Lawson according to Price on issues

In a recent letter to constituents, Representative David Price described opposition candidate BJ Lawson's position on various issues.  It would be informative to get BJ Lawson's point by point response to each issue as described by Representative David Price.  Similarly, it would be informative to get Representative David Price's response to Price according to Lawson on the issues. I don't have the time to compile or find this one, if someone does please post it in the same format as this post but as a separate post.  Lets hope to get their responses ...



Lawson according to Price on issues 

In a recent News & Observer article, Dr. Lawson is quoted as saying that he does not believe Congress can take any action to "fix the economy and our financial system."  Lawson believes the current financial crisis is a result of too much regulation, not too little.  Before the financial collapse, he argued that "we must eliminate onerous regulations" on businesses and cited Sarbanes-Oxley, the reform legislation that strengthened corporate accounting regulations in the wake of the Enron and WorldCom scandals, as a candidate for repeal.  

He further advocates abolition of the Federal Reserve, the nation's central banking system that regulates our monetary policy and helps prevent banking panics.  And he suggests that theUnited States should revert to schemes similar to the gold standard, regional currencies, and even the barter system.  These radically conservative ideas obviously fly in the face of mainstream economic thought – in fact, they fall on the losing side of arguments determined nearly a century ago.  

Lawson opposes progressive income taxation, and corporate, capital gains, and estate taxes.  He opposes the mortgage, medical expense, and charitable contribution tax deductions, and the student loan, earned income, and child tax credits.  In 2007, he endorsed a national sales tax scheme that could add a 30% price increase to all new purchases, including homes, gasoline, food, and medicine.  In fact, Brookings Institution economists say this is a low estimate.  Even now, he claims to still like the idea, but feels it could not be implemented at this time.  All of these extreme ideas on taxation would radically shift the tax burden from the wealthy to the middle class.  

Lawson believes "the safety net for individuals should be eliminated," and supports elimination or at least privatization of Social Security and Medicare.  Just this July, he said that he has "not yet found any significant disagreements" with his political mentor Ron Paul, who has consistently and repeatedly called for the eventual abolition of Social Security and Medicare. 

to rebut Rep. Price's gross misrepresentations of my positions. Regarding the economy:

- Banking, Finance, and Debt

I oppose a financial system that preys on working Americans with high interest rates and endless fees for lending money that it creates out of nothing. I oppose taxpayer-funded bailouts of Wall Street. I oppose deregulation of the banking system, since our banking system enjoys a legislated monopoly over our money and credit.

David Price works for the credit card industry, and voted to make our government a collection agency for private banks with 2005's so-called "bankruptcy reform." David Price voted for the administrations's $850 billion Wall Street bailout, despite evidence that it will not reduce foreclosures or ease the credit crisis. David Price voted to deregulate the banking industry by repealing Glass Steagall regulations, thus encouraging banking institutions to become "too big to fail."



In brief, the current crisis is the expected outcome from deregulating a legislated monopoly.

The banking industry has a monopoly over our supply of money and credit thanks to the Federal Reserve Act and gradual consolidation of power over the past 95 years. As we've seen, that monopoly must be regulated aggressively, or else moral hazard and the race for short term profits puts the entire system at risk.

David Price played a key role in enabling this deregulation and facilitating moral hazard with his votes to repealing Glass-Stegall, and the Paulson/Bernanke bailouts... as well as his vote in favor of 2005's bankruptcy reform which is still coming home to roost. For more information see here:

and here:

I'm not so bold as to advocate "abolishing" the Federal Reserve -- its actions will eventually result in its own self-destruction, if economic history is any guide. Instead, I simply advocate for choice -- we need monetary freedom to encourage local, sustainable economic growth:

Price claims that Sarbanes-Oxley resulted in tougher new accounting standards. Great. Except that those accounting standards did NOTHING to prevent the balance sheet malfeasance that's resulted in the disorderly insolvency of our banking industry, and large parts of our insurance industry, in many cases thanks to off-balance sheet shenanigans and abuse of mark-to-market accounting of the same flavor that brought down Enron.

The bottom line is that Sarbox makes life a lot more difficult and expensive for honest businesses, especially startups, while the businesses that we're now bailing out stay "compliant" by paying lawyers and accountants lots of money to buy approval, and then signing off on financial statements that are based on deeply flawed (but nonetheless accepted) underlying assumptions.

Did all of those regulations prevent the collapse of AIG? WMU? MER? WB? LEH? What good were they?

