The National Greatness Progressive Conservative damns Newt, both intentionally and un:
Of all the major Republicans, the one who comes closest to my worldview is Newt Gingrich. Despite his erratically shifting views and odd phases, he continually returns to this core political refrain: He talks about using government in energetic but limited ways to increase growth, dynamism and social mobility.
As he said in 2007, "It's not a point of view libertarians would embrace, but I am more in the Alexander Hamilton-Teddy Roosevelt tradition of conservatism. I recognize that there are times when you need government to help spur private enterprise and economic development." […]
His 1984 book, "Window of Opportunity," is a broadside against what he calls the "laissez-faire" conservatism — the idea that government should just get out of the way so the market can flourish. As he wrote, "The opportunity society calls not for a laissez-faire society in which the economic world is a neutral jungle of purely random individual behavior, but for forceful government intervention on behalf of growth and opportunity."
But Brooks isn't backing him, because of unsuitable temperament, and because "Gingrich loves government more than I do." (Ouch!)
[H]e would severely damage conservatism and the Republican Party if nominated. He would severely damage the Hamilton-Theodore Roosevelt strain in American life.
Wow, that's the first convincing argument in favor of Gingrich I've heard….
Speaking of Alexander Hamilton, Walter Russell Mead had a pretty interesting piece the other day (with much discussion of Ron Paul) making the case that America has had too much Hamilton and not enough Jefferson for far too long. Sample:
[T]he Hamiltonian-social democratic synthesis of the twentieth century is not adequate for the times in which we live. Corporatism has bred the kind of cronyism and corruption Jeffersonians have always feared. The alliance of the wealthy and the elite with strong state power is creating class divisions and class conflict. The remoteness of the federal government from popular control (to be one of 300 million citizens is to have no effective control over the governing power) threatens to hollow out Americans' sense of self reliance and independence while keeping most people at a great remove from any real exercise of political power.
Some of the problems we face are due to essential defects in Hamiltonianism, against which a Jeffersonian revival is our only safety. The unchecked Hamiltonian ascendancy of the twentieth century has led to a lopsided America. A revival of the Jeffersonian element in American political thought and practice is essential to our national health.
Whole thing, worth a read, here.