Hi there. If you're reading this, you're probably a new follower of mine on Twitter. Or maybe you're a troll. Or maybe you're someone making assumptions you really shouldn't. Below will be at least one fact relevant to the point you're trying to make or the question you've asked. Happy reading!
1. You've worked for candidates who lost elections, so why should anyone listen to your views on politics?
Not a lot of people really do listen to my views on politics, relative to people like Ann Coulter, Dick Morris, Joan Walsh and Al Sharpton, but for what it's worth, I'm pretty sure I've had a better track record of predicting outcomes and reasons for them than any of these people. So maybe you should listen, or maybe not. That's your call.
But as for the losing thing, first of all, I've advised winning candidates and parties as well as losing ones, both in the US and abroad. I consulted for the GOP in 2010. I've advised foreign parties and individuals who have won elections. I worked for Scott Walker in his recall election in 2012. I've also worked for losing candidates and parties and organizations (Carly Fiorina is the one who is usually mentioned). And I've worked for people who aren't up for (re-) election who are generally regarded as pretty successful.
My general attitude where working on campaigns is concerned is that I've got to really like and believe in the person, and that their odds of winning aren't really things I consider relevant when deciding whether I like them and want to work for them. Most consultants want to work only for winners, even if they are wet farts of human beings who frankly no one should be inspired by or want to vote for. So, some of them have more winning records than me. But they also work for wet farts of human beings, so there's that.
The vast majority of my work isn't for candidates, committees, parties, etc., though. It's on issues. Again, for whatever that is worth.
2. You only hate Obamacare because it's Obama's initiative, right?
Nope. You should take a look at the pieces featured on this site about Romneycare, the precursor to Obamacare. You'll see I was one of the earliest and most vocal right-of-center critics of it. I hate Romneycare and I hate Obamacare, largely for the same reasons, although ironically, Obamacare actually has a couple of things I like (Medicare cuts, most prominently) that Romneycare doesn't.
3. You don't want people to have health care, do you?
Actually, I do. I just don't believe that the way you provide quality universal or near-universal health care at a reasonable or fair cost is not through expansion of government's role in it, or through a system like the NHS.
4. You don't know anything about the NHS, so how can you criticize it?
Actually, I do. I am a dual US-UK citizen, and the NHS was my primary source of health care for many, many years. One of the reasons I returned to the US was to get into a better health care system than the NHS. The NHS provides universal, fairly crappy care for free for many people, and at a higher cost than (IMO) is warranted for a number of people who don't use it much, but pay for it through their taxes. Sorry to disappoint.
5. You don't have any ideas for what to do instead, though.
Actually, I do, and so do others. Go back and look at John McCain's health care plan from 2008. Hell, look at Obama's. You know what's interesting? Obamacare isn't what Obama proposed. It's what Hillary Clinton proposed. If Obama had pursued what he ran on, it would have been better.
Also look at various health care proposals from people like Rudy Giuliani, Tom Coburn and, yes, Paul Ryan (on the Medicare reform front; there's merit to getting everyone in the country into one system, as opposed to keeping people in something more akin to 3 or 4 systems).
6. You hate gay people.
I'm actually a long-time gay rights supporter. I am on the board of the Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry. I was on the board of GOProud. I've been on the record as supporting same-sex marriage for far longer than the vast majority of Democrats or liberals.
7. You're a social conservative.
Nope, I'm pro-gay-marriage and I'm also pro-choice, though I have some very major moral objections to abortion in most circumstances and would never have an abortion myself. See below for more.
8. You're a baby killer.
I guess this depends on how you define it. I do think abortion should remain legal in the first trimester, or where the mother's life is in jeopardy. I don't think abortion should be allowed on sex-selective or disability-selective grounds, although I also don't think legislation can stop this entirely, only discourage it. I also think people should look at adoption a lot more than they currently do. I think there are huge moral problems with abortion, and that people should abort far, far less. And I would never have an abortion. Above all, I think the best ways to curtail abortion are a) for more people to use better birth control, and more consistently and b) for a cultural case to be made against it, as opposed to seeking to use the strong arm of government to stop it. I'm a skeptic of the effectiveness of big government, and that's true whether we're talking health insurance policy or abortion.
