Things Aren't What They Used To Be

A meditation at The Federalist.
As I write in my new book, “I Used To Be Conservative: Confessions Of A Conservative Who Used To Be A Conservative Who Used To Be A Liberal,” “I could no longer be a conservative, because being a conservative could no longer be an option.” How true that is.

Sometimes you reach a point—usually when you have something to promote—when what you once thought no longer is what you think now. That point has arrived for me. It’s quite painful, as I’ve said on several CNN programs and YouTube interviews.

The conservatism of today is not the conservatism it was when I was younger, nor is it the liberalism it was when I was middle-aged. I can no longer sit idly by and pretend that what I once believed is what I believe now, or that anyone else should believe it. Or not.


E Hines said...

Of course that's the case. Labels change, even as the underlying principles remain inviolate. Conservatism used to be centered on monarchism and government as father to the child as subject, while liberalism centered on individual liberty, individual responsibility, and commensurately limited government.

Now those labels of conservatism and liberalism have switched places as labels for the steady, underlying principles.

Why would that evolution be a surprise?

Eric Hines

Eric Blair said...

The satire aside, the picture of Max Boot, (who honestly, I never heard of before he started a reoccurring "Why I am no longer a conservative" schtick), is representative of so-called 'conservatives' in the media, like George Will, or William Kristol, or Jennifer Rubin, none of which, I assert were ever really conservatives.

Because, I assert, real conservatives don't seek employment in the media of any sort. They may be right wing, or just not Democrats, but conservative? Naah.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

It's a fun essay even without the Max Boot part.

I'm post-liberal, myself

J Melcher said...

I have decided to reject the label of conservative and embrace, enhance and celebrate the label of "reactionary".

Put it back the way we found(ed) it.

Roy Lofquist said...

Russell Kirk:

"Perhaps it would be well, most of the time, to use this word “conservative” as an adjective chiefly. For there exists no Model Conservative, and conservatism is the negation of ideology: it is a state of mind, a type of character, a way of looking at the civil social order."

E Hines said...

Put it back the way we found(ed) it.

Take the bowlegs out of that, otherwise, "reactionary" will depend on the point of "finding."

Eric Hines