CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Let me get this straight: a decade and half ago the Evil Empire, the odds-on favorite to be the idiots who pushed The Button, just packed up the Volga, took a chunk of the Berlin Wall for a souvenir, and got teaching jobs at the Kennedy School of Government?
I don't think so.
The Red Menace didn't disappear; they hunkered down and went
underground. They got cable tv and magazine subscriptions, read
"People", watched "Oprah", they understood that times change and changed
with them. The era of bad suits and pounding your shoe on the lectern
So, when the time was right, at the close of the Millennium when
the world was worried about Y2K and ending up like characters in a Dickens
novel, they came back with a brand neo-look and a brand neo-name.
Now so-called conservatives call themselves Neo-cons, but they're neither -
not even close. They are the new Communists. (I'm talking about your new,
old-fashioned bloated Soviet commie, not one of those streamlined Third World
Today's conservatives-commiservatives may occasionally talk the
talk, but Jesus, Javitz and Buckley, they look like the Politburo to me.
Every time I read the paper or turn on tv, I see these apparatchiks
(a Soviet-era term for "corrupt bureaucrat") doing the perp walk (except on Fox,
where the story is "Jack Abramoff Saves the American Fedora Industry").
There are tales about domestic spying, wars of choice, torture of
prisoners, Cuban gulags, regulation of tv and radio content, insulated
leadership - I'm getting dizzy.
Without being specific, it's safe to say that below are a few basic
notions of real conservatism:
a laissez-faire economic system;
limited government; opposition to the expanded role of government.
lower taxes, reduced government intervention in the marketplace, and
reduced regulation of business activities;
a strong American military and the use of American military power to
defend American interests throughout the world, but without foreign
state's rights and limitations on the scope of federal spending.
I realize most of our leaders think the French aren't worth thinking
about, what with their fried potatoes and their fancy language, but come on!
Laissez-faire doesn't mean "eminent domain" even to a C student like certain
people in the White House.
As for limited government, the only limit this government has is
Yes, we have lower taxes - well, I don't, but Mr. Cheney, Minister for
Halliburton, sure caught a break.
Our army is certainly strong, in spite of underfunding and
underecruitment, and rumor has it we're going to defend our interests in
Iran next - then it's on to France. (It's not foreign intervention if they
say it's not foreign intervention.)
My brother, the paranoid Old Lefty, is certain President George Bush didn't win
the first election, and that he stole the second one. He once compared the sitting
President to Stalin, which, at the time, I thought a bit much - and any
of you conspiracy theorists jump in here - but why make Condoleezza Rice, an expert in
Soviet affairs, the President's National Security Advisor and then Secretary of State
a good 10 years after the Soviet Union fell?
The only person she knows who even speaks Russian is the guy who gets
her sable coats at cost.
I'm willing to admit I'm not a policy wonk; subtlety often eludes me,
but am I missing something conservative about these New Conservatives?
They spend money like Ted Stevens at a bridge-buying convention in
Vegas; they invade sovereign nations to promote - and enforce, mustn't forget
enforce - a particular kind of government; they have their nose in everyone's
business - their American citizens' business - and they want to
legislate what we can watch and hear. And this isn't news: there's a
certain, oh, let's call it "Old World" paternalism to the way the govern.
I'm old - not Sen. Strom Thurmond old (I haven't sold my soul to the Devil
yet, but as I'm a writer with an option), but old enough to
remember the Soviet Union forcing its will on its own citizens and anyone
else who happened to be in the neighborhood.
As in the White House today, the idea of "the loyal opposition" was unheard
of back in the U.S.S.R. - you're either against the terrorists or you're for them.
It's much easier to rule when you ignore everyone who disagrees with you. After all, you
can't get things done listening to crackpots and Democrats.
During the Cold War the threat of thermonuclear annihilation got the
big play. You remember the clock of doom ticking toward midnight, when the mushrooms
clouds would bloom and we'd all be eating radioactive canned beets for our last
But what still resonates today are the faces of a people, of
nations of peoples, people who weren't heard, people who weren't considered,
people who weren't asked - people who were told.
Comrades, it isn't time to get in line for shoes or toilet paper, but
you may want to have a bottle of home-brewed vodka nearby, because in the
Neo-commie version of America, Right is always right, even when it's wrong.
W.R. Marshall is a satirist whose work will appear regularly in The American
Copyright 2016 Joe Shea The American Reporter. All Rights Reserved.