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The Harry Reid School of "Governance"

(some of this article taken from my original post under the title, "Smart Alek or Wise Guy?" on 11/22/04 at Polipundit.com )

Some years back, I was talking about intelligence with my wife, who was unhappy because I said she was "smart". You see, she thought I was patronizing her, saying things I didn't mean to make her feel better. I finally helped her see what I was saying; that there are different classes of intelligence and ability. The gourmet chef uses different skills and knowledge than a courtroom lawyer or a retail executive or a musician or anyone else. A person should not be considered 'below' someone else, because they are not accomplished in one particular area. It occurs to me, that the Democratic Party has yet to learn this critical lesson.

John Kerry's facade in 2004 was the epitome of the Potemkin Village, all image and no substance. For a time, I worried that voters might buy into the lie, and miss the man as he really measures. Now I know, Americans are generally able and willing to spot out the fakes and reject them, especially when they have the genuine article for comparison. While President Bush had his own issues of false persona to address, they were not nearly as egregious as Kerry's, and Americans recognized that fact.

It struck me as strange, for all of that, that the Democrats would not have recognized how thin Kerry's image was, or that a critical number of voters would see through it. But seeing the reactions to the election from the likes of Edwards and Daschle, Pelosi and Dowd, Gore and Rather, I also realize that the Democrats' leadership had blocked out any focus but their own narrow vision, so that corrective advice was pre-emptively rejected.

(continued)

The Democrats grabbed control of Congress in 2006, in part because they continue to dominate minorities with scare tactics and demagoguery. The Democrats continue to control most of the major cities in the United States, where excessive bureaucracy and taxation are accepted without the rebellion which occurs in most of the nation. This means that the Liberal message (speaking connotatively) will continue for the forseeable future, and Democrats will continue to get elected wherever Socialism and Class Warfare are considered reasonable positions.

The Democrats have rejected any strategy which relies on common sense and a unified America. They rely on factions, hoping to prevail on the activism of select portions of the voters, while the Republicans try to apply broader, national, messages. The 2006 election resulted, in part, from the GOP trying to copy the Democrats' tactics while ignoring voter worries and questions. The GOP failed to deliver a consistent message, and so lost control of the agenda. But this is, if history continues as it has for the past five decades, an aberration in the tide. The Democrats are rigidly controlled by their leadership, their consensus is more difficult to develop and continue; it's one of the reasons why Democrats accomplish small victories in a long period of time, while Republicans tend to win large battles, but intermittently - since the GOP allows for dissent and debate within its ranks, Democrats can use this debate to break consensus and kill legislation. Americans have seen this, no matter how it was hidden, and taken note.

Now Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has made a number of regrettable statements. Not only that any decent American would regret such sentiments, but that at some point in the future I believe the Democrats will be quite sorry Harry got hold of a microphone. For now, however, the extremists in the Democratic Party have hijacked the war and are doing their worst to drive the campaign to the nearest hole. It may be plainly said that the Democrats seriously intend to bring about U.S. casualties in Iraq by encouraging terrorist resistance, in the hope that they can use the slaughter for their personal political gain. The voice from the Left has gone full course from supporting the war and the men fighting it, to spiteful hate against everyone trying to win in Iraq or finish the job begun in 2003. There is no honorable debate among Democrats anymore on this point - they have established the defeat of the United States as their primary objective. What Democrats of honor remain, such as Senator Joe Lieberman, are silenced and suppressed, made outcasts and warned not to interfere with party objectives. Scarcely in human history has a major political party hoped such vile desires against its soldiers, and schemed such traitorous plots against the nation of their birth and heritage.

The Democrats will continue to exist as a major political party for decades to come. But by their own hand, they are committing themselves to second-tier status. Americans understand and respect traditional liberal values, but they won't tear down their moral values to advance liberal ideals. Democrats continue to misunderstand what those moral values are; values which transcend part, which the voters expect, frankly, any serious candidate to embrace, like not undermining authority in wartime, or sticking to the issues in an election and eschewing personal attacks by the candidate or his staff, or recognizing the honor in a candidate, even an opponent. It seems that when a candidate displays these qualities, Democrats regard it as a sign of weakness rather than strength, and this badly mis-judges the American sense of honor.


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Comments (29)

DJ, dear colleague, I hate ... (Below threshold)

DJ, dear colleague, I hate you.

You'll understand at 2:00.

Everyone will.

(sigh)

J.

???... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

???

Scrapping a post Jay?... (Below threshold)
Heralder:

Scrapping a post Jay?

Heh, scheduled posting bit ... (Below threshold)
brainy435:

Heh, scheduled posting bit him in the ass, huh?

The Democrats have... (Below threshold)
The Democrats have rejected any strategy which relies on common sense and a unified America. They rely on factions, hoping to prevail on the activism of select portions of the voters, while the Republicans try to apply broader, national, messages.

Very well written, DJ, and absolutely spot-on.

I thought that the reason why so many Dems got behind Kerry was because he was "The Anti-Bush". So pretzeled were they by media- and Democrat-promoted BDS that they were willing to overlook the fact that The Empororer Wore No Clothes.

However, a slightly larger faction of the American public saw through the hype. I have often thought that the 'tipping point' came with Kerry's speech at the Democratic National Convention. The moment Kerry strode up to the podium, assumed a salute and exclaimed "I'm John Kerry reporting for duty" the gig was up. I swear I heard a gasp from my my more independent-minded neighbors, but perhaps it was just my jaw hitting the floor.

I disagree with you on the ... (Below threshold)
Sindarian:

I disagree with you on the loss of the '06 election by the Republicains. The midnight passing of the ban on internet poker for money was the key action in the loss. Millions of men and women play poker online and most support or at least neutral to the Republicain party. The ban changed that and I saw many that voted Democrat on that issue alone. I am sure that there are many like myself that consider the one party has it right on personal issues and the other has it right on world issues. It's not much to get them to switch when you hit them in the wallet.

DJ:Americans unde... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

DJ:
Americans understand and respect traditional liberal values, but they won't tear down their moral values to advance liberal ideals

The word 'liberal' does not describe the modern Democrat (which is why I typically use 'Liberal'). The Barrister at Maggie's Farm accurately described the 'Liberalism' of modern Democrats:

The New Liberalism is Authoritarian Populism, more or less, with a socialist reflex, and has a very high tolerance for state involvement in, and control over, our lives
maggiesfarm.anotherdotcom.com/archives/5103-Live-Free-or-Die.html

No _mike_. Too finicky, and... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

No _mike_. Too finicky, and "populism" doesn't stay in it's own yard. Populism overrides ideology. The last US liberal-conservative line lasting longer than 10 years (and still holds up well today) is the liberal/pro-union: conservative/anti-union paradigm of the first FDR administration.

bryanD,Could you e... (Below threshold)
ke_future:

bryanD,

Could you explain a little better what you are trying to say in regards to "Too finicky" nad populism not staying in its own yard?

"President Bush had his own... (Below threshold)
jp2:

"President Bush had his own issues of false persona to address, they were not nearly as egregious as Kerry's, and Americans recognized that fact."

Really? I would think any poll you ever looked at over the last two years would disprove this theory of yours.

jp2, if you are mistaking o... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

jp2, if you are mistaking opinion polls for consistent indicators of credibility and political identification, you need a remedial course in statistics.

The Democrats won in '06 fo... (Below threshold)
Chris G:

The Democrats won in '06 for the following reasons

1. Bush got many Repbublicans, who were in trouble in '02-'04 elected on principles such as government reform, ethics reform, social security reform, fighting the war on terror, and spendiing reform.

2. Those same Republicans failed on all counts. Congressman were nabbed on both sides of the ailse doing malfeasance, but Denny Hastert stood up and defended the investigation of malfeasance by the FBI as a seperation of powers issue.

The only person debating social security was Bush, pork spending was an embarrassment, spending in general was laughable, exemplified by the prescription drug benefit, and the failure of the Republican congress to provide oversite of the war and other isssues was key.

3. Not to mention the Republican congress basically sat on their backsides after winning the election in '04

4. The Republican congress took for granted that the War on Terror would give them a pass on their inefficiency

5. The prominent Democrats were smart enough to be very silent and out of site the before the last election. No public statements by Pelosi the week before the election. No public appearances by Reid. No calls for pulling out Iraq. It was actually pretty surreal. Was there even a pre-election charge in the air?

But never fail. Democrats are good at being the opposition, but flat out bad at being in power. Instead of governing, they are now attemtping to run the White house from the Capital building. They got rid of Rumsfield (justified), trying to get rid of Gonzalez (absolute B.S.) and now they subpeonaed Rice to testify about pre-war intelligence (like Rice woke up one day and was the only one to say "Saddam had WMDs).

