Grand New Party Part Deux

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Ross Douthat, senior editor at the Atlantic Magazine, and Reihan Salam, associate editor at the Atlantic and senior editor at New America, discuss their book Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream.


Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam

Comments [33]


The new issue of Harper's has a funny article on how the GOP tanked the economy. I think it's by the "What's the Matter with Kansas?" author.

Jul. 22 2008 11:39 AM
Brenda from Brooklyn

[25] is mostly correct. I believe the welfare system needs to be dissolved slowly over time, with basically just SS as an insurance policy (by Obama wanting to turn it into a welfare program by raising caps and limiting peoples access will lead to its ultimate doom, the reason for its success was that it was an insurance policy that everyone paid into and collected from - same problem with the privatization people who never itake into account the variability of the length of peoples lives).
Public welfare should be something temporary otherwise it does no one any benefits in the long run... it just creates a dependent population and promotes mediocrity. I know this won't go over well in this almost completely liberal audience, but so be it.

Jul. 22 2008 11:36 AM

KC is right. And these are the guys David Brooks is now stuck with hawking as "the best new voices" in the conservative movement. It's like being stuck with insisting that diarrhea is the best new voice in the bowel movement. These poor shmoes are out of ideas. And excuses. But you have to give them credit - they are new blood. After that, nothing.

Jul. 22 2008 11:35 AM
hjs from 11211

conservatism doesnot add up that's why the GOP left the path. voters won't buy that 'great old pig' no mo

Jul. 22 2008 11:35 AM
SuzanneNYC from Upper West Side

Two more fast-talking neo cons to add to our collection. If they can cram enough half-baked ideas into their 500 mile/hour monologs, maybe we won't hear what they're saying. Or remember enough to actually give it some thought.

Jul. 22 2008 11:34 AM
jaynab rose from norwalk, ct

Much of the crime issues of the 60's and 70's that the republicans campaigned to change were crimes of economics by those minorities and poor peoples who were negatively effected by much of Republican policy. Which came first? Couldn't one say that this is a brilliant strategy for maintaining political power.

Jul. 22 2008 11:33 AM

the repub(gnant) party did it's job-- slavery is over. beyond that the party has long outlived its usefulness. their quasi-fascist fiefdom state of gov't-business collusion to drain all the capital from the working class to the management/owner class has rapidly disemboweled the strengths of our country-- an educated, upwardly mobile middle class.

Starving the public schools, privatizing access to higher education (funding) and health care, these two steps alone have, practically, economically enslaved both the parents & students graduating college.

the gop over-riding policy of ignoring facts and sticking to ideologically-driven legislation has lead us to a crumbling infrastructure, constantly closing hospitals, several recessions, loss of manufacturing, unbelievable personal and national debt, the list goes on.

The democrats are almost as bad because they don't stand up to the gop, they assist them & allow them to get away with these policies-- either because they are getting money from the same place or to allow the policies to blow up in their faces. Either way, it's bad for our country.

I'm all for the death of the gop. perhaps something better will rise from the ashes. Maybe we should all join the gop and go to the local meetings and seriously set this party on a better path!

Jul. 22 2008 11:32 AM
Liv from Manhattan

I really like your post RC @1

I agree and have never understood why those who support the GOP do so because they claim to despise Big Government.

Jul. 22 2008 11:32 AM
Voter from Brooklyn

I’d like to believe that HJS but even in this interview (as well as the way McCain speaks) government is the “boogie man” in need of constant reform instead of what’s really needed… repair.
I smell another public/private partnership coming. Let’s throw some money at for-profits and GOP friendly churches, they’ll defend us from the free market and people telling us how to run our personal lives.

Jul. 22 2008 11:31 AM
erick from Rochester, NY

Whatever happened to Goldwater conservatism? The fact that conservatives have wandered off Goldwater's path is why Republicans are defecting from the party.

Jul. 22 2008 11:28 AM
KC from NYC

If you say outrageous stuff in a calm enough voice, nobody calls you on it.

Jul. 22 2008 11:28 AM
Michael from Brooklyn, NY

A weak effort to rebrand what is an inherint bias on the part of conservatives for laissez faire economic organization. The state, in that view, is an impediment, not a partner, for achieving that kind social-political organization. The best way to dupe the working class and the poor is to convince them that their interests are aligned with the wealthy and powerful, when in fact, they are at odds with one another. These guys offer a shallow analysis, as does David Brooks, of the circumstances afflicting not only the working class but our dwindling middle class.

Jul. 22 2008 11:27 AM
Shari from Arizona

Means testing for the poor is soooo difficult. Much easier to give the welfare to the rich??? Why means test for welfare if it is the rich that get it.

Jul. 22 2008 11:27 AM
MoNYC from Sunnyside

Thank you BL!

Jul. 22 2008 11:27 AM
Bill from New York

The more cohesive families of the 50s were also more frequently single-income families. If broken families are disadvantaged today it's because it takes two incomes to maintain a household where before it took one. It may well be (does anyone ever talk about this?) that the introduction of women to the workforce has lowered wages by raising supply, but that's also reflective of a desire for independence and self-sufficiency in today's society that the good old days that this broken family crowing hearkens back to is completely out of step with.

Jul. 22 2008 11:27 AM

I have to second comments #1 and Paulo. I've heard these guys speak before and thought "wow, I guess I'm just not getting it", but Paulo kind of nailed it. There is nothing to get. They are offering NOTHING. I know it's a waste of pity, but I feel sorry for the GOP. In the same way I feel badly for Britney Spears. I know it's wrong, but they're just so... messed up.

Jul. 22 2008 11:27 AM
Steve (the other one) from Manhattan

Let's see what 8 years of GOP rule has gotten us, shall we? Heaps of dead soldiers and other people. Near five dollar a gallon gas. Ridiculously expensive health insurance. Trillions of dollars in debt. A broken military. A much more deeply divided country. The injection of religion into places it doesn't belong. A federal bench that seethes with contempt for the very people it is supposed to serve. Government agencies unable to perform their functions. And the economy is in the toilet.

Four more wars! Four more wars!

Jul. 22 2008 11:25 AM
aaron from nyc

No other industrialized country in the world has a "free market" approach to health care, and nearly every one of those countries ranks far above the US in critical health indicators like infant mortality and longevity, diabetes, obesity etc, and spend far less. Why do conservatives (including these ones) persist in claiming that a free market model is the way to go, both from a cost, and outcomes perspective?

Jul. 22 2008 11:25 AM
O from Forest Hills

#14, listen to Air America after this show and you will find Thom Hartmann gets it, they "expose the con in conservative."

Jul. 22 2008 11:25 AM
MoNYC from Sunnyside

I wish BL would read your comments to the guests and ask them about it. As it stands they're being given a free unchallenged pass!

Jul. 22 2008 11:24 AM
Workers of the World from Brooklyn

That nauseous feeling that you have when listening to conservatives that constantly pat themselves on the back for "successes" like welfare reform is not from the cheap junk food that you were forced to eat for breakfast (because you couldn't afford fruit.) It is because the lies are so intricately weaved into the language of people like this that it is an affront to the consciousness of the listener. Conservatives in this country just DON'T GET IT.

Jul. 22 2008 11:22 AM
hjs from 11211

the market is failing that will help to change several minds...

Jul. 22 2008 11:21 AM
KC from NYC

Unfortunately, as soon as any pundit says "Americans are generally happy with the way our healthcare system works", he loses all credibility, and everything he says thereafter is suspect. That's simply not true, and only elitists think it is.

Jul. 22 2008 11:21 AM
O from Forest Hills

What nice balony piled high and dry.

Jul. 22 2008 11:20 AM
Fred from Brooklyn

The "conservative" welfare state is nothing new. And the allusion to Bismarck is, of course, accurate. It is important to note where the Bismarckian conservative welfare state lead. Conservative, or more accurately, paternalist, versions of welfare generally tend toward exclusionary images of welfare that often amount to a sort of "taking care of our own mentality." A review of Mark Mazower's account of Nazi welfare policies in his history of Europe's twentieth century, "The Dark Continent" is instructive. The successful social welfare regimes that are supportive of the working class more often derived out of labor-based political parties. The Scandinavian examples are the classics of the field.

I recommend that these authors go back and read a bit more about the history of social welfare and social policy.

This welfare history.

Jul. 22 2008 11:19 AM
Nick from Austin

He seems to be making a false causation argument when it should be a correlation argument about family breakdown and economic situation. Anyone who's been in hard times knows that financial hardship is one of the biggest stressors on a relationship.

Jul. 22 2008 11:18 AM
Voter from Brooklyn

Excellent comment #1; that will probably the best comment of the week. However, there is one aspect of all of this you’ve left out. It will be difficult for any Republican run government to get Americans whom support them to trust government again. The party attempted to show that the free market was the best way by deliberately underfunding or mismanaging public programs. And after thirty years or so of horribly mismanaging government programs and leading a very successful campaign to make any program designed to benefit the people an entitlement on par with abortion and gay marriage, hearts and minds won’t be changed easily.

Jul. 22 2008 11:15 AM
Paulo from Paterson, New Jersey

This essentially combines the worst ideas of the Republican Party and merges it with the worst ideas of the Democratic Party. It ensures the meddling of the government in people's personal as well as economic lives. What will we have left then?

Jul. 22 2008 11:15 AM
hjs from 11211

conservative welfare state? is that new what about corporate welfare? what about all the 'red' states that get money from blues states via the fed government?

Jul. 22 2008 11:10 AM
Paulo from Paterson, New Jersey

This vision sounds like hell...

Jul. 22 2008 11:10 AM

yeah, we've had a 'conservative welfare state" for the past 7 years. welfare for corporations and the rich!! and especially friends of W.

Jul. 22 2008 11:08 AM
hjs from 11211

time for the realignment. several parts of the country are becoming one party states.

ps in europe the main right wing is to the left of some 'american' democrats.

Jul. 22 2008 11:05 AM
RC from Queens

What is happening is that the white guy who the GOP could count on (the Archie Bunkers of this world), who was conned by the GOP into thinking that most Democratic policies would help minorities, women and immigrants AT HIS expense, is now waking up and now realizing that it was the GOP policies that are the real detriment to him.

What he has seen is crony capitalism by the GOP. He has seen hypocrisy, with a party that preaches a free market as is if it is some natural law in physics that can't be tampered with so that when he falls on his face, it is part of the "vagaries of the free market." Fine, but then he sees corporations bailed out the government and the very tight relationship that exists with members of government and corporations.

All I see with the GOP is corporate government collusion.

Jul. 22 2008 10:58 AM

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