Patrick Von Dohlen

Category: Uncategorized

The Republican Party of Texas convention in San Antonio a success 

The Republican Party of Texas convention in San Antonio a success 

Last week, thousands of conservative activists across the Lone Star State gathered in San Antonio for one of the largest political gatherings in the world: the Republican Party of Texas 2018 Convention. In fact, the RPT convention is larger than even the National Republican Party convention.

With such a massive convention successfully executed in San Antonio without any major problems, do you think the City of San Antonio should reconsider hosting the Republican National Convention? Respond to this article if you think City Council should reconsider now that it has been shown that San Antonio is a good host city, and the republican party has shown itself to be respectful.

Here are the results of our survey on this topic:

To read more from San Antonio Express News, click here.

Remember Google Fiber Huts? Remember Haskin Park!

Remember Google Fiber Huts? Remember Haskin Park!

In August 2016 the City Manager, via the City’s Development Services Department, ignored neighborhoods and circumvented the Planning, Zoning and HDRC Commissions by illegally issuing building permits for the installation of Google Fiber Huts in multiple San Antonio City Parks! The deal, pushed by former mayor Julian Castro, leased public park land to Google Fiber, a private for profit developer. Google Fiber was going to be San Antonio’s savior and would solve all types of social and economic problems. Circumventing and ignoring City Ordinances Fiber Huts were allowed to be installed in Haskin Park and West End Park. Neighbors near Haskin Park began to challenge the city over the illegal permits in Haskin Park and planned installations in six other San Antonio Parks.

At the same time the Haskin Park neighbors were battleing the City Manager over the illegal installations the 2017 Bond for $850 million was being pushed by the City leaders. In an effort to get the neighbors to shut up and accept the Fiber Hut in Haskin Park, it was suggested that Haskin Park would be line-itemed for $300,000 of improvements in the 2017 Bond. If the Bond passed Haskin Park was guaranteed the money. As an added incentive to accept the Fiber Hut, the City promised to spend another $200,000 from General Funds to build a new playground in the park. A total of $500,000 of taxpayer money was going to be spent on a pocket park less than one acre in size – if the neighbors would only shut up and accept the Fiber Hut.

The voters approved the 2017 Bond and the Haskin Park playground was replaced yet the neighborhood continued to fight the illegal installation. In September of 2017, almost one year after installation of the Hut, the City acknowledged their mistakes and required the Google Fiber Hut to be removed from Haskin Park along with cancelling eight other planned Hut locations.

Fast forward one more year to June 2018, the San Antonio City Council, via Ordinance, finalized the approval of a $201,000 contract for landscaping in Haskin Park as part of the $300,000 Bond Award. If you are wondering what happened to the remaining $100,000, approximately $35,000 was spent on Architecture & Engineering and approximately $20,000 was set in reserve for contingencies.

So where is the remaining $45,000 (15%) of the $300,000 Bond you ask? Answer: The City Manager’s Office apparently charges a 15% Management fee on all the Bond Money for salaries, etc to oversee the process. Sounds high for soliciting bids and hiring a Contractor. The question remains ….Where does this money actually go and how is it spent despite it being designated for a specific project? It is reported that this same fifteen percent (15%) fee is charged to all the projects in the 2017 Bond Package of $850 Million which would equate to more than $120 million…… just to manage spending the Bond Funds. Nice Work!

Tribute to Krauthammer and Reagan: The Reagan Doctrine

Tribute to Krauthammer and Reagan: The Reagan Doctrine

The Reagan Doctrine

“We must not break faith with those who are risking their lives on every continent from Afghanistan to Nicaragua to defy Soviet-supported aggression and secure rights which have been ours from birth . . . Support for freedom fighters is self-defense.”

–President Reagan, in the State of the Union, February 1985

Ronald Reagan is the master of the new idea, and has built the most successful political career in a half-century launching one after another. His list of credits includes small government (Barry Goldwater having tried, and failed, with it first), supply-side economics and strategic defense (Star Wars). These radically changed the terms of debate on the welfare state, economic theory and nuclear strategy. All that was left for him to turn on its head was accepted thinking on geopolitics. Now he has done that too. He has produced the Reagan Doctrine.

