Thursday, October 29, 2009

Is Rush Reading Fr. H.?

On October 20, in comments to this post, Fr. Hollywood wrote:
"For they [the Republican Party] would rather have a liberal Republican at the helm of California than a conservative non-Republican, or a liberal who does not have the GOP Party label.

The GOP's mission is not conservatism. Its mission is the GOP - whether liberal, conservative, or moderate. More accurately, its mission is victory for the party - and there seems to be no limit to the cost. The same is true with the Democrat Party.

The party labels are just that: labels....

In fact, I believe you will see the [Republican] party push for a 'bigger tent.' There are already voices within the party calling for a 'broader base.' In the aftermath of the 2008 trouncing, I do think 'strategists' will move the party further to the left. I hope I'm wrong about this.

The GOP leadership will drop the 'Christian right' like ballast if (and when) the pundits determine they are an impediment to victory....

I don't think the GOP has been conservative since Goldwater. The Republican Party is too pragmatic and leftist. I believe we have two moderate parties that both favor big government and believe in working around the constitution.

I just don't find the two majors to be very different from one another at all."

My dear friend and colleague, loyal Republican and Rush Limbaugh listener "Peter," wasn't too happy with my remarks. However, one week later to the very day, Rush Limbaugh said:

"They have a death wish. The Republican Party has a death wish. Gallup: 40 percent of Americans now say they are conservative, 20 percent say they're liberal, 36 percent say they're moderates. And of those three groups, which one is being ignored – not just ignored – which one is being attacked by the Republican Party? The conservatives!
It's worse than I thought. I thought this was just based on elitism and northeast moderate liberalism, and embarrassment of the people that the social issues attract to the party. But now it's just plain stupidity...

The Republican Party, as constituted is as dangerous to this country as the Democrat Party is. 'But Rush, party loyalty is party loyalty, and the local Republican committee up there has endorsed [left-wing Republican] Scozzafava.' So? I'm saying the two parties are the same. I guess I need to amend it a little bit, but, man, when I saw that they were running ads, as I say, ruined two hours of my day."

Is Rush Limbaugh secretly reading Father Hollywood and saying "Mega-dittoes"? If so, I want to encourage Rush to keep reading, and while he's poring over his advanced gnesio- and paleo-conservative studies, he should also go after some truly free-market economics from the Austrian School, and learn what real constitutional conservatism is. And considering that he does hail from Missouri, maybe Rush could even be influenced to become a Traditionalist Lutheran and pay for that seminary library they're building in Fort Wayne with a single swipe of the debit card.

I'll bet Dr. Wenthe could finally get that espresso bar...


Peter said...

Rush has been saying such things for years, especially when frustrated (Bush Sr.'s tax hike, Bush Jr.'s medicaid plan, McCain's you-name-it). He's never been a "Party-First" kind of guy. He's never been your kind of conservative, that is a Lou Rockwellian, but, as far as I can tell, he's always been a conservative first, entertainer second, and Republican third.

Father Hollywood said...

Dear Peter:

I used to listen to him, and found him to have become quite a lapdog during Bush, Sr.'s term (when he was being invited to to sleep in the White House and hob-nob with all the party bosses). He did back off somewhat under GWB as the GOP continued its leftward slide.

But I sure agree with you that the GOP has been flagging in its conservatism since at least the time of George Bush, Sr. Of course, it was Nixon who went beyond Obama in Socialism by actually fixing wages and prices, but I think few Americans remember it.

But we may yet see a conservative party emerge at some point, though parties inevitably become machines, run by professional apparatchiks, devoted to winning elections regardless of their initial ideology.

"Meet the new boss,..."

Past Elder said...

I was a convert to Reagan Republicanism. When and where I grew up, Republicans were WASPS who were OK if you got something as long as it didn't come from or equal theirs. In the words of the title of a book at the time, A Choice Not An Echo, it had absolutely nothing to do with political beliefs, and theirs were simply an echo OK But Not So Far to the Democrats, the party of everybody but WASPS.

After the Reagan Era, I sought to become active in local Republican party stuff, but was quickly dissuaded when, noticing the decidedly non-conservative stances of some of our candidates, mentioned that to an old hand, and I was told Look, parties exist for one reason only, to win elections.

Maybe that's why, speaking of what is and is not in the Constitution, there is nothing whatever about political parties in there.

Anonymous said...

I second Peter.

And, actually, it's not only Rush who doesn't like these moves to the left. It's also Hannity and Beck. These guys are annoying, but they are not party hacks.

Why else do you think the left hates conservative talk radio? They don't hate John McCain. But, they do hate Rush.

Father Hollywood said...


I have yet to hear one of these talk show hosts advise anyone not to vote Republican. They may gripe somewhat, but they will advise us to "hold our nose and pull the R-level."

This falls right into place with the professional GOP that exists solely to win elections for the party.

And perhaps the Republican Party's taking the "Christian Right" and constitutional conservatives for granted may be because of this complacency and relative lack of criticism of the GOP.

Can you imagine the impact if Limbaugh were to urge his listeners to a moritorium on voting for any Republicans and from sending any of them a dime unless and until they repudiate "pro-choice Republicans" and those who advocate using the state to mandate what color to paint one's cars?

That would be a tsunami.

But none of these guys will do that. In the final analysis, their minimal gripes just make for entertaining radio (especially Mark Levin with his profane WWE-like ranting and raving, funny stuff!), but that's what these people are: entertainers.

If they don't get ratings, their shows go down the toilet. There is nothing wrong with entertainment, but there are a lot of conservatives whose entire diet of political thought comes from talk radio. I know, because I get all the ridiculous e-mails from them.

I do hope the next generation of conservatives are thinkers.

Dave Lambert said...

It's nice to find another Confessional Lutheran who also is supportive of Austrian Economics!