Liberalism under siege

Charles Krauthammer analyzes the rhetoric of today’s increasingly desperate liberals. He is essentially arguing that those who used to claim that they were “the party of the common people” now hold the opinions of the “common people” in contempt. Instead of arguing for their positions, liberals have become reduced to labeling everyone who disagrees with them a bigot: 

Liberalism under siege is an ugly sight indeed. Just yesterday it was all hope and change and returning power to the people. But the people have proved so disappointing. Their recalcitrance has, in only 19 months, turned the predicted 40-year liberal ascendancy (James Carville) into a full retreat. Ah, the people, the little people, the small-town people, the “bitter” people, as Barack Obama in an unguarded moment once memorably called them, clinging “to guns or religion or” — this part is less remembered — “antipathy toward people who aren’t like them.”

That’s a polite way of saying: clinging to bigotry. And promiscuous charges of bigotry are precisely how our current rulers and their vast media auxiliary react to an obstreperous citizenry that insists on incorrect thinking.

– Resistance to the vast expansion of government power, intrusiveness and debt, as represented by the Tea Party movement? Why, racist resentment toward a black president.

– Disgust and alarm with the federal government’s unwillingness to curb illegal immigration, as crystallized in the Arizona law? Nativism.

– Opposition to the most radical redefinition of marriage in human history, as expressed in Proposition 8 in California? Homophobia.

– Opposition to a 15-story Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero? Islamophobia.

Now we know why the country has become “ungovernable,” last year’s excuse for the Democrats’ failure of governance: Who can possibly govern a nation of racist, nativist, homophobic Islamophobes?

Note what connects these issues. In every one, liberals have lost the argument in the court of public opinion. Majorities — often lopsided majorities — oppose President Obama’s social-democratic agenda (e.g., the stimulus, Obamacare), support the Arizona law, oppose gay marriage and reject a mosque near Ground Zero.

What’s a liberal to do? Pull out the bigotry charge, the trump that preempts debate and gives no credit to the seriousness and substance of the contrary argument. The most venerable of these trumps is, of course, the race card. When the Tea Party arose, a spontaneous, leaderless and perfectly natural (and traditionally American) reaction to the vast expansion of government intrinsic to the president’s proudly proclaimed transformational agenda, the liberal commentariat cast it as a mob of angry white yahoos disguising their antipathy to a black president by cleverly speaking in economic terms.

Then came Arizona and S.B. 1070. It seems impossible for the left to believe that people of good will could hold that: (a) illegal immigration should be illegal, (b) the federal government should not hold border enforcement hostage to comprehensive reform, i.e., amnesty, (c) every country has the right to determine the composition of its immigrant population.

As for Proposition 8, is it so hard to see why people might believe that a single judge overturning the will of 7 million voters is an affront to democracy? And that seeing merit in retaining the structure of the most ancient and fundamental of all social institutions is something other than an alleged hatred of gays — particularly since the opposite-gender requirement has characterized virtually every society in all the millennia until just a few years ago?

And now the mosque near Ground Zero. The intelligentsia is near unanimous that the only possible grounds for opposition is bigotry toward Muslims. This smug attribution of bigotry to two-thirds of the population hinges on the insistence on a complete lack of connection between Islam and radical Islam, a proposition that dovetails perfectly with the Obama administration’s pretense that we are at war with nothing more than “violent extremists” of inscrutable motive and indiscernible belief. Those who reject this as both ridiculous and politically correct (an admitted redundancy) are declared Islamophobes, the ad hominem du jour.

It is a measure of the corruption of liberal thought and the collapse of its self-confidence that, finding itself so widely repudiated, it resorts reflexively to the cheapest race-baiting (in a colorful variety of forms). Indeed, how can one reason with a nation of pitchfork-wielding mobs brimming with “antipathy toward people who aren’t like them” — blacks, Hispanics, gays and Muslims — a nation that is, as Michelle Obama once put it succinctly, “just downright mean”?

The Democrats are going to get beaten badly in November. Not just because the economy is ailing. And not just because Obama over-read his mandate in governing too far left. But because a comeuppance is due the arrogant elites whose undisguised contempt for the great unwashed prevents them from conceding a modicum of serious thought to those who dare oppose them.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    If only the Republicans would also get beaten badly in November and a third party that is actually different from the status quo could emerge.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    If only the Republicans would also get beaten badly in November and a third party that is actually different from the status quo could emerge.

  • Porcell

    Bryan at 1, Ah yes, the dream of a third party that will come riding in on a white horse and save the day. The Republicans will win in November, as it has experienced moderate leaders who have the capability to face the potentially disastrous economic future should we hold to the present course.

    Under Republican leadership, Paul Ryan’s Roadmap for America and other ideas that deal with the issue of unfunded entitlement liabilities while retaining financial sustainable Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid will get a fair hearing.

    The American people are basically Center Right with about 40% who identify as conservatives 20% liberal and the rest mostly moderate or independent. The country is interested in neither the radical solutions of the Ron Paul paleo-conservative variety, nor the radical Democratic party ones of Obama/Pelosi Reid. Americans need to prepare for some serious public policy belt tightening.

    However, should the Republican Party become complacent after 2010 and 2012 with their Beltway power, as happened In the Bush/Abramoff years, then it would be possible for the American people turn to a third party.

  • Porcell

    Bryan at 1, Ah yes, the dream of a third party that will come riding in on a white horse and save the day. The Republicans will win in November, as it has experienced moderate leaders who have the capability to face the potentially disastrous economic future should we hold to the present course.

    Under Republican leadership, Paul Ryan’s Roadmap for America and other ideas that deal with the issue of unfunded entitlement liabilities while retaining financial sustainable Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid will get a fair hearing.

