Glory days of the (GOP) were before labor unions, before Social Security, before Medicare, before unemployment compensation, before welfare, before overtime payment requirements, before all those pesky safety regulations, and of course before those child labor restrictions (of course they have found ways of getting around child labor laws by relocating their businesses to 3rd world countries).

Yes, labor was dirt-cheap.  Workers could be exploited and paid predatory wages.  You literally owned your employees.  Employees fired or laid off were destined to either starve to death or turn to a life of crime to survive.

Employee attempts to unionize and demand better pay and better working conditions were met with resistance from both the rich business owners and GOP politicians that worked for them.  Rich Business owners, the GOP base, also hired the Pinkerton Agency’s quasi-military forces to “persuade” workers that it was not “healthy or safe” for them or their family members if they joined a union.  You have all seen the old western movies where the railroad employed the Pinkertons to get farmers and ranchers to give up their land to the railroad.

The Anti-Pinkerton Act was passed to punish the Pinkertons and prevent any quasi-military groups from ever receiving government contracts (remember President Lincoln’s protection was provided by the Pinkerton Agency and at one time they had more armed agents than the US Military).  Believe it or not, the Anti-Pinkerton Act was actually signed by a Republican president.  However, the GOP did nothing to actually help the working class.  Real help requires tax dollars.  Follow the money to predict any decision made by the GOP.

After the great depression the Democrats, (DNC) came to power, The DNC worked with unions to pass legislation related to fair pay, safe working conditions, and social safety nets such as Social Security, Medicare, Welfare, Medicaid, and unemployment compensation.  The GOP tried to demonize all of these social initiatives calling them communist and socialist programs.  To this day, many in the GOP still seek to someday eliminate these programs.

Given the GOP only technically represents the wealthiest of our population, why hasn’t the party faded out of existence?  First, given their almost infinite financial resources (the top 20% hold 85% of the wealth in the US), they can market any image they want (make no mistake, money buys elections, a successful campaign costs lots of money).

The GOP has very successfully succeeded in surviving by:

1) Compromises – Embracing, at least temporarily, DNC social issues such as Social Security, even though they keep pushing rumors of it going away, and/or privatizing the program (privatizing means eliminating).

2) Christian Image – Targeting white fundamentalist churches whose education levels are low or their colleges are run by the church and what is taught can be controlled.  They change the focus from Christian values and ideology to a focus on abortion and homosexuality.

3) Exploit Bigotry and Racist Attitudes – Focus on latent prejudices; demonize people of other races, demonize the poor, demonize people of other religions.  When Obama was president, they made up the stories claiming he was not a citizen.  They edited a speech that made it sound like he was Muslim.

4) Gerrymandering – Redrawing state congressional districts tightly grouping DNC voters, while grouping other areas giving GOPs a slight advantage.  The result is having an overwhelming DNC state with a GOP controlled legislature (example: one district with 90% DNC 10% GOP, second district 40% DNC 60% GOP, third district 45% DNC 55% GOP resulting in one DNC district and two GOP districts).  Some of these districts ended up looking highly distorted and blatantly showed the GOP intent to dilute the DNC vote while amplifying the GOP vote.

5) Voter Suppression - Make voting harder for DNCs by analyzing the most common forms of ID used by DNCs and changing the rules to not allow forms of ID most used by DNCs.  Reduce the availability of voting locations in areas with high numbers of registered DNCs and limit the hours available to vote.  At the same time start rumors of voter fraud to justify voter suppression efforts.

6) False News – Align with a news source willing to put out the misleading or fake news while accusing legitimate news sources of fake news.  Get people emotionally and psychologically charged up with unsupported nonsense and propaganda.  As President Obama once said, “They have been feeding their base all kinds of crazy for a long time.”

7) Pledge Allegiance to Gun Lobby – Partner with the National Rifle Association (NRA).  No matter how many lives are lost due to firearms, resist any legislation that restricts or makes access to weapons more difficult (to include reasonable background checks).

What some people consider unethical, the GOP might consider a brilliant political strategy.  When people spend too much time in an unethical environment they lose sight of what is right, and what is wrong.  In an extreme rightwing environment, they rationalize that the end justifies the means.

Two of my favorite verses:

Proverbs 14:15

“The simple believe anything, but the prudent give thought to their steps.”

1 Corinthians 15:33

“Evil company corrupts good character.”

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