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From the Wall Street Journal:

BOOKSHELF

A Conservative Showdown

Walter Berns and Harry Jaffa, giants of American intellectualism, waged a war over the Declaration of Independence.

By WILLIAM ANTHONY HAY

April 28 2017

Patriotism is Not Enough: Harry Jaffa, Walter Berns and the Arguments that Redefined American Conservatism. By Steven F. Hayward (Encounter, 289 pages, $25.99)

The cliche has it that academic disputes are especially vicious because the stakes are so low. But now and then the stakes are high indeed. Over the course of several decades, two political philosophers battled over how best to understand American democracy. …

In “Patriotism Is Not Enough,” Steven F. Hayward presents a memoir of his own dealings with these remarkable men— Walter Berns and Harry V. Jaffa, who died on the same day in 2015—and traces their points of difference to a larger debate over the principles that guide American democracy. …

At the heart of Mr. Hayward’s narrative is Leo Strauss (1899-1973), the German émigré who taught for many years at the University of Chicago. Strauss looked to classical Greek philosophy as a source of wisdom rather than regarding it as a mere historical episode. A charismatic teacher, he shared with his students his concern—especially pressing in the 1960s—that Western society had lost its sense of purpose and legitimacy and faced a crisis. He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.

Although Strauss looked to antiquity for political wisdom, several of his students and protégés, including Berns and Jaffa—who would go on to academic careers, Berns at Cornell and Jaffa at Claremont-McKenna—devoted themselves to the texts of the American founding. …

It was with such foundational documents that the quarrel began. Mr. Hayward traces the rift to a stroll in Claremont, Calif., in the early 1970s, when Berns said to Jaffa that the opening of the Declaration of Independence was one of the best things ever written, “but the ending was one of the worst.” Mr. Hayward quotes a contemporary observer saying: “And the fight was on.”

The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …

For Berns, though, “natural rights aren’t worth a darn thing without a government to secure them,” as Mr. Hayward puts it. The key passage in the Declaration, for Berns, was: “To secure these rights, governments are instituted among Men.” A “strong but decent government,” Mr. Hayward writes, summarizing Berns’s view, “transforms natural rights into civil rights by a supreme act of positive law—in our case, the Constitution.”

The words that Berns deplored at the end of the Declaration referred to the “protection of Divine Providence.” Protection, he might have said, comes from law itself: from the lapidary Constitution. This divide is distantly visible in current debates in the Supreme Court, when a statute is said to threaten or secure certain rights. For Jaffa and like-minded thinkers, the origin of those rights is self-evident. For others, it is less so—one reason that Berns warned against letting natural rights play a large role in jurisprudence: The chances for rights-fueled overreaching was too great, he believed, threatening the Constitution’s practical wisdom. …

Both men, guided by Strauss, opposed value-free social science, believing that the study of society required not quantitative analysis but a philosophic examination of first principles and their application. …

And what of the people whom statesmen must lead? Berns and Jaffa both recognized that democracy, with its susceptibility to momentary passions, presented a challenge to citizenship. Berns in particular noted how important it was, in America, to form the character of citizens so that, as Mr. Hayward summarizes, “they will give their consent to wise leadership and withhold it from fools, bigots, and demagogues.”

Thus patriotism needs to be taught, and it is best taught by inculcating the principles of democratic liberty. …

By giving Leo Strauss such a central role, however, he inevitably slights other approaches to the founding era. Forrest McDonald, for instance, overthrew Charles Beard’s economic interpretation of the Constitution by challenging the facts on which it rested. That project, pursued in the 1950s, was forensic rather than philosophical. In more recent years, scholars like Pauline Maier and Jack P. Greene have stressed the historical precedents and contemporary debates that shaped key founding episodes.

For Mr. Hayward, the Straussians—not just Jaffa and Berns but a cluster of scholars and public intellectuals—redefined American conservatism. He argues that, thanks to their work, the preoccupations of midcentury conservatism gave way to an outlook that newly valued the country’s first principles. Mr. Hayward sees the result as a more analytically rigorous and thus politically effective conservatism. Here he overstates the case. Other conservative traditions remained robust—populist, traditionalist, religious, nationalist, communitarian—and indeed play a prominent part in our roiling political moment. They often emphasize the empirical over the philosophical, the wisdom of custom and lived experience over metaphysics. …

Mr. Hay’s biography of Lord Liverpool, Britain’s prime minister in 1812-27, will be published next year.

 
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  1. Today, I commented on a Daily Mail article concerning the frequent jailing of men on false rape charges. I said that we are obsessed with ideology to the point where there is a de facto assumption of guilt except in the case of Rotherham where, due to the ethnicity of the perpetrators, genuine rape victims were ignored or even themselves subjected to persecution.

    I received the following reply:

    (The really creepy bit is where they threaten to contact my employer. RIP democracy in the UK.)

    User has been banned.
    M
    [email protected]

    Reply|
    Today, 11:47 a.m.
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    Getting too much email from [email protected]? You can unsubscribe
    Hello,

    Your account has been permanently de- activated for going against the Community Guidelines.

    You are no longer allowed to post on the Daily Mail or other Associated Newspapers Ltd sites using this or any other user. Please be advised that should you post again we reserve the right to contact your ISP/employer and seek that action is taken against you.

    Regards,
    Senior Community Editor
    Daily Mai

    Read More
    • Replies: @Rod1963
    The UK is finished. It's white intellectuals and elites have went totally insane and totalitarian.

    Though we in the U.S. and in particular CA isn't far behind.

    http://reason.com/volokh/2017/12/29/calif-prosecuting-man-for-insulting-post

    At best we're maybe 4-5 years behind you folks in the UK. All Trump did was buy us a bit of time, still he can't stop the states from declaring war on whites
    , @Anon
    https://youtu.be/m9-R8T1SuG4
    , @pyrrhus
    The UK makes China look like a libertarian paradise....But I thought freedom of speech was guaranteed by Britain's "unwritten" Constitution??? Suckers....

    The UK is dead, dead, dead.

    , @Sean
    After years (!) of criminal investigation no evidence of "misconduct in a public office" by Rotherham police has been found. Just a safe job with a big pension.
    , @Stephen R. Diamond
    Expect more from that trashy tabloid?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  2. Straussianism lends the tendency a gravitas it ill deserves.

    My term for it is windbaggery.

    Not restricted to the “Straussians”. I’d include

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Bobbitt

    A prince of windbags. No personal animus other than picking up a copy of “The Shield of Achilles” in a charity shop based on the blurbs and wasting too many hours wading through a muskeg of turgidity.

    Read More
    • Agree: Zumbuddi
    • Replies: @PV van der Byl
    Bobbitt is Lyndon Johnson's nephew. But he has degrees from Princeton, Yale Law, and Oxford. The wind must be hereditary, the pretentiousness acquired.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  3. Jaffa was wrong. The Declaration was a press release justifying secession, nothing more. And the ‘all men are created equal’ stuff seems a pretty straightforward shot aimed at the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs and given its context unlikely to be declaring all men materially equal much less all peoples.

    Edgar Lee Masters understood Lincoln better. Lincoln’s great insight was realizing that creating moral panics is a good way to litigate the meaning of things, things like constitutions.

    Read More
    • Replies: @dearieme
    "the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs": a notion that was a century out of date when the D of I was written. War and revolution the 17th century established that the king's right to the throne was in the hands of Parliament, both in England and in Scotland.

    Either Jefferson and his cronies didn't understand this, or they routinely lied about it. My money's on the latter.
    , @Art Deco
    Edgar Lee Masters

    The guy that wrote Spoon River Anthology? No thanks.
    , @syonredux

    The Declaration was a press release justifying secession,
     
    It was written to justify revolution.
    , @guest
    Lincoln was a politician, and so was Jefferson. They weren't philosophers, and people who take them to be talking about Eternal Verities make themselves ridiculous.

    (Master's book Lincoln, the Man is a page-turner. I'd warn he has axes to grind, but it's good to hear other sides. Especially considering Official Lincoln is made of cardboard.)

    Jaffa needed to learn a thing or two about to that little discipline we call rhetoric.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  4. Forrest, trees. The Constitution was made for Anglo-Saxons, not Spanish, not French, nor Africans, and certainly not women. If they were crafting a constitution with that suffrage in mind they would have written a very different constitution, or none at all. This is the worst of all democratic worlds converging as a single rootless mind.

    Read More
    • Agree: ia
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  5. Walter Berns and Harry Jaffa, giants of American intellectualism,

    Who could forget those two?

    Read More
    • LOL: Twodees Partain
    • Replies: @Antlitz Grollheim
    so much for American intellectualism
    , @Father O'Hara
    Didn't Harry Jaffa play Dr. Zorba on Ben Casey?
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  6. @Curle
    Jaffa was wrong. The Declaration was a press release justifying secession, nothing more. And the ‘all men are created equal’ stuff seems a pretty straightforward shot aimed at the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs and given its context unlikely to be declaring all men materially equal much less all peoples.

    Edgar Lee Masters understood Lincoln better. Lincoln’s great insight was realizing that creating moral panics is a good way to litigate the meaning of things, things like constitutions.

    “the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs”: a notion that was a century out of date when the D of I was written. War and revolution the 17th century established that the king’s right to the throne was in the hands of Parliament, both in England and in Scotland.

    Either Jefferson and his cronies didn’t understand this, or they routinely lied about it. My money’s on the latter.

    Read More
    • Replies: @syonredux
    It really had more to do with the fact that the colonists were not represented in Parliament.
    , @Paul Jolliffe
    Oh, I think Jefferson and company knew well the theoretical limits on the king's powers, but they really believed that they were witnessing things that "evinces a design to reduce them to Absolute Despotism . . .".

    I think Jefferson had a point. He did, after all, cite 27 specific examples in the middle portion, the indictment.

    Anyway, he understood the value of identifying one particular villian ("He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts" etc.) rather than a general body, such as Parliament.

    Jefferson was writing for a mass audience, and I agree that it is easier to get get people fired up when the accusatory finger is pointed at one person ("He did it") rather than a group.

    Isn't it as simple as that?

    (Or, did Disney get it right back in 1953, beginning at the 8:00 minute mark?)

    https://youtu.be/gMoC4Ckzy2E
    , @Cortes
    And if Jefferson was under any misapprehension a recent immigrant might have set him straight:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Witherspoon
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  7. Both men, guided by Strauss, opposed value-free social science, believing that the study of society required not quantitative analysis but a philosophic examination of first principles and their application.

    It’s difficult to believe either man was foolish with this degree of thoroughness. Then again, maybe. I was cured of an interest in reading any of Berns work many years ago when he submitted a short piece commissioned by the editors of The New Republic. They asked about 30 people to submit an idea for a constitutional amendment. You had some gag responses (several people suggested an amendment to eliminate the designated hitter rule) and some twee responses (Victor Navasky wanted capital punishment debarred). The prize for inanity went to Berns, who said, in all seriousness, that he wanted an amendment to debar further amendments. Some years later he accepted a position on the board of the Institute on Religion and Public Life, then resigned in a fury (denouncing its director in the rudest terms) when they published a series of articles arguing that misbehavior in the appellate judiciary was robbing the political order of its legitimacy, hardly an incendiary point.

    The guy taught at Cornell for decades. Maybe his career was testament to the observation that the academic job market was quite soft for the first 25 years of the postwar period.

    Read More
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  8. @Curle
    Jaffa was wrong. The Declaration was a press release justifying secession, nothing more. And the ‘all men are created equal’ stuff seems a pretty straightforward shot aimed at the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs and given its context unlikely to be declaring all men materially equal much less all peoples.

    Edgar Lee Masters understood Lincoln better. Lincoln’s great insight was realizing that creating moral panics is a good way to litigate the meaning of things, things like constitutions.

    Edgar Lee Masters

    The guy that wrote Spoon River Anthology? No thanks.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Curle
    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.
    , @MIkey Darmody
    Spoon River has some high points:

    "In many a watchful hour at night,
    Do you remember the letter I wrote you
    Of the beautiful love of Christ?
    And whether you ever took it or not,
    My, boy, wherever you are,
    Work for your soul's sake,
    That all the clay of you, all the dross of you,
    May yield to the fire of you,
    Till the fire is nothing but light!...
    Nothing but light!"
    , @guest
    Spoon River is not great as poetry, but it has good narrative and for lack of a better term social commentary. A bit too much of the Eminent Victorian style of gossip about the dirty underbelly of small town America. Moderns can be so callow, as if no one ever figured out people were naughty before. But it's a good corrective to wallow in naughtiness once in a while, so long as it's not prurient.

    Most importantly, the interweaving stories are captivating.

    I can't comment on the scholarship demonstrated in Lincoln, the Man, but it's polemics are captivating and it is a good read. And it's good to see a famous poet succeeding in another literary genre. Our poets are useless these days. I like to remember they could be men of letters, too, at one point.

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  9. @22pp22
    Today, I commented on a Daily Mail article concerning the frequent jailing of men on false rape charges. I said that we are obsessed with ideology to the point where there is a de facto assumption of guilt except in the case of Rotherham where, due to the ethnicity of the perpetrators, genuine rape victims were ignored or even themselves subjected to persecution.

    I received the following reply:

    (The really creepy bit is where they threaten to contact my employer. RIP democracy in the UK.)

    User has been banned.
    M
    [email protected]


    Reply|
    Today, 11:47 a.m.
    You
    Getting too much email from [email protected]? You can unsubscribe
    Hello,

    Your account has been permanently de- activated for going against the Community Guidelines.

    You are no longer allowed to post on the Daily Mail or other Associated Newspapers Ltd sites using this or any other user. Please be advised that should you post again we reserve the right to contact your ISP/employer and seek that action is taken against you.

    Regards,
    Senior Community Editor
    Daily Mai

    The UK is finished. It’s white intellectuals and elites have went totally insane and totalitarian.

    Though we in the U.S. and in particular CA isn’t far behind.

    http://reason.com/volokh/2017/12/29/calif-prosecuting-man-for-insulting-post

    At best we’re maybe 4-5 years behind you folks in the UK. All Trump did was buy us a bit of time, still he can’t stop the states from declaring war on whites

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anonymous
    I got permanently banned from ABC News for a similar observation, and it was comparatively mild. I merely pointed out that some popular stories may be hoaxes.

    Since I was banned instantly I concluded that the word "hoax" may not be spoken in polite society, since of course hoaxes never happen and you must be racist and sexist for believing otherwise.
    , @22pp22
    In good British English it should be "request that action BE taken against you". I get the impression that the person who wrote this is not an L1 speaker of English, just another AA hire paid good money to bully the locals.
    , @unpc downunder
    British totalitarianism could well be a sign of elite insecurity. They may have a genuine concern about Britain going the same way of other indigenous white countries like Austria. American elites don't need to be so heavy-handed because white nationalism in North America and Australia is pretty much a mickey-mouse movement which poses no serious threat to mainstream conservatism.
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  10. @Art Deco
    Edgar Lee Masters

    The guy that wrote Spoon River Anthology? No thanks.

