The political killing season gets earlier and earlier, it seems.
So does finding ways to make voters stay home…and I’m not speaking of Democrats here.
In full disclosure, I’m one week older than Herman Cain. So, I’m old by some accounts. In fact, all the people closely associated with us here at UP share having been around the track a few times. Maturity and experience. It once was considered a valuable thing.
And as that NCAA sports commercial goes, we all turned pro at something other than politics. Several professions are represented here; law, corporate business, private business, science, medicine, military, yep, even West Point. Still, we have (in my view) as good a team of political analysts and handicappers as can be found on any paid consultancy. Only none of us are on anyone’s payroll. We are all political mendicants. But neither do we have any outstanding debts.
Some of us are also involved in real politics at the grassroots precinct and state level where they do all the dull and boring stuff which the oh-so-smart and oh-so-hip think is too pedestrian for their nimble minds.
We even have have a couple of skill sets we can’t speak about out loud.
There isn’t a real world environment, from farmstead to fisher’s cot, from corner corporate office to a cubicle, we can’t speak about without many years of familiarity.
Finally, politics is not our first language. This also we consider an asset, since true conservative politics is about life and liberty, and not the other way around.
In fact, knowing this simple distinction, what really comes first, you can understand the gap that seems to have crept between the political pundit class and the tea party class, who, if my math is correct, are the only ones who can save America from this dreadful thing called Obama and the socialism he and his party represent.
So, for this day only, I want to wax poetic about experience, wisdom, and adultery (Radar O’Reilly) which 80%, perhaps even more, of the political blogs on the internet, simply don’t have, and maybe causing great harm because of it.
Consider: In the 2006 midterms, when conservatives handed Congress back to the Socialists-with-Mean-Look-in-Eyes (That’s Algonquin for “Democrats”), over 2 million GOP voters stayed home. The national debt as a per cent of GDP began a steep climb rise then, and not two years later. Thanks, guys.
Not to be outdone, and to put an exclamation mark to this tantrum, the nomination of John McCain in 2008 caused the number of stay-at-homes to rise to as many as 5-6 million.
Those millions who stayed home were largely conservatives with a chip on their shoulder, proving what we old timers have always suspected; that the Left does not have the market cornered on teat-fittery.
Full Discovery II: Since fit-throwing as a generational condition is part of this discussion, I have to note that my generation was the first to employ it on a grand scale. You can find it almost anywhere these days. It’s both cultural and generational. While I know 25-year old Marine sergeants that are more mature and adult than most 50 year olds, Hillary Clinton, at 63, can still pitch a fit that would do Wanda Wilson’s daughter, Lucinda, in the Walmart toy department, proud.
And Hillary also reminds us that, even as Secretary of State, it’s a reputation hard to outrun. Like Naomi Campbell, she’s a lamp-throwing expletive-tosser for life. There’s a lesson here for you kneepants who may tune in.
The Ship of Fools
Did I mention that internet political blogging first began to hit national prominence in 2006? Coincidence? Or that even today, after five years of national prominence, most of it’s key members are still under 40? Or that many of those pundits have a real world resume almost as thin as Barack Obama?
That’s right, all they know is politics or some subset, like law.
The Ship of Fools is a 15th Century allegory that has continuing relevance in our modern world, for that seems to be where the disgruntled seem to take their ball and glove and go when they don’t get their way, turning over the battlefield to their enemies. It also seems to be the home of the snide, the condescending and the mocking.
Sadly, many don’t go out to this ship on their own. Many are led, and these we have to try to rescue.
Only this week, in a private email by a somewhat known internet blogger, “If Romney gets the nomination, I’m outta here. ” Holding himself out to be a leader of sorts, he seemed to be asking others to hop into his rowboat oaring out to the Ship of Fools as well.
Considering the danger an Obama second term poses, our response here at UP would be, “Where you ‘outta here’ to?…er, kid.” (Yeah, he’s about 34.)
Fact: Two million teat-fit throwing “purists” handed the Congress to the Democrats in 2006, then doubled-down in 2008. I doubt we could have won the White House anyway, it was too historic a moment, but the rest of Congress? They abdicated all, only, not over honor, but rather, a snit.
Now, it’s true, just in the nick of time in 2010 the Ship of Fools emptied out and most came ashore with a roar.
More important than the reemergence of the thumb-sucking wing of conservatism, however, is that they were accompanied by millions more new voters, citizens who had never involved themselves with politics before.
Collectively these new voters have been called “tea parties,” and collectively they also brought onto the political scene a new demographic that did not exist in 2006 0r 2008; that of people of experience and common sense, people who have been around the track…yet lacking in what most would conclude is conventional political savvy by inside-the-beltway standards.
