…same as the old Republican Party?
Howard Fineman reports from the Southern Republican Leadership Conference – is that Republicans in the South, Republicans of the South, or Southern Republicanism? – that attendees ain’t too keen on the Start Treaty just signed in Prague.
As a first pass, I asked people in the ballroom here about the new START treaty and Obama’s new stance on non-first-use of nuclear weapons. To say they were deeply skeptical is an understatement. Men and women alike, young and old alike, said Obama was; naive, weakening America, treasonous, and out to rule the world.
This is no surprise – the reaction of the, ah, Republican Leadership has been skeptical at best, derogatory and fear mongering at worst. Rudy Giuliani leads the pack. According to the NRO online, Giuliani, in an interview, said
A nuclear-free world has been a 60-year dream of the Left, just like socialized health-care. This new policy, like Obama’s government-run health program, is a big step in that direction.
President Obama thinks we can all hold hands, sing songs, and have peace symbols,” Giuliani says. “North Korea and Iran are not singing along with the president. Knowing that, it just doesn’t make sense why we would reduce our nuclear arms when we face these threats.
Recall that Iran does not yet have a single nuclear warhead. Best estimates are that North Korea may have around three that might not successfully detonate and that it can plunk into the Pacific. Recall that the new treaty leaves the United States with 1550 warheads.
Recall the renewed Afghan War and the startlingly aggressive and successful drone campaign being waged by this president who “thinks we can all hold hands, sing songs, and have peace symbols.” Recall what it means when politicians treat people like fools by making such statements.
We live in a troubled world, and the United States and China, as two great nations, share a special responsibility to help reduce the risks of war. We both agree that there can be only one sane policy to preserve our precious civilization in this modern age: A nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. And no matter how great the obstacles may seem, we must never stop our efforts to reduce the weapons of war. We must never stop at all until we see the day when nuclear arms have been banished from the face of this Earth.
Or read the book Ronald Reagan and His Quest to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.
…same as the old Democratic Party (circa 1861)?
Governor Bob McDonnell of Virginia, at the behest of Brag Bowling, the commander of the Virginia division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, this week declared April Confederate History Month, and did so without any reference to slavery. This is the latest rising star of the Republican Party, chosen by the party to respond to the president’s State of the Union in January. Bragg, himself, in an appearance on CNN, denied that slavery was the principal issue over which the war was fought and referred to the Union Army in Virginia as an invading army.
After much condemnation, McDonnell apologized for the omission of slavery from the proclamation (oh, yeah, slavery), but, in fact, had earlier justified the omission
there were any number of aspects to that conflict between the states. Obviously, it involved slavery. It involved other issues. But I focused on the ones I thought were most significant for Virginia.
The updated proclamation still refers to the Civil War as “a four year war between the states for independence” rather than secession.
The Sons of Confederate Veterans declares on its home page and elsewhere
The citizen-soldiers who fought for the Confederacy personified the best qualities of America. The preservation of liberty and freedom was the motivating factor in the South’s decision to fight the Second American Revolution….
Today, the Sons of Confederate Veterans is preserving the history and legacy of these heroes, so future generations can understand the motives that animated the Southern Cause.
The “cause” of the SCV is “heritage defense” (against whom and what, one might ask), and it has a Heritage Defense Committee and Chief, who states
It is unfortunate that our Heritage is so often under attack. We share a proud SOUTHERN HISTORY and only wish to honor and commemorate it. If intolerant individuals or organizations try to prevent you from your RIGHT to do so, we stand willing and ready to assist you.
And the “motives that animated the Southern Cause”? Once again, not slavery, and as a history link supporting as much, the SCV offers The Confederate Catechism by Lyon Gardiner Taylor, fourth son of President Zachary Taylor, who was devoted to proving Abraham Lincoln a scoundrel.
The Southerners took the negro as a barbarian and cannibal, civilized him, supported him, clothed him, and turned him out a better Christian than Abraham Lincoln, who was a free thinker, if not an atheist.
This is an organization that has the ear and the sympathy of the Governor of Virginia, the man the Republican Party chose to be its national face this past January.
But of the growing reactionary nature of the Republican Party, more another day.