Sooner Tea Party Banned From House Email System
Back around the Thanksgiving weekend we started getting email and phone calls from House members asking where their copy of the newsletter was. After checking that they were still on our email list and hadn’t be unsubscribed by someone that they had forwarded the email to, we determined that the House of Representatives email system was blocking or diverting our newsletter.
The Governor’s staffers were reading their copies, so were the Senators, all the congressional offices, and a host of other state agencies. We managed to get around the House email system block one time by using a new email address : Comrade Kris Steele, House Email Censor. But the next week we started getting calls asking if the newsletter had gone out so it was obvious that House leadership had blocked the email company’s IP address. We experimented by sending small batches of email with different email addresses while legislators watched their email accounts in real time, including their spam filters. We just couldn’t get an email past the House email system so we resorted to sending the 101 House members the email via a personal email address using Yahoo email.
It was a bit troubling to believe that House leadership would spend the time and effort needed to block an email, even more troubling that they would block an entire email company’s clients from sending email to the House of Representatives. One wonders if there are any other local activist groups that have been blocked as well? Add that to the fact that many of the House members requested the newsletter and that one of those Representatives was my own elected official and you have another troubling instance of secrecy ruling 23rd & Lincoln rather than the rule of law.
We didn’t make a huge issue out of it other than explaining why we switched email addresses to send the newsletter. However this week Barbra Hoberock, a reporter with the Tulsa World called some of our sources in Tulsa asking about the censorship. Barbra eventually called us for the story so we got to tell our side of the controversy.
Other sources reported that John Estus, former investigative journalist for the Oklahoman and Speaker Steele’s current Press Secretary said that the newsletter was being caught by their spam filter due to references of “transvestites” in the newsletter. Other legislators merely laughed at the idea as they get spam email through their House email account. And I would add to that by asking John Estus why exact copies of the email from a personal email address make it through the House email system while copies from the newsletter system are caught in a spam filter?
And the final nail in John Estus's coffin would be the fact that almost every issue since March has had multiple references to transvestite Republicans and the transvestite birth certificate bill. Why did the spam filter suddenly start catching email around Thanksgiving?
Personally, I think it is a feather in our cap. The McCarville Report claims to be banned in China but we can say we are banned in Oklahoma.
Here is a list of House members email addressses blocked off in groups of fifty members. Copy them using your right mouse key and paste them into the To: space your email header and forward a copy of this newsletter to every last one of them with two emails. Use two separate emails to prevent your own system from believing it is a spam email by having too many email addresses at once. If enough of us bombard them with copies of the newsletter, perhaps they will remove their block on the Sooner Tea Party newsletter.
We are repeating last week's use of "treats" to reward readers for wading through our newsletter. This one is for Mike McCarville, the author of the self described "gold" standard of Oklahoma political blogs.
The Motivations of Mike McCarville
Just what are the motivating factors behind Mike McCarville, author of the McCarville Report, and why is he attacking the Sooner Tea Party? The McCarville Report is an online blog that reports on Oklahoma politics, a blog that used to have a reputation for balance and honest reporting. McCarville is elderly and sickly which usually puts a person in a position where they are less concerned for how people view them (the word curmudgeon comes to mind) and more likely to speak their mind yet McCarville is said have slithered under a rock when it comes to his blog reports on the conservative/liberal battles at the capitol.
McCarville showed up decades ago with a newsletter called the McCarville-Hill Report that covered politics in Oklahoma. The newsletter was successful for many years until McCarville took a job with KTOK, leaving his long time friend and partner Neva Hill to run the newsletter. McCarville continued to feed Neva Hill information but the Hill newsletter fizzled out a few years later, which cleared the way for McCarville to start the McCarville Report online after the internet came into being. The reporting on the McCarville report was considered fair and balanced until November of 2010 when fewer and fewer conservative stories were printed.
What happened? What changed that would cause an elderly, sickly, somewhat conservative blogger to suddenly change his political views?
May 13th McCarville Report with State Chamber of Commerce
"We're Watching Them" banner ad
Political manipulators forget that we have the wayback archive, an online organization that trolls the internet archiving websites to preserve the info. Using the wayback archive we find that Mike McCarville began accepting advertising from the State Chamber of Commerce in 2010 and right about the time the controversial Bartlesville Republican House Caucus met, the State Chamber ad went to the top of the page bumping down another advertiser that had been present much longer. Sources within the State Chamber tell us that they paid a hefty price to gain that top spot. Coincidently or not, Speaker Steele took his new position around the same time and who is Speaker Steele’s political consultant? The same Neva Hill that has been associated with Mike McCarville for decades.
