Archive for the ‘Moderates’ Category
There is burying the lede, and then there’s burying the lede. In this case, the whole article can be flushed if only one reads the last line:
“When Republicans and conservatives once again start asking my opinion, I will know they are on the road to recovery.”
What could have been…. What could be…. If only….
It’s not that I disagree with everything Bruce says, because I don’t. It’s that he’s wrong enough about so much which causes me to question the areas where I agree with him.
P.S. I read the New York Times. Does the fact that I’m still searching for that Benghazi exposé make me a right-wing nutter?
P.P.S. That Krugman is being touted as a towering intellectual giant and some sort of litmus test for inclusive thinking, uh, please… And how, out of one side of your mouth do you dislike Medicare Part D but love Keynesism out of the other? Oh never mind, this isn’t about making sense. This is about feeling spurned and superior. It’s the same thing with his best buds Andrew Sullivan and David Frum. Maybe they can build a treehouse and decry epistemic cloture together. All by themselves. Just them.
When John McCain suspended his campaign after finally having some positive momentum post-Palin’s electrifying RNC speech, I knew it was over. It was quite possibly the dumbest political move I had ever seen and at that point, politics had been my focus for only three years.
Disheartened and discouraged, I soldiered on because Barack Obama would be, well, what he was: Bad for the economy, bad for international relations, and generally contemptuous of anyone who did not see things his way. It’s been worse than I imagined.
I joked on Twitter that I’d vote for a roasted turnip over Barack Obama.
My choice lost the GOP primary. I thought I was stuck voting for a turnip. I’ve been wrong. It has been a pleasant surprise.
Mitt Romney has shown himself to be an able, flexible, proactive campaigner. He’s had the press nearly universally against him and cheerfully plowed forward.
Strategically, Mitt is never put off by Obama’s silly mind games. The press’ obsession with Romney non-gaffes over Obama’s actual missteps has been … I’m at a loss for words. Put it this way: The press has so staked its existence on Barack Obama that it has decided to go down with the ship. No rats flee. No rats even attempt modest objectivity. And still, Mitt stays on his positive, pro-American message.
Policy wise, Mitt seems technocratic. That is, he doesn’t dislike government, per se, he dislikes how it is managed, and by golly, he’s going to do some restructuring.
Romney’s urge to reorder should comfort Democrats terrified that the business of government is going away with a Republican. President Romney sees a bureaucracy worth saving. That should inspire Dems, but no.
The Democrat position seems to be “Just as I am Lord.” Please, leave every bloated agency fat and inefficient. Keeping the agency and trimming the fat? Unthinkable.
Now, I go to the kill-the-agency-then-burn-it-in-a-fire school of government thought. I’m likely to be disappointed by Romney’s trimming of the verge.
Still, trimming is better than growing.
Here’s what’s surprised me about Mitt: I thought he was more of a nobless-oblige driven blue blood like George W. Bush. Oh, I know GW is from Texas. But underneath is a north-easterner who feels, like Obama, that the little people just can’t quite take care of themselves. It lead to many maddening policies.
Mitt is not that guy. Mitt’s midwestern sensibilities have hung on more than I thought. In addition, choosing to be a self-made man has given him confidence not only in himself but in people.
There’s an underlying lack of faith that statists have in people. They believe people incapable of self-sufficiency. Thus, laws have to be written to “protect” the citizen from himself. Mitt doesn’t seem to believe that. He has a live and let-live attitude and a firm faith in people. The attitude is refreshing.
When I get discouraged at the economic misery, I remind myself that multiple states have enjoyed quiet but quite solid turn arounds with good policy. Wisconsin and Indiana come immediately to mind. Bobby Jindal has been righting the Louisiana ship. This is happening all over America and it’s encouraging. California is a notable exception. Illinois seems to be a few disastrous steps behind.
Still, those turnarounds remind me that America is not lost. The situation is dire. There can be no doubt that whomever is elected faces some nearly impossibly difficult choices. My concern is that Barack Obama would just avoid them and his indecision would be a decision.
Mitt Romney will make the decisions. Some will be tough. They are bound to displease someone–all big decisions do, but what choice do we have? Doesn’t it feel like time is up?
