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Whenever Any Form of Government Becomes Destructive To These Ends,
It Is The Right of the People to Alter Or To Abolish It,
And To Institute New Government

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Sunday, March 06, 2016

A caucus ain’t no primary - Maine

Let’s lay a little groundwork for this
We live in a Maine town with ~2000 folks, about 20 minutes from Bangor and 40 minutes from Bar Harbor (on a road the homeowners built and maintain, Mr. Obama)
Unless you just moved in here, photo ID to vote is kind of a stupid issue for us since, as was proved yesterday by the town registrar who sat at the Republican caucus unenrolled voter registration table (we were Independents), it’s where everybody knows your name. “HELLO EPA’S”, we heard immediately.
Norman Effing Rockwell.
Normally we drive ~3 miles to the town office, or the old grange hall sometimes (no, not in our buggy) say hello to everyone, jaw a bit, and vote, no wait. Even in heavy voting years. I mean, with 2000 people how many voters are there/voting hours = no wait.
So yesterday, driven by HOW MUCH we despise the candidates to one degree or another we felt compelled to be part of the rolling calamity going on.
In Bangor. Pop 25-30k, where the caucus was going on for the southern half of Penobscot County. It was at Husson College. Nice place.
And an OCEAN of vehicles, with HALF MILE walk to reach the end of either of two lines which stretched about 150 yards each, 2-4 people wide outside the building where the actual caucus was.
21 degrees, 15 mph wind. It was a happy crowd. No seriously. It’s only really cold beyond good clothing when the hairs in your nose freeze at the first intake of breath.
After yakking with a few people, they were nice enough to tell us the lines were only for those already enrolled republicans. So we were directed inside the building.
It took TEN MINUTES of walking in what was a set of lines we would have left and gone somewhere else if it was Disneyworld no matter how much the kids started screaming.
We got to the caucus about 40 minutes after it began. 1:40, ending at 5.
We registered, listened to everyone in that room (where a dozen small towns’ town registrars sat ready to enroll people) complain about ‘how the hell did we start with so many people running and every one SUCKS now?’
Several wishes for Carly Fiorina were heard.
We got back in line INSIDE and had about 30 yards of line in front of us before entering the caucus room. CRUZ SIGNS. One small Marco sign. ZERO for Trump. Cruz had appeared Friday in Orono where the University of Maine is about 10-15 minutes from Bangor.
Met Congressman Poloquin who was wisely shaking everyone’s hand. Signed his ballot petition.
Volunteered.
Finally made it into the caucus room where we were alphabetically sorted, had our green ‘YOU CAN TAKE PART’ cards taken and registered, and on we went.

The back side of the balloting area. Line is entered from directly opposite this shot in the small doorway.

