Conservatism isn’t over. But it has rarely been as confused. Today’s conservatives support limited government. But they believe the federal government can intervene in a state court’s decisions in a single family’s struggle over life and death. They believe in restraining government spending. But they have increased such spending by a mind-boggling 33 percent in a mere four years. They believe in self-reliance. But they have just passed the most expensive new entitlement since the heyday of Great Society liberalism: the Medicare prescription-drug benefit. They believe that foreign policy is about the pursuit of national interest and that the military should be used only to fight and win wars. Yet they have embarked on an extraordinarily ambitious program of military-led nation-building in the Middle East. They believe in states’ rights, but they want to amend the Constitution to forbid any state from allowing civil marriage or equivalent civil unions for gay couples. They believe in free trade. But they have imposed tariffs on a number of industries, most famously steel.They believe in balanced budgets. But they have abandoned fiscal discipline and added a cool trillion dollars to the national debt in one presidential term. -- Andrew SullivanSullivan appears to agree with my implosion expectation:
The more closely you look, however, the deeper the division has become in the last few years, intensifying dramatically since last fall’s election.Which is why, this time, the balancing act may finally be coming undone.