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Doug: How do you know when a GOP election ad is lying? It’s lips move, and religious conservatives will do whatever it takes to force religion on all children in public schools. Their newest trick, fake school assemblies. I’m Doug Berger
and this. Is secular Left as this episode comes out we are getting closer to election day in. And as we get closer and as early voting starts up in most places in October you’re gonna see a ramp up of political ads on tv, on radio, on the internet, and newspapers. And so you have two different kinds of ads. You have a candidate, a candidate based ad who the candidate actually produces the ad and, and sends it out.
And usually you can tell that because at the end the candidate says, I’m Joe Schmo and I approve this message. And that’s kind of required that they have to do that if it’s from their campaign. Then you have the second type, which is from the d, the, the. What they call the advocacy or the issue organizations, they don’t necess, They’re not necessarily the candidate, but they definitely are endorsing a particular candidate.
And when they do that, you have to very be very careful about whether or not you trust that ad because a lot of times in the issue or advocacy ads, They’re lying. More than likely. If it’s a Republican based, they’re lying. If it’s a Democrat issue group they’re not necessarily lying. They might be misstating or misleading.
And you’re, and you’re saying, Doug, how come that’s not lying? Well, Misstating or misleading means that people that put out these ads will say, Let’s say, Joe beats his wife. You know, that’s obviously lying unless they have proof, but they could say, Well, Joe doesn’t get along with women because of X, because he didn’t pass X bill or because he voted for this bill.
Well, that may not be entirely correct. and just because somebody votes a certain way doesn’t mean that they have any preconceived notions, because a lot of times when the legislature, any legislature is consider here considering a bill, sometimes people vote for it, even if they disagree with the bill and they vote for it because they see that the long term common goal for that bill is more important than their individual thing.
Now, in the political landscape that we have today, A lot of political parties want purity, and so they don’t want certain political parties voting on certain bill, so that’s why you have The Republicans didn’t vote. None of the Republicans voted for the the Inflation reduction Act. Okay? Nobody in the house, nobody in the Senate voted for those bills or the bill back.
Better plan. Nobody, no Republican voted. . And the reason why is because they don’t want to give President Biden a quote win. They don’t want them to take that bill and see, see what I did. And so it just so happens currently that makeup of the Congress as such that if you can just get a few more people on your side, you can get it passed.
So that’s what happened on some of that. Or if, or like in the Inflation reduction Act, if you water it down, , some people will agree to it. All right, so you have the issue oriented ads where they attack a particular person running that saying they’re soft on crime or, or they weren’t in the military, or they, whatever.
Then you have the candidate ads where they’re saying, saying, You know, my co, my opponent sucks. Vote for me. I approve this message. So what I wanna do is I wanna play two ads that have aired recently on local TV where I’m at. One is an issue oriented ad against Tim Ryan, who is running for the US Senate here in Ohio.
And it concerns covid relief money that was given out during the pandemic. and one of the points points out that supposedly Tim Ryan voted to approve these monies that somehow went to criminals hardened. Convicted criminals or, so the ad goes, So let’s, let’s take a listen to that and then I’ll, I’ll come back and discuss it.
Political Ad: It’s bad enough. Taxing. Tim Ryan helped Biden raise taxes on Ohio families worse. Ryan allowed our tax dollars to go to covid relief checks for the Boston Marathon Bomber and hundreds of thousands of other convicted murderers and criminals in prison. The Ryan spend almost a billion dollars in covid checks, going to jailed hardened criminals.
Taxing Tim Ryan, Higher taxes, Criminal spending. Senate Leadership Fund is responsible for the content of this advertising.
Doug: Let’s set aside the fact that the Inflation reduction Act did not create taxes on people. That that’s a lie. That’s a complete lie. It’s been debunked several times. , even the congressional research service or the people that that score these bills, said that it would not add added taxes to people.
What the Republicans get upset about is that, that businesses would have to pass on these taxes that they get taxed with onto co consumers. So they claim that the tax is being raised on people. Which is not the case, so let’s just get that outta the way right now. That is, that is an outright lie, but I wanted to talk about the other part of this ad.
