In an era filled with professional political pundits who at times seem more interested in 1-upping each other rather than genuinely addressing the realities of the day, Matt Lewis has officially taken the cake. In his column today for the Daily Caller, Lewis explains to us all that it really wouldn’t be that bad to lose in November. Quite the contrary: he tells us that it could actually be the best thing to ever happen to conservatism to sit back and wait four more years.
Lewis’ columns are often quite interesting and thoughtful, but his release today is so utterly illogical and counter-intuitive that it can best be explained as the case of a man simply outsmarting himself. This would be innocuous enough were it not for the dangers such a silly contention could pose if taken seriously. By setting up a rhetorical forest of straw-man arguments, Lewis’ column tries to make people disbelieve their own eyes and ears about the state of America today.
Reading his column, then wanting those minutes of my life back compelled me to write a rebuttal of sorts. For the truth is far simpler than Lewis’ strained presentation: an Obama victory would be bad for America, thus bad for American conservatism.
Now Lewis does try to provide rationales for his contention, but at every stage he tries far too hard to make himself and others buy in to the conjecture. The most laughable of these are the mental gymnastics he endeavors in to diminish the importance of Supreme Court appointments.
Lewis readily concedes that the next Presidential term could include 2 or 3 appointments, and that an Obama administration would ensure these picks tilt the Court to a liberal majority. But the explanation he gives for why this doesn’t matter is solely that Republicans’ track record on appointments is not perfect. Seriously, that’s the entire basis of his dismissing this issue: that Mitt might not go 3 for 3 making selections.
As with so many other parts of his column, here Lewis tries to make the perfect the enemy of the good. Of course Lewis instantly seems to dismiss here the possibility a Romney administration would get it right, that the man who has already brought on the legendary Robert Bork as a legal adviser might avoid the mistakes past Republicans made. But even if Lewis’ fears came true, if 1 of Romney’s picks turned out a mistake, he seems to find no discernible difference between Mitt potentially going 2 for 3 and Obama calculating going 3 for 3 making far-left selections. These are clearly different realities, but Lewis either cannot or does not see this.
On foreign policy, Lewis has evidently concluded that the alpha and omega of our international relations boils down to drone strikes and that Obama’s aggression in this 1 area makes their total views relatively similar. Here even Lewis must concede differences, but in an effort to salvage his argument he concedes them only on secondary issues (Russia) before declaring these irrelevant too. What you won’t find mentioned anywhere in Lewis’ column are numerous areas posing major challenges to American foreign policy: Iran, China, the European fiscal crisis, the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, the UN and its potential gun grab, and more. But to read Lewis, one would conclude that similar views on drone strikes makes all else irrelevant.
Now there is mention of Israeli policy, but only long enough for Lewis to try and make the laughable claim that Romney and Obama don’t differ there. Here again, he bases a logic-defying conclusion on a single piece of evidence: a 1-sentence quote by the Israeli Defense Minister that Obama’s done a good job in regard to Israeli security