While he calls them “conservatives,” I think George Will actually means classical liberals. That’s okay. Most people don’t know what a classical liberal is these days. Will hits the nail on the head when he says they understand the law of unintended consequences.
The unintended consequences of bold government undertakings are apt to be larger than, and contrary to, the intended ones.
Conservatives’ pessimism is conducive to their happiness in three ways. First, they are rarely surprised — they are right more often than not about the course of events. Second, when they are wrong, they are happy to be so. Third, because pessimistic conservatives put not their faith in princes — government — they accept that happiness is a function of fending for oneself. They believe that happiness is an activity — it is inseparable from the pursuit of happiness.
Good article — suggest you read the whole thing.