The Economist is Keynesian with mercantilist undertones. Any Republican, and there are many, who get their ideas from this literature is no true free-market, fiscal conservative let alone a Constitutionalist. Yeah, it can have some good reads but it's Establishment aka about state power—and that is not really conservative. Your cousin just sounds ignorant and misinformed.
He sounds like he may be a NeoCon. Just have to know more about his FP. Suzzer, I don't think you really know what a conservative is...thanks to modern media.
Serious, if republicans ever come back from around the bend? You mean their shift to the left the past ten years or so?
“Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the Government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.” — James Madison