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Personal Thoughts on Scott Baugh’s Run for the 48th Congressional District

Posted by Walter Myers III on March 22, 2018

I am keenly aware this post may ruffle some feathers, but it was a post I felt compelled to write. I am not supporting anyone in particular in the 48th Congressional District, but I am opposing Scott Baugh. A number of years ago during Baugh’s reign as Chairman of the OCGOP in the 2007 timeframe, I was an alternate on the OCGOP Central Committee for former Central Committee member John Wiliams. At the time, I believe the only Black (or African-American for some) persons involved in Central Committee were myself and Emily Sanford. My hope was that the party would recognize the need to get serious about outreach to the growing minority communities in Orange County, or at least be more welcoming.

At a barbecue hosted by John Moorlach one Saturday morning sometime in 2008, I asked Baugh about his thoughts on minority outreach as Orange County was making early moves towards being a purple county instead of continuing to be solidly red as in the past, particularly due to so many Republicans leaving the party to register as “Decline to State” (or DTS). Scott told me clearly that minority outreach was not much of a concern for him because politics had its cycles and even though Orange County may be trending away from the Republican Party, the pendulum would eventually swing the other way.

A couple of years later, in 2011, John Williams resigned from Central Committee due to apparent impropriety in his role as public guardian, for which he was fired by the Board of Supervisors. As John’s long-serving alternate who was active in the party working on minority outreach with then-coordinator Jack Wu, I saw this as an opportunity to be appointed to Central Committee so I could further this work.  This was a vibrant community that was lauded when former and now deceased Tom Fuentes was Chairman, but was only tolerated with Baugh at the helm.

I was given the cold shoulder by Baugh as well as the committee members of my district, with the exception of Todd Spitzer who felt I had value to offer the party. Instead, a person was appointed who had not been involved in or served in the party in the slightest. It was, to say, a low point in my life and a clear repudiation of the party wanting to be inclusive of minorities, at least in my district. I will never forget the disdain exhibited towards me particularly by Marcia Gilchrist and Jon Fleischman. Todd Spitzer later asked me to be his alternate, which I accepted. I am forever grateful for his support at a time when I felt rejected by the party of Lincoln.

After becoming Todd’s alternate, I later took leadership of the OCGOP minority outreach effort as coordinator. With much wrangling with the Executive Committee, I was able to establish an ad hoc committee that was highly active in the minority community, attending many cultural events and establishing a presence the party didn’t have before. I recall working with some truly outstanding people such as Craig Alexander, Deborah Pauly, Cuong Cao, Desare Ferraro, Zonya Townsend, and others. This continued for about a year or so, and then we had the redistricting in 2012 that changed the district maps for California. So I decided at that time to run for Central Committee as a full member.

I learned of a mailer going out for the June primaries that Baugh was directing from someone Baugh had already solicited to join the mailer, asking if I was on it. I replied I knew nothing of the mailer. I informed Baugh that I was interested in running for Central Committee based on my work as an alternate with an active committee reaching out to minority communities, and asked if he would support me by allowing me to participate in the mailer. Scott said he had no involvement in the mailer, which I knew to be false. Again, Scott demonstrated he had no desire to include minorities in the party and had no intentions of growing the party through outreach efforts. For a party that had and continues to have such a bad reputation with minorities, I don’t know why my work would not be a priority for him if his intention was to grow the party. It was becoming increasingly clear to me that I simply wasn’t welcome in the party. Thus, I ceased operations of my committee and divorced myself of all involvement in the party ever since. I am, however, encouraged by the work of the current party Chairman, Fred Whitaker, so perhaps I will reconsider in the future.

What I’m not attempting to do is to call Baugh a racist, but to note what I viewed as an unwelcome attitude, at least towards me. While I am by no means poor and am in the top 5% of earners nationwide in the high tech industry, he didn’t know that and I believe viewed me in a completely different light from someone who is white and known to have considerable financial resources. Many whites, to this day, make false assumptions about blacks and believe we have little to offer. So what I am attempting to show is Baugh’s insensitivity and indifference (which is by no means limited to Baugh) during his days as Chairman of the party, and thus I feel he is the wrong person to represent the 48th Congressional District of California which, while almost 57% white, also has a constituency that is 17% Asian, 21% Hispanic, and 1% Black. In my view, the minority population of the 48th Congressional District will not have an advocate in Scott Baugh.

