Thinking about the future of the defeated Republican Party makes the SWNIDish head hurt. But we're trying to do it as a public service.
First, we affirm all that is affirmed by the founder of Crunchy Conservatism, Rod Dreher. His commentary on NPR today says just about all that SWNID would say, with two exceptions.
Exception One: The GOP must also stop doing things that antagonize the growing number of voters who aren't persons of pallor. Hammering on immigration, legal or otherwise, is wrong on many counts, including informed self interest and basic human morality, in our view. But it's also killing the Rs at the ballot box. The same may be said for the kind of subtle racism that still infects Republican rhetoric forty years after Nixon invented the Southern Strategy. No more talk about "real Americans," OK?
Exception Two: Dubya has been a massive drag on the party politically for the last three years. But it's time, or it will be eventually, to recognize him not as an inept president but as a president who presided with an impressive record of successes in extremely difficult times.
We're thinking about this Future of Republicanism thing. We ruminate on expressions like "opportunity," "responsibility," "self-determination," "economic enfranchisement," "environmental realism," "efficiency," "human dignity," "global democracy," and "international vigilance" as objects of hope versus fear. Governor Jindal will need a thoughtful platform and a clear way to speak about it when he runs against President Obama in 2012.