Archive for Republicans

Conservatism is a Winning Strategy—Except in Elections

That seemed to be the message from this extended call to Rush Limbaugh yesterday:

RUSH: Here’s Ian in Fort Myers, Florida. It’s great to have you on the program, sir. Hello.

CALLER: Awesome. I appreciate it, Rush.

RUSH: Thank you, sir.

CALLER: First of all, I just want to let you know that I truly appreciate your perspective and all the ideas you share every time. I’m gonna do my best to try to articulate the point I was making to the screener. With regard to the Koch brothers article and just the message there that they’re trying to communicate, I just think the Republican Party is struggling to connect with the average person.

RUSH: Now, wait. Before you continue, I just want to make sure that we identify them. This is Charles Koch. The Koch brothers are Charles and David. There are two other Koch brothers that are not part of “the Koch brothers” as the Democrats use them.

CALLER: Sure.

I highlighted the caller’s point, and will trim the excess verbiage to try to keep it short. His inarticulateness and Rush’s deafness made for some tough listening.

CALLER: [...] I think when it comes to trying to persuade people about who they want to vote for and who they want running the country, to go out there and tell them that they need to distance themselves from the government, most people are afraid of that, in the masses at least. I mean, you’ve gotta understand, these people follow the advice of these progressives for the last 40, 50 years –

RUSH: No, I agree with you. I think it’s a scary thing for a lot of people to think of the government not being involved in their lives, particularly single women.

Okay, well, let’s take this down to the basic level. Do you have any kids?

CALLER: Not yet.

RUSH: Not yet. How old are you?

CALLER: Thirty-three.

RUSH: Thirty-three. Well, let’s pretend for a moment that you have a son who is 12 or 13, maybe 15, just on the verge of getting a driver’s license and a car. Let’s also, as part of our hypothetical, let’s stipulate that you and your wife have spoiled your son. Your son is way too dependent on you, and you are worried that he hasn’t learned and isn’t interested in learning how to take care of himself.

CALLER: Sure.

RUSH: What would you do?

CALLER: Well –

RUSH: The reason I ask is because you just said we can’t confront these people with the idea that they’ve got to take control of their own lives.

Again, cutting:

RUSH: Well, now, wait a second. See, this is where I kind of have a differing opinion from yours. Why is it that people today are immune from lessons in life? Why are people today somehow, “We can’t talk about taking care of yourself with this group. We can’t talk about providing for yourself. We can’t talk about making your life your own.” Why? What is it about this group that that so scares them? My point is, you would not raise your children that way.

If you were running for office, let’s forget that you’ve got a kid that’s gone off the rails and he’s dependent. You’re running for office, you want to reach these people. Okay, you’ve said we can’t make ‘em feel alone. We can’t humiliate ‘em. We can’t tell ‘em we’re gonna take things away from ‘em but we still want ‘em to vote for us. So what would you do? What would be your pitch?

CALLER: I don’t think there needs to be as strong of a pitch like you’re assuming to get people to vote for the person that they’re confident in. I don’t think Obama had a super strong pitch when he first won. He was just somewhat of a likable person. And even though these ideas that you share on a daily basis are pretty much the gospel to get yourself to a level in society that –

RUSH: I disagree with you. I think Obama did have a pitch, and it was he was gonna take care of you, and he was gonna fix everything that was wrong. And he personally was gonna guarantee you that things are gonna be okay. And he personally was gonna guarantee that the country be loved again. And he personally was gonna do all these wonderful things.

And, finally, Rush concluded:

RUSH: I can tell you that this radio audience is filled with converts, people that used to be dependent liberal Democrats who now listen to this program. You think that might not be possible because of the way they’re being approached because I make them afraid or feel vulnerable or whatever. But nobody that I know of anywhere is demanding that people be left alone.

