Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Not again! Another blogger and gubernatorial sex

VUI has been presented with shocking information that links a lowcountry blogger to drunken sex with a candidate for Governor of South Carolina and other SC politicos.  The staff is trying to get it cold and the lawyers are reviewing what we have.  But, oh, my what a scandal it could be.  The stuff we got will make Will Folks blush if it is true.  What a scandal.  Wow.  The lawyers and the sense of ethics of our Editor keep us from naming names, but wow, if this stuff checks out, it is going to be change the race.  What boggles our minds is that most reporters in South Carolina for the mainstream media seem either too ignorant or lazy to see what is right in front of them.  We know that they sat on the Sanford emails with his Latin lover, so we conclude that they are sitting on this bombshell as well.  

Maybe their lawyers are as careful as ours.  But, wow.  We are all tracking Hurricane Earl  and hope that he does not make too big of mess in South Carolina.  

Friday, August 27, 2010

John Spratt, the Congressman from union bosses

Big labor loves big government politicians, even those big government politicians who will not let anyone record their remarks at campaign events.  While it seems Congressman John Spratt is afraid to allow the so called “little people” to record his remarks as he campaigns, the Congressman sure is loved by big labor.

The Hill magazine reports ratings scores from different groups for members of Congress.  John Spratt’s strongest ratings come from big labor and he has done his best to represent them before South Carolina.

The AFL-CIO gives Spratt an 82.  The National Education Association, the union that is for status qua bureaucracy in education, gives Spratt an A.   The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) gives Spratt a perfect score of 100.

The rating from AFSCME should be of special interest to Fifth Congressional District voters.  That organization walks lock step with the Obama agenda, and even has an open letter to John Spratt on its website encouraging Spratt to carry the White House’s political water.  Spratt’s perfect score from AFSCME lets you know just how cozy with the White House Spratt really is.

Further, support from the AFL-CIO and AFSCME also underscores Spratt’s support of the bill that would take the private vote away from workers who face a union vote.

It is no shock that big labor supports such a big government guy like Spratt.  They have a lot in common.  Both think that the average guy can not take care of himself without their help.  Both make big promises after playing on fear and convincing people how powerless they are without them.  Both big labor and John Spratt live well on money taken from people’s paychecks, while always coming up a bit short on the promises made.  It is little wonder they have such a close relationship.  They are two peas in a pod.

That said, the people of the Fifth Congressional District need to decide if they want a Congressman who represents them, or one who represents big union bosses.  While the union bosses are falling all over themselves to praise their Congressman Spratt, what about the small business owner in Great Falls, or the non union factory worker in Lancaster, or the teacher in Ft. Mill who did not join the NEA, or the police officer in Newberry who can not afford to give a percentage of his paycheck to the bosses of AFSCME?  Who is representing them and the tens of thousands of like them in the Fifth Congressional District?  It is certainly not John Spratt.  

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Conservatives need to reject racists

Liberals and Democrats tell people over and over again that conservatism and racism go hand in hand.  It is an easy and cheap political shot for them.  It allows them to be a bit intellectually lazy and forego arguing the issues of the day.  Such folks cry racism, avoid the debate and ignore the fact that legendary conservative leaders like Ronald Reagan and Jack Kemp were nothing close to racists.

Indeed, when one looks at Reagan, a man who loathed racism so much that he, as the President of the United States, drove out to have dinner with an African American federal government employee to make his point and Jack Kemp, a man who died with African Americans among his best friends, one can see the old conservative movement was one based on ideas, not on race.

But, today’s modern “Tea Party” conservatives readily play into racism charges.  That is for good reason.  For too many of them resent an African American as President of the United States. They cling to untruths, such as notions the President is not really a citizen or that the President is Muslim. Far too many of them use racial slurs and jokes in describing the President of the United States and his family.

Before some readers cry foul and “not us,” remember that the folks who work for VUI have been there at the “Tea Party” meetings.  We have heard such racial slurs first hand.  We have seen the ignorant fury about the President’s citizenship and religion firsthand.  As meetings started up and people were chatting over coffee and the like, we have heard things that would make Jakie Knotts look like a man of Liberalism.  So spare us the comments in self righteous indignation.  VUI knows better.

That is what shakes us to our core.  True conservatism is not about racism.  A true conservative believes that all people are equal, and will succeed in a world of lower taxes and limited government.  A true conservative wants all people, whatever their race, to do well.  We true conservatives believe that freedom works for everyone, not just white people.  We want government to get out or everyone’s way and believe if it does so, all can achieve.

That is the conservative and Republican agenda the likes of Reagan, Goldwater and Kemp believed in and fought for.  Chances are those conservative stalwarts would be called “RINOs” by those who have hijacked the conservative movement.  Indeed, God help all three of those men in this day.  Reagan was the son of a drunk Irishmen who had not a racist bone in his body.  Goldwater had Jewish blood in him.  Kemp died with an African American his best friend.  Some white, well paid, smartass would blog on how each of them were RINOs and not true believers.  God help them if they actually believed President Obama was wrong on most issues but was actually the President of the United States.

