These ideas are from the Platform of the American People, all backed up by a majority of the GOP, Democrats, and Independents polled. (See americansolutions.com.) TCR counts 94 different principles of which we only provide the top ones here by their margin of support:
- It is important for the president and congress to address the issue of Social Security in the next few years (96% Support - 2% Opposed)
- We have an obligation to be good stewards of God's creation for future generations (95-3)
- Children should be allowed a moment of silence to pray for themselves in public school if they desire (94-5)
- Al Qaeda poses a very serious threat to American (93-5)
- It is important to acknowledge today the reference to God in the Declaration of Independence - that we are endowed by our creator with the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (93-6)
- When applying for a temporary work visa each worker should take an oath to obey American law and agree to be deported if they commit a crime while in the U.S. (93-8)
- Our goal should be to provide long term solutions instead of short term fixes (92-5)
- We should hold city governments to the same standards for cleaning waste water as are applied to private industry (91-5)
- We should dramatically increase our investment in math and science education (91-8)
- We approve of a Christmas tree or a menorah being placed on public property during the holiday season (90-7)
- We should give tax credits to homeowners and builders who incorporate alternative energy systems in the homes, like solar, wind and geothermal (90-8)
TCR Comment: Newt Gingrich and American Solutions are on to something here. This is good work here, a platform for all of us.
A Texan Visits South America
Your editor recently had the opportunity to visit Argentina, Uruguay, and Chile. All three are interesting countries with growing economies and some of the most beautiful (and not overrun) scenery around.
The countries each have their own assets and liabilities. The local politics has been influenced by Hugo Chavez of Venezuela (who is close to the Presidents of Chile and Argentina), but the people are nice to Americans and not fixated on the big brother to the north.
Average citizens appear to be comfortable with foreign investments such as Spanish-owned toll roads and phone system. They support free trade but do not want to be treated as inferior to the U.S.
Chile has its own illegal immigration problem from Ecuador and Bolivia, and they live in shantytowns. It does not seem like they have an easy answer to that problem either.
The dollar still has pretty good value in South America (but not as good as the Euro or Pound for European travelers) and prices are good, although food is more expensive in Chile.
A few observations, the vast majority of cars on the road are small. But with the price of gasoline so high, you understand why. Maybe our fleet will evolve downward in size as gas prices continue to rise.
In Buenos Aires, two of the more interesting observations are dog walkers and recyclers. Dog walking is a big business with many walking up to 20 dogs at a time! The recyclers or urban miners roam the streets after 9 pm with humongous plastic bags and clean out from the garbage any plastics, tin, and aluminum. It reduces solid waste, gives jobs to the poor, but leaves a mess on the streets.
A highly recommended area to visit, although America has some work to do to remain influential.
Provocation In Persian Gulf:
U.S. Unresponsiveness Troubling
And Aids Radical Iranian President
On January 6 the Iranian Revolutionary Guard (recently labeled a terrorist organization by the U.S.) provoked a U.S. Navy convoy in international waters by bringing its naval speedboats, which can be used to ram and possibly sink U.S. vessels, close to U.S. ships.
The U.S. ship did nothing and should have shot them out of the water. Instead, we handed the radicals a victory in showing the U.S. is timid in its encounters with Iran.
In this area of the world the message sent is a damaging one to our interest and will encourage other provocations.
TCR wonders, is the U.S. military or civilian leadership ready to do what is needed?
Returning Feature: TCR Book Corner
"So called" experts say we do not read anymore, but more books are sold each year. At any rate, periodically we will share with you our current readings and we welcome your suggestions.
A History of the English Speaking People since 1900 by Andrew Roberts. He continues the history of the English speaking people started by Churchill in a fascinating stylistic and common sense retelling. Highly recommended.
Microtrends by Mark Penn. Clinton pollster looks at small patterns in our business, politics, and culture that will cause profound changes. Is this the key to political success in 2008?
Mexifornia by Victor David Hanson. Our immigration mess, who made it, who benefits, and how assimilation, enforcement, integration, and intermarriage can help remedy our problems, otherwise we are in trouble.
War Footing - 10 steps America must take to prevail in the war for the free world by Frank Gaffney. A strategy for winning the war with radical Islam, how to understand them, enlist others, help our troops, engage our citizens, provide energy security and make sure we win in 296 pages. Too bad the rudderless politicians will not read it and will not do what needs to be done.
The Secret History of the American Empire by John Perkins. A stunning book that indicts multinational corporations and their role in creating an American empire and the collateral damages that flow from it. This is a view of the U.S. and its companies from a negative perspective, with such ideas as how business benefited from defeats in Vietnam and Iraq, U.S. overseas blunders in Congo, Lebanon, Venezuela, and involvement in the assassinations of democratic presidents. Compelling, interesting and disturbing, we hope it is not true.
TCR does read a lot and so should you. Among other things, it exercises your mind.
COMING Friday, January 25, 2008 at 8:00 pm on Channel 8 PBS in Houston, Texas - The Connection - Red, White & Blue, featuring TCR Editor Gary Polland and liberal commentator David Jones with the GOP County Judge debate with Judge Ed Emmett v. Charles Bacarisse. Coming soon: David Frum, former chief speechwriter to President Bush and author of the new book Comeback Conservatism that Can Win Again and the Harris County District Attorney GOP debate.
About Your Editor
Gary Polland is a long-time conservative and Republican spokesman, fund-raiser, and leader who recently completed three terms as the Harris County Republican Chairman. During his three terms, Gary was described as the most successful county Chairman in America by Human Events - The National Conservative Weekly. He is in his tenth year of editing a newsletter dealing with key conservative and Republican issues. The last six years he has edited Texas Conservative Review. Gary is a practicing attorney and strategic consultant. He can be reached at (713) 621-6335.