Tag Archives: Mark Darr

Contradicting Brummett’s thoughts on 2014 Arkansas Governor race Part 1

John Brummett in his article “Prospects for 2014,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, March 27, 2012, (paywall) fears that potential governor Mark Darr “and his insurgent ilk, favorites of the Koch brothers, would shrink state government to lower taxes on the well-to-do, deregulate business and free poor people to navigate amid the lower taxes and unfettered commercial enterprises.”

Let us take Brummett’s conclusions and see if that is the type of world that we want to live in. Mark Darr wants to “free poor people to navigate amid the lower taxes and unfettered commercial enterprises.” I wonder what that would be like?

I love Milton Friedman’s film series “Free to Choose,” and if Mark Darr is the Tea Party type that John Brummett fears then he supports the type of world pictured by Milton Friedman. In that film series over and over it is shown that the ability to move from poor to rich is more abundant here than any other country in the world. This article below reminded me of that that.

Are Poor Really Helpless Without Government?

By Michael Medved


A version of this column appeared originally in THE DAILY BEAST.

Do proposed cuts in federal programs threaten to deny the downtrodden any chance for “a meaningful and productive life,” as claimed by one of the most prominent progressives in Congress?

The question is preposterous and the answer is obvious: long before Washington created such programs, millions of underprivileged citizens found ways to climb out of poverty and to build decent homes and brighter futures for their families.

But the office of Representative Andre Carson of Indiana issued a statement insisting that the “Tea Party agenda jeopardizes our most vulnerable and leaves them without the ability to improve their economic standing.” Jason Tomcsi, Carson’s official spokesman, made these claims in an e-mail to the press, attempting to explain previous remarks in which the Congressman told an approving crowd in Miami at a Congressional Black Caucus event that “some of them in Congress right now of this Tea Party movement would love to see you and me hanging on a tree.”

This outrageous accusation led Representative Alan West of Florida, one of two African-American Republicans in the House, to threaten to remove himself from the Congressional Black Caucus.

But while Carson’s office refused to apologize and stood behind the admittedly “strong language” in the charges of murderous Tea Party racism, their defense actually compounded the problem by insulting not just conservative activists, but smearing every American who receives federal assistance. To suggest that budget cuts would leave them “without the ability to improve their economic standing” suggests that recipients of government aid aren’t just “vulnerable” but helpless.

According to the official explanation, Carson’s “hanging on a tree” comment came “in response to frustration voiced by many in Miami and in his home district in Indianapolis regarding Congress’s inability to bolster the economy.”

Leaving aside the questionable notion that our political and economic system actually allows Congress to “bolster the economy”, the statement entered even more dubious territory by declaring: “We are talking about child nutrition, job creation, job training, housing assistance and Head Start, and this is just the beginning. A child without basic nutrition, secure housing, and quality education has no real chance at a meaningful and productive life.”

In other words, the many children who currently lack these advantages (despite lavish federal funding for programs meant to provide them) might as well give up, not only abandoning efforts to compete with kids from more fortunate backgrounds, but also renouncing all hopes for a life worth living.

Fortunately, Carson’s own grandmother – the late Congresswoman Julia Carson – never accepted that message. Born in Kentucky in 1938, long before the Civil Rights revolution or the costly Great Society programs her grandson now defends, she worked her way up to a job as a secretary in a union office, and then won a position in the Indiana Legislature.

My own grandfather, Harry Medved, had less success in the US after his 1910 immigration from Ukraine. He worked as a barrel-maker his entire life but somehow managed to raise a son (my father) who made his way through college and graduate school. My grandparents (who I remember vividly) would have laughed at the notion that they depended on generous funding from governmental bureaucracies for the chance they seized to create a “meaningful and productive life.”

On most occasions when Democrats and Republicans fight over the value of federal anti-poverty efforts they argue about the effectiveness of these programs. Many conservatives believe that these well-intentioned initiatives often do more damage than good because they foster a sense of dependence and discourage individual initiative and accountability, while most liberals insist that government plays a useful role in assisting the poor. But Carson’s statement suggesting that disadvantaged families are hopeless and helpless without Washington’s sustaining, life-giving hand–that they can’t possibly move ahead on their own without federal intervention–conveys a dismissive view of the poor that might be considered racist and bigoted had it come from a white conservative.

Moreover, the wildly exaggerated view of government’s power to transform lives, and the sad contention that the impoverished can’t possibly change their circumstances with any other form of aid, combine to illustrate the profound truth in an observation by best-selling author and radio host, Rabbi Daniel Lapin. “The Democratic Party is filled with ardent idealists who have decided to worship the little g – government – and feel uncomfortable with any worship of the big G – God.”

Though Congressman Carson presents himself as a devout Muslim, his recent comments leave no doubt as to which “g” inspires his deepest faith and most fervent prayers.

Michael Medved

Michael Medved’s daily syndicated radio talk show reaches one of the largest national audiences every weekday between 3 and 6 PM, Eastern Time. Michael Medved is the author of eleven books, including the bestsellers What Really Happened to the Class of ’65?, Hollywood vs. America, Right TurnsThe Ten Big Lies About America and 5 Big Lies About American Business

Lt Gov. Mark Darr endorses Romney

I think that many evangelical Christians may have a problem with supporting Mitt Romney who is a Mormon. I think that Romney is a very good speaker and will beat President Obama easily. He is not my favorite candidate though. John Brummett rightly noted that this endorsement by Lt. Governor was sought after by Romney and it was a big deal. 


Jason Tolbert noted:

There is still a lot of campaigning to go. This time in 2007, Rudy Giuliani was the front-runner with Fred Thompson close behind. The eventual nominee, John McCain, was a distant third

Here is a story and video by Jason Tolbert:

Lieutenant Governor Mark Darr announced today his endorsement of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney for President.  Darr made the announcement at the Little Rock Political Animal’s Club luncheon, which was held at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion. The endorsement is the first high-profile endorsement for Romney in the Natural State, although more will likely follow.  (Update – Congressman Tim Griffin announced his endorsement about the same time as Darr.)

“I think Arkansas is looking for its leaders to be bold and want to know where they stand on the issues and who they do or do not support,” said Darr when asked why he is endorsing this early in the primary. “Because the field of candidates needs to begin to narrow, I have decided who I am going to support and felt now was the time to make that public.”

Darr stated that he believes that Romney “gives us our best chance of defeating President Obama.”

“I like that he has real-world business knowledge. He’s not just a politician, he’s owned businesses. I think he has stood out during the debates as someone who is well-versed on the issues. He has shown that he can go toe-to-toe with the President. I believe he will be able to appeal to and pull support from other parts of the country that other candidates might not. He also has shown that he can put together the necessary resources to mount a successful campaign,” said Darr.

In June, 20 Arkansas legislators formed “Arkansans for Rick Perry” encouraging the Texas Governor to get in the race.  Darr was part of a group from Arkansas that traveled to Austin to meet with Perry in late July. In August, Perry took the Arkansas legislators’ advice as well as others from around the country unhappy with the current field of Presidential contenders and jumped in the race. He immediately shot up to the top of the polls and became the frontrunner; however, after a lackluster performance at a debate last month in Florida and a distant second place showing in the Florida straw poll a few days later, his bubble seemed to burst and former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain’s stock started to rise.

“I think Governor Perry is a great man and a great governor for Texas, but from what I’ve seen in the campaign so far, I think Governor Romney is better prepared to take on the President and win,” said Darr when asked why he went with Romney over Perry.

Rep. David Sanders with Arkansas for Rick Perry said he is sticking with Perry in spite of his recent stumbles pointing out that he is “a proven job creator” in Texas and just announced today that he has raised $17 million.

“Campaigns are long enterprises. There are going to be starts and stops and bumps in the road,” said Sanders. “To not acknowledge that there have been some bumps along the way would be to ignore reality. But I feel confident in his ability to get things going, and again, I think the message and record is so compelling. Some of the items have been substantive while some have been nitpicky but I think the record and the message overshadow that.”