Posted by: theoptimisticconservative | January 17, 2012

Nominating Romney: Pooch punt, or just a 3-and-out?

The problem with nominating Mitt Romney is and has always been that it’s choosing to play on defense.

Romney is not a small-government, limited-government conservative.  He will not go on offense against the dangerous principles on which government is being conducted today in the United States.  This is thought by many to be behind his “electability,” but it makes him the most defensive of potential Republican candidates.

RomneyCare is only one example of Romney’s comfort with big government, but it’s an important one.  Romney has continued to defend the principle of an absolute purchase mandate, levied on anyone with an income and a pulse.  The health “insurance” purchase mandate is not like the mandate for driver’s insurance, because citizens can opt out of being drivers.  But avoiding the health-insurance purchase mandate of RomneyCare requires opting out of life (or leaving Massachusetts).

Purchase mandates are not so much a states’ prerogatives issue as an issue of the principles controlling the purpose and scope of government.  RomneyCare is wrong for Massachusetts because it’s bad government.  Of course people in Massachusetts can choose to levy such a mandate if they want, but that doesn’t make it a good idea.  It puts government in an intrusive role that not only invites but demands a spiraling level of intrusion, one that pits citizen against citizen, rent-seekers against taxpayers, and government against liberty.

The US federal government is engaged today in far too many things that promote all three of these conflicts.  Advocacy groups leverage the EPA to prevent business activities that would generate thousands of jobs.  Both unions and big businesses lobby incessantly for regulations and special laws that will ensure they don’t have to face the consequences of unprofitability.  Yet very often, the conditions that make them unprofitable are themselves produced by regulation, rather than market factors.  These sources of cost to the public purse go increasingly uncriticized; the fiscal disaster, we are told, can only be averted by taking more from the taxpayers and further modifying the taxpayers’ behavior.

Health care is, as always, a prime example of this kind of interplay.  Once the premise of public funding for health care is established, everything anyone does becomes a cost issue for the public treasury.  There are some protected categories of behavior, like those that lead to STDs and AIDS, but constituencies arise for controlling people’s eating habits and fertility, and for proclaiming everything under the sun – including the sun itself – to be a public health hazard.  The urgent necessity of controlling what people do is amplified by the centralized, spiraling cost of health-care disbursements.  Few forms of government-brokered activism are as inimical to individual liberty.

Government – not social or economic dynamics – is now the primary means of pitting citizen against citizen.  This needs to change: the scope and independence of federal agencies and the regulatory impulse need to be dramatically reined in.  We can’t afford for the federal government to continue on the premise of the last 80 years.  The basic premise must change.

This doesn’t mean that the changes need to be abrupt, but they do need to be scheduled and prosecuted with determination.  Only someone who believes that, however, will be willing to make the case, and face down the multifarious opposition to reducing the footprint of government on principle.  Reduction on principle means that government can’t come back in 10 years and start regulating again things that it was ordered not to regulate in 2013 (or tighten regulations that were loosened).  It means that the apparatus for reclaiming an over-regulatory posture won’t even be there in 10 years.

Romney is not the man who will do this.  He has coexisted comfortably with the regulatory premise throughout his public life – even during his years at Bain Capital.  He sees a need to change some regulations on the margin, but he is not an advocate of fundamentally changing the premise on which we now regulate ourselves.

Although it’s not the point of this post, I will suggest, for comparison, what a truly deregulatory posture might look like.  Besides eliminating, or at least drastically reducing, the size and charter of the EPA and other federal agencies, a key shift in principle would be requiring that Congress positively approve every new regulation.  We already have the condition in which Congress sets parameters for the regulatory charters of the various agencies – and that is what has gotten us to the current environment of wild, often incoherent overregulation.  It is a good principle to start with, that whatever forms of regulation Congress doesn’t have time to attend to directly, we don’t need anyway.

Much reduction in the footprint of regulation would flow from that.  I also like Rick Perry’s proposal to reduce the amount of time Congress spends in session.  It is shifts in principle like this that will change the basis of government.  Changing that basis is our only hope for arresting the fiscal freight train headed for the mother of all wrecks.  But Romney is not the candidate who will push for the changes we need.

