Sunday, July 31, 2011

Bad Politics Kills Good Ideas

Reason without Passion is heartless.  Passion without Reason is brainless

I greatly respect George Will and Charles Krauthammer.  Some hotheads on the right get upset with these men from time to time, but they provide the intellectual wellspring of modern American conservatism (although Krauthammer is not a conservative, strictly speaking, he is a brilliant tactician for our side).

Patience is a Virtue

George Will reminds us how much ground the tea party has won in only a few short years, and he cheers these gains.  The Democrats have gone from the billowy expansiveness of Obama's Hope and Change ever expanding government, to now arguing over what and how much to cut.  Thanks to the tea party, we have reframed the debate and moved it onto our turf.

Having said that, Will issues a caution:
Will, a student of Burke, went on to say, “It really is fanciful to believe that the regulatory welfare state that has been built over 80 years can be substantially deconstructed in August over a debt ceiling vote. It’s going to take a little longer than that.”

“We ought to pocket these gains and prepare for the next fight – and to understand, nothing fundamentally will be changed until we change the president who is determined to veto fundamental change,” Will added. (Wehner - Tea Party Should Listen to George Will)
If that doesn't convince you, please continue reading.  Dr. Krauthammer has some words of wisdom as well:
I have every sympathy with the conservative counterrevolutionaries. Their containment of the Obama experiment has been remarkable. But reversal — rollback, in Cold War parlance — is simply not achievable until conservatives receive a mandate to govern from the White House.

  [...]they don’t have the Senate, they don’t have the White House. And under our constitutional system, you cannot govern from one house alone.(NRO-Krauthammer)
Do the Math:  We Can't Fix it all in one Bite

Aside from the political realities, we also hit a wall of math.  Obama is running annual deficits of $1.5 trillion, and the debt is over $14 trillion.  Cut all federal spending, everything, and fire every government worker and shutter every department, zeroing out these $3.7 trillion annual budgets, and it would still take over a decade to wipe out the debt. 

Another factor:  A present congresses cannot tie the hands of future ones.  Harry Reid can promise to cut one million bajillion over the next ten year all he wants, but spending is voted on year to year.  The new congress elected in 2012 will thumb its nose at such promises, since it is legally under no obligation whatsoever to fulfill them.

Add to this the fact that real people are dependent on government programs, hooked like junkies thanks to years of progressive predations that stripped them of the will and the means to care for themselves.  This cannot be fixed overnight.
"Don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes"
The GOP and tea partiers need to realize this debt ceiling fight is DC Kabuki.  It won't solve anything.  Indeed, raising the debt ceiling hastens our shambolic stagger into the pit of financial penury.  Ever known anyone or any nation to spend itself to prosperity?

The GOP need to avoid immediate draconian cuts that will be sensationalized by the Democratic party propagandists in the news media.  Smile, care, look intelligent and grown-up, and get this damned thing over with so we can shine the spotlight on the disaster scene that Obamanomics has wrought.  Ask Obama every day where the jobs are, and continue explaining to the American people how we cannot continue spending like this.

This opens a path to 2012 victory, and a GOP senate and GOP president can join with a GOP house to finally tame the government beast.  If they don't, I will be joining the passionate millions of tea partiers storming the capitol with torches and pitchforks.


LD Jackson said...

As conservatives facing an uphill battle, we would do well to listen to the advice in this post. As much as we would all like to take Washington, D.C. by storm and force the liberals to change their ways, that isn't possible. We need to get what positive results we can get and move forward to 2012 and beyond. Anything else is just fantasy, for the moment.

Country Thinker said...

Albert Brooks had a great editorial in yesterday's WSJ in which he argues that the fight needs to includes strong moral arguments - something only liberals are doing in the present day ("firness," etc.). This is a war for liberty, and each of these points are battles. The war cannot be won in a day, but a battle can.

Bunkerville said...

I couldn't agree with you more. Our fighting him will only help him in 2012. By letting him run the country off the rail for another year only helps us take back the castle.

Always On Watch said...

I read both of these men's columns on a regular basis.

Krauhammer's assessment is spot on:

But reversal — rollback, in Cold War parlance — is simply not achievable until conservatives receive a mandate to govern from the White House.

