One of the things in my life that I’ve tried to cultivate is knowledge of History. I’m a huge History enthusiast, especially for the American variety. While our History is profuse with great stories, some triumphant, some ignominious, and still others mundane, there is one repeated notion that has struck me as significant. Like the rest of the world, our politics have been, and often still are, based upon concepts of tribalism and socialism, and this for good reason. These are among the most powerful ways to motivate people to desired ends. Predominantly, our political candidates have appealed to such concepts, to great effect, when securing loyal voters in an election. Whether tribalism took the form of party and ethnic identity, or socialism assumed the form of the promise of a chicken in every pot, these two have been used, frankly, because they’re easy. It is a very easy thing to say “Vote for me, because the other guy is not a part of our tribe, and all that implies!” It appeals to a natural survival instinct that exists in all of us, it appeals to prejudices both ancient and contemporary, and it’s a simple way of steering the voter away from asking too many questions. It is equally an easy thing to appeal to socialism. When a candidate says, “Vote for me, and I will give you bread and circuses!” or in our case “free college education and universal healthcare,” they’re compelling political action by appealing to desire, both need and greed. And socialism must necessarily contain its own brand of tribalism; with the role of the reviled other enacted by the wealthy and the corporate cabal. In this case, the legendary 1%, whose gains are ill-gotten for little other reason than that they have them and we don’t, are targeted for property confiscation in order to pay for the promised bread and circuses. In this, our loyalty and electoral endorsement is purchased through other people’s money, which is an easier sacrifice for the buyer, that is, until the golden goose is killed and government must now pluck the rest of the people to provide the free goods it promised, in lieu of deficits. There is, however, a third way. A yearning that can be just as powerful a motivator as the other two: Freedom, the concept that one person can have maximum control over their own destiny. It’s not as easy a sell as socialism; you aren’t offering other people’s property up to the mob. It’s a bit more difficult than tribalism, because what you offer crosses tribal lines. However, when it takes hold, it can be transcendent, revealing the other motivators to be myopically self-centered. Freedom is for all, and in it lie all of the potential of human beings, for better or worse. Socialism may give you subsistence (while it lasts), but it can’t make you prosper. In fact, it will eventually punish you for doing so. But if you give a man the freedom to use his talents and motivation, and if government gives him sufficient berth, there is little that he cannot do, if he chooses.
Unfortunately, too many have fallen spell-bound under the siren song of socialism, and our country is succumbing to the crushing monolithic weight of the debt that must always follow. The temptation of gaining that which we haven’t earned for ourselves is potent, and freedom, necessarily a casualty of socialism, is becoming more and more the exception. Today, the federal government is involved in the lives of ordinary citizens on a level that was never before imagined, making the choices for our lives that we previously were free to make for ourselves. Among its tyrannies, the government can now force us to purchase a product, healthcare, under the threat of fine or imprisonment; the executive has coopted law-making powers, taking away the people’s choice of legislative representation; the IRS has been weaponized to attack the political opponents of the President, including those that Government antagonizes for their religious beliefs; and the courts have also usurped legislative powers, making their personal biases and moral views higher than our actual laws. And even though we recognize that Government causes many of the problems in our lives, we foolishly turn to an expanding government to solve them. Let’s try something different. Let’s return the beast of government back to the cage it was never intended to leave, to the enumerated powers of the Constitution. Let’s stop the monarchization of the Presidency and the corruption of the courts. Let’s re-empower the states and the individuals to make their own decisions, based on their own wisdom, treating them like adults and the sovereigns of their own lives they are supposed to be. In order to sort out these Constitutional crises, a leader is needed that has a record of devotion to Individual Liberty and the Constitution, an expert who knows where the problems lie, how to fix them, and has the will and courage to lawfully act. That leader is Ted Cruz.
