Stupendous Hillary and Howard Thought Experiment

Peggy Noonan gives us a sense of just how badly the last Democrat zingers are probably playing in public right now with this word picture:

Close your eyes and imagine this.

President Bush is introduced at a great gathering in Topeka, Kan. It is the evening of June 9, 2005. Ruffles and flourishes, “Hail to the Chief,” hearty applause from a packed ballroom. Mr. Bush walks to the podium and delivers the following address.

Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. I want to speak this evening about how I see the political landscape. Let me jump right in. The struggle between the Republican Party and the Democratic Party is a struggle between good and evil–and we’re the good. I hate Democrats. Let’s face it, they have never made an honest living in their lives. Who are they, really, but people who are intent on abusing power, destroying the United States Senate and undermining our Constitution? They have no shame.

But why would they? They have never been acquainted with the truth. You ever been to a Democratic fundraiser? They all look the same. They all behave the same. They have a dictatorship, and suffer from zeal so extreme they think they have a direct line to heaven. But what would you expect when you have a far left extremist base? We cannot afford more of their leadership. I call on you to help me defeat them!”

Noonan created this imaginary speech by using statements from Howard Dean and Hillary Clinton about the Republican party. It helps us understand why Howard will never be president and Hillary probably won’t either.

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28 thoughts on “Stupendous Hillary and Howard Thought Experiment

  1. Please, provide the proper context. I’m having a real hard time figuring out these remarks can be softened or re-configured to be more palatable.

  2. Read the speeches in which the quotations are made. Clinton and Dean provided the proper context when they made the comments.

  3. To put it another way:

    “Luke […] I […] am […] your […] father”
    –The Bible (NIV)

  4. Anonymous 1 complains about the quotes being out of context but refuses to make the effort to prove his or her point. Until then, the point is worthless. The quotes sound like the Howard Dean and Hillary Clinton we all know and love.

    Here are Dean’s comments: http://www.sfgate.com/g/av/movies/2005/06/07/deantalk01.mov.

    Certainly the comments, in context, make it clear that Dean is heavily into ethnic/religious interest group politics. It is notable that the rest of the party’s leaders are running away from him.

    The creation of a “Star Wars” quote from the Bible is nothing like what Hunter Baker did. Dean did use the words “White Christian party” to refer to the Republicans, and did so with obvious derogatory intent, the very intent that has been ascribed to him.

    As Hunter Baker suspected, the greater context does not somehow make Dean’s most heated remarks sound decent and sensible. No one claims that every word he says is utterly insane, only that he often sounds like a kook.

  5. Your sarcasm detector must be off.

    Earth to other anonymous: There’s nothing atheistic or anti-Christian about the Democratic party, despite what AM talk radio tells you!

  6. Sorry, anonymous #1, but I’ve seen some excellent poll data that suggests the “God gap” between the two parties is widening. The Democratic Party is becoming increasingly irreligious and it will catch up with the black vote in the near future.

  7. No, Anonymous 1, your sarcasm detector is off. I was being sarcastic too.

    Hunter Baker is right: the Democrat Party, in general, doesn’t like Christians who actually believe in Christianity. Nobody claims that all Democrats are atheists and Christian-haters, but it’s perfectly ludicrous to deny that the party leadership and some very large interest groups within the Democrat Party are reflexively hostile to Christianity. Some prominent Dems talk the talk, sometimes, but their party are the ones supporting judges who want to take the Ten Commandments off of courthouse lawns, want to impose gay marriage on states and communities that don’t vote for it, and say that city seals with the word “God” on them must be changed, and claim that public high school valedictorians should not be able to say that their belief in God helped them succeed academically. And they’re the ones who constantly make snide comments about the power evangelical Christians wield in the Republican Party—and then make snide comments about how the Republicans use gullible evangelicals for their votes but don’t do anything for them), and so on and on and on.

    For Pete’s sake, at least admit the obvious. You don’t have to listen to talk shows to see this, just read the newspapers once in a while. It’s all there.

  8. HB, can you clarify what you mean by “irreligious”?

    Anonymous 2, You’re equating a belief in the separation of church and state with not believing in Christianity. Until you explain why the first of those philosophies implies the second, your examples are meaningless; there is nothing inherently anti-Christian about any of them.

  9. Dean’s original remarks: “…not very friendly to different kinds of people. They’re a pretty monolithic party. They pretty much–they all behave the same and they all look the same, and they all–you know, it’s pretty much a white, Christian party. And the Democrats here adopt everybody you can think of in our party.”

