Sunday, September 30, 2007

For related and other uses, see Conservatism (disambiguation)
Conservatism in the United States comprises a constellation of political ideologies including fiscal conservatism, free market or economic liberalism, social conservatism,

American conservatism History
The Loyalists of the American Revolution were mostly political conservatives, some of whom produced political discourse of a high order, including lawyer Joseph Galloway and governor-historian Thomas Hutchinson. After the war, the great majority remained in the U.S. and became citizens, but some leaders emigrated to other places in the British Empire. Samuel Seabury was a Loyalist who returned and as the first American bishop played a major role in shaping the Episcopal religion, a stronghold of conservative social values.
The Founding Fathers created the single most important set of political ideas in American history, known as republicanism, which all groups, liberal and conservative alike, have drawn from. The Federalist Party, followers of Alexander Hamilton, developed an important variation of republicanism that can be considered conservative. Rejecting monarchy and aristocracy, they emphasized civic virtue as the core American value. The Federalists spoke for the propertied interests and the upper classes of the cities. They envisioned a modernizing land of banks and factories, with a strong army and navy.
On many issues American conservatism also derives from the republicanism of Thomas Jefferson and his followers, especially John Randolph of Roanoke and his "Old Republican" followers. They idealized the yeoman farmer as the epitome of civic virtue, warned that banking and industry led to corruption, that is to the illegitimate use of government power for private ends. Jefferson himself was a vehement opponent of what today is called "judicial activism". The Jeffersonians stressed States' Rights and small government. In the 1830-54 period the Whig Party attracted conservatives such as Daniel Webster of New England.

Founding Fathers
Daniel Webster and other leaders of the Whig Party, called it the conservative party in the late 1830s. John C. Calhoun, a Democrat, articulated a sophisticated conservatism in his writings. Richard Hofstadter (1948) called him "The Marx of the Master Class." Calhoun argued that a conservative minority should be able to limit the power of a "majority dictatorship" because tradition represents the wisdom of past generations. (This argument echoes one made by Edmund Burke, the founder of British conservatism, in Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790)). Calhoun is considered the father of the idea of minority rights, a position adopted by liberals in the 1960s in dealing with Civil Rights.
The conservatism of the antebellum period is contested territory; conservatives of the 21st century disagree over what comprises their heritage. Thus William J. Bennett (2006) a prominent conservative leader, tells conservatives to NOT honor Calhoun, Know-Nothings, Copperheads and 20th century isolationists.

Ante-Bellum: Calhoun and Webster
Since 1865 the Republican party has identified itself with President Abraham Lincoln, who was the ideological heir of the Whigs and of both Jefferson and Hamilton. As the Gettysburg Address shows, Lincoln cast himself as a second Jefferson bringing a second birth of freedom to the nation that had been born 86 years before in Jefferson's Declaration. The Copperheads of the Civil War reflected a reactionary opposition to modernity of the sort repudiated by modern conservatives. A few libertarians have adopted a neo-Copperhead position, arguing Lincoln was a dictator who created an all-powerful government.
In the late 19th century the Bourbon Democrats, led by President Grover Cleveland, preached against corruption, high taxes (protective tariffs), and imperialism, and supported the gold standard and business interests. They were overthrown by William Jennings Bryan in 1896, who moved the mainstream of the Democratic Party permanently to the left.
The 1896 presidential election was the first with a conservative versus liberal theme approaching the way in which these terms are now understood in the U.S. Republican William McKinley won using the pro-business slogan "sound money and protection," while the anti-bank and populism of the Democratic nominee, William Jennings Bryan, had a lasting effect on his party.
William Graham Sumner, Yale professor (1872-1910) and polymath, vigorously promoted a libertarian conservative ethic. After dallying with Social Darwinism under the influence of Herbert Spencer, he rejected evolution in his later works, and strongly opposed imperialism. He opposed monopoly and paternalism in theory as a threat to equality, democracy and middle class values, but was vague on what to do about it.

Lincoln to Cleveland
See also: Old Right (United States)
In the Progressive Era (1890s-1932), regulation of industry expanded as conservatives led by Senator Nelson Aldrich of Rhode Island were put on the defensive. However, Aldrich's proposal for a strong national banking system was enacted as the Federal Reserve System in 1913. Theodore Roosevelt, the dominant personality of the era, was both liberal and conservative by turns. As a conservative he led the fight to make the country a major naval power, and demanded entry into World War I to stop what he saw as the German attacks on civilization. William Howard Taft promoted a strong federal judiciary that would overrule excessive legislation. Taft defeated Roosevelt on that issue in 1912, forcing Roosevelt out of the GOP and turning it to the right for decades. As president, Taft remade the Supreme Court with five appointments; he himself presided as chief justice in 1921-30, the only former president ever to do so.
Pro-business Republicans returned to dominance in 1920 with the election of President Warren G. Harding. The presidency of Calvin Coolidge (1923-29) was a high water mark for conservatism, both politically and intellectually. Classic writing of the period includes Democracy and Leadership (1924) by Irving Babbitt and H.L. Mencken's magazine American Mercury (1924-33). The Efficiency Movement attracted many conservatives such as Herbert Hoover with its pro-business, pro-engineer approach to solving social and economic problems. Furthermore, in the 1920s many American conservatives generally maintained antiforeign attitudes and, as usual, were disinclined toward changes to the healthy economic climate of the age.
During the Great Depression, other conservatives participated in the taxpayers' revolt at the local level. From 1930 to 1933, Americans formed as many as 3,000 taxpayers' leagues to protest high property taxes. These groups endorsed measures to limit and rollback taxes, lowered penalties on tax delinquents, and cuts in government spending. A few also called for illegal resistance (or tax strikes). Probably the best known of these was led by the Association of Real Estate Taxpayers in Chicago which, at its height, had 30,000 dues-paying members.
An important intellectual movement, calling itself Southern Agrarians and based in Nashville, brought together like-minded novelists, poets and historians who argued that modern values undermined the traditions of American republicanism and civic virtue.
The Depression brought liberals to power under President Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933). Indeed the term "liberal" now came to mean a supporter of the New Deal. In 1934 Al Smith and pro-business Democrats formed the American Liberty League to fight the new liberalism, but failed. In 1936 the Republicans rejected Hoover and tried the more liberal Alf Landon, who carried only Maine and Vermont. When Roosevelt tried to pack the Supreme Court in 1937 the conservatives finally cooperated across party lines and defeated it with help from Vice President John Nance Garner. Roosevelt unsuccessfully tried to purge the conservative Democrats in the 1938 election. The conservatives in Congress then formed a bipartisan informal Conservative Coalition of Republicans and southern Democrats. It largely controlled Congress from 1937 to 1964. Its most prominent leaders were Senator Robert Taft, a Republican of Ohio, and Senator Richard Russell, Democrat of Georgia.
In the United States, the Old Right, also called the Old Guard, was a group of libertarian, free-market anti-interventionists, originally associated with Midwestern Republicans and Southern Democrats. The Republicans (but not the southern Democrats) were isolationists in 1939-41, (see America First), and later opposed NATO and U.S. military intervention in Korea. According to historian Murray Rothbard, "the libertarian intellectuals were in the minority...[and] theirs was the only thought-out contrasting ideology to the New Deal."