You may not have noticed. Doctrines, like submarines, tend to be launched with fanfare. The Monroe Doctrine was instantly recognized, on both sides of the Atlantic, as a historic declaration; the Truman Doctrine was unveiled in a dramatic address to a joint session of Congress; and when President Carter announced a new aggressive Persian Gulf policy on Jan. 23, 1980, by the next morning the New York Times had dubbed it “the Carter Doctrine.” President Reagan saw fit to bury his doctrine in his 1985 State of the Union address beneath the balanced budget amendment, school prayer and the line-item veto. That he decided to make his a footnote is as much a tribute to Mr. Reagan’s prudence as to his modesty. Truly new ideas–what Democrats lie awake at night dreaming of–are as risky as they are rare. This one has already precipitated a storm.

The Reagan Doctrine proclaims overt and unashamed American support for anti- Communist revolution. The grounds are justice, necessity and democratic tradition. Justice, said the President in his Feb. 16 radio address, because these revolutionaries are “fighting for an end to tyranny.” Necessity, said Secretary of State George Shultz in a subsequent address in San Francisco, because if these “freedom fighters” are defeated, their countries will be irrevocably lost behind an Iron Curtain of Soviet domination. And democratic tradition, said the President, because to support “our brothers” in revolution is to continue–“in Afghanistan, in Ethiopia, Cambodia, Angola . . . (and) Nicaragua”–200 years of American support for “Simon Bolivar . . . the Polish patriots, the French Resistance and others seeking freedom.”

That tradition ended abruptly with Viet Nam. It is true that President Carter sent arms to the Afghan rebels and that Congress concurred. Congress has also gone along with economic aid to the non-Communist resistance in Cambodia. However, since the Clark Amendment of 1976 prohibiting aid to anti-Marxist fighters in Angola, Congress has refused to support war against indigenous Communist dictatorships, no matter how heavily supported by the Soviet Union or its proxies. President Reagan’s program of CIA support for the Nicaraguan contras, who are not fighting foreign occupation, broke post-Viet Nam precedent. At first, and for three long years, that new policy was given the flimsiest of justifications: interdicting supplies to the Salvadoran guerrillas. The Reagan Doctrine drops the fig leaf. It is intended to establish a new, firmer–a doctrinal–foundation for such support by declaring equally worthy all armed resistance to Communism, whether foreign or indigenously imposed.

To interpret the Reagan Doctrine as merely a puffed-up rationale for Nicaraguan policy is like calling the Truman Doctrine a cover for a new Greek and Turkish policy. In both cases, the principles established have a much more profound implication.

The Truman Doctrine set out the basic foreign policy axiom of the postwar era: containment. With J.F.K.’s pledge to “bear any burden . . . to assure . . . the success of liberty,” the idea of containment reached its most expansive and consensually accepted stage. With Viet Nam, the consensus and the expansiveness collapsed. Since then the U.S. has oscillated, at times erratically, between different approaches–different doctrines–for defending its ideals and its interests.

The Reagan Doctrine is the third such attempt since Viet Nam. The first was the Nixon Doctrine: relying on friendly regimes to police their regions. Unfortunately, the jewel in the crown of this theory was the Shah of Iran. Like him, it was retired in 1979 to a small Panamanian island. Next came the Carter Doctrine, declaring a return to unilateral American action, if necessary, in defense of Western interests. That doctrine rested on the emergence of a rapid deployment force. Unfortunately, the force turned out neither rapid nor deployable. It enjoys a vigorous theoretical existence in southern Florida, whence it is poorly situated to repel the Red Army.

If regional powers prove unstable, and projected American power unreliable, what then? It is a precious irony that the answer to that question has been suggested to Americans by a band of fanatical Islamic warriors in Afghanistan. Unaware of their historic contribution to the theory of containment, they took on the Soviet army, made it bleed and slowed its march to the more coveted goal, the warm waters of the Persian Gulf.

