Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Michele Bachmann at Values Voters Summit 2010

Below is Rep. Bachmann's speech at the Values Voters Summit this past weekend. This is obviously a very friendly group for her. It's a very religious right/tea party sort of atmosphere.

If you are unfamiliar with the Values Voters Summit, let me give you some quick background. It is primarily sponsored by FRC ActionAFA Action, American Values, The Heritage Foundation, and Liberty University. These groups' values usually primarily involve opposing abortion and virtually anything involving homosexuality. They are very much against the NY Muslim community center near Ground Zero. They believe this nation was intended by its founders to be a Christian nation and are fighting to establish that. They also fight for vouchers so that tax payer money can pay for a child to go to a private religious school or to be homeschooled. They are generally anti-public schools and often warn of the gay agenda coming for our kids. Lately their action alerts involve opposing the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

The Heritage Foundation is a Conservative think tank whose goal is to promote Conservative policy.

Liberty University is a Christian university that was founded by Jerry Falwell. (They were in the news last year for essentially disbanding their college Democrats club by claiming the the Democratic Party was directly opposed to Christian doctrine. The club was reinstated after national outcry. They also made some waves when it was revealed that the head of their seminary may have been lying about his extremist Muslim upbringing. He is no longer the head, but still employed by the University and also spoke at the Values Voters Summit.) The school has a policy called "The Liberty Way" which sets guidelines for student behavior. They have a policy of mandatory random drug testing. The dress code forbids men from having hair longer than the middle of their ear and forbids both men and women from dressing in a "counter cultural manner" however the school chooses to define that. Students cannot watch "R" rated movies, go dancing, engage in any physical contact beyond hand holding, participate in unauthorized demonstrations, or be alone with a member of the opposite sex in an off campus residence.

All that to say, these are Michele Bachmann's people. This is where she is most comfortable and it shows in her speech.

Feel free to watch if you'd like. There's not a lot of new material here. A large portion of her speech is based off a Thomas Jefferson quote that most Jefferson scholars believe he never actually said. I'm not sure that she understands what the political term "negative rights" actually means. It actually has nothing to do with negating the government's power. (And it definitely doesn't have anything to do with whether or not the president flies in a personal chef.) Rather, negative rights are those rights that involve preventing someone from infringing on another's rights.

I love that election season is the time that no government official considers themselves a part of the government or a politician. There's a lot of bad mouthing of "Washington elites." She once again equates government intervention and assistance to a Ponzi scheme. Also, she claims that in WWII we battled German "U2" boats (at about 4:30 in the second video). This is not the first time she's claimed this. She keeps saying that in her story about the Dorchester. For the record, U2 is a well known Irish rock band. U-boats were German submarines.

This is her base. These are the types of people she depends on rallying to get the vote out. (If you live in her district, you may have already seen an example this in other years when the groups of home schooled children are out campaigning door to door on her behalf.) They love her. But I would argue they are mistaken when they claim that every liberal in the country is afraid of her.

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