May 8, 2008

In The Proverbial Nutshell…

…here is one place in which I believe, at least in recent decades, we conservatives have been deluding ourselves.

Granted, I firmly believe that the “silent majority” of right-thinking Americans referred to during the Vietnam era is still alive and well, our self-deception is in our belief that it is sufficient that we do our talking at the polls on Election Day.

The problem there is that in between mid-term and Presidential elections, the only “talking” that really gets done is between elected politicians. Granted, there are occasional, though few and far between, voter rebellions wherein We, The People intercede en masse, such as the thankfully aborted amnesty legislation a couple of years back, but for the most part, we just kinda’ sorta’ sit back in blissful unawareness or semi-awareness while the commie trash social progressives in Congress gradually assert their socialist political agendas, with either too much compromise or insufficient resistance from those on the right side of the aisle. By the time the next election comes up, these agendas, virtually all of which are contrary to the letter of the Constitution, are already carved in stone. The same goes for “earmarks”, the vast majority of which are little more than bribes from representatives to special interests within their respective constituencies to gain votes for reelection, virtually none of which benefits the American taxpayers as anywhere near a whole. But that’s okay, right? Just ask any politician (you’d probably have to get him/her drunk first, and even then he/she would want to check to be sure you’re not wearing a wire), if Congressman Shmoe wants to get the $36 million bucks for local project A, Congressman Bonehead will be happy to sponsor same in return for The Distinguished Mr. Shmoe sponsoring his own earmark for $41 million toward the latter’s own local industry. Look at all those megabucks corporate agri-businesses that benefit from subsidies that the small, struggling farmers they were originally intended for barely see, or the same for political agenda-based venues like NPR, or the National Endowment For The Arts. Has anyone asked We, The Voters lately if we wanted our taxes to subsidize or otherwise support these institutions?

No, no one has, yet earmarks go on and laws are passed whether we like them or not, whether they are Constitutional (within the purview of our elected officials to even discuss, let alone pass) or not, the overwhelming majority of them drifting in a decidedly leftward direction no matter who we on the right elect to represent us in Washington.

This November, we have no recourse but to vote for John McCain, not because he is even remotely the right candidate from a conservative perspective, but because he’s not as bad as either of the two jamokes vying for the Democratic nomination.

This time out, our options are possibly the absolute worst in my lifetime to date, but what the hay? No matter who wins the White House, the following two years will simply be “business as usual”, the tenacious left sneaking their agendas into the mix, the complacent right ho-humming and making concessions, lining up their ducks for their next reelection campaigns.

No, I’m afraid that speaking our piece by means of the vote alone doesn’t carry the weight it once did and I’m even more afraid that it never will again.

by @ 6:55 am. Filed under Opinion
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17 Responses to “In The Proverbial Nutshell…”

  1. Always On Watch Says:

    This November, we have no recourse but to vote for John McCain, not because he is even remotely the right candidate from a conservative perspective, but because he’s not as bad as either of the two jamokes vying for the Democratic nomination.

    I feel the same way.

    However, if McCain chooses Islamist-enabler Condi Rice as his running mate, I don’t know how I’ll be able to vote for him!

    I’ve never felt so disconnected from our political leadership–including our Congress. We need a stateman to come riding over the horizon.

  2. BB-Idaho Says:

    The “megabucks” NPR receives from the Feds is about 2%.
    Half their income is from station fees, another third from the likes of the Joan Krock Foundation, ADM, All State, Merck, the MacArthur Foundation and my measly
    $50 a year. See, things aren’t as bad as you thought.:)

  3. Ken Taylor Says:

    This follows several comment conversation that you an I have had before. We have forgotten that we are the power and true voice of this Nation and NOT those in Washington, (I beleive that the cities name sake would disown the city if he saw politcs now).

    We proved that our Constitutional ownership of this Nation still works when we rose and spoke out as one about the amnesty bill last year. We are still the power and those in DC know it. But they also know that we all too often sit back and let things ride until election time after they have pandered to voters with pork to get their vote.

