The Thing that Used to Be Conservatism…

…continues its descent into madness with not one, but two stirring defenses of peeing on corpses. West, to his credit, thinks the troops need disciplined but also makes the reasonable point that slack must be cut to troops under intense strain. Fair enough. But the chickenhawk draft dodgers at the Weekly Standard bury that lede and instead have the temerity to headline “Shut up!” to normal people appalled by the ugliness of this embarrassing scene from their war, which has subjected these troops to the horrific strain they have been under, while the laptop bombardiers at the Weekly Standard do not lift a finger to go fight themselves. Instead, the damp-handed false prophets like Bill Kristol just keep coming up with new wars to send these exhausted men and women into.

Meanwhile the bloggers at the second link actually try to get us to believe that peeing on corpses is not an ugly fruit of the ugly thing that is war, but a glorious act worthy of celebration. For these cowards, every war is always World War II–and somebody else is always fighting it for them.

Amazing. What does the Right stand for these days? Zeal for endless preemptive war in defiance of Holy Church–and for sending somebody else to fight it, as well as leaving them to joblessness if they return and quietly dumping their remains in landfills if they don’t for ten years. Pettifogging excuses for Torture. Seducing prolifers into cheering for “wonderful” murder. Leading the charge for indefinite detention of citizens. Serial adultery. Peeing on corpses. Rich chickenhawk congresscritters screaming at moms with two kids and two jobs to join the military as proof of their love of families. Calling health care a privilege, not a right and cheering for the death of uninsured people. Good Christian folk booing that peacenik commie wimp Jesus when Ron Paul says we need to follow the Golden Rule in our foreign policy. Paranoid brainless identity politics ready to accuse anybody who questions this madness of sleeping with the Enemy and being (gasp!) a liberal!

And soon: a Plastic Android capping his career of corporate piracy with the bauble of the presidency, the better to finish looting the rest of us. Another Empty Suit who is pro-choice, emblematic of everything that’s wrong about the incestuous marriage of Caesar and Mammon, and utterly without principles. Aside from pretending to be anti-abortion every four years in order to wrangle the suckers back on to the plantation with empty promises, what exactly does this debased and depraved shell of conservatism, perfectly incarnate in this hollowed-out shell of a politician, have to offer? Does anybody in their five wits believe that should the Plastic Android become President, he will give a rip about nominating judges who will overturn Roe?

This guy? Really? 

Uh huh. Just look at the burning concern for the least of these. And we are–seriously?–expected to believe that this utterly fake imitation of a public servant–whom Mary Ann Glendon preposterously declares a “a great success story for the pro-life movement” and Jim DeMint says “feels passionately that the value of human life begins at conception”–is to be believed when he only came to this “passionate feeling” after consulting polls? And once again I will be told I must support this fraud or face the excommunicating wrath of “conservatives” who will, once again, tell me I hate America, babies and God if I don’t.

Goodbye to all that. This hollowed-out corpse of a political philosophy can’t die fast enough. Happily, it is earnestly laboring to commit suicide as it solidifies behind this utter mockery. I just hope it doesn’t burn down the world with it as these bellicose lunatics recklessly plunge us into another war, this time with Iran and (very possibly) Russia (since the Russians warn that an attack on Tehran is an attack on Moscow).

Our hope is not in man. Our hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ and him only.

  • Dave G.

    Out of curiosity, but doesn’t Ron Paul support at least a couple of the things that Conservatives are being blasted for? As for Romney’s not caring for the least of these due to his business practices, I heard Paul defending Romney on that point just last week. Same with health care. Paul has made his position on health care pretty clear. I just say that because while nobody is saying Paul is perfect, I sometimes get this feeling that the gist of the relentless assaults on the GOP is sort of ‘all non-Paul’ Republicans, when sometimes things the GOP is being blasted for pertain to Paul as well.

    FWIW, most conservatives I’ve heard discussing the marine issue have said the same: It was wrong and they should be disciplined, but we don’t want a lynching either. I’ve heard or read a half dozen who have said pretty much the same thing.

    • The Deuce

      Yes, I agree. This is one of the few places where I agree with Romney, and Ron Paul did (rightly) defend him on it. All this tripe about how he “loves” firing people is pure demagoguery. When he made that comment, he was talking about how nice it is that you aren’t *forced by law* to use government-granted monopolies for insurance and other service providers. You can “fire” an insurance company (or a cable company, or a plumber, etc) that gives you bad service and hire another one.

