rex. With Floyd, Rex can cater his “vision” and platform to be anti-voucher (which is probably why he’s waiting to share his “vision”). Brad didn’t endorse the sabotage candidate, Brad endorsed the education candidate.

  6. Lee

    So Brad Warthen thinks “education is so important” that it justifies election games, dirty tricks, voting twice, and who knows what else.
    The ends justify the means, especially to those with the Vision of the Self-Annointed.
    Mr. Dawson gets it. So do honest voters, in both parties.

  7. Lee

    Those America hating libs simply want to vote for a candidate that will actually win. OUR president smokes their candidate twice and OUR governor is a lock to win reelection. The libs want to keep the only office they have, running our socialist failing schools. Coulter is so right that libs are stupid.

  8. Lee

    This previous post disowning the previous post is socialist propoganda – libs using spam and viruses to overthrow our country starting with me. I’m telling Ann Coulter and then you’ll be sorry!!

  9. Dave

    Lee, TedFernandez is guilty of identity theft. Does anyone care about that? If you get a lawyer to contact Yahoo, they will out him or her. It’s probably Mary Rosh.

  10. Lee

    Dave, I have run into these cyberthugs several times. The primary “debate” tactic of the modern “progressive” is some form of personal libel. The last punk thought he was safe operating from an account at an Ivy League college. Their attorney quickly educated him and the sympathetic administration, and he was unable to graduate on time without computer access.

  11. BLSaiken

    Nathan’s post from 7:14 p.m. yesterday reflects a charming, if somewhat infuriating, conceit of Republicans in this state: that all Democrats are liberals, just hiding out until the right moment emerges for them to strike and seize power. Having lived and worked in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, I can assure that South Carolina has few liberals. As we’ve learned from the Reagan and Bush II administrations, “free-spending” and “liberal” are not synonymous.

  12. kc

    Why even bother parodying Lee when he writes stuff like this: So Brad Warthen thinks “education is so important” that it justifies election games, dirty tricks, voting twice, and who knows what else.
    I’m not a particular fan of Mr. W, but I missed where he advocated “dirty tricks” and “voting twice.”

  13. tammy

    Maybe if Mr. Dawson and the SC GOP wouldn’t accept so much sketchy out of state funding from organizations like the SCRG and the CIA Dems like myself wouldn’t feel like I had to crossover and vote in the R primary in an attempt to protect our public school system. I’m sick and tired of the hypocritical GOP in this country…if you can play “dirty politics” so can everyone else.
    Thanks Brad for having the balls to fight the good fight.

  14. Lee

    kc, you did obviously did miss where Brad Warthen said he saw nothing wrong with Democrats voting in their primary and in the Republican primary (which is illegal in most states).
    The entire point of his original post was to back Democrat Sally Huguley in her effort to have Democrats vote against strong candidates in the GOP primary, in order to weaken the GOP ballot in the November election.
    I just happen to remember working as a poll worker in a Democrat ward when Tricky Dick Riley’s campaign workers bussed in a load of mentally retarded people from a state facility, who had been trained with candy to vote the straight ticket.

  15. Lee

    If the editors of The State find “out of state funding” so objectionable, why do they celebrate their purchase by an out of state media conglomerate?
    To use Warthen logic, why should the readers trust a newspaper which is financed by people who don’t live in South Carolina, and have a broader agenda?

  16. tammy

    Dick Riley must have watched people like Lee vote before he came up with the idea to bring in the voters from the state facility.
    newspapers are in the business of selling NEWSPAPERS. I know what they are doing here. Do you know why these out of state funders are so interested in pushing vouchers through in S.C.? What exactly are they going to gain? Well, I have no idea…and that’s why it scares me.
    Of course you haven’t asked that. You are their target audience. The blind follower. Regardless of their agenda, they know S.C. is full of ignorant people that will simply pull R regardless of who is funding it.

  17. Nathan

    BLS, I’m trying really hard to understand this. If the Democrats are not the liberal party (they support unfettered abortion, higher taxes on the so-called rich and middle class, gay marriage, and lighter penalties on sex offenders-for those wondering, the law allowing the death penalty on repeat child rapists was passed with a party line vote), then what do Democrats stand for? I don’t feel ashamed to be called a conservative. Why are Dems so scared of being called liberal?

  18. Randy E

    IDENTITY THEFT for using a common first name on a blog!?!??! That may be the most hysterical posting yet because Dave was actually serious. Hey Dave, tell Ann Coulter, maybe she’ll say something about his deceased grandparents.
    I named my dog after Brad (all bark no bite), is that an FCC violation? Maybe I violated a Blue Law.
    KC, the issue here is a culture of us vs them in the fascist community. When they use tricks like having a marketing firm bombard the democratic campaign office with phone calls to tie up their lines then they question the motive of every move that appears to infringe on their rights.
    The neocons posting such drivel should read the constitution and SC state law. I, as a democrat, have the RIGHT to vote in the Republican primary, which I’m about to do, because I may actually evaluate the candidates on individual merit as opposed to blindly going straight party. This is a foreign concept because these neocons follow lock step with what others tell them.

  19. Aaron

    Business ownership and government funding are different things, Lee. One directly effects the governance of the state, the other merely wants “the State” to be successful.
    Not all Democrats are “liberal” nor are all Republicans “conservative”. It’s too simple minded to think that:
    A) Everybody follows party lines
    B) Everybody agrees with every stated and unstated party objective
    C) People do not vary on single issues.
    Until you come up with an objective, qualified and agreeable definition for these quite useless terms, nobody should be forced to accept anything.

