March 2015


Politics is a Contact Sport


You hear a lot nowadays about the rising number of “Decline to State” voters, many of whom left the Republican Party.  They don’t like politics.  They are unhappy with the way the Republican Party is doing things.  They feel they don’t matter. 

Since this a common complaint it bears some study.  What does it take to make a political party succeed?  Besides money it takes workers.  I hear the most complaints from Republicans who do no work.  They watch.  They may even monitor what the Party and the leaders are doing.  But, they do not participate beyond occasionally sending a small donation.  They basically have no skin in the game.  

Now, let’s take a look at Democrats.  Yes, they get a lot of support from union members who are Democrats.  Those Democrats, whether union or not, are on the job 24/7.  If they lose an election, the next morning they are planning and plotting on how they will win the next time around.  They never sit around and openly complain about the Party and its leaders.  They just work to change things.

Too many Republicans think that wishing will make it happen.  Politics is a contact sport.

First and foremost be an informed voter.  You must know your facts before you get into battle. The contact part means that workers register voters, walk precincts for a candidate, attend local political meetings (city council and school board meetings), operate a phone bank and make a donation when possible.  

Are there Republicans who walk precincts?  Of course!  Are there ever enough?  No. 

A good way for a Republican worker to start is to obtain a copy of his or her precinct (which can be had from their county Republican Party) and get to know the Republicans in the precinct.  Then, when an election comes along, the worker is not a stranger when he or she goes out to contact the Republicans.  

I know too many Republicans who are wringing their hands over the condition of the country and the abysmal leadership of this President.  I also know that most of them are doing just that and only that: wringing their hands.  

Remember.  Democrats do not wring their hands.  Their goal is to advance the progressive agenda and they are at it all the time.  It is called work.  That is the one thing that we can learn from the other party.  We are in a contact sport and sitting on the sidelines watching is a sure way to lose.

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1.    When did Baseline Budgeting appear on the national scene?
•    Genesis of Baseline Budgeting was in the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
•    Act required Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to prepare projections
of federal spending for the upcoming fiscal year based on a continuation of the
existing level of governmental services.
•    The Act guarantees an increase of funding every year regardless of need.

2.    What is the Debt Ceiling and what is the current amount?
•    The debt ceiling is an upper limit set on the amount of money that a government may borrow.
•    In 2006, the debt ceiling was $8.2 Trillion.
•    As of February, 2014, the debt ceiling is $17.2 Trillion.
•    August 2015 is the date when the debt ceiling will be raised again.

3.       How do individuals and families operate their budget?
•    Review income.
•    Your baseline is reality – It is the amount of money you have to start with.
•    If you have less income, people make adjustments to their spending.

4.       Assumptions of Baseline Budgeting in Washington D.C.
•    Based on presumption that every item in the budget will automatically increase between 3 and 10% depending on what the item is, every year regardless what happened in the previous year.
•    The 3 to 10% increase every year becomes the starting point for every budget

5.       How Baseline Budgeting becomes a Political Weapon
•    If there is no increase in a budget item, the political machines start in with 
the rant that there have been huge cuts.
•    There have been no cuts.  There just have not been any increases.
•    For example:  In 1995, when Republicans tried to stop the automatic increase
in the budget, the mantra of the Democrats became that school lunches were
being cut and children would starve.
•    This line of attack becomes possible because most people do not understand
Baseline Budgeting.  
•    By the way, Obamacare ups the baseline so automatic increases are off the charts.


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