National Review Co-Founder: GWB is Worst. President. Ever.

posted at 5:36 pm on December 27, 2006 by see-dubya

(Long post coming up; get comfy.)

No, not William F. Buckley. Jeffrey Hart is one of the old school National Reivew types, an English professor at Dartmouth, and no fan of the president or the neocons (whom he refers to as “Neo-Trotskyites”). I gather he’s not too tight with the current NR crowd. The New Criterion’s James Panero interviewed him for Dartmouth’s Alumni Magazine, and posted the whole thing at his blog. It’s thinky, which I like, though you might want to wade into it about a third of the way in and miss the tennis metaphor being set up.

Let me comment on three things from the interview. First, here is Prof. Hart’s definition of a “social conservative”, and just a taste of his imprecations against evangelical Christianity (which are his stock in trade), emphasis mine:

“Like the Whig gentry who were the Founders, I loathe populism,” Hart explains. “Most especially in the form of populist religion, i.e., the current pestiferous bible-banging evangelicals, whom I regard as organized ignorance, a menace to public health, to science, to medicine, to serious Western religion, to intellect and indeed to sanity. Evangelicalism, driven by emotion, and not creedal, is thoroughly erratic and by its nature cannot be conservative. My conservatism is aristocratic in spirit, anti-populist and rooted in the Northeast. It is Burke brought up to date. A ‘social conservative’ in my view is not a moral authoritarian Evangelical who wants to push people around, but an American gentleman, conservative in a social sense. He has gone to a good school, maybe shops at J. Press, maybe plays tennis or golf, and drinks either Bombay or Beefeater martinis, or maybe Dewar’s on the rocks, or both.”

So the alternative he gives to evangelical fervor is…bloodless Ivy League snobbery? Contrast Bill Buckley, who also went to an OK school and probably shops at J. Press, once said that he’d “rather be governed by the first 2000 names in the Boston phone book than by the 2000 members of the faculty of Harvard University.” Even, one presumes, if they drink Miller Lite.

Oh, Hart’s got a semantic point: what are usually called “social issues” are really moral issues, and Hart wants to abandon the field where progressives and radicals fight tirelessly to “perfect” our morality and change it into something new and unrecognizable. Come on, fellows, this fight just isn’t cricket, so let’s go play tennis and drink instead.

Second: Defending Hart is Joseph Rago of the Wall Street Journal. You remember Joe, don’t you?:

“Bush has been fortunate in his enemies,” notes Joe Rago ’05, a former editor of The Dartmouth Review and now a member of the editorial board of The Wall Street Journal. “That’s not the case with Jeff Hart. His critique of the Bush administration, whether one agrees with it or not, is probably the most rigorous, utterly principled, and intellectually stimulating ever set down.”

Possibly it is one of the better critiques of the Bush administration, but that’s a pretty low bar, since most of them are of the CHIMPLER McCHENEYBURTON RAPED MY MOTHER AT WOUNDED KNEE variety. I’m sure there are decent criticisms to be written about the Bush administration, but ones that conclude, as Hart’s does, that Bush is the worst in American history don’t deserve to be taken seriously.

Finally, Hart wants to write another book called “How the Conservatives Committed Suicide by Forgetting Burke and Backing Bush.” He’s big on Edmund Burke, as he explains in a letter to Panero:

I would insist that the definition of “conservative” has been clear since Burke evolved it (if I’m still permitted to use that verb) in his Reflections (1790) and his Thoughts on French Affairs (1791). In the first, Burke was struggling against “ideology,” as we would say, or as he called it “metaphysical politics” or “abstract dogma.” That is, thought disconnected from actuality, and destructive of social institutions, which he saw as the habits of society. In the second appraisal (1791), Burke recognized that, quite apart from the philosophes’ abstract ideas, the Revolution had been inevitable. …
I would call Burke an analytical realist, despite a few operatic passages such as the one on Marie Antoinette (his friend Philip Francis warned him against those.)

Edmund Burke devoted seven years of his life to the prosecution of Warren Hastings, a corrupt colonial administrator. Ultimately he failed to convict Hastings, but Burke drew attention to the failings of colonial government and brought about reform–because it was the right thing to do. This was the work of an idealist, in the best sense of the word, and a romantic–the sort of guy who writes a book called the Sublime and the Beautiful–not of an “analytical realist”.

