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NewChief
09-10-2004, 10:04 AM
http://salon.com/opinion/feature/2004/09/10/conservatives/print.html

Why conservatives must not vote for Bush
A Reaganite argues that Bush is a dangerous, profligate, moralizing radical -- and that his reelection would be catastrophic both for the right and for America.

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By Doug Bandow



Sept. 10, 2004 | George W. Bush presents conservatives with a fundamental challenge: Do they believe in anything other than power? Are they serious about their rhetoric on limited, constitutionally restrained government?

Bush appears to have remained strong in the presidential race by rallying conservatives behind him. In his convention acceptance speech he derided Sen. John Kerry's claim to represent "conservative values" and seized the mantle of promoting liberty at home and abroad.

Indeed, many conservatives react like the proverbial vampire at the sight of a cross when they consider casting a ballot for Kerry. Tom Nugent, a National Review Online contributing editor, wrote: "The last thing the Republican party needs is the reckless suggestion that conservatives vote Democratic." That is mild, however, compared with the American Conservative Union's mass e-mail solicitation headlined "Why Do Terrorists Want Kerry to Win?"

Republican partisans have little choice but to focus on Kerry's perceived vulnerabilities. A few high-octane speeches cannot disguise the catastrophic failure of the Bush administration in both its domestic and its foreign policies. Mounting deficits are likely to force eventual tax increases, reversing perhaps President Bush's most important economic legacy. The administration's foreign policy is an even greater shambles, with Iraq aflame and America increasingly reviled by friend and foe alike.

Quite simply, the president, despite his well-choreographed posturing, does not represent traditional conservatism -- a commitment to individual liberty, limited government, constitutional restraint and fiscal responsibility. Rather, Bush routinely puts power before principle. As Chris Vance, chairman of Washington state's Republican Party, told the Economist: "George Bush's record is not that conservative ... There's something there for everyone."

Even Bush's conservative sycophants have trouble finding policies to praise. Certainly it cannot be federal spending. In 2000 candidate Bush complained that Al Gore would "throw the budget out of balance." But the big-spending Bush administration and GOP Congress have turned a 10-year budget surplus once estimated at $5.6 trillion into an estimated $5 trillion flood of red ink. This year's deficit will run about $445 billion, according to the Office of Management and Budget.

Brian Riedl of the Heritage Foundation reports that in 2003 "government spending exceeded $20,000 per household for the first time since World War II." There are few programs at which the president has not thrown money; he has supported massive farm subsidies, an expensive new Medicare drug benefit, thousands of pork barrel projects, dubious homeland security grants, an expansion of Bill Clinton's AmeriCorps, and new foreign aid programs. What's more, says former conservative Republican Rep. Bob Barr, "in the midst of the war on terror and $500 billion deficits, [Bush] proposes sending spaceships to Mars."

Unfortunately, even the official spending numbers understate the problem. The Bush administration is pushing military proposals that may understate defense costs by $500 billion over the coming decade. The administration lied about the likely cost of the Medicare drug benefit, which added $8 trillion in unfunded liabilities. Moreover, it declined to include in budget proposals any numbers for maintaining the occupation of Iraq or underwriting the war on terrorism. Those funds will come through supplemental appropriation bills. Never mind that Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz had promised that reconstruction of Iraq could be paid for with Iraqi resources. (Yet, despite the Bush administration's generosity, it could not find the money to expeditiously equip U.S. soldiers in Iraq with body armor.)

Nor would a second Bush term likely be different. Nothing in his convention speech suggested a new willingness by Bush to make tough choices. Indeed, when discussing their domestic agenda, administration officials complained that the media had ignored their proposals, such as $250 million in aid to community colleges for job training. Not mentioned was that Washington runs a plethora of job training programs, few of which have demonstrated lasting benefits. This is the hallmark of a limited-government conservative?

Jonah Goldberg, a regular contributor to NRO, one of Bush's strongest bastions, complains that the president has "asked for a major new commitment by the federal government to insert itself into everything from religious charities to marriage counseling." Indeed, Bush seems to aspire to be America's moralizer in chief. He would use the federal government to micromanage education, combat the scourge of steroid use, push drug testing of high school kids, encourage character education, promote marriage, hire mentors for children of prisoners and provide coaches for ex-cons.

Conservative pundit Andrew Sullivan worries that Bush "is fusing Big Government liberalism with religious right moralism. It's the nanny state with more cash."

