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Patriotic Gestures

Falwell's worldview. Newt at the ready. Democrats in full retreat. Once more: Why stand by Bush? Plus much else.

5.18.07

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JERRY BUILT
Re: Hunter Baker's Falwell's Turnabout:

The author's references to Rev. Falwell's "gaffes" typically (along with most every other story I've read following his death) point to the Teletubbies incident and his comments on the cause of the 9/11 attacks. Why should these be considered "gaffes"? They are no more invalid than comments of, say, Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi. Like pronouncements from our congressional leaders, they arose out of Rev. Falwell's worldview. Because his worldview was the focus of the article, Mr. Baker erred in discounting these views.

The Teletubbies comments come closest to being justly ridiculed, but look beyond the surface. All four of the characters are portrayed as gender-neutral, but motions and body language suggest a masculine leaning (were the actors inside the costumes male?). That one carried a purse could be viewed as attempting to normalize gay behavior, a lifestyle that, according to the Scriptures that drove Rev. Falwell's worldview, was abominable. Maybe that's a stretch, but there was some basis to the assertion. The man was anything but crazy.

On the other hand, his comment about the 9/11 attacks should not have been the least surprising or considered even slightly outrageous. If, like Rev. Falwell, you believe in a just, righteous and holy God, who chastens those He loves, this is not a far-fetched concept. God punished His own people (Israel) many times by allowing her enemies to attack and kill her people. Whether the Left likes it or not, this nation was founded on principles established in the Bible, and its chief religion was Christianity (at least one of the original 13 states' constitution still directs that Christians should be preferred above others for public office!). Therefore, it should not seem outrageous at all that this same just, righteous and holy God would see fit to punish a people called by His name when their collective behavior so flagrantly violates his laws. Rev. Falwell, simply stated his logical belief as a warning to America to change its ways. He was not trying to be hurtful. Sometimes the truth hurts.

Please take a stand and stop trying to marginalize Rev. Falwell's views. He was a true patriot, a man who loved his country second only to his love for God, and always had her best interest at heart.
-- Mike Mawhorr
Mascoutah, Illinois

NEWT TO THE GAME
Re: James G. Poulos's Anarchy in the USA:

You work for a magazine that has kept us well apprised of the Clinton's shenanigans. So you should be well versed in the amazing story of how in only months, the Clinton's turned Newt's name from a thing of good to a thing of evil, and then proceeded to destroy Dole with Newt's evil name, long before the race even began. Grow government at twice the rate of inflation instead of thrice, and bombastically proclaim that you are cutting government -- 'twas easily spun into Newt stealing school lunches and throwing old folks into the street to live on dog food. Brag that you will force Clinton to accept your reductions, and allow Clinton to blame you for Clinton's shutting down government at Christmas time -- and get tagged as the Gingrich that stole Christmas, even though Clinton planned to do so long before Newt even opened his mouth. And in the midst of this debacle, complaining that Clinton would not see him during a free ride Clinton gave him on Air Force One, Newt got himself smeared as a whiner.

Maybe somebody was too busy having an affair to defend himself. Too bad he thinks that a good show of contrition will wipe the slate clean. We should forgive him, but we should not forget. Besides, unless he can show that his incompetence was directly due to his dalliance, his incompetence should not be wiped away with his sin. But admitting incompetence is very close to guaranteeing defeat, so it is not very likely that he will be asking us to forgive him that, nor asking us to believe he has learned from his mistakes.

I love Poulos's line, "No longer will Newt be the Lone Ditherer, the half-serious has-been who overthinks everything to compensate for not thinking anything through." That is a perfect description of the man. It fully explains why the Republican revolution's greatest feat (worst accomplishment) was to give the incompetent President and boy letch a good name.

The Clintons wrote the textbook on how to destroy Newt. Running Newt against Hillary will destroy the Republican Party. Please talk him out of his vain pursuit.
-- James Bailey
Knoxville, Tennessee

I'm a bit confused after reading this dissertation in narcissism. Was there any point to it beyond to display Poulos's brilliant word-smithing?

And yes, I am being sarcastic.
-- Richard Donley
New Lyme, Ohio

How about Fred for prez and Newt for vice prez? Anybody?
-- Jeff Rennie
Chesterhill, Ohio

DEMOCRAT DEFEAT
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.'s Do Nothing Democrats:

Bravo! Correct down to the last apostrophe. Mr. Tyrrell has it exactly right. I would add just one tiny footnote: After Ajima Pelosi returned from her heart to heart with Bashar Assad; she found she had no time to receive a briefing from General Petraeus, whom she considered small potatoes after her foray into high level foreign affairs.

