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7/29/2009
FRUM IS BEING TOO KIND
CATEGORY: Blogging, Media, Politics

To call the hysterically exaggerated, paranoid rantings of some talk radio personalities and conservative bloggers “whining,” as David Frum does in a series of now 4 articles on conservative despair, is being generous. These overwrought ninnies are the flip side of lefty loons who spouted about Bush turning the US into a Nazi state.

I wrote dozens (perhaps hundreds) of posts about this culture of hysteria on the left during the Bush years with many on the right wholeheartedly agreeing with me. I posed the question more than once, “If I really believed the country was descending into a fascist dictatorship, don’t you think that most of us on the right would be the first on the front lines to combat this evil?” Perhaps it’s time to turn that question around and ask if our freedoms really are being lost, what are you doing sitting at home writing spittle flecked rants about the dangers of dictatorship rather than taking your rifle and going out to battle this scourge?

So once again, I take my rationalist pen in hand and attempt to inject some reason into critiques of the Obama administration and debunk the hysterics who speak of the Republic as if it were in the past tense - or headed there full speed ahead.

Positing the notion that we are marching toward a socialist dictatorship or are losing our freedoms under Obama is just not supported by the facts. And Frum wrote in his second “Whine” post exactly what I have been writing and thinking since Obama took office:

The extremity of conservative pessimism attacks the foundational rules of the American political game. Since 1865, the United States has enjoyed amazing political stability. Americans have achieved this stability via tried and tested rules of the road, including the unquestioning acceptance of election results, an acknowledgement of the basic good faith of the other political party, and an absolute acceptance that people of all points of view are committed to the shared constitutional system.

If I lived in a country in imminent danger of a Bolshevik or Fascist seizure of power, I’d be a cowardly fool if I failed to use every means to prevent it, including violence if need be. If it were true that our political opponents wanted to impose tyranny on the United States – if (as Rush Limbaugh said the other day) a vote for the other party was a vote for “totalitarianism, dungeons, and torture,” then what patriot could possibly abide a political defeat?

Happily, none of those things are true. As wrong and harmful as the Obama administration’s plans are, the administration is playing by the rules of the game. To agitate people into thinking otherwise is to corrode the foundations of the American constitutional regime.

It is also to act and look like sore losers. If America has been sliding gently but irresistibly into soft despotism, where were all the valiant defenders of liberty before November of 2008? Soft despotism begins to look less like a profound sociological trend, more like undulations of the sine curve: It’s despotism when we lose, freedom when we win. We should have more confidence in the people and the country than this. We should also have more charity to our political opponents – who after all are contending with hideous problems bequeathed to them by … by … well suddenly we Republicans cannot seem to remember who preceded Barack Obama in office.

Frum is picking on Mark Levin whose book Liberty and Tyranny has sold 900,000 copies. Levin had a few choice words in reply but frankly, the Great One should know better. Frum’s point about conservatives being relatively sanguine when Bush passed the prescription drug bill, as well as No Child Left Behind is spot on. Sure, there was some grumbling and name calling, but Levin and other pop conservatives never spoke in apocalyptic tones about the massive intrusion of the government into the education of our children nor did many righties see the expansion of Medicare as the forerunner to today’s attempt to take over the health insurance industry.

This is what I’ve been trying to get across to those few conservatives who read this blog and are open to argument. Barack Obama is not a communist, or a socialist, or a fascist, or an anarchist. He is a child of the New Left, and most if not all of his agenda reflects ideas and programs that have been floating around liberal salons, think tanks, and symposiums for nearly 40 years, if not longer.

These ideas weren’t socialist then and they aren’t socialist now. Taking over the auto industry to save the jobs of his union supporters is stupid economics, not a slippery slope to communism. Buying preferred stock in big banks is government strong arming, not the end of capitalism in America. Spending and taxing us until we are a second rate economic power is bad governance, not the prelude to an attempt by Obama to destroy the country in order to set up a dictatorship.

I refuse to accept the liberal critique that this kind of opposition to Obama is largely race-based. That’s absurd on its face. Surely there is a small minority who harbor hate for Obama’s skin color, but this kind of paranoia and hysteria about Obama’s agenda is being fed by the need of many to be part of a great drama where our heroes on the right must save the Republic from its enemies. In short, the Levins, Limbaughs, and the rest of the pop conservative brigade who are standing up and screaming “Fire” in a crowded theater because some idiot lit a cigarette, are turning their listeners into a bunch of 11 year old drama queens.

It’s not enough that our political opponents have ideas that are wrong headed, illogical, resistant to reason, and profligate with the people’s money. These ideas must be evil, insidious, and transcendentally malignant - all the better so that the self-appointed watchdogs of democracy can ride to the rescue and save us from the Evil Lord.

It is, at bottom, an adolescent critique of the Obama administration because, as Frum points out, it substitutes emotion for reason, hyperbole for measured responses, and wildly accusatory rhetoric for a pragmatic approach to combating bad ideas.

Politics is not an exercise in self-expression. It’s an exercise in persuasion. The targets of that persuasion are not the already persuaded but the as yet unpersuaded. It is their concerns that need to be understand, their questions answered, their values appealed to. Harry and Louise did not denounce Clintoncare as fascism. They explained how it would harm the people it purported to help, and they made their case in calm commonsense terms and tone.

In today’s debate, conservatives could show that a public option will invite private employers to end their coverage and dump their employees into the government plan. Americans are practical people, and they’ll respond to practical sense. Because Americans start with a bias in favor of free enterprise, they’ll respond especially well to sensible conservative arguments. But if we elevate everything to an immediate 11 on the Spinal Tap sound amplifier, we’ll lose, and not just elections, but the deepest values we are trying to defend via elections.

In this year 2009, it often seems that liberals offer policies and conservatives offer emotions. True, the liberals offer bad policies and conservatives offer understandable or anyway pardonable emotions. Rick Santelli expressed something real and true in his famous CNBC outburst.

I think Frum is a little harsh with Levin, whose book - what I’ve read of it - is much more than a dark, emotional screed against Obama. There is an elegant defense of the free market as well as a passionate portrayal of conservatism as the antidote to Obama’s government overreach. But Levin can’t leave it at that and be successful. Talk radio is all about eliciting an emotional response from the listener, and urging conservatives to counter Obama with reason and pragmatism rather than gut busting anger and hyperbolic fear mongering cannot be done and still remain atop the talk radio ziggurat.

If I seem a little harsh with some of my fellow conservatives who see Gorgons and dragons behind every tree in Washington it is because the perception is gaining ground - fed by a media eager to falsely portray all conservatives as unbalanced weirdos - that we can’t be trusted to run the country because we are too angry, too emotional to govern dispassionately. I know that a majority of conservatives are not into the kind of over the top nuttiness exhibited by many on the right. This moronic cacophony is especially prevelant on the web where these memes are endlessly recycled and regurgitated in a kind of perverse feed back loop. It has become a contest to see which blogger or commenter can outdo the last one in spouting a riot of nonsense about Obama’s dark plans to cancel elections, round up opponents, even turn the country over to the Muslims.

Obama Derangement Syndrome is well established now. It is up to those conservatives who are more interested in returning to power than in despairing over how the United States has become a socialist country, to rationally critique the abominable policies of this administration, and regain the high ground in the debate.

Otherwise, we will continue to wander in a dark, depressing wilderness - one of our own making.

By: Rick Moran at 10:32 am
49 Responses to “FRUM IS BEING TOO KIND”
  1. 1
    funny man Said:
    11:08 am 

    I think some people just get an emotional high of throwing around ludicrous terms. Happened with Bush and is happening now. I for example find it offensive when people use the term ‘Socialism’ without knowing what they talk about and how many people perished in the Gulags and elsewhere. However, I strongly believe that we eventually will emerge stronger after sound minds have prevailed.

  2. 2
    John Said:
    11:34 am 

    To understand Levin’s radio personality, you really have to study Bob Grant, who was an icon of New York radio using the same schtick for a quarter-century, until his comment following Ron Brown’s death in 1996 led his new WABC bosses at Disney to fire him (and replace him with some guy named Sean Hannity).

    Grant’s take-no-prisoners, in-your-face style worked in New York, where hosts yelling at and hanging up on callers was the norm on talk radio, but was a turn-off in other parts of the country, as well as arming liberals of the 70s and 80s with the spin about how mean conservatives were. That was the genius of Rush Limbaugh when he went national, in knowing where the line was you couldn’t cross and smoothing over Grant’s rough edges for national radio consumption. He drove liberals crazy, but never offered up those damning sound bytes that would have allowed them to shut him down.

    The irony is that the success of Limbaugh in showing the ad revenue potential of conservative talk made it easier for the angry Grant-style talker to gain a national stage (though Michael Savage was several years ahead of Levin on the talk radio scene). And even Rush is harder edged today than he was when Clinton took office, with fewer “updates” (homeless, feminist, etc.) and fewer song parodies.

    That doesn’t mean Frum isn’t a self-important egotist, overly-certain of his own correctness and not afraid to tell everyone about it. But conservative talk radio that stresses white-hot anger over either making fun of or calmly explaining why Obama and other liberal are wrong about their programs is more likely to offer up sound byte time bombs that the left can use to create mini-firestorms to damage conservatives in general at certain key times before major Congressional votes or elections.

  3. 3
    Jeff Willour Said:
    11:59 am 

    Once again I come to RWNH and find, after reading one of your posts, much upon which to chew.

    Some of it is crow.

    You are what you eat, they say, so I best be finding a way to overcome that which drives me to that dish so often.

    Thanks again for providing me a point of view based on the real world rather than the fantasy, a service that is very much lacking elsewhere.

  4. 4
    jaime Said:
    12:58 pm 

    What’s even funnier is this language is often couched in the memory of the
    founders of this great country, portraying their views as equal to the
    wing-nuttery direction these whiners want this country to go.

    For those who actually know the history of the founders, they were very
    emotionally split in what they believed the direction of the revolution
    truly should go. Adams and Jefferson, two great friends before the first
    election after Washington, became bitter enemies until they finally made
    amends at an old age in their correspondences.

    Jefferson libeled Washington and Hamilton, Hamilton dug into Adams
    (perceived to be the top Federalist of Hamilton’s sect), Madison swung the
    center, but really fed Jefferson his political justification for outright
    opposition to his founding brothers.

    Until wing-nuts see this the right-wing voice will always be percieved as extreme and useless.

  5. 5
    Gregg Said:
    1:03 pm 

    The socialists must love this. We spend all of our time trying to figure out which one of us is ruining the country. Meanwhile, they have the White House, the Senate and the House, and they still blame Republicans in general for all that has gone wrong and currently prevents them from “Correcting the failed policies of the last eight years.” Moreover, we attack the one area of the media where we actually have an advantage.

    GWB acted like a gentleman on countless occasions after juvenile, baseless and often irresponsible attacks. The Democrats responded with more attacks. The vast majority of these attacks usually do not apply to politicians of the Democrat persuasion. We cannot depend on the media to point out these inconsistencies. They will not change their tactics until they are defeated. We must defeat them. Ideally, our superior ideas would prevail. Unfortunately, emotion helps - a lot.

    The tactics advocated above might work in a general election on the planet Vulcan, but here an earth passion and, yes, even anger drive elections.

  6. 6
    busboy33 Said:
    2:53 pm 

    In regards to the issue of antiObama = racism, while I’m sure this is fairly obvious let me just state it: most of the Lefties I know that think the racism strain is stronger than Mr. M. gives it credit for is based on the intensity of the attacks against Obama. Sure, Repubs attack Dems and vice versa, but the perception is that the attacks have gone to a whole new level. Kerry was attacked. Gore was attacked. Clinton was attacked. Pelosi gets attacked. But those attacks generally didn’t seem to rise to the “DemonicSocialistAntiChrist” level that the Obama gets as standard. As you said, the policies aren’t radically different than the Dem policies of the past, so the exponential increase in rhetoric appears to be based on something else . . . and it seems to many Blues that the only difference now is skin color.

    Maybe the over-the-top voices are just getting more play than they did. Maybe the media is so sensitive to the issue of skin color that they’re focusing on those voices more than in the past. Maybe the rise of blogging and the Internet has amplified those voices. Maybe liberals are so focused on finding racism that they are only locking in on the fringe, and ignoring the true Red body politic. Maybe . . . but it isn’t too hard to find comments like Beck’s “Obama hates white culture” that raise just about every warning flag.

    I want to agree with Rick that the whack-a-doodles are the ignorable minority of the RedState. I would be staggeringly disappointed in America if that wern’t the case. Here’s hoping Rick’s assessment isn’t just wishful thinking.

  7. 7
    obamathered Said:
    4:07 pm 

    David who? I’m sorry, but Liberty and Tyranny has more intellectual firepower and original thought in the first three chapters than Frum has spewed in his lifetime. Like the other conservocretins who had kind words for Obama, he has been proved an irrelevant fool.

  8. 8
    cdor Said:
    5:26 pm 

    Let’s see, what was it Reagan said, Rick? Oh yea, “There you go again.” It’s been almost a week since you posted a criticism of conservatives. What happened, did you run out of ex-lax?

    Right on Gregg and obamathered. David Frum, the moderate, the great nothing, helped elect the most liberal POTUS in this country’s history. Yep, that’s a winning tactic (you sure can’t call it a philosophy).

    Never give up, never give in. That’s the only way to win. Did you ever read Liberty and Tyranny, Rick? It’s sold 900000 hard cover books. It lays out the foundations of conservatism and, in Levin’s words, statism. Where is your review of the most popular and important (my view) political book in decades? Why are you so afraid of a no holds barred, take no prisoners conservative?

    David Frum is a schmuck. I, for one, would never be caught with my lips planted on his hindside.

