Monday, November 10, 2008

Older Protestant White Guys

Norman Ornstein discusses the hill Republicans have to climb to get back into power.

In so many respects -- culturally, ethnically, sociologically, internationally -- the election of Barack Obama has altered the landscape. It also has changed the political terrain, making the path for Republicans to return to majority status in the electorate daunting -- an uphill climb akin to scaling Mt. Everest. Without pitons.
The party certainly has come a long way since Ronald Reagan's landslide in 1980. So what does the party have left in terms of voters?
Most ominous for the GOP is what has been happening with younger voters. As a share of the electorate, 18- to 29-year-olds grew only slightly, from 17% to 18%. But they grew in terms of numbers of voters by more than 2.2 million (perhaps up to 4.5 million) and gave 66% of their votes to Obama. Partisan identity tends to crystallize in this age range. If Obama succeeds over the next four or eight years, these voters may carry their Democratic identity through their lifetimes. For Republicans, the danger is that their only reliable voting bloc may remain older white guys. Make that older Protestant white guys. Ouch.
Well that does not look very promising. So who has the party lost? It lost the fiscal conservatives due to profligate spending. It has also lost the socially liberal due to the pandering to the concerns of the Protestant white guys.
Republicans need to be more than just the only other option on the ballot in four years. They must find a message -- be it a more refined compassionate conservativism, the folksy populism of Mike Huckabee or even a fiscally conservative/environmentally conservationist fusion -- that speaks to the segments of the electorate that are growing. And then they need a leader to deliver it. At this early date after a dramatic election, there is no sign they have either.
I don't know that an environmentalism that is determined to wreck the economy is a sound move.

So lets look at the Democrat's coalition and see if we can figure out the problem. Who are they? Blacks, Gays, Jews, Catholics, pro-abortion folks, illegal drug users. There are more but there are enough there to make my point. It seems like a very disparate group with nothing in common. I mean what do pro abortion people have in common with Catholics? It is pretty simple really. These groups have all, in the last 100 years or so been victims of those Protestant white guys. All you have to do is to look at the electoral map of 2008. What does the Republican Party have left? Basically they have the Old South. Home of those Older Protestant white guys. And if you look at the map closely the Democrats have even been making inroads into the home territory of the older Protestant white guys. Not a happy prospect for the future.

Here is what one academic author has to say about authoritarianism in the South.
White Southerners, always hegemonic in defining the region’s history, politics and culture, frequently demonstrate, and have demonstrated, strikingly strong resistance to diversity. While Southern white party loyalties have switched from majority Democratic to majority Republican, intolerance of difference appears woven into the region’s political and social fabric, more so than in other regions. This observation draws substantial support from historical studies (Goldfield 2002), and other research examining specific elements of Southern culture, i.e. the Southern culture of honor (Nisbett and Cohen 1996), Southern Baptist and other evangelical Protestant religious traditions (Rosenberg 1989; Smith 1997; Green et al. 2003)
And as that resistance to diversity finally declines so does party loyalty.

So what is the way forward? Sarah Palin. Why her? She represents a new strain of deeply devout Protestant evangelical. The people of Alaska didn't even know her religious affiliation until this election. She did not practice the intolerance of those old Protestant white guys. No one had a clue about her stance on abortion. And that is a big clue. Basically she was fiscally conservative and socially moderate. In other words a libertarian. No surprise there. She comes from Alaska, the most libertarian state in the nation.

She represents a rebirth of the Leave Us Alone Coalition. About time.

H/T Hot Air

Cross Posted at Classical Values


Neil said...


I think you've missed something important here. The Democrat Party has its own batch of Protestant White Guys--the uber-Protestants: Puritans, Unitarians, Progressives, whatever you want to call them.

There are/were three important strains of Protestantism in America; Puritans, Anglicans, and Calvinist/Evangelicals. The Anglicans' stronghold was the Southern planter aristocracy who were destroyed in the Civil War. The Puritans were their nemesis, and Obama's election has them at the peak of their power.

The Evangelicals are a somewhat motley collection from the Scots-Irish tradition, with Northern European mainstream Protestants floating in and out of the coalition (think Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, etc.).

The Republican party cannot capture the Puritan vote. It probably cannot capture the majority of the black or Catholic vote anytime soon. It cannot do without the Evangelical coalition.

However, it should be entirely possible to convince the Evangelicals that if they don't want the Puritan's preferences forced on them, they must give up trying to force their preferences on the Puritans. They have a tradition of such thinking, actually.

Edgar said...

Wow! If you're trying split up the GOP, keep this up. You'll succeed in driving an estimated 25 million (mostly) white, Protestant, evangelicals away from the Republican Party, and I seriously doubt the GOP can afford that kind of loss.

Bashing social conservatives is not the answer. I'm white, Southern, evangelical, and conservative, and I voted for John McCain. I advocate limited government, personal responsibility, the traditional nuclear family (if possible), the rights of the unborn, low taxation (or preferably NO income tax, think FAIR tax), a strong military, and yes, defense of our nation's historical Judeo-Christian heritage.

