Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“I am favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances and for any excuse, for any reason, whenever it's possible.”     Milton Friedman

February 21, 2008

More on Obama’s Doublespeak

by Stephen Littau

Last week I wrote a post about how Barack Obama was trying to have it both ways on the Second Amendment. Ken Blackwell at Townhall.com, however, believes that Obama’s doublespeak about the Second Amendment (among some of Obama’s other statements) reveals a disturbing pattern in his attitudes about individual rights and a host of other issues:

Yet while Mr. Obama says he supports your Second Amendment rights, he also says he supports that gun ban. He went on to say that local governments should be able to enact any gun control laws they consider necessary to end gun violence, and that any such measures are constitutional.
What kind of gun rights does he supposedly support? What kind of “right” do you have, when the government can completely rob you of 100% of the exercise of that right, anytime they decide they have a good reason?

That’s like saying you have the right to worship as you choose, but the government has the power to ban attending church. Or that you have the right to free speech, but that government has the power to stop you from speaking about any subject it wants. Or that you have the right against unreasonable searches and seizures, but that anything the government wants to search at your house is automatically reasonable.

A right that the government can completely take away at any time is no right at all.

So to say that the Second Amendment means you can own guns, but that the city where you live can ban all gun ownership, then you have no Second Amendment rights at all.

I truly hope that someone will have an opportunity to ask Obama if he really believes that local governments can toss aside the Constitution whenever convenient (though I have a hard time believing that Obama would restrict federal agents to the Constitution while giving local law enforcement carte blanche to violate basic civil liberties of citizens). As if doublespeak on the Constitution wasn’t enough, we can expect doublespeak on many other issues which concern such issues as the economy, terrorism, and growing government.

The article continues:

This is what Americans could expect from a President Obama. He’ll wax eloquent about your rights, but then say government can take away whatever part of them—or all of them—that it wants.

It’s the disturbing pattern that’s starting to emerge of Mr. Obama announcing a principle or a goal, then endorsing policies that are the exact opposite of what would promote that principle or goal. It’s political-doublespeak. It’s Orwellian. In fact, it’s Clintonian.

Look for this pattern across the board. This is how he’ll empower private markets, by increasing government control. He’ll preserve our private-market healthcare system, by having government take it over. He’ll lower taxes, by raising them. He’ll cut government, by increasing government spending. He’ll create jobs, by raising taxes and fees on business […]

I’m sure there will be even more Obama doublespeak as the campaign wears on. I wouldn’t be too surprised if he proposed a new cabinet level position such as The Ministry Department of Truth.

TrackBack URI: http://www.thelibertypapers.org/2008/02/21/more-on-obama%e2%80%99s-doublespeak/trackback/
Read more posts from
• • •

58 Comments

  1. What kind of “right” do you have, when the government can completely rob you of 100% of the exercise of that right, anytime they decide they have a good reason?

    That’s pretty much how the Fourth Amendment works: If the legislature decides, and the courts agree, that a search is “reasonable,” then you have no right to refuse.

    Heller will be a two-part decision:

    (1) “individual right” versus “state power”?

    (2) If “individual right,” then what standard of review?

    It would not surprise me at all if the Court found the Second Amendment to guarantee an individual right, but then imposed a weak “reasonableness” standard of review. They are certainly not going to impose an onerous strict scrutiny standard comparable to the First Amendment. No way.

    Comment by KipEsquire — February 21, 2008 @ 12:29 pm
  2. Hate to break it to you, Stephen, but the words “Compelling State Interest” have been causing this kind of doublethink long before Obama hit the scene.

    Personally, I’m waiting for Hillary to propose MiniPlenty and MiniLuv.

    Comment by Quincy — February 21, 2008 @ 1:05 pm
  3. You have a point there Quincy. There’s plenty of doublespeak to go around. As Obama gains traction, we need to make sure he doesn’t get a pass though.

    Comment by Stephen Littau — February 21, 2008 @ 1:12 pm
  4. I never really trusted obama seeing as how despite his grandiloquence he never seemed to display a consistent message to me. And to think poor Doug voted for this sort of fast-talking politician…. I’m almost rooting for Hillary just to teach the country a lesson- then I remember if she is our President and we have an undivided Democratic government, it will be too late for America the Beautiful.

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 3:13 pm
  5. NA,

    I don’t regret my vote in the primary because I think Hillary would be even worse.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — February 21, 2008 @ 3:15 pm
  6. Stephen,

    How dare you criticize the savior of our souls, the man who has made us all proud to be Americans for the first time in our lives !