But as for Burke’s realism, Hart needs to reconsider the Letters on a Regicide Peace–available for your perusal here.

We are in a war of a peculiar nature. It is not with an ordinary community, which is hostile or friendly as passion or as interest may veer about; not with a State which makes war through wantonness, and abandons it through lassitude. We are at war with a system, which, by it’s essence, is inimical to all other Governments, and which makes peace or war, as peace and war may best contribute to their subversion. It is with an armed doctrine that we are at war. It has, by it’s essence, a faction of opinion, and of interest, and of enthusiasm, in every country. To us it is a Colossus which bestrides our channel. It has one foot on a foreign shore, the other upon the British soil. Thus advantaged, if it can at all exist, it must finally prevail. Nothing can so compleatly ruin any of the old Governments, ours in particular, as the acknowledgment, directly or by implication, of any kind of superiority in this new power. This acknowledgment we make, if in a bad or doubtful situation of our affairs, we solicit peace; or if we yield to the modes of new humiliation, in which alone she is content to give us an hearing. By that means the terms cannot be of our choosing; no, not in any part.

That is realism; and not the “realism” of James Baker and the Iraq Study Group. Iran is a regicide nation that overthrew and tried to murder its Shah, and the mullahs are motivated (as were the French in Burke’s time) by an armed doctrine of revolution. They may not be negotiated with–and no superiority in this new power may be acknowledged.

To the extent that Bush understands this and remains resolved to ignore the ISG’s suicidal plan, he is being a true Burkean conservative. Not that Prof. Hart would acknowledge that.

National Review had a way of steering conservatism through the shoals; they tacked away from Ayn Rand and from the anti-semitic tendencies of Joseph Sobran as well. While Prof. Hart helped found a great institution, I think history will show Hart’s withdrawal was another blessing.


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there it is on December 27, 2006 at 5:46 PM

There’s something to be said for the corrupting influence emotion has on religious doctrine but I doubt that purity of doctrine is where Mr. Hart was going. The foundations for his thinking are probably rooted in that idea that Christianity needs to be based on the facts and texts of the Bible not on emotional influence that is easily swayed.

bj1126 on December 27, 2006 at 5:50 PM

I think the only thing Jeffrey Hart has accomplished is to prove the old adage that people who use the most words often have the least to say.

.

GT on December 27, 2006 at 6:00 PM

think the only thing Jeffrey Hart has accomplished is to prove the old adage that people who use the most words often have the least to say.

Ding! Winner!

quax1 on December 27, 2006 at 6:03 PM

Whatever, Everybody knows Mr. Peanut was the “Worst.President.Ever.”

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on December 27, 2006 at 6:08 PM

I see how he thinks, but he’s… equating surface things with conservatism? Why any leftist could do the things he was talking about.

I’m working on Burke myself, so I’ll reserve judgment for now.

His point seems kind of reactionary– now, this is going to come off a bit odd, but I think maybe he saw Jesus Camp and thought, “That tears it, them Evangelicals have gone too far!”

He’s getting, it seems, a bit crystallized. He needs to reconnect.

RiverCocytus on December 27, 2006 at 6:10 PM

See-Dubya, that was one of the best written rebuttals of a “conservative” attacking the neo con movement I’ve ever seen.

Well said.

I have to agree that there are some well placed criticisms of the presidents work, and he well deserves some of them. This “do what I want or be condemned attitude” that some writers are taking these days is just … immature.

One Angry Christian on December 27, 2006 at 6:10 PM

I wish my conservative friends were as cool as this guy.

JaHerer22 on December 27, 2006 at 6:17 PM

Oh God. We’re about to get bombarded by angry Evangelicals again. Take cover!

Gregor on December 27, 2006 at 6:17 PM

The Dartmouth-based “National Review” has changed much since Bill Buckley chaired the magazine… it has lost its luster as the Conservative bible and become a Mad magazine wanna-be!

Jeffrey Hart should put down his lexicon and pick up the stock market report for today; the market in uncharted levels! What must the conservative dean think?

Perhaps this Hart joker would rather have a Dean or a Gore? Is he fully knowledgeable of how much deficit Reagan accumulated? Just who does this Hart joker propose to defend the nation from terrorism and who does he have in mind that can defend it as ably as Geoge Bush has done?

