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'Disrobed': How Conservatives Can Take Back the Courts
Human Events Online ^ | Jun 22, 2006 | Lisa De Pasquale

Posted on 07/03/2006 12:43:31 PM PDT by DBeers

'Disrobed': How Conservatives Can Take Back the Courts


In Mark W. Smith's new book, Disrobed: The New Battle Plan to Break the Left's Stranglehold on the Courts, he advocates a radical new plan for conservatives to take back the courts. After working with Mark on the research for Disrobed, I spoke with him about the reaction the book has received from conservatives and whether they will embrace lawsuits as lawmaking and conservative judicial activism.

You begin Disrobed with your reaction to the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. How did conservatives’ reaction to the nomination shape the premise of Disrobed?

Like most conservatives, the Miers nomination was a huge disappointment and made me angry. Thankfully, we dodged that bullet by making it very clear that conservatives weren’t happy. The whole debacle actually helped inspire Disrobed because it proved that not everyone “gets it” when it comes to the courts.

When the White House team defending Miers explained why Miers should be confirmed, I asked them, “Is this it?” This frustration led me to reexamine the entire movement’s approach to the courts.

Disrobed isn’t just another court book that identifies the problem and talks about the way things ought to be. It is a battle plan, based on my experience as a New York litigator and on the reality of our modern court system, to win in the courts in all respects. This means only nominating and seating “Judicial Reagans” to the bench, employing principled, conservative judicial activism, and working to destroy liberalism through strategic litigation.

How has the left taken advantage of the right’s view of the courts?

The left walks all over us in the courts because we don’t play to win. We need to embrace Ronald Reagan’s strategy in the Cold War and apply it to the courts: “We win. They lose.” The left manipulates the courts to enact its left-wing agenda because they know that they could never win in the legislature. Conversely, conservatives on demand that judges apply the “rule of law”—which would be great, except that the only laws that exist for judges to apply are those that have been infected by 50 years of liberal judicial activism.

In Disrobed, you coin the term “Judicial Reagan.” What is a Judicial Reagan? Are there any on the bench now?

A Judicial Reagan is a principled, reliable conservative willing to defend an entire set of conservative beliefs about the role of limited government, free markets, family, and government in American life. A Judicial Reagan would use the courts to advance the American ideals of faith, family and freedom, and he would do so in a manner completely consistent with the Founding Father’s vision of America. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito may be a Judicial Reagan, but it’s too soon to know.

In the chapter, “No More Souters,” you outline a litmus test for selecting judges. What are conservatives’ chances for getting these judges confirmed or elected?

Excellent if we toss aside the “conventional wisdom” that nominees should not defend themselves in the media. Ronald Reagan taught us the power of taking our message directly to “We the People” and from now on conservatives who seek to become judges should go into the new media and proudly explain what they stands for and why. Remember, liberals must speak in “code” about their actual political agenda—conservatives don’t.

What would be a key ruling that would signify a major victory for conservative judicial activism?

Striking down urban gun control laws, reversing Roe v. Wade, cutting back on economic regulations and giving American taxpayers greater legal protections against tax authorities. Also, I would love to see a conservative activist judge take over a failing school district and impose a school voucher program. A judicial ruling “in the name of diversity” requiring colleges to adopt affirmative action policies in favor of conservative professors would also be most excellent.

Is this a case of the end justifying the means? After all, what many conservatives consider a constitutional outcome seems to be the same as judicial activism with a conservative agenda?

No, not at all. Disrobed simply explains how to bring back constitutional government using the strategies and tactics of the modern legal system. We want to live in a world envisioned by the Founding Fathers. Disrobed explains how we can achieve such a world by deploying modern legal strategies and precedents to win. Our current approach is akin to bringing a knife to a gun fight.

Many of the tools you mention in Disrobed—litmus test, living Constitution, lawsuits as policymaking—provoke a visceral reaction from conservatives. How feasible is it for conservatives to embrace these tools of the left?

Conservatives need to recognize the differences between embracing the “tools” and the “ideology.” For years, conservatives correctly complained about the liberal media. However, we broke the left’s stranglehold on the media but creating our own “new” media strongholds. So too will we break the left’s stranglehold on the courts by encouraging courts to be allies of conservatives and not enemies.

Now we must apply this same strategy in the courts and we’ve already seen glimmers of this potential. Just last week Justice Scalia wrote for the Supreme Court’s majority a decision that interpreted the Constitution by discussing the “social costs” of the Fourth Amendment’s exclusionary rule. That’s what we need more of—conservative justices considering the social and political consequences of their decisions in the nation’s most important politically charged legal cases.

