Don't Reinvent the Wheel

The military has a very effective teaching/training philosophy that has served it well for many years. It consists of three simple steps:

1. Tell them what you are going to tell them.
2. Tell them.
3. Tell them what you told them.

I have used this method for thirty-four years as a flight instructor and it works. So, as the old saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

I am going to use this military training philosophy to demonstrate how we can take back our country from the extreme left wing socialists in our government, change the course of history, what we can do to best ensure success and to teach you how to accomplish the mission..

First, and most importantly, there is no need to “reinvent the wheel.” It is much more expedient to use an existing "wheel" in better ways. Our existing wheel is the Republican Party.

The election of Barack Hussein Obama was reaction by a frustrated electorate that was fed up with “politics as usual” in Washington, DC and that was misled by promises of “change” from a candidate who was the sweetheart of the mass media, faced a weak opponent and activated masses of people using an organization (ACORN) funded with huge amounts of tax dollars that has an agenda of its own.

You may not agree with my reasoning and have your own beliefs as to why Mr. Obama was elected but the fact remains this country elected the most far left President in U.S. history. Obama has, in his first year in office, spent more money than the Bush Administration spent in their entire eight years. This is money we don't have and is being borrowed from China, Saudi Arabia and some of our other "friends" around the globe. Obama, with the help of Senator Harry Reid and Speaker Nancy Pelosi, has pushed the United States onto a fast track of socialism, big government and bankruptcy.

Spend a little time each day reading such items as Rasmussen Reports Daily Presidential Tracking Polls and the Rasmussen Reports. It doesn't take but a minute to pull the information up on your screen. I would also encourage you to subscribe to the daily email sent to you free of charge.

There are a number of polls being taken at any given time, however many of them are so slanted the information they contain is worthless. Rasmussen Report seems to be one of the more objective companies doing this service.

Another company Tarrance Group, conducts polling for specific candidates and companies. I used them several times and found their work to be very good. They have released a report GWU Battleground Poll that offers a great deal of insight to just how the electorate is feeling right now. I would suggest you take a few moments to scan through it. You will notice that they also list the questions that were asked the people interviewed. These questions are critical as a question can be worded to give the pollster the answer they desire. I think you will be pleased with the neutrality of the questions. (When you finish reading the report use your "BACK" button to return to this page.)

People are upset because Obama promised new and better jobs. What did we get? The largest unemployment in decades, but of course that is all George Bush's fault.

Obama promised us a new clear, free and open government with "transparency" being the Holy Grail. What do we have? Secret meetings, millions of dollars going to questionable countries, C-SPAN barred from so-called public meetings. Somehow all that is George Bush's fault too.

Obama promised a "new day in government honesty and integrity". What did we get? Chicago mob style politics and a Cabinet filled with people who have committed crimes and felonies that would land the average citizen in jail. Yep, somehow ole George Bush caused all that to happen too.

And in his 2010 State of the Union address to the Congress he made it abundantly clear he has no intention of listening to the American people because he has too much work to do cleaning up the eight years of George Bush.

As one of my American friends who moved here legally from Mexico says, "Obama es lleno de aire caliente! Él presume mucho y es arrogante."

This President, his Cabinet, and his “blind following the blind” leadership in the House and Senate all need to go!

All those in favor, please continue reading.

What tools are available to millions of Americans capable of creating the change we desperately need to take back our country?

The best one is the same system that put the Obama crowd in place – the voting booth.

Only this time hard-working, wage-earning, God-fearing, genuinely patriotic Americans will be pulling the strings versus selfish, agenda-focused groups and overseas interests.

How do we make this happen? It is not as difficult as you might think. A giant cathedral is a thing of beauty to behold, but it didn't just popup out of the ground. It was built carefully one stone at a time.

What we are about to discuss is not theory. It is totally field-tested and has been used successfully in the past. Just like the Cathedral's blueprints I am going to share with you a blueprint that will lead to success.

To start, forget all the labels – Democrat, Republican, Independent or Tea Bagger – as each contains its own set of land mines. We are looking for ideas and people that will fight for them, not a label.

History tells us that third party candidates rarely win, at least at the national level. Although there have been some good third party candidates over the years their major accomplishment has been to siphon votes away from one of the “mainline” candidates and allow the wrong “mainliner” to be elected.

