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It isn’t Never-Trump or Always-Trump destroying conservatism, it’s Sometimes-Trump

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One of the craziest—or should I say laziest—accusations leveled against me by Trump’s die-hard loyalists whenever I dare to call him out for breaking a campaign promise, getting caught in a lie, or promoting unconstitutional non-conservative ideas, is that I’m a liberal. Sometimes, they go so far as to accuse me of working for George Soros.

As I’ve said many times in response, I don’t work for Mr. Soros, but since money’s been a little tight at the Strident Conservative lately, if anyone has his number, I’d appreciate it if you’d send it my way.

It’s a sad reality that these pathetic taunts are what passes for political discourse in the Age of Trump. Gone are the days when differences could be civilly discussed based on facts instead of emotion.

Another sad reality of this behavior is that it’s a sign that the end of conservatism is near, as Trump’s small army of loyal followers attempt to rebrand conservatism by spreading the lie that he is a conservative and, using binary logic, accusing anyone who opposes him of being a liberal.

This rebranding effort has had an impact. Last week, RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel warned Republican hopefuls that anyone who opposed Trump’s agenda would be “making a mistake.”

McDaniel’s threat was issued following the GOP primary defeat in South Carolina by conservative Mark Sanford after he was personally targeted by Trump himself. Sanford’s crime? Disloyalty to the NY Liberal.

Another source of damage to conservatism has come from evangelicals and the so-called conservative media. In the name of self-preservation, they choose to surrender their principles by promoting the lie that Trump is a conservative. Some of these voices have taken to labelling conservatives who oppose Trump as Never-Trump conservatives, or worse, branding them as liberals and/or Democrats, as was recently written in a piece at TheFederalist.com:

“Trump may be an unattractive and deeply flawed messenger for contemporary conservatism. But loathe though they might be to admit it, what’s left of the Never-Trump movement needs to come to grips with the fact that the only words that currently describe them are liberals and Democrats.”

Then there are those who have adopted a Sometimes-Trump attitude about the president, where everything Trump does is measured using a good Trump/bad Trump barometer. While it has become fashionable for Sometimes-Trump conservatives to stand on their soap boxes condemning both Never-Trump conservatives and Always-Trump faux conservatives, I believe that this politically bipolar approach to Trump is the greatest threat of all to Constitutional conservatism in America.

Sometimes-Trump conservatives have accepted the lie that it’s okay to do a little evil in exchange for a greater good. Though they may fly a conservative banner, their lukewarm attitude about Trump is much like the attitude we see in the Laodicean church mentioned in the Book of Revelations (3:15-16).

“I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”

Trump is a double-minded man unstable in all his ways (James 1:8). When lukewarm Sometimes-Trump conservatives choose to overlook this reality, they end up watering-down conservatism to the point that it has no value or power to change America’s course.

As lukewarm Sometimes-Trump conservatives point to the Always-Trump and Never-Trump factions as the reason for today’s conservative divide, remember that it’s the unenthusiastic, noncommittal, indifferent, half-hearted, apathetic, uninterested, unconcerned, lackadaisical, passionless, laid back, couldn’t-care-less conservative imposters in the middle who are really responsible.

Originally posted on The Strident Conservative.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

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Economy

To those who don’t care about the national debt, consider this

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To those who dont care about the national debt consider this

The national debt has been growing dramatically for decades. It’s so great that most Americans seem to dismiss it altogether; if we haven’t been harmed by it already, it obviously can’t hurt us, right? This sort of “head in the sand” thinking is why lawmakers refuse to tackle it. As long as the people don’t seem to care, why should they?

It’s time to care. It’s been time to care for a while but the collective ignoring of it has brought it to the level that now, in 2018, we are nearing the point of no return.

Why? Because the astronomical interest is now going to noticeably affect how the government operates. We’ve spent years pretending like the interest isn’t a big deal even though it was growing to unsustainable levels during the Clinton administration. Now, we’re seeing it reach levels that are tangible. Why? Because the cost to cover it is now great enough that other areas are going to need to be cut.

In 2017, the interest on our debt was $263 billion. That’s 6.6% of federal government spending. We’re on track to spend more on interest than Medicaid in 2020 and more on interest than defense by 2023. Let me repeat that:

By 2023, we will spend more in interest on the national debt than we spend on national defense.

Normally, we can take CBO predictions with a grain of salt because they’re usually off (see Obamacare predictions for CBO’s epic failures) but this one relies on simple math. Even in a humming economy with the best case scenarios in play, you can’t overcome interest without paying down the debt.

Neither Democrats nor Republicans have any intention of paying off the debt. This is why candidate Trump went from promising to pay off the national debt in eight years, then ten years, then paying part of it off, then finally proclaiming himself the “king of debt” – all within the period of one month on the campaign trail.

To get the national debt in line will require an ironclad commitment backed by irrevocable legislation that spans two- to four-decades. It means entitlement reform, budget limits, cutting entire agencies and possibly even departments, and commitments to rein in all forms of discretionary spending.

