I keep running into people who are insist on only voting for the “perfect” candidate. “The lesser of two evils is still evil” is a common watchcry and that doing so is simply a somewhat slower slide into tyranny.
The flip side is that voting for the “perfect” (from my perspective–I expect yours would be somewhat different) candidate when that candidate can’t even get the support of 2% of the voters is a quicker slide into tyranny.
I like the metaphor that Neil Gaiman used for his career. It’s like a mountain in the distance. And as long as I can keep moving toward that mountain I’ll eventually get there. Don’t try to do it all at once. That will fail.
By this chart (let’s see if this works)–
–I’m a pretty much a Paelo-Conservative/Classical Liberal. Some infrastructure things (roads on the chart) I think are appropriate for government, others not. On the flip side I’m of mixed feelings about education so between them I figure it’s pretty much a wash and the “Paleo-Conservative” label fits fairly well. Add in that with “health care” and that things like with infectious diseases other folks actions, or inaction, threaten me and it gets a bit complicated. But still, Paleo-Conservative is probably pretty close.
But look at where we are now. We’re so far from that “goal” that the Hubble couldn’t see it. If I had a true Paleo-Conservative candidate to run for office, it’s extremely unlikely he could win (even in a fair election, never mind when the other side(s) cheats). And if, by some miracle, he (or she) did win, there is simply no way I’d get a paleo-conservative Congress to go along.
But I might get somebody a little bit closer than we are now. And if I can get that, then the next cycle, maybe I can get somebody a little bit closer than that. And a little bit closer the next time. And the same shifting “Overton Window” works here. As government becomes less intrusive, less restrictive, less all-encompassing, why people can get used to that too, just as they have motion the other way.
People tell me “compromise doesn’t work.” Actually, the cases they site are excellent examples of how very well it does work. It’s just that it’s been a weapon used against us. Conservative/libertarian types are like folk sticking to single shot rifles to “not waste ammo” while the other side has been using repeating rifles and machine guns. Win small concessions, then use that new position as a springboard to win more. Repeat until you’re where you want to be. It’s a tactic that works. So far, it’s worked for our enemies. Maybe it’s time for it to work for us.
So look at that mountain. What can we get that moves us closer to the mountain, even if only a little bit? Get it. And then keep the pressure on.
The mills of the gods grind slowly, but exceedingly fine.