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Linda Buzzell Headshot

Now Here's an Idea -- What if the GOP Was Really Conservative?

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As the GOP frantically searches for new ways of reaching the American electorate now that they've failed to convince a majority of Americans that supporting the wealthy is good for everyone, I'd like to suggest a novel idea: what if the Republican party actually supported conservatism?

As in conserving and preserving the best of what we have (not just money) and moving forward with that.

For example, Americans are blessed to live on an amazing piece of real estate that has sadly fallen into disrepair, contaminated and despoiled by the greedy. What if conservatives became "green conservationists" with a popular campaign to restore our great inheritance of clean land, water and air while supporting green energy and green business? They could also follow in Republican President Teddy Roosevelt's footsteps, conserving large swaths of land for future generations.

What else is worth saving, repairing and refurbishing? How about local family farms... old-fashioned community... a traditional diet of real food grown close to home... being concerned about our neighbors' well-being... taking care of the sick and needy... loving our neighbors as ourselves... not spending more than we earn... shunning those who become wealthy at others' expense... being satisfied with "enough"... enjoying the outdoors and our animal friends... patronizing locally-run businesses... not meddling in other nations' affairs unless it's really a question of our own security (not just the well-being of international corporations that couldn't give a damn about the welfare of Americans)... supporting education and minimally-invasive, compassionate health care... honoring our elders... living simply but being rich in the intangibles... restoring historic buildings and trashed landscapes and neighborhoods... care for creation... respect for the authority of whatever Higher Power we acknowledge, including Mother Nature...

This brand of old-fashioned conservatism might appeal not only to the party's Christian base but also to a whole lot of other people, young and old, who wish we could enjoy some of the better aspects of traditional American life that have been lost in the rush to wealth, corporate power, high technology, ubiquitous media and military dominance of the planet.

It's a nice thought, isn't it? But, it'll never work. The GOP no longer seems to care about what the majority of Americans might think or want, including their own base. The big money guys who fund the party and richly support the lobbyists and operatives would hate to donate money to support such radically conservative ideas.

Besides, Washington GOP insiders seem to see no need to win elections any more -- the Karl Roves of this world are getting far too rich running cons on the big money moochers to really care if any Republicans actually get elected.