Home > Uncategorized > Republicans Need to Save Their Party

Republicans Need to Save Their Party

Peggy Noonan is a bona fide conservative with true blue credentials. She was Ronald Reagan’s top speech writer in the White House and now serves as columnist for the Wall Street Journal, a hlgh-respected right-leaning publication. Some people don’t like it when I cut-and-paste. Too bad. Here is the bulk of a column printed in WSJ yesterday that is as heartfelt of a critique of where we have gone wrong — on immigration and other issues — as I seen in the last seven years.

“What political conservatives and on-the-ground Republicans must understand at this point is that they are not breaking with the White House on immigration. They are not resisting, fighting and thereby setting down a historical marker–“At this point the break became final.” That’s not what’s happening. What conservatives and Republicans must recognize is that the White House has broken with them. What President Bush is doing, and has been doing for some time, is sundering a great political coalition. This is sad, and it holds implications not only for one political party but for the American future.

The White House doesn’t need its traditional supporters anymore, because its problems are way beyond being solved by the base. And the people in the administration don’t even much like the base. Desperate straits have left them liberated, and they are acting out their disdain. Leading Democrats often think their base is slightly mad but at least their heart is in the right place. This White House thinks its base is stupid and that its heart is in the wrong place.

For almost three years, arguably longer, conservative Bush supporters have felt like sufferers of battered wife syndrome. You don’t like endless gushing spending, the kind that assumes a high and unstoppable affluence will always exist, and the tax receipts will always flow in? Too bad! You don’t like expanding governmental authority and power? Too bad. You think the war was wrong or is wrong? Too bad.

The president has taken to suggesting that opponents of his immigration bill are unpatriotic–they “don’t want to do what’s right for America.” His ally Sen. Lindsey Graham has said, “We’re gonna tell the bigots to shut up.” On Fox last weekend he vowed to “push back.” Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff suggested opponents would prefer illegal immigrants be killed; Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez said those who oppose the bill want “mass deportation.” Former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson said those who oppose the bill are “anti-immigrant” and suggested they suffer from “rage” and “national chauvinism.”

Why would they speak so insultingly, with such hostility, of opponents who are concerned citizens? And often, though not exclusively, concerned conservatives? It is odd, but it is of a piece with, or a variation on, the “Too bad” governing style. And it is one that has, day by day for at least the past three years, been tearing apart the conservative movement.

The beginning of my own sense of separation from the Bush administration came in January 2005, when the president declared that it is now the policy of the United States to eradicate tyranny in the world, and that the survival of American liberty is dependent on the liberty of every other nation. This was at once so utopian and so aggressive that it shocked me. For others the beginning of distance might have been Katrina and the incompetence it revealed, or the depth of the mishandling and misjudgments of Iraq.

What I came in time to believe is that the great shortcoming of this White House, the great thing it is missing, is simple wisdom. Just wisdom–a sense that they did not invent history, that this moment is not all there is, that man has lived a long time and there are things that are true of him, that maturity is not the same thing as cowardice, that personal loyalty is not a good enough reason to put anyone in charge of anything, that the way it works in politics is a friend becomes a loyalist becomes a hack, and actually at this point in history we don’t need hacks.

One of the things I have come to think the past few years is that the Bushes, father and son, though different in many ways, are great wasters of political inheritance. They throw it away as if they’d earned it and could do with it what they liked. Bush senior inherited a vibrant country and a party at peace with itself. He won the leadership of a party that had finally, at great cost, by 1980, fought itself through to unity and come together on shared principles. Mr. Bush won in 1988 by saying he would govern as Reagan had. Yet he did not understand he’d been elected to Reagan’s third term. He thought he’d been elected because they liked him. And so he raised taxes, sundered a hard-won coalition, and found himself shocked to lose his party the presidency, and for eight long and consequential years. He had many virtues, but he wasted his inheritance.

Bush the younger came forward, presented himself as a conservative, garnered all the frustrated hopes of his party, turned them into victory, and not nine months later was handed a historical trauma that left his country rallied around him, lifting him, and his party bonded to him. He was disciplined and often daring, but in time he sundered the party that rallied to him, and broke his coalition into pieces. He threw away his inheritance. I do not understand such squandering.

Now conservatives and Republicans are going to have to win back their party. They are going to have to break from those who have already broken from them. This will require courage, serious thinking and an ability to do what psychologists used to call letting go. This will be painful, but it’s time. It’s more than time.”

  1. Thomas W
    June 1, 2007 at 3:22 pm

    Let me add fuel to the fire, so to speak. I was reading this morning about a bill that would have opened up more of the government to those who want to know by allowing more access to areas not regarded as confidential or prejudicial to possible prosecution or national security. Using a little known secrecy provision in Senatorial procedures, one Senator has effectively blocked that bill from coming up for a vote. This is a bill that is supported by both the Republicans and the Democrat.Unfortunately this Senator is a loyal supporter of the Bush administration, which in it’s self is no crime and I do admire him for his loyalty. However, having said that, I think that here he is misguided and in error.
    Due to a lot of pressure from both sides, he has been finally smoked out. Here is the gist of the article I read this morning.
    WASHINGTON — Advocates of a bill promoting openness in government are fuming that a Republican senator is blocking a vote on the measure.

    Dozens of journalism and advocacy groups supporting the Open Government Act say it would speed up the government’s response to public requests for information under the federal Freedom of Information law.

    But Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., says the Justice Department has “uncharacteristically strong” objections to the bill. In a statement Thursday, he said he will block a vote until both sides can work out the differences.

    Supporters of the bill are irate.

    “This is a good government bill that Democrats and Republicans alike can and should work together to enact. It should be passed without further delay,” said Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., who sponsored the bill with Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas.

    Frustrated, Leahy now is pressing senators to clear the bill for a vote.

    Advocates who range from the Society of Professional Journalists to the Humane Society of the United States are particularly rankled because Kyl initially objected under a Senate rule that allows one member with concerns to hold up legislation anonymously.

    Kyl revealed his identity Thursday, days after the bill’s backers launched an e-mail and telephone campaign, urging supporters to help in “smoking out ‘Senator Secrecy.'” They pointed out the irony that an open government bill was being blocked using a rule that allowed secrecy.

