Thursday, November 02, 2006

my political rant

It's that time of year again. The air is crisp, halloween is over and Thanksgiving and Christmas are just around the corner. And of corse there is the stench of politics.

Yes, turning on the TV or getting the mail is like watching a big, political, Jerry Springer show. So while I don't usually stump for candidates or issues, and this blog was really set up to let friends and family around the country in on Lincoln's latest milestone or Cooper's escapades at school, today I am going on a political rant.

SIXTH DISTRICT


Watching the ads in Minnesota's 6th District, neither Michele Bachmann nor Patty Wetterling want me to vote for them. They each want me to vote against the other. I have decided to oblige both of them and vote for independent John Binkowski.

Both Wetterling and Bachmann have just seemed to go off the deep end. Each commercial a little worse than the one before it and all of them taking the truth and twisting it into a unrecognizable distortion of reality. I just cannot feel good about voting for either of them.

I have watched a couple of debates and have been doing some research and I have been impressed with Binkowski. He is young and I don't agree with him on every issue (I think even if I ran I wouldn't agree with me on every issue) but he seems intelligent and optimistic and certainly not the venomous nature of the other camps.

EDUCATION FUNDING

I am supporting our local levy for school funding. I do think our local schools do a good job of trying to be fiscally responsible and trying to do their best to educated the children of our community. Once again, I may not agree with the way they want to spend every dollar, but I think they are trying to do their best to manage the educational system in our community.

Honest people can disagree on the issue, but what I can't stand is the people who don't have kids in the school system and don't want to support it simply because they don't think they should have to help pay for it. If that is the case then there is a lot of money I want back from the government.

This cannot be all about US or even OUR kids, it has to be about the community. It has to be about all the kids in our community and giving them at least a chance at a decent education.

To me the issue of education is much bigger than this school bond. I think we need to rework the way funding for education is done in our country. I think education may be the most important effort that the State is involved in, and to deny people a decent education based on where they live is ludicrous, and we should be ashamed. The lack of education is a form of oppression. Educating all children is a benefit to our society.

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

I think George Bush missed a real opportunity to shine with Kerry incident. There is no doubt that Kerry has a bad case of Foot in Mouth disease. But imagine what could have happened if instead of jumping on it for another stump speech the president had said something like, "I don't think Mr. Kerry believes that our troops are uneducated or lack courage. We have honest disagreements on the corse this country needs to take fight terrorism, but I am not going to use a gaffed joke aimed at me to tear him down."

I really think he would have gained more support that way than he did pouncing on it to try to make political hay.

None of us are perfect, but when our political leaders say the Jesus is the biggest influence in their life and they have chances to be graceful and forgiving and humble, I would just like to see them take more advantage of them.

So, let me climb down from my soapbox and take care of my kid. I think he is waking up from his nap.

15 comments:

Chris Good said...

Vote GREEN Party! But Really, I can't take the ad's. Those two that you mentioned, are driving me nuts. I am voting independant, just because I won't approve their messages of mud slinging and lies.

The Charlebois said...

Remember, too, that a good number of those ads are put out by groups independent of either Bachmann or Wetterling. Unless you hear their voice saying "I approve this message," their hands never touched it.
I am voting for Bachmann. She is a firm woman of faith who loves the Lord and her family. AND she has great policies and knows what she believes. She wants to crack down on government spending and is big on personal property rights, which I think are huge. She's very firm in her belief that marriage is between a man and a woman and values the sanctity of human life. She supports local control of schools so parents can make more decisions. She supports the fair tax act which I support.
My biggest beef with Binkowski is that he supports gay marriage, a move which endangers all of society, since family is the key element of society. God does not support homosexuality. Binkowski loses my vote right there. Additinally, he beats around the bush on abortion. He seems to be opposed to it, but won't take a stand against it and protect babies lives. On top of that, he wants to leave Iraq a job unfinished and doesn't want to support our troops over there making a huge difference.
Vote on values!!! I don't think it's wise to vote for someone simply because you don't like their TV ads. We need to look at the issues at stake and vote for the lesser of the evils. I don't approve anybody's mudslinging either, but I'm not going to vote contrary to Biblical principals just because the adds are annoying me.

welch said...

Audra,

I do understand the difference between commercials put out by the candidates campaigns, the RNC/DNC, and special interest groups. And both Wetterling and Bachmann have put out vile ads. I think that is a character issue. They both work to polarize people and lie in order to win an election. I think this may be the biggest issue of our time, the purposeful and wanten polarization of our country for person and political gain. I think honesty, compassion, humility, reconciliation are values, and are Biblical principals. Is it not possible for us, especially those of us who are followers of Christ, to disagree with civility?

