Skip to comments.VANITY: WHY THE GOP DOESN'T WANT TO WIN (Rush's 'Big Theory' revisited)
Posted on 10/26/2005 11:48:23 AM PDT by ovrtaxt
The GOP really doesn't want to decisively beat the Democrats. I'll explain.
Do you remember Rush Limbaugh's "BIG THEORY" back in the runup to the 2004 election? Here, refresh your memory, and let's take a look at this idea in light of the GOP's current position.
On "The Big Theory"
Rush Limbaugh, Monday, June 16, 2003. 01:10:00 (transcript)
See, the Rovian plan here, it's what "The Big Theory" is all about. The plan here is not to expand the party by expanding conservative ideas and getting people to understand them and agree with them. The plan is expand the number of Republican voters by going and getting existing Democrats and saying, "Hey, what you want, we've got. Listen to our plan, and we're in power now, and so you can be guaranteed to get what you want since we're in power." So - and Bush has a history of this going all the way back to Governor of Texas. Propose a plan and stubbornly stick with it and stick with it, and if it's opposed then compromise and go with the opponents and then claim credit for the whole thing himself. And that's what he's doing here.
Now, where does this lead? That's the whole question. Where does this lead? And I'll just put a theory out there. And you feel free to nuke it. And it's just a theory. Don't any - I don't want anybody out there assuming that I'm saying this is etched in stone. I'm just thinking out loud and sharing it with you.
This - some people - in some people's worldview this is small stuff. Prescription drugs, Medicare - small stuff - this is the stuff that you don't fight. This gets in your way. This gets you more enemies than friends; there's no way to win this stuff. Seventy-five percent of the American people want a prescription drug plan. Don't fight it; just go along with it and get them. Get them on your side because the big stuff is what you really care about.
What's the big stuff? Well, an example of the big stuff would be Supreme Court nominees, which there may be three sometime relatively soon, certainly within the next five years. And let's say that you really - when you - you're Bush - you want your nominees to be Scalia types, Clarence Thomas types - there's no way you're going to get them now. Not with the current margins. I mean, even though the Republicans run the Senate and run the House. Throw the House out when you talk about judicial nominees 'cause they don't matter. They just don't have the votes. If the Democrats are going to continue this filibuster business, and if you can't figure out a way to beat them on the filibuster, change the Senate rules or whatever, then you have to just get enough Republicans in there to get your votes and be able to have enough votes to sustain a veto of the democrats and basically say, "Screw them."
So you give up the little things like prescription drugs and the biggest spending plan in forty years, that's chump change, you give that up because the stuff that really shapes American life, the judges, the courts - that's what you want. So you go out and get enough people supporting you that when it comes time in 2004, you might get seven or eight more Senate seats on your side, getting you close to sixty Republicans, and at the same token, close to only forty Democrats. Oh, that would be huge. So you do that and you get similar numbers in the House. When you get those kinds of numbers in both chambers you can really do things. Doesn't matter what Tom Daschle is whining about everyday, at that point, because he doesn't have the numbers to stop you.
It's Not Working! by Rush Limbaugh, January 29, 2004 (rushlimbaugh.com website article)
On Thursday, I took two calls on the Bush proposal to increase the National Endowment for the Arts' budget. As part of his continuing strategy to peel off Democrat voters by growing government, Bush wants to force all of us to give the NEA $15 to $20 million in 2004. Where in the Constitution does it say the federal government will fund art? If we like it, we can fund it on our own.
I can only explain what I think is happening. I can't explain why the White House thinks their strategy is working when it's clearly not. Bush 41 didn't have a strategy, as one caller mentioned when comparing the two presidents. Bush 43 does - and I'm sad to say it's taken the shape of outspending Bill Clinton on the domestic side. This immigration bill and the $400 billion ( Now $540b ) Medicare entitlement makes conservative voters feel taken for granted.
