Wes Riddle is GOOOH Endorsed

December 14, 2011

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Wes Riddle is GOOOH Endorsed

Wes Riddle is GOOOH Endorsed for U.S. Congress, TX-District 25!

Update: Tuesday's Redistricting Hearing in San Antonio

December 14, 2011

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Update: Tuesday’s Redistricting Hearing in San Antonio

Important News Regarding Candidate Filing Deadlines and More

Dear Texas GOP leadership and candidates:

As we wrap up a very long day from today’s redistricting hearing in front of the federal panel in San Antonio, we wanted to again keep you informed of the latest news and where we anticipate going from here.

The majority of the issues that were addressed today related to the immediate and pressing issue of candidate filing. Tomorrow, we expect an order from the panel that will ratify the agreement between the two political parties to extend candidate filing through Monday, December 19th for all races and positions on the ballot. We are instructing candidates to file their applications using the intended district number and designation for the office they are seeking.

There is, of course, the difficulty of how to best proceed without finalized maps. We have asked that the panel provide an opportunity for candidates who have already filed to be able to amend or withdraw their filing, should the need arise.

Under this solution, if a candidate files to run in a State Representative district whose number changes from the current map to a different number on a finalized map – the candidate would be able to either amend the designation on their application or be afforded the option of withdrawing their application if they choose not to run. Importantly, we are asking the panel to order that candidates who choose to withdraw their application will also be entitled to a refund of the filing fee, if they choose not to run based on the new district lines. This will apply to all candidates at every level.

If the court ratifies the proposal, this will also provide the opportunity for new candidates to file for a position once its district lines are finalized. In other words, filing will be re-opened once all court redistricting is finalized. In many cases, this will give an opportunity to a candidate who was running for a different position that is no longer an option to them. In other cases, it may open the race up to a newcomer in the contest who was not previously eligible.

We know this solution is imperfect, but like all of you, we are working to come up with the best possible, workable and fair solutions so the panel can get them approved, and we can quickly get focused back on the administration of these important elections. These proposals, if ratified by the panel, will allow for the quickest and most fulfilling method of handling the vast majority of candidate filings now, instead of creating a bigger problem days or weeks closer to the date of the election.

As to determining that date – we want to inform you that all parties will be in mediation on Thursday to discuss how to proceed with the timing of the election beyond the filing period. But again, a note of caution – with the exception of the court’s announcement that they would sign an order on Wednesday which extends the deadlines, all other anticipated actions we have discussed are not a certainty until they are submitted to the court and signed. We do anticipate that occurring tomorrow afternoon. As always, we will keep you informed as soon as we have any news to pass along so that you can keep informed in your campaigns and in your community.

We cannot begin to express how grateful we are for your continued patience, and for the support you have shown in this process. If you have any questions that we have not answered or not considered, please let us know. We will be in contact again soon with more updates.

US House of Representatives (Dist. 25-Texas) Candidate Wes Riddle on Interstate Compacts, Immigration and the EPA

December 14, 2011

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US House of Representatives (Dist. 25-Texas) Candidate Wes Riddle on Interstate Compacts, Immigration and the EPA

1. Interstate Compacts (objective: shield state regulatory autonomy from federal interference, e.g., ObamaCare, EPA environmental meddling, etc.) What is the candidate’s position on interstate compacts?

Interstate Compacts represent one [of six] important strategies available to Texas, in order to effectively redress the Federal Government’s overreach into areas properly reserved to the States. The strategies should enable us to reclaim the Constitution and to halt transformation now underway from a constitutional federal Republic to that of a consolidated national democratic welfare state.

Interstate compacts are an effective way to regulate areas of mutual concern among two or more states, such as health care reform. The Supreme Court has held that congressional consent to such compacts trumps prior federal law and may even subordinate federal agencies to the agencies created by the interstate compact. Congressional consent does not necessarily require presidential signature. The Supreme Court has also suggested that congressional consent may be inferred from acquiescence. Interstate compacts thus have enormous unexplored potential as a way of shielding areas of state authority from the concentration of power in Washington, and we ought to have an interstate compact to create an alternative state-based regulation of health care (to replace ObamaCare).

The other five strategies which the State must pursue are: 1) Constitutional amendment to balance the budget; 2) opting out of federal programs and federal funds that have strings attached; 3) federal lawsuits (especially aimed at ObamaCare and the EPA to seek relief from environmental actions); 4) federal legislation (amending the Administrative Procedures Act so the Supremacy Clause shall not apply to mere regulatory action against state law, as well as modifying rules of decision for federal courts to give the Tenth Amendment precedence and presumption), and, finally; selectively applied, 5) the doctrine of nullification or state interposition described by Madison and Jefferson in the Kentucky and Virginia Resolves.

2. Border security and immigration (legal and illegal). There is a tremendous amount of concern and anxiety among Texas citizens concerning illegal immigration, border transgressions and violence to include the cost to legal citizens to maintain illegal immigrants in this country.

The federal government (Article One, Section 8; US Constitution) is tasked to defend the borders. In reality, the Texas DPS is expending tremendous effort (at tremendous cost) to do the job the federal government is formally tasked to do. Consequently, many have suggested Texas submit the bill for its self defense to the federal government.

What is your position on border security and immigration as well as the idea of Texas billing the federal government for services rendered?

The United States is a union comprised of equal sovereigns. Moreover, the federal government and individual states are dual sovereigns in their respective orbits, their rights and powers equally inviolable and distinct, albeit complementary. While it is true that defense of national borders is a quintessential federal responsibility, it is also true that state borders are every bit as inviolate as the nation’s, whether they are coincident or not. Long before the federal government took control of immigration issues and control of borders in this respect, states controlled their own borders and processed immigrants. They did so at Ellis Island (New York) and at Galveston Island (Texas). States, therefore, should revisit the notion that defense of borders, as well as immigration control, is a shared responsibility. Malfeasance or negligence on the part of the federal government may in fact necessitate aggressive action on the part of the states to compensate or to address emerging emergency situations. Nonetheless, Texas should definitely submit its bill for self defense to the federal government for activities reasonably attributed to it and/or claimed by the federal government for exclusive jurisdiction where it also fails to enforce its own laws or take charge of said jurisdiction. Better yet, Texas should withhold the total sum from the federal government and just call it “Payroll Deduction.”

3. EPA transgressions upon Texas state sovereignty. In your opinion, should the federal Environmental Protection Agency have: (a) sole legal jurisdiction over Texas environmental management issues, or; (b) should this responsibility lie with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, or; (c) should this be a shared jurisdiction? Explain.

Federal real property in Texas amounts to less than two percent, and we are fortunate in that respect compared to the many “Western” states where the Federal Government owns much larger percentages of total land area. Since Texas owns almost all of its land and what lies beneath that land in terms of energy and mineral wealth, the EPA has very little legal jurisdiction over Texas environmental management issues. Certainly none of it can be considered as “sole” jurisdiction. The preponderance of environmental management issues in the State of Texas belong to the property owners, private sector and regulatory agencies of the State of Texas, albeit in routine communication and coordination with respective federal agencies where the jurisdiction overlaps.

The Wisdom of Bastiat

December 14, 2011

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The Wisdom of Bastiat

Frederic Bastiat was Ronald Reagan’s favorite philosopher. Bastiat was born 200 years ago in France to a merchant father. Bastiat was orphaned, however, at age nine and brought up by his grandfather and his aunt. At seventeen, Bastiat went to work in his uncle’s accounting business and spent six years there. Then he inherited his grandfather’s farm and became a farmer. From the farm, Bastiat became active in local politics and started to write pamphlets on political and economic topics. Indeed, the last six years of his life witnessed his pouring forth, a most remarkable series of writings—right up to his untimely death from lung infection on Christmas Eve, 1850 at the age of forty-nine. Today Bastiat is regarded as a first-rate political theorist and economist. His peculiar gift of argument was his method of exaggeration, which he used to expose inherent fallacies in the logic of socialists and economic protectionists.

For instance, if a proposed new railroad from Paris to Madrid should have a break at Bordeaux, in order to force passengers to stop and shop and thus benefit that city, then why not break the railroad at a dozen or so other cities? Indeed, have the railroad consist of nothing but gaps—a negative railroad if you will! Wouldn’t that help everyone along the route by the same logic? His supreme jest was the petition of the candlemakers. In it, he asks the Chamber of Deputies to pass a law requiring the closing of all openings by which the light of the sun can enter homes and businesses. That way, you increase the need for artificial light—France consumes more oil and other industry-related products; ergo, thousands of ships will now engage in whaling. In short order, France will have a great fleet to uphold its honor and to gratify its patriotic longings! In Latin this kind of argument is called reductio ad absurdum, and I think Bastiat would have a field day today. He’d have less competition too, since there are so few talented politicians to engage with him in mental joust.

Alas, you’d think a country of over three hundred and seven millions could do a little better than the hundreds of mediocre representatives and senators we have! Elected officials, as well as the electorate, would do well to become familiar with the profound wisdom in Bastiat’s writings. Bastiat speaks clearly to our day (‘he that hath an ear, let him hear’), and I quote:

On Freedom and Harmony

Society is composed of men, and every man is a free agent. Since man is free,
he can choose; since he can choose, he can err; since he can err, he can suffer.
I go further: He must err and he must suffer; for his starting point is ignorance,
and in his ignorance he sees before him an infinite number of unknown roads,
all of which save one lead to error.

This explains man’s necessarily painful evolution…. Two very different
masters teach him [his lessons]: experience and foresight. Experience teaches
efficaciously but brutally.It instructs us in all the effects of an act by making us
feel them, and we cannot fail to learn eventually, from having been burned
ourselves, that fire burns. I should prefer, in so far as possible, to replace this
rude teacher with one more gentle: foresight.

On the Market Economy

By virtue of exchange, one man’s prosperity is beneficial to all others.
Capital has from the beginning of time worked to free men from the
yoke of ignorance, want, and tyranny. To frighten away capital is to rivet
a triple chain around the arms of the human race.

Property, the right to enjoy the fruits of one’s labor, the right to work, to
develop, to exercise one’s faculties, according to one’s own understanding,
without the state intervening otherwise than by its protective action—this
is what is meant by liberty.

On Law and Justice

It is not because men have passed laws that personality, liberty, and
property exist. On the contrary, it is because personality, liberty, and
property already exist that men make laws.

Law is the organization of the natural right to legitimate self-defense; it is the
substitution of collective force for individual forces, to act in the sphere in
which they have the right to act, to do what they have the right to do; to
guarantee security of person, liberty, and property rights, to cause justice to
reign over all.

On State Intervention

The state tends to expand in proportion to its means of existence and to live
beyond its means, and these are, in the last analysis, nothing but the substance
of the people. Woe to the people that cannot limit the sphere of action of the
state! Freedom, private enterprise, wealth, happiness, independence, personal
dignity, all vanish.

The State is the great fictitious entity by which everyone seeks to live at the
expense of everyone else.