Let’s begin with a question.
Riddle me this: movies that promote our values of faith, family, and freedom are dominating the box office. We’re selling more books than ever before. We have more infrastructure to mobilize our grassroots than ever before. We have more conferences to equip and encourage one another than ever before. The most successful cable news network by far leans to the Right. For the last five years in a row more Americans have identified themselves in Gallup polling as “conservative” than any other ideological group. And after this last election we now have the fewest Democrats in the legislative branch nationwide since before the Great Depression.
Yet despite all of this success, how is it the size of government continues to grow, real wages continue to stagnate, the culture is still spiraling towards Gomorrah, and we’re fighting the same internal battles within the Republican Party that venerable conservative trailblazers like Richard Viguerie and Phyllis Schlafly have been fighting for 50 years?
This is the existential question of our movement. In this column I intend to do my best to answer it.
Hearing the answer won’t be easy, but it could very well be necessary for the survival of our constitutional republic. While I have tremendous respect and admiration for Viguerie and Schlafly, I don’t want our generation to have to keep re-taking the same ground they once did (and I don’t believe they would want us to). I want our generation to build on the foundation they laid and advance the cause of liberty for the next generation. To do that, we have to learn from the failures of our elders as well as their successes.
We keep losing the country even as we win. I believe it’s because we’re clinging to this false hope: keep the base of the organization solid and the rest of the organization will follow, but the exact opposite is true.
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