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This world is one big game of "Go"-- Black against White, Light against Darkness --and we all have a choice to make: Do we war FOR the Light?

...or against it?

Campaign for Children & Family: Presidential Report Card

Let the record show that John McCain and Barack Obama are polar opposites on partial-birth abortion, parental notification of abortion, marriage protection on the ballot, homosexual indoctrination of schoolchildren, gay adoptions, gun-owner rights, activist judges, and raising taxes. No one should base their vote on personality or mere feelings. Our carefully-researched report card shows you exactly where Obama and McCain stand on issues of importance to voters, their families, and our nation's future."

--Randy Thomasson, president of Campaign for Children and Families.

View the Report Card here

posted by Eric @ 4:32 PM,


On August 28, 2008 at 10:15 AM, Anonymous BenT - the Unbeliever said...

If those are the only issues that are important to you then, here's your pre-marked voting card. Of course if you're concerned about education, food safety, labor law, health care, home ownership, female wage equality or diplomatic relations your choice is a little more difficult.

On August 28, 2008 at 11:40 AM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

...the environment, energy policy, peak oil, corporate welfare, waste and fraud in gov't, better representation at governmental levels, ethics in our elected representatives, our failing infrastructure and the fact that there's not enough money to meet our needs, homelessness, increasing numbers of homeless families and children, homeless veterans, supporting wounded veterans and their families, increasing concerns about access to clean water...

On August 28, 2008 at 1:26 PM, Blogger ELAshley said...

You no doubt see your list, Dan, as moral issues. What surprises me is that you don't find the others equally moral.

On August 28, 2008 at 1:39 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

They're all moral issues in one way or the other. I didn't intend to suggest otherwise. I was just agreeing with Ben that they are not the ONLY moral issues involved in this election.

I am strongly opposed to those gays out there indoctrinating school children with their mind control methods in each and every case where that happens....

Exactly WHERE has that happened, by the way? Are they using some sneaky tricks to "make them gay"? That would be contemptible and I would be opposed to such attempts.

I don't believe it's happening anywhere in the real universe, but I would be opposed to it if it were.

I support parental notification of abortions, and of any other medical treatment a child might seek out. Parents ought to be involved in any such decisions unless perhaps the parent is unfit for some reason, in which case, I believe current law already allows for a judge to intervene.

I DO FULLY support adoption as a great thing and find it morally reprehensible that some would try to keep folk from adopting - whether they're straight or gay. Shame on them!

I support reasonable gun rights and reasonable gun restrictions.

I am opposed to activist judges.

I am opposed to unnecessary raising of taxes (such as for a morally reprehensibly large military) and support reasonable taxation. Like you, in that regards.

Yes, these are all moral issues and we ought not vote on a candidate based on one or two of these moral issues, but rather, we ought to be informed about as many as possible.

On August 28, 2008 at 1:44 PM, Anonymous Bubba said...

First, even supposing that "ethics in our elected representatives" is as important a moral issue as whether we protect infant survivors of abortion from being left in a janitor's closet to die, I'm not sure that concern for the former means that Obama is the obvious choice. Beyond his associations with the convicted criminal Rezko, there is the question of his association with an admitted and unrepetant terrorist and even his campaign's attempt to smear Stanley Kurtz for investigating that association.

As much as I strongly disagree with McCain on immigration, cap-and-trade, and campaign finance "reform," I do not believe a persuasive case has been made that Barack Obama is a more ethical politican. On the contrary, I believe it's becoming increasingly clear that he's a product of the corrupt Chicago political machine, a man who has had no problem associating with criminals, race-baiters, and even domestic terrorists.

Second, I find Dan's claims to oppose judicial activism and support reasonable taxation to be dubious, to say the least.

On August 28, 2008 at 1:53 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

And I find your dubious suspicions wholly boring.

As much as you appear to enjoy hanging on to my coattails, brother Bubba, you don't know me as well as I do.

On August 28, 2008 at 2:33 PM, Anonymous Bubba said...

Coattails, nothing, I'm just tired of your disingenuousness. I understand it would be far easier for you to score rhetorical points if your every comment was made in a vaccuum: you wouldn't have to deal with people dredging up inconvenient comments you've made in the past. But it's not my fault that your fundamental flaws are so easy to bring to light.

You're making a habit of telling me, "you don't know me as well as I do."

First, you clearly don't know the Constitution as well as I do, but that never stopped you from pontificating from your position of relative ignorance.

