January 27, 2015

"Scott Walker forms committee in preparation for 2016 presidential bid."

Title for the committee: "Our American Revival."
"Our American Revival encompasses the shared values that make our country great; limiting the powers of the federal government to those defined in the Constitution while creating a leaner, more efficient, more effective and more accountable government to the American people,” Walker said in a statement in the release announcing the committee.
To parse that statement, giving significance to the semicolon, I see 2 items, one much more important than the other:

1. "Shared values." This speaks to the "values voters" and social conservatives. You are acknowledged, but this won't be the emphasis, because only what is shared widely will be part of the revival.

2.  Improving the federal government. This is the real emphasis of the campaign. It has 2 parts, the second of which is more important: 1. Constitutional (limited, enumerated powers), and 2. Practical (lean, efficient, effective, and accountable).

That's my analysis, admittedly seen through the lens of my own preference.

ADDED: If that semicolon were a colon, the text would be quite different, suggesting that our only shared values relate to limited, workable government. Forget those social issues.

56 comments:

Anonymous said...

So far, my only issue with Scott Walker is his not pushing back more against the redefinition of marriage.

I'll be very interested to see how he does once he goes into the pit of hell known as the weekend talk shows.

Will he pull a Tim Pawlenty? Or will he stand strong for conservative principles?

Fandor said...

Governor Walker has alot of good ideas.
He is a fighter and a true conservative.
His voice needs to be heard and now is the time.
I'm glad he's tossed his hat in the arena.

Gahrie said...

Bolton/Ernst in 2016

MadisonMan said...

So who will be in charge of the Looney Bin up at the end of State Street when Walker's out campaigning? Vos?

Curious George said...

"...I see 2 items, one much more important than the other:"

There's a semi-colion, meaning that the second is defining number.

I think you need to clean your lens. Walker has it right, limiting the federal government is the first ten steps of righting the ship. It's too late for change at the margins.

Curious George said...

"MadisonMan said...
So who will be in charge of the Looney Bin up at the end of State Street when Walker's out campaigning? Vos?"

Do you not know how the state government functions?

Michael K said...

" Or will he stand strong for conservative principles?"

Social Conservative values. This is of much lower priority to many of us.

I agree the culture is going to hell but the solution is not suicidal stands that will not appeal to the young. This battle has to be fought intelligently in a way that they can understand. That is a tough chore but gay marriage, as annoying as it is, is not such an issue. Suing bakers and photographers is a much better issue.

Curious George said...

All these Walker posts, no garage. Since the Packer meltdown. Ruh roh.

traditionalguy said...

You gotta love it. In two weeks folks have gone from saying "Scott who?" To arguing over how The front runner Walker should do it right.

I predict a surge in traffic at Althouse as the Walker bandwagon rolls on. Who is that guy???

It appears that how Walker handles immigration is the last issue the conservatives want info on before joining him.

Bob Boyd said...

"revival" may not be the best word choice.
It sort of conjures up country folk singing 'Give Me That Old Time Religion' in a tent next to a swamp.


dreams said...

Works for me and it seems to me that his past performance as a Governor should be a good indicator of his future performance. I think its the best indicator.

mccullough said...

The plural possessive is a good way to go.

lemondog said...

Sorry to be shallow but image is important. Suggest he engage a hair stylist that will give his head more symmetry. It always looks a bit... well... lopsided.

Nonapod said...

Walker is already fairly battle-hardened after many years of bitter fights and recall elections. It will be interesting to see how he deals with the shitstorm that is a national level presidential campaign. He's been my personal first choice for a long while when thinking about potential 2016 GOP candidates.

I believe he's got pretty good groundswell support despite not having quite the name recognition and money of Jeb and Romney. He'll have to slay those dragons first.

MadisonMan said...

His hair has always been a problem. I don't know if it's ever looked good. Either the lopsided thing, or the big bald spot.

Certain angles are ok.

Sebastian said...

"1. Constitutional (limited, enumerated powers), and 2. Practical (lean, efficient, effective, and accountable)."

Sounds good, but he needs to think it through: "Gov. Walker, do you believe promoting the "general welfare" is an "enumerated power"? If not, why not? If so, do you think Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, SNAP, disability insurance, and expanded health care coverage promote the general welfare?"

Whether slightly-smaller-govenment can still fly is an open question. Getting a nation of benefit addicts into detox may require a stronger leader than Walker.

Brando said...

It's a good general theme. Let's see what the specific policy proposals will be. I'd like to see some proposals for regulatory reform and addressing entitlements, and reasonable cuts to the military budget. I don't think we'll realistically have any revenue-negative tax reform until the deficit is reduced a lot more.

Brando said...

