May 09, 2006

Today's Required Reading

Jonah unleashes a classic G-File on the pitfalls of populism:

And it is in this gray area where I think conservatives should maintain a healthy, rather than absolute, skepticism toward populism. It is the first duty of conservatives to say “that’s not a good idea” and “calm down.” It is the first duty of liberals to come up with some whacky idea about how every child should be born with an air hockey table and a lifetime supply of Ho-Hos. When life is unfair to some, we can expect the liberal to blame dark and unseen forces rigging the system against the little guy. It is the conservative’s obligation—when the truth is on his side—to say “lighten up Francis” and “life isn’t fair.” And when would-be voices of the people claim that 2+2 is whatever-the-hell-we-say-it-is or that “the man” should be cleaning up our pets’ messes, it’s the job of the conservative to calmly say—no matter how unpopular or “unenlightened” it may be—no, 2+2=4, now and forever, and pick up your own damn crap.

Read the rest. It's got Jacobins!

Posted by Robert at May 9, 2006 08:06 AM | TrackBack