Wednesday, August 02, 2006
A commenter asked me to post about the "Rightroots" challenge, which seems to be an attempt to raise money for Republicans via blogs. Well, we bloggers have to feed the beast, so why not?
The Rightroots exercise -- Mary Katherine Ham calls it a "movement," which strikes me as an abuse of the term -- has a few nomenclature issues that require examination. The name is horrendously derivative of "netroots," the term used by Democratic activist bloggers as a play on either "grassroots" or "gray roots," I'm not sure which. And there is really nothing "roots" about it. The idea is cooked up by a GOP PAC. Anyway, I think the right needs to come up with its own term, one the left would never copy. I'd call it "Capitol Gains."
I should also say that however right wing I may be, I am not particularly partisan. I tend to agree with Democrats almost as often as I agree with Republicans. The only difference is that I tend to agree with Democrats about subjects that I barely care about (abortion, gay marriage and the right of everybody to burn the American flag) and with Republicans about things I care about intensely (killing jihadis and their sympathizers without mercy, keeping taxes low, tort reform, and spending as large a portion of the federal budget on defense as is conceivably worthwhile). So I usually vote for Republicans.
That having been said, just today I got a fundraising solicitation in the mail from a Democratic candidate for Congress, one Carol Gay, who is running in New Jersey's 4th District. It contained this chilling sentence:
A victory for the Democrats in November will also mean that Nancy Pelosi will be Speaker of the House instead of Dennis Hastert.
Give generously. If you're not too demoralized.
MORE: A better reason to give.
CORRECTION: Mary Katherine Ham notes in the comments to this post that the idea for Rightroots was cooked up by John Hawkins, so it is rootier than I realized. Nevertheless, I still would have gone with "Capitol Gains." If you're going to be Republican, be proud! Don't be the roots of anything.
I don't want get too far off topic, but I'm surprised you "intensely" support the Republican agenda on tort reform. Though I'm an attorney (not a trial attorney), that's not why I oppose tort reform -- though I think damage caps are a way of penalizing lawyers for doing their jobs well. The problem I have with Republican efforts to limit medical malpractice damage awards is that they disproportionately hurt those people who suffer the most severe injuries. Those who suffer the severest injuries tend to receive the biggest jury awards, so damage caps hurt them the most. Additionally, I have little sympathy for the negligent doctors and insurance companies who charge exhorbitant premiums because they can't manage the cyclical ups and downs of the insuance business that have created a healthcare crisis in this county. That's my perspective. What makes you come out the other way on this issue?
Actually, MrSurly, I think damages caps are pretty clumsy myself (although they have the benefit of discouraging plaintiffs lawyers from wanting to take the case to trial). I think the Republicans have not handled the issue well. But at least their first impulse is not to create a private cause of action for every hangnail and indignity.
"The only difference is that I tend to agree with Democrats about subjects that I barely care about (abortion, gay marriage and the right of everybody to burn the American flag)"
Funny that. Those are among the issues that compel me to vote the straight Dem ticket in most cases.
I wonder how many people would vote for a party that was not beholden to the religious right on social issues, and was strong on defence. I know I would - and I suspect many others would too. The threat from the Islamic fascists is real, but to me voting Republican will transform this country into something not worth fighting for in the first place.
Oh well - here's to that wonderful two-party system we have, that compels me to make choices like this.
Dang, I love "Capitol Gains"...Nice one! I wish I had thought of it. But I wanted to add that the idea was cooked up by John Hawkins, who then found a PAC that was in the process of cooking up tools by which to make the idea happen, so we partnered. Just a distinction. Thanks for the link and the comments.
I'm telling you folks, it's time for the rise of a new third party to upset the system. Some major figures should pull an Ariel Sharon and declare a new party, moderate on social issues and hawkish on defense.