Quote notes (#15)

Kevin Williamson channels Foseti:

… the United States is not going to fall for a strongman government. Instead of delegating power to a would-be president-for-life, we delegate it to a bureaucracy-without-death. You do not need to install a dictator when you’ve already had a politically supercharged permanent bureaucracy in place for 40 years or more. As is made clear by everything from campaign donations to the IRS jihad, the bureaucracy is the Left, and the Left is the bureaucracy. Elections will be held, politicians will come and go, but if you expand the power of the bureaucracy, you expand the power of the Left, of the managers and minions who share Barack Obama’s view of the world. Barack Obama isn’t the leader of the free world; he’s the front man for the permanent bureaucracy, the smiley-face mask hiding the pitiless yawning maw of total politics.

August 8, 2013admin 8 Comments »
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8 Responses to this entry

  • spandrell Says:

    I think you should give hat tips, unless you want us to think that you browse NRO often.

    Do you?


    admin Reply:

    I was boycotting it after the Derbyshire purge, but I can’t resist the occasional trawl for Williamson (and — an embarrassing vice admittedly — Steyn). There’s got to be someone there who’s next in line for the axe, and once it falls, having followed them will suddenly become a source of reactionary cool. You’ve got to admit one thing about the National Review, it has the most distinguished casualty list of any publication in history. It’s the left-wandering Overton window in action.


    Contemplationist Reply:

    After unthinkingly accepting the NRO line on those crazy ‘Birchers,’ I was shocked to read
    their actual literature and especially Foseti’s review of Robert Welch’s book.
    JBS was simply an Old Right organization and was purged for it. It’s amazing how
    much propaganda one can swallow even when one fashions oneself to be ‘independent-minded.’


    Posted on August 8th, 2013 at 5:20 pm Reply | Quote
  • Foseti Says:

    The problem with this quote (and National Review more generally) is that they lead you to believe that Obama has anything to do with the permanent bureaucracy and that you can vote against the permanent bureaucracy by voting for someone else.

    The genius of the whole system is that you can’t vote for or against it. It has no front man. There’s no head to cut off.


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    The quote says about the opposite of what you say it does.


    admin Reply:

    Thanks — I agree.


    admin Reply:

    Spandrell made the same criticism, but I think you are both being a little over-sensitive to the inevitable — and ultimately trivial — markers of tribal identification. The substance of the argument was entirely in keeping with your analysis. Hence: “front man for the permanent bureaucracy” (which is permanent precisely because you can’t vote against it).

    Williamson thinks the only solution is to massively down-size a bureaucracy that by its very nature will always be a political enemy. (Good luck with that.)


    Posted on August 13th, 2013 at 6:33 pm Reply | Quote
  • The 2013 Anti-Progress Report | Radish Says:

    […] Kevin Williamson may be the only reason to read National Review: […]

    Posted on January 7th, 2014 at 11:33 am Reply | Quote

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