    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.

    Read More
    • Replies: @syonredux

    And Lincoln The Man.
     
    A laughably bad book.
    , @Reg Cæsar

    ...Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.
     
    Not to mention his insane belief that a bunch of overheated states with five million Africans had any place in a federation of white republics.

    Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close-- way too close-- to the even more effeminate Alabamian King, who more than anyone put the "vice" in the Vice Presidency. Fillmore, the last Whig, should have done the job.
    , @Art Deco
    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln,

    The number of Lincoln biographies is, if I'm not mistaken, expressed in four digits. Not buying the idea that anyone bar a scatter of academic specialists is comprehensively familiar with the oeuvre.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
  11. @22pp22
    Today, I commented on a Daily Mail article concerning the frequent jailing of men on false rape charges. I said that we are obsessed with ideology to the point where there is a de facto assumption of guilt except in the case of Rotherham where, due to the ethnicity of the perpetrators, genuine rape victims were ignored or even themselves subjected to persecution.

    I received the following reply:

    (The really creepy bit is where they threaten to contact my employer. RIP democracy in the UK.)

    User has been banned.
    M
    [email protected]


    Reply|
    Today, 11:47 a.m.
    You
    Getting too much email from [email protected]? You can unsubscribe
    Hello,

    Your account has been permanently de- activated for going against the Community Guidelines.

    You are no longer allowed to post on the Daily Mail or other Associated Newspapers Ltd sites using this or any other user. Please be advised that should you post again we reserve the right to contact your ISP/employer and seek that action is taken against you.

    Regards,
    Senior Community Editor
    Daily Mai

    Read More
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  12. @27 year old

    Walter Berns and Harry Jaffa, giants of American intellectualism,
     
    Who could forget those two?

    so much for American intellectualism

    Read More
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  13. Some Strauss for the New Year:

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  14. He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.

    Is there a right more natural than that of a population group in the process of speciation to continue on its way? Of course no “serious” philosopher acknowledges it. I’d say they (Straussians, neocons, etc., very much included) overwhelmingly oppose that natural right (for Whites anyway).

    The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …

    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water…

    “Secession for America from Britain but not for the South from the Union” doesn’t strike me as equality. More like the opposite.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding, and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it. And secession was how the USA was founded.

    Read More
    • Replies: @syonredux

    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water…
     
    Let's see, the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863, and the 13 Amendment was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, by the House on January 31, 1865, and the required number of states on December 6, 1865....Given the cumbersome nature of the amendment process, that's not much of a gap.....
    , @syonredux

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding,
     
    And it was abolished during the Founding: Vermont (1777), Pennsylvania (1780), and Massachusetts (1781-83).

    and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.
     
    People weren't trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th....

    And secession was how the USA was founded.
     
    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860...
    , @Hibernian
    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most. The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.
    , @Reg Cæsar

    Slavery was there at the founding, and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.
     
    "Slavery", i.e., the presence of Africans on our soil, is by definition war on their fellow white Americans.
    , @Twodees Partain
    Yes, I agree. I'd also point out that Jaffa was delusional on the subject of Lincoln. Lincoln wasn't opposed to slavery, and he heartily approved of an amendment that would make slavery permanent in the US. Jaffa was delusional on other subjects as well, but he was an absolute bedbug on the subject of Lincoln.
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  15. Why can’t we acknowledge that our Western ideals of political freedom, social justice, and human equality are largely Biblical in origin? Things like freedom of speech, freedom of the press, etc., on the other hand, are American (US Constitution). The idea of rights as such is English, isn’t it, and closely connected to the state.

    Read More
    • LOL: Alden, dearieme
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  16. “For Mr. Hayward, the Straussians—not just Jaffa and Berns but a cluster of scholars and public intellectuals—redefined American conservatism. He argues that, thanks to their work, the preoccupations of midcentury conservatism gave way to an outlook that newly valued the country’s first principles. Mr. Hayward sees the result as a more analytically rigorous and thus politically effective conservatism.”

    The Straussian ‘conservative’ conserves only last decade’s and last year’s liberalism and the framework of inherited Empire. He talks metaphysics but acts pragmatically, usually will a strong will to power that would impress both Stalinists and Nazis.

    Read More
    • Agree: utu
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  17. Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was.

    Read More
    • Replies: @newrouter
    "Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was."

    Maybe the academic idiot/savant left arguing with the academic idiot/savant right over nothing of substance?
    , @Dr. X

    Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was.

     

    Sure.

    Strauss advocated a close analysis and reappraisal of the texts of what he called "ancient" philosophy (e.g., Plato, Aristotle etc.) because the questions and problems presented in those texts (Equality vs. inequality, What is justice?, What is the ideal regime? What is the proper exercise of political power?) were perennial, fixed in human nature, and thus relevant today.

    He was particularly critical of 20th century totalitarianisms, such as Nazism and communism, which believed that history constituted "progress" toward some kind of "new man" and thus believed that they had all the answers and that philosophy was unnecessary. Strauss's emphasis on the study ancient and classical texts appeared to be "conservative" in contrast not only with historicist doctrines such as communism, but in contrast with liberal democratic "progressivism" as well.

    Strauss also understood that throughout human history, to ask questions about justice and the proper use of political power was necessarily risky -- if not fatal, as the case of Socrates demonstrated. Therefore, in order to get his message out to the relatively few who could understand it and not run afoul of the authorities, Strauss recognized that political philosophers often spoke in esoteric rather than exoteric terms, and that a proper study of ancient texts necessitated an understanding of this problem and a close critical study of the text and of the political context for which they were written.
    , @vinteuil
    Straussianism is the doctrine of the followers of Leo Strauss (1899-1973). Since Strauss deliberately wrote obscurely, supposedly to avoid dogmatism, his followers fall into competing sects of dogmatists.

    The only thing they all seem to agree on is that deliberately writing obscurely is a good thing, and that the greatest philosophers, especially Plato, deliberately wrote obscurely.

    Their evidence for this is that they found parts of Plato's Republic uncongenial.
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  18. Like all ideologists, Jaffaites take a partial truth (political rights must be grounded in something other than mere convention) and run with it to the point of absurdity. Strauss himself was suspicious of Edmund Burke because he saw him as dangerously historicist in his attitude toward political principles. That’s enough to make me skeptical of Strauss.

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  19. Why can’t we acknowledge that our Western ideals of political freedom, social justice, and human equality are largely Biblical in origin?

    “Human equality” doesn’t strike me as a Biblical message, except in the narrow sense of eligibility for salvation. That’s really just universalism. Half the Bible is about Yahweh telling the Hebrews to kill this perfidious (and conveniently-located on prime real estate) villainous ethnicity or that. People say this is down to their actions, but (leaving aside how nobody in, say, China needed wiping out by the Hebrews) the collective punishment aspects (falling on children, even newborns) don’t seem consistent with that. Then there’s slavery, which is regulated, not banned (or even condemned, IIRC).

    More generally, half of what’s Biblical in origin isn’t Biblical in origin, coming to the Hebrews via Persia and the rest.

    Read More
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  20. @Art Deco
    Edgar Lee Masters

    The guy that wrote Spoon River Anthology? No thanks.

    Spoon River has some high points:

    “In many a watchful hour at night,
    Do you remember the letter I wrote you
    Of the beautiful love of Christ?
    And whether you ever took it or not,
    My, boy, wherever you are,
    Work for your soul’s sake,
    That all the clay of you, all the dross of you,
    May yield to the fire of you,
    Till the fire is nothing but light!…
    Nothing but light!”

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    • Replies: @MIkey Darmody
    It's not Shakespeare, but as far as Ohioan poetry goes, it's not bad:

    This is life’s sorrow:
    That one can be happy only where two are;
    And that our hearts are drawn to stars
    Which want us not.
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  21. Other conservative traditions remained robust—populist, traditionalist, religious, nationalist, communitarian—and indeed play a prominent part in our roiling political moment. They often emphasize the empirical over the philosophical, the wisdom of custom and lived experience over metaphysics.

    Which is another way of saying that those “other conservative traditions” are actually conservative, in contrast to whatever-it-is that the Straussians are peddling.

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  22. @Curle
    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.

    And Lincoln The Man.

    A laughably bad book.

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  23. @MIkey Darmody
    Spoon River has some high points:

    "In many a watchful hour at night,
    Do you remember the letter I wrote you
    Of the beautiful love of Christ?
    And whether you ever took it or not,
    My, boy, wherever you are,
    Work for your soul's sake,
    That all the clay of you, all the dross of you,
    May yield to the fire of you,
    Till the fire is nothing but light!...
    Nothing but light!"

    It’s not Shakespeare, but as far as Ohioan poetry goes, it’s not bad:

    This is life’s sorrow:
    That one can be happy only where two are;
    And that our hearts are drawn to stars
    Which want us not.

    Read More
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  24. @Svigor

    He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.
     
    Is there a right more natural than that of a population group in the process of speciation to continue on its way? Of course no "serious" philosopher acknowledges it. I'd say they (Straussians, neocons, etc., very much included) overwhelmingly oppose that natural right (for Whites anyway).

    The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …
     
    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water...

    "Secession for America from Britain but not for the South from the Union" doesn't strike me as equality. More like the opposite.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America's founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding, and I don't recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it. And secession was how the USA was founded.

    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water…

    Let’s see, the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863, and the 13 Amendment was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, by the House on January 31, 1865, and the required number of states on December 6, 1865….Given the cumbersome nature of the amendment process, that’s not much of a gap…..

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    • Replies: @Neil Templeton
    Abolition of slavery is a pretty thin reed for Moralists to cling to. Granted, no man wishes to be a slave. But most men weren't slaves. And slaves were drawn from a highly restricted population. In the current year, if given the proposition of almost certainly giving up something of high value, say liberty or life, in order to free someone from slavery who is very unlikely to be anyone you know, or would ever seek to know, what would the opinion polls say?
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  25. @Svigor

    He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.
     
    Is there a right more natural than that of a population group in the process of speciation to continue on its way? Of course no "serious" philosopher acknowledges it. I'd say they (Straussians, neocons, etc., very much included) overwhelmingly oppose that natural right (for Whites anyway).

    The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …
     
    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water...

    "Secession for America from Britain but not for the South from the Union" doesn't strike me as equality. More like the opposite.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America's founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding, and I don't recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it. And secession was how the USA was founded.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding,

    And it was abolished during the Founding: Vermont (1777), Pennsylvania (1780), and Massachusetts (1781-83).

    and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.

    People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th….

    And secession was how the USA was founded.

    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…

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    • Replies: @Samuel Skinner

    People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th….
     
    Nothing remarkable about that. Slavery in essence was irrelevant; merely an issue for Northerners to posture moral superiority over the South and crush their opposition. The issue was power- always was and always will be.

    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…
     
    Well yes, if you ignore the attempts by Northerners to kill Southerners and incite slave revolutions then there was absolutely no grounds. I personally like John Quincy Adams “Though it cost the blood of millions of white men, let it come. Let justice be done.” Lets tell Southerners that after Haiti, when the blacks exterminated all the whites on the island. I'm sure that will go over well.

    The Southern position was pretty simple. If the North had the power to abolish slavery, they would have- and use- the power to get the South to do any crazy thing Northerners desired. History has born out Southern fears.
    , @Reg Cæsar

    Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th….
     
    You can blame my cousin, Eli Whitney, for that. He's the one who made it pay.

    But the planters who cheated him out of his royalties bit their own descendants in the haunches. Because he turned from gins to guns.
    , @Curle
    “People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s.”

    You’ve got the order of causation backwards, there was no question in the early years that states could secede for any reason at all; no ‘reason’ was require, it was a voluntary compact of sovereign states. Slavery was irrelevant.
    , @The Alarmist

    "Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…"
     
    That was hardly a revolution. Aside from the King's men being waved off in 1783, very little changed in Colonial government and society. It was merely secession.
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  26. I’ve always thought that more attention should be paid to the Preamble to the Constitution:

    We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

    Gouverneur Morris was a wise man….

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  27. @dearieme
    "the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs": a notion that was a century out of date when the D of I was written. War and revolution the 17th century established that the king's right to the throne was in the hands of Parliament, both in England and in Scotland.

    Either Jefferson and his cronies didn't understand this, or they routinely lied about it. My money's on the latter.

    It really had more to do with the fact that the colonists were not represented in Parliament.

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    • Replies: @Neil Templeton
    I think it had more to do with the fact that the Colonists believed they were strong enough to avoid sharing returns on their investments with the Crown. Representation would have been a second best outcome.
    , @Anon
    "It really had more to do with the fact that the colonists were not represented in Parliament."

    Sure. Never mind that there was all this pristine land west of Ohio that George said the colonists couldn't touch. People never fight for their own tribe and economic interest. People fought and suffered horrific injuries before modern medicine because the greedy British hoarded all the good votes for themselves.
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  28. @Opinionator
    Could someone define "Straussianism"? I'm still unsure what this guy's contribution was.

    “Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was.”

    Maybe the academic idiot/savant left arguing with the academic idiot/savant right over nothing of substance?

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  29. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I don’t think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice. Convervatism is the practice of conserving what works; of not thowing out the baby with the bathwater in racing to embrace new ideas; of curbing one’s enthusiasm for the silver bullet; of realizing that one stands on the work of many generations who have gone before, who may have known more than you, and to whom you owe a debt that should be paid; of attempting to live up to the best hopes of your ancestors; of applying thoughtful experiments to real problems, not magical hopes. Conservatism is what you get when you are to at least some extent more worldly than a child and don’t believe in any of the isms or ologies. No royal road, just the old hard slog. Plod on through the fog, because there it is.

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    • Replies: @Laugh Track

    I don’t think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice. Convervatism is the practice of conserving what works; of not thowing out the baby with the bathwater in racing to embrace new ideas; of curbing one’s enthusiasm for the silver bullet; of realizing that one stands on the work of many generations who have gone before, who may have known more than you, and to whom you owe a debt that should be paid; of attempting to live up to the best hopes of your ancestors; of applying thoughtful experiments to real problems, not magical hopes. Conservatism is what you get when you are to at least some extent more worldly than a child and don’t believe in any of the isms or ologies. No royal road, just the old hard slog. Plod on through the fog, because there it is.
     
    Spot on. You state it well.
    , @Matthew Kelly
    Well said, anon.
    , @Dr. X

    I don’t think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice.
     
