American Tradition

Post-Liberal America Share This

R. R. Reno | Mar 31, 2021 | American Tradition

In my Catholic corner of the world, a surprising number of people are talking about “integralism.” The term comes from nineteenth and twentieth century French debates about the relation of the Church to the state. The liberal and secularist forces insisted that the Church should have no power over civic affairs. Traditionally minded Catholics argued […]

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Family and Freedom Share This

R. R. Reno | Feb 11, 2021 | American Tradition

In his introduction to the “Home Building” forum on American Compass, Oren Cass opens by drawing upon Ronald Reagan’s warning that the American culture of freedom must be renewed in every generation. Shoring up the family is a crucial element in this process. It’s worth meditating on why this is the case. How, exactly, do […]

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Unity in Dread Share This

R. R. Reno | Jan 27, 2021 | American Tradition

“Unity is the path forward.” That was the leitmotif of Joe Biden inaugural address. It’s easy to be skeptical about such appeals, given how divided our country has become. And easier still to be cynical, given the flurry of executive orders immediately after his inauguration, many of which intensified rather than moderated battles over morality […]

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Corporate Sponsored Censorship Share This

R. R. Reno | Jan 11, 2021 | American Tradition

Parler, the alternative to Twitter, is being strangled by the tech giants. Apple and Google removed the app from their app stores. Amazon removed the company from its web-hosting service. These companies claim these actions serve the public interest. Whatever one thinks of last week’s events, this action in concert marks a milestone. In recent […]

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The Trump Apocalypse Share This

R. R. Reno | Dec 30, 2020 | American Tradition

In popular parlance an “apocalypse” means an epic disaster. As a simple transliteration of Greek (apocalypsis) the literal meaning is more pedestrian: “uncovering,” or to use a fancier word, “revelation.” But one understands the popular sense, for it is often unsettling (or worse) when the true nature of things is revealed. This is the case […]

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Notes Toward a Supreme Oligarchy Share This

R. R. Reno | Oct 28, 2020 | American Tradition

Most of us are fixed on November 3. This is understandable. Elections are important, and this one seems more important than most. But I live in New York City. As I walk to work each day, my mind does not dwell on Trump or Biden. I go past closed hotels and empty office buildings. At […]

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The Once and Future Republican Orthodoxy Share This

Wells King | Oct 23, 2020 | American Tradition

The American Enterprise Institute has just released a new white paper that defends the CARES Act against arguments from the right. Contra deficit hawks and libertarians in Congress, Jay Cost argues that recent deficit-financed economic stimulus falls squarely within the “parameters of Republican orthodoxy on economic conservatism.” It’s an orthodoxy with origins not in libertarian […]

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Seven Deadly Political Sins Share This

R. R. Reno | Oct 18, 2020 | American Tradition

Self-examination is a useful exercise. I’m grateful to Henry Olsen, Micah Meadowcroft, Josh Hammer, and Michael Lind (in a cognate posting) for their reflection on the sins of the American right. I’d like to add my voice to this collective mea culpa. As a sometime theology professor, I’ll key my observations to the classical list […]

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From Freedom to Solidarity on the American Right Share This

R. R. Reno | Sep 29, 2020 | American Tradition

Campaign books are not written for the ages. But they can be telltales. A New Catholic Moment: Donald Trump and the Politics of the Common Good is a good example. It indicates a shift away from freedom as the leading motif on the American right and toward solidarity. The book was put together by CatholicVote.org, […]

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The Limits of Principle Share This

R. R. Reno | Sep 23, 2020 | American Tradition

Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg’s death roiled an already unsettled the political scene. A pitched battle is underway over who will succeed her and when. David French urges Republicans to stand on principle. He sketches a way forward that has Trump nominating a replacement before the election. The Senate will then hold hearing but refrain from […]

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Yoram Hazony’s Liberal Nationalism Share This

Aaron Sibarium | Aug 31, 2020 | American Tradition

In a previous post, I used the term “synthetic nationalism” to describe what is increasingly the default premise of many conservative nationalists—or, in their words, of many national conservatives. The premise is that restrictions on immigration, tariffs on foreign imports, a more restrained foreign policy, and other “nationalist” measures don’t just help America, but ultimately […]

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Integralism, Rightly Understood Share This

Aaron Sibarium | Aug 17, 2020 | American Tradition

Since at least Woodrow Wilson and arguably since the Mayflower, Americans have struggled to conceive of their interests as distinct from their ideals. Blurring that distinction is sometimes said to be the original sin of neoliberalism (or “globalism”; take your pick), but the truth is it’s been blurry for almost four centuries, from John Winthrop’s […]

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