The Republican Party Is Doomed
And They Should Party Like It’s 1964
It’s pretty clear that, baring the unexpected event that we should all expect, Sen. John McCain is going to be our next president. He’s a good man and won’t lead the country to disaster. It’s too bad that he’s not a Republican, philosophically, and barely recognizable as a conservative except on some secondary issues, because it’s only his decency that will keep this country from the economic ruin that comes with the socialism we’ll see otherwise.
The House and Senate are going to be overwhelmingly Democrat come January 2009. The electoral hit facing the Republicans resembles 1964, without a Bill Buckley or Barry Goldwater or Ronald Reagan to stir the ashes looking for a phoenix.
Soul searching Republicans are turning to an unlikely savior, one-time party heretic and now presumptive White House nominee John McCain, as they try to stave off an electoral disaster.
Stung by the Democratic seizure of three staunch conservative seats in Congress, Republican lawmakers fear a shellacking in November’s general election, after losing control of both chambers of Congress in 2006.
It’s not that Congress won’t be conservative, or liberal, philosophically speaking, so much as devoutly corrupt and morally bankrupt, and I say this with complete confidence because of examples like the bi-partisan support of the farm bill.
Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer released a statement saying the vote “sends the wrong message to the rest of the country who are not experiencing the boom of the agriculture sector,” and, “This bill is loaded with taxpayer funded pet projects at a time when Americans are struggling to buy groceries and afford gas to get to work.”
Bush has charged that the bill allows payments to wealthy individuals. He has also criticized restrictions on the use of food aid dollars in the midst of food shortages abroad, and he said that protectionist provisions, including “an egregious new sugar subsidy program,” could worsen trade relations.
Ghack! This is a conundrum for me, because I’ve seen myself as a moderate. I support immigration in amounts that represent world record numbers of immigrants, but not wide open borders. I support law enforcement and civil decency, but not the death penalty or a “state security apparatus” that spies on its (legal!) citizens and stifles business as much as Sarbanes-Oxley and ITAR do. I support free speech rights and the right to bear arms and don’t you dare to burn the flag. Both political parties have jettisoned their (extreme) bases to move to a center where I should be comfortable, but the center now consists of a mushy, idea-free zone where deals are construed as compromise and no politician has the courage of his convictions. It can’t be my political home, because it runs no predicable (or controllable) course – only the expedient one.
If moderate Democrats and moderate Republicans were to break away and form their own political party tomorrow, I could not join them when they offer us the health care plan of Hillary Clinton, the Amnesty for illegal aliens plan of John McCain, and handouts for those who default on mortgages (“Thanks, Pres. Bush – signed J.Q. Taxpayer”), and nonsense like this farm bill.
Price supports make some sense for food security when prices are low, but that’s hardly the case now. Thanks in large part to subsidies for ethanol production, food prices have skyrocketed over the last few years. The market distortion has created hunger worldwide while robbing American taxpayers. Thanks to subsidies, Americans pay twice for foolish policy – once with the IRS, and a second time at the store with higher food prices.
Indeed, I can find no solutions being offered from the center worth the name, not on The War or Terror, the mortgage crisis, the (growing) education or health care crises… Energy? We haven’t built nuclear power plants or increased fleet gas mileage for the last 30 years, the ultimate in middle of the road, politically compromised failure.
It’s okay, the republic will stand and we will survive. But I really don’t expect the Republicans to.