Youth Movement

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Youth Movement

Can a different kind of conservative movement be built? Maybe. Pat Buchanan is one leader on the Right who clearly stands for a foreign policy, economics, and cultural vision very unlike those of the movement. That’s not to say that Buchanan is right in all things”€”but he does represent something markedly different from the conservative establishment. Buchanan attracted a large following in the Republican contests of 1992 and 1996, even humiliating anointed frontrunner Bob Dole in the “€™96 New Hampshire primary. Buchanan didn”€™t have enough support to win the nomination, and many of the Buchanan brigaders, evidently including Sarah Palin, later became Bush Republicans. But Buchanan proved that a nonestablishment conservatism can garner significant votes in Republican primaries. That’s a promising beginning. Earlier this year, Ron Paul ran for the Republican nomination on a platform widely at variance with the regnant ideology of the GOP. He too found intense support: about 1.2 million Republicans supported him in the primary season, and by the fourth quarter of 2007 his grassroots fundraising put all the other Republican candidates to shame. Paul’s campaign proved that there is a donor base willing and able to finance insurgent, anti-establishment Republicans.

Nationalism is What We Need Now”€”The Case for an “€œUnpatriotic Conservatism”€

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Nationalism is What We Need Now”€”The Case for an “€œUnpatriotic Conservatism”€

In most intellectual circles on the right, as well many in the center and on the left, it is fashionable to damn nationalism. Among conservatives, patriotism is held to be something almost always worthy of praise”€”though exactly what patriotism might entail has never been settled upon. As is so often true, the conventional views of the Left and Right, if not entirely unfounded, are limiting and sometimes simply wrong. The United States, at present, suffers from an excess of patriotism and a generally defective sense of nationalism. European countries, too, would benefit from being more nationalistic, though in the Old World the excess is not of patriotism but of a leftist internationalism that has rendered Europeans helpless in the face of Islamic immigration. In the case of U.S. foreign policy, it has not been “€œjingoistic nationalism,”€ as many critics like to claim, that has driven our country into an interminable and unjust war in Iraq but a genuine, if misguided, patriotism. The United States should act more like a nation among nations: jealous of her own sovereignty and national borders, respectful of those of other countries.

Life Beyond the Party

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Life Beyond the Party

The antiwar, pro-life Right–including Ron Paul, Pat Buchanan, and others who’ve opposed the Iraq War–doesn”€™t fit the narrative that hawks and neocons have built over the past six or seven years. What is that narrative? Essays by Joseph Bottum in First Things and James Hitchcock in the Human Life Review reveal the outline: neocons want to co-opt pro-lifers by convincing them that the bloodshed involved in wars of choice is not inconsistent with an ethic of life that rejects abortion and euthanasia

Huckabee: The New Huey Long

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Huckabee: The New Huey Long

A tax-and-spend liberal like Huckabee has as little chance of uniting the Right as the untrustworthy Romney and socially liberal Giuliani. Ron Paul, on the other hand, already has the support of libertarians and antiwar moderates.

The Kirk Wars Continue

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The Kirk Wars Continue

The New Republic is about the last place anyone would look for a fair reading of traditionalist conservatism. The magazine’s review pages are often outstanding, with such contributors as American historian Gordon S. Wood and classicist Peter Green, and its exposes of Republican crooks can provide almost as much satisfaction to principles conservatives as to liberals. But let’s be clear: The New Republic started out as Herbert Croly’s vessel for evangelizing the gospel of foreign interventionism and modern liberalism, and in the 93 years since then it has changed very little. The political environment has changed considerably, however, and Croly’s then-newfangled liberalism is nowadays hardly distinguishable from what’s called neoconservatism. The difference is that The New Republic continues to court the center-left, while the neocons have occupied the center-right. Lately TNR’s approach hasn”€™t been working out so well, as hard Leftists have decided that they”€™ve had enough of these hawkish liberals and have canceled their subscriptions in droves, resulting in a dizzying decline in the magazine’s readership.


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