Re: Michael Fumento’s TV and Tykes Don’t Mix:
One thing I’ve always said about cable TV: “It takes you twice as long to find out there’s nothing on.”
— P. Aaron Jones
Huntington Woods, Michigan
BIG TENT COLLAPSE?
Re: Andrew Cline’s The Task at Hand:
I agree with your assessment. The Era of the Big Tent is over. The Big Tent requires “moderation,” i.e. compromising conservative principles to elect what we hope is a conservative president. Conservatives should bolt the GOP and form a party based on, well, principles. True, it’s going to be a smaller tent. At least we would return to a two-party system. (In fact, I’d like to see many parties on both ends of the political spectrum.) And so what if we don’t capture the presidency? If we can persuade enough conservative Democrats to abandon their party, we might achieve a kind of parliamentary voting block sufficient to make life miserable for the (thanks Michael Savage) Demicans and Republicrats — and their president. If the new party’s legislators eventually succumb to the pleasures of Beltway approbation and legal (and some illegal) bribery like the current bunch, we vote them out or break away yet again.
— Terry Robb
As a resident of Texas, I’m not surprised by W. He is a big government guy, just like his dad. Who can forget his attack on conservatism with the politically correct slogan “compassionate conservative”? That slogan to me was as infuriating as Clintons “we didn’t pay our fair share” class warfare attack. I still consider Reagan’s greatest mistake the choice of George Sr. as VP. George Sr. is a great guy but he is a big government guy.
I always thought Cheney was a conservative, but you have to look at where he came from. Chief of Staff for Gerald Ford? We were hoodwinked.
The legendary money manager Peter Lynch was fond of noting that most Americans spend more time planning their next vacation than they do planning their financial futures. I would add that most Americans spend even less time, virtually none, actually examining the voting records of their senators and congressmen and comparing those records to the politicians’ campaign promises and, more importantly, to the voter’s own wishes. Yet this is not hard to do, nor does it take a great deal of time — as elections draw nearer there are scads of sources for this information, from local newspapers to hundreds if not thousands of websites.
So many issues these days, so many votes in Congress, have major, gargantuan implications for both our near-term and long-term future: spending bills laden with obscene levels of pork; decisions on development of domestic energy sources; further expansion of entitlement programs; immigration, to name just a few. If you don’t know specifically where your guys stand on these matters, and more importantly how they have acted to either advance or defeat them, then in good conscience you should find out before you vote.
Do your homework, assay the record in total (recognizing that sometimes everybody has to go along to get along), and if the record does not match up pretty well with what you want and what you thought you were getting, well then off with his or head, and let the chips fall where they may, so-called party “loyalty” be damned.
Too many of those folks in Washington will never get the message until threat is turned into action.
— C. Vail
I totally agree with Andrew Cline’s “The Task at Hand,” of 2 June.
After the GOP took both Congress and Senate after 40 years of the Dems’ terror, WE HAD IT ALL!!!! And what did you do with it? YOU SQUANDRED IT!!!!
As a conservative Pennsylvanian, my husband and I felt betrayed when our president, George W. Bush, and my Senator, Senator Rick Santorum, supported Arlen Specter instead of of Pat Toomey, a real conservative. Specter won by a small margin and many of us feel that Toomey could have won if President Bush and Senator Santorum had not supported Specter, with his liberal ideologies.
If there is a Republican candidate worthy of any part of our retired income, that’s who gets our money — not the GOP RINOs. Hopefully, that candidate will be George Allen of Virginia. Prior to moving to Pennsylvania, we lived in Northern Virginia and what we saw of Allen, we liked.
Someone once said, “We have a two party system. The evil party and the stupid party. We Republicans are the stupid party.” But don’t take advantage of us for too long. Our patience is beginning to wear thin.
— Stella L. Jatras
Camp Hill, Pennsylvania
Long ago, I advocated that conservatives take bold action to consolidate their power within the Republican Party and to purge from it enough of what many call Republicans in Name Only (who, in truth, are “country-club” Rockefeller Republicans) that the rest would understand not only who brought the party its majority, but who ran the party.
