A Little Libertarian Advice

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An
organization that is not explicitly right-wing will become left-wing
over time.”

~
John O'Sullivan — National Review Editor at Large

Readers
of National Review will recognize O'Sullivan's Law, which
governs the inevitable leftward drift of all but the most rigid
and vigilant organizations. It's the law of compromise and consensus,
as founding principles are de-emphasized, then abandoned, and eventually
forgotten. Its implications are vast; even our cherished, if misunderstood
"democracy," is socialism in its adolescence. O'Sullivan's
Law necessitates and makes urgent NR's supposed mission to
"stand athwart history yelling u2018Stop!"

Herewith,
the similar "Carlson's Law" and its implications for conservatives:

An
organization that is not explicitly libertarian will voluntarily
and irreversibly surrender its liberties to the State.

It's
really Orwell's Law. Eventually we'll love Big Brother, if not for
gifts conferred, then for threats withdrawn. Years from now, the
"Office of Homeland Security" will likely resemble the
"War on Drugs" in its scope and in the success of its
stated objectives. And "conservatives" Bush, Ashcroft,
and Bennett will broadcast their smiling approval from the safety
of a gated community. Conservatives were once anti-State, the way
Republicans were once anti-tax. How long before they too are viewed
by a cynical public as "paying lip-service" to civil liberties?

It's
worth remembering that there are no temporary measures, no sunset
provisions. All services are essential. With each surrender, by
failing to check its momentum, conservatives aid the force that
will one day smother them.

And
if you ain't part of the solution, you're part of the problem.

October
2, 2001

Brian
Carlson (send him mail)
is "between careers" in Chicago.

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