At PowerLine, Paul Mirengoff analyzes a Politico article that attempts to assess the political fallout from Obamacare. The Politico writers, says Mirengoff, acknowledge that those in the individual insurance market aren’t feeling the love for the Democrats now, but imply that the majority of these people would have voted Republican in any event. Mirengoff notes, though, this impression is belied by facts in the Politico article:
But later in the article we learn that, according to a survey by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, nearly half of those who brought their own insurance are between the ages of 18 and 44. We also learn, thanks to a poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, that there is no statistically significant difference between the political party affiliation of those who buy their own health care.
To be sure, when pressed, more people in this group say they lean Republican than Democrat. But the Kaiser poll clearly supports my statement that the party allegiance of Obamacare losers (at least this set of them) is split. Moreover, as one analyst quoted by Politico says, anger over cancellation letters is likely to cross party lines.
In other words, actual numbers suggest that the first wave of Obamacare victims may turn some Democrats into Republican voters, at least temporarily.
Obama and the Democrats, however, are counting on the fact that, for every voter who turns against the Dems because he lost his insurance, his rates went up, and his coverage quality went down, the Dems will still gain voters who got insurance despite preexisting conditions or who benefited from the subsidies that voters with sticker shock are funding. Just as Republicans fear the moment when 51% or more of Americans get government hand-outs, the Democrats look forward to the moment when 51% or more of Americans look to the government for goodies.
What I think both the Democrats and the Republicans are forgetting is that a large segment of that 51% doesn’t vote. How do I know this? Because I have a family member who is part of that 51%. I love this family member, who is an honest, decent person with a great deal of integrity. Nevertheless, her choice of friends leaves something to be desired. (And no, I don’t know what bizarre combination of nature, nurture, and peer pressure resulted in me being a very wholesome professional living an upper-middle-class life in a chi-chi suburb surrounded by children and dogs, while she ended up being a college drop-out living in a trailer park.)
This gal’s friends all get some form of welfare: foods stamps, welfare checks, free clinic health care, etc. Many of them dropped out the employment market years ago. To the extent that they are almost entirely dependent on government largesse, it is in their best interest to vote Democrat. Obamacare definitely increases their fealty to the Democrat party.
The problem that the Democrats have with this cohort, however, is that, while it’s in these people’s best interests to vote Democrat, the same pathologies that leave them dependent on government also mean that most of them can’t or won’t vote. Some are convicted felons (with their criminal records invariably tied to substance abuse), so they can’t vote. All of them are eternally disorganized. A combination of substance abuse, mental health disorders, and old-fashioned stupidity means that these people cannot get their acts together sufficiently to voter their own interests. Most aren’t even registered, and wouldn’t know what to do if they were.
While these people are the Democrats’ natural constituency, they aren’t Democrat voters. Sure, if you do a man on the street interview with one of these people, he’ll talk the party line and sound like he’ll be the first ones at the polls on election day. If you were to go to his house on election day, though, you’d discover him slumped on the couch, beer in one hand and doobie in the other, unaware that he missed his opportunity to keep those welfare checks coming.
Ironically, for a long time, those who have repeatedly voted Democrat for the benefit of this welfare class probably aren’t themselves recipients of welfare. Instead, they’re the true believers, from the working class on up, who look at these pathetic, disorganized, drunk, and drugged masses and think that a vote for the Democrats, by keeping the welfare spigot open, will help these people. Put another way, when we see Democrats win, it’s not because the welfare crowd cast the votes, it’s because the bleeding-heart crowd did it on their behalf.
I realize, of course, that this is a simplification that doesn’t take into account functional poor people who believe that they can survive only with government handouts and who make damn sure to vote for the party in charge of the handouts. These are the voters Republicans need to reach, so that we can explain to them that the Democrats are rather quickly killing off the working- and middle-class geese who have been laying the golden eggs that have then been redistributed to the welfare class. Destroy your tax base and there’s no more welfare. These same people need to be convinced that welfare does not need to be a way of life. And more specifically, blacks need to understand that, just because slavery was work, not all work is slavery.
Obamacare is going to have a very profound effect on Democrat voters, I suspect, but not in the way Democrats hope and Republicans fear. The Democrats screwed by Obamacare and insulted by Obama’s lies will have their “come to Jesus moments” and may well shift political allegiance, even if only temporarily. On the flip side, those who voted (and I mean actually cast a vote) for the Democrats and who are not screwed, will continue to vote Democrat. But the poorest people, the ones who now have heavily subsidized, gold-plated health insurance, will not suddenly rush to the polls. Health insurance or not, their pathologies will continue to render them incapable of the mental organization required for sending in an absentee ballot or getting out of the house and to the polling station on election day.
Obamacare fails at so many levels it’s hard to count them. It fails because it’s the only piece of significant legislation in American history to be passed on strict partisan lines, using procedural tricks and bribes, and with a majority of American people disapproving of it. It fails because its implementation violates American religious freedom insofar as it forces people of faith to fund abortion and birth control. It fails because the administration knowingly used lies to pass it, a tactic that has a legal name: fraud.
Obamacare fails because it turns people into slaves to the government, making its opponents the new abolitionists. It fails because tens of millions of Americans will lose the insurance they were promised they could keep. It fails because it raises insurance costs for millions of Americans who believed Obama’s blatant lie that their average annual costs would decrease substantially. And of course, it fails because the Obamacare exchanges are so dysfunctional that the only parts that work are the routine breaches of privacy.
Right now, owing to all those failures, Americans are not happy with either Obama or Obamacare. Democrats are unsympathetic. Rep. Steve Cohen (D., Tenn.) sloughed off American concerns. According to the National Journal, he had a simple message for Americans: “Change is hard. Get over it. Barack Obama is president, and the Affordable Care Act is the law.”
Actually, this is not a new Democrat message. In the years preceding the Civil War, they kept telling Americans to “get used to” slavery, because “it’s the law.” And in the post-Civil War era, when Jim Crow laws depriving blacks of their civil rights were enacted throughout the South, the Democrats had the same message: “Get over it. It’s the law.”
Put another way, whenever slavery is at issue — and this is true whether it shows itself straightforwardly as “slavery,” or masquerades under such euphemisms as “Jim Crow” or “Obamacare” — the Democrat message has been the same for 160 years: “Get over it. It’s the law.”
(I originally wrote this post for Mr. Conservative.)
The repulsive Democrat Rep. Alan Grayson made news yesterday by putting out a fundraising letter that likens the Tea Party to the KKK (which, during its heyday, was an entirely Democrat organization):
Today, in a very timely way, Caped Crusader sent me the first sensible gun-control proposal I’ve seen, when that gets to the heart of the violence underlying gun crime:
In 1863 a Democrat shot and killed Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States.
In 1881 a left wing radical Democrat shot James Garfield, President of the United States, who later died from the wound.
In 1963 a radical left wing socialist shot and killed John F. Kennedy, President of the United States.
In 1975 a left wing radical Democrat fired shots at Gerald Ford, President of the United States.
In 1983 a registered Democrat shot and wounded Ronald Reagan, President of the United States.
In 1984 James Hubert, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 22 people in a McDonalds restaurant.
In 1986 Patrick Sherrill, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 15 people in an Oklahoma post office.
In 1990 James Pough, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 10 people at a GMAC office.
In 1991 George Hennard, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 23 people in a Luby’s cafeteria.
In 1995 James Daniel Simpson, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 5 coworkers in a Texas laboratory.
In 1999 Larry Asbrook, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 8 people at a church service.
In 2001 a left wing radical Democrat fired shots at the White House in a failed attempt to kill George W. Bush, President of the US.
In 2003 Douglas Williams, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 7 people at a Lockheed Martin plant.
In 2007 a registered Democrat named Seung – Hui Cho, shot and killed 32 people in Virginia Tech.
In 2010 a mentally ill registered Democrat named Jared Lee Loughner, shot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killed 6 others.
In 2011 a registered Democrat named James Holmes, went into a movie theater and shot and killed 12 people.
In 2012 Andrew Engeldinger, a disgruntled Democrat, shot and killed 7 people in Minneapolis.
In 2013 Adam Lazna, the child of a registered Democrat, shot and killed 26 people in a school.
Recently, an angry Democrat shot 12 at a Navy ship yard.
One could go on, but you get the point, even if the media does not. Clearly, there is a problem with Democrats and guns.
No NRA member, Tea Party member, or Republican conservatives are involved.
SOLUTION: It should be illegal for Democrats to own guns.
Best idea I’ve heard to date. JUST SAYING.
When it comes to my cold, I’m seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. Whew! I’m hoping to be up to full blogging speed soon but, in the meanwhile, here are things I found when doing my usual morning reading rounds:
This is a marvelous paragraph from Karen McQuillan’s generally marvelous article about Obamacare’s failures:
People with common sense and reality-based principles — in a word, conservatives — understand that government programs are by definition political. Politicians and bureaucrats are not personally accountable for failure, as in the private sector, so failure is acceptable to them. Cost overruns, fraud, and poor service are the norm in government programs for a reason.
Randall Hoven, who treats numbers with respect, says that the RINOs who blame the Tea Party for the Republicans’ failure to hold a Senate majority are delusional. In fact, the Tea Party did wonderful things for Republicans.
Charles C. W. Cooke, who is rapidly becoming one of my favorite writers, chimes in with a Tea Party defense too.
If you want a nice, tidy run-down of the Obamacare exchange’s disastrous debut, John Fund has got it for you.
Roger Simon thinks that Obamacare will defund itself very quickly as healthy young people refuse to buy insurance. That brings up two points. The first, of course, is whether Republicans have a plan so that Dems don’t use the system’s inevitable collapse as a gateway to socialized medicine. The second is whether Obamacare changed the law requiring emergency rooms to treat all-comers? I don’t believe it did. As the numbers of uninsured grows, rather than decreases, under Obamacare, what’s going to happen to hospitals?
