Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Since the health care vote, David Frum has written a much-circulated piece on his site where he criticizes the conservative/Republican strategy on health care over the last year or so. Basically, he argues that we should have found a place to cut a deal and cut our losses.

Some of us on the mainstream Right have criticized Frum for insufficient loyalty to the cause over the last couple of years. It's mostly a bad rap. Unlike most dissident conservatives, he is not in the game to express disapproval of the Hannity-Palin axis. His story is a little more subtle. The Hannity-Palin axis is mildly distasteful, but more than that their politics and the people they represent are quite limited, so in the final analysis they are losers.

All of this is background to the main point, which is that Frum's problem is not disloyalty, but he is sometimes wrong on the merits and this is one such example. There are very few silver linings in the health care debacle, but the biggest one is that we have comprehensively disproved the proposition that the Democrats' health care reform was inevitable and continuous growth of the welfare state is something that we have to acquiesce to for the sake of making marginal improvements here or there.

As it is, the American people know they can resist, if they choose. It's also useful for our relations with the other team, strained as they are. They may be stonger than us, but their actions are never wise or just, and we shouldn't pretend that they are.

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