Skip to comments.The Bush Haters
Posted on 12/09/2003 2:21:44 PM PST by swilhelm73
Did you know that the Democratic party in the U.S. relies more heavily upon large donations from millionaires for its finances than the Republicans? The Republican party takes in a much larger proportion of its funds from small and modest donations, because its backbone is formed by the small businessmen and "sole proprietors" (barbers, shopkeepers, plumbers, etc.) of the American heartland. The Democratic party gets its strength from the millionaires in the communications industry, Hollywood, and other new technological elites.
These underreported facts do not serve the mythology of the American Left. The Left imagines that it is the populist party. But most journalists, professors, and other commentators on public affairs are considerably to the left of the American people. And wealthier, and highly educated in short, privileged. The "voice" of the Democratic party seems much more like the glitzy people "uptown" and in Hollywood than like the workers and middle class of Midland, Texas.
That is why, under the leadership of George W. Bush, the Republicans have gained control of not only the White House, but also the Senate, the House of Representatives, 28 of the 50 governorships (having won three out of four elections last month), and (for the first time in ages) a majority of the legislators in the 50 states.
So it is no wonder that a big story in the United States these days is "Bush-hating." The Democrats seem to be spinning crazily in pure fury at the president. Time magazine describes the president as a "polarizing figure." A small majority of Americans love him, Time says, but those on the leftmost side of the Democratic party positively hate him.
Why do they hate him? Some say he irritates them because he is a Yale elitist and a Connecticut plutocrat, others say because he is an unsophisticated lower-class Texas boob. Some say he is a clever schemer and liar, and others that he is a moron. Some say all these inconsistent things at once. The point is, they hate him and who cares exactly why?
Yet, I can see two reasons why leftists might really hate him.
Bush has stolen two things which the Democrats believe they own by right: the presidency, and the future.
Having finished on top in the Florida election by a small margin, the Bush team prevented the Democrats from stealing the election in the recount. But winning elections in a recount is a maneuver at which Democrats have been incomparably accomplished for generations. In most urban centers, the Democratic party controls the local workers who do the bulk of the counting and vote storage.
Therefore, Democrats felt the bitter loss in Florida with exquisite pain. The Republicans beat them on the streets, in the counting houses, and in the courts. That election belonged to them, Democrats think, and they have continued to cry out against a cosmic injustice.
After the election, each of the independent recounts of all the Florida votes showed that Bush had in fact won, with virtually the same margin as the election-night returns. But Democrats still feel they should have won, by a kind of cosmic right.
The second thing the Democrats think they own, by a kind of Hegelian dialectic, is the future. The Left has long believed that the Left defines the future, and points out the path of progress. In the past, moderate Republicans tended to respect this leftist claim, protesting only timidly, "Not so fast, not so much, not just yet." The Democrats got used to facing an essentially compliant, "me-too" opposition. They thought President Bush would be the same. He isn't.
That's why some Democrats call Bush "the most radical president in history," "the worst president [from their point of view] in a hundred years," a "disaster," and other such names.
It would take another column to show how Bush has cut off the future that the Democrats thought they owned, and how he dared to put the world (not just the U.S.) on an entirely new progressive path, both in domestic and in foreign policy. If he succeeds, the Democrats will be caught thinking in outmoded terms. In tax policy, in welfare policy, in medical care, and in support for democratic reforms rather than mere "stability"overseas, the very meaning of "progressive" will have been defined afresh. Failed Democratic programs will be revised, new directions will be set.
Of course, they hate him! He is the greatest threat to them in 100 years.
Not to be a stick in the mud- but since we have are indeed the majority how is it that Bush has expanded Federal power more than Clinton? Let's not salute Bush too much. There is much to criticize. Let's get him re-elected and hope he appoints judges that are solidly law reading interpreters and not left wing inserters. That is the only reason to vote for Bush (that and the Dems are children who can't be trusted with power.) Bush has hardly been a "conservative" President. Let's keep our eyes and minds open when it comes to Bush.
