Careful What You Wish For

By
June 29, 2009

Via Michelle, Stacy McCain says not one more cent for the NRCC because of eight turncoat Republicans. That's fine. But you'll only make the problem worse. I think people misunderstood my previous post on this issue.

That isn't where the bulk of party money is going. And whatever does get there is watered dow by expensive media markets. That's, in essence, the problem. The GOP strategy and the DNC strategy, until recently, have been to aggressively go after only the more winnable seats. Two things have to happen. But cutting off the money won't make it so.

First, you need leadership that seriously believes a lower tax, smaller government, less government regulation platform can win anywhere. Because it can. Then you'll actually need more money to support it nationally, not less.

Without pushing the first issue and only advocating the second, no more money will only ensure that even less money gets spent in the Northeast. And that means you may as well start swearing in even more liberal Democrats and Republicans.

Any real change has to start from the ground up. Ranting about witholding money might make you feel good. And there's nothing wrong with doing it, provided you're sending the right message as to what will be required to motivate you to support the GOP, again.

You'd actually be better off to raise money yourself and give it to more conservative candidates, just as the Left did to some degree with politicians they liked. I believe RedState already has that type of initiative. They're even raising money specifically for a more conservative candidate to take on Boxer – Chuck Devore. That's the way to get what you want by channeling money, not simply withholding it because one is angry.

There is a rumor in Washington that Senator John Cornyn is desperately trying to get Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner to jump into the California Senate race against Chuck Devore in the GOP Primary. Poizner is running for Governor currently.

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Comments:
  1. Cory says:

    I think that’s wise to give money to certain candidates instead of the party as a whole, especially considering the recent split of interest between many Republicans. There has been some coverage suggesting the GOP is becoming obsolete and why put money in a potentially extinct party? I think that’s a little extreme, but I do think there will be a split.
    http://www.newsy.com/videos/gop_looking_for_leadership

  2. seekeronos says:

    I think the USA (that is, the one we have been born under and enjoyed the rights as granted by God as documented by the Declaration of Independence and acknowledged by the Constitution) …
    … is a dying nation. A quasi-empire in its death throes, which has been and continues to decline into an authoritarian police state designed to accrue maximum power to the statist and socialist politician class (regardless of the D or the R after their names).
    The GOP, if it is lucky, will split into the “moderate” wing of the D’s (i.e. RINOs) and the rest will either join hands with the Constitution Party, the Libertarian Party, or simply run as (horrifically underfunded) independent candidates against the RINOs, further diluting the votes and ensuring a permanent socialist/”democratic” hypermajority.
    Our only hope is to draw a clear line in the sand that the RINOs will never cross, and support Constitutionalist conservatives who will put family values, liberty, and small-governance principles first.
    The so-called “Progressives” have only tyranny and socialism planned for the rotting corpse of this nation: all of the best for them, and the crumbs for the masses.
    I do not see much hope for us, though… with socialists and statists in both parties collaborating to fatten themselves first and only, and a cowardly, craven media that thinks only of itself as a mediator between the enlightened politician class on high, and the dumb masses below.

  3. mark l. says:

    fiscal conservatism in nj should be selling like snow cones in hell.
    the state’s net loss on federal taxes is nearly equivalent to the enitre state budget, roughly 30-35 billion.
    the end results is that nj residents pay ridiculous property taxes, so that their federal tax money can spread around to red states. NJ is out there closing the budget for at least 10 other states…
    basically, don’t give up on nj, but in some respects stacy is right. sending money to support candidates in the north without a shred of fiscal conservatism, just becuase they say they are conservative, is not a winning solution.
    an imperfect solution?
    spend the money at the same level of support the candidate receives in the primary, based on voter turnout.

  4. Jack Okie says:

    mark l.:
    Not just conservative: federalist. New Jersey is a great example of a state that would benefit from observance of the Tenth Amendment, and an argument that even liberal states like Massachusetts and California could be persuaded to join the Tenth Amendment bandwagon. After all, one can argue that Massachusetts and California should be able to fund whatever whacked out liberal idea they choose, and if it weren’t for those rapacious pols in Washington hoovering all the money out of their states they could easily afford it.

  5. IslamoLlama says:

    “– I think the USA (that is, the one we have been born under and enjoyed the rights as granted by God as documented by the Declaration of Independence and acknowledged by the Constitution) …
    … is a dying nation. –”
    So we’ve heard. You’ve been marching around with “The End Is Near” signs stapled to your ass and forehead for years. I just regret not knowing you during the economic collapse in ’82, or hyperinflation in the 70s, or Vietnam, or WW2, or The Great Depression, …
    No doubt, you are an absolute joy to be around at parties.

  6. mark l. says:

    “You’ve been marching around with “The End Is Near” signs stapled to your ass and forehead for years.”
    after eight years of listening to the left, on the implications of bush upon this country, I really wouldn’t point out fringe arguments.
    ‘the dying nation’ meme’…
    most valuable resource a country can have?
    money.
    hint: it is not a renweable resource.
    we are bleeding at a rate now where we cannot even transfuse enough(via debt) into keeping the ‘body’ of this nation alive. We are dying…we were dying under bush, but we are getting ready to spend the next 15 years in critical care.