What has been the reaction to Disrobed and the battle plan you outline for taking back the courts?

Most conservatives are eager to understand why a staunch right-wing conservative thinks our current approach to the courts needs to be completely changed. Disrobed is not “your father’s court book” listing a bunch of complaints, but is instead a catalyst for conservatives to begin an earnest dialogue on solutions to fix the problem. And for those conservatives who disagree and think we should stay the course, I simply ask them to apply the question Dr. Phil has made famous: “How’s that been working for you?” Unfortunately, we conservatives know all to well how bad we’ve been beaten in the courts by the loony left for the last many decades.

Given that your last book, the New York Times bestseller The Official Handbook of the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy, was fairly consistent with the views of most conservatives, do you think it will help with selling the principles in Disrobed?

I am a professional litigator who handles real cases for real clients in real courts. My professional life is devoted to winning for clients. My “favorite client” is the vast right-wing conspiracy and I want it to win. In my first book, I provided conservatives with the arguments they need to win arguments against liberals whether in the media, at home or at the water cooler. In Disrobed, I applied the same premise to helping the conservatives win in the courts.

One of the most important issues facing the U.S. is illegal immigration. How can conservatives use the courts to respond to this issue?

We need to secure the border against the invasion of illegal immigrants and we also must encourage the full assimilation of legal immigrants into the American way of life. However, nobody is discussing how the courts could help reduce substantially the costs of illegal immigration to the American taxpayer. We are a single Supreme Court decision away from ending the requirement that states must provide free public education to illegal immigrants and their children. If the Supremes reversed the 1982 decision in Plyler v. Doe, then individual states could begin to refuse to pay for free public subsidies for illegal aliens, and the Supreme Court decision would provide moral and legal legitimacy for denying other public funds to illegals. This reversal alone obviously wouldn’t solve the illegal immigration problem, but it would certainly reduce its costs to taxpayers.

Certainly law schools are a battleground for advancing a conservative agenda in the courts. What can be done to encourage law graduates to embrace conservative advocacy rather than pursuing the traditional avenues conservative lawyers tend to take?

Join the Federalist Society to learn about the Founding Fathers, but then learn from your liberal law professors how to use the court system for political gain—then graduate and use the left’s legal strategies to advance free markets, God in the public square, gun rights, defending unborn children and the American way of life.

What was your experience as a conservative in law school?

I was surrounded by “wall to wall” liberalism at NYU Law School, but it taught me how our enemies think and fight. I discuss my experiences lessons in Disrobed.

What can HUMAN EVENTS readers do to break the left’s stranglehold on the courts?

We must all look for ways to turn the courts into allies of the conservative movement by following the battle plan I outline in Disrobed. We must teach ourselves to always ask “what can the courts do to advance the conservative agenda?” Remember, it was Paula Jones’ lawsuit that got Bill Clinton impeached and helped put George W. Bush in the White House.


Miss De Pasquale is CPAC director at the American Conservative Union in Alexandria, Va. Write her at lisajanine1111@aol.com


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Extended News; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: aclu; adf; homosexualagenda; judicialactivism; judiciary; leftistagenda; scotus; stoptheaclu

1 posted on 07/03/2006 12:43:39 PM PDT by DBeers
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To: DBeers
This means only nominating and seating “Judicial Reagans” to the bench, employing principled, conservative judicial activism, and working to destroy liberalism through strategic litigation.

Lawyers, bleah! How about we just get rid of activist judges and appoint persons who will defend the constitution instead of legislating from the bench?

How about apponting non-lawyers to the bench? It's not a requirement that they be lawyers. I would prefer plumbers, electricians and mechanics on the bench any day over another freaking lawyer.

2 posted on 07/03/2006 12:50:26 PM PDT by Valpal1 (Big Media is like Barney Fife with a gun.)
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To: DBeers
Also, I would love to see a conservative activist judge take over a failing school district and impose a school voucher program

Anybody else have a problem with this statement?

3 posted on 07/03/2006 12:51:02 PM PDT by ozoneliar ("The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants" -T.J.)
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To: AFA-Michigan; Abathar; AggieCPA; Agitate; AliVeritas; AllTheRage; An American In Dairyland; ...
Homosexual Agenda Ping!

If you oppose the homosexualization of society
-add yourself to the ping list!

To be included in or removed from the
HOMOSEXUAL AGENDA PING LIST,
please FReepMail either DBeers or DirtyHarryY2k.

