Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘welch’

I exaggerate not a bit when I describe the prevailing politics of L.A. to be roughly as follows: Wal-Mart and big box stores = evil, and need to be stopped at all costs. Also, we need more cheap supermarkets! Mom and pop stores need to be defended from Big Corporations, unless they sell fried chicken or used tires, or get in the way of a big development project.

 — Matt Welch, writing about his experience of dealing with Los Angeles “stakeholders” during his two-year tenure at the L.A. Times.

I highly recommend the whole article.

Read Full Post »

John McCain gave a speech today where he said:

We both knew the politically safe choice was to support some form of retreat. All the polls said the “surge” was unpopular. Many pundits, experts and policymakers opposed it and advocated withdrawing our troops and accepting the consequences. I chose to support the new counterinsurgency strategy backed by additional troops − which I had advocated since 2003, after my first trip to Iraq. Many observers said my position would end my hopes of becoming president. I said I would rather lose a campaign than see America lose a war. My choice was not smart politics. It didn’t test well in focus groups. It ignored all the polls. It also didn’t matter. The country I love had one final chance to succeed in Iraq. The new strategy was it. So I supported it. […]

Senator Obama made a different choice. He not only opposed the new strategy, but actually tried to prevent us from implementing it. He didn’t just advocate defeat, he tried to legislate it. When his efforts failed, he continued to predict the failure of our troops. As our soldiers and Marines prepared to move into Baghdad neighborhoods and Anbari villages, Senator Obama predicted that their efforts would make the sectarian violence in Iraq worse, not better.

And as our troops took the fight to the enemy, Senator Obama tried to cut off funding for them. He was one of only 14 senators to vote against the emergency funding in May 2007 that supported our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. He would choose to lose in Iraq in hopes of winning in Afghanistan. But had his position been adopted, we would have lost both wars.

Reacting to this, Matt Welch (editor of Reason Magazine) says:

What interests me here is McCain’s classic trait of personalizing all policy debates. If you disagree with him, it must be because you are dishonorable, and placing politics ahead of country. He, on the other hand, continues to be motivated by a love of country more pure than Karen Carpenter’s singing voice, at a severe political cost that only a torture-surviving stoic would be willing to bear.

I think that is an accurate depiction of McCain, and one of the reason I sincerely hope he never becomes president. As Welch adds:

I don’t know about Obama (literally), but I can tell you this: The next time we face what McCain hyperbolically described as “a crisis as profound as any in our history,” President McCain will argue − stoically, and with patriotic sadness more than nationalistic anger − that the only thing he hates more than war is anyone daring to suggest that escalating troop levels yet again isn’t the answer to the transcendental crisis du jour. Will such sentiments work politically in 2008? I don’t know. But it’s likely his only hope.

Read the whole thing.

And incidentally, I am a HUGE fan of Karen Carpenter’s voice and the songs she sang.

Read Full Post »

The current farm bill is a monstrosity. It is a grotesque example of ill-directed subsidy and government profligacy at a time when the US is deep in debt and prices are going up. Only one of the three presidential candidates has come out in opposition to the bill and that person is John McCain. Even Andrew Sullivan — possibly Obama’s greatest champion in the blogosphere —admits this.

Obama’s pandering on this is pathetic. McCain deserves real kudos. And this does matter: standing up to this kind of craven welfarism is important.

Over at Reason, Matt Welch says:

This gives me a rare opportunity to agree wholeheartedly with anti-libertarian New York Times columnist David Brooks: John Sidney McCain is a thousand times better on this than Barack Hussein Obama, and one of the principal virtues of the coming McCain presidency is the prospect of him just vetoing the crap out of lousy legislation produced by emboldened Democrats (who suffer from a singular lack of Jeff Flakes).

Matt, mind you, is no McCain fan. After all, he wrote an entire book and several articles (like this one) to remind us just how frighteningly authoritarian John McCain is. So, while a McCain presidency will be a better than an Obama one on spending, regulation and some other economic issues, it could be terrible for civil liberties. We live in a world of tough choices.

Read Full Post »