Current Kris Steele political consultant, former Mike McCarville partner
and current Mike McCarville friend Niva Hill
Around the same time that McCarville turned on his conservative views, Speaker Steele became outspoken against “social issues” which has become a description for issues like traditional marriage, abortion, illegal immigration, guns, and other constitutional rights issues. Suddenly McCarville began repeating the same poll over and over again where it was asked “which is more important, the economy and jobs or social issues?” The same worn out poll would be posted every time a significant conservative issue surfaced at the Capitol, and exactly who originated this poll?
Capitol sources claim that it was none other than CMA Strategies, the RINO consulting firm responsible for the Oklahoma MAPS III campaign, the same firm that grew out of the old CHS consulting firm which RINO Congressman Tom Cole founded. After Cole was elected to Congress, CHS turned into CMA. And who presented the latest “polling” results at last week’s Republican caucus meeting? CMA Strategies of course, because they are the State Chamber of Commerce’s political consulting firm.
The influx of new money led McCarville to become less passionate on conservative issues with the exception of 2nd Amendment rights and suddenly press releases and stories from long time conservative allies were rarely being posted on the McCarville Report. A source inside the State Chamber of Commerce reported that McCarville was chastised late in 2010 for posting conservative articles, allegedly being told “those stories attacking Kris Steele should not be viewed as legitimate.”
But the money was rolling in for Mike McCarville with the new ” We Are Watching Them” campaign ran by the State Chamber of Commerce so it was said that McCarville took the admonishment in stride. It is sad to see a longtime conservative activist like McCarville knuckling under the pressure from the State Chamber but I suppose he needs money for his medical bills. McCarville continues to be conservative on Federal issues but he has literally sold his soul to the State Chamber on State and local issues.
So it was no surprise when Mike McCarville defended the Speaker Steele regime with his article that attempted to stir up a fight between OCPAC, The Sooner Tea Party, and The Oklahoma Constitution newspaper. The issue was raised at last week’s OCPAC meeting by asking the question “Does anyone know of any infighting between the Sooner Tea Party and OCPAC?” which was met with silence from the audience, not a single person thought that there was a split between conservatives on the major issues. Steve Byas was quoted in a subsequent McCarville report as saying that they could take the Conservative Index vote back into their own hands should the need arise. Several sources claim that only part of Byas's response was posted by McCarville but I've yet to be able to confirm that.
Even more interesting was watching McCarville bumping the Sooner Tea Party attack article up the list for the better part of a week. I wonder what that cost the State Chamber? Or was it just good customer relations from McCarville’s perspective? Either way, the self described "gold standard" blog has proven that it can be bought for the right amount of gold.
Speaker Steele Supports Social Justice Theology
So it is obvious that a lot of friction is occurring between conservative Oklahoman legislators and Speaker Steele’s leadership team. Political newcomers might wonder why, after all both sides are conservative and Republican, right? Wrong! Kris Steele started out as a member of Lakeview Baptist Church in Norman, studied there and became a pastor of the church. Controversy erupted while Kris Steele was pastor, which resulted in the church splitting into two separate churches, which was bad enough in itself but was made much, much worse when Kris Steele suddenly left town to become an associate minister at Wesley United Methodist Church in Shawnee.
Almost a decade later, many individuals in the two churches that were split due to Kris Steele’s leadership are still angry over Steele’s actions. We have investigators looking into the controversy, tracking down former members of the original church that are willing to talk and we will publish the story once we have a better handle on exactly what Kris Steele did to cripple the Lakeview Baptist Church. However, one point seems to already be solidifying in the controversy: Kris Steele’s support of Social Justice Theology.
Social justice Theology refers to the idea of creating a society or institution that is based on the principles of equality and human rights, and recognizes the dignity of every human being. The creed is very socialist and Marxist in nature and thoroughly anti capitalistic and anti free market economy. They focus on the equal distribution of goods and services despite one’s work ethics, feminist issues, exploitation of our planet, and are thoroughly anti military. Social Justice Theology is nearly identical to Liberation theology which grew out of the Roman Catholic Church in Latin America. The creed desires to free people from political, social, and material oppression. The Catholic Church eventually attacked Liberation Theology as it became identified with Marxist sympathizers.
Liberation Theory Principles United Methodist Church Principles
the unjust distribution of goods and services 163 IV. The Economic Community
the deep oppression of women, the elderly and children 162 III. The Social Community
the repression of races and ethnic groups 161 II. The Nurturing World
the unjust exploitation of physical, chemical, biological, and zoological nature 160 I. The Natural World
the injustice of an ever-expanding and necrophilic militarism 165 The World Community
Uh, chemicals have rights and their own lobby? Are we going to see a save the sodium chloride movement?