I hope that conservatives understand that truth and don't keep their heads in the clouds and thinking that the TPM candidates elected in 2010 can work miracles on Capitol Hill.

Mark Adams said...

These points both men present were already known after 2010. The TPP knew this back then, but seem to have forgotten, that nothing they want in any House legislation is not going to get passed by this Senate, nor inked by this president. And that more needs to be done come 2012.
But this says it all (and is the message I have been reminding them of) "The Democrats have gone from the billowy expansiveness of Obama's Hope and Change ever expanding government, to now arguing over what and how much to cut."
Thats one hell of an achievement, thus far, my this movement.

Silverfiddle said...

Indeed it is, Mark. I just hope the more hot-blooded in our camp can see that and realize we need to be patient and keep our powder dry.

I myself am a hothead, so I know where they are coming from. We've got to be patient, this may be our last chance before becoming Argentina.

Anonymous said...

Certainly with control of only the House the genuine conservatives who were sent to Washington in the last congressional election have no realistic hope of transforming the corrupt system in one term much less in one battle over one issue. However, if these "Tea Party Freshman" don't hold their ground, and instead appear to be caving -- i.e. compromising with the devil -- those who put them in office are likely to get disgusted, and the Tea Party Movement will die aborning.

Once elected, sincere, idealistic men and women are almost immediately co-opted, then corrupted by the Establishment and are soon persuaded to "go along to get along."

When the Republicans last were in power and held both houses of congress and the presidency what happened? They acted like Democrats and enthusiastically supported the Marxian-Statist-Control-Freak-Nannycrat agenda. They actually paved the proverbial road and covered it with a red carpet to usher in The Era of Obama, who in truth is only a continuation, albeit vastly accelerated, of policies that have been in place, and have kept strengthening and expanding dictatorial government power since before most of us were born.

If the Nannycrat agenda truly emanates from Satan [a convenient metaphor for all that's wrong and injurious], we should stand firm in the recognition that "no one can compromise with the devil," and proceed accordingly.

"Resist the Devil and he will flee from you."

Those of us who hope to overcome the ill effects of nearly a century of Marxian-Progressive-Statist-Collectivist-quasi-Fascist --- whatever you want to all them -- policies will never do so, unless we take a firm, uncompromising stand against the corrosive effects of the once-creeping, then-striding-trotting-galloping socialism that's been slowly-but-surely destroying all that's left of Western Civilization since the creation of the IRS and the Federal Reserve in 1913.

Rome wasn't built in a day and all that, but it started somewhere with positive, determined effort and was built brick-by-brick over centuries.

Our once-healthy society is being torn down brick-by-brick by determined negative effort. Now that we recognize that truth, why do anything that aids the process?

"Men become heroes, because they do not traffic with inevitables."

If the Founding Fathers had been "realistic," the United States of America would never have come into being.

"Give me liberty, or give me death.

"Live free, or die.""

Do you want to betray that patriotic, moral fervor by capitulating to the tyrannical policies that hold us in thrall?


~ FreeThinke

Silverfiddle said...

So true, FreeThinke.

The only reason I am optimistic that it will be different this time if we elect the GOP is that there are now millions of tea partiers watching their every crafty move.

They get out of line and there will be hell to pay. If the GOP gets the presidency and the senate, it will be their last chance.

Anonymous said...

You're right to say that this won't solve any of our long-term problems, but it's imperative that we stave off the short term problems now.

2012 is going to be very, very interesting. I think that Americans should be very unforgiving because of all this damn brinkmanship, but I know they won't. There aren't enough people to run against these entrenched representatives.

It will be interesting to see what deal is cut in the next couple of days.

Shane Atwell said...

You lost me at 'Will, a student of Burke' i.e. someone who thinks we are naturally subjects, not sovereign individuals. George Will and all the rest of the neocons can go to hell. They've been selling us downriver for decades. Urging nationalistic/altruistic wars abroad and welfare statism at home and caution with regard to any change that might recognize individual rights.

Silverfiddle said...

All well and good, Shane, but that has nothing to do with the subject at hand.

It is a category error fallacy to say that because someone is wrong in one area they are also wrong in another unrelated one.

