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The Conservative View - Handwriting on the wall

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STILWELL, Okla. -- Our great nation was founded upon the principle that the power of this nation comes from the people and not the government. Our founders actually did study history, and they understood as a society matures most, if not all, countries eventually fall into a system where a select group rules the nation. For all of us who can see the handwriting on the wall it is a constant fight against the powers that be and the apathy that so many of our fellow citizens have adopted.

I am a believer in having elected officials who come from the grassroots. The grassroots people are the ones close to the situations that the average citizen has to deal with on a daily basis. A few years ago I helped the former Republican state party chairman Dave Weston put on candidate training schools across the entire state of Oklahoma.

Our goal was to help potential candidates to know the pitfalls of politics and how to get their message to the voters. My presentation was entitled the POOR BOY CAMPAIGN SCHOOL. I understood firsthand how difficult it is to raise enough money to run a campaign. I taught the candidates how to make their own signs and I shared some of my experiences of past campaigns. Obstacles are a constant companion in a political campaign, and our state legislature just laid another obstacle on the grassroots candidate.

Last year I ran for the state senate, and the fee to file for that office was $200. Due to the so called superiority of the ruling political class in OKC, in the future that fee will be $750. The new fee to run for State Representative will be $500. Over the past several months many of our elected officials have been screaming to the high heavens about needing more money. I am growing tired, as are many other Oklahomans, of having our intelligence insulted by these jokers.

The amount of money raised by increasing the filing fees is totally insignificant when it comes to the state budget. What this action does is to deter potential candidates from running for office. Instead of making it more difficult for up and coming candidates we should be encouraging them. In my opinion too many of our elected leaders are totally incompetent, but they will do anything to stay in office.

The entrenched political class in our state already has a huge advantage over the grassroots candidates. It is a fact that special interest groups will fund the campaigns of the political class because they know that their needs will be met first. The grassroots candidates are not beholden to the special interests and will not receive any of their money.

The political class has also developed a strategy where they will scratch each other’s backs through endorsements and favors to keep their cronies in office. All of the legislators who voted for these fee increases have got the gall; just look at all of the so called conservatives and their dismal voting records, the sexual scandals plaguing the legislature, and the total mis-management of the taxpayer funds.

If our current crop of legislators is doing such a fine job they should not worry about any competition from idealistic grassroots conservatives who were already at a huge disadvantage. 

In the book of Daniel in the Old Testament, a wicked king was given a message from God with a disembodied hand writing a message on a wall; the message told of the consequences the king would endure because of his wickedness. Whenever anyone loses track of their beliefs and principles there will be consequences. While some think that the Republicans will remain in power forever, we need to take a hard look at all of the special elections of late and see who is wining the majority of them.

The Republican Party is supposed to be the party of smaller government and the party that cherishes individualism. The Republican majorities in the state capital were fought for by the very grassroots activists that are now being tossed aside with the belief they are no longer needed. If this trend is not reversed the hand writing on the wall will be that grassroots will not be there to help them when they need it.

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About the Author

Russell Turner
Russell Turner was born in Tahlequah Oklahoma and has lived his entire life in rural Adair...
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About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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