Well that didn’t take long

Somebody wrote to emotionally defecate on me:

“so how do you feel now, Mark, knowing that you helped reelect the Butcher of Kenya? you are the traitor here, and no one else. I sincerely hope you repent before you die. The supreme court will be the biggest death panel in the history of the world, thanks to those who helped usher in the true Dark Ages, which begin this very night.”

My reply: Thank you for that hysterical rant. Here’s some reality: I did not help elect Obama since I did not vote for him. I didn’t owe Romney my vote since I do not work for him nor for the GOP. He was applying for a job from me and his qualifications, like Obama’s were unacceptable so I refused to hire them. Dems believe we belong to the State. Movement “Conservatives” believe we belong to the Party. These are lies. They work for us, not we for them. The Right needs to stop living in utter delusion and begin to treat with reality again if it hopes to succeed. First hint: when you nominate a candidate as crappy as Mitt Romney, consider the possibility that when you get your butt handed you, it’s not because some obscure blogger would not eat the crap sandwich, but because you stupidly nominated an incredibly crappy candidate and then insisted everybody eat a crap sandwich. That’s stupid politics, and people who practice stupid politics lose and deserve to lose. Here is what, right now, the Thing that Used to be Conservatism should be focused on: “What did we do wrong? How can we do better next time?” First step: stop believing idiots who tell you that Obama is a Kenyan, as well as every other stupid paranoid conspiracy theory pedaled by FOX and World Nut Daily. That’s living in illusion. You need to face reality.

So, for instance when I post a link to a story like this, detailing just how crazy the Right can be and linking all the source materials documenting that fact, the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism has not, for 10 years, typically said “Yikes! That’s pretty bad! What can we do to learn from our mistakes and not foster belief in idiotic conspiracy theories, but rather treat with reality?”

Instead, the typical response is “Eek! A ritually impure source of information! Anybody who gets information from that source is bad and all the information that source relays is worthless because it was relayed by that source and not by ritually pure sources who tell me what I already think, always condemn my enemies, always tell me how good and smart I am, and never ask me to think anything that discomforts me or challenges my tribe’s penchant for loony conspiracy theories.” What that results in, over time, is things like last night, where a shocked “conservative” movement was stunned to discover that all the predictions of a Romney win–a Romney *landslide* if you please–were bunk promulgated by people who were not treating with reality. Now there is a great temptation to continue the pattern the Right has pursued for 10 years: looking for heretics, seeking fifth columnists to blame, searching for conspiracies, and kicking people like me as baby-killing “traitors” because we could not muscle down the load of bull that Mitt Romney was selling as he advocated for grave instrinsic evil (including, yes, abortion “for the health of the mother”). This is a stupid course to pursue, unless you want to keep losing.

Happily, there remain, on the Right, conservatives who are actually able to conserve things and learn from the past. If the Right wants to actually win in the future they need to honor and promote such people, and stop honoring and promoting people who encourage them to live in illusion.

Here is more reality. The Thing that Used to be Conservatism did not lose because of a conspiracy, or because some guy on a blog was so prolife that he refused to vote for a GOP pro-abort as well as a Dem one. It did not lose because Dark Forces were in league against us. It did not lose because the American electorate has been taken over by fiends and fools. The proportion of fiends and fools is relatively stable in our history. It did not lose because the governor of a state slammed by Sandy took his responsibility to the people of NJ as a priority over politics or said “Thank you” to Obama for helping hurting people, thereby revealing himself as a monstrous turncoat. The Thing That Used to be Conservatism lost because “conservatives”, of their own free will, chose to nominate Willard Mitt Romney.

There’s your problem right there.

And your secondary problem–as with the choice to pretend Romney was “prolife”, and to nominate John McCain, and pretend Sarah Palin was a brilliant choice, and support the Iraq War, and support Bush and a brutal draft-dodger Veep who said “deficits don’t matter” and lie that torture is an American value compatible with the faith and do the many other stupid things the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism has done–is that instead of learning from our sins and mistakes and repenting them, we have instead chosen to surround ourselves with a leadership and a pundit class that tells us our failures are somebody else’s fault. It’s the media’s fault. It’s Obama’s fault. It’s Hollywood’s fault. It’s the fault of third party voters and bloggers with some miniscule readership. (Fun Fact: So far each state reporting an Obama victory won it with at least 50% of the vote. Which means all those people who voted 3rd party instead of Romney had nothing to do with Obama winning re-election.)

No. It’s the fault of the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism. Romney was a terrible candidate. His campaign consisted, in large measure, of telling the rank and file to shut up and get in line. It consisted of ordering people to not believe their own two eyes when this cynical duplicitous liar claimed to be prolife and then made very clear that he supported abortion for “the health of the mother”. It consisted of telling the workihg class and troops living below the poverty line that this bought-and-paid-for plutocrat who dismissed them as part of the 47% cared about them. It consisted of telling people who knew perfectly well that this liar–who forced Catholic hospitals to dispense the morning after pill and assured women that no employer could stand in the way of their contraceptive candy–was serious about the HHS mandate. It consisted of believing that this man who surrounded himself with exactly the circle of maniacs who unleashed the Iraq War would be for peace; and this man who railed at Obama’s weakness in foreign policy could be trusted when he agreed with almost every syllable of it in the debate. It consisted, in short, of completely selling its soul to support a man who was a moral void–and then shouting at those who could *see* he was a moral void that *they* were the problem.

The Thing That Used to be Conservatism is very seriously sick and will die if it does not recover its bearings. I want a healthy conservatism because I want somebody who can credibly oppose the evils of the Left. The way to get that is for the Thing that Used to be Conservatism to become conservative again: to do what the 12 step groups call a “fearless moral inventory” and to stop lying to itself. I don’t say that in order to “save America”. America is terminally mortal, like all earthly things. I hope it prospers for a good long while. But that’s because I hope for a stable civil society in which the Real Story–the progress of the gospel–can continue unmolested. That hope is dimming because the GOP could not produce a candidate capable of beating “the worst President in history” as they perpetually tell the faithful. If Obama really is that terrible, what does it say about how wretched a candidate Romney was that he could not beat him? My concern is and always has been the way in which our politics is increasingly corrupting of our Faith, and in no small measure the way in which it has taught Christians to look first for somebody else to blame when the GOP loses. The Thing that Used to Be Conservatism should have undertaken a massive reassessment when it launched a war in defiance of the Church’s guidance and found no weapons of mass destruction. Instead it lied that the war was really about Iraqi freedom. It should have done it when it plumped for torture. Instead it lied that it was “enhanced interrogation” and was keeping us safe. It should have done it when it said “Deficits don’t matter”. Instead, it helped drive the economy into the ground. It should have done it when it lionized Glenn Beck and drank in every nutty conspiracy theory it could. Instead, it clings to the nuts. It should have done it when it took a pounding in 2008. Instead, it simply flushed the Bush years down the memory hole and learned nothing from McCain’s defeat. And it should have done it when it nominated Mitt Romney. Instead, it shushed every warning about the guy and tried to run a campaign of shouting at people to shut up and trust him. Perhaps now, at last, it will take a good hard look at the world of illusion it has woven around itself.

The way out of illusion is simple and hard: repent and believe the good news. Jesus remains the way, the truth, and the life. I can’t guarantee he will help the GOP win any power. It’s not really his thing. And if we go to him seeking earthly power first we will get nothing. But I can guarantee he will help people live in reality and not illusion. And if we seek first his kingdom, we have it on good authority that other good things will be given. But first we have to really seek first his kingdom.

I’m hopeful that now, at long last, maybe that painful process will begin.

  • Janet O’Connor

    I think that last night’s results showed us some important things. Mitt Romney should not have been the GOP nominee it should have been Ron Paul but as we all know Romney took care of him and his supporters during the voting process and the convention, and they ended up voting for Obama. Ron Paul was the only candidate who could have beaten Obama but the GOP said NO. As far as the issues, yes some clergy and Bishops put out there statements and homilies but its too little too late to complain .Since the late 1960′s the Western Clergy has secretly supported contraception same sex marriage and abortion. The CCHD collection is up before Thanksgiving you know.

    • http://davidgriffey.blogspot.com/ Dave G.

      No, had Paul gotten the nomination, within a week he would have been skinned. We need only remember what happened to him for those few days when everyone thought he might pull Iowa. Once it was clear he would lose, the MSM went back to either ignoring him, or hoisting him as a token ‘Republican who hates Republicans’ for the occasional interview.

    • adele young

      How do you figure Ron Paul was such a *shoe-in* when Romney came within a whisker of winning the White House. Ron Paul never came even close to the nomination. Instead of clinging with those Libertarians who live in lala land, give serious consideration to what happened last night…and just who voted for this disaster.
      All the so-called Americans who are receiving government assistance, the minorities and the ideologues.
      Thinking a Ron Paul candidacy would have garnered a single vote from these greedy and stupid people
      is a joke. All they care about is a room and 3 hots…along with their abortions and birth control pills. Two
      states went ahead and legalized marijuana. Soon we will be paying for that too! The mentality of today’s
      voter is a me first attitude…they just want their goodies! The country be damned. And from the results of
      last night’s election it looks like it finally is! Good luck Janet …and to us all!

      • Allie

        Wow- talk about venom, Adele. I understand frustration with the election, but I think that it is comments like this one of yours: “All the so-called Americans who are receiving government assistance, the minorities and the ideologues. Thinking a Ron Paul candidacy would have garnered a single vote from these greedy and stupid people is a joke.” that will continue to cause the GOP to lose. Wake up, Adele. It’s not just you- I hear this from the so-called “self-made Conservatives” all the time and quite frankly it is mostly a crap line. Remember that whatever YOU have came from GOD- not from yourself and you should be thanking Him for His blessings instead of proclaiming to know the intent of every person and belittling every person who is not as fiscally or culturally “pure” as you presume yourself to be.

