During my morning reading I was struck by a thought: "conservatism" seems to no longer have home. It was inspired by a pair of specific pieces: Is Capitalism Killing Conservatism? by Ross Douthat in the New York Times (Subscription); and How to talk to insurrectionists and conspiracy theorists on CNN. This in the midst of the devolution of the GOP, McConnell's pledge to obstruct everything Biden proposes, the "canceling" of Liz Cheney and Mitt Romney, the recall of Gavin Newsom, and the continued existence of QAnon post Trump.

This may seem like disparate inspirations for the question, but it follows a statement by Douthat in his piece (as usual, thoughtful but wrong), "This is a specific version of a longstanding argument about the tensions between traditionalism and capitalism, which seems especially relevant now that the right doesn’t know what it’s conserving anymore." This is really my premise. The current GOP is no longer conservative, in any normal sense of the word.

Trumpism is a peculiar amalgam of self-contradictory impulses, but it is not conservatism, yet it now controls the GOP - or more accurately Grand QAnon Nazi Party. But its viability as a movement is based upon the separation of its adherents from the community, hence the relevance of the second piece 2, "How to talk..." The problem, as I see it, is that Republicans no longer have an organizing principle. It doesn't connect with traditional values, or even reality, anymore, and has no credibility. Without that, I think, it has created a void where conservative thought (such that it ever was) used to reside. Can, and should, it be resurrected?


A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich