I have made the public statement that I daily hope and pray that President-Elect Donald Trump will continue to prove me wrong. To this point, the overarching consensus from the TMCV (The Maine Conservative Voice) is that the future President has done the just that. I use the word “overarching” so the reader can assume the caveats implied.
For example, General Mattis is a fantastic pick for defense. He brings back the sense of a disciplined, tempered, steely, ferocity in our military that Americans are desperately needing to see in the forces that protect this Nation in the face of the unspeakable horrors that surround us. In contrast, if not just slightly, I think the jury is out on Betsy DeVos, for education. Much depends, sadly, on whether she was lying when she said she opposed common core or lying when she supported it.
This brings me to my final thought for today. A critique of not only of the President-Elect, but of Conservatives also. Let’s just call it, if I may fall back on some lingo from my birth state of Arizona, a burr or a bullhead in my saddle.
Under the file of “Bad for Thee,But not for Me”, the Carrier deal is crony capitalism plain and simple. You can’t slap Republican on something and somehow think it makes it right. That’s called hypocrisy….plain and simple. We railed against liberals for this. But now we celebrate it because it’s “our side” screwing with Free Market? It was wrong for Solyndra, it was wrong for GM, and it’s wrong for Carrier.
Again the pendulum swings and we are not trying to stop it. This is the burr in my saddle. We have always as Conservatives preached against the “end justifies the means” approach of liberals, yet much to my chagrin (I speak for myself), it seems many Conservatives had no problem employing said approach this election cycle.
The response I consistently hear as of late is “Hey, we won!” While I feel increasingly in the minority among those who profess to be my conservative allies, I still contend that, for me, social and fiscal conservatism is not a campaign tactic, but rather, a reflection of my core convictions. Perhaps I am a relic of the past that deserves to be kicked to the curb as some assert, but a quick perusal of history will confirm that the “end justifies the means” ascent to power only assures a destructive exposition in the end, of this I am certain.
I understand give and take. I understand compromise is essential to effective statesmanship. I probably break with many fellow conservatives when I say I think Mitt Romney would make an excellent Secretary of State. His calm, measured demeanor is sorely needed on the world stage. Yes, I am fully aware that he certainly lacks in his conservatism.
I differ with many of my learned and far more talented contemporaries, such as Matt Gagnon, when I say Sarah Palin would be a great pick for the VA. I think we have forgotten what propelled her to the Governorship. Remember, her dogged investigation of the corruption in the oil companies in Alaska?
This I say simply to point out that I understand the give and take among the conservative ranks. What I cannot fathom however is how some so easily abandon their professed convictions for “Hey,we won!” Yes, I am aware one former Governor of Alaska certainly was the first to seemingly toss conviction to the wind for “the win”.
So there is contention within the conservative ranks that must be resolved. Can a candidate be a person of conviction and be successful? Or must the candidate simply profess conviction as tactics to be removed and reinstated as political atmospheres dictate? Is there really a right or wrong? Or does it have to be the present cycle of “bad for thee but not for me”? I foresee some soul-searching in my horizon. Is soul-searching allowed in politics?