But in the Nebraska political world, we are having a discussion about a dead-rat eating beetle.
(Want to back up and find out more than you EVER wanted to know about the American Burying Beetle? Click here for the UNL conservationist POV.)
So Jon Bruning’s camp stated he screwed up making his point when speaking at the LibertyFest the other day. Because it is one that can legitimately be made — and many conservatives make on a regular basis: A tragedy is occurring, but with the government’s plan to fix it, it just gets worse.
Bruning pointed out that instead of the endangered beetles getting saved or moved, they get eliminated, en masse, by the stealthy raccoon.
So the point Bruning SHOULD have made is that this plan for the beetles is not unlike the plan to help those who are having problems financially. The government comes up with the “plan” to help them, and instead sticks them to a Welfare system where they can’t / often don’t want to get out.
JB’s problem here is that he took related ideas and connected them at the weakest spot – the raccoon and the Welfare recipient.
The real connection between the stories of the beetle and those on Welfare isn’t at the raccoon, or even the beetle. It is at the Government who thinks their plan for each is the best and the only plan. And both plans have unintended consequences.
Then again, the point that went unsaid by Bruning was that in the beetle story, when the government tries to save the beetle, they not only end up killing waaaay more beetles than the road crew might have. They also stop the road project. Stop people from getting paid. Stop the road.
And what are all the consequences of that? Did some road crew worker then not have enough to pay for — whatever? Let’s say it was a life-saving operation (because you can guarantee that’s the type of scenario the libs would come up with). Or let’s say it was simply that they didn’t spend X amount, and then on down the chain, someone else and someone else and pretty soon there’s a Depression. (Again, using the lib formation.)
Anyway, lest the blogs and news outlets distract you, there IS a point to be made in JB’s story — problem is he really did not make it. At least not the way it should have been made.
In the mean time, he got CAUGHT by a Tracker! We have a guess who that Tracker was, and a fairly clear idea who he/she was working for. American Bridge 21st Century is neo-liberal David Brock’s group which catalogs Republican candidate’s public statements. They do it on a huge level with the Presidential candidates, and are obviously doing it at the Federal candidate level as well.
The video spread across the liberal blogs with the headline: Nebraska Republican thinks welfare recipients are raccoons! And the libs jumped on that story like a raccoon eating grapes from a jar. (“Blogger compares liberals to raccoons!”)
Even someone who listened to the whole thing would find that a leap. But of course, the point isn’t what he really said, or the discussion above or even about the American Burying Beetle. It is about a political statement, that can be taken out of context and used against a candidate.
The Bruning campaign already has the problem that their candidate likes to speak off the cuff — and likes sounding folksy while he does it. He likes to twang like a good-ole-boy, and play to his audience. And that will get him into trouble. And this is not the first, and will not likely be the last time.
We don’t mean to crank on JB for this, but only to point out what he and his camp and the rest of the party know already. And if the idea of “reigning him in” is somehow distasteful to them, we would suggest this: Being some sort of “gunslinger” is not what makes Bruning, Bruning. Speaking articulately, clearly, SLOWLY and thoughtfully will make him successful in this race. He is never going to come off as dull, no matter what he does.
Going away from the “lemme tell ya somethin’ folks” approach may likely save him from a potential macaca disaster down the road.
But will it turn into a “any news is good news” kind of moment for Bruning?
At this point the video has gotten nearly 25,000 YouTube hits. It has been featured in several liberal blogs (TPM, The Atlantic, Wonkette, Huffington Post), and in the OWH and Channel 6. Heck in the LJS it has received over 140 comments.
Joe Jordan is piggybacking off The Atlantic story with the idea that national conservatives may like to hear the idea that Bruning stated and money-bomb him. Or could it simply have the opposite effect of scaring the people at the NRSC or other national — not to mention local — fundraisers. As you may know, Bruning is not past his primary yet. And you can bet that the Stenberg and Fischer camps are going to use it as an opportunity to say that Bruning is not fit for the gig.
The other side as well, is that national liberals — especially the hard core Daily Kos types — HATE Ben Nelson. They hate the fact that he does not come through for them 100% of the time and constantly pine for him to get a primary opponent. (Which of course will never happen.)
But when you take a look at many of the comments in the various blogs, they say, “I may hate Nelson, but I could never stomach this guy.”
We will not know what effect the video has had for a few months, or maybe even next year. But we would guess we will see something.
Moving along, the Don Walton of the LJS wrote a piece about the Twittering class (including yours truly here at L.St.) and their Twitters. We thought of this while reading @JaneKleeb ‘s Tweet about the aforementioned Beetle. She breathlessly tweeted, “Bruning is also making fun of an endangered species we have in our state” Oh my, what of the Beetle! What of the Beetle!
If we know Jane, there will be suddenly be a whole colony of Beetles that will be building condos in the way of the Keystone XL Pipeline sometime soon.
And what of Jane and her fellow Pipeline Tweeps?
Jane was recently re-Tweeting the tweets (gawd we hate that verb/noun) of “@AJStream” on the pipeline issue. But AJStream is not just some other liberal anti-pipeline, anti Tar Sands group.
Nope, the AJ in AJStream stands for Al Jazeera.
Yes THAT Al Jazeera. They turned to the acronym “AJ” to move away from the negative public perception, much like how KFC tried to get rid of the “Fried” in their name.
Hmm. Wonder what the interest of a Quatar-based media network is in an oil pipeline from Canada to the US? Gee, what would THEIR interest be?
Of course many liberals even know about Al Jazeera’s bias, especially their anti-American bent. And their anti Tar Sands Oil stance is only obvious. But Jane and her clan keep on re-Tweeting Al Jazera right along, since they jibe with their orthodoxy.
And FWIW, Jane was asking her Tweeps to vote on the Channell 10/11 (which is it!) poll on the pipeline. So far, hasn’t turned out too well for her…
Yeah, we thought long and hard on that headline up above.
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