    That's Aristotle's view. He believed that the object of philosophy was phronesis, or "practical wisdom." He argued that the role of the statesman was to achieve the best practical regime, not strive for the ideally perfect regime.
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  30. For Mr. Hayward, the Straussians—not just Jaffa and Berns but a cluster of scholars and public intellectuals—redefined American conservatism. He argues that, thanks to their work, the preoccupations of midcentury conservatism gave way to an outlook that newly valued the country’s first principles.

    I only partially agree with this.

    True, Straussians took American first principles seriously. But neocons distorted this in the following way:

    Strauss did not think that liberal democracy was the ideal political regime (and he certainly understood, as the ancient Greeks did, that all men are not equal). But, as a refugee from Nazi Germany, which was locked in mortal combat with Soviet communism, he recognized that the totalitarian alternatives of the 20th century were far worse. Thus, as Plato argued in Book 8 of the Republic, democracy was flawed but salutary insofar it at least allowed the philosopher to seek truth.

    Now, although Strauss himself never advocated American liberal democratic imperialism, neocons took his criticism of 20th century totalitarianism and turned it into a missionary crusade (which has largely failed, IMHO).

    If one takes the principles of the American founding seriously, it becomes quite evident that the Founders preferred neutrality and nonintervention in foreign affairs, were terrified of a standing army, advocated a small government of enumerated powers, and were distrustful of human nature, believing it to be flawed and imperfect and liable to corruption. (The Founders’ distrust of human nature coincides neatly with Strauss’s understanding of the dangers of Machiavellianism.)

    Thus, the proper understanding of the Founding is precisely the opposite of what we have today — a global military in 100 countries, undeclared wars, rogue law enforcement an intelligence agencies, and $20 trillion in debt. Much of this is the work of the neocons.

    I do not want to put words in Strauss’s mouth, but I suspect that, were he alive today, he would recognize just how far the U.S. has deviated from its Founding principles, and would take issue with the neocons who justify American liberal democratic imperialism in his name.

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    • Replies: @Bitfu
    Thank you for your today--they were excellent.
    , @Flavius
    Excellent comment; all true and so sad.
    In trying to gain the world, we have succeeded only in hollowing ourselves at the core. The only real questions are whether the totalitarian dystopia we've been slouching towards will tolerate remnant communities, where they will be, and what they will look like.
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  31. @syonredux

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding,
     
    And it was abolished during the Founding: Vermont (1777), Pennsylvania (1780), and Massachusetts (1781-83).

    and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.
     
    People weren't trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th....

    And secession was how the USA was founded.
     
    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860...

    People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th….

    Nothing remarkable about that. Slavery in essence was irrelevant; merely an issue for Northerners to posture moral superiority over the South and crush their opposition. The issue was power- always was and always will be.

    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…

    Well yes, if you ignore the attempts by Northerners to kill Southerners and incite slave revolutions then there was absolutely no grounds. I personally like John Quincy Adams “Though it cost the blood of millions of white men, let it come. Let justice be done.” Lets tell Southerners that after Haiti, when the blacks exterminated all the whites on the island. I’m sure that will go over well.

    The Southern position was pretty simple. If the North had the power to abolish slavery, they would have- and use- the power to get the South to do any crazy thing Northerners desired. History has born out Southern fears.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Nothing remarkable about that. Slavery in essence was irrelevant; merely an issue for Northerners to posture moral superiority over the South and crush their opposition. The issue was power- always was and always will be.
     
    Sending bounty hunters into the free states, whether it was constitutional and legal or not, made a mockery of those states' sovereignty. Were they sent into Upper Canada as well?

    Why is it any outsider's business who a state considers a citizen?

    Lets tell Southerners that after Haiti, when the blacks exterminated all the whites on the island. I’m sure that will go over well.
     
    There should never have been any blacks on that island. If they had belonged there, they would have gotten there by their own means. The Creator knew what He was doing. The white man didn't.

    The deaths of the planters, whether in Haiti or Virginia, are analogous to later deaths from lung cancer and AIDS. Largely self-inflicted.
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  32. @Curle
    Jaffa was wrong. The Declaration was a press release justifying secession, nothing more. And the ‘all men are created equal’ stuff seems a pretty straightforward shot aimed at the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs and given its context unlikely to be declaring all men materially equal much less all peoples.

    Edgar Lee Masters understood Lincoln better. Lincoln’s great insight was realizing that creating moral panics is a good way to litigate the meaning of things, things like constitutions.

    The Declaration was a press release justifying secession,

    It was written to justify revolution.

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    • Replies: @guest
    "It was written to justify revolution"

    Justify, not exactly. Persuade, yes. The document is political rhetoric meant to convince people the cause of separation was just.

    Revolutionary, hardly. Only some small part would view it that way. The idea was to take the existing political structures, founded under the empire, and give them independence, with the traditional rights of Englishmen respected. Not to remake the social order, or anything.

    If you want to call it revolution according to your own conception of that term, okay. Not so much in the Current Year connotations of "revolution."

    "Secession" is an appropriate term for it.
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  33. @Opinionator
    Could someone define "Straussianism"? I'm still unsure what this guy's contribution was.

    Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was.

    Sure.

    Strauss advocated a close analysis and reappraisal of the texts of what he called “ancient” philosophy (e.g., Plato, Aristotle etc.) because the questions and problems presented in those texts (Equality vs. inequality, What is justice?, What is the ideal regime? What is the proper exercise of political power?) were perennial, fixed in human nature, and thus relevant today.

    He was particularly critical of 20th century totalitarianisms, such as Nazism and communism, which believed that history constituted “progress” toward some kind of “new man” and thus believed that they had all the answers and that philosophy was unnecessary. Strauss’s emphasis on the study ancient and classical texts appeared to be “conservative” in contrast not only with historicist doctrines such as communism, but in contrast with liberal democratic “progressivism” as well.

    Strauss also understood that throughout human history, to ask questions about justice and the proper use of political power was necessarily risky — if not fatal, as the case of Socrates demonstrated. Therefore, in order to get his message out to the relatively few who could understand it and not run afoul of the authorities, Strauss recognized that political philosophers often spoke in esoteric rather than exoteric terms, and that a proper study of ancient texts necessitated an understanding of this problem and a close critical study of the text and of the political context for which they were written.

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    • Replies: @newrouter
    " Therefore, in order to get his message out to the relatively few who could understand it and not run afoul of the authorities, Strauss recognized that political philosophers often spoke in esoteric rather than exoteric terms"

    a bull shit artist?

    , @newrouter
    speaken de truth to power hahahaa. clowns the lot of you.
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  34. @Curle
    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.

    …Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.

    Not to mention his insane belief that a bunch of overheated states with five million Africans had any place in a federation of white republics.

    Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close– way too close– to the even more effeminate Alabamian King, who more than anyone put the “vice” in the Vice Presidency. Fillmore, the last Whig, should have done the job.

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    • Replies: @Alden
    Letting the slave states go in the 1850s with the blacks would have been a great thing, especially if a well guarded wall had been built to keep the blacks out of the north and west.
    , @Anon
    "Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close– way too close– to the even more effeminate Alabamian King"

    Is there a reason Lincoln didn't? In fact, they didn't vote for him but left on account of his election. Kinda destroys your thesis that Buchanan could have done anything, doesn't it? People like you got what you wanted with Lincoln but still cooked up a war anyway.

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  35. @syonredux
    It really had more to do with the fact that the colonists were not represented in Parliament.

    I think it had more to do with the fact that the Colonists believed they were strong enough to avoid sharing returns on their investments with the Crown. Representation would have been a second best outcome.

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  36. What’s the expected number of rapes committed lifetime by a typical NFL team’s 53-man roster?
    –Steve on Twitter

    https://twitter.com/Steve_Sailer/status/947215459782246400

    And how does it correlate with winning percentage?

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  37. @Svigor

    He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.
     
    Is there a right more natural than that of a population group in the process of speciation to continue on its way? Of course no "serious" philosopher acknowledges it. I'd say they (Straussians, neocons, etc., very much included) overwhelmingly oppose that natural right (for Whites anyway).

    The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …
     
    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water...

    "Secession for America from Britain but not for the South from the Union" doesn't strike me as equality. More like the opposite.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America's founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding, and I don't recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it. And secession was how the USA was founded.

    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most. The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.
     
    Another motivation given for it is as a propaganda blow to embarrass the British, who were sympathetic to the Confederacy, for geopolitical reasons as much as any other. There were probably more abolitionists in London than in the entire Western Hemisphere (and they were on a winning streak), so threatening to rile them up would make a Parliamentarian pause.

    A UK-CSA alliance would have been most ironic, since those fugitive slaves were headed to the British Empire, where they were safer from confiscation than anywhere in the US.

    Were there attempts, physical or litigious, to retrieve those slaves from Canada or elsewhere?
    , @syonredux

    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most.
     
    Much less than that. As I pointed out to Svigor:

    Let’s see, the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863, and the 13 Amendment was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, by the House on January 31, 1865, and the required number of states on December 6, 1865….Given the cumbersome nature of the amendment process, that’s not much of a gap…..
     
    Elapsed time:January 1, 1863 to December 6, 1865
    , @guest
    One case where expediency and "legal justification" are one and the same.

    You could use the same reason to justify abducting Southern women as contraband. To do what with them I leave to your imagination.
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  38. I get Walter Berns mixed up with Walter Kirn. Whose former mother-in-law, Margot Kidder, I get mixed up with Margaret Trudeau, who’s five weeks older.

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  39. @Svigor

    He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.
     
    Is there a right more natural than that of a population group in the process of speciation to continue on its way? Of course no "serious" philosopher acknowledges it. I'd say they (Straussians, neocons, etc., very much included) overwhelmingly oppose that natural right (for Whites anyway).

    The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …
     
    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water...

    "Secession for America from Britain but not for the South from the Union" doesn't strike me as equality. More like the opposite.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America's founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding, and I don't recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it. And secession was how the USA was founded.

    Slavery was there at the founding, and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.

    “Slavery”, i.e., the presence of Africans on our soil, is by definition war on their fellow white Americans.

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  40. @Hibernian
    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most. The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.

    The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.

    Another motivation given for it is as a propaganda blow to embarrass the British, who were sympathetic to the Confederacy, for geopolitical reasons as much as any other. There were probably more abolitionists in London than in the entire Western Hemisphere (and they were on a winning streak), so threatening to rile them up would make a Parliamentarian pause.

    A UK-CSA alliance would have been most ironic, since those fugitive slaves were headed to the British Empire, where they were safer from confiscation than anywhere in the US.

    Were there attempts, physical or litigious, to retrieve those slaves from Canada or elsewhere?

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  41. @Reg Cæsar

    ...Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.
     
    Not to mention his insane belief that a bunch of overheated states with five million Africans had any place in a federation of white republics.

    Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close-- way too close-- to the even more effeminate Alabamian King, who more than anyone put the "vice" in the Vice Presidency. Fillmore, the last Whig, should have done the job.

    Letting the slave states go in the 1850s with the blacks would have been a great thing, especially if a well guarded wall had been built to keep the blacks out of the north and west.

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    • Replies: @syonredux
    "Letting the slave states go in the 1850s with the blacks would have been a great thing, especially if a well guarded wall had been built to keep the blacks out of the north and west."


    Alternatively, what if the South decided to end the problem posed by having Blacks in mainland Anglo-America? Poking around the internet, I've found an estimate for what the Civil War cost the Confederacy: $2,099,808,707. Now, just imagine what things would have been like if the South had decided to pool its resources and repatriate the slaves back to Africa.....No secession....No Civil War....and virtually no Blacks in the USA.... $2,099,808,707 would have been a bargain....

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  42. @Hibernian
    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most. The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.

    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most.

    Much less than that. As I pointed out to Svigor:

    Let’s see, the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863, and the 13 Amendment was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, by the House on January 31, 1865, and the required number of states on December 6, 1865….Given the cumbersome nature of the amendment process, that’s not much of a gap…..

    Elapsed time:January 1, 1863 to December 6, 1865

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  43. @syonredux

    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water…
     
    Let's see, the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863, and the 13 Amendment was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, by the House on January 31, 1865, and the required number of states on December 6, 1865....Given the cumbersome nature of the amendment process, that's not much of a gap.....

    Abolition of slavery is a pretty thin reed for Moralists to cling to. Granted, no man wishes to be a slave. But most men weren’t slaves. And slaves were drawn from a highly restricted population. In the current year, if given the proposition of almost certainly giving up something of high value, say liberty or life, in order to free someone from slavery who is very unlikely to be anyone you know, or would ever seek to know, what would the opinion polls say?

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    There is still slavery happening in parts of Africa (and I don’t mean metaphorically)

    Not many speak of it or care much about it. They don’t care about slavery in the past either, unless it’s a subject that can be used as a tool in the present.

    There is so much misery, bloodshed, injustice in the history of man that this narrow fixation on slavery of blacks/by whites is transparently a sick scam. This scam will end the minute whites collectively say ‘enough’.
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  44. OT: Be interested to see an iSteve review of Brawl in Cell Block 99, the new Vince Vaughn movie. It was written and directed by S. Craig Zahler, the same guy who made Bone Tomahawk. Based on both these films, it’s safe to say Zahler’s no lefty. Here’s a sample review by a chick who can’t quite come to terms with that fact.

    http://screencrush.com/brawl-in-cell-block-99-review/

    Though it should be noted most critics seem to be fairly positive.

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    • Replies: @Twodees Partain
    I suffered through that little piece of dreck and came out wondering how anyone could give the movie a serious review. It's probably the worst movie made so far in this century.
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  45. @Alden
    Letting the slave states go in the 1850s with the blacks would have been a great thing, especially if a well guarded wall had been built to keep the blacks out of the north and west.

    “Letting the slave states go in the 1850s with the blacks would have been a great thing, especially if a well guarded wall had been built to keep the blacks out of the north and west.”

    Alternatively, what if the South decided to end the problem posed by having Blacks in mainland Anglo-America? Poking around the internet, I’ve found an estimate for what the Civil War cost the Confederacy: $2,099,808,707. Now, just imagine what things would have been like if the South had decided to pool its resources and repatriate the slaves back to Africa…..No secession….No Civil War….and virtually no Blacks in the USA…. $2,099,808,707 would have been a bargain….

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    • Agree: MEH 0910
    • Replies: @Anon
    "Now, just imagine what things would have been like if the South had decided to pool its resources and repatriate"

    Imagine if everyone sold their homes and donated the money to cancer research. Imagine the savings fifty years from now.

    How realistic is that?

    Imagine this: the people who railed (hypocritically, I mean they kinda were stealing lots of Indian lands and doing terrible things to those people at the same time as fighting a civil war) at slavery spent their money to buy them instead of launching a devastating war with consequences still felt today.
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  46. @syonredux

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding,
     
    And it was abolished during the Founding: Vermont (1777), Pennsylvania (1780), and Massachusetts (1781-83).

    and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.
     
    People weren't trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th....

    And secession was how the USA was founded.
     
    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860...

    Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th….

    You can blame my cousin, Eli Whitney, for that. He’s the one who made it pay.

    But the planters who cheated him out of his royalties bit their own descendants in the haunches. Because he turned from gins to guns.

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  47. @Samuel Skinner

    People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th….
     
    Nothing remarkable about that. Slavery in essence was irrelevant; merely an issue for Northerners to posture moral superiority over the South and crush their opposition. The issue was power- always was and always will be.

    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…
     
    Well yes, if you ignore the attempts by Northerners to kill Southerners and incite slave revolutions then there was absolutely no grounds. I personally like John Quincy Adams “Though it cost the blood of millions of white men, let it come. Let justice be done.” Lets tell Southerners that after Haiti, when the blacks exterminated all the whites on the island. I'm sure that will go over well.

    The Southern position was pretty simple. If the North had the power to abolish slavery, they would have- and use- the power to get the South to do any crazy thing Northerners desired. History has born out Southern fears.

    Nothing remarkable about that. Slavery in essence was irrelevant; merely an issue for Northerners to posture moral superiority over the South and crush their opposition. The issue was power- always was and always will be.

    Sending bounty hunters into the free states, whether it was constitutional and legal or not, made a mockery of those states’ sovereignty. Were they sent into Upper Canada as well?

    Why is it any outsider’s business who a state considers a citizen?

    Lets tell Southerners that after Haiti, when the blacks exterminated all the whites on the island. I’m sure that will go over well.

    There should never have been any blacks on that island. If they had belonged there, they would have gotten there by their own means. The Creator knew what He was doing. The white man didn’t.

    The deaths of the planters, whether in Haiti or Virginia, are analogous to later deaths from lung cancer and AIDS. Largely self-inflicted.

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    • Replies: @Samuel Skinner

    Sending bounty hunters into the free states, whether it was constitutional and legal or not, made a mockery of those states’ sovereignty.
     
    Bounty hunters still exist and still can arrest people in states for crimes that aren't illegal in the locale they are being arrested (for example the age of consent varies throughout the country).

    Were they sent into Upper Canada as well?
     
    Unlike the North, Canada was not part of the United States.

    There should never have been any blacks on that island. If they had belonged there, they would have gotten there by their own means. The Creator knew what He was doing. The white man didn’t.

    The deaths of the planters, whether in Haiti or Virginia, are analogous to later deaths from lung cancer and AIDS. Largely self-inflicted.
     
    It was murder, not suicide. The Haitian elite could have maintained power, but the French Revolutionary assembly decided to backstab them.

    An elite can rule over nearly any number of subjects. Once the unity of the elite is broken and they fight for power, dismantling the system of control and rule, the jackals come and things fall apart.
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  48. People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was [irrelevant stuff snipped]

    “She doesn’t get to divorce me to go live with that guy, it’s an illegitimate reason” doesn’t really work. Doesn’t matter why the South wanted to secede. The right to secession isn’t the right to secede as long as Syon and the Yankees approve. George didn’t approve of American secession.

    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…

    Semantics. And nah, the South had every right to secede.

    “Slavery”, i.e., the presence of Africans on our soil, is by definition war on their fellow white Americans.

    That thing you do where you substitute non-literal war for war as if it literally war, with an invading army and guns and mass death and destruction et cetera, isn’t half as clever as you seem to think it is. I suppose 600k dead Americans wouldn’t find it cute, either.

    Who was it who killed any chance of repatriation? Oh yeah; Yankees. Yes, yes, we know, if only some rebel hadn’t shot Saint Lincoln. Saint Lincoln could’ve gotten the commie-voting Yankee political class to repatriate, yeah, that’s the ticket, yeah…

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    • Replies: @dearieme
    "People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s": maybe not in the name of, but apparently some were impelled by fear of the rise of abolitionism in Britain. The abolitionists had already achieved decisions from both English and Scottish courts that were interpreted as meaning that slavery could not exist within those countries. So if anyone brought a slave to Britain from the Americas that slave became a free man.

    Or if Mr Jefferson had been involved, she'd have become a free woman.

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  49. @Curle
    Jaffa was wrong. The Declaration was a press release justifying secession, nothing more. And the ‘all men are created equal’ stuff seems a pretty straightforward shot aimed at the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs and given its context unlikely to be declaring all men materially equal much less all peoples.

    Edgar Lee Masters understood Lincoln better. Lincoln’s great insight was realizing that creating moral panics is a good way to litigate the meaning of things, things like constitutions.

    Lincoln was a politician, and so was Jefferson. They weren’t philosophers, and people who take them to be talking about Eternal Verities make themselves ridiculous.

    (Master’s book Lincoln, the Man is a page-turner. I’d warn he has axes to grind, but it’s good to hear other sides. Especially considering Official Lincoln is made of cardboard.)

    Jaffa needed to learn a thing or two about to that little discipline we call rhetoric.

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  50. Harry Jaffa a “giant of American intellectualism?” In what world?

    I suppose a world in which people use the phrase “American intellectualism.” Which isn’t my world.

    I have followed the conservative intellectual movement for a long while. Though I’ve heard of Jaffa, and actually read a smidgen, he’s way, way down the list. In the basement, like. Of the three or four times I’ve heard mention of him, they were all excoriations.

    Of course, I have spent most of my time in the last several years in the Dissident Right. There, they don’t think highly of his type. In mainstream circles they may respect him. Then again, they respect clowns like George Will, so what do they know?

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    guest wrote:

    I have followed the conservative intellectual movement for a long while. Though I’ve heard of Jaffa, and actually read a smidgen, he’s way, way down the list. In the basement, like.
     
    I've been following the conservative movement for over fifty years: my recollection is that the Straussians started getting some attention about the same time as the neocon takeover. I think the (ex-)Trots played a greater role than the Straussians in the neocon conquest of the Right, however.

    Of course, Frank Meyer, one of the leading figures in the conservative movement in the '50s, thought that the whole modern conservative movement (i.e., post 1950) was largely a CIA operation, and he was in a position to know.
    , @boomstick
    Jaffa was a speech writer in the '64 Goldwater campaign, including penning the famous "Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice" line.

    I'd guess the pair are more likely to have taught a few people who later taught people who taught some legal profs.
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  51. @anonymous
    I don't think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice. Convervatism is the practice of conserving what works; of not thowing out the baby with the bathwater in racing to embrace new ideas; of curbing one's enthusiasm for the silver bullet; of realizing that one stands on the work of many generations who have gone before, who may have known more than you, and to whom you owe a debt that should be paid; of attempting to live up to the best hopes of your ancestors; of applying thoughtful experiments to real problems, not magical hopes. Conservatism is what you get when you are to at least some extent more worldly than a child and don't believe in any of the isms or ologies. No royal road, just the old hard slog. Plod on through the fog, because there it is.

    I don’t think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice. Convervatism is the practice of conserving what works; of not thowing out the baby with the bathwater in racing to embrace new ideas; of curbing one’s enthusiasm for the silver bullet; of realizing that one stands on the work of many generations who have gone before, who may have known more than you, and to whom you owe a debt that should be paid; of attempting to live up to the best hopes of your ancestors; of applying thoughtful experiments to real problems, not magical hopes. Conservatism is what you get when you are to at least some extent more worldly than a child and don’t believe in any of the isms or ologies. No royal road, just the old hard slog. Plod on through the fog, because there it is.

    Spot on. You state it well.

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    • Agree: Desiderius
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  52. @Art Deco
    Edgar Lee Masters

    The guy that wrote Spoon River Anthology? No thanks.

    Spoon River is not great as poetry, but it has good narrative and for lack of a better term social commentary. A bit too much of the Eminent Victorian style of gossip about the dirty underbelly of small town America. Moderns can be so callow, as if no one ever figured out people were naughty before. But it’s a good corrective to wallow in naughtiness once in a while, so long as it’s not prurient.

    Most importantly, the interweaving stories are captivating.

    I can’t comment on the scholarship demonstrated in Lincoln, the Man, but it’s polemics are captivating and it is a good read. And it’s good to see a famous poet succeeding in another literary genre. Our poets are useless these days. I like to remember they could be men of letters, too, at one point.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Spoon River is a collection of caricatures, and of almost no value for form or content, except as an indicator of currents of thought at the time it was first published.
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  53. @syonredux

    The Declaration was a press release justifying secession,
     
    It was written to justify revolution.

    “It was written to justify revolution”

    Justify, not exactly. Persuade, yes. The document is political rhetoric meant to convince people the cause of separation was just.

    Revolutionary, hardly. Only some small part would view it that way. The idea was to take the existing political structures, founded under the empire, and give them independence, with the traditional rights of Englishmen respected. Not to remake the social order, or anything.

    If you want to call it revolution according to your own conception of that term, okay. Not so much in the Current Year connotations of “revolution.”

    “Secession” is an appropriate term for it.

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    • Replies: @ben tillman

    “It was written to justify revolution”

    Justify, not exactly. Persuade, yes. The document is political rhetoric meant to convince people the cause of separation was just.
     
    See the bolded. There is a connection.
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  54. @Hibernian
    The elapsed time between the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment was five years at most. The legal justification for the E.P. was that Southern slaves were contraband of war.

    One case where expediency and “legal justification” are one and the same.

    You could use the same reason to justify abducting Southern women as contraband. To do what with them I leave to your imagination.

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  55. @27 year old

    Walter Berns and Harry Jaffa, giants of American intellectualism,
     
    Who could forget those two?

    Didn’t Harry Jaffa play Dr. Zorba on Ben Casey?

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  56. @syonredux

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding,
     
    And it was abolished during the Founding: Vermont (1777), Pennsylvania (1780), and Massachusetts (1781-83).

    and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.
     
    People weren't trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th....

    And secession was how the USA was founded.
     
    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860...

    “People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s.”

    You’ve got the order of causation backwards, there was no question in the early years that states could secede for any reason at all; no ‘reason’ was require, it was a voluntary compact of sovereign states. Slavery was irrelevant.

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  57. I wonder if people who say things like the following have actually read anything by Leo Strauss:

    He [Strauss] believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.

    My own recollection is that Strauss made a careful distinction between “natural right” (doing what is actually right in accordance with nature) and “natural rights” (claims we rightly make on other people, especially governments, to leave us alone).

    Strauss was in favor of “natural right,” but not so sure about “natural rights.”

    It is revealing that one of his books was titled Natural Right and History, not Natural Rights and History: Strauss made clear that the singular was meaningful and intentional.

    (N.B. I am not a Straussian, but I do think it would be nice to actually correctly represent his views.)

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  58. @guest
    Harry Jaffa a "giant of American intellectualism?" In what world?

    I suppose a world in which people use the phrase "American intellectualism." Which isn't my world.

    I have followed the conservative intellectual movement for a long while. Though I've heard of Jaffa, and actually read a smidgen, he's way, way down the list. In the basement, like. Of the three or four times I've heard mention of him, they were all excoriations.

    Of course, I have spent most of my time in the last several years in the Dissident Right. There, they don't think highly of his type. In mainstream circles they may respect him. Then again, they respect clowns like George Will, so what do they know?

    guest wrote:

    I have followed the conservative intellectual movement for a long while. Though I’ve heard of Jaffa, and actually read a smidgen, he’s way, way down the list. In the basement, like.

    I’ve been following the conservative movement for over fifty years: my recollection is that the Straussians started getting some attention about the same time as the neocon takeover. I think the (ex-)Trots played a greater role than the Straussians in the neocon conquest of the Right, however.

    Of course, Frank Meyer, one of the leading figures in the conservative movement in the ’50s, thought that the whole modern conservative movement (i.e., post 1950) was largely a CIA operation, and he was in a position to know.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Of course, Frank Meyer, one of the leading figures in the conservative movement in the ’50s, thought that the whole modern conservative movement (i.e., post 1950) was largely a CIA operation, and he was in a position to know.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/18/%22Citation_needed%22.jpg
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  59. @Opinionator
    Could someone define "Straussianism"? I'm still unsure what this guy's contribution was.

    Straussianism is the doctrine of the followers of Leo Strauss (1899-1973). Since Strauss deliberately wrote obscurely, supposedly to avoid dogmatism, his followers fall into competing sects of dogmatists.

    The only thing they all seem to agree on is that deliberately writing obscurely is a good thing, and that the greatest philosophers, especially Plato, deliberately wrote obscurely.

    Their evidence for this is that they found parts of Plato’s Republic uncongenial.

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  60. @Dr. X

    For Mr. Hayward, the Straussians—not just Jaffa and Berns but a cluster of scholars and public intellectuals—redefined American conservatism. He argues that, thanks to their work, the preoccupations of midcentury conservatism gave way to an outlook that newly valued the country’s first principles.
     
    I only partially agree with this.

    True, Straussians took American first principles seriously. But neocons distorted this in the following way:

    Strauss did not think that liberal democracy was the ideal political regime (and he certainly understood, as the ancient Greeks did, that all men are not equal). But, as a refugee from Nazi Germany, which was locked in mortal combat with Soviet communism, he recognized that the totalitarian alternatives of the 20th century were far worse. Thus, as Plato argued in Book 8 of the Republic, democracy was flawed but salutary insofar it at least allowed the philosopher to seek truth.

    Now, although Strauss himself never advocated American liberal democratic imperialism, neocons took his criticism of 20th century totalitarianism and turned it into a missionary crusade (which has largely failed, IMHO).

    If one takes the principles of the American founding seriously, it becomes quite evident that the Founders preferred neutrality and nonintervention in foreign affairs, were terrified of a standing army, advocated a small government of enumerated powers, and were distrustful of human nature, believing it to be flawed and imperfect and liable to corruption. (The Founders' distrust of human nature coincides neatly with Strauss's understanding of the dangers of Machiavellianism.)

    Thus, the proper understanding of the Founding is precisely the opposite of what we have today -- a global military in 100 countries, undeclared wars, rogue law enforcement an intelligence agencies, and $20 trillion in debt. Much of this is the work of the neocons.

    I do not want to put words in Strauss's mouth, but I suspect that, were he alive today, he would recognize just how far the U.S. has deviated from its Founding principles, and would take issue with the neocons who justify American liberal democratic imperialism in his name.

    Thank you for your today–they were excellent.

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  61. @Curle
    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.