Social conservatives disagreed with President Bush (and John McCain) on a number of policy issues, but understood the absolute necessity of NOT putting a big-government liberal in the White House, and this tripe isn't going to help.

Social conservatives are, by a vast majority, fiscally conservative. Yet, the opposite cannot always be said of those describing themselves as exclusively fiscally conservative. Social conservatives want to keep more of our hard-earned money, and think that individuals should decide for themselves how best to spend their own money. Social conservatives view income taxation as nothing more than legalized theft.

Here's a closing thought. If it was truly the "leave us alone" crowd that defected from the GOP (or stayed home) this election, then credit must be given to the social conservatives who showed up at the polls and pulled the lever for McCain. THEY did what was right, and were the loyal foot soldiers this time around. The numbers from the election show that.

This was NOT a blowout for Obama. So, who is to blame here? I say it's the fickle "independent/leave us alone" crowd.

To our collective regret and shame, the RINOs helped put the far-Left in power to freely advance their agenda. God help us all...because the "leave us alone" crowd didn't.

Neil said...


I should add that calling people names is not an effective persuasive technique with a non-captive audience.

M. Simon said...


So how do you propose getting "leave us alone" types to vote for Republicans?

You could try leaving them alone. If they want abortion - let them have it. Emphasize that it is an issue best left up to the States. Not a Federal issue. A sound economy is more important at this point and something we can agree on.


I don't recall calling any one names. You will correct me if I have.


I have a new bit up on how the Drug War is coming to America as a shooting war.


BTW all I'm suggesting is an end to the Culture War. It is not a winner. It makes enemies.

And I'm sorry, but the socons have been in the lead on that.

Liberty should be the center of the R party. Cultural and Economic.

Neil said...


I agree with the poster over on Classical Values who said that the paper you linked (seemingly approvingly) was primarily an insulting rant against "crackers".

"...white Southerners have always gravitated toward the party that better reflects authoritarian values – today, that is the Republican Party"? That might be true, if you ignore all the authoritarian policies advocated by the Democrat party.

Rather than emphasize your differences with Evangelicals, it would probably be more useful to emphasize the points on which you agree.

Want to make a real difference? Figure out how drug legalization might fit into evangelicals' intellectual tradition, rather than bit**ing that those crackers will never be willing to do the obvious thing. Zero points for making a bad joke that evangelicals don't have an intellectual tradition.

Edgar said...


Regarding your question as to how do I (or anyone) propose we win the "leave us alone" crowd's vote, I must say that I'm not sure we can - even when exclusively presenting fiscal policies to the complete abandonment of social issues.

The "leave us alone crowd" didn't embrace the GOP's arguments advocating free-market principles this time around. They didn't want to play no matter how logical the arguments for economic security were presented by McCain and Palin. Granted, the Left knew they had to present themselves as so-called "moderates" in order to win votes from the "middle", and people bought that lie hook, line, and sinker.

It may take a very long time, but people will eventually realize the mistake that's been made, but not until a great amount of lasting damage has been done. We'll probably begin to see the fallout of this month's decision sometime after 2009 once the two largest tax cuts in U.S. history are allowed to quietly expire in 2010 and the first of an estimated $800 BILLION in new spending is enacted. The expiration of those tax cuts will be a tax increase by default, but people won't scream until it suddenly disappears from their paychecks. They'll ask: "Hey! Where's my money?"

I've always had a hard time trying to understand why people insist on dabbling with liberalism, when we've tried those failed policies countless times in the past. Free/Open-market Capitalism works. Liberal Socialsim does not, and there isn't any room for argument.

As for the leaving them (the middle-of-the-road group) alone, Social Conservatives rallied to defend the rights of the unborn only after the Left "federalized" the issue in 1973 with Roe vs. Wade. If the Pro-Choice group had left the matter to the States and individuals, I don't think this would have ever been brought into the public conscience (anywhere). Yet, those advocating for a Pro-Choice position keep the matter front and center with this specific judicial precedent.

That 7 to 2 decision (an ideological decision) was a blanket attack upon the sanctity and dignity of life for millions of Americans, and until it's overturned, and the issue returned to the 50 states for decision, it'll remain a divisive issue. Roe vs. Wade should have never happened. It's certainly NOT a Constituional issue.

To put it another way: For all those who heap scorn on Social Conservatives for trying to establish a Constitutional ban on gay marriage (at the federal level), the converse is true for abortion. Shouldn't those who enshrined this matter in legal precedent have the same scorn heaped upon them? If the Supreme Court had taken up the issue (for the first time) today, instead of 1971 through 1973, the Court very well may have kicked it back to the States.

I agree with you that liberty should be the center of our Party's policies (Cultural and Economic), and by the way, I liked your suggestion for a plank statement in another post regarding abortion.

"We believe strongly in the sanctity of life but, we also believe abortion is none of the Federal Government's business and that it should be left up to the States, within the limits of the Constitution, to regulate it. We think adoption should be encouraged and will do our best to see that it happens more often."

