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Obama in the Whitehouse…

Unlike many, well, most of my compatriots, I am not filled with a deep sense of gloom and foreboding at the prospect of the most left wing president since FDR gaining the Whitehouse. In truth, I can see many reasons to think it may well be a far better outcome than if a Big State Republican like McCain won.

Of course Obama will bring an avalanche of policies that will be truly appalling and quite wicked, of that I have no doubt, much like his predecessors in office in that respect. As the global economy continues to come unglued, everything Obama does to deal with the mounting crises will in fact make things worse. Civil liberties will be hammered, all in the name of ‘fairness’, and the flood of regulations pertaining to every aspect of economic life will grow into a drowning ocean.

And that is actually the good news.

Why? Because in truth the Republicans under John “I support the bailout” McCain would scarcely have done much better. The economic global meltdown is only just starting to roll: if you think the sub-prime mortgage crisis was the biggie, just wait until you see the fallout from the fun and frolics of the impending mess in other areas, such as debt swaps. This is all going to get worse, a lot worse, and Obama is going to do absolutely everything to dig the holes deeper. Looking back on this period ten to twenty years from now, the Republicans crying into their beer tonight will be saying “thank Christ it was not us in office then”.

The lesser evil is not going to win this time and much as it may not seem that way now… or any time soon I suspect… in the long run this has a far far better chance of leading to the rebirth of a genuine pro-liberty, pro-market political culture, something which the gradual incremental surrender of recent times made impossible (such as the ‘pragmatic voting’ of people who want a smaller state for Republican candidates who ended up growing the regulatory state).

Many will find the glee of the statist left over the next few days and weeks hard to endure, but to be honest I have been walking around with a grin all day. Finally the era of gradualism is over and the masks are going to come off. The USA has voted for statism and it is going to get exactly what it voted for at a juncture in history where it will very quickly be impossible to hide the cost of those votes.

Obama is not the start of a new era, he is the death knell for the old one.

119 comments to Obama in the Whitehouse…

  • Ethan

    We can only hope that you’re right; historically, when the state is given power, it rarely gives up that power.

    Change is coming.

    Khomeini brought change too.

  • Laird

    So did Hitler, Mussolini, Lenin and Mao.

  • Its a great day that the US elected a minority President. Its a bloody disasterous day that they elected a socialist ignoramous.

    Great post none the less.

  • I have trouble agreeing with your optimism. In fact, all I see is another increment of the ratchet. Despite hiccups like Maggie Thatcher I see no sign that Britain, or Europe, is rejecting the ever increasing lavels of statism, and on this basis I hold little hope that the USA will either, in the years after Obama.

  • Stephanie

    I sincerely hope you’re right. My worry is that, even when the government’s bills come due, people’s opinions about the state won’t change, and things won’t really get better. Spending will get cut back, but only as little as possible, and the majority of the population will still deem it right and proper that the state does ten thousand things.

    Then again, I’ve always been a pessimist.

  • Joe in Mourning

    Gloom: What else could their be on the eve of the death of the Free Market.

    The media will coddle Obama no matter how gravely he injures of liberties; and our country’s status as the leader of the free world has begun its rapid decline.

    The OP is sadly mistaken. There is no hope, there is only blind optimism.

  • Jeevan

    Perry,

    I sincerely wish you are correct and in some ways, I actually see this silver lining too. My issue with the scenario playing itself out is that I am not willing to wreck America to teach the lefties or the Republicans a lesson.

    Obama’s policies, if he does plan to enact them, will have a negative effect on America’s economic growth, to say the least.

  • dWj

    Indeed, at least now I don’t have to hear about how everything bad is due to “8 years of free-market laissez-faire capitalism” that I somehow missed.

    Besides, the grapes were probably sour, anyway.

  • Stephanie

    My issue with the scenario playing itself out is that I am not willing to wreck America to teach the lefties or the Republicans a lesson.

    I suspect America was doomed either way. All the awful things that Obama wants to do would have happened eventually anyway. (Though a McCain victory would have at least been much less obnoxious. Ugh, I don’t even want to think about the gloating.)

    Maybe Perry’s right, then, and state expansions coming hard and fast is the lesser of many evils. I still don’t think it will end up being anything but an evil, though.

  • Well, my mother keeps telling me that he can’t be as bad as Carter. I’ll just have to hope it’s true – and get on with it if it’s not.

  • Ian B

    I agree with Couinting Cats and disagree with you Perry, though I have to say that I don’t think anything encouraging is likely to happen anyway in general. The Statism movement has been winning for the past century or more, and has already effectively won; unlike many for instance I don’t see Thatcher/Reagan as any kind of reversal or even significant slowing down of the State Express.

    ISTM many libertarians have this belief similar to marxists that “the system will destroy itself”. Communism will fail, inevitably, and then we’ll have liberty, just as capitalism is supposed to fail, and then we’ll have communism. Neither is true, because there are no agreed definitions of failure. If Communusm/Statism whatever does reach a point where it spontaneously collapses, it will only do so at such point that there is literally nothing left to save; the state, the country, the nation, the people, whatever, will have disappeared too (which may be the ultimate destiny of the EU, as with the Western Roman Empire).

    People say “communism fell” as if that proves the point, but it didn’t. The USSR, one communism, fell apart, but only because a leader gained power who let it do so, and because there was something outside to oppose it and offer a different path. The progressive totalitarianism in which we now live is not the same. It is international, effectively a global hegemony, and bound together by the beliefs of millions. It will not “just fall” however bad things get. Most people will not even recognise that it is to blame, just as most people think the current market turmoil is “the failure of capitalism”.

    We’re in for a very hard time, IMHO, and prospects for salvation are bleak.

  • The Wobbly Guy

    Perry, I disagree. The next few years, no matter what Obama does, when it turns out badly, the press will blame Bush for his past policies. When it turns out well, they’ll credit Obama.

    We saw that with Clinton and Bush; we still seeing it today, albeit in reverse order. Clinton gets the credit for anything that goes well; Bush gets the blame for everything that goes sour, even 9/11.

    Obama’s likely support for the ‘Fairness’ Doctrine will help ensure this. While alternative views may not be completely destroyed, they’ll be driven underground, and hence be harder to be heard.

    What about education? Obama’s friend Ayers is heavily involved, and seems bent on inculcating his views in the future generations. Even if everything tanks, will the young of the US be even able to understand the reasons behind failing? Or will they simply sprout the party line because that is what they have been taught? Throw in political correctness, and it gets worse.

    Add in voter fraud, the fact that the new President isn’t likely to do anything about it, and the problem becomes FUBARed. They won’t be so stupid as to have 90% support for their candidate. Just 55%, which translates to landslides, but enough for the stupid right wingers to hope.

    When you have the laws, the media, education, and the government all working against you, you’re going down no matter what. In many ways, it’s a takeover more insidious and in some ways even more awe-inspiring than the communist revolutions of the 20th century.

    By maintaining the trappings of democracy and fooling the populace into believing the sanctity of the secret ballot, while controlling the media, education, and the government, the Gramscians(whether they know it or not) have made sure that it would be nearly impossible to dislodge them from power.

    USA, welcome to the perpetual Democratic Socialist majority.

    What about the Republicans? They will see that a slight tilt back to the right(aka Palin) brought them nothing but grief. They’ll take it as a signal that they’re not centrist (socialist) enough.

    How do you fight the Gramscians? I’ve yet to hear anybody articulate a coherent plan.

    That’s it. I’m pinning my hopes on China. I don’t care if the Chinese are authoritarians. They believe in capitalism, and I’m throwing in with them.

  • Mike Jackson

    I’ve been an Obama hater since I learned about his church and his mentor, Rev. Wright. With that said, I can’t say I am impressed with anyone who thinks that a disasterous term will, in the end, be good for America. And I assume that conservatives, unlike liberals and some libertarians, are wholeheartedly pro-American.

  • Andrew X

    Counting, et al….

    Your thoughts are on the edge of something I have been mentally nibbling on of late.

    Namely, your thoughts are that we (US) are going down Europe’s route, that once you go there, there is little going back, etc etc.

    But there is a difference. Perry does not mention it, but says it obliquely.

    The difference is… when Europe and others go / went that route, there was always a foundation behind them that did not follow. An economic and military one, called the USA. That foundation enabled them to take that very route, in the way that (condescension alert!) a parent’s support enables that 19-year-old to take to the streets and curse “The Man”, and then go home to a soft bed.

    Well, what if that parent is suddenly gone? What if that parent decides to start smoking dope, going to concerts, donating ALL their money to peacey, hopey, changey causes instead of… say the mortgage and insurance bills.

    If that 19 year old is genuinely intellegent, he will realize that his foundation is gone. If his bong catches the house on fire, or the bank comes calling, he is homeless. If there is no money for food, he will eat out of a dumpster. If he has no health insurance, he’ll get the cheapest health care available, if any, and if he gets addicted to his vices, God help him now, because the gutter awaits. There ain’t no one left to bail him out. Nobody. ‘Cause Mom and Dad are out feeling good, having fun, and saving the world… not him.