Posted in 48th Congressional District | 7 Comments »

Orange County Register Shamelessly Becomes PC Word Police with Hammond

Posted by Walter Myers III on May 29, 2016

hammondA few weeks ago when Brian Calle informed readers of the direction of the Orange County Register editorial board, it concerned me that while they would continue to be fiscally conservative, they would take more progressively liberal positions on social issues. Still, I thought their historically libertarian views would be the more powerful driver, so I gave them the benefit of the doubt. I was wrong. The heading in the Sunday, May 29, Opinion section proved this to me with a shocking editorial titled “Gomez for county Board of Education.” Brian Calle and his cohorts turned their backs on OC Board of Education Area 1 incumbent Robert Hammond, endorsing Rebecca “Beckie” Gomez based on Hammond’s use of the word “sodomite” well over two years ago, without any understanding (or caring) of the context in which it was used.

The meaning of the word sodomite is simple. It is a word that refers to someone who engages in sodomy, which is defined by Dictionary.com as 1. “anal or oral copulation with a member of the opposite sex, or 2. “copulation with a member of the same sex.” I spoke with Hammond about his use of the word sodomite, which was in the context of the U.S. Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage as a fundamental constitutional right. Hammond sent out an email to his colleagues, whose subject was not even about sodomy, matter of factly noting that sodomites could now marry in response to the decision. It is the word that he was taught to use in his childhood as a politer alternative to the word gay or queer, which is an accurate description of those who participate in same-sex intercourse, and hardly “inflammatory” as grossly charged by the Register editorial. But the Register editorial board’s stated rationale is that times have changed and Hammond should have known better. I can’t think of a more arbitrary and baseless assertion.

The Register editorial board has now fallen into the liberal progressive trap that people (specifically they and no one else) can simply redefine language as they wish, and what once was a word that carried no derogatory meaning can now simply be declared as such on a whim. Bigots are now being created overnight with breathtaking speed, and the Register has become a willing participant in this madness. So Hammond has now used a word that has been recently determined to denigrate others, and even though the board agrees with him on most issues, and is highly skeptical of Gomez herself, they endorse her out of “hope” instead of solid reason due to the perceived meaning of a single word. For the use of but one word, the editorial board would put our children at risk by endorsing someone they have little reason to trust (particularly regarding charter schools) over someone who has proven himself over and over to be a responsible guardian over the wellbeing of all Orange County students. And that’s not to mention the broader, chilling effect on free speech and freedom of conscience that will flow from this action by the Register editorial board.

My first action after breakfast on Tuesday morning will be to cancel my subscription to the Orange County Register. Good riddance.

Posted in Orange County Board of Education, Uncategorized | 6 Comments »

A Response to James Doti’s Article “A Void of Values Among GOP Candidates” (Immigration)

Posted by Walter Myers III on March 6, 2016

trumpThere James Doti goes again in his Orange County Register article titled A Void of Values Among GOP Candidates. I have great respect for Mr. Doti as President of Chapman University. In just a short time Chapman has become a leading American university in no small part thanks to Mr. Doti’s leadership. But as usual, I vehemently disagree with his positions on immigration, which in my view are unfortunately just as thoughtless as they are wrong. I find it hard to believe a man of such education consistently takes such illogical and ill-considered positions on illegal immigration.

Now to begin, I am not a Trump supporter. I support Ted Cruz. Nonetheless, while I disagree with many of Trump’s antics, I do believe he loves America deeply and that his rise is a response by the Republican base against elected Republicans who cower at every bad word they are called, and who campaign on conservative values but when they get to Washington curiously end up moving forward the fundamental transforming of America by Obama and his fellow Democrats. Republican voters, in a word, feel woefully betrayed by their elected leaders.

To Mr. Doti’s article, and the tasteless, completely false cartoon above it stating that Trump is scapegoating the Mexican people, there is hardly a game of “one-upmanship” with respect to the 11 million illegal immigrants living in America. He notes how illegal immigrants that come here to live, work, and play “have not become naturalized citizens” and further that “illegal” only connotes that they entered our nation “without permission.” It’s hard for me to fathom someone as learned as Mr. Doti having such a simplistic and simple-minded notion that people who have broken the law gives them the right to citizenship, and that anyone who has the mind to can just show up in America “without permission.” Shall we just roll out the red carpet for any and all comers without qualification? We are a sovereign nation that has laws, and if these people want to become citizens, then they can apply for citizenship in the same manner as the millions of people from Mexico and Central America who have come here legally and are still waiting in line. Why do these people deserve less than those who break our laws to come here?

