There seems to be a boomlet of support based in part on his CPAC speech. I’ve seen some not so impressed, I think at least partially because he does seem to suggest that Social Security and Medicare are unsalvageable in their current forms.
But I’m at least interested here is I think my favorite section of his speech and I’ve highlighted some parts that I think less thoughtful conservatives don’t seem to get:
We must display a heart for every American, and a special passion for those still on the first rung of life’s ladder. Upward mobility from the bottom is the crux of the American promise, and the stagnation of the middle class is in fact becoming a problem, on any fair reading of the facts. Our main task is not to see that people of great wealth add to it, but that those without much money have a greater chance to earn some.
We should address ourselves to young America at every opportunity. It is their futures that today’s policies endanger, and in their direct interest that we propose a new direction.
We should distinguish carefully skepticism about Big Government from contempt for all government. After all, it is a new government we hope to form, a government we will ask our fellow citizens to trust to make huge changes.
I urge a similar thoughtfulness about the rhetoric we deploy in the great debate ahead. I suspect everyone here regrets and laments the sad, crude coarsening of our popular culture. It has a counterpart in the venomous, petty, often ad hominem political discourse of the day.
When one of us – I confess sometimes it was yours truly – got a little hotheaded, President Reagan would admonish us, “Remember, we have no enemies, only opponents.” Good advice, then and now.