Archive for the ‘Media’ Category

Mr. L Cuts Through the Nonsense on Islamic Supremacists

Friday, September 14th, 2012

Telling You What the Media Won't

Take a little time and listen to Mr. L’s Tavern from Thursday, the 13th of September.  His commentary is on the money.  It’s disgusting that our lame-stream media won’t offer honest appraisals like this, but it’s the reason they’re slowly losing the last of their readers and viewers. Mr. L takes on the coddling of Islamic supremacists, as performed [again] by Barack Obama and his foreign policy.  It’s a disaster for this country, and whether you believe he is simply naive, or you believe that Barack Obama is actively engaged in undermining this nation, it’s impossible to dismiss what Mr. L explains in this installment of his show:

 

Be sure to check out Mr. L’s Tavern for more great commentaries!

Convention Fight Update: It Isn’t Over

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Ladies and gentlemen, the GOP establishment is trying to pull a fast one, and they’re using media to confound and confuse the issue. Given my stance on the state of the Republican Party, you might wonder why I care what they’re doing in Tampa.  Let me make this as clear as I am able, because you, who work precincts, and who carry the water for the Republican Party at the grass-roots level deserve and need to know the truth:  They think you are suckers.  I am not trying to make you any angrier than you may already be with the GOP establishment, but I want you to understand the chronology of what has been done. Let’s cover it briefly:

Friday, the 24th of August, Ben Ginsberg, acting on behalf of the Romney campaign gets rules placed that would severely limit the influence of the state parties in selecting delegates, or having much say-so at all in future elections.  This rule 15(and now 16) would have made it nigh on impossible for you in the grass-roots of the party to have your rightful influence on the national convention.

Over the weekend, Morton Blackwell sent out a response to this, outlining the problems.  This was a rather complete appraisal of the probable impact of such rules.  Blackwell is a hero in my estimation, sounding an alarm that began to gather steam by Sunday, and was trumpeted by no less than Mark Levin and Sarah Palin on Monday evening.

The GOP establishment never runs out of tricks to play against us, even as they frequently seem confounded by the Democrats.  On Monday evening, they pushed out a story via the Houston Chronicle that proclaimed the matter resolved, and that any crisis and floor fight had been averted.  Worst of all, it was false, because it ignored and omitted the matter of Rule 12, that will permit the party bosses to shove Rule changes down our throats by a 3/4 vote.  That sounds okay, right?  The problem is that it’s really not as great a defense as some have been led to believe.

This phony “compromise” prompted this morning’s letter from Mr. Blackwell, who explains the truth of the matter.  Wrote Blackwell:

“Proponents of the “compromise” ignore the enormously destructive problem of the proposed Rule 12.  Rule 12 would enable 75% of the Republican National Committee later to eliminate their “compromise” and to destroy or make drastic changes in dozens of other rules which have served our party well over the years.

“In practice, Rule 12 would enable an RNC chairman to enact almost any rules change he or she desired, because an RNC chairman already has so much power and influence that he or she can almost always can get 75% or more of the RNC members to vote for or against anything.  A chairman already has the enormous “power of the purse,” and should not have also the power to change party rules at will.

“There is already quite enough power flow from the top down in our party.  Instead of approving more power grabs, we should be looking for ways for more power to flow from the bottom up.  That’s how to attract more participants into our party.

“The media’s picked up on this series of last-minute manipulations by D.C insiders and consultants, and I’m sure you’ve been bombarded with contacts from both sides.

“The truth is, this isn’t a compromise.  It’s far from it.”(emphasis added)

Complicating this matter has been the fact that many people ran with the “compromise” business without fully grasping what had been omitted from the Chronicle’s story of Monday evening.  Mark Levin posted on Facebook that the problem had been resolved, but the truth is that it hasn’t.  He likely read the Chronicle story or other stories derived from it, and concluded the crisis had been resolved.  He is to be forgiven this error, because this whole thing is being done precisely to create confusion about the state of the fight.   As those of us who followed the matter into the wee hours of the morning know, this was never the case, and as Mr. Blackwell makes plain in his latest note, the matter is far from resolved even at this hour.

Ladies and gentlemen, make of it what you will, but the facts are plain: The GOP establishment is out to rule the party from the top, and despite pretending otherwise, Mitt Romney’s campaign has had a strong hand in this.  Worse, the deceptive notion that Ron Paul supporters are behind this kerfuffle is designed to get you to shrug and walk away without a fight.  I don’t doubt but that there are a number of Paul supporters involved, but there are many who simply wish to safeguard the future of the party, and that’s where you should come in, if you still care about the future of the party.

This isn’t over. It’s not over until the rules are adopted, and I urge all conservatives to get in touch with their states’ delegations and put an end to this madness.  This is YOUR PARTY!

As Erick Erickson reports on RedState, this isn’t over.  Time to let them hear you, conservatives!

Michelle Malkin has a complete list of State Party contact numbers, as well as this list in PDF form.

Hating “Extremism”

Friday, August 24th, 2012

When Extremism Is No Vice...

One of the terms that has gained favor in popular culture, particularly on the left, but increasingly in the broader political arena in America is the word “extremist.” I find this word to be a shallow, empty word, used as a bludgeon, but carrying no factual, logical impact while delivering an entirely emotionalized blow.  I’ve been called an “extremist” depending on the issue at hand, and after a while, the term loses its meaning precisely because “extremist” merely refers to a person who had been “extreme” in some facet of their actions, character, or pronouncements.  In this context, the word “extremist” tells us precisely nothing about the matter at hand, but since it’s an ugly-sounding word, it is used by leftists for its emotional impact rather than as the basis for any rational discussion.  When I see the term “extreme” or “extremist” hurled around in this fashion, it has generally been a leftist hurling it, but increasingly, I have seen conservatives begin to wield this same weapon, and what this signifies is how intellectually slothful some on the conservative side of the aisle have become in making an argument, or at the very least how thoroughly they disrespect the intellect of their audiences.  When some commentator, pundit, or writer uses the term “extremist” or “extremism,” whether from right or left, we ought to demand a fuller explanation than that which had been provided by such an empty taunt.

Rather than pulling out Merriam Webster’s dictionary in demonstration of the misuse of the term, I’d prefer that we restrain ourselves to contextual examples. Knowing that I’ve been labeled an “extremist” myself on a few occasions, it might be instructive to view the context in which such a charge has been leveled.  After all, in our culture, the term “extremist” has such negative connotations that one is immediately painted with an easel of colors that suggests a wild-eyed maniac, lurching zealously in pursuit of some particular end.  Of course, therein arises the problem, because the term tells us little or nothing about the nature of the “extremism.”  Instead, due to the negative connotations associated with this word, the presumptive impact delivered is negative, and yet there is nothing inherent in the meaning of the word to suggest a deleterious implication.

For instance, I have been told I am an “extremist” because I refuse to abandon the logically consistent position that life begins at conception, and that if men are endowed by the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God with certain unalienable rights, they must begin to arise at that moment, such that any excuse for ending that life must still ignore the rights of that individual, no matter how new and as yet, undeveloped it may be.  The assertion leveled in my direction is that by remaining inflexible to any other contextual concerns, I have become an “extremist.”  The only thing truly “extreme” about my position is that I refuse to concede the argument on the basis of situational ethics, or relativism.  My support of a right to life for all human beings is therefore branded as “extreme,” and the connotation attending that label is foisted upon me in the same manner that Timothy McVeigh was called an “extremist” without reference to what it had been about which he was extreme, or to what extremes he was willing to go in furtherance of his twisted world-view.  That’s the object being pursued in many instances in which the word “extreme” is so frequently misused: The desire to paint one’s political opponents as being raving lunatics.

I have been called a “Second Amendment Extremist,” because I can read the plain language of that amendment, and because I can see in the construction of the sentence that comprises it everything I need to know about the intentions of its authors.  I note that in that amendment, there is a dependent and independent clause, and that if I identify the two, what is plain is exactly opposite of what leftist, statist legal scholars contend.  They suggest that the right of the people to keep and bear arms is dependent on their proximity to a “well-regulated militia,” but knowing the construction and grammar of the English language, I know they are lying.  The full sentence states:

“A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

There are two clauses in this sentence, and you can decide for yourself which is the dependent and the independent.  One definition of the distinction would lead you to test them each as sentences.  “A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State…”  Complete sentence, or fragment?  Now try the other: “…the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”  Clearly, the second clause is independent, while the first clause is dependent on the latter.  You could, in point of fact, place any clause whatever in place of the first, and not change the meaning or impact of the second.  “Ham and cheese on rye being necessary to the fullness of one’s stomach, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Yes, this seems a preposterous remark, but notice that substituting my dependent clause about ham sandwiches does exactly nothing to the meaning or impact of the independent clause.  What we must therefore learn from this is that the author of this Amendment, and those who subsequently adopted and ratified it intended to say “The right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”  Why put the other clause there? The intention was to demonstrate one cause relative to governance for which the government must sustain that right, but it was not intended to be the exclusive or sole reason for the amendment.  Instead, it was simply to explain one interest the federal government should recognize so that it does not infringe upon that right.

Naturally, the fact that I would rely on the actual words of the amendment, and the rules of English to recognize its essential meaning simply implies (according to leftists) that I am some sort of “extremist.”  Note, however, that I am only an “extremist” about this subject in the eyes of those who at least contemplate depriving the American people of this right. I might just as easily state that those who would consider such a disparagement of our rights as an “extremist,” and I would contend to you that they are, but I will at least offer you the respect of telling you the nature of their “extremism,” rather than relying upon that word to carry the emotional water I wish to convey.

Of course, this can be applied to many things, well away from the realm of politics.  How about human relationships?  I am certain that my wife would prefer that I remain an “extremist” with respect to my observance of my wedding vows.  I am certain that my friends and neighbors would prefer that I remain an “extremist” when it comes to my honesty in my dealings with them.  I am likewise certain that my co-workers would prefer that I maintain my extreme diligence and thoughtfulness with respect to the work I do.  Of course, if you prefer to remain in the political realm, you could take it from Barry Goldwater who famously asserted:

“I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue!” (Sen. Barry Goldwater(R-AZ), 1964 RNC Convention)

Here’s the video, for those who weren’t yet around to witness it:

The Republican Party has been running away from that statement with few exceptions since Senator Goldwater uttered it, and yet it reminds us of a central truth about the nature of our political discourse and the infamy of misusing the language in such a way.  What Goldwater said as he accepted the Republican Party’s nomination for the office of President was a thing we ought to recognize, because at the time, the Johnson Campaign was painting him with the awful and generic brush of “extremism.”  Quite obviously, the most controversial thing about Goldwater’s views at the time lied in the fact that they were perceived as controversial at all. The GOP establishment, even in those days, quickly abandoned Goldwater and left him to fight with an underfunded campaign.

My point in bringing up Goldwater, and the notion of “extremism” as a label of infamy cast about by commentators, reporters, journalists, and even ordinary people like me is that we should question its use, or more properly, its overuse.  I have become accustomed, as have most of you, to being smeared with this label of “extremism” in such repetitive fashion by leftists that is very nearly a badge of honor among actual conservatives.  I am proud to be what the press might call an “extreme conservative,” or what Mitt Romney might call “severely conservative,” or what John Boehner would simply characterize as a “knuckle-dragger.” The term “extremist” conveys no actual meaning of its own, and left in isolation, it’s impossible to judge with certainty whether the “extreme” under discussion is a bad thing or a good thing.  It’s a shoddy method by which to launch an attack with no specificity for its basis, and that should get your attention.