    The American people are basically Center Right with about 40% who identify as conservatives 20% liberal and the rest mostly moderate or independent. The country is interested in neither the radical solutions of the Ron Paul paleo-conservative variety, nor the radical Democratic party ones of Obama/Pelosi Reid. Americans need to prepare for some serious public policy belt tightening.

    However, should the Republican Party become complacent after 2010 and 2012 with their Beltway power, as happened In the Bush/Abramoff years, then it would be possible for the American people turn to a third party.

  • Tom Hering

    And the conservatives have been reduced to tapping into populist anger, alienation and anxiety.

  • Tom Hering

    And the conservatives have been reduced to tapping into populist anger, alienation and anxiety.

  • Grace

    Bryan – 1 – “If only the Republicans would also get beaten badly in November and a third party that is actually different from the status quo could emerge.”

    The conservatives in this country aren’t falling for the routine this time around. We are out to win, solving the problems created by this administration and that of the nonsensical third party dreamers – there is no time to loose, this country needs to re-cover, NOT play a third party game –

    Divide and conquer? what a joke!

  • Grace

    Bryan – 1 – “If only the Republicans would also get beaten badly in November and a third party that is actually different from the status quo could emerge.”

    The conservatives in this country aren’t falling for the routine this time around. We are out to win, solving the problems created by this administration and that of the nonsensical third party dreamers – there is no time to loose, this country needs to re-cover, NOT play a third party game –

    Divide and conquer? what a joke!

  • Greg Smith

    We need to get a few things straight. Liberalism is not under siege. I wish it were. In fact, I wish we could once and for all pull a sheet over its head. Unfortunately, it is only experiencing a bump in the road to dominancy. Yes, the current perception is such that the Republicans will win big this fall. They will probably take back the House. They even have a very remote shot at the Senate. Now, let me explain how this will play out.

    Republicans win big this fall. Democrats will abandon Obama like rats on a sinking ship. But where will they go? Where CAN they go? Hillary will resign her post as SecState shortly after the midterm election. Shortly thereafter, she will announce her candidacy for the 2012 Dem nomination. Because Obama has been abandon, the same unthinking mindless euphoria that swept Obama into office will now sweep Hillary through the primaries. And who will run against her on the Republican side? We have no one. NO ONE!

    Don’t even begin to suggest some of the front-running names. I once thought Mitch Daniels could do it. But social issues are not important. There goes half the party. Jindal could do it but he needs more time. Palin was successfully painted by the media as a wacko. She has come back from that in the eyes of many but I doubt she can recover. Newt? Please. Our best bet is Mitt Romney. That should tell you something. Where is the Ronald Reagan of this generation?

    There is another reason I think that the liberals are only experiencing a bump on their way to ascendency. The American people can no longer think past there own noses. The American people are stupid. That is how Obama got elected in the first place. I have completely lost faith and no longer buy the argument that they will do the right thing in the long run. They won’t because too many are vested in the current system. Too many receive too much from the government and will not be willing to live without it.

    Obama is deliberately implementing policies that will eventually enslave the American people to its government. Even if the Republicans win this fall, I doubt they will have the testicular fortitude to take back the country. They are a coddling bunch of wienies who don’t even know what to do themselves.

  • Greg Smith

    We need to get a few things straight. Liberalism is not under siege. I wish it were. In fact, I wish we could once and for all pull a sheet over its head. Unfortunately, it is only experiencing a bump in the road to dominancy. Yes, the current perception is such that the Republicans will win big this fall. They will probably take back the House. They even have a very remote shot at the Senate. Now, let me explain how this will play out.

    Republicans win big this fall. Democrats will abandon Obama like rats on a sinking ship. But where will they go? Where CAN they go? Hillary will resign her post as SecState shortly after the midterm election. Shortly thereafter, she will announce her candidacy for the 2012 Dem nomination. Because Obama has been abandon, the same unthinking mindless euphoria that swept Obama into office will now sweep Hillary through the primaries. And who will run against her on the Republican side? We have no one. NO ONE!

    Don’t even begin to suggest some of the front-running names. I once thought Mitch Daniels could do it. But social issues are not important. There goes half the party. Jindal could do it but he needs more time. Palin was successfully painted by the media as a wacko. She has come back from that in the eyes of many but I doubt she can recover. Newt? Please. Our best bet is Mitt Romney. That should tell you something. Where is the Ronald Reagan of this generation?

    There is another reason I think that the liberals are only experiencing a bump on their way to ascendency. The American people can no longer think past there own noses. The American people are stupid. That is how Obama got elected in the first place. I have completely lost faith and no longer buy the argument that they will do the right thing in the long run. They won’t because too many are vested in the current system. Too many receive too much from the government and will not be willing to live without it.

    Obama is deliberately implementing policies that will eventually enslave the American people to its government. Even if the Republicans win this fall, I doubt they will have the testicular fortitude to take back the country. They are a coddling bunch of wienies who don’t even know what to do themselves.

  • DonS

    Unfortunately, Greg @ 5 is likely largely correct. The elites still hold all of the levers of power, except for talk radio and Fox News. They own the media, the government (especially the civil bureaucracy), and the educational establishment. They also have the money, because the thing that never gets emphasized is that the center of power in the liberal establishment is rich white men and labor unions (largely comprising our “public servants”) with their millions of dollars in extracted member dues. This center of power plays minorities and “the poor” for suckers, throwing them a scrap for their vote every time an election rolls around, and, like old Harry Reid, telling them that, for example, he can’t see why “Latinos should ever vote Republican”. Typical Democratic racist group think, all abetted by a compliant media that seldom exposes this fraud and patronization for what it really is. Once the Republicans regain power, the media drumbeat will begin, labeling them as “ultra conservative extremists”, trotting out endless anecdotal tales of hardship because of “mean” Republican policies (they’ve played this song a thousand times before), until eventually enough Republicans crumble that the agenda comes to a standstill and they give up and jump into the trough with the rest of the pigs.

