Friday, March 15, 2019

No, You Don't Want Beto for POTUS Either

Although I have not lived in El Paso for over four years, I still have an El Paso, Texas area code so I get calls and texts specific to the area.  One of these came in last summer from  Beto O'Rourke's campaign.  The text wanted to know whether I was going to vote for O'Rourke or Cruz.  I replied with the same message that I gave the young woman who came to my door on a different weekend--I know Beto.  I have met him personally.  And I wouldn't vote for him for dog catcher.
 
The Texas Senate race that Beto lost was the most expensive race in history. Although he failed to secure the Senate seat, he secured a lot of national attention and turned himself into a left-wing celebrity.  He was a frequent guest of the late-night talk shows and the subject of extensive media coverage on both the left and the right. 

Yesterday, he announced that he is running for president in 2020.  What many people don't understand is that Beto has always been running for President of the United States. His is no grassroots effort--he has been planning this since he first ran for city council.  And yet, I talk to people every day who buy into his "man of the people, everyman routine."   As an ex-patriot El Pasoan I have a different perspective than most Americans, so I am taking this opportunity to share why I would not ever vote for Beto.
 
To have perspective about Beto's campaign, you have to understand that El Paso is very different ideologically than most of Texas.  El Paso has not experienced the "Texas miracle" partly because El Paso does not embrace the mindset that created that miracle.  El Paso is a liberal Democrat stronghold with a majority Hispanic population.  Ronald Reagan was completely wrong when he said that Hispanics were a natural fit for the Republican party because they shared the social values of that Republicans hold dear.  On some social issues individual Hispanics may agree with Republicans, and individual Hispanics are Republicans, but the predominate Hispanic culture leans much more toward the liberal Democrat ideal of powerful, centralized government and high taxation.  That is the governing model of Latin American countries, and it is the governing model that El Pasoans prefer.  As with many progressive liberals, many of the people in El Paso take an "it's fine for thee but not for me" approach to the repressive policies they advocate for everyone else.  In other words, the city favors numerous laws that are selectively enforced and obeyed by other people--not the elites. 
 
Beto's father was county judge Pat O'Rourke, who was found in 1984 to have a bag of "white powder" in his car during a traffic stop.  The deputy who found the white powder was ordered to destroy it without any investigation or analysis. O'Rourke served out the rest of his term without prosecution, but the traffic stop and suspicions about O'Rourke's drug use made the local news (and appeared in a New York Times story from the era), and he did not seek re-election when that term ended. Pat O'Rourke was killed in 2001 by a motorist while biking in El Paso. 
 
Beto's mother, Melissa O'Rourke, owned Charlotte's--a high-priced furniture boutique.  In 2010 the company pleaded guilty to "restructuring" cash payments to avoid paying taxes to the IRS.  Between 2005 and 2006, Charlotte's accepted $631,000 from an unnamed customer. According to news reports, the customer structured the transactions so that each amount was under $10,000--for example one amount of $50,000 was structured as 18 payments under $10,000 each with multiple receipts issued under multiple names.  Charlotte's was ordered to pay $250,000 restitution and was put on probation for 5 years.  Melissa O'Rourke herself was never charged--according to a news story by KVIA-TV she claimed not to understand that any laws were being broken and, in her case, ignorance of the law proved to be a very adequate excuse. 
 
This family, and the city that rewarded them, gave birth to Beto.  His political career began in a place where the population is constantly seeking a patron--a Spanish word which carries the concept of a wealthy landowner who typically dominates and controls those around him while bestowing favors on those he chooses.  He understands the class envy and anger over income inequality that the national media is constantly pushing because as a child of El Paso he grew up with this mindset and he knows how to manipulate it for his own benefit.  He understands that socialism allows for abusive elites to grab power and monopolize everything for themselves and their own benefit because El Paso has repeatedly embraced leaders who have done exactly that. And he truly understands the socialist progressive policies of the new Democrat party because these principles have been near and dear to the hearts of El Pasoans for a long time.
  
So before you get invested in his campaign, here are a few things you should know about Beto:
  1. He is not a champion of  the people with a grassroots campaign of little folks who are just looking for change.  Beto is not only the child of El Paso elites, he is the son-in-law of billionaire developer Bill Sanders.  Sanders is originally from El Paso, but he spent time in Chicago with the LaSalle Group. When Sanders did return to El Paso, he set up a number of elite organizations that operated largely in secret with the goal of redeveloping the city using eminent domain.
  2. As city councilman, Beto supported taking private property (both homes and businesses) to further the plans of his father-in-law's development projects, both through the Paso del Norte Group and the BorderPlex.  He argued at the time that there was no conflict of interest in his votes to support seizing private property through eminent domain to turn over to developers (his wife's dad) because neither he nor his family could profit from his activities.  (Sanders had promised to donate any profits from his REIT, Paso del Norte Group, to charity.) 
  3. As city councilman, Beto supported bills that were difficult and burdensome to small business owners and private property owners, including a landscape ordinance that increased the cost of property ownership for commercial property owners and an ordinance that fined commercial property owners hundreds of dollars a day for failure to remove a dead tree from their property.  On behalf of the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce I spoke to City Council personally regarding that last ordinance and the hardship it worked on small business owners, and Beto responded by sneering that he was tired of people getting in the way of the city's progress.  Mind you that all of this took place during the Great Recession, when many business owners in El Paso were struggling just to keep the lights on.  In a city that constantly beats the drum that both it and its people are poor, Beto helped ram through bills that made it harder for small business people and small property owners to survive and to hang on to whatever they had managed to acquire.
  4. There is a reason that he brags about having an F score card from the NRA.  Again, to understand why this is a point of pride for a former Senatorial candidate in Texas, where God and guns are prized, you need to understand El Paso.  My sister-in-law was born in Guadelajara, Mexico.  Right after she married my brother, she walked into the room where he was cleaning his guns.  Instinctively she folded her hands behind her back so that she would not touch the guns because as a child of Mexico she had been taught that, "to touch a gun is to touch the devil."  El Paso is sister city of Juarez, Mexico and Mexico has harsh gun control laws.  These laws have had the net result of transforming Mexico into a society where the most violent criminals rule the society through guns and intimidation and law-abiding people are unarmed.  Nevertheless, anti-gun sentiments are very strong there.
  5. Although he has benefitted hugely from familial connection to a powerful elitist developer, Beto champions environmentalism, green energy and "smart" development.  He took several opportunities to ride his bike to work when he was city councilman to demonstrate to El Pasoans that individual cars are not the best form of transportation.  He championed bike paths and biking in general as a tribute to his father who was killed while bicycling down a busy street.  This dedication to all things "green" fits nicely into the elitist Agenda 21 mindset of Beto and his wealthy donor friends.
  6. He really does support open borders.  In El Paso, cross-border commerce is essential to the city's economy.  The fastest way to start a fight in the city is to stand the heart of downtown and yell "border security."  There is NO support in El Paso for anything except a completely porous border that allows anyone who wants to do so to drift in and out of the city at will.
  7. Beto and his friends have always had plans for him that go far beyond the Senate.  That was actually apparent years ago when he ran against former Congressman Silvestre Reyes.  Reyes had been a very popular Democrat Congressman but his reputation was tarnished with corruption charges that he was illegally enriching his own family on the taxpayer dime.  Beto ran for Congress and won the seat partly because Reyes was in the middle of a scandal and partly because Reyes did not take him seriously.  But even then, anyone paying attention could see that the long-term goal was to run him for president of the United States.  That is much more apparent now, as the National Review reports in last summer's Morning Jolt:
"And that’s apparently all he needs! Peter Hamby is writing in Vanity Fair that O’Rourke should be discussed as a potential 2020 Democratic presidential candidate: Whether he wins or loses his race — and yes, even if he loses — O’Rourke should be included in every conversation about the 2020 Democratic primary. That’s because, unlike most of the paint-by-numbers politicians in his party, O’Rourke actually understands how politics should be conducted in the Donald Trump era: authentic, full of energy, stripped of consultant-driven sterility, and waged at all times with a social-media-primed video screen in mind."
There are a lot of words I could use to describe Beto O'Rourke, but "authentic" certainly isn't one of them.  In fact, he is the same mass of contradictions and phoniness that has come to define modern day liberalism--the rich elitist pretending to be one of the poor unwashed masses fighting income inequality and decrying the 1%.
Texas rejected Beto because at the end of the day, his positions were just too far out of step with the rest of the state.  But Texas is not the US.  In many states, Beto's push to criminalize guns and legalize drugs will play very well.  This is one reason the media is so kind to him--they see him as a modern JFK who can sell progressive ideas to an unsuspecting public which does not fully understand the implications of those ideas.  But hopefully the rest of the country can see through this scam and reject both the man and the message.

