The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

The Non-Barking Dog Of Federalism

Posted on | October 24, 2011 | 45 Comments

by Smitty

Why I can’t help but admire large swaths of Ron Paul’s ideas:

Ron Paul told host David Gregory that he would abolish federal student loans. . .

All of those students must claim a state for residency. Why. The. [Ahem]. are states not taking care of their own citizens? Well, clearly the federal government can cause money to appear much more readily. Given the moral hazards an unintended consequences of decades of this, it is high time that We The People call ‘nonsense’ on this.

Many miles away something crawls to the surface of a dark Scottish lake. . .

Mitt Romney defended his conservative bona fides today, insinuating that some mistook his lack of “outlandish … rhetoric” for a lack of conservative beliefs.

“I don’t know on which issue I’m not conservative,” he told Sean Hannity in a radio interview. Romney cited what he had done as governor of Massachusetts — balancing the state budget annually, increasing school accountability and education choice, and increasing the state’s rainy day fund — as proof he was conservative. “I think my record is as conservative as you’ll find,” he said. Alluding to the health-care program he signed into law, Romney noted that Newt Gingrich had conceded during the last debate that he had supported an individual mandate at one point.

And he pointed out that he had been elected in a very Democratic state: “I think people recognize that when you’re elected in a dark-blue state like Massachusetts … a conservative like me is playing an away game,” Romney remarked, noting also his efforts on abortion and traditional marriage.

Romney did identify one way in which he differs from some of his GOP rivals: “I may not be as incendiary or outlandish in rhetoric.”

Shag your rhetoric, mister: it’s your results that have people wondering if you’re packing the gear, or Yet. Another. Ruling. Class. Knob.

Instead of a 59 point plan to vulcanize a dead cat so that it bounces more, just tell us what federal agencies you plan to snuff. Because really, if you’re not whacking some bureaucracy with a Big Fancy Hammer, then you’re just shining us on.


45 Responses to “The Non-Barking Dog Of Federalism”

  1. Joe
    October 24th, 2011 @ 9:11 pm

    I wish I could playFrankenstein with these candidates.  I could make a hell of a candidate if I could do so.  When it comes to limiting government Ron Paul is awesome.  Then he completely loses it on foreign policy. 

  2. Joe
    October 24th, 2011 @ 9:14 pm

    And I get why people do not trust Mitt.  I really do.  But talk about a personal decision, leave the country in the hands of Team Obama (and my what big hands Michelle Obama has) or have to hold one’s nose and vote Romney if Herman Cain commits one gaffe too many. 

    I am not digging this. 

  3. Shawn Gillogly
    October 24th, 2011 @ 9:39 pm

    Romney talking about his “accomplishments” with Abortion and Traditional Marriage? When? Because he ran as a PRO-CHOICE governor, and one of his last executive orders helped open the door to gay marriage in Mass. Just two of many issues he has been both for and against whenever a poll tells him.

    As far as “playing an away game” when he governed a “dark blue state.” Well that might be why he didn’t even BOTHER to run for re-election. Right? Yeah, there’s that ‘competence’ line. He was such a good governor, they ran him out with pitchforks.

    Mr “I can win, really!” Stakes his whole identity on a single fluke win in a Republican landslide year. Yet he didn’t leave a stronger party when he left office, let alone a better state. “My State likes Romneycare!” he shouts. While the Wall Street Journal notes that costs are now ballooning because it never addressed the cost issues of health care…hmm, another facet it has in common with Obamacare.

    Give me 4 more years of gridlock and an energized conservative movement over 4 years of what Romney did to his home state.

  4. Anonymous
    October 24th, 2011 @ 9:46 pm

    As usual I find Romney’s argument unpersuasive.

    On the upside there’s this.

  5. Anonymous
    October 24th, 2011 @ 9:53 pm

    The balanced budget argument isn’t much of one for conservatism. All it means is that projected expenses balance projected revenues. It doesn’t at all mean that your administration was responsible in spending it in a conservative manner or even collecting taxes in a conservative manner.

    Balanced budget != Conservative

    Argument == Cannard

  6. AngelaTC
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:00 pm

    Loch. Scottish loch. 😉

  7. AngelaTC
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:03 pm

    No candidate is perfect, and besides, right now the biggest national security threat we face is the debt.   

  8. smitty
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:20 pm

    Sure, but I was quoting lyrics from Synchronicity II.

  9. Joe
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:50 pm

    I got it…but it took me a few minutes of trying to remember what song it was from. 

  10. ThePaganTemple
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:51 pm

    Actually the only area where he’s wrong on foreign policy is his failure to see Muslims for what they are and the moral equivalence he draws between them and the Israelis. If it wasn’t for that he’d actually be the best of the bunch on foreign policy as well.

