“Let’s Compromise” – What They Really Mean When They Say It

We constantly hear that conservatives need to compromise. We just can’t “move forward” unless conservatives compromise. There will not be “progress”, we are told, unless conservatives “reach across the aisle” and work with the liberals.

As an observer of political discourse for many decades, I do have a clear picture of what the calls for compromise really mean. I have compiled a handy list of the terms commonly used in this political debate and I think it will help you understand the liberal argument if you understand the true meaning of their words.

First, take a look at these three charts to get a picture of how the federal government has changed in the last 50 years. [It is a similar story for State governments.]  The charts tell the real story about compromise.

fed debt




For at least 50 years, when a liberal says “Let’s compromise”, he means, “Let’s move left…. let’s move in the direction of larger government. “

When a progressive says, “We are not going to get anywhere until you are ready to reach across the aisle”, he means, “We are not going to get anywhere until you are ready to completely move across the aisle and join me in the quest for a larger government.”

When mainstream media reporters say, “The conservatives are unwilling to compromise and this extremist position is slowing the progress of important legislation”, they mean, “Some bad people believe that we need to slow the growth of government and we are going to pound them until they accept the progressive position.”

When a RINO says, “There are some wacko-bird, Tea Party types who just don’t understand how things get done around here”, they mean “We are quite comfortable with a huge and growing government. We like our power and don’t want these limited-government types to mess it up. Our role as Republicans is to occasionally pretend we don’t like big government, but we can’t stand these radicals who say that and actually mean it. ”

When the Democrats say that all they want is “a balanced approach” in budget negotiations, they always want the ‘balance’ to be larger government and more spending first, with the promise of reduced spending and taxes way off in the future. The reduced spending never comes. Republicans seem to have an unlimited supply of gullibility in buying into this recurring scam. It could also be that they understand the game, but don’t really have strong objections.

If some principled conservative legislator says he is not buying into that scam, Senator Schumer will say, “You cannot negotiate when they take hostages and when they extort, period.” Senator Durbin will say it is “political terrorism” to demand a reversal in the growth of government. The media will agree. The Republican leadership will agree. The government will continue its un-sustainable growth.

President Obama says that because of Fox News and Rush Limbaugh “there is a Republican base of voters for whom compromise with me is a betrayal.” He says those nefarious forces have resulted in, “the inability of my message to penetrate the Republican base”. Obama makes no allowance for the possibility that some Americans heard his message clearly and disagree with it. He has perfected self-righteousness, which has always been a strong suit for liberals in general.

Obama’s position is: My policies are correct, and if it wasn’t for people disagreeing with me, then we would all agree. And then we could move forward smoothly to “the complete transformation” of this country.

When Obama says, “The one unifying principle in the Republican Party at the moment is making sure that 30 million people don’t have healthcare”, he may actually believe that absurd statement. He may be incapable of seeing that many people oppose government controlled healthcare because they know it will harm the quality of healthcare. They oppose it because they know government never runs things efficiently or inexpensively. Even with those facts clearly on display in Obamacare, with more Americans losing insurance than gaining it, with the economic assumptions of the law shown to be absurd, with chaos and incompetence everywhere, leftists will never acknowledge that their critics were right.

The history of the last 50 years is the history of relentless growth of government. The ‘compromises’ have been in one direction. This is not ‘give and take’. This is just take. Take more power and take more money for the ruling elites. Democrat politicians and apparently most Republican politicians like it that way.  To many Republicans, compromise simply means capitulate.

There is some solace in the fact that a recent Gallup poll reported that 72% of Americans say “big government” is the greatest threat to our country’s future. In another poll, 3% of Americans think immigration reform is a top priority. Global warming consistently ranks at the bottom of the list of concerns. Americans are much smarter than their leaders.

In the State of the Union speech and beyond we will be urged to “compromise”, to increase the size of government, to change the world’s climate with legislation, to open our borders. We need to “work together” and “be reasonable” to make sure that the red lines in the charts above continue to skyrocket upward in an absolutely unsustainable trajectory.

No. This leftward compromise must end. To survive, we need 50 years of “compromise” in the other direction.

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