Monday, July 11, 2005

Core Values? Still Deciding

Quick question, which Democrat is most likely to make a liberal gush with pride?

Five will get you ten, someone says Barack Obama. Now, I don't have an opinion on the fellow. I dislike his politics--of course--but I didn't see that phenomenal speech he made. It was during the Democratic Convention, if memory serves me correctly, and by then I was thoroughly bored with the whole thing and did not watch.

Mr. Obama was in Eatonville campaigning for U.S. Senator Bill Nelson, D-FL. He's up against Katherine Harris. The crowds came out in force and were enthusiastic to see this up-and-comer.

There is a point in all this which I am finally getting to. Obama and Nelson took some questions during their appearance.

The most provocative question was the first.

"I see a Democratic Party afraid to say they're Democrats, who voted for the war in Iraq and voted for tax cuts for the wealthy," said Glenn Anderson of Orlando. "Why should I remain a Democrat?"

That is a good question, Glenn, and I will address it, but first, I'll let Mr. Obama have a stab at it.

"The Democrats at times have lost their way," conceded Obama. "We are trying to decide what our core values are."

The criterion for judging the party isn't whether it's to the left or right, "but are we true to our core values," he said. Nobody defined core values.

Good try Mr. Obama. You very cleverly eluded a potentially damaging question. You are a smart man though, if what I hear is at all correct. Surely you have some core values. You are a Senator from Illinois for goodness sake. I thought values were a pre-requisite.

Now the real reason that the Democrats cannot decide what their values are is that they are caught in a difficult position. The party is overwhelmingly anti-Iraq war. Yet even with all his seemingly contradictory statements, John Kerry lost the election largely because voters didn't think he was serious on security. Don't take it from me though. Here is former President Clinton with some valuable insight.

Dissecting John Kerry's loss to President Bush last year, Clinton blamed the Democratic candidate's soft stand on security and the party's inability to reach out to rural, white America.

According to Clinton, in the final days of campaigning on Kerry's behalf, it was clear even Kerry's supporters weren't clear on the candidate's position on national security.

"I think, in the end, he lost in a close race because of the security issue," he said.

The reality is, the Democrats cannot yet win running on an anti-taxes anti-war platform. This could change, but remember what happened to McGovern? He lost. Yet Bill Clinton won running on a campaign largely centered on tax cuts for the middle classes. Moderate Demorats can win, liberal ones can't. History spells that out quite clearly.

The Democrats need to find some values soon, before people like Glenn leave and take the liberal base with him. I've said numerous times that the elections at this point in history revolve around the Republican party and its conception of "core values".

It's nice to be vindicated. It's twice as nice when the all-star of the Democratic party is the one doing the vindicating. Thanks Obama.


Seth said...

Hmmmm...someone's been checking the Drudge Report (me too; I read those same two articles)

What I think is particularly funny is that the Democrats have to "figure out" their core values. They have meetings and conferences to decide what they believe. Shouldn't they simply know what they believe?

Conservatives know what they believe--or at least I do. I don't have to confer with anyone else necessarily before I can articulate my core beliefs. If I may quote the subtitle of my blog: "The truths I believe in and stand for are founded in a God bigger than this world. Regardless of my stumblings in word or deed, His truth remains unmatched, undefeated and ever eternal."

A Wiser Man Than I said...

You and I have a theological basis for our beliefs. Selective Democrats may believe in God, but the party is certainly not founded on a Christian philosophy, and to a large extent this replies to the Republican party as well.

It would be funny that they can't figure this out except that they are deemed a credible political party. To say they are thrashing deparately is to insult the drowning man.

Loyal Achates said...

Barack Obama is midlly liberal; if it were up to me, Russ Fiengold is the one who really stands for the party's values.

plenty of Democrats believe, WM. They just don't think they ought to force others too. That's the difference between the parties.

Conservatives believe, but they believe in things that aren't true. Is that better than having doubts?

BTW, the Democrats were 2 points behind in the last presidential election and are 5 seats away from the sneate and 12 away from the House. That's pretty damn close, if you ask me. They just need a little more direction to push themsleves over the top.

Loyal Achates said...

Lousy typos...

A Wiser Man Than I said...

I forgive you on the typos. Now, you claim that "Conservatives believe, but they believe in things that aren't true." What is it that someone like myself believes that is not true?

You are not allowed to clump Bush and company with me. If there is a true conservative in Washington, I haven't yet seen it. Thus, one could argue that the reason the Republicans are close to losing power to the Democrats is that they too have lost their core values. The American people figures, well, the Republicans didn't fix it, let's give the Democrats a shot. The pendulum will swing back again; it always does.

I'm not going to lose a lot of sleep if the Democrats do win. They are simply slightly more liberal, slightly more lost, Republicans.