Good luck, Christopher. Hold to your principles while others abandon theirs. Your father would be proud.
My point, simply, is that William F. Buckley held to rigorous standards, and if those were met by members of the other side rather than by his own camp, he said as much. My father was also unpredictable, which tends to keep things fresh and lively and on-their-feet. He came out for legalization of drugs once he decided that the war on drugs was largely counterproductive. Hardly a conservative position. Finally, and hardly least, he was fun. God, he was fun. He liked to mix it up.
So, I have been effectively fatwahed (is that how you spell it?) by the conservative movement, and the magazine that my father founded must now distance itself from me. But then, conservatives have always had a bit of trouble with the concept of diversity. The GOP likes to say it’s a big-tent. Looks more like a yurt to me.
While I regret this development, I am not in mourning, for I no longer have any clear idea what, exactly, the modern conservative movement stands for. Eight years of “conservative” government has brought us a doubled national debt, ruinous expansion of entitlement programs, bridges to nowhere, poster boy Jack Abramoff and an ill-premised, ill-waged war conducted by politicians of breathtaking arrogance. As a sideshow, it brought us a truly obscene attempt at federal intervention in the Terry Schiavo case.
So, to paraphrase a real conservative, Ronald Reagan: I haven’t left the Republican Party. It left me.
Thanks, anyway, for the memories, and here’s to happier days and with any luck, a bit less fresh hell.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Buckley bids adieu to the National Review
In a fit of pique, the National Review have accepted Christopher Buckley's resignation. Christopher, son of conservative scion William F. Buckley, was forced out after his endorsement of Barack Obama over John McCain. The NRO was flooded with hate mail against Buckley and his traitorous endorsement of "he who should not be named." He tells his story at The Beast.