Posts Tagged ‘Bush43’

I May Have to Buy This Shirt

Saturday, February 18th, 2017

This one right here.

W Shark

And if there’s a Kickstarter to get that scene into Sharknado 5, I’m in…

LinkSwarm for October 30, 2015

Friday, October 30th, 2015

Right now Austin is enjoying our traditional “two weeks of flooding following three months of drought” fall. Enjoy a Friday LinkSwarm:

  • “In Iraq, Obama took a war that we had won at a considerable expense in lives and treasure, and threw it away for the callowest of political reasons. In Syria and Libya, he involved us in wars of choice without Congressional authorization, and proceeded to hand victories to the Islamists. Obama’s policy here has been a debacle of the first order, and the press wants to talk about Bush as a way of protecting him.”
  • Paul Ryan elected Speaker of the House. If Ryan decides to govern as an actual Republican, he could be a very effective Speaker…
  • The IRS has Stingray cell phone surveillance gear. Get ready for a whole new round of Tea Party audits…
  • Speaking of the IRS, the House of Representatives is justified in impeaching IRS chief John Koskinen.
  • At the most recent Republican Presidential debate, Sen. Marco Rubio said the H1-B visa program is badly in need of reform. One tiny problem: Sen. Rubio’s own H1-B bill doesn’t implement any of the reforms demanded by Presidential Candidate Rubio. “It does not require recruitment of American workers. It does not require employers to ‘pay more than you would pay someone else’…Rubio’s bill would provide Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and his comrades ‘a huge increase in the supply of lower-cost foreign guest workers so they can undercut and replace American workers.'” Indeed, Rubio’s bill “would triple the number of H1-B foreign workers admitted.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Get ready for steep ObamaCare price hikes for 2016.
  • Angela Merkel’s ruling coalition is starting to come apart thanks to the refugee crisis.
  • Venezuela is selling gold to cover bond payments. (Hat tip: Commonsense and Wonder.)
  • Al-Shabaab Islamic militant group in Somalia pledge loyalty to the Islamic State.
  • The Islamic State schools ban: “math, music, philosophy, history, French and geography as incompatible with Islam.”
  • Not news: Journalist in Sweden gets stoned. News: The wrong kind of stoned.
  • Teacher’s hate Common Core. The only people that seem to love it are Washington bureaucrats and Jeb Bush…
  • Speaking of Jeb, He has not succeeded this year, and there is no particular reason to believe he will…Jeb just isn’t very good at this.”
  • “Even beyond the fact that Bush has spent almost a year and ended up among the statistical noise despite all of his organizational and financial advantages, this all but proved that he’s simply not a good enough candidate to run in the general election.”
  • Jeb Bush’s campaign also hasn’t knocked on any doors in Iowa.
  • Ben Carson’s campaign is working with other Republican Presidential campaigns to extract their debates from the liberal clutches of the MSM.”
  • How to fix the Republican debates: “First, cancel the rest of the debates. Instead, announce that the RNC will host the debates and pick the panel of questioners. Allow any news organization that wishes to broadcast it.”
  • A look at the Russian BMD-2 infantry fighting vehicle.
  • John Wiley Price trail delayed again.
  • Reminder: Most acts at SXSW don’t get paid.
  • Feminism is “a War Against Human Nature aimed at using the coercive power of government to bring about an androgynous ‘equality’ that ignores the actual differences between men and women. Feminism is a totalitarian movement to destroy civilization as we know it — and feminists say so themselves.”
  • Salon’s pro-pedophile agenda:

  • How to stamp out Cultural Marxism in a single generation.
  • Flash is dying. Netcraft confirms it…
  • Texas Statewide Race Update for July 16, 2013

    Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

    Time permitting, I’m hoping to do regular updates on the 2014 statewide races in Texas the same way I updated the senate race. But with so many more offices and players, it’s going to take me some time to get up to speed.

  • Greg Abbott’s gubernatorial warchest has swollen to a formidable $23 million.
  • He also visited Longview, Wichita Falls, and Duncanville.
  • Todd Staples leads the money race for Lt. Governor, according to this fragment of the story that isn’t behind the Statesman paywall.

    Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples, with $3 million in the bank, has the largest campaign treasury of the four Republican candidates for lieutenant governor, according to the latest fundraising statements, which were due Monday.

    Thanks to a $650,000 personal loan to his campaign, Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, the latest entrant in the race, edged past Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in money in the bank — $2.1 million to $1.73 million — even though Dewhurst raised $1.2 million compared with about $100,000 for Patrick. The fourth candidate, Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, raised $417,000, bringing his treasury to $1.3 million. Patterson said he hopes to raise $3 million in the next six months to remain competitive, and Dewhurst has a personal fortune that he can tap

  • The Texas Tribune has more fundraising roundup news. Tidbits:
    • State Rep. Dan Branch hasn’t even declared his AG run, but already has $4 million on hand, including a $5,000 donation from George W. Bush.
    • Barry Smitherman has over $1 million cash on hand for his AG run.
    • State Sen. Ken Paxton (honestly, I was just guessing he would make an AG run) has more than $1.6 million cash on hand. He hasn’t declared yet.
    • George P. Bush reported $2 million raised and $2.6 million on hand for his Comptroller run.

    I’ll be digging into the financial reports for all the major candidates when I get a chance (don’t hold your breath this week).

  • Democratic abortion diva Wendy Davis raised just under a million dollars…for her state senate campaign. No word on a governor’s run.
  • Even in-the-tank liberal fossil Paul Burka says Davis has no chance to win the Texas Governor’s race.
  • A David L. Watts, Jr. is running for Land Commissioner. His platform so far seems to be that George P. Bush isn’t conservative enough.
  • LinkSwarm for April 26, 2013

    Friday, April 26th, 2013

    For a startling change of pace, this week the Friday LinkSwarm will be on…Friday!

  • So where are those violent mobs of Americans attacking Muslims the media keeps implying are common? Nowhere to be found.

    “Clearly, some observers fear ordinary Americans more than they do terrorists; they fret more over how dangerously unintelligent and hateful Yanks will respond to bombings than they do over the bombings themselves. But where is this Islamophobic mob? Where are these marauding Muslim-haters undergoing a post-Boston freakout? They are a figment of liberal observers’ imaginations.”

  • Finally catching up on work Andrew Breitbart and Lee Stranahan were doing three years ago, The New York Times finally discovered that there was massive fraud in the Pigford “black farmer settlement, namely hundred of millions of dollars going to people who had never farmed in their life for “discrimination” by the Department of Agriculture.
  • It takes some chutzpah to lobby against voter ID bills when you’ve already been convicted of voter fraud.
  • Walter Russell Mead on the Wreck of the Euro. “Meanwhile everything in Europe gets worse. As we’ve said before, with the exception of communism itself, the euro has been the biggest economic catastrophe to befall the continent (and the world) since the 1930s. Politicians in Europe thought they were living in a post-historical period in which mistakes didn’t really matter all that much. They were horribly wrong, and the wreck of the euro is blighting lives and embittering spirits on a truly staggering scale.” Quibble: $500,000 won’t just buy you “a pretty nice house;” in most of the country, it will buy you mansion.
  • Iowahawk’s new digs. (Though he’s also escaped from his captors at his old digs as well.)
  • Denmark rethinks welfare. “Denmark’s long-term outlook is troubling. The population is aging, and in many regions of the country people without jobs now outnumber those with them.”
  • Back-to-back record lows for Texas. How’s that global warming working out for ya?
  • Drink, Drive, Get Public Employee of the Year. (And yes, of course she’s a Democrat.)
  • “If Maureen Dowd’s evisceration manqué of President Obama’s gun control strategy in the New York Times is any indication, Ms. Dowd is in the wrong line of work. She doesn’t understand American politics. She doesn’t know how votes are gained and lost, she doesn’t know what presidents do or understand what powers they have, and above all she doesn’t understand how politicians think.” On the plus side, Dowd did say that Obama “still has not learned how to govern.”
  • Max Baucus to retire. “Mr. Baucus is the sixth Democrat since the start of the year to opt not to run for re-election in 2014, following Sens. Carl Levin of Michigan, Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, Tom Harkin of Iowa, Tim Johnson of South Dakota and Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey.”
  • Funny what 4+ years of Obama has done for Bush43’s image. “Among registered voters, his approval rating today is equal to President Obama’s, at 47 percent.”
  • “Kerry possesses neither principle nor expertise, and so the odds of him saying something both daft and morally bankrupt are always high.”
  • Shotgun beats baseball bat.
  • Feminist political correctness now trumps rights of the accused and due process of law on campus.
  • Infowars has a dating site. No, really.
  • George P. Bush Running for Land Commissioner