Mr. Doti goes on to accuse Trump of violating the welcoming message of Lady Liberty, yet Trump has done nothing of the sort. Trump has not stated, expressly or implied, that he does not welcome legal immigrants to America. In fact, he has stated he is open to illegal immigrants leaving and subsequently returning through legal means. The wall he proposes is to keep out people who would come here illegally, which includes those who would commit crimes or terrorist acts. And second to that would be to put in place a working legal immigration system. So Mr. Doti is putting words in the mouth of Trump that he hasn’t said. Again, it’s very hard for me to believe a university president could be so careless with his words.

I want to now answer Mr. Doti’s specific questions at the end of his article, which are so easily answered they’re hardly worth asking. First, I think all of the Republican candidates have their respective strengths and weaknesses. I personally think Cruz best represents the party’s values of liberty, equality under the law, personal responsibility, small government, and strong national defense. While I don’t agree with Trump’s view of deportation of illegal immigrants, it is hardly radical, racist, or unwelcoming. The word “illegal” means something and if you are here illegally, you do have human rights, but you have absolutely no claim to either citizenship or acceptance into our society. As to Mr. Doti’s question of a “new birth of freedom for our 11 million fellow Americans”, I couldn’t be more insulted by such a notion. Illegal immigrants are not “fellow Americans.” They have every opportunity and right to use the legal process to become Americans. It is, in my view, an affront to our legal system that Mr. Doti would use such language and I deeply question his commitment to law and order in America. His view is simply unconscionable.

Mr. Doti’s next question asks which candidate has a vision for our nation based on “kindness and inclusivity” rather than “meanness and exclusivity.” Because a candidate believes in upholding our country’s immigration laws does not make that candidate “mean and exclusive,” so Mr. Doti’s view is no different than what I would expect from a Democrat. All of the candidates are welcoming to legal immigrants, and with respect to exclusivity, it is clear you can’t “include” anyone and everyone who would come to America because there are literally seven billion people on the planet. You have to exclude someone. And for any given illegal immigrant that would have instead used the legal immigration system, they would have been afforded the same opportunity to be included as anyone who has afforded themselves of the legal immigration system. To his last question about coming home to the Party of Lincoln, all are welcome to apply legally who would pledge their allegiance to America. It is a privilege, and not a right, and if you violate our country’s laws you should not expect to be rewarded for it no matter how long you have been here.

Posted in National | 3 Comments »

Newport Beach Councilman Scott Peotter Finds “Diversity” is Anything But, Even in Red County

Posted by Walter Myers III on July 15, 2015

PeotterLet’s come right out with the obvious. Scott Peotter expressed his views on same-sex marriage in one of his regular updates as a Newport Beach Councilman. And of course it has caused quite the stir in the Newport Beach Community, to put it mildly. Though sent from a private email account, and sent as a private email, having the City of Newport Beach seal prominently displayed in the email header was probably not the best idea. Recall that we saw the political career of former OCGOP Central Committee member Marilyn Davenport ended over a “racist” depiction of President Obama in a private email sent from a private account, and very few in the Republican Party came to her aid even though all she did was forward a cartoon that had been forwarded thousands of time across the country. Well the climate has only gotten worse and hopefully Scott will not suffer the same fate, because people of good conscience should recognize that while Scott could have made it more clear that his email regarding his view of same-sex marriage was separate and apart from his role as a city councilman, he has every right to express his sincere view without reprisal as there is absolutely no evidence he has discriminated against anyone in functioning as a representative of the city of Newport Beach.

An article in the Daily Pilot by LGBT activist Kevin O’Grady is representative of the view of the LGBT movement, and I think we need to take particular notice with how the “hate” campaign is being waged, which will get a bit philosophical. Specifically, O’Grady makes a moral claim, and in making the moral claim, his logic is that if you don’t believe in his version of morality then you are necessarily, not probably or possibly, but necessarily a bigot, homophobe, or hater. Now O’Grady doesn’t believe, along with his supporters in the comments section, that any religious view has a place in the public square, and certainly not in City Council deliberations. A Christian must check their deeply held beliefs at the door of City Hall, but oddly this doesn’t apply to any other views. O’Grady doesn’t describe, however, why we should accept his particular brand of moral relativism. He simply takes for granted that since he thinks anyone that is against marriage is necessarily a hater, then it is necessarily so based on his own authority. He has no appeal to any objective source. Peotter, on the other hand, appeals to nature’s law, coupled with his belief that it is the God of the Bible that buttresses and supports the natural law providing an objective moral basis, which is entirely in keeping with the spirit of the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the writings of the framers of our founding documents. Peotter can appeal to nature as specifically guiding his view on traditional marriage since only a man and a woman can come together and naturally propagate the species (regardless of intent at any given moment in time), with the nuclear family and complimentarily of man and wife raising children being the centerpiece of society. In a same-sex union, this can only be done by involving a third-party, denying children of their right to a biological mother and father from the very beginning. Promoting any other arrangement, in my view is blatantly selfish towards children.