Okay, So most people are like, Oh no, we gave money to criminals. What will we do? What will we do? Oh no, we can’t vote for. Okay, well, CNN did a fact check on this because it came up back in last year, back in March of 2021 in Senator Tom Cotton a Republican was attacking Democrats for passing a pandemic relief bill that will send money to prisoners.
And he specifically mentioned that zocar to Ssar, the Boston bomb. And saying that he’ll be getting $1,400 stimulus check and, and all these other people like Dylan Roof, the perpetrator of the 2015 massacre at the renowned black church in Charleston, and he complained again that prisoners getting checks during the Fox News appearance back in, in March of 2021 on Fox News.
Well, here is kind of the, the facts that were left out of that ad and on this attack point. Okay. Prisoners received checks from both the pandemic relief bills that were passed during the previous administration during the Trump administration, and Cotton voted for both of. Neither the bill that Trump signed with cotton support in March, nor the Bill Trump signed with cotton support in December contain any language prohibiting prisoners from getting relief funding.
You know, and people will say, Well, they must have forgot or left it out. Well, they realized this after they passed it. The first one. And so they sent guidance to the IRS telling them to exclude prisoners from getting the money. Well, some of the prisoners found a lawyer and organized a class action lawsuit against the government and.
And a federal judge ruled that the government had to let prisoners access the cash. They claimed that the IRS had no authority to prevent the prisoners from getting the money. And so when the second bill was passed the following December they didn’t, didn’t try to do the same thing. Now, it’s interesting that they knew that this happened, that they couldn’t do it, but then they still passed a second one and didn’t put the language in excluding prisoners.
So fast forward to the Biden administration and they have the the Covid Relief bill that passed. Early in 2021 and it also did not include it. Now, Tom Cotton in the fact check says that he was mad because they had offered an amendment to that bill to explicitly prohibit add language to the bill that would explicitly prohibit prisoners and all of the Democrats voted against it.
So there’s just a minute, small point. In that ad. However, the other thing that isn’t mentioned in that ad than the political ad that is mentioned in the fact check was that the prisoners would have to notify the IRS and give them their updated information in order to get that money. Also, a lot of times, a lot of these prisoners that are in.
They have fines and court costs to pay and if they get any money into their accounts, cuz they all have commissary accounts to pay for things like food, you know, snack foods and shoes and things like that. If they got anything in their commissary account, part of that would be sliced off to pay their fines and court.
I am very doubtful that the Boston Bomber got a check. I’m very doubtful that Dylan Roof got a check because one, they would have to know that this was happening at two. They would have to submit the information, and there’s a, a, a problem with doing that. And it said that in, in, in the fact check it said, Wa Bertram, a prison policy initiative spokesperson, said that prisoners continue to have a lot of trouble accessing their money from the first and second relief bills.
Says one common problem is the IRS sending people in prison. These prepaid debit cards rather than checks and debit cards are useless in prison. Lots of people have applied to receive checks that they never got last year and have heard nothing from the irs. And for people who are getting the checks, we’re still seeing criminal justice systems, child support agencies, and even private companies taking hundreds of dollars out before the check ever reaches the person.
Basically this issue oriented ad inferring that Tim Ryan has soft on crime by giving pandemic relief to prisoners forgets the fact that. The Trump administration also gave pandemic relief money to prisoners, and it also doesn’t show that that the prisoners would have a heck of a time trying to get the money, and many of them have had a heck of a time getting the money.
So, I mean that, that’s probably a policy discussion for another time. Whether or not convicted felons serving time should receive money from the government. Most of ’em don’t. Most, most of ’em can’t receive social security or, or disability benefits when they’re in prison because the law is structured in a way to punish the prison.
We’re breaking the law by cutting off their benefits, and so that, that’s something that, that’s something else that needs to be discussed. Maybe in a future episode we might talk. Now this next ad that I wanna play for you is for Marcy Captor. She is running for the ninth Congressional District here in Ohio, which currently due to the legal gerrymandered maps that were forced, that the state was forced to use by the federal courts because the Ohio G G O P failed to make legal maps.
Marcy was Gerrymandered into a more favorable Republican area, and it runs from Toledo West towards the Indiana border. Anyway, so she is running this ad against JR Ew Majeski. He, his claim to fame is he painted a Trump 2020 banner on his front yard in Port Clinton and made the news. So now he was best buds with, with the right wingers.
