Monday, October 14, 2013

The GOP will keep the House, and very likely win the Senate in 2014

American Thinker ^ | October 13, 2013 | Silvio Canto, Jr.

Nate Silver knows a thing or two about polls. His message about the GOP and the shutdown is worth sharing:

"The media is probably overstating the magnitude of the shutdown's political impact.
Remember Syria? The fiscal cliff? Benghazi? The IRS scandal? The collapse of immigration reform? All of these were hyped as game-changing political moments by the news media, just as so many stories were during the election last year. In each case, the public's interest quickly waned once the news cycle turned over to another story. Most political stories have a fairly short half-life and won't turn out to be as consequential as they seem at the time.
Or consider the other story from President Obama's tenure in office that has the most parallels to the shutdown: the tense negotiations, in 2011, over the federal debt ceiling. The resolution to that crisis, which left voters across the political spectrum dissatisfied, did have some medium-term political impact: Obama's approval ratings declined to the low 40s from the high 40s, crossing a threshold that historically marks the difference between a reelected president and a one-termer, and congressional approval ratings plunged to record lows.
But Obama's approval ratings reverted to the high 40s by early 2012, enough to facilitate his reelection. Meanwhile, reelection rates for congressional incumbents were close to their long-term averages.
. . .
My guess that President Obama is the one who has really been hurt here.
Why? Because he is the president, the CEO and the man who must lead.
Last, but not least, Nate Silver shoots down the 1995 narrative again ("The impact of the 1995-96 shutdowns is overrated in Washington's mythology") and the polls about the shutdown ("The polling data on the shutdown is not yet all that useful, . . .
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Five reasons why government shutdown points to breakup of U.S.

