Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Is Boris Johnson a conservative?

Peter Hitchens below puts the "No" case rather succinctly. I think an even more succinct  reponse to Peter is to say that Boris is a BRITISH conservative. The British Tory party has always been a bit wishy washy by strict conservative standards but that is inevitable in a  system where the winning party almost always has to be pretty centrist.  It was precisely that Jeremy Corbin made to effort to win the centre that he lost so soundly to Boris.  His nauseous antisemitism, love of terrorists and promises of an economic upheaval were just not British.

But the global warming craze is a dominant theme in the media with few prominent people opposing it so that is part of the political centre.  Few conservatives believe in it but at election time it would be too big a burden to gainsay it.  What conservatives do is pay lip service to it while doing as little as possible about it.  Politicians generally do the same -- something Ms Thunberg has yet to fully grasp. So Boris will do the same -- quietly scale back climate-related  initiatives and waffling as he does so.  Australia's Prime minister, Scott Morrison, is a past-master at that. It may be noted that the latest "Conference of the Parties" has just wrapped up in Madrid with zero agreement from anyone to do anything more about global warming. The British representatives were part of that.

And Tories as a centre-right party is in fact historically common in Britain. One could mention socialist policies favoured by Winston Churchill and his general acceptance of Attlee's innovations but it is clearly to Disraeli that Boris harks back.

Disraeli is generally acknowledged as an outstandingly successful Prime minister at the height of the British Empire in the late 19th century.  Yet it was Disraeli, not any Leftist, who introduced a whole raft of social welfare legislation to Britain.  He introduced some of Britain's first worker protection laws and extended the vote to many working class people who had never had it before. As a result of these social reforms Leftist MP Alexander Macdonald told his constituents in 1879, "The Conservative party have done more for the working classes in five years than the Liberals have in fifty."

So Disraeli married conservative caution, respect for tradition and respect for the individual to policies that are more typically advocated by Leftists.  It was a brilliant piece of centrism that kept him in power and enabled him to preside over a  peaceful and immensely influential Britain.  He kept the revolutionaries and other wreckers out of power and saved the best of British traditions. He called his policies "One Nation Conservatism" and Boris to has adopted both the term and a modern version of the policies concerned.  He will keep the wreckers out of power if that is all he does -- but just that is immensely beneficial. He will be very good for Britain.  American conservatives know how poisonous their present Left is. It was, if anything, worse in Britain

Just look at Al ‘Boris’ Johnson’s victory speech on Friday morning. Anthony Blair or Gordon Brown could have made it. There’s a red-green pledge of ‘carbon-neutrality’ by 2050. This means pointlessly strangling the economy by destroying efficient power generation, while making you pay for windmills through higher gas and electricity bills. Meanwhile, China sensibly continues to depend on cheap, reliable coal.

There’s a promise of ‘colossal new investments in infrastructure’. This means huge, inefficient projects such as HS2, which do no good, cost billions and hugely overrun their budgets and timetables – again at your expense.

There’s a promise of a ‘long-term NHS budget enshrined in law, 650 million pounds extra every week’. This is a crude submission to the lobby that imagines that the only thing wrong with the NHS is its budget. In truth, we could spend every penny the country has on it and it still would not work as it is supposed to.

And there’s the usual thoughtless, ignorant rubbish about police numbers. Please. The problem with the police is not how many of them there are. It is the fact that they spend their time doing the wrong things, and refuse to return to the simple, solitary foot patrol, which is the reason for their existence.

What did you think it meant when Mr Johnson appeared standing in front of a backdrop inscribed with the words ‘The People’s Government’, a phrase that could have been concocted by Blair’s mental valet, Alastair Campbell?

What did it mean when he then said: ‘In winning this Election we have won the votes and the trust of people who have never voted Conservative before and people who have always voted for other parties. Those people want change. We cannot, must not, must not, let them down. And in delivering change we must change too. We must recognise the incredible reality that we now speak as a one-nation Conservative Party literally for everyone from Woking to Workington.’



The Left can never admit that they got it wrong

UK: Jeremy Corbyn has doubled down on his support for Labour's wildly left-wing policies despite the party's spectacular election defeat.

The outgoing opposition leader grudgingly shouldered some personal responsibility for the catastrophic collapse in votes, but used two newspaper columns to pin the blame on Brexit and the media.   

Labour suffered its worst performance at the polls since 1935 after Boris Johnson reduced the party's Red Wall of traditionally northern strongholds to rubble.

While accepting the result was 'desperately disappointing', Mr Corbyn said he was 'proud' of the radical anti-rich and spending spree platform he stood on during the campaign.

