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RUSH: Amazing story in the Los Angeles Times today by Michael Finnegan and Mark Z. Barabak: ‘Democrats Take Obama Shift in Stride,’ by grabbing their ankles. Now, they didn’t put that in the headline; I added that. But a lib gets it in this story. ‘As Barack Obama moves to broaden his appeal beyond loyal Democrats, a chorus of anger and disappointment has arisen from the left. But those voices are a distinct minority because the party has a more pressing concern: winning in November. On Wednesday, Obama again bucked his liberal allies, voting in the Senate to give legal immunity to phone companies,’ on the FISA bill. ‘Reaction has been swift and — aside from the blogosphere and some newspaper columnists — notably mild. ‘We’re willing to work through this period,’ said Richard Parker, president of the liberal Americans for Democratic Action, one of the party’s most enduring advocacy groups. In the long run, he said, the organization’s ‘serious concerns’ about Obama are far outweighed by its disagreements with Republican John McCain.’ We’re willing to work through this period?

They take the shift of Obama to the center in stride. If that’s true, it is because they know he doesn’t mean a word of it. And I’m here to tell you he doesn’t mean a word of it. All of this is smoke and mirrors. If he does get elected, he’s going to do everything he can to establish a pure pro-leftist agenda. Kathryn Kolbert, president of the People for the American Way, ‘At some point, it does cause a problem. Is he there yet? Probably not.’

Now, ‘Ben Austin, a former Clinton White House political deputy and early Obama supporter, called the senator’s perceived drift ‘unnecessary and potentially counterproductive’ for a candidate who aspires to be a transformational figure.’ Can we let go of that? The idea that Obama is a transformational figure or is transcending something has now been blown through the roof. They’re holding onto a mirage. They’re holding onto a myth. But here’s what Ben Austin said. He said it succinctly. This is the thing that has been driving me nuts ever since the Republican primaries began, it’s been driving me nuts as I listen to the so-called conservative intelligentsia in our media, said Ben Austin, former Clinton White House political deputy, ‘To the extent progressives see him as the Reagan of the left, Reagan didn’t tack toward the center. He moved the American electorate to the right.’ A liberal, Ben, they all know it, and that’s why they’re so scared of conservatism in the hands of an artful, communicative leader, because conservatism moves the electorate to the right. Conservatives do not move to the center, except we are now. Well, some of us are. You and I aren’t. But our conservative intelligentsia is moving to the center, our candidate has long since passed the center, on his way to the left. They tell us the era of Reagan is over, and they tell us we need a new kind of conservatism. And yet, and yet Obama moving to the right, he’s gotta find some way to get the support of the bitter clingers that he really truly resents and is embarrassed by.

I can’t tell you, it’s a mixture of emotions. On the one hand it’s hosannas. On the other hand it makes me so mad, because the Democrats know exactly the danger posed by conservatism. Ronald Reagan moved the electorate to the right. He didn’t go to the center. We expect the Democrats to tack all over the place because they’re phony baloney, plastic banana, good-time rock ‘n’ rollers from the get-go. We don’t expect our side to do it and in the process of doing it, telling us conservatism doesn’t work, that it’s old hat, that it’s old-fashioned, that it needs to be modernized, upgraded, version 2.0, whatever. Ronald Reagan moved the electorate to the right, and a lot of that electorate, by the way, is still there, and it’s just as upset as I am that it has been abandoned by its leadership. Am I right, my friends? I am talking about you. You know I’m right. I’m right even when I think I’m wrong. That’s why my accuracy rating documented to be almost always right 98.8%.

Let’s go to the phones. John in Church Hill, Tennessee. Glad you called, sir. Great to have you on the EIB Network. Hello.

CALLER: Mega dittos, Rush. Rush, instead of being embarrassed by Americans who don’t speak foreign languages, Obama should be ashamed, really ashamed that his NEA pals run schools that have graduates who can’t read or write English.

RUSH: Well, yeah, but, see, he’s not going to be embarrassed by his own people. I agree you’re right. The left ought to be embarrassed about this. But it’s their authorship that has created it. And not all of it is by accident, you understand out there, John.

CALLER: Sure I do. Rush, can I ask you a quick question?

RUSH: Of course, my son.

CALLER: Has Obama ever read a book on market economics that wasn’t a critique of it? I don’t think so.

