I was preparing to write a brief history of the Republican Party earlier this afternoon, but of course, I started by procrastinating. I was reading some other blogs when I came across this excellent post by Robert Stacy McCain:
Hot Air headlined Rick Moran's lengthy examination of the "kook" charges against Glenn Beck, which involves a discussion of the general problem that conservatives face in terms of messaging.
The real importance of this post however, is when he gets into the inner-workings of DC and Republican politics:
Power vs. Prestige
In the federal government, as the Framers intended, Congress represents power. But with growth of the imperial presidency, the White House represents prestige, and there is nothing that the elite covet so much as prestige.
The difference between the GOP elite in Washington and the ordinary grassroots Republican in Tulsa or Tucson or Tacoma can be summed up in a single word: Ambition. And this one word explains the struggle between elite prestige and grassroots power in the GOP.
Make sure you go read the entire post! It's very well done, very informative, and a definite MUST READ for anyone with an interest in politics. But that's not what this post is about. This post is about the start of McCain's post - Rick Moran's rant about those extreme right-wingers.
Today, it is the critique by the left that somehow, the radical right has captured the conservative movement and, by extension, the Republican party. Liberals have temporarily abandoned the idea of trying to make Rush Limbaugh the leader of the conservatives and the GOP because Mr. Limbaugh has failed to cooperate by not being very radical lately or at least, loony tunes radical which is the standard by which the left wants to establish in people's minds when they look at the right.
Instead, they have focused on another pop conservative in Glenn Beck, a big time talk radio host and a budding star on Fox News. Mr. Beck is the kind of "conservative leader" I warned about ...
But Glenn Beck is also something of a kook ...
I don't care where you are on the ideological spectrum, anyone who believes we may be headed for dictatorship is a loon ... any rational American has to ask if this fellow isn't a couple of shakes short of a martini.
Here we are with something I've talked about a number of times before. ANYONE who actually believes in liberty, with an inherent sense of skepticism towards government, is labeled by the Establishment Crowd as a "kook." What does that tell you about the future of the Republican Party? That there ain't much of one.
Let's see here ...
Thomas Jefferson certainly thought it was possible for us to lose our republic to the hands of tyranny. Of course, he was a radical "kook" who helped lead a revolution!
The issue today is the same as it has been throughout all history, whether man shall be allowed to govern himself or be ruled by a small elite.
When all government, domestic and foreign, in little as in great things, shall be drawn to Washington as the center of all power, it will render powerless the checks provided of one government on another and will become as venal and oppressive as the government from which we separated.
Nor was he alone among our Founders:
We must confine ourselves to the powers described in the Constitution, and the moment we pass it, we take an arbitrary stride towards a despotic Government. - James Jackson
There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. - James Madison
The Federal Reserve is printing money faster than paper mills can make the paper. History teaches us that all central banks fail. Congress is spending money at record levels, yet they have not a penny. David M Walker, former Comptroller General of the United States and head of the GAO, says the government is unequivocally heading towards bankruptcy!
Our country's financial health is deteriorating and the symptoms are everywhere. If we do not address this soon, we face serious long-term economic hardships that will not only affect today's Americans, but future generations for years to come. Our federal government's current liabilities and unfunded promises - a total of $53 trillion as of September 30, 2007 - threaten to bankrupt us and rob our children and grandchildren of the future they deserve.
The Obama Administration is lining the pockets of the banking institutions with trillions of dollars that will come out of everyday Americans (and their children and grandchildren) pockets. And Bush is every bit as guilty! The new $3.6 trillion (record high) budget, by Obama's own admission, redefines the role of government in the economy and society.
He's fired a private company employee, wants executive wage-caps, believes the government has the authority to take over any private business they feel creates "systemic" risk. He wants to limit charitable deductions, increase income taxes, and micromanage the economy too!
The House just passed the Mandatory National Socialist Civilian Army bill, otherwise known as the "GIVE Act." This is as un-American as you can get! "Service-learning" is a mandatory part of the curriculum in all of the secondary schools served by the local educational agency. If you don't know what "service-learning" is, to put it simply, it's socialist class warfare. Read the writings of American philosopher William James, who first introduced "service-learning" to the Leftist Elite.
I could go on here, but it's as plain as day that nothing going on in Washington has anything to do with the liberty and freedom FROM government our Founders gave us. Let's be real ... FDR was a piker in comparison to what Obama has already achieved!
You either love freedom, or you don't. I guess I'm real old school ... because I still believe in the American Creed on which we were founded. So chalk me up as another "kook."
Won't take away elections? Have you ever heard of ACORN? Their business is mass voter fraud! Thanks to their efforts, in California you don't even have to document who you are! Heck, if you're an "undocumented worker," they'll just mail you an absentee ballot, no questions asked. Now, ACORN is taking over the census!
With the man who perfected Alinsky's tactics in the White House, ACORN handling the census and voter registrations, all they need is a way to bankroll this scam at a higher-level and we've got Hugo Chavez-style "elections" in the States! Oh, and between the "stimulus," and guys like Soros, it looks like they just might have the financing they need.
Maybe it's time the Beltway Republicans take their heads out of the sand, because only a "kook" would brush these things aside to make room for more "policy."
Moran ends his post stating:
Our heroes 20 years ago were Reagan, Buckley, Fitzpatrick, Kirk, Goldwater, Anderson, and others who didn't see conservatism as a meal ticket but as something to think about, to write about and contemplate man's place in the world and his relationship to government and God.
Is it really a question of elites versus the rest? I hardly think my little blog catapults me into that exclusive club. Maybe I'm too old. Maybe I'm too stuck in my ways. Perhaps I have stagnated while the rest of the conservative movement has gone on without me. As I said at the beginning, I don't know. I just don't know.
Fitzpatrick was a typo, and I still don't know who Anderson is, but I agree with McCain that he left out some very important people - Mises, Hayek, Friedman, Higgs, Rothbard ... but since he brought up my hero Barry Goldwater, in defense of calling Glenn Beck a "kook," I'll finish the post by quoting from Goldwater's book "With No Apologies," because I guess really ... he was one of us "kooks" too.
Since 1944 every American Secretary of State, with the exception of James F. Byrnes, has been a member of the CFR. Almost without exception the members of the CFR are united by a congeniality of birth, economic status, and educational background.
A number of writers disturbed by the influential role this organization has played in determining foreign policy have concluded the Council on Foreign Relations and its members are an active part of the communist conspiracy for world domination ...
Many of the policies advocated by the CFR have been damaging to the cause of freedom and particularly to the United States, but this is not because the members are communist or communist sympathizers. This explanation of our foreign policy reversals is too pat, too simplistic.
I believe the Council on Foreign Relations and its ancillary elitist groups are indifferent to communism. They have no ideological anchors. In their pursuit of a new world order they are prepared to deal without prejudice with a communist state, a socialist state, a democratic state, monarchy, oligarchy - it's all the same to them.
Think about what Goldwater just said, in light of Obama's trip across the globe creating global regulatory agreements, as well as his appointment of self-described "transnationalist" Harold Koh as State Department legal adviser.
I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue. - Barry Goldwater, accepting the Republican Presidential Nomination, July 16, 1964