So, it was easy for me to vote for Mitt Romney. Not as a defensive position, but as a positive decision. Maybe Mitt is just the man for the season. Maybe he can manage this failing state out of its bankruptcy. I say maybe not because I doubt his abilities but because the task is so formidable.
The media, left, and poll watchers seem 84% convinced that Barack Obama is a shoe-in. Or, it’s tied 48-48. 47-47. The models have Obama running away with the electoral college.
In my bones, I don’t believe this. Some states are going to be lost, no doubt. But this guaranteed result? Bah.
Vote. I feel good about my Mitt vote and you should, too.
Lots of people hate Obama. Most of them hated him and his moronic ideology before he got elected the first time.
Many more people loved Obama; they were enthralled and captivated by him. They thought he was different. He was special.
Back in the day, I had a photoshopped picture with Britney Spears screaming girl fans except I exchanged the picture of Britney on their pink T-shirts for a picture of Obama.
The Obama fangirls didn’t like this picture.
Everyone loved Obama and the ones who weren’t totally sure thought something like this, “well, everybody is doing it, so he must be okay. He’s gotta be better than the boring old boyfriend.”
He turned out to not be better. Depending on one’s point of view, he turned out to be much worse and for a variety of reasons.
Monday I spoke to a smart political mind who had been watching focus groups of wavering Obama voters in swing states, and he said that one word that those voters kept coming back to, again and again, was “naïve.” (The term was to describe the president, not themselves.) Those who voted for Obama won’t call him stupid, and certainly don’t accept that he’s evil. But they have seen grandiose promises on the stimulus fail to materialize, Obamacare touted as the answer to all their health care needs and turn out to be nothing of the sort, pledges of amazing imminent advances in alternative energy, and so on. He seemed to think that reaching out to the Iranians would lead to a change in the regime’s behavior and attitudes. He was surprised to learn that shovel-ready projects were not, in fact, shovel-ready. He was surprised to learn that large-scale investment in infrastructure and clean energy projects wouldn’t great enormous numbers of new jobs. He’s surprised that his past housing policies haven’t helped struggling homeowners like he promised. He’ssurprised that his signature health care policy has become as controversial as it has. The “recession turned out to be a lot deeper than any of us realized.” When a woman says her semiconductor engineer husband can’t find a job, Obama says he’s surprised to hear it, because “he often hears business leaders in that field talk of a scarcity of skilled workers.”
Naive. The screaming girls weren’t naive. Oh no. The new boyfriend was naive.
The part that bothers me about this mentality is that people who externally project their stupidity tend to not learn from their mistakes.
Still, it’s wise to think of all the divorced people you know. Few admit they screwed up. Most, to their dying day, will call their ex evil or wrong and that they, the innocent victim, was horribly deceived. Conned, even.
One Twitter acquaintance says this: RT @heatpacker: The #GOP must speak #truth about the 2008 Obama Con. Voters must not be insulted for credulity, but portrayed as victims.
A nation of gooey-eyed victims.
Well, for Republicans to win, I don’t think that blaming Obama voters for their vapidity will go a long ways to convincing them to vote for someone else. How many beaten wives stay with their abusive mates out of sheer stubbornness? He is too good! You just don’t understand.
America can’t afford that nonsense. So, those voters who saw the Obama fraud for what he was would do well to use great restraint and reinforce the (hopefully) better decision of the deceived masses this time around.
The best thing to do for conned Obama voters? Feel sorry for them. They know not what they did.
Or maybe there’s substance, I just simply don’t believe these people. At all. Even a little bit.
Ron Paul, resident curmudgeon and Fief to a little hamlet in a corner of Texas, sat at last night’s debate like Ebenezer Scrooge:
Ebenezer: [Giggling] No. Mrs. Dilber – I’m not mad.
[He ruffles his hair so that it looks wild]
Ebenezer: Even if I look it!
When I’m nodding along with Ebenezer and chortling at the candidates making all sorts of small government promises and not believing them, I’m pretty sure all is lost.
I just want them all to shut up, already. Even when I agree with them: Please, just SHUT UP.
This is precisely the goal for the media, I’m guessing. Elevate Republicans so insufferable even the snoozer Obama sounds reasonable and interesting in comparison.