 Alexandra Swann's novel W: The Set, incorporates her novels The Planner and The Chosen which tell the story of  an out-of-control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21 and NDAA.  The set is available on Kindle. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

 

 

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Agenda 21 Today: Now Known as Agenda 2030 or The Green New Deal

For the past few months I have been getting a lot of emails and direct messages asking me about the video that I recorded 6 years ago titled Agenda 21: Bankrupting America Into Utopia One City at a Time.  The video was recorded at a church in May of 2013 and explained the UN Sustainable Development plan called Agenda 21, its national and international goals, and how it was being implemented in cities around the U.S.
 
The most common question that I receive from people who have watched the video is, "What is happening now?"
 
Those who have seen the video may recall that I mentioned that Agenda 21 is a soft treaty--meaning that it was never ratified by the U.S. Senate, although its goals have been lauded by every president since George H.W. Bush and both parties have worked to realize those goals.
 
On September 27, 2015, the U.N adopted a new set of policy documents to expand on the goals of Agenda 21.  This new policy document, known as 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, outlined the goals that the UN set for mankind to achieve by 2030.  The complete text of the UN 2030 Agenda is available here.  There are 17 major goals in the 2030 agenda.  These range from the impossibly utopian--goal number 1 for example which is to end poverty in all its forms everywhere, or goal 5.1: to end all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere--to the familiar social engineering goals such as goal 8--to promote sustained and inclusive sustainable economic growth and full and productive employment and decent work for all. Interestingly, this policy document went into effect January 1, 2016 as a blueprint to guide the world's behavior for the next fifteen years. I have listed below all seventeen goals to be implemented on a global scale by 2030:
 
Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere
Goal 2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
Goal 3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well being for all at all ages
Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
Goal 6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
Goal 7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
Goal 8. Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
Goal 9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation
Goal 10. Reduce inequality within and among countries
Goal 11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
Goal 12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
Goal 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development
Goal 15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
Goal 16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
Goal 17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development
 
We might note that only an all-powerful central one-world government would have the power to accomplish these seventeen goals and that in the absence of a one-world government, only an all- powerful central local government would have the power to implement these locally.  These seventeen goals speak to every part of human life--how we live, where we live, where we go, with whom we interact, what we eat, what we own and what we believe. 
 
In America we know 2030 Agenda by the term the Green New Deal and its most outspoken champions are media darlings.  They passionately tell us that we must fight climate change with the same passion that we fought World War II. That passion comes directly out of the UN policy documents.  The introduction to the 2030 Agenda states, "We can be the first generation to succeed in ending poverty; just as we may be the last to have a chance of saving the planet. The world will be a better place in 2030 if we succeed in our objectives."
 
Over the next few weeks we will take a look at each of these 17 goals and the practical application as the "solutions" are playing out in public policy right now where they are championed by a new crop of young politicians who believe wholeheartedly that big global government is the savior of the world.
 
Alexandra Swann's novel W: The Set, incorporates her novels The Planner and The Chosen which tell the story of  an out-of-control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21 and NDAA.  The set is available on Kindle. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.
 
 

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Search and Rescue

For the Son of Man has come to seek and save that which was lost”  Luke 19:10 KJV  

The end of every year is a fitting time to take stock of our lives.  We count our failures and successes, our blessings and our losses, and we look at where we have been and where we are going.

