Let America Be America Again

Thursday, July 26, AD 2012

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”

Robert Heinlein

Scott Brown is a largely pro-abort RINO, but he has come up with a campaign commercial in the above video which is devastating both to Obama and his opponent in the Massachusetts Senate race, Elizabeth “Fauxcahontas” Warren.  Warren came up with the business bashing meme that Obama disastrously latched on to, and Brown is ramming it down their throats.  By far the best campaign commercial I have seen this year.

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11 Responses to Let America Be America Again

  • Watching Obama, it occurred to me that he is playing up to the envy, greed and other lower instincts of the people. Sowing discord, chaos and promoting vice is not human. It is un-American.
    Here is one: “The duty of a PATRIOT is to PROTECT his country FROM its government.” Thomas Paine

  • I agree that this encapsulates what this election is all about.! Thanks for bringing it to our attention.

  • I am reminded of last Sunday’s first reading, in which Jeremiah warns about the shepherd who allows the flock to wander away from each other. That man in the White House wants to break up the flock that is America, pitting one against another. Envy and jealousy are not an ethical basis for public policy.

  • It is precisely that, and ONLY that theme that will send the President packing.

    Hammer the economy theme, hammer it, hammer it, hammer it.

    Bring every discussion back to it.

    If the President wants to talk about child birth, point out the plummetting birthrate due to the economy. If he wants to talk about immigration, point out the 23 percent unemployment among African Americans. If he wants to talk about cooperation in Washington, point out the failed bi-partisan stimulus bills.

    Hammer it, hammer it, hammer it.

  • There’s a trailer – speaking of America being America.

    http://abyssum.wordpress.com/2012/07/28/a-must-see-movie/

  • The Heinlein quote is both wrong and foolish.

  • The Heinlein quote is historically accurate Art and completely wise.

  • No, it is not. I am reading him literally even though it is a rhetorical flourish, because it miseducates.

    You had during pre-modern eras periods of advance and retreat in levels of prosperity. Robert Heinlein did not have a comprehensive understanding of why this occurred; serious students of economic history are uncertain about that. See Philip Daeleader on late antiquity and the early medieval period.

    As for the modern period, catastrophic retreats in levels of prosperity are generally coincident with wartime. You also see it in economies whose measurable aggregate production is heavily dependent on net exports of minerals and their national income fluctuates a great deal according to the terms of trade.

    You could say you saw it in Soviet Russia after the 1st World War and much of Eastern Europe after the 2d. You still have to try and disentangle the effects of the war from the effects of the abuse of manufacturers, financiers, merchants, artisans, and peasants.

    It should be noted that proprietors are not a ‘tiny minority’. They are certainly atypical, but the number of people in business for themselves full time is at any one time in the seven digits in this country. Being a notable in industrial history, whether your name is Carnegie or Jobs, is rare. The thing is, the benefits attributable to innovation in a discrete economic sector are often surprisingly small. It is the collective effect of many tiny efforts which comes to matter.

    We are not living in Roumania ca. 1946. The current regime’s regulatory practices and ham handed capital allocation will one supposes cause such injuries as the economy gradually comes to a point of stagnation. That modern industrial civilization will disappear is something we can be fairly sure will not occur. That 25 years worth of economic improvements will evaporate (as happened during the period running from the fall of 1929 to the spring of 1933) is also unlikely (and most likely to arise from trouble in the financial sector). The real threat is can be seen in the history of Argentina – decade after decade of minimal net improvement punctuated by political and economic crises which never seem to resolve anything in a salutary direction.

    Heinlein’s is an aynrandesque reverie and not true to our situation.

  • Like most disasters that confront humanity Art, poverty, after a certain technological level is achieved, is usually man made. Recent examples I can think of off the top of my head would include the expulsion of the Indians from Uganda and the expropriation of their property in 1972 which was a disaster for the Ugandan economy. Zimbabwe, one of the more agriculturally fertile regions in Africa, is now subject to recurrent threats of famine due to the fecklessness of the government of Robert Mugabe. The lamentable history of Communism is an example of Heinlein’s statement in action, except where there is a turning away from the doctrines of Marx as has occurred in China. Cuba is a prime example of what happens when a country drives away its business class.

    In our country there are complete fools, most if not all located in the Democrat party, who would love to give further proof to Heinlein’s observation. The Occupy movement has degenerated into bad farce, but the Democrats were initially quite happy with their 99%-1% jeremiads. California is a prime example of what economic quicksand an anti-business and anti-growth mentality can produce.

    A pro-business mentality is a rare thing in global history, and governments have often adopted policies that have destroyed prosperity. In the Church, sadly, it is not rare to see troubling manifestations of this type of anti-free enterprise mentality:

    http://the-american-catholic.com/2011/10/27/a-fisk-of-towards-reforming-the-international-financial-and-monetary-systems-in-the-context-of-global-public-authority/

    No, I think Heinlein is correct.

  • Your two examples include one of the most lunatic autocrats of the post-war period and another president-for-life quite possibly mad from tertiary syphilis. These are not common problems.

  • I would say Obama is a common problem Art. Oh wait, you weren’t referring to him? 🙂

Scott Brown: Good News for Obama 2012?

Wednesday, January 20, AD 2010

At first glance, it would appear that Scott Brown’s unlikely victory is bad news for President Obama’s long-term political future. Senator-elect Brown explicitly ran against the current health care reform bill, favoring federalist experimentation rather than a one-size-fits-all national approach. As health care reform was the central focus of President Obama’s first year in office, and Massachusettes is one of the most liberal states in the country, Brown’s victory there is a clear repudiation of the leadership of President Obama and Congressional Democrats during the past year. Nevertheless, I think a case could be made that Scott Brown’s victory will help the President in the long run. There are three main reasons:

1) Brown’s victory was too stunning to ignore. No one would have predicted it even a month ago, and I was still skeptical yesterday that Massachusetts was going to elect a Republican senator for the first time since 1972 – and to replace Ted Kennedy, of all people. Congressional Democratic leadership and the Administration will no longer be able to convince Blue Dog Democrats they know best and that Obama will be able to leverage his popularity to preserve their seats. That card has been played – not only in Massachusetts, but also in Virginia and New Jersey – and it wasn’t  a winner. This means that the Administration and the Congressional leadership will have to adjust their strategy, and pay more attention to voter sentiment. It’s probably too late at this point for this to help the Democrats much in November; they will take a well-deserved beating in this election. Nevertheless, it’s a lesson the Obama Administration will keep in mind going forward, just as the Clinton Administration pivoted after the Hillarycare debacle. President Obama will be forced to govern more like the moderate, fiscally responsible Democrat he campaigned as. And that is likely to increase his odds of re-election.

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8 Responses to Scott Brown: Good News for Obama 2012?

  • I think you may have a good point here. I don’t really see the GOP putting up a strong candidates in 2012 at this point, and as we saw with Clinton in the 90s, while partisans may not like it, the electorate seems to be quite happy with a president whose personality they’re fond of and a congress of the opposite party. Indeed, many Democrats now take a fair amount of pride in the fairly moderate legislation which made its way through in 94-00.

  • Well we shall see. I sort of disagree with Darwin that the GOP recruiting class of 2012 is not strong. I seem to be hearing different.

    In fact when we look at the last three elections NJ, VA, and now MASS it appears the canidiates have been very very strong. The VA Governors race was very very disciplined.

    THe questions as you point out is What will Obama do. Can he do a Clinton? I am not sure. One thing about the Obama adminsitration that has shocked me is how he acted as n EXECUTIVE. He basically made Reid and Pelosi co- Prime Ministers. Further Clinton had the experience of being chastized early on by the voters in Arkasnas. A lesson he learned from . Does Obama have that experience.

    We shall see

  • Let me just clarify: I think we may very well see strong GOP candidates for the house and senate in 2010 and 2012, I just don’t see a strong presidential candidate to unseat Obama.

  • Oh Ok. Well you might be right. Again 2012 is so far away anything can happen.

    Though I am gaining interest in this Governor from Indiana. I hear he is good and might sort of be the new fresh face.

  • Scott Brown for president 2012? Who could have predicted his win yesterday?

  • “I am gaining interest in this Governor from Indiana”

    You mean Mitch Daniels, who is creating quite a buzz. He seems to have done pretty well as far as keeping his state solvent despite the recession. A lot of Illinois residents wouldn’t mind borrowing him 🙂

    Don’t forget Tim Pawlenty or Bobby Jindal either.

    It seems as if ALL the strongest potential GOP contenders for 2012 are governors – can’t think of any Senators or Congressmen who stand out. Has that ever happened before?

  • The only difference between Scott Brown and Obama is the letter behind the name. They are both liberals.

The Massachusetts Miracle: What Does It Mean?

Wednesday, January 20, AD 2010

Well Massachusetts has elected a Republican US Senator for the first time in 37 years.  What does this political upset of the century mean?

1.   ObamaCare is dead.  Not only because the Democrats now lack 60 votes to invoke cloture in the Senate, but because opposition to ObamaCare was the signature feature of Scott Brown’s campaign and the results of this race in bluest Massachusetts will send chills down the spine of too many Democrats.

2.   We now have further evidence that the Democrats are looking at a political storm of the first magnitude in the Fall.  If a US Senate seat in Massachusetts isn’t safe for the Democrats, it is hard to imagine what seat in Congress outside of urban centers they can take for granted in November.

3.   The fundraising success of Scott Brown over the internet was astounding.  A demonstration that the internet fundraising effort of the Democrats in 2008 now has a GOP counterpart.

4.   Look for a wave of Democrat retirements in Congress as more Democrats decide that ending their political careers with a voluntary retirement is preferable to defeat.

5.   More Blue Dog Democrats in Congress will follow the example of Congressman Parker Griffith and announce that they are switching to the Republican Party.

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16 Responses to The Massachusetts Miracle: What Does It Mean?

  • President Obama took his election victory as an endorsement of an extreme liberal agenda.

    When people were just tired of Bush which Obama capitalized on.

    Now, even right before the results were announced, Robert Gibbs was announcing an even more “aggressive” and “vitriolic” agenda of pushing health care.

    I doubt they got the message.

    I’ve read on NBC and ABC that they refer to Tea Party activists as “extremists”.

    When the mainstream media is in cahoots with the Obama administration, I believe we may be marching towards the worst re-election campaign since Jimmah’ lost to Ronald Reagan.

  • One unfortunate (at least in my opinion it’s unfortunate) effect of the Mass. special election is that Romney now probably cakewalks to the GOP presidential nomination. Maybe I’m making too big a deal out of it since we’re still a couple of years away from the GOP primaries, but that was a huge swing of momentum Romney’s way last night.

  • Jay,
    I don’t think so at all. Romney’s absence from Brown’s campaign was conspicuous. Also, Romney was an elite candidate in 04, not the kind of retail politics-guy with Brown’s mass (no pun intended) appeal. I think it strengthens candidates with an emphasis on cost cutting (Indiana’s Mitch the Blade for VP?). I still don’t see any 2012 front-runner at all for the Republicans.

  • Romney’s a cool cat, but I am hoping for something significantly better.

    Gingrich is to wishy-washy.

    Huckabee is finished.

    McCain is a loser.

    Brownback is an opportunist and weak.

    Palin has “it”, but too many elites “pooh-pooh” her “smarts”.

    Pawlenty isn’t well-known enough.

    Pataki is a baby-killer and so is Giuliani.

    Thune, Pence, and Barber are unknowns.

    Jindal looks promising.

    Santorum is good but compromises his principles too many times.

    I’m holding out for Jindal, Thune, and Palin.

    Romney looks like “one” of the frontrunners, but he’s all for universal health care coverage, look at his RomneyCare in Massachusetts.

  • Its a victory, and that’s good. The progressive agenda might even hide out for a little while, but it will be back, and we can’t get complacent.

    They will use any tactic or strategy, however dishonest, to change this country into the progressive utopia that they envision. They’ve brainwashed the next generation with music and movies and they practically own the educational system, and run the courts.