Yet some conservatives celebrate this approach. Kevin Fobbs and Lisa Sarrach of the National Urban Policy Action Council opine that Bush is "a strong leader, a comforter in chief." A comforter in chief?

Why, then, would any conservative believer in limited, constitutional government vote for Bush? It is fear of the thought of a President John Kerry.

Bobby Eberle of the conservative Web site GOPUSA warns, "One can only imagine the budgets that would be submitted by Kerry." President Bush has made the same point, repeatedly charging that Kerry "has promised about $2 trillion of new spending thus far." Maybe that is true, though the cost of Bush's actual performance would be hard to beat. After all, the president initiated a huge increase in the welfare state with his Medicare drug benefit bill. Veronique de Rugy of the American Enterprise Institute points out that, in sharp contrast to Presidents Reagan and Clinton, "Bush has cut none of the [federal] agencies' budgets during his first term."

Moreover, whatever the personal preferences of a President Kerry, he could spend only whatever legislators allowed, so assuming that the GOP maintains its control over Congress, outlays almost certainly would rise less than if Bush won reelection. History convincingly demonstrates that divided government delivers less spending than unitary control. Give either party complete control of government and the treasury vaults quickly empty. Share power between the parties and, out of principle or malice, they check each other. The American Conservative Union's Don Devine says bluntly: "A rational conservative would calculate a vote for Kerry as likely to do less damage" fiscally.

Maybe so, respond some conservatives, but how about the Bush tax cuts? The president tells campaign audiences: "They're going to raise your taxes; we're not." But even here the Bush record is not secure. Bruce Bartlett of the National Center for Policy Analysis points to the flood of red ink unleashed by the administration and predicts that tax hikes are inevitable irrespective of who is elected in November. That is, Bush's fiscal irresponsibility could cancel out his most important economic success for the GOP.

For some conservatives, the clincher in favor of Bush is the war on terrorism. Kerry, with more war experience than the current president and vice president combined, "resembles Neville Chamberlain," says Nugent. Answering his own hysterical question, "Why do terrorists want Kerry to win?" David Keene of the American Conservative Union says Kerry would submit to terrorists and "lead the free world to a second Munich," only this time with al-Qaida instead of Adolph Hitler.

Yet Bush's foreign policy record is as bad as his domestic scorecard. The administration correctly targeted the Taliban in Afghanistan, but quickly neglected that nation, which is in danger of falling into chaos. The Taliban is resurgent, violence has flared, drug production has burgeoned and elections have been postponed.

Iraq, already in chaos, is no conservative triumph. The endeavor is social engineering on a grand scale, a war of choice launched on erroneous grounds that has turned into a disastrously expensive neocolonial burden.

Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction, contrary to administration claims, and no operational relationship with al-Qaida, contrary to administration insinuations. U.S. officials bungled the occupation, misjudging everything from the financial cost to the troop requirements.

Particularly shocking is the administration's ineptitude with regard to Iraq. Fareed Zakaria writes in Newsweek, "On almost every issue involving postwar Iraq -- troop strength, international support, the credibility of exiles, de-Baathification, handling Ayatollah Ali Sistani -- Washington's assumptions and policies have been wrong. By now most have been reversed, often too late to have much effect. This strange combination of arrogance and incompetence has not only destroyed the hopes for a new Iraq. It has had the much broader effect of turning the United States into an international outlaw in the eyes of much of the world."

Sadly, the Iraq debacle has undercut the fight against terrorism. The International Institute for Strategic Studies in its most recent study warns that the Iraq occupation has spurred recruiting by smaller terrorist groups around the world. And acting CIA Director John McLaughlin worries that terrorists are plotting "something big" against the United States. For a time the Pentagon considered closing its child care center, lest it become the target of an attack. NRO columnist Goldberg observes that the president's contention that the war in Iraq has made America safer "is absurd." Goldberg backs the war for other reasons, but says it was probably "the risky thing in the short run."

Bush -- not even sure himself whether the war on terrorism is winnable -- has been unable to demonstrate how Iraq has reduced the threat of terrorism against America. Instead, he says: "I need four more years to complete the work. There's more work to do to make America a safer place. There's more work to do to make the world a more peaceful place." Alas, there's more work, far more work, to do because of Bush's misguided policies.

