Indiana’s ballot access/primary election laws are unconstitutional and corrupt

We’ve been so systematically and trans-generationally deceived about the recent, unconstitutional, corrupt, self-appointed “Two Party System” that it’s understandably hard to believe the truth.  I’ve laid out my case several times in the past, but it’s worth trying again.  This time I’ll just lay out the facts and try (try…I really will try) to avoid pontificating.

Please read the following and come to your own conclusions.  If they’re different from mine, let me know what you think I’ve got wrong.  But if you agree with me…won’t you consider rising to action?

 

Facts:

Candidate caste system:

Indiana Code has in the past forty years created seven separate classes of candidates respecting ballot access, as well as for other increasingly divergent privileges, powers, immunities and liabilities under “law.”[i]

  1. The “Major Political Parties” defined by IC § 3-5-2-30, and by which there can only be two, is by far the most empowered class. Only MPPs can have poll clerks, election sheriffs and other election officers, and have members on election-related commissions.  MPPs have the easiest, and in most cases, automatic ballot access in at least one election per cycle.  Few races require ballot signatures.  Only MPPs have actual ruling power granted to them (for example, appointment to the Indiana Election Commission IC § 3-6-4.1-2, Recount Commission, etc.).   At present and for the foreseeable future (see #2 below), only MPPs get the extra public exposure, debates, taxpayer paid promotion and primary elections to put the imprimatur of legitimacy and favorable odds on their candidates.  To be crystal clear – the MPPS are exactly and only the Democratic and Republican parties – which are, in Indiana, only recently incorporated (Indiana GOP incorporated in 2005) quasi-chapters of the national, private 527 corporations.
  2. The second class defined by IC § 3-10-1-2 is hypothetical, since it would be any non-MPP political parties whose candidate for Secretary of State received at least ten percent of the votes cast in the previous election. That’s not just a difficult thing to achieve for a “third party;” it’s an odd, artificial goal for a political party where other offices would be considered much more important and ideologically relevant.  While no such parties exist in Indiana, second-class parties could have precinct committeemen, and participate in publicly funded primary elections.
  3. Members of the Indiana Libertarian Party are the only people to have made the third class of citizens.  They have automatic ballot access by having maintained at least 2% of the General Election vote in the Secretary of State Race.  In some ways, third-class people have the easiest path to getting on the General Election ballot.  But they cannot participate in primary elections, or have the officers/organizational advantages and governing powers of the MPPs or 2nd-class parties.
  4. In 1993, IC § 3-5-2-5.5 created the class, “Bona fide political party.” This includes the first-through-third classes, but also grants another class that allows a party its own poll watchers, and provides it certain election/voter-related information.  It is very difficult for them to get on the General Election ballot even in local races, as their hurdles are very greatly higher than the 3rd-class citizens’.  Their ability to participate in elections (debates, media, any public exposure), either General or Primary, is extremely limited.
  5. All other political parties fall in the 5th-ranked citizen class. There are many of these, but entirely out of the public view except in local races or as write-in candidates.
  6. Independent candidates cannot possibly participate in primary elections, even if they can overcome the obstacles both put in their way, and doubled in severity through the past thirty years (double the ballot signature requirements for example). Independent candidates face more hurdles than even 5th-ranked citizens, in some ways.
  7. Write-in candidates are those who failed to meet the requirements for ballot access in any of the previous classes, though there is overlap with the 5th and 6th-ranked classes. Though it’s not supposed to happen, votes for such candidates have often been thrown out in my experience (my own write-in votes, for example).  It’s very unlikely that these candidates would ever be listed in any candidate information guides, let alone be able to participate in candidate debates and media interviews.

 

Primary Elections:

The primary election system in the USA was promoted by the “Progressive” movement (they were NOT Democrats then!).  The first statewide primary election was in Florida, in 1899; but not all states have them for all elections even today.  Most states didn’t until the 1970’s, when their importance and power to the Democratic and Republican parties increased dramatically.  The point here being that primary elections are recent inventions…not at all part of the constitutional design, or even universal today.

  1. IC § 3-5-1-2 defines the purpose of primary elections to choose the following:
    1. The candidates who will be the nominees of a political party for elected offices in a general or municipal election.
    2. The precinct committeemen of a political party.
    3. The delegates to a political party’s state convention.
  2. IC § 3-5-3-7 (and others) require that taxpayers bear the full cost of primary elections.
  3. Primary elections provide benefits (debates, public exposure/advertising, listing in election reference sources half a year before other candidates) to only participant candidates and parties, which creates both relative and absolute disadvantages to all other candidates and parties.
  4. “Blanket primaries,” which offer the most options/choice to voters in selecting candidates, have not existed since 2003, when the SCOTUS decided that primary elections are for parties allowed to participate in primaries, and not for voters.
  5. Many candidates have no primary challenger. In these cases primary elections serve only the purpose of promoting candidates; not selecting them.
  6. The whole purpose of a political campaign is to gain public exposure and the imprimatur of legitimacy offered in debates, public media and recent expectations of a “Two Party System.” The extended campaign cycles resulting from taxpayer-funded primary elections are worth more promotion money than most candidates can ever raise.