9. You're a racist/xenophobe.
This is true, actually. I am not a fan of Belgium and have met very few Belgians I like. I have a bias against Belgium and Belgians.
But I do like people of Latino, African and Asian extraction, as well as White people -- except if they're from Belgium.
10. You're a lesbian.
No, but I get that some people think any woman with short hair is a lesbian. I'm actually married to the guy I've been with since I was 18 and we have a kid. And yes, my husband was born a man with all the relevant bits, and still lives as a man with all the relevant bits.
11. You hate social conservatives.
No, I like a lot of social conservatives. But I am not a fan of Rick Santorum, or his influence on the GOP. Mike Huckabee is somewhat better insofar as I think he's actually at root a nice guy who cares about people and isn't just bitter and pissed off all the time, but I obviously disagree with him on some stuff.
12. You want to deport all unlawful immigrants.
Unless we're talking gang members or people involved in major financial crimes or sex criminals, no, I'm actually basically for amnesty. I'll even use the word, unlike a lot of people.
13. You hate poor people.
This is partially true. If they're Belgian, I do hate poor people.
But I like and would like to improve the lot of poor people who are not Belgian. I just disagree with liberals and most Democrats about how best to do that. I also disagree with some members of my party about it, too.
I also kind of hate people who support Tottenham Hotspur FC, and a lot of them are poor. Actually, hate might be a bit of a strong word. Dislike and feel sorry for may be more accurate.
14. You voted for Mitt Romney.
I did. I have regretted it for pretty much every second I've thought about it since. In hindsight, it was obvious he was going to lose in my state, so I should have just voted for Gary Johnson. My vote made no difference, but I might have felt marginally better about voting for the going-nowhere libertarian pot guy.
15. You're a RINO.
I have worked for, and like, a lot of more moderate Republicans. And I am a social liberal, and a big softie on immigration. So, yes, kinda, but see below.
16. You're a Tea Party nutjob.
I have also worked for Rand Paul, Rick Perry and Scott Walker, and I like all of them albeit for slightly different reasons. I am very, very conservative on economic policy. I am also extremely pro-2nd amendment. So, yes, kinda, but see above.
17. You spend more time trashing Republicans than Democrats.
Sometimes this is true. But the thing is, there are so many other people who trash Democrats so effectively that I'd just look too second-rate if I focused exclusively on that.
18. Why do you have Justin Bieber's hairdo?
Dude, he changed his hair awhile ago. Keep up.
19. You're an ignorant, uneducated moron.
I'm pretty bad at math, but for what it's worth, I have an MA from the University of St. Andrews, and an English law degree, and I used to be a corporate lawyer. I also speak four languages, albeit three of them increasingly badly.
20. You're not even American, how are you qualified to opine on American politics/culture/history/whatever?
I am American. I am also British.
21. You're not even British, how are you qualified to opine on British politics/culture/history/whatever?
22. You don't know anything about the rest of the world, you're like most dumb Americans who have never traveled outside their borders.
I've traveled to every continent except Australia and Antarctica, and I've lived in four countries. A non-exhaustive list of places I've traveled to: Canada, Jamaica, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, the UK, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Bosnia, Yugoslavia, Motenegro, Greece, Italy, France, Switzerland, Spain, Belgium, Holland, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Hong Kong.
But I am bad at math.
23. Carly Fiorina blew her 2010 campaign.
So, California is really hard terrain for a Republican. The party has a shitty reputation with Latinos and no Republican is going to fare well statewide until that problem is rectified. Likewise, unions have a lot of clout out there and they turn out voters en masse to crush the GOP. But it's worth noting Carly lost by less than the registration gap, and less than Meg Whitman lost to Jerry Brown by. That was basically what should have happened with a well-run Fiorina campaign, and that's what we got. We also forced Democrats to spend money in California in 2010 that they could otherwise have spent in Illinois defeating Mark Kirk. We got senator Kirk, and as I more or less expected, we got Senator Boxer. I can live with that result, even though I would have loved to have Senator Kirk and Senator Fiorina. Senator Giannoulias and Senator Boxer would have been a bridge too far, however.
I'll add to this list as new topics crop up. Thanks for reading!