ARRA News Service
ARRA News Service facebook page  
News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for or by this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used.
Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
Contact: (Pub. Since July, 2006)
    Home Page

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Martin’s Theory of General Election Endorsements

by Rod Martin, Contributing Author:: This year – like every year – we are faced with imperfect candidates between whom we must choose.

As I write this, the context is Donald Trump, whom many conservatives find appalling, and against whom I fought in the primary. But I stress the words “every year.” I have been politically active since I was a teenager, and yet I’ve only rarely had the chance to vote for my preferred candidate post-primary, at least at the Presidential level.

Some suggest withdrawing from the process as a viable option. Others join third parties (and it’s important to note: in all of American history, no third party has ever elected, or come close to electing, a President, although several have caused the other side to win).

I contend, and have always contended, that these are almost never good options. The advocates of these “options” say they are “voting their principles” in the seeming assumption that no one else has any. I have written, spoken and lived my principles on this for decades.

It is finally time I write them down in a comprehensive form.

Principle 1: It is almost never “the lesser of two evils,” only “the better of two choices.”
We hear this argument ceaselessly. But it’s less Christian than humanistic. It suggests there’s an option to have candidates who aren’t fallen. That isn’t going to happen.

Some say we should apply the Bible’s standards for elders to our candidates. Generally speaking, I agree. But we have to remember that they are not actually candidates for elder, and that unlike in a church setting, someone will be elected regardless of whether they meet our preferred standards.

If we wish for godly men to be electable, we should commit ourselves to sufficient evangelism and discipleship to produce a culture in which 51% want that too.

If we won’t, we cannot help but be a minority, and the best viable candidates will look less like David and more like Darius. That’s just reality.

Principle 2: When it comes to the general election, you owe God two duties: gratitude to Him, and neighborly love for and protection of His saints.
Voting is not about “rendering unto Caesar.” Caesar does not require, nor even want, us to vote. Self-government is an extraordinary blessing for which we owe deep gratitude to our God. We fling it in His face when we don’t participate.

Ask those living under dictatorships if you disagree. The alternative to involvement – the one preached by too many of our pastors – is to allow God’s enemies to rule over us, and by “us,” I don’t mean “you”: I mean your children and grandchildren and everyone you love and for whom you’re responsible. If that’s our choice, then we are going beyond the sin of the Israelites who demanded a king: we’re begging for that king to be Caligula, or Nero.

The better candidate might well not be good, just better. But the better candidate will do more good, or at least less evil. Our having a say – as Joseph, Daniel, Obadiah, Nehemiah and Mordecai each did – helps mitigate the unvarnished evil which might otherwise befall us, thus protecting the saints and, wherever possible, advancing the Kingdom, even in ungodly times.

Principle 3: Perfect is for the primary, consensus is for the general.
In this year’s Republican primaries we had 17 choices, in my view the best field of our lifetimes so far. We had a robust debate. And statistically speaking, your guy probably lost.

The nomination process is a great argument, in which two broad coalitions dispute internally about what they believe matters most, and ultimately pick champions to represent their consensus position against the other side’s. Or to put that another way, primaries are about persuasion.

If you weren’t persuasive enough (and my guys were not), you have few gripes coming. Dust yourself off and start again.

In both primary and general elections, I subscribe to the famed Buckley Rule, that we should support “the rightward most viable candidate.”

But if my team has lost in the playoffs, someone else is winning the Super Bowl no matter how I “feel” about it.

Principle 4: We are not entitled to a “good” candidate: we have to earn one.
No one is entitled – not even us – to 51%. You have to earn it, just as you have to disciple your family, your church or your city with work, sweat and tears.

Some try to avoid this, longing for a multi-party system (and make no mistake, we don’t have one). But in fact, whatever its flaws, our two-party system is a great blessing.

Why? Because it’s more honest. Far more.

In multi-party systems (such as Italy’s), every party pretends to voters that it can do things it manifestly cannot, for the simple reason that no party will get even close to a majority. Afterwards, there is an election, and the most successful party (which frequently got 30% or less) begins cutting deals with smaller parties to form a coalition government for whom absolutely no one voted.

The coalition represents only the smoke-filled room, and the government after it will only represent some future smoke-filled room.

In America, we make our coalitions in public, with everyone’s full participation. That’s our primary. It’s better by every possible measure, even when our guys lose. And we have a better chance of persuading our countrymen next time if we don’t take our toys and go home today.

Principle 5: Yes, you are actually responsible for the likely outcome of your choices.
I’m not sure why this concept is so difficult for so many of our people. If you drink and drive, you are responsible for any deaths you cause, even if you didn’t “mean” to kill anybody. If you’re a bartender and you serve too many drinks to someone who then kills somebody, you go to jail too.

So why do we not understand that standing aside and allowing a truly terrible choice to win is the same, no matter how “virtuous” your no-hope third party or write-in candidate might be? Even if you can’t stand Candidate X, there’s rarely a time you don’t need to vote against some worse Candidate Y. You must do that efficaciously or you’re voting for them in all but name.

“I’m not responsible for the outcome” is the cry of scoundrels and cowards everywhere.

Principle 6: Who will hurt us more? Beat them.
Southern Seminary professor Mark Coppenger expands on this well in his American Spectator essay “Fiduciary Values”. He posits guardianship (“keeping safe our citizens, and hence our laws, borders, liberties, environment, strategic alliances, economy, and cultural treasures”) and stewardship (“making the most of our God-given resources, both personal and material“) as key.

Like Coppenger, I agree that the other virtues matter: I just believe these matter more in this context. Jimmy Carter was a “virtuous” man, in the way we use that term, but he was a terrible president, particularly by the measure of those qualities most needed in a nation’s leader.

More to the point, Carter degraded America’s defenses, enabled the Ayatollahs and the Communists (and their eradication of liberty and persecution of the church) in over 20 additional countries, trashed our economy (which is to say, our families) and placed all of us directly in harm’s way.

Was he “nicer” than Jerry Ford? I don’t know. But I also don’t care.

Or we could put that another way. America was right to choose Stalin over Hitler, even though Stalin was responsible for the murder of ten times as many people. Why? Because there weren’t any ICBMs yet, and Stalin was further away. It was not America’s duty to arbitrate eternal right and wrong: God has that quite covered.

Rather, it was America’s leaders’ duty to defeat the most immediate threat to America’s people, buying time to deal with the further threat in due course. And as it happened, God blessed that choice and wiped both evils from the Earth, the latter without the war we all feared.

Principle 7: As in all else, it’s not about you.
You may have noticed your friends fretting, in this election or some other, about “their principles,” which far too often means their preferences. They talk about irrational things, like writing in someone whose name no one knows, as a valid option to advance these.

They might as well write in Bugs Bunny, or Jed Bartlet. They need to stop kidding themselves. No one knows or cares about their personal made-up drama.

A variant on this is some people’s seeming belief that candidates are gods to whom their vote is a sacrifice, or in whom they are placing their faith. This is silly. They’re just candidates. You are not somehow cloaking them in your moral authority, certification or blank-check approval. You’re just picking the better choice, like vegetables over popsicles.
Our choice, however important, is more prosaic than our egos let us think.

“Getting my way” is not important. “My primary candidate” is not important. Once we better understand how our system really works, once we grasp that the blessing of self-government requires our participation, once we understand that we are actually responsible for our small part in the overall outcome, all of this becomes easier.

Perhaps, as some pastors are quick to say, they are personally ready for martyrdom. But are they ready to make that choice for everyone else? For their daughters? Needlessly?

Now of course there might be special cases. Perhaps Hitler runs against Pol Pot, for example. But this is a strawman: in America we’ve never seen such an example, nor are we likely to. And indeed, Hitler himself did not run against Pol Pot: he ran against Paul von Hindenburg. And though few of us would find Hindenburg acceptable in isolation, in 1932 he was clearly the right choice.

