For the past five years Americans for a Free Republic (AFR) has been working to mount an independent political challenge to the power elites of Washington who dominate our lives with a hideous regulatory state that one finds in dystopian novels.
We felt compelled to mount such a challenge because for many decades now both Democrats and Republicans have been part of this despotic process. They have created a monopoly in the political system that gives us only “bigger and bigger government.” Our once staunch and self-reliant people capitulate more and more ignominiously with each passing year to demanding more out of life than they are willing to put in. Our resplendent freedoms are wilting like severed orchids in the scorching sun.
We at AFR realized that to stop this dictatorial process of American collectivization, the statist grip on the political system must be broken. We reasoned that the Republican Party must be replaced with a “freedom party” that upholds the original vision of America’s founders.
We reasoned that in order to do this, a third political party must be launched to do to the Republican Party what the Republican Party did to the Whigs in 1856. But this past year has brought about a shift in our thinking. We still believe that the salvation of America depends upon replacing the Republican Party with a true “freedom party.”
But perhaps such replacement does not need to be brought about by sledge-hammer blows from a third-party movement. Perhaps this crucial GOP transformation can be done by sledge-hammer blows from within. Perhaps a candidate can be found who is strong enough in mind to strike fear in the crony capitalists so heinously plundering personal wealth at the expense of the principles of freedom. Perhaps a candidate can be found courageous enough in heart to challenge the sickly pundits who have no idea what “federalism” is and think, with George W. Bush, that the Constitution is nothing but a piece of paper.
Out of the Blue
Often in history, revolutionary reform appears out of the blue in a way that is totally unexpected. We at AFR believe such a revolutionary reform may now be upon us. The radical transformation of the Republican Party appears to be underway, and the dramatic catalyst is the political campaign of Donald Trump.
If this is so, then the old, established Bush-Dole-McCain-Romneyized GOP is going to collapse with the slash-and-burn, attack-style campaign that Trump has launched. We welcome such a collapse because we know that just as nature abhors a vacuum, so too does society’s established politics, which after all are part of nature and the humans who operate within it. Thus the vacuum will be filled with a new paradigm, a new coalition of American voters. We believe this new coalition will be comprised of patriot conservatives, libertarians, and disgusted independents, bolstered by millions of blue-collar Democrats who will permanently depart from their traditional home on the left.
This epochal migration will make life unbearable for the old guard Republicans – the Bush-Dole-McCain-Romneyized mindset. They will find themselves without a home and will gradually over the next decade slide over to the Democrat Party. It will be done without a lot of fanfare, but it will be done because the Party of Liberalism is what this mindset is truly about and has been about for over 50 years. But the Democrat party will hemorrhage even larger numbers of defectors who will slide over to the new Republican Party, and herein lies the revolution.
The issues fanning this revolt are numerous, but the primary catalyst is “open borders” and the perfidy of Washington’s egregious toleration of illegal immigration. The blue-collar Democrats who have always cast their vote with the party of FDR out of loyalty to their parentage will never again vote so uncritically. It has finally dawned on them that their party leaders care more for ideology than jobs, more for multiculturalism than patriotism, more for power than principle. This realization will drive massive numbers of these disenchanted Democrats into the “new Republican Party” that Donald Trump tells his followers he will fashion should he win the presidency.
The new Republican Party, unlike the present pretender, will be a party of low taxes and freedom, sanity and productivity, military strength and peace. It will be a party that begins the long return to what the Founders intended this country to be. It will be a party of the past in principle and a party of the future in hope. It will transcend what the administration of Ronald Reagan brought about (and then lost so quickly) because this time the crisis of the country has reached earthquake proportions where it was only a series of tremors in 1980. Thus the voters are quite a bit more steely eyed this time around.
A Modern Day Cyclops
The minions and millennials of the odious Clinton camp are about to be blindsided. The reverential legacy of FDR that they love so dearly has turned into a monster. Americans no longer believe the Federal Government is their friend. They see it for what it truly is – a beast, a modern-day Cyclops with one eye and a stunted brain, grunting and belching, taxing and spending, transforming a once productive marvel and manufacturing leader of the world into a decadent debtor nation hell-bent to follow Rome into the dustbin of history.
Huge numbers of Americans now grasp this. They may not be able to verbalize their realization of it, but they realize it on a subconscious level. And they have picked up their pitchforks to march for Trump because, unlike the craven RINOs of Washington, he is willing to touch the third rails of politics in unequivocal language. He shows no fear of the morbid disease of political correctness that has obliterated our splendid culture of unity in a swamp of guilt and conformity.
The Republican Party establishment, though refined and elegant on surface, functions like a ruthless Mafia gang. What’s worse it is aged and stilted, no longer capable of facing reality and forging a charismatic vision for the future. It has aped the liberal vision for so long that it has lost its ability to think for itself, to challenge the ever-present perils of life and fashion a philosophy of freedom that represents the meaning of America. Consequently it has lost its reason for being and is ripe for revolution.
The paramount question is this: Is Donald Trump a bold, visionary patriot who will lead the Republican Party back to what the Founding Fathers commissioned the American people for? Or is he a modern-day Cleon, the warrior-statesman of ancient Greece who rose to power with rough and bombastic demagoguery rather than wise and prudent policies. The free-market conservative mind like myself believes the former, of course. But human nature and politics are strange bedfellows. Massive crises await us just over the horizon. Will these uncertainties dominate, or will Trump’s better instincts prevail? Stay tuned. The upcoming years are going to be tumultuous.
Nelson Hultberg is a freelance writer in Dallas, Texas and the Director of Americans for a Free Republic www.afr.org. A graduate of Beloit College in Wisconsin, his articles have appeared in such publications as The American Conservative, Insight, Liberty, The Freeman, The Social Critic, The Dallas Morning News, and the San Antonio Express-News, as well as on numerous Internet sites.
He is the author of The Golden Mean: Libertarian Politics, Conservative Values
Email: NelsonHultberg (at) afr.org