Whole Foods Republicans
The GOP needs to enlist voters who embrace a progressive lifestyle but not progressive politics.
December 14, 2009
By MICHAEL J. PETRILLI
The Republican Party is resurgent—or so goes the conventional wisdom. With its gubernatorial victories in Virginia and New Jersey, an energized "tea party" base, and an administration overreaching on health care, climate change and spending, 2010 could shape up to be 1994 all over again.
Maybe. The political landscape sure looks greener than it did a year ago, when talk of a permanent Democratic majority was omnipresent. But before John Boehner starts measuring the drapes in the Speaker's office, or the party exults about its possibilities in 2012, it's worth noting that some of the key trends driving President Barack Obama's strong victory in 2008 haven't disappeared. Republicans need to address them head-on if they want to lead a majority party again.
There are the depressing numbers on young voters (two-thirds of whom voted for Mr. Obama), African-Americans and Latinos (95% and 67% went blue respectively). But these groups have voted Democratic for decades, and their strong turnout in 2008's historic election wasn't replicated this fall, nor is it likely to be replicated again.
The voting patterns of the college-educated is another story. This is a group that, slowly but surely, is growing larger every year. About 30% of Americans 25 and older have at least a bachelor's degree; in 1988 that number was only 20% and in 1968 it was 10%. (Bold font added by me, for emphasis)
As less-educated seniors pass away and better-educated 20- and 30-somethings take their place in the electorate, this bloc will exert growing influence. And here's the distressing news for the GOP: According to exit-poll data, a majority of college-educated voters (53%) pulled the lever for Mr. Obama in 2008—the first time a Democratic candidate has won this key segment since the 1970s.
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Intellectual curiosity and the rigors of an intellectual college education are enthralling and heady, but let's not forget that 98 percent of college faculty are biased politically, verified by their political donations to political candidates. Those who seek an unbiased education may have to resort to attending an online college that emphasizes personal research and offers more self directed classes. Political Correctness now institutionalized in our main steam media,K-12 education and Hollywood, has been deeply entrenched and de rigueur for much longer, at the college level.
Many of the best ideas and discoveries that have left a revolutionary mark on the quality of life of the average American, from computer technology to medicine to transportation and communication have been thanks to the tinkerers, the rebels that didn't fit into the college dogma structure and who dropped out of college or skipped it altogether, to pursue their dreams and inventions, including Bill Gates, Rush Limbaugh, Steve Jobs, Hubert Selby, off the top of my head. There are countless examples.
Discipline and training in reading, critiquing, analyzing, math and science research and verifying are skills that if done with integrity are very useful and constructive.
Advocates, proponents and defenders of free market capitalism, individual liberties, rule of law, and limited government that doesn't control one's life, are vilified and their descent suppressed in the majority of our Colleges and Universities. Dissenters are treated as agitators and often accused of being intolerant, uncaring, and insensitive.
I appreciate Michael Petrilli's article here, for pointing out the significance of the college graduate voter as a challenge before all little 'r' republicans, united by their core values for common sense, laissez-faire economic policies, individual liberties and limited government.
We cannot write off this group. I'm a reformed leftist college graduate who bought into the paradigm of the U.S. Imperialist power and Capitalism being the root of all the injustice and evil in the world, and it was connections I made between the issues and concerns in my adult life, affecting my family, my children, and their future, and the ideas I heard on a burgeoning talk radio industry and the op-eds of my WSJ Newspaper that caused for me to begin to question and finally shift away from my old paradigm. I used to be an UTNE Reader. I became a leftist in college. I understood that the hopes, dreams and will of my professors in the English, Political Science, History, and Sociology Departments, were to bring down our system of government from within, because they knew that the American people would never embrace their leftist fantasy for an armed revolution to overtly over throw their own Government. I was a good student and earned high marks for my arguments and analysis.
Early on in my transformation, I wanted to call Rush Limbaugh to argue with him, and against what the main steam media said he stood for and advocated, but to bring integrity to the battle, I challenged myself to know my subject first hand, to hear his words for myself. So I listened. That was the beginning of my transformation. My change didn't happen over night, and giving up being part of the majority of my fellow college educated contemporaries was frustrating and still is. I shop at my local Whole Foods like market. In our prior house, when we had a big yard, I composted. I had my second baby at home and nursed both of them. I used cloth diapers and didn't use a service. I stayed home. I still care about the same issues I cared about as a leftist liberal. My realization and actualization was in that Big Government is not the answer. Limited Government is the narrow and challenging but liberating road.
We have to address the college graduates to prevail. Our calling is to connect with them, and inspire them by showing how our values and policies are empowering of their desire to make a difference and have a purpose, and be good stewards, responsibly, with integrity and transparency.
Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"
"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern." —Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006. An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko. What does this map mean? How to use this map View Original Map and Database
The proliferation of SWAT teams, police militarization, and the Drug War have given rise to a dramatic increase in the number of "no-knock" or "quick-knock" raids on suspected drug offenders. Because these raids are often conducted based on tips from notoriously unreliable confidential informants, police sometimes conduct SWAT-style raids on the wrong home, or on the homes of nonviolent, misdemeanor drug users. Such highly-volatile, overly confrontational tactics are bad enough when no one is hurt -- it's difficult to imagine the terror an innocent suspect or family faces when a SWAT team mistakenly breaks down their door in the middle of the night.
But even more disturbing are the number of times such "wrong door" raids unnecessarily lead to the injury or death of suspects, bystanders, and police officers. Defenders of SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics say such incidents are isolated and rare. The map above aims to refute that notion.
|Death of an innocent.||Death or injury of a police officer.||Death of a nonviolent offender.|
|Raid on an innocent suspect.||Other examples of paramilitary police excess.||Unnecessary raids on doctors and sick people.|
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