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Elizabeth Warren supports Corporate Welfare

by Rodan ( 357 Comments › )
Filed under Barry Goldwater, Conservatism, Democratic Party, Hipsters, Libertarianism, Progressives, Republican Party, Socialism, Tea Parties, The Political Right, Tranzis at July 23rd, 2014 - 10:48 am

elizabethwarren

The Progressive movement’s darling of the hour; Elizabeth Warren aka Fauxahontas rails about big corporations and the 1%. When push came to shove, she defended the interest of the same entities she denounces. An alliance of Social Conservatives/Tea Party and Libertarian/Fiscal Conservative Republicans are blocking the renewal of the corporate welfare based Export-Import bank. This is nothing but a form of welfare to prop up big corporations, many of whom outsource jobs overseas. When invited to join opposition to this from welfare, Elizabeth Warren defended the EX-IM bank.

It was a really nice try.

Heritage Action (the activist arm of the conservative Heritage Foundation) invited Senator Elizabeth Warren to speak at an event dedicated to phasing out the Export-Import Bank. The Ex-Im, as it’s known inside the Beltway, has become a favorite target of populist forces on right.

The Ex-Im gives U.S. taxpayer-backed loan guarantees to the foreign customers of giant U.S. corporations that don’t need the help. It socializes the risk while privatizing the profits. Basically, it’s free money for big businesses like GE, Caterpillar, and particularly Boeing (hence the outfit’s nickname, “the Bank of Boeing”). Even Barack Obama, shortly before he became president, derided Ex-Im as “little more than a fund for corporate welfare.”

[....]

As first reported by Bloomberg News, Heritage sent Warren a letter asking her to speak against Ex-Im “and the political favoritism it engenders.”

“We, like you, are frustrated with a political economy that benefits well-connected elites at the expense of all Americans,” Michael Needham, the head of Heritage Action, wrote. “Your presence will send a clear signal that you are going to fight the most pressing example of corporate welfare and cronyism pending before Congress right now.”

Warren didn’t take the bait. Her spokeswoman told Bloomberg, “Senator Warren believes that the Export-Import Bank helps create American jobs and spur economic growth, but recognizes that there is room for improvement in the bank’s operations.”

[....]

I’m not so sure there’s a contradiction here. Rather, I think we’re seeing why there will never really be a bipartisan Left–Right alliance against crony capitalism and corporate welfare.

The Right’s “libertarian populism” wants to separate big business and big government. That means no more “too big to fail” and no more of government picking winners and losers.

The Left’s anti-big-business populism is very different. It doesn’t want to cut the government’s incestuous relationship with big business; it simply wants to bring business to heel. Big business should do what Washington tells it to do, and when it does, it will get treats. When it doesn’t, it will get the newspaper to the nose. But big business will never be let off its leash, if the Left has its way.

The Progressive rhetoric against big corporations, is just all talk. In reality the Progressives are tied to the hip with big companies like Goldman Sachs and GE. In a heavily regulated economic structure, politically connected big corporations thrive, while medium and small firms die. This is the reason why Silicon valley, Wall and Corporate CEO’s support the Democrat Party. They ensure the government prevents competitors from rising, thus hindering the free market and destroying economic mobility.

Elizabeth Warren’s support fior the corrupt and Fascist like Export-Import bank shows that Democrats despite their rhetoric love big businesses. Fauxahontas is fraud and hypocrite like all Progressives. They just want to control those corporations to do their buidding.

If the Republicans would stop obsessing with Gays in comic books or other useless cultural crusades, they might actually be able to hit the Democrats on their Achilles heel of being the party of the well connected. Americans are hurting economically as take home pay is less than it was 14 years and many people have lost hope for the future. I will not hold my breath expecting The GOP to embrace a Libertarian-Populist ideology, hammer the Progressives on their Fascist ideology and promote a POSITIVE future oriented agenda to benefit all Americans.

In the meantime, Elizabeth Warren is laughing all the way to the bank!

On another note, I really recommend reading Pat Buchanan’s new book: “The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose from Defeat to Create a New Majority.” It shows how the Republicans after their 64 debacle were politically resurrected by Nixon. Richard Nixon for all his faults, helped the GOP adapt to the electorate that existed and forged a coalition that would go 5-1 from 1968 to 1988. This is a lesson the GOP of today can learn if they were a serious entity.

Thad Cochran And John McCain Save Team Palooka!

by Flyovercountry ( 215 Comments › )
Filed under Progressives, Republican Party at June 30th, 2014 - 12:00 pm

150218 600 Miss Sen Thad Cochran cartoons

Palooka – A prize fighter who purposefully throws a fight in which he is favored, in exchange for a payoff.

When I was a 5 or 6 year old wannabe alpha male in my home town, feeling those first oats provided by the Y Chromosome, I threatened another 5 or 6 year old kid to that ultimate deciding contest little boys of that time period used to settle disputes. I threw the first punch, and subsequently got my little fanny beat. He won and I lost, dispute settled. I lost as much due to the surprise of what followed my act of aggression, which was his counter aggression. In the disputes of six year old boys, as in life you see, the other guy is allowed to hit back. I was surprised when he did, since I felt justified in my cause in the first place, and that surprise at being hit back froze me just a little bit. That lesson is one I remember to this day. Take a shot, expect one, or hundreds to be returned in your direction. Return a volley in response, don’t expect that to end it either. Everyone feels justified in their position, and if they don’t, they’re not the sort to take loss easily either.

Notice that the lesson learned here is not about who was right or wrong, I can’t even remember what the reason for fighting was anymore. The lesson is entirely about being prepared to finish what you’ve started, and being prepared to face the consequences of your actions. The Republican Party has been involved in a civil war going back to the 1964 primary. The Goldwater Wing/Conservative base of the Party has been trading blows in a decades long battle with the Rockefeller Wing/Establishment apparatchiks who run the party. Both sides have taken shots at the other, and then whined like little girls when absorbing the shots thrown back their way.

John McCain has labeled all members of the Tea Party wacko birds and along with Mitch McConnel vowed to defeat every Tea Party Candidate in every election in which anyone was identified as being sympathetic to the group. At the same time, both men have whined of the need for unity in order to solidify and strengthen the Republican Party. Tea Party groups have for years threatened to, “primary rinos,” and brayed when those rinos fought back hard in their respective primaries, vowed to destroy the Tea party, and rallied the establishment money spigot so overwhelmingly at their disposal.

Slow down you pretentious distributors of righteous indignation, I’m not saying that the fight is wrong. I’ve been calling for this fight to happen for a long time. We need to hash this out, but just remember to keep your eyes on one reality. We do have common cause here, and that is to use the 2014 elections as a restraining order against the Obama agenda, and to prevent a President Hillary from being sworn into office on January 20, 2017.

With all of that being said, I was never ashamed of being identified with the Republican Party until Tuesday, and the days leading up to Tuesday of this past week. Thad Cochran pulled off what was undoubtedly the dirtiest campaign ever run by any member of the GOP, all in an effort to win a primary that he actually lost by 25,000 votes. He did it by having a Democrat Party staffer named Mitzi Bickers promise every piece of populist tripe offered at any time in that party’s sordid history. Robo calls went out to every Democrat in the state promising that Thad Cochran would help them keep the welfare state in tact, help them keep their wealth redistribution schemes in tact, help them inflict minimum wage increases, help them eliminate voter ID laws, and help them pass Barack Obama’s agenda, as envisioned totally by Barack Obama.

Folks, I have just a couple of thoughts here. First of all, if Republicans are going to win elections by campaigning as if they were not only Democrat Lite, but the furthest to the left Democrats available, what exactly is the point of being in an opposition party? Thad Cochran lost among Republican Voters by a huge margin, and only won by convincing Democrats to come out and choose the Republican nominee against the express wishes of the Republican voters of Mississippi.

He didn’t do this on his own, he had help, and that help came from the GOP establishment. Why have ideals and values at all, if that’s all they mean to people? I’ve sent the GOP solicitation crowd multiple return messages in lieu of a check. All of them have stated that until such a time as they prove some spunk in actually fighting for the principles that they have repeatedly promised they support, they’ll not get my hard earned dime. Next time, I’m filling the envelope with lead weights, a wooden shim, several dozen sheets of blank paper, and a letter that uses this incident to describe my displeasure. It is clear that the establishment Republicans consider their own voting base to be a problem needing eradication.

We who make up this disorganized grass roots movement should never again be surprised. They took our punches and fought back. People with power are willing, as we’ve just learned, to do anything in their effort to keep power. Thad Cochran has just taught us a valuable lesson, and one we should remember for the rest of our lives. They will scratch, kick, bite, claw, and do what ever it takes to win. The next time we get into one of these civil wars, or the next battle of this one, we should expect them to fight dirty, the dirtiest, all while speaking of a need to unite and help them fight our common enemies. If we do not expect the worst the next time out, that’ll be our fault, and nobody else’s. Thad Cochran ran on being a Democrat, and he cheated like one of them as well. We must expect this in the future.

To the GOP establishment types out there, especially those who wish for a united front in order to win elections in the future, how far do you think you’ll get without your voting base? The only reason Republicans hold the House, and the only reason John Boehner is the Speaker right now is due to the energy supplied by the Tea Party. Without that, you’d have nothing, which is right where you’re headed again, if you continue along this path. Even if you win this fall, it’ll only be due to the energy and anger of the Tea Party that has buoyed you up against your very own efforts.

