by John Q. Public [Defiantly Right] | I am afraid that this post will offend my fellow cobloggers, all of whom are lefties. Well, so be it. This is another issue I feel strongly about: the superior power of Republican 'tough love' to repair our damaged society.
My lefty cobloggers have been roughing up John McCain all day about his campaign ad proving that Obama is indifferent to wounded troops and who---unlike John McCain, I'm sure---doesn't show up for committees. I must beg to differ: I liked it. I thought it was hard-hitting, aggressive, and manly, like a sucker punch.
Democrats seem to think a campaign should be about issues. What they fail to grasp is that issues are boring. Look at Al Gore and John Kerry. Why do they think almost half the country preferred Bush?
The reason is that he had a message and he sold it: 'I'm the decider. If you elect me, you won't have to listen to a lot of boring talk that scares you about things that make you uncomfortable, like global warming, the falling dollar, companies moving overseas and outsourcing all their American jobs, the daily violence in Iraq, the expense of health care and the lack of health care insurance. or the so-called 'housing bubble.'
Bush understood the American mind. We have enough to worry about; we wanted a president who would accentuate the positive and make light of our fears, such as his classic photo of himself looking under his bed for the WMD and 'Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter.'
He knows that you can't solve problems by thinking about them. You have to have trust in God and the free market. Between them, they eventually winnow out the weak and the decrepit. The way to avoid being winnowed out is to be strong. Plus, Americans like presidents who can make funny jokes.
John McCain, who for years worried conservatives by his 'maverick' views, should be commended for his adoption of a truly right-wing platform. It suits him. He will be a kindly (if irascible) grandfather to the nation----the sort who won't help you out of a mess because then you never learn your lesson. He'll teach America to stand on its own two feet again instead of expecting the government---which no longer has any money anyway---to help out.
Nowhere in the Constitution are you guaranteed any help by the government. Instead, the government is supposed to make war---which McCain seems certain to do---and to make it easier for states to stop people from making decisions that traditional Americans don't like. What use are our precious freedoms if someone whose skin color, religion, or lifestyle choices offends you can move in right next door to you?
Like all Republicans, he understands that life is a paradox and that in order to make peace you sometimes have to make war. He likewise understands that the best way for ordinary Americans like you and me to achieve success is to let us keep more of our own money and pay for our own food, health care, and retirement expenses. Knowing that only two paychecks stand between ourselves and homelessness and that we'll die if we don't work hard so we can pay our medical bills teaches us all that there are consequences to our decisions.
Finally, he understands that the best way to build a proud and independent citizenry is to teach people not to expect any safety nets. There are no safety nets in nature.
Now he has decided that his earlier position on affirmative action was probably a mistake. He also admits that he has changed his position, showing that he is honest and open about his changes of mind.
McCain has long opposed quotas but his new support for ending affirmative action programs which stop short of quotas puts him at odds not only with Democratic rival Barack Obama but also with the Arizona senator's own views in 1998.
Back then, when the legislature in McCain's home state of Arizona considered sending the voters a measure to end affirmative action, McCain spoke out against it calling it "divisive."
McCain's campaign does not dispute that the Arizona senator spoke out against the 1998 effort to end affirmative action in his home state.
When asked about the apparent change in position, a McCain spokesman was not able to distinguish the two measures.
"I do not have a firm enough grasp on the historical and relevant context of McCain's remark in 1998 to give you the pushback that this question deserves," McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds told ABC News. (Political Radar)
His new position is that Arizona should end affirmative action. This is not, as some argue, because he isn't concerned with the plight of African-Americans. He is concerned. But he knows that the best way to improve their lot in life is to tell them to pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
This is why 'John McCain reversed himself on affirmative action and endorsed for the first time a proposed state ballot measure which would end race and gender-based affirmative action in his home state of Arizona.' (Political Radar) He has now realized that if anything it is white men, not women and minorities, who are discriminated against. Nevertheless, he isn't setting up any affirmative action programs for us---he's just restoring a level playing field. I think we can all agree that all the old injustices and inequalities have disappeared.
This is another instance of 'tough love.' As somebody, I forget who, once said: all Americans are equal but some are more equal than others. People who are in the 'more equal than others' category can achieve success---but they'll have to go about it the old fashioned way, through hard work, regular church attendance, and sacrifice. It's time people learn that we were not put on this earth for pleasure, but to work, work, work. Those who do will get rich and be successful. Free market forces---in which McCain retains his childlike faith--- assure this.
Note that Obama, who has traditionally taken positions that are as conservative as McCain's, has an option to follow his lead. As Andrew Sullivan suggests, Obama could simply decide to side with free will, personal responsibility, and equality. Apparently Obama himself has spoken out against affirmative action. Sullivan, who sometimes pretends to be a conservative, has some advice for him:
In an ABC interview last year, Obama said AA should be a "diminishing tool" for achieving racial equality. In his Philadelphia speech, which was framed around working-class racial solidarity, he specifically acknowledged the "anger" and "resentment" AA has caused. If he were to call McCain's bluff and come out in support of phasing out racial and gender preferences, Obama could erase a potential wedge issue for the fall. But his response today was less than encouraging...
Obama could respond by making some sort of grand gesture in favor of reforming AA. I've always thought that Obama, with his symbolic story and "Yes We Can!" rhetoric, will be the president to end racial preferences (a policy that has to end at some point, whether you support it or not). Who else would have the political and moral capital to do so?
I admit, I hadn't thought of it like that. If Obama is elected, will he prove that African-Americans are now on an equal par with white Americans and can be assumed to have no disadvantages? If so, that's a point in his favor. How can all those kids growing up in ghettoes claim to be at any disadvantage any longer if America elects an African-American president? I admit I hadn't thought of it that way. If we could eliminate all this talk about racial inequality, it would be much easier for white men to get jobs.It is not, as John Kraus, spokesman for the liberal Ballot Initiative Strategy Center argued, a 'pander' to skeptics on the right, but a concession by McCain that his previous position was wrong. While I used to be skeptical, I salute him for recognizing the error of his ways. To change your position to placate your potential constituents is a sign of a strong candidate who doesn't mind being called a flip-flopper. What's important is that he has flipped to the right side of the fence.
Bloggety goodness at Memeorandum
APOLOGIES TO MR. SULLIVAN, WHO IS CORRECT, OF COURSE. Satire's getting harder and harder to pull off--and we're just beginners.
Though we strongly disagree with Mr. Sullivan about affirmative action, Mr. Public was satirizing the sort of far right blogger who finds a justification for his wrong opinions even in very rationally expressed views that coincide only slightly with his own, such as Mr. Sullivan's.
Everything Mr. Sullivan says in his post is correct as a response to this sort of thinking.
Maybe satire is really dead because there is no wrong opinion, no matter how extreme or looney, that doesn't appear somewhere on the internet. I'm not sure it's possible to be sufficiently over the top anymore for people to recognize satire.
Or maybe it's simply that satire can only be mastered by the truly gifted. JQ would never claim to be that. Fortunately, he HAS no day job.