Victor Davis Hanson sees a lot of economic problems on the horizon for the Democrats. Of course, to the extent that these are problems for America, too, let’s hope that the Republicans have a plan. My unhappy feeling is that, as long as the John McCain caucus remains, the only plan the GOP has is to get rid of Ted Cruz.
The AP isn’t feeling the love for Obama the way it used to. Perhaps that’s because Obama spied on it. In any event, one AP reporter is complaining that the White House is stonewalling about Obamacare enrollment numbers. Hmmm. I wonder why?
How bad are the Obamacare exchanges? So bad that the Consumer Reports advice column is downright nasty and ultimately tells people to stay away from the exchanges.
The Obama administration brings Chicago-style shakedowns to Wall Street. The implications are definitely worrisome, but I’d feel more sorry for Wall Street if it hadn’t eagerly gotten into bed with Obama once he became president. Lie down with political dogs and it’s not that you get up with fleas, it’s that they savage you and leave your gnawed carcass in the gutter.
Do you have anything to add?
An anonymous Obama administration insider explained why the President and the Senate are refusing to compromise, even to the point of refusing to accept piecemeal funding for expenditures everyone supports:
Said a senior administration official: “We are winning…It doesn’t really matter to us” how long the shutdown lasts “because what matters is the end result.”
Allahpundit thinks that the administration official is correct: the public blames the Republicans, and that won’t change. While it wasn’t a smart thing to say out loud, it’s true and saying it won’t change that truth:
That the White House feels this way is a “secret” the way Israel’s nukes are a “secret.” The reality is clear to everyone, but no good can come from formal acknowledgment.
The corollary to that, of course, is that the more the public suffers from the government being closed, the more the White House “wins.” That’s the essence of shutdown theater. Crazy theory: Maybe the reason the White House isn’t factoring public hardship into its strategic thinking is because, for all its blather, it doesn’t believe that there is much hardship. Furloughed workers will get back pay; people who can’t visit national parks are inconvenienced, but not so much so that Democrats will give up their opportunity to “win” politically because of it. And what about the cases of real, life-or-death hardship that need to be addressed urgently? You already got your answer on that.
Troy Senik has a more sanguine view, which is that this is the kind of statement the administration is desperately wishing it could walk back. It speaks to the sociopathy within the White House, where politics is the only game, and the well-being of both America and Americanis irrelevant:
Whatever the case, this Administration has a gift for handing the press the worst possible characterization of their actions. Remember, it was an unattributed source who gave us “leading from behind” as the rallying cry for Libya. Ditto the recent declaration that the Administration’s response to Syria would be “just muscular enough to not get mocked.” (Step 1: Set bar incredibly low, Step 2: trip over it). Now, in today’s Wall Street Journal, yet another verbal kamikaze is in the cockpit:
Said a senior administration official: “We are winning…It doesn’t really matter to us” how long the shutdown lasts “because what matters is the end result.”
If you characterize the shutdown as a disaster in the making and then publicly declare that you’re willing to ride it out as long as necessary to maximize your political advantage, there’s only two possible interpretations: (1) you were lying about the severity of the situation in the first place or (2) you’re happy to let the country suffer as long as it allows you to put points on the board.
John Boehner gave one of the hardest-hitting, angriest press conferences I’ve ever seen him give. I thought it was quite good, and wish he could get roused to that kind of passion more often.
You know, when we have a crisis like we’re in the middle of this week, the American people expect their leaders to sat down and try to resolve their differences. I was at the White House the other night and listened to the president some twenty times explain to me why he wasn’t going to negotiate. I sat there and listened to the majority leader in the United States Senate describe to me that he’s not gonna talk until we “surrender.” And then this morning, I get the Wall Street Journal out, and it says “Well, we don’t go how long this thing lasts because we’re winning .
This isn’t some damn game! The American people don’t want their government shutdown and neither do I. All we’re asking for is to sit down and have a discussion and to bring fairness, reopen the government, and to bring fairness to the American people under Obamacare. It’s as simple as that but, it all has to begin with a simple discussion (Emphasis in original.)
What do you think? Is it all over except for the victory shouting on the Obama side? Or is the administration displaying some serious hubris here.
Before you answer, a little data about the Gingrich-led shutdown, which is what’s guiding the Democrat strategy this time around:
But what really happened in 1995? A Gallup set of surveys illuminates:
1. President Clinton’s popularity rating went down by 10%, from 52% before the shutdown to 42% after.
2. Gingrich’s approval went up slightly. You have to read Gallup’s fine print in the survey to actually figure this out.
3. Congressional approval went up from 30% to 35%. The Congress was Republican. Realize that today’s approval numbers are around 10%.
President Clinton did go on to win re-election in 1996, with the help of Ross Perot, though he did not get a majority of the votes. Furthermore, Clinton won by signaling his compliance with the Republican Congress’s demands for fiscal limits — in fact, in January of 1996, Clinton famously declared in his State of the Union message that “the era of big government is over.” He was met by thunderous applause and sustained interruption in a Republican chamber that viewed the moment as a political signal of defeat for Democrats.
Unlike past shutdowns, which were indeed quibbles about this or that, the current shutdown is a big deal. The question posed is a fundamental one about the very nature of this nation: Is the federal government the servant or the master of the American people. Our Constitution says the former; sixty-years of federal expansion says the latter.
The WWII Memorial showdown in Washington makes concrete this abstract battle. It forces us to ask whether a government separate from and dominant over citizens owns that open air memorial, or whether a government of the people, by the people, and for the people has gotten too big for its britches and needs to be knocked down a peg.
There can be no doubt that what the House is doing is constitutional. Having said that, they are doing a terrible job of selling it, and that’s separate from the fact that the drive-by media is doing its best to tar and feather them. It’s a reminder of something I’ve learned in the 12 years since I crossed the Rubicon and changed political affiliations: Republicans are the party of smart ideologies and poor strategies. Democrats/Progressives, while their ideas may be disastrous, as is proven by every time and place in which they been put into effect, are master strategists. (And in that regard, Saul Alinsky is definitely their Sun Tzu.)
This problem is, in part, built into the system. To the extent there are still conservatives in the Republican party, their individualism makes them as easy to herd as angry cats. Democrats, on the other hand, find meaning in collective action. Even when their ideas are bad, their monolithic front gives them power.
UPDATE: James Taranto notes that, in this go-round, the usually tactically disciplined Democrat party has been unusually maladroit. Hubris or something else?
UPDATE 2: David Stockman sees also sees what’s happening as a determinative moment, but for different reasons.
It’s all good, guys. I’ve finally figured out what’s been going on. We’ve just been reading history dead wrong. The operating historic premise is that the KKK and the Democrat party parted ways during the Civil Rights movement. When the KKK guys realized that northern Democrats who supported civil rights now owned the Democrat party, they walked out en masse and became Republicans. That way, they were free to indulge openly in their hateful racism.
What really happened is something much more subtle. The KKK guys became sleepers in the Democrat party. Instead of attacking blacks head on with burning crosses and lynchings, they decided to use a mainstream political party as the engine by which they destroyed blacks. As Petruchio did in The Taming of the Shrew, they set out to kill the blacks with kindness. The degradation of American blacks under fifty years of ostensibly well-meaning Democrat social and economic policies isn’t a bug, it’s a feature.
(Bear with me here, ’cause I’m on a roll.)
Despite the horrors of the Jim Crow South, not to mention the pervasive racism across America, blacks in America were actually showing steady, albeit slow, upward mobility. When the government left them alone, blacks started colleges, grew businesses, got married, and had families. Although they were poorer than whites, had more out-of-wedlock children than whites, and had more run-ins with the law than whites, they were moving towards a middle class model. Undoubtedly, this trend could have continued and even accelerated with the passage of civil rights laws that banned discrimination. (And it’s worth remember that the Civil Rights Act didn’t require affirmative federal action; it only banned discrimination.)
Whenever they were left alone, blacks in America proved that Frederick Douglas was right all along when he insisted that the best thing that America could do for blacks would be to leave them alone.
Here’s the interesting thing, though. The moment that the Civil Rights movement seemed to have defeated Jim Crow, the Democrat party swung into action — and refused to leave blacks alone. It gave them affirmative action, which meant that, for fifty years, blacks have been placed in jobs and schools where they cannot perform at the same level as other people (both whites and minorities) who achieved those positions on merit. This gave blacks an inferiority complex, and created in non-blacks the false belief that blacks cannot achieve without a sizable handicap.
The Democrat party also did everything it could to ensure that blacks got government handouts, whether or not they wanted them. Instead of being free people, blacks became junkies dependent on ostensibly “free” money. It sapped initiative and pride.
Worse, welfare made men unnecessary. Black women got a better deal from Uncle Sam, especially if they had lots of children. Black men were reduced to the status of sperm donors. (For many women, men who don’t bring in money are burdensome creatures who leave dirty laundry on the floor and forget to put down the toilet seat.)
With the new welfare status quo, sex for black men was easy, but their entire sense of their manhood was reduced to a biological level dependent on a single organ in their bodies. They were no longer judged by their accomplishments, their earning ability, their status as community role models, or as helpmates and companion. Black men were denied the opportunity to develop honor, loyalty, and morality. Instead, instead, in the hierarchical world of men (and all men are, to a greater or lesser extent, hierarchical in how they view the world), the only measurements by which to judge black men was to look for the biggest gun, whether the man carried it gun in a holster or tuck it into his Calvin Klein whitey-tighties.
So we have a generation of black men who have been cheated of an education and a well-fitting job, whose children and family no longer need them as support, and whose lives revolve around their firing power. It was inevitable that these socially and economically disenfranchised — men disenfranchised by a Democrat-enacted policy — would create a culture centered on themselves and their instant gratification. The engines for achieving these ends have been alcohol, sex, drugs, and violence. These are manly pursuits untempered by the steadying influence of women and children or by a culture that values men.
And what did the Democrats do when black men, as a result of Democrat policies, devolved into a lowest-common denominator culture? They “forgave” them. Instead of exhorting them to rise up, to embrace morality, decency, family, stability, work, accomplishments, and education, the Democrats assured the black men that what they were doing was okay. “Oh, black men,” said the Democrats, “you are not masters of your destiny and captains of your fate. You are the helpless flotsam and jetsam floating about aimlessly on the great ocean of Republican racism. You can’t do anything about your lives and therefore you are not responsible for the harm you do, whether to yourselves, your families, your children, your community, or your country.”
It is a terrible thing that Democrats have done to blacks — and all ostensibly in the name of love.
And that’s when I realized what’s really been going on for all these decades: the Democrats have achieved what the KKK set out to do. Just like Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, they have succeeded in killing American blacks by kindness:
That is, to watch her, as we watch these kitesThat bate and beat and will not be obedient.She ate no meat today, nor none shall eat.Last night she slept not, nor tonight she shall not.As with the meat, some undeservèd faultI’ll find about the making of the bed,And here I’ll fling the pillow, there the bolster,This way the coverlet, another way the sheets.Ay, and amid this hurly I intendThat all is done in reverend care of her.And, in conclusion, she shall watch all night,And if she chance to nod I’ll rail and brawl,And with the clamor keep her still awake.This is a way to kill a wife with kindness,And thus I’ll curb her mad and headstrong humor.He that knows better how to tame a shrew,Now let him speak; ’tis charity to show.
Darryl Issa has tweeted out one of the most appalling photographs I’ve ever seen emerge from the United States House of Representatives.
Today the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing about events in Benghazi on September 11, 2012. You remember what happened on that day, don’t you? If you don’t, I’m happy to give you the official Obama administration version:
That was the day that a Libyan movie review got a little bit out of control. Apparently Libyan fighters coincidentally affiliated with Al Qaeda took umbrage at a poorly made seven minute YouTube trailer promoting a movie that was never actually made about Muhammad’s life. Since Libya has no popcorn to throw at the screen, these same outraged movie critics inadvertently managed to overwhelm our under-guarded diplomatic mission in Benghazi, killing Ambassador Christopher Stevens (and perhaps torturing him before doing so), as well as U.S. Foreign Service Information Management Officer Sean Smith.
The same crazed movie reviewers then shifted their attack to the nearby CIA Annex where they engaged in a several-hour-long firefight with former Navy SEALS Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty. Both men died at their stations.
Meanwhile, back at home, some unknown person, but definitely not Barack Obama (even though he had sole authority to do so), told nearby troops told to stand by. Also, after a single phone call early in the attack, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was sufficiently well informed about everything to vanish from the scene entirely. (And really, what difference at that point, did it make?) As for Barack Obama, well, he really did need his beauty sleep before an upcoming Las Vegas campaign stop.
The administration later assured us that, despite a slew of increasingly desperate emails from Ambassador Stevens about security concerns, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had absolutely no idea whatsoever that an American embassy outpost in a war-torn land riddled with al Qaeda operatives might need more than a couple of local guards at the front door. That’s why the Marines weren’t there to fire any of those “shots across the bow” that Obama suddenly loves so much.
In sum, the incompetence of a Democrat administration left a U.S. outpost vulnerable to a terrorist attack; that same Democrat administration could not be bothered to rouse itself to protect Americans fighting for their lives in a tiny outpost of America on foreign soil; and the Democrat administration then tried to cover-up its gross dereliction of duty by lying consistently in the days and weeks following the attack. Other than that, of course, the Democrats have nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to events in Benghazi.
The Democrats’ sordid Benghazi history may explain a shocking tweet that Rep. Darryl Issa sent out two hours ago right before Patricia Smith, who is Sean Smith’s mother, and Charles Woods, who is Tyrone Woods’ father, were to have testified about their sons’ lives and deaths:
— Darrell Issa (@DarrellIssa) September 19, 2013
The far side of the room, shown empty in the photo, belongs to the Democrats. The only Democrats who stayed were Ranking Member Elijah Cummings and Rep. Jackie Speier.
Absent further information about this mass retreat, it appears that the Democrats, having presided over these men’s deaths, do not have the decency to look their survivors in the face, if only to apologize.
(Cross-posted at Gateway Pundit, where I’m helping out as Jim Hoft recovers from a very scary month, health-wise.)
Conservatives attack a Democrat’s political ideas. Democrats, and their media lap-dogs, attack Conservatives. The attacks on Ted Cruz are, as could be anticipated, despicable.
It’s entirely possible that Ted Cruz might not be presidential material. That rests on whether people like what he stands for and whether they’re willing to give another neophyte a try. (Clearly, they weren’t sufficiently burned by Obama’s amateur first term because, assuming solely for the sake of argument that the IRS-capades and the other scandals didn’t throw the election, they elected him for a second.) For the Democrats and their media shills to destroy him based on a paisley bathrobe is the outside of enough.
I liked Elbert Guillory from the first time he crossed my radar, when he was still a Democrat. I continue to like him, as you can see in his video introducing the Free at Last PAC, aimed at introducing blacks to conservative principles.
He’s remarkably good at explaining free market principles and explaining why they should matter to American blacks. I also love the way he attacks Republicans for allowing themselves to be cowed by Democrats, especially when it comes to blacks.
Please consider contributing to the PAC.
I mentioned that the only news I get here comes from the New York Times digest that’s handed out to interested passengers. I don’t have a copy at hand, but if my memory serves me, this is what I read:
1. House Republicans are standing firm against the President’s effort to spend his way out of the endless recession. The NYT thinks this is a bad thing. I think it’s great except that Senate Democrats will not agree to any of these cuts. Stalemate awaits us at summer’s end. The media will ensure that the public blames the Republicans for trying to stop a spendthrift president from bankrupting America.
2. Al Qaeda is resurgent in Iraq, the country that Obama abandoned after our troops spilled their blood there to achieve victory. Obama purports to love Lincoln so much, but I believe that Lincoln would have taken one look at Obama and understood immediately that Obama is the type of leader who snatches defeat from the jaws of victory. What Lincoln would not have understood is that this doesn’t come about because of incompetence. Instead, defeat is Obama’s ultimate goal.
3. The Democrats’ best minds are trying to overcome the fact that America’s young people, many of whom are under employed or unemployed have no intention of finding ObamaCare by buying overpriced health insurance that they don’t think they need (especially because a large percentage of them get to extend their adolescence through to 26, before they’re kicked off of Mom’s and Dad’s policies. Without them, of course, ObamaCare is a shell.
Incidentally, the NYT frames the problem as a risk to Obama’s “legacy” (the NYT’s word, not mine). Whether this situation creates a risk to America itself doesn’t seem to matter to the hyper-partisan Times.
4. Recent revelations about Anthony Weiner’s latest round of sexcapades have made him so toxic that even the NYT has been forced to disown him as a viable mayoral candidate. Weiner’s current stance is that he will not retire from the contest. I’m left wondering if this creates an opening for the Republican mayoral candidate in New York. Heh.
5. This isn’t about the NYT, but it occurred to me that, if Obama wants to emulate Norway’s virtually free health care and its absolutely free higher education, he should follow the Norwegian example and “drill, baby, drill.” Americans might be more amenable to the Norway’s “socialism” if we too were floating away on seas of black gold.
Reading the paper left me feeling that Democrats are not having a good time of it right now. I’d like to gloat, but because Democrats hold two of three levers of power (White House and Senate), with a Supreme Court resting in Roberts’ damaged hands and Kennedy’s unprincipled ones, the current situation means that, whether Democrats win or lose for the next couple of years, our nation still suffers.
Sigh. . . .
I’ve already admitted to my crush on Elbert Guillory, a crush that formed when he was still a Democrat, although he must already have been planning to leave that party. My political crush has just deepened into a full-blown, out-and-out case of political passion. If you haven’t yet watched this short video Guillory made to explain why he switched parties, you must. I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say it’s one of the most important videos I’ve ever seen. The only thing that saddens me about it is that it won’t be run on MSNBC, or ABC, or CBS, or NBC, or NPR, or on any other major media outlet. I think everyone should see this video, no matter their race, creed, country of national origin, or gender identity. It’s that good:
I don’t know about you, but I’m still cheering.
Gandhi is revered because his policy of peaceful resistance brought down the British Empire’s century’s old rule over India. It’s true. It did. But what few are willing to acknowledge is that this tactic worked only because he was using it against a moral nation, one that had been financially and emotionally depleted by two world wars in quick succession and that was increasingly removed ideologically from the concept of Empire. Had he been dealing with an aggressive, hungry imperial nation — England in the 18th century, Stalin, Hitler, etc. — the outcome would have been very different.
My point is that we achieve our victories, not just because of our own efforts, but because of our opponents’ make-up. And this is where AIPAC comes it, for it has suddenly discovered that it has no say in Washington. As Lee Smith pointed out, AIPAC hasn’t gotten much done lately:
This weekend, more than 10,000 pro-Israel activists, Jews and non-Jews alike, will gather at the Washington convention center for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference. These friends and supporters of the U.S.-Israel bilateral relationship will hear from members of Congress and the executive branch who will all testify to the singular influence that AIPAC, as the pillar of the pro-Israel community, wields in the capital of the free world.
But just how powerful is AIPAC if a man who refers to it as the “Jewish lobby” and has defiantly claimed that he is not an “Israeli senator” is slated to be our next secretary of Defense? And, most significantly, how much influence does the lobbying organization actually exercise if it can’t carry the day on the single issue that’s been at the very top of its agenda for over a decade: stopping Iran from getting nuclear weapons.
Despite an operating budget of more than $60 million, on the most crucial issue facing Israel’s security, AIPAC has lost the policy debate. The winners include those who believe you can’t stop a nation from getting the bomb if it’s determined to do so, those who think the Iranians have a right to nuclear weapons, and those who argue the Iranians can be contained—among them, our new Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.
