As a practical matter, let's concede for a moment that conceding issues such as immigration, gay marriage and abortion makes sense -- and that's the implicit message of the project's report. I'm sympathetic on a number of points, but what's the cost-benefit analysis? Folks in Washington are obsessed with winning, and winning is nice. But politics is their livelihood. Average Americans don't participate in the political process to join a team; they knock on doors because -- as surprising as this may be to some -- they believe in something.
And even though social conservatives feel as if they're being swept aside by Republican Beltway types, fiscal conservatism will fare no better under this thinking. The idea of free markets is a moral one -- an American idea -- and a sellable one. Yes, polls show that young Americans are more pro-government than ever. So it'd be nice if there were a plan to convince them of how wrong they are -- as opposed to trying to sound more like the people they already agree with.