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Tag "GOP"

Much fuss has been made about Rick Perry’s careless remark about Ben Bernanke.  While most of the media has honed in on the obvious ridiculousness of basically calling for the lynching of a public official for doing his job, I think it’s more telling from a policy perspective to try to understand why Rick Perry would be so against monetary easing.

Ezra Klein and Matt Yglesias weigh in on this very topic.  Klein bemoans an “a much broader, and unfortunate, shift among Republicans on monetary policy.”  While Yglesias somewhat disagrees by pointing out that “Perry’s concern is that monetary easing would work well, and he was putting Bernanke on notice to avoid it because he wants to win the election.”

The thing is that they are both right.

I think one of the most startling discoveries I’ve made in the last few years is that the GOP is dominated by Austrian School disciples.  I wasn’t even aware of this non-mainstream school of economics until I had a chance encounter with a believer at work, who had manage to convert one of my friends.  One of the major theories of the Austrian School is the Austrian Business Cycle Theory, in which they basically blame the Fed for every recession ever:

Proponents believe that a sustained period of low interest rates and excessive credit creation results in a volatile and unstable imbalance between saving and investment.[2] According to the theory, the business cycle unfolds in the following way: Low interest rates tend to stimulate borrowing from the banking system. This expansion of credit causes an expansion of the supply of money, through the money creation process in a fractional reserve banking system. It is asserted that this leads to an unsustainable credit-sourced boom during which the artificially stimulated borrowing seeks out diminishing investment opportunities. Though disputed, proponents hold that a credit-sourced boom results in widespread malinvestments. In the theory, a correction or “credit crunch“ – commonly called a “recession” or “bust” – occurs when exponential credit creation cannot be sustained. Then the money supply suddenly and sharply contracts when markets finally “clear”, causing resources to be reallocated back towards more efficient uses.

So it’s not as if the GOP doesn’t think that monetary easing wouldn’t work in the short term.  I think they mostly agree that it would.  It’s that they believe that in the long-term we will suffer for it.

So the real problem here isn’t a lack of understanding or a disingenuous ruse to win an election.  It’s much worse than that.  The entire GOP has been captivated by a non-mainstream school of economics, which proposes long refuted theories, and they are fighting for something they think is right.

The problem is that they are really, really wrong.

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Greg Mankiw thinks he’s really clever:

I have a plan to reduce the budget deficit.  The essence of the plan is the federal government writing me a check for $1 billion.  The plan will be financed by $3 billion of tax increases.  According to my back-of-the envelope calculations, giving me that $1 billion will reduce the budget deficit by $2 billion.

Now, you may be tempted to say that giving me that $1 billion will not really reduce the budget deficit.  Rather, you might say, it is the tax increases, which have nothing to do with my handout, that are reducing the budget deficit.  But if you are tempted by that kind of sloppy thinking, you have not been following the debate over healthcare reform.

I’m not going to attack this particular point about PPACA, because others have done it already.

I do think, however, it needs to be pointed out that this is indicative of the alternate universe in which most of the mainstream GOP resides.  In this alternate universe, tax increases are not a means to reduce the deficit.  They point this out as if it’s some sort of joke that you don’t get.  From Michele Bachmann’s “tax cuts shouldn’t be considered a deficit,” to CUTGO, to the new slash-and-burn budget plan straight out of Paul Ryan’s wet dream, it is clear that, in the mind of the modern GOP, the only path to a balanced budget is with spending cuts.

This is horribly unrealistic.

Any serious plan to take control of our budget situation must include an increase in our average tax rates.  And that’s no joke.

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Today, President Obama will sign a bill repealing DADT, and watch the Senate ratify the new START treaty.  These are two things that were emphatically pronounced dead weeks ago.  So what’s going on here?

I think a lot of this is the power of the lame duck.  You’ve got retiring Senators, Senators that got beat, and a bunch of other Senators not up for reelection until 2014 or 2016.  It makes it easy to vote for things you otherwise wouldn’t vote for when they can fly under the radar.

But there’s one person that sticks out when I look at these roll calls: Lisa Murkowski.

Not that Lisa Murkowski has ever been particularly conservative (her DW-Nominate scores are typically around 0.25, which is somewhere in between the GOP average and Susan Collins), and she had plenty of company from the GOP voting for these two bills.

