Yesterday, I came across an interesting article which attempts to explain why many Republican voters seem to consistently vote against their own interests, thereby supporting a political party which works exclusively for the rich and throws everybody else under the bus, including these voters. For an example the article points at Trump’s war on our healthcare coupled with continuing loyalty to him.
Of course, I would add to this that, while the “Democratic” Party rejoined this corruption feast much later (after a decades-long interruption known as the New Deal and Great Society), it also works only for the rich nowadays, and has been doing it for no less than thirty years. So, both major parties screw us royally, and both seem impervious to reform.
The interesting theory the article puts forth is that Republican Voters don’t vote so much for solutions to problems as for authoritarian political personalities whom a gut feeling elevates to a level of trust because these voters were raised in patriarchal households where a “strict father” is the moral authority. The strict father is believed by every family member to ensure their survival through deciding the way things are done (presumably assuming that father knows best) and enforcing his way violently if necessary — no analysis, no arguments, no thinking, just pure authority accompanied by posture and stance. In essence, these voters vote for a “strict daddy” every time since he seems to them trustworthy and morally superior to other candidates. This is their “value voting”.
If this is true, I don’t know. But it sounds like a plausible explanation of why Republican Voters might vote repeatedly for a President who makes war, legalizes torture, and rips away our Bill of Rights; or for a President who turns back the clock on healthcare reform to throw millions off of coverage and give tax breaks to himself and his rich cronies.
On the other hand, I could ask why many Democratic voters seem to do the exact same thing with candidates like Obama and the Clintons, since these political figures are guilty of much the same. My guess is, those voters go to great lengths to look the other way, because they want to believe that in the “Democratic” Party they have an alternative to the known enemy of the GOP. I can only hope that more and more of these “democrats” will wake up, following the millions who already have in the wake of their party’s deplorable behavior in the 2016 election. Naturally, I’d like to carry the same hope for Republican voters.
Anyway this is the referenced article: “Two questions about Trump and Republicans that stump progressives”
And here is a particularly interesting passage from it (Note: the article uses the term conservative for Republican, a faulty tradition I wish we would put behind us):
Why do conservatives love Trump (who harms them) and hate health care (which helps them)? It makes more sense when you consider the conservative moral hierarchy.
The Conservative Moral Hierarchy:
- God above Man
- Man above Nature
- The Disciplined (Strong) above the Undisciplined (Weak)
- The Rich above the Poor
- Employers above Employees
- Adults above Children
- Western culture above other cultures
- America above other countries
- Men above Women
- Whites above Nonwhites
- Christians above non-Christians
- Straights above Gays
- Sound familiar?
By the way, back when I did some political street work, I quickly learned to tell Republican and Democratic voters apart from a great distance. To me, the typical Republican voters revealed themselves through a belligerent body language that seemed to yell across hundreds of feet: “Hands off what’s MINE! Stay of MY land! Keep away from me and my family! Woof! Woof! Grrrr!” In contrast, Democratic voters projected an air of relaxed curiosity about – and openness to – others. They typically welcomed conversation.
This may not mean much any more at a time when we all must come to realize that the Republicans and “Democrats” have become nothing more than the right and left arm of one single corporatist party serving the billionaire class and ruining life, country, and planet for all of us. We need to build people’s movements, a people’s agenda, and new bottom-up, grassroots types of political parties to topple the Dempublican tyranny. To do this, we must become better informed and communicate with one another about our way forward. Hence we must share the articles and videos of citizen journalism, talk about our important societal issues with friends, family, and even strangers, and support alternative media sites like this one.
Let’s rally to take back our country and the world from our soulless overlords. Power to the people!
P.S.: Family traditions are behind much of party loyalty. This goes for both the Republican and the “Democratic” Party. Time to remind everyone that times change, parties change, and our needs are still not met.