No. I still don’t like Mitt.
Rick Santorum pointed out that RomneyCare was the basis for ObamaCare. This is simply fact. Romney’s response?
And let me — let me — let me mention one more — the reason we have Obama Care — the reason we have Obama Care is because the Senator you supported over Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania, Arlen Specter, the pro- choice Senator of Pennsylvania that you supported and endorsed in a race over Pat Toomey, he voted for Obama Care. If you had not supported him, if we had said, no to Arlen Specter, we would not have Obama Care. So don’t look at me. Take a look in the mirror.
Wait, what? How about we blame Specter’s parents. I mean, if they hadn’t had him, he wouldn’t have grown up to be a lousy Senator.
Heh. I suggest we blame Satan. Without Satan, Arlen Specter wouldn’t have had evil impulses.
Republican money, leadership, important people, how come you can’t see the obvious weakness?
And the fact that ANY candidate looks weak in the face of Obama just demonstrates how idiotic it is to play along with the media and these stupid debates.
Shooting ourselves in the foot over and over.
Being a Republican is like being a Lions fan. Except less hopeful.
More bad news. Even Ace’s … oh never mind.
A debate cometh. Gird yer loins.
Who will win tonight?
The better question is: who won’t lose?
Right now, big government Republicans are winning and therefore, America loses.
The only solace? Obama is destroying America and killing the country faster. Will being less bad be good enough?
Ah, hope springs eternal, which is why I write about politics.
Join me on Twitter and/or Sulia. See you then!
Mitt Romney, for all the irritating inevitability story lines, could have been inevitable. Instead, he’s fighting for his life against an annoying former Senator who lost his last race by 18 points. No big loss, there. Mitt didn’t even run again, so sure he was of losing.
Mitt should already be the nominee but he’s not and the reason for that is simple: He could not throw the center right even one conservative bone. Not. One.
Wait, check that. Two bones. He pandered on illegal immigration, but that was just to get rid of Rick Perry. Remember him? Yeah, the guy who was a fiscal conservative with social conservative underpinnings and oodles of executive experience. Oh right, he had a few bad debates.
But I digress.
So we’re left with Mitt duking it out with Rick Santorum and Newt who has been quiet as of late. Or is it that the press and pundits want him gone and/or are bored of him so just refuse to engage with or talk to him?
No matter. Mitt should have this wrapped up and he doesn’t. He could have it wrapped up if only he were willing to pick one conservative idea that he likes now, liked once and has consistently liked.
Problem? There isn’t one. Even the illegal immigration stuff is undermined by his workers being illegal aliens. He’s not that offended by them, evidently.
If there was a government intervention, Mitt loved it.
He has a difficult time speaking passionately about a conservative idea because he’s worked hard at being bland and inoffensive to liberals.
Mitt has made almost no effort to shore up the base. The calculation has been thus: Obama is such an atrocity that the Republican candidate shouldn’t offend the center, the base will do what it’s told.
That might have been true if the Republican party hadn’t already burned every bridge with the base. They didn’t just burn them though, they torched them and put conservative heads on spikes along the way. (Not sure about that? What happened to Sarah Palin couldn’t have happened if the Republican hierarchy, lead by John McCain hadn’t sat on their hands.)
The Republicans have been pushing back at the conservative base. They insulted them with No Child Left Behind and creating loads of agencies in a post-9/11 world and sealed the deal with government bailouts of banks, Wall Street, GM, and every sort of shifting money from taxpayers to irresponsible institutions and people.
And then there’s Obamacare. And Romneycare. Does this even need to be explained? Yanking the choice away from people responsible enough to buy insurance and making the responsible pay…for less.
And Romney defends it all.
If he could convincingly say that he made mistakes and give a soaring speech defending liberty and the American way, that contrast would be enough to ensure his candidacy. He’d win in a landslide.
He simply can’t do it. For months, he’s had the opportunity to speak imaginatively and passionately about America, the individual and possibility.
So, he fights for his life in the GOP primary losing to a guy who at least believes something. Santorum, is rather annoying but he at least believes the conservative rhetoric he speaks about.
