An open letter to conservatives (H/T – TPM & AG)

This about sums it up;

Dear Conservative Americans,

The years have not been kind to you. I grew up in a profoundly Republican home, so I can remember when you wore a very different face than the one we see now.  You’ve lost me and you’ve lost most of America.  Because I believe having responsible choices is important to democracy, I’d like to give you some advice and an invitation.

First, the invitation:  Come back to us.

Now the advice.  You’re going to have to come up with a platform that isn’t built on a foundation of cowardice: fear of people with colors, religions, cultures and sex lives that differ from your own; fear of reform in banking, health care, energy; fantasy fears of America being transformed into an Islamic nation, into social/commun/fasc-ism, into a disarmed populace put in internment camps; and more.  But you have work to do even before you take on that task.

READ MORE HERE.



24 comments ↓

#1 Ghost of Dude on 03.29.10 at 8:18 am

Given the source of much of this lunacy, if they just have Michelle Bachmann committed to a mental institution they’ll be halfway there. So at least there’s a good start.

The rest will be more difficult. Personally, i’d vote for the republicans if they were able to be a truly fiscally conservative party and just ditch the right-wing social agenda.

#2 Sy on 03.29.10 at 8:34 am

Dear Liberals,

You and I both know the the most extreme members of your party now occupy the leadership. That’s unprecedented, the reverse would’ve been something like Barry Goldwater in the White House, with Newt Gingrich as speaker and Jesse Helms as Majority Leader. Imagine that scenario for a second, especially if Goldwater claimed he was a moderate who would help unite the Country under some ambigious, buzz word slogan that was taken as gospel by 90% of the Media.

The current Democrat’s inherant desire to remake this country to conform with their worldview is what has conservatives, Libertarians, Republicans & many former “Reagan Democrats” upset. Especially when they’ve seen what unseemly lengths the Democrats will go to implement it.

You know this country won’t tolerate a lurch towards socialism, so your only hope now is to demonize those who oppose you. Of course the tired, worn out clubs of “racism” & “bigotry” are the first ones you reach for, along with a healthy dose of class warfare to keep the fire properly stoked. Sprinkle in the ever-popular “blame Bush” and any other shiny object to point to to distract from the real issues: The “Stimulus” hasn’t worked, yet you say we need more. Our deficits and debt have exploded much faster than any other time and under any other Admin., yet you say we must spend more to get us out of the hole. Our Foreign policy is in shambles, yet you say the incompetance that’s been on display is what the world wants to see.

Bottom line, Democrats own the State of the Nation today and they now want to blame Republicans for it. The collecvtive stupidity of the Country is what they are banking on to cement their power base for the next generation and I personally don’t think we are all dumb enough to fall for that again.

#3 James Milne on 03.29.10 at 8:45 am

I would use something more like an open letter to politicians. This is the Constitution, if it does not explicitly grant you the power to do it, you can’t as any powers not delegated to the federal branch must go to the states. Life and Liberty, our only guarantee. And you couldn’t even manage that.

#4 hosenpheffer on 03.29.10 at 10:17 am

“Optimism is a political act. Those who benefit from the status quo are perfectly happy for us to think nothing is going to get any better. In fact, these days, cynicism is obedience.”

#5 Ghost of Dude on 03.29.10 at 10:39 am

Sy, even you have to agree that the GOP really, really needs to ditch the moronic social agenda if they want to win the moderates for good.

Shove Bachmann and Palin out of the way and start really talking about peoples’ pocket books – honestly and without hyperbole or “OMG SOCIALISM!!!” scare tactics – and people will come over to the republican side again.

Unfortunately, the wingnuts seem to be running the party even if they aren’t all the ones in charge.

#6 Helga on 03.29.10 at 11:53 am

Sy would have nothing to write if he didn’t cut and paste the repug talking points.

#7 Sy on 03.29.10 at 1:15 pm

Dude, all due respect….but look at the last election. If the “Kook fringe” actually ran the GOP, McCain would’ve never made it past South Carolina. The only time they got involved was after Palin’s nomination and even McCain himself bent over backwards to try to marginalize them. Where did that get him? Obama never criticizes the Extremists in his own party, he promotes them to the cabinet as a czar or the bench.