What I am astonished to see in this campaign season is when bloggers,  columnists, commentators, journalists, and writers ostensibly on our side resort to this sort of lazy language to attack not only our opponents, but also some of our own. “Extreme” and its derivatives are words we who cover politics should refrain from using without contextualization and definition.  It’s a dastardly attack because of its presumptively negative connotations, but absent any context, it loses its meaning. I might posit the notion that “Voters don’t like extremists,” but what information have I conveyed if I provide no context or meaning to the term?  What sort of extremists do voters not like?  Is there a sort of extremist they might like?   Having permitted the reader to define the term for his or her self, I haven’t said anything substantial, and in that case, perhaps I’m better off had I instead refrained from saying anything at all.

Krispy Kreme Keynote?

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Embracing Islam...

I find it baffling when some politicians take such pleasure in behaving publicly like thugs, as has Chris Christie. With his bullying demeanor, and his non-stop vitriol, a loudmouth like this might be expected to take a tough stance against actual threats to the nation, but that’s hardly the case.  As obnoxious as he has been at times, I hadn’t known he was such a suck-up for the cause of Islam, but according to an article appearing in FrontPage Magazine, Christie hosted an Iftar dinner at which he has singled out a supporter of Islamic suicide bombers as his friend.  Yes, that’s right, the New Jersey blowhard, known for shouting- down members of the public, virtually groveled at the appearance of Mohammed Qatanani, an Imam well-known in New Jersey who is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and a proven supporter of Hamas.  This is a man who has helped raise money for the families of suicide bombers, and Chris Christie is hanging out with him? As I read this on Monday afternoon, I became perplexed at Governor Christie’s stance, but I was even more baffled as news came out on Monday evening that Christie would be announced on Tuesday as the man to deliver the GOP convention’s keynote address.

How is it possible that the Governor of New Jersey, who throws verbal bombs in every conceivable direction, and who has such ties will give the RNC’s keynote address? Part of the problem we face has been well-covered in such blogs as Pamela Geller’s AtlasShrugs, consisting of an unwillingness on the part of many Republicans to discuss the infiltration of Islamists into American governmental institutions.  Many of them are compromised, having ties to wealthy donors, and when questioned, they inevitably accuse the questioner of carrying out some sort of Salem’s Witch Hunt, or accuse them of “McCarthyism,” never acknowledging the facts of the matter.  Christie is no different on this score, using the occasion of the dinner to again defend Sohail Mohammed, a man he appointed to the Superior Court bench in Passaic County, New Jersey, who had been a defense attorney for Imam Qatanani:

“Ignorance is behind the criticism of Sohail Mohammed,” Christie declared, without bothering to explain how “ignorance” provoked Qatanani’s guilty plea, or involvement in Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, or Mohammed’s other ties to Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas-linked individuals and groups.

When you hear a politician fetch out this kind of language, it is almost invariably because there is something to be hidden.  I am concerned that as bad as Governor Christie’s demeanor has been in many instances, his ties to these sorts of unsavory characters calls into question what sort of man he really is, because there’s nothing in this to exculpate his behavior.  Why is the Governor of New Jersey involved with such things?  Is this a case of pure political back-scratching, and if so, is Christie unaware of the threat?  It would seem unlikely that Christie could have managed to ignore all the information to which he had access on Imam Qatanani, and it’s incomprehensible that he would be unaware of its implications.

I don’t know what Chris Christie will say at the GOP convention as its keynote speaker, but you can bet it won’t be about the threat of Islamic radicals that our nation faces.  I’m tired of politicians on both sides of the aisle who seem inclined to play patty-cakes with people who have a professed interest in undermining our nation.  The piece in FrontPage Magazine merely punctuates this point with respect to Christie, calling into question why he would be chosen as the keynote speaker.  It’s not as though one couldn’t think of better.  Ahem.

 

Michelle Obama’s Nutritional Finger-Waggling

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Setting Her Back?

On Monday night’s renewal of the Jay Leno show, Michelle Obama appeared along with Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas, and as the discussion went on, Douglas mentioned eating a celebratory Egg McMuffin from McDonalds.  Self-appointed National Nutrition Czar Michelle Obama, who enjoys telling everybody on the planet what to eat, chided Douglas over the choice. I realize this was said mainly in jest, but frankly, Michelle Obama needs to shut the hell up.  Gabby Douglas needs Michelle Obama as a nutrition adviser like I need her husband as an automobile consultant.  “No, I don’t want an exploding electric car, Mr. President.” There’s something wrong with the Obamas, and it comes down to their desire to run the lives of others, but more than this, there is something unseemly about a woman who has no accomplishments of note(beyond marrying a guy who was elected President,) counseling or even jokingly chiding an Olympian about her choices of foods.

Really, what the hell has Michelle Obama ever accomplished?  She was an attorney for a while, and she served in some positions in Chicago that appeared to have been little more than political favors to her husband.  Apart from that, and apart from spending millions of taxpayer dollars on her seemingly endless string of vacations, I can’t imagine what has qualified the lady to give any sort of nutritional advice to anyone, never mind an Olympian who has managed to train her whole life long and win Olympic glory all without the help of Michelle Obama.  There were no quotas, no set-asides, and no special favors for Gabby Douglas, her only way forward and up to the top available having been to achieve it by her own efforts.  She didn’t obtain  Olympic fame and fortune by marrying a gymnastics judge.

I have no problem with first spouses who are accomplished in their own right.  I think it’s terrific to see First Ladies becoming involved in various causes, but they shouldn’t have any official power, and in truth, they shouldn’t have any role in governance because we don’t elect them.  Until Hillary Clinton, most first ladies tended to restrain themselves to charitable activities and voluntary efforts, more or less, but something was wrong with Hillary Clinton becoming involved in health-care plans, just as  there’s something wrong with Michelle Obama nattering-on about nutrition.  Hillary Clinton is not a medical professional, an insurance professional, and at the time, she hadn’t been elected to anything.  Similarly, Michelle Obama is not a nutritionist, knows damnably little about food beyond consuming it, but certainly little about its production, and yet here she chastises the Olympian?    Of course, she also toured Army posts earlier this year examining their dining facilities, and what nutrition is available to our soldiers, as if the Army needs her advice or direction.

I’m tired of this nonsense.  I’m tired of her fake wisdom and her husband’s fake Presidency.  For the better part of four years, we have had to listen to these two self-aggrandized nit-wits chiding the nation over this or that, but frankly, it’s time for them to shut the hell up.  At every turn, here they are to remind us of a ruling family in some tin-pot dictatorship, like Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos of the Philippines, and while we can guess than Michelle doesn’t have 2700 pair of shoes, she does seem to have a thing for belts.  I don’t believe the American people hired Barack Obama to provide a nutrition consultant in the form of his wife, and I don’t think the American people need any more lectures on the evils of oil.  It’s long past time for these two to leave the White House, and be stricken from the American memory in the same way we have tried to forget James and Rosalyn Carter.

The next time I see Michelle Obama doing anything athletically, gracefully, and with extraordinary discipline, it will be the first, but until then, she should leave the nutritional concerns of our Olympians, our soldiers, and indeed our entire nation to qualified parties.  When I notice how emaciated Barack appears, I wonder how well she’s looking after her own family’s nutrition. In stark contrast, like the champion she is, Gabby Douglas handled the situation with good humor, and her gracious approach sits well with her Olympic achievement.  It’s too bad we don’t have a First Lady with similar grace and class.

 

 

 

 

Sarah Palin on Cavuto (Eric Bolling Guest-Hosting) Video

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Governor Palin with Eric Bolling

Governor Palin appeared on Fox with Eric Bolling to talk about the Ted Cruz victory, as well as other matters.  Bolling asked her about a remark by lobbyist and former Senator Bob Bennett(R-UT) who had said that the “Tea Party wave is receding.”  Gov. Palin responded: “Bless his heart, he’s a little out of touch… Bolling also asked Governor Palin about the convention, and she said “I just want to help,” but that “sometimes, helping means you step aside,” apparently meaning that Governor Palin won’t be part of the convention as a speaker, at least as it stands.  Here’s the video, courtesy of the Barracuda Brigade:

One-Half of One-Third of the People Screwing Us [Again]

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Boehner and the Boys

There must be something in the water in Washington DC, and I think it’s about 80 proof.  Speaker John Boehner has led the abandonment of principle once again, and I can’t believe these are allegedly our guys.  This evening, the rotten Republican leadership sent down the word that Republicans ought to support a bill that eliminates Senate confirmation for an additional 169 Executive branch positions, meaning that they just let Barack Obama have his way with 169 more positions he can fill, unchecked by Congress, and able to appoint the most maniacal leftists he can dig up.  Thankfully, it was a roll-call vote, and you can look to see how your Representative voted.  My own Representative voted “Aye” on this hogwash, and before this evening is over, his office is going to hear about it, and tomorrow, his offices both in the district and in DC are going to hear about it.  The purpose of confirmations is that there should be Congressional oversight on these appointments so no President can become too powerful.  Boehner and the boys just voted to reduce their own power but according to Mark Levin’s sources, there’s a reason they did so:  Mitt Romney told them to do it on the basis that he would like it if he were to become President.  What?!?

The purpose of this collection of elected jack-wagons is not to dispense with the Constitution, or to weaken the legislative branch on the basis that somebody from their party might become President at some date in the future.  It is their job to protect and defend the constitution, and that means to uphold its intent, which includes the Congressional responsibility of oversight over Presidential appointments.  Who in the world do these people think they are?  It’s not their job to “remove obstructions” to the process.  For the love of Pete, why don’t Boehner and McConnell just get together with Obama and give him all power of Congress, since Mitt Romney might want to be dictator someday?  This is preposterous.  It truly is disheartening, but more than that, it’s a bit more evidence that we cannot salvage the Republican party.  It’s broken.  It doesn’t represent us in many cases, and it certainly doesn’t represent our interests when our elected Republican majority throws we and our constitution under the bus in the name of expedience.

Others may take a somewhat less terse approach, but I no longer give a damn about holding back “for the sake of party unity.”    When they sell us out, I am going to scream it.  What party unity?  The only “unity” I see in this matter is that between John Boehner, Eric Cantor, Harry Reid, Mitch McConnell, Nancy Pelosi, and Barack Hussein Obama: They’re united against us!  I heard part of Mark Levin’s commentary on this, so I’ve decided to share it with you.

Clips 1 & 2:

Alternative content

Ladies and gentlemen, if you want to know what’s wrong with the Republican party, look nowhere beyond this instance of dire stupidity.  Or is it something else?  Barack Obama is a dangerous thug wearing the office of President like the robes of a king, and yet the Republican leadership in the House just gave him a pass on 169 appointments.  Their excuse is that Romney wanted it?  What if Romney doesn’t win???

Even if Romney does, do we want him filling those jobs without Congressional oversight, or the ability of the American people to call their Senators to object to appointments?  What happens when Romney begins filling these jobs with RINOs?  What happens when he fills them with more of his friends, in payment for their support?  What are we to do then?  I’ll tell you:  We should thank John Boehner, Eric Cantor, Mitch McConnell and all the other all-star losers in the Republican party who voted for this garbage.