    And Lincoln The Man. And who, more importantly provided the most coherent and plausable explanation of Lincoln,

    The number of Lincoln biographies is, if I’m not mistaken, expressed in four digits. Not buying the idea that anyone bar a scatter of academic specialists is comprehensively familiar with the oeuvre.

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  62. @guest
    Spoon River is not great as poetry, but it has good narrative and for lack of a better term social commentary. A bit too much of the Eminent Victorian style of gossip about the dirty underbelly of small town America. Moderns can be so callow, as if no one ever figured out people were naughty before. But it's a good corrective to wallow in naughtiness once in a while, so long as it's not prurient.

    Most importantly, the interweaving stories are captivating.

    I can't comment on the scholarship demonstrated in Lincoln, the Man, but it's polemics are captivating and it is a good read. And it's good to see a famous poet succeeding in another literary genre. Our poets are useless these days. I like to remember they could be men of letters, too, at one point.

    Spoon River is a collection of caricatures, and of almost no value for form or content, except as an indicator of currents of thought at the time it was first published.

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  63. @dearieme
    "the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs": a notion that was a century out of date when the D of I was written. War and revolution the 17th century established that the king's right to the throne was in the hands of Parliament, both in England and in Scotland.

    Either Jefferson and his cronies didn't understand this, or they routinely lied about it. My money's on the latter.

    Oh, I think Jefferson and company knew well the theoretical limits on the king’s powers, but they really believed that they were witnessing things that “evinces a design to reduce them to Absolute Despotism . . .”.

    I think Jefferson had a point. He did, after all, cite 27 specific examples in the middle portion, the indictment.

    Anyway, he understood the value of identifying one particular villian (“He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts” etc.) rather than a general body, such as Parliament.

    Jefferson was writing for a mass audience, and I agree that it is easier to get get people fired up when the accusatory finger is pointed at one person (“He did it”) rather than a group.

    Isn’t it as simple as that?

    (Or, did Disney get it right back in 1953, beginning at the 8:00 minute mark?)

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  64. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Rod1963
    The UK is finished. It's white intellectuals and elites have went totally insane and totalitarian.

    Though we in the U.S. and in particular CA isn't far behind.

    http://reason.com/volokh/2017/12/29/calif-prosecuting-man-for-insulting-post

    At best we're maybe 4-5 years behind you folks in the UK. All Trump did was buy us a bit of time, still he can't stop the states from declaring war on whites

    I got permanently banned from ABC News for a similar observation, and it was comparatively mild. I merely pointed out that some popular stories may be hoaxes.

    Since I was banned instantly I concluded that the word “hoax” may not be spoken in polite society, since of course hoaxes never happen and you must be racist and sexist for believing otherwise.

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  65. @Reg Cæsar

    Nothing remarkable about that. Slavery in essence was irrelevant; merely an issue for Northerners to posture moral superiority over the South and crush their opposition. The issue was power- always was and always will be.
     
    Sending bounty hunters into the free states, whether it was constitutional and legal or not, made a mockery of those states' sovereignty. Were they sent into Upper Canada as well?

    Why is it any outsider's business who a state considers a citizen?

    Lets tell Southerners that after Haiti, when the blacks exterminated all the whites on the island. I’m sure that will go over well.
     
    There should never have been any blacks on that island. If they had belonged there, they would have gotten there by their own means. The Creator knew what He was doing. The white man didn't.

    The deaths of the planters, whether in Haiti or Virginia, are analogous to later deaths from lung cancer and AIDS. Largely self-inflicted.

    Sending bounty hunters into the free states, whether it was constitutional and legal or not, made a mockery of those states’ sovereignty.

    Bounty hunters still exist and still can arrest people in states for crimes that aren’t illegal in the locale they are being arrested (for example the age of consent varies throughout the country).

    Were they sent into Upper Canada as well?

    Unlike the North, Canada was not part of the United States.

    There should never have been any blacks on that island. If they had belonged there, they would have gotten there by their own means. The Creator knew what He was doing. The white man didn’t.

    The deaths of the planters, whether in Haiti or Virginia, are analogous to later deaths from lung cancer and AIDS. Largely self-inflicted.

    It was murder, not suicide. The Haitian elite could have maintained power, but the French Revolutionary assembly decided to backstab them.

    An elite can rule over nearly any number of subjects. Once the unity of the elite is broken and they fight for power, dismantling the system of control and rule, the jackals come and things fall apart.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Unlike the North, Canada was not part of the United States.

     

    I see. Sovereignty for me, not for thee.

    But pirated property is pirated property. So why didn't they go after it? If not with bounty hunters, then in the courts. They didn't want to tick off their potential allies in the British government? They'd be laughed out of London society?

    If the planters' claim was legitimate, it would have been legitimate on both sides of Lake Erie or the Bay of Fundy.


    It was murder, not suicide
     
    The suicidal part was having the Africans there in the first place. And our own civil war, between and within the states, was suicidal for both sides. Either's "victory" would have been Pyrrhic. Imagine Mississippi today with a million more blacks, and Chicago with a million fewer.
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  66. @22pp22
    Today, I commented on a Daily Mail article concerning the frequent jailing of men on false rape charges. I said that we are obsessed with ideology to the point where there is a de facto assumption of guilt except in the case of Rotherham where, due to the ethnicity of the perpetrators, genuine rape victims were ignored or even themselves subjected to persecution.

    I received the following reply:

    (The really creepy bit is where they threaten to contact my employer. RIP democracy in the UK.)

    User has been banned.
    M
    [email protected]


    Reply|
    Today, 11:47 a.m.
    You
    Getting too much email from [email protected]? You can unsubscribe
    Hello,

    Your account has been permanently de- activated for going against the Community Guidelines.

    You are no longer allowed to post on the Daily Mail or other Associated Newspapers Ltd sites using this or any other user. Please be advised that should you post again we reserve the right to contact your ISP/employer and seek that action is taken against you.

    Regards,
    Senior Community Editor
    Daily Mai

    The UK makes China look like a libertarian paradise….But I thought freedom of speech was guaranteed by Britain’s “unwritten” Constitution??? Suckers….

    The UK is dead, dead, dead.

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    • Replies: @22pp22
    It is better in the US?

    They are not threatening me with legal action.

    They are threatening me with unemployment. That is exactly how free speech is curtailed in the USA.
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  67. Wasn’t Strauss and infamous neoconservative? Didn’t Paul Wolfowitz study under him, too?

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Strauss was a pure academic philosopher who never published a word on social policy or foreign policy. No clue how he was tagged a 'neoconservative' in the 'minds' of the opinionated confused. Paul Wolfowitz took two courses from him ca. 1969.
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  68. @Dr. X

    For Mr. Hayward, the Straussians—not just Jaffa and Berns but a cluster of scholars and public intellectuals—redefined American conservatism. He argues that, thanks to their work, the preoccupations of midcentury conservatism gave way to an outlook that newly valued the country’s first principles.
     
    I only partially agree with this.

    True, Straussians took American first principles seriously. But neocons distorted this in the following way:

    Strauss did not think that liberal democracy was the ideal political regime (and he certainly understood, as the ancient Greeks did, that all men are not equal). But, as a refugee from Nazi Germany, which was locked in mortal combat with Soviet communism, he recognized that the totalitarian alternatives of the 20th century were far worse. Thus, as Plato argued in Book 8 of the Republic, democracy was flawed but salutary insofar it at least allowed the philosopher to seek truth.

    Now, although Strauss himself never advocated American liberal democratic imperialism, neocons took his criticism of 20th century totalitarianism and turned it into a missionary crusade (which has largely failed, IMHO).

    If one takes the principles of the American founding seriously, it becomes quite evident that the Founders preferred neutrality and nonintervention in foreign affairs, were terrified of a standing army, advocated a small government of enumerated powers, and were distrustful of human nature, believing it to be flawed and imperfect and liable to corruption. (The Founders' distrust of human nature coincides neatly with Strauss's understanding of the dangers of Machiavellianism.)

    Thus, the proper understanding of the Founding is precisely the opposite of what we have today -- a global military in 100 countries, undeclared wars, rogue law enforcement an intelligence agencies, and $20 trillion in debt. Much of this is the work of the neocons.

    I do not want to put words in Strauss's mouth, but I suspect that, were he alive today, he would recognize just how far the U.S. has deviated from its Founding principles, and would take issue with the neocons who justify American liberal democratic imperialism in his name.

    Excellent comment; all true and so sad.
    In trying to gain the world, we have succeeded only in hollowing ourselves at the core. The only real questions are whether the totalitarian dystopia we’ve been slouching towards will tolerate remnant communities, where they will be, and what they will look like.

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  69. Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @syonredux
    "Letting the slave states go in the 1850s with the blacks would have been a great thing, especially if a well guarded wall had been built to keep the blacks out of the north and west."


    Alternatively, what if the South decided to end the problem posed by having Blacks in mainland Anglo-America? Poking around the internet, I've found an estimate for what the Civil War cost the Confederacy: $2,099,808,707. Now, just imagine what things would have been like if the South had decided to pool its resources and repatriate the slaves back to Africa.....No secession....No Civil War....and virtually no Blacks in the USA.... $2,099,808,707 would have been a bargain....

    “Now, just imagine what things would have been like if the South had decided to pool its resources and repatriate”

    Imagine if everyone sold their homes and donated the money to cancer research. Imagine the savings fifty years from now.

    How realistic is that?

    Imagine this: the people who railed (hypocritically, I mean they kinda were stealing lots of Indian lands and doing terrible things to those people at the same time as fighting a civil war) at slavery spent their money to buy them instead of launching a devastating war with consequences still felt today.

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  70. @syonredux

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America’s founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding,
     
    And it was abolished during the Founding: Vermont (1777), Pennsylvania (1780), and Massachusetts (1781-83).

    and I don’t recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it.
     
    People weren't trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was how slave-owners in the South went from disliking/barely tolerating slavery as a necessary evil in the 18th century to extolling it as a positive good in the 19th....

    And secession was how the USA was founded.
     
    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860...

    “Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…”

    That was hardly a revolution. Aside from the King’s men being waved off in 1783, very little changed in Colonial government and society. It was merely secession.

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    • Replies: @Verymuchalive
    Shockerooni. 200+ years on and some of you colonists finally get it.
    Wonders will never cease.
    It is called the American War of Independence for a reason.
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  71. Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    ...Lincoln, his character, his times and his enormous role overturning key elements of the old constitutional order not to mention his true genius and calling as a polemicist, propagandist, moral panic instigator, opportunist and overall troublemaker.
     
    Not to mention his insane belief that a bunch of overheated states with five million Africans had any place in a federation of white republics.

    Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close-- way too close-- to the even more effeminate Alabamian King, who more than anyone put the "vice" in the Vice Presidency. Fillmore, the last Whig, should have done the job.

    “Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close– way too close– to the even more effeminate Alabamian King”

    Is there a reason Lincoln didn’t? In fact, they didn’t vote for him but left on account of his election. Kinda destroys your thesis that Buchanan could have done anything, doesn’t it? People like you got what you wanted with Lincoln but still cooked up a war anyway.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Is there a reason Lincoln didn’t? In fact, they didn’t vote for him but left on account of his election
     
    In other words, he hadn't done anything yet.
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  72. Anon • Disclaimer says:
    @syonredux
    It really had more to do with the fact that the colonists were not represented in Parliament.

    “It really had more to do with the fact that the colonists were not represented in Parliament.”

    Sure. Never mind that there was all this pristine land west of Ohio that George said the colonists couldn’t touch. People never fight for their own tribe and economic interest. People fought and suffered horrific injuries before modern medicine because the greedy British hoarded all the good votes for themselves.

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  73. @PhysicistDave
    guest wrote:

    I have followed the conservative intellectual movement for a long while. Though I’ve heard of Jaffa, and actually read a smidgen, he’s way, way down the list. In the basement, like.
     
    I've been following the conservative movement for over fifty years: my recollection is that the Straussians started getting some attention about the same time as the neocon takeover. I think the (ex-)Trots played a greater role than the Straussians in the neocon conquest of the Right, however.

    Of course, Frank Meyer, one of the leading figures in the conservative movement in the '50s, thought that the whole modern conservative movement (i.e., post 1950) was largely a CIA operation, and he was in a position to know.

    Of course, Frank Meyer, one of the leading figures in the conservative movement in the ’50s, thought that the whole modern conservative movement (i.e., post 1950) was largely a CIA operation, and he was in a position to know.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Art Deco wrote to me:

    Citation Needed
     
    Oh, come off it! That is like giving a citation for the fact that Hillary is not President (though, come to think of it, she seems to think she actually won).

    By the post-1950 modern conservative movement, I of course meant the pro-Cold-War "conservative" movement centered around William F. Buckley Jr and National Review. These were the guys behind the Goldwater movement, the early Reagan movement, etc.

    Bill Buckley himself bragged about the fact that he was with the Company. I saw him do so on TV, and he did so also in print. He was proud of having worked for Howard Hunt of Watergate fame.

    You really don't know that?????

    Okay, so let's assume you really are ingenuous in really knowing nothing about the political history of the last seventy years.

    Here is a link from NR itself where Buckley wheezes on about when he "was inducted into the CIA as a deep cover agent."

    And here is a discussion by Murray Rothbard, who was a member of Buckley's circle for a time in the 1950s, of Meyer's views.

    Note that neither I nor Rothbard claim to know for sure that "movement" conservatism was a CIA black op, merely that Frank Meyer, who was well-positioned to know about such things, thought it was.

    It does make sense, though. There were other people prominent in the NR circle who had ties to the CIA or its predecessor, the OSS. We know that the CIA was involved heavily in influencing intellectuals, the publishing industry, and various political movements (try googling the Congress for Cultural Freedom, Operation Mockingbird, Thomas Braden, Encounter magazine, etc.). The pre-Buckley Right tended in an "isolationist" direction (for example, Bob Taft, "Mr. Republican," was skeptical of many of Truman's moves that ignited the Cold War).

    The pre-Buckley Right was the major domestic threat to the Cold War agenda of the CIA. It does all fit together.

    Personally, I think it is very likely that Frank Meyer was right. But, I can't prove it: I merely noted that that was his opinion.

    (Though, if you think the CIA would just never, ever do anything like that at all, there is a bridge in Brooklyn that I would like to sell you.)

    Dave

    Full disclosure: In the '80s and '90s I myself did technical work for the US Intelligence Community. I am sure you will understand why I cannot go into details.
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  74. @anonymous
    I don't think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice. Convervatism is the practice of conserving what works; of not thowing out the baby with the bathwater in racing to embrace new ideas; of curbing one's enthusiasm for the silver bullet; of realizing that one stands on the work of many generations who have gone before, who may have known more than you, and to whom you owe a debt that should be paid; of attempting to live up to the best hopes of your ancestors; of applying thoughtful experiments to real problems, not magical hopes. Conservatism is what you get when you are to at least some extent more worldly than a child and don't believe in any of the isms or ologies. No royal road, just the old hard slog. Plod on through the fog, because there it is.

