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RUSH: Mike in New York City, hello, sir. Glad you waited. Nice to have you with us.

CALLER: How you doing, Rush?

RUSH: Good.

CALLER: I was listening to a local radio talk show this morning. It’s the Joe and Mika show, Joe Scarborough.

RUSH: Oh, yeah.

CALLER: And he said he attended CPAC this weekend.

RUSH: Yeah.

CALLER: He was talking about how well you did, but he got to the point where he was saying that he thought that this message of wanting Obama to fail was kind of going over the top a little bit, that —

RUSH: Did Joe tell you what part of Obama’s agenda he wants to succeed? Is Joe in favor of the tax increases? Is Joe in favor of universal health care? Is Joe in favor of universal education? Is Joe in favor of cap and trade? What did Joe tell you about the Obama agenda he wants to succeed?

CALLER: Well, he didn’t. He did a lot — like the rest of the media does — he generalized the statement that you’ve made about his policies, the generalized statement that you want everything to fail.

RUSH: Did you call Joe? Did he say how any of what he advocates today helped him get elected in 1994 to the House of Representatives?

CALLER: I spoke to Joe, and in the address I said, ‘Joe, I think you’re missing the mark, Joe. I think Rush doesn’t want him to fail as a person. He wants his policies to fail because the policies are what have taken us down the wrong road.’ And I said, ‘What would you rather do, let his policies run the full term and prolong the suffering, or try to do what we can to slow them down and cut the suffering short?’ And with that, he paused, and he said, ‘You know, you’ve got a point.’

RUSH: Well, good, maybe you made some headway. I’m mystified. You know, Joe Scarborough is not a dumb guy. He got elected to Congress from Pensacola in 1994, part of the — I mean that was a revolution. That was a revolution. That was the Contract with America days. That was overthrowing the Democrats. That was getting rid of Fort Worthless Jim Wright. That was an amazing period. Joe typifies one of the things that’s very frustrating in all of us. There’s a blueprint out there for success, and so many of them seem to have forgotten it or now for some reason eschew it and think it’s not applicable, that somehow those strategies and core beliefs need to be moderated or modified to adapt to the current clime. They do. Somebody sent me a note this morning and said, ‘You know, we need to come out here with a statement that says we’re all for solutions.’ I said conservatism’s the solution! I made the point in the speech on Saturday, our side is currently caught up in the never-ending well, the bottomless pit well of arguing policy with the Democrats. They advance their health care bill; they advance their Porkulus bill; they advance the budget, and we start discussing it in terms of policy, when it’s a violation of our principles.

If we stand up for our principles, if we are governed by our principles, if we lead our lives by virtue of our principles, the policy takes care of itself. You don’t need a policy to come up with Walmart voters. What is a Walmart voter, anyway? What do you think is meant when people on our side say we’ve gotta come up with a plan to go get the Walmart voter. I assume the Walmart voter, the way they’re thinking, is a lower middle class poor person who goes to Walmart because he can’t go anywhere else, because prices elsewhere are too high and that person needs government help in order to live so we need to come up with a way to tell that person we don’t hate government. My reaction to that as a conservative and as an American is that’s an American citizen first, it’s a human being, it’s a human being that’s shopping at Walmart, but as that human being shops at Walmart I’m sure that human being hopes to improve his and his family’s lot in life or her or her family’s lot in life, everybody in this country, it’s always been about improving our standard of living, and this has been the one country in the world where that has been the promise.

If there was ever an American dream, it was that, that you had an opportunity every year with your own ambition, your own hard work, your own desire, your own passion to improve your life. And by doing so you improved the lives of all your members of your family and your neighborhood and your community at the same time. So why not look at a Walmart voter as somebody who just wants a better life? Why not look at a Walmart voter and say, ‘You have what it takes, you are an American. You have ample opportunity. You have more opportunity than you know. You do not need to become a ward of the state in order to have more than what you can buy at Walmart. And what’s standing in your way, Walmart voter, is a bunch of people who want to unionize Walmart and raise prices at Walmart so that you don’t get any value going there. What’s standing in your way are liberal Democrats who want to force you to go to the government. Take a look people who live off the government, Walmart voter, and tell me if you want to join them, ’cause you can, it’s very easy, just quit your job, apply for unemployment, and live off the government. You can get 24 grand a year. You can do it. You can do it right now.’

But you want more than that, so we as conservatives need to tell every American, ‘You have what it takes. We believe in you. We have all the faith and confidence in the world in you. We want to help get obstacles and boulders out of your way. We want to make sure that all the opportunity that you see people around you accessing, you can too. There’s no reason you can’t.’ Now, that’s not a policy. It’s a philosophy. Now, if you want to articulate or write a policy for it from the government, go ahead, but I don’t think it takes it. It takes a leader motivating and inspiring people and telling them how good they can be, telling them how much better and more they have in them than they know, because they’re being told by others they don’t have enough and they don’t have anything, they don’t have what it takes. The Democrats and the liberals look at these people with contempt. The more independent you are, the more able you are to provide for yourself and to secure your own happiness and economic security the greater threat you are to Democrats. They can’t control you.

So I don’t know why we need to come up with a policy using government to go get these voters. ‘But, Rush, but, Rush, isn’t the idea to win elections?’ Well, let me ask you a question, let’s say that your 15- or 16-year-old walks into the room and tells you, ‘You know, Dad, Mom, your rigid morality, that’s not for us anymore. We’re not going to be bound by that kind of rigid morality. It’s not the way it was 50 years ago, Dad.’ More than likely the parent of today will say, ‘Yeah, and I feel bad I’ve lost touch with you, son.’ When I was a kid my parents told me when I was wrong. They knew I didn’t know better, I was too young, I hadn’t lived enough to know right from wrong in every instance, so they tried to help me. They tried to tell me when I was wrong, and I still tried to get around ’em. All kids do. But my parents didn’t get out of the way and say, ‘Oh, oh, okay you want to do that, well, go right ahead.’ They might have said one time, ‘Yeah, go ahead, but when you leave, don’t come back. If you want to live on your own like that under your rules, then fine, go get a job and leave my house.’ I think my dad said that to me a couple times. ‘You want to live your own life, go provide for it.’

Well, why should we treat voters who may want things that are destructive for themselves, why do we have to acquiesce and say, ‘Oh, you want the government to have a plan for you so that you have this, oh, is that what you want from us conservatives? Oh, we conservatives misunderstood. That’s what we’ll give you.’ That’s what people in the party are saying, and they are dead wrong. So I told people in the speech, ‘Don’t treat voters like kids. Respect their intelligence.’ Elected leaders are just that. They’re leaders. This isn’t hard. This is not hard. It’s frustrating that so many of our people who have been elected Republicans and know the blueprint, for some reason now want to appear smarter and holier than thou and less strident. I’m not strident. I’m passionate. I love this country so much, I love the American people so much, I look at what’s happened to me, and you don’t know how much I wish everybody could experience it.

I’m not like a Democrat elitist who thinks you’re not capable of it and you should be happy with the crumbs that you get. I want this to be the greatest damn place on earth forever, and that requires great individuals. Great individuals need freedom to become great or sometimes so much oppression that they rebel against it and become great. Regardless, we need greatness. I’m a little long. I’ve gotta take a brief time-out. In the meantime, Mike, try to call Scarborough back tomorrow and ask him for a list of agenda items that Obama’s trying to advance that he supports, that he hopes succeed. National health care, national education, universal education, whatever it is, cap and trade, gasoline tax increases, income tax increases, you ask him what of Obama’s agenda he hopes succeeds.

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