Magazine November 30, 2020, Issue

‘Conservative’: A Term Up for Grabs

(Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters)
To die, and not to die, for a word

Twenty-five years ago, I met Scott Morris, when we both worked at The Weekly Standard. He asked, “What kind of conservative are you? What is the basis of your conservatism?” I attempted a couple of answers, which did not satisfy him. Scott was an intellectual, who had studied philosophy, including over in Oxford.

Finally, I said to him, “Look, Scott, I’m a simple fellow: I just hate the Reds. Hate, hate, hate the Reds.” He laughed and laughed, and let me off the hook, for a while.

I had made a serious point, however. George F. Will says that the first thing

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During the campaign, Democrats used the coronavirus pandemic as a cudgel against Trump and other Republicans.