Re: Lisa Fabrizio’s Fredheads:
Now, calm down Lisa. You’re supposed to wait until the boy asks you.
— Mike Showalter
Senator Thompson will get into the presidential race based on: “… rumor has it that his possible candidacy is contingent on the faltering of McCain’s.” In the eyes of even comatose conservative Republicans, McCain faltered long ago.
Just wait until the opposition unleashes McCain’s involvement in the S&L scandal of the late ’80s. McCain has more baggage than any of the other Republicans currently seeking the nomination. Remember his pathetic; “Veteran Town Hall Apology for Iraq meeting” with defeated halfwit Republican Mike DeWine? His reaction to his own malfeasance is to say: “…yeah, you got me.” McCain then goes hat in hand to his enemies and the media giving up more principled turf.
McCain is living in denial if he thinks the nomination is his. He has little real support now. Fred Thompson is the only horse in this race and it is gratifying to let the pretenders exhaust themselves now. Except for McCain, the also-rans may have a shot at the VP nomination or they can vie for a spot over at FEMA.
— P. Aaron Jones
Huntington Woods, Michigan
I believe I have figured out why many conservative Republican voters are so instinctively uncomfortable with John McCain and Rudy Giuliani. We are, of course, looking for a leader in the mold of Ronald Reagan. Someone who will protect the Constitution and govern with the utmost restraint. We want a President whose domestic policies will get the federal government off our backs and out of our lives. Give me a Calvin Coolidge, please.
John McCain has repeatedly shown he is more interested in results that Constitutional restraints. He has simply ignored the First Amendment when inconvenient. As President, how else would he exceed the powers granted by the Constitution? Who knows? That’s why I won’t be voting for him in the primaries this time (he got my vote in 2000).
We have the same reservations about Rudy. The job he did as Mayor of NYC was spectacular. The way he did it, bullying government, isn’t what I want from a President on domestic policy. I applauded the way he used the NYPD to restore order but I’m very reluctant to turn over control of the FBI and ATF to him.
As you mentioned in your article, Senator Thompson does not thirst for the job — what real conservative wants to work for the government? His manner and his record show he would seek to minimize government, not use as a bludgeon.
— Chris B.
P.S. Fred Thompson a had an article regarding illegal immigration in yesterday’s NRO.
I can’t be the only one who thinks “Hunt for Fred October” was a very fine line. Good job Ms. Fabrizio. Coming from Wisconsin we are dealing with our own “Thompson” who surely must be seeking a VP slot but says otherwise. Tommy did a good job for us here but he sure doesn’t have the “gravitas” to make the climb to the top of the ticket in this voter’s opinion. Fred October
— Roger Ross
Concerning “Fredheads” by the wonderful Lisa Fabrizio:
Jim Gilmore…Fred Thompson, it’s about time we got some real conservatives in this race! I am excited about both of these men, and Lisa’s article did an excellent job of showing why we should not be backed into Rudy McRomney while there are more conservative candidates like Fred Thompson. I think the Republican Party should be doing everything in its power to bring men like this to prominence so we can see a true conservative on the ticket.
— Adam Jones
We conservatives who have been terribly unhappy with the current roster of candidates for President are beginning to feel there maybe hope for us yet.
Fred Thompson is one Tennessean I can be proud of. He is conservative to the teeth and does remind me somewhat of Ronald Reagan. I guess if we can’t have Tony Snow we will settle for Fred. Now that is a settlement I would take any day, any time.
Come on Fred give it a chance. There are plenty of us out here who are hoping you will throw your hat into the ring.
— J. Sherrill
Giuliani is not electable (I’m a New Yorker and like him). McCain and Romney won’t beat the Hillary storm troopers. Fred can whup Hillary like a mangy dog or politely and with dignity trounce Obama.
— Chris Buckley
Keep it coming, Lisa. Are you going to be the head cheerleader on the right? If so, I will help in any way possible. (I could tend to the Gatorade supply). Pair this fine gentleman with the right veep (like J.C. Watts, for instance), and we could see good things happen. Oh, and he can speak in complete and coherent sentences.
— Ken Shreve
When Lisa Fabrizio states “While his views on illegal immigration are a bit vague…” in her column, it shows how “behind the times” some writers can be. The average reader can easily do the research and, viola, find out what Sen. Thompson stated on the show the other day.
He was spot-on concerning the illegal invasion. He used such phrases as “protect the border” (multiple times); “no amnesty”; and no citizenship until the offender returns to his home country and gets in line behind the rest. In other words, no pathway for Fred!
