The Red Queen in Alice

So the House has now passed a bill that defunds Obamacare. The president is miffed, and certain Republican establishment honchos are apoplectic.

These realists of the right say that this quixotic business has got to stop because “you can’t govern from one half of one third of government.” If all you have is the House, then you can’t be expected to do anything until you win the Senate, and the White House. Once you have done that, then you will be in position to do all the swell things that the Republicans wouldn’t do the last time they had the White House and Senate.

Now it quite true that you can’t govern with one half of one third of our government. That is very true. But I don’t want them to govern. I want them to stop governing. I want them to make the fussers quit governing. We have been governed quite enough, thanks. We are being governed into the poorhouse. We are being governed into the ground, with governed here being used as a synonym with pounded.

True. You can’t govern if all you have is the House. But you can paint yourself blue and throw tea in the harbor. That works sometimes.

But you see, if the government has to shut down, then the Republicans will get blamed! Do you hear me? Blamed! Tongues will cluck, and fingers will wag.

Blamed for what? Blamed for doing what they said they would do if they got elected? And if the argument is that they need to avoid being blamed so that they can capture the Senate, and the White House, so that they can come up with innovative reasons at that future time for not doing anything then either, then perhaps the real issue is how stupid you think we are.I do not mind at all when my guys lose. I do mind them losing when they still have bullets left. I don’t mind when my team loses a hard fought game. I do mind if they all walk off the field in the third quarter, and are taking showers while the Left kicks field goals.

The real reason that elite members of the Washington Republican establishment are furious with Ted Cruz and the others who are forcing this showdown is that they will have to vote. They will have to go on the record. Say that Cruz and his friends filibuster — that will mean in order to win the cloture vote, shutting these renegades down, Harry Reid will have to get some Republican votes. Those votes will be out in public and everything.

So this means that, if it is a losing battle, x number of valiant Republicans did everything they could to stop Obamacare — which is looking to be an F-5 disaster — and y number of quislings will have to vote to shut down the filibuster. So . . . the F-5 disaster . . . brought to you by y Republican senators.

Oh, and John Roberts. Don’t forget that gentleman. One of the reasons we have to have the Senate and the White House is so that we can appoint stalwart conservatives like John Roberts to the Court who, when given a chance to whack Obamacare dead, will decline to do so, handing down a convoluted decision worthy of the Red Queen in Alice. That is why taking the Senate and White House is so crucial — we need to make sure that men like John Roberts can stay on the DC cocktail party circuit — which really ought to be considered the 13th circuit, now that I come to think of it.

(Okay, I admit that I have a case of the cutes here, and that Thomas and Scalia have been major dudes, and they were put on the court by actual Republicans. Fully acknowledged, and I doff my cap in appreciation to everyone involved, but this will not prevent me from heading back into cute mode.)

Another argument that is being made is that Obamacare is coming apart all by itself, and so we should just let it. I happen to think this is true, but if you had a vote and really thought that was true, wouldn’t you want to be on the record beforehand, fighting the doomed beast?

Obamacare was designed to fail, but it was designed to fail slowly so that our next generation of solons would have the opportunity to “reform it” into a single payer system. The problem is that it is failing too quickly, coming apart before the launch date. That being the case, the anger about this move by those who profess to be opposed to Obamacare is inexplicable.

The mission is admittedly audacious. And so I understand the nervousness of real conservatives like Jonah Goldberg. It is quite possible, he might be thinking, that some yahoo will botch the mission and our latter case will be worse than the former. But I also think I understand the anger of instinctive statists like John McCain, who don’t want the people to have the authority to say to the overweening state, “we don’t want it. Take it back.”

The way you will be able to tell the difference will be that if the audacious effort is somehow successful (e.g. Ted Cruz pulls out some parliamentary move nobody has used for a hundred years, and lo, astonishment descends upon Harry), the reactions from earlier critics will be quite different. Observers like Goldberg will be grateful that they were wrong, and will say so. The others will still be angry because somebody put a hole in the side of their precious establishment.

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Dan Phillips
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I think the single biggest mistake the GOP is making is that they oppose Obamacare — and just that. That is, they’re famous for being against Obamacare. And…? Do they not take seriously the health care problem in America? That’s their solution — end Obamacare, and put us back where we were? That would be like you and me, Doug, being known as being opposed to Joel Osteen, dead-set against him, foursquare behind his removal from the pulpit and public life… and just that. Not FOR robustly preaching the Gospel and the whole counsel of God. I don’t want anyone… Read more »

Moor
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Moor

My aunt had cancer. Instead of gathering the Elders to pray for her healing, knowing that any miraculous healing would have been of the Devil, we just trusted the sufficiency of Scripture.——————-So I agree.

David Smith
Guest
David Smith

Mr. Phillips, think I understand what you’re getting at, but the problem with anyone in government being “for” something is that it all too frequently translates into yet more of my constitutional liberties being sacrificed and government itself metasticizing into one more area of my life.

Eric the Red
Guest
Eric the Red

I may be a Democrat who mostly supports the President, but I think Dan is on to something. The House seems to think that governance consists entirely of voting once a week or so to defund Obamacare, with an occasional anti-abortion vote thrown in for good measure. They can do so because their gerrymandered seats ensure that few if any of them will lose an election over it. Meanwhile, Americans want to know what’s being done to increase jobs, boost the economy, reduce the trade deficit, and other quality of life issues they actually care about. Just think, if the… Read more »

Andrew Lohr
Member

So vote to transfer the money from O’Romneycare to the taxpayers, or in this vote-buying culture, to some alternative–and some have been and are being proposed. (Mr Prez, you say the GOP has no alternatives? You lie!)

Forcing equality makes inequality worse because it redistributes power to the enforcers: O’Romneycare hires thousands of new IRS agents to make all Americans equal, eh?

Dan Phillips
Guest

Oh good merciful heavens. It’s my birthday, and I have Eric the Red agreeing with me. That goes THIS day, shot to Gehenna.

/c:

And David, I agree with you. But you’ll note that all my tentative suggestions are in the direction of more freedom, less government/lawsuits. I have NO DOUBT that better minds than mine can come up with Constitution-friendly, liberty-friendly solutions. But simply saying, “I’m totally against that horrible fix for this horrible problem” isn’t really much of a platform to win and govern from, is it?

Eric Langborgh
Guest
Eric Langborgh

It’s just not true that conservatives have failed to offer alternatives to ObamaCare. Many plans have been out there, the most recent coming from the RSC: American Health Care Reform Act.
But the Obama-adoring media would rather not cover that side of that story. Better to stick with the whole “party of no” meme.

Eric the Red
Guest
Eric the Red

Dan, happy birthday. (I don’t have a birthday; reptiles are hatched.)

Eric the Red
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Eric the Red
Robert
Guest
Robert

Used to be, I went in to Walmart and was through the line in five minutes. since O care, they only have two or three lines open. It is everywhere.

dchammers
Member

As a family physician of 25+ years, here’s my plan, a failed attempt at a WSJ op-ed. It addresses most all the problems in the current health care system for those who are working. I did not address Medicaid and Medicare in this go-round.

It is similar to the Ron Wyden (D – OR) health plan that was starting to get some traction before the Obama juggernaut came along. I wrote it shortly before the John Roberts debacle.

http://www.typepad.com/site/blogs/6a00e5546e9198883400e5546e919b8834/post/6a00e5546e9198883401761601728b970c/edit

Jonathan
Guest
Jonathan

Eric Langborgh – I think the laughable part of your defense is that the Republicans already had a number of years where they owned the House, Senate, Presidency, a better economy, and all the same health care system problems we have today…and they didn’t come close to offering a solution. In fact, they made the situation worse. And all of these “grass roots conservatives” who want to claim that those weren’t “real Republicans” didn’t raise 1% of the stink then that they raised against Obama before he’d even done anything at all.