Evidently, the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the annual gathering of America’s conservative activists, just finished its annual convention outside Washington, DC. James Kirkpatrick wrote two interesting articles for Vdare.com here and here. Given Vdare’s bailiwick, the two articles are mostly about immigration and, thus, about the ongoing treason by “movement conservatism” against its rank-and-file supporters.
The articles discuss two related changes over time at CPAC. First, the conference is increasingly overtly in service of its corporate sponsors. Second, the conference is evidently being gradually taken over by left-libertarian ideologues of what sounds like the Brink Lindsey type.
Clearly, these are not unrelated occurrences. Libertarianism is about the only coherent ideology which justifies what corporate America wants: free trade, high immigration, low taxes, and little regulation. Thus, to the extent that movement conservatism adopts the policy goals of its corporate masters and also wants to present itself as “principled,” it is going to be libertarian. Furthermore, given the impossibility of presenting oneself as racist, it has to be left rather than right libertarian. But this has serious knock-on costs for the GOP and for movement conservatism. Left libertarians are a quite unpopular and unattractive bunch of people:
The young libertarians who are taking over CPAC have open disdain [for] most older members of the “movement,” loudly sneering and hissing during speeches by Rick Santorum and rolling their eyes at the antics of Sarah Palin and the like. Continue reading