Each time I see the good Senator on TV, he’s firing on all the right cylinders.
Looks like Mr. Tancredo finally has a run for his money on the issue.
— Owen H. Carneal, Jr.
Lisa Fabrizio replies:
Behind the times I may be, but Mr. Carneal might also have found this report card on Thompson from Americans for Better Immigration which gives him only a “C” rating for his votes on the issue. That said, I’m willing to give Fred the benefit of the doubt since he’s been out of the Senate for some time and, as Carneal pointed out, is sounding much better lately.
Re: Laurie Mylroie’s What Is Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Saying?:
Former Clinton campaign Iraq adviser Laurie Mylroie was America’s “Cassandra” of the 1990s. She correctly discovered terrorist Ramzi Yousef’s plant in Kuwaiti government files by Iraqi Intelligence during the 1990 occupation. She traced fellow terrorist Abdul Yasin back to Iraq after the 1993 WTC bombing, and U.S. troops found his payment records in Tikrit after the invasion a decade later. She has repeatedly noted how the terror attacks in the early 1990s were never tied to al Qaeda. Ms. Mylroie, in her post 9/11 book Bush vs. the Beltway, quoted U.S. scientists who found the weaponized anthrax mailed to Congress far more sophisticated than any ever seen, beyond the scope of individuals. She predicted the attempts by the CIA to discredit the war on terror in Iraq. Many other predictions she has made have come to pass, and yet she is cursed to be disbelieved.
— Tim O’Neill
Pompano Beach, Florida
EARLY AMBULANCE CHASING
Re: Michael Fumento’s John Edwards vs. Babies and Moms:
Points well made and well taken. My compliments to the author.
— David Shoup
Mr. Fumento spotlights the foundation of liberal values. “If to get where we want to go facts must be ignored or distorted, that is desirable because we are working on behalf of _________.” Fill in a special interest group.
The trial lawyers add a second and equally important postulate as well. “If any one questions our lack of honesty and ethics, call them names.”
Hell of a way to make a living — liberalism, I mean.
— Jay Molyneaux
Denver, North Carolina
It’s bad enough hearing this stuff about Edwards, but on top of that, I came across this article by John Stossel. He mentions a lawyer that sued Dow Corning over breast implants; the lawyer now owns a warehouse with over 900 “valuable cars.” Even though further studies showed no link between the use of silicone in implants with ANY associated cancers, and the fact that these same silicone implants are again approved for usage, the lawyer in question was both “proud” of what he did and, of course, won’t return any of the millions or possibly billions he made scaring the ignorant.
Edwards is correct in one way regarding his “two Americas”: there are the lawyers who are prepared to lie their way to millions, and there are human beings. I’m happy and proud to be in the latter category.
I won’t be the first to quote Old Bill: “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.” Cade thought this lack of lawyers would be part of the Utopia he would create upon crowning himself king. I don’t believe Utopia is at all possible, but in the case of killing lawyers, I’m willing to give this one a chance.
— Karl F. Auerbach
While 90% of Mr. Fumento’s points on the ugly side of malpractice litigation make me say “thanks a lot, John” — especially the part about $250K in malpractice premiums — I don’t think trial lawyers are the entire cause of the rise in cesareans.
After a recent emergency cesarean, we simply told people it was a C-Section, with none of the stressful detail. I was shocked to see how many women had a knee-jerk, “Oh, I didn’t know you scheduled one” response.
Maybe it’s just California, but around here there is an obvious, and growing, trend to schedule C-Sections out of convenience. The procedure now goes quickly, cleanly, and even dare I say, routinely.
Once a woman who gets word C-sections are as fast as, as safe as, and less painful than natural delivery, and date certain to boot, who’s to blame her for scheduling the surgery?
And an OB/GYN whose Board says the major surgery poses no more risk to the mother or child can’t be called complicit either: if the risk is equally balanced between two options, no sane doctor would advise against the option where his potential for liability might be lower.
There may be a moral question about the rising rate and the driving force behind it. Some women want the experience of delivery, others don’t feel compelled. As for my two cents, if we say nothing about the many methods of scheduling an entire pregnancy for greater convenience, can we judge a mother for choosing the more convenient option at the final moment of those 9 months?
— Erik Litvinchuk
* Please note that, for all the connotations it carries in this context, I did NOT say “avoiding.”
First, if you’ve got to ask how callous he’d be to mother and their babies, then maybe you don’t sense the depth of what appears to be his shallowness and chameleon-like persona when it comes to saying or doing what people want — if that’ll get him elected.
