Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Have Broom, Will Dissemble

Okay, so it's a gratuitous shot. Also obvious, and not all that clever. Big deal. Halloween happens to be my birthday, and I consider this pic an early gift from my staunchly Republican uncle, whose periodic contributions grace this site. And which will get utterly swamped by Hillary posts over the next year in any case. Best of all, this inspired me to think up a new title. I'm going to need a lot more where that came from, in more ways, and for more reasons, than one.

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Remember how Mrs. Clinton recently dragged George McGovern's stupid "demogrant" gimmick out of mothballs and kiddified it, making it unimaginably more expensive in the process? Well, stand back, folks, because when it comes to garish, incoherent profligacy, you ain't seen nothin' yet:
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York unveiled the second biggest domestic policy idea of her Democratic presidential campaign today, proposing to spend $20 billion to $25 billion a year to create 401(k)-style retirement accounts for all Americans and provide federal matching money of up to $1,000 to middle-income people.
Under the plan, the government would give a dollar-to-dollar match for the first $1,000 saved by Americans who earn up to $60,000 annually. For those who earn $60,000 to $100,000, the government would provide a 50% match, or $500 for the first $1,000 saved.
Mrs. Clinton said she would pay for the program by freezing the estate tax at its 2009 level of $7 million per couple. A campaign analysis of the plan said that the freeze would affect about 10,000 of “the wealthiest estates” in the United States and provide a new retirement savings systems for an estimated tens of millions of families. ...
As with her biggest policy plan for universal health insurance, Mrs. Clinton cast her savings proposal in terms of choice: If Americans like their 401(k) plans and other retirement accounts, they can keep those, while those who lack any savings plan will have a chance to start one with government help and save $5,000 a year on a tax-deferred basis.
“Saving in the accounts will be easy — it should not require a Ph.D. to save for retirement,” Mrs. Clinton said.
It should also not require a Ph.D. to grasp that this is George Bush's Social Security personal account proposal transmogrified into yet another gargantuan entitlement and middle class dependency snare. How can Hillary possibly be in favor of giving Americans taxpayer dollars to invest in stocks, bonds, and mutual funds in this "risky scheme" and be so adamantly against its application to Social Security? Indeed, isn't this a tacit admission that Social Security is, indeed, actuarially doomed and an implicit concession that the 2005 White House proposal that her party clubbed to death was right all along?
This meatball ought to be beyond effortless for any of the GOP contenders to bash out of the proverbial park (ditto her foreign policy manifesto). But it bears the indellible trademark of Clintonoid audacity, and the accompanying condescending assumption that voters will let this belt-high change-up float right by them like it was a 100MPH fastball down and away by snapping up the "FREE MONEY!!!" bait, and villifying any Republican that so much as rolls his eyes at it.
A lot of Pachyderm common sense got pre-empted by this tactic during the '90s. It would do us and our eventual standard-bearer a great deal of good to remember that, and finally learn the lesson it teaches.
Personally, I'm getting my gag reflex back into shape. I think it's going to be grievously needed.
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Here's the lede to last Thursday's Daniel Henninger piece in the Wall Street Journal:
In an interview in yesterday's Washington Post, Hillary Clinton said she had contributed to the country's mood of bitter partisanship and wants to "put an end to it."
Never mind what she went on to claim - the notion of "building a centrist coalition," which, given the neoBolshevik policy platform she's assembling, is rather like a brontosaurus building a coalition of hamsters - doesn't that choice of words bear a much more sinister connotation coming from Hugo Chavez's soulmate?
And you thought my "Alaska gulag" references were just coarse hyperbole. Just wait, my friends, just you wait. Reimposition of the "Fairness Doctrine" will just be her prologue.
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We cannot negotiate with individual terrorists; they must be hunted down and captured or killed.
Well does J-Ger ask....
Is there some significance to the term, "individual terrorists"? We may negotiate with groups? Is this opening the door to discussions with Hamas or Hezbollah at some point in the future?
He doesn't think that phrasing is an accident. I personally think it's not so much unintentional candor as the complacent assumption that nobody will dig deep enough into her campaign site to unearth nuggets like this one, and if they do, her Machine will just systematically dismember anybody that does. It also reveals, at least to me, just how much they believe they already have 2008 in the bag - by hook AND by crook.
Hillary's grand summit with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Bashir Assad, Kim jong-il, and Osama bin Laden is coming, my friends. It'll be the biggest gathering of dictators in one place (other than Turtle Bay, anyway) in history.
And yes, that last sentence is more loaded than Ted Kennedy.
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Is Mrs. Clinton's overconfidence justified? William Katz seems to think so:
Both 1960 and 1980 had one thing in common: In both years the winning candidate faced grave doubts that even permeated his own party. Reagan faced an even greater worry than Kennedy - that he was a scripted movie actor who couldn't be trusted with war and peace. Readers will recall that some Republicans wanted to name former President Gerald R. Ford as Reagan's running mate, creating a "co-presidency" to assure concerned voters. It didn't happen, and Reagan didn't level Moscow.
I thought about 1960 and 1980 while watching Hillary Clinton last week, and wondered whether 2008 could be a feeling election. On the GOP side, sadly, there doesn't seem to be anyone who could produce that lovin' feeling. There are fine possible presidents, but they flash "continue" rather than "new era." On the other side, Barack Obama had the potential, but tossed it away. So far he's given the Democratic race a new birth of boredom. He can still rally, but I wouldn't bet my Al Gore hand-powered cooling fan on it.
That leaves Hillary, and that is the great threat to conservatives. The candidate who makes it a feeling election usually wins, and I suspect that's what she'll attempt to do. She's already attacking the Kennedy/Reagan "doubt" problem by trying to appear the grown-up on national defense, at the same time appeasing the Ho Chi Minh Choral Society on her party's left. If nominated, I have no doubt she'll make her appeal spiritual as well as political, claiming that her election will uplift us all.
Some conservatives think Hillary will be easy to beat. So wrong. Conservatives must not commit the same blunder liberals have, believing that if we think something is true, others will think the same because we are so bright, so decent, and support the troops. Hillary Clinton and her team are slick professionals, with a happy mix of savvy and savagery. They've studied those past elections. And they have Bill Clinton, who knew how to feel our pain, increase it, and still win.
Get ready to battle a candidate who invokes the spirit of a new age, because Hillary is too smart not to.
Sounds silly, doesn't it? A woman with none of her "husband's" political gifts trying to put over such a brazen fraud, in the sense of her "new age" being a plunge into anything but comprehensive national disaster.
But never forget the Clintonoid motto: Témérité, toujours témérité!
And if that doesn't work, she'll just wave her magic wand and turn us all into giant castrated newts for her palace guard....