The education bill and the Medicare reform are all about giving people choices and demanding accountability. It's a different way to look at conservatism.
I don't know that I necessarily agree, but it does make one understand where Bush is coming from.
They already do. Really, what is so "progressive" about the ideas the Left trumpets? Nothing! It's all old-school, centrally-controlled social schemes that have been tried in failed in a number of different settings over countless years.
Say hello to my new tagline!
Well gee I guess the idea of you fighting the dems in the electoral arena never crossed your mind.
He is the greatest threat to them in 100 years.Since the days of McKinley, to be exact.
Like I said, then you should be trying to fight the dems in the political arena each day and not go into pity parties about this or that demo having the possibility of becoming President.
Bush has redefined conservatism. It is now not the process of cutting government and devolving powers; it is the process of installing choice and accountability into government even at the cost of allowing it to grow.
I see that. But I cannot grasp that as being "conservative". It isn't. It is slightly less a federal power grab than Dems would want but it is still advocacy of Federal control of local control.
I am not naive. This is the nature of politics. Bush can't just change things overnight (as some libertarians and Paleo Conservatives seem to think). Baby steps. I support Bush because that is the true conservative thing to do. He has to compromise with the powers that be in bloated DC. Let's just hope that when he wins re-election he appoints judges that will strike down much of the power the Feds have currently! I have faith in Bush on that.
Simply stunning! It looks great on you, too.... pretty soon everyone will want one :-)
Like many here on FR, with each post you reveal your ignorance and contempt for the concept of a representative republic. You want Bush to govern according to some list of principles to which you subscribe. You demand a principled leader who does not listen to the voters but does what you deem to be right. In other words you long for a dictatorship.
Bush is the perfect public servant. He will do what his bosses want done. If they want medicare to include prescription drugs, he will do his best to give it to them. All of the left, all of the center and even a bit of the right want prescription drugs included in Medicare. So Bush worked to enact it and got it done. That goes against every principle you believe in . But principles are not worth a warm pitcher of spit in a Representative Republic. Principles are only good in nations where there are rulers who rule by the dictates pf their conscience. The United States has no principled rulers. Its form of government does not allow them to succeed. This Free Republic only allows public servants who do the peoples will.
Try taking a clue!!! This Nation is and will remain a Representative Republic. Lincoln said it well 168 years ago.
Fools on the right have for all my lifetime been crying for a leader to do their will. It will never happen until they convince a majority to support their agenda. The only way to get an agenda enacted is to convince over half the voters to accept that agenda.
We are a nation whose government is run by public servants. They are not rulers. They serve at the pleasure of their bosses. You might ask Gray Davis how that works. And the real political bosses are and always have been a majority of the voters. No president will do what you want until you convince a majority of the voters to support your agenda.
I am not sure what you believe you? Does the Federal government have any limit to it's power in your thinking?
What happens when people who hate have no release for that hate once it is stoked to fire-branding proportions? Upon seeing Bush's popularity rise or at least remain stable, and upon seeing Dean going nowhere with the general population, what will hate-filled people do?
I think it portends some crazy hate-filled whacko who decides to take that hate and solve everyone's problem by himself.
There's no doubt that he has. But the real question is his motive. I'm worried because his early economic speeches were horrible.
Reagan spent a fortune to defeat the Soviets, but it paid off handsomely. The question is whether GWB is spending a fortune to defeat the communists within our borders. Like I said there is good reason to have doubts. OTOH, the Rats hate him. That's a good sign.
You still don't get it.
Governments have no power. NO government has ever had any power... no power at all. The people have the power. They give it to the government. You can't even see that the Soviet Union had no power. The day the people stopped supporting the Soviet Union, it ceased to have any power and collapsed.
You, like most people who can not see the forest for the trees, argue that governments have power. They have none except what the people give them. The King (Czar) of Russia was an absolute ruler until the people decided they would rather have communism and replaced him with Lenin.