That is not what “self-reliance” and “individuality” mean. It doesn’t mean alone. It doesn’t mean with no help. It doesn’t mean with no assistance. What it means is, “Be yourself, find out what you love, find out what you really want to do, and go do it. And don’t depend on people who don’t have your best interests at heart,” i.e., Democrats and the government.

If we’ve gotten to the point where we are literally destroying people’s futures by creating this dependency and then we can’t wean them off of it because that’s gonna make them vulnerable, then it’s not just that we’re gonna go to the grave never winning an election; we’re gonna go to the grave with the country never recovering. That, for me, isn’t an option. Tough love. You may think that’s too direct and so forth.

But I’m telling you, the question I asked you about how you would take care of somebody in your immediate orb that you feared was ruining their life is relevant here. If you love people, if you love the country, if you believe that everybody in the country contributes to making it great — if you love everybody and you want the best for them and if you know how they can achieve the best for them — you can’t be afraid to tell them.

As Rush said at CPAC five years ago:

I want to tell you who conservatives are. We conservatives have not done a good enough job of just laying out basically who we are because we make the mistake of assuming people know. What they know is largely incorrect based on the way we are portrayed in pop culture, in the Drive-By Media, by the Democrat Party. Let me tell you who we conservatives are: we love people. When we look out over the United States of America, when we are anywhere, when we see a group of people, such as this or anywhere, we see Americans. We see human beings. We don’t see groups. We don’t see victims. We don’t see people we want to exploit. What we see — what we see is potential. We do not look out across the country and see the average American, the person that makes this country work. We do not see that person with contempt. We don’t think that person doesn’t have what it takes. We believe that person can be the best he or she wants to be if certain things are just removed from their path like onerous taxes, regulations and too much government.

It’s up for debate if this is a winning message. But it’s the only message conservatives have. Liberals own the other side, the argument that you need government to complete you (which is appealing to some, repugnant to others). Where conservatives can win is if they persuade people that realizing their potential not only benefits them, it benefits that country. With ever greater numbers leaving the job market and going on aid, the liberal siren song sounds sweeter and sweeter. Until the ship capsizes (like Guam) from too many people rushing to one side to listen.

But as appealing as the conservative message is to me on its own, sometimes you win elections by pointing out the shortcomings on the other side.

ObamaCare.

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The Legislation Was a Success, The Nation Died

Aggie and I have made no secret of our contempt for ObamaCare, for its namesake, for the nimrods and charlatans who lied, cheated, and stole to make the damned thing the law of the land.

Goodness knows, others have found out to their dismay.

Here’s one:

We were always happy with our health care coverage. My husband and I have been on the same plan since 1972, when my husband graduated from vet school. We liked our plan and wanted to keep it – it provided us excellent coverage and served our needs perfectly. Not anymore. Thanks to Obamacare, our happy relationship with our health insurance ended in November 2012 after 40 years. That’s when we received notification that our health insurance plan would cease to exist as of Dec. 31, 2013…Now that our original insurance is gone, we have poorer quality supplemental coverage at a higher cost. Some of the prescriptions our previous policy paid for are now “disallowed” – if we want to continue taking them, it’s on our nickel completely. One of my prescriptions cost me twice the amount out-of-pocket than under our old plan. The agent who helped us transition to the replacement plan calculated that we’ll pay more than $10,000 per year…Such are the results of the badly-misnamed Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Protecting patients from what? Caring by canceling our insurance and worsening our coverage? And affordable? Hardly! … The whole law – from its name to its effects – is one bad joke. I just wish the punch line was funny.

Yeah, yeah, take a number. Everyone’s got a story.

Now, here’s a story:

Democrats, who plan to run against Republicans this year by focusing on income inequality, may have their work cut out for them after a normally friendly major union issued a report warning Obamacare will make income inequality worse.

The document, titled “The Irony of ObamaCare: Making Inequality Worse,” has been posted online by Unite Here and is set to be sent to Capitol Hill, according to Ralston Reports.

Unite Here, which calls itself “the first international union to endorse Barack Obama for President in 2008,” says it supports the intent of the Affordable Care Act, but charges it will transfer a billion dollars in wealth to insurance companies, make the playing field in the market uneven, force employers convert more jobs to part time, and cause pay cuts.

“Ironically, the administration’s own signature healthcare victory poses one of the most immediate challenges to redressing inequality,” the report says.

You say ironically, I say amusingly (even hysterically). But why quibble?

Republicans plan to hammer Democrats on their support of the Affordable Care Act during this year’s midterm elections. Republicans are seen as having a chance to not only increase their majority in the House of Representatives, but also gain control of the Senate.

Indeed. If any Republican syas a word about anything but ObamaCare during the campaign, he should be cast out of an airplane into the sea.

Here’s why:

The Obama administration has, for months now, been peddling nice-sounding numbers as to how many people are gaining health coverage due to Obamacare. But their numbers have been inflated on two fronts. First, not everyone who has “selected a marketplace plan” under Obamacare has actually paid the required premiums, payment being required to actually gain coverage. Second, only a fraction of people on the exchanges were previously uninsured.

But if not every “sign-up” has paid up, what does that mean?

Of the Obamacare sign-ups, only 27 percent had been previously uninsured in 2013. And of the 27 percent, nearly half had yet to pay a premium.

Among those that the administration is touting as sign-ups, only 14 percent are previously uninsured enrollees: approximately 472,000 people as of February 1.

So, six million people (so far), the combined population of Los Angeles and Houston, have had their plans canceled, replaced with more expensive ones offering pediatric dental for grandparents, for the benefit of the population of Sacramento. If Republicans don’t eff this up, they should win by similar margins.

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Speaking Truth to Abuse of Power

Today, for the first time in my adult life, I am proud of John Boehner and House Republicans:

House Speaker John Boehner said it would be difficult to pass an immigration bill because fellow Republicans don’t trust President Barack Obama to implement the law, a position that shrinks chances for House action this year.

“There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws,” Boehner told reporters in Washington today. “And it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes.”

Finally!

Of course, it only took the abuses of ObamaCare—and Obama’s own words—to get the message across. Still, the message is now clear: “There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws.” There’s no doubt in the administration: they are in open revolt against our laws.

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Everything is Spinning Out of Control! Except in Wisconsin

OMG! Chris Christie in the soup! Bob McDonnell under indictment! Dinesh D’Souza primed for arraignment! Either the Republican Party is going to the dogs, or Eric Holder has lost his mind.

Is there no sanity in modern politics?

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin is scheduled to go on trial Monday in federal court here, the highest-profile defendant to face a jury on criminal charges for alleged corruption in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Mr. Nagin, 57 years old, rose to national prominence as levee failures flooded roughly 80% of the city when Katrina made landfall in August 2005. And while his trial focuses on a narrow series of business deals and city contracts, its backdrop is the massive rebuilding effort spurred by billions of federal dollars and the drive by New Orleanians to build a city free of the corruption and mismanaged government that festered for decades.

Where does George Bush go to get his reputation back? Something was rotten in Chocolate City.

Meanwhile, across the country…

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has completely changed the “state of the state” and Wisconsinites are reaping the benefits.

In 2011, Wisconsin had a whopping deficit of $3.6 billion dollars. But a cooperate tax cut and collective bargaining reforms invigorated the state economy. Now, the state is boasting a $911 million surplus, credited to “good stewardship of the taxpayers’ money.”

And what will Walker do? Buy his wife a $19,000 dress? Increase his paycheck? Go on vacation?

Nope. He’s proposing $800 million in tax cuts.

“What do you do with a surplus? Give it back to the people who earned it. It’s your money,” Walker said.

Hey, isn’t it time to indict another Republican? Get the lead out, Eric the Red, they’re not going to indict themselves.

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Just One More Lie

If you would allow us just one more whopper of a lie, pretty please?

Republican Rep. Tom Price hit President Barack Obama for not listening to new ideas on health care, saying his calls to the White House have gone unanswered.