I respectfully disagree that gay marriage is what endangers our society. First, I think heterosexuals have done a pretty good job on their own messing up families. Second, I really don't see how it endangers families.

I really think we as Christians are thrown off our true mission when we think we are to achieve our gains through political means. I see nothing in Jesus' life or teaching that suggest that the political system is the way to morality.

Jesus lived under one of the most brutal and barbarous governments on the earth. He choose disciples that spanned the political spectrum. It seems to me that so many of his contemporaries missed out on Him being the messiah because they were expecting a political leader. The expected a messiah that would throw off the yoke of the Romans. But he didn't do that. He didn't stand up and demand an end to the oppressive tax system when he had a chance. He didn't seek the power of this world, so I don't know why we spend so much time focused on that as the means to change the world.

I appreciate your comments and I appreciate your devotion to voting on the issues you think are most important. And I want you to know that (while I am not perfect about it) I try to approach these things with humility and the understanding that I may be wrong in some areas and that I have a lot to learn. But these ads are an expression of the larger political verbosity and I think it is destroying our society more than taxes or gays. So I believe on Tuesday I will be voting my values.

God bless

Chris Good said...

I'm not voting based on annoyance, I understand the difference between a ad that was given by their campain and those that were given by some other party or private interest group.
What I don't like is seeing these ad's taken apart on WCCO and finding out that even the ones from the canidates office are distorting, being 'untrue' and not giving the whole story. All which falls under the catagory of lies.
I can not and will not vote for someone who openly lies. I also feel that the 'Christian' angle has become a campain stratigy and to some degree we are being played.
I haven't made my final decision on anyone yet. However in the 6th district election I am disapponted at best.
This has been a horrible political season, and shows that our politicians are willing to take us to a new low.

margaret said...

Chad, you took the words right out of my mouth. I am so with you on this.

Why does it always seem like we are voting for the lesser of two evils?

The Charlebois said...

You're right, Chris, this has been one of the worst political seasons I can recall. I've worked in TV for nearly 5 years now, which means I'm surrounded by the ads and press releases and mudslinging day in and day out. It really wears me out.
Chad, I appreciate all you said. I do have to say, though, that I deeply disagree with you when it comes to gay marriage. Marriage and family is a God-ordained institution that He set up between a man and a woman. By re-defining marriage, we're saying that God's idea is outdated and wrong. Our society prizes what seems fair, more than what is true. God's word is true.
The same-sex family will teach our little boys and girls that husband/wife and mother/father are merely optional for the family and therefore, meaningless.
Only months after legalizing same-sex “marriage” in Canada, activists there successfully passed C-250, a bill criminalizing public statements against homosexuality, punishable by up to two years in prison! People who quote the Bible are being sent to jail. The same will happen here.
Finally, I believe same-sex marriage will open the door to polygamous and incestuous marriage. Where will it stop? Just "one more" step further?
God defined marriage and family and I am not about to be in any way involved in telling God His idea wasn't the best.

The Charlebois said...

P.S. Chris - the only anti-Wetterling ad that WCCO did a "Reality Check" was one that was not endorsed by Michelle Bachmann. There were lies, yes, but the NRCC paid for the ad, not Bachmann.
Michele has only approved four ads - two positive and two negative.
I will just be happy when Tuesday is over with and we can all just watch TV without being bombarded with all of this!!! Aaaaaahhhh!!!! :)

JP Charlebois said...

We are definately being played by all politicians, but that is not new. Lies and smear tactics are as old as man and his quest for power. The only politicians that appear to not do this probably don't have the money to make it happen like the "big" candidates. As for gay marriage and it's effect on our society here is just a portion of the agenda they adopted in 1972. While man is his own ruin there are acts and lifestyles that we are being told are harmless that are anything but. Gay or straight these goals are very harmful. I have left the numbers in so you can match them with the list of federal and state goals easily found by a google search " 1972 gay agenda"

6. Federal encouragement and support for sex education courses, prepared and taught by
Gay women and men, presenting homosexuality as a valid, healthy preference and
lifestyle as a viable alternative to heterosexuality. (1972 Federal-6)

9. Immediate release of all Gay women and men now incarcerated in detention centers,
prisons and mental institutions because of sexual offense charges relating to victimless
crimes or sexual orientation; and that adequate compensation be made for the physical
and mental duress encountered; and that all existing records relating to the incarceration
be immediately expunged. (1972 Federal-9)

The desire for sex offeders to be released based on an opinion that the crime was victemless scares the crap out of me.

3. Repeal all state laws prohibiting solicitation for private voluntary sexual liaisons; and
laws prohibiting prostitution, both male and female. (1972 State-3)

I guess that one would be a good thing.... Just kidding their agenda is very destructive and harmful.