(Read the rest here.)
Smith blames AIPAC’s deafening silence regarding both the Hagel and the Brennan nominations. He considers this a tactical failure. I believe, though, that AIPAC’s inability to have a say in the debate about Hagel goes beyond tactics and represents a much deeper problem for Israel and her friends in America.
Up until 2008, AIPAC was accustomed to dealing with a very specific government model: bipartisan support for Israel. AIPAC never took sides in a debate because its sole role was to be a non-partisan voice for Israel. Whether it was dealing with Democrats or Republicans, it simply had to offer these politicians information about Israel.
AIPAC assiduously avoided partisan or controversial stands because its moral weight rested upon the fact that it was not a party organ but, instead, was always a conduit for information and good-will to flow between Israel and Congress as a whole. In other words, AIPAC could be Gandhi, because it was dealing with an “opponent” (if you consider the government as a whole as being in a slightly adversarial stance to lobbyists) that wasn’t actively hostile. Indeed, it was often quite friendly to and supportive of AIPAC’s goals.
Things are very different in Washington now, and AIPAC hasn’t caught up to that fact. The party that holds power in Washington is openly anti-Israel and increasingly antisemitic. This puts AIPAC in a bind. It’s one thing, after all, to advocate for Israel. It’s another thing to take a stand against the Democrat President’s cabinet choices — something that smacks of the partisanship AIPAC has always avoided.
Until AIPAC acknowledges that the old world is gone and that it’s dealing with a very different one (Dems will continue to be anti-Israel long after Obama has left the building), her voice will remain muted and ineffectual. What Hagel mistook for a nefarious “Jewish lobby” was, in fact, an organization that worked with politicians who already supported Israel, either for moral reasons or for Cold War reasons.
AIPAC didn’t control those politicians. It was their servant, not their master, since it enabled the politicians to carry out their own goals. With the Cold War over and the morality leeched out of public life, Washington, D.C., no longer has any use for AIPAC and the so-called “Israel lobby” is being kicked to the curb.
For reasons I’ll explain shortly, I was kvelling to a friend about how wonderful Marin County is. I then wrapped up by saying the Marin is an outlier, unlike the rest of America. The moment the words were out of my mouth, it occurred to me that I’m probably wrong. While Marin is an outlier economically, being one of the richest counties in America, the values I’m about to describe are American and it’s the large urban areas, the ones that fill the headlines, that are American outliers.
To begin at the beginning….
My son had a school project that required him to ask people to fill out a little survey. Having exhausted the neighborhood without receiving a sufficient number of responses (most people are out of town for ski week, which is a wealthy community’s luxury vacation), he got permission at the local mall to set up a table.
I can only say that people were lovely. Those that couldn’t, or didn’t want to, participate, were polite. And those who did participate were delightful. One parent, having taken the survey, returned home and immediately came back with seven children (her own and friends’ children) to help out. I knew several of the people who came by, as well as some of the children whom I’d watched grow up over the years. My overall sense was of a happy, healthy, highly functional little community.
Based upon my perception that I live in a very good community, I later remarked to my friend that we are lucky to live in Marin. I added that it would have been impossible to complete this project in “other communities.” My examples of “other communities” were Oakland and San Francisco — both highly urbanized areas. My friend, however, who lives in one of Oregon’s bigger cities, remarked that, as long as you didn’t wander into one of the yuckier neighborhoods in her city, you could have done the same project in there too.
It was her remark that got me thinking about a little-mentioned American ethos — friendliness. Or perhaps you could call it generosity of spirit.
As you all have gathered, I’ve traveled fairly extensively throughout Western Europe, parts of Central Europe, the Mediterranean, and some parts of Latin America. I’ve sampled the Far East (my Japan trip) and spent meaningful amounts of time in Israel. In every place in which I’ve traveled, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting nice people. (Okay, not in Tunisia, but that was a few months into the Arab Spring, and the Tunisians were clearly a people on edge.)
Despite invariably having met pleasant individuals, I’ve never been a county, other than my own, that offers friendliness as a national hallmark. In my travels abroad, I’m pleasantly surprised when I meet nice, friendly people. At home, I’m equally surprised when I’m met with unfriendliness.
Part of this, of course, is the urban versus suburban or rural divide. As a tourist, one tends to go to the capital cities (London, Rome, New York, Prague, etc.) and the nature of cities is that they are less friendly than smaller communities. That is, unless you go to cities such as Dallas, Houston, or other Southern cities that still take pride in their manners.
Even cities that suck up a lot of headline space with violence horror stories tend to confine that icky behavior to specific neighborhoods. I know that Chicago is right up there amongst America’s murder capitals, but when I was in downtown Chicago on a business trip a few years ago, people couldn’t have been nicer. The same holds true for other major American cities, provided that one is able to overlook regional eccentricities. For example, people in Boston were rigid, but friendly; people in New York, rude but friendly; and people in L.A. peculiar, but friendly.
We Americans are fully aware of how nice we are. Or, rather, we’re aware that, barring certain urban environments (which are usually subsets of a larger, nicer urban area), we are nice, helpful, friendly people. That’s why mass murders in suburbs upset us so much. It’s not, as the race-mongers would have us believe, that we only care when white kids die. It’s that we’re terribly aware that urban toxins are polluting our communities. These toxins may not be factory smoke or ground-water pollution, but they are every bit as vile and dangerous.
So is Marin County an outlier because it’s nice? No. It’s an outlier because it’s affluent, but it’s niceness is quintessentially American. That’s something worth remembering when we see headlines about shootings in Vegas or Chicago or Detroit. Although those cities are strongly identified with America, they are behavioral outliers. We’re nice more often than not. (And no, I haven’t found a study to prove this. I’m just basing it on having traveled extensively at home and abroad.)
Oh, one more thing. You know those recently listed, incredibly miserable American cities? Here’s a little chart identify something they all have in common:
You don’t need to be a statistical genius to realize that there’s a strong correlation between Democrat politics (and many of these cities have been Democrat strongholds for decades) and unhappiness. I’m not going to make the effort now, but I’m willing to bet that one could find an equally strong correlation between crime-ridden, or unfriendly, cities and Democrat politics.
Honestly, you’d think that Republicans would figure out a campaign along the lines of “You’ve been miserable Democrats for decades. Try being a happy Republican.”
All the talk lately is about talking. Tune in to any conservative outlet, and you’ll see that the politicians and thinkers are scratching their heads, trying to figure out how to get voters to support conservative values. Conservatives are talking about their lack of a clear narrative. Conservatives have an ideology, and a good one at that, but ideologies don’t sell. It’s the stories about those ideologies that sell. It sometimes seems that conservatives are so hamstrung by the fact that the plural of anecdote isn’t data, that they too often stop making any effort at all to use anecdotal stories to sell their ideas.
This past weekend, National Review hosted an emergency summit devoted to conservative messaging:
Nearly every speaker advised that [conservatives] “make the case” for conservatism, that their leaders find a better way of communicating the superiority of limited government and traditional social values. The country is prepared to hear it, they said, it’s only a matter of explaining it–an admittedly difficult task when the latest national election proved that more people are interested in a message of government-provided security and spoils.
After attending a part of this summit, James Taranto noted that Democrats went through this same soul-searching after the 2010 election. The president, they said, needed to send out a better message. The greatest orator since . . . well, ever, was falling down on the job and failing to communicate. They did win in 2012, but was it the message, or something else?
Obama won re-election, but would anyone really describe the 2012 Obama campaign as a clinic in exegetical politics? Did Obama lay out a compelling case for his principles? Far from it. In fact, his clearest ideological statement was “You didn’t build that.” His supporters spent weeks insisting he didn’t say that.
What Obama did do successfully was vilify his opponent (“not one of us“) and make narrow, often fear-based appeals to particular interest groups. His campaign also demonstrated a mastery of technology for identifying voters and coaxing them to the polls.
Taranto suggests that conservatives stop agonizing about “messaging” and start focusing on winning. This is one of those rare occasions where I part ways with Taranto’s conclusion. I agree with him that Obama won, not because he sold voters on his vision, but because he was able to turn Republicans into heartless, greedy, misogynistic monsters. The thing is that this vilification was the message — it just wasn’t a positive message about Obama. Instead, it was a negative message about Romney and the Republicans. In other words, Dems did a great job messaging. Conservatives simply missed it, because they were looking for soaring rhetoric, while Progressives were actually serving up trash talk.
The reason the Democrat’s trash talk message worked so well is because it fell on fertile soil. The Left knew that it couldn’t sell Obama — his record did not speak for itself — but Leftist strategizers also knew that for decades the Left had created an intellectual atmosphere in which it was easy for people to believe, all evidence to the contrary, that Romney was an evil, soulless man, and that a Republican America would be, as Ted Kennedy so memorably said about Robert Bork,
a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored at the whim of the Government, and the doors of the Federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of citizens for whom the judiciary is—and is often the only—protector of the individual rights that are the heart of our democracy….
That none of this came to pass during any Republican ascendency is irrelevant. Kennedy’s message has stuck for two generations, forever tarring Republicans with the “evil” brush. The cultural bias the Democrats have created against conservativism reached its tipping point in November 2012 when a president with a disastrous economic record rather handily got reelected. Relying on decades of indoctrination and sophisticated modern social networking, Democrats spread a message that stuck: Republicans are evil. Everything else, whether from the Left or the Right, was just chatter that people ignored.
It’s the tipping point that matters. Malcolm Gladwell wrote The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference back in 2002, long before social networking websites had appeared on the scene. In a way, though, our modern age’s manic social networking makes Gladwell’s points even more relevant than they were ten years ago.
Gladwell’s thesis is a simple one: Ideas are like viruses. Most of them float around, affecting a pocket of people here, or a pocket of people there. Given specific circumstances, though, the virus reaches a tipping point and suddenly explodes out of the pockets, and becomes dominant.