“We’ve actually called him. We’ve contacted the White House repeatedly. Silence. It’s crickets,” Price (R-Ga.) said Monday on Fox News’s “Fox & Friends.”

Earlier this month, Obama slammed Republican critics of the Affordable Care Act for not coming up with solutions asking people to bring him good ideas, but he said will not repeal the law.

Price, a physician and vice chairman of the House Budget Committee, spoke about his own proposal, which would actually repeal Obamacare. Price said his plan puts patients, families and doctors in control of their coverage, but continued to criticize the White House.

“The fact is they don’t want to talk about the quality of health care, accessibility to health care, affordability of health care. What they want is the government to control health care,” Price said.

Republicans were shut out when the law was written, and they’ve been shut out from any of Obama’s imperial whims of enforcement or suspension. For him to pretend otherwise is, well, just another lie.

He is a serial prevaricator, who lies from the moment he wakes up to the moment he goes to bed. He lies pathologically, obsessively. His lies can be multiple and contradictory; he no more remembers them after he says them than he means them as he says them. If he were locked up in a loony bin, he’d be unremarkable; as he lives in the White House and wields the power of the federal government (IRS, NSA, etc.), he is a little more dangerous.

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Left Wing Civility Watch

Isn’t it terrific how many women and minorities are running for political office?

Evidently not:

New Hampshire Democrats were quick to attack Republican State Representative Marilinda Garcia once she made her intention to seek the her party’s nomination for the second congressional district seat official. Garcia announced her candidacy via a press release on Monday morning; she joins former Republican State Senator Gary Lambert in the race to take on Democratic Congresswoman Anne Kuster.

Within moments of her announcement, prominent Democratic State Rep. Peter Sullivan attacked Garcia on Twitter using sexist language and imagery. Sullivan compared the three-term State Representative, who holds a Master’s degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, to reality television celebrity Kim Kardashian. He went on to refer to her as “[Republican State Rep.] Al Baldasarro [sic] in stiletto heels” and “a lightweight.”

You wish!

It appears she doesn’t wear stiletto heels, so that must be a gratuitous cultural stereotype.

What do you expect from a corrupt drunkard named Sullivan?

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Sauce for the Goose?

Many of us frustrated by the unfair treatment of Israel by the Arab occupiers of their lands lash out angrily, and call for Israel to treat the AOTLs as the AOTLs treat them. Shell their kindergartens; stone their moms driving the kids to soccer practice; describe them as vermin, subhuman; glorify your mass-murderers as heros and heroines; board their buses and detonate bombs packed with nails and ball bearings—sounds like fun, no?

But no, we’re better than that. The Israelis are better than that.

Let’s hope the Republicans are not better than that:

Today’s Democrats have grown up in the Saul Alinsky tradition, and on Thursday they proved it with a partisan vote to break the Senate filibuster rule for confirming judges and executive-branch nominees. The new rules will empower the party’s liberals for as long as they control the White House and Senate, but they will also set a precedent for conservatives to exploit in the future.

[T]he great irony is that Democrats voted to end the practice of judicial filibusters that they pioneered when George W. Bush was President. As the minority from 2003-2005, Democrats demanded 60 votes to confirm executive-branch nominees like John Bolton for U.N. Ambassador.

The move shows how foolish Republicans like John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Orrin Hatch were to worry that if they broke the filibuster, Democrats would then do it too. Democrats did it anyway. The only way to deter bloody-minded Democratic behavior is to treat Democrats as they treat Republicans. Democrats sicced special prosecutors on GOP Presidents for years, but they gave up the independent-counsel statute only after Ken Starr investigated Bill Clinton.

The immediate result of Harry Reid’s power play will be that President Obama has a freer hand to pursue his agenda through regulation and the courts. Democrats will now rush to pack the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in particular, adding three new judges over GOP objection to a court that is already underworked.

