Saturday, March 24, 2012

American Conservativism: Why has it Flopped?

 American conservatism "was a series of attempts to keep the current situation from coming about." (From A Conservative Blog for Peace.) To quote:
Rod Dreher links to Jim Kalb, apparently a paleocon.

It helps to define what you mean by American conservatism. The Pilgrims? The ‘Enlightenment’ deist founding fathers? Burkean? Kirkian? The Old Right? Libertarian? Neocons going back to CIA operative Bill Buckley’s Cold Warrior statism running the Old Right off? But except for the neocons it’s all in retreat (our Ron Paul Revolution’s blacked out and even if we won they’d probably throw out the election; cue Emma Goldman quote).
At bottom, conservatism is the desire to remain true to type. So American conservatism is the desire for America to remain American.
But what does that mean? WASPs/northern Protestants only? Whether or not, why shouldn’t WASPs like being WASP, Germans like being German, etc.? Nothing wrong with that. Or a concept not an ethnos, a propositional nation (but with a few English values that can be universal)? The Old Republic? Freedom, live and let live, as long as you don’t harm others? (Government limited to that phrasing of the golden rule so we can all get along. Works for immigration: welcome! We don’t want to turn you into Protestants but play by this one rule of ours, which is not exclusively any faith’s; if you don’t, bye.) (Read entire post.)

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