Some Republican activists and pundits VUI knows tell us to keep quiet about the race thing.  They think, as unsavory as it may be to them, it will win the GOP back the Congress and get Nikki Haley elected Governor of South Carolina.  Well, as Barry Goldwater would say, “To Hell with that.”

We are going to tell it like it is.  And how it is ain’t pretty.  Far too many who claim to be conservative today do not have a clue about the ideals of freedom and constitutional principles.  Instead, they are ticked some black guy got elected President.  Frankly, as conservatives, VUI is sick of those people.  Indeed, if you go to some Tea Party meeting, and get past the racial slurs about the President, if you challenged the people there to rattle off the Bill of Rights, chances are they would not have a clue.  It is the antithesis of what men like William Buckley, who supported the Civil Rights movement ,as essential to true conservatism, and what Reagan, Goldwater and Kemp wanted the conservative movement to become.

Conservatism is about ideas, about sticking to freedom.  That means freedom for everyone.  If the GOP and  conservatism are to become some movement against the black guy in the White House, so much will be lost. True conservatism has not one moment to  be wasted on racism.

If folks don’t like that opinion of ours, so be it. 

Monday, August 23, 2010

Blame it all on Bush (parody you greedy lawyers)

In light of the indictment against former Major League Baseball player Roger Clemens, the United States Congress decided to act against its own members recently by demanding its own leadership to undergo tests for drugs and alcohol.  It seemed like a good idea among rank and file members, but the leadership was a bit miffed.

“Zoloft is not a drug that should be tested for,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated with defiance.  “In this economy George W. Bush created, people have to have an anti depressant just to function.  We cannot and we must not punish Democrats for medicating themselves in light of the Bush agenda.”  When someone pointed out to the Speaker that Bush left office over a year and half ago, she remarked, “He did?  So that explains that black guy keeps calling my office all the time.  Still, I will not be tested.”

Senator Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, was not as worked up about prescription drugs as the Speaker.  Instead, Reid was worried about being tested for alcohol.  “George W. Bush drove me to drink.  Even worse, he drove the Vice President to drink.  That clean, articulate African American that Joe works for drinks, too.  It is all Bush’s fault.  No, you cannot see what is on my computer.  Yes the image looks like Sarah Palin, but it is because George W. Bush put it there and sent me bourbon. I am sure George Bush has an interest in the bourbon industry.”

“You still want to talk about that image on computer? "  an angry Reid asked.  “It is from that guy in South Carolina, go talk to him.”

Former House Ways and Means Chairman, Charlie Rangel, under investigation, was against any investigation.  “Do I drink, you bet I do.  Who doesn’t after George W. Bush?  I fought for this country, served this country in Congress, and I do as I damn well please, and after Bush, a man like me is owed a drink by his country. You ask me about my drinking after you fight some North Koreans.”

House Budget Chairman and South Carolina Congressional member John Spratt muttered things that were not comprehensible.  A spokesman for Spratt  issued a statement that said the reason for the Congressman not being able to communicate was because of George W. Bush.  “In 2000, before George W. Bush took office, the Congressman was able to answer any and all questions.  But, due to the distress that Bush created, the Congressman has no comment.,” the spokesman said.

Down on the South Carolina coast, Congressional candidate Rob Miller was angry as usual, as his spokesman set his own hair on fire.  “ Just look at what George W. Bush has done.  He fathered Joe Wilson.  He made Nancy Pelosi take pills, he drove Harry Reid to bourbon, he made a good man like Charlie drink in his old age, and now George W. Bush has made John Spratt an absentee candidate. George W. Bush is going to raise your taxes, take your health care away and make your mama starve.  Don’t you stupid people see that?  Joe Wilson is his clone.  Joe Wilson wants your mama dead.  You idiots get that?  I was a damn Marine.  Joe Wilson was not.  He said you lie.  Why can't you stupid people get that?  I need something to hit.   Arggggggg.”

There was no reports of candidate drug testing.  Further, the former President, George W. Bush, is reported to be at his home in Texas, only leaving to attend an occasional sporting event or to greet troops returning home.  When asked about all the Democrats blaming him for their current woes, the former President was candid.  “I gave up drinking a long time ago. Drinking clouds your judgment and makes you misunderstimate your own situation.”

It is unknown if Roger Clemens and his legal team will blame George W. Bush. 

Friday, August 20, 2010

The federal government has no business in sports

Former Major League Baseball player Rogers Clemens was indicted by a federal grand jury for lying to Congress about whether or not he used steroids to enhance his playing ability.  The alleged lying happened in February of 2008. So, after tens of thousands of tax dollars spent, law enforcement resources used, and Congressional staff time used, the federal government is finally ready to go after some baseball player for lying to Congress about his own drug use.  

Don't misunderstand VUI, we do not condone lying to Congress, we are just saying if you going to spend money and time going after people for lying to Congress, go after people from government agencies and big corporations.  Whether or not some baseball player lied about using steroids is not going to hurt anyone but himself.  But, if government officials lie or an insurance company official lies, that hurts people.  

Frankly, it is absurd that Congress would hold hearings about some sports or entertainment issue.  What's next, hearings on Lindsey Lohan?  Knowing this Democratic Congress, they will probably hold hearings to determine if professional wresting is real or not.  

Thursday, August 19, 2010

RIP Rod Shealy

South Carolina Republicans lost one of their legendary political operatives when Rod Shealy lost his battle with cancer recently.  Shealy was 56, but left his mark on South Carolina politics through his political consulting and newspaper ownership. 

There will be those who will bring up Shealy's more controversial moments, but VUI will not.  Instead, we will simply state that South Carolina politics lost one of the greatest players of the game.  Two sons lost a father and two grandchildren lost a grandfather. 

Prayers and sympathy go out to the Shealy family and friends.  May God comfort them in this time and may Rod Shealy be remembered well.  

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Is the United States at its end?

There is a lot of talk on the Right especially about the end of the United States as we know it.  Former Reagan official David Stockman correctly points out that the United States cannot maintain its current rate of deficit spending.  The deficit numbers are off the chart.  If we continue at the current rate in deficit spending, the United States will become a banana republic.  Those numbers are what they are.  

Yet, is the tact of others, like another Reagan official, Paul Craig Roberts, that worries VUI.  Roberts argued recently in a published column that revolution was the only way to save the United States of America.  Roberts is not alone.  Revolution, albeit it couched in soothing language, is the clarion call for many on the far right and far left.  The left believes that the United States is evil in its intentions, and is passe.  The far right believes the American people are pretty dimwitted to have elected Obama as President of the United States.  Both sides are eager to toss away constitutional rights to get their way. Big money is involved and it appears to buy off politicians of both parties, leaving the average guy hungry for something to believe in.  So, that average guy clings to the radical, the different, on the right or left.  He hangs his vote and belief on anything other than what is.  
Such has happened before.  During the world economic crisis of the 1930s, otherwise decent folks got behind the evil beasts of fascism and communism. People clung to something to believe in. Politicians sought and gained power around the globe taking advantage of those hopes and fears.   What resulted was the most devastating war in human history.  

Are we headed down that same road now?  Frankly, VUI does not know.  What we do know is that the United States of America, even with President Obama in office, remains the best hope for mankind.  The United States remains a strong economic engine to itself and the world.  More importantly, the United States is a moral compass for the world.  Here, in the United States, we champion human rights, we allow people to worship freely, and we stand for freedom.  Nowhere else in human history has a people been so committed to the ideal of freedom.  In our entire existence, we have often been the good guys, standing for freedom. If our experiment of over 200 years fails, humanity fails.  

We cannot allow that to happen.  We must be vigilante and stand up for the constitution that has enabled the steadiest and freest coexistence of humans in history.  We need leaders, on the right and left, who inspire us to be the great people that we are.  We are the world's beacon of hope and as such we should always strive to achieve and reach beyond.  Indeed, when it comes to problems like the deficit, the only real way out is for us as a people to grow and produce.  Tax increases and spending cuts will not do it.  Only economic growth through the the striving to do better will get that done.  

The United States of America is a strong nation and is filled with strong people.  The only way we fail is if we do not have the belief in ourselves and one another to move forward.  Clever political operatives on both sides, looking for gains, tell us otherwise.  They are wrong.  We are the people who created the automobile.  We are the people who created the airplane.  We are the people who went to the moon and created the internet.  Such a people cannot fail unless its leaders convince them that they will.  It is time for leaders to believe in us and believe in America.  Even if such leaders do not emerge, we as a people must stand tall and lead on our own, being sure that in the words of a poet, that we "not go gentle into that good night."

Another Top 9 for this week

The staff that are not the sports fans that the Editor is went into revolt over their proposed Top 9 not getting published this week.  Since the state and nation are going through tough economic times, they thought their Top 9 was a public service.  Frankly some people need the advice. So, here we go, another Top 9 for the week, this one is the Top 9 things not to say when you are interviewing for a job. 

9) This jersey I wear is of my favorite football player.  He is always late to things, too, but he gets the job done.  Ohhh, sorry about that...ate barbecue at lunch with one of some very important people, like T-Bone, but you got to admit that was a good one.  Admit it, I can tell from the look on your face. 

8) Mam, excuse me, but before we go any farther, are those real?  Can I get a quick photo for my blog?

7) Hey, do you want one of these beers?  I got a cooler full of them.  

6) No! No!.  Just Go!  I ain't got to answer that damn question! No!  I am the Democratic nominee for US Senate. Get off my property!  Oh, I am in your office.

5) You are not going to make me take a drug test are you? 

4) Hey, take a look at this porn video I have of me on my smartphone. That's me.  See how hard I work, baby. 

3) Why did I leave my last job?  Well, those people accused me of stealing money.  But, I just took what was mine.  Now, that I am  running low, I need a job.

2) Let's make one thing clear.  I hate people telling me what to do.  I don't take that crap from my ole lady and I ain't about start taking it from you.

1) My biggest failure in life?  Well, I never made love to a midget.  I always wanted to.  You got any single midgets working here?

Sadly, the above were taken from real life interviews.  And, we wonder why China kicks our butts.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Tragedy hits the SC Prep gridiron

We at VUI love football at all levels, especially the high school and youth levels, where I, the editor of VUI coach.  My nightmare is not losing to some rival as much as it is seeing one of my boys toted off the field in an injury.  It is any coach's nightmare.  

That nightmare came real for the coaches of Lewisville High School, the team members, the supporters, the parents and fans.  Lewisville running back Brian Colvin collapsed on the field and died soon afterward during a scrimmage in the Chester County Jamboree.  From various reports, it was no jarring hit or the like, the young man just collapsed out of bounds. 

From various accounts VUI has received, Colvin was a good kid that was eager to lead his Lewisville team to the Class A playoffs.  Colvin had the character and skills to do so.  Losing such a young man is incredibly difficult for those around him and frankly, it leaves me with little to say.  I have no reasons for such things to give.  I have no words that will comfort the kid's family, his coaches, his team, or his friends.  There is really nothing that can be said.  

It is a tragedy that goes beyond the game of football.  It is heartbreaking to learn of such a thing.  I love the game.  I love what it means to small towns like Lewisville.  But, when a kid is lost, all that seems so insignificant.  The staff of VUI joins me in offering prayers for the family of the young man, his teammates, his coaches and the Lewisville community.  All those folks need God's comfort, our prayers and our support.  

You can help the Colvin family deal with the loss financially by donating to the Brian Colvin Memorial Fund at First Citizens Bank, 3551 Lancaster Highway, Richburg, SC  29729.   

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I will join the President on being one of the bad buys on this one

My position on the following issue might shock some longtime readers.  I might offend you.  But, it is something I made notes about and thought out.  This one is all me.  There is no staff member to blame.  In fact, the staff disagrees with me on this strongly.  Let's get to the point. 

The President of the United States was right in stating that Muslims had the right to buy private property and construct a mosque on that property close to the World Trade Center site.  The decision that the Muslim group made to do so was one of the most insensitive and politically incorrect decisions of all time.  Their decision is an insult to the people who died on September 11th and those who survive them.  Words cannot describe the insult.  Whatever their motives, they set back the standing of Muslims in America for decades.  That is the cold hard truth.  The Muslims who want to build the Mosque near the World Trade Center site should have the awareness to back off. 

For that reason, it is easy to demand some sort of government action to stop such.  But, frankly, the government has no business stopping such.  The President of the United States correctly pointed out, albeit in an awkward circumstance, the correctness that government has no business determining which religious group could build a worship center wherever.  That is the heart of our freedoms, the freedom of religion and the freedom of people to have their faith.  

The Muslims who wish to construct the mosque make clear that they do not condone the terrorist acts of Islamic extremists.  They contend that they wish to build their mosque as a place where moderate and sensible Muslims can worship in defiance of those who kill on a whim.  That contention does help.  

But, there is the reality that is striking.  Islam is the only religion that has members who kill those who do not agree.  It is hard to get past that.  Such is the ultimate test of American ideals.  While we believe in freedom of religion, how far does that freedom extend when the widow of a victim says no? 

For me, I go back to the constitutional freedom of religion.  It is something that makes America what it is.  Here, we believe in freedom.  And, freedom is a thing that applies to all that are law abiding.  If we stray from that and ban this or that religion from building a place or worship, we lose who we are.  We become like them.  In other words, the terrorists win, they make us like them. 

Further, where do we stop?  Suppose some Christian church is against interracial marriage, do we ban them from building?  On the other side , suppose a church condones gay marriage, since the polls are against that, should we stop them from building a place to worship?  The list goes on.

Therefore, if a group of law abiding Muslims with no terrorist ties want to build a place of worship in New York, let them. It is wrongheaded and it is insulting.  Those Muslims have not thought things out. But, they have the freedom, like Reagan said, "to be stupid."   That is the what we do in America.  We are strong enough to let that happen.  We cannot allow ourselves to become a people so bitter and afraid that we allow a couple of dozen crazy morons from nine years ago to decide who we allow civil rights to.  America is better than that.  

Newt Gingrich, a man I much admire, takes a different take.  Gingrich says we should allow the building of a mosque near the Trade Center site when Saudi Arabia allows churches.  That sounds good.  But, it misses one really big point.  Saudi Arabia is not America.  Let them be religious bigots and live in fear of Christians or Jews.  We are the United States of America, we have the strength to believe in freedom for people of all faiths.  If they pay their dues, let them build a place of worship.  The United States of America is still the last best hope for the world in that we do not fear such.  We embrace such.  We should never live one moment in fear of the debate of ideas or religions.  We are Americans, and no terrorist should take that from us.

For college football fans: VUI's top college football coaches of all time

We at VUI pride ourselves on writing not only about politics and humor, but Southern life.  One of the biggest parts of Southern life is college football.  College football coaches are more popular than Governors and Senators.  So, we offer our Top 9 coaches of all time.  Feel free to comment and set us straight. 

9)Bobby Dodd.  Dodd coached Georgia Tech back in the 1950s and 1960s.  His team won two national and SEC conference championships as Dodd won 165 games as coach.  In addition to his wins on the field, Dodd was a humanitarian committed to his athletes off the field and the disabled.  The stadium at Georgia Tech is named after him. Dodd was a giant in his time on and off the field and made Tech a national team.

8) Lou Holtz.  Holtz restored Notre Dame to glory with a national championship in 1988, but his ability to make winners out of losers is what he is remembered for.  Holtz coached William and Mary, North Carolina State, Arkansas, Minnesota, Notre Dame and South Carolina to bowl games.  No other coach in college football has done such.  

7) John Heisman.  The wins and losses of Heisman's coaching career around the South and other areas is not all that impressive.  What is impressive is how Heisman's ideas about the game of football set the foundation for the game as we know it.  Thus, the Heisman Trophy. 

6) Knute Rockne.  Rockne was the coach who made Notre Dame a place of legends.  His offense with its four horsemen changed the game.  Rockne's willingness for Notre Dame to take on the toughest of opponents made Notre Dame a household name.  Rockne's Irish made people want to pay to see the college game.  His tragic death in a plane crash added to his legend. "Win one for the Gipper" and "Shake down the thunder," two quotes that symbolize Notre Dame football were Rockne's.

5) Bobby Bowden.  Bowden was the awe shucks guy of our time.  Rising from a little Alabama college, he formed West Virginia into a legitimate team and Florida State into a national power.  Bowden won 380 plus games, dominated the ACC, won two national championships and in his heyday was the riverboat gambler with the trick play that would leave some higher ranked opponent scratching their heads. 

4) Tom Osborne.  Osborne did not win as many games as Bowden, but his Nebraska teams dominated the 1980s and 1990s with teams that won championships and big games.  Osborne did so without any hint of scandal.  Osborne went on to serve in the US Congress, and then returned to Nebraska as AD to salvage the name of Nebraska.  Few in college football have their mere names mean so much. 

3) Paul "Bear" Bryant.  Is there any name in Southern football that means as much as Bear Bryant?  The things he accomplished at Maryland, Kentucky and Texas A&M were incredible.  But, it was at his alma mater, Alabama, where the Bear became a legend.  Numerous national championships and big game wins were the norm under him.  The Bear was also a decent man, who perhaps stayed on a year or two too long, because he was worried about the people who worked for him.  The Bear's last game was a victory against Illinois in the 1982 Liberty Bowl.  He went out the all time coaching win leader in Division I football.  The Bear died a few weeks later.  His name is still mentioned with reverence among Alabama faithful and Southern football fans. 

2) Eddie Robinson.  Robinson coached at then Division 1-AA Grambling State University in Louisiana, (now FCS division.)  Do not let that fool you.  Robinson was a great coach.  Robinson's Grambling teams included some football greats and under him they won over 400 games.  What is amazing about the winning ways of Eddie Robinson were the circumstances.  Robinson took over the program in the heart of segregation and racism.  Grambling for years got little support from the state.  Yet, Robinson molded champions in men that went on the NFL, to being doctors, lawyers and teachers.  Robinson taught men how to win even when life did not want them to.  

1) Joe Paterno.  Paterno is the only guy on our list still coaching and is at the top of it.  Paterno is a class act and a proven winner.  He is currently has more wins than any other major football college coach in history, which speaks for itself.  But, Paterno has done so while running a clean program and never being a prima donna concerned about the money.  A Ivy League man as a graduate of Brown, Paterno has always stressed the academics.  Further, he has put his money where is mouth is by giving back a good bit of salary over the years to the library and other academic ventures at Penn State. There has never been a little old man with high water britches and coke bottled glasses so feared by other college football teams and coaches as Paterno.  He is what is right with college football and what is so special about college sports in that the little guy you think cannot be taken seriously will work his behind off and beat you.  But, like the Bear, he has the character to worry about the people around him and his players.  

That sums it up...there were some honorable mentions that we will list in no order. We will discuss those of national and local interest.

Woody Hayes- Ohio State's legend.  He was a student of history and men and worked hard.  High blood sugar robbed him of his legend when he punched a Clemson player.  But, the man was still a great mentor and coach. 

Bo Schembechler-  Bo never won a national championship, but won big for Michigan and was clean as they come in college sports.  He was the ultimate "no BS" guy. 

Vince Dooley- Dooley is a Georgia legend, and deserves it.  What most do not know about Dooley is his intellect.  He even served as an editorial adviser on the Clemson literary magazine. 

Danny Ford_  Yes, Ford's checkered record with the NCAA is some concern, but the man was responsible for the second upper deck at Clemson and had the political knack of connecting with fans that has not been seen at Clemson since.  

Joe Morrison- The ultimate man in black created the image of South Carolina as we know it with 2001 and his teams in 1984, 1987 and 1988 were among the best South Carolina ever had and the teams and the games those teams gave national powers were classics.  

Others that come to mind: Steve Spurrier, Nick Saban, Frank Beamer, George Welsh, Wallace Wade, General Neyland, Mack Brown, Barry Switzer, Paul Johnson, etc.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Is Sheheen going to save Spratt?

VUI had an interesting conversation with an old Democratic political hand recently.  The conversation started about the Governor's race, but turned to the Fifth Congressional District race, where longtime incumbent John Spratt faces stiff competition from Republican Mick Mulvaney.  Though Spratt has held on to the seat for decades, the Fifth has trended Republican in the last few years, including voting for John McCain over President Obama in 2008.  

That fact brought Sheheen into the conversation.  Sheheen is on the the surface, a pretty moderate church going family man.  He is not your typical Democrat.  Further, Sheheen is well respected in Kershaw County, where he is from. Kerhsaw, like the other areas in the Fifth Congressional District, like Newberry, Darlington and Rock Hill are relatively rural swing voting areas.  People in the Fifth are relatively poor and rural compared to other districts in the state.  They are hurting economically.  Sure, some might say that places like Rock Hill and Fort Mill are Charlotte suburbs, but historically, the votes swing. 

The argument presented to VUI goes as follows.  Sheheen, a son of that region, makes people comfortable with voting for a Democrat for Governor.  Further, his personal appeal in the region will turn out voters who otherwise might stay home.   With someone voters are comfortable with at the head of the Democratic ticket, it becomes harder for Mulvaney and the Republicans to tie Spratt to Obama and Pelosi.  Watch the coming campaign and remember VUI told you first, Sheheen and Spratt are going to talk a lot about being South Carolina Democrats and they are going to talk more about Mark Sanford then President Obama.  

Will such save Spratt or even elect Sheheen as Governor?  Who knows.  We will learn that on Election Day.  There are some matters that are pretty clear.  The Democrats are running like scalded dogs from Alvin Greene, their US Senate nominee.  Second, the Democrats seem more inclined to use Vincent Sheheen to save John Spratt then to work to elect Sheheen.  While we normally don't  give the Democrats advice, we offer this tidbit for them. Forget Spratt.  Sheheen is the future of the Democratic Party if there is to be a future for it.  Sheheen has the brains and the personality to win and go beyond that.  But, if the Democrats see him as the man to save Spratt, it will all be wasted.  Again, VUI just calls it like we see it.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Race and thinking

Frankly, VUI is sick and tired or racial issues in today's politics.  The issue of race is everywhere, whether you want it to be or not.  

It is found in both parties.  Neither wants to admit it, but it is there.  The Democrats run ads on African American radio stations talking about the Republicans bringing back "chains" and the like.  The Republicans peddle even softer racism in their campaign rhetoric.  

Whatever the source, it is sickening to VUI.  VUI remains a conservative website, with conservative ideas to tout, but racism is not our deal.  Indeed, as true conservatives, we believe that racism is waste of energy and resources.  We believe the promise of freedom and limited government is for everyone.  We call black men friends and brothers.  We live what we write.

But, we are smart enough to know that not everyone wants the promise of freedom and limited government to be for all.  There are elements, especially in the upstate, that just downright hate hispanics and blacks.  While true conservatives look for ways to get government out of the way, the haters look to use government to get in the way of those who they hate. They even want to change our constitution because they are afraid of hispanic babies being born as citizens.

It is both ironic and frustrating to a true conservative.  Think on it.  The policies of President Obama are something any true conservative would oppose, but a true conservative would also oppose the flat ignorance of those who hate having a black President.  The bull manure about the President not really being the President is an example. 

It is a damn mess that has left the GOP divided.  Republicans, like VUI, with a brain, like Newt Gingrich.  Gingrich thinks out his statements and is respectful of the President of the United States.  If you got a conservative brain, Gingrich is the type of guy you would back.  Gingrich has the ideas but also the respect that true conservatives have for someone elected by the people to the office of President of the United States.  

But, we do not live in a Gingrich world.  We live in a Palin world. Sarah Palin does not have respect for her local postmaster, but she gets popular acclaim.  She is dumb as a rock in so many ways, but she is white and hot.  So, Republicans love her, even if it means suicide at the polls.

That goes back to race.  Bobby Jindal is running Louisiana in crisis.  But, his skin is a little bit dark and he has that problem of thinking like Newt.  So, the GOP just seems inept. 

But, the GOP has one ace in the hole, named Nikki Haley.  If that that dark skinned woman gets elected Governor of SC, watch out.  Black children in Allendale will be left out, but Haley will become a star.  Wait and see.  Afterall, she is not black, she is Indian.  Her religion over the years is the only thing that might get Bubba to ask, "what the $%&?"

But, Haley does not have to worry about all that, she is a Republican.  Republicans can be white, black or biracial.  That is just how things are.  VUI thinks it is a good thing.  We love to see people of various racial backgrounds seek their  party out of their own conscious.  That is how we roll. 

But, so many do not roll that way.  From little league sports to big time politics, far too many South Carolinians are geared in race. They see race and hate at every move.  Far too often they are right.  Let's just be frank here.  Far too many state and local politicians act to keep people of color out of things.  That is the hard cold truth.  Their discrimination is not conservative.  Indeed, hit hampers the ideals of freedom of true conservatism.  Racists cloak themselves in conservatism while holding the big government notion of keeping certain people "in their places." 

The problem is that way of thinking just does not work anymore in this world.  We need the best and brightest competing, regardless of their race or whatever.  That is life today.  Whether you run a youth sports team or a major business, discrimination is the one thing what will shut you down and leave you a loser.  That is how the real world of today rolls.  Thank God. 

VUI will later address why we think it is not a bad thing that someone can be born an American.  That dadgummed constitution just appeals to us.

Tax increases will not lead to economic development, but Obama still wants you and your money

Somewhere along the way in the past few decades, politics and economic policy got confused.  Democrats somehow have been led to believe that to eschew smart economic and tax policy is somehow the key to social enlightenment.  Republicans think the same in reverse.  They want to see the Democrats wreck the economy so they can win office.

Think on it people.  The smart thing to do in regards to the tax cuts about to expire at the end of this year is not only extend them but to target more tax cuts to stimulate the economy.  Unless Congress and the President act, taxes will go up on January 1st for each and every American, including those who invest.  Playing politics with such is dangerous to the country and flat stupid. 

Liberals, in their desire for so called social justice have tied their beliefs in things like gay rights and abortion to tax policy.  Such is done is stark ignorance.  But, it causes Democrats to believe the fallacy that we can tax our way to economic prosperity and balanced budgets.  Frankly put, that can not and will not happen.  Hoover, a Republican, tried that course in the late 1920s, to disaster.  

The only way to balance the federal budget is through economic growth.  The only way at this time to grow the economy is to cut taxes.  Forget the social issues and the hot button issues that make people lockstep in their agendas.  People have to have money in their pockets to spend and invest in the free market.  

Let's start with capital gains tax, the taxes people pay for daring to invest or for inheriting something like their parents home and then selling it.  Nothing punishes entrepreneurial spirit like the capital gains tax. Letting such a tax dramatically increase is bad enough. But, what ought to be done is an elimination of it.  People should be rewarded  with no tax burden for investing in American business at this time.  Giving people that incentive will work to create businesses, jobs and a way out of this economic mess we are in.  

But, alas, it seems we are not to have that.  The Democrats have illogically tied their social agenda to tax policy and seem ignorant of the consequences.  The Republicans, with no real leadership, seem to just list and be happy to see the Democrats fail.  Fair enough.  

But, someone needs to tell the truth about things.  So, we will try to.  Throughout the world, the long history of capitalism has proven one thing:  a government can not cut its spending and increase its taxes and hope for economic prosperity.  The numbers are there.  They are telling.  Forget the social agendas.  Look at reality.  Taxes have to not only be kept at current levels, but the capital gains tax must be eliminated.  We compete in the world market now.  That is how people who are serious about competing reward investment.  That is how success is done in this world.  

Of course, there is another tract.  The President of the United States and Democrats in Congress can allow a huge tax increase on all Americans, including those who invest in business, and then sit and watch the American economy go the way of Brazil.  Again, deciding to not do such is not a repudiation of the social agenda of the Democratic party, it instead would be something to enable it to go forward.  All the ideas that Obama and his like have in mind can not come to pass without revenue, and the way to big revenue is economic development paid for by tax decreases, not increases.  

Reagan knew that. Both Roosevelts knew it.   John F. Kennedy knew that.  But, odds are Barack Obama and the people around him probably don't have an idea of what in the Hell we are talking about.  They are going to thump their chest at letting the "George W. Bush" tax cuts expire.  So be it.  But, their partisanship clouds their judgment about what ought to be done.  So much for smart people running things.  We seem to have political hacks who could not even pass Econ 101.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

RIP Ted Stevens

Former President Pro Tempore of the United States Senate and longtime Senator from Alaska, Ted Stevens was killed recently, along with four others, in a plane crash.  Among the survivors of the plane crash are former NASA head Sean O'Keefe and O'keefe's son.  

According to published reports, the party on the plane were flying to a fishing camp when something went tragically wrong.  Such trips are typical this time of year in Alaska.  Various published reports have included information about hard the rescue of the survivors was.  

Ted Stevens was Alaska's and the Republican Party's longest serving Senator.  South Carolina's Strom Thurmond served longer than Stevens, but not as a Republican.  

Stevens was touted as "Mr. Alaska," but was not without controversy.  Stevens was convicted of ethics charges and afterward lost a close election to self professed conservative Democrat Mark Begich, then the Mayor of Anchorage in November of 2008, bringing a close to forty years of service in the United States Senate by Mr. Stevens.  In 2009, Stevens's conviction was set aside.

Despite that loss, Stevens remained a popular figure in Alaska. Though in his mid eighties, Stevens remained active and engaged.  Indeed there is something to be said for dying in an Alaskan plane crash at age 86 on an outdoor adventure.  

That said, there are other ironies that abound in this story that are unique to Alaska.  Senator Begich, among the first to praise the service of Stevens upon the news of his death, lost his own father, a member of Congress, to a plane crash in Alaska some years ago.  Further, Stevens survived a plane crash decades ago in Alaska that killed his wife.  

That is the harsh nature of our 50th state.  It's unforgiving nature is as notable as its natural resources and beauty.  Thus, Alaska delivered an ironic, yet fitting end to the life of the man who perhaps served it longer and better than any other.  May God be with the Stevens family and the families of the other victims of the crash.

Charlie Rangel melts down

We at VUI have always had some admiration for Charlie Rangel, a Democratic member of the US House from New York.  While we rarely agree with Congressman Rangel, he has always been an interesting character in a political world filled with consultant managed blowhards.  

That is one reason VUI was disappointed when Charlie Rangel got caught up in a real estate based ethics scandal.  We had hoped he was an honest liberal.  

But, Charlie Rangel did not disappoint us on entertainment recently.  While the consultant ran politicos would be quick to fall on their swords for the President and the Democratic Leadership, Rangel took the House floor to go on a defiant rant.  Watch the video below.  Wow.  The guy has audacity in his old age, if not ethics. 

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Top 9 reasons Voting under the Influence will continue to operate

9) The taxpayers are generous enough to give internet access to prison inmates. 

8) If Jakie Knotts and Bobby Harrell wish you were dead, you gotta be doing something right. 

7) It brings the Sanford family together.  Both Jenny and Mark hate our guts. 

6) Admit it men, your sex lives are better after your wives read this website. 

5) Death threats and likewise insults make our day. 

4) RINO to us means "really irritating numbnuts online."

3) Somebody has to have the guts to ask if Nikki Haley knows the Kuma Sutra. 

2) Heavy consumption of 100 proof bourbon has to go to some good use. 

1) We have shades and we are on a mission from God. Deal with it.

Haley is not "one of us."

Nikki Haley raced to the Republican nomination for Governor as a candidate who was one of the people.  For whatever reason, Haley was seen as the candidate who was one of us, striving to do good. However, as the glare of the Fall campaign starts to shine upon Haley, it looks like she is not one of us.  

First, there are the late tax payments.  Frankly, that does not bother VUI.  Small business people pay their taxes late and make arrangements with the IRS and the South Carolina Department of Revenue.  Such is to many the course of business.  So, revelations about accountant Haley not paying taxes on time was ho hum at best.  

But, then there were other issues that just stand out and make clear Nikki Haley is not "one of us," she is "one of them."  Take for example the fact that her family income in one recent year was only $40,000.  There is nothing wrong with that.  South Carolina families make do on less.  But, what is striking about Haley is that with that limited income, she was able to finance a $300,000 mortgage and a $100,000 line of credit.  

Think about that, people.  In a time when people who have never missed a payment in their lives are denied refinance mortgages because their home value has went down or their income to debt ratio is too high, Haley and her family were able to go in debt ten times the amount of their income.  Try doing that without holding political office and power and see how well you do.  

Of course, political power does have its perks.  One of them is making money. Haley did dramatically increase her family income by working as a "consultant" for an engineering firm that does business with the state of South Carolina.  How many people who show up at tea party gatherings and the like are able to "consult" on such a level? 

 It is something to think about. Nikki Haley has campaigned on being of the people, but her personal finances show she is not of the people at all.  Forget the taxes.  Just look at the loans approved and the consulting fees, and ask yourself if you or your family could have it so well?  Indeed it appears that Nikki Haley turned her service in the SC House into a cash cow.  Haley is not "one of us."  

Haley has taken advantage of her position for personal gain, a trait that goes against conservative ideals.  Further, her big loans and consulting fees are far removed from the average guy who wants government limited, but struggles to pay the power bill.  That guy scrambles to keep the lights on and food on the table while Haley uses her position, paid for by that guy's tax dollars, to get sweetheart loans and big consulting fees.  

Nope, Haley is not one of us.  She's one of them.  She preaches against big government while using government to feather her own nest.  One can only imagine what will be for sale come next January. 

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

What it was was football

Football season is upon us.  Practice has started for most teams.  Couple football with a little needed down time, and the next week or so is going to be slow at VUI.  But, we do want to offer you this classic about the great game.  Politics comes back full forced soon enough.