Burt Prelutsky

I know that most people, even my fellow conservatives, think I’m kidding when I say that it mystifies me that the Democrats constitute a major political party. But I’m perfectly serious. I honestly don’t know why more people vote for Democrats than for Libertarians or vegetarians, for that matter. At least I know what those people want: namely, less meddling by the federal government and more salads on the dinner table.

But Democrats merely confuse me. For instance, they didn’t seem to mind at all when President Clinton sent troops to Somalia and Kosovo, although nobody really understood what interest we had in those two places, especially when all the leading Democrats at the time were insisting that regime change was overdue in Iraq. However, once President Bush removed Saddam Hussein, these same people started carrying on as if he had taken leave of his senses. All they kept saying was that Bush had ignored the U.N., whereas it was the Democrats who had ignored eight years worth of U.N. resolutions condemning Hussein’s atrocities and his violations of the 1991 peace agreement.

Then, like a tree filled with angry parrots, they all began squawking about Bush’s lack of an exit strategy, forgetting, it seems, that Truman saw to it that Japan was still under the control of the U.S. military for several years after the end of World War II, and that we still have troops in Germany, Korea and also, by the way, in Kosovo.

Now I will frankly admit that I fully understand why certain groups favor the Democrats. The answer, of course, comes down to entitlements. Which, in a less politically correct climate, would more honestly be called bribes. The most obvious recipients these days are blacks, Muslims and illegal aliens from Latin America. These entitlements come in a myriad of ways. Just a few that come to mind are affirmative action, foot baths for Islamics paid for with taxpayer dollars -- although the liberals are forever insisting that there be no overlap of church and state -- and what is virtually an open door policy where Latinos are concerned.

It isn’t really fair to blame this entirely on Democrats when most of us realize that Republican politicians also place their re-elections ahead of America’s best interests. The difference is that whereas all Democrats are guilty of this odious form of patronization, there are still some Republicans who have to answer to conservative constituencies, and can therefore retain at least some vestige of a backbone.