Ten Second News

Rise of the right-wing double-speak machine and the Sandra Fluke affair

Think of this as a brief addition to Tod Kelly’s last piece which reminded me how unbelievably silly the American political scene has become. This whole Sandra Fluke affair – my eyes just glaze over. I can’t help it, it’s like so many of the other nontroversies plaguing our national discourse. The Limbaughs and Coulters and Becks of…

No, Americans are not “operationally liberal”

Responding to my demurrer to “the old saw that Americans are ideologically conservative but operationally liberal,” Yeggmen sticks up for the saw:  what researchers have (repeatedly) done is get a bunch of people together and have them fill out a long and comprehensive political questionnaire. They ask them to choose an ideological label, vague questions…

Conservatism: Defender of the Modern Welfare State?

I am grateful for the incentive Jason’s rebuttal provides to study conservative thinker Michael Oakeshott.  However, I respectfully disagree with Jason’s conclusion that “esteem[ of] the present … on account of its familiarity” suffices to establish conservatism.  Thus, I stand on my assertion that there is something more to the idea of conservatism than unthinkingly…

Painting Conservatism Out of the Corner: A Review of William Voegeli’s Never Enough: America’s Limitless Welfare State

Andrew Sullivan’s recent apologia—or, perhaps, obituary—of conservatism makes at least one very good point:  Modern conservatism has painted itself into a corner.  Concerning the poor and uninsured, for example, Mr. Sullivan rightly observes that “in a society that won’t let people die on the street, these are real and tough problems we cannot just wish…

On Certainty & Doubt

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard…

Against Intellectual Provincialism

Epistemic Closure Revisited Eons ago in blog-years, Julian Sanchez provoked some indignant responses by suggesting that conservatives are too dependent on a closed, self-referential media ecosystem. Sanchez’s original post elicited a sharp reply from Jonah Goldberg, who argued that for all its faults, the Fox News-talk radio axis is still better than the alternative (the…

Speaking of the World’s Most Infamous Creed Apologist

(UPDATED BELOW THE FOLD) Joe Carter, with whom Barrett will be brawling beginning tomorrow, makes a highly unique argument with regards to the Tea Party, at least to the extent that he is making it from a conservative perspective.  Joe’s thesis is that the Tea Party movement is not really a movement at all, writing:…

Narrative Over Principle: The Perils of Believing Your Own Propaganda

I’ve not got a whole heck of a lot to add to this very good paragraph from Glenn Greenwald on the whole hubbub over the propriety of the Obama Administration’s entirely speculative suggestions (with the backing of Think Progress) that the Chamber of Commerce’s election ads are funded, at least in part, by foreign contributions:…

The conservative disposition

Jason has just given you the liberal-libertarian disposition, so I thought I’d try my hand at explaining why I’m sometimes drawn to the conservative alternative. My knowledge of political philosophy is almost nil, so I’ll avoid name-checking prominent thinkers. Instead, I want to explain where I differ from Jason’s historical perspective. Jason views society as…

Once More into the Liber-al-tarian Breach

Erik’s post today gives me a good excuse to better define and clarify what I’m talking about when I talk about liber-al-tarianism and the notion that the intermediate-term future of libertarianism lies more with the Left than the Right.  I think Erik’s analysis in that post is pretty much right on the money, but I also…

What Tyranny Looks and Sounds Like

This video, and in particular the audio, needs to be distributed far and wide.  It should be on every evening news broadcast tonight.  It depicts what real, actual tyranny looks like, and how it has become a regular, everyday occurence in the United States of America.  What is so remarkable about this video is precisely…

Millman’s Taxonomy ctd.

William summarizes Millman’s taxonomy (and doesn’t that roll off the tongue? You almost want to capitalize ‘taxonomy’: Millman’s Taxonomy – as if it were some well established thing…) thusly: liberal vs. conservative (attitudes toward the individual and authority) left vs. right (attitudes toward social/economic winners and losers) progressive vs. reactionary (attitude toward past and future)…

Folk wisdom and the tyranny of the experts

[updated below] I’ve been thinking about birth a great deal lately. This is likely because birth in my family is just around the corner. Our second is due in July. In any case, all this birth-thinking and meeting with doctors and birthing experts and midwives and such has me pondering how we as a culture…

More conservative rap.

So young white conservatives are still making political rap videos. At least the production values on WOLVERINES’s “One Term President” are leagues beyond last year’s Young Con Anthem, which Michael E. Van Landingham described as “tired, uncreative, and dizzyingly repugnant.” I guess most of the viewers found this new one (below the fold) via WorldNetDaily…

Blond at Georgetown

Your faithful correspondent donned a collared shirt and ventured into Georgetown last night to listen to Philip Blond’s presentation on “Red Toryism” (Blond’s Wikipedia entry is here; the Porch has a good introductory post here). Blond’s ideas have attracted a murderers’ row of the League’s favorite bloggers, so I thought I’d (briefly) summarize his presentation…

Critics of Woodrow Wilson strangely ignore the worst aspects of his presidency

I’m happy to see that disenchantment with Woodrow Wilson – the most bizarre candidate for the pantheon of great American presidents – is reaching a wider audience on the American Right. But this nascent critique of Wilsonian progressivism seems to have missed one of his worst legacies. Namely, Wilson’s blatant disregard for civil liberties (from…

Markets in everything ctd.

I think Jason and I disagree less than his critique of my post would suggest.  He is correct that my rather brief treatment of markets (and the purpose of markets) leaves a great deal to be desired.  I was not intending to write a piece explaining the many benefits (or limitations) of markets per say…