Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Reagan in '64: A call for reinforcements and fighting the false image of conservatives

Reagan mural, Tampico, Illinois
Yeah, this one hurts. Four more years of Obama. Four more years of high unemployment and stagnation. ObamaCare isn't going away.

What to do? Look at went wrong. Yes, the Republican Party needs to expand its base. America isn't getting any whiter.

What would Ronald Reagan think? Here is what he wrote for the National Review after Barry Goldwater was crushed by Lyndon Johnson in 1964:
Yes, we did; we lost a battle in the continuing war for freedom, but our position is not untenable. First of all, there are 26 million of us and we can't be explained away as diehard party faithfuls. We cross party lines in our dedication to a philosophy.

There are no plans for retreating from our present positions, but we can't advance without reinforcements. Are reinforcements available? The answer is an unhesitating — “Yes!” They are to be found in the millions of so-called Republican defectors — those people who didn't really want LBJ, but who were scared of what they thought we represented. Read that sentence very carefully because in my opinion it tells the story. All of the landslide majority did not vote against the conservative philosophy; they voted against a false image our Liberal opponents successfully mounted. Indeed it was a double false image. Not only did they portray us as advancing a kind of radical departure from the status quo, but they took for themselves a costume of comfortable conservatism. Read again their campaign fiction and you will find their normal flamboyant Liberalism hidden under the protective coloration of "the great society," or as Hubert Horatio Humphrey (who can't ask what time it is without conducting a filibuster) put it: "We don’t want a planned society — we want society planning."
While there were not that many Republican defectors to Obama yesterday--unlike in 1964 when LBJ picked up many GOPers--there definitely are reinforcements to fight 21st century liberalism.

Minorities of course want better lives for themselves and their children. So do single mothers. Business--not government--drives economic growth. The Democrats are the party of bailouts of failed businesses, more regulation, and ObamaCare.

No sane person views the fiscal insanity in public-sector union dominated states such as Illinois and California as tolerable. The public-sector unions are the closest allies of the Democrats. Unionized schools are not adequately educating our children--the victims are disproportionately minorities.

The most sacred duty of any national government is to defend its citizens. The sequestration defense cuts advanced by Obama will decimate our military. A weakened America will mean a more dangerous world. Were the Benghazi murders a preview of what is to come?

Conservatives have a false image. It's time for us to present the real one. And it's time for us to search for the conservatives who don't know yet that they are part of our movement. When we identify them--we need organize them.

It's time to build a new American majority.

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teriobrien said...

As usual, Marathon, you are right on target. We have got to back up the truck on the GOP. These establishment types who have given us these "moderate" "electable" candidates who can't articulate a clear conservative message are going to keep losing.

Rusty Weiss said...

You're so right. The problem is that despite the rhetoric, this really wasn't a battle of two opposing ideologies. It wasn't Reagan's pale pastels versus bold colors. It wasn't a true conservative battling a true liberal.

But in the end, the media will portray it as a conservative defeat anyway.

KMacGinn said...

Thank you for this uplifiting post. Just discovered your blog via GatewayPundit -- I will be back!

Soldier on, fellow Conservatives!

John Ruberry said...

Thank you all!