From the same New York Times article:
Meanwhile, Megan McArdle, a libertarian writer, thinks conservative organizations will actually have a tougher time influencing policy if Senator McCain is elected. . . .
Indeed, to Ms. McArdle, the possibility of a Republican defeat holds a certain romantic appeal. “Younger people are kind of excited about being in the wilderness,” she said, evoking the pre-Reagan years when Republican thinkers plotted their revolution at nonprofit organizations and in bars instead of in the Executive Office Building and congressional majority offices. The longer you’re in power, the more you want to preserve it. “That’s where the Republicans are right now, and it’s demoralizing for think tankers.” Desperation has a way of focusing the mind. As Ms. McArdle said, “When they’re out of power, they have to think in a clearer way.”
Never having set foot in the Executive Office Building, I’m nevertheless dismayed by the “romantic appeal” of the wilderness for Ms. McArdle, who was in middle school the last time Democrats controlled both the White House and Congress. Should dissatisfaction with the status quo (almost universal on the Right) lead to the unconservative idea that change — any change, even Change — is progress?
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