Friday, October 10, 2008

My prescription for the conservative crisis

This David Brooks column is good, and I was struck particularly by Democratic dominance over professionals. Ultimately, a political party that spurns these sorts of folks, along with learning and reason in pursuit of some sort of gut-level intuitiveness is a party that doesn't have a future. I have recently been wondering whether we'd see a truly conservative third party spring up soon, taking with it the likes of Colin Powell and Chuck Hagel and those sorts of guys. Let the GOP become the right-wing party like Europe's right-wing parties that gets 20% of the vote. I think a new conservative party (and why not call it the Conservative Party?) could emulate the Cameronite approach in the U.K.: social moderation, a deep (though not dogmatic) belief in limited government and lower taxes, a commitment to fairness and equality, a focus on helping the middle and working classes above all, a willingness to experiment on different policy solutions and a focus on efficiency. Plus, a commitment to realism on foreign policy would be another good thing.

Honestly, I'd love to see a party like that on the scene here in America, and I'm beginning to think we will. Put simply, I think that the rot at the center of the Republican Party is unfixable. Just watch those recent McCain rallies on YouTube for evidence of this. Let the GOP keep a smattering of seats in the Bible Belt and the Rocky Mountains. A revitalized Democratic Party running against a legitimately conservative party would be helpful to everyone. What would need to happen would be for a number of prominent Republicans to formally defect and build a new party, the way Ariel Sharon did in Israel. I wonder if, after this election, conservatives like David Brooks might not be open to such a possibility.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.