Today's conservative movement is largely brain-dead, complains Steven F. Hayward. The deep thinkers of yesteryear have given way to shallow sloganeers from the mass media. Who will be the movement's intellectual savior? Hayward sees hope in an unexpected person: Glenn Beck. Yes, he weeps on cue, but he alone is proving that it's "possible to engage in some real thought" while filling airtime.
For one, Beck books young conservative scholars for substantive dissections of modern liberalism, notes Hayward in the Washington Post. "Their writing is often dense and difficult, but Beck not only reads it, he assigns it to his staff." Beck will never be confused with brainiac William F. Buckley, but the Fox News host is on the right track. "He just might be helping restore the equilibrium between the elite and populist sides of conservatism."