Conservatives in conflict
(my highlights are in bold)
In the past few months, American conservatism has swerved toward a power-hungry self-righteousness that scares many Republicans. One of the fearful is John Danforth...
Oh yes, conservatives acting conservative does make me very "scared."
...The new GOP agenda seems to be less, not more, freedom. Consider the efforts to bar gay marriage, ban stem-cell research or impose school prayer. Consider thinly disguised appeals by Republicans in Congress for impeachment or even assassination of judges whose rulings they dislike...
Republicans were practically loading the guns of would be "assassins."
...American conservatism has not one but two hearts: one is libertarian, the other authoritarian. One heart proclaims "government must not make me live like others;" the other insists "government should make others live like me." The first heart beats in old-style conservatives such as Danforth and John McCain; the second burns within figures such as John Ashcroft and Antonin Scalia...
This author is the only person in America who refers to John McCain as a conservative. The reason he is so loved by the mainstream media is because he is a "moderate" who is willing to stab his own party in the back.
...It's not surprising that conservatives are making wrong choices...
I love how people who hate conservatives can say a sentence like this with a straight face. Kind of like how you can get an objective opinion of a woman from her ex-husband.
...Authoritarianism as a political concept dates from 1950, when the German philosopher T.W. Adorno and a group of colleagues advanced the idea that there is an authoritarian personality. Because of childhood experiences, such as a distant, rigid father and a smothering mother, Adorno's authoritarians were conformist, submissive, fearful and irrational -- easy prey for a Hitler or a Stalin...
No opinion peace about conservatives would be complete without reference to Hitler.
...That may be happening now, as the Republican majority loses the momentum it gained from its November victory. Or perhaps the authoritarian moment -- what Jefferson, in a similar dark time, once called "the reign of witches" -- will persist a little longer...
I guess that's more creative than just calling conservatives "Nazis" for the one-millionth time.
About the author:
Garret Epps has written a column about keeping the 10 commandments out of school and a book about letting Indians use peyote for "religious purposes." (On the other hand we might have some religion at UC Berkeley if the Supreme Court had allowed the hallucinogen)
He has columns in The American Prospect (liberal rag) and The Nation (another liberal rag).
His salary is paid by Oregonian's tax dollars while he teaches your children his idea of first amendment law at the University of Oregon.
Like asking the mother of a criminal about her son (he's a good kid), asking Garret Epps to give advise to conservatives would be self-defeating. He wants conservatives to lose. He can tolerate Republicans such as McCain, whose campaign finance "reform" probably should alarm any advocate of the first amendment, to give the illusion of tolerance. This is similar to a racist who, when exposed, argues that "some of my best friends are black..."
His column in today's Fishwrapper also takes "liberties" with the facts:
The new GOP agenda seems to be less, not more, freedom. Consider the efforts to...ban stem-cell research...
The Republicans have never made any attempt to "ban" stem-cell research. The President is opposed to federal funding (aka tax dollars) of this research. Private companies can fund their own research as much or as little as they want. (If this equates to a "ban" then obviously the free market has decided that stem-cell research is of little value)
Consider thinly disguised appeals by Republicans in Congress for impeachment or even assassination of judges whose rulings they dislike.
If Mr. Epps has evidence of conspiracy to commit murder or conspiracy to solicit murder then he should alert the authorities as these are crimes. If not, he should stop making wild accusations that he can't prove.
Email Garrett Epps