So the goal right now is to dismantle the Bush adminsitration piece by piece. This will go on until the election when a Democrat will get elected. Simply rewind back to 1992 and press play. Terrorist will once again smell the weakness in the air and voila, we will be back to square one.

ke_future, populis... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

ke_future,

populism is reactionary. Who are the elites?

There were the so-called Regulator movements in the Virginia and North Carolina frontiers fighting for populist political causes, one THROUGH the government against the indians (for land), and one AGAINST the government's policy (for land).Their goals both included Land and were ideologically the SAME (property rights for whites) but in a Political context they're DIFFERENT , viz.the elites (government policy: for or against).
So Dems and Pubs can have populist wings for certain agendas, but the revolution devours its children every time.

ke_future, The Schu... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

ke_future,
The Schutzstaffeln eats the Sturmableitung: that's a CLASSIC example!

ANOTHER Nazi analogy?... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

ANOTHER Nazi analogy?

Oy.

BryanD is incapable of even... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

BryanD is incapable of even the simplest logic. That applies both in giving and receiving. But then if you smoked as much rock as BD, I know I would be luck to even get on internet.

ZRIII:I'll always re... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

ZRIII:
I'll always remember you for your Gotcha Gone Awry toward me. "AHA! Mussolini wasn't ruling in the 30s because Italy had a king then!" And you were dumbfounded to learn from me that Victor Emanuel hired AND FIRED Il Duce!
Anyway, once your Sugarpacket Professorship Lessons are done you'll be real, real smart!

ANOTHER Nazi analogy?... (Below threshold)
bryanD:

ANOTHER Nazi analogy?

Oy.

Posted by: DJ Drummond

Did I make fun of your Presidential RTS game dreams? Noooo!

And we're living in a post-Hitler world. Atlantic Alliance, UN, the Bomb: all reactions to Nazism.

Game, bryanD?Shows... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Game, bryanD?

Shows how little attention you pay.

In any case that's another subject, on a different site.

Relevance is a serious problem for you, perhaps.

The Democrats have rejec... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

The Democrats have rejected any strategy which relies on common sense and a unified America. They rely on factions, hoping to prevail on the activism of select portions of the voters, while the Republicans try to apply broader, national, messages. The 2006 election resulted, in part, from the GOP trying to copy the Democrats' tactics while ignoring voter worries and questions. The GOP failed to deliver a consistent message, and so lost control of the agenda. But this is, if history continues as it has for the past five decades, an aberration in the tide. The Democrats are rigidly controlled by their leadership, their consensus is more difficult to develop and continue; it's one of the reasons why Democrats accomplish small victories in a long period of time, while Republicans tend to win large battles, but intermittently - since the GOP allows for dissent and debate within its ranks, Democrats can use this debate to break consensus and kill legislation. Americans have seen this, no matter how it was hidden, and taken note.
DJ Drummond

DJ,
You're all over the place in this paragraph. First off, I'm not going to say Dems do or don't use a strategy which relies on common sense or a unified America, but Republicans certainly don't. Some of the main issues we've heard from them over the past few elections are purposely divisive: abortion, gay marriage, and even the war. Republicans staged the Iraq War vote before the 2002 election for the express purpose of garnering an electoral advantage from it. They've called anyone who disagrees with them terrorist sympathizers. Hell, the basic premise of the Republican platform is "You don't want liberals taking over, do you?"

Next you say Dems rely on factions, but later you say they are rigidly controlled by their leadership, and "their consensus is more difficult to develop and continue". Huh? I see the connection between the first and last points, but how does the rigidly controlled by leadership fit in? There may be a valid point here, but it certainly requires more elaboration.

You also say Republicans allow dissent and debate - HA! Were you awake during the Tom Delay-run House? Where exactly was this debate you say existed, cause I sure didn't see it. Where was the dissent on Iraq before the war - the meek Linc Chafee? Where was anyone calling for accountability in Iraq or Katrina? You call that dissent? You must be kidding. There may be some debate on immigration and abortion within the Republican party, but that's about it.

Another passage which cracks me up: "The 2006 election resulted, in part, from the GOP trying to copy the Democrats' tactics ..." What are you talking about? The Republicans lost because they weren't competent, didn't know how to govern other than rubber-stamp the president, didn't provide any oversight of an Administration which the majority of people don't trust, etc. What tactics of Democrats did they adopt? And why would they try to adopt Democratic tactics - the Repubs had won the past several elections, wouldn't they stick to their guns?

