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Does the GOP have a plan?

May 24, 2010

I didn’t follow the PA-12 race all that closely so I don’t know if what David Frum is saying is true, but if it is it echoes what I have been saying for months, justing saying no isn’t going to cut it – The GOP needs a positive message and agenda to go along with the anti-everything Obama proposes platform.

Here is something for Republicans to consider:

Normally, challengers do not bother to develop much of a positive message in a recession year. “Things are awful — they’re in charge — vote for us” usually does the job.

But here’s the problem that Burns encountered:

In a historically Democratic district like PA-12, the kind of district that Republicans have to gain, the absence of a positive message leaves a door open to negative attacks.

Critz accused Burns of wishing to “privatize” Medicare and Social Security and “outsource” Pennsylvania jobs. Not true, said FactCheck.org. But politics abhors a vacuum, and with Burns refraining from specifying any agenda for himself, Critz specified his agenda for him.

Critz got away with it in large part because angry memories of George W. Bush and the congressional Republicans remain fresh. That represents a big difference between 2010 and 1994.

Little as they like Obama and the Democrats, the voters in PA-12 have not yet forgiven the Bush Republicans.

Running on a platforms like “End the Fed” and “The Civil Rights Act is unconstitutional and people should be allowed to deny service to blacks solely because they are black” are not going to win races. Granted we are not Kentucky voters but all my friends now think that Rand Paul is (and this is pretty much a direct quote) “A racist shithead.” When I told them he clarified his remarks the response was on the order of, “Of course he did, he’s losing now.” Anecdotal, unscientific and meaningless but there it is.

I have to go to a conference call, I will update in about an hour.

-elsewhere-

I have a problem with people who have a problem with a mosque near ground zero. The Other McCain has an ad by Rick Barber who is a GOP candidate for Congress, in which he equates Islam and Islamic terrorism and calls the mosque unacceptable. I don’t accept the idea of jihadism or any form of Islamic terrorism, but I also reject the idea that other people have the right to tell me what, who, where, and when to worship.

Cynthia Yockey has some problems with Rand Paul too.

All I can say on this is “Screw China” – China Presses US to End Tech Export Controls

Why the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was necessary

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. xbradtc permalink
    May 24, 2010 9:03 am

    Let’s see, a historically Dem district, with the predecessor’s anointed successor running, in a district where Dem affiliation outnumbers GOP 2-to-1, and the Dem candidate had to run on a platform further to the right then the last GOP candidate for President, and the GOP still got within 8 points. I’ll admit, I’d hoped it would have been closer, but PA-12 was never on my pick-up list.

    • jenn1964 permalink*
      May 24, 2010 10:45 am

      I didn’t really expect the pick-up either but a lot of people did.

      • xbradtc permalink
        May 24, 2010 11:08 am

        I’m not disagreeing with the central thesis that the GOP has to have an agenda and a plan to offer in lieu of the Dems. If the GOP wants the House, they have to earn it.

        But Frum has been leaning so “moderate” that I find it very difficult to give credence to anything he says.

  2. May 24, 2010 12:56 pm

    The fact is that you don’t need anybody to equate Islam with Islamic terrorism. Islam does that itself. Five years of Islam Studies, 4 undergrad and 1 grad so far, have really only confirmed that for me. Read the Qur’an. Spend a lot of time at an area mosque, and with Muslims from the Middle East, Central Asia, or Indonesia. Pay a visit to Northern India to study abroad. I’ve done these things, which again, reinforced what I’ve learned. Moderate Islam is a western invention, and not a particularly common one at that. We all know “moderate” Muslims; most Muslims consider them bad examples at best, apostates at worst. They’re technically not even supposed to be here in Dar al-kafr, the house of the infidel. Muslims are supposed to live in the dar al-Islam. Even the most peaceful members of CAIR have admitted to wanting Sharia law implemented here in America down the road, as part and parcel to that. http://www.wnd.com/?pageId=113704

    I know you have a problem with social conservatives. Islam is the real so-con threat.

    As far as the legality of the mosque at ground zero, no, I don’t support any kind of injunction to prevent it. But you have to admit, it’s in damned, damned poor taste, like erecting a statue of Godfrey of Bouillon in the middle of the Muslim quarter in Jerusalem. To me, it only illustrates my above points even more clearly.