A few conservatives are distressed at what Bush has wrought in Iraq. "Crossfire" host Tucker Carlson said recently: "I think it's a total nightmare and disaster, and I'm ashamed that I went against my own instincts in supporting it." William F. Buckley Jr., longtime National Review editor and columnist, wrote: "With the benefit of minute hindsight, Saddam Hussein wasn't the kind of extra-territorial menace that was assumed by the administration one year ago. If I knew then what I know now about what kind of situation we would be in, I would have opposed the war."

And opposed it he should have. The conflict is undermining America's values. As social critic Randolph Bourne long ago observed, "War is the health of the state." Although the Constitution is not a suicide pact, the so-called PATRIOT Act threatens some of the basic civil liberties that make America worth defending. Abu Ghraib has sullied America's image among both friends and enemies.

Still, there obviously are issues important to conservatives on which the candidates differ. On abortion and judicial appointments, for instance, Bush is clearly superior for conservatives. On business regulation Bush is probably better. For this reason Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation worries that "in punishing Bush, they [conservatives opposing him] may end up punishing the country." The administration has also sacrificed economic liberty on issues such as antitrust, telecommunications and trade.

But these differences in practice may matter little. Not much can be done on abortion given current court rulings and the fact that Bush has won approval of few of his most conservative nominees. Republican senators could limit Kerry's choices just as Democratic senators have limited Bush's choices.

Bush's record has been so bad that some of his supporters simply ask, So what? Bush is "a big government conservative," explains commentator Fred Barnes. That means using "what would normally be seen as liberal means -- activist government -- for conservative ends. And they're willing to spend more and increase the size of government in the process."

But this political prostitution is unworthy of venerable conservative principles. Undoubtedly, reducing the reach of government is not easy, and there is no shame in adjusting tactics and even goals to reflect political reality. But to surrender one's principles, to refuse to fight for them, is to put personal ambition before all else.

The final conservative redoubt is Bush's admirable personal life. Alas, other characteristics of his seem less well suited to the presidency. By his own admission he doesn't do nuance and doesn't read. He doesn't appear to reflect on his actions and seems unable to concede even the slightest mistake. Nor is he willing to hold anyone else responsible for anything. It is a damning combination. John Kerry may flip-flop, but at least he realizes that circumstances change and sometimes require changed policies. He doesn't cowardly flee at the first mention of accountability.

Some onetime administration supporters have grown disillusioned. Sullivan observes: "To have humiliated the United States by presenting false and misleading intelligence and then to have allowed something like Abu Ghraib to happen ... is unforgivable. By refusing to hold anyone accountable, the president has also shown he is not really in control. We are at war; and our war leaders have given the enemy their biggest propaganda coup imaginable, while refusing to acknowledge their own palpable errors and misjudgments."

Those who still believe in Bush have tried to play up comparisons with Ronald Reagan, but I knew Reagan and he was no George W. Bush. It's not just that Reagan read widely, thought deeply about issues and wrote prolifically. He really believed in the primacy of individual liberty and of limited, constitutional government.

In his farewell address to the nation on Jan. 11, 1989, Reagan observed: "I wasn't a great communicator, but I communicated great things." Even when politics forced him to give way, everyone knew what he stood for. Bush's biggest problem, in contrast, is not that he is a poor communicator. It is that he has nothing to communicate. Victory over terrorists, yes -- but then what American really disagrees with that goal? Beyond that there is nothing.

"Government should never try to control or dominate the lives of our citizens," Bush says. But you wouldn't know that from his policies. He has expanded government power, increased federal spending, initiated an unnecessary war, engaged in global social engineering and undercut executive accountability. This is a bill of particulars that could be laid on Lyndon Johnson's grave. No wonder "Republicans aren't very enthusiastic about" Bush, says right-wing syndicated columnist Robert Novak.

Although anecdotal evidence of conservative disaffection with Bush is common -- for instance, my Pentagon employee neighbor, a business lobbyist friend, even my retired career Air Force father -- for many the thought of voting for John Kerry remains simply too horrific to contemplate. And this dissatisfaction has yet to show up in polls. Fear of Kerry, more than love of Bush, holds many conservatives behind the GOP.

Yet serious conservatives must fear for the country if Bush is reelected. Is Kerry really likely to initiate more unnecessary wars, threaten more civil liberties and waste more tax dollars? In any case, there are other choices (e.g., the Libertarian Party's Michael Badnarik, the Constitution Party's Michael Peroutka and even Independent Ralph Nader).

