Much of the GOP is inflicted with a disease. It is a corruption. It is total depravity manifested in politics. It is what suppresses any progress toward a virtuous republic. They will blame that on liberals, but it is first and foremost the fault of conservatives who are hungry for power, money, and recognition, and who are willing to compromise their ethics in order to get those things. It is also the fault of conseratives who are dependent upon the very thing they claim to despise in politics.
Consider an example of a “good guy” pushing for positive change at the local level, and meeting that particular type of corrupt resistance for which establishment Republicans are growing famous. The story here is a picture of what can be done, and what lies, cowardice, and conscienceless powermongering we face in order to do it.
A Facebook friend alerted me to their local GOP primary for a state house seat. This is one of many this year across the country. It is a now classic story: an establishment republican with a record of advancing compromised and in some cases outright liberal policies is facing a “tea party” challenger. The challenger is a small business owner whose primary issue is spending and fiscal responsibility.
If a “tea party” still exists and has any influence, every primary like this across the nation should be a landslide. Fiscal issues were, allegedly, the unifying issue of the tea party movement. If they were serious, 2014 is another chance to clean house.
But if you’re an establishment incumbent in such a situation, what are you going to do? Here’s what incumbent Jim Keffer of Texas House District 60 did: in an effort to marginalize his opponent, Cullen Crisp, Keffer sent out a direct mail flyer attacking him for . . . gasp . . . sending his children to a private school.
Yes, folks, it’s that bad.
A Texas tea party news source reports:
Incumbent Representative Jim Keffer of Eastland has used the last month to resort to high dollar personal attacks on conservative Cullen Crisp. Disturbingly, the latest hit piece attacks Crisp for sending his children to a private school. This attack is just part of a tidal wave of negative mail unleashed on GOP primary voters in District 60 by Keffer.
Responding to the attacks, Cullen Crisp commented, “Representative Keffer should be very careful about going after my children. Any father would not tolerate such attacks. My children are not an issue in this campaign, nor do I plan to apologize for sending them to a school of our choosing. I believe public schools are a cornerstone of rural communities and I also believe parents have the right to decide what the best educational option is for their children.”
“If Jim Keffer or his consultant believe my family is up for discussion he can bring it up in person,” continued Crisp. “I hope Jim decides to show up at a series of community forums scheduled for next week before early voting begins. I know voters are eager to hear about the issues, like Jim’s record of supporting in-state tuition for illegal aliens, or his decision to vote himself a 12% pension increase this session.”
Why would an establishment guy like Keffer used such a stupid tactic? Ha. Don’t be naïve. It may be depraved, but for a conscienceless, power hungry politician, it’s also genius. It does two things: it changes the subject, and it hits conservative voters right in the chink of their own socialistic hypocrisy, their dependence government education.
First, it changes the subject. Just as the challenger says, establishment incumbents don’t want to have their records put in the light. They vote with liberals, and often partner with liberals to pass compromise agendas. They spend like little Washington DCs all across the country, and they don’t care. Then they sell themselves, smiling, to local constituencies as conservatives and “not-Obama.” When challenged on fiscal issues, the have to point away to other things.
Second, and most importantly, this particular personal attack is calculated. Painting the challenger as anti-public school is likely to resonate with voters—as witnessed by the challenger’s reaction. He went on the defensive: “I believe public schools are a cornerstone of rural communities.” He should not have had to say this. He should not have felt the need to say this. But he did. Defensiveness reveals fear. The fear here is that rural conservative voters will not tolerate a political representative who is anti-public school. This fear is probably correct, though the fact is depraved.
Public schools are socialism. They are the most explicit and by far most widespread form of socialism in our nation. They are one place where the general public depends on government production, where the government owns the means of production, and monopolizes the regulation of the production. And so-called free market, “taxed enough already,” fiscally responsible conservatives defend it, protect it, clamor for, and are hooked in dependence upon it.
For all the bad-mouthing conservatives do against welfare queens and food stamp recipients for their “dependency” upon government, they sure are blind to their own dependency upon an institution far worse, far more expensive, and far more destructive of liberty: public schooling.
Texas state district 60 is a rural district. It is as red and red state country gets. Yet like all standard red state conservatism, it succumbs to this particular depravity.
Partisans and slave owners of the Old South used to euphemize southern slavery as “our peculiar institution.” Now that slavery’s gone, I suggest the use of that euphemism be transferred where it rightly belongs today: the public school system. Just as any mantra of liberty and blessing in the antebellum republic was hypocritical and delusory because of their peculiar institution, so are any such conservative mantras today, because of our peculiar institution.
Slave owners and partisans could not see the evil of their institution in their day. We see it clearly, immediately, without question, looking back today. But we are as blind to the evils of our institution today as they were to theirs then. They defended their institution. Our conservatives today defend ours.
Consider me an abolitionist. They were ridiculed as radicals back then, until they prevailed. They are heroes of liberty today. It’s time to stop ridiculing modern day abolitionists, and time to start seeing why our cause is so important—indeed, perhaps the most crucial issue for liberty of our time.
Consider the establishment guys the taskmasters and the financially self-interested holders who profit from the system. They think that you’re so dependent upon the system you will fight to keep it at all costs. They think you will bolt in fear at the mere thought a potential politician is anti-public school. This belief is so real even the challengers themselves bolt in fear of being perceived so. “Swing low, sweet chariot!”
But at least these challenges tend to throw real issues into relief. Now we can see how establishment guys really think—and what they think of voters. And now we can see clearly the dependency of the voters. Now we can see the real problems.
Much more of this clarity, and the argument that establishment Republicans are no different than liberals will be clear even to Romney supporters. Sure, they may be a little different, but they are no more helpful. In fact, they are less so. They are keeping us all on the plantation.
But now we can see the depravity. It is not just in the seats of power. It is not just in the politicians. It is in the voters. Want to restore America? Redemption begins when the Spirit and the Word cleanse away the depravity.