Whatever the merits of Buckley Conservatism as a theoretical construct, it is utterly worthless as a political one. Since the whole point of ideology is to shape politics, an ideology that utterly fails in politics is worthless. Pretty much the only thing they can do well is explain why they lost and even there they manage to screw up. Somehow, the great conservative minds managed to convince themselves that the reason Romney lost was that he was not mushy enough. People can be forgiven for thinking it is deliberate.
News brings word that the House Republicans were stymied by the tiny minority of Democrats over the Zika response. The bill is to fund a response to the Zika virus that is spreading north from South America via mosquitoes and immigrants. The liberals demanded abortion provisions in the bill, which has nothing to do with abortion, but the Left never takes its eye off the ball. They attach abortion provisions to everything knowing the Right is too stupid to stop them.
The Left knows how to play the game. They know that the Right will want to look like good citizens and eventually cave on the abortion provisions just to get the Zika bill passed. Even if they don’t, there are a thousand other bills they will do the same thing with so eventually they will get what they want. The Left never takes a break, They are always pressing forward. There’s no deal you can strike with them that will end their attacks. They are like Muslims in this regard.
Another example is this stupid flag bill the House just passed. What on God’s green earth are this idiots thinking? This bill does nothing for Republicans and helps Democrats. On pure politics alone, the bill should have died in some no name committee. If the Democrats really wanted this bill, then the smart play is to attach a dozen poison pill amendments that lets the GOP vote for it, but makes Democrats vote against it. That’s how a majority handles the minority in a parliament.
But that’s not how the Wuss Right thinks. They are always seeking to curry favor with the Left. Paul Ryan would drop to his knees and beg Obama for forgiveness if he thought there was some chance he would give it. He spends more time plotting to derail those to his Right than he does trying to stop the Left. These are small issues that garner no attention in the media yet Ryan and his fellow “principled” conservatives can’t summon the courage to tell the Left to pound sand.
What’s maddening about this and why voters have thrown in the towel on these guys, is that they don’t seem to know the basics of politics. These men and women somehow managed to get elected without understanding how parliaments work. It’s tempting to think, as many in the Dissident Right claim, that it is deliberate. That’s the Moldbugian thesis. Republicans are the outer party and Democrats are the inner party. The conservative commentariat are just the fluffers for the stars of the political theater.
The argument against that is if they were truly so clever as to perpetuate this elaborate ruse on the public, they would do it so no one noticed. In reality, the Republican Party is just the land of misfit toys. The “conservatives” are just guys who tick the boxes they are told to tick, but don’t think much about it. There are exceptions, but most could just as easily be Anarcho-Syndicalists or Whigs. They just like the lifestyle and they are not very good at anything other than toadyism.
Paul Ryan has been in politics his whole life, He has done nothing else. We live in the age of mass media where everyone knows about everything instantly. He has to know he is about as popular with Republican voters as testicular cancer. He has to know his party is under the microscope. Yet, he can’t figure out how to score some small victories to maybe claw a little credibility back in time for the elections. That’s not a conspiracy. That’s stupidity. That’s the Stupid Party way.