And your belief in constitutions is silly. All the constitutions in the world can't keep a government in power.You spout platitudes about pieces of paper. Those pieces of paper you worship are of no more value than the German Constitution when the German public decided they wanted Adolf Hitler as Fuher. Hitler just tore them up.. with the public's approval... and those documents were gone. They were replaced with the Third Reich.
If we are a Constitutional Republic with a governing Constitution then why does that constitution mean what ever a majority of the nine justices say it means? How many times does the Supreme court have to rule the constitution says things eveyone knows it does not say before you learn it is what the judges say, not the words in the constitution that count.
You believe the bull crap they tell the suckers... No need to persuade the public... Just quote the constitution and look to the rule of law.
Enough, Go Away. "The People" decided nothing when it came to the Bolsheviks ruling them. If you believe that then you are indeed on the wrong site sir!
Unless choice and accountability return to the way in which Americans think about the relationship of government to the people, it will never be possible to move this country to smaller government. The Left has convinced large sectors of the American public that it isn't safe for them to make their own choices, that it's much better to have choices made for them by Nanny. Likewise, the Left has encouraged the idea that someone else is responsible for my life, and that if I fail or suffer or even have to change jobs, somebody has done me wrong -- "uncaring" Republicans or "the rich" or "corporate fatcats," yada, yada, yada.
So I see Bush's willingness to live with "big government" while trying to nudge it towards a greater recognition of choice and responsibility as a necessary move to re-educate the American people for liberty. As other posters have pointed out, there's no point blaming Bush -- what's needed is an electorate that wants smaller government, and that we don't have. Or rather, the Reagen Revolution and the 1994 congressional elections both show that Americans are not closed to the idea of smaller government, and can even be attracted by it, but they have only a very limited sense of what "smaller government" might mean.
The 90's welfare reform was a start. We now know that we will not have little children with swollen tummies on every street corner without the federal welfare entitlement. That was the most important conservative accomplishment of the nineties.
The big issue now is Social Security. This country really needs about twenty-thirty years seeing that ordinary people can handle individual retirement accounts and do well with them -- that would do more to make smaller government politically imagineable than any amount of libertarian rhetoric. Social Security is after all the symbolic center of the Left's myth that it isn't safe to make your own choices -- "if you do, you'll be turned out in the streets in your old age and have to go the poorhouse and live on gruel." Demystifying Social Security is a cultural prerequisite in the United States to moving toward smaller government.
I've been reading reports that the Bush people are actually planning to move on SS reform before the election and make it a campaign issue. That is truly bold and truly important.
The other case in point is Bush's commitment to cutting taxes. The fact is that low taxes do not automatically mean less government, since the economic growth encouraged by low taxes may actually increase revenue even when rates of taxation are lowered. But the commitment to low taxes says something that is even more basic than slowing the rate of government growth -- "the money you earn is yours, the government's claim to a portion of it has limits, and you can be trusted to use it in reasonable ways that will serve the common good in the end."
Where I disagree with Barone is the assumption that Bush doesn't care about reducing government. He has said repeatedly that the government is too big and I don't see any reason to doubt is sincerity. He probably isn't as anti-government as some folk on this forum -- his political ancestors are more Henry Clay and Daniel Webster than the radical Jeffersonians. But you don't have to be a Rothbard anarchist to believe that the Federal Government is bloated in ways that harm the country. However, if we accept the premise that one president cannot overturn the last 75 years-development of government in the United States, that there is no other road to smaller government than a long road, Bush's approach seems as reasonable to me as any other.
This Dumb ass war is the reason he made a deal with TK on the Education bill and did the same on this insance Elderly Drug bill! Also the reason he short changed conservative appellate nominnees! He keeps big government at home big and makes it even bigger while he gets his wars abroad! That is the way of the Welfare/Warfare state! That is the deal he has struck!
I don't think its worth shouting over this chasm. We live in different worlds, apparently, though I hope that we will intersect at the voting booth at least one more time.