The tragedy of the same-sex marriage debate as waged by the LGBT activist community is the malicious manner in which it has been executed. Having grown up in the 1960s, I distinctly remember precisely where I was as well as my parents’ reaction to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, I marveled at the love and the graciousness he displayed along with the other civil rights leaders and marchers. In the face of visceral hate, with the threat of death at every turn, Dr. King fought for the civil rights of blacks in America. It was normal leading up to those days for blacks to be beaten and brutally murdered through shootings, beatings, burnings and lynching. We had hoses and dogs turned on us for simply wanting to get a college education. We suffered for almost 400 years. Yet the LGBT activist calls anyone who simply disagrees on same-sex marriage a “hater”? Dr. King never sought to silence anyone. Dr. King never gloated as did the LGBT activist that successfully ended the career of former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich, and he never tried to destroy any person’s livelihood. Yet the LGBT activist community continually attempts to silence opposing views, demonize their “opponents,” and destroy the livelihoods of those who disagree with them. I don’t see any love or grace in that. So I question any moral arguments they make because they are not made from love, but from vengefulness and spitefulness over a definition that is not discriminatory and never has been. The LGBT community has every right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, and there is no hindrance to that whatsoever. Saying that unless everyone agrees with same-sex marriage that this is tantamount to the civil rights struggles of blacks is preposterous. They’re not even gracious in their court-appointed victory. Finally, I don’t know of any Christian or otherwise that believes same-sex couples or any other consenting adults should be denied the rights to legal contractual agreements including matters such as hospital visitation rights, right of survivorship, and estate planning. Christians do believe in love and grace, and thus naturally love homosexuals as fellow human beings knowing that we have all fallen short of the glory of God, but we will not condone or promote behavior that we believe is wrong.

In closing, I think we see that when we hear the term “diversity and inclusion” from the ranks of the LGBT activists and liberal progressives generally, in practice it means something entirely different. Diversity and inclusion, while it sounds positive and forward thinking, is nothing more than code word for the promotion of totalitarian views that seek to not only silence but to also punish dissent. Whereas in the days of old people were silenced through destruction of the physical body, the destruction today is digital, primarily through social media influencing the media and companies led by liberal progressives. By comparison, the old-fashioned way seems almost merciful.

Posted in Newport Beach | 6 Comments »

Post-Election Comments on the Moorlach vs. Wagner Special Election

Posted by Walter Myers III on March 20, 2015

Dalai Lama XIVWell, it looks like it is almost official according to my distinguished colleagues here at OC Political who have been watching intently and reporting on the vote count. John Moorlach will most certainly avoid a run-off and stands to take the oath this Sunday as the newly elected California State Senator from the 37th District. Moorlach ran a positive campaign, according himself with honor and gravitas against withering attacks from Don Wagner (and yes, he did get a little negative towards the end because he was provoked). Wagner was negative out of the gate, and only became more negative as the campaign progressed. His tactics were, in retrospect, clearly unsuccessful as he lost by a 6 point margin. I think both he and his campaign advisers should reflect on their behavior, and hope they will see the Moorlach win was as much about positive feelings for Moorlach’s forthright style and outstanding accomplishments as it was about Wagner displaying petulant behavior unbecoming of someone who claims to carry the conservative banner.

In comments on my last blog, I was taken to task for being naive and not understanding how campaigning is a down and dirty, nasty business. A blood sport, certainly. I have been involved in politics as a conservative activist for over ten years now, working in numerous political action committees to financially support and promote candidates, so I’m hardly naive. I know exactly how campaigns go, and I have no problem with a candidate “digging up dirt” on an opponent, exposing all of their failings and foibles without getting personal (unless their personal behavior demonstrates a serious character flaw). We’re all human and fallible, so you can find something negative about any human being. But there is a definite line that is crossed when candidates make charges that are outright false because they know people won’t bother to check the facts, or so twist the facts it’s hard to determine what is true and what isn’t. Wagner did this on a number of occasions, but it was ineffective because many of those who vote in the 37th District are politically active, discerning, and have seen Moorlach’s sterling record for themselves over the past twenty years. So they were not going to be fooled. Whereas before the election, you would find few who didn’t have a favorable disposition towards Wagner, afterwards there was an increasing number who saw a side of Wagner they never expected, and were naturally disappointed. Had Wagner simply elected to run on his great record, providing truthful, reasonable criticisms of Moorlach, he could have possibly prevailed.

