So, why "neo-neocon"?
The short answer is, "Because it stands for "neophyte neocon." And that's pretty much what I am.
The longer answer is: when I started this blog, I chose the name without too much deep reflection. But I know what I had in mind. "Neocon" is usually used as a pejorative, unfortunately, and I wanted to try to rescue it from this fate and wear it proudly (although somewhat tongue-in-cheek).
When I was a liberal and liberals were under attack, I used to say that I didn't understand what all the fuss was about. Of course, now I understand a lot better, since I'm making some of that fuss myself. I think I always was more of a classic liberal (as in "social liberal or mild libertarian") than a leftist-type liberal (as in "thinking the US is a force for capitalist global imperialist evil"). I used to say to critics that I was proud to call myself a liberal.
Now I'm doing essentially the same thing regarding being a neocon. "Neocon" is used by critics as a code word for a lot of things, among them: imperialist, unrealistic dreamer, and scheming puppeteer (along with its subset, scheming evil Jewish puppeteer).
I am not using it in any of these senses. I am using it to mean a person, socially liberal, who espouses a foreign policy that includes the vigorous support of the spread of democracy and guarantees of human liberty around the world. Neocons usually believe that such a spread of democracy/liberty would be both a good thing in and of itself, and a practical thing as well, since the belief is that it will lead to greater peace and prosperity for everyone, including the US.
The "neo" in "neocon" traditionally also refers to the fact that the originators of this position came mostly from the ranks of liberals or even leftists. Although it's not always used this way any more, it is another way in which the word seems to apply pretty well to me. And since my political change has been relatively recent, I thought the extra "neo" would be particularly appropriate.
For more neocon information, go here. In the article, Max Boot offers an interesting synonym for neoconservatism--"hard Wilsonianism" (as opposed to the "soft" Wilsonianism of liberals). I like it, even though the phrase doesn't exactly fall trippingly off the tongue. It links the neocons to an earlier tradition of internationalism, giving the movement some historical context.