After looking at studies that explain the explosive spread of certain ideas (including product popularity) Gladwell came up with a list of three must-have factors that will cause an idea to go viral. The first is what he calls “the Law of the Few,” the second is “the Stickiness Factor,” and the third is “the Power of Context.” The factors are surprisingly uncomplicated.
The Law of the Few says that studies show that there are specific people in society who are information, idea, and style vectors. Whether they have a vast network of contacts, a reputation for sharing useful wisdom, or the innate gift of salesmanship, these few people exercise a disproportionate effect when it comes to dispersing ideas. When they talk, other people — lots of other people — listen.
Do we have anybody like that articulating conservative ideas? I’m not so sure. Gladwell’s point is that these people spread their ideas because of their ability to connect directly with other people. All of our conservative talking heads are just that — talking heads on TV or the radio. Conservatives, perhaps true to their commitment to individualism, do not have networks of people on the ground (i) who are themselves networkers, (ii) who are viewed as reliable information sources, or (iii) who can sell anything to anybody.
In a way, the internet has made things even worse for conservatives. While it’s increased information dissemination, it’s also increased information ghettoization. We don’t talk to our neighbors about politics anymore. Instead, we go to a like-minded blog and enjoy the feeling that we’re not alone. But by doing so, we delude ourselves into believing that there are more like-minded people out there than a walk in the community and a talk in the park would reveal. Facebook is more of a marketplace of ideas than the blogosphere, and I can tell you that my liberal friends used it aggressively for political networking, while my conservative friends did not — it part, because conservatives didn’t have any “sticky” messages to disseminate.
The Stickiness Factor? That’s what it sounds like: it’s a message that doesn’t just amuse or intrigue people for a mere minute. Instead, it sticks with them and, even more importantly, makes them act. During the Bush years, the Dems came up with a great one: No War for Oil. The fact that this slogan had little relationship to the facts, or that a ginormous number of people stuck it on the back of their gas-guzzling SUVs was irrelevant. Those four words convinced too many Americans that the Republicans were fighting wars on behalf of Standard Oil.
In 2012, the Democrats announced that Republicans were “waging a war on women.” Again, data was irrelevant. It sounded good, especially when Democrats Alinsky-ized Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock.
The Progressive penchant for ignoring facts undoubtedly makes it easier for them to come up with the pithy slogans and posters that sweep through Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and email chains before ending up on tens of thousands of bumper stickers that subliminally drill into every driver’s head. People could laugh when reading “Somewhere in Texas, a village is missing its idiot,” never mind that George Bush was a highly educated, accomplished man with an academic record better than or equal to his opponents’.
Conservatives used to have pithy sayings (“Live free or die,” “I regret that I have but one life to give for my country,” “That government is best that governs least”), but we don’t seem to have come up with any clever ones lately. As you may recall, during John McCain’s failed candidacy, his slogan — “Country First” — managed to leave supporters cold, while allowing opponents to mumble about racism. I doubt that we’ll ever get another “I like Ike,” but we can certainly do better than Romney’s “Believe in America,” which sounds more like the beginning of a fairy tale than it does a rousing call to the ballot box.
And finally, there’s the Power of Context, which at its simplest level means that a message has to capture the zeitgeist. People have to be primed and ready to receive the message. In 2012, Americans, fed on decades of anti-capitalist education and entertainment, were more than ready to believe that Romney was a dog-abusing, woman-hating, religious nut who wanted to enslave poor people and blacks. Thirty years ago, people would have laughed at this message. Last year, there were too many people who thought it made a good deal of sense.
Democrats are masters of leveraging context or, as Rahm Emanuel said, “never letting a crises go to waste.” Just as the Pentagon has shelves full of war scenarios that they’re ready to break out should one geographic region or another blow up, it’s quite obvious that the Progressives also have shelves full of battle plans. Economic crisis? Let’s nationalize! Crazy person goes on a murderous rampage with a gun? Let’s jettison the Second Amendment. Woman in Mississippi isn’t near an abortion clinic, so she decides to give herself a do-it-yourself abortion? Malign pro-Lifers as murderers. Islamic terrorism against Americans? Blame Americans or video-makers. There’s a playbook.
On the other side of the aisle, have you ever seen conservatives do anything but be caught flat-footed when a crisis arises? Conservatives instantly go into ad hoc mode. There’s a virtue to having sufficient flexibility to deal with an actual, as opposed to theoretical situation, but the person without a plan always looks unprepared and, therefore, helpless.
It’s not enough for conservatives to talk about talking, or to send each other messages about messaging. If they want to be the zeitgeist’s master not its slave:
- They must come up with a message that matches the mood of the time, whether it’s pro-conservative or anti-Progressive;
- They must shape the message so that it gets stuck in people’s minds and drives them to action; and
- They must make a deliberative effort to get the message to conservative networkers (i.e., information purveyors, and salesmen), rather than hoping that the message will magically disseminate itself.
We have a good message — we just have to sell it.
And in that vein, here’s an idea from Mike Devx, one that would work marvelously well on Facebook. It would appeal to people on both sides of the aisle, and it would give a campaign advantage to Republicans if they would loudly embrace it:
I’ve wondered at times why laws aren’t required to have a “sunset provision,” meaning every law would expire at a certain time after passage. The law would have to be re-passed by whatever legislature passed it in the first place, or else it goes on the dustbin of history. Perhaps the default should be twenty years to the date after passage. But you could specify a non-default expiration that would be allowed to be LESS (not more than the default).
Same thing perhaps for regulations. It might keep the tsunami of laws and regulations under control. And the bad ones or the controversial ones would be guaranteed to be re-fought. Or the laws whose time may have come and gone — such as affirmative action to redress a wrong — would get re-fought and resisted because we have done enough.
UPDATE: If you like the idea of a Sunset Amendment, I’ve developed it at greater length here.
After a lovely long weekend with family, we’re getting in the car today and heading home. If things go well, the drive should take about seven hours. If we get stuck in holiday traffic (as happened when we drove down), we’re looking at nine hours on the road.
I might be able to blog tonight, but there’s no possibility of doing so today. Consider this, then, your Sunday open thread.
Since my links are getting wiped out when I post on iPad, I can’t link to Michael Barone’s contention that ObamaCare, which goes fully into effect in January, will be the undoing of the Democrat party. The 50-employee cutoff for businesses (if you have 50 or more full-time employees you must provide comprehensive insurance of a type mandated by Congress) will lead to firings and to the transformation of full-time into part-time jobs.
Barone thinks the massive job loss will trigger a Republican wave vote in 2014. I say that’s true only if Americans who have been indoctrinated by 40 years of statist education and entertainment, have sufficient residual intelligence to be smarter than the French. The French, as you recall, faced economic disaster by going full socialist.
Paul Scott challenged us to look at what Eric Garland, a Progressive blogger, has to say and to take it seriously as a way to win the White House. Paul is right — we cannot make a convincing argument unless we know what our opponent in the argument believes. Insulting Paul doesn’t make us stronger. Rather than spin around in our own fish bowl, we have to look at what others are saying, correct their misconceptions, and either challenge or concede to their arguments head-on.
In that spirit, I’m taking a serious look at Eric Garland’s post. I’m not giving anything away here when I say that, having weighed it carefully, I’ve found it wanting.
Eric might also want to look seriously at conservatives, since he seems to be have accepted several canards propounded by the media and other liberal sources. In that regard, I would remind him that the Wheel of Political Fortune has tended to rotate in roughly eight year cycles: Reagan’s conservativism got 12 years (counting Bush); Clinton’s Progressivism got 8 years; Bush’s compassionate conservativism got 8 years; and Obama is now getting his 8 years.
Whether Obama will also get his own addendum years, as Reagan did with Bush Sr., remains open to question. Americans are a generous and forbearing people, but unless Obama significantly improves the economy, or significantly re-educates Americans so that they lower their economic and employment expectations, Obama’s next four years may be the Democrats’ last four for a while.
Let’s start with Eric’s contention that he is the kind of voter that Republicans seek:
- My family lineage goes back to the MAYFLOWER, BOAT ONE!!! (Garland family of New England-> John Adams -> Howard Alden -> Plymouth colony ->KINGS OF MUTHAF***IN’ ENGLAND)
- I am a heterosexual, married to the super Caucasian mother of my two beautiful children who are, inexplicably, EVEN WHITER THAN I AM.
- I am college educated (Master’s degree!) and affluent.
- I am a job creator and small businessman.
- We pay a lot of taxes! Every year!
- I grew up in a rural area and despise laziness!
- Having started my own business, I have complained at length about the insanity of federal, state and local bureaucracy – and its deleterious impact on the innovative small businessman.
- I currently live in the suburbs in a historically Red state.
I’m not sure Eric is the perfect specimen he thinks he is. Or rather, he’s the perfect specimen only if you accept his rather ugly view of conservatives.
Family lineage: As a first generation Jewish American conservative, I was unaware that the Republican party had admissions criteria based upon 1950s WASP country club rules. To the contrary, the Republican party, unlike the Democratic party, does not classify people by race, religion, or country of national origin. Instead, it seeks values voters. As I use it, and as the the conservatives I know use it, the term “values voters” should be understood to encompass constitutional values such as individual liberty; market-based capitalism; small, affordable government; freedom of speech; freedom of worship; etc. In other words, the oldies, but goodies. These are values intrinsic too all Americans regardless of the divisive victim identities that the Democrats and Progressives have sought to impose on the American body politic since the 1960s. We understand that people like Eric can’t help their boring lineage. They are still welcome amongst conservatives.
Sexual orientation and race: By boasting repeatedly about his, and his family’s, whiteness and heterosexuality, Eric sounds a little too much like a candidate for the KKK (which was, as his high education level surely informs him, a Democrat connected party). Eric’s obsession with his race and sexuality highlights the Democrat/Progressive habit of parsing Americans into sexual and racial boxes. Honestly, we conservatives really don’t care about those archaic, eugenicist classifications. What we do care about are shared values, tied to the Constitution. I know bunches of gays, whites, Jews, Asians, Blacks, and Hispanics (and whatever other little boxes Progressives like to check) who believe in limited government.
