About AJ DiCintio
A.J. DiCintio is a Featured Writer for The New Media Journal. He first exercised his polemical skills arguing with friends on
the street corners of the working class neighborhood where he grew up.
Retired from teaching, he now applies those skills, somewhat honed and
polished by experience, to social/political affairs.
There is only this to
say about how small Colin Powell came up when he recently criticized the
Republican Party before a group of security executives:
It didn’t make us sad; it made us stupendously sad as it reminded us that
any person who is admirably large in one area of endeavor can be stunningly
minuscule in another.
Of course, this is not to say there aren’t valid criticisms to be made of
the GOP. Indeed, there are many, including demands by Main Street
Conservatives that Republican politicians quit their fixation on the notion
that "What’s good for General Motors is [always] good for the country” and
end their de facto acceptance of judicial activism as a constitutionally
sound theory of jurisprudence.
The problem with Powell, then, is not that he criticizes but that he
criticizes superficially while remaining silent on important issues of our
For example, regarding the judiciary, he hasn’t deemed it important to tell
the nation what he thinks about the call for Americans to forsake the idea
of the Constitution’s "We the People of the United States” in favor of "We
the Liberal Judicial Oligarchy of the United States and the International
Shockingly, there are a great number of other crucial issues Powell
relegates to the bottom of the Importance Scale. Here are a few:
. . . The administration’s pacifist-lite approach to "overseas contingency
. . . The administration’s support of an inquisition against those who used
"torture” to obtain information from persons alleged to have caused "man
. . . The administration’s insultingly vague plan to close the
"Stalinist-style” prison at Guantanamo.
. . . The administration’s laying a double incubus upon America, consisting
of ten trillion borrowed dollars and an astounding increase in the power
wielded by the level of government most remote from the people.
A touchy-feely Pentagon and CIA? A Pollyannaish foreign policy? Centralized
government? Rampant inflation? Stifling taxes? Depressed economic growth?
China’s decreased interest in buying American debt?
On those issues and others, Powell’s silence (like Obama’s) counsels, "Not
to worry,” and dismisses Ben Franklin’s warning, "He that lives upon hope
will die fasting,” as nothing more than pessimistic braying by a hopeless
In his defense, some may argue that Powell prefers to be a generalist about
American politics, a kind of national philosopher.
However, if that were the case, he would imitate David Brooks (NY Times),
who recently lamented that Republican leaders have not "learned the right
lessons from . . . Westerns,” films that Brooks maintains "celebrated civic
order” and thus were "really about religion, education, science, culture,
etiquette and rule of law — the pillars of community.”
If he were to enter into that kind of discussion, Powell would certainly
offer the nation his take on Brooks’ thought that there are two competing
theories of civic order:
". . . the liberal theory, in which teams of [Federal Government] experts
draw up plans to engineer order wherever problems arise.”
"And . . . the more conservative vision in which government sets certain
rules, but mostly empowers the complex web of institutions in which the
market is embedded.”
But again, only silence.
So, what does Powell deem important?
Well, after he characterized the Republican Party as being in "deep
trouble,” his stream of consciousness ran off to Rush Limbaugh, whom he
criticized as "an entertainer [who] diminishes the party and intrudes or
inserts into our public life a kind of nastiness that we would be better to
Colin Powell’s most important suggestion for creating a better America:
Switch to NPR, all ye Rush Limbaugh listeners!
That "suggestion,” however, further diminishes Mr. Powell for two reasons:
It is ridiculously shallow.
It mindlessly repeats the propaganda put out by the Obama White House,
which, according to "Politico,” used polling conducted by Democratic
strategists Stanley Greenberg and James Carville to develop a campaign to
weaken the Republican Party by characterizing "demon” Limbaugh as its face.
And thus political shill Powell continues his self-inflicted diminution in
the public eye.
. . . Because the American people expect better from a man who knows that
Rush Limbaugh is neither a Republican Party official nor a person who
dogmatically toes the official Republican Party line.
. . . Because the American people expect better from a man who claims to
worry about "nastiness [in] our public life” but whose thoughts about the
problem flow to private sector Rush Limbaugh, not to the tradition initiated
by the "trash for cash” Clinton White House War Room, headed by (surprise,
surprise) James Carville, the hateful, misogynistic political animal who to
this day is considered a giant by Democrats, if only for his contemptible
slur that suggested, "Drag a hundred dollar bill through a trailer park, you
never know what you’ll find.”
. . . Because the American people expect better from a man who is
purportedly filled with concern about political "nastiness” and ideological
purity but utters not a word about how the Clintons and Obama have
institutionalized the tactics taught by radical leftist Saul Alinsky
(previously America’s most famous "community organizer”), including Tactic
"Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”
. . . And finally, because the American people expect better from a man,
who, having been blessed with a multitude of advantages, behaves like a dupe
handing out Socialist Party leaflets to workers at an auto plant or steel
mill — which is exactly what Powell did when he lectured every dissenter to
the Obama Vision that "Americans do want to pay taxes for services . . .
Americans are looking for more government in their life, not less.”
That embarrassingly simplistic, pathetically dogmatic statement alone proves
how small Colin Powell is coming up these days.
Given the nature of his former service to his country, it is stupendously
sad to see it.