I'm not at all sure that foxfire really wishes a realistic or non-dogmatic discussion related to the decline of the Republican party's standing and electoral chances, but that's what ought to filling these pages. Do you folks on the right here desire an open and honest appraisal or merely to fold yourselves into the comfort of self-certainty, avoiding reflection where it discomfits? I would advise you to begin from an hypothesis that some of your fundamental and cherished ideas are wrong or are unbalanced or are not so broadly shared as you have assumed or been told.
There's an obvious precedent here to help you pause and take a careful survey... if you hold that during the sixties the left in america (and elsewhere, for that matter) became too extreme in certain ideological positions and, in their arrogant self-certainty, didn't even realize they had moved seriously beyond the citizens' consensus
, then you have a good working model for what your present situation might well be. There are indications that such an awareness is dawning. Fox herself includes significant modern conservative voices within what she calls 'the radical right' and Asherman suggests that the party's problem (and the movement's problem) is that it has moved too far right.
I actually hope you guys take a while to figure this all out because the US needs time now to undo a lot that's been done and which has been seriously detrimental. I want you to continue to be too extreme (outside popular consensus) in your thinking and speech and acts for a while longer. And I'm confident you will be.
But sooner or later, it would be better if you got a hell of a lot smarter about all this because one-party-rule, by either side, isn't going to work if america wants to function as a real democracy. And that's the first thing you have to fully and honestly face, because you haven't been facing it at all, quite aside from predictable lip service to the theory of it.
Modern american movement conservatism holds, as a fundamental premise
(let's call it Premise One), that proper american values, traditions and political philosophy are understood and maintained ONLY within and by their own movement. If someone is outside the movement, he has it wrong as a simple matter of axiomatic truth. Conservatism = true Americanism whereas Non-Conservatism = the other, the wrong, the deluded, the unpatriotic, the traitorous, the perverse, the bad, the improper.
If you do not recognize that what I've just written is both highly accurate and seriously dangerous to democracy not to mention your own personal rationality, then you are a modern movement conservative and you are a species on the brink and deserving to be there.
Let's look at foxfires first post starting off this discussion.
It has been widely speculated that President Bush and the GOP fell into widespread disfavor and lost majority control of Congress when they abandoned basic conservative principles.
As I pointed out earlier that "widely speculated" is either misworded or it is guilty of precisely the sort of dogmatic myopia I've just been talking about. There is no speculation or argument of this sort arising anywhere at all outside of movement conservatism. Within the movement, it is widespread. And it is entirely predictable that it would be because of Premise One. The movement won't be in error or won't have it wrong. Because it is True and Right
. The only possible failures must arise from having fallen away from movement values, traditions and philosophy.
It is a given that most American liberals didn't like President Bush to begin with and didn't vote for Republicans for Congress either. Therefore, it can be concluded that the GOP lost power when it violated those issues most important to their base generally imbedded in an ideology known as modern Conservatism.
It took until the second paragraph for "liberal" to arrive. And arrive it must because it is the umbrella term used within the new conservative movement to scarlet letter "the other". Everything that is 'wrong' with america, everything which is non-american reflects some aspect of liberalism. But what's interesting in this paragraph is something else...the formulation that GOP losses in power have occured as a consequence of the GOP not being sufficiently aligned with conservative movement values, traditions and philosophies. There's no allowance possible that GOP losses might be a consequence of the movement itself. Further, there's the obviously foolish notion that the movement conservatives, by themselves, determine electoral results. Party strategists such as Rove do not suffer this delusion because they can't afford to.
As a replacement for the "Bush aftermath" thread which is drawing to a close, perhaps this thread could be a place where we could discuss where conservatives got it right, where we went wrong, what we need to do to regain the confidence of the Conservative base, and other GOP/Conservative issues.
I've just told you where you got and still get it wrong. You don't "need to regain the confidence of the Conservative base". You need to regain the confidence of everyone else and that can never happen while everyone else is guilty of improper or profane americanism.