The Commentary blog is one of the best going these days, and just yesterday Noah Rothman offered on it an insight that is simple yet coruscating. Rothman was explaining why the conservative argument to the electorate has "never been trendy." Rothman wrote:

It promises voters nothing but the fruits of their own labor and to keep government out of their way. Some reform-minded conservatives, aware of the unappealing nature of bootstrap-ism, have identified in Donald Trump’s ascension a confirmation of their own preconceptions about the problematic brand of conservatism.

Yes, while conservatives promise the fruits of one's own labor, liberals promise voters the fruits of other people's labor. Free college and free medical care, paid for by the labors of others–how can that compete with a mere promise of the liberty to earn your own way, unimpeded by regulation and high taxes, and spend your own money?

Rothman's blog, however, is not just about how supply-side economics, constitutional originalism, and a strong national defense aren't as popular during the primaries as many reformist conservatives had hoped.

It is about the popularity of Donald Trump, who, while he did not win the GOP nomination, had a very good night last night. Trump, whose policy prescriptions are at best mercurial, has risen on something other than arguments.

You can read Rothman's analysis for yourselves. But what I do want to highlight, as we head into the final stretch before nominating standard bearers of the two major political parties, is Rothman's warning against making these decisions based on anger:

Inchoate and directionless hatred is not productive; it’s self-defeating. Stewing resentment isn’t righteous; it’s self-indulgent. Self-pity isn’t constructive; it’s paralyzing. What makes conservatism such an unappealing philosophy when the alternative is the promise of largess confiscated from the faceless well-to-do is that it rejects the idea that one’s own lot is not of their making. It is a philosophy that rejects blame shifting when confronted with adversity. This is, at root, why Trump’s rise is a rejection of conservatism.

For those who aren’t imposing upon him their hopes and are instead listening to what he’s proposed, his platform is not a positive one. He promises nothing so much as a cathartic release for people who want to see the pain they’ve experienced for so long meted out to others. This is a toxic philosophy and one that will only heighten public resentment when the relief their Savior has promised fails to materialize.

Dennis Prager also has a very good piece on gratuitous hatred–it got the ancient Israelites and we shouldn't let it get us.