What all conservatives have figured out is that, once government gets big enough (and ours certainly has gotten that big), it can start picking winners and losers. That’s good for the winners. Unfortunately, as Jews, Gypsies, Gays, Communists, and the mentally disabled discovered in Nazi Germany; as Kulaks discovered in Soviet Russia; and intellectuals and glasses-wearers discovered in Pol Pot’s Cambodia, if a Big Government identifies you as a loser, you’re pretty much dead. The smaller the government, the less risk for minority groups. Ideally, as the Founders perfectly understood, one wants a government that’s big enough to protect all of its citizens, but not one so big that it does what Eric does: parses them into “in” groups and “out” groups, and then punish the “out” groups.
College educated and affluent: It’s great that Eric and his family are college educated and affluent. I’m sure his mother is very proud. It may come as a surprise to Eric that many conservatives are educated too. And almost as many conservatives have spent many years trying to unlearn the Left wing pap that made up that education.
The real world doesn’t put the same premium on the Ivory Tower that the Ivory Tower puts upon itself. Womyn’s Studies contribute little to intellectual attainment or economic betterment. And if you’ve got an MBA predicated on Keynesian economics — well, you’re about to see that economic view take a hit in the real world, just as it did when Roosevelt put it into effect (with the Depression massively worsened under his aegis), or when Europe put it into effect with its now-collapsing soft-socialism, and as America will see play out as the Harvard-educated Obama continues to pick winners and losers in today’s economy.
The secret that hasn’t yet infiltrated the Ivory Tower is that governments are slow, inefficient, and corrupt. They analyze data inefficiently, apply their analyses unfairly, and then pervert the market (using taxpayer money) to prop up their so-called “winner’s” failures. Today’s education, which is directed at creating a Leftist man, rather than a broadly educated man, is nothing to boast about.
A job creator and small businessman. Again, that’s great. Conservatives believe that job creators and small business people should support conservative values, because lower taxes, fewer regulations, and less government control (not no government control, but less) enhance small businesses and create more jobs. We find bewildering the number of small business owners who willingly vote for politicians who impose ever greater burdens upon them, stifling their building to thrive and grow.
Pays lots of taxes: Eric sounds almost enthusiastic about those taxes. One wonders if he’s ever asked himself if the government makes better decisions about spending that money than he does? I’m sure Eric doesn’t quarrel — and neither do I — with government spending it on core government functions that all civilized nations support, such as national security, roads, public health, etc. I wonder, though, if he’s thought seriously about the economics and morals of taking stimulus dollars and deciding which businesses, interests, and individuals should get special treatment using American tax dollars. Likewise, I wonder if he’s ever considered the wisdom of tethering people more and more tightly to welfare by taking dollars out of the market and then having the government channel those same dollars to people rendered unemployed by the deleterious effect high taxes have on jobs.
Rural and not-lazy. Again, good for Eric. Republicans like rural, not-lazy people. Republicans also like suburban or urban not-lazy people. Basically, Republicans like people who are willing to put some energy into living their own lives, rather than sitting back complacently, waiting for a hand-out.
Complained about bureaucracy: It’s rather peculiar that Eric hates bureaucracy, but still supports Obama and his Democrats. This headline explains my bewilderment: “Obama Administration Proposes 6,125 Regulations And Notifications In Last 90 Days.” Why would someone who dislikes the burdens of a large bureaucracy vote for the candidate whose promise is to increase government interference in and control of every aspect of our lives?
Red Stater: I bet Eric likes living in a Red State. His taxes aren’t as high as they could be (try living in Blue California), and he’s not dealing with the failed economies that plague the Blue States (have I mentioned California?). In other words, Eric is living well thanks to Red State, conservative values voters, who have supported lower taxes and more individual freedom. It’s ironic and sad that his current goal is to reduce the entire United States to a wacky economic combination of Detroit (bankrupt), California (bankrupt), Illinois (bankrupt and corrupt), and other blue stated wonders, filled with “smart” people and big debt. It’s not just the states that are bankrupt. Bankrupt states produce bankrupt individuals.
(Thinking about this makes me kind of sad that I didn’t pursue my original law school goal of becoming a bankruptcy attorney. It seemed like such a great idea during the recession that existed when I was started law school. As the Reagan economy improved, through, I rethought things, and went for general business litigation. Now would be a good time to be a bankruptcy attorney. Take a firm like Wadhwani & Shanfeld, for example, which clearly started as a two attorney enterprise, and now has five offices scattered throughout meatless-Monday Southern California. That’s the great thing about America — there’s always a silver lining for someone. Also, I like that firm because it’s quite clear that the founders are from different cultural/racial backgrounds, but they came together to create a successful all-American enterprise. Woo-hoo!)
But back to my main point….
Per Eric’s definition, the modern Republican party would desperately like to look like the old Democrat KKK, which utterly fails to explain why it celebrates extraordinary people and politicians such as Mia Love, Marco Rubio, Allen West, Herman Cain, Bobby Jindal, and other Americans who are concerned more with values than with little boxes on government survey forms.
Eric reveals his blinkered view of conservativism when he claims he is a prize of the type conservatives seek. It’s nice that he pays taxes, creates jobs, is educated, works hard, and lives in a Red State, but he’s flattering himself a little too much. It isn’t what he is taxes and education that matter, when it comes to elections, it’s what he believes — and honestly, his beliefs aren’t so hot. What Eric believes leads down a single road: higher taxes; fewer jobs; continued Leftist educational indoctrination; higher welfare and food stamp rolls; a population made up of disparate groups all vying to be crowned “biggest victim”; and Red States joining their Blue compatriots in bankruptcy and corruption.
Perhaps if Eric could see beyond his Jon Stewart, New York Times, MSNBC definition of conservatives, he might realize that the conservative ideology offers him and others a great deal more than he ever imagined, without interfering too greatly with what I assume are his core values. Let’s take his critiques of conservatives one at a time:
Science - One of the reasons my family is affluent is that my wife and I have a collective fifteen years of university education between us. I have a Masters degree in Science and Technology Policy, and my wife is a physician who holds degrees in medicine as well as cell and molecular biology. We are really quite unimpressed with Congressional representatives such as Todd Akin and Paul Broun who actually serve on the House science committee and who believe, respectively, that rape does not cause pregnancy and that evolution and astrophysics are lies straight from Satan’s butt cheeks. These are, sadly, only two of innumerable assaults that the Republican Party has made against hard science – with nothing to say of logic in general. Please understand the unbearable tension this might create between us and your candidates.
As far as I can tell, in the last election, it is a sad truth that the Republican party managed to field a few idiots, such as Todd Akin, Tom Smith, and Roger Rivard, who are genuinely ignorant, in a very mean-spirited way, about rape. Otherwise, though, Republicans are like other Americans, in that they understand that horrors of rape and the morally difficult consequences that result from rape.
Thus, conservatives recognize that rape is a terrible thing, one that becomes a permanent, damaging part of a woman’s psyche. What some pro-Life conservatives say, though, is that this purely an evil act may nevertheless have resulted in something good: an innocent life. To them, it would compound the evil of rape if it was followed by the murder of an innocent. They are not unsympathetic to the rape victim, they just believe that, in the balance, two wrongs don’t make a right.
I’m not agreeing or disagreeing with them, because the topic deserves a post on its own. I’m simply saying that candidates such as Paul Ryan, Richard Mourdock, Joe Walsh, and John Koster have set out a moral position that has nothing to do with science. In the same way, there’s nothing science-related about Barack Obama’s repeated willingness to oppose a bill that would have required physicians to care for late-term babies that, rather than being aborted as planned, end up living.
The question of an innocent life within a full-realizedwomen is one of morals, not science, and it’s a profound cognitive error to conflate the two. Also, I can’t resist adding that, when it comes to idiots, the Democrats have managed to field quite a few of their own cranks, crackpots, gaffe-meisters, and other mean-spirited, ignorant people. The difference between Democrats and Republicans is that, while the Republican idiots didn’t get elected to office, the Democrat idiots did.
Climate - Within just the past 18 months the following events have come to our attention: a record-breaking drought that sent temperatures over 100 degrees for weeks, killing half the corn in the Midwest and half the TREES on our suburban property – AND – a hurricane that drowned not New Orleans or Tampa or North Carolina but my native state of VERMONT. As an encore, a second hurricane drowned lower Manhattan, New Jersey and Long Island. The shouted views of decrepit mental fossil Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma that this is a fraud perpetrated on the American people by evil, conspiring climate scientists is belied by such events and is looking irresponsible to even the most skeptical.
I’m always amazed at the way supposedly educated people confuse correlation and causation. The one does not imply the other. That is, just because we’re seeing impressive climate events at the same time that most Americans drive cars doesn’t mean the two are related.
Most conservatives willingly acknowledge climate change. Indeed, they’ll go further than just focusing on the changes that took place since Al Gore, in the early 1970s, was convinced that the earth would soon freeze over. They’ll concede that the earth’s climate has been changing non-step since the earth first came into being.
Where conservatives differ with the self-identified scientifically brilliant climate change crowd is in believing (a) that human activity can change climate and (b) that warming is a bad thing. (The picture below is of Greenland, which was once Green and sustained significant Viking colonies.)
With regard to human activity, conservatives admit that humans can affect the environment, most notably with pollution. Most conservatives believe that they are the earth’s stewards and that this stewardship requires acting responsibly so that we do not make filthy the world around us, or carelessly destroy nature’s bounty. We do not believe, though, that the climate change crowd has adduced sufficient evidence to show that today’s bad weather is human-kind’s fault. News about Climategate, or the profound errors regarding Himalayan glaciers, indicates that we are right to be suspicious. (Regarding glaciers, for example, we know that they’ve advanced and retreated relentlessly for most of the earth’s lifespan.)
