David McSweeney 2
Ive been around too long to believe it. I remember when, compared to this election, the national Republicans were enveloped in a tidal wave and swept out to sea. That was 1964 when the pundits said there was no hope of return within the lifetimes of people covering the news. They pronounced that the GOP had a fatal flawthat flaw generated by Rutherford B. Hayes who sanctioned withdrawal of the Union army from the South after the Civil War which left blacks to the tender mercies of the white southerners. The Goldwater campaign which carried the southern states was a short-term phenomenon they said. The civil rights era coming up will cause blacks in the South to be dominant, so the white south is very transitory. Not true; not in the slightest sense true. The South has been for all practical purposes Republican country.
They didnt realize that the seeds of liberalisms excesses were coming to fruition with the violence in the cities and the awful anarchical rebellions during the Vietnam war. That produced a backlash that has been with us in many aspects even today. Barely four years after Goldwaters landslide defeat, Richard Nixonvery uncharismatic and a total washout as a human being not to mention campaignerwon over Humphrey. This idea that the 2006 mid-term elections which so narrowly captured the Senate and took a somewhat larger chunk of the House cannot be overcome is fatalistic nonsense. Out of loss can come great future victories: such as the one good thing that came from the Goldwater movement was the emergence of Ronald Reagan.
One of the best candidates to emerge this year has been David McSweeney who, if he determines to continue, will be likely to be elected the next time around. He has all the things that a candidate should have: hardy intellectual resources, courage, eloquence, character in abundance. I look around and see Ron Gidwitz who though not successful as a candidate for governor has the intellectual grasp that towers over many others
and who seemed to find himself late in the campaign to the point where he has a lot to provide in the future.
And I still say Jim Oberweis, whatever he wants to do, will be a force to be reckoned with: I would hope he would consider running against Dick Durbin and spend the entire time from now until 2008 campaigning against this charlatan
remembering it was an ex-Congressman who dropped out of the House because he had received an erroneous medical report that he was going blind and who found out the truth, started what was seen as a hopeless race against the Senates majority leader, Scott Lucas of Havana, Illinoiswith Everett Dirksen winning that contest and becoming a great leader of his own in the Senate.
I look with great favor on Tom Cross who, while we dont agree on some aspects of social policy, has mastered the technique of being a unity-prone leader, encouraging people like Aaron Schock who have different social views than his own: thats the essence of leadership.
The big difficulty with Republicans is this: we do not have even a faintly supportive media
and a supportive media intellectually is essential to generate the kind of intellectual ballast that is indispensable. You have the Sun-Times which is the Democratic partys unofficial newspaper of record which has begun an almost indecent outward campaign of promotion
almost like the newspapers did in the 19th century in favor of Lincoln and against Lincoln, in favor of McClellan and some blistering him
of Barack Obama.
Obama is indeed an exciting candidate but as a newspaper of pronounced opinion which makes no pretense of equivocating truth and untruththis paper has gone round the bend. This idea that Obama is a tabula razaan empty slate on which everyone who supports certain ideas wants to project them with himis wrong. He is at bottom a fervent liberal and near Fabian socialist with totally ultra-secular social tendencies, one who voted not just for partial birth abortion but to deny help to infants who survived near death in the womb from abortionists tools, voting to allow them to die of neglect and has the appalling bad taste to call this record the audacity of hope. All the while displaying the agreeable tendency to appear to consider various options: ah, you may have a point. Open-minded my foot. But with a stridently liberal press there is no other view but his in the Sun-Times. Youd think theyd have confidence in themselves to permit another viewbut no.
Then there is the Tribune which apart from John Kass and the Op Ed writer Dennis Byrne is totally the wanna-be Midwest edition of The New York Times or the Los Angeles Times. The suburban Herald newspaper is just slightly to the right, by tad inches of the Tribune, portraying the same dreary politically convenient clichés. No political party can win in any large state without any major editorial support. Until and unless that is changed, there is likely to be only the dull grey of institutional liberalism, sluggish and stagnant, running through the state. Only a candidate of enormous personal wealth could overcome that disadvantage. The good news is that both papers may be extinct before longor broken up to such a degree that their pernicious influence is abated.