The Dillard Doctrine

Urban Conservative Commentary on Politics & Life

Memo to the RNC and Fellow Conservatives

So we didn’t win. McCain didn’t carry Virginia. The GOP didn’t pick up our open Senate seat (but, let’s be real, that was expected). And my local representative lost her race…as did a few others across the Commonwealth.

So, what does this mean for the country’s future…and that of the conservative movement in America?

Now that the rhetoric has stopped, most of Obama’s detractors should begin to realize that the country we know and love will not cease to exist just because of his election. America is still the greatest and strongest nation on earth-maybe even more so because of the Obama ascendancy. We have shown the world that no matter what someone’s background is, we can all succeed if we have the will and drive to do so. “I can’t do it just because I’m (insert limiter here)” is no longer a viable excuse. Yes, you can.

One of the greatest things I find in conservatism is the ability to experience success and failure by your own doing. We, as Republicans and conservatives, have gone from the peaks of power to its depths in only eight years.  Can we recover? Yes. But the change will be violent and bloody…and all of the current conservative “icons” may not survive the purge that needs to happen.

We’ve got to figure out who the hell we are again. We were swept into office on a message of fiscal restraint, smaller government, and common sense in national security/foreign policy.

Yes, 9/11 happened. And our nation was forever changed on that day.

But, let’s be honest with ourselves: after 9/11, what we became as a movement, as a party-is a direct contradiction to what our beliefs are supposed to be. In our current form, we are the embodiment of everything we should stand against.

And, for those of you who missed it, the American people all but completely rejected us last night.

So…instead of bemoaning the “death of America” under Obama, can we get to fixing what’s wrong with us?

In his treatise The Art of War, Sun Tzu said:

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.  If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will    succumb in every battle.

In 2000, we knew the enemy and ourselves. In 2004, we knew ourselves, but didn’t completely understand our enemies.

In 2008, we didn’t know the enemy. Or ourselves.

This is Day One. We start here.

And…yes, we can, too.




Written by Coby Dillard

November 5, 2008 at 10:55 am

3 Responses

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  1. Because you disagreed with me at my house, I’ll return the favor. I don’t think the American people voted against “us” per se, as much as they voted against what they perceived was a mismanagement of the economy without the benefit of all of the information. We saw in the 2004 election, they didn’t care much about the mishandling of the war, but the combined higher gas prices and the bank meltdown affected everyone personally within a few months of the election. Alot of people are going to declare conservatism dead in the next few years, but conservatism wasn’t even a part of the election this year.

    D. See, I steal all my ideas from your blog 🙂 I don’t think we’re “dead;” a more accurate description might be the character in Invictus; unbowed, but bloodied. Conservatism got the blame for everything that’s gone wrong over the last eight years, and while that blame isn’t (completely) deserved, it’s what we have to shake.

    Jonn Lilyea

    November 5, 2008 at 11:45 am

  2. Hi D,

    Had my screen name highjacked at JJP but did respond there to Obama’s win (under the name – the original s)

    I agree with you. Every. Word.

    Especially, “the ability to experience success and failure by your own doing.”

    Freedom. Opportunity. Optimism. American Exceptionalism.

    Obama and the Democrats hold a great deal of power now, and I pray that Obama will prove himself to be the bi-partisan pragmatist who will stand up to the far left wing of his party.

    How tragic, if so many were to end up feeling ‘hoodwinked.’


    November 5, 2008 at 12:08 pm

  3. True and righteious conservatives were not beaten. Those extreme conservatives were beaten. Youre right in your reference to The Art Of War, that we must know ourselves and our enemy. But the enemy is not other Americans. Americans, who exercised their right to vote, spoke out against the radical concepts and practices that have become common practice within the GOP (including you D). Dont get me wrong, I agree with you and those conservatives who think like you on many issues. The GOP’s leaders killed the party. Those who Republicans have put in office. Those who took advantage of 9/11 and created legislature to benefit their own and not the people.

    The “us vs. them” approach wont get our country to the next level. Using word association, subliminal voter suppression and focusing on the extreme left’s possible outcomes did not work and wont as the GOP rebuilds. Thats evident within, I hope at least. But like the GOP candidate said, we have to work with our new president for the good of all Americans, not just to put the GOP back in power. Americans had forgotten that our politicians work for us, we are the boss. Americans got their voice back.

    I do agree that your party must replace the old guard with more progressive and open minded leaders. More pre-campaign McCains. Actually, I saw the McCain Ive always respected for the first time in months during his concession speech. The McCain that knows that we will remain stagnant without reaching across the aisle. Most Americans are just tired of the perception of the GOP due to the leaders of the last 8 years. Hell, his speech on Tues confirmed what I had presumed, the GOP strategists forced him to run the campaign they wanted.

    Yes the GOP needs new leadership and progressive thinking for the present times. But right now, as a people, our top priority has to be working to successfully transistion to our new leader and address the immediate pressing issues. That takes ALL parties involvement. I disagree with Michelle Malkin (sorry I gotta take a jab at her…UNCLE TOM!) as she states on her blog that Republicans need to oppose everything Pres.-elect Obama (I still cant believe I am saying that!) introduces. That will get America nowhere. Our direction as a country has to focus on us, not party loyalty.

    D, I hope to see you run one day. Conservatism needs leaders like you. I have decided to run for mayor in Greenbelt in the next few years (if my wife approves of course…she scared of the GOP dragging us thru the mud as we’ve consistently seen in the past). But, regardless of party, America needs leaders that have basic common sense, recognizing right from wrong.

    Now I do have to address S’s comment: WHAT?! In 2004 who wasnt upset about the War??? Lord knows, that was a hot topic then. But as Americans, we know the old adage “you got yourself in this mess, get yourself out”. That and the other option wasnt much better than what we already had. The mismanagement of this war proved that Cheaney ran the country with self serving intent. EXTREME and RADICAL CONSERVATISM was a major part of this years election. We, Americans not Dems or Repubs, are tired of it. Hence, the landslide. And I love Invictus, but apply that line to Americans overall and not just the GOP.

    Yes we can. Yes we will. And oh yeah….yes we did.

    Darth Medius

    November 6, 2008 at 7:59 am

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