Now the problem with Wagner’s approach to this campaign, and some of the other “dirty” campaigns I have seen over the years, is that some feel when it comes to campaigning, the conservative principles and values they say they espouse no longer apply. You do whatever it takes to win, and then when you’re done we’re all friends again. It reminds me of the Ethan Hawke movie The Purge. In this future, dystopian, totalitarian world, one night a year is designated “The Purge” where all crime is legal from 7 p.m. at night to 7 a.m. the next morning. Ostensibly, the purge results in a strong economy with low crime and unemployment due to its cathartic effect, but in reality it’s just a mechanism for artificial population control. The family of the character played by Hawke is under murderous attack by their next door neighbors, who are unsuccessful at killing his family but attempt to revert back to the way things were when the clock strikes 7 a.m. Clearly, we’re not that far along as a society, but I think you get the point. Things don’t necessarily go back to the way they were because for a time the rules of decorum, honesty, and civility are temporarily lifted.

What I am arguing is simply that if you are a conservative who says you sincerely believe in God, love, mercy, brotherhood, and objective truth, except these have no place when it comes to campaigning, then more than likely much of the real person is who we see in the campaign. When the pressure is on and there is something significant to be lost or gained, that’s when we see who you truly are, not when you’re out giving a speech, participating in a community event, or raising money. What we want be assured of is that the things of which you do and speak come from your very soul, and that we see them consistently displayed, especially in the heat of political battle. It is not my expectation that this little post will have a significant impact on campaigns moving forward, but I do hope it will cause candidates to give a little pause before they compromise their core principles or allow others to influence them to do so. And thus, I will close with a quote by the Dalai Lama XIV: “Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.”

Posted in 37th Senate District | 23 Comments »

Don Wagner Continues His Negativity and False Allegations Against Moorlach

Posted by Walter Myers III on March 9, 2015

Wagner Hit Piece on MoorlachSportscaster Heywood Broun coined the well-known phrase, “Sports do not build character. They reveal it.” I believe this also applies to the “sport” (or rather blood sport) of politics. I have always supported Assemblyman Don Wagner, and saw him as a noble man of high character. Unfortunately, I’m not seeing that man in his campaign for State Senate, but the opposite. I don’t know if it is his campaign advisers that are goading him into an attempt to destroy the excellent character of his opponent John Moorlach, but even if that is the case, Wagner is accepting that advice and acting on it. He is conducting a vicious, public employee union fueled campaign in a number of ways that I won’t detail here, but what I do want to address is his latest charge (per the clickable graphic to the left) that Moorlach supports amnesty for illegal immigrants based on an Orange County Register article dated February 22, 2013 (note the date on the document is February 24, 2013, but that only reflects the difference between digital vs. print dates). Presumably, Wagner is referring to the following excerpt from the article:

“Moorlach, who emigrated as a child with his parents from the Netherlands to Orange County, said it’s not time yet to discuss his views on issues such as immigration, as that would imply he’s made up his mind to run. However, he said, ‘I prefer some of the proposals that have been proffered by the Lincoln Club and Sen. Marco Rubio.’

Last year, the Lincoln Club adopted a policy statement on immigration reform that would allow undocumented immigrants to transition to guest-worker status and a pathway to legal residency, not citizenship.”

Note that the article clearly states the Lincoln Club policy Moorlach supports promotes a pathway to legal residency, and not citizenship. As a board member of the Lincoln Club and a proud contributor to the Lincoln Club immigration policy statement, I can affirm our position is that illegal immigrants are not entitled to citizenship because they broke the law coming to this country and should not be rewarded for conscious and willful lawbreaking, regardless of the reasons. However, our policy statement does extend some grace to those who have immigrated illegally and have been here for a long period of time, but only after our borders are secured so we won’t have the same problem in the future. The worst part of this subterfuge by Wagner is that a number of members of the Lincoln Club have had extensive conversations with Wagner on the Lincoln Club immigration policy during and after its crafting, which he himself has said he supports. He has told me himself that he supports it and he stated the same when speaking at a recent Lincoln Club meeting. So to use an article against Moorlach that doesn’t even support his baseless charge, and to then say that Moorlach supports amnesty based on the same policy that he supports himself, there is most definitely the smell of desperation in his campaign.

