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Why I Despair
National Review ^ | November 10, 2012

Posted on 11/10/2012 12:06:51 PM PST by Steelfish

NOVEMBER 10, 2012 Why I Despair The central problem is that America, knowing Obama, gave him a second term.

By Charles C. W. Cooke

An apocryphal tale tells of an American who claimed to own George Washington’s axe. “Three times,” he exclaims, the axe has “had its handle replaced, and twice had its head replaced!”

This is a joke that has been rendered in more serious form by philosophers throughout the ages — perhaps most famously in Plutarch’s Life of Theseus – and it may be time now to consider it in relation to the United States. People and countries change, as they must.

But, as with Washington’s axe, to change too much is to invite the possibility not merely of alteration, but of replacement. Predicated, as it is, on an established set of principles — rather than merely on geographical or racial fact — America could presumably reach a point at which it could no longer usefully be called America. How close to that point are we?

I was born in England in 1984, two days before Ronald Reagan was elected to a second term. As a small child, I watched the Space Shuttle take off from Cape Canaveral in Florida. I had an Apollo 11 lunchbox.

With varying levels of awareness, I saw the United States defeat Communism, come to Kuwait’s aid in 1991, and rise to hyperpower status. During the 1990s, I watched in awe as Silicon Valley revolutionized the world.

Once, my father told me that the difference between the average Briton and the average American was that a Briton looks at a man driving a Ferrari and thinks, “What a b*****d,” while an American thinks, “I’ll be him one day.” This my father considered a great virtue — as do I. By the time that...

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1 posted on 11/10/2012 12:06:54 PM PST by Steelfish
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To: Steelfish

Maybe they were intermittently replaced with the originals.


2 posted on 11/10/2012 12:11:34 PM PST by Berlin_Freeper (Unbelievable / Believable!)
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To: Steelfish
To paraphrase Oscar Wilde, to elect such a man once may be regarded as a misfortune, but to elect him twice looks like carelessness. (Or, rather, criminal negligence.)

Or to quote the great philosopher, Gomer Pyle, "Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."

Great read, although I cannot despair. I'm pessimistic about the future of this country, but my hope lies elsewhere. America, as great and exceptional as it is, is not the ultimate answer. I'm waiting on a certain carpenter turned king who will, when he is ready, provide the only true and lasting government for mankind.

3 posted on 11/10/2012 12:21:16 PM PST by newheart (The greatest trick the left ever pulled was convincing the world it was not a religion.)
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To: Steelfish

So do I. We are Argentina now.


4 posted on 11/10/2012 12:27:37 PM PST by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong! Ice cream is delicious!)
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To: Steelfish
Once, my father told me that the difference between the average Briton and the average American was that a Briton looks at a man driving a Ferrari and thinks, “What a b*****d,” while an American thinks, “I’ll be him one day.” This my father considered a great virtue — as do I.

Hell you find some on here with the same "bastard" attitude towards other's material possessions.

5 posted on 11/10/2012 12:33:00 PM PST by Chipper (You can't kill an Obamazombie by destroying the brain...they didn't have one to begin with.)
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To Hell with the despair, cynicism, apathy, and defeatism. The time for redress is now.

All you punks willing to abandon the Country, the Constitution, our children’s future can go straight to Hell.


6 posted on 11/10/2012 12:35:40 PM PST by Gene Eric (Demoralization is a weapon of the enemy. Don't get it, don't spread it!)
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To: Steelfish

Great article. Loved it. I look forward to reading every single article from Victor Davis Hanson and Daniel Greenfield. Truly magnificent minds and awesome writers. Is the single, black mother of three in that government housing in Chicago reading their articles? She wouldn’t even know where to look for them. The first rule of rhetoric is to “Remember the audience”. We sit around and moan about how stupid the Democrat voters are. “Can’t they see the mess they’re making?” probably not, but they still vote. I want that vote. I want to take that vote away from the Democrats. And saying they’re stupid doesn’t get their vote. Who do you know that describes them self as “stupid”? They may not think they’re brilliant, but they think they’re clever or “street smart”. OK. Let them think that. I still want their vote.