This is one of the things that I like about the GOP. The Party has made it a point to defend life. The Dems do not.

Fritz said...

Edgar, you state that the "leave us alone" crowd are at fault for Obama's victory. OK. I'm one of the "leave us alone" crowd and, while I did not vote for Obama, I certainly was not going to vote for McCain. As far as I could see, he was much less in favor of leaving me alone than Obama.

Social conservatives have to come up with compelling reasons for those of us who are not social conservatives to, well, put up with them anymore. And it will have to be a damn good reason because I for one am tired of them. I want a small and limited government. Social conservatives want a large and annoying one. And as long as that is true, we had might as well have socialists in charge because, for the most part (i.e. except for gun control), they are less obnoxious.

kennethjulikiera said...

What about Ron Paul? During the primaries he did very well in traditional democrat strongholds such as New York, Calfornia and among the young. He did well even after McCain was crowned the winner. He did poorly in the authoritarian, militaristic south.

Edgar said...


I keep hearing an attempt to lay blame at the feet of social conservatives for McCain's loss, but everything I've said to this point has advocated a (mostly federalist position (see my previous posts): limited government, personal responsibility, low taxation (or NO taxation), gun ownership, etc.

If the "leave us alone" crowd didn't pull the lever for McCain, then it is THEY who, by default, helped advance a far-Left agenda. That doesn't sound like a moderate position to me. The social conservatives were the good foot soldiers for the GOP. The actions (or inaction) of those "in the middle" didn't help conservatives (of any stripe) in the least.

I maintain that social conservatives are more akin to those describing themselves "leave us alone" than the "leave alone crowd" like to think. The only difference being that social conservatives strive to maintain more of America's historical and traditional values and institutions - something that is sacred to them. This is NOT a bad thing, and their (and my) efforts to do so will NEVER change.

On a majority of conservative issues, we CAN agree. Why is this a problem? Or more specifically, what (social conservative) issues are so objectionable that alienates the "leave us alone" crowd?

John McCain was NOT a first pick for many social conservatives, nor was the Huckster, but they knew the alternative was worse (Obama), and they did their job (to help McCain).

Personally, I preferred Fred Thompson or Mitt Romney. I liked Sarah Palin, and hope to see Bobby Jindal or Mike Pence rise to prominence within the GOP in coming years.

Regardless, heaping scorn on social conservatives does NOT (and will not) advance any conservative agenda - cultural or economic. That demographic will only get larger in coming years.

America's traditional Judeo-Christian "nuclear family" is a winner, and the numbers show it.

M. Simon said...


Were is the lower spending and less regulation the socons promised us. As far as I can tell we had the choice of two Economic meddlers (both promised carbon taxes) and one party more committed to Cultural Liberty than the other.

Hard choice. BTW you and fritz are both featured in my latest post.

Thanks guys!!

M. Simon said...

BTW socons would not get so much scorn if they would

Leave Us Alone

Fritz said...


The social conservatives have, over the decades, given us the never ending War on Some Drugs, a war that has caused massive violence in the cities while curtailing civil liberties (remember when the 4th Amendment actually meant something?) and advancing the spread of HIV. If you want a cause we can unite on that doesn't touch the third rail of sexuality, let's focus on that and band together to move drug policy back to the states. How does that sound?

RavingDave said...

You are blameing social conservatives for the war on drugs AND spreading AIDs? SERIOUSLY?

It sounds as though there is a serious deficit of objectivity in these views.


Edgar said...


David beat me to it, but I must ask the same question.

Social conservatives are certainly NOT to blame for another's poor choices resulting in contraction of the AIDS virus, nor are they to blame for, as you put it, the "massive violence" in cities - a very sweeping and unfounded statement.

Social conservatives do NOT want any of those things to befall anyone, and this is exactly why they advocate (legally or otherwise) a more traditional, religious, or even holistic lifestyle, which is within their rights to do.

Shouldn't these individuals be responsible for their own personal choices? No one made them use a dirty needle (or a clean one, for that matter), or engage in certain risky sexual activity. No one forced them to pull a trigger or plunge a knife during a violent crime.

Guns and knives (or needles) don't kill. These are inanimate objects. People kill.

Respectfully, I disagree with you. It seems to me that those participating in these acts can only face the consequences of their choices - regardless of what social conservatives say or do.

Social conservatives could be silent on the matter, yet the results would be the same. Prohibition was abandoned. Yet, alcoholism, domestic violence, etc. still exist.

I've made my position very clear for all to see. Social conservatives were not the cause for the GOP's loss this election. They showed up at the polls and pulled the lever for McCain - whether they were in his corner or not. They reasoned the alternative was worse...and it will be.

What I can't wrap my head around is why the "leave us alone" crowd walked away from free-market principles, limited government, low taxation, and a strong military (issues WE can all agree agree on) knowing economic ruin was in the cards because of a far-Left agenda.

If the "leave us alone" crowd are truly voting on economic issues alone (to the COMPLETE EXCLUSION of social issues), then they put the knife to their own throat. That's not a very reasoned position.

