Who gets the credit / the blame for the rise of McCain?
“In the absence of a compelling conservative,” writes Charles Krauthammer, “the Republican electorate turned to the apostate sheriff,” meaning McCain. But, he asks, who prepared the ground for the McCain ascendancy?
Not Feingold. Not Kennedy. Not even Giuliani. It was George W. Bush. Bush begat McCain.There are several problems with this. First, as Paul Nachman points out in a comment immediately following Krauthammer’s article, it is highly questionable that Bush is keeping us safe. Nachman quotes my idea that as long as there is a significant Muslim population in America, a population that is continually being augmented by the mass immigration of Muslims which Bush supports, the constant threat of Muslim terror will be with us, along with the accompanying security regime that has so altered our way of life. Also, as Carol Iannone indicates, the former Palestinian terrorist Walid Shoebat, who was part of a terror cell in America, has said in a speech on YouTube (see the last six minutes) that the jihadists’ plan in the West is to advance jihad by financial means, then by political means, and then, when the Muslim population in a country reaches 20 percent, by violence. Thus Bush, by encouraging the steady growth of the U.S. Muslim population through continual Muslim immigration, is doing the very opposite of improving U.S. national security. And of course McCain seeks open borders even more aggressively and emotionally than Bush.
A further problem with Krauthammer’s argument, that Bush has kept us safe and that McCain will follow in his footsteps, is that McCain won’t even keep us safe to the limited extent that Bush has done, since McCain wants to dismantle Bush’s principal measure to protect America (as distinct from protecting Iraq): telephone surveillance of possible terrorists in the United States. McCain also wants to bring al Qaeda prisoners from Guantanamo into the U.S., which will hang up our courts for years and lead to the release of many of the prisoners, not exactly improving our security.
Thus the notion that McCain is deeply committed to national security is a fantasy—a fantasy born of mainstream conservatives’ confusion between national defense and liberal globalism with a gun.
When Krauthammer, who is himself a leading ideologue of liberal globalism with a gun, observes that Bush prepared the way to McCain, he intends it as a compliment. But what he’s really saying is that Bush’s sellout of conservative principle in exchange for a specious and illusory safety, combined with the establishment conservatives’ eagerness to support this package, is what has paved the way to McCain. “Safety” uber alles, “National Security” (i.e., Global Democracy) uber alles—this is the Bush policy, which McCain is able to inherit and carry forward only because the establishment conservatives, Bush’s lapdogs, have spent the last seven years validating it instead of challenging it.
James P. writes:
Bush gets the “credit” for the rise of McCain in another way—by discrediting conservatism politically, Bush made it difficult (or impossible) for an authentic conservative candidate to win the nomination.LA replies:
”. In doing the latter, Bush has severely damaged the conservative brand, and as an immediate result, an authentic conservative cannot succeed him.”Larry G. writes:
“The fault … is not in our stars, but in ourselves.”LA replies:
You blame the party for having a big-tent philosophy, then you blame the individual voters who belong to the party by virtue of the big tent. But if the party admits non-conservatives, why criticize non-conservatives for not voting conservative? It seems to me that blaming the party’s overall rules/philosophy, and blaming individual voters, are mutually exclusive arguments.
Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 08, 2008 03:17 PM | Send