Listening to Rush Limbaugh the past week in the wake of the presidential election, he makes an interesting point: it’s hard to compete with Santa Claus. And he’s right.
People vote how they live. Improving the country by having political parties change is the tail wagging the dog. We need to change how people live. Give people tools to be independent, give them resources and encouragement so that they can say, “I don’t need the government, I can do a better job myself”, and they will. And while they will still vote how they live, how they live will be more in line with the founding principles of this nation: rugged individualism. American exceptionalism. Divine providence.
What is needed is to give people resources on how to pay off debt and manage money, how to garden (organic!), save money on utility bills (green!), hunt and fish (free range!), prepare for natural disasters, save money by doing routine maintenance on their own car and home, create their own financial safety net in case of job loss, etc. In reality, many things associated with liberals (“free range”!) if spun in a different context appeal to conservatives (“hunting! guns!”), and in the end are truly libertarian (“I can feed myself! guns = freedom!”) in nature. Independence and personal freedom is by its very nature libertarian. The politics of division have made the two sides come to hate each other so much that people can’t seem to see past party affiliation and realize that down deep, most Americans agree on most issues, and it’s misinformation from the two parties that have skewed their views on various topics. (“Guns are evil!”)
If this common ground is embraced, all the divisive issues are left behind, and suddenly people are agreeing on 85% of topics, leaving only a little disagreement that can be rationally and logically dealt with since no one is accusing the other for hating children and old people. The only way to save the nation is to change how people live and that means changing their relationship with government by changing how they think.
Only then will Americans change the way they vote, and only then will we be able to save our Republic. Only then will we grow up and stop believing in Santa Claus.