This insurgency, and those in Cambodia, Angola and Nicaragua, pointed to a new form of containment, a kind of ex post facto containment: harassment of Soviet expansionism at the limits of empire. There is an echo here of the old 1950s right-wing idea of “rolling back” Communism. But with a difference. This is not the reckless–and toothless–call for reclaiming the core Soviet possessions in Eastern Europe, which the Soviets claim for self-defense and, more important, which they are prepared to use the most extreme means to retain. This is a challenge to the peripheral acquisitions of empire.

The Brezhnev Doctrine proclaimed in 1968 that the Soviet sphere only expands. The Reagan Doctrine is meant as its antithesis. It declares that the U.S. will work at the periphery to reverse that expansion. How? Like the Nixon Doctrine, it turns to proxies. Unlike the Nixon Doctrine, it supports not the status quo but revolution.

And that makes it so hard for both left and right to digest. For the left it seems all quite paradoxical, and hypocritical: the Administration denounces Salvadoran guerrillas for blowing up power stations and attacking villages, while at the same time it supports Nicaraguan guerrillas who are doing the same thing only a few miles away. But the idea that intellectual honesty requires one to be for or against all revolution is absurd. You judge a revolution, as you do any other political phenomenon, by what it stands for. Suppose you believe that justice was on the side of the central government in the American Civil War. Does that commit you to oppose the Paris Commune of 1870 or the Hungarian revolution of 1956? In Salvador, the rebels want to overthrow the President, a Christian Democrat. In Nicaragua, the rebels want to overthrow the President, a Marxist-Leninist. To judge rebels by who they are and what they fight for, and against, is not a political morality of convenience. It is simple logic.

On the right, the idea of supporting revolution is equally hard to accept, though for different reasons. Conservatives may find it easier to support revolution in practice than in theory. This is already obvious from their choice of words. Reagan finds it hard to call the good guys rebels. Instead, he insists on calling them “freedom fighters,” a heavy, inconvenient term, with an unmistakable socialist-realist ring. “Freedom fighters” practically announces itself as a term of bias. Rebels, Mr. President. With practice, it will get easier to say.

Language, however, is the easier problem facing the Reagan Doctrine. Morality poses thornier ones. By what right does the U.S. take sides in foreign civil wars? What about sovereignty? What about international law?

The President may be revolutionary, but he is not reckless. To ensure that he does not stray too far from current thinking, he appends a reference to international law: “Support for freedom fighters is self-defense and totally consistent with the OAS and U.N. charters.”

This, it must be admitted, is stretching things. There are two difficulties. How can one plausibly argue that the success of Islamic rebels in Afghanistan is a form of self-defense of the U.S.? The Nicaraguan contras, perhaps, might qualify under a generous interpretation of collective security. But Cambodian rebels? Angolans? Eritreans?

The second problem is that if international law stands for anything, it stands for the idea that sovereignty is sacred. Rebels, by definition, do not have it. The governments they fight, no matter how tyrannous, do. How, ask congressional critics, can one justify violating the sovereignty of other countries by helping overthrow the legitimate government?

The answer must begin with cases. Consider Uganda under Idi Amin. Amin was the legitimate ruler when Tanzania invaded and overthrew him. The Tanzanians might say that this was in response to Ugandan border incursions, but Amin had ordered his troops withdrawn more than a month before Tanzania’s action. In any case, if repelling a trespass at the border was the problem, Tanzania should have stopped there. It hardly had to drive to Kampala and install the leader of its choice. Tanzania’s action, ridding the world of Amin, was a violation of Ugandan sovereignty. It is hard to see how it can be said to be wrong.

Morally speaking–and congressional critics of the Reagan Doctrine are speaking morally, above all–sovereignty cannot be absolute. Indeed, it is not a moral category at all. Why must it be accorded respect, moral respect, in cases where it protects truly awful regimes? The Nazis were the legitimate government of Germany. That does not mean that one is justified in overthrowing any government one does not like. It does mean that one has to face the crucial question: How awful must a government be before it forfeits the moral protection of sovereignty and before justice permits its violent removal?