Objects to be shaped, many saw them. For over two years now political professionals have attempted to get their arms around this bunch; some to mold them into a unified army, others to turn them into a vehicle for their own ambitions. Both natural impulses.
But a lot simply didn’t want to be upstaged by a bunch of mom and pop storekeeps, and saw them as a threat.
No matter, they turned the political world on its head, for instead of being the object of political movers and shakers, they became the shakers themselves.
Law: Conservatism can be played at several levels but war, only one. These people came to fight and win a battle. Nothing more, nothing less. They did not come to joust. They did no come to jockey for a better position on the next go-round.
The conservative political pundit class has been befuddled as to how to herd these cats, or manage them. Or even predict them. There are no statistics, no analytics, so Karl Rove can’t help. There are no templates to pour over, so RedState, Hot Air and Town Hall also are grasping for new clues. What to do? What to do?
Here at Unified Patriots, we only have one rule here, “Don’t run them off.”
The Ship of Fools, Redux
As I said, the hateful season is starting early, and it does seem the rowboats are beginning to fill up again, headed back out to the Ship. In the name of “vetting” already we are seeing candidates being bashed in a scornful way, as a way to subtly and not so subtly guide people to another candidate, never stopping to consider, that for many or most of these people watching and listening, this is their first trip into the political arena.
Cain, Santorum, Bachmann, Perry, Palin (not in), Christie (not in) collectively have millions of followers who had never “liked” any candidate this far out in front of an election before. And the reason they feel this way is because of one man, Obama, and the sheer sense of doom they know will befall us if that man is given another four years.
Sadly, many of these are looking for a rowboat and oars as we speak, driven in part because of the way their candidate has being (mis)treated, and in part out of disillusionment with some prominent conservatives bloggers and pundits. “I thought we were all in this together?”
Few of us here at UnifiedPatriots share a “favorite” candidate, but we all share a Top 4 or Top 5, Romney included (I think.). None of us can find any profit to this wahr by ushering any voter, by word or deed, back into that rowboat out to the Ship.
To us this is a Cardinal Sin, for we all agree we are in a war for the life of our country, and not just a political tournament where everyone jockeys for a seat closer to the head of the table for the next serving.
Unified Patriot’s site logo says we are about “electing constitutional conservatives.” The purer the better. But we abide by a simple Law, Beasley’s Law,” that:
There are no pure voters,
So, We don’t run off any of them.
Thou shalt not encourage anyone into a rowboat headed back to the Ship of Fools.
But as it’s shaping up, our simple rules do not seem to be in the playbook of several well-known political blogs, who, for whatever reasons, have decided to try slash and burn politics for their chosen candidates.
Pride Goes Before the Fall
It would be foolish for me to make an appeal to the political blogosphere. After all, they’re mostly kids. But I can suggest how you, an experienced adult, might wade through what they have to say. Rather than too harshly vetting the candidates, we need to start vetting the scab pickers who seem to own the row boat concession out to the Ship of Fools.
Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. (Prov 16:18)
Cases in point: Michelle Malkin and Erick Erickson of RedState.
Michellle Malkin is two weeks younger than my oldest son, while Erick is just a little older than my youngest son. Malkin and my son graduated from college the same year, during Clinton’s first run in ’92, while Erick and my youngest were probably just graduating from high school. And I was just home from the former USSR where I worked with people on “how to trick the government.”
Malkin was already an established syndicated writer and television personality before she burst onto the blogging scene in 2007. Erickson emerged in 2006 when he molded RedState into a nationally recognized conservative blog site. Both have solid credentials as conservatives.
I’m neither a fan nor antagonist of Ms Malkin. She has a large following and speaks loudly the conservative mantra. But on 16 August she penned a hit piece of sorts on Rick Perry about a 2007 executive order ordering Gardasil into Texas classrooms. In hindsight, it was not Perry’s brightest moment, but as already stated, most of these candidates have closets full of issues they’d like to undo.
But Malkin’s language and tone clearly was not to edify, but rather to scold and shame voter’s away from Perry. Intentional or unintentional doesn’t matter. Under no circumstances should anyone vote for this creep, she seemed to be saying. She has unwisely painted herself, if Perry were to be the nominee, right into that rowboat headed right back out to the Ship. Pride has cancelled out her vote, which is little consequence to me. It’s her tag-alongs I fret over.
Many of you may come away with the notion that Michelle is in the hire for someone else. Who? Romney? The Bush clan? Who knows? Michelle Malkin is not running candidates into the arms of another candidate, but into that rowboat. And she doesn’t even know this. Pride goeth…
On the other hand, Erick Erickson and RedState seem to have gone all-in for Rick Perry, and therefore fired back at Malkin. (Then all their pals chose up sides.)