Regarding taxation, I believe it's time to look at the sustainability of our taxation policy as a whole, based upon where we want to go as a country. If we want more jobs and income, why should we tax jobs and income? Like Al Gore said, why not tax what we burn, instead of what we earn?

As you'll see from the above, I extensively studied but do not endorse the "FairTax". I have no desire to give the federal government taxing jurisdiction over every retail transaction.

Also, I have never said that we should eliminate safety nets. Over time, however, we need to transition to safety nets that are as local and accountable as possible. Medicare and Social Security must be reformed -- in the short term I favor immediate redirection of funds from our irrational foreign policy to shoring up our domestic finances. But over the longer term, Medicare and Social Security have provided for our national insolvency. Don't believe me, listen to David Walker:

Finally, I would never advocate privatizing social security with our current money and banking system. Why should we hand retirement savings from vulnerable individuals to a financial services industry that is capable of turning a 401k into a 201k in a matter of weeks?


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Education and Research
Lawson believes there should be no federal role in education.  He advocates elimination of the Department of Education.  He even opposes low interest student loans, believing they are "distorting the economics of higher education."  

Lawson also opposes the federal funding of research that is vital to not only the health and quality of life for our families, but also the local universities and economy of the Fourth District.  He doesn't believe entities like the National Institutes of Health should exist, much less receive adequate funding.  He opposes federal funding for all medical research – even current work to understand and combat diseases like cancer, diabetes, and Parkinson's.  He opposes funding for research on both existing and new lines of stem cells – a position to the right of George W. Bush, and one that could deny life-saving advances to millions of Americans.  

Robust support for research and innovation is obviously important for schools like UNC, N.C.State, Duke, and the local spin-off companies.  It is also the only way we can assure America's national economic competitiveness in a new century marked by the ascendant economies of China and India.  

Regarding a federal role in education... I discussed this issue extensively earlier this year at BlueNC, starting at this comment:

Pay particular attention to this chart at the bottom of the post:

So much for the government helping give us an "affordable education" -- the government's well-meaning efforts to "help" have just thrown money at higher education. Cheap money and cheap debt have driven up tuition so we start minting newly-graduated debt slaves who have no choice except working for The Man instead of trying to change the world.

Here's the upshot regarding the Department of Education... involving the federal government takes money AWAY from our students and teachers here in North Carolina:

Regarding research -- I'm not a huge hurry to cut research dollars. There are much better places to cut, like the cost of our trillion-dollar foreign policy. But over time, individuals investing their OWN money are better and more disciplined investors than government bueaucrats spending other peoples' money.

I sit on a board of a local startup incubator that helps take companies out of the laboratory through pre-commercial development, and hopefully to their first fundraising. It is MUCH more difficult to work with the opaque box of federal SBIR grants funded by folks with political connections than it is to fund a great idea and a great team with a motivated investor who knows the space and the technology.

To the extent that we take money away from individuals who might be able to make their own investments in future technologies, we handicap job growth because we become dependent on a highly politicized system of seeking funds for good ideas.

That's been my experience as an entrepreneur, and as an investor... not saying that federal grants don't get the job done in some cases, but over time we'll be much better off if our people have more of their OWN money to invest.

Regarding healthcare research, there's much to be said about America's fantastic system of healthcare R&D. However, we must admit that our knee-jerk tendency to subsidize R&D can result in a healthcare system that focuses on treating diseases and symptoms instead of prevention and wellness.

When you look at expensive chronic diseases like diabetes, and the rapidly rising rate of diabetes and obesity, it does seem like we've allowed our healthcare system to transform itself into something that turns disease into recurring revenue for drug companies. That's not sustainable, nor in our long-term best interest. Balance is needed.


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Health Care
Lawson believes that "healthcare is not a responsibility of the federal government," and laments that "many have become dependent on the existing safety net."  He opposes the expansion of children's health care and tax incentives for employer-provided insurance. 

Health care should ideally be the product of a therapeutic relationship between a patient and provider.

Today's healthcare has been completely taken over by corporate interests, most notably insurance companies.

I recommend the following book, which does an excellent job of "following the money" in our healthcare system and identifying the conflicts of interests that exist:

Unfortunately, neither of the major "party plans" sufficiently take aim at the entrenched interests that run healthcare (or I should say "corporatecare") for their own benefit.

One can argue that single payer would be better than the current system... but even with single payer, we would need to be comfortable accepting arbitrary a priori restrictions on care -- for example, once you hit 70, no more dialysis. Even if you're the Vice President, once you hit 70 and need dialysis you need to accept your fate like the Inuit elder who takes his last walk into the blinding snowstorm as not to burden the family. Sorry, we need to spend that money on sick kids instead.

