This story got lost a bit in the newsflash about Steve Jobs
. But it's a key signpost as we go into 2012. Freshman Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), maybe the risingest of the rising stars of the GOP, gave a speech in Washington in which he declared that key social insurance programs like Social Security and Medicare have "weakened us as a people
," i.e., undermined the moral fabric and strength fo the American people.
This isn't a shocking statement. Most conservatives would likely agree with me that it's one of the three or four main ideas animating Movement Conservatism over the last half century. But it seldom gets brought out so conspicuously for public consumption by a politician who is widely believed -- and clearly himself believes -- he has national office in his future.