A winning campaign is comprised of three vital elements:

1. A good candidate
2. A solid organization
3. Adequate funding

A good candidate is a person with the fire in his/her belly to win. His/her 100% honest reason for running is to create fundamental change in support of good government and NO OTHER REASON! Allow me to say that again; His/her 100% honest reason for running is to create fundamental change in support of good government and NO OTHER REASON! Wannabe, resume builders, professional politicians need not apply.

The person needs to be personable, have an ability to speak on his/her feet under pressure but stay cool, possess a firm grip on the issues of the day, a family that is completely supportive and no skeletons in the closet.

Former Speaker of the House Tip O’Neal once made the observation that, “All politics are local.” Truer words were never spoken and the candidate of choice must know and understand the people in his/her area and be able to speak their language. Communicating and identifying with the electorate is critical.

A good campaign organization to pull it all together is the working backbone of any campaign. Everything from fund raising, strategy planning and execution, registering voters, turning voters out on election day and keeping an eye on the voting booths are all part of the job description.

However, a good or even fair organization gone bad is where most campaigns fall into disarray and the election goes south. Thus putting campaign staff together is a task that requires diligence, skill, patience and the ability to ask tough questions and not tolerate poor performance. A campaign only lasts a few months and there is not enough time for "on the job training" of your leadership team. Volunteers need training but the people directing that training must be up to speed from day one.

There are many “campaign experts” out there who will try to sell you their services. A few are very good and a viable organization does need some professional help. A word of caution, you must be very careful who is selected to give that help. Check out potential campaign strategists and staff from A to Z. Examine campaigns they have conducted in the past and determine their modus operandi (MO). Some are killers who go for the throat no matter what. Ethics is a word that does not exist in their vocabulary. Others are afraid to pull out the big guns when they are really needed. Many are more concerned with building a resume for themselves rather then totally representing the interests of the candidate.

Pick these people very, very carefully and sparingly. A candidate does not need a stable full of “experts” burning through all the money.

What is described above are pretty standard campaign tactics. All candidates will be going through this process in some form or another. If not done well, you will read about them in the morning papers as they fall out of the races.

Let’s pretend for a moment you are the candidate and you have now completed your personal campaign organization – the folks you will be working with night and day and elbow-to-elbow until the victory party election night. This is the group with whom you have complete contact and control 24/7. They will spend more time with you than your spouse. This has to be a group of totally trustworthy people that are not afraid to tell you "no" if they honestly feel you are wandering off the path. They will know your every secret, what you like to eat, your bathroom habits, when you need a nap, who you talk to on the telephone, a closeness that ninety nine out of a hundred people will never experience, and quite frankly would never be able to tolerate. It takes massive adjustment.

One member of this tight knit little group must be someone to protect your back 24/7. In my case it was my wife.

This tight knit group is many times referred to as the "Kitchen Cabinet" as they are the ones that hold the tough discussions, air out the dirty laundry, tell the candidate his/her idea on subject X is nuts and off the wall. No "yes" men need apply.

The next layer of organization, your campaign staff management team, is also critical to winning or losing. A candidate must have complete input, feedback and control. It is also the most difficult group to manage.

Earlier I said to forget the labels – Democrat, Republican, Independent or Tea Bagger. However, now is the time to use the people those labels represent to help you win the election.

If you have a sense of discomfort being associated with one of those labels, never fear, there are millions more just like you. This is where the so-called Tea Baggers came from, good people with common beliefs, goals and ideology that just does not seem to fit the current "labels". By the time we are finished, whatever label you choose will be molded into the same frame of thoughts and ideals you possess. This is where we start the process of identifying people with labels that can be turned and those without labels that need to have some "identify"' to hold

Remember the old line, “If you can’t change them, join them?” We will be doing a reverse procedure by, “first joining them and then changing them.”

At this point in the process, as a good candidate you also need a big statewide organization to help get you elected. This organization will help raise money and use its influence on other state organizations. Adequate funding is imperative to a successful campaign.

There is neither the time nor money to build such a group from scratch. In fact, this one point is the primary reason most third party candidates come up short on Election Day. However, if you look around both the Republican and Democrat parties, they have organization, structure and money.

Don’t try to reinvent the wheel, take one of these existing “wheels” and customize it to a better way of thinking.

On the surface at least, it appears the Republican Party is more closely aligned with small government, lower taxes, pro-life and a climate that is friendly to self-improvement and responsibility.

Like any organization that has been around for a number of years the Republican hierarchy has become hidebound, a “good old boy” system and not responsive to the people they are supposed to represent. The party has shied away from the principles and ideals that made them Republicans in the first place.

Remember former President Ronald Reagan's quote,"I didn't leave the Democrat Party, the Party left me."

In President Reagan's day there was another party to turn to, the Republicans. We do not have that luxury today. The Republican hierarchy has moved the Party to the left and through its "big tent" theory has watered down the basic principles of smaller government, lower taxes, personal responsibility, a robust private sector that provides a higher standard of living while not bankrupting small businesses with ridiculous taxes to pay for all the "wonderful government programs we just can't live without." There are too many times today that to differentiate a Democrat from a Republican can be a difficult process.

From my vantage point, it appears the Republican Party is ripe for an overhaul from bottom to top and who can do it any better than you? Who will do it if you don’t? Is the future of the country worth your time and effort to move this “revolution” forward?

If your answer is, “Yes!” Then here is a battle plan to accomplish the mission:

Find out immediately when and where your next “local” meeting of the Republican Party is going to be held. Gather the names of all the “local” officers in the Party and determine where their sympathies lie (pro-life, tax cutter, big spender, etc.).

Talk to as many people as you can who share your points of view. Determine from that group who has the backbone to take head-on the “good old boys” and who will be better as supporting soldiers.

Attend the very next caucus/neighborhood meeting. Go in force with your friends and be ready for one or two or however many it may take of them to be candidates for the offices in your local Republican Party group. Use the Republican’s own voting system against them to elect people that favor your points of view.

Think this can’t be done? It is actually easy to do. Let me give you a real life example of how this worked in a congressional race in a Midwestern state:

The congressional district was demographically in favor of the Democrat Party. In fact, the Congressman from that district was a very liberal, far left ideologue.

The Republicans had not been able to defeat him in years and had pretty much given up on the project. The local and county caucuses were dominated by a group of hidebound, long in the tooth men and women who were used to getting their way – old guard Republicans.

A strong candidate emerged in the form of an Independent, an “outsider” who just happened to speak the language of the majority of the people in the district (By this I don’t mean English, Spanish or any other language but rather this candidate was one of them, worked for a living, etc. In fact, the campaign eventually ran on a theme of “one of us.”). This candidate had no money, no personal wealth to draw from and no support from the big buck contributors within the Republican Party. In fact, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) and the state Republican Party worked against this candidate in an effort to assure the seating of a long time party hack and contributor because – as they put it – “he deserved the seat.” Wrong.

At the first local caucus meeting in the candidate’s hometown the folks did exactly what was just described to you. The meeting was attended by a large group of the candidate’s supporters and during the meeting they were able to elect the candidate’s supporters to all of the neighborhood party offices and turn the old herd out to pasture.

As one of the old timers was heard to say, “I hear a train coming.” And it did.

The next step was to repeat the takeover activity at the county and then the district level. In hindsight the battle should have been taken to the state party as well because in the years that followed the state party lived up to its reputation of “eating their own young.” But that is another story for another time.

Money is the fuel that runs the campaign. It pays the rent on office space, hires help, buys space in the local newspaper, posters, banners, bumper stickers, ads on the radio and the most expensive item of all , TV advertising.

With no big financial backers the campaign took to the streets, small town cafes, dirt roads, sale barns, service club meetings, hot dog roasts, auctions and even a "no bake, bake sale". This was also during a very trying and difficult time in that part of the country's economy. Banks were closing every day and interest rates bumped 20% (1984). In all, the campaign raised a little over $270,000, never borrowed a dime and had only one contribution of $100.00. The donations averaged out to a little over $17.00 per donor!

This feat was accomplished by people that had never participated in the political process, did not know it could not be done and held a strong desire to bring a little common sense back into government.

