Looking for Real Conservatives
by Lawton Teich
The record speaks for itself: neither George W. Bush nor most congressional Republicans are genuinely conservative. But neither are liberal Democrats. Many American voters — both liberal and conservative — want the Republicans who have been in control out of office. But simply replacing neo-conservative Republicans with liberal Democrats will not clean up the mess in Washington since liberal Democrats are part of the problem. Admittedly, many congressional Democrats may now oppose some of Bush's dangerous proposals for amassing presidential power, but how would these same congressmen vote if Hillary Clinton or another like-minded Democrat were to be elected president two years from now?
In the meantime, gridlock in a divided government could impede the accumulation of more power in the executive branch. But how much of that gridlock would be genuine — and how much would be political theater — when both major parties serve the same power elites? As Lou Dobbs explained in his CNN.com commentary posted on October 18: "I don't know about you, but I can't take seriously anyone who takes either the Republican Party or Democratic Party seriously — in part because neither party takes you and me seriously; in part because both are bought and paid for by corporate America and special interests.... Political, business and academic elites are waging an outright war on working men and women and their families, and there is no chance the American middle class will survive this assault if the dominant forces unleashed over the past five years continue unchecked."
Dobbs added that "those elites treasure your silence, as it enables them to claim America's future for their own." But if the problem is bipartisan, who is there to vote for who has a realistic chance of winning, outside of a rare exception such as Ron Paul? The only way to solve that problem is to wake the town and tell the people and get them involved, election year and nonelection year alike. Once the political climate is changed, many Republicans and Democrats will adjust their rhetoric and actions in order to keep themselves electable, and if they don't they will be replaced on election day by other candidates who do offer their fellow citizens a choice and who may or may not be Republicans or Democrats!