We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Sunday, July 24. 2016
In the US, I mean. An astute reader commented here yesterday:
A pure Conservative, as I see it, would run on issues like this: Handcuffing the Administrate State, privatizing Social Security, eliminating the federal Department of Education and HUD, abolishing government unions, and lots of other things along those lines. Well that's just my opinion. (Related, Trump as a transitional figure).
Today's Survey question: Could a pure Conservative, somehow defined, with a cheerful and winning personality win a national election today?
I say, regretfully, No.
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
No is the answer. Too many carve-outs in every direction. The IRS code is specifically written to shield this or that and make the un-connected pay.
The trick is, and Trump has hinted at it; we're broke... and in debt. Trump could slash stuff or handcuff just because he needs to build up the military again AND get out of debt. It will be interesting to see if he goes that way.
So shuttering the Education department to save money instead of ideology. Winner! heh.
NO TRUE CONSERVATIVE COULD WIN NATIONALLY!
The Proggies have simply given away and promise to continue to give away too much Sh*t!
Five things could aid in turning things around: 1) you're eligible to vote only if you pay income taxes; 2) the income tax is no longer automatically deducted from pay, but paid directly by a taxpayer to the Feds; 3) Balanced budget amendment; 4) term limits of 12 years on elected officials and judges (except 8 for POTUS); and 5) flat tax on consumption.
I'd have thought anyone with a pulse could beat Obama for a second term, so I'm pessimistic.
I agree it is impossible for a try conservative to be elected nationally. To my thinking, a "true conservative" must first, and foremost, be a constitutionalist.
We've reached the point where few people younger than approx. 40 know much at all about the constitution and what they know they don't like. We have open contempt for the constitution throughout the political spectrum.
Second, a true conservative must love the United States and its history despite our imperfections. A conservative is not an idealist who cannot get past imperfections to recognize the overwhelming good this nation has achieved and represents. The leftists have all but completed The Long March Through The Institutions. Unabashed and unbridled hatred of our nation is rampant among our fellow citizens, especially those within the power structure. As I was watching newscasts about the slaughter in Nice I was amazed at the undisguised contempt for nationalism. The terms "fascist" and "nationalist" are not interchangeable to our elite. There is nothing, in their minds, that any person can possible cherish and wish to protect and preserve about the nation they have been born and raised in. The elites don't only hate the US, they hate the very notion of nations. They prefer vast empires I suppose.
Third, our government is now weaponized against the citizenry, in particular any portion of it that is not leftist. Too many people in federal, state, and local governments will do everything possible to subvert and punish those of us who would support a true conservative for national leadership. And that includes election fraud. Even if a true conservative could get the votes the votes would not be counted.
And last, but probably not least, the MSM remains quite adept at creating "common knowledge". And it will be common knowledge that any true conservative is nothing more than fascist scum and their opponent a wonderful and brilliant person.
YEESH! "now interchangeable" rather than "not interchangeable". Proofreading is my friend. Shame I don't pay any attention to it.
No. With the full propaganda arm of the media, including the motion picture industry, and sadly K through college, a rock ribbed conservative doesn't stand a chance. Heck, just passing muster with the National Review crowd would doom most candidates'. The left has fully infiltrated every branch of government. As Obama has shown, and Hillary will surely use, these attack dogs of various agencies, will come and destroy anyone speaking out; threatening their power. Unfortunately for all that value self governance, Trump is our last - electable - hope.
No, when the Clintons can raise trillions worldwide to influence how taxpayer money and fiat dollars leading to the taxpayers' debt level while the media, Congress and our entire judicial system look the other way, we are doomed. We are in an oligarchy run by a philandering man-child from Arkansas and his criminal wife.
Watch "Clinton Cash" at Breitbart.com (until 5 pm ET, then again between 8 - 11 pm ET today) or on You Tube. Or, read the book.
Only if we stop this activity and punish those who make fools of us by trading favors for HUGE bucks, can we survive as a Constitutional Republic.
No. It's just not the nature of groups of voters to move easily between one pole to its opposite. Most people are not ideologues; they're somewhere in between. Think bell curve.
No! Even of course not. There are to many Oxen to be gored. Everyone gets some free stuff or personal interest funded, from welfare of all sorts, to medicare, to home interest deductions, ad nauseaum. Self interest (t)rumps pure conservatism always.
And you'd not like the result anyway.
Every road a toll road, you'd have to pay $10 or more to get to the next town over because the owners of the roads charge you for every meter you drive.
No more subsidised education and healthcare. The true cost becomes visible and bills explode. After the costs end up cut due to reduced red tape, the bills go up even more because the last restrictions on lawyers to sue everyone left and right disappear as well, and juries will have a field day without any restrictions on their own power to ensure that they can get rich from a similar scheme if only they declare for the claimant.
Private police doing a little side show of running protection rackets with nobody to stop them. "It'd be so sad if something were to happen to that nice car of yours you've parked in this precinct, for $20 a week we'll keep an eye on it".
Private social security? Think slavery. Lose your job and be forced to work for bread and bedding at some work project making the company paying you that a lot of profit.
No thank you. I'd rather have a nice mix of fiscal responsibility and a limited government that does take care of keeping the country working and those in need from starving (that's not to say there's a lot of cutting that needs to be done in the powers of government agencies and that social security programs overall are often way too generous).
I question your definition of a true conservative. What you describe is more of the true Libertarian problem. Conservatives understand what is, actually, the proper use of Government and don't reject it outright.
Agreed! What (it seems to me) JTW is describing is Purist Libertarianism. That is not at all the same thing as "conservatism". Purist libertarians are, as far as I can figure out, Optimistic Anarchists.
Government absolutely serves a purpose. Unfortunately We The People always allow that purpose to morph into something other than the interests of We The People.