To show you how deep the divide is between Liberation Theology adherents and conservative values this Oklahoma City Methodist Church pastor’s article
is instructive. Paster Ward takes exception to the High Noon Club’s grilling of Speaker Steele in April of 2011
Ward attacks Christian members of the High Noon Club saying that “I suppose that some who were at that meeting believe that one must share their political and social opinions to be a genuine Christian.”
Ward pointed out that the United Methodist Church believes in Social Justice and added: “Methodists believe that Jesus calls for us to love all people, regardless of race, gender, religion or sexual orientation.”
So a lot of Speaker Kris Steele’s disdain for conservative values becomes crystal clear once you realize exactly what his values are and the type of people he goes to church with. His vote for the transvestite birth certificate bill and the same sex marriage/survivor benefit Senate bill is explained, as is his disdain for general conservative values. One can see why the State Chamber supports him and his lieutenants’ agenda as it is nearly identical with their own agenda. One also understands why Speaker Steele thought nothing of his pastor blasting Oklahoma values in the November 2010 swearing in ceremony prayer, heck he has to preach that drivel several times a week in his regular job at Wesley United Methodist Church in Shawnee.
As usual, we have no one to blame but ourselves for not looking into Speaker Steele’s past and his core beliefs before he came to power. Like Barak Obama before him, he is what he is and he has been quite public about his views since before he was elected. Unlike the Obama/ Jeremiah Wright pastor controversy, Kris Steele continues to attend the church and continues to be paid as one of the associate pastors of the church.
Now I am sure that there are plenty of Methodists that are not social justice believers so just to be clear we are not including them in the views that Wesley United Methodist Church supports. When I was a kid, being Methodist was a good thing. Has the church been taken over?
Is Spirit Bank Behind on Their Payments?
Last week we introduced Kell Kelly of Spirit Bank as the money behind Representative Skye McNiel. All those campaign donations and Todd Hiett's cut must be grinding down Kell Kelly’s finances because on Monday morning the KFAQ Pat Campbell Show revealed that Kell Kelly's Spirit Bank has not paid the last 5 payments on the $30 million TARP bailout money they received. The Feds sends in a Fed employee to sit in on the board meetings when they mis five payments, if they miss six payments the Feds gets to appoint two board members. Fast forward till around 39 minutes into the pod cast
to hear the story on Spirit Bank’s financial troubles.
And if you think that the Bailouts weren’t that bad, take a look at this GOA report
that states there was $16 trillion in Secret Bailouts instead of the $1 trillion that was reported.
December Republican Retreat
Turns Into a Speaker Steele Retreat
I’ve been writing for months about the battle raging inside the Republican House Caucus between conservative Republicans and progressive Republicans and bloggers like the McCarville Report have been dimissing the story. The first major defeat of the Speaker Steele regime was the October 26th Speaker Designate race and the fallout continues to reverberate through the House of Representatives. Last week’s newsletter gave the agenda for the Republican retreat and asked Oklahomans to contact their representatives and ask them to demand representative government.
The tone for the meeting was set on Monday when the meeting was pretty much dominated by the Speaker Steele/Hickman supporters taking the State Chamber tours and attending the State Chamber lobbyist dinner. On Tuesday the agenda was moved forward putting the State Chamber of Commerce propaganda… uh, “polling” program during breakfast. House leadership tried to act as if this was a last minute reorganization but there were ten very detailed and elaborate power point presentations along with two sided briefing sheets so they had planned the agenda change way in advance.
There were ten speakers between 9:30 am and 2:00 pm:
Representative Earl Sears presented the budget outlook.
David Dank covered tax credits
Phil Richardson covered water policy
Randy McDaniel covered pension reform
Jason Nelson covered DHS reform
Guy Liebman covered transportation issues
Jason Murphy covered government modernization
Glen Mulready covered Obama Care
Doug Cox covered OSEEGIB (Oklahoma State Employees and Education group Insurance Board) and Medicaide
Kris Steele covered corrections reform
The three most important issues covered were Representative Earl Sears and Representative Guy Liebman on merged budget and transportation issues, Representative Glen Mulready on Obama Care, and Kris Steele on his early release agenda.
Representative Sears and Liebman’s presentation centered around House leadership’s plan is to borrow enormous amounts of money to balance the budget and pay for road work instead of cutting the size of government or spending within our means. We are going to give out the specifics in next week’s newsletter.
