Senator Cruz's speech on Friday, December 12, 2014 was to an almost empty Senate before the Cromnibus vote. Begins p. S6764 in Congressional Record.
6/1/15, "WHY I SUPPORT TED CRUZ," Lester Jackson, PhD, RedState.com,
"The Great Tree that Fell in an Empty Forest."
"DISCLAIMER: I never have met Ted Cruz or been in contact with anyone connected with his campaign. I would be amazed if he knows I exist. I write this as a citizen appalled at what has been and is being done to his country—due in no small measure to the lack of an opposition party worthy of the name."
"An old question presented to beginning philosophy students is this: If a tree falls in an empty forest, does it make a sound? Very late on a Friday night last December, Ted Cruz gave, in my judgment, one of the greatest, most honest and most courageous addresses ever delivered on the floor of the United States Senate. It is nothing less than a tragedy for everything America is—or was—that very few are aware of this magnificent speech. It is long overdue for this great tree to make a thunderous sound.
It is especially overdue now because the field of candidates for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination has grown ridiculously, confusingly—and dangerously—large. There will always be wishful thinkers such as the Wall Street Journal’s Daniel Henninger, who promises that it is “more likely the best, fittest candidate will emerge.” Like 2008? Like 2012? In both these years, the nominee was a weak candidate representing the Establishment rather than the mainstream of his party. The best explanation is that conservatives divided their votes among potential nominees. I write now in the hope that grassroots conservatives will come to realize that they should unite behind the one unmistakably true conservative in the race. Others include RINO pretenders, egotistical publicity seekers (e.g., Trump) and, sadly, those who can’t let go of the spotlight despite past losses (Rick Perry and erstwhile Arlen Specter supporter Rick Santorum).
Although I have devoted most of my writing to capital punishment, as well as lawless and unconstitutional decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court, I recently have been diverted from that endeavor by the appalling fact that two unmistakably clear election mandates—2010 and 2014—have been contemptuously disregarded by lawmakers elected because they promised to carry out those mandates. As Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) 100% sorrowfully observed, “anyone watching Congress right now would have little reason to think that an historic election occurred only a few weeks ago.” (Print, S6764a; Video.)
I have become more convinced than ever of the late Jude Wanniski’s wisdom expressed two decades ago: “democracy cannot work” if those elected do not keep most of their campaign promises. Although it is considered “sophisticated” to wink at campaign lying because, supposedly, everybody-does-it, this is much more intolerable for conservatives than liberals. Ours is basically a conservative country governed by those on the left against the will of the people; so outside of leftist strongholds such as New York and California, elections are won by promising conservative policies.
2016 will probably be the last chance for conservatives. A major presidential candidate now promises to terminate free speech for conservatives, and, just last year, 48 leftist senators sought to amend the heretofore sacred First Amendment to do just that. The once-great Democrat Party has declared war on freedom. Even without an amendment, IRS thugs have suppressed conservative speech to corruptly aid the Obama re-election.
It is more important than ever for conservatives to unite behind a candidate who is both courageous and sincere. It is, of course, a truism that there are no guarantees in life. But here is another truism: “fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.”
The one certainty about 2016 is that conservatives will surely be double-crossed if they fall for the siren song of a candidate who already has betrayed them on a major issue or who has flip-flopped, probably for campaign purposes. These include, but are not confined to, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) 100% and Scott Walker.
Ted Cruz is the one candidate who is demonstrably both a “conviction politician” and courageous. Liberal Juan Williams calls Cruz the “only consistent Republican candidate,” unsurprisingly paying homage to rigid leftist orthodoxy by belittling this consistency as “rigid adherence to conservative orthodoxy.”
For me, the defining moment came December 12, 2014, just prior to the RINO senate surrender on the infamous lame duck $1.1 trillion “Cromnibus” bill, largely unread by those who voted to enact it. As always, unbearably interminable TV commercials left me no alternative but see what was on CSpan. I never went back to what I was watching because I found Ted Cruz just beginning his riveting address. Although, as noted, few know about this address, in my judgment, anyone who considers himself or herself a true conservative must watch or read it. (Who knows how soon anti-free speech leftist fanatics will succeed in removing this speech from YouTube? Thankfully, they can’t rip it out of the Congressional Record.)
Five aspects of this Cruz classic are especially noteworthy.