That doesn’t mean he wouldn’t be better than Obama.  He would.  But electing Romney will mean at least four more years of playing on defense:  trying to mitigate the score being racked up by the other side, rather than playing on offense to score touchdowns for liberty and smaller government.  That’s why so many of the voters can’t get excited about Romney.  They know we need someone to lead us in a direction of fundamental change – a shift in the principle of government, back toward the limited-government idea of the Founders, plus a very big reduction in its footprint – and they know Romney won’t do that.

I would put the other candidates (with Ron Paul as an outlier) in this order, as to how much they would push for fundamental change: Perry, Gingrich, Santorum.  All three would go further than Romney would in this regard.  If any of these candidates got a Republican-controlled Congress, we could expect some amount of actual reduction in the persistent basis for regulation.

Romney’s approach would be to tinker with it on the margins.  I will vote for Romney if he’s the choice, just as I will vote for any of the other three.  But what we need is a small-government president who will go on offense.  Defense will only stave off the eventual loss.  And as we see with the Republican apathy over Romney, in politics – unlike football – defense isn’t exciting or motivational.

J.E. Dyer’s articles have appeared at Hot Air’s Green Room, Commentary’s “contentions,Patheos, and The Weekly Standard online.


Responses

  1. Well said. Couldn’t agree more. I even favor your ranking of the non-Romneys but have doubts about Perry’s ability to reverse his (sadly declining) appeal to the public. Couple that with Newt’s stellar job last night, Adelson’s backing, and telling “left” jabs at Romney, Newt might be the one to pull it off. Thank goodness it’s still early. Anything can happen.

  2. I’m not sure what Romney is. Conservatives fear that he is not a true conservative now, though he says he is, but they are sure he was a liberal back in the day when he said he was a liberal. It is possible that the conservative Romney is the real one and the liberal one was a chimera. (It’s also possible that he is neither.)

    The standard strategic advice for GOP candidates is to run right for the primaries, then pivot to the center for the general. What Romney is doing is so far consistent with the opposite: run to the center in the primaries, then move right for the general. That strategy makes sense if (a) you are facing many competitors on the right in the primaries and (b) you believe the electorate is genuinely conservative.

    To say his actions are “consistent with” this strategy is not to say that this *is* his strategy. But at least there is a strategy that is consistent with his actions. It’s hard to find a strategy that can explain Gingrich’s actions, or Perry’s, or Paul’s. (Santorum’s actions are consistent, but not with a winning strategy.)

    • This strategy of veering to the centre is one that is shared by all successful presidential candidates, Republican and Dem. They don’t get elected otherwise because that’s where the majority opinion lies. The most important feature of our Constitution is of course the idea of limited government, but this means, principally, the system of checks and balances that encourages government by consensus. Ideologues who don’t understand democracy or the Constitution like to portray the idea of limited government in a more limited way. The idea of consensus, compromise, and synthesis repels them. They see consensus as ideological surrender rather than an inherent strength of our system. Their vision is more in keeping with some Marxian dialectic than American democracy.

  3. yes, Romney is not a small-government and limited-government conservative, or what you would envision one to be, and therein lies his ability to be accepted by the American voters and to be elected as replacement for Obama.

    None of the rest of your Repubican hopefuls are worth a cup of warm pi–

    recycled pilsner in a general election.

    • A “replacement for Obama.” Exactly right. That’s all he would be.

      Glad to hear you’re not enthusiastic about the rest of the field. I find that encouraging.

  4. OK JE… Lemme ‘splain why we are getting Mitt forced down our throats:

    “I will vote for Romney if he’s the choice, just as I will vote for any of the other three…”

    Until people with a public voice, stand up and say “Not only NO!!!! but HELL NO!!!” to a Romney run, we are toast, the GOP is toast… and No I fundamentally disagree with that part of your assessment… Romney shows absolutely no sign in his past performance or current comportment of being one iota of anything better or different from Obama
    Until the grass roots quits equivocating and mincing around like they have been wedgied by Harry Reid for the umpteenth time… then we will lose.

    Until Rush, Hannity, Levin… Hedgecock… et al… finally stop playing their all things to all people cards, and decide on one Conservative Candidate… This insanity will continue.

