The opposition party can not seem to decide whether to become more hard core conservative (and they need to CLEARLY define what that means) or more like their competition, which is a form of surrender or defeat.

But another alternative would be to take a Zen approach, which would amount to making the opposition irrelevant. In marketing this approach is known as surpetition, a phrase coined by Edward DeBono, but it is also simply known as creating your own category, or your own set of advantages.

Instead of going head to head with your competition in a set category, you create a new category that you own completely. For example instead of going head to head with Avis and Hertz, Enterprise Rent a Car focused on the market outside of the airport. Guess who now has the largest rent a car fleet in America: hint- it ain’t Hertz or Avis.

In the martial arts Akido and other schools teach you to use your opponent’s power against them.

Here are some applications of that idea:

Republicans are pro choice- we believe you should choose your own doctor, your own school, and your own future.

You can not trust the free market …. to keep failures in power. Only government and its cronies can do that.

Your vote means nothing ….. if you surrender your freedoms to your elected officials.

But effective marketing is about focus and it means giving up some points to focus on more important points, and this is where the Republicans trip themselves up.

Personally I think they need to open up the tent on social and religious issues and focus on fiscal and liberty issues.

Effective Zen Politics seeks to render the competition irrelevant, and restores control of the debate. When you own the category you are never on the defensive.