QUIZ: Candidate or Criminal?

Telling politicians from those in the pen isn't easy — just take their words for it
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  December 21, 2011

122311_Politics_main

Of the 16 passages printed below, half were written or spoken by a 2012 Republican candidate for president. The other half were written by incarcerated criminals. Can you tell the difference?

>> Click here for all the answers. <<

1) We are tired of being told how much salt we can put on our food, what windows we can buy for our house, what kind of cars we can drive, what kinds of guns we can own, what kind of prayers we are allowed to say and where we can say them, what political speech we are allowed to use to elect candidates, what kind of energy we can use, what kind of food we can grow, what doctor we can see, and countless other restrictions on our right to live as we see fit. Our cause is simple: to restore the balance of power intended by our Founders but forsaken by secular progressives determined to say what government will do for the people rather than allowing people to do what they can do for themselves.

2) As I grew older, I came to see forces at work that were making America a worse place, not a better place. Certain forces were seeking to undermine the family, to undermine the traditional structures of our society, and, indeed, to undermine all the moral and political achievements of our Judeo-Christian heritage. Government officials were praising, even subsidizing, the worst kinds of behavior. The pundits of the era, speaking down to us from their high perches in their ivory towers, called it "justice" and "liberation." But here on the ground, in real-world America, where I was living, the rest of us could see that the government was fostering injustice and anarchy.

3) Separation of church and state means severing the concept of folk from government — that's absurd! Government, through separation of church and state, prevents the forming of a unified ethnostate, and promotes sectarian conflict and multiculturalism. Diversity is a tool of empire, wherein a small, cohesive minority lords it over a large, diverse, quarreling majority.

4) There is a determined group of radicals in the United States who outright oppose American Exceptionalism. Often convinced America is a uniquely brutal, racist, and malevolent country, these malcontents struggle to reduce American power and transform our political and economic systems into the kind of statist model that is now failing across Europe. You don't need to look hard today to find this radical view, especially in the mainstream media and among left-wing pundits.

5) I find it sad that most people are oblivious to what is really going on in our country and our world. Some people would call me a conspiracy theorist, but I would say I am a seeker of truth, and to do that you have to be open-minded and willing to hear from all sides. There is a lot that goes on behind closed doors with the elites of the world that we don't know about. And the mainstream media only reports so much.

6) Forget the constant naysayers and do-nothings who hide behind economists and their think-tank experts. People need jobs now. The country needs to be competitive now. America needs to be Americans now.

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