Dedicated to the brave Israelis who are now in a war with Hamas and Iran.
May G-d be with you.
The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.
But before we get to that, we have some important biz to deal with… because it’s our pal Tom White of VA Right’s birthday!
Actually, the big day was yesterday, but we’re dealing in WoW time here, so I thought we’d celebrate it today. I don’t think I’m revealing anything top secret when I say that Tom’s just one of those people I instinctively liked right from the jump. As an illustrious member of our crew, aside from his stellar blogging talent (he was chosen a top political blogger by the AFP), I’ve never seen him fail to help out someone in the Council with a techie problem, or to give me an honest and useful answer whenever I’ve asked his advice… and isn’t that one definition of a good friend?
To go with this cake (carrot with chocolate pralines), in honor of the Old Dominion, I picked up a nice couple of bottles of Williamsburg Winery’s 2010 Vintage Reserve Chardonay to share around. As I’m told they like to say in VA: Virginia makes wine, Napa makes auto parts… or something like that.
Happy birthday bro… many, many more.
Okay, on to business.
There has been a great deal of handwringing and circular fire squading going on among Republicans and conservatives because of President Obama’s re-election.
Chicken Little has definitely been working overtime.
In this week’s winner, Joshuapundit’s Taking DC By Strategy – A Battle Plan, I had a few things to say about that mentality… and more importantly, what’s really needed to turn things around. And trust me, this sort of stuff is exactly what you’re not hearing from the GOP establishment or much of the consultant class. Here’s a slice:
Looking at some of the wailing and moaning coming from various Republican pundits and politicians, you would think the GOP’s days are over.
Well, maybe they should be if this is how they respond to what happened Tuesday.But as someone who is a conservative (that is, a classic liberal in the true sense of the word) rather than a doctrinaire party man, I’m far more interested in victory than appeasement.
That victory is eminently doable, but it will take some real soul searching and an answer to the age old questions: what are you prepared to do? How bad do you want it? Because it’s time to let the pretty, convenient lies die if you do want it.
I’ve already gone over a lot of the tactical reasons Mitt Romney lost, and some of the lessons learned from that I’ll expand on here.
The first thing we need to do is tune out the media static and realize that this was a far closer election than we’re being told.
Barack Obama is the only president in history to be re-elected with a smaller percentage of the popular vote than he won initially.. He won 53 percent to 46 percent in 2008 but his official numbers right now are 50.6 percent to 47.8 percent over Mitt Romney. The numbers might change slightly as the states finish their counts, but the president still won by a much smaller percentage than in 2008.As the National Review’s Jim Geraghty observed, Had Romney won just another 407,000 or so additional votes total in the battle ground states of Virginia, Colorado, Ohio, and Florida, he’d be president.
The bottom line, when all’s said and done is that about 3 million Republicans stayed home last Tuesday,mostly because they had no compelling reason to show up, and partly because, as we now know, the Romney campaign had an abysmal ground game. When you have only 6 campaign offices in a state like Ohio while your opponent has 130, you’re asking for a beating.
Those voters who were supposedly willing to crawl over broken glass to vote against Obama existed, but 3 million others simply took a pass. If even half of them had showed up, we’d have a different story to tell today.So the key to our little puzzle is not only figuring out why they didn’t show up, but why a relatively unpopular incumbent battling huge deficits, record food and energy costs and an 8% unemployment rate managed to prevail because enough of his people did. Again, not nearly as many as showed up in 2008,(which ought to tell you something about that so-called ‘decisive victory’) but enough to win.
In order to see how this works, it’s first necessary to realize a few things.
Republicans have always told themselves that this is a center right nation. It still is, but it’s moving in the opposite direction..Here’s why.
Since the 1970′s, when the unions took over, the left has gradually assumed almost total control of public education, and in K-12, not just the universities. Ever wonder why so many radicals found a home in academia, and why radicals like Bill Ayers became so interested and influential in public education, particularly of young children?
The results are obvious. Today, half the children produced out of this dysfunctional system may have trouble reading and writing, they may be ignorant of their culture and history, but boy are a lot of them proficient in repeating the leftist talking points they’ve been indoctrinated with for years!