  9. 9
    Anon Said:
    7:10 pm 

    Frum may have a point that some conservatives have come unhinged by the election of Obama; HOWEVER, I think it’s lines like this one from Frum’s piece that make many of us who have not come unhinged scratch our heads a bit:
    “Americans have achieved this stability via tried and tested rules of the road, including the unquestioning acceptance of election results, an acknowledgement of the basic good faith of the other political party, and an absolute acceptance that people of all points of view are committed to the shared constitutional system.”
    Come on now. Was Frum around for the Bush years? Very,very few in the democrat party — and even fewer in the media — “accepted” the election results of 2000, and I’ve seen everyone from Harry Reid to Nancy Pelosi to Al Gore to Barack Obama himself say that George Bush “lied, threw away the Constitution, sent children off to die for his daddy,” etc. — there was little “acknowledgement of the basic good faith of the other political party.” Moreover, we have groups on the left like ACORN actively working to subvert the Constitutional election process, and the Obama Administration is giving them billions in taxpayer funds to do it, while his Justice Department refuses to prosecute clear cases of voter fraud and intimidation. Now I’m not advocating that conservatives continue down the same lunatic road that the left has taken, but for Frum to whitewash what was some of the most vile, vicious, dishonest attacks on a sitting president by the leaders of the opposition party I’ve ever seen in my lifetime, and to leave out completely the democrat party’s ongoing commitment to election fraud is an insult to those of us who have been paying attention. By being dishonest on these very important points Frum dilutes the remainder of his argument because one simply has to ask: What the hell is he talking about?

  10. 10
    Commie Stooge Said:
    8:22 pm 

    Here’s the GOP ticket for 2012:

    President: Gov Sarah Palin

    VP: Rep Michelle Bachman, MN

    This will be a perfect ticket to get wingnut support!

  11. 11
    busboy33 Said:
    12:01 am 

    @ Commie Stooge:

    As what would be classified as a liberal, I wholeheartedly endoese this idea. Please. Dear God please.

  12. 12
    george andersen Said:
    12:13 am 

    I disagree with Frum. We have been creeping toward socialism since FDR; it’s called incrementalism. So what that the left has so far played by the rules and relinquished power when they have been voted out. Levin’s book is correct. His thesis is that the limousine left wants to install a new elite, the governing class, and concentrate all power, political and economic, among themselves. They will then treat the rest of us as children, and provide for our every need. The problem with this bargain is that the governed trade their freedom for promised cradle to grave security. Eventually all creativity is stifled, it becomes impossible to play the game anymore and there won’t be any transfer of power. The public will have become too dependent on their masters, and lack the initiative or power to act independently or self-responsibly. That is what Levin calls a soft tyranny. Contrary to what Frum says, awareness of this trend and the leftist goal did not spring out of thin air when Obama was elected. It just became emergent then - we now have the most inexperienced and leftist president in our entire history, congress is in the hands of idiots and nuts who don’t think it is important to read, much less understand, legislation (or perhaps they understand all they need to - if passed more power will be concentrated in them).

    As to Levin’s radio presona, I agree with some of what “John” has to say. Levin does himself a disservice with his rants and provides ammunition to his enemies. Nonetheless, we all have our flaws, he is a brilliant thinker, and his book is “spot on.”

  13. 13
    Pecos Pete Meyers Said:
    4:47 am 

    Mark Levin is a “Brilliant thinker”? Wow, really?

    I think that says more than anything else I’ve read on this site.

    Mr Levin, like Mr Anderson is no thinker at all.

  14. 14
    UNRR Said:
    6:06 am 

    This post has been linked for the HOT5 Daily 7/30/2009, at The Unreligious Right

  15. 15
    Conservosnememis Said:
    8:11 am 

    To try and diminish race as a cause of recent conservative craziness is to dodge the truth. If President Obama were not a black man, much of the recent outrage displayed by the right would not exist. The other reason for the craziness is The President has not been shy about filling his plate with the issues America needs to deal with to remain healthy. In case anybody has forgot(maybe not all will admit), the economic issues we face were brought on by the former White House occupants, who were doing exactly what the right wanted them to do. Bill Clinton did a good job of cleaning up Ronald Reagan’s mess, now President Obama has a huge job of cleaning up the Bush mess. It is no secret Reagan was the hero of George W. Oh, what a pretty picture Conservo has left of his own house. What some of my fellow white people are so angry about is someone of a race they hate holds the highest office in the land. Too bad Conservo, if most of what you believe in wasn’t so stale, tired, and outdated Sarah Palin might be a heart beat away from the oval office.

  16. 16
    Gayle Miller Said:
    8:42 am 

    This is why I posted a piece called “Enough is Enough” and received emails roundly castigating myself for saying it! Well I do believe Enough is Enough. I think Zero is going to go down in history as the worst president in the history of this nation - but only because of his enablers Reid and Pelosi and their crowd. I prefer to believe that once we get some balance by taking back both houses of Congress, we can contain his lunacy and perhaps even turn him into a halfway decent president. He’s such a hollow vessel, we can fill him with good things fairly easily!

  17. 17
    Gayle Miller Said:
    8:49 am 

    I do not dislike President Obama because he is a HALF black man. I dislike him because he is an incompetent fraud! He is ignorant of history and he is ignorant of all the good that this country possesses and has done. And he mistakes his job as President in many and egregious ways. He sees himself as some sort of RULER instead of as the truth of his position as an EMPLOYEE of ALL Americans.

    And canards against President Bush are devoid of reality and truth. No president has done more to combat AIDS in Africa. No recent president has had to face the kinds of challenges from terrorism that President Bush had to face. And the quisling voices emanating from the Dems in Congress weren’t any help.

    Conservonememis will have to present a much better case before anyone believes his nonsense!

    If you aren’t part of the solution, you are a big part of the problem. When President Bush needed the ADVISE and consent process to work, Democrats were too damned busy seeing to their own POLITICAL self-interests, rather than the country’s best interests.

    See - the blame game cuts both ways!

  18. 18
    jackson1234 Said:
    9:09 am 

    As to the racial argument, I look for Obama himself to make it as he slides into irrelevancy. The image of Johnny Cochran, Lee Bailey and the other clowns clad in the ANC colors at the Simpson trial may be repeated at the White House. Fortunately, the Left’s worn racism lies are routinely derided now and will pull them further down.

    For whatever reason my other post was pulled. I will assume it was due to the profanity. To summarize: Frum is a delusional twit. He has a tiny megaphone and lacks the intellectual heft of Levin. He is nothing, his website is insipid, and he is about to become as irrelevant to public discourse as Obama will be either after this fall or 2010. Frum hitched his wagon to an economic illterate and one-term wonder and will feel the full effect of his idiotic choice. I actually listened to an archived radio exchange between Frum and Levin. The former came across as shrill and quite vapid, and despite what is said about Levin’s radio act it was quite clear he was the adult and the brains in that conversation.

  19. 19
    Neo Said:
    9:22 am 

    Frum has made himself irrelevant.

  20. 20
    Shaun Said:
    10:14 am 

    Excellent post, although I agree with Conservosnemesis that race plays an uncomfortably larger role in the GOP’s dogged drive to make it increasingly irrelevant to an increasing number of voters.

    This from a guy who votes for more Rs than Ds because they usually field a better candidate at the state and local level. Nationally, however . . . it’s a bleak landscape.

  21. 21
    cdor Said:
    12:39 pm 

    Democrats are racist pigs that hate all minorities and all skin colors, including themselves.