    Don’t you realize that if we have hope and we want change, then we can bring that change and restore the hope of the nation ? But it will only happen if we hope for change

    :)

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — February 21, 2008 @ 3:16 pm
  7. I know; leave it to me to leave a turd in the punch bowl :)

    Back to the talking points:

    War is Peace

    Freedom is Slavery

    Ignorance is Strength

    Comment by Stephen Littau — February 21, 2008 @ 3:21 pm
  8. NA, Doug’s vote for Obama was a strategic vote to stop Hillary. I agree, she is worse. If my primary would have been an open primary, I would have done the same thing.

    Comment by Stephen Littau — February 21, 2008 @ 3:23 pm
  9. NA,

    I’m almost rooting for Hillary just to teach the country a lesson

    Me too, actually. I’d never consider voting for her because I don’t play that whole “spoiler” game, but since she represents pretty much the exact opposite of my beliefs and because I think her presidency would be a complete disaster (since she’s incapable of working with people) if I can’t have a libertarian-leaning president get elected I’d much rather see the worst, most incompetent statist get elected because I think she’d turn the entire country against her and discredit most of the programs she pushes with her, shall we say, “diplomatically-challenged” personality.

    Watching the worst example of statism go down in flames while in office may actually be the best possible thing for the pro-freedom movement in the long run…it lets people know exactly what the consequences of the statist ideology are.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 3:40 pm
  10. I know Doug, I was just saying it’s too bad that one must “Block” a candidate as opposed to voting for one.

    And this is bothering me:

    http://www.wthr.com/Global/story.asp?S=6109957

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 3:41 pm
  11. Stephen,

    Doug’s vote for Obama was a strategic vote to stop Hillary.

    A vote for the least worst candidate is still a vote for a bad candidate. And putting the more palatable version of bad policy into office only hides the consequences of that bad policy.

    Voting for someone you don’t think is a good candidate in order to deny someone you think might be a worse candidate a chance at office is horrible strategy. Say Obama does get elected…his policy platform isn’t markedly different from Hillary’s and he’s got a knack for winning people over. Do you really want a statist who can do a better job of selling his policies to get into office?

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 3:45 pm
  12. I would have abstained from voting in Doug’s position, as protesting all options is better than the guilt I would personally have for voting Obama. But it was a primary, and to each his own. I’m not here to pass judgement. It seems that to often on this site people attack the contributors. That is ludicrous, you all do a fine job.

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 3:47 pm
  13. U.C.

    Hillary as President would be like Nixon or LBJ redux.

    Obama as President is likely to be more along the lines of Jimmy Carter.

    Given the choice, I’ll suffer under the second one for a few years.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — February 21, 2008 @ 3:48 pm
  14. Doug,

    I don’t regret my vote in the primary because I think Hillary would be even worse.

    Well, actually that means you should regret your vote in the primary. A vote for Obama is merely a vote for a friendlier, more incremental (and therefore longer-lasting) form of statism.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 3:48 pm
  15. Doug,

    Hillary as President would be like Nixon or LBJ redux.

    Nixon got forced out of office in disgrace (and replaced by a decent guy with Ford) and almost ended up in prison. LBJ was essentially forced out of office after his first full term because he was such a disaster. We should be so lucky.

    Obama as President is likely to be more along the lines of Jimmy Carter.

    Obama’s a lot more competent and charismatic than Carter ever was. I could actually see him being more of an FDR.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 3:51 pm
  16. Watching the worst example of statism go down in flames while in office may actually be the best possible thing for the pro-freedom movement in the long run…

    If that were true, conservatives would have learned something from Bush’s presidency and leapt into Paul’s open arms, despite his flaws. Instead, they overwhelmingly voted for more statism because they still haven’t recognized the root cause. Like a battered wife, they excuse the faults and tell themselves it’ll somehow be different next time.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 3:55 pm
  17. Another FDR and we might as well be the USSA.

    “When liberty is taken away by force it can be restored by force. When it is relinquished voluntarily by default it can never be recovered.”

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 3:56 pm
  18. “Like a battered wife, they excuse the faults and tell themselves it’ll somehow be different next time.”

    such a great analogy! I think conservatives are too under the thumb of talk-radio types to defect to libertarianism, I listened to the Savage radio and the man wouldn’t touch the topic of libertarianism. I also had the same experience with Sean Hannity etc. Only Tucker Carlson seems to be comfortable with Libertarianism at all.

