Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

Extreme libertarianism brings out the thoughtful moderation in our Porcher friend. He defends the Straussians and the Neocons from Brad Thompson’s fantastic charge that they are NATIONALISTIC FASCISTS. That means, of course, that any public concern for virtue or the quality of citizens is FASCIST. It also means that anyone who thinks there’s much of arole for government in any way is both a SOCIALIST and a FASCIST. Brad, of course, reminds me of Glenn Beck, but without even Glenn’s nuance and appreciation for some role for religion in who we are as a people.

I will repeat what I’ve said so often: There ain’t any FASCISTS around today worth worrying about. The liberals in the president’s party aren’t FASCISTS; today’s progressives aren’t FASCISTS. Straussians aren’t FASCISTS. Tea Partiers aren’t FASCISTS. PORCHERS aren’t FASCISTS (actually, nobody saying they are unless Brad comes after Pat). HISTORY—the religion of the FASCIST—is dead in any strong sense.

For us all but in different ways, the PERSON is the bottom line, with certain qualifications. The CATO people have forgotten the qualifications, of course. The greater danger today is LIBERTARIANISM UNBOUND—or the inability to think of the PERSON as part of anything greater than himself, as a creature or citizen or parent or friend etc. So I’m with the Porchers against the excesses of creeping and sometimes creepy libertarianism.

Comments are visible to subscribers only. Log in or subscribe to join the conversation.



Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles