Republican Navel Gazing

Ruminations on the election aftermath and internecine Republican party establishment squabbles (see also: snipe hunting):

Dems drove the messaging, played offense, turned out their base, and exploited the politics of fear, deceit, personal destruction of the opposition, and were generally successful in avoiding discussion of their record, their intent for the future, and the reality of our present situation domestically and internationally.  (Yes, yes, with the enthusiastic help of a sycophantic media machine.)

Reps, controlled by the “establishment” of the party, put forth their candidate – Dole III – ignoring a huge and powerfully motivated chunk of their base (can you say “Chik-fil-a?”  How about “November 2010?”), proved inarticulate in explaining (a) how shaky this economy really is and hammering home what will now happen with the full implementation of Obamacare, (b) the relevance and proper position of social values in the national psyche as related to our Constitution, and (c) the fundamental message of Conservatism as the single best way for individuals to thrive when government is out of the way.  (Yes, yes, with the enthusiastic help from some candidate’s genuinely idiotic gaffes.)

I note that the moderate [read:non-Conservative] Republicans in the races tended to lose, and that enthusiasm for “crossing the aisle” [read:tossing one's principles in order to - maybe - get a seat at the grown-up table] was markedly absent from, well, anyone but the Democrats.

Pundits and analysts and consultants (oh my!) wringing their hands over demographics, how going forward to appeal to Democrat/liberal women, Latinos, ad infinitum are missing the point.  Those constituencies suffer from dependence on handouts, ignorance of history, lack of curiosity and critical thought, and cannot be changed save through the long process of education, making continued inroads into reducing the impact of the still-dominant media, and, perhaps most importantly, weaning them from the teat of a statist government.  That last will be the most difficult, but it will, eventually, happen.  Either in a controlled and managed manner, or through the inevitable collapse of the entire house of cards.

Leadership in the Republican party is in need of a purge.  A start has been made with some of the newer winning candidates and the battle must be joined vigorously and right away.  Compromise, as defined by the Democrats, is NOT the solution.  The clock is ticking.





Forward, Forewarned

The long, long election season is at an end.  Pundits, analysts, and the half-gleeful, half-mournful electorate will have their say.  As will I.

The vision and policies of Obama will continue, with essentially the same federal structure established in 2010 – Republican House, Democrat Senate, dangerously puerile and incompetent Executive, schizophrenic SCOTUS.  Left unchecked, here’s what we can look forward to:

  • continued extra-Constitutional rule by fiat from the Oval Office
  • catastrophic damage to our military–thus our security–due to sequestration
  • virtually total isolation of Israel and an Iran armed with nuclear weapons, greater erosion of our relationships with historical allies
  • completion of the government takeover of 1/6th of the US economy and the collapse of Medicare with the scheduled implementation of the components of Obamacare
  • greater dependence on foreign energy sources, continued rising petroleum costs, more expensive domestic energy (and greater stress on an already overburdened power grid)
  • borders that remain porous and unchecked illegal immigration
  • more people out of work, more people added to the dependent class, fewer people able (or willing, if they are) to support those dependants
  • Joe Biden a heartbeat away from the Presidency, presiding over a Senate that continues to fail at meeting the simple legal duty to provide a budget
  • two, perhaps three new leftist justices to the Supreme Court
  • staggering tax increases both by raising the current rates and funding obligations under Obamacare; continued misguided money management by the Federal Reserve
  • more “stimulus” spending, higher deficits, ever-increasing national debt

And the list goes on.

I would be the first to admit that I am not a natural optimist.  But I have never been without hope.  Indulge me, please, while I quote myself from a recent correspondence:

” … what I have learned from history is that all civilizations–empires, if you will–rise and fall.  The rise is (relatively) meteoric, the decline usually painfully long and drawn out.  The devastation is ruinous whether delivered immediately or over time, nevertheless.

I have no reason to believe that the American experiment will prove an exception.  We share the same human condition, are subject to the same faults–to the inevitable fate of all great civilizations.

While in the grand scheme of things ‘all is vanity and grasping for the wind,’ I believe that we humans possess the seed of divinely created dignity, a natural yearning for freedom and liberty.  And that it is America that has provided the most fertile soil for that seed to sprout and grow.  I see the events in my lifetime and from the half-century prior as weeds entering the garden, and that the willingness to tend that garden is gradually dissipating, squandered in the distractions of comfort and laziness characteristic of what history has shown exists in all civilizations as they declined.

