The Kids Are All Right

David Brooks sees great things in the next generation of conservative gasbags:

Among the many dark tidings for American conservatism, there is one genuine bright spot. Over the past five years, a group of young and unpredictable rightward-leaning writers has emerged on the scene.


As a consequence, they are heterodox and hard to label. These writers grew up reading conservative classics — Burke, Hayek, Smith, C.S. Lewis — but have now splayed off in all sorts of quirky ideological directions.

There are dozens of writers I could put in this group, but I’d certainly mention Yuval Levin, Daniel Larison, Will Wilkinson, Julian Sanchez, James Poulos, Megan McArdle, Matt Continetti and, though he’s a tad older, Ramesh Ponnuru.

Ross Douthat and my former assistant, Reihan Salam, are two of the most promising. This pair has just come out with a book called “Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream.”

As Steve points out most of this group started out toiling in the wingnut welfare vineyards and Brooks would like us to believe that these shiny empty vessels are not filled with the same old wine but something new! different! causes 15% less cancer! And who knows better about the lives of Sam’s Club Americans than these dazzling think tank urbanites who were taught that power comes from the barrel of a gun (preferably held by yokel and pointed at a brown person) and a paycheck comes in the form of an Olin Foundation grant. Moral scolds and social Darwinists unite! You have nothing to lose. No. Really. You guys never get laid off like people who actually produce goods and services. So theorize away, and, if it doesn’t pan out… blame the implementers who failed to bend reality to your will.

The invisible hand would want it that way.

(Bonus): By the way, I’ll see Steve’s Orwell of The Placemats and raise him James Poulos’ Radiohead Agonistes which elevates wanking to Olympian heights.

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Yeah. Like I would tell you....