    Well said, anon.

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  75. Everytime I tried to get a Jaffa book it is out of print or checked out at the library. Since neocons can’t drool over him enough, especially his book on A. Lincoln, I assume he is full of crap, but it would be nice to actually get a chance to see his crap in print.

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    • Replies: @Twodees Partain
    Try the local thrift store. That's where lots of out-of-print-for-good-reason books can be found. My guess is that once you've tried to read one of his books, you'll wonder why you bothered.
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  76. @The Alarmist

    "Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…"
     
    That was hardly a revolution. Aside from the King's men being waved off in 1783, very little changed in Colonial government and society. It was merely secession.

    Shockerooni. 200+ years on and some of you colonists finally get it.
    Wonders will never cease.
    It is called the American War of Independence for a reason.

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  77. @Seamus Padraig
    Wasn't Strauss and infamous neoconservative? Didn't Paul Wolfowitz study under him, too?

    Strauss was a pure academic philosopher who never published a word on social policy or foreign policy. No clue how he was tagged a ‘neoconservative’ in the ‘minds’ of the opinionated confused. Paul Wolfowitz took two courses from him ca. 1969.

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  78. @pyrrhus
    The UK makes China look like a libertarian paradise....But I thought freedom of speech was guaranteed by Britain's "unwritten" Constitution??? Suckers....

    The UK is dead, dead, dead.

    It is better in the US?

    They are not threatening me with legal action.

    They are threatening me with unemployment. That is exactly how free speech is curtailed in the USA.

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  79. The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal.

    It was mostly George Mason’s Virginia’s Declaration of Rights that inspired (his friend) Jefferson’s second paragraph of the Declaration of Independence, but Jefferson distorted the “equality” concept for reasons that aren’t immediately apparent until one digs deeper. The Virginia document’s original draft said that all men were “born equally free and independent.”

    The final version (of that phrase) read,

    “That all men are by nature equally free and independent and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.”

    Either way, the concept of equality extends only to one’s liberty and self determination.

    Why did Jefferson turn Mason’s idea into, “all men are created equal”? Well, first of all, that actually isn’t Jefferson’s idea encapsulated…there are other words in that sentence. Those other words seem to give some context for his ideas about equality, especially when you consider their derivation (from Mason.) Jefferson never intended to make equality as a distinct and separate idea from “Certain inalienable rights” as people today want to make it. In other words, he wanted to say people are equal with regards to certain rights, but, writing as he did, Jefferson created a conundrum. The only way that all men could be “created equal” to each other would be if all men were created interchangeable and essentially indistinguishable from each other, at least in the eyes many low-context progressives. Besides, only the Creator can speak with authority on how people are created, whether with regards to equality or anything else.

    Some historians say that Jefferson’s language in this phrase was a function of him trying to live up to his reputation as an awe inspiring writer (despite being a poor public speaker.) I personally believe, however, that he was mostly trying to avoid addressing the slavery issue. Could you imagine the southern colonies’ reaction if the Declaration of Independence said that “all men are born equally free and independent?” Would the Declaration ever have been ratified with that wording?

    By using, “created equal”, Jefferson didn’t have to include the words “free” and “independent”, words that fellow slave owners and southerners would’ve had a serious problem with…and northern anti-slavery Puritans (or their descendants) would’ve pursued with great vigor. That’s the great irony: the words “all men are created equal” were probably selected to maintain the institution of slavery, to one degree or another, not end it, as progressives of today want to believe. The second great irony is that Jefferson’s phrasing to skirt around the slavery issue would ultimately delude blacks into believing that they (as a population) were just as capable of running the world as anyone else. Or achieving. Or inventing. And when those things don’t happen, it must be injustice rather than inequality of ability.

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  80. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The last true American conservative–N.B.: small “c”– reposes within Russell Kirk’s tomb. Bill Kristol etal need not apply.

    And speaking of Kirk, it is often forgotten that towards the end of his life he wound up parting company with WF Buckley and the folks at National Review. In Kirk’s view Buckley and his magazine had debased the conservatism of Edmund Burke, Kirk’s philosophical mentor. Given what currently passes for “conservatism”emanating from NR, he was indeed prophetic.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    "The last American conservative" lived in a small town in Michigan writing short fiction and striking occasional poses.
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  81. @anonymous
    I don't think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice. Convervatism is the practice of conserving what works; of not thowing out the baby with the bathwater in racing to embrace new ideas; of curbing one's enthusiasm for the silver bullet; of realizing that one stands on the work of many generations who have gone before, who may have known more than you, and to whom you owe a debt that should be paid; of attempting to live up to the best hopes of your ancestors; of applying thoughtful experiments to real problems, not magical hopes. Conservatism is what you get when you are to at least some extent more worldly than a child and don't believe in any of the isms or ologies. No royal road, just the old hard slog. Plod on through the fog, because there it is.

    I don’t think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice.

    That’s Aristotle’s view. He believed that the object of philosophy was phronesis, or “practical wisdom.” He argued that the role of the statesman was to achieve the best practical regime, not strive for the ideally perfect regime.

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    • Replies: @Intelligent Dasein

    That’s Aristotle’s view. He believed that the object of philosophy was phronesis, or “practical wisdom.” He argued that the role of the statesman was to achieve the best practical regime, not strive for the ideally perfect regime.
     
    Where did you get your Aristotle from, a Cracker Jack box? That's about as complete a misreading of Aristotle as any I've ever seen.

    First of all, the object of "philosophy" is not phronesis. Philosophy has a much broader and more exalted scope than the practical-ethical questions of politics, which Aristotle explicitly stated where not even among the most important. The object of philosophy is being. Ontology is the chief and fundamental philosophical activity, with metaphysics, aesthetics, and epistemology being derivatives or specializations thereof.

    As Aristotle explained in the introductory material to the Nicomachean Ethics, the whole subject of ethics is subordinate to political science. And by political science, he meant the actual practice of building and maintaining the polis, the form of the state. With typical overtones of Aristotelian entelechy and a careful distinction between formal and final causes, the polis was considered to be both the breeding and training ground of ethical practices and the aim and result of those practices. They Aristotelian "virtues" are those character traits which maintain the polis and the individuals within it in their proper form.

    The moral virtues, such as temperance and fortitude, are considered to be means between two opposite extremes of vice, and are concerned with pleasure and pain. For example, fortitude is the mean between cowardice and rashness, although in outward aspects it approximates more to the latter than the former. Excessive desire for pleasure and excessive avoidance of pain (and vice versa in certain pathological cases) are the origins of all moral faults. The need to be corrected, especially in childhood, by the same method with which crooked timbers are straightened out---by bending the other way.

    Phronesis is, like justice, classified not as a moral but as an intellectual virtue, which means its seat and its material rests in the rational part of man rather than the irrational part which merely feels pleasures and pains. This means it is related somehow to knowledge, so it becomes a question of paramount importance to ask what kind of knowledge it is.

    Here Aristotle had to take exception to the Socratic principle that knowledge was virtue itself and that it could be taught. Virtue is partly the result of knowledge and in certain respects it can be (and must be) ingrained, but the situation is not as simple as Socrates made it out to be. In order to find out just what phronesis is, Aristotle had to distinguish it from other forms of knowledge.

    Knowledge of any sort aims at truth, and as truth pertains the rational part of man, those activities producing knowledge are truth-attaining rational qualities. These naturally fall into several categories.

    1. Nous. Certain ideas are immediately grasped as true in an a priori fashion because they cannot be otherwise. The truths of logic, e.g. the laws of identity and the excluded middle, fall into this category. Nous is the direct apprehension of the logos, the rational structure of existence.

    2. Scientia. Truths knowable through demonstration, such as the proofs of geometry, fall into this category. They are not known a priori but they are nevertheless necessarily and universally true. They are not matters for deliberation concerning things that are contingent and changeable.

    3. Sophia. Wisdom is the highest form of knowledge. It combines nous, the immediate grasp of first principles, with scientific knowledge of the most exalted subjects, such as God. Wisdom, however, is not overmuch concerned with man or with the practical order of things, man being not among the best objects in the universe.

    4. Techne. Art is knowledge concerned with producing things, which is developed through experience and practice. Building a house or playing a flute is art. Art always has an end in mind, which is a particular thing.

    So which of these is phronesis? Phronesis cannot be nous, since practical wisdom is acquired over time and is not grasped a priori. It also cannot be science, since it is concerned with things that are changeable and open to deliberation. Nor is it wisdom, since the aim of benefiting man is not the highest sort of knowledge there is. Neither is it art, since art is subordinate to the life of man and has as its product the finite particular thing, while practical wisdom is about the ultimate particular.

    Phronesis therefore belongs in a category of its own. It is the the truth-attaining rational quality that is concerned with those things that are good for human beings. It is correlated with soundness in deliberation and expediency in choosing the right means to the end. It is not the sum of all virtues, but it is distinguished from them insofar as he who possesses prudence will necessarily have all the other virtues as well.

    There is absolutely nothing about any of this that can be construed to mean that Aristotle thought of "practical wisdom" as a sort of compromise between the ideally perfect state and a messy quotidian reality. That kind of reading is, in the words of Pauli, "not even wrong," as Aristotle wasn't even talking about that and would never have addressed himself to such an improperly formulated and decidedly lowbrow question. The polis already is the ideal state in the same sense that the soul is the form of the body; and just as all creatures strive to maintain themselves in that condition which is most conducive and productive of their wellbeing, so the polis is not something to be striven for as if we were capable of doing otherwise, but it is the natural end of our striving, the result and the means of our living activity.

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  82. @Samuel Skinner

    Sending bounty hunters into the free states, whether it was constitutional and legal or not, made a mockery of those states’ sovereignty.
     
    Bounty hunters still exist and still can arrest people in states for crimes that aren't illegal in the locale they are being arrested (for example the age of consent varies throughout the country).

    Were they sent into Upper Canada as well?
     
    Unlike the North, Canada was not part of the United States.

    There should never have been any blacks on that island. If they had belonged there, they would have gotten there by their own means. The Creator knew what He was doing. The white man didn’t.

    The deaths of the planters, whether in Haiti or Virginia, are analogous to later deaths from lung cancer and AIDS. Largely self-inflicted.
     
    It was murder, not suicide. The Haitian elite could have maintained power, but the French Revolutionary assembly decided to backstab them.

    An elite can rule over nearly any number of subjects. Once the unity of the elite is broken and they fight for power, dismantling the system of control and rule, the jackals come and things fall apart.

    Unlike the North, Canada was not part of the United States.

    I see. Sovereignty for me, not for thee.

    But pirated property is pirated property. So why didn’t they go after it? If not with bounty hunters, then in the courts. They didn’t want to tick off their potential allies in the British government? They’d be laughed out of London society?

    If the planters’ claim was legitimate, it would have been legitimate on both sides of Lake Erie or the Bay of Fundy.

    It was murder, not suicide

    The suicidal part was having the Africans there in the first place. And our own civil war, between and within the states, was suicidal for both sides. Either’s “victory” would have been Pyrrhic. Imagine Mississippi today with a million more blacks, and Chicago with a million fewer.

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  83. @Anon
    "Buchanan should have expelled those states, but they supported him and his party, plus he was close– way too close– to the even more effeminate Alabamian King"

    Is there a reason Lincoln didn't? In fact, they didn't vote for him but left on account of his election. Kinda destroys your thesis that Buchanan could have done anything, doesn't it? People like you got what you wanted with Lincoln but still cooked up a war anyway.

    Is there a reason Lincoln didn’t? In fact, they didn’t vote for him but left on account of his election

    In other words, he hadn’t done anything yet.

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    • Replies: @Anon
    "In other words, he hadn’t done anything yet."

    Hitler did nothing wrong...in 1930.
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  84. @Reg Cæsar

    Is there a reason Lincoln didn’t? In fact, they didn’t vote for him but left on account of his election
     
    In other words, he hadn't done anything yet.

    “In other words, he hadn’t done anything yet.”

    Hitler did nothing wrong…in 1930.

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  85. @22pp22
    Today, I commented on a Daily Mail article concerning the frequent jailing of men on false rape charges. I said that we are obsessed with ideology to the point where there is a de facto assumption of guilt except in the case of Rotherham where, due to the ethnicity of the perpetrators, genuine rape victims were ignored or even themselves subjected to persecution.

    I received the following reply:

    (The really creepy bit is where they threaten to contact my employer. RIP democracy in the UK.)

    User has been banned.
    M
    [email protected]


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    After years (!) of criminal investigation no evidence of “misconduct in a public office” by Rotherham police has been found. Just a safe job with a big pension.

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  86. @Cortes
    Straussianism lends the tendency a gravitas it ill deserves.

    My term for it is windbaggery.

    Not restricted to the “Straussians”. I’d include

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Bobbitt

    A prince of windbags. No personal animus other than picking up a copy of “The Shield of Achilles” in a charity shop based on the blurbs and wasting too many hours wading through a muskeg of turgidity.

    Bobbitt is Lyndon Johnson’s nephew. But he has degrees from Princeton, Yale Law, and Oxford. The wind must be hereditary, the pretentiousness acquired.

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  87. @Svigor

    People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s. Really, one of the more remarkable sea-changes in American history was [irrelevant stuff snipped]
     
    "She doesn't get to divorce me to go live with that guy, it's an illegitimate reason" doesn't really work. Doesn't matter why the South wanted to secede. The right to secession isn't the right to secede as long as Syon and the Yankees approve. George didn't approve of American secession.

    Revolution was how the USA was founded. Sadly, the South lacked the grounds for revolution in 1860…
     
    Semantics. And nah, the South had every right to secede.

    “Slavery”, i.e., the presence of Africans on our soil, is by definition war on their fellow white Americans.
     
    That thing you do where you substitute non-literal war for war as if it literally war, with an invading army and guns and mass death and destruction et cetera, isn't half as clever as you seem to think it is. I suppose 600k dead Americans wouldn't find it cute, either.

    Who was it who killed any chance of repatriation? Oh yeah; Yankees. Yes, yes, we know, if only some rebel hadn't shot Saint Lincoln. Saint Lincoln could've gotten the commie-voting Yankee political class to repatriate, yeah, that's the ticket, yeah...

    “People weren’t trying to secede in the name of preserving slavery back in the 177os and 1780s”: maybe not in the name of, but apparently some were impelled by fear of the rise of abolitionism in Britain. The abolitionists had already achieved decisions from both English and Scottish courts that were interpreted as meaning that slavery could not exist within those countries. So if anyone brought a slave to Britain from the Americas that slave became a free man.

