So this is a good defense of the fundamental insight of Glenn Beck (that Woodrow Wilson in particular and Progressives in general are anti-American and anti-Constitutional evildoers) by Glenn’s intellectual mentor. I certainly agree that the sacrifice of the individual to “social expediency” is evildoing or “History” thinking. I don’t agree that it’s so clear that LOCHNER was rightly decided or the New Deal (or most of it) is unconstitutional. I don’t even think government-run health care is (it’s just inefficient and unsustainable). I don’t think that, say, LAWRENCE v. TEXAS (or PLANNED PARENTHOOD v. CASEY) can be incorporated into some “liberal Fascist” model. Nor do I think that Lockean individualism, by itself, can function as an adequate break on Big Government. Tocqueville said, for example, that it’s religion that keeps Americans from believing that present-day persons can be sacrificed for some egalitarian vision of “the indefinite perfectibility of man.” I do think that RJ’s book on Wilson is quite measured and penetrating, and he can’t be held responsible for that racist, priggish, scholarly, and naive president being turned, in Glenn’s hands, into an insane monster.

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Articles by Peter Lawler

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