Running for political office in Texas? Here's what you need to know

Many people who vote on a regular basis are probably only starting to focus right now on who and what will be on the ballot this November. Yet with all the Tea Parties, 9/12 project groups, and other political commentators talking about getting our neighbors elected - to give Washington back to the people of this country - I wonder how many of those involved in such movements are truly aware that if they want good candidates to vote for next year in November, they should have started planning already. In fact, if you want to run for office in 2010, and haven’t gotten started already, it may be too late.
If you are suddenly feeling a sense of despair, you should know that there is still hope. Many organizations, like those mentioned above, as well as a group called Get Out of Our House!, are already working hard to find good candidates to run for office.
If you want to run yourself, you first have to decide if you are going to be part of one of the few officially recognized parties in Texas that will actually hold caucuses in March 2, 2010; namely either the Republicans or the Democrats. If you chose to join up with them, you’ll want to get with your party leaders to see what specific processes and rules that particular party has to become a candidate; and do it quickly.
If you want to run as an independent or a with a party that currently does not have automatic ballot access, you’ll need to be sure that once the primary vote in March comes around that you do not attend. It may seem a bit backwards to not go and vote, but the way Texas does it’s primaries, you are essentially limited to helping only one party select who it’s candidates will be. In other words, if you want to support he Libertarians, the Constitution Party or some other alternative, you need to wait until after the primary elects to start doing the official work they will need you to help them with; however, you should probably still get with them now to help with organizing efforts.
In order for a party, or an independent candidate, to get on a Texas ballot in November of 2010, the party or person has to collection tens of thousands of signatures during a 75-day time window that comes after primary elections are complete. Again, get with the party you are interested in helping to get details on what they need done.
I’ve assisted a few candidates with their campaigns over the years, and it’s hard work. It takes lots of time and money to get the tens or even hundreds of thousands of people you’ll need to recognize your name; let along listen to what you have to say. There’s also a great deal of paper work to be done; especially since the "McCain-Feingold" Campaign Reform bill that was past in 2002. It can be overwhelming to the uninitiated, but it is very much a doing able task if you have the support of friends, family, and lots of your fellow neighbors; or those with deep pockets.

Universal Health Care Points to Consider.

This is a bit late, but I needed some time to think about it and compose it.... Here's my comments on what another political commentator provided to me as points for Government Run Health Care:

"1. No gov't control or gov't run health care system. I haven't seen the gov't run anything efficiently...including themselves for years now."
I totally agree. In fact we should lessen the amount of government involvement we already have in health care (and many other things). The Federal government already pays for the majority of all health care provided in this nation. This is the primary reason so many people want a reform, because it's getting increasingly more expensive for Government to continue paying for it. What the current proposals basically do, is take all the money insurance companies currently make to pay for a huge budget short fall that will happen in Medicare and Social Security over the next few decades.
"The old get Medicare, paid for by taxes. Those in the riskiest line of work, war, get the Veteran's Administration, paid for by taxes. The poor get Medicaid, paid for by taxes. Then we have those who are employed by the Federal Government, the States, the County, the towns. Their health insurance too, is paid for by taxes, although the tax money mostly goes towards the profits of the private health insurance companies. So tax money directly pays for medical care of the highest risk categories. We pay high profit to the insurance companies for the prime, low health risks of public employees. Put all the people together whose health care is paid by tax dollars already and we've got about 60% of the population covered."

"2. Fed'l gov't eliminate the fraud that is in Medicare & Medicaid."
How? I agree, but it's not always that easy. From what I've heard it has been tried many times already, and I suspect it fails each time because of people playing politics. In fact my opinion is that a free society like ours will only survive so long as the majority of it's people are moral and honest, so I guess my answer would be more of a spiritual one then a secular or police state kind of answer. Having "leaders" in congress that don't show us good examples to follow certainly doesn't help.

