Heh. I was just idly thinking today about how much I hate the cliché of titling a book or article “Why [subject here] matter[s]”, when the news comes out that Newt Gingrich is releasing a book titled A Nation Like No Other: Why American Exceptionalism Matters.
Based on the book’s description, it sounds like he’s making the old argument that “American Exceptionalism” derives from the American hostility to government. Maybe so. But, as I wrote in response to similar remarks by Jonah Goldberg:
“Americans are more instinctively hostile to government than most. Yet, this is not always the case. After all, didn’t most people readily believe the government’s worst-case claims about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq?”
My point is that the people who speak of “American Exceptionalism” and “small government” do not always behave accordingly–specifically, when Republicans are in power, they are willing to tolerate–even embrace–expansions of government power.