Matthew Continetti draws attention to “by far, the best speech of the [CPAC] conference,” which Matt identifies as “George F. Will’s talk from last night.”
This is an important and needed speech, featuring the government takeover of Detroit up front and center. When Will gets to the subject of taxes, he updates some of the data we reviewed in “Obama, Joe the plumber and the gospel of envy.” Will makes the additional point that envy is the only one of the Seven Deadly Sins that fails to provide even momentary pleasure, then pauses for his audience to recall the remaining sins.
Will adapts Rahm Emanuel’s sickening praise of crisis to produce the insight that what Emanuel means is crisis is a lovely thing to create. Will formulates the crisis Emanuel and his master are creating as the crisis of the exploding deficit. Then he turns to Tocqueville on soft despotism and urges his audience to embrace partisanship. He explains why gridlock is a constitutional achievement and urges recourse to American principles.
Will appears to give this speech without looking at a note (except when quoting Tocqueville). He is something of a phenomenon. Continetti provides this warning: “Be sure you aren’t busy when you start the video — you are going to end up watching the entire speech.”
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