This site is meant to facilitate the upward flow of information to help our elected officials stay in touch with those they represent. Also as a means to help us (the voters) help our leaders lead.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Conservative Duty.

As a Conservative I know it is my duty to protect my Individual Freedoms. By doing that I help protect other peoples Individual Freedoms. From this our Country remains strong. This concept is a true “Bottom Up” concept.

The only key to letting this work in a way that will benefit society at large is the ability of myself to self regulate the use of my Individual Freedom. Hence my belief in Conservative Principles to help guide my use of my Individual Freedoms.
We wrote a Constitution that guarantees my right to do that. We enumerated the limited role government has in that regard. We stated those limited roles specifically to insure that the government didn’t overstep and limit our Individual Freedoms.

In this blog I will show on a practical side things I can do that help protect my Individual Freedom. Those ways are simply based on the idea above that if I use some of my Individual Freedoms so that others can better use theirs, a better society results.

I recently blogged about a person in our party who bought a gleaners truck of 10,000 lbs of food and distributed it for less than $1,000. He did this for his wife who wanted to do it as a nice thing to do. Also as a way to help give a lesson in sharing and helping, to her family.

How is this different from the government giving out food in our name? Seems obvious. The donation for the food was voluntary in every sense. The effort to distribute and set up the whole thing was done by individuals (without pay) out not only out of a desire to help their fellow citizens get a little ahead, but to somehow help themselves. I realize that a bag of groceries in itself will not allow someone to get out of a hole, but maybe the thought will. Maybe those doing the giving will also get more connected to the problem and be able to better decide in the future what can and what shouldn’t be done to help.

I’m not saying to scrap food stamps. What I’m saying is I want to do what I can to make it common knowledge that “Individual” people can and should be “Free” to do what they feel best doing. The best way with what little I have is to do that by example.

I have been talking with Our New County Leadership along those lines. There is real support there. I do not claim to be the instigator of this but I want to help facilitate it to the best of my ability. I would like to take this a step further and instead of just finding individuals with the necessary money. I would like to see a few small active fundraisers with volunteers to help spread the word and create a buzz about the Republican Gleaners Truck load food give away. Either way it will be a good thing.

We need to build our base and this type of activity is a great way to show new Republican what we stand for. Give them AND us a way to show our Party Colors.

This type of thing could become regular. Off that working platform we could do other types of things. Toys for Tots, Blood Drives, a lot of ideas come to mind.

I know about shoveling snow as this last blizzard taught me. It finally broke me. Luckily it all just melted. I do know that I would feel good if I could help some other person who is “Broke”. I would like to get a group of hardy youth to help shovel some sidewalks. Maybe do some leaf raking. I know this is a stretch and not very Republican especially for “old White Men” like myself. But if we find the volunteers it would be up to us to facilitate the project as best we can.

Plenty of things are possible, let your mind at least be “Free”. This is what this blog is all about. At the base of all Freedom is the Freedom of thought. Let us all think Freely for a change, about what we can do, not why we shouldn’t.

As always feel free to contact me about anything along these lines.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Bob Carr

Monday, December 29, 2008

Taxi Anyone ???

Recently I read the article linked below. The Governor of Oregon is getting behind the idea of doing away with the gas tax in favor of a mileage tax.
A plan is in the works to enable gas stations to charge per mile you drive not by how many gallons you put in your tank. The reason for this is that Americans in this current financial crisis are doing what the government has been claiming they need to do. Cut down on gasoline usage. We are buying more fuel efficient cars, and driving less. We are finding ways to not drive as much, and make better use of those miles we do drive. Ie Before we pick up our kids at baseball practice we stop and do our shopping. That kind of thing.

We Americans have heeded the call to lower our environmental footprint by using our own initiative and creativeness. The government in typical fashion seems to think they will not get as much money coming into the state to be able to keep the roads maintained. They are probably right. They also are looking to the future. What if we end up switching to electric cars, or a breakthrough in the current combustion engine allows 100 mpg? The state of Oregon recognizes the reality of the situation. For that I would applaud them.

But I totally disagree with their plan to solve the problem. Instead of charging people who are trying desperately to save money and that are doing everything they are being told to do along environmental lines; why not reward them by finding another method.

Instead of spending 20 million on a study, then who knows how much more to set up another bureaucracy to manage and enforce it. We could always just raise the gas tax. The logic escapes me unless it is just another power grab by the government to control how we spend what little money we have.

Politicians have been falling over themselves to force auto makers and consumers to produce and buy greener automobiles. They offer tax incentives to the makers and consumers to build and buy such vehicles. I guess this “mileage tax” is a way for the state to get back the money they gave out in the first place. Kind of like robbing Peter Paul and Mary to keep the money themselves.

I admit I don’t know the exact numbers, but it seems like a lot of double talk to give someone a tax rebate to buy a more fuel efficient car, (let’s say $2,000) and then make us pay it back 1.2 cents for every mile that we drive it. I wonder how long before I start to lose money for buying that fuel efficient car? Don’t forget that there will be extra costs incurred by the manufacturer to install these devices and also extra costs to the gas station owners to install the readers. These costs will be passed along to us also, one way or another.

Getting back to my whole idea that the government should be a helpmate to the citizens that elect it, and not a hindrance; why not just raise the gas tax in the short term. Either way the government will get more money to keep the roads intact. By raising the gas tax it will save the money it takes to set up the infrastructure to do what the Oregon Governor is proposing.

Raising the gas tax would also have another benefit. It would be a more transparent way for the government and the people to see where the money goes. Perhaps that might facilitate our effort to make government more cost effective, and not put up another screen around how the money gets spent.

As we wean ourselves off of the gasoline engine we will have to eventually go to a different model, perhaps a kilowatt tax, but that kind of thing is already in place, it would have to be changed to differentiate between electric transportation and other electric uses. We will know more and be able to see the options later if and when that need arises.

I live in Michigan and I’m just glad that our Governor is busy in Washington trying to lobby herself into a cabinet position, or I’m sure she would be jumping on this bandwagon too.

Well if Hillary can say “It takes a village” and the media goes "ga ga" over it. I guess I can say “It takes a horse and buggy”. Maybe the pooper scooper union will go "ga ga" over that.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Hi Dan, don’t worry about me giving up hope. I hope for a lot of things that I never get. You may be too young to remember Rachael Welch. Lol Anyway Obama showed us that we all like to hope for better things. Just because I don’t get what I want doesn’t stop me from hoping to get it in the future. If, as Norm Shinkle told me, Ron Wiser is as good as Norm thinks, and that Norm will be working and giving input into Ron’s plans, all is not lost. I guess I’m still hoping for a Jack Hoogendyk victory, but I hope for the best in either case and as you’ve reminded me. If we want to get anything different done in this party we are the ones who need to do it. We’ll “make do, make it now, and make it work”.

This whole “Bottom Up” thing that I preach about is a long slow hands on process. A labor intensive process. Meeting new people one by one then trying to get them together, get everyone focused on a specific thing. In my case it is conservative ideas like hard work, responsibility, and family. All the social values that make that happen. Individual freedom is the cornerstone of my belief. Anything that furthers our individual freedom to do the hard work of making a better life for ourselves is good in my book.

It is my job not the government’s to decide what is best for me.

Here is a link about the National race for the Republican Chair.
We have some pretty good talent running. I don’t know who I would like as Chair, but that is not the point. Notice in the article
The candidates seized on Mr. Blackwell's lead-off question about how the party could beat Democrats at the "ground game," often with lengthy answers about reaching into "blue" districts, enlisting millions of online volunteers and engaging in The candidates seized on Mr. Blackwell's lead-off question about how the party could beat Democrats at the "ground game," often with lengthy answers about reaching into "blue" districts, enlisting millions of online volunteers and engaging in old-fashioned, machine-style precinct organizing.
I was happy to see that not just the internet was talked about. The part about “reaching into "blue" districts, enlisting millions of online volunteers and engaging in old-fashioned, machine-style precinct organizing.” I was happy to see.

We must remember that when we reach into “blue” precincts we must have a message and to do that we need old-fashioned, machine-style precinct organizing. One on one.

People like Wiser and our leaders at the County level sometimes seem to think that all we need to do is have an internet presence and we will rake in millions. Wiser alluded in amazement how much money Obama raised on line. He just couldn’t get away from the idea of this whole thing being about making money. Somehow the voters (the people) keep getting lost in the shuffle. Sometimes the leaders get lost in their priorities. Sometimes they can’t see the forest for the trees.

