NR on Gingrich; VFR on NR

Katrina Trinko at National Review Online catalogues some of Gingrich’s decidedly non-conservative positions.

P.S. The idea of National Review as the arbiter of conservatism is a bad joke. Are there still people who regard that magazine as conservative? For the last 14 years its main political function has been to stick a wet finger in the wind, decide which way the wind is blowing, and adjust itself accordingly. Its guide is not conservatism, but popularity. Thus in 2008, as soon as McCain won the New Hampshire primary, NR’s editor began rooting for him for the nomination, even though the magazine had officially endorsed Romney who was then running as the conservative candidate. At the same time, NR has opened itself to decidely non-conservative opinion—giving equal time, for example, to promoters of homosexual “marriage,” and featuring among its regular writers pop vulgarians such as Jonah Goldberg and atheist despisers of Christianity such as John Derbyshire and Andrew Stuttaford. (At this very moment there is an NR cruise going on somewhere, and the atheist nihilist Derbyshire is on it, hobnobbing with the paying guests as a representative and “star” of NR.) To believe at this late date that National Review is still conservative in any meaningful sense is the very definition of being out of it.

And another thing: NR supported the intervention in Libya, and one of its reasons was that while the rebels might not be our friends, they would probably be somewhat better than Kaddafi. So the “flagship magazine of American conservatism” backs U.S. military action to overthrow a foreign government that is not threatening our country, on the grounds that the replacement government will be better than the existing government.

Here is the relevant text, from NR’s March 16, 2011 editorial (and here is my running commentary on it):

We should have no illusions about the rebels, a rag-tag crew that, no doubt, includes its share of bad actors. The standard here, though, shouldn’t be particularly high—are they better or worse than Qaddafi?

Let’s repeat that: NR says that the standard for attacking a foreign country and killing its leader is not particularly high.

And this is the magazine that regularly pronounces on who is a real conservative and who isn’t.

- end of initial entry -

A reader writes:

Gingrich and his third wife look like father and daughter. See the photo. She’s a homewrecker and a golddigger as far as I’m concerned and I don’t want them in the White House under any circumstances whatsoever. I’m feeling the Sarah Palin syndrome coming over me again. Gingrich and Giuliani both junked their political careers with their messy personal lives. And Republican commentators who diminish the importance of personal lives in political candidates make me even angrier.

Timothy A. writes:

Our library has scanned copies of NR going back to 1975 online. Looking at the 26 Sep 1975 issue (which featured Jeffrey Hart’s positive review of Raspail’s “The Camp of the Saints”), I see that the writers featured in that issue included George Will, James Burnham, M. Stanton Evans, Auberon Waugh, W.H. Hutt, William F. Rickenbacker, Russell Kirk, and D. Keith Mano.

I don’t believe that any of them discussed the mid-’70s equivalent of the Simpsons or bikini babes in hot tubs or promoted atheism or homosexual marriage (though NR was featuring an agnostic, closeted homosexual at the time).

Posted by Lawrence Auster at November 15, 2011 08:09 PM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):