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The Fastest Fall: On the Need for the Conservatives To Get Their Game Together Soon
The Richmond [VA] Times-Dispatch ^ | October 13, 2005 | Ross Mackenzie

Posted on 10/12/2005 6:06:38 PM PDT by quidnunc

Try this for a picture:

The nation with a President whose Investor's Business Daily Leadership Index stands at 41, a 9-point plunge since August; Republicans, who during his presidency have rated him as high as 95, now rate him at only 79. Declining support for the American presence in Iraq. Deficit spending at record levels, with more to come for Katrina recovery. Gasoline at $3 per gallon, and big jitters over the prospect of winter heating bills double those of just a year ago.

-snip-

So what is it about this, perhaps the fastest fall in presidential approval?

The ideologization of the right.

For decades, a conservative ideology — a set of "correct" beliefs forming a lens through which one views reality — did not exist. The conservative movement, such as it was, contained former Communists and anti-Communists, free marketers and compassionists and private-sector welfarists; unionists (Ronald Reagan's "hardhats") and those driven by a commitment to the Taft-Hartley Law's section 14-B; Burkeans, traditionalists, libertarians, religionists, and believers in living one's life according to an individualized secular virtue; neo-con refugees from the liberal swamp.

The conservative umbrella kept the rain off all these disparates; the conservative tent had room for just about anyone.

Conservatives took over the Republican Party and drove it to political power. On their way to consolidating power, two things happened. (1) They demonstrated time and again that they were not particularly good at government — that in many ways they don't do the governing thing well, often not so well as liberal Democrats. (2) They coalesced around a set of views and values one generally had to embrace in order to have one's claim of allegiance to the conservative flag accepted.

-snip-

(Excerpt) Read more at timesdispatch.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: conservatives; mackenzie; miers
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Conservatives had better learn — and learn damn fast — that unless a party can gain political party and hold on to it, no amount of ideological purity will be much more significant than breaking wind in a cyclone.

Just as conservatism evolved away from the isolationist, business-versus-labor model — leaving Pat Buchanan and his ilk floundering about in the political wilderness like beached whales — so too is conservatism evolving apace away from the small-government, libertarian model so dear to the hearts of Rush Limbaugh and his acolytes.

Bush has recognized this and has parlayed it into two presidential terms.

However, if movement conservatives start an ideological war withing the GOP, everything which Ronald Reagan and those who believe as he did accomplished is in danger of being wrecked.

The my-way-or-the-highway conservatives are fast becoming the mirror images of the lunatic-fringe Democrats from moveon.org.

If the GOP is driven to the right, the Reagan Democrats who are socially conservative but fiscally liberal will be alienated and will rejoin the Democrats.

This is the reason Bill Clinton was elected twice.

1 posted on 10/12/2005 6:06:39 PM PDT by quidnunc
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To: quidnunc

The GOP better get THEIR act together.


2 posted on 10/12/2005 6:09:02 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Never a minigun handy when you need one.)
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To: quidnunc
And people forget just how genuinely crappy life was at the end of the BJ Clintoon administration.
3 posted on 10/12/2005 6:09:02 PM PDT by xcamel (No more RINOS - Not Now, Not Ever Again.)
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To: quidnunc
Just as conservatism evolved away from the isolationist, business-versus-labor model — leaving Pat Buchanan and his ilk floundering about in the political wilderness like beached whales — so too is conservatism evolving apace away from the small-government, libertarian model so dear to the hearts of Rush Limbaugh and his acolytes. Bush has recognized this and has parlayed it into two presidential terms. However, if movement conservatives start an ideological war withing the GOP, everything which Ronald Reagan and those who believe as he did accomplished is in danger of being wrecked. The my-way-or-the-highway conservatives are fast becoming the mirror images of the lunatic-fringe Democrats from moveon.org.

BTTT...

4 posted on 10/12/2005 6:10:46 PM PDT by veronica ("clowns clones clowns/ it's raining clowns/snarling FR obsessed clones/ claws bared clowns"...)
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To: quidnunc

So all it takes to stay in power is to rally behind a cause inimical to our best interests?

If I wanted that I'd be a Democrat.


5 posted on 10/12/2005 6:12:20 PM PDT by thoughtomator (Bush's judicial philosophy - Aliens' rights > your rights)
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To: quidnunc
Pragmatic Conservatism Is The Only Way for a Long Lasting Conservative Majority.
6 posted on 10/12/2005 6:14:05 PM PDT by jveritas (The Axis of Defeatism: Left wing liberals, Buchananites, and third party voters.)
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To: quidnunc

For what it's worth, conservatives didn't start this food fight. Bush did.

I have supported Bush for five years, in spite of his sometimes doing things I don't like. But as I've said before, judicial appointments are the bottom line. A lot of other conservatives feel the same way.