But there’s one vote that sticks out: the DREAM Act.  Lisa Murkowski was one of only 3 Republicans to vote yes.  The others being Bob Bennett of Utah (who just got primaried on the right and is leaving the Senate) and Richard Lugar (a frequent GOP maverick).  So what’s Lisa Murkowski doing voting for something that couldn’t even get Ben Nelson or Max Baucus on board?

She’s got freedom.

In an election season that was characterized by far right challenges to GOP incumbents, Lisa Murkowski survived.  Murkowski was the antidote to Christine O’Donnell mania.  So she’s got a brand new strategy.  Stop defending your right flank and shoot for the general, and if it means you no longer have a GOP label, then all the better.

I have a feeling there’s some other GOP Congressmen that might want to follow this model, and they’re paying attention.  So how much longer will it be until a new party forms, full of GOP moderates?

Just saying…

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I think it’s pretty safe to say that any major legislation that hasn’t passed already is absolutely dead in the water. Cap and trade? Forget about it. Card check? No way. A second stimulus. Nope. And looking back, I’m really happy that health care reform passed when it did, because the Dems would have gotten clobbered either way. At least we still have that.

So what do we have to look forward to then?

The way I see it, the brand new House Republican majority has two basic options: punt or blitz.

In the punt scenario, the GOP can just sit back and quietly block any major pieces of Obama’s agenda, but not mount a serious fight against current legacy problems. No government shutdowns. No new major policy initiatives. No serious budget stare-downs. Just throw enough red meat at the base to keep them happy, but not enough to draw a bunch of attention to yourself (maybe some hearings on how Al Gore made up global warming).

In this scenario, the GOP would basically hope to survive 2012 by not taking ownership of what looks like a still pretty weak economy in 2012. Based on the latest Fed projections, we’ll still be looking at ~7.5% unemployment in two years, which might be enough to drag down Obama.

The problem with this strategy would be keeping the caucus in line. The class of 2010 has some pretty motivated freshman with Tea Party sentiments that may not want to sit on the sidelines while things drag on. If this is the path the GOP chooses, watch for a disgruntled GOP caucus stepping out of line here and there.

In the blitz scenario, the GOP would launch a major oppositional agenda and put it center stage, with big time fights between Speaker Boehner and President Obama dominating the media. This would be 1995 all over again. Budget showdowns and the whole kit and kaboodle (maybe even an impeachment!).

The problem with this strategy is it gives a clear foil for Obama, which he didn’t have during 2010. It was very hard for Democrats to differentiate themselves from Republicans when they were in the majority. The thing to keep in mind is that the Republicans still are not very popular. This was more a “not-Democrat” wave than it was a Republican one. If the GOP serves its agenda up as a target it will get wrecked by Obama. In an Obama v. Boehner fight, I pick Obama every time.

So what’ll they choose? My money’s on punt, but I’m hoping for the blitz.

The real wildcard here is what Obama does in response. He can try to force the GOP into either of these roles.

The one thing that seems extremely unlikely is that there’s actually some meaningful compromises that happen on major policies during the 112th Congress. Not that I wouldn’t welcome it, but color me skeptical.

(Which is sad, by the way.)

The first real test of this will be the lame duck tax cut fight. If the GOP brings the noise and mounts a full blown fight creating an impasse, signs point to blitz. If they agree on a temporary extension, signs point to punt.

I can’t wait.

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I think Jonathon Chait makes a really good point here:

Now, most elite Republicans understand that the red meat fed to the base isn’t exactly right. It’s useful to scare the daylights out of the activists, but writers for the Standard and the Journal editorial page understand that “freedom,” as most people understand the term, is not really at risk. They understand as well that politics is a little more complicated than “if Republicans stay true to conservatism, they cannot lose.”

But the conservative base is not in on the joke. And so Republican elites found themselves with just a few frantic days to undo the toxic and intoxicating effects of 20 months of relentless propaganda. Vote for the man who compromised with evil! The true conservative can’t always win! They couldn’t do it.

I won’t say that the Republican base strategy has been a total failure. But it is nice to see it blow up in the face of the establishment from time to time.

He’s a little more happy about this whole Christine O’Donnell scenario than I am, but I think this is important, and it reminds me of something President Obama said a while back when he visited the House Republicans at their retreat.