  20. Randy E

    Nathan, you too are grossly oversimplifying the issue which underscores a lack of critical thought. I am a democrat. I am against gay marriage and am pro-life. I identify with the democratic party because they are aligned with my other Christian ideals: concern for the poor, compassion for others (compassionate conservatism is a lark), concern for the environment, and the party demographics more closely resembles that of our country.
    The use of “liberal” or “lib” has become a tool for fascists to disparage the ideas and the people who have the gall to disagree with any fringe stance. For example, there is a neocon on this site who dismissed Bush and Graham and libs. That’s as distorted as suing someone for using another’s first name.

  21. tammy

    I see it the other way around. I’m a liberal and proud of it. Oftentimes, I would rather not be associated with the Dem party. I will always be a liberal. That is my core belief system…who I am…all the time.
    S.C. is home to few ‘true’ conservatives. A true conservative wouldn’t be concerned with issues that attack individual rights (such as the gay rights movement) or shoving one religion down the throats of others via government. Do you or don’t you want “smaller government”?
    Gay marriage, abortion, sex offenders, religion and other wedge issues are tools used by the republican party to get ignorant people, who are willing to sacrifice their own well being (healthcare, public schools,) to vote for their candidates.
    True conservatives are loving the republicans because they are willing to follow. They’ve got quite the racket going on…especially in S.C.

  22. Lee

    Oh, and the Democrats and their special interest groups don’t use the promotion of homosexuality, pornography, abortion and hatred of religion as their wedge issues to raise funds and get out the vote of their radical base?
    Socialists are the aggressors. The majority of people are just trying to defend their peaceful way of life from these ideological thugs.

  23. Lee

    Hitler knew how to deal with such riff raff effectively. Ann Coulter and Karl Rove are using him as a model. Soon enough the liberal left will be as pure as us – free from homosexuality and pornography. They will find God and will show God’s love like Ann Coulter has by cutting spending for the poor so the rich get what they deserve, the taxes they pay. I know because I saw it on the internet.

  24. Aaron

    “Socialists are the aggressors. The majority of people are just trying to defend their peaceful way of life from these ideological thugs.”
    I am a socialist and a pacifist, so you’re full of crap. I also hate Democrats for being right wing. Stop simplifying beyond your limited understanding.

  25. Lee

    Maybe, instead of Conservatives, we should be called Preservatives for trying to preserve the progress made by America from the socialists who want to destroy it, with the help of their non-thinking “liberal” and “moderate” fellow travelers.
    Socialism has no place for pacifists, except as a screen to obtain power. Socialism is agressively militaristic externally, and uses institutionalized violence to suppress dissent internally. Socialism might let the mob express itself by voting on whom to victimize next, but it doesn’t tolerate being replaced by any system of individual liberty and limitiations on state power.

  26. Nathan

    Let me explain to you my idea of conservatism and where it does and doesn’t fit in with the GOP (just to show some critical thought, you know).
    This gay marriage constitutional amendment thing is bogus. I don’t like it much, but think that we should ensure that gay marriage can’t be forced on states. If Massachusetts wants it, fine. I just don’t want the US or SC to recognize it. That is what we call state’s rights. That said, the reason that they are pushing this amendment is because liberal activist judges keep making crazy rulings trying to cram thier ideology down our throats.
    I am pro-life, and believe that abortion should be illegal, except in some pretty extreme cases (rape, incest, extreme danger to mother’s life). There are some things that just shouldn’t be allowed in a civilized society. The killing of babies is one of them.
    As for compassionate conservatism, studies always show that more conservative states are more generous with charity. I believe that the poor and downtrodden can be taken care of by the charity of others through churches and non-profits. The left believes that we need to force others to give money to big gov’t programs that waste half of it and give the rest to the poor and downtrodden.
    As for religion, it seems that Christianity is being oppressed by the gov’t in the name of separation of church and state (which doesn’t appear in the Constitution). You can force kids to read Muslim prayers in a school classroom, but you have to ban red and green plates at the “winter holiday” ceremony because it is too Christian. We need people on the bench who actually read the Constitution before ruling, rather than acting as a super-legislature that just makes up laws as they go along.
    For the record, much is often made of conservatives “voting against thier own self-interests”. Supposedly, we should want the gov’t to give us free stuff and vote for Democrats who will make that happen at the expense of those that they deem rich. I know that I vote Republican because I don’t believe in a gov’t that plays Robin Hood, even if I benefit. It is called principles.