    Charles Krauthammer’s article is right on. Long ago the elite lost on the issues, despite the advantages they hold with their ownership of the media and centers of establishment power. But, since they know best, they are not content to merely continue their lobbying efforts. Inevitably, they resort to the courts, to impose their will by fiat.

  • DonS

    Unfortunately, Greg @ 5 is likely largely correct. The elites still hold all of the levers of power, except for talk radio and Fox News. They own the media, the government (especially the civil bureaucracy), and the educational establishment. They also have the money, because the thing that never gets emphasized is that the center of power in the liberal establishment is rich white men and labor unions (largely comprising our “public servants”) with their millions of dollars in extracted member dues. This center of power plays minorities and “the poor” for suckers, throwing them a scrap for their vote every time an election rolls around, and, like old Harry Reid, telling them that, for example, he can’t see why “Latinos should ever vote Republican”. Typical Democratic racist group think, all abetted by a compliant media that seldom exposes this fraud and patronization for what it really is. Once the Republicans regain power, the media drumbeat will begin, labeling them as “ultra conservative extremists”, trotting out endless anecdotal tales of hardship because of “mean” Republican policies (they’ve played this song a thousand times before), until eventually enough Republicans crumble that the agenda comes to a standstill and they give up and jump into the trough with the rest of the pigs.

    Charles Krauthammer’s article is right on. Long ago the elite lost on the issues, despite the advantages they hold with their ownership of the media and centers of establishment power. But, since they know best, they are not content to merely continue their lobbying efforts. Inevitably, they resort to the courts, to impose their will by fiat.

  • Porcell

    Greg, why do you rate Romney better than Mitch Daniels?

    Romney did little as a Massachusetts governor except to install a health-care plan rather similar to ObamaCare; it just now is way over budget and will contribute to a large Mass. budget deficit. Romney is certainly bright and was very successful in the finance field, though something seems to be missing in his potential to be a public leader.

    Mitch Daniels succeeded in turning a substantial Indiana budget deficit around and, also, making Indiana attractive for large-scale globally competitive business investment. He seems to have a winning personality and is articulate. I see him in his quiet way as being a potentially great leader who knows how to get things done and restore the basic confidence of the American people. What’s missing in this view?

  • Porcell

    Greg, why do you rate Romney better than Mitch Daniels?

    Romney did little as a Massachusetts governor except to install a health-care plan rather similar to ObamaCare; it just now is way over budget and will contribute to a large Mass. budget deficit. Romney is certainly bright and was very successful in the finance field, though something seems to be missing in his potential to be a public leader.

    Mitch Daniels succeeded in turning a substantial Indiana budget deficit around and, also, making Indiana attractive for large-scale globally competitive business investment. He seems to have a winning personality and is articulate. I see him in his quiet way as being a potentially great leader who knows how to get things done and restore the basic confidence of the American people. What’s missing in this view?

  • CRB

    Anyone who hopes for “a 3rd actually different from the
    status quo” better be careful what they wish for! With the
    push for a mosque at ground zero and the building of many
    more in this “land of the free and home of the brave,” those
    who hope for a continuation of the freedoms that millions
    have given their lives for had better be absolutely sure who
    they want to govern them in the future.
    How we need the likes of a George Patton in the political
    arena today!!!!!!!
    But, that’s just my opinion.

  • CRB

    Anyone who hopes for “a 3rd actually different from the
    status quo” better be careful what they wish for! With the
    push for a mosque at ground zero and the building of many
    more in this “land of the free and home of the brave,” those
    who hope for a continuation of the freedoms that millions
    have given their lives for had better be absolutely sure who
    they want to govern them in the future.
    How we need the likes of a George Patton in the political
    arena today!!!!!!!
    But, that’s just my opinion.

  • Louis

    Patton????

    As a non-American, I think you fellows need another Eisenhower. But what do I knw. I’m just an ignorant transplantes SA’can living north of the 49th, as some of you like to say….

  • Louis

    Patton????

    As a non-American, I think you fellows need another Eisenhower. But what do I knw. I’m just an ignorant transplantes SA’can living north of the 49th, as some of you like to say….

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “And the conservatives have been reduced to tapping into populist anger, alienation and anxiety.”

    Gee, sounds like the American Revolution. It’s not really conservatives so much as it is productive people who are tired of the government on their back. Just like in 1640, and 1776 and all the able, ambitious, hard working people who have wanted to come here to get away from oppressive parasitic government that exists more for the benefit of those in government than for the people. These are the real left. What we call liberals are anything but. They want to maintain the power and control they already have. That is they want to conserve their wealth, power, positions and prestige. The labels just don’t mean what they did. Whoever is in power is the de facto conservative party. You can’t conserve what you don’t have.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “And the conservatives have been reduced to tapping into populist anger, alienation and anxiety.”

    Gee, sounds like the American Revolution. It’s not really conservatives so much as it is productive people who are tired of the government on their back. Just like in 1640, and 1776 and all the able, ambitious, hard working people who have wanted to come here to get away from oppressive parasitic government that exists more for the benefit of those in government than for the people. These are the real left. What we call liberals are anything but. They want to maintain the power and control they already have. That is they want to conserve their wealth, power, positions and prestige. The labels just don’t mean what they did. Whoever is in power is the de facto conservative party. You can’t conserve what you don’t have.

