David Frum's Memory

If you need a reason for why a fair portion of conservative voters were disenchanted enough with the Republican Establishment to head over to Donald Trump's place, take a look at the final paragraph of David Frum's cover essay in the September issue of Commentary, “Is It 1968?” Continue Reading »

The Conservative Lawyers versus the Never Trumpers

I yield to no one in my recoil from Donald Trump. But for anyone who shares the perspectives of the Republican Party, far more is involved here than aversion to an implausible candidate. A conservative should have an interest in repealing and replacing Obamacare, a program that tends inexorably to the political control of medicine. Continue Reading »

Does the Goldwater Comparison Really Hold Up?

Goldwater by 1964 was the unquestioned leader of the emerging conservative movement. Trump, by contrast, has channeled a populist impulse that has yet to become a movement. It’s true that his candidacy has resonated deeply with a segment of the population and has similarities with other right-wing, anti-immigrant movements in Europe. But at this point he heads a personal, candidate-centric campaign. Continue Reading »

Echoes of Phyllis Schlafly

Schlafly deserves to be remembered for what she actually was. She was a brilliant student. She was a stay-at-home mother who launched a full-time career as a political activist and public speaker from nearly the day her first child was born, doing a neat end-run around the feminists who claimed to have invented the idea that a married woman could have a professional life. She was a formidable debater and a prolific author to the very end. Continue Reading »

We Have A Country

It was never about small government. That is the bitter lesson many conservatives have learned, as they have seen Republican-leaning voters opt for a candidate who promises mass deportations and protectionism. That’s the bad news. The good news is that, when conservatives were winning, they were . . . . Continue Reading »

Is Liberalism a Heresy?

The only viable vehicle of conservatism in modernity is a market-oriented liberalism that regards freedom within law as the means to the common good. Some religiously engaged conservative intellectuals cannot accept this. What drives their animus against the only workable form of conservatism in . . . . Continue Reading »

The Losers' Elegist

Russell Kirk: American Conservativeby bradley j. birzerkentucky, 608 pages, $34.95 Drive up Route 131 from Grand Rapids, veer east of the Manistee National Forest, and you come to the village of Mecosta. This is a tiny hamlet of nineteenth-century settlement, much reduced from its ancient . . . . Continue Reading »