    Tuesday, March 12th, 2013

    George Prescott Bush filed the official paperwork Tuesday to run for Texas land commissioner next year.”

    That would be Jeb Bush’s son, Bush43’s nephew, and Bush41’s grandson, one of the “little brown ones.” The Bush name alone is probably enough to win him the office, but add to that the fact that the Bush family has one of the most powerful money machines in all politics and you have a prohibitive favorite. Jerry Patterson was probably right to think he’d have an easier time defeating a post-Senate-race-meltdown David Dewhurst for Lt. Governor.

    Deeper analysis of a continuing Bush dynasty, and of how Democrats and the press react to facing a Bush scion who happens to be Hispanic, will have to wait until (at least) tomorrow.

    Pelosi Thanks Bush

    Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

    To congratulate him for taking a leading role in hunting down Osama Bin laden.

    And the moon became as blood…

    The Case For (and Against) Intervention in Libya

    Monday, April 4th, 2011

    A few weeks ago, the United States (and Obama) could have delivered a knock-out punch to the heinous regime of Moammar Gadhafi. A clear-cut victory over a tottering tyrant was within our grasp, an outcome that would have benefited us, the western world in general, the Libyan people in specific, and put America on the right side of history when it actually mattered. Maybe we could have even helped pick the least tainted of Gadhafi’s generals to turn, or install the least odious of the rebels in a temporary government that might not immediately impose a hard-line Islamist state. Such are the limited goals possible under a realistic policy in the middle east.

    However, the Obama administration’s case of “the slows” and an insistence on playing “mother may I” with the UN has snatched defeat (or at least stalemate) from the jaws of victory. As Michael Totten put it, “I have a sinking feeling that what we’re seeing right now over the skies of Libya is too little, too late.” By waiting until momentum had shifted back to Gadhafi’s forces, Obama has altered the entire enterprise from one of achieving a quick and decisive victory to one of very possibly ensuring a long, expensive, and indecisive stalemate. People have been comparing it to Bush43’s decision to go into Iraq in 2003. However, to my mind it has the potential to work out more like Bush41 decision not to let Schwarzkopf take Baghdad during the first Gulf War: a decision that could result in a brutal dictator staying in power due to our weak-willed deference to both the status quo antebellum and undemocratic Arab allies, resulting in an ongoing stalemate and an open-ended commitment that will drain our military’s time, money and attention until someone else has to clean up the mess many years down the road.

    Liberal Democrat John B. Judis in The New Republic has similar thoughts:

    Obama did the absolutely worst thing—he called for Qaddafi’s ouster, but did not do anything about it, and discouraged others from doing so. It’s one thing for Costa Rica to call for the ouster of an African despot. It’s quite another thing for the United States, which is still the major outside power in the region, to do so. Obama’s call for Qaddafi’s ouster encouraged Libyan rebels to push ahead in the hope of American active support, only to face Qaddafi’s mercenary armies.

    Some politicians (like Newt Gingrich, who is as unimpressive a Presidential candidate as he was impressive his first two years as Speaker of the House)) just can’t make up their minds on the issue. (And here’s Ace calling him on it.)

