A Clean Slate
It is a bizzaro world indeed when left-leaning Slate makes a better case for limited government than the Mitt Romney Campaign and the GOP establishment managed to make during the 2012 cycle. Yet for the second time in less than a week, two different writers from Slate have done so, making compelling arguments for conservatism, and tweaking the establishment at the same time for good measure -- simply by observation and common sense.
This is not to say that Slate is turning right, nor is that their intention. But words have meaning, and in stunning pieces from Dickerson and political reporter David Weigel, Slate's words make one hell of a case for Tea Party limited government conservatism.
A "Den of Liberals" is not just how conservatives view government bureaucracy, it's very the headline of Mr. Weigel's editorial, along with a subhead that "the IRS, like most government agencies, leans left. It's just a fact of life." That's more or less game, set, and match to us right there, but Weigel goes on to attack the very foundation of so-called "civil service:"
In theory, the civil-servant structure should make an organization less prone to an eruption of bias or of hive-mind behavior. But that's not how it works. Liberals are more likely to enter the civil service, and to stick to it, than conservatives are. And why not? Conservatives want to shrink the size of government; Republicans have negotiated deals federally, and in the states, that slashed or froze the size of the bureaucracies.
Let me translate: Weigel is figuring out that bureaucracies will never be impartial venues of grievance for conservatives because we are not bureaucratic by nature.Thus it's not possible. Well shazam! Welcome to our world!
And Weigel goes on, citing the obvious that was confirmed by Gallup polling: "State and local government employees are far more likely to be Democrats than Republicans. Now, does that excuse the IRS's behavior? No. It explains the behavior."
Which of course it does, while explaining why our Founders opposed intrusive centralized government in the first place. Human nature will not be thwarted, which was the point Mr. Dickerson made on Tuesday when he wrote in Slate that "economist James Buchanan, who won the Nobel Prize in 1986 for his work studying economic incentives in government... (demonstrated) that politicians are not benevolent agents of the common good but humans acting in their own self-interest or for a special interest." In other words, the entire theory of civil service is actually self-service when these so-called angels get the power of government at their disposal. This is why liberals and Democrats are by definition more corrupt corporately than conservatives and Republicans, and while Dickerson might not like that extrapolation, he more or less admits it by adding that "since Democrats and Republicans alike are sinful... keep the government small to limit the damage."
Is it just me, or is it fun when liberal light bulbs start popping up?
Dickerson then very correctly applied conservative thought to the gun control issue, stating:
This moment may allow some insight into the views of those who opposed gun control legislation. Republicans senators who ultimately voted against the Manchin-Toomey compromise talked about "paranoia" among some gun owners about a national gun registry. Liberals pointed out that the Manchin-Toomey legislation had provisions... in place to discourage excessive behavior. Conservatives saw it a different way. Excessive behavior (in government) is inherent.
The IRS issue, the EPA favoritism issue, the DOJ-Associated Press issue, and even Benghazi are not scandals really. They are moments of insight -- insight into the liberal mind and into what applied liberalism is preordained to lead to. Four years ago as the Tea Party movement was erupting and evolving, none of these scandals had occurred. It doesn't matter. Conservatives knew that events such as these were inevitable with Barack Obama and his ilk in charge.
Or, in the words of John Dickerson, "conservatives fundamentally understand something that liberals do not." Dickerson also said that "the Obama administration is making the case for conservatism better than Mitt Romney ever did." Shazam, and shazam.