“If you understand yourself and you understand your enemy, in one hundred battles, you will never be defeated.”


7 posted on 11/10/2012 12:36:06 PM PST by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: Chipper

I disagree.

What has happened in the last two decades is different from anything before.

We are exporting JOBS.

Jobs.

Jobs which had been held by, and done by Americans. So many millions of jobs, have been exported.

All of those jobs, now are done by foreigners.

Therefore a lot of Americans who used to do those jobs, are out of work.

Money is flowing out of the country.

This is a gigantic fail. In every way.

We must turn it around now.

Bring back American jobs, and close the US to unlimited imports.

Now.


8 posted on 11/10/2012 12:37:38 PM PST by Cringing Negativism Network
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To: Revolting cat!; Steelfish; JRandomFreeper

The despair is going to be in the hearts, stomachs, and heads of those foolish enough not to prepare just a little. Freepers are some of the most aware people I have (met).

There are plenty of warnings that times are a changing.

We had an exceptionally crappy week. My father in law and sister in law dead on the same morning. And a major mistake made by my son. And I think there was an election or something.

So what is there to do?

I’m canning fish. Not too many, but it brings my total up to 37 pints. And I have 52 quarts of venison and elk canned. I’m getting prepared. If you are wondering at how I can bring home enough meat to can some the answer is easy. I marched out into the King’s forest and took what I needed.


9 posted on 11/10/2012 12:46:12 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: Cringing Negativism Network

This is indeed a time to despair. The only thing - barely - between absolute statism and a semblance of freedom was the putative conservative majority on the USSC. Kennedy was a bit of a wild card, but he came through on a number of significant decisions. The duplicity of Roberts has demonstrated that the USSC is lost and will be for a generation after Obama gets to replace at least one of the remaining conservatives on the bench. With McConnell and Boehner indicating surrender with their every action or inaction, all three branches of government are now in the thrall of the statists, all cheered on by a corrupt and self-indulgent Fourth Estate. Yes, miracles do happen. And it will take one for America to pull back from the precipice. The question is, does America deserve to be saved from its own folly?


10 posted on 11/10/2012 12:56:56 PM PST by littleharbour
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To: bigheadfred
Lost a squid buddy myself, yesterday. Zoomie barstid that I am, I shed a tear or thousand.

That flag out front is flying for a certain submariner.

Move forward, soldier on.

We all die someday.

/johnny

11 posted on 11/10/2012 12:58:48 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: blueunicorn6

You won’t ever get the vote of the Obamaphone “lady”. The illiterate slum trash is unreachable. Try to get the vote of the college educated, who won’t read this article either, and won’t bother to look, and if by any chance they read it, (I linked it for some of them on my Fakebook page), it would offend them, I guess.


12 posted on 11/10/2012 1:00:19 PM PST by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong! Ice cream is delicious!)
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To: Steelfish

There are fundamental differences in play here. In the past when America was down, we had leaders who at least wanted America to recover and prosper. 0bama is not an American, having been raised in a muslim culture in Indonesia. His goal is not for individuals to prosper, in fact that is the antithesis of his marxist philosophy, which is wealth redistribution.
His main goal is the destruction of America, not recovery.


13 posted on 11/10/2012 1:02:31 PM PST by The Sons of Liberty (Never Underestimate the Power of Evil or Evil Doers)
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To: JRandomFreeper
Move forward, soldier on.

I thought 2010 was hard. 2011 beat that. Looks like 2012 is in the lead with 2 months 2 go. Yeah, I get mad (and banned), incoherent, sad. But I'm still sucking air.

14 posted on 11/10/2012 1:08:23 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: Steelfish

Thank you for posting such an outstanding article, Steelfish. It is dark and depressing—but these are dark and depressing days.


