Sunday, July 22, 2007

Shocker : The Baltimore Sun is down on the GOP

One wonders how many interns got crushed in the editorial stampede for The Baltimore Sun to print its opinion piece "Can GOP bounce back?" (no that's not a typo the GOP is unworthy of an article in the Sun)

Don't let the title fool you. The author, self-hating Republican pollster Frank Luntz, paints a pretty dim view of future Republican chances. Ahh, the media loves nothing more than "Republicans" validating their view that the GOP is a gang of washed up losers who can do nothing right.

For the true believers reading this tripe, however, there is great solace in the fact Luntz's diagnosis is as flawed as his prognosis.

He begins by cherry picking some meaningless, generic poll numbers and then points out the obvious that the President's poll numbers are low and to make his point. It takes a few paragraphs before he acknowledges that the approval of the Democratic Congress is lower. (He dismisses this as one piece of good news is sea of bad.)

Not to worry, though, Good ol' Frank has the answer. Like all self-important political consultants whose ideological loyalty is as strong as the size of their next payment, his remedy for the Republican party is simple: Stop being so Republican!

His course of treatment is a "forward-looking agenda, unparalleled message discipline, a strict focus on the tens of millions of independent voters, an innnovative candidate and campaign and a lot of luck." You have to love consultants but let's break that down a bit.

Luntz claims that "the success of the Republican Party since 1980 was to eschew definition or brand." In one sentence, Luntz has revised the history of the conservative movement over the last three decades as non-ideological. Correct me if I am wrong, but a commitment to lower taxes, strong national defense, traditional values and pro-growth economic policies sounds a hell of a lot like a definition and brand. It is also the description of the stated beliefs of the Republican Party since 1980.

Even more absurd, Luntz suggests that the GOP develop a "forward-looking agenda" even though since 1980 "whatever hopes, dreams and aspirations people saw in themselves were seen in the Republican Party." Who exactly did that happen without an agenda, a definition or a brand?

These are just a couple of the astounding idiocies in this piece. I will let you, gentle reader, have a field day with the rest.

What Luntz ignores in his independent-loving, Reagan-denying pulp fiction is that the setbacks of our party have been the result of discontent within our party. It is not that we don't have a "forward-looking agenda" or a brand or definition its that we have leaders who have alternatively, ignored, denied or violated it. Lump in some scandal and a long and difficult war and you still have to be amazed that it will only take a 15-20 seat swing in the House of Representatives and 2 seats in the Senate to swing it back to Republican Control.

Whatever people think about President Bush, he ain't on the ballot in 2008. The barely more popular than pedophiles Democractic Congress will be.

We do not have to deny our success. We do not have to redefine ourselves. We do not have to change what we believe to court independent voters who choose to consider themselves above partisan identity.

We need to be true to our conservative beliefs, a well sold and markatable brand and recruit candidates that convince Republicans who want to be convinced that they really mean it this time.

While The Baltimore Sun may fall all over itself to print the views of a RINO consultant that our best days are behind us, it does not make it so.

Hang in there, we will get there.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Allegiances switch in Gilchrest-Harris race

As we have been speculating, two Anne Arundel delegates have announced their endorsement of Andy Harris against Wayne Gilchrest. The two newest supporters of the challenger Andy Harris are Delegate Steve Schuh (R-31) and Delegate James King (R-33a).

As reported by the Examiner both Schuh and King supported Gilchrest previously and, in King's case, were among the special guests for Congressman Gilchrest's recent fundraisers.

Will these switches of allegiance be a sign of strength for the challenger or dismissed as the Machiavellian positioning of ambitious politicians.

For consideration of the latter, let me submit the following from our friend Bud the Blogger before the announcement:

Kipke, Schuh and Dillon won't witch sides. They co-sponsored an event with
Gilchrest last week. All three have too much integrity to play both sides in
this race.

Enough said.

If you listened to the recent podcasts, you know we reported that Delegate King's camp was reaching out to Gilchrest to broker a deal for King's support in this race in return for Gilchrest's support of King for the 33 Senate seat in 2010. The report caused a bit of a stir and the heat from Delegate King's conservative backers apparently convinced him to switch sides.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Gather Ye Speculation While Ye May

(Cross-posted at Red Maryland)

We in the Conservative Refuge have been covering closely the machinations of local elected Republicans as they swear fealty in the Gilchrest-Harris Congressional primary. There has been no shortage of intrigue.

The lastest is that the campaign of Senator Andy Harris has announced a news conference within the next few hours (their release actually says Tuesday, July 18) to announce "Key Endorsements from Anne Arundel County Legislators". We know who some of these will be as local Senators Janet Greenip and Bryan Simonaire are a part of the Harris exploratory committee. It will be no surprise if other, as yet unaligned, Republicans join their ranks.

The question is whether some of those who were Congressman Gilchrest's "special guests" at his recent fundraiser (held the day after he joined the Pelosi-Murtha junta to surrender in Iraq) will switch sides. The camps of some of these officials have been denying their support of Gilchrest, though not publicly.

Will the Gilchrest loyalists stand by their man or will some sense a shift in the political winds and switch sides?

We will know soon enough.

Homer Simpson - Bane of Pagans Hero of the Faithful




In a brilliant promotion of the upcoming Simpsons movie (yes I will be there at midnight) the producers placed a large picture of Homer Simpson near a famous earth etching in the British hillside.


