Thursday, May 14, 2009

Problem With The Paradigm...

So in all this alleged GOP "soul searching", so gleefully reported by the media, we have Dick Cheney saying
"I don’t think the party ought to move dramatically to the left, for example, in order to try to redefine its base."
which yet again points out the limitations of the traditional "left/right" shibboleths. From where I'm sitting, the GOP has moved too far to the left for the last fifteen or more years. With the exception of the lies and broken promises of the "Contract With America", the GOP has consistently countered the Democrats' "Big Government" platform with their own "Big Government with a side order of Jesus" one.

The GOP wouldn't be in this position if they hadn't turned into Democrats Against Flag Burning (But In Favor Of Tanks.)

Seriously, spend like drunken sailors, expand existing government agencies while creating whole new ones of dubious Constitutionality, meddle in traditionally Democrat minefields like education and Medicare, and it doesn't matter how you rearrange the stem cell and gay marriage deck chairs on the USS Pachyderm, your ship is going down.

But before all you loyal donkeys out there get too giddy with your Gatorade dousings, ponder this: A rudderless GOP tendered up the lamest candidate imaginable, with the looks of Amonhotep III, a completely demagnetized policy needle, and all the public speaking skills of Marcel Marceau, and even with the most charismatic presidential candidate to make it to the finals since 1984, you still only got 52% of the vote. Barry should have beat McCain like a drum on personality alone, so I wouldn't be too quick to count the GOP out; after all, wasn't it just eight years ago that the Donks were pronounced DOA?


Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

"Barry should have beat McCain like a drum"I was thinking "like a rented mule", but that's just a stylistic point :)

Nicely put.

milton f said...

Ain't a dimes worth of difference between McCain and Obamama in policy.

Except we could be watching sweet Sarah on CNN every day.

Tam said...

That's pretty much what I said: Given the lack of meaningful differences between the two, the pretty one with the ready smile should have totally pwnt the codger. Instead it was a 4% squeaker in the popular vote.

That makes it awfully risky to act like you have a mandate.

Weer'd Beard said...

Not to mention the only "Change" we've seen is Barry trumping Bush's unchecked spending.

That's GOTTA sting!

Scott said...

That was a simple, to the point and somewhat brilliant description of the political landscape. I could not have said it any better, but I would have added a few four letter descriptive words for color, to signal my frustration with the average moron on the street.

As a side note, take a look at what Captain Capitalism wrote recently "What if people paid half the amount of attention to government than they do sports?"

"Zack" said...

Note to Republicans: Drop any idea of Jeb Bush being a candidate.

My choice has been, and will be, Condi Rice, and the Republican Party acts like she does not exist.

Rick R. said...

Actually, Dr. Rice has been saying for about six years now that she has no intention of running, or even accepting a floor nimination, for POTUS or VPOTUS.

Hell, I suggested that Bush was going to do a British style "cabinet shuffle" in 2004 and stick Cheney as NSA, and Dr. Rice as VP.

She simply doesn't want to have teh headaches of the office. After seeing her inability to rein in the entrenched Tranzis (transnational Euroweenies) at the State Department, I'm not sure she has the executive mindset, either. Unfortunately, she seems a lot better at being a "Chief of Staff" type than a "Chief of State".

the pawnbroker said...

that was beautiful right there, tam...succinct, pointy, and funny as hell.

jeb bush? just bo with a trunk.

as for condi, too much shrub to shed.

no chance for sarah, either...she hooked up with the wrong leading man, and now she's writing a book. i loved her, but i'm over her.

where have you gone, ronnie? i know your spirit lives on, we need you to get channeling now!


Bram said...

I watched the debates last fall in dismay. Obama kept pitching what would have been meatballs for Reagan to hit out of the park - spending, and programs, and taxes, and more government, with more spending. Ronnie would have crushed him like a bug.

Instead there was this old liberal geezer spewing slightly different plans for more government.

The Raving Prophet said...

I still remember a Dilbert cartoon from late '91 or early '92. Dogbert was explaining how he was running for office not as a Democrat, but as a Communist "Because I want to have a chance." Everybody thought the Democrats were toast, then they won the White House and kept it for eight years (and might have gone more had they come up with somebody better than Gore in '00).