7. Repeal of all laws governing the age of sexual consent. (1972 State-7)

I hope you have a watchful eye on your kids because this is not a passive desire. The detestable organization "NAMbLA" North American Man/boy Love association is real and they want your kids. (according to them the lower case "b" is intentional.)

8. Repeal of all legislative provisions that restrict the sex or number of persons entering into
a marriage unit; and the extension of legal benefits to all persons who cohabit regardless
of sex or numbers. (1972 State-8)

Number 8 is the proof that they will not stop at same sex marriage.

There are many destructive forces in our society but none with the drive or publice acceptance as the gay agenda. I am not a hateful guy but wrong is wrong. If for no other reason their agenda is enough for me to keep my kids out of public schools. They are coming for your kids and you are fooling yourself if you think that is too extreme.


JP

welch said...

Audra,

I understand anytime you want to stop the dialog. At some points these conversations go in circles, but there are a couple of things I would like to reply to.

Once again I ask what in Jesus' life or teaching suggest we are suppose to seek a political solution to immorality. Certainly the Roman government that Jesus lived under was not family friendly or moral.

When we try to legislate people into morality it seems to me we are trying to be self-righteous. That is we are trying to find righteousness through ourselves.

I'm really not sure that, "same-sex family will teach our little boys and girls that husband/wife and mother/father are merely optional for the family and therefore, meaningless." I certainly don't think it can do any worse than the heterosexual family has done toward that end.

If I had to decide which I think was going to make a larger negative impact on my kids, two guys getting married or the venomous rhetoric of our politicians, the later certainly is more likely to have a direct, negative impact on my kids.

And if we are going to use the Bible to define marriage, then it seems to me the definition of marriage is one man and one or more women.

Family is a wonderful gift from God. It is a great thing, but it is not THE thing. Sometimes I think we focus too much on the family.

And what if we spent less time worrying about the gays and focused on sins that are a little closer to home. Jesus spoke a lot about money, the whole rich man into heaven thing. What if we proposed a constitutional amendment that said no one in a company could make more than 10% of the lowest payed employee. Let's focus on the sin of greed and materialism for a while.

welch said...

JP,

There are a lot of ways we could go here, I am going to try to touch upon a few things.

First, why do we have to accept the fact that all politicians lie and use smear tactics. Why can't we demand better? Especially from those who tout their relationship with Jesus as their reason for running. I am not saying they need to be perfect, but come on, do we have to expect them to lie and act uncivil? Are Christians really ready to sell out for so little?

And no one has yet to address my core question of what in Jesus' life or teaching leads people to suggest that politics holds any kind of place in advancing the kingdom? Do we really think the we live under a government worse than Jesus did? Weren't the Jews expecting a messiah that would come with a political solution, but what they got was a humble carpenter that died on a cross?

Yes, I know NAMbLA is real. So are skinheads and all kinds of other fringe organizations on the left and right of the political spectrum. And guess what, the skinheads wants your kids too, and if they think they are afraid of homosexuals they will try to turn that into hate and eventually into hate of any people who are different than them.

And yes, my son goes to public school. I am heavily involved at the school. In his classroom, in the PTO. I know many of the teachers and the principle and people who work at the school. I think our school system here is great. I'm sorry if you think otherwise.

I would like to leave this with a little scripture:

Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. For,

"Whoever would love life
and see good days
must keep his tongue from evil
and his lips from deceitful speech.
He must turn from evil and do good;
he must seek peace and pursue it.
For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous
and his ears are attentive to their prayer,
but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil."

Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. "Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened." But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. It is better, if it is God's will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit


1 Peter 3:8-18

The Charlebois said...

My statement about politicians is a general one. There are a great deal of decent ones. The majority of them are not at least it seems that way. I would love to and often debate voting for a third party candidate that actually lives out the values that I do. Unforunately in our system my vote would just be taken away from one of the two major parties. I think writing letters to them and makeing phone calls demanding integrity is a great way to speak up. Both of them I have done. I just accept that the person I am voting for is not my ideal for my family and my children but they will vote in favor of laws that I agree with. That is the essence of our system. We are voting for a person who will vote on the issues the way we would. God warns us in the word that kings will most of the time not have our affection but they are put there to carry out tasks.

to use politics to advance the kingdom won't work. I didn't address it because my post got too long. Jesus didn't get a vote to have a say in the government or I believe He would have. He exhorted us to pray for our leaders and Proverbs speaks about the success of the nation being hinged upon the righteous laws or standards of it's leaders. Again voting is not our means of advancing the kingdom.