To my fellow Tea Partiers, don’t abandon the GOP completely, let’s continue to work towards taking it back instead. There are many rinos out there to be sure, but there are also many decent people representing the GOP brand. Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, Bobby Jindal, Mike Lee, etc. I share your anger yes, but I am not suicidal, and America is worth fighting for.

To everyone, when any Republican victory seems to be in hand, for what ever battle presents itself as being crucial, look for Thad Cochran to be that next guy who purposefully kisses the canvas. John McCain’s done it so many times now that the canvas doesn’t even expect dinner afterwards. Cochran on the other hand owes a dive to the political left, and believe it, he’ll take that dive when it really counts.

Cross Posted from Musings of a Mad Conservative.

Scott Walker Is What The GOP Needs For 2016

by Flyovercountry ( 110 Comments › )
Filed under Republican Party, The Political Right at June 24th, 2014 - 8:14 am

First, I am usually loathe to make an endorsement prior to a majority of the public discourse having been laid out for all to see, but these are unusual times my fellow inhabitants of the worker’s paradise formerly reserved for the free and brave. We need something unusual, and Scott walker is that. He is a Republican Governor of a decidedly blue state, and what’s even more important, he’s not a Rino who ran as a Republican simply to get himself past the crowded Democrat field. He’s as Conservative as they come, and has appeal for the Tea Party base and the Establishment types as well. He’ll be able to unify the party, and will do so without pandering to the populist positions of the past, as we’d seen from Bob Dole, John McCain, Mitt Romney, and of course Chris Christie.

We won’t get the Democrat Lite Pet Issue du jour, national minimum wage indexed to inflation, feel good gun control laws which would do nothing to change what ever horrific event found its way to the daily news cycle in order to scare us, no sitting on a couch with Nancy Pelosi for a common stance on how to combat make believe problems for no other purpose than to appeal to left of center voters, and there will be no pimping out of new entitlement programs or creation of new massive federal agencies or directorates. What would we get from a President Walker? If his performance in Wisconsin is any indication, less government spending, a balanced federal budget, the shrinking of our entitlement culture, someone willing to fight hard against the special interests of the Unions, tax cuts, less federal regulation, and most importantly, someone willing to fight against both the liberal narrative and framing of debate, and someone who will fight against capitulation within his own party. That last point is of major importance.

In the face of opposition, Scott Walker did not fold, he fought back, which is something that has been lacking from the right side of the aisle for quite a long time. He won the election for Governor of Wisconsin, despite the veritable fortune spent by the Unions to defeat him, as did a Republican Majority in their State Legislature and State Assembly. Shocking as it may seem, Walker and the bicameral Legislative Branch of Wisconsin actually went about the business of enacting the agenda upon which they’d campaigned. (A note for those paying attention, they campaigned on a platform of unapologetic conservatism, something which won in bluest of blue Wisconsin.) The Political Left went ballistic, and Wisconsinites were treated to their State Capitol becoming a circus. The Walker reforms were eventually enacted anyhow, and the Political Left, rife with massive amounts of union cash attempted to recall each of the newly elected GOP Legislature members. This of course failed to turn control of the Legislature, despite the Millions poured into it, and the State’s election of a Supreme Court Justice became the next battle ground for the right versus left proxy war. The same hysterical effort was employed, and again Wisconsin broke spending records for a Supreme Court election, in which the union backed candidate lost. Next, Scott Walker faced a recall election, and became the only Governor in U.S. history to defeat such an effort. He not only won, but actually polled a higher percentage of the vote than his initial election. Through it all, Walker himself never once flinched on his positions. He never compromised on his beliefs, and he never capitulated to the please those seeking to have him move to softer more centrist, (meaning tacking to the left,) positions politically. In the face of that, he cut his state’s spending, balanced a budget, refused to hop on the Medicaid expansion bandwagon, cut taxes, instituted deregulation, and maintained his bona fides as an unapologetic eloquent spokes person for free markets, limited governance, and self determination.

I realize that Walker has not announced his desire to run for this office, and currently is engaged in convincing the good people of Wisconsin that he deserves another four years as the top executive of that state. However, if he does run, he’ll have my vote. The left will always tell us who they are afraid of, not with their actual words, which are seldom truthful, but with their deeds. The money spent by the left to defeat Walker is astounding, even more so when all of the aforementioned shenanigans are added together. Busing in professional protesters to Madison during the summer of 2011 must alone have cost a fortune, and then feeding and housing for the duration of that battle, and all of that effort to be soundly defeated in three subsequent elections, that’s got to sting a bit. The recent unsealing of a document, (one that contains not a single scrap of evidence by the way,) and then trumpeting it to the press as if its some sort of revelation, is itself that loud and clear indication that the left is terrified of a Walker candidacy. When they take the destroy at all costs attitude, that’s who they believe can really defeat them. This is a malevolent version of Brer Rabbit begging not to be thrown into the briar patch.

