WHY RUSH IS WRONG ABOUT CALIFORNIA
By Geoff Metcalf
August 25, 2003
Rush Limbaugh's Wall Street Journal column www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110003923 making "The case for someone other than Arnold Schwarzenegger" is flawed.
Sycophant conservatives (most of whom are GOP apologists) need to recognize that the erosion of the republic the framers gifted us with is the product of incrementalism. The republic did not turn into the socialist erotic dream we now suffer overnight. Likewise, in order to correct the sins of elitist liberals 'Jonesing' for socialism, corrections must occur incrementally. Hopefully we can accelerate the process by taking bigger bites out of the apple than liberals did, but it won't happen with a fundamentalist 'conservative' riding to the rescue on a white horse (or yellow Hummer).
To support Arnold is not an abandonment of conservative principles or acceptance of the unacceptable�it is a necessary reality check that will help the state and eventually even conservatives.
Conservatives can work with Arnold despite his warts and blemishes. Despite his RHINO credentials he would actually help 'real' republicans get elected.
An Arnold governorship would be less an 'event' and more a component of a 'process'.
Limbaugh is half right and half wrong. California DOES need conservatism. However, it cannot and will not be compelled to accept it by switching a light switch (besides power is an iffy thing in California).
According to Rush, "There's no better time to advance conservative principles than when they're most needed. And California needs a large dose of conservatism." He is right. However, "some people don't want to confused with facts which contradict their preconceived opinions and/or prejudices."�sadly, Rush and the knuckle draggers have come to personify that observation.
The Recall election is an anomaly and an opportunity. California today is not California of the Reagan years or the California Rush left. A hardcore principled 'conservative' cannot get elected statewide, protestations to the contrary notwithstanding. If that fact hurts�get over it! It's called reality.
As a young Army officer we were taught to use a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats). Arnold as Governor presents a variety of weaknesses and threats�but the Strengths and Opportunities overwhelmingly mitigate the negatives.
State Senator Tom McClintock is the best conservative candidate on the long list of gubernatorial wannabes. However, the Las Vegas odds makers have him at 40-1�and they are right. McClintock may well be the conservative's best hope in California but only if he works WITH and not against Schwarzenegger.
Gray Davis deserves to be recalled. However, the epic tragedy of California is not exclusively the product of the incompetent, malfeasant Davis. The Governor had a LOT of help eviscerating the 7th largest economy in the world.
The California legislature bears a heavy portion of the blame and responsibility for the $38-Billion plus deficit. Republican politicians fled from the redistricting fight and settled for meager protection of their little fiefdoms, apparently content to settle for what they could get.
Whoever is elected October 7th to replace Davis will face formidable opposition from the liberal democrat leadership in the legislature. The only prospective candidate who can and will fight the chronic recalcitrance, arrogance, and bullying of the legislature is Schwarzenegger.
California is seen to be Initiative crazy to non-Californians. However, the reality is most of the significant, useful (and controversial) legislation has not come from the elected lawmakers but from the people�through the initiative process.
Prop 13, Three Strikes, Prop 187, Prop 209 all enjoyed significant voter support but couldn't survive committee obfuscation and stonewalling in the legislature.
If or when Arnold is Governor and Senate President pro tem John Burton and Assembly Speaker Herb Wesson attempt (and they will) to strong arm the new Governor they could find themselves taking a knife to a gunfight.
Arguably the first and most important necessity to 'fixing' California will be draconian, and brutal spending cuts. Spending cuts need to be attacked with a chain saw not a scalpel. The new governor needs to have the focus, courage, and ability to resist legions of special interest lawyers, unions and lobbyists. Traditional politicians are incapable of embracing the requisite imperatives. Schwarzenegger (for good or ill) can and will do what needs to be done to accomplish phase one of cutting out dead wood.
Rush noted that, "Within hours of his inauguration, President Reagan froze federal hiring. He also deregulated oil prices, which weakened OPEC's grip--increasing supply and lowering costs. Moreover, fearing Ronald Reagan's wrath, the Iranian regime released its American hostages."
A key reason the Hollywood leftist elite hate Arnold is the realization and fear that he WILL eviscerate the confiscatory warm and fuzzy spending of Sacramento.
Schwarzenegger is not the best conservative candidate�but he is the conservative's best hope for implementing the incremental necessities to prepare the battlefield for a subsequent conservative renaissance.
Rush said conservatives "need to stop being timid, pessimistic and insecure." However, conservatives (and conservative sycophants) need to be realistic and establish goals and objectives that are both realistic and attainable.
� 2003 Geoff Metcalf - All Rights Reserved
"Geoff Metcalf is a nationally syndicated radio talk show host for TALK AMERICA and a veteran media performer. He has had an eclectic professional background covering a wide spectrum of radio, television, magazine, and newspapers. A former Green Beret and retired Army officer he is in great demand as a speaker. . Visit Geoff's Web Site: www.geoffmetcalf.com. While you're at it - pick up a copy of Geoff's latest book! E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
"Politicians, and career bureaucrats have a highly developed skill of �snatching defeat from the jaws of victory�. If the dialectic starts off with �Thesis: Military competence��the inevitable �Antithesis is Political meddling��any homogenized Synthesis is a different flavor of failure."