PUT THE CHALK DOWN
We feature a series of posts for the People, by PolitiJim, of PolitJim.com – circumspect historical analysis beating knee-jerk reaction, hyperbole, and hysteria.
This is the first, written while Beck was effectively “softening the terrain” just before the massive Romney SuperPAC assaults upon Gingrich’s name in Iowa and Florida.
The second is “Roosevelt Ruse; Refuting Glenn Beck on Newt Gingrich, Part 2.”
12/11/2011 02:06:00 PM PolitiJim
UPDATE: Douglas Stewart and Andrew Breitbart apparently have had enough of Glenn Beck. They too deride him for his “racist” comments to Judge Napolitano and Breitbart how he tried to quash the Pigford scandal throwing Andrew under the bus. Many of us have scratched our heads why Beck has been adamant to cover up Obama’s multiple forgeries and background. Now Stewart and Breitbart documented a serial problem with Beck has in plagiarism. Read the story here.
How did I get sucked into defending Newt Gingrich when I don’t support him (or any other candidate)? I had been reworking an article for days on this ridiculous notion that Gingrich is untrustworthy because of his two affairs over 20 years ago and Rick Perry is the new Mother Theresa. Now that Glenn Beck has proclaimed that Newt Gingrich is essentially a fat, white Barack Obama (and some conservative bloggers I respect have not done their homework and agree with him), you dear reader are the beneficiary of a new blog. (It’s ok, your welcome.) I will explain at the end of the post why Perry’s sins are more egregious than Newt’s although neither should disqualify either of them. But once again, insanity seems to be the new contagion of conservative circles.
What Beck said:
- Since Gingrich said he admired Teddy Roosevelt’s early years, Newt is now wanting one world government and total government control. He is “the same” as Obama.
- Tea Partiers who vote for Gingrich must be racists because they didn’t vote for the “other Progressive meat” called Barack Hussein Obama.
- Newt’s rise in the polls is due to the GOP machine.
Beck has been right on a lot of things including Van Jones, the economic meltdown and the insidious reach of the Soros/Marxist forces in the Obama administration. But not only has he “jumped the shark” as The Right Scoop suggested, he’s buried his bloated ego inflated noggin clear up it’s ….shark butt.
You have to question ANYONE that suggests the “GOP Machine” (who has mercilessly ridiculed and attacked Gingrich since his poll rise let alone his entire career) is behind Newt’s rise in the polls. I’m sorry, did 40% of conservatives who DIDNT vote for the acknowledged GOP party stooge (Romney) somehow miss the secret Karl Rove spies-in-black who came to our homes and brainwashed them to root for Newt from Tacoma to Tampa? How insane is THAT statement? All you have to do is to follow a conservative twitter feed to notice the increased attention and discussion since Palin “unannounced.” This statement PROVES we have to fact check (and rethink) EVERYTHING Beck is selling.
I won’t even acknowledge the idiotic “racist” comment except to say it is pure manipulation. He is trying to get weak minded conservatives (yes there are many) to feel guilty at voting for Gingrich. It’s manipulative. …and LIBERAL! Conservatives lay out facts, and respect the individual to think for themselves. They don’t need to call people names to coerce them to think the way they want.
So let’s talk about 2 things. Teddy Roosevelt’s REAL record and Newt’s ACTUAL voting record and accomplishments.
Teddy was a spoiled rich kid with great academic, military and literary accomplishments including graduating Harvard, attending Columbia law, and becoming Governor of New York and the Assistant Secretary of the Navy. He was one tough bastard and most assuredly, the beginning of bigger government, an expansion of executive branch power and the beginning of government’s role in regulating business.
But guess what? He ran against Woodrow Wilson. That’s right. He was TO THE RIGHT of the WORST progressive (up until Obama) in history. This is important because you HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THE CONTEXT of the times in which he came to power. The population of the US had doubled in 30 years. Immigrants and native born citizens were working in inhumane working conditions in crowded cities incubating rampant disease. There were NO regulations (enforced) on businesses and books like Upton Sinclair’s THE JUNGLE exposed the lack of protection against deceptive products being sold to the public – and for the workers who were nearly treated as slaves or worse. Corruption between business and local law enforcement was unrestrained.
As we know, absolute power corrupts just as easily in Enron as in the EPA. Had businessmen acted responsibly it is unlikely that our national pedigree of liberty would have ever condoned government interference. But people like Sinclair who were avowed socialists (he started the California ACLU) took advantage to urge control over private affairs. THERE HAD BEEN NO HISTORY of government regulation of business up until that time and there really was no track record of whether it worked – or if it might infringe on freedom. But it is an ignorant view to assume ALL of these people were the progressives of today. In fact, there WERE major problems with unregulated business and the abuse of unskilled and uneducated workers – about 60% of the workforce. And as free and great as America was STILL becoming (we were not a world power at this time), it is absolutely insane to think many of these peoples were motivated by sinister intentions.