  27. Aaron

    “Socialism has no place for pacifists, except as a screen to obtain power. Socialism is agressively militaristic externally, and uses institutionalized violence to suppress dissent internally. ”
    Uh, no it doesn’t. France and Britain are less violent than the USA, so that’s just a pile of garbage.
    “Socialism might let the mob express itself by voting on whom to victimize next, but it doesn’t tolerate being replaced by any system of individual liberty and limitiations on state power.”
    Socialism is the fulfilment of individual liberty – free speech, free press, freedom from suffering, freedom from starvation etc. Liberalism (in the true sense) only does the first, communism does the second (badly, I might add), socialism does both.
    “This gay marriage constitutional amendment thing is bogus.”
    I disagree with the idea of “activist judges” because, well, they’re conservative, but I do think it’s a dumb issue. Let each state decide, I am big on that.
    “I am pro-life, and believe that abortion should be illegal, except in some pretty extreme cases”
    The majority of abortions are performed on blobs of matter, not babies. And why are some babies worthy of dying in some circumstances but not others? If you’re going to be pro-life, then you shouldn’t distinguish (at least on the grounds that innocent beings are killed).
    I’m personally in the middle, but my arguments are always for society and not law to change – only by encouraging people to be responsible for their actions, using birth control and refraining from outright promiscuouity can we hope to challenge these issues. The majority of abortions are performed on married women though, which has its own problems.
    “As for compassionate conservatism, studies always show that more conservative states are more generous with charity.”
    I would argue it’s because charity is so desperately needed compared to other places – basically, conservative states really are scraping the barrel (not that liberal states are havens of wonder).
    “As for religion, it seems that Christianity is being oppressed by the gov’t in the name of separation of church and state (which doesn’t appear in the Constitution).”
    I don’t think it’s being victimised, I just think people cannot seem to cope with a variety of freedoms that conflict (freedom of religion, speech). Businesses are definitely buying into it, and you get the occasional govt. story, but people dramatise it more than anything. Unless Christians wanted to stop freedom of religion, they cannot have their prayer enforced in schools – same as the pledge and regards to free speech. They’re contradictory.
    “Supposedly, we should want the gov’t to give us free stuff and vote for Democrats who will make that happen at the expense of those that they deem rich. I know that I vote Republican because I don’t believe in a gov’t that plays Robin Hood, even if I benefit. It is called principles.”
    What principles? That rich spoilt kids who’ve never worked a day in their life should inherit a mega-fortune, while people who work two jobs shouldn’t get healthcare? Society is everybody, not just the rich and that is what shocks me about Republicans. Rich people need electricians and plumbers and refusemen far more than those guys need another suit in an office.
    The rich get taxed progressively less than poor people, get tons of tax breaks, and worst of all just a meagre 1% own something like 60% of America. If they have ridiculous amounts of money, then they owe society (that got them that money) and they should return it with taxes. Republicans, the rich man’s party, of course don’t want that, and merely use emotional issues to appeal to the poor. Wonderful technique.
    I do think there are good conservative arguments; I do not think any are found in the Republican Party.

  28. Dave

    Aaron, it is obvious you dont spend much time looking at the SC progressive income tax tables. Your comment is comical. Especially in a nation where 10% of the population pays 80% of ALL income taxes. The poor actually get a tax check, called the negative income tax. Tax welfare is what I call it.

  29. Ready to Hurl

    One thing has always puzzled me about people (like Nathan above) who think that abortion is “the killing of babies.”
    How do you live with yourself?
    If I truly believed that thousands of people were being murdered (as living people were killed in Nazi concentration camps) then I’d be forced to take action. You’ve tolerated what you view as legalized mass murder for decades.
    But, then, what do I know? I’m just a “Godless liberal.”
    BTW, the belief that Christianity is “oppressed” in the US; or, in SC, in particular, is beyond laughable. Christianity is “oppressed” only in the eyes of people who want it to be the religion of the state, either de facto or de jeur.
    PS The “War on Christmas” is just another fabrication of the wingnut media. It’s easy to spot FNC viewers. They’re the ones who unquestioninlgy spout such BS.

  30. Lee

    Are Frenchmen and Britons less violent than Americans of French and British ancestry, or are you tossing in the high crime rates of illegal aliens, African-Americans and others who have not been assimilated into the culture of Western capitalism and representative government?
    The next time you see Americans stomping each other to death at a football game, as they do in socialist England, let us know. Crime in London is far worse than in New York City, rising with each disarming of the honest population through “gun control”.

  31. Dave

    Our commander-in-chief braved danger today and flew directly into the Iraq battle zone. If that was Kerry as president, and he got a paper cut signing his autograph, he would self apply for a purple heart. I think W went over there to personally take out the “new” Al Qaeda leader. Oh wait, AQ isnt in Iraq are they? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
    Bush’s ratings are soaring upward. OOOOOOOOOORAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH.

  32. Aaron

    “Aaron, it is obvious you dont spend much time looking at the SC progressive income tax tables. ”
    Anybody who does leads a sad life.
    “Your comment is comical. Especially in a nation where 10% of the population pays 80% of ALL income taxes. The poor actually get a tax check, called the negative income tax. Tax welfare is what I call it. ”
    If there was a better system designed to give everyone what they actually were worth, it wouldn’t be needed. The 10% of the population own MORE than 80% of stuff, which means they are paying LESS than most poor people on a sliding scale of their wealth.
    “Are Frenchmen and Britons less violent than Americans of French and British ancestry, or are you tossing in the high crime rates of illegal aliens, African-Americans and others who have not been assimilated into the culture of Western capitalism and representative government?”
    African-Americans have been in America as long as white Americans, so that’s crap.
    Unless you’re arguing Britain and France are superior because of our ethnicity, but that’s also crap because of our mass immigration and small groups of people – France has recently had problems, but nothing America hasn’t outshone in recent history.
    “The next time you see Americans stomping each other to death at a football game, as they do in socialist England, let us know.”
    That doesn’t happen anymore. Next time we shoot a President we don’t like, and have major white collar criminals like at Enron, let us know.
    The majority of crime is done by white people, shock horror.
    “Crime in London is far worse than in New York City, rising with each disarming of the honest population through “gun control”.
    No, it isn’t, but ok. You feel it in your gut.