I try not to be too naïve or stupid. Sometimes I just can’t help it. Our party gets so caught up in the charts and graphs and power point presentations, that sometimes all they need is someone to state the obvious.
Our party is about one thing. Getting Votes come election time.
How do we do that?
1. Listen to people, find out what they want
2. Figure out how to get it to them, by using our Conservative message.
3. Actually do just that.
4. We do that in two ways Money and Deeds. The money is to help do the deeds and to let people know we are doing them and why. (Promotion), The main thing is doing the deeds. Getting personal with real people, in service orientated efforts. Whether it is fighting for a specific township proposal or putting on a blood drive or food drive etc.

Our County Meetings should be filled with recapping what different actions individual Precincts took in that regard the previous month. We should glory in the help we can give to our communities not scoff at or belittle them. The obvious remains.


So back to reality, thanks for the kind words. We should try to figure out a way to get something going. Maybe a political breakfast lunch or dinner for like minded people. How can we get Chris and your Community Service web effort moving? It looks to me like you two may have something good going. What about some type of fundraiser to help raise some of the scholarship money you want to give out? 3 heads are better than one to come up with ideas.

From the National to the Township, It is vital that once we find a volunteer we have something for them to do to keep them interested, something for them to start with so they can find their way in our Party.

Always willing to help if I can. Let me know. It is as you say, we will probably have to change the party on our own. Well now seems like a good time, perhaps the best time.

Regards Bob Carr
aka Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

PS. Say Dan I Think I’m going to put this up as a post on my blog, Bottom up Politics. Hope you don’t mind.

Have a Joyful Christmas and New Year.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

More Abounding Opportunities

Hope’s Outlets

Awhile back I blogged about Hope’s Outlets as my choice for donating my old paperback books.
Last night I attended our Muskegon County Executive Meeting. Our purpose was to elect a new group of officers and discuss whatever “new direction” we felt the party should go in.

During the second part a fellow I hadn’t met before stood up and said that he and his wife had a food gleaners truck coming and if we knew of anyone who was in need to let them know. I gave him my email and told him to give me the details. He did, below is his reply. Notice Hopes Outlet is mentioned. Small world huh?
We will be having a 10,000 lb. Gleaner Truck on December 27th, 2008 at 1:00 PM, at the SE corner of Airline and Pontaluna in Fruitport, Michigan.  I purchased the food truck through Tim Taber from Hopes Outlet on Glade Street in Muskegon as a birthday present for my wife Wendi.  She wanted our immediate families to have the opportunity to serve others, and possibly give all of us a better appreciation of how blessed we have been.

If you know of anyone who has a need, please let them know that we will be there then.  If you know of a shut-in, or someone or some family without adequate transportation within a reasonable distance, please get us their name and address and we will attempt to deliver a portion of the food to them.

Currently we believe that our immediate families’ have provided us with plenty of volunteers to distribute the food effectively and efficiently.  What we would really like your help with is making sure that families’ with real need are reached.  If you have additional questions I can be reached at my office at 231-799-1230, or at home at 231-865-3992.

Thank you for your consideration,

Bill and Wendi Cooper
What a wonderful thing this couple is doing. This is so pure that I was taken aback. This was not done with political ends in sight. This was already a done deal before our meeting.
I have a friend (Marion) who runs the “other” neighborhood assoc. The Nelson Community Assoc. which I have blogged about before. I just helped him go around and solicit donations to his group from business’ downtown for his “luminaries” on Christmas Eve. You know the candles that are downtown Christmas Eve along the street. The luminaries and a parking lot for The Seaway Festival are the 2 fundraisers he holds to keep the food pantry he runs running. BTW, Carmen’s donated $20. I’ll see if Marion has any needy people he wants to help out. Who would benefit from the Cooper’s kindness.

Opportunities do abound for goodness in this world. One only has to open their eyes as they trip over them.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Small Steps and Christmas

I’m happy to see that Jackie Gingrich Cushman is becoming a regular at

Below is a link to her most recent article.
It is eerily similar to the article I just wrote over on my Live Dangerously Blog the day before.
I think we both used the same source material. Now if I could only write as well I would stand a chance.

Jackie in her article says. “A reframing of our thoughts away from monetary and economic matters might help remind us as well that there is much good in life and much to be happy about.”

How do we reframe our thoughts? We all don’t have an “Oldbody” willing to fake a suicide to stir us to action. Some of us are too far gone to try to save anyone anyway, we may find ourselves saying something like; “it’s not our job”, let the government to it“. Or “Boy if that guy lives will he ever have a great law suit against the city.”

Well the answer lies in “small steps”. I’ve blogged entirely too much about that already, but it was nice to see someone else with the same thoughts. It’s coincidences like this that rekindle my hope.

The idea I want to explore is how does our party become the party through which we can learn to take those small steps. What can I do today to further that effort. Here at the local level is where it must start. It is in the joy or contentment we receive in giving that will become the agent of change for our party. It will be what will allow us to pass it on.

It is in this simple joy we receive in “getting out of ourselves” and participating in the lives of other that we can “reframe” our thoughts about ourselves. This new perspective will be reflected in our relations to neighbors and our place in society. This can be the nexus of our Party’s rebirth. The bedrock of our efforts.

It should be the reasoning behind our policies going forward.

It should be the Logic behind reforms in education. For example; in education, the children of this country, (our children, our neighbor’s children), need our help. They deserve all the help we can give them, by making sure our schools prepare them for their futures. By making sure our teachers are teaching. We do that the same as everything else. We pay by what they put out. Our graduation rates are a sin against the future of our children. We should learn how to demand change. I am learning.

Back to “What Can I Do Today?” and small steps. This morning I’ve been reading “A School Privatization Primer” which along with “A Michigan School Money Primer” and “A Teacher Quality Primer” make up the literature I’ve received from The Mackinac Center. Below is a link to the part of their site dealing with education. Look through the site and you’ll see a lot of this can be downloaded for free. That is the point of Mackinac Center. To come up with new studies new primary research that they can then get out to those that matter. Parents of children I think qualify as someone who matters.


The reading may be dry and formal but the reasoning behind it and their conclusions are the stuff of revolutions. It is the ammunition needed to storm the bastion of the entrenched MEA and NEA, who have complete control and should bear the complete responsibility for the resulting crimes against our children. The place to do that isn’t in Lansing or Washington, but in our individual backyards. At our School boards when they are negotiating contracts have the legal power to change things. We need to study and start presenting our case. We need to come up with a case for change to help our school boards, to watch the backs of those who favor change.

Remember, it was not the government that made Jimmy Stewart claim “It’s a wonderful life“, but his “common sense” he received from viewing his life and seeing the good through the bad that was in it, along with the help of those of his friends and neighbors he had interacted with through his life.

It is this kind of thing I feel which prompted Jackie Gingrich Cushman to claim “It’s Still a Wonderful Life”. Can You see it?

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Wiser----In Name Only

Oh This is Great a Savior for our state Party.

Well Saul er I mean Devoss, er maybe Libby Dole if she is still around, any way someone has picked a great one to rule in his stead as Saul takes his born again internet show to the National scene.

Read the link below so you can better judge if what I blog about after is realistic or just plain stupid. Here’s a novel thought, you tell me. Read on and get the drift of that idea.
Wiser starts off by saying that our loss has us “unsettled”. Well he is at least capable of understatement. Then he claims that the reasons for our loss are not important. What we did wrong needs not to be pointed out and understood. Learning from our mistakes is not an option. Well it’s not a novel idea the dems have proven it works.

What are we to do then? Simple, he took a page from Obama, by saying the important thing is the change we make for the future. Fair enough except how are we to make meaningful changes if we don’t come to grips with what we did wrong in the last two elections and repeat those mistakes. How do we even know it is change, or the same ole same ole, which is my impression of this candidate.

Next Wiser claims that leadership is the key, (enough with the understatement already) that the leadership should have a unique combination of characteristics. (oh well I give).

As far as explaining what those characteristics are, he seems a little vague especially about effecting “Change”. What I read is about doing what has been done for a long time past.

I come away from his website feeling that his idea of “grassroots activists” are the same group of state, district and county leaders that have done the work to help get us where we are. I would look at the reasons that is bad but I might be accused of getting in the way of important “changes”.
The emphasis should be on finding ways to connect to the people we are losing in droves. Backing Weiser for me would be like backing Thomas Jefferson’s son as he worked his way up the moneyed British/American colonists to a governorship while his father fought for freedom from those his son thought were better. If you really are after change, yet willing to study the past for mistakes, you will know what I’m talking about.

I get the feeling of someone whose is playing at this new “Grassroots” thing. Here is a quote from the site.
I am a conservative who believes in being a team player and involving all of our grassroots activists.
As a campaign worker, Precinct Delegate, County HQ manager, and not a leader; I didn’t feel any sense of Wiser as McCain Co-Chair getting me involved. In fact all I got was a bunch of emails from corporate types about all the great plans they had for the election until they finally pulled out of Michigan.