Otherwise, the "leave us alone" crowd are VERY MUCH voting on BOTH cultural and economic issues and CANNOT demand, with any semblance of reason, that social conservatives abandon issues sacred to them.

This is a case of pot calling kettle black.

M. Simon said...

Actually if you look at the numbers it was Republicans who did not show up at the polls.

And please explain how the shredding of the 4th Amendment by the Drug War exception leads to limited government?

Or consider Drug war violence which is in large part the cause of the anti-2nd Amendment movement?

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than those attending too small a degree of it. - Thomas Jefferson

Or how about the Protestant Social Conservatives who promoted public schools as indoctrination centers to make sure Catholic and Jewish immigrants became "real" Americans? That one kind of got away from them didn't it? Oh they still conform to their original purpose as indoctrination centers. It is just that the lefties are running the show now. I don't see why socons complain so much about the results of their own handiwork.

You would almost think they are blind to cause and effect because their intentions are pure. Remind you of any other political cohort you know?

M. Simon said...

BTW it would be nice if the most principled part of the Republican party actually lived up to at least their economic principles.

Then the rest of us might not think that they lie with respect to having any principles at all.


But I get it: "abortion is murder" is the only principle worth defending. Now what kind of government and laws would be required to put that in action?

Assuming say a drug war type template.


Face it: the social conservatives as a viable National movement are dead. Why? Because they have proven themselves to be liars.

And you know what? Liars don't get no respect.

Sorry about that.

You know what I like about Palin - with respect to social conservatism she leads by example. And with respect to economic conservatism she puts her principles in action.

RavingDave said...

Well MSimon, you paint with a broad brush. I think a fairer statement would be "Many of the politicians that Social Conservatives end up voting for turn out to be liars."

I dare say this is a problem when dealing with politicians of any flavor.

Apart from that, My Senators are Jim Inhofe and Tom Coburn. I personally think they are EXCELLENT senators, and lead the nation in terms of doing exactly what they say they are going to do, and supporting the principles of the majority of people who voted for them.

I am especially proud of Tom Coburn and consider him to be the Best Senator in the US Senate.

Now MSimon, that's the best I can do. If people in other states can't elect decent people, perhaps you should blame them on a case by case basis.


M. Simon said...


I'm familiar with Coburn and he is a good guy.

My guy Manzullo - although not the fiscal hawk that Coburn is was anti-bailout which is a good thing.

As to the rest of them. I'm with you.

Edgar said...


You still haven't acknowleged the fact that the "leave us alone" (LUA) crowd helped to advance a far-Left agenda, simply because they're angry with social conservatives. Admittedly, after reading your commentary, I don't expect you to. That's too bad.

The LUA crowd strained at the proverbial gnat (convictions held by social conservative voters) and swallowed the camel (Obama). Way to go!!! Well, people wanted "change", and oh boy, they're going to get it.

From everything I've read here, the LUA crowd pitched a hissy fit and walked away with the game ball. Those 9 million or so (fickle) votes helped put the most liberal Senator (based on his voting record, worldview, and associations) into the highest elected office in our nation, along with many liberal allies in Congress.

Ironically, during the run up to the election (in your blog posts), YOU reasoned with social conservatives, and ecouraged them to vote for McCain, even though he wasn't (for many) their first pick. He certainly wasn't my first pick, but I voted for him. We showed up.

Again, if the LUA crowd continues to insist that social conservatives were the cause for the GOP's loss, or that they harbor a grudge (as apparently you do) for ALLEGED injustices from more than 60 years ago (a debateable issue), then the LUA crowd has some issues to work out among themselves before we can agree on anything. Economic issues have become irrelevant.

As I said before, economic arguments didn't matter to these people this election, and likely won't in the near future. The economy will have to crater. It'll have to be in shambles (double-digit inflation, double-digit unemployment, and a much lower quality of life) before they realize the HUGE mistake that was made.

The Left's assault on our fundamental rights under the Constituion (especially the 1st and 2nd Amendments) will make any charge you lay against social conservatives entirely insignificant. Just wait till the "Fairness Doctrine" is brought to a vote AGAIN in 2009.

The LUA crowd will wish a thousand times that social conservatives were in charge, once the Left gets through with them.

Of course, this will be true for everyone. The good news is that the GOP will eventually regain control of the White House and Congress, but not until everyone screams uncle...LOUDLY!

I find it amazing that you are so fond of Sarah Palin (a social conservative), when a vast majority of social conservatives today have the same qualities she possesses. Perhaps you've simply had a bad experience with a few malcontents, and THAT has resulted in your sweeping charge against all social conservatives.

Sarah Palin is one of my own. She's an Evangelical Christian, anti-Abortion, Pro-Gun, a limited-government, low-taxation proponent. She's Pro-Coal, Pro-Oil, Pro-Nuclear, Pro-Family, Pro-Military, etc. She is (and others like her are) the future of the social conservative movement. She is the fresh face of the conservative movement that, as you reported, the Left fears. Good! I'm glad to hear it.