One of two ballot lines. This line stretches the entire length of the building before entering the lobby and then winding all through the building to the ballot area.
The result:
Mr Cruz has a LOT of well motivated EVANGELICAL Republican voters. Church is a very busy place up here. It’s community. Schools and churches in the small towns. People conceive of Maine as Blue but the reality is, once you get away from Portland, there are only Blue pockets in SOME of the towns, like Bangor. There are just more people with other priorities in the city. Get smaller and RED. Get into the LAND, RED. Our town went 59-41 McCain, and 60-40 Romney.
City vs Country.
It’s not a coincidence that Cruz wins the caucuses. He’s anti TPP which means he is sanguine about free trade. And the Constitution is IT.
GOOD.
I think his position on Planned Parenthood is WRONG. They should be informed if they don’t spin off their abortion business, they’re cut off. If they do they are a valuable organization and on the right track. The abortion business can then sort themselves out in the market place.
Now he just has to do one thing for me.
Just get in front of a microphone, and say ‘God is not raising any Jew Hunters if Jews remain Jews’. Of course if he cannot say that because he, like Mike Bickle who endorsed him, BELIEVES THAT - he has another BIGGER problem.
And I might be part of it. Because if you believe a perfect being will raise up jew killers for those jews who stay jews, I have a reference for you.
It’s from the Grand Imam of Al Azhar, Tantawi
In the 1960s Tantawi wrote a 700-page treatise on the children of Israel in the Quran and Sunnah (Jews in the Qur'an and the Traditions), in which he summarized: “[The] Qur'an describes the Jews with their own particular degenerate characteristics, i.e. killing the prophets of Allah, corrupting His words by putting them in the wrong places, consuming the people’s wealth frivolously, refusal to distance themselves from the evil they do, and other ugly characteristics caused by their deep-rooted lasciviousness … only a minority of the Jews keep their word. … [A]ll Jews are not the same. The good ones become Muslims, the bad ones do not.
Bickle:
Bickle explained that, according to the Book of Zechariah, one third of world Jewry will “get radically saved and become lovesick worshippers of Jesus,” sparing them from the inevitable apocalyptic fate of the rest of their fellow Jews.
“And so all of Israel, at the end of the day … they end up dying or if they survive they get radically converted at the Second Coming.”
I understand if you’re not Jewish this is not a big deal. But if you are, or can imagine yourself in a Muslim land where they’re not trying to actually kill you, and you hear some imam say ‘the good Christians will convert and the bad ones won’t and those who don’t will cause God to raise up Christian hunters’, and then the guy who is running for the nation’s lead says, ‘thank you crazy imam for endorsing me‘, think about your reaction to that.
We have along way to go, and one thing is TOTALLY CERTAIN.
Karl Rove et al, are FUCKED.
BIG TIME.
Bernie, and Cruz, huh?
Welcome to Maine.
We’ve HAD IT. DONE.
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posted by Epaminondas at permanent link#

10 Comments:

Blogger Pastorius said...

So Cruz never replied to any questions on Bickle?

Or no one ever asked?

Sunday, March 06, 2016 1:26:00 pm  
Blogger Epaminondas said...

TO my knowledge n one has asked (YET) which means this is ammo for the general election (BAAAAAAAD)

It's HELL of a question for WOLF BLITZER, ain't it?

There was a small #DUMPBICKLE move on twitter but it went nowhere.

My assumption is it's just not that important to his followers who seem VERY focused on purity in conservatism.

Maybe he is simply waiting until the nomination is final in which case it won;t matter, OR he will have months to center on this.

Actually, if his people just said, 'look the evangelical vote is way more important than the Jewish vote and support at this point' I would get it

Sunday, March 06, 2016 1:49:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in Texas. I am Jewish. I am a former liberal and I am now completely liberatarin. I doubt Cruz even knows who bickle is. I voted for him when he ran for senate and I have watched him consistasntly since then. He has my total support. If your only worry with him is an anti Jewish bias then you can stop worrying. He is completely supportive of Israel. He is a libertarian. He would argue that a racist is entitled to his beliefs as long as he takes no action to infringe the liberties of another. I have been following this blog for many years and I have been pretty surprised by the many anti Cruz posts written here. They don't align with what I know about Cruz at all. Try writing a letter to him outlining your concerns and see what he says. He is a good person and one I hope will become our president. A lot of what's been said about him is just ad hominem attacks without factual basis. He does what he says he will do, which is a rare commodity these days.

Sunday, March 06, 2016 2:04:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One follow up point. He needs the evangelical vote to win. He will not win by denouncing his support base even if he disagrees with them. Big picture. Do you really think he wish any ill to befall the Jews here or abroad?

Sunday, March 06, 2016 2:18:00 pm  
Blogger Epaminondas said...

Anon, thank you.

However, the facts contradict your view that Cruz does not know Bickle

Sunday, March 06, 2016 2:23:00 pm  
Blogger Epaminondas said...

Anon,
BY the way, support for Israel, (and there are VERY MANY Christian Zionists who do)is a TOTALLY separate issue from accepting that good jews will convert. This is an issue of religious tolerance and Judaism, not ISRAEL being supported as part of God's design, in which Israel is a part (of Bickle's evangelical finale)ONLY because it is filled with Jews (who will not convert, btw).

