Campaigns/Elections

Hyperbole Alert

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The box squeezes for thee

From syndicated radio talker Dennis Prager, writing at National Review:

It may be commonplace for commentators to announce that every election is "the most important election in our lifetime" or something analogous. But having never said that of a presidential election — let alone an off-year election — this commentator cannot be accused of crying wolf when I say that this off-year election is not simply the most important of my lifetime. It is the most important since the Civil War.

Italics mine. Dude, it's a midterm.

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  1. “this commentator cannot be accused of crying wolf when I say that this off-year election is not simply the most important of my lifetime.”

    OK, dude, I won’t accuse of crying wolf. I’ll accuse you of being wrong. But the hair and the squeezebox! Dude! They rock!

  2. SIXHIRB ? Sexist, Intolerant, Xenophobic, Homophobic, Islamophobic, Racist, and Bigoted

    SIXHIRB? Most forced acronym EVER.

  3. Is it the most important off-year election of his lifetime? How old is he? Which would be more important?

  4. Is this guy using Prince Charles’ ghostwriter?

    “We may only have hours left in which to save DA ENTIA EARF!”

  5. It is the most important since the Civil War.

    Woo Hoo!

    *Races off to slave market*

  6. Thread detour:

    This dude thinks NPR is too far to the right.

    He expresses disbelief that people still give NPR positive marks for journalism, “when its coverage … is relentlessly center-right to far right in its perspective.”

    I wonder what color the sky is on his planet.

    1. I wonder where he thinks the center lies.

    2. NPR’s reporting on cultural issues is liberal. But when it comes to issues the Establishment really cares about, particularly in the realm of foreign policy, NPR enthusiastically lines up with right. I still remember hearing Scott Simon cheering for the invasion of Afghanistan nine years ago.

  7. People honestly see this election changing anything at all?

    1. Well even Sean Hannity’s been saying that if this crop O’ republicans coming in doesn’t repeal Obamacare and reduce spending, he and the voters will…be angry.

      1. We’re so pissed off, we’re going to VOTE REPUBLICAN HARDER in 2012!

        1. I don’t supposed you noticed the primaries.

      2. We’ll see how Hannity changes his tune when the republicans do not repeal, but modify Obamacare.

        1. the only tune will be the glub glub of GOP fellating.

          1. I think “irrumating” would be a more appropriate term here.

    2. Hope springs eternal…

    3. 600,000 Americans dying after Christine O’Donnel opens fire on Fort Sumter?

      1. You got to real careful with those witches.

  8. Seems to me we are in the midst of a pretty steady trend of divided government and oscillation between parties in all elected branches. Someone always called each change in direction “permanent.” I guess it was Dennis’ turn.

    1. As far back as 2003, I figured by the end of the decade, there would be some mass movement that would divide one or both of the major parties. I figured the Dems would take Congress in either 2006 or 2008 and the president elected in 2008 would be a one term president.

      Probably the 2012 and 2016 presidents, too

  9. he and the voters will…be angry.

    I’ll put my earplugs in, in preparation for the deafening roar of foot-stamping.

  10. It is the most important since the Civil War.

    [googles] Oh, that Dennis Prager.
    Matt Welch owes me 14 seconds of my life.

  11. I remember the 1860 election and this, sir, is no 1860 election.

  12. It is the most important since the Civil War.

    [googles] Oh, that Dennis Prager.

    Matt Welch owes me 14 seconds of my life he is directly responsible for wasting.

    I’ll see you in court, time thief.

    1. You click the link, you waste the time, you bear the consequences. Don’t push the cost of your poor decisions off on Matt.

  13. It is the most important since the Civil War.

    He’s obviously talking about Prop 19.

    1. Beat me to it…

  14. The upcoming mid-term is not the most important since the civil war, it is the most important ever!

    If the Democrats win, the US will be bankrupted!

    OTOH, if the Republicans win, the US will be bankrupted!

    The choice is clear!

    1. It’s not too late to switch to the acorn-and-beaver-pelt standard like our friends to the North.

      1. Since the Currency Reform Act of 99, we’ve been on a poutine and maple syrup standard. Pucks touched by The Great One are used for large denomination transfers.

        1. Is that why maple syrup costs $500/oz and we have to use either the HFCS crap or agave syrup on our pancakes?

          If we weren’t so tied up bombing weddings in the Middle East I would call for bringing freedom and democracy to Canada.

  15. This midterm is crucial to the extent that it determines the near term fate of socialized health care.

    Had the Democrats maintained their majorities, we’d have single payer within 2 years, as a “Fix” to the first round.

    Most important since, the Civil War? Obviously not.

    1. Bullshit.

      You somehow seem to think that Republicans are going to do more than “improve” Obamacare.

      ANyone who thinks that there is ANY chance of repeal is an idiot.

      Single payer will be here before the 2020 election no matter who is in office.

      1. It’s not inevitable. At this point it’s still more likely than not, but it’s not inevitable.

        I understand why you feel the way you do, but I think libertarians tend to be a bit too pessimistic. Cynicism is great – cynicism is necessary – but to assume that all is Doom, Doom and that we’re fated to be eternally fucked is just as preposterous as Prager’s straight faced hysteria.

  16. With a Democratic victory, the Left’s goal of rendering America’s other motto ? “In God We Trust” ? an anachronism will come closer to fruition. Leftism is a jealous god. As in Western Europe, the Judeo-Christian roots of this country are ceasing to play the indispensable moral role they have played since before America’s Founding.

    Way to convince me to stay home, fuckass.

    1. Come on, Warty, you have to admit that the federal government we had in the old, more Judeo-Christian days (pre-FDR or pre-Wilson, take your pick) was in many ways a lot closer to the libertarian ideal than it has been since leftists got a hold of it. If religious types are on the march for a smaller federal government, why not join in? Differences can wait until after the Democrats are humiliated. I think Reid and Pelosi are far scarier than Prager and Beck.

      This time at least, hold your nose and vote Republican as a vote against leftism. Everyone knows that the GOP surge is not an endorsement of Bushite compassionate conservatism, but a reaction to big-spending big government. I think libertarians should jump on this bandwagon and help try to steer it in the right direction.

      1. No. All the Democrats in my state are just running as conservatives. None of them are fiscally responsible. I turned in my LP protest vote early and that’s as far as I’m going to go.

      2. “”If religious types are on the march for a smaller federal government, why not join in? “”

        The religious types are not for smaller federal government. They only make that argument when it’s laws they don’t like. They have no problem expanding government to fit their moral ends.

        1. Come on, the left wants to control health care, the economy in general, the racial composition of schools and everything else, and everything that has an impact on the environment. And the religious right wants, what? Prayer in schools? Limits on abortion? No gay marriage? As overall threats to liberty, they hardly seem comparable to me.

          1. Papaya SF

            If you think that religious conservatives are small government types, I suggest you check out Mike Huckabee. And for historical context, William Jennings Bryan.

            1. I’d still argue: 1) religious conservatives are still smaller-government types than Obama/Pelosi/Reid, and 2) the Tea Party is primarily about smaller government/less spending/lower taxes, and not about social issues.

              1. Except for the whole gung-ho on the War on Drugs, new-professionalism and such.

                Law enforcement is seen as a quasi-religious institution by conservatives and they can kiss my motherfucking ass.

                Religious types are for small government until it comes to legislating their own moral agenda.

                1. The perfect is the enemy of the good. While you’re busy bashing republicans, the democrats are moving to toward full-on tyranny. But, hey, as long as you can get your drugs……

                  1. My point, if you had bothered to look up the platforms of either Mike Huckabee or William Jennings Bryan, is that aside from their religious conservatism, the ‘religious conservatives’ tend to be as economically interventionist as any Biden/Kennedy/Gore Democrat.

                    1. Huckabee signed the law in AR that made it illegal to smoke with kids in the car.

                    2. Of course some are like that, but religious conservatives (as a whole) seem more free market friendly than Democrats (as a whole).

            2. In what respect was famed Progressive William Jennings Bryan a religious conservative?

          2. “”Come on, the left wants to control health care, the economy in general,””

            You’re foolish if you think the right doesn’t want to do so. They just are at odds with the left about the details.

            Ever seen John Lofton with Zappa on Crossfire?

      3. This time at least, hold your nose and vote Republican as a vote against leftism.

        Same song and dance every single time.

        1. But this time it’s SRSLY.

            1. After nearly two years of Obama, you still won’t admit McCain would have been at least a slight improvement?

              1. After nearly two years of McCain, you still won’t admit Obama would have been at least a slight improvement?

  17. It’s too bad Strom Thurmond and Robert Byrd aren’t around to verify whether or not this election is as important as elections since the civil war.

    Maybe Barbara Bush will chime in.

  18. I’m not an expert, but Prop 19 has the potential to be the biggest shitstorm since… pretty much anything I can think of. Prohibition was done by a constitutional amendment, so the constitutionality of it was clearly defined. If Cali explicitly legalizes a substance that the Feds have banned it will require a ruling on the definition of the commerce clause. Even if the Supremes rule against Prop 19 (essentially saying that the 10th amendment is dead) I can’t see Californians just rolling over and saying “gee, you’re right, those guys 2000 miles away should have final say in how we run our lives”.

