By hastening the end of the Cold War, Reagan took away the defining cause of the conservative movement. The right had other issues, to be sure. But anti-communism was the coalitional glue. And while all principled conservatives were happy to trade a live campaign issue for a dead Soviet Union, the damage to conservative cohesion was real.
If Obama lives up to the dreams of his biggest supporters in writing a new, post-racial chapter for America, he will have at once done more for America than any Democratic president in generations. But he also will have cut the knot holding much of the left together. As an American and as a conservative, I certainly hope that's the case. He's already made a good start of it just by getting elected.
Friday, January 23, 2009
Cutting the knot holding the left together?