Toward Real Conservatism

Just Say No to the Neocons

According to most prominent Democrats, the United States is being seriously hurt by the conservatives running Washington today.  While their allegations about the damage being done by those in power may be plausible, what warrants skepticism is the premise behind the allegations.  Do those whom the Democrats criticize deserve to be called “conservatives”?  Given their willingness to accept enormous budget deficits and massive national debt, they do not qualify as fiscal conservatives.  Similarly, their embrace of big government fueled by budgetary pork falls short of the conventional notion that conservatism stands for minimal government.  Perhaps most important, their enthusiasm for Wilsonian interventionism in international affairs falls far short of genuine conservatism.  If these policies can be labeled “conservative,” then what are the “liberal” policies on these issues?

The major role of neoconservatives in shaping relatively liberal policies and bestowing the label “conservative” on the results has contributed to the controversy surrounding the authenticity of contemporary conservatism.  In the international arena, the neoconservatives’ philosophical roots are deep in the Wilsonian-Stimsonian globalist wing of the Democratic Party.  Just as the co-opting of many Republicans by the post-World War II liberal internationalist vision of...

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