John Knowles’s classic novel, A Separate Peace, begins memorably:
I went back to the Devon School not long ago, and found it looking oddly newer than when I was a student there fifteen years before . . . as if a coat of varnish had been put over everything for better preservation.
I get precisely the opposite feel when I look at the Republican Party.
Republicans Return to Disarray
Less than two years after the Tea Party carried Republicans to historic gains in Congress and state houses around the country, the Grand Old Party looks much older than grand. Its skin is coarse and leathery. Pachyderm-ish.Or like the broken, bleeding hands of a North Dakota railroad worker in January. It’s as if a coat of Elmer’s Glue had been put over everything to blister and peel and crack like mud under the burning sun.
Across Missouri, people were driven away by heavy-handed party regulars. The disenchanted were mostly newcomers to politics.
Most infamous of these events was the St. Charles County debacle in which the county chairman ruled with an iron fist, inspiring a rebellion that ended with police riot squads clearing the premises and arresting two caucus-goers. Ready to lead, indeed.
In Illinois, a wealthy young man from a prominent family unleashed a tidal wave of lies—flat out, ridiculous, and cruel lies—against a decent and honest opponent. Meanwhile, the Illinois GOP insiders threatened and cajoled anyone who dared support the young heir’s opponent. At a Lincoln Days dinner in Madison County, I heard a small business owner explain the sticker on his chest: “I’m not supporting him, but they’ll go after my business if I don’t wear this.”
Liberty my foot. The Illinois GOP is every bit as capable of totalitarian control as the Obama administration. It feels like the Republican Party is more interested in protecting the power and redistributive entitlements of its long-time insiders than in growing its base. The party fears new blood (except their properly schooled off-spring), the way closed country clubs of the 1970s feared blacks, Jews, and Catholics.
Where Does the Money Go?
Did I say “redistributive entitlements?” Yes, I did. When it comes to government spending, the biggest difference between the Republicans and Democrats is to whom they redistribute our money. Democrats buy votes with tax dollars; Republicans buy donors.
Now, I admit, I’d rather live in a nation led by Republicans than one ruled by Democrats. Republicans tolerate more personal liberty and more economic growth. They are more open to learning and to experimenting with better methods than are Democrats. Republicans remain naturally skeptical of experts who’ve never accomplished anything in real life.
But only slightly.
Republicans do not tolerate real competition between businesses. They championed TARP as much the Democrats did, and TARP was the crown jewel of anti-competitive legislation. Nor do they welcome newcomers into the party—at least not newcomers who want an equal say in things.
I realize that people who’ve worked on Township committees for 20 years want to have more influence than some guy who accidentally wanders into his first caucus looking for a public toilet. But rigging the process to produce results that were predetermined by a small cadre of insiders doesn’t help Republicans win or grow the base—it helps launch third parties.
After the Tea Party dragged the GOP across the finish line in 2010, to borrow Mike Leahy’s line, the GOP wanted nothing more to do with us. They’ve quietly toiled to let us know our kind isn’t welcome. We’re like Irish and Italian immigrants a century and a quarter ago. “We’re going to vote now, dear. Be a good little immigrant and take out the trash.”
If the Republicans don’t wake up and grow up quickly, come November they will find themselves the most exclusive club in America—on their way to joining the Whigs.
Who Held the Line?
The GOP in Missouri wasted the biggest influx of new blood into the political fight in 30 years. Now you understand why so many young people support Ron Paul. The Democrats are destroying the country, but who has the stomach to work with Republicans?
In 2008 and 2009, Republicans across the country gave up. They let Al Franken steal a seat. They let Arlen Specter slip through their fingers. They embraced the idea of 40 years of Democratic Rule. Heck, even Roy Blunt was touring the state hoping to stop Robin Carnahan from being the 60th Senator. They had given up.
- While the Republican Establishment cut deals with Democrats, The Tea Party stood in the gap and said “No more.”
- While the Republican Establishment cowered behind city walls, we charged into the streets and parks and hearings and town halls declaring, “we created this government, not the other way around.”
- While the Republican Establishment ducked its head and buried its wallet and worried about its political future, our flesh and blood held back and reversed the tide to historic victories across the country.
