American Elephants

Ann Romney by The Elephant's Child

Ann Romney is a natural, Mitt Romney’s Secret Weapon. Just in case you missed her speech last night. She was absolutely terrific.

Rep. Artur Davis by The Elephant's Child

In case you missed the speeches last night — not everyone is a political junkie — here is Artur Davis’s speech, impressive, and I’m glad he’s joined us.

Madison Rising: The Star Spangled Banner by The Elephant's Child
August 29, 2012, 5:17 pm
Filed under: Freedom, Law, The United States

We’re Supposed to Argue and Fight: We Have Different Principles. by The Elephant's Child

Bruce Thornton has written an essay for the Hoover Institution “In Praise of Polarization.” Certainly complaints about the “polarization” of the electorate are to be heard everywhere. Many decry President Obama’s unfulfilled promise to bring us all together and lessen the dissent.

Norman Ornstein and Thomas E.Mann recently wrote “The partisan and ideological polarization from which we now suffer comes at a time when critical problems cry out for resolution, making for a particularly toxic mix.” The “consensus is clear,” says Thornton, “Problems need solving, but political polarization has paralyzed the government.”

This reflects a misunderstanding of what the founders intended, and a misunderstanding of humanity. Why would anyone think that we are suddenly all going to get along?

Such complaints about polarization reflect a misunderstanding of our political order. What we decry as polarization exists not because politicians are party hacks, but because citizens passionately disagree about fundamental, and sometimes irreconcilable, principles and beliefs that most public policies necessarily reflect. Nor are these conflicts always amenable to compromise, which requires at some level a betrayal or weakening of those beliefs. The conflict over slavery is the obvious example, a dispute that defied every legislative and political “compromise” and ultimately had to be resolved by a bloody civil war. The Civil Rights movement and the disagreement over the war in Vietnam are other examples of “polarization” much more divisive and violent than anything we are experiencing today. In fact, such fierce disputes are as prevalent in American political history as bipartisan compromise. Both are in the DNA of our political system.

I think that the proliferation of words and ideas that flow at us from the radio, TV, the internet, Facebook, Twitter, our iPads and soon our Dick Tracy wrist computers or implants. The Founders had some broadsheets and newspapers, but a Town Crier doesn’t convey the mix with which we are confronted.  I don’t think our brains are any better than theirs were — often I am sure that we have lost a great deal — but we are probably better at multitasking (I have a radio on as I type and read ) but what I gain in quantity, I certainly lack in clarity. At least, I imagine the Founders lives as less cluttered.

All that polarization that everyone worries about so much, is the way it is supposed to be. We have strong principles that aren’t really subject to bipartisan compromise. That’s why they provided us with an electoral process through which we could battle it out until the next time. That’s why we have these conventions —to lay out our ideas and unite over our agreements.

Do read the whole thing, it’s worth your time.


Priorities USA: “Olive.” Another Lying Ad. by The Elephant's Child

You wold think that after the Joe Soptic embarrassment that these Obama-PAC people would get their facts straight and maybe vet the stars of their ads.  First there was Joe Soptic who was trying to blame Mitt Romney for the job he lost two years after Mitt left Bain, and blame him for his wife’s death 6 years later. Then they came up with the alleged “Republican Women for Obama” who turned out to be hardcore Democrats. So now they found  Olive Chase, a “small business owner” in Massachusetts. She is a registered independent, voted for Romney in 2002 when he won the governorship of Massachusetts, and claims she gave money to his campaign.  Ten years later, she is no longer a supporter.

“Governor Romney cares about big business; he cares about tax cuts for wealthy people, and I certainly do not believe he cares about my hardworking employees,” Chase says in the ad.”I feel like I was duped by Mitt Romney.”  Ooops!

Olive is more than a small business owner. In 2007, aside from four Casual Gourmet locations, an upscale cafe at Cape Cod Hospital and clubhouses at the Sandwich Hollows and Captains Gold Course in Brewster, off premise catering is the mainstay of the business.  It’s grown to include company outings, glittery fundraising events, cocktail parties, and funerals and their list of clients reads like a “Who’s Who” of the area and beyond.

She may have felt “duped” by Gov. Romney, but her business boomed during his term. The ad says that job creation “fell” to 47th under Romney. The year before he took office it was 50th. It climbed from 47th to 28th in his final year. It averaged 47th for the whole of his term, but it was improving, not declining.

Today Olive has four food service contracts.  Cape Cod Health Care is my largest client. We’re known mostly for our off-premise catering. We do 75 to 100 weddings each year.  I write 90 percent of the menus and design the events.  We’re the largest caterer on Cape Cod and one of the largest in Southeast Massachusetts. …I don’t like to quote figures, but we do about $3,000,000 a year in catering.

I believe Obama put the dividing line for “millionaires and billionaires at just $250,000. Certainly Olive seems to fit in the millionaire and billionaire class, and apparently prospered under Gov. Romney. Just who”duped” whom?

The progressives at this Super-PAC, like their candidate, don’t do their homework.

(h/t: Ace of Spades)

In These Hands: Colorado by The Elephant's Child

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