Summary: The votes are counted. The Democratic Party defeated the GOP. The Left won a phantom victory. The Right won the real thing. This is not the full story about the election, which has so many threads (each with its own implications). It might be the most important. Also — see the posters at the end of the post.
It’s time to add another post to the Smackdowns Page: President Romney will prove an effective President, reshaping America for his constituents., posted in April 2012. Romney surprised me by hiring top professionals but running an incompetent campaign, most especially by failing to move to the center after securing the nomination (this error epitomized by his choice of Ryan as VP). (Update:) Also, the economy was stronger than I anticipated (which by itself explains Obama’s win).
But that’s not the big story. There are two more important stories at work — longer in duration, larger in effect on America. Stranger and more complex than what I foresaw.
- The effect of the defeats in 2008 and 2012 on the GOP.
- The victory of conservatives that will change the course of America
(1) The effect of the defeats in 2008 and 2012 on the GOP
In November 2008 I wrote that the GOP faced two choices:
Door #1: reflection and rebuilding
This option would have been far more difficult. What did the Grand Old Party do wrong? How should its platform change to better express its beliefs for the 21st century? How can it offer something to America that is more than a weak echo of the Democratic Party’s solutions, instead of policies attractive only to a small extreme?
Door #2: Purge the Party, keeping only the faithful led by Rush and Fox
This would have two results:
(a) The GOP would become irrelevant extremists, like the Green and Socialist parties, as both membership and (equally or more important) funding dwindle. Few Americans, and even fewer in our ruling elites, have much interest in losers. No matter how pure their ideology.
(b) The center of gravity to America’s political ideological spectrum would shift left. In most of America the primaries would become the key contests in local, State, and national elections, are they are in so many areas today (due to both local political dominance plus gerrymandering).
In 2008 the GOP chose Door #2 (they face the exact same choices today). But the result was the opposite of what I forecast.
(2) The victory of conservatives will change the course of America
True victory comes from converting opponents to adherents. As the GOP has done with the Democratic Party in some many areas of public policy. They differ on what weeds we can smoke, who does what in the bedroom — and about the consequences (contraception, abortion, aid to single mothers).
Look at the similarities in their policies.
- Both parties serve the banks, lavish public funds on defense contractors, and intend to cut social welfare benefits.
- Both support the Long War (now based on a campaign of assassinations) against fundamentalist Islam, and the war on Iran.
- Both are advocates for our mad profitless American Empire, and steadily erode civil liberties.
- Both support Israel’s interests over America’s.
- Both approve the massive gulag holding 2.3 million Americans.
- While both talk big, neither plans large changes in the complex American flat tax system (ie, a roughly flat rate for most Americans except the poor, calculated including all taxes at all levels).
Obama’s signature domestic policy achievement consists of enacting Romney’s healthcare plan — designed by Heritage and other GOP think-tanks, applauded by Newt Gingrich. A plan more conservative than Nixon proposed in 1974, let alone any proposed by liberals.
Conservatives have shifted the Overton Window — the range of thought politically viable at any time — decisively to the Right. That’s a historic victory, and one likely to continue for some time.
The result has left the Left as orphans, with no political home — while the Right owns the GOP.
The Right should be celebrating tonight. The Left should mourn. What might change this situation?
(3) This series about the results of Campaign 2012
- Conservatives, celebrate the historic victory you won today!
- The votes were counted and one wing of our one ruling party won. Rejoice!
- How Obama AND conservatives both won on Tuesday
- Civil rights just took a step forward, the slow hard way. The right way.
- The hidden major party, the key to political control of America
(4) For more information bout conservatives and the Republican Party
How the GOP has evolved:
- Let’s play round 2 of “Name That Liberal”
- Let’s play round 3 of “Name That Liberal”
- The evolution of the Republican Party has shaped America during the past fifty years, 8 May 2010
- Conservatives oppose the new START treaty, as they opposed even the earlier version negotiated by Ronald Reagan, 24 July 2010
What happens next to the GOP?
- What happens to the Republican Party after the election?, 2 November 2008
- R.I.P., G.O.P. – a well-deserved end, 7 November 2008 — A history of the New GOP, an ugly story.
- Conservative reflections about America – starting to use their time in the wilderness to think, 15 November 2008
- Conservatives should look back before attempting to move forward, 5 December 2008
The Republican’s response to defeat in 2008:
- Republicans have found a sure-fire path to victory in the November elections, 5 February 2010
- Why Conservatives are winning: they use the WMD of political debate, 28 April 2011
- The significance for America of Romney’s choice of Ryan as VP, 11 August 2012
About the Republican Party of today
- Two contrasting views of the Republican Party, 23 May 2010
- Will people on the right help cut Federal spending?, 19 June 2010
- The Republicans are serious about the budget. The results could be ugly., 24 November 2010
- Why do Rep Ryan and the Republicans want to gut America’s military defenses?, 14 April 2011
- Mitt Romney and the Empire of Hubris. Setting America on a path to decline., 10 October 2011
- A modern conservative dresses up Mr. Potter to suit our libertarian fashions, 17 November 2011
- Ron Paul’s exotic past tells us much about him, the GOP, libertarians – and about us, 27 December 2011
- The key to modern American politics: the Right-Wing Id Unzipped, 15 February 2012
- Why Republicans Need Remedial Math: Their Budget Plans Explode the Deficit, 16 March 2012
- What every American must know about the Republican Party, 16 October 2012