  33. tammy

    “If Massachusetts wants it, fine. I just don’t want the US or SC to recognize it. That is what we call state’s rights.”
    Well, the last time I checked…I’m in S.C. too. And have the same rights as an AMERICAN citizen that you do. I don’t understand the selfish conceit that it has to be YOUR way. Just because YOU don’t want it. It’s not YOUR country. Or YOUR state. It’s OURS.
    Cheers to the US Constitution.
    State’s rights…if that were the case…we’d still have slavery…back in the 60s the christians of the day claimed the Bible said the black man was inferior to the white man and that was why they weren’t equal. Funny, the Bible says so much about American politics…
    thank God for the activist judges that came in and saved the rights of blacks. As they will eventually do for gay americans.
    Religion is a personal choice. Regardless of which religion it is. I don’t discriminate when I say I don’t care if your Tom Cruise and Scientology or a Mormom with 5 wives or a southern baptist or a muslim or devotetd to Dr. Phil everyday. I’m happy for you that you have guidance in your life. But your idea of guidance and mine is probably much different. Therefore, none of it has a place in government. And I have no intention of joining you on your religious crusade and I don’t want you on mine…we’re going to have to find a way to make our government work for both us.
    If we ever want our democracy to work…that’s the way it will have to be.
    It is such a JOKE that we are in Iraq trying to teach someone else about DEMOCRACY when we can’t get it here.

  34. Randy E

    President Bush is the brave one and Kerry would get a paper cut? Dave, do you giggle when you write this stuff? Where exactly were these two during the Vietnam War? You don’t have to like Kerry’s policies nor him as a person, but the man was serving our country risking his life. W was taking flying lessons in Texas and Alabama. When you make light of his service, you make light of veterans.
    The 9th grader who is posted that statement in your place Dave is in big trouble for identity theft.

  35. Nathan

    Tammy, I know it is OUR country, and the vast majority in OUR country agree that gay marriage shouldn’t be legal.
    As for the abortionists above, RTH and Aaron, can you pinpoint for me when you think that life is important enough to be preserved? I believe that abortion is wrong because that “blob” is a child, even if it doesn’t have arms and legs yet. I make exceptions because I understand that there are extreme circumstances. I wouldn’t agree with an abortion under any circumstance, but I would understand.
    I can’t stand when people try to strip Christians of thier religious influence before they discuss government. We are all affected by our religion, or lack thereof. To say that there is no place for Christian thinking in government ignores that this is a government for the people and by the people. The “the people” just happen to mostly be Christian.

  36. Randy E

    The fetus has arms and legs very early on. The baby has a very good chance of living on it’s own after 6 months. There are laws that include extra consequences for harm to a fetus when a pregnant woman is harmed.
    I think as a country we have created a real contradiction on this issue.
    When you see the image of a 5 month fetus (baby) sticking his tongue out or sucking his thumb, it’s hard to find justification for not considering this a life.

  37. Aaron

    “As for the abortionists above, RTH and Aaron, can you pinpoint for me when you think that life is important enough to be preserved?”
    I’m not an “abortionist”. I have been accused of pro-lifism frequently by people because I tend to sway towards a pro-life stance more than pro-choice.
    As to the question of when does human life gain its importance, I say it’s always important. I consider pregnancy and the effect of the mother as points to where you have two contradictory notions of life, either the sanctity or quality. Making a rape victim continue with pregnancy is barbaric; a secure woman who can afford it is different. I don’t have an absolute stance because they’re always too limiting.
    “I can’t stand when people try to strip Christians of thier religious influence before they discuss government. ”
    Again, you’re missing the point, especially where I am absolutely against the stupid “separation of church and state”. My interpretation of the First Amendment is literally that no law can be made to benefit one religion above any other – i.e. school prayer. If Bush finds his faith a useful guide, go for it, but if you have no other reason to do anything, then it’s obvious the ideal/law/plan was religiously influenced and that is wrong. Religion is an indicator or guide, not the reason behind things.
    “I think as a country we have created a real contradiction on this issue.”
    We generally think it works on what the mother wants – if she wanted the child, it’s bad, if she didn’t want it, it’s ok. I do wish people would stop thinking abortions occur mostly after 5-6 months, when they nearly all happen within 1-3 when it doesn’t look like anything.

  38. tammy

    most of us think this…most of are this…most of believe this…most of us eat chicken…
    SO WHAT? Most of S.C. is OBESE? Do I have to join that cause as well?

  39. Lee

    Majority rule…concensus…normalcy…. so what, says tammy.
    Since when did the woman killing her unborn child become “the mother”?
    Since when did socialists behind the Eugenics Movement start holding up the will of the mother as having value? The abortion movement began as an idea of modern socialists and liberals, as forced sterilization and abortions imposed upon Asians and blacks.