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 3:58 pm
  19. NA,

    It seems that too often on this site people attack the contributors. That is ludicrous, you all do a fine job.

    Thanks, much appreciated. But even the people who get angry and attack us can have some valid reasons for doing so at times so I try not to judge them too harshly if they’re willing to rationally discuss their reasons for doing so :) Even uncivil discourse can be beneficial sometimes.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 3:58 pm
  20. [quote]Like a battered wife, they excuse the faults and tell themselves it’ll somehow be different next time.[/quote]

    such a great analogy! I think conservatives are too under the thumb of talk-radio types to defect to libertarianism, I listened to the Savage radio and the man wouldn’t touch the topic of libertarianism. I also had the same experience with Sean Hannity etc. Only Tucker Carlson seems to be comfortable with Libertarianism at all.

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 3:59 pm
  21. NA,

    I think conservatives are too under the thumb of talk-radio types to defect to libertarianism

    I don’t know about that. I’ve got some friends who are extremely conservative and politically active and often we’re able to find common ground on the preferred solutions for most issues even though we disagree on the issues themselves. Most of them understand that although I don’t agree with their religion or morality I have no interest in stripping them of their right to practice their faith, and they’re usually willing to concede that it’s wrong when people of their faith try to force me to accept their ways through the rule of law. If you engage them, conservatives are like anyone else…they’re willing to compromise and find a win-win solution if you show them that solution’s in their self-interest as well. Most people really aren’t monsters.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 4:04 pm
  22. Jeff,

    If that were true, conservatives would have learned something from Bush’s presidency and leapt into Paul’s open arms, despite his flaws.

    No offense, but if Ron Paul had run a serious campaign I think that they would have. How the official campaign conducted their business was nothing short of a joke and most of his successes were in spite of his personal efforts, not because of them. The spontaneous grassroots efforts that Paul had nothing to do with are what kept him in the race.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 4:08 pm
  23. Jeff,

    If that were true, conservatives would have learned something from Bush’s presidency and leapt into Paul’s open arms, despite his flaws. Instead, they overwhelmingly voted for more statism because they still haven’t recognized the root cause.

    Good point. I still will never understand why people actually fall for the politicians’ ruse that the solution to failed government policies is more intrusive government policies.

    Comment by Brad Warbiany — February 21, 2008 @ 4:13 pm
  24. No, even the best-case scenario would have been a begrudging nomination a la McCain. We only stood a chance because the pro-war conservatives were divided amongst a handful of candidates.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 4:15 pm
  25. I still will never understand why people actually fall for the politicians’ ruse that the solution to failed government policies is more intrusive government policies.

    Upbringing. Everyone alive was raised in a very statist society, so they assume the status quo exists for a good reason and they don’t care enough to dig deeper. Since they accept government intervention as a given, they relentlessly seek the magical amount.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 4:20 pm
  26. Jeff,

    Okay, that was pretty good :) If only they’d do one about taxation and authoritarianism instead of just smoking.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 4:26 pm
  27. “they”? It’s up to us. That’s the kind of creative approach to voter education that might just work. The garden-variety stuff obviously hasn’t worked.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 4:30 pm
  28. No, even the best-case scenario would have been a begrudging nomination a la McCain.

    A begrudging nomination is still a win. Because of his campaign staff’s neglect of almost every single aspect of running a serious national campaign (from infrastructure to press relations) Ron Paul took himself out of the running. If he’d been more like Tancredo or Huckabee on the issues nobody would have even noticed him.

    He had the best issues by far and there was a market for them among conservatives but he did such a poor job of selling them to mainstream voters that most of the people I knew who were voting still had no idea who he was come election time. That’s not a matter of people rejecting his ideas, that’s a matter of people having never heard of the guy because he did such a terrible job of campaigning outside of the Internet.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 4:38 pm
  29. Jeff,

    “they”? It’s up to us. That’s the kind of creative approach to voter education that might just work.

    My singing and dancing suck and my camerawork is extremely shaky and lacks a dramatic eye. :)

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 4:40 pm
  30. most of the people I knew who were voting still had no idea who he was come election time.

    That doesn’t speak well of your efforts. =P

    He had the best issues by far and there was a market for them among conservatives but he did such a poor job of selling them to mainstream voters

    I realize they botched an incredible opportunity. Believe me, I do.

