Civil Discourse Now

Where the far left and far right overlap for fun and enlightenment

All Blog Posts (1,142)

Marion County GOP Chair: State intervenes to enhance the votes of old, white males

Saturday, March 6: Marion County GOP Precinct Committee people (PCs) caucused to elect a County chair. In a February 26 letter to Marion County PCs, State GOP chair Kyle Hupfer wrote “this is something I usually don’t do.” He said he’d kept mum for 4 years.

He said “I trust our grassroots leaders to make the right decisions for their own community.” And then he says he wants his “letter to be one point of reference as you decide how to vote.” He then says the state party has an…

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Added by Mark Small on March 6, 2021 at 8:30pm — No Comments

Challenge to the candidates for Marion County GOP chair

This morning the Marion County GOP chooses its chair person. This offers an opportunity for a major political party, as defined by Indiana statute, to make inroads, even if only symbolic, on the systemic corruption of our political system. I challenge the 3 candidates to promise:

1) To seek an end to slating fees for candidates who seek nomination for local office. Slating fees are a form of tribute people pay to be considered as a candidate for local office. Few see any return on…

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Added by Mark Small on March 6, 2021 at 8:36am — No Comments

Marion County GOP: don't let the hacks win

Indiana GOP oligarchs couldn’t get the Indiana General Assembly to change a statute so their first pick for Marion County GOP chair could hold that job AND a gov’t daytime job. Their next first pick, Joe Elsener, will be absent for the March 6 caucus to attend a wedding in Nebraska. So Marion County GOP: (1) wants to recruit candidates & get new people in the County GOP; but (2) shoves aside people who challenged their first party hack in favor of a second choice hack.

Marion…

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Added by Mark Small on March 5, 2021 at 3:40pm — No Comments

GOP County chair election: what about the Convention Center?

On Saturday the Marion County (Indianapolis) GOP will elect a new chair person. The County has grown more diverse. As a result its people have adopted views that are more progressive and have tended to cast votes more “blue.”

In 2020 Biden/Harris won Marion County with 63%. Joe Elsener is the candidate preferred by State GOP leaders. To reclaim Marion County elective offices, Mr Elsener said the County GOP has to recruit candidates for office and raise money.

In a letter Mr…

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Added by Mark Small on March 4, 2021 at 8:09pm — No Comments

John Schmitz eked one out

To his credit, John Schmitz (1) said the GOP needs to look more like people in the rest of Marion County (i.e., not all white) and (2) argued it is unfair that the State GOP has given its support to one candidate (not John or Alex Henby).

Alex scored a metaphorical knock-down in the 4th round by saying the slating system should be scrapped. Joe Elsener played it safe, although he talked about “grass roots” so much one would think he’s in lawn care.

Disconcerting was Mr…

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Added by Mark Small on March 3, 2021 at 10:08pm — No Comments

Challenge for GOP candidates tonight

Tonight the three candidates for Marion County GOP Chair participate in a forum as a lead-up to Saturday’s election. The party’s focus has been on who can raise the most money so the GOP here can once more be relevant.

Times - and demographics - change, as should the Marion County GOP. One local matter to address is corruption. The Marion County GOP can gain traction against corruption if it requires any candidate for office in Marion County or Indianapolis to agree she or he will…

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Added by Mark Small on March 3, 2021 at 5:57pm — No Comments

GOP chair candidates' debate tonight: the secret of how to win elections

The Republican Party (GOP) of Marion County (Indianapolis) elects a chairperson March 6, this Saturday. Tonight the three candidates will discuss various topics that seem to circle around a single theme: how to “win.” Here’s the formula to achieve those wins.

1) GET PEOPLE REGISTERED TO VOTE. I did not write “get our people registered to vote.” Everybody, in both major parties, all “third” parties, independents, should have a goal of 100% of eligible voters registered. Why?

In…

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Added by Mark Small on March 3, 2021 at 7:13am — No Comments

Marion County GOP: change it or lose it

Into the 1990s the GOP controlled Indianapolis and Marion County. As Indy’s people became more diverse, political beliefs became more progressive. As a lead-up to Saturday’s caucus to elect a GOP County Chair, a candidates’ forum will take place Wednesday at 7.

The candidates - John Schmitz, Alex Henby and Joe Elsener - will answer questions from topic areas of which they have received advance notice. The topic areas indicate the mindset of party leaders:

“Fundraising,…

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Added by Mark Small on March 2, 2021 at 5:42pm — No Comments

It's exercise of free market, not "cancel culture"

I’m surprised the Republican Party has begun to turn communistic. Quite clever, these red agitators. They have framed the most basic and cherished of liberties - one’s choices in the marketplace - as a limit on “free speech.”

Where and how a person spends money is basic to liberty. Supposed Republicans say that we have to spend money with their pals. They frame anything else as “cancel culture.” Example: if you find the guy with the pillow company offensive, they say you still have to…

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Added by Mark Small on March 2, 2021 at 11:56am — No Comments

GOP County Chair election Saturday: don't let the green party win

One party has run Marion County, Indiana, for decades. On Saturday, March 6, the local GOP will elect a County Chair. Three candidates have announced: John Schmitz, Alex Henby and Joe Elsener. (Michael-Paul Hart dropped out.)

The focus is on who can raise the most money so the Marion County GOP can be in the best position to sell its message. Mr Hart’s numbers indicate that a majority of an annual budget of almost $84K paid “a full-time Executive Director.”

