Conservative politics has become less about governing and presenting ideas, and has moved to becoming a long scam designed to take money from their base. As someone who spent their childhood involved in conservative politics and became a liberal as an adult, I’ve watched it become more and more about money.
I’m not the only one who has noticed this. Earlier this year, my friend Erin Nanasi wrote an article about this phenomenon. Vox’s Matthew Yglesias also made this same point about Dr. Ben Carson’s presidential campaign back on Friday.
Even Ben Carson’s presidential campaign has something of this air about it. Carson is currently in second place in national polls and leading in Iowa. His campaign is raising tons of money from small donors and is spending most of that money on fundraising. People are giving Carson money so that he’ll have the money to ask more people for money. It’s a form of pyramid scheme. There’s no real field operation, policy staff, or any other manifestation of the kind of campaign apparatus that could plausibly result in victory. (Source)
It’s not just Dr. Ben Carson, conservative politics is full of marketing scams. Whether it’s groups claiming to be associated with the Tea Party or pages like Being Conservative, there’s a ton of money to be made in partisan bickering – and liberals aren’t immune from this either.
The best example of all of this is represented by none other than Donald Trump. Although he has now slipped into second place in the Iowa polls behind fellow conservative snake oil salesman Dr. Ben Carson, the success of both candidates shows that conservative politics has become a laughingstock since the Tea Party took over in 2010.
Not only has the Republican Party run so far to the fringe that Reagan would be considered a flaming liberal by today’s standards, but it also resembles reality TV where outrageous behavior gets you talked about – and nobody does it better than Donald Trump.
Even when conservative politicians are in Washington, they’re usually busy running political hit jobs like the Benghazi hearings which end up blowing up in their faces. However, to their most loyal supporters and donors, they’re still seen as winning. While the most right-wing members of the House stabbed Speaker Boehner in the back politically and then torpedoed his replacement, throwing their own party into turmoil, they were using the opportunity to pull the GOP even further to the fringe.
This dysfunction and ouster of a senior party leader would be an embarrassment to most political parties, but their base loved it and claimed that Speaker Boehner was a poor leader – because he couldn’t deliver on all the promises the GOP hucksters have made since 2010. One of the biggest promises Republican lawmakers have run on is repealing Obamacare, even though they have no chance of doing that as long as a Democrat is in the White House.
These lawmakers know their countless repeal attempts won’t work, but they also know that the people who voted for them are too gullible to know the difference. Donald Trump is running to boost his public image, and Dr. Ben Carson is running to promote his book. Once they’ve sucked enough PR and money out of the base, they’ll drop out, blame the Republican establishment – and their supporters will never realize that they’ve been conned once again.
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