BTW, George Will has got religion recently on the foreign interventions.

Anonymous said...

This sonnet was penned fourteen years ago in reference to the Clintons‘ Whitewater woes, but I see now that the basic sentiments apply to the way politics is conducted all the time. Proof once more that "The more things change, the more they remain the same.” - FT

Sail On, O Ship of State

What the truth might be no one can find.
Hopeless is the quest on either side
Invested as they are in staying blind
To anything that points to Power denied.
Entrenched in battle lines made to endure,
Weapons drawn and ready to attack.
A motivating force that’s quite impure
Twists logic into seeing white as black.
Examining our leaders’ feet of clay
Removes us from confronting our own flaws,
While they decisive action can delay
On how to rid the Nation’s Face of yaws.
Electing pugilists who throw the fight
Scorches angels’ wings, yet sheds no light.

~ FreeThinke - The Sandpiper, Summer 1997

Ducky's here said...

The Krautzenjammer Kid is way off as usual.

Conservatives have a mandate from the White House to legislate. It's the TeaBagger droolers who are queering the deal.

Anonymous said...

By the way, I apologize for saying"Welcome to Oceana" above.

What I should have said was


Everyone's been very tactful in not calling me on that, but it should be corrected, since my specific reference was to Orwell's 1984.

~ FT

Anonymous said...

Obviously our crisis will tke time to overcome. What saddens me is the Republicans oar alone in recognizing that we have a crisis. We have a crisis no less dangerous than when Japan attcked Pearl Harbor. When that crisis occurred, ideologies were set aside and everyone pretty much pulled together to face that crisis. Obama and the leadership of the Democrats refuse to accept that we are in a crisis worthy of putting their ideology aside for the well being of America. At least that is how I see things today.

Z said...

"The GOP need to avoid immediate draconian cuts that will be sensationalized by the Democratic party propagandists in the news media"

I'm with you...and I'm hoping the TP and GOP can get it together. I'm starting to hear things which seem to point in that direction; 2012 is FAR too important an election to contemplate insider problems losing it for us.

Silverfiddle said...

@ Ducky Conservatives have a mandate from the White House to legislate.


Coequal branches do not issue mandates to one another. Go read the constitution.

Ducky's here said...

Silverfiddle, don't be a pedant. You spout those aphorisms and you sound lame.

Obama has sent out the message that he fully supports a conservative program and will not do anything they object to. This guy been a conservatives dream:

1. Education - Race to the top. Fully supports charter schools and has made himself pretty damn scarce when the teachers union is attacked. Your dream.

2. Foreign policy - Kill as many Muslims as possible. Get out the kneepads when Nuttyahoo comes to town. Make sure to run everything by Israel and Saudi Arabia regarding the response to the Arab spring where unarmed Syrians are being shot down demanding a more open government. We ignore them when they have done more to fight for freedom than any of your military buddies.

3. Patriot Act - Keep the "War on Terror" on high.

4. Immigration - He's deported quanta more than Chucklenuts ever tried to deport.

5. Economy - Larry Summer and the Goldman Sachs cabana boy Timmy Geithner and you call this guy a socialist. You are risible. Obama is a strict corporatist and close to fascism.

6. Entitlements - He's giving the go ahead right now to start gutting. He's done more to strip entitlements in two years than Chucklenuts did in eight.

7. Health Care -- He sure laid down the law on single payer didn't he.

8. Justice Dept. -- He is the only president in history who did not replace the various Federal attornets. Rather he left Chucklenuts' staff IN PLACE. Some socialist.

Now why don't you tell me where he has varied from a conservative program that can be implemented? Anyway when you are ready to demonstrate that you have some clue what is going on in government rather than clinging to some crazy utopian Libertarian sandbox pipe dream let's talk. But don't go pedant on me with this fringe right pretense that you "know the Constitution". You make yourself simplistic and I think your lot brighter than that.

Save the boilerplate for z, give me your best game.

Silverfiddle said...

Ducky: You start from the flawed premise that Bush was a conservative.

Game? What I've written stands.

MK said...

"If they don't, I will be joining the passionate millions of tea partiers storming the capitol with torches and pitchforks."