Obama Care/Fallin Care is going to be forced down our throats against all opposition. Here is what Representative Glen Mulready’s told the attendees:
“Now listen guys, what we need to be doing is regard to Obama care… the state has already done all it can to resist Obama Care… what we need to be focused on as a caucus is a contingency plan if it isn’t ruled unconstitutional and proceed on implementing Obama Care.”
At this point Representative Charles Key was on his feet telling the legislators that they have a Constitutional responsibility to defend the state and the people from unconstitutional laws like Obama Care and that they need to be discussing nullification of Obama Care not caving in. According to several sources Representative Mulready began mocking Representative Charles Key on the nullification issue.
The final important issue was Speaker Steele’s corrections reform which is known as “The Soft On Crime Agenda”. Speaker Steele discussed the number of incarcerated women in Oklahoma, and then veered off to talk about drug crimes, then brought up the large percentage of minorities committing crimes.
Treat! This one is for the Republican House Leadership team: God is Gonna Cut You Down
Don't ever worry about the Tea Party or getting what you want, your should fear getting what you deserve.
At this point Speaker Steele’s frustration over losing the Speaker Designate race showed up when he made a backhand slap at Representative Shannon. Speaker Steele mentioned that the crime rate had dropped in Oklahoma City and Tulsa but was up 30% in Representative TW Shannon’s House district in Lawton. Speaker Steele quickly added “…but I’m sure that is no reflection on the fact that our new Speaker Designate is their representative.” Several attendees reported that the crowd was “stunned” at Speaker Steele’s thinly veiled racial comment.
Even more revealing was the fact that Speaker Designate TW Shannon was not allowed to address the caucus or provide input on the caucus agenda. Not only did Speaker Designate Shannon not get an initiation to speak but this was the first time the Speaker Designate was not allowed to address the caucus since 2004 when the GOP took control of the House of Representatives.
The purpose of the caucus meetings is to discuss a formal House Caucus agenda for 2012 and to discuss any House rule changes. Usually they discuss constitutional matters, public safety, pro life issues, or Second Amendment issues, those issues that are planks of the Oklahoma State GOP Party Platform. Instead of doing caucus work the event revolved around handpicked Speaker Steele lieutenants pushing indoctrination on their pet issues, with limited time for questions and answers, all designed to run the clock out on the meeting to avoid discussion the agenda or the rules for 2012. Rather than treat elected Representatives like adults, House leadership subjected the attendees to five hours of nonstop death by power point, including right through lunch!
When attempting to figure out why something happened and finding the answers elusive, I like to reflect on whether or not I am asking the right questions. And the old saying that doctors use “Think horses not zebras” comes to mind, the point being that one should consider the cause a common one before attempting to blame things on an exotic causation.
Taking in all the info, I believe that this entire highly orchestrated even was designed to avoid having rank and file input on the 2012 agenda, to avoid having to discuss Representative Trebilcock’s loss of his committee Chair position, and to avoid any discussion of the new Ethics Committee that Speaker Steele created.
Indicative of the poor planning and leadership for this event was the last minute scheduling of Representative Martin’s suggested new House rule that would have forced elected Representatives to sign a confidentiality oath before attending Caucus meetings. Martin even asked that a representative not be allowed to vote unless he or she had signed the oath. After submitting the new rule, recieving a second on the motion from Guy Liebman, and giving his reasons for the need of a new rule, Representative Steve Martin accepted questions from the attendees.
Representatives were on him like ugly on ape, bringing up the need for transparency in government, linking this proposed rule to the new Star Chamber Ethics Committee, asking that instead of more secrecy that the caucus be opened to reporters and the general public, asking that the legislature be subjected to both Open Meeting laws and the Open Record Act. Representative Charles Key, Gus Blackwell, and Jason Murphy did a great job at asking how oaths of confidentiality squared with the personal political beliefs of the members.
The Representative Steve Martin rule change went down in flames though with mostly the Speaker Steele/Hickman allies voting in favor with the exception of Representative Paul Wesselhoft, Mike Jackson, and Charlie Joyner. Joyner and Wesselhoft voting for the rule was a surprise. Mike Jackson isn't a surprise, he is a moderate Republican from Enid, although he is slightly more conservative than his Senate partner.