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  • DonS

    Katy L. @ 8: To clarify, I was not endorsing Greg’s notion that the American people are “stupid”. I am not as cynical as he is, but was agreeing with him that it is likely not the case that the American liberal movement is dead or dying. The problem with the American people and their voting patterns is that productive people lead busy lives, and do not tend to pay too much attention to politics. When election season rolls around, they listen to the politicians and **shudder** BELIEVE them! When Obama incessantly campaigned on the notion of comity, moderation, and bipartisanship, and Nancy Pelosi claimed that a Democratic Congress would be the most ethical Congress in the history of the Republic, the voters believed the rhetoric. How did that work out for them? Similarly, while there is a lot of brave Republican talk now about “rolling back” Obamacare and public spending, I’ll be skeptical until I see some actual courage on their part, in what is surely to be a intensive assault by the left and the elite institutions controlling our country.

  • DonS

    Katy L. @ 8: To clarify, I was not endorsing Greg’s notion that the American people are “stupid”. I am not as cynical as he is, but was agreeing with him that it is likely not the case that the American liberal movement is dead or dying. The problem with the American people and their voting patterns is that productive people lead busy lives, and do not tend to pay too much attention to politics. When election season rolls around, they listen to the politicians and **shudder** BELIEVE them! When Obama incessantly campaigned on the notion of comity, moderation, and bipartisanship, and Nancy Pelosi claimed that a Democratic Congress would be the most ethical Congress in the history of the Republic, the voters believed the rhetoric. How did that work out for them? Similarly, while there is a lot of brave Republican talk now about “rolling back” Obamacare and public spending, I’ll be skeptical until I see some actual courage on their part, in what is surely to be a intensive assault by the left and the elite institutions controlling our country.

  • Porcell

    On the issue of Americans being “stupid,” Lincoln’s wisdom is still relevant. You can fool some of the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time. Obama fooled enough people to get elected, though most of them have royally caught on to him and probably Hillary Clinton as well.

    I’m moderately optimistic that political class elites will get it and move the country in a better direction. A big factor for me was my state of Massachusetts, seemingly liberal beyond redemption, electing Scott Brown to the “Kennedy” seat that the liberals thought they owned. I’ve followed Brown carefully; so far he has fulfilled his pledge to examine every issue from the perspective of the people’s broad interests. He gets it that the people want results and hasn’t been seduced by the inside the Beltway climate.

  • Porcell

    On the issue of Americans being “stupid,” Lincoln’s wisdom is still relevant. You can fool some of the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time. Obama fooled enough people to get elected, though most of them have royally caught on to him and probably Hillary Clinton as well.

    I’m moderately optimistic that political class elites will get it and move the country in a better direction. A big factor for me was my state of Massachusetts, seemingly liberal beyond redemption, electing Scott Brown to the “Kennedy” seat that the liberals thought they owned. I’ve followed Brown carefully; so far he has fulfilled his pledge to examine every issue from the perspective of the people’s broad interests. He gets it that the people want results and hasn’t been seduced by the inside the Beltway climate.

  • Porcell

    One of these days I’ll learn to close off those quotes.

  • Porcell

    One of these days I’ll learn to close off those quotes.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “You’re describing the immigrants who risk their lives to cross the border every day.”

    Not even close. The people I am referring to were law abiding sorts. They were not looking for free school for their kids. They built their own in the wilderness. They did it themselves as soon as they got out from under their oppressors. They were not running to a nanny state, to safety and security provided by others. They were running from tyrants.

    Those crossing the border are risking their lives because they are breaking the law. Totally different.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “You’re describing the immigrants who risk their lives to cross the border every day.”

    Not even close. The people I am referring to were law abiding sorts. They were not looking for free school for their kids. They built their own in the wilderness. They did it themselves as soon as they got out from under their oppressors. They were not running to a nanny state, to safety and security provided by others. They were running from tyrants.

    Those crossing the border are risking their lives because they are breaking the law. Totally different.

  • Porcell

    Bob, Brown did vote for the financial reform bill, having read it and on balance agreed with it. I happen to disagree with him on this but am far from inclined to lose confidence in him. He took a close look at the Elena Kagan nomination for the Supreme Court and voted against it, causing apoplexy among the Mass. political media pundits.

    Though Brown doesn’t keep a wet finger up to the political winds, he is aware that the Democrats in Massachusetts in about two years will run an all out campaign to take back the “Kennedy” seat.
    The people of Palin’s Alaska are far more conservative than those of Massachusetts. Brown has to recognize this political reality without prostituting himself to it.

  • Porcell

    Bob, Brown did vote for the financial reform bill, having read it and on balance agreed with it. I happen to disagree with him on this but am far from inclined to lose confidence in him. He took a close look at the Elena Kagan nomination for the Supreme Court and voted against it, causing apoplexy among the Mass. political media pundits.

    Though Brown doesn’t keep a wet finger up to the political winds, he is aware that the Democrats in Massachusetts in about two years will run an all out campaign to take back the “Kennedy” seat.
    The people of Palin’s Alaska are far more conservative than those of Massachusetts. Brown has to recognize this political reality without prostituting himself to it.

  • Porcell

    Katy L at 8, exactly.

  • Porcell

    Katy L at 8, exactly.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Interesting how a discussion of how (many) liberals react to stress changed into a discussion of the GOP. I’d like to bring a perspective on the original topic; all too often, I seen personal attacks on both sides of the aisle, but quite a bit more often from the left. So I don’t think Krauthammer is on to anything new; rather, it’s just that it’s more obvious at this point.