The next GOP President should line up Federalist Society alumni for judicial nominations like planes waiting to take off at O’Hare International Airport. Imagine two or three more Clarence Thomases on the High Court confirmed with 51 Senate votes. Planned Parenthood can send its regrets to Harry Reid.

ObamaCare would never have passed if Mr. Franken hadn’t stolen the Minnesota recount and prosecutors hadn’t hidden exculpatory evidence to convict Alaska Republican Ted Stevens on false ethics charges. But liberals are showing that they’ll only need 51 votes, not 60, to pass the next ObamaCare.

Conservatives have more of a stake than liberals do in the legislative filibuster as a check on the political passions of the moment. But the Democrats who rewrote Senate rules on Thursday should also understand that they have now opened the door to repeal ObamaCare with only 51 votes.

It is true that sometimes the only way you can change an unwanted, antisocial behavior is to subject the violator to that same behavior. In which case a future Republican administration should not “line up Federalist Society alumni for judicial nominations like planes waiting to take off at O’Hare International Airport”, but members of the Aryan Brotherhood. Hey, if you’re going to be a bear, be a grizzly. Democrats can’t tell Federalist Society members from neo-Nazis anyway.

And I leave Israel with this suggestion: sneak into an Arab home and butcher everyone there—women, children, infants. Leave blood-spattered toys and dolls strewn around the crime scene. If you don’t want more Fogels, do unto the AOTLs as they did unto you. Don’t let faith or scruples muddle your thinking.

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Do You Throw a Life Jacket to a Drowning Man?

If that man is Charles Manson?

How about David Berkowitz (Son of Sam)? Or Mark David Chapman (John Lennon’s assassin)? Or John Hinkley (Reagan’s would be assassin)?

Now, would you throw a life line to the Democrat Party if they were being dragged to the inky depths by the anchor of EdselCare?

No, no, no, no, and kiss my a…dam’s apple, in that order. I agree.

Now, would you throw the Constitutional Affordable Care Act (CACA) a lifesaver if you stood to get the blame for its miserable failure, despite the fact that your fingerprints aren’t anywhere on it? I still wouldn’t, and here’s why.

First, the hypothetical: if a critical mass of Democrats wants to stuff CACA for a year, wipe it off the books until it’s ready to drop, should Republicans go along? “Delay” was the full-throated cry of the Republican Party last month when Ted Cruz was calling “defund”; why not now? Democrats would label the Republicans flip-floppers of the worst kind, seeking to hurt “folks” for the sole purpose of making political points. The media would back them up—as the media always do—and the truth would be drowned out. The a-holes responsible for CACA would be made out as defenders of the middle class, while Republicans would look like mean-spirited losers.

So, why not go along to get along? Why not hold their noses and help the Democrats out of the whirlpool of legislative overreach? Because CACA is still bad law. The website will be the least of it, the thin end of the wedge. Canceled plans, more expensive plans, lost doctors and hospitals, government inefficiency, nationalizing an entire industry—obviously, one could go on.

The issue isn’t delay; it’s repeal. This is the time for counteroffensive. Don’t go along with the Democrats, hit back. Insist that a bad law, an unpopular law, be taken off the books entirely. Demand that your market-based alternatives be implemented instead. The overwhelming majority of people were personally happy with what they had before; those of them that supported change were lied to about how bad things were. They were dumb then; they (might) know better now.

Don’t fall into line behind the lying Democrats; don’t stonewall them. Offer an alternative now that the country is dying for one. Be a party that stands for something. Who knows, you may even lead.

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Lies, Damned Lies, and Obama’s Promises

As Otter says in Animal House, EdselCare “absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture”.

And here’s just the one to do it:

Senator Ron Johnson (R., Wis.) announced today that next week he will file legislation that will allow Americans to keep their previous health-insurance plans, as President Obama promised. The proposed bill, entitled the “If you Like Your Health Plan, You Can Keep It Act,” would, according to Johnson’s statement amend the Affordable Care Act “to make Obamacare live up to the promises of the politicians who sold the plan to the American public.”