    The only thing standing in their way is “we the people”, and our willingness to expose whats going on, even when most of the mainstream media refuses to. They have enough brainwashed zombies who think that America is a bad place to eventually get their agenda through, unless we gear up and stop it.

  • But Romney WAS conspicuously present last night. There’s a lot of talk going on right now about how his campaign team helped orchestrate Brown’s win and the important role Romney played behind the scenes.

    Unfortunately, that WILL play well with GOP primary voters, many of whom already rallied to Romney once in 2008 as the “anti-McCain”. I think the guy’s a fraud, but think he may have just notched the sort of win against the Obama team that will impress Republican primary voters.

  • Jay, I don’t see it. If you notice when Romney was introduced last night, the reaction wasn’t as loud as you would think. Sure he was cheered, but it felt muted. I think Romney might get a small boost, but it doesn’t seem like many people are really associating what happened last night with him.

  • We’ll see, Paul. I hope you’re right. But I’m guessing Kathryn Lopez and her crew will do their part to try to associate Scott Brown’s win with their beloved Mitt.

  • Romney’s people helped Brown prepare his strategy, and apparently Brown likes Romney (why else would he have Romney introduce him, and then call him out also during the speech). At the same time, 2012 is still a long way off. A lot can happen; hopefully someone better than Romney will emerge.

    I don’t really get the visceral dislike some people have for him, although I see why he doesn’t connect well. All politicians are frauds to some extent; some are better at concealing it than others. He’s not as good as some others.

  • Let’s face it, Scott Brown could just be Mitt Romney with a latex mask and some hair dye. Politically they are very similar. Personally, if Scott Brown thinks I voted for him because he drives a truck he’s dreaming, I would have voted for a brown paper bag over any Ma Democrat.

    Mitt Romney holds alot of sway here in Ma, as he won the 08 Republican primary. If Scott Brown goes out of his way to endorse Romney in the next repub primary it will probably mean that Romney helped him alot behind the scenes.

    Romney has little appeal to values voters, but hes seen as competent on the economy. If the economy and unemployment don’t get alot better, Romney will be strong contender in 012.

  • Actually, i would have voted for a brown paper bag full of dog poop and lit on fire before just about any Massachusetts Democrat.

  • Interesting that the GOP now has a state senator-come-U.S. Senator with potentially larger national ambitions.

    This win only changes the relationship between the two major parties. It does not change the trajectory of America overall, particularly in economic and foreign policy terms. If anything Brown is more hawkish than Obama, who for the most part has retained Bush’s foreign policy outlook.

    Anger and resentment drove this win, not Brown’s ideology nor even his policy positions (its should be noted that he DOES desire to expand health care, just not ObamaCare).

    Hopefully before people start voting for the GOP in droves they will quickly remember that they were the ones very much responsible for our current predicament.

    Personally I’m hoping for another attempt from Ron Paul in 2012. He will do much better this go around and can tug the GOP towards a proper, Constitutional position. Unfortunately I see little to no signs that the GOP is willing to give up its love for war-making and aggression.

  • Cupofwrath

    Sorry, Mitt doesn’t do porn, but from what I read, Scott Brown did (at least porn-lite for Cosmo).

  • Twice in one day!

    I agree with Henry again!

    Sorry, Mitt doesn’t do porn, but from what I read, Scott Brown did (at least porn-lite for Cosmo).

  • “Twice in one day!

    I agree with Henry again!”

    Two seals broken!

    In all seriousness, I think we would agree on most things, at least in the ideals, if not in how to execute them.

  • Sorry so late:

    “More Blue Dog Democrats in Congress will follow the example of Congressman Parker Griffith and announce that they are switching to the Republican Party”

    But even the devil can don a sheep’s clothing. Can we trust these ex-pats of the left? Seriously.