So all I’m saying is, we’ve got to close the gap a little bit between the rhetoric and the reality. I’m not suggesting that we’re going to agree on everything, whether it’s on health care or energy or what have you, but if the way these issues are being presented by the Republicans is that this is some wild-eyed plot to impose huge government in every aspect of our lives, what happens is you guys then don’t have a lot of room to negotiate with me.

I mean, the fact of the matter is, is that many of you, if you voted with the administration on something, are politically vulnerable in your own base, in your own party. You’ve given yourselves very little room to work in a bipartisan fashion because what you’ve been telling your constituents is, this guy is doing all kinds of crazy stuff that’s going to destroy America.

And I would just say that we have to think about tone. It’s not just on your side, by the way — it’s on our side, as well. This is part of what’s happened in our politics, where we demonize the other side so much that when it comes to actually getting things done, it becomes tough to do.

I think people generally underestimate the effect of conservative hyperbolic rhetoric.  It’s nice to sit over here on the left and think that every Republican in the Senate genuinely believes the crap coming out of Fox News, but the fact is that not all of them do.  I’m sure there are several Republicans who would love to compromise on legislation but are boxed in by this rhetoric.  And it’s not just Republicans either.  I’m sure that this also effects conservative Democrats like Ben Nelson too.

People have to realize that the vast majority of people don’t pay attention.  For those that do, a majority of them are watching Fox News, and are exposed to this hyperbole all day long, and it’s poisonous.  It stifles rational debate and fosters gridlock.

There’s a part of me that wants the Republicans to win the House so that they have to lay in the bed they made.  How can you pass a bill without compromising with the enemy?  But the other part of me knows how irresponsible the GOP can be and I can’t eliminate the possibility of utter gridlock on Capitol Hill.

One thing is for certain.  If the GOP wants to create any public policy in the near future, it will either have to tone down the rhetoric, or control the entire government.

For America’s sake, I hope it’s the former.

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This was classic Obama, and it’s really amazing and fresh.

Please take the time to watch it, or read it.

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Jonathan Chait has a really great take down of Ayn Rand over at The New Republic.  You all should go read it.

Sample:

For conservatives, the causal connection between virtue and success is not merely ideological, it is also deeply personal. It forms the basis of their admiration of themselves. If you ask a rich person whether he ascribes his success to good fortune or his own merit, the answer will probably tell you whether that person inhabits the economic left or the economic right. Rand held up her own meteoric rise from penniless immigrant to wealthy author as a case study of the individualist ethos. “No one helped me,” she wrote, “nor did I think at any time that it was anyone’s duty to help me.”

But this was false. Rand spent her first months in this country subsisting on loans from relatives in Chicago, which she promised to repay lavishly when she struck it rich. (She reneged, never speaking to her Chicago family again.) She also enjoyed the great fortune of breaking into Hollywood at the moment it was exploding in size, and of bumping into DeMille. Many writers equal to her in their talents never got the chance to develop their abilities. That was not because they were bad or delinquent people. They were merely the victims of the commonplace phenomenon that Bernard Williams described as “moral luck.”

Not surprisingly, the argument that getting rich often entails a great deal of luck tends to drive conservatives to apoplexy. This spring the Cornell economist Robert Frank, writing in The New York Times, made the seemingly banal point that luck, in addition to talent and hard work, usually plays a role in an individual’s success. Frank’s blasphemy earned him an invitation on Fox News, where he would play the role of the loony liberal spitting in the face of middle-class values. The interview offers a remarkable testament to the belligerence with which conservatives cling to the mythology of heroic capitalist individualism. As the Fox host, Stuart Varney, restated Frank’s outrageous claims, a voice in the studio can actually be heard laughing off-camera. Varney treated Frank’s argument with total incredulity, offering up ripostes such as “That’s outrageous! That is outrageous!” and “That’s nonsense! That is nonsense!” Turning the topic to his own inspiring rags-to-riches tale, Varney asked: “Do you know what risk is involved in trying to work for a major American network with a British accent?”

For me, the rampant Randism that permeates the Republican Party is the most aggravating aspect.  I can dismiss the tenthers, birthers, and wingnut evangelicals as just people who just don’t get it.  The problem with Randism is that it seduces the rich and powerful by stroking their egos, which can cause much, much bigger problems.

