Sunday, March 01, 2015

Irony at CPAC

Apparently a group of protestors at CPAC stomped out of a speech of Jeb Bush because they considered Jeb Bush to be too much of an establishment candidate.

Conservatism, by definition and tradition, is an ideology that prefers the established over change.

Seeing conservatives protesting against a fellow conservative for being too establishment is irony in action.

Conservatism is an 180 year old ideology that was established when right wing thinkers found it necessary to rebrand the English Tory Party in 1834*.

In this 180 years, the conservative movement has flip flopped on numerous issues. At times it supports protectionism, at other times it cautiously flirts with free trade. At times it flirts with religious tolerance but abruptly reverses its position when tolerance threatens to disrupt the established order.

The one and only consistent principle that the Conservative movement has held since the rebranding of the Tory Party as the Conservative Party has been preference for the existing social order over the specter of social change.

Conservatives will tolerate free trade up to the point that it threatens the established class order. Conservatives will tolerate religious tolerance up to the point that it threatens the established class order, etc..

Like most Americans, I am not a member of the Republican Party. Conservatives have systematically driven out anyone critical of conservative hypocrisy. I suspect that Jeb Bush will win the GOP nomination in 2016 precisely because he is the establishment candidate and conservatism always favors the established class structure over social change.

As for the people who stomped out on Jeb Bush ... perhaps they should read US History. The Tories were the people who fought against the US Founders. If you were attracted to conservatism because you believe in the ideals at the founding of this nation; then you actually found the wrong place at CPAC.

You have to remember, the Tories did not rebrand their party the Conservative Party out of love for liberty. They rebranded the party because the Representation of the People Act of 1832 forced a redistricting of English boroughs. The power base of the Tory Party lay in sparsely populated boroughs. The Conservative Party allowed measured tolerance of religious and economic liberty because doing such was necessary for the political survival of the party's members.

Since the rebranding of the Tory Party, Conservatism has been nothing more than measured free market rhetoric to the extent that freedom does not disrupt the social order.

And, I am sorry, but such measured freedom is not a substantial foundation for a free and prosperous society.