During the question and answer session on Representative Martin’s proposed secrecy rule, the Sooner Tea Party got brought up, not by name, but when asked for an example of leaks Representative Martin brought up the walkout when Representative Dan Sullivan spoke at the last caucus, the Speaker Designate voting record that the Sooner Tea Party published, the Skye McNiel article saying that the Tea Party was mocking the wholesome occurrence of birth, then mentioned that his secrecy rule itself had been leaked, and suggested that the leaks were a mean spirited attempt to embarrass and divide the caucus. Martin finished by saying “There doesn’t seem to be anything said in caucus that the Tea Blogger can’t get hold of.”
The proposed rule change didn’t get the supermajority required to implement it which was ironic because the supermajority requirement was added around 13 months ago at the first Republican House caucus meeting after the 2010 election. It seems that the rules that Speaker Steele created at that contentious meeting in Bartlesville have turned around and bit him in the hindquarters.
Once the secret oath rule went down in flames, House leadership postponed discussion of the rules till the next meeting. But there is much more to this entire story. Was the Representative Martin secrecy rule merely a ruse to distract attention from an even more tyranical method of surpressing the truth from being leaked? Are conservative legislators and conservative activists going to be targeted in the next session? Find out in next week's newsletter.
Treat! This one is dedicated to Kris Steele: Soy un perdedor
and no that is not a threat to the useful idiots out there.
Oklahoma's Own Joe Wilson Moment
Everyone remembers the September 2009 controversy over Congressman Joe Wilson yelling "You Lie!" at Obama during a speech. We had our own Joe Wilson moment on Tuesday when debate lead to an uproar between House conservatives and House progressives.
In June Speaker Steele removed John Trebilcock from the House leadership team for refusing to vote in lock step with House leadership. In November Speaker Steele fired John Trebilcock from his committee Chairman position in retaliation for Trebilcock supporting TW Shannon in the Speaker Designate race. Since this was the first caucus meeting since Trebilcock was fired, Representative Gus Blackwell took Speaker Steele to task for the retaliation. Speaker Steele responded by saying that Trebilcock was not removed for supporting TW Shannon but was removed for other reasons. Speaker Steele then called Trebilcock a “friend”. With that, Trebilcock had had enough. He had showed a lot of class up to that point, allowing others to defend him, not saying a word.
Representative Trebilcock was seething during Speaker Steele’s remarks but held his tongue until Steele repeated the accusation that there were valid reasons for Trebilcock’s being fired from the Chairman position. Trebilcock raised his hand to speak, then ripped Speaker Steele’s version of the facts to shreds point by point, using specific dates of events, then told Speaker Steele: “I was not going to engage in this but you have said something to the caucus that was not true. I was removed from the leadership team in June, and I can understand why you wouldn’t want me in your inner circle because I didn’t support some of your agenda. But you told me that it wouldn’t affect my Chairman position. What happened between June and November that caused you to remove me from the Chairman position?
Speaker Steele responded with “John, I didn’t want to raise this in front of everyone, you just weren’t there, you missed 30% of your votes.” Trebilcock responded “there weren’t any votes cast over the summer”.
With that, the room erupted in pandemonium as the representatives realized that Speaker Steele just got caught lying in front of everyone! Speaker Steele supporters freaked out at seeing their man caught red handed. Representative Dank starts yelling for a motion to adjourn, the meeting Chairman Representative Weldon Watson is yelling that he accepted Dank’s motion to adjourn while Representative Blackwell and Key shouted out their objections; Representative Reynolds is calling for a motion to table the adjournment and is shouted down by a very flustered Chairman Weldon Watson. The normal meeting rules are upended by the objections going unheeded and a vote is forced, adjourning the meeting in order to shield Speaker Steele.
This event was serious enough that Wednesday afternoon Representative Gus Blackwell sent an email to the Republican House members:
Dear Fellow Republican Legislator,
I do not use the term “caucus member” because, after Tuesday’s meeting, it is apparent our dysfunctional group is anything but a meeting of members of a political party tasked to decide policy. Obviously, our caucus retreat was not intended to be an opportunity for our caucus to discuss, debate, or decide policy. Instead, our caucus meetings have become carefully orchestrated and planned events, with little or no time for the actual discussion of caucus business.
The 2011 Republican Caucus Retreat in Shawnee stands as an outstanding example of what I am writing in this email. After a first day of tours and dinner, no caucus business was transacted. The second day had time for a breakfast with a political presentation, a 30-minute museum tour and five and one-half hours of other presentations, before staff was asked to leave and we actually began “caucus business.” Our discussions as a caucus lasted less than 45 minutes…out of the over 15 hours of scheduled activity.