  40. Randy E

    Aaron, 1-3 months when “it” doesn’t look like anything is besides the point I was making. The pro-choice argument made by many (that’s for you Tammy) is based on the principle that a fetus is part of a woman’s body and no one should be in the business of telling a woman what to do with her body.
    My point in the previous post is that at 6 months you have a life entity (baby) that is capable of living on it’s own. To me, that is contrary to the idea that it is merely a woman’s body, but a separate body and the justification for choice along those lines is diminished.
    The debate then becomes much more convoluted because IF you take the 6 month date, which is not rigid, into account. We are debating taking a life and establishing when it’s a life vs woman’s rights in regards to her body, in effect.
    This is a very important distincition in this debate because of the following: I propose that if a criminal injured a pregnant woman causing a miscarriage many women who favor choice would be angry about the loss. If this same woman chose an abortion these pro-choice women would not be angry. Why? Because it violated the woman’s choice and not because of the loss of the fetus (baby).

  41. Randy E

    I think we’ve opened a can and Brad will need to start a new thread just for this.
    Please note that I made an effort not to be inflamatory, but offer up a detailed debate.

  42. tammy

    honestly, i don’t even argue abortion with these people anymore. The people against abortion are the same ones whining that we shouldn’t tell teenagers to put condoms on to protect themselves from pregnancy orlife threatening diseases. As usual…they offer no solutions. Just stop abortion and all the other problems of the world will go away. (If I could insert an eye roll there, I would).
    Roe v. Wade will never be overturned. I just let them spend time yapping about it while I work on other stuff.
    Have I been inflamatory? Are we not supposed to be? Sorry Brad… 🙂 t
    I’m going home to see if Brad changed the tide of the election like Katon Dawson claims! hehe.
    be good everyone. bigger issues in the world than abortion and gay marriage.
    😉 t

  43. Randy E

    Tammy, morals are a big issue. All these issues are tied in with our morals to some degree. Morality is a fundamental component of humanity.
    Offer solutions? How about dealing with the morality of our young people. We can work with teens to practice abstinence. After all, prevention is an effective approach to dealing with problems. Why is providing condoms, which students have access to but often don’t use, the panacea?

  44. Brad Warthen

    FYI, I just sent this out to both “Lees” under the heading, “Oh, Behave:”
    Come on, Ted, cut it out with the making fun of Lee.
    I haven’t banned anybody from the blog yet. Not even Mary Rosh. Don’t make me start with you.
    Sorry about that, Lee.
    — Brad Warthen

  45. Lee

    Yessss sirrrr.
    Lee, I’m sorry I make fun of your fascist and mean-spritited ways.
    I’ll slink off into the dark never to be heard from again.

  46. Dave

    Randy, good sound thinking. Abortion rates have actually been decreasing over the past few years. Abstinence and self control is the true answer. The kids today have their whore-mongering role models in Hollywood showing them the way to promiscous activity, let alone nightly network TV and MTV. But all morality begins with treasuring the life of innocent unborns. It’s funny but there are economic reasons for promoting pro-life when one understands that older generations need younger generations to sustain the economy.

  47. Randy E

    Hey everyone, I just got back from crossing over to vote for some Republicans. I took Brad’s ed-op page column summarizing their endorsements with me and voted for everyone on his list. 😉

  48. Randy E

    See Dave, there is common ground to be found. There are other democrats that are pro-life and there are republicans that are pro-choice. It’s not as simple as us vs them.

  49. tammy

    Morals are a big issue? Who said they weren’t? YOu have your ideas and I have mine.
    Here’s a solution for abortion. It doesn’t belong in politics. It never has. It was put there to get people to fight over an issue they know nothing about. Scroll back up and read the examples for yourselves.
    “We can work with teens to practice abstinence.” Good luck with that. I’ve been waiting for the major changes abstinence supporters keep promising…I believe if we could make teens understand the seriousness of sex instead of threatening hell and damnation for sex out of wedlock…we’d get a little bit further in this state.
    🙂 t

  50. Randy E

    “…abortion and gay marriage” are moral issues for the majority of Americans.
    Threatening with damnation is a gross oversimplification of the morality aspects of this issue. Living a life of faith is not simply avoiding Hell.
    You offered up a suggestion, focusing on the health aspects, to educate the teens. This is used and can be used more effectively.
    It does belong in government and politics given that the fetus at some point becomes a baby – a person and the government protects its people.

  51. tammy

    Randy, abortion is a horrible thing and a horrible choice for any woman to be forced with. I don’t think anyone condones it. But until this nation comes up with realistic measures to control it…I really don’t care what any of you say. You can preach all day and talk about a fetus and its rights…but at the end of the day…your preaching isn’t changing a thing. God or morals isn’t going to change the use of abortion as birth control…prevention education is. And I don’t mean putting a ring on your finger at a Wednesday night church service vowing you’re not going to have sex until you’re married. I’m talking REALISTIC preventive sex EDUCATION.

  52. Randy E

    Tammy, I’m not suggesting morality is a realistic panacea for stopping all teenage pregnancies, but do we give up on these morals because they’re not 100% foolproof?
    I find it disheartening that we think the only way to stop abortion is by purely scaring teens with photos of genitalia infected with Herpes.
    Morality and Faith are effective for a large number of teens. The sexual activity rate for teens is not 100%. It’s not less than 100% purely because of a lack of opportunity.
    I agree with the need for a comprehensive approach, but I believe it starts with health and moral education for prevention.
    Access to abortion does not have to result in abortion being the only course of action for planned parenthood. In Russia a few years ago, abortion was the method of choice because that was the standard. Clearly, the US is at a different place on this issue so the discussion is warranted.