I merely follow the definition our Bannister uses to the logical conclusion...
Of course a conservative could win. Look at large majorities of
Governors, State legislatures, House and Senate majorities all
because of large R turnout. Uninspiring candidates like Bush,
mush Mccain, or mittens Romney do not reflect actual voters
desires. Trump is right when he says Romney lost a very winnable election. Trump is no conservative but he will win in big
fashion against a terrible opponent just by standing for simple
ideas conservatives should be for like law and order, immigration,
and terrorism. Any conservative with their finger on the pulse
could get elected likewise.
It's kinda like my garden... I had some beautiful stuff going for maybe 10 years, but the violets keep seeding, and are EVERYWHERE. The daylilies and iris, which looked so pretty last summer, seem to have doubled and are ALL OVER THE PLACE and I think I'm going to lose some roses this year unless I get digging soon. I want the pleasant and orderly garden I used to have, but it's going to be a fight.
I'm not getting any younger, either, and it's more of a job now than it was years ago....Sigh!
No. It's just nostalgia that keeps people thinking that another Reagan would be able to turn back the clock.
As they say, anything that can't continue forever, won't. The huge federal apparatus is still grinding forward with the momentum of the New Deal and the Great Society, but technology has taken us into a new century with new dynamics (and new voter psychology), even though most of us don't yet recognize it.
I expect a pretty major crack-up at some point, with power devolving to regional control, perhaps even the break-up of the Union. More likely is a re-assertion of city/state/regional power over tax revenues, a greater discrepancy among regions, and a reduced role for the federal government.
An articulate conservative who could explain conservative principles to the voters in an easy to understand way, would easily be elected. Most people are conservative/libertarian. They just don't know it because they've never had the fundamental conservative/libertarian ideas presented to them.
I agree a true conservative couldn't win today. Even in an honest presidential election, which we haven't had in over 100 years I don't think a true conservative could win. But just a few hours ago a Syrian refugee killed a woman in Germany with a machette. I commented to my wife; "how much longer will the Germans stand for this. Then I read your post. So the answer is just as I have said until... The next 9/11. And make no mistake there will be one. I don't mean 5 people or 50 people shot or even a truck driven into a crowd. I mean something big. We all know that they want to do it. If they get the means or the weapon they will do it. What will America do the day after they nuke New York City or Washington DC? When will we in the West wake up to the fact that we are at war and they intend to kill us? On that day a true conservative could win by a landslide. After all who would you prefer to have as Commander in Chief: A Justin Trudeau an Angela Merkel a Barack Obama?
> I say, regretfully, No.
We have two unpopular candidates running about 40%-40%. Both McCain and Romney did better than 40%. Whether or not a true conservative could do better is open to question, but I would have been happy to try with one of the conservative governors.
I thought the convention speeches by Trump's children were interesting, I'd class Ivanka as a Democrat and I think the others were also. Maybe Newsweek was right that we are all socialists now. Let's see what a president Trump will do, if anything. I'm rather thinking that not doing much might be the best we can hope for.
The analysis is reasonable until he appends this bit:
The Democrats are now a socialist party with a dominant communist wing. The Republican Party nowadays is broader and shifted to the right of the Democrats.
While the parties are certainly polarized, communists have little influence in any political party in the U.S.
Could a pure Conservative, somehow defined, with a cheerful and winning personality win a national election today?
Conservatism is hardly a spent force in American politics, but represents a fundamental pole of political philosophy. The problem is with your use of the term "purity", which implies ideological inflexibility. However, someone adhering to conservative values, such as Reagan, can certainly win in the U.S.
Just a short list of the Democrat connections and collaborations with communists:
The communist Democrats:
President Obama is involved with the following groups:
New Party/Progressive Chicago
Communist Party USA
Committees of Correspondence
the Labor Movement - SEIU's agenda is "my agenda"
ACORN & Project Vote
Council for a Livable World
Hillary is involved with:
Council for a Livable World
Democratic Socialists of America
Democratic Socialists of America
Campaign for America's Future
Communist Party USA
Working Families Party
Farabundo Marti Liberation Front.
People's Weekly World
Treuhaft, Walker and Burnstein.
Iranian American Political Action Committee
Hillary Clinton was directly involved in pardoning the Puerto Rican terrorists FALN.
The Clinton administration and his Democratic Party accepted massive campaign contributions from Loral Space & Communications, Hughes Electronics and other firms. Between 1993 and 1996, the administration allowed the export of ballistic- missile technology to Beijing.
IdahoBob: The Clinton administration and his Democratic Party accepted massive campaign contributions from Loral Space & Communications, Hughes Electronics and other firms
That's funny. Loral Space and Hughes Electronics are communist front organizations. Lists of tenuous value are not arguments.
So the only one you choose to refute is when Bill Clinton sold our secrets to the Chinese and you don't refute the facts but try to make it a joke?!? Does this mean you approve of Democrat politicians selling our secrets and technology to countries who actively oppose us militarily? Are you descended from Ethel and Julius Rosenberg perhaps?
You were arguing association with communist organizations, and listed Loral Space and Hughes Electronics among your examples. Again, lists of tenuous value are not arguments.
As for selling secrets, presumably Bill Clinton is still serving time for the crime. Is that correct?
No. Magically Janet Reno never charged him. I'm sure she was honest and diligent so perhaps she was too busy killing all those children in Waco to get to this issue.
IdahoBob: No. Magically Janet Reno never charged him.
Janet Reno was succeeded by Republican John Ashcroft in 2001.
Since Nixon-Kennedy its been as Virginia Postrel might say, "style over substance". So, yes, the right character could win running for any party. Hell, Trump might have won as a Libertarian if he really went all out for it and started early like Jimmy Carter.