Conservati’c Summit, he wanted to see anrnaudience “one-third black and one-halfrnLatino.” Mr. Kemp apparently believesrnthat the white majority of the countryrnshould have only a one-sixth representationrnin National Review’s parliament ofrnthe right.rnBut perhaps the piece de resistance ofrnthe summit was Judge Robert Bork, whornwas dragged forth from a comfortablernretirement as the Stupid Party’s martyrin-rnchief to declaim on one subject or another.rnCelebrated by the stupidos as thernworld’s greatest constitutional expert arnfew years back, Judge Bork said thatrnwhile he doubted that gun control wouldrn”work,” there is no constitutional problemrnwith it because “there is no constitutionalrnright to bear arms.” Instead ofrnencouraging citizens to rely on local lawrnenforcement and their own arms for protection.rnJudge Bork, like Mr. Gingrich,rnendorsed the “federalization of all crimerncontrol functions” and said that “federalismrnis dead, no matter what one speakerrnsaid yesterday,” the speaker in questionrnbeing the hapless Mr. Rockwell.rnJust to let eervone know where hernstands, when yet another stupido saidrn(in public, no less) that Bill Kristol is thernnation’s leading conservative intellectual,rnJudge Bork at once dissented andrnidentified Irving Kristol (Bill’s father) asrnthe leading conservative egghead in therncountry, Irving’s wife, Gertrude Himmelfarb,rnas the second leading conservativernintellectual in the country, and Billrnas only the third leading conservative intellectualrnin the country, for which remarksrnJudge Bork received massive applausernfrom the audience.rnAt last Irving the Magnificent himselfrnmade his appearance, but only afterrnJeane Kirkpatrick had praised andrnendorsed the “liberal welfare state” andrn”national health care” and ElliottrnAbrams had rung the rafters with praisernof global interventionism and global freerntrade on the lines of NAFTA and GATT,rnas did probably most of the speakers atrnthe summit. As for Don Irving, he seemsrnto have reported that, yes, indeed, civilizationrnis in decline, but there’s notrnmuch anyone can do about it, so not tornworry. Why is everyone talking aboutrneconomics all the time, he pondered;rnnational health insurance didn’t wreckrnGreat Britain and it won’t wreck us, sornwhat’s to worry? What we should reallyrnworry about is the rising white illegitimacyrnrate (this remark may induce Mr.rnKemp to forbid Mr. Kristol to come tornnext year’s summit), but then there’srnnothing we can do about that either, sornwhy worry? A woman in the audiencernasked the nation’s leading conservativernintellectual how his remarks about therndecline of civilization could be consistentrnwith a recent article he published inrnthe Wall Street journal, which arguedrnthat the next 100 years would be thern”conservative century.” Mr, Kristolrnreplied that he couldn’t remember thernarticle but that he was sure there was norncontradiction and that if he had it inrnfront of him he could no doubt prove it,rnso not to worry.rnAmong the dinner speakers at thernsummit there was also one Ed Koch, formerlyrnliberal Democratic Mayor of NewrnYork City and now trotted out as a conservative,rnwho took the opportunity tornendorse a two-year National Service programrnfor everyone and a mandatoryrngovernment-run after-school programrnfor children from the age of seven onwards.rnBy all accounts Mayor Koch wasrnfarther to the right, on most issues, thanrnthe conservatives.rnTo be sure, informants report, therernwere serious, hard-line, and eloquentrnspeeches from some of those present atrnthe Conservative Summit—not onlyrnfrom Mr. Rockwell himself but also fromrnBay Buchanan of the American CausernFoundation on protectionism and anrnAmerica First foreign policy, from PeterrnBrimelow of Forbes on immigration, andrnfrom National Review editor John O’Sullivanrn—but on the whole, the ideologicalrnrating of the Conservative Summitrnseems to have been well to the left ofrnLyndon Johnson’s administration.rnAs Greek civil society decomposedrnduring the Peloponnesian War, Thucydidesrntells us, “Words, too, had to changerntheir meanings,” so that the word nornlonger meant what it had previouslyrnmeant but rather whatever those whornused it wanted it to mean. Essentiallyrnthe same thing happened at the ConservativernSummit, the more or less formalrnadoption by the self-appointed leadershiprnof the American right of a newrnmeaning of conservatism. The newrnmeaning is one that, while it retains thernform of the old word, suits the purposesrnand needs of the managerial class in thernUnited States in a way that Old Rightrnconservatism does not and cannot.rnIn place of Old Right adherence tornsmall government limited by the rightsrnof states and individuals and by selfgo’rnerning and independent social institutions,rnit champions Big Governmentrnand celebrates the heroes and icons ofrnBig Government in American history—rnLincoln, Martin Luther King, FranklinrnRoosevelt. In place of a strict constructionist,rnoriginal-intent school of constitutionalismrnthat defends small, limitedrngovernment and opposes a big, active,rnand centralized state, it champions arnBorkian version of constitutionalism thatrnis blind to such inconveniences of thernconstitutional text as the Second andrnTenth Amendments and enumeratedrnpowers and that is actively hostile tornreal federalism and anyone who espousesrnit. Instead of a foreign policy thatrndefends the interests and rights of thernnation and a trade policy that protectsrnthe national economic interest and therninterests of American workers and businesses,rnit champions “free trade” as measuredrnby the One-Worid bureaucratic titansrnerected by NAFTA, GATT, andrntheir grim globalist sisters. Instead of arndefense of the traditional cultural and socialrninstitutions of American civilizationrnand the people who created them, it wallowsrnin guilt about race, bubbles a sappyrnegalitarian universalism, and promotesrnthe dispossession of the demographicrnand ethnic core of the nation. In place ofrnthe long roll call of Americans and Europeansrnwho have defined and defendedrnthe Old Right tradition for centuries andrnthe several hundred scholars and writersrnliving today who continue it, it chooses asrnits hero a self-serving mediocrity whorncan’t even remember what he wrote inrnhis own newspaper column. Throughrnthis redefinition of the right, the managerialrnsystem succeeds in coloring bothrnends of the ideological-political spectrumrnin the United States the same hue,rnso that American “democracy” reducesrnto a phony choice between two largelyrnidentical persuasions and becomes essentiallyrna one-party state masked by thernform of two parties with indistinguishablernideologies.rnLet us have no more illusions aboutrnthe imposition of the new meaning ofrnconservatism. If there’s anyone on thernright who doesn’t share the agenda andrnvalues of the new managerial conservatism,rnhe needs to look beneath thernbody the managerial conservatives havernsnatched and understand exactly whatrnnew meaning and whose power the formrnconceals. With a right like the one unveiledrnat the Conservative Summit, whornneeds a left?rnJUNE 1994/9rnrnrn