Daily Archives: February 10, 2012

Arguing with a Romney Opponent


Romney Opponent: Romneycare!
Romney supporter: But Romneycare kept healthcare in the private sector. Did you want him to just let the liberals destroy the private sector?

O: A real conservative would have just vetoed their bill.
R: Romney vetoed lots of spending bills. In 2006 all 250 of his vetoes were overridden. Did you want him to just roll over and let the liberals win, or do the right thing and protect the private sector as any good conservative would.

O: A real conservative would have made an effective argument.
R: With the Massachusetts legislature? Why don’t you try that Don Quixote.

O: No it just means Romney is bad at convincing the people.
R: You can’t always win when arguing with idiots.* Even God effectively lost the argument with Pilate. Sometimes you just can’t win. Liberal legislature in the most liberal state not going to hear it. But rich businessman in a liberal state, Mormon in a Catholic state, conservative in a the bluest state on the map…Romney got elected governor, he must be good at some arguments.

O: Reagan would have convinced the people he was right and not given in.
R: Reagan gave in lots of time. A good leader knows when to pick their battles, which Romney did.

O: Well Romney’s not a good leader.
R: In defiance of all the facts behind his excellent leadership at Bain, at the Olympics, and reducing the budget deficit in Massachusetts.

O: Well he’s a liberal.
R: Even though he stopped liberal measures wherever he could?

O: Romneycare!
R: [bangs head into wall]

*like now.

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Filed under Election 2012, Mitt Romney

It’s story time…the story of the conservative who was called a liberal

It’s the tale of a former governor of what is possibly the most liberal state in the union. Let’s call him R. Early in life R was a big supporter of the most liberal president in history. Before R ran for president his only political position had been this governorship. Both times he ran against opposition in the primary his opponents chided for having only been the governor of a liberal state. But before R had been governor he had been the president of one of the largest private organizations in the country, having a stake in the one of the largest industries in the world. What did he do during this time? R made some deals that cost people a lot of money…and to this day he is hated for those choices…but his actions guaranteed people in the industry income for generations to come whereas only worrying about the immediate needs would have cost the future the wealth that was to come.*

As governor R did some things that conservatives didn’t like. He signed a bill that restricted unlimited gun rights. He singed a liberal bill about healthcare and abortion but later said he would not have signed it and was later firmly pro-life. R was a strong defender of the environment…He was also extremely tough on crime, but R’s pseudo-conservative foes really didn’t acknowledge this point.

As chief executive R tried to always be a fiscal conservative…but he had a problem. Liberals and a few RINOs controlled both houses of the legislature. And they wanted to some really liberal things. But he had things that he knew needed to be done. He knew he could fight the liberals tooth and nail on all their entitlement projects, or he could cut deals, he could soften the blows the liberals planned to the economy where he could and get conservative necessities in exchange for liberal pet projects. When he couldn’t cross certain lines he would just veto what he had to. Newt Gingrich as always called his plans foolish, suggested preposterous ideas that would never work and only end in failure…and when he couldn’t get what he wanted Newt, backstabber he is, just insulted our conservative.

The first time R ran for the presidency he lost to the establishment candidate. A weak willed RINO who questioned our conservative governor’s conservative credentials on every point. This allowed his critics, the second time he ran to claim that his economic ideas were either foolish or weren’t truly conservative…ignoring the fact that his opposition has supported big government programs for their entire lives.

But you know what happened. Conservatives forgave R his deals with liberals because they saw he was doing the best he could with the legislature he had. They not only forgave him…they all but anointed him a saint.

….oh wait…who did you think I was talking about? Romney? No, I was talking about Ronald Reagan.

Because the fact of the matter is there are some similarities. I’m not claiming that Romney is “The Great Communicator,” that he is not. Nor do I think he is as good a Reagan in a lot of ways…who is. But what I want to talk about here is the way we conservatives are holding a double standard.

Reagan allowed massive increases not just in spending but in deficit spending on entitlement programs because it was the only way he could get what he needed for his primary goal: the destruction of the Soviet Union. He even raised taxes a little after his initial tax cut. And there are a thousand other little deals he cut with the Democrat Congress that would usually be called anathema to Republicans if it weren’t for the fact that we understood there was a point and reason for doing those things. We saw the forest from the trees. We saw where his hands were tied and granted that given the situation he did the best he could and forgive him the liberal deals he cut because they served a greater good. And when liberals bitch about his deficit spending we rightly point out it was their Democratic House which did all the spending.

