War, said Carl von Clausewitz "is a continuation of politics by other means." He might also have observed a truth that seems always to escape congressional Republicans — that politics itself is war by other means.
As a result they continue to lose that war.
Newt Gingrich understood the need to confront what he recognized as the enemy with all the weapons available, and he set the stage for 12 years of uninterrupted Republican control of Capitol Hill, which the congressional wing of the GOP finally squandered by witlessly squandering the taxpayers' money as if they were Democrats.
The current wisdom widely and joyfully parroted by our wonderfully unbiased mainstream media is that election year 2008 is the congressional GOP's Waterloo — a debacle that will result in an even greater paucity of Republican faces on the Hill, with Democrats winning even wider control of the House and dramatically expanding their current wispy, single-vote control of the Senate.
Up until now, we have heard no challenges to that gloomy prediction — only whimpering like whipped curs from House and Senate Republicans facing what they accept as their coming Armageddon.
They seem determined to lose this war by refusing to understand that they are fighting a war and acting accordingly.
I spent a few years back in the '60s as a Republican functionary on the Hill when it often seemed you needed to hire a private detective to find a Republican member.
The wisdom among Republicans then was that this was the proper order of things and must be accepted as such. Heavens forbid that we would arm ourselves and go into combat — for heaven's sake, we might lose! So we did, until Newt showed up on his battle steed, lance aimed forward and ready to go to war. I was long since gone by then, but I cheered from the sidelines.
Newt's gone from the Hill, but he's still armed for combat and his dispirited former colleagues need to listen to him and understand that despite the current wisdom, they have all the weapons they need to go into battle with an enemy in disarray under a corrupt and very much unhinged leadership in the House and Senate.
It has become increasingly clear that the Marx brothers and the Three Stooges have been loose on the Hill since the voters chastised the congressional Republicans by sending them home in large numbers to reflect on their sins.
You have to lack a sense of the ridiculous to fail to recognize that Madame Pelosi and dour old Harry Reid are utterly and completely incompetent and as such a clear and present danger to the stability of this nation.
Monday, Pelosi faced one of the most crucial votes in the history of Congress. When she lacked enough Democratic votes she desperately needed to pass the rescue, she was thoroughly dependant on House Republicans to make up for the deficit. That didn't stop her from taking to the floor and sticking her finger in Republican eyes. That cost her the margin she needed from the GOP.
In the two years of her leadership in the House has failed to deliver on the majority of the promises she made upon becoming apeaker. Instead, time after time she has allowed a shrunken GOP minority to run circles around her, especially when she has tried her utmost to lose the war in Iraq as she promised her party's nutcase far-left wing she'd do.
Over on the other side of the Hill, Harry Reid has been equally clueless, actually insisting that the war in Iraq was lost even when the surge was turning the tide. He has been unable to fend off Republicans in scores of skirmishes. Most recently, he spurned the efforts of Sen. John McCain to rally Republicans to find a solution to the nation's financial crisis, telling him to butt out at a time when his help was vitally important.
Listen guys, you have all the armament you need to go into battle against one of the most defenseless foes around. They stand naked and weaponless and you can defeat them and win control of the Hill if you will only recognize you are at war and are willing to fight with every weapon available to you — and you have plenty.
Your enemy, the congressional Democrats, are incredibly vulnerable. You can roll over all those Democrats who were elected in 2006 and win control of the Hill if you will go after them hammer and tong.
It's war. Go win it.
Phil Brennan is a veteran journalist and World War II Marine who writes for Newsmax.Com. He is editor and publisher of Wednesday on the Web (http://www.pvbr.com) and was Washington columnist (Cato) for National Review magazine in the 1960s.
He also served as a staff aide for the House Republican Policy Committee and helped handle the Washington public relations operation for the Alaska Statehood Committee which won statehood for Alaska. He is also a trustee of the Lincoln Heritage Institute and a member of the Association For Intelligence Officers.
He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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