Angry Youth! Blog

February 10, 2008

Compromise-The Bane of Modern Political Parties

My great US History teacher Ron Cunningham quizzed us once on what three principles the Constitution was drafted on. I got the question wrong-the answer was “compromise, compromise, and compromise.” This makes sense-opposite ends of the spectrum, the Federalists and Democrat-Republicans, were arguing about political philosophy. The Federalists wanted a strong federal government and weak states rights. The Democrat-Republicans wanted the opposite.
But in case you haven’t noticed, we already have a Constitution. It works great. Our job is to interpret it. How you interpret the Constitution forms of your political leaning, which determines your position on issues. It’s not the other way around.
If you believe in less federal government and more states rights, and are hostile to spending and taxes, you’re conservative. If you believe there should be more government and less states rights, and approve of higher taxes and spending, you’re liberal.
From there you have sub-categories-centrists and independents have no underlying political philosophy but address issues and candidates individually. On the far right are the libertarians, who believe the government should only exist to protect the citizens from each other. On the far left are the progressives, who believe the government should serve the people. There are obviously several different political philosophies in the US but these are the main ones.
But where do today’s Democrat and Republican parties fit into these political philosophies? They don’t. They’ve compromised their core beliefs in hopes to get independent votes and have destroyed their political base in the process.
The Democrat party has suffered the lesser of the two. Their ancestors are the Federalists. They were based in the Industrial north, while their opponents the Democrat-Republicans were based in the agrarian South. The same trend exists today.
The highlight of the modern Democratic party was the New Deal. The ultra-liberal programs that FDR engineered to help the country out of depression are rarely disapproved of. The core party remained the same through the seventies. Then two things happened-the unpopular Vietnam War, escalated by Democrat President Lyndon Johnson, and the rise Ronald Reagan.
Reagan rocked the independent vote and made the Democrats change their strategy. He appealed as a friendly approachable guy, a grandfather you could look up to. More important was that he appealed to the religious voters. He was not conservative-he introduced social security and raised taxes. This began decades of Republican domination of the increasing hordes of Evangelists and “family values” voters.
The Democrats responded by simply opposing whatever unpopular things the Republicans did. They sculpted themselves into the cultured, smarter, more worldly party that remains today. Their core base still exists but many of their positions have changed-they have got ten the US involved in every major war in the twentieth century besides the first Iraq war. They favor abolishing programs, cutting spending and reducing US military world presence. They no longer enforce strong government control on moral issues because the Republicans do that.
The Republican party is a disaster. Reagan made a bet to get elected-he left the shrinking niche of conservative voters and appealed to a new niche-family values voters. A political leaning not based on political philosophy had entered the mainstream.
Families and religious voters flocked to these new Republicans. It began a Republican domination of the White House and Congress. The term for these Republicans is “neoconservative.”
The damage is massive. Fiscal conservatives are now a dying breed-the Democrats are traditionally a spending party. The Republicans have totally ditched their traditional limited spending-I don’t have to remind you how much the Iraq War has cost. Both parties favor strong federal government and federal bans on moral issues. Either you’re a liberal favoring a strong central government or a neocon favoring strong central government.
A neocon is not conservative. They have no underlying political philosophy. They please the corporations that fund them and the church-goers that adore them. They take a stand on issues case-by-case so hypocrisy runs amok. They must be viewed as the party with ideals and morals so they aren’t allowed to change their minds. This betrayal of values has created the modern mainstream Republican party. It’s plagued by foolish foreign policy, out-of-control spending and cowtowing to moral values voters has created a trainwreck quickly losing support.
Despite Bush’s fantastic criticisms, the mainstream Republican party will not back down-same platform, same bad ideas, same trainwreck. Voters are STILL getting duped by the GOP’s false logic about terrorism, national security and the economy. Worse, they believe claiming to have moral values will make you a better president. Almost every Republican candidate claims to have “moral values” which have been historically irrelevant.
Fortunately, many independents are leaving the party. The Democrats are playing the “Not Bush or anything like him” card and it’s working. The public thirst for change has twisted this election into a contest for two things-competence and change. Whoever can harness both will win the election.
Perhaps now the Republicans will come to their senses and realize their once-potent claims of family values aren’t being valued. The damage will continue if the party doesn’t go back to its conservative roots.
The party needs a true conservative with a clean background with real experiece. This country needs someone that can control spending, limit the government and pull out of Iraq.

I’ll give you three guesses who.


1 Comment »

  1. hey maybe you can answer this for me since you seem pretty astute. is this a spoof or real? John McCain

    Comment by liz bessent — February 14, 2008 @ 2:48 am

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