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Road Map: First 100 Days

Congratulations are in order for President-Elect Obama. While I may disagree with him on nearly every policy position, it is a truly remarkable event to behold when, just a few short decades ago, much of the nation was entrenched in shameful segregation, from schools to diners to drinking fountains. And today, what may have seemed a most improbable event is now an historic occasion.

However, just as my opposition to Obama had nothing to do whatsoever with the color of his skin, it does quite remain fundamental differences with the color of his politics. There is a battle ahead for the future of this nation. And, after a brief pause to recharge the batteries, evaluate and contemplate the coming battles, engage we must.

Want a road map for the first 100 Days? Peter Kirsanow nails it to the table.

But in the meantime, we still have principles to defend and we must defend them vigorously. Particularly in the first 100 days when many of the most objectionable bills will likely be brought up. For those inclined to make nice, which of the following Democratic agenda items are you prepared to sign on to so that you'll get invited to the right parties?
  • Employee Free Choice Act
  • Fairness Doctrine
  • Freedom of Choice Act
  • Nationalization of health care
  • Estate tax increases
  • "Comprehensive Immigration Reform" (driver's licenses for illegals)
  • Capital gains tax increases
  • Defense cuts
  • Liberal judicial appointments
  • Racial and ethnic preferences
  • Income tax increases
  • Bans on oil drilling
  • Global poverty tax/Kyoto

These are but a few. Perhaps the most worrisome agenda items are those that will betray a fecklessness in foreign policy that could lead to a nuclear Iran, a vulnerable Israel, an imperial Russia, and an imploding Pakistan.

In many cases, the congressional math may preclude Republicans from little more than voicing principled opposition. But that's not nothing. It's imperative. Republican politicians for too long have been spectacularly inept in communicating their ideas, principles and positions. They've been unconscionably silent in defending their own. They shouldn't then be surprised when they get their hindquarters handed to them.

Extend that to each 100 days that follows.

Principles matter. Stand for them, don't compromise them. Communicate them, don't mumble them.

Congratulations, Mr. Obama. We will be seeing you, Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi on the battlefield of ideas, numbers be damned.


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Comments (27)

Thanks, Steve, for having c... (Below threshold)
max:

Thanks, Steve, for having class. However you feel about his politics, you have to give credit where credit is due. I didn't think I'd ever see a black president in my lifetime. Absolutely amazing.

I wonder what he's going to... (Below threshold)
Tim:

I wonder what he's going to do when he finds out he's not allowed to vote 'present'.

Congratulations Barack Huss... (Below threshold)
La Mano:

Congratulations Barack Hussein Obama:

1. For bringing Chicago-style political corruption and intimidation to a national level.
2. For raising untold millions of illegal foreign and domestic campaign contributions through a system without even modest levels of controls.
3. For effectively hiding your complete disregard for the Constitution and its irrelevance as written by old, white, European males centuries ago.
4. For calling for a "fundamental transformation" of America and effectively labeling it, "change", while really pedaling an old and discredited Marxist agenda of wealth redistribution and a political philosophy that government should manage its citizenry by taking from each according to his ability and distributing to each according to his needs.
5. For insisting that the Bill of Rights was a modest first step and that a second Bill of Rights is needed to guarantee that all Americans are beneficiaries of certain goods and services regardless of whether they were earned and regardless of whether they must be confiscated from others.
6. For proving that dishonesty and corruption can, at least sometimes, overcome honor and integrity.
7. For proving that symbolism can prevail over substance and competence.
8. For proving that playing the 'race card' can still be an effective strategy in the 21st century.
9. For pinpointing a defining moment in history where American exceptionalism has peaked.
10. For preparing the world for America's unilateral disarmament.
11. For proving the Founding Fathers wrong in their belief that a free press would not be collectively corrupt.
12. For proving the Founding Fathers right in their grave concerns about the "tyranny of the majority".
13. For demonstrating that we really don't need to be our brother's keeper, or our aunt's or our half-brother's.
14. For demonstrating that charitable giving need not be an individual choice but done through government with the requisite government surcharge, of course.
15. For demonstrating that class-warfare can be an effective political strategy.