15 posted on 11/10/2012 1:11:28 PM PST by proud American in Canada (Pray for America.)
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To: Revolting cat!
They won't get this conservative vote either, until they run a conservative. I'm counting 5 elections here where I haven't voted GOP for president in the general election.

/johnny

16 posted on 11/10/2012 1:12:46 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: Steelfish

What was once America has arguably entered the point of no return, degenerating from being the greatest democracy the earth has ever known, to a petty, corrupt and thugish 3rd world socialist state ruled by a de-facto godless one-Party dictatorship. Bereft of morality; bereft of initiative; bereft of hope. May God have mercy on us.


17 posted on 11/10/2012 1:13:12 PM PST by fidelis (Zonie and USAF Cold Warrior)
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To: Steelfish
A very powerful essay, well worth the read.

But have an anti-depressant handy with a glass of Scotch as a chaser :(

18 posted on 11/10/2012 1:13:52 PM PST by NonValueAdded ("Our president ... makes big speeches packed full of little ideas" Charles C. W. Cooke)
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To: bigheadfred

Welcome to prepper life! Don’t forget to stock up on food other than meat, ammo & guns and water. Think about how you will survive with out your furnace, any electricity, or gasoline.


19 posted on 11/10/2012 1:19:04 PM PST by rcofdayton
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To: bigheadfred
Just keep doing that air breathing kind of thing, and move forward.

Right now, I've got a hole in my heart the size of Texas. It will mend. I just have to live through it and not be too obnoxious to those around me.

/johnny

20 posted on 11/10/2012 1:20:15 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: Steelfish
For all those who elected Santa Claus how will you feel when Santa Claus becomes the heartless Grinch? Margret Thatcher said it best.."The trouble with socialism is that soon you run out of other people's money." Look at Greece where there is rioting in the streets because the nation is broke and cannot continue to fund the state sponsored gravy train.

I take hope when I see Argentina where 700,000 people showed up outside the capital and said enough with the corrupt government that has bankrupted the country. We need to see those huge Tea Party crowds again in Washington not just in 2012 but every year. Let Congress and Obama know that millions of Americans will not accept socialism.

21 posted on 11/10/2012 1:21:12 PM PST by The Great RJ
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To: Steelfish

America’s die was cast when we ceased to be a moral country. My own opinion is that the seeds for this were planted in the 1960s. Whenever it occured, we have ceased to be a nation of moral citizens. Oh, there is a solid minority of moral people, but that is not enough to stave off societal collapse and a race toward communism.

We really are doomed. You cannot use the past as any sort of indicator going forward, because the nation is no longer composed of the sort of moral, hard-working, self-sufficient, courteous, charitable individuals who made this nation into what it is and held it there for so long.

Now we have a majority of selfish, greedy people who have no shame or stigma, thinking nothing of murdering the unborn, are proud of their free handouts instead of ashamed, and believe that any way to riches is a good way, be it gambling, crime or other nefarious means.

The America is doomed because the heart and soul of the average American is doomed.

We are no longer the people who in generations past could save this nation from decline, decay and fall. Those people are mostly long dead. In there place are millions of selfish, greedy, lazy scum who want a free ride paid for by their neighbor.

We are no longer a moral people. The US consitution only works for a moral people.

The nation is doomed. It is just a matter of how long until the fall is complete.

Pray to God and apologize to your children and grandchildren.


22 posted on 11/10/2012 1:23:50 PM PST by Freedom_Is_Not_Free (Pray to God. Apologize to your children. America is doomed.)
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To: rcofdayton

I was just checking prices on the big bags of sugar, flour, beans, etc. I have my wood stove, candles candles candles and 3 bottles full of propane for the outdoor grill. And enough firewood for the winter. Total store bought cans at 6 months. Total store at dry goods at 12 months. Need to bring that back to 24. Now would be the time to do it. Sooner would be better.