That even misses the point. The State Chair should be getting involved WITH the activists at the Township Precinct then County level. Actually helping and listening to those on the ground. Not the other way around. The Surge ring a bell? What is wrong with actually helping those “grassroots activists” Oops there I go again looking at what we did wrong and blocking “Change”.

Another mistake I’m making is what my political betters keep telling me by their actions, is that I forget which side my bread is buttered on. I went to our County Convention and listened to someone who has worked tirelessly at the precinct level recruiting delegates and changing minds. This person made the trip to talk with us. His name is Norm Shinkle and he too is running for State Chair. The king maker Chuck Yob sent his gorgeous relative in his oops I mean in Wiser’s place to talk. One of our member who is the only one interested in running for a state office brought her. Both were well dressed and both were I admit pretty impressive. They too talked of those mind numbing cliques’ like a “Big Tent”, Change etc.

Before that County Convention my Chairman, (my mentor) and I were talking about Shinkle and he said that the only help he got from the higher ups (State Party) during the election was from Norm Shinkle. He received help in his search for Precinct Delegates, and later Norm was the one who set up the cheap buy of McCain/Palin signs when we had run out of them. An aside here is that the reason we ran out of signs was a jurisdictions fight over turf between the McCain Campaign person Greenely at the state level and Saul for the state party. While the county parties ran out of signs they bickered over who had the rights to the signs just sitting there. If I am wrong please correct me. Remember, Wiser was National Co-Chair for McCain. Wonder if Greenly and he talked about it. Remember Wiser claims we need good communication. Wonder what Saul twittered about it? No one else offered any assistance, just emails and platitudes. Needless to say I was disappointed when I saw both our Chairman and our aspiring state office seeker on the list of endorsements for Wiser.

Like I said the leadership didn’t want to get involved with us. But the other way around is just fine.

Like I also said, I keep forgetting which side my bread is margarined on.
The bottom of the Iceberg became clear to me when Wiser said.
We as Republicans must work together to ensure that the right people are in place to lead…
Call me paranoid but it sounds like the one thing that isn’t going to change with Wiser at the head is that subtle condescension that permeates all the efforts that have gotten us to being the Party that we are. Devoid of actual people in our grassy townships and rooty Precincts that will tolerate listening to such clap trap. Those people are going to listen to the clap trap of the Dems which is much more entertaining.

I’m getting to the point that I find it hard to blame them.
So to continue the Ice berg analogy, we have Wiser (which looks like a done bought and paid for deal) as State Chair, and Saul as National Chair. Then at the tip of the ice-berg (if only Obama in his reincarnation of Change would appoint her) We could have Granholm as his top financial advisor then we could all merrily continue our journey into financial, moral and buttered bliss. The Dems don’t let anything get in the way of change and increasing numbers of Republicans don’t either.
I’m just sorry to see this new/old “grassroots” spouting leadership so easily throw Hoodendyk and Shinkle under the bus. They will talk of change until all the real blood of change has been bled from the party.

Don’t they understand that CEOs lead people who they pay to work for them. This team leadership talk is about the people getting paid to be team members. Like those old fashioned ideas of “public Servant” and ”volunteerism” which have morphed into Team Members and Activists. Both now mainly paid by the way. Even as I rang a bell for the Salvation Army, I had to compete with paid volunteers. Kind of like entrepreneurs who are forced to compete with the government funded non-profits.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I'll Take It. "You Betcha"

Chambliss Wins. Great News for Republicans and Conservatives

The link below from Politico by John Krau Shaar sums up our hopes and belays some of our fears as Conservatives and Republicans.


The Quote below is the first tangible proof that the massive turnout by the Dems cannot be maintained by them without some outward galvanizing force. Their Policies alone will not do it. The historic nature of the Presidential Election was the key. Another was the lack of a galvanizing anything from our side and that lack produced low Republican turnouts, and historic Democrat ones.

Scores of Barack Obama’s leading field organizers had been dispatched to Georgia for the runoff, but without Obama’s name on the ballot they were unable to rally enough voters to the polls – particularly for a little-known Democratic politician.

The fact that Chambliss is a Conservative was icing on the cake. The fact that Georgia is a Conservative state; tells me three things. One our base can still come out to the polls and vote if they feel there is an important reason. Two we need to have something to get our base fired up to turn them out. Three, after turning out the base we have a huge job ahead of us; which is to enlarge that base.

How do we do that lacking a National Leader of great galvanizing capabilities? As Mary Matalin’s husband would say. “It’s the economy Stupid”.

We all realize that the Dems will say for the next four years that their difficulties in fixing the economy is all Bush’s fault. Also because Chambliss foiled their attempt at a fillibuster proof 60 vote majority they will say it is the Republican's fault too. To one degree or another depending on your party affiliation that does have a ring of truth. How do we fight that?

1. We present simple common sense fixes to the problem founded upon Conservative principles.
2. We present those policies with a united voice.
3. To do that we look for candidates from the heartland that know how to present those policies in a way the heartland understands. (Palin, Jindal, Ryan and a lot of other new bright eager faces come to mind.
4. We turn the liberal arguments around and knock the Dems over the head with them. For example with education. We tell them that children are being hurt and ruined for the rest of their lives by our educational system especially in the cities. How dare they perpetuate such a sin against our children. In this case especially we have common sense solutions at hand. Not to mention tons of evidence of the failure of their policies. See the link below.
5. Instead of arguing and squabbling now over who will give the message, let’s use a little political free enterprise. If we can work out our message, then the messenger who can deliver it best will soon enough rise to the top, we only have to allow (facilitate) that process.
6. We cannot fall back to circling the wagons, we must open up let the new voices be heard. As Paul Ryan said, we must take risks.
The Wackos will weed themselves out once they are in a place where they have to come up with solutions instead of just hurling insults.

How do we come up with the specific message backed up with facts and studies? Here I’ll stay with the example of education. We need to do the work, to dig up the facts. We need to know where to look for the facts. One such place I’ve found is The Mackinac Center. Be warned this is place that makes and publishes publications for the intake of the educational elite. The info. Is dry and not necessarily written to grab your attention in short sound bite sizes. That is up to us to ferret out the best way to popularize their facts.

The Mackinac Center is an information gold mine. Just remember like a gold mine it is a lot harder to dig for gold than to walk into a jewelry store. But without gold mines jewelry stores wouldn’t exist. I’m constantly amazed by the real Primary information they come up with. They generate their own studies based upon conservative ideas. The link below is one such study.
Check out the rest of the sight there are copious amounts of stuff. The site is hard to get around in but well worth the effort.

Not only do they do the primary research and publish the study they then give it away free to all on the internet. On top of that they set up a tour with speakers etc. to promote it in this case to the people that matter, the people who are in the educational system. That is pretty bold, giving a presentation favoring “Merit Pay” for teachers, to MEA types. I and a fellow blogger, The Muskegon Pundit attended that presentation in Lansing last summer. I found it refreshing.

One lesson I came away with from that engagement was that if the facts are presented in a straightforward manner and in that format, most people are not equipped to argue about it. In this case there were only a few who even remotely tried to question the conclusions.

So from Chambliss to Merit Pay I hope I made the connection. If not then I too must do some more work on the one thing this party lacks and that is their communication skills.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

PS. The next connection is how to bring that to the local Township races. If we find a way we might have something. Who represents most directly the Parents of the children that are being so abused than our Township officials? The School Board Perhaps.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Give Thanks For What ???

As I read the news, it is filled with specific and obvious reasons why the last thing on my mind should be to give thanks for the world we live in. Social, Political, Religious, and Financial upheaval. Should I give thanks for that?

But then I look at myself. My own situation and I see a microcosm of the same story. My house should literally be condemned. My income has gone from little to almost non existent. I’m divorced. I see my two children rarely. My political party has been thoroughly trashed in the last election in my County.

I heat with wood and each day I’m splitting or hauling wood into the house. Each morning my house is close to freezing and I have to huddle over my wood stove to keep warm and have my first cup of coffee.

I live in constant worry that the city will shut me down and condemn my house forcing me out into the streets. Onto the Dole. I just continue to do what I do, and paying my property taxes has become over the years my first priority. Without a house all the freedom I have to do what I want disintegrates into the freedom to live in another’s world with out the wherewithal to do anything I want.

The reason I give thanks today and everyday is that I have the ability to hope, to see past life. I have as we all do an imagination. The blessing, the gift comes in my ability to imagine the beautiful side of life. This blessing is a learned behavior.

It can be taught by people who have been beaten down and risen above their struggles. Much as a runner “hitting the wall” and has to dig deeper, to find their inner strength, and in so doing find a peace of mind from the doing. So too have I taught myself inner peace and contentment by taking satisfaction in overcoming the obstacles to freedom in my life. Heating with wood gives me that sense of freedom to control my life that few have even considered.

