A lot is made these days of the Republican Establishment. But we forget that the real establishment is the party in charge of nearly everything– the Democratic Party.
The Democrats control the executive branch. They have for eight years and, if current polls hold out, they will for another 4-8 years.
Their agenda controls the Supreme Court as often as not (e.g., Obamacare), and with one more appointment to the Supreme Court, it will be 5-4 Democratic, including on gun control. Democrats appoint rock-solid leftists to the Court, justices who never wobble when it comes to support of gun control, encroachment on private enterprise, or the rights of the collective over the individual; Republicans appoint a combination of hard-core conservatives and wobblers.
While the Republicans control the Congress in numbers and name, the Democratic agenda rules that branch of government, as the most recent budget appropriations bill, giving Obama everything he wanted and then some, attests.
The Democratic Party is, by and large, united and decisive. They might fight over Bernie Sanders vs. Hillary Clinton right now, but in the end they all want the same things: A weak American defense and virtually unlimited government spending domestically, along with control over the economy.
Big, intrusive government, high taxes, strong regulation and control of business, represent the established way of things. The politicians we all hate are the byproduct of all this government. If we had retained the severely limited government mandated by the Constitution, there would still be corrupt politicians; but their corruption would not matter, because they would not possess all the power over money, business, and life that they do.
Democrats are the ones who instituted and wish to preserve all this active government control over people’s lives. Other than gun control and complete nationalization of the economy, they’ve got everything they could want. Democrats are the ones with something to conserve. That’s why so many of them are intolerant of dissension. The only “change” left for them to impose is to complete the job of socialism, as Bernie Sanders seeks to do. On our present course, it will happen regardless, because once you open the door to a little socialism, then you get a lot, and eventually that’s all you have. The government as we know it is the domain of the Democrats.
Taxes are high and will continue to get higher. Even Republicans don’t talk about tax cuts any longer. Republicans have stopped talking about cutting government, because we all know they never do; it’s up to Democrats to preserve all that government spending, and progressively increase it. Unless, of course, we’re talking about defense, which will continue to be cut. As for Republicans, it does not matter if they disagree. Republicans always go along to get along, which is why their party has imploded and no longer matters.
The battle over the Republican Establishment is really a battle over whether the Republicans should continue to enact the Democrats’ agenda, or completely part company with it. Donald Trump’s anger and bluster suits the temperament of those Republicans who are fed up with government as we know it. But temperament and attitude will not, by themselves, change a thing. Some prefer Ted Cruz because of his more mature temperament. But watching him on the campaign trail, he has been pulled into Trump’s antics, trying to beat him at his own game, which will never happen. Also, I have taken the time to read both of Trump’s books and Ted Cruz’s book. While Trump is thin on specifics, Cruz is even thinner. He may be a bright and articulate man, but it’s not especially clear where he would take us, either. His central animating force seems not to be liberty so much as faith, but faith and freedom are opposites (Ayn Rand fans, please take note).
In the battle over the role of government in the life of the individual, the Democrats have far more to lose. They are not the party of health care. They only want health care if it’s controlled and funded by the government. They are not the party of economic growth. The economy grows less than ever before, but they still win the presidency regardless of the economy (e.g., 2012), so they no longer feel accountable for economic growth. They are not the party of individual rights. Nobody who would deny the individual the right to defend himself from a criminal or a terrorist, by owning a gun, cares for the rights of the individual at all. The right to a free abortion or the sex partner of your choice matters little, not if you have no right to defend your own life.
Conservatives, if they really believe what they say, should stop calling themselves conservatives. The real conservatives are the ones who wish to preserve the government as we know it. While there are plenty of Republicans who wish to do so, the Democrats remain the real deal.
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