Massachusetts Predictions

Tuesday, January 19, AD 2010

Go here to see the last polls on the Senate race in Massachusetts.  The seat that is up has been in the hands of the Kennedy family since 1953, four years before my birth.   The last time the Republicans won a Federal senate race in Massachusetts was in 1972 when I was 15 years old.  Against all the odds Scott Brown has engineered the political upset of this century.  In November he trailed Martha Coakley by 30 points.  He has run a superb campaign and she has run an abysmal one, but the key issue has been his opposition to ObamaCare.  If ObamaCare is  a losing issue in Massachusetts, in what State in the Union can it be a winning issue?  Brown 52;  Coakley 47;  Kennedy 1.  That is my prediction.   What is yours?

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Now This, This Would be a Sign of the Apocalypse!

Wednesday, January 13, AD 2010

A Republican may be elected to serve out Ted Kennedy’s unexpired term?  It could happen! Public Policy Polling, a Democrat leaning polling outfit shows the election a toss up between the Democrat Coakley and the Republican Brown.  Scott Rasmussen, the best political pollster in the business in my opinion, shows Coakley up by two.  Last week he showed her up by nine.  On Monday Brown raised over a million dollars in one day in internet donations.

If Brown wins the Senate race in the Peoples’ Republic of Massachusetts, it will send a political shock wave across this country the like of which hasn’t been seen in many a year.  If Ted Kennedy’s senate seat isn’t safe, what seat is safe for the Democrats?  Oh, I don’t believe that I should call it Ted Kennedy’s seat per Mr. Brown.

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13 Responses to Now This, This Would be a Sign of the Apocalypse!

  • From where I sit, I do not think there is any chance Scott Brown will be elected. Massachusetts politics are too corrupt.

  • It is an uphill climb Zach, no doubt about that. It is interesting however that Massachusetts does have a history of electing Republican governors fairly recently, so the idea of a Republican winning statewide is certainly not impossible.

  • I don’t expect Brown to win, but then, I didn’t expect Corzine to lose in deep blue NJ either. If Brown comes within a couple of points of Coakley, Dems should still be very nervous. Coakley ran a dreadful campaign, because she expected it would be a waltz. She thought she wouldn’t have to fight for “the Kennedy seat” (ah, Massachusetts – or should I say Massachusettes, like the cool kidz do – once upon a time you rebelled against royalty). The fact that she does, in fact, have a battle on her hands is unnerving her.

    If Brown manages to pull it off, I shall develop a strange new respect for Massachusetts voters.

  • Eric

    It seems “you can’t vote for or support a pro-choice candidate” because “they are baby killers” and “supporting baby killers should get you excommunicated” might be countered with “He’s a Republican” and that’s good enough for some. It also suggests that much of that rhetoric is just political rhetoric, and not indicative of belief when there are these cheers for a pro-choice candidate. So you are right to point this out. Shows quite a few things all in one.

  • From what I can tell thus far, Brown is indeed, essentially, pro-choice.

    http://thephoenix.com/BLOGS/dontquoteme/archive/2010/01/04/scott-brown-s-abortion-problem.aspx

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/01/04/abortion_stances_of_brown_coakley_not_so_easily_defined/?page=1

    His support for minor pro-life initiatives notwithstanding, in my mind, a minimal pro-life position includes opposition to RvW.

    However, his opponent is also pro-choice, and apparently has a voting record more favorable to the abortion industry.

    In this case should Catholics vote for a “lesser evil” or abstain altogether? The ‘Catholic Answers’ voting guide says:

    “In some political races, each candidate takes a wrong position on one or more issues involving non-negotiable moral principles. In such a case you may vote for the candidate who takes the fewest such positions or who seems least likely to be able to advance immoral legislation, or you may choose to vote for no one.”

    “Not voting may sometimes be the only moral course of action, but we must consider whether not voting actually promotes good and limits evil in a specific instance.”

    http://thephoenix.com/BLOGS/dontquoteme/archive/2010/01/04/scott-brown-s-abortion-problem.aspx

    Tough call. Voting for the Democrat is clearly out. Voting for Brown? I wouldn’t. I would abstain. But by this criteria anyway, one might vote for Brown.