    So that is kind of what Perry is saying, I believe. Mr. Obama, whom I profoundly hoped would lose, will loose his hopey changeyness on the world. Many had better hope those vibes will stop Iranian missiles, and finance Euro-socialism, ’cause neither one will come from these shores any more. Doesn’t even matter if we wanted to. The sinews will be gone.

    Live with that.

  • Oddball52

    I’m afraid you’ve also overlooked the Supreme Court. I predict that in the next 2 years Ginsburg, Stevens, Breyer, and maybe even Souter will retire so that Obama can replace them with Red Diaper Justices. We’re in for 30 years of judicial activism and incrememtal loss of liberty, just when we had a chance to turn it around. Who knows–maybe Kennedy will go ahead and retire, too and make it a clean sweep. It will be all Roberts, Alito, Scalia and Thomas can do to keep the clown show in some kind of check. I’m not optimistic.

  • Peg C.

    The tough thing is for those of us over 50 who will most likely not live to see the U.S. climb out of the morass. 70 million boomers starting to retire now and for the next 20? years pretty much ensures disaster. Republicans would slow the train before the crash; Democrats will definitely speed it up. My other worry is for the 2012 election, in which almost assuredly all our illegal aliens now will be either legal or at least able to vote then. Will another Republican get elected president ever? Maybe, but my bet is no. Nukes going off MIGHT change this. What a choice.

    I also believe our threat of terrorist attack on the homeland just increased fourfold, and I think Israel had better ready themselves for Armageddon. I hope Iraq is ready to be on their own as well.

    I really feel for our military. This idiot is no more capable of serving as Commander in Chief than Bill Ayers is and what an ultimate insult. I know troops serve the country, not the president, but look for many to leave service (and good luck finding civilian jobs).

  • MikeT

    You are right about one thing, that is certain. The socialist policies promoted by Hussein will extend the coming recession for years. However, the near total control of the media by leftists mean that that fact will never see the light of day.

    I think the ideologues (I cannot bring myself to call them judges) Hussein appoints to the bench will be the worst we have ever seen with regards to real individual liberties and the constitution.

    The only bright side to this is the utter desolation of the go along/get along dumb ass Republicans in the House and Senate. Maybe now the Republican party will understand that this is war and–like a knife fight–there are no rules in war. Particularly against an evil like the left.

  • Max

    I will withhold judgement until I see how well Obama organizes the war crimes trials of Bush, Cheney, and everyone else likely to be opposition. His advisor Bill Ayers can dust off that plan that was to kill 25,000,000 Americans.

  • Tim

    Yes, yes… the bright side is that conservatives will escape their ill-gotten blame for the wishy-washy, weak-spined attitudes of a people satisfied to rest on the laurels of those who labored long before them. There is the possibility that such people will see the dramatic degradation of the fruits of those labors in the work of this new liberal phase and remember the necessity of labor — then again, who will remain to train them in the labor?

  • Pink Pig

    You certainly have a point. We shall never know what kind of President McCain would have been, and it is certainly possible that the Republicans (read: conservatives, if you wish, or even libertarians) would have been blamed for any of a number of big government inspired catastrophes.

    Still, I wonder whether the US will remain a bastion of free enterprise, as it has been for my entire life and then some. It’s possible that McCain was a lot like Bush Fils, or Bush Pere, or (gasp) Bob Dole.

    Maybe the next time the Republicans (at least) will nominate somebody with actual executive experience, at least a Mayor if not a Governor. OTOH, maybe being a Governor is no great shakes, if Massachusetts is anything to go by. I might settle for a Hollywood actor (preferably B-movies).

  • Eric

    I agree with Counting Cats. The reason we’re at this juncture is more people live off the federal government than actually pay taxes. Over time people forget how to be independent – look at the multigenerational welfare families.

    The response to a failure of expanded government will be yet more government. Eventually, of course, it will all look and feel much like the old Soviet Union, and will collapse in the same way. But that will take a century.

  • punditius

    The country has been taken over by a combination of the non-productive and the parasites. Together, they constitute the New Majority. They will immediately take steps to increase their number, in order to secure their continued electoral success.

    But when we reach the point where the burden of their weight on the economy leads to collapse, the people will not turn back to self-reliance and liberty. They will look for a Leader, and we will no longer be free.

  • Allison

    yeah, because things have worked out so well for Russia since communism there collapsed. Liberty’s reigned!

    but i appreciate optimism. it’s better to teach my children that hard work matters than that it doesn’t, even if the latter is true currently through theft.

  • Allison

    yeah, because things have worked out so well for Russia since communism there collapsed. Liberty’s reigned!

    but i appreciate optimism. it’s better to teach my children that hard work matters than that it doesn’t, even if the latter is true currently through theft.

  • Pink Pig

    The Dems will devote the first 6 months of their insurgency to payback. It’s certainly possible that this will turn off some of their supporters, not to mention the people who couldn’t figure out whether Obama or McCain was more pro-life. If it follows the path of the first 6 months of the Clinton administration, then the Republicans will win big time in 2010, and all the grand plans of the socialists will be set aside.

  • Allison

    yeah, because things have worked out so well for Russia since communism there collapsed. Liberty’s reigned!

    but i appreciate optimism. it’s better to teach my children that hard work matters than that it doesn’t, even if the latter is true currently through theft.

  • lucifer

    I will now start answering knocks at the door with a gun in hand. Can’t be too careful. Glad my front door has lots of glass. Now, any forced entry is a different story. i sleep lightly. If anyone tries to break in in the middle of the night, I assume it is criminals. They will be dealt with accordingly. One hint- I sleep like a baby. I will most likely be awake.

  • gerald berke

    Wow: you guys liked Bush! You like what he’s done! You think the country is better after 8 years of Bush.
    If Bush was a victory, I can only think of Pyrrhic victories and the cry “One more such victory and we are undone!”
    It must be that if Obama cannot meet his goal of unifying a people who insist on being divided. But perhaps those people will be reduced and contained in their own bitter salty pond to moan and curse amongst themselves and decry the success that they see as failure.
    Heavens. You offer little, or nothing, of value.

  • MarkJ

    To the above folks. Read and heed the words of Thomas Paine. You only need change a word or two to realize Paine’s observations are as true today as they were in 1776:

    THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated. Britain, with an army to enforce her tyranny, has declared that she has a right (not only to TAX) but “to BIND us in ALL CASES WHATSOEVER” and if being bound in that manner, is not slavery, then is there not such a thing as slavery upon earth. Even the expression is impious; for so unlimited a power can belong only to God.

  • On the whole of the world, recent history favors capitalism’s increased use as a tool of economic management–I don’t fear the negation of this long term trend. A colleague recently reminded me that the minute we accepted income taxes in this country we entered a small socialist pact. Laissez-faire versus Fabian socialism: it’s all a matter of degree around the world.

    Another apparent long term trend which I have not heard any discussion of at all lately is the weakening of the national state here and around the globe. At the same time borders everywhere are becoming more porous, economic systems are becoming less distinct from one another and communication networks are merging, national institutions are “fighting back” by attempting to compensate by “growing larger.” Adding insult to injury to national institutions is the fact that money itself may even be suffering a bit of loss of relevance (though probably never complete) in the face of open source software, open hardware, ever increasing rate of technological innovation and continued “race to the bottom” in terms of the cost of manufacturing anything, anywhere (yes, this will even impact China in the not too distant future). I expect the appearance of the strengthening of governments in the face of actual weakening.

    As for such luxuries like privacy, I highly recommend David Brin’s “The Transparent Society” for a good primer on the types of changes that are actually taking place versus the changes we wish would be taking place (or not taking place).

    Where will all this lead, Obama or not? The answer to this question I do not have and I do not see any good ideas being put forth by anyone lately. I would not be surprised if one day we look back upon the election of Obama as one of the last gasps of mega-statism before something else started to take its place.

  • I’ve been waiting for this post from Perry ever since we debated months ago here at Samizdata whether or not the ideals of libertarians would be better represented by voting for the lesser of the two inevitable evils.

    Perry is right in that America can withstand another socialist president due to the fundamental nature of the people that live here.

    I was never comfortable with McCain, despite the fact that he was the only available option if one wanted to hold back the incoming tide of the “fairness doctrine” and here’s why.

    In America, you can succeed, but you can also fail. And many times that failure is spectacular. There is no greater argument for those who promote libertarian ideals than the failure of the ideals that oppose it. And Obama is going to fail spectacularly.

    This medicine may taste quite awful on the way down, but the fact is that it is the only available solution which will cure the disease.

    And hey, now France likes us again, so WIN-WIN, right?

  • Peg C.

