Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Who Gets (Or Wants) To Pitch A Big Tent?

When far too many important issues need to be debated in the country, the choice these days seems to be over whether the Republican Party should be allowed (by the Democrats and Liberal media) to determine who is a Republican. 

For those of you not already saying, "Huh?" let me elaborate. It appears that some part the Republican Party, fresh off of some victories in the recent elections, has arrived at the position that these victories have something to do with adhering to core Republican principles. It also appears that that some part of the Republican Party has decided that if this is the case, it would do well to identify and codify those principles in order to continue this success. 

As pointed out in a Wall Street Journal piece by Peter Wallsten from November 24th, ten members of the Republican National Committee have come up with ten principles on which they would to be used as a litmus test to decide who gets funding from the National Republican Party. (I won't go into the details of the resolution language or the principles, but I urge those interested to read the linked article.)  

My question here however is why an opposition party (and their co-conspirators in the media) feel that they should have a part in the internal debate in the Republican Party? Are opposing coaches in a football game consulted before play calling? Do firms competing for a contract consult each other before submitting bids? Do opposing generals ask each other for advice on strategy before conducting a battle? 

Quite frankly, the questions seem too ridiculous to even be asked. Of course in none of these situations do opposing positions or ideologies consult each other or allow such opposition to dictate strategy. In fact, in the isolated cases when an opponent has been allowed to to do so, even indirectly, those dictating the strategy usually win the battle. OK, well that at least tells us why the Democrats are pursuing their strategy. 

(You know, Joseph Heller of "Catch-22" fame, once said: "The enemy is anybody who's going to get you killed, no matter which side he's on.") 

Let's ask instead then, why Republicans would be expected to follow the dictates of Democrat's strategy as that for their party. In the case of these ten members of the Republican National Committee, it appears that the answer is that they will not. It also appears that these ten individuals do not therefore agree with the concept of a "Big Tent" for the Republican Party. They appear to have come to the conclusion that political parties are formed around a limited number of core principles (hence the term core), which has been the case with each new political party in this country as it's formed. 

So whether I am a Republican or not (not), or I agree with each of these core principles as stated; I believe that each political party should have a group of stated core principles which serve to qualify inclusion in that party. I also agree with the concept that such core principles are a fair litmus test to determine party support. 

As for the concept of the "Big Tent" that Democrats and the media believe that the Republicans need for their future, let me repeat a statement that I have previously made on the subject: "Circuses have big tents, but we don't vote for the clowns."

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