The social conservative movement within conservative American politics is very much alive and well. This demographic is growing.

Social conservatives are no more static in their viewpoints than anyone else, and it's sad that the LUA crowd won't take responsibility for their actions this time.

M. Simon said...

The LUA guys did not do what you claim. The Republican Party failed to attract them. Blaming the voters is not going to win elections.

Me? I'm a LUA and voted straight Republican.

M. Simon said...


You are blameing social conservatives for the war on drugs

But Dave they are responsible for the war on drugs.

The Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914 was a product of a progressive/socon alliance. Soon followed in 1920 by alcohol prohibition.

Drug War History

The Harrison Narcotics act did lead to the spread of AIDs because it ultimately lead to the ban of over the counter injection eqpt. and thus shared needles.


It would be really nice if socons were aware of their own history and the disasters they created. It might lead to a little more humility re: the next proposed solution.

Just like the economic socialist their intentions are good and failures never examined. It is one of the reasons I call it Cultural Socialism. Not to mention big government involvement.

The deal is: liberty generally works better. Economic and Cultural.

So to atone for their sins I propose socons lead the way in drug legalization.

M. Simon said...


The LUA crowd still adheres to sound economic principles. It is the Republican practice that they object to.

Calling a pig a fish doesn't make it so.

I'd say the Social Conservatives who currently make up the core of the party have failed morally.

They need to confess their sins and repent.

Neil said...


"confess their sins and repent"?

I understand your anger, but what, exactly, do you think you're accomplishing here? Other than convincing folks that libertarians are just as absolutist as social conservatives, I mean.

We must all hang together, or we shall surely hang separately.

M. Simon said...


I'm a LUA and voted straight Republican. Don't blame me.

What I'm trying to suggest is what the Republicans have to do to get back the other LUA guys.

We are all going to be punished - good and hard - for the sins of our leaders.

Seriously. Rebranding is in order. And it has to be done publicly to change minds.

Edgar said...


It's very simple. The Right voted for McCain, and the Left certainly was NEVER going to vote McCain (or Romney, or Thompson, or Barr, or whomever). So, who does that leave? Who tipped the balance in favor of Obama, and helped to advance a far-Left agenda?

Well, there's only one group remaining. It's the "middle of the road" crowd, the "independents", LUA, or whatever name that's applied to them.

I've advocated unity all along in this discussion, and will continue to do so, but you're logic is VERY faulty on this one. Social conservatives showed up. The majority of social conservatives, if not all, based their decision on VERY sound reasoning: McCain-Palin was a better choice than Obama-Biden.

I applaud the fact that you carried through and voted a straight Republican ticket, and I'm not being sarcastic here. We needed more of that, especially back in 2006, and I agree with Neil that:

"We must all hang together, or we shall surely hang separately."

You said: "The LUA crowd still adheres to sound economic principles." Sorry, not this time around, else those 9 million or so votes would have pulled the lever for McCain.

As for the War on Drugs charge against social conservatives, it's ridiculous. 1914? A piece of legislation from 94 years ago??? Wow!

Whether there's a law (or not) on the books prohibiting the sale and distribution of drugs (opiates, cocaine, etc.), this would not have had the slightest impact on the spread of AIDS here in America.

Those consequences remain squarely on the shoulders of intravenous drug users and the risky sexual behavior crowd. Sure, I can see how people get upset when social conservatives wish them A LONG, HEALTHY, AND PROSPEROUS LIFE, and vote their conscience accordingly. You're right. That's a REALLY bad thing.

Shame on those mean old social conservatives! Shame on them! How dare they suggest such things!

The irony here is that this particular piece of legislation you cite (the Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914) regulates the production, importation, and distribution of opiates. That sounds familiar doesn't it - "...production, importation, and distribution...". Hmmmm...where have I heard that before?

Oh yeah! I remember. It's no longer a "crime" in the eyes of the law to import, produce, distribute, and possess alcohol, but domestic violence, alcoholism, drunk driving, etc. remain with us.

Oh, but it's ok. We're taxing it now, and that makes it alright. Gotta keep those coffers full.

For the record, just so you don't think I'm a hypocrite, I drink too, but could just as easily do without.

Wait a minute! I've got an idea. Maybe we should blame social conservatives because they also advocate the use of...(drum roll)...SEAT BELTS.

Like the spread of AIDS (because of meddling by those mean old authoritarian social conservatives, as you suggest), people also chafe against laws requiring seat belt use. Without a doubt, these same laws (and those who promote their enforcement) have caused countless deaths resulting from illicit non-use.

Yep. Social conservatives should be blamed for automobile deaths resulting from lack of seat belt use. It's really not a stretch, right? is. This is ridiculous too (for anyone just tuning in).

By the way, researchers believe that HIV originated in sub-Saharan Africa during the twentieth century, but AIDS was first recognized by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 1981 and its cause (HIV) identified by scientists in the early 1980s.