Nor do I suggest it. I simply suggest that we teach ourselves to look for and appreciate those things in life that we have control over and find the peace of mind from doing them, instead of letting others do them for us. Learn to give thanks for the freedom of mind that the work of “doing” accomplishes as nothing else quite does.

What is Thanksgiving but a re-enactment of our ancestors reveling in the bounty of overcoming all their hardships, through long hours of hard arduous work. Work I might add that only amounted to enough food to get them through the winter. The work they had to do was work that “Americans won’t do” anymore. At least the work bureaucrats in Washington won’t do. Then again I imagine peace of mind there is in short supply.

A sense of self worth has to be earned in this world.

It is hard to explain the “warmth of mind” I feel every morning in the winter as I become toasty warm from, then the bounty I realize I have created as I have to move further away from my wood stove, to stay comfortable. This is a direct in your face daily affirmation of the choice I have always in front of me, as to whether I will embrace freedom and use it to create my own self worth or give it away to others to let them feel important.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Opportunities Abound

Opportunities Abound, sometimes you can barely avoid tripping over them.

Been going through my house, kind of a fall cleaning thing. Time to winterize stuff. The pipes already froze once. I put up rigid insulation all around the half built foundation to keep the ground heat in; and stop the winter wind from howling through. Been throwing out stuff by the bag full. My house had become a human pig sty.

I blamed it on blogging, the elections and all the political stuff I’ve been doing, my lowly station in life. You know the spiel. Well hopefully you don’t! lol Really it’s just a case of a little slothfulness over a period of time. I think I’m about back to where I was last Spring. Lol.

I’ve gotten bogged down as far as trying to change our Party. The details are a set of never ending roadblocks. How do I format this and where do I file it so I can put it up on a blog in the same form. On the larger scale the problem is to get people enthused. I’m not the kind of person to excite people. I have to just accept that I can’t do it overnight.

Anyway as I was feeling sorry about my self I kept asking my self the question at the top of my Blog site. What Can I Do Today? Then I’d repeat my mantra of “Make Do, Make It Now, Make It Work.” But “Do What” I muttered, as I nearly tripped over about 15 bags of books(mainly paperback fiction). I realized that I had them piled there so that I would load them in my truck to avoid tripping over them. I planned on donating them. I put them there 4 days ago. Lol.

That started me thinking. This blog “Bottom Up Politics” was started as a way for me to get out in the neighborhood and meet the people. I would find a small business that I liked and interview the owner. I really enjoyed doing that and I could tell the owners appreciated that somebody cared. I would also talk with my neighbors and let them tell me their stories.

Then it dawned on me that those bags of books was a blog waiting to happen. I loaded them up and took off to see which one of the many thrift stores would get my donation. I went to three and said hi, looked around and then asked each “What is this store all about”. They all said that they were operating the business as part of their ministry. Each ministry consisted of their own unique version of helping their fellow man and spreading the gospel. This was going to be a tough decision.

I finally decided upon Hope Ministries Outlet Thrift Store located at 2424 Glade St. Muskegon Mi. Within plain sight of Seaway Dr.

click picture to enlarge
-----link + map-----
The pleasant lady when asked “what is this store all about”, said simply that they keep the store going for it’s own sake and to get enough extra for the truck load food give away. I asked if they did anything else in their ministry and she said every Sunday they have a Service. She volunteered that she goes to a big church (Calvery) and she liked to come here Sunday because of the small group of people.

This was my last stop and her kindness and lack of pretense tipped the scale. I asked her where I could unload my books. She said she’d let her boss know and that I should drive out back. I did and unloaded my bags. Then I met Ken a younger man filled with energy and spirit. I told him what I was up to and he asked me why I picked them over the others, and I said because this place was more personal, more directly tied to the good they were trying to do. He seemed pleased and seemed to understand what I was doing. He gave me the store hours. Mon.-Fri 10-6, Sat 10-5.

I asked him when the Service on Sunday was and he said 10:30. He said it was usually a small group and the service was centered around the bible. He offered that it was more of a bible study. I asked if I should blog it, and he definitely thought I should. It is open to the public.

So with a little sarcasm. Something like a cluttered work place where I almost tripped and could of hurt myself. Something that OSHA would take great glee in fining me over to help me protect myself. When left to my own (?) resources, I turned it into something to help the neighborhood and me especially. Not a big thing but a small study in what everyday things can do for us if we step back now and then and focus on what is really important.

Opportunities abound.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Organizing Without an Organization.

Organizing without an organization.

Sometimes I get to feeling that what I am trying to do is too big or too complicated or that I’m not big enough or my brain is not complicated enough to accomplish that which I seek.

I then look at what I seek. I try to think it through to see if what I seek needs redefining. Are the methods consistent with the goals I seek.

I usually fall back to reading and ferreting out a better clearer definition of what I seek. I believe a clear principled statement of purpose will drive the solution process. I would rather tweak the methods to fit the principle than tweak the principle to fit the methods. With flexible methods the best ones can rise to the top and will become obvious.

When I started this blog I set up a Conservative Coffee For Ward 2 Muskegon every Sun. morning at 8am. I sat there for 14 weeks and not one person showed up. That method didn’t work. I finally discarded the idea. That failure was actually a blessing in disguise. I had brought a book with me. It was “The Effective Executive” by Peter F. Drucker. I had plenty of time to read and study it. Lol.

This is the book Newt Gingrich recommended to students to read and reread as he did as a student and which helped shape his thinking.
Well that “wasted” hour every Sunday morning has helped me shape my thinking. This morning I was up at 5am and re-read some of it.

That book is exceptional. Every time I have a problem I can’t get a handle on and I read that book: solutions seem to automatically appear in front of me.

My current problem was how to “disorganize” the County party and get it based on the Precinct Level. Let the County be a facilitator for and not a dictator over the Townships and Precincts.
I want the County to put it’s efforts into recruiting not just the allotted # of Precinct Delegates but have those Delegates set up small Precinct “Clubs” or something.

As with most new ideas, they sound great but are really hard in the doing. How do I get this idea off the ground? Well after thinking about it non stop for a couple of weeks and working toward that end on the mechanics of it; I had hit the wall. I had blogged myself out. I had emailed all I could. I had read all my favorite links twice and nothing was happening. Depression was peering around the corner for his next meal and he was looking at me.

Well that simple little book has reignited my energy level. Later in the writing of this piece I edited in the link to Newt above and am listening to it now as I finish writing this and it is firing me up. One quote from the book I always love is.

{Unless a decision has “degenerated into work” it is not a decision; it is at best a good intention} I love the use of the word “Degenerated”. To me it is a backhanded compliment to the People who actually do the work.

In my world I take that to mean, until something is actually done, all the rest is no better than idle chatter. The pointless and wasted firing of nuerons.

This always leads me to the concept that we learn how to solve problems by actually trying to work the solutions. If the solutions are made flexible then better solutions are possible.

We need to create a more specific message, so that we can then adjust the methods to further the message, not the other way around. We need a strong uniting Message (platform) that gives us all something to try to accomplish. Then let the various Precincts and Townships come up with the methods to accomplish that message. The best workable solutions will come to the top.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I lifted the following quote from a Walter E. Williams article titled, “Evil Concealed by Money”
From the article
This is why socialism is evil. It employs evil means, coercion or taking the property of one person, to accomplish good ends, helping one's fellow man. Helping one's fellow man in need, by reaching into one's own pockets, is a laudable and praiseworthy goal. Doing the same through coercion and reaching into another's pockets has no redeeming features and is worthy of condemnation.

This is another example of an entry into an English-Conservativeese Dictionary I should write. I don’t know if “Dictionary” is the right word but the concept is to explain each issue (in this case “capitalism vs. Socialism”) in simple short common sense bullet points everyone can understand. Once we have learned that language then we can make the case for constructive common sense solutions everyone can follow.

Our solutions need to be based on the same stated goals of the liberals, Walter calls them “good ends, helping one’s fellow man”. We however need to have ours actually achieve the desired results.

In education for example is it not a crime (a sin) against our children to throw all the money we do at education, and have the results continue to be so poor? We need to make the case for “Merit Pay” Vouchers or any thing that introduces competition based on “educational excellence” or simply helping our children. We have to bring it down to the personal level. In that way we personally get to feel the problem. We really get to know the people and the “real issues”.

I hope my friend won’t mind if I share an email with you that he just sent me. I will not give his name. The picture I’m afraid I’m not capable of putting in so I’ll just say that they are of a rack of Santa outfits for children on display at Wal Mart.