Free Republic homosexual agenda keyword search
[ Add keyword = homosexualagenda to flag FR articles to this ping list ]

4 posted on 07/03/2006 12:53:25 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
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To: Valpal1
I would prefer plumbers, electricians and mechanics on the bench any day over another freaking lawyer.

That's a cute "sound bite" but the truth is the "real lawyers" would eat their lunch every single day. There are still plenty of very well qualified judges to pick from like Roberts and Alito.

5 posted on 07/03/2006 12:55:47 PM PDT by AmericaUnited
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To: DBeers; Bob Ireland; Congressman Billybob

Woo hoo!! Advocating war against liberal activism using their own tools! Let loose the dawgs of wahr!!


6 posted on 07/03/2006 1:01:17 PM PDT by Jim Robinson
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To: AmericaUnited
Valpall makes a very good point however.

I would prefer plumbers, electricians and mechanics on the bench any day over another freaking lawyer

The damage was done by real lawyers who ignored real law and instead put their personal "feelings" into their opinions.

A plumber can legislate from the bench just as well as any real lawyer such as Douglas, Brennan, Blackmun, Thurgood Marshall, Ginsburg, Souter, Stevens, Earl Warren, and the rest of the legal positivists.

The point is that it doesn't take a real lawyer if the activist decisions being given by real lawyers are made upon personal whims instead of intent of the Constitution.

7 posted on 07/03/2006 1:07:44 PM PDT by OriginalIntent (Undo the ACLU's revison of the Constitution. If you agree with the ACLU revisions, you are a liberal)
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To: Jim Robinson
Woo hoo!! Advocating war against liberal activism using their own tools! Let loose the dawgs of wahr!!

Yes!

:-)

8 posted on 07/03/2006 1:12:21 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
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To: DBeers; All

Please see and please see post #47 by me on that thread:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1659824/posts


9 posted on 07/03/2006 1:18:22 PM PDT by Defender2 (Defending Our Bill of Rights, Our Constitution, Our Country and Our Freedom!!!!)
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To: DBeers

All activist judges NEED TO BE IMPEACHED...simple as that...congress needs to do their jobs.


10 posted on 07/03/2006 1:20:12 PM PDT by shield (A wise man's heart is at his RIGHT hand; but a fool's heart at his LEFT. Ecc. 10:2)
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To: Valpal1
How about apponting non-lawyers to the bench?

Earl Warren was not an attorney. It is better to have someone who knows what they are doing to lead a revolution.

11 posted on 07/03/2006 2:17:26 PM PDT by ModelBreaker
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To: ModelBreaker

Some of these judges are so old they have to tie a sponge under their jaw to catch the drool.


12 posted on 07/03/2006 2:25:48 PM PDT by gaspar
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To: ModelBreaker

Earl Warren was, in fact, an attorney.

He graduated from UC-Berkeley's law school in 1914 and then practiced law 'til he was appointed Alameda County Attorney in 1925.


13 posted on 07/03/2006 2:37:46 PM PDT by MplsSteve
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To: ozoneliar
Also, I would love to see a conservative activist judge take over a failing school district and impose a school voucher program

Anybody else have a problem with this statement?

Sure. There's no such thing as a "conservative, activist judge."

Unless he actively pursues to uphold the Constitution as written. But then, of course, he's a radical, right-winger.

14 posted on 07/03/2006 2:48:28 PM PDT by HoosierHawk
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To: Valpal1

I would accept anyone who has good old American common sense.


15 posted on 07/03/2006 2:55:59 PM PDT by maxwellp
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To: DBeers
How has the left taken advantage of the right’s view of the courts?

The left walks all over us in the courts because we don’t play to win. We need to embrace Ronald Reagan’s strategy in the Cold War and apply it to the courts: “We win. They lose.” The left manipulates the courts to enact its left-wing agenda because they know that they could never win in the legislature. Conversely, conservatives demand that judges apply the “rule of law”—which would be great, except that the only laws that exist for judges to apply are those that have been infected by 50 years of liberal judicial activism.

Bork called it "judicial ratcheting". Stare decisis is the ratcheting mechanism employed against conservatives.

It only works against conservatives patsies.

..how about we win they lose? ..a fighter and non patsie.

16 posted on 07/03/2006 3:47:32 PM PDT by Donald Rumsfeld Fan ("Fake but Accurate": NY Times)
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To: Donald Rumsfeld Fan
That is: It only works against conservative patsies.
17 posted on 07/03/2006 3:50:33 PM PDT by Donald Rumsfeld Fan ("Fake but Accurate": NY Times)
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To: DBeers

Great Book.


