A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet
I'm tired -- tired of being used.
It's bad enough being used, but being used in a losing cause is even worse.
We conservatives have been the red-headed stepchild of the Republican Party for as long as I can remember. They run us out at every election to do the grunt work -- then shunt us off to the rear as soon as the election is over. If they lose the election we are blamed for it. If they win, we get none of the credit.
They USE US -- and I am fed up with it.
Now, every time anyone brings up the idea of a separate political party, a conservative political party, a "third" party all heck breaks lose and I/we are barraged with every excuse in the world as to why a "third" party won't work.
Let's be clear here. I'm not talking about a "centrist" third party. We already have that. It's called the Republican Party. What I'm interested in is a "CONSERVATIVE" party -- a political party of the right, conservative to the core, and unapologetic as hell about it, too.
It is true that a third political party in American politics will not work -- so long as it remains THE third party.
"While America is traditionally a two-party system, third parties have played extremely important roles in America. These minor parties act as watchdogs, increase awareness about issues, and sometimes even split the vote changing the outcome of an election." SOURCE: http://americanhistory.about.com/od/politicalparties/The_History_of_Political_Parties.htm
After taking part -- in and watching the GOP implode upon itself -- in the last two Presidential elections, seems to me we conservatives have the right to question the leadership of the GOP, which always seems to be drawn (mostly) from the blue bloods and country club set.
It's just an observation on my part, but I have come to believe that the leadership of the GOP doesn't really know how to handle themselves in a fight. They don't go for the jugular of the Democratic Party when the fight is on. They rarely go for the throat of the opposition in the Congress, either.
Look. The Romney Campaign was badly managed. Heck, I'm convinced a political science class from Green Swamp University could have done a better job.
As a rule, I don't waste my time with losers. BUT, I have been a registered Republican since my 21st birthday -- well over 50 years ago. If you have to ask why, then you have obviously not read my scribbling before this one.
The GOP has been the "gentleman's" party for as long as I can remember. Thinking myself a gentleman, it seemed the logical choice for me. There was a problem, however. See, I am a southern gentleman. A southern gentleman is defined as "a southern male (of breeding) with a bible in one hand and a cannon ball in the other." James Dickey, a former Poet Laureate of my home state of South Carolina is the author of that definition. The meaning is clear. You can be reasonable in a disagreement with us and we can pray together about it, or be unreasonable, and we can -- and will -- engage in a smash-mouth, hair-pulling, eyeball gouging, knock-down-drag-out brawl.
And that is my problem with the GOP. They just do not seem willing to go to the wall, to push the limit, to get down in the gutter, when necessary, to take the fight to the opposition, set THEM back on their heels, knock THEM off balance, and take advantage of every opportunity the opposition makes available to the GOP.
Look at all the missed opportunities to go after the Obama campaign's throat. Benghazigate was just hanging there, sparking in the sunshine, and the GOP did not go for it.
I learned something as a skinny little kid who wore glasses. NEVER FIGHT FAIR! Use anything and everything to your advantage -- from your fists to a two by four. As the perpetual underdog -- my survival was at stake -- and I KNEW IT.
The GOP does not seem to have that sort of survival spirit -- and without it, well, they've lost the fight before the first blow is struck.
For going on six decades now I have watched the GOP climb into the ring with the democrats and bob and weave, duck and cover, until a TKO -- or an outright knockout -- is called in favor of the democrats.
Maybe the time has finally come for me to move on. The question, of course is, move on to where? I'll certainly never be a democrat. I'm a conservative born (I believe) into this world hardwired as such.
So, for lack of a viable third political party, I, too, will become an "Independent." (Here in North Carolina, we have no Independents. Here you are either a Democrat, a Republican, or "Unaffiliated.")
Conservatives need a home of their own ... desperately.
J. D. Longstreet