Second, given that he’s a Democrat and liberal, as well as class-warfare specialist — and given that the cows will be driving home before the Dems change or abandon their abortion plank — I’d say he’s very callous about and will continue to be so to the most vulnerable of us all: the unborn.
It’s truly frightening to think that he’s not just running for the Dems’ presidential-nominee nod, but that he, molded in what appears to be liberal stamp of “don’t let facts or truth get in the way,” and others actually think he’s got some chance of winning.
— C. Kenna Amos
Princeton, West Virginia
— Doug Santo
Re: Doug Bandow’s Seoul Repair:
Let’s not forget that the South Koreans are in the process of reducing their military by 100,000 troops as well as reducing the term of service for their soldiers. Why do we need to be there?
— Chris Buckley
THE EXITS ARE BLOCKED
Re: G. Tracy Mehan, III’s No Way Out:
The “enlightened ones” at the Heritage Foundation’s “Iraq: The Way Ahead” are dispirited because they expected too much from Iraq. For example, Cordesman views the Iraqi government as “a command kleptocracy.” But he should look around at other Arab governments. Which ones are not command kleptocracies? None! Abuse of power, corruption, and ethnic/religious violence are the Arab way. If Arabs have no problem with it, why should we? We have dethroned a dictator and set up a functioning democracy. I call that a great victory. Now the “enlightened ones” want us to remake Arab culture in our image by eliminating the very things that make Arab culture Arabic. We have won a tremendous victory in Iraq. Let’s celebrate and leave! And let Iraq be Arab.
— Roger D. McKinney
Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
Today’s piece on the pessimism-tinged debate at the Heritage Foundation presents some welcome clarifying perspectives on the foreign policy conundrum of Iraq, the Middle East, and the current global conflict between the West and a rising uber-radicalized subset of Islam. Once the U.S. made two fateful decisions; to outsource our energy supply to a region that is a sinkhole of pathologies and then to assume protection of the Persian Gulf sea lanes through which 40 per cent of the world’s oil passes, we had hugged the tar baby firmly. Once engaged, extrication from its sticky grasp is difficulty to the 10th power, as we now see. It would be welcome to see the debate include a greater consideration of the vital national interests of the United States which are very much at stake here. Until we come up with bold initiatives to replace petroleum as an energy source, we shall be forever in thrall to Middle East despots such as the Saudis and to thugs like Hugo Chavez. This seems to be an ironic fulfillment of Lenin’s quip that the Soviet communists would sell the West the rope for its hanging.
— Frank Stevenson
This piece strikes me as a fair and level headed summary of a fair and level headed debate about the future of Iraq. The notion that there is “no way out” for America in the near future is exactly right.
Embrace it. The U.S. is the sole super power. We have significant interests in the Middle East that include economic, strategic and geopolitical factors. We cannot pull out from Iraq and pretend everything will be OK in our absence and that the resulting chaos will not have direct negative implications for American interests.
Serious policy makers and analysts should focus on how to achieve American goals in the region rather than the constant complaining. Instead of the refrain “if only they had followed my advice” and the constant attempts to absolve themselves of any blame in the affair, analysts should offer up well reasoned and realistic proposals that describe alternate paths to success. Every American has a stake in a positive outcome. This is not Bush’s war or the neocons’ war, this is America’s war. Let’s pull together and win it.
The partisan bickering in Washington is a disgrace.
— Doug Santo
FIRST THEY CAME FOR THE SEX OFFENDERS
Re: Ralph R. Reiland’s Scarlet Plates:
Has it occurred to anyone that identifying a given car as a “sex offender’s car” would be punishing everyone who rides in that car or drives it? Wouldn’t a license plate that screams “pervert” be an open invitation to vandalize that car or run it off the road? How much to insure a car with the Mark of the Beast?
And hey, since we’re now in the business of punishing people forever, why not special punitive license plates for smokers, for people who are obese (by whatever measurement they’re using this week)? Or whose cholesterol is too high? AIDS is contagious; doesn’t John Public have a right to know if the car next to him has it? Surely it would help the EMTs do on-the-spot triage for accidents and such. Old people who lose their reflexes are an increasing menace on the roads- why not a special geriatric license plate? Downs syndrome? People whose ‘carbon footprint’ is too big?
