Monday, May 19, 2008

Victor Davis Hanson on Unmoored Republicans

Republicans in Congress are leaderless, silent, paniced and delusional. They have lost there bearings since the end of the Regan era. They have no fiscal conservatism and seem to think the answer to their woes may be emulate the left. Its not. Victor Davis Hanson weighs in at PJM with his own statement for a Republican platform:


This from VDH writing at Pajamas Media:

. . . What mystifies is the paralysis of Republicans and their impotent protestations that “Bush did it”. The truth is that Congressional Republicans, responsible for turning principles into governance, deserve to lose—unless they craft clear positions that won’t be compromised and then offer them as alternative choices to the voters this fall. Here are some examples:

Spending: a balanced budget, no exceptions. Voters are tired of hearing that this or that projection assures a balanced budget in 2, 3, or 5 years. Revenues continue to soar after the tax cuts, so the problem is too much going out, not too little coming in. Surpluses are preferable to deficits, since we want to retire, not add to out foreign debt. . . .

The War: Afghanistan and Iraq have radically improved. Anti-war hype and slurs are a year out of date. We are finally on the edge of having done the impossible: removed the most odious regimes in the Middle East and fostered constitutional governments in their places. Spending on general defense and the war still run at only 4% of GDP, not high by historical levels. The reforming Petraeus army is stronger and wiser, despite the toll of war, for our ordeals in the Middle East. As troops slowly begin to come home next year, let everyone take credit for it.

Energy: Drill, explore, conserve. The answer does not lie in any one area, but in the willingness to produce more energy in all of them. We must ensure more oil, coal, and nuclear power, conserve more energy as we produce more—to prevent going broke while we transition to next-generation fuels.

Why should others abroad, who are far less careful, extract oil for us in areas of the world more fragile than our own? We must end the notion that ANWR only yields a million barrels a day, or the coasts only 2 million, or tar sands or shale only a million, or nuclear power and coal only so many megawatts of power. To paraphrase, Sen. Dirksen—‘a million barrels a day here, a million there, pretty soon it adds up to real production.’

Economy: We are in a natural down cycle, not the Great Depression—interest rates, unemployment, economic growth, and stock prices do not reflect a recession. Use this downturn as a warning not to spend what we don’t have when things rebound.

Immigration: Close the border, and then, and only then, argue over what’s next. Stop illegal entries, while we promote assimilation, the English language, integration, and education in American civics. Do that and most of our seemingly insurmountable problems will shrink as we endlessly bicker over amnesty, guest workers, and legal quotas.

Trade: free and supervised trade creates more jobs, makes us more competitive, and fosters alliances. Protectionism does the opposite. Americans like to compete and usually win—when they know the rules of the contest are fair and clearly explained to them.

Foreign Policy: Neither provoke nor talk to our enemies in the Middle East, Asia, or South America. Instead, cultivate our allies, build our defenses—and be ready for anything.

Homeland Security: the framework is in place. Let the Democrats try to repeal it. Let them make the argument that the Patriot Act and Guantanamo haven’t made us safer.

Ethics: Warn Republicans that in matters of sex, influence peddling, and graft, the Party of family values suffers the additional wage of hypocrisy. So the tolerance level for these sins is zero.

If Republicans could adopt such a simple message, stick to it, and find the most articulate spokespeople, they could still win.

. . . The In short, the Republicans’ problem? They forgot who they were and can’t explain what they might be. They need to go back to basics, adopt conservative principles to confront new challenges, and then find the most effective spokesmen they can to explain their positions—hourly.

Read the entire article.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Victor David Hanson is Victor DAVIS Hanson!