EDITOR OF REDSTATE
Morning Briefing for November 25, 2009
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Just a reminder, the Morning Briefing is going to take off Thanksgiving Day and the day after to recover from the rampant gluttony, screaming kids, football, and did I mention the deliciously delightful gluttony of Thanksgiving with my in-laws. They know how to use bacon drippings! Yum.
The Senate healthcare bill has numerous flaws – but you needn’t know the details to know that it erodes freedom, restricts your ability to care for your family according to your wishes, costs trillions of dollars, increases taxes, increases premiums and is so massive that it is impossible to comprehend fully. In fact, the 2074 page behemoth in the Senate is an interesting study in word choices that tell you all you need to know about the bill. See below for a list of select words – and I am not the only one to do such a review (I noticed, e.g., Lee DeCovnick over at American Thinker from yesterday here).
The word “shall” appears 3607 times, but “freedom” only twice. The word “penalty” and its various forms 163 times, but “liberty” doesn’t appear at all. The word “require” and its forms 1025 times, but the “Constitution” is absent both literally and figuratively. The word tax and its forms appears 183 times, fee 234 times, and “Internal Revenue” 104 times. Other words like apply, rule, culture, diverse, enforce, provide, authority – all words that appear repeatedly, while a word like “own” appears only 11 times. See the full list below. It is quite telling.
Roll Call reports the Democrats intend to bring up immigration next year as a big fight leading into the 2010 elections. Their approach will be predictable — support extended family immigration, amnesty for all illegals, and no input from the GOP.
Lindsey Graham is no doubt beside himself with delight over this one.
This got me thinking though. The GOP is said to be absolutely opposed to immigration in all cases — some of you might like that, but it does not sell with the general voter and I don’t really know any Republican who holds that view. First, it is politically an untenable position. Second, very few of us are really opposed to all immigration. Being a second generation American, I cannot see myself being in favor of sealing up the borders in all cases whatsoever.
However, it seems a Democrat plan to allow full amnesty and extended family immigration will be politically unpopular not just with middle class white voters, but with a great deal of immigrants, Hispanic and otherwise, many of whom are having a hard enough time finding work without competing with a new influx of job seekers. I think the GOP has the ability to beat the Democrats at their own game on immigration next year if done right.
I typically see eye to eye with RNC Committeeman Jim Bopp, but we are going to have to agree to disagree on a proposed resolution to be debated at the RNC’s Winter meeting. The media is calling it a “purity test” for Republicans. In essence, candidates would be presented with a list of vaguely worded issues and the RNC would be asked to withhold money from any candidate that disagreed with more than two.
Rome long ago stopped selling indulgences, but conservatives keep right on selling them. Look, for example, at NY-23. The moment Dede Scozzafava signed ATR’s no new tax pledge, she was absolved of all her sins, including voting for 198 tax increases in the New York legislature.
Therein lies the inherent problem with candidates signing off on well meaning pablum — there are no teeth and the party will not serve as its own enforcer.
While I applaud the desire of conservative RNC members to try to put the train back on the tracks, I am afraid this will do what the ATR pledge did in Scozzafava’s case — give a lot of candidates cover to pretend to be conservative.
And no doubt unicorn rides, seeing as the third is just as likely to happen as the first two.
In case you’re wondering, this call is due to the announcement that census worker Bill Sparkman killed himself for the insurance money – which means that he was not murdered by conservative monsters from the id, or murdered for ideological purposes – or, in fact, was murdered at all. I’m sure that this would be an embarrassment for everyone on the Other Side who flogged this particular narrative, except this would imply that they cared about Sparkman in the first place. Which they didn’t, so expect a grudging bare minimum, at best.
Four more US Soldiers died in Afghanistan yesterday as we continued to wait anxiously for Obama to make up his mind about how to respond to General McChrystal’s report. During the pre-surge days in Iraq, 4 dead soldiers was enough for every major news outlet to scream from the rooftops about the costs of war. Now? Hardly a whisper.
Why is it so hard, Mr. President, to DO something about Afghanistan-even if you have to adjust your strategy again later-given that doing NOTHING has only gained you more fallen heroes? Since taking office, YOUR casualty count is nearly DOUBLE that of George Bush’s worst year as Commander in Chief. Why? Since receiving McChrystal’s assessment back in late August, your casualty count is rapidly approaching half of the entire year’s total. Again, Mr. President, WHY?