Voting for Hillary under the Hamilton Rule

Some Never Trump conservatives are saying they will vote for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump.  Not that they like Clinton.  They are invoking what they call the “Hamilton Rule” from the founder who, in opposing fellow Federalist John Adams, said, “If we must have an enemy at the head of government, let it be one whom we can oppose, and for whom we are not responsible.”

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Similarities & differences between libertarians and conservatives

In the course of an essay on the history and negative consequences of progressivism, Bradley J. Birzer discusses its two main opponents, conservatism and libertarianism.  He gives both what they agree on and what they disagree on.  See what he says after the jump.

Is libertarianism really a major opponent of progressivism, or is it rather, with its dismissal of traditional authorities, a particular manifestation of it?  If conservatism has a communal dimension, as opposed to libertarian individualism, does that put it closer to the corporate emphasis of progressivism?

But here is the big question, highly relevant to the current election:  Given the differences between these three ideologies, does it make sense for a conservative to vote libertarian against a progressive presidential candidate?  Or is the gulf between conservative and libertarian too wide for that?   [Read more…]

Both sides are too nostalgic about the ’50s

Today’s political problems come from both liberals and conservatives being too nostalgic about the 1950’s.  Liberals miss the dominance of unions, job security, and good wages.  Conservatives miss the strong families, social stability, and conservative values.  None of that is possible anymore, and yet both sides are fixated on bringing part of that back, while still opposing the other part.   So argues a new book by Yuval Levin, reviewed by Michael Gerson after the jump.

I would just add that both sides are also nostalgic for the ’60s.  Now even conservatives are anti-establishment, and the left is nostalgic for the good feelings of the civil rights movement and is seeking to replicate that by championing other groups.

I would also propose developing policies that restore what was good about the 1950s from both sides:  economic security for ordinary workers plus conservative social values, two areas that might themselves be related to each other.  Being sure to include minority groups in both the prosperity and the values.  Do you think both sides could rally to that cause?

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Harriet Tubman on the $20 and other money changes

The plan was originally to drop Alexander Hamilton on the $10 bill and replace him with a woman.  But that was before the hit Broadway musical Hamilton.  So Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew decided to replace Andrew Jackson, the Democrat responsible for the Trail of Tears, instead.  The woman to be featured:  The former slave turned abolitionist activist Harriet Tubman.  (See this on her Christian faith.)

Though Hamilton will stay, the back of the $10 bill will feature a tribute to the women’s suffrage movement and will picture a number of early feminist activists.  Details on these and other planned changes after the jump. [Read more…]

The new Clinton, not like the old Clinton

When Bill Clinton ran for president, you might remember, he was the leader of “the new Democrats,” a group that rejected old style Democratic liberalism in favor of centrist, pragmatic policies.  Among his accomplishments as president were welfare reform, the NAFTA free trade agreement, and a tough anti-crime bill.

Also, Bill Clinton signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (whose language now in state bills draws protests and vilification from Democrats); the Defense of Marriage Act (which allows states to define marriage as between one man and one woman, and which does not require states to recognize other states’ gay marriages); repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act (which may have been a bad idea for allowing banks to pursue other commercial ventures); a bill to permit charter schools; a bill to lower the Capital Gains tax, etc., etc.

As Charles Krauthammer reminds us, Hillary Clinton rejects all of those policies of her husband.   [Read more…]

Proof of literacy in Bible days

Liberal scholars arguing for a late date for the texts of the Old Testament say that the Hebrews couldn’t have been literate until after the Babylonian exile.  (Circular reasoning, anyone?)  But archaeologists have discovered a trove of letters written on pottery from a remote military installation.  They are dated around 600 B.C., shortly before Nebuchadnezzar captured Jerusalem.   The 18 letters come from at least six different writers, showing that even ordinary soldiers of the day could read and write. [Read more…]