Working Towards A Conservative Democracy

We are constantly being reminded that the United States is a representative republic (which it is) as well as being a liberal democracy (which is also true).  For the longest time, I’ve had the gnawing suspicion that the two concepts may be antithetical, nay even contradictory, and recent events have proven me correct.

The standard-bearers of the modern liberal democracy have tended towards the “liberal” part of the description, and their modernism has turned liberalism away from its classical roots (the Enlightenment) towards a more baleful and statist, ergo illiberal  ethos.  It is small wonder, therefore, that this modern liberalism is attacking both the “representative” and even “republic” towards a full democracy, into a government created by a national popular vote instead of a democracy limited by proportional representation.  (The sudden popularity of socialism — one of the more repressive governmental systems, is simply indicative of this intent, and the “democratic” prefix attached thereto is, like most of socialism, a figleaf to mask its true purpose.)

It seems clear that if we are to reverse this trend, we need to try to implement an antithetical alternative to the liberal democracy — that antithesis being a conservative democracy, as explained here by Yoram Hazony. I’m pretty sure that few if any conservative small-r republicans will take issue with this principle, for example:

Liberals regard the laws of a nation as emerging from the tension between positive law and the pronouncements of universal reason, as expressed by the courts. Conservatives reject the supposed universal reason of judges, which often amounts to little more than acceding to passing fashion. But conservatives also oppose an excessive regard for isolated written documents, which leads, for example, to the liberal mythology of America as a “creedal nation” (or a “propositional nation”), defined solely by certain abstractions found in the American Declaration of Independence or the Gettysburg Address. Important though these documents are, they cannot substitute for the Anglo-American political tradition as a whole—with its roots in Scripture and the English common law—which alone offers a complete picture of the English and American legal inheritance.

Yes.  The famous expression on the Statue of Liberty “Give me your tired, your huddled masses…” etc. is a lovely sentiment, but it is not policy  which allows untrammeled immigration, nor does it confer a “right to immigrate to the United States” upon the rest of the world’s populace.

Read the whole thing.  It’s really long, but it has to be — overturning a liberal democracy and reverting to a conservative one does not lend itself to bumper-sticker aphorisms so beloved by the Left.

And overturn it we must, in order to return to the proud Anglo-Saxon heritage that is the foundation of our Western civilization.

Afterthought:  note the emphasis placed on religion — most specifically, Christian religion — by Hazony.  I should point out that I, an atheist, have absolutely no issue with it.  I am a conservative first, an atheist second, and I treasure the Christian values of our heritage and their foundation of our culture.  That said, the values I treasure are also the traditional  aspects of Christianity and not the modern-day travesty they have become.  My conservatism is all-embracing.


  1. The proposal while attractive is not feasible. The US is no longer one country. The attempt by the Left to implement its solution is leading us down the path to civil war. The Right doesn’t have the power to overcome the cultural rot and implement the solution you suggest. We need the national divorce. Then your solution becomes feasible in America and the Peoples Republic can go to hell.

    1. It was never really one country. That worked fine as long as everyone accepted that we were a federal republic with a severely limited federal government. As soon as those restraints are removed, it breaks down – 1860 or 2021 the results are the same.

      1. I suspect Switzerland wouldn’t last long if it weren’t a federal republic. The French, German, Italian, Catholic, and Protestant cantons are pretty different.

  2. Point of order, Kim.

    The travesties in the modern church are, like everything else, misrepresented by the media. They hate Christ and Christians every bit as much as gun owners, the wealthy and conservatives. They will bark at the moon in delight when a church falls and puts a woman, or a queer or a rock star in the pulpit. But that is not the end of the story.

    When that happens people get up and leave. Many abandon the faith or go dormant, until they find another church that adheres to traditional values and teachings. My church is seeing a steady trickle of younger families that know their faith is more than just a hobby. Others are the walking wounded that resulted from liberal social engineering. My wife and I are such.

    We regularly get the social justice warriors stopping in to try and subvert us but the result is always the same. We don’t make a deal of rejecting them (which they want), we just refuse to welcome them. They are quietly, firmly ignored. Without the possibility of any drama or controvery or virtue signalling… they lose interest and leave.

    The faith has survived moslems, Romans, barbarians, fascists, communists and tyrants of every stripe and thrived. I don’t think we’ll be done in by queers, feminists, or petulant millennials who can’t grow up. All we have to do is wait and they will take care of themselves.

