The rise of the conservative legal movement

Living in a liberal enclave, I sometimes find myself at social gatherings where folks assume that everyone is a leftist and everyone hates President Bush. In fact, this happened to me quite a bit pre-Power Line. Once, very early in the Bush administration an acquaintance was working himself into a state describing some twisted and nefarious scheme Bush supposedly had concocted. Trying to conceal any trace of irony, I said that Bush must be some sort of evil genius to have thought of this. The liberal paused for a moment and then replied, “I wouldn’t say he’s a genius.”
I confess that when I heard about the new book, The Rise of the Conservative Legal Movement, I feared that author Steven Teles (who is not a conservative, as far as I can tell) had treated his subject as a tale of evil genius conservative lawyers and operatives seizing control of the legal establishment through brilliance, will power, money, and a ruthlessness liberals were too pure to match. It turns out, however, that Teles has written his book in part to explode this myth of


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