-----email snippet-----
I just got back from Walmart (Henry St) tonight and had a nice bunch of pleasants.
Walking down the aisle, I noticed a grizzled older white guy stocking shelves. I remembered him from last summer when he assembled my grill (free assembly from walmart!).
I said "hi" and "thanks for doing such a great job on my grill.... I remember that you're the guy who put it together, nice job, I really like my grill... thanks and Merry Christmas".
I was just being nice but he BEAMED, REALLY beamed, and said "thanks.. we don't get too many compliments here....thanks"
I waved and pushed my cart on..... and saw a 40ish black guy pushing a broom... with a UofM hat on.
This affront need to be addressed so I said "Merry Christmas but I hate your hat"....
We had a 5 fun minute chat (while he broomed!)about MSU, UM, Muskegon Big Reds and how he wanted to wear his MSU hat but it didn't match his sweatshirt and ...what a nice and friendly guy.
I'm on my way out and I pass this:

-----my own edit----
This is where he put the nice picture
I don't have kids but how cool are these outfits!
A large, black 30ish gal is near me and I ask her what she thinks "they'd sure look good on my kids".
I said "Merry Christmas" she said, big smile on her face "Merry Christmas to you".
What a nice experience.
I'm tired of "experts and community organizers" telling us about "the 2 Americas" or "hate", "anger".
My town, Muskegon, Michigan isn't perfect but it's a pretty nice place to meet my neighbors and say "Merry Christmas". 

That is the frame of mind I’m talking about, what “Bottom Up Politics” is supposed to be about. I set up this blog as a way for me to have a place where I can step out of that “hateful-fight em tooth an nail” attitude and keep grounded in the reality of my neighborhood.
A way to check myself to make sure I’m doing “good not evil”. A way to define my methods.

Kudos to my friend and may we all, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Monday, November 17, 2008

Diversion Back To Reality

It’s The Little Things

As so often happens in life as we struggle with the big issues one of those inevitable “things” in life distracts us from our “important” work. Life does that, it demands immediate attention and draws us away from our focus on things. I have found this to be a needed and useful “diversion” back to reality. A needed reality check if you will.

Since I’ve started this adventure that I call politics. These “diversions” into reality have given me the most insight into the why of my politics. Also have shown me a better direction in which to head to further my politics.

I have been working really hard in local politics and am trying to help the Muskegon County Republican Party get organized. See my new blog about just that below.
In that effort I am setting up a plan to organize the county thru the Precincts or neighborhoods as it was meant to be and put the emphasis on the volunteers a “Bottom Up Politics” approach if you will.

Part of that effort was to recruit future Precinct Delegates NOW not wait until Primary time 2010. I have struggled and worked night and day with this trying to figure out a way to get it off the ground.

During this time I started feeling guilty about not checking in on a friend who is having a hard time keeping a job. This guy is really smart but has some issues still from Vietnam. He is the epitome of conservative ideals. He is always trying to improve himself, a hard honest worker. Believes in the free enterprise system. He is a qualified Heavy Equipment Operator, Recently spent over a year working as a Long Haul Truck Driver. He does have the uncanny ability to fall prey to unrighteous employers. He is open honest and trusting. A deadly sin in this world today.

I’m amazed at how he bounces back each time he is slapped down. He is my Joe the Plumber. We like to get together on occasion and just shoot the you know what for a few hours. One of the few people I like to really talk with. I had heard that since I last talked with him that he had lost another job. I can vouch for the crookedness of the employer on this one. So last night I went over to his house to see how he is doing. To see if I could help him out. Well he seemed just fine and we just started talking and it was I that started to unload about what I was trying to do. We soon got into specifics and I found myself elaborating and adding to my plans through his ideas and our interplay.

We did a lot of talking about ways to do fundraisers and getting people to volunteer through “events” or GOP-Raisers. It got dark and I decided to leave. I felt better about him, my plan and everything. As I was getting into the car, it dawned on me that Larry would make the perfect Precinct Delegate Designate. I jumped out of my car and went back and asked him if he would like to be my first Recruit. I also asked if he would like to come to the County Party Meeting the next evening. He said he would like to do both and he would love to help in any way.

That was a blessing. I firmly believe it was given to me because I took the time to check on a friend and put aside my “important” stuff.

I think our Party will be blessed if it puts away its “important” stuff like computer generated charts and graphs and all their reliance on the mercenary advisers and goes out and has it’s own “diversion back to reality”.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A True - Live Dangerously Man.

I like to play at “Live Dangerously, Be A Conservative”.
This guy doesn‘t play, and hasn’t for a long time.
I’ve been following and highlighting him for 6 months now and this latest blog shows that he is one of the Conservative Stars on the Horizon and in the Trenches. His expertise is Franklin like. But his knowledge of the sin of public schools is becoming legendary.

As a Party we need leaders that are young enthusiastic and most importantly able to simply, logically and in a common sense way, demonstrate unequivocally the failed liberal ideas, then give easy to understand Conservative Solutions. We need it NOW and in the neighborhoods where the most damage is being done. I call this stark method of communication a new language I‘m christening as “Conservativeese”, it really not that new, it used to be called common sense.

Leaders on the Right are emerging who speak and believe in this new language. I’m learning it by immersing myself with you tubes of Sarah Palin who became famous for it. Bobby Jindal who put it to use and resurrected Louisiana. Ronald Reagan and Newt Gingrich who sequentially took over the government in the recent past using this same language and message.

Akindele’s no-nonsense, old school, honest, in your face with a reality check method, works because he offers obvious common sense solutions. It is the same language. Same message.

I was going to cut and past highlights in this article where Akindele address the failure of the liberals to stop the break down of our public school system, and explains how they have fought tooth and nail against making any change. How they say one thing then another. This guy is really on the cutting edge of the education issue. If you check out his blog you will see that he is also creating on the ground, real solutions. Not that he needs it but a “Two Bottom Up” award from Bottom Up Politics.

I will let you draw your own conclusions. To do so. Read it.

In order to bring this down to the parameters of “Bottom Up Politics” I will say thatIn Muskegon there is an effort underway to start up an Academy by Bishop Wells and others. I think Akindele would agree that at this point any competition against the public school monopoly is good. I need to find out more, do some footwork, do some talking and help if I can. Now I have some home work to do for this blog.

Newt Gingrich has come up with his concept of a “tri-partisan majority” in which a majority of Liberals, Conservatives and Independents believe in on an issue. Well the education issue, as Akindele agrees is an issue that transcends race and class. We have a chance here to change the system for the better and in the doing win a lot of converts. Republicans had been making inroads until we reverted back to our default Country Club Top Down Leadership mode. But as Akindele points out all parents want their children to have a chance at the best we have to offer. I also think that this issue should transcend the division within our own party. We have a golden opportunity let’s use it.

My one cut and paste I will do from Akindele’s article is something I too believe.
“It‘s time to stand up and take education on.”

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Conservativeese My new language

I will apologize as this post is mainly about National figures, but as you read through it try to keep in mind how this all could be translated into local precinct politics. Especially the emphasis on the enthusiasm within the message. Not so much the messenger. I wrote the majority of this as an email then decided as I kept discovering gems on youtube that this would make a good blog entry. I've always loved what Bobby started and kept on doing in Louisianna, and well Newt and his message have been my favorites since GOPAC days.

Here is a link to the Greta / Bobby Jindal interview on fox.

I have always been impressed by Jindal since he came to my attention during Katrina.
-----link to old blogs-----
He rose from a state rep to governor because he was a doer and not a talker. It sounds like he has become a pretty good talker as well. I haven’t heard anyone since Newt and of course Reagan before that give such a good direct and specific explanation of how Conservative solutions will and have worked. His state is a prime example. With Newt as party chair now, with Palen as Governor or Senator in 2010 and no bad missteps, Jindal and Palen (or vice versa) would be an awesome conservative ticket. Bobby would say though that as long as the message gets across and it's solutions implemented he wouldn't care. I would believe him on that too.

But this is what I’m talking about as far as the message for now at least has to be what we have to fire up the base so we can get an organization up and running way before the 2010 election. I’m going to inundate myself with the way Jindal and Gingrich can put The Conservative message into simple direct solution based language everyone can understand. I’m going to see if I can get a CD on how to learn “Conservativeese” in 12 easy lessons. Think I’ll start with Newt’s youtube channel.
Check out how Newt blows Allen out of the water, on the first video.

More on Jindal this time his interview by Laura Ingrahm. And what an interview it is. If you don't get enthused by this you're not a conservative, or you're too high up in your ivory tower or something. This is a two part series.
-----Part 1------

“When you’re in a hole stop digging” Great stuff. Substance over bitching. Principle over substance, Principled solutions work. "act like we talk" I'm sold.

Great stuff.
Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

edit in a story from Right Michigan that fit really well.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What Can I Do Now? Here’s What.

What Can I Do Now? Here’s What.

This site “Bottom Up Politics” do to my interest in politics will focus as a journal of my attempts to try to help our County Party organize itself along local lines to first shape our message into one of service to the community through common sense solutions to everyday problems. Show our neighbors that Republican can make things work.