    There, I said it because it had to be said. Prove me wrong.

  22. 22
    cdor Said:
    12:58 pm 

    And here is a super example of official Democratic racism from the United States Commission on Civil Rights. Please follow the link as it is a pdf file and cannot be pasted:

    http://www.usccr.gov/correspd/VoterIntimidation2008LetterDoJ.pdf

  23. 23
    sota Said:
    4:56 pm 

    “If President Obama were not a black man, much of the recent outrage displayed by the right would not exist.”

    Poppycock.

    Agreed. There is no difference - none - between the birthers and those who believed Diebold stole the election in Ohio. Both conspiracy theories are idiotic on their face.

    The kind of unhinged criticism and dire predictions of loss of freedom exactly mirrors - exactly - the unhinged nature of the criticism and fears directed aginst Bush. How many people passed around the idea of Bush orchestrating another terrorist attack so that he could cancel the 08 election?

    Many more than Michael, or Shawn, or any of my left of center friends would care to admit. The racial element to this is very small. If I had to hazard a guess I would put it at 10% - about the same number of Americans who are still trapped in a racist past. The real paranoia is from people needing drama in their lives. It’s just some people need to feel scared or bad in order to feel good. We saw it on the left with Bush and now on the right with Obama - in probably percentages that are very close.

    ed.

  24. 24
    busboy33 Said:
    6:16 pm 

    @Gayle Miller:

    “No president has done more to combat AIDS in Africa.”

    Sure. And good for him.

    “No recent president has had to face the kinds of challenges from terrorism that President Bush had to face.”

    Okay, sure. I’d quibble about how you phrase it, but I’ll concede that statement.

    That’s it? Therefore “canards against President Bush are devoid of reality and truth”? Wow. Setting the bar awfully low, aren’t you?

    No recent President has taken over during such a craptacular economy combined with two seperate wars. Wow — Obama has reachesd 50% of Bush’s greatness in only 6 months.

  25. 25
    busboy33 Said:
    6:17 pm 

    @Jackson:

    “The image of Johnny Cochran, Lee Bailey and the other clowns clad in the ANC colors at the Simpson trial may be repeated at the White House.”

    You’ve sold me — no racial animus here.

  26. 26
    Nagarajan Sivakumar Said:
    7:04 pm 

    Rick,
    Levin’s rants are not just about Obama or any other politician - its against an incrementally socialist system, as some one here put it. That is the perfect way to describe what is going on in your country (iam Indian)

    If any one thinks that the current “public” option is not a slippery slope to single payer healthcare, Barney Frank will disabuse you of any such notion.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3BS4C9el98

    I guess this is what Frum calls playing by the “rules” ! As in Washington DC based “rules”. He may have inadvertently hit upon some other point that I have always wondered about.

    A lot of conservatives claim that this is a right of center country - i consider myself conservative and i think it is true only to a certain level.

    A country that has such huge entitlement programs like Medicare, Social Security and has such a bloated Government starting with FDR’s reign cannot consider itself “right of center” - on top of this, there is now going to quasi nationalized healthcare.

    For those who think that the public “option” will be great, I can only point to Medicare and its coming entitlement crisis.

    For those who claim that this is a “right of center” country, I can only show the number of conservatives who happily live with Medicare and Social Security.

    If America is still a right of center country, I believe that the center has shifted slowly but surely to the left. That will ofcourse have consequences, but this Republic may come full circle another 50 to 60 years from now, if it proceeds this way.

    Also Levin’s idea of a soft despotism is nothing original - he himself concedes that. Alexis De Tocqueville wrote about this in Democracy in America - http://xroads.virginia.edu/~HYPER/DETOC/toc_indx.html

    And Levin refers to Tocqueville. Of course Frum does not even address this argument ! if he did, he would not be blathering about “good faith” !

    There is no such thing as good faith in politics. One side tries to win a decisive victory over the other. The Left is very close to doing it. The New Deal was the beginning of this permamnent victory.

    Governments can come and go, but ideas about what should be the relationship between Government and individual can be strong and lasting - more lasting than political parties themselves.

    The Left has slowly but surely succeeded in turning this country into the very anti-thesis of what it was founded on - liberty. When you so quietly and meekly accept such coervice mandates like Social Security and Medicare - when you allow your Government to automatically withdraw money from your paychecks EVEN BEFORE YOU GET TO SEE IT, I dont know how you can call yourself free.

    Public Health “option” would be just another Government mandated program that taxpayers will be contributing to.

    Whether they like to or not. Just as they had no choice about not participating in Social Security or Medicare. In fact none of these programs would work if people were given the free will of not participating in them.

    Who in their right mind thinks that Social Security is the best way to fund your retirement/ safety net? And what happens to those who disagree with this notion ?? Well, tough. You HAVE TO PAY for some one else’s retirement. Some one else WILL HAVE TO PAY for your own !

    We are not talking about “collective” here - like say roads or infrastructure. We are talking about our private financial lives.

    Levin is SPOT ON when he describes how incrementally, the Left has succeeded in turning this country into a collectivist paradise, whether people realize it or not. Whether people like it or not.

    Frum does not have the intellectual capacity to take on Levin’s core argument and instead completely sidesteps it. Talk about cowardice.

  27. 27
    cdor Said:
    8:51 pm 

    busboy33 says, ” No recent President has taken over during such a craptacular economy combined with two seperate wars. Wow — Obama has reachesd 50% of Bush’s greatness in only 6 months.”

    AND UNFORTUNATELY AT 50% AND FALLING

    busboy33 must be a racist because I perceive him to be so. Hey busboy, prove to me you’re not a racist.

  28. 28
    mannning Said:
    9:29 pm 

    #12 Andersen is right.

    If you look up the Socialist Party platform of 1928, you will find about 7 of 12 Socialist goals then to be exactly the same as being proposed by Obama today, but the difference is a far greater magnitude now in spending for these goals.

    That these ideas have been “floating around” for a while is certainly true, especially in Socialist/Progressive circles! Irving Kristol made that point rather well when recounting his early excursions into socialism/progressivism (to avoid their real title of communism) in his book “Neoconservatism”. The idea was to incrementally nudge the US towards a planned economy and central control through accretion of power and the purse strings by government.

    To declare Obama either way–Socialist or non-Socialist–one must look at the historical record of the Socialists. He appears to match their thinking very well indeed, so far.

    But, then, no one can declare him a socialist for certain, not yet anyway. You can’t look into his mind. So, I suppose you can’t declare him a simple Leftist either…unless you are clarivoyant.

  29. 29
    busboy33 Said:
    11:36 pm 

    @cdor:

    Sure — I haven’t made any claims about people’s race, or any claims about people’s behavior being a result of their race. See how easy that was?

    Your turn.

  30. 30
    cdor Said:
    6:26 am 

    Nagarajan, very nicely stated.”There is no such thing as good faith in politics. One side tries to win a decisive victory over the other. The Left is very close to doing it. The New Deal was the beginning of this permamnent victory.”
    The Left understands this.So called moderates, like Frum, don’t have a clue. He’ll still be criticizing Levin for his uncomfortable harshness, “Be nice, Mark! Be civil”, as the steamroller of the left flattens and grinds Frum, Moran, and all the rest of us who haven’t sucked up into the government elite (Levin’s Statists) right into the dustbin of history. We’ll all be walking around like zombies wondering where will come our next government hand out.