I can't wait for Nana's next road trip to Tehran to dialogue with that great lover and respecter of womankind, President Ahmadinejad. (He'll probably demand that she wear the full burqa.) They will discuss the finer points of nuclear reactors and yellow cake.
-- Judy Beumler
Louisville, Kentucky

Whenever I watch the Democrats I get so worked up that I get out on the ranch and burn a pile of brush! It is all I can do to cleanse their traitorous talk from my heart. If I get out and do real manual labor then I feel I can remember what is real...and it surely isn't talk from Washington, D.C.

I have a son at war for his 5th time. He is a pilot in harm's way and to listen to the Dems defeat would be to lose heart. When they talk about the American public not liking or wanting this war, it is all I can do to not yell back. Of course in a poll about the war we wouldn't vote for liking war. Does anyone not see the stupidity of the question? Not even us military types or the families that wait at home for them would vote for war. That doesn't mean we want to lose in a war where America and freedom are at stake.

I defy anyone to show me a poll, even from the war years of WWII that would have "liked" the war. It was necessary, as this war is, to keep terrorists from our shore, or the better thought is to kill them where they live. What I'd like to see is some parents who have lost children in this war to bring a lawsuit against these malingering Democrats for reckless endangerment. This daring our enemies to defeat us only endangers those who are on the front lines.

And finally....we have a great President. He may not possess the double-tongued propensity our last President did but we, whose families serve, trust this man. He is stalwart and persists in that which is true and right. And we, whose children fight, hold that close to our hearts. As my son wrote, "We who serve know the seriousness of the threat and know the sacrifice that may be made to keep America free." He added, "That, dear mother, is enough for me."
-- Beverly Gunn
Proud Mother of serving Pilot
East Texas Rancher

If you'll notice, the Democrats only have a "defeatist" attitude when the opponent is a Marxist/Socialist/Communist tyranny or a crazed theocracy bent on the destruction of western civilization. As you well know they attack without fear or mercy when their object is to undermine the country from within.
-- Bob Ludwick

The good news for Democrats is their poll numbers are up with their main constituents -- al Qaeda, Arab/Muslim tyrants, Hugo Chavez and tinhorn Latin American dictators, Chinese communists and Eurabian Quislings. But don't count them out yet. The crackup in the conservative movement is providing them an opportunity to seize more political power and hold onto it for generations. Thus insuring taxes rise, Islamic imperialism is appeased, criminals are released, abortions increase, homosexuals marry, neo-pagan environmentalism becomes the de facto state religion, pork and entitlement spending soars, military readiness declines and the sellout "conservatives" (Bruce Bartlett and Pat Buchanan) and punish Republicans "conservatives" (Reagan critic Richard Viguerie) are happy, fat and rich.
-- Michael Tomlinson
Jacksonville, North Carolina

When Nancy Pelosi was chosen Speaker I Iaid in a supply of "splits" of champagne to toast each faux pas the benighted dilettante of the Democrat Party was destined to make. Frankly, I can't keep up with her and stay sober, even on splits.

Each day that dawns we have it re-confirmed. They are all wind-up and no pitch.
-- Diane Smith
South San Francisco, California

BUSH: WHY BOTHER?
Re: Quin Hillyer's Back Bush Now:

Having read the piece on "Back Bush Now," telling us conservatives that we need to back Bush now to save the 2008 race. I must say that this is pure BS. Bush has turned his back on us conservatives for years. He has taken us for granted and now needs us. He has never taken National Security seriously, if he did then he would have secured our ports and borders -- still wide open.

Now him (Bush) and the Senate Republicans are talking amnesty for illegal. If they (Republicans) expect our vote in 2008, they can think again. This is the last issue with me and certain other conservatives. Many of us are to the point where they do not listen to what we the American people want (enforce and secure our borders). If Immigration Reform goes through as expected with the usually concessions to Democrats -- I am through supporting and voting for Republicans.

Given how close elections have been these days, I do not believe Republicans can afford to have people like me sit out elections in key states like Ohio and Florida. I have been voting Republican since 1974 when I could first vote. But to paraphrase Ronald Reagan "I did not leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party has left me."
-- Anthony Sestito
Reynoldsburg, Ohio

That American Spectator senior editor Quin Hillyer now finds it necessary to lecture "conservatives" on what SHOULD be readily apparent -- that one backs one's president in time of war to the hilt -- is sad beyond the power of words to describe.

There was a time not so long ago when "Conservative" and "Patriot" were synonyms. The Great Communicator, for example, did not need to waste his time explaining the obvious to the patriots of this country. He was thus able to concentrate his fire on congressional Democrats to good effect.

Whether one is a paleocon (like me) or a neocon (WHATEVER the hell that is), a basic Darwinian fact of life is going to have to be comprehended and acted upon by real people real soon: anyone who is stumped trying to figure out which side of this war he should be on is too stupid to survive .... either politically or literally.