The Republicans have to decide just how long they'll keep with the Democrat light platforming- I don't have a lot of hope they'll ditch it soon (what with the media and talking heads endorsing it and all). When the only noticeable parts of the party are the big government tendencies and those overly concerned with the bedroom activities of others, it is going to struggle to find traction. Still, though, I can't help but wonder if somebody is going to come out of the bleachers to re-energize things- if it happens, we won't see it for at least another couple years.

Rabbit said...

John Bolton.

Can we just clone him for VP, too?

Cheney's heart (allegedly, he has one, contrary to what they all say on Daily Kos) is too much of an issue to run him for another high office. Not that I have a problem with him running...unlike everyone else with an R by their name, lately he's the only one showing to have a set and a spine.


Anonymous said...

"GOP has moved too far to the left for the last fifteen or more years"

I'd say more like 150 years, but what's an order of magnitude between friends? -- Lyle

Tam said...

Baby steps, Lyle, baby steps.

Until then, we could wire up Goldwater's casket and take the entire state of Arizona off the grid...

Anonymous said...

Fear, did it matter who was elected last year? I don't think so. Things would not be so different right now in any event. Stimulus packages started with George Bush, and even Dick Cheney was yelling at the GOP legislature to get with the program. Barry O. hasn't done anything substantively different YET from the old guard on foreign policy, apart from acting like he cares what someone else thinks. Turning the ship around is going to require a LOT of energy.

Rabbit said...

I'm strangely comfortable with the concept of Zombie Goldwater and Zombie Reagan, Tam.


wv=cratess: how they ship in brains to pacify Zombie Goldware and Zombie Reagan.

Billll said...

The procedure, every 4 years, is for the Donks to pick some moonbat that no sane person would vote for, and the Reps try to find some over-the-hill apparatchik, dull and boring enough to lose to him.

Sometimes the Donks can't find anyone crazy enough, and they win. Sometimes the Reps can't find someone boring enough, and they win.

It seems to be how it works.

Crucis said...

I like Eave Ramsey's version of the left/right debate. Draw a line, label the one end "Tyranny" and label the other as "Anarchy."

Then choose where between the two you would be. Most conservatives would line up somewhere in the half towards Anarchy, while the dems and socialists would be on the opposite end.

Makes much more sense to me.

Ed Foster said...

So I'm writing this letter to the Republican National Chairman, covering most of the same ground. Can I quote both yourself (grovel, grovel), and one or two of those commenting, with attribution?

I'm serious here. Ex Daughter-In-Law works for a "Conservative" Washington think tank, and I have at least a chance of getting the missive read.

Really, it's a situation of nudge then into some semblance of conservative change, or get ready for the more or less inevitable collapse or civil war that ensues.

Yu rite gud lady, and I think your stuff would add a bit of leverage and humor. Please?

Bobby Nations said...

One quibble on the Contract with America. IIRC, Gingrinch and company passed most of the planks of that contract out of the House with some of them even making it past the Senate gauntlet and getting enacted into law. The chief one being Welfare reform, which even Clinton eventually signed. All told, the Contract with America represents a promise kept. Too bad the Senate GOP didn't try the same gambit, but no one bats a thousand in this game.

theirritablearchitect said...

"I would have added a few four letter descriptive words for color, to signal my frustration with the average moron on the street...."

And that's the problem, right there, the average moron on the street.

Instead of merely letting those morons off the hook next time you see them publicly roaming, please direct your expletives toward them. They're usually easy to spot, driving Swedish cars, or that godawful Prius, proudly displaying bumper stickers in support of the Lightworker.

His minions piss me off more than he does.

Hunsdon said...

See, it's easy for me. I hate and despise Obama roughly the same amount I hated and despised George W. Bush. Did George W. do ANYTHING that could remotely be called conservative? I've had people reference the AWB. Yeah, right. Didn't he say he'd sign it if it came to his desk? Didn't he shift the heavy lifting of killing it over to Lott in the Senate?

Mass immigration, plans for an amnesty, check that, amnesty is a hater's word, umm, let's see here, legalization, regularization, "bringing them out of the shadows." Community Reinvestment Act, doing away with redlining, turning on the taps.

Then there's the whole Afghanistan and Iraq thing, or are those two things? Saddam hit New York! Yeah, right, with his WMD! How's that working out for us? Is Iraq turning into Indiana yet? (No, because Iraq still has less gun control!)