It was the Tea Party that held back Obamacare from fast track implementation in August of 2009. They were ready to pass it, and we stepped up in the townhalls and said HELL NO! We were telling them it was costly and unconstitutional long before the CBO and the Supreme Court got involved. We were right then. Do you remember?
It was the Tea Party that made a national mission out of Scott Brown’s election in Massachusetts. And if the Supreme Court overturns ObamaCare, it will be because the Democrats rushed the bill through the Senate knowing Brown was the 41st vote for freedom.
It wasn’t just healthcare shoved down our throats. The Republicans couldn’t stop the stimulus. They put up token resistance and then a bunch of them voted for the omnibus budget a few weeks later (allowing Claire McCaskill to vote against it because Kit Bond voted for it). They ducked the debt ceiling fight. They refused to defund Obamacare or the czars. They were given a huge majority in the House of Representatives – the power of the purse, and what have they have done with it? The debt continues to grow as the Senate refuses to even consider a budget.
Now it’s March, 2012. In Missouri, the Tea Party candidates have been driven out and redistricted and co-opted. What exactly is a Tea Partier supposed to fight for in Missouri? Where’s our skin in the game? Who can we stand behind?
The Republicans don’t appreciate what was done for them. They will. They will wake up this fall to empty phone banks, small events, and the full attention of a press eager to prove 2010 a historical anomaly.
Come October, the Occupy Crowd will hound them at local events, and the social media will be all leftwing, all the time. The Republicans will have lost the narrative, and they will once again be playing defense.
And they’ll put a coat of varnish on the state capitol and talk about the ebb and flow of politics, as the debt tsunami approaches. The Tea Party was willing to fight alongside Republicans. We never signed up to fight for them. The danger is not that Tea Party voters sit on their hands and let Obama stay into office. It’s that across the nation, publicly funded groups like the unions and the new ACORN and Occupy and Color for Change are preparing for 2012. The Republicans, in their arrogance, have decided to tell a million volunteers and donors to stay home.
As patriots with families and businesses, we have choices on how to use the limited time God has granted us. We are forced to choose where to apply our time and attention. Is that focus to be placed on working with candidates and fighting the mainstream media? Or is it shoring up our homes, finances, families, and communities for whatever comes next?
Eunuchorn: (n) “conservative” emasculated male who is working for national political organizations, their state counterparts, or one aspiring to be any part of this unfortunate class. This word is a semantic change of “eunuch”, a term Andrew Breitbart was fond of using to describe such people (for obvious reasons). Andrew and I didn’t agree on a few issues, but we agreed on the big issues. Long before Andrew arrived on the scene, as the very public and intentional “happy warrior”, many of us activists knew who our enemy was. Andrew was able to articulate it with special efficacy, likely due to his time as an author and the muscle behind Huffington Post and The Drudge Report: we’re fighting a war against the professional left. However, Andrew’s eunuchs are another enemy, one within our ranks, which most of us don’t want to acknowledge. That’s about to change.
When Andrew died, I took the day off from work, social networking, etc., because even though Andrew and I weren’t close, I, like many others, realized that we had lost our most effective warrior in actively taking the battle to the enemy (vs. “our side” always being reactionary). Late that evening, I decided that I was all in for the fight. I concluded that many of us are needed to fill Andrew’s shoes, and I happen to be in a place in life where I have the ability, experience, network, and resources to meet this challenge. A couple days later, I told some of my friends in town for Andrew’s funeral about my personal epiphany and my commitment to the cause. I’ve been iterating on the battle plans since.
I don’t know exactly how Andrew envisioned the war unfolding, but I’ve been using the definition in this context: A state of hostility, conflict, or antagonism. A struggle between opposing forces for a particular end. Ayn Rand looked at it like this: ”A political battle is merely a skirmish fought with muskets; a philosophical battle is a nuclear war.” I encourage you to develop your own teams and strategies, but consider these fundamental ideas of philosophical war as you move forward. My model is inspired and energized by Sherman, Patton, and Sun-Tzu; read them, and you’ll get the idea. I’m sure as hell not going to post my strategy online, but you saw a very thin slice of one aspect in the Sandra Fluke piece (there are a couple updates posted). The Washington Times is now hounding Anita Dunn asking her for an interview to discuss whether Sandra Fluke and the White House colluded before her “testimony”. That strawman has been pulverized, no matter how the enemy wants to present it moving forward. I definitely learned some lessons, and I admit that I made some tactical mistakes. I will adapt. Trust me, this is only the beginning.
