The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

More on that "big win" for conservatism

Also in The New Republic, Jon Chait wrote a piece that follows the post-election weirdness of claiming that it was a big win for conservatism-- just like an actual win would've been a win for conservatism. It doesn't cover any new ground, really, but it's still satisfying to read.

It's because conservatives have an apparatus in place to interpret every election. If Republicans win, it's because they were conservative. If they lose, it's because they weren't. No matter what the facts may be, they will always conclude that the answer is to run further to the right.

No sooner had this year's election ended than nearly every conservative emerged to declare that Republicans had been defeated for betraying the One True Faith. Republicans, George Will wrote, "were punished not for pursuing but for forgetting conservatism." John McCain, who a few years ago was castigating his fellow Republicans for veering too far right, was now accusing them of the opposite, saying they "lost their way" by supporting big government.

Chait should probably acknowledge that Republicans did claim conservatives won-- they were just misrepresenting the Democratic victors. But it's always nice to see John McCain do a 180 on yet another "core belief" of his.