Not since 1984 has the Republican Party nominated an actual true-blue conservative candidate for the Presidency. And not since the Contract With America has the Republican Party advocated and pushed for a solid conservative agenda. The notion that the GOP or its nominees and elected officials is the face of conservativism is false. This notion seems to ignore the fact conservativsm itself was launched quite outside of and in spite of the Republican Party itself. Meanwhile, the nevertrump leadership consists of an alliance of pro-open borders and illegal amnesty psuedo-conservatives and feckless but sincere conservatives who don’t recognize the true nature of our real enemy.
Today people like Mitt Romney and the Bushes are bitterly opposing the candidacy of one Donald J. Trump. And they are doing so on the grounds that he does not represent the Party’s values or conservatism. Suddenly the very people who sought to discard the social conservative agenda and water down the fiscal conservative agenda through backroom deals with liberals are interested in “purity.”
We see Paul Ryan, a failed Speaker of the House whose own conservative bona fides are virtually nil, struggling with endorsing Mr. Trump and demanding Trump prove his own fidelity to some allegedly conservative agenda which Ryan himself has betrayed. In fact, one suspects that what Paul Ryan REALLY wants is for Trump to convert to his own open-borders, illegal amnesty agenda and his willingness to give in to liberal demands. (The man has reduced the entire Jack Kemp program to an appeal for open borders and illegal amensty and a free trade regimen that is not free and that disfavors the US but favors multinational corporate elites.)
The voices of talking heads with dwindling followings, including Greg Gutfield (who denies the validity of social conservatism), Erick Erickson (who accepted the media’s color labels), and Glenn Beck (who has already declared himself a libertarian), are a noise of constant protest. They now claim to be the gatekeepers of conservatism and are threatening to blacklist or punish any conservatives who dare to support Mr. Trump. They are joined by mostly pro-amensty center-rightists whose agenda seems to favor multinational corporate elites and international bankers.
And so, one one hand, we have the center-right crowd who are social liberals that want amnesty and on the other you have more ideologically pure talking heads who, so far, have failed to lead any kind of conservative resurgence, and that at great expense to the movement. Fake conservatives allied with feckless conservatives have led us for too long into constant defeat. And now they demand submission to their leadership or they threaten consequences on the recalcitrant. Claiming, all of them, the mantle of highest authority, they excoriate anyone who does not render to them their claimed due.
The supine posture of the Republican Party’s “leadership” in the House and Senate and the Bush legacy of constant compromise with liberals has tarnished the Republican brand for decades. And now, suddenly, the election of another smooshy pseudo-conservative liberal, Mr Trump, is the biggest threat EVER? Now conservatives must disavow Trump even if it causes Clinton to win to prove their loyalty to their “principles”, principles long betrayed by almost all of the NeverTrump crowd?
Modern conservatism did not start in the Republican Party and it won’t end there, regardless of what happens to that Party. Neither the Bushes nor Trump represent conservatism. Certainly Erick Erickson doesn’t represent conservatism, though he is more or less conservative. In fact, of those in the NeverTrump crowd whom we might refer to as “conervative”, almost none have been effective leaders: we know this because not since 1984 has a conservative won the GOP nomination for President!
Conservatism is not all about globalist prsueo “free trade” (enforced by international regulations that stifle ACTUAL free trade and free markets) coupled with international banking rooted in currency legerdemain and amnesty for illegals to keep wages low. Conservatism is not about abandoning ancient morals and beliefs about social life and policy while the progressive wage war on Christian faith and practices. REAL free trade, yes, but only if it is also reciprocal and free on BOTH SIDES, which it is not.
(Indeed, if Paul Ryan, claiming Jack Kemp’s mantle, were true to his principles, we would be pushing to end the WTO and NAFTA. He would favor truly open and free trade. He would oppose massive free-market killing regulations, special deals for dictators and communists, and for a currency based on the Gold Standard. One can hardly imagine Mr. Kemp applauding the TENS OF THOUSANDS of pages of “regulations” that attend our current psuedo-free trade system.)
Conservatism “conserves” that which is always true and valid forever so that society can advance in every way within the bounds of freedom and security with equal opportunity for all. Conservatism is future-looking, always building for tomorrow, never stuck in bitterness about the past. Conservatism is fair and equitable for all, it is the only truly color-blind vision for a better future. Conservatism is true for every generation, whether that generation accepts it or not. Conservatism transcends the party, the politics, and the people of the hour, because its principles never change, being correct in every regard.
