Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Caucus Suckers and Chrysler

I spent last night at the Republican Caucus in Colorado where my attempt to nominate Pancho Villa fell a few votes short of success. I thought I’d share a couple observations with you. Afterwards, let’s talk about this Chrysler advert everyone seems to be talking about. . . endlessly.

Caucusing: Procedures. The caucus process is an awful process and needs to be replaced. The process goes like this. First, you had to register in advance. Several people were turned away for not being registered. The 36 who remained crammed into a room. The floor was thrown open for speeches and five people demonstrated their ignorance. A vote was held, confirming their ignorance. Then delegates were elected. Those delegates will now go to a county convention, where they hope to be elected to go the state convention. Seriously. Could you design a less efficient and representative system? Sure, by adding a meaningless primary, which Colorado will also have for no reason whatsoever.

Caucus: Voters. If you ever want to lose your faith in democracy, go to one of these shindigs. The level of idiocy was intense. Five people spoke, all for Santorum. The first woman said, “I’ve never been to a caucus before and I don’t know much about the candidates, but Mr. Santorum seems very moral to me.” The next idiot said, “we tried voting for economics in the past and look where that go us. It’s time we voted for a guy who’s moral and Mr. Santorum, he’s moral. And he’s an economic conservative. He’s got a history of being the only economic conservative.” Idiot number three said, “I just wanted to say a word about Mr. Santorum. He’s pro-life. He opposed partial birth abortion when nobody else would. We need to stop abortion in America and Mr. Santorum is the only one who will do that.” Idiot number four said, “Obama is the most immoral leader we ever had. We need a man who is moral and that’s Mr. Santorum.” Finally, idiot number five said, “Abortion is the biggest issue this country faces and Mr. Santorum is the only one who will stop abortion.”

Then a vote was held: Pastor Rick 25, Romney 10, Paul 1, Newt 0.

Caucusing: Results. This is the part where you think I’m going to lose my mind. I’ll bet you expect me to rail against the idiots who don’t realize (or care) that Santorum is a socialist, who think tilting at the abortion windmill is more important than political freedom and jobs in this country, who don’t get that Rick can’t be elected because he’s toxic, and who don’t realize that he will never deliver a ban on abortion even if he gets elected. Well, forget about it. I’m over it. All I’ll say is congratulations President Obama on your re-election. You have chosen your opponents wisely.

The Chrysler Ad: Until yesterday, I saw no reason to comment on the Clint Eastwood Super Bowl ad. There are already 5.2 million screeds written about it and I saw no reason to add another. But as the number of articles just keep piling up, I realized there is something worth saying: Stop!

For those who don’t know, this ad showed Clint Eastwood pimping the turnaround of Chrysler and Detroit. The ad isn’t overtly political, but it sure feels that way and it was enough to get conservative spidey-senses tingling. Indeed, the ad seems to imply that the auto bailout, something Obama considers his number one selling point, has saved Detroit, Chrysler and America, and now everything is great again. In many ways, this felt like the first Obama re-election commercial. Obama even added to this sense by praising the ad and basically thanking Chrysler for the plug.

But then things went wrong. Conservatives screamed foul. This immediately brought out Clint Eastwood to make sure that people knew he was not associated with Obama nor was he endorsing Obama. Then people started mentioning: (1) how the taxpayers lost almost three billion dollars in the Chrysler part of the bailout, (2) how Chrysler is owned by Fiat, an Italian company and not Americans, and makes their cars in Canada and Mexico, not Detroit, and (3) how Detroit is a hopeless basketcase akin to what is shown in Robocop. Suddenly, the whole “Obama is great” gloss began to look like a bitter joke.

Now there’s word that this pro-Detroit ad was actually filmed in New Orleans! How ridiculous is that? Not only did they need to pick another city to highlight Detroit, but this is the second time Fiat has made this mistake in the past few months (Fiat = Chrysler). Indeed, you may recall Fiat being embarrassed when it was revealed that their Jennifer Lopez ads where Lopez talks about New York being her home while seeming to drive through New York were actually shot in L.A. How in the world could the same company make this same huge mistake twice? Does that make you trust their cars?

In the end, this became an incredible embarrassment for Fiat/Chrysler, Detroit and Obama.

BUT conservatives won’t stop whining about it. Indeed, as article after article continues to be written about this, often wrongly accusing Clint Eastwood of selling out, conservatives are coming across like petty, obsessed children.... little Santorums. When you pile on, there comes a point where people feel the attacks have become ridiculous and the sympathies shift. We have reached that point. Take your victory and move on before you snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.... like always.

85 comments:

Tennessee Jed said...

thanks for wxplaining the caucus system. WTF. We need to get to a closed primary system with only 4 dates in play. I like your system of rotating. The groupings should be mixed by size and geography. There will be 2 debates and two sessions where candidates get to discuss (with notes) their specific policies on a range of issues.

