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April 19, 1959 - Image 4

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Single Unifying Force:
Contined froms Preceding Paget rected towards the substitution of
An editorial in one issne of The state-controlled, ever less 'mixed'
M eur utd pa ssge of the ec'onomy for the free economy of
Mercury urged: passage of the espitalism.
SBricker Amendment; repeal of the "The positivist and materialist
Federal Reserve Banking Act; get philosopher of our educational
out of the United Nations and get theory and practice, of our radio
it out of the United States; work and television and press, of our
against Federal aid to education; academic and intellectual circles,
work to dismantle a good part of eats away at the fabrics of prin-
the unnecessary part of the Fed- ciple and belief which is Western
eral bureaucracy; and immedi- civilization. Everywhere the same
ately reorganize the Securities revolutionary spirit expresses it-
and Exchange Commission. self."
In this same context it is most
enlightening to observeithe out- EXPLAINING ultra-conservatism
lines for a third political party and locating its roots are not
suggested by John Flynn, nearly so easy as characterizing
Its principles: pledge itself to a its ideology. While the ultra-con-
quick return to the Constitution in servative can usually be found in
all its parts; recognize the United any class of society, Hofstadter
States is a federal republic and says the group's power "probably
the states are sovereign republics, rests largely upon its appeal to
supreme within their boundaries, the less educated members of the
except as specifically limited by middle class."
the Constitution; recognize that It surely would be incorrect to
the Supreme Court, as presently claim that ultra - conservatism
constituted, is dedicated to the de- stems from a single course. Partly,
structionof the American political the movement is a continuation of
and economic system; recognize the old isolationism, but there are
that the function of the Federal are also important economic and
Republic is to govern the United social factors such as drastic in-
States within severely contracted flation and heavy taxes, the dis-
limits and not to attempt either to solution of American urban life,
govern or to f.nance any other na- and consideration of partisan po-
tion or continents; recognize that litical expediency.
the government must restrain But many students of the ultra-
from spending money (except dur- conservative segment of politics
ing war) in excess of tax revenues. believe a deeper, more compre-
To this end the power to tax in- hensive explanation is needed. Hof-
comes must at abolished or se- stadter advances what he calls a
verely restricted and the United purely speculative hypothesis "that
States must get out of the U.N. ultra-conservatism is in good part

f .

THE DESIRE of ultra-conser a-
tives to ioim a new political
party is easily understood.
While calling themselves Repub-
licans, the ultra-conservatives to-
cay are virtuaiy men without a
party. If they supported President
Eisenhower in 1952 as many ap-
parently did, their opinion of him
by 1959 has dropped considerably.
The Mercury also claims the
Republican Party has "no settled
principles, is heavily infiltrated by
left-wing adventrrers of various
stripes, is hopelessly implicted in
a group of costly friendships with
dangerous allies, has forgotten the
language of the Constitution and
is committed to continue the fatal
policy of spending at home and
abroad plus the un-American in-
astitution of militarism."

a product of the rootlessness and
heterogeneity of American life and
above all of its peculiar scramble
for status and its peculiar search
for secure identity."
IPSET has outlined some of the
major groups he believes give
support to the ultra-conservative
wing. They include:
1) groups reacting to the need
for status politics (upward mobile
ethnic populations and some of
the downward mobile old American
2) groups responding to eco-
nomic as well as status appeals;
3) the nouveaux riches and inse-
cure small businessmen;
4) the traditionalist and authori-
tarian elements within the work-
ing class groups whose values or
ties to groups in other countries
make them especially vulnerable
to anti-Communist appeals;


THIE ultra-conservative, then, is v5) traditional isolationists, es-
opposed to nearly everything pecially those of German ancestry,
that exists in the political sphere The first reason, reaction to sta-
today. He sees a major revolution tus politics, needs further discus-
that threatens the economic sta- sion. The concept of status poli-
bility and fundamental liberties, tics gives a new frame of reference
Perhaps the best expression of for explaining political forces and
this great fear of everything that is perhaps the most basic point
is happening today, I found in an in arriving at an understanding of
article by Frank Meyer. the ultra-conservatives.
"In a fundamental sense the
dominant forces in American life JOFSTADTER conceives of two
today are revolutionary, that is, types of politics: interest and
they are directed towards the de- status.
struction of the principles of West- The former is best seen as a
ern civilization and the American clash of material aims and needs
tradition, among various groups and blocs.
"The politics of New Dealism, It is, in other words, the type of
Fair Dealigmand New Republican- politics that is familiar to any
ism (emphasis mine) are directed student of government and to
towards the strengthening of the Americans who have even limited
State and diminution of the per- knowledge of the operation of the
son. The prevalent quasi-Marxist political system.
and Keynesian economics are di- (Concluded on Page 6)
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