Is Santorum a big-government guy? Yep. He’s G.W. Bush part deux. GOP base voters are deciding that’s better than Obama-lite.
Mitt Romney could have had it all and a lot easier, but he just can’t close the deal. He just can’t sell conservative…anything.
If Romney can’t shake the perception others have of him, this will be a replay of the 2000 Gore campaign. In the summer before the 2000 election, the Washington Post reported that 65 percent of Americans thought Gore’s “stiffness” was a problem for his campaign, and the same amount of voters said the word “inspiring” did not apply to him. Leading up to the 2000 election, “Saturday Night Live‘s” number one caricature of Gore was how Romney will be portrayed if he becomes the nominee: A robot. With a public relations shop as bad as Romney’s, get ready for some reruns.
Go read the whole thing.
And, via TPM, ugh:
The Tea Party would be the assemblage of the most annoying people on the planet if the Republican Party didn’t already exist or if Tea Partiers didn’t breath the same air as Democrats, Liberals and the Occupy Wall Streeters. Political people are annoying. They are, by their very essence motivated by ideas and care enough to do something about it. Most people just want to live their lives and be left alone. People in the political realm want their ideas and rantings to matter. They want to change things. That makes them annoying.
Tea Partiers are getting a bad rap right now. In fact, I just spent far too long debating Outside The Beltway’s libertarian curmudgeon James Joyner about the root cause of trouble in the GOP. It’s the Tea Party’s fault, he says:
@MelissaTweets Could well be. I think the Tea Party will take the party over the cliff, as it did with Angle, O’Donnell, Raese, Buck, etc.
— James Joyner (@drjjoyner) February 16, 2012
Oh dear. Bad Tea Party! Bad, bad Tea Party!
Whenever I see these assertions, I never see the GOP pondering their really bad choices in politicians that had money but had little charisma, political deftness or policy intelligence. See also: Meg Whitman, Carly Fiorina, and Linda McMahon. And that’s just three of them. Many bad candidates put forth by the GOP got trounced in the primaries by these Tea Party candidates because the candidates stunk so badly.
GOP apologists also don’t seem to remember what prompted the Tea Party to begin with: The Bailouts. TARP (something I was on the fence about, myself, but eventually came out against on the principle that everything the government touches turns to poo), GM bailouts, the stimulus and the gnawing anger that Republicans left their values behind with the creation of things like Medicare Part D and the Department of Homeland Security (two things that infuriated me at the time).
The Republican party leadership left their party planks and so people who actually believe in smaller government, in personal liberty, in freedom, left the GOP.
The sense that the government is doing too much for too many for little or not return; the sense that the government is piling up debt for a future generation enslaving them and their children horrified average people who decided to become politically involved and joined the Tea Party.
Anyone who is a third generation Christian knows the joy and dismay being around a new convert. It’s wonderful to see their wonder, love and affection for God and His word. It’s a little disconcerting to see scriptures distorted and extreme behavior in the name of zealotry.
The new Tea Partiers are nothing if not zealous. Sometimes, they misdirect their energy, but overwhelmingly, their impulse has been the right one.
Do Republicans really want to argue for the individual mandate, government control of the internet, and on and on? Well, actually, the current crop of Republican presidential candidates seem to, yes. They’re being “pragmatic”. No, they’re being sellouts.
The Republican party has consistently chosen big money candidates hoping self-funding will help the party. They’ve been consistently proven wrong on this account.
The Republican party continues to cling to big government ways and means. It’s power after all, and they seem disinclined to give it up. Even Paul Ryan’s budget is incremental, long-term and likely to not be enough to save the Republic.
The Republican party leaders cannot articulate conservative values (Santorum articulating conservative social values, notwithstanding) in a positive way because they don’t believe them.
And yet, it’s the Tea Party, the group who reflects what regular Americans believe, who is going to ruin the Republican party and by extension, the Republic?
The Government is too big and too powerful average Americans believe. This is not some wild-eyed notion. And yet, Republicans are not articulating a smaller government message.
Worse, Republicans are not voting that way. So, to the dismay of many long-time Republicans, notorious Dem-liters like Orrin Hatch and Dick Luger, don’t represent their states constituency or their party’s planks. Why have them? Terror at being primaried and losing power seems to be the only thing that penetrates the consciousness of politicians. So, pain is on the way.
