Influential left-wing columnist Matthew Yglesias cheers the death of his conservative political opponents such as Andrew Breitbart.

The American Spectator’s Quin Hillyer is rightfully disgusted by Matthew Yglesias’s reaction to Andrew Breitbart’s unexpected and premature death at the age of forty-three. “Conventions around dead people are ridiculous,” Yglesias lectured in a tweet. “The world outlook is slightly improved with @AndrewBreitbart dead.”

This is disgusting, but not surprising. Throughout history, after all, Marxist-Leninists have denied the humanity of their political opponents in order to rationalize their murder, their pogroms, and their genocide.

Yglesias’s logic is thus quite familiar. All he lacks is the courage of his convictions. (Unlike his ideological forbearers, after all, Yglesias has not actually murdered anyone. Instead, he has simply declared that a political opponent’s death is desirable.)

Sadly and reprehensibly, Yglesias isn’t backing down. In fact, he’s doubling down: “If you think @AndrewBrietbart‘s opponents shouldn’t be glad he’s dead,” he subsequently tweeted, “you’re not taking his life’s work seriously.”

No, Yglesias, you have it exactly wrong and exactly backwards. The truth is quite the opposite: If, like Yglesias, you think Andrew Breitbart’s opponents should be “glad he’s dead,” then you’re taking domestic political disputes way too seriously.

American conservatives are notable for their decency, their humanity, and their good will. Certainly, this was true of Andrew Breitbart, RIP. The same cannot be said, I regret to say, about Matthew Yglesias and America’s disgustingly illiberal Left.

Cross-posted at the Minority Report blog.

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Is Jennifer Rubin a ‘Real Conservative’?

by John R Guardiano on January 22, 2012

jennifer-rubin-drawing

Conservative bloggers are attacking Jennifer Rubin for silly, nonsensical reasons.

I like Dan Riehl, but his criticism of Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin has got to be the silliest thing I’ve ever read.

Riehl says that Rubin is a Jenny-Come-Lately faux conservative who, as recently as 2004, was a John Kerry-loving California Dem.

How does Riehl arrive at this amazing conclusion? Simple: he cites an Internet commenter who says that, when he worked with Rubin in California, she gave the “impression” that she was a Democrat.

Jenn “was mildly critical of some of Kerry’s campaign moves during the ’04 campaign, but she wasn’t in the Bush camp,” says the Internet commenter.

Worse yet in Riehls’ eyes, Rubin earned her undergraduate and law degrees from — gasp! — the University of California at Berkeley!

Rubin, Riehl indignantly intones,

has absolutely no business, nor authority, to be lecturing life-long, long-term and genuine Reaganite conservatives about anything – as she tried to do yesterday. Come to think of it  – and now knowing her background — she even sounds a lot like a Kerry-supporting Berkeley liberal Democrat…

Riehl then quotes from a piece in which Jenn criticized conservatives who dissented from last year’s budget deal. ”If I were you,” Jenn, Riehl piously declares,

I’d be extremely careful about throwing the word credibility as a conservative around, [because] from a traditional conservative perspective, you really have none, insofar as I can tell.

Why some folks can’t simply call themselves Neo-Republicans (which more accurately describes what they actually are) is sad, frankly. Co-opting the word conservative for self-marketing purposes is misleading and little more than a media-based scam.

Oh, please. This is so silly and so laughable!

Look, I sometimes disagree with Rubin, but the idea that she’s really a liberal Dem and only pretending to be a conservative “for self-marketing purposes” is absolute nonsense.  Riehl and his supposedly smoking gun Internet commenter are taking social politeness as an indication of political ideology or affiliation.

But most of us who grew up in liberal areas, and who attended liberal colleges and universities, have learned to be socially polite, and not to wear our politics on our sleeves. We’ve learned to try and find common ground with our liberal family, friends and colleagues.

This doesn’t make us any less conservative; it simply makes us socially smart and adept.

As for not being in Bush’s camp in 2004, well, I have no doubt that Rubin voted for Bush. The foreign policy stakes in 2004, what with Iraq still in turmoil, were simply too great to be ignored. And Rubin is especially committed to an assertive, Reaganite foreign policy.

Still, Jenn probably wasn’t particularly enamored of Bush, and for obvious reasons: The man was not the most articulate spokesman for conservative ideas. And, when it comes to Jennifer Rubin, neither is Dan Riehl.