So, yeah, I can see how social conservatives directly caused the spread of AIDS (almost 60 years before the disease was identified in the U.S.) simply because they advocated the regulation of addictive drugs legislatively.

I have to tell you that, personally, I haven't thought about a "war on drugs" for more than a decade, and if I'm not thinking about it, it's fair to say that the "war on drugs" isn't a top issue for many social conservatives - legislatively speaking.

Right now, the big things for us are:

1) Keeping more of our hard-earned money with lower taxation, or better yet, repealing the 16th Amendment and establishing a national consumption tax (the FAIR tax)

2)Fighting the rising threat from radical Islam (here and abroad)

3)Protecting our Constitutional right to bear arms

4)Championing LEGAL immigration to our country without the devaluing U.S. citizenship. U.S. citizenship should be the PRIME motivation for coming here with only one allegiance - to THIS country alone.

5)Promoting free-markets for business

6)Defending the rights of the unborn.

7)Preventing judicial activism in our courts by advocating a strict interpretation of our laws. If we want to change something, then we need to do it legislatively.

No. The "war on drugs" is, largely, sooooo 1980s.

That message is fairly well entrenched for many Americans, which is: "CASUAL addictive drug use has far more negative consequences than positive benefits."

Stick a fork in that one. It's done.

I sincerely hope you'll stop grinding this axe with social conservatives, who want the same economic prosperity as you do. If not, oh well...

M. Simon said...


Blaming the voters is not going to win elections.

I'm sorry to tell you this but in politics those least attached to a coalition drive coalition policy.

The Israeli Parliamentary system is a prime example.

In America the coalitions are made before the elections. In a parliamentary system they are made after. The same principles apply though.

Some times I despair that the Republicans will ever understand politics. Oh. Well. Perhaps Obama will teach us the needed lessons. The hard way.

M. Simon said...

Re: the war on drugs.

If you consider financing a huge American criminal class, turning Mexico into a narco state, and being on the verge of losing Afghanistan no negative consequences there is nothing I can do to change your mind.

Reality will have to intervene. I've done all I can with logic and evidence.

M. Simon said...

So tell me. Why doesn't fiscal conservatism dominate the Republican party in practice?

That was a big hole in our armament this last election. And the '06 election as well.

RavingDave said...

M. Simon said...

You are blameing social conservatives for the war on drugs

But Dave they are responsible for the war on drugs.

The Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914 was a product of a progressive/socon alliance. Soon followed in 1920 by alcohol prohibition.

You are making my point for me. If progressives have equal blame with SoCons, then why are we blaming the SoCons and not the Bi-Partisan Coalition ? Why are SoCon's singled out ?


RavingDave said...

M. Simon said...
So tell me. Why doesn't fiscal conservatism dominate the Republican party in practice?

That was a big hole in our armament this last election. And the '06 election as well.

Amen to that Brother ! The only explanation I can think of is "Beltway creep."

Our party DESERVED to get it's ass kicked in both 2008 and 2006.


M. Simon said...

You are making my point for me. If progressives have equal blame with SoCons, then why are we blaming the SoCons and not the Bi-Partisan Coalition ? Why are SoCon's singled out ?

Because 99% of them these days can't imagine ever being allied with socialists.

And why were they allied with socialists? Because both thought government could "fix things" in fact socons still believe government can fix culture.

I'm trying to wise up socons to their roots in Cultural Socialism and trying to make them see it is a bad idea. It is an uphill battle.


BTW I was actually a communist fellow traveler once so there is plenty of blame to go around. But at least I wised up in my lifetime and am now working to reverse my past error.

The Cultural Socialists in the Republican Party have yet to come to their senses - in the main.

However, Palin gets it. So there is hope if the socons don't derail her. Alaskans knew nothing about her position on abortion until she got the VP nod.

Edgar said...


You keep saying: "Blaming the voters is not going to win elections."

Well, why don't you practice that?

It amazes me that you keep trying to twist the truth of what happened this election, and for that matter, what YOU said.

This time around, according to YOU, the LUA crowd was angry at social conservatives, AND DID NOT SHOW UP. Ok...fair enough.

The result of that poor decision is that they helped to advance a far-Left agenda by electing the most liberal Senator in the U.S. Congress to the Presidency, along with his allies in Congress.

You and I agree on one thing: We will ALL suffer mightily because of it.

You need to rethink this, and encourage the LUA crowd to acknowledge their HUGE mistake.

It's really very simple.

The Left was NOT ever going to vote for McCain, the Right (social conservatives) voted FOR McCain, and the middle-of-the-road/LUA crowd largely did NOT vote for McCain (by about 9 million votes), for the reason you state - anger at social conservatives.

Since it is YOU alone who is trying to place blame here, again I ask: Who is to blame? If we must finger someone, it's the "middle-of-the-road" crowd...all because they were angry at social conservatives.

And you are sooooo far off the mark with social conservatives. You really don't understand them in the least. So, let me make this crystal clear:

They do NOT (and NEVER WILL) have a liberal worldview. They are CONSERVATIVE through and through. They are, and will remain, largely Republican until such time that the Republican Party's ideology becomes entirely liberal, both fiscally and socially.