"Sorry to be shallow but image is important. Suggest he engage a hair stylist that will give his head more symmetry."

Sadly it's incredibly important--same reason Christie has to drop a lot of weight. Voters notoriously pick the candidate who is more symetrical or pleasing to the eye, with few exceptions.

traditionalguy said...

Authentic hair would be a first. And his hair could make the media anchors feel sorry for him. Could it be that Walker's secret consigliere has told him about the LBJ method to succeed in politics.

Bob Boyd said...

It would be a mistake for Walker to start fussing with his hair.
It is what is at this point.

When it comes to what should be done about Walker's hair, "Better than nothing is a high standard."

Brando said...

"When it comes to what should be done about Walker's hair, "Better than nothing is a high standard.""

Yeah, I suppose if he was going to do something about the hair it would have made sense to do it a year or so ago so it'd be old news by the time of the campaign. He seems to have a bit of a lazy eye issue though in most photos I've seen. I don't know if that can be fixed. Of course, if he can engage and speak well and fire up a crowd, and handle well in interviews, little physical flaws can actually work to his advantage and seem more authentic.

One thing that helped Nixon through his career was that while he wasn't a pretty boy, he could appeal to the people who saw him as one of them--a guy who could get ahead despite a lack of movie star looks or family money (contra JFK). So it's all in how you play your cards rather than the hand you're first dealt.

K in Colorado said...

Regarding hair, in the 2012 election, Obama had a lot of grey. Right after the election was over, he suddenly had nice dark hair. So nothing new here if Walker decides to add a hair piece or spray paint his bald spot black.

The Godfather said...

It ought to be a colon, not a semi-colon.

m stone said...

Michael K: I agree the culture is going to hell but the solution is not suicidal stands that will not appeal to the young.

There is truth there from a practical perspective, as in getting the votes. Culturally, I think we need to rebuild some values and priorities (not at all dismissing social issues). We are approaching moral bankruptcy in some areas: bloated government feeding itself, an economically dependent class, intrusion into personal issues, and leadership in the world, which threatens our very existence.

Walker doesn't have it all, but starting at the bottom and working to influence our culture is a start.

Smilin' Jack said...

It ought to be a colon, not a semi-colon.

The semicolon might be excused as a typo, but "more accountable government to the American people"? WTF? How did this clown even graduate from high school?

n.n said...

I interpret the semicolon to join two statements of close or equal parity, where the latter may even be predicated on the former. One conclusion is that it is either principled tolerance or selective exclusion, which is a deferment of reconciliation to Posterity. Also, that it is illogical for a human life to have selective (i.e pro-choice) value throughout its evolution from conception to death. Certainly not for the profits of wealth, pleasure, and leisure, which should repulse civilized people. The evolution of a human life from conception to death is self-evident. Spontaneous conception is not a sincerely held faith, it is unequivocally false. Either we acknowledge the two moral axioms: individual dignity and intrinsic value, or we continue to debase human life and experience the inevitable consequences of practicing the base secular rites.

Larry J said...

eric said...
So far, my only issue with Scott Walker is his not pushing back more against the redefinition of marriage.


With the Supreme Court likely to rule on SSM in June, this is a lost battle. He has nothing to gain by weighing in on it now.

luagha said...

It has been said that there are only two successful presidential campaigns:

"Back to basics" and
"A brand new day."

Obama used 'A Brand New Day.'

Thankfully, Walker is using 'Back to basics.'

Michael K said...

" Suggest he engage a hair stylist that will give his head more symmetry. It always looks a bit... well... lopsided."

Have you seen Kasich ?

I have seen homeless guys with better hair.

Jon said...

Scott Walker is an open borders corporatist who thinks we don't need border security, and that the solution to illegal immigration should be to just let everybody in legally. Really.

https://www.facebook.com/wausaudailyherald/posts/10151442414246784

“Some people talk about border security and a wall and all that. To me, I don’t know that you you need any of that if you had a better, saner way to let people into the country in the first place.”- Walker at 1:27

When primary voters find out how far left Walker is on immigration, he'll be done.

As Mickey Kaus tweeted:

Pro-amnesty Koch Bros. presumably have some influence over @ScottWalker. Have been big backers. Now may kill his chances.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Which is post are you more likely to see here in 2016:

How Scott Walker lost my vote

How the Republican party lost my vote (by not nominating Scott Walker back in July)

The Godfather said...

@jon: I don't see that Walker favoring a "saner way to let people in" means that he supports open borders. I agree that it would be a serious political and policy mistake for Walker to endorse open borders. Purely from a position of US self-interest, we are not focusing on letting into the country those who will make the greatest contribution to the US.

Ann Althouse said...

"It ought to be a colon, not a semi-colon."

It would make more sense with a colon.

Anonymous said...

"I agree the culture is going to hell but the solution is not suicidal stands that will not appeal to the young."

I'm not asking for him to put forward a marriage amendment to the constitution that will never pass. I'm saying a rhetorical defense of traditional marriage, when being interviewed, is a way not to retreat on our culture.



"With the Supreme Court likely to rule on SSM in June, this is a lost battle. He has nothing to gain by weighing in on it now."

The Supreme Court also decided on abortion IE: Roe V Wade, yet the cultural battle rages on.

The Supreme Court is one battle in a long waging cultural war. I have no interest in voting for a President of the United States who cannot stand on moral principles with me.

If he continues to pooh pooh traditional marriage and talk like you have, that it's over, then I'm not interested.

“Some people talk about border security and a wall and all that. To me, I don’t know that you you need any of that if you had a better, saner way to let people into the country in the first place.”- Walker at 1:27

When primary voters find out how far left Walker is on immigration, he'll be done.


I don't know that what he said means anything in the greater picture. We do need a saner way to let people in, and he may be right, that if we did, we might not need all the other stuff. I don't know what he has in mind.

Those words alone don't paint him an amnesty shill, but he'll need to clarify if he wants my vote.

Revenant said...

I'm saying a rhetorical defense of traditional marriage, when being interviewed, is a way not to retreat on our culture.

If you are looking to politicians for leadership on culture, you are part of the problem.

Michael K said...

"Purely from a position of US self-interest, we are not focusing on letting into the country those who will make the greatest contribution to the US."

The present mess of immigration policy goes right back to Teddy Kennedy in 1965.

The legislation, which phased out the national origins quota system first instituted in 1921, created the foundation of today's immigration law. And, contrary to the president's assertions, it inaugurated a new era of mass immigration which has affected the lives of millions.

Despite modifications, the framework established by the 1965 act remains intact today. And, while the reform proposals now being discussed in Congress, the administration, and the Commission on Immigration Reform would reduce the total number of legal immigrants, they would maintain the fundamentals of the 1965 act — family reunification and employment preferences. So it behooves us on this 30th anniversary to look at the act and the expectations its sponsors had for it.


If Walker wants to do sensible reform, that would be OK as long as it is realistic, unlike the present lawless situation.

Jack Wayne said...

Limiting the government, blah, blah. Another "conservative" who has never read the Federalist papers. UNLIMITED GOVERNMENT is what Madison, Hamilton and Jay said we were getting and what we should get.

Anonymous said...

Was at the politico shop, Off-the-Records, near the WH with all my buddies. All are happy. The Dems. (you know: the reporters) are saying: Bring it on. One person said that Scotty - he used this term - will crash and burn as soon as Rubio and Cruz announce. Christie will have him for breakfast, said another. Clinton will chew him up and throw up, said yet another from a foundation working for WH. It was brutal, so brutal that I could not finish my drink. The word is that underground polls show that Clinton will defeat any GOP contender by at least 10% in the South. Figure this out….

Jon said...

"I don't see that Walker favoring a "saner way to let people in" means that he supports open borders."

By itself, it doesn't. But in context, it clearly does. He's saying that the same people who would have come here illegally should just be let in legally, hence no need for border security.

Here's another Walker quote: “If you’re somebody, whether you’re from Mexico or Germany or Ireland, and you want to come to this country legally, we should find a way to make it happen,” Walker said.

So basically, Walker believes that everyone who wants to legally come to America should be able to. All 500 million of them.

Anonymous said...

"If you are looking to politicians for leadership on culture, you are part of the problem."

If Lincoln was a presidential candidate today, I'd expect him to strongly propound upon the evils of slavery. If some clever media personality tried to pin David Duke on him, instead of retreat, I'd expect Lincoln to reload.

If they tried gotcha questions, implying that other popular Republicans were pro slavery, I'd expect him to have a vigorous defense of those Republicans, instead of a mealy mouth response like Tim Pawlenty had when challenged with Sarah Palins targets.

Any politician that retreats when faced with questions concerning our culture, like abortion, traditional marriage, the 2nd amendment, etc, isn't a politician I'll be voting for.

Drago said...

Revenant: "If you are looking to politicians for leadership on culture, you are part of the problem"

Quite so.

Andrew Breitbart was fond of saying that politics is downstream of culture. He would say this as a means of criticizing those conservatives who had the means to purchase magazines/studios etc but did not do so and instead squandered hundreds of millions attempting to influence elections.

Not that there's anything wrong with spending money to influence elections, it's just not the most efficacious way to achieve the desired end result.

chickelit said...

