Orange County 1960's: the Conservative Movement

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Orange County 1960's: The conservative movement

The conservative movement that arose in the Orange Country during the 60's had many different contradictory attitudes. Some people thought of it as a meaningless span of time in which the government had been put on pause while others saw it as a crucial foundation for America's future. McGirr clearly seems to be no follower for Orange County conservatism, but she is still able to keep her disagreements from breaking through in her writing. McGirr gives the audience an understanding the ‘60s political struggles, one in which even conservatives proposed radical ideas that fundamentally reshaped the political and cultural landscape. Since most of Orange County residents in the ‘50s and ‘60s were migrants, largely from the Midwest, did not necessarily make them traditionalists. These migrants, McGirr writes, mixed with Orange County's "cultural traditions, its conservative regional elite, its mode of development... [to provide] the ingredients from which the Right would create a movement. First, there were the ‘old-timers,' the large ranchers and small farmers, merchants, shop owners, and middle-class townspeople who had embraced a strong individualism and strict morals for many years. Added to this older conservatism were the southland's ‘cowboy capitalists,' the new boom-time entrepreneurs who made their fortunes in the post - World War II era of affluence and spent their capital and their energy spreading the gospel of laissez-faire capitalism and an anti-Washington ethos. Together with ranchers-turned-property-developers, county boosters, and real estate speculators, they created a built world that affirmed the values of privacy, individualism, and property rights and weakened a sense of cohesive community, providing an opening for organizations, churches, and missionary zealots that could provide one." Orange County's contradictory anti-state philosophy that dominated a place founded by the government and...
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