A Revitalized GOP…Four Polite Suggestions

Posted in General by TBartine on July 14, 2009 No Comments yet

It’s time for a revival.

No…not THAT kind of revival.  I’m talking about the much needed revitalization of the GOP Party.

As I have stated in previous posts, while I may be a left-leaning Independent, I feel that it is ESSENTIAL to the American democratic system that there be strong, viable political parties that provide us with a CHOICE of qualified candidates to select from.  For any number of reasons…this CHOICE is not available right now.  One of our two parties (I might suggest that we need more parties…wouldn’t it be nice to have MORE choices?) is fundamentally flawed at present, and while some of that party’s most extreme supporters may choose to aggrandize and defend ANY candidate the party proposes, most Americans recognize these candidates as the flimsy, fanatical, empty suits that they really are.

So…for what it is worth…here is my list of suggestions.  I would also like to take a bit of time to expand on the last of them:

1)  Learn to value intelligence and education - Yes folks…it IS important.  Most people…even really STUPID people…they think it’s important.  Stop putting forth candidates of limited intelligence and education, hoping that the average, under-educated person will want to have a beer with them.  Why did you propose some ignorant, “folksy” female candidate…when I know for a fact the GOP has some extremely intelligent female candidates?  If the best insult you’ve got to use against the other guy is that, unlike your candidate, your opponent speaks well, is intelligent, and is highly educated…then you HAVE A BIG PROBLEM.  If you ignore this advice then you need to become familiar with a very simple voting equation: for every ONE backwards, loudmouth bumpkin you draw to your side with “folksiness” and “anti-elitism” talk…you lose TWO moderate, educated people, who would rather not be associated with backwards, loudmouth bumpkins.

2)  Become fiscal conservatives…for real - Once upon a time, GOP politicians talked about fiscal conservatism…and did a little better job of practicing it.  It’s hard to accuse the “other guy” of taxing and spending when you are spending just as much, on projects that benefit Americans very little, while driving the country into massive debt.  Oh…and I’d also climb out of the pocket of the industries that everybody knows are SCREWING Americans.  It’s one thing to support big business…it’s another thing to be controlled by BAD business.

3)  Give up the whole “family values” thing - I wish I could be more gentle but…you guys suck at it.  I know, I know…your going to say that Democrats do sick and sad things too…but really…not like you guys.  Plus, it’s even more ridiculous because YOU are the ones claiming to be the righteous, religious, family people…then one of you goes down for chasing around male pages…another leaves his wife for his lover while his wife is recovering from cancer treatments…another abandons his gubernatorial duties to run off to Argentina with his mistress…another is playing footsie with another man in an airport bathroom…the list goes on.  Remember when the GOP’s position on such things was that “what happens in a person’s home and personal life is his or her business?“  It was so much easier to avoid looking like a hypocrite when THAT was your position.

4)  Take back the civil rights high ground - the GOP’s past support for minority groups and civil rights was the one thing that showed that they were indeed, “compassionate conservatives.”  Since then, their obsession with “national security” as well as the built-in bigotry of the religious right has forced them to abandon this area…and the respect that came with it.  Guys…this is why you are no longer “The Party of Lincoln.” And this is the suggestion that I’d like to elaborate on for a moment.

Remember during the Presidential Campaign?  We found out something that, well, frightened us a bit…or should have frightened us.  We saw clips like this:

And this wasn’t even the worst of it…clips came out weekly from McCain/Palin rallies, sometimes filled with the worst kind of overt racial hatred.   And the GOP…did nothing to turn away, correct, or educate such supporters because, well…votes are votes.  These would not be the only GOP scandals regarding race…in the last few months alone:

  • South Carolina GOP leaders said that they DON’T think the racist online jokes of their activists and supports will hurt their chances of attracting black and other minority voters.  Seriously?
  • From the state whose GOP geniuses brought you the “Barack the Magic Negro” clip…Tennessee now brings you the GOP staffer who sent around the picture of all the nation’s presidents, where Obama’s picture…is just two eyes against a black background.  That staffer…not fired.  Her apology?  She said she was sorry that she sent it to the wrong people…but not that she sent it.
  • Rush Limbaugh, self-appointed spokesperson for the party, has in the past told a caller “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back,” and also once said, “Have you ever noticed how all composite pictures of wanted criminals resemble Jesse Jackson?” Another time he said, “The NAACP should have riot rehearsal. They should get a liquor store and practice robberies.“  He also accused Colin Powell of supporting Obama only because Obama is black…and recently he accused Sonia Sotomayor of being a racist, saying that her mention of herself as a “wise Latina” is no different than when GOP George Allen referred to a man as “macaca.”

  • In today’s confirmation hearings for Sotomayor, GOP Senator Jeff Sessions, a man with a history of racist positions and statements, a man who that very committee once denied confirmation BECAUSE of HIS racist past…questioned Sotomayor on when whether or not she will be able to set race aside.  The hypocrisy of this did not go unnoticed…
  • On FOX News recently, the voice of the conservative movement, Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade went on a rant on how we in America allow people to marry other races and “species.”

  • Even the GOP’ers who ARE minority members want in on the act…RNC Chairman Michael Steele, when recently asked how he is going to get blacks to vote Republican he answered that he would lure them with “fried chicken and potato salad.“  Very classy…
  • Newt Gingrich actually thinks that he can get some of the Latino vote by starting to post on Twitter in Spanish…this would probably go over better if he hadn’t called Spanish, “the language of living in a ghetto.”
  • And lastly…and perhaps most sickening…we have Audra Shay. Shay is a top Young Republican official…and she was having a discussion on her Facebook page.  A friend named Eric posted “It’s the government making us commies… can’t even smoke in my damn car… whats next they going to issue toilet paper once a month… tell us how to wipe our asses.“  He later added, “Obama Bin Lauden [sic]  is the new terrorist… Muslim is on there side [sic]… need to take this country back from all of these mad coons… and illegals.“  Shay’s response: “You tell em Eric!  lol.“  Shay would later claim that she was replying to an earlier post of Eric’s…but there was an eight minute gap between his last post and her comment.  AND he wasn’t the only person saying such things on her Facebook page.  Several other Young Republican leaders questioned her judgment in her Facebook comments, hoping she would reject the racist comments…so she “unfriended” them…and kept Eric as a friend.  Later she would attempt to “sanitize” her page and she posted some flaky, canned “I do not support racism” response that not even a child would believe.  And you know what…despite all this happening just last week, Saturday she was elected head of the Young Republicans.

I know, my GOP friends…it’s not totally your fault.  By nature, conservatism is about “resisting change” and that will invariably draw some people with some very outdated, ignorant, and unacceptable ideas.  I guess that is your challenge…to find some way to tell them that they are W-R-O-N-G, and still keep their vote. That is a tough one.  But until you learn how to do it, you will be unable to expand beyond being the party of “rich white men“…your claims of Christian devoutness will sound hollow…and you will have no occasion to even pretend you occupy the high moral ground.