The Big Theory, softening people's view of conservatism by making Americans work more for government and less for themselves, isn't working. How can it? If you act like a liberal to get Democrat votes, you can't do something conservative when you win without losing those new voters. Bush requested $15 billion to fight AIDS in Africa and let Ted Kennedy write an education bill that spent more on "the children" than ever, and they still rip him to shreds on those issues. You know, Republicans told us that we needed to give them control of the House, Senate and White House to get something done.
Okay, that should be enough to get us back on the mental track that existed in the pre-2004 election period. This was Rush's explanation of the macro-political landscape, the grand master plan of the GOP at a strategic, nationwide level. That was then, but this is now:
It's the second term of Bush's presidency, he cannot be reelected, and we have indeed seen one successful and favorable SCOTUS appointment. By contrast, the Harriet Miers event has revealed the limit that conservatives are willing to endure, and the ugly reality is staring us in the face. Open borders, No Child Left Behind, astronomical spending, prescription drug entitlements, the NEA budget (remember?), billions for Africa, 200 billion for New Orleans, a really sorry excuse for a Presidential Tax Reform Commission, and of course the fiasco that was the 911 Commission has built up a logjam of resentment, and now the logs are breaking loose. (And that's just a partial list.)
So here is my own "Big Theory":
In light of all that has happened, I can only surmise that the GOP really doesn't want to destroy the Democrats. This theory of peeling off the Reagan Democrats by becoming more 'Democratish' themselves might work in an election year, but it's past that time now. We held our noses because we absolutely didn't want to see Kerry win. Now that he's gone, where's the conservatism that we all expected to surface? It's now the second term. This is the time to boldly advance conservatism and put these socialist in the grave forever- but no. It seems that the GOP has gone out of it's way to prop us these creeps.
Why would they do that, you ask? The GOP knows that once the Dems are no longer a threat, an internal war will immediately ensue on the right. As surely as the Dems would be history, so would the GOP as we know it. The two party system encounters a strange phenomenon when it events evolve to this point. Every election year, principled voters complain because they are forced to compromise in the general election. Sure, they get to cast a pure vote in the primary, but eventually most hardcore conservatives are reduced to voting against the radical socialism and suicidal foreign policy of the DNC by voting for the 'compassionate' big government socialism and strong defense of the GOP. So to the degree that Democrats are reduced to a relatively small group of irrelevant activists, conservatives would be more likely to consider other options, because small government isn't the goal of the GOP, winning elections is.
The logical way for the political strategists to respond to this circumstance is plain. Maintain the Democrats as a threat. This keeps conservatives on the plantation, because pragmatism dictates that as bad as government growth is, it's not nearly as destructive as Kerry or Algore undermining the military, the security of the country AND growing the government.
This logic explains why there were no investigations of Clinton-era crimes, even the negligence that led to 911. The one event that really hasn't exploded yet is Able Danger. This scandal has the potential to destroy many careers in DC, in both parties and among active and retired military. The media is running scared, because they can't predict who will get hurt. Certainly very powerful people in the Clinton circle, and perhaps many officers still serving today. We may even see the Able Danger trail of blood lead to Bush Administration personnel. As events stand today, the Pentagon has placed gag orders on active duty officers who know the truth, and many of us are rightfully outraged. In the case of Lt. Col. Shaffer, even the destruction of a patriotic soldier's career isn't out of bounds- all to protect the powerful.
So that's my theory. To summarize, the GOP wants to keep a relatively strong DNC around as a threat. Not strong enough to win, ideally, but strong enough to scare conservatives. This arrangement solidifies and secures their position, and even if they miscalculate and lose an election or two, they can always come back to run again and probably win. But the complete marginalization of the Democrats spells an end to the GOP as well. If conservatives felt that they had nothing to lose, they would bolt the GOP for greener pastures to the right, and perhaps form a conservative party strong enough to challenge the GOP.
The two parties need each other to keep playing the game, because they are part of the same paradigm.
More along these lines: Rush Limbaugh: Washington Elite Protect Their Power (Able Danger)
Except that this one makes political sense.
