Last night Mrs. P and I met JVW, Dana, and Mr. Dana to watch Liz Cheney speak at the Reagan Library, which JVW kindly arranged for us (which is fortunate because it was sold out). It was a delight to meet JVW (for the first time! which is silly given how close we live to one another) and to see Dana and her husband. The speech was worth the long drive to Simi Valley. You can watch it yourself in the comfort of your easy chair:
LIVE: Liz Cheney delivers address at Reagan Institute https://t.co/5cgoLqkQFI
— Reuters (@Reuters) June 30, 2022
If, like most people, you don’t have the patience for a 30-minute speech, here is a short excerpt:
Powerful words from @Liz_Cheney at the Reagan Presidential Library:
"The reality that we face today as Republicans, as we think about the choice in front of us, we have to choose because Republicans cannot both be loyal to Donald Trump and loyal to the constitution." pic.twitter.com/oa5BErdKqj
— The Republican Accountability Project (@AccountableGOP) June 30, 2022
I was concerned about the reception that Cheney would receive. Any time you get a mass of people from the right together, they never seem to be Liz Cheney fans. The introductory speaker said there were rumors that the event would be disrupted. But my fears were for naught. The crowd received Rep. Cheney warmly, giving her standing ovations at the beginning and the end of her remarks, and interrupting several other passages with applause, as you can see in the clip above.
In this short life of ours, we speak to each other as though doing the right thing is all that matters, and then when times get tough, most people do the easy thing instead. In War and Peace, Tolstoy describes the various factions in Russia in the early 1800s and their ideas about how the war against Napoleon should be prosecuted. After listing seven factions and describing their various opinions, Tolstoy describes the eighth group, “which in its enormous numbers was to the others as ninety-nine to one, [and] consisted of men who desired … as much advantage and pleasure for themselves as possible.”
That is human nature: to do what brings you the most pleasure and brings you the most advantage, and to make those factors the highest priority.
We talk big, but most of us stop at the talk.
Rep. Cheney walks the walk. Rep. Cheney is a true example of courage — which, like a diamond, is precious because it’s rare. She is certainly sacrificing her political career to take the stand she is taking. But she clearly believes, as I do, that by exposing Donald Trump’s attempts to steal an election that he lost fair and square, she is addressing a threat to our democracy so serious that it requires such a sacrifice.
The speech really is worth your time. Rep. Cheney is a good speaker: funny, grounded in reality, self-deprecating, and inspiring.
We left the speech and, walking to our cars, were confronted by about five Trumpist nutjobs screaming about how they hated Cheney. One guy yelled at me that I should be ashamed of myself and added: “YOU REALIZE YOU ARE IN A MINORITY IN THE REPUBLICAN PARTY!” I yelled back: “That’s why I’m not in it anymore, buddy!”
For one night, the sane were applauded, and the insane were relegated to tiny numbers standing outside yelling incoherently like street people.
It felt nice. But: reality check here . . . the crazy man yelling at me was right. Liz Cheney is going to lose her primary, because the narcissistic low-IQ clown at Mar-a-Lago is butthurt that Cheney is onto him, and the chumps in the GOP are throwing in their lot with him and not with her.
Liz Cheney can’t control what idiotic voters do. She can only control her own actions, and in that vein she is acquitting herself very well.
A great evening. Thanks to JVW for setting it up, and thanks to Dana and Mr. Dana for setting up our post-speech dinner and for driving such a long way to see it and to visit.