In State Power & Conservative Ideology, Stephen Crockett writes,
It is increasingly apparent that there is an important ideological conflict going on in the modern conservative movement between supporters of increased state power and supporters of limited government.
. . . The Bush Republicans advocate a “neo-con” approach to state power that critics fear is a potential creeping fascist ideology disguised as conservatism. Secret prisons, torture and unlimited detention in prisons without trial are all examples of policies supported by the Bush Republican that outrage both traditional conservatives and civil libertarians.
Traditional conservatives rely on the rule of law instead of personal rule by a strong leader or leadership group. The Bush Republicans seem to believe that anything the Bush Administration wants to do should be permitted because they claim that they should be trusted not to abuse the power of their offices.
Traditional conservatives believe that the system of checks and balances should be strong enough to survive good or bad White House or Congressional leaders. The Bush Republicans seem to view the checks and balances system devised by our Founding Fathers as obstacles to imposing their views on our government and nation.
Lots more. Good stuff. Go read.