    Then return after elected to the same garbage they had participated in between elections. Our Founders intended for the people to be activists. They gave us that legacy by example and in writing as they forged within the Constitution the means for the people to be activists in the running of our country. Unfortunatly we have given up that Constitutional heritage and allowed Washington DC to control the game.

    We still can take it back but do the majority of Americans have the WILL to do so ? That is where I have my doubts! We who partcipate in the process by blogging, contacting our Representatives, speaking out at every opportunity are in the minority and THAT my friend is NEVER what our Founders intended for us!

  4. NH Meri Wido Says:

    …Seth, as you know I’m a conservative Democrat…and now it seems that in many ways I’m more conservative than many of the Republicans out there…what a surprise!!!
    You and I have discussed the following as to my mind set to vote for the lesser of the evils (as both of our political parties have done their damndest to scrape the bottom of the barrel) and McCain received my vote as of today since I vote by absentee ballot.

    Back in the small town in New Hampshire, where I spent 20+ years, the natives made their displeasure known to the public at large by simply ignoring the list of candidates (whether state, local, or national) and wrote in their choice of person…Mickey Mouse was always a popular candidate (me…well I always wrote Adali Stevenson in…and appending the following note in tiny print so it could be read “over 20 years dead and still the best choice given the choices you’ve dredged up from the barrel.” Some years it was read aloud as results were given on the local level (ours were televised on the town’s local cable station).

    I would have gladly voted for Tom Tancreto (not sure of the spelling)…but he tucked his tail in and ran away!

    I was in a quandry and opted for the old adage of “better the devil you know….” and so it was McCain as the only sane choice.

    Your loyal readers need to begin some sort of action to:

    1. get rid of the electoral college as it would be very nice to actually have the popular vote count without anyone assuming that they need to correct any vote given.

    2. Find a candidate that can appeal to the vast majority of voters (fiscally conservative and socially moderate rather then so far to the right that they’re unable to attract cross-over voters.

    3. Support and advertise by word of mouth, a candidate that is morally and ethically straight with the voters and isn’t seeking votes with forked tongue. If they make a promise then they have a moral obligation to the voters to keep that promise!

    4. Seek a candidate that won’t turn tail and run at the slightest provocation as TT did…

    Sorry to get on my soapbox but the last decade or so have shown that Ben Franklin was 100% correct regarding political representatives and revolution.

    “Politics is not a spectator sport”

  5. Seth Says:

    Sorry about the delay, friends, but N.Y. has a way of keeping me away from my hotel (& therefore my computer) for lengthy periods, and getting on line the last several days has been a challenge of sorts. :-)

    AOW –

    I dearly hope Condi stays as far away from the Veep’s job as possible.

    When she was first made SecState, I was pretty pleased…Until, that is, her true colors came to light.

    Obama said one thing right — we need change. Change, like his and Hillary’s ilk getting out of politics and staying out of politics, like maybe We, The People voting out every last one of those opportunists and parasites in Congress and replacing them with newbies who haven’t become part of the machine and still remember whom they work for.

    BB –

    Radio air time is expensive. I wonder what that 5% comes out to.

    Point is, Govt should subsidize 0%. Look at it this way: While the port side of Congress rails against conservative talk radio’s huge success vs liberal talk radio’s massive failure and claims they want to “level the playing field”, our taxes are only supporting NPR, while conservative talk radio carries its own weight. The marketplace rules! :-)

    Ken –

    Therein lies the problem: The majority of right thinking Americans seems to have simply shrugged and said, “What the hell, the government’s gonna do what the government’s gonna do, there’s nothing we can do about it”, like “You can’t fight City Hall.”

    It took a major issue like the amnesty bill to bring enough voters out of the wood work to register the will of the people. Meanwhile, all the agendas of “lesser” import slip right on by, and they accumulate until things have changed for the worse right under our noses. Most Republican politicians have already proven that we can’t count on them to mind the store for us.

    If our founders could see us today, even though they’re dead, they’d be heartbroken. :-(

  6. Seth Says:

    NH MW –

    I can’t see much to disagree with in your comment. The Electoral College was intended to give a more representative voice to smaller states, but I’m with you (almost, still thinking it out) on the popular vote issue, especially as a conservative voter who has lived in North Carolina.

    The Democrats therein have carved the state up into districts in such a way as to divide local conservative majorities into minimal populations vs larger Democrat populations in the same districts, and this is not an unknown practice elsewhere, on either side of the political equation. The popular vote might make a difference in that regard.

    “Politics is not a spectator sport”

    Amen to that. If only more non-liberals paid attention to that adage!

    Liberals are the most vocal political force in America today, the perfect example of the squeaky wheel getting the grease. Whenever a conservative voice is raised, it is shouted down, no debate, no reasonable evidence presented to the contrary, simply shouted down.

    Those among us who are willing to fight are vastly outnumbered, but we don’t give up. If only more right thinking Americans would get up on their hind legs…

    The hard part about finding an honest, truly patriotic candidate is that very few honest, patriotic people seem to want to get involved in the brutal quagmire that is our political system. No matter what most of the usual suspects promise when they campaign, we simply can’t count on it and in many ways that applies to both parties: Look at Hussein Obama, for example. When he first announced his candidacy for POTUS, he said his first order of business would be to pull our military out of Iraq. Since then, realizing that this only resonated well with the far left, he has eased back from that agenda and, like Hillary, avoided the issue wherever possible. In other words, it’s not about his beliefs one way or the other, it’s about getting elected.

    Same thing with McCain — he sure has modified a lot of his own beliefs of late, tailoring them to try to appeal to a conservative base he only has by default.

    I was disappointed that Tancredo gave up so easily, but I could see why he did: The liberal media saw him as the left’s worst nightmare, so they all but ignored his existence while giving heavy coverage to those with less conservative agendas. While Tom was still in the running, nine out of ten people I talked to had never even heard of him.

    That said, sadly enough, the mainstream media has a great deal of control over who gets to the general election and who doesn’t. McCain’s there because his agendas are more acceptable to the far left than any of the other Republican candidates’ were.

    Nothing like a fair and balanced media, right? Had Tom Tancredo been involved in a sex or corruption scandal, he’d've had more media coverage than Hillary!

  7. NH Meri Wido Says:

    Seth, a few comments on your comments if you will indulge me.
    1. Your comment as to the reason for the creation of the “Electoral College was intended to give a more representative voice to smaller states…”, a very smart young woman by the name of Anya Forman, wrote for ‘The Young Jeffersonian’ in New York City in the early mid 1950s, and in one article cited the writings of (I believe it was) Thomas Paine as making an obscure comment on the reason for the establishment of said college was “to correct” the voters if their choice was in error….so its (the EC) reason for existance is questionable. From past history though, I see the later being more the norm for that august body rather than the former.

    2. Your comment on “Liberals being the most vocal political force in America today,” and the squeaky wheel getting the grease…”, failed to take into account that when a loud outcry of the conservative voice was raised, it wasn’t shouted down, and we got Newt Gingrich whose “contract with America” was a rather huge lie from beginning to end. The GOP flew with his various promises and not a word to the people that voted for him that in fact he had spewed lies….because of NG more left of center liberals became involved and learned to shout louder and tell grander lies. Therefore, conservatives should raise their glasses to Newt in thanks for being the spark that motivated the LOC Liberals to action.

    3. As to Politics not being a spectator sport…you already know that I may talk the talk…but I’ve walked the walk also (11+ years count for something).

    Lastly, no matter which tag you support it doesn’t mean that a straight party line vote should ever be cast (which happens all too often as too many voters are just bone lazy). Voters need to take each and every person running for office, evaluate their past record, hear what they’re saying, and only then, make a decision to gift them with a vote.

  8. Seth Says:

    NH MW –

    1. I don’t see where the electoral college has corrected much in the way of wrong choices by voters — B.J. Clinton springs to mind here, as does Jimmuh Cahtuh — but I know you disagree with me that Jimmuh was a disaster as President, per a conversation some time ago.

    However, electoral votes do give more voice to the common interests of voters in, say, Rhode Island in the sense that a majority U.S. vote would pretty much bury the amount of votes coming out of that tiny state.

