The basic downfall of these Leftist rants is their usual inability to see any reality that they do not like: In this case they fail to note that in all sorts of ways America still compares favourably with declining Europe -- and that Europe has had to take even more desperate measures to deal with the financial crisis than America has. I don't think America has nationalized a single retail bank yet but in Europe governments are taking over financial institutions wholesale. And China's banks have been on a knife-edge for YEARS! Capitalism is still doing better! And it would do even better if it were not so hog-tied by a tangle of Democrat-inspired regulations
Did you realize that we conservatives got all we wanted and that's what screwed up just about everything, from hurricanes and Iraq to the global financial meltdown? That's a rapidly-developing propaganda theme being disseminated in the Big Media. Case in point: Thomas Frank (What's the Matter with Kansas?) in the Wall Street Journal.
"Over many years of ascendancy, conservative Republicans have filled government agencies with conservative Republicans and proceeded to enact the conservative Republican policy wish list -- tax cuts, deregulation, privatization, outsourcing federal work, and so on.
"And as a consequence of these policies our conservative Republican government has bungled most of the big tasks that have fallen to it. The rescue and recovery of the Gulf Coast was a disaster. The reconstruction of Iraq was a disaster. The regulatory agencies became so dumb they didn't even see the disasters they were set up to prevent. And each disaster was attributable to the conservative philosophy of government."
If Mr. Frank really believes this, then one of us is crazy. But I don't think he believes it. I think he's in the tank for Barack Obama and wants to use the megaphone of the WSJ to put some meat on Obama's bones of "the last eight years." You can read his whole article, and you'll find no shred of evidence to support any of his claims. His logic is simple -- and flawed. It goes like this.
Republicans are conservative. (Flawed premise number one.)
Republicans have ruled in recent years. (Flawed premise number two.)
Everything wrong in that time is therefore due to conservatism. (The good old post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy, even if based on good premises.)
We conservatives wish Republicans governed with any conservatism. There were some tax rate cuts in 2001, but that's about the sum total of the conservative "wish list" that was enacted under George W. Bush.
Much more here
How can the land of victories and optimism come to terms with a life after the imperial moment?
Learning to decline - is it doable? Can a world power that no longer presumes to dominate the world find a new role, without depression or biting fear, is there life after the imperial moment? That is the question that the United States faces and that will define the term of the next American President starting 20 January 2009. Managing getting weaker, revising the political self-image, if not the national identity is at least as great a challenge as tangible dangers; from the results of the financial crisis to competition from Russia and China to terrorism. Anyone who heard Barack Obama and John McCain at the end of the last week during their first debate had to have had doubts as to whether they (and their country) have clearly made out the entire dimension of the fall of America or whether they have found the courage to speak the truth.
It feels like a mocking punishment of the Gods that George W. Bush, the onetime embodiment of American Hubris, has to preside over the economic humiliation of his nation after the political and moral crises that had already openly broken out. America is simultaneously paying the price of power and powerlessness. The global image of the United States has not recovered since the days of the dominance rush, when the Bush government made its land hated in the world with the Iraq War and the excesses of Abu Ghraib. At the same time, however, the superior power position against which the anti-American resentment is still pointed, has long begun to crumble.
The economic and political dynamic has shifted to Asia at the outset of the 21st century - a secular process that has only entered the world consciousness with true drama in the last three of four years. A resurgent Russia can militarily force Georgia, the US client, to its knees without penalty. The fall of Saddam Hussein did not bring the democratic transformation of the Islamic world, but instead the end of the American era in the Middle East - from the Iranian atomic danger to the oil production quotas of Saudi Arabia to the power games of Pakistani domestic politics - control has slipped away from Washington.
This is all happening with breathtaking speed. Even in January 2005, at the beginning of his second term, George W. Bush announced perhaps the most ambitious historic program that has ever been proclaimed by a modern democratic statesman: The spread of the "fire of freedom" that, like a prairie fire, would grip the far corners of the world. It is difficult to imagine that Bush's successor, whether Democrat or Republican, will again act and speak in this manner...
Preachers of calm, who fight against the downfall thesis, point to earlier periods of American weakness, that soon thereafter were over with: At the end of the 1980s, the future seemed to belong to Japan, and during the Cold War there were even experts that gave the destitute and strictly disciplined Soviet Union better chances of winning and surviving than the opulent and softened down United States.
But it isn't always all as it once was - today's American loss of power it is not. The Communist eastern bloc was in truth only capable of competing militarily and hopefully inferior in all other areas, as was immediately shown after 1989 during the complete industrial collapse from East Berlin to Vladivostok. And Japan is a small country handicapped as the historic aggressor in the Second World War when compared to self-confident giants like China or India. The entire history of the United States to date was the story of its rise to the pinnacle of a world dominated by the West; but exactly this world, however, is no longer self-evident.
British bureaucrats are STILL losing data: "A computer hard drive with the private details of 700,000 Armed Forces personnel and potential applicants is missing, The Ministry of Defence said today. The portable drive contains the names, addresses, passport numbers, dates of birth and driving licence details of around 100,000 serving personnel across the Army, Royal Navy and RAF, plus their next-of-kin details. It also has data on 600,000 potential services applicants and the names of their referees. Officials are 'not ruling out' the risk that bank account details of personnel were held on the drive, which belonged to its IT contractor EDS. The department said it learned of the loss on Wednesday and MoD Police were investigating. The missing drive is the latest information security breach to hit the MoD"
Stopping ACORN: "ACORN is rapidly becoming a major issue, with the Republican base outraged over the voter registration fraud investigations in ten states. An online petition has been created to demand an investigation of it and that the government take steps to stop its continued violations of election law. While there, take a look at the website of this new organization, stopacorn.org."
For more postings from me, see OBAMA WATCH (2), TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena
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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)