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Bitterfest 2012


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I’ve made this point a million times — I hope longtime readers will forgive the repetition: Conservatives always say that the Left monopolizes education, K through graduate school. And then when left-wing candidates win elections, these conservatives say, “Blow me down, how did that happen?!”

I was educated by the Left, like everyone else. But what they fed me, I largely spat out, eventually. It would not be normal for most people to do this. Most people accept what they’re taught. Hasn’t that been true in every time and place forever? (I don’t claim to be the Durants or someone.) (Wish I were.)

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The Left has . . . what? They have education, the movies, entertainment television, popular music, the news media — the core shaping institutions.

And we have . . . what? Country music, talk radio, and NASCAR?

Ain’t enough! Need more juice!

A question, and one that Mitt Romney asked, in his way: Why would anyone come here from abroad to do business? Don’t they have better options? Might India soon become a better option, if it’s not already? Canada is, I understand.

Canada!

For the next four years, conservatives will be clinging to their guns and their religion more than ever, that’s for sure.

Hey, won’t it be exciting to see what Obama’s “flexibility” leads to!

And Obamacare! Like Julia, we’re wedded to the government forever. Amen.

In this campaign, Mitt Romney did not have merely Obama and the Democrats to overcome: He had the grievance culture, the entitlement culture, and the Hollywood culture to overcome. These cultures, together, have triumphed in American life.

(I’m one to talk about a grievance culture, given my bitterfests, I recognize.) (But at least I’m not demanding that the government make me happy!)

Perhaps the current America simply would not and could not elect a Mitt Romney. He is, in a way, out of his time. Out of step. A throwback. That’s one reason I like him so.

In America today, we have 14-year-olds screwing like banshees. Everyone thinks that’s cool, or most people do. We have abortion on demand. Nobody gets married, except gays. Divorce is over 50 percent, I believe. It’s “no fault” divorce at that. “The culture is a sewer,” as my friend Mark Helprin says.

Could a Mitt Romney win in this environment? An environment that adores Bill Clinton? Cool is king. Obama is cool. Romney is not. He’s square.

You know that Obama sex ad, the one appealing to the hookup culture? “When it’s your first time, make sure it’s with a really cool guy — but not your husband, ha ha ha!” I have paraphrased. But you know the ad I’m talking about.

If that ad doesn’t backfire but actually succeeds, Romney can’t win.

There is no place for Ozzie Nelson in this culture. There is a place, of course — but not an election-winning place. A remnant place. You get to be the target on Saturday Night Live. Never the cool kid, never the mainstreamer.

On NRO the other night — Election Night — someone said, “Hey, GOP, no more candidates over 50, okay?!!” How disheartening. But maybe it’s right. Maybe someone with some experience and maturity is too out of step. Reagan was nominated — the first time — when he was 69. He wouldn’t make the new cut. Would miss it by almost two decades.

Romney wanted the continuation of American primacy in the world. As the 20th century was the “American Century,” he wanted the 21st century to be an American century. The public, I gather, is not much into that. Decline is a choice. And the people may well be saying, “Yes, please.”

A lot of my colleagues don’t like it when someone laments that so few pay taxes. That the tax burden falls on as few as it does.

Well, I’m one of those lamenters. I think this question of “skin in the game” is serious. I have stated my views on taxation many times, too many times. But let me state here, quickly, that I don’t think taxes should be viewed as something for other people to pay. We should all contribute to the commonweal, even if it’s a mite. This is part of the dignity of citizenship, I believe.

Why should so few carry the freight for the rest of us?

I would find Obama’s victory this week easier to swallow if he had not campaigned like such a scoundrel — if he had not painted Romney as a plutocrat, felon, and traitor who would give your wife cancer and put y’all back in chains. (Obama had some help from his partners and friends, true.)

It’s one thing to be a left-winger who leads the country to ruin, wittingly or not. But do you have to be an SOB while you’re doing it?

The Democrats are always accusing Republicans of not caring about people. You know what’s not caring about people? Running up a $16 trillion debt. Someone will have to pay that. It won’t be today’s political class. It will be our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren . . .

How compassionate. The attitude today is, “Gimme, gimme, gimme. And if it beggars future generations, what do I care? I want mine.”

Yes, really caring.

I’ve said it a million times: There’s nothing compassionate about economic collapse. You think some belt-tightening is painful? Try economic collapse. You can ask the Grecians (as a great man once said). (Other than Keats, I mean.)

Ahmadinejad was dead-right, I’m afraid: You can’t hold a $16 trillion debt and be a world power. Out of the mouths of genocidal maniacs . . .

I doubt that many Americans were impressed by Romney’s acts of charity — his charitable giving. Charity is passé, even quaint (like so much about Mitt). If you want to give, you give to the government. And then government gives to the needy, on the government’s terms.

I remember a very good half-hour on Firing Line between Bill Buckley and Michael Kinsley. They were talking about the basics of life: the relationship between the citizen and the state, etc. And the subject of charity came up, somehow. Kinsley exploded, “People shouldn’t have to receive charity!” (I’m paraphrasing, but closely.) “They are owed payments by the government because they’re human beings!”



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