  11. ThePaganTemple
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:53 pm

    That doesn’t mean its all right to ignore other problems, that has a tendency to come back and bite you on the ass.

  12. ThePaganTemple
    October 24th, 2011 @ 10:54 pm

    Mitt just wants to be President because he figures it will be good practice for him when he becomes the god of his own planet.

  13. Adjoran
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:03 am

    And 300 more federal judges appointed by Barack Obama for life terms?

    If it weren’t for liberal judges, the abortion debate would be in the states where it belongs, and a great deal of what is wrong with the country now would never have been forced on us.

  14. Adjoran
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:06 am

    Why does Ron Paul deserve credit for ideas which were being championed by conservatives back when he was still for open borders? 

  15. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:23 am

    You do know that if the GOP was a conservative party it would filibuster every one of those nominations.

  16. CalMark
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:31 am

    Let’s not get carried away by Ron Paul mania here.

    He’s been ranting against the Fed for many years.  The valid points of his anti-Fed message tend to get lost in his unhinged populism.

    So.  Paul becomes Chairman of  a Committee where he could really slam the Fed and…does nothing.   Well, not nothing.  He announces his retirement from the House.  Then runs for President.  Again.

    Fact:  Ron Paul is one of the biggest pork barrel feeders in the House. 
    Fact:  Ron Paul didn’t even try to deliver on his promises to turn the Fed inside out.
    Fact:  Ron Paul wants to re-establish “Fortress America.” (That’s putting it kindly.)
    Conclusion:  He doesn’t deliver on his good ideas, and champions many bad ones.  Sound familiar?  That means Ron Paul is Ruling Class.  Grade-A, First Class kook, but still very much a member of the Ruling Class.  Great P.R. manipulation and an obsessive following obscure his true Ruling Class colors.

  17. Joe
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:55 am

    Was that really necessary?

  18. Joe
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:56 am

    We have two issues:  National Security and the Debt.  They are two sides of the same coin. 

  19. The Wondering Jew
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:56 am

    Umm. . . Not quite CalMark.

    But good luck selling the “Ron Paul is Ruling Class” line on the comedy circuit. . . .

    Smitty, I am with you all the way on this one . . .

  20. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:57 am

    Have to disagree there.  Giving up logistical superiority is pretty much a total de-balling of the military.  We may as well be France.

  21. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 1:08 am

    Which is exactly why I want Cain to “Reaganize” this tax plan stuff, and draw attention to the other things he says he’s gonna fix.  He can’t camp on a tax plan and ride that to victory.

    Especially now that he’s stated he thinks abortion should be illegal.  If he’d stuck to the Regan technique of demonstrating a pro-life stance, with plans to stop federal funding of abortion and overturn Roe v Wade, he could avoid chasing off a lot of independents.  (I.E. those who are more libertarian-leaning or fiscal conservative-leaning, but still think–without thinking it all the way through–they want the government not to get involved in abortion.) He needed to be more artful there, and went for blunt force trauma.

    Regarding Angela’s point: Debt is a big problem, but in terms of National Security, it’s not as simple as “fixing the economy.”  To judge by the party of the uber wealthy (the worldwide “Social Democrat” progressives), who are paying to see all of these “occupy” invasions around the globe, we have to do something about the left’s iron grip on the structures of society.

    It’s not enough to simply produce some jobs and pay down some debt.

  22. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 1:11 am

    Like Newt, I think it’s good to have Ron Paul making statements that get into the media.  I don’t see myself ever accepting Ron Paul as someone I’d want in any capacity higher than a member of the House.  But when he’s right, he’s right.

    No Palin?  Cain.

  23. Adjoran
    October 25th, 2011 @ 3:37 am

    Sure, if we had 41 conservative Senators.  We don’t. 

    If I’d married Jessica Alba, I’d drink better wine.  So what?  We deal with the world as it is, because waiting for the world to be as it should is a waste of time and hope.

  24. Adjoran
    October 25th, 2011 @ 3:44 am

    Um, he’s definitely right about the pork spending – Paul has been among the top three GOP porkers/earmarkers for many years.  His method is to get his spending inserted at the committee level and then, when the Omnibus Budget bill (back when they had those) was sure to pass overwhelmingly, he votes “NO!” and brags about being against spending.

    And Paul’s screaming about the Fed was mostly bluster, too.  The only “unaudited” handling of funds was due to the TARP and Dodd-Frank laws and the purchasing of bonds under “QE” – because the regional banks were already audited regularly, and the Board had nothing to audit until they began the interventions.  And Dodd-Frank did realize that shortcoming and mandated an audit.  So there was mostly hot air from Paul, he didn’t do much.