Second, thru those solutions gather a base of precinct delegates to come up with and implement those solutions. As the base is built it will be ready to function as a political unit when the time comes. Below is what I did today to further those goals.

Started out blogging on my other blog and catching up on news of the real world. That is where I came up with a link from Right Michigan (see top of my side bar) to Suburban Voice.
At that point I received a call from Hope Mitchell (SP) from the City telling me she talked with Tom Van Bergum (sp) from the County Equalization bureau in regards our talk yesterday about a County wide Precinct Map. I immediately call up Tom and then went down to his office in the South Campus across from Logan’s Print shop (see side bar- “stores I like close by”). It took most of the morning but we came up with 3 copies of all the precincts in the county highlighted in color with all the streets clearly labeled on a 3x4 foot map. $20 @.

Then I went to John Koens office (our county party Treasurer) to let him know and show him the maps. He reimbursed me for the one I bought for the HQ then he also bought one more for his own office which is by the way in Jerry Van Workems Muskegon Office. So I have one left for me to put up in my house. I also ordered 5 hangable city metro area maps for an even better depiction of the city Ward/Precinct system. Then home I started to go but hunger for food and a favorite restaurant I have blogged and followed from their beginning got in the way.

That was “Mia & Grace Bakery and Bistro”. They are still flourishing. There lunch business seemed brisk, and the people were animated by the décor and flavor not only of the delicious food but of the Bistro and all of it’s appointments. I had my (little lol) snack of a “Texas Pecan Pie Bar” warmed up. That was really rich and decadent and all you could hope for. Then the main meal was of course Pecan Crusted Chicken which was placed upon mashed potatoes and some other mixture of vinegar and greens and other secret stuff with gravy circulating the entry creating an appealing picture as well as flavor. Milk and coffee cost around $20. Later I will try to scan in the flyer that was on each table listing in a professionally colorful way the other specialty shops around the downtown area. This will make a good addition to my “Resource Link” section on my side bar, lower down.

On my other site, I had blogged earlier about the link above for The Suburban Voice in which I said I’d contact them. Well they didn’t have a contact # on their site so I called the Livingston County HQ and talked with a young man Phill Kraft. Who said he was the Executive Director of the County party. Different from the County Chair etc. Livingston County was a “Victory Center” They also had paid staff. He said that they had tried to set his volunteers up through the precincts as I am attempting and it was a miserable failure. He ended up getting the volunteers he needed through the walk in people at the HQ who were enthused by the election etc. Their volunteers mainly did the election stuff like stuff bags, make lit drops and do the phone bank thing.

I’m hoping to organize along the lines of community involvement and then later to help with the 010 election. The point is that volunteers will be doing something at least for now for the community and only later for a short time the gruesome work of elections. Hopefully we can add some fun to that picture as well.

Getting back to my plan. I now have the County Precinct Map, I will soon get the City Metro, and I already have and copied off the individual precinct maps to hand out to the current precinct delegates and future precinct delegate designates. All this I can put on our new table under the sign Kay and I put up for volunteers. I will now write up a cover letter to explain it all. 2 days ago Kay brought in the Volunteer sign up card she designed. I also talked with John Koens who said he could print up precinct lists of Republican voters to give to precinct delegates/designates who would want them to use. I would like to get this on the agenda for the next meeting this Monday.

Now I’m off to recycle some old 4x4 political signs for backing for the maps I just had made. Plus I need to do some straightening up and fixing up of the “Volunteer Table” and fix up the wires in the back. And put up Marve’s big sign in the window.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Monday, November 10, 2008

Summing Up, and Starting New

Getting back in the swing of Blogging is nice. It feels good.

This election was long and hard. Karen’s campaign was a grueling mix of dinners and meetings and parades and candidate forums and benefits you name it we did it, but for me the real grind was not knowing what I was doing and making it up as I went. Hardest to bear was hoping it was good enough.

I used for my motto, “What Can I Do Today?” I made lots of mistakes, but I was usually there to admit them and do what I could to fix them. I mean I was a rookie. I didn’t even have a cell phone to start. I didn’t know any of the players at the county level or city for that matter. Everything was a crash course.

I tried to run the County Headquarters as well thinking that I could help Karen our County Clerk through the offices there. I think I did make a difference in that regard as I talked a lot of people into taking her yard signs. These were people that I would of missed in the canvassing we were doing.

Everything I did seemed like a crash course, I had nothing to judge my performance by. Karen being the nice lady she is kept giving me compliments, and Larry when he was in from Texas worked hard to help me get the signs out. Mildred her mother was awesome in the sign department also.

All of the behind the scenes efforts with the local media, churches, nonprofits, and all the other organizations, plus the plethora of other important connections to be made, seemed at the time overwhelming. The Obama Tide was too much for all of that. At best in normal years our Muskegon County is a battle for a Republican to win. Karen won county wide in the election of 2004 by only 500 votes out of 60-70,000 votes. This year despite superior candidates in several slots we lost all county wide including Karen’s and Holly Hughes failed to win the 91st State House Seat.

Though Karen’s loss was least of all the candidates due to our heavy work in the city areas, it was still a loss and one of the saddest moments of my life. I know I could of done better, but I also know I gave all I could. That thought is why I know I will try again with the same conviction and a deeper insight into how the system works, and a surer hand in trying to work it.

Still a rookie I have learned a lot about people and how a campaign works and needs to work with people, and through people to be effective. People have to be enthused, excited about something in order to do what they would normally not do. That is what the Republicans lack. In Muskegon by and large I can vouch for that lack. That lack is what I will try to bring back for the next two years to our party.

As with the national and it looks like the state party our County party for better or worse will get new leadership. I will do all I can to try to foster a change in enthusiasm.

As with the campaign I will succeed through effort - by doing. By trying to do what I think is best. I will cooperate as much as possible but will DO something when all else fails or other dither. By trying as many different approaches and gimmicks as I can, knowing that most will fail. I hope my ego will not get in the way. My “do it my way or the highway” approach doesn’t work but seems my default mode of operation. I can and I will learn to control that.

Life “Real Life” intrudes but I will minimize that. Soon I will have to start to make a minimum of money to live and my house will need fixing in some pretty major ways. This too I will handle as need be. But always I will have my eye on the prize. 2010 then 2012 to get Michigan back in Conservative hands and a Young, Common Sense Conservative President and a fighting chance in the US House and Senate.

Pipe dreams? Back In the day I used to smoke a lot of pipe dreams and I can spot fantasy a mile away. I just hope I have the energy and wherewithal left to do all that I can see in front of me.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative.

PS. Kay Punter and I spent most of the day at HQ reorganizing and cleaning it and it is now ready to start receiving volunteers for the next election. We are talking about a separate Precinct Delegate Drive since they won’t get on the ballot till late in 2010, I’m calling it a Precinct Delegate Designate Drive. We are trying to come up with things that volunteers can do. John Koens our treasurer came by and we talked about what it would take to keep the HQ open money wise. If I build it well they will come and I won’t have problems that way. I hope to stress the idea that our efforts should pay for themselves. Being Republicans we understand that we have to be good stewards of other peoples money. When we elect a new County Executive Committee at the upcoming County Convention, and they elect new officials, we hope to have a suggested format to start with that they can change as they see fit. I do hope to start getting back into my neighborhood. Hope to let it serve as a model of how I think we can organize precincts. We’ll see. Hope to get back to normal blogging. This site will reflect the emphasis I’m putting into politics. This started as a political action site afterall.

Every day “What Can I Do Today?”

Sunday, November 9, 2008



I received a wonderfully written article in the mail on rebuilding the GOP.

This made a lot of sense. It admitted that the Dems had us outnumbered on the ground at election time and before. I agree. As I sat next to my Democrat poll challenger I must agree that we were out personalled and out smarted. This was a young graduate of law school that I could find no fault with other than her left leaning ideas.

She was not a “commie pinko” lol. She was an intelligent sharp witted common sense young person. She was dedicated to her goal of winning the election. I too was dedicated, but not prepared. As I talked with her, she told me how she liked going out to register voters. I had registered none, our county party had nothing set up to do that. She showed me her notebook which explained what to do in any situation at the polling booth. I had no such literature.

She also received hourly text messages from her headquarters to find out the vote totals and she also entered them into a form to be later sent to headquarters. I wrote a couple #s on scrap paper to look good, but I had no one to give them to.

I learned a lot this election cycle. My first. The one thing I come back to as I try to figure out what can be done in the future and present is that, like the article, we as a party need to make better use of the internet and increase our membership within the younger generations. (all generations for that matter). That is obvious. What has also become obvious to me is that our whole emphasis has to switch from the macro to the micro. Not the other way around. We need to find ways to get the public to believe then later become enthused in the message of the Republican party. We need a clear alternative, a common sense alternative to the Democrat Party.

