Look Out For the Boogie Man!
One constituency that hasn’t quite settled on a candidate is the leadership of the Religious Right.
James Dobson, who has been frequently criticized here in the past, is standing up and saying “No” to Giuliani and Thompson. It is interesting that he was blowing kisses to Newt Gingrich, but we’ll set that aside for another day. My concern with Dobson is that he has criticized Thompson, McCain, and Giuliani because he’ll wind up backing Mitt Romney. I hope that I’m being too cynical.
In any case, Dobson was criticized by his former underling, the diminutive neo-con Gary Bauer. Bauer said, “So I hope that we can, as a movement, be very wise about this, and not savage candidates that we may very well have to support in 2008 if they’re running against Hillary Clinton.”
Ah nothing like the specter of a Clinton ascending the thrown to send Bauer into spasms. This is what John Lofton has rightly called “Boogie Man Politics.”
Meanwhile, the omnipresent Dr. Richard Land also criticized Dobson’s remarks as “harsh.” Land went on to compare Thompson to Saint Ronald, a sure sign of the direction he is leading.
I also noticed yesterday this essay by Land where he discourses on the “complexity” of ethical considerations when considering how to vote. Here is an excerpt:
But consider a much more complicated scenario in which voters with a particular worldview are facing a decision about which candidate to support in a field where there is Candidate Baker, with whom the voters have 100 percent agreement on moral issues; Candidate Jones, with whom the voters have 80 percent agreement on moral issues; and Candidate Smith, with whom the voters have 10 percent agreement on moral issues.
This slate of candidates does not provide a clear choice between two
starkly contrasting candidates. Instead, the voters are faced with a more complex choice among several candidates. In fact, the candidate the voter has the most in common with (Candidate Baker), may be the weakest candidate across all voting blocs.
Thus, you have a scenario in which the voters are faced with supporting a candidate they agree with 100 percent of the time while fully recognizing the fact that in supporting Candidate Baker, they will help ensure the success of another candidate they agree with on moral issues only 10 percent of the time (Candidate Smith), and the defeat of a candidate they agree with 80 percent of the time (Candidate Jones), as well as their "first choice" (Candidate Baker).
However, if they choose to vote prudentially for Candidate Jones (80
percent agreement), there is a very good chance that their support might ensure the defeat of Candidate Smith (10 percent agreement) and the victory of Candidate Jones (80 percent agreement).
If they know this and still vote for Candidate Baker, do they become
morally responsible, at least in part, for Candidate Smith's win? Also, in the general election that follows, voters would be faced with the grim choice of not voting, voting for Candidate Smith (10% agreement), or voting for a candidate 100 percent opposed to their values.
In such a hypothetical scenario, if they choose to vote for candidate Jones in the primary, are they choosing the lesser evil -- or the lesser good?
Is it more moral to choose prudentially to vote for the candidate who
agrees with them 80 percent of the time on moral issues (Candidate Jones), knowing their support will ensure that candidate's victory, thus giving the nation a choice between someone they agree with 80 percent of the time and a person they don't agree with at all?
OK, so I’m guessing that in our little allegory that candidate Baker is someone like Brownback or the Huckster, candidate Jones is Fred Thompson, and candidate Smith is Rudy. There is also a Boogie Man (Hillary) hiding out over the next ridge (November, 2008) who we find no agreement with on any “values” issues.
What Land is arguing is the old canard that we have to choose the lesser of two evils even in primary elections, not merely in a general election campaign featuring Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum.
So what has the “lesser of two evils” politics practiced by religious conservatives wrought? Well, it has joined them at the hip with the Republican Party. How has that marriage fared?
Since 1968, GOP presidents have nominated 12 of 14 Supreme Court justices and Republican appointees now control 75% of federal appellate jurisdictions, too. Since 1968 abortion and sodomy laws have been struck down, affirmative action programs have expanded and the courts have blessed the theft of private property via eminent domain, to name just a few of the more egregious dictates of our “justice system.”
After controlling the White House for 20 of 28 years, when Bush II leaves office we will have the largest, most intrusive, debt-ridden, fiscally irresponsible, un-Constitutional government in history.
You want more of this? Then follow Dr. Land into the voting booth and pull a lever for Fred Thompson. Had enough? Send a check to Ron Paul.