Newt’s New Ideas

I think I’ve made this point before, but for added conservocredibility take note of Ross Douthat’s post on the scant grounds for thinking that Newt Gingrich has any “new ideas” to offer:

If you find Newt’s manifesto — which urged Republicans to “overhaul the census and cut its budget radically,” to “implement a space-based, GPS-style air traffic control system,” and to double down on porkbusting, among other ideas — to be a plausible blueprint for a Republican revival, then he’s your man.

At his best, Gingrich is good at dressing up an interest-group agenda (let us drill more places) as something somewhat more ennobling. Which is, in the right circumstances, a useful skill for a politician to have. But it’s not where actual new ideas come from.