it, “lure” more blacks and Hispanics intonRepublican ranks and otherwise morencredibly convince the archons of liberalismnhow harmless they were. The endnresult, of course, was the Kemp campaignnin 1988, and it was hardly surprisingnthat a candidate who sought tonwin the votes of a largely white, suburban,nmiddle-class party by telling its votersnhow he wanted to make the blacknand Hispanic underclass the focus of hisnparty through larger and more expensivengovernment programs received lessnthan 5 percent in the primaries.nBut not only were the Court Conservativesnassimilated by the glitter offerednby the incumbent elite of Washington.nAs the Reagan administration rumblednon, the main funding mechanisms of organizednconservatism through directnmail began to wither. Contributors eithernconcluded that with the Gipper innthe Oval Office delivering nasty cracksnabout the Evil Empire every Saturday,ncivilization had been saved, or theynfound that the groups and personalitiesnto whom they had once given moneynhad either ceased to function or werentransparently unable to accomplish whatnthey had vowed to do—to end abortion,nrestore prayer in schools, regain thenPanama Canal, crush labor unions,nstring up the commies, and clean thenpurse snatchers and rapists off thenstreets. Unable to finance their dubiousncauses, the Court Conservatives turnednto the organized philanthropy of foundationsnand corporations, which had littlenuse for a Middle American agendanand were happily married to the samenset of managerial interests in preservingnthe Leviathan state as the forces mostnconservatives had always claimed to oppose.nWith the assimilation of the MainstreamnRight in the Reagan administrationnand the disintegration of its mainnfinancial and political base, the MiddlenAmerican constituency of the administrationnand of most of the right was decapitatednand ceased to be represented,nand the prospects for the emergence ofnwhat for lack of a better term may bencalled a Hard Right based on MiddlenAmerican alienation dimmed. The successnof the Soft Right, however, couldnbe only temporary, because its successnmeant that the Middle American politicalnconstituency on which its occupationnof office depended was being ignored,naside from politically expedientngestures such as the Willie Horton adsnin 1988. Sooner or later, economic dis-,nlocations and the drift to the left of thenSoft Right and the Reagan-Bush administrations,ncoupled with residualnalienation on the part of Middle Americannforces, meant that a serious politicalnmovement representing their interestsnand aspirations would be possible.nThe significance of the Buchanannmovement, then, is not that it is simplynone more crusade of the “conservativenmovement,” a movement that has allnbut disappeared as a serious politicalnforce and a coherent intellectual identity,nbut that it has shown, contrary tonwhat was commonly believed on bothnright and left, that a “Hard Right” remainsnpolitically possible, not merely asnan intellectual irritation but as a politicalnmovement able to gather a nationwidencoalition of voters, attract culturallynsignificant support, and (in 1992) atnleast threaten a sitting President. Obviously,nif that is all it remains, it willnsoon devolve into the same kind of politicalnand ideological ghetto that thenCourt Conservatives were, and if it evernhappened to win a national election, itnwould soon find itself swallowed by thensame entrenched powers that gobblednthe Reaganites.nBut the main reason the Reaganitesnwere so easily assimilated by the incumbentnelites was not only the fundamentalnintellectual shallowness and lacknof character of so many of their leadersnbut also the simple fact that they remainednpreoccupied with the formalitiesnof political power and were blissfullynoblivious to its cultural underpinnings.nWhereas the Old Right of the 1960’snprided itself on its cultural sophisticationn(which it confused with living and workingnin Manhattan and socializing withnManhattanite intellectual luminaries),nthe New Right of the 1970’s and 80’snliked to boast of its pragmatism and itsnscorn for ideas, culture, and the intellectualnclasses that are at the center ofnevery successful modern political movement.nThe anti-intellectualism of thenNew Right was a principal reason why itnwas unable to govern once it had wonnelections in the 1980’s and why it was soneasily absorbed by neoconservative elementsnwho never had any intention ofnpursuing any kind of authentic conservativenagenda. Once in office. NewnRightists found that they had no clearnconception of what they were supposednto do or how to do it, and the only peoplenaround who purported to know werennnex-liberals eager to creep back into thencrevices of the state from which theynhad been momentarily exiled.n- If the Buchanan movement or thenMiddle American Revolution or thenNew Nationalism or whatever it is goingnto call itself is to survive and develop asna serious force in American politics, itnneeds to do more than merely raisenmore money, build a national politicalnorganization, or expand its list of voters.nIt needs to create a counterculture thatncan sustain its political leaders once theynhold office and develop the cultural andnintellectual underframe that legitimizesnpolitical efforts. It must construct itsncultural base not on the metropolitannelites of the dominant culture but onnemerging forces rooted in Middle Americannculture itself. It is exactly that kindnof cultural permeation that sets thenstage for successful political revolutionnas well as for any successful government,n”revolutionary” or not. Instead of grabbingnthe shadow of political power andndesperately hoping that the incumbentnelites will be fooled into letting it haventhe substance of power, it develops ansocial and political force independent ofnthe dominant culture, and when thatnforce is sufficiently mature, the snakenwill shed its skin. The new, emergingnforce will find the acquisition of politicalnpower and the winning of electionsnrelatively easy as the old elite loses legitimacynand the new one not only ac-nC|uires but also defines legitimacy.nFor all the rhetoric about “populism”non both right and left for the last twentynyears or so, revolutions never succeednsimply because the “people” want themnand issue a “mandate” for them to happen.nNo government ever falls, wrotenLenin, unless it is first “dropped” by thengoverning elite that holds it, and nongovernment ever rises unless anothernelite is willing to pick it up and push itninto place. The authentic populist revoltnof 1992 that has surfaced in thencampaigns of Mr. Duke, Mr. Perot, andnMr. Buchanan is the most powerful currentnin American politics today, but itnwill not succeed by virtue of its ownnmomentum but only by finding leadershipnthat is able and willing to carry it tonenduring and meaningful power.nSamuel Francis’s column in thenWashington Times replacednPatrick Buchanan’s syndicatedncolumn while Mr. Buchananncampaigned for the presidency.nAUGUST 1992/11n