Obviously the conservatives did not do that. Either they bought into the rhetoric that doing so would endanger the Republican majority, they failed to see the need, or they simply lacked the courage. They, and the American people, are now paying the price for their inaction.
Now the country-club Republicans are launching a series of attacks against the conservative wing of the GOP. In Missouri, they have heavily backed a divisive stem cell referendum that is bound to harm conservative Senator Jim Talent’s re-election effort. In Washington, they pushed through the Senate an even more divisive guest-worker and illegal alien amnesty bill.
Do we hear the same criticism of the country-clubbers’ actual attempt to take control of the GOP that we heard of a potential consolidation of power by the conservatives? I have not.
They say politics makes strange bedfellows. It is becoming more apparent that the so-called “moderate” country-club Republicans detest conservatives nearly as much as does the liberal/progressive/left, and they are willing, if not eager, to act in concert with the lefties to destroy what they see as a common enemy.
The Republican Party is approaching the same crossroads that the Whigs did in the 1840’s. Which of its principal factions is going to control the party? And is the other faction willing to remain subservient to the one in control? Clearly the country-clubbers are not willing to remain subservient. They have for years, and especially in the Senate, done everything they could to provide advantage to the Democrats and to frustrate Republican leadership.
The current Republican Party includes those of three philosophies: (1) “moderates” who are in truth big government tax and spend liberals, just to a slightly lesser degree than Democrats, (2) conservatives, and (3) libertarians. Conservatives and libertarians probably agree on more issues than does either with the “moderates.” Perhaps they should “agree to disagree” on their major sticking point, which is the libertarians’ refusal to have government address moral issues such as recreational drug use, and unite on the others to overcome the liberal Dems and the almost-as-liberal so-called Republican “moderates.”
It’s time for the conservatives to regain firm control of the Republican Party. Does it really matter if Maine is represented in the Senate by Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, who speak and vote like Democrats while claiming to be Republican, or by two actual Democrats? Will the Presidential candidate who benefits most from John McCain’s constant undercutting of Bush be a Republican, or Hillary Rodham Clinton? Conservatives have little to lose by driving the RINO (Republicans in Name Only) faction out of office and, if necessary, out of the party. A Republican Party that would sell America to the highest bidder is no more worth preserving than was a Whig Party that allowed millions to remain enslaved. If self-labeled GOP “moderates” want to engage in mortal combat, let’s have that fight now rather than later when it is China to whom they would sell us.
— Steve Fernandez
Trust the Union Leader editor. Since our state is increasingly “Blue” due to transplants from away (Yes that means Mass.), I find the Cline’s article particularly note worthy, and simply wish to say; “AMEN.”
— Ken Shreve
Thanks, Andrew. As a long-time Republican voter I agree wholeheartedly! Actually, I am ready for a good truly conservative third party
— Mel Evans
I got another fax yesterday from Tom DeLay’s office asking for more money in their time of crisis to defeat the liberal Democrats… I laughed out loud. I realize now that I was always libertarian, now I’m a card carrying one. Since I was old enough to vote, I always voted Republican (sometimes holding my nose at the ballot box). It was a means to a conservative end. I always told myself to consider the alternative…if only the Republicans could hold both Houses of Congress and the White House…think of what could be done. Well now we know what can be done, and from now on I’m going to vote my conscience. I suspect that very little in Washington will change either way, but I’ll sleep well at night.
— Tom Bledsoe
As regards Andrew Cline’s highly readable article “The Task at Hand,” his thoughts are too little, too late. Within the Constitution-busting two-party system Conservativism is DOA!
— Paull Palmer
THE LAW OF POLITICS
Re: Lawrence Henry’s Why We Call It “Amnesty”:
Yes!!! Great wit, nice sarcasm. Your point was dead on target in every way.
— M.L. Gilbert
When the likes of a Senator Schumer or Kennedy rant about how there is one set of rules for the rich and powerful and another set for the ordinary working citizen, poor person, or senior citizen, they are absolutely correct. That is the inconvenient fact brought out in the debate surrounding the immigration fiasco and also the flap over the FBI conducting a search of a Congressman’s office under the authority of a judicial warrant. The rub is that politicians like Schumer and other liberals and “moderates” see the situation and then reach the wrong conclusion from it.
The politicians see not people, but potential voters, and they wish to give amnesty to those that will vote the “right” way. Business decision makers see labor costs and determine to reduce them, regardless of what that entails. The elite of society, whether by wealth, position, or education see jobs around the house that need doing and conclude that there simply must be a serf class to do them for next to slave wages. Heaven forbid that Madam should ruin her nail polish taking care of her own brats. Heaven forbid that the Master should miss his Saturday golf game because he has to cut his own grass.
On the other end of the spectrum, we have to obey the laws. We can’t pay three year’s taxes out of every five. We can’t shield documented proof of lawbreaking in our office (or anywhere else) from law enforcement. What’s more we can’t understand and don’t wish to tolerate elite folks that don’t think they need to obey the laws that we obey. Whether it is immigration or political corruption, we must first enforce the current laws. We can determine any new laws needed after we see the enforcement. That enforcement has to start at the top with George Bush. I want to see some business folks sitting in jail for violating the laws against hiring illegals. Let us not forget that they too are getting amnesty.
— Ken Shreve
This is precisely how an unprincipled pragmatic political process cheapens everything that has been paid for in blood, sweat and tears to the point that the argument isn’t about the right thing to do (Rule of Law) but the convenient thing to do (pragmatic) for political gains. This is why the Founders of our Republic feared Democracies almost as much as they feared a strong central government. You will have no rule of law if the meaning of words changes with the political winds.
— “Three thousand tyrants one mile away or one tyrant 3000 miles away,” from the movie Patriot
— “Liberalism is an easy choice to make; it requires no effort to be liberal,” Rush Limbaugh
Conservatism is not a choice; it is a way of life. You live conservatism; you choose to be liberal. Professional politicians choose to throw any principles they have to the winds because it is the easy choice to make. If the general population holds no principles dear, those in Congress simply have to make an easy choice. They don’t have to live the values they ran under.
— Thom Bateman
Newport News, Virginia
“A MODEST PROPOSAL”
Re: R. Andrew Newman’s Big Time Opportunities for Small Perverts:
I have a modest proposal to aid jurists like Judge Cecava. I urge the legislatures of the fifty states to end the shortage of cadavers for use in medical education. This would be done by allocating that portion of the population that preys on children to the dissection tables of our medical schools. In that way those people would atone for their repugnant
transgressions and society as a whole would be assured it had nothing further to fear from such individuals.
In the words of Jean Francois Kerry, N’est-ce pas?
— Jay W. Molyneaux
As the court almost certainly knows, the small pervert’s life expectancy in general prison population can be measured in weeks, if not days. Just think of the judge as unwilling to impose the death penalty for this crime.
— Ty Knoy
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Sir, you got what you deserved. Your reprehensible immigration suggestions are only exceeded by the arrogance of your response. You say, “Opposition… does not consist of any reasoned argument?” May I coin a new term here, please? You have invented the Grand Hominem: where you simply dismiss all opponents to your irrational rantings as being crazy themselves.
What a grand fellow you must be. After offering no substantive defense of your positions, you declaim, “As such, further discussion of the matter would be fruitless.” That’s equivalent to the rich kid saying “The game is over, and I’m taking my ball home.”
Faced with a phalanx of logic, it is you who backed down and left the playing field.
From Yet a New Undisclosed Location
Reading these past weeks about illegals has recalled to me a stand-up comic of the ’50s, Brother Dave Barbour. He proposed that we make everything legal, “then we wouldn’t have no crime.” A man ahead of his time.
His other hilarious observation was one you couldn’t get away with today. He did an authentic kind of Flip Williams’ high-pitched woman’s accent and the bit went (mama admonishing son) “James, Henry, you git away from that wheelbarra. You know you doesn’t know nuthin’ about machinery.”
I remember where “lovely and talented” was lifted from now. Bob Tyrrell often uses it to describe Hillary Clinton.
If I have offended anyone with my remarks, please take a number.