    Or if Mr Jefferson had been involved, she’d have become a free woman.

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  88. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declarationism
    Declarationism is a legal philosophy that incorporates the United States Declaration of Independence into the body of case law on level with the United States Constitution. It holds that the Declaration is a natural law document and so that natural law has a place within American jurisprudence. Its main proponents include Harry V. Jaffa and other members of the Claremont Institute.

    Bork … critiqued the Declarationist position, retorting that it is single-mindedly obsessive over the Dred Scott decision and resembles a theology rather than a legal doctrine.

    Bork was best known for his theory that the only way to reconcile the role of the judiciary in the U.S. government against what he terms the “Madisonian” or “counter-majoritarian” dilemma of the judiciary making law without popular approval is for constitutional adjudication to be guided by the framers’ original understanding of the United States Constitution. [...] Bork once said, “The truth is that the judge who looks outside the Constitution always looks inside himself and nowhere else.”[10]

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  89. @Dr. X

    I don’t think conservatism should aspire to be an ideology or a philosophy so much as a simple practice.
     
    That's Aristotle's view. He believed that the object of philosophy was phronesis, or "practical wisdom." He argued that the role of the statesman was to achieve the best practical regime, not strive for the ideally perfect regime.

    That’s Aristotle’s view. He believed that the object of philosophy was phronesis, or “practical wisdom.” He argued that the role of the statesman was to achieve the best practical regime, not strive for the ideally perfect regime.

    Where did you get your Aristotle from, a Cracker Jack box? That’s about as complete a misreading of Aristotle as any I’ve ever seen.

    First of all, the object of “philosophy” is not phronesis. Philosophy has a much broader and more exalted scope than the practical-ethical questions of politics, which Aristotle explicitly stated where not even among the most important. The object of philosophy is being. Ontology is the chief and fundamental philosophical activity, with metaphysics, aesthetics, and epistemology being derivatives or specializations thereof.

    As Aristotle explained in the introductory material to the Nicomachean Ethics, the whole subject of ethics is subordinate to political science. And by political science, he meant the actual practice of building and maintaining the polis, the form of the state. With typical overtones of Aristotelian entelechy and a careful distinction between formal and final causes, the polis was considered to be both the breeding and training ground of ethical practices and the aim and result of those practices. They Aristotelian “virtues” are those character traits which maintain the polis and the individuals within it in their proper form.

    The moral virtues, such as temperance and fortitude, are considered to be means between two opposite extremes of vice, and are concerned with pleasure and pain. For example, fortitude is the mean between cowardice and rashness, although in outward aspects it approximates more to the latter than the former. Excessive desire for pleasure and excessive avoidance of pain (and vice versa in certain pathological cases) are the origins of all moral faults. The need to be corrected, especially in childhood, by the same method with which crooked timbers are straightened out—by bending the other way.

    Phronesis is, like justice, classified not as a moral but as an intellectual virtue, which means its seat and its material rests in the rational part of man rather than the irrational part which merely feels pleasures and pains. This means it is related somehow to knowledge, so it becomes a question of paramount importance to ask what kind of knowledge it is.

    Here Aristotle had to take exception to the Socratic principle that knowledge was virtue itself and that it could be taught. Virtue is partly the result of knowledge and in certain respects it can be (and must be) ingrained, but the situation is not as simple as Socrates made it out to be. In order to find out just what phronesis is, Aristotle had to distinguish it from other forms of knowledge.

    Knowledge of any sort aims at truth, and as truth pertains the rational part of man, those activities producing knowledge are truth-attaining rational qualities. These naturally fall into several categories.

    1. Nous. Certain ideas are immediately grasped as true in an a priori fashion because they cannot be otherwise. The truths of logic, e.g. the laws of identity and the excluded middle, fall into this category. Nous is the direct apprehension of the logos, the rational structure of existence.

    2. Scientia. Truths knowable through demonstration, such as the proofs of geometry, fall into this category. They are not known a priori but they are nevertheless necessarily and universally true. They are not matters for deliberation concerning things that are contingent and changeable.

    3. Sophia. Wisdom is the highest form of knowledge. It combines nous, the immediate grasp of first principles, with scientific knowledge of the most exalted subjects, such as God. Wisdom, however, is not overmuch concerned with man or with the practical order of things, man being not among the best objects in the universe.

    4. Techne. Art is knowledge concerned with producing things, which is developed through experience and practice. Building a house or playing a flute is art. Art always has an end in mind, which is a particular thing.

    So which of these is phronesis? Phronesis cannot be nous, since practical wisdom is acquired over time and is not grasped a priori. It also cannot be science, since it is concerned with things that are changeable and open to deliberation. Nor is it wisdom, since the aim of benefiting man is not the highest sort of knowledge there is. Neither is it art, since art is subordinate to the life of man and has as its product the finite particular thing, while practical wisdom is about the ultimate particular.

    Phronesis therefore belongs in a category of its own. It is the the truth-attaining rational quality that is concerned with those things that are good for human beings. It is correlated with soundness in deliberation and expediency in choosing the right means to the end. It is not the sum of all virtues, but it is distinguished from them insofar as he who possesses prudence will necessarily have all the other virtues as well.

    There is absolutely nothing about any of this that can be construed to mean that Aristotle thought of “practical wisdom” as a sort of compromise between the ideally perfect state and a messy quotidian reality. That kind of reading is, in the words of Pauli, “not even wrong,” as Aristotle wasn’t even talking about that and would never have addressed himself to such an improperly formulated and decidedly lowbrow question. The polis already is the ideal state in the same sense that the soul is the form of the body; and just as all creatures strive to maintain themselves in that condition which is most conducive and productive of their wellbeing, so the polis is not something to be striven for as if we were capable of doing otherwise, but it is the natural end of our striving, the result and the means of our living activity.

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  90. @Rod1963
    The UK is finished. It's white intellectuals and elites have went totally insane and totalitarian.

    Though we in the U.S. and in particular CA isn't far behind.

    http://reason.com/volokh/2017/12/29/calif-prosecuting-man-for-insulting-post

    At best we're maybe 4-5 years behind you folks in the UK. All Trump did was buy us a bit of time, still he can't stop the states from declaring war on whites

    In good British English it should be “request that action BE taken against you”. I get the impression that the person who wrote this is not an L1 speaker of English, just another AA hire paid good money to bully the locals.

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  91. @Rod1963
    The UK is finished. It's white intellectuals and elites have went totally insane and totalitarian.

    Though we in the U.S. and in particular CA isn't far behind.

    http://reason.com/volokh/2017/12/29/calif-prosecuting-man-for-insulting-post

    At best we're maybe 4-5 years behind you folks in the UK. All Trump did was buy us a bit of time, still he can't stop the states from declaring war on whites

    British totalitarianism could well be a sign of elite insecurity. They may have a genuine concern about Britain going the same way of other indigenous white countries like Austria. American elites don’t need to be so heavy-handed because white nationalism in North America and Australia is pretty much a mickey-mouse movement which poses no serious threat to mainstream conservatism.

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  92. @anonymous
    The last true American conservative--N.B.: small "c"-- reposes within Russell Kirk's tomb. Bill Kristol etal need not apply.

    And speaking of Kirk, it is often forgotten that towards the end of his life he wound up parting company with WF Buckley and the folks at National Review. In Kirk's view Buckley and his magazine had debased the conservatism of Edmund Burke, Kirk's philosophical mentor. Given what currently passes for "conservatism"emanating from NR, he was indeed prophetic.

    “The last American conservative” lived in a small town in Michigan writing short fiction and striking occasional poses.

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  93. @Svigor

    He believed that restoring the primacy of natural rights—rights that were God-given or embedded in nature—offered a path to recovery.
     
    Is there a right more natural than that of a population group in the process of speciation to continue on its way? Of course no "serious" philosopher acknowledges it. I'd say they (Straussians, neocons, etc., very much included) overwhelmingly oppose that natural right (for Whites anyway).

    The Declaration, as we know, asserts that all men are created equal. For Jaffa, as Mr. Hayward explains, the profundity of the claim rested on the word “equal.” Equality is not something granted by man-made law but rather built into nature—it is “self-evident,” as the Declaration says. Jaffa argued that this truth lay behind Lincoln’s opposition to slavery and, more broadly, behind the justice of the Union’s cause. …
     
    Had the Union, oh, I dunno, not outlawed slavery in the Union years after outlawing it in the South, that might hold water...

    "Secession for America from Britain but not for the South from the Union" doesn't strike me as equality. More like the opposite.

    As for Lincoln and his supposed embodiment of America's founding values, it seems self-evident nonsense. Slavery was there at the founding, and I don't recall any of the Founders waging war on their fellow White Americans over it. And secession was how the USA was founded.

    Yes, I agree. I’d also point out that Jaffa was delusional on the subject of Lincoln. Lincoln wasn’t opposed to slavery, and he heartily approved of an amendment that would make slavery permanent in the US. Jaffa was delusional on other subjects as well, but he was an absolute bedbug on the subject of Lincoln.

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  94. @Malcolm X-Lax
    OT: Be interested to see an iSteve review of Brawl in Cell Block 99, the new Vince Vaughn movie. It was written and directed by S. Craig Zahler, the same guy who made Bone Tomahawk. Based on both these films, it's safe to say Zahler's no lefty. Here's a sample review by a chick who can't quite come to terms with that fact.

    http://screencrush.com/brawl-in-cell-block-99-review/

    Though it should be noted most critics seem to be fairly positive.

    I suffered through that little piece of dreck and came out wondering how anyone could give the movie a serious review. It’s probably the worst movie made so far in this century.

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  95. @KunioKun
    Everytime I tried to get a Jaffa book it is out of print or checked out at the library. Since neocons can't drool over him enough, especially his book on A. Lincoln, I assume he is full of crap, but it would be nice to actually get a chance to see his crap in print.

    Try the local thrift store. That’s where lots of out-of-print-for-good-reason books can be found. My guess is that once you’ve tried to read one of his books, you’ll wonder why you bothered.

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  96. @dearieme
    "the Divine Right of King’s doctrine popular with English monarchs": a notion that was a century out of date when the D of I was written. War and revolution the 17th century established that the king's right to the throne was in the hands of Parliament, both in England and in Scotland.

    Either Jefferson and his cronies didn't understand this, or they routinely lied about it. My money's on the latter.

    And if Jefferson was under any misapprehension a recent immigrant might have set him straight:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Witherspoon

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  97. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Neil Templeton
    Abolition of slavery is a pretty thin reed for Moralists to cling to. Granted, no man wishes to be a slave. But most men weren't slaves. And slaves were drawn from a highly restricted population. In the current year, if given the proposition of almost certainly giving up something of high value, say liberty or life, in order to free someone from slavery who is very unlikely to be anyone you know, or would ever seek to know, what would the opinion polls say?

    There is still slavery happening in parts of Africa (and I don’t mean metaphorically)

    Not many speak of it or care much about it. They don’t care about slavery in the past either, unless it’s a subject that can be used as a tool in the present.

    There is so much misery, bloodshed, injustice in the history of man that this narrow fixation on slavery of blacks/by whites is transparently a sick scam. This scam will end the minute whites collectively say ‘enough’.

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  98. @22pp22
    Today, I commented on a Daily Mail article concerning the frequent jailing of men on false rape charges. I said that we are obsessed with ideology to the point where there is a de facto assumption of guilt except in the case of Rotherham where, due to the ethnicity of the perpetrators, genuine rape victims were ignored or even themselves subjected to persecution.

    I received the following reply:

    (The really creepy bit is where they threaten to contact my employer. RIP democracy in the UK.)

    User has been banned.
    M
    [email protected]


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    Expect more from that trashy tabloid?

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  99. @Dr. X

    Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was.

     

    Sure.

    Strauss advocated a close analysis and reappraisal of the texts of what he called "ancient" philosophy (e.g., Plato, Aristotle etc.) because the questions and problems presented in those texts (Equality vs. inequality, What is justice?, What is the ideal regime? What is the proper exercise of political power?) were perennial, fixed in human nature, and thus relevant today.

    He was particularly critical of 20th century totalitarianisms, such as Nazism and communism, which believed that history constituted "progress" toward some kind of "new man" and thus believed that they had all the answers and that philosophy was unnecessary. Strauss's emphasis on the study ancient and classical texts appeared to be "conservative" in contrast not only with historicist doctrines such as communism, but in contrast with liberal democratic "progressivism" as well.

    Strauss also understood that throughout human history, to ask questions about justice and the proper use of political power was necessarily risky -- if not fatal, as the case of Socrates demonstrated. Therefore, in order to get his message out to the relatively few who could understand it and not run afoul of the authorities, Strauss recognized that political philosophers often spoke in esoteric rather than exoteric terms, and that a proper study of ancient texts necessitated an understanding of this problem and a close critical study of the text and of the political context for which they were written.

    ” Therefore, in order to get his message out to the relatively few who could understand it and not run afoul of the authorities, Strauss recognized that political philosophers often spoke in esoteric rather than exoteric terms”

    a bull shit artist?

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  100. @Dr. X

    Could someone define “Straussianism”? I’m still unsure what this guy’s contribution was.

     

    Sure.

    Strauss advocated a close analysis and reappraisal of the texts of what he called "ancient" philosophy (e.g., Plato, Aristotle etc.) because the questions and problems presented in those texts (Equality vs. inequality, What is justice?, What is the ideal regime? What is the proper exercise of political power?) were perennial, fixed in human nature, and thus relevant today.

    He was particularly critical of 20th century totalitarianisms, such as Nazism and communism, which believed that history constituted "progress" toward some kind of "new man" and thus believed that they had all the answers and that philosophy was unnecessary. Strauss's emphasis on the study ancient and classical texts appeared to be "conservative" in contrast not only with historicist doctrines such as communism, but in contrast with liberal democratic "progressivism" as well.

    Strauss also understood that throughout human history, to ask questions about justice and the proper use of political power was necessarily risky -- if not fatal, as the case of Socrates demonstrated. Therefore, in order to get his message out to the relatively few who could understand it and not run afoul of the authorities, Strauss recognized that political philosophers often spoke in esoteric rather than exoteric terms, and that a proper study of ancient texts necessitated an understanding of this problem and a close critical study of the text and of the political context for which they were written.

    speaken de truth to power hahahaa. clowns the lot of you.

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  101. @Art Deco
    Of course, Frank Meyer, one of the leading figures in the conservative movement in the ’50s, thought that the whole modern conservative movement (i.e., post 1950) was largely a CIA operation, and he was in a position to know.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/18/%22Citation_needed%22.jpg

    Art Deco wrote to me:

    Citation Needed

    Oh, come off it! That is like giving a citation for the fact that Hillary is not President (though, come to think of it, she seems to think she actually won).