Transition Network ^ | 10-11-13 | Erik Curren

Secession is not just for unreconstructed Confederates anymore. On both the right and the left, Americans increasingly see Washington as the problem and local autonomy as the solution.
Despite all the talk, the federal government shutdown hasn’t greatly affected daily life for most Americans so far. Some have been hit hard, especially federal employees, those receiving certain benefit payments, and tourists planning to visit the Smithsonian or a national park. But as apocalypses go, a couple weeks without “non-essential” federal services has been underwhelming for most American families.
Things could get worse if the closure were to extend from weeks into months. But judging by past shutdowns, it’s likely that Obama and Congressional Republicans will soon reach a deal to restart the federal services that have been suspended since Congress failed to pass a funding bill by the start of the federal fiscal year on October 1.
The World War II Memorial will then be open again. But that won’t mean that America can go back to normal. The new normal
Normal ended for most of us when the economy crashed in 2008 and the government shutdown shows definitively that no help can be expected from Washington for ordinary citizens who continue to suffer. Despite economists having declared the Great Recession finished in June 2009, in today’s economy most Americans outside the top 1% are still battling financial hardship:
One in five families relies on food stamps, food banks and other feeding programs to make sure that they’ll have enough to eat next week
Overdue student loan debt and youth unemployment remain at all time highs
For the last decade, the stock market has soared, helping the rich, but middle-class household income has declined
It’s clear that America’s middle class is actually suffering through what Paul Krugman has called a new Depression or even what James Howard Kunstler has more ominously dubbed The Long Emergency. Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair
The shutdown demonstrates beyond doubt that Washington, plagued by partisan intransigence and captured by corporate special interests, has finally become unable to effectively govern the United States.
In 2009, early in the economic downturn, Paul Starobin made the case in his book After America: Narratives for the Next Global Age that governing America from Washington has become such an unwieldy system as to justify alternative arrangements. His perspective is even more prescient after the government shutdown.
“The present-day American Goliath may turn out to be a freak of a waning age of politics and economics as conducted on a super-sized scale — too large to make any rational sense in an emerging age of personal empowerment that harks back to the era of the yeoman farmer of America’s early days,” Starobin wrote in the Wall Street Journal.
It’s easy to laugh at Texans who’ve threatened for years to leave the Union. But with dysfunction in Washington sure to grow, Texas secessionists may ultimately have the last laugh.
Starobin comes at the problem of an oversized America from the right-wing — he rails against imperial overreach by President Obama and the expansion of social programs that Republicans refer to as “Big Government.”
But there are plenty of people on the left who also think that America has gotten too big to operate as a democracy. Just take the example of the secessionist movement in ultra-liberal Vermont, whose adherents want the freedom to eat local and organic and exclude nuclear power without interference from Washington.
While the mainstream media seem to find the idea of secession laughable at best, groups on both sides of the political edge are embracing the eventual breakup of the United States as not merely thinkable but even desirable. Secession from Oregon to Texas
Here are five reasons why secessionist movements like the microbrew-friendly Republic of Cascadia in the Pacific Northwest and the immigrant-unfriendly Texas Nationalist Movement may ultimately win some degree of autonomy from Washington:
Political Polarization — Does anyone think that, after Boehner and Obama make a deal to re-open the government, the two parties will begin to work harmoniously in the national interest anytime in the near future? Look for the trend of take-no-prisoners partisan warfare to ramp up, not down, in coming years, bringing the machinery of national government to a halt again and again through future battles over the federal debt, social programs, financial regulations and environmental protection. Partisan fighting will alienate voters and make clear the increasing impotence of the federal government.
Resentment of the One Percent — No one benefits more from centralized power than big corporations and the rich people who own them — and who pull the strings of power in Washington. Coming from opposite ends of the political spectrum, both Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party are populist movements critical of centralized power in both the government and the economy. As the economy continues to decline and government falters, movements on the political extremes will gain followers as more families have to struggle to keep their homes on part-time jobs. Americans who fall out of the middle class will grow angry and resentful at the rich for so cruelly rigging the system against the ordinary wage-earner.
Economic Collapse — The collapse of an economy that requires continuous growth but is stuck on a planet with finite resources may be unavoidable, but gridlock in Washington will help to bring it on sooner as the ripple effect from a decline in federal spending acts as a negative stimulus, killing jobs and causing businesses to close. After a few more government shutdowns, the next financial collapse could make 2008 look tame. As the national economy fails to deliver the prosperity that Americans used to expect, they’ll look more to economic solutions from local manufacturing to local currency.
Climate Chaos — Mounting costs to deal with the superstorms, derechos and other weather disasters that will become both more frequent and more damaging due to runaway climate change will stretch federal, state and local budgets to their breaking points. As schools, roads and social services are cut to pay for rebuilding hurricane-ravaged cities or constructing sea walls to protect coastal areas from rising seas, populations will grow restless. Initially, they’ll look to Washington for help. When that help disappoints or fails to arrive altogether, citizens will fall back on their states and localities, making the federal government increasingly irrelevant.
Peak Oil — By itself, depletion of fossil fuels will raise the cost of energy beyond the point at which transportation costs will make governing any nation of continental scale, whether the U.S. or Russia or China, impractical. In the long run, an ongoing reduction in travel by air, road and rail in response to rising costs for liquid fuels from crude oil will weaken the national ties forged in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries by the rise of those same forms of transportation. This will provide more slack to breakaway regions and secessionist movements. In the short-term, a 1970s-style energy crisis or some more catastrophic oil shock may be the Black Swan event needed to push the weakened and brittle edifice of national government and global trade over the edge into collapse.
All of these factors could clear the way for regional secession movements that could ultimately break up the U.S. and all of North America into half a dozen or more regional nations. In the meantime, as the economy continues to cool down, the climate continues to heat up and Americans get more cynical about Washington and Wall Street, campaigns for everything from local food to local money could coalesce into a grand localist wave like the Transition movement, which already boasts nearly 150 Transition Towns in the U.S. committed to building local autonomy.
In a future where central government has clearly lost control, that local autonomy could evolve into local sovereignty.

