Sunday, March 30, 2008

Please, someone give McCain a history book

While reading earlier about John McCain's overview of foreign policy, the senator made mention of a League of Democracies, as found in the Washington Post:

Why do I bring up the urgency for McCain to read a good book on history? McCain blathers on about a League of Democracies to help eradicate tyranny from the world. By merely instigating this conversation, McCain sounds eerily like President Bush's 2nd inaugural address where he intended to liberate the world from tyranny. As noble as such a crusade might be, it is wholly unrealistic and irresponsible.

Why does McCain think a League of Democracies will help the United States achieve its foreign policy goals? Conservatives (myself included) famously denounce the United Nations and desire to be divorced from the bureaucratic black hole. Why would we want to remove ourselves from the UN only to take the lead in an organization with the same function but under a different name? What exactly does democracy have to do with eradicating tyranny? McCain, and Bush for that matter, presuppose that democracy means the absence of tyranny. Conservatives claim that Ahmadinejad in Iran is a tyrant, many of whom think needs to be removed, may not realize that he was elected democratically. If you ask me, Iran is no model of democracy, but the sad truth is that it is more of a democracy than the one Bush and McCain keep touting.

Let it be said: Democracy in no way presupposes freedom. In 1918, in the final hours of World War I, Germany rewrote its constitution and governing apparatus to become the most liberal democracy in the history of the West. It was on paper a more liberal democracy than we have ever had in this country (which, technically, is not a true democracy but a constitutional republic), and what happened? German democracy hoisted Hitler to power who tore down the democracy and initiated the Third Reich. The point being, democracy means nothing by itself, and there must be the desire of the people. How do we even know the Iraqi people will know what is best for them or best for us after all the sacrifice that has been made for that sandtrap?

Another point: Democracy is not some kind of utopia. The convention goes, "Oh, if they have democracy they will stop hating each other and stop attempting genocides." If anything, democracy is the least efficient form of government. Suppose Americans go to the polls and on the ballot is an initiative to forever deny the vote to Republicans. There are more registered Democrats in this country and the initiative is passed 55-45 and Republicans no longer vote. Some kind of freedom and absence of tyranny. An extreme hypothetical example, I know.

So, I am eternally hopeful that someone (maybe even his unofficial fact-checker Joe Liebermann) can inform McCain that replacing the UN with a League of Democracies or any other pseud0-League of Nations is not helpful. It is based on the assumption that people will naturally know what is best and make the proper and responsible decision that is in the best interests of their country. But, we don't even do that here. If it got put on the ballot whether the troops come home from Iraq or stayed for the duration, I would wager that it would not be a very close decision.

Time for someone to give the Straight Talk Express some hard facts about democracy and human nature.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Stuck Between a Rock, a Hard Place . . . and Something Else

Many people think about voting in elections as choosing the lesser of two evils. I have cast one presidential ballot in my life, for George W. Bush in 2004. Even though I occasionally ponder the wisdom of that choice and whether I would vote for Bush again if I had the chance, I am confronted by the dilemma for non-interventionist, limited government, constitutionalist paleoconservatives such as myself.

I cannot in good conscience vote for John McCain. The Vietnam veteran gained prestige as a maverick by snubbing the Republican Party in general and conservatives in particular. And how do many conservatives intend to reward McCain? By voting him into the highest office in the land.

What about Hillary Clinton? While I recover from the mere suggestion of my conservative vote for Hillary, I should at least honestly consider the possibility. She’s the liberal we all love to hate. Some Republicans love to hate her so much that they are voting for her in Democratic primaries to confound Obama’s chance of securing the nomination thinking she would be easier to beat. As an observer of 1990's political battles, one thing I can be sure of is that Hillary Clinton is a fighter. The Clintons’ don’t lose pretty. And when or if they regain power it will be the 1990's all over again for conservatives, except maybe worse. This one has a chip on her shoulder and when asked about how she would make sure people accepted her universal health care plan she said, "Oh, there’ll be an enforcement mechanism."

Other conservatives such as Andrew J. Bacevich writing in the upcoming issue of "The American Conservative" suggest that Barack Obama is the choice for conservatives: While I respectfully disagree with Professor Bacevich, I do believe his strategy makes an interesting point. Readers of the aforementioned periodical may remember that editor Scott McConnell endorsed John Kerry because the senator’s dearth of personality and charisma would be the best chance for conservatives to come back in 2008. However, now we are in 2008 and the presumptive nominee was someone whose name was once volleyed as a potential vice-presidential sidekick for the liberal senator from Massachusetts. In short, Mr. Bacevich writes an intriguing rationale for a vote for Obama, but voting for the even worse evil in the hope of a lesser evil next time has more uncertainties than I care to enumerate.

So, where might one cast a ballot? In a moral victory of sorts, Ron Paul is remaining on the ballot, which means that when I finally cast a primary ballot in May, I can still vote for my candidate of choice. There is always the distinct possibility that I will vote for the candidate of the Libertarian Party. Perhaps I will stay home altogether. Viewing the current crop of candidates is not something that excites me, but depresses me.

As said earlier, John McCain made himself a national candidate by saying to Republicans and conservatives, "Screw you!" As I plan to withhold my vote from him, I would like to think that I am saying, "Screw you back!"

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Pretender

By now everyone must have heard about Barack Obama and some vague mention about a former pastor of his. Even I have to admit that it’s hard to miss someone who pins the perpetuation of HIV on the white government in order to commit a genocide. It’s even harder to ignore someone who simulates Bill Clinton’s Oval Office gyrations, calls 9/11 "the chickens coming home to roost," and "God damn America."

