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Back when Sister Babe was pregnant with Little Bob, we had a conversation about how our lives would be changing once we became parents. One concern she raised was that I would no longer be able to go to the (sadly, now closed) Rhino Bar on Sunday afternoons in the fall to drink too much beer and watch Philadelphia Eagles football with the local crazies, and that I might come to resent her and our child for taking the ability to do that from my life. This was the pregnancy talking, as Sister Babe has too good a head on her shoulders to have married and had a baby with someone who didn’t share her views on parenting. I tried explaining to her that my spending Sunday afternoons at the bar would be a great way to bond with our son. By the time football season would be rolling around the lad would be a toddler. And if I walked through the door staggering, doing a face plant and chuckling like an idiot before and myself before peeing myself & passing out, it would be a great way to show our son that I’m trying to relate to him!
Just kidding, although I did present that argument at a later date with no success. My actual response to her was simple, but got the point across. I told her that, “I have to give up things in my life now because of a long series of choices I made that got me here. I’m not going to get angry at other people over the consequences of my decisions – I’m a conservative!” We both got a good chuckle out of that remark, but I wasn’t kidding about the substance of it.
In the first part of this series I pointed out numerous examples of how the Radical Left furiously rejects math in any discussion, but left unanswered is the question of “Why?” Back in late 2014 Jim Geraghty gave a roundup of a number of issues where the Federal Government has failed. Look for the common thread among them:
What’s with the Centers for Disease Control? They keep telling you “we’re going to stop Ebola in its tracks here” and then there are new cases. The NIH Director seems to think he’s reassuring us by telling us “the system worked” as we learn about new infections. Then there’s that enterovirus 68 floating around, killing kids. Terrifying, heartbreaking. Hey, guys, maybe a little less time studying gun control and a little more time spent on, you know, disease control? That’s your job.
What’s going on with everybody who’s supposed to be protecting us? First Obama says “We don’t have a strategy yet” — why not? Don’t we spend billions, even trillions, on national-security agencies, intelligence agencies, and a Department of Defense? Isn’t somebody in those vast, expensive organizations supposed to come up with a strategy? Then he said “they underestimated what had been taking place in Syria” — isn’t that their job? Wasn’t anybody watching?
Now they’re saying the airstrikes over in Iraq and Syria aren’t doing enough, and the Islamic State is knocking on the door of Baghdad. Sunday morning, National Security Adviser Susan Rice said we’re not reassessing our strategy. Well, shouldn’t somebody? Just in case? Doesn’t anybody over there believe in having a Plan B? Isn’t that the job of a national-security adviser?
How the hell did the top guys at the Department of Veterans Affairs not know about the waitlists and that veterans were dying, waiting for care? That’s their job.
How the heck did the federal government AND so many state governments manage to spend so much money and not build insurance-exchange web sites that worked? That was their job.
The president keeps insisting that test scores are up and that college attendance is up, when it’s actually been the opposite. Obviously, the public schools aren’t good enough for his kids. He promised the moon when it came to improving schools back in 2008. Wasn’t that his job?
In your life, failure is not an option. If you don’t pick up the kids from school, they’re stuck there. If you don’t go shop for groceries, the kids don’t eat. All around you, every day, you see things that have to get done, and you do them. You don’t tell the kids, ‘well, our intentions were good. We tried. We had some glitches.” You don’t get to blame your predecessor or the opposition party. You don’t get to tell them, or your spouse, or your boss, that the situation is the same, as normal, and that they’re “just noticing now because of social media.”
Where is this “get it done” attitude in Washington? Every time you turn around, it’s some new excuse. Americans do not accept this kind of incompetence and accountability in their personal and professional lives. Why should they accept it from Washington?
Do you notice what’s missing from these failures? There isn’t any quantifiable objective. Granted, with warfare quantifying objectives is tougher, although a simple one that could be used would be to not let ISIS gain any additional ground and to destroy every last one of their followers that we can find.
But why would the Radical Left be so violently opposed to quantifying any of their objectives? The reason is simple – when you quantify an objective, results become measurable. When results can be measured, there is an accountability for those results. And with accountability comes accepting responsibility, which is the heart of the issue. Leftists cringe at the notion of personal responsibility the same way that Vampires cringe at the sight of a crucifix (which leftists do as well, ironically enough). The two words you will never, under any circumstances, hear from a leftist is “I’m responsible.” But why?
Leftists do not care about the actual results of any policy/politician/ballot measure that they support. There is one metric and one metric only that is universally applied by every leftist that pre-determines whether or not anything that they support is a good idea or not, and it is the question, “Does supporting this idea make me feel good about myself?” If the answer is “yes”, then facts or reality be damned – it is a good idea and there is absolutely nothing you can do to convince them otherwise. Heck, they seem to wear their thought process’ impervoiusness to reason like a badge of honor! I’m sure anyone reading this has seen the mental contortions that they twist through to justify their beliefs:
The broken promises of “If you like your plan you can keep your plan, if you like your doctor you can keep your doctor, and your rates will not go up” are in no way an indication that President Obama was either lying or lacks even the most basic grasp of reality, but rather the fault of those evil big businesses for not bending reality to match the president’s claims.
Rise of ISIS? Bush’s fault, of course for invading Iraq. Never mind that he’s been out of office for seven years and in no way had any influence over Obama’s inability to secure something as simple as a Status of Forces agreement to keep stable a country that had become safer than most Democrat-run cities.
Today’s anger in politics? It’s the fault of those racist haters who oppose Obama, of course. Never mind that the last seven years of “Divide and Hate” that have been Obama’s hallmark, or the fact that if a white Republican president named Rush Palin produced the same results as Obama’s policies we’d oppose him too.
There are many more examples I can cite, but if you’re reading this you’re either nodding your head in agreement or you’ve already rationalized some excuses for the failures of the Radical Left in each of those bullet points. To provide a very concrete, recent example look at what recently happened with the water supply in Flint, MI. Even though this terrible incident offers a long string of neglect and outright incompetence from a long string of leftists, the only one being the adult in the room and claiming any responsibility is the Republican governor, who got dragged into the problem really late in the game. And this is only because so many members of Radical Leftist groups couldn’t accept responsibility and face the problem head on. The sad part is that even though the blame couldn’t be more obvious the notion of accepting responsibility doesn’t even for a moment enter the minds of the leftists. Not that they won’t hesitate to try to take credit for accomplishments of others, as Hillary tried to do in Flint once an adult took charge.
And that brings me to the final point of this installment, which is another huge advantage that the left holds – because they are incapable of accepting responsibility they are equally incapable of feeling any guilt over the consequences of their actions. You can shame a conservative, but because leftist concerns are so self-centered they are impervious to the use of an argument that might make a normal person feel guilt over their positions. This will bring us to the next part where I explain the power of this advantage in…
Cross posted from Brother Bob’s Blog