Serious conservatives should deny their votes to Bush. "When it comes to choosing a president, results matter," the president says. So true. A Kerry victory would likely be bad for the cause of individual liberty and limited government. But based on the results of his presidency, a Bush victory would be catastrophic. Conservatives should choose principle over power.


- - - - - - - - - - - -

About the writer
Doug Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. He served as a special assistant to President Reagan and was a visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 10:06 AM
Who's Doug Bandow? :shrug:

:spock:

ZZZ

NewChief
09-10-2004, 10:07 AM
Who's Doug Bandow? :shrug:

:spock:

ZZZ

Reading comprehension not your strong suit?

Here is it again:

About the writer
Doug Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. He served as a special assistant to President Reagan and was a visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

Donger
09-10-2004, 10:08 AM
Darn. I guess I can't vote for Bush now.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 10:08 AM
*yawn*

NewChief
09-10-2004, 10:08 AM
Darn. I guess I can't vote for Bush now.

I knew you'd come around. :thumb:

Brock
09-10-2004, 10:09 AM
Right. The real conservatives are voting for the Senator from Taxachusetts.

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 10:09 AM
Reading comprehension not your strong suit?

Here is it again:

I'll repeat my question, WHO the hell is he?

Nobody I've ever heard of; nor 99.9 % of Americans I would suggest.

So, my point is, "Who cares what this nobody has to say?" :)

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 10:10 AM
Right. The real conservatives are voting for the Senator from Taxachusetts.

Yup; that's the only other choice afterall.... ROFL

Cochise
09-10-2004, 10:21 AM
cliff notes plz~

Soupnazi
09-10-2004, 10:41 AM
I'm loving that the same liberals for 4 years have argued that Bush is too conservative to vote for are now left to argue that he's not conservative enough for cons to vote for.

Hilarious that their candidate is so pathetic that they have to reduce a campaign to "Oh yeah, well your guy isn't as close to what you believe as Reagan was!"

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 11:03 AM
cliff notes plz~


Bush isn't a Conservative (duh), so do something that will put someone who is even further from your idealogy in the WH. :rolleyes:

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 11:06 AM
The administration's foreign policy is an even greater shambles, with Iraq aflame and America increasingly reviled by friend and foe alike.


Yeah, this guy is a real Reagan Conservative.....


We have an imposter here me lads.

jAZ
09-10-2004, 11:18 AM
cliff notes plz~
Your party has been hijacked by neo-conservatives and fundamentalist Christians. The party of fiscal reponsibility and smart if agressive foreign policy that Republicans has been sold out to extremists.

Brock
09-10-2004, 11:20 AM
Your party has been hijacked by neo-conservatives and fundamentalist Christians. The party of fiscal reponsibility and smart if agressive foreign policy that Republicans has been sold out to extremists.

Said the UFO abductee.

HC_Chief
09-10-2004, 11:22 AM
All I needed to read was salon.com... knew the rest of the story implicitly ;)

Cochise
09-10-2004, 11:25 AM
Your party has been hijacked by neo-conservatives and fundamentalist Christians. The party of fiscal reponsibility and smart if agressive foreign policy that Republicans has been sold out to extremists.

Sort of like how your party has been hijacked by labor lobbyists, environmentalist wackos, the gay lobby, and is now little more than a patchwork of one-issue voting blocks?

Baby Lee
09-10-2004, 11:34 AM
Cato Scholar says Real Cons Don't Vote Bush
Place your vote for Nader this November and then we'll talk.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 11:35 AM
Sort of like how your party has been hijacked by labor lobbyists, environmentalist wackos, the gay lobby, and is now little more than a patchwork of one-issue voting blocks?


Don't forget the peaceniks, animal rights activists, tort lawyers, feminazis, social elitists (French like people), and probably some others I am forgetting.

Cochise
09-10-2004, 11:37 AM
Don't forget the peaceniks, animal rights activists, tort lawyers, feminazis, social elitists (French like people), and probably some others I am forgetting.

Unemployed hippies with nothing better to do than protest and skip showers.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 11:41 AM
Unemployed hippies with nothing better to do than protest and skip showers.


Oh yeah, I forgot about the welfare leaches of society. Also, the criminal element that would rather have the victim treatment applied to them instead of the villian treatment. As well as your conspiracy theorists (read kooks) who suspect anything and everything in government, yet they support the candidates that are for even bigger government......


This is quite a list we are compiling here.

Cochise
09-10-2004, 11:43 AM
This is quite a list we are compiling here.

Old people who've been scared into thinking that the Republicans want to kick them out in the street and take away their medicare.

The point endures, that the Democratic party is largely dependent on a comglomeration of one-issue voters and has no real identity or core beliefs other than that the other party's beliefs suck.

Taco John
09-10-2004, 11:50 AM
Said the UFO abductee.



When was Pat Buchanon abducted by a UFO?

Brock
09-10-2004, 11:52 AM
When was Pat Buchanon abducted by a UFO?

Pat wasn't abducted, he arrived.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 11:53 AM
Old people who've been scared into thinking that the Republicans want to kick them out in the street and take away their medicare.

We also want them leave them eating dog food.

The point endures, that the Democratic party is largely dependent on a comglomeration of one-issue voters and has no real identity or core beliefs other than that the other party's beliefs suck.


Yep. The only belief they really share is that government is the answer.

KCTitus
09-10-2004, 11:53 AM
Quick question:

If this is a Cato scholar, wouldnt one be able to find this person stating as much on Cato's website?

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 11:57 AM
Quick question:

If this is a Cato scholar, wouldnt one be able to find this person stating as much on Cato's website?

:hmmm:

Nah, maybe he's a Kato scholar....or a Chato scholar....or a Khato scholar....probably just an innocent typo.

That or perhaps he's a FORMER Cato scholar..... :spock:

But why is he FORMER, and being cited as current? This is getting SOOOOO confusing.... :shake:

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 11:58 AM
:hmmm:

Nah, maybe he's a Kato scholar....or a Chato scholar....or a Khato scholar....probably just an innocent typo.

That or perhaps he's a FORMER Cato scholar..... :spock:

But why is he FORMER, and being cited as current? This is getting SOOOOO confusing.... :shake:

Afterall, this IS salon.com, and we all know it to be an objective and non-partisan source....

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 11:59 AM
Pat wasn't abducted, he arrived.


ROFL

KCTitus
09-10-2004, 12:28 PM
Afterall, this IS salon.com, and we all know it to be an objective and non-partisan source....

Well, it's not as good as alien abductee websites, but it's pretty damned close.

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:35 PM
When was Pat Buchanon abducted by a UFO?
I believe he was referring to jAZ post a month ago regarding "facts" presented by Whitley Streiber (noted author of Communion and admitted abductee) on reasons not to vote for Bush.

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:36 PM
Quick question:

If this is a Cato scholar, wouldnt one be able to find this person stating as much on Cato's website?
I think he is a Kato scholar - someone who bought some old beta tapes of the Green Hornet and plans to learn karate from them.

jAZ
09-10-2004, 12:37 PM
Sort of like how your party has been hijacked by labor lobbyists, environmentalist wackos, the gay lobby, and is now little more than a patchwork of one-issue voting blocks?
Your argument is with members of the Hertiage Foundation, the Cato institute and the like.

But the Democratic party has acted more moderately over the last 15 years than anyone wants to give credit for. Why do you think liberals are calling Kerry "Bush Lite"?

Clinton took the middle ground and stood up to the labor lobby with things like NAFTA.

Bush has embraced the extremists and abandonded the principles of conservatism.

Brock
09-10-2004, 12:37 PM
I'm waiting for Art Bell to tell me how to vote.

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 12:40 PM
I think he is a Kato scholar - someone who bought some old beta tapes of the Green Hornet and plans to learn karate from them.

Wonder if he's related to Kalen Kato....or perhaps a recipient of the prestigious and esteemed Kalen Kato Scholarship.....

jAZ
09-10-2004, 12:40 PM
Oh yeah, I forgot about the welfare leaches of society.
Clinton stole a Republican issue when he implented welfare reform.

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:41 PM
Doug Bandow is actually a self-described Libertarian, not a Republican as this article would lead to you believe. He was forced to resign from the Reagan Administration (something the author must have "forgotten" to include in the article). For someone who left so bitter against the Reagan Administration, he sure does still attempt to live off that temporary 8 month position even today.

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:42 PM
Clinton stole a Republican issue when he implented welfare reform.
Wow, SuperClinton forced the House and Senate to vote his way!!!!

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 12:43 PM
Doug Bandow is actually a self-described Libertarian, not a Republican as this article would lead to you believe. He was forced to resign from the Reagan Administration (something the author must have "forgotten" to include in the article). For someone who left so bitter against the Reagan Administration, he sure does still attempt to live off that temporary 8 month position even today.


SsssssssssSSSHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!





Don't confuse us with facts that may have bearing on this honorable man's credibility. :rolleyes:

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 12:43 PM
Clinton stole a Republican issue when he implented welfare reform.


The hell he did. The only reason he implemented it is because of the Republican's Contract with America. Had Clinton not been fearing for his job after the '94 elections the odds he would have signed it are slim.

And had the Republican's not come to power the odds that welfare reform would have even made it to his desk are slimmer yet.

It was a Republican driven issue. If you doubt this, do a little research on the Contract with America.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 12:45 PM
Doug Bandow is actually a self-described Libertarian, not a Republican as this article would lead to you believe. He was forced to resign from the Reagan Administration (something the author must have "forgotten" to include in the article). For someone who left so bitter against the Reagan Administration, he sure does still attempt to live off that temporary 8 month position even today.



I knew he wasn't a true Reaganite.

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 12:47 PM
Clinton stole a Republican issue when he implented welfare reform.

You mean the rhetoric of welfare reform? Because he vetoed it TWICE...

Before finally realizing how damaging an over-ride of a THIRD veto would have been....politically, speaking.

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:47 PM
I knew he wasn't a true Reaganite.
Hell, no. This is salon.com we are talking about, not a reputable agency.

NewChief would have been better served to visit scifi.com and read about Stargate Atlantis, as it has about as many facts as Bandow does about the current administration.

jAZ
09-10-2004, 12:50 PM
The hell he did.
So you are saying that he didn't sign into law the welfare reform bill?

The Democratic party has co-opted some of the best of the conservative movement under Clinton.

Free trade, welfare reform, balanced budgets.

The Democratic party has moved toward the middle while Republican party has moved to the right. Why do you think that they 3rd party challengers are popping up on the far left?

No one likes to admit it, because it hurts the argument that a Republican must be elected. But its true. Clinton moved the party to the right.

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:51 PM
So you are saying that he didn't sign into law the welfare reform bill?

The Democratic party has co-opted some of the best of the conservative movement under Clinton.

Free trade, welfare reform, balanced budgets.

The Democratic party has moved toward the middle while Republican party has moved to the right. Why do you think that they 3rd party challengers are popping up on the far left?

No one likes to admit it, because it hurts the argument that a Republican must be elected. But its true. Clinton moved the party to the right.
LMAO - Oh, that would explain the Democrat Senate and House control today. I guess if you are gouing to be a history revisionist, you may as well lie about everything.

jAZ
09-10-2004, 12:52 PM
Why do you think that they 3rd party challengers are popping up on the far left?
Hell why do you think Republicans are moving to the Libertarian party?

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 12:54 PM
Hell why do you think Republicans are moving to the Libertarian party?
He said from Gary Condit's and Zell Miller's front porch.

Brock
09-10-2004, 12:55 PM
Hell why do you think Republicans are moving to the Libertarian party?

To sit further away from the Democrats, I would guess.

Mr. Kotter
09-10-2004, 12:57 PM
Hell why do you think Republicans are moving to the Libertarian party?

And why Democrats are moving to the Republican party on one side, and the Socialist party on the other.... :)

jAZ
09-10-2004, 01:01 PM
And why Democrats are moving to ... the Socialist party
Thanks for making my point.

patteeu
09-10-2004, 01:07 PM
I didn't read the entire article or the thread, but based on my skim job (I said skim not rim), I think the author is right. If your #1 issue is limited government, you'd be better off voting for Kerry and a republican congress and hoping for gridlock than you are voting for Bush. It's no secret that Bush and the Republican congress have turned their backs on small government conservatism during their first 4 years. This might be a cynical tactic to win re-election (as Rush Limbaugh has suggested) or it might be that Bush isn't really all that conservative (which is what I think).

BUT, if your #1 issue has to do with the war against terrorism, then I think US-sovereignty/strong-defense conservatives are fully justified in thinking Bush is their man. Especially when contrasted with John Kerry.

In the long run, I'm a small government conservative and that's why I've been voting Libertarian rather than Republican for the past several cycles. But this time around, I'm voting for the candidate that is best for our immediate confrontation with the worldwide radical islamist movement, and I think the guy for that job is GWBush.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 01:14 PM
So you are saying that he didn't sign into law the welfare reform bill?