I like the Limbaugh parody on the Chrysler ad, now moveon.org

I think you should pay taxes and have to pass a civics exam to be ligible to vote!

T-Rav said...

Andrew, a couple observations.

1) Taking into account all Santorum's flaws--which, let's face it, are pretty bad--I think last night suggests that if he were to become the nominee, he could go the distance against Obama. The trifecta victory should not have happened, especially in Colorado. What lies behind it, I don't know; but he seems to be especially good at boots-on-the-ground campaigning. Moreover, I think in recent weeks he's become increasingly good at messaging, toning down the borderline-hysteria and trying to sound more appealing and statesmanlike. His solid performance in the last debate probably helped. If he can manage to get a steady stream of fundraising, he has the potential to take off.

2) Romney has no one to blame but himself for the loss. He has shown a continuing inability to win over the base, and the reaction to his verbal gaffes, which were taken badly out of context, have punctured his "electability" argument.

3) Newt needs to drop out. He wasn't on the ballot in Missouri, finished dead last in Minnesota, and barely beat out Paul for third in Colorado. Go home, dude.

4) The caucus system is stupid.

5) I never understood the flap over the Chrysler ad, but now that we've apparently managed to botch Obama's PR grab, we need to move on.

tryanmax said...

TJ, Andrew, what is this system of rotating? In any case, I've never had much faith in democracy over republicanism. The champions of the popular vote can never muster more defense than "It's the right thing to do."

"But what about all these problems it creates?" he asked, gesturing to several problems scattered about.

"Those? Those don't matter!" came the angry retort. "Everyone should have an equal voice, so just shut up!"

"But," he raised a finger, "you just said--"

"I said, 'Shut up!'"

<><><><><><>

Sorry, that just spilled out of me. In any case, the founders understood the dangers of democracy, which is why they tempered it within a republic. I'm with TJ that in order to vote, one should have some "skin in the game" to borrow a phrase. At the very least, I think the trade-off to gov't assistance should be loss of a vote. That might make a few people think long and hard before going on the dole.

tryanmax said...

Oh, and speaking of Fiat/Chrysler, I like THIS AD much better. Anyone speak Italian?

StanH said...

So, I take it you didn’t like the caucus process…ha. There are a lot of reasons this is a good thing, no matter what you or I think of Rick Santorum, this will pull Romney to the right. Though like you, I don’t believe Santorum to be a rock-ribbed conservative, by the same token, I don’t believe anybody left in the field can hoist that mantle (the only one was Herman and he was lynched). Sadly, our only choices left are government loving assholes, with their only differences being, by degree. Oh, I know being a proud member of the Tea Party is not a suicide pact, but this is an indicator of it’s power. I believe Barry’s toast, whomever our candidate is, and this bodes well in surrounding our poor choices with conservatives.

The Chrysler commercial was much ado about nothing. I didn’t see the commercial live, I was walking my dogs, I saw it the next day as the brouhaha was exploding. Once again, as Jed said, Rush handled it best with a parody, very funny, look it up.

We the people... said...

I put you in for an award: http://wethepeople09171787.blogspot.com/2012/02/apparently.html

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, This is a horribly stupid system. Not only the idea that you had to pre-register, but then the multiple steps where there are actually three separate meetings to decide who the nominee will be. It's like a system designed to maximize procedure. I have no idea why anyone thinks this is a good thing?

I really do like the idea of rotating regional "super primary" system. I think that solves all the problems we've run into in every election so far.

I hadn't heard the Limbaugh parody, and he actually wasn't the one that was bothering me. The bigger problem is the continuous "outrage" of every single conservative talkers/writer/troll. They just won't stop putting out articles. At some point, Eastwood will realize he would have been better off just telling conservatives to stick it.

Pancho Villa said...

Muchas gracias for all your support, Senor Price! Remember, Pancho Villa 2012!

Tennessee Jed said...

Andrew - Limbaugh figures Eastwood got scammed. His parody was the commercial he figured Eastwood would really make where he talks about screwing bond holders and talks about Americans coming together to kick Obama's scrawny ass back to Chicago

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, 1. No. Rick has a 0% chance. He is the only one on stage that I can guarantee you will lose. Even Paul has an outside chance.

But you know, the GOP is good at digging its own grave, so if that's what they want then so be it. The country can survive four more years of Obama. And maybe this will finally wipe out the GOP and we can start over with a less f--d up party?

How Rick won Colorado is simple. Beginning in the 1980s, the religious "right" moved into the state. They set to work at taking over the GOP and succeeded. That, not coincidentally, coincided with the end of the GOP's ability to win statewide races -- something which is now starting to drift even to the local conservative stronghold.

Last night was a classic example of why. Most of the Santorum supporters knew each other. Indeed, they all seemed to have come from the same church. And the only two issues they cared about were that Santorum was moral and that he opposed abortion (the quotes in the article are accurate and are nearly complete).

But the general election won't be held in a church, it will be held with the public. And as much as many people will hate to hear this, the public not only does not like the GOP's obsession with abortion and gays, it fears the GOP on those issues. Santorum will go down in flames with only the religious portion of the base behind him.

2. Actually, I don't think Romney is to blame. It's become clear that the base is throwing a tantrum and they've made him the symbol of that tantrum and they aren't listening to him. I've paid very close attention for some time now to the arguments against him and they are entirely hypocritical, ephemeral and circular. "Romney is a RINO which is why the establishment likes him, which proves he's a RINO and therefore we should not support him." To try to add some sense of justification to this, you also hear attacks on RomneyCare, except this was a policy which other base favorites were advocating at the national level at that time and yet those people aren't being called out. You also hear "he won't embrace us," except he's tried and everything he says gets ignored.

So the base has decided that it would rather go with a lunatic or a theocrat, both of whom are pushing socialism, all in the name of not going with the guy pushing conservatism because "he's not a conservative."

That is the classic example of a tantrum.

3. Newt won't drop out, there's too much ego at stake. Plus, he thinks he'll win the South.

4. I love how the ad blew up on Obama, but conservatives are (as usual) looking to blow it.

rlaWTX said...

such pessimism so early in the day!

I hadn't gotten to checking the results yet, but I knew Ricky-boy did well from the facebook comments' trend... I think he got his people to go to the meetings (plural of caucus???) and the faithful took the prize...

Tennessee Jed said...

The problem I have with Santorum is he is essentially a 1 issue guy. Abortion. Other than that, he is no more conservative than the last guy. He endorsed the ass Arlen Spectre (spelling on purpose :))
I'd like to know what his position was during the 90's fight against Hillarycare. Mandates was not only Newt's position, it was Heritage foundation's position. I think Obama wins vs. Santorum, but that is just an opinion. Maybe the analysis is "how does repeal of Roe vs. Wade play among swing voters in the battleground states" That's where the answer probably lies.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, The rotating system.... It struck me that the problem with our primary system is that it gives too much power to individual states. It lets the first 3-4 states weed out the candidates. That's why we keep ending up with the horrid candidates we do because only certain types of candidates play well in those oddball states.

A better idea would be to break the country into 4-5 regions and then handle the primaries one region at a time. The minimizes the importance of any one state, but simultaneously allows regional concerns to be addressed. And to stop any one region from being cheated, the order of voting would rotate. So whoever went first this time would go last next time and then number 2 would be number 1 and so on.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, Yeah, that was another Super Bowl ad. I honestly didn't think that one was all that great either.

rlaWTX said...

OK, the rotating idea is much better than my "all on one day" idea... But something needs to be done to fix this disaster!

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, Well said.

No, I did not like the process. What a ridiculous process. Forming committees to form committees to make decisions. This is an insane process.

I hope you're right that this will be about pushing Romney to the right rather than actually selecting Ricky.

the only one was Herman and he was lynched... isn't that the truth. That still makes me angry.

Rush usually handles these things well. The ones that bother me are the articles attacking Eastwood: "this destroys his maverick status" and "this shows he's a tool for Obama." I find that insane.

Also, frankly, when did it become a bad thing to give a pep talk to America? This whole episode made Obama look bad, but conservatives seem to be working hard to make themselves look worse.

AndrewPrice said...

We the people, thanks. :)

AndrewPrice said...

Anytime Pancho! You da man!

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, I'm sorry I missed it. Its sounds hilarious.

Interestingly, someone pointed out yesterday that Eastwood went on record to oppose the auto bailout at the time. So I think it's clear where his sympathies lie.

rlaWTX said...

[Pancho Villa, the Ghosts of Rhett & Scarlet, and the kittens could do better than this process]

tryanmax said...

Andrew, Everything you wrote in point #2 (Actually, I don't think Romney is to blame...) is a perfect bolster to the argument that conservatism is a centrist philosophy and not a right-wing one. At least, that's how I prefer to see it. We all know that "moderates" are just liberals too shy to commit.

If I'm understanding the talk-show punditry in response to last night's primaries, it seems that by virtue of not being Rick Santorum, Romney is now pro-abortion, pro-mandated-contraception, and pro-killing-fluffy-kittens. The fact that he is not Rick Santorum proves this. ;)

RE: Fiat ad, it certainly wasn't Super Bowl caliber, but it made me chuckle. Incidentally, Fiat probably assumes that New Orleans can stand in for Detroit because they put a Romanian woman in for an Italian and no one seemed to notice.

