When I was a Los Angeles Times news editor many years ago in Orange County, California, I suggested to my liberal boss that we should have at least one conservative columnist.
She looked at me as if I had lobsters crawling out of my ears. The Times’ Orange County edition’s editorial pages stayed 200-proof liberal.
Over on the East Coast, The New York Times and The Washington Post added a couple of actual conservatives, but that was then. The Times now actually tries to pawn off David “Bobos in Paradise” Brooks as a conservative. As for The Post, it has several writers it consider conservative, or at least Republican.
Until Charles Krauthammer’s death from cancer at age 68 in June, The Post did have one of the best conservative columnists. And it still runs former Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen, an actual conservative. The rest might best be called “deep state conservatives.”
George Will, who won a Pulitzer in 1977, still conveys detailed, historic research and writes most entertainingly about baseball. But he’s a squish on social issues and a certified Trump hater.
Rounding out the “conservatives” are Jennifer Rubin, Kathleen Parker, Michael Gerson and Max Boot. They’re all social liberals, at least on the marriage issue, which is a non-negotiable demand in the world of liberal publishing. And they apparently hate Donald Trump and want the Democrats to rid the country of him as soon as possible.
On Oct. 10, Mr. Boot’s headlined piece was “The Dark Side of Conservatism.” He opined that Mr. Trump’s rise is no “anomaly” but evidence that “the history of modern conservative [sic] is permeated with racism, extremism, conspiracy-mongering, ignorance, isolationism, and know-nothingism.” With friends like these .
He went on to trash Barry Goldwater and implied that conservatives’ anger at President Eisenhower’s appointment of Earl Warren as chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court was simply racist fury over the school desegregation ruling in Brown v. Board of Education (1954).
Never mind that the Warren court obliterated pornography laws, unleashing a tidal wave of smut that has not crested. Or that the Warren court created the Miranda warning that hobbles police, and the “right to privacy,” which led to legalizing abortion in 1973 and same-sex “marriage” in 2015. The Warren court essentially served as the law firm for a sexual revolution that has ripped apart the social fabric.
Mr. Boot offers a Trump antidote: “[T]he Republican Party must suffer repeated and devastating defeats, beginning in November [and] burned to the ground.” Well said, Mr. Conservative.
Not to be outdone, former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson calls Mr. Trump “a cruel bigot” and also wants Democrats to win in November. He describes “what passes for GOP discourse — the cultivation of anger, fear, grievances, prejudices and hatreds.” Funny, that sounds like the Democrats’ “civility” playbook.
Mr. Gerson licks his chops at Democrats recapturing the House, “allowing Congress to get past the GOP’s coordinated cowardice and begin real investigations of the administration’s corruption.”
Kathleen Parker pulls the paper toward the center at times but confers “conservative” blessings on homosexual activist legal victories. In a column in which she defends religious liberty, she nonetheless sides with a couple who want to force a church-based adoption agency to assign them a child. “But I’m not Catholic, nor do I share the church’s belief that same-sex marriage is a sin,” she explains. In another column, she describes the peril of a conservative court tampering with abortion and same-sex “marriage”:
“What new justice would want to be that man or woman, who forevermore would be credited with upending settled law and causing massive societal upheaval?”
Settled law? You mean like Dred Scott? Or Plessy v. Ferguson? Or Roe v. Wade? Or Obergefell, which struck down marriage laws throughout the nation? If the ruling goes liberal, it’s “settled.” When it doesn’t, it isn’t.
Jennifer Rubin, who writes the misleadingly named “Right Turn” anti-Trump blog for The Post, authored a Sunday Outlook monstrosity that speaks for itself: “Tear Down This Icon,” an attack on Ronald Reagan’s timeless appeal.
Finally, there’s the estimable George Will. His June 24th column was headlined “Vote against the GOP in November.”
Mr. Will also hums to the siren song of moral relativism on sex and marriage, better known as the “smarter than God” school of philosophy. In 2010, he backed opening the military to homosexuality, noting that the Supreme Court looked to “the evolving standards of decency that mark a maturing society.” So, those of us who look to our Bibles for guidance are immature and perhaps indecent.
In a 2015 column, “Mike Huckabee’s Appalling Crusade,” Mr. Will mocked the former Arkansas governor and Fox TV talk-show host for his outspoken Christianity and Mr. Huckabee’s suggestion that a court ruling redefining marriage would be illegitimate. Mr. Will compared this to Arkansas Gov. Orval Faubus’ refusal in 1957 to integrate schools, and called Mr. Huckabee “embarrassing.”
Well, at least The Post won’t be embarrassed by having a token contingent of actual conservatives writing for it.
• Robert Knight is a Washington Times contributor. His latest book is “A Nation Worth Saving: 10 Steps to Restore Freedom” (djkm.org/nation, 2018).