(/sites/default/files/uploads/2012/06/monica.jpg)Editor’s note: Monica Crowley will be speaking at the Freedom Center’s Wednesday Morning Club on Thursday, July 12, 2012 in Los Angeles. For more info, click here.
Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Monica Crowley, a political and foreign affairs analyst for the Fox News Channel who hosts the nationally syndicated radio program The Monica Crowley Show. She has also been a regular panelist on The McLaughlin Group. She served as foreign policy assistant to former president Richard Nixon from 1990 until his death in 1994, and has written two bestsellers about her experiences: Nixon Off the Record and Nixon in Winter. She has also written for the New Yorker, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, and the New York Post. She holds two master’s degrees and a doctorate from Columbia University. She is the author of the new book, What the (Bleep) Just Happened?: The Happy Warrior’s Guide to the Great American Comeback.
FP: Monica Crowley, welcome to Frontpage Interview. It is an honor and privilege to speak with you.
Crowley: Thanks for having me, Jamie. It’s an honor for me to join you. You guys do heroic work.
FP: Let’s begin with what inspired you to write this book and what it is about.
Crowley: I wrote this book for several reasons. First, I surveyed all of the destruction and despair wrought by Team Obama and their fellow leftists and thought, “Are we supposed to just to accept this?? Just accept radically redistributionist economic policies, unprecedented spending, record-breaking deficits and debt, non-existent economic growth, socialized medicine, and American decline abroad? Just lie back and take it? Oh hell, no!“ I wrote this book to reinforce the notion that America CAN be saved from this assault—-and that she is WORTH SAVING. Obama may be doing his best to turn America the Exceptional into America the Also-Ran, but he didn’t count on us running a great defense.
Second, I wrote it because if you have only listened to the mainstream media, you have only received a small—and very distorted—part of the Obama-era picture. I put together the entire Obama domestic policy record with the entire foreign policy record—and when you see all of the evidence amassed in one place, it’s devastating. Part of the power of the book is seeing the sheer volume of leftist madness to which he’s subjected us. Never before have we had a president so hellbent on redistributing ALL of our greatness, not just here at home, but abroad. I wanted to shine a light not just on the policies he’s implemented but on the very sophisticated leftist psychology he and his team have used to get it done.
I also made the book really funny, because in the age of Obama, if we don’t laugh, we cry, and there’s no crying in a book by Monica Crowley.
And finally and most importantly, I wanted to create a new template for America in the 21st century. Obama did it from the left in 2008, and now it’s our turn. I developed the concept of the Happy Warrior as a rallying cry for those of us who want to restore America to its great foundational principles: individual freedom, personal responsibility, fiscal restraint, and economic liberty. President Reagan was the quintessential Happy Warrior, and no one loves, respects, and admires Reagan more than I do. But Reagan served 30 years ago. If we’re going to have any hope of getting America back on the rails, we’ve got to take his positive embrace of conservatism and bring it into the 21st century. Like Reagan, we know we’re in a war for the future of America. And like Reagan, we join the battle joyfully and with the full confidence that we can win the battle of ideas and bring America back.
This book is the fun, spirited, optimistic battle cry of the new Happy Warrior!
FP: Tell us about that title! How did you come up with it—-and what does the “Bleep” really stand for?
Crowley: I was going to call it Fifty Shades of Obama but then thought better of it.
One day last summer, I was having dinner with a good friend. I told her that I wanted to write another book but wasn’t quite sure as to what its focus should be. We then started talking about how epically weird the last few years under Obama have been. Every day, we were getting hit with a new piece of insane leftist social engineering or some new policy to take down American power or prestige abroad—a rapid-fire assault I call “Barack-a-mole.“ Our enemies were getting olive branches, our allies were getting dissed, and millions of Americans were being moved into government dependency at home. “What the (bleep) just happened?” I sighed. She looked at me and said, “That’s your title.“ And so it came to be. Of course, I used an actual unprintable word. I thought I’d let each reader supply his or her own favorite profanity.
FP: Expand for us on the disasters that have occurred under Obama in your view—and why he has behaved as he has.
Crowley: Obama doesn’t run around wearing a Carrie Bradshaw-esque nameplate necklace that says, “Socialist.“ But his policies, actions, words, background, and associations speak louder than any ID necklace ever could. As a technical matter, economic fascism (government control of the means of production without ownership) more accurately describes what Obama is carrying out than socialism (government ownership of those means of production), but “fascism” and “socialism” are highly charged words—and arguments over the labels often obfuscate the reality of the policies. Obama has engaged in extreme government-directed redistributionism to undermine the free market, generate widespread dependency, and further centralize state power.
In the end, the term matters less than his policies and their effects. This is a man who spent his formative years learning at the knees of assorted communists, from his mother and father to Frank Marshall Davis to the Marxist professors and sundry socialists he admitted he sought out while in school to the self-avowed Communists (Van Jones, “green jobs” czar), Mao admirers (Anita Dunn, communications director) and radical redistributionists (Cass Sunstein, regulatory czar) he appointed as president. He spent a good deal of time mastering the art of Saul Alinsky’s tactics for advancing the socialist revolution. In 2007, he said of his years learning Alinsky’s methods, “It was that education that was seared into my brain. It was the best education I ever had, better than anything I got at Harvard Law School.“ Indeed.