Issue: Indiana’s Constitution plainly forbids the separate classes of citizens under law.  The violation of Article I Section 23 by Indiana’s election/ballot laws provides benefits to only the politically favored class, and at the expense of everyone else.  The unconstitutional Indiana Code that created and maintains the anti-competitive entrenchment allows only Democrats and Republicans to write the rules, enforce the rules, and count the votes…all at taxpayer expense.

Rule: The Indiana Constitution’s Article I Section 23: “The General Assembly shall not grant to any citizen, or class of citizens, privileges or immunities, which, upon the same terms, shall not equally belong to all citizens.”liberty

Summary: Article I Section 23 was enacted largely to prevent corruption, anti-competitive favoritism, and government-entrenched monopolies.   Indiana’s recent election-related codes reward corruption through institutionalized favoritism and government-entrenched monopolies.

So, we need a court case.  Maybe an amicus brief.  Maybe ask for summary judgment.  If we had enough people to make it happen, a big honking jury trial with plaintiffs and damages and media and a movie starring only liberty-leaning stars from Hollywood to Bollywood.  But more likely, a multi-step legal challenge in Indiana (where we’ve got just about the worst ballot access rules, but one of the very best state constitutions) where we’d almost certainly lose the first round, but end up in the state Supreme Court with a more publicly visible, and maybe even winning case against what plagues us all.

But that’s up to you.  Whatever we do, we need more people than just me fighting this.

 

[i]Article I Section 25 nullifies any Indiana law depending upon any authority but the Indiana Constitution: “No law shall be passed, the taking effect of which shall be made to depend upon any authority, except as provided in this Constitution.”  If there can be no such law, there can be no judgment or executive action favoring laws that cannot legally exist.  Article I Section 25 is an absolute ban on any government action exceeding the limits prescribed by the state’s constitution.

Tribalism Sucks

MAGA.gif

Unless you wear a MAGA hat to bed, you know our government is headed in the wrong direction.  Unless you’re crazy, you know our government is corrupt.  Unless you’re a genuinely rotten person, you want much, much more peace, prosperity, security, and doggone it…freedom, for both yourself, and all your fellow citizens.

But unless you’re in the less-than-10% (typically more like 3-4%) who ever vote for third party or independent candidates, you chose this complicated, legalistic/ rule-fraught, unfair, dysfunctional and globally violent corruption. All of it.

I don’t mean to be an insulting knowitall, but this is very simple in a nation with elections:

Bernie

Either you use your power of peaceful revolution to oppose what’s not working and replace it with new guards for our future security, or you’re actually supporting the bad guys. If you’re not actively firing the bad guys with your vote, you’re as much as hiring them; either by direct choice, or in vapid inaction.

Now you may not disagree with that last paragraph. That may be while you’re still reading.

But there’s also simple logic in determining just who the bad guys really are.

And that is likely where 90% of voters will disagree.

Our constitutions were written in large part to prevent politicians from granting “to any citizen, or class of citizens, privileges or immunities, which, upon the same terms, shall not equally belong to all citizens.” (Indiana Constitution Article I Section 23)

This applies to everything political; from fair trade, housing and corporate laws to …ballot access.

Yet everyone with a living brain cell knows that our political scheme is all about special deals for special people.  Politically favored corporations get special rules that ensure protected profits without fear of competition.  Politically favored people get special legal/tax exemptions, or Get Out Of Jail Free cards.cropped-liberty

I contend that a fundamental part of the problem is the recent, self-appointed, tribal, monopolistic and genuinely stupid “Two Party System.”

Since WWII, and mostly since the 1970s, and varying state-to-state …ONLY Democrats and Republicans can be on election-related commissions, and have special election status that grants them more money, more ballot access, and more power in government.

Not only have these private clubs granted themselves special powers, but they have also imposed special hurdles and handicaps on any group or individual who’d challenge them.

Most of us understand that if there was by law only one manufacturer of coffee, or shoes, or cars, that costs and quality would be horrendous.  Most of us could imagine that even with two options, there’d soon be so much collusion and price-fixing to squeeze out any other competition that, in effect, there’d really be only one option with two faces.  Many of us disdain the rapidly clotting mergers of media, pharmaceutical and healthcare empires just the way many thought it right to bust up the old monopolies in telephone and power service.