Well, I think most of this is very on target. But rather than agree with his final theory, I think it is more about establishment Republican's rock solid belief in the first theory/plan of action -- the be more democratish plan. And arrogance that is unwilling to see the failure of the plan. And spinelessness has made them unable to see the time to actually act on principle. Perhaps they just have no principle anymore, just a lust for power. So there is no plan beyond the pursuit of power for power's sake.
That's pretty much my conclusion. I don't have some naive view of political parties as agents of winning ideological battles for the good of the country, just agents of winning elections. If it's viewed in that context, it's simple logic.
The problem comes when we actually believe that a party exists for anything more than that.
What do you guys think? Too cynical, or legitimate reality check?
Legitimate, in my opinion. See tagline...
Not a very good theory.
Well, the fact is that they will sit home, as they did to Bush's father in 1992. I can't believe that the GOP does not know this - they vividly remember that year. However, when it comes time for elections, and the democrat opponent clearly wants to shove things like taxes, gay marraige, and America hatred down your throat, some (not all) conservatives will come out to the polls.
Just wanted to ping you to a few thoughts I've had lately.
I also remember in 91-92 how frustrated we all were that Bush refused to go on the offensive. He just rolled over and received the beating.
We walked away and said, "I guess he really didn't want to win."
And after Newt and the revolution of 94, the Democrats filibustered and shut down the government. While conservatives cheered that they couldn't spend any of our money for a couple of days, the GOP freaked out and the conservative advance was killed. To this day, I can't figure out what's wrong with shutting down the government. Big deal!
Thats what I feel the son Bush has done all year. Sat around and refused to fight. Its a big reason he has 40% approval rating and the GOP seems to be indicted by democrat thugs everywhere.
Exactly. He had the chance to put these DNC clowns in the grave, but his 'new tone' and reaching out didn't work.
Thus, my theory- they don't really want to win, but rather to prop them up so that they don't have to fight the disintegration of the GOP when the conservatives feel safe enough to bolt to the right.
Better to dance with the devil you know, I guess.
I'm almost ready to believe it. I still believe that 41 threw the match.
I remember the 1992 election quite well. Perot, Bush, Clinton.
When Perot quit, like a bolt out of the blue, he was LEADING, in fact he was way ahead. Clinton was only getting something like 25% support in the polls, Bush was around 35%, and Perot was around 40%. He was LEADING and he quit?
So the guy LEADING, quits, says that it was because his family was threatened, and the MSM could absolutely care less.
What may have been a gigantic story, worthy of a zillion reporters, something to dwarf Watergate, or any other political story of the last century for that matter, and the media just blew it off with a, "Oh he's crazy".
Even if Perot wore a tinfoil hat in public, you would think that the media would have shown at least a little bit of curiosity about a purported banana republic-like attempt to hijack a presidental election.
Maybe it was all on the up and up, but I've always thought that there was something that didn't smell quite right about that election.
1. GHWB threw the election in 1992, almost as if he wanted Clinton to win.
- Is it possible that Bush 41 gave Clinton the presidency in return for some later favor?
2. Clinton did nothing to help Gore in 2000, almost as if he wanted GWB to win.
- Is it possible that Clinton was returning the favor from 1992?
3. Clinton did even less to help Kerry in 2004.
4. GWB has gone out of his way to "include" Clinton.
A big duty of a second term president is to keep the party strong and united for the next election (as Reagan did for Bush 41), time will tell if GWB will do this. If he doesn't, the main beneficiary will be Hitlery.
It is an absolute fact that the Bush family (financial) fortune derives from Brown Brothers Harriman banking. W. Averell Harriman was a MAJOR powerbroker and financial backer for the Democrats for decades; however, almost all of his senior executives (such as George Herbert Walker and Prescott Bush) were Republicans. It is also a fact that Harriman's widow (Pamela Harriman) was a big financial backer of Bill Clinton and played a major role in his ascension to power before the 1992 election.
A conspiracy nut would read something into this, but I am willing to just chalk it up to coincidence or perhaps the fact that "elites" just "run in the same circles" even if they are in different parties. For all of the talk of GHWB and GWB being "cowboys" who are mental "lightweights," the fact is they are "textbook" elites (wealthy New England familiy, Andover, Yale, Skull & Bones, etc.), in fact they fit the "elite" mold far better than Clinton.