I'm a big fan of children's health care, paid for by parents with the ability to do so, or through a safety net that is as local and accountable as possible.

I'm not a big fan of continuing to tie healthcare to employment. Health care should be a personal matter, and coupling healthcare to increasingly paternalistic employers is a bad deal for patients, as well as providers.

There are no easy answers, but by whatever means possible, I will work for change that will empower patients and providers and take on the corporate interests that have destroyed the patient/doctor and patient/provider relationship:

More to come. Time to work the polls.


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Lawson opposes strengthening the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act, even after the past eight years of weakening by the Bush Administration.  He opposes federal action to encourage the development of alternative fuels.  He even favors eliminating any government assistance to address high energy prices.   

I've written a summary of my views on the environment here:

It's impossible to just talk about the environment without asking broader questions about sustainability, however, and I've written a fair amount about the global issue of sustainability in economic, agricultural, monetary, and environmental policies here:

... but briefly, I do not mindlessly subscribe to the mantra of "deregulation" as preached by corporate interests. The basic problem is that corporations enjoy limited liability and corporate personhood, which gives them an unfair competitive advantage relative to individuals. There's an analogy from my medical experience that has been helpful, as quoted in another email I wrote on this topic:


Just wanted to follow up to your thoughts on the environment, and federal regulation.

Practically speaking, the feds have quite an oversight role already, but the challenge is that giving the feds that power makes that power subject to manipulation. Thus, we get into problems when a certain administration "guts" environmental protection regulations, politicizes the enforcement of regulations, or shows favoritism towards well-connected corporations. So then we get into "pendulum mode" where regulations and their enforcement swing back and forth depending on the political mood, and the "character of the characters" in office and the regulatory bureaucracies.

At some level, though, environmental protection is an intensely local issue. Who has the most to lose from dirty air and water? The folks closest to the source of pollution, usually.

That's why I'm so adamantly opposed to NBAF -- is Washington going to be responsive to our needs for environmental justice in our local communities? Just look at NBAF -- Homeland Security has put forth a Draft Environmental Impact Statement on the NBAF facility that purports to project the impact of a BSL4 lab on air and water quality without even saying if the hazardous waste from this 500,000 sq ft facility will be burned or buried! But since they've followed the "regulations", they're technically in compliance.

So I'm trying to ask a deeper question -- how do we empower those who are most vulnerable to have a voice, when government typically answers to corporate interests that pay for re-election campaigns and whose employees revolve between industry, consulting, and regulatory bureaucracies?

The tort system is a good equalizer, except for one problem that both you and Beth brought up -- corporations can just walk away from the mess they create, and management and owners can avoid personal liability.

In my opinion, THAT'S the problem.

In medicine, I am liable for the care I provide. If I am negligent, there are lots of lawyers who will happily sue me and take 30% of the judgment on contingency. I like the tort system in medicine because it DOES protect the patient, and I believe that it does so much more equally than if there was a government regulatory body that processed malpractice claims. Can you imagine how much doctors would lobby to control the judgments rendered by a board of government "medical quality regulators?"

But I am an individual. I just can't incorporate myself, provide bad care, and then declare my corporation bankrupt in case of lawsuit... and move on to hurt someone else. Likewise, it doesn't make sense that individuals are shielded from the consequences of their actions just because they get together and form a corporation. I think folks would tread a lot more carefully, and insure for many more contingencies, if they were personally liable for the action of their companies on their watch.

Interestingly, this movement of using government regulation to escape tort liability is already underway in the pharmaceutical industry. This concept is called "preemption":

An item sure to end up on the chopping block with the Democrats back in power, is the Bush administration's multi-billion dollar gift to Big Pharma, that bars people who have been injured by drugs approved by the FDA from suing the drug's maker in state courts.

Under the FDA's federal preemption position, victims injured by dangerous drugs would go uncompensated, the regulatory powers of the states would end, and the drug companies would only be answerable to the FDA.

Preemption severely limits the rights of individuals and the states. If big pharma can control the FDA and get their drugs approved, once the drug has been approved, they're essentially insulated from any subsequent liability because they've followed the FDA's regulations. Too much consolidation of regulatory power can be a bad thing, regardless of whether the "environment" is the earth, or your body. :-)

Ultimately, we should seek to maximize individual rights, not corporate rights.

Does that make sense? I think our society could better protect the environment without "outsourcing" environmental protection to a government that tends to become corrupted by corporate interests -- but given that we're not yet having a national conversation about the legal basis of corporations and limited liability, I agree that regulations are an imperfect but necessary solution in many cases where market based solutions are insufficient.