Individualist said...

OK

I will only say this. chrysler has already got two government bailouts. There are only two governemnt bailout cards available per game.

So no more Chrysler bailouts.

tryanmax said...

RE: when did it become a bad thing to give a pep talk to America?

Another fine example of turning the language over to the left. I was speaking to someone the other day who was criticizing Romney for saying "everyone should pay their fair share" because "Obama talks like that."

Sockpuppet Knitters United said...

Hey, rlaWTX, what about us?? What are we chopped yarn bits?

AndrewPrice said...

rlaWTX, The Colorado GOP has been all about the Religious Right for almost two decades now. So it's really not a surprise Ricky could pull this off. But the public at large is very, very different from the people. The public at large actually cares about issues other than abortion.

It will be interesting to see how our fake primary turns out by comparison. Maybe this will snap the GOP out of it's bubble, but I doubt it. They seem to have signed the suicide pact and have been riding that wave of defeat after defeat for 15-20 years now. Which is rather ironic, because those defeats are bring about the exact things they are trying to stop. Without those defeats, they wouldn't be happening.

CrispyRice said...

I'm feeling like a broken record, but I'll just add....


Blah. I don't wanna vote for any of 'em.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, I honestly believe Santorum is toxic outside the religious wing of the Republican party. He is the caricature of conservatives that Hollywood has used all these years.

And if his history is any indication, then he was firmly for mandates as well, though I've found nothing about him taking a stance. But it is a fairly likely assumption as he was for every other big government program he could find, including the Bush expansion of Medicare.

His economics are Obama's economics. His foreign policy is Bush's. And his social politics are far outside the mainstream. From Obama's perspective, he's the ideal candidate to face.

BevfromNYC said...

I hope you a least got to smoke cigars, drink lots of whiskey, and wear a funny hat at the Caucus. But seriously, at least you participated. If the system is bad then it needs to change, but we can't change the system unless we are IN the system.

So the only other thing I will add to the Chrysler ad issue is that the guys who thought it up, donated their expertise to Obama's 2008 campaign. Oh, and, I wish Clint Eastwood were running for President. That would make my day [oh like you weren't thinkin' it!].

Oh did you hear the one about David Axelrod suggesting that Obama may back off the birth control mandate? He thinks that there can be a compromise. I thought Axelrod was no longer a member of the President's WH staff. Didn't he resign to run Obama's re-election campaign? Why would he be speaking for the WH? so does this mean that the decision would be purely a political one?

AndrewPrice said...

rlaWTX, Agreed. Even all on one day would be better than the current system. But I like the rotating regional one because it allows a chance for voters to adjust after each region so they finally decide on one guy rather than spread their votes.

But the key thing is that it stops the state by state pandering and it stops a couple small states from weeding out anyone except the most bizarre candidates.

T-Rav said...

Andrew, I don't think that's entirely fair. However we may feel about the candidates, the base simply does not trust Romney to be the conservative President America needs. Maybe he would be good enough, but they evidently don't think so, and I'm not sure that feeling can be simply written off as a temper tantrum. After all, it's not like this is a new development; the entire race has been defined by the months-long search for a Not-Romney.

I also can't entirely agree that Romney has striven to endear himself to the base. Take the mandates. Yes, many others were supporting them back in the '90s (including Santorum); however, he, Newt, and practically everyone else flirting with the idea has since repudiated it. Romney declined to do so. In fact, he defended the mandate as "fundamentally conservative." He's also waffled in the past on abortion, AGW, etc.

I'm not trying to re-open this can of worms, because in spite of all that, there is certainly a case to be made that Romney is still the most electable conservative candidate (though not as strong, I think, as is often claimed). My point is, these are genuine grounds for concern and skepticism among the base.

In any event, this is just further proof of why our entire field sucks.

T-Rav said...

As for the primaries, I would rather do the rotating regional thing, if for no other reason than it makes no sense that Iowa/New Hampshire/South Carolina/Florida should always be setting the field for us. Give some other states a crack at it. But given the fit those states will throw if anyone tries it, I don't see it as likely.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax,

If I'm understanding the talk-show punditry in response to last night's primaries, it seems that by virtue of not being Rick Santorum, Romney is now pro-abortion, pro-mandated-contraception, and pro-killing-fluffy-kittens. The fact that he is not Rick Santorum proves this.

What you point out is the kind of stupid circularity I'm hearing from conservatives throughout this race. Person X claims to be more conservative than Person Y, even though their views and stated positions are 100% identical. Thus, they must be polar opposites because Person X seems very passionate about that issue and Person Y doesn't.

