Saturday, October 11, 2008

The Death of True Conservatives

One trend we have seen during this election cycle has been the seeming extinction of old time conservatives in favor of the neo-con movement that brought us eight awful years of W's governing (and in their perfect world would give us Sarah Palin as President of the United States in 2012). Even though I definitely lean to the left on all non-economic issues and will generally cast my vote for Democrats because of this, I greatly respect the old time fiscal conservatives who want smaller government (I was actually opposed to the Bailout Bill that Congress recently passed). However, today's neo-cons lack not only the intellectual capacity to deal with many of today's complex issues both here and abroad but also deviate away from the small government ideals that made their party (Repubicans) a legitimate alternative for those pocketbook voters who prefer smaller central government. Quoting Mike, the one conservative voice on our blog, about his thoughts during the Republican convention: "Those clowns in Minnesota do not represent me." For the betterment of this country, I hope that conservatives either shun the neo-con principles that have corrupted Republicans or break away from this faction and form their own party that gives a legitimate voice to people who may disagree with liberal policies but do not want to be boxed in as "stereotypical Joe Sixpacks."


Mike said...
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Mike said...

Neo-conservatives can probably best be described as social conservatives, fiscal liberals.

It's basically a thought process of, "We'll say all the right things on social issues to fire up the base, but that won't be enough to win. We need to be liked too."

So we can't go around saying more principled things like "Get rid of the Dept. of Education" or "Get rid of the National Endowment for the Arts" (Both former positions of the Republican Party, and both positions that I have a lot of sympathy with, since neither of those departments have any authority in the Constitution or have really shown to be anything close to an efficient use of resources.)

However, this has proven a popular course of action because sound bytes like "Republicans cut off funding for kids" or "Republicans hate art" come across really devastatingly effective in campaigns. When in reality, what if the money given to the DOE just to run its own bureaucracy was re-allocated to each state's respective department of education? Would they hate kids then? It's the same money with less bureaucracy, being administered by officials more local to their respective problems. Schools in inner city- Chicago and schools in rural Kansas do not have the same problems. To presume to govern them all from Washington is absurd.

It's been sound-byted to death, and today's Republican seems far more concerned about being liked than being principled. The end result is they are neither.