The bottom line is that there are many cases where "regulations" are actually just fodder to exhaust community members and activists as the corporations check their boxes and remain "compliant", thus legalizing abuse that we should be avoiding in the first place.


Regarding alternative fuels, and energy costs: the government should not be in the business of picking winners and losers, or trying to artificially make energy "more affordable". How much would a gallon of gasoline cost if we didn't subsidize it with our military presence in the Middle East? How much has perpetuating an addiction to imported fossil fuels cost us in terms of military spending and lives?

High energy prices are a great incentive to conserve and develop local, sustainable alternatives. Corporate interests have proven adept at using government as a tool to give themselves a competitive advantage, and preserve relative monopolies -- in the case of Big Oil, it's using decades of military intervention to supply and nurture an unsustainable addiction.

Especially in energy, there's little difference between government interests and corporate interests.

Where should we go with energy? Again, I'm in favor of looking at energy holistically -- let's stop taxing income, and start taxing consumption of burning polluting nonrenewables, and change our foreign to reflect the true cost of the supply chain from the Middle East.

We can debate ways to make such a tax policy progressive, and the bottom line is that higher energy prices and eliminating taxes on jobs and income will encourage conservation and development of alternatives.


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Foreign Affairs
Lawson opposes all foreign aid.  Yet elimination of foreign aid would lead to untold suffering for millions of the world's most desperate individuals, including current efforts to prevent and treat HIV-AIDS and malaria in Africa and elsewhere, and tsunami relief in South Asia.  

Lawson further believes the U.S. should not meet our financial obligations to the United Nations.  And he thinks we should abandon military and all other efforts in Afghanistan to defeat Al-Qaeda and a resurgent Taliban.   

Foreign aid has been described as a way to take money from poor people in rich nations, and give it to rich people in poor nations.

Our nation is effectively bankrupt, with $10.5 trillion in national debt, plus over $50 trillion in unfunded liabilities for Medicare and Social Security. Does it make sense to borrow money from other countries to give to other countries?

Without federal foreign aid, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Warren Buffet, and NGOs like the Red Cross would still be motivated to treat HIV-AIDS and malaria in Africa and elsewhere.

Regarding tsunami relief, again, private charities provided much assistance. Our federal government can barely handle a hurricane on our shores, nor should it -- our state and local governments should be empowered and competent to lead the response.

What gives our federal government the right or obligation to provide tsunami relief in South Asia? Let's empower NGOs and private organizations who are accountable to their donors to show the goodness of America.


Regarding the UN: My basic philosophy on the UN is that I am fine with a supranational diplomatic body as a forum of conversation and relationship building. However, no actions in a supranational diplomatic body should usurp our sovereign legislative process, since it is only our Congress that is accountable to the people.

My concern with the UN and supranational organizations like the WTO, IMF, and World Bank is that they become tools for multinational corporations to advance globalist agendas and further consolidate power. The WTO's codex for medicine/natural substances is a good example -- big pharma is working to use this supranational body to limit our access to alternative/natural remedies, thus reducing health freedom and making us more dependent on the "medical industrial complex."

An even more concerning example was the UN being used as a tool to push us into an unconstitutional war and occupation in Iraq. If Congress doesn't declare war, we must not send or troops into war based upon a UN resolution.

Ultimately, we must ensure that our government answers to the American people. If we allow unaccountable bureaucrats in supranational bodies to make policies and bypass our legislative process, we lose control and accountability.

Given that such supranational power is extremely attractive to corporate interests, we quickly end up in a situation where the foxes (multinational corporations) are guarding the henhouse.


Regarding Afghanistan, the 2001 authorization for use of military force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban was exactly that. There was no language in the resolution authorizing an occupation, installation of a government of our choosing, a nation-building operation, or long-term deployment of military troops. As Michael Scheuer, former chief of the Bin Laden Unit of the CIA, details in his book Imperial Hubris, Afghanistan is a region historically composed of many different and conflicted ethnic groups and tribes who nonetheless share contempt for foreign invasion and occupation. This reality was the case when the British Empire and USSR invaded and occupied, and is becoming the case with our current occupation. Not unexpectedly, warlords are uniting with the resurgent Taliban in resisting our installed government and our intervention.  