Walker is a straight forward eloquent advocate for the principles that got Reagan twice elected in landslides. He is unapologetic, forceful, and unwavering. He won’t sell out in order to pander, and that more than anything terrifies the other side.

Exit Question: In that game of, “is the Republican crazy, senile, evil, or stupid,” which one will Scott Walker get?

Cross Posted from Musings of a Mad Conservative.

Sen. Rand Paul makes the case against Iraq Intervention

by Rodan ( 1 Comment › )
Filed under Al Qaeda, Iran, Iraq, Islamists, Libertarianism, Republican Party, Special Report at June 20th, 2014 - 8:14 am

As evil ISIS is, let us not lose sight at how evil Iran and their Iraqi Shiite lackeys are. It was Iran’s puppet PM of Iraq Nouri al-Maliki who instigated this sectarian war by promoting Shiite supremacy. While most  Republican politicians are salivating for another nation building exercise, Rand Paul once again takes a brave stand against the Jacobin/Trotskyite mindset that has infected the Right when it comes to foreign policy.

Though many claim the mantle of Ronald Reagan on foreign policy, too few look at how he really conducted it. The Iraq war is one of the best examples of where we went wrong because we ignored that.

In 1984, Reagan’s Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger developed the following criteria for war, primarily to avoid another Vietnam. His speech, “The Uses of Military Power,” boils down to this: The United States should not commit forces to combat unless the vital national interests of the U.S. or its allies are involved and only “with the clear intention of winning.” U.S. combat troops should be committed only with “clearly defined political and military objectives” and with the capacity to accomplish those objectives and with a “reasonable assurance” of the support of U.S. public opinion and Congress and only “as a last resort.”

Much of the rationale for going to war in 2003 did not measure up to the Weinberger Doctrine, and I opposed the Iraq war. I thought we needed to be more prudent about the weightiest decision a country can make. Like Reagan, I thought we should never be eager to go to war. And now, 11 years later, we are still dealing with the consequences.

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Let me address both of these. First, we should not put any U.S. troops on the ground in Iraq, unless it is to secure or evacuate U.S. personnel and diplomatic facilities. And while we may not completely rule out airstrikes, there are many questions that need to be addressed first.

What would airstrikes accomplish? We know that Iran is aiding the Iraqi government against ISIS. Do we want to, in effect, become Iran’s air force? What’s in this for Iran? Why should we choose a side, and if we do, who are we really helping?

[....]

Saying the mess in Iraq is President Obama’s fault ignores what President Bush did wrong. Saying it is President Bush’s fault is to ignore all the horrible foreign policy decisions in Syria, Libya, Egypt and elsewhere under President Obama, many of which may have contributed to the current crisis in Iraq. For former Bush officials to blame President Obama or for Democrats to blame President Bush only serves as a reminder that both sides continue to get foreign policy wrong. We need a new approach, one that emulates Reagan’s policies, puts America first, seeks peace, faces war reluctantly, and when necessary acts fully and decisively.

Thank God Rand Paul is trying to resurrect the GOP’s traditional foreign policy stance that has been hijacked by a Jacobin/Trotskyite cabal. Both ISIS and Iran/Iraqi Shiites are enemies of the US. It is in our interest for both sides to continue killing each other. No Islamic nation is worth the blood of Americans.

 

More on Cantor’s Loss

by coldwarrior ( 100 Comments › )
Filed under Debt, Economy, Open thread, Politics, Regulation, Republican Party, taxation, The Political Right at June 18th, 2014 - 12:00 pm

This article sums up the division in the GOP quite nicely.

Sure, I agreed with some of the things he voted for, but in the long run (as we in the dismal science love to say) he failed in the basic task that a conservative has in DC: Limit the size of Fedgov and return power to the States, return power to YOU.

The video at the end is well worth the watch as well.

 

Will Anybody Really Miss Eric Cantor?

His stunning loss was built on a terrible record of big-government conservatism at its worst.

| June 17, 2014

Will anybody really miss Eric Cantor? Probably not. Despite (or maybe because of) his position in the House Republican leadership and the historic nature of his primary loss, there was virtually nothing remarkable about him as a politician or a policymaker. The Republicans have dozens or hundreds or thousands more just like him. He’s like a Dorito corn chip in those old Jay Leno ads: They’ll make more.

