The Real Political Fringe

The popular consensus among a number of commentators reporting on the US Presidential election has been to warn against giving in to the political fringes. The ‘political fringes’ aren’t exactly defined by these pundits but it is safe to assume that they are any policy areas which disagree with the view of that held by the writer. More often than not they are applied to a conservative perspective on contemporary issues.

Some are concerned that leaning to the right cost the Republican Party the election. But when ordinary citizens, who want less government and lower taxes, are mocked as the ‘political fringe’ or ‘extremists’ we should all be concerned. It suggests that the mockers are more interested in obtaining power and gaining control over the citizenry rather than fixing the legitimate problems associated with the welfare state.

Many of these same commentators have made a great deal of the demographic vote associated with the US results, particularly the patterns of Hispanic and Black voters. That a disproportionate percentage of these two demographics supported Obama is beyond question. They also turned out to vote in strong numbers. The question is: why?

One theory is that Hispanics were upset about the proposed Romney agenda for dealing with illegal immigrants. It seems incredible that a desire to ensure only those legally entitled to stay in the country can do so is somehow on the ‘political fringe’. In respect to Black voters, it has been suggested that many of them considered any criticism of Obama to be racially motivated and thus an attack on themselves.

Further, many of the Democratic supporters were beneficiaries of the largesse of the Obama welfare state which handed out mobile phones, food programs, cash and contraception. Under the Obama administration, welfare costs have risen by nearly 20 per cent to close to $1 trillion annually.

Since President Lyndon B. Johnson launched the War on Poverty in the 1960s, the US has spent three times as much on this war as on any military engagements, yet it continues to lose the battle despite an ever-increasing expanse of entitlements designed to alleviate poverty.

The result has been a spectacular failure and the message is crystal clear; the more people are given for ‘free’, the more they expect as their right.

The unspoken truth that everything you receive for ‘free’ has to be paid for by someone else is of no concern to the recipients. They want a bigger slice of what others have worked for because they have been conditioned to see inequality of outcomes as a systemic failure rather than a personal one.

This is the unpalatable reality of the US federal election. One candidate offered more of the same while the other offered a reality check. Yet it appears that 51 per cent of the people who voted weren’t prepared to confront reality.

A case can be made for a similar circumstance here in Australia. We too have a government that has played the class warfare card in an attempt to revive its fortunes. They have made a virtue of attacking the wealthy and successful. They have borrowed money to launch targeted ‘freebies’, leaving future generations to pick up the tab.

They have steadfastly refused to stop the flow of illegal arrivals and protect our borders, while rewarding the new arrivals with gift packs of whitegoods and welfare. Criticism of such policy failures are characterised as being driven by racism and xenophobia in an attempt to marginalise the dissenters.

And they have played the gender card suggesting that any criticism levelled against the Prime Minister is an attack on women everywhere driven by misogynists.

These are all examples of modern campaigning straight out of the Social Democrats’ political playbook.

Unfortunately, such detestable campaigns have captured the approval of too many within the beltway of opinion makers.

It is no coincidence that many of those who blame the Tea Party for the Republican result are the same people who condemned the Liberal Opposition to political oblivion for standing against Labor’s emissions trading scheme (ETS). Then, as now, it might not have been immediately popular or deemed politically correct but it was the right thing to do.

That’s why the real ‘political fringe’ are the vocal minority who condemn the reality check of those seeking smaller government, lower taxes, effective policy and the maintenance of our customs and social norms.

For the future of our country, I think we would indeed be wise to ignore them.

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