The only area where this "logic" hasn't been applied has been in illegal immigration where Santorum and Newt are far to the left of Obama and want to make themselves sound to the right of Romney.

The lack of clarity on these issues and self-delusion by base voters is astounding. That's why this is obviously a tantrum.

AndrewPrice said...

Indi, If only that were true. But the reason Big Business loves Big Government is the unlimited supply of bailout cards. Chrysler will need more soon because Fiat is not doing very well breaking into the market.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, No, this is conservatives this time. They didn't like the fact that Clint said we should all pull together and make America work again. They took that as a pro-Obama statement when it really isn't. It is, in fact, the same sort of thing Reagan used to say and lots of famous people... people who wanted America to succeed no matter who was in charge.

How times have changed.

AndrewPrice said...

rlaWTX and the kittens, I am truly stunned at how silly our process is. Caucuses are unrepresentative. Open primaries are unrepresentative. Allowing 2-3 small states pick the candidates is even dumber. The system is a disaster.

AndrewPrice said...

Crispy, I know the feeling. It truly pisses me off that in the best election in my lifetime to get a genuine conservative elected, we have a choice between the bland and the stupid. Conservatism as a political force is proving to be a failure... because it's stupid.

ScottDS said...

Kang: "Abortions for some, miniature American flags for others."
Springfield citizens: "Yay!" :-)

Re: Clint Eastwood, is this the first time you used a font color other than black?

Part of me wonders if certain conservative websites have jumped the proverbial shark over this. If someone like Clint Eastwood isn't immune from this sort of sensationalist "Eastwoodgate" bullshit, then you know what? No one is!!

It's like, why should anyone want to be in the public eye or do anything creative when idiot pundits will only question your intentions, your associations, etc.? And Eastwood has earned our goodwill - he's earned it for 40 years and people are still wondering about him? Isn't there a statute of limitations or something?

This is why I remain an Independent and if I make a movie or write a book one day, I know there's gonna be some website out there who accuses me of being a Communist because the pizza delivery guy in my neighborhood has a Russian accent or something. :-)

T-Rav said...

Personally, my reaction to the Detroit ad was "meh." I wasn't offended by it by any means, but I wasn't really inspired either. I thought the ad they had last year was much better.

I thought Jay Leno's reaction to the ad was the best. "'It's halftime in America'? Well, bad news: China's got the ball, and we're down 15 trillion!"

T-Rav said...

Scott, you should know that having a pizza delivery guy with a Russian accent in your production means you have been conditioned by Bolsheviks to see the Soviets as the good working people being exploited by greedy American capitalists. So yes, in fact, you are a Communist. :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, You are right that the only way to change the system is from inside it. And I have to wonder if Cain were still in the race if that would have changed things last night? It was clear all the local party officials were on the Rick bus. We even had a state senator show up who, while claiming to be neutral because his position required him to be neutral, told us what for a great guy Rick Santorum is in person and how dedicated he really is to stop abortion. He also gave us good news! The Colorado GOP is really, really close to winning one chamber of the government... because voters are finally coming around to the need for moral leadership. Yep, keep doing the same thing over and over and someday the result will change.


On the Eastwood thing, I have NO doubt that this was political, though I don't think Eastwood knew that. I think this was Chrysler paying Obama a Super Bowl sized favor. I am certain of that. And I'm thrilled it blew up in their faces. My only point is that once you've won, to keep piling on with article after article gets to the point of generating a backlash and I think we're at that point.

Hmm. I guess they decided they couldn't risk angering the Catholic Church in swing states... where Catholics are a large percentage of the vote.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, We may just have to agree to disagree.

The facts are these. Romney was a moderate. He now claims to be a conservative. He has laid out a consistently conservative position on every issue.

Newt and Santorum were big-government cronies. They advocated all the things Romney advocated before he repudiated them.

i.e. in the past, Romney = Newt = Santorum.

BUT, Newt and Santorum continue to advocate those.

Hence, Rick and Newt are STILL on the left, whereas Romney claims to have had a conversion to the right.

i.e. in the now, Romney = Reagan, whereas
Newt = Santorum = old Romney

If Romeny is lying, then he's basically the same as Newt and Santorum. If he's telling the truth, then he's Reagan. Yet, the base claims they don't trust Romney's conversion, and therefore will support Rick/Newt.

In other words, rather than take the chance that Romney might be Reagan at the risk he is actually Rick/Newt, the base has decided to go with Rick/Newt.

That's like saying, "since the odds are low of winning the lottery, I will not buy a lottery ticket, I will instead shred my dollar."

How is that not tantrum thinking? That is classic, "I will cut off my nose to spite my face" thinking.


Also, this kind of argument makes it impossible for Romney to ever win them over. Why? Because any attempt to distance himself from the past is dismissed as being either an attempt to flipflop or a lie.

