Friday, November 9, 2012
2012 Election - Perspective
By Positively Republican Founder Chris Widener
I'll give you my analysis of what happened in the 2012 Presidential election. This is a foundational analysis, not getting into the nitty gritty. I'm not going to discuss debate performances, celebrity endorsements, etc. I want to tell you what is the very root problem of why our country is almost evenly divided. I also want to t...
ell you how we fix it.
Our foundational problem is one of philosophy. Our national debate has become one that is between two fundamentally diametrically opposed philosophies. You cannot hold one position while holding the other. This is why we are so divided and why people on both sides see the other in such a negative light.
The battle for our nation's soul is the battle between Capitalism and Collectivism (or Socialism, Communism, or other relative synonyms). One side believes in free markets, the other in controlled markets. One believes in individual rights, the other in group rights. One believes in personal charity, the other in government charity. One believes in smaller government, the other in bigger government. One believes in lower taxes, the other in higher taxes.
This isn't just a practical problem. It is a philosophical problem. Both sides don't just believe they simply have a better way. They think they are RIGHT. And, indeed, one is right and the other wrong (I know some of you fluffy, everybody can be right, there is no absolute truth folks will have a hard time getting your brain around that one).
America was built on Capitalism. We are the greatest example of Capitalism the world has ever seen. And it is our commitment to Capitalism and personal freedom that brought about what people the world over now affectionately call, "The American Dream." If every country in the world opened their borders, the earth would tilt off its axis from people coming to America) It is our commitment to Capitalism that drove almost every major act of progress of the 20th century. It is our dedication to Capitalism, Democracy and Freedom that literally saved hundreds of millions of lives as America stepped up to save the world from tyranny. America was the place people longed to come to be free and to have an unlimited future, as bright as they can dream of and as hard as they will work for. If we continue down the path we are on, they will be able to just go to Europe.
Now we stand at the edge of our destiny. Will we return to our roots of Capitalism, or will we jump headlong into Socialism? This election was as clear a choice as we have ever been given. Obama himself said regularly on the campaign trail that we face a fundamentally different choice. Indeed.
So how did Obama get elected? I believe it lies in three kinds of people who voted for him. Two of them we can't do anything about. One of which we can change if we do it right.
The three kinds of people who voted for Obama:
The first are the Collectivists/Communists/Socialists. These are the people who actually admit it. They are the true believers. I have a few friends like this. One is a successful guy who grew up going to Black Panther meetings. He was a Dennis Kucinich guy who switched to Obama because he wanted to win. If your fundamental philosophy is Collectivism, you vote for Obama. His whole history is wrought with involvement with Marxists and Communists. He admits to believing in redistribution (ie, he wants to take your stuff and give it t someone else). He was endorsed by the Communist Party USA!
The second group are what I call the Kardashian Nation. These are just the dumb people who wake up one day and vote for the "cool" guy. These are the people Jay Leno has on his "Jay Walking" segment. These are the people Jon Stewart showed on college campuses who can name every Lady GaGa song, but not the Vice-President (the irony of these campus liberals is that they go to school in wings built by donations from Capitalist Alumni). These are the "Obama gave me a phone" people. When I was in Russia in August, 2008, giving a three day seminar on how to lead a successful life, the Russian people kept asking me what I thought of Obama. On the last day I told them: "The Democrats finally found their pretty face." They finally found a guy who could pitch Socialism in a "cool" way. To people who don't know the issues, he was their guy.
But the third group. This is the most confusing group. They are the ones who gave Obama the election. They are the ones I believe can still be reached. They are the "Live One Way, Vote Another," group. They are the folks who are the backbone of society, not living on the dole. They are Capitalists in their own lives but can be swayed to vote Socialist. They are swayed by any number of reasons: Emotion, pity for the poor, guilt, they too like the cool guy, a lack of understanding of the candidate etc. For example, I have a friend who is a Capitalist. She owns a successful business. She told me that she just "felt" like she should vote for Obama. I offered to take her and her husband to 2016 the movie so she could see behind the curtain. I offered to pay for dinner beforehand, the movie tickets, popcorn, and drinks afterward to discuss. I wanted her to get a better understanding of how the person she was voting for would hurt her business with his policies. She wouldn't take me up on it.
I believe this group can be reached however. Our job as Capitalists is to educate. We need to make sure that we show them how the way they live their personal lives can be supported by a candidate rather than destroyed by one. Capitalism and private property are issues even little children understand. We saw videos this past Halloween of people making the point by taking candy from one kid and giving it to the other and the kids screamed bloody murder! "You can't take my candy and give it to him!" Yet, well-meaning adults vote for politicians who want nothing more than to confiscate their wealth, the fruit of their labor, and give it to someone else in order to secure a voting bloc that will keep them in power.
So, what must we do? Educate. Talk to your friends. Talk about Capitalism. Use basic examples. Talk to them about Capitalism and how it affects their lives in how they vote.
What am I doing about it? I'm literally stopping the writing of my 13th book and have switched to write a book on Capitalism. My agent has already signed off on it and it is a go. It will be out as soon as I can get it out. I want to sway as many people as I can by helping them understand Capitalism.
Some people have accused me of having a bad attitude or having given up. Neither could be further from the truth. It isn't a bad attitude to recognize reality. I still believe in the American Dream. I know I control my own destiny, and you do too. I have a fantastic attitude. I love life. People who are around me know that I love to laugh and have a good time. But I also know that voting matters and politicians can confiscate our success.
I have not given up. I never will. I have 50% of the electorate that stands with me. Together we must take the next four years to reach those who live and think like us, but who vote against their own self-interest and the interest of our country's future.
My challenge to you (and to myself): Work hard. Build your business to the best of your ability. Keep the faith. Pray for our country. Be a proud Capitalist. Educate others. Get involved to a greater degree. We have another shot with House and Senate seats in two years. And another shot at the Presidency in four years. We can still save our country.