“Since the general civilization of mankind, I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpation” -James Madison

Friday, February 11, 2011

Egypt and some challenges

I challenge the Egyptian people to continue toward the path of self-rule and maintenance of friendly relations with the West. Do not let the medieval-minded force sharia law or other religious-based legal systems onto the government you will soon be forming. Prove to the world that democracy can spring up independently, that it does not have to be "imposed" by force or for ulterior motives. The United States and Egypt have been friends and allies for over 30 years. It is unfortunate that National Security required us to keep a petty dictator in place and enrich him while he maintained a police state; however, it was necessary, as those tactics allowed him to keep the fundamental Islamists from taking root and building a power base. Moreover, he was committed to peace and coexistence with Israel. There is now a vacancy in place, and it is critical to regional and world relationships that some semblance of friendship with both Israel and the U.S. will be maintained.

I challenge the President of the United States and the House and Senate to offer full support to the democratic movement in Egypt. Now that the thorny problem of Mubarak has been removed, the decision tree has been greatly simplified. This does not mean we should send the Marines in; on the contrary, this is the opportunity that the Left should have been waiting for: we can be a force that fosters freedom without the aftermath of war and the resulting infrastructure issues as well as relationships with locals. The stories of Iraq and Afghanistan having been popularized as epic failures in Bush leadership (nation-building, Mission Accomplished, etc.), Team O should be able to slam-dunk this one. Just be there for the Egyptian people, and be clear and firm that the expectation is a peaceful transition to some form of democratic rule. Anything short of that will result in a reshifting of power in the Middle East, and likely an Israeli-involved war that will inevitably drag the United States in.

Most importantly, I challenge the American people to pay attention to this event. All the platitudes that are thrown around during July 4th and the various anniversaries of D-Day etc are merely hollow words if the spirit behind them is no longer in the hearts of the people. We all know the stories of Valley Forge, and Washington's men marching for miles in the snow in bare feet, boiling their shoes for broth, etc., but we don't really have that drive -- their sacrifices and willingness to go up to the wall have led to peaceful and orderly lives of leisure for their progeny. We take so much for granted, and seeing millions of people living in a police state take to the streets with very good reason to fear for their lives and/or safety in order to protest a strong-man dictator, should be a wake-up call to remember how important freedom is. We must continue to apply these lessons to our own government, not from revolution, but from making sure through involvement that they understand who is to serve whom. Simply showing up at a primary and voting for the challenger to the incumbent (regardless of party) is a great start; removing an incumbent is the single hardest thing to do, and it is most easily done at the primary level when your vote is weighted more. We must rediscover our passion for freedom and ensure that we do not allow a government to become too powerful for the common man to control.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Checking In

The coronation of Chairman O and the amateurish antics of his minions over the last few months certainly give plenty of fodder for a conservative blogger to chew on. Others have addressed these things far better than I can, and I simply haven't devoted any time to come up with anything to post that can provide an additional insight or different angle.

One thing that I don't want this blog to be is just another blowhard crank typing furiously about the latest outrage. As mentioned above, there's plenty of that already out there, and my contribution is hopefully not more noise. I'd rather be a silent bystander than just another guy shaking his fist.

The business of life is taking all my time at the moment, but please keep checking back occasionally. I have some ideas that I want to flesh out a bit before posting; this blog isn't dead -- just taking a nap.

Now, if you'll excuse me I must get back to work to pay for my share of the trillions that are being looted from the taxpayers.....

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Well, that wasn't predictable at all....

Iran says Obama's offer to talk shows US failure. Iranian government spokesman Gholam Hossein Elham was quoted as saying that the Dali Obama's offer to talk to Iran shows that America's policy of "domination" has failed. He went on to say, "This request means Western ideology has become passive, that capitalist thought and the system of domination have failed." The kicker:
"Negotiation is secondary, the main issue is that there is no way but for (the United States) to change."
'Negotiation is secondary' what exactly is the point of extending the proverbial Hand of Friendship? The idea is to talk, but what does it matter if the people you want to talk to DON'T WANT TO TALK BACK?