FIRST, it was clearly from the heart. It was flawless, eloquent and, above all, not seeking votes from a campaign audience but delivered late on a Friday night to an almost empty Senate chamber, and thus seen and heard by few. Cruz had nothing to gain and had to know he would be even more vilified and despised by the legislators he exposed as corrupt, wimps or both.
Second, on full view, it could be seen why his colleagues so despise him. Oh yes, he has been accused of being counterproductive and strategically destructive to the conservative cause. But the real reason he is the target of so much venom is that he dares both to tell the truth about his dishonest colleagues and also boldly acts to make it harder for them to lie to repeatedly betrayed conservative constituents.
What Cruz did that night was not only courageous but extraordinary in its rarity, not to mention contrary to the spirit if not letter of Senate Rule XIX:
No Senator in debate shall, directly or indirectly, by any form of words impute to another Senator or to other Senators any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming a Senator.Nevertheless, on the floor of the United States Senate, Cruz told the truth (S6764a, 6765a): many of his fellow legislators, Representatives as well as Senators, Republicans as well as Democrats, were voting for the Cromnibus bill to “pay off” lobbyists who were paying them off to be paid off (1:48;11:05). Of course, there was nothing “indirect” about this. Cruz flat out labeled his colleagues “profoundly corrupt [17:58].”
Again, this just is not done!
Tellingly, in courts, truth is the first defense against lawsuits for libel and slander; in the United States Senate, Rule XIX, on its face, prohibits revealing the truth about senators’ unworthy or unbecoming conduct.
In sum, what really makes Cruz so hated and called “extremist” and “rigid” is that he dared and dares to tell the truth. Every true conservative should read or listen to his eloquent—and rare—presentation of truth on the floor of the staid United States Senate.
THIRD, Cruz declared (S6764b; 5:58):
Every Senator in this body should be put on record whether he or she believes it is constitutional for a President to disregard—to ignore—Federal immigration laws, and grant blanket amnesty to millions in defiance of both the laws on the books and the voters.Accordingly, Cruz raised a point of order (S6767b; 35:21) against the Cromnibus bill: that it was unconstitutional. Without delving into the minutiae of senate procedure, this required both an immediate roll call vote and forced senators to go on record.
The last thing senators wanted to do was to go on record. Going on record means that they cannot so easily lie to their constituents. In this case, they would no longer be able to claim to oppose unconstitutional amnesty for alien law-breaking while, actually, supporting it. Of course, constituents do not read the Congressional Record. But plenty of political opponents do and now they have documentation in their campaign arsenal should they care to use it.
FOURTH, a particularly painful truth told by Cruz was that Congress had (and has) the power to stop President Obama’s unconstitutional and lawless actions in their tracks. RINO wimps prefer to break their promises with the Big Lie that they really, really did try but that they have no power to do anything. Well, here’s how Cruz exposed that lie (S6765b; 10:01):
When the President embraces the tactics of a monarch … [t]he Congress representing…the people who just spoke resoundingly in an election should use every constitutional tool available to prevent the President from subverting the rule of law.Can any words be more repulsive to dishonest RINO wimps? Is it any wonder that they despise Cruz?
When the President usurps the legislative powers and defies the limits of his authority, it becomes all the more imperative for Congress to…use those powers given to it by the Constitution to counter a lawless executive branch…If the President will not respect the people, Congress must.
FIFTH, possibly Cruz’s worst offense was that he spoiled [mc_name name='Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)' chamber='senate' mcid='A000368' ]’s weekend. She and other senators whined that their weekends were spoiled by having to vote. That’s right, the nation is, in Cruz’s words, facing a “train wreck” and these senators consider their weekends more important. Of course, Ayotte, in particular, a RINO pretending to be conservative, had longstanding animus toward Cruz.
In two successive elections, conservatives have elected wimps and liars. By contrast, Ted Cruz, refreshingly, has demonstrated exceedingly rare courage. And he dares to tell the truth, also exceedingly rare.
To repeat, there are no guarantees in life. But Ted Cruz is as close as conservatives can expect."
Also by Lester Jackson:
2/15/15, "The Faithless Elected: Boehner and the House Dons," Lester Jackson, American Thinker
"More than any other member of Congress, John Boehner has been responsible for violating critical Republican campaign promises essential to his becoming Speaker. To use a Wall Street Journal characterization of the first President Bush (July 2, 1990, A8), Boehner has “emerge[d] as the leader of the people whose … policies [his party] defeated.”...
