Over the past century, a powerful political and intellectual movement-some call it liberalism-has transformed constitutional government by consent of the governed into a bureaucratic state administered by bureaucratic experts. This new government knows no limits to its own power. Its might is its right. If it is not stopped, if it is not reversed, the American experiment in self-government is in jeopardy. Conservatives rightly oppose the new liberal form of government. But their successes have been narrow. Does anyone think government is getting smaller? Even when conservatives win elections, liberalism is only temporarily slowed. Its march continues.
Today the American mind is confused on many of the most pressing political and moral problems. A growing number of our citizens can no longer recognize why traditional marriage is good. Our politicians do not understand what it means to be a citizen, and they refuse to enforce the basic rule of law that governs how people from around the globe enter our country. Among citizens and politicians alike, many fail to see why America should defend itself from armed foreign enemies who have already proven willing and able to strike us with deadly force.
With a view to solving these and the many other problems we face as a nation, the Claremont Institute offers its Abraham Lincoln Fellowship program. Why Lincoln? In his day, Americans were quickly abandoning the principles of right, foremost the principle of natural human equality, upon which both the moral law and free society rest. Lincoln understood that the crisis of his time required arguments, teaching and persuading Americans that they abandon the principles of the Founding at their own peril.
The problems we face today also require arguments. They require an understanding of the basic principles of self-government, the basic conditions of free society, and an ability to articulate how those principles inform the debates over important public policies. Conservatives will not achieve enduring victories until they re-adopt the principles of freedom and limited government, the principles of Lincoln and the American Founders. This is what we teach in the Lincoln Fellowship program.
Up to ten Lincoln Fellows will be selected. Each will receive an honorarium as well as travel, lodging, and meals, and join us August 7-15, 2004, in beautiful Newport Beach, California. Study will include the American Founding, the progressive rejection of the Founding, and a survey of contemporary politics both liberal and conservative. Some of the people who have participated in the Lincoln Fellows program in the past include:
- White House speechwriters
- Senior staff for members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate
- U.S. Department of Justice speechwriters and counsel
- Head of United States Office of Special Counsel
- Director of the President's Council on Bioethics
- Senior writers for the Weekly Standard and National Review
- The President of a conservative public-policy organization
- Director of the Home School Legal Defense Association's National Center for Home Education
We encourage applicants who are working in the arena of national public policy, and who understand the need to shape public opinion if we are to recover limited constitutional government. The Lincoln Fellowship program is helping us grow the ranks of Claremont Conservatives, those who find the solutions to our changing political problems in the unchanging principles of the Declaration of Independence. In this way we honor the namesake of the program by doing what we believe he would do today. For more information, please visit the Claremont Institute's website, or contact the director of the program, Thomas Krannawitter, at firstname.lastname@example.org.