Carly Fiorina: gender is more important than merit

January 22, 2010

I’m a great admirer of Dr. Martin Luther King, and particularly of one statement of his that crystallizes what politics in America should be:

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

And, I think we can all agree, that should include gender, too.

Trouble is, Carly Fiorina doesn’t agree. Listen to this:

In other words, it’s more important that half or more of the elected officials of our government be women, rather than the most qualified person or the person preferred by the electorate regardless of gender. To Carly Fiorina, who has presented herself as a conservative for the Republican nomination for US senator from California, it is more important to represent demographic groups than individual citizens. This is nothing less than identity politics, and it is disturbing to say the least that someone who positions herself as a conservative running for office in a nation founded on the worth of the individual would advocate this. It is the fool’s path to a quota system and corporatism, something I would expect from Obama and the progressives who dominate the Democratic Party, not a Republican.

Tell me, Carly, since California is more than 30% Catholic, will our government be truly representative only when one-third of the legislature is Catholic? If it climbs to 40%, is our government no longer representative, even though those assemblymen and senators were duly elected by the people? And what about overlap between groups? If a legislator is a Black Catholic lesbian, in which group do you put them to determine “true representation?” Or is this the ultimate in efficiency, three groups for one seat?

How about we treat people as individuals, judging them by their deeds and the content of their character, and not by the meaningless accidents of biology?

Thankfully, California Republicans have a much better choice, a candidate who understands our founding principles: Chuck DeVore.

(Source: Red State. There’s a second audio from the same event in which Fiorina praises a observation made by Reverend Jesse Jackson. The post’s author wants us to be outraged by this. Well, I’m not. Don’t get me wrong: I think Jackson is a con artist, a race-baiter, an extortionist, and an overall slime of a human being, but there wasn’t anything particularly appalling in the statement Fiorina quoted. In fact, the real problem is that it was utterly vapid, a banal slogan pretending to be perceptive insight, something that Jackson specializes in. That Fiorina quoted it as wisdom is not evidence of her closet lefty-ism, but of her political shallowness. That’s the problem.)

UPDATE: I missed this earlier, but Sister Toldjah points to an article from the San Jose Mercury News about Carly’s foot-in-mouth moment, including a response from Chuck DeVore. More from Michelle Malkin.


A liberty issue

August 1, 2009

Mark Steyn zeroes in on the real problem behind ObamaCare and all other state-run health plans: it’s not so much the cost as the freedom of the individual:

That’s the argument that needs to be won. And, if you think I’m being frivolous in positing bureaucratic regulation of doughnuts and vacations, consider that under the all-purpose umbrellas of “health” and “the environment,” governments of supposedly free nations are increasingly comfortable straying into areas of diet and leisure. Last year, a British bill attempted to ban Tony the Tiger, longtime pitchman for Frosties, from children’s TV because of his malign influence on young persons. Why not just ban Frosties? Or permit it by prescription only? Or make kids stand outside on the sidewalk to eat it? It was also proposed — by the Conservative party, alas — that, in the interests of saving the planet, each citizen should be permitted to fly a certain number of miles a year, after which he would be subject to punitive eco-surtaxes. Isn’t restricting freedom of movement kind of, you know . . . totalitarian?

Freedom is messy. In free societies, people will fall through the cracks — drink too much, eat too much, buy unaffordable homes, fail to make prudent provision for health care, and much else. But the price of being relieved of all those tiresome choices by a benign paternal government is far too high.

Government health care would be wrong even if it “controlled costs.” It’s a liberty issue. I’d rather be free to choose, even if I make the wrong choices.

Read the whole thing. People are rightfully (and increasingly) appalled at the astronomical, economy-busting costs and taxes and tangled bureaucracy this plan would entail, but they need to understand the core issue: surrendering control over one’s basic decisions regarding health, whether it be over medical procedures or lifestyle, fundamentally changes the nature of the relations between the government and the citizen. The latter goes from being the source of sovereignty from which government derives its powers to being no more than “the governed.”

If Thomas Jefferson were alive today, he would be at once disgusted with the Democratic Party he helped found and affrighted by the willingness of so many to embrace what he would call “tyranny.”

LINKS: Fausta’s blog. Gaius at Blue Crab Boulevard thinks the best way to stop this train wreck is to insist Congress require itself and all federal employees to take part. I agree.