10/28/08

Resolved

In the first debate between Stephen A. Douglas and Abraham Lincoln, Douglas quoted resolutions from the first platform of the then-newly formed Republican party. My favorite goes like this:
1. Resolved, That we believe this truth to be self-evident, that when parties become subversive of the ends for which they are established, or incapable of restoring the government to the true principles of the constitution, it is the right and duty of the people to dissolve the political bands by which they may have been connected therewith, and to organize new parties upon such principles and with such views as the circumstances and exigencies of the nation may demand.
With an overwhelming number of Republicans and conservatives endorsing Obama, perhaps it is time to revisit this resolution. If the Republican party hasn't become subversive of the ends for which it was established, what has it become?

The Christian Right have certainly been good soldiers, but what do they have to show for twenty-eight years of being abused by the neoconservative elements of the party? And fiscal conservatives were raving mad before the financial meltdown.

Republicans in the White House and Congress have helped destroy our economy through a combination of greed and neglect, demanded ever-expanding powers in order to fight a never-ending war and openly instigated both international and domestic conflicts instead of helping to resolve them: if these are not the conditions for a tectonic shift in American politics, what would it take to dissolve one of the parties?

Ross Douthat provides a more nuanced view of the challenges that face the Republican party.

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