Chairman's Blog

Not Your Parent’s Democratic Party

July 31, 2018


In the mid 90's when Oldsmobile wanted to attract a younger crowd with their 442 muscle car, they used a new advertising slogan, “This is not your father’s Oldsmobile”.

Democrats are trying a similar tactic today. And certainly the new Democratic Party bears little resemblance to the Democratic Party of yore.

Tip O’Neil, the fierce Democrat Speaker of the House during Ronald Reagan’s presidency is what we would call a liberal today.

The difference though between Tip O’Neill and the new Democrat Party leaders is that Tip put his country over party politics always.

Tip O’Neil and Ronald Reagan would frequently hide out, share a couple of drinks, and work through problems in a way that served our nation well. Both men realized that working together and coming to a sort of compromise was critical to achieving a positive resolution on key issues.

Of course it wasn’t unusual that in serving their partisan interests they might hold a press conference the next day criticizing the position of the other guy. But it was pure theatrics — they’d already plotted next steps and agreed on eventual outcomes.

Prior to Tip O’Neil, John Kennedy thoroughly understood the value of working with the other team to get things done. Of course Kennedy was not your typical left wing political hack who touted the liberal line. He actually alienated members of his own party by putting his country first and politics second. Building a superior military, sending a man to the moon, working on a strong economy, even cutting taxes — these were all major parts of his presidential agenda. Just contrast that to the 8 years of Obama.

Today we have a Democratic Party that believes the military is a dirty word, that being strong is offensive to the rest of the world, and that “leading from behind” is preferable to actually leading.

They think Americans generally — and especially those who are successful — should happily share their money with everyone else through government enforcement of schemes to redistribute wealth.  

They believe all people residing in America should be able to vote in America’s election — even those here illegally or who are not U.S. citizens. They believe that anyone who wishes to come to America should be welcomed.

They say that the health and welfare of society is too important to be left to individuals each choosing for themselves and so government must enforce desired behaviors. Sure, it may cause some to suffer, and everyone to lose their freedom, but stop complaining, after all it’s for your own good. At least as they define the good. And according to them, they’re the only ones who can define the good. They’re smarter, better, more unselfish than the rest of us.

No, this is not your parent's Democratic Party. It doesn’t bear any resemblance to the party of John Kennedy or Tip O’Neil.

Today the main stream of the Democratic Party prefers socialism to free enterprise.

They flatly refuse to work with the duly elected President of our country.

They lie about what the other side does, says, believes, cares about. They allege the worst kind of meanness, impure motives, corruption, and stupidity to Republicans in an effort to make themselves look good by comparison. And they do it all without offering a single viable policy proposal that doesn’t fit their big government, socialist plan for the future of our country.

It’s generally acknowledged that Oldsmobile’s ad slogan, “not your father’s Oldsmobile,” signaled the beginning of its eventual demise. The slogan not only said what Oldsmobile was not, rather than focusing on what it was; it conveyed the sense that loyal Olds’ customers should be embarrassed.

I’m hopeful the New Democrat Party follows a similar trajectory.

At least when your new car turns out to be a lemon you can trade it in next year. If these new radical Democrats win in November, the damage they do in the two years between elections is likely to be devastating and very possibly permanent.  

John Philip Sousa IV

John Philip Sousa IV is an entrepreneur, political activist, author and accomplished business person. John has worked in the financial services industry for over 40 years, built a highly successful marketing company, ran for congress at age 24, and in 2016 created and led the successful movement to draft Dr Ben Carson into his candidacy for President of the United States. John is author of John Philip Sousa, A Patriot’s Life in Words and Pictures and Ben Carson, RX for America.