Local pagans are not happy. Apparently a large underwear clad man holding a donut reverently is less spiritual than a poorly drawn man carrying a stick. No sense of humor.
Three words. Best Promotion Ever!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Refuge Podcast # 38 - The future of the Republican Party here in Anne Arundel County

All the local conservative news and views await in the latest installment of the Conservative Refuge Podcast. You can listen by visiting here:

http://theconservativerefuge.libsyn.com/

In our opening segment, I share some news and comments on the mainstream reporting of the local blogosphere. You will want to hear how the liberal media ignores our strong local conservative blogosphere while Democratic politicians are stealing a march on their Republican counterparts by taking advantage of technology.

We are joined by our special guest, Jay Breitenbach, who served briefly as a Delegate from Anne Arundel county and was recently appointed as the newest member of our Anne Arundel County Republican central committee. Jay honestly addresses some of the controversy surrounding his appointment and discusses his goals as well as some of the challenges facing the party in the coming years.

In our closing segment, I weave some front page news and listener feedback to begin a discussion of how radical views once thought crazy are now becoming mainstream. As our society becomes more segmented and the media more diffuse, the public challenge to nonsensical "conspiracy theories" and crazy views has waned. What effect will this phonomenon have on the marketplace of ideas and the future of politics?

Listen in and share your thoughts!

Spread the word!

Greg Kline
Host, Conservative Refuge Podcast

This installment of the Conservative Refuge is proudly sponsored by the law firm of Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC. Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC has been a leader in the Maryland legal community for over 80 years. Contact them to assist you with all your legal needs at www.AdelbergRudow.com or call 410-539-5195.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Representin' on the Right

Funny how it takes a liberal politician starting a blog before the mainstream media realizes there is political blogosphere here in Anne Arundel County.

For the Capital it was Councilman Josh Cohen's blog. They ignored that other points of view may be out there.

Now the Sun has figured it out. In today's Arundel section, the Sun reports on the growing blogosphere here in the county. The Refuge is mentioned prominently and, if you did not know better, one might think it was the only conservative blog in the county. (The Sun never contacted me about the story.)

While I would love to have people think that, it is not true. I link to other local bloggers here and feature them on the Conservative Refuge podcast (which is a far better listen then Mayor Moyer's lefty-fueled rantings).

We will keep fighting the good fight in the blogosphere on the right.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

RedState - Maryland Style

One of the editor's of the premier conservative blog, Redstate, has opened up shop in the Maryland blogosphere.

The Maryland Politics/Red Maryland blog led by Streiff has already put up an impressive array of posts which I encourage you all to read.

Our friend Brian Griffiths has already signed on to cross-post and sure enough has brought his own inimitable style to the RedState's Maryland auxiliary. Think of it as a heaving helping of Old Bay.

Streiff has agreed to join us in the future Conservative Refuge podcasts and maybe, like a cold Natty Bo, you might see a cross-post from the Refuge in the future.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Refuge Podcast # 37 - Martin "Tony Soprano" O'Malley / Supreme Court Review

News, thoughtful analysis and some controversy await in the latest installment of the Conservative Refuge Podcast. You can listen by visiting here:

http://theconservativerefuge.libsyn.com/

In our opening segment, some breaking news on how the O'Malley administration is strong-arming localities to join the Governor's propaganda campaign to support massive tax increases. You will want to hear the details of this shocking story.

The blogger roundtable reviews the recent Supreme Court term and discuss how certain key decisions will affect national politics and policy. What do some of the cracks in the conservative majority foretell about the future direction of the Roberts' Court? Our blogger contributors offer their insight and opinion.

A follow up in our closing segment on the Harris-Gilchrest race. Our report on how local elected Republicans are lining up has generated considerable discussion. Listen in for the latest on this developing story.

Listen in and share your thoughts!

Spread the word!

Greg Kline
Host, Conservative Refuge Podcast

This installment of the Conservative Refuge is proudly sponsored by the law firm of Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC. Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC has been a leader in the Maryland legal community for over 80 years. Contact them to assist you with all your legal needs at www.AdelbergRudow.com or call 410-539-5195.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Who needs the Kwik-E-Mart? ....... I dooooo!!!



As an obsessive Simpsons fan, I just had to check out the converted 7-11 in Bladensburg made over to the Kwik-E-Mart. I was not disappointed.







(Chief Wiggum with my daughter Samantha (her hair was painted as part of her award winning July 4th costume)















The store had all the little touches that make the show great and, of course, all the great Simpsons characters.







Monday, July 02, 2007

Refuge Podcast # 36 - Republican Primaries Get Interesting

News, views and some controversy await in the latest installment of the Conservative Refuge Podcast. You can listen by visiting here:

http://theconservativerefuge.libsyn.com/

In our opening segment, some news you will not hear elsewhere about the Republican primary for Maryland's First Congressional district. You need to check out the details of how local politicians are maneuvering in this race in hopes of bolstering their chances in 2010. This is segment that I guarantee will have people talking.

The blogger roundtable, with special guest David Kyle, convenes for a discussion of Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney's "Mormon Problem". Can Gov. Romney say or do anything that will make evangelicals more comfortable with his Mormon background? Our blogger contributors offer their insight and opinion.

More news and comment in our closing segment about how the immigration debate is impacting local county politics and policy. Listen in and share your thoughts!

Spread the word!

Greg Kline
Host, Conservative Refuge Podcast

This installment of the Conservative Refuge is proudly sponsored by the law firm of Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC. Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC has been a leader in the Maryland legal community for over 80 years. Contact them to assist you with all your legal needs at www.AdelbergRudow.com or call 410-539-5195.