Although I had requested to be put on the Caucus agenda over a month earlier, my topic, discussing Speaker Steele's removal of people from positions of authority, was relegated to the last item on the agenda. Realizing the lateness of the hour, I requested from Chairman Watson the topic be tabled until the next caucus meeting, so it could be fully vetted. He informed me, "No, the Speaker wants to address it now."
What followed was the one of the most absolutely abominable displays of caucus politics I have witnessed in the legislature. After just 10 minutes, while I had the floor and was responding to the Speaker, a motion was entertained to adjourn and quickly half-voted on.
As a senior member, who has been Acting Speaker, Speaker Pro-Tempore, Chair of three different committees, and who has served on every Republican leadership team except the present one, I would think I would be allowed to have more than two responses to speak on a topic I requested be discussed and which strikes to the very core of how we operate as a majority. However, I wasn't, neither was Rep. Trebilcock or any other members of the caucus.
The explanations given for the replacing of Rep. Trebilcock are just not plausible. Rep Trebilcock was fired from the Leadership Team in July and not replaced as Energy Chair until November. NO HOUSE VOTES occurred in that interim (only the Speaker Designate election). I’m curious how Speaker Steele knew Rep. Trebilcock (allegedly) missed 30% of his votes. In the past, members could only access their own information on that subject. Besides, he missed more votes before he was appointed and the whole subject is extraneous to his job as Chairman. The fact others weren't fired as Chairs is also irrelevant, since they weren't threatened, as he was before the election.
My question on the abuse of power, by the Speaker, extended well past the replacing of Rep. Trebilcock and into the myriads of other firings and resignations, which have occurred in the House. Another firing of a House employee happened yesterday, while this topic was being avoided. An employee…with just two days to go until her 25th year of service to the House of Representatives…was fired and escorted out, like a criminal. No longevity check in her stocking this year.
With power comes responsibility and accountability. While the Speaker may have the power to fire people at the House, he is still accountable to the Caucus for his actions. On Tuesday, December 6, 2011, his response to the caucus was simply to cut-off the meeting and go home.
His actions do not pass the infamous “smell test.” In this bucket, Rep. Dank, (the one which you carried) there is not even an inch of honey.
Representative Gus Blackwell, District 61
Oklahoma House of Representatives
Representative Blackwell painted a stark but accurate painting of Speaker Kris Steele's actions. I want to commend him for stepping forward with courage and laying this out for all to see.
I spoke with many legislators to get their reaction to the controversy. One said this was like a family problem, if it isn’t addressed then things will blow up. Another said that Speaker Steele’s leadership skills were poor, that the Speaker should have dealt with this man to man with Trebilcock. Another comment was that this isn’t the style of leadership that you would fight for and that if supporting Speaker Steele means that you will be marginalized the second you don’t agree with him 100% then Steele isn’t going to have a lot of supporters left. Another said that if the Speaker was confident and secure in himself then he could have handled things better than he did.
Others blamed the entire episode on Representative Hickman, saying that he was behind all the trouble since he was the real power behind the Speaker, one went so far as to call Hickman a “puppet master” and a “manipulator”. One legislator opined that the entire episode was orchestrated to distract the legislators from discussing the agenda and the House rules.
Many of the legislators that voiced their opinion on the controversy also believed that the Representative Steve Martin proposed secrecy oath rule was a crude attempt to remove enough Republican caucus members to force a new vote on the Speaker Designate race. Another legislator said that Speaker Steele was “unveiled” by his actions. Others stated that Weldon Watson aggravated the situation by breaking the House rules, calling his actions as Chairman at that meeting totally outrageous and a complete violation of the trust of the legislators.
The result of the controversial caucus meeting last week is that a lot of legislators are actually talking about removing Speaker Steele from power. There are issues with an outright removal of Speaker Steele. One claimed that rather than losing face, Steele would negotiate with conservatives. Others said that removing the Speaker would make the GOP look weak, as if they were incapable of governing. More than one suggested that TW Shannon wasn’t quite ready to step into the Speaker position and suggested that Gus Blackwell finish out the Kris Steele term so that Shannon had time to learn the ropes.
One thing is for certain. The Speaker Steele supporters are realizing that their days in power are numbered. It is now just a matter of time until one legislator, whether it is in caucus or on the House floor, stands up and says:
“Mr. Speaker, I move that the speaker position be vacated”.
As one legislator said, “The Speaker is realizing that he doesn’t have a gun pointed at the heads of the legislators and is going to get blowback if he continues believing he can do anything he wants.” Others like Representative Glen Mulready have already seen the writing on the wall; I’ll go so far as to predict that Glen Mulready will not run for his seat in 2012 or if he does he will have a hard time winning re election.
