Thursday, November 8, 2012

Thoughts From a Happy Warrior

Ronald Reagan
The original "Happy Warrior"
It has been 48 hours since the polls closed and I am still processing, going through a range of emotions from frustration to despair to anger to hope.

I have been trying to sort out what happened and why. The pollsters, pundits and analysts will figure it all out for us, eventually.

Rather than spend too much energy trying to figure out how this all happened, I prefer to reflect on what we believe and how we should apply those beliefs to the battles ahead.

Thomas Jefferson said, “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” It’s true, our liberty has been slipping away little by little over the last 100 years. We have had periods of respite from that creeping socialism, (Ronald Reagan), and there have been times when socialism was advancing at a full gallop. Today is one of those times.

But, I refuse to write off the United States or give up on the future. It looks pretty grim, but we must not lose heart. We must “cling” to those timeless truths, the eternal values, the core principles that we know are right. Truth never changes. The principles of limited government, rule of law, individual liberty, don’t change; they don’t come and go based on current circumstances.

What will it take for America to see conservative leadership again?

First, we need to remember that the things we believe are true and should not be compromised or given up on. Second, we need to not only know and believe these truths, but we need to understand why they are right. Third, we need to learn how to articulate these truths to others so as to convince them that what we believe is right and what they believe is wrong. Fourth, we need leaders who can convey these messages without compromise and in a positive, winning manner.

Sounds a lot like Ronald Reagan, doesn’t it? Reagan was successful because he knew what he believed, never changed or compromised on his beliefs, knew why he believed them and was able to articulate them in a convincing, positive, and often, humorous way.

If we truly believe in limited government, low taxes, individual liberty, the rule of law, private property and the right to protect it, then we also believe it is what’s best for all Americans, rich and poor.

Can we convince the 47% that they are better off in a free America where the individual is sovereign and where government is not the provider of their next meal, their college education, the roof over their heads and their Obama phone?
If we cannot convince them, we are doomed to an America that will become further divided, increasingly socialistic and ultimately bankrupt, financially and spiritually. Let’s not allow that to happen.

Let us, “with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, mutually pledge” to each other our resolve to hold firmly to the principles of limited government, individual liberty, and the rule of law. After all, we’re conservatives, aren’t we?

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