    The case for using military intervention in Libya is considerably weaker than that Bush43 had when he went into Iraq, thanks to Saddam Hussein’s violation of numerous terms of the agreement Iraq signed upon ending the first Gulf War. While Libya is certainly an outlaw regime, it was not nearly the outlaw (or nearly the threat) Saddam Hussein’s Iraq was, especially after Gadhafi’s agreement to abandon his own WMD programs in the wake of the Gulf War. Still, to say the case is weaker is not to say there’s no case at all. Here then, are the pros and cons on each side of the issue:

    The Case For U.S. Military Intervention in Libya

    1. Moammar Gadhafi is a brutal tyrant who oppresses his own people. Few beyond Gadhafi’s most fanatical supporters in the U.S. (I’m looking at you, Louis Farrakhan) dispute this. For more details of just what Gadhafi has done to Libya, I give you Michael Totten’s account of his trip there.
    2. Gadhafi-trained terrorists were behind the Berlin disco bombing in 1986, killing three people (including two U.S. servicemen), injuring 230 others, and prompting President Reagan to launch an air strike in retaliation.
    3. Moammar Gadhafi is an active supporter of Islamic terrorism against Western civilians. While Gadhafi’s support of terrorism waned somewhat following his agreement to give up his nuclear program, they never ended entirely. Libyan trained terrorists have been active throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
    4. Many of our allies were in favor of this intervention. There is much to be said for giving a hand to our military allies when asked. Given that supporting the liberation in Iraq probably (eventually) cost Tony Blair his job as PM, it’s only fair that we give a respectful hearing to David Cameron when he comes asking for help. (Also, let’s be fair and give credit where credit is due: Obama didn’t forget Poland.)
    5. The far left is against it. Among those outright opposed or expressing reservations are Dennis Kucinich, Maxine Walters and Shelia Jackson Lee, Jesse Jackson, and the left’s favorite useful idiot, Cindy Sheehan. (Let’s give Sheehan credit for consistency, as she’s been pretty vocal about the failure of the rest of the Democratic Party to join her in Happy Pacifist LaLa Land.) Given that lot’s record of being constantly wrong about almost everything, maybe Obama made the right call about getting involved. Then again, a stopped watch is still right twice a day, and I’m sure the jolly pinkos at The Nation would be solidly against invading Canada or Japan.
    6. If not now, when? Gadhafi was never going to be in a weaker position than having an active, popular revolt going on against him.
    7. Our intervention was approved by the UN. I put this one last because the UN is essentially pretty worthless.