    It’s the most important election in a long time, but not because of the people running.

    1. It would require a tremendous constitutional sea change for the SCOTUS to rule that the Commerce Clause means that the feds can directly order a state to ban a substance (as opposed to the highway funding extortion gambit they usually use). I mean, that’s a difference of degree, not kind, from the trampling on state powers that we have already.

      1. …a difference of kind, not degree…

      2. But it’s also a huge change compared to how they ruled in Gonzales v. Raich. You can’t have a commerce clause the allows federal regulation of all activity (on the assumption that somewhere, somehow, it affects interstate commerce) and an amendment that says states have certain powers that the feds have no say in. It’s completely incompatible.

        I know the supremes are weaselly fucks that tend to make rulings in a manner so as to leave as much grey area for future government expansion, but we’re getting to the point where there isn’t much room for the Fed to expand without throwing out portions of the constitution completely. Either the 10th amendment exists and the Raich ruling was complete BS, or the Raich ruling was correct and the 10th only applies to things like taxes, driver’s licenses, and naming official State Birds (any of which can be subsumed by the Feds at their will).

        1. You can’t have a commerce clause the allows federal regulation of all activity (on the assumption that somewhere, somehow, it affects interstate commerce) and an amendment that says states have certain powers that the feds have no say in. It’s completely incompatible.

          It’s not incompatible at all. The feds can ban substances, and use federal personnel to enforce such bans, without demanding that states pass their own bans and/or state authorities help enforce purely federal bans.

      3. I doubt it would take much to get a constitutional amendment to prohibit pot if SCOTUS doesn’t let the feds get their way. Assuming prop 19 passes.

  19. It is the most important since the Civil War.

    And God knows we screwed that one up…

  20. Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t he saying specifically that it’s the most important midterm election since the civil war? That, among midterm elections, it ranks highest? Saying “it’s a midterm” is pretty much irrelevant to his point, whether or not you agree.

    1. It’s a good point, but I still think it’s unclear whether the “most important” modifies “election” or “off-year election.” Also, it depends on the meaning of the word “is.”

      1. Don’t bother updating/editing the original post or anything, Matty.

  21. An important election will occur when we’re no longer asked to decide which drooping, slack-jawed face to put on the same old failed policies.

  22. As midterms go, this one is pretty damn big. When was the last election where an established party got creamed in the primaries by an upstart movement like the tea Party? When was the last election when that upstart movement has a real opportunity to change the direction of government expansion? With Obama’s march to European socialism continuing unabated, this is by far the most important election, midterm or not, in my lifetime.

    1. If you actually believe that tea party candidates, when elected, will be any more effective at reducing the size of government than the GOP. My personal prediction: sucessful tea party candidates will get bogged down in social issues and end up losing their first re-elections while the tea party is never to be heard from again.

      1. If the TP candidates decide to jump on social issues rather than fiscal issues, the TP will replace them in the next primary. I don’t see them going anywhere as long as we’re still headed to economic armageddon.

        1. I hope you are right, but these candidates are going to learn politics at some point. And with no national committee with power worth a damn, enforceing discipline is going to be tough. Besides, most, if not all, of the candidates are running as republicans, so the “leadership” is going to encourage them to take up the vote-getting bloody shirt that is the culture war, rather than those boring old issues like deficit spending and individual liberties.

          1. Of course, you’re probably right. But I still contend this election is the best chance for change that I can remember.

      2. Their job in the short term is simply to shut down the Obama agenda for good. Without a veto-proof majority in both houses, the GOP couldn’t reduce the size of government, even if they were hypothetically 100% committed to doing that.

  23. I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure I remember him saying this about the 2004 Presidential Election, either before, or right after.

  24. If you really want change, you need to do what the liberals did years ago – get into the schools and teach the kids – only this time, teach about The Blessings of Liberty.

    Sitting around and moaning about how ‘both parties are the same” isn’t going to do a damn bit of good. And while your moaning, you’ll being loosing your liberty. And when you loose your liberty, the Drug War won’t seem like such a big problem any more.

    1. That, and incremental steps. Look at the success of the Fabian socialists. I frequently argue here that what kills Libertarians at the polls is their uncompromising purism. Unfortunately, 100% compliance with any ideology does not have wide enough appeal to the electorate. Compromise, water it down a bit, advocate demonstration projects and tests, and ally with people sympathetic to the message (i.e. Tea Party types).

  25. “”If you really want change, you need to do what the liberals did years ago – get into the schools and teach the kids – only this time, teach about The Blessings of Liberty.””

    Can one teach the blessings of liberty in a zero tolerance enviroment?

    1. Yes, Tricky,

      but they can’t be taught by just bitching in the comments section of a blog.

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