Bottom line, people are pist and it has very little to do with Social issues. Palin was dead on correct about her POLICY criticisms and that is why she needed to not just be beaten, but destroyed. The Admin and the Dems want to keep portraying ANY opposition to them as frothing lunatics. It’s not governing, it’s campaign mode and it’s all they know.

#8 Sy on 03.29.10 at 1:27 pm

Hos makes a good point on cycnicism.

Kinda like how genuine the OP is in his “offer” for Republicans to “come back to us”?

Come back to where, exactly? Ask the Blue Dogs like Steph how fun it is these days to be a moderate Democrat.

The closest thing to a “Moderate” in today’s Democratic party were guys like Evan Bayh and Joe Lieberman both of whom have been shown the door by Rahm and Howard Dean.

#9 Ghost of Dude on 03.29.10 at 1:46 pm

Dude, all due respect….but look at the last election. If the “Kook fringe” actually ran the GOP, McCain would’ve never made it past South Carolina.

You’re looking too far back. The kook fringe, in the form of teabaggers, has the party by the balls.
It’s not quite the same as the incompetent democratic leaders in congress, but it’s the same principle. Nutjobs wield the power.
I belive the teabaggers to be more dangerous than Pelosi and Reid, though.

Bottom line, people are pist and it has very little to do with Social issues.

Try telling that to pastor Doohickey and his flock. The reason the republican party won’t come back like you think it will in 2010 is because they’re still stuck on stupid. Gay marriage, abortion, and gun-control scaremongering are all they have right now that has mass-appeal.
The only thing the GOP has done well since Obama was elected is stonewall health care reform, neuter the bill, and then claim it’s a socialist plot. The final bill that was signed didn’t turn this country into a socialist state, and won’t change peoples’ insurance drastically unless they were uninsured/uninsurable before.

Palin was dead on correct about her POLICY criticisms and that is why she needed to not just be beaten, but destroyed.

So she was right about the death panels, then? Palin is a moron and needs to go away before the next election cycle heats up. She is the darling of the far-right fringe of the party.

If we did things right in this country, the republican party would be separate from the far right. There would be a Christian Nationalist party for her, Bachmann, and all the other nutjobs, and a republican party for capitalist, socially moderate folks who are for small government and less regulation. The dems would be split too, and there would be several more parties.

#10 l3wis on 03.29.10 at 5:21 pm

I think both parties f’ing suck. We need to get rid of all of them.

#11 Sy on 03.30.10 at 7:55 am

GoD:

“I belive the teabaggers to be more dangerous than Pelosi and Reid, though.”

How do you figure that one? The Tea party has no power, no elected representatives, and their de facto leader (Palin) has been demonized to the point where even rational folks like yourself have taken what’s been spun about her as gospel.

Here’s why you are wrong about the Left not being as dangerous:

“Leftism, though secular, must be understood as a religion (which is why I have begun capitalizing it). The Leftist value system’s hold on its adherents is as strong as the hold Christianity, Judaism, and Islam have on theirs. Nancy Pelosi’s belief in expanding the government’s role in American life, which inspired her passion for the health-care bill, is as strong as a pro-life Christian’s belief in the sanctity of the life of the unborn.”

http://article.nationalreview.com/429726/leftism-the-religion/dennis-prager

Obama, Pelosi & Reid want ot remake this Country into something it’s NEVER been before. The Conservatives want to go back and apply what has historically worked in the past; most notably smaller government and getting our spending under control.

#12 Costner on 03.30.10 at 9:31 am

Sy: Obama, Pelosi & Reid want ot remake this Country into something it’s NEVER been before.

That is true – which is why they call themselves “progressives” because they wish to change the country to their vision of what is better… i.e. progress.

We can obviously all disagree with what is progress and what is regression – but that is another debate.

Sy: The Conservatives want to go back and apply what has historically worked in the past; most notably smaller government and getting our spending under control.

Where are these conservatives you speak of? Because the self-proclaimed conservatives don’t seem to follow that gameplan these days. Even the poster boy Ronald Reagan relied upon huge amounts of deficit spending to get his agenda moving. Then Bush Jr. broke all previous records and spent his way into a recession along with expanding government to unprecedented levels.

Palin (since her name has been invoked) wasn’t any better… she was the governor of state which took more federal pork dollars than any single other state. She even went so far as to brag about turning down the “bridge to nowhere” but she failed to mention she still took the cash for other pet projects. When she was mayor she grew the size of city government and spend them into massive debt and left them to figure it out on their own.