Now if you applied the same logic to Romney you look at it and say: Yes he created a mandate for health insurance in Massachusetts, but that was certainly better than putting everyone under government run healthcare and destroying the private sector in Massachusetts as the liberal legislature wanted to originally do. It was certainly more conservative, it was certainly more free market oriented. Had he gone to the mat and stood only for the free market he would have lost and you would have socialized medicine in Massachusetts that would make you yearn for the Canadian system. Was it perfect? No. Was it more free market than what the left wanted? Yes. What are the worst aspects of “Romneycare”? The parts that Romney either vetoed and was overridden by the Massachusetts legislature or the parts that the liberals put in after Romney left. (If we’re going to hold people responsible for legislation passed after their term in office, then Reagan is responsible for Obamacare, FDR and LBJ are responsible for welfare reform, and Lincoln is responsible for Jim Crow laws…wait that doesn’t sound right…yet somehow that’s the argument against Romney). Ann Coulter pointed this out.

Or perhaps you want to hit Romney for his indexing the minimum wage in the commonwealth to the inflation rate. Yes, let’s ignore that the liberals wanted it to outpace the inflation rate (i.e. create an economic apocalypse). Yes he should have fought against the highly liberal legislature who would usually override his vetoes (for instance he vetoed 250 bills one year, all of them were overridden ) or he could suggest something he could sell that wouldn’t completely destroy the economy. Yeah I can see how going to the mat would be the better call there. And recently he said his “thoughts” on the minimum wage “haven’t changed”…hmmm, he didn’t say he was going to raise it, only that his thoughts haven’t changed…to me that’s political speak for “I’m not going to say something that is going to get me in ever more trouble, but I’m not going to lie.” His thoughts could be that he would like to cut, he’s never said, we only know that his actions opposed letting it go higher than the inflation rate. How terrible.

Everything Romney did in Massachusetts was designed to be more businesses like, more conservative, more capitalistic than what the liberal legislature wanted…but still pragmatic enough to get passed because he knew if he fought the good fight then the liberals would just override his veto and get what they wanted.

We have always forgiven Reagan his liberal trespasses because we knew it was the best he could do. It is the most hypocritical double standard to say that Reagan’s best when cutting deals with liberals was fine…but Romney’s is not.

You can either accept that Reagan is a conservative and thus Romney is too. Or you can condemn Romney, which means you must condemn Reagan as well…and if you condemn Reagan then get the hell out of this party.

*[He unpopularly cut a deal with the studios that said actors would not get paid royalties on movies they did not have royalty guarantees on, but guaranteed that all actors would get residuals on all movies, TVs shows or other forms of cinema that were ever made after that deal.]

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Filed under Budget, Capitalism, Congress, Conservative, Debt, Economics, Election 2012, GOP, Long Term Thinking, Mitt Romney, People Are Stupid, politics, Problems with the GOP, Taxes

While looking over Atlas Shrugged

It’s been a while since I’ve quoted Atlas Shrugged. Now I realize this is a very long quote so I’ll give a summary up front. “Show me how someone views sex and how they view the sex they are attracted to and I’ll tell you everything you need to know about that person. Someone who hates sex hates themselves. Someone who seeks the bimbo hates themselves. Show me a man who hates women for being women, or a woman who hates men for being men and I will show you self-loathing of untold depth. Show me someone who hates sex or loves bimbos and I will show you someone who can’t be trusted.”

“Do you remember what I said about money and about the men who seek to reverse the law of cause and effect? The men who try to replace the mind by seizing the products of the mind? Well, the man who despises himself tries to gain self- esteem from sexual adventures–which can’t be done, because sex is not the cause, but an effect and an expression of a man’s sense of his own value.”

“You’d better explain that.”

“Did it ever occur to you that it’s the same issue? The men who think that wealth comes from the material resources and has no intellectual root or meaning, are the men who think–for the same reason–that sex is a physical capacity which functions independently of ones mind, choice or code of values. They think that your body creates a desire and makes a choice for you just about in some such way as if iron ore transformed itself into railroad rails of its own volition. Love is blind, they say; sex is impervious to reason and mocks the power of all philosophers. But, in fact, a man’s sexual choice is the result and the sum of his fundamental convictions. Tell me what a man finds sexually attractive and I will tell you his entire philosophy on life. Show me the woman he sleeps with and I will tell you his valuation of himself. No matter what corruption he’s taught about the virtue of selflessness, sex is the most profoundly selfish of all acts, an act which he cannot perform for any motive but his own enjoyment–just try to think of performing it in a spirit of selfless charity!–an act which is not possible in self-abasement, only in self-exaltation, only in confidence of being desired and being worthy of desire. It is an act that forces him to stand naked in spirit, as well as in body, and to accept his real ego as his standard of value. He will always be attracted to the woman who reflects his deepest vision of himself, the woman whose surrender permits him to experience–or to fake–a sense of self-esteem. The man who is proudly certain of his own value, will want the highest type of woman he can find, the woman he admires, the strongest, the hardest to conquer — because only the possession of a heroine will give him the sense of an achievement, not the possession of a brainless slut. He does not seek to . . . what’s the matter?” he asked, seeing the look on Rearden’s face, a look of intensity much beyond mere interest in an abstract discussion.

