Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The young counterculture. Joel Pollak, for one:)

As Americans face a tipping point on national debt that could cripple this country for generations, as we approach this crucial election, as we talk to our friends and relatives, here's a collection of young conservative voices to help make the case. Proud to Be Right is edited by one of my favorite conservatives, Jonah Goldberg, author of Liberal Fascism and cheerful NRO savant.

A review in the Washington Times spotlights one of these remarkable young people, Joel Pollak, now running in the 9th Congressional District of Illinois:

Most of these young writers talk about being conservative in the hostile setting of academia, but without self-pity: In each case, exposure to alternative ideas and robust political conflict only made their convictions stronger. Some of them came to their right-leaning opinions reluctantly, from improbable backgrounds and almost against their will.

Consider Joel Pollak, whose bio in the anthology describes him as "an author, speechwriter, and human rights lawyer" in addition to a Republican congressional candidate. A 1996 Ralph Nader voter, he began to question his liberalism while working in South Africa, where he saw the dangers of collectivism and the value of constitutionalism as a guarantor of individual liberty."

When I returned to the United States," Mr. Pollak writes, "I still thought of myself as a Democrat." He had been tempted to vote Republican in 2004 but had resisted the urge. Instead, he enrolled in Harvard Law School and was elected to be his section's representative to the school's Democratic campus organization. Mr. Pollak started mixing it up with Barney Frank at the Kennedy School of Government and returned home a conservative activist.

Mr. Pollak came to conservatism in part through his support for the war in Iraq. He was attracted to Arizona Sen. John McCain's presidential candidacy because the senator had been for the surge. Michael Brendan Dougherty, by contrast, writes that his opposition to war in the Balkans moved him rightward. Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, Mr. Dougherty argues, "made it sound like American armed forces constituted some kind of tricked-out lawnmower, and she was anxious to ride it across Serbia."

Pollak more than held his own in a forum yesterday, where he focused on what is at stake:

Republican Challenger Joel Pollak took on two Democrats at once--9th district incumbent Jan Schakowsky and 10th district candidate Dan Seals--at a candidate forum held at Congregation B'nai Jehoshua Beth Elohim in Deerfield yesterday evening.

Against 2-to-1 odds and a "filibuster-proof majority," Pollak joked, the Republican outsider dominated, winning over the mostly liberal audience by offering concrete solutions to Iranian nuclear ambitions, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the struggling American economy and the flawed health insurance law.

Mr. Seals was meant to share the stage with 10th district Republican candidate Robert Dold, who was unable to attend the forum due to a national television appearance. That left Joel Pollak as the sole Republican candidate for federal office at the forum.

Unfazed, Joel Pollak introduced himself to the more than 200 attendees in Hebrew and Arabic, launching into a description of the current challenges facing the United States and Israel in the Middle East in his opening presentation. Throughout the evening, Pollak spoke without notes, delivering clear messages on each of the four questions prepared by a panel of moderators.

Read on.

Conservatives around here are countercultural:)

(Ah, yes the Daily Caller review)

And usually twice as prepared. With real solutions.

Read the book. It'll give you some real hope.

And if you can, VOTE for Joel Pollak.

Related posts: Schakowsky Favors Terror Blindfold, Schakowsky Loses Big in Debate with Pollak

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