    1. Feel free to compare the modern-day behavior of, say, the Church of England, with the Church of England circa 1910. Ditto almost all the Western religions.
      The only religions which haven’t changed that much would be Islam and the Far Eastern ones.

      1. Absolutely – all the high profile churches have been pozzed. The only reason they are noticed or relevant at all is to give some liberal elements a religious bastion to publicly virtue signal from. It saddens me to see the Baptists swirling down the same crapper as the CofE

        What I am saying is that the rest of us are going underground. You won’t see us in the papers, we don’t blow our own horns and we don’t pick fights. The mainstream clergy is going to be reminded shortly, bluntly – that the church is not the faith.

  3. Democracy never ever works for long in any setting above that of a large town (which classical Athens was by today’s standards). Even in Athens, only landowning men were allowed to participate in the democracy as they realized giving women and the poor the keys to the treasury would be suicidally stupid.

    When Athens tried to scale itself up into an empire, their democracy broke down failed. A fact our Founders were well aware of but schools fail to teach kids these days.

  4. liberal – emotional
    conservative = intellectual

    Any “system” that requires people to join is of no interest to me.
    How is that different than slavery?

    Bram, above, however does make a good point. If the voluntary club is small enough that any member can approach any leader and, eyeball to eyeball, discuss options then I am open to the idea. But to believe every person in a geographical space must do as unknown people at great distance command while they themselves are exempt is the height of arrogance and deceit and must be shunned and resisted by any means. Nobody owns me and if I have to live like a fugitive in the land of my birth so be it. I didn’t ask for any of this.

    Regardless, what can’t be, won’t be for long and I believe this endless money tree is dying from trunk rot and when the last leaf hits the ground you better be somewhere else to avoid the fallout. Peace, out.

    1. I think perhaps a better distinction is that the liberal is led by emotion while allowing their intellect to inform whereas for the conservative, emotions may inform their decisions but they ultimately led by their intellect.

      (note: I differentiate between a liberal and a leftist in that a liberal at some point employs their intellect but a leftist does not and they are governed purely by their passions.)

      1. Another word needs to be injected here: logic
        All people have emotions and intellect but it requires logic to keep things in balance.

        When your 5 year old wrecks his bike your emotions will sooth his hurts, and when your wife causes another check to bounce intellect is required to convince her that behavior is not tolerable.

        If you switch those 2 things around and use intellect on your son and emotions on your wife you will fail both times. Your logic dictates which to use, when.

        In the world I see in this internet it appears there is very little logic being used by a whole lot of people. My guess is that these very people prefer to live as emotional as possible and try their best to not rely on their intellect, though I know not why. As an architect and an engineer, married once and still, for 35 years to the same woman, I believe I have lived most of my adult life leaning heavily to the intellectual side and sometimes this can be problematic though I have softened a little over the past 20 years.

  5. There are some real fine young people, 35 years and lower in age who make good decisions, take personal responsibility for themselves, join the military, vote based on real information and they are often from smaller towns, educated in Christian schools or home schooled, and raised by parents who have rules for behavior and enforce them. The rest to the younger shit heads have been programed to expected a participation award just for being alive, everything is someone else’s fault (usually Trump) and they expect the government to replace their parents enabling them to live without risk or consequences as they pursue the path to social justice. These are the spawn of the shitty, hippie trash who were screwing around messing up colleges during the 1960’s while some of us were wearing green cloths and taking trips overseas paid for by Uncle Sam.

    I think this Make Love, Not War, Freedom Train is heading full speed towards the end of the line and at this time there are not enough Conservative voters to slow it down very much. We were fortunate last time around when the Trump, who I can’t stand but love compared to the Hillary Dog, won out but he is not really a conservative and most of the Republicans in office are mostly working for themselves so in the long run we are screwed, without being kissed.

    What comes after this great old country runs into the rocks I have no idea and if anyone can turn it around I don’t see who that could be or how.

  6. Our government is more properly described now as a bureaucratic autocracy. We are governed by Big Government, Inc. with two divisions, competing (somewhat) with each other, but focused on the interests of Big Government, Inc. The customers (us) are just marks to be fleeced as much as possible.

    There unfortunately is no going back. Pournelle’s Iron Law of Bureaucracy holds true.

  7. And overturn it we must, in order to return to the proud Anglo-Saxon heritage that is the foundation of our Western civilization.

    A good start would be by returning to the descriptive name for “western civilization” — Christendom.

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