I've got 10 years in on one of the 3 temples' board of directors and I assure you, this is a BIG DEAL

Bickle's attempt at apology later is, IMHO, easily comparable to what a college student does for the essay question he is unprepared to deal with.

I would rate my feeling on this as somewhere between very keen disappointment, and impossible to vote for.

We have MANY evangelical neighbors and friends, and these are good people. So it's not the evangelical thing, it's hearing Bickle parallel Tantawi (to SOME degree..God knows how much) and then see the Cruz campaign DOUBLE DOWN.

What? Really? 2016? AYFKM?

Sunday, March 06, 2016 2:31:00 pm  
Blogger Epaminondas said...

Lastly Anon... while I will certainly not doubt ANY of Cruz's strict constructionist bona fides (all 100% good).. I will refer you to what Barry Goldwater said and felt about evangelical influence in the Conservative movement, specifically Falwell.

Sunday, March 06, 2016 2:34:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am switching to my computer to write this, since typing comments on my phone makes me spelling prone. Against my better judgement I am going to continue to comment on this. I never do this, and this will be a very long post, but here goes.

I want to start by trying to separate out the emotional aspects of this issue, because there is a context to this that clouds out a rational interpretation of what's actually happening.

I too have family that have been very active in the jewish community. They have been directors of JCC's, Synagogues, Jewish Mens and Womans groups and currently are leaders of the havurah in their retirement community. I was in a jewish fraternity and a jewish youth group. My daughter was in israel for the summer when the last war broke out and she spent two days in a bomb shelter in jerusalem. My grand parents immigrated from poland and russia after the conclusion of WWII. Most of their families didn't survive the war. I own and train with weapons regularly, so that if a Hitler ever happens again, my family and I will not be passively marched to our death without a fight. So I get it. I take it very seriously, and I understand the emotional aspects of what this means to you.

So why would I support Cruz when he refuses to refute Bickle and Bickle's statements on jews.

Here is why:

The vast majority of the jews I know despise Ted Cruz and republicans in general. I have only 2 people in my entire family that are not ultra liberal democrats. They are Israelis living in a rural community in Wisconsin. I know of only 2 other jewish people that share my libertarian ideology out of 100's of jews i know.

Growing up jewish in Texas (i moved here from the north east when I was 13), I had many close non jewish friends and their parents worry that I was going to go to hell because I had not accepted jesus. They were genuinely, tears in their eyes, worried about me. It was fascinating and surprising to see that concerned look on their faces. Like i was injured and bleeding on the street with no one there to render aid to me. That's where they are coming from. Its not malicious. They have been indoctrinated, just like us, in a belief system from birth. Just like us they were raised with an ideology. Just like most people they never question that ideology. If I have learned one thing over the last 14 years of trying to illuminate people to the dangers of islam, it's how stunningly hard it is to get people to question their own belief system. So with all of that said lets get to why the Cruz campaign (not Cruz himself) has taken the position they have in the media.

Cruz is running for president.

He has a large staff of people that manage his media, endorsements, fund raising, etc.

He likely sleeps 3 hours a night or less and has almost zero time to spend on any one issue that arises. He in all likelihood doesn't even hear about this stuff until after it happens and he is forced to deal with it. (I.E. ben carson quitting and rubio bible incidents). Presidential campaigns are chaotic at best.

Regardless of his views pro or con regarding jews and their freedom to remain jewish without outward pressure to convert, he cannot win the election without full throated evangelical support nationally.

There are a lot of evangelical voters in this country.

The last two elections have proven, that milk toast republicans demotivate the evangelicals to vote and its led to 8 years of obama and policies i am sure we all agree are atrocious.

His evangelical support on super Tuesday was weaker then expected.
Trump for some shocking reason is appealing to evangelicals. Go figure. If you can tell me why, i would love to hear it. Its a mystery to me.