Early 20th century
By 1950, American liberalism was so dominant intellectually that author Lionel Trilling could dismiss contemporary conservatism as "irritable mental gestures which seek to resemble ideas."
In the 1950s, principles for a conservative political movement were hashed out in books like Russell Kirk's The Conservative Mind (1953) and in the pages of the magazine National Review, founded by William F. Buckley Jr. in 1955. National Review editor Frank Meyer used the pages of the magazine to advocate "fusionism", the combination of traditional conseratives and libertarians into a unqiue American style of conservatism.
Whereas Taft's Old Right had been isolationist the new conservatism favored American intervention overseas to oppose communism. It looked to the Founding Fathers for historical inspiration as opposed to Calhoun and the antebellum South.
Ironically, as the Democratic Party became identified with the American Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s through 1970s, many former southern Democrats joined the Republican Party, even in the face of greater proportional support for civil rights legislation among Republicans, thereby increasingly cementing the Republicans' alignment as a conservative party. Senator Barry Goldwater, sometimes known as "Mr. Conservative," argued in his 1960 Conscience of a Conservative that conservatives split on the issue of civil rights due to some conservatives advocating ends (integration, even in the face of what they saw as unconstitutional Federal involvement) and some advocating means (constitutionality above all else, even in the face of segregation). Republicans joined northern Democrats to override a filibuster of the Civil Rights Act in 1964. Later that year, Goldwater was resoundingly defeated by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
Out of this defeat emerged the New Right, a political movement that coalesced through grassroots organizing in the years preceding Goldwater's 1964 presidential campaign. The American New Right is distinct from and opposed to the more moderate/liberal tradition of the so-called Rockefeller Republicans, and succeeded in building a policy approach and electoral apparatus that propelled Ronald Reagan into the White House in the 1980 presidential election.
Later 20th century: Goldwater, Buckley, the Dixiecrats
See also: Nixon and the liberal consensus The Republican administrations of President Richard Nixon in the 1970s were characterized more by their emphasis on realpolitik, détente, and economic policies such as wage and price controls, than by their adherence to conservative views in foreign and economic policy.
Thus, it was not until the election of 1980 and the subsequent eight years of Ronald Reagan's presidency that the American conservative movement truly achieved ascendancy. In that election, Republicans took control of the Senate for the first time since 1954, and conservative principles dominated Reagan's economic and foreign policies, with supply side economics and strict opposition to Soviet Communism defining the Administration's philosophy.
An icon of the American conservative movement, Reagan is credited by his supporters with transforming the politics of 1980s United States, galvanizing the success of the Republican Party, uniting a coalition of economic conservatives who supported his economic policies, known as "Reaganomics," foreign policy conservatives who favored his staunch opposition to Communism and the Soviet Union over the détente of his predecessors, and social conservatives who identified with Reagan's conservative religious and social ideals. Reagan, in attempting to define conservativism, said: "If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals -- if we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories. The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is."
It is hotly debated whether the successive Republican Administrations of Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush are truly conservative. George W. Bush campaigned in 2000 as a "compassionate conservative," but in his second term, conservative critics have negatively cited his increases in Federal spending and the Federal deficits; in contrast, he is often lauded by some conservatives for his commitment to conservative social and religious values, tax-cut initiatives, and a strong national defense.

Nixon, Reagan, and Bush
Defining "American conservatism" requires a definition of conservatism in general, and the term is applied to a number of ideas and ideologies, some more closely related to core conservative beliefs than others.
1. Classical or institutional conservatism - Opposition to rapid change in governmental and societal institutions. This kind of conservatism is anti-ideological insofar as it emphasizes process (slow change) over product (any particular form of government). To the classical conservative, whether one arrives at a right- or left-leaning government is less important than whether change is effected through rule of law rather than through revolution and sudden innovation.
2. Ideological conservatism or right-wing conservatism -- In contrast to the anti-ideological classical conservatism, right-wing conservatism is, as its name implies, ideological. It is typified by three distinct subideologies: social conservatism, fiscal conservatism, and economic liberalism. Together, these subideologies comprise the conservative ideology, while separately, these subideologies are incorporated into other political positions.
3. Neoconservatism has come to refer to the views of a subclass of conservatives who support a more assertive foreign policy coupled with one or more other facets of social conservatism, in contrast to the typically isolationist views of early- and mid-20th Century conservatives. Neoconservatism was first described by a group of disaffected liberals, and thus Irving Kristol, usually credited as its intellectual progenitor, defined a "neoconservative" as "a liberal who was mugged by reality." Although originally regarded as an approach to domestic policy (the founding instrument of the movement, Kristol's The Public Interest periodical, did not even cover foreign affairs), through the influence of figures like Dick Cheney, Robert Kagan, Richard Perle, Ken Adelman and (Irving's son) William Kristol, it has become more famous for its association with the foreign policy of the George W. Bush Administration.
4. Small government conservatism -- Small government conservatives look for a decreased role of the federal government, and as well weaker state governments. Small government conservatives rather than focusing of the protections given individuals by the Bill of Rights, they try to weaken the federal government, thereby following the Founding Fathers who were suspicious of a centralized, unitary state like Britain, from which they had just won their freedom.
5. Paleoconservatism, which arose in the 1980s in reaction to neoconservatism, stresses tradition, civil society, classical federalism and heritage of Christendom. They see social democracy, ideology, and managerial society as malevolent attempts to remake humanity.[8] Supporters say that the dominant forces in Western society no longer support conserving the traditions, institutions, and values that created and formed it.[9] Therefore, they say true conservatives must oppose the status quo. In statecraft, they call for decentralism, local rule, private property and minimal bureaucracy.[10] In society, they are traditionalist, support a Christian moral order and proclaim the nuclear family is a wise system. Some like Samuel P. Huntington argue that multiracial, multiethnic, and egalitarian states are inherently unstable. Paleos are generally noninterventionist, arguing that American entry into foreign wars is unnecessary and unwise.

