As Kathryn and Andy have noted, the popular radio talk show host (and fellow Cornerite) Mark Levin has written a new book, Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto. It’s very much worth reading. This is the book that Levin was going to write in 2007, but he decided instead to write his deeply personal tribute to his dog, Rescuing Sprite. The sequence of events was fortuitous. I say that because conservatives are now at one of those moments when they need to remind themselves, in a systematic way and on a fairly deep level, what their core beliefs are. Liberty and Tyranny does that, with chapters devoted to the Constitution and federalism, the free market, the welfare state, foreign policy, and much else.
The book is informed, serious, and accessible. The purpose of Liberty and Tyranny isn’t so much to advance a 10- or 15-point program (though it includes a short summary at the end of the book); it is, rather, to lay out the basic principles of conservatism, argue why they are worthwhile, and why they must prevail against contemporary liberalism (or statism, to use Levin’s preferred locution). There is a (mostly) healthy debate going on right now about how conservatism should position itself in order to both regain power and advance its animating principles. There are intelligent people of good will on various sides of this discussion; Levin’s new book will now be part of it. That’s good for everyone involved, even for those who will not agree with him on all of the particulars.