Then look at our boy Thune. He brags about all of the earmarks he has brought home to South Dakota while complaining about government spending.

Is that really what conservatism is about? I sure don’t think so. A true conservative (which appear to be rare in Washington) would actually want the things you say… smaller government, spending which is under control (balanced budget), and perhaps even a plan to eliminate debt.

The last guy I knew that cut the size of government, balanced the budget, and developed a long term plan to pay off the debt was named Bill Clinton. I hardly think he is a conservative, but a plan like that only works if future administrations stick to it – and obviously that hasn’t happened at any point in history.

I’d love to see it, but I think it will take a true third party that can take the best of both parties and combine it into what appeals to most moderate Americans. I think that is sort of what the original post was about and what GoD was referring to – and I can’t say as I disagree. I’ve said for years I’d love to vote for a true conservative… but I just haven’t found one yet.

#13 Sy on 03.30.10 at 10:25 am

The point remains that none of what has been pitched as “progress” by the Liberals was part of what brought them to power.

Liberals can’t even be honest and call themselves “Liberal” becaue they know this isn’t a “Liberal” country. Like my original post, we have never had this level of extremism in control of both the WH and Congress before.

Clinton tried to run the table when he had a Democratic Congress as well, he didn’t move back to the center until he lost it. The only reason his Presidency was salvaged was when he realized he had no option but to work with a Republican Congress to get things like the Balanced Budget and Welfare Reform done.

Obama is hoping that as long as he has people like you, L3wis and Dude focused on the “kook fringe” he can keep on rolling.

#14 Randall on 03.30.10 at 10:31 am

“Obama, Pelosi & Reid want ot remake this Country into something it’s NEVER been before.”

Outside of a Republican talking point, what does that mean?

“The Conservatives want to go back and apply what has historically worked in the past; most notably smaller government and getting our spending under control.”

When has that “historically worked” please?

#15 Costner on 03.30.10 at 12:09 pm

Exactly – it “might” work, but I’ve yet to see any conservative even suggest such a thing outside of a political campaign.

Remember Bush was supposed to be a compasionate conservative, but he ended up spending far more than any liberal in modern history. Is that conservatism? No.

As far as having this ‘level of extremism’ in Washington, that is comical at best. Oh how quickly we forget the “you are either with us or against us mantra” and the Patriot Act and the lies that led to two wars and the accusations about WMDs all in the name of building momentum.

What has Obama done that is so extreme… oh yea, he added a few reforms to healthcare insurance (which does nothing to the actual cost of healthcare). Wow… simply shocking.

In it’s day, Social Security was far more extreme that healthcare reform. The same was true for Medicare. Obama has a long way to go to earn the “most extreme administration” label, but I’ll concede the point that anyone in power in the Democratic party is always considered “the most liberal” or “the most extreme”.

Good talking point, but thats about all conservatives have these days.

#16 Sy on 03.30.10 at 12:16 pm

Randall:

“Outside of a Republican talking point, what does that mean?”

Simple. We’ve never, ever borrowed and spent at this level unless you want to combine the Great Depression & World War 2. Even that comparision is somewhat flawed as nearly everyone felt fighting for our lives against Germany & Japan was a worthwhile investment.

You can call out Bush or Reagan but the fact remains that deficts as a percentage of GDP have been relativly managable under their Admins, even when the Congress went into drunken sailor mode. Here’s what I’m talking about:

“For the fiscal year ending September 2009, U.S. government spending, representing budget, off-budget and supplemental appropriations, was about $3.7 trillion dollars. At 26% of GDP, excluding the World War II years 1942-1945, that’s the highest share of government spending relative to GDP on record. For all the talk about the government not doing enough during this economic crisis, it’s instructive to note that this is 2.3 times the peak rate reached during the Great Depression and 3.3 times the average rate seen for the whole of the 1930s.”

http://trueslant.com/michaelpollaro/2010/01/15/u-s-government-on-its-way-to-bankruptcy/

and that’s prior to Obamacare & Cap & Tax, no less.

It’s also salient to recall that Obama blamed the bulk of our Economic situation during his campaign (and ever since) on Bush’s spending and his one true stand was his Senate Vote against the Iraq War. (although he did vote to fund it several times)

So sure, Obama can say he was against the War in principle, but he has never been against massive Govt. spending or piling up huge deficits and most people forget he had two full years to take that stand in the Senate.