Types of conservatism
Classical conservatives tend to be anti-ideological, and some would even say anti-philosophical, promoting rather, as Russell Kirk explains, a steady flow of "prescription and prejudice." Kirk's use of the word "prejudice" here is not intended to carry its contemporary pejorative connotation: a conservative himself, he believes that the inherited wisdom of the ages may be a better guide than apparently rational individual judgment.
In contrast to classical conservatism, social conservatism and fiscal conservatism are concerned with consequences as well as means.
There are two overlapping subgroups of social conservatives—the traditional and the religious. Traditional conservatives strongly support traditional codes of conduct, especially those they feel are threatened by new ideas. For example, traditional conservatives may oppose the use of female soldiers in combat. Religious conservatives focus on rules laid down by religious leaders. In the United States, they especially oppose abortion and homosexuality and often favor the use of government institutions, such as schools and courts, to promote Christianity.
Fiscal conservatives support limited government, limited taxation, and a balanced budget. Some admit the necessity of taxes, but hold that taxes should be low. A recent movement against the inheritance tax labels such a tax a death tax. Fiscal conservatives often argue that competition in the free market is more effective than the regulation of industry, with the exception of industries that exhibit market dominance or monopoly powers. For some this is a matter of principle, as it is for the libertarians and others influenced by thinkers such as Ludwig von Mises, who believed that government intervention in the economy is inevitably wasteful and inherently corrupt and immoral. For others, "free market economics" simply represents the most efficient way to promote economic growth: they support it not based on some moral principle, but pragmatically, because it "works".
Most modern American fiscal conservatives accept some social spending programs not specifically delineated in the Constitution. As such, fiscal conservatism today exists somewhere between classical conservatism and contemporary consequentialist political philosophies.
Throughout much of the 20th century, one of the primary forces uniting the occasionally disparate strands of conservatism, and uniting conservatives with their liberal and socialist opponents, was opposition to communism, which was seen not only as an enemy of the traditional order, but also the enemy of western freedom and democracy.

Conservatism as "ideology," or political philosophy
Main article: Social conservatism
Social conservatism or "cultural conservatism" is generally dominated by defense of traditional social norms and values, of local customs and of societal evolution, rather than social upheaval, though the distinction is not absolute. Often based upon religion, modern cultural conservatives, in contrast to "small-government" conservatives and "states-rights" advocates, increasingly turn to the federal government to overrule the states in order to preserve educational and moral standards.
Social conservatives emphasize traditional views of social units such as the family, church, or locale. Social conservatives would typically define family in terms of local histories and tastes. To the Protestant or Catholic, social conservatism may entail support for defining marriage as between a man and a woman (thereby banning gay marriage) and laws placing restrictions on abortion.
From this same respect for local traditions comes the correlation between conservatism and patriotism. In the 1920s, William Jennings Bryan led the battle against Darwinism and evolution, a battle which still goes on in conservative circles today.

Social conservatism and tradition

Main article: Fiscal conservatism Economic liberalism
See also: Dixiecrats, Southern strategy, Solid South, Contract with America
In the United States, the Republican Party is generally considered to be the party of conservatism. This has been the case since the 1960s, when the conservative wing of that party consolidated its hold, causing it to shift permanently to the right of the Democratic Party. The most dramatic realignment was the white South, which moved from 3-1 Democratic to 3-1 Republican between 1960 and 2000.
In addition, many United States libertarians, in the Libertarian Party and even some in the Republican Party, see themselves as conservative, even though they advocate significant economic and social changes – for instance, further dismantling the welfare system or liberalizing drug policy. They see these as conservative policies because they conform to the spirit of individual liberty that they consider to be a traditional American value. It should be noted that although libertarians have had closer ties with conservatives, they do not typically believe themselves to be conservative.
On the other end of the scale, some Americans see themselves as conservative while not being supporters of free market policies. These people generally favor protectionist trade policies and government intervention in the market to preserve American jobs. Many of these conservatives were originally supporters of neoliberalism who changed their stance after perceiving that countries such as China were benefiting from that system at the expense of American production. However, despite of their support for protectionism, they still tend to favor other elements of free market philosophy, such as low taxes, limited government and balanced budgets.