In Congress today there is almost no opposition to supporting Afghan and (non-Communist) Cambodian rebels. There is a consensus that resistance to invasion warrants support. But by what logic should support be denied to those fighting indigenous tyranny? It seems curious to decide the morality of a cause on the basis of the address of its chief oppressors.

There are more relevant criteria. First, the nature of the oppression and the purposes of those fighting it. The difference between El Salvador and Nicaragua is that in Salvador, a fledgling democracy is under attack from avowed Marxist-Leninists. In Nicaragua, a fledgling totalitarianism is under attack by a mixture of forces, most of which not only are pledged to democracy and pluralism but fought for just those goals in the original revolution against Somoza.

A second important distinction is whether the insurgency is an authentic popular movement or a proxy force cobbled together by a great power for reasons of realpolitik. In both Salvador and Nicaragua, the governments say their opponents are puppets of different imperialisms. In neither case does the charge stick. Consider Nicaragua. As no less a democrat than Arturo Cruz, leader of the (nonviolent) opposition, writes, the contras–“the revolt of Nicaraguans against oppression by other Nicaraguans”–now represent an authentic “social movement.” Indeed, they are more than 12,000 strong and growing, even after the cutoff of American aid.

If a revolution is both popular and democratic, it is hard to see the moral objection to extending it support. But there is a practical objection: if every country decided for itself which revolutions to support, there would be chaos. What about the prudential reasons for respecting sovereignty and international law?

This argument has the virtue of recognizing that international law is not moral law but an arrangement of convenience: like the social contract in civil society, it is a way to keep the peace. This argument has the vice, however, of ignoring the fact that unlike the domestic social contract, international law lacks an enforcer. It depends on reciprocal observance. If one country breaks the rules at will, then later claims its protection, what–apart from habit and cowardice–can possibly oblige other countries to honor that claim?

The idea that international law must be a reciprocal arrangement or none at all is not new. As Churchill said to Parliament in 1940, “Germany is to gain one set of advantages by breaking all the (neutrality) rules (upon the seas) . . . and then go on and gain another set of advantages through insisting, whenever it suits her, upon the strictest interpretation of the international code she has torn to pieces.” He added, “It is not at all odd that His Majesty’s government are getting rather tired of it. I am getting rather tired of it myself.”

So is today’s American Government. There is something faintly comical about Nicaragua going to the World Court to accuse the U.S. of fomenting revolution and interfering in its affairs, when for years the Salvadoran revolution was quite openly headquartered in Managua–and not for a shortage of housing in the Salvadoran jungles. The Reagan Doctrine is more radical than it pretends to be. It pretends that support for democratic rebels is “self-defense” and sanctioned by international law. That case is weak. The real case rests instead on other premises: that to be constrained from supporting freedom by an excessive concern for sovereignty (and a unilateral concern, at that) is neither especially moral nor prudent. The West, of late, has taken to hiding behind parchment barriers as an excuse for inaction when oppressed democrats beg for help. The Reagan Doctrine, while still hiding a bit, announces an end to inaction.

Only a few months ago, a Nicaraguan friend, an exSandinista who still speaks their language, said in near despair that the struggle of democrats around the world was doomed by the absence in the West of what he called “democratic militance.” The Reagan Doctrine represents a first step toward its restoration.

Here’s the Key to Making Trump’s Immigration Executive Order Work

Here’s the Key to Making Trump’s Immigration Executive Order Work

It might take a while for the Open Border crowd to determine how to respond to this. It was a brilliant strategy by the President because it took away their complaint but didn’t give them the amnesty they really want. When the courts quash it, the President will blame the other branches of gov’t.

Learning curve could shorten depending if the ACLU is going to sue.

To read more from PoliZette, click here.