Your voice as a check on the power of the Presidency is being stolen from you, but the they’re not finished.  They intend to bypass the confirmation process for up to an additional 270 positions.  That’s 440 total possible instances in which some President will have no need to worry that he’s appointing a louse, whether it’s the current jerk, or some future occupant of that office.  Do you not see what they are doing to us?  Do you not realize it?  They are systematically converting the courts and the Congress into a mechanical auto-pen for the office of the President.  In short, they’re building a dictatorship, and I don’t much care whether the dictator has a “D” or an “R” behind the name.  It matters not one whit to our liberty what party a tyrant might claim.

The Republican establishment is a part of the disease in Washington DC, and with incidents like this, it’s becoming apparent that they’re the larger part.  Obama and the Democrats can only get away with this because guys like Romney, Boehner, and McConnell let them, and this sell-out is a prime example.

We pay the price, every time.

This isn’t about Mitt Romney.  This is about the separation of powers under our constitution, and the role of the Senate in confirming Presidential appointees.  It doesn’t matter that Mitt Romney may become President.  It doesn’t matter if Ronald Reagan were to rise and somehow become President again.  This is a bad idea, no matter who the President is, and the fact is that at present, the occupant of that office is Barack Obama, and it may just be him again.  Defending the separation of powers is something our Congress ought to do, and on Tuesday evening, the Republican “leadership” in Washington DC failed us again.

 

 

 

Ted Cruz Wins Texas Run-Off!

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

On to the General Election!

Ted Cruz won Tuesday’s Senate run-off against Lt.Governor David Dewhurst in convincing fashion, defeating the Austin moderate by a margin of nearly ten points.  That’s a stunning win given how his campaign was outspent by Dewhurst, and it speaks to the commitment of activists all across the state, and a few notable conservatives who showed up to campaign for Cruz, including Sarah Palin, and Jim DeMint, but also that big voice on the evening airwaves, Mark Levin.  Tea Party Express worked tirelessly to get out the vote, and Amy Kremer must be ecstatic and exhausted.  Nevertheless, Cruz must still win the general election in November, but it’s a refreshing change to see that Austin insider David Dewhurst didn’t walk away with the nomination.  Texas conservatives and Tea Party patriots won a huge victory Tuesday over the Austin establishment!

Twitter was awash in comments all evening, and when various media outlets began to call the race, it was quickly a party of sorts as faithful re-Tweeters spread the word and celebrated.

Meanwhile, at 9pm central, Governor Palin took to the airwaves on Greta Van Susteren’s “On the Record” on FoxNews, and just before going on, she posted a note of congratulation to Ted Cruz on her Facebook page:

“Congratulations to Ted Cruz! This is a victory both for Ted and for the grassroots Tea Party movement. This primary race has always been about the kind of leadership we need in D.C. Our goal is not just about changing the majority in the Senate. It is about the kind of leadership we want. Ted Cruz represents the kind of strong conservative leadership we want in D.C. Go-along to get-along career politicians who hew the path of least resistance are no longer acceptable at a time when our country is drowning in debt and our children’s futures are at stake. The message of this race couldn’t be clearer for the political establishment: the Tea Party is alive and well and we will not settle for business as usual. Now, it’s on to November!”

For his part, Ted Cruz thanked Governor Palin, Senator DeMint, and all of his supporters and endorsers via Twitter immediately after the race was called, and Texas conservatives were able to bask for the remainder of the evening in the warm glow of victory!  Saturday, in attendance at a small, hastily assembled Cruz campaign stop in Waco, he noticed my Texas4Palin t-shirt, plastered with Cruz buttons, and he said: “Governor Palin really energizes a crowd, doesn’t she? She’s really terrific!” It was easy to see that he was thankful for her support, and appreciative of all the Texans who turned out for him at his stops around the state.

For my part, thanks to all of those who have re-tweeted my messages on Twitter in support of Ted Cruz, and thanks on behalf of a grateful state to Governor Palin, Senator DeMint, Mark Levin, Amy Kremer, and all of the others who so tirelessly labored to get our candidate the win.  It’s grass-roots activism at its finest, and I have had the great privilege of helping in a cause in which we dared not fail.  Thanks to the candidate himself, who ran a clean campaign in the face of withering, fraudulent attacks and dirty tricks from his opponent.  Congratulations to all!

Way to go Texas!  Now let’s help conservatives in other states as well!

 

Sarah Palin Goes ‘On the Record’ – Best Lines of Tuesday Night

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

On the Record

On Tuesday evening, after sending out a congratulatory message to Ted Cruz on his Senate run-off victory in Texas, former Alaska  Governor Sarah Palin went On the Record with Greta Van Susteren.  She discussed a number of issues, from Chick Fil-A to Ted Cruz, and the GOP convention, as well as Dick Cheney’s insulting proclamation.  Gov. Palin had a number of interesting things to say, and you should watch the video.  Pay particular attention to the way she answered the question about former Vice President Dick Cheney’s remarks about her qualifications for the office of President.  She also gave Mark Levin credit for providing the basis of her curiosity about Ted Cruz, who she had endorsed.

“Well seeing as how DICK, excuse me, VICE PRESIDENT Cheney, never MISFIRES…”

By the time I finished laughing, the segment was nearly over, so I replayed it once more.

As ever, Governor Palin was on point, and right on time.  As she continues to campaign for conservatives in key races, the establishment continues to take their shots at her, calling her “irrelevant,” telling us her endorsements “aren’t worth snot,” and that she wasn’t qualified.

After a while, it should beg the question: Who isn’t qualified?  Who isn’t relevant?  Whose endorsements aren’t worth snot?

 

 

 

Nikki Haley’s Stonewalling on State Hire

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Defending or Defensive?

I understand the Governor’s sensitivity to the question of her children, and the tendency of media to cause pain and injury particularly to Republican politicians’ families, but I don’t understand her refusal to discuss this case, which seems to be about nepotism.  What the media seems to be asking her is not about her daughter, per se, but about Haley’s own conduct.  She became rather angry at the mention of her daughter, 14, who works in the gift shop at the State House, but what bothers me in all of this is that while the media naturally behaves like sharks smelling blood at the first hint of “impropriety” among Republicans and conservatives, the reporter was not really asking about the Governor’s daughter so much as how she came to get the job in the gift shop, and whether there had been something improper in hiring her.  While I find it despicable when media attacks the families of politicians, and in fact, I don’t consider the families of politicians in supporting them, since we don’t elect the family members to serve, I tend to stay far away from discussing their families at all. I avoid particularly their minor children, but all children in general. It’s simply a ridiculous thing to do in all but the rarest of instances.  This may be one of those rare cases, because it’s not about Governor Haley’s daughter at all, but instead about Haley herself.

What the reporter questions in this video clip is nothing at all about Haley’s daughter, personally. Here’s the video, as well as the text version of the exchange(H/T Tammy Bruce):

At an impromptu press conference last week, a reporter for WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, Robert Kittle, asked Haley about her daughter working at the gift shop.

“Y’all are not allowed to talk about my children,” Haley responded.

 

Kittle pressed on, asking Haley if the story really wasn’t about nepotism – whether the governor had helped her daughter get the state job.

“None of that is true,” Haley responded. “That’s what makes me angry. Not only is this a story about my daughter, it’s a story that is based on false facts and none of that is true. Do not attack my children. Do not even talk about my children.”

Kittle then asked if the issue wasn’t about what the governor had done, not her daughter.

“I’m not going to talk about it anymore,” Haley said. “My children are off limits.”

It’s all well and good for the Governor to say to the press that her children are “off limits,” and they should be, but this story isn’t really about the Governor’s daughter inasmuch as it seems actually to be a story about Governor Haley and the insinuation of the reporter’s question is about the possible undue influence of the Governor in securing her daughter that job, roughly one-hundred feet from her own office door.  To everybody but perhaps Haley herself, this story isn’t about a kid working a summer job in a State-run gift shop, but instead about the influence of the Governor in placing her child in a job there. If we imagined for a moment that this had been her husband, rather than her minor child, the same question would stand.  Had it been her brother-in-law’s ne’er-do-well second cousin’s great aunt Imogene(any resemblance to persons living or dead is entirely coincidental,) it might raise fewer eyebrows. When it’s the first-degree relative of the chief executive of the state, whether minor child or septigenarian parent, there are going to be questions, and there should be.

Frankly, I’m astonished that the Governor of South Carolina is so ill-prepared for the question, and maybe that’s the problem:  Did it never cross her mind that there might be something improper about her daughter(OR ANY RELATIVE,) obtaining employment in a state job in a location well within the bubble of the Governor’s security detail and watchful eye?  I’m betting that many Americans would love to have that arrangement to keep an eye on their teenagers during the summer months, but most of us cannot, since many employers forbid the sort of arrangement precisely because it gives the appearance of impropriety.

I’m not one who blows his stack at the mere appearance of impropriety, since I don’t care that much about appearances, although I am keen to expose actual impropriety, but so is the mainstream media, at least when Republicans and conservatives are the ones under examination.  This is why Haley really must answer the question, because it’s not really about her daughter, and it hasn’t anything to do with her family except by virtue of her influence.

There will be those who might think I’m being unfair in singling out Haley, or that I should ignore the story because Haley is a Republican, or something of the sort, but the truth is that when this came over the transom, it was given to me by a conservative worried about the potential scandal implicit in the matter.  Yes, fine, okay, it’s not absconding with the treasury or something of that nature, but the part I find disturbing about this is how Haley used the line “my children are off limits” to close off further questioning when it is clear that her daughter isn’t the object of this story.  It’s a question of character, and this goes to the heart of the matter with respect to the sort of nepotism that characterizes corrupt government.

Let me be clear: I am not calling Nikki Haley corrupt, and indeed, without further information, it is impossible to know for certain. If I were a reporter in South Carolina, I would ask some pointed questions about the matter, and I would do so in a way as to avoid going after or even seeming to go after the Governor’s daughter:

1.) Was the position properly posted on the appropriate state website and otherwise announced in applicable media?

2.) How many applicants were considered, and were they competitively evaluated?

3.) What were the screening criteria applied to applicants?

4.) Does the state’s job application require the listing of relatives also employed by the state, as is the case in many states, including my own?

5.) Did those charged with screening the application notice the relationship, and did that person or persons apply the State’s ordinary ethical hiring practices in evaluating the matter?

You see, this isn’t a family business, in which one can hire one’s kid without repercussion.  It’s a state job, and that means that somebody along the organizational hierarchy who is charged with supervising the employee is answerable to the Governor.  How did those in all the intermediate positions handle this application?  These are questions that ought to be answered by Nikki Haley, for the sake of the credibility of her office.  This petulant “my children are off limits” business is fine so far as it goes, but where it doesn’t extend is into a matter like this.  All these same questions are applicable had the relation been a sister or brother, or anybody else of close relationship to Haley.

None who read this blog would say that the Obama daughters should be given a summer job as a tour guide in the White House, because the stench of such a thing would waft up to the rafters.  In the same way, and for all the same reasons, we shouldn’t take Haley’s indignant dismissal of the questions as evidence of a defensive mother, as she intended, so much as the reaction of a defensive politician.  Assuming the facts of the story are basically accurate, it is easy to suppose that Haley didn’t give it much thought, and might even have figured it was a good thing for her daughter to take a summer job so close at hand, but the problem is that had it been anywhere else, nobody would likely have uttered a word.

One of the things we discuss a good deal on this website is the GOP establishment, and what I can tell you is that much of what you see and experience as a corrupt political establishment begins with things as innocuous as this.  Those who truly have a servant’s heart know this, and they studiously avoid the appearance of conflicts and impropriety not merely to avoid some statutory ethics rules sink-hole, but because they earnestly believe it is wrong in all cases to gain such advantage, even for one’s minor daughter, even in a minimum wage, summer hire job, just down the hall.