Conservatism in the United States electoral politics
Today in the U.S., geographically the South, the Midwest, the non-coastal West, and Alaska are conservative strongholds. However, the division of the United States into conservative red states and liberal blue states is artificial and does not reflect the actual distribution of voters of either stripe. College towns are generally liberal and Democratic. People who live in rural areas and the "exurbs" or suburbs of a metropolitan area, tend to be conservative (socially, culturally, and/or fiscally) and vote Republican. People who live in the urban cores of large metropolitan areas tend to be liberal and vote Democratic. Thus, within each state, there is a division between city and county, between town and gown. [11][12]

American conservatism Conservative geography, "Red States"

Other topics
"Conservatism" is not necessarily opposed to change. For example, the Reagan administration in the U.S. and that of Margaret Thatcher in the UK both professed conservatism, but during Reagan's term of office, the United States radically revised its tax code, while Thatcher dismantled several previously nationalized industries and made major reforms in taxation and housing; furthermore, both took, or attempted, significant measures to reduce the power of labor unions. These changes were justified on the grounds that they were changing back to the conditions of a better time.
Various "Conservative" parties have presided over periods of economic expansion which have been disruptive of previous social and political arrangements, for example the Republican Party in 1920s America, and the Bharatiya Janata Party in late 1990s India.
Political memory can be of various durations, and the traditions conservatives embrace can be of relatively recent invention. The prevalence of the nuclear family is, at most, a few centuries old. Western democracy itself is a late 18th century invention. Corporate capitalism is even newer. The reference to God in the Pledge of Allegiance only goes back to the 1950s. The race-blind meritocracy now embraced by many U.S. conservatives as an alternative to affirmative action would have seemed quite radical to most U.S. conservatives in the 1950s.

Conservatism and change
In the United States and western Europe, conservatism is generally associated with the following views, as noted by Russell Kirk in his book, The Conservative Mind:
There is currently debate over whether the policies of the George W. Bush Administration accurately reflect American conservative values: Peggy Noonan, writing for the Wall Street Journal, recently said, "For this we fought the Reagan revolution? A year into his second term, President Bush is redefining what it means to be a Republican and a conservative.

"Belief in a transcendent order, or body of natural law, which rules society as well as conscience."
"Affection for the proliferating variety and mystery of human existence, as opposed to the narrowing uniformity, egalitarianism, and utilitarian aims of most radical systems;"
"Persuasion that freedom and property are closely linked: separate property from private possession, and the Leviathan becomes master of all."
"Faith in prescription and distrust of 'sophisters, calculators, and economists' who would reconstruct society upon abstract designs."
"Recognition that change may not be salutary reform: hasty innovation may be a devouring conflagration, rather than a torch of progress." Contemporary conservative platform

Main article: Originalism Conservatism and the Courts

Semantics, language, and media
In the late 20th century conservatives found new ways to use language and the media to support their goals and to shape the vocabulary of political discourse. Thus the use of "Democrat" as an adjective, as in "Democrat Party" was used first in the 1930s by Republicans to criticize large urban Democratic machines. Republican leader Harold Stassen stated in 1940, "I emphasized that the party controlled in large measure at that time by Hague in New Jersey, Pendergast in Missouri and Kelly Nash in Chicago should not be called a 'Democratic Party.' It should be called the 'Democrat party.'" [Safire 1994] In 1947 Senator Robert A. Taft said, "Nor can we expect any other policy from any Democrat Party or any Democrat President under present day conditions. They cannot possibly win an election solely through the support of the solid South, and yet their political strategists believe the Southern Democrat Party will not break away no matter how radical the allies imposed upon it." [Taft Papers 3:313]. The use of "Democrat" as an adjective is standard practice in Republican national platforms (since 1948), and has been standard practice in the White House since 2001, for press releases and speeches. It seems to be quite common on conservative talk radio.

Conservatives gained a major new communications medium with the advent of talk radio in the 1990s. Rush Limbaugh proved there was a huge nationwide audience for specific and heated discussions of current events from a conservative viewpoint. Major hosts who describe themselves as either conservative or libertarian include: Michael Peroutka, Jim Quinn, Dennis Miller, Ben Ferguson, Lars Larson, Sean Hannity, G. Gordon Liddy, Laura Ingraham, Mark Levin, Michael Savage, Glenn Beck, Larry Elder, Neal Boortz, Michael Reagan, and Ken Hamblin. The Salem Radio Network syndicates a group of religiously-oriented Republican activists, including Catholic Hugh Hewitt, and Jewish conservatives Dennis Prager and Michael Medved. One popular Jewish conservative Dr. Laura offers parental and personal advice, but is an outspoken critic of social and political issues. Libertarians such as Neal Boortz (based in Atlanta), and Mark Davis (based in Ft. Worth and Dallas, Texas) reach large local audiences. Art Bell held some Libertarian views before his talk show adapted a new paranormal format. Many of these hosts also publish books, write newspaper columns, appear on television, and give public lectures (Limbaugh was a pioneer of this model of multi-media punditry). At a rarer level, University of Chicago psychology professor Milt Rosenberg has been hosting a talk show "Extension 720"

Pew further reports that conservatives and liberals are increasingly polarized in their TV news preferences. The cable news audience is more Republican and more strongly conservative than the public at large or the network news audience. Among regular cable news viewers, 43% describe their political views as conservative, compared with 33% of regular network news viewers; 37% of cable viewers are moderate, compared to 41% of network viewers; and 14% are self-described liberals versus 18% of network viewers.
The audience for the Fox News Channel has grown since 1998, attracting more conservative and Republican viewers. In 1998, the Fox News audience mirrored the public in terms of both partisanship and ideology. However, the percentage of Fox News Channel viewers who identify as Republicans has increased steadily from 24% in 1998, to 29% in 2000, 34% in 2002, and 41% in 2004. Over the same time period, the percentage of Fox viewers who describe themselves as conservative has increased from 40% to 52%.

Contemporary political conservatism — the actual politics of people and parties professing to be conservative — in most western democratic countries is an amalgam of social and institutional conservatism, generally combined with fiscal conservatism, and usually containing elements of broader economic conservatism as well. As with liberalism, it is a pragmatic and protean politics, opportunistic at times, rooted more in a tradition than in any formal set of principles.
It is certainly possible for one to be a fiscal and economic conservative but not a social conservative; in the United States at present, this is the stance of libertarianism. It is also possible to be a social conservative but not an economic conservative — at present, this is a common political stance in, for example, Ireland — or to be a fiscal conservative without being either a social conservative or a broader economic conservative, such as the "deficit hawks" of the Democratic Party (United States). In general use, the unqualified term "conservative" is often applied to social conservatives who are not fiscal or economic conservatives. It is rarely applied in the opposite case, except in specific contrast to those who are neither.
It can be argued that classical conservatism tends to represent the interests of the Establishment. Yet, this is not always the case. Considering the conservative's opposition to political abstractions, the "true" conservative ought never support a contrived social state, be that on the left (Communism) or on the right (Fascism). There is an independent justification of the attitude of conservatism, which tends to favour what is organic and has been shaped by history, against the planned and artificial.

