John Locke, Closet NeverTrumper?

The fissures that led to the crackup of modern conservatism run deep. The most visible sign of this reality was the election of Donald Trump, which pitted certain elite conservatives against the majority of conservatives who make up the Republican base. Elite NeverTrump conservatives, who argue to this day about the president’s supposed

By | 2017-10-16T20:09:56+00:00 October 16th, 2017|

Let’s Bust Some 21st Century Trusts

During the Gilded Age, so-called “captains of industry” such as Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, and J.P. Morgan led an industrial revolution that transformed the nation with technological innovation, creating for Americans unparalleled improvements in the average standard of living and amassing great personal fortunes in the process. The spectacular success—and enormous power—of

By | 2017-09-07T14:00:26+00:00 September 5th, 2017|

The Mournful Nostalgia of the Conservative Intellectual Elite

Writing think pieces filled with a mournful nostalgia for the conservatism of yesteryear seems to be one of the core requirements of being a member of the conservative intellectual elite. Though Yuval Levin has argued that a suffocating nostalgia was the foundation of Trump’s campaign, conservatives like Levin and others eager to write

By | 2017-08-11T14:39:39+00:00 August 9th, 2017|

Milo Yiannopoulos’ ‘Dangerous’: A Manifesto for the Transgressive Right

When the Richard Strauss opera "Salome," based on Oscar Wilde’s play of the same name, first premiered in the United States, critics dismissed it as tasteless and boring: nothing but schlock produced for the shock value. The truth, as composer and academic Robert Greenberg observes in his “Great Works” course on “How to

By | 2017-07-11T21:23:41+00:00 July 8th, 2017|

Plain Talk about Law School Rot

The legal academy is a strange place. It differs from other intellectual disciplines in that legal scholarship is published mainly in student-edited law reviews, not peer-reviewed journals. Most faculty members at elite law schools have never practiced law, or have done so only briefly and usually without professional distinction. The curricula at many

By | 2017-05-12T21:26:09+00:00 May 7th, 2017|

Why Republicans Cannot Bear Trump’s Spending Plan in One Easy Lesson

The White House on Thursday released what officials variously described as a “skinny budget,” a “hard power budget,” and—most memorably—an “America First” budget that begins “a New Chapter of American Greatness.” (I’m partial to the last one.) As flattering as that sounds, the truth is President Trump’s first budget outline is far from “great.” The

By | 2017-03-17T13:35:32+00:00 March 17th, 2017|

With Gorsuch, Trump Picked the One Man Who Would Check His Power

The day after a Supreme Court nomination announcement is like Christmas morning for court watchers. It’s even more special, really, because we only get a Supreme Court nomination every five years or so. We spend the day analyzing the nominee from every imaginable perspective—contemplating what his academic credentials, legal experience, judicial record, or even biographical

By | 2017-02-02T15:00:22+00:00 February 1st, 2017|