  • The Catholic Answers voting guide fails to meet Catholic moral standards. On the other hand, I thought people said you could never “vote for a pro-baby killer, even if it is the least of evils.” Now when you start reasoning “least of evil” allows prudential decision as to who one should vote for, then people who saw no practical difference between Obama and McCain were fine with voting Obama and not to be condemned as being “pro-death.” I say this not as one who voted for Obama, since I didn’t. I am just pointing out how it is always convenient there are always excuses given for Republicans. But if one “can never bend” then it would seem supporting a pro-choicer is a no-go, and one should either abstain from voting or vote for someone who is going to lose.

    Again, all this shows is the double-standards, nothing else.

  • Coakley is attacking Brown for being pro-life, which he is not:

    http://www.lifenews.com/state4720.html

    Coakley is in favor of partial birth abortions which Brown is against. If I were in Massachusetts I would vote for Brown, although my vote would actually be against Coakley.

    Here is a story exploring the abortion positions of Coakley and Brown.

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/01/04/abortion_stances_of_brown_coakley_not_so_easily_defined/?page=1

  • Coakley thinks that if you are a faithful Catholic you shouldn’t work in emergeny rooms because of emergency “contraception”.

    “Ken Pittman: Right, if you are a Catholic, and believe what the Pope teaches that any form of birth control is a sin. ah you don’t want to do that.
    Martha Coakley: No we have a seperation of church and state Ken, lets be clear.

    Ken Pittman: In the emergency room you still have your religious freedom.

    Martha Coakley: (…stammering) The law says that people are allowed to have that. You can have religious freedom but you probably shouldn’t work in the emergency room.”

    http://www.redmassgroup.com/diary/6604/coakley-you-can-have-religious-freedom-but-you-probably-shouldnt-work-in-the-emergency-room

    Man, if I were in Massachusetts I would crawl over broken glass to vote against this bigot.

  • “The Catholic Answers voting guide fails to meet Catholic moral standards.”

    Then which voter guide does meet them? I’m open to suggestions. How do Catholics – who care about the teaching of the Church, that is – in Europe or other countries where all of the candidates support abortion rights vote? Do they vote? If so, what is their criteria?

    “I thought people said you could never “vote for a pro-baby killer, even if it is the least of evils.”

    What “people” are you referring to?

    “But if one “can never bend””

    If one is obliged to vote, and all the candidates are pro-choice, then it can’t be “bending.” Some Catholics believe they have a moral obligation to vote for SOMEONE – some take it further and say there is an obligation to vote for someone who is likely to win, ruling out third party candidates who have no shot.

    I am not so certain about that. There are times when Acts 5:29 trumps Romans 13:1. This is possibly one of those times – to withdraw from the political process altogether.

    If there is a clear Church teaching on what one is to do in a situation where all of the candidates support an intrinsic evil, I would like to see it. I believe the CA voter guide was based on what JP II said in Evangelium Viate:

    ” In a case like the one just mentioned, when it is not possible to overturn or completely abrogate a pro-abortion law, an elected official, whose absolute personal opposition to procured abortion was well known, could licitly support proposals aimed at limiting the harm done by such a law and at lessening its negative consequences at the level of general opinion and public morality. This does not in fact represent an illicit cooperation with an unjust law, but rather a legitimate and proper attempt to limit its evil aspects.”

    My guess is that they believe this would apply to voters as well.

  • The Catholic Answers voting guide, I think, is based on a false understanding of how to apply natural law principles to specific situations and circumstances. It more or less sets up a proportionalist trap. In my view, it is no more logical than the voting strategy set up by Catholics United that does not understand the hierachy of values.

    If anything, there is a radical modern misunderstanding of the virtue of prudence, which is founded upon the edifice, which Pope John Paul II himself often referred to, of “right reason.” Since Machiavelli wrote The Prince, both virtue and prudence (which is a virtue, obviously) have been radically misunderstood.

    Nevertheless, Catholic Answers’ Voting Guide for “Serious” Catholics is not a magisterial document, which is evident, I think, in the defiencies in its philosophical presumptions and I personally don’t feel obligated to vote in accord with it. The pope’s encylical might have inspired the voting guide, but that doesn’t make it void of errors–not that you suggested anything to the contrary.