Ted Cruz and Mike Lee are Running the GOP -- and They are Winning

Rush ^ | October 14, 2013 | Rush Limbaugh


RUSH: Boehner offered Obama a clean debt ceiling bill. I mean everything Obama has asked for and he turned it down and said, "Nope, now you've got to do away with the sequester." And Boehner, poor Boehner, Boehner is -- by the way, I'm sorry. This is purely habitual. The table out here is not nearly as solidly attached to the wall, or the ceiling actually, as it is in Florida. Well, it's a broadcast quality table. It's just not anchored broadcast quality. Not a complaint, look, I do this by habit. I'm going to try to rein it in because I now how irritating it is. It would be irritating to me, so I'm going to try to rein it in.

Anyway, Boehner, at least according to the LA Times said, quote: "It was obvious Obama had no intention of negotiating with us in good faith." Now, that's true, but look at apparently what it took for that realization to settle in, when that could have been known from the get-go. It's what continually amazes me and I'm sure you. How can the Republicans not see what the Democrat agenda is? How do they continually fall for the notion that whatever the Democrats are talking about is what they really want? "We want to raise the debt limit." It's not about the debt limit!

When are the Republicans going to understand, and I'm dead serious about this, when are they going to understand that the objective here is to wipe them out. When are they going to understand that the pure, the only purpose of all of this is to effectively eliminate the Republican Party as anything viable, nothing more than a placeholder is all it's going to be if Obama and the Democrats get their way. There was never any desire to negotiate, never any desire to share ideas, never any desire to reach a compromise or come to some sort of agreement. The purpose every time -- and how many times has this taken place and yet somehow that message doesn't get through.

This is why, folks, I have been maintaining, and I'm sure that many of you have probably been frustrated at me for being a little bit absent reality in your mind. But since the Cruz/Lee faction got going, I have been making the point -- trying to anyway -- that the Republicans are winning, that at least the Cruz and Lee faction is winning. Last week, it was I think Thursday or Friday, I remember doing a monologue on how the Republicans' so-called conservative commentariat in Washington, inside the Beltway is out blaming Cruz and blaming Lee and blaming me, blaming the new media and blaming the Tea Party for this impasse.

 I made the point if it hadn't been for Cruz or Lee, we wouldn't be here. We wouldn't have the opportunity that we have. And Obama is stumbling. Obama is not prevailing. His approval number, take your pick, 41/37%. Then that Wall Street Journal/NBC poll hit on Friday and these Republicans started peeing their pants. And I wish I could have grabbed them by the shoulders, said, "Would you ignore that? That poll was designed for the exact reaction that you are portraying here." Well, it turns out, folks, that I, El Rushbo and others are not the only ones who see the past couple, three weeks, or month this way.

I've got a piece by Christopher Bedford here in the Daily Caller, and the headline of this piece: "How Cruz, Lee and Paul Shut Down Obama's Agenda." So it is possible in some parts of the media to get the truth of this. Here's a pull quote: "As one by one, impossible victories were won, observers saw the policy agenda of the president ... stagnate and stall: He hasn't won a single victory since his re-election. It's almost surreal. Sequester is tentatively in place," but believe me that's the new baby that the Democrats are trying to get rid of now. That's the latest thing they've demanded that the Republicans get rid of. Pretty soon they're going to be demanding a tax increase, which E.J. Dionne, Jr. does today in the Washington Post in his column.

They're going to throw it all in if they sense that the Republicans are getting close to caving. But the fact of the matter is sequester is in place, amnesty has been derailed. Say what you want, but the attention being focused on amnesty is -- well, it's not the attention being focused. Look at what happened. Obama opens up the National Mall for an amnesty rally, closed to veterans. I'm telling you the American people see this. The American people see what's happening, and they do not side with the Democrats on this outside the Beltway. They do not. Obama is not carrying the day on this. I know some of you might think that's crazy to say. Sequester's in place, amnesty is derailed. Gun control, they haven't gotten anything on that.

