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The Republican Party in Maine… May 21, 2010

Posted by WorldbyStorm in US Politics.

Okay, in the grand tradition of the Skibbereen Eagle the CLR brings you the following.

For those of you wondering about the philosophy of the Tea Party movement, and its impacts on more mainstream Republican thinking in the US wonder no more. There’s a good recent piece in Slate about their current approach and not least how they managed in Maine to amend the party platform in full. Granted, as noted in the piece…

Maine was an unusual case, too. Most state GOP conventions accept the party platform approved by the platform committee, which consists of party representatives from each county. When the platform reaches the floor, other delegates sometimes offer minor amendments. This time, though, one county committee offered an amendment that would repeal the original platform and replace it with a whole new document. It passed. Now the official Maine Republican Party platform explicitly opposes the Fairness Doctrine, advocates a “return to the principles of Austrian Economics,” and warns against “efforts to create a one world government.”

So it’s not as if this is likely to happen across the US. But as a sign of how the Obama victory has generated pressures to the right of the Republicans it is a good example.

Meanwhile, a thought. David Frum, conservative speechwriter for George Bush Jnr., pundit, columnist and actually quite a reasonable human being, has made some pointed comments about how the US right – of which he is a fully paid-up member – is rapidly detaching from reality in terms of actual politics – particularly in terms of the debate over healthcare where the strategy seemed to be complete opposition with no room for compromise.

And the result, as he put it? Defeat for the Republicans over healthcare and a victory for the Obama administration. Of course, in the ferment over the Tea Party all this is being lost, but this looks an awful lot like the machinations on the right during the 1990s where a significant chunk broke away to Perot, a situation that locked the Democrats into the White House for two successive terms.

Frum’s message has not been received well. Indeed, and although he protests that there is no connection, he lost his position at the right American Enterprise Institute thinktank… What’s fascinating about this is that there’s a sort of inability on the right to comprehend this. Or perhaps just a panic. Now, we could contemplate just why they’re in such a ferment, and whether it is the nature of the Obama presidency, or not… but…

And meanwhile, what of somewhat hapless Rand Paul, son of Ron, who got into a spot of bother… Well, I’ll let John Dickerson of Slate explain…

Maddow spent about 20 minutes last night quizzing Paul about his views on the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and he and the Republican Party have spent the last 24 hours cleaning up the mess. Paul said he believed that the federal government should not tell private businesses whether they could discriminate. He hated racism as much as anyone, he said, but believes that businesses that discriminate should be forced to change through private action: speaking out, boycotts, and the like.

As a practical matter, that ignores history and the human behavior of the time. But as a political matter, this just isn’t something a candidate says out loud—even if he believes it. At worst, it makes him seem to take racism lightly, and at best, it’s distracting. Before lunch, Paul had put out a statement that he would not support the repeal of the law.


Now in fairness to Paul, he ain’t a racist, but he’s a very silly boy – to paraphrase the Life of Brian – not to get how serious are the waters he’s dipping his toes into and the limits of his own ideological perspective.

Anyhow, back to Maine…

The document is well worth a quick read in full to get a handle on the concerns of the Tea Parties and how they seek to change the discourse. As noted above, the emphasis on Austrian economics is telling. As are one or two other pieces.


Maine GOP Platform

Page 1 of 4 To: Chair of the Republican State Convention
Subject: Proposed amendment to the platform as put forward by the committee.
Submitted by: Knox County Republican Committee.
Amendment: The proposed platform shall be omitted and a replacement platform adopted as follows.
In the course of a nation’s history, it is natural that political philosophies will evolve which run contrary to the original principles evident at the time of that nation’s founding. A nation founded in tyranny will by its nature spawn sentiment in direct opposition to that tyranny. Conversely, a nation which is dedicated to protecting the rights of its people, and seeks to bind the excesses of power which naturally accrue to governments, is subject to the evolution of factions which strive to throw off those shackles of restraint and gather power and influence over the people. Freedom is not a pre-existing condition into which everyone is delivered. Freedom and personal liberty are conditions of existence which are hard fought for and once won, must be maintained. Each generation must be taught anew the importance of eternal vigilance against those who would disregard the limits imposed on government, and usurp powers not granted to them by the people.
Today this state and the nation are in crisis precisely because we as a people have failed to maintain that vigilance. We have failed to pass down from one generation to another the critical knowledge and lessons that history provides. We have let rot from within, the foundation upon which freedom and prosperity must be built for it to survive.
This election cycle is unique in the history of both this state and our nation. We are presented with a situation in which WE THE PEOPLE, must re-educate ourselves and our neighbors, and put the knowledge of liberty to work in the elections this November. Years of neglect have allowed factions detrimental to the core principles of this nation, to entrench themselves in both political parties, and undermine the education of Constitutional principles vital to the survival of the republic.