    Busboy, I have no idea if you are a racist, I doubt you are, and really don’t care. I was merely highlighting some of the absurd comments, generalizations, and presumptuous statements about conservatives posted herein. We all, every last one of us, have prejudices. It is the process of going from a blank slate (our DNA even disallows that) in the womb, to becoming the individuals we all are as adults. Only a blind person can look at a Negro or a Caucasion and not immediately register, if even subconciously, the color of that person’s skin. We can’t get past it if we don’t, at first, accept it.

    Manning, what is one to do? At some point if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks, well then…I think we got ourselves a duck.

  31. 31
    Doug King Said:
    9:55 am 

    I echo #30 who complimented and quoted Nagarajan(#26): ”There is no such thing as good faith in politics. One side tries to win a decisive victory over the other.” We expect a play-to-win mentality from parties and candidates, but I would hope journalists and ordinary citizens would adopt a learn-and-inform mentality, especially between election cycles.

    When winning is our only objective, we often lose respect for the other side. Conservatives are not immune from this problem which afflicts all sides in American politics. It’s hard to have a civil conversation about any important topic without inflammatory labels (”racist”, “socialist”, “wacko”, “bigot”, etc.) getting thrown into the mix. These labels are the political equivalent of shouting “Fire!” in crowded theatre — it’s very difficult to converse civilly after being accused of, or hearing someone get charged with, being a person who fits a despicable label.

    It sounds trite, but we would be better off if we followed the adage, “Seek first to understand and then to be understood.” Some years ago I was invited to a friend’s house (in Orange County CA) for a political information meeting. The ground rules for attending were: 1) Agree to research candidates and issues as assigned. (These research assignments focused on lesser-known candidates and complex issues. I was assigned one Demo. and one Repub.) 2) Summarize your research in one minute by presenting only facts — no opinions or endorsements were allowed. I was surprised to learn it is possible to adhere to the facts-only rule. Of course, after the presentations, people mingled and said whatever they wanted. I changed my voting plans in some cases based on what I learned that night. It proved to me it is possible to have civil and enlightening conservations about politics. You can respect those who disagree with you on important issues. You don’t get that level of discourse from talk-radio — not from Limbaugh et al or from Air America. That kind of conversation is hard to find anywhere. I wish more media outlets (newspapers, networks, talk-radio, blogs) focused more on learning and informing and less on persuading and judging.

  32. 32
    Jill1776 Said:
    12:11 pm 

    I couldn’t disagree with your article more…Obama is doing things the public has yet to comprehend or realize, he is transforming this country right before our eyes into something else, when it’s over we won’t recognize our country.

    Glenn Beck is the one who really understands what it is Obama is doing and telling us about it. Beck’s descriptions of Obama’s real agenda tells us so much more than anyone does, and he backs it up with past clips and quotes from Obama himself in his own words, and the results by what he is putting in place now to make it a reality. He puts the pieces to the puzzle in place, and the picture is not what we have thought. It’s not only about Obama’s wish to share around the wealth, which he admitted to Joe the Plumber.

    Watch the video from the link below of Beck describing Obama’s agenda for more than reparations, which he knew he could never get passed. It’s all about putting the minorities ahead of the bad white establishment that held them back for so long, for example by slipping into the health care bill things like medical schools must show preference to minorities, etc. Obama agrees with the histrionic views of Jerimiah Wright, Bill Ayers, and all of the other far outs from his history. Obama shares their agenda, and he knows how to make the system square it all up and then some for minorities, but mostly for the oppressed blacks to whom he feels we owe so much–much more than simple reparations. I hope I am not sounding racist, as I am not, I believe in equal rights for all, but not placing minorities ahead of others as payback. The video (and article):

    What’s Driving President Obama’s Agenda:
    http://www.glennbeck.com/content/articles/article/198/28330/

  33. 33
    busboy33 Said:
    1:03 pm 

    @cdor:

    I assume your coment was in regards to my #25 (otherwise I don’t understand it at all). Generalizations are bad. Wild hyperbole is bad.

    Why would Jackson think people in the white house are going to run around in ANC colors? That’s not generalization — it’s a specific comment from a specific person. What evidence, at all, is there that Obama is going to start wearing a dashiki? If there’s absolutely no evidence to suggest that, why think it? I feel pretty confident using my psychic powers to read Jacksin’s mind and saying he wouldn’t think a white President would wear African National Congress colors, so if it’s not a knee-jerk suspicion of a black person . . . what is it?

  34. 34
    funny man Said:
    1:14 pm 

    Clearly some people here believe the way to win elections is to stir up white working class voters against minorities. With an increasing minority population that has got to be a loosing strategy. I also believe affirmative action should be dumped but it matters how you say it. Race baiting is not the way back to winning elections. In that regard people like Beck are not helpful because they only preach to the choir and damage the conservative brand.

  35. 35
    busboy33 Said:
    4:41 pm 

    From FunnyMan:

    “In that regard people like Beck are not helpful because they only preach to the choir and damage the conservative brand.”

    Amen. Are the Repubs worried that the “Fear Of A Black Planet” crowd is going to go Democratic? Comments like Beck’s “Obama hates white people and white culture” and Limbaugh’s “Obama is a racist” chase everybody off except the people that were going to vote Repub anyway . . . and 30% ain’t winning elections.

  36. 36
    busboy33 Said:
    4:55 pm 

    I know this thread has drifted off topic, but let me ask this:

    For those that think Obama is the front for the Black Conspiracy . . . what has he done that advances the conspiracy? I know there’s alot of “action X seems perfectly inocuous, but if you believe that Obama is the AntiChrist then the action can be seen as part of the plot” rationale floating around, but what has he done that is suspicious WITHOUT being pre-disposed to hate him?

    I’m asking seriously. Jill @ #31 sees actions going beyond reparations. Jackson sees an ANC White House takeover. I see neither reparations or tribal dance, at all, anywhere. What are my deluded eyes missing?

    I’m no Obama-worshipper. Give me a reason to dislike him and I have no problem jumping on board. But I need a reason.

  37. 37
    funny man Said:
    5:34 pm 

    busboy,
    there are going to be no reparations. Everybody knows this. People like Al Sharpton are not respected in the black community but they are the people that some right wingers love to hate. I know he is irrelevant so I don’t care. This is just something to stir up emotions and drive up the ratings for their respective shows. For me this is the last thing I worry about or second last before birth certificates.
    In the meantime, policy is being made. I’d prefer people start using their mental resources to combat that.

  38. 38
    cdor Said:
    6:15 pm 

    busboy33 Said:
    4:55 pm

    I know this thread has drifted off topic, but let me ask this:

    For those that think Obama is the front for the Black Conspiracy . . . what has he done that advances the conspiracy? I know there’s alot of “action X seems perfectly inocuous, but if you believe that Obama is the AntiChrist then the action can be seen as part of the plot” rationale floating around, but what has he done that is suspicious WITHOUT being pre-disposed to hate him?

