Sunday, February 14, 2010

Shit. Shinola. Notice Any Difference?

Something I noticed in The Detroit News over the weekend:

An unenthralled Steve Chapman decides that, "if (Palin's) speech made anything clear, it's that the shallow, ill-informed, truth-twisting demagogue seen in the 2008 presidential campaign is all she is and all she wants to be.

"When it comes to economic affairs," the Chicago Tribune columnist writes, "the tea partiers agree that -- as Palin put it -- 'the government that governs least, governs best.' When it comes to war and national security, however, her audience apparently thinks there is no such thing as too much government."
(“Palin's quips keep pundits polarized”).
I believe actually it was Thoreau who said something about “that government is best which governs least,” though it’s also attributed to Thomas Jefferson or Thomas Paine.

But I don’t see where Chapman gets off saying the tea partiers “apparently” think there’s no such thing as too much government in any area.

I’ve never heard Sarah Palin, (or her hero, Ronlad Reagan), calling for an unlimited increase in war and national security-related government. Just because she supports the military, doesn’t mean she believes there should be an unlimited increase in defense-related government. When has she ever said that? And just because she believes that, when we’re at war, the government should conduct that war like a war and not a like a 911 call, isn’t the same as saying that, when it comes to national security, there can’t be too much government.

Besides, when it comes to the touchstone of Palin’s speech, which is adherence to the Constitution, war and national security are prominently enumerated responsibilities for the national government. “Economic affairs,” strictly speaking, are not.

Like most liberals, Chapman merely resents funds going to national security that, (apparently), he would rather see diverted to social programs and growing the government. Scoffing as he does at Palin’s “governs least” ideal may be his way of saying, implicitly, that he thinks government governs best where it govern most, a presumption he shares with the White House and the majority of Congress.

Now Chapman, after calling Palin “a shallow, ill-informed, truth-twisting demagogue,” thinks he spies in her speech an obvious contradiction, which naturally he intends to exploit. But there is no contradiction. National security and government blundering around with “economic affairs” are two completely different things. This is why it’s perfectly legitimate to support a good, strong defense, while at the same time calling for limited government.

By the way, it doesn't show up in The Jerk clip, but a moment later Steve Martin proves what he's learned by promptly walking oblivious right through the pile of shit.

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