The Republican Leadership Deserves Only Contempt

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English: Crude drawing of the "No RINO&qu...

English: Crude drawing of the “No RINO” buttons used by American Republicans. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The reaction of mainstream Republicans to Mr. Romney‘s claim that Mr. Obama’s campaign was based on promises of gifts to people by the government may as well have been the reaction of Democrats. Mr. Romney, as well as Rush Limbaugh who referred to “Obama Claus,” were roundly condemned by the majority of Republicans who spoke up. Mr. Limbaugh is correct when he says that the Republicans are trying to get a piece of the vote of those people dependent on the government. As he recognizes, this is a pipe dream.

Republicans have degenerated into the party that says, “We’ll keep the programs the Democratic Party offers, but we will cut funds programs so they will financially survive in the future.” Americans tend not to think about the future. The typical young American today looks at the present and how to gain as much pleasure in life with the least effort possible. If that means not getting a job and living off government welfare, so be it. Beneficiaries of federal welfare programs want their money and food stamps now, and they want as much money as possible now. The hell with future generations. These individuals live for today. Like the corrupt emperors of the later Roman Empire, Mr. Obama and the Democratic Party keep their power by giving the people “bread and circuses.” The Republicans are kidding themselves if they think that offering fewer bread and circuses for the good of abstract “future generations” will move the self-centered contemporary government dependent person one bit. Those Republicans who condemned Mr. Romney, such as Karl Rove and his fellow consultants, do not deserve to keep their jobs–there predictions of the outcome of the general election were among the most inaccurate since the “Dewey Defeats Truman” headline in 1948. After Mr. Jindal condemned Mr. Romney, I will not support him if he runs for the Republican nomination. If the Republican Party turns to the left on welfare, immigration, and social issues, I–and many other conservatives–will vote for a third party. Personally I am sick and tired of cowardly Republicans, some of which are not sincere about their alleged conservatism on social issues, giving ground on economic issues and immigration as well. Mr. Ron Paul was one example of a man of integrity who refused to compromise his convictions for the favor of liberals, the press, or Hollywood. Yet he only received a small percentage of the Republican vote in the primaries, and the Republican National Committee treated his delegates with disrespect, refusing to seat some of them at the Republican National Convention. Now some want to eliminate the Iowa Straw Poll because of the influence of Paul supporters. Keep up the good work, Republicans, and see how many conservatives vote Libertarian or Constitution Party next election–or just stay home.

Conservatives (and I am not talking about “Neoconservatives” who are, in effect, Neoliberals”) need to get their message across in the political realm while still realizing that politics is not the means to salvation. We must work to change people’s hearts–one person at a time. Needless to say, that means we should set a good example in our own lives. If one person, one family, one community at a time we can influence people to see the harm that liberalism does, we may make progress. Conservatives within the Republican Party should hold the line as much as possible, but if they are driven out, a viable third party coalition should be considered. Forget the Neocons and the Rockefeller “Country Club Republicans.” A coalition of social conservatives, traditional conservatives in the Russell Kirk vein, and some libertarians that are not mere libertines might be workable. Ron Paul reached out to different groups outside how own libertarian standpoint, especially on opposition to the American Empire–and this is a position to which American Conservatism should return. The Republicans are the party of empire, and the Democrats, being mainly Wilsonian, are the same. Surely some viable group of people willing to bring about real change can end a situation in which one party is only a pale shadow of the other. If the Republican Party wants to survive as a viable force in American life, it must get new leadership–conservative leadership and not wimps who back down from every attack from the predominately leftist press. The current Republican leadership deserves only contempt.

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Romney’s Convention Blundering with Ron Paul Delegates

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Ron Paul, member of the United States House of...

Ron Paul, member of the United States House of Representatives from Texas. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Romney

Romney (Photo credit: Talk Radio News Service)

Mitt Romney has done what I had feared in an earlier post: he has supported excluding Ron Paul delegates from Maine from the Republican National Convention and has denied Ron Paul a voice at the convention. Ron Paul delegates, who won the Maine caucuses according to the established rules of the Republican Party in that state, are understandably angry. As someone who voted for Ron Paul in the North Carolina Primary, reading about the way his delegates have been treated by Mr. Romney and his supporters is deeply troubling. To win the presidential election, Mr. Romney needs all the votes he can get. By treating Paul delegates in a disrespectful way, he alienates millions of Paul supporters in the United States. Most likely those among Paul supporters who may have considered “voting for the lesser of evils” in the presidential election may decide to vote Libertarian or Constitution Party instead of voting for Mr. Romney. Frankly I would not blame them.

