Turn back the clock to November of 2000, and the presidential election. The outcry then from the left was that George W. Bush stole the election from Al Gore, because of Florida. Accusations were in the air, that the Governor of Florida, Jeb Bush, handed the election to his brother by not counting piles of votes – the infamous “hanging chads” controversy. Of course, in the months that followed, the Democrats continued to hammer that drum, claiming all manner of fraudulent practices in the vote counts, even suggesting an evil conspiracy between the Bush Camp, and Diebold, the company that manufactured many voting machines across the country. Back then, Republicans simply said it was a case of sour grapes, and that the Democrats needed to stop complaining.
If the claims against the Republicans then were true, it stands to reason that we wouldn’t have Barack Obama as president now. It simply wouldn’t have been allowed, one way or another. That’s not saying that there is no such thing as fraud in our voting system – there certainly is. However, there isn’t meaningful evidence to show that there was ever a concerted nationwide action to put Bush in office, contrary to what Democrats might want to make people believe. That sort of situation is historically in their court, although it’s usually been a matter of bribery of populace.
Look back farther, to Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Great Society”, and the resulting Democrat rule that carried on for many years afterward. Yes, there were Republicans in the White House, however they were met with resistance from Democrats in Congress, and State governments. Democrats have been paying for votes for years, through huge social programs. We complain about that now, rightfully making the claim that the people are voting in favor of getting free things, instead of meaningful changes that will make our floundering economy more stable and productive. The people are not feeling the pain that governmental largesse creates, because they are direct beneficiaries of that spending. It’s political genius–until the bottom falls out.
And that is what is starting to happen in this country. Jimmy Carter’s disastrous administration caused 12 years of Republican rule, between skyrocketing fuel costs and shortages, and the demoralizing fact that a tiny theocratic nation in what was Persia managed to keep Americans as hostages, as the president’s attempts to rescue them failed miserably. What should be the equivalent for Obama is the crumbling political landscape in the Middle East and North Africa, which is punctuated with the first death of a U.S. Ambassador since the Carter years. Democrats can cry foul over comparing those two administrations, but the facts cannot be denied. The only reasons why this administration isn’t being forced to face those realities is because of the media, and the artful skill of a perpetual campaigner controlling the narrative that the vast majority of the public sees.
But, there are a few events that happened this week that could change that situation, if Republicans bother to take advantage of them properly. The first is the government shutdown and financial default that was just avoided. Republicans gave in on those two items, and rightfully so – the damage that was being done in the public eye would be very difficult to overcome before the 2014 election cycle. The bone of contention is Obamacare, and the goal is to have it repealed, not just defunded. There are many experts out there who say as the law is implemented further down the road, it will be harder to stop. However, this is an historic piece of legislation, so it is difficult for anyone to point out something to compare it with to prove that contention. They are also not taking into account the financial pain that this will cause to the largest voting bloc in the nation – senior citizens. That alone should have been enough for conservative strategists to take a far less combatant tactical stance on the law.
Senator Ted Cruz was right to make his 21-hour speech on the floor. The only mistake was that he didn’t drive home the idea that it was not just about Obamacare, but about a more responsive representative government. The biggest problem we are facing now is the fact that we have far too many career politicians in Washington who no longer listen to the people they are supposed to represent. There are taxpayers that are furious not only with Obamacare, but also with the myriad of social programs that this administration has started or expanded. There should have been talk about the radical increase in the number of people receiving assistance – SNAP, and the infamous Obama-phones are two examples. Republicans were granted a perfect storm on that, when the EBT systems crashed, and the limitless cards caused the shelves to be emptied in a few Wal-Mart stores. The fact that Wal-Mart will be left with that bill was just a blip on the radar, which is another conservative mistake. There should be thousands of stories about how that company is going to absorb those losses, because it is insane to assume that Wal-Mart will simply write them off. Of course it’s likely that the company will increase prices either across the country, or in the regions where the stores were ransacked. The public needs to know that, and once that hits their pocketbooks, they need to be told repeatedly that it really is the fault of the government, and its huge entitlement programs.
As for Obamacare, it’s coming out that not only does the program to sign up doesn’t work, but that the Obama administration is using the site to get more people to register to vote. It’s political genius, because it is a legitimate assumption that people that benefit from the program are more likely to vote for the Democrats that gave it to them. Technically, it is not illegal, but it definitely is unethical. The more cynical people out there would rightfully claim that it’s probably also another end run around the various voter ID laws that are being adopted across the country. Combating that is slightly more difficult, but there are examples of Democrats misusing voter information out there to expose in this context. The Obama presidential campaign made use of technology to lead street-teams to the doorsteps of voters with a mobile phone app. It broadcast voter registration information to anyone that had the app on their phone – something that the Romney campaign made the mistake of not highlighting when it happened. While there were no documented cases of crimes related to the use of the app, that doesn’t necessarily mean it didn’t happen. Keep in mind, the press has been avoiding stories that put Obama in a bad light from the beginning. The media didn’t talk about this because one bipartisan issue for voters is preventing identity theft. A virtual map of voters on a mobile phone was simply begging for misuse.
