The New Conservatism
It's The Same As The Old Conservatism
by Jeffrey Carter
The Republican Party is in flux. It’s a tough time to be in flux, because the Democrats are even more in flux and at their weakest point in American history. If the Republicans play their cards right, they could create a situation where their policies will rule for at least a generation.
If you remember your history, you will know that Ronald Reagan was once a Democrat. When he became a Republican, he said the “Democratic Party left me”.
I think the same split is happening inside the Republican Party.
Those of us that embrace conservative values call the part of the party that has left us GOPe. You might also call them, “Beltway Republicans”. Lisa Murkowski, Lindsey Graham, Mitt Romney, George Bush, and people like them would be categorized as “Beltway Republicans”. They are for big government, and big government solutions to problems.
I read this article about Dwight Eisenhower this morning and it got me thinking. In the rearview mirror, Eisenhower becomes smarter every day. In his day, the press said he was dumb compared to Adlai Stevenson. But, Stevenson looks like a mental midget compared to Ike. He was more than prophetic about the “military-industrial complex” which Democrats like to latch on to when they want to decrease military spending. Ike knew that government money corrupts. He said,
The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded…Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite
Interestingly, Winston Churchill also worried about similar. Churchill had a valid concern that our reliance on science would infringe upon our personal liberty. We are seeing that play out in real-time worldwide today.
This brings me to what conservatism has always been and always will be. It’s more than just being pro-life. Conservatives are pro-life but that’s not the core part of the conservative belief.
The core thrust is self-determination. It’s not having government in your way or stomping on your neck. It’s the ability to freely negotiate your life, build a business if you want, and have personal choice along with the responsibility that comes with those choices.
I think Trump got that and the Beltway rebelled. Trump was in construction and running resorts and hotels. When you are in that business, you deal with lots of independent contractors. He truly could connect with them and understood what motivates them. Beltway people don’t get them. They are uncomfortable around them. They don’t understand their jokes and they don’t understand what motivates them.
This is the true split in the Republican Party and Democrat elites are so out of touch that they can’t begin to see it.
So, how do they seize the opportunity?
Today, there is little alternative to just tearing everything down to its foundation. Conservatives know the bureaucracy is too big. They know that the military has been corrupted by officers that don’t value the Constitution. They know where the battle lines are in Congress.
They also know private institutions like local civic clubs have been corrupted by wokeness. They stopped participating. They stopped listening to them despite the mouthpiece afforded those civic institutions by the media. They don’t need those things to survive or thrive.
People in elected office that are on the Republican side that don’t understand this need to go. They need to step aside. There can be no negotiation with an opposing party that has a goal of socialism/communism. It’s a war. If you aren’t willing to fight, or you want to play the grift, you can’t be a soldier in the battle.
One thing George C. Marshall did before WW2 broke out was to get rid of all the top generals and install a much younger cadre of generals. He knew the old guard wasn’t up to the task. I think for much of the Republican Party, that is true today. They talk the talk, but they cannot walk the walk.
The next Republican presidential candidate needs to clearly articulate those values. Trump did in a very bullying and aggressive way. Christ had John the Baptist pave the way for him and that could be what Trump did for the next wave of Conservative leaders.