    Supporters say the bill would plug loopholes in the FOIA law by, among other things, clarifying when federal agencies would have to pay attorneys fees if they miss deadlines to provide information, and bolstering deadlines for the government’s response to requests under the law.

    Although the Justice Department has objected strenuously to several provisions, advocates say they have answered or addressed the major concerns.

    For example, a section has been eliminated that would have lifted exemptions letting the government deny access to privileged or law-enforcement sensitive information, said Leahy spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler.

    Kyl also has argued that forcing the government to pay attorneys fees — even when it settles a case without going to court — could make it less likely to settle or change a decision about a FOIA request.

    Advocates disagree. They say the government likely would pay less if it voluntarily disclosed records in court proceedings, giving it an incentive to release information earlier in the process.

    Kyl said he raised concerns when the Judiciary Committee voted on the bill in April, and that Leahy agreed to work with him and the Justice Department to try to reach a consensus. But Leahy hasn’t heard from Kyl on the bill since it passed the Judiciary Committee, Schmaler said.

    A similar bill passed the House earlier this year. Advocates believe the Senate will approve it as well.

    “This is an important, bipartisan issue that deserves the consideration of the full Senate,” Cornyn said.
    By the way, I sourced this article from the Houston Chronicle and here is the link. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/politics/4852037.html

  2. Anonymous
    June 1, 2007 at 6:44 pm

    You can’t make this crap up

    Al Qaida suspects sue Boeing, with ACLU’s help

    WASHINGTON — Boeing has been sued by suspected Al Qaida operatives transported by the CIA to Arab countries for interrogation and torture.

    The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a federal lawsuit against Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen Dataplan on behalf of three Al Qaida suspects transported by the CIA under the so-called “extraordinary rendition program.”
    The suit charged that Jeppesen helped the CIA transport the three plaintiffs to secret locations in Egypt and Morocco, where the company knew they would undergo torture.

    “American corporations should not be profiting from a CIA rendition program that is unlawful and contrary to core American values,” ACLU executive director Anthony Romero said. “Corporations that choose to participate in such activity can and should be held legally accountable.”

    The plaintiffs named in the suit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, were Binyam Mohamed, Abou Elkassim Britel and Ahmed Agiza. Britel and Mohamed were said to have been flown by the CIA to Morocco. Agiza was taken to Egypt.
    The suit said Jeppesen, based in San Jose, Calif., has been a key provider of flight and logistical support services for CIA aircraft in the rendition program. Since December 2001, the suit said, Jeppesen provided flight and logistical support to at least 15 CIA aircraft that conducted 70 rendition flights.

    Jeppesen was said to have provided aircraft crew and flight planning services for the CIA program. The subsidiary also ensured customs clearance and security for CIA aircraft and crew.

    “Jeppesen’s services have been crucial to the functioning of the government’s extraordinary rendition program,” ACLU staff attorney Steven Watt said. “Without the participation of companies like Jeppesen, the program could not have gotten off the ground.”

    The suit was filed under the Alien Tort Statute, which permits aliens to bring claims in the United States for alleged violations that involve American citizens or assets. The statute accounts for torture.

    In 2002, Mohamed, an Ethiopian national, was transported to Morocco, where he spent 18 months in prison in what the suit asserted included torture by the intelligence services of the North African kingdom. In 2004, he was taken by the CIA to a secret U.S. detention facility in Kabul, Afghanistan, and then to the U.S. Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where he remains.

    Britel was flown from Pakistan to Morocco in 2002. He was said to have remained in Morocco. Agiza was taken from Sweden to Egypt and remains in detention.

    “For the first five weeks after his arrival in Egypt, Mr. Agiza was detained incommunicado,” the suit said. “During his time and for some 10 weeks thereafter, he was repeatedly and severely tortured and denied meaningful access to consular officials, family members and lawyers.”

  3. NewsstandGreg
    June 1, 2007 at 8:22 pm


    You seem to be adding to the list of reasons people and some Republicans have for losing faith in the current Republican party.

    The party of Bush 41 and 43.

    Which seems to be the reason so many of the current crop of Republican presidential candidates keep repeating the word “Reagan” so often.

    A magic mantra. Though, looking at a news report of a recent Republican candidates debate, they may also be looking for a “Jack Bauer” covert ops guy who can get a dirty job done quick.

    But that’s only on TV. This is the real world…right?

    Anon, what do you think sincere Republicans can do to “save their party?” –Newsstand Greg

  4. rudy mcCain
    June 1, 2007 at 9:16 pm

    I think Greg has an excellent point. If Bush 41 and 43 are so great, why are all the current Repuvlican candidates rushing to embrace…Reagan?

  5. Anonymous
    June 2, 2007 at 1:32 am

    The government could easily track all animals with satellite technology. Patriot Act No! Animal owners YES!

    what’s next?

  6. Tony Romero
    June 2, 2007 at 3:36 am

    Those 100 hours were very impressive. We love you Nancy

  7. Bob from San Luis
    June 2, 2007 at 6:19 am

    Dave, Tom, Greg: They (those who support President Bush) have got nothing. It is so sad that some people cannot come to terms that the man that they admired so much when he stepped up after 9/11 has betrayed so many American ideals, and they don’t care, or seem to notice! All of you who support President Bush even now, can I ask you to think about how you would have felt about him as a candidate in 2000 if he would have stated that he was going to do all that his administration has done since he has been in office? Signing statements he makes on bills he signs into law, but then declares himself above or excluded from? Ignoring the Constitution and proclaiming that he alone can declare anybody including Americans, enemy combatants, which by the rules he has engineered suspends all legal rights of those individuals? Making war on a country that had no capacity to harm us, had never threatened us, and even by the Presidents own admission (“We have no credible evidence that Saddam was linked to 9/11“) which has resulted in the horrendous number of American and Iraqi casualties? The totally incompetent handling of Hurricane Katrina? The hiring of cronies and political hacks that had no experience and have bungled so many jobs (in Iraq, in the Justice Dept. to name a few)? In the 2004 presidential campaign, John Kerry was effectively painted as a “flip-flopper” because he changed his mind and then clumsily tried to explain why he had done so; in 2000 candidate George W. Bush claimed that we would not engage in “nation-building”, that he would control spending; yet seemingly every single item he campaigned on he has “flip-flopped”, but you all do not seem to have any problems with anything he has done. How can you be so gullible?

