By Joshua Sager
When we are all arguing policy with one another we sometimes fail to step back and look at the possible end states of our policies as an ideology. Basically, if you could get everything that your party wants, what would your country look like in the end?
In this article, I extrapolate the stated policies of the current GOP in order to come up with a view of what a Republican controlled country would look like in the absence of an opposition party.
The Republican World
Economic status: privatized social programs, profit based justice, and corporate power over personal power.
The economy in a Republican America is based entirely upon the profit motive. Companies compete in the totally free market and regulations have long been repealed. Due to the inherent flaws in the free market ideology when mixed with the democratic political system, the large corporations dominate over the smaller ones through undercutting prices and manipulating the awarding of contracts. The pro-corporate politicians remain in power over the less corporately owned ones because of sheer volume of money and advertising, thus in this end state the corporate interests control the political processes. The cycle of corporations buying political support and awarding office leads to the entirely "Pro-Business" regulatory climate. Regulations on labor, pollution and product safety have been completely repealed, leading to massive profits for the corporations and those who have money, while the other 90% are little better than serfs. With the destruction of labor regulations and unionization there are few protections for the worker, thus hours are longer and less money is given to the blue collar family. Worker safety decreases at the same time legal liability for the companies does, leading to little recourse for the worker when they are harmed on the job. Pollution is rampant due to a lack of regulations on anything from CO2 to oil spill cleanup but don't worry, the corporations and "job creators" won't lose money.
Infrastructure status: Completely privatized
The infrastructure of the USA in a Republican end state is completely privatized, from education to public safety. The public school systems have either been destroyed or eviscerated in favor of private schools, which unfortunately cost more money and don't get any better results. Teachers unions are gone and thus teachers get far less money for their hard work. A decrease in the draw for competent teachers has reduced the quality of education to the point where we simply no longer can compete in the world in terms of innovation. A very small upside to this situation is that the rich children's private schools are still superior and thus a privileged overclass is born (normally I don't agree with Marxism but this is one thing that they predicted accurately). Police and fire protection have been privatized to the point where more affluent areas get superior coverage but the rest of us suffer from a terminal lack of protection. Look at the situation where a privatized fire department let a house burn down over a $75 missed fee, despite having their equipment on site and you will see the future as the Republicans see it. The only public good which is not privatized is the military because we all know that you have to pay private military contractors far better than simple soldiers; it would be a shame if the warmongers needed to pay even larger exorbitant amounts during their perpetual wars.
In the Republican world, all social policy and rights are founded in the writings of two documents: the Constitution (or somebody's warped interpretation) and the Bible. As the Republicans in power believe that the social safety net is unconstitutional, it no longer exists in this world. Social security has either been eliminated or privatized in a way that transforms it into a voucher program. The poor and disabled live in far inferior conditions to what they do now and people are forced to work longer and harder. Medicare and Medicaid have been completely disbanded because come on, what an infringement it would be if everybody were forced to have medical insurance coverage (no shit, this is their argument). As we saw before the start of social medical programs, many more people will get sick and die prematurely than do now. Rights in the Republican America are simplified into two categories: The second amendment and whatever it says in the bible. Gun rights are absolute and so are the rights of free speech, just as long as your views are in line with the conservative views. Other than part of the first amendment and an expansion of the second amendment, the constitution is only given lip service. Due to the bible's control over the social policy of the Republican America, abortion and gay rights have been completely abolished. Not to say that abortions would not occur and gay people wouldn't exist, but they will be criminalized (like in Texas during the 20s) under the law. If you are Christian, white and upper class this world would be a very comfortable place to live but otherwise I would wish you luck.
System sustainability: Strong
The Republican end state would actually be a very stable political system; the terms conservative and grand OLD party are certainly accurate descriptors of the Republican mindset. As shown in the Republican primary, those who are ideologically impure are quickly expunged from the political scene. The Republican political establishment would reject any call to change and the massive concentration of money in the top echelons of society would make us resemble a feudal society; one lord with hundreds of indentured serfs. Without power to resist, the Republican America would be very difficult to return to a more balanced system.