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Newt Wins South Carolina–But Then Shows Why He Might Blow It

by John R Guardiano on January 22, 2012

Rick Santorum lost the South Carolina primary, but decisively won the primetime speech contest.

What are we to make of Newt’s win in South Carolina? Several things, I think:

1. Newt is a winner. Newt won decisively and across-the-board, amongst virtually every income and demographic group.

This strongly suggests that he has a broad-based appeal with deep roots in the GOP primary electorate. And this, in turn, means Newt will almost certainly be a force to be reckoned with in Florida, Nevada, Minnesota, Ohio, and perhaps all the way to the convention in Tampa, Florida.

2. Newt is a fighter. GOP primary voters want a fight (for the nomination) and a fighter (in their nominee). And they don’t want the party apparatchiks and the media elites to short fuse the nomination process by demonizing worthy and legitimate opponents such as Newt.

Talk radio host Michael Medved says that Newt vs. Mitt is a “choice of personality, not policy. On the big issues,” he explains, the two men have “nearly identical positions,” though they are temperamental opposites: “hot v. cool, passion v. pragmatism.”

That’s mostly but not completely true. There are important policy differences.

For example, Newt, unlike Romney, is for abolishing the immoral and unethical capital gains tax. Still, for the most part, the two men share very similar views.

That said, passion matters in politics — a lot. Indeed, the ability to motivate voters and to mobilize your supporters is an integral part of “electability.”

So let’s not pretend that the choice between Mitt and Newt is trivial or unimportant. It’s not. Mitt has certain advantages, but so, too does, Newt. And Newt’s most important advantage may be his ability to fight and to frame issues.

3. Newt can blow it. I watched in dismay as Newt gave his acceptance speech last night. It was a pure and unmitigated disaster — especially when compared to Rick Santorum’s far more polished and uplifting speech.

In fact, if you turned the TV off and just looked at the visual images (which, in effect, is what many people do, as they often have the TV on in the background while doing other things), you would have thought that Santorum had won and Newt had lost.

Santorum was smiling, positive and upbeat. He joked and spoke movingly about his wife, father and grandfather.

Newt, by contrast, was all somber and serious. He never really smiled. And he rambled on incoherently about Saul Alinsky — a man unknown to the vast majority of the voting public. (Jennifer Rubin observed the same thing that I did, and good on her for doing so.)

There, then, in one night, and within the span of only one hour, we saw the two sides of Newt: We saw the good Newt who can win this thing and, in so doing, “fundamentally transform American politics,” as he would say.

But we also saw the bad Newt, the undisciplined and unfocused Newt: the Newt who too often tries to wing it and fails.

I’m rooting for the good Newt, but I fear the bad Newt.

Cross-posted at the Minority Report blog.

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Netanyahu Dares to Say It: Merry Christmas!

by John R Guardiano on December 18, 2011

Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly gets a lot of flak for taking note of the “war on Christmas.” But he’s absolutely right: There has been a concerted effort, by anti-religious secularists and God-haters, to deprecate the cultural significance of Christmas. And, unfortunately, they’ve been very successful.

Why, walk into any store in any large metro area (New York, Chicago, L.A., D.C., et al.), or any governmental complex, and you’ll rarely, if ever, hear someone say, “Merry Christmas.” Those words are now taboo. “Happy Holidays” is all the rage, and the implication is clear: Christmas is nothing special; it’s just another holiday, like Labor Day or New Year’s Day.

So it is refreshing (albeit not surprising) to hear a prominent Israeli Jew, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, say aloud what too many American Christians are afraid to say publicly: Merry Christmas. (H/T to Smitty over at The Other McCain.)

I say not surprising because, of course, it took a Jew (Jesus Christ) to found Christianity. And, as Netanyahu observes, the Jewish state is today a refuge, not only for Jews, but also for Christians, who are being persecuted and discriminated against in many Islamic states.

Mozal Tov, Prime Minister. Happy Hanukkah — and Merry Christmas.

Originally published at the American Spectator.

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How Bachmann (Unfairly) Bloodied Newt

by John R Guardiano on December 17, 2011

Michele Bachmann may look fair-minded and innocent, but in fact she's a fierce debater who sets out to destroy her political opponents.

