Conservatism

John Randolph of Roanoke & the Formation of a Southern Conservatism

By |2019-05-23T22:19:37-05:00May 23rd, 2019|Categories: American Founding, Civil Society, Conservatism, Economics, History, John Randolph of Roanoke, South|

John Randolph of Roanoke, one of the great exponents of the Southern political tradition, knew that what was proper to any state government was the preservation of the received order. The duty of the citizen of the commonwealth was to resist any legislative or constitutional changes to the received order, and to grant a [...]

Reflections on Imaginative Conservatism

By |2019-07-10T10:46:39-05:00May 21st, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, E.B., Eva Brann, Featured, Imagination, St. John's College, The Imaginative Conservative, Timeless Essays|

Pine by Albrecht Durer (Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join Dr. Eva Brann as she examines imagination, conservatism, time and eternity. —W. Winston Elliott III, Publisher) I wish to dedicate this essay to a writer of books whose greatness is at once utterly at home in America [...]

Ten Conservative Principles

By |2019-06-06T18:45:02-05:00May 20th, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, Essential, Featured, RAK, Russell Kirk|

Being neither a religion nor an ideology, the body of opinion termed conservatism possesses no Holy Writ and no Das Kapital to provide dogmata. So far as it is possible to determine what conservatives believe, the first principles of the conservative persuasion are derived from what leading conservative writers and public men have professed [...]

Timothy Carney’s “Alienated America” & the Future of the American Dream

By |2019-05-16T13:11:57-05:00May 16th, 2019|Categories: Books, Civil Society, Community, Conservatism, Social Institutions|

Timothy Carney’s book "Alienated America" tackles a crucial question that too few policymakers and news commentators even bother asking anymore: What is at the root of America’s contemporary cultural and social malaise? The short answer, according to Mr. Carney, is the deterioration of civil society. Alienated America: Why Some Places Thrive While Other Places Collapse, [...]

The Honorable Roger Scruton and His Enemies

By |2019-05-15T23:14:50-05:00May 15th, 2019|Categories: Books, Civil Society, Conservatism, Roger Scruton, Western Civilization|

I know of no more comprehensive and reflective summary of conservatism than Sir Roger Scruton's "Conservatism: An Invitation to the Great Tradition." We should not expect conservative establishmentarians on either side of the Atlantic to pay it much heed, though, for the author has now been pushed into the ranks of the untouchables. Conservatism: An [...]

Measuring the Influence of Russell Kirk and Other Conservative Authors

By |2019-05-17T10:22:05-05:00May 12th, 2019|Categories: Christopher Dawson, Conservatism, Culture, Eric Voegelin, Irving Babbitt, Robert Nisbet, Russell Kirk|

By using Google’s Ngram Viewer, we find that Russell Kirk’s reputation hit its highpoint in 1964, and then began a painful decline that remained unabated until his death in 1994. What does Ngram tell us about other conservative authors, like Robert Nisbet, Leo Strauss, Eric Voegelin, and Christopher Dawson? While I would never consider [...]

Critiquing Robert Kagan’s Enlightenment Liberalism

By |2019-05-07T10:20:32-05:00May 6th, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, Democracy, Donald Trump, Liberalism, Natural Rights Tradition, Politics, Tyranny|

While Robert Kagan basically dismisses church and community in the development of liberalism, can there be any sadder but more important concession than his own admission that “liberalism has no particular answer” for what can legitimize its rights? An essay is meant to be very, very important when it consumes four giant pages in [...]

The Iconoclasm and Profanity of Roger Scruton’s Sacking

By |2019-05-03T10:08:53-05:00May 1st, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, Culture War, England, Free Speech, Paul Krause, Roger Scruton|

The impetuous call to sack Roger Scruton shows those who clamored for the blade of the guillotine to fall on his head for what they are. His sacking also shows the concerted effort to demonize and silence anyone outside the public orthodoxy of thought... Sir Roger Scruton is one of the preeminent conservative intellectuals in [...]

History and Historians

By |2019-04-30T14:06:25-05:00April 30th, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, History, Modernity|

The true historian attempts to recapture the past for its own sake. He goes about this goal intentionally, always resisting the temptation to eschew complexity for relatability. He is better able to get to the root of an inquiry, to discern what really happened from what we wanted to happen, to learn what past [...]

The Radicalism of Russell Kirk

By |2019-04-28T15:53:42-05:00April 28th, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, Libertarianism, Politics, Russell Kirk, The Conservative Mind|

The West has been undone by consumerism, the Sexual Revolution, outsourcing, urbanization, and centralization—all defended by modern conservatives as “the price we must pay” to live in a free and prosperous country. They’re wrong. As Russell Kirk argued, the principal function of government is not to ensure the material security and comfort of its [...]

How the Smart Set Was Wrong About Trump and the Unborn

By |2019-04-03T14:42:06-05:00April 3rd, 2019|Categories: Abortion, Conservatism, Culture War, Donald Trump, Politics|

President Trump recently took $60 million away from Planned Parenthood, the first president ever to do so. This and other unique pro-life initiatives of his turned my mind to certain claims made by the pro-life Smart Set back in those crazy days of the 2016 campaign. In March 2016, a group of old and very [...]

A Dangerous Conflation of Terms: “Anti-Israel” and “Anti-Semitic”

By |2019-03-11T00:32:08-05:00March 10th, 2019|Categories: Conservatism, Foreign Affairs, Israel, Joseph Mussomeli, Liberal, Politics|

Those who make too much of Representative Ilhan Omar’s statement, and who are happy to gain some short-term win by conflating legitimate concern over Israeli influence with anti-Semitism, run the risk of permanently connecting the two terms... I was sitting under a huge oak tree on my college campus reading a political science textbook when [...]

Tucker Carlson: A Buckley for Our Time?

By |2019-04-20T19:53:55-05:00March 5th, 2019|Categories: Books, Conservatism, Donald Trump, Politics|

  While Tucker Carlson’s rhetorical reach may not stretch as far and wide as William F. Buckley’s, Mr. Carlson evokes the same gaily combative spirit that young conservatives of the 1960s admired in the founder of National Review. The Bill Buckley of the paleoconservatives has arrived, and just in time for the Trump era. While [...]