The January 2013 issue of Commentary asked 53 writers and conservative leaders What is the Future of Conservatism?
This is part of the response from Bret Stephens,
I know it’s a small thing in the scheme of the universe that Ashcroft should have been offended by a piece of statuary. It’s probably no big deal that Senator Marco Rubio professes agnosticism as to whether the Earth is thousands or billions of years old. Had Todd Akin of Missouri been elected to the Senate, his notions of reproductive biology would have had scant bearing on, say, his votes on defense. The fact that a considerable percentage of Republican voters believe Barack Obama’s college transcripts are the Da Vinci Code of his presidency is of slight consequence to the future of Western civilization. It makes little practical political difference that so many Republicans consider the theory of evolution to be a piece of quackery on par with, say, the teachings of Madame Blavatsky. The mysterious inability or unwillingness of so many Republicans to use the adjectival form when speaking of the “Democrat Party” is not an issue on which the fate of the Republic hinges.
But it adds up. To a greater degree than some readers of this magazine may care to admit, the conservative movement has grown prudish, crotchety, God-obsessed, conspiratorial, retrograde, and insipid. Somebody needs to stand athwart and yell “stop.”
I write this as someone who thinks the Obama administration is wreaking long-term damage on the United States at home and abroad. So it’s all the more depressing that the conservative movement and its organs in politics and the media failed to pass what ought to have been an easy test: winning a winnable election. If the GOP could not defeat an incumbent president who had saddled himself with high unemployment and the most unpopular legislation in modern history, how do they expect to defeat Hillary Clinton should she run in 2016?
If you went to the web page for a company you were considering transacting with and it stated objectives that appealed to you such as rapid order response and competitive prices you may give them a call. But if the receptionist was an idiot, the salesman was a fool and the credit clerk was rude, you would probably go elsewhere. This is how I see the GOP. They declare worthy goals and then put the execution of the goals in the hands of incompetents This is not to say they there are some worthy leaders, but there are enough fools that it becomes hard to attract voters.