The truth is likely that Haley probably didn’t give it much thought, but that may be the most troubling aspect.  Whether a child, a parent, a sibling, or a spouse, our public officials ought not permit such things to happen, because no matter how one slices it, it stinks to high heaven.  The fact that it’s one of her children is irrelevant except as a simple fact in the case, but the unambiguous part of the story is that rather than face up to it and say, “You know, I was thinking like a parent, and not as your Governor, but I’ve corrected that, and my daughter is no longer employed there,” it would likely all go away, and people would understand it.  I could understand it, and so could most of my readers.  What I can’t understand is the proclamation that her “children are off limits,”  as a means by which to obfuscate the matter in which it having been her child, as opposed to any other close relative, is not the controlling or even vaguely interesting fact in the case.  Governor Haley, we know your children, and indeed your whole family is not the Governor of South Carolina, but in seeking employment, they necessarily carry a strong advantage over others seeking the same jobs.

This isn’t about the Governor’s child at all, but entirely about the Governor and her judgment in such matters.  After all, it’s not very far, ethically speaking, from a job for a relative to a contract for a friend.  While nobody is alleging the latter, still it is interesting to see the Governor try to obfuscate the matter of the former, and I don’t understand why some Republicans think this is proper behavior, or why it’s acceptable for Governor Haley to use her children as a shield in the matter, when it’s clear that this isn’t about her kids at all.  It may be that the Governor had done nothing wrong, and that she had nothing to do with the hiring of her daughter, and nobody at the gift shop knew it was Haley’s daughter who had applied for the job, and perhaps she got the job solely on an honest, competitive basis.  At present, we don’t know, and the Governor isn’t willing to talk about it.  Should we pretend it all away because she’s a Republican?  I think not.  While I have no intention of assisting the Democrat media machine in going after Haley, I also think we need at least a simple explanation, and just the facts will do. Nobody is after her kids, and using them as a shield simply isn’t acceptable.

 

Why Support Cruz? Watch THIS Video!

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

On Tuesday in Texas, we are having our run-off between Ted Cruz and moderate Republican David Dewhurst.  This video was created in support of Ted Cruz by Roderic Deane, and rather than offering all the reasons to support Cruz, I’ll let the video speak:

Already, the dirty tricks are in full swing, as Dewhurst continues to court Democrats to vote in the Republican primary and vote for him in order to sabotage Ted Cruz. Texas conservatives need to show up and vote. The polls will close at 7:00pm. Get it done!

Ted Cruz has been endorsed by leading constitutional conservatives from around the country, including Sarah Palin, Mark Levin, Jim Demint, Rand Paul, Rick Santorum, and a host of others.

 

Palin to Rally for Cruz in Texas; Dewhurst’s Desperation Showing

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

Desperation

I hate that this is the case, but I must say that the antics of Lt. Governor David Dewhurst are despicable.  Dewhurst began running a new ad this week on the Internet featuring a woman crying about her son who killed himself, implying that Ted Cruz was somehow to blame is a scandal.  I find it offensive that any politician seeking to be the Republican Senate candidate would run such an ad, but I cannot believe any even vaguely conservative Texan would knowingly vote for this man.  The internal polls must not be looking all that spiffy for Lt. Gov. Dewhurst.  It’s time we go to the polls and give him a taste of how bad it can get.

On Wednesday evening’s show, Mark Levin also addressed this latest attack ad by Dewhurst.  Here’s audio:

 

Alternative content

Dewhurst is an amoral politician who seeks only power.  The worst part may be that a large number of Democrats may be voting in this run-off as Republicans in order to skew the vote in Dewhurst’s favor, and he’s quietly courting their support.  Democrats clearly realize Dewhurst is a guy who will frequently go their way in tough votes in the Senate like Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins, or Lindsey Graham.  They expect he will be a reliable aisle-crosser.

What this means is that you had better turn out for Ted Cruz, or the liberal Republicans and the Democrats will combine to elect another squish.

To the polls, Texas Conservatives!

In related news, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and South Carolina’s Senator Jim Demint will be rallying in support of Ted Cruz on Friday at the Woodlands, near Houston, and I will be there to join in the support!

Texans, get out there and show your support!  Show David Dewhurst he can’t get away with skewing reality this way, and vote for Ted Cruz!

 

WRAL(Raleigh) Releases N.C. Conceal Carry Database

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Unarmed? Here's Your Sign

Unarmed residents of North Carolina should be livid.  On the other hand, criminals operating in North Carolina must be ecstatic because CBS affiliate WRAL(in Raleigh) has posted a complete searchable database on its website through which you can look up people by name and address to see if they have concealed-carry permits.  Some are understandably afraid that concealed-carry permit-holders may be singled out by criminals, but in fact, what I expect is that criminals will search to see if their intended targets are gun-owners.  In one sense, this is like placing a “Gun-free zone” sign in all the places that don’t show up in this database.  All of the people who have benefited from the deterrent effect of neighbors who have armed themselves under the law will now likely lose that free ride.  Trying to embarrass or pressure concealed-carry permit holders, and certainly opening them up to harassment on a political basis, what WRAL has succeeded in doing is to help criminals avoid armed citizens.

Guess what that means for everyone else?

While the absence of a concealed-carry permit-holder hardly guarantees the absence of guns in a given business or home, it could be an indicator, and for criminals, if the address they’re about to hit isn’t in the database, there is a higher likelihood of catching a business owner or resident unaware and unarmed.  Ladies, you will be the first targets of this, because violent sexual offenders can now look to see if their intended targets are apt to be packing heat.  We know victims of sexual assault frequently know their attackers, prior to the attack, and now such fiends will be able to verify whether their intended victim is a permit-holder.  Consider that what WRAL has actually done is to point violent criminals in the direction of probable unarmed victims.  Despite the political harassment North Carolinians with permits might now endure as a result, I would not fail to be join that list if I were a resident of that state.  I would want every thug in the state who is aware of WRAL’s database to know that I am armed to the teeth and will defend myself vigorously. It won’t take long for the word of the existence of the database to spread to and among the criminal element.

This shows the foolishness of the left. In attempting to target gun-owners and concealed-carry permit-holders politically, what they may ultimately succeed in doing is to cause criminals to target everyone else.  When that happens, more and more law-abiding citizens will go get a concealed-carry permit, or at least arm themselves in their homes, and that will be a good thing for the free people of North Carolina.  This is typical of the manner in which leftists function:  Their immediate concern was how to score political points against a class of citizens in North Carolina who they hold in contempt, and upon whom they had hoped to heap derision and scorn.  Instead, they may well damn every other citizen of the state by helping criminals to filter out the concealed-gun carriers.

In fact, every resident of North Carolina should be outraged, because what WRAL has just done is to aid and abet the criminals.  On the other hand, the one thing law-abiding citizens of that state should do in response is to get their concealed-carry permits.  As is the norm, there will be unintended consequences of this action by WRAL, and one may be to impel more residents to procure their concealed-carry permits.  As bad as this is, for those who like to look for “silver linings,” this story may actually offer one over the long run.

Romney’s Tax Returns Revisited

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

How Credible?

Let me begin by saying that the veracity of the people involved in “reporting” this story is suspect, and as a consequence, I am bringing the story to you on the assumption that it is probably garbage. Nevertheless, if it should turn out to have some basis in fact, it would be an electoral disaster for the GOP if disclosed in late October, for instance, and having encountered it, I would be remiss if I failed to at least mention it.  Catherine Crier, who I don’t see as a particularly credible source, was on the race-baiting moron’s show(Al Sharpton) on MSNBC.  She admitted it was sheer speculation, but I bring it to your attention precisely because this is the sort of thing about which many conservatives have worried with respect to Mitt Romney’s candidacy.  We’ve been told he’s “squeaky clean,” and that may well be the case, but the Democrats are driving at this Tax Return disclosure business relentlessly.  Crier suggests that Mitt Romney might have been one of those who took amnesty in order to stay out of legal jeopardy back in 2009, when Barack Obama put the IRS on the trail of Americans with undisclosed Swiss bank accounts.

What I found peculiar at the time was the focus on a single banking entity.  When the government does something of that sort, they’ve either been tipped-off, or they have a specific target in mind.  Of course, we are talking about Catherine Crier, appearing as a guest on Al “Tawana Brawley” Sharpton’s show on MSNBC, which is to say that it isn’t exactly iron-clad, and Crier in no way offered a source, but the theory was advanced on Slate on Tuesday and over at the ludicrous HuffingtonPost as well. HuffPo is continuing its coverage as I write this.

Here’s video of Crier on Sharpton’s circus(H/T Mediaite):


Let us imagine for a moment that all of this were true.  What would it mean to the elections?  If disclosed now, I don’t see how Romney would avoid withdrawing from the campaign.  If disclosed post-convention, this would simply cause the end of the GOP’s hopes of capturing the Presidency in 2012, and would almost certainly ruin the down-ballot prospects of retaking the Senate or strengthening in the House, with Romney going down to flaming defeat.  If disclosed after a Romney victory, it would dog him throughout his Presidency, and the Democrats would spend the entirety of his term agitating for his impeachment.  Of course, Democrats would do that in any case, but there’s no sense giving them ammunition.

As is clear, conservatives should view this allegation with the appropriate skepticism.  The source of the information is far too unreliable to be taken all that seriously, never mind at face value.  Still, it should be a concern, and it is one of the reasons that early in the primary season, I was pushing for the disclosure of Romney’s tax returns.  He ultimately provided two years, being the 2011 and 2010 returns.  The return that would reveal whether he had been one of those accepting an amnesty deal from the IRS would have been from 2009, so we do not know with certainty.

We also know the Democrats want ammunition to use against Romney, and that in part, this demand for more years of tax returns is primarily a fishing expedition, and an attempt to get him to disclose that which might hurt him.  He doesn’t need to have done anything illegal, but simply something Democrats can paint as morally questionable or hypocritical.   That would be enough to severely damage the Romney campaign.  That said, I wouldn’t be inclined to comply with the Democrats’ demands for additional disclosures, particularly if I hadn’t anything to do with the allegations Crier tried to imply.  Here is the problem, however, and it is the only nugget in all of this that would suggest there could be some actual smoke, if not fire:  Back in January, when Romney disclosed his 2010 return, it included a disclosure of a Swiss bank account.  That account was indeed with UBS, the bank that had been examined and bullied by the IRS into disclosing some 4,400 American customers. BusinessInsider is now carrying the story, and they’re pushing it further still.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is why I urged the release of Romney’s returns following his father’s example, way back in January.  If there is any connection here, Romney might well be able to conceal it a while, but I would fully expect this to become Obama’s “October surprise,” his last hole-card.  Even if it were true, Romney wouldn’t have violated any laws, because he would have accepted the amnesty to avoid legal consequences, but I must also say that if he actually has this problem, and if Obama’s campaign leaks it to the press in the closing days of the campaign, Mitt Romney will not be elected.  There will be no time to spin it, soften it, or clear up the fact that he had ultimately complied with the law.  Instead, it would be a 24×7, non-stop “Breaking: Romney is a Crook,” with the media fairly jeering on Obama’s behalf, and the Obama administration would have its second term.