That is not what I said. I said the reason he signed it into law is because of the REPUBLICAN led initiative that was part of the Contract with America. The only reason that reform made it to Clinton's desk is because of the Republican's. You said he stole the issue, that is an out right lie.

The Democratic party has co-opted some of the best of the conservative movement under Clinton.

Free trade, welfare reform, balanced budgets.

With the exception of NAFTA, which if memory serves me correctly was before the Republican take over of congress, the items you listed were part of the Contract with America. The only reason they were even legitimate issues is because the Republican's made them so.

The Democratic party has moved toward the middle while Republican party has moved to the right. Why do you think that they 3rd party challengers are popping up on the far left?

No one likes to admit it, because it hurts the argument that a Republican must be elected. But its true. Clinton moved the party to the right.


Hahaha, yeah he moved them to the right after the '94 elections. Before that we saw what the Clintons really want as was demonstrated by tax raises and Hillary's socialist healtchare plan, which was so extreme her own party left her hanging out to dry, and they had the control of congress.

Clinton realized that had he been up for re-election in '94 he would have been out the door. Thusly, he moved more towards the center as it was the politically expedient thing for him to do.

Cochise
09-10-2004, 01:15 PM
ROFL... I'm literally LOL at the 'history' lesson I'm getting from jAZ here.

RINGLEADER
09-10-2004, 01:15 PM
Bush is a long way from being conservative on many issues, but Kerry is a long way from being conservative on EVERY issue.

Too bad the Dems didn't nominate someone like Ed Rendell...I could vote for him. In fact there are several Dems I could support like Harold Ford Jr. and even Bill Richardson.

Too bad they nominated Kerry.

RINGLEADER
09-10-2004, 01:16 PM
Hell why do you think Republicans are moving to the Libertarian party?


Should I file this along with Zell Miller's speech and the swift boat vets as reasons why Bush isn't leading Kerry by more than 7+ points in most polls?

Cochise
09-10-2004, 01:16 PM
ROFL

"Bush lite"... how liberal do you have to be to think that sKerry and Bush are pretty much the same thing? ROFL ROFL ROFL

RINGLEADER
09-10-2004, 01:18 PM
Clinton stole a Republican issue when he implented welfare reform.


So you agree that he did it for purely political reasons?

Personally, Clinton signing welfare reform was one of the few redeeming acts of his presidency and he should get credit for it.

StcChief
09-10-2004, 01:20 PM
As If the CATO institute has any credibility

NewChief
09-10-2004, 01:23 PM
Quick question:

If this is a Cato scholar, wouldnt one be able to find this person stating as much on Cato's website?

You mean like here?
http://www.cato.org/people/bandow.html

Cochise
09-10-2004, 01:26 PM
So you agree that he did it for purely political reasons?

Personally, Clinton signing welfare reform was one of the few redeeming acts of his presidency and he should get credit for it.

I agree. But to take the credit for a welfare reform bill from the party that kept pressing the issue and got an opposition President to sign the bill kicking and screaming after multiple vetos to keep himself in office, ad then assign it to the party that is constantly attempting to expand it and bring more people under the dependency umbrella, is downright hilarious.

I guess it's not surprising, though, when you've just decided in your mind that "I am a democrat, so whatever they believe is what I believe" and adjust your views accordingly.

Cochise
09-10-2004, 01:27 PM
You mean like here?
http://www.cato.org/people/bandow.html

So the guy is a columnist who was fired from the Reagan administration. That's quite a list of qualifications.

NewChief
09-10-2004, 01:30 PM
So the guy is a columnist who was fired from the Reagan administration. That's quite a list of qualifications.

He asked, I delivered. Didn't say anything else. BTW, I'd call him quite a bit more qualified than many of our Chiefsplanet Fellows in Punditry.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 01:31 PM
So you agree that he did it for purely political reasons?

Personally, Clinton signing welfare reform was one of the few redeeming acts of his presidency and he should get credit for it.


For signing it, yes. For anything more than that, no. He did not make it an issue, he proposed no legislation to congress in this regard. This was purely a Republican driven issue. He just signed it, no more, no less. That is all the credit he is due on the subject.

Raiderhader
09-10-2004, 01:32 PM
He asked, I delivered. Didn't say anything else. BTW, I'd call him quite a bit more qualified than many of our Chiefsplanet Fellows in Punditry.