      As for his activities at Bain capital, the fact is that if a company just goes out of business, *all* of its employees are out of work. Sometimes you need to let people go to keep a business functioning, and if you can turn it around, maybe it can hire some people back in the future. If companies aren’t allowed to fire people to stay profitable, soon we won’t have any companies or any jobs at all. This idea that it’s always wrong or exploitative to fire people to maintain profits is a case of the general economic fallacy pointed out by Bastiat, where we look only at what is immediately visible (and at immediate motivations) and try to control it by government diktat, and fail to take into account unseen consequences.

      Now, Bain capital failed in some cases (and failure is always a possibility in the real world), and there may possibly have been a few cases where you could speculate that they may or may not have done it on purpose. That doesn’t justify characterizing Romney’s entire career as “corporate piracy” though. He without a doubt rescued and grew many companies (and hence many jobs), and made right by those people who’s pensions and other savings were invested in his company.

      There’s plenty about Romney to bash, but going after him on this particular score is very nearly tantamount to saying that it’s somehow dirty whenever two people freely make a financial transaction without the government dictating everything to them.

  • Andy

    I know that his person Sebastian Junger, is a movie producer and therefore may be suspect, but I think that this part of his article in Sunday’s “Washington Post” puts what has been wrought, with the constant demonization of the other, and the continual war-mongering and fear-mongering, in perspective.

    “The U.S. military should be held to a higher standard, certainly, but it is important to understand the context of the behavior in the video. Clearly, the impulse to desecrate the enemy comes from a very dark and primal place in the human psyche. Once in a while, those impulses are going to break through.
    “There is another context for that behavior, though — a more contemporary one. As a society, we may be disgusted by seeing U.S. Marines urinating on dead Taliban fighters, but we remain oddly unfazed by the fact that, presumably, those same Marines just put high-caliber rounds through the fighters’ chests. American troops are not blind to this irony. They are very clear about the fact that society trains them to kill, orders them to kill and then balks at anything that suggests they have dehumanized the enemy they have killed.
    “But of course they have dehumanized the enemy — otherwise they would have to face the enormous guilt and anguish of killing other human beings. Rather than demonstrate a callous disregard for the enemy, this awful incident might reveal something else: a desperate attempt by confused young men to convince themselves that they haven’t just committed their first murder — that they have simply shot some coyotes on the back 40.
    “It doesn’t work, of course, but it gets them through the moment; it gets them through the rest of the patrol.”
    It seems we keep discovering how difficult it is to compartmentalize war in a way that allows us to separate its glories and its crimes.

    However, since so many of these candidates have never served, they don’t care and they aren’t about to change. After all it is what I say, not what I did or do that counts. They model that compartmentalization so very well. (This included by the way liberals).

    • Dan

      Really, though, would you pee on a couple of coyotes that you shot on the back forty?

      • Chris M

        Maybe.. if the coyotes were lying in ambush with AKs and RPGs trying to kill me and my buddies. I still think it’s inexcusable for the Marines, even if I sympathize with the impulse and don’t wish to see them drawn and quartered over it.

      • Andy

        I think what I posted refers more to the dehumanization that our constant wars (last ten years), our demonizing of anyone who is different, and our the fact that our leaders compartmentalize their lives and keep their hands clean from the horrors of war.
        Peeing on these dead bodies is a symptom of a problem – we have unleashed in our country a level of suspicion and hatred that leads people who “know better” to put away their backgrounds and act in ways that allow them to escape the evil they in which they find themselves.

  • Dave

    Jim DeMint also had a lot of good things to say about Ron Paul. I’m not sure why DeMint is taking the easy way out and not endorsing a candidate. Paul did get an important endorsement on Sunday, though, in Tom Davis.

  • Ben Douglass

    This article brings some balance to the discussion of what Romney did at Bain:

  • Sean O

    Mary Ann Glendone’s full on support of Romney is very troubling. As is the fact she did so with 4 other former US ambassadors to the Vatican. This is a stupid move. It feels motivated by partisan not Pro-Life concerns. It is damaging to Pro-Life credibility. It is the bizarre spectacle of Pro-Life “Twilight Zone” enthusiasm for Sen. Scott Brown all over again.

    Instead of selling their soul for Wales, “for Wales? Mary Glendon” they’ve sold out for Romney & Mammon.

