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Old 11-09-2008, 06:29 PM   #1
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Squandered Conservative Opportunities

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We Blew It
A look back in remorse on the conservative opportunity that was squandered.
by P.J. O'Rourke

Let us bend over and kiss our ass goodbye. Our 28-year conservative opportunity to fix the moral and practical boundaries of government is gone--gone with the bear market and the Bear Stearns and the bear that's headed off to do you-know-what in the woods on our philosophy.

An entire generation has been born, grown up, and had families of its own since Ronald Reagan was elected. And where is the world we promised these children of the Conservative Age? Where is this land of freedom and responsibility, knowledge, opportunity, accomplishment, honor, truth, trust, and one boring hour each week spent in itchy clothes at church, synagogue, or mosque? It lies in ruins at our feet, as well it might, since we ourselves kicked the shining city upon a hill into dust and rubble. The progeny of the Reagan Revolution will live instead in the universe that revolves around Hyde Park.

Mind you, they won't live in Hyde Park. Those leafy precincts will be reserved for the micromanagers and macro-apparatchiks of liberalism--for Secretary of the Department of Peace Bill Ayers and Secretary of the Department of Fairness Bernardine Dohrn. The formerly independent citizens of our previously self-governed nation will live, as I said, around Hyde Park. They will make what homes they can in the physical, ethical, and intellectual slums of the South Side of Chicago.

The South Side of Chicago is what everyplace in America will be once the Democratic administration and filibuster-resistant Democratic Congress have tackled global warming, sustainability, green alternatives to coaland oil, subprime mortgage foreclosures, consumer protection, business oversight, financial regulation, health care reform, taxes on the "rich," and urban sprawl. The Democrats will have plenty of time to do all this because conservatism, if it is ever reborn, will not come again in the lifetime of anyone old enough to be rounded up by ACORN and shipped to the polling booths.
None of this is the fault of the left. After the events of the 20th century--national socialism, international socialism, inter-species socialism from Earth First--anyone who is still on the left is obviously insane and not responsible for his or her actions. No, we on the right did it. The financial crisis that is hoisting us on our own petard is only the latest (if the last) of the petard hoistings that have issued from the hindquarters of our movement. We've had nearly three decades to educate the electorate about freedom, responsibility, and the evils of collectivism, and we responded by creating a big-city-public-school-system of a learning environment.

Liberalism had been running wild in the nation since the Great Depression. At the end of the Carter administration we had it cornered in one of its dreadful low-income housing projects or smelly public parks or some such place, and we held the Taser gun in our hand, pointed it at the beast's swollen gut, and didn't pull the trigger. Liberalism wasn't zapped and rolled away on a gurney and confined somewhere until it expired from natural causes such as natural law or natural rights.
We Blew It

The plus side of an Obama presidency is that the right can relax without the responsibility to govern and gets to bitch and snipe for years on end.
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:36 PM   #2
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Holy God PJ O'Rourke is a moron.

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People are even more conservative if they have children. Nobody with kids is a liberal, except maybe one pothead in Marin County. Everybody wants his or her children to respect freedom, exercise responsibility, be honest, get educated, have opportunities, and own a bunch of guns.
Keep believing that if you want to be in a permanent minority.
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:39 PM   #3
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PJ O'Rourke stopped being relevant back when....actually ......i can't remember him ever being relevant.
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:42 PM   #4
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I usually read him as ironic
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Where was the meum and the tuum in our shakedown of Washington lobbyists? It took a Democratic majority in the House of Representatives 40 years--from 1954 to 1994--to get that corrupt and arrogant. And we managed it in just 12. (Who says Republicans don't have much on the ball?)

Our attitude toward immigration has been repulsive. Are we not pro-life? Are not immigrants alive? Unfortunately, no, a lot of them aren't after attempting to cross our borders. Conservative immigration policies are as stupid as conservative attitudes are gross. Fence the border and give a huge boost to the Mexican ladder industry. Put the National Guard on the Rio Grande and know that U.S. troops are standing between you and yard care. George W. Bush, at his most beneficent, said if illegal immigrants wanted citizenship they would have to do three things: Pay taxes, learn English, and work in a meaningful job. Bush doesn't meet two out of three of those qualifications. And where would you rather eat? At a Vietnamese restaurant? Or in the Ayn Rand Café? Hey, waiter, are the burgers any good? Atlas shrugged. (We would, however, be able to have a smoke at the latter establishment.)

To go from slime to the sublime, there are the lofty issues about which we never bothered to form enough principles to go out and break them.
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:51 PM   #5
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I thought he used to be funny.

This fool gave up any right to be called a decent conservative when he threw his lot in with Buschco. He lost the plot a long time ago.
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:53 PM   #6
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Liberalism had been running wild in the nation since the Great Depression. At the end of the Carter administration we had it cornered in one of its dreadful low-income housing projects or smelly public parks or some such place, and we held the Taser gun in our hand, pointed it at the beast's swollen gut, and didn't pull the trigger. Liberalism wasn't zapped and rolled away on a gurney and confined somewhere until it expired from natural causes such as natural law or natural rights.
I hope I am correct in reading this passage as a satire on liberal perceptions of the conservative outlook.

Overall, I would tend to view O'Rourke as a particular kind of Irish-American - the Reaganite , traditional conservative, anti-big government type.

However, I would give him one thing, his articles are a worthwhile counterpoint to left-wing Sinn Fein supporting Irish-Americans, who think that if you don't support Sinn Fein's analysis, you're not a real Irish-American.

Edit: Having read the article, I think it's a pretty good article. Worth reading. My problem is, when, I see someone like PJ's name at the head of an article - or to name another prominent conservative from the literary world, Tom Wolfe - I am straight away on my guard because these guys never came out and condemned the pro-torture policy of the Bush administration, and that, to me, puts them straightaway in the camp of 'bad conservative'. I do keep notes on this kind of stuff! At least McCain always did the right thing with regard to condemning torture.
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:23 AM   #7
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Restoring Reaganism by Deroy Murdock on National Review Online

I think this sums it up.
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:52 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by purpleoscar View Post
That article pretty much says what some of us have been saying for a long time, and it's what everyone is saying now, but the problem is article after article commentary commentary keep saying WHAT they need to do, but they never offer any real HOW...

And honestly I'm fine with that...
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