This is really an astounding development, no? Who could possibly have been able to guess that this would be the response? Oh, that's right....conservatives and about 50 million voters, that's who.

Forget the nonsensical Porkulus bill; this is a true and immediate danger to national security. Iran is a backwards civilization that does not believe in peaceful coexistence. They are barbaric, and they correctly sense weakness in our position. They kept their distance and shook their fists at us during the Bush administration, but they knew not to go too far because that would bring an immediate response -- they were scared of our power. Ten days in, the Obama administration has demonstrated that those days are over. There is no longer any need for Iran to keep a lid on things; they now have the upper hand because the aggressor ALWAYS has the upper hand when dealing with a pacifist.

They're going to have a shiny new nuke this Christmas. Once they send it to Israel, we will be committed to action, and I have zero faith that this president and administration will act in advance to prevent it or to react properly and appropriately when it does happen.

Obama said all through his campaign that we are a weak nation. Now it appears that 'we have become the ones we've been waiting for'.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

POTUS vs. Rush -- not exactly Godzilla vs. Mothra

It appears that the Dali Obama has succumbed to some fairly straightforward baiting by the Godfather. It took exactly 2 days of Limbaugh's programming to spur The One to respond. The central issue is that Rush quite correctly says that he doesn't want Obama to succeed in his socialist goals. Predictably, the Left and the Dali take this as not wanting him to succeed as President, and are in standard hypocritical shrieking harpy mode.

Although it is highly entertaining and my conservative friends and I get a huge laugh out of it, the situation is actually quite serious and very troubling on several fronts.

To begin with, what would Obama expect? He's the President and is 100% fair game for Rush's attention. Being diametrically opposites, it is absolutely a given that Rush is going to hit him as hard as possible and in as many entertaining and attention-getting ways possible. Rush is, after all, an entertainer, NOT a conservative think-tank leader and policy maker. For Obama to be hurt enough to fire back at all shows a thin-skinnedness and pettiness that is revealing.

Next is the idea that the President of the United States, the leader of the free world, especially given such serious issues that he faces, even has time to think about what a single commentator has to say, let alone craft and issue any sort of response. Does this man really have nothing better to do than this? Whether I voted for the guy or not, I want my President focused on issues and the business of the country, and this petty nonsense shows arrogance and self-centeredness.

Now we come to basic political savvy. "You can't just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done." It is obvious to anyone paying attention that the Republicans DON'T listen to Rush Limbaugh; if they did, McCain wouldn't have been the nominee and Dali wouldn't be POTUS today. This guy has absolutely no sense of who he is dealing with, elected and unelected. Basically Obama was saying that he doesn't want conservatives to be conservative; Rush is the convenient bugaboo because he is the biggest conservative name. The elephants aren't taking Rush any more seriously than they ever have, and they are obviously far more interested in laying down for the new Overlord than in standing firm to principled conservatism. His Eminence doesn't see this?

Finally there is matter of the hypocrites in the press. Can you imagine how they would have howled if W had taken public notice of the ranting of Keith Olberman or Chris Matthews? How about the NY Times? Like him or not, W was presidential and he knew that people are going to say bad things about him and that his position necessitated that he let it happen without interference. Not only does it look bad for the president's personality and strength, but it also calls into question where true Free Speech is. If the President is going to get into catfights with media figures, there is a real danger of that bad judgment leading to bad policy decisions -- think Fairness Doctrine.

These basic facets of The One' personality and acumen are not surprising, but the fact that neither he nor his advisors (mostly Clintonoids who are used to dealing with the press and hiding what they need to) thought this out is incredibly troubling for the reasons stated below.

You see, it's not bad enough that our President is a petty little bitch. It is far worse. I am a free citizen of the United States who is not especially brilliant or politically savvy, yet I am able to see these things clearly. It just takes paying a little attention.