Don’t you know liberals who truly believe they are “progressive” because it is kind and caring? They are wrong, but they aren’t motivated by power, greed or revenge. More so those who were tired of seeing truly ignorant people having no rights while being exploited by some truly evil corporate owners.
Those like Beck that think a message of “small government and lower taxes” was an interest to that society – let alone be able to sell it to the majority who were barely surviving – are like those who arrogantly condemn the well meaning physicians who practiced blood-letting in the 19th century. It was the best knowledge they had at the time. America was growing but life was hard. Life expectancy was like 42.
THIS IS THE POINT about Newt Gingrich and the individual mandate. It is so easy for us after 2 intensive years of self-education to come to the conclusion of mandate problems, and even THAT wouldn’t have happened without the practice of learning about HillaryCare. This is why Newt is correct in saying MOST conservatives were trying to find a solution that didn’t put government in charge of the entire healthcare system. When the Heritage Foundation ALSO was for an “individual mandate” you have to really stop and check yourself on what this meant AT THAT TIME. With a prosperous country and the public widely ready to adopt HillaryCare, conservatives were frantically trying to find out a conservative solution while not losing the battle as people that wanted to deprive poor people of healthcare.
IT IS VERY FAIR to point out that a few conservatives like Santorum did NOT go along with this and that Newt Gingrich’s “conservative compass” should have notified him he was heading in the wrong direction. But my ancestor, Thomas Edison, took 2,000 directions before finding out how to make a light bulb work. I don’t think people want to claim he was disqualified as an electrician or inventor.
Here is the funny thing: Beck’s favorite model for a president is Calvin Coolidge who set up government regulation over the radio industry in it’s infancy. Hardly a free market ideal. Coolidge’s LACK of attention to regulation let Wall Street run wild and set up the 1929 crash. He was a master at vetoing liberal bills, but offered nothing as an alternative. And that especially harmed the farming sectors of the economy. It’s why people were ready for FDR. He nearly let tens of thousands perish in the great Mississippi flood letting the state and local economies try to be saddled with their rescue and recovery need, and finally acquiesced under pressure. He didn’t say anything against the KKK when they marched in Washington nor took a position on the Scopes Monkey trial that set the course of culture on evolution. Is Beck ok with that too?
Bottom line on Teddy and Newt? Newt absolutely has to clarify what it is he finds so compelling about Roosevelt. To call Theodore Roosevelt a “Progressive” in the mold of Obama when there was hardly ANY government presence domestically or internationally is like saying having your first beer at a baseball game is the same as being a hardcore drug user. It doesn’t fly. But Roosevelt’s philosophy ABSOLUTELY was a departure from freedom toward government manipulation. And it is bothersome Newt isn’t defending this and explaining this more clearly. He IS the academic in the argument here and he is failing on the point he should be excelling at.
Beck also asked us to LOOK at Gingrich’s record. And not just the “good” stuff. So what is Newt’s ACTUAL record?
NEWT GINGRICH RECORD: CONSERVATIVE OR LIBERAL?
Unlike Obama, Cain, (and to some extent Bachmann), there is no lack of speeches, books – and most importantly – votes to find out who Newt is. The Club for Growth has an exhaustive PDF white paper on Newt and there are many other conservative sources including the American Conservative Union (Rating 90%). So how do people like Beck make the jump that a man
William F. Buckley called, “profoundly committed free trader,” progressive and worse?
Because it’s not 100% conservative. Gingrich admitted to CBN recently that he regretted his vote for the Department of Education and evolved from a Rockefeller Republican (liberal republican) into a conservative. Who hasn’t, right? Except that many like Reagan didn’t have a contiguous public voting record during the change. So what were these terrible “Progressive” votes of his:
- Voted YES on the Reagan tax cut of 1981
- Voted YES on the Reagan tax reform bill of 1986
- Voted NO on the George H.W. Bush “Read My Lips” tax hike in 1990.
- Voted NO on the Clinton tax hike in 1993.
- Voted YES on the capital gains tax cut in 1997.
- Voted NO on the Chrysler bailout in 1979
- Voted YES on the Gramm-Rudman balanced budget bill in 1985
- Voted YES on a balanced budget amendment (as part of the “Contract for America” effort that he led) in 1995
- Led the effort and voted YES to cut $16.4 billion from the budget in 1995.
Voted YES on welfare reform in 1996
I’m sure Beck would claim this was ALL a setup to seduce non-suspecting patriots into a hypnotic state until he could REALLY get his hands on power! AH HA! Only one problem. He barely survived a battle against DeLay and Boehner (who couldn’t make an argument for crony capitalism and progressive against these two right?), and STEPPED DOWN from his Speakership and Congressional seat after winning election.