Thanks for the same reasons... (Below threshold)
Steve Schippert:

Thanks for the same reasons, Max. Class in victory is more difficult than class in defeat.

I will surely appear the Evil One with frothing mouth and darting eyes soon enough, as my differences on policy and approach are light years from his - as I am sure was clear in the campaign.

Here's the thing: Most of us want the same things - and this is lost in the heated arguments.

Cheers...

I like your list Steve. Let... (Below threshold)
JFO:

I like your list Steve. Lets hope the 2nd 100 days brings even more.

We will be seeing you, S... (Below threshold)

We will be seeing you, Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi on the battlefield of ideas, numbers be damned.

We'll be sharing our culture with them all day.

/Leonidas

I'll be damned if I'll cong... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

I'll be damned if I'll congradulate an America hating Marxist whose primary goal will be the destruction of the United States. Bipartisan "niceness" and the conciliation of spinelessness are at least partly to blame for an Obama White House. Perhaps there were Frenchmen who congradulated Hitler on his brilliant defeat of their country, but I'm not about to join them.

Bizarre comments.P... (Below threshold)
Conservator:

Bizarre comments.

Perhaps you are not familiar with Peter Viereck, Steve. I'm assuming not. He was the First Conservative, long before Buckley.

You might enjoy this, but it is beyond many who comment here and at least a few of those who publish here. He passed on recently, before Buckley. This is from an article in the New Yorker a few years back:


Viereck was an anomaly, insisting on a moral distinction between the moderate and the totalitarian left and, as conservatives began to attain political influence, denouncing what he perceived as the movement's demagogic tendencies. Conservatives, he wrote in 1955, are "trying to overthrow an old ruling class and replace it from below by a new ruling class. . . . The new would-be rulers include unmellowed plebeian Western wealth"--here he singled out Texan oil money--"and their enormous gullible mass-base."

In 1962, he published an attack on conservatives in The New Republic, titled "The New Conservatism: One of Its Founders Asks What Went Wrong," in which he depicted a movement infiltrated by religious fundamentalists, paranoid patriotic groups, and big-business leaders, united in their loathing for the cosmopolitan élites on the nation's coasts. "American history is based on the resemblance between moderate liberalism and moderate conservatism," he wrote, and this tradition, which had saved the United States from Europe's violent fate, conservatives now threatened to destroy.

It is excerpted in this rather humorous post by John Holbo at Crooked Timber:

He was using abusive and obscene language, calling people Conservatives and all that.

Other links are there. You realize that since the days of Buckley, the conservative movement has been purging people left and right. I leave it to you to read the history and decide for yourself why so many conservatives have chosen to vote for Obama. Your movement, and the party it has taken over, has left them.

Viereck and Eisenhower sound like they were on the same page.

... to attain any success it is quite clear that the Federal government cannot avoid or escape responsibilities which the mass of the people firmly believe should be undertaken by it. The political processes of our country are such that if a rule of reason is not applied in this effort, we will lose everything--even to a possible and drastic change in the Constitution. This is what I mean by my constant insistence upon "moderation" in government. Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are H. L. Hunt (you possibly know his background), a few other Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid.

To date Obama has NEVER sai... (Below threshold)

To date Obama has NEVER said "No" to the Far Left...EVER!

I take people at their word...his words scared me during the campaign and haunt me now.

Over time Obama has supported (and/or promised to):
- gut the coal industry
- making it a crime to defend yourself in your own home with a firearm
- deny medical care to babies accidentally born during abortions
- create a "Civilian Security Force, just as strong, just as large and just as well funded as the military"
- "re-distribute" the wealth of the nation
- withdraw from Iraq "regardless of conditions on the ground"

etc........

Starting January 20 I will NOT have a President. Whether Obama evers BECOMES my President will depend on how much he decides to be AMERICA'S President, versus DAILY KOS' President!

The Ship of State has a hel... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

The Ship of State has a hell of a lot of inertia, and the course isn't turned on a whim. Pres. Obama may want to turn things sharply left - but it's not going to be an easy task for him even with the willing cooperation of Reid and Pelosi.

