Too many of his Congressional supporters live from pork, and will defend having pork to the death.Comment Posted By mannning On 25.02.2009 @ 11:28
The $400 billion funding bill is coming up this week, if I heard correctly. It has by count 9,000 pork line items in it. Obama is not going to try to fix it. Surprised?Comment Posted By mannning On 25.02.2009 @ 11:26
The GOP must forge a three-pronged attack. First must come the realism of what is wrong, then the well-founded optimism of how we can fix it all, and then the sound and basic principles of conservatism to be applied by the GOP to ensure it all stays that way.Comment Posted By mannning On 22.02.2009 @ 14:15
The short answer, bsjones, is a resounding YES!
We need to find, fix, and punish those who violate the law, and yes, let the punishment fit the crime. Perhaps we need a few more laws to close loopholes that allow some of these creeps to escape. Perhaps we need to rein in the power of the President to pardon money men--surely for altruistic reasons alone, don't you think?Comment Posted By mannning On 20.02.2009 @ 20:48
Duly noted that you are a FC/I, and also noted that you by definition have litmus tests for your positions, if only by the negation of conservative ones that you reject.
To succeed in getting a significant agenda of legislation passed, it is quite useful to have a solid voting majority of like-minded legislators. This is a situation you Independents will never have.Comment Posted By mannning On 18.02.2009 @ 23:50
So, Chuck, you are saying that liberals do not have litmus tests? Seems to me that for just about every conservative litmus test you can identify, there is an oppposite litmus test for liberals, which is a sort of backwards way of defining what liberals want out of life: hedonism and nihilism in short. Moral relativism and a heavy anti-religious bent goes with the liberal territory too. Your litmus tests not only turn me away from liberalism, it turns my stomach to realize just how many odious conformity and PC tests you actually demand of your denizens, in order to be....non-conservative!Comment Posted By mannning On 18.02.2009 @ 16:03
"Bravo! Well said. One of the big problems as I see it is to propose solutions to real world challenges without sounding like liberal lite. I’m sure there’s a way that can be accomplished but haven’t a clue where to begin."
In the first place, the problem is not sounding like liberal-lite, but actually being liberal-lite in intent. If what we come up with is merely a rephrasing of liberal positions in conservative terms to hide their real roots in liberalism, we are not only liberal-lite, we are liberals and should go sit with them.
Second, if it is so very difficult to find the way through this maze for you, then it must eventually dawn on you that what you are trying to articulate is most certainly too thin to be grasped by the rank and file, and too conscious of trying for the middle of the road to stir up the center-right or right partisan fevers needed to win elections.
By seriously trying to include the center-left in the big conservative tent, you are by definition threatening to compromize the principles of conservatism, or its other defining word preservation.
Just what must be preserved is the essential problem. No preservation, then no conservatism. Your statememts all along appear to me to be headed towards some compromise between right and left that truly leaves much of preservation behind, or so it seems.
Do we want to preserve the constitution, yes or no?
Do we want to stop legislation from the bench, yes or no?
Do we want to ensure fiscal responsibility in Congress, yes or no?
Do we want a fair contest in election cycles, yes, or no? By what means?
Do we want to eradicate corruption in government, yes or no? How?
Do we want to ensure that our legislators have the time and the obligation to read the bills they have had written, yes or no?
Do we want greater efficiency in how the government conducts its business, and without undue influence and micromanagement exerted by the Congress itself, yes or no?
Do we want a very strong military, yes or no?
Ddo we want to curb the power of congressional committees, their number, and their operating rules, yes or no? How?
Do you want to limit the number of terms one can serve in the Congress, yes, or no? Can we prevent the rise of political czars in each state?
Do we want the federal government out of education entirely, except for funneling no-strings grants to the states by some apportionment formula, yes or no?
Do we want to stop the practice of earmarks and pork, yes or no?
Do we want better, more objective criteria for assessing the worth of major federal tax receipt ecpenditures in specific districts, yes or no? (bridge to nowhere anyone?)
By formulating and answering a much broader set of questions such as these, you might see a pattern arising that more clearly defines what a conservative really wants in government. I would guess that there are at least 100 or more such questions for which we need definitive answers and the rationales behind them.
The result would be a conservative platform of considerable strength and depth, understood by all, and would lead to specific plans to achieve results in real life. It would trump Hope and Change with down-to-earth specifics.Comment Posted By mannning On 17.02.2009 @ 05:14
A final comment on this. I agree with you that reading about alternatives is useful.
However, I have not been talking about anything that I would call useful to anyone in their right mind. I am glad that you found Truthout innocuous now. It wasn't earlier, I can assure you.
Things change, I guess.Comment Posted By mannning On 19.02.2009 @ 01:23
The other aspect, Truthout, and its past, is not what you see now, I suspect.
There has been considerable moderation of the words and statements over the last few months and years in many of the leftist sites I have known, except perhaps at DU (Democratic Underground) and Daily Kos and the like.
Some have simply shut down, and others have tempered their fervor, the reason for which might be traceable to the then coming demise of Bush and Co and BDS, on the one hand, and to simple exhaustion on the other. It is hard to maintain the high adrenaline rush these sites exhibited for so long, and the invective thay all pitched at the US, at Republicans, and, especially, Conservatives. That they have toned down, or gone, now, in no way says that they are less threatening to the US.
Having said this, I have exactly no idea what can be done about it, if anything. Free speech is still operative, and it must remain so. We are trapped by our principles to allow hate speech to go unchecked.
I still have a sample of a radical, revolutionary statement I captured on one site that was indicative of the genre, if you are interested in reading such. I used to have many pages of their stuff from many sites, collected with the idea of showing them to someone, say, in the FBI, but they went out with my old PC and its dead hard drive a year ago, and I turned, frustrated, to other things.
Which reminds me: there was real fear expressed on Warblogging and on a few other sites that they were being monitored for possibly subversive activities. That just might explain some of the tamping down...Comment Posted By mannning On 19.02.2009 @ 01:13
You most certainly used my first option--Marxism--while ignoring the second and larger problem of socialism I listed.
It is larger because practically every step of our new President, and so many of his words are indicative of a socialist mind, and his staffing of compatriots from his former church into WH positions does not quiet the nagging fear that we actually have a socialist President. Stay tuned!
A survey reported in the Reader's Digest found that 2% of US responders to the question of whether they hated America or not, boldly answered YES.
Not quite the fraction of a percent you suggested, and, yes, not up to the threat level of 10% yet, either, if you believe that none of the responders held back on the question.
That still leaves about 6 million people in the US that really hate the nation and are willing to say so openly (given that the survey is sufficiently accurate).
Does this not cause you any alarm? It does me.Comment Posted By mannning On 19.02.2009 @ 00:29