    They will have lost an opportunity that the Marxist Media never misses… Oprah made Obummer… Rush and Comany could make a Santorum, or Gingrich, or Perry… and undo an obvious fraud like Romney. Time to put up or shut up.

    So… For what my small voice shouting into a hurricane I shout at the top of my lungs…

    MITT ROMNEY IS A DISASTER!!! HE IS A LIBERAL DEMOCRAT PHONY; THEREFORE I SHALL NOT VOTE FOR HIM! EVER!

    If you give people a choice between easy weakness and hard strength… they will generally pick the easy weakness… it’s too comfortable and too easy to blame someone else when the inevitable crap happens.

    r/TMF

    • Hopefully your respolve will be shared by a significant number of Republican voters.

  5. Sigh. Once again… This is another, “It’s the economy, stupid” election. Republicans CANNOT, on their own, defeat Obama.

    If Obama looses it will ONLY be because he’s seen by enough independents as incompetent. Obama is and will continue to portray THE PROBLEM as intransigent Republican blockage (probably a winning strategy) and, the MSM will beat that bandwagon unceasingly to death.

    Which means…given the ‘still’ near total gullibility of the middle electorate, that we are almost certainly going to have another 4 yrs of Obama.

    By 2016, the public may be willing to acknowledge that the economic ‘rain’ on their heads is, actually the left’s piss poor economic ‘solutions’. The country may then be ready to turn to the right but even then, don’t count on it without a credible and charismatic candidate (another Reagan).

    Romney has, by far, the best economic resume which, if enough independents don’t swallow Obama’s lies, distortions and evasions, might be just enough in 2012 to win the election. But NO other factor means squat in this election. Romney is a RINO but unfortunately, given the brainwashed public, its a RINO or Obama… (so ‘Mighty Fahvaag’ et al, enjoy Obama’s continued reign)

    Gingrich is too intellectual, Perry too small town and Santorum too socially conservative.

    Palin is what the country needs but the country is not yet ready (if ever) to accept her. She’s got the ‘right stuff’ but few recognize it and the MSM has politically crucified her.

    So…until we master how to really counter the Democrats MSM propaganda machine, compellingly articulate why the left’s ‘solutions’ are a ‘cure’ worse than the disease, start looking at Islam realistically (tragically, a couple of successful attacks will do it)…plus reach the point where the majority of Americans recognize and acknowledge Churchill’s aphorism: “The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.” we aren’t going to get enough Americans to wake up to the reality of the left’s gradual destruction of liberty.

    • Gingrich is not really an intellectual, Geoffrey, he only plays one on TV.

      and if the Republicans want to back Romney, he CAN win so a second 4 for Obama is no sure thing.

      • To be fair, fuster, neither is Barry. He essentially regurgitates with relative awkwardness wormed over lefty propaganda that could be spewed with the same success by most 8th graders of slightly above average intelligence who have been properly indoctrinated by members of the teachers’ unions.

        • I wouldn’t say that Obama was either, either

        • Obviously he doesn’t measure up to the intellectual rigour of a genius like yourself.

          • thank you P, and if you’ve noted it, then who could gainsay it ?

    • Hasn’t it occurred to you that Palin is unelectable precisely because in the opinion of the vast majority of the American people she HASN’T the “right stuff”.

      • Sarah’s stuff is perfect. She does not appeal to beta males.

  6. Ah… No.

    There is no vaunted middle. The MIDDLE is actually an interleaved overlapping of the left and center left of the Republican Party (the Establishment), and the moderate corporatist Democrat Party. Basically the constant drive to prop up “moderates” – across the 20th Century with the exception of Goldwater (who the “GOP Moderates” abandoned), and Reagan (who the Republican “moderates” attempted to run John Anderson to split the vote and try to re-elect Carter).

    The Republican Party has been dominated by the Northeastern Establishment Ivy League. The precious “middle” is that group. It floats conveniently between the power elites of both parties, lining its pockets, manipulating its social issues, and generally duping the remainder of the hoi polloi into voting for them.