Also, what does this mean: "Americans have seen this, no matter how it was hidden, and taken note." Where is your proof for this? Bush is still in the low 30's while approval of Congress has risen from the 20's during the Republicans to the 40's during the Dems. Now that is not a glowing endorsement, but it is improvement.

Some more choice quotes:

The voice from the Left has gone full course from supporting the war and the men fighting it, to spiteful hate against everyone trying to win in Iraq or finish the job begun in 2003.

What are you talking about? Yes, there was support for Afghanistan, but Iraq was a different story. The public was very hesitant and skeptical (and now we see rightly so), there were worldwide protests, and ~50% of Dems voted against the war from the start.

Scarcely in human history has a major political party hoped such vile desires against its soldiers, and schemed such traitorous plots against the nation of their birth and heritage.

My only response: Go Cheney Yourself.

Democrats continue to misunderstand what those moral values are; values which transcend part, which the voters expect, frankly, any serious candidate to embrace, like not undermining authority in wartime, or sticking to the issues in an election and eschewing personal attacks by the candidate or his staff, or recognizing the honor in a candidate, even an opponent.

"Not undermining authority in wartime". When we've been lied to, deceived, had torture and rendition carried out in our name, thrown away some of the most basic rights for other human beings which our country was founded on? But don't dare undermine that authority. And you say Dems are "rigidly controlled by their leadership".

"sticking to the issues in an election and eschewing personal attacks by the candidate or his staff": Ever hear of Karl Rove or Newt Gingrich? I'm pretty sure they invented the politics of personal destruction.

"recognizing the honor in a candidate, even an opponent": Did John Kerry or Al Gore receive this treatment? What about Max Cleland? Sure spouting platitudes sounds nice, but you should consider the real-life application of these ideas.

DJ, You have made good arguements in the past, but this one definitely falls short.

jp2:Really? I ... (Below threshold)
marc:

jp2:

Really? I would think any poll you ever looked at over the last two years would disprove this theory of yours.

Are we to believe you are so stupid that you fail to understand DJ's quote referred to the two elections Bush won and not the the last two years?

Very typical of you, you drive by, drop your own special brand of turd wisdom, and run for the hills.

May I suggest put your keyboard where your mouth is and request author privileges at Wizbang Blue.

Have you got the gonads? Or do you prefer to remain an insignificant fly on the wall.

DJ, look at those first 14 ... (Below threshold)
kim:

DJ, look at those first 14 commenters on that PP thread. Now tell me there isn't deliberate disinformation in play today.
======================================

sean, you remind me of the ... (Below threshold)
kim:

sean, you remind me of the point of the story of the fella who admits to being born at night, but not last night. You're 'pretty sure' the politics of personal destruction were invented by Gingrich and Rove? Why does that sentence make me not want to read another thing you write for the rest of time?
===============================

bD, it's teilung not leitun... (Below threshold)
kim:

bD, it's teilung not leitung, and I think your historical sense was eaten, or at least bitten, in the cradle. There are a great deal more, and more interesting, classical cases of the few vs the many.
============================

And the authoritarian popul... (Below threshold)
kim:

And the authoritarian populism bit explains why you can't help but Godwin even when you don't intend to do so; it's projection. Sorry if the truth hurts; it doesn't effect the music.
===============================

jp2, you've bought the fals... (Below threshold)
kim:

jp2, you've bought the false persona sold to you by the MSM. You never had it so good. Bush is CEO of the world and adding stakeholder value daily, even for the resentful ones. Better sell unless the board can hire a successor as effective.
===========================

sean, you remind me of t... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

sean, you remind me of the point of the story of the fella who admits to being born at night, but not last night. You're 'pretty sure' the politics of personal destruction were invented by Gingrich and Rove? Why does that sentence make me not want to read another thing you write for the rest of time?
kim

of everything I wrote, that's what you choose to rebut and say that gives you basis for disregarding everything else? Fine, I'll retract that statement and replace it with this:

Karl Rove and Newt Gingrinch used dirty politics more extensively than anyone in modern times.

Is that better? Now, please feel free to address any other point.

Naw, Melanie Sloan is far m... (Below threshold)
kim:

Naw, Melanie Sloan is far more vile.
======================

[ paranoid irrational rants... (Below threshold)
kim:

[ paranoid irrational rants do not add to the value of the onversation ]

DJ




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