While it would be delusional for conservatives to expect anything from Obama, they have every right to expect a Republican Speaker to be on their side. Instead, he works against them with fancy footwork. In 2010, Boehner protested that Pelosi violated House Rules to impose ObamaCare. But in 2014, in order to steamroll Cromnibus, the Boehner bunch had no trouble violating the rules they professed to worship.
To be precise, at a time of Democrat contempt for law as well as rules, Boehner pretended the rules were sacred in order to prevent exercise of power of the purse to defund Obama-Boehner Care; and he completely disregarded the rules in order to needlessly surrender the same power of the purse and thereby reject the 2014 election results before the new Congress took office. This is dishonesty of the most damaging and serious magnitude on the gravest issues of the day. (Incidentally, Rules Committee members who profess fealty to the rules above all else disingenuously disregard that one of their functions is to grant waivers of rules.)
To Boehner and his toadies, truth means little or nothing. But, if representative government, now on life support, is to be saved, truth must be made to mean everything. Just as cancers must be removed to save people, lying legislators must be defeated to save the Framers’ republican legacy.
There can be no success on any issue important to conservatives unless they first elect candidates who tell the truth about what they have done and will do. That cannot occur unless lying is elevated to the top or sole campaign issue. Dishonest campaigners must be defeated as often as it takes, by doing whatever it takes. It is not enough for conservatives to sit out elections and cease giving funds to dishonest Republicans. Conservatives must vote against these Republicans, first in primaries and, however painful, if necessary in the worst cases, by voting for Democrats in general elections. The gravest specific issues will not be addressed without prior removal of representatives who promise, but refuse, to take them on....
Republican liars are no better than Democrat liars. Although Chief Justice Roberts disavows responsibility to “protect the voters from the consequences of their political choices,” this is especially inapplicable to choices based on lies (unless Roberts does not think accurate information is necessary for voter choices). As Roberts well knows, “fraud” is legally defined as knowing misrepresentation of material facts that are relied upon to the detriment of anyone relying on such misrepresentation. It is simply untrue and – yes – a lie to say that a majority of voters ever chose the worst policies of the last five years – policies that John Boehner and representatives who elected him Speaker have ratified, while denying any responsibility....
When conservatives fail to defeat RINOs in primaries, there is an alternative. By 1988, realizing that no new Democrat could do as much damage as senior RINO Senator Lowell Weiker, William F. Buckley, Jr., Connecticut's conservative icon, endorsed and helped elect Democrat Joseph Lieberman.
Now, as then, the worst RINOs are indistinguishable from the worst Democrats. In 2016, these people should be punished for their duplicity. If at all possible, they should be defeated by conservative Republicans in primaries or, if not, conservative voters must swallow the bitter pill of voting for Democrat opponents of the most dangerous Republicans. These surely include Boehner, Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise
What if voting for Democrats causes Republicans to lose their majority in the Senate or the House? The short answer: so what! Just look at what the current crop of Republicans have done to maintain Obama-Pelosi dictatorial policies. They must be defeated in order to be replaced.
Lying has been central to this country’s decay. For example, multiple lies were essential to the infliction of the affliction of Obama Care. Republicans lied to gain control of the House to cure the affliction. They did not, instead electing John Boehner Speaker. Without Boehner, Obama Care would not have been saved; but, instead, it was converted into Obama-Boehner Care. In turn, Boehner would not be Speaker without lies.
First and foremost, campaign lying and liars must be stopped. This is an absolute prerequisite to everything else conservatives desire."
The problem is lack of an opposition party to the Democrats, Lester Jackson, Dec. 2013:
12/12/13: "If RINOs are not replaced, and if a genuine opposition party is not established, nothing can save the Constitution-or the representative democracy and freedoms that are the heritage of this country." (end of article)
12/12/2013, "The Nuclear Option: Misplaced Conservative Outrage," American Thinker, by Lester Jackson
"Many of today's worst problems are due not just to aggressive leftist Democrats who will stop at nothing, but also to timid RINOs who stand for nothing....
It is galling that John Boehner became speaker in 2011, because Tea Party Republicans campaigned on a promise to avert the current ObamaCare disaster. In January 2011, Obama had not yet been re-elected, and the House Republican mandate was at its pinnacle. All Republicans had to do was not vote for money to implement ObamaCare. It is absolutely absurd to say that this required approval of the president or the Senate. The Constitution is crystal-clear: if the House refuses to vote for appropriations, there is nothing anybody else can do about it except scream to high heaven, much as Republicans have done over the nuclear option. (Democrats do not care who screams and how loud; RINOs quake at the very prospect.)