Cantor exemplifies what Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) just denounced as a “Chamber of Commerce”-style GOP legislator, “the same-old, same-old,” standard-issue Republican who has brought the party to a historically low level of self-identification among voters.

Cantor was what passes for a small-government conservative. Which is to say that Cantor was in favor of shrinking the size and scope of government…except for the endless list of exceptions that allowed him to help grow federal spending by more than 50 percent in real terms, and regulatory spending by even more, during the Bush years.

You know the drill: As a “conservative,” Cantor wanted the government out of people’s lives because FREEDOM-FOUNDING FATHERS-CONSTITUTION. Yet Cantor was anti-gay marriage and anti-abortion (he even wanted to prohibit adults from transporting minors across state lines if they were getting abortions). Because the federal government really should dictate all that, right? He endorsed a constitutional amendment against flag burning because free expression doesn’t mean you can actually express what you mean. He was pro-gun or, more specifically, pro-National Rifle Association. He was pro-drug war. Nothing unique or interesting there.

He wavered ever-so-slightly on immigration reform, meaning that he believed some children of immigrants shouldn’t be punished for their parents’ transgressions (big of him, really, at least in a GOP context). But he voted to build a militarized fence along our border with Mexico, pulled a 100 percent rating from the xenophobes at the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and he wanted English to be the official language of America (what’s Mexican for WTF?). He loved the national security state (including virtually unchecked surveillance of Americans as well as foreigners), defense spending, and wars (especially when a Republican was in the White House). He voted for No Child Left Behind, the single-biggest increase in federal control over education because education is an issue best dealt with at the local level, unless conservative Republicans run the country.

On spending and economic issues, he was atrocious and hypocritical in all the ways that a Republican can be. Of course he voted for the 2003 expansion of Medicare to include prescription drugs, even as he voted against allowing Medicare to negotiate cheaper prices for that unwarranted giveaway to the nation’s seniors. He signed off on the Bush budgets and he championed the Troubled Asset Relief Program and the illegal auto bailouts (at least as long as a Republican was president).

Like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Cantor was a spirited defender of the Export-Import Bank, an FDR-created boondoggle that guarantees loans to foreign businesses who buy American products. As the Mercatus Center’s Veronique de Rugy has shown, the Ex-Im Bank is among the purest excrescences of crony capitalism, with favored U.S. companies such as Boeing getting massive subsidies via the program. Cantor was the leader in the effort to reauthorize it two years ago and was the point man on this year’s reauthorization too. He loved the House Republican budget resolution, the so-called Path to Prosperity, which is full of accounting tricks (such as zeroing out spending on Obamacare while keeping all the program’s revenues) and would increase annual federal spending from $3.7 trillion in 2015 to $5 trillion in 2024.

If Cantor does indeed exemplify the Chamber of Commerce-style Republican that enflames the Tea Party even more than it does liberal and progressive Democrats, does the majority leader’s defeat spell doom for the GOP establishment?

I hope so, but it’s far from clear. Cantor’s district had been redrawn, and while it remained solidly red, he was unfamiliar in much of it. His internal polling was way off, so he didn’t start a counter-campaign until it was too late. For reasons that aren’t clear, he pulled 8,500 fewer total votes in this primary than he did in 2012, a drop The Washington Post notes is wider than his opponent’s 7,200-vote margin of victory.

Primary voters tend to be much more ideological and extreme than general-election voters, so they aren’t representative of larger party dynamics. Economics professor David Brat vanquished Cantor in part by touting a tough line on immigration, but it’s not clear that rank-and-file Republicans are anti-immigrant or even care much about the topic. A recent Politico poll, for instance, finds 64 percent of Republican voters in favor of comprehensive immigration reform, and the topic is way down on lists of voter concerns.

For all those reasons, I think it’s folly to talk about Cantor’s loss as meaning more than the obvious: He perfectly represented the modal Republican in that he talked about limiting government while actively growing its reach in virtually every way. That is a supremely unattractive character to be in contemporary American politics, and it helps explain why Gallup finds just 25 percent of Americans identify as Republicans (the news isn’t rosy for Democrats, either, according to Gallup: Just 31 percent of Americans identify with that centuries-old brand). Last Saturday, Rand Paul told the Texas Republican Liberty Caucus that people everywhere “say it’s time…for this libertarian moment, this liberty moment. It’s no longer something that scares people, it’s what [makes] people say, we can’t run the same-old, same-old, we’re not going to win with the same-old, same-old.” Eric Cantor was definitely the same-old, same-old. The GOP is choking on guys (yes, guys) just like him who talk about limited government and then legislate in a totally different way.

