A Conversation With a Twenty-Something American (Part 1)

Here is one definition of “total war”:

Total war is a war in which a belligerent engages in the complete mobilization of all available resources and population. The word total does not refer to the amount of destruction but solely to the extent of mobilization.

In the past week or so there have been a number of news reports that are clearly the result of a coordinated effort to sell the next phase of ridiculousness to the American public. This time what’s being sold is transgenderism.

How can things have gotten so crazy? There are several parts to the answer — the most important part in my view is the failure of Republicans and conservatives to effectively engage in the information war. When nuts, fruits, and flakes are allowed to control the flow of information via the media, big education, and pop culture, what do you expect? Common sense? Honestly? Sanity? Virtue? Of course not.

One facet of the information war includes the need for a lot more conservatives to join the fight to take over the Republican Party. Conservatives will never reach the necessary levels of mobilization as long as RINOs and mal-motivated individuals are allowed to dominate the GOP.

That’s so easy to say. Talking people into that necessary work is not easy.

A while back I engaged in an email discussion with a smart and successful 29-year-old young lady on this very topic. The reality on the ground is the same now as it was back when this first posted at my personal website.

It began with her sending me this note:

I read your article from today. However, as a member of the jaded populace I just wanted to weigh in with the kind of (expletive deleted) attitude you may be facing so that maybe you can address it.

What follows are excerpts from the exchange and my comments, with her words indented. Here was my initial response:

No one should be confused about my own (expletive deleted) attitude. Politics usually isn’t fun — but like the sewage treatment or waste disposal business, it’s one of those inescapable parts of life. And as the old adage goes, democracy is a lousy form of government except when compared to all the others.

Her note continued:

You make the great points about the importance of being involved. If you haven’t done the things mentioned here then you’re not really participating. If you haven’t heard from your party then they’re remiss so hold them accountable. All great points. However, to those who are completely incensed at what’s going on, a ‘grass roots’ effort sounds a little too ‘in the weeds’ for those of us non-politicos. I can’t stand the idea of starting in the mail room at this point. It seems far too late for that, especially considering the ‘talent’ we have at the front.

Believe me I know what she’s saying. I argue that without better folks at the top, we’re never going to be able to attract quality people in the numbers necessary to mount a successful defense against the radical left.

Solid progress can be made quickly, but for it to be sustained it will require a political troop surge.

There are a lot of different kinds of talents needed — from those who can run for office — to those who can lead the party — to those who can provide the necessary support at all levels. The fact is there are plenty of people willing to spend time in the mail room because that’s all the time or energy they have left to give at the end of their full, busy, and exhausting day.

While not everyone needs to start in the mail room, effective leaders do need to be aware of the sheer volume of work required to succeed in impacting the public. Since anyone paying attention knows that Republicans are only going to be able to extract so much cooperation from the mainstream media — efforts to bypass the press often requires putting together mailings or literature “drops” (info left on doorknobs) — both of which require a lot of volunteers.

That answer might seem a bit too much ‘in the weeds.’ The fact is, though, the execution of any large endeavor is going to require some weed work. Shortcuts can be purchased in the near term if money is available. Wealthy candidates run for office all the time and hire consultants and pay mail houses to do the work for them. Unfortunately, most local GOP organizations aren’t going to start out with these big budgets.

She continued:

The idea of approaching a good ole boy monolith is about the last thing that I, and I would guess many people, want to take on. I think that’s why the TEA Parties really took hold. People who had previously had little political involvement felt as if they could affect a change without having to go through all the same old traditional channels.

For too long people, me included, have felt like their passionate sentiment has been watered down to 2% milk by their own party structure. I don’t mean to sound like a petulant kid who wants what they want, when they want it, but I personally have a visceral reaction to getting involved in established politics.

Actually, I couldn’t agree more with those sentiments. A few thoughts. First, there’s a long list of issues that need to be addressed, and while we hear from candidates who campaign supporting good solutions, there hasn’t been much follow-though once they win office. Why? Because there hasn’t been a political force backing up those right-thinking elected officials.

Second, the list of issues — from abortion to tax reform to Medicare, Social Security, and even countering the behemoth that is the teacher unions is going to require more organized force than we’ve seen. There is no short cut. Any political success that isn’t ephemeral will have to be manned by committed citizens willing to accomplish all facets of political battle.

That’s exactly why we need a Republican renaissance and political reformation. Until better people step up — albeit as pioneers — and help clean out the proverbial barn, the crummy culture that exists in much of politics will continue to deter honest, professional people from stepping forward to be more than a citizen in name only.

Up next: The discussion continues.

First published in June 2014.

Image credit: theweek.com.