Friday, November 10, 2006


candygramA number of people I know are conservatives who either sat out the recent elections or voted for the Libertarian candidates (the libertarians were write-ins in NC this year.) They did so to send a message to the Republicans that they were fed up with them. My position is that you should vote in such a way as to maximize the likelihood that the actions of those elected will be beneficial for you, your family and your community -- and that any messages you want to send to the candidates should be sent through some other channel. All of which is to say, I held my nose and voted for Republicans.

Now that the election is over -- and everyone and everything for which I voted has been nicely defeated -- I have done my duty and can admit that I will not shed a single tear for any of the losers for whom I cast my ballot. I am deeply worried about the welfare of the country now that the party that cares only for power has replaced the party that cares mostly for power in the House and Senate, while we are at war, but let me make myself clear: It is a bad thing for the country that the Democrats have assumed the majority in Congress -- but that doesn't mean that the Republicans deserved to win. Clearly they did not.

So here is my message that I want to send to the Republicans:

I am tired of the shrillness and the polarization in American politics and I want it to stop. I don't care that the other guys started it or that they are another octave shriller than you are. Someone has to be the grownups in this and I expect it to be you.

Why on earth are you guys so obsessed with wedge issues that split your own base? I stand politically well to the right of 95 percent of the US population and yet, because there are one or two issues on which I differ from other strong conservatives, I constantly find myself lumped in with the "moderate" Republicans and on the wrong side of the Republican message. The campaign felt more like an effort to purge heretical Republicans than an attempt to get anyone but the "select few" to vote for the Republican candidates. As an example, I support a border fence and strong enforcement of the border, and at the same time, I support a guest worker program and a way for hard-working illegals currently in the country to earn the right to stay. We need to crack down on illegal immigration because, at its current level, it constitutes way too much of a good thing. The anti-immigration Republicans seemed to feel that they could "energize their base" by playing on their fear and resentment of illegal immigrants. Maybe they were right with some of their base but they were pumping a dry hole with me. The specter of hordes of Mexicans spreading pine-straw, flipping burgers and picking strawberries just doesn't scare me like it seems to scare some other Republicans.

The mainstream media have a double standard for ethics. When a Democrat takes money from agents of another country and hides it in his freezer with last year's freezer-burned turkey soup the New York Times will talk about how, on the other hand, he has been a champion of the poor and the oppressed. When a Republican appears at a fund raiser for an issue-based organization any funds raised will be suggested to be clandestine contributions to his campaign. When a Democrat goes on a Brokeback-Mountain camping trip with an underage congressional page he is praised for his courage in challenging homophobic Puritanism, but when a Republican sends a creepy and pathetic instant message the press digs their old Jeffrey Dahmer articles out of the archives, changes the name and runs them again. All of this means that life isn't fair. The press sets different ethical standards for Republicans... and so do I. You guys have been acting like a bunch of Democrats. This is unacceptable and must stop. I expect more from you.

And speaking of acting like Democrats, what's with all the spending? It's hard to buy votes from Republican voters. They have a long memory for taxes and when you hand a Republican a dollar that you have snagged for him out of the pork barrel he is likely to be struck by the sense that there is something familiar about it. Say, he will think, that looks a lot like a dollar I had in my wallet last April 14th.

Finally, now that you have p*ssed away your majority please play nice with the Democrats. They are coming into power having made promises, and raised expectations, that they would do a number of impossible and/or foolish things. Many of them are now looking for a graceful way to weasel out of those promises and to disappoint those expectations. Please help them. For the good of the country don't remind them of their agenda -- and for God's sake don't hold them to their promises.


Joel Haas said...

Lee, you are not as lonely a Repub as you think. I was at a gun and knife show at the NC Fairgrounds this weekend --hardly a demographic to excite Howard Dean--and found a guy doing a land office business selling rabidly anti Bush/Cheney Rummy "deception dollars."

BigLeeH said...

Hello Joel, Thanks for dropping by.

I've been to the Dixie Gun and Knife show in past years and it's quite an event. Other people I know might find it terrifying to be around so many toting rednecks but I always come away impressed with how well behaved rednecks must be since they are clearly very well armed but they account for so little violent crime.

I find myself sitll a bit lonely, though. I'm afraid that your dealer in "deception dollars" and I might find each other poor company. Bush, Cheney and Rumsfield are among the few Rebublicans I generally tend to like.