Kurt Schlichter Posted: Oct 24, 2019 12:01 AM – for Townhall.com
My cmnt: Be sure to read Kurt’s latest column on Tulsi below this one.
I think I know what the deal is with all the gushing adoration Tulsi Gabbard has somehow managed to wrangle from ordinarily sensible conservatives. Think of a regular guy walking down the hall in high school, and the head cheerleader passes by and says, “Hi.” The dude’s going to think she’s awesome. Of course, just because she is polite doesn’t mean Regular Joe is ever going to take her to the prom.
Tulsi gets Strange New Conservative Respect for several reasons, but the primary one is that she doesn’t seem to hate our guts. She is what an opponent should be – an opponent, not an enemy. Let’s face it – the mainstream Democrat Party hates our guts, and given its malignant druthers it would strip us of our First, Second, and probably Third Amendment rights in order to make sure that we never, ever have a say in our own governance again. Then, with us silenced and disarmed, it would take our money, corrupt our children and generally oppress us in ways that make today’s punitive straw bans look tame. If you don’t believe that a scary number of mainstream lefties want us Normals enslaved or dead, well, you’re either in denial or not on social media.
Make no mistake – Tulsi is not one of us conservatives, though the kind of leftism she embraces (which owes a lot to the socialism of Bernie Sanders) shares some superficial similarities to the populism that has swept the GOP base. In many ways, we share her critique of an inept, corrupt ruling caste eager to send non-elite citizens off to fight their endless, mismanaged wars. We also share a critique of Big Business as a crony capitalist simulacrum of free enterprise, basically a bunch of rich jerks sidling up to the leaders of both parties to repeatedly shaft us regular folks to pump up a few digits on their balance sheets.
That Tulsi will take on the corrupt leaders of her garbage party, like Felonia Milhouse von Pantsuit, is certainly a welcome change from the lockstep stonewalling we have seen from the others – “Why, I see nothing wrong with Toots McHoover Biden peeing hot then getting 50 grand a month from an oligarch, and if you do you’re racist!” When Mee Maw got into the cooking sherry again and started calling her a “Russian asset,” you knew Tulsi was drawing blood from Ole Granny Reset Button. That charge is particularly amusing since Major Gabbard is an Army officer and a veteran of the elite’s dumb wars – another thing the right appreciates about her. But then everyone is a Russian agent these days. We cons get the same insane idiocy, and not just the president. My Twitter conversations on this topic tend to go like this:
“You’re a Russian traitor of treason just like Trump!”
“I was literally an Army officer in the Cold War.”
“You are betraying America and our allies!”
“I served in NATO for years and have a NATO medal.”
“You love Putin!”
“I served with and helped train Ukrainians, who are fighting Putin’s Russia.”
“See! You admit it!”
Gabbard is far more open to Assad than many of us cons like, but her opposition to the Fredocon warmonger model (like the opposition of many woke conservatives) seems to come from a place of genuine concern for the troops she serves and served with. Unlike most of the rest of her rivals, dead American warriors are not an abstraction. Moreover, you get the idea that, alone among the faux Cherokees, naggy mistresses, and militant furries up there on the Democrat debate stage, Tulsi actually likes America, and Americans.
The Gabbard Left and the Trump Right share the conclusion that our elite sucks and that it has forfeited any moral authority to lead our country, but the similarity ends there. She is not conservative and is not traditional. Just because she has doubts about offing babies in the third trimester, as opposed to supporting abortion until high school graduation, does not make her pro-life. She would take your guns, she would take your money, and she would generally make Barack Obama look like William F. Buckley.
Sometimes we forget that Tulsi is a leftist, and that she would screw up health care, open the borders and impose all sorts of climate hoax nonsense. A key difference from us, when you get past the surface similarities, is that she and her ilk have faith in the idea that government can take on more and more responsibilities, despite the fact that it has demonstrated that it cannot handle those responsibilities it already has, which themselves are mostly far beyond what government should be doing in the first place.
There’s another issue, the fox in the room if you will, that we need to address, and it is not an indictment of Tulsi Gabbard. It’s her storied looks. She is pretty, and she does not give off the man-hating vibe of the rest of her competitors (this also goes for the nominal men on the stage). Tulsi certainly plays it up – those yoga-pants workout videos are not just to reassure us about her cardiovascular fitness. But the fact that she is a woman comfortable with being traditionally feminine gives her a leg up on that squad of bitter, spinster librarians she is running against.
Again, this is not a diss against her. She is a serious person with serious ideas who just happens not to be a typically hateful liberal harridan. This is a recognition that good looks can sometimes act on an unconscious level to make her more attractive (in a meta sense) to those who might otherwise reject her based on her politics. In other words, this is a hit on those conservative males (and it’s mostly males) who go gaga over her pretty face and refuse to see that underneath the mask, it’s really Bernice Sanders.
So, don’t fall for Tulsi Gabbard, because just because we agree on a few things does not mean that her quirky brand of New Age socialism is acceptable. But then again, what she represents in terms of presentation is entirely laudable. She is what an American political opponent should be – a person you can discuss issues with without someone ripping out the other’s throat. We should not aspire to a political culture where we hate the folks in the other party – that current reality is immensely destructive and dangerous. Tulsi represents someone who says “Hi” to us in the hallway, and who we can say “Hi” right back to with no expectation of ever taking her to the prom.