    Independents are scattered like a freespace map on a disk drive across the political spectrum. Many are smitten by the power, and wait slavishly for the media to tell them for whom to vote. They the “moderates” of little will or direction their only ambition to be thought of sweetly by the powers that be.

    There are far more scattered groups on the right; single issue voters, Conservatives, Libertarians, small businessmen and iconoclasts. These numbers are the people for whom the Republicans should be looking. These people are the greatest part of the supposed GOP “Base”. These are the greatest bulk of the 40 to 45% of the electorate.

    Election after election, the Establishment Republicans sucker those folks into voting for the least evil statist. The least objectionable, least likely to attract attention candidate. The candidate who won’t scare babies, or the Elites.

    Wilke, Dewey, Eisenhower (who was a war hero so different, but still very mushy), Nixon, Ford ( – whose VP was Rochefeller!!!) , Bush I, Dole (who was a dual mess with Ford), Bush II (who at least maintained some conservatism), McCain… what a line up of MODERATES… and one was the first president to resign in disgrace.

    Please… we have had enough of serving the lie, being the dupe… getting played for a fool… being a sucker… being the mark in a con…

    Not doing it, anymore.

    Romney is a Liberal Democrat. I refuse to vote for Democrats, and I don’t care if he slaps a cheap magnetic R over the D, when the door slams I guarantee that the R pops off…

    A Romney presidency will see massive tax increases (VAT and Fees to start) to be followed by bows in the second half of the term to the Democrat House and Senate. Romney’s election means no repeal of Obamacare. It means no regulatory relief of any measure. There will be no shrinking of the federal government, and no abatement of the Gay Rights agenda… He will nominate David Souters to the Courts, and do as his Democrat Elite masters tell him.

    Please see John Hawkin’s current essay in Townhall.
    http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2012/01/17/five_ways_conservatives_will_have_to_sell_their_souls_if_romney_wins

    If Romney is nominated, the Republican Party will cease to exist. It will fly apart fast if he loses, and only slightly delayed if he eeks out a win.

    For another clue… please note that Her Royal Heinieness Countess of Botox and keeper of the flame of iodine hair Nancy Pelosi wants to face Romney.

    Sorry, either we fight this… and refuse to put Romney on the ticket, or we lose… no matter who wins the election in 2012.

    I will not vote for Romney. EVER, I will not fall on my own sword… and I will not cut my own throat.

    -TMF

    • to one is asking you to cut your own throat.MF.

      get help.

      • Mighty, your second paragraph is 100% spot on.

    • With all due respect M.F., how can you see so much of the forest but miss the trees right in front of you?

      Life and people aren’t just black and white, democrat or republican.

      Yes, the ‘middle’ is partially made up of those you mentioned, which compose perhaps 50% of that ‘middle’.

      The majority of the other part of that half (35%) are uninterested in politics, pay at best cursory attention to the issues and vote according to how they unconsciously feel about the man/party, last in power.

      A minority of the other half (15%) are interested and informed about the issues but reject allegiance to either party. Seeing that each party is partially right and partially wrong…and buying neither sides ‘solution’, which simply don’t ‘add-up’ because neither side will admit that the other side has any valid points at all.

      While seeing also that neither side is interested in considering John Stuart Mills axiom; “In all intellectual debates, both sides tend to be correct in what they affirm, and wrong in what they deny.”

      The days of the Northeastern Establishment dominating the Republican Party are long past my friend.

      The scattered groups on the right to which you refer; the “single issue voters, Conservatives, Libertarians, small businessmen and iconoclasts” are special interest groups who frequently disagree, such as Evangelical Conservatives and Libertarians. Appealing to both as you suggest requires a politician speak out of both sides of their mouth.

      “Election after election, the Establishment Republicans sucker those folks into voting for the least evil statist”

      Yes, this is true; see Can Republicans Govern?
      (Not unless they change The Narrative)
      for a great perspective on one of the primary problems facing Conservatives.

      For a variety of pragmatic reasons, this simply isn’t an election in which a principled Conservative can win. As, for the critical middle who you disparage but who, in any close election, chose the winner… This election is about; “It’s about the economy stupid!”

      While too many Americans still buy into the dem’s memes.

