All Posts Tagged With: "Conservatism"

Still The Gold Standard: Barry Goldwater’s “The Conscience of a Conservative” 50 Years Later

“The Conservative also recognizes that the political power on which order is based is a self-aggrandizing force; that its appetite grows with eating. He knows that the utmost vigilance and care are required to keep political power within its bounds.” – Barry Goldwater

Evidenced by the fact that I recently finished re-reading Barry Goldwater’s The Conscience of a Conservative on a kindle—much has changed since it was first published in 1960. However, by the staggering parallels that its content has to the political realities of 2011, one could say that not much has changed at all.

Anyone who chooses to invest the few hours necessary to read this book will become apprised of the historical context in which the political and ideological battles of our …


President Obama, Day #…..

july2009Ah, who cares?

As disappointed as I was about the outcome of the last general election, I thought I’d take a few months off from writing and spend it observing this new global (dare I say, Intergalactic?) phenomenon that is our new President.  Today is July 6, and I fear that he is almost exactly what I thought he would be last summer, that is to say, pathetic.

Having said this, I have to confess that the reason I took some time from writing was that I wanted to be objective in my assessment of this man (as opposed to self-styled Deity).  So many conservatives have been lambasted precisely because they wouldn’t give President Obama a chance.  Not that he needed one, but we DO …


Energy Leninism? Or Just Plain Leninism?

leninAs goes Energy, so goes the country.

“The worse, the better,” Vladimir Lenin is said to have observed. What Lenin meant was that the worse social conditions became in Russia, the more likely he and the Bolsheviks could foment a communist revolution. President Barrack Obama’s White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel recently updated Lenin’s maxim, saying, “Never allow a crisis to go to waste.”Last Friday, the Democratic leadership in the House of Representatives took those maxims to heart when they pushed through their 1,200-page American Clean Energy and Security (ACES) Act by a vote 219 to 212. The bill is supposed to address the twin crises of economic recession and climate change by creating millions of new “green” jobs. Instead of an


We Forgive You. Now Git.

governorsanford-officialportraitI’m saddened, frustrated , and absolutely disappointed.  The story of Mark Sanford was a roller coaster that dumped me off a cliff at the end.  Allow me to take you through this sequentially.

I’ve spent the past 36 hours dramatically changing my thoughts about how I might speak to the unusual story of South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford’s mysterious disappearance.   Mark was the head of the Republican Governor’s Association (now headed by Haley Barbour), and considered a potential candidate for the 2012 Presidential nomination.

First I thought, after hearing that he had been missing for several days after driving off in a bodyguard’s SUV, that this guy was a little weird.  I could, at that point, conceive of only one type of circumstance that might …


It’s About Freedom

row-of-us-dollar-signsArthur Brooks, at  The Wall Street Journal suggests that there’s a bit of a culture war going on about the future of capitalism.  The headline suggests that “The Real Culture War Is Over Capitalism “

There is a major cultural schism developing in America. But it’s not over abortion, same-sex marriage or home schooling, as important as these issues are. The new divide centers on free enterprise — the principle at the core of American culture.

I dare suggest Brooks in this quote, has this exactly backward.  He’s pointing at a symptom and labeling at the root cause. Not that I blame him, really.  It’s been so long since we’ve dealt with things on the level of principle that even the more learned among …


Obama’s Optical problems

On the morning of February 17th,I was standing in line getting coffee at the little cafeteria at my day gig. Behind me were two guys that had obviously been in heated discussion for some time. I don’t know either of them. I can’t vouch for the conversation being word for word, but here it is from my memory:

So, let me understand this. Obama’s going to Denver, today… several days after the bill he was so much in a hurry to sign that none of Congress could actually take the time to read it, was placed on his desk. Why did he wait all that time after the vote? So he could vacation?

Well, no, so he could fly out to Denver, I guess.

Why


Observations on a New Year

Here we are!  2009!  What can we say?

2008 is gone and I think we’re all grateful for that.  Republicans had their hats handed to them, although Conservatives fared pretty well.  And there’s the difference.  Moderate Republicanism is indistinguishable from the Democrats.  If Republicans want to regain their stature in Washington and the state houses across America, they need to do it at the grass roots level and they need to return to Conservative values.  Barack Obama is the President-elect not because of his microscopic resume, or because of the political cesspool he climbed out of, or the message of change and hope, because he represents neither.  He won the national election because the Republican candidate was a moderate with a poorly-crafted message, and so …


The Path to Victory: Grassroots Republicanism

Let’s start, with a premise:

Every Republican president candidate since 1964 has had their level of success or failure, respectively, tied directly to the degree of voter perception that they have or have not turned their back on conservatism.

Consider the history of the thing… and it all flows one way:

  • Nixon billed himself a conservative, and successfully, even though in most respects he was a California Moderate, and came down more or less where  John McCain was in the most recent election; to the left of George W Bush.  Yet, Nixon had an electoral landslide in both elections. (Admittedly, the Democrats he ran against were a laughable lot, which didn’t hurt him.)
  • Bush 41 figured if he bent over forward enough, the left would

A Shot At Defining Conservatism

We are thinking heavily here about how to present a systematic approach to understanding what we call “Conservatism”.  Just this week, a fellow Iowa blogger Albert Bregar penned his thoughts at Red County Polk County and Iowa Defense Alliance.

Albert provides an excellent start with a view to how many of us think about defining the way conservatives see the world today (okay, such a view would include “Ronald Reagan came back for more”).  We will certainly start looking around blogdom and start collecting a list of such statements as “Smaller Government” and build them into a resource. 

But in stating the conservative view of today’s world, we do limit ourselves to more of a statement of “how does conservative thinking apply to today’s …


Reset: New Beginnings

About a two and a half years ago we started this blog with a vague idea of what we wanted to accomplish. That first post was pretty much just a “hello”, with a short commentary on me. It took four months for me to write a second post, and a year after that for the third one.  From that point on our vision for The Conservative Reader began to take form and about a year ago we began writing in earnest.

Since January 1 2008, we have provided one or more pieces of commentary on politics, government and business (okay, an occasional cutover to sports) every single day.  As the Presidential Election took shape we pretty much got wrapped up into the whole political cycle …


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