“The Best Man” not the best for our children

“The Best Man” not the best for our children

Article contributed by guest writer and friend of D9NN

This past spring my wife and I were shocked to learn that 3rd graders in my daughter’s elementary school in NISD were being shown a trailer on “The Best Man” by Richard Peck. This book is about an elementary school boy who’s male veteran teacher “falls in love” with and “marries” the student’s uncle. The student is the best man in the wedding. The trailer and book were being promoted because the book was part of the Texas Bluebonnet Award program. The program selects 20 books every year based on, “student interests, relevant content, reputable reviews, and literary quality.” School’s voluntarily participate in the program, but as a participant they must introduce and make available all the titles in the program. Our elementary school chose to participate in the program.

After learning of the showing, several parents, including myself, reached out to the principal and provided pointed feedback that this content was unacceptable for the 3rd grade level. I personally requested that any future content or instruction of this nature be shared with parents first to allow parent’s the opportunity to remove their children from the instruction. Our principal assured me she would provide that notice in the future.

This is just another clear example that traditional family values are under attack. Parents must be vigilant and monitor what their children are being exposed to in school and afterschool programs. Also, parents need to speak up when they do find something objectionable. Nearly all our friends had concerns about the book and trailer being shown, but only a handful had the courage to address it with the school administrators. We must have the moral courage to stand up for our values and protect our children. They are counting on us.

Please consider contacting the NISD Board of Trustees about this issue.

m.chumbley's picture

M’Lissa M. Chumbley
President
District 3

6718 Forest Haven
San Antonio, TX 78240
Phone: (210) 681-6341
Email: [email protected]

c. harle's picture

Carol Harle, Ph.D.
Vice President
District 6

423 Cliffside Dr.
San Antonio, Texas 78231
Phone: (210) 954-4206
Email: [email protected]

g.lopez's picture

Gerald B. Lopez
Secretary
District 2

5900 Evers Road
San Antonio, TX 78238
Phone: (210) 247-8356
Email: [email protected]

j.medina's picture

Joseph H. Medina
Trustee
District 1

11719 Rousseau
San Antonio, Texas 78251
Phone: (210) 784-6165
Email: [email protected]

 

Robert Blount, Jr.
Trustee
District 4

13450 Sunnyview Trails
San Antonio, TX 78253
Phone: (210) 334-1320
Email: [email protected]

k.reed's picture

Katie N. Reed
Trustee
District 5

7317 Ashton Place
San Antonio, TX 78229
Phone: (210) 308-5555
Email: [email protected]

k.freeman's picture

Karen Freeman
Trustee
District 7

5900 Evers Rd.
San Antonio, Texas 78238
Phone: (210) 413-5736
Email:[email protected]

‘Freedom city’? Going beyond ‘sanctuary,’ Austin, Texas, vows to curtail arrests

‘Freedom city’? Going beyond ‘sanctuary,’ Austin, Texas, vows to curtail arrests

Really, Austin?

How does the city of Austin help its citizens with the new declaration of lawlessness in a city, that states that they will not cooperate with the Federal Government?

The White House has said dozens of sanctuary cities and counties in the country are breaking federal law for not fully cooperating with immigration authorities and has threatened to withhold public safety grants from them.

The Texas governor has shared a similar argument and echoed Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions in his belief that sanctuary cities promote crime.

Amid the controversy over sanctuary cities, Austin this month took its fight against strict immigration law enforcement a step further by declaring itself to be the first “Freedom City” in Texas.

City Council members unanimously passed two resolutions last week that will restrict police attempts to question immigrants about their status and curtail arrests for nonviolent crimes.

To read more from the LA Times, click here.

Council approves resolution opposing census citizenship question

Council approves resolution opposing census citizenship question

San Antonio City Council has imprudently approved the resolution opposing the census citizenship question. This is more evidence that the current SA Mayor & City Council are more concerned about special interest groups and pleasing the United Nations and UNESCO World Heritage (after the World Refugee Day 2018) over the majority of US citizens and Texas heritage.

To read more from San Antonio Express News, click here.