The Conservative Political Action Committee held its conference over the weekend and it was interesting to listen to some of the speeches which included Rush Limbaugh and a teenager who authored a book explaining the principles of Conservatism. I think that Limbaugh Conservatism is markedly different from the Conservatism of Buckley era. The Limbaugh Conservatism is decidedly NOT libertarian and advocates for restricting individual liberties based on religious, not political, principles. Thus in terms of social policy, the Limbaugh Conservatives are a marked disconnect from the libertarian, or at least tolerant, tradition of the Buckley era. The same disconnect appears with regard to foreign policy. American Conservatism historically tended to be isolationist in contrast to the activism of the neo-cons. Now that the neo-cons have been so thoroughly repudiated by reality, it will be interesting to see what direction their foreign policy will take. Speaking of reality, what do we make of their economic policies now that their cornerstone policy of an unregulated free market has precipitated a second depression? Limbaugh Conservatism produces interesting sound bites, but it lacks coherence and the reality of how miserably they have failed over the last 8 years makes it obvious why the intellectual backbone of their movement are novel writing teenagers (or Bobby Jindal).

One Response to CPAC

  1. InYourFaceNewYorker says:

    I just looked up the video on YouTube and listened to that kid speak. Within thirty seconds I strongly suspected that had Asperger’s syndrome (like with gaydar there are certain mannerisms and voice inflections I just pick up on). Anyway, he seems like a bright kid, but what a shame he has to direct his intelligence towards something so reprehensible as conservatism! Maybe he’ll come to his senses or at least engage in something constructive that has nothing to do with politics… like computer programming or mechanical engineering…


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