Afghanistan, like Iraq, is a demonstration of the failure of our unwise and arbitrary interventionist foreign policy. We were financially supporting the Taliban as we did Saddam Hussein, and after deposing them for doing something we didn't like, our hubris led us to install a government and attempt a costly nation-building project that ignores the history and culture of the area. And while we attempted this ill-advised strategy, we simultaneously diverted resources away from it to conduct the ill-advised invasion and occupation of Iraq. Our experience in Afghanistan and Iraq demonstrates the need for a wholesale change in our foreign policy toward one based consistently on the principle of diplomacy and trade rather than aggressive interventionism. 

The goal in Afghanistan going forward should be the same goal originally detailed in the resolution: to hunt down those responsible for the attacks on 9/11 and bring them to justice. Finally, if we really cared about defeating (and de-funding) the Taliban, we would question our failed policies regarding drug prohibition:

Our ill-advised "drug war" creates a black market with artificially high prices for opium derivatives -- thus, the Taliban have a ready means to finance their operations through the drug trade.


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Gun Control
Lawson strongly disagrees with reasonable restrictions that keep guns out of the hands of those who would do harm.  He authored and worked to pass a resolution at the Republican state convention that called for the elimination of no-carry zones across the state.  Elimination of those zones would allow concealed handguns in areas like schools and college campuses, state and federal government office buildings, financial institutions, and even public gatherings like parades.  

and avid target shooter, I agree with our existing reasonable restrictions. To obtain my concealed carry permit, I had to undergo a criminal backround check, register, and complete a certification course with both test and practical components:

How many crimes are committed by licensed concealed carry permit holders in North Carolina?

I'm not aware of any, and I've looked. Crimes are committed by people who don't obey laws -- they're criminals, by definition.

North Carolina's existing "no carry zones" are capricious and arbitrary, and simply guarantee that only criminals will be armed in these select areas

I have no objection to private property owners restricting firearms on their property. But blanket a priori restrictions by the state are unreasonable, and counterproductive. The Virginia Tech shooting could have been stopped much earlier by a single licensed concealed carry permit holder.

More thoughts on the second amendment here:

One cannot defend the Bill of Rights without defending the second amendment as an individual right.


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Public Safety
Rather than calling for obviously needed reforms in the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Lawson has actually called for the elimination of FEMA.  This would leave states and communities on their own to deal with natural and man-made disasters.  Because North Carolinais very disaster-prone, our state would be especially hard hit by such an extreme step.  

breeds dependency on increasingly unaccountable federal bureaucrats. We should foster stronger, self-sufficient states and local communities that are well-equipped to deal with the nuanced and local aspects of emergency response.

How does, and why should, a federal bureaucrat know more about North Carolina hurricane response than an Outer Banks emergency management officer? How does, and why should, a federal bureaucrat know more about earthquake response than a San Francisco emergency management officer?

Our communities do not exist in a vacuum. They should be empowered and encouraged to work together at the state and local level to become increasingly interdependent, as opposed to dependent on Washington. We need more resources for disaster planning and response at the state and local level, not more money going to Washington.

We've all seen power companies sharing crews across state lines for disaster response. That's a great example of communities helping each other during times of need, and something that doesn't require a Federal Bureau of Illumination, or FEMA.


William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

Social Justice and Civil Rights
Lawson favors repeal of Roe v. Wade and opposes a woman's right to choose, even in the case of rape or incest. 

Lawson does not believe sexual orientation should be included in hate crime or employment nondiscrimination definitions.

Lawson opposes affirmative action.

I do not support federally mandated Affirmative Action, as I believe it is unconstitutional. I believe that rights belong to individuals and that success and opportunity should be based on individual merit. I fully support the right of private institutions to employ Affirmative Action policies if desired, however, and I believe states have Constitutional purview to do so, as well.

It's interesting to contrast a principled belief in individual equality with the the narrowminded philosophy that certain communities "breed terrorism":


I generally don't like federal hate crime legislation, because it's difficult to prove a motive. Crimes are crimes, and all crimes should be punished equally -- it's NEVER ok to injure someone, regardless of whether the person is the same or different as you. Everyone -- perpetrator and victim -- should be equal in the eyes of the law.


Regarding abortion, please see here:


We cannot discuss civil rights without discussing civil liberties. My opponent has created a magnificent "straw man" argument here to distract from his abysmal record on this topic:


Finally, the one of the largest abominations to social justice in our community is the selective criminalization of addiction through federal drug prohibition.

I will work to stop criminalizing addiction, and end federal drug prohibition and mandated sentences. Today's drug prohibition is yesterday's alcohol prohibition. These failed policies target the poor and create an underground economy of dangerous criminals that destroy communities. Changing our drug policies will reduce crime and violence, rates of addiction, and the expense and long-term economic damage of imprisonment.