  7. John says:

    >>> First, you need leadership that seriously believes a lower tax, smaller government, less government regulation platform can win anywhere.
    Lol! The Republican Party has never, ever believed this let alone acted on it. They pretend just long enough to get elected, then proceed to spend like drunken liberals.
    Voting for Republicans is a waste of time and energy because a) they believe in nothing (other than getting elected and stealing more taxpayer money) and b) they have no spine (their “principles” fold like a lawnchair the instant the media starts demonizing them, as Schwarzenegger did.
    I’m content to allow the liberals to wreck the country. The sooner they utterly destroy us, the sooner we can start all over. I have no delusions about Republicans saving the country or lowering the size and expense of government.

  8. smitty says:

    Dan,
    Two quotes from your post: “That’s fine. But you’ll only make the problem worse.”
    and:
    “Any real change has to start from the ground up. Ranting about witholding money might make you feel good. And there’s nothing wrong with doing it, provided you’re sending the right message as to what will be required to motivate you to support the GOP, again.
    You’d actually be better off to raise money yourself and give it to more conservative candidates, just as the Left did to some degree with politicians they liked.”
    So, do you support the Not One Red Cent viewpoint, or no? At a glance, you seem to have taken a rather confusing stance. If the GOP doesn’t understand that its conservative bluff is being called, then the point is moot, and the moderate/progressive/closet-nihilists have won.
    Scorched earth, baby: scorched earth.

  9. Sean says:

    I wouldn’t discount the “dying nation” idea as fringe.
    Not too long ago there was a poll of Texans, and about 20% of them thought seceding from the US was a good idea.
    That’s a substantial number, and these hard times have plenty of room to get worse. That was before the massive deficits of the new administration, massive new taxes on Texas’ big industry (oil) and before the Socialized medicine to come.
    In a year or two, if the economy is still in the tank or, God forbid, worse, that number will likely be considerably higher. The idea is not very far from being held by an elecorally significant number of Texans as it is.
    Lets face it, you don’t have to be a fringe loon to look at what the Federal government of today is doing and ask yourself “how much of that is really what the framers of our nation wanted”? I know Blue-staters think that the significance of the Constitution these days is trivial (or even antiquated and obsolete), but there is a substantial number of Red-staters who do not share that view, and are really starting to wake up.
    It may seem “fringe” to some Blue-staters, but give it a year or two. Growing government has basically proven irreversible no matter where it’s been. Irreversible, that is, until dissolution.
    It may very well begin to occur to Red Staters that walking away from a debt per capita of $36,000 (an amount which is planned to continue to grow by a few thousand dollars per year for many years to come by the estimates of even the best-case scenarios) to fund Blue-State driven policies is a viable option.
    Elected Republican politicians did not help over the past 8 years. Folks feel like there’s no way within the current political system to get a more responsible government. There seems to be no other option than to re-establish the United States between those who believe in the Constitution and those who really have no use for it.

  10. Trouble says:

    If I might suggest taking a look:
    http://www.modernwhig.org
    It’s not about conservatism; it’s about basic responsibility.
    Call me an optimist, but I don’t think our Republic or our Constitution are dying. I think the welfare state is dying. The State of Union and the Constitution are perpetual. The government is not.
    LONG LIVE THE REPUBLIC

  11. ezag says:

    I think Republicans will do fine if they pursue policy objectives instead of specific legislation (learn from Obama). These can be formulated with real substance, but can also be reduced to slogans. Examples: climate change can be addressed with nukes and sold on the idea they are cheaper than alternatives; tax reform can be sold as a constitutional amendment along the lines of the Hedge Tax (www.hedgehogparty.com); healthcare can be sold as catastropic federal insurance regs and tort reform.

  12. happyfeet says:

    John Cornyn really sucks at this. He has the leadership skills of a taco.

  13. Your thesis is precisely why when I said I would withhold support from the NRSC / NRCC I also stated I would write checks to conservative alternatives, and/or anyone who challenges the RINO-8.
    I also reiterated my support of Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11) because he voted “NO” and he’s my district’s rep.
    http://wyblog.us/blog/election/wanted-poster-rino-8
    That’s how this has to work – we need to support the guys who stand up for what is right.