  53. Randy E

    As RtH pointed out, Brad’s sinister plot to overthrow the GOP failed.
    When Jim Rex is elected on a platform of save our public schools (as is) from the evil plans of Karen Floyd to ciphon off money, don’t forget old Brad Warthen told you so. Staton would have forced Rex to generate more meaningful plans for reform.
    I say “old” because he referred to Floyd’s legs as “pins.” I’m not sure if he heard Fonzie or Ralph Mouth use that term, but it pretty well dates him. Atleast Brad gets to peek at her “pins” for another 5 months.

  54. tammy

    Yes…it failed. 🙁
    Have you seen “Citizen Ruth”? A great film about the abortion debate in America. Focuses on how both sides leave the woman and fetus/potential baby behind in the quest for the fight for and against abortion. Great film.
    When I look back on my teen years, I personally don’t recollect my faith being what made me refrain from sex. I was a teen in the 80’s. I went to see those guys that got out of prison and encouraged teens to burn AC/DC and Night Ranger albums. I did it because it seemed cool. Not because I was moved or anything. I did it simply because everyone else did…and d*mn I’d like to have those albums back now…
    guess all I’m saying is abortion is hard. A lot of responsibility comes with the issue. Should the American government take on legislating morality and faith? I think not. I think with a sound education we can help individuals find one, even both for themselves therefore affecting all negative things on our society–abortion, crime, etc.
    Ralph Mouth…hehe. All I gotta say…is GO JIM REX.
    take care,
    🙂 t

  55. Dave

    Randy – it is encouraging to hear from a pro-life democrat. You must really feel like a minority player as they are few and far between, but there is always hope.

    Abortion is a lose-lose proposition, with many women who have had abortions suffering longterm psychological scars and guilt throughout their lives.

  56. Randy E

    Dave, while you agree with my stance on this issue, there are many republicans,Specter for example, who disagree with you. This shows the problem with labelling democrats as “libs” and taking an us versus them approach to discussion in here.

  57. Ready to Hurl

    I’m still waiting for the anti-abortion folks who seriously believe that abortion is “murdering babies” to explain how they live with their consciences.
    Here’s the irony that points to the true goals of the anti-abortion folk: they steadfastly refuse to encourage the practical birth control methods which would eliminate the demand for many abortions.
    For instance, recently the Bush Administration torpedoed allowing the sale of the “morning after” pill. Why? Because the Christian fundamentalists are (and have been since the 60’s) actually opposed to birth control of any sort.
    Fundies (and many Catholics) view sex as the Original Sin which should happen only for procreation. Following this logic any human prevention of fertilization after coitus is sinning against God. In their eyes it doesn’t matter whether the couple are married or Hindu or single or Muslim or gay– circumventing “God’s will” is a sin.
    Maybe some of you supposed “libertarians” ought to wake up and realize that the fundie Christian political power in the GOP is based on the government’s ability to impose fundie Christian precepts on everyone. They may avoid overtly imposing a “national religion” in order to technically avoid being ruled unconstitutional but he result will be the same.

  58. Randy E

    RtH, Catholic dogma does NOT state that sex can be engaged in ONLY for procreation. I’m sorry, but that’s an ignorant interpretation. John Paul even stated that for married couples sex should be fun.
    Don’t use the actions of a minority of Christian conservatives who seem to try to impose their version of Chritian morality to generalize all of us.
    The moral issue involved in abortion and planned parenthood is too important to be oversimplified. Faith and morality are not based on practicality nor convenience.

  59. Ready to Hurl

    Randy, I’m not Catholic so I’m not going to try and argue official Catholic dogma concerning sex or the supposed theological basis for opposing “artificial birth control.” I’ll take your word that Pope John Paul said that “for married couples sex should be fun.”
    I will note that “sex for fun,” even for married couples, seems to be relatively new stance for the Catholic Church.
    The following excerpt from coincides with my (admittedly skimpy) understanding of the Catholic Church’s position on “artificial” birth control.
    “The religion Catholicism does not believe in any means of artificial birth control. Artificial birth control includes condoms and the pill. The Catholic approved form of family planning is known as Natural Family Planning. It is believed that artificial birth control takes away the sacred element of intercourse.
    What about the amount of children? The Catholic Church does not want you to have more children than you can afford. However the Church wants sex to remain special and with a purpose. NFP is proven to be as effective as artificial birth control.
    As a side note, some birth control pills can also cause abortions without the mother knowing. They do not allow the fertilized egg to implant.” [emphasis added]
    So, as I understand it, the prohibition against artificial birth control starts on one end of a continuum with the Pope prohibiting even using condoms for birth control. Protestant fundies might think that condoms would be OK for birth control (but probably only available to married couples). Meanwhile, both would likely oppose oral contraception because a fertilized egg might not be allowed to attach to the uterus wall– which they would term an “abortion” of essentially one cell.
    My ultimate point is that the fundie religious groups are intent on using governmental power to impose their precepts on all U.S. citizens. They’re obviously starting by degrees: banning so-call partial-birth abortions; then out-lawing all abortions (with a few exceptions); later deleting those exceptions; and, eventually, making artificial birth control illegal.
    BTW, here’s a blog entry that you might find interesting concerning the recent experience of a current Catholic couple preparing for marriage.

