New York #rabbits

It doesn’t mean much in the end, but my observations on international aviation law have made their way into The Atlantic, Financial Times, and Reuters. I never did make it into the New York Times — that is, not until I started discussing #rabbits.

Next goal: Get #friendlyfascism trending worldwide.

Neoconservatism and Conceptual Clarity Redux

Addendum, 1/20/2015: A commenter on this post alerted me that I seem to have misread Wolfe’s point about neoconservatism being one branch of conservatism rather than including the other branches he listed as part of his definition of neoconservatism. Since neoconservatism is, in numerous circles, conflated with various forms of neoliberalism, classical liberalism, and libertarianism, I am going to leave the original post up as it may be helpful to some audiences. However, it appears that Wolfe himself is not making this interpretive error. My apologies for the confusion.

A friend directed me to Artur Rosman’s interview with Gregory Wolfe, editor-in-chief of IMAGE Journal. It’s available at Ethika Politika here. The main topic of the interview—Catholic literature—is one I don’t find particularly compelling, but to each their own. What caught my eye was Rosman’s question about Wolfe’s relationship to neoconservatism and the puzzling reply Wolfe made: “Let’s get some terminology straight: neo-conservatism is a branch of the larger conservative coalition, which includes traditionalists, libertarians, and a couple other exotic species. It loses any value if it is simply used to mean ‘modern conservatives.’”

Continue reading


What our dear Holy Father Francis meant, or might have meant, when he solemnly declared that good Catholics need not “be like rabbits” is, as per usual, difficult to say. Patrick Archbold, writing over at his personal blog Creative Minority Report, finds the Sovereign Pontiff’s words “highly imprudent.” I’ll say. Archbold goes on:

Continue reading


Compassionate conservatism was a thing in the late 1990s and 00s. For the life of me I can’t recall the last time I heard the expression used in a serious conversation. Maybe that’s because compassionate conservatism, like most political orientations packed into a slogan, wasn’t serious. It certainly didn’t help that the expression conjured up an image of regular old run-of-the-mill conservatism as downright mean, even frightening. Anyway, I don’t expect it to return to the forefront of our politics anytime soon, especially not in the era of “Tea Party” conservatism and, on the opposite end of the spectrum, a gross mixture of social libertinism and state-managed capitalism. This is why I am issuing a modest, measured, and above all mirthful call for #friendlyfascism. In a day and age when so many traditionally disenfranchised, even oppressed, groups have “taken back” certain words of derision, is it not time for us, concerned citizens of the United States who have grown indifferent toward, nay, disgusted with the present socio-economic ordo to take back the original F-Word?