And since Representative Mulready stuck his head up and got noticed for his support of Obama Care, his opponent, Darren Gantz, is hosting a campaign kick off this Thursday night Thursday Dec. 15th, 8605 South Elwood Jenks Riverside Airport, 6:30 to 8:30pm. Airplanes, music, food and a chance to help defeat an iron clad State Chamber of Commerce lacky. What more could you want?
United Rural Animal Industries and
Sportsmen's Association Meeting
The next meeting for the United Rural Animal Industries and Sportsmen's Association (URAISA) will be in McLoud, Oklahoma on 17 Dec 2011 at 12:00 noon in the VFW building. McLoud is approx 15 miles east of Oklahoma City, 5 miles west of Shawnee and 4 miles north of I-40. Look for the McLoud exit.
Please encourage all hunters, fishermen, and livestock owners and anyone interested in learning what is going on in America to attend. The organizer is B.L. Cozad Jr and he can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
B.L. tends to approach everything from the viewpoint of the game fowl industry but he is 100% correct in his views that the Tea Party and conservatives face the same general enemies and our interests are intertwined.
Treat! The River
for the upset RINO Republicans after this next story
Ron Paul Wins OK GOP Straw Poll
The winner of the inaugural Oklahoma Republican Presidential Straw Poll was Ron Paul and he won by a landslide. The poll ended on December 5th which explains Herman Cain’s strong showing despite the implosion of Cain’s campaign over bimbo eruptions. Despite a few of Ron Paul’s positions that Oklahomans might not agree with 100%, they apparently overlooked the minor flaws and chose Ron Paul as the best candidate for president. I do the same, the few points where I don't agree with Dr. Paul are those that he would never be able to implement anyway so I personally have decided he is the best choice for the job.
- Ron Paul: 46%
- Herman Cain: 25%
- Newt Gingrich: 17%
- Mitt Romney: 6%
- Rick Perry: 3%
- Michele Bachmann: 2%
- Rick Santorum: 1%
- Gary Johnson: <1%
If you would like to support the Ron Paul movement, there will be a Libertea Rally for Ron Paul on Saturday Dec. 17 at 1PM on the South steps of the Capitol.
Oh, Quit Your Whining!
Last week’s article on the relationship between Representative Skye McNiel and Speaker Kris Steele caught a lot of attention in the blogshere. The McCarville report posted a story about our “attack” on Kris Steele’s disability then the Oklahoma Truth Council blog picked up the thread and advised me to “take a breath”. The McCarville Report is corrupt and their motivations have been adequately exposed, rather than reporting the news, McCarville continues to try to manufacture the news, destroying the credibility of his work, but criticism from the Oklahoma Truth Council warrants a reply.
First off, it was obvious that the article was sarcastic and horribly irreverent. Even the legislators mostly thought it was pretty hilarious. I’m told that during breaks at the Monday and Tuesday caucus meeting there were small groups of legislators gathering at the back of the room chuckling about the article and discussing the issue. Everyone understood that we were mocking Kris Steele’s propensity to micromanage his lieutenants and to attempt to dominate every aspect of Capitol interactions.
The Oklahoma Truth Council article
seemed to be more about trying to mitigate the idea that I “attacked” a baby, how Skye McNiel was passed over because of her gender, and how that it wasn’t the ten freshmen House members that killed Obama Care/Fallin Care but Senator Brown and Bingmam. So I think the article expressed that I offended his sensibilities and perhaps interfered with the Oklahoma Truth Council agenda. Nothing wrong with that and I appreciate the constructive criticism coming from a blog that is often found on the right side of things.
I used to gauge just how far I went with my sarcasm by reading the hate mail we received. Lately though, there has be a paucity of hate mail, not a lot of unsubscribe requests either, so the readers at large have either found the sarcastic, biting remarks more funny than offensive or they have resigned themselves to ignoring it. A third reason for the lack of feedback might just be that people are beginning to see why we ridicule our targets.
The thing about sarcasm and ridicule is that it is both memorable and difficult to defend against. Sure a solid, rational, well laid out argument against House leadership would convince a few, at least those that were so interested in Oklahoma politics that they would wade through such a dull topic. But the masses demand to be entertained while they learn, and everyone enjoys seeing the guy on the flagpole taking shots in his tukus. Telling a story about corrupt politicians and showing that they aren’t any smarter than the rest of us also cuts into their political reputation.