Many of us will make resolutions to change some aspect of our behavior in 2019.  We may want to lose weight, or get in better physical condition or to get promoted at work or develop better personal relationships, but for most of us when night falls on 2019, most of those resolutions will still be unfulfilled, shuffled forward to another year as we continue in a never-ending desire to become a better us.

We are working right now on the third installment of our Kinsman series.  Like the rest of the series, the third book, which will be ready for release next Christmas, follows characters who need to be rescued--either from the consequences of their own actions or the actions of others.  I smile when I read reviews of the first books saying that the books make them wish that "something like this could happen in real life."
We just finished celebrating Christmas, and we looked at nativities and sang songs of the child in the manger, but Christmas is so much more than a sweet story about a little baby who was born in a stable.  The cave in which Jesus was born is symbolic of the tomb where He was laid after his crucifixion, and the swaddling clothes in which his parents wrapped him represent the grave cloths.  He did not come to earth to be a good man or a good teacher—He was born to die for us in the greatest search and rescue operation of all time.  The God of the universe looked down and saw our lonely, lost, dysfunctional world—a world which we were powerless to change—and loved us so much that He sent His only Son to save us. Jesus is our Kinsman Redeemer who came to release our debt, and He extends to each of us the greatest invitation we will ever be offered. But for His invitation to impact us, we must recognize the immense opportunity which we have been offered; then we must be willing to accept it for ourselves and fully embrace our new life.  And we have to understand that as we accept the invitation for ourselves, we take on both the ability and the responsibility to impact and change the lives of others.

In the books, the invitations extended to the recipients warn that if the individual fails to respond no later than "precisely at midnight" the invitation will be considered to have been declined and "no further invitations will be extended."  In reality, God extends His priceless invitation to give us forgiveness, a new start and a new life repeatedly throughout our lifetimes, but, if we refuse to accept it, there is finally a day for all of us when the invitation is considered declined and no future invitations are available. 
As we start the New Year, I invite each of you to see 2019 as more than an opportunity for a new resolution.  This year can be a year for a rescue—a year for salvation and a new life.  Accept God’s invitation to you in 2019. “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
 
Alexandra and Joyce Swann's second installment in the Kinsman Series, Precisely at Midnight, was released October of 2017.  For more information, visit their website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

The God Who Saves

Once again the Christmas season is upon us.  I have spent the last few days enjoying Christmas lights in Plano,  Allen, and last night in Grapevine.  Grapevine boasts that it is "the Christmas Capital of Texas" and every inch of the historic downtown is a beautifully lit winter wonderland.   As always, I was surprised at how many people were there just to have somewhere to be.   Every parking lot was filled, so we, long with a lot of other people, parked in the parking lot of a church within walking distance of the downtown.  There were so many cars in the lot that for a minute I wondered if they were having Saturday night services, but as I looked more closely, I saw that the church was completely dark.  Though the parking lot was filled with people, they were not there for the church--like us, most of them probably had no association with that particular church at all.   We were all there for the lights and the ornaments and the food and the fun.

What I saw last night is an interesting parallel for our modern society.  In many parts of the U.S., the trappings of Christianity are still very present.  That is especially true in places like Dallas, where there is a church on every corner.  But the teachings of Christianity have largely been forgotten.  For most people raised in Christian homes, Christianity has become a faded memory more than a life-changing faith.  Nowhere do we see that more clearly than at Christmastime.  We live in a society that is surrounded by Christmas from before Thanksgiving until January 2 but that has largely forgotten the meaning behind the celebration.
The story of Christmas is not the story of a refugee family fleeing Palestine, nor is it the story of a struggling single mother.  The Christmas story is the story of how God fulfilled His promise to save a fallen world by being born as a human, living among us and dying on a cross.  Without Easter, Christmas has no meaning and without Christmas, Easter has no victory.