As for the GWOT, the sum total of both Iraq and Afghanistan is CBO projected at 1.3 to 1.7 trillion dollars and that was from 2001 to 2015. Obama & the Dems have blown by that amount in 14 months, and the further they go the more people are lining up against it.

As for a conservative policy that worked, Kennedy, Reagan & Bush all cut tax rates and saw revenue to the Treasury (spurned by economic growth) increase. Or like Costner noted, how did our Economy due under Clinton (who I give huge credit to) when the conservative principle of a balanced Budget became a reality?

Look around the globe & go back as far as you want. Show me a Society that has ever adopted such a radical shift to the Left (without a coup d’tat) and has seen any level of increased standard of living?

#17 Sy on 03.30.10 at 12:28 pm

Cosnter:

“What has Obama done that is so extreme… oh yea, he added a few reforms to healthcare insurance (which does nothing to the actual cost of healthcare).”

Who’s puking back talking points now? The Republicans wanted to add a few reforms, and Obama told them to pound sand.

Gotta dismantle the whole thing to fix it and while we’re at it, let’s Nationalize Student Loans too. Obama himself has said he wants to go to single payer. Premiums are going up and services will be going down in both quanitity and quality. Medicare is broke so let’s put 30 million more in the system and dictate what they will be charged.

Don’t worry Costner, like Pelosi said, now that the bill & fixes are the Law we can all find out what’s in it.

BTW when did any Republican POTUS or Congress pass something that immediately led 28% of the States to file a Constitutional challenge?

You are smoking crack and/or lying if you think this steamy pile of shit we have in DC these days isn’t extreme Liberalism run amuck

#18 Sy on 03.30.10 at 12:44 pm

Costner:

“In it’s day, Social Security was far more extreme that healthcare reform.”

The fuck it was, seriously you are on crack, right?

In it’s day it was supposed to take care of the elderly poor, who in 1935 that was over 50% of people over 65. The Bill passed with huge bipartisan majoritys in both the House and Senate. They didn’t need to use reconciliation, outright bribery or backload the worst of it until a couple more election cycles like they just did with Healh Care.

http://www.socialsecurity.gov/history/tally.html

It wasn’t a tough vote because we had like 10 or 12 working people to fund a single person’s benefits. No one back then had any clue that less than 100 years later we’d have 2 workers for every retiree and out liability on the program would be approaching $50 trillion or 4.5 times GDP.

#19 Costner on 03.30.10 at 1:36 pm

Sy: BTW when did any Republican POTUS or Congress pass something that immediately led 28% of the States to file a Constitutional challenge?

Maybe not, but one President did something that was so unpopular at the time, that our nation split and declared Civil War.

BTW…how many of those states have Republican Governors again? I’m sure that is merely a coincidence.

Face it – Republicans whine about bipartisanship after they are no longer in control. That is how the game is played – we don’t have to like it, but you won’t convince me for a split second that Obama is any more extreme than many of our past Presidents including Dubya.

If we are to believe this is some extreme version of liberalism, it really makes you wonder why we didn’t just skip ahead directly to a single payer system. Surely if they are as liberal as you claim they should have been able to get the votes…. instead we got a watered down POS bill that likely will have no significant effect other than to rally the Tea Party crowd.

Funny how they didn’t seem to care about a $1 Trillion going to a worthless war… but damn if that Obama tries to reduce the debt over the next 10 years while granting over 30M Americans access to something they didn’t have before. Damn him and the silly CBO for being so biased.

#20 Plaintiff Guy on 03.30.10 at 3:04 pm

Health care reform was necessary. There’s now a control point to work from when it seemed an accelerating downward spiral. Government intervening will get control of insurance companies.

Democrats seek the right kinds of reform. They have become progressive.

Republicans are the new entertainment.

Munson can beat up some drunks. Palin can run for Rodeo Queen. Thank god they’re not sex obsessed and will eventually become extinct.

#21 Sy on 03.30.10 at 3:23 pm

Costner:

“Face it – Republicans whine about bipartisanship after they are no longer in control. That is how the game is played – we don’t have to like it, but you won’t convince me for a split second that Obama is any more extreme than many of our past Presidents including Dubya.”

I see you’ve fired up yet another rock. Slow down pal, don’t want your heart to explode.