This explains why the Democrats are on this fishing expedition, but then again, if it is true, the Obama campaign already has that information, and is sitting on it for the big ambush in late October.  I can understand why Governor Romney wouldn’t want to disclose his tax returns, even if he had done absolutely nothing wrong, but the problem here is that if it were true, and if such a disclosure were to occur late in the campaign, we would have no viable horse for this race, and we will see Obama destroying the country another four years.  Of course, Governor Romney doesn’t need to release his entire 2009 tax return. In my view, if he wants to answer any question, this would be it: “Did you accept amnesty under the 2009 Voluntary Disclosure Program?”  Naturally, even if he answers “no,” there are those who will play up the “denial,” but here’s the other problem:  Given the sorely lacking credibility of the sources in this story, and on the highly dubious proposition that Romney does has some “splainin’ to do” with respect to this so-far unfounded accusation, should Obama catch him out in late October, the Republican Party will burn, and I will be among those wielding torches.

When you consider all of this, you might wonder why I’d report it at all, but my reasoning is simple:  The Republican Party has exhibited a habit of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, and with all that is at stake in this election, I’m now accustomed to being disappointed by the GOP establishment.  With all of my friends who have swallowed their pride and grudgingly gone along with Romney for the sake of defeating Obama, if Mitt blows it now over something like this, there will be literal Hell to pay.  I am in no way willing to take the word of this collection of leftist ghouls for anything, but ladies and gentlemen, trust Mitt Romney if you please, but I’ll be keeping an eye on this.  I fully recognize the Obama campaign’s desire to trap Romney with this, but I also know that if there’s anything to it, I don’t want my readers to be blind-sided in October.  If Romney can refute this, he should, because while it would never alleviate the clamor in the press, it would at least put at ease the minds of those he expects to support him in November.

 

A Teachable Moment For Barack Obama, Courtesy of Bristol Palin

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

Be sure to drop by Bristol Palin’s blog-site today and share with her what you have built, all without government’s help.  She authored a post Thursday in which she brings more needed attention to the obscenely foolish notion put forward by Barack Obama last Friday that if you have a business, and you’ve been successful, “you didn’t build that.”  Says Bristol in response: “I built this, Mr. President.”  Darn right! It’s time more people begin to tell this President that they have built plenty all without his help, and despite his interference.

Bristol has invited her readers to share all the things they have built, all on their own, and I think it’s a great idea to highlight just how misguided Barack Obama really is. Be sure to visit Bristol’s blog to show some support!

Right on, Bristol!

 

 

 

This Country Is Doomed – Video of 6yo Rapper

Monday, July 9th, 2012

Exploited

I really haven’t much to say about this.  It’s sad and depressing, and merely shows what has become of our popular culture.  Anything goes.  This video depicts a six year old rapper, and I won’t post it on this site.   I feel bad for what is being made of this poor child’s life.  I tremble with rage that an adult could turn a child into this sort of sideshow.   That any parent would use their child in this way signifies a complete breakdown of a growing segment of our society for which it’s difficult to imagine any possible repair. You don’t need to watch the whole thing, and in fact, you don’t need to watch any of it.  Knowing that some adult thinks it is a good idea to have one’s 6yo rap: “I can make your booty pop” is enough.  H/T Iowntheworld.com:

I am stunned.  This kid needs to be rescued from the adults around him. We are doomed.

The Anti-Ideology of Mushism

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

The Ideology of the Anti-Mind

Examining some of the things written by those who Josh Painter generously terms the “MittWitts,” what becomes clear is that some people are motivated solely by a form of reflexive tribalism.  Consider how so many choose their sports teams.  Many do so on the basis of geography.  A person from New York might well like the Yankees, while a person from Dallas might well like the Texas Rangers.  Most often, once those preferences are determined, fans of those teams will support them no matter the quality of their play, the conduct of their players, or any other characteristic one might wish to examine.  This is all well and good when we’re talking about sports that have no real consequence in the lives of most people, but when applied to politics, it becomes a more severe hazard, but it’s a hazard every major political party does its best to engender amongst its supporters.  The result of this approach to politics is what I term “Mushism,” the vague, noncommittal, unprincipled stance of he who wants to win and is willing to reject all ideas to do so.

The problem is that such thinking(or the lack thereof) doesn’t actually solve anything, or offer a path forward.  It results in a popularity contest that requires the dumbing-down of all participants.  You might wonder why this happens, but I’m afraid I’ve come to understand it, and I believe it really comes down to this:  By this form of choosing sides, one needn’t go through the trouble of examining any details.  One needn’t bother with records or those messy principles.  One needn’t know anything at all.  This is the realm of anti-ideology, wherein one’s support for an idea’s purveyor has nothing whatever to do with the character or quality of the idea.  Consider how so many come to support the presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney.  It’s not that he’s actually good, or that any significant number of them have read his fifty-nine point plan for the American economy, never mind reading up on his record.  No, it’s all about the perception of him as having won, as having beat back all challengers, and that’s all that’s really necessary for a crowd of people known for simply following the herd.  I refer here to the muddled, mushy middle.

These are the same people who in 2008, followed Colin Powell’s lead and abandoned John McCain.  These are the same people who so easily bought the hype of Obama, and will now quietly change their vote, never speaking of their last one because of how it has come out.  They don’t really believe in anything.  They aren’t conservative, they aren’t liberal.  They simply aren’t much of anything, and yet this is the foolish segment of the electorate to which most politicians panders, and whose support many political analysts seem inclined to see as some sort of golden egg-laying goose.

For those who make their living by shifting this segment to-and-fro, I suppose it represents an opportunity, and one can almost understand why some politicians so frantically seek the support of this crowd.  The problem I have with those of this description is that they seldom learn anything, or having managed to learn something new, misapply the lesson in a helter-skelter fashion that evinces no intellectual consistency whatever.  These are the people who can at once denounce socialism, but at the same time extol the virtues of Obama-care, perhaps amended, but with the core program intact.  This is why “Mr. Repeal-and-Replace” is so thoroughly endearing to them:  They get to say they are opposed to socialism while actually supporting its implementation.

I’ve always been troubled by those who exhibit the symptoms of a mush-mouthed moderate.  It means they’re willing to choose, but only so long as they believe they will be able to avoid the consequences of those choices.  An oft-repeated example of this is in the realm of economics.  I listen to some of the purveyors of Mushism, and they allow that the free market system is absolutely the only system in which free men and women can obtain true independence and self-sufficiency, but in the next breath explain why it must be curtailed or somehow regulated in order to obtain the results they seek.  The problem is that they don’t see liberty as an end in itself, but merely as a tool that will help many obtain prosperity, and they are willing to suborn it to their master plans in order to, well, “spread the wealth around” [some.]

One might well wonder how a person could intentionally make such a mockery of logic, and such a fool of himself in public, but there is an answer, and it comes down to seeking popularity within the tribe.  Everybody’s tribe is a bit different, because each one includes different people.  These overlapping social circles mean that many people will say one thing while among one set of friends, while when with another group, say different things entirely.  This flexible persona requires flexible, fungible principles.  In fact, what it really requires is that all principles save one be set aside indefinitely:  “Be popular, and say or do whatever it takes to remain that way.”  It may also be related to the fact that some people ignore epistemic rationality, instead preferring an instrumental rationality.  In this sense, they follow no principles, but will do whatever it takes to obtain their desired end.  It’s the difference between following evidence where it leads, and choosing one’s course according to where one has decided to arrive.

Let’s be blunt for a moment and consider what this means in terms of our elections.  It means that once a politician becomes popular within his party, his candidacy at some point is nearly assured if he or she can obtain a critical mass of support.  Mitt Romney has demonstrated this in 2012.  People did not swell to the polls for Romney so much as others were discouraged from voting for alternatives.  The air of “inevitability” helped to maintain an illusion, and his support in decidedly blue[r] states elevated him to the top of the heap, along with some nifty advertising done on his behalf, furiously tamping down the others.  Having arrived with this “presumptive nominee,” who shall now tell me he is the best candidate to take on Barack Obama, lead the repeal of Obama-care, and extend long coat-tails deep down the ballot?

This is the inevitable result of permitting the non-ideological to drive one’s party.  This is how a party goes about making the worst possible choice.  It’s why I’ve left the GOP behind.  I simply cannot be part of this ideology of fuzz, this new Mushism that pervades the party since Romney’s apparent “presumptive” nomination.  This is another reason why I see the “anybody but Obama” theorem as somewhat dangerous.  Is it really so impossible to imagine outcomes worse than a second term of Barack Obama?  Admittedly, it would be awful in every dimension, but I can think of worse.  One of those possibilities is the term of a candidate who effectively permits most of the Obama agenda to stand, and who would replace embarrassingly few of Obama’s henchmen, doing as little as possible to rock the boat in Washington DC.  Where does that leave the country?

Mush is the order of the day, and for those who like it, I suppose that makes of it a good day.  Mush permits one to obscure the details of one’s vision, the facts of one’s record, and the motive driving either.  Mush relies on purely tribal thinking among one’s supporters, and it is this sort of intellectual laziness that characterizes the whole of the middle.  Perhaps that’s the part that troubles me most: If one hasn’t any ideas whatever, or perhaps worse, holds contradictory ideas with no attending effort to reconcile the intellectual chasm, how does one make the claim to have acted responsibly?  How does one make the claim that one’s candidate is the superior?  I don’t believe it’s possible to do so with any sort of credibility.  I believe ideas matter, but the absence of clear ones is not enough to overcome bad ones.  The evidence will come in the Fall.

 

 

Palin Haters Not Exclusive to Left

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

Them's Some Kooky Sheep...

I must admit to having read some bizarre conspiracy theories about Sarah Palin, because in seeing what these nuts write, one gets a sense of just how thoroughly out of touch some people have become.  For far too many rank-and-file Republicans, it’s all a cult of personality.  Few are concerned about fundamental principles, to such an extent that they are unable to linger over even the most obvious facts that might stand in opposition to their odd-ball theories.  I have been sent a link to a group of such odd-balls on Facebook, where one may find the most obtuse concoction of cobbled-together propositions embraced by psychological delinquents I’ve seen since the anti-Palin bloggers I have covered in the past.  It’s a veritable nexus of dumb, and it seems to be composed of Romney supporters who seem to believe Sarah Palin is an evil genius, setting up for a 2016 Presidential run in which she expects to face Hillary Clinton in what these brain-addled doorstops term a “mud-wrestling match.”  It would be funny if it weren’t for the fact that they have nearly one-hundred members.

This means there many more deluded, psychologically broken people in Romney’s camp than one might otherwise expect.  Their basic theory?  Sarah Palin is trying to undermine Mitt Romney in 2012 so she can run in 2016, and she’s being aided in that venture by none other than Rupert Murdoch.  Yes, there are certifiable mad-caps in the GOP, too.

Before any of the Palinistas reading this get too excited, I’d like you to have a sample of the intellectual rigor of the people who are positing this theory.  Says one:

“The whole point of Obama care is to take over Health care by creating another government beauracracy. It’s a communist take over of an industry. The people will not benefit from this, because they are not supposed to benefit from it. It is designed to create more liberals who will be working as beuracrats for the communist government. This has nothing to do at all with Massachusets, that’s just their cover to throw people off the trail. It is a communist take over. Communists always have a group of people they oppresss as part of their power grab. Obama care has already selected the first group that they will oppress, those without health care who cannot afford it. They will be given an oppressive …tax, that they cannot afford. This will then be used to garnish wages and confiscate personal property of those who do not pay the penalty. Year after year the debt will grow. I bet they will imprison people who fall into the catagory I described. The beauracrats, hired by their buddies in the government, will over see this oppression. This has nothing at all to do with Massachusets, or even health care, it is merely a vehical to bring communistic practices full circle. Who knows what mandated laws will be implemented once by Obama’s beauracrats, get going? The sky is the limit. Health care is only the vehical, not the goal. It’s just an excuse. What are we seeing already with the millions of dollars being put into the solar energy. It’s the same thing, they are empowering their own as they declare war on us. Has nothing at all to do with Massachusets. And sadly, too many will find out only when it’s too late.”