The Democrat Party showed the power of the internet, we need to play catch up. Again Obvious. But let us do them one better. Let us put the emphasis on what we do not on the elections. Again it is obvious we need to win elections and we need to get voters to vote for Republicans. Let us then concentrate on how to win over those voters. Let’s emphasize organizing ourselves at the very local level. I’m talking the neighborhood, or Township or Precinct level, call it what you will. Organize ourselves around the dinner tables to do worth while things in the community. We should proudly state we are Republicans, then practice what we preach. We all know of the Lions Club, VFW, Eagles etc. Why not a community Republican Club?

We can do this with the idea of “Make Do, Make it Now, and Make it Work.” If we find ourselves alone in our efforts, we will need to go out to churches and other charitable places that are trying to make a difference, add your touch, find other like minds. Make a point of getting together with them and come up with your own. Start something new. This is where the real change can take place. This is where the internet can be utilized. Exchange emails and form networks of other like minded people. Set up blogsites for example for your neighborhood. This is what I mean by using the technology to “facilitate” the personal efforts of the grassroots.

Then it is vital that the next step up, the County Party in my case, will step up with any help they can to help “facilitate” the local efforts. The County could also be there with literature about real ideas based on past efforts to “facilitate” the growth of these individual efforts. I would look kindly on a County Republican Party that helped me in my efforts that way, instead of doing nothing or acting all worried and paranoid that they might lose their power of something. I would be more inclined to donate to them and join them if the were “facilitators”.

I would not look kindly either, on finally recruiting someone into helping out at the Rescue Mission with me on behalf of the Republican Party to have him tell me that he has started to get bombarded with email pleas by Tom Cole and the NRCC and all the other Republican Fundraisers. With all thelr condescending crap about how important they are and how vital it is that they donate money. That will not help me or my efforts. Neither will it help the party in the long term.

It is possible to overstate the obvious. The money etc. will come if we actually are making a difference in the community. When people see that what we are doing is real and substantive, they will bend over backwards to help us. I have seen it within our own Muskegon Republican Party. Our caution should be in not overreaching our goals, and our egos.

Small simple and honest our efforts should be. Isn’t that after all what we claim we want for our government to be? For the government to “facilitate” our efforts not to hinder them.

If not then -well- we can enlarge our mailing lists to allow us to email all that crap out to thousands of more people and wait for someone else to start a new party. Perhaps a Party that means something

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

PS. Here is a link to a couple of people who are trying to do what I have been talking about and are in the process of actually doing it. I’ve talked with them and they are sincere but just starting. Check back to their site every so often and see what they are trying to do. See if this is what will change minds. I wish them luck and if I can “facilitate” their efforts I will.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Jack and Thomas and Me

Whenever I get lost in my thoughts and lose my connection to my basic beliefs, I can always go back to Thomas Sowell.

His book “Conflict of Visions” was a watershed for me, it has helped me in all areas to frame the context of my thoughts.

His recent writings have truly helped me to steer a steadier course through these troubled and confusing times. He is my beacon of conservative thought. Below are links to his last 3 articles.

Going from the philosophical to the everyday thoughts, from the “Save the World” to the “What specifically can I do today” to make a difference type of thinking almost always leads me into so many different streams of thought that I easily become confused as to purpose without going back to my basic footings. These lie in conservative thought and those thoughts are best manifested for me in the writing of Thomas Sowell.

I have volunteered to be a poll challenger for this election. I have no idea what I am getting into. I just know that an election free of intimidation are a necessary ingredient of the type of government I want to be a part of. Being a poll challenger seems the most direct way to accomplish that and answer my question, “What Can I Do Today”. Of course after that, there are a myriad of things to attempt along those lines, but for now today a “poll challenger” is what is on my plate. That is what I’ll do, then something else. I will not fall into the trap of thinking something better, as that assumes perfection which may easily talk me out of doing what is good but imperfect today. This journey of mine is simply constant vigilance of the freedom I have that others have won for me and my accepting the responsibility to stand up for those ideas that will ensure my children the same if not more freedom to pursue their happiness.

Along those lines another more direct and closer to home inspiration for me has been Jack Hoogendyk and his race against the bespectacled Carl Levin. A staunch conservative in his views and voting in the State House Jack has been a long time voice of reason in Lansing. Through the efforts of Arlene Helms, Jack will be coming to Muskegon Monday. The Boortman’s will be hosting him along with Karen Buie and Holly Hughes at Toast N Jams in the old K mart plaza on Henry. Although this is not yet written in stone, I believe it will happen. (EDIT--This has been confirmed, click here)I will post again when I get the actual confirmation and I will correct the name spelling etc and provide full details as soon as I get them.

Let’s all make an effort to attend and show our support for a good cause.
Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

PS. If you want to be a poll watcher or poll Challenger let me know give me a call anytime at 231-728-3455. Call soon, as the election is Tues.
PSS Have to run, just got a call that we are setting up on a street corner to hold up signs for Karen Buie to catch the morning traffic. Forgive my loose grammer and spelling as I gotta go.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

My apologies to all.

I’ve been so wrapped up in the mechanics of this election, I literally have no time left to blog. This election is turning into my own extreme reality show. To bring my readers and myself up to date I have been operating the Muskegon County GOP Headquarters on Henry and Sherman in Musk. For the last two weeks. I’m there Mon-Fri noon to 5:00. From there I can keep up with my other job which is being the campaign manager for Karen Buie the Muskegon County Clerk. Or so I thought. I also thought I could keep up with watching over and updating the County GOP web site. Oh Well. As soon as I get one thing started in walks a possible vote. DROP EVERYTHING.

I went down there this Sat. morning for example to make sure all was in order for some door to door that Holly Hughes and Karen Buie were going to do. Being Sat. I thought I could catch up on things. NOT I arrived at the HDQ around 7am and started setting up some more stuff we got in, then went to the phone and started calling to make sure things hadn’t changed overnight. People started to come in off the street around 8:30 and they just kept on coming. At 9 I gave up and decided to turn on the lights. !!! I’m almost out of McCain stuff. AGAIN Of course the McCain/Palin stuff is not going to arrive for at least another week. I’ve a list of people over 125 strong that want the McCain/Palin stuff, they all ask me the same question, with varying degrees of incredulity. Where the heck are they. My favorite that I myself have asked is. ARE THEY WAITING TILL AFTER THE ELECTION ?????

Then I started to getting a few people asking to volunteer for the McCain/Palin campaign and I had no where to send them. I just felt stupid as I took their name and numbers, I just tried to not look the part. This Political Thing of Ours is a pretty shaky and loose type of thing. A spur of the minute type of thing. Fueled by a few volunteers doing what they can when they can with nothing like an overall plan only the overwhelming desire to see their side win. A desire that this would be a good thing.

I’m pretty organized and like things to happen in orderly ways and my brain gets fried wondering what is going to happen next. I’m pulling what little hair I have left out as my brain go zonkers. I’m amazed though at how things do eventually work out. Usually for the good. My heart just gets stuck in my throat when I think of some of the obstacles the candidates have faced and what sacrifices some candidates have made to try to see their dream through. I’m coming out swinging next time I hear some “What Can I Bitch About Today” type say “All politicians are crooks“

I hardly have time to check out Drudge. Let alone all the juicy news. There is so much going on in life in this election and I have such a chance to have an imput that I’m like a pig in well I guess the term now is lipstick.

I do love blogging so I'll take a stab at it now and then like tonight in the dark. lol. This political thing is just as great and the helping of others is direct, but this will be over soon enough. For your Grace and Wisdon I thank you Tiny Tim for reminding me that God Blesses Us -- and Everyone.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Wow de Dowdy. Look at Drudge

The Drudge Report today 9/8/08 is full of good news
The bounce after the speeches at the Republican convention was better than the bounce Obama got from the other one.
The base is fired up, let’s do what we can to keep it that way. Let us make sure we do not do what we have done in the past, namely let our elites in our party sabotage this heaven sent chance. In the Drudge report also notice that there is an article about how this ascendancy may help congressional candidates. This is big this may be the “tipping Point” now everyone on three P U S H for all you got and we’ll get "this thing of ours" unstuck.

Obama may think he walks on water but he better look out for the line of cars flying by him. Lol.

Notice in Drudge that Oberman was canned as anchor. Notice two pictures of Palin. Who needs mudslinging when there is so much good to hold up and be proud of.

We can win this thing and people are becoming aware of it. That is the beauty of a secret ballot. The more mud slinging by the Dems, and the more viciously they attack, the deeper in their own morass of filth they sink. Let us be sure we do not stoop to their level. The American people are not as stupid and as blind as the Dems and some of our own elite think.

Now we have a choice. The choice is as vividly clear as I have ever seen it.

