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Friday, December 22, 2006

A bottle full of stupid

They tried to demonize him, he
ran for president.

Giuliani: the man to defend American culture
To win the GOP nomination, socially liberal Giuliani must burnish to conservatives the tough-guy credentials he earned as New York mayor.
Jonah Goldberg

December 21, 2006

AMERICA NEEDS a Pym Fortuyn, and Rudolph Giuliani may be the man for the job.

Pim Fortuyn, you may recall, was the gay, flamboyant sociology professor turned "right-wing" Dutch politician who took a hard-line position against immigration and Islamic extremism — two issues inextricably linked in a country where whole communities have become enclaves of Sharia law. Fortuyn was labeled as right wing by identity-politics leftists for his unapologetic view that the Netherlands should stay both liberal and libertine.

His basic view was that the Netherlands has a culture too, and there's no shame in defending civil liberties, free expression and tolerance against their opponents, even if those opponents exploit liberal guilt by casting themselves as victims. In other words, Fortuyn wanted to keep the party going, and that meant taking a strong line against the killjoys. That Fortuyn could be both libertarian and tough-minded caused great cognitive dissonance in the media and on the left — there and here. He was assassinated by a left-wing extremist.


Giuliani needs to tell a story of how he beat Al Sharpton at every turn. Giuliani's cheery immigrant story and his personal liberalism make him a particularly formidable spokesman for such a vision. Yes, taken piecemeal, his views on social issues could be a real albatross in GOP primaries (though it's worth noting that Giuliani, while personally pro-choice, signals that he would appoint judges in the mold of Supreme Court justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas). But if Giuliani can make those sorts of issues seem secondary to a broader defense of American civilization, he's got a chance to go all the way.

If America needs a vile, divisive bigot, Giuliani is your man.

But Goldberg is on crack if he thinks Sharpton lost ground to Giuliani. In 1993, Sharpton was known, but he certainly couldn't command the power of the city's black politicians.

By 1999, he was the most powerful black politican in New York. You simply could not mobilize people without his support. But once you did, you could shut the city down. It was Sharpton's direct action which forced Giuliani to meet with black politicians.

Sharpton played Giuliani and forced his hand more than once. He never called him a racist, and made sure to be around who ever challenged him, from cab drivers to gays.
Goldberg lives in DC, right? Because if he said that to Mike Bloomberg, he would laugh in his face. Giuliani made Sharpton a national figure.

posted by Steve @ 12:28:00 AM

12:28:00 AM

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