We have $15 trillion in debt due to the political machine’s ineffectiveness, and many of these toolless wimps (note the band-aid on the eunuchorn’s crotch in the above picture) on “our side” keep doing more of the same things that got us to this low point. Does it really need to be said that this milquetoast people group, with their self-serving and self-preserving agendas, are not the answer? HELL YES. The point needs reinforcement if we’re going to have substantive change and start weaning people of their publicly subsidized “jobs”. However, regardless of how much fun I have publicly smacking the eunuchorns around on Twitter, I’m not content to throw out the baby with the bathwater – but, I’m still trying to ascertain if it’s the baby or the bathwater that needs to go. How many billions of dollars have gone through organizations like Heritage, AFP, Freedomworks, CATO, NRA, etc., yet we’re still fighting for the heart and soul of our nation?
In fairness, some of the eunuchorns who served in the military were able to fight heroically in that previous professional calling. Sadly, they have no clue how to fight the professional left. But, they *think* they do, as most political eunuchorns love to believe they have the answers, even though their abhorrent track record proves otherwise. It’s about results, not your donor-subsidized resume, peppered with examples of being reactionary to the left’s proactive attacks.
However, the eunuchorns will continue to blog about finer points of policy, tweet all damned day in support of candidates like the severely conservative Etch A Sketch (Brad was correctly mocking some of the them here) et al, and write whitepapers! America struggles under the weight of $60+ trillion in unfunded liabilities, with no sign of any decrease in the foreseeable future, yet too many everyday conservatives choose to remain influenced by what this naive political class churns out, as they have for decades. Polishing a turd isn’t as bad as letting the turd polish you. Am I saying that all whitepapers are bad? No, but *most* whitepapers should be used to wipe your ass when you’re done reading them, because the later is likely a more pragmatic result. Meanwhile, our leftist enemies are supporting the Occupy rejects, who use police cars to wipe their asses – I wonder if whitepapers would solve that problem. Perhaps a bipartisan organization could provide once-read “conservative” whitepapers for the Occupiers to wipe with. Hmm… I digress, or do I?
A little background to qualify some of my statements, especially about the Tea Party (some of this will be redundant for people who’ve known me awhile – skip this paragraph if that’s you.), I’ve been a federalist since I cut my teeth on the words of our founders at the ripe old age of 8. I’ve never been registered with any party, not even the GOP. Although, I was formally involved with the Libertarian Party before the crazies invaded, was a local vice-chair, and a national delegate in the LP, as well. During this time, we fought against TennCare, unsuccessfully, but we led the fight against the proposed Tennessee state income tax, and were successful. I’ve been at this activism thing for a long time, right up through being one of the original founders of the Tea Party movement, and I’ve moderated the Teapartiers listserve for the past few years. I never vote for democrats, because I despise the totalitarian means that collectivists use to advance their agenda. I struggle with my support of many GOP presidential candidates. The same GOP, which in 2008, gave us McCain, and in 2012, they’re likely to give us Romney. More of the same gilded shite! The by-product of this gold-covered crap, no doubt, of decades of the masters and masses staring out through the same Overton window.
