What it is ain't exactly clear.
Haven't been posting much because the schedule the last few weeks at work has been "heck" to say the least. More on that later.
I've been trying to put this post together for a while now. I believe that conservatism, and/or the Republican party could be moving towards some sort of reformation after this election cycle. I saw last night there was an article about reformation at National Review's website, but the article is more of a critique of a E.J. Dionne piece for the Times or some such.
But if you're a bit more than a casual observer of conservative politics, then I don't think you can miss what's been going on since we began this election cycle.
We've seen that our party has a significant portion, I'm trending back to my original position of 25-30%, made up of bumper-sticker mentality voters -- folks that vote Republican because that's what they do and anyone with the simplistic catchy slogan or the most promotion from conservative media will get their vote.
We've seen our media itself outed for their own shameless bias. It is sad when FOX News has to rely on a comedian and a former MTV VJ to point out their in-house bias. Front line Trump cheerleader Eric Bolling teased yet another of his Trump infomercials as fill-in host for O'Reilly Friday night, but quickly name checked the #NeverTrump crowd when he said he tried to get candidates Cruz and Kasich on as well and settled for their surrogates to rebut whatever nonsense (my word) Trump uttered in his interview.
A while back, Bernie Goldberg pointed out how some FOX News hosts were beyond deferential to Trump in their reporting, but it turns out that other outlets, like Breitbart and Drudge have been just as guilty of pro-Trump bias. And after a story broke about a former Cruz campaign member suggesting a boycott of those organizations and a number of FOX personalities, there's been some noticeable changes in these agencies.
There have been those who have quit Breitbart altogether such as Ben Shapiro, who was mentored in the new media by Andrew Breitbart himself. Also a perusal of the various Bigs shows a distinct lack of all pro-Trump, all the time stories. I myself wondered whether, after eight years of John Nolte suggesting that Jon Stewart should wear a clown nose on air and called him part of Obama's palace guard for always defending the President, Stewart would point out Nolte's own fawning submissive fealty to Trump. But I haven't seen anything like that. Pity. Opportunity missed I think.
Famed broadcaster and supposed voice of conservatism Rush Limbaugh has been shown to be the cowardly money grubber he really is. The former sportscaster turned political opiner is courageous when liberals attack him because he knows he will have every Republican and conservative behind him 100%, but stand up to the 25-30% of Trump supporters when they're going to destroy the party? Limbaugh's in full cower, defiantly defending his position not to have a position supposedly in order to protect the eventual nominee. What horsesh*t! And now, even his own radio listeners are calling him on this.
When the #NeverTrump movement began, and I'm not sure it really is a movement per se, I'm just not sure how to quantify it, most of the mainstream conservative press dismissed it as a flash in the pan. But those who believe deeply in conservative principles and have a genuine belief in saving this country and this political party haven't been dissuaded one bit. And in fact, their (our) ranks have grown. And the notion of pushing into inconsequence those who have sold out our ideology in the name of fame and instant gratification -- Palin, Christie, Coulter, various FOX anchors and politicians, isn't being dismissed as crazy talk now. And those being outed as traitors to conservatism are taking note.
Ann Coulter was on record recently pointing out that she now notices that Trump is a problematic candidate. My guess is that unless her next book is a mea culpa on how she sold out conservatism and bought into the Trump mirage (not the casino, but his fake candidacy), it won't sell at all.
Former RNC chair Michael Steele lost his job after the disastrous 2012 election where the candidates were played like fools by the media, liberal and conservative both. Steele, like former Chairman of the Joint Chief Colin Powell, turned his back on the Republican party that gave him power and position and became a mouthpiece for liberal outlets like MSNBC where he finds racism in every utterance of anyone with an R as their political affiliation. Current chair Reince Preibus is headed the same way. His mealy-mouthed handling of the Trump fiasco may doom Republicans to yet another defeat in a gimme election, and the consequences for the country are dire indeed.
Trump was in town for a meeting with Preibus last week, and I guarantee you, Reince didn't have the spine to back Trump down one bit. Trump doesn't care if he wins or loses this election, that's what gives him the power to say and do whatever he wants. A report from his former communications director that came out last week showed that he never intended to win this election. He goal was only to come in second. That way he could say that he could have been President if he actually wanted the job, but he didn't spend any money, and the system was rigged against him, yada, yada . . .
If Trump becomes the eventual nominee, Republicans will definitely lose this election to whomever the Dems put out there. Should Cruz emerge from a contested convention, win or lose the eventual election, there will be consequences within the party. The old guard will be thrown out. Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich, and all the old guys who continue to opine on television, promoting the status quo and reaching to defend Trump at any cost to common sense and reason, will and should be gone like Dick Morris before them. I believe there will and should be some house cleaning at FOX and various new media outlets to either shame into confession or simply remove those who have sold out their principles in the name of ratings and the dollars/fame that accompanies them.
Years ago, the Post Office took an arrogant and nearly fatal position of declaring they were the sole source for mail delivery in this country. "Go ahead, look elsewhere, who are you going to get to deliver your mail?" they declared, arms folded defiantly across their chests. Well, the country found alternative information delivery systems and the PO almost died. Conservative media is no different. New outlets for legitimate conservative thought and news can spring up overnight and with social media to promote it, current news sources can be pushed aside quickly.
The political arena is no different. People like to cite the Buckley Rule after noted conservative thinker and author William F. Buckley -- that being conservatives should pick the most electable conservative candidate available for every election. Well, I obviously didn't know Buckley personally, but I doubt he meant picking someone so diametrically opposed to conservative principles that said candidate would at the least turn their back on the party -- I'm looking at you Scott Brown (no surprise he's a Trump mouthpiece) -- and at worst destroy the party for generations to come.
#NeverTrump, strident conservative purists, libertarians . . . all are united against the direction the weak-spined party leaders are taking the Republican party and brand. There's a lot at stake in this election. And regardless of the final outcome, I don't think the Republican party will emerge the same as it went in.
And perhaps it shouldn't.