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June 24, 2015

The Case for Mike Flynn, Republican Candidate for the Illinois' 18th District

"In politics today, sadly, we don't debate issues as much as the theater around those issues." -- Mike Flynn, June 6, 2015, laying out his case in opposition to the TPA

"[T]rust that a Mike Flynn win is not a local win -- it's a national blow against Boehner approaching the importance of the Brat victory. -- PJ Media's David Steinberg detailing the dirty tricks campaign being run against Mike Flynn by supporters of Establishment fave-rave Darin LaHood

I have previously endorsed Mike Flynn. But that's easy. Let me explain my case for him.

I previously remarked that Flynn might be a genius. I didn't mean this as an empty boast or bit of trivia. What I intended by that -- but did not say -- is that we in America are currently in the most desperate war of ideas we've faced since the 1930s, and we on the conservative side simply do not have enough political representatives capable of engaging in this fight.

There is a slur the Political Class likes to use against Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, and, I suppose, even low-level pundits like me: The "Entertainment Wing" of the party. See, the Political Class is the Serious Wing, but we thinkers, writers, and talkers are merely the "Entertainment Wing."

This is precisely backwards. I disagree with Rush Limbaugh from time to time, but I do not doubt that he actually believes in the ideas he transmits to his listeners.

I heard about the Corker Iran sell-out from two members of the "Entertainment Wing" -- Mark Levin and Andrew C. McCarthy. Both of them told me the Corker bill actually pre-approved Obama's Iran deal, and made it nearly impossible to block later.

This turns out to have been true. If anyone from the non-"Entertainment Wing" has a credible argument against this, I have not heard it-- and I've been looking.

So the "Entertainment Wing" told me the truth about the Corker bill, and the Political Class -- the Serious Wing, I guess -- gave me a silly sales pitch.

So, we have a so-called "Entertainment Wing" that actually believes in the ideas it is transmitting, and an allegedly Serious Wing, aka the Political Class, which does not believe in these ideas, but instead cynically deploys them as Sitcom Catch-Phrases every Ratings Sweeps Period (better known as the US federal elections).

So you tell me: Who is the Entertainment Wing, again?

Who seeks to distract us, and who seeks to speak to us about important issues?

Who treats ideas as if they matter, and who treats ideas as if they are merely Commercial Jingles employed in pitches for a product you don't want?

Most politicians are not particularly fluent in ideas. You will frequently hear politicians speaking conservatism as if it is a second language -- if it is that at all. Indeed, politicians frequently only know the language of conservatism the way that business travelers do -- learning some French a couple of weeks before a sales meeting in Paris.

Little wonder that they stick so closely to stock phrases.

Many conservatives are chagrined that few of our leaders are making the case for conservatism. What they seem to do, most of the time, is run away from arguments, or try to soft-pedal them and pretend they're not arguments at all.

They do so because they simply do not have the intellectual musculature to actually fight on the these ideas. If pushed, even a little bit, they will crumble to the ground.

So they hide. And they issue well-scrubbed press releases that don't say much at all.

Mike Flynn has something all of you do. Something all writers have, something all readers have. Something all students of history and politics have: An actual abiding interest in ideas.

I don't know if we need an ideologue for a Congressman -- the word sounds so negative, and anyone called an "ideologue" is a guy people aren't going to elect -- but I'll tell you what we do need: An ideovore, an ideophile. Someone who eats ideas, someone who loves ideas.

If you're sending a man to be your emissary in Kabul, you're going to want him to be fluent in Pashtun. And if you're sending someone to represent you in a far darker and more savage court -- the one in Washington DC -- you're going to want a man who's fluent in ideas.

Ideas move men. Not campaign war chests and not three-millimeters-deep bumper stickers. But Ideas.

Mike was speaking at an event. Mike supports the idea of starting an Article V convention. But one woman -- clearly invested in the issue -- did not. She feared that the left would hijack any such convention, and what we would be left with was a country even more leftwing, with even fewer rights of the individual, than we have now.

Did Mike run away from this? Did he crumple to the ground? Did he, as so many politicians do, simply sneer at her concerns, because he had no better response at hand?

No. He said to her that while he understood that concern, it has to be kept in mind that three quarters of the states need to ratify an Article V constitution, and while it is possible the left could hijack the convention itself, it seems impossible to imagine they could command majorities in two thirds of the states, as they only control about one third of them now.

