Saturday, January 26, 2008

McCain vs. Madison

I take exception with some libertarian ideas; since that's not the point of this post I won't bother rehashing them now. If you know how to search through labels, you'll likely find them in the archives.

But there is the occasional gem from organizations like Cato. You can read one such gem by the same title as this blog post here.

In the article, John Samples hits a couple of them out of the park.

Matt Welch's new book McCain: The Myth of a Maverick lays out the senator's philosophy. McCain once said "each and every one of us has a duty to serve a cause greater than our own self-interest." That cause will be the good of the collective, often defined as the nation or the national community.

That sounds fine and rather patriotic until your realize McCain's statement puts the nation before the individual, duties before rights (which are not mentioned), and denigrates the concerns of individuals to mere self-interest. None of these ideas have much to do with James Madison or conservatism.

Samples then calls McCain out for what he really is: a Progressive.

In contrast, Progressives see speech as a means to a collective good -- improved public debate -- attained by government restrictions on individual liberty. In this view, free speech and free spending are mere self-interest or selfishness, vices to be overcome by benevolent censors.

For McCain, such self-interest should be sacrificed to the higher cause of "clean government." Hence, McCain's infamous statement on Don Imus's radio show: "I would rather have a clean government than one where quote First Amendment rights are being respected, that has become corrupt. If I had my choice, I'd rather have the clean government."

Ah, yes, almost forgot about his disdain for the First Amendment. President John "Clean Government" McCain; it has a rather awful sound to it, doesn't it?

I've recently come to the point where I realized I might vote third party, or write in a candidate if I'm unhappy with who gets the GOP nomination. I've expressed it numerous times in conversations, yet never quite as well as this:

The election of a Progressive like Clinton or Obama would deprive conservatives of power. The election of a Progressive like McCain would deprive conservatives of both the government and the means to resist Progressivism. Which is the lesser evil?

I would add this: there is a means to oppose Progressivism/Liberalism/Leftism which we have discussed numerous times here. With the blessings of Providence, we may yet enact a renewal under such a banner and return strict constitutional government to prominence.


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