    2. The Contract with America started out in good spirit, but, as I’ve posted here in the past, the Republicans in Congress soon became complacent with their majority and got too big for their britches as such, forgetting exactly who it was that put them there and kept them there, and at whose pleasure they serve. Republican voters lost all patience with these critters and, in November 2006, a few million didn’t bother voting, hence the present Democrat majority. So I can’t completely disagree with you on this point. I can only hope that this November, having seen what not voting hath wrought, these folks will get their touchases back to the polls.

    3. Unfortunately, all too many voters on either side of the aisle are lazy in that way. The result is eighth rate candidates being elected and reelected while the few with any promise are ignored. Again, this has a lot to do with the media, upon whom most of the country depends for information. Because of this, the MSM pretty much controls elections simply by controlling the content of that information.

    That is why I rarely take opinion polls seriously, on the principle of “garbage in, garbage out”. If people aren’t getting all the information they need to develop informed opinions, then their opinions, while relevant toward the political ends of the media, are all but worthless where reality is concerned.

    The liberal media rarely if ever tells the voting public about bills being voted on (in) that they feel might provoke a conservative backlash of any kind. To that end, stealth is better. How many wasteful earmarks, for example, do we read about in the local paper or hear about on the news? Once in a blue moon something really outrageous will emerge, like the “Bridge To Nowhere” earmark or the Amnesty bill and the John Doe clause that provoked enough voter outrage to find millions of Americans flooding politicians’ in-boxes, fax machines and telephone lines with “get it right or start typing your resume” messages.

    Most of the B.S. slides by, however, virtually unreported, bringing us everyday closer to a country that resembles the U.S., as was intended by the founding fathers, less and less.

    Consider all the Americans who work their tails off all day while raising families, worrying about getting all the bills paid, etc. How many of these people do you think see themselves as having the time to take to analyze each and every candidate’s voting history, etc? It’s much quicker to look at a race horse’s past performances in The Racing Form®, LOL.

    While I believe they should make the time to really learn whom they’re voting for, I’m realistic enough to know that it just ain’t gonna happen, and that because of this, as I’ve quoted before several times in a few different places, I believe that Richard Harris said it best:

    “Don’t let it be forgot
    that once there was a spot
    for one brief shining moment
    that was known as Camelot.”

  9. BB-Idaho Says:

    While I’m being progagandized by NPR, I’m eagerly awaiting your cuisine evaluation of the Ethiopian place down the street…in particular the injera which, us Idahoans understand, is used as both plate and fork. The experience is followed by a libation of tej and…who knows, you may be
    headed for Addis Ababa?

  10. Seth Says:

    BB –

    I had never heard of tej, thank G-d. I just looked it up and it sounds like a truly vile concoction. That tree bark is involved does not surprise me, as it’s probably a staple over there.

    The only way I’d eat at an Ethiopian restaurant would be as part of a hunger strike.

    …the injera which, us Idahoans understand, is used as both plate and fork. ROTFLMAO!

  11. Always On Watch Says:

    I just linked to your essay.

  12. Seth Says:

    AOW –

    Great post over there, and Hawkins said it a lot better than I did, so did Mustang!

    Thanks for linking. :-)

  13. Shoprat Says:

    Maybe here is part of the answer

    (Just ignore the hate-mongering by one of the more long-winded commentators.)

    It may be just part of it but it could work.

  14. Seth Says:

    Shoprat –

    It does sound like the best foot put forward yet in the right (pun intended) direction.

    I’m not yet settled here in N.Y., but when I am, I will bring this to some people now in the local Republican Party hierarchy with whom I grew up and with whom I need to be reacquainted. Maybe we can get something going here.

  15. GM Roper Says:

    Seth, this is a really great post. Thanks!

    On the other hand, you wrote: “he’s not as bad as either of the two jamokes” Its not nice to insult jamokes by compairing them to Clinton or Obama.

  16. Seth Says:

    GM –

    Thank you!

    LOL, comparing anybody to Clinton and Obama is an insult worthy of a duel.

    My sincere apologies to jamokes everywhere. :-)

  17. The Republicans Online Says:

    The Secret Of Voter’s Satisfaction

    Reading this post it made me think that there would always be a feeling at part of the voters, maybe a bigger part than we think, that their influence over politics is limited to the elections and most of the time politicians do what they do as part of…