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Conservative tactics…

I’m a little hesitant to quote something that says (essentially), “Conservatives are X”, but this quote from Alan Wolfe’s, of the Washington Monthy’s, “Why Conservatives Can’t Govern”, does seem to express what I have seen “in action” of the conservative mindset well (particularly the leadership):

“Conservatives, from the days of Machiavelli to such twentieth-century figures as Germany’s Carl Schmitt, have, by contrast, viewed politics as an extension of war, complete with no-holds-barred treatment of the enemy, iron-clad discipline in the ranks, cries of treason against those who do not support the effort with full-throated vigor, and total control over any spoils won. From a conservative point of view, separation of powers is divisive, tolerance a luxury, fairness another word for weakness, and cooperation unnecessary. If conservatives will not use government to tame Hobbes’ state of nature, they will use it to strengthen Hobbes’ state of nature. Victory is the only thing that matters, and any tactic more likely to produce victory is justified.”

This comes via the comment section (“Opir Music“) of a recent Krugman post on academic intimidation in Wisconsin. Note in many ways the above quote mirrors the thesis of “The Authoritarians”.

Often you find jems that are as good or better than the original post in the comments. On the other hand, often you lose your faith in humanity.

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