I have little patience with Democrats who abuse our president; I have none at all for alleged conservatives who try.

IntheNet on December 27, 2006 at 6:21 PM

I am with quax1….GT had the winning post.

the only thing Jeffrey Hart has accomplished is to prove the old adage that people who use the most words often have the least to say.

Haha…still chuckling at that one.

kcluva on December 27, 2006 at 6:21 PM

I think it was “governed by the Yale faculty, not Harvard.” Buckley went to Yale.

pabarge on December 27, 2006 at 6:46 PM

He said Harvard and Boston, thinking the Harvard faculty was even worse than Yale’s.

Though if we were governed by the Yale faculty, we’d have a mandatory Taliban exchange-student program in every American high school.

see-dubya on December 27, 2006 at 6:59 PM

Well done, See Dubya.

Kid from Brooklyn on December 27, 2006 at 7:04 PM

Martinis suck.

Today’s conservative drinks beer, dammit.

Slublog on December 27, 2006 at 7:53 PM

Well, while I agree that President Bush isn’t a real conservative, this Hart guy is apparently an obnoxious, pseudo-intellectual twit.

You don’t have to be a graduate of a top university and dress in overpriced clothes and drink expensive liquor to be a real conservative.

He is just another elitist sneering at the people in ‘flyover country’.

He can put his government of the first 2000 names in the Boston phone book where the sun don’t shine.

However, Give me the first 2000 names in the Dallas, Omaha, Casper, or even Denver, and you got a deal.

LegendHasIt on December 27, 2006 at 7:58 PM

I wish my conservative friends were as cool as this guy.

JaHerer22 on December 27, 2006 at 6:17 PM

Wait…what makes you think that you HAVE conservative friends?

CyberCipher on December 27, 2006 at 8:29 PM

Unfortunately, Bush will probably turn out to be the worst president ever. We are millimeters away from erasing the borders and welcoming the third world and their families into our welfare state. He pushed a prescription drug entitlement that will go a long way towards bankrupting us. He has immersed us into a war without any type of exit strategy. He refuses to identify our enemy in the “war on terror.” It will probably take another 10 years to see the irreversible damage his neocon policies have done. Until then, I would reserve judgement on how bad his presidency was. The seeds have been planted.

Valiant on December 27, 2006 at 8:37 PM

Well, he had a chance to be great

Opinionnation on December 27, 2006 at 8:42 PM

He has gone to a good school, maybe shops at J. Press, maybe plays tennis or golf, and drinks either Bombay or Beefeater martinis, or maybe Dewar’s on the rocks, or both.

I’ll take a shotgun tottin’, Walmart shoppin’, Bible thumpin’, pickup truck drivin’, snoose spittin’, cowboy that hangs out at the bowling alley, drinks domestic beer, and watches NASCAR ANY friggin’ day of the week over this schmuck.

C’mon people, the guy is an ENGLISH PROFESSOR at an Ivy League school. I bet ya’ dollars-to-doughnuts that he:
1) can’t balance his checkbook ’cause he flunked outta’ math class, and
2) can’t change the oil in his car or change a flat tire.

He doesn’t know much about history either since historians have almost unanimously selected Abraham Lincoln’s predecessor (James Buchanan) as the worst president ever.
BTW, just to toss some read meat out there, many historians have also speculated that Buchanan was gay. You don’t suppose that Professor Hart has anything in common with the 15th president of the U.S., do ya’? (Martinis my a**.)

CyberCipher on December 27, 2006 at 8:49 PM

Hart has swallowed the liberal/hollywood caricature of red staters hook, line, and sinker.

Real conservatism is not about elitist snobbery. Real conservatism is about supporting the family structure in society. That comes in many forms, whether it be bible-thumpin’ evangelicalism to latino Catholicism. Hart does not speak for conservatism; he is simply a snobby, stuck up d*****bag.

FormerLiberal on December 27, 2006 at 9:15 PM

I bet ya’ dollars-to-doughnuts that he:
1) can’t balance his checkbook ’cause he flunked outta’ math class, and
2) can’t change the oil in his car or change a flat tire

Of course not. That’s what Mexicans are for.

