ON-Lion Letter

"The Republican working-class voter's loss of faith in the party leadership is part of a broader and even more worrisome trend:  the American public's loss of trust in government generally," according to a January article in National Review Online by Mario Loyola, a senior fellow at the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) in Milwaukee.  The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation substantially supports WILL.

"Remarkably, during the Obama administration, trust in government has stayed at rock bottom," Loyola writes in "Behind America's Crisis of Confidence:  Government of, by, and for Special Interests," "lumbering along at around 20 percent during his whole presidency -- the first time in the history of polling that a two-term president has presided over such perilously low trust in government for such a long time without a respite.

"To understand why the GOP working-class voter has lost faith in the GOP elites, one must understand why Americans have lost trust in government generally," he continues.  "Prolonged wars are clearly partly to blame but can explain only a small part of it.

"I would posit the following explanation:  The progressive scheme of government insinuates the federal government into too many things that government can't do well," according to Loyola.  "Worse, in its zeal to serve certain special interests, the progressive scheme of government hands power over to special interests of all kinds.  The public interest loses at every turn, and the people can see that, too.

"If the crisis of the Republican party, and American democracy, has a silver lining, it is this:  The American people did not knowingly choose the progressive 'constitution' we have today," he concludes.  "They were tempted to embrace its several elements by a bewitching and misleading appeal to their sense of justice and generosity.  What American could fail to be moved by the Grapes of Wrath?  But today the wrath of the tired and voiceless is directed at progressive government.  Americans are no longer willing to ignore its blatant failures.  And therein lies a great opportunity."

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