        • Mark Shea

          Agreed. One of the things that conservatives who wish to treat with reality should do is stop assuming that social Darwinism and subsidiarity are the same thing. Reflexively regarding the poor and vulnerable as contemptible beasts with hands out, or cheering at the thought that somebody without health insurance died (as some loons at the GOP debate did) sends the message that people struggling to get by in a weak economy are vermin the candidate despises. This was the lesson of the 47% video. Telling the mass of suffering people they are vermin is stupid politics that loses elections and deserves to. Those who wishe to treat with reality need to consider the possibility that those who are weak and struggling should be given what the Church calls the “preferential option for the poor” and not dismissed as moochers, particularly by people who themselves mooch of the state to the tune of billions in bailouts. This, again, is stupid politics that deservedly loses elections. Instead, treat with reality and stop thinking in slogans.

          • Dan

            Mark, I watched much of the debates and the election coverage and never heard “Reflexively regarding the poor and vulnerable as contemptible beasts with hands out, or cheering at the thought that somebody without health insurance died (as some loons at the GOP debate did” I’ve never spoken to a conservative who did any of this. You sound like a campaign worker for Obama. Also, It was Obama who bailed out the rich bankers to to tune of billions. When Romney spoke of the 47% he was not speaking of the folks you describe and if you asked him that direct question you know the answer. But, a large number of folks do make their living off the gov’t dole, Union folks to name one. Obama is the most anti-Catholic, pro-abortion president we’ve ever had and we would have had far greater influence on policy with Romney even if he’s not what he says he is. Obama is nothing if not a lier. The heath care bill was more about Power than helping the poor for the Dems. And as for not voting for Romney or Obama, what does the prayer say “forgive me for what i have done and what I FAILED to do”…

            • Anne

              The union folk have been at work around the clock – sanitation, police, transit,firefighters, teachers, utility workers saving my neighbors from the devasation of hurricane Sandy. Thank you Dan for your support of these heroes. Doubt if you live in NYC area, lost your home or spent days in the wreckage.

              • Dan

                Anne, let me clarify..
                I live in Philly and work in NY. My Father in law works for a major refinery and is a union member. The folks I’m talking about are not the rank n file but the Union establishment that recieves money from the Gov’t and then funnels it back into the election coffers of the Dems. Don’t try to tell me that does not happen. BTW, almost 37% of union folks voted for Romney. There is a stark difference between the teachers in class and the NEA in Washington. These blog posts are for quick short answers that are vulnerable to being poorly stated. But, having said that SEIU, ACCORN and other are corrupt. It’s always easy to point at firefighters and police because of the great work they do, but…I don’t see either the police or firefighters as activist as the other unions I mentioned. So, I stand by my post as accurate and Mark’s lacking.

          • Dan

            Mark, I listened to that 47% video again and Romney didn’t say anything remotely like you describe above. He said specifically that Obama has an advantage with 47% of the population who does not pay taxes and who feel entiled to the gov’t programs. That’s almost a direct quote. Furthermore there is a lot of truth to that statement. healthcare, for example, was promoted as a human right which implies that someone else is obligated to provide it.
            As a conservative I want a good safety net, heath care access for everyone, I just don’t think that gov’t is capable of providing it. For example, there are now millions more who have insurance but not a single extra doctor to care for them. In fact it is likely that the HHS mandate will further reduce care facilities and doctors if it is upheld by the Supreme Court. Add to that the fact that Gov’t always has the added agenda of getting reelected and increasing power that say, The Catholic Church, would not have. It is also a fact that they will infuse the medical system with secular processes, abortion adn contraceptive funding the two most recent examples.

      • Dan C

        Ok. And this is the language that will drive any liberal who is anti-abortion out of the room. A particular line: “minorities and other ideologues…”

        • Mark Shea

          Precisely. Exactly. Dead on.

        • http://janalynmarie.blogspot.com Beadgirl

          Yup. This minority pro-lifer is wondering where she belongs since neither the liberals nor the conservatives want her.

          • http://rayontremblant.wordpress.com Robert

            I feel very much the same way. I know that were I to leave the Church, I would leave Christianity altogether, but I would never do that since there is no other truth that I know. I simply don’t understand how people like this think they’re being good Catholics by being good American right-wingers. The poor catechesis of the past several decades has become a new, more frightening poor catechesis fostered by an aggressive neo-confederacy mentality that I simply don’t know how to face anymore. The barque of Peter was instituted by Christ to save the world, but it seems that only white Americans are welcome in the eyes of some.

            • Mark Shea

              You are welcome here. No black, white, Latino, Jew, male, nor female. Just Christ Jesus.

          • http://adifferentperspective1.blogspot.com/ Jack Quirk

            There is a new group we are forming, currently called the Christian Democratic Party. You are welcome here, Beadgirl: http://www.facebook.com/christiandemocracy

      • http://rayontremblant.wordpress.com Robert

        As a Catholic who happens to be a minority and did not support the POTUS, I simply don’t know what to say. I’m not one to throw around the R word, but I’m just going to call a spade a spade and say that racists are not welcome nor are they appreciated in this community that Mark Shea has created for civil dialogue. Take that to a Fox news combox.

        • Mark Shea

          Bravo. Another thing “Conservatism” needs to confront is the sotto voce racism seen in posts like Adele’s. There’s a lot of it floating around and though the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism lives in denial about it, minorities see it and stay away anyway. If you want to win elections, that’s a politically stupid thing to do and you deserve to lose when you do it.

      • Jamie R

        I can’t imagine why minorities wouldn’t vote for / with people who think they’re only “so-called Americans.”

      • CM

        Adele,
        After that racist diatribe are you honestly wondering why “minorities” voted for Obama. People like you made it crucial to their sense of identity and self preservation. I thank you, however, for your honesty. So many think the same things while uttering far more sanitized code words and phrases.

        • Chris M

          Personally I think it’s the racism on BOTH sides that drove minorities to vote for Obama.

    • tz

      The people detest corruption. Chew up Ron Paul? How? Over the junkets he didn’t take? Over the other perks he never used? Over the lobbyists who wouldn’t visit him? Over his NEVER flip-flopping? Over his utter inability to compromise on anything important or fundamental?

      Yes, 2 weeks they would attack him, then 2 weeks later he would have all the moral authority necessary to win. Honor, integrity, humility. Then the choice would not be who is the lesser evil, but whether you desire your particular cheat, your perjury, your corruption, or will you really vote for a man of virtue whom you keep saying you want.

      Of course it didn’t work in the primaries, it was which evil republican could exorcise the evil democrat. There would be debate on the debt, torture, foreign policy, and everything else. And Paul would have truth on his side. Cafeteria Catholics of the right wanted a corrupt, lying cheater who might be able to beat Obama, not a man of virtue and trust God to give him the victory.

      But remember the Late Arlen Spectre. Santorum said everyone had to vote pro-abort in the primaries, since he promised 2 judges. We got those and Obamacare and the HHS Mandate. Yet Santorum is the darling of the Catholic right. He said he was proud of it. And his amen-chorus sing “yes, it is OK to vote for the pro-abort when you want to”, yet threaten damnation when their friends and families follow their/his example. It was another 51-49. Pat Toomey, 100% pro life would have been there instead, at least if you trust that if you do the right thing, then God will honor your action.

      If you have faith in God, you do the absolute right thing, then wait on the Lord to provide the strength. Battling and compromising and inviting Jesus to help if he wants is a recipe for disaster.

      • Dan C

        Ron Paul needed some flip-flopping as again another who passively allowed racist discussions by Lew Rockwell with little understanding or remorse of the disruption that brings to a diverse society. In the days preceding Ruby Ridge and any of a number of uber-libertarian stands, overt racism played as a dominant theme through that region and through that movement. Lew Rockwell, Ron Paul, and others were unapologetically part of that time and movement. The racist diatribes of the short wave radio set were well-known to many.

        Ron Paul’s denials of involvement and knowledge of such matters smacks more of inability to recognize and admit error.

  • Jane

    We are all to blame–each one 0f us, some more, some less, but still everyone of us. We are too materialistic and indulgent, we all like our stuff –even our bishops. Our stuff includes our comfort level, our convenience, our image, our leisure time, our addictions. No matter what we say, it is really about what we do. When we “do,” most of us do little that demands great sacrifice. Even if we don’t vote our pocketbook and our stuff, voting our principles does not translate into every day practical moral actions. Let’s face it, if we were really serious about abortion, it would have been defeated by now. The fact that 4,000 babies are killed every day is accepted by most Americans on some level. It is easy to denonce abortion, but what percentage of Catholics have prayed at an abortion facility, housed a pregnant girl, worked at a pregnancy center, participated in 40 Days for Life, etc? I would guess maybe 5 %. If we were really serious, we could end abortion tomorrow. We might be “fed to the lions,” but who among us would be willing?” We need to be punished–like the Isrealites of the Northern Kingdom who were conquered and exiled. I am waiting for God’s discipline of our nation.

    • Marthe Lépine

      About this question: “what percentage of Catholics have prayed at an abortion facility, housed a pregnant girl, worked at a pregnancy center, participated in 40 Days for Life, etc?” I would add another one: “What percentage of Catholics have ever considered single mothers who live in poverty as responsible for their own situation and somewhat less deserving…? I have read somewhere in a comment (maybe in another blog) some time ago from a woman who objected to the term “single mother” because it included divorced and widowed women who were not responsible for their predicament, under the same label as unmarried single mothers who are said to have had a choice and therefore should live with its consequences. Since I know several people who work in organizations devoted to prevention and help to victims of sexual assault (which include long-term sexual abuse of kids), I have heard of many cases where the actions that led to unwanted pregnancies were not necessarily freely chosen. Those women may have made one wrong choice, but it was followed by the one that most Catholics want pregnant women to do: not get abortions. In such cases, hints that suggest that we are judging the sinners may have something to do with some women choosing abortion. And another point is that help during pregnancy is not enough, if women are left to raise their children in poverty, without further support, are dismissed as “All the so-called Americans who are receiving government assistance, the minorities and the ideologues (…) these greedy and stupid people (…) All they care about is a room and 3 hots…along with their abortions and birth control pills.” Such an attitude could as well lead a woman to get an abortion the next time…

  • B.E. Ward

    Something changed here in the past 10-15 comments……….