I kid you not.  This sad person isn’t merely a terrible speller, but is also blinded to reality.  Somebody should tell this young woman that Mitt Romney imposed precisely the kind of system about which she spends most of her time criticizing, and that in fact, Romney-care is the prototype for the system against which she is railing.  Yes, this is an example of the logic you will find in this group of utterly helpless people.

Naturally, you can expect a torrent of useless babble from any group that announces its intentions thus:

“It’s TIME for the Conservatives and the Moderates to UNITE to STOP Sarah Palin from pushing her way into this Presidential Election. Whether through manipulation, deception, or down-right dirty politics via a Brokered Convention, Palin is POISON and always has been. This group is OPEN, we are not speaking to just ourselves and don’t intend to. Join this group, share a link to this page, invite your friends. There is a WEALTH of info here documenting the REAL SARAH.”

Of course, the hits keep coming, because this group of mad-caps is so twisted-up with hatred for Sarah Palin that they can’t even objectively consider the nonsense they’re spewing:

“Regarding the argument that Christie would make a bad VP pick for Romney because Christie woud overshadow Romney, I have this to say:

“To overshaddow someone, you have to do it DELIBERTLY, When that happens, it’s no accident. Anyone who thinks overshadowing is done on accident is a FLIPPIN fool. Decent people with character know when to hold back. FLIPPIN backstabbers never hold back, cause it’s always about THEM!!! People with character know how to make it clear they are NOT number one. Christie has character, unlike the last no account, backstabbin, FLIPPIN quitter!!!!”

If you were to choose to”delibertly” avoid this group, I would understand. The same poster seems to study slow-motion video clips of Sarah Palin, turning every motion of her face into a secret, subliminal message:

“Because this is the Sarah Palin Conspiracy Threory, might as well mention it cause it’s something I have noticed before:

Speaking of Historonic personality disorder and excessive attention seeking, just saw Palin in slow motion licking her lips and heaving as she was being interviewed by Hannity, her eyes got really narrow and then really wide as if she was coming on to him during the interview. I have seen her do this with other men who let her run all over them. It’s like she does it on purpose, not only for control over the interviewer, but for control over the male viewers. Wonder if anyone else has noticed? Oh, and by the way, when Palin kept insisting that she is supporting Romney, because it’s: ABO – Anybody but Obama, and she kept repeating this over and over like she was trying to slap down Romney and degrade him with that, I noticed Hannity didn’t protest or confront her on this. Wonder if the lip licking has anything to do with Hannity’s compliance when it comes to Palin?”

Yes, this is real. I’m not embellishing anything. I couldn’t fake being this stupid, and I don’t believe anybody else could fake it either.  Undeterred by anything even vaguely resembling a fact, this genius continues:

“The reason why the Palinbots are pushing for either Rubio or Jindial as the VP pick for Romney is because of this:

“The reason why the “base” (and I call them that losely, cause I think we all know that they are just a segment with their own selfish agenda, that has nothing to do with real people like us), is pushing for those lackluster two is cause they don’t want to win this time around, they want to throw it for their Imbicial Snow Queen. They know what they are doing, and it ain’t pretty. They can take it their two lackluster ones, and shove it where the sun don’t shine. Sorry for the crudeness, but they’ve earned it.”

Most Palinistas I know wouldn’t want either Rubio or Jindal, never mind “Jindial ,” whomever s/he may be.  If Palinistas had their way, I think most would like to see Allen West as VP.  Of course, the lunacy that pervades this Facebook group is quite stunning, and all the more when you consider this bit:

“The Tea Party is still dreaming of a Brokered Convention. Shame on them!”

This appeared with a link to an article in the Washington Times, in which Tea Party Nation’s Judson Philips is quoted as asking: “Is it too late to switch?”  This remark was made in the aftermath of Eric Fehrnstrom’s remarks about whether Obama-care is a tax or a penalty.  The rabid Romney-bots in this particular Facebook group simply cannot conceive of the thought that Mitt Romney might be seen by the broader base of conservatism as something of a sell-out.

They weren’t satisfied to go after the Tea Party, as they attack Mark Levin for his support of Sarah Palin, and generally regard Palinistas as brain-dead zombies.  Yes, they are leaping to the defense of Mitt Romney from the she-devil Sarah Palin, who they will tell you is a socialist.  That’s right, for these folk, Sarah Palin is a socialist.  Try not to soil your computer screen with spewed coffee as you laugh at these flakes.  I promise, you will read their ‘critiques’ of Governor Palin as very nearly a parody of leftist critiques, and I think this demonstrates my point from earlier Saturday.  If they had been mere Romney-bots, we might not have spotted the fact that these are full-bore kooks every bit as bad as any on the left.  It’s refreshing to have one’s assertions born out within the space of an afternoon.

Editor’s Note: While it is clear that these people claim to be Romney supporters, it is certain they aren’t doing this with the blessing or endorsement of the Romney Campaign.  Then again, he couldn’t tell the SuperPacs what to do when they were bashing Newt Gingrich, either. (Wink Wink) They could also be Obama-shills, attempting to stir up trouble between the Palinistas and Romney-bots, but at least on the surface, these appear to be genuinely nutty Romney supporters.  Go figure.

 

Dr. Williams Asks: Should We Obey All Laws?

Friday, July 6th, 2012

 

Blunt Talk

Walter E. Williams, columnist, economics professor, and occasional guest-host for Rush Limbaugh penned an article a few weeks back, and at the time, it was based on the possibility that the Supreme Court might uphold Obama-care.  As we now sadly know, this has come to pass, but what Dr. Williams asked in his article is whether we should disobey this law, and effectively nullify it.  Substituting for Rush Limbaugh on Thursday, he proposed that American soldiers would not willingly act to enforce a law on the American people if the people had decided to disobey en masse.  More, he proposed that since some Governors might be inclined to disobey the law, that we could see a vast backlash against the Supreme Court decision, unlike 1861, because in this case, most Americans disapprove of the Affordable Care Act.  Williams is provocative as ever, but his point is right in line with what I have been suggesting: This can be stopped, all of it, when we find the intestinal fortitude to tell our Federal government “No!”

Who’s up for that?  Are you ready to tell the government to bugger-off?  Dr. Williams asserted that we have become a “nation of wimps.”  Is he right?  This adds to the discussion I began earlier on Thursday. The difficulties are awesome.  One of the callers Dr. Williams spoke with was a woman who was concerned about his view on Social Security.  He calls it theft, a blunt assessment of the actual function of the program, rather than the program that politicians had promised upon enactment.  Sound familiar?  The lady was flabbergasted by Williams’ questioning, and it boiled down to this: “Who is going to pay for it?”  Her ultimate answer?  A shameful “I don’t care.”

Now the poor lady can be forgiven since it’s probably the sole source of her income, or at least a goodly portion of what she expects to receive in order to subsist, but the real problem is precisely that which Williams detailed:  The program is not sustainable indefinitely, and it’s already running in the red, so there’s no getting around the fact that money will have to be taken from younger workers they will never recover in any form, since the program is the world’s largest Ponzi scheme.  To steal from the young is immoral, and what the lady’s sole concern seems to have been is that she would be among the last suckers when the Ponzi scheme goes bust.  That’s how all Ponzi schemes end, as the thing goes bust and people are not able to get the payments out of it they had been promised.  Those final suckers are always the ones to take it hardest, and it likely will fall to my generation, those now with roughly one to two decades until retirement age.  We will have been compelled at gunpoint to pay into this system our entire lives, and it will absolutely not be there for us, assuming the country survives as such given the other onrushing fiscal calamities approaching our doorstep.

All of this, along with the current matter of Obama-care begs the question Dr. Williams has posed:  Should we obey all laws, simply because they are law?  Should people of my generation and younger continue to pay into a system that is designed to rob us blind?  Why?  What legitimate claim could one make to argue for the authority to commit theft on this scale?  This is a question I would like you to consider.  Let me pose it as it is, without the veils erected before our eyes by inserting a third party:  What would I be if at the advanced age of 67, I walk into my own child’s home, without regard to her rights to her property, and demand of her and her husband at gunpoint whatever I might need to maintain my subsistence?  What would you call me, were I to do such a thing?  A criminal? A monster?  A villain?  What would you call the man who could do such a thing to his own daughter?  Would it be made better if I sent a collection agent in my place? Would it be made better were it another man’s daughter and son-in-law?

These are the sorts of moral questions you’re going to need to answer, if we’re to have any chance to save this country.  It’s hard.  It’s rough.  It’s unpleasant, and causes pain.  That doesn’t relieve us of the responsibility to consider it.  On Thursday evening, I listened to the highly specious assertions of Bill O’Reilly talking about “health-care justice,” as I paused briefly on Fox News, flipping through the channels.  I sat there in stunned silence, as I realized that I had just witnessed another step in the completion of our “fundamental transformation.”  O’Reilly is now fully aboard with temporarily soft tyranny, and Fox News isn’t too very far behind him.

My question remains: Why does anybody expect that any sane, self-respecting rational mind would follow such a law? Any such law?  Ladies and gentlemen, there can be only one way:  Force or the threat of force.  Once you understand this, you understand the key to all statist dogma:  They will get you to accept a little force for an ostensibly good cause, say the “care of widows,” and before long, they will have you accepting slave camps in which you are a permanent resident with no hope of parole.  It is your fear upon which all of this rests.  Fear of death, fear of discomfort, and fear even of inconvenience.  Let me break it to you gently, as I feel as though I’m revealing a secret truth about Santa Claus: We all die.  On the way to death, most of us will experience at least some discomfort, and no shortage of inconvenience.  Knowing that, and knowing that we must all face that day, eventually, who will offer the excuse that they fear the inevitable so much that they will do evil to others to delay the arrival of that day?

Should we obey all laws?  No.

 

 

 

 

Some Republicans Secretly Gleeful Over SCOTUS Decision

Saturday, June 30th, 2012

Benedict Roberts

There, I’ve said it, though I will be damned for it.  The problem we have had in the Republican party comes to surface at times like this, and I’m not going to participate in the reckless concealment.  There are those of political motives, who care not for the disaster that is the Supreme Court decision upholding the Affordable Care Act(a.k.a “Obama-care”) because it serves their political ends. Within some circles of the elite Republican establishment – that thing George Will assures us does not exist while telling us this ruling is really a ‘victory’ – there are those who are absolutely giddy with anticipation in the wake of this ruling, though they must presently conceal it.  It comes down to two things: Some of them are purely fifth-column statists, who actually want this law, and others are motivated solely by the opportunity they see in the political sphere.  After all, what better way to unite wayward Republicans and conservatives then to hit them with a true disaster?  If you’re a Republican party hack driven by purely political considerations and motives, this ruling is a gift from on high that will help drive the vote.

