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?