    • Chris M

      newer comments go to another page. Scroll to the bottom to see the link to older comments

  • Ann Erwin

    You have given us much to think about and ponder. Yes, we believed that voting for the “lesser of two evils” might be OK. Now we must start again from the bottom up, or should I say, the top down, beginning with Christ and what He would have us do: put HIM first, last, and always, and trust Him to help us live what our Faith teaches. These should be our guiding principles. Is it time for a new political party, or is there hope for the Republican party? And how do we accomplish that feat-reforming it?

  • Steve

    I’ve got an idea. Let’s abandon our principles and champion abortion, gay marriage, obamacare, wonen in the priesthood, legalize marijuana and same sez marriage, reduced military, abandon Israel, buddy up to Ahmidinijad and Chavez, open the borders, and forty acres and a mule for all black people. That ought to do it.

    • Mark Shea

      Steve: Thanks for that excellent portrayal of exactly the sort of brain-dead tantrum that keeps the Right from asking serious questions about why it is failing. The grace note of racism at the end was particularly telling. And the utter irrelevance about “women in the priesthood” also added that dash of stupidity that makes clear what actual conservatives are up against as they set about the business of attempting to think about their predicament while yammering fools like you are filling the air with ignorant yawps.

      • Steve

        I don’t particularly appreciate being called a yammering fool, Mark. What I am saying is that if the Democrats are winning because they are appealling to people on these issues then what are we supposed to do? It hardly makes sense to abandon our principles in order to get Republicans elected. And the Democrats did use everyone of those issues to win. You interpreted sarcasm as racism and” the women in the priesthood is not irrelevant.” Many people are turned off to Catholicism because of this one issue. So, again, should the church change on this to accomodate them? Immediately after Romney conceded, a slew of pundits made the point that conservatives have to re-think their stance on these issues if they want to regain power. I disagree. I think we have to fight the good fight, win or lose.

        • Mark Shea

          If you do not like being called a yammering fool, then stop acting like one. Only a yammering fool thinks that calling conservatives to return to their principles is a call to abandon them. I interpreted racism as racism. Your words are one more reason the Right lost minorities and Latinos. Why would they support a yammering fool like you? And no, this has nothing to do with women’s ordination and no, the Church should not change. Those who wish to treat with reality don’t drag in in irrelevancies while stupidly linking Church teaching on ordination to their racist bullshit. Part of the problem with the bubble that the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism has created is that it hears all calls for change or reform as an insinuation that it must abandon its principles and simply become Leftist. This reflexive reaction is done by intellectually lazy people like you in order to avoid actually doing the hard work of thinking. That’s what your post was. It was stupid and will only ensure that conservatism continues to lose. It is possible to really think about what is good and bad, prudent and imprudent in conservatism without simply abandoning oneself to Leftist doctrines.

          • David

            Wow. This is the kind of response that leaves you stunned by how nasty it is.

            • Mark Shea

              When people are deaf, you shout. – Flannery O’Connor

              • Jmac

                To be fair, I shout Flannery O’Connor even when people aren’t deaf. I have something of a major crush on her.

            • Michael

              David, I agree. I strolled over here from a link fom one of the other patheos bloggers. Not impressed with the replies so time to go.

            • ivan_the_mad

              No, the comment that elicited such a response is stupid. This is why I have to qualify every declaration of myself as a conservative with “which is emphatically not the same thing as a Republican”.

          • Steve

            I guess irony is not your thing. It is a mistake to link conservativism with Republicans. The current Republican ” establishment” would like to de-couple itself from many conservative principles in order to w in more elections. (or so they seem to think) Conservatives did not embrace Romney ever, but once he was foisted upon us as the nominee supported him as a far better choice than Obama . By the way, Flannery O’Conner routinely referred to black people as niggers. Was she a racist? Here’s a quote for you. “He who calls his brother a fool shall be in danger of hell-fire” Jesus.

            • Mark Shea

              Flannery O’Connor was a Georgian writing in the 1950s about the pathologies of the racist and Christ-haunted South. She used the patois of her culture as a good artist should. Mark Twain likewise used the word “nigger” because he was consciously and carefully attempting to document the various regional dialects of his boyhood–and to show the bitter injustice of slavery and the racism he saw growing up.

              You, however, cannot hide behind the skirts of O’Connor or peep from behind the legs of giant like Twain in order to lie about your racist remark. Here’s a quote for you: Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death, is the man who deceives his neighbor and says, “I am only joking!” (Prov 26:18-19).

              Get off my blog.

              • Brian

                Please, let us be cordial to one another.

                1 Peter 3:8-9 says: “All of you, be of one mind, sympathetic, loving toward one another, compassionate, humble. Do not return evil for evil, or insult for insult; but, on the contrary, a blessing, because to this you were called, that you might inherit a blessing.”

                Let us pray for one another, not insult one another! Let us be gentle and loving in our arguments, asking Jesus how he would respond before we say something insulting. Calling people stupid and fools, even if you think they are those things, is not the type of charitable response the Lord asks us to give.

                Steve and Mark: Apologizing to one another would show a great victory over pride, and stengthen the virtue of humility! Forigve each other from the heart, and pray that we may all one day be sharing in the great gift of eternal life.

                God bless you all, and let us pray together, and for each other, as we look forward to serving our Lord!

    • Jamie R

      What’s wrong with legalizing marijuana, reducing the size of the military, and adopting a less belligerent stance towards Venezuala and Iran, since our current stance is profoundly ineffective and counterproductive? What’s wrong with open borders? Why are you such a racist?

      • http://backoftheworld.com Ryan M.

        CNN quotes an “adviser to one prominent Republican governor who campaigned for Romney,” who has this to say: “The fundamentals of the election were the same all along, and they were this: When there’s an incumbent no one wants to vote for, and a challenger that no one wants to vote for, people will vote for the incumbent. At no point did Romney give people any reason to vote for him, and so they didn’t.”

        Ain’t that the truth… great article, Mark, as always…

        • Ghosty

          Bingo. This is why I was saying Romney had no chance from the primaries, as even the people voting for him didn’t really seem to like him much. He was coronated as the most “presidential” pretty early and over time people fell in line behind him. If you can’t motivated people to vote FOR you, rather than AGAINST the other guy, then you can’t win against an incumbent.

          Even more disturbing was how out of touch with reality the talking heads on the “right” were. I drive around a guy who listens to Rush Limbaugh, and they were always talking about a clear victory for Romney. Turns out the polls were right, not improperly weighted towards Democrats, and even I’m actually surprised by the margin Obama won by because I thought it would be closer.

          If the Republican Party can’t beat a President who spent most of his time with Bush-level approval ratings and four years of recession then they have no business running for the office of President.

          Peace and God bless!

      • Steve

        What is right with legallizing marijuana? The US military is a force for good in this world and a reduced military is not going to further peace, on the contrary it will further the ambitions and boldness of many truly evil actors in this world. Our current stance with Venezuela and Iran is not belligerant but apologetic and is supremely ineffective. What’s wrong with open borders is that because of the current situation, people with no love for this country are free to come here and abuse it. And finally, what is it about you people that you interpret everything as racist? I am less racist than you in all likely hood.

        • Marthe Lépine

          You really believe that “The US military is a force for good in this world and a reduced military is not going to further peace”? I think that you might be deluded… A force for good might have listened to the advice of two Popes and refrained from invading Iraq, for example. And it does not need to be bigger that the militaries of all the other countries of the world put together: on the contrary, it makes it look like it was acting out of fear, seeing enemies everywhere (and maybe unwittingly creating enemies simply because of that attitude). By the way, if my understand is correct, seeing enemies everywhere is called paranoia in mental health circles.

        • Ghosty

          What’s right about legalizing marijuana: it’s one of the most commonly available drugs, prosecution of it hasn’t lowered its use, billions of dollars are wasted on locking people up for using it, its effects are on par with alcohol which is legal, it’s a pile of tax revenue waiting to be collected, the blackmarket of it is dominated by Mexican drug cartels who make billions of dollars selling it illegally, it is currently unregulated and can be easily contaminated with other more dangerous drugs.

          So legalizing it raises a whole new source of untapped revenue while cutting costs in imprisonment. It strips the funding of violent and dangerous drug cartels and puts that money in the hands of American farmers and businesses, plus it saves billions of dollars in court costs and imprisonment. This means our property taxes don’t have to get raised to pay for things, as the money can come from savings and people who use it. Marijuana is not a “good” thing, but it’s not an evil that is worth the loss of potential revenue, the funding of drug cartels, and the expense of prosecution and imprisonment.

          I don’t use it, though I tried it when I was younger and didn’t care for it, but I don’t see a single net negative in legalizing it, and I see a lot of net positives potentially.

          Peace and God bless!

        • Jamie R

          So, the military and drug responses have been handled, but our stance with Iran is apologetic? ARE YOU KIDDING? We just had two presidential candidates, including the victor, tripping over themselves bragging about how they would (or in Obama’s case, have) cripple Iran through sanctions, and issuing ultimata and red lines.

