The Locker Room

The ‘high tide’ of American conservatism

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 09:03 AM

I suspect most regular readers in this forum would agree with the following sentiments:

The chief aim of all government is to preserve the freedom of the citizen. His control over his person, his property, his movements, his business, his desires should be restrained only so far as the public welfare imperatively demands. The world is in more danger of being governed too much than too little.

It is the teaching of all history that liberty can only be preserved in small areas. Local self-government is, therefore, indispensable to liberty. A centralized and distant bureaucracy is the worst of all tyranny.

Taxation can justly be levied for no purpose other than to provide revenue for the support of the government. To tax one person, class or section to provide revenue for the benefit of another is none the less robbery because done under the form of law and called taxation.

Who wrote those words? Mises? Hayek? Goldwater? Reagan?

The fact that those three paragraphs appeared in a “major article” in the Sunday New York Times offers us a clue that this quotation is not recent.

Printed in March 1933, just as Franklin D. Roosevelt prepared to take over the reins of the federal government, the quotation above flowed from the pen of John W. Davis, Democratic candidate for president in 1924.

This is just one of the interesting facts you’ll learn in Garland Tucker’s new book about the 1924 election. Titled The High Tide of American Conservatism, it recounts the last presidential campaign featuring two-major party candidates who both fit the conservative mold.

You can learn more about the book Monday. Tucker will discuss his work with the John Locke Foundation’s Shaftesbury Society.

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