Skip to comments.Richard A. Viguerie: The GOP must reject Big Government
Posted on 12/29/2008 10:01:41 PM PST by neverdem
Republicans are making a huge mistake by turning away from the principle of small government.
Is it time for conservatives to give up our fight against Big Government?
Some people think so. Mike Huckabee, the Baptist preacher and former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate, complained in May to the Huffington Post that the greatest threat to the GOP is "this new brand of libertarianism" that says "look, we want to cut taxes and eliminate government." That, Huckabee said, is "not an American message. It doesn't fly. People aren't going to buy that, because that's not the way we are as a people."
And former George W. Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson, in a May column in the Washington Post, attacked small-government conservatives for believing that "no social priority is ... more urgent than balancing the budget" or that "the state's only valid purpose is to uphold markets and protect individual liberty." He argued that small-government conservatism in that form cannot succeed politically or as policy; that it would be relegated to "the realm of rejected ideologies: untainted, uncomplicated and ignored."
In the wake of the 2008 election debacle, the attack has continued.
In a column this month in the New York Times, William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard -- one of the nation's top conservative publications -- called on conservatives to come to grips with the reality of Big Government. Big Government is inevitable, Kristol suggested; we should accept it and move on. After all, he wrote, "talk of small government may be music to conservative ears, but it's not to the public as a whole."
Five Republicans have won the presidency since 1932, Kristol noted, and of those five, "only Reagan was even close to being a small-government conservative. ... And Reagan's record as governor and president wasn't..."
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
We need to articulate to the people WHY traditional conservatism is good and why it works. We have to do what schools have failed to do - educate people about basic economics and the virtues of a federal republic.
I read this in the morning on RCP.
Are you sure this wasn’t posted already?
I can’t believe that. Great piece.
That is why McCain lost, because he became nothing more then a socialist, voting yes on that bailout showed me and the rest of the Conservative Republicans out there that he was NO conservative, he was as much for bigger Government then Obama was, of course McCain was the lesser of two evils, I would have taken him anyday over the empty suit, but still, the Republican party has to go back to the Reagan roots, that is how we will prevail again
The GOP *is* big government. How can there be any doubt at this point?
I searched, but it isn't working that well.
I just searched it and nothing came up.
It’s exactly what grass root conservatives have been yelling about here.
There was a huge opposition raised against amnesty, and there was massive opposition to the bailout in the first seventy-two hours.
McCain beat his chest, got on his white horse, and rode to the country club.
He could've won a three-thousand-mile-wide standing o and the election had he been a Spartan instead of a Spender.
Abortion? Big Government has federalised what should be left to the states.
GHWB's loss? He was despised by his own party for cravenly caving after his read-my-lips stunt.
Big Union has bankrupted the Big Three who turn to the Washingtonians to fleece the hicks for another bailout.
The Washingtonians just took a $4700 raise--after having a hissy fit over the auto execs flying in on private jets--hey, Nazi Pelosi, your jet is showing.
By 2010 there will be a pitchfork mentality akin to the 1994 reaction to Clinton.
We don't look to Huckabee and Kristal to do anything to help.
We look to Sarah Palin and anybody else out there who remembers whose money it is and whose freedom should be Job One for the bloated gluttons gobbling grapes in the Senate.
The GOP ‘leadership’ will go OUT OF ITS WAY to ensure that the future of the GOP is COMPLETELY OUT OF TOUCH WITH ITS BASE and that the Rule of Law means absolutely NOTHING with regard to illegal immigration. It won’t merely hint at these things, it will relentlessly push for them.
It will push for maximum obscurity between citizens and gov’t.
Special protection groups, such as La Raza, will completely dominate Republican policy.
It will actively push for an ‘assault weapons’ ban.
No one in the GOP ‘leadership’ will EVER talk about individual responsibility.
Every member of the GOP will talk about ‘principles’ but every damn one of them will vote, over and over again, for HUGE GOVERNMENT.
Shall I go on...?
bump! bump! bump!
Republicans will find the battle much easier once all of the neo-cons have been purged from the party.
Do you really have hope of ridding the party of socialists?!? I fear the Nanny-Staters have a choke-hold on and it will be tough.
Maybe we can point out that they should just go where the other leftists are, in the Democret Party.
Rarely have I been so in line with a post as I am with this.
Too many FReepers get concerned with gamesmanship, rather than admitting that maybe a big giant chunk of Americans ARE fooled by Obama and his gang.
Huckabee. What a jerk.
The average voter isn't paying attention except to a "soundbyte", an image, and away they vote.
So, in re Mr. Viguerie's article, YES, but how many people are going to read or listen to explanations.
That's what this past election taught me. And yes, I think we need a newer strategy to more readily portray the conservative message among a "gimme" culture.
Well, after forever, the pubbies finally got control of the govt. and what did they do?
Spent my money like crazy.
The pubbies went on a spree that even the dems would be proud of.
RINO turds and stupids caused this mess the pubbies are in.
Try returning to smaller govt is best govt.
Try being conservative, not just giving lip service and b.s. to conservatives ala John McLame.
Try not kissing the asses of rino dogs like Martinez, Hagel, and so many others.
An understanding of what went wrong is vital to move forward.
When the House GOP "shut down the government", I thought the People would celebrate their release from tyranny.
I was wrong.
The small government folk must come to terms with what people want the government to do.
Surely the answer isn't "everything".
I’ll give you a bump because you are the only one on the right track.
A large part of our problem is that the media, especially Fox News, holds idiots like Kristol up as examples of what the Republican party stands for. The man's a RINO. It galls me how often he agrees with the Democrats on the various talk shows.
As long as we let the general public assume that our party believes as Kristol does we'll keep losing elections. All that leaves them to choose between at the polls is Democrat and Democrat Lite.
If we are to start winning elections we have to start advancing CONSERVATIVE people and policies.
Earth to the Huckster: Can you say "Declaration of Independence?" How about "US Constitution?" Oh, wait, sorry, I forgot that these are just some mouldy old relics--much like myself. Never mind, carry on, Huckleberry.
I am speaking of face-to-face interaction as well as making as much use as possible of websites such as You Tube. I have actually had success with the one-on-one approach with people. No badgering people, but using examples to which they can relate to their personal experiences. Why do we seem to rely on our elected officials or others to get media time to do the work. The history of conservatism is that of a grassroots movement. We need to revisit that formula.
Army Air Corps, you're right on the money again.
It’s “craft a simple, common-sense message” followed by “get the message to individuals.”
There are lots of good techniques. Setting up cognitive dissonance in people and letting them see the conflicts themselves, for example.
Conservatives should be volunteering in schools and providing free materials that are educational. They don’t have to be partisan...just getting unbiased information out there is subversive to those who want to keep the population uninformed.
Bingo. This is how we conservatives used to work. Somewhere along the line, we came to rely on individuals to get airtime with the LSM and do the work for us. I am glad to see that some do get airtime (mostly on Fox), but they can only do so much. We have so many technological tools available to us to circumvent the LSM and get the word to the people. It is up to us to roll-up the short sleeves, take some time out of our lives, and get the knowledge to people.