    WHAT THE HELL DOES HIS SKIN COLOR HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING?

    It’s his policies that blow me away. Did you believe him when he said that under his governance only 5% of the people would pay for all of his social engineering. Don’t you become a bit concerned when 40% of our citizens are getting a free ride. The IRS just reported in 2007 (yes after Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy had been in effect for 6 years) the top 1% of wage earners who earned 22% of total income, paid 40% of the taxes. See here:

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/news/show/250.html

    I hated the irresponsible spending and new prescription drug entitlement of the Bush years. I hated the lack of even marginal concern for our border security and the slap in the face to law abiding citizens that those policies incure. And although I was very confused by the financial meltdown, I hated the TARP bailout. But even with all of that, we were fighting a war on three fronts, Afghanistan, Iraq, and our Homeland and Bush left with a 450 Billion dollar deficit after 8 years. Obama is quadrupling that. Are you comfortable? Is this how you would handle your own finances?

    And what about our two glorious government run social programs, the ones in which we all participate? Of course I am speaking of Social Security and Medicaire. How has our government handled them? 50 some trillion dollars in unfunded liabilities. We have been lied to and cheated out of our money and trust. And Obama wants that same government to control our health care. You are perfectly alright with that? Everything he has done since taking office has been a huge rush. Why? What’s the hurry? These are crucial issues involving ALL citizens liberty and happiness. He got 53% of the vote and I doubt he would get 50% today. Do you know him well enough to trust him with your life…your wife’s, your child’s?

    No one need dislike Obama, but that doesn’t mean we know him well enough to trust him with our futures or our country. He just doesn’t have the track record to have earned that trust and his compatriots Pelosi and Reid are seriously flawed individuals.

    However, busboy33, if you want to get this thread back to race baiting, let me ask you, how have the libs treated conservative Negroes and Hispanic/Latinos over the past 20 years?

  39. 39
    busboy33 Said:
    6:59 pm 

    Awwww . . . .conspiracies are more fun.

  40. 40
    funny man Said:
    9:40 pm 

    Busboy,
    agreed, especially with a few bottles of wine and a bunch of friends

  41. 41
    busboy33 Said:
    8:52 am 

    @cdor:

    “However, busboy33, if you want to get this thread back to race baiting, let me ask you, how have the libs treated conservative Negroes and Hispanic/Latinos over the past 20 years?”

    I certainly understand how shocked you must be as you interpret my question as race baiting. You managed to quote the first paragraph in my comment in #36, but for some reason you failed to quote the 2nd paragraph. You know, the one where I pointed out specific examples of people apparently going bananas over Obama’s race. I’m sure that’s only because you were so shocked at my 1st paragraph that you were unable to proceed any farther. I know you would never have deliberately ignored the uncomfortable examples on purpose, so it must have been my shocking question . . . you have my apologies.

    Of course, you also missed the specific examples I gave in #33, the one that was specifically adressed you. Easy to miss.

    “WHAT THE HELL DOES HIS SKIN COLOR HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING?”

    Funny . . . I thought that’s what I was asking.

    Do please leap to the moral high ground. I’m sure you are shocked (SHOCKED, I say!) that I am “race baiting”. I thought I was asking why specific commenters were specifically making racial allegations that I specifically detailed . . . but I guess I was wrong.
    Or, you’re ignoring the embarassing examples that I mentioned and are just bellowing to make them go away.
    . . . Nah, that can’t be it. Must be my fault. Silly me.

    “how have the libs treated conservative Negroes and Hispanic/Latinos over the past 20 years?”

    To try and answer your question . . . who? Could you narrow down your “conservative Negro and Hispanic/Latinos” so I can answer? I hope you are not maintaining that every single “conservative Negro and Hispanic/Latino” has been treated in exactly the same way by every single “liberal”.
    One does come to mind . . . Clarence Thomas. Was he shat on by “liberals”? Yes.
    Was it because he was a “conservative Negro”? No.
    I’m sure you disagree, and I’m also sure that some “liberal”, somewhere, called him an Uncle Tom. There is a difference between a person who is liberal and “Teh Libral Konspiracy”.
    Let me give you an example. There are Conservatives who compare Obama to a monkey (see the Curious George dolls waved at McCain rallies during the campaign as just one exemple). That’s a pretty racist thing to do. Does that make conservatives racist? No. Does it make the dickheads waving the dolls and laughing racist? Yes.

    “we were fighting a war on three fronts, Afghanistan, Iraq, and our Homeland . . .”

    Sorry — I missed the last one there. When did the Homeland front open up, and exactly who are we fighting in the Homeland?

    “. . . and Bush left with a 450 Billion dollar deficit after 8 years. Obama is quadrupling that. Are you comfortable? Is this how you would handle your own finances?”

    Am I comfortable with debt? Of course not. But turning my smart-ass filter off for a moment, I respectfully think you’re playing games with the numbers.
    Certainly, the health care reform is expensive, and I do put that at Obama’s feet — I also think it’s a good idea. I’ll certainly agree that the government is incompetent (not Obama . . . the government), but I believe that private insurance has failed more than the government. You are certainly free to disagree, but we’re talking about opinion now, not fact.
    Aside from healthcare reform, what deficit-increasing measures has he taken that wern’t directly a result of the ecconomic situation he inherited from Bush (which you admit was a trainwreck)? If I drive a car at a brick wall, then throw you behind the wheel just before the crash, you’re going to cause damage to the car. Is that your fault, or mine?
    You rail against Social Security and Medicare — how on Earth is that Obama’s fault?

    “We have been lied to and cheated out of our money and trust.”

    . . . and private, for-profit insurance companies haven’t?

    “Everything he has done since taking office has been a huge rush. Why? What’s the hurry?”

    The ecconomic stimulus measures were “rushed” because we were and still are in an ecconomic crisis. The healthcare reform is being “rushed” (although I fail to see how something that has been discussed for more than a decade qualifies as “in a hurry”) because he’s trying to get it done while it’s still possible to make it happen, before the lobbyists shut it down . . . and you damn well know it.

    ” Do you know him well enough to trust him with your life…your wife’s, your child’s?”

    Never met the man, never “looked into his soul”, so I suppose the answer to that is no. Of course, I can answer that question with a no for every single president that has ever been elected . . . so what makes him special?

    “No one need dislike Obama, but that doesn’t mean we know him well enough to trust him with our futures or our country.”

    As I said above, I don’t know any president well enough to trust them with the lives of me and mine . . . do you? Did you know Bush well enough (and if so, did you expect him to be such a complete fu@k-up or were you betrayed)? Did you you know McCain well enough?
    What “don’t you know” about Obama? What makes him so mysterious and shadowy? I assume you didn’t vote for Kerry or Gore. Was it because you didn’t know them well enough compared to Bush, or was it because you thought their policies sucked? What makes Obama different than any other Democratic politician?

    (*smart-ass filter re-engaged*)

    . . .y’know, aside from him being black. I’m sorry, a Negro. Which as you loudly declared is totally not an issue.

  42. 42
    cdor Said:
    6:12 pm 

    I presume you have an issue with my use of the word Negro. Caucasian, Negro, and Mongoloid are the correct names of the three major human races. The word, Negro, became politically incorrect in the 1960’s and the accepted slang terms became black and white. I have never met a black or a white person. I don’t know what we are supposed to call people of the Mongoloid race. Are they yellow people? “Professor Booker T. Washington, being politely interrogated … as to whether negroes ought to be called ‘negroes’ or ‘members of the colored race’ has replied that it has long been his own practice to write and speak of members of his race as negroes, and when using the term ‘negro’ as a race designation to employ the capital ‘N’ ” ["Harper's Weekly," June 2, 1906]. The NAACP is The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. I guess they need to change their name to Black people. Words do have proper meaning. A Negro should, in an unbiased world, be as comfortable as a Caucasian with the accurate naming of ones race.

    Back to the economy and Mr. Obama. We have been in numerous recessions over the last 80 years. The only one that led to a depression was caused by tremendous government interference similar in scope to what the current administration is attemmpting. You asked for reasons and I gave them. If they aren’t enough, so be it. That is exactly why guys like David Frum are traitors to my cause. They are used by people like you to defeat people like me. You don’t care about being free, you want government to lead your life. You are my enemy.

    Concerning govenrment run health care, a few words from Mark Steyn:
    The president needs to get something passed. Anything. The details don’t matter. Once it’s in place, health-care “reform” can be re-reformed endlessly.
    If this seems a perverse obsession for a nation with a weak economy, rising unemployment, and a war on two fronts, it has a very sound strategic logic behind it. That’s its attraction for an ambitious president: It redefines the relationship between the citizen and the state in a way that hands all the advantages to statists — to those who believe government has a legitimate right to regulate human affairs in every particular.
    How did the health-care debate decay to the point where we think it entirely natural for the central government to fix a collective figure for what 300 million freeborn citizens ought to be spending on something as basic to individual liberty as their own bodies?
    Freedom is messy. In free societies, people will fall through the cracks — drink too much, eat too much, buy unaffordable homes, fail to make prudent provision for health care, and much else. But the price of being relieved of all those tiresome choices by a benign paternal government is far too high.

    Government health care would be wrong even if it “controlled costs.” It’s a liberty issue. I’d rather be free to choose, even if I make the wrong choices.

    To anyone who isn’t a certifiable lib like our busboy, read the entire article at NRO:
    http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=YzlmYWZhMjZjZDAwYjMxOTZkZTNmODI5ZDAyZmExNDY=&w=MA==

    ps

    The third front of the war I described as our Homeland. Have you been to the remains of the Twin Towers? Have you taken a plane trip? Yes, our Homeland is the third front.

  43. 43
    busboy33 Said:
    3:13 pm 

    @cdor:

    I don’t care what terminology you use — I do find it amusing and horribly dating, but irrevelant. I understand you are standing behind behind your scientific objectivism (despite the fact that the scientific community has moved away from it since at least the 1970s) , but as this is a discussion on a political website (with occasional detours into that eternal optimist realm known as “Chicago sports”) and not Racial Classification 101, I use the common parlance. I would be amused though to see your strict adherence to classifications from several decades ago become the norm — watching the skinheads scream “Caucasian Power!” would be worth the price of admission.

    Out of curiosity — since Obama is 50% Caucasian and 50% Negro . . . why is he “classified” as a Negro? Why not Caucasian? Have fun with that. Free hint: any implication of “dilution” will really, really not end well.

    . . . and yet again, the question of the racially-tinged (I’m sorry, “classificationaly-oriented”) fears about Obama I ask about again and again fly completely under your radar. At this point, I have to assume you are implicitly conceeding that my fears are justified. Shame. I was honestly hoping I was simply being paranoid.

    Anyways, if you don’t want to discuss it, lets get back to what you do want to discuss.

    “That is exactly why guys like David Frum are traitors to my cause. They are used by people like you to defeat people like me. You don’t care about being free, you want government to lead your life. You are my enemy.”

    WOW. Psychosis much? Let’s see . . . where to begin . . . first, I never referenced Frum, so I never used him to “defeat” “people like you” (by the way, does this mean you’ve been defeated?). “I’m not sure what either “people like me” or “people like you” mean. I’m an American citizen, and I presume you are as well. I thought we were on the same team.
    So . . . anybody that disagrees with you is a traitor. An enemy. They must be vanquished. There is no dissent or debate. There can be no questions. To question is to become an enemy. Good to know.

    (for anybody following this thread: if you wonder the Repubs are chasing away everybody but the whack-a-doodles . . . I give you exhibit A)

    “It redefines the relationship between the citizen and the state in a way that hands all the advantages to statists — to those who believe government has a legitimate right to regulate human affairs in every particular.”

    So healthcare reform completely redefines the relation of citizens and their government . . . the government will now “regulate human affairs in every particular.” It must be a complete paradigm shift, because there is no program by the government currently that provides healthcare to citizens. This is a massive change, using MEDICal CARE to provide MEDICal AID to citizens . . . unheard of! Why next, they’ll start claiming they should providea SOCIAL SECURITY system. Of course, the very next step after that is dictating how many children you can have and what food you must eat.

    You might sound more credible if you didn’t jump from “I don’t like this policy” immediately to “it is the end of all that is good the Apocalypse is nigh”. Just a suggestion. Of course, this is a suggestion from your enemy, whom you must destroy . . . so take it with a grain of salt.

    “Freedom is messy. In free societies, people will fall through the cracks — drink too much, eat too much, buy unaffordable homes, fail to make prudent provision for health care, and much else. But the price of being relieved of all those tiresome choices by a benign paternal government is far too high.”

    Again, you go to the ultimate extreme — “being relieved of ALL those tiresome choices”. That’s nonsense, and easily demonstrated as nonsense.
    YOU, the great champion of freedom, use and rely on the government to aid you. Do you make your own roads and bridges? Socialist drone! Way to rely on the government to relieve you of all you messy choices. Police? Fire Departments? Product saftey? C’mon! quit being such a pathetic sheep! Do everything yourself. If you can’t . . . well, freedom is messy, isn’t it?

    HOW MUCH you should be aided by the government is a legitimate question . . . but your nonsensical hyperbole demeans your position.

    Whoops . . . just read the NRO article. I didn’t realize you entire healthcare comment was a quote (or actually multiple quotes). So I guess my response is directed to Steyn instead of you.
    As apparently your argument is “cuz Steyn said so” . . . why should I believe him? His article is an opinion piece. It contains no facts. All politicians that aren’t actively working to keep the healthcare industry at the status quo are not to be trusted. Why? Because they aren’t working to keep the healthcare industry at the status quo. No explanation about WHY the current system is better than changing it. I also find it odd that he rails against national healthcare . . . while he HAS national healthcare. You do know he’s Canadian, right? Although he spends time in New Hampshire, he has never become an American citizen.
    He’s not a political expert . . . he’s a writer. His background isn’t in political science, it’s in theater reviews. His opinion is fair, but why should I give him more credence than any other person? Aside from the fact that you agree with him, of course.