    Moreover, I see this growing trend of Senate Republicans with this view — Hutchison, Snowe, Collins. Moreover, I am more appalled that pro-life organizations such as the one in Massachusetts (endorsing Brown) might endorse such candidates in their races if the other person is “more pro-choice.” I would think it better not to compromise your principles and not endorse the less-than-stellar “pro-life” candidate and rather just emphasize how bad the pro-choice candidate’s record is. It really boils down to proportionalist tendencies, which in some respects is inevitable.

    I seriously am very sympathetic to the argument which due to current circumstances makes it “non-negotiable” for voting Catholics to vote Republican, but in effect, it turns the pro-life vote into what African Americans have become to Democrats — a bloc of “sure” votes where Republicans win office and by and large govern as if the very issues we voted for them on are non-issues. The next election they throw us the same old rhetoric and “renew” their committment, but nothing goes differently. The Republican strategist can measure that the most strident pro-life Americans will not vote for a Democrat and even if a nominal pro-life Republican is running, we will judge that it “better than nothing” and vote for the Republican anyway to stop the “worse policies” of the Democrat. This trend seems spiraling and self reinforcing, which I don’t see how we can upset the status quo or change the indifference of some, or even, many Republican elected officials without their losing, or electing those who will upset the status quo — but how can you tell? It’s very difficult.

    I am sure there is a lot of this, in which, you and I probably have acute agreement. My greatest issue, or rather my cynicism, is unlike with slavery or other issues in the past, is that contemporary politics has found comfort in the status quo on all sides of the contemporary moral issues to the chagrin of those who are powerfully convicted, one way or another, on such issues. In other words, with say, slavery, you know that your opponent will try to craft the law in conformity with their views on slavery — either total legality or total illegality. There was no “reducing the number of slaves” rhetoric or strategic incremental methods for bringing about its illegality. This is most obvious to me in the fact that the Republicans have replaced the majority of the post-Roe court or the less-than-desirable amount of pro-life legislation coming off of Republican-controlled committees in Republican-dominated Congresses and so forth. From a practical order, considering current political trends, practices, and circumstances, I don’t buy the Catholic Answers argument for reasons other my philosophical issues with it — it seems to me to just preserve the status quo. Nothing I’ve said means vote Democratic. It does unveil we’ve got a lot of work to do.

    The other difficulty I have — and this is personal — is that by my prudential calculation which I am obliged in conscience to follow is that a pro-choice Republican should not receive my vote, being such a worldview is, more or less, my political antithesis and following my views, a detriment to the common good. Does that mean vote for the pro-choice Democrat? Not necessarily.

    I am also very fascinated by the fact that for many Republicans his abortion stance is virtually a non-issue and they are advocating that he win to block the health care bill — largely a consequentialist line of reasoning, regardless of one’s views on the health care reform efforts. This is especially true when one considers the line of thinking that amounted to counter-efforts against the pro-choice Republican candidate running for the House in New York that met party opposition for being a “RINO.”

  • Eric,

    “Catholic Answers’ Voting Guide for “Serious” Catholics is not a magisterial document”

    No one, least of all myself, claimed that it was. The problem is that there does not appear to be a magisterial document that addresses this issue. We face a similar dilemma with torture, though in that case, I think it is more clear if one really bothers to look and reflect on all that has been said.

    “which is evident, I think, in the defiencies in its philosophical presumptions”

    It isn’t evident. That is the problem. Perhaps you could explain it again? That such a document would not be “void of errors” is practically a given – I only used it as an example. It is one of the more well-considered examples, too, so I shudder to think what some of the other voter guides looked like.

    “There was no “reducing the number of slaves” rhetoric or strategic incremental methods for bringing about its illegality.”

    Ha! I agree, but tell it to the neo-Confederate historians, whom a surprising number of Catholic conservative intellectuals appear to agree with. On this point I simply know the history too well – it was all or nothing for the South.

  • dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria!

    Great line, but I doubt the sequel will be any good:

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1289401/

    Enjoy!