“You’d think that after eight years of George W. Bush, conservatives would have discovered a new respect for the difficulty of successful governance. Yet just as Tanenhaus diagnosed: it is cultural hostility that still most excites our passions…

Cultural populism comes in many forms, and it’s not at all clear that Palin’s particular style of populism has much shelf life. The resentments of the future are much more likely to be expressed with a Latino accent.

In one respect, at least, I very much agree with [Yuval] Levin. The Palin story was always less about Palin, and more about the response to Palin. And the continuing inability of even our conservative best and brightest to elevate their concern for the responsibilities of government over their cultural animosities suggests that this story’s most painful chapters remain to be written.”