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Thursday, May 3, 2012

How We Win Every Debate, And Still Lose Elections.

Here we are, in the midst of tumultuous time concerning our national identity.  Our nation is deeply divided along ideological lines, polarized between left and right.  It has been this way since the campaign and election of 2000, and save for one event, Americans remain more divided today, than at any time in my half century of memories.  So listen when I tell you, that is not necessarily a bad thing.  Our founders had some pretty good ideas when creating the republic that they had envisioned for us.  One of their ideas was to separate the powers generally associated with political administration.  With three separate but equal branches of political power, no one branch would be able to inflict itself upon the governed completely unchecked by the other two.  Another of the good ideas that our founders had, was to build gridlock, (yes that very same instigator of endless whining on almost every Sunday Morning political talk show,) inherently into the system.  This guarantees that the political minority would always be protected to their rights of life. liberty, and property, even if the majority one day decided that they wanted to take those things away, even if it were to pay for universal health care, or any other commodity determined to be a basic human right by any interested group during some particular moment in time.  (I personally can not wait until Cuisinarts are determined to be a basic human right, and given similar status as housing, food, and health care.)

Our nation right now can not collectively decide, without some nasty infighting, whether we wish to be a nation which values economic and social freedom, or whether we would like to give those things up in order for the government to provide us with all of our basic needs from cradle to grave.  We can not decide if we would like to be a society where we are free to determine our own destinies, complete with the consequences of failure as being a part of that proposition, or if we would like to have our intellectual superiors in the government determine and then inflict upon us what their concept of our best interests might happen to be.  If you happen to believe that the, "conventional wisdom," has the right of it, then you believe that a vast majority of Americans have no opinion on the matter at all and just want the two sides to compromise with each other, sing kumbayah, and shelve the ideological debate for another day, way off in the future.

I say let's have this fight already and let's make this decision.  In every credible poll of Americans, 40% of us view ourselves as conservatives, and 20% of us self identify as liberals.  That is to say, a vast majority of Americans want to have a free market economy, where each of us is mostly left alone by the government, and free to choose our own success, risk failure, and the consequences that goes with that freedom.  A distinct minority wishes to have the government provide everything, including relief of the consequences suffered from poor decision making.  Make no mistake about it, when we hear wonderful sounding snippets on Sunday Morning about what a sweeping conservative victory in the midterm elections really means, you can bet your bottom dollar that it will be utter nonsense.  When Americans switched a record number of House seats, 7 Senate seats, out of 34 by the way, a ridiculous number of Governor's chairs, and an unbelievably large number of State Legislature Seats, roughly 700, that did not in fact mean that Americans wanted compromise to then inflict the very same agenda upon us as the direction we were already headed in.  They wanted to serve the current powers that be with a cease and desist order, or more to the point, gridlock.

For those of you who are mad at the GOP controlled House because they have not been successful yet in completely stopping spending and or removing the bevy of newly passed moronic regulation that has choked our economy, I have a special message for you.  I apologize in advance for the lack of diplomacy you are about to experience.  You are being intentionally thick.  We are in this mess for several reasons.  One of those reasons is that we have strayed from our principles and gone for the soft middle of the road victories and sent moderates to get elected regardless of whether they were truly representative of our values.  Another reason is that we stayed home and did not vote in too many elections.  The House GOP controls exactly one half of one third of our federal government.  If they fight to the bitter end and refuse to pass a budget accepted by the Liberals in charge, that will only result in a continuing resolution which according to the law known as baseline budgeting, will see an automatic increase in government spending each and every year.  They, and I wish to make this perfectly clear, have done as well as we could have ever hoped to have them do, under John Boehner's leadership.  Every penny of spending under a 5% increase in federal growth under Boehner's watch is in fact a penny in victory for our side.  If we want to put an end to this idiocy, we need to win elections, and a lot of them for people other than Democrats.  We need to fight to have Conservatives be the alternative on each ballot to the liberals running.  Our current woes relate to having lost several election cycles in a row, and one victory was never going to be enough to completely turn things around.  When I read and hear my conservative friends say things like, well I am tired of always having a Rino nominated, so I am staying home on election day, it literally blows my mind.  Really, you want 4 more years of this?  Who knows what damage Barack Obama and his band of merry Marxists can inflict upon us if given the opportunity of 4 more years?  Want to know why I don't care who might seek the nomination in 2016?  It is because if Mitt Romney is not running as an incumbent at that time, we may very well not have a country to save any longer.

One of the ways I know that our side is better at debating, is the desperation of the straw men, non sequiturs, ad hominems, etc. which are put out into the cosmos by our adversaries.  When I was a youth, I used to read about the Soviets who had the political courage to label any one who disagreed with their system of having some self anointed political elites running a top down command society as being mentally ill.  If you did not have the view that the Marxists were running the perfect Utopian society, well then it was off to the State mental institution in scenic Leningrad/Stalingrad/St. Petersburg, for you. That my friends is the ultimate in ad hominems.  Don't listen to the likes of Milton Friedman, Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, Veronique De Rugy, after all, they must be crazy.

Now it is true that this study, paid for by your tax dollars incidentally, hails to us from the ancient date of 2003.  (By the way, if you are interested in reading it, you will need to either enlarge the text from the pdf or get a magnifying glass.)  I have seen several iterations of this argument masquerading as objective fact recently.  MSNBC, and all of the usual suspects have been running with a story of some leftist Social Psychologist from that bastion of great thought, the University of Oregon who is pretty much parroting this study.  Also worthy of note, they've thrown Ronald Reagan, Barry Goldwater, and every Republican into the same pool as Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini.  Never mind the fact that both of these evil despots inflicted systems of complete governmental control of everything and ran the prime examples of centrally planned top down command economies, it seems as though anyone deemed evil now belongs on the political right. So, Socialism is on the left, and National Socialism is on the Right, simply because they do not want Hitler playing for their team.  I guess I don't want him either.

I guess the point is, if leftists can not win in the arena of ideas, they will simply declare us all crazy, the debate to be over, and call it a day.  That does not mean that we have to accept the premise though.  Which brings us to point number two of my title premise. Not accepting the premise is a piece of brilliance mastered by Rush Limbaugh, Andrew Breitbart, Newt Gingrich, and Michelle Malkin.  We don't all need to be pop culture warriors out there, but we need to pay attention to the questions being asked and the framework given to us as the starting point for debate.  Have a listen to Michelle Malkin from last night on Hannity with Juan Williams.



The true genius of Andrew Breitbart was not only that he was able spot the fallacy of the liberal premise, but that he was able to articulate that fallacy and highlight its absurdity in an entertaining fashion. Newt Gingrich has the same gift of intelligent articulation of that absurdity, but his particular gift sees him articulate it in a serious but still easy to understand manner. Michelle Malkin just pretty much blows Juan Williams out of the water on this one. We have all heard the oft repeated statements of how we Tea Partiers are inherently racist in our message and beliefs. What we haven't seen or head are any real live examples of said racism. Yet, even after we've heard it and refuted it, even to the point of exposing a large number of liberal trolls pretending to be Tea Partiers while espousing the cliched mantras they wished projected upon us, we are still finding this bit of nonsense to be the main talking point of almost every single discussion involving the Tea Party today.

We have reached a point in our national discourse where we actually do live in the Twilight Zone. Objective facts are considered an obstacle to fruitful discussion, and not the basis for rational thought. We need to find a way, and quickly I might add to use the same techniques of the masters when dealing with these people. We will never win the debate against the liberals if we accept the defacto defeat embedded in each and every one of their statements. Andrew Breitbart knew how to dismantle that, but he was not the only one. If we simply start to refuse every single premise, that will be a great start.

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