  • Rosemarie


    So urinating into a river is equivalent to urinating on someone’s corpse? Human remains have no more dignity than a body of water? (Yet they probably recognize the disrespect implicit in dumping military remains in a landfill.) Stupid, unChristian “reasoning” to justify a profoundly demeaning and immature act.

  • Lisa

    Then there’s the candidate who said that AIDS had been created in a U.S. government laboratory at Fort Detrick, Maryland. The same guy whose newsletter praised the “1,500 local militias now training to defend liberty” as “one of the most encouraging developments in America.” The guy who offered specific advice to antigovernment militia members, such as, “Keep the group size down,” “Keep quiet and you’re harder to find,” “Leave no clues,” “Avoid the phone as much as possible,” and “Don’t fire unless fired upon, but if they mean to have a war, let it begin here.” But he said all that in the 90′s, back when Romney was pro-choice. I hope they both have changed.

  • Michaelus

    Well we have been running as fast as we can from the sixth corporal work of mercy for some time. It is now a quaint superstition. Poll your friends and ask them if they believe in an actual resurrection or if they tend to think we get sent to some dreamy astral plane and dwell with the spirits in the realm of pure being….

    I think the Marines ought to be disciplined – but I think that that “Bodyworlds” guy ought to be hung.

    • Lisa

      ***Poll your friends and ask them if they believe in an actual resurrection or if they tend to think we get sent to some dreamy astral plane and dwell with the spirits in the realm of pure being….***

      Well, I can answer that by quoting – help me, is it Pelikan? – who said:

      “If Christ is risen, nothing else matters. If Christ is not risen, nothing else matters.”

      I, and my friends belong to the former camp. As far as the astral plane goes, I am all for the phenomenal world. I simply do not extend it to pre-human history, as the notion of time makes no sense as separate from humans. It’s like saying, “what if you went to the very edge of outer space and then went one millimeter further.” It’s obsurd because space is the human construct of physical separation. Similarly, time is the human construct of the separation of events. I am not as crazy as you imply, but very close.

      Here’s a question for Darwinians: if humans evolved gradually from apes, did the human soul do the same? Or was there one particular fellow, say Adam, whose parents were the last soul-less apes to tro the earth? Fun thoeolgy, eh?

      • Mark Shea
      • Mark Shea

        So you are seriously saying that space and time only exist in your mind? Or what?

        • Lisa

          ***So you are seriously saying that space and time only exist in your mind? Or what?***

          YES. And there is a lot of extra space in my mind.

          • Mark Shea

            Wow. Solipsists for Jesus.

  • Bruce

    So, if Obama, Romney, Paul, Newt, Perry, Bachman, and Santorum are out, who are you voting for, Mark?

    • Mark Shea

      I didn’t say Paul was out.

      • Bruce

        Ah, my apologies. I was beginning to think you knew of some other candidate out there that I was not aware of.

        For the record, I endorse a bag of hammers.

  • Jon W

    BTW, that picture of Romney and Co is breathtakingly horrible. These are grown men, presumably given the best our society has to offer in the way of education and advantages, and they think getting their picture taken with cash like that is cool? I hope every single one of them blushes at night when he thinks of that picture.

    • Ben Douglass

      I wouldn’t take it too seriously. I’d take it as nerds in the money business doing outtakes for fun.

  • Ben Douglass

    “Our hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ and him only.”

    Supernatural hope is in Jesus Christ only. Natural hope for a natural good, such as the overturning of Roe v. Wade, can rest in a man, for example Romney.

    “And soon: a Plastic Android capping his career of corporate piracy with the bauble of the presidency, the better to finish looting the rest of us.”

    A “career of corporate piracy” is an inaccurate portrayal of what Romney did at Bain. As for his motivations for seeking the presidency, I don’t know Romney’s heart well enough to confidently proclaim them to be exclusively or even primarily egotistical and venal, and I don’t think you do either, Mark. He wants to effect a turnaround for our declining nation. If I had to guess, I’d say his motivations are a mixture of patriotic, philanthropic, and egotistical, which is the best one can hope for in a politician.

    “pretending to be anti-abortion every four years in order to wrangle the suckers back on to the plantation with empty promises”

    That’s one reading of Romney’s record on abortion. A reading that fits the evidence better is a 2004 conversion (which did not help him politically in Massachusetts), followed by a solidifying of the conversion.

    • Mark Shea

      That’s one reading of Romney’s record on abortion. A reading that fits the evidence better is a 2004 conversion (which did not help him politically in Massachusetts), followed by a solidifying of the conversion.