But, more importantly, you often assert that I don't understand you, but you rarely demonstrate that claim. When you have tried to substantiate the claim, you end up making the most bizarre appeals, going so far as to argue, quite unconvincingly, that accusing us of "making a racist statement" isn't accusing us of racism, even when you're quite happy to invoke the imagery of lynching and cross-burning. You resorted to hair-splitting when you yourself routinely misconstrued what we wrote, and when you vacillated over whether you were appealing to the strictist possible definition of racism.

You rarely demonstrate precisely how I misunderstand you, and, when you try, the attempt is usually quite lame.

What's most likely is that your problem with me is that I know you entirely too well. You probably wish I hadn't spent so much time over the last few months arguing with you; truth be told, so do I. But since I understand you -- specifically, how you hypocritically invoke all sorts of principles you really don't believe, all to hide your political radicalism and convince others (and perhaps yourself) of your fealty to Scripture and prudence -- I'm not going to discard what I know just to maintain the facade that you're more honest than you are.

On August 28, 2008 at 3:10 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

You rarely demonstrate precisely how I misunderstand you

Rarely? That feels like what I've spent half of my blogging time on this last year.

But to stay in the ballpark of being on topic, let's deal with your suppositions about what I've said here today.

You said:

I find Dan's claims to oppose judicial activism... to be dubious

And yet, it is true. I AM opposed to judges making politically-based judgments as opposed to ones based on law. I do not believe this is a topic I've ever really addressed anywhere, so I don't know that you have much reason to find it dubious.

Not being a legal expert, I've rarely if ever commented on the topic, but that would be my off-the-cuff position: I am opposed to judicial activism. I know my opinion and that is it. I don't know what you expect me to say to convince you of the topic, since, as far as I can recall, I've never discussed it, but there you go, the facts about my opinion, for what it's worth.

Bubba also said:

I find Dan's claims to... support reasonable taxation to be dubious

Now, on THIS topic, I have offered opinions before. I DO support reasonable taxation, as do probably all of us here. No one (hardly) wants to live in a society with no roads, no police force or fire departments, for instance and most of us think it reasonable to pay for common needs via common taxation.

I don't believe there is a problem there. We're all in agreement.

Our disagreement comes down to what is "reasonable taxation" and what is "reasonable common needs," I believe. And that is a matter we could all discuss - and we have in various places.

Still, it is not a matter that I don't believe in reasonable taxation, so I don't know why you'd find my claim to be dubious. You may think that the things I find reasonable are dubious, but not the claim that I find taxation reasonable.

Your comment does not make much sense from where I sit. No disingenuous-ness, just disagreement.

On August 28, 2008 at 3:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen to that, Bubba. mom2

On August 28, 2008 at 3:55 PM, Anonymous Bubba said...

Okay, Dan, I will concede that you don't think your own positions regarding taxation are unreasonable. The statement is practically tautological for pretty much anyone, but just because you think your ideas regarding taxation are reasonable, it doesn't follow that that's actually the case.

I remain dubious that it's reasonable, and your latest comment gives me at least one reason why: your appeal to meeting "reasonable common needs," when I believe that you advocate social welfare programs. I believe your position is that these programs would have benefits that would accrue to society at-large, but the fact remains that you advocate using revenues from taxes to address directly the needs of individuals in addition to truly common needs like infrastructure and national defense.

(I will remind you that national defense is an enumerated power of our federal government, and social welfare isn't. I will also reiterate that national defense is a genuine common need, and social welfare isn't. Yet defense spending is just about the only sort of spending that you routinely criticize as excessive: even for subsidies, you're less concerned about the amount being doled out and more concerned with who has the best seat around the cannibal pot.)

The second reason just in this thread that I'm dubious you support reasonable tax rates is your assertion of "the fact that there's not enough money to meet our needs."

It's not clear what precisely you mean by that; maybe you absurdly advocate inflationary monetary policies. But the most reasonable conclusion is that you think the government doesn't tax enough.

Our government taxes over 25% of our GDP, which results in revenue exceeding THREE TRILLION DOLLARS EACH YEAR.

If you don't think that's enough, you don't support "reasonable" taxation in a sense that would be understood by any classical liberal.

And, about judicial activism, our lengthy discussion on the Constitution makes clear that, quite absurdly, you reject the notion that the federal government is limited to its enumerated powers.

You write, "I AM opposed to judges making politically-based judgments as opposed to ones based on law," but the statement is largely meaningless in light of your belief that the law doesn't actually limit the government to its enumerated powers.

