In response to:

Social Conservatives: GOP Can't Live Without Them

Troglodite Wrote: Nov 27, 2012 7:09 PM
Amy, If people act aright, why do they usually do so? Probably from multiple motives that operate simultaneously: love of God, fear of hell, fear of the law, fear of social condemnation, fear of disappointing others, a desire to live up to a certain self-image, or a simple "prejudice" (in Edmund Burke's sense of the word) in favor of the right thing. That crusty, wise, humane old Tory, Samuel Johnson, well captured the complex interplay when he said, "Most people do not steal because thieves are hanged, but because they believe it wrong to steal. They believe it wrong, however, because thieves are hanged." My point is that our religious and moral "prejudices" are inter-related, such that you cannot add, remove, or swap out components...
Troglodite Wrote: Nov 27, 2012 7:28 PM
Amy,

Please read carefully. I fully concede that "there are some moral precepts" etc., etc. In fact, for reasons of my own, I would insist on it. I would maintain, however, that the religious motivations which assist people in attempting to follow these precepts cannot be, so to speak, swapped out and replaced ad libitum.
AmyDB Wrote: Nov 27, 2012 7:19 PM
*smile*
While that is true Trog there are some moral precepts which do cut across most if not all Faiths, religions, or philosophies.
Truth, honor, courage, perseverance...all these are universal.
Troglodite Wrote: Nov 27, 2012 7:14 PM
Ever since Aristotle, we have known that a democratic polity rests on its Middle Class, defined not only by its economic position, but also by its "bourgeois virtues": fair dealing, thrift, hard work, prudence, a willingness to defer gratification, etc. Historically, these virtues were supported by religion and cultivated in and for families. Prior to the Sexual Revolution, growing up and acquiring the bourgeois virtues was the price a young man paid to get a wife (and to get his ashes hauled as often as he would like). The Sexual Revolution has helped to undo the bourgeois virtues and the Middle Class and to create cohorts of short-sighted parasites who vote for the party of bread and circuses.
Troglodite Wrote: Nov 27, 2012 7:11 PM
...without major, perhaps not initially predicatable changes,

I do not believe that government has a direct interest in matters of sexual morality. I agree, however, with Aristotle and others who say that a democratic polity rests on its middle class, defined as much as anything else by its "bourgeois virtues." Excise the sexual virtues from the matrix, and the others will be affected, as we have seen happening during the last two or so generations, if not more.

[A later posting of mine expands on that theme.]
One of the largest elephants in the GOP's post-election room is the fate of Christian and other social conservatives. Party honchos can't just wish this problem away -- or, maybe they can.

There has been increasing hostility toward Christian involvement in politics, and the animus hasn't been solely from the left. To be sure, Democrats have taken the lead, demonizing conservative Christians as science-challenged scolds who don't care about women's "reproductive rights," but there is plenty of antipathy from certain elements within the Republican Party, as well.

Many establishment and some libertarian Republicans have long looked upon Christian conservatives with mild, condescending...