Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Brannon, Tillis and Rouzer -- Can the Tea Party Ever Get Beyond the Mid-Terms in North Carolina?


 By Verne Strickland   Nov. 11, 2014

The bitterness and rancor that typified the U.S. Senate and NC District Seven Congressional races seemed to know no bounds. Now that the election is thankfully over, the bad feelings should have been laid to rest. This is not conservative ideology at work -- Tea Party vs. Traditional GOP -- it is deep personal animus bordering on hate. Too bad.

I feel compelled to pass along a statement I find particularly unfortunate, vile and shameful. It was written to me by a Tea Party supporter who, like a number of others, had gotten carried away by the thrill of the battle, and the thirst for partisan blood.

  • Tea Party Girl (TPG) She will go unnamed for obvious reasons

    "I'll be holding my nose to vote for Tillis & Rouzer who are both incredibly shitty candidates, and beyond that nothing. I can't vouch for them, I won't attach my name and my integrity to them, they haven't earned it and they don't deserve it. For almost anything we can say about Hagan, Tillis has done something just as corrupt and destructive. Best I can do is not criticize Tillis directly. We can thank the lying, divisive & destructive Harris camp to thank for giving us another lesser-of-two-evils choice this election, just when we need to be all-in. It's really sickening, but that's where we are. We need fighters and we have the same old spineless politicians."

  • Verne Strickland

    I just saw this, TPG.  Hate to know that you actually wrote it, and I vehemently deny the hateful comments you wrote about Thom and David. Your insulting statement -- "I'll be holding my nose to vote for Tillis and Rouzer, who are both incredible shitty candidates" -- sounds like habitual barnyard prattle. Then you follow this is up by saying, "Best I can do is not criticize Tillis directly." It's clear enough that you have already criticized Tillis directly -- complete with potty-mouth barnyard profanity.
  • Tuesday, February 4, 2014 Verne Strickland usadotcom

    U.S. Senate candidate Greg Brannon faces fraud allegations in civil lawsuit

    How could this be? How could this possibly be? Yet here it is -- a missile through the side of a U.S. Senate candidate in the race to succeed Senator Kay Hagan.

    You must see for yourself. This is not a take-down for candidate Dr. Greg Brannon. It is a positive statement -- a vote for NC House Speaker Thom Tillis. Read it for yourself. Judge for yourself.

    This is spring plowing, and planting time for a new crop of contenders. This is a warning shot across the bow of the U.S.S. Greg Brannon. There will doubtless be return fire from the guns of the Brannon on her maiden voyage in search of the prize.

    And there will be thunderous salvos from the proud U.S.S. Thom Tillis. This one is for all the marbles. May the better man win. This skirmish even before the onset of the full battle will make some grown men cry and others ravenous for blood.

    But there is blood flowing already -- from the negative positioning mounted by Brannon. And the withering fire from the media, setting the record straight as Dr. Brannon's past, and his tactics, return to haunt him even at this early stage of the game. 

    This will be a fight for the soul of the Republican Party of North Carolina -- with implications for the national stage in 2014

    Don't leave your seats. This is going to be good.


    Republican Senate Candidate’s Positions, Posts Plagiarized From Several Sources

    A Facebook post of Dr. Greg Brannon’s seems to be a near-direct copy of an article by a Cato Institute scholar. posted on April 16, 2014, at 7:13 p.m.
    Brannon (left) with Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah. Via Facebook: DrGregBrannon
    Dr. Greg Brannon, a Republican who is vying for the party’s Senate nomination in North Carolina appears to have plagiarized several of his campaign “on the issues” pages from Republican Michigan Rep. Justin Amash. A Facebook post of Brannon’s also seems to be a near-direct copy of an article by a Cato Institute scholar. Another issues post appears to be copied from the Coalition for Jobs.
    Brannon, a former Tea Party activist, has a history of making controversial statements. Brannon called U.S. property taxes “American central planning,” and referenced the Holocaust and Soviet Union as other examples of central planning. He also once alleged that the United Nations is a scam to control life and ran a now-defunct organization called “Founder’s Truth” that posted conspiracy theories like claims that there is fluoridate in the water and that the Boston bombing was a false flag.
    His website then mysteriously disappeared from the Web Archive.