Sorry about that.

The surprising thing is that you keep proclaiming your admiration for Sarah Palin when she is a SOCIAL CONSERVATIVE, and I keep telling you that the VAST MAJORITY of social conservatives hold the same positions and attitudes.

It is YOUR perception that social conservatives "advertise" their convictions with an attitude of "smugness" (your words, not mine), but we all know that:

"Perception becomes reality to the uninformed."

...and you, sir, are soooo uninformed about social conservatives.

You think social conservatives are "smug"? Yes?

Maybe we should add "Smug" Social Conservatives to our cultural lexicon of stereotypes, along with:

1) "Uppity" Blacks
2) "Lazy" Hispanics
3) "Money Grubbing" Jews
4) "Fascist/Nazi" Germans
5) "Sneaky" Asians
6) (Your favorite stereotype here)

...but somehow, it's ok to bash social conservatives for voting their conscience based on convictions sacred to them, especially if they're white, male, and Protestant, right?

By all means, keep grinding that axe.

RavingDave said...

The SoCons see it the other way. The government is interfering with the culture and the SoCons are trying to make them stop doing it.

Welfare for example, paying people to have children outside of marriage cannot POSSIBLY be a good idea. The results were predictable.

This is an example of Government interfering with nature. Government made it possible for people to birth and feed a massive army of helpless hopeless people who turn to crime and drugs in an effort to survive in the social structure which government caused.

The great society program has killed a lot of people and created a lot of new misery that didn't exist before.

This is just one example of government assault on Social Conservatism.


Edgar said...


Thank you! You get it! Exactly right! What you said describes the situation to a tee.

"Government made it possible for people to birth and feed a massive army of helpless hopeless people who turn to crime and drugs in an effort to survive in the social structure which government caused."

Social conservatives see this as government interferance with culture, and the only reason abortion became a hot topic for social conservatives is because the Left "federalized" the issue at the Supreme Court level, and (falsely) claim that it's their Constitutional right to have an abortion. This is why social conservatives advocate LIMITED GOVERNMENT.

The same thing goes for the so-called "separation of Church and State". That language and philosophy does NOT exist anywhere in the U.S. Constitution, but secularists (mostly liberal in their worldview - fiscally and socially) claim otherwise.

Social conservatives see this as an assault on America's history, culture, and Judeo-Christian heritage - an assault that will eventually lead to America's destruction.

We DON'T want the latter to happen.

M. Simon said...


I'm not blaming the voters. I'm blaming the Republican party.

I'm exploring ways to expand the Republican coalition.

Now Palin is as socially conservative as they come. And yet as Governor of Alaska she never brought up the abortion question. Folks in Alaska didn't know where she stood on the issue until she got the VP nod. She has an 80% approval rating in Alaska. That has to include more than a few who are Democrats or vote predominately for Democrats.

I'm suggesting that a similar policy for the Republican Party might expand the coalition.

In fact her leading by example on the abortion question has gained more adherents to the anti-abortion position than all the hectoring by Republican Party stalwarts.

In addition the absolutist position is an entry of Religion into government. Orthodox Jews are allowed by Jewish Law to have abortions up until the 40th day of gestation. Reform Jews of course are quite accepting of the current situation.

In any case a ban on abortion will just drive the practice underground. It will create another black market. i.e. it will finance criminals.

My position is that it is better to keep it in the open so women who are considering such a move can be reached and convinced to do otherwise.

As with all hot button issues we ought to proceed gently. The unintended consequences of drug and alcohol prohibition should be lessons to social conservatives. Banning some things does not mean eliminating them. It simply determines the source of supply.

The Libertarians define the real poles of politics as statists vs those who favor liberty. I'm a small government guy. I'm anti-statist. I'm a small government conservative. I'm against the state interfering in economics and culture.

And note the attempt by social conservatives to preserve American culture brought us the public school system. How did that work out?

I'm for leaving as much as possible to the people. Properly informed most people will make the right decision. Of course statist by definition do not trust the people. And that lack of trust is returned in kind.

Something I read recently said that both parties are losing adherents due to tending towards the extremes. Republicans might want to reconsider.

You might also note that despite the Catholic Church "campaigning" for the anti-abortion party, and despite the pro abortion party running a candidate with the most extreme position on that subject, the pro abortion party got 54% of the Catholic vote.

Being the anti-abortion party is not even a winner among those who should be most disposed to vote for it. The result? The most socialist anti-American President since FDR. And unlike FDR he is not interested in defending America. We are so screwed.

M. Simon said...

The result of that poor decision is that they helped to advance a far-Left agenda by electing the most liberal Senator in the U.S. Congress to the Presidency, along with his allies in Congress.

Perhaps they valued cultural liberty over economic liberty.

Just as you value cultural coercion over cultural liberty. In return you got economic coercion. Was it a fair trade off for you? Only you can decide.

People make choices. Not always rational choices. At least by the view of others.