And then it comes out that he’s a supporter of the QAN on con conspiracy theory people. It also turns out that he was present at the Capital during the January 6th insurrection. He claims he never went inside, but there are pictures of him inside the. . Another thing that has happened recently is that people caught him misstating his military service in that he did serve in the Air Force.
He claimed that he deployed to Afghanistan, but there has been no proof at this time that he ever served in Afghanistan, that he ever was deployed. He was deployed to Cutter, which is in that theater, and so, He would be in a combat zone, but he did. But there has been no records found that he served any time in Afghanistan other than flying in and flying out cuz he was a cargo loader for airplanes.
The other little tidbit that was found out by looking at his public records, his military records, is that he was demoted during his service. and he had explained being demoted that he was involved in a bar brawl. What actually happened was he was stopped for drunk driving on an air base in Japan and instead and this was like shortly after he entered the service and instead of working to try to get his rank back, he did not, and he stayed the lower rank for the rest of his service.
And so as these insurrectionist Republicans do is they attack the media for bringing up these true stories. Okay, Well, Marcy’s ad really isn’t about his military servicer, his embellishment of his military service. It’s more, it’s cons. She found a conservative Republican who does not support ews.
And so this is him talking in the. And I just want you to listen cuz the, the bonus, the, the, the tag at the end is perfect and I, every time I hear it, I laugh. So here is Marcy’s ad
Political Ad: I’m the conservative Republican. I support Mike DeWine and Rob Portman, But JR Majeski, he’s. Too extreme. He supports QAN on a group.
The FBI calls a domestic terrorist threat, and he wants Ohio to leave the United States. Listen, every state that went red should seceded from the United States Domestic terrorism,
violence secession. That’s not conservative. That’s
dangerous. I can’t support Jeremy Majeski.
Marcy Captor and I approve this message.
There’s something wrong with that guy.
Doug: Okay, Now what is, what’s different about that ad? And I really like that there’s something wrong with our. I love that part, but, but what is different between that ad and that issue oriented ad against Tim Ryan is that Marcy’s ad is truthful. Truthful. She’s not lying about Majeski.
You know, and they, and they have what they call the kids these days called the receipts. You know, they have a, a audio of him talking about seceding from the union. They have the photographs of him at the insurrection. They have the video that he used during the primary of him looking all tough with his AR 15 and, and trying to be a tough guy.
And, and that guy that is conservative republican. Who supports D Divine and Portman. Why? I don’t know. But anyway, he says, You know, that guy’s just too crazy. Majeski should not be in office. And so, like I said, Marcy’s ad is truthful and it is it’s characterization of her opponent. . All right. And, and she has the proof, the, the Tim Ryan proof.
If you look at the, if you watch the ad and you freeze frame, cuz they, they include supposed citations. Most of them are the fact that he voted for a bill that did this. And the other thing was that it was from like the Washington Examiner, which is a conservative rag. Because there’s another, Well, I might be confusing that with another ad.
There’s another ad that tries to tie him to Nancy Pelosi where they show a clip of him with talking to Rachel Maddow. And she says, So you, you don’t just like Nancy Pelosi, you love Nancy Pelosi. And Ryan says, Yes, I love Nancy Pelosi. And it’s like, dun, dun dun. when actuality, the actual interview was done at a time when Tim Ryan was going, was thought to ha going to challenge Pelosi for the speakership when, when the Democrats won back the Congress eventually he was persuaded not to do that and so this was him going on a major news network and, and kissing the ring as it.
So, of course he’s gonna say, I love Nancy Pelosi because he didn’t want to be punished for going against her to get the speakership. So anyway, that’s what I wanted to do is I wanted to highlight the differences, the issue oriented ad and the candidate ad, and how the issue oriented ad is almost always just.
Almost always, and the candidate ad in this case was truthful. I just don’t trust any conservative ad at all because like I said, they , they take one little thing and blow it out of proportion or they just make stuff up. And so it’s always behooves you. As a, as a consumer of information to fact, check some of the stuff.
If it, if it sounds wrong or you’re, or you start feeling outraged about it, you know, check it out, see if there’s a fact, check about it, or look into the details and that that will help you be a more informed voter.
