Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Will America survive the end of its empire?
Also in this review: Pat Buchanan’s Catholic vision
The truth that sets us free in the long term is almost never the truth that appeals to us in the short one.

Neither of the two truth-tellers in the current presidential campaign, Representatives Tom Tancredo and Ron Paul, has so far succeeded in gaining the influence he deserves, a failure some commentators have ascribed to their refusal to compromise their relatively dire vision of what the United States has already become, and where it is headed from here.

The explanation for Buchanan’s irrepressibility is, I believe, threefold. The first is his Catholic faith, which tells him that history has an end, and that that end is for the good. The second is his developed sense of history (Pat Buchanan knows a lot of it), which allows him to adopt, when he needs it, an olympian perspective on the world. The third is his zest for life, including very much life in its combative aspect, on which he thrives and at which he excels. In all these respects, Buchanan resembles an intellectual mentor of his whom he mentions twice in this book. Joe Sobran has been compared to one of his mentors-at-a-distance, the English author G.K. Chesterton. Similarly, one might compare Pat Buchanan to Hilaire Belloc, Chesterton’s compatriot and contemporary, who managed to balance a full-blooded relish for European culture against a poignant awareness of its historical fragility.

Pat Buchanan cares nothing for the fate of American empire. Rather, he argues for its speedy dismantlement.
One more time: don’t blame the market. Buchananomics’ down side is like the religious left’s and Rust Belt Democrat protectionism’s.

From Chronicles via Joshua Snyder.

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