The sudden desire to impose a purity test on the latest psuedo-conservative candidate from the GOP by some of the same people who have told us for years not to impose such tests is mind-numbing. How do liberals like Romney or “compassionate” and compromising “conservatives” like the Bushes dare pretend THEY are the voice of the movement? How does Erickon, who couldn’t even hold the line over something as petty as not letting the media choose our movement’s color, suddenly think his record of failure recommends him for leadership?
I could go on.
Conservatism is a movement with a vision: and it has never been realized. We can look around and see a sick and declining society and nation which has utterly failed to resort to the only vision for political, economic, and social resurgence that is known to man. Nobody can judge conservatism, because our nation has yet to truly embrace it in all its glory.
Conservatism has only ever done good. It was not conservatism that gave us slavery or later Jim Crowe laws, it was the Democrats and the compromisers. It was the conservatives of the abolitionist movement who waged war on slavery and racism: because our vision is color blind and forward looking, never stuck in the past.
The predictions of conservatism are beyond dispute, and those predictions reveal that America’s existence is threatened by failing to resort to these principles.
Neither Donald Trump nor the NeverTrumps represent conservatism. And it is important for us as a movement to understand that and to insist on that. Paul Ryan is not our representative, or our choice. Glenn Beck is a libertarian. Erick Erickson couldn’t even hold the line on our color! (Our color has always been TRUE BLUE, never communist red!)
In November we conservatives have to choose between two possible outcomes: Hillary wins or Trump wins. Adults know these choices are the only two choices and it is childish to pretend otherwise. If Hillary wins our movement goes underground and may be hounded out of public life as she wages war on the Bill of Rights. If Trump wins we are once again on the outside within the GOP, but we are not banished from public life, and we do have some levers we can pull to compell even Trump to give us SOME concessions.
(There are valid arguments against Trump’s fidelity to the Bill of Rights which stem from his love of imminent domain. This makes him no champion of the Bill of Rights. However, unlike Hillary, Trump is not waging active war against the First and Second Amendments upon which all the other rights depend.)
It is immature to pretend those are not the choices. The false premise that electing yet another psuedo-conservative via the GOP to the White House will “ruin” us forever is belied by the fact these same people have never raised such an alarm before. Where was Erickson’s “#neverromney” campaign?
If and when Mr. Trump becomes President we must be careful and diligent to distance our MOVEMENT and its vision from this single man. The very nature of conservatism demands such a distancing from the dangers of “personality” over substance. Sadly, the GOP is not yet the vehicle we need to put a conservative in the White House. There are alternatives, I have suggested a county-focused effort, for instance, and it may eventually become necessary to start a truly conservative Party that acts as a sort of caucus within the GOP, or that transcends it one day.
But what lies before us is 2016 and this choice: Trump or Hillary. The notion that Trump’s victory will ruin conservatism for a generation is the worse kind of hyperbole. In the end one suspects the money behind the nevertrumpers comes from pro-amnesty groups or the banker cartel (which is a thing) who would rather have a pro-amensty liberal than a psuedo-conservative or a conservative who might be less compliant.
Conservatism as a movement and a vision transcends party and personality: it has survived as a movement, albeit a remnant, within a Party that constantly betrays it and in the face of personalities who raise its banner while defying its principles. It survived and grew outside of that Party and its personalities. It will survive Trump or Clinton, though under Clinton it might actually be outlawed: witness the “gay rights” assaults on religion and the efforts to shut down “climate change deniers.”
Trump is no sure champion of conservatism or freedom, but he is not a radical opponent of these things who is hell-bent on ending them for some utopian humanist fantasy. Clinton is a positive enemy, an aggressive and determined enemy, of conservatism and freedom who wishes to end them in her bid to create the perfect progressive single-party universal state.
As always, the center-rightists who disparage social conservatism so hard and their allied conservative “leaders” who have used more resources than their results warrant, don’t understand the nature of the enemy. For them, we conservatives are the enemy and any person or process that they don’t control and benefit from is heresy.
Donald Trump is not a conservative. He joins a long line of psuedo-conservatives produced by the GOP: the only difference being he is not controlled by the old crop of leaders and power-brokers and, that, my friends, is the ONLY reason they are against him.
While I will vote for Donald J. Trump, he has not earned my confidence or active support. I intend to hold him accountable and to criticize his plans and policies by the yard-stick of social and fiscal conservative standards and principles. He is not a champion of nor does he a represent conservatism. He is not family, but neither is he the enemy. He is a sometimes friend and sometimes pain in the neck, and sometimes an embarrassment.
But the Democrats ARE THE ENEMY: make no mistake. Failing to see that has made good conservatives feckless and psuedo-conservatives hostile toward us. And that is, pretty much, who the nevertrump leaders are- an alliance of feckless but sincere conservatives and psuedo-conservatives who only hate Trump because he won’t support open borders and amnesty.