Very well. Maybe I should have just said “mainstream conservative,” though my point is that what it means to be a mainstream conservative in 2011 was fixed by the resounding success of the fusionist enterprise some decades before. And come to think of it, “mainstream conservative” doesn’t hit my ear right, either. That modifier begs for something like “fringe” or “radical” or “reactionary” as its opposite, suggesting it divides the domain of conservatives into acceptable company and tinfoil-hatters. That’s not the distinction I was after. But I agree, there was certainly a better word out there.
I blame my copy editors, at least until they strike the very sentence you are now reading.