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This thread has degenerated into a flamewar. No more replies. Sheesh.
Skip to comments.Gap widening between Bush and conservatives
Posted on 01/23/2004 5:23:57 AM PST by Apple Pan Dowdy
I thought President Bush's State of the Union address was fine. It wasn't outrageously long. He drew a bright line between himself and his critics on the war in Iraq, the Patriot Act, Social Security Reform, etc. He delivered it well, and the nudity was tasteful and integral to the plot.
As luck - or bad timing - would have it, I was invited to Manhattan to address the New York State Conservative Party right before the president addressed the nation. It seemed only fitting since the subject of my speech was the conflict between Bush's "compassionate conservatism" and traditional conservatism. You see, conservatives in New York City have suffered more and for longer than conservatives in the rest of America. Trust me, I grew up on New York City's Upper West Side. We felt like Christians in Ancient Rome.
Well, after three years with George W. Bush at the helm, many conservatives are starting to feel like we've been sent to the catacombs. Don't get me wrong. Out in real America where most Americans - liberal and conservative - don't focus on politics every day, Bush is still doing very well. And, even among conservatives, Bush has considerable political support. But among ideological and intellectual conservatives, emotional support for Bush is starting to ebb.
I can't point to anything scientific. But if you pay attention to what conservatives are saying at meetings and in magazines, on the Web and at the think tanks, as well as what readers, friends, colleagues and sources say, there's a definite undercurrent of discontent with the president.
For some it started with his plan to offer amnesty-lite to illegal immigrants. For others, it's his fence-sitting on gay marriage. For others, like me, it was his signing of the campaign finance reform bill even though he thought it was unconstitutional. Or maybe it was his support for steel tariffs. Or the farm bill. I forget.
Anyway that doesn't matter. What unites pretty much all of these grumblers is a deep sense of, well, disgust with how much this administration is spending.
When it comes to taxpayer dollars, this is the second most "generous" administration in American history, second only to that of another Texan, Lyndon Johnson. There may be good aspects to George Bush's "compassionate conservatism," though on the whole I never liked it, but it's clear that compassion doesn't come cheap at the Bush White House, on whose watch overall spending from 2001 to 2003 grew at 16 percent and discretionary spending went up 27 percent. That's double Bill Clinton's rate.
Bush's defenders are eager to point to the war on terrorism as an excuse for increased spending. Fine. But that's only a small part of the story.
Under Bush, spending on education has gone up 60.8 percent, on labor 56 percent and on the Department of the Interior by 23.4 percent . The price tag for the president's Medicare plan alone starts, but won't end, at $400 billion. The farm bill was a pork horror show, pure and simple. More people work for the federal government now than at any time since the end of the Cold War.
Brian Riedl of the Heritage Foundation sums it up this way: "Overall for 2003, the federal government spent $20,300 per household, taxed $16,780 per household, and ran a budget deficit of $3,520 per household."
The reason most Americans haven't heard a lot about all this is twofold. Conservatives have stayed relatively quiet and liberals have controlled the anti-Bush microphone.
Democratic presidential candidates and interest groups have been screeching that the president is gutting education and abandoning the elderly. Obviously this is nonsense on tall stilts, since Bush is spending a lot more on both than Bill Clinton ever did.
In fact, on Medicare and education, for example, the Dems think Bush is being stingy. And a study by the National Taxpayers Union found that each and every one of the Democrats running for president have plans that would raise the deficit even more, from $169.6 billion under Joe Lieberman to - get this - $1.33 trillion under Al Sharpton.
Conservative opposition to such overspending is more complex than the media and the left think. Some just don't like red ink. Others think big government erodes freedom and traditional arrangements. Others believe it slowly inoculates the citizenry to greater levels of social engineering.
Whatever the reasons, conservatives - as opposed to partisan Republicans - have sincere misgivings about the kind of presidency Bush is conducting. A lot of compassionate conservatism is smart politics for the Republican Party, and some of it is even good policy. And, yes, conservatives understand that the GOP is practically the only place they have a real impact in electoral politics.
But I'm not sure George Bush understands how much he is asking from those who brought him to the dance.
I think his stand on gay marriage has been known for some time.
CT can "speak" for himself as well as anyone here, but I'll define "fruitcake" as someone who would risk having John Kerry, Howard Dean, Wesley Clark or John Edwards ... and THEIR Attorney Generals, Secretaries of Defense, State, Commerce, Energy, Interior, HUD, DHS and their commissioners of the EPA, IRS and EEOC empowered to rule our lives ... AGAIN .... in some petty campaign to send some puerile "statement" to George W. Bush and the GOP.
You folk aren't redeemable.
"DU Trolls"?? Really??
You are clueless. Totally.
And if you are so "bored," then why do you troll "these kind of threads"?