      I like Hawkins and he has some good points. That said, anyone who thinks that Santorum is more electable than Romney is out of touch with the public pulse.

      But Hawkins disagrees with you; “the GOP may end up choosing a candidate [Romney] who’s one part Charlie Crist and one part John Kerry as our nominee. If that’s the case, conservatives should certainly vote for him over Obama. After all, Mitt Romney will undoubtedly often do the wrong thing if he becomes President, but Barack Obama will almost always fail the country. So Romney would definitely be the lesser of two evils.”

      We all know that you have “to pick your battles” in winning a war. BR below may well be right, that only Obama’s excess in a second term may be enough to awaken the public. The question of course is if the patient can survive the cure.

      • GB:

        1. Anybody is more electable than Obama, if, as my sainted mother used to tell her RINO loving sister, “…he stands for something Jo!” Romney stands for exactly nothing, or anything or whatever… well Romney stands for Romney, I suppose. That is unacceptable. No equivocation is going to make things better. Electability is the fundamental lie of elites that perpetuates the con.

        2. I have to disagree on your assessment of the Establishment’s control level in the GOP. I spent many years on my local county committee, most recently my eldest son and I were Cuccinelli delegates to the state nominating convention. I know all the old bulls, and quite a few national level polls whose names I will not drop because it is not respectful of the casual acquaintance for reasons other than politics.

        The Establishment/Elite runs the GOP. It owns the rules, the levers of power, the donors, and the real money behind the actual exercise of that control. In Republican politics money is everything. He who controls the flow of donations gets the access, the influence, and the say. It is a straight up pay for play operation. The Democrats have a slightly different power structure where money is important, but influence is also earned with shoe leather burned, organizing performed, and loyalty demonstrated… it is why the GOP keeps getting beaten on critical issues.

        And that leads to the last point.

        3. There is no cohesion in the GOP coalition because there is no effective unifying leader that can knit all of the various factions together. Reagan only got a bare majority of them rowing in the same direction and was continually losing a few here and there as governing created irritation. Romney is less of a leader than anyone in the race (save the RuPaul loon – who’s a case all his own…)

        The truth is that Romney is not a Republican. To vote for him is to vote for eternal irritation. He will not govern from the right, center-right, or even center. He will be true to his basic Liberal nature and govern from the left of center. He does not have the strength, character, or rhetorical skills to lead a charge to overturn the lurch to the left. He does not even have the wherewithal to slow its momentum and hold it in stasis while we wait for more effective leadership.

        What will happen, is that he will do exactly what the Democrats want him to do.

        He failed as the governor of a small densely populated state. If he had the courage to run again, he’d have been beaten badly, which would have ended his greater ambition… the next run at the Presidency…. He governed that state from the hard left. He fought for nothing, save Romneycare. His budget cuts were money shuffling to massive fee increases (slapping phony labels on things again…). Now, Romneycare is failing. It is choking to death on bloated bureaucracy, rationing, massive cost increases, and is about to bankrupt the state.

        I find his sly little dodge about Romneycare to be the most odious of all things that he has ever said. In defending the indefensible, he was bragging about how everything was fine, and there were “incentives” built into it to make the mandate work… yeah right, incentives… Government vouchers (tax payer money), government bureaucracy to ration care and heavy fines to those who objected by refusing to buy into the fraud. Those are Romney’s incentives..

        As to your middle… well that was all invented by the Elites… all of the data comes from the Elites… and it all benefits them. To buy off on the lie is understandable.. it has been repeated for generations. It is now swallowed whole, just like the like that Fascism was right wing, and FDR cured the Great Depression.

        The light will dawn, but it will as a revelation as the entire edifice crashes to the bottom of the abyss.

        I did a parachute jump once… the old pros who were skydivers with many jumps in their logs, told me that there is this point where you are falling and you suddenly don’t feel like you are falling… you feel weightless and free…

        The problem is that then you have to realize that you are falling and need to pull the ripcord, if you wait too long to realize your true condition, the ground rush will paralyze you before you hit.

        A vote for Romney is a vote to succumb to the ground rush. I’d rather fight for the reserve.. thank you.

        No Romney. Elect him, and hit the ground anyway.

