You can’t defeat evil with nothing

(Note: In this entry I am very tough on Romney. In a follow-up, I provide a more balanced evaluation.)

Here is the opening sentence of an article in the July 30 National Review on the same-sex marriage issue, written by Ryan T. Anderson of the Heritage Foundation:

The debate over whether to recognize same-sex relationships as marriages is among the most sensitive, difficult, and important in American public life.

Why “sensitive” and “difficult”? Do you think that the left says that the same-sex marriage issue is “sensitive” and “difficult”? No, they say that same-sex marriage is a fundamental human right, and that anyone who opposes it is a bigot. But our supposed side, the supposed conservative side, wrings its hands and says that the issue is “sensitive” and “difficult.”

Can you imagine if there was a movement to communize America and NR had an article about it stating:

The debate over whether to nationalize all industries and set up a soviet state is among the most sensitive, difficult, and important in American public life.

But that’s what NR and the Heritage Foundation (the true-blue conservative think tank!) say about same-sex marriage.

But wait—if there were a movement to socialize America, that is what NR would in effect say. I know this to be so, because it’s what NR is saying about Obamacare. The cover story of the same July 30 issue concerns John Roberts’s egregious decision approving the Affordable Care Act. The cut line from the article, appearing in the table of contents, is:

The Supreme Court’s ruling in NFIB v. Sebelius was disheartening. But despair is unwarranted. The negative consequences of the ruling for constitutional interpretation are actually quite limited, and there is much in it upon which to build.

So, according to the country’s most influential conservative magazine, same-sex marriage is a “sensitive” and “difficult” issue, and the most ruinous Supreme Court decision of modern times gives us “much upon which to build.”

And what is true of National Review and the Heritage Foundation is true of the conservative movement as a whole. There’s nothing there. Andrew McCarthy showed that the Republican establishment now supports the spread of Islamism—that the Republican party now openly and explicitly supports our mortal enemies—and there was virtually zero response to this cataclysmic news from the conservative movement. Either they didn’t care, or it was too terrible to take in.

Conservatism is dead. And since the conservative movement has represented the only organized and significant opposition to the left in America, it’s over. The right half of the country is a void, while the left half of the country sees the right half of the country as a bunch of threatening white male racists who must be dispatched. Between a blank on one side and roiling organized hatred on the other, who do you think is going to win?

And the same problem that affects conservatism and Republicanism as a whole applies specifically to Romney. In his announcement this morning of his selection of Paul Ryan as his VP candidate, Romney’s trademark plastered-on weak smile never left his face. I can’t stand looking at him. The man’s a blank. There’s nothing there. Obama, on the other hand, is tough and driven and wants to win re-election so as to complete his fundamental transformation of America. Between Obama, who passionately wants to destroy America, and Romney, who stands for nothing and is nothing, who do you think is going to win?

- end of initial entry -

JC in Houston writes:

There was an article on National Review Online yesterday by Daniel Foster who argued that 1) gay marriage was inevitable and 2) It really wasn’t that big a deal. He suggested that we should concentrate our efforts on trying to limit some of the worst effects that will radiate from legalizing gay marriage.

NR is dead, Conservatism Inc. is dead and soon America will be as well.

A reader writes:

One of your commenters mentioned a writer at National Review who said conservatives should focus on preventing negative fallout from gay marriage rather than preventing gay marriage itself. Rod Dreher of The American Conservative likes to make a similar argument, which never makes sense to me. Sure, churches likely will not be forced to perform marriages for homosexuals (in the actual church at least—those who own property where a gay couple wants a wedding have already had lawsuits brought against them), but that is literally the only thing that will withstand the new order. Adoption agencies will not be able to give even minor preferences to married couples; the concept of homosexuality will increasingly be taught to young students; any objections to gay public displays of affection will be blasted as homophobic; and we’ll most likely see more “sexually enlightened” teenagers claiming to be bisexual, or going through lesbian phases.

I have to say that in comparison to the left, which is of course fascinated by this stuff, the right has always seemed incredibly incurious. Of course I don’t mean they should have some bizarre fixation on the specifics of the subject, but there is plenty of information to call into question the thesis that all homosexuality is innate, or that having two mothers or two fathers is no big deal. Yet conservatives initially failed to appreciate the seriousness of the other side’s determination on this issue, and now that the momentum’s on the left’s side the right throws up its hands and says “Don’t worry about it.”

The reader continues:
I just kind of threw in that mention of public displays of affection. It’s not as key as the other things I mentioned, but I just remembered an incident where a homosexual couple was kissing at a ballgame, got complaints from parents, and then “the community” raised a big stink about it.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at August 11, 2012 01:57 PM | Send

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