Bush has done this to himself. There still may be time to pull his ratings and his reputation back up, and he has certainly shown himself capable of recovering before. He can be a fighter, but I hope he decides to fight his enemies instead of his friends. I hope he takes a good hard look at this whole business and finds a graceful way to back out of it and start over.


7 posted on 10/12/2005 6:14:30 PM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: xcamel

I remember but I haven't seen anyone to vote for. The only interesting one, has his hands full with a pit bull DA right now.


8 posted on 10/12/2005 6:14:43 PM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: quidnunc

So, do you think your comments promote unity or drive people away?


9 posted on 10/12/2005 6:14:45 PM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (The sacrifices of God are a broken and contrite heart. Ps. 51:17)
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To: thoughtomator
So all it takes to stay in power is to rally behind a cause inimical to our best interests?

If I wanted that I'd be a Democrat.

BUMP!

To some, it is "ideologization"...
To others, it's called "integrity"...

10 posted on 10/12/2005 6:15:57 PM PDT by Gondring (I'll give up my right to die when hell freezes over my dead body!)
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To: thoughtomator
Just remember, the interest of the individual is secondary to the interests of the party comrade.
11 posted on 10/12/2005 6:15:58 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Never a minigun handy when you need one.)
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To: jveritas
Pragmatic Conservatism Is The Only Way for a Long Lasting Conservative Majority.

But is that Conservatism? At what point is "pragmatic" actually "selling out"? And who cares about a majority if you don't get what you want anyway?

12 posted on 10/12/2005 6:17:26 PM PDT by Gondring (I'll give up my right to die when hell freezes over my dead body!)
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To: quidnunc
Just as conservatism evolved away from the isolationist, business-versus-labor model — leaving Pat Buchanan and his ilk floundering about in the political wilderness like beached whales — so too is conservatism evolving apace away from the small-government, libertarian model so dear to the hearts of Rush Limbaugh and his acolytes.

Do you think the evolution away from small government by conservatives is a good thing?

13 posted on 10/12/2005 6:17:29 PM PDT by ModelBreaker
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To: quidnunc

Let me see if I got this straight.

"First the GOP gets rid of the isolationist non-free-traitors. Then it shakes loose that pesky small-government, libertarian wing. Ideological purity? That's just silly talk. Dig up the corrupt Jay Hanna GOP of the Gilded Age, that's WAAAAAY better than trying to get elected based on a platform. Screw these people who want a party philosophy...we run to put our people in power, the only principle is WIN!"

I'm aghast at how fast you people want what had yet been a party of principle to race to join the Democrat whoring. And you think...somehow...it's VIRTUOUS to do so. Who are you, and why do you call yourself conservative, anyway?


14 posted on 10/12/2005 6:17:42 PM PDT by LibertarianInExile (Kelo, Grutter, Raich and Roe-all them gotta go. Pick Judge JRB! She'll nuke `em 'til they glow!)
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To: thoughtomator
thoughtomator wrote: So all it takes to stay in power is to rally behind a cause inimical to our best interests? If I wanted that I'd be a Democrat.

No, it means that in order to be a successful politician you have to walk the line between a lot of competing interests, and it's usually not possible to eget everything you want.

So the choice is between compromising ibn such a way as to advance your agenda a little at a time, or howling the cant of your pure ideology in the political wilderness while the othere guy advances HIS agenda.

15 posted on 10/12/2005 6:19:34 PM PDT by quidnunc (Omnis Gaul delenda est)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past
If the ultra conservative ideologists want to leave so be it. It happened before when the Buchananite wing of the Republican party left or was kicked out, and since then the GOP has won the Congress and state governorship since 1994 then the White House in 2000 and 2004.
16 posted on 10/12/2005 6:21:17 PM PDT by jveritas (The Axis of Defeatism: Left wing liberals, Buchananites, and third party voters.)
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To: CindyDawg
Pit Bull, no, can of stinky old bull sh!t, yes.

"Supporting Bush is like having your cake and eating it too. The cost is many extra hours on the stairmaster, not running away like a confounded dim."

17 posted on 10/12/2005 6:21:53 PM PDT by xcamel (No more RINOS - Not Now, Not Ever Again.)
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To: quidnunc
...compromising ibn such a way as to advance your agenda a little at a time...

But that's not what's happening... What's happening is "compromising in such a way as to retreat our agenda a little at a time"...

18 posted on 10/12/2005 6:22:02 PM PDT by Gondring (I'll give up my right to die when hell freezes over my dead body!)
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To: quidnunc

The GOP better get their act together and start acting like Republicans. Where is the smaller government? Even Bill Clinton won by declaring the era of big government is over. The GOP should impliment that popular sentiment if they really want to win.


19 posted on 10/12/2005 6:22:25 PM PDT by Always Right
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To: Cicero
Cicero wrote: But as I've said before, judicial appointments are the bottom line.

And you have no concrete evidence thus far that you have been betrayed on this point.

20 posted on 10/12/2005 6:22:25 PM PDT by quidnunc (Omnis Gaul delenda est)
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