Since the election, the topic of where we went wrong has been beaten dead. I like to learn from our mistakes and use history as an example for the future as much as anyone, but we have got to move on. Obama is our President. We must focus on 2012, now. There's been a fever pitch of "reformer vs. traditionalist" talk throughout conservative news outlets recently. I'll add my two cents to the discussion.
The idea of changing one's beliefs to fit current trends, or to win an election, is wrong. I might even say there is never a good time to do this.
The ideas of society and government's reach over it are everlasting. We're not a super society that has transcended the concepts, ideas and thoughts of the great political philosophers in history.
Currently we're in an economic crisis. We can trace its origin to an over-reaching government getting involved in social and economic issues it should never have gotten involved in. The current solution of using billions (and possibly trillions) of taxpayer money is another example of over-reaching government. I believe if we weren't in this crisis Obama wouldn't be president right now. McCain allowed the Republican party to be incorrectly blamed for it and we suffered in this election because of it. But is it a reason to reform the party? Absolutely not. It merely means we had a bad candidate who didn't run a good campaign this time around.
We need to remember that Obama only got elected to a 4-year term. Should we let the results of this election, and the next four years of an Obama presidency give us haste to reform the Republican Party? Absolutely not.
What if there were no economic crisis - would McCain have won? It's highly possible. There will always be something we as a society must deal with - whether its an economic crisis, natural disaster, war, peace-keeping endeavors, science and technological pursuits, etc. This is the normal ebb and flow of society.
That's why we should never adapt our beliefs to current trends. Our job is to deal with the situation in accordance with how we believe government should function in society. The situation changes, but our beliefs don't change.
Obviously, the majority wanted someone like Obama at this moment. In a few years they might want a change. That's the beauty of our democracy. We can vote for change when we want and need it. When the time comes that the majority does want change, are we going to present to them a newly-reformed Republican Party that changed itself to cater to the wants of the majority in 2008? Or are we going to show them the Republican Party that has stood its ground even when not in control - the party that always held its views of minimal government and individual liberty no matter how much they weren't en vogue?
This is the time to hold fast to those values of individual liberty, choice and minimal government - now, more than ever. Because when the Obama Administration fails to deliver on its exorbitant promises, and it will, people are going to want a change. We need to be ready when that happens.