As an added bonus, the teachers unions, like the other public employee unions are a major component of the Ponzi scheme that funds the Democratic Party at the taxpayer’s expense.
The good news is that this is very slowly starting to change in some parts of America simply because it’s financially unsustainable, but for now, especially in deep blue states like California and Massachusetts, that’s simply how it is.
So the first major requirement of winning the White House is a candidate capable of educating voters on conservative principles in terms they can easily understand, why they work, and why leftist statism merely produces equal misery.
The last presidential candidate the Republicans had whom could do this was Ronald Reagan, Ronaldus Maximus. He wasn’t known as the Great Communicator for nothing. Since Reagan, the only one who’s even come close is Sarah Palin, and at this point, considering the way she was shafted by her own campaign and the GOP establishment, she might very well have been better off turning John McCain down in 2008, serving out her term as governor and running for the top of the ticket in 2012 or 2016.
One of the reasons Sarah Palin was so effective at it was that she promised a change in the very climate of Washington… which is exactly how Ronald Reagan approached it. That’s something people turn out for.
Mitt Romney, for all his sincerity and obvious fitness for office never promised that kind of change in Washington and was surrounded by enough of the Republican establishment to ensure that it wasn’t going to happen.
To a lot of people, the promise of a better managed Washington bureaucracy wasn’t enough to get them to the polls.
And he certainly never explained conservative principles of government consistently and effectively and why they work. He tried, especially later in the campaign, but it was like listening to someone speak a second language. And by the time he started to get better at it, he’d already been defined by the Obama Campaign and their sycophants in the media.
It goes on from there…
In our non-Council category, the winner was Victor Davis Hanson with a dynamite look at Anatomies of Electoral Madness submitted by Joshuapundit. It’s an excellent look at what happened November 6th, written in VDH’s one of a kind style.
Here are this week’s full results. Rhymes With Right, Gay Patriot and Simply Jews were unable to vote this week, but none of them were subject to the 2/3 vote penalty:
- *First place with 3 votes! – Joshuapundit – Taking DC By Strategy – A Battle Plan
- Second place with 2 1/3 votes – The Razor – Invincible
- Third place with 1 2/3 votes – The Independent Sentinel – Benghazi Bombshell: Lies Upon Lies in an Extraordinary Cover Up
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – The Noisy Room – The Fog of Misdirection
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – Bookworm Room – Getting outside of the bubble: taking liberal arguments seriously
- Fourth place *t* with 1 vote – The Right Planet – When Liberals (Socialists) Offer Advice
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Mellow Jihadi – What Can You Do to Help Our Vietnam Veterans?
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – The Colossus of Rhodey – The results (and what now?)
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – VA Right! – The Republican’s “Obama Lite” Candidate Loses (AGAIN!)
- *First place with 3 votes! – Victor Davis Hanson – Anatomies of Electoral Madness submitted by Joshuapundit
- Second place with 2 1/3 votes – Caroline Glick – A time for courage, and action submitted by The Watcher
- Third place *t* with 1 2/3 votes – ZeroHedge – Why President Obama Was Reelected submitted by The Razor
- Fourth place *t* with 1 1/3 votes – Melanie Phillips – America goes into the darkness submitted by The Noisy Room
- Fourth place *t* with 1 1/3 vote Commentary/Abe Greenwald – Democrats Better Start Soul Searching submitted by Bookworm Room
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 votes – Wired – Is Anti-Islam Filmmaker a Political Prisoner? submitted by GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 vote – Blake Hounshell/Foreign Policy – Did Petraeus mistress reveal new Benghazi details? submitted by The Glittering Eye
- Sixth place *t* with 1/3 vote – Powerline – Where Do Republicans Go From Here? The Social Issues submitted by Gay Patriot
- Sixth place *t* with 1/3 vote – PJ Media – European Socialism is Collapsing, Is America Next? submitted by The Independent Sentinel
See you next week! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday AM for this week’s Watcher’s Forum, as the Council and their invited guests take apart one of the provocative issues of the day and weigh in… don’t you dare miss it. And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that!