Tuesday 8/16/16

  1. Voting against your interests 1
  2. Voting against your interests 2
  3. “The right to be believed” bites HRC on the arse
  4. He who must remain unnamed
  5. Olympics’ coolest optics?
  6. Democrats on religious liberty freedom to worship

1

Whether the people in question are in fact voting against their own interest by aligning with the GOP is a matter for debate, but the point is they don’t believe that’s what they’re doing, and it’s important to understand why.

English writer Emma Lindsay made one of the best such efforts I’ve seen this year, writing earlier about the exact same kind of dismissal that Pelosi and many others have made:

While the majority of democrats I know do tend to keep it civil with each other, nearly all of them will rail on ‘ignorant’ republicans who ‘vote against their own best interests.’ Thing is, Trump supporters don’t vote against their best interests, democrats just don’t understand the interest they care about most.

It’s dignity….

We are depriving the white working classes of their means to give. As we export manufacturing jobs internationally and as we streamline labor with technology, we start moving people to the sidelines. It’s not just that they have less money, it’s that their identity as providers is being threatened. This is why they are often so against welfare. Even if it would fix their financial situation, it would not fix their identity problems. It would hurt their dignity. While the working class is undoubtedly worried about the economy, we already know many will not vote in their economic best interests. They vote for the candidate who promises a return to dignity, and it’s not because they’re dumb. It’s because they care about their dignity more than they care about their finances.

(Christian Democracy Magazine, “God, Gays, and Guns”: Are Poor Whites Voting Against Their Own Best Interest?) Emma Lindsay, cited and hyperlinked in the article, has some uncommonly sensible comments about racism, too.

2

Analogous thoughts from a source that probably would recoil in horror from Christian Democracy:

Let us assume for the sake of argument that these upper-class progressives are correct: that liberal programs are better for the economy than are conservative approaches. If so, then on that basis they could legitimately believe that the non-wealthy who vote Republican are acting against their own interests. But this argument limits human interests to materialist concerns. That may fit progressives’ priorities, but not everyone shares those priorities.

Many people are convinced it does no good to have a great economy when their culture fails to encourage the morality and discipline it takes to have a fulfilled life. Because these values are so crucial in their minds, voting to support them is voting for their own self-interest, regardless of the negative short-term economic effect their votes might have. When the religious values of those in the lower classes are attacked, it denigrates their culture. It’s a judgment against what they value most highly. Have progressives considered that?

There are plenty of other issues beyond material concerns that can legitimately drive non-progressive votes. They might decide that they are safer with a non-leftist criminal justice approach, or with a more aggressive foreign policy. Why should anyone assume they know what is better for those in the lower classes than they do?

(George Yancey, Progressives, Please Stop Saying ‘Voting Against Their Own Interests’)

3

Juanita Broaddrick joined Twitter in 2009. The 73-year-old retired nursing home operator from Van Buren, Arkansas, tweeted a few times about the weather, Weight Watchers, and drinking coffee on her porch, then abandoned the service until fall 2015, when Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton made a series of statements that enraged her.

In September, Clinton tweeted that every sexual assault survivor had “the right to be believed.” In November, she reiterated that “every survivor of sexual assault deserves to be heard, believed, and supported.” The following month, she was asked at a campaign event whether the handful of women who’ve accused her husband, former President Bill Clinton, of sexual harassment and assault — Juanita Broaddrick included — deserved to be “believed” as well.

“Well, I would say that everybody should be believed at first until they are disbelieved based on evidence,” Clinton replied with a smile that was just one awkward beat too slow.

Broaddrick oozes genuine, sweet-as-sweet-tea Southern hospitality, but she went “ballistic” when she heard Clinton’s statements on sexual assault, she recently told me. It had been years since Broaddrick had spoken publicly about the Clintons. Sitting at home, alone and fuming, Broaddrick thought to herself, What can I say to make this believable to people, that this really happened to me? She signed back in to her dormant Twitter and started typing. In January, one tweet went viral: “I was 35 years old when Bill Clinton, Ark. Attorney General raped me and Hillary tried to silence me. I am now 73….it never goes away.”

Broaddrick claims Bill Clinton raped her in 1978, when he was Arkansas’ attorney general, during what she thought would be a morning business meeting. As with many rape allegations, there is no way to definitively prove what happened, especially since Broaddrick didn’t speak out for decades. Through a lawyer in 1999, Bill Clinton denied assaulting Broaddrick and has never been charged. (A spokesperson declined to comment further to BuzzFeed News.) But contrary to what Hillary Clinton alluded to last fall, there is no concrete “evidence” that discredits Broaddrick’s rape claims. Her allegations have long been an inconvenience for Democrats — and an extremely convenient cause for Republicans to champion.

(Katie J.M. Baker, Juanita Broaddrick Wants to be Believed) I understand that rape victims have been ill-treated often, but reckless “rights talk” is not the solution. It’s kind of delicious that Hillary re-opened this wound by pandering about “the right to be believed.”

4

Interesting things continue to be written about the man boor I resolved to try to write no more about, but nothing I regret omitting from my last word on the subject.

5

It was getting kind of late, and I didn’t realize that the 400 meter World’s Record Wayde van Niekerk broke was 17 years old and was thought to be unbeatable. But I couldn’t help but chuckle that his coach is a white-haired 74-year-old woman, or cheer as she broke down in joy. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who could hardly believe it.

6

What does the Democrat Platform have to say about religious liberty? Very little and little of it is good. This is about as strong as the Democrats promise to be: “We support a progressive vision of religious freedom that respects pluralism and rejects the misuse of religion to discriminate.”

This is strong though euphemistic code language for rejecting conscience protections generally, now redefined as a “license to discriminate.”

The Democrats take Trump to task for “vilification of Muslims. It violates the religious freedom that is the bedrock of our country and feeds into ISIS’ nefarious narrative.” I have criticized Trump’s words myself. But it is striking how vilifying and directly attacking the livelihoods of gay marriage dissenters and traditional religious believers does not even register to Democrats as a matter of concern.

Internationally it is good to see that Democrats are “horrified by ISIS’ genocide and sexual enslavement of Christians and Yezidis.” But gay rights figures far more prominently in the Democrats’ promise to “protect our values” internationally:

Democrats believe that LGBT rights are human rights and that American foreign policy should advance the ability of all persons to live with dignity, security and respect, regardless of who they are or who they love.

The overarching premise underscored in the platform, the self-conceit of the Democrats, is that “above all, Democrats are the party of inclusion.”  Democrats believe they

will always fight to end discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, language, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability. We need to promote civility and speak out against bigotry and other forms of intolerance that have entered our political discourse. It is unacceptable to target, defame or exclude anyone because of their race, ethnicity, national origin, language, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability.

This is the new mantra of the Left: We will exclude you in the name of inclusion, hate you in the name of stamping out hatred, stereotype your views in the service of stamping out bigotry.

Somewhere Orwell is laughing, maybe. But not me, not here, not now.

(Maggie Gallagher) The fundamental problems here are that Democrats are intruding on civil society and imposing their own crypto-religion. The Republicans, who are in a mess, captured it in their platform preamble,

where Republicans say that the President and the  Democrats “refuse to control our borders but try to control our schools, farms, businesses, and even our religious institutions.” Admirably, the platform cites the Declaration of Independence to admit that “if God-given, natural, inalienable rights come in conflict with government, court, or human-granted rights, God-given, natural, inalienable rights always prevail.”

(Still Gallagher)

* * * * *

“In learning as in traveling and, of course, in lovemaking, all the charm lies in not coming too quickly to the point, but in meandering around for a while.” (Eva Brann)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.