Mr. Brooks muses on the two differing theories of modern conservatism and finally admits that the loons have taken over the asylum.
It’s not so much that today’s Republican politicians reject traditional, one-nation conservatism. They don’t even know it exists. There are few people on the conservative side who’d be willing to raise taxes on the affluent to fund mobility programs for the working class. There are very few willing to use government to actively intervene in chaotic neighborhoods, even when 40 percent of American kids are born out of wedlock. There are very few Republicans who protest against a House Republican budget proposal that cuts domestic discretionary spending to absurdly low levels.
The results have been unfortunate.
Actually, they’ve been predictable. There’s a tendency in any political movement to look for a scapegoat for the problems of the world and blame them, but the Republicans have made it their party platform for the last fifty years. The switch to simplistic economic conservatism, along with a healthy dose of moralistic scolding, has turned a lot of them into grifters, torturers, and intellectual sock-puppets. That’s what happens to people with power without discipline or a sense of duty to others beyond your own tribe.
It’s about damn time you noticed, David.