Friday, September 02, 2016

It's the End of the Conservative World as We Know It

Paul Gottfried
There is one conservative blog (other than, of course, Vital Remnants) that will put the current election in excellent perspective. It is a conservative oasis in the sea of nonsense. It is the Imaginative Conservative. Today's article is a great example of why this online magazine is a light in the conservative darkness. Paul Gottfried, one of the great modern conservative writers reflects on the state of modern conservatism, so-called:

[E]very time I hear the term used to describe a GOP position on just about anything, I have to wonder what makes that position “conservative.” Why for example is nation-building abroad, which involves imposing the latest model of American democracy on populations that are culturally quite different from the present American ruling class, a “conservative” position? And why is letting American working communities languish while our jobs are outsourced a “conservative” policy? The obvious answer is such stands are talking points deployed by the Republican Party as it works to hold on to certain constituents. These stands also happen to be those of the GOP donor base.

... I am convinced that the designation “conservative” is losing any substantive meaning, except for attachment to Republican operatives and donors and the label that particular media personalities choose to give themselves. 

In going back and reading Russell Kirk, as I have had the occasion recently of doing, I am reminded once again of how far gone modern so-called conservatism is. Real conservatives are trapped between a presidential candidate and his followers who hold many positions consistent with conservatism but who, when asked to defend them blindly repeat that the want to "Make America Great Again," and establishment Republicans who hold many positions at complete odds with conservatism.

And, worse, both factions have abandoned the long tradition of social conservatism. On Trump's end you get an immigration plan that would only let in people who support the agenda of radical gay rights groups (maybe that's the reason he opposes letting so many Syrian Christians into the country):

Recently he discussed how he would make Muslims entering the United States undergo “extreme vetting,” which would include making sure they had favorable attitudes toward gays and affirmed full gender equality. I’ve no idea why this test is something associated with the Right. It looks like something that came from editorial board of the New York Times or from some other publication that is now attacking Mr. Trump as a fascist.

On the other side you have the New Conservative Establishment, who were waving the white flag on marriage even before the ink on Obergefell had dried:

Popular “conservative” journalists Jonah Goldberg and John Podhoretz are high on gay marriage, which they argue promotes family values. National Review‘s rising star Jillian Kay Melchior wishes to see the United States become more fully engaged in Ukraine against Vladimir Putin, lest transgendered Ukrainians come under reactionary Russian sway. Other conservative journalists have berated the Russian president for not allowing gay pride parades in Russian cities.

As Kirk pointed out, conservatives in any time are almost necessarily relegated to the status of a Remnant, and we probably need to embrace that role, which means keeping our powder dry in elections like this one.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't understand why conservatives bother with keeping up this facade of rationality. I know you didn't come to your political beliefs by way of reason - it's plainly libidinal. And I know you know this, too. You are Trump.