Government

George Will’s “The Conservative Sensibility”

By |2019-08-21T22:27:52-05:00August 21st, 2019|Categories: American Founding, Books, Conservatism, Government, Politics|

In “The Conservative Sensibility,” George Will posits that taming the administrative state and restoring the principles of the American Founding is the great American political project of the 21st century. But is the country up to the task? The Conservative Sensibility, by George F. Will (640 pages, Hachette Books, 2019) If prudence is a [...]

Ten Things I Hate About You

By |2019-08-21T22:53:18-05:00August 21st, 2019|Categories: Abortion, Conservatism, Foreign Affairs, Freedom, Government, Joseph Mussomeli, Liberalism, Politics, Rights, Senior Contributors|

America would be a more wholesome, more unified, and more decent place if liberals stopped thinking they have a monopoly on compassion and intelligence and conservatives stopped thinking they have a monopoly on patriotism and God. Warning: This is not a twenty-years-too-late movie review of a loosely-adapted romantic-comedy of The Taming of the Shrew. [...]

Why American Democracy Is Worth Defending

By |2019-08-18T11:25:49-05:00August 18th, 2019|Categories: American Republic, Declaration of Independence, Democracy, Democracy, Government, Liberty, Politics|

What is American democracy, and why is it worth defending? The current political climate, in which democracy is increasingly (and troublingly) equated with populism, compels us to reflect on this question. Democracy is an ancient form of government, but historically, democracies that rise above mere mob rule and reflect genuine self-governance, while respecting basic [...]

The Horrors of Modern Public Opinion

By |2019-08-16T23:25:25-05:00August 16th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Christopher Dawson, Democracy, Fascism, Government, Politics, Senior Contributors, War, World War II|

Christopher Dawson believed that the free peoples of the Allied Powers in World War II had become too accustomed to employing scientifically-formed propaganda to create public opinion: “Public opinion can itself be the greatest enemy of freedom, as well as of peace, as soon as it becomes dominated by the negative destructive forces of [...]

Alexander Stephens & the “Cornerstone Speech”

By |2019-08-12T14:07:19-05:00August 12th, 2019|Categories: American Republic, Civil War, Equality, Government, History, Politics, Secession, Slavery, South, War|

History is complex, messy, and unyielding to our dearest wishes for easy categorization. That Alexander Stephens understood the Confederacy through its cornerstone of slavery is plainly true and explained in his own words. But the “Cornerstone Speech” goes further, planting the other corners of the Confederate state in concerns over federalism and sovereignty. Anxious [...]

Christopher Dawson on Becoming the Enemy in World War II

By |2019-08-09T21:40:28-05:00August 9th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Christopher Dawson, Government, History, Politics, Senior Contributors, The Imaginative Conservative, War, Western Civilization, World War II|

Christopher Dawson worried about the actual physical changes wrought by World War II, but he worried far more about the moral changes. He lamented that even the democracies of the United Kingdom and the United States had come to resemble Nazi Germany far more than their nineteenth-century historical selves did. Throughout his writing career, [...]

Publius on the Relation of the Federal Government to the States

By |2019-08-08T23:10:24-05:00August 8th, 2019|Categories: American Founding, American Republic, Constitution, Federalist Papers, Government, History, James Madison, Politics|

James Madison wrote in “The Federalist” that the Constitution puts the states to the test: The stronger federal government will inaugurate a kind of competition in good government, breaking the states’ monopolies… Having founded republican regimes in America, regimes animated by respect for the laws of Nature and of Nature’s God as enunciated in [...]

Colorado’s Enduring Constitutional Heritage

By |2019-07-31T14:07:22-05:00July 31st, 2019|Categories: American Republic, Constitution, Constitutional Convention, Government, Politics|

The Colorado Constitution remains one of the longest state constitutions, reflective of Coloradans’ inclination to instruct their government in exactly what it should do and cannot do. They knew they did not want a “do-nothing” government. The 1876 Colorado Constitution contains the strongest declaration of state’s rights of any American constitution: “The people of [...]

Self-Government Requires Self-Governing Citizens

By |2019-07-10T16:52:24-05:00July 4th, 2019|Categories: American Founding, American Republic, Government, Politics, Timeless Essays|

To recapture a sense of the older notion of self-government, we need to go back to a time when Americans still maintained a clear conception of themselves as a people composed of individuals capable of self-government. The American revolution was the dramatic culmination of just such a moment. Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay [...]

The Constitutional Intrigue of West Virginia Statehood

By |2019-05-22T00:04:40-05:00May 21st, 2019|Categories: American Republic, Constitution, Government, History, Politics|

Admitted in June 20, 1863 by ratifying the U.S. Constitution, West Virginia became the thirty-fifth state. It is known as “The Mountain State” with the West Virginia State Constitution in current use adopted in 1872. The story of how West Virginia became a state is an amazing story, full of constitutional intrigue and slight-of-hand [...]

Cicero’s Republic: Three in One

By |2019-06-06T10:12:11-05:00May 20th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Cicero, Cicero's Republic Series, Civil Society, Government, Senior Contributors|

A republic, by its very essence, imitates the highest of creation: man endowed with understanding and free will. Yet, in this greatest of strengths also resides the deepest of weaknesses. When the people enjoy true liberty, they often fail to identify its source, admiring its effects rather than its causes. In particular, they misunderstand [...]

The Limits of Liberty

By |2019-05-12T22:25:09-05:00May 12th, 2019|Categories: Bruce Frohnen, Civil Society, Freedom, Government, Liberty, Rule of Law, Senior Contributors, Social Order|

While the rule of law is an essential public good, the actual number and extent of laws also are important factors in determining whether there will be liberty—and, indeed, the rule of law itself. Moreover, as too much law undermines freedom and its own proper character, it also tears apart the very fabric of [...]