    Regarding the GOP, I hope and pray that all politicians clue into what God would have them to do–and strongly believe that an ever increasing welfare state is not it. He may punish us with that, but that’s (Deuteronomy 17:14-20) not what He intended for the King to do.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Interesting how a discussion of how (many) liberals react to stress changed into a discussion of the GOP. I’d like to bring a perspective on the original topic; all too often, I seen personal attacks on both sides of the aisle, but quite a bit more often from the left. So I don’t think Krauthammer is on to anything new; rather, it’s just that it’s more obvious at this point.

    Regarding the GOP, I hope and pray that all politicians clue into what God would have them to do–and strongly believe that an ever increasing welfare state is not it. He may punish us with that, but that’s (Deuteronomy 17:14-20) not what He intended for the King to do.

  • Porcell

    Bike, your right. This thread ought to be about the tendency of left liberals to smear conservatives, as Krauthammer ably states as follows:

    Resistance to the vast expansion of government power, intrusiveness and debt, as represented by the Tea Party movement? Why, racist resentment toward a black president.

    Disgust and alarm with the federal government’s unwillingness to curb illegal immigration, as crystallized in the Arizona law? Nativism.

    Opposition to the most radical redefinition of marriage in human history, as expressed in Proposition 8 in California? Homophobia.

    Opposition to a 15-story Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero? Islamophobia.

    Obama gave himself away when as Kruthammer remarks … in an unguarded moment [Obama] once memorably called them, ‘clinging to guns or religion’ or — this part is less remembered — “antipathy toward people who aren’t like them.”

  • Porcell

    Bike, your right. This thread ought to be about the tendency of left liberals to smear conservatives, as Krauthammer ably states as follows:

    Resistance to the vast expansion of government power, intrusiveness and debt, as represented by the Tea Party movement? Why, racist resentment toward a black president.

    Disgust and alarm with the federal government’s unwillingness to curb illegal immigration, as crystallized in the Arizona law? Nativism.

    Opposition to the most radical redefinition of marriage in human history, as expressed in Proposition 8 in California? Homophobia.

    Opposition to a 15-story Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero? Islamophobia.

    Obama gave himself away when as Kruthammer remarks … in an unguarded moment [Obama] once memorably called them, ‘clinging to guns or religion’ or — this part is less remembered — “antipathy toward people who aren’t like them.”

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I don’t think Americans are any more stupid than anyone else. But why is the creation of a viable third party that actually stands for something other than the status quo of the Republicrat parties so bad? I would like to get involved with a party that would pursue a radical agenda of decreasing the scope and power of the federal government and returning more governmental responsibility to states and local governments. Bush and his senate and congress showed us all that Republicans are not willing to actually do this.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I don’t think Americans are any more stupid than anyone else. But why is the creation of a viable third party that actually stands for something other than the status quo of the Republicrat parties so bad? I would like to get involved with a party that would pursue a radical agenda of decreasing the scope and power of the federal government and returning more governmental responsibility to states and local governments. Bush and his senate and congress showed us all that Republicans are not willing to actually do this.

  • kerner

    Porcell:

    Like you, I really hope Mitch Daniels has what it takes (and gets the opportunity) to do for the nation what he did (and is still doing) for Indiana.

    Obamacare is already doing for the nation what Romneycare did for Massachusetts. I will never trust Romney after that.

  • kerner

    Porcell:

    Like you, I really hope Mitch Daniels has what it takes (and gets the opportunity) to do for the nation what he did (and is still doing) for Indiana.

    Obamacare is already doing for the nation what Romneycare did for Massachusetts. I will never trust Romney after that.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    ” Your bigotry – your refusal to ascribe good and humane motives to nonwhites – is disgusting.”

    Hilarious.

    Echo of the Krauthammer piece.

    Remember, if you disagree with someone, they must be a bigot!

    LOL

    Hey, if I trespass somewhere, I may be risking my life, but are you a bigot if you question my motives for trespassing?

    You crack me up.

    Anyone who is for rule of law – Bigot!

    Too funny.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    ” Your bigotry – your refusal to ascribe good and humane motives to nonwhites – is disgusting.”

    Hilarious.

    Echo of the Krauthammer piece.

    Remember, if you disagree with someone, they must be a bigot!

    LOL

    Hey, if I trespass somewhere, I may be risking my life, but are you a bigot if you question my motives for trespassing?

    You crack me up.

    Anyone who is for rule of law – Bigot!

    Too funny.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Hey, John, Mexico promptly deports anyone sneaking into Mexico.

    Are they all bigots?

    Every country on earth has immigration restrictions.
    I guess they are all bigots now!

    Besides what is inhumane about expecting people to just live in their own countries and simply get permission to enter another country? I have had to get dozens of visas to go to other countries. Bunch of bigots!

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Hey, John, Mexico promptly deports anyone sneaking into Mexico.

    Are they all bigots?

    Every country on earth has immigration restrictions.
    I guess they are all bigots now!

    Besides what is inhumane about expecting people to just live in their own countries and simply get permission to enter another country? I have had to get dozens of visas to go to other countries. Bunch of bigots!

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Katy (@8) largely beat me to it, but I can’t resist …

    “A comeuppance is due the arrogant elites whose undisguised contempt for the great unwashed prevents them from conceding a modicum of serious thought to those who dare oppose them.”

    Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else? :)

    No, seriously, Veith said, “He is essentially arguing that those who used to claim that they were ‘the party of the common people’ now hold the opinions of the ‘common people’ in contempt,” but if you’d presented me with Veith’s quote sans context, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you which party was being referred to.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Katy (@8) largely beat me to it, but I can’t resist …

    “A comeuppance is due the arrogant elites whose undisguised contempt for the great unwashed prevents them from conceding a modicum of serious thought to those who dare oppose them.”

    Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else? :)

    No, seriously, Veith said, “He is essentially arguing that those who used to claim that they were ‘the party of the common people’ now hold the opinions of the ‘common people’ in contempt,” but if you’d presented me with Veith’s quote sans context, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you which party was being referred to.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    And now some responses …

    Porcell (@2) mocks Bryan for “the dream of a third party that will come riding in on a white horse and save the day,” and then — with nary a trace of irony — goes on to tout how Paul Ryan will come riding in on a white horse and save the Republican Party. Even Ted Gayer, former visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, writing at the Tax Policy Center, noted that “Ryan’s proposal would lead to federal tax revenue of approximately 16 percent of GDP, which amounts to a $4 trillion revenue shortfall over ten years.” Needs a little work.

    Porcell concluded, “However, should the Republican Party become complacent after 2010 and 2012 with their Beltway power, as happened In the Bush/Abramoff years, then it would be possible for the American people turn to a third party.” Funny, I thought you’d lived in America for a bit longer than that, Porcell. Yes, the Republicans will become complacent when they gain power. No, that will not cause Americans to turn to a third party. They’ll turn back to the Democrats. Recent history? Anyone? Bueller?

    No offense, Bryan (@1). I share your wishes. But I’d bet you a six-pack of your finest local beer that “a third party that is actually different from the status quo” will not emerge in the next decade. It’s a win-win bet for me!

    And, replying to an article in which Krauthammer said, “What’s a liberal to do? Pull out the bigotry charge, the trump that preempts debate and gives no credit to the seriousness and substance of the contrary argument,” Don — with nary a trace of irony — laments (@6) “Typical Democratic racist group think” and the way they “play minorities and ‘the poor’ for suckers”. Now who’s the condescending elitist, hmm?

    Man, two years later, and look who’s all starry-eyed and clamoring for hope and change. Guess they didn’t learn, either.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    And now some responses …

    Porcell (@2) mocks Bryan for “the dream of a third party that will come riding in on a white horse and save the day,” and then — with nary a trace of irony — goes on to tout how Paul Ryan will come riding in on a white horse and save the Republican Party. Even Ted Gayer, former visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, writing at the Tax Policy Center, noted that “Ryan’s proposal would lead to federal tax revenue of approximately 16 percent of GDP, which amounts to a $4 trillion revenue shortfall over ten years.” Needs a little work.

    Porcell concluded, “However, should the Republican Party become complacent after 2010 and 2012 with their Beltway power, as happened In the Bush/Abramoff years, then it would be possible for the American people turn to a third party.” Funny, I thought you’d lived in America for a bit longer than that, Porcell. Yes, the Republicans will become complacent when they gain power. No, that will not cause Americans to turn to a third party. They’ll turn back to the Democrats. Recent history? Anyone? Bueller?

    No offense, Bryan (@1). I share your wishes. But I’d bet you a six-pack of your finest local beer that “a third party that is actually different from the status quo” will not emerge in the next decade. It’s a win-win bet for me!

    And, replying to an article in which Krauthammer said, “What’s a liberal to do? Pull out the bigotry charge, the trump that preempts debate and gives no credit to the seriousness and substance of the contrary argument,” Don — with nary a trace of irony — laments (@6) “Typical Democratic racist group think” and the way they “play minorities and ‘the poor’ for suckers”. Now who’s the condescending elitist, hmm?

    Man, two years later, and look who’s all starry-eyed and clamoring for hope and change. Guess they didn’t learn, either.

  • Tom Hering

    Well, Todd, at least Krauthammer and company are taking the high road by stirring up class consciousness and conflict. Yeah, that’ll be good for America’s future.

  • Tom Hering

    Well, Todd, at least Krauthammer and company are taking the high road by stirring up class consciousness and conflict. Yeah, that’ll be good for America’s future.

  • Porcell

    Todd, you’re selectively using Ted Gayer as a source. Gayer actually has great respect for Paul Ryan. In a Christian Science Monitor blog article, Rep. Paul Ryan’s tax reform is no flimflam Despite recent criticism, the GOP’s Paul Ryan is proposing serious tax reform. Gayer writes:

    First, it is worth citing budget estimates from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). According to CBO, Congressman Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future Act would dramatically reduce the build up of America’s debt. CBO estimates that his plan would result in a debt to gross domestic product ratio (GDP) of 69 percent in 2020, rising to 99 percent in 2040, and then decreasing to 77 percent in 2060.

    …TPC did analyze Ryan’s tax-specific proposals and found they would fall short of this revenue goal. For example, Ryan’s proposal would lead to federal tax revenue of approximately 16 percent of GDP, which amounts to a $4 trillion revenue shortfall over ten years compared to the alternative fiscal scenario. But that doesn’t mean that Ryan’s plan is a fraud. Instead, it shows that Ryan’s vision of broad-based tax reform, which essentially would shift us toward a consumption tax, needs to be adjusted in order to meet his stated goal of matching historical levels of revenue as a proportion of GDP.

    This indeed poses a challenge to Congressman Ryan to make specific changes to his tax reform plan in order to meet his revenue goal. Reasonable people can disagree about whether we should close our long-term fiscal gap primarily through spending reductions or tax increases, but Congressman Ryan’s proposal makes a useful contribution to this debate.

    Ryan has said all along that his policy proposals are not carved in stone and will need more analysis and adjustment.

    As to your view that the Republicans shall fail and the Democrats replace them again,we shall see. The American public is thoroughly agitated by the shenanigans of the political class in n Washington, especially those of the spendthrift Democrats. So far, the Democrats have not produced anyone with the with the sort of vision and plan of a Ryan.

    The Republicans in New Jersey and Virginia have produced two governors that are effectively dealing with their state’s problems.I’m not aware of similarly effective Democrat governors. Often in American politics effective state governors show the nation a better way.