        -TMF

        • Oh… just one note… The “Businessman” gig… yeah. right… Businessman..

          “You’ve got to know the territory…” right..

          Herbert Hoover was a very successful Moderate Businessman. I didn’t mention him in the parade of mushy moderates.. I started with Wilke.. I should have highlighted old Technocrat, Businessman Herbert Hoover… who ended up serving FDR ably.

          No more “businessmen”, please.

        • It appears that you confuse Romney’s RINO inclinations with Obama’s determination to “fundamentally transform America”, which is why Hawkins and I disagree with you. And by saying that, I do not mean to discount nor dispute your highly valid point that Romney in office will only slow down, perhaps but slightly, America’s seduction by the left.

          You confuse the Elite’s real influence with domination.They cannot force the public to vote in primaries as they may wish, only try to influence their thinking. Remember, Bush senior lost the nomination to Reagan, even though Bush was the Eastern establishment choice. Nor was Bush II their choice. You appear to be “living in the past” relying on old assessments, that haven’t kept up with social dynamics long established.

          There is less cohesion in the GOP coalition because some people place special interests above social cohesion.

          Reagan was an effective unifying leader but even he only got a bare majority of factions rowing in the same direction…

          We do agree that Romney represents a slow slide (at best) to the left. I simply think that he’s decidedly better than Obama. Romney can be a ‘holding action’, since the ‘middle’, which I still believe you erroneously characterize, has still not ‘awoken’ to the left’s manipulations.

          A leader can only lead but a short distance in front of his followers, if he gets too far out in front, they lose sight of him.

          It’s obvious we’ll have to agree to disagree as to analysis and strategy, more importantly we do agree as to basic principles.

          • GB, no I wish you could be correct on this one because we rarely disagree, but no I am not confused.

            Big Businessmen generally make poor political leaders, they are too used to getting what they want, and often end up making things worse, not better. Generals also have a poor track record for very similar reasons.

            As to Romney… I have said it before and I will say it again…

            Romney is a Liberal Democrat. If he is elected he will revert to form which is a Statist Liberal.

            If you want to see it in its full form, please read:

            http://cdn2.dailycaller.com/2012/01/McCain-2008-Oppo-File-on-Romney.pdf

            It is accurate, and from the experience of seeing more than a few opposition research reports in my life… (whether or not it is actually a McCain 2008 Campaign product) it speaks more than volumes…

            It says that Romney is not who he says he is (I will refrain from the label to make sure that JE is spared any undo reaction…) He fights dirty, and he does it so that his hair isn’t mussed and his tasseled loafers needn’t be touched up.

            Last, yes we do agree on basic principles, and hopefully by the end of this primary process we won’t have to face your decision, or mine.

            r/TMF

        • Yeah. It’s all a big conspiracy between the “elites” and the MSM to cheat the American people.

          Might I suggest you apply to the UN for a team of international observers to monitor the Republican primaries because it just couldn’t be possible that good honest Republican voters are voting according to the announced results. (I could swear that I saw Jay Leno sneaking into one of the booths and substituting the ballot boxes)

  7. I made up my mind last August that I wouldn’t vote for Romney – not in the primary, and not in November. There are plenty of third parties to pick from. Given Obama’s endorsement of a fast expanding welfare state, the tipping point on no more lenders for the national debt is pretty sure to hit during the next four years, so it’s just as well that the whole thing crashes during a socialist administration.

  8. What’s the point of all this? Why fight to prolong the inevitable descent into barbarism? I want to see it happen with my own eyes during my lifetime. Let the elites, which include both the Dems and GOP, implement every bizarre scheme that they can come up with to entrench themselves in power and insulate their banker allies from harm. Only when the general population is reduced to eating SNAP cabbage and bad cheese washed down with PBR while they watch the NFL playoffs will anything change. Unfortunately, unlike the Romans, who sent their unsatisfactory emperors to another dimension, ours spend a couple of years setting things up for a future as millionaires, protected by a praetorian guard of their own while their elected successors follow a similar route, all with no real responsibility. Of course, we peasants will enjoy the crash the least but we’re not going to be able to avoid it in any case.