          When Republicans talk about how bad open borders immigration, they show such a profound misunderstanding of economics that it becomes impossible to take anything else they say seriously. People wouldn’t come here if there wasn’t a market for their labor. Immigration is just the labor force meeting the labor market. Immigration restrictions are nothing but apparent trade protectionism, which 1) doesn’t work, since native-borns don’t do those jobs away, and 2) even if it did work, is at least as bad a government intrusion into the market as the minimum wage. I thought conservatives believed in the power of the market?

          • Jamie R

            And since they should know what the market is, there’s one remaining reason so-called conservatives dislike open borders. It starts with ‘R’, and rhymes with ‘acism.’

            I don’t interpret everything as racist, but how the hell else should I interpret “forty acres and a mule for all black people” and whining about how immigrants are abusing America.

  • AJ

    For most part i agree with this article however, Romney failed to win because he took for granted the minorities that could swing the vote for the Presidency. Look at the statistics, good example a very important battle ground State, Florida, Obama had only won 35% of white voters but still won the State, why? Guess. The demogrqphics has shifted, they must face it. When the Republicans who are majority conservative christians choose to say to Latinos and Asian christians to commit suicide by self deportation, thats the end of it, their plans will just stay as opinions.

  • Liam Ronan

    When I supported Rick Santorum in his bid to secure the Republican nomination I was sneered at. I could not believe the venom and sheer mockery that was heaped on that articulate spokesman for a solid Catholic ethic by Breitbart, Drudge, FOX News broadcasters, and their guests.
    I was utterly dismayed when a man I greatly admire, Pat Buchanan, endorsed Romney.
    I was even more dismayed when Paul Ryan went for the “rape/life of the mother” cop-out on the ‘right’ to an abortion.
    Sew the wind and reap the whirlwind Republican Party. I could not bring myself to vote for Romney and neither could I ever vote for Obama.

    • adele young

      Statistically, those who failed to exercise the right so many have suffered and fought to achieve, have collaborated with the greater of the two evils….and put the incumbant back in the White House to heap another four years of disaster on our country. More than likely it will be four years that will change this country beyond the point of return to a sane government without great suffering, perhaps even bloodshed. If such action was worth this, I ask Mark Shea and all the rest of those who may have taken his ill advice, where is your victory now? How has your path of *no vote is a good vote* leading this country forward today?

      • Liam

        Our victory is in Christ.

        • http://pavelspoetry.com Pavel Chichikov

          Yes it is. Forever. Amen.

      • Rose

        Who said “no vote is a good vote?” Some of us voted even though we couldn’t vote for Obama or Romney. The fact that we voted for someone else does not mean we didn’t vote. The two party system is terrible and that is one of the biggest problems with elections like these.

  • Proteios1

    I remember after the McCain,Palin defeat republicans went out to “ask” Americans what the arty should do. These quickly reverted to people being told X, Y and Z. I’d y the time is now to reinvent the conservative movement and get away from whoring out to big business and start looking at supporting people’s conservative values. I don’t actually think that will work because the closets of the race still makes me think there’s more of these blind GOP practices for many more years. Sad, because I think the closeness of a vote between a useless unqualified incumbent who has shown nothing good and trumped up turd…sorry Mitt, but you are no ore qualified than Obama. Beating Obama should have been easy. But you have to pick a solid opponent. We knew we lost as soon as we saw the final four.

  • Jen

    I must say that I am getting tired of my choices for president being the lesser of two evils. Maybe this will be a wake up call to the Republican Party. I hope so

    • jacobus

      Unlikely.

      Next we’re going to get Marco Rubio. Same terrible, plutocratic policies, but slightly darker skin!!

  • Realize this

    Civilizations rise and civilizations fall and fail, usually of their own volition. Cheap, free and easy is a powerful elixir when compared to work, thrift and sacrifice. We all know human nature well enough to know which we the people prefer.

    Ours is a civilization in decline. Doesn’t make it right, or good or less frightening but that’s the reality. End of the world? No. Crazy ‘doomsday prepper’ nonsense, no. But “Morning in America” today is not. Prepare accordingly.

    • j. blum

      Who exactly has it “cheap, free and easy?”

      • Ted Seeber

        Sandra Fluke’s boyfriend, obviously.

        • http://janalynmarie.blogspot.com Beadgirl

          Classy. That’s what this world needs — more insults and cheap shots.

          • David

            It’s not nice but it is on target. The contraception issue is pretty good arena in which the public demonstrates its preference for cheap, free, and easy — as if life and relationships were all about entertainment and pleasure. The entertainment and pleasure of the all-important Self, to be precise.

            • http://janalynmarie.blogspot.com Beadgirl

              I have yet to hear a sexually active man described as cheap, free, or easy. That’s the problem — name-calling women, which 1) won’t get them to change their minds and 2) seems to ignore the fact that men have pre-marital sex too.

              • Jmac

                Well said, Beadgirl. Just because our opposition to contraception isn’t motivated by misogyny doesn’t mean it won’t pop up from time to time anyway. Men have at least the same amount of culpability.

  • elcid

    obama won because once again at least 50% of Catholics voted him in again, not too mention the other so-called christians who worship at the throne of obama and the culture of death democratic party, while I have issues with the Republican party I vote my conscience which usually puts me in the republican side.
    I will just quote Pope Leo XIII…he says it all:

    “We have designedly made mention here of virtue and religion. For, it is the opinion of some, and the error is already very common, that the social question is merely an economic one, whereas in point of fact it is, above all, a moral and religious matter, and for that reason must be settled by the principles of morality and according to the dictates of religion. For, even though wages are doubled and the hours of labor are shortened and food is cheapened, yet, if the working man hearkens to the doctrines that are taught on this subject, as he is prone to do, and is prompted by the examples set before him to throw off respect for God and to enter upon a life of immorality, his labors and his gain will avail him naught.”

    • Dave Blake

      Finally, a comment that pares the whole thing down to its core. Thank you. I will not detract from this with personal observation.

  • rob

    Go, Mark, go! Amen! Alleluia!

  • JennE

    Thanks Mark,
    hit me hard. But yes, i voted for Mitt knowing what you put up but am aghast to think Obama was a better man. And yet, I woke up thankful Mitt didn’t win, for all the reasons you point out. We no longer live the lie Mitt would have brought to us. His losing is our gain if we know what we really are missing.
    But in the end, it should be the death of labels like “conservatism.” We need something new, something not afraid. I am ready to pull my card and go independent. I am also eager to move out of MD! Talk about a tough place to live faithfully. Catholics hoorah for Obama is a bit much.

  • Jacob Morgan

    You suffer from pride.

    How many fewer babies would have died if Romney had been elected? How about not funding abortions over seas?

    But, oh no, Shea has to be above it all. Has to special. Always managed to find an excuse to sneer from the side lines.

    Pride is a deadly sin.

    • Ted Seeber

      Romney would not have saved any babies. Babies are cost and Republicans are about cutting costs.

      • Bruce

        So what is the answer then, if the two big parties are out. Third parties? If you can get one candidate to win an election somewhere at some level, then maybe its doable.

        If not, then its just criticism and nothing more. And critics with nothing constructive to add are best ignored.

        • Ted Seeber

          I don’t know what the right answer is, but I know cooperating with intrinsic evil ain’t it. And since the electorate of the United States has jointly decided (with a 98% margin, that is) to continue to worship Hudge and Grudge instead of God, I’m beginning to wonder if the proper thing would be for us all to retreat into monasteries and kidnap/imprison any government agents that decide to come to call.

          But they’d probably nuke us for that too.

    • Mark Shea

      Of course I suffer from pride. Now, to return to my point, Republicans who wish to treat with reality need to stop making stupid ad hominem arguments and face that fact that they chose to nominate a moral void and then hector people into supporting him and the grave intrinsic evils he advocated. Refusal to support grave intrinsic evil is not pride. It is an act of obedience.

      • Sandy

        A “moral void”? You are calling Mitt Romney a “moral void”? How disgustingly abusive of you. It’s also false to say that he “advocated” abortion in the 1% of cases where rape or incest is an issue. I think you need to take the “moral inventory.”

        • Mark Shea

          Romney endorsed abortion “for the health of the mother” (i.e “always”). He also lied that he governed as a prolifer. He flip flopped and panders so many times on so many issues saying everything to everybody, that he was *legendary* even on the right as a complete weathervane. Yes. He is a moral void whose sole principle was “I want to be president”. Everything else was completely negotiable–except his fealty to the rich and powerful. Conservatives who want to treat with reality need to face that fact instead of telling people who could see, hear and read “Who are you gonna believe: me or your own two eyes?”

          • Andrew M.

            Mark, I completely agree with everything you have said about Romney and the Republicans/”conservatives”, but I disagree with the idea of abstaining from voting altogether. In fact, I find it irresponsible. Did Romney advocate intrinsic evil by allowing abortion in certain cases? Sure he did. Did he flip-flop on pretty much everything? Definitely. But, you can’t tell me that he wouldn’t have been more pro-life than his opponent. Nor that he would have continued to push laws that jeopardize our religious freedom. I’m sure you’re aware that the Church has said that when choosing between two evils, it is acceptable to try to minimize the evil. Those of us who are able to take action to reduce an evil being committed, I believe, have the responsibility to do so. I know that there has been an ongoing dialogue as to whether or not voting for Obama is a sin. I don’t know what the eventual consensus was on that, but I would say that if it is, then not voting at all is a sin of omission as well. Again, I’m by no means saying that you should “eat the crap sandwich”. I didn’t. I’m talking about trying to minimize evil.

            • Mark Shea

              I didn’t abstain from voting. I voted for Ron Paul.

              • tz

                I also wrote in Ron Paul. All I can say to your comments is “Amen!”. I’m glad you are putting the best construction on Romney calling him a “Moral Void”. The less charitable but more probable idea is that he is a pro-abort and for mandating the church pay for it as he was in MA, as well as gay marriage. (Personally I’m for the state not recognizing marriage, so Catholics would be free to require marriage contracts specifying “indissoluble” in the text and having it enforced. 50% divorce (ripping apart the “one flesh” not unlike abortion) in the light of maybe potentially 1% “gay” marriage (which cannot be one flesh) shows marriage is already redefined to Henry VIII’s model, and instead of making Catholic marriage legal, we are writing into the state constitutions a definition that Thomas More lost his head over.