I tend to side with RedState on this issue, but only to a point, for it seems RS has abandoned its “let the people decide” position (a very conservative position) of 2010, having already claimed Rick Perry as their champion, and embarked on a subtle (and not too subtle) attack on the other conservative candidates, including Palin, even though she isn’t running, which stirred Mark Levin’s ire. RS has already suggested that all the conservatives should drop out now, before a single vote has been cast, and throw in behind Perry. This could benefit Perry, sure, Erickson maybe, but RedState not one bit, especially should Perry falter.
Full Disclosure III: I do have a history with RedState as some of you may already know. For a little over a year I wrote there. But only as a diarist. Then suddenly one Sunday in February, affectionately referred to here as the Kracken, myself and three others, awoke to find we couldn’t log into RS anymore. Two of them, the famous Beasley (who penned the “Rule” above), were far more senior than I in time-in-service at RedState.
So, you may think, “Well that was awfully ill-mannered.” And it was. There was no pink slip, no courtesy note saying we were no longer welcome at RS. Not even a “Go to hell.” So you’d be right, it was bad manners, one of those events that goes more to the character of the firer than the firee, especially since, as you all know, I’m a man of impeccable character.
After a couple of days, and being old, and having been around the track a few times, I thought, “Hell, they’re just kids. That’s how kids do things.” And I let it pass. No biggie…
…in part because RS has some very fine adult writers who are in fact professional in things other than blogging. Or mocking strangers. I continue to respect many of them. But behind the curtain is a coterie of kids who apparently were bullied on playground, or had to take piano, so who find in this particular medium a way to get even with all sorts of real and imaginary demons. I’ve called some “back alley bushwhackers” for their penchant for swooping down and attacking some innocent new reader who just dropped in for a cup of coffee; mocking, chiding and generally bullying that person until he/she never came back again. In this they reminded me mostly of Democrats, since, while conservatives like you stand while speaking to you, Dems insist that you kneel.
About Erickson personally, his inability or unwillingness to control his minions in this practice is a thing I also ascribed to youth. My own 40 year old is much more able in this department. Still, I gave him the benefit of the doubt.
But I gave that notion up four days ago, when Erick penned this about Herman Cain:
Herman Cain is done.
In all honesty, I think if I did not like Herman as much as I do and did not feel some measure of gratitude for him allowing me to take his radio show, I would have objectively cut him off this list before now.
This was Erickson’s kiss-off to the man who had taken him under his wing, and actually set up his current gig as a talk-show host. EE wrote this in such a way as to suggest a superior-subordinate relationship that in truth is reversed, just as politics and the real world are reversed in Erickson’s mind as well, I think. Student-mentor might have been more apropos.
Erick Erickson will have to go at least another 20 years just to learn what Herman Cain has already forgotten…about life, the real world, people, and wisdom…a thing he doesn’t seem yet old enough to seek. He seems to have subordinated conservatism to the sound of his own voice, a common ailment among that age-group.
EE’s comments about Mr Cain were insulting to me (I can’t speak for Herman) for I have to stop and think what sort of knot I’d jerk in my own 38 year old’s ass if he ever spoke how “…were it not for being my father, I’d have quit indulging Dad long ago…”
How condescending and insulting, indeed.
Our bottom line at Unified Patriots
The bottom line is that while espousing conservative issues, both Malkin and RedState, and their several allies, seem to be sending ordinary citizens out of the voting arena to the Ship of Fools at an alarming rate.
I wish I could appeal to those folks, but I can’t.
The mom and pop tea party types represent the salvation of this country but not just because of numbers, but because of a sagacity and a common sense that scares the bejezzus out of the conservative chattering class as much as it does the Left.
You can go to RedState, HotAir/Allahpundit, Malkin, a dozen others, and find all sorts of relevant superior conservative commentary. But just look for the adults. They are not that hard to distinguish. One makes fun of the Left, while the other makes fun of any available target, including you. It’s not hard to know when you are reading a kid in kneepants who is merely trying to write like an adult. They usually give themselves away, often trying to act as if they are stroking their beard when it’s only peachfuzz, as we often think of Captain Kneepants (at RedState), who once wrote a masterful paean to General Electric on the occasion of Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday, then screeched and threatened people who complained about GE’s current relationship with Obama, or that GE had fired Reagan as its chief spokesman, at the behest of the Kennedys, for being “conservative,” a fact he’d neglected to find out.
We’re for grown ups here at Unified Patriots, but this is not a commercial for our site.
For the sake of God and Country, avoid children acting childishly. Loose Lips Launches Ships…of Fools.
As an illiterate genius named Hodge once told me… about me, “They don’t know nothing” and they wear that nothingness on the tips of their tongue.