But Steve is correct - I wouldn't have anticipated a Black President so soon after the end of Segregation. That we've elected Obama (not that I voted for him) is a historic thing, and not one to be easily discounted.

Obama's first select... (Below threshold)
Larry:


Obama's first selection, his Chief of Staff, is a serious piece of work. His name is Rahm Emanuel, smart, tough, relentless and partisan to the death. His comment about Republicans is simple; F*ck em.

And that sets the tone, doesn't it?

I will say congrats to the ... (Below threshold)
Deke:

I will say congrats to the liberals also, but would caution them not to take this as a defeat of conservatism. They must remember that the Republican party has been run by Karl Rove "Compassionate Conservatives" for 3 election cycles which has led to a clouded message of quasi liberalism mixed with a muddled since of "just slightly less government than the Democrats"

I see Republicans with 2 choices to save the party 1: Get involved at the grass roots and take the party back from the Rove Rinos, the Boeners, Bushes, etc., and start pushing true conservatives with energy and the ability to communicate. Socially conservative Protestant and Catholics, the dreaded "Religious Right" were cast aside like garbage because it was percieved that it made us look to harsh for the general elections, of course this watering down of the conservative message filtered down to state level and has cost us, lets face it the Republican brand has no CLEAR message it has become democrat light!
2: A true, serious look at a 3rd party suplanting. I know I've heard the arguments extensivly about why we can't have a new party and they are probably valid, BUT do we have 20 years to wait to regain control from the Blue Blood and compassionate conservatives? I've taken a good look around the country at local and state wide elections and found that those candidates who ran from a true conservative base won handily, a prime example is Harris County Texas, a very large urban county, 4th largest Metro area in the U.S., where most ballots were cast straight ticket, more heavily democrat, YET people went back in and voted for TRUE conservatives and even sent a liberal, Nick Lampson, home. Mary Landrieu in Louisiana barely held on against a career politcian who ran as a liberal Democrat just a couple years ago, if Conservatives had any kind of base organization that was a seat in the Senate easily taken. The strength of many Libertarian candidates across the country and other examples are true proof that conservatism is not dead but that the message has been hijacked. Reagan was not only a true conservative both fiscally and socially, but was able to communicate those ideas plainly and never wavered, leading to the largest electoral college wins in history. The popularity of Palin, despite a full court assault to demonize her by the MSM, the buzz surrounding Jindal, these are things to build on and build we must!

Another very scary thing is the appointment of judges, since the legislature has abdicated their responsibility and turned it over to the Black Robes, there will be no stopping unpopular, no matter the extreme, of judicial legislation, that's right they create legislation now and there is no denying it. Here is a very real scenario I can see happening with BHO appointments. As we know in a 5-4 decision the 2nd amendment was upheld. Now if BHO gets to appoint a judge that is reversed. Let's say with that Vermont votes to ban handgun ownership and require that all rifles/shotguns must be in the home with locks in place. Someone from a state that allows handguns moves to Vermont and committs a crime with said gun, Vermont sues the state for help in supplanting the cost of enforcement, this is not far fetched was tried by New York on one of the Carolina's, a BHO appointed circuit judge finds they have cause and the case gets to the Supremes that in a 5-4 or 6-3 decision find that the state is liable for costs and must pay. The only thing that the gun allowing state can do is ban handguns also, thus any more crimes committed will be by "illegal" weapons, here we see the end of the 2nd amendment, not through legislation, or amendment, but by the courts. All the while weak politicians can claim they had nothing to do with it and harumph about how they will do something.

The use of the courts to legislate is probably the scariest thing for me, what are you going to say when the courts force DOMA states to accept marriage licences from pro gay states? Probably nothing, like most Americans were lemmings and concerned about how were going to get that big screen T.V. than the future of our country or children.

Time will tell but it's looking more and more like the tell is the U.S. will be France in 20 years

Steve, Becom... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

Steve,

Becoming president is always a hard struggle. So congratulations are always in order. You can respect your opposition but then work hard to ensure their defeat. Like Romel vs. Montgomery.

