With the Trump administration careening from controversy to controversy, the denizens of Capitol Hill confirming the people’s low opinion of Congress, and much of elite media validating suspicions that they view themselves not primarily as reliable chroniclers of events but as a valiant political vanguard, it is easy to overlook the ideological pincer movement besieging classical liberalism from left and right.
Following a week of relentless criticism from the mainstream media for ham-handed and vacillating responses to the neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville, President Trump saw his approval rating rise slightly. It’s as if elites have one agenda, and a significant part of the public another.
Much has been written and said about a possible Russian connection to Donald Trump during the presidential campaign last year.
A grand jury convened by Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III has indicted an unidentified person on unspecified charges in Mueller’s off-the-rails investigation into the Trump campaign’s hypothesized electoral collusion with Russia, according to media reports.
According to prominent members of the progressive elite — and a few members of the conservative elite — the election of Donald Trump signaled the rise in the United States of fascism or racism or both.
To mark the close of 2017, we asked a handful of our writers to name the best two or three books they read this year, and briefly to explain their choices.
In his new book, Leon Kass shows Americans how to honor the benefits of liberal democracy, including individual freedom and human equality, while recognizing their high costs.
Conservatives have always had their differences. Uniting them in this fractious age means reconciling two things: freedom and tradition.
Conservatives—indeed, all Americans—should take heart: The constitutional order is showing its resilience. Whether because of or despite President Trump’s numerous executive orders reducing the regulatory burden on business and the tax reform he signed into law in December, the economy is humming. Unemployment, including for blacks and Latinos, is at or near record lows.
In these confounding times, conservatives would do well to recall that modern conservatism is a creature of confounding times. Both the broad school of politics that emerged in England in the 17th and 18th centuries and the mature, post-World War II American variant arose to combat new threats to freedom -- and freedom’s moral, cultural, and religious preconditions.
Patrick Deneen, professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame, has written an angry and breathless polemic against liberalism in the large sense — that is, the school of political thought that holds that human beings are by nature free and equal, and that the chief purpose of government is to secure individual rights.
In “Why Liberalism Failed,” Patrick Deneen contends that today’s liberal regimes deserve to perish because they do not live up to the classical conception of political excellence. But the spirit of his critique clashes with the purpose of the ancients’ examination of the best regime.
[Subscription Required] Of all the strange and remarkable features of politics in the Trump era, among the least surprising is the alliance between conservatism and populism.
Like an individual mixed up about his convictions, a nation perplexed about its principles is prone to self-inflicted wounds. Both are likely to wander aimlessly and choose friends poorly while falling for the blandishments of adversaries. They are prone to misjudge their interests and misconstrue justice. A nation perplexed about its principles exacerbates citizens’ muddle about their convictions.
Of all the strange and remarkable features of politics in the Trump era, among the least strange and remarkable is the alliance that has emerged between conservatism and populism. That it seems so striking to many conservatives reflects a certain disconnection from their tradition. The uncertainty and agitation that the alliance introduced into conservative ranks underscore the importance of recovering a lively appreciation of conservatism’s origins, major ideas, and perennial task.
Many in the United States worry about the erosion of democratic norms. Too few, however, exhibit concern for the steady deterioration over the last half century of the essential democratic norm of free speech.
Today, according to Claremont Institute President Ryan Williams, “multiculturalism and its politics of identity pose an existential threat to the American political order comparable to slavery in the 1850s or communism during the Cold War.”
The divisions among American conservatives have generally been more evident -- certainly to conservatives -- than the principles that might unite them. President Reagan’s two terms are the exception. The pronounced divisions of today are the rule.
Secretary of State Michael Pompeo on Monday launched a commission on “unalienable rights” that will help the State Department determine what it considers a universal human right when deciding to commit American support.