And all of us benefit from the profusion of choices in food, clothing, electronics and other, relatively lightly-regulated industries.

So what’s up with the “Two Party System?”

Not only is it not ordained by constitutions, the Bible or physics, it’s actually anti-constitutional, by both state and federal constitutions.

You’ve got to be blind and deaf to miss the collusion and corruption of this monstrosity. You’d have to be either part of their crony crime ring, or crazy, to actually like this almost-universally-detested tribal ruling class.

TheEnemyBut you’d be a rare and precious person to actually vote against it.

I’ll just say it. If you vote for any part, any candidate of the Two Party System, you’re at least sustaining the problem.  Even the best (D) and (R) candidates represent the false hope of fixing a tribal system that doesn’t want to be fixed, and is well-organized against anybody who’d try.

More to the point – if you never vote for any alternatives to the status quo power structure, you ARE the problem. 

All the issues of incumbency – entrenchment of power and money, influence of monied connections, corruption – that goes double for political parties.  While politicians eventually die, their power structures too-often live on…and on…and on.

It’d be simple and easy to fix it all.  But you’d have to:

1. Understand the problem, and

2. Change your choices.  YOUR choices.

Come one, my fellows and friends. We’ve all but ended institutional slavery. We’ve extended the vote to every citizen (both living and dead, along with non-citizens, too…but that’s another story).

Nearly everybody says, “I don’t vote for the party, I vote for the candidate,” and up to now, they’ve mostly been lying.

Nearly everybody says, “Yeah, but look at the choices they give us…” as if we have no choice in that.lucy-charlie-brown-football

Well-over 90% of us keep doing the same stupid thing and never see the connection between bad choices and bad outcomes.

What’s really sad is that there are just as many great people as ever.  Many could be Founding Fathers (and founding mothers and/or non-binary whatevers) of a new and better age; learning lessons of the past and creating a better future.   

It’s just that now such people are pushed aside in favor of body-painted tribal savages and criminal clowns.  Too few ever throw their own hat into the ring, and yet love to complain.

So let’s snap out of that and finally use our votes as intended…as weapons of peaceful, orderly revolution, and end the rule of clans and tribes and gangs at last.

 

A “hearing” without ears

Post mortem on the Pro Tempore hearing

OK, so “hearing” is the wrong word, because they voted to not hear me at all.

I gave them written copies of the 10-point argument below, but they were handed back, saying it would be “inappropriate” for them to read it.  Of course, the State’s attorney did hand me nine-thousand pages of their arguments*…about why I should shut up and go away, as it turned out.

After spending ten minutes going over the rules (including how I’d get ten minutes to make my case) and other niceties of procedure, the State moved to dismiss the complaint on the grounds that whatever I’d have to say should’ve been said in July, and they’re sure that what I’d say would be the same as what was already said anyway…AndyTriesAgain

…Even though I wasn’t there in July, and it wasn’t the same argument.  And I was there to represent another person’s CAN-1 challenge (Ben Tackitt) who couldn’t make it to this hearing.

You see, the state arranges these meetings at inconvenient times in places with exotically expensive parking for a reason

And so, the State (everyone of authority in the hearing was paid as an administrative judge working as an agent/employee of Connie Lawson with a built-in and unconstitutional conflict of interest…whatta surprise) voted to reject CAUSE NUMBER 2018-124.  They wouldn’t give me even my ten minutes.  Not even two.

Even as they tried to shush me, I asked, “Does this exhaust my administrative remedy?

If they answered no, then I should’ve been allowed to speak.  If they answered yes, then it’d be clear that I’ve got a court case with no administrative remedy (helping me ascend to that diaphanous, magical and nearly unattainable quality of “standing” before the court).

So attorney Brad King told them not to answer me.

I was railroaded.  Again.

I really didn’t expect better.  I mean, how weird would be for the state’s cronies to vote against themselves?

HeroIt’s voters who’re supposed to vote against such corruption and entrenchment of power.  If I’ve done anything at all with my efforts over the decades, I have proven (over and over and over and…) that I can’t fly onto the scene with my ray-gun and save the day, dang it.

I’d like to, of course.  But I can’t.  It takes numbers.

My hope all along was that ordinary folks would hear about this case, and DO SOMETHING about it!

PoliticsMonsterThat’s my hope (not my expectation…but I do hope).