At the end of this town hall, the woman told him that she wasn't quite convinced he was right about the unlikelihood of that happening, but that she wanted to volunteer to support him.

You don't have to sneer someone down if you actually have enough information and logic to have a polite and informative discussion with them.

Sneering is what people do when they must say something in response but don't know enough to offer up facts and logic.

This is why I think Mike Flynn could be a game-changer in the Congress. He gets it. If you think I'm smart-- well, he's smarter. And he knows a lot more than I do.

A few months ago I was talking to Mike Flynn, and we talked about the books we were reading. I mentioned I was reading Dracula, which I never read before, assuming it to be bad. (It's good!)

Mike said he was re-reading Will and Ariel Durant's 11-volume Story of Civilization. He said he was up to volume four, I think, and later mentioned he'd stopped reading at volume six (the Renaissance).

Men do not have to sneer at each other if they are sufficiently confident of their ability to discuss ideas.

One time I was talking about Mike about the Second Amendment. The discussion involved the fact that the Second Amendment seems, pretty clearly, to be about, at the end of the day, an armed citizenry's ability to resist an oppressive government, should that dark day arrive. I mentioned that the left keeps insisting that the Second Amendment is all about huntin' some ducks.

Mike said: "The Framers of the Constitution did not write the Second Amendment to protect against a Tyranny of Geese."

And then he chuckled that dry laugh of his.

We need some people in Congress -- not just out on the radio, not just writing books but in the actual well of Congress -- explaining to people that the Second Amendment is not about the Framer's fear of the Tyranny of Geese. We need someone who gets that, and someone fluent enough with ideas to actually articulate that in an appealing and interesting way.

Mike has declared his intention to "upend CSPAN's business model" -- that is, he intends to be thought leader and public communicator, actually practicing democracy as it was meant to be practiced, as an actual dialogue between the representative and represented.

Not a rigged game where some know-nothing hacks balance one group's support with another group's donation and then come out to announce the decision they've made without your input.

Democracy. Debate. Dissent. The Consent of the Governed. Either we insist the Political Class take these ideas seriously again, or we just pack up the whole thing.

We swim in waters made for us -- befouled for us -- by progressive fish. They create the waste-tainted waters we swim in. And these waters we swim in are heavily biased to the left -- the left's talking points are always the Safe Harbor for weak, cowardly minds to parrot.

That is to say, the weaker of mid you are, the more willing to bend yourself to comport with The Collective, the more likely you are to ape the positions of the Left.

You need someone with brains to resist this, and pardon my language, you need someone with some balls.

Mike has both.

Andrew Breitbart's highest praise was to call someone "a warrior." If you were tough and courageous in your conservative chops, you got the accolade. You got called "a Warrior."

I never got called this myself, but I was always hoping I'd one day make the Warrior cut. But that's how Breitbart introduced Mike to me -- "a warrior."

When Breitbart was starting Breitbart.com, and needed an editor for Big Government, he hired Mike. Andrew wasn't looking for a clock-puncher. And he wasn't looking for weak sisters. He wanted Warriors --Mike Flynn, Dana Loesch, John Nolte. These aren't the sort of people to shrink from a fight, or to simper to the dominant Liberal Media Consensus in hopes that the alligator will eat them last.

Breitbart picked people who didn't mind throwing a punch, and people who didn't mind taking one.

And Mike Flynn was Breitbart's lieutenant from the beginning.

Mike Flynn understands, as Andrew Breitbart understood, that some fights cannot be ducked. Some fights must be had, even if it causes the Political Class intestinal discombobulation and might get them some nasty looks from their progressive pals.

I think Mike Flynn will immediately become a thought leader in Congress. If you think it's absurd that a freshman, half-turn Representative could become such -- ask yourself, how many other people are currently vying for the position?

Maybe six? Ten? Fifteen? Certainly almost no one from the Establishment -- they don't seek to convince their voters of the rightness of their decisions.

They merely seek to exhaust us from protesting them, until we protest no more.

And then they win.

I know a lot of you are beaten up and broken hearted. And I know that many of you think maybe it's time to just give up.

I know I feel that way. I have felt that way for a year at least. I have felt that way so long it feels like I never felt anything but that way.

But every once in a while, it's a good idea to try to believe, and to try throwing a punch, if only to convince ourselves that we still have the starch to do it.

