Rules Of Thumb

by John Hawkins | January 16, 2012 2:37 am

Here are few generalities about American politics that I believe to be the case. They’re not always true, but they’re good rules of thumb to keep in mind.

— Don’t ever expect a conservative to get an even break from the mainstream media.

— To the mainstream media and the left, every war is Vietnam.

— You convince conservatives with logic, liberals with emotion, and moderates with a mix of the two.

— A Conservative can’t outspend a liberal on domestic issues, so he shouldn’t bother to try. Conversely, a liberal can’t out-cut a conservative on domestic issues, or outspend him on the military, so he shouldn’t bother to try.

— Conservatives turn on their own much quicker than liberals do and it serves us well because we usually don’t end up dragging our image down in the public eye by defending the indefensible.

— “To understand the workings of American politics, you have to understand this fundamental law: Conservatives think liberals are stupid. Liberals think conservatives are evil.” –: Charles Krathammer[1]

— Conservatives believe in fighting wars to further America’s interests. Liberals believe in fighting wars that DON’T further America’s interests.

— Ironically, I’ve found that people who chide others for “not having an open mind” usually have closed minds themselves.

— You’re not going to take a President down with a scandal because everyone who isn’t a diehard partisan on your side believes you’re exaggerating what’s happening for political gain.

— A lot of scandals, maybe even the overwhelming majority of them, are tempests in teapots that only the politcal junkies understand & care about.

— Even if a problem facing America is serious, it usually takes a crisis to prompt both parties to get together and deal with it.

— “The devotees of the party in power are smug and arrogant. The devotees of the party out of power are insane”. –: Jane’s Law[2]

— Ironically, even though Democrats hold Social Security in much higher esteem than Republicans do, the GOP has been so scarred by Democratic attack ads that it’s actually much more likely that a Democrat will cut Social Security benefits or raise the age requirement than a Republican will.

— One of the biggest problems Republicans have is that after they run and win as a Conservative, they immediately move towards the center & irritate many of the people who voted for them, ostensibly to make it more likely that they’ll be reelected.

— Since Kennedy, even hawkish Democrats in the White House have been incapable of dealing with tough foreign policy issues because of a fear that their base, which is more concerned with limiting American power and impressing Europe than defending America, will abandon them at election time.

— Because of triangulism, each party may have a better chance of getting major items on their agenda passed with a President from the other party in office.

— Democrats secretly support illegal immigration because they look at illegals as new voters. Republicans secretly support illegal immigration because business interests need the cheap labor and because the GOP doesn’t want to offend minority voters. Because of this, neither party looks out for the American people’s interests where illegal immigration is concerned.

— New government programs are easy to get passed because the people they benefit are happy about them and the people they hurt (The American taxpayers) usually won’t notice the effect of a single program or know who to blame if they do. Conversely, it’s very difficult to cut government programs because the people who used them get very unhappy & make a big stink while the taxpayers generally don’t notice the difference. Because of this, government will inevitably continue to grow unless some sort of legal restraint is put on it.

— Tax cuts don’t cause deficits. Spending too much on government programs causes deficits.

— 50% of the American public generally doesn’t pay attention to politics. So if a politician makes a positive or negative impression on them during those rare times when they are paying attention, it’s very difficult to change that initial impression.

— There is no real & honest debate about race going on in America today.

— The American public usually prefers to have a bird in hand than two in the bush.

— Americans are usually lukewarm about tax cuts, but tend to get all fired up if someone tries to raise their taxes.

— People have VERY SHORT memories when it comes to politics. That’s why politicians can get away with telling the exact same lies every election cycle.

— Without an alliance against the Soviet Union to hold us together, the US and Europe will drift farther and farther apart over time.

— Relationships between nations are built on similar interests, not on good will. So don’t base your foreign policy around building up good will or you’ll be sorely disapointed when you find that all of your kind acts meant so little to the nations you did them for.

  1. Charles Krathammer:
  2. Jane’s Law:

Source URL: