Conservative Confusion: A Time to Reassess
Saturday, November 10, 2012
“In the end, more than freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life, and they lost it all – security, comfort, and freedom. When the Athenians finally wanted not to give to society but for society to give to them, when the freedom they wished for most was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free and was never free again.” – Edward Gibbon, Historian
Similar to the aftermath of any emotional defeat, there is much confusion surfacing within the American Right after last Tuesday’s elections.
Barack Obama received about 8 million fewer votes than he did in 2008. That’s good. That’s a positive. And it was expected.
The shock of 2012 came when Mitt Romney earned almost 2 million votes less than John McCain – an awkward, aging, and unattractive candidate during a time that was marked by public exhaustion with war and the face of the Republican Party – George W. Bush.
But in 2010 the entire nation seemed to roundly reject the hard-left policies of President Obama, Harry Reid, and San Francisco’s Nancy Pelosi. A national uprising known as the “Tea Party” began to advance principled conservatism, saying “enough is enough” when it came to big-government bailouts, public debt, and the socialist creep.
Just two years after the election of Barack Obama the nation seemed to have acknowledged its mistake, and with haste gave Republicans – including dozens of Tea Party Republicans – overwhelming control of the House of Representatives. This marked the largest seat change in the House of Representatives since 1948 and the largest seat change for a midterm election since 1938.
So what happened last Tuesday? Where was the Republican turnout that we were expecting? Where was the fury of four years that was supposed to show up to the polls?
The pummeling that Republicans took in Rhode Island was anything but surprising. After all, this is the place where Democratic lies feel most familiar. This is the place where people are most apt to nod their heads in agreement with the myths of union uprightness and corporate cruelty. Under the direction of Democrats and organized labor for decades, Rhode Island famously resides in the economic basement. But, somehow, the average Rhode Islander blames his state’s condition on George W. Bush.
It seems to hardly matter how astutely Republican candidates campaign on the principles of free markets and fiscal responsibility. In Rhode Island, lofty and moral ideals have nothing against the Democrats’ charge that Social Security and Medicare are threatened under Republican governance. In addition to the advantage that is the unions’ political machine, Rhode Island is culturally Marxist – its people taught to hate the rich, clamor for their neighbors’ wealth, and perceive themselves as victims of other people’s success.
Rhode Island could end up as the first state to illustrate the fact that, once a society decides to degenerate itself to human base, democracy will not be a saving grace. The people will vote for tyranny all by themselves.
A Culture in Decline
But much of the nation seemed to have woken up once they found out what Barack Obama meant by “change” in 2008. So, again, why didn’t more Americans show up in 2012 to – once again – vote against the Rhode Island and European direction?
About 70 percent of Hispanic voters broke for Obama. Are Hispanics becoming more and more convinced by the charges of racism that are leveled against the Republican Party, an onslaught that never seems to end? Are Hispanics choosing the same path that African-Americans chose decades ago?
If so, Hispanics, good luck with that.
Did millions of American females really buy into a mythical “war on women” being waged by the GOP? Were a couple of inarticulate remarks regarding rape enough to verify this false accusation?
Or was it the Democrats’ biggest lie of all, that George Bush’s policies – tax cuts in particular – are what “got us into this mess in the first place,” and that Obama and the Democrats did all anyone could do to lead the nation through the “greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression”?
Were enough people actually convinced of Mitt Romney’s inherent cruelty that comes along with massive personal wealth? Millions of Americans fell for the argument that Romney is “out of touch” due to his individual success? Were people actually influenced by the class envy of the Occupy Movement, convinced that an entity called “the one percent” was posing a danger to something called “the ninety-nine percent”?
I submit that the answer to all these questions is “yes.” Intellectual dishonesty and the politics of emotion are powerful tools of the Democratic Party. And they are seconded and buttressed by a media that will always be in the corner of the political Left, making it nearly impossible to obliterate such nonsense and shame Democrats into telling the truth.
Months ago Jay Leno illustrated the power of the left-wing media haze when he explained to Dennis Miller that Obama seemed to have “compassion for regular people” while “the Republican Party [has] this sort of war on women.” And national exit polls on Tuesday reported that Obama had “a 10-point lead over Romney on the question of which candidate is more in touch with people like them.”
We have seen it coming for a long time, the dumbing down of America. In large measure, we are now people who are obsessed with who is nice, rather than who is right. We are children.
Give Republicans credit for trying to have an adult conversation, doing their utmost to warn of economic collapse and a looming debt crisis, and to speak of limited government, states’ rights, and the US Constitution. They attempted to illustrate how liberty is the best economic policy for the average American – not food stamps or artificial stimulus.
But it seems to be no match when up against a morally filthy nation whose people have adopted a less dignified culture, and have finally rejected their original religion.
The Right Stays Home
There are, of course, other factors to consider when deciphering how Republicans found themselves on the losing end of Tuesday’s elections. First of all, defeating an incumbent president is an extremely difficult political feat.
Furthermore, from the beginning Mitt Romney was an unsatisfactory candidate to millions of conservatives. Despite the Romney Campaign’s offering of a pretty acceptable conservative vision that contrasted well with the Democrats’ socialism, Newt Gingrich had tagged Romney as the “Massachusetts moderate” months ago during the Republican primary. That hurt.
No doubt, libertarians and some principled Tea Partiers sat this one out – adding to Romney’s disadvantage.
But still, what the hell? How in the world did Mitt Romney fail to secure as many votes as John McCain? I repeat: Conservatives and Republicans are confused right now.
The Democratic Party did not receive the message to purify itself of its collectivist partners. Two resounding election defeats in a row for Democrats would have gone a long way in convincing them to abandon their fascist style of governance. Instead, the American electorate showed itself to be very much unconcerned with it.
This writer remains extremely worried as well. While I realize that conservatives largely outnumber liberals in this country, and that the Democrats’ electoral success is very often due to a radical willingness to lie while harnessing the media’s complicity and collusion, it is still my regretful hunch that once an individual like Sandra Fluke is able to make sense to millions of Americans, this nation just may have passed the point of no return.
We are now a country that considers it to be moral and worthy to force people to pay for other people’s contraception. What is left to say?
As Democrats continue to transform America more and more into a democracy – and less of a free republic – it is time to consider the words of John Adams: “Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.”
Does the Tea Party uprising still represent the rebirth of the American Experiment? Or was the patriot movement of 2009 and 2010 a mere blip on the screen?
I join millions of conservatives who are suddenly unsure if they are part of a hopeful revolution, or part of a futile resistance.
We are in the process of reassessing everything.
Travis Rowley (TravisRowley.com) is the chairman of the RI Young Republicans and author of The RI Republican: An Indictment of the Rhode Island Left.
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