Rumors of the Demise of Conservatism are Sorely Exaggerated
Dinner conversation with a group of conservative activist friends could be pretty depressing if I were not, as they jokingly refer to me, an "eternal optimist" -- a badge I wear with honor. My optimism is not a refusal to face reality. My optimism is rooted in 60-something years of life experiences and faith in God. I am idiotic enough to believe God's word when it says "in everything give thanks." Call me crazy, naïve, and silly, but no matter how bad the situation, I look for the blessing.
Realizing that some "smart" people will think this ridiculously optimistic, I have learned that sometimes God gives good gifts in ugly packages. In other words, opportunity often appears disguised as a problem. Maintaining an attitude of gratitude has gotten me through extremely challenging times.
As corny and clichéd as they sound, song lyrics such as "The sun will come out tomorrow" and "What a difference a day makes" are true. On countless occasions, I saw no hope in sight, and the answer to my request was a firm "H--- NO!" The very next day a solution magically appeared, and "no" changed to an enthusiastic "Yes!"
Here is what made our dinner conservation such a downer. In an article, Arbitron data shows that the audience for news/talk radio is mostly white males who are getting older and diminishing in number. Since peaking with a 14.1 national share in 2008, news/talk has been on a steady downward slope. Programming changes are underway.
Someone at dinner said the left is kicking our (conservatives') butts in the world of social networking. Someone else chimed in, declaring that we have no conservative leaders/candidates with the right stuff like Reagan. It was also said that many in the Tea Party appear to have given up the fight, as evidenced by voter fatigue or a sense of hopelessness.
There you have it, folks. This was the gist of our bummer dinner conversation: conservative talk radio is dying, the left rules social networking, no one on our side is good enough to challenge the left, and many on our side have given up.
While these negatives may be true, they are not the end, and I refuse to allow them to bring me down. Things change! For example, who could have predicted that the Obama administration's unprecedented bullying, arrogance, and lawlessness would land it in extremely hot water, juggling three scandals? Who could imagine IRS corruption being the possible source for bringing down ObamaCare?
Alcoholics Anonymous preaches to deal with one day at a time and not to make choices based on negative projections of the future.
I have friends who eagerly predict the most negative outcome in every situation -- as if wearing their instantaneous negativity were a badge of honor. "I knew my wife would leave me." "I knew I would not get the job." "Nothing ever works out for me." In every instance, they were correct.
Several years ago, a wealthy dear friend criticized my wife and me for trusting God. Our friend believed she herself was the ultimate power in her own life. She also had a tendency to embrace the negative. When Mary and I moved to Florida, we lost touch with our friend. A year or so ago, we were shocked and extremely saddened upon hearing that our friend had committed suicide.
When things do not work out, of course it is wise to find out what went wrong and try to fix it and do better next time. I am simply saying do not linger too long in that dark, hopeless place. Look for the blessing -- something for which to be grateful -- and move forward.
I firmly believe that the birth of the Tea Party was divinely orchestrated. Thus, I am trusting God to reveal the next step/phase in our quest to restore individual rights, liberty, and freedom in America.
So yes, I am an eternal optimist who believes that, in the end, right triumphs over wrong and good wins over evil. Will the Tea Party be the force that it was in 2010? I do not know. Who will emerge as our next great conservative leader? Again, I do not know.
What I do know is that no one can foresee the future well enough to be fatalistic. Thus, there is always hope. It behooves each and every one of us to stay diligent and focused on our mission to restore America.
No effort is too small. I call them "Lulu's Army." In response to numerous middle-aged women online asking, "How can I help?," Lulu is organizing them to work the social networks on behalf of the conservative movement. That's what I am talking about! Lulu is serving our cause from where she is and with what she can do. Imagine millions of patriots doing the same.
With great optimism, I am keeping my powder dry and my trust in God.