Before the Tea Party came along, the Republican Party was a hot mess. The New York, California, Nevada, Ohio, and Colorado GOP (just to five states off the top of my head) stunk. Calcified, self-protective, hierarchical, detached, and consumed by infighting, it’s rich that people want to blame the Tea Party for failure when the Tea Party new blood is coming in and attempting to right the sinking ship.
Is the Tea Party blameless? No. I was dismayed when Tea Party Express went into the Nevada primary and endorsed Angle. The other two candidates were good enough and had a great chance against a very weak Harry Reid. In Pennsylvania, one Tea Party leader has nearly derailed very good school choice initiatives by being absolutist and self-aggrandizing.
Still, the Tea Party energy and idealism has been great for the Republican Party, the body politic, and the country. America teeters on the edge of insolvency and has been pushed leftward fiscally by not only liberals, but so-called “Blue Dog” Dems and Republicans, too. It’s appalling.
Two years ago, I wrote that Mitt Romney was a weak candidate and that the GOP leadership should be looking, and intently, for better alternatives. They chose to travel the path of least resistance. They should not be surprised that the majority (not just the hard-core Tea Partiers, who seem to be divided themselves) are seeking a candidate who shares at least some of their conservative values.
As for me, I’m not particularly attached to any of the candidates. It would be nice for a GOP complainer to make an affirmative conservative, or even Republican (read the party planks) case for Mitt Romney. I have yet to see it. But I do see a lot of pre-emptive blaming of the Tea Party.
Sorry, the GOP needs to look for another scapegoat. Looking in the mirror would be a good start.
So the race is down to a one-term moderate governor who framed the architecture of Obamacare and a Senator from Pennsylvania who couldn’t get re-elected. The latter is conservative; which is something.
The problem with Santorum is money and ground game. He has neither. His plucky Iowa victory is invigorating for his few national supporters and I might be surprised and see that he’ll be able to whip up grassroots support and get funding.
Santorum gave a beautiful and touching speech; deeply personal and affecting. Romney hurriedly, frenetically rattled off his stump speech from the morning. Ann Coulter loved it.
Anyone who pays attention to conservative politics is profoundly disappointed. Santorum is an uphill battle many ways: name recognition for one. He’ll get it now, but will it be enough? Can he energize anyone? He’s not the energize type, is he?
The other candidates fell away. My gut tells me that for Gingrich, it was his personal issues. For Perry, it was illegal immigration. For Bachmann, it was Bachman. She was like the crazy ninja who cut herself every time she slashed.
Ron Paul and his ardent young supporters will have influence again soon–disrupting CPAC and acting like college students loosed on a bender. Sarah Palin is right that the GOP needs to listen to the foundational concerns of many of Paul’s supporters: Fear of an over-reaching government, fear of too many wars in far-flung places for reasons not exactly clear about America’s interest, fear of fiscal insanity (completely rational).
On a personal note, I am profoundly disappointed at the result for Rick Perry. He gave a gracious speech. He has cancelled his South Carolina appearances. It seems over. It makes me sad. He’s a good man. He’s leads Texas in significant and beneficial ways. I can’t help but think we’ll be wishing for a guy like him when results are actually measured down the road.
Thankfully, I believe more is at work here than pure human folly–even though this primary season and President Obama’s fiscal policy have been shot through with nonsense.
And so ends a miserable Iowa caucus. If I were a guessing woman, I’d guess that Mitt Romney will be the eventual nominee.
His moderate, liberal even, stances will be portrayed as crazy-eyed conservative by the media–which is a patent lie.
Mitt’s Romneycare debacle in Massachusetts will neutralize the horror that is Obamacare. Mitt’s legendary flip-flops will trump, in the media’s eyes, Obama’s flop after flop after flop.
DC talking heads will be stunned to see a listless and apathetic base disgusted that the GOP cannot put forth a Republican with any principles.
The race will be close and some sort of defining moment will push people toward Romney or Obama, but the election won’t be the nuclear blowout it should be.
And if my record holds true, I’ll be wrong about this all and you all can take comfort in my horrible predictions. Let’s hope this is a George Costanza post and everything I write is exactly opposite to what will actually happen.