Now imagine what is going on in Iran, China, Russia, Pakistan, and any number of other countries that are not our friends. There are people in charge of those places that are brilliant and politically savvy, and they are making plans against out country. And guess what they see?

They see a POTUS that has thin skin, can be easily baited into hasty words and actions, and is publicly fighting with a media figure. They see a preening vain little boy who cries when someone says they don't want him to win. They see weakness, arrogance, impotence, and most importantly, a man in charge who is not a Leader. In the Chess game of international politics, we have a guy who plays checkers, and who has to cheat at that. If he can be so easily provoked by a known commodity such as Rush, the odds that he gets rolled by someone truly at odds with our country and devious (say, Putin or whoever is Chinese premier at that point) are quite high.

Think back to W's first few months in office. It was relatively quiet and no one on either side was especially behind or against what he was doing. Then the Chinese downed one of our planes and took the crew prisoner. W passed this test by being strong and not letting himself get rolled. This strength was on display later in the days following 9/11. At that point there was no question that he was the Leader.

Obama is spending valuable time and energy whining about what a radio commentator (who will NEVER be on the same side as him) said. What on earth is this guy going to do in a real crisis? How will he and his team react? Will he Lead? Or will he whine, complain, and do exactly the wrong thing?

Based on what I've seen in the first week of His Obamaness' reign, I am not encouraged. We cannot hope that our enemies will not see these things and act on them; they do and they will.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Elephants, learn from Cardinals

The Arizona Cardinals are truly a great story in this year's NFL playoffs, and their story should inspire Republicans how to win going forward.

The Cardinals made the playoffs by winning their division, the NFC West. This was a weak division that lost to everyone they played; basically, the Cards were the least-worst team, finishing barely above .500 at 9-7. They were considered the weakest team in the playoff field and were expected to lose big in the first playoff game.

The main knock against the Cards this season is that they had no run offense to speak of, and their defense as a whole was shaky and inconsistent. On both sides of the ball their line was pushed around by every team they played.

In their first playoff game, a Wildcard round against my Atlanta Falcons, they changed up. The Falcons came into the game as solid favorites due to an established run game, a solid passing game, and a bend-but-don't-break defense whose secondary really got its act together toward the end of the season. The Cards met this challenge with strong line play that shut down Atlanta's run game entirely, an aggressive defense that jumped pass routes to intercept or break up passes, and a highly effective running game that baffled the Falcons defense all afternoon. The Cards won that first game handily, with the Falcons never really in it much after the beginning of the 2nd half.

The Cards then moved on to play the Carolina Panthers and were even more of an underdog. Carolina's defense was expected to shut the Cards down, and Arizona's defense was expected to be ineffective against the Panthers' pass attack. The game against the Falcons, while not necessarily viewed as a fluke, was not seen as any sort of turning point. After allowing Carolina to score a touchdown on their first drive rather easily, the Cards owned every second of the game after that -- their defense picked off 5 interceptions, shut down every Carolina run and pass threat, and had a high-powered offense that marched down the field on every drive. They stomped the Panthers and are now in the championship round. More than this, they have a possibility of hosting the championship game should the Eagles prevail over the Giants today.

What has caused this change? A few factors spring to mind. First, the Cards have gone back to basics. They have changed their approach and focus to controlling the battle (line of scrimmage) as much as possible on offense and defense. Offensively they have established a strong running game, which allows their already-effective passing game to explode. Defensively they have gotten incredibly aggressive -- pass-rushing, anticipating pass routes, and strong linebacking that stops runs. Secondarily, there is obviously a new focus on Team. They know that this is a history-making season for them already, and that only by continuing to shoot for the larger goal will they succeed in winning immediate battles. Finally, the leadership, coaching and on-field, has found a way to communicate with the team in general and inspire their confidence and desire to be better than they had been.