For more information about any of the topics covered in this episode, check out Our show notes at Secular left us.
For those of us who attended school during our younger years. Remember, the best part of any school day was either, there’s gonna be a film during class. or, and I’m dating myself a film strip during class, or they would roll in the TV for a video tape or, or whatever. I know they’d probably do streaming now, but that was, you know, they’d roll in the, the audio visual cart with the TV and you’re like, Yes, we’re not gonna have to study.
The second greatest thing about school sometimes was the school assembly. , that’s when they would have all the kids come into the either the auditorium or the C auditorium or the gym, and they. Sit and listen to a speaker or maybe see a presentation. I know some comedy shows have pared the school assembly, like they’d have like some kind of singing, people making crude comments or something like that.
But you know, a lot of these school assemblies are it, It’s what, how you. Do presentations about certain things like character building or don’t bully kids, or, you know, just say no to drugs. That’s, that was a big one back, back in my day too. Anyway, so you have these school assemblies and it’s, it’s kind of big business.
These groups and people, for the most part, they charge money to come in and speak to a. . And so it comes out of the school budget. It’s taxpayer money. Well, the religious conservatives in this country have latched onto this as a revenue stream, I guess, and it’s also they can use it to indoctrinate children and, and try to get them to come to church.
And so you might be saying, Doug, how, how does that happen? Well, There’s a, a this is how they do it, is they get around the church and state separation is, they offer a school assembly on a, should be a non-controversial issue. Let’s say character building. And they come to the school or, or somebody tells the school about it and the school inquires and they said, You know, we can bring this certain speaker to your school.
It’s gonna cost a certain amount of money, but you know, maybe somebody donates money to have it done or whatever. It’s gonna cost money. We’ll come in, we’ll give you a presentation. The school is like, Great, cuz then we don’t have to do something on on our own. So the speaker comes in, They’re a motivational speaker.
They give a great program, get to co kids, all jazzed up about whatever topic it is, whether it’s anti-bullying or character building or whatever. And then the speaker says, Hey, by the way, if you’d like more of this great assembly experience, why don’t you come to St. Mark’s Lutheran Church tonight at 7:00 PM.
Or come back to the gym tonight after school at 7:00 PM for more of this for a concert or another extension of the assembly. And so that’s how they get around because this, this outside extension to the school assembly. Is a religious service. It’s a they give testimony. They invite kids to a church.
They talk about God and Jesus, and because it’s outside the school time, it’s perfectly legal. It’s un, I think it’s unethical because a lot of times these school assemblies during the day, these supposed secular school assemblies during the day are mandatory. And so you have these impressionable kids and they get, they get motivated by this speaker, and the speaker says, Come on, you want to keep feeling this?
Come on tonight. And they come out tonight and they’re vulnerable and they get exposed to religious teachings or testimonies or prayer or whatever. And so that’s how this, that’s how that system works. And, and so you have to be very careful what, what motivational speaker you deal with or what company.
Cuz a lot of these are company, not companies, but not for profit. They’re not pro non-profit companies that have a, a network of speakers. . We had something that happened like that just a coup last week, a week or two ago, up in Bedford, Michigan, which is a suburb of Toledo, and they had this group come in and it was called Carry the Cure.
and it builds itself as a nonprofit organization that utilizes clinical tools, cultural traditions, and faith-based methods to offer communities comprehensive suicide and abuse prevention and healthy lifestyle skills. The problem is that Carry the Cure leans more on the face based methods rather than clinical tools.
They don’t use any science, they don’t offer any science. Anything like that. But, but they do use a Native American motif. The, the person that does the speaking part is native Alaskan, and that’s where this group care, the cure got started. And so they, they disguise their, their attempt at religious indoctrination.
And something that definitely is not controversial and that suicide prevention and abuse prevention, you know, there’s, nobody would be opposed to having a presentation about that. And so they had this in Bedford week or two ago. They required students to attend. They had two, two assemblies on one day at, at like 12 o’clock and the other day at 1 45.
