Mar 2, 2006

Cons of "Crunchy Cons"

NRO's Jonah Goldberg has written a scathing review of "Crunchy Cons" by Rod Dreher. I've only read to page 14 of the book, but I'm pretty sure Jonah has nailed it! I'm a reformed granola lefty, so I recognized Dreher's characterization of conservatives (the conventional non-crunchy kind) as greedy materialists for the insult it is. I also know Dreher is right about ugly shoes being more comfortable and organic produce being yummier. But, as Goldberg asserts, footwear and grocery shopping habits do not a new movement make.

If Dreher is right about the Godless greedy materialist nature of conventional conservatism, how does he explain all the average and low-income Republican voters (by far the majority)? It drives Liberals nuts that these people "vote against their interests" (why don't they loot the treasury like us Liberals)! And what about the statistics that reveal charitable giving is markedly higher in the red states and particularly in the poor Bible-belt states of the South? What about the fact that Republican donations are primarily from small donors where Democrat donations are primarily from large corporate donors?

I'm afraid Dreher's narcissism has caused him to lose sight of what conventional conservatism is really about: “Classical liberals root their case for laissez-faire in the autonomy of the individual, the primacy of freedom, the faith that virtue not freely chosen isn't virtuous, and in a deeply religious conception of the individual conscience (another sorely missing voice in Rod's book is Michael Novak, the world's leading authority on the intersection of market economics and Catholicism).” Wearing comfy shoes and wanting to eat fresh organic produce doesn’t make you a Liberal. But, believing these acts are morally superior can sure lead you down the Leftist path.


NewEnglandWarriorPatriot said...

Once one starts down the path of the Leftist side, forever could it dominate one's destony!

The Western Chauvinist said...

Right you are, Warrior!

Cathy said...

Oh, this is all very interesting. I read Jonah Goldberg's piece and was impressed as always with his humor and insight. (Plus his courage to wade in like this against his buddies:0) I'm pleased this book is getting a good airing - in your house, too! I'd forgotten the statistics about charitable giving etc. Good job, Western Chauvinist.

Anonymous said...

Very well said as usual. Keep up the great work!