AND FINALLY we have an important point – apart from the insane and uninformed ravings of those on our side. Gingrich did not feel that pressing for hardcore conservative positions with a Democrat President would serve our purpose. Especially after they had successfully enacted welfare reform and balanced budgets by working WITH Democrats than against them. And this is a good argument.
Is it better to remain in power and do SOME good, or stand on principle and lose all power to do any good?
ACU’s Keene calls Gingrich a partisan but NOT a conservative although he admits his speakership was basically conservative. (Figure that one out.) But if he is not a conservative, why did he create and fulfill the VERY conservative CONTRACT WITH AMERICA? And why did those who argued AGAINST Gingrich’s leadership – end up running the franchise into the ground that gave us Pelosi and Reed? Was the prescription drug and Head Start programs under Bush better under the anti-Newt forces?
I think like the Roosevelt and the Clinton years the “TIMES” will make Gingrich. We would like to think of our leaders as the William Wilberforce’s of history who have one true guiding NORTH and would rather lose the argument for decades until the ship aligns to their view. Gingrich instead seems fine going from NORTHWEST to NORTHEAST to stay on the ship. His impact AS A LEADER on the LAST MAJOR REPUBLICAN victory (Balanced Budgets, Welfare Reform) seem to me to not only make Beck’s argument silly about being a progressive – but also diminish the REAL records of Santorum and Bachmann. It is one thing to vote on a measure – or even sponsor a bill. it is quite another to motivate dozens of other leaders to a cause and actually WIN a battle or a war. This Gingrich did.
THE ADULTERY TRUST ARGUMENT
Could the debate have gotten anymore uncomfortable last night than bringing up the issue of fidelity with cameras staring up the nostrils of Calista Gingrich? AWKWARD! But Newt correctly stated that character and fidelity are certainly fair issues of discussion.
There are three arguments being made. First is that Newt is a leach like Clinton and is a moral reprobate. Second is that because of Newt’s two adulterous affairs he is untrustworthy as a political leader even if it was 20 years ago. The third is that, at least according to Erick Erickson of Redstate, Governor Perry would make a better President because:
He’s on his first wife still and has the most consistent record of conservative policies. And we hate the same people and institutions. We have the same general world view.
Last point first.
We in the Texas tea party (you will note in the polls) are not heavily for a Perry presidency. It’s not because he isn’t a decent governor or a good Christian guy. (He is.) Perry has consistently betrayed the tea party movement by not lifting a finger against the reelection of the truly progressive House Speaker Joe Strauss or by listening to Patriot and former Department of Justice attorney J. Christian Abrahams to protect the Voter ID law from Eric Holder which we so ferociously fought to enact. He refused appeals by grassroots conservatives to veto State Board of Education redistricting and most importantly, two years ago he promised Texans he would not run for President if they elected him Governor. (That one stunned his friend Sarah Palin.)
So let me ask you. Is adultery which was publicly repented of over 20 years ago (and offset against enormous efforts to instill God and moral values into our country through his writings, speeches and films since) more or less of a “sin” than breaking a promise you made two years ago to an entire state? Let’s go to the book (Rev 21):
8But as for the cowards and the ignoble and the contemptible and the cravenly lacking in courage and the cowardly submissive, and as for the unbelieving and faithless, and as for the depraved and defiled with abominations, and as for murderers and the lewd and adulterous and the practicers of magic arts and the idolaters (those who give supreme devotion to anyone or anything other than God) and all liars (those who knowingly convey untruth by word or deed)–[all of these shall have] their part in the lake that blazes with fire and brimstone.
It seems to me that God equates lying as no less of a sin than adultery to me. And we know that Newt has repented to God and in God’s eyes is “white as snow.”
Is he untrustworthy because he DID break his vow to his first two wives? It is true that on the first marriage he was very young and his entire family tried to get them to divorce for years. But if you SAID you should remain faithful “for better OR WORSE,” you should. We have every evidence to believe he was sincere in his life change as attested to by those around him including his daughter by his second wife who defends him vigorously. No one really knows, but certainly in his PUBLIC record, he has not run on NOT raising taxes and then become John Kerry. People will have to make up their own mind but I personally see ONLY a commitment to moral values and family the past 20 years – and NOTHING to betray a general conservative voting stance for most of his public life.
And can I ask this without you hating me, (Christians and moralists who hate Newt)? How can you accept the book of Psalms and the life of King David who not only was an adulterer, but also a murderer but not accept your brothers and sisters as being capable of real change? Peter DENIED Christ and led the church. Paul (Saul) KILLED Christians, and wrote half of the New Testament. Doesn’t God almost ALWAYS use the weak ones to prove HE is in control and not our own “works” of righteousness?
You will have to make up your own mind of course. But please. At least be intelligent and prayerful over your own decisions and what you pass along to others.
For a comparison of the records of Newt Gingrich & Mitt Romney, see in Gulag Bound, “Newt Gingrich vs. Mitt Romney; Comparing Conservative ‘Products of Work,’“ once again, by PolitiJim.