March 10, 2005

What's Going on with the Republican Party?

An Antipodean reader who has one of the world's more ferociously conceptualizing minds emailed me this diagnosis of American politics that is very much along the lines I've been thinking as well about why conservatives win election but don't seem to accomplish anything terribly conservative with their victories. The prose style is a little sharp-cornered, but it rewards reading:

I agree that the Republican parties main problem is cognitive dissonance between the Red State’s conservative sociology and the Blue State’s constructivist* [i.e., liberal or progressive] ideology.*

So white male brains & balls allow extreme right wing REP politicos, eg Cheney and de Lay, to be the executives of US governmental power.

But white male heart & soul allow extreme left wing DEM policies -- eg de facto open borders, democracy promotion abroad -- to be the beneficiaries of US governmental power.

I think that in the post-Vietnam era there has been a division of labour between the two parties.

DEMs have been objectively better in political economy, hence the robustness of the US’s welfare state REPs have been objectively better in geo-politics, hence the robustness of the US’s warfare state.

The REPs have an edge in domestic political culture, since LBJ & EMK signed away the DEM control of the South in 1965, hence the robustness of the US’s lawfare state.

This last factor has swung White Family Males towards a covert form of Caucasian and Christian (CC) identity politics. This is why, as you have shown, the White Family Males voting bloc continue to win elections for the REPS since their fertile lineage literally keeps them in the race.

The problem for White Family Males is that their native individualism frowns on group identification and collective responsibility that goes with CC racialism and religionism. So they cannot declare themselves for their own identity political team. Instead they declare for an entity team (Proposition Nation, the military and the Constitution).

Moreover, Red State civic-minded souls must pay lip service to altruistic sounding doctrines, like multi-culti & pee-cee, which Blue State ideologues use to disarm them.

But Red State brutal-bodied males cannot help but reach for their guns when their own honor or power is threatened by Blue State criminals or terrorists.

This is not so much “white masochism” as an honest division of feeling between body, mind and soul. It sets the stage for the incidence of some pretty high-octane cognitive and cooperative dissonance. Of course a good political agent would set about dampening this, rather than amplifying it. The Bushie REPs are however interested in constantly ramping up the degree of ideological partisanship.

They are dominated by politicos who believe in the literal truth of parts of the ideology of their constructive [liberal] opponents and the literal truth of parts of the theology of their conservative forefathers. ie Blue State ideology and Red State theology.

They are also staffed by ultra-loyal & diligent party nerdy Machiavellian apparatchiks who are, as you say, more effective organizers.

Rove's problem is that he cannot make up his mind which side of that fence he wants to be on – he appears to be an apparatchik but he yearns to be a statesman.

So although the REP apparatchiks are pretty talented, as evinced by their excellent Get-Out-The-Vote effort, the REP executives are extreme utopians. This is a bad combination.

The only historical precedent I can think of for this utopian/apparatchik combination is the Communist Party during its Leninist manifestation, which showed a similar tendency towards national multiculturalism and global 4evolutionism.

The post-911 Bush admin tactic, fiendishly clever in its simplicity, was to marshal conservative nationalist White Family Male political support for liberal/progressive globalist policies. The White Family Males were therefore trapped by their ideological professions and sociological organisations into supporting (invade/invite the world) policies that are against their interests.

* I use conservative and constructive as polar opposites in cultural ideology. Apart from being etymologically more satisfying it draws attention to the inevitable dialectic of political history between the status-quo and the agitators. It seems better than regressive and progressive. The word liberal has long since lost all intellectual utility.

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