    The Case Against U.S. Military Intervention in Libya

    1. Gadhafi’s Libya was not a threat to the United States. Well, before we started bombing him, anyhow. By his standards, Gadhafi was playing nice with the U.S. the last several years.
    2. There were much nastier regimes and bigger threats to American interests in the region. Iran and Syria are both bigger threats and more hostile to U.S. interests than Libya was. Hamasistan in Gaza and Hezbollia in Lebanon are both much bigger threats to peace and regional stability. Saudi Arabia continues to play its double-game of professions of public support for the U.S. while undermining us by funding Wahabbist radical Islam around the world. All are more worrisome and deserving of revolution than Libya.
    3. There are regimes who treat their people much more brutally than Gadhafi was treating his. North Korea and Sudan both come to mind.
    4. Obama did not obtain permission from Congress before sending U.S. troops into combat. I do not believe that the War Powers Resolution is constitutional, but when committing troops to a military action that is not required by an immediate threat to U.S. citizens (Libya is at least ten times a “war of choice rather than necessity” than Iraq was), it’s probably a good idea to seek Congressional approval. Obama failed to do this.
    5. Despite being accused of “going it alone,” Bush had twice as many coalition partners going into Iraq than Obama had gone into Libya. Including such vital U.S. allies as Australia, Japan and South Korea, missing from Obama’s coalition. (To be fair, the absence of Turkey is largely for reasons beyond Obama’s control.)
    6. Screw France. Given France’s failure to support us in Iraq, there’s no particular reason we should be doing their job for them in Libya (notwithstanding the fact that Nicolas Sarkozy is a vast improvement on Jacques Chirac).
    7. Some of the biggest idiots among congressional Democrats, people whose instinct is almost unerringly in its wrongheadedness, like John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi, Barbara Boxer, and Harry Reid are backing Obama’s war in Libya. So the insane wing of the Democratic Party is against the war, while the corrupt wing is for it. No wonder Republicans feel so conflicted.
    8. The Libyan rebels may be a small and poorly armed force of less than 1,000. Does it actually help to support the slightly-less-evil side in a civil war when they end up getting crushed anyway?
    9. Some of the people against Gadhafi are terrorist scumbags. Like the Islamic Emirate of Barqa or Muslim brotherhood cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi. (Other observers have asserted that there is little evidence of Al Qaeda support of the rebels in Libya, and in Benghazi, Susanne Tarkowski Tempelhof, interviewed by Michael Totten, says that the ones she has met so far “are mainly young, educated, middle class, urban people with a powerful wish for democracy.”)
    10. There’s a good chance that, even if they’re not the driving force in the rebellion, Jihadists forces may come out on top in a post-Gadhafi power struggle. In the Middle East, as in most non-Democratic societies, power comes from the muzzle of a gun, and Jihadests tends to be best armed and organized groups, making them prime candidates to fill any power vacuum, including the one in Libya.
    11. Obama’s Libyan adventure is incompatible with the limited defensive goals of a Constitutional Republic. You know, as opposed to every other U.S. use of military force since (at least) World War II. Look, this essay is already long enough without rehashing the forward defense vs. Fortress America, Internationalism vs. Isolationism, Ron Paul vs. George W. Bush debate. That ship has sailed. But I include the point for the sake of completeness.

    Ultimately, a decision to go to war is a lot more complex than a list of pros and cons can capture. I find myself coming down, ever-so-slightly and tentatively, on the side of taking Gadhafi out, based mainly on his past involvement in killing Americans, and by the classic Texas “he needed killin'” principle. But this applies only if the rebels actually win and kill Gadhafi. If not, Obama’s Libyan intervention will be an ill-advised failure, doubly-so if we’re still enforcing a no-fly zone (ala Iraq 1992-2003) a year from now. As Micheal Kinsley put it:

    If Kadafi is still in power a year from now, even if he is obeying the no-fly rules, it will be regarded worldwide as more evidence of America’s decline as a great power and regarded in America as evidence that Democrats in general and Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton in particular are not ready to play foreign policy with the big children.

    Nor does it convince us that Hillary Clinton is ready to sit at the big kid’s table when she blathers on about Bashar Assad being a reformer.

    Thomas Sowell says that Obama’s Libya policy is incoherent (as indeed it is).

    Even more damning is Steven Metz’s piece in The New Republic, mainly because it’s a defense (or at least notes toward a defense) of Obama’s policy from a pro-Obama publication:

    Obama’s Libya strategy is designed to avoid the most undesirable outcomes rather than optimize the chances of a desired outcome, to do something without “owning” the conflict, to maintain maximum flexibility as the situation evolves, and to do all of this in the face of powerful constraints.

    That’s right, Obama isn’t playing to win in Libya, he’s playing not to lose. And playing not to lose is a good way to get your ass handed to you on a plate. (Just ask Guy Lewis how well that strategy worked when the Hakeem Olajuwon/Clyde Drexler-led Phi Slamma Jamma Houston Cougars played the NC State Wolfpack for the NCAA national championship in 1983.) Say what you want about Bush43’s war in Iraq, but he was playing to win, which is why neither Saddam Hussein nor his kin are still around to bedevil the world. Obama’s playing not to lose, while Gadhafi is playing not to die. Who do you think is going to be more motivated? As Mark Steyn notes:

    President Obama’s position, insofar as one can pin it down, seems to be that he’s not in favor of Qaddafi remaining in power but he isn’t necessarily going to do anything to remove him therefrom. According to NBC, Qaddafi was said to be down in the dumps about his prospects until he saw Obama’s speech, after which he concluded the guy wasn’t serious about getting rid of him, and he perked up. He’s certainly not planning on going anywhere. There is an old rule of war that one should always offer an enemy an escape route. Instead, David Cameron, the British prime minister, demanded that Qaddafi be put on trial. So the Colonel is unlikely to trust any offers of exile, and has nothing to lose by staying to the bitter end and killing as many people as possible.