— Diane Smith
Southern San Francisco, California
I am dismayed by the arrogance of Brandon Crocker’s reply to reader mail opposing a “guest worker program.” He misses the entire point of the conservative base: Don’t trust this administration or this Congress.
Knowing how government tends to work, the total disconnect of ruling elites, past experience, and total refusal to enforce the borders first, the term “guest worker program” is interpreted as an Orwellian, Clintonesque euphemism for AMNESTY. Once the ruling elites get legal status for illegals, the rest of us get the middle finger on border enforcement.
That is how us [sic] hicks decode the language, and we will take it to the polls with us this fall.
In the mean time, Mr. Crocker, refresh yourself on Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution: The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the Legislature, or of the executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic violence.
I noticed a recent list of favorite conservative rock songs. Number 1 on that list is “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” by The Who. The unforgettable final lines of that song are, “Meet the new boss; same as the old boss.”
Meet the new Bush; same as the old Bush?
I had no idea that you were going to post responses to Crocker’s non-response. If I did, I would have noted that he in no way attempted to refute one single substantive point I made in my comments.
He did not even try to explain why America, the anti-Europe, should adopt policies that have so ruined Europe. He did not even address the fact that importing low-wage foreigners depresses wages and stifles innovation. He certainly did not make any argument to disprove that companies are importing low-wage labor so management can maximize profits, at the expense of the American worker.
Instead, he simply threw a fit, picked up his marbles and went home. Such behavior evidences a juvenile mind that has no place in The American Spectator, as if his ill-reasoned article were not proof enough in the first place.
— Scott Collier
Re: Ralph R. Reiland’s Freedom’s Whole Foods
How can one claim that the Whole Foods founder is a cheerleader for “individual freedoms” when he opposes the most basic freedom of all — Life? I’m sure Mr. Reiland is aware that Whole Foods is a major contributor to “Planned Parenthood.” He simply chose to not mention that the retailer is a willing participant and supporter of the abortion industry. This is just one example that pure capitalism, as Reiland espouses, inevitably results in less freedom for people; not more.
— A. E .R.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Re: Jed Babbin’s appearance on The O’Reilly Factor:
I live in Scotland and have just seen you on the O’Reilly Factor on Fox News. I have never heard of you and have no idea who you are but you spoke nonsense tonight about the BBC. The BBC is not a blind left-wing organization. I guess you have never heard it.
— Catherine Gordon
A LEFTY GADFLY
Re: Clifton Briner’s letter (“Selective Expertise”) in Reader Mail’s Less Than Honorable:
I’m sorry to disappoint Clifton Briner, but I grew up in England and New York, am generally apolitical, and don’t claim to know much about a lot of things, so his labels don’t really fit me.
I still maintain that W’s accent is an embarrassment. He might be able to pull it off if he had diplomatic skills, in which case some people might consider it charming — but he doesn’t. The world is rightly baffled why someone with his silver-spooned pedigree would speak that way. By all rights he should sound more like William F. Buckley, reeking of elitist forebears, with a hint of noblesse oblige. If we’re going to require immigrants to learn English, the President shouldn’t be exempt.
I know many of you don’t like what I have to say, but someone has to keep you from getting too clubby, though I don’t think VFW members really have that much in common with bluebloods and their crafty spin masters. Now, at least, Ben Stein is willing to admit that Iraq was a mistake (of course less of a mistake than those made by Democrats in the last century).
— Paul Dorell
Highland Park, Illinois
JIMMY’S LONE SUCCESS
Re: Gary D. Williamson’s letter (under “Coogler Reviews”) in Reader Mail’s Less Than Honorable:
“… Just wanted to drop you a note to let you know how you disgust me.”
The feeling, sir, is mutual. Any human with a milligram of intelligence and an ounce of memory, realizes that Jimmy Carter was and is a racist, hypocritical, opportunistic, dishonest political hack. Gas lines. Iran hostages. “Malaise.” Inflation. Amnesty for deserters. Honorable Discharge for John F. Kerry. Appeasement. Disloyal ally.
I guess we do need to thank him for one thing: Ronald Reagan.
— D.G. Richard, Esq.