Ted Cruz has had a remarkable career in the public’s service. His hallmark is his devotion to the Constitution; it is his passion. From youth, he could recite it from memory. As a law clerk for Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist, he learned its finer points and also witnessed its subversion by vain majority opinions. As the Director of the Office of Policy Planning at the Federal Trade Commission, Ted Cruz advocated for Constitutional free-market principles. As Solicitor General for Texas, he fought for the Constitution nine times, including winning cases against the George W. Bush administration when the right to bear arms was on the line and also when the independence of state courts was threatened by world judges. In private practice, Ted Cruz’s specialty was Constitutional matters. In the U.S. Senate, Ted Cruz was a thorn in the flesh, not only to Democrats who continually work to subvert the Constitution, but also to the GOP establishment who talk a good game, but whose courage instantly dissolves with the gentle whisper of shutdown. In that environment, Ted Cruz was one of a few voices that at least stood to be counted and even occasionally won a few victories, fighting the Democrats with one hand and dragging the GOP with the other. Even Cruz’s supposed failure, his filibuster against Obamacare. In this case, one man showing courage resonated with the public enough to shift the balance of power, ultimately resulting in the GOP taking a majority in the Senate during the following mid-term election. Cruz remained true to his campaign promises, advancing conservatism at every opportunity and not ditching his convictions for perceived political gain. Time and time again, Ted Cruz was consistent and faithful, including to his promise to stand against amnesty, being instrumental in killing the Rubio/Schumer amnesty bill. There are NO candidates currently running that can compete with such accomplishments.
In spite of such a fine record, there are those that would argue that Ted Cruz cannot win. One reason is that he’s too conservative. In answering that I need only cite the colossal wins of Ronald Reagan. Reagan appealed to freedom in a time when the world was turning to the Left and to the Soviet Empire. Reagan showed us that we can have a coalition of people from all walks of life based upon uniting principles, those that are found in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. Just as importantly, Reagan showed that a campaign of principle can win! It takes courage, risking that the people you don’t pander to won’t be swayed to support higher principle over tangible gifts from government, but it can be done. To this end, Ted Cruz has the principles, passion, and oratory skill to reassemble the Reagan coalition, appealing to people’s yearning for freedom to decide for themselves rather than having the shapes in central planning make those decisions for them. If one has a skilled speaker to make the case, the people will overwhelmingly choose liberty over the promise of free stuff that we cannot afford.
Another criticism of Cruz is that he’s not likeable, that he doesn’t get along with his colleagues in the senate and can’t be expected to get things done as President. Well, I’m afraid that the candidate’s cuddliness or lack thereof didn’t make my list of the necessary attributes of a President, and I see no reason to amend it now. However I do have a few things to say about Ted Cruz’s supposed unlike-ability. First of all, this terseness must be very subtle, because it doesn’t seem to resonate through media. Aside from occasionally being difficult with debate moderators, when you see Ted speak or interact, he comes off as confident, respectful, and even jovial. This is true especially when you see him in spontaneous candid moments, speaking with supporters and opponents alike on the campaign trail, further making the portrayal of him being some kind of a jerk truly a hard-sell. Consider his appearance on Jay Leno’s show at the height of the government shutdown, at a time when his name was supposed to be mud; he had that audience cheering for him. 1 Even if you do accept that Cruz may be privately less disciplined in discourse, ponder this: Ted is very smart, and like many intelligent people, he can occasionally come off as awkward. Fair enough. However, when you weigh getting a dependable soldier for the Constitution as President against possible behind the scenes brusqueness, as far as I’m concerned, it isn’t even a contest. And concerning Cruz’s inability to get along with the establishment, the same politicians that preemptively surrender their core convictions at the drop of a hat, I think their esteem would be cause for shame rather than praise. They don’t like Cruz because he forced them to stand up for principle when they would rather not risk it. Cruz’s courage made them look bad… and they hate him for it. Be that as it may, if you are concerned that congress won’t work with a Cruz Presidency, cheer up! I can scarcely believe that a GOP Congress will suddenly find their long-absent spine when dealing with a Conservative President when it could scarce find it under a Progressive one.