Conservative political movements
Some notable figures in the history of modern conservatism in the United States are:

Robert A. Taft (1889 – 1953)
Strom Thurmond (1902 – 2003)
Barry Goldwater (1909 – 1998)
Ronald Reagan (1911 – 2004)
William Rehnquist (1924 – 2005)
William F. Buckley, Jr. (1925 –)
Alan Greenspan (1926 –)
Pat Buchanan (1938 –)
Dick Cheney (1941 –)
Trent Lott (1941 –)
Newt Gingrich (1943 –)
George W. Bush (1946 –)
Karl Rove (1950 –)
Rush Limbaugh (1951 –)
Bill Frist (1952 –)
John Roberts (1955 –)
Ann Coulter (1961 –)
Sean Hannity (1961 –) Conservative thinkers and leaders in the United States

Intellectual history

Hart, Jeffrey. The Making of the American Conservative Mind: The National Review and Its Times (2005)
Lora, Ronald.; The Conservative Press in Twentieth-Century America Greenwood Press, 1999
McDonald, Forrest. States' Rights and the Union: Imperium in Imperio, 1776-1876 (2002)
Malsberger, John W. From Obstruction to Moderation: The Transformation of Senate Conservatism, 1938-1952 2000.
Patterson, James. Congressional Conservatism and the New Deal: The Growth of the Conservative Coalition in Congress, 1933-39 (1967)
Perlstein, Rick. Before the Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus (2004) on 1964
Reinhard, David W.; Republican Right since 1945 University Press of Kentucky, 1983
Shelley II, Mack C. The Permanent Majority: The Conservative Coalition in the United States Congress (1983)
Wilensky, Norman N. Conservatives in the Progressive Era: The Taft Republicans of 1912 (1965). Political activity

Bell, David. ed, The Radical Right. Doubleday 1963.
Huntington, Samuel P. "Conservatism as an Ideology." American Political Science Review 52 (June 1957): 454-73.
Coser Lewis A., and Irving Howe, eds. The New Conservatives: A Critique from the Left New American Library, 1976. Critical views

H. Lee Cheek Jr.;Calhoun and Popular Rule: The Political Theory of the Disquisition and Discourse University of Missouri Press. 2001. Stresses Calhoun's Republicanism
Crunden, Robert M. The Mind and Art of Albert Jay Nock (1964)
Dierenfield, Bruce J. Keeper of the Rules: Congressman Howard W. Smith of Virginia (1987), leader of the Conservative coalition in Congress
Fergurson, Ernest B. Hard Right: The Rise of Jesse Helms, 1986
Fite, Gilbert. Richard B. Russell, Jr, Senator from Georgia (2002) leader of the Conservative coalition in Congress
Goldberg, Robert Alan. Barry Goldwater (1995)
Judis, John B. William F. Buckley, Jr.: Patron Saint of the Conservatives (1988)
Kelly, Daniel. James Burnham and the Struggle for the World: A Life (2002)
Patterson, James T. Mr. Republican: A Biography of Robert A. Taft (1972)
Rodgers, Marion Elizabeth. Mencken: The American Iconoclast (2005)
Federici , Michael P. Eric Voegelin: The Restoration of Order (2002)
Pemberton, William E. Exit with Honor: The Life and Presidency of Ronald Reagan (1998)
Smant, Kevin J. Principles and Heresies: Frank S. Meyer and the Shaping of the American Conservative Movement (2002) (ISBN 1-882926-72-2)
Smith, Richard Norton. An Uncommon Man: The Triumph of Herbert Hoover (1994) strongest on 1933-64
Tanenhaus, Sam. Whittaker Chambers: A Biography (1997) (ISBN 0-394-58559-3)
Chambers, Whittaker, Witness (1952), a memoir his Communist years Biographical

John B. Bader; Taking the Initiative: Leadership Agendas in Congress and the "Contract with America" Georgetown University Press, (1996)
Berkowitz, Peter . Varieties Of Conservatism In America (2004)
Collins, Robert M. Transforming America: Politics and Culture During the Reagan Years, (Columbia University Press; 320 pages; 2007).
Himmelstein, Jerome and J. A. McRae Jr., "'Social Conservatism, New Republicans and the 1980 Election'", Public Opinion Quarterly, 48 (1984), 595-605.
Micklethwait, John, and Adrian Wooldridge. The Right Nation (2004)
Geoffrey Nunberg, "Language and Politics"
Rae; Nicol C. Conservative Reformers: The Republican Freshmen and the Lessons of the 104th Congress M. E. Sharpe, 1998
Schoenwald; Jonathan . A Time for Choosing: The Rise of Modern American Conservatism (2002) Recent politics

Allan Bloom. The Closing of the American Mind (1988)
Gerson, Mark. The Neoconservative Vision: From the Cold War to Culture Wars (1997)
Halper, Stefan & Clarke, Jonathan, America Alone: The Neo-Conservatives and the Global Order (Cambridge University Press, 2004) ISBN 0-521-83834-7
Stelzer, Irwin. Neo-conservatism (2004) Neoconservatism

Diamond, Sara. Roads to Dominion: Right-Wing Movements and Political Power in the United States. (1995)
Koopman; Douglas L. Hostile Takeover: The House Republican Party, 1980-1995 Rowman & Littlefield, 1996
Lapham, Lewis H. "Tentacles of Rage" in Harper's, September 2004, p. 31-41.
Martin, William. 1996. With God on Our Side: The Rise of the Religious Right in America, New York: Broadway Books. Critical views

