Small Government and Family Values

Ok, there are plenty of explanations for the recent blue-washing of the country. Let’s go through them:

I get to wave my blogging wand over to pronounce all explanations reasonable.

And here’s the executive summary: GOP political and media institutions are in mortal danger of  irrelevancy to the contemporary and future USA.

As Ta-Nehisi Coates memorably rocked it, “This is not a ‘branding problem.’ This is a ‘problem problem.’

So how do you solve a problem like America?

Good thing Thinker for Hire’s on the job with a few suggestions.

See, GOP, no matter how many people of color you put in your ads or into your local and state offices, your policies will still have to answer to this increasingly diverse electorate.

For example: You can say that you support women’s rights. But when you refuse to sign an equal pay act, when you pervert civil rights language to deprive women of comprehensive reproductive health care, and when you tell a nation of parents that rape is god’s will, voters will not believe that you actually give a damn about women.

So here’s how you can re-think your two main platforms to meet the needs of our country. And I’m being entirely sincere here, with what I hope are some constructive ideas.

Small Government

This is a biggie. The foundation of all your campaigning, the talking point ready at hand during all debating and interviewing. But here’s the thing: it’s hypocritical.

You like small government. I get it: you’re suspicious of federal power. Except.

You also like to increase defense spending despite the fact that national security reality has changed. Ground wars, with their massive investments in people and equipment, are no longer appropriate for the asymmetrical conflicts with non-state actors that threaten us most.

You also want the government to tell me when I can and can’t have a baby.

You also want the government to tell my friends when they can and can’t marry, and when their children will or won’t be protected by the same laws that kids of straight parents get.

You also want your Medicare and Social Security, and some unemployment insurance, that you’ve paid into through your working life, to take the edge off that job loss.

You also want the government to subsidize farmers who often don’t really need all that federal insurance money.

Once you add all that stuff in, your government isn’t small at all. It’s wasting money, it’s in our bedrooms, it’s interfering with our personal decisions. Which leads me to

Family Values

I think we can all agree that we all love our families. But we seem to disagree about what that means.

What does it mean to you, GOP leader, to fully support families?

You seem to believe that some families deserve our support while others do not.

That some families get comprehensive health care while others do not.

That some children get adequate food while others do not.

That someone else’s daughter, brutally assaulted and raped, perhaps by someone in her family, is required to carry that baby to term. Because pregnancy is so easy, compared to everything else she’s been through.

That government should do nothing about the fact that your sons have more financial and personal opportunity than your daughters.

That your children get better or worse education than other kids, based on where you live and based on the fact that you trust politicians more than educators to decide how best to run a classroom.

That children of some parents don’t get to go to college, become legal citizens, have the full protection of the law, or even see their parents for years, while others get all these things.

I suspect that voters who put women and Democrats in charge of our presidency and Senate have thought through what different parties offer them and their families.

That when hard-line rightward spokespeople talk about economic and social issues as separate, voters believe otherwise. That full support of all families spreads economic opportunity without costing anyone anything (as we’ll start to see in a few years after Obamacare is more fully implemented, for example.)

So, GOP colleagues, if you’re bringing small government and family values to 2014 and 2016, I urge you to consider what these policies mean to the voters you want to court. Don’t insult our intelligence by dressing up this year’s talking points in a Spanish accent or a dress.

If you think through these issues seriously and respectfully, we may see a genuine rebirth of your party. Though this kind of reckoning may be bad for the Democratic party, our country would only benefit.

UPDATED TNC keeps bringing it.

What you start to get is the impression that you are looking at a party which represents the interest of those trying to keep you out. This impression is not wrong. Any serious conversation about Republican candidates needing to be more “diverse” needs to confront the hard reality of the Republican base.  

Sheriff Arpaio does not owe his prominence to a military coup. He owes it to actual Republicans, virtually none of whom have any interest in seeing the party diversify on a policy level.

…I don’t think this is something you fix by 2016.

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5 thoughts on “Small Government and Family Values

  1. Inder says:

    A to the Men. Gee, all I can say is thank the freaking gods that rape is “unpopular with voters.” Ah, I enjoyed this slap-down. So. Much. (Sorry I’m doing so badly on commenting. Somehow my blog roll habits just didn’t seem to survive the birth of my second child. I guess something had to go, and it sure wasn’t going to be Facebook? I suck.)

    • Elizabeth says:

      Hah. See! Women aren’t as capable of blog commenting as men!

      Anyway, thanks. As you know, there are Republicans in my life that I love deeply. I’m trying not to be disrespectful in this one. Still, I’m glad you enjoyed it!

  2. Melissa says:

    Rape unpopular with voters. Dying.

  3. Melissa says:

    Also, the points you make about small government spoke to my heart.

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