Sunday, April 19, 2009

Another vampire needing a stake

by Smitty (h/t Insty)

Ashby Jones blogs in the WSJ on the "Hillary: The Movie" case, which is causing such a McCain-Feingold ruckus.
As with other government attempts at controlling stuff, the idea may sound plausible, but the implementation is nothing but a source of billable hours for pinstriped highwaymen. Or, as Ancient Commenter Solomon put it,
There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.--Proverbs 14:12
Not a bad summary of collectivism, in fact.
Related, also via Insty, from proto-blogger Jerry Pournelle:
It was obvious to me at the time DHS and Patriot Act (and TSA!) were bad moves. Aside from the fact that amalgamating many inefficient bureaucracies into one multiplies not divides the inefficiencies - efficient government is not an overriding concern of mine - centralizing power to meet a crisis leaves the centralized power available for abuse long after the crisis is forgotten. The chances that a future Democrat administration would disband DHS and repeal Patriot Act were patently zero even at the time. Expand, politicize, and abuse now are the order of the day, and I am not surprised in the least.
Both major parties seem now irredeemably statist. Many Republicans are starting to say the right things once more, but I doubt 51% will trust the party again soon enough to help. Nor should we, on the record. I attended the public signing of the Contract With America, and I watched as it was abandoned by Republican "realists" who seemed to think that absolute power in *their* hands was kinda neat.
What becomes of the Tea Parties looks crucial to me. "Federalist" might be a good name for the result - small-f federalism would be far better than what we have, and regardless of the details of the history the name has an intrinsic respectability that would make the new alliance somewhat harder to demonize in the bitter political warfare it would instantly face.
Look at what Governor Perry of Texas has been saying in recent days, and at the response. Arguing that Washington has become overlarge in the nation's affairs and that power should flow back to the regions and the people, that the 10th Amendment means what it says, seems as if its time may have arrived as the common ground for a new governing coalition.
It seems highly unlikely that all the factions the Republicans would need to unite to govern from the center-right will ever again simultaneously trust them (or anyone) with the current scale of massively centralized Federal power. Nor should we. Too many Republicans have swallowed far too many contradictions, have met the enemy and become them.
The Federalist Party. It has a certain ring.
This seems to invite the question of whether the GOP is reformable at all. Forming a third party that cares about the Constitution is going to give the centrists to the Democrats. This is tactically acceptable if the strategic result is restoration of what made these United States great. Can I get a Wolverines?


  1. If democrat activists can take over the democrat party, why can't we take the republican party? Third party = fail. We have the ability to take the party.

  2. It seems to me that Gen Y'ers so accustomed to affluence and social and economic (not to mention internet) freedom don't quite see the repercussions of the policies of their elected "Idols." What happens when their electronic horizons are constrained by Citizens Waxman and Pelosi to save the planet; their automobile choices are restricted by same to save the UAW; their ability to electronically [fill in you favorite blanks] is restricted because of diversity compliance or some other social engineering issue; or any of the other necessities which depend on some previously uncontrolled aspect of our lives? There also seems strong potential for sharp decrease in the USA's standard of living as a result of statist economic policies: the cute young things here in Silicon Valley will not like that.

    I love my nieces and nephews as I do my son, but don't expect them to remain cheerful when they give up what has been their baseline since youth. My grandparents were not indulged as children and so were not furiously pissed off during the '30's. Our children have been. And they are fickle and without loyalties.

  3. I'm on record here saying third parties are a non-starter. However, I was encouraged that many elected Republicans were politely refused speaking time at Tea Party events.
    Not encouraged because It sounds good, but because it shows people are really unhappy with the party leadership. They know in their gut that the only way to show their frustration is to let the elected ones know it, regardless of their "credentials."

    Besides, when I heard Hugh Hewitt tell Rich Lowry that "...we don't yet have a leader. Sarah Palin isn't [doing anything]; we have Huckabee and Romney."

    For Hugh to mention Huckabee as a "leader" tells me that the Republican party is still in deep trouble. Look for another McCain-like candidate to head their ticket in 2012.

    Given that possibility, why even bother with the Republicans?