              • Marthe Lépine

                Just a question from a foreigner: Is there a way to tally the “written-in” votes? It could give some very useful information. Maybe hundred of people wrote in Ron Paul, for example among military personnel, and it would be good to know.

          • Sandy

            A man who fathers five children and is faithful to his wife is not a “moral void” under any circumstances. His charitable giving – - on top of the money the government confiscated from his hard work via taxation – - is also legendary, and puts Biden, Obama, me and probably you to shame. What you are complaining about is his efforts to win in the real world. A subject of legitimate criticism, but to call him that is outrageous.

            • Peggy R

              A man’s personal life is not important, as the Dems told us re: Clinton. It is his policies that determine his morality. (I agree w/you Sand.) Mitt Romney may be many things, but an empty suit he is not.

              I am probably foolish to wade in on the other discussion and be called names, but obviously, given the party voting preferences among various races, whites are more varied in their views of public policy. Some favor more statism, some favor more liberty. But black and Latino voting habits seem to favor a strong state and dependence upon government. I do not mean to call folks lazy b/c of such a view. They really depend upon govt, in part b/c of the historical role the fed govt played in ending slavery and fighting racist state and local laws as the civil rights movement increased. It seems also that many blacks seem to subscribe to liberation theology in their Christianity. The self-sufficiency and family structure in black society were better before Johnson’s Great Society. Lower income white families have also been harmed by the Great Society. It is not just a race issue, but an income issue.

              So, what do conservatives/GOPers do when the ideas of limited government, property rights, equality before the law, and political, economic, and religious liberty don’t seem to appeal to half the population? It can’t be only minorities who oppose these ideas, either. Many whites rejected these ideals as well.

              I don’t have answers. But liberty, property rights, and equal justice should appeal to all people of any race. And nobody likes paying taxes. Surely every one could get behind the idea of government running on a shoestring just doing a few basic things for stability and infrastructure.

    • SC

      Your anger is not righteous and the root of your arrogance is pride itself. What did Jesus teach? The fundamentals of Christianity is not based in hatred and aggression and bigotry and arrogance such as yours. Why don’t you spend your energy feeding the poor, helping the infirm and the helpless in our society, taking care of our children that are most vulnerable and loving instead of spewing your ignorance and trying to elect divisive GOP hatemongers that hide their money in the Caymen Islands and are willing to dump all of the fiscal responsibility on the 99% of Americans while the top 1% can sit back and control the economy and burden people like you. The sad thing is that the middle class is disappearing – not because of Obama, but because the top 1% control 90%+ of the money in this country. You think they are going to give you jobs when it is in their best interest to outsource and pull in profits that they hide in offshore accounts? Wake up people!

      • Ted Seeber

        Who do you think is behind Obama? Guess what, it’s that same top 1%, who rejoice in the collectivist mentality that lets the stock market run the United States (Government is just a puppet).

      • Marthe Lépine

        I listen to the tone of your comment, and this sentence seems to apply to what you are yourself saying: “The fundamentals of Christianity is not based in hatred and aggression and bigotry and arrogance such as yours.” You would do well to go and do those things that you suggest get done by whoever you are replying to..

    • Jeremy Dobbs

      How many babies would Romney have saved? A few. That would have been equaled by his escalation of war in the Middle East. Po-tay-to, po-tah-to. Both are enemies of life.

      • Peggy R

        Where do we get this escalation of war idea? Romney’s hardly talked about foreign policy. I don;t recall one pro-war discussion. Wait til you see what Barry’s going to do. I subbed in high school today. All the kids fear WW3 and Iran. They really do. I was surprised by that.

        • Marthe Lépine

          Of course he did not talk about it; from what I can see, he did not talk about a lot of other important issues either. He just talked about what he assumed would get him elected. It seems clear from what I can read here in my northern observation post that the Republican party sounds as if it favors military intervention in Iran, which in my own ears sounds as an escalation of war.

    • Emma

      If memory serves me, Mark Shea lives in Washington, a state so blue they’d vote for Hitler if the Democratic Party nominated him. His vote did not count.

  • brandon

    Mark, You nailed it. first of all kudos on using the word crap four times in the article, there’s really no other way to put it. I think all those who are in mourning today ought to read Cardinal Dolans congratulatory letter to President Obama and take a hint from him. Who knows perhaps the administration would be crapping on the Church even more were it not for Cardinal Dolans civility with him. When you are civil to your enemies sometimes they will stab you in the back but I’d rather be persecuted for doing right than praised for doing wrong. Congratulations to the president and I hope that he does no further damage to the pro life cause or religious freedom, and I hope that “conservatives learn from the last couple elections. And don’t think that they can just throw some garbage candidate out and win in ’16 because I doubt that our current president will be as unpopular as our previous one was at the end of his second term.

    • Ted Seeber

      I read Cardinal Dolan’s congratulatory letter. I can’t imagine that it wasn’t round filed as soon as it was received. No way Obama is interested in the common good at all.

  • Dan Ambuul

    When I voted for Rick Santorem among the available candidates, I did the best I could. When I voted for M. Romney among the available candidates, I did the best I could. I am sure that “I” must DO good in my life. I think it was Chesterton who gave me a great example of courage when faced with a difficult choice. When the ice your standing on breaks away into the water, you can jump on the little pieces in an effort to get to safety but probably death. To stand, to take no action to make a situation better – is nothing. So if we never get a suitable candidate, do we never vote? Should I confess my vote knowing your position? This is not posed to be “cheeky” either. If I have done the best I can all along the way, (religiously, mind you, with my kids and wife and our prayers and volunteering at church and going to pro-life functions and supporting pro-life activities), do I stop at election time? It just seems like “nothing”.

    • Ted Seeber

      I am no longer sure that human beings are capable of good.

      • Mark Shea

        Ted: then you are guilty of the sin of despair and need to stop this nonsense.

  • Kelso

    Good for you, Mark. Right on the money. Nice to read the truth on this issue. Good point, too, AJ, who commented above about Florida and the demographics. This shunning of the Latinos, and harping on “illegal” immigration is partly why Pat Buchanan lost.

    • ivan_the_mad

      “harping on “illegal” immigration is partly why Pat Buchanan lost.” Right. I love Pat, but I wish he’d reconsider beating that drum.

      • ivan_the_mad

        Or playing that harp, for continuity with what I quoted from you.

  • http://gotayal.blogspot.com/ alex

    Mark,
    Thank you so much for that rant. I sometimes think that we lose our way and put our faith, without realizing it, in something that is fallible (i.e. government). Truth is truth. Good post. I have to repost. But seriously, thank you.

  • Jon

    I generally agree with this piece but I will say one thing regarding the Mother Jones link. Lost in all of the nutty conspiracy theories are some real elements of truth that we as Americans ought to be demanding answers for from our President. For instance, President Obama may not necessarily be in the pocket of the Muslim Brotherhood, but he sure has at the very least been overly permissive with its leadership. See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mybfyszKbGg Furthermore, the President clearly lied to the country and the world (via his UN speech) by suggesting attacks on the Benghazi consulate were motivated by an obscure internet video. This went on for weeks. Clearly, the President’s dealings with the Muslim world are not what they would appear on the surface. Unfortunately, this gets parlayed into nutty theories about Obama actually BEING a Muslim secretively and the real issues are lost in the process… Same thing applies to things like claiming Frank Marshall Davis is this guy’s real father. Did those people ever even see a picture of Barack Sr?!?! Again, crazy theory obscures the fact our current President was weaned on the milk of a Communist war criminal mentor. Should he be excluded from consideration as POTUS on that alone, or immediately labeled a Commie himself? Of course not, but the intellectual and moral formation of our leaders should be allowed as part of the national discussion and not be turned into an issue with one side making all sorts of wild claims and the other claiming racism the second you raise a question or concern.

    • Mark Shea

      Agreed about Benghazi. Part of the problem with the Right’s habit of glomming on to and promoting every idiotic epithet and conspiracy theory they can promote is illustrated in a story that conservatives should memorize: “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”. A sober right would have some traction on Benghazi. The current crazy Right just gets tuned out. Also, if the Right actually listened to ritually impure lefties when they point out that Obama is a war criminal who is deliberately targeting civilians, they would be smart. But because the right is dominated by people who think drones strikes are cool and awesome, they manage to actually support the President in one of the areas where a principled conservatism that was not drunk on militarism could really do some good by restraining his unjust warfare.

      • Peggy R

        Before the election, I provided in a combox here links to several NRO and other conservative articles objecting to O’s immoral and dumb foreign policy drone strikes.

  • http://decentfilms.com SDG

    ” The way to get that is for the Thing that Used to be Conservatism to become conservative again: to do what the 12 step groups call a “fearless moral inventory” and to stop lying to itself.”

    Heh. Well said. FWIW, I independently used the same metaphor to open my blog post “Decision 2012: Hitting Bottom? A Moment of Clarity.”

  • Bruce

    Can anyone answer me? Who is a viable candidate according to the folks here. I’m asking in all seriousness, for I think Mitt and Barak both suck.

    So who is the answer?

    • Faramir

      I don’t think anyone has a good answer for you. Personally, I expect things to get a lot worse before they get better. There’s really only one qualified candidate, but when asked if he was interested in the position, his answer was “My kingdom is not of this world.”

    • Chris M

      Changing things won’t happen except IN BETWEEN the election cycles. Once we get to the two pre-screened and party approved candidates, the rest of us have already lost.