    It’s a pretty obviously unoffensive statement. He’s saying that the Republicans are all predominantly of one racial and religious perspective, while the Democrats are more diverse. Well, considering that the Democrats have more allegiance in urban and coastal settings, both of which are more diverse in terms of culture and religion, it’s a pretty unassailable truth.

  10. Whenever you single out a particular religious or ethnic group and then connect them to a political party you regularly assail, we have the elements of hate speech. At least that’s what we learned from the left. Imagine if one talked about the monolithic Jewish party or black party or Muslim party. Not good medicine there, chief.

    On the matter of irreligiosity, I simply mean things like lack of church attendance, religious affiliation, and belief in transcendent moral values based on the existence of a creator.

  11. So… statements of fact are hate speech if you find them uncomfortable?

    That’s nonsense. Or, to put your logic in another way, if I disagree with, say, Andrew Sullivan on ideological grounds, I am guilty of hate speech if I ask him why a homosexual would be so ravingly insane as to support a party that encourages active discrimination of his sexual cohort?

  12. We’ll take careful note of that and make sure you provide active support of the next conservative to make a questionable socio-religious statement.

  13. What I’m trying to say, great objector to the non-sequitur that wasn’t, is that Dean’s remarks are not really different from any other that characterize a people group in a negative fashion. Republicans are all white Christians. He’s on record as saying he hates Republicans. I think it’s a clear call to say he hates white Christians.

  14. …who are Republicans, is what you needed to add there, oh member of the monochrome party. I haven’t heard him asking the white Christian Democrats to leave.

    It’s only a logical leap to make if one is actively looking for something to make them feel persecuted.

  15. “Sorry, anonymous #1, but I’ve seen some excellent poll data that suggests the “God gap” between the two parties is widening. The Democratic Party is becoming increasingly irreligious and it will catch up with the black vote in the near future.”

    Come on hunter, you just had a post on how people are dropping out of liberal churches. Doesn’t that kind of explain the “god gap”? It’s not a “God gap” but a “church gap” as you even admit when you explain your term. Since church=/=god I think you’re hard pressed to show that it means the left is irreligious.

    Finally saying that Bush wouldn’t make those kind of comments is ludicrous after he’s repeatedly claimed anyone disagreeing with him is a terrorist or with the terrorists.

  16. Tlaloc, you never listen! Hunter Baker has repeatedly said that by “liberal” he means “theologically liberal” when referring to churches, not politically liberal. If *political* liberals are not going to church, that is not a function of a decline of *theologically* conservative churches, unless you mean to say that theological and politcal stances go together, which seems to be exactly the conclusion you are trying to avoid, as it would confirm Hunter Baker’s belief that “The Democratic Party is becoming increasingly irreligious and it will catch up with the black vote in the near future.”

  17. “Tlaloc, you never listen! Hunter Baker has repeatedly said that by “liberal” he means “theologically liberal” when referring to churches, not politically liberal.”

    Actually I believe he only said that once.

    “If *political* liberals are not going to church, that is not a function of a decline of *theologically* conservative churches, unless you mean to say that theological and politcal stances go together,”

    Don’t you think liberal political beliefs and liberal religious beliefs tend to correlate? I certainly do.

    “which seems to be exactly the conclusion you are trying to avoid, as it would confirm Hunter Baker’s belief that “The Democratic Party is becoming increasingly irreligious and it will catch up with the black vote in the near future.”

    No it doesn’t support his position since the democratic party wouldn’t be more irreligious, just less likely to confine their religion to a church. Don’t make the same mistake of confounding the building or the organization with the faith. That was my point and it undermines Hunter’s contention completely.

  18. To reject organized religion is to be irreligious. One can be spiritual, yes, and reject organized religion, but one cannot be religious and reject religion. Hunter Baker remains correct on this.

  19. Sure it makes sense. To make it perfectly clear for you, I’ll shorten it a little: “one cannot be religious and reject religion. Hunter Baker remains correct on this.”

  20. “To reject organized religion is to be irreligious. One can be spiritual, yes, and reject organized religion, but one cannot be religious and reject religion. Hunter Baker remains correct on this.”

    I disagree with you. In this case irreligious is clearly being used to mean not-spiritual (otherwise the term “god gap” makes no sense). One can indeed be religious and reject ORGANIZED religion. I would personally call such a person “spiritual” and reserve the term “religious” to mean organized religions but that’s personal preference.

  21. I certainly agree that it makes the most sense to reserve the term “religious” to refer to adherence to organized religion of some sort or other.

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