Other than the sneaky move of getting more people to vote is the larger problem about the Healthcare.gov website not working. It’s come out that the administration intentionally had this set up to fail, by requiring that people register before being able to shop for insurance. That has paralyzed the system, so there are very few people that have actually been able to use the site to buy coverage. The administration knows that the prices are very high, and that if people could see them without knowing how much money they can get from the government to defray those costs, no one would be interested in buying. The system cannot work without mass enrollments, and since the administration isn’t releasing numbers on how many have actually signed up, it’s a fair assumption that they aren’t anywhere close to what they need to keep the program running. Add to that all the other negative situations attached to these regulations, from hours being cut by employers, to low cost policies in the private market being stopped because they don’t meet the Obamacare standards, and there isn’t a single portion of this law that is working. Democrats are hanging their hats on the prohibition against refusing people with pre-existing conditions, and the ability of parents to keep their children on their policies until age 26 – two items that could have easily been passed as a law on their own, without difficulty.
That leaves conservatives with a difficult decision to make. Do they continue to fight against Obamacare, risking public annoyance with them, or do they simply step back and let the inevitable happen? Given the problems we’re seeing now, the popularity of Obamacare will continue to wane as more portions of the law go into effect. The people will feel the pain in their pocketbooks. There will be waiting times to see healthcare professionals if the mass enrollments do happen. If they don’t, the system will collapse in on itself sooner, from lack of funding. The only options the Democrats really have to fund the program must include stealing from Medicare even more than they are already, so that puts them in the unenviable position of having to tempt the ire of senior citizens – the voting bloc that can break any candidate or party. This is a textbook example of giving someone enough rope to hang himself.
Finally, there is the new senator from New Jersey to consider. Cory Booker defeated Steve Lonegan, but the devil is in the details. Even the liberal media is admitting that he didn’t win as handily as expected. Republicans, and organizations like True the Vote need to go over the numbers from that special election with a fine-toothed comb. The reports of polling place irregularities came out early, and with a quick glance at the demographics, it’s obvious that there are some questionable numbers in the results. Any counties that have previously favored Republicans that didn’t have results that reflect previous ones need to be investigated – on the ground, the old-fashioned way. People that were reporting irregularities on Twitter and Facebook need to be tracked down, and interviewed. Republicans need to get as much information as they can, not only about what happened in this election, but also how. This is like a test-run for 2014 for both sides, and if conservatives don’t know how the Democrats pulled off any misdeeds in this election, they have no hope of preventing it in the future.
The lessons to be learned from this past week are fairly simple. Whether or not Republicans take advantage of them remain to be seen. In order to shift the political landscape, conservatives have to make some hard decisions, and get ready for some very hard work.
First and foremost, we must stop engaging in fights simply because they’re worth fighting; instead we have to fight the fights that we can win. We’re not going to win the Obamacare fight, and bluntly, we don’t need to do it. The law is a multi-level disaster that will collapse in on itself one way or another. The Democrats famously voted for something that they didn’t know about, and will find out the hard way that it doesn’t work. Let them. Stand back, and simply reserve the right to say “I told you so” when it happens.
Second, Republicans that want to survive in office need to get back to their populist roots. The people need to remind these people that they are representatives, not politicians. The infighting needs to stop, now. That is not to say that there cannot be disagreements within the ranks. People that consider themselves “Republican” are varied across this country, so of course the people that represent them would also be different from each other. Take advantage of the differences to speak to a larger group of citizens. Bury the differences when facing Democrats. We are being defeated because we are not united when it counts. That must stop.
Third, we must force the media to pay attention to what matters to us. The talk of boycotts, and battling the mainstream media is fine for conservative journalists and bloggers when they’re talking among themselves. Publicly, the only message should be one of ridicule. Stupid liberal journalists can’t recognize a real story even if it bites them in the rear. Real journalism isn’t about pandering to the president. And if we really mean business, we should be talking about putting our money where our mouths are. Where is the conservative mutual fund that’s buying into the mainstream media? They accuse us of being evil capitalists. So, why aren’t we encouraging the top 1% in our ranks to start buying out the media? It’s something to consider, and would be rather amusing to observe.
Finally, we need to find out all that we can about the tactics of the opposition where it really counts, at the ballot box. Since we already know that the government won’t be bothered with enforcing the law on this, we need to do it ourselves. There shouldn’t be a single polling place in the country where one can’t find Republicans watching the polls, and making sure that Democrats are not committing fraud to win. That will require massive grassroots organizing, so we’d better get started. We’ve been failing at that sort of thing, other than in getting large groups of people to show up for protests. It’s better to mobilize them on the streets across the country, than it is to get them hanging around in one spot. That’s what the Democrats have been doing, and we’re seeing those results.
The bottom line is that we have somehow forgotten that this really is our country. We’ve spent far too much time battling over the fine-points amongst our own, and haven’t done enough to win the hearts and minds of the nation. A greater man than I said this, and it should be our mantra, “If you can’t sell liberty and freedom, you suck.” ~Andrew Breitbart