  • Tom H

    “He was applying for a job from me and his qualifications, like Obama’s were unacceptable so I refused to hire them.” And if it had been possible for neither of them to get the job and to do another round of interviews, you’d have a point, Mark.

  • SC

    Thank you Mark for your comments and observations! Can you imagine people that profess Christianity living the faith instead of talking and talking and hating and spewing bigotry and hatred? One of the biggest reasons that I have not only seen but I have heard over and over again about why people are turning away from Christianity and Christian values is because of the behavior of the people that most loudly profess to be “Christians”. The Pharisees did the same thing and do people remember what Jesus told them? Wake up you people – Jesus does not endorse your hatred, bigotry, arrogance, and pride — yes pride! Your sense of indignation and anger is rooted in self-righteous pride!

  • http://thecatholicvoyager.blogspot.com Sam

    Mark – lot of good stuff here. However, with regard to the “this is who conservatives picked” mentality, I ponder this: During the primaries, it seemed the 4 main front-runners on the Republican side were Romney, Gingrich, Santorum, and Paul. I would submit that all 3 non-Romney candidates were more conservative than Romney. Romney wasn’t picked by most conservatives. He got a plurality because he was the only liberal choice. Frankly, I think the only solution to something like this (besides getting rid of the 2-party system) is to have more “rounds” of primaries. Like NCAA March Madness. Eventually a candidate would HAVE to get a majority of votes to move on. Romney moved on without capturing that majority.

    • Andy, Bad Person

      I think the simpler way is to have all of the states’ primaries on the same day. There would less gamesmanship and more campaigning on ideas.

      • Marthe Lépine

        And it would save a lot of money, and at the same time limit the influence of the providers of that money, since there would be only one opportunity to advertise for candidates at that level.

  • http://adifferentperspective1.blogspot.com/ Jack Quirk

    Excellent article, sir! Those so full of venom this morning reveal that they didn’t pray before the election, have no faith in Providence, or both. A link to this article is going upon my Facebook page, forthwith.

  • Dan C

    There is a strain in politically aware Evngelicalism that is nothing if not imminently awaiting for the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and proclaiming the Corruption of all Good at every set back.

    Power politics and its backlash brought conservativism to this point and dragged its co-opted religions with it. The Moral Majority/700 Club/Jerry Falwell days of the 1970′s and 1980′s are in decline, because of their excess. The children living under those days are uninterested in returning to that leadership. What went wrong?

    • Dan C

      And conservative Catholics have politically caucused so much with Evangelicals that they have been influenced to an excessive degree in their future outlook and their politics. Conservative Catholics are less Roman in their view of politics than their religious traditions would suggest.

      • ivan_the_mad

        Which explains the obsession with political Zionism while ignoring Christians suffering under Israeli policies and that there are no few Christians in Palestine.

    • Ted Seeber

      And I never believed them until yesterday, when I saw 50% of Catholics vote against Christ.

  • Don

    I wonder how Our Lady feels about the language Mark used in his article, and about his vitriolic attacks on Mitt Romney.

    • Mark Shea

      Our Lady is not a Calvinist who frets about words like crap. Indeed, coming from an agrarian culture, she worked around a lot of crap in her day. Being a good solid peasant, I expect she had a good appreciation for it, as do I. As to my critiques of Romney and his championing of wealth, power, militarism, lies, drone strikes on peasant women rather like Our Lady, and abortion, I recall her saying “He has cast down the mighty in their arrogance”. So I don’t think she’s too broken up about him losing. I do think she grieves that Obama won though, since he champions the same stuff. Any further Church Lady hand-wringing to divert the conversation to insubstantial fluff?

    • Ted Seeber

      Distingo! The Bible defines swearing as taking the name of the Lord Your God in Vain. Crap ain’t my God, and I’m very sorry for you if crap is your god.

      Apologies to Anthony Boucher (The above is a corruption of a line in a science fiction short story that I think every geeky Catholic should be familiar with _The Quest for Saint Aquin_

    • Dan C

      Our Lady weeps over the neglect we have shown our neighbor Haiti and the oppressive poverty crushing that nation.

      Our Lady weeps over the neglect of the deserved and undeserved poor in our country.

      Our Lady weeps over the dead babies and damaged women caused by abortion in our country.

      Our Lady weeps over the dead children that result from goateed gamers working for the Department of Defense as they pilot drones around the planet, killing direectly on our behalf, on the command of our elected government, to the cheers of much of the nation.

      I am not sure the utterance of “crap” makes the priorities.

  • http://fernandapowers.com Fernanda

    Thanks for the mention!

    –Another blogger with some miniscule readership :-)

  • Max

    With what demographics did Romney lose handily in?

    Latinos, women, and young people.

    What is the biggest group in the GOP that is attracting Latinos, women, and young people? The Ron Paul movement. This really isn’t that confusing.

  • bob

    One of the best of the post-election analyses, thank you Mark. The GOP must must must get its head out of its butt and stop consoling itself with its invented-reality cocoon. The almost unanimous insistence, in defiance of DOZENS of polls saying the opposite, that Romney would not just win but win a landslide is a perfect example of the degree to which the so-called “conservative movement” has allowed itself to be sold down the river by a bunch charlatans. Because they seem to live completely in a completely buttoned-up media silo where they told only what they want to hear, they have put themselves at a huge information disadvantage.

  • JC

    Mark:
    You say: “I did not help elect Obama since I did not vote for him.”
    Question: If you didn’t vote for Obama and you didn’t vote for Romney who opposed him, how do you maintain that your non-voting did not help elect Obama?
    Am I missing something here…?

    • Mark Shea

      Because voting for somebody else is not voting for Obama. Conservatives who wish to treat with reality instead of blame fifth columnists and traitors should ask themselves “Why did we nominate somebody that a principled conservative could not support (as well as the majority of the American people)?”

      • JC

        Mark,
        Thank you for clearing that up for me. I apologize for missing the earlier combox where you mentioned voting for Ron Paul.

  • Margarita Szechenyi

    Thanks for the great article, again, Mark! :) I’d only disagree with ya on a few things: 1) The GOP was mercifully blessed with a candidate it did not deserve who was the only candidate who could have beat Obama: Ron Paul. But it punched him in the stomach at every turn, and shoved him out of the nomination with lying, cheating & even physical attacks on his delegates. The GOP, the media and Catholic/Protestant/Pro-Life/Conservative bloggers not as honest or brave as you blackballed him and lied about what he stood for on every point at every turn. 2) Not all conspiracy theories are bunk. The term, “conspiracy theory” was coined so as to make anyone like you who points out the truth about corruption in our trusted entities appear to be a nutcase. Conspiracies were behind Marxism, Nazism, Fascism, the Mafia….and let’s give honor to the nuttiest conspiracy theorist of all if we’re going to consider all such whistleblowers as nuts: Pope Leo XIII with his encyclicals on Freemasonry. 3) Our best bet is in getting away from the party system alltogether or at least making the environment much more friendly to other parties, so we’re not divided & conquered by the suffocating limitations & Hehelian-Dialectic-made-easy environment of a two party monopoly.

    • http://www.architecture-as-space.info/ kej0

      Completely agree with Margitka. 1. Ron Paul was the only candidate who was trying to help the Country, and not himself. 2. As long as Satan is in this world there will be conspiracies. By conspiracy I mean ‘a working secretly together for a selfish goal or to cause harm to others.’ 3. No system of governing is perfect. The one we got more than 200 years ago should be cleaned of from the euphemisms attached to it especially during the last one hundred years. I think that is what Ron Paul advocated. The bureaucracy fears only one thing, the truth.

  • Mack

    Easy, Mark; you’ll blow an artery.

  • Jack Swan

    One odd thing that keeps coming back in the conservative pundocracy (and in these comments) is that the GOP would have won if only it had been more conservative. But there is no evidence that current “conservative” positions are supported by a majority of the electorate. In fact exit polls show the opposite — only 35% of the people call themselves “conservative”, only 36% are pro-life, only 21% support the Tea Party movement, only 25% want to repeal the Affordable Care Act in its entirety, 35% oppose any tax increases. 28% want to deport all illegal immigrants. You get the picture. The idea of elections is to get to 50% plus one. The reality is that what passes for conservatism in this day and age is not popular (and it’s not conservatism either, but that’s another argument). When your formula isn’t working, it’s time to change it.

  • http://abbey-roads.blogspot.com/ terry nelson

    This post is another reason why I like you and respect you so much. God bless you Mark.

  • http://www.azoic.com/ Irenaeus of New York

    Obama won because the GOP does not know how to elevate candidates with strong and consistent principles. I watched every debate in the primary and it was obvious that Romney was not what the base wanted, but rather what they settled for. Or more accurately, what was shoved down their throats. They haven’t learned their lesson because they are all ready to coronate the next generation of Repubs based on the same superficial qualities of the last batch. For instance, they love Rubio not for his substance, but rather the possibility his ethnicity will make a play with hispanics. Thats just another losing formula for a party that markets candidates like hollywood markets actors.

    • Marthe Lépine

      “a party that markets candidates like hollywood markets actors” That reminds me of something I read long ago in a book by Milton Friedman. Somewhere towards the end, he suggested that in fact the economy was too important to leave to politicians, and it would be preferable to have an actor as president, who would let the businesspeople do their thing without interference. I have lent the book to a friend who does not seem to be able to find it right now, but I could send a reference later.

    • Dan C

      I think you are confused. The conversation on conservativism happened. Movement conservativism lost due to fiscal fears. The minute Ryan was nominated, Pennsylvania became “blue.” Ohio was “blue” for the same reason, as was Wisconsin.

      Strong principles were enunciated by Romney throughout the primaries. He enunciated true blue Republican principles. He spoke with sincerity about the “47% moochocracy.” It was heartfelt. It was a line one could find on the pages of the National Review, the WSJ, and First Things (which has had some back-pedaling on such matters recently).