The smart money.... what little there is left of it is on you folks with pitch forks, guns and everything else getting those fat pieces of crap in DC to change their tune. Even with GOP holding all houses i'm doubtful they'll change things.

I fear the western world is coming to the stage where only throwing a few of these bastards out of multi-storey windows will get the message through.

I hope and pray we don't need to go down that road.

Finntann said...

So Ducky, enlighten us... who would you want to see in the oval office?

Ducky's here said...

Flimflam, I don't believe there is a progressive force in America. There are conservatives and the insane Baggers.

Take the debt ceiling announcement.
Well he announced his solution:
... some minor cuts right now, no revenue increase, raise the debt limit and implement the 12 person super committee.

They return their recommendations in Nov.

Should be something 3 House baggers, 3 Senate baggers, 3 House progressives (thanks Nancy) and three Dem Senators from the following list:

Kent Conrad
Max Baucus
Mary Landrieux
Joe Lieberman
Ben Nelson

I think I would prefer Michele Bachmann in the White House. End the death throes sooner rather than later and hope a progressive movement can rise from the ashes.

Always On Watch said...

Save the boilerplate for z, give me your best game.

This morning, I was talking on the phone with The Merry Widow (as I do nearly every day) and read to her your latest snide comment about Z. I've been telling TMW about many of your other comments to and about Z as well.

TMW asked me to give you the following message (direct quotation, which I wrote down so as to get every word correct): "Ducky, I am extremely disgusted and dismayed by your attack on my sister Z. What has happened to you to cause you to sink into the sewer?"

Even though TMW no longer blogs, she does hear about what's going on in certain blogging circles.

Silverfiddle said...

AOW: Ad Hominem is the last refuge of an intellectually bereft, sour old progressive statist...

Always On Watch said...


Ducky's here said...

AOW, I have always been respectful of MW because I think she is a very decent soul. Politically backward but a very decent person and I understand things are going okay for her and that's good.

I have tried to hold back at your site even though the Muslim dislike is pretty thick. You are complex enough to be worth understanding but I really don't believe you understand what you support.

z is a different creature entirely and I believe she is a complete fraud. A real whitened sepulcher and that's that.
She masks her bigotry real well and marches along to the cadence of drill Sergeant Beck. She promotes an abject liar and filth bag like Breitbart.

"The Mexicans I've met in the service industry are so cute". What can you say about someone who writes that in earnest?

What's going on today? She's all upset that there has been a settlement for minorities who were defrauded by the banks. So she's all up in arms about Jesse Jackson.

No, the mindless American exceptionalism and her ignorant belief that military action is all that stands between her and the burqa is a serious danger and fosters an environment that is close to bringing the nation to collapse.

She may be a decent person but what she believes is vile and disgusting.

Anonymous said...

Indulging in "personalities" has injected moral and intellectual pollution into many-if-not-most of the livelier, more active blogs and websites.

I don't believe our personal opinions about various bloggers and posters who contribute to to these discussions are appropriate.

It's not only distracting, it's boring, and serves no useful purpose.

I would defend to the death your right to say whatever you want to say, but at the same time I thank Almighty God, that I don't have to pay any attention to it.

~ FreeThinke

Ducky's here said...

I don't need some Bagger to defend my rights Freethinker.

Sometimes things should be called by heir name.

Z said...

Free Thinker, thanks very much.

Ducky, for someone who spends as much time at my blog as you have (I believe more than anyone else), you sure have a lot wrong. You know I always told you that you should read the posts before you insult, right?

By the way, Breitbart is a friend and as far as whatever you called him as possible...and, as you once said he should die (I can find that quote if you like), you're not really worthy of any high road here, trust me.

Please link where I said "Mexicans in the service industry are cute".... What I have said is that the Mexicans and Salvadorans and Guatemalans I know are some of the sweetest people I know. If you find that patronizing, that's YOUR PROBLEM.

As for burqas...never happen. And just because you don't understand the threat of islamists isn't my problem, either. I also worry about you in that you actually feel those of us, AOW included, who are fighting the Islamists who carry signs, as in Britain, saying "LEAVE ENGLAND, WE'RE HERE NOW" and worse, don't mean it. WHat do you think they mean? :-)

I won't be reading any absurd response because I don't want you to look even worse and I find it unseemly to argue at Silverfiddle's blog. I only responded because I was told this silly response was here.

