Christopher Buckley has left the National Review, the conservative magazine founded by his recently-deceased father, William F. Buckley. On Oct. 10, the junior Buckley wrote a column for The Daily Beast endorsing Barack Obama and calling McCain-Palin ticket the travesty that it is.
Maybe he’s just an opportunist. But the senior Buckley sometimes preferred good sense over ideology when the two conflicted, and Christopher Buckley and other conservatives seem to think that good sense and the Republican party are not on the same ticket these days. But Kathleen Parker and Buckley have both said that they have received serious hate mail in response to their columns calling Palin the ridiculous fraud that she is. Buckley missed some of the most vicious attacks, but he was kicked out nonetheless.
Most interestingly, though, Buckley seems to be calling the Republican party out as a whole for the abandonment of conservative values in favor of the ridiculous social agenda it set for itself in catering to the religious right:
While I regret this development, I am not in mourning, for I no longer have any clear idea what, exactly, the modern conservative movement stands for. Eight years of “conservative” government has brought us a doubled national debt, ruinous expansion of entitlement programs, bridges to nowhere, poster boy Jack Abramoff and an ill-premised, ill-waged war conducted by politicians of breathtaking arrogance. As a sideshow, it brought us a truly obscene attempt at federal intervention in the Terry Schiavo case.
So, to paraphrase a real conservative, Ronald Reagan: I haven’t left the Republican Party. It left me.
The truth is, nothing says big government like the past eight years have. Why are conservatives excoriating Parker, Buckley, Brooks, Will, and other big-league defectors, accusing them of betrayal, and not calling out Bush?