You think judges should rule according to the law, but you think the supreme law of the land is open-ended in terms of what Congress can do.

In light of your indefensible beliefs regarding the "welfare clause," I believe that your opposition to judicial activism is, in practice, largely meaningless.

I'm skeptical that a person who supports social welfare programs genuinely supports reasonable taxation, because I don't think reasonable tax rates can support the welfare state he advocates. I'm doubly skeptical of such a person when he seemingly criticizes as too low, the taxation of 25-30% of GDP.

And, I'm skeptical that a person who denies the constitutional limits on Congress to its enumerated powers truly opposes judicial activism in any meaningful sense, because he almost certainly wants judges to affirm an understanding of the Constitution that is -- as we have seen -- wholly unjustifiable.

On August 28, 2008 at 4:45 PM, Anonymous Bubba said...

My skepticism at Dan's supposed commitment to limited government instincts isn't the only thing I brought up in that first comment.

Perhaps we could go deeper into discussing the ethical standards that Barack Obama would bring to the White House. Obama falsely accused a group of lying for accurately portraying his opposition to the Born Alive legislation in Illinois. His campaign is trying to have the State Department prosecute a political group for running accurate ads about his association with a known and unrepentant domestic terrorist. And, his campaign is now trying to smear Stanley Kurtz for investigating his relationship with William Ayers.

(And that's only limiting the discussion to the post-primary campaign season; we haven't even touched the subject of Obama and Rezko.)

Yes, let's please bring the discussion back to Obama and ethics. That should be fun.

On August 28, 2008 at 7:47 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

You really want to bring up ethics?

Mr. Keating Five?

Mr. Leave my disfigured wife to have an affair and then marry a younger blonde socialite?

The same wife with the drug addiction?

The same wife who had a physician write illegal prescriptions?

Who perhaps had an employee fired for discovering her drug addiction?

Now, that is not to pick on someone with a drug addiction, but I'm saying that Obama is clean. He has some allegations and aspersions that have been cast his way but nothing that has stuck.

That he knows people of dubious reputations does not indicate that he supports their possibly illicit behavior. Jesus, after all, supped with the sinners. If we're going to accuse Obama of questionable behavior because he talked with sinners, then you'd have to accuse Jesus of the same.

I think for the most part, McCain IS an honorable man (his shameful behavior with his first wife notwithstanding). But let's not cast mud against Obama when you've got nothing but rumor and innuendo.

We're adults here.

On August 28, 2008 at 7:52 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

And, to any visitors here who may be normal people who are not familiar with Bubba's MO, he has this thing where he likes to go around, telling me what I think, that he knows better than I do what my opinions and positions are.

Even though I've corrected him repeatedly and asked him not to assume that when I say "X" that I must also mean "Y and possibly Z." He has a track record of reading between the lines of what I have said and being totally and factually incorrect about what I think. I know this to be true because, well, it's MY thoughts and opinions we're talking about.

I'm not so sure that he is a habitual liar and slanderer, but rather he appears to have deluded himself into thinking that he knows what I think better than I do.

I promise to try to not talk with him when he's in that mode of telling me what I think. It's just been proven to not be of much benefit, as he just twists my new explanations to mean something that I didn't say.

Let's be kind and send our prayers and good thoughts his way.

On August 28, 2008 at 9:46 PM, Blogger ELAshley said...

To any visitors here who may be normal people who are not familiar with Dan's MO...

How can you as a Christian vote for a man who refused to vote in favor of treating, with the intent to save the life of, a child who manages by the grace of God to survive an act of attempted murder against him?

How can you support a man who's desired policy changes and programs would result in far more taxation than this economy, let alone those forced to pay it, can take? With Barack in the White House and a Democratic controlled Congress, we will see immoral taxation, inflation, misery, high gas prices, and foreign leaders who'll find no reason to fear repercussions for whatever evil they choose to engage in... Clinton boasted about Somalia last night but failed to relate how we tucked tail and ran after Mogadishu... He boasted about America loosing what we could have won. He failed also to relate the fact that he could have had Osama BEFORE 9/11... He could have stopped 9/11.

You want ethics?

Tony Rezko?
Louis Farrakhan?
Jeremiah Wright?
William Ayers?
"America is a downright mean country"?
"For the first time in my adult life..."?
Intimidation of media outlets who air commercials that criticize the Lord Barack Hussein Obama?

