Another (excellent) post-mortem
From American Thinker last week comes this excellent article that I think captures our angst and how to plan for the future. "The Only Clear Road Back for Republicans" (in its entirety):
To better comprehend why Democrats will be holding wild who's-your-daddy raves in Washington, D.C. while Republicans shed tears in their beers over the next few years, it's useful to consider the key difference between the parties.
Democrats can never deliver the bevy of freebies they have promised in perpetuity to all their unwitting supporters. Try as they will, the federal gravy train will eventually derail. It's inevitable. However, that unassailable fact doesn't give Democrats the least bit of pause as they gleefully up the ante of giveaways election after election. If politics is ultimately about winning, then you have to give them credit for that.
It's axiomatic -- at least to me -- that Republicans can easily build a winning majority by boldly espousing and adopting policies in line with the principles the party has always claimed to represent -- life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. America has survived for more than 230 years because of those principles, but for some reason, Republicans consistently decline to loudly and proudly proclaim them come election time -- and then, when it's applicable, follow through on them once in power.
That's why Barack Obama was re-elected despite the unprecedented economic headwinds he faced and why Mitt Romney was sent packing home to Massachusetts or wherever he lives (strange, but that was never made clear). Obama and his team fought passionately for their beliefs -- unsustainable though they are. Romney and his boys went cutesy, foregoing a more advantageous ideological battle for one focused on banal niceties. Turns out nice guys really do finish last.
Our opponents on the left live in a world of political fantasy. Five million green jobs that can't be exported overseas. Government can miraculously cure recessions by borrowing and taxing trillions out of the private sector and reinserting the money where it deems fit. Bureaucrats can create a vast number of new jobs by drastically increasing what employers have to pay workers.
Those of us on the right live in a world of economic reality: you cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. Cutting taxes and reducing government spending and regulation always boost the economy. Government isn't the solution to our problems; government is the problem.
With little to impede the rollout of ObamaCare (thank you, Chief Justice Roberts) and the coming wave of higher taxes, crippling regulations, higher gas prices, rising household expenses, and the near-certainty that Iran will go fully nuclear, Republicans can be forgiven for grousing that the game is up. It's understandable why so many think the election was stolen, are considering a third party, or are contemplating secession. Those thoughts may be comforting, but they are flights of fancy, no more rooted in reality than what the Democrat rank and file have been hoodwinked into believing by party leaders.
The despair on the right is real, but it needs to be tempered with a little optimism from the knowledge that reality always in the end trumps fantasy. That's one of the unassailable facts of life. We're clearly right, and they are demonstrably wrong, which is a great starting point to begin rebuilding after suffering any kind of setback in life.
Because we are so right and they are so wrong, we have to in the future choose candidates who deeply believe that as a first principle...and are not afraid to loudly and proudly declare it as so, no matter how viciously they may be attacked by the usual suspects on the left. You may have heard of the last Republican presidential candidate to do so -- Ronald Reagan. As I recall, he didn't do too badly come election time.
Because we are so right and they are so wrong, we don't need to go off half-cocked and fundamentally start revamping our party's message and ideology in order to attract blacks, Latinos, and Asians. We need to slip around the racial and ethnic gatekeepers of the left and speak directly to minorities with conservatives who look like them to sell them on the virtues of conservatism in a manner that's sensitive and culturally relevant.
I don't like losing, but I can live with it. Hell, I'm a fan of the Dallas Cowboys, who have won only one playoff game in sixteen years. What I can't live with, though, is losing without putting forth my best effort. That's what happened on November 6. So for all my conservative friends out there who've been saddled up to the bar with tears in their eyes since -- the joint is closed. Once more unto the breach. If we're going to lose this country to those who don't share our beliefs, then let's not do so timidly and silently. I say we go out with the panache of British soccer hooligans, fighting tooth and nail for the side we belong to and believe in.