  60. Randy E

    RtH, get this: the Catholic church doesn’t preach against sex for a married woman who have gone through menopause nor one who can not conceive. Those are clear situations where procreation is not possible but sex is still supported as part of a marriage.
    In fact, sex inolves more than fertility: “It aims at a deeply personal unity, a unity that, beyond the union in one flesh, leads to forming one heart and soul;” Fertility is the primary focus, but not the only.
    There is a move to ban abortions. Banning birth control through passing laws is not an issue I have studied, but I find that to be quite a reach. There are groups trying to impose their will through law in many different areas. My point is not to make blanket charges that oversimplify the issues.
    I don’t get my news from Fox nor CNN because I believe they’re partisan. I won’t bother with that site you shared because it’s clearly partisan.

  61. Ready to Hurl

    Randy, if you don’t see the irony of getting the high sign for sex with your post-menopausal wife then you’ve had a different experience than me.
    Yep, the link was to a “partisan”– and unabashedly scatalogical– site. Nevertheless, I don’t think that they make things up out of whole cloth.
    Oh, well.
    BTW, what evidence of partisanship does CNN display?

  62. Brad Warthen

    Couple of things for Lee:
    I am not only fine with voting in both primaries, I think it is unconscionable that it is forbidden in this and other states. That’s why I have advocated changing the law here for years. Anything I say in that regard should certainly be presented and understood in that context. Anything else means disenfranchisement. Do you have any idea how many primary contests last week WERE the election? To help you understand what that means, please note the case of one of my colleagues, who vote in the Republican primary (as I believe she usually does, but I don’t ask; what I know is that most of the candidates she was interested in were there), and bemoaned the fact that she didn’t get to pick her county council representative (she’s in Kit Smith’s district).
    At an even last night, the son of Cleveland Sellers was introduced to a crowd as “Representative-elect” because HE faces no opposition in the fall.
    We have been deliberately drawing district lines, ever more aggressively since the Bush administration, to make “Republican seats” safe for Republicans and “Democratic seats” safe for Democrats.
    These seats don’t belong to the parties; they belong to the people, and none of the people should be denied the right to choose who will represent them in those districts. To force people to choose which election they can vote in and which they are barred from is an outrage.
    Now let’s look at this “out of state media conglomerate” we’ve been celebrating. It happens to be one that believes in leaving the papers alone. Knight Ridder, which used to be that way, had deteriorated in recent years to where it obsessively tried to control every aspect of our business (except, thank God, editorial). McClatchy is also shielded from market fluctuations to the point that its management won’t keep making us cut resources, another favorite hobby of KR in recent years. So you bet we’re celebrating; we’re being rescued. No it’s not as good as me owning the paper myself, but you saw my appeals for help with that, and nobody coughed up the $400 million.
    Oh, one more thing you obviously don’t understand. This does not involve “out of state money” coming to South Carolina. THEY don’t send US money; we send THEM money. Lots of it. That’s why they bought us. It’s called capitalism. If we have more resources here, it won’t be because they gave us money; it will be because they let us keep more of what we earned, right here.

  63. bud

    Brad, it’s funny how conservatives are all for capitalism until it works against their interests. The best example of that is rising gasoline prices. I’m sure we’ll hear more right-wing proposals for government interference in the market the next time gasoline prices go up sharply.

  64. Lee

    Do you think the GOP should be able to show up at the Democratic Party conventions and help choose their candidates?
    One reason we cannot have an effective third party in America is because the two major parties will sabotage any primary.
    Right now, Democrats in Congress have legislation to fund their party with taxpayer money, and forbid third-party and independent candidates from receiving any such funding, and from spending private funds. If you you want something to clean up in elections, there is plenty of corruption already, including media participation in dirty tricks.

  65. Ready to Hurl

    Where ever Bud’s ten points are, I’d like to add a couple.
    (1) Immediately mandate that broadcast media be required to give each serious candidate* a total of four 15-minute segments of airtime in the three weeks prior to an election or primary. Each candidate in a general election should be required to answer on-air questions from the public and the media for 30 minutes.
    *”Serious candidates” might be defined as a candidate who collects a certain number of signatures on a petition to get them on the ballot.
    (2) Institute a state-level board similar to the base-closing commission who would be in charge of redistricting. At least 51% of the board members should not be members of either party.

  66. Lee

    One of the few things leftists learn in public school was to slander more their critics as a “racist”, “homophobe”, or some other slander.
    It doesn’t work when it is overused by brownshirts who don’t even know that racism is. But they don’t need specific facts, anyway, because they are just making up lies for the purpose of suppressing free exchange of political ideas.
    Most leftists, liberals and moderates are racists of varying degree, so they don’t understand why their lies carry so little weight against the rest of us who are not racist.

  67. Lee

    The second thing liberals learn in school is to keep those playground nonsense comebacks handy, when the smears and lies fail.
    When they accuse others of saying things that they were thinking, psycologists call this, “projection”. It is a phase of childhood. Use by liberals indicates they state of immaturity.

  68. Huh?

    Racism – “Discrimination or prejudice based on race.”
    Lee: “Most Hispanics are illegal aliens”
    Lee: “Since 70% of black children have only one or no parents, I know those biological parents don’t care.”
    Lee is a racist

  69. Lee

    Demographic facts are not “racist”, you dummy.
    If you don’t think the majority of violations of our immigration laws are by Latinos crossing the Mexican border, please give us some facts to contradict the Census Bureau, Border Patrol, INS, DHS, and other experts.
    Do you have some data to contradict the Census rate of illegitimate births among black Americans, please provide it.

