Like a solar eclipse, the GOP ‘intellectual’ response to losing was utterly predictable. The idea that conservatism can never fail, just be failed is alive and well. Exhibit ‘A’ comes from the front page story at National Review. Kevin Williamson has three key lessons for the GOP. One might expect some soul searching, introspective critique at NRO given the reality we witnessed last night. Instead, three ridiculous excuses were offered:
1. Ohio likes crony capitalism.
2. Class warfare works.
3. Repealing Obamacare was not a deal cincher in Ohio.
There is not much in this to comfort conservatives. The lessons of Ohio are that Barack Obama is a skillful demagogue, that the ancients were wise to number envy among the deadly sins, and that offering Americans a check is a more fruitful political strategy than offering them the opportunity to take control of and responsibility for their own lives.
You really don’t need to read the explanations after the three excuses. The moral of this story is that the right wing will simply double down on what they’ve done in the past. The shame is that we do need them. We need their best, most intellectually rigorous ideas to enable our system to function. Sadly, all we get is excuses and victim mentality.