    I’m only trying to disprove your premise in paragraph 2 at 3:40. If mainstream voters had truly learned any sort of lesson, Paul’s autopilot campaign still would have worked. If people had truly learned a lesson from Bush, the “fringe” label would have been an asset to Paul. People would have been clamoring to hear more about the guy with the weird ideas.

    That wasn’t the case. They simply weren’t looking to challenge any of their assumptions. A better communicator might have been able to talk them into it, but that’s a different story. They were just looking for a more competent statist.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 4:55 pm
  31. Jeff,

    That doesn’t speak well of your efforts.

    I convinced three people who’d never heard of the guy to vote for him. From what I saw the only people that most Paul supporters talked to were other people who were already Paul supporters =P

    I’m only trying to disprove your premise in paragraph 2 at 3:40. If mainstream voters had truly learned any sort of lesson, Paul’s autopilot campaign still would have worked.

    Seriously I’ll tell you exactly what my mom (a politician herself) told me when the gubernatorial candidate I worked for (who was also very cheap with his advertising bucks) lost his election. People don’t vote for someone they don’t know, regardless of how good his issues are.

    The majority of people didn’t vote for Ron Paul because the majority of people didn’t know who the hell he was. Had he hired a real press coordinator, someone who could have coached him and helped him stay focused in the debates (when he often jumped from tangent to tangent) and spent some money on decent and frequent TV advertising I think he actually would have made this a race…his issues were so much better than his opponents’. But he didn’t, so most people didn’t think it was worth their time to hear what he had to say.

    That’s not a knock on the more sane grassroots, by the way…frankly, I thought they did an absolutely remarkable job of keeping his campaign alive. It’s almost unheard of with so little direction from up top.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 5:10 pm
  32. UC,

    “I don’t know about that. I’ve got some friends who are extremely conservative and politically active and often we’re able to find common ground on the preferred solutions for most issues even though we disagree on the issues themselves. Most of them understand that although I don’t agree with their religion or morality I have no interest in stripping them of their right to practice their faith, and they’re usually willing to concede that it’s wrong when people of their faith try to force me to accept their ways through the rule of law. If you engage them, conservatives are like anyone else…they’re willing to compromise and find a win-win solution if you show them that solution’s in their self-interest as well. Most people really aren’t monsters.”

    I was a conservative myself, but I defected to the small-l libertarian ideology of the founding fathers. My point is that conservatives are unwilling to desert the Republican mainstream and that the Conservative Elites (pundits) are encouraging loyalty to the same neoconservative ideology that has been choking the Republican party for so long. I would love to say “I am a proud Republican, a Conservative/Libertarian” but I cannot due to the terrible direction of the party. I myself have spoken with many
    “mainstream” conservatives and they agree with me on many things, (it helps that I share their faith) but regardless of whatever personal discourse the bulk of the Conservatives will not leave the ranks and join whatever Libertarian movement of the day there is (Ron Paul ’08 is a good example). That’s what I see.

    Comment by NA — February 21, 2008 @ 5:11 pm
  33. NA,

    My point is that conservatives are unwilling to desert the Republican mainstream and that the Conservative Elites (pundits) are encouraging loyalty to the same neoconservative ideology that has been choking the Republican party for so long.

    Why not? You did it. So did I (raised in a very conservative household). Most of the time when I encounter intelligent people who identify as strictly conservative it’s only because nobody’s given them an effective explanation of libertarianism. They often think that if you believe in drug legalization or gay marriage or whatever else, it must be because you’re a crazy gay nutjob who does drugs. Once they realize that you can be both personally conservative and politically liberal on social issues they’re often willing to give libertarianism a serious look…and buy in once they realize it’s in their own best interests.

    It’s all about the sales pitch. It’s always about the sales pitch.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 5:20 pm
  34. the bulk of the Conservatives will not leave the ranks and join whatever Libertarian movement of the day there is (Ron Paul ‘08 is a good example).

    They won’t break ranks for a guy they don’t think is a serious candidate. And, with apologies to Jeff, because of how he ran his campaign Ron Paul was never really a serious candidate. But they broke ranks on Reagan, and they really broke ranks on Goldwater. Again, all about the sales pitch (and, to a degree, the salesman).

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 5:24 pm
  35. The majority of people didn’t vote for Ron Paul because the majority of people didn’t know who the hell he was.

    Right, but 17% of the voters did have a basic understanding of his candidacy. That’s faaar more than the also-rans and those are the influential 17% anyways. That 17% knew damn well that Paul was a man advocating real change. If they wanted real change, they would have picked him up and carried him to the nomination. Instead, they dismissed him as a loon for challenging things that everyone accepted as a given.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 5:24 pm
  36. Jeff,

    Right, but 17% of the voters did have a basic understanding of his candidacy.

