Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Campaign Pre-Mortem, Part II

VodkaPundit loads up on lasagna, gets philosophical:
Libertarians/Conservatives . . . underestimate liberals/progressives -- and what we're guilty of is projection. But when we're drunk and honest, we have to admit: We're effing pikers. To restate more plainly: We don't want power, and don't know how to wield it. We're pikers.
Progressives have no such qualms. Given power, they'll take more and they'll exercise it ruthlessly. Look at the Democrats in Congress these last two years. In not even 24 months, they've sunk to depths it took the Republican Congress six or more years to sink to. Their unpopularity levels are even worse than the Republicans' in 2006. And what will happen in November? The Democrats will win seats -- because they know how to wield their power to deliver the goods to please their corrupt, greedy, grabby, needy base.

Yes, but don't you think the failures of the GOP have something to do with the Democrats' prospects for picking up seats this year? Excuse me while I mount my hobby horse.

Back during the 2006 pre-mortems, I argued that the Republican-led push for amnesty destroyed the enthusiasm of the conservative base. So what happened in 2007? The GOP pushed for amnesty again. And what did they do this year? Nominated Mr. Amnesty himself for president.

I hung out with Vodka during the Denver convention, so I know that the man earns his sobriquet every day. I also know that he is sincere in opposing the Lou Dobbs/Pat Buchanan/Michelle Malkin position on immigration (heckuva a coalition there). But I also know that open borders is a deal-breaker and a buzz-killer for most of the Republican base. You can't do as much talk radio as I've done and believe otherwise. Except for maybe the La Raza people, all the passion on this issue is anti-amnesty. And screw the La Raza people.

Conservatives who oppose amnesty see quite clearly that illegal immigration enhances the power of the progressive/liberal/Democratic bloc. Not only does it give them millions of impoverished, ill-educated warm bodies to mobilize on Election Day, but it also provides them with victims to celebrate, and the liberal/progressive agenda is dependent on the victimhood narrative.

All this glib Emma Lazarus-quoting nonsense about decent, hard-working people just trying to grab their slice of the American Dream overlooks the plain fact that at least 80% of these people are automatically going to vote Democrat, and their children (thanks to public-school education) are going to vote 90% Democrat, and the immediate addition of millions of votes to the Democratic bloc is a far more important political fact than the theoretical possibility that in 2060 perhaps a large percentage of the grandchildren of today's illegals will be sufficiently affluent to think about voting Republican.

Damn, that was a long sentence. But the point is that Democrats aren't bashful about pursuing the expansion of their electoral power, while some Republicans -- because of an abstract ideological or sentimental attachment to the idea of America as a "nation of immigrants" -- keep chasing the "outreach" will-o'-th'-wisp.

I remember in 2006 being told over and over by certain Republicans, "But Bush got 40% of the Hispanic vote in 2004!" Right. And now explain how the continual augmentation of a bloc that votes 60% Democrat is going to create that "Permanent Republican Majority" you keep talking about, Karl.

Advocates of free markets and limited government see anti-amnesty fervor as ideologically inconsistent with their core libertarian principles. Fine. But your core libertarian principles are going to be trampled into smithereens after your pro-amnesty Republican loses this election to a Democrat who's not going to be picky about whether his Hispanic voters in Florida, Virginia and Colorado are here legally or not.

¡Si se puede! ¡La educaciĆ³n es revoluciĆ³n!



  1. Wait... Are you arguing FOR or AGAINST open borders/amnesty/whatever?


    And also, I thought all the pundits agreed that it was GOP corruption (Mark Foley et al) that cost the 20067 elections.

    I'm lost.

    What the hell are you saying?

    Why can't we just agree that John McCain sucks as a candidate. He can't beat a Leftist candidate who consorts with genocidal Marxist Islamists, unrepentant domestic terrorists, money men for foreign terror organizations, Communist mentors, crooked community organizations hell bent on election theft, Illinois Combine felons... And who has admitted to drug use.

    This isn't about the Mexico border, it isn't about amnesty, it isn't about pipe dream libertarian wannabee policies.

    This is about a candidate who refuses to engage the opposition on policy and on the opposition's faults. This is about a candidate who can't elucidate his positions on health care, the economy, energy policy, foreign wars... You name it.

    John McCain is blowing this election and dragging down everyone to the right of Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov with him.

  2. @Steve
    Why can't we just agree that John McCain sucks as a candidate.
    Ah, but _why_?
    VodkaPundit talks about the Democrats as Progressives, but JSM is an admirer of Teddy Roosevelt, the Original Progressive.
    The plutocrats who own the Progressives have it all rigged at a very high level.
    Flip that two-headed coin Steve, and remember: you get tails.

  3. Great post, RS.
    The problem, I feel, with the anti-amnesty crowd is that it hasn't eloquently made its case. I am not down with open borders or illegal immigration, but the voices on the Right paint an ugly anti-non-white picture. When Bush did pull in that 40% hispanic vote I thought the Cons were finally making inroads with a voting block that naturally leans Republican.So your premise that immigrants are automatic Dem constituency is false if not flawed.So much of the illegal immigration focus is on the Mexican population that the plebes lose sight of the bigger problem. When you guys drop the pandering to the bumpkin crowd in your party, perhaps then will you begin to get somewhere with immigration reform....

  4. smitt1e,

    Oh, I get what VodkaPundit is saying. It's something that has driven me nuts for over eight years and what drove a lot of grass roots conservatives home for the 2006 elections:

    Conservatives eat their own.

    Progressives/Democrats/Evil Marxists, however... They vote en masse for their candidate no matter what. When was the last time you heard of a conservative writer/commenter/pundit offering to don "Presidential Kneepads" to get a favored policy from their leader in the White House? No matter the faults, no matter the problems, grass roots liberals vote for their guy or gal or it.

    We don't. We don't like some of our guy's policies? We don't vote or we vote for a no-chance thirteenth party candidate. We don't like the way we were treated at our movement's convention? We endorse that no name wannabee with no idea about how to even get on all of the state ballots.

    Conservatives want the perfect candidate right the hell now... And if you ain't him, screw ya!

    It wasn't immigration issues that screwed us in 2006, it was the fractious inanity that would rather martyr a nation for principle than get decent people elected and then WORK on getting even better ones elected. It took over 70 years for the liberals to screw us up, but we want instant recourse.

    Back to what RSM wrote here: He says that nominating Mr. Amnesty is what destroyed this election.


    McCain is simply a bad candidate -- amnesty or no amnesty. McCain should still have been an easy winner. McCain simply refuses to do what needs to be done to win.

    McCain won't hammer the Democrats and Obama on the FMs (CRA = Clinton = Frank/Dodd = Obama's campaign contributions). McCain will speak of Ayers, but only vewy vewy cahfuwy... And he won't touch Wright. Has he even heard of Odinga?

    And when his supporters ARE enthusiastic? Oh, No! Mr. Obama is a good family man! Let's not have that!

    Ok, I gotta go puke now. Then I gotta go figure out how to squirrel away some of what I still have for my grand daughter.

    Thanks loads, John.

  5. Hear, hear.

    I've usually got quibbles with you, but not this time.

    Open borders is a loser for libertarians and conservatives. Libertarians cannot thrive in an environment that is amenable to the present illegal immigrant.