Join our mailing list

* indicates required

Tags Matching:

conservatism


  • Originally published 12/08/2013

    The GOP's Mandela Problem

    Rick Santorum compares apartheid to Obamacare, Rush Limbaugh complains about all of Mandela's media attention, and Dick Cheney is STILL defending his vote against sanctioning the apartheid government.

  • Originally published 08/13/2013

    Yale conservatives move into Taft mansion

    NEW HAVEN — William Howard Taft was not born there; he did not live or even die there. But for a few years, the 27th president did own the house at 111 Whitney Avenue in New Haven, and that association has conferred on the structure a certain historical gravitas.Now a group of current and former Yale students is betting the building can do the same for the William F. Buckley Jr. Program, which seeks to “expand political discourse on campus and to expose students to often-unvoiced views.” (It is a goal Mr. Buckley himself might have expressed, albeit with more syllables.)Thanks to $500,000 from a single, unnamed donor, the group will soon move into the William H. Taft Mansion — with a two-year lease and an option to buy — and attempt the transformation from a local undergraduate venture into a conservative policy institute with a presence on the national political landscape....

  • Originally published 08/08/2013

    John Lancaster: 1979 and All That

    John Lancaster is a British journalist.There are years whose impact on human history is apparent to everyone at the time—1776, say, or 1945, or 2001—and then there are years whose significance seems to grow in retrospect, as it becomes clear that the consequences of certain events are still being felt decades later. Everyone who was an adult in 1989 knew straight away that the fall of the Berlin Wall was a momentous event. What, though, if those events were contingent on things that had happened in another, even more momentous year? Christian Caryl’s book “Strange Rebels: 1979 and the Birth of the 21st Century” (Basic) asks the question, What if the really important year in recent history was 1979?

  • Originally published 08/08/2013

    Rick Perlstein: ALEC's Illegal Past?

    Rick Perlstein is the author of Before the Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus, winner of the 2001 Los Angeles Times Book Award for history, and Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America (2008), a New York Times bestseller picked as one of the best nonfiction books of the year by over a dozen publications.

  • Originally published 06/07/2013

    Rich Lowry: Lincoln Defended

    Rich Lowry is editor of National Review. Parts of this essay are drawn from his new book Lincoln Unbound: How an Ambitious Young Railsplitter Saved the American Dream — and How We Can Do It Again, coming out this month from Broadside Books.Decades ago, the distinguished Lincoln biographer David Herbert Donald coined the phrase “getting right with Lincoln” to describe the impulse people feel to appropriate Lincoln for their own political agendas. Anyone who has watched Barack Obama, who as a senator wrote an essay for Time magazine entitled “What I See in Lincoln’s Eyes” and swore the oath of office as president on Lincoln’s Bible, will be familiar with the phenomenon. Democrats like to claim Lincoln as, in effect, the first Big Government liberal, while Republicans tout him as the founder of their party.But the reflex identified by Donald isn’t universally felt. A portion of the Right has always hated Old Abe. It blames him for wielding dictatorial powers in an unnecessary war against the Confederacy and creating the predicate for the modern welfare state, among sundry other offenses against the constitutional order and liberty.

  • Originally published 05/19/2013

    Nicole Hemmer: Right-Wing Fear of Government Isn't Paranoid

    Nicole Hemmer is a research associate at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney. She also teaches history at the University of Miami.Last week’s revelation that the Internal Revenue Service targeted conservative groups was met with near universal disapproval. The IRS singled out organizations with words like "tea party" and "patriot" in their name for scrutiny. In the words of Treasury officials, this focus was clearly “inappropriate.”...Fifty years ago this month, journalists Donald Janson and Bernard Eismann published “The Far Right,” a catalogue of conservative organizations across America. Raising the alarm about the coming conservative threat was something of a cottage industry in the early 1960s. “The Far Right” would share shelf-space with books like “The Radical Right” and “Danger on the Right.” But what separated “The Far Right” from the rest was its revelation of the Reuther Memorandum....

  • Originally published 05/11/2013

    New Canadian Museum of History remains apolitical

    In contracting tender documents, the Canadian Museum of Civilization has provided more details about the kind of history it will focus on once it is transformed, at the edict of the Conservative government, to the new Canadian Museum of History.The lengthy request for tender (see below) posted on the MERX contracting site this week sketched out a storyline of “broad topics and more focused communication intentions” that are grouped into themes and time periods in the Canadian History Hall.There is little evidence in the more detailed descriptions to support concerns that the mandated refocusing of the museum would effectively rewrite Canadian history to emphasize certain values — the military, for example — or, perhaps, embellish the fathers of Canadian conservativism....

  • Originally published 05/09/2013

    Conservatives' interest in Canadian history raises eyebrows

    The House of Commons heritage committee has launched a study of how history is preserved in federal, provincial and municipal programs, and how easily Canadians can access historical information.However, it backed down from a plan to examine how history is taught in schools after a barrage of complaints from the opposition, which had accused the government of intruding on provincial jurisdiction, which includes school curriculum development, and of wanting to revise history in its own image.The committee began hearing from witnesses for its history study on Monday....

  • Originally published 04/09/2013

    The Secret to Margaret Thatcher's Success

    Image via Wiki Commons.The death of Margaret Thatcher, the former leader of British Conservative Party and Britain’s only female prime minister, will intensify the continuous debate over her legacy. No other modern British political leader has proved so controversial. She divided -- and continues to divide -- academic and public opinion more than any of her recent predecessors.

  • Originally published 04/01/2013

    Neil Gross: Why Conservatives Hate College

    Neil Gross is author of "Why Are Professors Liberal and Why Do Conservatives Care?" (Harvard University Press; April 9), a professor of sociology at the University of British Columbia and a visiting scholar at New York University's Institute for Public Knowledge. This post is an excerpt from a longer excerpt of "Why Are Professors Liberal and Why Do Conservatives Care?" published on Salon.

  • Originally published 03/25/2013

    Steven Conn: The Fetish of States' Rights

    Steven Conn, editor of To Promote the General Welfare: The Case for Big Government (Oxford University Press USA/2012), is professor and director of Public History at Ohio State University. Ronald Reagan kicked off his presidential campaign in 1980 with a speech in Philadelphia, Mississippi. It's worth remembering, especially in light of several recent events, why that was so important.Philadelphia was a small sleepy town like dozens of others in the South, brutally segregated according to Mississippi law and customs, just like dozens of others. It became nationally famous -- and symbolic -- when three civil rights workers doing advance work for Mississippi Freedom Summer in 1964 were murdered by some of the local white supremacists. They instantly became martyrs to a heroic cause.Sixteen years later, candidate Reagan didn't mention James Cheney, Andrew Goodman or Michael Schwerner in his speech. Instead, Reagan announced: "I believe in states' rights," and he promised the all-white Mississippi crowd that he would "restore to states and local governments the power that properly belongs to them."

  • Originally published 03/25/2013

    Paul Harvey: U. of Colorado Appoints “Scholar of Conservative Thought”

    Paul Harvey runs the blog Religion in American History and teaches history at the University of Colorado.Thursday, the flagship campus of the university where I teach, the University of Colorado, announced its first Visiting Scholar of Conservative Thought, part of a three-year, privately-funded pilot effort to “broaden intellectual diversity” at the school.Similar efforts are underway elsewhere, including proposals to establish Centers for Western Civilization, new Great Books programs, and the like. Funders typically want to expand beyond their cadre of scholars at smaller universities and private colleges (such as Hillsdale) and push their ideas in the highest reaches of the academic world, at the research universities and in the Ivy League. But of course, even a cursory look at George W. Bush’s cabinet and policy advisors—from Donald Kagan, professor of classics and history at Yale, to economist Glenn Hubbard at Columbia—would suggest that there’s a deeper bench of conservative academics at the most elite institutions than commonly alleged.

  • Originally published 03/22/2013

    Emily Schmall: How the Catholic Church Lost Argentina

    Emily Schmall is a freelance journalist in Buenos Aires who covered the ascension of Pope Francis for the New York Times.BUENOS AIRES — Hundreds of spectators stood through the chilly night in the city's Plaza de Mayo, the iconic park in front of the Catholic cathedral and government palace, to watch a live Vatican transmission of the ascension of the Argentine pope, Francis. The mass finally began shortly after 5 a.m., to a roar of cheers and chanting in unison: ‘Argentina! Argentina!'People wrapped themselves in the yellow and white Vatican flags being hawked alongside Francis buttons, calendars, key chains and posters.While Francis circled St. Peter's Square in the white pope-mobile, two students of the Catholic University, Federico Chaves and Jonathan Tiberio, both 26, swapped anecdotes about the former Archbishop Jorge Bergoglio, an advisor at their campus, who set up a program at the university for students to teach English and computer classes as volunteers in some of the city's poorest slums."We're anticipating change at the Vatican because of what he did in Argentina. He worked with everyone, atheists, homosexuals....He's shown a commitment to bring the church closer to the people, to assimilate it into life," said Chaves, an economics student....

  • Originally published 03/20/2013

    James Jay Carafano: History and the Blame Game Ten Years After Iraq

    James Jay Carafano is director of the Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation....As the world marks the 10th anniversary of the war in Iraq, essays assessing what happened in that conflict and the “lessons learned” abound.  But the lessons drawn are likely to tell much more about how Americans feel about their place in the world today than what really happened a decade ago.As a practicing historian, I know how historians practice.  Rewriting history is our stock and trade.  There are only two reasons to restate the past. The first is the recovery of important new information. In 1974, for example, the U.S. and British governments acknowledged the Ultra secret: that for much of World War II, the allies had been able to read the top secret messages of both Germany and Japan. That revelation sent scholars back to rewrite, because new accounts were needed to interpret what the allies did based on what the allies really knew.

  • Originally published 03/14/2013

    Nicole Hemmer: Guarding the Right's Flank

    Nicole Hemmer, a research associate at the United States Studies Center at the University of Sydney, also teaches history at the University of Miami.To understand what is wrong with today's political right, look no further than the American Conservative Union. The ACU made headlines last month when it snubbed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. A source told National Review that Christie hadn't been invited to the ACU's annual Conservative Political Action Conference, which begins Thursday, because of his "limited future" in the Republican Party.To put that in perspective: The ACU found ample room at CPAC for Sarah Palin and Donald Trump.

  • Originally published 03/14/2013

    Can American Conservatism Be Salvaged?

    Credit: DonkeyHotey.The greatest threat to the United States today is the Republican Party. The once-magnificent organization of Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower has degenerated into a coalition of religious fanatics, gun lunatics, shills for the rich, and libertarian simpletons who hover at the brink of anarchism and would probably like nothing better than to see the United States unable to play the role of a superpower any longer.

  • Originally published 03/05/2013

    Adam Laats: Get In Line, David Barton

    Adam Laats researches and writes about conservative educational activism.What history books should American school children read?Most recently, the history darling-in-chief among many conservatives has been Wallbuilders’ David Barton.  Glenn Beck, Mike Huckabee, and other conservative politicians have praised Barton’s vision of American history.

  • Originally published 02/24/2013

    GOP Leaders are Playing Chicken with the American Economy

    The illustrious House leadership of the Republican Party. Credit: Flickr/DonkeyHotey.In recent months the U.S. economy has been gaining strength. “Weekly Jobless Claims Plunge to 5-Year Low,” announced The Huffington Post. “Home Prices Hit a Milestone,” reported The Wall Street Journal. “Consumer Sentiment Rises,” announced the New York Times.Now that progress is endangered. Republicans have been acting like it’s a great time to drive the economy into a storm.

