I watched the videos of Rush Limbaugh’s keynote speech at the Conservative Politcal Action Committee convention that was held in Washington, DC last week.  He was scheduled to speak for 20 minutes.  He went almost an hour and a half.  To say that he was on a roll would be an understatement.  Nobody was tapping their watch telling him he was running over.

I’m reminded of the only other time that I listened to him regularly.  1993.  First half of the Clinton administration with Democrats holding all the branches of government.  Rush embodies the Reaganesque concept of the “Happy Warrier” like few others.  The worse things look, the happier he seems.

All the people who blame Rush for the Republican collapse of the Bush administration need to listen to this and realize that nothing he is saying describes the Republican Party of the last eight years.  The Republicans became lost in the wilderness because they didn’t listen to Rush, not because they did.  Bush was a good war president because he stuck to his guns like few others, but in all else, he was a Democrat Lite.  And why should people vote for a fake when they can get the real thing.  They let the opposition frame all discussion of policy and even let the opposition define the party itself.

Rush defines Conservative.  Not Republican.  The Republicans need to decide if they are going to get onboard or just go away.

BTW:  The thing stuck into the left side of Rush’s head is the external portion of a chochlear implant.  He went completely deaf a few years back and that’s the prosthesis that corrected it.


2 comments so far

  1. The Center Square on

    The idea that Republicans have ever adhered to conservative principles — at least on fiscal matters — is a myth. There is only one tenent of fiscal conservatism that Republicans have ever embraced, and that is lowering taxes. Talk about political low-hanging fruit! Who doesn’t want to pay less in taxes?!

    But they have never undertaken to reduce the scope of government. They have never undertaken to be responsible in terms of avoiding debt. And, I mean NEVER. Not in their entire history. Read my post on this topic here:

    And the deeper problem is that conservatives and Republicans are now locked in an endless cycle of self-destruction. Conservatives fail to criticize borrow-and-spend Republicans, and thus both align themselves with the Republican Party and becmoe discredited by everyone else. Republicans try to redeem their fiscal failures by embracing the social conservative agenda, which only alienates them from the large majorities of Americans. What is left is intellectually failed conservatives, and politically failed Republicans.

  2. way2opinionated on

    In relative terms, Republican vs. Democrat, they have. But only in matter of degree.

    Ronald Reagan pushed through his tax cuts with every intent of matching spending to income (note: Every major tax cut is followed by INCREASES in revenue due to increased economic activity. So spending cuts are not necessarily part and parcel to tax cuts) But in order to get the Democratically controlled House to go along, he had to give Speaker Tip O’Neal tons of spending compromises. It was the spending compromises (can we spell bipartisanship) that drove the Reagan deficits, not the tax cuts.

    As long as Democrats/liberal/leftists have any influence over the budgeting process (and the Republicans never had a filibuster free Senate) the Republicans have never had an opportunity to show if they could or would practice the spending restraint conservatives push. I strongly suspect that the Bush II Republican congress, aka Democrat Lite, would not have. The Gingrich “Contract With America” Republicans would have been much more likely to.

    The deeper problem is the Conservatives do not have a party. The Republican Party is a mechanism for conservatives to try and channel principles through. But it is not The Conservative Party by a long shot. On the other hand, while there may be some Blue Dog Democrats who are more conservative than most, the Democratic Party is the Instrument of Leftism** in the US today.

    **There is nothing Progressive or Liberal, in the classic sense, about the Leftists today. I resent people describing the “Progressive web sites” to describe bastions of regressive and illiberal ideologies.

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