Buckley, William F., Jr., ed. Up from Liberalism Stein and Day, (1958)
Buckley, William F., Jr., ed. Did You Ever See a Dream Walking? American Conservative Thought in the 20th Century Bobbs-Merrill, (1970)
Mark Gerson, ed., The Essential Neo-Conservative Reader (Perseus Publishing, (1997)) ISBN 0-201-15488-9
Irving Kristol, Neoconservatism: the Autobiography of an Idea, ISBN 0-02-874021-1
Gregory L. Schneider, ed. Conservatism in America Since 1930: A Reader (2003)
Irwin Stelzer ed. The NeoCon Reader (2005) ISBN 0-8021-4193-5
Wolfe, Gregory. Right Minds: A Sourcebook of American Conservative Thought. Regnery, (1987) See also

Action democratique du Quebec (Canada)
Blue Tory
Conservative Party of Canada
Neoconservatism (Canada)
Neoconservatism (China)
Neoconservatism (Japan)
Red Tory

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Chapaev (film)
Chapaev (Russian: «Чапаев») is a 1934 Soviet film. It was directed by brothers Georgi Vasilyev and Sergei Vasilyev on Lenfilm. It is a story about Vasily Ivanovich Chapaev (1887-1919), a legendary Red Army commander that became a hero of the Russian Civil War. The plot is based on the novel of the same name by Dmitri Furmanov, a Russian writer and Bolshevik commissar who fought together with Chapayev.
It was awarded as "Best Foreign Film" by US National Board of Review in 1935 and Grand-Prix of Paris World Affair in 1937.
By poll of cinema critics (1978) the film is considered as one of the best 100 films in the world history.
After the release of the film, Chapaev and his assistants Petka and Anka became Russian folklore characters. This trio, together with their political comissar Furmanov is present in high amount of Russian jokes.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Bombay Explosion (1944)
The Bombay Explosion (or Bombay Docks Explosion) occurred on April 14, 1944, in the Victoria Dock of Bombay (now Mumbai) when SS Fort Stikine carrying a mixed cargo of cotton bales, gold, ammunition including around 1,400 tons of explosive caught fire and was destroyed in two giant blasts, scattering debris, sinking surrounding ships and killing around 800 people.

Bombay Explosion (1944) The incident

It took three days to bring the fire under control, and later 8,000 men toiled for seven months to remove around 500,000 tons of debris and bring the docks back into action.
The official death toll was 740, including 476 military personnel, with around 1,800 people injured; unofficial tallies run much higher.
In total, twenty-seven other vessels were sunk or damaged in both Victoria dock and the neighbouring Prince's Dock.
Many families lost all their belongings and were left with just the clothes on their back.
The government took full responsibility for the disaster and monetary compensation was paid to citizens who made a claim for loss or damage to property.
During normal dredging operations carried out periodically to maintain the depth of the docking bays one or two gold bars were found intact sporadically as late as the 1970s and returned to the British government.
Once in every few years, gold bricks are recovered from Mumbai harbour, reminding everyone of the great tragedy, even after six decades of the incident.
Mumbai Fire Brigade's headquarters at Byculla has a memorial built in the memory of numerous fire fighters who died during this explosion.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

  Part of a series of articles on Jews and Judaism
Who is a Jew? · Etymology · Culture
Judaism · Core principles God · Tanakh (Torah, Nevi'im, Ketuvim) Mitzvot (613) · Talmud · Halakha Holidays · Prayer · Tzedakah Ethics · Kabbalah · Customs · Midrash
Jewish ethnic divisions Ashkenazi · Sephardi · Mizrahi
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Jewish denominations · Rabbis Orthodox · Conservative · Reform Reconstructionist · Liberal · Karaite Humanistic · Renewal  · Alternative
Jewish languages Hebrew · Yiddish · Judeo-Persian Ladino · Judeo-Aramaic · Judeo-Arabic History · Timeline · Leaders Ancient · Temple · Babylonian exile Jerusalem (in Judaism · Timeline) Hasmoneans · Sanhedrin · SchismsReconstructionist Judaism Pharisees · Jewish-Roman wars Relationship with Christianity; with Islam Diaspora · Middle Ages · Sabbateans Hasidism · Haskalah · Emancipation Holocaust · Aliyah · Israel (History) Arab conflict · Land of Israel
Persecution · Antisemitism History of antisemitism New antisemitism
Political movements · Zionism Labor Zionism · Revisionist Zionism Religious Zionism · General Zionism The Bund · World Agudath Israel Jewish feminism · Israeli politics
Reconstructionist Judaism is a modern American-based Jewish movement, based on the ideas of the late Mordecai Kaplan, that views Judaism as a progressively evolving civilization. It originated as the radical left branch of Conservative Judaism before it splintered. There is substantial theological diversity within the movement. Halakha is not considered binding, but is treated as a valuable cultural remnant that should be upheld unless there is reason for the contrary. The movement emphasizes positive views towards modernism, and considers religious custom to be subservient to personal autonomy.

As in Reform Judaism, Reconstructionist Judaism holds that contemporary Western secular morality has precedence over Jewish law and theology. It does not ask that its adherents hold to any particular beliefs, nor does it ask that Jewish law be accepted as normative. Unlike classical Reform Judaism, Reconstructionism holds that a person's default position should be to incorporate Jewish laws and tradition into their lives, unless they have a specific reason to do otherwise. The most important distinction between Reconstructionist Judaism and traditional Judaism is that Reconstructionism feels that all of halakha should be categorized as "folkways", and not as law.
Reconstructionism promotes many traditional Jewish practices, while holding that contemporary Western secular morality has precedence over Jewish law. Thus, mitzvot (commandments) have been replaced with "folkways", non-binding customs that can be democratically accepted or rejected by the congregations. Folkways that are promoted include keeping Hebrew in the prayer service, studying Torah, daily prayer, wearing kipot (yarmulkas), tallisim and tefillin during prayer, and observance of the Jewish holidays.

