Saturday, January 4, 2014

A Duck Dynasty Election, or an Obamacare Election?

A Kevin D. Williamson must read at NRO. Some excerpts:

With an eye on the upcoming congressional elections, there is a great deal of speculation about what is going to happen in 2014 to Republicans, who are divided and subdivided: Establishment vs. Tea Party, social conservatives vs. libertarians, military hawks vs. deficit hawks, etc. Prognostications about how those tensions are going to play out should be informed by what is not going to happen — for example, the United States of America in 2014 is not on the precipice of: 1) abolishing abortion; 2) restoring the marriage culture of the Eisenhower years; 3) returning to a prelapsarian constitutional order; 4) transforming itself into what we used to think of as a Swedish-style welfare state before Sweden reformed itself; 5) being overrun by jihadists; 6) being overtaken economically or militarily by China; 7) approaching the terminal point on the road to serfdom; 8) politically and morally repudiating its election and reelection of Barack Obama; 9) undergoing a generations-spanning ideological realignment; or 10) possessing a rational electorate. Feel free to check me on these this time next year.
The differences in the Republican party and in the conservative movement are partly philosophical and partly tactical. They are also in many cases the product of self-interest: In a values-driven movement, there is always a profit opportunity in staking out a position that is, if not holier than thou, then at least holier than John Boehner. Thus the risible complaints that Boehner and Mitch McConnell, two men who would have been among the most conservative leaders of Congress had they served in their current capacities during the Reagan years, are not “real conservatives,” and such inanities as Erick Erickson’s dismissing the American Conservative Union’s scorecard as “embarrassing” because of the high marks it gives to Senator McConnell.

I am not the most pragmatism-minded conservative in the world, but if your definition of “conservative” is too narrow to include the American Conservative Union or Rick Perry, you can pretty much count on never winning another election again ever. That’s fine if you make your living abusing elected Republicans and Republican candidates — better than fine, really: You can always keep whining that the Republicans would have won if they had run some “real conservatives” instead of whomever they do run, and there are enough half-bright people in the world to make up an attractive audience for advertisers. As a business model, that’s fine; but if your goal is changing the direction of the country, you might want to broaden your view.
If you want to have a Duck Dynasty election, you need to be able to answer the question of what you can really hope to get out of it.

On the other hand, the chaotic dysfunction of the Affordable Care Act regime presents conservatives with a very attractive opportunity. The Tea Party hates it, libertarians see it as a textbook example of the failure of political steering of economic sectors, spending hawks are terrified by the gushers of money it opens up, the business lobby resents the burdens it puts upon its constituents, the Religious Right recoils from its gross violations of the First Amendment and its forcible subsidy of abortifacients. (There’s probably something in there for the gung-ho military wing of the movement, too, but I can’t think of what it is.) Replacing Obamacare is something all conservatives can agree on, while most of the things we disagree on are beyond our  reach at the moment.

Read the rest here.

Speaking of Duck Dynasty, CNN asks if the GOP has a Duck Dynasty problem. I think we do, and, of course, liberals WANT us to have a Duck Dynasty problem.  When people like Sarah Palin and Tex Cruz champion a guy who says this about individual liberty:

"We hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal. And they've been endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. Those rights are rights that no government can take from you. To live, be free, and pursue happiness. You know what makes me happy ladies and gentleman? To blow a mallard duck's head smooth off."

Yes, we do have a Duck Dynasty problem. Read the rest here.

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Anonymous said...

Thanks, Bos!


BOSMAN said...

If I have MY WAY it will be ALL ABOUT OBAMACARE.

Obamacare will win for us in November.

The Democrats would like nothing more than to turn it into social issues.

If we let THAT HAPPEN...then we take the crown as the PARTY OF STUPID.

We can address all the social issues you want WHEN we win in November.

Anonymous said...

I agree Bosman. One of the reasons I posted this is because I believe we (the GOP) need to stop fracturing already and get together, and do nothing but hammer Obamacare for the next 3 years. These sideshow distraction are exactly the wrong way to go. I know it falls on deaf ears, though.

I admit that I have been a big part of the division here at RS for years. I can't change the past, but I do want to be better. I'm going to be better. That is a New Years Resolution!


Right Wingnut said...

Martha, if that's your New Years resolution, you've already blown it.

NOW, you want to "hammer" ObamaCare? Easy to say after it's already law. Where were you when it counted?

That's my one contribution to this thread, as I've decided that it's best for my sanity to avoid lengthy dialogue with you.

Anonymous said...

RW, I haven't blown it yet, and I'm not going to. :-)

I don't know what you mean by where was I when it counted. I've been right here opposing it from beginning to this moment. Now that people see the folly of it, we can make some headway--if we choose our battles wisely.

Anyway, have a nice day.


cimbri said...

Agree 100%. Let's keep social issues in church, where it belongs.

Anonymous said...

Polls show the pro-life movement is making significant gains. More and more Americans are seeing abortion for what it is, thankfully. Still a long way to go, though. I don't think abortion should be relegated to church. If anything, it needs a better ad campaign, and some real money behind it.


Anonymous said...

I meant the pro-life movement needs a better ad campaign, and money.


Anonymous said...

We need Romney to run again. Romneycare works.

Anonymous said...

We voted for Romney, that's where we were.