Monday, November 17, 2008

The Moderate Myth

Much has been made of the Moderate Republican. He is touted as the future of the Republican Party and enjoys the approbation of the Rockefeller Republican clique. The moderate floats in an enigmatic strata of Washingtonian society, assuming the form and language of the conservative while prostituting himself to the Washington elite. During the last election cycle, this new breed of Republican manifested itself, the deformed offspring of a thoroughly liberal left and of a pandering, apostate right. Wrapped in a utilitarian pseudo-intellectualism, the moderate felt no cognitive dissonance at aping the cause of conservatism in public but within the marbled halls of Capital Hill actively propagating and establishing a liberal socialist agenda. This wretched alliance, between Moderate Republican and Liberal Democrat, produced the 700 billion dollar welfare check written to the banking industry. Sadly, the Republican presidential candidate, John McCain, was infected with this moderate mentality. McCain was, therefore, compelled to waffle on issues and failed to effectively confront Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. on traditionally conservative points. BO, essentially, won the election on a conservative issue: lowering taxes. Given the clear weaknesses in BO's position early in the campaign (i.e. the potentially devastating relationship with Rev. Wright and BO's blatant socialism), it was McCain's election to lose. And, as a good moderate, McCain lost. But, not as big as some would have you believe. About five million more votes were cast in this election year than in 2004. However, the 127 million votes fell short of even McCain internal estimates of 130 million. This is the moderate legacy.  It is a failure to ignite interest by failing to define principals and to defend them. Simply, it is a failure to take a stand. For many conservatives, there was no compelling reason to cast a vote. 

I remember the languid years of the Carter presidency. I remember, vividly, the national shame during the Iranian hostage crisis. I can still feel the blush of embarrassment on my cheeks as I watched American citizens paraded through Iranian streets on television, while an impotent Carter looked on. I remember the gas lines, the skyrocketing inflation, and interest rates which spiraled out of control under liberal democrat economic policy. (Mark these words: Obama will make Jimmy Carter look like a Reagan conservative. Even now, the DOW plunges in preparation for Obama's capital gains tax hikes. American businesses move into defensive postures, laying off tens of thousands in anticipation of Obama's corporate tax hikes. And, America's enemies will be emboldened by Obama's perceived naivete and gutless weakness. Don't forget, BO has already promised to close Guantanamo Bay! What buffoonery!) Then, Reagan changed it all. He, quite simply, did what he promised. He stood for an ideal, for conservative principals, and didn't back down. The American people responded by handing him a landslide victory. The American people responded to a Republican who stood for capitalism, the free markets, lower taxes, smaller government, and a powerful national defense without apology or reservation. Reagan did not equivocate, did not pander to the left but battled their insidious ideology. He made us proud again and projected a national image of economic and military power. America's enemies quailed. 

Reagan and Governor Sarah Palin share something essential in common: a deep commitment to conservative principals and a willingness to take a stand. Examine the exit poll data, Sarah carried McCain. Without her, and her uncompromising stand on conservative principles, the Republican base would never have mobilized in any appreciable numbers. This much is clear, the American people have no stomach for the vacillation of the moderates, the Republican Center. The American people desire a conservative leader with no proclivity to capitulate to left wing socialism or centrist notions of euro-centric values. The myth of the moderate is that they can be all things to all people. The truth of the matter is that, in their efforts to offend no one, moderates fail to impress anyone.   

12 comments:

Steve said...

More people voted in 2008 than 2004. You're just plain wrong on that one, unless you have some cockamamie conspiracy theory about that too. I can pull numbers from a dozen different sources (including FOX) to back up what I'm saying.

Moderate McCain didn't lose the election for the GOP; George W. Bush did. W is one of the most unpopular presidents in history. You may like him, John, but a vast majority in this country doesn't, whether it's for a good reason or not. W gave McCain his endorsement, but there's a good reason why we never saw W campaigning for McCain. McCain tried to stay as separate from Bush as possible, and Bush kept his distance to try and help McCain, but it didn't work. Bush's approval rating is rock bottom, and his disapproval rating is proportionate to that. It's hard to win on the heels of a president from your party who's so disliked by most Americans. Mitt Romney and Huckabee would have very likely lost as well. This war is just too unpopular, and the troubled economy just compounds that.

MorDred said...

It sounds as though you are demonizing the attempts of moderate Republicans to compromise. And you are using the image of Reagan to make this point?

