Wednesday, May 24, 2006

How the Conservatives Brought Down Nixon

Concerning my last post, there was a bit in Richard Viguerie's Washington Post essay that encapsulates precisely what I'm talking about. The whole bit is like this, really, but this one part is truly eye-popping:

But unhappy conservatives should be taken seriously. When conservatives are unhappy, bad things happen to the Republican Party. [...]

In 1974, conservatives were unhappy with the corruption and Big Government policies of Nixon's White House and with President Gerald R. Ford's selection of Rockefeller as his vice president, and this led to major Republican losses in the congressional races that year.
Pretty much the whole second page of the essay is like this -- Viguerie goes through every Republican defeat of the last 50 years and blames them all on conservative dissatisfaction. Ignoring the importance of every other political movement over the last half century is exactly the sort of arrogant, self-absorbed attitude that has led conservatives to wrongly believe that they are the keystone of politics. But when he thinks that conservative petulance was more important than Watergate, it's downright delusional.