/L

The Monster on December 27, 2006 at 9:49 PM

The reality is that Hart is a the same kind of Country Club Republican that Limbaugh talked about last November at the Warner Theatre.

I remember not long after I was on the air in New York, I met some prominent New Yorkers, Republicans, and I was invited to one of their parties out at the Hamptons. I wish I could name names here, but it really doesn’t matter. These are big business tycoons, and they’re in the Northeast. They know who I am, but they’re still a little hands-off because, you know, I’m openly conservative. These guys are just Republicans. So after dinner, we’re out on the deck, and one of these guys — a very, very prominent executive, you would know the name — comes up to me and starts poking me. “When are you going to do something about these Christians and abortion? Because until you do, we don’t have a chance of winning anything.”

This was during the Clinton years, and I looked at him and said, “What am I going to do?”

“Well, you can talk to ‘em. They listen to you.” “Well, who are you talking about?”

“Oh, you know, the evangelicals, the Falwells and those people, live down in Georgia and Virginia and Mississippi.”

“Are you kidding me? Are you u trying to provoke me?”

“No, I want you to talk to them. We’re never going to win anything until we get rid of those people in our party, or get ‘em to change their minds.”

I said, “They are 24 million votes, and the only reason you had landslides in 1980 and 1984 was because of them, and if you think (applause) that you can just cast them aside…” Well, it turned out I talked to the guy. I talked to him, and after I kind of calmed down and — and he was being a little provocative, I said, “What so scares you about this abortion issue?”

He said, “You know, everybody knows that the people that are pro-life drive pickups and they have gun racks and they go to church on Sunday but they get there early on Saturday and sleep in the flatbed to get a good parking space,” and he was just embarrassed. They’re Republicans. He was embarrassed when it was learned he was a Republican, because at the cocktail parties people would give him grief. Plus, these guys — I know this is going to — these guys’ wives nagged the heck out of them over this issue, and they don’t want to deal with that. No husband wants to deal with nagging.

It’s easier to get 24 million people to change your mind on abortion than to get your wife to stop nagging you. (laughter and applause.)

That story describes Hart perfectly.

.

GT on December 27, 2006 at 10:51 PM

I hate ivory tower conservatives nearly as much as I hate ivory tower liberals. I don’t know if Hart was always an elitist prick, but he sure sounds like one now. Personally, I could care less where people shop, as long as they’re spending their own money. But anybody who thinks that shopping at a certain store or drinking a certain drink automatically makes them a better person is a shallow @sshole.

ReubenJCogburn on December 27, 2006 at 11:06 PM

You don’t have to be a graduate of a top university and dress in overpriced clothes and drink expensive liquor to be a real conservative.

Well, I’ve got one out of the three. Hope that’s good enough.

Bob's Kid on December 27, 2006 at 11:25 PM

I hope this guy doesn’t have anything to do with NR anymore. Damn! What a stupid elitist!
Does that mean I’m out of the conservative movement because I’m Latino and didn’t go to an “good school” (definition of good school open to debate)?
I’m glad this kind of “conservative” is leaving the party. We don’t need them. This guy is the other extreme of the media template for conservatives: Rich and bigoted.
Coño!

batperez on December 28, 2006 at 1:48 AM

For a deep thinker, he sure is shallow.

Black Adam on December 28, 2006 at 2:07 AM

This pompous blue-blood has more than his share of nerve. Nevermind his condescension towards anyone who didn’t land safely in an Ivy-League school, his most absurd inferrence is that he is somehow comparable to the Founders of our nation. What a mentally-masturbative twit.

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2006 at 4:49 AM

BTW, excellent post, See-Dubya. Keep’em coming.

hillbillyjim on December 28, 2006 at 4:50 AM

Remember the good ol’ days when elitism was looked down upon as anathema to the Republic? Look up the Order of Cincinnatus some time (I think that’s what it was called. It had something with Cincinnatus in it’s name). Never heard of it? Here’s a clue: it was a proposed association of Revolutionary War Veterans, a sort of a VFW or American Legion in embryo (VDW?). The idea went over like a lead balloon it smacked too much of, wait for it, elitism! And this was within one generation of the Revolution! Frankly, I think that was a little overkill myself, but they had the right idea. The absolute beauty of our system is that we bend knee to no man because we are all equals under the law. Any half wit who wants to tell me that because I attend a public university, think overpriced clothing is a frivolous waste of money, and prefer Jagermeister to martinis (martinis????) I am less of a conservative or less of a citizen, that man can go get bent. This includes Ivy League, Bush League (not the family), Major League or any other kind of league you can think of. Civis Americus Sum, and that alone is as close to elitism as any American should want to aspire.

