Saturday, October 11, 2008

Another Conservative Thinker Endorses Obama

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Yesterday was shaping up to be another one of those Republicans-deserting-McCain days. For most thoughtful conservatives the cynical choice of a patently unqualified Sarah Palin was the straw that broke the camel's back. But for others it has been McCain's erratic and dishonorable behavior; it is now clear he would do anything to get into the White House, regardless of what damage he causes to America. Others just looked at his insane mortgage proposal or his catastrophic healthcare plan... and fled in horror.

Joining National Review colleague Chris Buckley, that right-wing publication's former editor and publisher, Wick Allison, wrote a scathing piece on the danger of electing McCain and why he's voting for Obama. Allison is now editor-in-chief of D Magazine. At the age of 16 he organized the Dallas County Youth for Goldwater and that's been his world ever since. "Today," he confesses, "it is so-called conservatives who are cemented to political programs when they clearly don’t work."
The Bush tax cuts—a solution for which there was no real problem and which he refused to end even when the nation went to war-- led to huge deficit spending and a $3 trillion growth in the federal debt. Facing this, John McCain pumps his “conservative” credentials by proposing even bigger tax cuts. Meanwhile, a movement that once fought for limited government has presided over the greatest growth of government in our history. That is not conservatism; it is profligacy using conservatism as a mask.

Today it is conservatives, not liberals, who talk with alarming bellicosity about making the world “safe for democracy.” It is John McCain who says America’s job is to “defeat evil,” a theological expansion of the nation’s mission that would make George Washington cough out his wooden teeth.

This kind of conservatism, which is not conservative at all, has produced financial mismanagement, the waste of human lives, the loss of moral authority, and the wreckage of our economy that McCain now threatens to make worse.

Barack Obama is not my ideal candidate for president. (In fact, I made the maximum donation to John McCain during the primaries, when there was still hope he might come to his senses.) But I now see that Obama is almost the ideal candidate for this moment in American history. I disagree with him on many issues. But those don’t matter as much as what Obama offers, which is a deeply conservative view of the world. Nobody can read Obama’s books (which, it is worth noting, he wrote himself) or listen to him speak without realizing that this is a thoughtful, pragmatic, and prudent man. It gives me comfort just to think that after eight years of George W. Bush we will have a president who has actually read the Federalist Papers.

Most important, Obama will be a realist. I doubt he will taunt Russia, as McCain has, at the very moment when our national interest requires it as an ally. The crucial distinction in my mind is that, unlike John McCain, I am convinced he will not impulsively take us into another war unless American national interests are directly threatened.

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9 Comments:

At 6:48 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Thank you.

 
At 7:38 PM, Blogger Erik said...

If only American dialectic, both left and right-wing, was consistently like this. God, this country would rule.

 
At 5:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You took words out of my mouth. As a life-long (so far), hard-core republican who lives in AZ, these are almost the exact reasons that I will vote for Obama.

 
At 7:34 AM, Blogger Rhode Island Rules said...

Wow! Now if this would convince more people on the right to think carefully about their choice and not just blindly vote party loyalty.

This country is out of control right now and we need leaders who will do what is best for all not for some fringe element of one issue voters.

We also need media to deliver thoughtful and thorough analysis and stop throwing out smears and taunts that do nothing but divide us. The pundits have to stop giving air time to all those who spout craziness, those who you would have avoided years ago as they stood ranting nonsense on the street corner.

 
At 3:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all, this man, Wick Allison, is correct about the sorry state of the Republican party. Only a few real conservatives remain wandering the halls of Congress. The rest of the party suffers from being pulled to the left for decades by the media and popular culture. George Bush has decided to take on some very tough issues without being able to tell the truth about what we are actually doing and why we are doing it. He never defends himself and poorly explains himself when called upon to do so.
However, to embrace Obama is not the answer. This man's perception of Obama as a thoughtful pragmatist is a frightening spectacle and to me shows how utterly empty Obama is. He is functioning as a mirror, somehow reflecting the desires and thoughts of way more people than I thought possible.

The device used here is the CHANGE mantra and Obama does not need to make these radical claims himself as these groups just ASSIGN values and positions as they all see fit depending on the changes they want. Just imagine what you want, and Obama fits the bill. He is a master of the wink and the nod, and therefore people do not believe him when he says things that are against what they believe. They think he is “just saying those things” to get elected and that once he is safely in office he will fullfill thier secret desires. Even his former church mates, whom he threw under a bus and denounced publically, will all be voting for him and they probably expect that a President Obama will carry out payback for all their greivances against the USA.

And now I see, to at least some conservatives, he is the new Ronald Reagan. If Obama wins and it is looking more and more like he will, there are either going to be legions of disappointed groups out there or Obama is a supernatural being who can change the perception of reality depending who he is talking to. There are simply no policies that will placate all sides of every issue, and Obama is building up huge expectations. I fear his strategy after the election will be the Third-World strategy (Chavez anyone?) of claiming that "enemies" are stopping him from saving the world and that more power will be needed in the executive branch. The end result may be that all the power that people believe that Bush/Cheney have usurped will be freely given under Obama.

People should ask themselves if they are projecting their own desires onto Obama or if there is actually a substantive rational, basis for their selection.

 
At 7:07 AM, Blogger karen said...

I really miss fiscal responsibility plank of the Republican platform. I don't think the federal gov should be involved in abortion, gay marriage, prayer in school, flag burning, or spreading democracy around the world. Those issues, the citizens can take of on our own locally.

I wish the real Republicans would take back their party from the religious right-wing-nuts who have highjacked it.

 
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