David Price supports the "war on drugs" and criminalizing addiction. This past June he voted to give police anti-drug programs in Mexico and Central America over $1.5 billion of our money, when we should be investing in addiction recovery, education, job training, and job creation here at home. Read more here:



William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

you didn't follow the link (re: abortion)

"I do not believe the Supreme Court was constitutionally justified in issuing a blanket decision about this issue, and favor returning the abortion discussion to the state and local level."



I am consistently pro-life, and believe the purpose of government is to protect life. Therefore, I do not support abortion or capital punishment. However, the abortion debate is too often used as a wedge issue to divide the electorate.

As an American, I am most concerned with bringing our communities together to identify productive solutions to these divisive issues. For example, I do not know any pro-choice people who like abortions, either. They just fear women dying of sepsis after seeking illegal abortions in a desperate situation.

My first priority is encouraging a more constructive local debate on how we can prevent unwanted pregnancies and empower local, accountable organizations to provide alternatives to abortion. I believe that a discussion at the local level has the potential to change hearts, and the best comment on the abortion debate I've heard recently was "Laws will change when hearts have changed."

I do not believe the Supreme Court was constitutionally justified in issuing a blanket decision about this issue, and favor returning the abortion discussion to the state and local level. Constantly battling over the "right" Supreme Court justices has done nothing to advance the abortion debate in my lifetime.

As Einstein said, insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result. I'm ready to try a different approach to change hearts and reduce abortions.


Finally, I'm running for the House of Representatives. I have nothing to say about the approval of Supreme Court justices, and I'm not going to seek to increase the power of the federal government or its corporate masters.

I fail to see how that combination is deemed threatening when combined with a respect for human life.

William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

maybe I missed it.

"It appears that my candidacy has ruffled some feathers within the local Republican party. I find that a shame, as I have been a registered Republican since I was 18 and consider myself a thoughtful and committed American who honestly wants what’s best for our country, my family, and my children.  I considered party affiliation carefully before deciding to run for office. While I don’t agree with 100% of the North Carolina GOP Platform, I agree with 90% of it."



90%?  Do the "Democrats for Lawson"  know about that stat?  Does your party affiliation appear anywhere on your campaign web site?   Why not? 90% of the GOP Platform.  You agree with.  90%!


my campaign blog.

Let's dispense with numerical estimates. More accurately, I've taken to stating that I agree with the party platform to the extent that it supports our United States Constitution.

I'd say the exact same thing about the Democratic party platform. Or even the Green party platform, for that matter.

Party platforms for federal office are redundant. The Constitution is the platform -- after all, the oath is to uphold and defend the Constitution. You might enjoy Adam Kokesh's take on the topic:



William (B.J.) Lawson, M.D.

Congressional Candidate, North Carolina's 4th District

In my opinion, it sounds like you'd agree with whomever you're pandering to at the moment.


You've learned well - from Ron Paul.


Democrats- beware.   

Sammy, I'd like to know whether you set up this thread to intentionally give Lawson an opening to post 10 comments in a row, or whether you are just being an unwitting tool of the Republican candidate. What's your role with the Lawson campign?

Abusing OP is not the way to impress voters, see the case of BetsyForJudge.

Did Lawson not already have an opening to post as many comments as he would have liked as a user on this website? Does Representative Price not have any right to or ability to respond here? Do those who disagree with Lawson not have any right or ability to respond to his points here?

I certainly share your suspicions that "Sammy" is at best a Lawson supporter or at worst a party or organizational shill. Yet I find it incredibly strange that you would label this as "abuse", regardless of who this "Sammy" person is and what his/her role is in the Lawson campaign. Here you have an active candidate for national office engaging, at least to some extent, the electorate in an open forum in which voters can actively challenge the points made directly. I fail to see that as anything other than a good thing.

I know Sammy, he is a real person. Sammy is is his name and not to be put in "quotation marks."

You are quite right that any candiate is welcome to post here at any time, Jeff. However, successful voter outreach usually takes the form of conversation, not spam. If BJ had posted 10 unprompted comments in a row, I would have thought he was laying it on pretty heavily (and hogging the Hot topics section of the front page).  Is it any different because Sammy left prompts for him? 

Again, BJ is welcome to participate here, but as we've seen with other candidates, engagement is more effective than carpet bombing.  I am really more interested is what Sammy is doing since I consider him a friend and a fellow worker for social justice.

Let's not jump to conclusions. I'll tell you who Sammy is.  He is one of my neighbors and he is not a shill for anyone.