-Continued in next post-

Sunday, March 06, 2016 4:18:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

-continued from previous post-

This weakness leaves Cruz with very little leverage and political capital with the
evangelical community. They are rightly suspicious of any politician that is courting them. They have been repeatedly promised things that immediately get ignored after an election. Probably for the benefit of the rest of us.

Lets say, the Cruz I know, agrees with us that this aspect of evangelical thought is repugnant and counter to his own ideology. He is trailing trump right now. He has a bunch of also rans sapping his strength. He has a Republican establishment that hates him more than obama. He is having trouble connecting with the group thats essential to his winning the primary and the general election (evangelicals) . The media refuses to even mention him in most articles, and when they do its about this kind of stuff rather than on issues he will actually do something about. So with all that context, he decides that his position on this issue has to be made clear. He rejects the endorsement of Bickle. He rejects the specific aspects of what bickle said, and he LOOSES the support of evangelicals and therefore the election. Are there enough jews to make up the lost evangelical vote? Not even close. This is a lose lose issue for cruz.


How does that help us? We may feel better about Cruz, but it doesn't do anything to address the following issues:

Islamic Immigration
Jihad terror
Support of Israel internationally and specifically at the UN.
Fiscal Policy (balanced budget amendment, Simplification of federal tax code, debt remediation)
Removal of the IRS as a political weapon
Ensure the supreme court remains committed to textual meaning of the constitution
Shrinking of the size, scope, and power of the federal government.
Returning power to the state and local government.
Reduction of federal regulation.
Facilitate small business job growth

and

Religious liberty
https://www.tedcruz.org/issues/religious-liberty/
Not just christian religious liberty. liberty for all.


So lets say cruz never mentions Biggle again, and the jewish community continues to fume, and somehow he wins the election.

What do you think will happen regarding jews in this country?
Forced conversions? Synagogue closures? Mobs running through the streets killing jews and destroying jewish homes and businesses?

This is already happening, throughout the islamic world and Europe. It's not the evangelical christians doing it. Its the muslims doing it. How long until France is like Lebanon? Belgium? Netherlands? Uk?

You need to get some perspective on this. Bickle is NOT the threat we need to focus on right now.

ISLAM is the number one threat to your liberty, and there is not a single candidate running that has a better understanding of islamism then Ted Cruz.

My gut tells me that the jewish community is making a mountain out of a molehill, and as a result we will have missed our best chance in a generation to deal with the threat of islam, and I am afraid its our last chance to do something before its too late.

I appreciate all of the work you guys do to get the message out to the masses about the dangers of Islam.

I hope that offering my perspective on this makes it somehow easier for you to support Ted Cruz, but like everyone else regardless of your ultimate decision I think you should vote your conscience and what will be will be.

Cheers,

Sunday, March 06, 2016 4:19:00 pm  
Blogger Pastorius said...

Thanks for taking the time to write all that, Anonymous.

I see it similarly to you. It does bother me that Cruz is not being more specific about this issue, and yet I think you are probably right.

I actually like Ted Cruz. In a perfect world, he would be my first choice. However, this world is very imperfect, and thus I think he has NO CHANCE of winning.

Hence I have been pretty quiet about him.

I have tried to find actual quote of what Bickle, and actual quotes of what Cruz said in response, and to no avail. I think there is a possibility this issue is completely trumped up by Think Progress and the like.

However, I don't know.

Ultimately, I do not even for one second believe Cruz would not defend Jews. There is not evidence that he is a nut. None.

People often compare this or that Republican/Conservative to Hitler or Mussolini, or fascist/anti-Semite. The difference is, Hitler made it clear BEFORE he was elected that he hated Jews.

Ted Cruz, George W. Bush, Donald Trump and all the other Conservatives who are tarred with the fascist/anti-Semite label, have NO track record of making anti-Jewish statements.

There are, however, countless Muslims and Liberal Leftist Democrats who have made and continue to make anti-Jewish statements on a regular basis.

But they are not called out on it.

Go figure.

Sunday, March 06, 2016 9:28:00 pm  

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