The Headwind Against Conservatism (Part 3)

Phrasing.  Target segment.   Demographics.   Optics.  Brand identity.   Push polling.  Vision.  Image.  Equal time.  Messaging.

Am I talking about marketing, or politics?  Well…both.  The American game of politics is essentially an intense marketing battle.

Over the years, I have collected a list of ways in which, despite its dogged determination in the face of adversity, the conservative movement struggles against a strong headwind of superficial platitudes blowing out of the liberal/progressive side. 

Please see Part 1 of this series for a longer intro and the first portion of the list.  See Part 2 for the second portion of the list.

.

Here’s the 3rd portion of my list:

24. It’s easy for liberals to claim that conservatives, when in power, are essentially as wasteful and growth-happy as liberals.  (Actually, over the last 24 years they might be right.)  It’s harder for conservatives to elect disciplined representatives to office, and then stay involved in the political process to keep the size and reach of government in check.

25. It’s easy for liberals to claim education policy must be administered at the national level.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain how much more efficient and competitive our educators could be if education policy and funding were kept at the local and state level.

26. It’s easy for liberals to encourage us to be patriotic and spread the wealth around so it’s shared by everyone .  It’s harder for conservatives to explain that people simply will not work as productively to benefit strangers as they will to benefit their OWN household.

27. It’s easy for liberals to self-select activist careers in fields like media, politics, and education that “advocate change” through big solutions.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain that people in those fields rarely have a clue how to stimulate economic productivity and jobs.

28. It’s easy for liberals to claim government must be the arbiter of redistribution of income, as the sole benefactor to the poor.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain the inefficiency of government welfare, and to push themselves to step up to this huge challenge of private alternatives.

29. It’s easy for liberals to define “liberty” as the right to experience a comfortable and secure life, made possible by redistributive policies.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain that “liberty” means the unhindered freedom to lawfully work hard to innovate and earn, burdening others as little as possible, with success or failure tied to their toil and creativity.

30. It’s easy for liberals to claim that big successful businesses are greedy and exploitive of consumers.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain that if we had fewer successful businesses, we’d have fewer jobs, higher consumer prices, and less tax revenue.

31. It’s easy for liberals to market their ideology to a captive young audience due to their unionized stranglehold on K-12 and higher education.  It’s harder for conservatives to market their ideology to the under-25 generation since most students do not want to displease liberal teachers.

32. It’s easy for liberals to proclaim that the judiciary INTERPRETS the law.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain that Article III stipulated judiciary composition and jurisdiction only, because judgement of law violators was the intent — even when judicial review began,  that didn’t mean the unelected judiciary became free to RE-INTERPRET the Constitution.

33. It’s easy for liberals to claim that conservatives are old fashioned, ignorant, and stubborn people.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain that every problem doesn’t need an overnight solution, or even a full solution.  Trade-offs are required, to maintain fiscal stability.

34. It’s easy for liberals to coalesce around their ever-shifting platform during election seasons, as softly portrayed by the like-minded liberal media .  It’s harder for conservatives to unify their tradition-based platform, especially when any little rift is then hyperventilated in the hostile media.

35. It’s easy for liberals to claim economic stability & prosperity comes only via powerful and omniscient centralized control.  It’s harder for conservatives to explain the economy runs better when left to be guided by daily supply & demand signals from the market choices of 315 million free participants.

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I invite you to pick one or two that stand out in your mind, and leave a comment.  If there are any that aren’t clear, let me know and I will clarify using a few more words.  For those you agree with, do you have an example or a strategy to share?  Or if you have one I didn’t think of, please submit it using the same template:  “It’s easy for liberals to….  It’s harder for conservatives to….”

I have more than 40 in all.  I will share the final set in Part 4, with a conclusion.

(photo credit)

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About Necessary and Proper

Jeff believes in the Individual's ability to excel when liberty and freedom of choice are protected. Also believes in the Community's ability to take care of the vast majority of its own issues and needs when the federal government leaves the Community's resources and sphere of control alone. State and local choice produce better results than centralized federal control. https://necessaryandpropergovt.wordpress.com/
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9 Responses to The Headwind Against Conservatism (Part 3)

  1. Soduhson says:

    “25. It’s easy for liberals to claim education policy must be administered at the national level. It’s harder for conservatives to explain how much more efficient and competitive our educators could be if education policy and funding were kept at the local and state level.”

    Like I said in my first post. Education is the one area where I really part with conservatives. I think policy should be administered at a national level. However, I do not agree with “one size fits all” testing (which is usually the result). I think government intervention can enforce a national curriculum that emphasizes individual students needs and strengths. On the otherhand, if education was kept at a state or local level, then some children will suffer because they were born in the wrong place.

    Like

  2. Greg Ward says:

    Brilliant series Jeff – perfectly encapsulating the frustrations of “branding” the conservative message. Too often we are in a position of merely standing athwart history yelling “stop!”. Though valuable (and convincing enough for me!), this isn’t a winning electoral strategy. As you demonstrate, we must win the battle at the level of basic language, ideas, and the framing of debate. Reagan appealed to broad swaths of the populace NOT because he accepted the media mantra of what “outreach” would mean, but because he convincingly spoke to the concerns and needs of ALL Americans using the universal language of freedom and opportunity. Union households that had voted Democratic for generations were convinced that he represented them, that he believed in them and in their integrity and importance. They hadn’t seen this from their union bosses, and they had felt only contempt and condescension from their Democratic leaders.
    How do we break out of our current paradigm and recapture this broad appeal? How do we make it clear that economic opportunity and personal freedom knows no interest group or racial identity?

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  3. bullright says:

    #34 is correct. But conservatives also must define(and frame) Liberals’ evolving platform while coalescing themselves. We have failed on the former, which gives less significance to the latter.

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  4. xPraetorius says:

    #27! So common to see liberals achieve positions of prominence despite the fact that they’ve never for a moment worked in a job where they made a good or offered a service for which others might be willing to pay money. Our current President and the First Lady come quickly to mind.

    Try to imagine a Conservative without that vital understanding of human economic interaction.

    Best,

    — x

    Like

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