If this isn't tantrum thinking, why isn't the same logic applied to the other two who have the same past?


I'm not saying I love Romney, I don't. But to deny that his the most conservative of the three is simply wrong.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, I don't see it as likely either, though you never know. With other states starting to move up their primaries, we may end up with one big primary by accident.

BevfromNYC said...

Andrew what really makes me crazy is that abortion is NOT our most pressing issues right now and I am getting really tired of Conservatives making that THE bright line issue for which they measure candidates! This has been going on since Roe v. Wade was passed and it's just crazy. Pro-life v. Pro-Abortion CANNOT still be the only issue on which we judge the "conservative-ness" of our candidates. Sorry, but that's my truth.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I agree entirely and that's what bothers me at the core of the Eastwood thing.

Eastwood has earned the good will of conservatives with 40 years of conservative films and by being one of the few Hollywood stars who supported conservatism. And yet conservatives are ripping him apart as a traitor or a dupe for one advertisement which wasn't even overtly political and which probably struck him as rather patriotic.

It's a horrible way to treat a friend. And it will make other Hollywood conservatives leery of getting involved for fear that once they put themselves in the public sphere they can't win. Basically, who needs the aggravation?

And that means, the only political noises you will continue to hear out of Hollywood will be from doctrinaire leftists.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, LOL! I hadn't heard the Leno joke.

I didn't think much of the ad either way when I first saw it. It struck me as just another "please buy our cars" ad.

To me, the issue is really what I said in response to Scott (just above this comment)... conservatives are trying to turn a mole hill into a mountain of fire and all they are going to do is burn people like Clint Eastwood and other would-be conservatives.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, As T-Rav says, you're clearly a communist. Maybe the pizza guy should be Romanian?

tryanmax said...

Andrew, RE: "sounds like Obama" Maybe I was making the wrong point. The parallel I see between the Clint ad and the Romney comment is that the right abandons anything the left touches, even though it was theirs to begin with.

There's nothing un-conservative about everyone paying their own way; quite the opposite. But now that is an "Obama phrase." Similarly, Obama has been doing nothing but give pep-talks and try to sound Reaganesque. So the right reacts by rejecting pep-talks and Reaganesque rhetoric.

Maybe I'm just reading too into it, but if the left hasn't sorted this out and built a strategy based on that behavior, they soon will.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, I agree with you entirely. Here are my thoughts on this.

American has many issues that must be addressed. The loss of personal freedom. People becoming dependent on the government for a living. Companies robbing the taxpayer at will. The lack of jobs (zero growth in a decade). Over-regulation.

These are the things which are causing America to fail and are hurting millions of Americans every day and damaging our future. They must be addressed right now. Everything else is a secondary concern.

Yet, too many conservatives don't care about these issues. Team Ricky is the perfect example. All they care about is abortion and gays. The rest is all secondary to them and they are entirely indifferent to it.

This is lunacy.

For one thing, they are way outside the mainstream of America on this issue. I oppose gay marriage and gay rights on principle, for the reasons I’ve explained, but I also recognize that the public has spoken. It supports these things and they will happen. The end. No amount of moralizing about it will change that. And on the abortion issue, the public has spoken too. They don't like abortion, they don't want to fund it, they think it needs limits and safeguards, BUT they won't ban it.

The obsession with forcing every candidate to swear allegiance to seeking to change the constitution to ban abortion and stop gay marriage is very destructive. For one thing, it can’t happen... 0% chance. So this is nothing more than a so-con fantasy. Also, it is a diversion from better tactics that can change hearts and minds.

But even more importantly, it’s counter-productive. By demanding fealty to a position which the public finds intolerant and unacceptable, these conservatives are letting the Democrats will elections they shouldn’t. And through those wins, the Democrats are moving the ball further to the left on these very issues. Colorado is the classic example of this. The Religious Right has taken over the GOP here and pushes these issues. Before they did that, the ball never moved in one direction or the other on these issues. But since they turned the GOP into a theocracy, the ball has been moving left at incredible speeds because they’ve made themselves into a small minority party which can’t stop anything the Democrats do. It’s stupid.

Right now, America is at risk because people are becoming dependent on the government. For the Republican party to take itself out of the game by focusing on abortion and gays is stunning in it’s myopia.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, Ah, I misread you. That's a very good point. You are right. Conservatives have become very knee-jerk under Obama and quickly throw conservative ideas under the bus whenever Obama mentions them. It's a bad trait which I attribute to a total collapse of any intellectual capacity on the right. We have become an ideology of "anti-liberals" rather than conservatives. :(

Goldman Sachs Operative said...

Andrew

Don't listen to Indi...

bailouts are our freinds...