As if it couldn’t get any worse, this communication in favor of Wagner that is purportedly from the Conservative Republicans of California, Orange County, is actually not sanctioned by this group. I have learned conclusively that Wagner’s campaign produced this piece, so Wagner is wholly responsible for sending out a hit piece with false charges under the banner of a conservative political group with the express intent to deceive the public. So personally, I am done with Don Wagner, and believe me it does hurt me to say this. Wagner is the perfect example of what happens to well-intentioned people who go to Sacramento, and once they get a taste of power they begin to lust after it, and will do anything to keep it. All of the conservative principles he says that he espouses, those of character, dignity, and truthfulness, have gone by the wayside because being a State Senator trumps all of the values that he promised to cling to while in public service. It truly is a sad day in Orange County that Wagner has resorted to such tricks over a political seat. As the Bible says, what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul?

Posted in 37th Senate District | 27 Comments »

What Poor Black and Latino Families Can Learn from New OC Supervisor Andrew Do

Posted by Walter Myers III on February 12, 2015

Andrew_Do_HeadshotThis morning Andrew Do, newly elected member to District 1 of the Orange County Board of Supervisors (pending completion of a recount), told a compelling story to the Lincoln Club of Orange County of how his family was whisked out of Saigon in the dark of night back in 1975 after the fall of Vietnam to communism. Andrew related how his family was allowed to leave with the clothes on their backs and only two small bags. Just imagine having to decide what are your most prized possessions in only a couple of hours. For most people this would be very difficult, given our propensity to collect more and more things in this wealthy society. But for Andrew’s father, the choice was clear. Their most prized possessions were… four dictionaries. Yes, dictionaries. Andrew’s father reasoned that moving to a new world as an Asian immigrant required knowledge and education, and it was this example of this key priority set by his father that left an indelible impression on him. Young Andrew went on to use his knowledge to build a successful career as an attorney, and most recently was former District 1 supervisor Janet Nguyen’s Chief of Staff (whose seat he just won after she moved on to state assembly).

When Andrew’s family settled in the United States, they were given food stamps. One day when Andrew’s father used food stamps, not really knowing what they were, he noticed that people looked upon him with disrespect. Upon discovering that food stamps were a form of welfare, Andrew’s father refused to use food stamps any further, declaring that his home would work for everything they had and would not accept a victim mentality as new immigrants in America. Wow, if only illegal immigrants in America, who admittedly are hard workers, refused to accept benefits that they did not rightfully earn. Andrew’s father knew this was a trap, teaching his children to depend on themselves and to use their knowledge and hard work to move forward in their lives. Another key point Andrew made in his speech was that even though his supervisor district is over 20% Vietnamese, it was by no means a slam dunk because other Vietnamese candidates were running as well who split the vote. What he relied on was the appeal of Republican values that focus on limited government, maximum liberty, and creating a business environment where people can pursue and realize their dreams based on their own hard work and ingenuity. Indeed, that’s why his message resonated with his constituency and of course, with the Lincoln Club. That is precisely what we are about and we celebrate for all no matter your background.

And this leads me to the title of this little post. Of course it was difficult for immigrant Asian families to succeed back in the 1970s in a far less accepting society than it is now. And yes, back then blacks were accepted no better after centuries of slavery and Jim Crow. Yet in 1975, blacks did have equal access to education for the most part, as I can attest to growing up in the south in Virginia. I was only a couple of years older than Andrew, and my parents always told me that an education was my ticket to a successful life, and that the worst for blacks was behind us so with hard work and determination I could succeed at whatever I set out to do. So Andrew’s parents were right, and so were mine. And there Andrew and I sat in that meeting today whereas we both probably looked wistfully into the future back in 1975. Four decades later, a recent statistic from the U.S. Census Bureau shows the nuclear family in America at near meltdown, with one in five children living on food stamps, and only 17% of black teens living with their nuclear family. Even in white families, we see an all time low of 54%. But when it comes to minority communities, these levels represent a needless tragedy. The lack of two parent homes and a lack of emphasis on education has consigned too many minority children to poverty and a future devoid of success. My only hope is that there will be a renaissance in these downtrodden communities, and obviously a renewed emphasis on education is in order. We can learn a lot from Andrew Do’s experience, and we must carry that message of hope into minority communities who have far more opportunity than in 1975.