    They may have had a basic understanding of his issues, but they also saw him as someone whose most vocal supporters were usually “truthers” and crazy people. Often they seemed to like him personally when he appeared on things like Leno, or Bill Maher, but he didn’t do enough of that which is mainly a factor of how poorly his campaign did in selling their candidate to the press…his most concentrated appearances in the mainstream press that I saw was when he was having to defend himself against charges that he was a racist because of the newsletters. Beyond that, I rarely saw the guy. And since I was actually paying attention to the race, I’m assuming the average voter saw even less of him.

    Instead, they dismissed him as a loon for challenging things that everyone accepted as a given.

    They dismissed him as a loon because his most visible and vocal supporters were either crazy people or outsiders, he never developed much a presence for himself outside of the Internet, and because except for Iraq he never focused on any issues that resounded with voters. People on the Internet may care about fiat currencies and the gold standard…the other 99.9% of the electorate doesn’t give a shit. He was dismissed as a loon because he wasn’t talking about issues that the voters he was trying to appeal to cared about.

    Again, all about the sales pitch.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 5:34 pm
  37. And, with apologies to Jeff, because of how he ran his campaign Ron Paul was never really a serious candidate. But they broke ranks on Reagan, and they really broke ranks on Goldwater.

    You’re still confusing two issues. We know a good campaigner can always win regardless of issues. We know Paul wasn’t a good campaigner. That’s not disputed.

    Your assertion was that a bad statist administration would open the eyes of the masses. If that were the case, Paul could have won by simply showing up at the debates. Water-cooler talk alone would have propelled him to the nomination. That didn’t happen because people didn’t want real change.

    Yes, a Reagan could have sold them on it anyways, but that’s a different matter. If there was a real shift in the public consciousness, even a campaigner as bad as Paul could have beaten that pathetic field of statists.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 5:36 pm
  38. They may have had a basic understanding of his issues, but they also saw him as someone whose most vocal supporters were usually “truthers” and crazy people.

    So did I. I had to work with some pretty ridiculous people talking about pretty ridiculous things. But there’s a difference between me Joe Sixpack: I wanted real change, so I looked past it.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 5:42 pm
  39. Jeff,

    Your assertion was that a bad statist administration would open the eyes of the masses.

    Despite his (to me) quite obvious stupidity, George W. Bush is an excellent campaigner, and he’s got some people skills and can be charming when he wants to be (developed, I suspect, as a survival skill because he’s been a fuck-up at pretty much everything in his life). He’s also an accomplished liar and a Republican candidate who ran on a libertarian platform in 2000, got a pass on his big-government ways in 2004 because of the war, and still pays some lip service to the idea of small government (even if he’s never practiced it).

    Hillary isn’t any of those things.

    She is (with apologies to any women on this thread) a miserable spiteful bitch who completely fucked up the only major project she’s ever been put in charge of (her husband’s health care plan) mainly because she’s incapable of working with other people and she has few (if any) personal skills to compensate for it. She was a large part of the reason the Dems got booted in ’94. And she’s a Democrat who doesn’t pay any lip service at all to the idea of small government. Simply put, while Bush was a horrible statist, he just wasn’t horrible enough…Hillary is.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 5:48 pm
  40. Simply put, while Bush was a horrible statist, he just wasn’t horrible enough…Hillary is.

    If she somehow manages to win the nomination, I’d love to place a bet on that.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 5:55 pm
  41. Jeff,

    So did I. I had to work with some pretty ridiculous people talking about pretty ridiculous things. But there’s a difference between me Joe Sixpack: I wanted real change, so I looked past it.

    It’s no trick to sell your ideas to someone who’s already looking to buy. The trick is convincing the disinterested voter that you’re selling something he wants. And that’s where the problem children that the Paul campaign never really got a handle on ended up working against you. Most of those guys are very likely people who weren’t talking civilly to anyone but other like-minded Paul supporters, and when they’re your primary salesmen you’re going to have trouble.

    But that was really Ron Paul’s fault and not the volunteers’. At some point every political candidate out there has got to take ownership of his message and his campaign to keep everybody focused (because it is, after all, his message that he’s trying to sell). Ron Paul never really seemed to do that…he just thought that by letting things run spontaneously as they had from the grassroots it would all work out. The end result of that was that the campaign did a lot of drifting and the candidate let his opponents define him before he defined himself and it cost him the mainstream voters.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 5:57 pm
  42. Jeff,

    If she somehow manages to win the nomination, I’d love to place a bet on that.