Sure, it does horrendous damage to the body of case-law.  Yes, it does gut the constitutional limits on Congressional power.  Absolutely, it permits Congress to tax in any way it likes so long as some moron in a black robe can dismiss its unconstitutional aspects as irrelevant or insignificant.  True, it really has no manner of a silver lining if you’re an actual conservative, but so what?  At least it will help Mitt Romney get elected by driving the herd!  It will permit the Republican establishment to foist their own version of it upon us, tinkered-with and massaged as it will be, but still the heart of the bill will remain intact, and the Beltway crowd can be ecstatic that they will have finally killed the meaning of the constitution, the rule of law, and the entire notion of American self-reliance and self-determination.  Nevertheless, it also offers the chance to the GOP establishment to round up the herd, and get them all running in the same direction.  That it had been an establishment Republican who sabotaged this ruling should be the dead giveaway.

I would ask my conservative brethren to consider the evidence.  Even a flimsy, often obtuse Anthony Kennedy ruled our way, so absurd is this law.  A man who is able to imagine that Arizona has not the authority to protect its own citizens from foreign invaders, as in Arizona v. United States was not able to imagine the Affordable Care Act as constitutionally permissible.  Think of that!  This law is so preposterous, and the arguments of the administration so bizarre and absurd that Anthony Kennedy could not sustain them, but John Roberts, Bush appointee, did.  Do we think John Roberts is truly the idiot that his ruling implies?  Do we believe John Roberts is so intellectually vacuous that he could not see the absurdity of his ruling?  If we believe this, why are we not demanding Boehner and the beltway boys impeach this man as an incompetent?  Why? I’ll tell you why: Because Boehner and his toadies would never do it anyway.

We are being herded.  We are being driven.  We are being run through the political squeeze-chutes of the GOP establishment.  These people are worse than our open enemy, the leftists.  They are using subterfuge and stealth to reorganize our society into their global vision of statism, a nanny-state version in which you have little freedom to choose, and even less money or property with which to exercise that choice.  We are descending into a death of one-thousand cuts, and we have Republican party bosses who are gleeful that we are angry, because they intend to use that as the fuel to recapture power, not for conservatism or freedom, but for the aggrandizement of their own statist vision, complete with open borders and vast social programs to which we are all enslaved, but as a bonus, with our votes, too!

How else does one explain the servile pronouncements by some conservative commentators that the ACA ruling had been a victory?  How else does one discount the accurate assessments of stalwarts like Mark Levin, who sees this monstrosity clearly?  How in the name of most unholy Hell does one derive the notion that this is anything but a national tragedy?  In some respects,  I place this ruling above Pearl Harbor Day.  In terms of the long-term damage it will do to America, I place it above 9/11.  I place it as the greatest attack on the United States and her people since before its current constitution had been adopted.  It will certainly lead to the death of more Americans.  It was certainly a plot hatched against us.  The delivery of the fatal blow was no less a shock.   I must go all the way back to General Benedict Arnold to find an apt analog for the sort of sabotage this infamy represents, and all brought to you by a bi-partisan Washington DC establishment that seeks to rule over you.

Remember, when some conservatives reflexively screamed at the notion of the appointment of Harriet Miers, many felt relief when George Bush put up John Roberts, who was seen as more reliably conservative and eminently more qualified, as was my pet goat.  That was the sham in all of this.  Roberts is no conservative, and his ruling in this case makes that plain, lest there be any confusion.  Harriet Miers was a throw-away nomination, and Roberts was the goal all along.  This is how politics is done.  I was astonished at the speed at which the reaction to the Miers controversy was brought to a head, and more astonished still at how quickly they dropped the ostensibly reliable Roberts on us.  Do you remember who screamed first and loudest at the Miers nomination?  I do. Odd how that critic is now a rabid Romney-bot these days, isn’t it? I hate conspiracy theories, but I always thought it odd how that whole situation turned out, with Rehnquist retiring just in time to re-nominate Roberts for the Chief Justice position.

Ladies and gentlemen, the truth is that the GOP establishment exists to keep us in check, to keep us to a dull roar as the statists reorganize our nation into their vision of global, social, welfare-statism.  The GOP establishment advances the ball(never spiking it, of course,) and we permit them to manage us like puppets.  If you accept their talking points these last three days, you’re playing directly into their hands, and you had better believe that they see this as a victory, because for their agenda, it is.  They will be immune to Obama-care.  They won’t worry about death panels.  They won’t worry about government-enforced rationing.  They won’t be waiting in the endless lines.  They won’t have any need to concern themselves with the entirety of the system they’re building, because they are above it, after all.

The same people who tried at every turn(and often succeeded) to blunt the conservative Reagan revolution are once again making political hay over this decision, as they now know you have no alternative.  They engineered it that way.  Feel free to believe what you want, of course, but for me, the matter is clear.  I have seen suppositions that somehow, Obama bullied Roberts into this decision, but I find that unlikely.  Roberts was placed in this position to uphold Obama-care.  There are those who will become apoplectic at the mere suggestion, but for me, the matter is now painfully obvious: If we do anything short of replacing the Republican Party, this nation will be damned.  I’ll not be kept in line any longer.  The Republican Party must rip this law out from the roots, or we must make a new party.

Some are still convinced that there exists a win in all of this.  They offer as evidence that we are still free, this moment, and that this affords to us a chance, somehow.  This is akin to saying that as the last breath escapes your lips, the hooligans choking the last of your life from you, there is still some chance.  Technically? Sure.  Practically? No.  Violence is being done to us, and the best we get from most Republicans indicate that many of them don’t mind, in fact, although there are a few notable exceptions.  On the 11th of July, we will have a pointless exercise of repeal in the House of Representatives, a tale told and believed only by idiots, that for all its sound and fury, will signify nothing.  The GOP establishment loves a charade, and too many of us likewise adore one.

 

 

 

The Dangerous Self-Delusion of Some Conservatives

Saturday, June 30th, 2012

Et Tu, Brute?

In the wake of the Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act, I have noticed a curious phenomenon in which some conservative commentators seem to be so desperate to find a silver lining to the ruling that they have abandoned all logic.  Consider George Will, who wrote a column in the aftermath of the ruling that actually puts forward the argument that we conservatives should take the fact that Roberts didn’t rely upon the commerce clause as evidence that there might be some constitutional limitation on the federal government after all.  That would be a wonderful aspect of this ruling, if they had overturned the law!  Instead, what we have is a monstrous precedent set in which the court re-writes a law in order to make it constitutional by imputing into the act a tax that had not existed in fact.  This is an unmitigated disaster.  I have heard a few who have noted hopefully that this ruling will energize the conservative base, and while that’s probably the case, I’m not certain I am so concerned about the political fall-out as I am about the long-run constitutional implications.  You see, the political situation may permit us to repair the law, but it doesn’t permit us to immediately repair the damage done to the body of case law  upon which future courts will rely as precedents in their own rulings.

The other thing I have read is the bizarre notion put forward by the National Review that what Roberts did was more conservative because he exercised judicial restraint in not striking down the law.  Balderdash!  Once you realize the legal contortions through which Roberts arrived at this ruling, it makes no sense whatever to claim he hadn’t acted as an activist.  The convoluted logic by which he found a tax in a law that plainly states it does not contain one is an onerous breech of any notion of strict construction.  I cannot conceive of any intellectually rigorous examination of this ruling by which this can be seen as a positive by anybody who is in favor of strict construction.  When it came to the Anti-Injunction section of the ruling, it was held not to have been a tax, but just a few pages later, as Roberts performed mental gymnastics, he declared it was a tax after all.

On Thursday evening, Mark Levin summarized the matter better than anybody I’ve heard speak to this matter, in part because he understands the legalities in question, his Landmark Legal Foundation having been a participant in this case, but also because he knew Justice Roberts years ago when they both worked in the Reagan administration.  Levin’s critique of the decision mirrors most of my own, and indeed, there was one aspect I hadn’t considered until Levin led me to it.  That premise led me to yet another that I don’t believe Levin has yet realized in full.  What one must understand is that this ruling is an unmitigated disaster, and no search for some alleged silver lining can repair it.

What justice Roberets actually did was to expand the definition of what constitutes a permissible tax .  Congress is permitted to levy only certain forms of tax, and this one doesn’t fit the definition of any of them.  In dispensing with that issue, Roberts held that it didn’t matter, and that words don’t matter, and that plain-written legislative language doesn’t matter.  He also ignored the context of the law, and the intent of Congress.  One version of this bill had an actual tax, but Congress could not pass it in that form, so Congress altered it to contain no tax.  What John Roberts did was to ignore the actual text of the legislation, and to say that the labels didn’t matter:  If it looks like a tax, it is one.  The problem with this is that it does nothing to restrain Congress from levying new taxes, and ignores the definitions of what sort of taxes Congress may enact.  This is a wholesale extension of Congressional taxing authority because what Roberts ruled with respect to the particular form of the tax, insofar as the question of whether Congress had met the constitutional limits on whether it could impose it was effectively: “Close enough.”

That is offered to us as evidence of John Roberts’ alleged strict construction?  Close enough?  What this means, effectively, is that if Congress enacts some tax that it has questionable constitutional authority to levy, smiling John will be there to tell us it’s “close enough,” with every leftist monster on the court standing behind him to uphold it.

Ladies and gentlemen, there exists no silver lining to this ruling.   All of the crackpot, delusional happy-talk from some conservatives in media is designed to make you feel better.  You’ve just lost both arms and legs in a brutal assault, but they tell you, you should consider this a happy opportunity to enjoy the comforts of a new wheelchair and mouth-controlled joystick.  You’ve just lost your family to a violent home-invasion, but, they tell you, you should view this as a chance to start over.  The intention here is to keep you calm.  The intention now is to serve a political end, while your country is dying around you.  Your most sacred law, the US Constitution, has been crumpled and tossed into the ash-bin of history, and you are told you should do a happy-dance to the calming sounds of “Oh Happy Days.”

I’d like you to inventory the whole of the conservatives to whom you listen, or whose columns and opinions you read, and I want you to take care to note which of them are imploring you to consider some silver lining.  They are lying.  They have good intentions, many of them, and they have contorted themselves into a formless spaghetti of reasoning in order to find some good in this awful plate of refuse you’ve been handed.  Don’t surrender your minds by sprinkling Parmesan on it and wolfing it down.  Are there some limited political opportunities as a result of this decision? Yes, but they require the fulfillment of a whole laundry-list of “if-then” statements.

IF Mitt Romney is elected, and IF he doesn’t sell us out, and IF we hold the House, and IF we recapture the Senate(and at least 60 votes) and IF the moderates in either house don’t screw us, and IF Boehner and McConnell have the guts to do in repealing what the villains Reid and Pelosi did in passing the ACA, and IF they can deliver a bill to President Romney’s desk, and IF John Roberts and the other liberals on the court can be replaced, and IF Mitt Romney can replace them with actual strict constructionists, THEN you might have a chance to undo this damage.  IF any of these don’t happen, your constitution is effectively dead as a restraint on government.

The danger of self-imposed delusions is that you come to believe them, like a pathological liar.  It is by this form of self-delusion that we’ve permitted our country to lose its roots in reverence for the Constitution.  We cannot defeat the statists by pretending this isn’t the disaster that it is, if we can defeat them at all.  I believe some talking heads know this, but do not want to yield to what will come in the wake of such a monstrosity.  They’re hanging on, stubbornly telling us that the stench of smoke reaching our nostrils is merely an air freshener of a novel scent.  Rather than screaming “Fire,” and warning conservative Americans that the house is ablaze, the barn is wiped out, the surviving farm animals running loose in a frantic bid to stay ahead of the flames licking at their heels, many are now telling you that it’s all okay.  It will be fine.

No, it won’t.

