WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: The Age Of Hamilton.
As President Obama travels to John Brown’s old stomping ground in Osawatomie, Kansas where Theodore Roosevelt made his New Nationalism speech in 1910, Newt Gingrich has announced that he is a Theodore Roosevelt Republican.
If you asked Theodore Roosevelt what kind of Republican he was, he would — and did — tell you that he was a proud standard bearer of the Hamiltonian tradition in American politics.
Ron Paul, who would have fought TR tooth and nail as much as he is currently fighting both President Obama and ex-Speaker Newt would agree. Gingrich, Obama and TR are all Hamiltonians, and Ron Paul thinks they are all dead wrong.
As we gear up for 2012 and beyond, American attention is increasingly returning to the oldest battle in our political history: the battle between the Hamiltonians and Jeffersonians that split George Washington’s cabinet down the middle and established our first party system.
That fight was essentially over three things that divide us intensely today: the role of the federal government, the nature of the credit system, and the future of the social hierarchy.
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