    Todd, You’re selectively using Ted Gayer. In a Christian Science Monitor article, Rep. Paul Ryan’s tax reform is no flimflam Gayer writes:

    …First, it is worth citing budget estimates from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). According to CBO, Congressman Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future Act would dramatically reduce the build up of America’s debt. CBO estimates that his plan would result in a debt to gross domestic product ratio (GDP) of 69 percent in 2020, rising to 99 percent in 2040, and then decreasing to 77 percent in 2060.

    …TPC did analyze Ryan’s tax-specific proposals and found they would fall short of this revenue goal. For example, Ryan’s proposal would lead to federal tax revenue of approximately 16 percent of GDP, which amounts to a $4 trillion revenue shortfall over ten years compared to the alternative fiscal scenario. But that doesn’t mean that Ryan’s plan is a fraud. Instead, it shows that Ryan’s vision of broad-based tax reform, which essentially would shift us toward a consumption tax, needs to be adjusted in order to meet his stated goal of matching historical levels of revenue as a proportion of GDP.

    This indeed poses a challenge to Congressman Ryan to make specific changes to his tax reform plan in order to meet his revenue goal. Reasonable people can disagree about whether we should close our long-term fiscal gap primarily through spending reductions or tax increases, but Congressman Ryan’s proposal makes a useful contribution to this debate.

    As to the Democrats retaking Washington after the inevitable Republican failure, we shall see. So far, the Dems have produced no one comparable to Ryan or the effective Republican governors, Mitch Daniels of Indiana, Chris Christie of New Jersry, and Bob McDonnell of Virginia.

  • Porcell

    Todd, you’re selectively using Ted Gayer as a source. Gayer actually has great respect for Paul Ryan. In a Christian Science Monitor blog article, Rep. Paul Ryan’s tax reform is no flimflam Despite recent criticism, the GOP’s Paul Ryan is proposing serious tax reform. Gayer writes:

    First, it is worth citing budget estimates from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). According to CBO, Congressman Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future Act would dramatically reduce the build up of America’s debt. CBO estimates that his plan would result in a debt to gross domestic product ratio (GDP) of 69 percent in 2020, rising to 99 percent in 2040, and then decreasing to 77 percent in 2060.

    …TPC did analyze Ryan’s tax-specific proposals and found they would fall short of this revenue goal. For example, Ryan’s proposal would lead to federal tax revenue of approximately 16 percent of GDP, which amounts to a $4 trillion revenue shortfall over ten years compared to the alternative fiscal scenario. But that doesn’t mean that Ryan’s plan is a fraud. Instead, it shows that Ryan’s vision of broad-based tax reform, which essentially would shift us toward a consumption tax, needs to be adjusted in order to meet his stated goal of matching historical levels of revenue as a proportion of GDP.

    This indeed poses a challenge to Congressman Ryan to make specific changes to his tax reform plan in order to meet his revenue goal. Reasonable people can disagree about whether we should close our long-term fiscal gap primarily through spending reductions or tax increases, but Congressman Ryan’s proposal makes a useful contribution to this debate.

    Ryan has said all along that his policy proposals are not carved in stone and will need more analysis and adjustment.

    As to your view that the Republicans shall fail and the Democrats replace them again,we shall see. The American public is thoroughly agitated by the shenanigans of the political class in n Washington, especially those of the spendthrift Democrats. So far, the Democrats have not produced anyone with the with the sort of vision and plan of a Ryan.

    The Republicans in New Jersey and Virginia have produced two governors that are effectively dealing with their state’s problems.I’m not aware of similarly effective Democrat governors. Often in American politics effective state governors show the nation a better way.

    Todd, You’re selectively using Ted Gayer. In a Christian Science Monitor article, Rep. Paul Ryan’s tax reform is no flimflam Gayer writes:

    …First, it is worth citing budget estimates from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). According to CBO, Congressman Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future Act would dramatically reduce the build up of America’s debt. CBO estimates that his plan would result in a debt to gross domestic product ratio (GDP) of 69 percent in 2020, rising to 99 percent in 2040, and then decreasing to 77 percent in 2060.

    …TPC did analyze Ryan’s tax-specific proposals and found they would fall short of this revenue goal. For example, Ryan’s proposal would lead to federal tax revenue of approximately 16 percent of GDP, which amounts to a $4 trillion revenue shortfall over ten years compared to the alternative fiscal scenario. But that doesn’t mean that Ryan’s plan is a fraud. Instead, it shows that Ryan’s vision of broad-based tax reform, which essentially would shift us toward a consumption tax, needs to be adjusted in order to meet his stated goal of matching historical levels of revenue as a proportion of GDP.

    This indeed poses a challenge to Congressman Ryan to make specific changes to his tax reform plan in order to meet his revenue goal. Reasonable people can disagree about whether we should close our long-term fiscal gap primarily through spending reductions or tax increases, but Congressman Ryan’s proposal makes a useful contribution to this debate.

    As to the Democrats retaking Washington after the inevitable Republican failure, we shall see. So far, the Dems have produced no one comparable to Ryan or the effective Republican governors, Mitch Daniels of Indiana, Chris Christie of New Jersry, and Bob McDonnell of Virginia.

  • SKPeterson

    As I recall, the Republicans were once a third party. But, back then, you couldn’t manipulate the electoral system to exclude third parties.

  • SKPeterson

    As I recall, the Republicans were once a third party. But, back then, you couldn’t manipulate the electoral system to exclude third parties.

