Saturday, August 28, 2010
Will the Conservative Movement Survive?
By: Les Carpenter III
Rational Nation USA
President Ronald Reagan. A man with vision, honor, and an undying love for America and everything that made her great. His legacy of fostering one of the largest peacetime economic growth cycles is unquestioned. His role in the collapse of the Soviet Union is without doubt among the rational thinkers of our time.
So where did the Gipper go wrong. It's not hard to see when one takes off the rose colored glasses of nostalgia. Where he let America down was his failure to reign in Keynesian economic deficit spending.
As a conservative, an independent one at that, I must admit that amongst the many great things President Ronald Wilson Reagan accomplished he failed to understand one critical point of basic economics. At some point the books must be balanced. Any successful businessman knows this simple fact. In business failing to do so ultimately results in failure of ones business. Long term deficit spending on the national level will ultimately result in the same for our nation. Eventually the laws of economics will catch up to even the most deft at avoiding reality.
The supply side economic theory upon which Reaganomics was based did work in the short term and America benefited. However, after the countries return to economic growth following the severe recession of the 1980's the nation failed to address the issue of fiscal restraint. In short rather than using the economic growth to balance our budget and begin paying down our federal obligations we continued the good times with increased deficit spending.
The progressives love to point the fingers at republicans, and in part they are right. However, the democrats, typically progressive, did little to build a rational consensus amongst the American people that lead to reigning in profligate spending. Although, giving the devil his due President Clinton did leave office with a balanced budget. Although the reason in large part for this rests with the Republican Congress.
There is much talk floating around, mostly among progressives, that the conservative movement is dying and soon for the graveyard. This is simply rhetoric with little basis in fact. Further evidence can be found that America if anything is growing more conservative and distrustful of government. Whether it be republican lead or democrat lead. In George Washington 's words; "Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master." George Washington
So the real question is... Can conservatives regain the high ground of fiscal sanity, and limited government. Can the movement embrace sound fiscal policy leading to a balanced budget and paying down the national debt? Can conservatives act to insure the safeguards for individual liberties and embrace the reality of same sex relationships leading to the union of two men or women? Can conservatives stand for the backbone of America; the working men and women that make up the productive engine of this great country? Can conservatives embrace the values that led this nation to becoming the freest and most prosperous nation on earth?
The founding fathers found a way to ensure the existence of our nation of laws and yet insure individual rights. Can the modern conservatives that hold up the values that founded our nation find the fortitude to insure that which our founders gave us survives another 234 years?
The Wall Street Journal has an interesting and right on take on this issue here.
Cross posted to Left Coast Rebel.