February 5, 2012

Weld (CO) County Lincoln Day - Caucus Minus 72 hours

I feared that last night's ThreeSources Blogger Bash might be falling apart due to the substantial snowstorm we endured from Thursday through Saturday. But what snow taketh, snow giveth back. Blog brothers JK and BR traded places as BR's weekend plan was outdoors - in the mountains.

The night began with some contretemps and dirty looks as our assigned table had been swiped by a Mr. Bud Johnson and 7 other senior citizens. An honest mistake I suppose - I might also have confused the "table tent" sign reading "THREESOURCES.COM" for the one reading "Bud Johnson." They must have chewed and swallowed our sign so we made a replacement.

So after considerable hunting around we were awarded Bud's assigned table way to the side of the room. (I could see the speaker at the podium from behind the loudspeaker on the stage so it wasn't that bad.) I asked the nice young man who helped us find Bud's table to please let Mr. Johnson know we had found his table. I said that since they were our elders we would not ask them to move.

We had the last laugh though, I think, since ours was one of the tables Rick Santorum visited while pressing the flesh. We were the last table in our row but it was, after all, the front row. Rick was quite generous with his time, making leisurely visits to each table. He shook hands with several of us but he seemed to know better than to engage in conversation, and nobody I saw tried to. We all thanked him for coming.

Once we were settled we enjoyed a nice dinner, rolicking conversation and speeches from Rick Santorum and Cory Gardner. I'll discuss those in a separate post at some point but for now I'll refer you to Terri's excellent writeup on Santorum with another great photo. I didn't think he was as flat as she did but he could have done better. He was the best speaker of the night though and I thought he made a good case for the "doomsday" message he's been derided for in some quarters.

It was an excellent night. I was very happy to meet Terri and Nanobrewer in person and find out how much more we have in common than just political views.

Speaking of common views, before we entered the hall I decided to go visit with some demonstrators we saw on the sidewalk (and heard from across the street.) I chatted with three or four of them and would have liked to talk much longer. They were friendly and well spoken, although some of their signs were stereotypical of the #Occupy mentality's darker (egalitarian collectivist) side.

I was offered an "overturn Citizens United" petition to sign. Given my propensity of late, and considering the well-meaning young man (Josh, if I remember correctly) only had four signatures before me, I signed it. We talked about whether corporations should have the rights of people and I suggested that, like people, some corporations are good and some are bad. "When you talk about Wall Street I think corporations like Fidility Investments are good while Goldman Sachs is bad. The distinction is cronyism." They were like, "Yeah, that's right." To which I said, "See, that's the same point of view we have in the TEA Party." This was met with some skepticism. I'm sure If I'd stayed five minutes longer we'd have been in an argument about something. I didn't see the "ROBIN HOOD WAS ONE OF US" message on the 99% sign until I'd left - If I had we'd certainly have talked about that. But they encouraged me even more to attempt to bridge the gap, somehow, somewhere. I plan to spend some time on their website: occupygreeley.org. If I can get through or around the Marxism to connect with real people I think we can make progress together on common ideas. And I gave them our web address, twice, so maybe one or more of them will reach out to us as well.

Peace on, brothers!

UPDATE: Perhaps because I had so much fun talking to the demonstrators out front, dagny gave an interview to a local newspaper. (Not just a bunch of *bloggers* mind you.) The UNC campus newspaper The Mirror quotes her in the fourth paragraph:

"I'm glad we came," said Jodi Rinard, a member of the WCRP. "It's a great chance to discuss ideas. It's a great chance to discuss politics."

Well done dear! She told me she'd talked to them but the story wasn't in the online edition when I looked this morning. It's a pretty straight account of the themes Rick Santorum discussed. It soft pedals the importance Rick put upon repealing Obamacare saying only, "Once the people become dependent on the government for their health, there is nothing the government won't be able to control," Santorum said. Santorum contrasted the Romney and Gingrich records of "supporting an individual mandate at some point in their careers" with his "authorship of the law implementing Health Savings Accounts (HSA) 20 years ago. Rick also quoted Margaret Thatcher as saying Britain's NHS was the biggest obstacle to free-market government reform.

UPDATE: [2/20/12] Video of Rick Santorum's speech can be seen here.

2012 2012 Election Posted by JohnGalt at February 5, 2012 12:30 PM

A fine night indeed! Many thanks to JG and Dagny for organizing and driving the effort. It was great to meet NB and Terri. Mrs. Refugee has texted about everyone whom she knows with the picture of Rick Santorem and her. (However, she still plans to caucus for Newt.)

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 5, 2012 10:24 PM

I will second the "fine night" feeling.
Thank you all for the invite and ride. I spent the day in research and am now solidly leaning Santorum.
He doesn't strike me as a leader of men, but he does have the basics down pat.

I admire you Mr. Galt for reaching out. Perhaps one day a youtube video of you doing TaiChi in the midst of an occupation will go viral. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkW0bt-9kO8....it just makes me chuckle)

A joy to meet you all!

Posted by: Terri at February 5, 2012 11:38 PM

Looks grand! Thanks for the report and pictures. Maybe something in late spring...

Posted by: jk at February 6, 2012 11:34 AM | What do you think? [3]