I hope that Paul is right and folks want to embrace a vision of limited government that extends to social issues and spending issues. I don’t think the rejection of Cantor by primary voters tells us much about that. But it does signal that the status quo is up for grabs and that undistinguished pols like Cantor should be shaking in their boots.

 

A Bitter Aftertaste by Thomas Sowell From National Review

by Mars ( 130 Comments › )
Filed under Al Qaeda, Anti-Jihad, Barack Obama, Blogmocracy, Conservatism, Democratic Party, George W. Bush, Guest Post, History, Iraq, Islam, Islamic Invasion, Islamic Supremacism, Islamic Terrorism, Islamists, Jihad, Leftist-Islamic Alliance, Middle East, Military, Muslim Brotherhood, Patriotism, Politics, Progressives, Republican Party, September 11, Terrorism, Tranzis at June 18th, 2014 - 7:00 am

Putting this up as per request. Thomas Sowell skewers nation building and compassionate warfare.
Mars.

The news from Iraq that Islamic terrorists have now taken over cities that American troops liberated during the Iraq war must have left an especially bitter aftertaste to Americans who lost a loved one who died taking one of those cities, or to a survivor who came back without an arm or leg, or with other traumas to body or mind.

Surely we need to learn something from a tragedy of this magnitude.

Some say that we should never have gone into Iraq in the first place. Others say we should never have pulled our troops out when we did, leaving behind a weak and irresponsible government in charge.

At a minimum, Iraq should put an end to the notion of “nation-building,” especially nation-building on the cheap, and to the glib and heady talk of “national greatness” interventionists who were prepared to put other people’s lives on the line from the safety of their editorial offices.

Those who are ready to blame President George W. Bush for everything bad that has happened since he left office should at least acknowledge that he was a patriotic American president who did what he did for the good of the country — an assumption that we can no longer safely make about the current occupant of the White House.

If President Bush’s gamble that we could create a thriving democracy in the Middle East — one of the least likely places for a democracy to thrive — had paid off, it could have been the beginning of a world-changing benefit to this generation and to generations yet unborn. A thriving free society in the Muslim world, and the values and example that such a society could represent, might undermine the whole hate-filled world terrorist movement that is seeking to turn back civilization to a darker world of centuries past.

But creating such a society, if it is possible at all, cannot be done on the cheap, with politicians constantly calling for us to announce to the world — including our enemies — when we are going to leave. The very idea is silly, but everything silly is not funny.

We haven’t yet announced when we are going to pull our troops out of Germany or Japan, and World War II was over more than 60 years ago. Turning those militaristic countries around was one of the great achievements in human history. Their neighboring countries have been able to enjoy a peace and security that they had not known for generations.

Perhaps what was achieved in Germany and Japan made it seem that we might achieve something similar in Iraq. But “the greatest generation” that had fought and survived the horrors of war around the world was under no illusion that trying to turn our defeated enemies around would be easy, quick, and cheap. Creating democracy in Germany and Japan was a goal, but not a fetish. Creating a stable and viable government amid the ruins and rubble of war was the first priority and a major responsibility. You cannot create instant democracy like you are making instant coffee.

There are prerequisites for a free society, and the foundations of democracy cannot be built on chaotic conditions with widespread uncertainty and fear. To hold elections for the sake of holding elections is to abdicate responsibility for the sake of appearances. The biggest danger is that you will create a government that will work at cross-purposes to everything you are trying to achieve — a government you cannot rein in, much less repudiate, without destroying your own credibility as representatives of democracy. That has happened in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

By contrast, in both Germany and Japan, power was turned over to elected officials at such times and in such degree as conditions seemed to indicate. Eventually, both countries resumed their roles as sovereign nations. But we didn’t publish a timetable.

Today, with terrorists threatening to at least fragment Iraq, if not take it over, it is a sobering thought that Barack Obama and his key advisers have a track record of having been wrong about Iraq and other foreign-policy issues for years, going back before they took office — and no track record of learning from their mistakes.

— Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. © 2014 Creators Syndicate Inc.

News Of The Tea Party’s Death May Have Been Premature

by Flyovercountry ( 274 Comments › )
Filed under Republican Party, Tea Parties, The Political Right at June 13th, 2014 - 8:00 am

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

It’s now two days past the shocking defeat of Eric Cantor. In the last 36 hours, I have read some of the world’s dumbest analysis on any political topic, all straining to make some kind of sense of how this unthinkable thing could have happened. An incumbent member of the House got beat in a primary. One who had spent more of his campaign war chest on fine dining than the total budget of his opponent. He was among the most powerful members of his party in the lower chamber of congress, and represented a Congressional District that is R + 10. In terms of whether his conservative bona fides were in order is a matter of debate, which probably did contribute to his loss. The polling data, as reliable as we all know that is, showed him with a comfortable lead, as recently as the day prior to the election. He got thumped, and by thumped, read beaten like the red headed step child who just stole Granny’s prescription money.