"3. Tort reform. Put a cap on lawsuits, unless it is gross negligence by the doctor or hospital. Example, the soldier that went in to have his gall bladder remove and the surgeon removed his leg. Unfortunately, the soldier can't sue because his operation happen at a VA hospital.
4. Hold attorney (s) accountable for filing frivolous lawsuits. Disbar them after 2 frivolous lawsuits."
I think caps shouldn't be a set amount, but based on something like how the persons loss will affect their lively hood, or the livelihood of their family, plus reasonable lawyer fees.
Better yet, what I'd like to see is a broader reform of how lawsuits work in general. I've researched many situations (particularly around land usage - you know those dang ATV's, 4x4's, and speed boats. ;) ) were the plaintiff creates the situation that they then sue over, and since they have nothing to loose (especially when their lawyers are already paid for by the ACLU or the Sierra Club) they have no reservations about creating frivolous law suites. I'd like to see the defendants have a right to have a counter suit automatically entered as part of the same court hearings to pay for lawyer fees and time losses if the suite is shown to be frivolous, unwarranted, or possibly even for no other reason then the defendants win the case. It's easy to falsely blame someone else for something if you have nothing to loose yourself.

"5. Umbrella or co-op programs. There should be a regional, or on a national level a health insurance policy for Real-estate brokers, accounting field, retail, construction, IT, car repair shops, etc. It is getting to expensive for small businesses, to afford to provide health insurance for their employees."
Some would say co-ops are just another word for "government take-over". I need to understand them better myself, but I think the real answer is to get insurance for major medical, and then have a tax free health care savings account (similar to a 401k) that rolls over year after year, that your kids can inherit, to pay for everything else (and I'd use a broad definition of "medical use" that includes natural or alternative medicine if the person so chooses). Employers could simply be required to offer to contribute to the savings account in place of any other heath insurance they may offer (it's as simple as doing a direct deposit). It creates the same kind of competition that consumer driven spending has done for everything else to help keep costs down. If you decide to withdraw from it for non-medical use, you just have to pay taxes on it, and maybe some tax related fees.

"6. Allow insurance companies to cross state lines."
This is were the Federal government actually has power to get involved. If it stays within state borders, constitutionally it's NOT under Federal jurisdiction, but as soon as it crosses those invisible lines, it become inter-state commerce and is now up to congress to regulate and control it. Is that really what we want? More government involvement? This might be a good idea, but then again, it may no be.

Before there was insurance, it was up to the local towns to provide a doctor for the town. The doctors often didn't get paid much, but people who went to see them would often try to give them something to supplement their income. Hospitals were originally run by states, counties or private endowments, and today we still see hospitals that fall under those categories (all of which are considered to be non-prophet).  I don't have a problem with private doctors and hospitals, but for those who don't have health insurance for what ever reason, can still get health care from these state and county run facilities that we still have today. The only thing I would say is that if they can afford health insurance based on their income, but don't have it, they should get charged for the care or be given the option to not be treated.

"7. Hold insurance companies accountable for honoring their insurance policy. If the insurance company has been caught not honoring their policy 100 (or a percentage) times, place a big fine on them and put that money back into Medicare."
I've never had this problem, but I guess a lot of people do? It seems like it would be a breach of contract if they didn't honor their end of the policy, which is already illegal. Do we really need more laws in the area, or better enforcement?

"8. Do not tax health benefits that an employer provide for their employees."
I agree, No New Taxes... didn't Obama say that already??? or did I misunderstand...

"9. For a family that makes below X amount, give them a credit on their income tax of X amount for them to purchase health insurance in a co-op program. I don't think giving a person money to purchase health insurance is a good idea, because it does not guarentee that the individual will use that money to purchase health insurance.. example. 1 in 4 motorist in Texas does not have car insurance."
How about we just overhaul the income tax code. Simplify it. Give everyone a bigger standard deduction, put everyone into the same tax bracket or tax them at the same percentage (anything more is arguably unconstitutional due to Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 that says ". . .all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States"), and a few basic other deductions for things that truly require someone to need to keep more of their own money to pay for basic bills and necessities (like have kids/dependents, or for rent or taxes on a primary residence so long as the residence isn't excessive beyond the average home).

"10. Increase payment to doctors that take Medicare patients."
I though this was the problem.. Health care is getting too expensive. If you ask me Medicare, and other government payouts for medical bills are half the problem as to why it's getting more expensive. Do we really want the Federal Government having anything to do with setting prices; especially on Health Care, which is arguably one of the reasons heath care costs are going up.

