Tag Archives: rino

A Conservative Willing To Call Himself a RINO

Add the name of professor and blogger (foreignpolicy.com) Daniel W. Drezner to the list of prominent conservatives who have had enough with Republican’s destructive and self-serving brand of politics.

I’m not a Democrat, and I don’t think I’ve become more liberal over time.  That said, three things have affected my political loyalties over the past few years.  First, I’ve become more uncertain about various dimensions of GOP ideology over time.  It’s simply impossible for me to look at the aftermath of the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the 2008 financial crisis and not ponder the myriad ways in which my party has made some categorical errors in judgment.   So I’m a bigger fan of the politics of doubt during an era when doubt has been banished in political discourse.

Second, the GOP has undeniably shifted further to the right over the past few years, and while I’m sympathetic to some of these shifts, most of it looks like a mutated version of “cargo cult science” directed at either Ludwig Von Mises or the U.S. Constitution (which, of course, is sacred and inviolate, unless conservatives want to amend it).  Sorry, I’m not embracing outdated concepts like the gold standard or repealing the 16th Amendment.  Not happening.

Also, things that weren’t said are now being said.  Or, to be more precise, things that use to be said but ignored are now being taken seroiusly by the GOP’s leading lights.  Newt Gingrich endorses the notion that Obama has a “Kenyan, anti-colonial” worldview.  Mitt Romney claims Obama has been apologizing around the world and no longer believes in American exceptionalism.  …  There’s good, solid partisanship — a vital necessity in this country — and then there’s unadulterated horses**t.  Too much of the GOP’s rhetoric on Obama reads like the latter to me. 

So for those reasons, I really am a Republican in Name Only at this point.

Refreshing and certainly better late than never.  I’ve often wondered how thinking conservatives (yes, those in possession of a real brain with the ability to reason and discern truth from fiction) could remain loyal to a party that gave them George W. Bush and Sarah Palin.  I’m not referring to your run-of-the-mill teabagger or Fox News devotee.  Those people would vote for a barnyard pig if it had an ‘R’ tattooed to its butt and O’Reilly or Limbaugh praised the pig’s wonderful record of achievement.

I’m referring to the Frum/Sullivan type of staunch conservative who have not abdicated their right to think objectively.  How did they carry on through those eight painful years of neoconservative abuse and neglect?  I imagine it takes a certain amount of time and soul searching for one to come to grips with the realization that a loved one has gone mad.  I would think that for most intelligent and rational people, justifying political insanity becomes more difficult over time.

Again…better late than never.

I much enjoyed Andrew Sullivan’s response when asked by Howard Kurtz on how he reconciles his current harsh criticism of Republicans with his own conservatism.  “Because I’m still a conservative and they are not.”  Nice.

As I’ve noted before, if the Republican party is to ever survive its current crippling onslaught of madness on conservatism, it will be because of the efforts of strong minded conservatives like Drezner, Frum and Sullivan who are willing to call out the empty-headed emperor when he is caught wearing no clothes.  And these days, the emperor has made the conscious decision to burn his entire wardrobe.


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Would Reagan Be Booted Out of Today’s GOP?


The Hill.

President Ronald Reagan, a Republican icon, might not be welcome in today’s GOP, Rep. Bob Inglis (R-S.C.) suggested Tuesday.  […]

“I think this would be a tough time for Ronald Reagan and Jack Kemp,” Inglis added. “They were optimists that believe in America. Right now, unfortunately, conservatism is being presented with a voice of snarling rather than a face of smiling, and it really doesn’t fit America.

Firedoglake adds…

Well, Inglis is both right and wrong.

He’s wrong in that the “optimistic” smiley-faced Reagan spewed right-wing bile with the best of them: “welfare queens,” “Fascism was really the basis for the New Deal,” “Unemployment insurance is a pre-paid vacation for freeloaders,” — very snarly!

But here’s where Inglis is right.

Reagan passed one of the biggest tax increases in US history, tripled the national debt, signed SHAMNESTY! into law, wanted to abolish nuclear weapons — and cut and run from terra.

Now even one of those heresies, in the new DeMint/Palin/Teatard GOP, makes Ronnie the very definition of a RINO.


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Judd Gregg and Political Issues

Judd Gregg's Decision
Judd Gregg's Decision

Judd Gregg thought he could do it but at the end of the day, he realized he was unable to.

Gregg, Obama’s Republican pick to be his commerce secretary, faced the political issues as well as the political realities at hand and withdrew his name.  He felt that the differences in fiscal philosphy between himself and Obama would have been a conflict which he would be unable to resolve. “I should have focused sooner and more effectively on the implications of being in the Cabinet versus myself as an individual doing my job“, he said.

Gregg’s decision to withdraw becomes yet another problem for the Obama administration in their ongoing attempt to fill out the Cabinet.  Even more important is the further damage to Obama’s grand plan to forge a new bipartisanship era in Washington.  Gregg’s decision along with the solidarity Republicans have displayed in fighting the stimulus bill have greatly tarnished the president’s early attempt in finding common ground between the two parties.  While Gregg has taken full responsibility for his actions, Republicans will no doubt hope to turn it into a victory for their side.

If nothing else, Gregg will lose the RINO (Republicans In Name Only) tag which Reps had begun to throw his way when he first accepted Obama’s invitation to become commerce secretary.  As for President Obama, it might be time to put bipartisanship temporarily on the back burner and focus instead on reviving the economy with or without Republican support.

The clash between fiscal and political issues is real but it is imperative that the former take precedent at this time of economic crisis.