The social issue business continues to bring out the non-conservative coloration of some.
Or, as one might say, there she goes again.
First, congratulations to James Taranto for his great piece on Jeffrey Bell in the Wall Street Journal.
As it happens, I shared a panel with Jeff at CPAC moderated by Dr. Matt Spaulding of Heritage and the great Dr. George Nash, whose latest book bringing forth Herbert Hoover’s Freedom Betrayed is but one of several massive contributions to conservative literature.
Jeff Bell spoke that day about his new book, The Case for Polarized Politics: Why America Needs Social Conservatism, in which he details the winning record social conservatism has had for the GOP. Quite to contrary of the “wisdom” of moderate Republicans, whose favored establishment candidates keep being advertised as “electable” only to lose — to considerable degree because they shy away from social conservatism — Jeff notes that of the last 11 presidential elections the GOP has won 7. Due, in no small measure, to candidates who stood up to be counted on social conservatives.
But as always, there is more going on here behind the curtains.
James earlier wrote this great column in his “Best of the Web Today” corner at the WSJ (and yes, he is a colleague here at The American Spectator). In a piece titled Fear and Feminism Taranto deftly picks apart the logic of both the Atlantic‘s Conor Friedersdorf and the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin. The Taranto column speaks for itself, no further explanation needed beyond one.
Mr. Friedersdorf, as he personally verified in an earlier exchange with me a while back, was candid enough to say that he is in fact not a conservative. Thus his angst over Rick Santorum, decidedly comes from whatever philosophical corner Friedersdorf inhabits, but self-admittedly, it isn’t the conservative corner.
Taranto also cites Jennifer Rubin, the Washington Post‘s designated conservative whom we not so long ago noted appears not to be either much of a conservative or a Santorum supporter, something our friend Quin Hillyer took issue with. Be that as it may, Taranto accurately and professionally noted Rubin’s (latest) jab at Santorum, asking “What in the world explains Friedersdorf’s and Rubin’s overwrought emotionalism?” Taranto then discusses.
What catches one’s eye, here, well beyond the standard moderate Republican flinching at social issues and, in Rubin’s case, the distortion of Santorum’s views, is her reaction on Twitter to both James Taranto and a columnist who is already out of the gate as a Santorum supporter — David Limbaugh.
In full disclosure mode, while my relationship with David Limbaugh is one of e-mails, I have had the pleasure of being at table at an American Spectator dinner with James. Both James and David, if I may be so bold, are not only smart, talented guys, true blue conservatives both with reams of out front writing to testify for it, they are in my experience gentlemen both.
Thus when Jennifer Rubin tweets (hat tip to Dan Riehl) that Taranto and Limbaugh are “Neanderthal jerks” it says more about Rubin then her targets.
Note that Rubin also says in one tweet that Santorum’s “social views r unacceptable.”
To which one can only say this is yet one more indication of Rubin’s liberal instincts. As Jeff Bell has discussed with James Taranto, discussed at CPAC, and written an entire book detailing, precisely the social views Santorum discusses are what has helped the GOP to a 7-4 winning record in presidential campaigns. Rubin, who appears bereft of women friends or acquaintances in what liberals call “fly over country,” is apparently truly unaware that there are women aplenty in this country who agree with some approximation of Santorum’s social views. And since he has never voted against federal support for contraception (and frankly, he should have — what business is this of the federal government one way or another?), has exactly the same stance on abortion as, Taranto notes, every GOP nominee since Reagan, and opposes gay marriage as does Barack Obama — what is Rubin’s problem?
Respectfully, yet again, I would suggest it’s nothing more complicated than in fact she, like Friedersdorf, isn’t a conservative. This doesn’t make her a bad person. It simply means, to adopt the old line about TV doctors, she isn’t a real conservative, she just plays one for the Washington Post.
And her embarrassing ad hominem attack on David Limbaugh and James Taranto is just more proof in the pudding.
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