Conservative Judo: How to Fight the Smears and Take the Offensive
To quote someone we all know and love, let me be perfectly clear: The mainstream media is the bought and paid for lapdog of the liberal Democrat elite. It will not only never give conservatives a fair hearing but will actively distort, lie and slander in an effort to destroy any conservative it sees as a threat to its masters. So why the hell do conservatives treat its members with anything other than contempt and allow it to set the agenda and exploit fault lines in the movement?
Easy – conservatives tend to be polite, reasonable people with a genuine interest in honest debate and a quaint belief in the efficacy of things like “facts” and “evidence” as a way to demonstrate the truth. No wonder they get rolled. The other side believes in none of those things – its only belief is that leftism must prevail and any other value is disposable if it turns into a liability. The answer is conservative judo – understanding how the Left works and using its own weight and momentum against it. We need to start being less like butt-kissing conservanerd David Brooks and more like butt-kicking conservastud Chuck Norris.
Conservative judo means going on the offense and keeping on the offense. It’s not about reasoning with unreasonable people; it’s about using their own strengths against them to defeat them. It has application to the GOP candidates for sure, but it also applies to those of us in the real world facing liberals every day.
The bizarre Rick Perry rock pseudo-scandal is a wonderful teachable moment for conservatives, mostly because the GOP candidates’ reactions allowed this contemptible lie to gain steam. The Washington Post ran a story that some idiot wrote a racial slur on a rock at some ranch where Rick Perry hunted. Now, one might observe that the facts and evidence show that about 30 years ago the Perry family got a hunting lease and promptly painted over the word. One might also note that Perry was a Democrat at the time. Moreover, the sources who disagree can’t agree on a different timeline and won’t give their names – inconsistent, anonymous hearsay is apparently acceptable when it comes to conservatives.
But none of this matters. It’s not about “facts” or “evidence” or even “truth.” It’s a calculated smear designed by a liberal rag to slander a leading GOP candidate. Moreover, it is another example of a partisan political publication hiding behind the lie that it is an objective news source. It is not. The Washington Post, like the New York Times and the vast majority of mainstream media outlets, is an active collaborator with the liberal elite. If it weren’t, Andrew Breitbart would not be the one breaking the story of Barak Obama’s game of patty cake with the expressly black supremacist New Black Panthers.
The question is, then, why the other GOP candidates tolerated this attack instead of coming to his defense – after all, this was an attack not just on Rick Perry but upon every conservative. This was pure innuendo designed not just to trash one candidate but to feed a narrative that all conservatives are just one sheet away from an old fashioned cross burning of the kind dead Democratic icon Robert Byrd would have enjoyed in his pre-Senate capacity as a KKK Kleagle.
Herman Cain fell right into the trap. A good man, it seems he did so here not in a short-sighted attempt to capitalize on the blow to Rick Perry but because he was genuinely disgusted with the idea that some nitwit would paint that sort of thing on a rock. When asked about it (at the 3:42 mark) by Chris Wallace of Fox News, he responded that it was “insensitive.” Well, “insensitive” is one word for it – Cain was being kind. My saltier characterization would have included an adjective beginning with an “F.” Cain later clarified that he was referring to the person who wrote it, and that he did not believe the Rock of Outrages represented Perry’s belief. Too late. The damage was done.
He had reinforced the meme by not aggressively attacking it with conservative judo. He should have said to Wallace, who himself was forced into raising the issue on his show by the fact that the Post ran a huge front page story, something like:
Chris, I read the Post's story and it was a transparent slander of a good man. I’m not going to play that game and comment on the lies of people without the fortitude to make their accusations in public. It was journalistic malpractice to run that story and I’m disappointed that you were forced to ask me something based on such shoddy reporting. My question is where was the Post when Barack Obama was spending 20 years listening to Reverend Wright’s sick racist rants? Where was the Post when he marched with the New Black Panthers? Where was the Post when his Department of Justice started basing its prosecution choices on the races of the criminals? Is the Post and it's liberal comrades covering for him on purpose?
You don’t acknowledge the lie. You turn it around and attack the premise – and the bogus journalistic integrity these hacks pretend to possess in order to enhance the credibility of their smears. It’s conservative judo – you go on the offensive and make the liberal water-carries like the Post defend their failure to adhere to their supposed standards (For those Alinsky mavens out there, that’s Rule No. 4).
The liberal mainstream media's power is such that they can ignite a fire storm that even fair and balanced media like Fox News must cover; conservative judo turns that into an opportunity for a counterattack.
Cain screwed up twice this weekend. He also allowed the Obama “defense of gay soldiers” meme to take root when he said that he regretted not reacting to the booing after the gay soldier asked a question at the last debate. Again, the facts don’t matter. That the booing was by perhaps two people out of thousands (See for yourself, which is more than the MSM will let you do) and that the booing was for the question as opposed to “the soldier” do not matter. Not at all.
