Posted on | March 19, 2012 | 18 Comments
And so it was that later
as McCotter told his tale
Smitty’s face, at first just ghostly,
turned a whiter shade of GOPale
McCotter laments at length at Ricochet, and I excerpt:
“I want to shout, but I can’t hardly speak”
Presently, Rock-n-Roll Reaganites are in exile on Lame Street. Bored in the conservative media establishment’s cultural gutters; beset by crony capitalism’s billionaire beggars; and bewildered by the fervid hucksters of “Cliff’s Notes” Constitutionalism, Rock-n-Roll Reaganites possess the same prospects for a return to cultural relevance as does Alex P. Keaton’s alter ego’s flick, Poison Ivy.
In today’s twitter-splintered parlance: “WTF?”
“It’s all mesmerized, all that inside me”
To understand what went recently wrong, we must examine what went initially right, so to speak.
In 1980, the long simmering conservative movement boiled over with Reagan’s election. The only President who made a living in the arts (and served as an elected union leader), Reagan deftly melded his political and theatrical sensibilities and timing throughout his Presidency; and ensured conservatism retained the virtues that sustained it during its rise to political and cultural prominence. Creative, entrepreneurial, impish, rebellious and, above all, rooted in the shared experiences of Americans, conservatism was called the “counter-counter-culture” – a testament its clear and present threat and ultimate transcendence of the politically and culturally dominant liberalism.
“Headed for the overload”
But nothing undoes like excess. Insensate to the cultural counter-stroke that was the Baby-Boomer Bill Clinton’s Presidency, in the aftermath of the 1994 “Republican Revolution” and the 2004 Presidential re-election of George W. Bush, the GOP hubristically declared it had attained a “permanent majority.” This was akin to Keith Richards saying he was completely straight. Dismissive of the late Andrew Breitbart’s dictum that “culture is downstream from politics”; rapt with their power and perks; and absent inspiration and vision, the flush Republican “leadership” contented itself with living off the fumes of the Reagan Revolution and wallowing in the mire of pork barrel politics and lame managerial talking points. Good times.
Read the whole thing. I’m a tremendous fan of McCotter; I think he’s one of the straighter shooters in the Progressive Pride parade. The crux of his argument seems to be the intersection of “Cliff’s Notes” Constitutionalism and Rock-n-Roll Reaganites.
The article works well as a retrospective of sorts. McCotter begins with “the idea that conservatism was once hip is as hard to imagine as 4% unemployment rates and the Flock of Seagulls selling records. But, alas, ’tis true.” And now there is this chorus of “Cliff’s Notes” Constitutionalists who look at the debt, the deficit-sans-budget, and the GOP and, indeed, float a “WTF?”
And so we’re making up for the education deficit, on Twitter, in blogs, at Tea Party gatherings. Regan, for all his gifts, could no more unwind a century of Progressivism than he could cheat the Iron Law of Bureaucracy. The cancer that is Progressivism has struck back with a vengeance over the last decade.
One could lament, put on some Floyd, and commence to get potted. We could bicker and argue over ‘oo betrayed their Constitutional oath more than ‘oo. The only thing that really matters, Rep. McCotter, is liberty. Everything undertaken has to be about liberty. More concretely, the enumerated powers of the Constitution. Progressivism is not Constitutionally well-founded. All of these nanny-state safety net programs that are not proper federal tasks Really. Have. To. Go.
Like geriatric rockers owning up to their tiny todgers, the GOP elite needs to come clean about just how utterly filthy, immoral, and untrustworthy the government has become. The pig’s lips have rotted away, and will accept no more lipstick. Honesty is going to mean a few careers go under the bus. Deal with it. When history judges, it’s better to be in the Bonhoeffer column than the other one.
There is a general notion that this era is coming to a close, hopefully too violent on a grand scale. But we have to get past the nadir for the slope of liberty to become positive again.