Like any good leader, Reagan well knew the value of compromise. Here are his thoughts on the subject in his own words:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/960104/posts

Reagan communicated. He compromised, as all good leaders know how to do.
Sarah Palin represents an uncompromising stand on socially conservative values. If the Republican party does not learn how to compromise, if it does not moderate the extreme and imposing views of the radical religious right, then it will continue to be marginalized.

Moderates can successfully take a stance and firmly represent their views. However when they harden their position to the point of becoming brittle, radical and extremist, then they are easily shattered.

Sarah Palin carried a shrinking Republican base that no longer
represent the values of the majority of the American people. There is no clearer evidence of this than this election.

After all was said and done, the American people indicated where they stand. Denial of this fact will only delay efforts to repair the party.

A few more notes:

More people voted in 2008 than in 2004. I believe you are factually incorrect there.
http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5i34ao3tow5yhj2v7v24HM_wbT8JQD948LJRG0

Also this was a big election victory:
http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/results/president/

This year there was a difference of 8 million in the popular vote, and 203 electoral votes so far (MO not yet credited). Republicans haven't done as well in the electoral college since Bush Sr., and Reagan in the popular vote. This was not a close election, it was a clear victory for Barack Obama. Why misrepresent the results?

McCain ran on the same "buffoonery" of closing Guantanamo Bay. It is a blemish on the nations' conscience ( torture without habeas corpus ) along with the offshore prison ships the military has been operating. Does this not also make your heart ache for our nation?

People have been getting laid off all year, even before the election, due to the economic policies that are currently in place. How can you rationalize placing blame for our current situation on someone who isn't even in office yet?

If you would argue that the current Bush administration is not responsible for our current economic crisis in some way, then you also implicitly agree that they have not been governing well, since managing the economy is part of their responsibility.

If you would argue that neither Bush or McCain adequately represent conservative Republican values (apostate?), then I should wonder how they ever got nominated.

peace,
-alan

P.S: The word 'apostate' is most often used in a religious context. Were you referring to an apostasy of faith, or apostasy as a betrayal of conservative values? I assumed the latter.

Justin said...

The United States will never again embrace a hardcore conservative the same way Reagan was embraced. Sorry, Bush ran as a conservative no matter what YOU think. The American public still believes Bush is a conservative, except conservatives. I doubt in my lifetime California will become a red state, or New York for that matter. I seriously doubt that if Sarah Palin become the republican nominee in 2012, she would be able to carry any more states than John McCain did in this last election. Unless my eyes deceive me, America is becoming more progressive. The pundits can claim that America is center-right, but the center is on the left side. I have no qualms with fiscal conservatism, however, I am a social liberal. I don't appreciate being belittled because I believe in a secular society. I think it is ridiculous that one party, or the extreme of that party, can claim that their politics are what's best for this nation and that they are ALWAYS right. "The democrats are always wrong! Always vote Republican!" John, what you are telling me is that I should endorse the most conservative candidate of the republican party? Why is the most conservative candidate so appropriate yet the most liberal candidate is associated with the Nazis or Communism? You have to understand that the whole point of moderates is that nobody wants to take an extreme position. You can't force evangelical Christianity onto the American people no more than you can force atheism (Evangelicals still have way better odds). By polarizing political parties, you drive away independents and without them, you can never win elections. I'd like to see proof that moderates and independents break towards social conservatism. Reagan is dead. Stop making him out to be Jesus. If he returns, he will be Jesus. Then I'd vote for him.

For full disclosure, I am a registered Republican. A moderate Republican. How dare you question my party affiliation. That is my American right. I affiliate with the party of equal rights, the party that freed the slaves. I don't think conservatives are on the same page. I also live ONE NEIGHBORHOOD away from the Reagan library, so i guess i am closer to Reagan than you. Meh.

jivenjie said...

I'm a reagan fan myself. Although i'm not an american and too young to remember that administration i was captivated to learn about him in history

Communism, big goverment and the long recession of the 70's was confronted in his era and as far as i can remember the Americans were so strong, confident and patriotic at that time. This is reagan's accomplishments and many people recognized it.

Reagan's trait can be found in Sarah Palin. I just love her. She came out from nowhere to pull and excites all sorts of conservatives that nobody has ever done since reagan. And the beautiful thing is SHE IS a WOMAN. Everyone expect another man to carry the mantle of Reagan, but not really. And everyone expect Hillary to be the only first woman popular enough to run for president..but sorry to disappoint. Sarah came to bring down all expectations..

.. that's why it works like magic when she came

John said...

Steve,

I stand corrected on my research concerning the 08 vs 04 election results. Thanks for the heads-up.