The Republicans need to view this as a metaphor for what they need to do. They are down, decidedly the weaker team in every aspect at this time. Barring complete disaster from the Dem rule, there is currently no reason to expect that the Elephants at this time will do anything to capture enough votes in the next few elections to re-attain any real power. Even in the case of the Dem disaster, those votes will be in protest of the Dems, not in support of the Republicans. The leadership has not learned its lessons, the rank-and-file don't believe in them (or the Team) anymore, and we expect our season is over. And you can forget about Special Teams.

I know sports-as-metaphor is hackneyed, cliched, and tired. Too bad. Elephants, see what the Cards did? You can do that, too. They might lose the next game. They might win and go to the Super Bowl, where they might lose or win. In any event, they have succeeded far beyond their expectations, while the Elephants are underperforming by every possible measure, and their season is now a success regardless of what happens next.

Learn. Get back to being conservatives. Win the Crowd. Above all, do anything but what you are doing now, because that way ends the season under .500, watching others play for the Prize.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Go Jews, Go!

Regarding the most recent unpleasantness in the Great Unpleasantness that is the Middle East, I am foursquare behind Israel's actions in the Gaza matter. Hamas has never ceased hostilities, whether verbal ("Israel has no right to exist") or physical (lobbing rockets into civilian areas DAILY).

The Israeli leaders have also correctly recognized that His Obamaness is going to be at best a lukewarm supporter and may very likely work against their interests in favor of dialogue with Hamas and Hezbollah. The recent announcement that the Obama administration would resume low-level diplomatic talks with Iran, with no preconditions, did not go unnoticed in the Knesset.

This is their time. If they're going to do anything to stamp out the Hamas cockroaches and still have any semblance of cover from the US, it must be right now, while President Bush still has a few days to be the solid support. Israel is obviously banking on a victory within the next 10 days or so, because once January 20 rolls around, they will be receiving a colder shoulder from their strongest ally.

Hamas leaders have openly admitted that they are surprised Israel is striking back at this time. Not only does that show how limited their understanding of international relations is, it also demonstrates a complete disconnect from their own situation.

Since it has come to war, I believe that Israel needs to go the next step. It is time they announce that they are going to meet their enemies on the same battlefield: Palestine has no right to exist, and civilians are fair game. They should declare that they intend to roll tanks through and destroy everything and kill everyone in Gaza unless unconditional demands are met and followed through. The leadership of Hamas must change or end, and those who would lead Gaza MUST be willing to coexist peacefully with Israel and her citizens. Anything less leads to annihilation. It is still far more than Hamas is willing to grant to Israel, and much more merciful than Hamas would be if the balance of power were shifted.

This won't happen, of course. But it is time that everyone involved completes the mental exercise of unilateral disarmament:
What happens if Hamas suddenly throws all their weapons into the ocean? Israel will live peacefully with their Arab neighbors.

What happens if Israel suddently throws all their weapons into the ocean? Hamas will instantly attack and attempt to destroy Israel.
Until both answers involve living peacefully together, Israel is correct to take any military action necessary to limit or destroy Hamas' ability to do harm.

I say, "Go Jews, Go!"


So I was dead wrong about the recent popularity contest, and the Stupid party continues to disappoint.

Obama has thus far proven that he is determined to be a combination of Clinton's third term and Carter's second. The only good thing is the possibility of helping give birth to another Reagan.

The Stupid party appears to be going along with things, instead of digging in and fighting for puh-puh-puh-principled cuh-cuh-cuh-conservatism. They might not have the numbers to mount real resistance, but they could certainly make it as difficult as possible to move the USSA forward. At the very least, they should force the Dems to own every bailout.

Bush, what the hell is up with you and the FDR act on your way out? Tell the car execs "hell no" and veto the bailouts until the end -- make the inevitable financial avalanche your successor's legacy, not your own!

I am not one to say that the end of the earth is coming since His Obamaness will soon perch on the Cherry Blossom Throne; it certainly won't be as bad as many hysterical conservatives would believe. It won't be pretty, and it might be decades before the potential damage he will do can be undone, but we'll all get through it. The idea at this point is to learn from the failures that the 105th and 106th congresses wrought, rediscover conservatism, and get the ideas out there so the uninformed, scared, and soon-to-be-disillusioned have a chance to hear our side. Barring that, conservatism and what remains of the Republican party will be swept aside like the Whigs before them.