It’s one thing to have 30,000 people show up to wave crazy signs at a tea party protest.  It’s quite another to have nearly every powerful business manager devoted to an ideology that does nothing to advance the causes of the middle class, and does everything to further entrench runaway income inequality.  This is a philosophy that creates a morally triumphant rationale for stepping on the masses, for smacking away the outstretched hand of the less fortunate.  A philosophy that glorifies the massive compilation of wealth as the only way to prove yourself to society.

The thing is, as much as I find most of this morally repugnant, that’s not the reason it’s so dangerous.  It’s so dangerous because it doesn’t work. It doesn’t create more economic growth.  It doesn’t create a more stable society.  It doesn’t lead to more personal freedom.  It leads to booms and busts.  It leads to inequality and crime.  It leads to riots and crackdowns.

These are the reasons that this ideology must be stopped.  Because a better America does not spring from the Blackberry of the CEO, it is born from hard work and prosperity of the middle class.

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With “death panel” rumors abound, it far past due to have a simple explanation of what the health care reform proposal on the Hill is all about.  Enter Nick Beaudrot:

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When put into this context, we can see that the nefarious public option is relatively minor in scope.  The real big reforms are the added consumer protections, coupled with employer mandates and health care exchanges.  Not to say that the public option should be dropped, because I think it would be a significant upgrade to the system, but I wouldn’t want a bill to get killed simply because it didn’t contain one.

Having said that, it becomes even more clear that all those grannies out there have nothing to fear, because there will be no change to Medicare.  That is, there’s no change anymore, now that expanding Medicare benefits to cover end-of-life counseling has been stricken from the bill, because that was obviously unacceptable.

On a much larger note, it blows my mind that a political party can be continued to be taken seriously after knowingly and maliciously lying to the American people.  In this particular case, lying to little old ladies.

These people cannot be allowed to shape policy in this country.  It’s time to boycott the GOP and completely shut them out of the legislative process.  I have no interest whatsoever in bipartisanship unless both sides are acting in good faith, and it’s clear that the GOP has no intention of that.

Republican Party, you’re dead to me.

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train_wreck1

Just when you thought Sarah Palin, the shining star of the Republican Party, was slowly fading away, she goes and does this:

In a stunning announcement whose shockwaves will likely reverberate from Alaska’s state capitol to the Beltway politics of Washington, D.C., Gov. Sarah Palin said Friday morning that she will resign her office July 26.

“I really don’t want to disappoint anyone with this announcement,” Palin said during the press conference at her home. “Not with the decision that I have made. All I can ask is that you trust me with this decision and know that it is no more politics as usual.”

The official reason?  She’s not running for re-election so she doesn’t want to be a lame duck governor.  Right…

Obviously, the hastiness of the decision and the lack of substance in the resignation speech, coupled with the fact that she delivered it on a Friday during a holiday weekend (hell, I didn’t even hear about it until the day after), is leading people to believe that something else is afoot.

Sullivan ponders:

What could that shoe be? Some unknown ethics inquiry? Some big official scandal about to break? The free house-construction no-one quite resolved? Trooper Wooten’s revenge? Bristol can’t take the bullshit any more and has sold a tell-all? Levi just got a lot of money from the Enquirer? Sherri Johnston has implicated a Palin in her drug-bust? Did Track get in trouble again? Is there another unplanned pregnancy somewhere? Someone took a hike on the Appalachian trail? Has Lyda Green finally gone nuclear? Has Mercedes got a book contract?  Or has she pushed Levi one step too far? Is Trig really Tina Fey’s child?

The number of potential enemies and victims with an ax to grind and a lucrative story to tell is endless. Who can say? But the abruptness of the withdrawal is so weird one has to wonder.

Fasten your seat belts.  I have a feeling we’re headed for a grand finale in the epic train wreck that is The Sarah Palin Express.

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So far, she’s been called an “Identity Politics over Merit” pick, a racist, a reverse racist, Maria, Obama’s Miers, and a spendthrift.  Oh, and pronouncing her name correctly is apparently anti-American as well.

