Monday, May 25, 2009

Larison and the GOP

I think Daniel's "point" is that Republicans are not conservatives, that real conservatives are actually a rare breed, but after that I get confused. If the unthinking (non-ideological in Daniel speak) Republicans are drifting away from the party, as Daniel suggests, then that means that only the ideologically aware remain with the party - which kind of begs the question; if the aware remain with the party, then the party is THEIRS, in all its perfidy and destructiveness. I think Daniel agrees when he says, "they will have to start acting like conservatives, rather than simply calling themselves that." My guess is that most of the ideological conservatives are not at all similar to Daniel, and it is his blind spot in action, not theirs. The party is exactly what most ideologically aware "conservatives" want it to be.

I interpret Daniel as saying that the GOP is the lesser of two evils. After these past 8 years, I have no idea how he can support that position, if that is what he believes. His writing doesn't support it. In my reading of the kind of conservative sites Daniel represents, I find many worthy ideas. I also find the kind of libertarian bigotry to which both Alan and MZ refer. But more than anything else, it is abortion that I believe keeps true conservatives like Daniel from fleeing the GOP. I am sorry for that, sorry that I can't accept their reasoning, sorry that they can't see that taking away a woman's choice is as wrong as locking her up in Gitmo with no rights and no evidence of any wrongdoing. I think as long as conservatives feel they must stick to an anti-abortion platform they will remain outside the discussion of what is right and good for America and for the world, because that discussion is happening in circles from which the GOP has excluded itself. Daniel's best hope, and that of his fellow travelers, is that those who disagree with him on abortion will none the less carry some of his water into those forums where real discussion can occur.

There is some chance of that, no? I mean, look who reads Daniel and FPR - self styled liberals (me, for example) who find much of what Daniel says to be no more than the simple truth.


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