This is going to be a long posting folks, so sit back, read and enjoy.
This presidential election year has brought into focus something that one would think was explained and practiced not too long ago.
That is conservatism.
But, we have found out that there is a three-legged stool and, I will add a forth.
There are social conservatives, fiscal conservatives, foreign policy and defense conservatives and here is the forth, judicial conservatives.
But, here is the thing. I am not a boxed-conservative. I am a conservative period.
So, what is it being a conservative?
It is a total world view. Not just on a certain set of issues. It is how I live my life. It is how I look at any multitude of issues. It is, quite simply, life experience.
But, while Mitt Romney ran for the Republican nomination for president he said he was a "full spectrum" conservative. And the Rev. Mike Huckabee is a social conservative. Sen. John "F--- You" McCain says he is a conservative, but does not know much about economics and doesn't do "social issues."
So, why were many people looking for the next Ronald Reagan, the Godfather of modern conservativsm?
Because the Great Man was a conservative period.
He easily explained it on many levels because he believed it and lived it. He was able to cobble together the so-called three legs of the modern Republican stool. In the Great Man's view, there were not just fiscal conservatives, or social conservatives, or foreign policy/defense conservatives and yes, judicial conservatives. For the Great Man, it was all inclusive.
Since Mr. Reagan passed from the political scene, there have been some hick-ups of inclusive conservatives. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich came close but was self-destructive and was not able to close the deal as speaker, so to speak. Many thought that President Bush could be the man. But, he chose to refer to himself as a "compassionate conservative" and that had a bad meaning. It meant that some conservatives were mean-spirited and he would be the white horse that would make conservatism a better sell. And how can we forget that President Bush 41 said that under his leadership, the United States would be a "kinder, gentler nation."
Now, we who are in the Republican party are faced with another leader who has a hard time with the conservative thing. That is Sen. John "F--- You" McCain.
We conservatives have seemingly broken apart. The social conservatives had their guy in the Rev. Mike and are ready to go all the way with him. And, they seem to be "flexible" on the rest of conservatism.
The fiscal conservatives had their guy in Mitt Romney, but he just could not close the deal and by the time he was able to freely go for the conservative message, it was the speech before CPAC and it was his swan song. And, they too seem to be flexible on the other aspects of conservatism.
The foreign/defense conservatives have their guy in Sen. John "F--- You" McCain. They feel he will beat back the Islamofacsists. They look at the War Against Islamofacsist Terror as the over riding issue to the point of throwing the social and fiscal conservatives under the bus.
The question is why?
The message of conservatism is that it is not a sectional, ghettoization of groups. But, without someone to clearly articulate and make all feel a part of, each so-called sub-group feels marginalized and thus looks for leaders of their sub-group.
When one has a conservative view of the world, there is an understanding of what that means. Thus, I do not worry about social conservatives because I am one. I am with them because they are right in the defense of the unborn, maintaining marriage between one man and one woman, that children are in the best growth environment with a mom and dad, and that the culture is totally debased.
I do not worry about the fiscal conservative because I am one. I believe that all forms of government should live within it means and that it should not interfere with the free market. Government works best from the bottom up, not the other way around. Taxes should never be used to pit groups against groups but to provide for basic services.
I do not worry about the foreign and defense conservatives because I am one. I believe that we should always follow our foreign policy on the interests of the United States, not international groups and or organizations. In other words, the United States may have to fight the War Against Islamofacsist Terror on our own, not depending on so-called allies and alliances. And we should support our allies and defeat out enemies. Our armed forces should always be the strongest and best equipted at all times. When there is a "peace dividend" it should never be squandered at the expense of our armed forces being the best in the world.
And, I do not worry about judicial conservatives. They are the ones that realize there is a tyranny of unelected judges that make law up as they go along, not respecting the disticntly American separation of powers. And of lawyers clogging our judicial system at all levels to the detriment of the citizenry as a whole. Judicial conservatives know all too well that we need judges that adjudicate, not legislate. We will only get the kind of judges that respect law and order if we all come to understand the importance of it.
In a few short paragraphs, I think I have tried to explain conservatism.
A conservative does not have to emphasize one over the other because the building blocks of conservatism is all inclusive.
What conservatism needs is some people to articulate what that is with the ease of a Ronald Reagan. We need someone who believes in the whole package, not just what suits their fancy. I know that leadership is out there and we have to encourage them to speak out and loudly.