    Says Jed Babbin:

    This is mission creep, Obama style. And no one knows where it will lead because the president apparently intends to go much farther than our NATO allies have agreed, and to continue much longer than they will be able to help.

    Here’s still more from Mark Steyn. He also had this to say:

    With his usual unerring instinct, Barack Obama has chosen to back the one Arab liberation movement who can’t get rid of the local strongman even when you lend them every functioning Nato air force…I guess it all comes down to how serious President Sarkozy is about knocking off Gaddafi. If he’s not, then Libya will be yet another in America’s six-decade-long pantheon of unwon wars…A cynic might almost think the point of the exercise was to demonstrate to the world the superpower’s impotence

    Despite all this, could our intervention in Libya end up creating a modern, functioning democracy? Well, it’s possible, but deeply, deeply unlikely. Then again, even more deeply unlikely things have come to pass in world politics. Soviet hardliners launching an unsuccessful coup that collapsed after a couple of days with only three people dead and inadvertently hastening the demise of the Soviet Union was deeply unlikely. Asa K. Jennings, an American YMCA director saving the lives of the 350,000 people from certain death by declaring himself head the the U.S. relief effort during the Great Fire of Smyrna, shaming the Greek government into giving him use of the Greek fleet, and convincing Mustafa Kemal Ataturk to let him rescue Christians and Jews from the invested city, was a deeply, deeply unlikely outcome. (Someone could make a great film about Jenning’s life.) So it’s possible that Obama’s intervention in Libya might have an optimal outcome in the same way that betting 00 on roulette can earn you a pile of money…but it’s not something you’d be willing to stake your fortune on.

    Obama Loses the David Brooks Vote

    Thursday, January 6th, 2011

    It is well known that one of the biggest reasons for columnist David Brooks’ otherwise inexplicable swoon over Obama was his natty dressing style. “I remember distinctly an image of—we were sitting on his couches, and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant, and I’m thinking, a) he’s going to be president and b) he’ll be a very good president.”

    However, Obama may have just lost the all-important Brooks vote due to this image:

    Can David Brooks possibly love an Obama that can’t even button a jacket correctly? Sure, you and I may think “Eh, it happens.” But we’re not hyper-fashion-aware columnists for The New York Times.

    Also, does anyone doubt that if Bush misbuttoned his jacket, it would have instantly been proclaimed a sign of mental deficiency across the lefty blogosphere?

    The Magic of Self-Delusion (or Why Nancy Pelosi Would Rather Die Than Let You Keep Your Own Money)

    Monday, December 13th, 2010

    The deal Obama struck to extended all the Bush tax cuts is good for America, and also good for the Republican Party. When it was struck, however, the liberal howls of outrage made me think of one other outcome which, while not as good for the nation, would be even better for Republicans: If Nancy Pelosi blocked the deal, the Bush tax cuts (and long-term unemployment) temporarily lapse until the new Republican House takes over in January, at which point they pass a tax cut extension at least as strong as the Obama deal, and probably stronger. So in order to make the point how opposed Democrats are to letting rich people (or “rich” people) keep their own money, they’re willing to let the long-term unemployed stop getting checks for a month (and probably longer), delay economic recovery at least that long, let Republicans pick up an even bigger victory and take all the credit for the deal, make Obama look weaker and make the Democratic Party in general, and Pelosi’s House Democrats in particular, look even more petulant, shrill, and extreme.

    That appears to be exactly what’s going to happen. It’s like some perfect storm of liberal fail.

