Jay Nordlinger, senior editor of National Review, writes:
Last week, we had a fundraiser in Boston – a party at the Harpoon Brewery. By “we” I mean National Review and National Review Online. It was an interesting, satisfying, and rollicking time.
I expected the Harpoon Brewery to be a restaurant with a serious amount of beer. Near our offices in New York there’s a restaurant called “Heartland Brewery,” and it’s just a restaurant, as far as I know, possibly with a Wisconsin theme. But Harpoon Brewery? It looks like Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory, as some of us pointed out. It’s a genuine, sure-’nuff, bells-and-whistles factory.
As I wrote last week here:
Left to right: Jay Nordlinger (standing), Jonah Goldberg, Mark Steyn, Jim Geraghty, Kevin D. Williamson
“Is it me, or are we all walking around with a little jump in our step now that everything we’ve been warning people about Obamacare—for the last three years—has actually come true?” said one of the All-Star panelists. This was an evening to remember. The All-Star cast from National Review was in rare form at the sold-out meeting Wednesday night in a small back room at the Harpoon Brewery in Boston.
The last time Dick and Debbie saw National Review publisher Jack Fowler was at Hotel Lutetia in Paris (of all places!). For Becky and me it was our first time meeting Jack and he could not have been nicer. In an email to all of us the next morning Jack wrote: “Thanks to all who came, some from California and Arizona and Missouri and Canada (is that one of Obama’s 57 states?). To any and all, on behalf of myself and all my NR colleagues — Have a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving. And folks, remember, the next time you buy beer — BUY HARPOON!”
Not that Harpoon is struggling. The last time I was at the Harpoon brewery it was tiny, but that was back in 1995 when I was working at Fidelity in the World Trade Center (also on Northern Ave but closer to the city). It’s huge now. The changes along Northern Ave are breathtaking. No longer there are the familiar institutions such as Anthony’s Pier 4 and Jimmy’s. Instead you feel like you’re still in the city among the massive buildings, like Fidelity’s Seaport Hotel. By the way, if you want to get around Boston in style, download the Uber app on your iPhone. A town car will be at your feet within minutes if not seconds—for the price of a cab. Talk about arriving in style.
Inside the brewery’s private room, NR’s senior editor Jay Nordlinger emceed the panelist session which included founding editor of National Review Online Jonah Goldberg, frequent Rush Limbaugh guest host Mark Steyn, “Campaign Spot” author Jim Geraghty, and writer of the “Exchequer” and author Kevin D. Williamson. If you read these guys like we do, it’s hard not to feel a little awestruck with all of them sitting there. But it wasn’t pretentious, it’s a brewery after all, and it was more like hanging out with them and cracking some jokes. One panelist commented that the polls are so bad for Obama that if the Romney/Obama election were held today, Romney would win—and Obama would jump at that opportunity in a second!
On a more serious note, when asked what conservatism means to “you”, Kevin Williamson said it’s about self-reliance and the individual. And when another asked if there’s hope that Washington will change, the answer was probably not. Because what a progressive believes deep down in her heart is that she knows more than you. And that their arrogance means they’ll never admit their mistake or that they’re wrong. Instead they’ll throw more money at it because government at the end of the day is always the answer to your problems.
In speaking with Kevin afterwards one comes away with a strong sense of pride that there are other Americans out there like you and me fighting the same fight. It’s so rewarding to go to events such as this one because a lot of the time it’s easy to feel like you’re fighting alone. That’s certainly not the case. And based on Obama’s plummeting poll numbers, it’s only going to get better for folks like you and me.