Update: Back on September 21, 2012 I wrote the below post about Debbie and my friend, Former President and Co-Founder of the Cato Institute, Ed Crane. Ed’s knowledge of the political landscape proved to be well ahead of the crowd, crica 2012.
On Wednesday, I posted part I of my favorite bullet items from Cato President Ed Crane’s summer director’s memorandum. Here are my concluding favorites.
- In light of Obama’s Saul Alinsky ideology, it would have been good if the Republicans found somebody who was philosophically committed to individual liberty as opposed to community organizing. Instead they came up with Mitt Romney, who appears to be a decent-type fellow, but one without an ideological bone in his body. I’ll never forget when I asked him at a Club for Growth dinner whether he thought the president had the constitutional authority to arrest an American citizen on American soil without charging him with anything, holding him indefinitely without access to an attorney or the right of habeas corpus. Should have been a simple response, right? Not so with Romney. He said (as he often does on this type of issue) that whenever he’s confronted with a difficult issue he likes to get two smart attorneys on either side to debate it in front of him. How appalling is that?
- I’m a great believer in American exceptionalism, which needs to be distinguished from nationalism. Too many conservatives conflate the two. American exceptionalism is not based on our superior military capability (as the neocons would have us believe) or our material abundance (as too many conservatives focus on). Rather, it is based on the idea that we are a nation created to have a government for the purpose of allowing us to live our lives as we damn well please. Look at world history and tell me that isn’t exceptional. It is incredibly exceptional. Now we are clearly losing all the things that make American exceptionalism exceptional.