National recovery depends on rolling back previous leftist victories. That means giving no more gains to the left through compromises, cutting government outlays on “entitlements” and “discretionary” spending, and cutting back both regulations and the legal authority for bureaucrats to impose more regulations. That’s the only way to save the economy, promote growth, and create more jobs.
The pendulum of public policy must be swung back. If that is not achieved, our country is headed straight for something much worse than the similarly-caused financial crisis today in European countries. It would be worse because, unlike for Europe now, there is no source on Earth capable of bailing out a bankrupt United States.
Rolling back big government is the greatest political problem in the United States since 1860.
Every expenditure of government funds has a constituency to support it fiercely. And the anti-reform constituency includes more than the direct recipients of government checks.
Lobbyists are a major part of the problem. Most of them make most of their money by seeking financial advantages from government for their clients. They will use their contacts and skills to prevent any reduction in government power to make decisions to favor special interests.
Similarly, trial lawyers are always and everywhere the most active foes of tort reform, even though tort reform certainly increases general prosperity.
Lobbyists and trial lawyers will fight conservatives in the political process, but the ideological left doesn’t limit itself to peaceful, civilized activity.
Let us suppose that the conservatives newly activated in politics succeed in electing a determined conservative President and a Congress with determined conservative majorities in both Houses. What would the left do?
The American left is still shaken by the success of spontaneous conservative grassroots participation in tea party activities leading up to the 2010 elections. In desperation, leftists now hope to profit from the Occupy Wall Street gatherings which have spread to many other locations.
Haven’t the mainstream print and broadcast media, overwhelmingly liberal, given massive and sympathetic coverage to the Occupiers? Isn’t this a good way to build enthusiasm among the base the left needs to win the 2012 elections?
Probably not, even though Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, many extremist labor unions, the Socialist Party USA, the Communist Party USA, and others on the left are singing praises of the current demonstrators. So many want to lead the Occupiers.
One week after the Occupy Wall Street protesters first gathered, the New York Times ran an opinion piece by Michael Kazin, “Whatever Happened to the American Left?,” offering his guidance in left-wing movement building. He urged the demonstrators to focus on “demanding millions of new jobs that pay a livable wage.”
A fat lot of good that demand would do.
Dr. John Lenczowski founded the Institute of World Politics (IWP), an independent graduate school, in 1990 to teach what no one else did: statecraft.
Statecraft, as Dr. Lenczowski explained, consists of different "arts": military power and political warfare, political action and information programs, and peace-making and law enforcement. In concert, these arts are the “instruments of national power."
Yet many American officials are unaware of them.
After work for the State Department and the National Security Council, Dr. Lenczowski perceived that people "were inadequately intellectually and professionally prepared" for their jobs in government.
He founded IWP to provide that missing intellectual and professional preparation in foreign affairs, defense, and intelligence.
Today IWP, located in Washington, DC, offers three Master's programs, eight Certificate of Graduate Study programs, and an internship for college students.
The margins of victory in the American public policy process may be smaller now than at any other time in American history. You can make a difference, now and in the future.
In my years of political activity beginning in 1960, I have found no shortage of conservatives willing to tell the political parties what they should do.
But I have noticed a great shortage of conservatives willing to take the time, spend the money, and pay the political price necessary to achieve and hold power in a political party.
Unless more conservatives accept the responsibility of political participation inside the parties, thirty years from now conservatives will still be complaining that the parties fail to do what they ought to do.
A principled conservative who wishes to succeed within a party should heed ten points.
With the recent elections behind us, how should conservatives move forward? Who should lead this movement? LI President Morton Blackwell answers these questions in his recent blog post.
The Leadership Institute has released its study of the publicly disclosed political contributions of corporate and business association political action committees in the most recent (2007-2008) election cycle.
The study reports fully on the giving of all 1,036 business-related PACs which gave $25,000 or more to federal election candidates in the 2007-2008 election cycle.
The Laws of Public Policy
1. Never give a bureaucrat a chance to say no.
2. Don’t fire all your ammunition at once.
3. Don’t get mad except on purpose.
4. Effort is admirable. Achievement is valuable.