As for Thursday night’s debate: I think Newt Gingrich made a fatal error by appearing to patronize Michele Bachmann. This clearly angered Michele and, come showtime, she exacted revenge. Let’s go, as they used to say, to the videotape (or at least the transcript).

The issue was abortion. Bachmann was railing against Newt for supposedly refusing to defund Planned Parenthood when he was Speaker of the House of Representatives back in the 1990s.

Worse yet, she charged, Newt had pledged to “campaign for Republicans who are in support of the barbaric procedure known as partial-birth abortion. I could never do that,” Bachmann said. “I will be 100 percent pro-life from conception until natural death.”

This is beyond “hardball politics.” This is called “destroy your opponent” politics. Bachmann ought to be ashamed of herself for suggesting that Newt’s position on abortion is no different from extreme left-wing Democrats such as Barack Obama or Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

In fact, as Newt himself tried to explain, Read More…

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Decades after engineering political disasters for George H.W. Bush, former New Hampshire Governor John Sununu, Sr. (left) has emerged as Mitt Romney's new attack dog.

Some conservatives are upset with Mitt Romney for effusing over former Delaware Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, who has endorsed him for president. But Forget O’Donnell, who has little clout and influence. What conservatives should really find disconcerting is that Romney has trotted out former New Hampshire Gov. John Sununu to bash Newt Gingrich.

Sununu, you may recall, served as chief of staff for the elder George H.W. Bush. As such, he was instrumental in pushing through far-reaching liberal initiatives that made Teddy Kennedy proud.

There was, for instance, Bush’s quota bill, the Bush tax hikes (don’t read his lying lips), and Bush Supreme Court nominee David Souter.

Souter, of course, would become one of the court’s most liberal justices, where he served for 19 regrettable years. But the important thing to remember about him is this: Read More…

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What Romney Must Do to Beat Newt

by John R Guardiano on December 12, 2011

Time is running out for Mitt Romney, who has his eye on the presidential primary clock.

I’m undecided and conflicted in the 2012 presidential race. As a purely political matter, I think that former Missouri Senator Jim Talent is absolutely right: Romney would be a significantly more formidable Republican presidential nominee than anyone else now running.

However, as an iconoclastic conservative, and as a contrarian, I must confess to being a big political admirer of Newt Gingrich. Newt’s willingness — and, indeed, eagerness — to do political battle appeals to me. And his willingness to think big and to challenge the conventional wisdom also is praiseworthy in my judgment.

In fact, given the magnitude and intractability of our problems, Newt’s willingness to think out of the proverbial box is essential. And this helps to explain, I think, his continued appeal to Republican primary voters.

What’s more puzzling is why Romney and his team seem not to grasp this. Why have they not Read More…

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Gloria Allred is at the tip of the left-wing spear -- and smear -- against Herman Cain.

 

I’ve been out of pocket all day attending to the demands of life and work. So yeah, I missed the Left’s latest high-tech lynching. I missed the latest accusations against Herman Cain.

But my good friend, Robert Stacy McCain, diligent as always, has the story: A woman has come forward (with the aid and assistance of left-wing attack attorney Gloria Allred) to accuse Cain of having committed sexual harassment against her 14 years ago, back in 1997.

Cain allegedly fondled her leg and tried to kiss her while they were alone in a car, [the accuser] says. When she said stop, he did. And so your headline is:

Disgruntled Former Employee Says

Herman Cain Made a Pass at Her

 Why wait 14 years? Oh. That’s right: The accused is leading the GOP field for president.

So if you make a pass at a woman, and are rejected, you can kiss good-bye whatever plans you had for becoming president — as a Republican.

In short, these accusations are as frivolous as they are ludicrous. And anyone who takes them seriously ought to have his head examined. You simply don’t indict a man Read More…

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Juan Williams Denounces the High-Tech Lynching of Herman Cain

by John R Guardiano on November 7, 2011

Juan Williams says there are clear parallels between what happened to Clarence Thomas and what's happening to Herman Cain.

Juan Williams is one of America’s best journalists. He’s also an accomplished author and historian of the civil rights movement. Among his achievements:

So it’s especially telling, I think, to hear what Williams thinks of the smear campaign against Herman Cain. Williams appeared on Fox News’ Hannity Friday night, and his outrage and disappointment was palpable.

Read More…

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Herman Cain’s ‘Scandalous’ Comment Revealed!

by John R Guardiano on November 3, 2011

The Right Scoop has the scoop! Herman Cain’s inappropriate comment has been revealed! And it’s truly scandalous.