American forces are not involved in serious civil war, and it turns out here that Ted Cruz and Mike Lee have taken the helm of the GOP and that's why everybody in Washington's fit to be tied, including Republicans. The Tea Party is despised, even by Republicans. The Tea Party is hated, even by Republicans. It's hated by remnants of the Bush administration and all those people. It's hated by the Democrats. The Tea Party is despised by the Republican establishment of the consultancy group because they can't be controlled. Because there's not, or wasn't, at their forming anyway, a single leader.

Now here's how this story begins: "After Republicans drifted for years without a pilot, Sens. Ted Cruz and Mike Lee have taken the helm of the GOP, steering their party and its grassroots into a much-needed, head-on battle with the Democrats." Amen. The Democrats have been able to just run roughshod over everybody and anything in their way. Nobody has had the guts to oppose Obama, particularly in the Republican Party.

The American people had, but they haven't had any leadership until these two guys sprang up. They've commandeered a couple of people to join them, elected Republicans. But prior to that there was this abject fear of going after Obama. Race was a big factor, and also the polls in the media. Let's face it: Republicans are scared to death and they're rendered neutered by them. These guys don't care.

They are fighting the establishment of a socialist government that Obama and the Democrats are attempting to establish. God bless 'em. "On the campaign trail on the way to his win in November 2012, President Barack Obama promised to finish the work he'd gone to Washington to do: 'fundamentally transforming the United States,'" which is what he promised to do five days before he was inaugurated in 2009.

"Things look tough for the right in Washington today, but the reality is these three conservative Republicans, aided by friends in the Senate and the House, have dragged the president's ambitious agenda to a complete halt, throwing both him and Democrat Sen. Harry Reid on their heels and adding policy paralysis to the president's long list of post-election woes.

"While Republican leadership in the House was loud when scandals from Benghazi to the IRS unfolded, over the last year conventional wisdom in Washington has held that sequester would never happen; amnesty for illegal immigrants was a done deal; no sane Republican would stand against an assault-weapons ban after Sandy Hook; the GOP would bless a charge into Syria; and, well, fill in the blank: student loans?

"Climate change? The tea party was over and Washington, DC, was Obama's oyster," and it was smooth sailing. Nobody was going to stop him. "But then a strange thing happened. As one by one, impossible victories were won, observers saw the policy agenda of the president ... stagnate and stall: He hasn't won a single victory since his re-election. It's almost surreal," and I know this sounds like...

You ought to see the faces on the other side of the glass looking at me. They can't believe it. It's not their perception, and probably not yours. You think the Republicans are getting their clocks cleaned because you are judging the Republicans to be led by Boehner and McConnell, and on that basis you think they're getting their clocks cleaned. And maybe they are, but Cruz and Mike Lee aren't.

It's Cruz and Mike Lee, and the people that have decided to throw in with them, who are running things now. That's why everybody's so ticked off, folks! We were supposed to have amnesty by now. I'm sure you know that. It was supposed to be done. There wasn't going to be any Republican opposition to it. There was going to be massive new ground gained by the Democrats on gun control.

We were going to move forward on climate change with tax increases, a carbon tax or whatever because of Hurricane Sandy and the devastation in the Northeast, and take your pick. There was no stopping Obama's agenda. He won big; Republicans were slinking away. Obamacare, there it was, was going to be implemented. The Republicans, it turns out, had simply been uttering words during the campaign when they said that their objective was to defeat it, defund it, keep it from being implemented.

When the time came, they didn't oppose it. But a couple people did. And because of that, Obamacare is still not fully implemented, fully funded. It isn't a done deal. Contrary to what people think, Obama is really not having the cakewalk that everybody thought he was going to have. There are giant obstacles in his way, and there ought to be rallies of massive support for the people accomplishing this. People in their own party ought to be, but they're not.

