Get ready for a stampede of RINOs. Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss. We all get fooled again.
It looks like the Republicans might run Tommy Thompson against Russ Feingold in Wisconsin. Tommy Thompson is everything that is wrong with the GOP. He is a RINO but will never be called a RINO because he is a social conservative. In Tommy Thompson we see the conflict between fiscal conservatism and social conservatism writ small. To the country's detriment, the social conservatives have always won that battle.
The biggest philosophical contrast between the George Bush II Administration and the Clinton Administration is the notion that Christian bureaucrats can perform administrative functions as well as lesbian bureaucrats. "None of the above" was ever presented as an option. At Health and Human Services, Tommy Thompson followed the not asked and not told (but frequently rumored) Donna Shalala. Q. Who did the better job? A. Who cares.
I for one would like to see most if not all of HHS defunded. I would keep the Centers for Disease Control at all costs and I would have something like the Food and Drug Administration replace the abominable Food and Drug Administration. The rest of the Agencies in that Cabinet could go the way of the dodo bird and most of us would not miss them.
Tommy Thompson's most noteworthy action ( i.e. an achievement minus the achievement part) in his tenure as Secretary of Health and Human Services was to try to ban ephedrine. I say try to ban, because anyone with an Internet connection and a credit card can still get the capsules, if not the tea. In interest of disclosure, I used to drink a propietary ephedra tea designed by Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw. It was great. Kind of like coffee but different. In some ways, it was better.
No one ever died drinking ephedra tea. For that matter, the capsules were as safe as most OTC products. You could hurt herself with capsules if you were reckless, but isn't that true of everything? And yet, Tommy Thompson, member of the party that preaches smaller government and personal responsibility and lesser regulation, promoted an ephedra ban. Why?
Simply put, Tommy Thompson, like a lot of Republicans, is an advocate of the Nanny State. They might preach this or that but scratch their skin and they bleed bureaucratic blood. Tommy Thompson is a Democrat in drag. But wrap him in a Christian blanket and no one will ever know the difference.
However, there is something more sinister to this story than Beltway bullying. The ephedra ban was part of a larger international movement (the word conspiracy is appropriate in this context but I will tone it down and use the word movement) to control every facet of American behavior, especially diet. This topic generally does not attract the attention of the news media for a myriad of reasons. It's not sexy. It doesn't fit the left vs. right format. It is woefully complex.
At the heart of the issue is bureaucratic fiat. It is one thing for our elected officials to gather in formerly smoke-filled rooms to legislate against freedom of choice. But it is a constitutional sacrilege to dope slap the populace with bureaucratic fiat. If we had true liberals and true conservatives in office they would, for slightly different reasons, do battle with the fourth branch of government. But we don't have true liberals or true conservatives in Congress. We have an assembly of bureaucratists. Elected officials who reflexively promote the sanctity of whimsical regulation and duplicate forms. Bureaucracy now! Bureaucracy forever! Hail to the Secretary!
Bureaucratic fiat is always sinister but it is downright diabolical when it threatens US sovereignty. It is a sad state of affairs when bureaucratic thugs promote Ralph Nader's agenda or Meme Roth's agenda or a Greenpeace/Sierra Club Agenda. But whatever else we might say about these chronic know-it-alls, they are Americans promoting what they see as the best course of action for their country.
However, when our bureaucratic thugs whore out to secretive panels who convene in Austria, US sovereignty is forever imperiled. It might be a stretch to call Tommy Thompson a traitor but his loyalty to OUR country and OUR constitution has to be questioned. Idiots like Sean Hannity will not question Thompson's loyalty or his judgment. Hannity will lead cheers for this creep.
In the person of Tommy Thompson we have a career hack who does not care for individual freedom, bureaucratic restraint, the US Constitution or US sovereignty. We have a socially conservative apparatchik. A soulless, clueless boob whose only qualification for office is that he is not named Russ Feingold. Oh, and one more thing. His commitment to fiscal sanity has to be questioned. I was unable to find the clip from the 2008 presidential campaign when Ron Raul was asked how he would cut spending. He rattled off the elimination of several Cabinet-level money pits including Thompson's former employer, HHS. When Tommy Thompson was posed the same question, he paused to adjust to the headlights and meekly offered up the practice of stockpiling vaccines. The pundits chuckled and served up Exhibit A of "How the Republicans Lost Their Way."
Here come the RINO's!