But wait a minute: once the evildoer gets out of the car, he’s invisible again. The hell with license plates, let’s brand ’em on the face, like in the good old days of the Inquisition! Thief, adulterer, heretic, runaway slave… The witch hunt never stops, they just find new witches every so often . And it’s all just fine until they pull YOUR description out of the hat.
— Martin Owens
TALKIN’ ‘BOUT THEIR GENERATION
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.’s 2008: The Battle for a Generation:
I just read the excerpt from your latest book. Wonderful analysis, and I have ordered it.
With regards to your thesis of a generational conflict, I think you will enjoy the following:
After the 2004 election, C-Span was airing one of many panels devoted to a post-mortem of the election results. On one of them Brad Carson, the OK congressman who had just lost the Senate race to Tom Coburn, was a participant. In his analysis of his loss, after comparing his fairly close race to Kerry’s abysmal performance against Bush, Carson made the following statement:
“I believe that we (Democrats) will never win a national election until the last Democrat who came of age during the Vietnam era has died.”
I was watching the show late at night, political junky that I am, but was stunned at the brilliance and clarity of the statement. I think it’s one for the ages. I immediately grabbed a pen and wrote it down…so I believe I have it verbatim, but I might be off by a word or two.
I think it would be wonderful, for a future column, to contact Mr. Carson, see if he can provide you with a transcript, and ask him what he thinks of his party’s performance today. He’s kept a low profile since the loss, with only the occasional op-ed piece.
— Kenneth L. Kosyk
Chappaqua, New York
I read with interest your latest article drawn from your book about the battle between the factions of the ’60s generation. It spooky how only a couple years can make such a discussion seem so dated. The fact is that our generation — I am from that most contentious of cohorts — is no longer relevant.
Time and experience have discredited both the Big Welfare Machine and the Big War Machine. For voters under forty all the contention you write about is ancient history about a generation that often resent baby boomers for hogging the limelight. Fewer and fewer voters care very much about either side of issues our generation fought so bitterly about.
The nuances of racial politics (e.g. quotas or affirmative action), the sexual revolution, and certainly the various shades of pink or green are all but lost on modern voters. “Welfare moms” and “NASCAR dads” are as quaint as “anarchist” (as an epithet) and “rock-ribbed Republican” were to our generation. Get over it, they are saying, the Cold War, Vietnam and government regulation of the means of production are history.
Let’s face it, whatever we did to the country for good or ill — and I believe we did much of both — our day is lost and gone. It was only your article that made me realize this. So, thank you for the wake up call.
The huge outpouring of interest in Barack Obama is symptomatic of the change in the political culture. I have no idea whether he will actually be elected or even nominated, but he has stirred a great longing among people in the generations that followed ours hunger for change in the terms of the debate. It is for that reason that I think that neither Hillary nor any Republican “conservative” (whatever that means these days) stirs the same kind of passion.
In the meantime, I am sure new battle lines between new “conservatives” and new “liberals’ will be drawn over new issues. But our generation has had it. I am afraid your book will only sell well in nursing homes.
— Garrison Moore
LOOK FOR THE UNION LABEL
Re: Eric Peters’s We Can Work Out:
Back around ’61 Walter Reuther made some very intemperate and nasty comments about the status of our United States in the scheme of things, ‘n I said I would refrain from buying any more vehicles that his UAW had any part in.
So I bought a BMW coupe. Turned out to be the worst car I ever owned; the very worst!
A little later, after the displeasure had dissipated some, the ’63 Chrysler was probably the best car I ever owned. Had everything ‘cept cruise control, and I recall my wife asking when we’d get there on a jaunt to Vegas. Saw a sign that said 46 miles, and we were going, what, 105 miles-per-hour?!? And the 383 wasn’t even breaking a sweat. That was cruising — only topped by the ’70 New Yorker, and the ’72 Imperial a few years after.
And now we see the present leader of the UAW spouting his anti-American crap. Miserable bastard! So, I again refuse to buy a new U.S. car, even though my brother-in-law works for one of the not-so-Big-Three.
Isn’t that sad?
DON’T FEED THE RANTERS
Re: Jay Molyneaux’s letter (under “Baby Boom, Hillary Bust”) in Reader Mail’s Boomer Showdown:
Can I come to your next dinner party? Short of that, would you please video it and put it on YouTube?
I think we grew up in the same small upstate NY town. I’ve had to stop talking altogether to some very longtime friends because of their rantings and ravings and hatred. They do not listen to what you have to say because they are too busy doing what I call “putting another one in the chamber”.
Hooray for you for having the backbone to ask your ranter to leave!!
— Joan Moriarty
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