Monday, April 23, 2007

A OneMan Book Review....

Leviathan on the Right How Big-Government Conservatism Brought Down the Republican Revolution by Michael D. Tanner of the Cato Institute.

It was an interesting read, if for no other reason than his logical explanation of how the party of small government has become the party of big government.

Using examples including No Child Left Behind, marriage promotion and faith based government action he illustrates how classic small government conservatism has been co-opted by folks with a host of different agendas and goals.

All of the examples work and work in different ways. With education he points out how education had been the classic provenance of local governance but how under the Bush administration we are moving to a national school board. That no matter how hard the administration tries to claim that we are not creating a national curriculum by pushing testing and rewarding scores on those tests they are creating a defacto curriculum.

Pointing out that how the Republican Party went in 25 years from proposing to eliminate the US Department of Education to putting the federal government in local education in ways that no one would have imagined 25 years ago by either party.

The other really effective example he uses is a set of small examples in a chapter entitled National Busybodies. Pointing out of the Republican lead house and senate addressed such non federal issues as steroids in baseball, video poker, Janet Jackson and his best example Terri Schiavo.

If you wonder how the Republicans went from the party of small government to the party passed legislation to have the federal government promote marriage and work to try and invalidate by any means necessary state level actions on medical marijuana and civil unions this is the book for you.

Well worth the money, I purchased my copy.


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