Jewish law and tradition
In practice, Rabbi Kaplan's books, especially The Meaning of God in Modern Jewish Religion and Judaism as a Civilization are de facto statements of principles. In 1986, the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association (RRA) and the Federation of Reconstructionist Congregations and Havurot (FRCH) passed the official Platform on Reconstructionism (2 pages). It is not a mandatory statement of principles, but rather a consensus of current beliefs. [See the FRCH Newsletter, Sept. 1986, pages D, E.] Major points of the platform state that:
"Judaism is the result of natural human development. There is no such thing as divine intervention; Judaism is an evolving religious civilization; Zionism and aliyah (immigration to Israel) are encouraged; Reconstructionist Judaism is based on a democratic community where the laity can make decisions, not just rabbis; The Torah was not inspired by God; it only comes from the social and historical development of Jewish people; The classical view of God is rejected. God is redefined as the sum of natural powers or processes that allows mankind to gain self-fulfillment and moral improvement; The idea that God chose the Jewish people for any purpose, in any way, is "morally untenable", because anyone who has such beliefs "implies the superiority of the elect community and the rejection of others".
Most Reconstructionists do not believe in revelation (the idea that God can reveal His will to human beings). This is dismissed as supernaturalism. Kaplan posits that revelation "consists in disengaging from the traditional context those elements in it which answer permanent postulates of human nature, and in integrating them into our own ideology ... the rest may be relegated to archaeology." (The Meaning of God in Modern Jewish Religion).
Many writers have criticized the movement's most widely held theology, religious naturalism. David Ray Griffin and Louis Jacobs have objected to the redefinitions of the terms "revelation" and "God" as being intellectually dishonest, and as being a form of "conversion by definition"; in their critique, these redefinitions take non-theistic beliefs and attach theistic terms to them.
Similar critiques have been put forth by Rabbis Neil Gillman (Sacred Fragments, p.200); Milton Steinberg (Milton Steinberg: Portrait of a Rabbi) by Simon Noveck, Ktav, 1978, p.259-260; and Michael Samuels (The Lord is My Shepherd: The Theology of a Caring God 1996).
Reconstructionist Judaism is egalitarian with respect to gender roles. All positions are open to both genders; they are open to lesbians and gay men as well.

Principles of belief
Reconstructionist Judaism allows its rabbis to determine their own policy regarding officiation at intermarriages; about two-thirds will do so. It accepts patrilineal descent as well as matrilineal, i.e., children of one Jewish parent, of either sex, are considered Jewish if raised as Jews, by some congregations. This is less restrictive than the traditional standard that only considers children with Jewish mothers to be considered Jewish, regardless of how they were raised. Reconstructionist Jews may be less restrictive in this sense because of the emphasis on personal morality rather than stated, necessary rituals; in other words, it's more important to Reconstructionist Judaism to be a good person than to pray daily, because the prayers are only meant to enhance your goodness as a person.
The role of non-Jews in Reconstructionist congregations is a matter of ongoing debate. Practices vary widely between synagogues. Most congregations strive to strike a balance between inclusivity and integrity of boundaries. The Jewish Reconstructionist Federation (JRF) has issued a non-binding statement attempting to delineate the process by which congregations set policy on these issues, and sets forth sample recommendations. These issues are ultimately decided by local lay leadership. [Can Halakha Live? by Rabbi Edward Feld, The Reconstructionist, Vol.59(2), Fall 1994, p.64-72]

Relation to other Jewish movements

Platform on Reconstructionism, FRCH Newsletter, Sept. 1986, pages D, E
Exploring Judaism: A Reconstructionist Approach, Rebecca T. Alpert and Jacob J. Staub, The Reconstructionist Press, 1988
David Griffin's article in Jewish Theology and Process Thought, Ed. Sandra B. Lubarsky and David Ray Griffin, State University of New York Press, 1996
Louis Jacobs God, Torah, Israel: Traditionalism Without Fundamentalism Hebrew Union College Press, Cincinnati, 1990;
Judaism As a Civilization Mordecai Kaplan, The Jewish Publications Society, 1994
Mordecai Kaplan "The Meaning of God in Modern Jewish Religion", 1962

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Edward Wadie Saïd (Arabic: إدوارد وديع سعيد, transliteration: Edward Wādi Sa'id; 1 November 193525 September 2003) was a Palestinian-American literary theorist and outspoken Palestinian activist. He was University Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, and is regarded as a founding figure in postcolonial theory.

In 1999, Justus Reid Weiner, a researcher at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, published an article in Commentary, arguing that Said's family did not permanently reside in Talbiya or live there during the final months of the British mandate, and therefore that they could not be considered refugees. According to Weiner, it was only Said's aunt who owned a house in Talbiya, while Said's family visited Jerusalem only occasionally. "On [Said's] birth certificate, prepared by the ministry of health of the British Mandate," Weiner states, "his parents specified their permanent address as Cairo," leaving blank the space for a local address. Weiner suggests Said grew up in Cairo, and probably never attended St. George's Academy in Jerusalem except during brief stays in that city. Weiner argues that Said's name is not on the school registry and that David Eben-Ezra, whom Said mentioned as a classmate, has no recollections of him.

Controversy over Said's early life

Main article: Orientalism (book) Orientalism
Orientalism has had a significant impact on the fields of literary theory, cultural studies and human geography, and to a lesser extent on those of history and oriental studies. Taking his cue from the work of Jacques Derrida and Michel Foucault, and from earlier critics of western Orientalism such as A. L. Tibawi, Said argued that Western writings on the Orient, and the perceptions of the East purveyed in them, are suspect, and cannot be taken at face value. According to Said, the history of European colonial rule and political domination over the East distorts the writings of even the most knowledgeable, well-meaning and sympathetic Western 'Orientalists' (a term that he transformed into a pejorative):
Said contended that Europe had dominated Asia politically so completely for so long that even the most outwardly objective Western texts on the East were permeated with a bias that even most Western scholars could not recognise. His contention was not only that the West has conquered the East politically but also that Western scholars have appropriated the exploration and interpretation of the Orient's languages, history and culture for themselves. They have written Asia's past and constructed its modern identities from a perspective that takes Europe as the norm, from which the "exotic", "inscrutable" Orient deviates.
Said concludes that Western writings about the Orient depict it as an irrational, weak, feminised "Other", contrasted with the rational, strong, masculine West, a contrast he suggests derives from the need to create "difference" between West and East that can be attributed to immutable "essences" in the Oriental make-up. In 1978, when the book was first published, with memories of the Yom Kippur war and the OPEC crisis still fresh, Said argued that these attitudes still permeated the Western media and academia. After stating the central thesis, Orientalism consists mainly of supporting examples from Western texts.