Here: I report… er, The Right Scoop reports! (via the Des Moines Register) — and you decide:

During his Oct. 3 broadcast in Iowa, [radio host Steve] Deace mentioned that Cain made a comment to a woman who was there to report on the radio interview for another news agency.

“Cain said, ‘Darling, do you mind doctoring my tea for me?’” Deace said.

Deace told the Register last month that he believes Cain was talking about adding honey and lemon, but that it was an awkward moment.

Yeah, that’s it. Scandalous, eh? As The Right Scoop notes with righteous disgust, “This is pathetic.” Indeed, it is. Indeed, it is.

UPDATE: DARLING: formerly a legitimate term of endearment used by American gentlemen, especially in the South, but since stigmatized by feminist and left-wing thought police as “sexist” and abusive. Implicated, therefore, in many sexual harassment suits and disputes. Use sparingly if at all — and use at your own personal and professional risk.

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The Racially Tinged Assault on Herman Cain

by John R Guardiano on November 3, 2011

Ann Coulter gets it. She understands how the Left viciously uses race to smear black conservatives.

I was, I think, the first conservative to charge that Politico and the media were engaged in a “high-tech lynching” of Herman Cain. Since that time (Sunday night), several influential conservative writers and bloggers have demurred. Race, they insist, has nothing to do with this story, and conservatives should stop “playing the race card.”

“Cain would have us believe his critics are racists,” declares Jennifer Rubin. And that “really sickens me,” emotes Quin Hillyer.

“If harassment was the sort of blanket smear of black conservatives that [Ann] Coulter [and others] suggest it is, you’d expect them, [other black conservatives], to have been smeared, too, by now,” adds Allah Pundit.

Are Rubin, Hillyer, Allah Pundit and other like-minded cons really this obtuse and this clueless? Do they really think that race has nothing to do with this story? Really? Where have they been for the past 25 years? Read More…

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Don’t Try Herman Cain in the Court of Public Opinion

by John R Guardiano on November 3, 2011

No one should be surprised that one media outlet, Pajamas Media, is now reporting that Herman Cain is guilty of sexual harassment.

When a leading presidential candidate has his back against the wall and is reeling from accusations of wrongdoing, it’s inevitable, in a country this big, that people will come out of the woodwork to indict him. And it’s especially inevitable, I think, when, like Cain, you’re a black conservative, who must suffer all manner of abuse from the Left.

But before we rush to judgment, let’s keep two things in mind:

  • First, it’s a big mistake to try someone in the court of public opinion, where the rules of evidence, such as they are, are weak and biased against the defendant.
  • Second, the charges against Cain date back 12 long years. And so, the statute of limitations has long since passed. The passage of time and distance make it increasingly difficult, if not impossible, to gauge the legitimacy and accuracy of these allegations.

Certainly, you have to wonder: why is it that we never heard any of this before? Why did it take 12 years? And why believe (still-unsubstantiated) allegations which seem so at variance with a man who has endeared himself to GOP primary voters?

Herman Cain is being tested as perhaps no presidential candidate has ever before been tested. How he responds in this moment of professional crisis will tell us much about his fitness and readiness for high office.

In the meantime, voters should — and will, I predict — refrain from any precipitous rush to judgment. Herman Cain, after all, has earned our benefit of the doubt.

UPDATE: Surprise, surprise. It looks like there’s a lot less to this Pajamas Media story than we had been led to believe. Slate’s Dave Weigel reports that PJ already is copping to embarrassing and amateurish mistakes.

A previous version of this story mentioned that a source witnessed Cain and the woman entering a taxi together. This was incorrect.

The previous version also mentioned that the woman awoke in Cain’s bed — the source only claimed that the woman awoke in Cain’s apartment. The previous version incorrectly attributed comments from one source to the other source.

As Weigel notes, “that’s not a correction. That’s a massacre. I’m half expecting the next update to report that the man in question was not Herman Cain, but the popular comic actor Charlie Murphy, and that the woman was actually a Japanese body pillow.”

As I say, don’t try someone in the court of public opinion, especially when the charges are 14 years old. Herman Cain’s still standing, and he still deserves our help and support.

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The Politico Media Harassment Scandal

by John R Guardiano on November 1, 2011

Politico continues its scandalous campaign to try and discredit Herman Cain.

As loyal readers know, I’m with Jeffrey Lord, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and Laura Ingraham: The Herman Cain sexual harassment controversy is a high-tech lynching of a highly accomplished black man who threatens the liberal order. Indeed, it’s no “Herman Cain sexual harassment scandal”; it is, instead, a Politico media harassment scandal.

I say this because, as Robert Stacy McCain has observed, Politico has presented no real and discernable evidence against Cain. The charges, such as they are, are so vague and lacking in specificity that they could include even innocuous behavior which no reasonable person would find objectionable.

And of course, we have no way of knowing whether the charges are credible because Cain’s accusers are being protected by a cloak of anonymity.

This may be standard journalistic practice, but it’s also highly unethical in my opinion: Concealing the identities of the accusers Read More…

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It’s Over: Herman Cain Sings and Spills the Beans!

by John R Guardiano on November 1, 2011

Reveals All in ‘Amazing Grace’ 

Exclusive footage of Herman Cain’s appearance yesterday at the National Press Club.

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Politico’s High-Tech Lynching of Herman Cain

by John R Guardiano on October 30, 2011

Herman Cain is the latest conservative black man to be smeared by the legacy media.

Another high-vis, conservative black man. Another legacy media hit job. Another high-tech lynching. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Of course, the original high-tech lynching was perpetrated by National Public Radio against then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas. This latest act of character assassination is being spearheaded by Politico against Herman Cain.

Cain is being charged, in the court of public opinion, with committing sexual harassment back when he was president  of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s. There’s only one problem, and it’s not just that the statute of limitations for Cain’s alleged crime has passed.

No, the real problem with Politico’s story is that Read More…

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Trick–or Treat?

by John R Guardiano on October 29, 2011

My sister's place in northern New Jersey. Yep, that' s snow. And yeah, this is October. So much for "global warming"!

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Profiles in Presidential Leadership–and the Lack Thereof

by John R Guardiano on October 29, 2011

Ronald Reagan: leading

I am not frightened by what lies ahead; and I don’t believe the American people are frightened by what lies ahead. Together, we’re going to do what has to be done. We’re going to put America back to work again.

John F. Kennedy: inspiring

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.

Barack Obama: scolding

[We've] gotten a little soft… We’ve lost our ambition, our — our imagination, and — and — our willingness to do the things that built the Golden Gate Bridge and Hoover Dam and unleashed all the potential in this country.

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The Critics’ Corner: Guardiano’s Too Easy and Egocentric

by John R Guardiano on October 29, 2011

I’m starting a new feature here at ResCon1 called the Critics’ Corner. Here I’ll feature interesting, witty, sharp and amusing criticisms by people (and trolls) out in the blogosphere.

Today’s feature critic is Mike Dugas, who has taken me to task for my on-again, off-again journalistic-blog love affair with the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin. Mike posted his letter over at the Minority Report, which generously publishes some of my work.

Read More…

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Promoting Islamic Self-Discovery Is Key

by John R Guardiano on October 28, 2011

Hasidic Jews have embarked up on a long and fruitful journey of self-discovery. Muslims worldwide must do the same.

Aaron Goldstein notes that, according to one Islamic authority, the London-based Islamic Sharia Council, women are to be treated, in effect, as second-class citizens in accordance with sharia law.

It’s certainly true that the status of women in many Islamic countries leaves much to be desired. But before we indict all of Islam as being irredeemably backward, we should point out, as does Reid Smith, that Sharia can and does mean divergent things to different Muslims.

Moreover, unlike Roman Catholicism, which has a clear institutional hierarchy to settle matters of doctrinal dispute, Islam is a mishmash of competing sects, none of which has clear or obvious jurisdiction over the other.

Which is why, as Reid observes: Read More…

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Steve Jobs Was No Countercultural Icon

by John R Guardiano on October 28, 2011

Steve Jobs epitomized middle-class values, not the counterculture.

Walter Issacson was on Morning Joe yesterday to promote his new biography of Steve Jobs.

As a big fan of Jobs, I look forward to reading Issacson’s book. But why does Issacson — as well as Morning Joe cohost Joe Scarobough — insist on clinging to the demonstrably false notion that Jobs was some sort of countercultural icon?

Jobs wasn’t any such thing. In fact, Jobs expressly and manifestly rejected the counterculture to embrace mainstream, middle-class values. Read More…

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