    Done…$20 says that if she’s elected President the Republicans will win Congressional seats back in 2010 and she’ll be out after one term.

    Moot point, of course, because she’s not going to win.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 6:00 pm
  43. P.S. You’re forgetting about the flip-side of freedom; Hillary pays lip service to the pro-freedom portion of the Democratic platform.

    You’re counting on the base of the Democratic party to give an honest analysis of their own leader. Fat chance. They’ll just keep telling themselves that a Republican would have been even worse.

    You don’t hear any Republicans thinking they would have been better off with Bush or Kerry, do you? You and I both know it’s probably true, but they’re too wedded to their team.

    There won’t be any shift in the mainstream thinking until people start to realize the two-party system is a symptom of a structural flaw in our elections, not some inherent truth.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 6:03 pm
  44. It’s no trick to sell your ideas to someone who’s already looking to buy.

    That’s exactly my point, though. Even after 7 years of Dubya, Republicans still weren’t looking to buy real change. Hillary would be no different. She’d just spur another round of superficial change.

    Done…$20 says that if she’s elected President the Republicans will win Congressional seats back in 2010 and she’ll be out after one term.

    No, I’m sure you’re right about that part. My point is that those Republican victors will all be statists too. The faces and jerseys will continue to change, but policy won’t.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 6:09 pm
  45. Jeff,

    You’re counting on the base of the Democratic party to give an honest analysis of their own leader. Fat chance. They’ll just keep telling themselves that a Republican would have been even worse.

    Their base is a lot smaller than you’re giving it credit for. The only reason the Dems have Congress now is because Bush and the GOP Congress did such a horrible job when they had complete control that the moderates finally gave up on them…before 2006 the Democrats weren’t even an afterthought. Give the Dems two years in charge with Hillary at the controls and the centrists will desert them en masse.

    Pre-1994 the Democrats controlled Congress for what, 40 years? Post-94 the Republicans controlled it for 12. Based on how things are shaping up in Iraq and the economy I see an even shorter tenure for the party currently in charge if they get one of their own in the White House.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 6:18 pm
  46. Jeff,

    My point is that those Republican victors will all be statists too

    Then it looks like you’ve got some work to do to insure that the representatives and senators your area sends aren’t a part of the problem. :)

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 6:20 pm
  47. Yup, we’re on it.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 21, 2008 @ 6:27 pm
  48. Stephen,
    I am suprised at, what I consider, to be a shortsighted argument. The issue, as with any, is not black and white, and thus I do not regard Obama to be contradicting, or doublespeaking…

    The 2nd amendment gives right to bear arms. It does not elaborate as to what type of arms, and I’m sure we all agree that we wouldn’t want our communities ridden with nuclear arms. Thus, there is that middle compromise that lies in the gray where most issues end up in, more or less (except on the edge of Ocam’s razor). I believe, based on subjective principle and objective logic, that one must support laws banning/regulating “arms”, while also being even more careful to maintain and uphold the 2nd amendment, as is with any issue against the constitution.

    Comment by Chris Matera — February 21, 2008 @ 10:17 pm
  49. Chris,

    It does not elaborate as to what type of arms, and I’m sure we all agree that we wouldn’t want our communities ridden with nuclear arms.

    Why not? If Iran and North Korea haven’t yet been able to build a functional nuclear weapon what makes you think your neighbors are going to be able to pull it off? Do your neighbors have billions of dollars to spend on a nuclear deterrent for home defense? Do you live in a neighborhood that features a lot of buildings capable of meeting nuclear containment protocols or are your neighbors just immune to radiation? Do your neighbors have their own silos, delivery systems, and a working expertise in servicing nuclear technology to keep their warheads functional?

    God, I hate that stupid argument…it’s like people for gun control think that the suburbs are filled with multi-billionaire psychopaths who are just waiting to grab surplus MX missiles. It’s not reality.

    As for real weapons arguments, I’m fine with people owning pretty much any kind of weapon they want. It’s not like everyone is going to go out and buy themselves a gross of Daisy-Cutters and MOABs…because what would be the point? The more powerful the weapon the more it costs, the more difficult it is to use and the less useful it is for home or personal defense. And people who would have the means to acquire a super-weapon and the competence to use it generally aren’t stupid or crazy enough to want to buy one.