"11. All hospitals require proof of citizenship before they can treat a patient."
Personally I don't think we want people dyeing in the streets for any reason. I'd rather see them get treated or at least stabilized to a point were they can be deported/transported to a hospital in their own country. Then send them the bill, or send the bill to their country. Not that it'll get paid, but you never know. If they ever try to return, or even think about trying to get citizenship, make them pay their bill first. Of course for this to work, we'd have to improve our boarder security, and relax immigration laws.

"12. Pharmaceutical companies need to be held accountable."
Sounds good, but do we have any good ideas on how this should be done, or were the real problems are to begin with? Personally I think a lot of drugs out there are unnecessary due to much simpler solutions your doctor probably doesn't even know about, but I'm not a physician so don't take my word for it. I do believe that a lot of our aliments could be avoided in the first place by taking care of our selves, but for those who choose not to, and want the drugs instead, who are we to judge?

"13. A pool for individuals with pre-existing conditions."
If we change the way we pay for heath care or how we obtain our health insurance, as I've commented on already, this will no longer be an issue.  Besides, isn't this what insurance is supposed to be anyway?  A Pool we all put money into, to be paid out of when problems arise?

"14. Have your doctor discuss with you and your family members about quality of life and your wishes. This should be up to each individual and not the gov't to decide if you should live or not or what the gov't will or will not pay for."
We all die, sooner or later, it's just a matter of when. (and no I don't think death is the end of existence). I do think that it's important to have health care available to a person if they chose to fight off a disease, but it should be the patients choice to decide if they want to go threw the treatment, especially if it has horrible side affects, or if they just want to treat the symptoms and make the best of what time they have left.

"15. Is health care an entitlement?"
No more then health Insurance is. It's not up to the government to make sure we are all caring for one another. It's up to us, and our local communities to do that. This has religious beliefs tangled in with it for me. Personally I do not believe that forcing charity on us threw taxes is really charity. True charity is done out of love for our fellow humans, not threw laws and governance.
If we want to make Health Care into an entitlement (just as it is with Medicare and Social Security today) then we need to be talking about a constitutional amendment, not a 1000+ page bill. In fact, I would say that Medicare and Social Security need the same thing, as I cannot find anywhere in the U.S. Constitution that authorized the Federal Government to administer such programs. According to the 9th and 10th Amendments, it becomes a State issue, not a Federal issue.

"16. Allow a person to take their health insurance policy to another state, or to another job."
See comments to number 5.

"17. Fine a person if they don't purchase a health insurance policy?"
Isn't tens of thousands of dollars of debt, and interest charges on top of that, for not having insurance for an emergency room visit, a big enough fine? If someone doesn't have insurance, or can't pay for a life saving procedure, that's unfortunate, but that doesn't meant they have to be treated anyway. As I've already said, we all have to die sooner or latter anyway, right? That doesn't mean we can't help them be as conformable as possible until they are gone.

"18. Define what essential care is. There should be different age groups. Like anyone from 0 to 21 years old, 22 to 40 years old, 41 to 60 years old, 60 to 100 years old."
This sounds like rationing to me. The only rationing I want to see is if the patient can pay for it or not (or someone can pay for it for them), and if they want it or not. It should be the patients choice, with their doctors advice, and what their choice of insurance coverage that decides what gets paid for or not, not their age, or some arbitrary definition of "essential care".

If we really want to go down this road of the Federal Government guaranteeing "essential care" as an entitlement, then we need a Constitutional Amendment stating what essential care is, and how the Federal, State, and Local governments are to work together to provide it.
Personally, I'd say that State governments should provide essential health care services for things like emergency room visits, child birth, hospice care for those in the late stages of a disease that is believed to take their life, and possibly a couple other things. Preventative care, diagnosis, and other such things are not what I would consider essential, and nothing under this new amendment should be considered as compulsory nor should the quality of the care be guaranteed. If people want high quality care, or preventative care, they should expect to pay a premium for it.

