Sunday, April 01, 2007

MIGOP: Turn Left

Attention Mike Bishop and fellow Republicans: Goldwater and Reagan were important leaders, but they’re not models for the future.

That advice actually applies to all Republicans across the country, not just here in Michigan, and it comes from a very unlikely source - GOP cheerleader David Brooks.


From the
DMI blog:
Yesterday David Brooks (password required) floated the certain-to-be-controversial idea that the Republican Party should not look back to Reagan and Goldwater for inspiration on the political road ahead. Rather than trying to drown government in a bathtub, Brooks implies, Republicans should focus on helping people feel more secure - including increasing economic security.

Much as it pains me to say it, Brooks is onto something. Here at the non-partisan Drum Major Institute for Public Policy, we welcome a more progressive turn from any political party, organization, or individual.

In support of this idea, Brooks cites a new poll from the Pew Center for People and the Press.

The poll doesn't just reveal that Americans trust the Democrats more on a wide range of issues, it shows increasing support for progressive policy. About seven in ten Americans agree that "government should care for those who can't care for themselves" a 12-point increase since the "Republican revolution" of 1994. Two-thirds of Americans are in favor of the government providing health insurance to all citizens -- even if it means raising taxes -- and this includes a majority of those who generally prefer smaller government. Seven in ten Republicans support raising the minimum wage. Three quarters of Americans think business is too powerful. [emphasis mine]
They only have themselves to blame. The Republican Party is slowly becoming irrelevant because they don't have the foggiest notion of what it means to have values. That's why they no longer speak for the 70% of Americans who agree that "government should care for those who can't care for themselves."


5 comments:

Christine said...

Well I love it, but I think it's due to the fact that the conservative policies have increased the gap between the haves & the have nots. People who were making good middle class wages are now on unemployment, trying to recover from EDS (or whatever) heading for foreign shores.

So the cynic in me thinks that more people want government to help those in need because more people are realizing that they might be the ones in need.

If the conservative ideology (barf) had actually done well for the middle class, I suspect the majority of Americans would be thinking that government should butt out and let faith based organizations care for those in need.

My point being that I think the value shift is based a little bit on self-concern.

A second point I would make is that I think "small government" people are beginning to see the difference between "small government" and "efficient government", which is new for many of them. Until recently many of them thought that government waste is the same thing as big government. That's not true. I think this explains (in part) why people who identify as "small government" are also saying that government needs to take a bigger role in helping those in need.

As always, it's just my own personal biased opinion.

Libby Spencer said...

I love it too. Bush has singlehandedly destroyed the Republican brand and I just read somewhere else that the major hatemongering blogs are all seeing their traffic die. Malkin is down over 50% and O'Reilly, Coulter and Lucianne all saw significant drops.

Isn't it great when you live to see the karmic wheel turn?

Mensch71 said...

I'm not a big fan of the Republicans, nor do I embrace much (if any) of their political platform. That said, I think it's important to have at least a two-party system of government in order to keep a balance.

The seeming "implosion" of the Republican brand is probably a harbinger of what can (and likely will) happen to the Democratic Party.

Kathy said...

Christine, excellent points, and I agree that self-interest plays a large part in this change of attitude. (See my previous post about Microsoft. No one peeped up as the steel, auto and other industries lost jobs, but now that the pain is trickling up they're starting to make some noise.)

Libby, long time no see! You are definitely a busy blogger. Congrats on your newest affliation. I need to add it to my blog list. I didn't read about the traffic falling at those hateful blogs, but it doesn't surprise me, and I'm not the least bit unhappy about it. If you come across that link, point me to it.

Mensch71, good point, and in fact the Democratic Party did implode for quite some time, which opened the door to the GOP and their revolution. You'd think these politicians would learn from the others mistakes, eh?

Freedom's Truth said...

"think it's due to the fact that the conservative policies have increased the gap between the haves & the have nots. "

The opposite is true. Socialism has created more poverty, misery and death in the 20th century than any other cause, natural or man-made. Consider Zimbabwe's despotic socialist dictator today, who managed to create famine through expropriation of farms, all in the name of redistribution of wealth.

Today, the US is more prosperous than ever, because of our free enterprise system that enables advancing of technology and standard of living.

"If the conservative ideology (barf) had actually done well for the middle class, "
It has succeeded quite well for the middle class, via tax cuts that mostly went to the middle class and which have enabled higher standards of living than ever. Bush tax cuts helped increase take home pay for middle class families and got 10 million people off the income tax rolls. reagan's tax cuts helped increase the economy by one third, and the economy grew significantly from 2003 to 2007 in the wake of bush tax cuts. The lower tax rate boosted the economy enough to help not just incomes, but govt tax revenues as well.

Productivity has been rising at high rates.

The recipe for raising up the poor and middle class is a sound economy and the recipe for a sound economy is lower tax rates, lean government, support for free enterprise, and property rights.

Whether one party or another wins or loses, those principles, which are simply economic reality, will be constant.

"So the cynic in me thinks that more people want government to help those in need because more people are realizing that they might be the ones in need."

There is an increase in job insecurity due to globalization. But that is not the same thing as wanting to turn away from a dynamic economy. France moved right in their election, a turn away from the rigidity of socialism to the reform of the market.