23 posted on 11/10/2012 1:29:53 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: JRandomFreeper

Condolences, bro. Be obnoxious to me if ya need.

“Clock Stikes 12 And Moondrops Burst At Out You From Their Hiding Place”.


24 posted on 11/10/2012 1:33:35 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: bigheadfred
War ain't hell. Life is hell. At least in war you can shoot back at the bastards.

/johnny

25 posted on 11/10/2012 1:36:05 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: Steelfish

I almost cried reading this.
I also know that even if you get conservative leadership many moons from now, the country would be almost impossible to fix.

Once the healthcare system has been ruined, it will never come back as it was. Those choices we had will be gone.

I despair for America too. I am just now coming out of deep mourning and getting around to digesting the coming nightmare in a country where I no longer feel welcome.


26 posted on 11/10/2012 1:42:58 PM PST by dforest
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To: Steelfish

“a Briton looks at a man driving a Ferrari and thinks, “What a b*****d,” while an American thinks, “I’ll be him one day.” “

I think, “Damn. Sorry about your penis, dude.”


27 posted on 11/10/2012 2:21:18 PM PST by Psycho_Bunny (Thought Puzzle: Describe Islam without using the phrase "mental disorder" more than four times.)
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To: bigheadfred

I am really concerned that in 2016 Hillary will run for President. How do we even try to put a candidate up against her?

Then we have Boehner and McConnell...forcing their pick against what our people want....

Then we have our campaign fiasco against theirs....the fraud, etc.

Sometimes I wonder if we shouldn’t have put all the forces and money against obtaining the Senate majority. At least then we would have a chance to impeach and/or stop Obama reign for next 4 years.


28 posted on 11/10/2012 2:36:42 PM PST by Engedi
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To: Chipper

I agree Chipper. Resentment demonstrated here on FR toward wealth is evidence we have passed the tipping point.


29 posted on 11/10/2012 2:37:55 PM PST by sockhead (Socialism: trickle up poverty.)
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To: Engedi

Hillary would have run better if her daddy had shot her agin the wall instead. I a have a prediction. obama will be assassinated in his 7th year. And the Tribulation will end.

CHRIST IS KING.


30 posted on 11/10/2012 2:41:50 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: JRandomFreeper

I don’t understand: why do you have a hole in your heart if you didn’t vote for the GOP in the last 5 presidential elections?


31 posted on 11/10/2012 2:42:59 PM PST by sockhead (Socialism: trickle up poverty.)
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To: Psycho_Bunny
“a Briton looks at a man driving a Ferrari and thinks, “What a b*****d,” while an American thinks, “I’ll be him one day.” “

I think, “Damn. Sorry about your penis, dude.”

Nothing like putting the horse before the cart.

32 posted on 11/10/2012 2:45:53 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: sockhead; JRandomFreeper

I got this J.

STFU sockhead.


33 posted on 11/10/2012 2:47:51 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: Gene Eric

“To Hell with the despair, cynicism, apathy, and defeatism. The time for redress is now.
All you punks willing to abandon the Country, the Constitution, our children’s future can go straight to Hell.”

Couple of sayings. First I do not know the source for:
“Reality is what it is. It is not what we believe it to be.”

Second from a gal who wrote a lengthly book many folks in this forum have read:
“We can evade reality. What we cannot evade are the consequences of evading reality.”

Those who are downhearted have a basis for so being. They don’t wear blinders, but have taken a look at reality, looked into the future, and cannot discount or ignore what they see.

Just came back from my evening walk with a few thoughts. One is that we are approaching a point where those in this country who believe in conservatism, tradition, and “the old ways”, are on the verge of being (or already are) outnumbered by those who believe in none of those things, and who openly loathe such ideas.

There will be no way to win these folks over to our side with reason (or even pandering), now or in the future. What we have to offer, they don’t want. And what they want, the other side promises to them and has their loyalty, whether it delivers or not. There is a chasm between “us” and “them” as deep and wide as the Grand Canyon. That is reality.