"19. If an individual is 65 years old and is still working, don't force them to drop their private health insurance policy to be on Medicare. Let the individual choose. John McCain said that if 3% of individuals that were on Medicare opt out of this policy, the gov't could save a tremendous amount of money."
Agreed... Personal choice and responsibility is the key to solving this mess, not relying more and more on the government. It's called being self reliant, but those in Washington who are drunk with power, know that the more the people rely on the government, the more power they gain over the citizens of this country. It's way past due time that we took back some of our own self reliance, and took away a great deal of the power of the Federal government.

Listen to a Prophet's Councel.

How would you like to go back in time and talk to one of the Prophets mentioned in the Bible? Which prophet would you want to talk to, and what would you ask him? What kind of advice could he give you today to help us with our troubled world?

Well, your in luck. In just a couple of weeks, you can have such an opportunity when the prophet of our time will address the world along with his two counselors, the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and other church leaders.

Prophet Monson

Direct from the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah: it's the 179th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Sessions start Saturday morning, October 4th, 11am Central Daylight Time.
Saturday Afternoon - 3pm CDT
Sunday Morning - 11am CDT
Sunday Afternoon - 3pm CDT

Sessions can be watched on the following channels:
Dish Network - 9403
Verizon FIOS - 265
Direct TV - 374
Any Cable provide that offers BYU TV

Also available via the Internet at or

Click here for additional broadcast information and world wide broadcast information.

It will also be broadcast via satellite to all LDS Stake Centers world wide that have satellite feeds.

Come join us, or tune in to any or all of the sessions.

- Posted By S.J. Hollist

Who's the real Racist?

Shortly after Obama was in office there was a few angry people who acted in some very despicable and racist ways. I even witnessed some Black people making some racist comments towards white folks. Fortunately all this was very limited and short lived, or was it? There is another side to this story. One I feel has not been told very well until more recently, because it was hard to prove one's point without being labeled a racist your self; however, I think more and more people are starting to get it, and seeing how race has been used as a tool to help further political agendas.

I've always felt that Racism will never go away, until race is no longer made to be an issue. This includes things like Affirmative Action, groups specifically formulated to focus on "Black" people in any way shape or form, and even those who praised Obama's victory as a victory for the "Black" community. I'm not saying these people or groups are racist, but that their efforts today are now backfiring and only drawing further attention to an issue that has been a very big issue throughout the history of the world; and yes with in the U.S.A. as well. However, it's an issue that most Americans today did not grow up with, or at least not the vast majority of people that I know.

Personally, I've never had hard feelings or concerns towards anyone simply because of the color of there skin. Certainly there have been those whom I disagreed with, and other that seemed rather different to me at times, having grown up in an environment predominately made up of people with the same color skin as myself; however, I've seen people of all colors who have been rather odd looking or even right down scary for one reason or another. I'm sure plenty of people have thought the same thing about me, but you don't see me calling them racist or getting all up in arms over it; do you?

Regardless, to my point, and the best way I know how to make it, is to quote those who've already been commenting on it:

According to an e-mail forwarded to me, originating from Lloyd himself, After this interview Lloyd was "threatened physical . . . called me a “Toxic Negro”. . . a sell out . . . a minstrel" gotten e-mails "express[ing] their outrage towards [him] by using the typical “F” and “N” bombs every other word".

Certainly these comments wouldn't be coming from White supremacists, or KKK members, would they? More likely they come from those who have been thought that they must fight for equal rights because of their skin color. They have been told that because of an unchangeable feature they were born with, they must have assistance and special privileges to over come something that happened to their ancestors over a hundred years ago. They may even have been told that white people are the enemy, and in doing so have been thought to be racist.

Lloyd said it even better himself, "I received angry emails from blacks who said I should be ashamed of myself. Apparently, they believe my not resenting whites and America is a betrayal of my blackness. I no longer feel the need to be patient with racist blacks. Just as we do not tolerate the KKK and white supremacists, we should not give a pass to racist blacks. Racism is evil...period."

You can Support Lloyd by visiting his website

I came across this interesting video on racism the day after posting this...

Are you a Racist? A Frank Conversation

A Forgotten Holiday

Did you know that today is U.S. Constitution Day? Most people don't. No banks or government offices will be closed today, and most of us will spend nearly half our time laboring to pay taxes to the various levels of government. Even our politicians likely won't take notice of the day. Shouldn't we do something meaningful with this day?

We should be mindful of the role the U.S. Constitution has played in the success of our own lives. We live the freest and most affluent lives of any people on the planet, and possibly in history. The U.S. Constitution is now the oldest governing document in continuous use anywhere, and has been crucial to the success of the U.S.

The U.S. Constitution gives us a system of government with divided and explicitly defined powers. It allowed for a Bill of Rights with strong limits on government action. The politicians have waged a continuous and largely successful assault on these attributes of our Constitution, but even so, the Constitution has continued to protect us often enough to make it a very important, if unappreciated, contributor to our daily lives and personal well-being.

Most importantly it helped solidify the religious freedoms that the original anglo settlers came to the great land to find. This religious freedom allow many Christian religions to flourish that had otherwise been persecuted and oppressed by government sponsored and intolerant religious sects, and eventually provided a spring board for them to reach back into the rest of the world.

Wherever governments have less power, and the people more freedom, affluence, security, and peace reign. And wherever governments have more power, and the people less freedom, misery flourishes. The scriptures are full of examples of God blessing those who able to freely worship him. In the U.S. even our poorest citizens live as kings compared to much of the rest of the world. A strong case can be made that only the Constitution has very much to do with this.

The Supreme Court has many times declared some act of Congress or the President as un-constitutional, preserving our freedom and prosperity. A number of times Presidents have vetoed some over-reaching act of Congress, or when Congress has acted to curtail the power of the Executive. Likewise, the Senate has often blocked actions of the House, and vice versa. In this we see not only the genius of the separation of powers, but also the continuing efficacy of the Bill of Rights.

The separation of powers works. The Bill of Rights works. The Constitution works.

What doesn't work is a Federal government that has far overstepped it constitutional foundation. A house that ignores it's original design, without updating or re-enforcing it's foundation, will not stand when the rain descended, and the floods come, and the winds blow, and beat upon that house; and great will the fall of it be.

Ask not what the Constitution can do for you, for its gifts have already been conferred upon you in great abundance. Instead, ask what you can do for the Constitution. Speak up strongly on behalf of the Constitution's preservation and adherence. Please remind your Congressional representative that today is Constitution Day, and that they swore an oath to serve, protect, and defend the Constitution.

Enumerated Powers

DC Downsizer Michael Mitchell of Alaska compiled this list from Article I of the U.S. Constitution. These are all the powers that the Congress has.
  1. Borrow money
  2. Regulate commerce among the states
  3. Regulate naturalization
  4. Regulate bankruptcies
  5. Coin money
  6. Fix weights and standards
  7. Punish counterfeiters
  8. Establish post offices
  9. Establish post roads
  10. Record patents
  11. Protect copyrights
  12. Create federal courts
  13. Punish pirates
  14. Declare war
  15. Raise an army
  16. Provide a navy
  17. Call up the militia
  18. Organize the militia
  19. Makes laws for Washington, DC
  20. Make rules for the Army and Navy
And that's it! Mitchell continues, "According to the 10th Amendment, all else is controlled by the states or the people."

Go to's Enumerated Powers Act campaign.

According to Judge Andrew Napolitano that number is only 17 (I wonder what three he missed or combined). According to Mr. Napolitano:

"Congresses used that power to control the conditions for production and sale of goods that eventually made their way into interstate commerce. And modern Congresses have used that power to regulate any human behavior they wish, so long as the behavior, when combined with other similar behavior, might conceivably affect the movement of goods or persons in interstate commerce. Thus, today, the water you drink, the air you breathe, the size of the toilet bowl in your bathroom, the number of legs on your desk chair, the strength of the water pressure in your shower in your home, the amount of wheat you can grow in your yard, the amount of sugar manufacturers can put into ketchup, the words you can utter in public or private, are all regulated by the Congress, claiming power under the Commerce Clause."

He also points out that: it would take the "state legislatures of 34 states to enact a resolution by a simple majority vote of each house of the states’ legislatures [to instruct] Congress to convene a constitutional convention. . ."

