Rules for Republicans

1. Put your money where your mouth is.

America is in a fight for its soul and its future. As this blogger recommends:

As someone who is woefully underemployed, I don’t have large stashes of cash to send to candidates, so I was thinking that the best option would be to contribute $10 every week to a candidate of my choice until the election. Incidentally, the candidate I’ve chosen is Rick Berg, who hopes to unseat Earl Pomeroy (D-ND).

If you want to stop the progressives in their tracks, it’s going to take money contributed to the campaigns of their opponents. Ask yourself: “Should I kick in $50 to ten different congressional campaigns this year? Or suffer vastly larger losses when the U.S. goes bankrupt and I lose my job?”

2. Diversify your politician portfolio.

You diversify your investment portfolio to reduce the risk that any single investment will disappoint you. Diversify your political contributions for the same reason. I’m making small  contributions ($20-$50) to a number of different candidates around the country, such as Pia Varma, a Republican running for Pennsylvania Congressional District 1, and Vaughn Ward, who is running for Idaho Congressional District 1. And I am actually contributing to two different Republicans running for Idaho State Senate District 17 -- the louder their primary battle in this urban, Democratic seat, the more conservative ideas will be heard by voters.

3. Special interest money is the enemy -- even when it is corporate contributions to Republicans.

Unfortunately, when corporate PACs give money to Republicans, it is seldom done to protect free markets or individual liberties. Sometimes the goal is protecting a business from government regulation -- but as often as not, it is to protect a business or industry from “ruinous competition.”

In 2004, the Bush administration made serious attempts at health care reform -- but couldn’t get free market proposals through a Republican Congress because health insurers didn’t want the competition from interstate association health plans. The only way to break special interest control of Congress is to elect candidates who don’t see government as an instrument for protecting their backers.

How to do that? See rule #1.

4. Financial collapse takes precedence over everything else.

I’m mostly a social conservative. I don’t agree with libertarians on some issues, and vice versa. But guess what? We’ve got a bigger problem.

Moody’s is talking about the possibility of lowering the rating of U.S. Treasury bonds because of how severe the deficits are that Obama is intent on creating. Lowering the rating means that the interest rate that the government has to pay goes up -- and that makes it that much harder to pay down the national debt when Congress again has adult supervision. We all need to focus on a smaller and more fiscally responsible federal government, and elect either conservatives or libertarians to Congress as appropriate to a particular congressional district. We have a common enemy that is larger than our differences.

We can still debate, but anyone who sits out a campaign because “he’s a libertarian” or “she’s a conservative” is helping to elect someone that is neither.