Some of you who visit this blog and leave comments whine incessantly about how your views are not represented. My answer to your accusation is: have you ever examined the comments section in other posts throughout this blog? The accusation is preposterous as you can plainly see. If you haven't yet guessed, this is a pro Sarah Palin blog. Comments that come from the left are treated in the spirit that they are given. If you presume to challenge conservative principals here then you must expect to feel the keen edge of my sword. If you don't care for the intellectual combat then don't step onto the field of honor. Some left wing radicals are fond of coming here to pontificate. They receive the sound flogging they deserve. I do not throw my pearls before swine. Those of you on the left have demonstrated your racism, perversity, intolerance and anti-intellectualism.

If you come here searching, with honest questions, you will be treated with due courtesy. For those of you seeking compromise with socialism or with the radical ideas that Obama espouses, move along. I do not suffer fools lightly. There will be no compromise with vulgar socialism, collectivism, or the liberal left. Hypocrites! The left castigated Governor Palin, hurling personal attacks at her of the most depraved nature. Bush was pilloried and lambasted by the left. Yet, when we criticize Obama's IDEAS or have the temerity to use his middle name, we are castigated. Revel while you can. Your messiah will fail you and this nation will pay the price in blood and treasure.

John said...

P.S.

Mordred,

Reagan never compromised principal. That's the point. Ignorance is our most expensive commodity.

Concerning Guantanamo: I could care less what happens to terrorists captured on the field of battle. Your sympathies are misplaced. Imprisonment is too good for them. I would prefer that they all experience a long fall on a short rope.

heather said...

John,

How can you possibly consider your self pro-life when, talking about another human being, you say, "I would prefer that they all experience a long fall on a short rope."
Our country needs to set an example to the rest of the world that we treat all people with dignity. Not just the ones who look like us.

thomas said...

Not surprised, John, but still disappointed that you hide behind your rules of profanity or incivility but still refuse to post the most effective arguments opposing your point of view.

Instead you print the easy ones, easy that is for you to pick apart. But you conceal from the readers your inability to sharpen your sword on thornier opposition. The accusation is not at all preposterous; it is, in fact, plain to see.

I do not ask you to compromise your principles nor suffer fools. And I am glad, ecstatic even, to have you pick apart my ideas, eager to feel the keen edge of your sword when I challenge your beliefs. Intellectual combat is what I was hoping for but you will have to post those ideas before you can flog them.

As far as hurling depravities at Palin or anyone else, I have never done that, or used inappropriate language or done anything except express a Christian position in opposition to your own. I have never thought my positions were beyond criticism or that people should refrain from criticizing Obama. I believe that in examining the ideas of people who have a different point of view I am forced to more closely examine my own. I only think you seem satisfied with posting the easy pickings.

At one time I thought it was because my comments were long (I do not believe it is possible to answer your lengthy posts with any substance if I limit my comments to the sound bites that survive the censors hand). But I have seen other long posts that got printed although it seems mostly ones generally agree with your ideas.

Thomas

third rock from the sun said...

The Dems have a short memory. I remember it was just this year that the Democratic party was fumbling around trying to find themselves and the Republicans had it all together, sort of. Then along came Palin and redeemed the Republican once and for all.
The mainstream media acting like the secret service and willing to take a bullet for BO and inturn aiming the bullet at Palin was our demise. They didn't even check out the crazy and false stories they ran about her and they have yet to retract any of the crap that turned out to be false accusations. They saw that Palin was extraordinarily intelligent and they had to try to discredit her at all cost. I admire Palin's family for valiantly taking the horrendous media abuse and forging ahead. On the other hand, BO threatened America to leave Michele alone when she was singled out. Probably because he didn't want to her to b----slap anyone in retaliation and cost him the presidency.

One blogger said that it was a woeful display of a bought and paid for press, and some reporters, especially, thought the world is a school playground and they were the star bullies, cheer leading the insane hate fest against Mrs. Palin.

The media reported BO ahead by 12 points all the time whether it was true or not. Alot of Republicans (shame on them) probably thought it was useless to pick up a pen to vote. We did have fewer voters this year. BO's voters were up, but remember, that is only because they had a blitz of new younger voters and voters of color that voted for the first time that made up the 2.3 million votes that kept McCain and Palin out of the White House. Really, if Dems want to claim victory with the dim light of Acorn drumming up fraud voter registration, let them. If BO is the kind of character who breaks his promise to accept private money, let him. It just solidifies what I think of them already. But I especially like the fact that some people like to think the media is fair because we have FOX. I live in a Dem state where you have to pay extra for Fox. All I was being fed was mainstream media's lies and I still love what Palin represents.