    Pink Pig, about the only thing I’m finding comfort in is thoughts of a vicious backlash in 2 or 4 years. I really have my doubts, though. It’s really not healthy to be optimistic only for tumult and chaos (borrowing from El Rushbo here). Another American Revolution is not an impossibility.

  • Ben Franklin

    The world has always looked to the US for hope and for an example of what freedom is and what liberty can achieve. Where now will the US look? Where on earth is freedom valued as much as it once was in the US?

    There is no going back from socialized medicine. We will have it and unfortunately I am young enough that I will be on the receiving end of its tender embrace. I had hoped to put this day far enough into the future that I would be dead or dying before it occurred.

    We have a dunce for a president elect who thinks it is actually a good idea to bankrupt the coal industry and ban drilling for oil at a time when the world needs ever more energy and our citizens are strapped to pay for what supplies we have. We have a man morally vacuous enough to proclaim that the capital gains rate will need to be raised even if it brings in less revenue for the government and puts a drag on the economy because it is a matter of “fairness.” We have a man leading the free world who does not value freedom in any form and who has no understanding at all of the principles on which the United States is based. We have a man in charge of prosecuting a war on a group who attacked our capitol who is a friend and ideological kindred spirit of another man who has attacked our capitol. We have a man who has threatened to force our children into involuntary servitude programs and to allow newborn children who are unwanted to be left to die from exposure. We have a man who has said he will create an army of civilians as well funded and equipped as the US military to… well to do what exactly? No one knows and no one in the compliant press has bothered to ask.

    All of this and Perry says that it is just fine because the blame will get laid at the right doorstep. And then what? You can flap your arms all you want once you have jumped from the precipice and it will avail you nothing.

  • wlpeak

    Hey he won. Have some shred of dignity and magnanimity.

    As we are sometimes found of saying around these parts, A little rebellion now and then is a good thing… well maybe the updated version is that it is better to take a quicker, harsher, solution than to wallow in a slow and certain concession.

    Take your medicine and regroup. Losing every now and then has a great cleansing quality.

  • JZ

    I can’t be optimistic. I don’t already have a lot of money because I’ve been careful and tried to save it and invest it. Well, I guess I was the idiot for trying to do the right thing! I should have signed up for a massive loan I could never repay and then demanded my check; after all, if I had done that some other sucker who’d been prudent could pay for my house! It’s not a total loss though — now I get to hear what a greedy racist bastard I am for the next few years.

    Good luck to everyone who lives in Israel. Obama is not your friend. I truly pray for you.

  • I fear the ongoing erasure of history.

    I supported and still support the current Iraq War on humanitarian grounds. Had we not have gone to war more Iraqis would have died by now than Iraqis and Americans combined as a result of the war. A true tyrant and his crazy, tyrannical sons would have weakened the “political capital” of this country more than what we lost by actually going to war. The market for nuclear and biological weapons would be stronger today. And so on.

    It may take a generation or two before historians can start analyzing the war in objective terms once again. At least I hope they will be able to. That is I hope that the real history hasn’t been completely purged.

    Of all the failings that an Obama presidency could entail I fear this one the most because it doesn’t rely on his election alone in order to occur. Most of the people in this country, nay the world, today seem to be willing conspirators in that effort. (This may in fact be a visceral reaction to the gradual weakening of national institutions. That is a discussion for another time.)

  • Michael Adams

    Well, there are two ways to institute a “Fairness doctrine.” One is by executive order, which would bring instant screams of “stifling criticism of his regime.” The other is by statute, and that can be blocked by the filibuster. As long as Limbaugh, et al, are still able to point out that we are in a disaster exacerbated by government action, and really, that the O guy is quite clueless, having only his stupid Marxist theories to substitute for knowledge or thought, we have a fighting chance. We really do have more bourgeois people and a tradition of bourgeois values than Russia. We lost the White House, but not our lives. We can rebuild.Yes, we can. Heh!

  • Johnathan Pearce

    I hope Perry is right; but we should remember that the Great Depression ended in war and another 30 years of Big Government, with a relatively short intermission in the Thatcher/Reagan years and even that was hardly much of a pullback. And yet today people still talk about FDR as a hero, not as the man who deepened and prolonged the impact of the Wall Street Crash.

    I am a bit spooked by Obama’s former role as a “community organiser”: it has a touch of the Khmer Rouge about it.

  • Michael Adams

    Well, there are two ways to institute a “Fairness doctrine.” One is by executive order, which would bring instant screams of “stifling criticism of his regime.” The other is by statute, and that can be blocked by the filibuster. As long as Limbaugh, et al, are still able to point out that we are in a disaster exacerbated by government action, and really, that the O guy is quite clueless, having only his stupid Marxist theories to substitute for knowledge or thought, we have a fighting chance. We really do have more bourgeois people and a tradition of bourgeois values than Russia. We lost the White House, but not our lives. We can rebuild.Yes, we can. Heh!

  • nick g.

    What a wanker Pain was! All that blather about ‘service to your country’. That’s where the conservatives get it from! Not ‘stand up for your rights’, but ‘What you can do for your country!’
    Can’t you give us something to inspire us?

  • Koblog

    War. It inevitably follows the promise of peace in our time.

    And false messiahs tend to end up being hanged from a lamp post.

    Think Mussolini.

  • mr_ed

    This season has been like a video played in slow motion of a head-on automobile collision – one traveling at least 150 kph to the left, and the other poking along to the right. It’s been so painful to watch it unfold, and yet I just couldn’t turn away.

    It’s not quite over, no. I’m going to hang in there and watch the high-level appointments of this man with horribly dysfunctional judgment. I know it’d be logical to make Distinguished Professor Bill Ayers Secretary of Education, but I’d sure be tickled (in a cynical, ironic way) to see him as Secretary of Homeland Security.

  • I fail to see, re Andrew’s comment, what electing a minority has to do with anything. You should elect someone capable of doing the job. I thought race wasn’t supposed to play into it. Might as well say, ” it is a great day when America elects a total fascio-socialist idiot”…because that is what is relevant. Not skin color.
    Apparently anyone CAN become president here. Sad.

    The boomers are as, or more, entitled than the gen-x, gen-y kids they run down all the time. This election was brought to you by a lot of old people who want more for nothing, because the social security that they get out of their grandchildren’s work isn’t enough for their voracious appetites. My parents are a great example. They don’t see or they don’t care that everything they think they deserve for free is paid for by the hard work of their grandkids, who then can’t afford a house.

    Maybe it will finally be a brave new world when the entire boomer generation is 6 feet under. I say this as a 50+ year old.

  • Well, hell, fellas; you’re in territory which is impossible to predict! We certainly did snap off the ratchet handle after Carter, but it wasn’t done by half-hearted defeatists.

    I foresee doom which breeds renewal. Or not renewal. They are both obviously possible! I suggest that us would-be self reliant freedom lovers use a program like the KGB has been using for 40-odd years (apparently successful, given today’s results). Poison the little bits that make up the whole, build attractive alternatives, refrain from sounding like a bitter Pilger; it just turns people off. And always educate when possible.

    Nobody said it would be easy, and I guess it will always help to remember it’s a revolution, not an adjustment.

    sigh. Trying not to gnash my teeth or get drunk.

  • It makes me kind of sad that I don’t believe in hell anymore, because there are going to be so many people who belong there. In 4 years someone should do a mock-revision of Dante’s Inferno, and we take votes for who belongs where. It is going to be a very, very corrupt four years.

  • Ugh

    Chicago is the murder capital of America, despite NYC having 3X the people.

    Rahm Emmanuel as WH Chief Of Staff; Bill Daley in Cabinet.

    There’s an outside chance that Obama is indicted for the Rezko lawn before he even takes office. No, I’m lying.

    Statists can’t fail; statists fail upwards.

  • Death Knell?

    One can hope.

    The Party of Lincoln, and of Reagan, is in shambles.

    In the years since The Contract With America the Party has lost its way.

    Bush 2 was a disaster, despite the successes of The War Against Terror.

    John McCain, despite the great pick of Sarah Palin, did not run a winning campaign, at least not until it was much too late.

    The Republican Party MUST get its house in order, starting tomorrow, and toss out on their Ass anyone who is unable, or unwilling to return to its successfull ideological roots.

    We may not agree on everything, but we must strive to agree on the important things.

    Once that is done then, and only then, can the campaign to recapture the White House, and both Houses of Congress, begin.

  • Social Realist

    You can’t fight the tide, so I’m off tomorrow morning to sign up for a job with President-Elect O’Bama’s new Civilian Internal Security Force.

    If you can’t beat them, join them. *Then* beat them.

  • Oh bullshit. You know, it’s crap like this and half-hearted support and constant carping against McCain by “conservative” blogs deserves a good bit of the blame for the loss. Yeah, Obama will name better judges than McCain. Yeah, Obama will veto the Dems excesses. Yeah sure, Obama will defend the US by taking the battle to the terrorists, not drawing down our troops and weakening our military. We can afford all that so that in 20 years we can be glad someone competent was not in charge during this crucial time, I guess, for short-term political gain.

