The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Jonah Goldberg Is Wrong

Posted on | December 28, 2010 | 34 Comments

Goldberg celebrates the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell as a step toward the “rise of the gay bourgeoisie.” But what is happening is not the bourgeoisification of radicalism; rather, it’s the radicalization of the bourgeoisie. If the American middle-class adopts more and more the radical-egalitarian worldview of the Left, this cannot be sold as a triumph of conservatism, no matter how cleverly Jonah Goldberg or any other Official Conservative Spokesman frames that argument.

The repeal of DADT was a defeat for conservatives, and it will likely prove the harbinger of yet other such defeats. Conservatives spent 17 years arguing that repealing DADT — a policy which was itself originally a compromise — would have harmful effects on military readiness.

We shall wait and see. But it would be a terrible thing if, when the disastrous consequences of this radical policy change become apparent — as I am confident they will — conservatives are afraid to speak up because our Official Conservative Spokemen have declared the issue off-limits.

(Via Donald Douglas at American Power.)

UPDATE: I’m grateful to see Goldberg respond via Twitter:

Ignoring the “strategic b.s.” retort — because I’m not sure what he means by that — I will adduce yet further evidence of Jonah’s wrongness, namely that any argument which begins by citing David Brooks is inherently dubious.

More seriously, I am reminded of the Battle of Chancellorsville, when Joe Hooker ordered George Meade’s corps — which had fought hard to hold the crest of a ridge two miles east of the key crossroads — to pull back. Meade was furious: “If he can’t hold the top of the hill, how the hell does he expect to hold the bottom of it?”

The Senate Republicans’ lame-duck collapse on DADT is analogous: The abandonment of a defensible position which gives the opponent an advantage that is likely to prove decisive.

But it is all as foretold long ago by a farsighted early critic of feminism: “The fantastical project of yesterday, which was mentioned only to be ridiculed, is today the audacious reform, and will be tomorrow the accomplished fact.”

Bookmark and Share

Comments

Comments are closed.