Then again there may be one other very simple explanation for all of this:
There is something in the missing FBI files that has GHWB and GWB scared to death.
Thanks for that information. Stuff I surely didn't know.
I have just observed the pattern, and it seems to fit. If the GOP wanted to, they could crush the Dems permanently- but they are pulling their punches.
The media could be made irrelevant. They are going that way now, but the GOP is doing nothing to accelerate that process. Instead, they are feared.
The gun grabbers need scary gun violence stories to promote their agenda.
The NRA needs gun grabbers to pose at least the appearance of a threat in order to raise money.
Would the Republicans feel any sense of urgency if hillary! couldn't run? Doesn't the national party need the spectre of hillary! or worse running for office in order to raise money?
It's hard to convince anyone that there is an opponent if that opponent is dead or invisible.
You make some sense.
1992 didn't smell right at all. The media threw the usual gauntlet around Bush and refused to allow a single positive word to be said about him or Quayle all year. That wasn't surprising, though their success was. They cooked a small recession that was already showing rebound into a horrible depression of immense suffering. The press outright cooked the figures and lied. Then a week after the election, AP reports "Bush was right. Economy was turning around. But too late."
"Newsweek" put Clinton on the cover in a soft blue sweater that spring, with portrait drawings of him being sworn in as president for a lead article.
Perot magically appears on Larry King. He later bails because he is too strong and doesn't really want to win. The press suddenly produces polls during the Dem convention showing Clinton with thirty point leads. They are bogus.
Bush never fights. There is never a rallying cry. Then Lawrence Walsh indicts Weinberger on the Friday before the election to blunt the last puny Bush surge. The indictments are quickly dismissed, but not before they cover the last weekend election cycle.
I never thought we would lose. I was amazed to see that Arkansas hillbilly mobster and his feminazi kook wife heading for the White House. Perot knew what he was doing. He was from Texarkana. Problem was, so did Bush Senior. The white male base of the Republican party divides between Bush and Perot. Socially liberal and libertarians, plus many veterans, gravitate to the "Little General." Only the Christians and mainstreet Republicans remain, not enough at all.
I still think GHWB threw that election to his pal Billyjeff. He still plays golf and raises money with the Gomer Pyle figure that beat him. And they are rumored to have done a lot more than that.
I agree with it. Look at 'pubs that are pi**ed off at conservatives all the time. What is it they say again?? Say it with me.. DAMN YOU, YOU JUST WANT KERRY / HILLARY (insert democrat name here). A scare tactic they've been using on conservatives now when anyone questions where the GOP is going, questioning the policies of the administraion, or tired of being ignored.
Well, it's not going to work in '06. The betrayals of the GOP to the conservative base have gone unanswered long enough. Fine, if they don't need us, want us.. fine. If the "Rockerfeller Republicans" could work up the bravery to fight the left as much as they fight the conservatives, then perhaps we could get this party back on track.
As for me.. they better deliver something good soon. The amnesty plan will absolutely kill the GOP. So they better think long and hard about their next move.
I have seen sparks of life from conservatives lately. I think Miers was critical moment for us.
Thankfully, it wasn't prematurely wasted on a relatively unimportant issue. SC nominees are the entire reason I didn't leave the GOP to go farther right in 96 or 2000.
For many, Miers was the tipping point. I'd reached it a while back. But I'm glad to see it, and hope this opportunity isn't squandered. Otherwise, the GOP will be toast.
I think it will get Hillary elected..
As long as the Democrats are the opposition and a real threat to win election, conservatives have to oppose them. Leaving us to support people who are not truly conservative but are actually the lesser evil.
Are the Republicans THIS STUPID?
You make some great points and observations. Thanks for posting your thoughts.
You're welcome. It's awfully cynical to suspect this, but it sure makes sense.
Of course, things are now shaping up, with the election approaching, to confirm what I've thought all along.
Marking for later when I have time.
JJ! Good to "see" you! Hope all is well and you are settled. ;*)
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