Ten Second News

The Salad Bowl

Jonah Goldberg makes an odd claim in his latest column: The mainstream perception that conservatives are close-minded and dogmatic while liberals are open-minded and free-thinking has it almost exactly backward. Liberal dogma is settled: The government should do good, where it can, whenever it can. That is President Obama’s idea of pragmatism and bipartisanship: He’s…

Taking Leave of Our Senses

“But the argument isn’t going away. It will be with us as long as the threat of terrorism endures. And where the Bush administration’s interrogation programs are concerned, we’ve heard too much to just “look forward,” as the president would have us do. We need to hear more: What was done and who approved it,…

Intellectual Insecurity

To follow-up briefly on the recent discussion regarding intramural conservative debate, there’s an odd tendency among certain mainstream conservatives to unduly concern themselves with enforcing intellectual orthodoxy. Case in point is this hysterical blog post from National Review’s Cesar Conda, which implores the Hoover Institute to kick Professor Diane Ravitch off the payroll for suggesting…

A Plea for Engagement

Via the American Conservative, I see that Sean Scallon’s challenging article on Jimmy Carter is getting some well-deserved attention. And for that, I’m glad – it’s an interesting take on a fascinating historical figure.  But you know who I’d really like to see respond to Scallon’s piece? How about a National Review symposium, or perhaps…

Tradition and Ideology

J.L. Wall, writing in response to Scott’s treatise on 21st Century Conservatism, writes: There’s a danger in a self-conscious tradition, and a tradition in which it’s acceptable to toss off a limb for the sake of the whole — traditions, in addition to being billion-headed rabbis (not letting that analogy go, folks), are like starfish:…

Regarding Rush

I suppose the reason I haven’t commented much on the resurgence of Rush Limbaugh into the national spotlight, is I have never, ever taken the Great Bloviator seriously.  He’s always been just another talk-radio windbag to me, representing not just an ideological demographic that I find unappealing, but also a tone and style that is…

quote of the day

“Conservatives seem to have spent the last year rapidly regressing from cheering on lame politicians who could at least intelligently recite their platitudes (Romney) to worshipping pseudo-populists who could not even do that (Palin) to elevating random guys who didn’t like taxes (the Plumber) to rallying around a radio host who makes Romney’s own brand…

Killing Frankenstein’s Monster

Downblog, Chris puts together a fantastic post that quite well explains the ways in which modern liberalism and classical liberalism (ie, libertarianism) have a tremendous amount in common at the fundamental “first principles” level, at least if you accept the definition of modern liberalism contained within Chris’ post.  As I note in the comments, arguably…

The Tone-Deafness of the “Statism” Charge

Jonah Goldberg argues that a left-libertarian fusionism is not only doomed to failure but is in fact likely to lead to a less libertarian, more “statist” society: As for it being undesirable, I am consistently amazed when liberals and libertarians (and even some conservatives) want the right to abandon its dogmatic aversion to statism in…

Painting in broad strikes

Helen Rittlemeyer thinks I’m talking trash about her kind of conservatism.  In a previous post, I wrote: Often cultural conservatives are also religious, and consider religion to be an integral part of their civilization, but do not necessarily frame their political worldview on a vision of religious infallibility, recognizing along with the gradual changes in…