The Corner

Re: Conservative in Which Sense?

Frank Rizzo, who was mayor when I lived in Philadelphia, was a law-and-order mayor. There was no stronger law-and-order mayor. But he wasn’t a conservative. Ed Meese, my boss at Justice, was not a “law-and-order” conservative. He was a conservative who believed in the rule of law, and at times he was troubled by aggressive prosecutorial tactics used by certain U.S. attorneys. So, the phrase “law-and-order” conservative really doesn’t have any meaning by itself.

I believe you are trying to focus us in a way that seeks to limit our observations about Rudy and the meaning of conservatism. I don’t blame you. As I said, however, taking conservative positions on certain issues, such as law enforcement, doesn’t make you a conservative, in my view. Is Joe Lieberman a conservative because he’s strong on national security? I don’t know anyone who defines conservatism by cherry-picking issues. I understand why some candidates try it — in fact, to some extent, they’re all doing it. But we need not. And my point, underscored by your concluding paragraph, is that Rudy’s supporters insist that we do so — as they must. And that’s okay, but I dissent. Let me put it this way: what is Rudy’s political philosophy? He repeatedly refers to Ronald Reagan, he has appointed Ted Olson to head his judicial advisory committee, but apart from trying to glean his political philosophy through association, what is it?

Back to Fred Thompson. The “senior moment” jibe was the cheap shot, J-Pod. He stumbled briefly, as other candidates have and do, despite their ages. Indeed, as the president does – often. As I said, I heard it used against Ronald Reagan. It’s a demeaning put down suggests infirmity that does not reflect the man. I am not, of course, insisting that you support him or ignore his shortcomings, such as his support for McCain-Feingold (which Rudy also trumpeted). Having written about him 14 years ago and being excited about his entry into the race back in February doesn’t justify the cheap shot, in my view. But if you have concern about “senior moments,” then you might want to interview him again.

Most Popular

PC Culture

‘White Women’ Becomes a Disparaging Term

Using “white men” as a putdown is no longer extreme enough for the Left. Now it is moving on to doing the same for “white women.” How rapidly this transpired. It was less than two years ago that the approximately 98.7 percent of white women working in media who were openly rooting for Hillary Clinton ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Beatification of Beto

The media’s treatment of Texas Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke wasn’t the most egregiously unfair coverage of the past year -- that would be the treatment of Brett Kavanaugh -- but it ranks among 2018’s most annoying. The endless glowing profiles of O’Rourke in every publication from Vanity Fair to ... Read More

A Free People Must Be Virtuous

Dear Reader (Even those of you who didn’t seem to notice or care that I failed to file this “news”letter on Friday), So I’m sitting here at Gate C6 at O’Hare waiting for my flight home. I am weary, pressed for time, in desperate need of a shower, and filled with a great sense of dread for the work ... Read More