This cause was only one example of the continuous expansion of political powers and reduction of citizen powers and rights by unconstitutional legislation, and evermore-damaging constitutional amendments, which have spawned a culture of political cronyism that foils the purpose of term limits, democratic elections, and constitutional rule of law…

…Sigh…  <deep breath>

cropped-youSo I’m posting this for you, in the hopes that you’ll read it, agree that injustice is being done, and tell others about it.

Of course I hope you’ll do even more than that (write letters to the editor, call-in to radio shows, start a lawsuit, organize protest marches, foment revolution…).  But even if telling others is all you do, I’d be delighted, and grateful.

Anyway, here’s pretty much what I would’ve said today, if given the chance; it’s what I tried to hand them on paper at the hearing.  But none of this was heard, or read:

  1. Article I, Section 25 of the Indiana Constitution makes plain that there is no legal state authority except by specific provision in the constitution. Indiana Code does not create authority; all legal authority rests only upon the Indiana Constitution. All officeholders are required by oath of office to uphold this fundamental rule of law.  The state’s case rests entirely upon Indiana Code which contradicts and violates the state constitution.

  2. As of today, there are only two constitutionally clear ways to empower a Secretary of State; election by the voters of the state (Article 6, Section 1), and by gubernatorial appointment (Article 5 Section 18).

  3. Constitutional provisions in Article 5, Section 18 and Article 15, Section 3 ensure that no Indiana office is left vacated, yet make no special or extra-ordinary definition of pro tempore.  The specific constitutional authority to issue writs of election was repealed in 1984 (Article 5, Section 19), making it less constitutionally clear when, how, and by whom, special elections are to be called.  But the definition of pro tempore has always been known to be transitory and provisional.

  4. The original 1851 Article 6, Section 1 of the Indiana Constitution mandated: “There shall be elected, by the voters of the State, a Secretary, and Auditor and a Treasurer of State, who shall, severally, hold their offices for two years. They shall perform such duties as may be enjoined by law; and no person shall be eligible to either (sic) of said offices, more than four years in any period of six years.”  The original wording makes evident the erosion of constitutional protections as demonstrated by the doubling of term limits in 1970.  Article 2 Section 11, unchanged from 1851, made more sense in the context of short term limits: “… an appointment pro tempore shall not be reckoned a part of that term.”  Lawson’s first term as SOS was longer than the 1851 full term of elected office, and was over half the entire 1851 term limit.

  5. On February 4, 2012, former Secretary of State Charlie White was removed from office, and Jerold A. Bonnet was made the temporary, interim, pro tempore Secretary of State of Indiana.  This appointment was unquestionably pro tempore because there was a legal challenge to White’s 2010 ballot eligibility, throwing into question how the SOS office would be filled, though by original constitutional design and one judge’s ruling, either Democrat Vop Osili should have confirmed, or been a special election should have been called.

  6. On March 16, 2012, Mitch Daniels named Connie Lawson the new Secretary of State. There was no contingency or compromise to this appointment. Connie Lawson’s unconditional replacement of Charlie White and Jerold Bonnet was not pro tempore by any definition of pro tempore (proxy, locum tenens or conditional officeholder – e.g., the President pro tempore of the Senate, who stands-in for the Lt. Governor’s role as President of the Senate, or Judge Pro Tem who stands in for another judge). Jerold A. Bonnet was unquestionably the only pro tempore Secretary of State.

  7. The intent of the term limitation, even as of 1970, was to limit the power and electoral advantage of incumbency, limit the entrenchment of factions, and inhibit politics as a lifetime career.

  8. The purpose of democratic elections is to both thwart crony entrenchment, and to give equal opportunity for all people, without any special classes of citizen powers, privileges or immunities, an equal chance to serve their society.

  9. Precedent” is not law.  Only legislators can make law.  While this is most plainly stated in the federal constitution, the state constitution follows the same form of separation of powers.  And Article I, Section 25 of the Indiana Constitution does indeed forbid law by precedent, as it is rule-making without constitutional provision, process or authority.

  10. SUMMARY: Connie Lawson’s first term of office was not pro tempore.  And as per arguments previously submitted for Indiana Election Commission CAUSE NUMBER 2018-12, she is not eligible for election to a term of office she cannot lawfully complete.  At best, Lawson’s candidacy strains electoral propriety, and taints the credibility of Indiana’s chief election officer.  But more seriously, to allow this candidacy to go forward presents an abuse of public trust, as well as an egregious violation of Indiana’s governing authority – the Indiana Constitution.

###

So, what comes next?

Plan B

Will the GOP get away with this obvious scheme to simply appoint cronies who can then run in the next election with all the advantages of incumbency?  Are they going to kick out Curtis Hill so they can appoint a more insider-friendly replacement?  Is this whole democratic process and term-limits thing kaput?