If Tulsi Gabbard became Chairperson of the Central Committee of the socialist dictatorship our garbage elite is dying to impose upon us, she at least might not pack all of us deplorables off to the Hillary Fun Camps. That’s something.
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The Conservative Love Affair with Tulsi
Kurt Schlichter Posted: Mar 16, 2022 12:01 AM – for Townhall.com
I like Tulsi Gabbard, in the sense that she’s a Democrat who does not seem to hate my guts and she is an Army light colonel who is not a simpering weasel, like some other prominent lieutenant colonels, who I wouldn’t put in command of a DFAC ice cream machine. And lots of other conservatives like Tulsi too, in large part because she will call out other Democrats. But she is a Democrat, and while I’m happy to have her in the arena providing an example of someone I disagree with engaging in civil and reasoned discourse – in contrast to the likes of the ridiculous de-districted Adam Kinzinger or the flatulent Chi Com booty caller Eric Swalwell – the bottom line is that I do disagree with her. And so do you on most things of importance.
She’s been anti-“assault weapon” while I think every healthy, law-abiding American should own at least one. She likes single payer and believes in the climate scam. She is not one of us even though she is also not our enemy in the sense that she wants to load us on trains for the reeducation camps. It’s just that a Democrat who is not sacrificing children to Baal so that he brings down his fiery wrath upon us conservative heretics is so rare she gets a ton of points for simply not wanting us dead.
I also disagree with her on Ukraine. She is more open to the Russian point of view, and she takes more seriously Russian claims that I do not. I think she’s naive about the danger Putin poses, and about the dangers we face from others looking at our alleged leaders’ incompetence. We have real interests and real enemies, and I think Tulsi is too often more “Aloha” than “Don’t tread on me.” Moreover, she also thinks the bio labs issue is a bigger deal than it probably really is, though our garbage foreign policy establishment’s track record of lies and failure means it is not unreasonable to take its denials, equivocations, and changing stories with a Mt. Everest of salt.
However, she is not “treasonous,” as that invertebrate Mitt Romney put it in an especially pathetic tweet designed to silence anyone not towing his party line. I disagree with Tulsi in that she’s too easy on Putin, but also with that dog-tormenting jerk because he’s too fake-hard. Mitt and his many healthy sons, Tigg, Tugg, Toob, Tweeb, Skipper, Muffo and Ploop, famously never served their country in uniform despite ample opportunity to put their money where their mouths are. I note that Tulsi has, so the idea of this coiffed sissy insisting that a veteran of war’s concern for the lives of our troops – none of whom are Mitt or his kids, but who are you or yours – is “treasonous” for dissenting is disgusting.
I really hate the whole chickenhawk thing. It’s intellectually bankrupt, but it’s also emotionally essential. I ran a glorified armed carwash, and I was no hero like Pete Audie Buttigieg, but I’m not going to be lectured at, nor allow a fellow officer like Tulsi to be lectured at, by this duty-dodging jerk. And he is a jerk. Remember, he hired Ric Grenell on his 2012 campaign, but when some people complained, instead of telling them “I’m standing behind Ric and if that costs me your vote, so be it,” he allowed Grenell to resign. And recently, he backstabbed Senator Mike Lee in the race against that McMuffin guy. So, Mitt can spare me his faux-moral loyalty jive. Yeah, tell me more about loyalty, you schmuck.
Tulsi does not deserve that abuse from a pipsqueak like Mitt, but we need to understand that she is no conservative. That does not mean we should not hear her out, even attempt to convert her. She was a speaker at CPAC and her speech touched on things we share in common and was well-received. We should hear out people who are not exactly where we are; testing and questioning our own ideas forges them into steel, while we can see what happens when you don’t ever escape your bubble by listening to our enemies. They can’t articulate their own views coherently, and certainly can’t articulate ours. How many times have you had one libsplain to you about how “I thought conservatives were supposed to support companies’ rights” and so forth? It you think modern conservatives are more concerned with Twitters “rights” than with making sure a pack of Silicon Valley oligarchs can’t impose a regime-friendly social credit system on all Americans, you need to get out of the Beltway more.
Tulsi agrees with some of the things we do, and it’s fine to work together where we can. But all the talk of a Trump/Tulsi ticket is just crazy talk. She’s a nice person, but she’s wrong on a lot of key points. We don’t hate her for that. We disagree. And because we disagree, let’s respect the fact that she has different views on critical issues enough to not pretend she could just paper them over and become one of us.
Might she change over time? I think she has changed some and perhaps she will change more in the future. Ronald Reagan famously evolved from a New Dealer into the scourge of the welfare state. But she’s not where we are now. And our differences matter. While her stay out of the Ukraine/Russia war position is the right one to the extent it means no US forces being involved, we should provide some (non-MiG) weapons and aid.
Tulsi should be respected not because we agree with much of what she says, but because we don’t and yet she can still act like an adult and engage with us. The “principled” frauds like Mitt who whine about Trump’s mean tweets are the ones who can’t – if you disagree with the official narrative, out comes the flaccid “treason” charge. But don’t mistake a non-enemy for a team member. She’s not a conservative, and that’s okay. She’s not an enemy, and right now that’s enough.
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