    You are either being disingenuous, you are not serious, or you are stupid.

    Fuck Malkin, Limbaugh and all the so-called “conservatives” who withheld 100% support for McCain and who propagated smears like this post. They deserve a great deal of blame for the loss. And mushy headed thinking like this post are part of the problem. And Glenn Reynolds sure does link some crap sometimes. This is almost as bad as his obsession with pimping Katie Granju’s cretinism.

    I am pretty sick of reading all the carping about McCain by the very people who are culpable in his defeat. Let’s honor the guy and give him props for running a very good campaign against tremendous odds.

    I’d sure like to know who all you fucks thing would have been better? Romney? The opportunist who has only been a conservative since this campaign began? Huckabee or Guiliani? You hate them as much as McCain. Fred Thompson? Well, he looks like a president, even if he can’t campaign worth a shit.

    Palin? Now that the campaign is over, can we say that while a dynamo on the stump, she’s vacuous and uninformed and terrible on current events, history, geography and politics outside of Alaska. Anyone who posts here who doesn’t know what the Bush doctrine is? Or who couldn’t have answered Couric’s questions without looking like a deer in the headlights? She was a net drag, and its bull that McCain had to offer this sop to the “base” to appease them. The PUMAs came home, the “conservatives” should have sucked it up and done so as well, we might have pulled it out if they had.

    Screw all you McCain bashers who even now bash him for losing when you’re all culpable in his loss because of your petty grievances over his “impurity” as a conservative. Now what have you won? What have you proven?

    Oh, in 20 years we’ll be glad we dodged some political fall-out. Well, that’s comforting. I guess it’s worth a far-left SCOTUS and unhindered socialist control of all branches of the US government. Because you assume McCain wouldn’t have been up to the task, in your wisdom.

    Thanks “Perry”, for yet more slamming of McCain on the basis that he lacks in courage, conviction or ability by his “friends” on the right. Well, he’s a better man than any Republican leader I know, other than Bush. And he’s more of a true conservative than any of you weak sisters, “Perry”, and has more guts and courage to boot.

    Even Olivia has bigger balls than you, for Christ’s sake.

  • Frederick Davies

    I am afraid I agree with Johnathan Pearce. After FDR turned a recession into a depression, and killed the recovery from that, what happened? He got re-elected; repeatedly!
    Now the next battleground for Liberty in the USA will be the Republican party: will they fight back, or will they become friends with the State like the UK’s Conservative party under Cameron? After the many slights libertarians of all stripes have given them due to some of McCain’s policies, I doubt libertarians will have much influence on the outcome.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    docweasel writes a splendid rant, but let’s lay it out for this character why a libertarian, small-govt. person had doubts about McCain and could not vote for him.

    He is not a small government conservative. Fact. While he may have in the last few weeks realised that tax cuts were popular, the man has been a centrist all his life; the media call him a “maverick” which is in fact a pose, as Matt Welch pointed out in his excellent recent short biography of the man. He supports “national greatness conservativism”; has been careless towards the Constitution, in fact openly hostile, such as on the first amendment. He is a clear break from the Reagan/Goldwater tradition, even though those men were hardly perfect either.

    Your rant misses the point that the GOP had a field of uniformly weak candidates. Not one of them really spoke to the small government, “leave us alone” strain that has been its best aspect. Admittedly McCain was not as terrible as that idiot Huckerbee or the others, but that is not saying much. As for Sarah Palin, she is great on the campaign, but lacks the qualities to be a good governor of a whole nation. She has a future in the party, but not as a front-runner for the White House.

    Anyway, I hope Obama turns out not to be as bad as some fear. As that twit Andrew Sullivan says, “know hope”. We’ll need it.

  • Californio

    I am optimistic. Even the vaunted IRS does a very poor job of reducing the flood of missed revenue for taxation. Obama is going to restrict speech? While the veal who only only recently decided to believe in a god – named Ob_ma, may his name be praised, will bleat what they are told – Jacksonian America will not cooperate. hell, they don’t cooperate with people they agree with – double hell, they don’t cooperate with people they are related to…….and so you really really see Joe Biden rejecting capitalism and telling his credit card company patrons – “Hey! Give the little guy a break and stop charging him 36% interest!” ha ha ha ha ha ha!!! Just like rich Jews in Spain in 1492, or true believers (yes, frequently Jews again) in Moscow after the revolution – the hardest hit will be the true believers in Obamania……

  • Martin Williams

    tomorrow I’ll either stock up on ammunition for my shotgun or buy a pistol.

  • Andrew X

    Well docweasel, we’re glad to provide space for you to get it off your chest, but you are totally wrong.

    Conservatives issues with McCain were valid, but the ones you mentioned largely held their fire after the conventions. With minimal exception, they attacked Obama after the primaries, and rightly so, not McCain.

    John Derbyshire over at NRO puts it very plainly and illuminatingly – “What did it all get us, those 8 years of pandering and spending? If GWB had turned his face against new entitlements, closed the borders, deported the illegals, held the line on calls to loosen mortgage-lending standards, starved the Department of Education, and declined those invitations to mosque functions, would the GOP be in any worse shape now?”

    Much as you ask “Now what have you won”… so too does he. What HAS the GOP won by being “Democrat-Lite”? As is to be expected, if you assume the people want Democrat-Lite, and offer only that, they’ll tend to just pick the real thing anyway.

    As for Palin, in experience Joe Biden is diametrically opposed. There are few in Washington more experienced than Sarah Palin’s opponent. And it beggars the imagination to list the staggeringly stupid things Biden said just in this campaign alone. But our major media outlets simply did not care one whit. “Oh, that ole Joe! What a goofy character! What a fun VP he will be!”

    ‘American Thinker’ has a great list of reasons for the loss, but, to sum it up, there was never any solid focus on conservative principals, nor was there a willingness to hammer Obama on a number of issues until very late in the game. Those who think someone who lived conservative principals and politics much more vibrantly than McCain would not have made such errors are probably correct

    The best point you make is about the weakness of the GOP bench. Conservative voters had better look really really hard at that, or get used to exile.

  • Watcher in the dark

    I suspect that after yesterday the Republicans will go through a great deal of hand-wringing and, like the Conservatives here, come to the conclusion that to get back power they will have to be more like the ones who won the last election. Cue more regulations, increased control, add more Government, extra State.

    Statism took a huge step up the ladder in America yesterday because it can promise change even if it cannot deliver, and from now on will start to ensure – as NuLab does here – that the spin machinery makes it all seem wonderful. Sadly though there can be no going back.

  • Mike Jackson

    I think a lot of people are incorrectly assuming that a bad Obama term (insert any number of disasters, of all types) would actually be laid at his (or Democrats) feet.
    I mean, really, look how they played out the Fannies in the Media.

    You think that the Media is going to suddenly get a journalistic conscience after this victory? Bullcrap.

  • I’m not at all convinced Obama will be so bad that he obviously makes things worse — on economics, especially. I’m fairly certain what policies he’ll pursue are less Leftist than his past, but also feel nobody really knows. Because any President wants to be successful in passing a program, and the easiest programs to pass are those the other party wants, Obama will take the easy path. Also, the Dems will certainly want to find cover in ‘bipartisanship’ and get Reps on board. How and when which Reps join with which Dem programs will be very interesting.

    On the US SC, he’ll appoint more Big Gov’t, pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage judges (tho he said he was against gay marriage), so that guarantees continued culture wars.

    On Iraq, he’ll likely leave sooner, so there might be an upsurge in terrorism, but the Iraqis are probably strong enough for the politicians to choose local generals tough enough to kill terrorists — and those Iraqis who support the terrorists.

    Iran will get a nuke under Obama. If one is used, it will be Obama’s failure.

  • Andrew X

    I hope I am not posting out of turn, but this post from RedState so perfectly answers both docweasel and Watcher that I had to pass it on. It is written by Dan McLaughlin.

    One of the most unambiguous conclusions from Obama’s victory? Karl Rove was right.

    For the past 8 years, we’ve had a debate over the best political strategy for approaching a national election. There were, in essence, two contending theories.

    Karl Rove’s theory – one he perhaps never explicitly articulated, but which was evident in the approach to multiple elections, votes in Congress, and even international coalitions run by his boss, George W. Bush – was, essentially, that you win with your base. You start with the base, you expand it as much as possible by increasing turnout, and then you work outward until you get past 50% – but you don’t compromise more than necessary to get to that goal.

    Standing in opposition to the Rove theory was what one might call the Beltway Pundit theory, since that’s who were the chief proponents of the theory. The Beltway Pundit theory was, in essence, that America has a great untapped middle, a center that resists ideology and partisanship and would respond to a candidate who could present himself as having a base in the middle of the electorate.

    Tonight, we had a classic test of those theories. Barack Obama is nothing if not the pure incarnation on the left of the Rovian theory. He ran in the Democratic primaries as the candidate of the ‘Democratic wing of the Democratic Party.’ His record was pure left-wing all the way. He seems to have brought out a large number of new base voters, in particular African-Americans responding to his racial appeals and voting straight-ticket D. As I’ll discuss in a subsequent post, the process of getting to 50.1% for a figure of the left is more complex and involves more concerted efforts at concealment and dissimulation, but the basic elements of the Rovian strategy are all there.

    John McCain, by contrast, was the Platonic ideal Beltway Pundit-style candidate, and his defeat by Obama ensures that his like will not win a national nomination any time soon, in either party. McCain spent many years establishing himself as a pragmatic moderate, dissenting ad nauseum and without a consistent unifying principle from GOP orthodoxy; McCain had veered to the center simply whenever he felt that the Republican position was too far. McCain held enough positions that were in synch with the conservative base to make him minimally acceptable, but nobody ever regarded him as a candidate to excite the conservative base.

    Now, it’s true enough that the partisan environment was terribly challenging for Republicans in 2008. That’s why so many of us on the Republican side were willing to go with McCain in the first place. But here’s the thing: if you believed the Beltway Pundit theory, that shouldn’t matter. If a significant and reliable bloc of voters consistently preferred the moderate, centrist candidate over the more ideological and partisan candidate, in the same way that conservatives prefer the more conservative candidate and liberals prefer the more liberal candidate, you would have a base from which a candidate like McCain could consistently prevail against a candidate like Obama, and partisan identification would be trumped by moderation and proven bipartisanship.

    But there is no such base. Centrist, moderate, independent, voters are generally “swing” voters, always have been and always will be. Among those who are at least modestly well-informed, they are a heterogenous lot – some libertarian, some socially conservative but economically populist, some fiscally conservative and socially liberal, some isolationist and anti-immigrant, etc. It’s not possible to make of them a “base” – the only way to approach the center is to lock down the real base at one end or the other of the political spectrum, and then reach out to voters in the middle, understanding the real tradeoff that what appeals to one “swing” voter may be anathema to others.

    Of course, the dismal approval ratings of the Bush Administration at the end of its days testify to the serious arguments over whether Rove and his boss chose the wrong mix of reaches out to the center as they built their “compassionate conservative” coalition; that’s a separate debate. It is likewise a fair debate over the ways in which future conservative candidates can and should make compromises to get the GOP back to that 50.1%. But what’s not open for debate, after tonight, is the sheer futility of trying to build a coalition from the center out. Because the center won’t stand still for any candidate.

  • Sam

    Mr. de Havilland, I don’t think you understand that priority one for Obama and the Dems will be enacting irreversible things and ensuring their primacy will be permanent.

    Think of an Americanized version of the strategies employed by Hugo Chavez who was legitimately elected once.

  • Corsair

    And it was then that Nyarlathotep came out of Egypt. Who he was, none could tell, but he was of the old native blood and looked like a Pharaoh. The fellahin knelt when they saw him, yet could not say why. He said he had risen up out of the blackness of twenty-seven centuries, and that he had heard messages from places not on this planet. Into the lands of civilisation came Nyarlathotep, swarthy, slender, and sinister, always buying strange instruments of glass and metal and combining them into instruments yet stranger. He spoke much of the sciences – of electricity and psychology – and gave exhibitions of power which sent his spectators away speechless, yet which swelled his fame to exceeding magnitude. Men advised one another to see Nyarlathotep, and shuddered. And where Nyarlathotep went, rest vanished; for the small hours were rent with the screams of a nightmare.

  • Corsair

    And it was then that Nyarlathotep came out of Egypt. Who he was, none could tell, but he was of the old native blood and looked like a Pharaoh. The fellahin knelt when they saw him, yet could not say why. He said he had risen up out of the blackness of twenty-seven centuries, and that he had heard messages from places not on this planet. Into the lands of civilisation came Nyarlathotep, swarthy, slender, and sinister, always buying strange instruments of glass and metal and combining them into instruments yet stranger. He spoke much of the sciences – of electricity and psychology – and gave exhibitions of power which sent his spectators away speechless, yet which swelled his fame to exceeding magnitude. Men advised one another to see Nyarlathotep, and shuddered. And where Nyarlathotep went, rest vanished; for the small hours were rent with the screams of a nightmare.

  • Hunh, Perry makes an essentially Bolshevik argument: “The worse, the better.” Intensification of struggle & all that.

    It’s been on my mind for years.

    It might work out. We’ll see.

    I quite doubt it, though.

  • Cleanthes

    Others have alluded to this, but I shall say it clearly.

    “… where it will very quickly be impossible to hide the cost of those votes.”

    No it won’t. FDR is lauded as the man who brought America through the depression, not the man who caused and prolonged it. So it will be with Obama.

    Obama will blame Bush for his economic inheritance. We know this because we already know that the Democrats have avoided responsibility for this mess already.

    Obama is totally tied in with the organisations that caused the subprime meltdown, but the left-leaning MSM would not even consider running with this analysis.

    There will be a reckoning and you are right Perry that, without the US to act as parent to the world, there will no escaping it, but Obama and socialist policy will not take the heat for it: it will be blamed on free market capitalism and that will only accelerate the downfall.
    :-(

  • Mr. de Havilland, I don’t think you understand that priority one for Obama and the Dems will be enacting irreversible things and ensuring their primacy will be permanent.

    Oh I understand that just fine…

    Hunh, Perry makes an essentially Bolshevik argument: “The worse, the better.” Intensification of struggle & all that.

    Quite so. What I fear is our enemy’s highly effective gradualist strategies that ‘our’ side has proven so very very bad at countering, particularly since the end of the Cold War.

  • dustydog

    Does anybody have experience installing residential underground 100,000 gallon gasoline tanks? I’d like to stock up before gas hits $10/gallon, and the gas line is 4 hours long.

  • Cleanthes

    So where’s the optimism coming from then Perry?

  • Gloom: What else could their be on the eve of the death of the Free Market.

    Th Free Market was aborted before birth. Nobody can serisouly claim that we have a free market now.
    Obama will not kill the free market because it is dead already.
    He will do many bad things I am sure, but so would McCain (and probably many of the same things). They are both statists, they are both polticians and both would grab power to themselves. There is so little difference, that it does not really matter.
    From a libertarian view – the only difference is Obama sounds less likely to engage in state sanctioned murder in far off lands.

    Just as I like to remind US ‘liberals’ that JFK and LBJ escalated Vietnam, its useful to remind conservatives that Nixon introduced price controls.
    Party and ideology don’t change the nature of politicians or politics.

  • Perry: “What I fear is our enemy’s highly effective gradualist strategies that ‘our’ side has proven so very very bad at countering, particularly since the end of the Cold War.”

    Yes. It’s why I have little hope, at the historical moment, in the intensification outlook.

    I am currently in South Africa working with people who are almost uniformly Obama supporters. They’re good people. The things that I hear them saying comport well with everything I’ve ever heard on the street about Obama. They don’t know what they’re talking about. Not one bit. They have no idea in the world what they’re dealing with in Obama, and I seriously wonder whether they will ever figure it out, even after he puts them through what he’s going to.

    I don’t know what it’s going to take, Perry. In the meantime, it’s all going to be hellishly expensive.

  • Animositas

    I have conficting feelings about Obama’s win.

    On the one hand I agree with Perry, in that I believe the people who voted for Obama are going to get what they deserve – “good and hard” in the words of Mencken.

    On the other hand, I see the damage that is going to be done by a socialist President and a Congress full of willing accomplices and despair. Government never rolls back entitlement programs, a national health care plan will never be cancelled, and it will make the Social Security fiasco look like pocket change.

    No, in the end I believe this is the end of the United States as I have known it, and that is not bad just for Americans, it will be bad for the world.

  • big john

    Let’s face it, the political waters have become turbid with 8 years of wartime presidency. I think four years of a newby president mucking things up will be an excellent launch pad for a reinvigorated conservative movement. Just think of all the promises he made that he won’t be able to keep. He’ll simply morph into the newest version of George Bush in the minds of the voters. Besides, the Dem’s have been howling about how inept the republicans have been, now its their turn to show what a superb job they can do :)

  • WPZ

    Let us hope that the new president is as ineffectual, disinterested, and self-absorbed as president as he was as a senator.
    There’s the hope he’ll be spending so much time admiring himself in the (television) mirror he won’t be troubled to actually do anything.
    As he always has.

  • Chester White

    The big problem is that Obama will nominate, and the Senate will confirm, a slew of 35-year old left-wingers as Federal judges, and we will have them in office for 50 years.

    Severe trouble ahead.

  • Corsair, is that a Lord Dunsany quote? Egads, man!