Well, that’s up to you.

 

 

 

 

*Lawyers like to intimidate people with piles of paper and ink.  In fact it came up in the hearing how much time and money in billable hours were wasted on my futile attempts at justice.

We were railroaded.

Indiana Election Board CAUSE NUMBER: 2018-12 was dismissed on the grounds that Connie Lawson’s appointed term of office as Secretary of State was pro tempore.

But the state and anyone who follows such things would know that’s not true at all.

Because there was an actual pro tempore appointment before Connie Lawson.

Jerold A. Bonnet

While Wikipedia is not a final authority on such matters, this is a good summary of the case: “A lawyer by profession, Bonnet was the deputy Secretary when his superior Charlie White lost his position after being convicted of voter fraud, leading Governor Mitch Daniels on February 4, 2012, to appoint Bonnet until a permanent successor could be chosen. Holding the office for an uneventful term of over a month, Bonnet was succeeded by Connie Lawson on March 16. Currently, Bonnet serves as the chief legal counsel in Lawson’s administration.”

Note the wording, “…appoint Bonnet until,” and “until a permanent successor could be chosen.”  That is how pro tempore works.

tenorOf course Lawson’s defenders also cited case law to weaponize their attack on The People, constitutional rule of law, decency, truth, honor and all that’s good and wholesome.  But as I’m sure YOU know, case law cannot be law!

Now, as an ordinary citizen who doesn’t have the mean$ to fight this, and without any apparent public interest in the matter, I am forced to just walk away from this example of ungoverned government.

But for anyone paying attention, you’ve been railroaded too.

It’s up to US to drain the swamp!

If there are flaws in our state and federal constitutions, they are these:

  1. There are no specified remedies for violating them. Our founders assumed we’d know (i.e., nullification, impeachment, and …quit reelecting them!), but we clearly do not know!  Not surprising, after a couple hundred years of politicians’ lies.

  2. Seemingly equivocal prohibitions against the “whispering down the lane” or “telephone game” judicial/ legislative/bureaucratic corruption of our constitutions by incrementally perverted interpretation.  While the constitutions do clearly say what they say, it’s obvious that with every new case, every new law, every legal argument, there are new divergences from core principles and fundamental laws.  It’s gotten so bad through the past century that instead of consulting the actual words of our constitutions, we now consider previous court decrees as the authoritative law.

So now, politicians assert in court and in practice, that whatever’s not specifically prohibited from politicians, is within their authority.BWLadyLib

That is of course opposite of the whole point of constitutions.

Constitutions are to restrain politicians, not citizens.

Despots have for millennia gained power without elections, and made their own rules as they wished.  The USA was supposed to be better than that.

hand-coming-up-from-the-swamp-554x350

Instead, we’re drowning in corruption.  It’s been too long since there’s been any organized attempt to legitimize and govern our government by the actual words of our federal and state constitutions.

So, about now, the Indiana Election Division should receive the CAN-I candidate filing challenge I signed on July 10.

Besides the fact that it’s an obvious trick to appoint a GOP-insider/swamp incumbent for the next SOS race, there’s a legal problem with the candidacy of incumbent Secretary of State Connie Lawson.  Please note, it has nothing to do with her, personally, and everything to do with corruption of our constitutional Rule of Law:

Article 6, Section 1 of the Indiana Constitution specifies that, “There shall be elected, by the voters of the state, a Secretary, an Auditor and a Treasurer of State, who shall, severally, hold their offices for four years. They shall perform such duties as may be enjoined by law; and no person shall be eligible to either (sic) of said offices, more than eight years in any period of twelve years.” – (As Amended November 3, 1970)

Now, legislators can and do make mistakes.  Frequently.  The word “either” is, for example, a mistake.  But please note these key words and phrases:

“There shall be elected… who shallhold their offices for four years.”

“…and no person shall be eligible to …said offices, more than eight years in any period of twelve years.”

“Shall” is a strong imperative.  It is not “may hold” or “can, if the law doesn’t prohibit it, hold.”

No, it’s SHALL, as if written in stone tablets.

The word “shall” is in all the key places of “elected,” “hold,” “perform,” and “eligible.”

So, very clearly by the letter and intent of this constitutional term limit, no person shall be eligible for election to a public role they are constitutionally forbidden from performing as mandated in the letter and intent of the law.

The state will of course claim that Lawson’s first term was pro tempore; and that it therefore doesn’t count as a term of office.  But Jerry Bonnet was the actual pro tempore SOS.  Lawson was a full replacement for the ousted Charlie White…and Jerry Bonnet! 

