Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Natpop vs. Platpop

Mr. Postmodern Conservative contributes to contemporary cultural criticism with cool names for two kinds of emerging populism. There must be something to what he says. No less an expert than Tocqueville employed both national greatness and localism to give moral fiber to middle-class society--to get people to think of themselves as something more than beings with interests. And we can say that the communal platoon (Burke) and patriotism are both attempts to give the bohemiamism of bourgeois bohemiamism some real substance. But don’t we have to add that national greatness, for now, has been discredited by the failure of the Iraq adventure? And platoonism--which overlaps with conservative crunchiness--is basically an elite phenomenon that flourishes among the overeducated and underemployed. The ecological or resource self-sufficiency populism promoted by Dr. Pat is not really popular with the actual people at this point.

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