In other words, the only way to get the national debt to a manageable level – not even getting it to zero but somewhere much lower than it is – would require commitments by politicians that none of them are willing to make. Oh, there might be a couple of Senators and a handful of Congressmen who would embrace such measures, but even those ones won’t buck the system to the point that they’d push hard for it without a mandate by voters.

We are the only hope for the very near future. If Americans don’t care that our tax dollars are being used to pay interest on the mountainous debt that has been accumulated in recent years, let alone the debt that preceded it, then we shouldn’t expect politicians to care, either. This can has been kicked down the road for decades, but the road is coming to a very abrupt end soon. It’s beyond unsustainable. We’re on the verge of collapsing under the weight of our own mistakes.

As long as voters ignore the national debt, neither party will pay attention to it, either. We will drown in our own ignorance if we don’t act soon. In the past, they said the debt will affect our children and grandchildren. Now, the debt is starting to affect us.

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Opinions

Orange County didn’t turn blue because of Trump. It turned blue because of fiscal irresponsibility.

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Orange County didnt turn blue because of Trump It turned blue because of fiscal irresponsibility

The “angry suburban backlash” against President Trump is what many analysts and commentators blame for the reversal in control of the House of Representatives. It’s partially correct, but there’s a bigger challenge for the GOP: red-leaning population centers like Orange County that seem to be shifting blue as well.

The suburbs may have the voters the Republicans need, but heavily populated affluent areas like Orange County have the money Republicans need.

Orange County just went from mostly red to totally blue in the House of Representatives. It has as many or more congressional districts than over half the states in the country. And until this year, four of them could be counted as “leaning-” or “solid-Republican.”

Now, they are all blue.

Democrats Complete Sweep of Orange County, Once a GOP Haven

https://www.rollcall.com/news/politics/democrats-sweep-orange-county-once-a-gop-strongholdWith Democrat Gil Cisneros’ victory in California’s 39th District, Democrats have defeated all four Republicans in Orange County, an area former President Ronald Reagan once referred to as the place “where the good Republicans go before they die.”

Cisneros, a Navy veteran and lottery winner, defeated former GOP state Assemblywoman Young Kim in the increasingly diverse 39th District. He had garnered 50.8 percent of the vote compared to Kim’s 49.2 percent when the Associated Press called the race nearly two weeks after Election Day. He won by roughly 3,500 votes.

This is a bigger deal than most realize and has national implications. It demonstrates two things quite clearly. First, the organizational structures of the party in California and the local area are abysmal. They have been for a while, but Orange County survived their bumbling because the GOP held a favorable fiscal reputation here. Second, President Trump’s influence is limited in areas where higher education and income levels make up the bulk of voters.

Tax cuts weren’t the big winner in places like Orange County because they weren’t accompanied by spending cuts. Fiscal responsibility is more important in areas like Orange County than other Republican strongholds. Local publications lambasted Congress and the White House when they passed spending bills that would make President Obama blush.

In California, we live with a state government that spends incessantly. We don’t want a federal government that does the same.

If the GOP doesn’t start acting like the party that wants lower spending, they have no chance of regaining a foothold in areas that are less concerned about kneeling football players and more concerned about budget deficits and the national debt.

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Guns and Crime

Gun rights activists: Stop acting like we don’t hold every high ground

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Gun rights activists Stop acting like we don't hold every high ground

Forgive me if I offend any of my fellow gun rights activists. It’s my intention to educate, not irritate. But I’ve become increasingly annoyed by arguments that play into the leftist agenda. We have the high ground. When you have the high ground, you don’t go down to the enemy’s level. We hold the high ground.

We hold the moral high ground. For every mass shooting incident that takes lives, there are dozens of stories that don’t get nearly the same attention but demonstrate how gun owners prevent crimes. They’re out there defending themselves and others from people who would do them harm.

We hold the intellectual high ground. Where do most gun crimes occur? Where gun laws are obtuse. Chicago is the shining example of how obtuse gun laws prevent citizens from defending themselves. How often do we see gun violence in gun free zones?

We hold the historical high ground. The first thing a government does before turning against its people is take away the people’s ability to defend their rights. One of the most common leftist arguments is that Americans have no reason to fear oppression from the government. This is a backwards argument as it has been shown on multiple occasions that the government was hampered from oppressing American citizens because of the presence of weapons. It’s naive to think the government would never try to oppress us. History shows they already have at times and certainly will again in the future.

We hold the constitutional high ground. This needs no explanation.

We hold the emotional high ground. This is hard for most to understand since it’s emotional responses to mass shooting that usually prompt calls for gun control. That’s exactly why we hold the emotional high ground. As long as we remain consistent and stop operating in the leftists’ emotional echo chambers, we can maintain control of the emotional argument. It’s easy for people to be affected by senseless violence, but that’s no reason to ignore common sense or logical discipline.

What gets to me is when gun rights activists start making arguments such as logistics. I cringe every time I see stats about how many AR rifles are owned. The argument that there are so many out there it would be impractical to take them away is ludicrous. It’s like saying, “You may be right to want to take away guns but it would be too hard.”

The push for gun control is gaining momentum. We cannot give the gungrabbers an inch. We don’t need to. Our arguments are righteous. The only way they’ll win is if we let them distract us and bring us down to fighting on their level.

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