    “Hey Bob…look at this thermobaric bomb I’ve got sitting in my garage.”

    “That’s great, Fred, what are you going to do with it?”

    “Ummmm…pretty much leave it sitting in my garage to scare off burglars.”

    I believe, based on subjective principle and objective logic, that one must support laws banning/regulating “arms”, while also being even more careful to maintain and uphold the 2nd amendment, as is with any issue against the constitution.

    If you were trying to make an argument based on logic you wouldn’t have used the “nuke” argument. You’d have gone with something realistic like a bazooka or a tank or landmines or a sniper rifle capable of shooting through an armored limo…none of which I have a problem with anyone owning.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 21, 2008 @ 11:00 pm
  50. And people who would have the means to acquire a super-weapon and the competence to use it generally aren’t stupid or crazy enough to want to buy one.

    Not to mention that anyone with the financial wherewithal and the desire to find something like that will find it, illegal or not.

    International law didn’t stop North Korea from getting a nuke. British law hasn’t removed guns from their society. American law can’t stop someone here from getting an illegal firearm or illegal drugs.

    What makes one think that laws are going to stop a determined person of ample means from getting a hold of anything they want?

    Comment by Brad Warbiany — February 21, 2008 @ 11:26 pm
  51. [...] unknown wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptLast week I wrote a post about how Barack Obama was trying to have it both ways on the Second Amendment. Ken Blackwell at Townhall.com, however, believes that Obama’s doublespeak about the Second Amendment (among some of Obama’s other … Read the rest of this great post here Posted by [...]

    Pingback by Presidential election 2008 |Republicans Vs. Democrats » More on Obama’s Doublespeak — February 22, 2008 @ 2:07 am
  52. Why get all excited? In the upcoming presidential election, we have a choice between Fidel Castro or
    Hugo Chavez, masquerading as obama and mccain. Either way, we will end up with Communist rule. How soon
    it is completed, depends on which dictator gets elected. As they say, “it is all over, but the shouting”.

    Comment by jammer — February 22, 2008 @ 3:13 pm
  53. Brad,

    What makes one think that laws are going to stop a determined person of ample means from getting a hold of anything they want?

    And, of course, there’s always the incorrect assumption by gun-control enthusiasts that criminals would actually obey the laws…which they wouldn’t, since disregard for the law is the key part of the job description. All gun/weapons control laws usually end up doing is disarming the victims.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 22, 2008 @ 3:23 pm
  54. “God, I hate that stupid argument…it’s like people for gun control think that the suburbs are filled with multi-billionaire psychopaths ”

    Before I elaborate, I would like to appeal for a less hostile response. To regard someone’s logic as “stupid” does little for a meaningful exchange not to mention, is rude. If my assertion was in fact so illogical, then it would likely be obvious to all who post on this great site anyway, and no response would really be needed, but rather ignored.

    The fact that the two responses to my post came with such contempt is probably not due to my stupidity or lack of logic, but rather that the issue is an important one, and creates a rift when differences arise. With that, I would like to refine my point.

    Using “nuke” as an example as an arm that should be banned or regulated likely eclipsed my main point, which UCrawford still recognized when it was reiterated to “real weapons”. That is a good point, and for the sake of argument, let us keep it realistic (although, I would like to note that nuclear equivalent types of technology may in the future be realistically included in the argument considering my own little experience with graduate students working with nuclear-powered systems).

    And to further refine the argument, Brad’s assertion of North Korea is outside my argument, for that is another government and quite different from citizenry law (although global politics is slowly emerging towards it). And although U.K. gun laws have not taken guns off the streets, it misses the whole issue of whether it should still be a policy and the law by which a nation should strive to uphold. It may not be a fallacy of principle or law, but one of implementation.

    It seems as though I will not be able to even rattle, just a little, UCrawford’s belief that citizens should be able to own and possess any type of weapon, as was so clearly stated. Yet, the rationale seems to be justified only on current-day logistics, and not future logistics as well as the perhaps the most important, basic principle. Just because most do not have the means today to obtain high-grade weapons, or the people that do typically wouldn’t do so, or even further that most wouldn’t even know how to operate it (all of which I further disagree with) is based on a level of assumption on current conditions.

    If the 2nd amendment is to stand the test of time, it must be interpreted and circumscribed to anticipate the future and be resilient. In fifty years, considering the pace of technology and globalization, it could very well do so. Then, what is your argument to hang on when those logistics no longer hold. That is the essence, I think, of my point; although unrealistic or rare today, high-grade weaponry must be regulated to some degree.