But that’s just my opinion.

Militant Bibliophile on December 28, 2006 at 5:06 AM

The idea went over like a lead balloon because it smacked too much of, wait for it, elitism!

Note to self: proofread!

Militant Bibliophile on December 28, 2006 at 5:08 AM

I think JH is talking about what Pres. Adams I called a natural aristocracy. At the time that notion got him a lot of abuse. Times haven’t changed. Right now, I’d say the country is in dreadful shape and getting worse. Would Hart’s gentlemen conservatives would do a better job in putting things right than this dweadful evangelical wabble? We’ll never know.

Still, any friend of Edmund Burke is a friend of mine.

dhimwit on December 28, 2006 at 6:54 AM

1. This outburst from Hart is just another side-effect of Sagerism. Ever since Elephant in the Room was published, there has been a ganging-up against evangelicals and Southerners. Problem is, without those two elements, the next GOP convention could meet in a phone booth. Ryan Sager has provided conservative intellectuals with a convenient scapegoat for the failures of Republicanism in the Bush era.

2. What is actually going on, I would contend, is a war between two elites within the Big Tent. On the one hand, you have an intellectual elite — composed of academics, think-tankers, pundits and magazine journalists — who like to compose little dreamland scenarios of their Platonic ideal regime. On the other hand, you have a political elite — administration officials, members of Congress and their top staffers, campaign operatives, consultants, lobbyists, etc. — whose chief objective is winning elections, making money, and wielding power. These two groups have starkly different ideas of what constitutes successful politics, but both are going to bitch like hell when confronted with a political debacle like the 2006 elections.

Both of these GOP elites are clustered heavily around Washington, but the conservative intellectual elite are much more likely to be associated with institutions that we think of as elite — journalism and academia — and much more capable of articulating their ideas and grievances. Whereas members of the conservative political elite are much more likely to be associated with real money and real power, and are much better situated to get somebody important to listen to their ideas and grievances.

But neither elite faction really speaks for the rank-and-file.

Ali-Bubba on December 28, 2006 at 7:17 AM

Hey, Professor Hart, tell you what:
You take all the academic theorists and Ivy League preppies,
I’ll take all the holy rollers and pro-life Catholics,
And we’ll have a fight over who runs the conservative movement, OK?
… oh, and while we’re at it, Professor:
How many of your Dewars-drinking Dartmouth lads have died in Iraq?
(I understand that it’s unfair to play the “chickenhawk” card in an intramural conservative skirmish, but these Northeast elitist snobs — and yes, I’m talking to you, Ryan Sager — really piss me off.)

Ali-Bubba on December 28, 2006 at 7:27 AM

… prefer Jagermeister to martinis …

Poseur! I drink Bud longnecks (from the bottle — glasses are for fags.)

Ali-Bubba on December 28, 2006 at 7:31 AM

This guy sounds more like your usual elitist pompous liberal.

lynnv on December 28, 2006 at 8:31 AM

It’s like being insulted by Thurston Howell III.

cmay on December 28, 2006 at 8:40 AM

I wish my conservative friends were as cool as this guy.

JaHerer22 on December 27, 2006 at 6:17 PM
Wait…what makes you think that you HAVE conservative friends?

Um, the fact that some of my friends tell me they are conservative.

I’ll take a shotgun tottin’, Walmart shoppin’, Bible thumpin’, pickup truck drivin’, snoose spittin’, cowboy that hangs out at the bowling alley, drinks domestic beer, and watches NASCAR ANY friggin’ day of the week over this schmuck.

Now I understand why we don’t get along so well. I can’t wait to get off work so can get in my Volvo, throw on NPR, drive over to Whole Foods for some sushi and good Belgian beer, and then go home and relax with a joint amd some Tivo’ed Daily Show. Damn it feels good to be a liberal.

JaHerer22 on December 28, 2006 at 9:21 AM

Shows you how shallow his thinking is, disrarding the fact he knows a lot of words. Before the presidents term is over, before historians have a chance to analyze what events happended and the effect, he pontificats on what a horrible president Bush is.
Here is some advice for the arrogant sob. Step back, take a deep breath, and let history play out the course that has been set by this president. A course that has established us as a hater of terrorism, and no longer tolerant of their crass, destructive, murderous behavior. President Bush has set a standard that all leaders following. You cannot bow to the evils of terrorism, unlike the many “great leaders” like Carter and Clinton. Leaders, who allowed slaughter of our men defending our country.
Jeffery Hart, lost in his Ivy-Leagism, not in touch with the soul of America, and the lives that have been taken from us. Jeffery Hart, living in his Ivory towers, unaffected by everyday people, feeding off academic elitism.
Jeffery Hart, an academic terrorist.

right2bright on December 28, 2006 at 9:37 AM

JaHerer22—

You have a Conservative friend. I am certain of it. And I bet you have a *Black* friend, too.

seejanemom on December 28, 2006 at 10:17 AM

I agree with his contempt for religous people. There’s nothing conservative or intellectual about believing in God. God, like Santa Claus, is for children. Responsible grown ups (read: conservatives) don’t make an imaginary being responsible for their decision making. I think the Republican party would be better off leaving this God thing behind and push the free-market principles that everyone agrees with, because religious belief is going the way of the dodo in America. As it should, frankly. But the Republican party better get on the right side of it, and quick, otherwise this will just become like the civil rights issue – conservatives were on the wrong side of it 50 years ago and have always paid the price since.

This is the same thing. In 20 years, we’re going to be sitting around wondering why we were so concerned about stopping gay marriages and abortions when no one cares about those issues anymore and free-market conservatism is dead. C’mon, people, wake up and leave God behind. He left us behind a looooooong time ago, and He’s never coming back. Accept it and live for today, because living for the next life doesn’t help anyone now.

In terms of elitism, I have no problem taking an elitist view of people who believe in nonsense.

Did anyone else read this Sam Hiarris op-ed in the LAT on Christmas Eve? It warmed my heart.

Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Enrique–

God is still there, whether YOU believe in Him or not.

And the fires of Hell are still hot, whether YOU believe it or not.

If you had two shreds of intellectual honesty, you would at the very least understand Pascal’s Wager…and place your bets accordingly.

seejanemom on December 28, 2006 at 11:47 AM

And just what is humanity’s track record on running a responsible government without belief in a Supreme Being that teaches us to love our brother as we love ourselves; that teaches us that there is hope; that provides guidelines for a civil and just government up? USSR, China, Cuba, Vietnam, Cambodia…….

Meanwhile, I’ll just continue with my irrational behavior of looking in awe at all Creation that you believe just happened by accident.

.

GT on December 28, 2006 at 11:49 AM

Sorry…lets try again ..*ahem*…….PASCAL’S WAGER…..

(I knew it was wrong when I saw htp:,twice…sorry)

seejanemom on December 28, 2006 at 11:49 AM

Hey GT——–

Enrique does kind of smell like Primordial Stew…dontcha think?

Or did AllahPundit just forget to change the cat litter again??????????

seejanemom on December 28, 2006 at 11:51 AM

Nah. He’s just like I used to be. Lost.

.

GT on December 28, 2006 at 2:10 PM

Ok that’s it. I just don’t get it, so I’ll pack my bags and wait for the Army to ship me off to Iraq… I knew I should have stayed in school and studied hard!!

Responsible grown ups (read: conservatives) don’t make an imaginary being responsible for their decision making.

Umm I don’t know any Christian who thinks God makes them less responsible for their decisions in fact for most they feel more responsibility to make the right decisions.

leaving this God thing behind and push the free-market principles that everyone agrees with

Don’t make me laugh, what imaginary world do you live in to believe that everyone agrees with free-market principles. I take it you haven’t been to many anti-war rallies. Check out my pictures from a recent rally in Seattle (Oct 28 2006)

In terms of elitism, I have no problem taking an elitist view of people who believe in nonsense.

So much for acceptance, maybe a need for God is born into us… We can’t help it, and so it would be wrong for others to judge us based on our desire to find our place with God… Please show some of the tolerance for us that the left demands we show them (I am assuming you’re left)

Gwillie on December 28, 2006 at 3:03 PM

Damn it feels good to be a liberal dipstick.