Meanwhile, Yglesias is pretty fired up:

But for all that, I have to say that I am really truly deeply and personally pissed off my the tenor of a lot of the commentary on Sonia Sotomayor. The idea that any time a person with a Spanish last name is tapped for a job, his or her entire lifetime of accomplishments is going to be wiped out in a riptide of bitching and moaning about “identity politics” is not a fun concept for me to contemplated. Qualifications like time at Princeton, Yale Law, and on the Circuit Court that work well for guys with Italian names suddenly don’t work if you have a Spanish name. Heaven forbid someone were to decide that there ought to be at least one Hispanic columnist at a major American newspaper.

Somehow, when George W. Bush affects a Texas accent, that’s not identity politics. When John Edwards gets a VP nomination, that’s not identity politics. But Sonia Sotomayor! Oh my heavens!

At any rate, Ann Friedman wrote a great piece on the hypocrisy of this back during the Democratic primary. And I think this item from Neil Sinhababu on constructing political identities is insightful. I think conservatives are playing with fire here, and underestimating the number of, say, Mexican-Americans in Texas who didn’t think of themselves as having a great deal in common with Puerto Ricans from New York who are waking up today to find that in the eyes of the conservative movement normal qualifications for office don’t count unless you’re a white Anglo.

Which was followed by his perfect analysis of the Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee:

I was going to say something mean about the minority party members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, but then I took a look at the membership and I realized something important:

— Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
— Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
— Charles Grassley (R-IA)
— Jon Kyl (R-AZ)
— Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
— John Cornyn (R-TX)
— Tom Coburn (R-OK)

Those guys are really qualified! Not a woman or minority among them! No identity politics, no weak affirmative action picks, just the straight-up best-qualified white men the country has to offer. An absolutely, positively stellar group. Unadorned meritocracy in action. A thing to behold.

Meanwhile, hilzoy actually looks at the record.  How novel!

The GOP is truely a ridiculously tone-deaf operation.  As if their problems with Hispanics weren’t already big enough.  And, the truly sad part is that most Hispanics would be sympathetic to the GOP’s social conservatism, yet they force them out of the party with all of this thinly veiled racism and blather about “preferential treatment.”

The way this is going, the Democrats will not only take New Mexico in 2012, but Texas and Arizona as well.

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John Boehner in an amazingly ridiculous performance on This Week:

What becomes clear after all of this, besides the fact that John Boehner needs some remedial science classes (carcinogen!?!), is that the Republicans have zero policy ideas for climate change.  This really isn’t problem if no one thinks that uncontrolled carbon dioxide emissions are an issue, but a lot of people do.  So the GOP ends up in this weird position of simultaneously proclaiming climate change as a problem, but not doing anything to control carbon emissions.  It’s a strange sort of accommodating approach to two competing interests, and it leads to a completely incoherent policy.

Yet another example of the modern Republican Party:  The Party of No Ideas.

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Scott Horton (via hilzoy):

Senate Republicans are now privately threatening to derail the confirmation of key Obama administration nominees for top legal positions by linking the votes to suppressing critical torture memos from the Bush era. A reliable Justice Department source advises me that Senate Republicans are planning to “go nuclear” over the nominations of Dawn Johnsen as chief of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) in the Department of Justice and Yale Law School Dean Harold Koh as State Department legal counsel if the torture documents are made public. The source says these threats are the principal reason for the Obama administration’s abrupt pull back last week from a commitment to release some of the documents. A Republican Senate source confirms the strategy. It now appears that Republicans are seeking an Obama commitment to safeguard the Bush administration’s darkest secrets in exchange for letting these nominations go forward. [...]

The Justice Department source confirms to me that Brennan has consistently opposed making public the torture memos—and any other details about the operations of the extraordinary renditions program— but this source suggests that concern about the G.O.P.’s roadblock in the confirmation process is the principle reason that the memos were not released. Republican senators have expressed strong reservations about their promised exposure, expressing alarm that a critique of the memos by Justice’s ethics office (Office of Professional Responsibility) will also be released. “There was no ‘direct’ threat,” said the source, “but the message was communicated clearly—if the OLC and OPR memoranda are released to the public, there will be war.” This is understood as a threat to filibuster the nominations of Johnsen and Koh. Not only are they among the most prominent academic critics of the torture memoranda, but are also viewed as the strongest advocates for release of the torture memos on Obama’s legal policy team.

You want a war?  FIne.  We’ll give you war.  If those memos aren’t released, and/or Dawn Johnsen is not confirmed as head of the OLC, JTB will “go nuclear.”  I say this a lot, but I really mean it this time: I will not rest if this stands.  This is a landmark issue for me, and I will scream from the rooftops if I have to.