    • You may well be right about our inevitable descent into barbarism Chuck. When grown men place their survival ahead of women and children… as happened in the recent grounding of that Italian cruise ship, civilization’s veneer is slipping.

      However, before the French peasants stormed the Bastille, they endured centuries of ‘snap cabbage and bad cheese’…and, the excessive brutality of the aftermath of the French revolution was so horrific it soured even a firebrand like Patrick Henry’s stomach.

      • The French revolutionaries were led by what is termed today “liberal socialists”. That is what is now typical intolerant liberal behavior if you ask me.

        “Off wid their ‘eads…”
        🙂

        rafa

  9. Come on, guys and ladies…

    We are all liberals now…

    Reverse an 80 years old political attitude of constantly increasing the power of government? What makes anyone think that this is even possible anytime in the near future? Attitudes change generationally.

    Forgetting for a second all those millions of new entries by both legal and illegal immigrants, in those 80 years there were more than a couple of generations of newly minted Americans born and brought into the national melle. Every one of those generational Americans will be increasingly vulnerable to being morphed and manipulated into our puppet masters attitude of choice.

    After all that time and after four or five generations the endoctrination by the education system and by the MSM promoting these contrived cultural changes, it all begins to take serious hold. Since all of that is actually meant to affect the attitudes of the nation and since those efforts are always being augmented by our purposedly executed decentralization of culture, our suicidal non-mandatory style of “inclusiveness” and our constant watering down of basic core moral and ethical concepts, it eventually results in rendering us supine to…well…to making a pityfully comical choice between a) Romney and b) Obama which is kind of tantamount to discussing the inevitable probability of being raped in terms of frequency or chosing which rapist by their expected degree of expertise or level of brutality.

    But, whomever fights for and gets the power, change the attitude in Washington…? Why?

    And, importantly, what makes us expect that the politicians weilding the power will want to dimish that power in order to work themselves into a lower level of consequentiality?

    rafa

  10. 1. Anyone who thinks that driving is an optional activity for most Americans is living on another planet. It isn’t. Yet you seem to accept the necessity to force drivers to carry 3rd party insurance. Inconsistent, methinks.

    2. Get a grip. Purchase mandates are only an issue of principle if you are incapable of distinguishing prejudice from principle. PMs are merely another way of paying for the healthcare everyone gets anyway. If you are looking for a real example of intrusive government you need look no further than our increasingly intrusive security state and its burgeoning priesthood – the securitocracy.

    3. Romneycare doesn’t pit citizen against citizen. Leave us citizens out of your argument. What you really mean is that you resent other folks getting even a pale version of the socialized healthcare you enjoy. I don’t share your resentment.

    4. Your reference to rent-sekers seems to imply that you are extending the definition of this term to include anyone who would receive subsidized health insurance. Calm down. Nothing in Romney/Obamacare gives anyone anything approaching the level of tax-subsidized rent that you and other public-service rentiers enjoy.

    5. Your rant against the EPA is rather “unstructured”, lets say. Presumably you decided that once you got going you couldn’t resist the temptation to throw in the kitchen sink. But it doesn’t add up. Communist Eastern Europe was devoid of environmental regulation (They are still cleaning up the mess)West Germany was (and is) one of the most environmentally regulated nations on the planet. Guess which one was (and is) the economic powerhouse.

    6. You will be delighted to learn that the availability of Romney/Obamacare does not interfere in any way with your right to get AIDS, or an STD, or eat yourself to death, or, even, throw yourself under a bus. On the other hand, the AMA and various governmment agencies will likewise remain free to provide you with the information on how you might avoid all of the above if you wish to listen.

    7. The government is not pitting citizen against citizen. Certain small groups of ideologues, presumably motivated by resentment, or even hatred of certain of their fellow Americans, are.

    8. We are a democracy. The people (subject to the Constitution as interpreted by courts – not you) decide what size shoes government should wear. Registered Republicans are (I presume) exercising their primary choices accordingly. This choice seems not to be in accordance with your views. It seems your views aren’t even representative of your fellow Republicans. Tough. That’s democracy.