      Nope. As Tina Korbe says, “It’s a nice, feel-good sentiment, and I really want to fall for it. But, somehow, I still can’t get past Romneycare, which allows for taxpayer-funded, elective, surgical abortions. Then, too, Romney granted pro-choice judge Matthew Nestor a lifetime appointment in a Massachusetts court (albeit a court that deals with civil and criminal issues, not constitutional issues like abortion rights). He also paved the way for the approval of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Worcester, Mass., that would provide abortions. All of that was after his 2004 pro-life “conversion.” In that context, the pro-life accomplishments cited by Glendon seem less the work of one who is committed to eradicate abortion than one who wants to make abortion “safe, legal and rare.”

      Don’t delude yourself. He. Doesn’t. Care. He will say anything. His “conversion” happened after consulting a poll.

  • Rosemarie


    >>>Does anybody in their five wits believe that should the Plastic Android become President, he will give a rip about nominating judges who will overturn Roe?

    While I can’t say with 100% certainty that he will, I can say with 100% certainty that Obama won’t nominate any judges who will overturn Roe. On the contrary, he’d stack the court with ultra-leftist pro-choicers, given half the chance. The most I can say about Romney is that he is more likely than Obama to choose judges who will rule sanely on abortion as well as other constitutional issues.

  • Lloyd Petre

    Well, lookee here.

    Catholics Shifting to Romney?
    by Ryan Girdusky

    Despite the best efforts of Rick Santorum, so far in this early primary cycle, Mitt Romney is winning over the ultimate swing voters–Catholics.

    In Iowa, Romney won 10 of the 25 most Catholic counties in the state. In New Hampshire, the Catholic vote which represents 35% of the state broke in favor of Romney over Ron Paul (the 2nd place finish) by a margin of 45% to 17%. And most recently, Romney has received the endorsement of five former ambassadors to the Holy See.
    Thomas Patrick Melady, Raymond L. Flynn, James Nicholson, Francis Rooney and Mary Ann Glendon all signed the letter, which applauded Romney for realizing “that sound economic and social policies must rest on a healthy culture.” The ambassadors called Romney the “best qualified” candidate for the nation’s highest office. These ambassadors have served under presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush.
    The Catholic vote has been the largest swing vote since the last half of the 20th century to the present. While there is a divide amongst Hispanic Catholics and the descendants of European Catholics, the vote overall total has been fairly split over recent elections. According to media exit polls, Obama won the Catholic vote 54%-45% and won the White House 53%-46%. George W. Bush won the Catholic vote in 2004, 52%-47% and won the Presidency 51%-48%. These models hold true going back to 1972, when Richard Nixon won the Catholic vote 54%-44% and won the popular vote 61%-38% nationally.
    Catholics make up is 72 million strong: 59% European American, 32% Hispanic, 4% Black, and 5% other. Catholics voters make up a large portion in several swing states including Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Florida, and New Mexico.
    Interestingly enough, while the Catholic vote is large, it is not baited as often as other religious groups. A seven point swing in the Catholic vote in favor of the Republicans would be the same difference as an 80 point swing in the Jewish vote in terms of real numbers. Essentially, the Catholic vote is as large as the Evangelical vote but hardly has the same clout or receives the same amount of attention as the Evangelical right.
    If Romney can win a majority of Catholics in the primary and carry this onward into the general, the Catholic vote could be the special ingredient in the new GOP majority.

    Of particular note, the article states that Romney is beating Paul almost 3 to 1 among Catholic voters. Given huge import that Mark gives to the fact that military donations go to Paul in roughly the same proportions what ever are we to make of this?

    • Mark Shea

      That you can some of the people some of the time? After all, Catholics also helped get Obama elected. The Wisdom of the Voters.

  • Alexis C.

    My husband (who, ftr, is non-Catholic, and fairly — gasp! — liberal) has a theory: The GOP does not REALLY want abortion to be made illegal, because they have a large number of people who vote for them solely because they can’t bring themselves to vote for a pro-choice candidate. If abortion becomes a non-issue, they lose those voters. (IMHO, it’s just awful enough to be true, though I have no doubt there are some politicians who do genuinely want to see an end to abortion.)

    • Mark Shea

      I think that’s about right. They’ve never done anything to indicate this is a priority matter for them. They offer little sops. But the obvious energy has gone toward war, mammon, and gaining more power.