    “The third front of the war I described as our Homeland. Have you been to the remains of the Twin Towers? Have you taken a plane trip? Yes, our Homeland is the third front.”

    An attack 8 years ago by people that are not here does not a front make. For somebody that seems to revel in hyper-military imagery and terminology, I’m suprised you didn’t know that.

  44. 44
    funny man Said:
    6:05 pm 

    cdor,
    who appointed you to decide who is conservative and who is not? Nobody! You are at least as much a traitor than Frum by bringing up all that hyperbole and noise that will help loose elections for us but I’m sure you don’t care. You’d rather be cute and ohh so provocative.BTW, there are no three races as you should know from genome sequencing. Race is just an outdated concept that should find it’s way to the historic garbage heap.

  45. 45
    cdor Said:
    8:55 pm 

    I am neither trying to be cute nor provocative. I speak the same way to anyone at any time. I have never offended a Negro by calling them by their proper name when such designations are appropriate. Race may find it’s way to the historic garbage heap a million years from now, but until then I am comfortable with people being proud of who they are, not ashamed… using real words with accurate meanings rather than euphemisms and slang.

    The only reason Frum is ever discussed is because he criticized some Republican. When has anyone ever mentioned him in a discussion of Democrats promoting some wacked out big government legislation or because he has criticized a Democrat acting stupidly (using our President’s terminology)? If he “made his bones” promoting Republican and conservative philosophy and occassionally took exception to something a Republican said, well ok. But it seems to me that after being an unknown speechwriter for Bush, he quit or was fired and wrote a book that probably sold about 10 copies critical of Bush. He’s done not much more than criticize Palin and Levin since. Where am I wrong funny man and what do you believe that makes you a conservative?

  46. 46
    funny man Said:
    10:08 pm 

    cdor,
    if you want an example of how to discuss race in a ‘conservative’ context go here:

    http://www.amconmag.com/article/2003/feb/24/00025/

    I’m not a big fan of Frum either because he was a big proponent of the Iraq war. However, at present he is right in criticizing the anti-intellectual streak of some on the right. I don’t have a problem with you endorsing your view but I have a problem with you calling people traitors etc. There is no ‘conservative’ view e.g you could be on both sides of the Iraq issue. Sure, there are a few principles we agree on e.g. role of government, taxes etc. but a meaningful debate also means you respect your opponent. Palin is a good example; if some people think she is our great next hope, fine. Just don’t throw a temper tantrum if I’m not that convinced about her intellectual capabilities.
    If you think it is helpful to the Republican cause to insist calling people Negroes and mongoloid, I rest my case because then you can’t be helped. Whatever you might bring up like that is the proper name, is not going to alter the (probably correct) impression that the tone is racist. Haven’t really heard that many Asian Americans chanting ‘proud to be mongoloid’. Why do you insist on terms that were common a 100 years ago when the American society was clearly racist? Helping the cause? Come on, you know better.

  47. 47
    cdor Said:
    7:33 am 

    From your article:”In his second book, Authentically Black: Essays for the Black Silent Majority, John McWhorter goes further with his candid discussions on how many blacks, through self-defeating behavior, undermine their own ability to achieve. His work joins other studies that have helped to create a kind of genre for re-thinking aspects of the civil rights movement and exposing the excesses that have exemplified so much of the post-civil-rights period”

    One of those self-defeating behaviors, in my opinion, is re-naming themselves as Blacks. Why not Browns, which is much more accurate if we are going to reduce our race and resulting society simply to a color, at least use the correct color. Even if the color black were accurate, which of course it isn’t, it happens to invoke emotional connotations that are often negative. The term black is associated with evil, sinister, the dark side, lack of light (understanding), and many more. Then, of course, there is the polar opposite color, white. So now by using these two highly innaccurate colors to describe the two races, we have created a dichotomy where one doesn’t exist. We are all various shades of brown. If race is to go away, as you say it will, funny man, then using accurate descriptions of our skin colors will be quite helpful. I, for one, have decided that particpating in the popular jargon of the moment is not helpful in improving human relations. I hope you now understand my reasons.

    Admittedly, the Republicans had a very weak Presidential candidate. But his gravitas so far outweighed Barack Obama in both length (time) and quality, that even though most conservatives (which means probably not you) had to hold their collective noses do to McCain’s views on immigration, drilling in Anwar, and the Gang of 14, we still supported him because of the obvious ultra liberal candidate that was his opposition. He seemed the perfect moderate that the Frum’s and the Colin Powell’s , perhaps the Rick Morans (not sure on that), maybe even you, and certainly the media, could get behind. Instead Mr Frum decided to attack Palin. Why at that time was it necessary to throw cold water on a hot spark? Did he attack Biden? Did he ever write a column criticzing Obama?

    All parties have disagreements within. Our internal antagonists give me every indication ( I am speaking of Frum and Powell…don’t get me started with him) of fighting for the other side. I understand calling him a traitor is evocative. But go look up the definition for yourself.

  48. 48
    busboy33 Said:
    12:24 pm 

    “Even if the color black were accurate, which of course it isn’t, it happens to invoke emotional connotations that are often negative.”

    by the way, the accepted term when such classifications were used were Caucasoid, Negroid, and Mongaloid, so “Negro” isn’t the right term. Getting that out of the way . . .
    Re-read the quote above cdor. Carefully. I understand your “I shall never concede a mistake” mojo is working on full tilt, but take a deep breath and think reeeeeeeealy hard about why I read that and couldn’t help laughing out loud at you.

    “I have never offended a Negro by calling them by their proper name when such designations are appropriate.”

    Why, how omniscient of you.

  49. 49
    funny man Said:
    11:13 pm 

    cdor,
    ok, I applaud you for your good behavior (although this sounds sarcastic it is really meant as a compliment). Let’s hope we can get this race discussion behind us. Ultimately, people in the United States are categorized according to this county’s standard. However, this does not necessarily have any bearing to the outside world. So would you then say, Arabs, Jews, Ethiopians are what? Black, white, brown; they are all Semitic people. Are Kasachs, Turkmen, Turks Caucasian? Are Celtic people Caucasian? I thought it was Germanic people that came from the Caucasian mountains. Perhaps they are more related with Persian (Iran means Aryan BTW) than with Slavic people although Russ means Viking (from the Volga trade and the founding of the Russian empire). Anyway, see based on that, the American definitions are totally arbitrary. BTW, Negro comes from the Spanish word for black so I don’t see how that helps your cause. However, it has a negative historic connotation and I just don’t see a reason why I should disrespect anyone. Moreover, I don’t see how pissing people off gets you any closer to winning an election.
    I can tell you why I didn’t like McCain and that was because of his foreign policy. I think neocons really did us a big disservice. I didn’t want that again. Luckily, Bush also came to his senses in the second term when realists were once again in charge. His course then was not that different from the current administration and I know both liberal and conservative partisans are going to hate me for saying that. However, my appetite for any more ‘adventures’ is definitely gone. IMHO, that is a conservative viewpoint because studying history you will notice the fastest way to loose your empire is overextension and hubris.

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