Surrender By Another Name Smells No Sweeter

The Art of "Compromise"

I had been enjoying a conversation with friends, and I made a remark about the notion of “false compromise.”  One friend asked me what constitutes a false compromise, and I thought you would be as interested as she in my answer.  We’re told that the “art of compromise” is the necessary glue of politics, and that it is only in compromise that we may resolve our various differences, but I contend that there are issues and situations in which no compromise is possible, because there is no shared basis in principles and values by which to derive anything that may be rightly termed “compromise.”  A false compromise occurs when one is so desperate for a deal that one is willing to surrender the entire meaning of the deal to have it.  This has applications outside of politics, but it is in this field where it is most frequently practiced.  Conservatives are being offered another compromise in their presidential nominee, but it’s become clear that no real compromise is in the offing, and what is desired is really surrender.

If we were to have a dispute over a property boundary, we might arrive at a compromise.  A compromise would offer us each something of value in exchange for what we’ve given up.  This would be the case if the boundary had been known approximately, but there was some minor dispute over the precise definition of the line. Each party might give up a little in favor of getting a little in the bargain.  That would constitute a true compromise, where both parties had something at stake, but both gained, each to his relative satisfaction.

Now imagine there is really no controversy over the boundary in dispute.  Let us assume it is a well-marked and long-established boundary that is well documented in the proper legal venues.  Let us assume that one party confronts the other over the boundary simply because he wants another foot, or another inch added to the breadth of his property.  There is nothing to be gained by the other party in entering into negotiations, and he would be better to let stand the legally established boundary without tampering.  When the aggressive party decides to pursue the matter, the defensive party will clearly need to stand in defense, and this will impose a cost. Often times, the first party, the aggressor, is on a fishing expedition to see what he might net, and sometimes the defensive party will relent just to make the matter go away.  This is not a compromise, even though it is often mislabeled as such. It is a false compromise which is merely a disguised version of something else: “Surrender.”

I say it is disguised because it is presented in various ways as compromise, in part so that the surrendering party can save face, but also in part because it pays a propaganda victory to the aggressor.  Due to this dual-dishonesty, it is worse even than mere surrender, because in that case,  at least nobody is permitted any pretense about what has actually happened.  False compromise is always illusory, and the fruits it is alleged to have borne inevitably evaporate in the grim realization of the truth by the surrendering party.

This is effectively the scenario by which the moderate and progressive Republicans have systematically delivered us to the more rabid statists of the left.  The left wants more property seized from your personal wealth?  The squishy moderates propose that you give them a little, this time.  And the next. And again. And once more.  In fact, they will have you slice off your property an inch at a time until you have no property at all.  In order to disguise their surrender, they call it “compromise,” but there is no actual compromise in it, because never do we get anything of equal or greater value for it.  No, to the contrary, what we receive is another bashing over the heads and a further demand for yet another [false] compromise.

This has been the march of the left, and the “moderate” Republicans for all my life, and then some.  It is therefore small wonder that fewer are inclined to accept such “compromise.”  At the current rate of compromise, within the span of a decade, I will be bound in chains and worked from dawn ’til dusk, and then some, to maintain some others in comfort while I am compelled in the name of “compromise” to live as a beast of burden.

It is for this reason that so many conservatives and Tea Party folk are unwilling to consider compromise in 2012.  They look back over the span of the last century, and all they see are the great surrenders disguised as compromise, and they are sickened by it.  Some in the party’s establishment are insistent on giving us yet another compromised candidate, who will be little better than the guy now accosting us from the Oval Office, but who they promise we will be able to steer and push and prod to the right.  If I accept this, I must however ask who it is that is being steered, and to whose advantage? Is that what I am to accept as the leader of the Republican party?  Somebody I must steer to the right lest he go off and support the false compromises we have seen spreading ruin and misery across the span of the last century?

No. I will not accept a false compromise like this again.  We’ve heard it all before, and it always ends in the same disaster.  We give up more to the aggressors, who never give up a thing, least of all their aggression, and it is on this basis that I reject the squishy moderates as worse than the open leftists.  That’s right, I said it.  They’re worse because they hope to maintain power while giving away the whole shooting match while convincing us it’s the only way to survive.  No.  No, it’s not, and I will accept no more of their surrenders dressed up as compromise.  I’m not moving that fence one more inch, and if somebody is so bold as to further breach that boundary, let them.  I’ll be waiting, but it won’t be to surrender.


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5 Responses to Surrender By Another Name Smells No Sweeter

  1. I know, there comes a time the last inch is the final straw. So, we put a line in the sand, and say, no more. This is where it ends. Period. Our freedoms, our liberties have been "compromised" long enough and far enough. All the attacks from all sides; political, moral, religious and even educational.. is enough. We need to ensure the pendelum, the aggression is stopped in it's entirety and reversed to take back what we have lost. We must vote, we must select the best that we see, and hold them to the understanding why they are elected. It certainly isn't because we like them. (smile) We have elected all the politicians from city to country to represent us, and take an oath to protect and abide by the Constitution of the United States. If they don't, then we have made a mistake and must vote them out again until they understand why they are there. This is the final election, the final right we have to determine which direction our country will go. Keep this in mind. At this point, I don't know what I will do when they come for me. We can brag, say, imply, but when they come knocking at your door…….. Indefinite is a long time.

  2. Frederick Rickner says:

    "In any compromise between food and poison, only death can win".
    Ayn Rand

  3. Charlie R says:

    I agree completely! I also recall Rush Limbaugh's doctrine of no surrender, no compromise – only complete and utter defeat – for the other side! There ARE things for which there is no compromise.

    There are times when retreat or even surrender are warranted in order to preserve the means and "men" to fight another day. However, on the battle field of politics in our beloved country, the time for strategic retreat, surrender or defeat is over! All who engage in this battle do well to recognize that only complete victory will prevent this great nation from slipping into economic, moral and social ruin.

    Tea Party Folk and those who were elected running on that platform – Constitutional Conservatives – Gird yourselves up for the fight. Stop fearing defeat! But perhaps even more importantly; stop fearing what the "bad" media will say about our intransigence while giving slithering liars like Harry Reed cover for statements like, "Millionaire job creators are like unicorns. They’re impossible to find, and they don’t exist…"

    To combat the propaganda of class warfare, I plan to thank the 1% every chance I get both in word and deed starting with the individual who writes my paychecks. Lets all thank those who are responsible for our jobs along with those who are living demonstrations of what is still possible in THIS COUNTRY – Success, however you may individually define it.

    This battle has many fronts and I could only wish that millions more of our fellow citizens were reading your exquisitely reasoned blog!

    Thank You for Your Service Mark – then and NOW.

  4. carbonyes says:

    Unfortunately, we still have too many false compromisers on the Republican side of the isle. Begins with Boehner in the House and McConnell in the Senate. not only do these kind need to be weeded out, but they need to scrap seniority, or it's "his turn" mentality, and seek the best person.
    Just as we need the best person to accede to the Presidency, we need the best person, one with backbone, character and integrity to be selected for Speaker.
    Playing political gamesmanship has not and will not get it done.
    The agenda and the programs must be set, and there is little or no room for compromise. The dire straits that we find ourselves in did not happen overnight, but it is going to take a commitment, energies a resourcefulness and sacrifices that have not been exhibited in many years, and not by just a few, but by a cadre similar to what was exhibited by our Founding Fathers. A little mix of General George S. Patton would not hurt either.