Watering Down the Purity Test

…because a fine delicacy of a dessert, mixed with sewage, is sewage. Therefore a “diluted” purity test is…?

From two months ago:

Republican leaders are circulating a resolution listing 10 positions Republican candidates should support to demonstrate that they “espouse conservative principles and public policies” that are in opposition to “Obama’s socialist agenda.” According to the resolution, any Republican candidate who broke with the party on three or more of these issues— in votes cast, public statements made or answering a questionnaire — would be penalized by being denied party funds or the party endorsement.

This could have been read as “excluding people” — a charge constantly leveled at those country-club Republicans (while democrats attend ALL the country clubs their dark little hearts desire to attend)…and against which, for some strange reason, the GOP is constantly on the defensive.

Well, when you’re too long on the defensive, eventually you have to make some concessions.

Enter said “diluted purity test.”

The Republican Party steered clear of passing a so-called “purity test” proposed by a handful of conservative members of the Republican National Committee and instead passed a toothless watered-down resolution that “urges” Republican Party leadership to consider a candidate’s record and statements and fidelity to the party platform before providing financial support or an endorsement.
The proposal, initially drafted by Indiana national committeeman James Bopp, was met with strong resistance by state party chairs concerned about such a one-size-fits-all approach. This week, RNC Chairman Michael Steele made clear that he, too, opposed the proposed resolution.
Republicans may have avoided a divisive purity test for their candidates today, but it clearly doesn’t mean that the differences among and between party loyalists have disappeared, no matter how good the political climate is for them right now.

Infighting, ultimatums, horn-locking, one guy telling the other to “shut up.”

This is the wrong direction, in my humble opinion. One of the reasons the democrats are doing so poorly right now, and are so ineffectual in spite of the fact that they run everything, is that they are anti-human and anti-definition. Their platform is to oppose ambition, effort and individual achievement, and they do this by making things vague. Terrorists aren’t terrorists, sovereign states are not sovereign states, Separation of Powers is not Separation of Powers, the ClimateGate Scandal never really happened, spending money is not spending money as long as you’re spending it on “health care”…

The GOP I would wish to support, opposes this by taking a pro-business, pro-definition standpoint. It isn’t afraid to define things. Opposing gay marriage, therefore, emerges from this general principle not out of a desire to tell people they cannot love each other (WTF????), so much as a desire to define what things are. “Marriage is between a man and a woman.” The opposite of this, has devolved into something quite absurd: Marriage can be between a man and a woman, a man and a man, or a woman and a woman. Don’t you dare insinuate from this that we’re supporters of bestiality, or polygamy though, or we’ll accuse you of using a “straw man” attack. Really? Just those three configurations among two people, and you’ll stop there? I’m to assume this? This is the one progressive revolution that will achieve the increment it’s trying to achieve, and then — stop? Do tell. What is so magical about that number…two?

And every single issue we debate is like this. Have the balls to define something — or don’t. Waffle and equivocate and say “Let Me Be Clear” right before you say something grotesquely muddled.

But not all “Republicans” agree with this. On the issue of illegal immigration, for example — many among them are “pro-business,” but anti-defining-things. Which means they want to legitimize cheap, illegal labor by referring to the invaders as “undocumented workers.”

The democrat leadership now is absolutely dedicated to this tactic of not-defining-things. If any among the electorate see something noble about this practice of leaving-things-undefined, they can go support the folks who are “in charge.” But that isn’t what The American People want, or deserve, right now. They deserve to know what they’re getting when they choose to pull a lever or punch a ballot chad next to somebody’s name.

Steele is wrong about this. Or if he isn’t, it’s a good occasion on which one may re-evaluate one’s support of Republicans…which is the one response Steele is supposed to be trying to avoid. It’s his job to avoid that. Being a Republican ought to be all about defining what something is — and then making an informed decision about whether or not you want to support it.

Being a democrat, after all, has come to be about undefining things, and then asking for the support of simpletons while you dish out tired old catchphrases like “Make No Mistake,” in a really soothing voice that sounds kinda like Walter Cronkite’s. And then calling them racists if they don’t agree with you about everything.

In fact, let me borrow yet another “Obama Speech Bingo” snippet: “For Far Too Long.” For far too long, in this lasting melee between the pro-define-things and anti-define-things, we have assumed this unappealing desire of excluding people — from jobs, from benefits, from existence itself — is a core principle within those who are in favor of defining things. For far too long we have thought we can make a pleasing, pleasant society in which “everyone” can participate, by leaving things undefined, and therefore by opposing any desire to define anything. For far too long, we have failed to see this does not work.

And for far too long, we have also turned a blind eye while this acrid, exclusionary attitude has been promoted by those who are opposed to defining things. For far too long, we have failed to see it is they who are exclusionary. That’s the way it goes. You don’t want to define something, someone else does, you have to jump all over them like a starved jackal. Look, they just did it again. Someone came up with a list of core principles, and this was some kind of a huge problem that had to be attacked. Now, why was that? From whence arose the necessity?

We could ask the anti-define-people why that was so important. But I have a feeling they won’t answer. Or if they do, they won’t be very specific about it.

Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes.

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