    Comrade Obama will have two years to wreak legislative and financial havoc. If the stock market rebounds by 2010 elections, Obamunism will last four years, easy. If the economy tanks hard enough in 2010, enough opposition candidates will be elected to bring the possibility of gridlock. Stasis is the best that can be hoped for, and that is, in and of itself, a form of decline. Barring secession or revolution, national decline into European-style statism is irreversible.

    Obama has never been called into account; he most likely never will be. The US population has been primed to blame Bush for eight years. Why not continue blaming him for four more? Unless some of Big Media really do go under (e.g., LA Times subscriptions), they will cover for him and undermine/blacklist his critics. Joe the Plumber II, where will you hide when you dare question Comrade Obama?

    Look at the mess that is Comrade Obama’s Chicago. More Americans killed there than in Iraq; crumbling infrastructure; highest sales tax in the nation; woefully underfunded public pensions; some of the crappiest schools in the US; until knocking down Cabrini Green (and thus spreading Obama tools into neighboring states), probably the worst public housing; strict anti-gun laws; and perhaps a government system as corrupt as that in Mayor Nagin’s “Chocolate City” of New Orleans. Yet since there are no Republicans in office to blame, those not from the Chicago region might be unaware of all this, this the promise of The One.

    The only good thing I can see on the horizon is the possibility of Barry’s government legalizing marijuana (and cocaine, please, for South America’s sake). Then again, that giant armed civilian force to rival the military will need something to do, other than crack thought criminals’ heads and collect protection money.

  • …in the long run this has a far far better chance of leading to the rebirth of a genuine pro-liberty, pro-market political culture…

    In the long run, we’re all dead, unless I suppose you believe in the Singularity.

  • David

    I’m glad to see that somebody is optimistic. My own feelings are mixed.

    On the one hand, the descent to statism is generally like a ratchet, with movement in that direction difficult to reverse.

    On the other hand, I remember that Nicaragua, at one time taken over by Daniel Ortega’s Sandinistas, in a later election threw the bums out.

    (Plus, if push REALLY comes to shove and it’s military coup time, remember that our military is overwhelmingly Republican)

  • I’ve been telling myself more or less exactly what you said in this post for a few weeks in an effort to help resign myself to the inevitable. and it would work, too, were it not for the fact that we all know neither Obama nor his policies will be allowed to take the blame when things get worse. It will all be Bush’s fault long after Bush is back in Crawford clearing brushlines.

  • What a crock of total horse shit.

    Some basic history you seem to have forgotten.
    FDR was elected a few years into the great depression and like Obama will probably do, his policies only managed to prolong and worsen the crisis. We did not economically recover until WWII. Furthermore, his unbelievable naivety in dealing with Stalin, who he referred to as ‘Uncle Joe’ set up the Soviet take over of eastern Europe. Can you spell Yalta for Christ’s sake?

    None the less, FDR was and is still revered as one of our greatest presidents. His policies are still considered, by those who don’t know any better, to have been effective. This is largely due to his leftist leanings.

    Do you really think for a moment that Obama will get any less of the same kid glove treatment? If you do, call me, I have a bridge to nowhere I wantto sell you.

  • RRS

    A prediction?:

    The emerging conditions will more greatly shape, affect and control the capacities for actions by both the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. Government than the composition of either of those branches will be able to shape events. Those bodies will be more affected by circumstance than they can have effect on circumstances.

    This will largely be a result of the fact that in most democratically (factionally) formed governments, the political classes have become ( and continue to coalesce as) intermediaries for the electorate rather than as representatives in the relation of the electorate’s factional interests in the functions of governance and its coercive powers.

    Now would be a good moment to read Federalist #10 (usually cited for the discussion of “factions”), in particular pragraph 10 thereof, which reads in part:

    It is in vain to say that enlightend statesmen will be able to adjust these clashing interests and render them all subservient to the public good. Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. …….”

    Publius (Madison)

  • Some basic history you seem to have forgotten

    What nonsense. Obama is not being elected a few years into the coming depression, he has been elected right at the start and that makes a huge difference. When this gets worse, and it will, and Obama and his confreres across the globe get the printing presses rolling to try and spend their way out of the mess, they will end up doing more to discredit their world view than the people moping about today feeling sorry for themselves that a tax-and-spend statist jackanapes like McCain lost ever could.

    The candidate defeated in yesterday’s elections was also the enemy of anyone who wanted liberty and a smaller state, just as the man who won is. As far as I am concerned the best way to win the battle of ideas is to have all the people who voted for statism get exactly what they voted for just as the ponzi scheme reaches the point where it cannot be sustained any longer. And that point is no longer in the indeterminate future, it is coming at us like a freight train.

    Stop moaning and get out there and argue the case for liberty and free markets. The media doesn’t love us? Poor baby… fuck ‘em, their business model is broken anyway. Take the accelerating Crisis of Regulatory Statism ™ and smash people in the face with it intellectually, emotionally and politically. Time to get less polite, time for the big ‘This Is The World You Made and And I Hope It Chokes You’. The Big State ‘Pragmatic’ Right has just blown its own political brains out and that is a good thing.

  • I have some suggestions on how we should welcome our new president.

    First, demonize him and ascribe his motives to evil and malfeasance, not just policy differences. We should proclaim often and loudly that he is not our president, that he stole the election and he has no mandate. We should repeat false stories about him, no matter how crazy or wrong, until they are accepted as common wisdom. We should create lies and urban legends to smear him and demean him. We should ridicule any verbal slips or gaffes, and ascribe them to his native stupidity and intellectual vapidity. We should accuse him of every sin and crime under the sun and attempt to have him impeached for policy differences, which we should call crimes. We should undermine any programs he wants to pass by misstating their goals and content. We should take quotes out of context to make him seem ridiculous and to make him seem mean-spirited. We should repeat often that he doesn’t care about people who aren’t the same race as he is, and that he is only out for his own kind. We should claim that he is going to try to force a coup and take over the country by force. We should claim he’s going to lock up any dissenters. We should loudly scream about losing our rights and interfere with his speechs and disrupt any gatherings of his party. Our politicians should cynically misstate his policies to make him look bad.

    Heck, it worked for the Dems after Bush was elected in 2004, right?

  • Brad

    Personally I believe that the economic collapse compounded by absolutely the wrong kind of policies will draw out deeply buried divisions in this country, divisions and their manifestations that perhaps one who is not from the US can’t comprehend. I think in short order misery is going to spike and a radicalization will ensue. I fear that the new President will start the process on bad policies, the collapse will continue and deepen, and radicals will assassinate the President, touching off race riots. This country will soon see disorder ranking up there with the late 1850′s/1860′s.

    I really think this is going to happen. I intend on getting some means of self protection and buying gold.

    Liberty MAY be on the other side, but getting there is going to be a long, dark road to get there, and at that only a slim possibility.

  • Larry

    Roosevelt did exactly what you predict that Obama will do and ended up near the top of the list of great Presidents. As long as Obama’s rhetoric shows that his intent is pure, the media will forgive him for the consequences of his likely-to-be-disastrous policies.

  • craig

    Perry, I respectfully disagree. I think the economic hard times will all be blamed (wrongly) on free markets and repubs and the bad policy decisions that worsen the event will be explained away under the meme that govt. needs MORE regulation, MORE control, MORE taxes, MORE spread the wealth in order to rev up the economy. The Dems and the Left will astonish you in their reaction to their policy failures….they will double-down and keep blaming free markets. Your whole thesis is flawed. Once in power the Dems and left will propagandize in ways that will astound you and only then will you realize how bad the unintended consequences of your strategy are (and then it will be too late). It would have been far better to win and deal with the issues of the day head on and let the chips fall where they may.

  • Aways look on the bright side of life, is why i keep telling myself, but I can’t help thinking that this is indeed th ebeginning of the end for the second age of globalisation.

    I’m also becomming more and more convinced the arguement for limted goverenment is lost on the planet, our only hope is to start afresh in space

  • As defense analyst Colin Gray Writes in a recent book about the near-term possibilities of major conflict, “Another Bloody Century,”* when considering optimism and pessimism, “optimism is apt to kill with greater certainty.”

    – “Fear of China” by Robert D. Kaplan in The Wall Street Journal, on page A14, on April 21, 2006.

    * ISBN 0297846272

  • boqueronman

    I’ll just leave a question and some observations here.

    There appears to be two possible Obama administration scenarios (besides confusion and muddling). I agree with RedState’s McLaughlin that the Obama campaign was using Rovian tactics. If so then two outcomes are possible: (1) Obama will govern from the middle, jettisoning the leftist rhetoric, or; (2) Obama is a true-blue leftist and will govern as such.

    If (1) is what transpires how will the nutroots fanatics respond to abandoning their core principles? Not to well I suspect. This would probably also set up a conflict with a decidedly left Dem Congress. Infighting is the result. If (2) is what transpires, without, apparently, a Dem super-majority, the Repubs should be able to filibuster clear assaults on the Constitution (fairness doctrine, card checks, hard left Supremes, etc.).