Posted in 1st Supervisorial District | 5 Comments »

Don Wagner, Please Go Positive

Posted by Walter Myers III on January 22, 2015

120213 Don WagnerYesterday I received an announcement from Don Wagner regarding his run for the 37th Senate District (my district). As I have written before, I think Don is an outstanding candidate, but I wanted this to be a race instead of a coronation because when it is a race we learn a lot more about what a candidate thinks and what that candidate will probably do if they win. For his “opening volley” (so to speak), Don starts off strong telling us about his experience on two fiscal committees, his business experience, and his commitment to continue bringing no-nonsense conservative, pro-growth ideas to the state legislature. These are excellent qualifications. But then he goes negative with the following comment about his opponent, former Orange County Supervisor John Moorlach. Specifically, Don has the following to say about Moorlach:

“My opponent is a termed out, formerly full time politico since the days of the first Clinton Administration with nothing to do but campaign in the district. Meanwhile, I am busy working for our district in Sacramento.”

Don, you know how much I love and respect you as my Assemblyman, but there is no good reason I can think of to do this. First, it is immaterial that Moorlach is termed out and it has no bearing on his qualifications for State Senate. Also, the fact that he has been working full-time in government since the Clinton administration is not a disqualifying attribute either. While I’m not terribly excited about people who become “career politicians,” I am far more concerned with how they govern rather than how long they have been in government. I will take a politician with a long tenure of service who wisely and judiciously spends my money over someone who has served one term and is reckless with it. If there is anyone who has proven that he is fiscally sound and a defender of the taxpayer, it is John Moorlach. Finally, Moorlach has been busy working for Orange County up until terming out, so you’re both even on that count.

What I expected to hear, and hope I will hear moving forward, is less about Moorlach that has nothing to do with his policies and positions, more details on why your policies or positions are superior to his, why you specifically want to run for the Senate, and what you plan to accomplish if you are chosen to represent us. In other words, I want details, and I would like to see a positive campaign. Please take this to heart and simply let us know why we should vote for you over Moorlach.

Posted in 37th Senate District | 9 Comments »

Government and the Biggest Failures in Life

Posted by Walter Myers III on January 21, 2015

Occupy HomelessWhen I was a kid, I had an aunt who used to admonish me when I spoke without thinking that it is better to be quiet and thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. It took me a while to take that to heart, so hopefully these days I have learned the truth of that long ago childhood teaching lesson. A few weeks ago one of my liberal Facebook “friends” posted a graphic created by the Occupy Wall Street movement criticizing the federal government for “millionaire representatives” cutting food stamps while homeless people froze to death on the streets of Washington, D.C. I don’t see the relationship between food stamps and dying on the street homeless, but then again my expectations of the cogency of Occupy movement communications are very low. Nonetheless, I want to address this charge because it is instructive to understand how liberal progressives think and to marvel that a group of people who are so devoid of responsibility have no problem criticizing others for what is their own responsibility.

Last I checked, Washington D.C. had shelters (church-sponsored or otherwise), private charities, a City Council, and of course members of the Occupy movement. But in the graphic, they didn’t call on any of these parties to do anything about helping the homeless in their own community. Obviously, the local community would have been the first line of support to provide shelter and food to the homeless, or at least could have contributed to shelters and private charities that provide these services. Where were these people? Next, the Washington D.C. City Council, which is made up of Democrats who supposedly care the most about “the little guy” could themselves have sponsored shelters for the homeless. It doesn’t appear they cared either that people were dying in the streets. And then we have the Occupy members. What were they doing in Washington, D.C. to help the homeless and the hungry? Well, I think we know what they were doing. Sitting in comfy pajamas in their parents’ basements mining liberal blogs for the latest “outrage” committed by Republicans in the U.S. Congress, instead of expending their energies in actually making a difference.

And this is where I come to the title of this blog about the biggest failures in life. The biggest failures in life (at least in my view) are those who feel they are taking the moral high ground by criticizing others for first, what is their own responsibility that they won’t accept, and second, what is not the responsibility of the party they’re criticizing in the first place. In this case, Occupy does not understand that charity is not the function of the federal government to begin with, yet it has for decades taken money away from the states that could be distributed far more effectively and efficiently at the local level. This practice is rife with bureaucracy and waste, and even worse, when they dole money back out to the states they shouldn’t have taken to begin with, they often use the threat of cutting off federal funds to coerce states into doing their bidding on some political matter. Despite that, if people are dying on the streets in Washington, D.C., it is still the local community and government officials that have utterly failed their own people since it is they who have full visibility into the point of need, unlike a far flung federal government. And that community includes the Occupy members who, instead of looking to themselves along with their community and local government, attempt to pass the blame off on a federal government that has no idea who is homeless or where they are on the streets of D.C.