I continue to be amazed that people are interested in the Price vs. Lawson race.  I understnad that some folks feel Price has been an inadequate leader on various issues, but let's get real: A vote for Lawson would be a protest vote only.  Lawson has no chance of winning whatsoever.

Personally, I voted (as I have about 15 times before) for David Price.

Mark & Ruby -- thanks for the clarification. I'm certainly sorry for jumping to incorrect conclusions if Sammy is not a Lawson supporter nor involved in Lawson's campaign.


Rudy, my apologies if I have infringed on the etiquette for this site.

 I am not a Lawson campaign person.  I am a constituent wishing to hear how the candidates respond to each other on substance: the issues.  In this case it is the issues as they each portray one another.  I know that there are Price issues according to Lawson.  I sincerely have not had time to post these and consequently requested that someone else please do it instead.  Unfortunately,  I can now imagine the fall-out that may happen if that post were to happen: it could even more easily be associated as a Lawson tactic since it would be 'Price according to Lawson.'Note that they would be the revers of one another and would be neutral for this reason.

Also, I apologize for the format that I chose, I thought that it could be useful for constituents to hear the response 'from the horses mouth' issue by issue.  I was hoping that Price could also respond.  I was not calculating the mechanics of how this site functions and the fact that multiple posts would give it a higher ranking and prominance.

I find it of value that lawson has responded to the perspective that Price has of him on the issues.  It would have been clearer and more thorough had he responded to these issue by issues.  I would hope for there to be an opportunity for Price to do the same .. if not here then somewhere else.


Thanks for the response, and no apology is needed. I just wanted to point out the extent to which you were facilitating what might otherwise look like Lawson spamming us with comments.  I too would love to see Price's responses, but I am starting to get aggravated at what feels like a concerted effort of "Democrats for Lawson" (such as Ray McKinnon who is on Lawson's staff) descending on OP and focusing only on that one race and no other local issues.

If Price had an interest in appealing to his progressive base, he or a surrogate would do well to get involved and respond here.  But I would be just as annoyed if he posted 10 or 20 comments in a day.

This is good stuff - I learned a lot. This is what blogs do best. Whatever you think, it's certainly a plus that Lawson is communicating here to us.

Look, everyone.  I understand the argument when you say  "just because someone has an R by their name doesn't mean that they are..."  (or a "D" depending on what decision you are rationalizing.)


BUT-  this year - more than ever WE NEED NUMBERS.  The D by the name really matters this time-- locally, state-level, and nationally.


This year- more than ever- PARTY MATTERS.  Hopefully by 2010 or 2012 we will have viable, third-party alternatives-- and some breathing room after our "time-out" period post-Bush.


But THIS YEAR- we need as many Democrats as possible in every office. 


So just this once (especially all of you libertarian/green/anarchist types) PLEASE CONSIDER--  strong majorities in all branches; appointments; committee assignments; funding, program priorities--  ALL depend on our strength in numbers.


EVERY D counts this time.  Libertarians, "moderate" Republicans, Independents-- while they may be fine people-- are NOT going to contribute to a strong majority party, which is what we need.


If you haven't voted already, I am begging you-- please consider the ramifications of your choices.


Republicans don't want compromise- unless it pulls us even further to the Right.  It's time the Left exerted some pressure-- for a change.

So don't worry - clean coal, nuclear power, support of Israel as it land-grabs & kills in Palestine, ramped up war in Afghanistan, resistance to single-payer health-care - all the issues you care about and the Democrats support will be strongly advocated for.

Thanks for stepping in, Ruby. The beauty of links is that you don't have to have these long posts.  If folks want to hear it from the horses' mouths, they can go check at Vote Smart, (links below) or you can link to BJ's statements on his site.  No need for excessive regurgitation.

Lawson: Price:

Also, Ruby, I still can't figure how an anonymous posting that starts "Price is a bought and paid for shill of the military-industrial complex, and who voted to destroy the dollar and ruin the value of Americans' savings through what one of your commenters laughingly calls the "recovery bill."" wasn't rejected. I can't see how that passes any test for moderating anonymous postings. If someone wants to say that fine, but they should have to put their name to it.  

David Beck
I struggled with whether to allow that particular comment, so I'll allow that I might have made the wrong decision.  It was definitely borderline.