Among the more moronic theories I’ve seen, Virginia – 7 is tired of gridlock, and now wants to see Congress come together and work on passing Obama’s agenda. This was all about immigration, and not one single other issue mattered to the Republicans in Cantor’s home district. Some how, the good people living in Virginia – 7 have suddenly realized that they now, and for no good reason didn’t before, hate Jewish people. After all, they had 6 times previously elected Cantor to the very Congressional seat that they’d taken from him. The Libertarians have finally flexed their formidable muscle, which by the way represents a necessarily opposite argument to the, “this is all about immigration,” meme. I’ve read that this somehow ends the entire effort to repeal Obamacare, as if Brat, the Economics PHD and Professor wouldn’t be 100% on board with that effort once sworn into office.

Listen closely my fellow inhabitants of the formerly free land which served as a home for the brave. First and foremost, the primary election in Virginia – 7 represents the attitudes and beliefs of the Republicans who live and vote in Virginia – 7. Don’t read too much into Brat’s victory there. While some lessons for the Republican establishment can be gleaned from the ass kicking their man received, by and large it does not necessarily reflect the mood of the electorate on a national level. Mostly, the, “Tea Party,” candidates have not won against the establishment guys in enough places to consider this victory complete. On the flip side however, they have won enough to send a message back to the establishment. That message is, our voices better matter to you, because we vote.

The Republican Party has been at war with its voting base for multiple decades now. Over the last week, as with every other week, I received no fewer than a dozen pleas for money from various RNC apparatchiks imploring me to help them fight, “Barack Obama’s Radical Agenda.” Upon receiving each one, I’ll consider for just one moment actually making a donation, and then someone like John McCain or Susan Collins will state that perhaps repeal of Obamacare won’t be possible after all, and now our efforts should be placed within the construct of fixing the broken law. Eric Cantor was sent to Washington by the people of his district expressly based upon his fiscal bona fides. His getting behind and leading the charge on the multiple fiscally irresponsible deals over the years that saw our debt limit increased without concession from the other side, the ever increasing budgets inflicted upon American Taxpayers without concession from the other side, and his agreement on every penny of pork barrel spending without concession from the other side convinced his constituents that he would never live up to the rhetoric he promised while campaigning for his seat. Taking us down the path of national suicide at a slower velocity than that promised by the other major political party was not enough for his constituents, and that message was sent this past Tuesday.

That is a fairly simple message to understand, and it was delivered with clarity. Whether or not that message extends itself to other locations outside of Virginia is up for debate. Certainly every incumbent has a choice to make, whether to heed that warning or not. Watching this year however has shown me that the grass roots movement, and by the way not at all organized in any political sense, known as the Tea Party has been wildly successful. Candidates who are surviving primary challenges are doing so by shifting further to the right. The others of course have had their time at the plate and struck out, at least according to the people who vote.

Cross Posted from Musings of a Mad Conservative.

Good Morning GOP. Would you like a cup of TEA?

by coldwarrior ( 406 Comments › )
Filed under Election 2014, Elections 2016, Open thread, Politics, Republican Party, Tea Parties at June 11th, 2014 - 7:15 am

But, I thought the TEA Party was dead?

 

House Majority Leader Cantor defeated in primary

 

AP Photo
AP Photo/Steve Helber

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — In an upset for the ages, Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia, the second-most powerful man in the House, was dethroned Tuesday by a little-known, tea party-backed Republican primary challenger carried to victory on a wave of public anger over calls for looser immigration laws…

With votes counted in 99 percent of the precincts, 64,418 votes were cast, roughly a 37 percent increase over two years ago.

Despite that, Cantor polled fewer votes than he did in 2012 – 28,631 this time, compared with 37,369 then.

Remember us?   :lol:

Rand Paul to address the Urban League and to have a major foreign policy speech

by Rodan Comments Off
Filed under Headlines, Libertarianism, Republican Party, The Political Right at June 8th, 2014 - 2:30 pm

As much as I am very disillusioned with the state of American politics, Rand Paul gives me hope. His attempts to return to the GOP to its historical inclusive roots based on individual liberty and national unity is admirable. Unlike others in today’s GOP who engage in a us vs. them sectarian message, Paul is trying to broaden the party and expands its reach throughout the whole nation, not just rural areas. Unlike other Republicans Rand Paul rejects the revolutionary Jacobin style philosophy of permanent warfare when it comes to foreign policy. The Senator for Kentucky will address the Urban League and have a major foreign policy speech.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is helping open a “GOP engagement office” on Saturday in an African-American area of Louisville, part of a frenetic summer schedule aimed at reaching beyond the party’s traditional base, with explicit appeals to minorities and young people.

