Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Is Evangelical Prudence an Oxymoron?

Being to lazy to look for my own posts for now, I’m stuck with observing that I enjoyed Huck’s foreign policy speech posted by Joe. It was as sensible and, in its own way, as tough as those been given by the other candidates. It was "Christian realism" much more than compassionate politcs or unduly optimistic. I also noticed John Kienker’s "quibble" about Jim Ceaser’s NATURE AND HISTORY IN AMERICAN POLITICAL DEVELOPMENT on the Claremont Christmas books page: "Ceaser notes some of the rhetoric in the present-day Repblican party as a sign of hope for a restoration of natural-rights thinking in our politics, but not only has George W. Bush been guided more by evangelical fervor that natural-rights thinking, the gulf between our president’s rhetoric and his actions has regrettably allowed the latter to discredit the former, even within his own party."

Now Kienker endorses the Ceaser narrative of the displacement of nature by history in American political thought. So does that mean that "evangelical fervor" is a version of historicism, in his view? And does that mean that the real objection to Huck is that he is that he’s just another progressivist or historicist? Is Huck just another George W. Bush?

Discuss among yourselves.

Discussions - 3 Comments

I don't see progressivism/historicism or even much evangelical fervor in Huck's speech. I urge everyone to read it whole. Like Peter, I enjoyed it. It is in truth very tough. And there's a real framework for prudence in it. More than was shown by the Bush Administration, and I include Rummy. Huck's overwrought critics are the ones currently symptomatic of feverish evangelical rashness. Something about this reminds me of how conservative critics of Reagan were apoplectic over the second term charm offensive with Gorby.

I think Huck shows a much bigger soul than his context. Rudy's social liberalism is excused because he governed in the context of NYC. Well, Huck deserves at least as much presumptive deference. The Club for Growth types and the Rudy fans up north have the knives out, but thoughtful conservatives need to give this surprising man a very close look. I am also struck that he and McCain have very similar outlooks and tendencies, though different surface temperaments. Peter is right that this could be a team. See this possibility also in the context of the now open discussion of the increasing likelihood of a convention based nomination.

In a panic attack the editors of NR have just written an editorial endorsing the son of Romney of Rambler for being the one person to hold together the "conservative coalition." Is this just Fear of Huck, or is Romney more than a bionically constructed "conservative" who's really a super wonkish Rockefeller Republican?

Robert is dead right to describe NRO in a "panic."

When Bush was waging jihad against the platform of our party, and strong-arming Republicans to line up behind him, then they weren't in a panic. But now, when it hits the fan and it's decision time, and social cons are tending towards a Jesus obsessed Huckabee, now they're in a full-blown panic. And in their panic they invent a fiction about Romney holding the coalition together, {which is rather appropriate by the way, a fiction conjured up to support THE FICTITIOUS candidate}.

And they pride themselves on being serious observers and commentators on the political scene. The endorsement of Romney takes DECADES worth of built up credibility and flushes it.

I knew they were tending towards him; I knew they were puffing him, but still, one can't but be stunned that they actually did it, endorse Romney.

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