We live in a world of increasingly brutal violence and fear where people long for salvation.  The Psalmist tells us that salvation belongs to God (Psalm 3:8).  Salvation is proprietary--He owns it.  If we don't find it in Him, we don't find it all.
Christmas reminds us that salvation is not far away or out of reach.  Christmas reminds us that God so loved the world that He came to live as one of us.  The name Jesus, Yeshua, is the Hebrew word for salvation.  It is in this name that God has revealed Himself as the savior of the world.  If we don't experience salvation through Jesus, we don't find it all.

I invite each of you this Christmas to experience the God who saves.  He is strong enough to deliver you out of whatever circumstances you are facing.  And He is the only hope for this lost and fallen world.

Merry Christmas.

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me a Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her holiday series, Kinsman, is available in paperback and on Kindle. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.
 

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Give Thanks

Every Thanksgiving for as many years as I can remember, my mother had a tradition at Thanksgiving dinner. After my father prayed over the food, my mother asked each of us to name one thing that had happened in the last year that we were thankful for. As I got older, knowing that I would have to state what I was grateful for, I started thinking about the year a couple of weeks in advance of the holiday, and I found that even in difficult years, I had a lot to be thankful for. My mother's tradition has helped me to really think about the meaning of Thanksgiving each year.

Having come through a year of intense work, I am ready to list the things for which I am most grateful in 2017:

1. Beto O'Rourke is not Texas' newest Senator.  I know there were a lot of losses on November 6, but, knowing Beto and his real outlook on property rights and business, this win was really important.  Losing Beto, and keeping Texas red, is something worth celebrating.

2.  The economy is strong.  After so many years of lingering recession, seeing a year where many people are finding jobs and recovering financially is such a blessing.  Although interest rates are rising, rates remain comparatively low.  Many families are a lot better off than they have been for a  long time--and that's something for which all of us should be thankful.

3.  After another difficult year full of changes, I am once again working with great group of people in a great environment.  I feel very blessed to have these people in my life.

4.  At least here in DFW, the housing market remains strong and, compared to other major markets, prices remain affordable.

5. Frontier 2000 Media Group has produced a fourth book in the N series.  N: The Eye, was released in late October and continues the story of Petra and the Ns. Our first review was five stars. We are now finishing the third installment of Kinsman, Between Darkness and Dawn, although that will not release until fall of 2019.  Our work continues to grow.  Joyce writes the entire N Series, and she has written the lion's share of Between Darkness and Dawn.  I am incredibly grateful for our partnership and her faithfulness in every situation.

6. God hears us. No matter how dire our circumstances may appear or how desperate we may feel at times, we are never alone when we know the Lord.  I went through years of extreme sadness, loss and stress, and to not be in that place any more is a huge gift.  I spent much of this year--as I have spent the past decades, praying and working.  Much of what I prayed for and worked for is still left undone. But I trust that God has this and that He hears us when we call out to Him for help.  So I will continue to pray for America and ask Him to save this nation.  And I will continue to trust that He sees both the big circumstances facing our nation and the individual circumstances of our lives and that He cares equally about both.  "Don't worry about things--food, drink and clothes. For you already have life and a body--and they are more important than what to eat and what to wear. Look at the birds! They don't worry about what to eat--they don't need to sow or reap or store up food--for your heavenly Father feeds them...And why worry about your clothes? Look at the field lilies! They don't worry about theirs. Yet King Solomon in all his glory was not clothed as beautifully as they. And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won't He more surely care for you....So don't be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time." (Matthew 6: 25-34 TLB)

Now that's something we can be thankful for every day! Happy Thanksgiving.

Alexandra Swann is the author of No Regrets: How Homeschooling Earned me a Master's Degree at Age Sixteen and several other books. Her holiday series, Kinsman, is available in paperback and on Kindle. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Do You Want to See Something Really Scary?

This marks the seventh annual edition of "Do you want to see something really scary?" The recurring title of this post is, of course, a tribute to Twilight Zone--the movie. I did not see it--my mother was extremely strict and never allowed us to watch horror movies or even light comedy containing anything that smacked of the occult. But I remember my father coming back from a trip and telling us that he had been driving with his nephew on a dark, wood-lined road when his nephew told about the scene from Twilight Zone where a set of characters are in a car at night trying to scare each other. Finally, one of them says to the driver of the car, "Do you want to see something really scary?" When his friend agrees, he turns his face away, and when he turns back he has become a monster who kills the young man who is driving.