  8. Puncho
    June 2, 2007 at 2:55 pm

    After Sgt. Richard V. Correa learned that his tour in Iraq would be months longer than expected, he wrote on his MySpace Web page, “I got extended!!! I ain’t ever coming home!!!”

    Tragically, Correa was right. The 25-year-old man from Honolulu was killed Tuesday, along with another Army soldier, by a roadside bomb.

    Correa was a highly decorated soldier assigned to the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), based in Fort Drum, N.Y., according to the Department of Defense.

    He is the 139th military person with Hawaii ties to die in Iraq since the war began in March 2003.

  9. Anonymous
    June 2, 2007 at 4:49 pm

    Yes! Yes! Yes! Thank you Dave! Now we can get back to Bush hating! I love this blog! Goerge Sorros needs to send some money to KVEC to support more Bush hating!
    Hating Bush always makes my day go better! But now we are hating the entire repiblican party! Oh! This is way too good!
    We will all learn very soon that the terror attack threat at JFK was made up by Bush and Rove!
    We need to hate Bush more…and embrace our muslim friends. After all what’s wrong with killing a few innocent people for the “hate Bush cause”?
    Muslims are just misunderstood…we need to embrace them and welcome them into our country since our savage and ruthless military has ruined their garden of eden!
    Hate Bush! Embrace muslims! Thank you Dave! You have made my saturday almost perfect!

  10. Thomas W
    June 2, 2007 at 6:28 pm

    Dear Anonymous;
    I would hope that not everyone at KVEC hates Bush. I for one do not hate Mr Bush, however, I do think that he has made some mistakes and listened to advice that has and will continue to do him harm as a Politician and leader. Because I disagree with the President of the United States does not mean that I hate him nor does it mean that I disrespect the office of the Presidency.
    Please, please be careful with your use of words as they tend to reflect back on your personality and I’m sure you are a better person than that.

  11. Paul
    June 2, 2007 at 10:01 pm

    The reason many of us support the president is that the very idea of supporting Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reed, Dick Durban or anybody else on the other side of the aisle is repulsive. Those people don’t seem to have any common sense, or conscience. Most of us in the conservative movement were once liberals and we know it doesn’t work. We are well aquainted with your B.S. because we used to spew it ourselves. We think your policies are as good as fairy tales, they are entertaining to children, but when you grow up you let them go.
    So here we have a president that looks to be failing, on the other hand, Saddam and his precious offspring are dead, we have two new conservative judges on the Supreme Court, a ban on partial birth abortion, and an election coming up where any of the republican candidates will be a better choice than a democrat.
    Puncho- sorry to hear about your friend, I hope this war is over sooner rather than later.

  12. Dave Congalton
    June 2, 2007 at 10:32 pm


    I understand why you refuse to put your name to your argument — if this was the best I could do, I wouldn’t give my name either.

    We are not back to Bush-bashing. I have posted a column by one of the most thoughtful, respectful, intelligent CONSERVATIVE VOICES of the last 30 years. I am sharing her thoughts are what is going wrong with the conservative movement these days and what needs to be done to correct the problem.

    So have at it Anoymouse — challenge Ms. Noonan on ANYTHING. Show us what you got, pal.

  13. Anonymous
    June 2, 2007 at 11:10 pm

    Well whatever…we still need a democrat back in the white house! We need sex, drugs and rock-n-roll to prevail in American politics again! We need the good old days of Bubba and Jack “do em all” Kennedy!
    Sorry to be so zealous! All this morality, and fighting for democracy & freedom for other nations, and a strong economy is boring!
    Where is a good cigar when ya need one?

  14. Dave Congalton
    June 3, 2007 at 2:11 am


    I’d rather have Bill Clinton doing Monica in the White House than 3500 dead American soldiers.
    Come to think of it, I’d rather have that Clinton economy, too!

  15. Bob from San Luis
    June 3, 2007 at 4:21 am

    Paul: Why do you hate the Democrats?

    That was, of course, in jest; but when someone makes a statement similar to yours directed at the Republicans, they are accused of hating. Seems like a double standard. It is curious how comparing the two political parties leads to generalizations and mischaracterizations as well. Example: Republicans tout their ability to stay on message as a virtue, whereas critics of the Republicans label them as to rigid and unable to accommodate those in the party who think differently (Log Cabin Republicans and the party’s unwavering stance against gay rights). Democrats tout their ability to attempt to accommodate many different views, and are criticized as being “unfocused” or even “spineless”.
    I have said this before and I honestly believe this: Our nation would be better served if political parties were eliminated entirely. Can you imagine voting for someone because of what they say they will do, then either reelecting them because they are doing that, or bringing in someone else because they didn’t do what they promised. Too bad it will never happen.
    As for a President who looks to be failing; that would be because he is failing. Unless you are in the top five percent income bracket, or you are cheering the so-called partial birth abortion ban. As for any of the Republican candidates being better than any Democrat, look closely at the Democratic lineup; one of them will be the next President.

  16. Anonymous
    June 3, 2007 at 2:02 pm

    Bob are you a graduate of the Frankfurt School?

  17. Anonymous
    June 3, 2007 at 2:40 pm

    Me too Dave! I want Bubba back! Sex in the white house is perfect! You are on the right track!
    But here is how we can win on all fronts!
    1) Elect Hillary
    2) Obama as VP
    3) Bubba as first man!

    See? we not only get an abused woman as president we a get a lesbian at the same time! A great double whammy!
    With Obama we get a man raised half white and half muslim by a man that abused his mother…It’s a fit with Bubba’s agenda!

    Then it’s a short walk to fully liberated gay rights…The traditional marriage will be history as Bubba nails anything that walks while married to the president

    Then we embrace our muslim friends with Oboama! We scoot fast from the middle east and let them live as they want! Heck! We had a nasty civil war why can’t they?

    We agree! A lesbian as president, a muslim black as VP and a womanizer as the first gentleman!