To speak of this more generally, the responsibility to feed the hungry and provide shelter to the homeless is first the family, then the church or private charities, then local/county government. The state level would be the natural next level, but it is my belief that if charity has to bubble up to the state level, then the local community has failed at the most basic level of society. This view is based on the Catholic principle of subsidiarity that holds nothing should be done by a larger and more complex organization that can be done just as well by a smaller and simple organization. So even though I’m particularly critical of the Occupy movement in this post, it also sheds the light on the rest of us who have failed if we expect anyone other than ourselves in the local community to meet the needs of those truly in need. Personally, a good percentage of my charitable contributions go to the Orange County Rescue Mission, which among other free health services provides transitional housing and job training to the homeless, helping them to get back on their feet and become productive, self-sufficient citizens without government welfare programs. So I ask the Occupy movement to stop complaining about what politicians are doing and act at the local level wherever they may live, and get all of their other progressive liberal friends who complain about “income inequality” to accept responsibility and follow suit. As for those of us of a conservative bent, we know better and have no excuse for not volunteering or supporting churches and charities in our own communities monetarily.

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On Immigration Reform and Don Wagner’s Run for State Senate 37th District

Posted by Walter Myers III on November 25, 2014

120213 Don WagnerAs expected, Don Wagner announced his run for the 37th District State Senate vacated by Mimi Walters, who will be headed to Congress representing the 45th Congressional District. For the record, I do support Wagner. Wagner is a principled, stand up conservative, and he has always made himself readily available to myself and others who have wanted to learn about what he’s up to in the California State Assembly and discuss issues that concern us here in Irvine and surrounding areas. Certainly, I don’t expect this to be a coronation, and do expect that there will be a quality candidate to run against Wagner, but out of the gate there are already rumblings about a letter he signed along with other California state Republican legislators urging U.S. Congressmen from California to support “comprehensive” federal immigration reform. Personally, I was a bit stung by the letter, as it appears to me to play right into the hands of Democrats.

In the letter, Wagner et al. called for “thoughtful and strong border security, employer sanctions, and opportunity for undocumented residents to earn their full way to citizenship, but only behind those who have applied to become citizens through the current citizenship process.” I do believe this is somewhat reasonable, in theory, with the key exception that undocumented residents earn their full way to citizenship. There should be a price to pay for coming to this country illegally even if grace is applied, and if a bill were to pass with that clause implemented, it would be tantamount to declaring to all future illegal immigrants that if you get here and hang out long enough, you too can expect eventual citizenship. It may take a long time, but if you can avoid deportation, which has become easier and easier, it will have been worth it to go the illegal route instead of going the legal route and waiting your turn. Effectively, it would make legal immigration less attractive for those who felt they simply couldn’t afford to wait, and would be the proverbial slap in the face to those waiting to enter the country legally.

I can’t say I know Wagner’s intentions directly, but from some correspondence with him on immigration in general, I know that Wagner understands how hobbled the Republican Party has been, particularly here in California, by not actively pursuing and passing immigration reform legislation. There is little the Republicans can do here in California as they don’t have the governorship and are a distinct minority in both state houses, but there did appear to be a chance at bipartisan legislation in the U.S. Senate and House and perhaps Wagner et al. saw this as an opportunity to take illegal immigration off the table that focuses first on border security, then on employer sanctions, and finally on handling the illegal immigrants currently here (and hopefully in that order!). I think a key mistake Wagner makes is actually believing that comprehensive immigration reform is workable. There were supposed to be border protections in the 1986 amnesty bill signed by Reagan, but we all know that didn’t happen and now we have north of 12 million illegal immigrants in this country. So passing a comprehensive bill and expecting that it will be ordered in the manner as stated above, I think, is being highly unrealistic (okay, naive, with Obama, Pelosi, and Reid running things on the Democratic side).

For one, I am tired of huge, thousand page bills, and think we need to get away from “comprehensive” anything. What we need are smaller, simpler bills that can be read and understood by the average American. For an issue as huge as immigration reform, what we need is a broad framework that consists of border security, a functioning guest worker program that makes it foolish to immigrate here illegally in the first place, a way to legalize current illegal immigrants without providing for citizenship, and finally employer enforcement. Of course, this is the Orange County Lincoln Club position that I have been advocating for years. I believe this can be accomplished in a series of small bills that must be executed in a particular sequence that ensures we’re not back in the same situation we’re in now ten years later. My hope is that Wagner will further consider this and address it sooner than later, but I don’t think the letter should necessarily disqualify him in anyone’s mind who is considering reserving their vote for a single (though important) discretion. I wish Wagner well in his run, but I think he could be vulnerable on this issue if another candidate as excellent as him comes forward with a view more in line with the conservative base that sees Wagner as an amnesty supporter.

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