From the press release:

One of the most important promises made by President Obama and Democrat congressional leadership to promote the Affordable Care Act was that Americans who were satisfied with their health plans could keep them. That promise has been broken. More than a million Americans have been notified that the plans they like with the coverage they have chosen have been canceled. Millions more Americans will have the plans of their choice canceled in months to come.

President Obama promised multiple times in the years between the passage of the Affordable Care Act and its rollout that “if you like your health plan, you can keep it.” However, as Johnson notes, hundreds of thousands of people have been forced off of their plans because insurance providers are unable to offer the plans under the new regulations.

He’s right, of course, but that’s not the point. Since when has this president ever, ever been held to account? A puppy may learn house-training by being forced to face its own poo, but Barack Obama hasn’t. He’s still leaving piles of stink all over the place. EdselCare is just the biggest and stinkiest (until we see immigration “reform”).

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You Talking to Me? You Talking to ME?

Heaven forfend:

President Barack Obama is ready to talk even on Republicans’ terms, he insisted Tuesday, so long as Congress acts first to end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling — even for a short period.

At a news conference, Obama indicated Republicans could essentially set the agenda for budget negotiations, but only if Congress agrees first to a short-term spending plan to fund the government and to raise the federal borrowing limit to avoid a possible first-ever U.S. default next week.

“I will talk about anything,” the president said.

House Speaker John Boehner, speaking Tuesday afternoon after what he called a “pleasant” but ineffectual phone call with Obama, promptly rejected the president’s comments as nothing new.

“What the president said today was if there’s unconditional surrender by Republicans, he’ll sit down and talk to us,” Boehner said. “That’s not the way our government works.”

I get the president’s reluctance to negotiate, I really do. House Republicans stand between him and an American National Health Service, between him and an imperial presidency. I got your coequal branch right here, he says, grabbing his crotch.

But it was not always so. President Obama has negotiated with Iran. He’s negotiated with the Taliban. He’s negotiated with Russia and Syria—simultaneously. He wants to negotiate with North Korea.

And then there are those to whom he just submits:

Aggie’s right. President Obama and the Democrat-Media Complex just don’t like Republicans. I think they’d talk to the Nazi Party before they’d talk to the Tea Party.

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President Obama: Bend Over

You can say that again, Barack:

During the course of my presidency, I have bent over backwards to work with the Republican party and have purposely kept my rhetoric down.

I don’t think that’s what the expression means, sir, or is remotely appropriate.

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GOP in a Cup

Not to belabor the health care theme so early in the day, but this is the perfect companion piece to the one below:

In remarks at the White House last month, President Obama claimed that if Republicans “had some better ideas” on health care, he was “happy to hear them. But I haven’t heard any so far.” [With those ears? Ed.]

Many congressional Republicans, such as Oklahoma’s Sen. Tom Coburn and Wyoming’s Sen. Mike Enzi, have long advocated making health insurance completely portable so workers can take their plans with them from job to job. This means giving individuals who buy coverage for themselves a tax advantage similar to the one that employers enjoy when they cover employees. That change also could make coverage more affordable for the self-employed and even universal for all workers.

In the House, Republicans such as Texas Rep. Sam Johnson and Louisiana’s Charles Boustany (a cardiovascular surgeon), want to allow smaller companies to pool their risk to get the same discounts from insurance carriers that bigger companies do. Others, including Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, want to spark increased competition by allowing health-insurance policies to be sold across state lines, as are auto insurance policies.

ObamaCare reduced the amount families can save tax free for medical expenses; the House Republican Study Committee wants to raise the amount. Paired with health-savings accounts, this can put quality health care within the reach of many more families.

Oh, there’s so much more! But it’s behind a pay wall at the Wall Street Journal. With the sequester, how is he going to hear more ideas? I suppose he could just ask one of the Congressional Republicans.

Nah. Who’m I kidding?

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