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Weaker by the Week ^ | October 18, 2013 | Michael Reagan

Posted on 10/18/2013 8:41:58 AM PDT by Kaslin

A lot of people are asking what the heck is wrong with the Republican Party.

What isn’t?

That’s no joke. Not for the GOP, not for the country.

The party of Ronald Reagan is getting weaker by the week.

Republican failure, Republican infighting, Republicans caving on their principles -- it’s a grim soap opera, and it’s playing out on the cable news channels every day.

How did the Republican Party ever fall to such depths?

The GOP was flying high when my father led it to victories in 1980 and 1984 on platforms built solidly -- and proudly -- on conservative principles.

So how was he so successful? It wasn’t just his conservative gospel, his communication skills or his sunny personality. My father had a man named Michael K. Deaver by his side for a long time.

When Deaver died in 2007, The Washington Post called him the “media maestro” who “shaped President Ronald Reagan's public image for 20 years, transforming American politics with his powerful gift for image-making.”

Yes, Mike Deaver was a master of media stagecraft. But he was much more. He was the public relations arm of Ronald Reagan. He understood politics, the media, and the heart and mind of my father.

Deaver was able to marry all those things for the betterment of Ronald Reagan -- and therefore the betterment of the Republican Party, conservatism and America.

You don’t see anyone like Deaver in today’s fractious Republican Party.

You don’t see anyone who understands how important it is to use the mainstream media to create the political perceptions that ultimately change the political reality.

Even though they talk about my father incessantly, Republican Party “leaders” don’t understand that it was Deaver and others, such as Lyn Nofziger, who made him a success.

They weren’t consultants to my father or the Republican Party. They were around Ronald Reagan because they were true believers in Ronald Reagan.

Right now, I don’t know if the Republican Party has anyone it can trust to lead it out of the basement. John Boehner can’t get anything done because Republicans are so fractionalized.

As we said last week, it’s been government by tantrum, but at some point that’s got to end.

This is where a Deaver or a Nofziger -- the adult supervision -- would have come in and said, “This is what needs to be said and done to save the GOP’s butt and reputation.”

So what can the Republican Party do now to show itself in a better light -- not to Republicans, not to the Tea Party, but to the nation as a whole?

The GOP is always going to be a minority party, so the only way it can win in the long run is when it’s inclusive, not exclusive.

The GOP has to come out of this Obamacare/government shutdown debacle showing itself to be more inclusive, instead of being exclusive and pushing people out, which they can no longer afford to do.

At this point the president is not leading. But neither are the Republicans. They’re fighting, but they’re not leading.

It doesn’t matter that the Republicans’ failed attempt to stop or delay Obamacare was a “good fight” for conservative principles and the long-term good of the American people.

The drawn-out, poorly thought-out fight was doomed from the start and only weakened the GOP brand further.

To genuine conservatives, the GOP has become a party of spineless losers whose core beliefs about the size, scope and legitimate activities of government are virtually interchangeable with Democrats.

Yes, Republicans need another great leader to resurrect the party of Ronald Reagan. But they also need another Michael Deaver. Otherwise, we may see the disintegration of the GOP as an important political force in the running of a government that gets bigger and nastier every day.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Government
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To: Kaslin

the GOPe who got us into the mess in the first place...

21 posted on 10/18/2013 9:53:46 AM PDT by God luvs America (63.5 million pay no income tax and vote for DemoKrats...)
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To: Democrat_media

They’re going by Hitler’s playbook with the Big Lie technique.

“His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.”

22 posted on 10/18/2013 10:26:34 AM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (I’m not a Republican, I'm a Conservative! Pubbies haven't been conservative since before T.R.)
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To: skeeter
Mike's a bit schizophrenic here. He talks about adhering to principles and then about being inclusive, not exclusive. Apparently not recognizing that the RINOs and the left accuse those conservatives who stick by their principles as not being inclusive.
The thing to understand is that the people we’re calling RINOs now were the people Reagan had to, and did, count on. The difference is that with the passage of time, and the success of Reagan internationally, there is no unifying Communist threat - even as the country is split internally by Marxists in the government. The situation is more reminiscent of the 1930s and 40s than of the 1970s and 80s.

