The short answer: the 2012 election forms a Rubicon that, now having been crossed, this country will never cross back. Forget all the pundit talk (like Ed Rollins this morning on Fox) that elections go through cycles and this one was just another example. Forget the mid-terms of 2010. Forget the Tea party; it's finished forever.
The basic, fundamental nature and character of the American electorate has changed, and will not be changed back. Ever. The Republican Party can foresee nothing but diminishment henceforth. There are no rising superstars who can save it. Jindal? Nope. Rubio? Nope. Rand Paul? Nope. Paul Ryan? He's done already. And there is absolutely no Republican whom Romney ran against in the primaries who has a ghost of a chance in the future.
What every Republican from Speaker John Boehner down doesn't get is that this election ("close" as it's being called, but it was not close) really shows that the Republican Party does not matter any more. For the next four years, no one will care what Boehner has to say about any issue.
|The election's winner|
There is a story of a sixth-grade race for class president. Candidate Jimmy made the first speech. He promised to be loyal to the class and stand up for them if they thought the teachers were unfair. He proposed ways all the kids could work together to help each other with homework. He said, "I will be your friend."
Next, candidate Susie stood up and clinched 90 percent of the vote with one simple sentence: "If I am elected, I will host an ice cream party for everyone after school."
Forget the split of the votes cast Nov. 6: What the data really show is that a super-majority of the American people either do not care (non-voters) or want the government's free or subsidized goodies to continue (like these). Overall voter turnout was significantly less this year than in 2008, with tens of millions of eligible voters not voting, meaning that Romney's loss (Obama's vote plus non-voters) was absolutely crushing.
There is no way the Republican Party can reinvent itself to overcome this deficit. Facts are facts: The Republicans presently can count on exactly one voting bloc:
- White men
On the other hand, the Democrats simply own the following voting blocs:
- Married, employed women broke for Romney, but single women of all ages broke for Obama, especially unmarried women with children.
- More women voted for Obama than men voted for Romney.
- The fastest-growing women's demographic is unmarried women and right behind them, unmarried women with children. This is a permanent demographic shift. Today, 40 percent of all childbirths are to unmarried women. At least half of single mothers live in poverty and they will never vote for Scrooge over Santa Claus.
- So: Years to come will see ever-fewer women's votes being cast for Republicans and because women voters outnumber male voters by several percentage points, the gap is larger than it seems.
- Other minorities generally
The Republican Party cannot stay true to its historical principles and win again. For most of the last eight decades, the American Left has taken over, successively, American political theory, opinion leaders, university academia, the media, mainline churches, public education and finally the entire Democrat party. They Left has suffered only rare and temporary setbacks in their Great March. Now it is ensconced and it is permanent. Generations younger than the retiring Boomers literally do not have the historical knowledge or intellectual tools to grasp the concept of inherently limited government and restricted, delegated powers.
No matter who is the Democrat nominee in 2016, no matter the state of the economy, no Republican will win the White House without presenting himself as a Democrat-lite. But why will people vote for a Democrat-lite when they can vote for Democrat-heavy?
I am tempted to say that only a severe national-security crisis will turn the electorate toward a Republican candidate again. But I yield not to that temptation.
Goodbye, party of Lincoln. It was fun while it lasted. Last one out turn out the lights.
Before Democrat voters rejoice, they should soberly consider what this means:
- A permanent decline in your standard of living and especially that of your children,
- A permanently-growing federal government, consuming growing proportions of America's wealth,
- And expanding government control or outright ownership of the country's financial activity,
- Per-capita shrinkage of economic activity,
- An expansive federal bureaucracy, with exponentially exploding regulatory authority over the way you live your daily lives in ways you cannot even imagine yet,
- And therefore greater and greater restrictions on your freedoms to say what you want, do what you want, possess what you want, except you will have federally-funded sex lives without restriction, because Democrats think that you will acquiesce to being stripped of all your freedoms without protest as long as they pay for your sex. And they are right. You are already gladly exchanging your liberty for censure-less rolls in the hay.
- Crony capitalism? You ain't seen nothing yet. Increasingly, government contracts and stimulus money (by whatever name) will be funneled to the ideologically pure. You, the ordinary Democrat voter, will be frozen out of this largess. You are of neither use nor concern to the Party except on election day. You are a mere prole. Get used to it.
- Diminishment of your health and shorter life spans because Obamacare is absolutely designed for the benefit of government and its licensed financial allies, not you,
- Expanding federal debt almost without end, meaning that even as your own personal income falls, you will pay an ever-higher proportion of it in taxes of one kind or another (but don't worry, you will blindly drink the Kool-Aid that only "the rich" are paying more taxes),
- "Almost without end," because the end will come to the gravy train, and it will be truly apocalyptic when it does. "Chaos" does not even begin to describe it; in fact, chaos will be the best outcome you can expect. Oh, when this happens (when, not if) you will lose absolutely everything you own. Ev. Ry. Thing. Because there is no one to bail America out.
Update: Roger Kimball:
I fear that what an English friend just wrote me is true:
You just don’t care about being a Great Power any longer. That’s what this is about. The world should start sucking up to China instead now, as Americans have shown they’ve no appetite for world leadership any longer. You’ve had a century in the sun, and now you’ve decided to become Sweden instead of shouldering the burden. The 47% have won and you’re going to slip into social democracy and in 4 years time no-one — Christie, Rubio, Ryan — will be able to do anything about it.RIP American Exceptionalism
Even before the unmitigated political disaster of November 6, 2012, a date that will live in infamy, the prospects of salvaging the United States were not particularly hopeful. Now, however, we are permanently and irretrievably screwed.