Walter Russell Mead:
But beyond all the yapping and the buzzing about gun control, the Confederate flag, and whether Dylann Roof was a terrorist or not, a very powerful truth emerged from the horror in Charleston: that the African-American church remains one of America’s great national blessings. Yet again the African American church in the United States bore steadfast witness to the boundless, the infinite, the compassionate love of God. When the families of the murdered, martyred saints told Dylann Roof that they forgave him, when they prayed that he in his darkness might somehow find the light and the love of God, they reminded us what heroism truly is, and they showed us all what it means to follow Jesus Christ.
Continue reading Quote of the Day, Wherein I Ruin A Moment With a Crass Partisan Observation edition.
A United Nations fact finder surveying the lives of Native Americans and Alaska Natives said Friday he’ll recommend in an upcoming report that some of the tribes’ lands be restored, including the Black Hills of South Dakota.
Funny about that: a RedState/MoeLane fact-finder surveying the lives of American citizens (which include Native Americans and Alaska Natives*) wrote today that he’ll recommend right now that UN Headquarters in NYC be evacuated** and the building be reduced to rubble via multiple artillery strikes. Guess which is more likely to happen? Continue reading #rsrh UN wants us to give Mt. Rushmore back to the Sioux!
(H/T Instapundit) Walter Russell Mead’s wincing again:
Wall Street Bankers To Occupy Salt Lake City
The news that many evil bankers are fleeing New York City, pink slips in hand, will surely cheer the Occupy Wall Street crowd . But Salt Lake City has even more reason to be happy about this turn of events.
And I feel bad for the guy. Legitimately. Mead’s taking a bit long on his personal Vision Quest from liberal to conservative (while being surprised about how little actual changes have to be made in one’s opinions and policy opinions*), but everybody’s got a different Vision Quest. I imagine it must distress him to see how the Democrats simply refuse to admit that there are flaws – easily fixed ones – in the urban blue model that is making corporations amenable to voting with their feet**…
*I’m given to understand that it doesn’t work like that when you go the other way from conservative to liberal. Certainly I’ve noticed (speaking from personal experience) that it’s a heck of a lot easier to be a conservative heretic than it is to be a liberal one.
**At some point some ostensibly-bright Democrat is going to try to come up with a scheme of punitive relocation fees in order to try to keep the corporations’ tax revenues – and the corporations themselves, I suppose – in one state. The fallout to that should be entertaining to watch.
…he wrote a typically good essay here that won’t move the needle one bit. Let me be blunt: as long as the Democratic party’s liberal leadership (“blue liberal,” to use Mead’s phrase) thinks that “making a deal” is semantically equivalent to “getting what they want and not calling Republicans sexist racist homophobes to their faces,” then there will be no more grand compromises. As for the two party’s respective activist bases… well, they hate us, and we despise them; and while I personally may or may not regret the tone of politics these days neither am I going to be a damned fool about it.
But if the Democrats want to run another couple of states into the ground before they want to admit that their current media/political strategy isn’t working, fine. It’s not like I can stop them anyway.
Walter Russell Mead, killjoy:
Unless you are a political operative or somebody angling to get an appointment in the next Republican administration, you could safely ignore every word written about the GOP contest up until this point without being any less well informed about the important things going on in the country and the world.
I say that without heat, by the way: speaking as a political operative – actually, I am offended by that term. I am a partisan hack, damn your eyes* – I’ll be one of the first to admit that the primary season goes on for far, far, far too long. But it’s how we set things up, and people seem to be happy to keep doing it this way… while all the time complaining bitterly about having to keep doing it this way. Whaddya going to do, cry in your beer?
*You’d be amazed how empowering it is to be free to say that. I know far too many people in this business who simply can’t admit that, even to themselves. And it keeps them down.
Walter Russell Mead, on our British cousins:
One of the central dynamics that made Britain great for so long still seems to be working. Financial and economic crises recur in healthy capitalist economies. When these crises come, some countries that have only reluctantly embraced a capitalist system (and usually done so poorly and half heartedly), see the crisis as proof that capitalism is a flop, and lurch toward “alternative models” that generally lead to stagnation and the capture of the state by rent-seeking elites spouting empty populist slogans. Think Argentina. Think Greece.
Think the Obama administration… sorry, didn’t mean to interrupt.
Britain is one of the countries that historically responds to crises of capitalism by doubling down: seeking reforms that make capitalism work more effectively rather than trying to hobble and block it.
Hmm. Maybe I did mean to interrupt.
(Via Instapundit) It’s kind of nice, that Mead can still believe that such a thing could happen:
President Obama and Vice President Biden must be deeply grateful that President Bush ignored his critics and went ahead with the surge; if they want to reduce the partisan polarization in Washington they could perhaps say something about it as our troops come home.
Completely impossible, of course: far too many progressives have based their moral center around a reflexive and habitual opposition to the liberation of Iraq and Afghanistan for the President to dare risk telling them the truth. For that matter, said opposition will make it equally impossible for the President to “make a peace,” as Mead’s article proposes. The antiwar Left has never thought of Iraqis as being really people, you understand; and now that Iraq can no longer be used to target Republicans there’s simply no reason for progressives to care about what happens in that country. The best that Iraqis can hope for at this stage is benign neglect.
PS: I feel forced to note that Mead seems to think that the Bush administration ‘botched’ the administration. I also feel forced to reply: ‘botched’ as compared to what? I hate to break it to modern America, but the Iraq War wasn’t our bloodiest. It wasn’t even our bloodiest occupation, frankly. Pride: it really is an insidious sin…
…I’m perfectly down with not letting Commies hold teaching jobs. After all, we make it really difficult for avowed Nazis to be avowed Nazis in this country, and nobody seems to mind – and they’re certainly just as vile as your average Commie. Given the sheer number of people that were killed in the Twentieth Century by Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist-Maoists, I think that the Republic can survive reviving the tradition of Better Dead Than Red.
Other than that? Fairly good article pooh-poohing the so-called ‘Christianist’ (rolling eyes) menace that keeps the more excitable (and easily scared) netrooters awake at night, and listening for Evangelicals under the bed. Although I’d also like to point out for the record that, during the time period that you were writing about, a good deal of that prejudice that you pointed out was firmly enshrined in the Democratic party. Which has done a piss-poor job at repenting for it, by the way.
Continue reading #rsrh For the record, Walter Russell Mead…
Walter Russell Mead, while in the process of idly kicking around feckless radical environmentalists:
Snail darters beware: green political cluelessness is about to rock your world.
The context – although it’s plenty good without it, really – is that Mead (who is almost certainly fibbing when he says ” I don’t actually enjoy tweaking the greens*”) is commenting on the quote-unquote ‘strategy’ of the professional environmental movement. Said strategy? Finding as many different ways as possible to have the excuse to line up in a row, scream “Bonsai!,**” and charge. Continue reading #rsrh QotD, EVERYBODY Hates The Greens Edition.
Walter Russell Mead makes a statement of despair:
But EJ [Dionne] is definitely right about one thing: right or wrong, win or lose, when it comes to economic policy the President has no choice but to lead from his gut and speak from his heart.
It’s a statement of despair for a terrifying reason*; there’s absolutely no evidence that the President knows how to do either.
*Not just for Democrats, actually.