We should have bailouts twice a year...

They should be mandatory

Bwah HA HA HAAAAAA!!!!

Tim Geitner said...

Goldman Sachs Oeprative

Don't worry....

We have an unlimited supply of Bailout Cards at the Treasury department and we know how to game the card deck

AndrewPrice said...

Arg. The cronies have arrived.

Al Sharpton said...

Hey, what about my race cards...

Franky from the Rocky Horror Picture Show said...

"Cards for Sorrow...
Cards for Pain...."

Hey I did not know that song was political

Kittens Disorganized said...

So sorry, Sockpuppets, but when you tried to unioninze you became useful bits of idiot yarn.

Although, you are still invited to the kittens' playdate...

wiggly yarn, mmmmmeow!

rlaWTX said...

ya know, for 2nd Amendment folks, you'd think conservatives could figure out how to not shoot themselves in the foot on such a regular basis.

AndrewPrice said...

Man, I step away for a minute and it becomes sockpuppet city around here!

AndrewPrice said...

rlaWTX, Isn't that the truth. Conservatives are very good at hurting their own causes. And we do it is so many different ways on issue after issue.

And I'll tell you, I think the real problem this election cycle began with the Chris Christie youtube video and it all went downhill from there. That was the moment all the conservatives stopped thinking and started emoting their way through this process.

rlaWTX said...

now we're Glee kids "emoting" our way through... < shudder >

AndrewPrice said...

Yep, that's what we've become. How sad.

Lefty Sock Puppet Union Enforcer said...

Hey, we will go to whatever playdates we wish, capeesh!

Kittens Disorganized said...

Mr. Enforcer, are you made of wonderful, wiggly yarn too????

If so, then of course you can come anytime!!!

tryanmax said...

Look what I foun-- *trips over a sockpuppet* Ooff!

Well, that was interesting. They've got the Limbaugh parody up at BH for anybody who missed it.

Mayor of Sockpuppet City said...

To All Citizens of Sockpuppet City:

There will be a meeting of all representatives of the respective sockpuppet-related unions to discuss terms of the public sockpuppet contracts. The public will be forced...er requi...er encouraged to attend.

Time and date to be announced.

rlaWTX said...

Have y'all read "Hunger Games"? Young adult fiction, about to be released as a movie...

rlaWTX said...

T - gotta watch out for those bits of yarn...

AndrewPrice said...

And now the sockpuppets are organizing. Wonderful.

tryanmax, Thanks for the link. That's pretty funny. Well handled by Rush.

tryanmax said...

In regards to sock puppet unionization: "Resist We Much!"

Patti said...

i'm with you andrew: TAKE THE VICTORY, cause baby, it was sweet.

T-Rav said...

ATTENTION ALL SOCKPUPPETS.

Don't forget that I am your Emperor. I gave you your power, and I can take it away. I see it's been fun and games on the thread on the post this afternoon, but any further talk of unionizing or other such independent activities will cease, or you will be dealt with. This is your first and last warning. That is all.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, The sockpuppets seem to have gotten out of control. I'm not sure how that happened, but it did. :(

AndrewPrice said...

Patti, Absolutely. It was a very nice victory. Obama made himself look like an idiot. Let's enjoy the moment and move on... not hound Clint Eastwood.

T-Rav said...

(sigh) Andrew, I leave for a few hours and there are unsupervised sockpuppets running amok. This is why I should never take a night off. :-/

AndrewPrice said...

I know, they just starting coming out of the woodwork. It was sockpuppet chaos around here!

Koshcat said...

What did I say yesterday about the type of people who go to caucuses?

As for the Eastwood ad, I really didn't pick up a rah-rah Obama feel from it. I thought that they were just building on their ad campaign from the last year. I thought it missed the mark and fell short of last years ad. At least Eminem is from Detroit and the song fit perfectly. This years add was gloomy. Yeah, it's half-time for America and time to change quarterbacks but I am optomistic about the country. Chrysler not so certain.

I really liked the other FIAT ad. I don't care if she was Romanian, she was hot. I also liked the sandman Kia ad. A fast car makes your heart pump and adrenaline flow. The ad should do this too. The Chevy Sonic ad was aimed at a younger crowd, but works. Set to the song "We are Young" by Fun the little car looks fun. The chevy truck ad was just dumb. Really, the only cars running will be unscratched chevy trucks? BS. My wife thinks I'm over thinking the ad, my arguement is that is the problem with the ad. The car chasing the volkwagon, the Audi vampire ad, and the Seinfeld ad (along with the Eastwood ad) were terrible because you never saw the car, what it could do, or why I should by it.

How's that for being off topic?

AndrewPrice said...

Koshkat, I didn't see your comment until after I came home again, but you were right. Not a pleasant night.