    No, Islam itself should not, and cannot, be banned or anything like that. But people need to acknowledge that a large part of Islamic expansionist theory involves using political processes to implement elements of Sharia, after which Islam becomes an obvious end point. These are things that people need to watch out for. You may think it can’t happen, but given the stagnancy and complacency of Western culture, and the vibrancy and sense of urgency in the Islamic world, I think it’s pretty much an historical inevitability. Shit, look at Europe.

    “Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on earth.”–Omar Ahmad, Chairman of CAIR

  3. jenn1964 permalink*
    May 24, 2010 2:08 pm

    Well I will have to defer to your expertise. Mine is limited to the time I spent in Turkey and the Persian Gulf way back in the 80’s. That and the Muslims I knew in the Navy, and in the Seattle area. I have started the Qur’an a couple of times but like the Bible the language is very hard for me to read through.

    This just my opinion of course but World Net Daily probably isn’t the best source to quote, especially when it undermines your point.

    But Muslims such as Steven Schwartz, a prominent American convert to Islam and ardent critic of Muslim fundamentalism, contend Dalia Mogahed, a scheduled speaker at the annual fundraiser Saturday in Washington for the controversial Council on American-Islamic Relations, certainly doesn’t speak for them.

    (…)

    Pointing to her views expressed to a church leader writing in Christian Century magazine, Schwartz says that “while Muslims around the world are increasingly turning toward civil society, Dalia Mogahed offers the retrograde fantasy of Shariah as liberating, even as comparable with the principles of the Declaration of Independence.”

    So there are at least some Muslims who consider themselves observant and moderate.

  4. May 24, 2010 5:03 pm

    I don’t know. I guess you could say it undermines my point. I don’t think it does. As you yourself say, “consider themselves observant and moderate”. That doesn’t mean much when you’re banging your head against a thousand-year old wall of tradition that is pretty much always translated into modern reality. There are people that self-identify as Muslims, much like Fred Phelps self-identifies as Christian. Neither religion’s mainstream supports or identifies those individuals as such.

    It’s like the thing with Rima Fakih. She may very well consider herself to be a Muslim, but that doesn’t mean much when most Middle Eastern Muslims disagree on that point. A perfect example would be the Ahmadiyya sect, the most outspoken-against-jihad group of Muslims in the world. Neither Shi’a nor Sunni consider Ahmadiyyas to be Muslims. When you’re talking about a belief system as monolithic as Islam, it’s just hard to ignore that factor.

    That’s why I felt the WND source (I’m not a huge fan of theirs, by the way, but good luck finding anything remotely factual on modern Islam in the MSM) served the purpose. Small numbers of people that self-identify as Muslim come out of the woodwork to decry jihad and the implementation of sharia law, and yet the four main schools of Islamic jurisprudence, the sunna of Mohammed, and the Qur’an itself, make no exceptions on these points. Groups like CAIR openly hold these viewpoints, like MeCHA or the Klan. The Qur’an is an overtly violent, sexist, discriminatory manual on how to build an empire, which is exactly what happened in Mohammed’s twilight years and for centuries after his death. The only reason Islam stopped attacking the west was because they became too weak and destitute to continue, mostly due to their amish-like aversion to modernity.

    There’s a reason why when C.S. Lewis compiled his Golden Rule theory, he found examples in every major religion’s “playbook”, except for the Qur’an. It’s not an accident and he didn’t overlook anything. The book literally tells you that only Muslims are worthy of even basic human compassion.

    Essentially, the moderates of Islam are those who have decided that Islam doesn’t really mean what it says. I don’t begrudge them that right, but certainly, it is an uphill battle to fight, particularly when the group consensus happens to tilt towards “strict constructionism”, as it were, and since interpretation of Muslim texts was officially closed at the end of the 12th century, and those interpretations advocated violence as a pathway to making Islam supreme.. these are just the facts.

    Qur’an 9:005: So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

    You can find violent verses in the Old Testament, but those were directed towards groups that no longer exist in very specific situations. The Qur’an, I’ll give it, it’s timeless.

    Qur’an 4:089: They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all) alike; therefore take not from among them friends until they fly (their homes) in Allah’s way; but if they turn back, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them, and take not from among them a friend or a helper.

    Sorry for the long reply, I just despise the idea of cultural relativity, and Islam is as much a culture as it is a religion. No “render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s” in Islam.

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