Over the past seven years that I have been writing this post, I have used it to highlight the scary problems in our political world.  And every year there is more and more to fear.  The real life events taking place in our country today are worse than any scary film plot ever hatched in the mind of any Hollywood producer.

Topping my scary list this year is the thought that Beto O'Rourke might actually become the next U.S. Senator from the State of Texas.  I don't have to watch TV or Internet ads or look at the media to form my opinion of Beto--I am from El Paso and have interacted with the man personally.  For more on that see last month's post giving some background on the guy.  Fortunately, a new NYT poll released a few days ago shows an 8 point lead for Cruz and Beto's new television campaign wreaks of frantic desperation, so this might be just a bad dream rather than a living nightmare.

Next up is the prospect of Nancy (we have to pass Obamacare to find out what's in it) Pelosi returning to her former position as House Speaker.  Since Pelosi refuses to give up her iron grip on power, she will certainly be returned to the post from which she can do the most possible damage to the country if Democrats retake the House next month.  My own opinion is that every Republican Congressional candidate should suspend all regular campaign ads during Halloween week and just run pictures of Pelosi with the name of their opponent and the tagline, "A vote for __________ puts Nancy Pelosi two heartbeats away from the Presidency."  I know that would motivate me.

Finally, one of the scariest events I have witnessed in recent history is the public flogging of Brett Kavanaugh by a group of leftists who tried to destroy his reputation without a shred of evidence.  Fortunately, Kavanaugh's nomination was confirmed a few minutes ago by the Senate, and that puts this whole ugly mess to bed--for now.  But the concept that any man can be accused of misconduct by any woman--with no corroboration or evidence--and that he is guilty unless he can prove that he is innocent shows a troubling change to who we are as a culture.  We are no longer concerned with fairness or decency.  We are no longer concerned with facts or evidence.  We are concerned with getting our own way--and we don't care who we destroy in order to get our own way. We have been polarized for a long time in this country, but the extreme ugliness of the Kavanaugh confirmation and the mob mentality that attempted to bully Senators into voting against Kavanaugh is a scary indication of how completely we have lost our moral compass.  Kavanaugh ordinarily would not have been my first choice--I would have preferred someone more conservative.  I would have at least preferred a nominee who self-identifies as a conservative. However, considering what he has just endured, I am very happy to see him confirmed.

The vileness of this whole confirmation process has turned my stomach--from the women outside the Senate chanting "shame" to Jimmy Kimmel's debase and violent comments on late night television--liberals turned a Supreme Court confirmation into a smutty, disgusting smear job. The scariest part is that what happened to Kavanaugh could happen to anyone, any place, any time.  In this new world without restraints, anyone can be accused of the most egregious offenses and destroyed with absolutely no evidence and no recourse after the "charges are proven baseless."  And that, folks, is really, really scary.  

Alexandra Swann's novel W: The Set, incorporates her novels The Planner and The Chosen which tell the story of  an out-of-control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21 and NDAA.  The set is available on Kindle. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.






Friday, August 31, 2018

Beto O'Rourke--The Apple That Didn't Fall Far From the Tree

Although I have not lived in El Paso for over four years, I still have an El Paso, Texas area code so I get calls and texts specific to the area.  One of these came in last weekend from Beto O'Rourke's campaign.  The text wanted to know whether I was going to vote for O'Rourke or Cruz.  I replied with the same message that I gave the young woman who came to my door on a different weekend--I know Beto.  I have met him personally.  And I wouldn't vote for him for dog catcher.
 
I am a Ted Cruz supporter.  I supported Cruz for president.  But for me that is a separate issue than this campaign because for me personally this campaign is more about voting against Beto than voting for Cruz.  And since the race is close, and, as an ex-patriot El Pasoan I have a different perspective than most Texans, I am taking this opportunity to share why I would not ever vote for Beto.
 