It is up to us TODAY. We need to ask ourselves every morning, “What Can I Do Today” to help this reform ticket, What Can I Do Today to help get the word out. What Can I Do Today to steer the Campaign along the positive and uplifting messages that WE NOW OWN simply by our actions of nominating this pair of candidates.

Come on down to the local party Headquarters and demand to help out. To be heard. Work with what is there, let’s make this a truly uplifting election.

Before you donate to a local candidate, make sure they are aware of the national race and remind them that there will be coattails to ride in on. Make everyone aware that you talk to of how great our candidates are. Defend them. Live Dangerously Don’t be Afraid to Be A Conservative. Never be afraid to do the right thing. This ticket will watch your back if elected. Let’s watch there’s thru the election.

Regrards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Saturday, September 6, 2008

It Works

Click on Picture to enlarge
Bottom Up Politics In Action. It Works

God Bless America, that it works best in America. In some countries it takes armed conflict and revolution with death and mayhem to achieve the wishes from the bottom up.

In the last almost two years, culminating in the two conventions we have witnessed the power of the secret ballot at work. I have been following the Drill Now debate for a long time now and have seen the voice of the people from “Bottom Up” reach into and force itself to be heard at the highest levels of government. It is through the political process that this voice gets forced upon the candidates for all office. I saw this “voice” rise in volume as the gasoline rose in price. Finally a national leader Newt Gingrich quantified it through polling then formed a plan of action. Slowly some young congressmen picked up on it then the leadership such as John Boehner in the House then the Republican Presidential Nominee John McCain. We saw the same “Bottom Up” Effect during the primary on the Immigration issue and specifically the Border Fence issue. The Power of the People is awesome, when it can be focused on one issue that is based upon common sense and upon the values the vast majority of Americans believe in, the effect of that power can be broad in it’s reach and long lasting. It can help shape the very future of our country.

We have seen that John McCain understands this. He appears to instinctively know this. Through perilous life lessons he has gone through there seems to be that balance necessary for any good things to be accomplished in the real world. McCain has learned the absolute need to be practical in order to survive and live another day. At the same time in the same ultimate school of life and death he was able to cling to his core beliefs. It seems that those beliefs are what not only let him make the necessary compromises with reality but inspired leadership from his fellow inmates, and even in at least one of the enemy.

One other lesson learned I’m sure was what happens when too much power is collected at the top and forced on the people from the top down. How easy those abuses occur and what little chance those abuses are seen from the top.

We have seen John McCain dramatically go to his core beliefs in his selection of Sarah Palin. She is a soul mate in regards of that mistrust of concentrated power. This is not some wild right wing notion. This is an American core belief. This is Democracy in action. This is “Bottom Up Politics” on the National Level. Little did I believe that I would see this during this election cycle.

I figured we would have to go through another liberal onslaught bringing our country to its knees economically and on the world scale before we could find the strength to rise loudly enough to force change from the Bottom Up.

The people have glimpsed the future under Pelosi and Reid and now Barrack and are learning quickly that they don’t like it. The incredibly courageous and astute pick of Sarah Palin by John McCain for his running mate has given voice to the longings of Americans that they will be not only listened to but understood at their core from the leadership at the top.

At the local level we have to keep our voices loud, but we must also offer more than the threat, we have to stand up for those who are “clearing the road” for us. They are the ones who in the political sense have put themselves in Harms Way. I mean no disrespect to the military by this, but in their political careers they are risking all to give us the sounding board we have missed for so long.

What Can I Do Today.
Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative.

PS at a local level. Here is a picture of our County Clerk with two new young republicans who are thinking about getting more like minded friends of theirs together. Our county party is trying to facilitate this through having our headquarters open and accessible to those willing to make a difference. Click on picture to enlarge

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


My previous blog had to do with the Tent Revival of Pastor Duncan. His selfless efforts to spread the Word. To help people. I promised some pictures but only one came out. It does not capture the fun and spirit that followed but here it is.

To be honest this was my first time in a revival. I really enjoyed it. It let some of the pressure off me. I felt good about it.

Next. The "Buie Bunch" had it's last parade of the season. We were many and we were the most pumped up and together Bunch out there. Even in the "Labor" Day parade where most Republicans fear to tread and most don't. We were jamming. Clapping and Chanting Karen Buie Muskegon County Clerk. Well you had to be there to appreciate the buzz it created. Let me tell you there were a lot of people there and they appreciated it. We were the only one that the announcer mentioned twice on our way past due to our outbreak of Chanting. This picture was setting up before the crowds.

This has been a great Bunch of people of all ages, from Patrice's grandson Jayden too well the old man. ME. lol. I hope this group will stay together and help us with our upcoming fundraisers, and other activities. We have a thousand yard signs coming. That alone would take one person a week to put together. With the "Buie Bunch" some music and food at the Newly opened (lol) County Headquarters, It could be done in a night. Have to get Shelly on it.
I can't help but feel good about this whole thing.

Regards, Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

Sunday, August 31, 2008

A Man And His Truck Can Be A Beautifull Thing

I just got back from my weekly Sunday Morning Conservative Coffee for Ward 2 Muskegon, and for the 13th time, no one showed up except me. I sat as usual enjoying my forced relaxation and being out and about at such an early hour Sunday morning. I read some more of the Effective Executive by Peter Drucker. Great little book. I’m picking up all sorts of great insight into almost all the stuff I deal with day to day. This book may have to do with being an effective executive, but it can be used to teach me how to be an effective person and make what I do actually happen. This is a road map on how to turn your ideas on anything into something. This is right up the alley with my “Make Do, Make It Now, Make It Work” kind of get it done idea. The mechanics of the “What Can I Do Today” slogan I use couldn’t be better explained if I had written it myself.

Anyway, with only 15 minutes left to read before the end of my “Conservative Coffee” I saw this beautiful pickup truck pull up. It was a super duty 4 door “dualy”, a “450”. Shiny Black with Glittering chrome all over Pick up. Let me interject here that I’ve been driving pickups for a long time as my only vehicle. My work demanded it plus they come in handy for all sorts of other things. I drive now a rusted out 1993 Ford F150, 6 cylinder. When the two men walked in, they were big men that fit the truck, one younger the other older, both well dressed like the truck. I caught their eye and complimented them on their truck. They accepted it pleasantly.

I went back to reading, they went around the corner to eat. As I left I saw them and went over to say hi and to find out what they used such a big beautiful truck for. Well the rest is what they told me. My Sunday morning Conservative Coffee bore fruit. It wasn’t political fruit though except in the broadest of terms. It was a delicious “Bottom Up” fruit. Good to the Core.

There are good things being done in our community by good people that few people know about because those people aren’t looking for news, they simply want to get good things done. They Make Do Make It Now, and Make It Work. The name of the Person I met this morning is Pastor James R. Duncan Jr. He is pastor of The Greater Revival Miracle Temple. This man has been helping people on his own when necessary and with friends for a long time.

He just recently went with a crew to Arkansas to do a make over of a home in need for a family in need. His crew consisted of an Electrician whom I know Tommy Walker, a plumber, and 4 carpenters. They used the truck to haul a big trailer with all their tools and supplies etc. The nearest Home Depot was a long ways, 50 miles or so, the truck and trailer in this case was a necessity.

Pastor Duncan also told me that they have a Tent Revival every day from 6:30 - 8:00 EVERY day with free ice cream and hotdogs at the 2345 Getty St. Address. This guy doesn’t have to but I get the sense he still asks, “What Can I Do Today” everyday.

He lives at a Foster Care Home he runs, located on or around Hackly and I believe he said Hume. The number to reach him is 830-9111. Better yet run out to Getty and help share the love, it’s free but if you have it I’m sure he’d take any donation of time offered or money. He never did mention donations or money. Just stuff he’s doing.

I had a few questions that would help fill out this blog so I called to hopefully ask the Pastor. As fate would have it, his wife answered it. She I found out is the one who bought the truck for him. She explained that he had wanted a real truck instead of the trucks like mine that he had been getting by with for a decade of working his ministry. He does not get a salary for his ministry. And as I’m finding out this volunteer based thing is a real study in the art of Making do so we can Make it Now, and Make it Work. I said that it looked like if anyone deserved it he did. She laughingly agreed.

Today I’m blogging about this in hopes someone will read it and help out. To paraphrase, the question of “What Can I Do Tonight?”, has been answered. lol Tonight I’ll go to the Revival and check it out. Below is the particulars.
Greater Revival Miracle Temple
2345 Getty St.
Pastor James R. Duncan Jr.
As for the rest of the day my son has been asking “What are you going to do today on my house you said you’d remodel”

Regards and have a wonderful Bottom Up day
Live Dangerously Be A Conservative

PS. Sarah Palin I’ll bet asked herself one day, “What Can I Do Today” her answer was to join the PTA. It worked !!!! Look what she’s accomplished.
PPS When I go tonight to the Revival, I'll try to get a picture of the truck and some others.