As a companion to Chait's piece, David Frum wrote what I believe to be the finest analysis of modern conservatism to be committed to print.
Seriously, read it.
It's so refreshing to read an item by a Republican -- a conservative Republican -- who's being honest about his party and about reality. This was especially revelatory:
Over the past two decades, conservatism has evolved from a political philosophy into a market segment.
I've said that, too, but it gains significant weight coming from a former Bush speechwriter.
One thing Frum missed is the fact that a lot of former Bush supporters felt so burned by accurate liberal criticisms about Bush (incompetent, intellectually vacant, arrogant, etc), they've engaged in childish pay-back by using anti-Bush slams against President Obama -- even if they don't fit. I hear about President Obama's "arrogance and stupidity" on talk radio all the time, not to mention apoplectic freakouts about how the president is circumventing the Constitution. This president. Yeah.
I'd love to talk with Frum about the issues. We disagree on just about everything in terms of policy, but I wouldn't have to enumerate the history of the teleprompter or the Hawaii origins of the president's birth certificate in order to engage about those policy differences.