Commentary

Complainers vs. Planners

In the wake of the Republican presidential debate, the Wall Street Journal observed that GOP candidates are now trying to win support as either “fighters” or “statesmen.” The fighters concentrate on battling against forces that they fear and resent, while the statesmen promise to build consensus for a reform agenda.

Actually, conservatives demand both: a willingness to fight for principle, and a vision to fix what’s wrong. Another way of contrasting political approaches would be distinguishing between talkers and doers, or between complainers and planners.

In this election, it won’t be enough to denounce the other side; many Americans, perhaps a majority, have come to resent both sides in our polarized politics. The challenge is to persuade those who are deeply disillusioned with American politics, showing it’s possible to bring real change to increase opportunity, improve education and stimulate economic growth. Republicans can only win with programs that are positive, pragmatic and plausible; anger alone is not an agenda.

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Mohler: Walking Through The Camps

Planned Parenthood has been in the headlines in recent days since July 14, when a group known as the Center for Medical Progress began releasing videos demonstrating the fact that Planned Parenthood’s senior medical personnel have been directly involved in the sale and transfer of fetal tissues. The American people now face the fact that they cannot not know.

At the end of World War II, General Dwight D. Eisenhower required many of the civilians who been living around Nazi concentration camps, living in denial what was going on at Auschwitz ,Treblinka, Birkenau, and so many other death camps—he forced the civilians to walk through the camps and realize exactly what was going on.

The release of these videos is a very important step towards making Americans walk through our own camps, in this case the abortuaries and face directly the reality of abortion and in particular, the complicity not only of Planned Parenthood but of all the American people.

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Brooks: Conservatives Who Care

A recent poll from Gallup showed that three out of four Americans are dissatisfied with the United States. Yes, you heard me right—three quarters of our fellow citizens.

The basic bargain in America is supposed to be that no matter where you start out, if you work hard and play by the rules, you can make out all right.

But people look around today and see that the poor have gotten poorer, work has disappeared for those at the bottom, government dependence has grown and mobility has fallen.

Why aren’t Americans turning to conservatives for solutions? Simple: People don’t think conservatives care.

Consider this:

Do you think the word “compassionate” describes the Republican Party?

Over half of Americans say “not at all” … and only five percent say “compassionate” describes the party “very well.”

This has to change. The right must show the American people a new vision of compassion and fairness that emanates from deep within—in the title of my latest release—the “Conservative Heart.

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Medved: How To Beat Planned Parenthood

To win the battle over funds for Planned Parenthood, conservatives must make clear that we’re trying to end government sponsorship, not destroy the organization. Federal money provides only a third of the Planned Parenthood operating budget: the rest comes from donations and fees for services.

Those who admire the organization could increase those donations to replace governmental support—a total of $528 million, when state contributions are included. Even though Planned Parenthood insists that these funds don’t go directly to pay for abortions, they do support an advocacy organization that strongly backs abortion in public debate. Imagine how outraged liberals would be if millions in taxpayer money went to a group advocating strongly for a pro-life position!

Especially in view of the horrifying videos showing the callousness of Planned Parenthood operatives, this cause must unify values conservatives who care about defending life, and economic conservatives who want to cut wasteful, misdirected spending.

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Medved: The Question Trump Can’t Answer

In the GOP debate, Donald Trump said he couldn’t commit to support the ultimate nominee, and refused to rule out a third party run, but he never faced the obvious follow-up question. If he really cares about the conservative principles he now espouses, why wouldn’t he promise to support the Republican nominee?

Does he think that there is any chance that Hillary Clinton would come closer to representing a conservative agenda than any conceivable GOP candidate?

Trump’s position on this issue exposes the limitations of his presidential campaign: it’s entirely about one man and his brash personality, and has nothing to do with needed conservative reforms. Yes, Trump talks a lot about immigration but offers no solutions beyond building a “big wall.” His plan for the economy is nothing more than “I’m a great negotiator and can bring back jobs.” The presidency isn’t a dictatorship, and focusing on personality more than principle is a dangerous indulgence.

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Hewitt: Endangering National Security

Pepperdine California Democratic Party

John Deutch was a long-serving intelligence professional who was forced to leave the CIA after it was revealed he improperly stored classified material on a home computer. Prosecution was considered but declined by then Attorney General Janet Reno.

General David Petraeus is an American hero who was prosecuted pursuant to 18 USC Section 1924 for mishandling classified information.  He pled guilty, was sentenced to two years probation and fined $100,000.

Now the evidence mounts that not only did Hillary Clinton greatly endanger the national security by maintaining a private email server for all her official and unofficial State Department business and not only did she improperly erase thousands of those emails without review, she almost certainly violated the same law as did Deutch and Petraeus.

Every Republican has to make Mrs. Clinton’s lawlessness part of the campaign. Democrats should as well … if they have the national interest at heart.

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Brooks: Cynicism Is Easy 8-10-15

Sometimes I’m asked whether my faith in our political leaders went up or down when I started working closely with the politicians we all see on TV. You might be surprised to learn that my estimation of these men and women actually went up—a lot.

It’s easy to be cynical about politicians. We live in an age in which tearing down the high and mighty has become a twisted type of public sport. But being a member of Congress (or running for President) is a crushing job. The cognitive demands are intense, the travel is punitive and the personal attacks are relentless. It’s hard to understand why someone would seek these jobs. Yet they do, and not for exorbitant pay either. Some just love the perks and power, I suppose.

But I can say after getting to know many quite well that most do it because they truly love their country.

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