Shutdown Hangover for GOP?

ShutdownThumb3by C. Edmund Wright   11/20/14
It’s hard to go more than a few hours without being slapped in the face with some example how out-of-touch Washington’s wizards are with the country they rule. And there is no more compelling example of this dynamic than the retrograde opinion of Ted Cruz’ filibuster and the resultant “shutdown,” concerning which there is still a wrongheaded delusion held by almost everyone in town.

Inside Washington, the Republican establishment — and everyone else in the beltway to Manhattan media bubble for that matter — is still obsessed with the few days of shutdown late last year. They are all convinced that it did great damage to the Republican Party, and moreover, will do so in every instance the government is shuttered in perpetuity. It’s our elitists’ first grade equation: shutdown = Republican disaster, period. John Boehner can’t think past it, and neither can Mitch McConnell, Karl Rove, Bret Baier, Brit Hume — or apparently anyone else in either the 202 or 212 area codes not named Ted Cruz.

Certainly not the editorial board of the embarrassingly stodgy and formulaically conventional Wall Street Journal, which labeled Cruz a “minority maker” for this tactics. And no, they haven’t revised their opinion, the 2014 midterms be damned.[pullquote]This arrogance/ignorance combination is driven largely by one factor: total isolation from the rest of the country by almost everyone involved in taxing, regulating, and legislating us…[/pullquote]

Yet outside of glares given at Washington cocktail parties by reporters, there is no evidence this is the case. Not even a smidgen. In fact, there is considerable evidence to the contrary. You might remember the 2014 midterms? You know, the very thing the WSJ was referring to with the phrase “minority maker.”

Nonetheless, the power elites remain convinced they are right even though they could not possibly be more wrong. This arrogance/ignorance combination is driven largely by one factor: total isolation from the rest of the country by almost everyone involved in taxing, regulating, and legislating us as well as those who comment on them for a living. None of them know anything about us. It’s two separate planets, as the red/blue map shows.

Outside that bubble of the shutdown is but a distant memory. Actually, many in the real world welcomed the shutdown — and/or realized that there was really no shutdown at all. The only PR damage was that done to the liberal Democrat idea of a bureaucratic state of totalitarianism, as videos of government union thugs going wild went viral. Only perhaps the ‘Gruber stupidity voters’ — not to mention the stupidity media and the stupidity GOP establishment types — are still hung up on the shutdown.

Those too smart for Gruber and ObamaCare from the get go realized from day one that the horror of the reality of ObamaCare would far outstrip the phony problems caused by a faux shutdown. We all like Cruz even more as a result.

If the Republican establishment was half as smart as they think they are, they would be crediting Cruz — and his Tea Party supporters — with planting the flag that ultimately resulted in yet another midterm wipeout of the Democrats. With that wipeout, a mandate is indeed clear. Do what you have to do to shut Obama down, and if that means the entire government — so be it.

Cruz remains steadfast in his convictions. In an interview a couple months after the filibuster, Cruz said “I have a difference of opinion on how Republicans win. Some in the Washington establishment think Republicans win elections by keeping their heads down and not rocking the boat — not making any waves — and hoping we win in November. I think the way we win is by taking a stand for principle.”

And indeed history is on his side. Rocking the boat and standing for principle worked pretty well in the American Revolution, and also in 1980, 84, 94, and 2010. Playing it safe was an exploding cigar in 1992, 96, 2008 and 2012. And standing for principle is also the right thing to do.

Concerning the 2014 midterms, ObamaCare was the number one issue on the minds of voters, who seemed more capable of understanding that ObamaCare is the jobs issue, is the issue of the economy, is the issue of debt, and is exhibit A in the arrogance and totalitarian reality that is the left’s vision of governance. No WTFthanks to the GOP establishment messaging machine however. The sooner in the campaign Republican candidates figured this out, the larger their margins were. Thom Tillis barely got there in time in North Carolina, in a race that should have been 12 points.

Now as a Republican House and Senate will face Obama and his increasing threats to go around Congress on amnesty, environmental regulations tied to global warming, not to mention what he might do on ObamaCare, another shutdown or three might be called for. Again, the devastation of amnesty, an out-of-control EPA — and yes, still ObamaCare — will be far more important to most of the nation than having our precious bloated inefficient and corrupt government pretend to shut down for a few hours.

This is common sense. Washington naturally misapprehends the situation. It’s bad enough that the pusillanimous McConnell and Boehner have tried to take any kind of shutdown off the table as a result of this illusion, but lately even Mike Lee — Cruz’s heretofore soulmate — has rushed in front of reporters to denounce the notion. At least with respects to executive action on amnesty.

Then there’s that whirling dervish of recent incoherence Rand Paul, who called the shutdown a “dumb idea” — yet said he might vote for it again.

And let’s not forget Hume, who was furrowing his brow and earnestly and painfully insisting in his best conventional wisdom jargon that the GOP would get the blame for any shutdown.

All of this leads us to some conclusions: first among them is that Cruz is a uniquely fearless leader with acute situational awareness. He alone seems to realize that the real problem was not the bind he put other Republicans in, but the fact that they did not all join him. “All 45 Republicans should have stood together,” Cruz said in Sarasota.” The Washington establishment once against refused to listen to the American people and just made the problem worse.”

He’s right. People in Washington don’t listen to anyone not in Washington — unless they work for a New York media outlet — or are a paid professional crony liberal like Jonathon Gruber. Washington is unfamiliar with us now. The elites are clueless, even after the midterms. And now it appears that even Senators Paul and Lee have been infected with Potomac Fever. Many on Fox News are long gone. Thank God for talk radio and the internet!

We might need to quarantine Cruz, to make sure he doesn’t get contaminated. Because we might need him to shut this sucker down again soon. And it will be a good thing. We’ll call it Cruz Control.