Tomorrow morning at eight my guest on the Ethics Matters radio broadcast will be Republican candidate B. J. Lawson. Tune in to WCOM at 103.5 FM or listen online at the following Web site. Call in at 919-929-9601.          http://wcomfm.orgJames Coley

The Ethics Matters interview with Republican politician B. J. Lawson scheduled for Saturday was canceled due to weather. We hope to reschedule him.James Coley

Saturday morning at eight my guest on the Ethics Matters radio broadcast will be Republican candidate B. J. Lawson. This was rescheduled from February. Tune in to WCOM at 103.5 FM or listen online at the following Web site. Call in at 919-929-9601.

James Coley

My apologies to all who tuned in Saturday morning to listen to the interview with B. J. Lawson, which had been rescheduled from a snow day. I had to cancel it yet again because of a medical emergency. We hope to schedule him a third time, and that this time it will actually happen.

Katy's Conservative Corner site is calling his entry a surprise twist.  That he flipped his decision on getting into the race that now has 4 GOP contendors I don't think really matters, but that he's waited so late to enter a race when he lost Orange County of the tune 71.57%to 28.43% last time doesn't bode well.Back in August I believe, when other GOP candidates were campaigning already, when Lawson said he would not run, he posted on his website that he would not endorse a republican candidate who has asked for his support saying "we fundamentally disagree on the value of the Federal Reserve and its communist..."If the GOP primary ends up being about which republican is the least communist it could create some fractures.  I'd prefer that politicians who don't like an idea to jump straight into the explaination of why they don't like it.  I've seen enough of the "he supports communist/socialist/marxist ideas" finger pointing in politics during the last year to last a lifetime. And I recall from the debate I attended that Lawson seemed to be against federal funding for education, or to colleges to do research in the research triangle.  I know Lawson is anti-choice and anti-gay marriage, but thinks of them as states issues.  I imagine he's against this too:

"North Carolina Receives $545 Million for High-Speed Rail from American Recovery and Reinvestment ActGov. Bev Perdue announced today that North Carolina is receiving $545 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for further development of the Southeast High Speed Rail Corridor, a nearly 500-mile route that will allow trains to travel between Charlotte and Washington, D.C. at top speeds of up to 90-110 miles per hour and an average speed of 86 mph.“Building this high-speed rail corridor will put our people to work on critical infrastructure projects and boost local economies in North Carolina,” said Gov. Perdue. “This is a huge leap toward making high-speed rail in North Carolina a reality.”Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson announced the funding award today during a ceremony at the newly renovated Durham train station. The project is expected to create or maintain 4,800 private sector jobs in North Carolina and provide environmental and energy benefits through reduced congestion and improved air quality.“Every dollar we spend on high speed rail is an investment in job creation and in cleaning the air we all breathe,” said U.S. EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “Building high speed rail will put people in North Carolina to work right away, lay the foundation for long term growth and make travel faster and cheaper - all while reducing our impact on the environment.”Under the recovery funding, North Carolina received $520 million for improvements that will enable higher track speeds along the corridor between Raleigh and Charlotte and $25 million for projects to improve reliability of existing service from Raleigh north to Virginia. In addition, Virginia received $75 million for improvements to the Richmond to Washington, D.C. section of the Southeast High Speed Rail Corridor.“We’ve been working with our partners in multiple states to lay the foundation for a high-speed rail network that will serve as the Main Street of the East Coast,” said state Transportation Secretary Gene Conti. “These funds will help us realize that vision and continue our efforts here in North Carolina to build a 21st century transportation network that incorporates all modes of travel.”Since the USDOT designated Charlotte to Washington, D.C. as a high-speed rail corridor in 1992, the N.C. Department of Transportation has invested more than $300 million in the state’s intercity passenger rail service for renovation and construction of train stations, track work improvements and corridor preservation projects in order to pave the way for high-speed service. The high-speed rail corridor funding award meshes with the goals outlined in NCDOT’s new Complete Streets policy, which calls for a diverse transportation infrastructure that encompasses all modes of travel, from bicycles and ferries to cars and rail. The corridor project is also in conjunction with the Statewide Logistics Plan, which leverages the state’s assets to improve the economic well-being of all North Carolinians.  

I also wasn't a fan last time of Lawson going by one of the Congressman's regional offices, and reccording a video chastizing him for not being at that specific office at that specific time in a video entitled "Nobody Home."  There are some valid complaints one could make about David Price, but that he is bad at listening to and providing constituent services is not one of them and it came across to me as unecessarily negative.

He has some good stances. I asked him once why he wasn't an independent instead of a Republican and he just shrugged it off, laughingly responding that I had a good point. I can hardly hold my nose tight enough to vote for most Democrats, but you've got to have a huge screw loose to identify yourself with the Republicans.


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