My fiduciary, protective, defensive approach may not appeal to you. Manliness does not appeal to this culture generally.
But manning up is exactly what is called for. First in the primary, where Christians tend to lollygag, only to get needlessly bested by their worldly rivals. And second in the general, wherein we tend to whine about our choices, sit on our hands and let the worse choice lead our nation needlessly further from God’s truth.

I leave to you to decide whether these principles apply this time. But the exception would have to be pretty impressive.
Rod D. Martin, writes at, and is founder and CEO of The Martin Organization, a technology entrepreneur, venture capitalist, author and conservative activist. He is a member of the Board of Governors of the Council for National Policy, a Past President of the National Federation Republican Assemblies. and a contributing author to the ARRA News Service.

Tags: Rod Martin,, Theory, General Election, Endorsements To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 4:30 PM - Post Link


Post a Comment

<< Home

View U.S. National Debt

Don't miss anything!
Subscribe to the
ARRA News Service
It's FREE & No Ads!

You will receive a verification email
& must validate you subscribed!

You Then Receive One Email Each AM
With Prior Days Articles / Toons / More

Also, Join us at:

Recent Posts:
Personal Tweets by the editor:
Dr. Bill - OzarkGuru - @arra
#Christian Conservative; Retired USAF & Grad Professor. Constitution NRA ProLife schoolchoice fairtax - Editor ARRA NEWS SERVICE. THANKS FOR FOLLOWING!

Action Links!
Arkansas State Senators
AR State Representatives
Arkansas Governor Office
Arkansas Attorney General
Bankrupting America
US House of Representatives
US Senators
Family Research Council
Sunshine Review

Facebook Accts - Dr. Bill Smith
ARRA News Service
Arkansans Against Big Government
Alley-White Am. Legion #52
Catholics & Protestants United Against Discrimination
End Taxpayer Funding of NPR
Overturn Roe V. Wade
Prolife Soldiers
Project Wildfire 4 Life
Republican Liberty Caucus of Arkansas
The Gold Standard
US Atty Gen Loretta Lynch, aka Eric Holder, Must Go
Veterans for Sarah Palin
Why Vote for Hillary (Satire)
FB Groups:
Arkansas For Sarah Palin
Arkansas Conservative Caucus
Arkansas County Tea Party
Arkansans' Discussion Group on National Issues
Blogs for Borders
Conservative Solutions
Conservative Voices
Defend Marriage -- Arkansas
FairTax Nation
Arkansas for FairTax
Friends of the TEA Party in Arkansas
Freedom Roundtable
Let's Mine AR Lignite NOW!
Pro-Life Rocks - Arkansas
Republican Network
Republican Liberty Caucus of AR
Reject the U.N.


Request Via
Article Comment

Links to ARRA News
A Patriotic Nurse
Agora Associates
a12iggymom's Blog
America, You Asked For It!
Americans for a Free Republic
America's Best Choice
America's Whatchtower
An Ol’ Broad’s Ramblings
ARRA Twitter
As A Matter of Fact
As The Crackerhead Crumbles
Baaad Media!
Black & Right
Blogs For Borders
Blogs for Palin
Blow the Trumpet Ministry
Boot Berryism
Cap'n Bob & the Damsel
Chicago Ray Report
Chuck Baldwin - links
Citizen Pamphleteer
Common Cents
Conservative Hideout
Conservative Observer AZ
Conservative Voices
Conway Real Deal
Defeat Obama's Agenda
Diana's Corner
eGOP News
Florida Pundit
Franklin Online Outreach
Freedom For US Now
Free Zone Media Center
For God and Liberty
Garland County Republicans
Greater Fitchburg For Life
Guns and Religion
Lasting Liberty Blog
Liberal Isn't Amy
Liberty's Lifeline
Maggie's Notebook
Marathon Pundit
Monkey in the Middle
NASA Satellites
No Runny Eggs
Okie Campaigns
Our Voices Arkansas
Patriot's Corner
Publius Forum
Randy's Roundtable
Real Debate Wisconsin
Religion and Morality
Right on Issues that Matter
Right Reason
Rocking on the Right Side
Saber Point
Saline Watchdog
Secure Arkansas
Sentry Journal
Sultan Knish
Stop Obama Satire & Cartoons
The Arkansas Patriot
The Audacity of Logic
The Blue Eye View
The Bobo Files
The Born Again Americans
TEA Party Cartoons
The Conservative Citizen
The Foxhole | Unapologetic Patriot
The Liberty Republican
The Lid
The Looking Spoon
The Maritime Sentry
The O Word
The Path to Tyranny Blog
The Real Polichick
The War on Guns
Truth About Obamacare
Twitter @ARRA
Warning Signs
Women's Prayer & Action

