Andrew Klavan talks a lot in this essay about how the “right” needs to adjust and handle strategy after losing to Obama this week. Of course, mention of “right” immediately begs the question of where classical liberals/libertarians – that I consider to be progressive in the best sense of that misused word – stand. Despite such caveats, this is an interesting essay to read over a coffee. (I disagree with him on religion.)
For me, one thing about this election is clear, and the same applies to Europe. We now have so many people dependent, in whole or part, on state welfare (not just the poor, I am talking about a whole clutch of vested interest groups ranging from farmers to defence contractors to recipients of subsidies and soft loans) that there are not enough people who can see their self interest to vote for small government to swing an election. But this is hardly a new problem. Back in the 70s, Margaret Thatcher and her colleagues such as Nigel Lawson and Sir Keith Joseph were talking about the “ratchet effect” of socialism and big government. And policies such as sales of public housing and privatisation were, in a way, attempts to create a new bloc of voters who favoured free enterprise, property ownership, and the like. The trick for opponents of Big Government on both sides of the Atlantic is to do the same again.