George Packer in The New Yorker on the end of the current conservative era:
Only a few years ago, on the night of Bush’s victory in 2004, the conservative movement seemed indomitable. In fact, it was rapidly falling apart. Conservatives knew how to win elections; however, they turned out not to be very interested in governing.
Read the whole article, especially if you’re under 40, to understand how we went from Barry Goldwater and Richard Nixon to George W. Bush.