Is the race winnable? It sure is. For some reason, Darin LaHood is promoting his endorsement by the US Chamber of Commerce, as if that's a good thing.

And supporters of Darin LaHood are acting desperate -- read this piece about the dishonest push-polls some supporters of LaHood are using against Mike. You'll remember supporters of LaHood previously made up a fake gay group to fake endorse Mike Flynn to scare voters away.

And I hear another tactic is taking Mike Flynn's endorsement of Rush Limbaugh's Operation: Chaos -- you remember, in 2008, when Obama was beating Hilary but had not quite won yet, Limbaugh suggested that Republicans in Pennsylvania, Illinois, and other late-voting states vote for Hillary in order to keep her in the race, and keep Obama spending money to fight her off, and keep the Democrat Party from unifying -- and claiming that this makes Mike, absurdly, a "secret Democrat."

Pushing Rush Limbaugh's Operation: Chaos makes you a Democrat?

Rush Freakin' Limbaugh is now part of the Secret Democrat Conspiracy against Obama's Transportation Secretary's Son?

Again: Who is the real "Entertainment Wing" here, and who are the people who are actually interested in ideas?

Mike Flynn's opponent is not a bad man, I imagine. But he seems to have fallen into country-club Republican politics the same way many hardware store owners' sons falls into hardware. Not out of any particular interest in the subject matter, but because it's the easiest way to make a comfortable living. You've got the connections, you've got the in, and, heck, your name is already written on the awning over the door.

As the son of Ray LaHood, former liberal Republican Congressman turned Obama Transportation Secretary, Darin LaHood is just the sort of man the Establishment likes.

Darin LaHood will be a reliable vote for the John Boehner/Karl Rove brand of suburban shopping mall Republicanism. If you want a little crony capitalism to go with your Skinny Vente Mocachino, Darin LaHood's your guy.

If you want something different -- something better -- something smarter -- something ballsier -- something that could actually change things in these dark days of America's last gasps, then vote for-- support -- knock on doors -- and donate to my friend Mike Flynn.

The first New Media candidate, the first Republican Congressmen -- God willing -- who really understands the new media environment, because it's been his day job for six years.

Believing is dangerous. Believing can wind up hurting, which is why few people are so willing to do so anymore.

Believing takes courage.

But faint heart never won fair lady. And this sort of tremulous, Im-so-embarrassed-these-goons-make-me-say-this style of Republican communication is not going to change the trajectory of the country from its current vector directly into the heart of Greece.

We need a change. We need a message, and we need a Messenger. We need to make a big noise that we will no longer put up with Business as Usual as the country, and indeed the world, burns.

We need Mike Flynn.

The primary is July 7 (the Establishment cooked up a short schedule to keep their boy from facing a rising challenge) so we need to work fast.

But we can do this.

This is a Romney +25 district. We do not have to settle for an Olympia Snowe candidate here.

Like Mike said to me, when I first asked him about is campaign message: "If we keep saying we want something different, don't we actually have to demand something different at some point"?

This election means a lot more than you know. The Establishment thinks they have our number -- that we grumble, that we whine, that we complain in blog comments and on calls to talk radio hosts, but, end of the day, We are blowhards and bigmouths who never actually do anything.

Well, Mike Flynn decided his days of just sitting around doing nothing were over.

I hope you'll support him.

We need to do something.

Note: Permission granted to re-publish this in whole or in part to anyone. Just include the link.

Andrew Breitbart's View: Lurkering Lurker posts this excerpt from Breitbart's "Righteous Indignation," p. 167-168 (hardback):

All I had to do now was make 'those unbelievable ACORN videos' a household phrase. Luckily, I had a sterling team on board. Big Gov was headed up by a good friend, Mike Flynn... Aside from being an outstanding writer and editor himself, Mike was by far my number one connector in Washington circles when it came to limited-government and fiscal-responsibility types. His last job had been with the Reason Foundation, so his conservative/libertarian credentials were intact. He understood state government because he'd worked there; he understood the federal government as well. He knew the best writers and researchers. So I asked Mike to fly out to California for 'an important meeting'; I wanted to do this in person. Sitting across from him, I had only one question that mattered: 'What do you know about ACORN?' A smile broke across his face. 'A lot.'"

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posted by Ace at 05:04 PM

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