Conservative Idolatry


To be a bit flip, you could say that rather than thinking in a serious way about public policy the conservative movement debates issues by asking "what would Reagan do?" Either that or you could flip over to the home page of the Heritage Foundation, the flagship policy outfit of the right, and find a prominent banner advertising Heritage's new What Would Reagan Do? website. At the moment, they seem to be having a special focus on energy policy.

Might I suggest that Reagan, having been a prominent political figure in the 1960s through 1980s, wasn't in a position to avail himself of 21st century research into the problem of global warming and the risks of catastrophic climate change. If Reagan were both alive today and actually possessed of the God-like powers that Heritage attributes to him, I like to think he would have taken that research into account. Alternatively, if he were alive today and just plowed ahead with policies that take no account of post-Reagan research, then he'd be nicely in line with mainstream conservatism but that would hardly be a very responsible way to behave.