On a more negative note, I was right about McCain and no one listened to me then, either.
So, here’s to being wrong! 2012 is going to be a very long year.
Governor Perry freaked out the political class this week by suggesting bold government reforms like these [it’s only 19 seconds long]:
Oh wait! That’s not Governor Perry! That’s Ronald Reagan and he was suggesting the same thing. He even talked specifically about getting rid of 75,000 government employees.
Doug Mataconis, resident cynic and Outside The Beltway (misnamed–should be Conventional Wisdom) blogger, says this:
In reality, though, much like Perry’s own chances to win the Republican nomination, there’s very little chance any of these ideas would ever see the light of day. To the extent Perry intended to propose a real plan, he failed here. Instead, all we’ve got are gimmicks.
Rhetoric is not a gimmick. And a Ron Paulian purist like Doug Mataconis should feel slightly ashamed for attacking a candidate that has little chance of success. I would wager that Rick Perry’s chances are far greater than Ron Paul’s.
But back to the point.
America has been pushed leftward both rhetorically and policy-wise for years. Bush senior, Clinton, and then George W. Bush all believed in a sort of government care-taker state. Most damaging to the body rhetoric was “Compassionate Conservatism”–a phrase that ceded rhetorical ground to the mean ways of big government and socialism.
It’s frankly rather astonishing that a libertarian would complain about a plan to get rid of government departments, but then, that’s what libertarians do. They complain.
For too long, self-reliance, ingenuity, creativity, personal responsibility, American exceptionalism, optimism, and all those other plucky American values have given way to Obama’s maudlin mealy-mouthed malaise.
Words matter. Rhetoric matters.
No one wants empty words. Words and ideas push in the opposite direction, lead the mind and heart different ways and open the policy world to ideas that have been long maligned are NOT empty. They’re purposeful.
Just like Ronald Reagan knew what he was doing when facing Debbie Downer Jimmy Carter, Rick Perry knows what he’s doing facing Bob the Blamer Obama.
Politics is about deeds AND words. Rick Perry has the deeds covered. One only has to look at his Texas record of reform and conservative (and yes, libertarian) change to see that.
A leader, though, must also use words and push ideas. For those having trouble with Perry’s government reform plan, pretend you’re a teenager again. Perry’s plan is like a kid asking for a 2 am curfew when he really wants 1 am or even midnight. He’s still getting to stay out later than he wanted.
Rick Perry is pushing the envelope and he knows it. So did Reagan, though, and Reagan’s words and ideas pushed America into a couple decades of growth and prosperity.
Words and ideas matter. They are the precursor of policy. The libs know this, which is why they’re howling. What’s confusing is why a libertarian would be bothered by small government rhetoric and a plan to match it.
At Blogcon 2011 in Denver, Colorado, some fresh U.S. Senate and House hopefuls visited with bloggers. Here’s a little info on all of them:
Karen Harrington: Tough lady. Owns three restaurants. Bawdy, smart, funny and determined to win a tough election against Debbie Wassmerman-Schultz. Consider the following: If redistricting goes as planned, that shifts her district more favorably to Harrington. More importantly, a tight races keeps DWS from flitting around the country on behalf of Obama. She’ll have to stay back home and fight for her seat. We want her to have to work. Taped interview here.
Dan Lilenquist: Dan is a state representative in Utah and just won Legislator of the Year for how he has dealt with entitlements in Utah. Rumor has it that he may primary Orrin Hatch and win that seat. I’ve heard people I respect shrug and say that we shouldn’t be primarying Republicans this year. Hogwash. The new blood in the Senate has made a significant difference pulling the Senate to the Right. We need more constitutionally-based folks in there. Suck it up and get back to work Tea Party! Interview here.
Richard Mourdock: Richard is Indiana’s state treasurer and running against Obama’s favorite liberal Republican Dick Lugar. Again, tired of your ideals being sold down the river by a guy who works for the other side? Well, we need to continue to hold these Republicans accountable. See why here. Interview here.
With the national presidential election turning into a hot mess, keeping eyes on the Senate prize and adding seats there is an encouraging endeavor.