  • Originally published 02/12/2013

    Amity Shlaes: The Small Presidency

    Amity Shlaes, who directs the George W. Bush Institute’s economic-growth program, is the author of the book Coolidge, forthcoming from HarperCollins.Action is something Americans of both parties demand of their presidents these days. This is natural for Democrats, whose heritage is all action, starting with Franklin Roosevelt and his Hundred Days. But Republicans like energy and a big executive as well. Over the course of the campaign this past year, any number of political stars, including Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana, argued that only an energetic candidate would be up to the job of managing the U.S. fiscal crisis. Mitt Romney worked hard to let voters know his party could beat the Democrats in the legislative arena. He swore up and down that, à la Roosevelt, he would get off to a running start, sending five bills to Congress and signing five executive orders on his first day in the Oval Office.

  • Originally published 02/11/2013

    Where Have All the Real Conservatives Gone?

    Brent Bozell and William F. Buckley in 1954. Credit: Wiki Commons/UCLA Library/LA Daily News.Recent Republican and conservative convocations have displayed one common thing. Those who pass for thinkers and leaders of these intertwined movements think they can keep doing the same things but achieve better results. With the notable except of Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, most Republicans, after sifting through the debris of November 6, think they need new spokespeople and better packaging.The only thing standing between Republicans and the great Reagan landslides of 1980 and 1984 is them. This is a sad commentary on once noble movements. Republican and conservative “leaders” think twenty-first-century Americans are waiting to embrace tenth-century stands on social issues and science, and blustery vague pronouncements on government spending. Does any rational person think today’s Republicans and conservatives bear the slightest resemblance to those who rallied around Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan? Those two icons would not have finished in the top ten in the 2012 Iowa caucus or South Carolina primary.

  • Originally published 01/29/2013

    National Review lauds Timothy Messer-Kruse for Haymarket books

    George Leef writes for the National Review.In the current National Review, John J. Miller has a fascinating  piece about history professor Timothy Messer-Kruse. Messer-Kruse became interested in finding out all that he could about the famous Haymarket Incident, which is an important part of the left/progressive narrative about the plight of labor in 19th-century America. The presumption among historians has long been that the people put on trial were innocent victims of a repressive society. Messer-Kruse believed that himself, until a question from a student caused him to look into the transcript of the trial. He came to the conclusion that the defendants were not innocent after all. Of course, when he wrote about his findings, he was blasted by leftist historians for having the nerve to challenge the prevailing (and politically useful) view....

  • Originally published 01/24/2013

    Garry Wills: Thoughts on the South

    Garry Wills is Professor of History Emeritus at Northwestern. His study of Abraham Lincoln, Lincoln at Gettysburg: The Words That Remade America, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1993....Humans should always cling to what is good about their heritage, but that depends on being able to separate what is good from what is bad. It is noble to oppose mindless change, so long as that does not commit you to rejecting change itself. The South defeats its own cause when it cannot discriminate between the good and the evil in its past, or pretends that the latter does not linger on into the present: Some in the South deny that the legacy of slavery exists at all in our time. The best South, exemplified by the writers listed above, never lost sight of that fact. Where are the writers of that stature today in the Tea Party South? I was made aware of the odd mix of gain and loss when I went back to Atlanta to see my beloved grandmother. She told me not to hold change between my lips while groping for a pocket to put it in—“That might have been in a nigger’s mouth.” Once, when she took me to Mass, she walked out of the church when a black priest came out to celebrate. I wondered why, since she would sit and eat with a black woman who helped her with housework. “It is the dignity—I would not let him take the Lord in his hands.”

  • Originally published 01/14/2013

    Reclaiming Compassionate Conservatism

    Toynbee Hall, a self-sustaining London community spearheaded by the Salvation Army, in 1902. Credit: Wiki Commons.Defeat, like death, concentrates the mind wonderfully. It also liberates the mind. People venture to think the unthinkable, or at least, the impermissible. A new generation of conservatives may be moved to reconsider some ideas that have fallen into disuse or even disrepute. Compassion is one such idea. 

Subscribe to our mailing list