We have had good ones and bad ones.
BHO will govern in 79 days it is then we will be able to start to measure his true content of character.

Sorry if I am not overly impressed I come from the West Indies and I seen too many first that have almost always made their countries last.

Steve,I expect the... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Steve,

I expect the "Looks Like An Assault Weapons" ban will be passed within the first 100 hours. Another one likely to be coming soon is the national 55 MPH speed limit along with the repeal of no child left behind. We can also expect a lot of Federal hate crime legislation to be passed amid at locking up more white men.

Republican politi... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:
Republican politicians for too long have been spectacularly inept in communicating their ideas, principles and positions. They've been unconscionably silent in defending their own. They shouldn't then be surprised when they get their hindquarters handed to them.

It seems that when Dem where in the minority they were able to effectively block legislation. It time to see which of these guys can start to stand up for conservative beliefs. If none do then it is time to find their replacement. (I wonder if they will put Republicans on committees like they demand that Republicans do in the 90's , mmm nope)

I know that everyone wants ... (Below threshold)
Mike:

I know that everyone wants to vent right now, and that's OK. But history actually gives us great hope. Remember the first "hope" and "change" president, Bill Clinton? Remember his first 100 days, guaranteed to bring about the most sweeping positive government reforms since FDR? And what did he accomplish, exactly? 1) His bloated "stimulus package" that was later shot down by Congress, and 2) streamlining gays into the military. Not exactly an outstanding start.

Conservatives in Congress managed not only to kill Clinton's pork-laden stimulus bill, but also managed, while the minority in both houses of Congress, to kill socialized medicine. The effectiveness of the current Senate Republicans has been encouraging, and without that 60 seat majority, the Democrats are still at their mercy. Also consider that Lieberman will probably be stripped of his tenure and committee chairmanship as punishment for supporting McCain, which means that he will now caucus with Republicans.

Conservatives not only have talk radio, we have Fox News (America's most watched) and a solid online presence. We have blogs and YouTube. We can get the truth out and hold Democrats accountable like never before.

Finally, the people who will ultimately punish Obama for a dismal performance will not be solid conservatives or partisan Republicans. Instead, they will be the Peggy Josephs of the country. Not Peggy personally of course; she is black so there is probably 100% chance that she will always vote Democrat no matter what. But she represents a good chunk of Americans, millions of them, who bought into the Big Rock Candy Mountains promises of the Democrats, and who will be left scratching their heads and staring at their empty wallets after their gas goes to $4 then $5 then $6 a gallon, and the energy bill for their two bedroom apartment just skyrocketed to $300 a month.

My personal hope and reques... (Below threshold)
Dee:

My personal hope and request to President-elect Obama is that he stays away from fellow Senators as cabinet choices... particularly Senator Kerry, who would be an equivalent disaster at Sec. of State as Joe Biden will prove to be as VP.

That's not change to believe in... it's the same old beltway thinking... go for the younger folks who are tough and smart -- Susan Rice/Samantha Powers.

After Bill and Hillary had ... (Below threshold)
Travis:

After Bill and Hillary had their socialized medicine plan shot down, the head of the senate armed forces committee was quoted as saying that the US could have 1.) the best military in the world OR 2.) Socialized medicine, but NOT BOTH. Does this ring any bells for anybody? Who said it, and is he still in the senate? Is it possible that this is still the prevailing thought in congress?

The clock is ticking. Obama... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

The clock is ticking. Obama will soon learn that leadership is more then just words. ww

Within the first 200 days w... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:

Within the first 200 days will be the generated crisis that Biden spoke about.

Yours and the Republican mi... (Below threshold)
Parthenon:

Yours and the Republican minority's opposition is welcome and necessary to the functioning of a responsible republic. May the Democrats not govern as the Republicans from '00-'06.

I hope to God my following ... (Below threshold)
Paul_In_Houston:

I hope to God my following fear is groudless...

On election day, the Ace of Spades website posted a picture of two Iraqi women, with purple-stained fingers showing they had voted in an election.

It was a "Get Out The Vote" message, noting that whatever hardships or inconveniences YOU may experience by voting, "These women literally risked their lives to vote".