Everyone on television seemed to be saying that Obama needed to distance himself from his pastor or denounce him altogether.

Obama apologists insisted that the candidate need not disown a supporter just because he privately holds radical views. David Duke, the well-known white supremacist, supported my candidate of choice, Ron Paul. However, to my knowledge neither Duke nor Paul know each other and I certainly have not met the Aryan mouthpiece. So, what’s the difference between Obama’s case and Paul’s?

Ron Paul does not pick his supporters and neither does Obama. Any candidate has probably had some unruly supporters. But Jeremiah Wright, the minister in question, was someone extraordinarily close to Obama personally and until recently held a prominent position in the Obama campaign. Again, you don’t pick your supporters, but you do pick your minister. (Another way to look at it is this: Can you pick your minister? Yes we can.) Millions of people have voted for or become enthusiastic to the point of fanaticism for Obama because he is young, polished, possesses beautiful rhetoric, and was considered to be a man of good character. But what man of good character encourages vitriol like what we’ve heard on television and the internet?

Obama is supposed to embody post-racial America. I would like to think that I live in a post-racial America. You’re an American on the inside, not the outside. Racial color is only skin-deep. After all, wasn’t it Dr. King who pled for a color-blind society? That all seems reasonable to me. But in his now-famous race speech, Obama spoke in deterministic tones: "I can no more renounce him than I can my white grandmother." Still, you don’t pick your grandmother but you do pick your pastor. If Obama really believes in this post-racial America that millions thinks he embodies, wouldn’t he want to worship in a place other than one that still thinks it’s the 1940's? If he believes in all these ideals why then does he expose his young children to this worldview? To be entirely honest, if one attempted to find a church which corresponded with Obama’s rhetoric, Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago should really be the last place anyone would look. Comparing Obama’s platform versus his place of worship really does remind one of the saying, "The biggest lies are wrapped in the most beautiful packages."

Other Obama apologists also claim that that is simply a typical black church. There’s nothing unusual about it, and it’s mostly a cultural phenomenon, so there’s no big deal. However, according to this youtube video, you will also see that that may not be the case.

So, what does this tell us about Obama, the man who would be president. Is our first viable black candidate for president really harboring racist sentiments? It’s not unreasonable to think that a politician with an intoxicating personality will tell crowds the exact opposite of what he really means. Barack Obama has had crowds that might have rivaled those that met Christ in Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. People faint over the man, Chris Matthews of MSNBC claimed to have felt shivers down his leg while listening to the senator talk, and even sworn racists such as Reverend Wright and Louis Farrakhan flock to Obama. All of this begs one to not ask the question, "Can Obama save this country," but "Is Obama secretly some sort of black supremacist with dictatorial implications?" I bring that last point up because the man has such an enthusiastic following. Any person who attracts that sort of devotion is dangerous, especially when people know so little about the man. And any person who might hide this sort of racial hypocrisy and supremacy reeks of tyranny. While I do fear a McCain or second Clinton White House, I am perhaps more fearful of an Obama White House.

Although, some of Obama’s more prominent supporters might insist it is the Black House.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

What the Dems hath wrought

The Republicans have their candidate, John McCain, out of a field that had up to six (by my count) viable candidates for the nomination. This is infuriating for an anti-McCainite who bemoans what he may do to the party and our movement, but it does not quite compare to what lays in store for the Democrats. The oldest continuing political party in our country is in the throes of a civil war. The Democrats, you see, were supposed to have a coronation for Hillary Clinton.

Barack Obama got in the way.

Why are the Democrats stuck between a rock and a hard place trying to pick their nominee? There are no fundamental policy differences between the former First Lady and the freshman senator. So what's taking so long?

Some bystanders say that the voters are tired of the Clintons and want someone new. As a 16-year loather of the Clintons I feel the same way, but for ostensibly different reasons.

I earlier wrote about how the Democrats are defined by identity politics. They have a category for everyone: women, African-American, Hispanic, homosexual, homeless, interpretive dancers from Bangkok, and an assortment of other ludicrous identity labels. The Democrats need these special interest groups to keep themselves afloat. Everyone has something they need subsidized. Democrats keep welfare programs and other bureaucratic wastes thriving, thus always giving people who live off them the obligation to keep voting for them. Without these special interest groups we probably would not be blessed with a Democratic Party.

So, what has happened? The two leading contenders for the nomination are a woman and a black man. Two of the Democrats' biggest constituencies were set against each other. Who has been more afflicted? Women or blacks? I don't personally care. Both candidates share a sense of entitlement to the nomination. If either of them garner a majority of delegates before the convention, neither will have a mandate of the party. And will all of the Democrats' blacks obediently march in step behind Hillary Clinton after her husband, the worst ex-president in American history, turned Obama into the "black candidate" who does not have any experience when the only experience we know Hillary has is looking the other way?

Some experts are saying that Bill Clinton has sabotaged his wife's campaign by being a bully, doing her dirty work, and throwing their black constituency under the bus. I do believe that has had some to do with the demise of the inevitable candidate. But the Democrats put themselves in this mess before Bill started yapping. Everybody in the party has a sense of entitlement. We deserve the nomination because our people have suffered more than yours. Now the Dems are facing the specter of a brokered convention.

The Republicans are facing an arranged marriage with John McCain, who has frequently spit in their face. The Democrats are facing the consequences of having no convictions and only special interest groups.

But maybe it beats being Eliot Spitzer right now.