OLD WINE IN OLD BOTTLES
I've been reading a lot of whither-the-Republicans? articles, like this one in Salon, and I keep running into one argument in particular that makes even less sense than most GOP arguments:
Among younger Republicans, many of whom complained that the party is out of touch with the country's emerging demography and new technologies, there is a sense that the party needs to change itself before it begins thinking about retaking power. "Republicans -- especially young Republicans -- are craving new ideas," said Rachel Hoff, 26, of the Young Republican National Federation. "We are craving pragmatic solutions to the real-world problems we face. We demand accountability, transparency and results from our leaders. We hold to the foundational principles of the conservative movement -- limited government, individual freedom and personal responsibility -- but recognize the need to appropriate those principles into modern, 21st century solutions."
Here's the problem, Rachel: what you call "the foundational principles," i.e., "limited government, individual freedom and personal responsibility," are all just euphemisms for "tax cuts" (with unspecified, and inevitably unpopular, cuts in government programs to be named later). Apart from demanding the occasional war so that Democrats can be painted as big commies if they don't fall into line, tax cuts are pretty much all you guys have got. So when a new economic crisis comes along, you're simply not going to have any "new ideas" -- all you're going to have are the same damn ideas you always have. What can you guys suggest that's "new"? Delivering the next tax cut via Twitter feed?