    Hahaha! Traditional Christians will be shaking in their dogmatic boots! And the rest of nation can say the hell with morals and values! If it feels good do it!

    And as we peruse our fleshly pleasures if we stumble…we al ways have the government to provide for us!

    It makes me shiver in glee to see the perfection of your strategy Dave! This blog rocks!

  18. Harry Pelosi
    June 3, 2007 at 4:11 pm

    I’ve got the power now

  19. Anonymous
    June 3, 2007 at 6:22 pm

    Call your congress person or senators now! If we can get this amnesty bill through fast we can get a few more million mexicans in the US before the next election and win the white for sure!
    We want open borders north and south! If a few terrorists make it through it’s no big deal since they like democrats anyways…we’re safe!
    It’s a win/win!
    Vote yes on the amnesty bill and let’s save our Mexican voters! So what if they broke our laws! Our country is too uptight anyway.
    Let’s tax the rich to pay for all the social services the illegals need. God this country is great!

  20. paul
    June 4, 2007 at 12:23 am

    Hey Bob,
    Yeah, it’s kind of hard to not sound hateful in these blogs, but I don’t hate liberals. I just think they’re wrong.
    Our election system leaves a lot to be desired, for sure, but I doubt that there is anybody around anymore with the wisdom and integrity that our founding fathers had who could come up with a better one.
    I don’t know how old you are but people in my generation used to know that the gov. is not something to depend on. (I get this picture of a monkey and a football) When I was growing up I thought that was the platform of the left, but I was wrong.
    When the republicans started acting like the dems they lost their seats and that’s a good thing. We tend to vote our conscience not party. I doubt the democrats will do the same thing, they’re too “unfocused”.
    As far as candidates go, the only hope you all have is Obama and the dem. party machine will destroy him long before the election. He’s already having to prove that he’s black enough.
    BTW did you mean so called “ban” or so called “partial birth abortion”?

  21. Anonymous
    June 4, 2007 at 3:25 am

    In a newly released british documnetary President Bush has been directly linked to the death of Princess Diana.
    When will this lying killer be brought to justice?
    How many more will have to die senselessly before he is imprisoned or worse?
    and Paul! Please leave Bob alone! We all love him here.
    You have no facts! There is nothing wrong with killing a viable human being while still in the birth canal! Leave our women alone to do what they want!

  22. Marilyn
    June 4, 2007 at 4:33 am


    Marine Vet Adam Kokesh Defends Right of Dissent

  23. Dave Congalton
    June 4, 2007 at 5:02 am


    The scenario you sketch out, complete with offensive and sexist stereotypes is fine. I’ll take Barack-Hillary-Bubba in the White House gladly.

    If they were in there now, there’d be 3500 more Americans still alive.

    Get back to me when you figure out how to rise from personal attack to arguing. I can’t wait!

  24. Rich from Paso
    June 4, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    The main thing that the Republican party needs to do is to get back to what works. That is why all the Republican Candidates wax rhapsodically about Reagan. 80 straight months of economic expansion, return of pride in America and prestige on the world stage, the list goes on and on. It seems genetic that the Bush clan campaigns as Conservatives and governs as Democrats. I just don’t understand that about the Bushes.

    Anyhow, I think the Republicans will win in ’08 for one reason: the American voters respect Chief Executive types over the legislator types. Think I’m wrong, gues again. Since 1956, the US has had only three members of Congress (Ford, Johnson, Kennedy) as President. The rest have either been governors, vice-presidents, and one general. The Democrats are critically short on candidates that have actually ran something other than their mouths this time around. Bill Richardson is the only candidate from the Democratic side that has CEO experience as governor of NM. On the Republican side, you have five qualified CEO types (in no particular order: Romney, Gulliani, Huckabee, Gilmore, Thompson). That is why I would vote for Bill Richardson over John McCain, assuming both men got the nomination of their parties.

    I think that, more than likely, Rudy Gulianni will get the Republican nomination and will run against Hillary. Gulianni gets the nomination because of his leadership in turning around New York City and because of 9/11; Hillary gets the nomination because the Democrat machine is geared to give her the nomination and because she is Bill Clinton’s wife; there is no other reason. This would set up a rematch between the two of the 2000 senate race where Rudy had to drop out because of a heart ailment (you like to talk about not having 3500 dead in Iraq if Gore had won; think about your candidates for 2008 if Rudy had stayed in that race). Hillary has high negatives in polling from both parties, while Rudy only gets negatives from Republicans for some of his social stances.

    Because of my perceived desire on the part of the American voter for candidates with Chief Executive experience and because Rudy is more likeable than Hillary, Rudy Gulianni wins the presidency in 2008.

    There you go, you heard it here first.

    BTW, there would have been 1,350 more people alive in California in 2005 alone if we didn’t have drunk drivers. 16,885 people died nationally that year from drunk drivers. So let’s ban alcohol… again. It’s the only way to truly prevent anyone from ever dying from a drunk driver again. So what that it would destroy the economy of the Central Coast and cost thousands of people their jobs. How selfish can you be to want your glass of wine or a cold beer when people are dying everyday from drunk drivers somewhere in the US? The US has the highest rate of drunk driving of all developed nations according to MADD. Those lives are more important than jobs and money. Think about the money Americans would save if alcohol was banned. Think of all of the health benefits from no more alcohol. I want a date certain when irresponsible people will no longer be able to kill innocent people when they get behind the wheels of their cars drunk. How many Americans would be alive today if our leaders back then had shown some backbone and kept Prohibition in place? I bet those that repealed it wish they could take back their votes now that there has been so many dead from their political cowardice.

    Who’s with me on this?

  25. New Tone
    June 4, 2007 at 9:43 pm

    Really Dave,

    If Clinton was in the white house you would have that wonderful economy of Enron and MCI-WCOM. You would have prevented 911? If nothing was done to the terrorists then? Somalia? Do you remember what we did when the warlord killed a few of our men? We left. Did they attack again? The Cole. 911, 3000 dead in maybe an hour…what would have been the next step?

    Clinton. Initiator of the “Carnivore” web filter of the Gov’t, the Guerrelic wall of seperation between the CIA and the criminal proceeding against terrorist that helped the 911 hijackers stay under the radar?

    Clinton, in charge during the recession that began when Bush took over. The Tax cuts that he tried so hard to do but couldn’t have raised record tax receipts that would have never been raised by higher percentages of taxes on working people and the job producers (The hated rich)

    Clinton fixed….Health Care…no….um the environment?….no. Dave, what did he accomplish during his term that the republicans led by Newt didn’t make him do except for a stain in the oval office floor. Yeah, comin up empty here too buddy. Peace out. The Newt One.

    P.S. Hope ya’ll didn’t miss me too much, been out of the country in Mexico for a while.

  26. NewsstandGreg
    June 4, 2007 at 11:56 pm

    Hmmm. Back on track about what the Republicans do now to “save their party.”

    How about rethinking what it means to have a “conservative” philosophy? George Will, columnist for Newsweek and The Washington Post, expounds upon it.

    Here’s a preview of a well-stated response by Greg Anrig, a writer and Century Foundation think tank member.

    Anrig cautions, “before plunging into Will’s “confident explanation of why America has two parties and why the conservative one is preferable,” let me point out three noteworthy features of his argument:

    1) he doesn’t mention a single conservative individual who has actually governed,

    2) the only concrete fact or figure he marshals is that health care constitutes 16 percent of the economy and rising, and

    3) he is reciting exactly the same rigmarole that he and other conservatives have repeated since before Reagan was president, as though the failures of conservatives to deliver on their promises while in power during most of the interim somehow isn’t germane to the discussion.

    So what IS germane to this discussion? –Newsstand Greg

  27. Paul
    June 5, 2007 at 1:24 am

    I’m in.
    That’s bad isn’t it, sorry it was all I could come up with and I have to go eat.

  28. Anonymous
    June 5, 2007 at 2:12 am

    Yes! Clinton’s in the white house again! That is the only answer!
    They would leave are Illegal meicans alone…they would embrace our fellow muslim brothers and sisters…raise taxes on those filty rich white republicans!
    Let’s get back to the good old days! Sex belongs on the white house! Everybody doing everybody and Bubba leading the cause!
    Gays coming out of every closet! And redesigning those hideous military uniforms! We need our soldiers in some flashy colors and better accesorized too!
    Oh how I long for the days imorality, sexual freedom and high taxes on all the uptight rich conservative Christian republicans!
    I say we start a local chapter of Hezbullah! Who’s in? Marilyn can help organize it…
    It’s so sweet I can tate it now!
    There is nothing better than watching the republicans going down in flames!
    Bolg on SLO! We will prevail!

  29. Marilyn
    June 5, 2007 at 2:24 am

    Too many stalkers on this blog. This is getting ridiculous. What has “Hezbullah” got to do with what we are talking about? Talk of obsession. No wonder we can’t fix our own house. We’re too busy hating people we don’t even know and we’re too busy to deal with our own.

    Hey, last anonymous. You got a gripe with “Hezbollah” go take it up with them. Maybe you should move to Lebanon and fight that political battle over there if they annoy you so much and leave the Republicans, the Democrats,and the well-being of our soldiers to the rest of us.

  30. Steve
    June 5, 2007 at 4:14 am

    Marilyn point about moving to Lebanon is valid. Why would anyone want to be there?
    The opposite holds true for the USA on immigration, but Marilyn is at the front oh the line to “blast” anything my country does that does not suit her agenda.

  31. billyD
    June 5, 2007 at 4:25 am

    RiCH lets see wine has been around for O a few thousand years and you say lets get rid of it they tried that it didnt work. MORE people die driving sober than in the last two conflics wheve had.
    yes drunk driving is a broblem
    but its up to us as individuals to not drink and drive. on that subject when your driving how many people do you see reading maps,books maykup,our just dont keep there eyes on the road.

  32. Rich from Paso
    June 5, 2007 at 6:01 am

    Marilyn: That last annonymous is the reason why parents shouldn’t leave their pre-adolescent children alone on a computer with the internet; you just never know what they are going to say. While you and I don’t agree on much, I must commend you on trying to answer it in an intelligent way, even though the author seems to lack that same level of intelligence.

    Billyd: You totally missed my point, but thanks for playing.

  33. the ghost of christmas past
    June 5, 2007 at 6:20 am

    Soon I expect a post on “Democrats need to save their party”. The indictment of William “Cold Cash” Jefferson, D-LA, is the first in a soon to be long line of Democrats in their own “culture of corruption”.

    Jack Murtha is a complete moron. I can’t believe you admire him, Dave. He is not even qualified to be the village idiot much less a powerful member of Congress. He said that our war in Iraq has prompted the guys in Trinadad to attack the United States, which is crap. He then says that the 9-11 hijackers were from Afghanistan and not the rest of the Muslim world. Point of fact: 9-11 happened in the Year 2001. Our embasy in Iran was seized in 1979. The Marine Barracks in Beruit were bombed in 1983. Khobar Towers happened in the 1996. Our two embassies in Africa were bombed in 1998. The USS Cole was attacked in 2000. All of them before we invaded Iraq. Furthermore, the 19 9-11 hijackers only trained in Afghanistan and not a one of them was Afghani. They were actually from Saudi Arabia (15), the UAE (2), Egypt (1) and Marilyn’s homeland of Lebanon (1). Khalid Shiek Mohamed is from Kuwait. Al Zawahiri is a doctor from Egypt. Zarqawi was from Jordan. Osama bin Laden is from Saudi Arabia. So none of the people responsible for 9-11 were from Afghanistan. Murtha becomes more of a national embarassment and a source of inspiration to our enemies every time that soup-cooler, hole under his nose opens and the vacuum that exists within his head is exposed to the world for all to see. What the hell is Pennsylvania thinking electing that boob? It is Jack Murtha that is poisoning the discourse with his pure innane blithering ignorance.

  34. Dave Congalton
    June 5, 2007 at 6:48 am

    New Tone,

    Good to have you back and it’s good to have an opponent who is at least capable of advancing a cogent argument. Thank you.

    Believe me, I’m no huge fan of Bill Clinton, but I’ll take his two terms in office, Monica and all, against The Pretender we have now. Bush remains the worst president in modern history and everything he touches from foreign policy to the environment to the loss of personal liberty seems to self destruct.

