IMPACT with Sam Clovis is a radio talk show focused on analysis and commentary concerning contemporary issues. The framework of analysis will be consistent with the intellectually developed principles of conservatism advocated by Russell Kirk, William F. Buckley, Jr., Irving Kristol and other icons of the conservative movement that gained prominence in the latter half of the 20th century.
Sam was raised by conservative parents and, over time, developed a strong philosophical base that has guided him in attempting to live a principled life. His analysis and commentary are founded on his profound belief in free will, natural law, common law and the covenant that is the fabric of American life—The Constitution of the United States. The Constitution describes the relationship among the citizens of the United States and between the people and their government. The Constitution should be followed based on its original intent and cannot be considered a living, relativistic set of guidelines that can be twisted to the whims of contemporary society. Only by securing the traditions of the past may we ever hope to secure the future.
The structure of contemporary conservative thought is built around four pillars. Those pillars are institutional conservatism, social conservatism, fiscal conservatism and international or security conservatism. Institutional conservatism examines the behaviors of Congress, the President, the Judiciary, and the adherence to the original intent of the Constitution. Institutional conservatives believe in small government and a government that is responsive to the preferences of the people. These conservatives also believe that the best government is the government closest to the people. Government, and governance, that is most influenced by special interests—factions as Madison called them—should be brought to heel and held to account. Elected officials that forget their oaths of office should be reminded that they serve at the pleasure of the people.
Fiscal conservatives believe that governments at all levels should operate within the resources provided by the people. That means that all governments, particularly the central government, should balance annual budgets and should operate in such a manner as to create an environment that reduces, rather than increases, citizen dependence on government. A secure banking system, fair and free markets and prudent government spending are the guideposts that should guide all elected officials.
Social conservatives believe in the sanctity of life from conception on and in the social constructs that lead to community strength and resilience. Those constructs include the sanctity of marriage, protection of the nuclear family, a reverence for, but not a dependence on, the religious underpinnings of society and individual accountability for individual actions. Those actions that impose costs on society--abortion, out of wedlock births, dropping out of school, engaging in destructive behaviors, criminal behavior and abetting illegal entry into the United States, to name a few—should become the priority of society in holding those accountable that choose to damage society through their behavior. As the strongest correlates to health and prosperity are family strength and educational attainment, the goal of all communities should be to create environments where families are strengthened and education and lifelong learning are ways of life. For those citizens that truly need the support of the community, compassion and generosity should be extended to elevate these neighbors and friends to levels where they are independent and able to contribute constructively to society.
Security conservatives believe in security through strength. A robust, able and agile military is the foundation of national security. The national government of the United States should not be adventurous or capricious in international dealings. On the contrary, the United States should be modest, prudent and deliberate in its dealing with international partners. The exercise of decisive military power should only occur if American interests are threatened and all other mechanisms of power have been fruitless in yielding results that protect those interests. Service to the nation should be honored and recognized by the citizens of the nation.