Still Pissed Off About the Hawley-Smoot Tariff

Friday, November 05, 2004

Feeling Sorry for the Lefties?

The Man has a post that ought to solve that problem.

On Wednesday morning I heard some libs call into conservative (and, in the case of Neal Boortz, Libertarian) radio shows, and they sounded so defeated that I actually pitied them.

Since then, of course, I heard and read more than enough tripe to get me past that stage. Well, at least as regards the shrill ultra-leftists who think they lost because gosh darnit, they just weren't liberal enough. (Here's a brilliant piece from Liberal Larry on that point).

The topic, as far as Left v. Right goes, seems to be Unity. Nancy Pelosi, for example, warned (excuse me, but a warning is awfully hollow when you've got nothing to back up the threat) that Bush should try to unify the country. Wait, does that mean the liberals should moderate their positions at all, to try to meet the conservatives somewhere in the middle? No, Pelosian unity means conservatives, who just won a staggering victory in both the Presidential and Congressional races (and, soon enough, the Judicial nominations), should abandon that very coonservativism that got them the victory in the first place.

None of the preceding sentiments are the least bit original, but I can't really cite anything because it's more or less an amalgamation of things I've heard from several conservative sources. The summary is, if Lefties want unity, they need to join the winning team. The Governator undiplomatically asked, "Why would I listen to losers?" (Answer: because ultra-lib Barbara Boxer just crushed her competition in your state, that's why).

What I hope is an original senitment - at least I haven't seen anyone else making the argument - is that unity is not necessarily a good thing. No one who calls for unity ever defines it, so the discussion is a tough one, but on many issues unity is actually anti-democratic.

Should we be unified in supporting U.S. troops in hostile territory? Absolutely, because we're asking them to sacrifice their very lives, if necessary, to keep up free.

Should we be unified as to the proper reach of the Patriot Act? Absolutely not. As much as I disagree with Sacha Boegem (just as an example) about whether the Patriot Act is a good thing as applied, if he doesn't disagree with me, if the Sachas of the world won't argue the merits with the SobekPundits of the world, we all lose out. Because issues such as whether a law is proper can never have any kind of objective answer, and the subjective pros and cons are only best brought to light when people argue passionately for those pros and cons.

America does not need - and indeed would be worse off with - unity on matters such as Free Speech, unreasonable search and seizure, the extent of federal powers, the propriety of judicial activism, abortion, death penalty, gun control, taxation, free trade, unionization, or privacy.

Those who call for unity on any of these matters - and I'm looking at you, Nancy Pelosi - are calling for a very bad thing, and not just because it's a transparent effort to get conservatives to trade their recent victory for a loss.