Tag Archives: conservative

Death of a Movement? Not Sure

Krugman wants to paint Cantor’s loss as the death of “movement conservatism.”  The gist of movement conservatism, as he describes and I agree, is the interlocking of political strategy, bait-and-switch of cultural issues for working class with 1% priorities, with supportive media and think tank institutions.  

Part of movement conservatism’s longevity since the Reagan, I think, is the ability of the mainstream Republican party to absorb the cyclic waves of stoked anger and activists into their rhetoric and policies.  

Seems to me movement conservatism was already proclaimed dead several times, like 1998 midterms, Obama’s election, the “crazies” in primaries in 2010 and 2012 that sank some senate races… and probably others.  Maybe Cantor is cardiac arrest.  We’ll see if the corpus can recover.

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June 15, 2014 · 7:18 am

Is Sociology Too-Leftist?

” Sociology, for example, should be central to so many national issues, but it is so dominated by the left that it is instinctively dismissed by the right.”

So says Nicholas Kristof….

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/16/opinion/sunday/kristof-professors-we-need-you.html?_r=1

As a half-sociologist, I have some insight on this. Conservatives would rarely find themselves intellectually in accord with sociology. Modern conservative thought is deeply enamored of a naive economics that assumes that humans always maximize narrow economic interest and that therefore markets will deliver the best outcomes in all cases.

Sociologists, mostly, assume that humans are partly economic, and partly social. In other words, we are motivated by other forces, including family, identity, religion, or ideology. In fact, we cannot understand humans as only individuals, but must always see them as embedded in larger social forces and structures. My point: you can’t really do sociology as a field of inquiry if you agree with modern conservative thought.

So, with all due respect Mr. Kristof, it is a self-selection away from sociology more than any strategic decision to chase off conservatives.

I wish sociology did figure into more discussions of policy, but blaming us for not being sufficiently beholden to conservative thought is misplaced.

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