Editor's Managed Twitter Accounts
Twitter Dr. Bill Smith @arra
Twitter Arkansas @GOPNetwork
Twitter @BootBerryism
Twitter @SovereignAllies
Twitter @FairTaxNation

Editor's Recommended Orgs
Accuracy in Media (AIM)
American Committment
American Culture & Faith Institute
American Enterprise Institute
American Family Business Institute
Americans for Limited Government
Americans for Prosperity
Americans for Tax Reform
American Security Council Fdn
AR Faith & Ethics Council
Arkansas Policy Foundation
Ayn Rand Institute
Bill of Rights Institute
Campaign for Working Families
Center for Individual Freedom
Center for Immigration Studies
Center for Just Society
Center for Freedom & Prosperity
Citizens Against Gov't Waste
Citizens in Charge Foundstion
Coalition for the Future American Worker
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Concerned Veterans for America
Concerned Women for America
Declaration of Am. Renewal
Eagle Forum
Family Research Council
Family Security Matters
Franklin Center for Gov't & Public Integrity
Freedom Works
Gingrich Productions
Global Incident Map
Great Americans
Gold Standard 2012 Project
Gun Owners of America (GOA)
Heritage Action for America
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Institute For Justice
Institute for Truth in Accounting
Intercollegiate Studies Institute
Judicial Watch
Less Government
Media Reseach Center
National Center for Policy Analysis
National Right To Work Foundation
National Rifle Association (NRA)
National Rifle Association (NRA-ILA)
News Busters
O'Bluejacket's Patriotic Flicks
Open Secrets
Presidential Prayer Team
Religious Freedom Coalition
Renew America
Ron Paul Institute
State Policy Network
Tax Foundation
Tax Policy Center
The Club for Growth
The Federalist
The Gold Standard Now
The Heritage Foundation
The Leadership Institute
Union Facts

Blogs For Borders

Reject the United Nations

Adopt Our Troops in Prayer

Thousands of Deadly Islamic Terror Attacks Since 9/11

FairTax Nation on FaceBook
Friends of Israel - Stand with Israel
Blog Feeds
Syndicated - Get the ARRA News Service feed Syndicated!
ARRA Blog Feed

Add to Google Reader or Homepage

Add to The Free Dictionary

Powered by Blogger

  • How To Exchange Links!
  • Comments by contributing authors or other sources do not necessarily reflect the position the editor, other contributing authors, sources, readers, or commenters. No contributors, or editors are paid for articles, images, cartoons, etc. While having reported on and promoting the beliefs associated with the ARRA, this blog/site is not controlled by nor funded by the ARRA. This site/blog does not advertise for money or services nor does it solicit funding for its support.
  • Fair Use: This site/blog may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material as provided for in section Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Per said section, the material on this site/blog is distributed without profit to readers to view for the expressed purpose of viewing the included information for research, educational, or satirical purposes. Any person/entity seeking to use copyrighted material shared on this site/blog for purposes that go beyond "fair use," must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
  • © 2006 - 2017 ARRA News Service
Creative Commons License
Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.