News & Politics

Conservatives Need a New, Trump-Free Third Way

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Writing at his blog Protein Wisdom, classically liberal blogger Jeff Goldstein argues that now is the time for a resetting of the conservative movement. His piece is a follow-up to this article by Steve Deace,  a prominent radio talker and activist from Iowa, in which he argues that the #NeverTrump movement has to use this opportunity to rebuild the conservative movement (and a conservative party) from the ground up.

Deace writes:

Compromise has gotten us nowhere because compromise was never the intention of our enemies. It is time for a righteous crusade in defense of federalism, and the saving wisdom of God-inspired subsidiary that will be relentless, unapologetic and totally immune to the fear-baiting the system uses to keep us from truly fighting it.

And he concludes:

There should be no splicing the old fake conservative movement back together, for if we did so we would be left with nothing but a Frankenstein’s monster. A new birth of freedom is our only course of action, and that means dispensing with posers, liars, con men and hacks once and for all. They have been nothing but a swarm of locusts to the cause of liberty.

In other words, conservatives need to distance themselves from the Republican Party and fight the good fight in a different way, perhaps even in a different party.

But what should that movement and party stand for exactly? Goldstein knows:

Six items. Listed. Cleanly, clearly, in a form even those reared on PowerPoint can readily digest. For a party as yet unnamed. That’s all that’s necessary to lay out the makings of a new movement, I believe — one that isn’t really new at all but rather has been bracketed by the “progress” of the Gramscian long march the left has deployed to devalue American Exceptionalism, and that too many of the “right” have either adopted or surrendered to. Here are those six items, in no particular order:

1) Individual liberty
2) Federalism and representative republicanism
3) Constitutionalism
4) Judicial originalism
5) National sovereignty
6) Free-market capitalism

These are the foundations of a new and potentially revolutionary party, one that does not react defensively to being principled nor considers “purity” in defense of its core beliefs anything but solid earth upon which to pitch its tent. Anyone can join this party; but to do so they must accept as inviolable the 6 foundational platform items. The price of admission, in other words, is a belief in the social compact upon which this country was founded. Nothing more.

Conservatives have a choice: they can either roll over and play dead, or they can get up now that they’ve been knocked down, purge themselves from any weaknesses, and get back into the ring. Before they do so, however, they need a clear plan and carefully worded principles and guidelines that will help them distinguish themselves from The Donald, and provide a valid alternative to both major parties. These two pieces guide us in the right direction. Now is the time for action.

Let the revolution start. Today.