And damn it, I shouldn’t have to do this.  The Senate Democrats need to grow a pair and stand up to this garbage.  The GOP lost in 2008.  They lost real bad.  They shouldn’t have unilateral authority to blackmail the President into not doing something within his prerogative as Chief Executive.  The want to filibuster?  FIne.  Let’s have a damn filibuster.  I want to see 24/7 debate on the Senae floor, cots and all.  I want CNN to constantly broadcast for hours on end that the Republican Party supports secret legal opinions, and furthermore, is willing to hold up the entire schedule of the Senate to preserve said memos.  You can even squeeze that on a bumper sticker:

GOP ♥ Secret Legal Opinions

GOP ♥ Torture

If the GOP wants war, we’ll give it to them.

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Hot off the presses, from “The Republican Road to Recovery”

Democrats assume that the free-market system has failed and that a more robust federal government must now rescue the nation. The American people reject that notion and know, as Republicans do, that government has failed and that this financial crisis is the result of decades of misguided government policies that interfered with the free-market. In addition to a loose monetary policy by the Federal Reserve that fueled a housing boom, government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and federal mandates that weakened lending standards contributed to a perfect storm of government-induced failure.

Unbelievable.

The GOP is now a fringe party, full of fringe ideas, and occupied by fringe zealots.  It’s pure Austrian School garbage.

It should now be the goal of the Democratic party to pass the budget without a single Republican vote.  It certainly would make me feel better.  I don’t want anything in the budget that looks good to this group of out-of-touch, anti-information, market fundamentalists.

[Update]

Nate provides a much lighter post.  Hilarious.

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David Frum doesn’t like where the GOP is headed:

In 1988 George H.W. Bush beat Michael Dukakis among college graduates by 25 points. Nothing unusual there: Republicans have owned the college-graduate vote. But in 1992 Ross Perot led an exodus of the college-educated out of the GOP, and they never fully returned. In 2008 Obama beat John McCain among college graduates by 8 points, the first Democratic win among B.A. holders since exit polling began. [...]

In 1984 Reagan won young voters by 20 points; the elder Bush won voters under 30 again in 1988. Since that year, the Democrats have won the under-30 vote in five consecutive presidential elections. Voters who turned 20 between 2000 and 2005 are the most lopsidedly Democratic age cohort in the electorate. If they eat right, exercise and wear seat belts, they will be voting against George W. Bush well into the 2060s.

I certainly will be.

His prescription?

We need to modulate our social conservatism (not jettison—modulate). The GOP will remain a predominantly conservative party and a predominantly pro-life party. But especially on gay-rights issues, the under-30 generation has arrived at a new consensus. Our party seems to be running to govern a country that no longer exists. The rule that both our presidential and vice presidential candidates must always be pro-life has become counterproductive: McCain’s only hope of winning the presidency in 2008 was to carry Pennsylvania, and yet Pennsylvania’s most successful Republican vote winner, former governor Tom Ridge, was barred from the ticket because he’s pro-choice.

We need an environmental message. You don’t have to accept Al Gore’s predictions of imminent gloom to accept that it cannot be healthy to pump gigatons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. We are rightly mistrustful of liberal environmentalist disrespect for property rights. But property owners also care about property values, about conservation, and as a party of property owners we should be taking those values more seriously.

Above all, we need to take governing seriously again. Voters have long associated Democrats with corrupt urban machines, Republicans with personal integrity and fiscal responsibility. Even ultraliberal states like Massachusetts would elect Republican governors like Frank Sargent, Leverett Saltonstall, William Weld and Mitt Romney precisely to keep an austere eye on the depredations of Democratic legislators. After Iraq, Katrina and Harriet Miers, Democrats surged to a five-to-three advantage on the competence and ethics questions. And that was before we put Sarah Palin on our national ticket.

The GOP needs a complete makeover.  Unfortunately, there’s no one in elected office willing to lead the charge and fight the civil war.  You didn’t make it anywhere in the past 20 years in the Republican Party if you weren’t loyal, and now, with a severely damaged brand, no one knows how to step outside the box.

It’s really kind of sad, but I doubt I’ll lose sleep over it.

[h/t Sullivan]

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