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Two Lines Tell The Story

“Conservatism, in my humble opinion, did not lose last night. It’s just very difficult to beat Santa Claus.”Rush Limbaugh.

Ah. So, once again, the conservative catechism teaches us that conservatism cannot fail; it can only be failed. And the people chose Obama over Romney because they’re weak-willed children who can be bought off with promises of stuff.

No need to change, or rethink anything, or do anything different. It’s the people who are bad. Limbaugh even said today that “we’ve lost the country.”

To be fair, in theory, he could be right about the people’s judgment being corrupt. Democracy means the people are sovereign; it doesn’t mean that they are infallible.

Still, it seems like it wasn’t all that long ago that frustrated liberals were whining that they couldn’t win this or that election because the people were stupid and bigoted and didn’t know better. Looks like the worm done turned.

If you want a precis of what is wrong with movement conservatism today, you cannot do much better than those two lines of Limbaugh’s, which reflect smug, self-satisfied, mindless epistemic closure. Impressive, in its way.

UPDATE:What Daniel Larison says! Times ten!


about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. A veteran of three decades of magazine and newspaper journalism, he has also written three New York Times bestsellers—Live Not By Lies, The Benedict Option, and The Little Way of Ruthie Lemingas well as Crunchy Cons and How Dante Can Save Your Life. Dreher lives in Baton Rouge, La.

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