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November 07, 2008

Dick Armey on Squishy Conservatism

Repeating several points made by Ace the other day, Armey says we're beat up, but we're not wrong. We lose when we don't embrace what we believe.

The liberal pundits who embraced the candidacy of Barack Obama are also eager to issue a death certificate for free market capitalism. They're wrong, and they remind me of what the great Willie Nelson once said: "I'm ragged but I'm right."

To be sure, the American people have handed power over to the Democrats. But today there is a categorical difference between what Republicans stand for and the principles of individual freedom. Parties are all about getting people elected to political office; and the practice of politics too often takes the form of professional juvenile delinquency: short-sighted and self-centered.

Too long, too many of us have complained that our party has cozied up to the wrong side of the argument just to win. That's how it felt to me. We wanted to win more than we wanted to lead. Time after time McCain pushed the wrong buttons on his base and went after the elusive "middle". We got smacked for it in 06, and we got smacked again on Tuesday.

I'll repeat what others have said, Reagan didn't win the Reagan Democrats by blessing the values of FDR, the 'kinda ok' parts of the Soviet Union, the supremacy of government intervention and the nice intentions of the Great Society. He won them by pushing his values, ones the Reagan Dems shared with his base.

Some argue you have to win to lead. Not me. I argue you can't win if you won't lead. Say what you will about the stacked deck and nonsensical nothingness that was an Obama campaign, he led those morons and they loved him for it.

A key opportunity was squandered in the financial crisis, Armey calls J-Mac's reaction "visceral and insecure", choosing to 'suspend' his campaign and promising to bring an end to Wall Street greed.

Dude. Dude. You were handed this mess on a silver platter, with the sound bites, video clips and personal history of having taken two full shots at intervening in the shit within the past 4 years, and this was your play?

Visceral indeed. John and his gut reactions. Fuck.

Will the Democrats overreach? Does the Pope live in the woods? Of course they will. It's their nature.

Former Congressman Dick Gephardt has warned President-elect Obama and the new Democratic majorities to be humble and measured. But with a legislative agenda driven by Nancy Pelosi, George Miller and Mr. Rangel, the temptations may be too great.

Humble and measured? That's a politician (who knows something about winning and losing power) trying to set the future stage to hold onto that power. They'll ignore him. They've been burning for this for eight years. They're gonna go crazy. Craaaaaaaazy.

Armey's right. The problem isn't the followers. The followers are right. We're just looking for the leader.

UPDATED: It's old. But it's instructive. They're motivated, to the point of threatening children.

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posted by Dave In Texas at 09:44 AM

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