Considering that last one, is Freedom of Speech safe under an Obama presidency?

You and every other fool so willing to vote for change do so wholly ignorant of the quality of change Obama both represents, and promises.

Obama claims to have been greatly influenced by Saul Alinsky who wrote, among other works, Rules for Radicals. In that book Alinsky writes his own forward...

"From all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins – or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom – Lucifer."

This is a man Barack claims he was greatly influenced by. Hillary too. Barack considered Wright his spiritual mentor. He got a sweet-heart deal on a home from convicted felon Rezko. He's friends with an unrepentant terrorist.

And you want me and others to believe that McCain is the greater evil?

Do you have ANY spiritual discernment? Don't answer that, it was rhetorical.

On August 28, 2008 at 10:19 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

I, too, have been influenced by Alinsky, Brother Eric. One need not agree with every statement that a person makes to learn something from them.

I learn stuff from you, for instance, at times. Doesn't mean I agree with everything you say.

How can you as a Christian vote for a man who refused to vote in favor of treating, with the intent to save the life of, a child who manages by the grace of God to survive an act of attempted murder against him?

Eric, you and I view abortion differently. We don't think of it the same. Just as you and I view war differently.

I don't think it is the only issue one ought to base a vote upon. And I don't agree that it should be outlawed, as you do.

THAT is how I can vote for Obama. THAT is how I can vote against McCain. I could easily ask you, "HOW can you as a Christian vote for someone who'd support torture? How can you support someone who'd support invading a nation unprovoked? How can you ..." and continue in that vein.

But the truth is that there are multiple issues and Christians and Americans of good faith don't all agree on what has priority and how to interpret various ethical questions.

Yes, I believe that McCain is CLEARLY and ABUNDANTLY so the worst choice. I believe Obama is clearly the better choice. Not a perfect choice. Not a perfect man.

But our nation is wallowing in an ethical, practical and moral morass after eight years of Bush policy and we CAN'T afford to continue down that road any longer. We've made grave mistakes and we need to begin to correct them. Responsibility and moral reckoning demand it.

On August 28, 2008 at 10:25 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

Eric cited Alinsky:

the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom – Lucifer.

I might remind you of another fella who used his position of authority to take money that did not belong to him, make shady deals to fatten his own nest - the Bible usually refers to him as the Shrewd Manager.

Jesus says, "The master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly."

Alinsky isn't "praising Satan," as you seem to be concerned about. Rather, he's using the story to illustrate a point. Just as Jesus was not praising dishonesty, but rather used the story to make a point.

We who are interested in influencing just governmental policy can learn a lot from Saul Alinsky.

On August 28, 2008 at 10:29 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

Eric, you said:

You want ethics?

Tony Rezko?
Louis Farrakhan?
Jeremiah Wright?
William Ayers?

And you mention those names.

What you DIDN'T do was provide any evidence that Obama had anything unethical to do with Rezko, Farrakhan and Ayers.

As to Wright, I get that you don't like the Reverend, but there's nothing unethical or criminal with Obama having a mentor that you disapprove of.

We were talking ethics, not personal preference in preachers.

I probably wouldn't like McCain's pastor (or does he even go to church), but that does not mean that McCain is unethical because he does like his pastor - even if his pastor made some stupid statements.

To throw those names out there like that is a way of trying to tie Obama to unethical behavior, but then you have no support for such a claim. In that case, it just becomes slander. You ought not do that.

On August 28, 2008 at 10:31 PM, Blogger Dan Trabue said...

That sort of behavior, Eric (as you should know), is unethical.

You criticize that which you embrace, friend.

On August 29, 2008 at 1:17 AM, Blogger Marshall Art said...

Barry's association with those losers is more a matter of judgement than ethics, though he definitely worked with Rezko to get his house (someone said McCain's response to the question of how many houses should have been, "At least I paid for them", though I think they're more his wife's properties)and he used his "community activism" to get tax dollars for Rezko for developments that never really were developed as advertised, to the detriment of the needy people Obama claims to champion. He donated thousands and was personal friends with the race-baiter Wright. And his political career was said to have been launched in the home of Ayers, of whom Barry says through Axlerod that they had a "friendly relationship". Helping to launch a political career is merely a "friendly relationship"? Seems a bit deeper than, "Hey, howya doin'!"

Aside from Obama's stupid economic proposals and his support for preserving the "right" to kill the unborn without restrictions, his associations are more than questionable.

On August 29, 2008 at 7:10 AM, Anonymous Bubba said...


