Nationalism, not conservatism, will be the theme at CPAC 2020

I was honored to be the guest-host on the Shannon Joy Show on News Radio WHAM 1180 this past Friday, where I used my time behind the microphone to discuss how the so-called conservatism being promoted by America First nationalism was, in reality, Democratic Socialism and how it was being used in the GOP’s tyrannical assault on liberty.

Using some of my recent articles on this topic, I shared with Shannon’s listeners some of the many ways nationalism has been chipping away at liberty ever since Donald Trump made it the mantra of his MAGA campaign and how it has intensified recently.

Trumps Nationalist/Socialist agenda (seems to me I’ve heard those two words used together before) wouldn’t be seeing the light of day if not for the help of the Trumpists now running the Republican party.

One of the more notable Republicans conservatives nationalists making a lot of noise lately is Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), who secured his credentials when he gave a keynote address at the first annual National Conservatism Conference (NCC) last year. The NCC was a gathering of like-minded individuals motivated by a desire to create bigger, more powerful, centralized government in order to right the wrongs they believe have been brought on by traditional conservatism. Two areas of particular emphasis dealt with the “abuse” of individual liberty and free-market capitalism.

Speaking to the same crowd that heard FOX News host Tucker Carlson declare that the greatest threat to our liberty “does not come from government” but “the private sector,” Hawley attacked what he called “the powerful upper class and their cosmopolitan priorities” and called for “a new [conservative] consensus” to fix America’s ills.

Included in Hawley’s powerful upper class is “Big Tech” (i.e. Facebook, Google, Twitter, etc.). Earlier this month, he introduced a plan targeting Big Tech that would “overhaul” the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by relocating it to the Department of Justice (DOJ). His plan would give the DOJ “all authority” to go after Big Tech’s “rampant abuses.” In reality, as NetChoice points out, it would give the DOJ absolute power to dictate the future of American business.

Unfortunately, thanks to the efforts of another gathering of faux conservatives — the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) — Josh Hawley is to be given a platform where he will participate in a panel that addresses the question, “What’s the Right Path Forward on Big Tech?” The panel will also feature Donald Trump, Jr. and House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy.

In making his announcement about the panel, American Conservative Union (ACU) chairman Matt Schlapp called Trump Jr., McCarthy, and Hawley three of the most high-profile conservative leaders in America, and said in part, “I don’t think there is a more important issue facing the American political debate…” when trying to explain his rationale for having trio speak.

Needless to say, panel participants are thrilled to be given this opportunity to attack the free market in the name of America First nationalism. (emphasis mine)

“Leader McCarthy and Senator Hawley have been warriors for my father’s America First agenda and are also two people who represent the future of the Republican Party.” ~ Donald Trump, Jr.

“Conservatives are more energized than ever by President Trump’s America First agenda and the tremendous success our country is experiencing. Integral to this movement are Donald Trump Jr. and Senator Hawley.” ~ Rep. Kevin McCarthy

I recently wrote an article about how the GOP’s assault on liberty has intensified this month, and I included a report about Lindsey Graham’s plan to “reform” Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act that will essentially give the government complete control over the internet and social media.

Hawley has been a proponent of using Section 230 reform as another arrow in his anti-Big Tech quiver. In June last year, the Missouri Senator introduced the Ending Support for Internet Censorship Act, a bill that would end “Big Tech’s assault on free speech,” according to a Hawley spokesperson.

“Senator Hawley’s bill is about stopping Big Tech’s assault on free speech. Google, Facebook and Twitter currently get a massive benefit from government that no other entity gets — immunity from liability.

“Senator Hawley’s bill says that if they want to keep that special benefit, they have to adhere to the First Amendment standard of no viewpoint discrimination. They are free to do whatever they wish, of course.

“If these companies prefer to advocate a particular viewpoint or penalize other views, they certainly can. But they shouldn’t get 230 immunity while doing it.”

Did you happen to notice the Orwellian double-speak? Hawley claims his bill is needed to stop “Big Tech’s assault on free speech” even though his bill will destroy it.

Conservatism once gave us Ronald Reagan and “Morning in America,” but nationalism has given us Donald Trump and mourning in America.

America First nationalism isn’t conservative. It’s socialist. It’s big government. It’s anti-liberty. And it’s destroying our once-great Republic.


David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative.

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