      He lost on those principles.

      The consequence for anti-abortion folks: do you continue to hitch the anti-abortion cause to movement conservativism? Or do you seek to broaden support, and perhaps surrender some of your “negotiables” for “non-negotiables,” as has been insisted liberals had to do for the past 3 Presidential Elections?

  • tz

    The only disagreement:

    The Thing That Used to be Conservatism lost because “conservatives”, of their own free will, chose to nominate Willard Mitt Romney.

    I stopped when a different and truly conservative Romney lost here.

    Going back to Ronna Romney in MI, I worked hard, but the GOP “Machine” went out and told everyone it was OK to reelect the democrat if they didn’t like Ronna, they should vote for the democrat. Yes, the GOP doesn’t really want conservatives.

    It was less “conservatives” of their own free will, rather than the plutocrat party bosses shoving their anointed candidate down the throats. Look at the mischief with the delegates and rule changes to insure the convention would be better termed a coronation.

    You have a point when an army of shills came out to tell us Mitt was it (Sekulo), or to stick with Rick (Catholic Vote). Apparently Gingrich was too much for even them to stomach. On Illegal immigration (I refuse to use the wrong word “undocumented”, Ron Paul was in alignment with the church, if there really are two current issues – the HHS mandate AND serving anyone without asking “papers please”. But the Bishops were silent, busy, whatever. So was Catholic media when it wasn’t fawning over one of the corrupt plutocrats.

    And ultimately it is about Power. Power corrupts. Ron Paul is one of the few who want to slay the Leviathan government. The rest say they can tame it and ride it and will use its evil for good. A small and remote government can only do small and remote evils, but everyone calls for a micromanaging, invasive, busybody, then is surprised when it doesn’t restrict itself to “they”, whomever “they” is. But as the Pogo comic showed, “We have met the enemy and they is us”.

    I would concede no authority or power to someone in government that I could not be assured would not be exercised to harm me if that person was possessed by seven devils. That tends toward smaller government, or more local where exorcists or holy water or blessed salt can reach.

  • Brian of Bedrock

    We can’t make claims that if we are more Christ like, we will win elections. If we are more Christ like we will be treated like Christ was treated. We are in a world, hostile to Christianity, so don’t be fooled into thinking life will be better and the nation will embrace us more, the more Christian we become. The fact is, life will most likely get harder and more difficult, not easier. Jesus promised us that we will be treated like he was treated, not better.
    Mark is critical of Mitt and the Republicans for not being Christian enough and that’s why they lost. I’m sorry, I flatly disagree. I agree they should be more Christian, but the truth is, the more Christian they become, the less likely it is they would be elected… unless the Church can change the hearts and minds of the people. But for now, the people are on a quest to be more and more immoral defining irresponsible lifestyles as liberty and freedom. That will continue to happen until the nation hits bottom. Israel gives us plenty of examples of what happens when a nation abandons God. Not until it finds itself enslaved to other nations and to destructive lifestyles does it look up.

    • Sandy

      Now that is a brilliant comment. You should start a blog. It would elevate the discourse.

    • Mark Shea

      I’m not claiming that if we are more Christlike we will win elections. Next red herring?

      I’m urging conservatives to be wise and not foolish, prudent and not imprudent, just and not unjust. Listening the tradition would be smart and wise, but mostly I’m arguing for the cardinal virtues instead of living in illusion, which is imprudent and stupid.

  • http://www.leepenn.org Lee Penn

    Mark, your critique of present-day Republican conservatism is on target. You have spoken for truth in a dark time. Times will get darker. Carry on!

    The Preesidential choice we just faced was between two empty suits. Given a choice between a fake-progressive empty suit and a real plutocrat empty suit, the majority voted for the fake-progressive.

    Conservatism as I remember it in the 1960s and 1970s was (generally) sober, realistic, and fiscally responsible. Fanaticism was not the norm then. Now, when I visit conservative activist forums and read the stuff I get from activist mailing lists, it seems that sobriety is gone, and fanaticism has repolaced it.

    My next comment may draw fire, but so be it. Among non-conservatives, there is this cynical summary of conservative values: that conservatives are pro-life till the baby is born, and after that, it’s open season/every one for himself. Look again at the public stance of the Republican Right: they claim to oppose abortion and to support human life. And then … they are for the death penalty, war in Iraq/Afghanistan/Iran, torture (excuse me, “enhanced interrogation”), drone strikes, the Presidential kill list, Homeland Security and the TSA, getting rid of millions of illegal aliens in one way or another, cutting social services, opposing universal health coverage, jailiing drug users in the hundreds of thousands or millions, and leaving corporations free to do whatever maximizes profit, no matter what the social cost. No wonder millions of voters look at this and turn away.

    Right-wing Jacobinism is not the same thing as the defense of the permanent things. Defense of corporate anarchy is not the same thing as defense of individual freedom. Killing the “bad guys” in sufficient numbers is not the same thing as defense of human life.

    Lee

    • Mark Shea

      Spot on.

  • I M Forman

    How high and above it all we are. Can’t sully your hands to vote against Obama to try to protect our church from the HHS mandate. Your aloofness doesn’t excuse you from protecting your church. Not voting against Obama says alot more about you than it does about Mitt Romney. You have sat out this one when your church needed you. Only one of two people were going to win the election and you knew that. Your excuses are lame. Talk is cheap. At least I voted for someone that would have worked for protecting religious liberty – you advocated that responsibility , especially if you voted for a third party candidate that had no shot of victory. Not exactly the Church Militant, aren’t we?

    • Peggy R

      Here, here!

      I don’t have more to say but filter just loves wordiness…truthiness in action…

  • Mark R

    Right on Mark! What really needs to be done is to diminish the power and importance of Fox and talk radio.

  • Eddie

    Mr. Shea,

    I return again to comment, only this time thankfully it is not about the Holy Mother’s perpetual virginity. This is a very good article that hits the nail right on the head. To me, it is beyond sickening to see how many Catholic and Evangelical conservatives have embraced social Darwinism and survival of the fittest. I agree with you that comment’s like Adele’s are nothing more than a smoke-screen for racism. What is doubly interesting is that most of the “undeserving recipients” of state help live in Southern states that are statistically the poorest in the nation. The white conservatives in those southern states mistakenly believe that they are the ones paying the Federal taxes to support those people, when in fact, it is the liberal and by-far richer states of the North and West Coast that bear the overwhelming burden of those taxes….and they are the ones who to a fault vote Democrat. These neo-Dixiecrats left the Democratic Party following the passage of the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act of 1964 and 1965 and today form the core base of the GOP…..more terrifying is the fact that the “intellectual” leadership of this progressively homogenous group are what I would classify as being ultra-montanist Catholics who would love nothing more than to have a modernist witch-hunt with oaths like that proscribed by Pius X. Antonin Scalia best represents this reactionary decay that seeks nothing less than to overturn the Enlightenment and reimpose religious litmas, while simultaneously enthroning Ayn Rand. It is a retreat into barbarism in the name of perverted Thomism. A sham and a lie, perhaps a new “synthesis of all heresies” even worse than a secular humanism tempered by a Federalism created by Judeo-Christian led men, for not only is it completely compassionless, not only does it want war without end, not only does it falsify history to further it’s own ends, but it is completely and totally devoid of hope and Christ Jesus’ love, the true agape. I personally believe that God’s staying hand was in this election, because had it gone the other way, what would have emerged would have been unthinkable.

    • rachel

      Well said Eddie!! I think this may be a blessing in disguise

  • Jacob S

    Yeah, GoP lost this one by being stupid, and the party has been stupid in the ideals it supports and the way in which it supports them as well as in which candidates it chooses. I love how one writer explained it: we finally know what happens when a candidate who cannot beat anyone faces up against a candidate who can be beaten by anyone – voters go for the status quo. Sort of like an impotent force against an incredibly movable object.

    But while this Obama win was certainly the GoP’s fault and third party voters had nothing to do with it, and your blog had even less to do with it, I still think your voting strategy is silly completely independently of its lack of actual effects on results. I could elaborate I suppose, but at this point might as well hold off till the next time the GoP makes a bad choice that still manages to be a little less bad than the Democrat. It just wouldn’t be the internet if anyone appeared to change their mind though, so I figured I was obligated by laws deeper than anything this election might effect to still say I think you’re at least partially wrong.

  • Balin

    I’m confused. If Satan were to appear to any one of us and offer us the choice of two evils, one not quite so evil as the other, are we obliged to entertain such an offer? Must we choose? Or may we -must we?- walk away leaving both offers on the table? Considering that to choose the lesser of two evils is still a victory for evil, is God okay with us choosing the lesser of evils when options to choose varying degrees of good exist however unpopular they may be? Would God okay such a choice? Would God actually use the word okay? I’m confused.

    • Jacob S

      Yes He would, if you correct the analogy. Because in your analogy, you can walk away from the table and no evil will happen, whereas in an election one of the two evils will happen at all, and your miniscule effect, such that it is, may be a piece of fly dirt on the scales helping to tip them to a slightly less evil position – whereas if you don’t pick one, then you aren’t even contributing your fly dirt’s worth of influence to avoiding the worst evil. That said, your contribution in voting will have no real effect in any actual national election (and probably not even in a local election), so this argument has to become a little more based on principle to have any weight, and it can be, but I don’t think we want to go into that again. But I will leave you with a quote from then Cardinal Ratzinger:

      “A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate’s permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favor of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons.”

      So you may (validly) choose not to vote for the lesser of two evils if you think that the best approach, but please don’t pull any of that “if you voted for Romney you’re really a secret supporter of torture who wants the devil to rule the world” cr-stuff. That makes exactly zero sense and is exactly along the same lines as saying “if you voted third party, you must secretly love Obama, abortion, gay marriage, and the abolition of religious freedom.