And with regard to the apocalyptic view of warming, those of us reasonably conversant with history know that a global warming trend is good for humans. It increases the growing season, releases more water (which is essential to all human existence), and makes available more land on which to grow food. For example, the periods both before and after the mini-Ice Age were good ones for human development.
A few more things to throw into the mix: We know that it’s only since Victorian times that people have been keeping accurate weather records, which means that we’re basing a lot of conclusions on only 150 years of data. We know that the computer models on which much climate hysteria is based have frequently proven wrong. And we know that many of the problems we’ve seen from hurricanes have happened, not because hurricane are worse (and after all, our records are only 150-200 years old), but because we have very dense coastal populations. It’s like the difference between a fatal car crash involving one passenger and a crash involving seven: it’s the same crash, but the mortality rate in the second instance is seven times greater.
Healthcare - My wife and I are quite familiar with America’s healthcare system due to our professions, and having lived abroad extensively, also very aware of comparable systems. Your party’s insistence on declaring the private U.S. healthcare system “the best in the world” fails nearly every factual measure available to any curious mind. We watch our country piss away 60% more expenditures than the next most expensive system (Switzerland) for health outcomes that rival former Soviet bloc nations. On a personal scale, my wife watches poor WORKING people show up in emergency rooms with fourth-stage cancer because they were unable to afford primary care visits. I have watched countless small businesses unable to attract talented workers because of the outrageous and climbing cost of private insurance. And I watch European and Asian businesses outpace American companies because they can attract that talent without asking people to risk bankruptcy and death. That you think this state of affairs is somehow preferable to “Obamacare,” which you compared ludicrously to Trotskyite Russian communism, is a sign of deficient minds unfit to guide health policy in America.
Eric’s analysis about the US healthcare system works only because he is relying on the WHO metric –that is, he’s looking at access, not quality. I’m not going to beat this horse here, because I don’t have to. Scott Atlas’ masterful The Worst Study Ever explains the difference between socialized and American medicine, as well as the flaws in the WHO study. More than that, he does so concisely and in terms even the well-educated can understand.
There’s no doubt that the pre-ObamaCare American system was inefficient and needed improvement. Turning it into England’s National Health Service, however, which serves the young and healthy sort of well, but is bad news for others, is not the way to reform American medical care.
War - Nations do have to go to war sometimes, but that Iraq thing was pretty bad, to put it mildly. Somebody should have been, I dunno – FIRED for bad performance. Aren’t you the party of good corporate managers or something? This topic could get 10,000 words on its own. Let’s just leave it at: You guys suck at running wars.
Eric might want to explain what happened in Libya, which was Obama’s war: Why did we go in, how much did we spend, and what did we get for the money, aside from some murdered Americans, including the first U.S. Ambassador killed since 1979? Eric might also want to look into the skyrocketing deaths on Obama’s watch in Afghanistan — deaths that are wasted, because we already know that they will be followed, not by victory, but by retreat. Lastly, Eric might want to contemplate that, since 1900, most of the wars in which America got involved started on a Democrat’s watch: WWI (Wilson), WWII (Roosevelt), the Korean War (Truman), the Vietnam War (Kennedy and Johnson), and the war in Libya (Obama). Perhaps having a stronger hand at the helm might have avoided those wars in the first place.
Deficits and debt - Whenever the GOP is out of power, it immediately appeals to the imagination of voters who remember the Lyndon Baines Johnson (!) administration and claim that the Republican alternative is the party of “cutting spending” and “reducing the deficit.” The only problem with your claim is that Republican governments throughout my entire 38 year life (Reagan, Bush 41, Bush 43) have failed to cut spending and deficit and debt EVEN ONCE. I hope you understand that your credibility suffers every time you promise one thing for three decades and do the EXACT OPPOSITE. Egads – if you actually were the party of fiscal responsibility – you might win our votes despite your 13th century view of science!
I’ve got to agree with Eric — the Republicans have been stinky at fiscal responsibility. Really stinky. The only ones who have been worse are the Democrats. James Taranto nailed it in his column explaining that, right up until the Tea Party got serious about the deficit, the only thing that the Republicans did was to temper Democrat spending:
Deficit hawkishness was the main strain of postwar Republican conservatism until the Goldwater movement of 1964. When lefties long for the “mainstream” Republicans of yore, this is a large part of what they have in mind. A conservatism that cares only about balancing the books not only fails to challenge the encroachment of the welfare state but actively aids it by taking political pressure off the left.
Here’s how politics would work in a world in which deficit hawks dominated the Republican Party: The Democrats would propose a new entitlement. Some Republicans would oppose it, but once it was clear it was going to pass, they would drop their opposition and push for tax increases instead.
It’s a win-win for the Democratic left. They not only fulfill their ideological goal of ever-expanding government, but they get the political credit for doling out benefits and they shift the blame to Republicans (or at least share it with them) for the concomitant tax increases. Conservatives are reduced, to paraphrase Newt Gingrich, to acting as tax collectors for the welfare state. With Republican cooperation, Democrats can be the party of generous benefits and low taxes. Lyndon B. Johnson dramatically expanded the former while reducing the latter.
The current strain of conservativism, birthed by the Tea Party, is small government conservativism. The Big Tent has room for social conservatives, but the real press here is what got Reagan into office on his second run for the presidency: shrinking the federal government. As Taranto explains in the article quoted above, talking about shrinking government is easier than actually shrinking government, but the focus is still on restraining growth, not just on figuring out a way to pay for it.
Eric’s attitude — which is that Republicans are wastrels, so I’ll vote for the party that’s even more irresponsible with taxpayer money — is a classic example of cutting of ones nose to spite ones face. Eric should be demanding more small government conservativism, not retaliating against Republican profligacy by opening his checkbook even wider for infinitely worse Democrat profligacy.
The bottom line in the rational world, and one that Eric, as an educated man and businessman, should know well is simple: over the long term, you cannot spend what you don’t have. When your spending outruns your earning by too great an amount, you have very limited choices: continue to spend yourself into bankruptcy, which is the Obama choice; cut your spending, which is the Tea Party choice; and earn more money, which is what Obama contends is his choice, one made by using the government’s taxation powers. Where Obama errs is that it is impossible to close the gap by taxing the rich. Instead, by killing the goose that lays the golden egg, Obama’s approach will merely accelerate the bankruptcy.
Gay marriage - As the child of Baby Boomers who got divorced (as was the fashion!) in the 80s and 90s, and for whom 50% of my friends had their homes broken by divorce in the critical years before age 18, I sure am unsympathetic to your caterwauling bullshit that “gays will destroy the sanctity of marriage.” Perhaps if everyone in your generation didn’t take the period of 1978 – 1995 to start surreptitiously banging their neighbors and coworkers, only to abandon their kids because “they just weren’t happy,” I would take your defense of marriage more seriously. The institution of Middle Class suburban marriage was broken by the generation of aging white Baby Boomers who populate what is left of the Republican Party, so your defense is wrongheaded and disingenuous. And moreover, as someone who got called “faggot” about 127 times a day from the years 1985 through 1991 – guess what – I grew up to be pretty good friends with actual homosexuals, whose sexual orientation is usually the least significant thing about them. The Republican perseveration on homosexuals as any sort of threat consigns them to history’s trough of intellectual pig dung.
Eric errs (again!) in assuming that, because conservatives haven’t embraced gay marriage, they hate gays. Not so. As with abortion, this is a complicated issue that sees a clash of differing liberties. As I’ve written often, “marriage” has two distinct components: religious and civil. When church and state were one, that wasn’t a problem; when they parted ways, with the Constitution guaranteeing that the government would stay out of the religion business, the potential for conflicts arose. As we’ve seen with the ObamaCare contraception/insurance mandate, when the government issue edicts that conflict with doctrine, the Constitution is directly implicated. So too with “gay marriage.” It’s extremely easy to posit a situation in which a church refuses to marry a gay couple, which then sues the church, claiming that it violated their civil rights.
My suggestion, and I think it’s a good one, is for the government to get out of the marriage business and into the civil union business. It is then free to define civil unions however it wishes: male/female, female/female, male/male, goat/cow, etc. The state’s concern would be “What’s good for the state?” Considerations would be population replacement or control, economics, stability, etc. This would leave marriage as a purely religious union.
Frankly, if there wasn’t such a mad rush towards gay marriage, people would be able to step back for a moment and contemplate what their goals are and what the potential pitfalls are. I don’t have a problem with ensuring that committed gay couples obtain the same civil benefits (and burdens) as other committed couples. I do have a problem with a pell-mell rush into changing an ancient institution in such a way that it creates a certain clash with faiths, in such as way as to lead to a serious Constitutional crisis. Am I anti-gay? No. I am pro-civil rights, pro-religion, and pro-Constitution. But in all the rush, nobody is listening to people like me.
Meanness- Your party is really mean, mocking and demonizing everyone who does not follow you into the pits of hell. You constantly imply – as Mitt Romney did in his “47% speech” – that anybody who disagrees with you does so not by logic or moral conviction, but because they are shiftless, lazy parasites who want “free stuff” from “traditional Americans.” Wow, you guys managed to follow up a stunning electoral defeat with insulting the very people you wish to attract for a majority in the political system! Brilliant! You are losing elections because being angry and defensive and just-plain-mean is more important than being smart and winning elections – and thus you deserve everything happening to you.