I am aware of the skinheads and all the other bigots and wackos out there. I will work very hard to teach my kids righteousness as I am sure you do too. I think it's great that you are involved in your public school and your childs life. You are the exception not the rule. As long as you stay involved in your kids lives they will be fine and be products of you and your wife and not the postmodern thought of the general public. I think you have a great opportunity to minister Christ being involved in the way you are. I will do otherwise with my kids but that doesn't mean I think you are wrong for not. I applaud your faith to be involved.

As for the bibles definition of marriage God never said multiple wives was OK. The fact that He didn't kill David or Solomon for it is no different than not killing us for our sins, mistakes or shortcomings. Two guys getting married may not hurt your kids but a school coach or teacher who agrees with the gay agenda and thinks age of consent is wrong could. Imagine beautiful cooper being seduced at the age of 12 or any age for that matter by a man or woman who sides with the 1972 agenda points? That is what scares me for all of us and our kids. Sexual abuse is a very destructive thing. Our kids will learn the truth about the wickedness of man from the bible at a very young age and they will be fine just as we are.

Greed is a terrible thing along with all the other sins of man. The communists would love for no one to be able to make more money reguardless of his worth or ability to perform. To legistlate against success would be destined for failure. and what then would happen to those of us who risk all we have to provide for others. Should my income be limited? I make way more than anyone who works for me. Yet I pay them all more than what they are worth and minister in many ways with my money. should I pay them even more or myself less because greed is a sin. Is my high income a result of greed or God's blessing because of my generosity? Do we legislate against all because some are corrupt? I assume you would agree.

Be blessed in all you do Chad!

JP

The Charlebois said...

Chad,

You're right, nothing in the Bible indicates that God wants Christians to use the power of government to spread the gospel. In fact, Jesus' command to give to Caesar what is Caesar's , and to God what is God's implies just the opposite. Only God has the power to create His kingdom on earth, and it will occur at His appointed time. But that does not mean that Christians should not take Christ's teachings to the polls when they participate in the political process. Jesus promoted righteousness in public places. He was heavily involved with the political leaders of the time, the Pharisees and Saducees, etc. He preached THE KINGDOM - that is government. And in Israel, the process of annointing a King was a spiritual, God-involved process. The Bible talks about the importance of Godly leadership all over the place. God's hand is all over politics in the Bible.
God has revealed His truth to us in the Bible. A Christian worldview based on the Bible should affect the way in which Christians approach the major issues of the day.
Matthew 28:18-20 says we are to go out and make disciples of all nations, teaching them to obey God in every area of life. This includes politics. We must make godly decisions about government, and promote the efforts of those who are already doing so.
There is no such thing as separation of church and state. Our nation's government was founded on Biblical principles and every election we slip further and further away from those convictions in the name of tolerance.
I can hardly believe that you think negative TV ads are going to have a greater negative effect on your children than legalizing gay marriage. That absolutely boggles my mind. I can't even comprehend that way of thinking.
I also think you think too lowly of the family establishment. The family was the first thing God established in the whole world. His kingdom is based on family - God the father, the Holy Spirit as the mothering role, and we his sons and daughters as joint heirs with Christ. Family is vital and central, biblically speaking.
Finally, God's definition of marriage was never one man and many women. That was a distortion He never approved of. He created Adam and Eve. It's all through the New Testament - dudes should have one wife.

I think this scripture encapulates it all:
Prov 14:34 Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin [is] a reproach to any people.

welch said...

JP and Audra,

I appreciate your passion and civility. I would be happy to address the other issues, but there is just one thing I want to comment on tonight.

I think it is exactly the reason that most parents are not involved in their kids education that those that are should not abandon the public schools. The kids do not get to choose their parents involvement. Even if you choose not to send your own kids there I think it is important to stay involved in the public education system.

welch said...

This is the last comment I am going to make on this post. I believe the conversation has reached a point where discussing online is not really viable. I would be happy to have you in my home to break bread and continue the conversation if you wish, but I think it would be difficult to continue it here.

Let me say that while I don't know you (JP & Audra) very well, I think I know you well enough to say that you do what you do with a heart for God and a longing to walk the path He is guiding you on. I appreciate your passion and commitment.

Obviously no one believes their opinions are wrong, or they wouldn't be their opinions, but I have tried to approach this with humility and openness, though I admit I am far from perfect in that area.

I wrote this originally because I have felt, as I think others have, that the race in the 6th district had gone so low that I couldn't feel good about myself supporting either candidate. It sadness me that Christian candidates can reach to the same lows for political power.

So here we are again, back at the beginning. Like I said, I have no problem continuing the conversation and perhaps you would break through the hard nut of my opinions, I just don't think it is viable to do in this forum.

Thank you for your input and God bless.

The Charlebois said...

Thanks, Chad.
We love you as a brother in Christ and appreciate your heart as well.

Happy Voting! :)

JP & Audra