18 posted on 07/03/2006 4:10:21 PM PDT by rmlew (I'm a Goldwater Republican... Don Goldwater 2006!)
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To: ozoneliar

"Also, I would love to see a conservative activist judge take over a failing school district and impose a school voucher program..."

Amen to that. This is no conservative writing this book, if he believes that. I also have a problem with this statement:

"That’s what we need more of—conservative justices considering the social and political consequences of their decisions in the nation’s most important politically charged legal cases."

In a conservative justice's opinion, there are no statistics.
There is no sociological data analysis.
There is no discussion of law review articles or citation to foreign law before 1776.
There is no review of the world's position, or the fifty States' positions, on any federal law.

There is the Constitution, and the intent of the Founders, and THAT IS IT.

Scalia and this guy should be ashamed for even mentioning it. The law is the law. It is black and white, in writing, immutable. It means what it says. If the legislature doesn't like the consequences of the laws they have passed, they should change them.


19 posted on 07/03/2006 4:25:41 PM PDT by LibertarianInExile ('Is' and 'amnesty' both have clear, plain meanings. Are Billy Jeff, Pence, McQueeg & Bush related?)
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To: Valpal1
How about apponting non-lawyers to the bench? It's not a requirement that they be lawyers. I would prefer plumbers, electricians and mechanics on the bench any day over another freaking lawyer.
Here's a little historical footnote: on the day that Reagan announced the appointment of Sandra Day O'Connor, The Wall Street Journal carried a Letter to the Editor which argued that there should be an economist on the Supreme Court.

I immediately thought, ". . . and I know just the person for that role - Thomas Sowell!"And then I looked at the byline of the letter. It was written by Thomas Sowell!!

Just think if Reagan had done that instead of naming Sandra Liberal O'Connor!


20 posted on 07/03/2006 4:52:39 PM PDT by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: DBeers
Some of what he advocates is judicial activism, just not liberal judicial activism. I'm against this. We don't need activist judges - that's our current problem!

If activist judges are done away with (both left and right) conservatives win.
21 posted on 07/03/2006 5:43:06 PM PDT by Jaysun (I'm from a little place called Smithereens. It ain't pretty out here.)
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Comment #22 Removed by Moderator

To: DBeers

>>> How Conservatives Can Take Back the Courts <<<<

Start with taking back the colleges & K-12 schools


23 posted on 07/03/2006 6:48:26 PM PDT by quietolong
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To: Valpal1

Many would agree with you.


24 posted on 07/03/2006 6:51:56 PM PDT by Dante3
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To: ozoneliar
"Anybody else have a problem with this statement?"

I sure do. A "conservative activist judge" is an activist judge all the same as a liberal activist judge. I prefer a judge who is an activist for the constitution, not some political ideology.

25 posted on 07/03/2006 6:56:54 PM PDT by KoRn
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
The Wall Street Journal carried a Letter to the Editor which argued that there should be an economist on the Supreme Court.

I immediately thought, ". . . and I know just the person for that role - Thomas Sowell!"And then I looked at the byline of the letter. It was written by Thomas Sowell!!

Just think if Reagan had done that instead of naming Sandra Liberal O'Connor!

Deja Vu all over again. Thought that many times myself.

26 posted on 07/03/2006 7:01:44 PM PDT by Valpal1 (Big Media is like Barney Fife with a gun.)
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To: DBeers

Bought the book. Its awesome.


27 posted on 07/03/2006 9:35:42 PM PDT by garbageseeker (It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.”Samuel Clemmens)
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To: seamole
Perhaps imprecision in my prior post needs to be clarified.

"There is no discussion of law review articles or citation to foreign law except that established before 1776."

And certainly, the intent of legislators in drafting law AFTER the Constitution was written may be relevant in interpreting ambiguity. But I do hold to the notion that the language is premier, and so if the plain meaning of the Constitutional language is clear, the historic nature or origin of the words is irrelevant and uninterpretable other than as drafted.

28 posted on 07/04/2006 12:58:01 AM PDT by LibertarianInExile ('Is' and 'amnesty' both have clear, plain meanings. Are Billy Jeff, Pence, McQueeg & Bush related?)
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To: ozoneliar

["Also, I would love to see a conservative activist judge take over a failing school district and impose a school voucher program"
Anybody else have a problem with this statement?]

No, I don't.


29 posted on 07/04/2006 6:58:11 AM PDT by khnyny (Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.- Winston Churchill)
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To: DBeers

Thanks for the ping on this one. I have this book, but haven't had a chance to read it yet! I think Disrobed should be required reading along with Mark Levin's "Men in Black".


