In the quiet happiness that post-liberals, conservatives, libertarians and whatever have in this last election, I think it is important to say discouraging words to all of you. We are not ever going to win and get things our way. I am in discussion - no, actually, I have just gotten out of a discussion - with people who are very proud of the fact that they didn't vote for Scott Brown (because he's a squish on 2A rights), I guess by golly they showed THEM, didn't they! They've somehow got it worked in their heads that they won, because real conservatives won in other states, and they kicked this center-right bastard to the curb here in NH. Which means that...well, I don't know what they think it means. Perhaps they think that it means that next time the NHGOP will only dare run a real conservative. Because they showed 'em.
And this happens every time. Republicans have a slight majority in the Senate, probably brief, on the basis of general frustration with Obama and key Democrats. I know nothing of all the strategic advice of whether McConnell and Boehner should negotiate, demand, delay, placate, or persuade. Other people have better instincts for that sort of thing than I do. But I think it doesn't much matter. Conservatives shooting themselves in the foot because they are offended that someone isn't with them enough, isn't our sort or real foxhole guy, has been going on as long as I have been interested in their internal workings - maybe 30 years. It's not going to stop. The country will continue to get more liberal, sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly, and our children and grandchildren will live in a different country than we do.
Perhaps it will be for the best. Perhaps the right is wrong, and we'll all be happier with increasingly leftist culture. Or perhaps it will all collapse for financial reasons, resulting in some unpredictable new world where parts split off, or tyrants rise up, or it all doesn't matter because of technological advances. Roll the dice there.
But a significant subset of conservatives are never going to get it. They are never going to come 'round and be reasonable and accept a center-right coalition. They will vote that out in the next cycle. It is not something they can be persuaded of, it's in their personalities. They cannot do otherwise. Even as the flames lick around the edges of their property they will rejoice in Ragnarok, content that they have fought the good fight and not bowed the knee. To them the political compromises are the same as religious apostasies and deals with the devil.
Added: I recall from 2012 an only discussion with a person who wasn't going to vote for Romney (or perhaps even 2008 and not voting for McCain) and saying over and over "I'm not going to eat a shit sandwich. The Republicans can't make me. My vote is sacred, and I'm not going to eat a shit sandwich.." There was no real discussion happening. No one was talking about making him do anything, of course. But somehow it felt that way to him. I think that is part of it with this type of personality. I imagine there is some equivalent on the left.
It is, as the title suggests, all there in Lewis. (What do they teach them in those schools these days?)