Monday, March 2, 2009

Rush, Tucker Carlson and the CPAC Mob Analysed

This is a great piece by Rod Dreher, an editorial columnist for the Dallas Morning News and author of "Crunchy Cons. " His commentary on the recent CPAC get together, and dissection of conservativism is right on the money. Dig…

CPAC: White kids on dope

Ah, to be an anthropologist at CPAC, where the kids was smokin' th' political crack. From the WaPo:

[Tucker] Carlson got in a bit of a dust-up with the audience when he spoke Thursday. Arguing that conservatives need to put more effort into digging up facts and rely less on opinion and punditry, he noted that the New York Times, a favorite target of conservative wrath, at least cares about spelling people's names right.

"NOOOOOOO," arose a moan from some in the crowd.
"I'm merely saying that at the core of their news-gathering operation is gathering news."

Crowd: "NOOOOO . . ."
Carlson: ". . . finding facts and bringing it to people . . ."

Crowd: "NOOOOO . . ."

Verily, that's the way to bring the party back: blame the media. I talked to a conservative the other day who assured me that Obama's success is entirely a creation of the lying biased media, which tricked people into voting for him. The unpopularity of Republican policies has nothing to do with it.

Rush Limbaugh: "We can take this country back," the radio host told the assembly. "All we need is to nominate the right candidate."

It's no more complicated than that Yep, it's just that easy. No need to return to first principles and recalibrate policies to account for new realities. Just find a better messenger for the same old same old. You begin to see why nobody inside that bubble could grasp what a flop Bobby Jindal's reheated Republican mush of a speech was going to be ahead of time.

Rush: "Let me tell you who we conservatives are: 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 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."

This is a comforting lie. It is Rousseau conservatism: the idea that man is born innocent, but corrupted by society, or government. Remove the chains of government, and man will return to his natural, good state, which is one of limitless possibility. This denies two bedrock truths of philosophical conservatism, which are that 1) human nature is fallen, and 2) man must learn to live within limits. A conservatism that is not founded on a conscious recognition of those two truths is a false conservatism, and has a shaky foundation from which to criticize liberal utopianism.

Rush: “President Obama has the ability -- he has the ability to inspire excellence in people's pursuits. He has the ability to do all this, yet he pursues a path, seeks a path that punishes achievement, that punishes earners and punishes -- and he speaks negatively of the country. Ronald Reagan used to speak of a shining city on a hill. Barack Obama portrays America as a soup kitchen in some dark night in a corner of America that's very obscure. He's constantly telling the American people that bad times are ahead, worst times are ahead. And it's troubling, because this is the United States of America.”

Got that? Any attempt to grapple in a public way with the sins and failings of America, the errors that got us into this ditch, is to be seen as unpatriotic. We must ever keep before us the America Idol, and the power of positive thinking.

Rush: "The freedom we spoke of earlier is the freedom, it's the ambition, it's the desire, the wherewithal, the passions that people have that gave us the great entrepreneurial advances, the great inventions, the greatest food production, the human lifestyle advances in this country, why shouldn't that be rewarded?"

Pure, uncut Progressivism. It's astonishing, really.

Rush: "Conservative intellectuals, the Declaration of Independence does not need to be redefined and neither does conservativism. Conservativism is what it is and it is forever. It's not something you can bend and shape and flake and form. [Applause] Thank you."

Because, what, it was handed down from Sinai? One hardly knows what to say to this. Do they really believe politics is dogmatic religion? They must.

Rush: "So there will be different factions lining up to try to define what conservatism is. And beware of those different factions who seek as part of their attempt to redefine conservativism, as making sure the liberals like us, making sure that the media likes us. They never will, as long as we remain conservatives. They can't possibly like us; they're our enemy. In a political arena of ideas, they're our enemy."

This ideologically-driven right-wing Rousseauism, with Leninist overtones about the Enemies of the People? If so, then count me as an Enemy, because I want nothing to do with it, as I recognize it as simply a crudely politicized form of philosophical liberalism

Here's a comment following the article above:

John: "The Republicans are now formally and institutionally committed to lunacy, which is why I, though a registered R , will not vote for that party in the forseeable future"

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