    You’re right with some things aobut The Clintons. Hillary took a huge misstep on health care. Don’t ask. Don’t tell was a disaster. What upset me the most was the Telecom Act of 1996 where Clinton essentially sold off broadcast spectrum space and allowed corporations to take over radio and TV once and for all.

    Could he have done more about terrorism? Absolutely. But he foiled the LAX plot on New Year’s Eve and there were no more attacks on WTC until 2001. He does get credit for the economy. We had a pretty good ride back there as I recall.

    Neither guy will get on Mount Rushmore. Clinton will be remembered as a smart guy brought down by his personal demons. So much potential unrealized.

    But what will W’s legacy be? Even the conservatives are jumping ship on this guy.

  35. Anonymous
    June 5, 2007 at 1:13 pm

    I LOVE Hezbullah! I think this war on terror only deprives our muslim friends their religeous freedoms! Chatholics pray the rosary…Christians try to force their own morality…and muslims have to rid the world of infidels. All should be allowed full expression of religeous freedoms!
    It’s not about hate, although we all love to hate Bush…It;s about acceptance. And if muslims kill in the name of their god we should allow that! Why fight a war against them? We need to embrace and support them and their god given mission on the planet!
    That’s why we need a democrat in the White house! Tht’s why the republicans are crashing and burning! They only want to stop the free expression of one’s religon…and that is not what America should be about!
    As for blog stalkers…I agree! There are way too many conservative thinkers here…This is a liberal fight Rush and Fox news blog! We need to balance all the propaganda with the real truth!
    After all…whats wrong with killing in the name of god? It’s been done for centuries! Why stop our muslim friends now?
    Muslims rock! We love muslims here! All types and shapes! If a few thousand die while they practice their religeous freedom so be it!
    We can always tax the rich republicans so the families and loved ones left behind are well cared for.
    Man! I love this blog!

  36. eric
    June 5, 2007 at 1:25 pm

    “Could he have done more about terrorism? Absolutely. But he foiled the LAX plot on New Year’s Eve and there were no more attacks on WTC until 2001.”

    Such high standards you have for Mr Clinton. I beleive a customs agent at the Canadian border was responsible for stopping the LAX bombing. Thanks for keeping it real Dave.

  37. Anonymous
    June 5, 2007 at 1:27 pm

    Dave: How can you say “he” foiled the LAX plot and not give W any credit for the fact that we are coming up on the sixth anniversary of no terrorist attacks on US soil since 9-11? That level of compartmentalization between the two men is mindboggling to me. The LAX plot was foiled by a observant customs agent on the Canadian border 2000 miles away from D.C. Bill Clinton was not a factor at all in the foiling of the plot; he just got lucky that some functionary somewhere waaaaayyyy down the food chain from him made a really good hire the day customs hired that agent. Conversely, W is actively pursuing al Qaida anywhere and everywhere for what they did on 9-11 and he get no credit for hobbling them and keeping them from attacking again. What gives?

  38. rep (D) william jefferson
    June 5, 2007 at 2:51 pm

    Help me Nancy!

  39. Anonymous
    June 5, 2007 at 2:59 pm

    Don’t tell Nancy or Harry

    Democrats Lose Their Edge.
    ABC News Poll Shows Congressional Approval Ratings Have Returned to Pre-Election Levels.

  40. Brett
    June 5, 2007 at 11:38 pm

    “Conversely, W is actively pursuing al Qaida anywhere and everywhere for what they did on 9-11 and he get no credit for hobbling them and keeping them from attacking again. What gives?”

    Hobbling?. Do you read or listen to any news sources other than Limbaugh, Hannity, or O’Reilly?.

    Why is it that Bush supporters turn a blind eye toward the fact that the terrorist attack on 9-11 took place under his watch?.

  41. Steve
    June 6, 2007 at 12:30 am

    To pin 9/11 on Jimmy Bush might be a reach Brett

  42. Anonymous
    June 6, 2007 at 1:08 am

    Right Brett! Bush is responsible for 911! That’s why we democrats back in the white house!
    Forget that the clinton’s lied under oath! we all lie!
    Forget that the black congressman put $90,000 in his freezer! we would all do the same!
    It’s all Bush’s fault! Everything is his fault! He is a dummy and a jerk and he needs to stop killing our soldiers and our muslim brothers and sisters!
    stop the war…elect all democrats…raise taxes only on the rich republicans, and let’s get back to who Bubba is doing in the whitehouse while Hillary is is going through menopause with class and style!
    It’s our turn to dominate politcs again…and bring america back to her state of greatness under the leadership of Bill…even if hillary is the president! who cares! Bill will be back!
    Bill did stop the LAX bombing! he was doing a female imformant and using natural tactics to get the info…not torture like Bush!
    We need to start using sex and drugs to get our info again…Bubba did great at it for 8 years…we need him for 8 more!
    Blog on slo bloggers! we will win again…we need to! we have to! dang it! it’s our turn!

  43. Paul
    June 6, 2007 at 1:28 am

    I’ve got a great line up suggestion for your show:
    1st hour-S.M.Bill
    2nd hour-Code Pink
    3rd hour-The Pet Psychic
    Then you can spend the last hour taking calls from Bigfoot Experts and UFO Abductees.

  44. lefty the loon
    June 6, 2007 at 1:48 am

    hi Don,
    great job
    thanks for hating america
    i hate america too
    great call

  45. Anonymous
    June 6, 2007 at 5:21 am

    Brett, Brett, Brett. How many times do we have to go over this? The 9-11 hijackers waltzed (or maybe foxtrotted) into the United States in January 2000, a year and a half before September 11th. That, in case you are really this dense, was under Bill Clinton’s watch. All you freakin’ liberals want time to begin on innaugaration day 2001. The Bush Administration didn’t actually get up and running until July thanks to that loser ALGORE not conceding the election and the GSA holding up the Bush transition team, blah, blah, blah. So Bush and his team had two months to find 19 (or 20 ) hijackers that had been living in the United States for one full year under Bill Clinton’s watch… but it is George Bush’s fault, right? Do you, Brett, listen to anything other than Michael Moore, Airhead America and Ben Affleck? I bet you can recite lines from Fehrenheit 9/11.

