Politics

How Conservatives Learned to Quit Worrying and Love the Imperial Presidency

|

Gene Healy tells the tale.

NEXT: Face the Thing That Should Not Be

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. It would be nice if posts contained snippets of relevant material from the page being linked…internet filter at work blocks many links…

  2. Nice piece. If it hadn’t briefly mentioned the 22nd Amendment, I’d say it ignored the 800 pound gorilla in the middle of the room–Franklin D. Roosevelt.

    We can argue all day about what the word “conservative” means now, but I remember when it meant trying to undo the damage Franklin D. Roosevelt inflicted on our nation. …and opposing communism.

    Sure, conservatives were happy to bring culture warriors onto the bandwagon–whether it was people railing against “dirty hippies” during Vietnam or “latte swilling liberals” during Iraq. …but back in the Reagan/Bush the Greater Era, I always thought of the culture war folks as fellow travelers at most.

  3. Jefferson: “In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the constitution.”

    ‘nuf said

  4. Jefferson was a Democrat, and therefore un-American. Probably a terrorist, too (a sympathizer, in any case).

  5. Not to mention that ole TJ was, by his own writings, a NON CHRISTIAN! GASP!

    He respected Jesus as a philosopher but rejected any claims of his divinity.

  6. Scoob, true that Jeff was a Dem but that isn’t the same party we know and love today.

  7. “Jefferson was a Democrat, and therefore un-American. Probably a terrorist, too (a sympathizer, in any case).

    I remember hearing people complain (during and before Reagan’s first election) that there was more of a difference between the liberal and conservative wings of the major parties than there was between the parties themselves.

    Yes, there used to be conservative Democrats and liberal Republicans, more of the former than the latter. Prior to Reagan, the South voted as a block, and they always voted for the Democrats. Much of the culture war conservativism we see in the Republican party today is, I believe, a function of bringing what were historically conservative Democrats into the coalition.

    …and if I had to point to the historical roots of their anti-Presidential authority impulses, I’d point, certainly, to desegregation and I’d probably point to the Civil War and reconstruction as well.

  8. Prior to Reagan, the South voted as a block, and they always voted for the Democrats.

    Not in Presidential politics.

  9. “This is nothing less than the totalitarian philosophy that the end justifies the means?. If ever there was a philosophy of government totally at war with that of the Founding Fathers, it is this one.”

    Fo shizzle.

  10. Prior to Reagan, the South voted as a block, and they always voted for the Democrats.

    Prior to 1948 they always voted Democrat. Between ’48 and ’72 they voted for the “Dixiecrat” candidate if there was one, and the deep south even voted for Goldwater in ’64. After ’72, almost always Republican except for when Carter (a southerner) ran.

  11. TJ started the war on Islamofascism.

  12. I guess I should save my sarcasm for those who can appreciate it.

  13. Scooby

    Jefferson was a Democrat, and therefore un-American. Probably a terrorist, too (a sympathizer, in any case).

    You may be on to something. Remember that TJ owned a Qur’an!!!

  14. Just for the record, I got the sarcasm.

  15. Just for the record, I got the sarcasm.

    Me too. I even smiled.

  16. Pwned the Q’ran, did you say?

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.