Of course you would.

Cochise
09-10-2004, 01:35 PM
He asked, I delivered. Didn't say anything else. BTW, I'd call him quite a bit more qualified than many of our Chiefsplanet Fellows in Punditry.

All I'm saying is the guy is just a columnist. He has an opinion, and of course, opinions are like Clymers, everybody's got one.

KCTitus
09-10-2004, 01:39 PM
You mean like here?
http://www.cato.org/people/bandow.html

Thanks...scanning the opinion pieces there is a Fortune mag piece from April about the 'conservative case for voting democrat'.

It's basically from nothing more than a fiscal standpoint. While he has a point, there are far bigger issues than fiscal issues as to why conservatives shouldnt vote democrat.

the Talking Can
09-10-2004, 02:34 PM
Yet Bush's foreign policy record is as bad as his domestic scorecard. The administration correctly targeted the Taliban in Afghanistan, but quickly neglected that nation, which is in danger of falling into chaos. The Taliban is resurgent, violence has flared, drug production has burgeoned and elections have been postponed.

Iraq, already in chaos, is no conservative triumph. The endeavor is social engineering on a grand scale, a war of choice launched on erroneous grounds that has turned into a disastrously expensive neocolonial burden.

Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction, contrary to administration claims, and no operational relationship with al-Qaida, contrary to administration insinuations. U.S. officials bungled the occupation, misjudging everything from the financial cost to the troop requirements.

Particularly shocking is the administration's ineptitude with regard to Iraq. Fareed Zakaria writes in Newsweek, "On almost every issue involving postwar Iraq -- troop strength, international support, the credibility of exiles, de-Baathification, handling Ayatollah Ali Sistani -- Washington's assumptions and policies have been wrong. By now most have been reversed, often too late to have much effect. This strange combination of arrogance and incompetence has not only destroyed the hopes for a new Iraq. It has had the much broader effect of turning the United States into an international outlaw in the eyes of much of the world."

Sadly, the Iraq debacle has undercut the fight against terrorism. The International Institute for Strategic Studies in its most recent study warns that the Iraq occupation has spurred recruiting by smaller terrorist groups around the world. And acting CIA Director John McLaughlin worries that terrorists are plotting "something big" against the United States. For a time the Pentagon considered closing its child care center, lest it become the target of an attack. NRO columnist Goldberg observes that the president's contention that the war in Iraq has made America safer "is absurd." Goldberg backs the war for other reasons, but says it was probably "the risky thing in the short run."

Bush -- not even sure himself whether the war on terrorism is winnable -- has been unable to demonstrate how Iraq has reduced the threat of terrorism against America. Instead, he says: "I need four more years to complete the work. There's more work to do to make America a safer place. There's more work to do to make the world a more peaceful place." Alas, there's more work, far more work, to do because of Bush's misguided policies.

A few conservatives are distressed at what Bush has wrought in Iraq. "Crossfire" host Tucker Carlson said recently: "I think it's a total nightmare and disaster, and I'm ashamed that I went against my own instincts in supporting it." William F. Buckley Jr., longtime National Review editor and columnist, wrote: "With the benefit of minute hindsight, Saddam Hussein wasn't the kind of extra-territorial menace that was assumed by the administration one year ago. If I knew then what I know now about what kind of situation we would be in, I would have opposed the war."
--------------------------------------------

wow....real issues, imagine if our "left-wing" media spent time talking about Bush's pathetic record instead of the swift boat veterans....imagine if our corporate-owned journalists actually informed the public as opposed to distracting it

nice to hear some one stand up and be counted: Bush "lied" about the medicare bill...."but hey did you hear that speech by Zell, it was great!"

if the democrats had any candidate at all they'd smash this farce of a president to pieces....that is an excellent, and damning article

KCWolfman
09-10-2004, 02:59 PM
He asked, I delivered. Didn't say anything else. BTW, I'd call him quite a bit more qualified than many of our Chiefsplanet Fellows in Punditry.
Hell, I would list quite a few right wing columnists in there as well, that doesn't mean you or people like jAZ would consider it a verifiable source.

listopencil
09-10-2004, 10:07 PM
This articel started out well, it made a few points about Bush not being a "conservative" that I've found obvious for some time. Then the author just had to start grinding that political axe. Non sequitors. Hypotheses presented as facts, then extended to predict future events with no logical basis. It's a political ad presented as rational debate. Worthless.