It’s as if our ship of state has struck the iceberg. The bow is down in the water, starting to slip under. At this point, does it make much sense to argue that we should pull together and save the ship?

Of course, that analogy is from the Titanic, as were some of my thoughts from the walk.

There came a point, as the last lifeboats were pulling away, that Captain Smith went to the wireless office to tell the operators (still at their posts) that they were relieved. It’s been years since I read Walter Lord’s book, but he detailed the conversation as the Captain saying they were released from their duties, and to try to save themselves. I do remember a line from the book: Captain Smith told them, “That’s the way of it at this kind of time.”

I think we’re coming to that point as conservatives in a nation that seems to be disintegrating around us. We have pretty much “done our duty” — yet still, our message is rejected by a growing proportion of the population, who clamor for socialism. Their numbers are increasing, like water pouring into the hull, pulling us downward.

Conservatives must redirect their efforts. Our future is not to save a ship that refuses to be saved, but rather to save ourselves, our families, with the help of those around us of like minds. That is now “our duty”.

I sense Ms. Rand had something similar in mind with her book. She, too, realized that the system could never be repaired as it stood, but would have to collapse totally before it could be resurrected. But before that reconstruction can begin, we must first survive the collapse with strength enough to rebuild, when the time comes.

Because “That’s the way of it at this kind of time”.


34 posted on 11/10/2012 2:57:52 PM PST by Road Glide
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To: proud American in Canada

Yes, its truly sad. I think in many respects the article answers many of our concerns on how on earth this could have occurred. This was a change election and boy didn’t we get one brought to us courtesy by a seismic shift in demographics by people to whom food stamps and amnesty trump everything else and a current of single white women that has become a rage against anyone who dares to talk about personal responsibility and individual liberty.


35 posted on 11/10/2012 3:04:54 PM PST by Steelfish (ui)
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To: Psycho_Bunny

I think that more about the guys with monster-chassis vehicles.


36 posted on 11/10/2012 3:06:41 PM PST by RichInOC (Palin 2016: The Perfect Storm.)
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To: bigheadfred

Another Obama voter, eh? You speak their language. Thanks for the enlightenment.


37 posted on 11/10/2012 3:29:03 PM PST by sockhead (Socialism: trickle up poverty.)
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To: Steelfish
There will be little virtue in America if it becomes a larger version of Britain, but with free speech and the right to bear arms.

God grant that he is correct about those rights, they may be the only way we can ever get back what has been stolen.

Regards,
GtG

38 posted on 11/10/2012 3:29:45 PM PST by Gandalf_The_Gray (I live in my own little world, I like it 'cuz they know me here.)
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To: sockhead

I’m telling your mom.


39 posted on 11/10/2012 3:30:51 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: bigheadfred; null and void

“If you are wondering at how I can bring home enough meat to can some the answer is easy.

“I marched out into the King’s forest and took what I needed.”

An absolute truth in 2012.


40 posted on 11/10/2012 3:31:09 PM PST by fanfan ("But if Muslims were asked to go to church on Sunday and take Holy Communion there would be war.")
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To: The Sons of Liberty
His main goal is the destruction of America, not recovery.

Right, I just hope he doesn't invite the "Caliphate" in to help with the dismemberment of our society. JRandom said we all will die, I am not going until I can send some on ahead.

Regards,
GtG

41 posted on 11/10/2012 3:41:11 PM PST by Gandalf_The_Gray (I live in my own little world, I like it 'cuz they know me here.)
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To: Gandalf_The_Gray; Steelfish; sockhead
There will be little virtue in America if it becomes a larger version of Britain, but with free speech and the right to bear arms.

God grant that he is correct about those rights, they may be the only way we can ever get back what has been stolen.

you didn’t vote for the GOP

Another Obama voter, eh? You speak their language. Thanks for the enlightenment.

Sockhead. LIVE FREE.

42 posted on 11/10/2012 3:43:44 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: newheart; Steelfish
I'm pessimistic about the future of this country, but my hope lies elsewhere.

Mine, too, newheart.... but in the meantime, my kids will need food and shelter.

The craziest thing about this essay is, it was written by someone born in 1984. Jesus. Think about that. You want to talk about despair??? Think about how FAR we have fallen in so short a time. Then remember, with Obozo, everything happens on steroids.

43 posted on 11/10/2012 3:43:44 PM PST by workerbee (The President of the United States is DOMESTIC ENEMY #1)
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To: workerbee

Would you have guessed ten years ago that we would have fallen this far, this fast? I would not have.


44 posted on 11/10/2012 3:48:17 PM PST by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: Revolting cat!

The second term will see the real Obama come out—It will be a good thing to have him exposes and ripped apart by the media. People deserve the leaders they get. God will punish America for the election—at least I believe this is possible. Look to see a return of Old fashioned racism—real racism. Now, Obama could change—he could re-invent himself like Bill Clinton did—never happen.


45 posted on 11/10/2012 3:53:21 PM PST by Forward the Light Brigade (Into the Jaws of H*ll)
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To: riri

Of course not.

I remember when Obamugabe won (quote, unquote) the ‘08 Democrat primary. I said to my husband, hallelujah! NO WAY will this country elect someone named “Barack HUSSEIN Obama” a mere 7 years after 9/11!

It is to weep.


46 posted on 11/10/2012 3:58:06 PM PST by workerbee (The President of the United States is DOMESTIC ENEMY #1)
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To: Engedi

“I am really concerned that in 2016 Hillary will run for President. How do we even try to put a candidate up against her?”

In 2016 I believe Hillary will be 68, probably too far along to run for the presidency. Look at her -now-. :)

I would be far more leery of the ‘rats pushing Michelle Obama at us, with the argument that “he can’t run again, but she CAN”….

Of course, Valerie Jarrett will -still- be running things and pulling the strings...


47 posted on 11/10/2012 4:12:47 PM PST by Road Glide
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To: Gandalf_The_Gray
>”There will be little virtue in America if it becomes a larger version of Britain, but with free speech and the right to bear arms”<

Progressives don't believe in Free Speech and they certainly don't like the idea of an Armed Citizenry.

Not only did the Electorate choose insanity over reason, they validated all the lies and hatred toward Conservatives and Republicans expoused by the Left.

Special Ed Schultz and Crissy Tingles are now aligned with the “mainstream” majority and we have become the the Tea Party Fringe. The Constitution and the Rule of Law are outmoded concepts.

Long live Pharoah Obama, the giver of Food, Phones and other people's money.

48 posted on 11/10/2012 4:19:46 PM PST by Kickass Conservative (Win or lose, Impeach Obama Ben Ghazi...)
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To: Gene Eric
There is no 'country' to abandon now.

...Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, ...

When elected officials and bureaucracies act outside the law they are simply lawbreakers. When the majority of the people vote in favor of the lawlessness that has greatly manifested itself in the highest offices they have withdrawn their consent to be governed by a constitutional government. By what legitimate basis does the United States of America, as a Constitutional republic, still exist?

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

'The People' no longer support that. They voted in support of lawlessness from the highest office on down. They voted against the rule of law. By referendum we now have a banana republic. The USAINO.

49 posted on 11/10/2012 5:03:35 PM PST by TigersEye (Who is John Galt?)
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To: bigheadfred
you didn’t vote for the GOP Another Obama voter, eh? You speak their language. Thanks for the enlightenment.

Just where did you ever get an idea like that? I've been a rock ribbed conservative since you were wearing three cornered pants. You are apparently off your meds.

50 posted on 11/10/2012 5:11:06 PM PST by Gandalf_The_Gray (I live in my own little world, I like it 'cuz they know me here.)
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