The long knives are out for Cruz and Lee and anybody who decides to join them. Senior Mr. Bedford here at the Daily Caller says, "Senior Republicans are taking their cues from a couple of freshman conservatives. After years of void, Republicans have leadership in DC," and they do, and the Tea Party is as strong as it's ever been, and it's as active as it's ever been, and this is just not the conventional wisdom. This is not what was supposed to happen.

So the Washington establishment, the power structure, the elites in the media and in the two parties have gathered together every day to present a narrative or template that it's the Tea Party that's hanging by a thread, about to be embarrassed and debunked and gone and taken down and not to exist ever anymore. They're embarrassing everybody. But the fact of the matter is, for now and at this moment, the Obama agenda has had the brakes applied to it because there are people fighting back.

Folks, I'm going to tell you: We could have won this, and we may still be able to.

If the Senate Republicans had not caved, as they did last week, we could have held on, and we may still be able to. It's a dicey call. But the long knives are still out for everybody who was opposed to the establishment way of doing things in Washington. Really, you throw all this together -- the food stamp problem in and the IFM babe claiming the end of the world this week because of the shutdown and the debt limit, now Obama demanding to be rid of the sequester -- and the pressure is enormous on people fighting back on this, and they're still hanging tough.

If you think the ObamaCare exchanges and premiums were bad …

Hot Air ^ | October 14, 2013 | Ed Morrissey

… then Barack Obama’s hometown newspaper has news for you. The initial shock of the premium increases and the incompetent use of $94 million [see update] to create the world’s biggest 404 exchange are just the starting shocks of ObamaCare. Wait until people have to actually start using their new insurance, and perhaps the biggest surprise of all will be waiting:
Adam Weldzius, a nurse practitioner, considers himself better informed than most when it comes to the inner workings of health insurance. But even he wasn’t prepared for the pocketbook hit he’ll face next year under President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul.
If the 33-year-old single father wants the same level of coverage next year as what he has now with the same insurer and the same network of doctors and hospitals, his monthly premium of $233 will more than double. If he wants to keep his monthly payments in check, the Carpentersville resident is looking at an annual deductible for himself and his 7-year-old daughter of $12,700, a more than threefold increase from $3,500 today.
“I believe everybody should be able to have health insurance, but at the same time, I’m being penalized. And for what?” said Weldzius, who is not offered insurance through his employer. “For someone who’s always had insurance, who’s always taken care of myself, now I have to change my plan?”
That’s right — not only have premiums doubled in the individual markets, the coverage has gotten worse in a very concrete way. The new system has now opened a wide chasm between the employer and individual markets on actual cost coverage, too:
To promote the Oct. 1 debut of the exchanges, the online marketplaces where consumers can shop and buy insurance, Obama administration and Illinois officials touted the lower-than-expected monthly premiums that would make insurance more affordable for millions of Americans. But a Tribune analysis shows that 21 of the 22 lowest-priced plans offered on the Illinois health insurance exchange for Cook County have annual deductibles of more than $4,000 for an individual and $8,000 for family coverage.
Those deductibles, which represent the out-of-pocket money consumers must spend on health care before most insurance benefits kick in, are higher than what many consumers expected or may be able to stomach, benefit experts said.
By comparison, people who buy health insurance through their employer have an average individual deductible of just more than $1,100, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Bear in mind that Democrats claimed that the ObamaCare exchanges would make insurers treat individuals better in relation to group insurance plans. Instead, they’ve made the markets for individuals even worse than before, thanks to the deluge of costly mandates imposed on insurers, who must pass the cost of risk pools to the consumers.
The higher deductibles are the result of attempting to tamp down the premium hikes, but this raises a big question about the structure of the reform itself. If consumers end up with $4000 deductibles, how are these costs different than the alternate reform model of hospitalization insurance, health-savings accounts (HSAs), and emphasis on the cash/retail system for routine medical care? What we’ve ended up with is the same deductible costs — no one will use $4000 in routine medical care a year — without the cash-market reforms that would drive costs downward through price-signal clarity and competition, while incentivizing providers to get back into routine medical care by wiping out third-party payer red tape and costs.
Plus, we’ve now made it a crime for consumers to refuse health insurance, although many will make that choice anyway:
Millions of Americans may be wrestling with computer glitches to try to sign up for Obamacare — but many people eligible just won’t bother and will pay a price for it.
Some will flout the mandate to buy coverage on ideological grounds, a health insurance version of civil disobedience.
Some will opt for the penalty because it’s cheaper than paying for insurance, even with subsidies — as long as they don’t get sick and have to pay their own medical bills.
And some are so confused about the president’s health care law that they may not even realize they have to pay a penalty — or a tax, as the Supreme Court called it — until they get slapped with the fine when they file their 2014 tax returns. And sign-up rates may be affected, too, if the technical problems on the exchange websites persist.
If you have to pay the first $4000 out of your own pocket on insurance premiums that have doubled, why bother at all?
Update: The Blaze debunked the $634 million price tag — but at $94 million, it’s still a hugely expensive virtual brick. Thanks to Dustin Siggins for pointing this out.