And Afghanistan! (I guess they do count as two things, after all.) Sometimes having read a tiny little bit of history can be depressing. Like a hot potato, Afghanistan is easy to seize, but hard to hold. I remember getting the chuckles back in the day about the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, because it was so obvious that it "wannae gonna work, laddies." Cooper's old story about the bus stop, the tank, and the precision rifle fire taking out the tank commander, that just made me happy.

As for Barry, he's just picking up the tools the Dubster brought out and polished for him. Waterboarding? Nah, not torture, not when WE do it anyway. Just good clean fun, after all! Why, it's like giving them a bath, pretty much. From the inside out, of course, but there you go, gotta start somewhere.

As for Cheney, I still think the man is a sleeper agent for Iran. Hmm, Iraq? Shia majority state, under Sunni minority rule? Located next door to the one Shia run, Shia majority state in the entire Middle East? Anyone remember where SCIRI hid out, during the Saddam era? Nah, that's all ancient history.

But "Teh Surge" sure worked. Boy howdy. Ask those Awakening boys how they feel about it now that the Shia hammer is coming down on them. OOPSIES!

As for what I would have done about Afghanistan, "punitive expedition" sums it up nicely. Fly in, break up their stuff, last guy to get on the helicopter says, "I'm going to fly back to North Carolina for some Jack Daniels and a huge pulled pork BBQ, and then have sex with my blonde wife, who'll be wearing a bikini. You really don't want to make us come back."

Continue believing in the left/right divide, folks. Cheer for your home team. Just remember that "The Dems are bad and evil, and the Republicans good and noble" (or vice versa, if that's how you swing). Both parties are populated by controlling statist goons who never met a liberty they wouldn't love to snuff out. Both parties are populated by power hungry controllers who don't believe a damn thing, except that they memorized the platitudes of the crowd they fell in with, and mouth them to get, keep and advance their power.

Maybe liberty isn't dead in America, but it's strapped to the gurney and the IV is already in place, and the morphine is steadily flowing into its veins, and the phrase "lethal injection" really ought to be rejiggered to be more compassionately conservative, or to express more hopes and changies.

Enjoy your last tastes of freedom, lads and lassies, because to quote Hicks from Aliens, We're on an express elevator to Hell, going down!

"A Republic, madam, if you can keep it." Indeed.

Tam said...

Wow... it's... it's like the scales have fallen from my eyes!

You... you... mean that the GOP is full of pettifogging statist bureaucrats, too?

I... I... should write a post about that!

[/massive dose of sarcasm]

the pawnbroker said...

cossack: "Both parties are populated by controlling statist goons who never met a liberty they wouldn't love to snuff out. Both parties are populated by power hungry controllers who don't believe a damn thing..."

well, maybe...the parties are definitely being "operated" by folks like that, if not wholly populated.

but i see enough of the resistance in comments here and in real life to know that America is not.

that elevator is equipped with brakes; we just gotta find the lever and a decent "operator" before we make that last hard stop in the basement.


Kristopher said...


You mean that the State is full of Statists?


Anonymous said...

Let's not impune the reputation of drunken sailors. They at least waste their OWN money.

Hunsdon said...


No ma'am! At the risk of sounding like I'm butt snorkeling here, I've always thought you had a really good grasp of the ludicrousness of our polity. That (and your snark) is why I keep on coming back.

But there's a lot of true believers out there, who conflate America with God with the GOP with being a gun nut, preferably but not necessarily white, and who have handed their thinky-tubes over to Sean Hannity and think that killin' ragheads is doin' Jesus' OWN WORK (because He needs OUR HELP, doncherknow).

What can I say? It was a rough morning.

pawnbroker: Yeah, I should have made it more clear, I meant the "elected (ha ha) representatives (ha ha ha HA HA HA HA HA)" who "represent" (ha) us in our federal democratic republic. I think both parties are primarily supported by decent Americans who have been led astray by smooth talking magicians, who spin abstruse and bizarre theories that result in the US slowly circling the toilet bowl.

Tam said...

Thank you.

I'd hoped you'd taken that with the big implied winkie smiley that is implied with nearly everything I post here.

I didn't think you'd misinterpret it in some thin-skinned fashion, but I worried. Written snark is a lot harder to deliver in good humor than the verbal kind... :o