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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. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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