The Marion County…

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Added by Mark Small on March 1, 2021 at 7:24pm — No Comments

CPAC & guns: don't confuse those people with facts

CPAC, the annual gathering of the right wing, is taking place this weekend. In a place full of advocates of the right - damn it, the right - to keep and bear arms, one would expect to see attendees strapped, i.e., carrying firearms.

After all, as I have heard more than a few gun advocates explain to me, gun violence is greater in “gun-free” - as in there are no guns - zones. CPAC, however, once again, has prohibited guns at its annual gathering. Perhaps it’s not their fault. It’s the…

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Added by Mark Small on February 27, 2021 at 5:10pm — No Comments

Prosecutors can't issue subpoenas for people to just come in and "talk."

People get scared if they are “served process” - usually by a civil sheriff’s deputy. And usually the document served is a subpoena: a “court order commanding the appearance of a witness, subject to penalty for noncompliance.” Black’s Law Dict., pocket ed., 1996, p. 601.

This is the Land of the Free where police cannot simply stop a person to question that person. Of course sometimes the police go a few steps further and beat or kill a person, but for an officer of the State even to…

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Added by Mark Small on February 26, 2021 at 3:52pm — No Comments

GOP Marion County chair candidate uses "socialism" as a buzz term

On Saturday March 6, Precinct Committee people (PCs) of the Marion County GOP will caucus to elect a party chair. One candidate, Michael-Paul Hart, called me (I’m a PC) this week. He sent me his “Marion County GOP Plan of Action” (Plan) with a cover letter (letter).

The Plan focuses on organization and money, i.e. branding and sales. Issues at best are implied, e.g.: “democrats are tearing our City apart by shutting down businesses, letting rioters tear down our City, and aiding…

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Added by Mark Small on February 21, 2021 at 10:30am — No Comments

GOP buzz phrases mean people don't have to think

Strategy of this iteration of the GOP relies, in large measure, on buzz words. If voters are conditioned to shut their minds when they hear one or two words, then the GOP does not have to argue claims that lack merit. One such issue is ...

People who would limit our rights to what the Framers of the Constitution intended, in 1787, do not know how abortion was treated at the time the Constitution was written. Justice Blackmun noted that restrictions on abortion are relatively…

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Added by Mark Small on February 19, 2021 at 4:36pm — 1 Comment

States threaten our lives and freedom

Individual States did not coordinate efforts of their respective militias or National guards in December, 1941, to fight in what became called World War II. A year ago the U.S. faced a World conflict with an “enemy” more implacable than in 1941.

If the (now nearly-500,000) deaths from COVID did little to change anyone’s mind about the efficacy of States’ experiments in how we address problems we face, the operation of free market forces in provision of energy in Texas probably won’t…

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Added by Mark Small on February 18, 2021 at 7:29pm — 1 Comment

Limbaugh's dead - unfortunately the dumbing down of America is not

The dumbing down of America coincided with the spread of the audio virus people came to know as Rush Limbaugh. I shall not recount his generally misanthropic philosophy or cite specific instances of his hate-filled rants.

Instead, I want to quote the late Carl Sagan and what he foresaw: “I have a foreboding of an America in my children’s or grandchildren’s time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped…

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Added by Mark Small on February 17, 2021 at 4:36pm — 1 Comment

Ogden's wrong: Const'l Convention is horrible idea

Paul Ogden blogged yesterday about the need for a new Constitution. Like many of my friend’s ideas, they are meant well, but horrible. A Convention can be called by two-thirds of both Houses of Congress or by two-thirds of the States’ legislatures. Const. Art. V.

The results of that convention would have to be ratified by the legislatures of “three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof...” THERE CAN BE NO LIMITS ON A CONVENTION ONCE…

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Added by Mark Small on February 14, 2021 at 8:55am — 1 Comment

7 GOP Senators approach sanity

In southern Indiana this morning I drove past three yards where Confederate flags flew, two with trump/pence flags. This afternoon trump was acquitted by the Senate, although the majority voted to convict. Seven members of the Republican Party voted Guilty.

The values of this iteration of the Republican Party are warped. They find impeachable the act of receiving oral sex in the Oval Office, but give a “pass” to a would-be dictator who sought to overturn the results of an election to…

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Added by Mark Small on February 13, 2021 at 5:29pm — No Comments

Today at 4: call in & we can discuss the strong case for impeachment 317.517.2037

Observations after Day 2 of the Impeachment trial. 1) Incitement to riot is not protected by the First Amendment. Feiner v. New York, 340 U.S. 315, 321 (1951). Trump, in his January 6 speech, used inflammatory words to move the mob.

trump (1) for months prior to and weeks after the 2020 election, disparaged its validity; (2) tweeted his followers to come D.C. for January 6, when electors’ votes would be counted: “Big protests in D.C. on January 6. Be there. Will be wild!"

The…

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Added by Mark Small on February 11, 2021 at 8:49am — No Comments

Nazis wore gray. MAGAs wear red

History is the past and the present. We can learn a lot from it. From when “with increasing frequency they were taking to the streets to molest and murder their political opponents. No election ... took place without savage battles in the gutters.”

Or how “auxiliary police” raised their flag “on office buildings everywhere” a symbolic gesture “tolerated or approved by the majority of state government ministers, who were intimidated by simultaneous demonstrations of massed columns in…

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Added by Mark Small on February 8, 2021 at 9:12pm — No Comments

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