When Republicans have majorities they just like to spend money.
I would argue that the majority of the current crop of Republicans are either outright RINOs or moderate/centrists which are just about the same thing. If the grassroots elects real conservative Republicans at all levels (Federal, state and local) then there is a real chance for significant change. I think we're beginning to see this take place in the primaries. Okay so California wasn't a great result but the landscape is still promising.
Yes, it goes back to the Eisenhower years when the party decided to accept the New Deal reforms and just spend the money at a lesser rate. Nixon, the bete noir of the Liberals was actually a liberal spender. His cutting loose from gold set the stage of the economic events of the late ‘70s.