Should the Republicans Mount a 'Charm Offensive'?
The GOP sucks at public relations. Almost everyone knows it.
Sorry to use that vulgarism, but it's the only word that fits. Since Ronald Reagan, Republicans have had, in the words of Cool Hand Luke's Strother Martin, "a failure to communicate." A bad one.
Yes, they have some victories, but, given that they usually have almost all the facts and truth on their side, the number of losses is staggering.
Conservative leaders like Palin and now Cruz are great at preaching to the choir, but almost never get beyond it. And the so-called moderates and RINOs excite no one.
It's a nasty situation -- particularly now in the face of the umpty-ump government shutdown with more undoubtedly to come and the Obamamedia lined up to blame intransigent Republicans.
Oh, for a Ronald Reagan!
But failing that, because a new RR doesn't seem to be on the horizon, what can be done?
I propose it's time to mount a Republican "charm offensive."
Don't laugh. It seems to be working for the Islamic Republic of Iran -- and if it can work for the mullahs, whose minions scraped makeup off the faces of women with razor blades, it can work for anyone.
And when I say "charm offensive," I don't mean cozying up to the editors of the New York Times or the execs at CBS. That's about as useful as trying to hit the moon with a water pistol.
Here's what I mean. Mount a "charm offensive" toward the American people. Start to seduce them. Almost everyone believes in conservative ideas, especially in the economic area, when they stop to think about it. It's what most parents normally teach their children. They're just not allowed to admit it in the heat of partisan debate. They have to pull for their team or face unpleasant feedback from family and friends. Also, they're prey to the foregone conclusions of the media.
So stop yelling and screaming about Obama and calling him the worst president in history, even if he is. Stop fulminating against Harry Reid and Holder and the rest of the abysmal crew. Stop even excoriating the execrable Dems in Congress who just voted themselves exemptions from the Orwellian Affordable Care Act that you can't have.
Instead, treat the liberals like misguided children who need help -- because, in some ways, that's what they are. They are children lost in ideologies that failed decades ago. Make the public your allies in this. They know liberalism (the modern kind) doesn't work. But take an "aw, shucks" approach. Reagan would. Remember "There you go again."
Approach it this way -- how can we help these guys (the libs) see what any ordinary citizen (or person for that matter) knows? And do it smiling.
In other words, co-opt America. It's waiting for it.... and it needs it.
And don't for a moment act superior or think you know it all. (Note to self: that means you.) Nobody does. Things have come to a terrible pass. We all know it. A different tack must be taken. Repeating the approaches of the past is foolish.
This doesn't mean, of course, you don't tell the truth. This isn't rehashed "compassionate conservatism." It's more pragmatic than that -- and frankly more cynical. It's playing to win. You just do it in the most ingratiating manner and in a way that makes the other think, as much as possible, that it was their idea.
We all do things like this in business and professional situations all the time without giving it a second thought. Our economic survival often depends on it. It's time to do it in our public life. Our national survival depends on it.
(Artwork based on a modified Shutterstock.com image.)