Although I had created a video I decided to mothball my idea of regulate videos in favour of writing out what I saw when following the two conventions – following both the ‘Democracy Now!” coverage along with the ‘Washington Week’ from PBS/NPR along with many other outlets that have been covering both sides. When it came to the Republican Party what i saw was a convention of cringe worthy old white people waving flags with funny hats trying to convince themselves that they’re the ‘true Americans’ aka ‘real Americans’ from the ‘fly over states’ whilst ignoring that they’re a dying demographic. The Republican Party ultimately has hitched itself to a dying demographic which is quickly turning into a protest party rather than a viable party that can actually win. Whilst the conservative movement in UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand have adjusted to the new reality of a pluralistic and socially liberal society thus able to be a viable party to win elections, the Republicans seem to be like King Canute trying to stop the unstoppable force of change and slowly becoming an irrelevant party if it weren’t for the gerrymandering that takes place.
What is even depressing are the speeches themselves which was nothing short of ‘doom and gloom’ and ‘the county is going to hell in a hand basket’ so gone from the days of the Ronald Reagan ‘morning in America’:
In favour of the ‘we’re all completely fucked’ and ‘they’re coming to get you’. Every speaker was doom and gloom, there was no positive vision, there was no outreach independent and swinging voters, there was no policies being announced with the only rise in enthusiasm came from what appeared to be as the unified hatred that the Republican base have of Hillary Clinton. It is a sad situation when the Republican Party, rather than being unified around a set of policies and a positive vision, the party is unified around a single minded hatred of Hillary Clinton which, quite frankly, is an unhealthy basis on which a party can maintain unity just as it is toxic when a party is unified around the cult of personality associated with a leader.
The Democrats on the other side had a campaign that had all the feeling of Reagan’s ‘It’s morning in America’ with great speeches, a positive outlook, a ‘yes we know there are challenges but we’re going to work on those challenges with these ideas…..”. In other words, as noted by commentators on Democracy Now! it sounded like the Republican Party of the 1980’s – optimistic, aspirational and looking forward to the future with positive policies that benefit everyone. Then there was the ‘fly over’ of the event centre and every race, colour, creed and orientation is represented which heavily contrasted to the angry middle aged white people who dominated the Republic convention. One party represents the America of 50 years ago and the other party represents the America of the future because in the end it’ll be demographics coupled with an intransigent party structure that’ll ultimately undermine the Republicans ability to adapt to the new political reality. It does make me wonder whether long term we’ll see the more centre right candidates of the Democrats end up working with the moderate Republicans to ultimately form either a party or Libertarian Party merge with these moderates to create a centre right party to ultimately replace the Republicans long term.