If history of the last forty years is any guide, most of the draft dodging, shaggy faced, slope shouldered, sandal shod, Good Will attired, squeaky voiced, tattooed, ear ringed, metal studded, gray hair pony tailed, dope smoking malingerers, malcontents, vagrants, freaks, misfits, weirdos and oddballs that constitute the base of the Democrat/Cry Baby Boom cohort will NEVER figure this out. They will as usual content themselves to slither into their customary role as parasites, riding on the backs of those who create the wealth that makes our capitalist economy work in time of peace and who step up to defend America in time of war. With the expectations of normal people so low, Democrats will thus pay little or no penalty for giving aid and comfort to those now shooting at our troops in engaged in combat any more than they did in the Vietnam era and normal people would be foolish to waste their time in hopes that these freaks will come to their senses anytime soon.

Indeed some flaky congressional districts are SOOOOO whacked out that never-never-land incumbents like Pelosi never have to worry about being held accountable for results. They will be constantly re-elected based on the piety and tonnage of the precious good intentions their staff PR machines churn out 24/7/365 and to hell with consequences. Consequences are thought -- by exalted voters in these elitist kultursmog congressional districts -- to be the province of such lesser beings as policemen, firemen, and other first responders; regular and reserve soldiers, sailors, marines, air men; national and coast guardsmen; and the like.

Conservatives, on the other hand, had better wake up and decode this in one quick hurry or they will soon go the way of their ancestral Whigs.

And woe betide America if that happens.

We are in mortal peril and cannot afford to let Atlas shrug.

We dare not fail the Darwinian sniff test.
-- Thomas E. Stuart
Kapa'au, Hawaii

Quin's right on every point (of course). I just wish I had some confidence that Republicans, as presently constituted, could pull it off.

The weakest link appears to be the House Republican caucus, where a number of representatives are ready to defect on Iraq, supposedly because "the people back home" are upset and they fear for "the party" (read: "their jobs").

Their logic is perverse -- no matter what happens, abandoning the President on Iraq will doom them to defeat because they won't be able to hold their base: if the surge succeeds, the Republican base will hold their cowardice against them; if the surge fails, the base will hold them responsible for bringing about that failure.

If they had any sense (of course, they're far more intelligent & sophisticated than us fly-over rubes), they'd realize they're doomed unless we're successful in Iraq & they'd get behind the effort.
-- Brad Bettin
Melbourne, Florida

With respect -- with condolences, actually -- to Mr. Quin Hillyer, I must say that the events of the past two days are a marvelous example of why I find it so difficult to trust Republicans, and why I gave up long ago trusting GW Bush.

On the 16th of May, Mr. Hillyer posted his article to this site, calling for conservatives to rally around the president. The very next day, Mr. Bush lent his support to the Senate's plan for allowing Mexico to recover the border states. (And he calls himself a Texan?!!?) Time and again -- and again and again -- when conservatives rally to the elephant's banner, they end up with a knife between their shoulder blades.

Mr. Hillyer's article did not address the issues of immigration and border security. (Mr. Hillyer, did you suspect it would be unwise to do so, sir?) He addresses how Mr. Bush deserves our support in the areas of defense against terror, a healthy economy, and resistance to Democratic misgovernance.

This is all very well. BUT -- without secure borders, all of the above is effort wasted.

Mr. Hillyer briefly mentions "English as our common language" as one item in a grab bag of battles worth fighting to attract conservative support -- thus tacitly admitting that the battle has not yet been joined by this president and party.

I'll grant -- for now, anyway -- that there is some difference between the Republican and Democratic Parties. What I've come to doubt is that there's enough difference to cover the gas I'd burn driving to the polling place next year.
--- Byron Keith

Quin Hillyer replies:
I have been surprised how many readers have not understood a central point of my column, namely that rallying around Bush on the areas where he remains conservative is important not as much for Bush's sake as for our own. Our political future will be greatly affected by Bush's, whether we like it or not. Plus, support is not an all-or-nothing thing. All too often, people either make a pro or con decision on a leader and then let that color their whole approach to politics. What's needed is a series of pro or con decisions on each particular issue, no matter who is on which side of that issue. So, if a leader disappoints overall, but tries to do the right thing on an important issue, he deserves all the support we can give on that issue no matter what one's overall view of him. To do otherwise -- to fail to support Bush on those issues where he still does take conservative stances, out of pique at his other failings -- is truly to cut off our noses to spite our faces.

NO SECT, PLEASE
Re: Jay W. Molyneaux's letter (under "The Moral Authority") in Reader Mail's State of the Race:

Just to let Mr. Jay W. Molyneaux know in his reply to the article on Jerry Falwell, Rev. Falwell was not a member of the Church of God, but a Baptist. It also is certainly not a sect but a denomination.

Thanks,
-- Ruth Warren
Canal Fulton, Ohio

ROAD TRIP
Re: Jay D. Homnick's A Sport Goes to Israel:

If Sandy Koufax agrees to pitch in the Israel Baseball League, Wlady Pleszczynski will have a traveling companion to go there to see him... and I am not even Jewish.
-- Warren Mowry

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