Thomas Sowell

That takes work. But it is work that any number of conservative commentators on radio and television do every day of the week. And they are very successful in getting across arguments that Republican politicians do not bother to try to get across.

Democrats are constantly articulating their talking points. Less than 24 hours elapsed after the Congressional Budget Office reported that ObamaCare was likely to cause many workers to have their hours cut back, before Democrats were all talking about the "freedom" this would give workers to pursue other interests, rather than being "locked-in" to long hours on a full-time job.

It was a slick and dishonest argument, but the point here is that Democrats immediately saw the need for articulation -- and for all of them to use the same words and phrases, so as to establish their argument by sheer repetition.

Nor was this the first time that Democrats coordinated their words and phrases. A few years ago, Senator Chuck Schumer was secretly recorded giving fellow Democrats the word to use whenever describing Republicans -- namely, "extreme."

When George W. Bush first ran for president in 2000, the word among Democrats was that he lacked "gravitas." People who had never used that word in years were suddenly saying "gravitas" 24/7.

The Republican establishment has more than a tactical deficiency, however. They seem to have no principle that they offer or follow with any consistency. Their lack of articulation may be just a reflection of that lack of principle. It is hard to get to the point when you have no point to get to.

Ted Cruz filled a void. But the Republican establishment created the void.


Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

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