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Jewish World Review Nov. 5, 2004 / 21 Mar-Cheshvan, 5765

Tom Purcell

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Oh, Canada | Disgruntled liberals are talking about moving to Canada. For the good of America, we can only hope.

You see, my intellectual elitist friends, you're not only hurting your party, you're hurting our country. You're hurting our country because of your manner.

Let's go back to the primaries for a moment. At the time, many honorable people were struggling with Bush's decision to take us into Iraq. The war was going badly, employment could have been better, gas prices were high. Your party could have offered up solid solutions to these ills, but you didn't.

No, instead of examining Bush's policies in a logical and reasonable manner, you took the impulsive and self-absorbed route. You turned Bush into a lightning rod for every ill in America, real or imagined, and blamed him for every one.

It was clear you enjoyed shouting and screaming. You enjoyed the emotional group-think. Early on you chose Howard Dean as your loudspeaker and your hooting and hollering felt oh, so good.

And when Dean cracked up, you shifted to Kerry. He was your best shot to win, you thought. The fact is he could have won — all he had to do was demonstrate to middle America that he was a reasonable alternative. But you wouldn't have any of that.

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No, instead of approaching the opposition rationally and intelligently, you attacked them emotionally. You could have found a Clarence Darrow or two to articulate the moral strength of your anti-war position in Iraq, but you preferred fellows like Michael Moore.

I admit I was stunned by the reaction to his "documentary." I wasn't surprised by his skillful mix of half truths that he wove together to make outrageous claims. But I was surprised that you fell for it hook, line and sinker. Even when Andrew Sullivan and Christopher Hitchens, reasoned liberals both, decried it, you paid no heed. It felt too good to vent all the emotional hatred for Bush.

Still, you nearly had the man on the ropes. Thanks in part to a willing media, his poll numbers were down. Despite a poorly run Kerry campaign, Kerry was still closing in. All Kerry had to do was show how he would move America forward.

But that was too much for you. Instead of putting forth fresh new ideas on the economy, health care, education and entitlement programs, you preferred the same old bilge. Instead of offering bold, new solutions to our problems so that our future would be better, you looked backward. The only glue that held you together was your single-minded hatred for Bush.

And so you lost.

You can't understand how you lost. Such understanding would require self awareness, and self awareness is something that people attain through logic and reason — the things you threw overboard throughout this campaign. You are still mired in emotion, impulsiveness and self absorption, which is why some of you want to move to Canada.

I think you should go. The Democratic Party is in a shambles because of you. The snooty arrogance and intellectual dishonesty of the likes of Al Franken have blinded you and clouded your judgment. You offer your party nothing but whining and moaning and anger now.

That's bad news for America. Republicans are much better when they face stiff competition, but the Democrats offer them little of that. The fact is there are good and bad ideas in both parties. Without competition, Republicans are getting lazy and sloppy. They're spending money like drunken sailors. They're straying from the principles that helped them return to power in the first place.

That is why I hope you get your act together. Why don't you do what Republicans did when they were out of power. Think. Reason. Innovate. Come back with new ideas to help the country face down the considerable challenges we face in a rapidly changing new world. Then we can argue and debate and may the best ideas win.

But if you prefer to stay lost in your snooty self-absorption, we'd all be better off if you move to Canada. They have socialized medicine and high taxes. That ought to cheer you up.

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© 2004 Tom Purcell