The gravamen of Christie’s remarks was that Obama panders and governs according to polls. Romney — a non-panderer! That should’ve been a laugh line. Take, too, Christie’s assertion that Republicans “don’t believe our seniors are selfish.” This is wildly at odds with the campaign that Romney is actually running, one that is predicated on the assumption that voters age 55 and over will jealously guard their Medicare benefits in the voting booth. Christie, wisely, chose not to link the Romney platform, which calls for across-the-board tax cuts, with the notion of “shared sacrifice.”
Christie, also wisely, chose not to elaborate on the “hard truths” that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are so brave to tell us: namely, lower taxes, more defense spending, the same budget allotment for Medicare that the Obama administration proposes, and less spending on the poor and some other stuff they’ve yet to specify.
Over and over, Christie talked about the “hard truths” that only conservatives are willing to tell people. If only that were true! There are many hard truths that we conservatives can’t even tell ourselves. Take this, from Mike Lofgren’s widely-read TAC piece, red-hot on the site now:
Almost all conservatives who care to vote congregate in the Republican Party. But Republican ideology celebrates outsourcing, globalization, and takeovers as the glorious fruits of capitalism’s “creative destruction.” As a former Republican congressional staff member, I saw for myself how GOP proponents of globalized vulture capitalism, such as Grover Norquist, Dick Armey, Phil Gramm, and Lawrence Kudlow, extolled the offshoring and financialization process as an unalloyed benefit. They were quick to denounce as socialism any attempt to mitigate its impact on society. Yet their ideology is nothing more than an upside-down utopianism, an absolutist twin of Marxism. If millions of people’s interests get damaged in the process of implementing their ideology, it is a necessary outcome of scientific laws of economics that must never be tampered with, just as Lenin believed that his version of materialist laws were final and inexorable.
If a morally acceptable American conservatism is ever to extricate itself from a pseudo-scientific inverted Marxist economic theory, it must grasp that order, tradition, and stability are not coterminous with an uncritical worship of the Almighty Dollar, nor with obeisance to the demands of the wealthy. Conservatives need to think about the world they want: do they really desire a social Darwinist dystopia?