Insisting his tax-hiking government blueprint was popular, he wrote in the Observer: 'I am proud that on austerity, on corporate power, on inequality and on the climate emergency we have won the arguments and rewritten the terms of political debate.

'But I regret that we did not succeed in converting that into a parliamentary majority for change.



Very Quietly, Democrats Cave on Funding Border Wall in New Spending Bill

Congress reached a "deal in principle" to fund the government through next year, a deal that includes at least some funding for the president's proposed border wall. This after Democrats solemnly swore they would not vote for "one dime" of wall funding.

The Hill:

There were some indications that Democrats gave ground on the wall, moving from the zero-funding position they took in their original version of the bill.

Following a Wednesday meeting with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Lowey acknowledged that they may lose some votes on the left.

“Not everyone can vote for the bills, and we just need enough votes to pass, and I’d like to get the majority of Democrats, at least. And I hope we get some Republicans to support the bills, because it’s always good to have bipartisan support,” she said.

It's not likely that too many Democrats will advertise the fact that their leaders completely caved to Trump and that they betrayed their far-left supporters. Otherwise, the government will shut down and no one wants to see who gets blamed by the voters for it.

Trump still had to do a little horse-trading to get his wall funding.


The White House signaled in negotiations it would accept significantly less money -- the current level of $1.375 billion -- than requested on the border wall in exchange for maintaining the authority to transfer funds from Pentagon accounts to finance new wall construction, according to people involved in the talks. That agreement made it into the final deal, a source familiar with the talks said. The deal does not include any money backfilling the $3.6 billion in military construction funds the administration transferred earlier this year to fund the wall -- a key priority for Democrats.
The spending bill, as usual, makes a mockery of good government and sound government fiscal policy.

The bipartisan foursome of the top appropriators reached the agreement after meeting in the Capitol on Thursday, capping a day of harried negotiations, proposals and counter proposals that will significantly curtail the threat of a government shutdown. Staff will work through the weekend to produce the final legislation



Wisconsin Judge Rules More than 200,000 Voter Registrations Should Be Tossed

A Wisconsin judge has ruled that more than 200,000 voters who failed to respond to an October mailing, flagging them for having potentially moved, must have their names stricken from the registration rolls.

A lawsuit, filed on behalf of three Wisconsin voters by the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL), alleged that the Wisconsin Election Commission was not following the law when they allowed a two-year grace period to go by for residents who had moved to change their address. The commission sent a mailer asking people to update their addresses. About 234,000 failed to respond in the 30-day window.

The judge, Paul Malloy, denied a request by Election Commission attorneys to put his decision on hold. He ordered the Commission to follow the law requiring voters who didn’t respond to be deactivated.

Instead of obeying the law, the WEC sued.

Epoch Times:

“Instead of reversing course, the Wisconsin Election Commission has stubbornly doubled down. This lawsuit is about accountability, the rule of law, and clean and fair elections.”
The case is important for both sides ahead of the 2020 presidential race in narrowly divided Wisconsin, which President Donald Trump won by fewer than 23,000 votes in 2016. Liberals fear the voters who could be purged are more likely to be Democrats. Republicans argue allowing them to remain on the rolls increases the risk of voter fraud.

The WEC, which has an equal number of Republicans and Democrats, is fighting the lawsuit. It argues that the law gives it the power to decide how to manage the voter registration list.

This seems a pretty straightforward house cleaning task that in normal times wouldn't get a second look from anyone. But, of course, it's seen by the left as "voter suppression" because dead people and people who have moved -- perhaps to another state -- didn't respond to the mailer.

I guess most of the dead people are Democrats.

Malloy gave a sensible reason for his ruling.

“I don’t want to see anybody deactivated, but I don’t write the legislation,” Malloy said. “If you don’t like it, then I guess you have to go back to the Legislature. They didn’t do that.”
If you think the law suppresses votes, then change the law. Malloy isn't a liberal judge who believes you can just make the law up as you go along.

As of Dec. 5, only about 16,500 of those who received the mailing had registered at their new address. More than 170,000 hadn’t responded, and the postal service was unable to deliver notifications to nearly 60,000 voters.
If the post office can't deliver the mail to an address where you're registered to vote, that's a pretty good sign that you've moved or are dead. But we should keep them on the rolls because...Democrats say so.

The Democrats on the commission claim that the last batch of people who were dropped from the rolls under similar circumstances was confused and angry and that there were complaints. No word if they have any proof at all of any of that.

With registering to vote so ridiculously easy -- same-day registration is allowed in Wisconsin -- you have to wonder why there's any controversy here at all. The reason is simple: it allows Democrats to scare voters into thinking that Republicans don't want them to vote. Maintaining accurate and up-to-date voter registration rolls is critical to holding a clean election.

So why are Democrats so hysterically opposed?



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