By Hunter Wallace
What happened to “optimism”?
“Does the rise of Donald Trump signal the end of conservatism as we know it? It’s premature to write the obituary, but one has to wonder if the patient isn’t terminally ill.
Generally speaking, the modern conservative movement in America has represented three wings, loosely defined as a) classical liberals/libertarians/fiscal conservatives, b) social conservatives, and c) national security/foreign policy/defense hawks.
Philosophically speaking, at least two of the three wings (fiscal and social conservatives) have every reason to oppose Trump, and the third wing (national defense hawks) should probably favor Marco Rubio or Lindsey Graham.
By my count, Trump should be 0-for-3. The fact that Trump is surging in the polls — despite this — suggests something is up. …
Could it be that the paradigm has shifted? Could it be that the three-winged movement has been replaced by Trump’s “three-ringed circus”? Could it be that the conservative movement is no longer driven by a coalition of fiscal conservatives, people of faith, and those concerned about foreign policy, but instead is driven by a coalition consisting of working class whites, blue collar populists, and anti-immigration hawks?”
“The beginning of the end of the Republican Party has started. On Friday, I told you the Republican Party is dying. Then, yesterday, Ross Douthat in the New York Times echoed my key point.
Mine was that the Republican leaders in Washington would see the decline of Donald Trump as proof that they need do nothing to change. Like the Bourbons of France, they’d forget nothing and learn nothing. …”
“You have to admire the theatricality of this moment, as Donald Trump fisks and then flings the New York Times over the heads of a cheering crowd. The poll numbers from serious organizations are consistent, and they illustrate Trump’s staying power and the desire for an outsider candidate. But it is not just theater: as Matt Lewis notes this morning, contained within Trump’s enduring appeal are the seeds of a conservative crackup.
Trump’s support is solid despite the simple fact of his policy positions in favor of higher taxes, gun restrictions, single-payer, partial-birth abortion, and recent past as a Hillary-donating, Obama-voting Democrat. None of these things can hurt Trump, because none of them matter to his supporters, and because the chief argument against them requires you to believe in the Republican Party as a vehicle for something different than the Democratic – a fact that is no longer an item of belief for many voters. …”
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— Conservative Pundit (@DemsRRealRacist) September 1, 2015