|Sign at Tea Party rally condemening the bailouts.|
My thesis is that there is a populist movement overtaking our nation's politics, and that the route to renewed majority status in Marion County is for Republicans to embrace it, rather than cling to its establishment past. If Ballard would have governed as a populist rather than as a card carrying elitist, Melina Kennedy would have had no chance to defeat him.
What is populism? "Populism" is defined as a "political philosophy supporting the rights and power of the people in their struggle against the privileged elite." Contrary to what some of my friends on the right thing, populism does not equate to leftist politics. Rather it bridges the divide between political philosophies and political parties.
|Sign at Occupy rally condemning the bailouts.|
The Occupy Wall Street movement is a left-wing movement that arose also because of populist angst for corporate welfare and the aforementioned bailouts. It is easy to dismiss the Occupy crowd as being nothing more than spoiled kids, professing to be engaged in serious social action for the impoverished, while texting their friends using one hundred dollar I-Phones. But those activists are right in their anger toward a government that has acted to alleviate the misdeeds of the corporate elite while not even budging the economy out of its now several years doldrums. People on Main Street are suffering. But the people on Wall Street, the people who led the country into our current economic malaise, the bankers and the corporate elite continue to live the high life, made possible in no small part on the people's inflationary tax dollars.
|Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney|
The power of populism in the GOP is represented by the lid on former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's support. Romney is the quintessential establishment Republican, a person who oozes Wall Street. As the candidate of the elites, Romney has zero appeal to the populist, Main Street wing of the GOP which continues to grow in size and influence. If the Republicans nominate Romney, an anti-populist, President Obama may well win a second term.
Note: Apparently Rasmussen just released a poll saying that Republicans are even harsher critics of the Wall Street bailouts than Democrats. 77% of Republicans say that the bailouts of the banks and other financial institutions were wrong, while only 42% agree. This supports my thesis that there is a strong populist wing of the GOP that would be ignored by a Romney nomination. I'm going to try to publish something on this poll when I get more information.