My first reaction to that was, "And THE ONE can hardly wait to sell them out".

One of my biggest worries about Obama is that his rhetoric on Iraq, and rumored comments about Israel, show an almost casual willingness to sell out allies when convenient.

A commenter on another blog asked, "Who appointed us to be their guardians? Why is it America's job to make sure they are safe?"

I feel the answer is we'd rather not have the entire world as a nuclear-armed camp, based on the idea that the more countries that have these things, the greater the likelihood that some will eventually be used.

Our alliances with these countries, to protect them, are not out of the goodness of our heart, but for what we see as our own best interests. Sell one out, and you can bet the others will sure take notice.

It seemed that commenter was advocating, "To hell with them, let them take care of themselves!"

Well, the problem there is they might do exactly that, and we might not be too thrilled with the results.

If countries under threat (Taiwan, maybe South Korea, even Japan) feel reason to believe that our word is no longer any good, they'll almost certainly feel the need for self-sufficiency in nuclear arms as the only real deterrent to someone like China. And note, those countries mentioned ALL have the necessary economic, industrial and technical wherewithal to go nuclear. All they need do is make the decision.

Others, in the Middle East will want them to deter Iran. How about Saudi Arabia and Egypt? Maybe Libya decides that abandoning their efforts was a mistake. THOSE countries may lack the technology, but they can certainly afford to finance it.

It could just go on and on.

THAT, I feel, would be a very likely result of us deciding to just disengage ourselves from these countries.

We've tried successfully, and for a long time, to convince others that they did not need them, because WE would provide the protection of a nuclear umbrella.

When they decide we cannot be relied on, the whole thing unravels.

If that commenter gets his wish, and they take care of themselves, it could get real interesting for us as well.

Seeing that we also reside on the same planet, I think it almost impossible we would remain unaffected.

So, standing up for our allies is not merely a nice thing to do; it makes the hardest kind of common sense.

Simply put, we protect others in order to protect ourselves. Abandoning them, selling them out, would be an unbelievably short-sighted (as in STUPID) thing to do, and would hurt us more in the long run. No one would trust an agreement with us; and why should they, given such a record?

Instead of being worth anything, our word would only be noise.

And that would be tragic, because WE set its' value, by our actions.


I voted against him, not fo... (Below threshold)
rls:

I voted against him, not for McCain, and I don't think he is in the least qualified to lead this country in a time of war and financial meltdown. That being said, he is the POTUS elect. I don't have a party ID, but I am part and parcel of the loyal opposition.

It is imperative that the opposition caucus stays together....super majority has not been attained and much of this socialist agenda can be blocked. Problem is going to be "compromising", the "go along to get along" mentality. Just as one cannot be just a little bit pregnant, you can't put a teaspoonful of dirt in a bucket of water and have clean water. An ounce of socialism is too much and we're already dealing with a couple of gallons today.

Everyone needs to be on their Reps and Senators on every bill. Let your wishes be known. Although I have Kit Bond here in MO, my Rep is Cleaver. I've bookmarked Bond's web page and will be burning the internets up.

Yours and the Republican... (Below threshold)
rls:

Yours and the Republican minority's opposition is welcome and necessary to the functioning of a responsible republic. May the Democrats not govern as the Republicans from '00-'06.

Amen to that. The red ink has run through the veins of every one of them.

Conservatives the next batt... (Below threshold)
Vegas Vic:

Conservatives the next battle starts today.

we shall not kneel to the Media Messiah!

I have looked at each stat... (Below threshold)
Doctor B:

I have looked at each states' total votes. The electoral college was significant, but the total votes in most states were actually fairly close. Hard to say conservatism/republicans are dead with those numbers. Also, almost all local ballot questions with strong conservative values won handily.

This is hard to say, because I stand firmly against Obama's warped ideas for this country. Today I actually felt a little pride for the black community and America as a whole seeing how far we have come.

I too feel proud as a cou... (Below threshold)
mf:

I too feel proud as a country of where we have come.

I think this means we no longer need Affirmative Action, right?




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