Monday, October 20, 2008

Buckley Bows Out of National Review.

So, Christopher Buckley is "briskly" allowed to leave The National Review - a paper founded by his own father - for the crime of stating that he thinks Barack Obama should be the next president of the United States.

The article wasn't even published in The National Review but, rather, in The Daily Beast, but the fact that he had endorsed Obama at all led to what he describes as "a tsunami" of hate mail at the Review which forced him to offer his resignation which Rich Lowry instantly accepted.

As for the mail flooding into National Review Online—that’s been running about, oh, 700-to-1 against. In fact, the only thing the Right can’t quite decide is whether I should be boiled in oil or just put up against the wall and shot. Lethal injection would be too painless.
In today's Daily Beast, Buckley reminds us of how much the present Conservative movement have been taken over by fanatics.
My father in his day endorsed a number of liberal Democrats for high office, including Allard K. Lowenstein and Joe Lieberman. One of his closest friends on earth was John Kenneth Galbraith.


My point, simply, is that William F. Buckley held to rigorous standards, and if those were met by members of the other side rather than by his own camp, he said as much.
But the paragraph which really hit home was this one:
While I regret this development, I am not in mourning, for I no longer have any clear idea what, exactly, the modern conservative movement stands for. Eight years of “conservative” government has brought us a doubled national debt, ruinous expansion of entitlement programs, bridges to nowhere, poster boy Jack Abramoff and an ill-premised, ill-waged war conducted by politicians of breathtaking arrogance. As a sideshow, it brought us a truly obscene attempt at federal intervention in the Terry Schiavo case.

So, to paraphrase a real conservative, Ronald Reagan: I haven’t left the Republican Party. It left me.
This is why I genuinely think we are witnessing the death of the Republican Party in it's present form. This is why Colin Powell, The Washington Post and a host of conservatives are endorsing Obama over McCain.

The rallies of both McCain and Palin are becoming shameful hate fests, where totally ignorant people spew lies which they must surely, by this point in an electoral cycle, have been disabused of?

I must admit that I find it very hard to read Michelle Malkin as the level of hatred and vitriol which fuels her simply repulses me. However, I am coming to the reluctant conclusion that she, and others like her like Ann Coulter, really are the face of the current Republican Party.

The foul crazy rants - "terrorist", "Arab", "Muslim" "Kill him!" - coming from the McCain/Palin crowds are shameful; as much for their profound ignorance as for their vitriol.

That there can be people truly insane enough to believe that a Muslim terrorist could possibly run for the presidency of the United States is simply breathtaking.

Ignorance and stupidity on that scale are rarely witnessed publicly. And yet this is now McCain's base. These are his supporters. A group of people who are so deluded that they think their best interests could be served by their nation one day, possibly, being led by Sarah Palin.

It simply doesn't bear thinking about.

And it's no wonder that, with the lunatics finally taking over the asylum, that Powell, Christopher Buckley, The Washington Post, The San Joaquin Record, The Chicago Tribune and a host of other conservatives should be breaking rank with a party which has, as Buckley states, stopped standing for anything which anyone can articulate other than an irrational hatred of "that one".

McCain and Palin are the perfect representatives of a party which has ceased to stand for anything at all. Their campaign has no overarching theme and exists purely to attack Obama and spread lies and misinformation.

It's scandalous. And it's no surprise that so many honourable conservatives simply can't bear to be associated with it.

Click title for Buckley's article.

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