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R. Emmett Tyrrell

Editor, The American Spectator magazine, syndicated columnist for Creators Syndicate Inc., author of The Liberal Crackup


Some years ago the World Bank released a report on the cost of low tax rates for government revenue. It found that countries with the lowest tax rates, for instance Hong Kong, had the revenue to increase government spending three times as fast as countries with high tax rates. The key is to have the overall economy grow faster than government. Hong Kong managed it and Ronald Reagan managed it.

Mar. 2, 2001 - from "The evolution of tax cuts", published by Creators Syndicate Inc.
The intelligent quest is for the free society with equality of opportunity. The quest for equality of result is the path to the widest equality of all: despotism.

1984 - from The Liberal Crack-Up
The best way to restrain the politicians' impulse to spend and to expand government's reach is to keep the surplus modest. That means lowering taxes.

Jul. 2, 1999 - from his column "Who cares about high taxes?"
New Age Liberalism was in essence nothing more complicated or noble than a running argument with life as it was led by normal Americans.

from The Liberal Crack-Up
On the matter of improved education, the Clintonian Liberal stands four square for educational standards. Yet now when it comes to the standards maintained by SAT college-entrance examinations, the Liberals are against those standards. The SAT standards have for decades proved to be accurate predictors of a potential college student's likelihood to earn a college degree. Now, however, according to the U.S. Education Department's Office for Civil Rights, when those standards have what the bureaucrats call 'significant disparate impact' on members of a particular race, national origin, or sex, they are to be waived. Ill-prepared students are to be accepted by colleges on some other basis. Thus the Liberals are again on both sides of the issue: for standards but against them.

Jun. 18, 1999 - from his column "Pro and Con"
The American proclivity for conformity that William J. Lederer thought he espied back in the late 1950's when he was writing A Nation of Sheep has undoubtedly weakened. Authorities have broken down. Marketing geniuses appeal to every American's most particular taste. Yet that credulous pack that tunes in to television hour after hour is more conformist than any area of society ever contemplated by Lederer.

Jul. 23, 1999 - from his column "Tune Out, Turn Off"
The absence of a literary sensibility among the conservatives abetted their proclivity for narrowness, for it shut them off from imagination and the capacity to dramatize ideas and personalities.

from The Conservative Crackup
For the most part neoconservatives are people who were once liberals but sobered up. The neoliberal is one who has always been a liberal but now replaces the sentimental pieties with brusque slogans ("High-Tech!") and unpronounceable programs. All else stays the same.

The only politicians who call their opponents extremists today are demagogues or extremists themselves.