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Sunday, August 26, 2007

Grover Cleveland Social Club

Grover who? You know, that guy who was President back near the turn of the 20th Century. Tonight was the first meeting of our Grover Cleveland social club and from the turnout, I'd have to say it was a huge success. The club is the brainchild of Steve Greenhut, John Seiler, and Tony Bushala who are the founding members. This is an email from Steve that describes the club and its mission:
The purpose of the club is to discuss politics and enjoy those things that the 22nd and 24th president (he was elected to two terms, non-consecutively) enjoyed: cigars, beer and good food. We'll even have some live music, although it will be a bit more hip than the music the former president enjoyed.

There is no charge. This is not a fund-raiser. It is a casual get-together and party. The guest speakers will be Orange County Supervisor Chris Norby and Orange County Register columnist Steven Greenhut.

Why Grover Cleveland?

Cleveland was probably the last great president. The one-time Buffalo mayor and New York governor stuck by his principles, even in the face of opposition from powerful interest groups. He was honorable and self-effacing. If a bill did not conform to the Constitution, he vetoed it. He was more than willing to lose the next election than to compromise his core beliefs, which were consistent with those of the founders. He rebuked special interests, refused to waste tax dollars and kept the country out of war. He believed in states' rights and stood up to powerful unions. He was a Democrat who crossed partisan lines, gaining strong support from reform-minded Republican mugwumps. Cleveland epitomized the best traditions in law enforcement -- in 1870 he was elected sheriff of Erie County, N.Y., and, as one report puts it , "carried out at least two hangings of condemned criminals, refusing to delegate such unpleasant work to others."

Members of our social club (and invitees) have diverse views, and come from different parties. We want to debate things, not preach to the choir. But, in general, we believe in limited, open government and in non-interventionism in foreign affairs. We believe that both major parties are flip sides of the same big-government, empire-building coin. We believe that elected officials should stand up for the public against special interests, and that they should have character and integrity, rather than be driven by polls, focus groups and by their own ambition. Any politician unwilling to lose an election because of taking an unpopular position is not worthy of Grover Cleveland's or our support!

Mostly, we believe in good beer, fine cigars, tasty barbecue and boisterous conversation! This is, after all, a social club that will NOT endorse politicians, help political parties, make contributions nor do anything more than meet, drink and be merry. (Memberships will be available at no charge, although some future events will have a nominal cost to cover food, cigars and beer.)
I want to thank the Bushalas for hosting us and to Steve & John for such a great idea. It was a fun night. I hope we can make this at least an annual event Steve, John & Tony(hint, hint). Oh yeah, a lot of Ron Paul supporters in the house to from what I gathered.


  • At 11:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Grover Cleveland is an interesting choice to name this club after since he had an illegitimate child. Some people thought he was a ‘Dirty Old Man”. He bought a baby carriage for his friend and law partner’s baby daughter. After the law partner’s death, Cleveland became her legal guardian. Oh yeah! He later married her too. She was 27 years younger than him. We should be so lucky! So integrity & honor may not have been his best qualities.

  • At 8:09 PM, Blogger Larry Gilbert said…

    Anonymous. As you choose to respond with a negative comment let me cite another example of perhaps one of your hero's. Have you ever heard of Bill Clinton?

    Having attended this event let me apologize for not sending you an invite. Sadly that would not have been possible because you hide your identity as "anonymous." This meeting, of around 60 sharp citizens and elected officials, representing multiple political parties and opinions, was a fun evening. You missed a great time to meet others who might just agree with your position on policy matters.

    While I had no participation in the name or formation of this new social club, reading his bio on google is very impressive. You might check it out instead of spending time digging in his laundry basket.

  • At 10:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Larry, I don't need to read google. I read the 450 page book "GROVER CLEVELAND' by Alyn Brodsky. I recommend you read it. I agree that Cleveland did many good things. However, ignoring the negative things about him to focus only on the positive is misleading.

  • At 9:43 AM, Blogger Allan Bartlett said…

    I don't think we're ignoring his bad things Anonymous. Heck, all presidents have negative things on their record. I think on balance though, Cleveland was a good President.

  • At 3:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    An interesting note about an April Fool's joke enshrined into law by racial activists. Also, an interesting anecdote about how Cleveland was man enough to change his mind when he was wrong:

    The Rest of the Rest of the Story


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