The Tea Party movement is reminiscent of the principled revolt that led to the birth of the Republican Party in 1854. In June of that year, Horace Greeley referred to the newly formed Republicans as “…united to restore the Union to its true mission of champion and promulgator of Liberty…”. This year it is incumbent upon those Republicans who strive to protect and defend our Constitution, to reclaim that heritage.

It is within this context that We, the citizens of Maine united by free association as Republicans, dedicated to seeing the principles which brought forth the birth and ascendance of this State and these United States once again made dominant and pledge our unwavering allegiance, not to a political party, but to the Constitution of the State of Maine and the Constitution of the United States of America. The Republican Party is the vehicle through which we seek to better unify and promote those in pursuit of these goals. Page 2 of 4
The principles upon which the Republican Party was founded, to which we as Citizens seek return, and to which we demand our elected representatives abide, are summarized as follows:

1. The Constitutions, both State and Federal, are the framework to which any and all legislation must adhere.

2. State sovereignty must be regained and retained on all issues specifically relegated to the States by the constitution.

3. National sovereignty shall be preserved and retained as dominant over any attempted unconstitutional usurpations of such by international treaty.

4. It is the responsibility and duty, of “We the People”, to educate both ourselves and others; to demand honest elections free of corruption, and to hold our elected officials to the highest standards of honesty, integrity and loyalty to the constitution.

In pursuit of these principles we endorse and shall promote the following initiatives.

I. To Form a More perfect Union
a. All legislation must adhere to the restrictions outlined in the Constitution to protect the individual from intrusive government.

b. Direct the State of Maine to join with other states in asserting our 10th amendment sovereignty rights which protect us from unconstitutional federal government intrusions.

c. Insist on strict adherence to our 2nd amendment right to keep and bear arms.

d. Pass a “Read the Bill” act, to insure clarity, and eliminate the corruption associated with side issues, earmarks, pork or riders.

e. Oppose “Localism and Diversity”, the Fairness Doctrine or whatever else such attempted restrictions are labeled. Any restriction on speech is by definition NOT free speech.

f. Reject the Employee free -choice Elimination- act, as an unconscionable affront to the right to a secret vote.

g. Restore integrity to the electoral process:
i. Prohibit any public funding of advocacy groups such as ACORN, no matter what it or its affiliate organizations rename themselves; New York Communities for Change, New England United for Justice etc.; Conduct thorough investigation of their activities and voter fraud and prosecute violations.

ii. Eliminate motor voter and other voter fraud mechanisms; institute secure voter registration and identification systems.

iii. Reject any effort to give foreign citizens the right to vote in the US in any situation or capacity.

h. Oppose any and all treaties with the UN or any other organization or country which surrenders US sovereignty. Specifically:
i. Reject the UN Treaty on Rights of the Child.

Page 3 of 4

ii. Reject “LOST” the Law Of The Sea Treaty.

iii. Reject any agreement which seeks to confiscate our firearms.

i. Restore the process of assimilation of immigrants to preserve the benefits of an advanced educated and prosperous society. Rescind Maine’s sanctuary State status. No amnesty, no benefits, no citizenship -ever- for anyone in the country illegally. Arrest and detain, for a specified period of time, anyone here illegally, and then deport, period.

j. Pass a Congressional reform act which includes the following provisions:
i. Term Limits: 12 years only, in any capacity.
1. Two Six year Senate terms

2. Six Two year House terms

3. One Six year Senate term and three Two Year House terms

ii. No Pension

iii. Congress participates in Social Security under the same rules as the general public.

iv. Congress can no longer vote themselves a pay raise.

v. Congress participates in the same health care plan as the general public. No preferential plans or treatment.

vi. Congress is subject to and must abide by all the laws they impose on the general public.