  25. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 7:43 am

    Huh? Oh, I get it, you thought I meant that as a joke, right?

  26. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 7:47 am

    We don’t have to give up logistical superiority. We just need to trim down our presence. We have far more based than we need, and have had for a long time. I’m fine with keeping a presence, but we can do that and be tactically smart about it. Besides, we just can’t afford to keep it up at the rate we once did.

  27. Bob Belvedere
    October 25th, 2011 @ 8:43 am

    -Regarding Mandate Mitt’s boast about balancing the Mass. budget: it is required.  The way the Legislature gets around it is by cutting every department [or most], passing the thing with much fanfare, and then a few months down the road passing a Supplemental Budget in the dead of night that restores all the funding that was ‘cut’.

    When he was Governor both the Senate President and House Speaker used to take his submitted budget and put it on a table in the corner of a room to collect dust and have a good laugh.  They did what they wanted because (1) the Governor in Mass. has very little actual power and (2) his budgets were considered unrealistic and naive.  Couple these facts with the well-founded belief that he was a wimp and you had a situation where the Legislature acted as if he didn’t exist.

    -As for the rainy day fund: any fiscal responsibility shown with funding that was due to the fiscally conservative Democratic Speaker Tom ‘Felon’ Finneran.

    -As for the ‘gay marriage’ issue: he only put up a token fight because, being the technocrat he is, it wasn’t an issue worth fighting for [such people just don’t get excited by such issues].  While, as I stated, the Mass. Governor doesn’t have much power, the successful ones know that they have the bully pulpit available [see: William Weld (the early years when he still cared), Ed King, and John Volpe] and they use it.  

    -Mitt should really not be touting his ‘achievements’ as Governor too loudly because it might prompt some folks to look deeply into them.

  28. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 8:50 am

    Anytime somebody allows themselves to be dragged into an abortion discussion, the absolute less said the better, because that’s a discussion no conservative can win. If your ten year old daughter has just gone through puberty and she’s raped by twenty scum bags and gets pregnant, and medical tests prove she’ll die in agony if she gives birth to what turns out will be a hideously deformed monster without a brain, there’s some fucking nuts that will insist she has to go through with the birth. On the other hand if you don’t allow for all kinds of weasel word exceptions to where it gets to the point temporary depression or a few bad headaches is considered sufficient reason for an abortion, you lose the independents and moderates. The only way to deal with it is tell the truth about where you stand on the issue and let the chips fall where they may. Naturally there’s always going to be some group that won’t vote for you but trying to weasel your way through it will just make it exponentially worse. And there’s not much more weaselly than Cain’s response to Piers Morgan. It’s got me in the mood to start watching SNL again.

  29. AngelaTC
    October 25th, 2011 @ 9:22 am

    We have to agree to disagree.  Just because he wants to handle problems with diplomacy doesn’t mean he’s ignoring them.   My kids have never lived in a world where we weren’t at war. To me, that means there is something very wrong with our foreign policy. 

    To start with, we can’t afford it.

  30. AngelaTC
    October 25th, 2011 @ 9:27 am

    Last time I checked, two of the liberal judges sitting on the court were appointed by the centerist Republicans we settled for. 

  31. AngelaTC
    October 25th, 2011 @ 9:31 am

    Somewhere in the depths of my basement, I suspect I still have the original lyrics sheet with the vinyl.  I thought it said loch, but I’m old. 🙂

    ETA: I’m right, which hardly ever happens

  32. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 10:49 am

    That comes with the territory of being top dog. We’re the most powerful, wealthiest planet on the globe, with more fertile land and vital natural resources of any other single planet on the globe, by far. That makes us a target by definition. People want what we’ve got. The only way we can have lasting piece in a world filled with these scumbags is to have not just a strong national defense, but an overpowering one. Otherwise, we would be obliged to completely withdraw inside our own borders and engage in no trade, or very limited trade at best with none but a very few, and unfortunately that is just an unsustainable position.

    We can be a lot more strategic with how we position ourselves, particularly our bases, around the globe and save shitloads of money, and we can be more efficient with how we approach military spending in general. Also, there’s no telling how many billions we can save by reforming VA, especially VA hospitals, which are a test case for bureaucratic red tape and waste.

    But we can’t just withdraw totally from the world and think all our foreign based problems are going to just magically vanish and people all over the world are just going to suddenly love America. That’s just not reality.