Reagan signed on to Jack Kemp’s tax cut, the Kemp-Roth bill, and it became derided as “Reaganomics" - until, as Reagan put it, "I really, though, found out our economic plan was working when they stopped calling it Reaganomics.”

But the signal difference now is the existence of the Internet and Talk Radio, and the concomitant blatantness of the “bias in the media” - a phrase which I put in scare quotes because it is IMHO a very weak formulation. Yes, fiction dramas take a leftist slant, but there is no sane criterion by which to say that a storyteller has to tell only stories with political implications I would approve of. The problem is more properly identified as a culture of credulousness which is cultivated by journalists and by our schools. Credulousness is scarcely a new problem; Adam Smith bemoaned it in 1759:

It is acquired wisdom and experience only that teach incredulity, and they very seldom teach it enough. The wisest and most cautious of us all frequently gives credit to stories which he himself is afterwards both ashamed and astonished that he could possibly think of believing.  - Adam Smith
But the problem is made more acute with the reach of the Associated Press and the other wire services, which produce an actual conspiracy against us:
People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices. It is impossible indeed to prevent such meetings, by any law which either could be executed, or would be consistent with liberty and justice. But though the law cannot hinder people of the same trade from sometimes assembling together, it ought to do nothing to facilitate such assemblies; much less to render them necessary. - Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations (Book I, Ch 10)
The wire services are virtual meetings of all major journalistic organizations, and - after over a century and a half - the inevitable conspiracy against the public which that produces is embedded in our culture. The claim of journalistic objectivity is sophistry, and it is embedded in our culture by our schools as well as by unified propaganda from all journalists (anyone who does not promote that sophistry is “not objective).

I of course make no claims against scrupulous and diligent efforts to be objective - no more than I would rail against attempts at attaining wisdom. But the claim to actually be objective is directly analogous to the claim to actually be wise - and as the etymologies of the words “philosopher” and “sophist” show,

1542, earlier sophister (c.1380), from L. sophista, sophistes, from Gk. sophistes, from sophizesthai "to become wise or learned," from sophos "wise, clever," of unknown origin. Gk. sophistes came to mean "one who gives intellectual instruction for pay," and, contrasted with "philosopher," it became a term of contempt. Ancient sophists were famous for their clever, specious arguments.
O.E. philosophe, from L. philosophus, from Gk. philosophos "philosopher," lit. "lover of wisdom," from philos "loving" + sophos "wise, a sage."

"Pythagoras was the first who called himself philosophos, instead of sophos, 'wise man,' since this latter term was suggestive of immodesty." [Klein]

the term “sophistry” derives directly from people who used claims to actually be wise to fraudulently manipulate the public.
I claim that the claim to actually be objective is directly analogous to the claim to actually be wise on the basis that I am unable to define any distinction between the meaning of the word “objective” as the journalist uses it to suppress dissent and the meaning of the word “wise.”

23 posted on 10/19/2013 2:17:56 AM PDT by conservatism_IS_compassion (“Liberalism” is a conspiracy against the public by wire-service journalism.)
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To: don-o

The GOPe would have us believe that they will fight but have not yet concluded on the small matter of which hill it is they wish to begin on. Meanwhile hill after hill is allowed to pass by with little contention. Now we realize, too late, they had no intention of fighting on ANY hill.

24 posted on 10/19/2013 3:42:11 AM PDT by wastoute (Government cannot redistribute wealth. Government can only redistribute poverty.)
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To: Liberty Wins

Don’t worry about explaining it to the grandchildren. We most likely won’t be around by then.

25 posted on 10/19/2013 4:06:42 AM PDT by wastoute (Government cannot redistribute wealth. Government can only redistribute poverty.)
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