Tag Archives | conservatism

Making the “Miracle”

Several recent books on the Enlightenment have sought to celebrate its legacy but have been strangely cursory in their examination of actual Enlightenment thinkers, their ideas, and their influence, sometimes treating the embrace of reason, individual rights, and political freedom as a “miracle” that seemingly came out of nowhere. If you’re interested in the question […]

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Unfrozen Caveman Intellectual

“There is no God in this book.” So begins Suicide of the West, Jonah Goldberg’s contribution to the recent flurry of discussion about the legacy of the Enlightenment. Unfortunately, there’s not much of the Enlightenment in the book, either. If Steven Pinker’s Enlightenment Now treated the philosophical movement of the 18th century as if it […]

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What Is the Social Contract?

Michael Anton has responded to those who criticized him for his disastrous plan to have the president try to end birthright citizenship by executive order. His response is fundamentally non-responsive. He defends the fact that he used a doctored quote to back his view that the 14th Amendment, which established birthright citizenship, doesn’t actually do […]

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I Want to Be a Non-Conformist Just Like Everyone Else

Five Things You Need to Read Today Here is your latest update, for subscribers only, recommending five stories that are worth catching. 1. Marco Rubio Swims with the Current Marco Rubio really, really wants to be president. How much does he want it? Enough to swim with the current. In the 2016 primaries, Rubio represented […]

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Stampeding Onto the Trump Train

One of the chief arguments against Donald Trump is the very fact that so many of us on the right spend so much time arguing with each other about him. “The right” has always been a broad ideological coalition, and any president is going to lean toward one part of that coalition at the expense […]

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The MH370 Election

I observed recently that there is not much in the way of a broader trend of Trumpism within the Republican Party, at least not one that has been reflected so far in down-ballot elections. Part of the reason is because there is no real philosophy of Trumpism, and there are few intellectual defenses of Trump. […]

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This Won’t Be Trump’s GOP

If you’ve encountered hard-core Trump supporters, you’ve probably heard them declare that his candidacy is a kind of cleansing fire that is going to purge the weaklings from the party and remake it in their leader’s image. Maybe so, and that’s what a lot of us fear. We fear that if the Republican Party becomes […]

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Trump v. Madison

I recently tried to identify six groups of supporters of Donald Trump’s presidential bid. Afterwards, I got a lot of complaints that I left off a seventh group that a lot of his supporters say they belong to. My categories weren’t entirely meant to be disparaging, by the way. “Outright racists”? Yeah, that’s disparaging, but […]

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Seven Liberal Pieties Only the Right Still Believes

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve increasingly had the experience of saying things that would have been considered pieties in the liberal catechism when I was young—and which now will get you labeled as a howling reactionary. In retrospect, this is partly because the left didn’t always mean some of the ideals it used to pronounce […]

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An Answer to the Wrong Question

In less than a year, the agenda of the Republican Party will be pretty much fixed by the selection of its presidential nominee, whose policies we will all feel pressured to get behind, because they will probably be better than the prospect of Hillary Clinton selling the Oval Office furniture to the highest bidder. So […]

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