But the other points about sarcasm used in written form is that we usually depend on tonal inflection and gestures to realize that sarcasm is being used and like it or not, to interpret sarcasm involves second order interpretation of the writer’s comments, so the sophisticated understanding might be lacking in some people. It is said that the inability to determine sarcasm is present in those with certain forms of brain damage, dementia, or autism. Well, then… one has to do no more than watch who laughs at the more offensive portions of the Sooner Tea Party to determine their mental health.
.Seriously though, have we all become so politically correct that we can’t laugh at politicians when they show us how silly they can be? And Speaker Steele just seems to bring out the worst in people. I can imagine that were I in his class in third grade, I would beat him on a regular basis and steal his lunch money. Wedgies and toilet dunking would likely occur on a regular basis. A face like that just aches to be abused so it was no wonder that one of his childhood “friends” took a shot at him leading to a six figure settlement from the Daisy Air Rifle Company and the OTASCO store that sold the B.B gun to his parents.
Tea Party Values Part III
In October, right before the Speaker Designate race, we gave the sixteen most common values that the Tea Party stands for and asked the legislators if they were on our side or against us. I believe that the outcome of the Speaker Designate race was the answer, with RINO Republican House leadership taking a humiliating public beating and the more conservative TW Shannon winning control of the 2013 legislative session. We have written about the first two Tea Party values, opposing illegal immigration and supporting pro domestic private employment policies. Number three on the values list is our support for a strong military and that means protecting our veterans and our National Guardsmen.
America has long been known as a standard of peaceful government turnover using elections. Yes we fight, but it is with words. Our police used to be focused on policing communities, protecting and serving their neighbors and the majority of rank and file police officers still believe that this is their calling. However, the past decade has shown a slide in our values with people preferring security over freedom. The story “1984” by George Orwell is becoming more and more a reality after the Patriot Act, the creation of the TSA, and the increasing power of state, federal, and local police turn from protecting and serving into another philosophy “High Policing
High policing is when the government considers the threats from internal sources are more likely than external threats. They turn from investigating threats from foreign sources like Muslim terrorists and instead focus on domestic intelligence gathering. The entire focus turns from protecting and serving the citizens into protecting the government from the citizens. American service men and women have long had enormous support from the vast majority of the populations and have been looked upon as the defenders of liberty. However this is eroding as we saw the last few weeks when talk of the Senate amendments on the Military appropriations bill that would have turned America into battleground status and allowed U.S. citizens to be detained and investigated with little proof other than suspicions. The fact that citizens would not have the right to go before a court or a jury of their peers before being detained for the duration of the terror war was extremely troubling.
Stories of the new North American Command training soldiers for deployment in the continental U.S. are troubling for most civil libertarians. The Posse Comitatus Act has long protected Americans from having our own military turned on us without a direct order from Congress but the law is under attack all in the guise of “safety” and “security”.
Most Americans understand that police powers should be controlled locally so that the citizens have control over those police forces. The legislators of the State of Oklahoma should always be aware of their duty to maintain control of local affairs, to ensure that in the event of local needs, that the National Guard be used rather than our professional military. By keeping our military reserved for outside threats, the public will retain their admiration and respect for veterans and soldiers. If the day comes when the military is viewed as suppressors rather than protectors then public support will evaporate.
Past the use of Federal troops within the confines of the U.S. for policing citizens, our legislators should always support our veterans and soldiers. Last session saw a tax break created for veterans but it was delayed for years while corporate welfare tax credits for Boeing and another industrial concern were implemented immediately. We have seen our Oklahoma National Guard deployed in Iran and Afghanistan rather than using Federal troops, putting a burden on the families of National Guard members who tend to be older family men instead of young unmarried recruits.
Many believe that we should not be the world’s policeman because we cannot afford it as we are spending borrowed money that our children and grandchildren will have to repay. At the very least many believe that should we have to go into a foreign country to protect our interests, we should blow through there and accomplish our mission and get the heck out of the business of occupying countries.
Lastly, what American small town or city wouldn’t love to have an air base or army base? Is there a reason that we have bases in 135 countries around the world? Is there not another way to do this so that we are spending American dollars at home where our economy will benefit?
The Tea Party movement is completely supportive of our armed services and while many of the issues are Federal in nature there are things that the State of Oklahoma can do. Shipping the illegal aliens out of the state comes to mind so that returning National Guard members have a shot at getting another job once they return
Don't forget the Wednesday night work parties starting at 4 pm. Get involved; help us hammer the bad politicians until they become good politicians. This Wednesday we are going back to work Representative Jason Nelson's House district.
Call 405-412-6233 for more info.
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