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From the Pen of David Horowitz: August 18, 2009

Posted on August 18 2009 12:50 am
David Swindle is the Managing Editor of NewsReal Blog and the Associate Editor of FrontPage Magazine. Follow him on Twitter here
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For the conservative, the Constitution is not a convenient discourse, but a repository of pragmatic and durable truths about liberty and prosperity in a social order. No one reading the argument of the Federalist Papers, which is an argument about the lessons of history can fail to understand this. The truths embodied in the principles of the Constitution were validated for the founders by the experience of previously existing states. They have been confirmed in our lifetimes by the end-results of the two-hundred year war of the Left against the philosophical and political framework of “bourgeois freedoms” against the idea of negative liberties and the practice of limited government; and by the Left’s establishment of societies based on its own radical principles of positive freedoms, which include affirmative “rights” to food, shelter, clothing, employment, and equality; and by the catastrophes they created.

In a famous afterword to The Constitution of Liberty, Hayek explained why he was not a conservative in the European sense. “Conservatism, proper,” he wrote, “is a legitimate, probably necessary, and certainly widespread attitude of opposition to drastic change. It therefore can not  “offer an alternative to the direction in which we are moving.” And that is a problem, given the dynamism of capitalist society, the openness of the American polity, and the ascendance of radical ideology over the last half century.

— “A Conservative Hope” from The Politics of Bad Faith

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