I didn't see the Eastwood ad as overtly political either and I certainly didn't connect it to Obama when I first saw it. But it clearly did upset a lot of people.

I'm glad I'm not the only one to think the Seinfeld ad was horrible. It struck me as silly from the getgo... so what if he's not number one? And then you never saw the car. I thought the Chevy truck ad was rather uncreative. It struck me as "yeah, ok, I see why you thought that would be a good message, but whatever, it wasn't."

I saw the Audi Vampire ad a couple days before and I enjoyed it the first time I saw it. Unfortunately, I didn't realize it was for the car, I thought it was an ad for halogen headlights. So it kind of failed in that regard. But I did enjoy the idea.

Tennessee Jed said...

I do think a lot of this has been driven by right wing pundits. I happened to post over at Big Journalism asking if Ricky hadn't endorsed Specter over Pat Toomey in Pa. senate. That garnered a bunch of "thumbs down." People at this site tend to be more issue oriented, but a lot of voters on both ends of the spectrum tend to be emotional and don't pay enough attention. I don't like it, but understand it.

tryanmax said...

Andrew, wow did the vampire ad fail! It wasn't even for halogen headlamps. They were featuring their new LED headlamps.

As to the sockpuppets, am I entitled to compensation for damages from my earlier "incident"?

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, In that event, it clearly failed. I was pretty sure it was an ad for halogen lights at some auto parts store.

Sorry, no compensation. You agreed to waive any damages when you clicked on our link. The waiver says we can sell your children too... but we won't. We'll only use that power if they turn out to be terrorists. Trust us. ;)

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, I think the pundits are very much to blame. They are in the business of generating ratings, not helping conservatism. So they try to sensationalize things because that's what brings the audience. Rational discussion doesn't bring audiences. So everything is an outrage, everything is do or die, and it's always evil-commie-RINOs versus genuine 'merkans.

That, unfortunately, encourages people to act emotionally and tribal.

DUQ said...

Andrew & Jed, I think you are right about the pundits. I don't ever recall conservatives being as rude and divisive to each other as they have been in the past year, nor do I ever recall them getting into these infatuation moments with candidates. It seems like everything is about knee-jerk reaction and insta-judments of utopia and metaphysical wrong. There is no such thing as good faith disagreement anymore. I think that's the tone that is being broadcast on the radio, on television and in print/web from the talking heads.

DUQ said...

Also, I'm glad T-Rav is back to control the sockpuppet problem! Those things breed like rabbits, or is it cats? ;)

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, I see that too. That's one reason I go back to this Chris Christie youtube video.

We've discussed Christie and found him sorely lacking in the conservatism department. Yet, he had one good 30 second clip on youtube and the next day people were calling him the only conservative in the party. Bandwagons started forming and if you didn't hop on board then you were a dirty RINO.

Then came a succession of other conservatives -- Bachmann, Rick Perry, Newt I, Herman Cain, Newt II, etc. etc. And in each instance, the moment they got noticed they became the only conservative in the party and if you didn't jump on the bandwagon, then you were a dirty RINO.

People like Rush, Hannity and Coulter never once bothered to look into their records, they just ran with them. When bad things were pointed out, they dismissed those concerns, but simultaneously attacked the other candidates for similar issues. And they played an us versus them game with this nebulous "the establishment."

Then you had the smears (Perry and Cain in particular), and these same people just savaged the candidates for things they had been criticizing liberals for for years, i.e. massive intellectual inconsistency.

IMO, this unhinged conservatism. It turned it into an ideology of who can scream the loudest where facts, principles and consistency no longer mattered.

And this stretched far beyond the election itself. Think about the budget deals or this idea of reshaping the federal government. In both cases, we lost the long term win because people instantly freaked out about helping Obama in any way.

This has become a problem and it bodes very poorly for our chances of resetting the country in a conservative direction.

tryanmax said...

I used to bristle at the assertion that the two political sides are no different. Now, I'm afraid that it's becoming true.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, I have to say, this is not the "conservative movement" I grew up with. When I was younger, in the age of Reagan, before we had "talking heads" you got conservatism from very smart columnists like Walter Williams, Thomas Sowell, and William Buckley. National Review was the conservative Bible.

This meant conservatism was highly intellectual. It was calm. It was rational. Then you had Reagan who presented all the other aspects -- the common sense and the passion. But he did it without invective, without sarcasm and without hate. He never attacked other conservatives, he simply stated when he disagreed.

But these days, so much of conservatism has become a drunken brawl between people whose motives I sincerely doubt, i.e. people who are more interested in ratings than helping the cause. And so much of it is angry. It is honestly shocking to me and a little depressing.

I think it also explains to me why we are going backwards now rather than forwards as a cause.

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