30 posted on 07/04/2006 7:01:00 AM PDT by khnyny (Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.- Winston Churchill)
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To: garbageseeker
The scary part is that judges are getting away with making the most outrageous decisions, blatantly violating their oath of office, and interfering into every aspect of our lives. Scores of judges have given a pass to dangerous pedophiles, one judge in Arizona even dictated the school budget and graduating requirements for the state, etc.

We have been moving towards a dictatorship of judges - a krytocracy, and in some parts of the country it is a reality. There is no excuse for letting them get away with it, but our elected officials are doing just that.

31 posted on 07/04/2006 7:09:39 AM PDT by Dante3
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To: Jim Robinson
It seems to me that GW has let us down; Harriet Miers was an indicator that points to our disappointment. GW has not fought for his judicial nominees - until the SCOTUS nominees in his second term. Estrada withdrew his name - after being smeared mercilessly for four years: for what? His life ruined for nothing!

I understand there are a number of lower court nominees still languishing, and may continue to do so until Bush leaves office. That would be a real travesty.

If those postings go un-filled and a Dem is elected to the WH in two years [G*d forbid!!!], the courts will continue to be the greatest enemy of the Constitution.

Since Bush became Prez the SCOTUS has abridged the First Amend [CFR], the Fourth Amend [property rights] and now have abridged the Prez's ability to wage war... It isn't hard to see the rest of the Bill of Rights being ploughed under.

FReegards,
Bob I

32 posted on 07/04/2006 9:21:31 AM PDT by Bob Ireland (The Democrat Party is a criminal enterprise)
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To: Bob Ireland

I find it strange that President Bush has been so reluctant to fill court vacancies.


33 posted on 07/04/2006 9:34:41 AM PDT by Dante3
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To: Bob Ireland
Well, I remember how hard we all worked to keep Al Gore and the corrupt Democrats from stealing the election in 2000 and how happy we were on Inauguration Day. And despite the disappointments with CFR, etc, I thank God every day that Bush was president on 9/11 and not Gore. And then all that had to be repeated in 2004. Thank God the treasonous John Kerry was blocked from stealing that election. And thank God that neither Gore or Kerry are appointing our judges today. I see it as one of the most important things we can do this November for ourselves and our posterity is to give the president an even greater majority in the Senate so he can continue replacing liberal activists with constitutionalists in the courts. Especially since there may be at least one more opening on the SCOTUS before Bush's term is up. If we get another like Roberts or Alito on the bench, we'll begin seeing a lot more of those 5 to 4 decisions going our way for a change. Hang in there, Bob. Purging the liberal activists from the judiciary is the key to winning this 100 year war against the socialists and that's why the Democrats and RINOs are working overtime at being fat-assed obstructionists. We've got them on the run. Don't go wobbly on us now.

Hope you're having a great Independence Day!!

34 posted on 07/04/2006 1:22:30 PM PDT by Jim Robinson
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To: Jim Robinson
***Don't go wobbly on us now***

You have put your finger on the challenge; after so many years of voting - right up to where I am now in the majority - I still have no representation in D.C. When a conservative does stand up - like Delay - they are destroyed by the commies and our side cowers in the corner slavering all over themselves in abject fear.

...then, here in Fla, they have pretty much disenfranchised me. This state is run by Repubs, yet they gerrymandered me out of west Orlando [where I live] and put me into West Jacksonville, where I don't even know the area code. My state and federal reps are all Dem communists who could care less if I drop dead... and I am overwhelmingly out-voted by the dumbest people in America.

So my vote only counts for U.S. Senate and Prez...

Still, you are right: all we can do is hang in there and keep bailing out the ocean... maybe someday my prince will come! ;-)

35 posted on 07/05/2006 9:48:09 AM PDT by Bob Ireland (The Democrat Party is a criminal enterprise)
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To: garbageseeker
Bought the book. Its awesome.

I recently saw the author interviewed on C-SPAN and it sounded like a good book with good advice...

36 posted on 07/05/2006 7:16:40 PM PDT by DBeers (†)
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To: DBeers
I strongly urge you and anyone out there to purchase the book. It is a blueprint to take back our country and give the liberals a taste of their own medicine.
37 posted on 07/05/2006 7:44:50 PM PDT by garbageseeker (It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.”Samuel Clemmens)
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To: ozoneliar

There's where you separate the old-school political conservatives from the socially conservative political opportunists.


38 posted on 07/05/2006 7:53:49 PM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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