  14. seekeronos says:

    “— So we’ve heard. You’ve been marching around with “The End Is Near” signs stapled to your *** and forehead for years. I just regret not knowing you during the economic collapse in ’82, or hyperinflation in the 70s, or Vietnam, or WW2, or The Great Depression, …—”
    Gotta love the Islamollama.
    First off, while I’ve been marginally aware that something rotten has been going on with the nation since the Clinton administration (actually, the rot goes as far back as the Woodrow Wilson administration that oversaw the wretched, tragic creation of the monster called the Federal Reserve Bank system, not to mention his own creeping scope of statism that opened the 20th century with our entry into the most horrific war known then to history).
    It has only been in the past two years that I’ve seen exactly how bad that rot is – a rot that threatens to fell our nation as surely as a mighty oak tree that had stood for centuries, only to be brought low from its pride by the craft of a fungus that had been consuming it for nearly half of its very life.
    Second, your analysis seems to be – it is – completely inaccurate.
    The oil shocks (coupled with the 1972 Nixon shock that came with taking us completely off the gold standard (Bretton Woods) were not a hyperinflation. There were price shocks to be sure, but noting like the Weimar Republic or Zimbabwe prolonged misery of a bankrupt government trying to debase its currency by running its printers at full steam.
    The 1979-1982 economic malaise was not a hyperinflation, but a *stagflation*… though inflationary in nature, again, the upward curve was restrained by downward pressures of masses of unemployed people – and employed people – hording their dollars.
    The Great Depression was actually deflationary throughout most of its 16 year (most of which was prolonged and exacerbated to cruel degrees by the policies of FDR and his statist, rubber-stamping Congress).
    And this from a world-class certified public account or whatever it is you do as a financial profession.

  15. Dan Riehl says:

    “So, do you support the Not One Red Cent viewpoint, or no?”
    Smitty, the NRCC and NRSC are irrelevant to my point of view. If one is giving money to candidates dedicated to what you want to see, obviously you aren’t giving it to the national organizations.
    But we do need leadership that seriously grasps what’s going on. If fund raising for conservative candidates were rising and support for the national orgs was decling, you can bet you’d start seeing a more conservative face on the GOP. Stacy says, follow the money. Yes, for a reporter. But politicians also follow the money, too.

  16. David R. Graham says:

    I have to side with Smitty and Stacy on this, understanding, I flatter myself thinking, why Dan sees it as he does.
    My reasoning is this: the system is broken but few are admitting that fact as the starting point of their thinking through what to do now.
    The looters in the WH and Congress would not be there if the system were working. That they are means it is not.
    Dan’s point of view on the general situation starts, I think, with the assumption that the system is still working but needs fixing.
    Granted, it is not a widely held, or at least admitted, view that the system is broken. Most appear to think or want to think that it is still working but needs regular maintenance and repair.
    Either way, that is delusion. The system is broken beyond the powers of regular, even vigorous maintenance to repair. Thinking should start from that assumption, which I submit is justified on the basis of facts — e.g., the individuals now with hands on the levers of government.
    The presence of those individuals means that the system has pancaked into a cliff at high speed. The cliff won.
    I concur with Dan that genuine conservative candidates are required to rebuild the system and work it.
    However, it has to be rebuilt from fresh materials. Old designs can be used and adapted, but the materials and fabrication have to be from scratch.
    The previous system just pancaked. It is totaled. It is not coming back to life.
    I think Stacy’s and Smitty’s approach to rebuilding is the one with the most probability of success.
    First, drying the money stream would reveal the genuine conservatives from the posers in the same way that firing ore in a crucible reveals the gold by burning away the dross.
    Second, although I am no authority on this, I infer from reports, perhaps mistakenly, that modern politicians are accustomed to passing “surpluses” in their accounts to fellow travelers, sometimes by choice, sometimes by coercion.
    If this is the case, then giving money to a politician in the hopes that they are genuinely conservative is, as all hopes, not a policy and always potentially forlorn.
    With an uninterrupted money stream, the politician has no incentive to be genuine and, by current custom, is likely to forward money you thought was for him or her to a like-minded fellow traveler.
    The system is broken, that is the point.
    Smitty mentions scorched earth. I propose a parallel metaphor: the crucible.
    A genuine conservative will run true to form whether they have money or not. Furthermore, if they are genuine, the money will arrive, just as it does to every activity that expands access to truth.
    Finally, there is an ancient insight that bears immemorially on political activity: the person qualified to hold responsibility for making decisions that affect the lives of their neighbors is the one not seeking it.
    Let the fact that the system is broken be admitted widely and emphatically — by drying up the money stream (scorched earth, fired crucible) — and observe developments.
    See who is left.
    There is a high probability that that person(s) is qualified to bear the public trust, to discharge the public responsibility. The odds are, having walked through the scorched earth, survived the crucible, they will be genuine gold.

  17. seekeronos says:

    “— Stacy says, follow the money. Yes, for a reporter. But politicians also follow the money, too. —”
    I’m a bit cynical. Politicians do follow the money – and if they see that the revenue stream is heading for ideologically conservative candidates, they (that is, the establishment GOP pols) might change their tune long enough to snooker enough funds from the usual sheep they fleece to “just get by” the primaries. And then back to the same-old, same-old.
    It is time to support only local, trusted conservatives, wherever they step up to the plate… and work to unseat shady RINOs and “fairweather” conservatives and their neocon comrades.