II. To Establish Justice:
a. Restore “Constitutional law” as the basis for the Judiciary.

b. Reassert the principle that “Freedom of Religion” does not mean “freedom from religion”.

III. To Insure Domestic tranquility:
a. Promote family values.
i. Marriage is an institution between a man and a woman.

ii. Parents, not government, are responsible for making decisions in the best interest of their children, whether disciplinary, educational, or medical.

iii. We recognize the sanctity of life, which includes the unborn.

IV. To Provide for the Common Defense:
a. Discard political correctness, make public the declaration of war (Jihad), made against the US on 23 Feb 1998, and fight the war against the United States by radical Islam to win.

b. Seal the border and protect US citizens along the border and everywhere, as is the prime directive of the Federal Government.

V. To Promote the General Welfare:
a. Return to the principles of Austrian Economics, and redirect the economy back to one of incentives to save and invest.

b. Cut spending, balance the budget, and institute a plan for paying down debt. Proclaim that generational debt shifting is immoral and unconscionable and will not be tolerated!

c. Pass and implement Fed bill #1207 (Introduced by Ron Paul), to Audit the Federal Reserve, as the first step in Ending the Fed.

d. Return to transparent and honest reporting of economic statistics free of gimmicks and distortions.

Page 4 of 4

e. Require the government and all its agencies adhere to the same GAAP accounting rules that businesses must follow.

f. Restore the provisions of welfare reform removed with the stimulus bill.

g. Defeat Cap and Trade, investigate collusion between government and industry in the global warming myth, and prosecute any illegal collusion.

h. Freeze current stimulus funds, prohibit any further stimulus bills, and apply all unspent funds towards the debt they created.

i. Promote energy independence aggressively by removing the obstacles created by government to allow private development of our resources; natural gas, oil, coal, and nuclear power.

j. Institute Zero based budgeting on all programs.

k. Espouse and follow the principle: It is immoral to steal the property rightfully earned by one person, and give it to another who has no claim or right to its benefits.

l. Clarify that healthcare is not a right. It is a service. As a compassionate society we will aid those in need. However, the government takeover of healthcare is not only unconstitutional, but detrimental to the entire healthcare system. Only market based solutions will solve the problems.
i. In the state of Maine:
1. Remove the restrictions on health providers, (as was done in New Hampshire), to increase competition, drive down the costs, and increase the options available.
a. Bring Maine standards in line with national average.

b. Allow purchase of insurance across state lines. LD 290

c. Enact tort reform as exemplified by Texas.

d. Eliminate Dirigo

VI. To Secure the Blessings of Liberty:
a. Restore a vigorous grounding in the history and precepts of liberty, freedom, and the constitution to the educational process. As Thomas Jefferson said, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.”

i. Eliminate the Department of Education and restore schools to local control as specified in the constitution. [I must look up the US Constitution on that one… – wbs]

b. Repeal and prohibit any participation in efforts to create a one world government.


1. yourcousin - May 21, 2010


WorldbyStorm - May 21, 2010

🙂 or perhaps, 😦

Nice song too.

Seriously, how do you stand it?


2. yourcousin - May 21, 2010

Being as how I’m laid off, with plenty off Pabsts Blue Ribbon Beer (well not too much that could get expensive). Truthfully it is more complicated than it comes across. I have a very good friend who keep sign in their yard year round that say “Stop Illegal Immigration” but in their role as foremen have threatened to fire and blacklist white workers who harrass legal Mexican workers.

You deal with things the best you can. That’s it. You asked something similar with the guestpost of mine you put up. There is no answer. It has always been like this where I’m from.

To a degree you let a lot more bullshit go than you might otherwise but you draw much harder lines that if crossed result in bad things happening to people, if that makes sense.

My in-laws are going libretarian BTW and tried to recruit my wife and I as well. I don’t think they understand quite where we’re at in the political spectrum, but that’s partly because my wife and I both keep our personal and political lives very seperate.