Our Crisis

Saturday, May 19th, 2012

Thomas Paine

I was interested to read a piece and listen to the commentary by “Mr. L” posted on his Mr. L’s Tavern blog about why he won’t be out beating the drum for Mitt Romney this Fall, and I find that I simply cannot disagree.   His reasoning is sound, and in many ways, he repeats the complaints I’ve lodged, as well as those leveled by other staunch conservatives who realize Mitt Romney simply isn’t a conservative, by any measure, or in any significant way.  To be blunt about it, Mitt Romney is a liberal Republican, and while he may well be the party’s nominee, he’s not my candidate, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to hold my nose and vote for him.  I’m not alone, apparently, but there exists a growing number of people in the Republican party who are so desperate to be rid of Barack Obama that they will accept almost anyone.  I don’t like counterfeit conservatives, and in fact, it’s fair to say that in many respects, I dislike them even more than Obama, and it’s because they do more to undermine our nation than Obama ever will.  How many times have we been undermined by Republicans who rush to surrender to the statists?

In war, the only thing worse than the enemy is a saboteur or spy or collaborator, who pretends to be one of your own, while working to undermine you.  This is the reason that in war, we traditionally deal severely with traitors and such, because in fact, they are worse than the enemy because you’ve relied upon them to be on your side.  I have come to view the entirety of the Republican establishment in that light, and there’s really no getting around the fact that in many ways, they serve as a fifth column for the statist phalanx.  They pat us on the head like children, with all their solemn assurances that they understand the conservative point of view when they want and need our votes, but when it comes time to implement policy, the pat on the head is replaced by a swat on the behind as we’re sent to a perpetual time-out in the corner of the classroom.  After decades of this, we should begin to bring our own dunce caps.  We’ve been snookered again, but not by Barack Obama.  Despite the great Presidency of Ronald Reagan, the GOP establishment has never accepted our ideology, while they have accepted our votes and financial support.

We should expect Obama to lie, and to advance the cause of statism at every turn.  He’s a statist, and we’d be shocked if he did anything else, and for that reason, we have risen to oppose him.  The problem remains that we are still losing, but the reason we’re losing is not because Barack Obama is such a masterful politician.  He’s simply not that good.  Instead, we are losing because we accept leaders who dither and negotiate and squander every tactical advantage in pursuit of a strategy that doesn’t include any concept of victory you or I might accept.  Instead, the GOP establishment leads us from retreat to surrender, on one battlefield after the next, and the truth is that until we supplant them entirely, and until we push them out of the party, or abandon it to them, going off to form our own, we will never find victory, as it is ever delayed, forestalled, or abandoned as an idealistic goal never to be achieved.  Their approach rests on the basis of the “pragmatic” calculation that politics is all about the “art of compromise,” in establishment terms, but translated into language you and I understand: “Complete and unconditional surrender…over the long run.”  The Republican establishment offers that the statists are like The Borg of Star Trek infamy, and that we “will be assimilated.”

Mitt Romney is part of the greater parcel that ails the Republican party.  He’s exactly that which most conservatives can at best hold their noses to support, but at worst can merely look at with disdain, or even contempt.  As a matter of factual consideration, the truth is that Romney’s operatives were already undermining the McCain-Palin ticket during the 2008 election cycle in October, before the defeat, and they were already establishing the narrative that it was Sarah Palin’s fault.  Mr. L picked up on this fact, and I’ve discussed it here before, but I raise this only because Mr. L, while delivering the bill of particulars against Mitt Romney, mentions that the Romney bunch had been attacking Palin as early as Novemeber 5th of 2008, but I beg to differ only inasmuch as we now know they were attacking her a good deal earlier, in October.  It’s a minor point, but it’s not insignificant, as many of you voted for John McCain solely because he picked Sarah Palin to join him on the ticket, and in the context of a political “war,” it’s important to know who was working on behalf of Benedict Romney in shoving Palin under the bus, and when.  They didn’t wait for the defeat, but proactively began to establish a narrative aimed at undermining Palin for the future, and of course undercutting McCain-Palin in that cycle.

Bearing in mind that many of you were holding your noses to vote for McCain at all, motivated in large measure by the prospect of the able young Governor of Alaska as his running mate, it’s important for you to recognize who it is that you’re now being asked to support.  I say “asked,” but the truth is more like “cajoled” and “prodded” and “urged,” and in a few cases, “bullied.”  I won’t be bullied, so those vocal Romney-oids can cease with the e-mails.  I’m much too busy to read much e-mail these days, but what I do read won’t be the various iterations of “support Romney if you’re a real patriot.”  Excuse me?  The next time I see somebody named Romney walking a mile in the combat boots I once wore, talk to me about patriotism.  Otherwise, they can shove off.  While some of these were still in diapers, or standing on a stool to be breastfed in the absence of a Time magazine photographer, I was following orders all over the globe at the behest of a real Commander-in-Chief, so lay off the ridiculous appeals to a misplaced sense of patriotism.  It won’t work on me, so forget it.

You see, this is my basic dilemma, and it’s no different from what many of you now share:  Romney may well be all there is in 2012, but can we survive four more years of Obama?  I’ve decided that for me, the answer doesn’t matter any longer, even though I think the answer is “yes.”  Yes we can.  Yes we will.  What I’ve decided we cannot survive is another four years of an “opposition party” that doesn’t oppose diddly.  That’s right, I said it.  I have come to view the GOP establishment as the political enemy I must defeat.  I can’t defeat the statists by siding with their gentler , plodding version.  The constitutional republic will not be restored by going somewhat more slowly into that good night.  I recognize that many view Romney as a stalling tactic of sorts, and as a way to buy a little time to shore up Congress, take back the Senate, and so on.  I say to you that if you shore it up with Boehner, Cantor, and their ilk, while capturing the Senate only to place it in the hands of Mitch McConnell, there’s no point, and you’re not even delaying the inevitable.

I may find in short order that I am writing to read my own typos, and little else, but that’s okay by me. From obscurity only to return to obscurity is fine where I’m concerned.  I realize some conservatives have such an over-riding fear of Obama that they would vote for anybody at all who would oppose him, but I must tell you that I am not that desperate.  I am not afraid of the big bad wolf, huff and puff though he may.  My emotional, political and philosophical house is made of brick, and besides, I’ll always resist the further encroachment of government.  Over this last month and one-half as I have dealt with issues of a personal, professional, and agricultural nature, what I began to recognize is that Ayn Rand was correct: The only way to resolve such a problem is to withdraw your material support.  I think most of you already do that, each in your own way.  After all, how many of you have contributed to the GOP lately? You might selectively contribute to candidates or causes, but the party?  No. You’re not foolish, and you don’t wish to oil a machine that continues in many instances to work against you.

My question must then change:  If I do not wish to give my material support to the Republican Party, should I give the most precious thing I have to give — my vote — to the service of a party that has worked non-stop for three-and-one-half years to shove Mitt Romney down my throat?  A vote is a valuable thing, and I view it a bit like one’s virginity.  You shouldn’t yield it frivolously, because once you’ve done so, there’s no getting it back.  The glorious thing about a vote is that you have a new one to give in each election, although it can never fully repair any damage you may have done with its predecessors.  I want politicians to understand that my vote isn’t automatic because one has an “R” appended to his or her name, and that I expect performance.  The same is true of parties, and causes, and virtually anything in politics or the free market.  I don’t yet know how I will vote, but I am inclined to withhold it from either major candidate at this time.

There will be the inevitable cursing and gnashing of teeth aimed at me, along with the many others who may decide to stand in opposition to the GOP establishment.  I welcome it as I do the aches and pains of age that now greet me each morning , confirming  by unpleasant means the good news that I remain among the living.  In the same way, I expect that I will find that there exists some number of conservatives who will dislike my stance…immensely, but I will take their vocal displeasure as evidence that they understand the implications of my stand.  If the people who would tend to vote Republican in lieu of a conservative candidate wish to win the White House, they’re going to find their path difficult.  Like Mr. L, I will not “rah-rah” for a liberal Republican.  I will not trade my virtue for momentary satisfaction that will leave me feeling empty in the searing light of the morning after.

I recognize there will be those of you who disagree with my position on this, but that’s a deeply personal choice we must make, one and all.  I’m not so afraid of Barack Obama.  I’m not frightened of all of the things we believe he might well bring about, because I now view most of them as inevitable, and I know that Mitt Romney will neither stop them, nor even be inclined to do so if he could.  I also know that in another generation, we won’t have so many people willing to resist as we do now.  This is and has been the intention of the statists right along, as they have propagandized our children for five decades.  I have long agreed with the words of Thomas Paine, for so long as I’ve known them, and now that the time is drawing nigh, I will not wilt from them, or pretend they hadn’t been uttered, or written:

“If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. ” -Thomas Paine

Is this not the sentiment of all conservatives?  I think it so.   Will a battle with the GOP establishment be messy?  Undoubtedly.  Will conducting it whilst the raging statism of Obama continues apace make it all the more desperate a battle?  Surely.  Will I yield for the sake of a false unity that abides no satisfaction of my complaints?  No.  These times truly are what Paine reported as he wrote of The Crisis:

“THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated. Britain, with an army to enforce her tyranny, has declared that she has a right (not only to TAX) but “to BIND us in ALL CASES WHATSOEVER” and if being bound in that manner, is not slavery, then is there not such a thing as slavery upon earth. Even the expression is impious; for so unlimited a power can belong only to God.”

If this is not the character of our resistance to tyranny, I must ask “Why bother?”  Do I trade my vote to forestall it only?  For what will I next trade it?  A month’s delay? A week?  Another miserable breath?  If I must ask myself about the character that has been my life, I cannot for so paltry a sum diminish it.  Life may abound in compromises, but even so, knowing what constitutes compromise from that which embodies surrender is a critical distinction I cannot ignore.  I will not be bound to Mitt Romney, and I will not admit that Barack Obama controls my fate.

Really, This Guy Is Too Absurd to Be President

Sunday, April 29th, 2012

Even Tasteless Michelle...

Honest to goodness, one can’t make this up. Barack Obama’s attempt at humor is just abysmal, as he was neither funny, nor clever.  At the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, he took a swipe at Sarah Palin, and at those who focused on the story of him eating dog, all to concoct one of the most brutally stupid “jokes” I’ve ever heard, never mind from a President.  Is this guy really our President?  Even Michelle “Keep-on-walking” Obama seemed astonished.  His joke wasn’t funny, and while there was some nervous “we’ll laugh at anything this jack-ass says because he’s our guy” chortling from the crowd, I don’t think anybody appreciated it as much as he did.  Of course, that could be said for the entirety of his presidency.

Courtesy Breitbart:

I think Joe Biden is finally rubbing-off on this guy.  The last three-and-one-half years have been a non-stop bad joke on the American people.

 

Sarah Palin on NBC’s Today Show: “…When Barack Obama Took Over”

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Joining the Lamestream Media?

Former GOP Vice Presidential candidate and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin appeared on NBC’s Today Show on Tuesday. She co-hosted the show, and she also answered a series of question from Matt Lauer. It’s an interesting this to see her place Barack Obama in the proper context, that I submit is a better characterization of the manner of the current president: “…when Barack Obama took over.” This is exactly the right sense of the manner in which Obama has presided over the country. He hasn’t led anything. He simply “took over.”

Governor Palin went on to explain why she thinks this election is so important, but also why she thinks the GOP shouldn’t play it safe when it comes to picking its Vice Presidential candidate. Here’s the interview segment with Matt Lauer:

Governor Palin was featured in a number of entertaining segments throughout the show, and you can watch some of the highlights here: