.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

John Adams Blog

The blog of The Antient and Honourable John Adams Society, Minnesota's Conservative Debating Society www.johnadamssociety.org

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


The John Adams Society

April 20, 2005

A conservative ought to be a pessimist, at least about human nature, human society, and the prospects for improving them. – John Derbyshire

IN FREE TO CHOOSE, Milton Friedman pointed out that the 1928 platform of the Socialist Party of America is pretty much all government reality now. And that was twenty years ago. Since then, a Republican Administration and Congress has enacted an enormous new health care entitlement and federalized large portions of elementary and secondary education, all while being called, and believed by many to actually be, the most right wing cabal the world has ever seen.

And the outlook is worse. In nearly every other developed country, America’s Republican party would be considered a right wing fringe group, and its Democratic party right-of-center. Our youth face a constant barrage of leftist propaganda from their teachers and the popular media. To believe we can resist this tide is folly.

ON THE OTHER HAND, leftism is intellectually dead. They see only defeatism abroad and defense of the static quo at home. They have no ideas and no debates, (where is their John Adams Society?). The College Republicans are booming, articulate, energetic and peaceful, while campus leftists are shrill, pie-throwing slobs. And our side has better looking women, a leading political indicator if there ever was one.

THE CHAIRMAN, who rarely sees a half empty glass for long, has called for a debate to settle the question:


The Debate will be held on Wednesday, April 20, 2005 at the University Club, 420 Summit Avenue, in Saint Paul. The Chancellor will preside over drinks beginning at seven o'clock p.m. The debate will begin at half past seven. While there is no dress code for attendance, gentlemen who wish to speak must wear a tie; ladies should adhere to a similar sartorial standard. For those gentlemen who arrive tieless yet wish to speak, fret not: the Purveyor of Ties will keep on hand at least one of his quite remarkable ties for just such an eventuality. Questions about debate caucus procedures or about the John Adams Society itself may be directed to the Chairman at 612-709-1168 or the Secretary at (612) 204-5615.


Blogger Sloanasaurus said...

If you missed this debate you missed a good one. The Resolution failed on a tie vote. However, there was great debate on both sides. Although, I am not yet convinced that the Republican party as a Marxist/Leninist offshoot as was argued by one of the members.

More later....

9:13 AM, April 21, 2005  
Blogger Craig Westover said...

I was frankly surprised by the timidity of faith in conservatism shown by some speakers on both sides of the resolution and the willingness of some to let society’s snap-shot definitions of conservatism determine the health of the (supposedly) non-relative essence of “true” conservative beliefs.

What is frightening is that timidity of faith in one’s beliefs is what causes one to legislate one’s values rather than live them. This is why I believe conservatism, while it has not peaked, has plateaued. It is hard to attract people to conservatism if its proponents have so little faith in its principles that it must legislate them rather than demonstrate them.

Today’s conservative thinks that to preserve his ability to live like a conservative, he must rule like a liberal.

I see little difference between the liberal whine that economic inequality and racial and sexual discrimination make social justice impossible (therefore we must curtail economic freedom and impose equality) and the whine I heard from some that liberal bias in the media and secularization of society means that conservatism had peaked (therefore we need to formally instill conservative values of faith through political power).

Conservatism -- the non-relative kind that has courage of its conviction and uses new experience to exercise its conviction -- has not peaked. The striving for individual freedom is too strong in the souls of men to ever peak. All conservatism lacks is supporters with the courage to not only live like conservatives, but rule like conservatives -- that is with minimal economic and social influence on the lives of others.

2:38 PM, April 21, 2005  

Post a Comment