To have perspective about Beto's campaign, you have to understand that El Paso is very different ideologically than most of Texas.  El Paso has not experienced the "Texas miracle" partly because El Paso does not embrace the mindset that created that miracle.  El Paso is a liberal Democrat stronghold with a majority Hispanic population.  Ronald Reagan was completely wrong when he said that Hispanics were a natural fit for the Republican party because they shared the social values of that Republicans hold dear.  On some social issues individual Hispanics may agree with Republicans, and individual Hispanics are Republicans, but the predominate Hispanic culture leans much more toward the liberal Democrat ideal of powerful, centralized government and high taxation.  That is the governing model of Latin American countries, and it is the governing model that El Pasoans prefer.  As with many progressive liberals, many of the people in El Paso take an "it's fine for thee but not for me" approach to the repressive policies they advocate for everyone else.  In other words, the city favors numerous laws that are selectively enforced and obeyed by other people--not the elites. 
 
Beto's father was county judge Pat O'Rourke, who was found in 1984 to have a bag of "white powder" in his car during a traffic stop.  The deputy who found the white powder was ordered to destroy it without any investigation or analysis. O'Rourke served out the rest of his term without prosecution, but the traffic stop and suspicions about O'Rourke's drug use made the local news (and appeared in a New York Times story from the era), and he did not seek re-election when that term ended. Pat O'Rourke was killed in 2001 by a motorist while biking in El Paso. 
 
Beto's mother, Melissa O'Rourke, owns Charlotte's--a high-priced furniture boutique.  In 2010 the company pleaded guilty to "restructuring" cash payments to avoid paying taxes to the IRS.  Between 2005 and 2006, Charlotte's accepted $631,000 from an unnamed customer. According to news reports, the customer structured the transactions so that each amount was under $10,000--for example one amount of $50,000 was structured as 18 payments under $10,000 each with multiple receipts issued under multiple names.  Charlotte's was ordered to pay $250,000 restitution and was put on probation for 5 years.  Melissa O'Rourke herself was never charged--according to a news story by KVIA-TV she claimed not to understand that any laws were being broken and, in her case, ignorance of the law proved to be a very adequate excuse. 
 
This family, and the city that rewarded them, gave birth to Beto.  His political career began in a place where the population is constantly seeking a patron--a Spanish word which carries the concept of a wealthy landowner who typically dominates and controls those around him while bestowing favors on those he chooses.  He understands the class envy and anger over income inequality that the national media is constantly pushing because as a child of El Paso he grew up with this mindset and he knows how to manipulate it for his own benefit.  He understands that socialism allows for abusive elites to grab power and monopolize everything for themselves and their own benefit because El Paso has repeatedly embraced leaders who have done exactly that. And he truly understands the socialist progressive policies of the new Democrat party because these principles have been near and dear to the hearts of El Pasoans for a long time.
  
So before you go cast your ballot for Texas Senator in November, here are a few things you should know about Beto:
  1. He is not a champion of  the people with a grassroots campaign of little folks who are just looking for change.  Beto is not only the child of El Paso elites, he is the son-in-law of billionaire developer Bill Sanders.  Sanders is originally from El Paso, but he spent time in Chicago with the LaSalle Group. When Sanders did return to El Paso, he set up a number of elite organizations that operated largely in secret with the goal of redeveloping the city using eminent domain.
  2. As city councilman, Beto supported taking private property (both homes and businesses) to further the plans of his father-in-law's development projects, both through the Paso del Norte Group and the BorderPlex.  He argued at the time that there was no conflict of interest in his votes to support seizing private property through eminent domain to turn over to developers (his wife's dad) because neither he nor his family could profit from his activities.  (Sanders had promised to donate any profits from his REIT, Paso del Norte Group, to charity.) 
  3. As city councilman, Beto supported bills that were difficult and burdensome to small business owners and private property owners, including a landscape ordinance that increased the cost of property ownership for commercial property owners and an ordinance that fined commercial property owners hundreds of dollars a day for failure to remove a dead tree from their property.  On behalf of the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce I spoke to City Council personally regarding that last ordinance and the hardship it worked on small business owners, and Beto responded by sneering that he was tired of people getting in the way of the city's progress.  Mind you that all of this took place during the Great Recession, when many business owners in El Paso were struggling just to keep the lights on.  In a city that constantly beats the drum that both it and its people are poor, Beto helped ram through bills that made it harder for small business people and small property owners to survive and to hang on to whatever they had managed to acquire.
  4. There is a reason that he brags about having an F score card from the NRA.  Again, to understand why this is a point of pride for a Senatorial candidate in Texas, where God and guns are prized, you need to understand El Paso.  My sister-in-law was born in Guadelajara, Mexico.  Right after she married my brother, she walked into the room where he was cleaning his guns.  Instinctively she folded her hands behind her back so that she would not touch the guns because as a child of Mexico she had been taught that, "to touch a gun is to touch the devil."  El Paso is sister city of Juarez, Mexico and Mexico has harsh gun control laws.  These laws have had the net result of transforming Mexico into a society where the most violent criminals rule the society through guns and intimidation and law-abiding people are unarmed.  Nevertheless, anti-gun sentiments are very strong there.
  5. Although he has benefitted hugely from familial connection to a powerful elitist developer, Beto champions environmentalism, green energy and "smart" development.  He took several opportunities to ride his bike to work when he was city councilman to demonstrate to El Pasoans that individual cars are not the best form of transportation.  He championed bike paths and biking in general as a tribute to his father who was killed while bicycling down a busy street.  This dedication to all things "green" fits nicely into the elitist Agenda 21 mindset of Beto and his wealthy donor friends.
  6. He really does support open borders.  In El Paso, cross-border commerce is essential to the city's economy.  The fastest way to start a fight in the city is to stand the heart of downtown and yell "border security."  There is NO support in El Paso for anything except a completely porous border that allows anyone who wants to do so to drift in and out of the city at will.
  7. Beto and his friends have plans for him that go far beyond the Senate.  That was actually apparent years ago when he ran against former Congressman Silvestre Reyes.  Reyes had been a very popular Democrat Congressman but his reputation was tarnished with corruption charges that he was illegally enriching his own family on the taxpayer dime.  Beto ran for Congress and won the seat partly because Reyes was in the middle of a scandal and partly because Reyes did not take him seriously.  But even then, anyone paying attention could see that the long-term goal was to run him for president of the United States.  That is much more apparent now, as the National Review reports in today's Morning Jolt:
"And that’s apparently all he needs! Peter Hamby is writing in Vanity Fair that O’Rourke should be discussed as a potential 2020 Democratic presidential candidate: Whether he wins or loses his race — and yes, even if he loses — O’Rourke should be included in every conversation about the 2020 Democratic primary. That’s because, unlike most of the paint-by-numbers politicians in his party, O’Rourke actually understands how politics should be conducted in the Donald Trump era: authentic, full of energy, stripped of consultant-driven sterility, and waged at all times with a social-media-primed video screen in mind."
There are a lot of words I could use to describe Beto O'Rourke, but "authentic" certainly isn't one of them.  In fact, he is the same mass of contradictions and phoniness that has come to define modern day liberalism--the rich elitist pretending to be one of the poor unwashed masses fighting income inequality and decrying the 1%,
El Paso is forever whining that it is not taken seriously as part of Texas--that Texans don't accept the city or include it and that it does not share in the rest of the state's prosperity.  All of this is true, but they don't take any responsibility for the reason why--El Paso has rejected every single idea that has made the rest of Texas prosperous.  Individual freedom, limited government, the right to private property, and the right to gun ownership--all are valued through most of the state, but not in El Paso.  I can only hope that in November, the rest of the state will once again recognize that Beto O'Rourke is more a child of El Paso than of Texas and that his values and goals are out-of-step with the rest of the state.

 Alexandra Swann's novel W: The Set, incorporates her novels The Planner and The Chosen which tell the story of  an out-of-control, environmentally-driven federal government implementing Agenda 21 and NDAA.  The set is available on Kindle. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.