  46. Dave Congalton
    June 6, 2007 at 5:45 am

    The Clinton administration was successful in stopping the ’99 attack on LAX and the Seattle Space Needle. Juan Cole picks up our story:

    “The story of how the LAX bombing was stopped on December 14 has been told in an important series in the Seattle Times. Extra security measures were implemented by US customs agents, leading to the apprehension of an Algerian, Ahmed Ressam, with a trunk full of nitroglycerin, heading for LAX (he wanted to start his journey by ferry from Port Angeles, Washington).

    What Richard Clarke’s book reveals is that the way Ressam was shaken out at Port Angeles by customs agent Diana Dean was not an accident. Rather, Clinton had made Clarke a cabinet member. He was given the authority to call other key cabinet members and security officials to “battle stations,” involving heightened alerts in their bureaucracies and daily meetings. Clarke did this with Clinton’s approval in December of 1999 because of increased chatter and because the Jordanians caught a break when they cracked Raed al-Hijazi’s cell in Amman.

    Early in 2001, in contrast, Bush demoted Clarke from being a cabinet member, and much reduced his authority. Clarke wanted the high Bush officials or “principals” to meet on terrorism regularly. He couldn’t get them to do it. Rice knew what al-Qaeda was, but she, like other administration officials, was disconcerted by Clarke’s focus on it as an independent actor. The Bush group-think holds that asymmetrical organizations are not a threat in themselves, that the threat comes from the states that allegedly harbor them. That funny look she gave Clarke wasn’t unfamiliarity, it was puzzlement that someone so high in the system should be so wrongly focused.

    In summer of 2001 the chatter was much greater and more ominous than in fall of 1999. Clarke wanted to go to battle stations and have daily meetings with the “principals” (i.e. Rumsfeld, Ashcroft, Powell, Tenet). He wanted to repeat the procedures that had foiled the Millennium Plot. He could not convince anyone to let him do that.

  47. Brett
    June 6, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    “Right Brett! Bush is responsible for 911! That’s why we democrats back in the white house!
    Forget that the clinton’s lied under oath! we all lie!”

    Do you have any critical thinking skills at all?.

    Did I say Bush was responsible for 9-11. No, I didn’t. The argument that America would be safer if a Republican were in the White House flies in the face of the fact that 9-11 occurred while a Republican was in the White House.

    The right-wing thought process that likes to equate Bill Clinton lying about a sexual relationship in a civil case to George Bush lying to the American public in order to attack Iraq continues to amaze me.

    “Do you, Brett, listen to anything other than Michael Moore, Airhead America and Ben Affleck? I bet you can recite lines from Fehrenheit 9/11.”

    In fact I’ve never seen Fehrenheit 9/11, I do listen to Stephanie Miller in the morning (sorry King), and I couldn’t tell you what Ben Affleck has been saying.

    I do watch PBS, read the L.A.Times, other major papers via the internet, news from Reuters, AP, etc.

  48. Anonymous
    June 6, 2007 at 4:55 pm

    Well, then by your rationale the Bush Administration has stopped every attempted and plotted attack on American soil and Bush properly gets credit for those actions. Thank you Dave for conceding that Bush has in fact kept America safe from terrorists. Now please go tell your Democrat candidates that fact.

  49. Juan Cole
    June 6, 2007 at 5:22 pm

    Thanks for giving a left wing blogger credibility Dave.

  50. Marilyn
  51. democrats, liberals, illegals and criminals
    June 7, 2007 at 12:02 am

    Open the borders and take the Americans guns away. We know what’s best. Thank you

  52. Anonymous
    June 7, 2007 at 2:03 am

    If Brett hates Bush then Brett rocks!
    Keep on blogging Brett! We will win one day and these slimeball rich christian republicans will be thrown in jail!
    Bubba rocks too! So what he lied…so what he skull banged a fat civil servant in the white house…so what! We’d all like to that at least once! so what thta hillary is a lesbian! Live and let live!
    we all need to help support our friend Hugo Chaves! I wish we could shut down Fox nes and rush and the lot! Good for you Hugo!
    We need to leave Iraq now! surrender to our muslim friends and admit our mistakes! Then we can build a bridge of friendship with the muslim world…so what if a few thousand die in that process! We need to embrace them!
    Blog on slo bloggers! Give it right back to these republican neocons!
    we love all diversity! we love all peoples! we love all religeons and we all love sex! if a baby happens…abort it! it our right!
    the dems plan for the world is perfect and flawless!
    we love this blog dave!

  53. Bob from San Luis
    June 7, 2007 at 4:34 am

    Anonymouses: So any criticism of President Bush is hating him, but when all of the Republicans were (or still are) screaming about how evil and bad Clinton was, they weren’t “hating” him? Can I call all of you “Clinton haters“? Or would you consider that redundant? See if you can follow the logic trail here; I voted for Bill Clinton twice and I think he accomplished a few good things for our country, and I was very disappointed with several of his actions, not the least of which was his adultery, which is not an impeachable offense. His reputation and legacy was severely tarnished by his personal behavior; I still respect him for his intelligence and political acumen. Do I like him or hate him? Irrelevant. President Bush; I did not vote for him either election, I respect the office that he holds and if I should ever meet him I would not disrespect him. I do not agree with most everything he has done while in office and my feelings for him as a person is irrelevant as my opinion of Bill Clinton is. One action that President Bush took that I completely agreed with was his freezing of the assets of the Afghan leaders and Taliban leaders that were in the United States after 9/11. Most of his other reactions to the attacks of 9/11 I think were the wrong course of action. And somehow that makes me a “Bush hater” ? I disagree, but that will be meaningless to the “anonymouses” commenting here, I am sure.
    As for the topic of this thread, “Republicans Need to Save Their Party”, curious how many of the Republican Presidential candidates are going to great pains to separate themselves from President Bush. Are they trying to “save” their party?

  54. Brett
    June 7, 2007 at 6:14 pm

    “If Brett hates Bush then Brett rocks!”