    The reasons why House Democrats are undertaking such counterproductive and self-destructive behavior probably requires the insights of a psychiatrist more than a political scientist. In the 2010 elections, voters rejected the liberal agenda about as thoroughly as any domestic political agenda has been rejected in our lifetimes. After two years of trying to push the most liberal agenda since LBJ’s “Great Society” expansion of the welfare state in the 1960s, Democrats suffered massive losses, most dramatically in the House, for a switch of 63 seats. For a graphic depiction of how thoroughly liberalism has been rejected, take a look at this Real Clear Politics map of incoming House seats:

    Not only are liberals unwilling to consider why their agenda was rejected by voters, they’re unwilling to even consider that their agenda was rejected. Rather than face up to that unpleasant fact, the nutroots have embraced a far more psychologically satisfying (if political suicidal) explanation for their tidal wave of defeats: Democrats lost the 2010 Election because they just weren’t liberal enough:

    I’m sure I could come up with 10-15 other examples. It’s like that episode of The Critic where Jay Sherman remembers being rejected by a woman he was trying to pick up: “Eww, I don’t like that memory at all! Let’s look at it again through the magic of self-delusion!” All those congressmen lost because they just weren’t as awesomely liberal as I am! High five! Inside the liberal reality bubble, the Democratic Party’s biggest mistake was getting Blue Dog Democrats to run in marginal districts in the first place, and if they had just run people with positions closer to Nancy Pelosi or Alan Grayson in places like Ohio and Pennsylvania, they would have done better.

    Of course, outside the liberal reality bubble, this idea is a laughably naive exercise in vainglorious wish fulfillment. It’s also easily disproven. Take a look at the contrasting fates of Tom Perriello and Jason Altmire.

    Perriello was the golden boy Democratic freshman Representative from Virginia who was not only the darling of liberals, but also loftily declared that he would rather vote for ObamaCare and be defeated than vote against it and be re-elected. Democrats pulled out all the stops to save his seat, sending him $1.6 million over a 10-day period and having Obama appear personally on his behalf. If the nutroots theory that liberals just needed a candidate worth fighting for to lure them to the polls to assure victory were correct, Perriello should have been a shoe-in. He lost.

    Altmire, by contrast, was one of those loathsome “Blue Dog Democrats” that so many liberals feel are merely Republicans in disguise. He voted against ObamaCare. If liberal theories were correct, disheartened liberals should have assured his defeat. He won in a year that fellow Blue Dogs who voted for ObamaCare were being slaughtered.

    So the current Pelosi-lead liberal temper tantrum is impossible to explain given the objective political needs of the Democratic Party. However, it’s all too easy to explain given the psychological needs of liberals.

    For years liberals have believed that majority status (like The New York Times and black voters) was their unquestioned birthright. Never mind that between 1968 and 2004, a Democratic Presidential candidate had topped 50% of the popular vote exactly once (the post-Watergate Jimmy Carter, who managed to garner a whopping 50.08% of the popular vote in 1976). For them, Republican victories were aberrations from the supposed norm. They truly believed that America was a “center-left” nation, despite polls consistently showing twice as many Americans identified themselves as conservatives rather than liberals. They believed people like John B. Judis and Ruy Teixeira who assured them Democrats were the natural majority party, and would take over their natural role as lords of the earth any day now.

    And then the 2006 and 2008 election seemed to confirm the theory. Yes! This was it! This was their moment! Finally all of their dreams would come true! Obama was one of them, and with the House and Senate firmly in Democratic control, he would completely replace all the intolerable policies of his predecessor, “that idiot Bush.” He would end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, close down Guantanamo Bay, legalize gay marriage, use Keynesian economics to fix the economy, and nationalize health care. The liberal moment had arrived at last. It was so close they could taste it.