Ever hear of No Child Left Behind? I think the bill was intended for special people just like you. Written by Ted Kennedy, signed into law by Bush despite misgivings from the Right for being too expensive and the Left for not going far enough. That was a hallmark of the 107th Congress, which was Republican controlled for the most part. Other major Bipartisan bills included Sarbanes Oxley & McCain Feingold.

Go look at the other items that passed the 108th, 109th & 110th Congress’ and Bush signed into Law. Sure it wasn’t the Liberal laundry list they piled into the POS Stimulus Bill, but the Dems got a lot done with Bush in office and they did nothing but bash him in return.

#22 Sy on 03.30.10 at 3:46 pm

Costner:

“Funny how they didn’t seem to care about a $1 Trillion going to a worthless war… but damn if that Obama tries to reduce the debt over the next 10 years while granting over 30M Americans access to something they didn’t have before. Damn him and the silly CBO for being so biased.”

Throw the fixes in and the soon to be implemented “Doc fix” (which weren’t calculated before the vote) and that same CBO says there’s no deficit reduction without massive tax increases. They killed the 28% subsidy to corporations to help pay the employees plans and you’re already seeing AT&T, Caterpiller, Deere, Verizon taking $100 or so million charges in the next quarter…all their products and services will become more costly. The goddamn IRS says they will need 16,000 more agents to enforce the new rules in Obamacare, this whole deal is a raw one and I don’t give a shit how much you want to water it down we are in a HUGE mess that we damn well better take the first step to correct in November.

As for that “worthless war” again unlike Health Care, that was actually a bipartisan effort, both at the onset and subsequent funding votes. Obama himself has said he’d have gone in too. Hell Biden just said that Iraq might be one of Obama’s biggest successes, so if that war is so worthless why is the current Admin. taking credit for it?

#23 Costner on 03.31.10 at 7:43 am

Ever hear of No Child Left Behind?

Yea…a POS bill that hasn’t done a thing and is continually cited as needing to be rewritten and/or scrapped. Sometimes bipartisanship isn’t exactly a good thing when it involves a crap piece of legislation. Same holds true for things like the Patriot Act during Bush’s time in office.

Other major Bipartisan bills included Sarbanes Oxley & McCain Feingold.

Parts of the McCain Feingold bill were challenged by one of the very leaders of the GOP Mitch McConnell. Seems it wasn’t as bipartisan as you would like to think. it passed 240 – 189 in the house and 60-40 in the Senate.

In the house you had only 12 no votes from Dems, but 176 from Reps. In the Senate of those 40 no votes how many were from Dems? A whopping 2 votes. Of the 60 yeas votes, 11 were from the GOP.

Yea… that is really showing a high level of bipartisanship. I guess when you have two sponsors (one from each party) that somehow means it has bipartisan support right?

Give me a break. If that is your idea of bipartisanship, you can find it in every single Congress throughout history.

#24 Costner on 03.31.10 at 7:52 am

As for that “worthless war” again unlike Health Care, that was actually a bipartisan effort, both at the onset and subsequent funding votes.

Again sometimes bipartisanship isn’t a good thing. If the Democrats knew then what they know now you can be certain they wouldn’t have voted for it. However you can’t really blame any of our members of Congress for voting to support the war resolution or for funding measures when they were fed a line of garbage that was later proven to be untrue. When politicians are told Iraq is seeking significant quantities of uranium and told there is evidence to support it… you can bet they are going to act.

My statement about it being a worthless war is simply my viewpoint… and I stand by it. We haven’t accomplished anything which suggests the sacrifices of thousands of American lives was worth it.

Hell Biden just said that Iraq might be one of Obama’s biggest successes, so if that war is so worthless why is the current Admin. taking credit for it?

Sy you’re under the misconception that I need to agree with everything Biden or Obama or the Democrats do… and unlike you I don’t just pick a team and root for them no matter what. I often do disagree with Obama just as I often disagreed with Bush.

I still beleive the war is a futile effort that has not brought any more stability to that region and has actually increased rates of terrorism worldwide. I fail to see what we have accomplished other than eliminating Saddam himself (which could have been done with a lone bomb without ever setting foot in country).

Thats just my opinion… I could care less if Biden agrees with me or not. Frankly I probably disagree with this admin just as often as the previous one. So be it.

Leave a Comment