Future historians will have ample reason to conclude that the great tragedy of the Obama dictatorship was not the demise of the filibuster, but that, at a critical moment, House leaders blocked fulfillment of the very promise that made them leaders.
As for filibustering to block judges who would legitimize further unconstitutional abuse of power, never forget Chief Justice Roberts. Those who revere the Constitution and were shocked by ObamaCare's intimidated savior should remember this: reliance on judges is gambling. Heed Judge Learned Hand's warning that we "rest our hopes too much upon constitutions, upon laws and upon courts. These are false hopes." .
Above all, remember that President Obama is able to abuse power only because the RINO-led House timidly refuses to constitutionally block money for such abuse. If RINOs are not replaced, and if a genuine opposition party is not established, nothing can save the Constitution -- or the representative democracy and freedoms that are the heritage of this country.
Lester Jackson, Ph.D., a former college political science teacher, views mainstream media truth suppression as essential to harmful judicial activism. His recent articles are collected here."
Excerpt from Codevilla piece referenced in first paragraph of above Jackson article:
July-August 2010 issue, "America’s Ruling Class — And the Perils of Revolution," Angelo Codevilla
"As over-leveraged investment houses began to fail in September 2008, the leaders of the Republican and Democratic parties, of major corporations, and opinion leaders stretching from the National Review magazine (and the Wall Street Journal) on the right to the Nation magazine on the left, agreed that spending some $700 billion to buy the investors' "toxic assets" was the only alternative to the U.S. economy's "systemic collapse." In this, President George W. Bush and his would-be Republican successor John McCain agreed with the Democratic candidate, Barack Obama. Many, if not most, people around them also agreed upon the eventual commitment of some 10 trillion nonexistent dollars in ways unprecedented in America. They explained neither the difference between the assets' nominal and real values, nor precisely why letting the market find the latter would collapse America. The public objected immediately, by margins of three or four to one.
When this majority discovered that virtually no one in a position of power in either party or with a national voice would take their objections seriously, that decisions about their money were being made in bipartisan backroom deals with interested parties, and that the laws on these matters were being voted by people who had not read them, the term "political class" came into use. Then, after those in power changed their plans from buying toxic assets to buying up equity in banks and major industries but refused to explain why, when they reasserted their right to decide ad hoc on these and so many other matters, supposing them to be beyond the general public's understanding, the American people started referring to those in and around government as the "ruling class." And in fact Republican and Democratic office holders and their retinues show a similar presumption to dominate and fewer differences in tastes, habits, opinions, and sources of income among one another than between both and the rest of the country. They think, look, and act as a class."...
Correcting a March 2015 WSJ op-ed writer, John Boehner--not Obama or the Senate--is responsible for abdicating Power of the Purse for 4+ years:
3/29/15, "Power of the Purse: Abdicated, Not Blocked," Lester Jackson, PhD, RedState
"Don't Blame Senate or President for House Republican Nonfeasance"
"In a remarkable op-ed in last Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal (March 24, A 11), David Rivkin and Lee Casey call for an end to the filibuster in order to curb President Obama’s negation of Congress’ power of the purse. They argue:
"The Obama administration has systematically targeted critical congressional powers…It has rewritten…statutes…[and] effectively blocked Congress’s “power of the purse.”…The recent standoff over [amnesty in] the…Homeland Security appropriations bill is only the latest effort…[The] Obama administration’s strategy, denying the very legitimacy of Congress’s use of its appropriations power…has been abetted by Democratic senators who deploy the filibuster to keep spending legislation that the president opposes from an up-or-down Senate vote."
Whatever else may be said about the merits of abolishing the filibuster or about the president, Rivkin and Casey appear to assume that the House of Representatives cannot, alone, exercise the power of the purse — regardless of the Senate or president.
I recently have written articles (here, here and here)* placing responsibility for failure to exercise that power, in order to rein in Obama abuses, squarely on Speaker Boehner and, more broadly, on the House Republicans who elected him. The filibuster and or president cannot and should not excuse the nonfeasance of a duplicitous and feckless House majority elected by making now-broken promises.
* Updated alternatives: here, here and here."