National Conservatism and the American Identity Crisis

What does it mean to be an American, and what do individuals owe to the country in which they live?


"Today we declare independence…from neoliberalism, from libertarianism, from what they call classical liberalism. From the set of ideas that sees the atomic individual, the free and equal individual, as the only thing that matters in politics," said Yoram Hazony, author of The Virtue of Nationalism and chairman of the Edmund Burke Foundation, in a speech at the National Conservatism Conference in Washington, D.C. The conference also featured Tucker Carlson, Peter Thiel, and Sen. Josh Hawley (D–Mo.).

But do libertarians really view atomized individuals as the "only thing that matters in politics"? This week's roundtable of Nick Gillespie, Peter Suderman, Eric Boehm, and Zach Weissmueller try to grapple with that question and discuss the increasingly common tendency on the right and left to accuse one's political opponents of being anti-American, whether it's Trump senior adviser Stephen Miller telling Fox News that Democrats will turn the U.S. into Venezuela or it's #RandPaulHatesAmerica trending on Twitter after the Kentucky senator questioned the budgeting specifics of a 9/11 compensation program. They also discuss the trade war, Elizabeth Warren's wealth tax, Peter Thiel's suggestion that the FBI probe Google for possibly providing material support to the Chinese military, and the enduring wisdom of Albert O. Hirschman's Exit, Voice, and Loyalty.

Audio production by Ian Keyser.

Music Credit: Kaiser Friedrich March played by the United States Marine Band

Relevant links from the show:

"The New Conservative Nationalism Is About Subverting Individual Liberty," by Stephanie Slade

"American Manufacturing Is Growing, but Trump's Tariffs Aren't the Reason Why," by Eric Boehm

"Why Elizabeth Warren's Wealth Tax Won't Work," by Peter Suderman and John Osterhoudt

"What HBO's Veep Gets Right About Politics," by Zach Weissmueller