POLITICS: Principles v. Fragments

"Could we only hit upon a few great principles," wrote a fellow Democrat to Martin Van Buren during the campaign of 1828, "we should succeed beyond a doubt." In the campaign year 1954, the same politico might have begun: "If we only knew what to do with the principles at hand, we should succeed beyond a doubt," and his prescription would fit either party.

The U.S. lives today in the grip of great principles. The challenge to the free world is Communism—political, military and economic. This challenge dictates the major factors in the...

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