Saturday, June 16, 2007

In Search of Honest Consevatives....

Litmus Test For The Honest Conservative
by tristero

Digby points to Rick Perlstein's mordant post about the "honest conservative" and I thought I'd chime in.

I hesitate to admit this, but I harbor a strong hope that, all the evidence to the contrary, there really is a prehistoric creature lurking in the mysterious deeps of Loch Ness (although I suspect that a diet of deep-fried Mars Bars has seriously affected its health). But to believe in the existence of an honest conservative?

Let's examine paragraph 3 of Mansfield's essay:

In other circumstances I could see myself defending the rule of law. Americans are fortunate to have a Constitution that accommodates different circumstances. Its flexibility keeps it in its original form and spirit a "living constitution," ready for change, and open to new necessities and opportunities. The "living constitution" conceived by the Progressives actually makes it a prisoner of ongoing events and perceived trends.

To explain the constitutional debate between the strong executive and the rule of law I will concentrate on its sources in political philosophy and, for greater clarity, ignore the constitutional law emerging from it.Mansfield is being highly disingenuous and evasive here.

Take sentence 1: "In other circumstances I could see myself defending the rule of law."

Folks, I don't think it's any stretch at all to conclude from the way this is presented that this sentence is nothing more or less than a rightwingers idea of a funny haha joke. You don't have to ask, "Well, exactly what are those circumstances, Harvey?" Anyone with half a brain can infer that Mansfield, with a certainly approaching 1, can only mean, "If Hillary Clinton was president. I could see myself defending the rule of law over a strong executive."...Can a conservative be, in any real sense, "intellectually honest" or a clear thinker?

Let me put this way. If Mansfield is a conservative, if Morecraft is, if Klinghoffer, Robertson, and Cheney are conservatives, then the answer is, "No, never."

Here's a very simple litmus test. If any conservative is prepared not only to acknowledge that Brady Kiesling was right but actually to hire him, I am prepared to call said conservative "honest." Otherwise, they can all just take a jump in the Loch.

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....And The Truth Shall Set Us Free

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