It is not that I disagree with Mr. Sullivan's defense of Keynesian economics, here-and-now or otherwise. To the contrary, I agree with it, as far as it goes, just as I agree with Mr. Sullivan that pot should be legal, that marriage equality is a civil right, that our health care system is an abomination that is crushing the poor and middle class, that income inequality is a disaster for the health of our democracy, that immigration reform is long, long overdue, that we are drowning in well-funded monsters who sell guns and fear to rubes as if they were the Kiwanas slinging flapjacks on Pancake Day, that we are roasting our planet and maybe we should do something about that.[Keynesian economics at a time of special economic peril in which the general rules of economics don’t apply and are, in fact, counterproductive] is not an eternal ideology – determined as “on the left” and therefore impermissible on the right or center. It’s a specific analysis of a specific problem, which happens to be where we are now. A true conservative would throw ideology aside and look at the real world. Which is the difference between today’s GOP and a genuine conservative, like Bruce. I’m not a Keynesian for ever. But I am a Keynesian for now"
-- Andrew Sullivan, May 7, 2012
I agree with Mr. Sullivan broadly on all of those subjects.
What I thoroughly disagree with is the transparently ridiculous dorm-room-bong-a-thon fig-leaf definition of "genuine" or "true" Conservatism that Movement exiles like he and David Frum and David Brooks began to applique over their Bush/Cheney tattoos once the wheels came definitively off of True Conservatism 1.0 during the Age of Dubya.
What I vehemently object to is the fucking absurd idea that, having built their careers riding shotgun with the Conservative dregs of American culture, they now get to Moonwalk away from the burning wreckage that True Conservatism 1.0 left in its wake, pitch their carny tents beneath the sheltering branches of Something Something Whig Something Something Burke and whiiiiiiining about what a great big shame it is that the other 99.9999% of American Conservatives keep getting Conservatism so terribly, terribly wrong.
What I Loudly and Rudely oppose is the precedent that, having spent their adult lives making a buck punching hippies, America's Most Famous Professional Conservatives Public Intellectuals now get to quietly expropriate one long-standing Liberal idea after another without having to pay so much as lip service to the fact that the Hippies were right all along.
The seams and bolts and patches on the Southern Strategy exoskeleton binding together the Right's filthy coalition of plutocrats, racists, homophobes, anti-science goons, anti-woman slugs, gun-nuts and professional pundits have been clearly visible to the unjaundiced eye for a very, very long time.
The fact that it took America's Most Famous Professional Conservatives Public Intellectuals decades to bother to notice the Confederacy-size tumor which had long since eaten the soul out of the Party of Lincoln, shattered its bones and had burst through the Party's skin is hilarious.
The fact that America's Most Famous Professional Conservatives Public Intellectuals now point at that vast, crawly spawning ground which whelped them and gave them professional succor and swears by Almighty Something Something Whig Something Something Burke that none of it is "genuine" Conservatism is even more hilarious.