      • Balin

        I’m still confused. Even if presented with the choices to do varying degrees of good I am still to choose a lesser evil? I am only to choose good when a majority or substantial minority also chooses good? God wants me to wait to see how everybody else around me chooses before choosing and then choose an evil if they do? Choosing a good is not as pleasing to God as choosing a lesser evil if it’s not a popular choice? God only wants me to choose good when it’s popular? This voting is harder than it looks.

        • Jacob S

          Please don’t use stupid strawman arguments. You know very well that when you vote for a third party candidate that won’t win, you aren’t choosing actual good. It won’t happen, you know this. You may be approving good, if that is how you think of your vote, but you aren’t actually causing it to happen because it won’t happen and you know this. If you think it is more important to approve of good that won’t happen then to try, however ineffectually, to avoid evil that will, then you have your voting strategy, and I won’t tell you you morally can’t use it (though I will tell you you’re being silly). I refuse to believe you are so dense as to not be able to tell the difference between actually choosing a less terrible disaster as how you want things to be, and trying to avoid a terrible disaster in the only way that is actually possible, which just happens to be a slightly less terrible disaster. It’s not about popular. It’s about POSSIBLE. But in case you are struggling with it still, an analogy:

          If you are the pilot of a plane flying over the populated outskirts of New York City, and discover that somehow there is a timed nuclear bomb aboard, which will go off soon and which you are incapable of disabling, then you have a choice – continue to fly into NYC so that the nuke will go off and kill many, many people, or try to fly the plane into the least populated area that you can so that the bomb will kill many, but fewer, people.

          In neither case are you responsible for the evil. You are just doing the best that you can. Now, this is not a perfect analogy, but in this analogy voting third party would be like refusing to do anything at all and letting your co-pilot determine which action to take, while perhaps just kind of hoping that the he chooses the less evil action.

          Note that the situation in this analogy is a bit strong. It would need to be moderated a bit to fit the reality of voting, but it simply sketches an argument. It is not required that you think of the voter as the pilot because the situation is too strong. But it is possible to – it is close enough to reality that your strawman argument directly translates into saying that it would be evil for the pilot to try to steer his nuke into a less populated area.

          • Balin

            I’m only one person trying his best to use his power of the ballot for good instead of evil. Using my one vote for a lesser evil than any kind of good just doesn’t seem to be a good use of my vote. I never knew how much better a lesser evil is than any sort of good. Good is not as good as a lesser evil is. So, if I use my vote to choose good I choose evil and if I use my vote to choose the lesser evil I choose good? That doesn’t sound good. And I have never thought of our electoral process quite like your analogy. Just to be clear, is my vote the nuclear bomb or the plane carrying it? Am I piloting my vote or carrying my vote? If voting is this dangerous maybe we shouldn’t do it.

            • Jacob S

              Again, I am not trying, at the moment, to say that voting third party is bad as such, only to show that there are ways of thinking about voting that leads one to vote lesser of two evils. Again, a single vote won’t change anything, so how you should vote will come down to a principle.

              In the analogy the vote is an attempt to steer the plane. The situation in the analogy is too strong because no single vote will change anything, and was primarily there to be an exaggerated version of a principle that I follow that tends to lead to lesser of two evils voting: “Given that just under half of the voters will vote for each major candidate no matter what anyone does and hence that one of them will be president, vote how you would like everyone who is not fixed into one of those blocks to vote.”

              Again, it’s a principle, it can be defended (mostly using the tragedy of the commons type reasoning), and it does not amount to endorsing the candidate you vote for etc etc.

              But there is another principle that is much simpler that is “vote for who you actually want to be in office.” I can’t say as a principle that that’s an evil one, all I can say is that it’s not the only one and that it’s not correct to assume that anyone who votes is using it.

              Again my main point is not that voting third party is evil (despite the fact that I will almost never do it – if I were somehow to decide that were the way to go, I’d probably just stay home) only that neither is voting lesser of two evils.

          • Mark Shea

            Jacob:

            Yours and many other tired canards are addressed here: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/markshea/2012/10/its-the-big-election-super-fun-pak.html Pay particular attention to 6 through 9b.

            • Jacob S

              Hi Mark,

              I read that piece and agreed with most of it, with a few exceptions about principles that I think you ignored, but please note that I am not really arguing against voting third party here (although my preference for sucks-less voting almost certainly will show through), only giving a rough outline of why other paths are permissible as well. As I’ve explained, the situation in that analogy is much too strong to apply to voting in general. I am also aware that neither it (nor anything that I am aware of) prohibits third party voting in either general terms .

              In fact, the only reason why I brought it up at all is because the person I was arguing with was failing to distinguish between choosing the evil of the candidate who sucks less as an absolute unqualified choosing of that evil, and choosing the evil of that candidate who sucks less given that there are only two choices that can actually occur, and that one of them will occur.

              I don’t consider my vote to be an endorsement of the views the candidates hold. Because I don’t, and because there’s no practical reason (because it won’t change anything) and no philosophical reason (or at least none that will work, because my vote being an action purely from within my mind that hence actually means whatever I think it does – even if my mind is messed up) why I should consider my vote an actual endorsement of the evil of the sucks-less candidate supports, it actually is not such an endorsement. Because it neither endorses nor causes (even in the highly exaggerated case where we pretend that my vote actually chooses the president from the two possible candidates) the evil to occur, it is not evil.

              In exactly the same way that your vote was not evil (even if I will continue to think it was silly) because it neither endorses nor directly causes whatever train wreck of a president the population as a whole, who didn’t vote third party, decide it would be less bad to inflict upon our country.

  • Lynne Viverito

    Dear Mark,
    You are irritating and you know many more details about history and political parties than I do and that is irritating, too. To me you seem like a Know It All and I don’t like that much either. So, you really seem like one of my younger brothers and I do care about every one of them, even though they are also irritating Know It Alls.
    I did vote for Mitt Romney and today was a disappointing day. It was so disappointing that I also downloaded a voter’s registration form and changed my party affiliation from Republican to No Party Affiliation. I knew I was going to do this a month or so ago, but didn’t want to do it before the election as I might make voting difficult. But I knew then that neither of the major parties can be believed anymore. Four years ago I voted for McCain, it actually made me ill to vote for him and this year wasn’t any better. So it is time to leave the Party that keeps offering candidates so unacceptable. Sometimes learning is hard. But I’m at the point where I know enough of the details, I can’t pretend that I don’t. So neither of these major parties can count me anymore, and if that is the only message they will listen to, that is the message I am sending.

    • Mark Shea

      Straightforwardly spoken. I salute you.

  • Matthew J. Ogden

    Mark, you are spot on about this. First, pro-lifers and conservatives in general (actual conservatives, not neo-cons) need desperately to realize how disenfranchised they are in the current establishment. If the Republican Party actually cared about abortion, religious freedom, gay “marriage,” contraception, and so on, they would never have nominated this guy. Second, this country would still be sunk even if the Republicans did harness the power of American conservatism. As another blogger said, it is our manifest destiny now to hit rock bottom: and the sooner, the better. The sooner this country collapses, we can rebuild. Don’t fight it. As vehemently opposed as I am to abortion, homosexuality, contraception, and secular oppression, we are fighting a losing battle. But so much the better: these people are dooming themselves to extinction. Please, let them die out. And good riddance. We will be fine. We’ve been treated much worse by much more respectable people. Holy Mother Church is forever. The United States is just a passing phase, like so many ruined civilizations.

  • Chris

    “Dems believe we belong to the State.”

    I disagree. A more accurate description of progressivism is that the State belongs to us, as members of a participatory democracy, and that we have a stewardship responsibility to make informed decisions about policy.

  • Pete Mc Nesbit

    I think Robert Johnson, should have been allowed at the first round of Republican debates. As a former Gov. of New Mexico he had already worked conservatively within a state, refilled the state coffers and had some really great ideas. Of course he wasn’t as fancy as Mitt and not so ready to sellout his ideals for the sound bite conservative press. No, Karl Rove anointed Mitt the man who started Obamacare in Mass. and then denounced it and kept on spinning where ever the wind blew him.

  • Pete Mc Nesbit

    One other thing, the concept of not liking or not working with who was elected, and therefore we will filibuster for 2 years is so childish I’m tempted to spank any politician who pulls that crap. Grow up, the last 2 years, have been the worst years legislatively ever seen in Washington D.C. . You have been elected, I do not care about anything you signed for Grover Norquist. You take an OATH to the UNITED STATES of AMERICAN and the CONSTITUTION. Whatever you signed to an unelected shill or alec and the chamber of commerce are immaterial. They are not the Constitution. And even if they like to pump money into politics they do not represent REAL LIVING BREATHING/and yes DYING CITIZENS, no matter what the Supreme Court calls corporations.
    The chamber of commerce, sucks in more money from overseas than from members in the US. And yet thinks it knows what is best for the US, what it knows best is how to fill its pockets. Ask the chamber someday how many companies it represents , that consist of mom and pop stores with 10 or less employees. Not many, the fees involved are too high, but they will tell you they represent all. And if you don’t join you aren’t considered a business by them. I find it hilarious that they run the Golden Apple awards for Education, when they are anti-labor union.

  • Ulrich

    A party based on Christian principles I think would be attractive; socially conservative with a good amount of Social Justice. Both Blacks and Hispanics tend toward the social conservatism but since they also tend to be poor mistrust the Wall Street controlled Republican Party. The 3rd parties right now don’t have this mix; they tend to be extreme reflections of either the Reps or Dems.
    Catholic Social Teachings tell us that it has often been the loss of vested rights, the perception of a ‘moral economy’, the traditional, pre-capitalist appreciation of humane relationships which has given birth to anti-capitalist movements. In this light, to call for a commonweal of family, devotion, mutuality, and locality is a truly conservative agenda.


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