BO's harped on how he didn't want anymore of the last eight years. What I see, is him wanting more of 'sixteen' years ago, because he is filling his cabinet with Clinton's people. So much for change. Remember when BO echoed in 2007 that he would not have any lobbyist in the White House. Think again. Now his tune has changed to lobbyists will be allowed but have to operate with ethics. So now it is becoming clear to me exactly what the infamous word Change meant all along. It means he can say what people want to hear and then when he gets elected...he can CHANGE his mind and do what he wants. I am happy to report that I was not one of the gullible ones. If you voted for BO, don't kick yourself too hard for falling for it. After all, when was the last time you bought something after watching an infomercial and it wasn't anything like the commercial. That was the clincher for me not to vote for BO...his infomercial. If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Haven't you heard that one?

Joe said...

John,

Again: really? You're serious? The closing of Guantanamo Bay, buffoonery? Yowzah.

I appreciate your opinion, but I'm not sure that any candidate could have run on that position and won in the current political climate.

I'm sure you're aware that I lie across the political divide from you. So I have to ask: do you really think that a candidate can win an election without wooing moderates or independents? If so, why, what would make you believe this? Short of a majority of the population holding view--to the left or right--that could be described as radical there's no way to win without the center.

I understand us to be diametrically opposed idealists but political ideology is one thing. The reality of campaigning is another. Putting aside your claims of Obama's socialism, any American candidate that campaigned as such a wingnut before the current populace would fail spectacularly. Cases in point: Ron Paul, Ralph Nader.

McCain was campaigning in a terribly unfavorable environment with a very difficult set of variables. He is, as you point out frequently, a moderate Republican, almost a centrist. He had to change enough of his stances--on abortion, same-sex marriage or immigration for example--to survive the Republican primary. This move right while the attention of the nation was focused on him meant it was difficult for him to then lean on the support that had typically been his big draw: moderates. Seeing that Obama had branded himself as a moderate willing to work with Republicans, essentially the same position that McCain had been cultivating for years Senator McCain had to go a different direction.

Enter Sarah Palin. Governor Palin brought McCain into the current Republican fold. She shored up his conservative credentials. But that same movement--that same drawing-in--also pushed out the moderate right and left.

With only the right's base voting against the center and the left there was nothing to be done Especially against such a well-funded and executed ground game.

Personally I hope that Sarah Palin manages to keep herself in the public eye and miraculously beat out Bobby Jindal in '12 for the Republican nomination. I think that she is far less electable that Governor Jindal, especially since she seems to stick in the craw of the left and motivate them to vote, if only to vote against her. But that's just me.

I must disagree with you that the Grand Ole Party needs to abandon its center. I think that rather it needs to identify its core values and embrace those. What are the tenets that can earn the Republican party back those voters it lost during this last cycle? You point out Obama's winning on a fiscally conservative issue. This I would argue is the GOP's bread-and-butter: fiscal conservatism. Minimize the Evangelical bent while playing up strong economic values and you'll find the right in a stronger position to win elections.

For what it's worth.

Marfa said...

It would be great if we could vote for a true conservative, not a moderate, but these days, it's hard to find someone who's going to prove themselves as Reagan. Hopefully after the 4 years with OB, America will vote for a true conservative!

Paul_Z said...

It was interesting perusing through all the comments and seeing the ire of the Democrats and in general the Liberal and Moderates in both parties attacking Sarah Palin. Come to think of it Ronald Reagan was ridiculed for his “trickle down theory” but was able to take 43 states in the first election (and 489 electoral votes), and once the country saw how he was so wishy-washy when it came to the Soviet Union (“the evil empire”, and “Gorvachev tear down this wall”) the speeches to the country when the congress did not wish to act o his tax cuts, and all the other conservative issues her stood for, the country rewarded him (only 10 years after Nixon) with the 49 state sweep and 525 electoral college votes (only MN and DC did not go his way).

Conservative values are still accepted by the country, but not as talked by moderates and compromisers. Conservative values are not the “extreme” that the liberals wish many to think. Conservative values are main stream America. Assigning blame for the 2008 election will be done by historians, not by me. What I believe we need is a Leader (with a capital L) to lead us forward and to find our voice not by 2012, but by 2010 so that we can properly prepare for 2012.

If this group, Moms 4 Sarah Palin are willing to take the full challenge on, they will get my full support. It starts today, and it starts with a focus on voicing our beliefs for 2010



Respectfully Submitted,
The Lee’s Summit Conservative
www.leessummitconservative.blogspot.com