    Hmmm, I don’t recall ever saying I hated President Bush. I think he is a dolt. Much like the folks that follow him blindly believing every word he says.

    (The ghost of Jerry lives on.)

  55. Code Stink
    June 7, 2007 at 7:21 pm

    you just hate jerry.come clean brett,we still luv ya

  56. Brett
    June 7, 2007 at 11:39 pm

    “you just hate jerry.come clean brett,we still luv ya”

    I don’t hate Jerry. I think he is a Piece of Sh….t.

  57. LB
    June 8, 2007 at 2:02 am


    our we fighting al queda in iraq?
    i think so
    who cares if we fight them in afganistan or iraq or anywhere
    what hoot the old vet is 🙂

  58. Hoosier21
    June 8, 2007 at 2:29 pm

    Where to start? I guess from the bottom up. Marilyn, we still have over a hundred thousand troops in Germany, Italy and Japan over 60 years after WWII. I don’t see a problem in having a presence in Iraq after the majority pulls out. As to your link, let’s look on the bright side. Over a hundred years ago, the largest potential oil reserve in the world was discovered in continental United States. Over two trillion barrels of oil and possibly up to 20 trillion. This would be more than all known oil reserves in the world. The problem is that it is oil shale. How to get it out of the rocks economically? Many attempts have been made. But, in 2005, Bush signed a bill that allowed companies to get money to develop means of doing this. Hundreds of test wells have been drilled and different methods applied (requires heat and companies do not want to divulge their method). They even have used military weapons (infrared) to heat and extract. Of course, conductivity between metals (probably silver) is another method. Point is, we are soon going to have enough oil for generations to come. The outlook is so positive; I have even bought stock in some of the companies. Just Google oil shale. The point of this is: we (USA) would have no vital interest in the Middle East any more. Creating thousands of good jobs and not being held over a barrel anymore (pun intended). Put this with more green nuclear plants and the USA is self sufficient for hundreds of years.

    Millennium terror plot had nothing to do with Clarke or heightened security. Here is her testimony. Nothing she doesn’t do every day of the week.

    Prepared Statement


    Diana Dean

    United States Customs Inspector
    Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee, thank you for inviting me here to testify today. My name is Diana Dean. I am a United States Customs Inspector with 19 years experience. I am currently assigned to Port Angeles, Washington, and have been there since 1991. Prior to my assignment at Port Angeles I worked as an Inspector in both Seattle and Hawaii.
    On December 14, 1999, at 6:00 PM, Ahmed Ressam attempted to enter the United States from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, in a rented vehicle aboard the ferry motor vessel Coho at the Port Angeles, Washington, port of entry. As the primary interviewing officer, I noticed during routine questioning that Ressam was acting in a nervous and strange manner while answering routine questions. I decided to perform a more thorough secondary examination.
    Ressam was told to exit the vehicle he was driving in order to open the trunk for examination. After several requests, Ressam reluctantly exited the vehicle and opened the trunk. Preliminary examination by additional inspectors present and myself revealed that the vehicles’ spare tire compartment contained several bags of an unknown substance.
    Based upon this discovery, an immediate pat down of Ressam was conducted during which Ressam managed to slip out of his jacket and flee on foot. The other inspectors present gave chase in a foot race that ensued over a five-block area resulting in Ressam’s capture. During the foot chase, Ressam attempted to strong-arm the driver of a vehicle passing by. After a brief scuffle, the subject was cuffed and escorted back to the port.
    Further examination of Ressam’s vehicle resulted in the discovery of four timing devices and a total of 118 pounds of urea crystals, 14 pounds of sulfate powder, and 48 ounces of nitro-glycerin.
    The fact is U.S. Customs Inspectors do things like this every hour of the day, every day of the week, every week of the year, at all 301 ports of entry in our nation. Some times we interdict dangerous drugs, sometimes guns, contaminated food, defective parts, the list goes on.
    I want to again thank the committee for the opportunity to be here today.

  59. juan cole
    June 8, 2007 at 4:51 pm

    Thanks for setting the record straight. Clinton was to busy perjuring himself to give a crap about terrorism. BTW Scooter Libby is going to prison for the same thing Clinton was impeached for.
    Thanks for disproving my fairy tale Dave tried to slip by you all.

  60. NewsstandGreg
    June 9, 2007 at 4:49 pm

    Reading this entire thread of comments, one would conclude that if Republicans need to save their party, no right-of-center commenter has a constructive suggestions whatsoever!

    Lots of Clinton v Bush rehashing, throwing the nearly useless labels of “liberal” and “Bush haters” instead of actual, rational thoughtful suggestions.

    Perhaps the Republican “brand” is in more trouble than these people will admit. –Newsstand Greg

  61. Anonymous
    June 9, 2007 at 8:33 pm

    blah blah blah! You libs got the senate and the house and now rating are way below Bush’s…
    Wake up! You’re taost in 2008! The nation will never elect a lesbian or a half breed muslim!
    Sorry…truth hurts

  62. Steve
    June 9, 2007 at 11:05 pm

    Hillary Appoints Alcee Hastings (Frmr. Fed. Judge Impeached for Bribery) as Campaign Co-Chair.
    William “Coldcash” Jefferson must be jealous.

  63. Anonymous
    June 18, 2007 at 3:00 pm


    Before you accuse President Bush of killing 3,500 of our citizen you might want to count the number killed during President Clinton’s era. Then when you are finished include the 3,000 killed on 9/11. Remember 9/11 was only 8 months into the Bush years. Clinton had 8 years to prevent it and did nothing except depleat our military by closing bases and depots.

  64. the ghost of christmas past
    June 30, 2007 at 3:06 am

    Democrats need to save their party and Harry Reid needs to be working on saving his job. Reid is the one that tanked the immigration amnesty bill with his inability to get all 50 Democrat senators to go along with the bill. And with all 115 Rebulican congressmen standing together in the House, this bill would never have reached Bush. The Democrat “leadership” demonstrates anything but leadership. The only bill this congress has enacted into law was the minimum wage increase…that was attached to the $100 billion Fund the Troops Iraq (along with $25 billion in congressmen bribes) bill. I spell “incompetence” R-E-I-D with the synonym P-E-L-O-S-I.

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