    If we see (2) scenario developing, that would provide the necessary impetus for guiding the rebuilding of a politically viable conservative/libertarian franchise within the Repubs. These steps would be necessary:

    - Through out ALL remnants of Bush I and II personnel;
    - Study the election results, identify the base, construct independent voter blocks who could be targeted;
    - Speak frankly and openly with business support organizations to convince them that markets, i.e. their businesses, are under ideological attack and a strong defense requires their active and committed participation;
    - Assuming practicing Christians, especially evangelicals, are part of the base, discuss with them how to formulate a politically palatable pro-life strategy which is defensible from a scientific, secular perspective (yes, it can be done); and,
    - Create a kind of “shadow cabinet” a la the UK Parliament which can supply the “spokespersons” (and their support staff) to strategize and defend opposition positions on key issues. Since this is the U.S., the selected individuals do not have to be, and maybe shouldn’t be, members of Congress.

    These are just a few of the rebuilding steps. Assuming the U.S. is still a center right country, and has not yet become only a member in waiting of the EU, there is room to recover. But it will have to be capable of reacting quickly with a unified voice during the Obama administration. With solid control of major media and educational institutions, the reform Repubs must loudly demand an opening, find new vehicles, and be ready to speak clearly, loudly and convincingly, and perhaps most importantly educated a confused public about its principles.

    Thanks for the space.

  • Bod

    Tough call. On an emotional level, I feel that Perry’s right. I’ve had three discussions so far today along the lines of ‘as ye sow, so shall ye reap’, but looking into the blank, unseeing eyes of the people I speak to, they don’t and won’t get it. Ever.

    Being pragmatic – there’s no rolling back statism without lots of blood and societal chaos, and I can’t see that happening here in the US. We’re awfully close if not beyond having 50% of the population beholden to The State for their beer and circuses, and given that some supporters of The State will vote for it even if they aren’t net beneficiaries, we’re at, or past the tipping point. So it’s time to apply for some government subsidized Vaseline and brace ourselves.

    Tangentially, the Lovecraft quote (not Dunsany) above reminded me that Lovecraft has been called a “Futilitarian”. You can’t beat the Great Old Ones. All you can do is hold them off a little longer, maybe for long enough to reload.

    Politics and pulp horror. Ugh.

  • The Dems and the Left will astonish you in their reaction to their policy failures

    Astonish me? Hell I am counting on them to react the way you describe! I want the media to be describing how wonderful Obama is as the rats run in the streets due to uncollected garbage. In many ways large sections of the media will be the authors of their own downfall.

  • Great thread! Trackback from here. Sorry, but when I use “real” trackbacks, I get bugs up the tailpipe.

  • mb

    The key to any future conservative success will not come by engaging the socialist, U.S.-power hating left directly, but by destroying the regime running the presses and controlling the newscasts in the MSM.

    Middle America is much larger than either the politically observant left or right. Middle America doesn’t get its understanding of the world by reading blogs of the left or right. It doesn’t get its understanding of the world from listening to Rush or Hannity or Savage or Beck or Ingram or AM talk. It doesn’t get its understanding of the world by reading political journals. It doesn’t know economic theories. It doesn’t know political theories. It isn’t interested in any of this.

    It knows what it is told in the first five paragraphs of the front page stories of its local newspapers, and it knows what it is told in the FM radio news broadcasts in between country and classic rock music. It knows what it is told on the evening TV news, heard in the background during dinner while waiting for American Idol.

    Even if Barack Obama spends 4-to-1 over McCain in advertising, this spending is trivial compared to the negative advertising against Bush and positive advertising for Obama given out for free by the MSM over four years.

    Conservatives must take the battle to the owners and editors of their local rags, and to the news directors of their local radio and television stations. This is where the battle will be won.

  • Sam Duncan

    I’m afraid Cats is closer to the mark.

    Others have mentioned FDR – many of whose disastrous policies are still with us – but my immediate thought was of the post-war British government. It’s easy to forget, now that it’s the state religion, but there was substantial opposition to the NHS in the late ’40s; not least from the medical profession itself. All of its opponents’ predictions – the huge cost, the infinite demand, the way it would actually promote ill-health, rather than, as its boosters claimed, gradually eliminate it altogether – have come true. Yet 60 years on, it’s still here and these arguments are still controversial.

    One ray of hope is that four years later, the Tories were re-elected on Churchill’s slogan, “Set the people free”; clearly there was a hunger for (classical) liberal government. But they didn’t have the courage of their convictions, and proceeded to try to “manage socialism better than the socialists”. Perhaps a future American administration will have more guts.

    Wow: you guys liked Bush! You like what he’s done! You think the country is better after 8 years of Bush.

    You’re new here, aren’t you?

  • Steve-o

    My goals are set. The government is my competitor now. Under the horrific George Bush, my net worth quadrupled. I will now retire early, and move my cash into non-taxable accounts. Everything else is either in unrealized capital gains or tax-free (for now) retirement accounts that don’t have to be tapped for 8-10 years. Why should I produce a high income just to see it redistributed? I wonder how many other boomer-age small business people will take a similar course?

  • Marsha R

    No one mentions the obvious. Why not form a new government a la our founders. Convince enough people of like minds to move (while we still can) to the red state areas that are contiguous. Take local and state power with the force of our ideas and vision. Push out those who are not like minded (as has been done in California, et al.). When the US finally falls, we may still have something to offer if our ranks are consolidated and strong. Also we can engage in fighting en masse if that becomes the only option. We may actually become the new US of A. Or am I dreaming?

  • Middle America doesn’t get its understanding of the world by reading blogs of the left or right [...] It knows what it is told in the first five paragraphs of the front page stories of its local newspapers, and it knows what it is told in the FM radio news broadcasts in between country and classic rock music. It knows what it is told on the evening TV news, heard in the background during dinner while waiting for American Idol.

    None of which will be true at all in 10 years and much of which is far lass true than it was 10 years ago.

  • Thomass

    Its a good point… also, we didn’t really have a conservative movement when FDR was in. His oversteps got the ball rolling to create one… So, maybe we can restrain Obama a bit before he goes really too far.

  • thomass

    Posted by craig at November 5, 2008 02:40 PM

    “Once in power the Dems and left will propagandize in ways that will astound you and only then will you realize how bad the unintended consequences of your strategy are”

    I’m sure they know… the left over there still blames Thatcher for the NHS sucking… She left office like when?? Anyway, we just have to let everyone know very clearly when the left is doing something stupid at the time they do it… and then keep it around as a meme so people don’t forget… then after it happens, remind everyone we were right.

  • Andy Jackson

    Great post Perry, I have been thinking this way for months now. I did get upset last night that people could be so stupid, but I suspect that the real cause has to do with the looters and moochers reaching out for their goodies.

    Now we can sit back and watch the Democrat party cannibalize the American economy, write its own death warrant, and get blasted from politics for a generation.

    I have carried out every moral precept of our age. I expected gratitude and a citation of honor. I do not understand why I am being damned.” ~Francisco d’Anconia (AS, p. 143)

    But these programs were supposed to work! Why didn’t they work? ~Barak Obama (2011 impeachment hearings)

  • boqueronman –

    I think there is an option (3), which is that Obama and Pelosi form a Brown/Blair type alliance, and agree to devote most of their energies to ensuring that the Democrats have majorities in perpetuity.

  • Todd Debreceni

    I’ve been telling my Democrat friends who have been so bowled over by Obama’s hypnotic rhetoric to be careful what they wish for because they just might get it. Seems now that we all will, and when the next senatorial elections come round, we most assuredly will see the balance of power shift back toward the right, but not before much damage has been done.

  • Nick E

    Wow, you folks need to relax. Do you not remember the early years of Bush, when the media was in love with him and then turned on him? Obama is more of the same (unfortunately for all of us who live here), and I would not be surprised if the same happened to him, assuming that he and Congress run the economy into the ground.

    What would really tie the knot would be the Republican party realizing, after these 8 long years, that low taxes and small government are the reason for all the successes it’s had. Stay tuned.

  • RRS

    Steve-O (et alia) -

    Wait until you hear (and later see) what the JC Staff has dreamed up for tapping private investment accounts, pension plans and changing the tax status of IRAs, etc.

    Hey – that’s where the money is; Congress wants it, and it is the job of the Joint Committee Staff to find it.

  • It’s been an epic struggle, throughout both the Republican and the Democratic primary to the conclusion of the national election; Barack Obama’s was a hard fought victory. The protracted presidential race was also a huge diversion from the very real problems, which stem from a myriad of past political and economic blunders. Lets hope President Obama will be bigger on solutions, than he is on rhetoric. I believe the girl & the Navy guy would have been by far and away the better choice. But hey, either way you’re still being misled: http://theseedsof9-11.com

    Mr. Obama inherits markets that will not rebound; they know the bailout does not address the fundamental reasons – rampant corruption, illegal immigration, and a dependence on foreign oil – that there is a problem. Simply put, the bailout is good money after bad. Demand accountability? Not our politicians.