Unfortunately, it is still lunacy to consider a 3rd party. The last election showed that conservatives won't run to another party; they'll just stay home and say "to hell with you and your RINO ways". We MUST remove from our leadership those who do not stand for limited government, lowered taxes, reduced regulation, and reform from within.

McCain showed that he was Bob Dole '96 all over -- the old insider who was taking his turn. This is not our way; the Dems function like that, and every time we try it, failure is the result. And Republicans who voted for expanded spending deserve to be voted out. If we're going to slide further into socialism, it had damn well better be clearly on the backs of the Dems.

I understand and support the traditional plank on abortion. That being said, COOL IT with the promise of overturning Roe. It does not bring new voters in, and it turn off many who are on our side or could be otherwise convinced. This is a long-term idea that can only be implemented once we have solidified our position strongly in both houses of congress with a strong and committed conservative president. We will not win this battle until the majority of Americans can be brought to embrace the other salient conservative principles, which is what will enable the attainment of said majorities. Till then, knock it off.

Once in office, CUT SPENDING. Support anti-pork measures, and help other conservatives make the case for reducing or eliminating governmental services. Support lower taxes and resist the urge to dole out federal dollars for short-term political gain.

I have gotten very jaded about politics since the 2006 elections, and the 2008 election has certainly not helped at all. I finally "grew up" politically in 2000 by rejecting my youthful Libertarian fascination and embracing the Republicans as the best way to see my beliefs and goals advanced. Although my support still goes that way (the Dems are absolutely no home for my views), the fact that they simply will not execute has led to serious disillusionment, and I know that I am far from alone in this regard. Now I'm older and wiser, so there is no thought of returning to any 3rd parties, whether from belief or spite. So I support, but with a heavy heart and no expectations of success or follow-through. It is a very difficult place to be, politically speaking.

Republicans, clean up your damned house. Otherwise your liberal buddies are going to clean house for you, and we'll ALL be out in the cold looking in.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

My 2008 National Election Prediction

1. The Dems will have a very difficult time this summer in Denver. Even the superdelegates are going to be bitterly divided, and it will take a minimum of 30 votes to settle.
2. When the dust clears, the Dems will have decided that their fear of losing the black vote trumps their fear of Clinton retaliation. As a party they're nearly as sick of the Clintons as we are, and this is the chance to dump them for good.
3. Obama will indeed be the historic First Black Nominee. Whee.
4. The Rev. Wright debacle, combined with Obama's complete lack of presidentiality, will result in few white votes. These missing Dems probably won't vote for McCain; they'll just stay home. Blacks alone won't put him in the White House, and youth never vote as much as they talk.
5. Obama wasn't able to win primary victories in the top 10 electoral states, most of which are reliably blue. He will be lucky to win them in the general, and likely will not.
6. The general election will resemble the landslides of the 80s.....McCain will take 42 states at a minimum.
7. Congressional races will continue to show Dem gains. The Senate will still be just shy of 60, but with the RINOs helping, they will be a major force to be reckoned with. The House will remain solidly blue as well.

Here is the REAL problem with the upcoming election: The McCain landslide will be falsely attributed to a mandate for "moderates" and the further erosion of nationalism and capitalism vis a vis National Healthcare, Global Warming regulations, increased taxation, and continued tolerance of illegal immigration.

McCain WILL be president, with a strongly blue congress and a shiny new "mandate". Sadly, he'll work with them and continue to further the goals (with few exceptions) that an otherwise sensible Dem would have. We will, however, have escaped the abyss into which Clinton or Obama would have pushed us.

It is a time for conservatives to realize that we are back in the wilderness, even if "our" guy wins in November. Hopefully he will do little harm and not set the movement back too far for too long.

Predictions of victory have never seemed so depressing.