Creating a New Establishment
Despite some quibbles with his characterization of the modern Left, I hope Dan Riehl is very much on the right track in arguing that the old movement conservative establishment is no longer capable of holding the Right together, and that the future of the Right lies with the Tea Parties, and in particular with the more libertarian element of the Tea Parties. At a minimum, Riehl is right-on in recognizing the importance of a Right that is more hospitable (though not subservient) to libertarian-ish views on social and foreign policy issues. As Riehl points out in an earlier post, CPAC-style conservatism “represents … a conservative establishment without much movement, grown old and bloated.”
I’m still very uncertain that the broader Right will ultimately follow the path towards a more universally libertarian direction, but there are few writers with a better read on the broader Right’s pulse than Riehl, so maybe I’m wrong.
ADDENDUM: Riehl doesn’t outright say it, but I think implicit in his argument is the notion that the old emphasis on the “three-legged stool” no longer works as a matter of practical politics, having become too rigid and creating a real disconnect between the Right’s leaders and its potential base. This, of course, is exactly the point that I’ve been trying to make ever since I started blogging – it has long since stopped being the case that a sufficiently large number of people were capable of being all three legs of the stool at the same time.