The Stupidity of Modern Conservatism

This post over at the Lew Rockwell blog reminded me of the stupidity of modern conservatives. Time after time, modern conservatives have fought some "progressive" programme only to embrace it as their own a generation later. You now here conservatives talking as if human society would be impossible without the police, apparently unaware that professional police forces are a nineteenth century invention. The war on drugs, a stupid, costly, and civil rights crushing adventure that has made the drug problem far worse than when it was begun, is another progressive programme that conservatives now think we couldn't live without. I actually saw one conservative writing that opium "legalization" in the 19th-century was the first time drugs had ever been legal anywhere, apparently not realizing that they had almost always been legal almost everywhere. Public education is yet one more example.

Is there any programme that conservatives think is so stupid and awful that forcing them to live with it for a few years won't lead them to love it?


  1. A good reminder that ultimately, the 'conservative' label isn't about any particular political program, but is in fact a description of temperament. At any given time, conservatism is aligned with some set of political ideals, but these must change over time to accomodate the basic personality feature of conservatives -- a desire to keep things the way they were in the 'good ole days,' however defined.

  2. As LP says, conservatism has no fixed political principles, despite the endless talk from conservatives about how their foes (be they leftists or libertarians) are "relativists" with no regard for moral absolutes or permanent truths. Whatever bad traits the statist left has, the statist right will pick up in a few decades.

    Mark my words: If President Obama or Clinton were to socialize health care in 2010, by 2050, conservatives will be talking about how a state monopoly on medicine is obviously essential to any nation.

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