Powerline on the “life happens, don’t judge anyone” Republicans

Wow. I and others have been pointing out how the Republicans have turned into a party of Oprah-esque personalism, non-judgmentalism, and other leftish attitudes. Our view has been a minority view, to say the least. But so radical and unsettling has the Republican transformation been that now even a conventional Republican, Paul of Powerline, is noticing it. He writes:

The “Life Happens” Republicans

Since watching the Democratic Convention in 1960, I’ve dreamed of attending a national convention, and for years now that dream has focused on the Republican one. Now, I’ve finally made it to a Republican convention. At least I think I have.

The doubt arises from some of the things I heard at the convention hall yesterday. For example, I always thought Republicans tended to disapprove of “affirmative action” selections. Yet nearly everyone here remains ecstatic about the selection of a vice presidential nominee who, given her credentials, would not (in my opinion) have rated ten minutes of consideration but for her gender. [LA comments: While I agree with the general drift of the article, I obviously don’t agree with this. I think McCain picked Palin because he liked her for a variety of reasons, not because he wanted a woman on the ticket, and I think that she has a lot going for her other than that she is a woman.]

Many people here say they are looking forward to Palin’s debate with Talkin’ Joe Biden. They say that expectations will be low and there’s a good chance that Biden will come off as a bully. There was a time when Republicans would have been less delighted to be the party of low expectations, relying on a sympathy backlash.

Some Republicans were also talking about Bristol Palin’s pregnancy as though it were a potential political plus. “Doubling down” on the affirmation of life was one phrase that was tossed around. Some thought (or pretended to) that the pregnancy would enhance the ticket’s popularity with the large number of Americans who have become pregnant as unwed teenagers or who have familiy members who have. And once again there was mention of a sympathy backlash.

The catch-phrase of the day seemed to be “life happens.” And indeed it does. But Republicans used to believe that the choices we make usually go a long way towards shaping the manner in which life happens, and that therefore indifference is not a fully appropriate response to bad choices.

The party has changed. It has become either less or more mature.

To comment on this post, go here.

[end of Powerline entry.]

The comments may be worth reading.

If I said it once, I said a hundred times, that if McCain was nominated, and especially if he became president, he would destroy the GOP as a conservative party. That is why I said so passionately last winter that McCain must be stopped and why I so urgently supported Romney as the only one who could stop him. But McCain won, and already he is changing the Republican party in ways that I couldn’t have imagined.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 02, 2008 11:47 PM | Send

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