And then that night, on, on the second day, they were going to have a program, an extension of this assembly at seven o’clock at night. And that was sponsored by a local church, but they were gonna have it at the school, which again, is perfectly legal. For a religious group to rent out a school room after school and invite, You know what, What I have a problem with and what a lot of people have a problem with is the fact that the, these speakers are coming into the school and we’re paying taxpayer money to pay them to give these presentations and invite our kids to church.
you know, and that’s just unethical. It’s, you know, it’s legal, but it’s unethical because they should be upfront about it. That this is, go, you know, we’re a religious group and we’re doing this to prevent whatever it is, suicide, do, suicide prevention. You know, just make it, make it more, make it more transparent and also don’t require students to.
Or at least send a note home before the event to notify parents so the parents can opt out. Like beforehand without, without, you know, I, I think it shouldn’t be an opt out. It should be an opt in that a note should go home and then say, you know, if you want your kid to attend, sign here. So at least then the parents know what’s going on.
Cuz you know, you see in the news all these right wingers and and religious conservatives going nuts over their children being indoctrinated in socialism. But it seems to be okay to indoctrinate them in Christianity, which is the real thing that’s happening when these groups come in. And the fact that they’re spending taxpayer dollars to pay for these people.
We have a group here in Ohio called Stand for Truth Ministries, who do the same exact thing. In fact, they have three separate companies and they make no bones about what they’re attempting. They have relevant speakers. That’s the, the secular quote unquote secular part of the school assemblies.
Then they have Stand for Truth Ministries, which does the outside of school hour indoctrination part. And then the third part they have is they’re the ones that develop the life. The Lifewise academies and I talked in a previous episode about these, these people going in, It’s a release.
Religious education. This is Bible, Bible study that kids go to off campus during the school day. And so this, this company that has the Stand for Truth Ministries is nonprofit in Ohio and they have relevant speakers, the ministry, and then they have the release time educat. Now, just so we’re clear here this Stanford Truth Ministry is run by j gentleman named Joel Penton.
And in his bio he says that he was on the Ohio State University football team and the early s was on the team when they won the national championship in 2000 and in three. in which he was, and he won the Danny Warhol trophy for humanitarianism, which is true. But he didn’t start for the Ohio State Buckeyes.
He was, he, he was a in on the bench most of the time, which I’m not taking anything away from him, but he started this Stand for Truth Ministry to be a motivational speaker for kids and the stand for truth ministries also had another company called Student Impact, which also was the same thing.
And, and because they’re a nonprofit commercial operation, they had to file what’s called a nine 90 tax return. And I looked at it for 2019 and. Joel Penton was the only one that was listed as receiving any funds, any revenue for this company and for ni for 2019, he got over $300,000, close to $350,000 in speaking fees in, in 2019.
That’s taxpayer money. , and that’s going into his. So schools are paying these speakers some large sums of money to total, You know, I don’t know how many speaking engagements he actually did in 2019, but I’m sure he’s making probably several, several hundred dollars, several thousand dollars at least per speaking, you know, for each speaking event.
But in 2019, he made almost $350,000. Just from speaking fees. And, and again, that’s taxpayer money that’s going because that money is going to the ministry. It was reported on their nine 90. So that’s supporting religious education or religious indoctrination of children. So, So, yeah, Joel Penton, he, he runs that, he’s a, you know, he’s a decent guy.
I haven’t heard any bad things about him. He’s not in the news negative for any negative things. And what he’s doing is a good thing, you know? think on the website one of his topics was making good choices. You know, I don’t have a problem with that. Yes, we should try to help kids make good choices.
But again, it’s the after school stuff that I have a problem with, and that is they are using the school day, being paid for a mandatory school assembly to invite kids to a church service. And I think that parents and people who are concerned about that, about how unethical that process is either need to demand more transparency in in school assembly programming, or they need to stop using obvious religious faith-based groups to do these assemblies.
Because none of this stuff, suicide prevention, abuse prevention, making good choices, character building, none of those topics are exclusive to religion. You can find secular non-religious groups to pro put on those school assemblies. I know they’re out there. And they can, and that can be done. And we need to start doing that because look how that led right to the release time education.
And, and like I said on their website, on Stanford Truth Ministries, they make it clear that that is their goal is to, to butter ’em up during the quote secular. School assembly. Invite them to the church service at night and then get them with the release time religious education. , which is strictly Christianity, and so that is just, we just need more transparency and stop spending taxpayer money to support religious
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