Category Archives: Conservative Thought

Conservatism in Utah

Grass roots conservatism in Utah, and the rest of the country, has never been stronger but attacks against traditional values and ideals are a constant threat to our culture of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Under the guise of equality, freedom is threatened everyday by new tax and wage legislation. Traditional values are being mocked in the media. Same-sex marriage is legal in 17 states. Legislatures are limiting pro life protestor’s freedom of speech. It’s easy to become discouraged.

There is hope. Conservatives have fought and won legislative battles to protect traditional marriage, to limit abortions, and to lower taxes. It will be a long and hard battle for conservatism to win, but Sutherland Institute is here to offer insight, analysis, and the latest news about national and Utah conservatism.

Read with caution: Why ‘The Law’ lacks context for today’s readers

I read The Law by Frédéric Bastiat in 1977, when I was 19 years old and attending a small college in North Texas. The Law, along with other writings on liberty, had a profound effect on my intellectual development. Sutherland … Continue reading

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Twice as good, half as well, never enough

Is it more important to stand on principle, or get while the getting is good? Is settling for half a loaf selling out, or a step in the right direction? Does mixing metaphors like concrete weigh prose down, or liberate … Continue reading

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Weakening the ‘old habits of decency’

A wonderfully stated warning regarding the effect of government largesse: A sentimental utilitarianism argued that prosperity would abolish sin. It was a shallow argument, ignorant of history; for had it been true, all rich men’s sons, these many centuries past, … Continue reading

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‘The Yellow Bird’ and the limits of liberty

This post is a transcript of a 4-minute weekly radio commentary aired on several Utah radio stations. English journalist and author G.K. Chesterton once wrote a parable about liberty titled “The Yellow Bird.” In this parable, a Russian scholar, Professor … Continue reading

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What’s fair about equal outcomes?

Have you come across this phrase before? “Equal people are not free and free people are not equal.” The point of that saying is that no society can guarantee equal outcomes for its members, and trying comes at the cost … Continue reading

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3 ideas that changed the world

The following post is a transcript of a 4-minute weekly radio commentary aired on several Utah radio stations. Standing in a checkout line at the supermarket, I saw a special edition of Time magazine titled, “100 Ideas That Changed the … Continue reading

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A vision of love and community

Here’s a great column in The Atlantic by Michael R. Strain on how love and community can save conservatism. Many on the right correctly emphasize individual liberty, but they do not emphasize what conservatism knows to be true: It is … Continue reading

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Thomas Jefferson and John Adams: Founding Fathers pass together on the 50th Fourth of July

As the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence drew near, twilight was fast approaching for two living American icons. John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were dying. Former presidents both, of course, but more than that, the two had been … Continue reading

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Conservatives begin with gratitude

Conservatism is not about saying “no” to everything, nor is it about putting the brakes on a rapidly moving culture. It’s about gratitude. This is what Yuval Levin said upon receiving the Bradley Prize last week at the Kennedy Center … Continue reading

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Conservatism and freedom: Sen. Lee gets it

Utah Senator Mike Lee delivered a superb exposition on how conservatism, accurately interpreted and applied, offers the best hope of providing the maximum amount of freedom and highest quality of life for more citizens than any other alternative. Sen. Lee … Continue reading

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Defending the pillars of society

The following post is a transcript of a 4-minute weekly radio commentary aired on several Utah radio stations: Last week, at the Sutherland Institute annual dinner, our special guest was Professor Robbie George from Princeton. Professor George is described by … Continue reading

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Scholar Robert P. George speaks at Sutherland dinner on the pillars of a decent society

Princeton’s Robert P. George spoke at Sutherland Institute’s annual dinner on Tuesday, giving an impassioned defense of the traditional family structure as the key to a free, prosperous and happy society. “Although no family is perfect, no institution matches the … Continue reading

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Growth: The new Conservative vision?

The Weekly Standard recently posted a pair of articles about the need of the GOP to craft a policy and political agenda centered on “growth.” The authors focus on economic growth, but they focus on how that growth improves opportunities … Continue reading

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‘The Cause of Freedom’

The following post is a transcript of a 4-minute weekly radio commentary aired on several Utah radio stations: At the 2013 Sutherland Institute annual dinner on April 9, we will release two new publications: a booklet titled The Sutherland Idea: … Continue reading

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Debating the future of U.S. conservatism

Since the 2012 presidential election, there has been an ongoing and lively debate about what the future of conservatism is or should be. For example, Commentary magazine recently published a “symposium issue” containing brief articles from more than 50 conservative … Continue reading

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