First all all, mean is not an argument; it’s simply an ad hominem insult, and deserves little consideration. In the spirit of finger pointing, here are few examples of mean from the other side of the aisle. I’m too lazy to find links, but anyone wishing to do so can easily find examples: Conservatives are lambasted as Nazis, racists, homophobes and misogynists. It’s mean to call them those names. Israel, the only true liberal democracy in the autocratic, totalitarian, antisemitic, anti-Christian, homophobic Middle East, is routinely castigated as a Nazi, apartheid state that deserves to be destroyed. That’s mean too. During the Bush presidency, Democrats characterized Bush as a Nazi, as Hitler, as a chimpanzee, as a murder, and as an idiot. That’s not very nice. Barack Obama spent his entire 2012 political campaign ginning up class resentment against rich people or, as I like to call them, employers. That’s not nice. Obama’s Occupy movement raped women, attacked people, defecated all over the place, brought barrels of human waste into buildings, rioted, destroyed public property, and harassed people in their own homes. That’s mean too.
I hope that I have established to Eric’s, and everyone else’s, satisfaction, that calling people names is (a) a game that both sides can play and (b) completely pointless in terms of moving the ball from one side of the debate to the other.
Oh, and by the way, it’s really nasty to call your opponents in the argument “A-holes.”
If you want to know exactly where you failed in 2012, and will continue to fail, here it is. Look you assholes, I’m as traditional an American as it gets, and I do not “want free stuff.” I am a taxpayer, and ALWAYS HAVE BEEN. I got my first job – dragging bags of cow manure, horse feed and fertilizer around a farm store – when I was 12. I started my first company when I was 28. I have followed the vast majority of the rules set out for middle class white males (for good and for ill.) And if it weren’t bad enough that your policy positions are a complete clusterfuck for the reasons I lay out in great detail, you manage to follow up the whole exercise with insulting me, my wife, and my friends of every stripe who didn’t vote for your political party – all of whom are hard-working, taxpaying, job creating, law abiding, great AMERICANS of EVERY COLOR AND CREED.
In my experience, people revert to obscenities and crude insults only when they’re boors or when they have no ideas — or both. Eric has a few good points (Republicans need to spend less), but mostly, he wallows in myths, canards, and insults. In that last paragraph quoted, when he drops the pretense of facts and objectivity (all of which are easy to counter), he reveals his true self: he is not a serious or a decent person. He is, instead, a bully.
Having escaped my bubble and carefully examined Eric’s arguments, I understand both where he’s coming from and where he is going — and I can’t say I like either his point of origin (an ideological location I once shared) or his ultimate destination. Eric argues from ignorance and heads to obsolescence. Let us hope that, in the coming years, his world view does not prevail.
My Facebook friends are besides themselves with delight about Obama’s victory. I get that. What I don’t appreciate is the “kick ‘em while they’re down” attitude that these enlightened people show. Herewith, the latest offerings from the sore winners on Facebook.
Progressives conflate truly stupid statements about human biology (that would be Todd Akin) and rape (Roger Rivard), with defensible, humane positions about the sanctity of life. That is, you don’t have to agree with Mourdock, Walsh, or Ryan, but you should recognize that they’ve taken a morally defensible position. I look forward to the day when reporters ask Progressive political candidates “Do you believe in third trimester abortion?” or “What would you do with an aborted baby that is born alive?”
And this one? Well, it’s just vulgar and offensive — a classic example of an ungracious winner:
I’ve got a new post up at PJ Media:
In the last few days before the election, many moderate Democrats are contemplating breaking up with Barack Obama. Parting with a political party or candidate can be every bit as wrenching as severing a personal relationship with a girlfriend or boyfriend. The problem whenever one walks away from a serious breakup is that doubts keep creeping in: “Am I doing the right thing?” “Will there be someone else for me?” “Was there something wrong with me that I was attracted to such a manipulative, unkind person?” “Will I be ridiculed for being blind to his/her faults?”
Republican political groups (the Romney campaign, the RNC, PACs) have recognized that there are a lot of voters out there who need permission to change their minds about Obama. The Independent Women’s Voice has recently released several videos that recognize that political relationships are just as real and deep as romantic relationships. These videos address people’s struggle to balance a sense of loyalty with a belief that their survival depends on leaving a damaging relationship:
Because this election is going to depend on people breaking away from their toxic relationship with Obama and the Democrat party, we should acknowledge their emotional pain and extend a helping hand. This doesn’t just mean helping them decide to break-up, it also means validating their feelings and inspiring them after the breakup.
We need to remind them that they’re stronger and better for having abandoned a damaging relationship. It’s not their fault that they were charmed by a shiny smile and a glib line. We’ve all been there, but the smart ones walk away, having learned from the experience. Here, then, are the top seven “I am so done with you” breakup anthems.
You can read the whole thing here.
I’ve now had the chance to digest myriad analyses of the Roberts decision on ObamaCare. I think I can sum up the various conclusions that liberal and conservative pundits have reached. Here goes:
The decision is a victory for Obama and the Democrats because it keeps ObamaCare on the books. However, it’s a victory for Mitt Romney and the GOP because it reminds Americans that Democrats like to tax them. The only problem with the latter view is that Americans aren’t paying attention to things like ObamaCare and taxes and these credulous citizens will just role with whichever side looks victorious, which is either the Democrats and the Republicans.
The only exception to the rule that Obama’s role with the winner is the Tea Party, which is likely to be galvanized into action. Naturally, though, the Tea Partiers are too demoralized to do anything constructive, other than riot in the streets. We know from past Tera Party events that the smiling grannies togged-out in matching red, white, and blue outfits are especially dangerous.
ObamaCare will never be repealed because the Republicans cannot get a majority in 2012, let alone win the White House. This is a “true fact” as long as you take into consideration that Mitt Romney will almost certainly win the 2012 election on an anti-tax platform and that the House will stay Republican. The Senate, of course, can go either way, with Republicans getting either 51 seats (enough to reverse a tax) or 60 seats (enough to prevent President Obama, who will definitely win in 2012, from vetoing a repeal.
If the Republicans take over both Congress and the White House, which won’t happen, they can fully repeal ObamaCare, which won’t happen. However, if they only keep the House, they can refuse to fund ObamaCare, which is great, because it leaves it useless, except for all of the mandates that continue to exist.
Over the long haul, of course, Americans are more free because the decision restricts the Commerce Clause. This, however, ignores the fact that they’re less free, because they can be taxed for anything, including breathing or, as the case may be, not breathing.
John Roberts is someone who is suffering from a seizure disorder and is probably being blackmailed. Neither of these factors really matters, though, because the Chief Justice is clearly a Machiavellian bridge, chess, or poker player who is taking the long view and setting the Republicans up to win in 2012 on the issue of higher taxes. Or he’s taking some sort of really long view that enables Obama to do a victory dance in November 2012 because his signature legislation survived. In a second Obama term, with a Democrat House and Senate, people will really learn to hate those tax-and-spend Democrats. Those few remaining Americans who have not been sent to re-education camps or have not been disenfranchised by a vote transferring all citizenship rights from native-born Americans to illegal aliens, will have the opportunity in 2016 to make all 48,739 of their voices heard.
In the end, insane, brilliant, diseased, medicated, blackmailed, weak-spined, far-sighted, Machivellian Chief Justice John Roberts simultaneously built up and tore down American liberties. Moreover, he also ensured that both Obama and the Democrats, on the one hand, and Romney and the Republicans, on the other hand, can claim a clear victory, both today and in the November 2012 elections.
I hope everyone understood this lesson. There will be a test tomorrow.
The Twentieth Century American paradigm for patriotism was our Flag, Mom, and Apple Pie. Obama’s Democrats have now hit the trifecta.
We’ve got the flag:
We’ve got Mom:
And we’ve got pie, courtesy of Michelle Obama, speaking on April 8, 2008:
The truth is most Americans don’t want much. Folks don’t want the whole pie. Most Americans feel blessed to thrive a little bit….but that’s out of reach for them. The truth is, in order to get things like universal healthcare and a revamped education system then someone is going to have to give up a piece of their pie so that someone else can have more.
(Thanks to JKB for this wonderful observation about the explicit values of Obama’s Democrats.)
I’m feeling nostalgic, and not in a good way. First, a little pointed humor from the 40s:
(Hat tip: Patriot Post)
Bob Hope reminds us that the OWSers are nothing new:
And should we be bothered that tuberculosis, the scourge of the 19th century, has emerged in a non-treatable form? Yes, I know it’s currently in the back of beyond, but that’s where all scourges begin. The problem is that that’s not where they end.
I get Obama campaign emails because I signed up for them. It’s always interesting to see what the opposition is doing. That’s why I got to enjoy this “classy” email from Obama’s 2012 campaign:
Everyone’s got that special conservative in their life.
Maybe it’s your dad, who forwards you every chain email about the President’s birth certificate, or your neighbor, who just put up a Mitt Romney sign.
Dealing with these folks can be … frustrating.
This holiday season, we’re giving you a chance to have a little bit of fun at their expense. Let a Republican in your life know they inspired you to make a donation to the Obama campaign — chip in $3 or more today.
When you give to the campaign, simply enter your Republican friend’s email address and they’ll get a note letting them know that they motivated you to donate — which will surely make their day.
Not only that, but when you donate today, you’ll be entered to win a chance to have dinner with the President and First Lady. Just picture how good it’ll feel to let your honoree know about those dinner plans.
The other side is busy scrambling for the Iowa caucuses and a long string of primaries, trying to find a nominee. Meanwhile, we’ve got our candidate — and we’re already doing the work to get ready for November.
Give your conservative friends the gift of knowing they’ve inspired you to donate. After all, actions speak louder than words.
Please donate $3 or more today:
Deputy Campaign Manager
Obama for America
P.S. — Really want to fire up your GOP friends? Buy them a gift from the 2012 store. I recommend the birther mugs — they get the message across pretty well.
I happen to think this is a great idea. Not, of course, the part about donating money to the Obama campaign, but the part about Republicans ending up on the Obama email list. Why? Because emails such as this one give us a great insight into the mind of the liberal, and it’s not a pretty picture: Obama’s campaign is smug, vindictive, sarcastic, immature and condescending. In other words, it’s Obama himself writ large.