  70. Huh?

    Racist statement #1: “Most Hispanics are illegal” is a prejudicial statement because it’s based on subjectiveness, not fact – the percent of illegals that are Hispanic vs the % of Hispanics that are illegals are not the same.
    Racist statement #2: “Since 70% of black children have only one or no parents, I know those biological parents don’t care.”
    I KNOW they don’t care is a subjective statement, once again.
    Lee face it, you are a racist and full of crap.

  71. Lee

    In 1996, Latinos comprised 91% of illegal aliens (4,650,000 of 5,000,000), with Mexico leading with 54% of illegals.
    In 2005, there were 21,000,000 illegal aliens, with 92% of of them from Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, Nicaraqua, and other Hispanic countries.
    Source: Bear Stearns Study of Immigration, Pew Trust Study on Immigration, US Census Current population surveys

  72. Lee

    Since 1970, out-of-wedlock birth rates have soared. In 1965, 24 percent of black infants and 3.1 percent of white infants were born to single mothers. By 1990 the rates had risen to 64 percent for black infants, 18 percent for whites. Every year about one million more children are born into fatherless families.
    Source = The Brookings Institution
    Consider that crucial social indicator, the illegitimacy rate. The longer Latinos are in the U.S., the more they assimilate … but not toward the white norm. Instead, they are becoming more like blacks. Currently, 22% of white births are illegitimate compared to 69% of black births. Among immigrant Latino mothers, 37% of their new babies were illegitimate. But among American-born Latino mothers, the illegitimacy rate rises to 48%.
    Source = National Center for Health Statistics on births in 1998 []

  73. Dave

    Liberal idiots look at every white person as racist by definition. That is because of the misguided guilt trip that liberals have about minorities since they truly believe minorities are intellectually inferior and need compassionate liberals to babysit them so they can survive. Then, when a hardworking and independent minority “makes it” as a success, like Clarence Thomas for example, the libs attack him as an Uncle Tom lackey. They cannot believe that a Thomas or a Powell actually accomplished their dream, especially as a Republican at that. But libs love to throw the racism charge as it makes them feel so self righteous. I find that the ones who throw that epithet around wouldn’t be caught dead living in an integrated neighborhood and send their kids to dominant white schools. Thankfully the American people for the most part have caught on to the Al Gores and Bill Clintons and their ilk and see the gross hypocrisy.

  74. Lee

    Liberals and progressives also buy into the notion that everyone shares their racism and other character flaws. They presume the rest of the world are “sinners” like themselves. Not so.
    Their prejudice and shame paralyzes them and renders them unable to assess problems objectively, and consequently, unable to solve an social problem.

  75. bud

    The out-wedlock birth rate is higher than ever but thanks to liberal policies regarding birth control the teen birth rate is way down.

  76. Lee

    Teen birth rates began falling with the passage of Newt Gingrich’s Welfare to Work. Stop rewarding misbehavior and … presto, chango!

  77. Huh?

    Lee, you are a racist. Your meaningless stats only reinforce that you are full of crap as well.
    Show me the data that supports your statement “Since 70% of black children have only one or no parents, I know those biological parents don’t care.”
    Dave, are you really agreeing with this quote that single black parents don’t care about their kids?

  78. Lee

    Bill Clinton twice vetoed the welfare reform bill which was part of the Contract with America, then signed it when he saw it had enough support to override a third veto. Now Clinton and his lying supporters claim credit for getting people off welfare and reducing bastardy.
    Certainly many black parents care for their children. The problem is that 70% of black children DON’T HAVE PARENTS raising them.

  79. Huh?

    “Certainly many black parents care for their children. The problem is that 70% of black children DON’T HAVE PARENTS raising them.” – Lee
    “Since 70% of black children have only one or no parents, I know those biological parents don’t care.” – Lee
    These quotes are contradictory. If anything, you are appear to be trying to wiggle out of your racist statement.

  80. Lee

    You don’t understand basic concepts of a family having TWO PARENTS, and 70% of black children having one or zero parents in the house where they live. That’s not my opinion. That’s the facts, Jack.

  81. Huh?

    Single black parents “don’t care about their kids” is not a fact. It’s a subjective conclusion based on racist perception.
    Lee, plain and simple, you are a racist.

  82. Lee

    Yes, it is my opinion that parents who care about their children would not abandon them. Apparently I have a bit higher standards than some liberals.
    Do these “liberals” have the same low expectations for white parents?

  83. Huh?

    Lee, you are a full of crap racist.
    Inferring that black parents “don’t care about their kids” because of the percent of single parents in that population is an ignorant, reckless, and giant leap.
    Keep trying to justify that racism.

  84. Lee

    What do you infer when both parents abandon their child?
    Or when the single parent is drunk or high all the time?
    Why are you so hell bent on defending the destruction of the black family? Seems awful racist and hateful to me. At least most liberals claim they didn’t know their social experiment would fail this badly.

  85. Huh?

    Does the 70% include ONLY both parents abandoning the kids or single parents that are drunk or high?
    Maybe one or both parents died.
    Maybe it was merely a divorce.
    Maybe it’s a single mother who’s putting in the effort to raise her child.
    The only one defending anything is a racist who has included those listed above in his hateful, racist remarks about black parents.

  86. Lee

    Sound like you didn’t bother to read any of the reports on the disintegration of the black family, so you just ask questions to be disruptive. Why do the facts upset you so much? Would 69% or 59% of abnormal home life be fine with you?


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