The purpose of this meme is to allow liberals, whose record of contempt for the military speaks for itself, to attempt to take the moral high ground of supporting our troops in order to divert attention from their utter failure of governance. And Cain, by responding without challenging the premise, fell into the trap. He’s a decent guy. Booing is not nice. It’s easy to see how he walked into the ambush his MSM interviewer, Christiane Amanpour set for him.
The proper response was:
I know what you are doing and I’m not here to allow you to divert people’s attention from President Obama’s track record of total failure with what you know is a bogus charge promoted by the Democrat party and its leftwing associates. Do you really think a couple people’s opinion about a debate question is more important than the pay-for-play capitalism of Solyndra? If the Democrats really cared about the people who protect us, why are they obstructing the Fast and Furious investigation of how guns Eric Holder allowed to be sent to Mexico ended up killing to US federal officers?
Never – ever – fight on your opponents’ terms. If you do, you accept their premises, and if you accept the premises of the Democrat media complex you are already on the way to losing.
Cain is a great American but an inexperienced candidate who has not learned that he has no obligation at all to assist the press in their schemes. The press is not some collection of neutral factfinders on a mission to provide objective truth to the American people. It’s a player, and it’s on the other team.
No conservative has any moral or other obligation to answer any question from the MSM. None. Rejecting them drives the MSM tools nuts too, which is a fringe benefit – their egos are totally bound up in the pose they assume as Guardians of the Truth. It crushes them to be treated like the partisan hacks they are – partisan hacks, mind you, that become less powerful each day as the circulation of their primitive newspapers shrinks down to nothing. Employ the conservative judo, and don’t let them tap out.
Cain can easily come back from this misstep; this is a learning point for a new candidate, and he remains an awesome potential nominee. Nor is he alone. Rick Perry made a similar mistake with his “heartless” comment. It’s pretty lame to see a dedicated conservative labeling other conservatives “heartless” because they disagree with his position – especially when that feeds the Left’s larger meme of conservative cruelty. Nor is Romney innocent with his Social Security pandering. Both have more experience in the arena than Cain and both ought to know better.
Yeah, in the short term buying into these premises might have hurt their opponents, but in the long term it trashes the movement. And candidates, your personal career goals are absolutely irrelevant to the movement – if you choose to harm the movement to further your own campaign you demonstrate that you are unworthy of our support.
There is nothing wrong with disagreeing, but the lazy and shortsighted tactic of jumping aboard a liberal media meme to try for a tiny bounce in the polls helps the real opposition more than the short-sighted candidate. And it alienates conservatives who hate seeing potential candidates line up with the Left.
In everyday life, conservative judo is important too. As a conservative, you’ll be faced with all manner of liberal memes designed to shake your faith in constitutional conservatism and to reinforce the faith of liberals who look around and can’t help but see their damage their idiotic policies are causing the country. That’s why liberalism’s main effort today is distraction – they want to draw peoples’ attention away from the wreckage of the economy and the Administration’s utter failure at all costs. “Rick Perry saw a racist rock!” is the equivalent of yelling to a Labrador retriever puppy, “Look, a squirrel!”
Don’t let them get away with it.
Step One: Recognize the tactic. Any time a liberal mentions an issue, a controversy or some other ginned-up kerfuffle, you can be sure that the purpose is to paint conservatives as racists, sexists, homophobes, imperialists or some other “ist” that they consider bad this week. Take up your conservative judo fighting stance!
Step Two: Redirect the blow. Point out exactly what is happening:
I see you are trying to imply Rick Perry is a racist because someone else did something a long time ago, but it’s pretty clear what you really want to do is not talk about 9% plus unemployment under Obama. I don’t blame you for trying – with a record of failure like Obama has, I can see why you want to try and divert attention by making up stories.
Step Three: Strike the Gut. The staggering hypocrisy of the Left, which is more racist, more sexist, and more bigoted in general than the Right could ever be, provides a delightful smorgasbord of hypocrisy to choose from. Find it, and slam it home:
What I want to see is the President explain why he would appear on the same stage as the New Black Panthers. I mean, first he sits in Reverend Wright’s pews for a couple decades, then he eulogizes Democrat icon and KKK kleagle Robert Byrd, and now he’s marching with his pals in the Black Panthers. If Perry did any of those things, I couldn’t support him. How can you still support Obama?
Just let them savor that for a while. And remember, you can never reference Democrat icon and KKK kleagle Robert Byrd often enough.
Conservative judo is the synthesis of the recognition of the nature of our opponents and their favorite strategies with a fierce delight in counterattacking in order to retake the offensive and defeat their schemes. Our candidates need to understand who they are dealing with and they need to understand that any backpedaling that accepts liberal premises simply makes the real opposition stronger. And we need to do the same in our own lives.
Now get out there and make Chuck Norris proud!