    9. Your order of preference of Republican primary candidates is inversely proportionate to their electability. Even worse, having won the Republican nomination the successful candidate will have to move towards the center if he wishes to win a plurality on the national electorate, and if successful will govern by consensus on behalf of all the people. This is what Ronald Reagan did in real life (as distinct from the mythology of people who propound doctrines a million miles to the right of the Gipper)

    10. It is the inability of the current do-nothing Republican-dominated House to appreciate something that most Americans know in their hearts – that consensus (not confrontation (or, “offence”, as you term it) is the rock on which our democracy is grounded – that has it languishing at about 25% approval rates in the polls (Far more unpopular than the President). If you’re hankering after a winner-takes-all system of government in which your ideological preferences would be realized you are living in the wrong country.

    11. You frequently invoke the “Founders” in support of your odd views. I suppose it’s because they, regrettably, are in no position to disagree with you. However, I cannot help feeling that they would have turned in their graves at the growing body of police and security powers that are ever further eroding our freedoms. The founders left a framework for consensual government in the Constitution. They had a more subtle notion of “limited” government than you. However, the white land-owners who dominated the early agrarian nation and wrote the Constitution can hardly have anticipated the huge industrial democracy we now inhabit, or its prerequisites.

    • Paulite, OTHER than the acknowledged and obvious intrusiveness of the TSA, and the absurd inconvenience of having to show ID to buy things like Sudafed, have you personally experienced any instance in which your civil rights, or even your concept of privacy, were violated by the increasingly invasive security powers of government that you criticize?

      • As an elderly, middleclass, beardless, white person with an anglo-saxon name who doesen’t use Sudafed the only way in which these people are likely to effect me is when I have to pay for them out of my salary and pension.

      • The correct answer is no. Although Paul should probably pay a whining tax, and some penalty for no not being able to latch on to a fact every now and then.
        I believe un-employed engineers would term this as a low co-efficient of enertial prima facie positive matter.

    • “8. We are a democracy. The people (subject to the Constitution as interpreted by courts – not you) decide what size shoes government should wear.”

      Ain’t I one of the “people”? In a democracy, bizarre, unworkable that it is, there’s a vote among citizens that makes decisions. The US is no kind of a democracy, it’s a republic, where degenerates like Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, Henry Waxman, Patty Murray et al, collude to spend the wealth of future generations in exchange for today’s luxury and power. The Constitution has nothing to do with it, as the belle of Castro Street says, “Are you kidding?” Written in the vernacular, easily understood by any English-speaking person, it doesn’t require a squad of super-lawyers and their sycophantic clerks to tell the peasants what it means, unless, of course, somebody wants it to mean something else. It depends on what the meaning of “is” is.

      • sorry chuck but them thar deeeegenerates don’t get to make those spending decisions less’n a whole lot of real live here-and-now Mericans moral as you n me get up and vote that authority into the hands of those dirty collusivistas.

      • Have you read Edmund Burke’s “Reflections on the Revolution in France”? In it he stated:

        “The French had shown themselves the ablest architects of ruin that had hitherto existed in the world. In that very short space of time they had completely pulled down to the ground, their monarchy; their church; their nobility; their law; their revenue; their army; their navy; their commerce; their arts; and their manufactures…there was a danger of an imitation of the excesses of an irrational, unprincipled, proscribing, confiscating, plundering, ferocious, bloody and tyrannical democracy…in religion the danger of their example is no longer from intolerance, but from Atheism; a foul, unnatural vice, foe to all the dignity and consolation of mankind; which seems in France, for a long time, to have been embodied into a faction, accredited, and almost avowed”.

        Written in 1790. Sound familiar?

        • No. It doesn’t sound familiar, actually…..

        • I probably haven’t read it since it was first issued, but vaguely recall it as a dated and overly broad of a reaction to Lafeyette’s Declaration of the Rights of Man.

          perhaps you might tease out some of the more worthwhile bits for our amusement and enlightenment….

          the equation of atheism with tyranny is, of course, not worthwhile

  11. This is an important announcement. Brent Venables to Clemson as DC. $300,000 raise. Mike back in. Larger linebackers will start to arrive. Larger, more physical safeties will appear. DT’s will start to mush OL for the nice gaps for linebackers.
    In short: Two seasons Full Metal Jacket Defense once again.


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