Grassroots fund raising has its own peculiar effect on race outcomes. "If they buy a ticket they will ride the train." A thousand dollars raised from one hundred people donating ten dollars each will net at least one hundred votes, maybe two hundred if the donors are a couple. A thousand dollars raised from one donor will net one vote, maybe two if they are married. Just do the math.

You have probably figured out by now that I am sharing with you some of the experiences of my first campaign.

As a candidate I went on to win the congressional seat, was gerrymandered into a district that was two to one Democrat over Republican, won those races and retired from Congress on my own after serving the twelve years I promised to serve.

Back to the training and battle plan:

Taking over the Party at the local level is the starting point. Next you must move higher to the county, then the district and finally to the state organization. The same technique as previously described will do the job.

Once those goals have been accomplished you are in control of a political party that has organization, staff, donors, contact lists and a large number of people who may not totally agree with your agenda but where else can they turn to vote? If they want to start a third party, let them. We know the odds are against them.

Remember I mentioned labels and how they can both help and hurt a candidate? Since we have realigned the Republican Party to its traditional roots it is time to be concerned about the word/label “Republican.”

Whenever you mention to someone in a conversation that you are a Republican, Democrat, Catholic, Protestant, Jew, farmer, nurse, car salesman or etc. the person you are speaking to instantly assumes he/she knows what you think and believe based on the label used and the person’s own experience. That image can be positive or negative based on that individual's point of view.

One of the most over used political campaign tactics is to demonize a name and then beat that name to death with negative advertising. This tactic is not limited to just campaigns. For example, the Obama Administration is trying to convince us that they are fighting against the evil banks and doctors. I saw my doctor today and I did not see any red horns or a tail. Guess Obama has not met him.

So, why do we hang so much weight on the Republican, Democrat; liberal and/or conservative names/labels? Because they paint a picture in people’s minds that the deliverer of the message wants to send. Again, this message can be either positive or negative. Conservative is a good word to most of us. However, to a liberal it is the Devil himself!

A lesson to consider: Why use any of these lightning rod labels at all?

What do you think would happen if the electorate learned about a candidate’s values, stands on the issues, approachability, honesty, patriotism and beliefs in God and family before they knew that the candidate was a Democrat or Republican?

In the example given above, this Congressman was re-elected with widening margins in a district that was designed to defeat him. The word Republican never appeared on any campaign literature or in any campaign advertising. I ran simply as “one of us.”

Does it not make good sense for people to become better acquainted with someone before a label is attached? Just stop and think how many times you have been turned off by a person's appearance or someone has told you they were one of those labels you don't like. And, how many times after you became better acquainted with that individual does you opinion take a more positive turn? I hate to sound like an old adage, however "you can never judge a book by its cover".

Not using a label also greatly confuses the opposition. If they can’t hang a tag on you then it becomes very difficult to “paint” you as one of the demons that “must be destroyed.”

Today we have a group of people broadly identified as Tea Baggers. They come from all walks of life, ethnic groups, stratum of the income scale and political persuasions. They have been demeaned by the press and demonized by the left. They are true Americans upset by what they see happening in our country. They are the hope for our future. They are the backbone of the army that will take America back. They have the motivation and energy to fight back. They are looking for solid direction and leadership.

They are truly “one of us.”

In review, we will take our country back from the liberals – some would say Marxists – in our government by working at the local level first to take over the operation of a major political party. Once the local beachhead has been established the campaign is expanded to the county, district and state levels.

Select and encourage good candidates running for the right reason. No political “hangers-on,” no professional politicians, no one who has not lived in the “real world” and they must not be beholden to anyone but the people. Good candidates, such as you must be truly a “one of us” kind of man or woman. Business men and women, professionals, white and blue collar workers that are willing to take a little time off to run for an office, hold it for a few years and then come back to the real world. (Yes, I am a big believer in term limits.)

If you don't feel up to being a candidate, that is fine, get out and find good candidates and then work in the trenches to win the battle. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication from many people to win a major race.

Don’t use labels on your own candidate. Save them for the opponent.

Reshape the Republican Party into a party that is “one of us.”

No one can do this task but you. It is grassroots politics at its finest. It is America at her finest doing what she does best. As Abraham Lincoln closed the Gettysburg Address: “…that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

The battle plan is complete. No wheel was reinvented. The class is dismissed. Now it’s up to you.