  •   Verne Strickland: I was called "vicious" and other names by some particularly raucous Tea Party faithful like TPG. I took it in stride. We should see here that Dr. Brannon was no angel, and got some harsh press because of the way he conducted his personal affairs.

    This was a hard-fought political campaign -- one of many I have participated in -- each time on the side of honest Christian conservative GOP candidates.

    In this one, I found Dr. Brannon to be naive in the extreme, and easy to pin down with descriptions of his tactics. Instead of being a tough tiger, he came across as a docile puppy who had brought no plausible offense, and no discernible defense. His protectors, meanwhile, seemed to coddle him because he seemed gentle and innocent.

     Some loved him here. Many  didn't. I daresay no one would have loved him in Washington. 

    Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2014/02/03/4661605/senate-candidate-greg-brannon.html#.UvGBbc77fWV#storylink=cpy

    Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2014/02/03/4661605/senate-candidate-greg-brannon.html#.UvGBbc77fWV#storylink=cpyBy John Frank and Jim Morrill

Sunday, November 9, 2014

How Reagan, Not Fate, Brought Down the Berlin Wall . . .


How Reagan, Not Fate, Brought Down the Berlin Wall 

via Verne Strickland usadotcom 11/09/14

 On the 25th Anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall, it’s easy to see the collapse of the Soviet Bloc as something that was inevitable. That’s essentially the way the event is being taught today at universities and colleges around the country. 

But it’s important for us all to recall that the collapse of the Soviet Bloc and that concrete edifice, the Wall, was not inevitable. It was the result of choices and decisions that were made by statesmen in the West, in particular President Ronald Reagan.

American foreign policy toward the Soviet Union during the Cold War had essentially been a policy of containment: hem the Kremlin in and try to stem its advance. To Ronald Reagan, this approach made no strategic sense.
He likened it to a football coach adopting a policy of punting on first down whenever his team got the ball. It was a completely defensive strategy. And just like that approach would doom you to defeat in football, it was likely to do the same in geopolitics.

Reagan came into office with a view of going on the offense. A look at his now declassified National Decision Directives (NSDDs) reveals how the approach was different. NSDD-75, for example, shaped his policy toward the Soviet Union. NSDD-32 was the grand strategy. And NSDD-66 was his strategy for waging economic war on the Soviet bloc.

The fact that Reagan’s policy was unique, fresh, and went on the offensive is not something you need to take my word for.  Just listen to what the Soviets were thinking.

“Two features of Reagan’s policy toward the Soviet Union upset them [the Soviet leadership] most,” recalled Soviet Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Dobrynin. “One was his apparent determination to regain military superiority; the other, his determination to launch an ideological offensive against the Soviet Union, and foment trouble inside the country and among Soviet allies.”

The arms buildup created an enormous strain on the Soviets, who felt the need to try to keep up. KGB General Sergei Kondrashey, recalls that the Kremlin was frightened of the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), or “Star Wars.” SDI “influenced the situation in the country to such an extent that it made the necessity of seeking an understanding with the West very acute.”

Longtime Soviet Foreign minister Gromyko (nick-named “Grim Grom because of his stern demeanor) sat down in 1984 with former Senator George McGovern to discuss the sorry state of U.S.-Soviet relations. Grim Grom told McGovern that Reagan and his advisers “want to cause trouble… They want to weaken the Soviet system. They want to bring it down.”

 Days later, Gromyko visited the White House and chatted with Reagan. After denouncing the American defense buildup Gromyko told Reagan, “Behind all this lies the clear calculation that the USSR will exhaust its material resources before the USA and therefore be forced to surrender.” Indeed.

We are accustomed to seeing the horrific acts of history as the handiwork of evil individuals. The Second World War will forever be seen as a consequence of Hitler. The tens of millions who died in the Cultural Revolution in China died at the hands of Mao and his followers. The war between Radical Islam and the West will forever be directly tied to the actions of Osama Bin Laden.

But likewise, great victories need to be judged in the same manner. You cannot separate the victory over the Nazis from the heroism and wisdom of Winston Churchill. The preservation of the Union during the American Civil War was a direct consequence of Lincoln’s Leadership.
Likewise, the Berlin Wall did not randomly topple over. The hand of Reagan is visible.