Following up on some of my thoughts in the last post, I also want to talk a little about the Republican party to which I've been so implacably opposed recently. I think it's easy to gain the impression from this blog that I'm a partisan Democrat to the point of wanting to see the Republicans permanently swept out of power. That's actually not true.
I'm of the opinion that the Republican party, in its current state, has lost its way. Its moral compass is shattered, and it has confused its priorities; it is adrift in a sea of corruption and cynicism. Figures like Delay, Pat Robertson, Frist, Cheney, and the ghost of Ronald Reagan have seduced them with the power of empty promises and false patriotism. The Republican grassroots are confused, and the American people at large aren't even sure anymore of exactly what "Republicanism" (or "conservatism," for that matter) even means.
And who can blame them (the grassroots and the citizenry, that is)? Are the Republicans for small government or big government? Libertarianism or legislating morality? Isolationism or interventionism? Suddenly Republicans are advocating all of these at the same time, or even worse, advocating one but legislating the other.
The Republican party is, in my opinion, suffering from an extreme case of power intoxication. They have no agenda to speak of other than granting ever-increasing tax cuts to their most generous patrons. They've resorted to corruption to maintain their hegemony, and they're so deep in it that its upkeep has usurped all their actual goals. They sold themselves off to an "ends justify the means" ideology; now the means have become the ends.
They should've seen it coming. History has shown that such an ideology always yields such results. It happened to Soviet Russia, to Cuba, and Chile. It happened to Rome and the Greek "Athenian League." And for a long time in the Middle Ages, it even happened to the Catholic Church.
I believe in a multi-party system. I believe the best government is the one where both parties share power. In fact, if I had my way, then the two parties normally would split the goverment, with for instance the Dems controlling the House and Presidency, and the Republicans the Senate and the Court. In such a case, both parties have to compromise, and it's generally only the best parts of their agendas that manage to become law.
Two parties also benefit each other: when one party gains control of the government, it's only a matter of time until they lose their way and succumb to corruption. Eventually the public outcry reaches a critical mass, and that party is knocked out of power, where it does some soul searching, re-evaluates and reconnects with its priorities, cleans house, and is rejuvenated. Usually, it becomes a better party.
I believe that this is what needs to happen to the Republican party. It needs to be soundly defeated for its own good, so that it can spend some time as the minority party, and soul-search, reconnect and rejuvenate. It will return to power eventually as a better party than it is today, as a worthy party.
Until that day, however, I will remain a partisan Democrat.