First, what I detailed about how Obama and ethics is certainly not "nothing but rumor and innuendo." His and his campaign's behavior is well documented, regarding his admitted lie about the group accurately reporting his voting on the Born Alive act, his campaign's attempt to have a political group prosecuted, and his campaign's attempt to smear Stanley Kurtz. They're all in the very recent public record, and I'd be happy to go over them if I think it necessary, but it seems clear that you're not overly interested.

For that matter, all these things bear directly on Obama's political life. In response you largely focus on drug problems in the McCain family -- and I'll remind you that Obama's admitted to some pretty hard drug use himself -- but my evidence didn't address the candidate's private life.

Instead, I focused on the thuggish behavior of his campaign, which is most certainly political fair game and which I think would be an excellent indicator of how Obama would govern, if given the chance.

If you think that his campaign's behavior is out-of-bounds, well, that shows us just how interested you really are in an ethical government.

I don't find it surprising that you like Saul Alinsky. If I recall correctly, your biggest complaint about Jeremiah Wright's rhetoric was that it was inconvenient. It's not clear to what degree you disagree with black liberation theology, but it's clear that that degree is minor compared to the mainstream of Christian orthodoxy: you're a political and theological radical.

(And it is interesting how often you want to compare your radical comrades to Jesus Christ.)

About abortion, you tell ELAshley the following:

Eric, you and I view abortion differently. We don't think of it the same. Just as you and I view war differently.

But this is an interesting claim, considering your recent comment, here:

I personally am convinced that an unborn child ought to be considered a human being, with rights and all.

On the fundamental issue of whether the unborn have rights, it would appear that you and EL agree, presuming that this statement could be taken at face value.

That presumption leads us back to a larger point about your supposedly moderate views regarding taxation and judges.

Dan, for all your whining about my supposed M.O., you didn't actually repudiate my understanding of your position regarding taxation and your position regarding the Constition: that you think the government isn't taxing enough even though it already takes over a quarter of this nation's GDP, and that you support using our tax money not just for meeting truly "common" needs but also for social welfare programs; and that you think that Congress isn't prohibited from enacting such programs by a Constitution that limits the federal government to its enumerated powers.

Instead of explaining how I am wrong about these positions, you merely assert that I'm wrong generally, and in doing so you're avoiding the substance of why I'm skeptical about how you're oh-so-committed to reasonable taxation and opposed to judicial activism.

If, for instance, you can explain how your opposition to judicial activism is truly meaningful in light of your belief that Congress isn't limited to its enumerated powers, go right ahead. Until you do, I don't think it's imprudent or presumptuous to conclude that the former is little more than a fig leaf to obscure the radicalism of the latter.

It's like your supposed love for the Bible. You get really incensed when someone dares to question that claim, but you still think that the Bible contains atrocities that border on the blasphemous when it records that God did, promised, or commanded something that you don't like.

Or it's like your supposed opposition to demonizing people. You think it really brings civics down, but then again you don't mind Obama's pastor and spiritual mentor slandering the government from the pulpit, grossly accusing our government of creating AIDS as an act of attempted genocide. You have not only defended the hate-mongering conspiracy theorist as a holy man of God who takes care of the poor, you engaged in your own demonizing when you accused us, his critics, of a "digital lynching" and of "crucifying" Jeremiah Wright.

There are numerous examples of the radical details of your philosophy not matching up with the benign generalities in which you present them.

(Heh. No wonder you support Obama.)

Your hypocrisy is well documented. If it's so inappropriate for me to criticize that hypocrisy and shed light on it, maybe you shouldn't level the same accusations yourself:

That sort of behavior, Eric (as you should know), is unethical.

You criticize that which you embrace, friend.

It has ceased to be amazing, how frequently your own words undermine, almost immediately, the moral high ground you want to claim for yourself.

On August 29, 2008 at 6:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

education - should not a Federal responsibility. The NEA is a waste of money.

Food safety - yeah, McCain is against that

health care - very important - Obama would make a mess of it. We need more free market, not less.

home ownership - ??

female wage equality - big myth

diplomatic relations - definitely a plus for McCain

energy - McCain

gov't waste /fraud - McCain & Palin have track records for actually doing something about it. Obama has been in the Senate a few years and basically spent the whole time running for President.

On August 29, 2008 at 6:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And if you don't vote for McCain / Palin you are a sexist! (just poking fun at the foolishness of the "only racists vote against Obama" folks)


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