RUSH: Let me take a stab at this. And again, it may well be that these people I'm talking about will be identified. I'm not going to myself, but it's not about them. I was just stunned when I read this. The subject of the first post is an attempt to explain why the Republican leaders in Congress so badly blew the payroll tax cut battle. (interruption) Well, not smoldering about it, but I'm fascinated to read what people think went wrong. And here's the nut of this one.
"What’s even more ominous is that this national suicide attempt they’re advocating for appears to be great politics! As Tucker Carlson said at an ALEC speech in New Orleans last year, the problem here is very simply that 'people like free stuff.' The Democrats have realized that they can cobble together winning electoral coalitions by offering the middle class a ton of free stuff. This is not a 'safety net' for the poor and down-trodden, mind you. It’s more free stuff for people who already have more cars, TVs, and phones than they can afford. That’s the basic idea of the subsidies in Obamacare. ... Any extension in the payroll tax cut without a spending cut offset is a travesty. In fact, we should have insisted that the extension be offset with entitlement reform, to make no mention of spending cuts."
After spending 80% of the post on what the Republicans shoulda done but didn't do, then there is this: "That’s why it would be wrong to blame Speaker Boehner for this defeat. The fault lies elsewhere." Okay, well, that intrigued me. "The Democrats’ bid to expand the entitlement state for political benefit is a mortal threat to the future of our country."
That's very true. And it's been true for 30 years. I got the impression it was just recently realized. "The Democrats’ bid to expand the entitlement state for political benefit is a mortal threat to the future of our country. But the fact that these collectivist schemes continue to play out in their favor is not the fault of conservative leaders. It is, rather, a sign that Americans have lost their way. We conservatives have to make a much more convincing case that the road to a better society lies in the direction of self-reliance and limited government, and away from the debilitating entitlement state to which the Democrats’ poisoned carrots are leading us."
I don't know how to express this. We shoulda known this for 30, 40, 50 years. "We conservatives have to make a much more convincing case that the road to a better society lies in the direction of self-reliance and --" Yeah, well... (sigh) I can't do this without coming down hard on this guy, and that's not my point. It really isn't the point. What I'm trying to say or what I'm not saying is that, yeah, we're talking basic conservatism and why is it so hard for it to be found in conservative publications? Conservative publications are all tied up in the horse race aspects: conservatives ripping Romney to shreds or alternately ripping Santorum to shreds or ripping Newt. Conservatives aren't doing conservatism. This is what is frustrating. Yeah, the concept of self-reliance, we have to do a better job pushing self-reliance, yeah, duh! Where's it been? We're just now figuring this out? Are we 30 years behind what's been going on here?
Since FDR, the Democrats have been countering that, and Obama has codified the notion that self-reliance is not the ticket. Self-reliance is painful, it's failure, you're not gonna get anywhere. The deck's stacked against you. The future is for you to let us take care of you. I don't know. The second one is: "The idea that these services will be 'free' runs against the most basic understanding of economics. It’s like the Democrats and the mainstream media think calling expanded coverage 'free' makes it free. If there’s no free lunch, there are no free abortifacients either." Yeah, we're just now discovering that people actually think that free is free. Where have these eggheads been? I'm still not expressing this right. My bad.
I have to continue to think about this because this is, for some reason my gut, my instinct, is telling me this is important, as it relates to the so-called conservative movement and a failure taking place within it. But I don't want to focus on just these two people. That's not really the point of this and that's, sadly, if I'm not careful, where this is gonna end up.