Ted Cruz’s plan is simple and has a record of Conservatism, courage, and dependability. He will draw on that record of experience to do something that Republicans have done little of in a long time: give us true reform. Ted Cruz has promised, “If I’m elected president, let me tell you what I intend to do on the first day in office. The first thing I intend to do in office is rescind every single illegal and unconstitutional executive action taken by this President.” “The second thing I intend to do on the first day in office is instruct the Department of Justice to open an investigation into Planned Parenthood and these horrible videos, and to prosecute any and all criminal violations by that organization.” “The third thing I intend to do on the first day in office is instruct the Department of Justice and the IRS and every other federal agency that the persecution of religious liberty ends today!” “The fourth thing that I intend to do on the first day in office is to rip to shred this catastrophic Iranian nuclear deal!” “The fifth thing I intend to do on the first day in office is to begin the process of moving the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem”. 2 Of course, all of these promises are merely for his first day, with many more days for the harder tasks of the principled reform of government such as tax reform, simplifying and capping it at 15%; balancing the budget and paying down our crippling national debt; cutting the chains of our regulatory state and getting the economic engine running again; restoring America’s military and standing up to her adversaries while turning from the checkered path of nation building; and Cruz is the only candidate who will enforce our immigration laws, secure the border, and kill amnesty. 3 And when Cruz says this is what he’ll do, you can believe it, because he has a consistent record of making hard choices of principle and sticking to them. Consider Cruz’s recent victory in Iowa. While every other candidate in the farm-land of Iowa abased themselves before ethanol subsidies (Trump even proposed their expansion), Cruz proved that he was serious about ending crony capitalism and reducing the size and reach of government by reaffirming the phase-out of all subsidies. 4 And he did this while most pundits were saying that his Presidential run would die if he didn’t kowtow before this particular form of corporate welfare. That takes guts, the kind we’ve supposedly been waiting for. Also, Cruz showed us that you can show guts and still win! The people of Iowa rewarded his courage by caucusing for him, giving him the first caucus/primary win by a Latino and the largest vote total in Iowa GOP Caucus history.
Since Reagan left, we’ve been continually disappointed by his successors, those that would lay claim to the Reagan mantel, but all too often these would-be heirs find it expedient to abandon principle to make a deal. They tell us, even in victory, that in spite of what they promised us during the election cycle that they can’t deliver until they grasp the next level of power. They tell us to be patient, while they do nothing as our liberty is slowly taken from us. In such cases of Republicans lacking the courage of their own convictions, it becomes clear that there are two parties in this country: the Democrats are the party of national suicide, while the Republicans become the party of national hospice. Though one party gets the country to death’s door faster, either way the nation dies. We can’t get this one wrong! We can’t do the regular Republican thing, nominating whomever we find superficially most electable; we’ve gone down that path of compromise and failure too many times. Decisive and bold action is required to save the country, and that requires a bold and decisive candidate. Some have said that three to four justices for the Supreme Court will be nominated in the next administration, putting many of our basic liberties in jeopardy. Who can you trust to make these appointment/nominations other than a Constitution expert who believes in those principles, Trump? Trump rarely mentions the matter, and when he does he sounds somewhere between a novice and a snake-oil salesman. How about Rubio? God bless Marco, but you just can’t discount how quickly the guy changed from impassioned opponent of amnesty to trying to jam amnesty through Congress, which is hardly a resume bullet for consistency. With Cruz’s courage, talent, intelligence, and conviction to Constitutional principles, why would we settle for less when we have such a choice? With whatever short-comings the Ted Cruz may have (and all the candidates have them), Cruz is still the most conservative, the most dedicated to reform, and the most proven in battle. The other candidates all amount to a concession and a dangerous gamble in a time where our country as we have known it may be only holding on by the slimmest of knots. With Ted Cruz, as a life-long across the board Conservative, finally there is a candidate that gets every major category right, negating the need to settle or compromise. And so, I urge everyone reading this to vote for Ted Cruz, in the primary and general, because he alone is the best chance we have to reverse our country’s expiration and heal our Republic. If it isn’t Cruz, the only thing we’ll preserve is our privilege to complain about the next politician who’s failed us, and that will be sore compensation when the country passes the point of no return.
– Ryan Thorson