Thursday, February 07, 2008

The McCain - Conservative Spat in the GOP: Facts
  1. The spat is a sign of vibrant health, not dysfunction. It's a sign of a party with a big tent and a large set of precious values the correct ways of adherence to which are not easy to discern. This is a heritage of values amongst which we are meant to dispute, and the dispute can wax rancorous proportionately to the preciousness of the values at stake and the difficulty of negotiating their trade-offs. In contrast, the leftist party is devoid of vibrant philosophy and therefore there is only a drone about two or three egalitarian and pacifist shibboleths where a deliberation should be.
  2. McCain is a conservative of mediocre judgment. That's the bottom line in the present dispute over his worthiness as a candidate. Neither staunch McCain supporters nor his vociferous detractors will agree with me. But I'm right. Any conservative with good judgment should, upon reflection and in a cool hour, be able to tell that this is so. The evidence that he is a conservative is conclusive. The evidence that he has made many bad calls is also conclusive.
  3. The GOP did not put up an excellent conservative candidate. Therefore, the conservatives in the party did not get robbed.
  4. Any intent of conservatives not to vote in November when the candidate is McCain is patently irrational. It's understandable, and I succumbed to it a few days ago myself. But it is irrational. To use it as a political bludgeon, as a threat meant to pull McCain toward conservative positions on pain of losing conservative votes, is to practice Mutual Assured Destruction. It is to threaten to do something irrational. If they persist in the threats even after having "calmed down" and reflected for a while, then ironically it is they who are the RINO's. More importantly, they are ideologues in the negative sense of that term, lacking in political or practical intelligence beyond the abstract conservative ideas. They are as poor conservatives as McCain.
  5. Any non-conservative supporters of McCain who want conservative Republicans to shut up and drop their objections at this time are also RINO's. See point #1.
Don't want to be a RINO? Then support McCain and raise any conservative objections to his record that you have. Raise them vociferously and acerbically if you like. Or if you have no objections to McCain's record, then review the objections of conservatives who do and reply to them or admit that they are right.