Restaurant owner in Arkansas posts racially-charged sign ^ | Oct 12, 2013 

Restaurant owner posts racially-charged sign
Sign quickly changed after several complaints
UPDATED 7:44 PM CDT Oct 12, 2013
ROGERS, Ark. —A sign with a political message at a restaurant in Rogers had some community members up in arms.
The sign at Smokin’ Joe’s Ribhouse has been changed. It says “Why cook? Get some carry out.”

But that was not the message on the sign Friday night.

A viewer supplied 40/29 News with a photo of the sign before it was changed. It said "Obamacare America's Punishment for Slavery Years."

“I apologize for the sign. It’s offending people, as it did. I didn’t intend for it to be racist-oriented at all,” said restaurant owner Johnny Howard.

Howard said the sign was up for 45 minutes before he took it down after getting several complaints from the public.

He said the sign was taken out of context and that his frustration is with the Affordable Care Act, not with President Barack Obama.

“It’s the policy and I made the mistake of wording it in the wrong fashion. The policy. It’s not the person it’s the policy,” Howard said.

“To me this health care plan is a job killer. I myself will have to eliminate at least one location if all the policies that were written originally go through,” he said.

Will he put up another controversial sign sometime? “Well, no. I think I’ve learned my lesson.”

How Cruz, Lee and Paul shut down Obama’s agenda!