YOu are a very, very sad man, Ducky; very hurt and very sad.

I feel very sorry for you, believe it or not.

Silverfiddle said...

Z: You know Andrew Breitbart personally?

That's pretty cool. The man is a modern day conservative hero. He has learned from the left and now uses their tactics against them. He is brilliant.

He is teaching conservatives how to turn in back around on the lefties and shove it in their faces. Our politicians may be failing us, but listening to Breitbart and learning from him could very well save us.

Z said...

Hi, Silverfiddle...
Yes, he's Orson Bean's son-in-law and I'm having lunch over there Friday (Orson's wife Alley is a dear friend of mine); Andrew might be there, probably not.
I've met him only a few times but he knows GeeeZ...kind of nice! I think he's a real hero, too.

Sorry for the silliness with Ducky; the only reason I responded was the line about Andrew and the lie that I've said Mexicans are CUTE :-)
The rest, I've heard before....

thanks for being a stand up guy, Silverfiddle. We need more like you.

I won't be coming back to this post.....write me any time. thanks.

Always On Watch said...

Sorry for injecting "personalities" here again, but I need to tell Duck something.

I've read your responses. I still fail to understand why you are tormenting Z. If you don't like her, then why don't you just ignore her? You've said your piece, and I don't need further explanation of your position.

Things are not going well for MW. Despite certifying, she cannot find employment. So many people are cutting back or pursuing other avenues with regard to home health care -- in part due to the regulations and restrictions of ObamaCare and in part due to the fact that so many medical people who had retired are now back in the work force because their spouses lost jobs. Of course, the Florida economy also plays in.

Always On Watch said...

I have tried to hold back at your site even though the Muslim dislike is pretty thick.

Muslim dislike? Well, I don't dislike Muslims, most of whom are very personable and hospitable in my experience. In fact, I bought one of my cars from a Muslim -- from Afghanistan, I think. And once, when Mr. AOW was ailing after shoulder surgery, one of his Muslim friends bought over a delicious dinner of chicken and rice. Another example: when we had Muslim neighbors, they had the key to our house and we to theirs so that we could feed each other's cats when one family was out of town; I also did babysitting for them.

In 2004-2006, I had dealings with a Muslim developer who had a contract on my property. I was nearly bedfast at the time because of that car accident I had. This developer paid me some money as purchasing an extension of the contract, which eventually fell through. But it was a very decent thing for the developer to do, and the money was never demanded back.

All the above blabbing to indicate that I do not hate Muslims and have indeed had good dealings with several.

Now, I do have issues with certain tenets of Islam as they impact Western societies.

You are complex enough to be worth understanding but I really don't believe you understand what you support.

I thank you for the complimentary part of that statement. As to what I support, however, it is not any such actions like Breivik's -- that's for sure. And I don't support persecuting Muslims nor rounding them up for deportation. What I DO support is the debunking of the whitewash of Islam and, specifically, revisionist history in our academic institutions and in textbooks and the media. I also do not support any whitewash of the history of Christianity, Hinduism, etc. History classes and textbooks should present the full range of facts.

I do realize that Islam is more complex than many readers of sites such as Jihad Watch. As you know, I respect Robert Spencer. But I also realize that many others who follow Robert Spencer have simplified his "message" to something I cannot support: Western supremacism combined with Western persecution of Muslims.

As you know, I have pig statues on my property. Muslims may not like those statues, but as long as Muslims don't try to stop me from decorating my property with porcine figures, I have no problem. I actually had one Muslim refuse to come to my door "because of those pigs." Sheesh. This individual was a Muslim realtor representing me in the attempted sale of my property. Business should be business -- without any supremacist philosophy being involved.

Always On Watch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Always On Watch said...

You've been very patient through all this personal "crap." Thanks for that patience.

I'm done sending any messages to Duck.

Brooke said...


Ducky, you are a filthy-mouthed bigot.

Silverfiddle said...

AOW: No problem! I like to think of myself as a friendly little coffee shop where we can pull off of the information superhighway and have a chat.

Brooke: Tell it like it is! Way to shove it back in his face.