Convention or Bust

The GOP is going to ride this into the dirt and they’re going to take conservativism with them


It’s no great secret that the GOP leadership is struggling. They couldn’t get their chosen candidate(s) off the starting block, the second place nominee was an odious reactionary, and the presumed victor is a mercurial narcissist fuelled by a white nationalism that crops up every six decades or so. So where do the leftovers go?

Well, in this piece from the Atlantic there’s a lot of hopeful consideration of third parties.

I get why third parties are attractive: they stand for something! Unlike the major parties, who are all mishmashed up. But there’s the issue: if you’re really REALLY driven by issues such that you can parse the difference between the American Party and the Libertarian Party and the Constitution Party and the other parties, you’re not going to tolerate the OBVIOUS flaws of Party A; you’re going to choose Party B! And so on until there are a dozen minor conservative parties and none of them want anything to do with the other.

Robespierre was guillotined by his own revolution, and so it ever will be: revolutions eat their own, fragment, and fall apart. If these minor parties are already made up of people selecting party affiliation based on their minor differences as if they were major, they’re never going to see eye-to-eye.

The most confident way America could actually get a real, new major party – and the reasonable kind of conservativism that, for example, likes to legislate and appreciates that government has a function – is from a convention. It’d have to be all the minor conservative parties, and they’d have to agree to a common platform, and they could let the GOP keep the angry and neglected white lower classes… only until those whites realize they’d be better off with allies that actually legislate and fight for them, rather than just tagging along with a loudmouth asshole because he’s a voice for their anger.

The GOP is looking at a decades-long decline, a la the Federalist Party, unless something drastic changes. America is going to be a two-party country for a while yet, and if the GOP is irrelevant and at least one of destructive and/or ineffective when they are relevant, this country is going to suffer greatly. The Democrats need worthy competition, and if they don’t get it it’s going to be Hillarys all the way down.

Author: S Peter Cordner

I’m an upper-middle class white male with an education and a raft of luck and an inability to keep too many thoughts to myself. I read RSS feeds like they keep me alive and need intellectual stimulation like mice need cheese. Politically I'm progressive conservative; inside America this is probably a confusing phrase, but most of Europe gets it. I'm also a practicing student of zen and consider myself a pantheist though it pretty much never comes up in discussion. :)

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