Yes, the culture has assimilated the last 100 years of (what I view as) the fundamental shift from the precepts and philosophies that gave birth to this nation, its innovations, its accomplishments.  Its wonderful, imperfect greatness.  But at what price?  The shift has occurred elsewhere before, in many of the same ways, and those cultures ultimately succumbed to the unavoidable collapse.

So.  If we’re not an exception, and it’s inevitable, why do I bother about it?  I suppose it’s also a part of human nature–certainly my nature–to want better for my progeny, for those around me, for those who don’t enjoy the blessings of this country.”

God, bless America.


Weak, in Review

Well, well.  Quite the eventful week in the Land of the Broke and the World at Large.  Let’s see …

The ludicrously dubbed “Arab Spring” deteriorates into a deadly Autumn, heading now toward a bitter, long Winter.  Reacting to the brutal murders of diplomatic personnel and to the dozens of US embassies under violent protest and outright attack, President Obama tells Netanyahu to not let the door hit him in the ass on his way out, yuks it up with Letterman, and heads to Las Vegas for a fund-raiser.  Campaign operatives move his scheduled speech from a large outdoor venue to a smaller indoor arena due to good weather.

Media responds with withering assault on the timing of candidate Romney’s remarks (after careful collaboration on their strategy), and report on ridiculously skewed polls showing the Presidential race still very close.  And photos of a topless Kate Middleton.

Unionized Chicago teachers abandon children (only half of whom might graduate, if they live that long), rejecting a 16% raise.  Schools remain open, though, so breakfast and lunch can be served.  CPS is $1.2 billion in the red, Union official says “This is our Arab Spring.”

First Lady Michelle Obama identifies our greatest national security threat as obesity (perhaps a veiled suggestion to Chicago schools to not feed the kids?).

Fed chair Bernanke announces another stimulus, $40 billion a month to cover mortgage-backed securities, with no ending date.  Said $ to come from … oh, wait.

Oh!  The iPhone 5, much criticized by those “in the know,” sells out in first day of sales.

God help us.


This One Really Does Matter

The nominees are nominated, the convention speeches spoken, and the media onslaught that is a modern US Presidential campaign begins in earnest.

Brace yourselves!

History shows that, sadly, it’s been but a tiny part of the electorate paying serious attention up to this point in the process.  I’m not quite sure how true that might be this time around.  At any rate, I hope We the People have the wherewithal to get involved now, because this contest truly matters.   My five-plus decades as an American have me believing this an election of staggering import.  In 60 days, We the People vote.  More accurately, the percentage of We the People actually involved in the process will determine a future for us all from, essentially, two alternatives.

One will effectively establish as the new order a callous disregard of our brilliant Constitution, the rule of law, and general lack of critical scrutiny by the dominant press, pushing us past the point where the momentum of the decline in which we’ve been can be reversed, rendering us incapable of self-governance.  Oh, “America” will still exist, for perhaps a long time yet.  But it will not be the Republic so masterfully conceived by, and purchased with the blood of, our ancestors.  It will be tyranny, under whatever label one wishes to apply; statism, socialism, communism.  A gentle tyranny, at first, perhaps led by the most well-intentioned so-called elites, but tyranny nevertheless.  And the good nature unique to the people who make up America, that spirit of independence and charity and grace, will gradually diminish.  The light of hope that draws people to this land will eventually be no longer visible.

The other, God willing, will find us beginning the process of returning, with much pain and noise and kicking and screaming, to the tenets and values upon which we were founded, our Republic having led to the greatest expansion of human freedom and prosperity in history.

Should the choice be the latter, it will be an extraordinarily difficult challenge that faces those who made it.  Those opposed will be angry, bitter, unreasonable, and operating generally out of a morbid, ignorance-based fear.  Those supporting will find themselves tempted to trust those they’ve put in positions of authority, and get back to truly important things like their faith and family.  I truly hope that such as these add as a priority to their lives keeping abreast of what happens after, holding accountable those they’ve entrusted, and turning their energies as well to educating those in our next generation.

In the coming days I’ll be elaborating on these thoughts, along with others.  I hope you’ll join me, and add your words as well.

Back in the Saddle

After a lengthy hiatus, my blog is back up and running.  Stay tuned for further posts.  I hope you’ll find here something of value, perhaps even get a laugh or two.  Do let me know, good or bad, won’t you?

Still putting some meat on the bones of this beast of a Web site, and it will always be the proverbial work in progress, but your reaction will be much appreciated.

Thanks for reading!