Said's supporters argue that such criticisms, even if correct, do not invalidate his basic thesis, which they say still holds true for the 19th and 20th centuries and in particular for general representations of the Orient in Western media, literature and film.

Supporters of Said and his influence
In a 1997 revised edition of his book Covering Islam, Said exposed the biased reporting of the Western press, and anti-Islamic media "speculations about the latest conspiracy to blow up buildings, sabotage commercial airliners, and poison water supplies."

Criticism of US Foreign Policy
Definitions of Palestine and Palestinian · Palestine Palestinian territories · Refugee camps Geography of the Gaza Strip · Geography of the West Bank Electoral Districts · Governorates · Cities in the West Bank & Gaza Strip East Jerusalem · Arab localities in Israel See also: Template:Arab citizens of Israel
PLO · PNC · PLC · PFLP PNA · PNA political parties Flag of Palestinians See also: Israeli-Palestinian conflict timeline See also: Template:Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
See also: Template:Politics of Palestine
Christianity Al-Aqsa Mosque · Dome of the Rock · Church of the Nativity · Rachel's Tomb · Church of the Holy Sepulchre ·Edward Said Church of the Annunciation See also: Template:History of the Levant Art · Costume & embroidery · Cuisine · Dance · Language · Music Hany Abu-Assad· Ibrahim Abu-Lughod Yasser Arafat · Hanan Ashrawi Mohammad Bakri · Rim Banna Mahmoud Darwish · Emile Habibi Nathalie Handal · Mohammed Amin al-Husseini Faisal Husseini · Abd al-Qader al-HusseiniEdward Said Ghassan Kanafani · Ghada Karmi· Leila Khaled · Rashid Khalidi · Walid Khalidi · Samih al-Qasim · Edward Said · Khalil al-Sakakini · Elia Suleiman · May Ziade · As a pro-Palestinian activist, Said campaigned for a creation of an independent Palestinian state. From 1977 until 1991, Said was an independent member of the Palestinian National Council who tended to stay out of factional struggles.
Furthermore, he was one of few Palestinian activists who at the same time acknowledged Israel and Israel's founding intellectual theory, Zionism. Said was one of the first proponents of a two-state solution, and in an important academic article entitled "Zionism from the Standpoint of its Victims," Said argued that both the Zionist claim to a land - and, more importantly, the Zionist claim that the Jewish people needed a land - and Palestinian rights of self-determination held legitimacy and authenticity. In this way Said stood out among the crowd of Palestinian activists as one who could simultaneously stand at the center of Palestinian nationalism on the one hand and intellectual, meta-nationalistic humanism on the other. This uncanny self-assurance in both base political and elite intellectual spheres helped raise his status in the intelligent public's eye.
Said's books on the issue of Israel and Palestine include The Question of Palestine (1979), The Politics of Dispossession (1994) and The End of the Peace Process (2000).

Pro-Palestinian activism

Joseph Conrad and the Fiction of Autobiography (1966)
Beginnings: Intention and Method(1975)
Orientalism (1978)
The Question of Palestine (1979)
Orientalisme (1980)
Literature and Society (editor) (1980)
The Middle East: What Chances For Peace? (1980) [co-contributor with Joseph J. Sisco, Shlomo Avineri, Saburo Okita, Udo Steinbach, William Scranton, Abdel Hamid Abdel-Ghani and H.R.H. Prince Saud]
Covering Islam: How the Media and the Experts Determine How We See the Rest of the World (1981)
The World, the Text and the Critic (1983)
After the Last Sky: Palestinian Lives (1986) [with photographs by Jean Mohr]
Blaming the Victims: Spurious Scholarship and the Palestinian Question (1988) [contributor and co-editor with Christopher Hitchens]
Yeats and Decolonization (1988)
Musical Elaborations (1991)
Culture and Imperialism (1993)
The Politics of Dispossession (1994)
Representations of the Intellectual: The Reith Lectures (1994)
The Pen and the Sword: Conversations with Edward W. Said (1994) [Conversations with David Barsamian]
Peace and Its Discontents: Essays on Palestine in the Middle East Peace Process (1996)
Entre guerre at paix (1997)
Acts of Aggression: Policing "Rogue States" (with Noam Chomsky and Ramsey Clark) (1999)
Out of Place (1999) (a memoir)
Henry James: Complete Stories, 1884-1891 (Editor) (1999)
The End of the Peace Process: Oslo and After (2000)
Reflections on Exile (2000)
The Edward Said Reader (2000)
Power, Politics and Culture: Interviews with Edward W. Said (2001)
CIA et Jihad, 1950-2001: Contre l'URSS, une désastreuse alliance (2002), with John K. Cooley
Culture and Resistance: Conversations with Edward W. Said (2003) [Interviews by David Barsamian]
Freud and the Non-European (2003)
From Oslo to Iraq and the Road Map (Collection of Essays) (2003)
Parallels and Paradoxes: Explorations in Music and Society (with Daniel Barenboim) (2003)
Humanism and Democratic Criticism (2005)
On Late Style: Music and Literature Against the Grain (will be published posthumously April 2006)
Criticism in Society (year of publication unknown)
Edward Said: A Critical Reader (year of publication unknown)
Jewish Religion, Jewish History (Introduction) (year of publication unknown)
Nationalism, Colonialism, and Literature (year of publication unknown) See also
"I think that there has been a tendency in the Middle East field to adopt the word "orientalism" as a generalized swear-word essentially referring to people who take the "wrong" position on the Arab-Israeli dispute or to people who are judged too "conservative." It has nothing to do with whether they are good or not good in their disciplines. So "orientalism" for many people is a word that substitutes for thought and enables people to dismiss certain scholars and their works. I think that is too bad. It may not have been what Edward Said meant at all, but the term has become a kind of slogan."