In late summer or early fall, Paul plans a major foreign policy address that will give him a prime chance to close a gap with establishment Republicans that has been perhaps the biggest hurdle to acceptance of Paul by party elites.

[....]

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is helping open a “GOP engagement office” on Saturday in an African-American area of Louisville, part of a frenetic summer schedule aimed at reaching beyond the party’s traditional base, with explicit appeals to minorities and young people.

In late summer or early fall, Paul plans a major foreign policy address that will give him a prime chance to close a gap with establishment Republicans that has been perhaps the biggest hurdle to acceptance of Paul by party elites.

[....]

Paul said his message to the Urban League will be “the libertarian message that we must defend every individual’s rights …. that individual rights need to be protected against majoritarian rule.” He said that notion is “incredibly important if you’ve been part of any group that’s ever been persecuted in history, and that can be African American, that can be Jewish American, that can be Japanese American.

[....]

“I think it’s important to keep elucidating where I’m coming from on foreign policy so basically it isn’t characterized by — or mischaracterized by – enemies,” he added.

In Louisville’s West End, the new Jefferson County Republican Party office will be named for the late William Warley, who crusaded against the city’s segregated schools and street cars in the Louisville News, which he founded in 1913. Warley helped bring the case that resulted in a 1917 U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down the city’s segregated housing.

Paul said: “Louisville was one of those cities [where], once upon a time, the African American population was predominantly Republican, and a driving force in us winning elections in Louisville. We used to win the mayorship of Louisville … because of a strong Republican vote among the African-American community. … “[W]e want to try to get to those days. We have a long way to go, and the vote has slipped gradually decade after decade. And we think we can’t get engaged African-American voters unless we show up and live and work in the community, and try to talk to them about what’s going on and see if we have some issues and ideas for how to make their community better.”

Kudos to Senator Rand Paul for breaking the mold of what a Republican should be like and for rejecting the growing sectarianism of today’s politics. Paul is giving a voice to many on the Right who have been silenced and politically oppressed the last 22 years. Rand Paul wants to unite this country unlike others who seek to divide us.

Neither party understands Hispanic voters

by Rodan ( 8 Comments › )
Filed under Democratic Party, Headlines, Republican Party at May 29th, 2014 - 9:30 pm

A new report out confirms something I have observed. Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans really understand Hispanic voters. Both go by stereotypes when dealing with Americans of Hispanic roots. Many Republicans assume Hispanics are all illegal brown uneducated people. The Democrats think Hispanic are helpless and need their protection. Both views fly in the face of reality.

The pressures against immigration reform are so obvious they’re almost cliché. Most Republican politicians fear revolt from amnesty-loathing conservatives. Many Democrats see strategic advantage in keeping the wedge issue alive.

What our leaders don’t see (or refused to acknowledge) are the false assumptions built into their positions, and the powerful incentives for both sides to compromise. They should read this report from Third Way, a Democrat think-tank with enough intellectual honesty to analyze data irrespective of its party bias.

Despite their rising political power, both Republicans and Democrats have tended to misrepresent Hispanic America.

Many Republicans view Hispanics as undocumented, poor, and unwilling to assimilate. But the data shows that Hispanics are overwhelmingly citizens and legal residents and have broadly adopted American values. Many Democrats emphasize immigration as the sole issue of importance to the community and assume Hispanics are liberals. But Hispanics are concerned with issues beyond immigration and hold complex—and often conservative views—on a number of issues.

 

The report’s author, demographer Michelle Diggles, warned her own party, “Hispanics are not born liberal Democrats.” While President Obama won the Hispanic vote in 2012 by 44 points, a majority of Hispanics identified at independents and only 32 percent as Democrats.

[....]

There’s more to worry Democrats in the report, including a “potential flashpoint” over religion. “Democrats cannot be complacent and should work to deepen their connections with the Hispanic community beyond immigration,” she wrote.
[....]

About 17 percent of Hispanics are undocumented immigrants, according to her analysis, a number that has fallen sharply in recent years.  ”Despite the lower levels of undocumented immigrants among the Hispanic community, the anti-Hispanic rhetoric unleashed by Republicans when they speak of immigration impacts the community writ large,”

Amnesty is not the solution for Republicans t0 attract his panic voters. But the GOP’s current policy of tolerating bigoted know nothing baboons like Ann Coulter  is not the answer either. Personally I could care less what the Republican Party does as they are not a serious political entity. They don’t even try to win over their own voters, let alone new ones.