JUST ASKING: Should Republicans Shut Down the Government?...What Should We Do About Libya?...Martin Sheen for Old St. Pat’s Benefit? Huh?
Pull the Plug.
Q. Okay, the Republicans campaigned as the party of telling it the way it is on spending and the debt. Now 51 GOP House members oppose Boehner’s short-term spending…and moderate Dems saved the GOP’s bacon. The new CR temporarily excludes defunding ObamaCare, climate change, Planned Parenthood and NPR. Boehner says he needs short-term extensions to continue negotiating a long-term deficit reduction with Harry Reid. What should Boehner do? A. Stop the fiddling around with Reid and Schumer who’re laughing up their sleeves at GOP nervousness and go for broke as a good many conservatives advise including the Heritage Foundation.
The worst thing you can do in politics is to run a tough campaign and then after election, wilt from doing what you promised to do. Excessive caution, frenzy about possible negative reaction, characterizes the county club, not true philosophical certainty.
Boehner should damn the torpedoes and ram straight ahead and move to shut the joint down or he’ll look like an emasculated puppy. Actually not to do so is to court inevitable disaster. Already he’s being mocked by the Democrats who say (a) House Republicans are so divided they cannot supply an acceptable alternative to the Dems’ budgetary demands—so they….the Republicans…are being held captive by their own innate timidity to follow through…and (b) they’re putty.
Q. But-but look what happened to Gingrich in the last shutdown sixteen years ago! A. This is where a perspiring historical revisionism has made the GOP tremble. There were two shutdowns. The 1995 one happened twice…five days in November, 1995 and three weeks between mid-December `95 to early January, 1996. Actually, while Gingrich was the fall guy it was because of his peppery, arrogant attitude that included being upset because he was relegated to backseat status on Air Force I coming back from Israel Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin’s funeral. Also he had a panicky relativistic Senate partner, Bob Dole, who wanted to allay the waters so he could run unencumbered for president in 1996. Actually,the Republicans won for the first time in many years renewal of their congressional majority! And the result was four straight years of balanced budgets and retirement of $450 billion of U. S. debt. The Republicans reformed welfare and passed the first tax cut in sixteen years—the very same tax cut that enabled us to balance the budget four years earlier than earlier anticipated. The resurge of Clinton was due in part to Gingrich’s unpopularity, yes—but his abrasive attitude and his fliberty-gibbet introduction of too many issues for public digestion—including whether or not we ought to reinstitute orphanages instead of day-care. I firmly believe that if Boehner flubs this thing up with excessive caution, it will be disastrous and lead to wholesale defections from Tea Party’ers and possible formation of a divisive counterparty which could have serious consequences in 2012. Instead of having a slender reed of non-support in the Senate as Gingrich had with Dole—who never did have any fixed philosophy of government beyond saving his own political neck, Boehner has one of the brightest, most principled, firmest Senate GOP leaders of all time in Mitch McConnell. That’s why I say: Go for it. There’s really no choice—not to go for it is to court almost certain political repudiation. Q. And now Libya.
It’s too late to “save” Libya and that’s okay with me. More than two generations ago, my political hero Sen. Robert Taft (R-Ohio) said there should only be two conditions warranting our involvement in any country’s imbroglios—to protect the (a) peace and (b) liberty of the United States. I can justify our invasion of Iraq because we thought Saddam Hussein was harboring weapons of mass destruction—and while the weapons didn’t turn up there, the 90-year-old top expert on the Middle East, Bernard Lewis, said it was the only occasion in modern times where we served notice we’d respond in our own defense against Moslem hatred of us with asperity.
But the frantic idealism of Woodrow Wilson….”to make the world safe for democracy” a hideous concept which translated: force-feed democracy upon the world—was recycled by George W. Bush and Rummy’s deputy secretary of defense “Wolfie” aka Paul Wolfowitz—to a thoughtless degree. What’s amazing to me how liberal Democrats are almost always in the forefront of interventionism and then when the going gets tough, bail out. Sure enough pushing for a Libya no-fly zone and even invasion are…ready?...John Kerry and Joe Lieberman—along with John McCain. I’m glad to note that at least one of our presidential candidates—Haley Barbour—is expressing concern about our seemingly endless slog in Afghanistan. Of course the same-old, same-old protagonists are pushing for more and more involvement—Billy Kristol, Charles Krauthammer and the editorial board ofThe Wall Street Journal. Rumsfeld himself is…and always has been since I first met him when we were staffers on the same floor of what was then called the “New House Office Building” second floor in 1957—I working for a Minnesota congressman and he for an Ohio one down the hall… a master of dissimulation. The other day I grabbed his weighty tome and sat for a long time at Barnes & Noble. I found it a masterpiece of covering-his-posterior with memos to self and others larded throughout to spare accountability—cutting off any argument that would say what many insiders knew…that he second-guessed the military with as much arrogance as Robert McNamara did on Vietnam, that he opposed the surge, that he punished generals who maintained rightly that more men and materiel were needed in Iraq. The Spineless Liberal Archdiocese. Ah a Celtic fest based on Irish hockum…fit for the well-marketed Mother Church of the Squid where pro-abort and pro-same-sex marriage liberal Catholics can receive the body and blood of Christ while in mortal sin advocacy, secure that they will not be criticized but will have only their calloused consciences to reckon with under the heretical misstated formulae of Fundamental option! Where else but Old St. Patrick’s where no one’s beliefs are challenged…the Daleys…Durbin…the jingos of the left who espouse Obama’s support for near infanticide? Being Irish covers a multitude of hogwash—no one doing it better than oldknock-knock! Who’s there? Who’s home?Rich Daley who plays the dunce willingly to avoid facing up to his Church’s theology to which he is unfaithful. And who else to raise dough for the cynical fomenters of Irish Babylon than a lefty ideologue actor who embraces relativism on abortion and to get ahead hooked the name of Sheen because he wanted to get return calls which he knew he wouldn’t receive if he left the return name and number of Ramon Geraldo Antonio Estavez? In a straight-run archdiocese this embarrassment would be cancelled. Not here. At least Estavez had the good grace to steal and merchandise a bogus identity...the magic name “Sheen” referring to the late theologically consonant bishop with which he masquerades along with description of himself as “devout.” He fits in very well with the liberal phonies of “Old St. Pat’s”…the shameless apostates…who thinks of the parish as a diamond but which as heaven knows and will ultimately show, is dullish zircon for flaccid rudderless pragmatism and archdiocesan parsing larded beyond Catholic theological recognition by decades of pragmatism, slick marketing and puerile radical leftself-justification.