Sobering truth

Fearsome Comrade, the latest addition to the blogroll, has a sobering (albeit pessimistic) view on what the Republicans will really do, should they manage to wrest back Congress from the Democrats:

The problem with Republicans is that few of them understand why they win or why they lose elections. They never credit conservatism for their victories and always blame it for their defeats.

I don’t see the Party changing. I think that Republicans are by nature weak and doubtful of the strength of conservative ideas. They are extremely prone to thinking that liberalism is what people want, even when a liberal wins an election by pretending to be a conservative. They look at Democrats as the cool kids on the playground that everyone likes, and see themselves as the dorks that can only win friends by giving away all their Fruit Roll-Ups and doing the cool kids’ homework.

I hope he’s wrong, but I’m not holding my breath.

Steele – not ready, not willing, not able

Via Michelle Malkin comes this Mark Steyn article on why the Michael Steele debacle is so bad:

Kathryn, in all the Rush-bashing, I was more disturbed by Michael Steele’s wretched performance. His initial reaction — that Rush’s show is “incendiary” and “ugly” — revealed:

a) that he never listens to it;

b) that he takes his cues from the mainstream media


In two brief soundbites, Mr. Steele has managed to suggest to his own party base that he has a lazy disposition that reflexively shares the liberal biases, and to allow the wider world to portray him as a craven squish. This is not encouraging. At the very minimum, he does not appear ready for primetime.

This shows that not only is he apparently a moron, but he is also out-of-touch and spineless. How could someone who is supposedly in charge of the party claiming conservatism never have bothered to listen to a three hour radio show that influences is listened to by over twenty million of his party’s constituents? And even if he hadn’t, he didn’t have the guts to admit his error, or even stand up for the principles of the man he was deriding.

Instead, he used all the buzzwords that the “drive by media” likes to use against Limbaugh, and then quickly apologized for being unintentionally offensive in using them after the aforementioned constituency started to get irritated about it. So he first proves himself clueless, and then backs it up with spinelessness.

Not ready for primetime? Mark, you’re understating it. The man is a liability.

Michael Steele, you’re a moron.

I tried to ignore the comments about “slum love” in regards to Bobby Jindal and “bling-bling” in reference to the economy, on the grounds that maybe you were just trying to look like a total moron to pander to your audience.

But it turns out you really are a total moron. A complete, clueless, contemptible moron. Because today you again missed the entire point of what has happened in the last month, still insisting that you want Obama to succeed (regardless of the fact that his success means the death of this nation as we know it!) and for conservatives to simply shut up and get in line. And then, you threw Rush Limbaugh under the bus – for D.L. Hughley of all people. On CNN. You accused him of being “ugly” and “incendiary,” nothing more than an “entertainer,” and agreed that CPAC “looked like Nazi Germany!

To D.L. Hughley!

Do you not see the irony in that, Mr. Steele? That you somehow respect that lunatic comedian Hughley over a man like Limbaugh whose contributions to American conservatism are practically the only reason we’re not far worse off than we are? And on a network like CNN, whose vehement opposition to all things conservative is well-known, and who harbors some of the hardest-left sentiment on television today?

Instead, you denigrate one of your strongest allies, and along with him tens of millions of like-minded citizens who want to see American conservatism make a comeback. However, with you at the wheel of the RNC, making idiot mistake after idiot mistake, I’m not sure we’ll be here to see it happen under your party. Maybe Ross Perot was on to something after all.

And for pete’s sake, the constant “ghetto slang” is irritating. Cut it out. Act like a man, not a child, and stop trying to prove your “blackness.” Conservatives don’t care whether you’re black, white, red, yellow or purple. We care about what you say and do. And frankly, you’ve been one hell of a disappointment so far.

Edit: He has now apologized for being “inarticulate.” Says he wasn’t trying to slam Rush with those comments – though it’s hard to find any other meaning. Oh, and no withdrawl of his comparing CPAC to Nazi Germany. Nice.

On Bobby Jindal

I’ve found the blogosphere’s collective reaction to Bobby Jindal’s rebuttal speech the other night rather surprising in many ways – and sadly expected in others.  The responses seem to fall in three major groups:

  1. Allahpundits – Could just as easily be named after LGF, but I’ve already poked that bear once this week. These are the conservatives who reacted strongly in a negative way to Jindal’s response, often reacting negatively to Jindal himself for various reasons (chiefly his pro-ID stance or strong orthodox Catholicism, from what I have seen). They criticize his form or his beliefs while generally (sometimes reluctantly) praising his content.
  2. Dittoheads – The Rush Limbaugh types who love what he said and don’t care how he said it. They see Jindal as the next coming of Reagan, the Conservative counterpart to Barack Obama. Rush praised Jindal on his show, going so far as to say that “I don’t want to hear from you ever again if you think that what Bobby Jindal said was bad or what he said was wrong or not said well, because, folks, style is not going to take our country back.”
  3. Liberals – Hated on Jindal for his politics, beliefs, race, and everything else you can think of. From Chris Matthews’ “oh god” and “outsourcing” comments to Paul Begala’s “kook right” cracks, backed by endless commenters decrying him as simply the GOP’s attempt to play the race card (hello, Michael Steele) – we see the seething leftist masses decrying the Lousiana governor simply for opening his mouth to challenge the Annointed One.

And then there’s me. I fall somewhere between the first two points, but leaning more toward the Dittohead crowd – Jindal’s otherwise-brilliant performance was tarnished by a slightly wooden demeanor. I think he was trying too hard to play to the crowd, or as Ace put it, “channel his inner Bubba.”  He, like Mitt Romney, cannot pull this off successfully, and comes off as fake when trying to do so. Instead, he should be allowed to present himself as who he is – a somewhat stiff intellectual, who is also brilliant and insightful. Conservatism is not about appeals to emotion – appealing to what feels good is practically the definition of liberalism – but it must be communicated effectively. Reagan is remembered as great not because he made people feel warm and fuzzy, but because he made smart choices and then communicated them effectively, while not compromising his position. This is the conservatism that the GOP needs to rediscover if it wants to succeed.

Ed Morrisey has his appearance on the Today show the day after the rebuttal speech. Here, he is engaged in a discussion where he provides quick, confident, specific answers and facts and appears confident and passionate. This is Jindal at his best. Unlike Sarah Palin, who excelled at getting in front of a crowd and getting them hyped up in a rah-rah style of enthusiasm, but didn’t appear confident when having to quickly shift gears (especially with a hostile interviewer), Jindal is much better one-on-one where he can directly react and respond to the other party. He is analytical and quick on his feet when taking questions or even attacks, and is able to respond strongly and effectively. It is for this reason that I would like to see a ticket along the lines of Jindal/Palin for 2012 – a strong, focused, extremely intelligent leader at the top of the ticket, with a powerful supporting figure who can energize and relate more effectively supporting the ticket. While I don’t know where these politicians will be in three years – or if Palin can recover from her “Quayling” – it will be interesting to see what happens next.

Shotgun Linking – Obama Day Three Edition

Day three, still no unicorn.

Because I don’t have the energy to come up with a full-size post for each of these, I give thee a bullet list: