August 15, 2011


James Poulos seems to hit the nail, The real reason Pawlenty failed:

...Pawlenty is out, and out first, for one reason and one reason only.

It's not Pawlenty. It's Pawlentyism.

Tim Pawlenty is the canary in the establishment coal mine. His message — that the Republican Party doesn't need to rethink any of its main policy propositions — no longer computes with a critical mass of Republican voters: not just in Ames, Iowa, but nationwide.

Paul and his (growing) army of faithful are no longer the lone data point. Michele Bachmann has built her campaign around a radical alternative to Republican spending orthodoxy. Sarah Palin fuels hopes of an even broader renunciation of the Republican establishment....

My preference for Palin is based on logic, by the way. I think our situation is worse than most people realize, and demands more radical changes than the CW admits. What he said above, "Sarah Palin fuels hopes of an even broader renunciation of the Republican establishment," well, them's my hopes too. I'd be happier if she were more explicitly on my wavelength. (I'm available as a consultant.) But she's a fighter, and not afraid to go against the establishment and "elite" groupthink.. I'll settle for that.

A little more of Mr Poulos' piece...

...It's not that Pawlenty's brand of mainstream, fusionist conservatism is wrong. It's that it misses the point. The principles are necessary, but the policies Pawlentyism derives from them are inadequate to the daunting task that Americans have — let's face it — set before themselves.

Given how grievously we've undercalculated the real debt burdens at the state, local, and federal levels, an "ambitious goal" of 5% economic growth is not just absurd but dangerously so. (Perhaps real growth is in reach with a massive and open-ended influx of immigrants who are ready to work cheap and stay off entitlements. Good luck with that.)

Given how weary America has become of its network of military actions, a bear-any-burden approach to muscular interventionism sweeps all our serious strategic questions under the rug. (Note: We Americans are fine with wars. It's the massive and open-ended imperial mission of garrisoning "restive tribal areas" that we rightly lose patience for.)

And given how deeply all economic classes have been penetrated by dependency on perpetual federal wealth transfers, the "Sam's Club Republicanism" that anointed Pawlenty its poster boy cannot be taken seriously when it proposes to "reform" the country and the GOP by replacing our system of targeted tax credits with one of out-and-out wage subsidies.
Posted by John Weidner at August 15, 2011 5:46 PM
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