BTW Republicans lost single women, those most likely to value abortion, by 65 to 35. That was probably the margin of victory since other groups were more evenly divided.

Palin shows the way forward. Don't drive those folks away from voting Republican. You may then not get your cultural wishes but at least you would have more economic liberty. For me economic liberty and a strong National Defense predominated. I voted accordingly. Evidently there were not enough in the LUA crowd who saw it my way.

M. Simon said...

That's the hook the Democrats use, and it is about as logical as voting for the candidate who has more sex appeal. But it works. That lesbian in San Jose may have had trouble sleeping as she thought about Newt Gingrich's plans to destroy her family. (And I hasten to add, there are probably heterosexual counterparts who believe the people on the other side are out to destroy their families, for reasons equally irrational.)

Few people take the time to think about the reasons, but Republicans are much more feared than the Democrats. I've often thought about how ridiculous this is, because the main reason that Republicans are feared involves silly peripheral issues over which their hands are tied and they can do basically nothing. Assume all Republicans are a bunch of homophobic bigots who think a woman's place is in the home and that everyone should attend church on Sunday. I realize it's not the case, but assume it is. They can't do any of these things. They can't restrict homosexuality, they can't criminalize abortion, and they cannot pass sexist laws. So even if the religious right monolithically opposes sexual freedom, they can't do much more than join up with certain forces on the left to attempt to get the FCC to harass Howard Stern. (But they couldn't even do that, because Stern moved outside their jurisdiction to satellite radio.)

The fear of the religious right is thus largely irrational -- even if you think they're loony tunes on some of these issues.

Imbalanced fear


Winning politics is about damping down fear and raising up hope.

I'm proposing giving up issues that raise fear and where the Republicans can't actually get their program enacted. Heresy to be sure. Still it all depends on what you value most.

How Republicans deal with those fear inducing issues will determine whether they spend 4 years in the wilderness or forty.

e said...

I think also the group who became the democratic illuminati are a group who thought that Obama would offer them something. We're all selfish to some degree, but there's no way to make everyone happy at the same time. It will be interesting to see how much he actually tries.

RavingDave said...

I think it is a mistake to assume that the Majority of Democrat voters have any coherent philosophy and vote for this or that reason. I see evidence time and again that most Democrat voters are knee jerk, reactionary, uninformed, and mostly a mob.

Of course they come in all flavors, and some of them are very well educated, thoughtful, informed, and just basically evil.
(like william ayres)

As Reagan Said, "the problem with our opponents is not that they are uninformed. It's the fact that they know so much that isn't so..."

The Mob Democrat voters can be easily led around by the right type of sound bites and the right type of media coverage and presentation. Hence Reagan, Hence Clinton, Hence Obama.

Howard Stern and others demonstrated in video interview of Obama Voters that they are basically ignorant and stupid and only voted for Obama because they Like him. Not because he has good ideas.


M. Simon said...


One other point. We could improve the viability of Black neighborhoods by ending the de facto shooting war in them.

M. Simon said...

RDave says:

Welfare for example, paying people to have children outside of marriage cannot POSSIBLY be a good idea. The results were predictable.

Totally agree. So why aren't the socons fighting this instead of being distracted by gay marriage?

I'm going to cross post a comment I made at CV:

To a socon:

Divorce killed marriage. Along with punitive sanctions against the male partner.

So let me make a list:

1. Revised divorce laws
2. The welfare state
3. The drug war

Gays getting married are the least of your problems.

Or to put it differently: you are fighting a rear guard action against a distraction. That distraction prevents you from doing any thing about the major attacks. Gays will get their marriage while you do nothing about 1 through 3 listed above.

Or to put it another way. It is May 1940 - all your best forces are concentrated in Holland and Belgium while the main attack is coming through the Ardennes. Ultimate result: collapse.

M. Simon said...

Socons do have a social policy/intellectual tradition.

1. Government schools as indoctrination centers
2. Alcohol prohibition to cure alcoholism
3. Drug prohibition to cure drug addiction

Due to #1 their culture is being destroyed.

Due to #2 their social policies are discredited

Due to #3 the Black family is being put out of business.

#3 is explained here:


If they want to preserve their culture their best hope is smaller government. Every time they have used government as an instrument of culture their losses far exceeded their gains. But like Pharaoh they are a stubborn lot and they harden their hearts to change.

I'm still waiting for even one socon to come out and say: using the government to defend our culture has gained us short term success and long term disaster.

The harder socons fight gays the more punitive gays will be when they get the upper hand. So the best thing to do in that case is to not fight. In fact working with gays would get them reasonable compromises. But you know the authoritarian mind set: no compromise. My way or the highway.

I really am trying to help them reach their goals. Their rigidity is doing them in. They have made the government the arbiter of religion. Well some one else now controls government and the arbitration is based on their religion.

And yet socons deride the "wall of separation". Something if they embraced it would protect them. Not my religion. Not yours.

I think it will take another 20 years of losses (a new generation) before they get it. Maybe not even then.