“Go on,” said Rearden tensely.

“He does not seek to gain his value, he seeks to express it. There is no conflict between the standards of his mind and the desires of his body. But the man who is convinced of his own worthlessness will be drawn to a woman he despises–because she will reflect his own secret self, she will release him from that objective reality in which he is a fraud, she will give him a momentary illusion of his own value and a momentary escape from the morel code that damns him. Observe the ugly mess which most men make of their sex lives–and observe the mess of contradictions which they hold as their moral philosophy. One proceeds from the other. Love is our response to our highest values–and can be nothing else. Let a man corrupt his values and his view of existence, let him profess that love is not self-enjoyment but self-denial, that virtue consists, not of pride, but of pity or pain or weakness or sacrifice, that the noblest love is born, not of admiration, but of charity, not in response to values, but in response to flaws–and he will have cut himself in two. His body will not obey him, it will not respond, it will make him impotent toward the woman he professes to love and draw him to the lowest type of whore he can find. His body will always follow the ultimate logic of his deepest convictions; if he believes that flaws are values, he has damned existence as evil and only the evil will attract him. He has damned himself and he will feel that depravity is all he is worthy of enjoying. He has equated virtue with pain and he will feel that vice is the only realm of pleasure. Then he will scream that his body has vicious desires of its own which his mind cannot conquer, that sex is sin, that true love is a pure emotion of the spirit. And then he will wonder why love brings him nothing but boredom, and sex–nothing but shame.”

Rearden said slowly, looking off, not realizing that he was thinking aloud, “At least . . . I’ve never accepted that other tenet . . . I’ve never felt guilty about making money.”

Francisco missed the significance of the first two words; he smiled and said eagerly, “You do see that it’s the same issue? No, you’d never accept any part of their vicious creed. You wouldn’t be able to force it upon yourself. If you tried to damn sex as evil, you’d still find yourself, against your will, acting on the proper moral premise. You’d be attracted to the highest woman you met. You’d always want a heroine. You’d be incapable of self-contempt. You’d be unable to believe that existence is evil and that you’re a helpless creature caught in an impossible universe. You’re the man who’s spent his life shaping matter to the purpose of his mind. You’re the man who would know that just as an idea unexpressed in physical action is contemptible hypocrisy, so is platonic love–and just as physical action unguided by an idea is a fool’s self-fraud, so is sex when cut off from one’s code of values. Its’ the same issue, and you would know it. Your inviolate sense of self-esteem would know it. You would be incapable of desire for a woman you despised. Only the man who extols the purity of a love devoid of desire, is capable of the depravity of a desire devoid of love. But observe that most people are creatures cut in half who keep swinging desperately to one side or to the other. One kind of half is the man who despises money, factories, skyscrapers and his own body. He holds undefined emotions about non-conceivable subjects as the meaning of life and his claim of virtue. And he cries with despair, because he can feel nothing for the woman he respects, but finds himself in bondage to an irresistible passion for a slut from the gutter. He is the man whom people call an idealist. The other kind of half is the man whom people call practical, the man who despises principles, abstractions, art, philosophy and his own mind. He regards the acquisition of material objects as the only goal of existence– and he laughs at the need to consider their purpose or their source. He expects them to give him pleasure– and he wonders why the more he gets, the less he feels. He is the man who spends his time chasing women. Observe the triple fraud which he perpetrates upon himself. He will not acknowledge his need of self-esteem, since he scoffs at such a concept as moral values; yet he feels the profound self-contempt which comes from believing that he is a piece of meat. He will not acknowledge, but he knows that sex is the physical expression of a tribute to personal values. So he tries, by going through the motions of the effect, to acquire that which should have been the cause. He tries to gain a sense of his own value from the women who surrender to him– and he forgets that the women he picks have neither character nor judgment nor standard of value. he tells himself that all he’s after is physical pleasure– but observe that he tires of his woman in a week or a night, that he despises professional whores and that he loves to imagine he is seducing virtuous girls who make a great exception for his sake. It is the feeling of achievement that he seeks and never finds. What glory can there be in the conquest of a mindless body? Now that is your woman chaser. Does the description fit me?

“God, no!”

“Then you can judge, without asking my word for it, how much chasing of women I’ve done in my life.”

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Filed under Atlas Shrugged