Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

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December 19, 2006

Why The Republicans Lost Part V

by Doug Mataconis

Michael Gerson, a former policy advisor and speech writer for President Bush, looks at the results of November’s elections, and concludes that the GOP should abandon it’s limited government philosophy:

Campaigning on the size of government in 2008, while opponents talk about health care, education and poverty, will seem, and be, procedural, small-minded, cold and uninspired. The moral stakes are even higher. What does antigovernment conservatism offer to inner-city neighborhoods where violence is common and families are rare? Nothing. What achievement would it contribute to racial healing and the unity of our country? No achievement at all. Anti-government conservatism turns out to be a strange kind of idealism—an idealism that strangles mercy.

No, the idealism comes from those who look at the state and see the solution to all of our problems, despite the fact that history demonstrates over and over again that there are just some things that the government is incapable of doing correctly.

If this is the future of the GOP, then Bob Barr may not be the only one leaving.
Previous Posts:

Why The Republicans Lost
Why The Republicans Lost Part II
Why The Republicans Lost Part III
Why The Republicans Won’t Recover
Why Republicans Need Libertarians
Why The Republicans Lost Part IV


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5 Comments

  1. “What does antigovernment conservatism offer to inner-city neighborhoods where violence is common and families are rare? Nothing. What achievement would it contribute to racial healing and the unity of our country?”

    Jesus. Explain to me how that is in anyway different from something I might hear coming out of a Democratic strategist’s mouth.

    Goldwater and Reagan weep.

    Comment by mike — December 19, 2006 @ 10:01 am
  2. And just how did violence become common and families rare in the inner city? Great Society, maybe?

    Yeah. Great frakking society.

    Comment by Ken — December 19, 2006 @ 1:40 pm
  3. Drugs!!!
    There are more families than you think.
    This is how myths affects policy. Policy bring myths into reality. Another myth that the Great Society had an devastating effect on the poor. It probably had little effect. It didn’t bring drugs and it certainly didn’t design crack cocaine. (marijuana is cheap, but couldn’t have people smoking that) Many working people were the first to fall victim to this drugs. The drugs brought illegal guns and anyone in the neighborhood can buy one, including children. Fear and stress has brought more violence. Guns have also empowered the psyche, so violence erupts when someone has something to prove. You can blame that on history.
    Generally most people are clueless, regardless of political affiliation; when is comes to the racial divide. One thing though, a good start would not always refer to black people’s failings.

    Comment by VRB — December 19, 2006 @ 3:23 pm
  4. Hey VRB, it’s not just drugs and the War on Drugs. They have contributed in huge part to the institutionalization of poverty in the inner city. However, the New Deal and the Great Society are not innocent either. There is plenty of evidence that government welfare programs contribute to creating ceilings on wealth for the poor. It is also true that other wars on victimless crimes contribute to the problems. As does, sad to say, “affirmative action”. The best way to free the inner city of poverty is the one way we will not try, get the government the hell out of the intervention business. Make sure the playing field is level for all people and let them compete. Turn off the Drug War. Turn off the prosecution of victimless crimes. Chase down actual criminals who are violating others life, liberty and property.

    Comment by Adam Selene — December 19, 2006 @ 5:20 pm
  5. May be the government programs were detrimental by default. Where I grew up the Great society Programs were riddled with fraud and outright theft. The poor did not see any of those programs come to fruition. As with any program including the military, there are always business that spring up, just to bid on the contracts. (It boggles my mind that the next jet fighter will cost 82 million dollars a piece.)Our culture define what was right for people on welfare, the poor were down upon and the lowest values were upheld. During the welfare reform, such business sprung up again. One company charged ten times as much to train a person, than if they had sent that person to a community college. We would rather train that person for a useless job because they are poor and therefore not deserving, than to educate that person. This happened when this state had a Republican governor and legislature. So I don’t think we can blame the Democrats for all of societies problems.

    During my lifetime, I have seen so many blacks deprived.(ones that were qualified) I don’t think in another 100 years affirmative action would right any of that lost potential. So I can’t discuss it. You see not every black person was a share cropper and many have three generations of college graduates. You could only have so many doctors, lawyers, teachers, morticians and ministers. Others left the south, some others like my Dad worked in the Feds mail room as a clerk with a bachelors degree in science. Fortunately he was able to change jobs as the times changed, but many others before him never made it.

    Comment by VRB — December 19, 2006 @ 8:50 pm

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