So, no…there is no constitutional excuse for this.

Incumbent Secretary of State Connie Lawson is constitutionally forbidden from performing the specified role in the terms clearly specified in the constitution.

She is an ineligible candidate.  And the GOP is using her situation to hoodwink us.

Again.

I say no.  I’m throwing a flag on this play.

FlagOnThePlay

Realistically, we’re doomed.

All of the most self-defeating things I ever hear begin with something like, “Realistically…”

At least in a political context, whenever I hear words and phrases like “pragmatic,” “the way things are,” and, of course, “realistically,” I know what comes next is a lame rationalization of wrong.

Right?

Instead of saying, “That’s a great dream! Let’s make it happen,” the “realistic” person’s got to say, “realistically, you must choose the ‘lesser of two evils;’” or, “Whoa there; these things take time.  Realistically, you’ve got to ‘take baby steps,’ ‘work within the system,’ and ‘you can’t fight city hall.’”

Even so-called “third parties” concentrate on “winnable” races, even if that means that they sacrifice a statewide televised platform to discuss real differentiating issues.  It also means the most visible races go unchallenged or are contested by lesser candidates who put their party in a bad light.  And, of course, when they do win a “winnable” race, that means it’s such small potatoes that nobody will ever hear about it anyway.

“Realistically,” they’ll say, “you don’t stand a chance.”  “You have to,” they tell me, “play the game.”  “Start at the bottom and work your way up,” they say.

TheEnemyI am pretty certain this is why human civilizations have a 100% failure rate.  There are too many unwitting servants of the status quo, and far too few revolutionaries.  Too many people think like plodding, duty-bound bureaucrats, and too few think like passionate, principled visionaries.

I am sure we have a sufficient number of dreamers;  it’s just that the dream-squashing Powers-That-Be puppets outnumber them, parrot the officially-approved talking points, run the media, and are currently in charge of pretty much everything on the planet.

This so unnecessary, so sad, so self-destructive.

To cave in to odds is to shuffle toward societal collapse.  To accept even mediocrity, let alone “lesser evil,” is to voluntarily, actively, choose failure.  (see aforementioned failure rate)

And that, is a denial of our very real power and accountability to do better.

I’ve spoken to more than a few voters.  I see what they do every Election Day. Collectively, we really did choose exactly what we’ve got.  We’ve chosen badly, and keep re-electing the badly-chosen.charlie-brown-and-lucy-with-football

We can’t blame anybody else for that.  But we sure try to.  The “Two Party System,” corruption, lobbyists, and “there ought to be a law” all get blame.  And those things are, granted, terrible. terrible.

But we chose it.  All of it.charlie-brown-football

And it looks like we’ll do it again this November.

We do this over, and over, and over again.

We never learn.

My enduring hope (and I believe our culture’s only hope) is that we’ll snap out of our madness and choose better.

Now, I do understand the roadblocks.

  1. There’s a vast, nearly-diametrically-opposed difference between a good candidate, and a good politician.  We expect a good candidate1 to be a market phenomenon; sort of like a movie production with a cast of hundreds.  The very “best” candidates are usually much less impressive as individuals than they are as a puppet figurehead/mascot of a team.  You rarely hear or see the politician as a person, actually.  You see a managed message crafted by professional staff.  A good politician, on the other hand, must be an honest, scrupulous statesman; hardly the sort of performance artist who’d be a media hit in this climate…amiright?  The job of a candidate is to get elected and reelected.  The job of a statesman is to serve his fellow humans by holding a leash on that dangerous abstraction we call “politics.”  And that apparently doesn’t sell well today.
  2. The best candidates are bought.  We all know it. But we never follow the money and come to the correct conclusions, do we?  In fact, we do the opposite.  We see our candidates in order of odds and money, not in order of principles and actions.  We treat this more like pro sports, and less like real life with you as a key actor.  And that’s at least partly because…
  3. All the major media are bought, and not just by the best candidates.  The major media are wholly owned and operated by the same military industrialists, financial services moguls and kingmakers that own and operate all the best candidates.  Look at how they cover campaigns.  Look even at the order in which they list candidates in articles.  It’s not alphabetical, is it?  And try to look for what doesn’t even make it to your eyes and ears.  Almost all of the very best statesmen are rendered invisible and voiceless by our incessant, loud and omnipresent media – both old and new.  Your senses are overloaded by their choices such that you may never get to hear what would be better choices.  That leaves you too numb and worn-out to scour the fine print, rumors and internet for better choices.
  4. The rules we now call election and campaign finance “laws” were written by all the best candidates, so of course they’re unconstitutional, corrupt, and serve to stifle better options.
  5. We don’t want to admit that we’re responsible for our choices, and that our choices really do matter, and that we could change our choices, because that’d be the same as admitting that we’ve screwed up for years!  I get it.  I’ve been there, done that…and in ways I still don’t want to admit.