JaHerer22 on December 28, 2006 at 9:21 AM

There. Fixed that for ya’. No need to thank me. Just bein’ neighborly.

CyberCipher on December 28, 2006 at 3:20 PM

…some of my friends tell me they are conservative.

JaHerer22 on December 28, 2006 at 9:21 AM

Perhaps you should abandon HA and start lurking at a remedial conservative web-site instead. I don’t like having to repeat yesterday’s lesson, but here goes:

My collie smokes cigars, plays cards, and talks. My collie told me “JaHerer is a troll.” Do you believe that too? Would I lie? Just because your friends SAY that they’re conservative, doesn’t mean that they ARE conservatives.

Besides, no where have you provided us with any proof that you are capable of recognizing a conservative when you see one. Furthermore, no where have you provided us with any proof that you have ANY friends of ANY kind. For all we know, Borat is your best friend. Did Borat tell you that he is a conservative?

CyberCipher on December 28, 2006 at 3:35 PM

Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Let me see…how many hospitals have atheists and agnostics built? How many academic institutions have the atheists and agnostics built? Answer: none!

If you went to a school of higher education, or an elite school that you so admire (i.e., Jeffery at Dartmouth), then thank God for your education. If you have cancer or need a heart transplant, thank God for your cure.

right2bright on December 28, 2006 at 4:24 PM

I’m just very pleased that a thinky post dealing with Edmund Burke can get 50 comments. Thanks to everyone.

PS.Cybercipher–Collies are real smart.

see-dubya on December 28, 2006 at 4:37 PM

I agree with his contempt for religous people.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Ding! I am glad that you believe in free speech. You won’t object then if I register an equal amount of contempt for atheists.

There’s nothing conservative or intellectual about believing in God.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Ding! Correct. Faith in God is a spiritual matter.

Responsible grown ups (read: conservatives) don’t make an imaginary being responsible for their decision making.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Ding! Correct again, because the Creator went to a GREAT deal of trouble in order to give all of us “free will.” Philosophers debated this topic for centuries. What most people don’t realize is that the issue was finally laid to rest in the 1920s — not by philosophers or theologians, but by physicists. The underlying fabric of the universe is probablistic, not deterministic. God EXPECTS us to make our own decisions and suffer the consequences. It’s called “the learning process.”

…religious belief is going the way of the dodo in America.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Buzzzzt. Wrong. That may be true in Europe and in some of the blue states, but it is not true in the red states. Furthermore, “religion” as you call it, is growing exponentially elsewhere and in the third-world. The number of people on the planet that hold religious beliefs vastly outstrips you atheists, and the percentages are rapidly growing in favor of “the faithful.”

like the civil rights issue – conservatives were on the wrong side of it 50 years ago and have always paid the price since.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Buzzzzt. Wrong on both counts. It is true that it was folly for some of the conservatives to resist the civil rights movement the way that some of them did. The liberals were guilty of an amount of folly that far exceeded their conservative counterparts with their “Great Society” and the creation of the welfare state. You need to take a harder look at the story told by the statistics relating to the fate of the black family unit in the U.S. in the past 50 years. Furthermore, it wasn’t the conservatives that paid the price, it was all of us that paid the price.

In 20 years, we’re going to be sitting around wondering why we were so concerned about stopping gay marriages and abortions when no one cares about those issues anymore
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Buzzzzt. Wrong again on both counts. I remember back in the 1970s when Anita Bryant campaigned against so-called “gay rights initiatives.” Liberals said that in 20 years no one would care about this. I remember Roe vs. Wade in the 1970s. Liberals said that in 20 years no one would care about this. Guess what? It’s 25 – 30 years later. People still care. A LOT of people still care. The past is a better indicator of the future than your crystal ball.

In terms of elitism, I have no problem taking an elitist view of people who believe in nonsense.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

Ding! You are free to take this position. The Bill of Rights that was added to the Constitution of the United States guarantees it. If, however, you think that you are going to deprive me of those same rights (simply because I vehemently disagree with you), it is YOU that will pay the consequences for your folly. There are some of us out here that will defend those aforementioned rights in ways that are FAR scarier than simply “taking an elitist view.” The phrase “by any means necessary” comes to mind. So. Are you ready to rumble with likes of people like me?

