America’s Way Back: Reclaiming Freedom, Tradition, and Constitution

(ISI Books, 2013)

Book Forum
September 19, 2013
12:00PM to 1:30PM EDT
Policy Center with Foyer
Featuring the author Donald J. Devine, Vice Chairman, American Conservative Union; with comments by Matt Welch, Editor-in-Chief, Reason Magazine; moderated by Gene Healy, Vice President, Cato Institute.
How can America find its way back from economic stagnation, fiscal calamity, and national “malaise”? In his new book, American Conservative Union vice chairman Donald J. Devine argues: the same way it has before, through “a restoration of the constitutional synthesis of freedom and tradition” at the heart of the American experiment.

In America’s Way Back, Devine makes “the case for 21st century ‘fusionism’ ” — a reinvigoration of the Cold War-era conservative-libertarian alliance that employed “libertarian means for traditionalist ends.”

But the politics of the new century have strained that alliance significantly. In the gay marriage and immigration debates, conservatives decry libertarians’ rejection of “traditionalist ends,” while libertarians point to the Bush years as depressing evidence of conservatives’ lack of commitment to “libertarian means.”

Have the differences become too vast to bridge, or can libertarian-leaning Republicans like Sen. Rand Paul and Rep. Justin Amash breathe new life into post-Cold War fusionism? Join us for what promises to be a lively discussion of these issues.