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Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Republican Reformation

Over at the National Review, Jonah Goldberg is issuing a wake up call to the Republican Party. Goldberg argues for a return to the traditional conservative principles of a smaller government whose powers to tax and spend are heavily restrained. Goldberg closes the article with the following indictment of Republican policies:
We have confused “low taxes” — which we all like — with limited government, which we don’t have. We expect Democrats to want the government to do everything, but at least they have the consistency to raise taxes in order to pay for it. Republicans lack similar convictions. Which is why they need to be born again.
I couldn't agree more. The party I know and love seems to have lost its way in many respects. But don't expect those guys in Washington to do anything about it. It will truly take a revolution at the roots if we expect things to change. Who's with me?


Blogger Shaun Kenney said...

Sign me up!

Sounds like the start of another Virginia-wide conference to me!

1:48 PM

Blogger James Atticus Bowden said...

Zach, you're late for the Revolution. Go to the late ranks for accountability and then move up to the front. The Revolution began in 05 with 6 GOP challenges in the HD. More to follow in 07. Hopefully, better, too.

3:10 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


Aren't those AFP guys doing that on January 7th?

5:10 PM

Blogger Madisonian said...

Y'all know I'm in, though we may have to agree what we are shooting for in our revolution. How about business de-regulation? That's a hands-off government approach most of us can probably agree on, as is lower taxes and lower spending. Reduced welfare state? Sure.
But what about social issues where most conservatives do want the government involved? For instance, on abortion. Can we be pro-life, yet still insist that government doesn't belong in the bedroom, the marriage, or the hospital? Does a pro-lifer who doesn't want the government involved betray the movement? What about a hands-off approach to religion? No government involvement (monetary, space-use, etc.) but no regulation either?
I think these two examples are illustrative of a greater problem within the caucus. We are (almost) all fiscal conservatives, but we seem pretty split between social moderates (no government involvement in our private lives) and social conservatives (government must help enforce social values). Until we sort that out, it would be less of a revolution and more of a civil war.

9:11 AM

Blogger James Atticus Bowden said...

Maddie: The intramural war (there is already an ACW II: The Great U.S. Culture War) for one Party begins with fundamental misunderstandings like government interfering in private lives and this 'hand off' on religion.

When your namesake wrote the Constitution he understood that fallen men needed to have separate powers, limited powers and checks and balances to keep government power under control.

Likewise, he understood that the necessary, and limited regulation of human behavior in a representative democracy must come from the legislature. It can't come from tribal taboo, custom, religious guidance, the king, etc as in other civilizations based on homogeneous cultures because our sub-cultures of family, race, religion, tribe/clan, language etc are heterogeneous.

The problem for Liberals who want to be called moderates is that the social consensus values of the Judeo-Christian culture broke down and divided openly in the 1960s - thus ACW II.

If government doesn't involve itself in laws in our private lives then incest, homosexuality, bestiality, polygamy, polyandry, - public nudity, profanity, open sex etc. are all okay. If you make a single rule it is government involvement.

The issue for reasonable Virginians is where to draw the line on what behaviors are legal, which are tolerated and which are illegal, not to say silly libertarian/liberal lines like keeping government out of the bedroom, etc.

12:03 PM

Blogger Old Zach said...

James, you act as if I've just shown up. I always have and always will support GOP candidates that espouse our shared conservative principles. Our next battle may come sooner than 07 if Delegate Bryant indeed vacates his seat.

12:33 PM

Blogger James Atticus Bowden said...

Zach: no offense meant. I've read your posts before as solid. I just, mistakenly, took the call to action as something new rather than a recall.

7:48 PM


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