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Thursday, November 4, 2004
Political Miscellany

On the War Against Islamo-Fascist Terror:

Yassir Arafat's health is reportedly failing badly. It may be worth a moment's reflection that time may be about to win a great victory which diplomacy, intimidation, and colossal bribery could not.

On the Democrats:

John Kerry and some other Democrats are talking about trying to bring America together. There are some obvious problems with this. First, they have been engaged in the opposite activity for three years, right up to yesterday morning; they're probably pretty rusty at this one. Moreover, a defeated presidential candidate is not the party's leader. But we can watch and see if they're serious. They ought to be; it's probably the only way to put their party back together for the long haul. If they are serious, these obstacles won't hold them back long.

On Meeting Halfway:

Some Democrats are now saying that it's up to the Republicans to meet the Democrats halfway in Washington, to get things done. I confess I don't understand why they should. A Republican president won re-election. The House Republicans increased their majority. The Senate Republicans increased their narrow majority. Shouldn't the Democrats themselves expect to go more than halfway in meeting the Republicans? They lost; let them reach out!

They could start by bridling their tongues and their pens, and trying to show a little respect for the President of the United States, even if it hurts. John Podhoretz dashed off a quick list of names prominent Democrats have publicly called President Bush in recent hours and days. It includes "idiot," "fascist," "warmonger," "religious fanatic," "kook," "liar," "cheat," "monster," "bad guy." I'm actually not sure why the Republicans would want to meet such bitter, desperate people anywhere, let alone halfway!

On the Second Term:

When I was a child the Left asked, "What if they threw a war and nobody came?" I suppose it's still an interesting question, but now there's a more interesting one: What if, during the next four years, the Democrats and Republicans all got together and fixed things? (I have in mind the tax code, Social Security, and immigration.)

We will have a second-term President who cannot run again, but what makes the present opportunity unique is that the sitting Vice President will not be running for President. The greatest motivation the Democrats have had over the last four years to obstruct needed progress in several crucial areas has been that they didn't want President Bush to get the credit and be re-elected. Well, now he's been re-elected, and his Vice President isn't running, so what do they have to lose? Fixing the tax code, Social Security, and immigration, among other things, might make Bush a great second-term president, and they won't like that, but that's for the history books. When the next presidential election rolls around, there will not be a Republican running who has a clear claim to the credit for such revolutions - especially if the Democrats visibly and substantively cooperate. Moreover, if such things are really accomplished, no Republican running will be able to live up to President Bush's legacy - so the Democratic candidate won't have to, either.

On Dan Rather and Tom Brokaw Retiring:

It's probably a good time to go. Every major network stepped in it in a big way during the last few months of the campaign, and the Big Media Acronyms' star is waning, anyway, as the bloggers rise to influence and prominence. In fact, the world just changed. Did you notice?

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