The Big Switch

Paul Craig Roberts, one of the few remaining honest conservatives, writes about the other kind of conservative, in Whatever Happened to Conservatives?:

“Once upon a time there was a liberal media. It developed out of the Great Depression and the New Deal. Liberals believed that the private sector is the source of greed that must be restrained by government acting in the public interest. The liberals’ mistake was to identify morality with government. Liberals had great suspicion of private power and insufficient suspicion of the power and inclination of government to do good.

[. . .] Today it is liberals, not conservatives, who endeavor to defend civil liberties from the state. Conservatives have been won around to the old liberal view that as long as government power is in their hands, there is no reason to fear it or to limit it.

[. . .] Like Brownshirts, the new conservatives take personally any criticism of their leader and his policies. To be a critic is to be an enemy.

[. . .] Not a single one of them will be able to explain why destroying Iraqi cities and occupying the ruins are necessary for “our freedom.” But this inability will not lessen the enthusiasm for the project. To protect their delusions from “reality-based” critics, they will demand that the critics be arrested for treason and silenced. Many encouraged by talk radio already speak this way.”

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review.

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