Another refugee….

Another refugee…. May 24, 2012

from the Thing that Used to be Conservatism.

The crazy carnival of lunacy that is now what passes for “conservatism” is a sort of mirror image of the thing it hates. No thanks. Choosing between it and the Faith is like choosing between a stay at a madhouse or the House of Tom Bombadil. It doesn’t even require a moment’s thought.

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  • I dunno, I can barely handle the rhyming for those few chapters…subjecting me to it for a day or more might lead me to actually need the madhouse.

    Plus, the man wears yellow boots. Yuck. 😉

  • ivan_the_mad

    It’s a bit much of a rant for my tastes, but his point is certainly valid. He mentions The American Conservative as a truly conservative magazine, to which I’d add Chronicles.

  • David Davies

    I have Fumento’s book on AIDS. Good read.

    He does have a thing or two wrong in this article. He says:
    “But while the new right screams the most about big government, it nonetheless supported President George W. Bush as he presided over the largest expansion of government spending since uber-liberal FDR …” Well, LOTS of us were very unhappy over the inability or unwillingness of the Bush Admin to reign in the spending. And we said so, as often and as loud as we could. Bush was no conservative.

    If a conservative shrieks in a forest of the deaf, does he make any sound?

    As for kerfluffle over Sandra Fluke (who is 30 and not 23, btw) I think it ill-mannered to call people names. Period. That being said, what does it tell you about the character of the woman that she wants us to cough up for her birth control? Should we buy her a room as well? “Hey buddy, can you help me and my boyfriend with the cost of the motel so we can shack up for the weekend?” ‘Slut’ is descriptive here, isn’t it? So Rush failed in etiquette but was dead on accurate.

    • ivan_the_mad

      I think that the operative phrase here is “new right”, since his point is that the “new right” really isn’t conservative and therefore had no objection to the profligate spending of the W years.

    • Ted Seeber

      Look, I’m a member of the all non-marital sex is rape, especially if you use contraception crowd myself, but even I think Rush goes way too far.

  • To seriously respond to the article, though, this really caught my eye:

    ” But, based on my own conversations with liberals, I think –nay, I know –that if more of these allegedly godless, treasonous people understood real conservatism a lot would embrace many conservative positions.”

    A year ago I considered myself liberal, largely because my experiences with conservatives (including the ones I knew in real life) were like these: screaming attacks that I must be some kind of idiot rather than trying to actually reason with me. So the (poor) logic of the liberals won out over the constant screeching of conservatives. I knew how to avoid the screeching on the left but it’s all I knew about the right.

    I am still registered Democrat, but I will be changing that. Not to Republican, though. I feel like there is no place for me on the political spectrum at all. I know I’m not alone.

    • I know exactly how you feel. This is where I’m at, too.

    • Ted Seeber

      I’m Catholic first- political second. And that’s why I’m likely to be voting third party again; though Virgil Goode’s record on immigration is a bit outside my recent “informed conscience” flip-flop on that issue.

      • ivan_the_mad

        I agree with that. I’m leaning towards Goode but find their immigration plank (along with a few others) to be problematic. Ditto on the “informed conscience” flip-flop on immigration. The Church says WHAT??? 😛

  • I would suggest that conservatism, like everything else, simply has evolved. Those who say that Conservatives were the first to be mean, or yell, or scream, seem to forget the heyday of the daytime talk shows of old. Limbaugh, for all his ways, was simply an answer to what people saw in their living rooms every day, but aimed at traditional values; dare I say, conservative values. But I’m sure they weren’t the first. Seems to have been changing for a long time, and if nothing else, conservatives, and probably more than just conservatives, have become what was once so widely condemned.

  • Merkn

    Is the tone of some of your criticisms of “torturers” and the “thing that used to call itself conservatism” really all that much different from Michelle Malkin’s references to some liberals as “moon bats”, and some of the other writers that MR. Fumento criticizes. How about the American Spectator for which Mr. Fumento used to write? His excellent AIDs article was captioned “this Magic moment” on the magazine’s cover – a nasty personal reference to Magic Johnson who had recently been diagnosed with AIDs. This same magazine ran the David Brock Anita Hill article characterizing her as ” a little nutty and a little slutty”. Political writing can get pretty rough and tumble. We can all tone it down a little bit. Articles like this one or the calls for”civility of discourse” that we often hear from the left strike me as instances of ignoring the planks in our own eyes. Likewise, just because their are conservatives {or liberals, for that matter} that may not accept the fullness of the catechism as we Catholics do doesn’t mean we have to pronounce the whole group of them excommunicate and anathema.

    • ivan_the_mad

      I think the contention of the article was less about shrill tones or harsh wording (although the author does disapprove of that) than that the “new right” seems to be about little else.

    • I’ve come to realize that how close one is to the Catholic Church and its teachings matters little when it comes to whether or not one is dismissed or lauded.

  • Merkn

    I took the point to be that because they took an intemperate tone we can assume they have nothing of value to say at all. I don’t think that is fair. Malkin, Limbaugh and even Coulter make some sound arguments based on evidence and reason if you take the time to look.. They also take unpopular stands on issues of great importance to us such as religious freedom and against legalized abortion. They have been subjected to awful personal vilification for doing so. Are their responses over the top? Sure. Have they been intemperate . Yes. And we should condemn their arguments when they go over the line. But to dismiss them en masse as unworthy – – that “thing” – – based on these unfortunate excesses is shortsighted,and unreasonable.

  • The author of the article is angry at the rhetoric and discourse against political adversaries. One of the many terms he is offended by is “tyrant.” As is, disagree w the president all you want, but don’t resort to calling him a “tyrant.”

    Wouldn’t this author be offended by this blog’s cries to “Resist the tyrant”?

    • Mark Shea

      Yep. And we disagree there. But he’s still got a point about the brainlessness of the thing that used to be conservatism.

  • Elaine S.

    I am no fan of Obama, I believe he is one of the worst presidents ever and I hope and pray he DOES NOT get reelected. That said, I am continually amazed at the lengths to which some conservatives go to find something offensive in absolutely everything he says or does, even when it’s entirely appropriate. Here’s a recent example taken from The Daily Caller website:

    (The quotes regarding Mitt Romney about halfway through the story were NOT from the commencement speech but from an earlier press conference in Chicago)

    So, according to this website, when Obama told the Joplin High School Class of 2012 that “We’re stronger together than we are on our own” it was really a super double secret code word designed to turn them all into an army of socialist zombies! What next — will The Daily Caller decide that anyone who wears blue must be a liberal Democrat, that anyone who takes pictures of a rainbow after a storm is a closet gay activist, or that anyone who uses the word “choice” in a sentence is an abortion-loving feminazi?

  • Mark R

    Yes. I remember when there were conservatives in both of the major parties but the Republican party was chiefly a party for grownups. The thing that used to be C. is really almost the worst imaginable parody of real C. that liberals high on whatever could dream up.

  • Conservatism is still alive and well. The problem is the so-called neo-cons have taken centre stage and have control of the GOP. I assert that the “neo-coms” of the GOP and the “commie-libs” of the Democrats aided and abetted by the MSM, have done more to divide and polarise.

    I know, I know…name calling…I know. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

    • Dan C

      I am closer to a commie than the Democrats. It actually insulting to those of us further left to be lumped with such clear oligarchical capitalists like Obama.