RUSH: No. No. In fact, I don’t know how much he learned about whatever — since you bring that up, I got a couple bites, let me find them, it’s number three and four. You listen to these on the radio. Got your radio on, John?

CALLER: Yes.

RUSH: All right, listen to these on the radio. Now, these have nothing to do with economics. This is July 2nd, eight days ago out in Colorado Springs. Obama is speaking to the editorial board of the Military Times. There’s no teleprompter out there and no little wireless mike from campaign headquarters telling him what to say. The editor here says, ‘The size of our military has really been built on the military’s ability to be effective. It’s built very heavily on National Guard, very heavily on private contractors to provide everything from food service to aircraft service and gun-toting security. What are the proper rules for those different pieces and how should that change?’ Now, he interprets this to be a question. When he heard private contractors, he heard Blackwater, that’s the knee-jerk reaction. He wasn’t thinking of Kellogg Brown & Root who does the food services for Halliburton. He wasn’t thinking of Halliburton. He was thinking of Blackwater, those evil, murdering mercenaries who make more than our brave troops. You know, the left has their knee-jerk reactions, Blackwater, and they seethe. Say Halliburton or Cheney, and they get suicidal. So here is Obama and his answer.

OBAMA: When it comes to private contractors, there is room for private contractors working a mess hall, you know, providing basic supplies and — and doing some, uh, logistical work that might have been done in house in the past. I am troubled by the use of private contractors when it comes to, uh, potential armed engagement. I think it puts our troops at harm’s way, I think it creates some difficult morale issues when you’ve got private contractors who are getting paid ten times what an Army private is getting paid for work that is as risk — carries similar risk, when it comes to our Special Forces, what we’ve seen as a potential drain of — of our — some of our best trained Special Forces, and you can’t blame them if they can make so much more working for Blackwater than they can working as, uh, as a master sergeant. So the — you know, that, I think, is — that, I think, is a problem.

RUSH: I don’t think he understands who Blackwater is. I don’t think he understands what they do. They do not engage in combat operations per se. They’re a security outfit. When I went to Afghanistan, there was a crew of these guys. I had never heard of Blackwater at the time I was there, but these guys were former Special Forces. They had done their time, they had done their duty, and these guys, they were take no prisoners kind of guys, and they were secure, and they were armed to the hilt, and they drove the SUVs as we corkscrewed through downtown Kabul on our way to various sites, and you thanked God they were there. Now, in Kandahar, I did talk to one of the officers there who did point out that it was a problem when these guys are on the base because they are making six figures versus the enlisted people, but he said it is what it is, and we have to deal with it, but there’s something else that was sinister in Obama’s answer here, and it’s just to me, like the veterans bill that he rags McCain on for not supporting. It was loaded up with pork, drain enlisted troops out of the service, and now he’s complaining about private contractors draining enlisted troops out of the service, which is not what happens. So then the unidentified editor says, ‘Well, Blackwater would argue that they’re a bargain, that you get a higher level of ability, they can put people there. They can keep top level talent there perpetually.’

OBAMA: I’m not arguing that there are never going to be uses for private contractors in some circumstances. What I am saying is if you start building a military premised on the use of private contractors, and you start making decisions about armed engaged based on the availability of private contractors to fill holes in gaps, that over time you are, I believe, eroding the core of our military’s relationship to the nation and how accountability is structured.

RUSH: This is crazy.

OBAMA: You are privatizing something that is what essentially sets a nation state apart, which is the monopoly on — on violence, uh, and to set those kinds of precedents I think will lead us over the long term into, uh, some troubled waters.

RUSH: He doesn’t know what he is talking about now. He is strictly wandering aimlessly in vain search of a cogent thought. He wasn’t even coherent there. We played these bites because the caller said, ‘Do you think he understood anything in college about pro-market economics, did he read anything that was pro-market economics?’ This is embarrassing. He had no idea what he was talking about here. You heard it. A nation state should have a monopoly on violence via its military. And if you’re going to have these private contractors to fill holes and gaps you’re going to erode the core of the military’s relationship to the nation and how accountability is structured. What about winning? Yeah. Of course, it’s not defense, either. That’s exactly right. We’re not talking about people who are in the military, by hook or by crook, who cares how, who are defending the military violence, and as president he wants a monopoly on the violence of this country. Military action is just violence. I guarantee you you learn that in his elitist Ivy League classrooms as well.

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