Do yourself a favor -- stay put at the FR Nuremburg Rally threads. There you can swing your pom-poms without the distraction of debating any issue whatsoever.
Spoken like a weasel who can't come up with the Bush quote he promised.
FYI - George W. Bush is not Ari Fleischer, and Ari Fleischer is not George W. Bush.
I was frankly astounded when I realized the same thing. I have spent the last 1/2 an hour researching both sides of the issue and there is a grandfather clause for weapons purchased prior to 1994. I cannot believe that they demand the right to own assault weapons as part of the 2nd amendment and then I find out that gun manufacturers have been making guns to get around the ban.
Thanks to the people on this thread, I stand firmly with President Bush, President Reagan, President Bush 41 and their distaste for semi-automatic assault weapons. I have gotten a real education here this afternoon because I thought we were talking fully automatic as assault weapons. Thanks to Mr. Mojo I found out that was not the case. We are talking about semi-automatic weapons with more than a 10 clip capability are banned. Who needs more than 10 bullets to go off one after the other?
Thanks to Freepers who told me about the 1934 ban on fully automatic weapons as well and pointed out where I was wrong which caused me to do the research.
That said, I now support President Bush and the members of Congress in renewing the Assault Weapons Ban after what I have seen posted on this thread. Before this thread I thought it should expire in September -- no longer. When Freepers object to a criminal background check for weapons and the right to buy whatever kind of weapon they want, they lost me completely. I do support the 2nd amendment for rifles, shotguns, and handguns -- there is absolutely zero need for any other weapons in the hands of civilians and I don't care if someone is an expert marksman in the military. We do not live in a dictatorship no matter how much you all whine your rights have been taken away -- they haven't.
This is not 1776 and we are not fighting the British -- times were a lot different back then and if someone wants to take the Constitution literally then they shouldn't have any guns but the type of guns that were around when the Bill of Rights were written. Doesn't that sound ludicrous? Well no background checks and allowing criminals to go in a purchase any gun they want is just as ludicrous IMHO.
This is my last statement on this thread.
Arab terrorists? Urban gang members?
So in short, expect the rest of us to support your "bend over and shut up" position because...because...Why's that again??
Sorry -- some of us aren't quite so easily led to the lap-dance party.
The Reagan mystique is as much a testament to our own life wonderment and expectations as people - 20 years younger than now - as it is accurate historical context. He's the last Republican many of our "True Conservatives" ever voted for. And the GOP abandoned ... them???
Reagan beat the Russkies. He caved to O'Neal and the Dems to do it. We didn't have cable TV and the internet back then, or FR would be a "House Afire" of Conservative anti-Ronnie angst in 1984 as it is at times a home of anti-Bush angst in 2004. It's called governing in a 50-50 Republic, where the true believers, left and right, will never get their way in one fell swoop.
God bless those dandy elitist wigged lawyers who hated each other, and could care less about the peon citizenry, in 1787. Our pendulum NEVER swings too far left, or right. Bush is swinging right wit' a purpose. He's not particularly loved by the lefties, I have observed. If the righties hate him too, well, they can go to the crying room with the skinny socialists.
D@mn right -- Especially when it comes to Abortion, Guns, and American Sovereignty. In this case #3 is being seriously trifled with.
Now go back to performing your Administration lap-dog duties. FETCH!
Then vote against Bush, and shut the hell up.
Your disparaging remarks are getting old.
You couldn't get a lap dance if you paid for it.
But, anyone who looks at a Bush/GOP vs. Kerry/DEM choice and chooses neither has rendered themselves irrelevant in the political process. Why would Bush, or the GOP, care one way or another which way you'd vote when you cannot make the most elemental of ideological discernment between John Kerry (Howard Dean, Wes Clark) and President Bush.
Y'all become invisible to the real deal politicos who make policy and impact our lives ... good or bad.
Threatening to withdraw your support from a team (i.e. Party) in a gambit to injure the team is far less effective than offering to contribute your support, with an alternative approach, to that same team in the effort to better ensure their success.
The former gets you kicked to the curb. The latter makes you a player.
Yep. The mentality of "fall in line or else you too are the enemy," is the modus operandi of hard-core Democrats, and now the hard-core GOP. Any valid dissent is met with the same attitude as the Jews received at the Nuremberg Rally.
" Tell you the truth, this makes a damn good case for a third party. One that will put our people, and our country first, all the time, *everytime*."
Hear ya, bro.
I do support the 2nd amendment for rifles, shotguns, and handguns -- there is absolutely zero need for any other weapons in the hands of civilians and I don't care if someone is an expert marksman in the military. We do not live in a dictatorship no matter how much you all whine your rights have been taken away -- they haven't.
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Excellent analysis. You've just about convinced me. Heretofore, I have been totally against background checks because I believe the 2nd Ammendment affords us the right to keep and bear arms anonymously --- without the government knowing who bears 'em and who does not. Am I wrong?