By Arnold Kling
In my latest essay, I articulate a list. It starts with,
1. We weave a thread of self-reliance into a sturdy fabric of interdependence. By respecting the law, we reinforce impersonal justice. By competing intensely and fairly in an impersonal global market, we raise our standard of living through specialization and innovation. By upholding Constitutional principles for limited government, we sustain our individual freedom.
2. We are creative and pro-active in helping one another. We do not have the patience to wait for government, nor do we want to be lulled into passivity by the promise of government. Instead, to solve those problems that require collective action, we form voluntary associations, including civic groups, corporations, clubs, standards-setting bodies, consumer information services, and charitable foundations.
I would like other bloggers to comment on what I call the IATF RFC.
I wrote the essay in the aftermath of attending a Conservative Summit put on by the folks at National Review this past weekend. There, I sensed a grassroots frustration with the abandonment of limited-government principles. At the same time, the libertarian side of several debates–on immigration, for example–was not well received.
Since writing the essay, I have been reading Mark Tanner’s Leviathan on the Right. It has a good chapter describing many of the personalities and theories behind big-government conservatism. Ironically, the Summit featured many of those personalities and theories.