The Aldrich Alert
Gary Aldrich

A Publication of the Patrick Henry Center for Individual Liberty

All That is Needed For Evil to Prevail

by Gary Aldrich - Volume I, Issue 6

What a difference an election makes. After a surprising first-place finish in New Hampshire, and a substantial second place in Delaware, where he did not campaign, Senator John McCain has created a full-fledged race in the Republican Party process to select a worthy candidate. Suddenly, George W. Bush is no longer considered the inevitable winner.

Perhaps one reason why Bush is loosing ground to McCain is that McCain is pointing at the 800-pound elephant in the room -- the Clinton-Gore character issue. After he lost the 92 election, and when true character problems surfaced in the Clinton-Gore Administration, President Bush was quick to tell the media that he did not believe in criticizing his successor. It was about politeness and civility, you see. Nevertheless, much damage has been done to the institutions that his administration worked so hard to build. Iím a fan of the Bush family, but even Iíve been puzzled by the silence.

But, that was then, and this is now - this is for all the marbles, but even Governor Bush seems reluctant to point a finger at such obvious wrongs, instead using veiled language and general statements about maturity and decency needed in our White House. Canít he understand that the American people are desperate for leadership about these real life issues?

This weekend, I attended conservative meetings in St. Louis, where hundreds of concerned citizens, mostly parents and grandparents, expressed dismay and bafflement at the apparent surgical way the entire Bush family stays away from frank discussions about "the elephant." To some, it appears that they have made a science out of avoiding the many horrible things Mr. and Mrs. Clinton, and Gore are doing to the presidency, our national security and our nationís values.

Governor Bush should consider that if he doesnít address the Clinton character issues and the serious damage that has been done by these counterculture socialists from the Sixties - he stands to cede the big character issue to McCain. Senator McCainís war record makes him the apparent anecdote for the "virus" the Clintons bring to our nationís capitol.

I am not sure Senator McCain is the correct cure for what ails us now. His temperament, the shady deals known as the "Keating Five" and his stated position that non profit foundations like this one are somehow a threat to our national elections and health, make him a scary and questionable choice. Whatís wrong with asking government hard questions?

However, I know the Bush family very well. They are decent and law abiding, and I have no fear at all that a "new" Bush Administration could damage my childrenís future, as long as conservatives like us keep the pressure up for real meaningful change and reform. Governor Bush does not fear public opinion, but Senator McCain has already said he intends to try to silence organizations that educate, organize and galvanize the grassroots.

Some leaders in our nationís history also didnít want interference from those they called "the mob." Patrick Henry disagreed. He was "of the people." Patrick Henry, George Mason, and a few others insisted that the First, Second, and other key Amendments were the very rights that would keep us free and strong. They were not afraid of the people!

Rules of Civility? Heck, as polite as he was, George Washington knew when to pick up the sword. I hope George W. Bush will follow the lead of Patrick Henry and George Washington. If he does -- if he addresses the serious character issues and the damage done to our institutions and our nationís values, then his quest should be easily won.