My feelings are mixed. On the one hand, I not believe a second Obama administration would be good for the country. Although it may turn out that Republicans do not have the will to reduce spending significantly, especially given their support of American interventionism abroad, the Democrats would be far worse. Mr. Obama has continued Mr. Bush’s aggressive foreign policy, and Mr. Bush’s restraints on civil liberty have been enhanced under the Obama administration. Mr. Obama’s unlimited support of abortion, even up to the ninth month (partial-birth abortion can be performed at that state) is morally reprehensible. In addition, Mr. Obama supports a bigger government and stronger regulation, regulation that I have experienced directly at the university where I teach. The government is adding more offenses for which the university can be fined. Such regulation and massive government spending has hurt small businesses. Unlike many academics, I know personally a number of small businesspeople in my area. They have all told me that they believe their businesses will go under if Mr. Obama is re-elected.

Yet the Republicans are even more aggressive in foreign policy than the Democrats, at least rhetorically. Practically I believe that will make little difference. Ron Paul is the only candidate who opposes American intervention abroad unless it is clearly in support of American interests. His opposition to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars has brought down the wrath of so-called “mainstream” Republicans and Neoconservatives as well as the wrath of Wilsonian Democrats. Although it is a good thing that Mr. Ryan wants to cut domestic spending, he is still enamored with the Roosevelt-Johnson welfare state. Mr. Paul rejects the welfare state in principle. Although there are fiduciary relationships with Social Security and Medicare, allowing the states to deal with such matters can allow those in need to continue to receive help.

I suppose, at this point, I will bite the bullet and vote for Mr. Romney. If the country is in intractable decline, which it will be under the two major parties, at least Mr. Romney might slow the decline. I also am deeply concerned about the Obama Administration’s attitude toward religious freedom and its radical moral agenda. As such, I am at a practical level forced to vote for a candidate who can win the general election.
In any case, I am not a libertarian but a traditional conservative, somewhere between Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul. I can swallow hard and vote for Mr. Romney despite his bad behavior now.

However, other Paul supporters, angry at how they have been treated by the Romney campaign, will vote for the libertarian candidate for president. Some traditional conservatives who are fans of Mr. Paul will vote Constitution Party. Others will not vote at all, and some may even vote for Mr. Obama. Frankly I cannot understand Mr. Romney’s behavior. Perhaps he wishes to act in a decisive manner, but to act decisively against his own self-interest is unwise. I would recommend that he make a peace offering to Mr. Paul and his supporters before his behavior costs him the general election and plunges the United States into rapid ruin.

The Republican Establishment Needs to Respect Ron Paul

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Congressman Ron Paul at an event hosted in his...

Congressman Ron Paul at an event hosted in his honor at CPAC 2011 in Washington, D.C. Please attribute to Gage Skidmore if used elsewhere. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Republican establishment has never liked Ron Paul. The warmongering Neoconservatives that control the party dislike his opposition to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. The Rockefeller country club Republicans (who make up the RINOs–Republicans in Name Only) dislike his libertarianism and his support for small government. Mr. Paul has been busy gaining delegates to the Republican National Convention. Of course Mitt Romney will be the nominee, but Mr. Paul would like some say on the platform and wants a voice at the convention. Now in caucus states, if more Paul supporters show up, he gets more delegates. If the Republicans in those states do not like the results, they should change the system. What they have been doing, however, is challenging the legitimacy of the delegates that Mr. Paul won under the rules of the caucus states fair and square. The Establishment has voiced disdain for Paul’s views and have labeled him as an extremist. What is so extreme about him? He wants small government. The Republican establishment claims that it wants small government, but they really want what the Democrats want without spending quite as much money. Mr. Paul opposes abortion; so has every Republican Party Platform since 1976 (even with Mr. Ford, who supported abortion rights, as the nominee in 1976). Mr. Paul supports a national interest foreign policy–that is not an isolationist position, but it suggests that foreign entanglements should be regarded with caution and with proper concern taken for American interests.Mr. Paul opposes government surveillance of American citizens. Since when did that become a radical position?

Now many Ron Paul supporters would vote for Mr. Romney if he and the Republican establishment would show them respect, let them keep the delegates they earned in states where they won the caucuses, and allow them to have a voice at the Republican National Convention. If the Republican establishment continues its present course, they will guarantee four more years of Mr. Obama. What is frightening is that the powers that be in the Republican Party despise Mr. Paul and his followers so much that they are apparently willing to risk losing the presidential election. Sadly, the Republican party has become a tent of warmongering Neoconservatives, Premillenialist Fundamentalist Christians to whom Israel can do no wrong, Red State Fascists who want no limits on federal police power, and RINO country clubbers. Hopefully if there are voices of reason in these groups, they will listen to what Mr. Paul and his followers, many who are young and energetic, want to say. If not, the Republican Party will slowly die a well-deserved death.