CEdmundWrightC. Edmund Wright is contributor to StubbornThings, American Thinker, Newsmax TV, Talk Radio Network and author of WTF? How Karl Rove and the Establishment Lost…Again. • (1071 views)

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8 Responses to Shutdown Hangover for GOP?

  1. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    This arrogance/ignorance combination is driven largely by one factor: total isolation from the rest of the country by almost everyone involved in taxing, regulating, and legislating us as well as those who comment on them for a living.

    I don’t doubt that that is partially true. But the nature of the political class has always been to be arrogant. The point of our form of limited government is to put some reins on these egomaniacs.

    Surely most of you remember the “class president” types from high school or college. It’s not that these were bad people, per se. But what drove them seemed to be the drive simply to be popular, or to gain status, or — in the worst of cases as is typical today — to “fundamentally transform” something that is otherwise working quite well, thank you. These people were, for all intents and purposes, a different type of people.

    One of the most astonishing things to me is how people (particularly women, if you ask me, but I’d be glad to gain input from the ladies present) blindly trust politicians. They assume good motives. They are astonished, if not offended, if you tell them that politicians typically lie or stretch the truth. And if I’m a little tough on the ladies here it’s because I know a thing or two about the predatory nature of men. Women were historically taught to be a little careful of their virtue, and for good reason. Men will say and do anything in the short-term for that virtue.

    And this is no less true of gaining your vote as well. And, yes, many men have fallen prey to this as well. They really do believe what the politicians (at least one on “their” side) are saying. It’s as if our entire culture has regressed to Kindergarten. In Kindergarten it it absolutely vital that the little kiddies listen to the teacher when she says “Don’t run with scissors and look both ways before crossing the street.”

    But at some point we are supposed to grow up and do some of the thinking on our own. But that doesn’t appear to be happening on a large scale in America anymore. We seem more attracted to novelty and superficially pleasing ideas than integrity, truth, or workability.

    It’s true that we need more conservatives in government. But what we need most of all is to reduce the footprint of government, particularly on the national level. The footprint of the type of person attracted to government needs to be reduced. And this will be particularly difficult to do because too many people mindlessly believe the lies and “good intentions” of the politicians. If you would look at one and all of them as, at best, necessary evils, then we might be getting somewhere. Remember that glib, smarmy, superficial class president type from high school? That is almost alway who you are voting for, in either party.

  2. Timothy Lane says:

    The notion that the shutdown hurt the GOP is based on polling at the time, which showed a Democrat resurgence. Fortunately for the GOP, the Obamacare website meltdown largely canceled that, and continued scandals over the next year made the 2014 victory nearly inevitable. (There certainly was little or nothing the GOP did to bring it about, though some individual candidates shone.) One cannot count on such favors again. Nor is there a need for a total shutdown. They have many other ways to deal with the issue — including passing individual appropriations bills (which is what they’re supposed to do) and making sure the one that deals with Homeland Security bars funding the amnesty. If Obama vetoes that, only one department will be (very partially) shut down.

  3. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    At the time of the last “government shutdown”, I explained to both timorous conservatives and gloating Leftists that they obviously didn’t understand what Cruz was doing, i.e. rallying and expanding the base. And so it has transpired.

    As I like to remind people about our representatives, they are all politicians and none are perfect, including Cruz. Therefore, we should not look for saviors, but for strong people with character and a grounding in the Constitution. This is a description of Senator Cruz.

    • NAHALKIDES NAHALKIDES says:

      Cruz is so good it actually hurts me that he’s so wrong on immigration. You’d think a guy that bright would realize that if we don’t shut off the flow of new Democrats, we’re going to lose the country. If he would come around on that, I’d support his bid for the Presidency, and as everyone at ST knows, I’m a very hard man to satisfy when it comes to Presidential candidates!

      • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

        I do not know his full position on immigration. But I think it is safe to say that someone in his position must decide which battles to fight. The MSM has gone out of its way to put a target on him and he may simply think that this is not the time to tackle yet another huge issue.

        I have only met the man once and that was not much more than a handshake. Yet I think it is likely that I will meet him again. I hope to discuss immigration with him then.

        My main concern with his running for the presidency is his youth. We have had a string of 40 or near 40 somethings and the results have not been encouraging.

  4. Rosalys says:

    Shutdown? What shutdown? I would never have known about a shutdown if the ubiquitous main stream media hadn’t blathered on about it so. It wasn’t anything I could see with my own eyes; quite the opposite! I watched the government roll along as usual! Oh, that they would shut down periodically for (Constitutional) maintenance and give us a breather! As for the limp-wristed, noodle-spined GOP, why don’t they just vehemently refuse to accept responsibility, especially for something that never happened?

  5. David Ray says:

    Last shut down, the Narcissist-in-Chief actually spent money to close off the WWII memorial which was outside. That was a selfish and childish act, yet Karl Rove didn’t think it was a winning strategy to point that out.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      I said repeatedly (here and on NRO) during and after the shutdown that it might have worked politically if the GOP could only communicate the truth that Obama’s shills (the synoptic media) refused to do. Boehner at once point had an address to the press in which he made some obscure (to most people) point without mentioning all the funding bills that Harry Wormwood Reid ignored, or the spiteful, petulant closing down of the World War II memorial, parking at Mount Vernon, and various other places (which was unprecedented). Perhaps they would have suffered politically anyway, but that made it impossible.

      Of course, Boehner never really wanted the shutdown, so it’s no surprise that he wasn’t willing to try to make it work. And if this had led to a Republican loss in 2014, as many people thought was possible before the Obama Gang’s repeated botch-ups rescued the party (Bill Cassidy, at a big rally yesterday, thanked the man who made his big polling lead possible — Obama), well, you can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs.

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