But now let me describe your opportunity.

  1. You get what you choose.  If you choose better, you get better.  If you decide to vote against evil entirely, what’s “lesser” or “greater” won’t matter.  You really do get what you, personally, choose, because you are not as alone as you’ve told yourself.  Not everybody else is an idiot.  More people than you likely think, are thinking, and acting, just like you.  Most people are just looking for somebody else to make the first move.
  2. It doesn’t take a majority to change things.  In fact, it has never worked that way.  The passionate few have always determined the course of history.  Always.  The “masses” follow the leader.  That’s how our species, and most others, work.  You want to be among the passionate few?  Then choose to be.  Be a Political Alpha that others can follow.  It’s just another choice.
  3. Politicians hire themselves if you let them; we do NOT have elections to hire politicians.  Our founders and prior generations bequeathed all of us (all races, all creeds, all genders…even the new ones) the hard-won right to vote not as a numb approval of the status quo, but as a weapon of peaceful revolution.  You are SUPPOSED TO vote AGAINST some things (evil, entrenched incumbents, bad choices).  You are SUPPOSED TO vote to FIRE the best candidates, and replace them with the best politicians.
  4. Picture this.  On a single day in November, you upset the status quo.  Instead of reelecting almost everybody (over 98% of House Reps were reelected last time, you know), you fire almost everybody, and replace them with people who’ve not sold you out.  It’s a choice.  Your choice.  Imagine how bright the sun would shine on that next day when the gobsmacked media pundits realize that you figured it out, and won.  Just picture it.

Would it be so scary to, just for once, use your vote more like a sword than a poker chip? Wouldn’t it be invigorating and wholesome to walk into a voting booth with the Spirit of ‘76?lucy-charlie-brown-football

Realistically, we’re all going to die, and our culture and nation will collapse.  It’s a certainty, actually.

But we choose how we live our precious lives.  We don’t have to keep doing the same things over and over again.   While history demonstrates very well that we humans keep screwing up over and over again, we personally don’t have to.

We can choose.

Don’t we want to strive for a really great life in a great country?  I say let’s dream on that, and make it so.

1A candidate is a corporate abstraction consisting of a figurehead, several key executive members, and a bunch of supporting staff all dedicated to winning elections…often as a full-time job for many campaigns, year after year.   A politician is, when done right, an actual, moral, honest-to-goodness human being who’s trying to make politics the noble art of getting along.

Just Say No to war with Iran

Freedom, IN – It’s a quote attributed to pretty much everybody, that “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” The saying is more true and applicable to USA foreign policy than to anything else.

None of our foreign aggressions worked as promised, or even as we’ve been told. Yet we’ve had scarcely a year’s peace since the War to End All War.

And we’ve been getting worse, not better, at finagling foreigners into serving us and our Saudi allies. Does anyone doubt that our interventions in Libya and Syria have been disastrous? Have we really fixed anything in Somalia, Yemen or Pakistan? When will we be done with Iraq? Afghanistan is the USA’s longest war, ever…and we’re losing. What’s the plan? What’s the goal?

We’re sure not fighting for freedom.  Not anybody’s freedom.  And we’re sure not making friends when we blow up their children.

A leaked May 17 memo reveals that the USA government once again intends to replay the same failed script; this time against Iran (again).

The key directive sent to Rex Tillerson is “…that the U.S. should use human rights as a club against its adversaries, like Iran, China and North Korea, while giving a pass to repressive allies like the Philippines, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.”

Let’s think like a human, and not a politician, for a moment.

What actual human beings on the planet would not hate us for our arrogant, armed and deadly games and manipulations? Why wouldn’t we be creating more enemies than friends with such obvious duplicity? Does anybody on this planet think they’re the ones who’re wrong, and deserve death?

Is the Golden Rule really so bad?

I’m no pacifist. I believe in security through strength. And I understand the theory of “Humanitarian Intervention” (though that’s been irrelevant lately, and it certainly doesn’t work in practice!).

But we’re acting like stupid teenage “swatting” and “knockout game” thugs; not at all like rational adult humans. We’re acting as though we can use killing force against others with impunity, when in fact, we’ve been hurting ourselves as much as anybody else.

This is insanity. We’ve got seven “whack-a-mole” wars going on now, and we’re losing our wealth, security, and of course, freedom as a very direct result.

Our armies are protecting the petrodollar and drug trade, not anything We The People should value.