    But a funny thing happened on the way to the liberal nirvana. What the rest of us call “real life,” and what liberals attributed to an ever-expanding cast of villains (Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, Rasmussen Reports) they lumped together as “the right-wing noise machine” inexplicably rose up to thwart their righteous will. The economy stayed broke, and if the Stimulus did anything it made it worse. The Tea Party happened. Cap-and-Trade went down in flames. Obama figured out that Bush’s anti-terror policies weren’t bad at all now that he was the one who had to deal with the problems. Democrats managed to pull the Zombie ObamaCare over the finish-line despite widespread opposition, but it was a far cry from the glorious platonic idea of a fully nationalized, single-payer system that existed in their mind’s eye (and nowhere else). Then the voters, the same voters liberals believed in their heart of hearts was naturally liberal, rejected them. They were like a football team a mere quarter away from winning the Superbowl, only to have the opposing team rack up three touchdowns on them in the last five minutes. How can this be happening? What did I do to deserve this?

    When a party gets walloped in an election, usually it takes time to reflect on why voters might have rejected its message, and what parts of that message (and the party) need to be changed. If you’ve seen All That Jazz (and if you haven’t, you should; it’s a great movie), then you’re probably familiar with the Kubler-Ross grief cycle: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance. Obama has moved on to at least the third stage, but House Democrats and the nutroots can’t get past the first two.

    Conservatives have many interests that might supersede politics: Family, jobs, religion. But for many liberals, the political is personal. As far as they’re concerned, there’s Good (represented by Big Government run by liberals and doing the things liberals want it to do), and there’s Evil (big business (unless its unionized), rich people (unless they went to the right schools), Fox News, etc.). They believe the same things all their Facebook friends and newspapers and TV shows and NPR agree with! It’s inconceivable to them that people of good will might disagree with them.

    After all, they’re Good! The other side is Evil! That’s why they write books with names like What’s Wrong With Kansas? rather than Why Can’t We Convince Kansas To Embrace Higher Taxes and Bigger Government? They’ve spent the last 20-years believing that voters are liberals, so it’s impossible that voters rejected liberalism itself. That would be tantamount to voters saying they rejected them personally. That’s unpossible! After all, they’re awesome! No, this could only have been happened because the voters have been tricked. Liberalism didn’t lose, liberalism was stabbed in the back. Hence the hunt for traitors and scapegoats that snatched away their prize at the last moment.

    To actually listen to what voters were telling them would mean abandoning the worldview that they’ve clung to so fervently for so long. Thus every bit of cognitive dissonance only makes them cling more fervently to the belief that voters haven’t, didn’t, couldn’t reject liberalism itself. After all, they’re awesome, aren’t they? Aren’t they? Voters sent them a message good and hard, but they have to deny it, because their denial is all they have left. Liberalism can never fail, because whenever it appears to, then ipso facto it wasn’t really liberalism that was failing, just like Communist apologists claim that all those failed Communist states weren’t really Communist, because communism never fails inside the platonic fantasyland of their Marxist imaginations.

    And into this seething cauldron of anger and denial comes Obama, blithely announcing the deal to extend the Bush Tax Cuts. After all, Obama still has to govern the nation for the next two years. Clearly the economy is isn’t responding to Obamanomics, so something else needs to be done. And if the Bush Tax Cuts expire, Obama knows that Democrats are the ones that will get the blame for the biggest tax hike in history. So he cut the best deal he thought he could, knowing he would have even less leverage after the Republican House took over in January.

    In essence, Obama was saying that voters had indeed rejected liberalism. He was ruining their denial! Here was their traitor at last: Obama the secret Republican.

    So the House, under the leadership of Nancy Pelosi, decided to stand and fight on the only issue that seems to unite their base: Their hatred of the wealthy, and their love of other people’s money. The idea that money might belong to the people that actually earned it, rather than the federal government, fills them with rage. Here was their line in the sand: We have to screw the rich, even if it means screwing the poor and the middle class in the process! Even if it makes them more unpopular. Even if the Republicans will just pass a deal even less to their liking in January. So they have to oppose extending the Bush tax cuts, even though it will make the rest of the nation think they’re even more petty, vindictive, and out-of-touch than they already did. When it comes to preserving their wounded egos, rationality goes out the window. If it comes down to voters rejecting liberalism, or liberals rejecting reality, then to hell with reality. It’s no longer about policy, it’s about pride.

    And pride goeth before a fall.