HONOLULU, July 5, 2015 — Prolonged seasons of national crisis can make or break political parties.
While the Republican Party has seen a number of significant electoral victories in taking control of Congress and even several state legislatures, the modern GOP is in a very precarious position for the future.
Traditional conservative values are declining in America because Republicans have placed the tactical goal of winning elections over the more important strategic goal of winning hearts and minds.
Conservatives should once and for all resolve to stop wistfully celebrating the America we once had and actively work to build a better future for our children to come.
Changing the cultural chemistry
The fatal conceit of today’s Republican leadership is “once we get in power, we’ll change America.” This has given rise to an extremely mercenary approach to elections in which, competing for the increasingly elusive win set, Republican candidates will say anything and do anything just to get elected, or once there, stay in office.
The end result is that conservative values never get represented, conservative voters become disenfranchised and radical liberals find big government allies no matter which party is in power.
Rather than attempting to identify who a candidate’s voters are every two or four years, the Republican Party must make an effort to create a new generation of supporters by changing the cultural chemistry of America. This means Republicans in 2015 must begin developing social, political and even theological resources today that will give rise to electoral changes not just in 2016, but well into the next century.
Step One: Turning government dependent voters into conservative armies
Thanks to inflation and government market interference, America has become addicted to government programs. The Democrats, knowing this, have successfully placed Republicans on the defensive in every single election. Hyperbolic talking points like “Republicans want single moms to starve!” “Conservatives want to take away granny’s healthcare!” and “The GOP wants to fire all low-wage union workers!” have become a staple of elections everywhere.
Conservatives never really “win” these arguments — except by getting elected and turning into tax-and-spend porkmasters themselves — because Democrats have convinced voters that Republicans are out to pull the plug on everything they like.
This, however, does not have to be the end of the story.
In general, conservatives detest the idea of government handouts either because they themselves feel shame for not being self-sufficient or because they believe that if a man doesn’t work, a man shouldn’t eat. They do not, however, have moral aversions to charitable contributions, because conservatives believe that charity, as a form of voluntary sacrifice, brings honor to an individual or to a community.
In the GOP electoral equation, voters have been told that instead of government handouts, charity should take the place of welfare. The problem is, charity remains a theoretical concept for many voters that never actually materializes.
The fastest way for the GOP to win immediate supporters is to “be” the charitable organization that feeds, clothes and supports the communities they wish to change.
For centuries in America, churches and religious charities have understood how evangelism and meeting individual physical needs go hand-in-hand. Many neighborhood churches with budgets far less than state GOP chapters provide everything from free food to grocery store gift cards, to eyeglasses, clothes, shoes and, in some cases, even cell phones for domestic violence victims.