I propose we just say stop the madness, and give Peace, Prosperity, Security and Freedom a chance.

Liberty or Bust!

Andy Horning

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Quit mortgaging our future, dang it!

Freedom, IN – Of course we need to cut taxes.  I’d vote to end income tax entirely.

But we already know this game. Politicians say that “government is too big,” but then make it bigger. They trumpet the need to cut spending, but then spend more.

And, of course, they sometimes cut taxes (just a little) without fixing the first two things; which means that they’ll later raise taxes, and cut promised benefits.

Nobody likes to pay taxes.  But taxes are a symptom, not the disease itself.  The disease is ungoverned, unregulated, out-of-control politics and all the cost and violence that entails.

Every single one of the other 2018 primary election candidates for Indiana’s US Senate seat are promising more government. Every one of the others promise more fear-aggression-syndrome foreign policy, more domestic militarization, more intrusions into our privacy, trade and personal interactions.

I’m the only candidate promising less.

A lot less

I have a plan for Peace, prosperity, Security, Liberty and Justice for ALL, in eight steps.

But the summary is that I mean to cut the corruption, cost, intrusiveness, abusiveness and ineffectiveness of our central government by actually cutting powers, programs, agencies…and people, from that government. I propose establishing a truly federal (instead of our increasingly unitary) government as defined by the authorizing compact.

That is how this is supposed to work. That is still the law, as written and amended.

And I’m the only candidate who’s all about that.

Liberty or Bust!
Andy Horning
Freedom, Indiana

Eight Steps to Success

Here’s how we turn from fatal social disease, toward Peace, prosperity, Security and Freedom in eight steps:

  1. End the cronyism/corruption culture.
  2. Stand down our military-industrial complex and global imperialism, and replace it with strong, constitutional national defense.
  3. Monetary/banking reform.  Click the link for details.
  4. Rule of Law. This would cut a lot of stuff from what we’re calling “government” today. You may not like some of the cuts; but I’m certain you’d like the end result.
  5. No more loaded bills. One subject at a time, and no earmarks/pork.
  6. End special classes, special deals for special people – equality for all at long last.
  7. Sunset provision/amendment to refine and reduce the number of laws so that our rules are:
    1. Few enough to actually know
    2. Simple enough to actually obey
    3. Important enough to enforce without exceptions or special classes
  8. Term Limits.  Let’s face it; voters haven’t been doing their part, and there’s no procedural fix for bad choices.  And I understand term limits won’t happen until after voters make better choices.  That’s why I’m placing this one last both procedurally, and in importance, because we’ll get term limits only after a sufficient number of people wake up and act appropriately such that we fire the bad guys and, at least for the short term, defuse the huge advantage of incumbency…particularly the power of “committee” rulers based on tenure.   …But after that cultural epiphany and revolution, their kids and grandkids will gradually fall asleep again.♣   That’s just how civilizations inevitably decay and die.  If we’re to delay our self-destruction at least a little, we need term limits shorter than human life expectancy…particularly in the context of tenure/corruption-based power structures.

To summarize, I want to cut the cost, intrusiveness, abusiveness and ineffectiveness of our central government by actually cutting powers, programs, agencies…and people, from that government. I mean to establish a truly federal (instead of our increasingly unitary) government as defined by the authorizing compact.

 

♣A good part of my reasoning for term limits is encapsulated in this quote:  “Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times.” ― G. Michael Hopf, Those Who Remain

I believe it takes “strong men” (strong-minded, individualist, non-tribal voters) to fire bums and clean up corruption.  But “weak men” (look around) will let anything go, and continuously reelect bad politicians…or let the whole system collapse.

Horning into GOP race for Indiana US Senate

For Immediate Release

December 7, 2017

Freedom, IN – Americans want options. We have unlimited choices in coffee, shoes, electronics, cell service…everything, in fact, excepting whatever politicians control.

It’s literally a shame that only two political parties can fully participate in our democratic processes. But it’s even more of a shame when both of those two parties offer only one option: more debt, more inflation, more wars, more regulations, and of course more corruption; meaning less peace, prosperity, security and freedom.

The Republican Party’s platform is actually quite good; it’s yet another shame that with a total lock on both federal and state political power, the GOP has been spitting on their own ideals.

Until today, it was hard to find any substantive differences between the Republican Party candidates for the Indiana US Senate seat.

But today, I’m throwing my hat into the ring as a Republican Party candidate for US Senate, and I have a plan to set things right. I am putting peace, prosperity, Rule of Law, real security, and (you know I’m big on this) freedom, on the ballot.

Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end.” – Lord Acton

Liberty or Bust!

Andy Horning

Freedom, Indiana

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