CyberCipher on December 28, 2006 at 4:37 PM

like the civil rights issue – conservatives were on the wrong side of it 50 years ago and have always paid the price since.
Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

You should read a little more history Enrique. It was the Church’s who were the primary movers of eliminating slavery. It was the church’s who set up the underground that made it possible for slaves to escape out of the democratic south and move towards freedom. The Republican party was built on the platform of no slavery, against the Democrats and the KKK.
In the 60′s, it was the Republican’s that cast the votes for minorities. While people like Gore and other democrats that fought bitterly against. The last known KKK leader in the senate is a democrat.
Your’s is the kind of education you get going to a secular school. You believe everything your told, but do not have the resources to research the truth.

right2bright on December 28, 2006 at 5:13 PM

Enrique,

Thank you for proving Ronald Reagan right when he said, “It isn’t that Liberals are ignorant. It’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.”

As far as Republicans being on the wrong side of Civil Rights, you have successfully proven Reagan right. The reality is that it was a Republican who first worked to pass a Civil Rights bill. That Republican was Dwight D. Eisenhower. I strongly suggest you read up on the Civil Rights Acts of 1957 and 1960. He also supported Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.

I would also remind you that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would not have passed if the majority of Republicans hadn’t voted. Don’t forget the Democrats had a veto proof majority in the Senate at the time.

Just a note: Being an atheist doesn’t prove one’s intellectual superiority.

.

GT on December 28, 2006 at 7:00 PM

Enrique quietly leaves the room, hoping no one will notice his absence.
Go to your room Enrique, and don’t come down till you have read some history books.

right2bright on December 28, 2006 at 7:33 PM

I wish my conservative friends were as cool as this guy.

JaHerer22 on December 27, 2006 at 6:17 PM

I wish all my lefty friends weren’t as lame as you.

spmat on December 28, 2006 at 7:42 PM

DAMN.

All the fun happens when I’m over at LGF.

Enrique…Enrique……..you here???

seejanemom on December 28, 2006 at 9:39 PM

I know he isn’t coming out with you around seejanemom, even he isn’t that stupid.

right2bright on December 28, 2006 at 10:34 PM

C’mon, people, wake up and leave God behind. He left us behind a looooooong time ago, and He’s never coming back. Accept it and live for today, because living for the next life doesn’t help anyone now.

In terms of elitism, I have no problem taking an elitist view of people who believe in nonsense.

Did anyone else read this Sam Hiarris op-ed in the LAT on Christmas Eve? It warmed my heart.

Enrique on December 28, 2006 at 11:11 AM

GODHas never left us,we have left him by the typical liberal BS. Get real Enrique, put down whatever your smoking and just know we are in for the fight of our lives GOOD vs EVILIf people can’t see it or belive, I hope you all wake up before it is to late. Our God is mercifull but HE aure can’t be fooled by no man, period, You reap what you sew. So take your trash talk down to your gutter and share it with your buddies. I hope you enjoy he heat when it;s your time to met God and see how far you can backstep. I y won’t work,sorry.

bones47 on December 29, 2006 at 12:01 AM

Poseur? Ali-Bubba, long necks are good to go, but when I drink, I usually don’t want to remember much of that night. For that, Jager does the trick or, if I’m feeling really masochistic, Sambuca. Hits you like a mugger in a back alley with a sack of nickels…

As for Enrique, dude, grow the hell up. If you have issues with religion, fine. But to broad brush all religious types as ignorant fools and dolts is frankly more than a little childish. Are you that threatened? God knows I’m not threatened by agnostics and atheists; they are welcome to their views despite how misguided I think they may be. I’m not going to call them fools, rather I will let their actions speak for them, just as I would any religious man. As I previously stated, in this Republic, we’re all equals under the law and entitled to our own opinions. As such, I will state mine and expect you to state yours. When you start insulting me, mine, and my beliefs, you have passed beyond the bounds of civilized discussion (this goes for anyone, myself included) and is more than anything an indicator that you should be strengthening your arguments rather than raising you voice.

I’d put that last line in quotes, but I forget who said it first. I suspect Shakespeare or Churchill.

Militant Bibliophile on December 29, 2006 at 2:16 AM