FP: You say he then made it to the big stage and governed strictly according to that redistributionist ideology in which he was so steeped.
Crowley: Without a doubt. Obama never made a mystery of who he was or what he believed. He employed those revolutionary tactics as a Chicago community organizer and then moved on to pull more formal levers of power. Once he seized the brass ring in 2008, it was “Katie, bar the door.“ He immediately put the redistributionism of Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson on steroids: he spent trillions of dollars—particularly on “stimulus” and other spending projects which stimulated nothing but government, added an unprecedented $5 trillion to the national debt, and engaged in massive social engineering in every major part of the U.S. economy (the financial sector, the industrial base, the energy sector, and health care).
He moved to divide Americans based on class, race, and gender; after all, if Americans are pitted against each other, they are too distracted to focus on what he’s doing. He has deliberately and quickly moved the United States toward a European-style social democratic state, despite the fact that those nations are currently imploding from decades of socialist redistributionism. Obama’s intent is to expand government dependency in order to ultimately create a permanent Democrat voting majority. Any other American president would’ve been flipping his lid over the kind of chronically high unemployment we’ve suffered. Not Obama. The more folks unemployed, the more dependency being created. And if this were allowed to go on, supported by the redistributionist agenda, America would be truly altered. (This is, by the way, what he meant when he spoke about “change.”)
In the immortal words of Rev. Al Sharpton in 2010: “First of all, then we have to say the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they elected President Obama.“ So the leftists knew it at the time, but did most of the American people? Apparently not.
This is why Obama has had to move with such dispatch: he had to slam as much of the redistributionist agenda into the first two years, before the American people got wise to what he was doing and began to put a stop to it, as they started to in 2010. When Obama spoke in 2008 of “fundamentally transforming” the nation, many people assigned an innocuous meaning to that statement. We now know what he really meant, and we’re getting ready to reject wholesale that sick, destructive socialist agenda.
FP: Is there anything about Obama that strikes you as impressive?
Crowley: Yes. His absolute and unwavering commitment to his philosophy and his steely discipline in affecting it as policy. He is single-minded and uncompromising in his beliefs and relentless in seeing through his mission. It’s truly astonishing.
FP: What’s your view of Governor Mitt Romney? Can he take on Obama effectively?
Crowley: I think Governor Romney is exactly the right man at exactly the right time. He may not be the conservative dreamboat for whom many of us pine, but he knows that the very existence of exceptional America is at stake. After years of supremely effective business and political leadership, he knows how to put this country back on its traditional rocket path of job creation and economic growth and innovation. He’s a man of tremendous personal and professional integrity; even Bill Clinton called his business record “sterling.“ Romney has the potential to be a truly great president given the enormous challenges he will inherit.
First, however, he’s got to get there. And as a candidate, he’s been far more formidable than many people—not least of whom, Team Obama—expected. Romney is NOT John McCain, Bob Dole, or George H.W. Bush, God love ‘em. Romney is a different political animal. He’s a political killer, which is what we need to go up against the quintessential political killer, Barack Obama. I would like to see more of the Happy Warrior in Romney, though. If he adopts that joyful stance that comes from a genuine love of America, this race will be his.
FP: What would the great American comeback that you are calling for entail? Do you think it is really possible? What if the comeback doesn’t take place?
Crowley: The great American comeback involves a few things. It involves first the American people carrying out a version of the Hippocratic oath: First do no MORE harm. We must begin by handing Obama and his band of leftists (what I call in the book “the kooks”) a thundering repudiation in November. Leftism in all its forms must be halted and turned back resoundingly.
Then we must focus on getting this country back to limited government, fiscal responsibility, and free market capitalism. This is going to be exceedingly difficult to do because the kooks aren’t going to go down without a fight, particularly if they lose their grip on power in November. But again we must recognize that we are in a war, and as with all wars, this one is going to require pain and sacrifice in order to get the country back on track. None of this will be easy, and it’s going to require enormous courage, tenacity, and good humor—on the part of our (hopefully) new leaders and on the part of the American people.
The nation is at the proverbial fork in the road. One path will lead us to Obama’s ultimate vision of Orwellian statism. The other path will lead us back to what made us exceptional from the start: individual freedom and economic liberty. If we choose the Obama path, it will spell the end of America as we’ve always known it. This is not your grandfather’s or even your father’s Democrat party; today’s party morphed into a far more radical and determined leftist army long ago—and without much notice. The kooks have been running the show for several decades, but have done it in hyper-speed once Obama took office.
Once the tentacles of redistributionism wrap themselves tightly around every part of the economy—and around our psyches—they can never be unwound. Once the majority is dependent on government in significant ways, we will have passed the tipping point. America as an economic dynamo will be no more, America as an international superpower will be no more, and America as an exceptional nation will be no more. It’s not too late to save her. The choice is still before us, but time is running out. We’ve not a second to waste.
FP: Monica Crowley, thank you for joining Frontpage Interview.
And we encourage all of our readers to get their hands on Monica Crowley’s book. What the (Bleep) Just Happened? Is simply brilliant. Buy it!
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