As a youth, I saw a movie on television telling the tale of the Alamo. How Davy Crockett, Sam Houston, and William Travis had bravely fought, and sacrificed their lives in the Texas Revolution. Years later, I saw a second version of the Movie, with none other than John Wayne playing the role of Davy Crockett. The story though, ended the same way. A few years ago, Billy Bob Thornton reprized the role of Crockett, a must see by the way, and in the end, succumbed to an overwhelming force led by Santa Anna. That's exactly where we are with this year's Republican Primary. We've seen this movie before, and keep hoping that this time it won't end the same way. We all know it will. That fact, and not the petty bickering is what is making the base so mad.
Once again, we are getting the moderate candidate shoved down our throats. Once again, we are told that only the moderate has the ability to actually win an election. While the vast majority of the Republican base is peopled by Conservatives, the party establishment is made up of people lacking any real core beliefs. It is not just the Republicans, but the Democrats also who are guilty of this. For those fine folks, politics is about gaining the power and keeping the power. For those of us who vote, it is about matching our votes with what we believe in. They don't trust us to vote them more power, and we don't trust them to govern according to their rhetoric. In this ridiculous play which we see every four years, we are all of us duped entirely anew. Later it seems will be the time for us to get behind a candidate who actually reflects our values and beliefs. This year however, we need to get behind some who can appeal to the 20% of the voting populace with no discernible belief system, other than which candidate has promised them the most free goodies from the public largess.
The question must one day be raised, what does the Republican Party actually stand for. Those of us in the base believe that it stands for a smaller and more accountable government, a return to the free market principles complete with private property rights, a separation of powers belonging to a government constrained in its ability to wield those powers by an electorate who must constantly give its consent to be governed. Somehow, in every election of late, we have a choice between a big government Democrat, and a big government Republican. Oh sure, the big government Republican is very adept at telling us that they in fact oppose big government, but let's face facts, they invariably let us down, and give us lofty speeches about how we want them to come together to find common ground with their political adversaries.
So, what kind of track record do the Party apparatchiks actually have? Barry Goldwater is the reason why the Party bosses have turned on the conservatives of the party. So, we'll start with 1968. Richard Nixon won in 68, in what was a much closer election than it should have ever have been. The economics of Johnson's full term were terrible. How could they have been anything else? They are much of the same things being employed today, and the great society wreaked havoc upon American urban areas that we had not before seen in our country. Even with that, Richard Nixon lost the popular vote but won in the electoral system that we employ. 4 years later of course, he won reelection, but he defeated a man who was even further to the left of where Barack Obama is today. In 1976, we tossed the conservative Reagan aside, and we instead went with Gerald Ford. Ford lost, but that may very well have been more to the stench of Watergate than Ford's politics. In 1980, we were all assured by the establishment that Ronald Reagan could not win against an incumbent President. He would in no way be accepted by the middle 20%. Jon Anderson even sought the nomination as the liberal Republican, and when he lost the nomination battle, left and ran as a third party candidate. Even with someone siphoning votes off from our side, Reagan won in the greatest landslide to that date in history. In 1984, the supposedly unelectable conservative won in another landslide, even greater than his last. Reagan's Vice President, Bush 41 won election as a liberal Republican in 1988, but I believe that he rode in mostly on the Reagan coat tails. 4 years later, he was fired from his office. Dole was next, and this version of the moderate Republican was defeated. He blamed his defeat on Newt Gingrich, and did so even though Gingrich's name did not appear on the Presidential ballot. Bush 43, won both of his elections, scoring two victories for the liberal wing of the party, but his legacy was anything but solid. There are many who believe that it was his unwillingness to stand up for conservatism and to defend our values which led to an Obama victory in 2008. In any case, the argument that only a moderate can win elections is a specious argument at best. There is no actual evidence to support that.
I believe that our positions that we hold dear, if stated with passion and clarity, will win elections. There is evidence to support that. The victories of Reagan in 1980 and 1984, coupled with the midterms of 1994 and 2010 have shown that a clear concise vision of conservatism will win and win handily when ever it is tried. Much has been said recently about the slap fighting taking place in the Republican primary. What I would like to see is more speechifying like this.
compare that message to the one being delivered by Mitt Romney. He is promising the same socialized healthcare scheme as the one we all want repealed, with the only difference being that he wants to see 50 individual s... In the end of course, it would be the same result for us, tethered to a health care law that is the opposite of everything we as a nation believe in. So, I ask this question, how exactly would a President Romney be any different than a President Obama? Why should I, as a base Republican voter get behind a guy who is willing to preside over America's decay, simply because he would manage that decay better? Newt Gingrich can win in November, and in fact I would even argue that he stands a much better chance of doing so.
The message delivered above is an optimistic view of the greatness of this nation, and what we are capable of when governments get out of our way and indeed follow our lead. That conservative view is what wins elections in this country. It did so in 1980, and in 1984. It will do so in 2012. See below for the Romney message. It is more of the same, with a, "no really, I'm a conservative," thrown in as an afterthought. Exit question: Has Mitt Romney even bothered to address a Tea Party group anywhere in the United States yet?
Hat tip to eaglesoars