Over the last few months, I’ve been speaking with former Teapartiers about the next iteration of our work. I say former Teapartiers, because most of us have moved on (most moved on after the 2010 mid-term election we handed the GOP on a silver platter), as the Tea Party was never supposed to be a status quo cadre. But, people like Judson Philips, who just joined the rest of the charlatans at Tea Party Net (they’re the group that was propped up by CPAC as “Tea Party” this year), have too much invested in the Tea Party “brand” to let it go. The establishment shysters are trying to milk that co-opted dead horse. Tasty. Hell, even Lucifer’s buddy Alinsky knew that people had to move on to the next thing to keep their interest, and more importantly, their effectiveness. During these recent conversations about possible new steps, I’ve presented, as others have (Buckley, for example, who was hugely effective) in the past, federalism as the answer to more effectively label and pursue our intent. Last month, I brought the conversation about federalism to the open forum of Twitter. In these discussions, the consensus among most conservatives is that “conservatism” now denotes Romney, Santorum, Gingrich and company and not a view of first principles federalism. Many have expressed the desire to break with traditional beltway-styled circle-jerks, because even though these career politicos purport to be laissez faire regarding capitalism, but they’re more accurately laissez-nous faire about everything, because they’re better than you schmucks. There are a few who think we still need these career political planners as allies. Allies? How about neutered servants? Personally, I believe we need to break the eunuchorns like a cowboy would a self-serving horse, get them in line, and refocus their “zeal”. They can be our allies, not vice versa. Amat victoria curam.
Having “ingratiated” myself to a few in the eunuchorn class, via publicly ridiculing their continued wasteful and misguided efforts, it’s been pointed out to me, by some of my Twitter followers, that the eunuchorns have been sneering (some of the betas love to stalk me. that’s typical beta behavior.) at my pseudo-rejection of conservatism in favor of federalism. I say pseudo-rejection, because flipping a cultural paradigm overnight is impossible to do, and splitting hairs over terminology is a waste of time. I believe messaging is important, but call yourself whatever you want, as long as federalism is a large part of your foundation.
The reports of the eunuchorn sneers about my federalist paradigm are interesting, because in a recent twist, that the betas obviously missed, or ignored, Jonah Goldberg’s piece, hails none other than federalism as the cure for what ails political parties and modern conservatism:
The main advantage of federalism is more fundamental than the “laboratories of democracy” idea. Federalism is simply the best political system ever conceived of for maximizing human happiness. A one-size-fits-all policy imposed at the national level has the potential to make very large numbers of citizens unhappy, even if it was arrived at democratically. In a pure democracy, I always say, 51 percent of the people can vote to pee in the cornflakes of 49 percent of the people.
Jonah also notes:
It [federalism] would also dethrone those in both parties who think they know what’s best for more than 300 million Americans.
To the Enuchorns:
The irony is that you didn’t even notice Jonah’s piece, and if any of you did notice, did you take the time to mock Jonah? No, because in many ways, you aspire to be like him. Political betas, if you’ve been spending all your time devoted to your political, donor-subsidized, “careers”, while attacking the fighters on “our side”, rather than doing something truly effective, you’re doing it wrong. Yes, we remember how most of you despised the Tea Party when it started. We watched as you recently begged for Rush to apologize for his justifiable attack on a leftist strawman argument, and you *literally* praised God after he folded under pressure from you and the left. And many of the true fighters on our side recently watched a few of you try to paint some in our ranks as something we’re not, while using leftist tactics. For what purpose… who knows? How’s any of that working for America? Did you affect that $15 trillion debt, eunuchorns? No, you didn’t. However, you did show your true colors, and the people who matter most have seen those colors. Fortunately, most of the fighters will no longer see you as allies, and I’m glad we pushed the requisite buttons to make that happen. Hook. Line. Sinker. Small favors and all.
Now is the time to look in the mirror and admit the truth – or sthu, gtho of the way, and continue caving to the left. We’ll know we’re doing something right when you join the left in attacks against us. You can tune out now, but I’m sure you’re already distracted by some whitepaper, policy blog post, or a tweet about a candidate that you’re in the tank for. Bye, political betas!
Back to the warriors:
As you now know, the war we’ve undertaken isn’t only our assault against the professional left, it will continue to involve our getting sniped in the back by the political class and their lackeys on “our side”, because the reality is that these people are comfortable where there are. They love their tiny insignificant perches, because what is most important to them is looking down on all you slack-jawed yokels while they pontificate amongst themselves.
All politicians, in any party, need your accountability, not just your vote. See: history.
Don’t kowtow to the left, because they’re your enemy, and as William F. Buckley Jr. said, they “lie”.
Don’t kowtow to the eunuchorns, because, by definition, they don’t have any balls, and they’re obviously more interested in drawing a paycheck via their hoodwinked donors.
The ranks are forming. Pick a side. And don’t forget the most important rule: loyalty means everything in this fight.