But as Glen Beck points out, "when the Founding Fathers met in Philadelphia for their constitutional convention their orders were to do nothing more than “amend the Articles of Confederation.” By day three they had unofficially agreed to abolish the Articles and create a new form of government". I think Glen has a point here. Without elected officials that truly believe in doing what's right for the people, instead of making themselves more powerful, a constitutional convention would likely lead to the end of our government as we know (or even knew) it. What we truly need are good people to stand up for what's right in the face of almost certain death; something the founding fathers themselves actually did.

Who's really behind the Transformation of America?

Glenn Beck - Current Events & Politics - Glenn Beck: Why Obama's Speech Doesn't Matter

As Glenn has pointed out many times, it's not the specifics that matter, it's the structure that's being created threw government bailouts, health care reform, and other backdoor amendments to bills.

Is Obama behind it all, with his "Transformation of America"? He couldn't be, as much of it started with President Bush. Obama inherited the TART bailout, for those of you who have forgotten. Automakers were already asking for handouts under Bush, and then Obama came along and wanted a "bailout" for the people; or so it seemed.

Although Bush did go along with a lot of these things, it should also be noted that it was the Democrats that had the majority in congress for the last two years of his tenure.

So who's really behind this if Obama is just another Pawn in the game? We'll, I wouldn't say Pawn -- Bush was more likely a Pawn -- but maybe a Knight, or a Bishop, or maybe even pawn who has been promoted to a Queen. It does beg the question, however, who is the King? Who is the one person who would be behind all of this? Who would want to control our lives, to make us live a certain way, buy certain kinds of cars, get only the health care that is cost effective, eat less meat, give up our sovereignty for a new world government, want us to be a part of a well funded civil army, etc.?

Could it be billionaire George Soros? I've heard a lot about him over the last few years, but could he be behind a fundamental change in America? The only reason Soros has power, is because his money is considered desirable by so many.

On the other hand, being a believer in God and Satan, I must point out that Satan's original plan was to take control and power and force us all to be saved; taking away our free agency. Perhaps he still wants to, and has been putting such desires into the hearts of powerful men since the beginnings of this mortal world. Perhaps he is the one who is truly behind all of this. Perhaps he is the real "Anti-Christ" spoken of in Revelations that so many Evangelicals fear.

If we only had more people in office who cared about who they represent, more then they care about were their next campaign funds are coming from. If only we had more Americans seeking out such people to vote for them regardless of political affiliation. If only...

Spaldam's critique on Obama's Speach to the Kids

I personally don't remember a president addressing my while I was in school, but apparently it has happened a few times before.

Regardless, Obama's speech was very inspirational, though it did seem to have some undertones of his Liberal agenda in it.

Anyway, here it is:

I've actually enjoyed hearing Obama's speeches for one main reason. He is saying something I think the nation desperately needs to hear. Too many of us have expected too much for too long while putting in too little of our own efforts to achieve our goals. It truly does take hard work and perseverance to make something of one's self, and it also takes the hard work of many good individuals to make a nation truly great.

This same speech coming from a conservative president probably wouldn't have gotten any concern or scrutiny from all the concerned parents we keep hearing about, and most of that concern was centered around the questionnaire that was to be given to students after the speech; especially the one question that was thankfully removed which asked kids what they could do for President Obama. After all, a nation that is of the people, certainly isn't their to server their President; in fact it's quite the opposite in that the President, along with other elected officials, are there to server the people of this country.

I sincerely Hope his speech was inspirational and motivational to many kids that might otherwise not have been motivated. However, when you start to add it to many of Obama's agendas on "Green Jobs" that's was being lead by a self proclaimed communist, emergency powers to do unprecedented things during crises like pandemics, or knowing that socialized governments tend to bread lazy people, and you start to wonder if his speech was more of a conditioning of the upcoming generations to accept his "Fundamental Transformation of America".

Of course a single inspirational speech of this kind isn't going to brainwash anyone's kid, but from what I'm hearing, it's obvious that depending on the person's point of view and beliefs, his speech is and will continue to be interpreted in many different ways.