But I guess I have to come back to the strict seperation of political and personal. My beliefs politically speaking are much more of a faith than ideology so they don’t have to conform rigidly to my life via some text analysis. I’m familiar with working class immigrant Catholicism and rural working class Protestantism (Northern Baptist specifically) out of Western Kansas. Belief in Industrial democracy, and the abolition of capitalism is just a given. Contradictions, illogical gaps, what if scenarios, are just part and parcel, that’s why you’ve got faith in the first place.

For example, two pieces which never fail to move me but are fairly contradictory.


If you must skip ahead to the meat of go in about in about 7:35


Tim - May 21, 2010

The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.. I do love that song, thanks!


3. BH - May 21, 2010

I like that song too, but The Band’s version is a slight bit different and better in my opinion…thought YC might have been a Henry Wallace supporter in ’48? MIke Quill was.


yourcousin - May 21, 2010

I too prefer the original but this is by far the most accessible version which I thought would get my point across better.

With all due respect to the progressive party I feel that third parties have always historically strived for flash positions which they have never been able to attain. I would have far more respect for them if they worked as hard to establish city council members and school board members as they did Senators and Presidents. I should also say that I don’t like Humphrey, but I love that speech. It truly is for me at least, one of the most moving speeches of the 20th century.


WorldbyStorm - May 21, 2010

That’s a very fine speech. Interesting character Humphrey, hadn’t really registered on my radar before this.


4. BH - May 21, 2010

Fair point. I suppose Baez singing that confused a few people at the time. Quill only supported Wallace because it was the CPUSA line of course. But its interesting the anti-segregation and anti-lynching aspect of his campaign in the New York TWU Transit Bulletin during 1947-48.


5. EWI - May 21, 2010

Now in fairness to Paul, he ain’t a racist

I think you’re very mistaken in this. Both Ron and Rand “yes, named after Ayn” Paul have a history of very unfortunate misunderstandings around race (as do their supporters and associates, shades of the Chairman and Catholic fundies), which don’t appear to be going away anytime soon.


WorldbyStorm - May 22, 2010

I wonder – not so much about Ron, as about Rand. I think his problem is he’s blatantly honest about his views which are on this issue terribly terribly foolish. But I take your point, there is a dog whistle aspect to this.


6. EamonnCork - May 22, 2010

There’s what I think is a very interesting article about the tea party movement and its implications in the May 27 issue of the New York Review of Books, nybooks.com, written by Mark Lilla.


7. Are cities allowed to promote/show political Flags and Banners? - May 23, 2010

[…] The Republican Party in Maine… « The Cedar Lounge Revolution […]


8. Eagle - May 24, 2010

I too oppose the Fairness Doctrine and Localism & Diversity. The latter has to do with talk radio, nothing else really. Yes some bands are worried that local radio coming under the domain of a national ownership will limit opportunities for them, but the real aim of these two provisions is to try to stop all those local radio stations delivering Rush Limbaugh, Glen Beck, etc.

Through a “Fairness Doctrine” and these somewhat silly views on Localism & diversity – they don’t mind centralizing power in DC, but they don’t like a centralized radio media to oppose them? – they want to try to restrict the power of talk radio.

All of this seems almost nuts in our era of hundreds of TV channels, infinite web sites, etc. And, why not force similar “localism and diversity” on the newspaper industry. And why not force NBC, CBS & ABC to put Rush on in Primetime to counter their left-leaning broadcast news?


WorldbyStorm - May 24, 2010

Mind you, so does President Obama oppose it too. So…


Eagle - May 24, 2010

Really? I hadn’t seen/heard that. I still kind of doubt he’d veto a bill put before him by Congress, but maybe he’s made it known he’d rather not see one.


WorldbyStorm - May 24, 2010

Well, there’s a lot less of a push on it than some commentators on the right appear to be making out, not least because the multiple outlets argument has considerable validity.


9. CL - May 24, 2010

The Tea Party (or parties) is a right-wing populist reaction to the severest economic calamity since the Depression, and to Obama’s policies in dealing with the collapse. If the economy improves enough to begin reducing unemployment this reaction will probably fade away. A big if.
With the widespread anti-incumbency mood the Democrats could lose control of the House and maybe even the Senate.
Although Randall Paul seems a certainty in Kentucky if he keeps his mouth shut, the Tea Party influence in selecting crack-pots in Republican primaries will help the Democrats if they can motivate the base to vote.


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