    In the words of one banker: We want to be free! We want to be free to do what we want to do. We want to be free to ride. We want to be free to ride our machines without being hassled by The Man! And we want to get loaded. And we want to have a good time. And that’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to have a good time. We’re going to have a party. Seriously, that’s from the 1966 movie The Wild Angels. Good advice as any. Hope it helps.

  • Mr. Obama inherits markets that will not rebound; they know the bailout does not address the fundamental reasons – rampant corruption

    The economic crisis not the product of corruption, it is the product of distorted market reacting to perverse regulatory incentives (such as meaningless accounting standards and regulatory barriers to market entry).

    … illegal immigration

    How is that relevant? Immigration only has a negative impact on state spending (such as state schools and medical assistance programs), so the problem is not immigration per se, it is again immigrants responding to perverse incentives caused by state spending

    …and a dependence on foreign oil

    a global economic crisis is fueled by US dependence on non-US sourced oil??? How does that work exactly? Oil is fungible and globally traded and the markets do not care which hole in the ground a given barrel of oil came out of. Should the US produce more oil? Sure, but the coming bad times have very little to do with that.

  • Wait until you hear (and later see) what the JC Staff has dreamed up for tapping private investment accounts, pension plans and changing the tax status of IRAs, etc.

    Quite so, and from *that* will come the political radicalism I am looking for.

  • txchick

    I have read through this at my Mom’s request. I am in my 30′s married with kids age group.

    I have to ask the question here that if you all believe that the economy can not recover then how can it be that Obama will make it worse?

    I believe at this phase of the post election that being negative about our President elect is only harming things not helping. By this I mean that the day after the election I looked at my children and told them that there will be alot of things said by people that might scare you. Today I find this true.

    I believe we should ALL be looking at what we can do to help this great nation. Including cutting into our own budgets. If we as a people expect restraint in spending in the Government then we should show this same thing to be true in our own lives.

    Someone spoke of corruption in the higher ups…. but I am here to tell you that there are millions of us that got “suckered” into subprime loans. Trusting that the Government was making sure the process was legal, we of coarse were wrong. Many of us lost our jobs, homes, and vehicles because of being lured into the line….. “everyone deserves to own”.

    I used to agree with that before this all happened to me. I personally think that either man to be elected would have failed in areas, they always do. I do not think McCain could have fixed this any better than Obama…. it will just be a faster paced road with the President Elect.

    I do not have the “gloom and doom” syndrome because I refuse to give up on America…. My children are watching and seeing that the world we live in is peril and I for one will encourage them to PRAY DAILY for our new leader.

    There are some of you who believe he does not believe in Our Lord, but that does not believe the Lord does not believe in him.

  • goy

    you forgot to mention the hebrew factor!

  • Let’s hope that our newly elected Statist wakes up the sheep of America.

  • joe

    I’m so disgusted at the amount of people I know who voted who haven’t watched an hour of the news in the past 6 months. I drove through the ghetto the day of the election, God knows those people are highly educated on the issues.

    Democracy is the poison that will slowly kill freedom.

  • I have to ask the question here that if you all believe that the economy can not recover then how can it be that Obama will make it worse?

    The economy will indeed eventually recover after several years, but Obama can certainly make it worse (i.e. prolong and deepen the slump) by harming trade with more stifling regulations and by raising taxes/printing money to ‘spend our way out of the crisis’… and these are things he will most certainly do. Do you really think the most left wing leader since the dismal FDR will actually reduce the total size of the state?

    I believe at this phase of the post election that being negative about our President elect is only harming things not helping.

    Harming how? By warning people what to expect? Statist interference in the markets is exactly what brought us the sub-prime mortgage fiasco, by giving lenders perverse politically driven incentives… and the people who took these unwise loans also cannot escape a significant measure of responsibility either. So now that the USA has an even more interventionist leader than before, do you think this sort of thing will get better?

    In the sense that I think the catastrophic policies that will be visited upon the USA will in the end prove salutary and lead to a long over due shift in attitudes, I am not ‘negative’, I am quite cheered in fact. This will be a very very expensive salutatory lesson however and I see no value in saying otherwise.

    You give the impression of someone who respects the office regardless of the man and all I will say is that is not a view I share. The one thing the USA needs badly now is some vehement, realistic and unapologetic dis-unity. There is nothing admirable about standing there with your hand over your heart if you think the ship of state is headed for an iceberg.

  • Laird

    Marsha R, what you’re proposing is already underway; check out the Free State Project. They haven’t been able to get much traction so far, but this election might give them a jump start.

  • Paul Marks

    It is true that there are many people who voted who have never watched news or listened to commentary.

    But at least it had been available to them – Fox News is not all pro bailout stuff, and talk radio allows many dissenting voices from “liberal” ideas.

    The question is will such alternatives still exist in the future?

    It is quite true that the economic policies of Obama and his friends in Congress will lead to economic decline – but that will not hurt them politically if the control information (bar a few websites that can NOT decide elections on their own).

    The true fight will be around such things as talk radio.

    If they fall things will go ill – if they stand there is hope.

    Let the fight begin.

  • Princess

    Watch Omen III. This is the President people voted for. I talked to my son and one of his friends is moving to Europe. I was thinking of going to Canada. I refuse to move and allow this tyrant to take over. Many in the White House and others holding Federal positions are leaving. African Americans who have not voted in years. Went on election day just to vote for this man. They did not know anything about the other issues. Well America’s fate is sealed. God’s blessing is not upon this decision. Usually this should be a time of joy. We are moving from bad policies to someone with good policies and sound decisions. Well i have noticed people have been gloomy and silent. Some feel they made a bad decision. Too late! Should have used intelligence not emotion. This man did nothing but brainwash everyone. I among others was not fooled.

  • Ezra

    There is no doubt that the economy is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. That people everywhere are going to be loosing jobs and that this is going to happen no matter who would have gotten the Presidency. The one thing that everyone will regret is that they voted in the President that will infringe on everyone’s right and put government control everywhere in places it shouldn’t be. The government is not what fixes American problems but rather the American People. I look through history and I see that during WWII the government was out of money and almost unable to continue the war, but through the help of the American people was able to afford the success. During that time the government didn’t make American people donate their time and money unlike our current President elect wants to do. Many things will be done that will take time to be undone but hope is not gone even with a hopeless President.

  • The one thing that everyone will regret is that they voted in the President that will infringe on everyone’s right and put government control everywhere in places it shouldn’t be

    Very true Ezra. And if McCain had won, it would still be very true.

  • Paul Marks

    Perry:

    I agree with you that the statist economic policies that the establishment (including the Republican establishment) favour will cause economic decline.

    In logic and reason people should blame the economic decline on the statism – but that will only happen if the people have information and arguments.

    And, no, the internet is not enough – even if free market people were the main force on the internet (which we are not).

    I am positive enough to believe that if people are presented with the statist and anti statist case most people will support the anti statist position (because we have the truth on our side – objective reality is an advantage).

    However, the above assumes a lot more than a few internet sites. Without things like talk radio things are not going to be good.

    So the left will attack dissenting media – it is the logical move.

    “But when the dead lay unburied in the streets people will blame the left”.

    Not if most media blame it all on the “rich” and on “reactionaries” .

    That is what you forget Perry – the mainstream media (and the academics) will NOT say “things are good” – they will say things are terrible. But they will blame it all on the “free market”/

    “Even President Obama has not really attacked the free market dogmatism that is destroying so many lives”.

    And so on and so on.

    Everyone from the Nobel Prize winning “economists” to the pop music stars will come out with stuff like this.

  • And, no, the internet is not enough – even if free market people were the main force on the internet (which we are not).

    Oh yes it is and we are a huge force on the net. I think you vastly over estimate the power of the mainstream media. Their business model is fatally and irretrievably broken and as the years go by they grow less steadily less powerful.

    The internet changes everything and I am delighted that large numbers of people used to the old paradigms are as blind to that as you are Paul, at least for now. The genie is already a great deal larger than you think and he ain’t ever going back in the bottle.

  • Paul Marks

    I hope you are correct.

  • yeah, well rightbloggers should be doing everything possible to undermine and damage Obama. Demonize him. Disrespect him. Misquote him. Attribute slips of the lip or gaffes to stupidity and let’s get a “given” established that he’s dishonest, a cretin, traitorous, criminal and evil. Distort and invent quotes and urban legends to ridicule and discredit him. It worked for the Dems. To anyone who says “let’s give him a chance” I say fuck Obama(Link).

  • It makes me kind of sad that I don’t believe in hell anymore, because there are going to be so many people who belong there. In 4 years someone should do a mock-revision of Dante’s Inferno, and we take votes for who belongs where. It is going to be a very, very corrupt four years.