  • Booklover

    I don’t have a great inclination to get involved in a political discussion, but I find it interesting that John #21 exemplified the argument that the original columnist was making:

    “Instead of arguing for their positions, liberals have become reduced to labeling everyone who disagrees with them a bigot”

  • Booklover

    I don’t have a great inclination to get involved in a political discussion, but I find it interesting that John #21 exemplified the argument that the original columnist was making:

    “Instead of arguing for their positions, liberals have become reduced to labeling everyone who disagrees with them a bigot”

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Porcell (@30), I’m not “selectively using” Gayer, I’m pointing out that even those who sympathetic to Ryan’s Roadmap note its rather substantial failings. Honestly, $4 trillion over 10 years. And this is the best we can hope for from the would-be party of fiscal accountability?

    I maintain that you are naively enchanted by this plan. Of course it could be tweaked to make it better! Any legislation can be tweaked to make it better! But Ryan didn’t even do that to begin with — his plan remarkably fails to meet his own goals. And this is merely his suggestions in the idealistic phase, without the inevitable compromises that would come if it were to be turned into an actual bill, much less law. No, even at this idealistic phase, Ryan’s Roadmap fails.

    And if you believe that Ryan’s fellow Republicans are going to be modifying his plan so as to make it more fiscally responsible, I will again submit that you have fallen for the same starry-eyed hope and change hoo-hah that you so readily lament in the liberals you loathe.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Porcell (@30), I’m not “selectively using” Gayer, I’m pointing out that even those who sympathetic to Ryan’s Roadmap note its rather substantial failings. Honestly, $4 trillion over 10 years. And this is the best we can hope for from the would-be party of fiscal accountability?

    I maintain that you are naively enchanted by this plan. Of course it could be tweaked to make it better! Any legislation can be tweaked to make it better! But Ryan didn’t even do that to begin with — his plan remarkably fails to meet his own goals. And this is merely his suggestions in the idealistic phase, without the inevitable compromises that would come if it were to be turned into an actual bill, much less law. No, even at this idealistic phase, Ryan’s Roadmap fails.

    And if you believe that Ryan’s fellow Republicans are going to be modifying his plan so as to make it more fiscally responsible, I will again submit that you have fallen for the same starry-eyed hope and change hoo-hah that you so readily lament in the liberals you loathe.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Both parties cater to constituencies to get elected and further the goals of those who give money to get them reelected. Neither is sincere or civic minded. Since we have huge single member districts, political patronage/influence peddling is very lucrative and new parties have incredible difficulty getting off the ground. It is just manufactured consent, as Noam Chomsky says.

    Repeat after me:

    The Republican Party is not fiscally responsible.

    The Republican Party is not socially conservative.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Both parties cater to constituencies to get elected and further the goals of those who give money to get them reelected. Neither is sincere or civic minded. Since we have huge single member districts, political patronage/influence peddling is very lucrative and new parties have incredible difficulty getting off the ground. It is just manufactured consent, as Noam Chomsky says.

    Repeat after me:

    The Republican Party is not fiscally responsible.

    The Republican Party is not socially conservative.

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ carol-Christian Soldier

    I see a new “black regiment” (Pastors -black vestments) -
    my chosen Pastor being one of them-
    UCLA-Chapel Pastor -Mark Jasa-on panel:
    http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/2010/08/pastor-is-bold-and-unapologetic-ucla.html
    Standing down is no longer an option for me!
    Carol-CS
    Pres. LA Lutherans for Life.

  • http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/ carol-Christian Soldier

    I see a new “black regiment” (Pastors -black vestments) -
    my chosen Pastor being one of them-
    UCLA-Chapel Pastor -Mark Jasa-on panel:
    http://carolmsblog.blogspot.com/2010/08/pastor-is-bold-and-unapologetic-ucla.html
    Standing down is no longer an option for me!
    Carol-CS
    Pres. LA Lutherans for Life.

  • Colin Liske

    Calling other people names like ‘bigot,’ homophobe, Islamophobe,’ or whatever else it may be, is simply illogical. We used to call such things the fallacy of the ad hominem argument, and therefore illogical.

    And its also a sin against the eighth commandment.

  • Colin Liske

    Calling other people names like ‘bigot,’ homophobe, Islamophobe,’ or whatever else it may be, is simply illogical. We used to call such things the fallacy of the ad hominem argument, and therefore illogical.

    And its also a sin against the eighth commandment.

  • Pete

    Is it okay to be a phobophobe?

  • Pete

    Is it okay to be a phobophobe?

  • http://theoldadam.wordpress.com Steve Martin

    Liberals are just plain nasty people who believe they have the right to run people’s lives.

    I know, I know…I’m a liberalphobe.

    Yes, Virgina…I am.

  • http://theoldadam.wordpress.com Steve Martin

    Liberals are just plain nasty people who believe they have the right to run people’s lives.

    I know, I know…I’m a liberalphobe.

    Yes, Virgina…I am.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    HEY, where did the cool Russia pictures go?

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    HEY, where did the cool Russia pictures go?

  • Tom Hering

    Steve Martin @ 38, what sort of liberal is “just plain nasty”? A classical liberal? An egalitarian liberal? A social liberal? A humanist liberal? Or perhaps a liberal conservative? There must be an awful lot of “just plain nasty” people around, as there aren’t too many people around – in the West, anyways – who aren’t some form of liberal.

  • Tom Hering

    Steve Martin @ 38, what sort of liberal is “just plain nasty”? A classical liberal? An egalitarian liberal? A social liberal? A humanist liberal? Or perhaps a liberal conservative? There must be an awful lot of “just plain nasty” people around, as there aren’t too many people around – in the West, anyways – who aren’t some form of liberal.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Actually most liberals are nice enough if you know them personally. They just don’t have a firm grasp on human nature and cause/effect relationships.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Actually most liberals are nice enough if you know them personally. They just don’t have a firm grasp on human nature and cause/effect relationships.


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