    Getting back to original talking point of Obama’s “doublespeak”, the post indicated that he believed that, “local governments should be able to enact any gun control laws they consider necessary to end gun violence”. Now, not only does he maintain local and state governments can differently interpret the law (which is a considerably important sidebar), he also clarified his position to gun violence. While the laws eventually affect gun laws and ownership, he is not targeting the 2nd amendment directly, but rather, gun violence, which in turn refers back to the 2nd amendment, quite a distinction I believe.

    Well, that is quite enough I think. Anyone who got through it has patience! I think my point has been made quite clear.
    would

    Comment by Chris Matera — February 22, 2008 @ 5:19 pm
  55. Yet, the rationale seems to be justified only on current-day logistics

    If the 2nd amendment is to stand the test of time, it must be interpreted and circumscribed to anticipate the future and be resilient.

    I won’t speak for UC, but I’m willing to bet we agree on this one.

    My rationale rests on two fundamental points.
    1) There should be few, if any, external decisions about what I can and cannot do.
    2) The Constitution is not a “living document”. It is not to be reinterpreted. If it doesn’t suit the current environment, amend it. Until then, it is to be interpreted in exactly the manner it was intended.

    Comment by Jeff Molby — February 22, 2008 @ 5:34 pm
  56. Chris,

    I apologize if you felt I was calling you stupid…that wasn’t my intention. But the “we don’t want everyone to have nukes” scenario is a stupid argument because it’s an absurd scare tactic with no basis in reality and it frustrates me when people trot that out (you’re not the first).

    Yet, the rationale seems to be justified only on current-day logistics, and not future logistics as well as the perhaps the most important, basic principle.

    I’m arguing it on current logistics because that’s the reality of the world we live in and because it’s impossible to predict the future. Maybe you’re worried that at some point down the road, nuclear weapons will become affordable and easy for everyone to use…and in response to that in the future maybe people will come up with the technology to counter nuclear threats so home ownership of a nuke won’t matter. Who knows? Not you or me.

    I don’t try to tailor my positions on individual rights to take into account future technological advances because it’s something that nobody can predict with any degree of certainty or accuracy so it’s pointless to bring it up in a debate. Of all the weapons that the average citizen could reasonably come into possession of today, I don’t consider any of them to be enough of a threat to infringe upon our rights to self-defense and the ownership of weapons. I support the right for individuals to own even heavy weapons because the 2nd Amendment wasn’t just designed to take into account the average burglar breaking into your house…it was a protection against tyranny by the state, which can sometimes require more firepower than a .38 caliber pistol can offer (a point often lost on gun-control advocates). A well-armed populace is a populace capable of keeping its government honest.

    If the 2nd amendment is to stand the test of time, it must be interpreted and circumscribed to anticipate the future and be resilient. In fifty years, considering the pace of technology and globalization, it could very well do so.

    That’s a bridge to cross when we come to it, not before. Trying to anticipate where technology will eventually lead us is fodder for science fiction authors and trying to restrict and tailor individual rights based on personal predictions of human evolution is a fool’s errand for politicians.

    It seems as though I will not be able to even rattle, just a little, UCrawford’s belief that citizens should be able to own and possess any type of weapon, as was so clearly stated.

    My opinion that we should be able to own whatever weapons we want is not an indication that I think people should not be punished when they violate other peoples’ rights with those weapons. In fact, I’m generally quite unforgiving in regards to violent criminals. I just don’t believe in the ability of preventative regulation to do much of anything except punish the law-abiding.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 22, 2008 @ 5:49 pm
  57. Jeff,

    I won’t speak for UC, but I’m willing to bet we agree on this one.

    You are correct, we’re in complete agreement on those points.

    Comment by UCrawford — February 22, 2008 @ 5:51 pm
  58. “God, I hate that stupid argument…it’s like people for gun control think that the suburbs are filled with multi-billionaire psychopaths ”

    Yes, we Urban folk think that. The planning, the arsenal, and the victims seem to be the result of psychosis in the burbs. In the city it is so much simpler, just flip us the bird and you are dead and so much cheaper too; one gun, one bullet.

    Comment by VRB — February 23, 2008 @ 6:48 am

Comments RSS

Subscribe without commenting

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Powered by: WordPress • Template by: Eric • Banner #1, #3, #4 by Stephen Macklin • Banner #2 by Mark RaynerXML