MadisonMan said...His hair has always been a problem. I don't know if it's ever looked good. Either the lopsided thing, or the big bald spot.

Such a MadisonWoman thing to say.

Revenant said...

"If you are looking to politicians for leadership on culture, you are part of the problem."

If Lincoln was a presidential candidate today, I'd expect him to strongly propound upon the evils of slavery. If some clever media personality tried to pin David Duke on him, instead of retreat, I'd expect Lincoln to reload.

... what?

chickelit said...

Brando said...Sadly it's [hair] incredibly important--same reason Christie has to drop a lot of weight. Voters notoriously pick the candidate who is more symetrical [sic] or pleasing to the eye, with few exceptions.

Perfect hair is easy to over do --Romney had "plastic hair" and Edwards was too coifed.

Fritz said...

His hair has always been a problem. I don't know if it's ever looked good. Either the lopsided thing, or the big bald spot.

Certain angles are ok.


Tom or Lorenzo?

The Godfather said...

"ADDED: If that semi-colon were a colon, the text [would] be quite different, suggesting that our only shared values relate to limited, workable government. Forget those social issues."

Yes.

Or almost yes. The shared values that matter in electing a president are those related to Constitutional and competent government. Social issues are important, but the President doesn't decide them. The People and the States are supposed to, and as a practical matter the Supreme Court actually does. One step at a time.

Anonymous said...

Jon,

Why did you change what walker said which was someone, to everyone?

He didn't say if you're someone who wants to come to the United States you should be able to.

Instead, he said, if you're someone who wants to come legally.

Can't we all agree with that? I would disagree if he said everyone who wants to come should be allowed. But that's not what he said.

He has also said that he opposes amnesty and a pathway to citizenship.

So far, I'm not convinced Walker is an open borders guy, or an Amnesty guy. I'll listen closely though to see if he changes my mind on that and becomes a squish.

Achilles said...

Social Conservatives still believe the best way to save traditional marriage is to use the power of government. Same with defining conception as the start of life.

As if our government is succeeding at anything it does now. We should totally be working to have it do more. Absurd.

Anonymous said...

Actually Achilles, I'm a social conservative and I disagree.

We should use the power of gray skull. Combine that with unicorn farts and rainbows and everything will be fixed.

Brando said...

"Perfect hair is easy to over do --Romney had "plastic hair" and Edwards was too coifed."

Yeah, the key is to hit the nice middle ground of no one really thinking about your hair. And definitely don't let it get out that you had a consultant suggest your haircuts--very Bill Clinton!

Brando said...

"If you are looking to politicians for leadership on culture, you are part of the problem".

I agree insofar as the culture has to really change via the media and at the ground level--but politicians always do spout on about cultural issues, sometimes off the cuff (Obama calling Kayne West a "dumbass") and sometimes to signal to supporters that he's on their side on the issue (Dan Quayle single motherhood comments). I would prefer the GOP drop the gay stuff and stick to things that really are problematic in our culture--chiefly, personal irresponsibility and dependency. I don't care if any gay couple that wanted to get married could do so, but I care a great deal about a generation being raised to feel entitled to things they didn't work for.

sonicfrog said...

Why are Conservatives always talking about gays and colons????

They talk about gays and colons more than gays do!!!!! :-)

sonicfrog said...

Being more serious.... What are the economic numbers showing for Wisconsin right now? I was following them last year, and they were en-Toto pretty mediocre.

If "Conservatism works every time it's tried", shouldn't the numbers for Wisconsin - and Kansas for that matter, be better than just average?

http://sonicfrog.net/?p=8453

alan markus said...

Much as I like Walker as Governor, something like this tells me he is nowhere near ready for Prime Time.

Scott Walker: Records show Soviets treated Ronald Reagan more seriously after he fired controllers

Touching on foreign policy issues, Walker said: "Documents released from the Soviet Union" show "the Soviet Union started treating" Ronald Reagan more seriously after Reagan fired the air traffic controllers.

There is a view, echoed by Walker, that the firings caught the Soviets’ attention. But Walker cited no Soviet documents showing that the firings made the Soviets treat Reagan more seriously. And experts, several of whom felt Walker’s claim is outrageous, told us they are not aware that any such documents exist.

Anonymous said...



When he does post you (and your many sockpuppets) threaten him with violence and call him disgusting names in an attempt to drive him away, yet you constantly complain when he doesn't post on this blog.

You're a really sick puppy, no matter which name you are using.

Anonymous said...

All these Walker posts, no garage

When he does post you (and your many sockpuppets) threaten him with violence and call him disgusting names in an attempt to drive him away, yet you constantly complain when he doesn't post on this blog.

You're a really sick puppy, no matter which name you are using.