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Originally published at Quantum Matrix Scribe. Please leave any comments there.

Here’s a comment I wrote for James Joyner’s post on David Brooks’ proposal for a “Republican-lite” party. It’s so long I thought it might be worth it’s own little post:

Look, there’s really only one way to save the Republican Party, and that’s to become more libertarian. Dropkick the social conservatism out the door. You can’t have a party that says it will stay out of the boardroom invade the bedroom, and you can’t do that to foreign countries either.

Stop bailing out corporations and the banks. Stop the cronyism. Stop the subsidies to keep food prices high. Stop being pro-business and start being pro-market. Look for ways to break down the barriers holding people down and increase income mobility (forget about income inequality, it’s meaningless). Stop denigrating the poor and help them help themselves. Start getting serious about entitlement reform, because we’re already pass the point of no return, and now it’s just a question of how hard we’ll hit. Also, and this one is probably going to be very controversial, but it’s time to look at radical welfare reform. Whether that’s a negative income tax or a basic income, we need to replace the bloated mess we have today, but we do need to establish some sort of minimal safety net or floor so that people at least have a launchpad to get their lives started(and, for those Objectivists, don’t drag on the rest of us).

Stop being hypocritical on government spending: government spending is government spending. That means that you have to take cuts to defense spending too. Stop trying to take that stuff off the table. It’s stupid and makes you look like fourth-graders. If we’re going to cut government, we’re going to cut all of it, not just the parts you don’t like.

And for the love of jesus, stop being so virulently religious. Atheists and the nonreligious are one of the fastest growing demographics today. What’s interesting is that a lot of them are, if not the garden variety conservative, are more free market than people think. They’re not automatically godless Communists. I would say 50-60% are free market libertarians. Enough with the Christian rhetoric in your speeches. You don’t have to be a god-fearing Christian to believe in free markets and individual responsibility. That theoconservatism, combined with the social conservatism, is the #1 reason why the GOP brand sucks today. A lot of people don’t mind the free market and are cool with working for themselves and making some money to get ahead. But they can’t stand the religious crap, even if they are Christians. Nobody is that hardcore outside of Alabama and Georgia, and you can’t win elections with just two states.

Enough is enough is enough.