August 23, 2002


What is a Neocon? (Derek Copold, 8/18/02, The Texas Mercury)
The label 'neoconservative' has become something of a muddle. At one time it referred to an ex-leftist, someone who had rejected his youthful dalliance with socialism or, more often, communism. Not any more, these days a neoconservative can be anyone, regardless of background. For now, the question of how this came to be is immaterial; I only note that it is so. To be a neoconservative, all one need do is subscribe to a certain set of ideas and positions about foreign and domestic policy. [...]

[I]f a public figure favors an activist, Wilsonian foreign policy, strives to create a sense of national and moral purpose along 'traditional' lines through centralized means, and generally opposes attempts to restrict immigration, then he is a neocon.

Friend Copold has written a provocative, though I think not entirely accurate column here, on the nature of neoconservatism. What I believe to be missing is an appreciation of the vast difference between neocons and theocons, a divide that has been most spectacularly illustrated in a colloquium in the pages of the magazine First Things--The End of Democracy?; in the split over the 2000 Presidential nomination, with theocons supporting George W. Bush, while neocons went batty for John McCain; and in the desperate attempts (and failures) of neocons to muster an anti-cloning argument devoid of any religious bases.
Posted by Orrin Judd at August 23, 2002 8:50 AM
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