Daily Caller ^ | October 14, 2013 | Christopher Bedford

After Republicans drifted for years without a pilot, Sens. Ted Cruz and Mike Lee have taken the helm of the GOP, steering their party and its grassroots into a much-needed, head-on battle with the Democrats.
On the campaign trail on the way to his win in November 2012, President Barack Obama promised to finish the work he’d gone to Washington to do: “fundamentally transforming the United States.” Things look tough for the right in Washington today, but the reality is these three conservative Republicans, aided by friends in the Senate and the House, have dragged the president’s ambitious agenda to a complete halt, throwing both him and Democrat Sen. Harry Reid on their heels and adding policy paralysis to the president’s long list of post-election woes.
While Republican leadership in the House was loud when scandals from Benghazi to the IRS unfolded, over the last year conventional wisdom in Washington has held that sequester would never happen; amnesty for illegal immigrants was a done deal; no sane Republican would stand against an assault-weapons ban after Sandy Hook; the GOP would bless a charge into Syria; and, well, fill in the blank: student loans? Climate change? The tea party was over and Washington, D.C. was Obama’s oyster.
But then a strange thing happened. As one by one, impossible victories were won, observers saw the policy agenda of the president — a man who won a resounding victory just months ago — stagnate and stall: He hasn’t won a single victory since his re-election.
It’s almost surreal. Sequester is tentatively in place; amnesty is derailed; gun control is on the run; American forces are not involved in Syria’s civil war.
Senior Republicans are taking their cues from a couple of freshman conservatives.
After years of void, Republicans have leadership in D.C.
Abd after decades of void, conservatives do, too.
The new breed of conservatives won victories by shifting public opinion and navigating parliamentary procedure. Today, Cruz and Lee’s fight to defund Obamacare is deeply mired in parliamentary mumbo-jumbo, and public opinion is divided and negative across the board. In short, it is not ideal. And so long as the Democrats control the White House and the Senate, it never could be ideal. But one thing is undeniable: Their stand has lit a much-needed fire in D.C.
Will they defund Obamacare? No, they won’t. But they could — and they have — changed the narrative in Washington. And barring a disaster, that could change the narrative across the country on Nov. 4, 2014.
The folks who live in the world of Politico see electoral defeat hiding in the closet and Newt Gingrich’s ghost under the bed, but here’s an important question: What are Republicans so afraid of? Who is coming to get them?
The House of Representatives has turned Obama and Reid’s strategy on its head. When the president used the bully pulpit to call for Republicans to fund children with cancer, they did; when the president used the bully pulpit to call for Republicans to fund national parks, they did; when the president used the bully pulpit to call for Republicans to fund veterans, they did. All of the House’s stop-gap measures died in the Democrat’s Senate, along with scores of others.
Now, imagine the Democrat’s 2014 campaign ads: “One year ago, Republicans caved on the C.R.” “One year ago, Ted Cruz shut down the government.” Are those so deadly? Are Republican afraid that the Democrats won’t go easy, like they did last time? That time they called Republicans pro-rapists who wanted to push the elderly off cliffs and put African Americans “back in chains”?
Now imagine the GOP’s 2014 ads: “Sen. John Doe voted against funding our cancer clinics, against funding our parks, against funding our veterans — all to please Harry Reid.”
“As a result of this fight, we have a dozen House votes with Democrats voting against veterans, cancer research, the National Guard, parks and monuments, FEMA, FDA, and so on,” one senior defund Senate staffer told The Daily Caller. “In the Senate, we have a bunch of statements from Democrats saying that our attempt to protect veterans was ‘playing games’ and ‘unserious.’ These will all be tools in the next election, and would not have happened without the fight.”
What’s more, the effects of this shutdown simply aren’t felt by the vast majority of Americans and will be forgotten just as soon as cable news’ doomsday clocks are taken off the screen.
Republican naysayers should stop fretting, and pay attention to the conservative ascendance right in front of their eyes.
In 1964, conservatives crashed the Grand Old Party, wresting the nomination from the moderates and, admittedly, running the GOP into a terrible electoral defeat. But in 1964, Sen. Barry Goldwater caught the nation’s imagination, and lit a fire that never went out.
In 1976, afters years in the wilderness, conservatives fought again to wrest control from the moderates when Gov. Ronald Reagan primaried the sitting Republican president. Reagan lost, and his efforts contributed to President Gerald Ford’s defeat and President Jimmy Carter’s win, but he caught the nation’s imagination and stoked that fire that Goldwater had lit.
The “glorious disasters” that were 1964 and 1976, of course, laid the foundation for the Reagan Revolution.
That isn’t to say that Lee and Cruz don’t have their faults. Like in ’64 and ’76, not every aspect of their plans have gone as we, and they, would like. But for nearly two decades, conservatives languished without national leadership capable of closing the ranks. Today, Lee and Cruz have taken that mantle, stepping up the pressure, drawing bold lines and forcing hard votes.
In 1975 — 11 years after Goldwater’s defeat, one year after the end of Watergate, one year before his primary defeat and five years before his presidential victory — Reagan told an assembled crowd that the Republican Party must move aggressively forward, “raising a banner of no pale pastels, but bold colors which make it unmistakably clear where we stand on all of the issues troubling the people.”
Reagan was right then, and he is right now. No, we won’t win every battle. But here in front of us are the means, the talent and the courage to win the country. Don’t miss the boat.

Says You!




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