  33. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:02 pm

    As Angela points out below electing a squishy republican president doesn’t preclude the nomination and confirmation of liberal judges and justices. The lack of filibustering of unacceptable nominees hasn’t been from a lack of conservatism but from their sense of tradition and decorum the notion that they have some sort of perverse obligation to be “reasonable” that just because the SDs do it to us doesn’t mean we should to it to them. In short not filibustering commie judicial nominees is caused by some sort of bizarre phobia or a naive longing for some mythical bygone era when “gentlemen from both the Republican and the despicable Bolshevik sides of the isle” could get together for the good of the country. Only in fairy tales.

    One would hope that if you were married to Jessica Alba you be too busy to talk to us.

  34. Daily Pundit » Memory Problems
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:10 pm

    […] The Non-Barking Dog Of Federalism : The Other McCain Romney did identify one way in which he differs from some of his GOP rivals: “I may not be as incendiary or outlandish in rhetoric.” […]

  35. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 12:14 pm

    I don’t recall hearing of any debates in  congress about funding the IMF.
    I assume (perhaps incorrectly) that if those funds were dispersed by the Treasury congress would have to appropriate those monies. Does the fed supply those funds? Given the IMF’s participation in the European bailouts surely the dollar amount of our 27% has increased.

  36. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 4:23 pm

    Here’s your proof Joe-

    Mitt Romney’s Future Ten Commandments

  37. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 5:31 pm

    Well, not to beat a zombie Reagan, but there is a formula that works: “If you’re going to err, err on the side of life.”

    Reagan masterfully said that, every time he was asked about abortion. He could then claim that science hadn’t caught up with the issue, so we had to make sure where we erred in the science, it should be on the side of life. Thus, it made total sense when he did the thing (whatever it was, legislation or Executive Order, I forget) ending Federal funding of abortion.

    He attracted the staunch pro-lifers (except for the most hard-core), and also didn’t scare away the normal-minded independents.

    Cain just hasn’t formulated a response that’s totally consistent with the logic and philosophy of the Constitution. I think he really would benefit from calling Mark Levin and Larry Arnn for a one-day seminar on the Constitution, and why it works the way it works.

    Of course, so could all of the candidates. But Cain is winging it because he’s intelligent and knows the rules of the Constitution, if not the philosophical underpinnings. It makes him sound partially Conservative and partially Libertarian at the same time, which works in many cases, but not without problems in the “social” conservative areas.

  38. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 5:41 pm

    I don’t mind cuts in defense, just not the total a$$-r*pe Ron Paul proposes.

    Obama is losing Turkey, and that’s a very bad thing for our logistics. The base at Rammstein is vitally important. The Naval Air Station in Sicily is vital. The bases surrounding Iran are vital. The special teams we have operating in Africa are very important. The presence in the Philippenes is important to help keep FARC in check. It goes on and on.

    Europe needs to step up and either pay us for our efforts over the last 70-odd years, or take over their own defense. We should renegotiate–a lot.

    But the RP strategy is to collapse the forward presence and ditch alliances. Continuing our baseball analogy, that’s an RBI (Real Bad Idea).

  39. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 5:57 pm

    We don’t disagree here. I’ve actually been in favor of establishing a base on the Philippines. I didn’t think we had one.

  40. Anonymous
    October 25th, 2011 @ 6:19 pm

    Not a base, AFAIK, but a presence. We’re being cautious about it, from what I can tell.

  41. ThePaganTemple
    October 25th, 2011 @ 6:53 pm

    Wrong, the only one who is actually more centrist than anything else and who was appointed by a Republican is Kennedy, the so-called “swing vote”, and he was appointed by Reagan. All four of the liberal justices we have now were appointed by Clintoon and Obuma.

  42. AngelaTC
    October 26th, 2011 @ 1:52 pm

    Of course it’s not reality – nobody is making that assertion.    

  43. AngelaTC
    October 26th, 2011 @ 2:02 pm

    The Fed sings two different tunes – they claim that an audit would jeopardize their operations, then they claim that they audit themselves, so we don’t need to peek at their books. 

    They only audit themselves – hardly the same as a real audit, by say, the GAO. Congressional oversight of the Fed is about 12 hours per year – we spent more time on steroids in baseball.  I worked for a brokerage firm – our external auditors set up camp for 6 weeks at a time.The Dodd-Frank audit measures were the remnants of the Audit The Fed bill that Paul got through the house.  It showed that despite their promises that the money wasn’t going overseas, we were indeed bailing out international banks .  In the real world, when a hint of impropriety is found, the auditors dig deeper.  In Congress, they slam the books shut and fire up the partisan bickering.

  44. AngelaTC
    October 26th, 2011 @ 2:03 pm

    I want a Palin / Paul ticket.   Life insurance.

  45. AngelaTC
    October 26th, 2011 @ 2:13 pm

    Yes, you’re right!  Need to update my talking points.  But before that we had Souter,  and O’Conner,  also appointed by Reagan, who became the swing vote of her day.