    By the post-1950 modern conservative movement, I of course meant the pro-Cold-War “conservative” movement centered around William F. Buckley Jr and National Review. These were the guys behind the Goldwater movement, the early Reagan movement, etc.

    Bill Buckley himself bragged about the fact that he was with the Company. I saw him do so on TV, and he did so also in print. He was proud of having worked for Howard Hunt of Watergate fame.

    You really don’t know that?????

    Okay, so let’s assume you really are ingenuous in really knowing nothing about the political history of the last seventy years.

    Here is a link from NR itself where Buckley wheezes on about when he “was inducted into the CIA as a deep cover agent.”

    And here is a discussion by Murray Rothbard, who was a member of Buckley’s circle for a time in the 1950s, of Meyer’s views.

    Note that neither I nor Rothbard claim to know for sure that “movement” conservatism was a CIA black op, merely that Frank Meyer, who was well-positioned to know about such things, thought it was.

    It does make sense, though. There were other people prominent in the NR circle who had ties to the CIA or its predecessor, the OSS. We know that the CIA was involved heavily in influencing intellectuals, the publishing industry, and various political movements (try googling the Congress for Cultural Freedom, Operation Mockingbird, Thomas Braden, Encounter magazine, etc.). The pre-Buckley Right tended in an “isolationist” direction (for example, Bob Taft, “Mr. Republican,” was skeptical of many of Truman’s moves that ignited the Cold War).

    The pre-Buckley Right was the major domestic threat to the Cold War agenda of the CIA. It does all fit together.

    Personally, I think it is very likely that Frank Meyer was right. But, I can’t prove it: I merely noted that that was his opinion.

    (Though, if you think the CIA would just never, ever do anything like that at all, there is a bridge in Brooklyn that I would like to sell you.)

    Dave

    Full disclosure: In the ’80s and ’90s I myself did technical work for the US Intelligence Community. I am sure you will understand why I cannot go into details.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Buckley worked for the CIA (I think for about a year, stationed in Mexico). For an intelligent person, that's an interesting biographical curio about Buckley. For you, it's an indicator that everything anyone ever connected to him did was the issue of the CIA. I can't help it if you're a fantasist and a crank.
    , @J.Ross
    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what's interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they're sincere and reactive: Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago and posts (probably not expecting a reply due to the age of the thread) that some typo or contextually meaningless quibble either renders your entire argument invalid, or proves that you're stupid or insane. So if Deco's little plan works, future readers come and hopefully see the brilliant Deco deploying pilpul, with his bested adversaries silent in the face of such powerful reasoning. His line just happens to be more militantly conformist and establishmentarian than Jack Webb's Dragnet. I'm sure that's a coincidence.
    You argue with him you're arguing with a traffic cop.
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  102. @PhysicistDave
    Art Deco wrote to me:

    Citation Needed
     
    Oh, come off it! That is like giving a citation for the fact that Hillary is not President (though, come to think of it, she seems to think she actually won).

    By the post-1950 modern conservative movement, I of course meant the pro-Cold-War "conservative" movement centered around William F. Buckley Jr and National Review. These were the guys behind the Goldwater movement, the early Reagan movement, etc.

    Bill Buckley himself bragged about the fact that he was with the Company. I saw him do so on TV, and he did so also in print. He was proud of having worked for Howard Hunt of Watergate fame.

    You really don't know that?????

    Okay, so let's assume you really are ingenuous in really knowing nothing about the political history of the last seventy years.

    Here is a link from NR itself where Buckley wheezes on about when he "was inducted into the CIA as a deep cover agent."

    And here is a discussion by Murray Rothbard, who was a member of Buckley's circle for a time in the 1950s, of Meyer's views.

    Note that neither I nor Rothbard claim to know for sure that "movement" conservatism was a CIA black op, merely that Frank Meyer, who was well-positioned to know about such things, thought it was.

    It does make sense, though. There were other people prominent in the NR circle who had ties to the CIA or its predecessor, the OSS. We know that the CIA was involved heavily in influencing intellectuals, the publishing industry, and various political movements (try googling the Congress for Cultural Freedom, Operation Mockingbird, Thomas Braden, Encounter magazine, etc.). The pre-Buckley Right tended in an "isolationist" direction (for example, Bob Taft, "Mr. Republican," was skeptical of many of Truman's moves that ignited the Cold War).

    The pre-Buckley Right was the major domestic threat to the Cold War agenda of the CIA. It does all fit together.

    Personally, I think it is very likely that Frank Meyer was right. But, I can't prove it: I merely noted that that was his opinion.

    (Though, if you think the CIA would just never, ever do anything like that at all, there is a bridge in Brooklyn that I would like to sell you.)

    Dave

    Full disclosure: In the '80s and '90s I myself did technical work for the US Intelligence Community. I am sure you will understand why I cannot go into details.

    Buckley worked for the CIA (I think for about a year, stationed in Mexico). For an intelligent person, that’s an interesting biographical curio about Buckley. For you, it’s an indicator that everything anyone ever connected to him did was the issue of the CIA. I can’t help it if you’re a fantasist and a crank.

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    • Replies: @Sean
    The CIA probably were closer to Buckley. JFK taking up the Missile Gap was the key event. Reagan simply gave the Dems a taste of their own medicine. The CIA were helpless against Albert "Missile Gap" Wohlstetter's Team B .
    , @PhysicistDave
    Here is an interesting report on some recent talks by unz.com's own Paul Gottfried that touch on the topics that Art the Denialist and I have been, um, discussing.

    Of particular interest is:

    In the morning class on modern conservative politics, Dr. Gottfried described the evolution of the term “conservative” in the United States. Few intellectuals before 1950, he explained, would have identified themselves as “conservative;” those who appeared conservative tended to see themselves instead as “classical liberals.” William F. Buckley, Gottfried agreed, stands as the primary “architect” of the modern conservative movement. Buckley transformed it by holding disparate tendencies together and by purging isolationists, members of the John Birch Society, and others elements he deemed too extreme.
    ...
    Gottfried contended that the real reason William F. Buckley had purged the John Birch Society was because they did not support the Vietnam War. The purported reason was their anti-semitism and racism, which in truth, Gottfried maintained, were largely “baseless smears.”
     
    As the reporter also notes:

    On the subject of modern conservative politics, Gottfried brings unquestioned expertise as a participant in many key events and as an intellectual force on the right. He knew personally many of the heavy-hitters who joined with William F. Buckley to form National Review.
     
    I very highly recommend Paul's scholarly but readable The Conservative Movement (be sure to get the "revised edition," not the first edition that was co-authored with Tom Fleming).

    And, no, I have no idea what Paul's view is of Frank Meyer's conjecture that NR was a CIA operation.
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  103. @guest
    Harry Jaffa a "giant of American intellectualism?" In what world?

    I suppose a world in which people use the phrase "American intellectualism." Which isn't my world.

    I have followed the conservative intellectual movement for a long while. Though I've heard of Jaffa, and actually read a smidgen, he's way, way down the list. In the basement, like. Of the three or four times I've heard mention of him, they were all excoriations.

    Of course, I have spent most of my time in the last several years in the Dissident Right. There, they don't think highly of his type. In mainstream circles they may respect him. Then again, they respect clowns like George Will, so what do they know?

    Jaffa was a speech writer in the ’64 Goldwater campaign, including penning the famous “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice” line.

    I’d guess the pair are more likely to have taught a few people who later taught people who taught some legal profs.

    Read More
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  104. @Art Deco
    Buckley worked for the CIA (I think for about a year, stationed in Mexico). For an intelligent person, that's an interesting biographical curio about Buckley. For you, it's an indicator that everything anyone ever connected to him did was the issue of the CIA. I can't help it if you're a fantasist and a crank.

    The CIA probably were closer to Buckley. JFK taking up the Missile Gap was the key event. Reagan simply gave the Dems a taste of their own medicine. The CIA were helpless against Albert “Missile Gap” Wohlstetter’s Team B .

    Read More
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  105. The CIA probably were closer to Buckley. JFK taking up the Missile Gap was the key event. Reagan simply gave the Dems a taste of their own medicine. The CIA were helpless against Albert “Missile Gap” Wohlstetter’s Team B .

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2003/05/29/the-strategist-and-the-philosopher/

    There are no direct links existing between Albert Wohlstetter and Leo Strauss (d. 1973) prior to the official emergence of neoconservatism. But within the neoconservative network, some of them have spawned bridges between the teachings of these two men, despite the fundamental difference separating their fields of research.

    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss, Abram Shulsky, was big in George W. Bush’s own Iraq war “Team B”- the Office of Special Plans. Daniel Pipes, a major voice urging regieme change for Iran is the son or team B’s Richard Pipes, while Perle was a protege of Wohlstetter.

    Strauss’s basic worry was that liberal democracy was fundamentally unstable because the West is the Weimar Republic and will fall victim to nihilism a la Nietzsche and Nazism without something to believe in apart from historical fact. So we get Ancient Greeks (and via Jaffa, Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence) as the ultimate truth.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss,

    Paul Wolfowitz took two courses from Strauss during his undergraduate years.

    Strauss' airy philosophical concerns are rather remote from the world of day-to-day policymaking. The whole Strauss meme is stupid.
    , @Art Deco
    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss, Abram Shulsky, was big in George W. Bush’s own Iraq war “Team B”- the Office of Special Plans. Daniel Pipes, a major voice urging regieme change for Iran is the son or team B’s Richard Pipes, while Perle was a protege of Wohlstetter.

    "Team B" refers to a task force in the Central Intelligence Agency convened in 1976 to assess Soviet military expenditure. See Ron Nessen's account of the controversies surrounding the CIA at that time. He said the biggest bombshell of the era was the admission by the CIA that they had been grossly underestimating Soviet military expenditure. After the scads of stories exploring CIA misbehavior at the time, this one received only pro-forma attention from the media. Nessen mused that that might be because it was revealed through a formal announcement rather than being leaked to a reporter on the QT. This antedated the Iraq War by a generation.

    Daniel Pipes is Richard Pipes son. He is a specialist in the Arab world. Not sure how he's earned a living all these years as he's never had a regular academic position. He's been the office manager of some grant-funded advocacy services. He's not a person of particular influence over policy and his most salient policy position was that the U.S. Government should appoint a dictator in Iraq and then withdraw. His candidate was Ayad Allawi. It didn't seem like a well thought out program of action. He differs from other regional specialists in that he friendly to Israel rather than hostile (which may explain why he was untouchable after he finished his dissertation).

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That's the connection between them.
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  106. @PhysicistDave
    Art Deco wrote to me:

    Citation Needed
     
    Oh, come off it! That is like giving a citation for the fact that Hillary is not President (though, come to think of it, she seems to think she actually won).

    By the post-1950 modern conservative movement, I of course meant the pro-Cold-War "conservative" movement centered around William F. Buckley Jr and National Review. These were the guys behind the Goldwater movement, the early Reagan movement, etc.

    Bill Buckley himself bragged about the fact that he was with the Company. I saw him do so on TV, and he did so also in print. He was proud of having worked for Howard Hunt of Watergate fame.

    You really don't know that?????

    Okay, so let's assume you really are ingenuous in really knowing nothing about the political history of the last seventy years.

    Here is a link from NR itself where Buckley wheezes on about when he "was inducted into the CIA as a deep cover agent."

    And here is a discussion by Murray Rothbard, who was a member of Buckley's circle for a time in the 1950s, of Meyer's views.

    Note that neither I nor Rothbard claim to know for sure that "movement" conservatism was a CIA black op, merely that Frank Meyer, who was well-positioned to know about such things, thought it was.

    It does make sense, though. There were other people prominent in the NR circle who had ties to the CIA or its predecessor, the OSS. We know that the CIA was involved heavily in influencing intellectuals, the publishing industry, and various political movements (try googling the Congress for Cultural Freedom, Operation Mockingbird, Thomas Braden, Encounter magazine, etc.). The pre-Buckley Right tended in an "isolationist" direction (for example, Bob Taft, "Mr. Republican," was skeptical of many of Truman's moves that ignited the Cold War).

    The pre-Buckley Right was the major domestic threat to the Cold War agenda of the CIA. It does all fit together.

    Personally, I think it is very likely that Frank Meyer was right. But, I can't prove it: I merely noted that that was his opinion.

    (Though, if you think the CIA would just never, ever do anything like that at all, there is a bridge in Brooklyn that I would like to sell you.)

    Dave

    Full disclosure: In the '80s and '90s I myself did technical work for the US Intelligence Community. I am sure you will understand why I cannot go into details.

    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what’s interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they’re sincere and reactive: Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago and posts (probably not expecting a reply due to the age of the thread) that some typo or contextually meaningless quibble either renders your entire argument invalid, or proves that you’re stupid or insane. So if Deco’s little plan works, future readers come and hopefully see the brilliant Deco deploying pilpul, with his bested adversaries silent in the face of such powerful reasoning. His line just happens to be more militantly conformist and establishmentarian than Jack Webb’s Dragnet. I’m sure that’s a coincidence.
    You argue with him you’re arguing with a traffic cop.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago

    Find one.
    , @PhysicistDave
    J. Ross wisely wrote to me:

    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what’s interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they’re sincere and reactive:
     
    Yeah, you're no doubt right. But sometimes I like responding to the trolls because it gives me a chance to post some facts that others may find useful or interesting, even though our pal Art the Denialist obviously is not interested in mere mundane facts.
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  107. @Sean
    The CIA probably were closer to Buckley. JFK taking up the Missile Gap was the key event. Reagan simply gave the Dems a taste of their own medicine. The CIA were helpless against Albert "Missile Gap" Wohlstetter's Team B .

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2003/05/29/the-strategist-and-the-philosopher/

    There are no direct links existing between Albert Wohlstetter and Leo Strauss (d. 1973) prior to the official emergence of neoconservatism. But within the neoconservative network, some of them have spawned bridges between the teachings of these two men, despite the fundamental difference separating their fields of research.
     

    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss, Abram Shulsky, was big in George W. Bush's own Iraq war "Team B"- the Office of Special Plans. Daniel Pipes, a major voice urging regieme change for Iran is the son or team B's Richard Pipes, while Perle was a protege of Wohlstetter.

    Strauss's basic worry was that liberal democracy was fundamentally unstable because the West is the Weimar Republic and will fall victim to nihilism a la Nietzsche and Nazism without something to believe in apart from historical fact. So we get Ancient Greeks (and via Jaffa, Jefferson's Declaration of Independence) as the ultimate truth.

    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss,

    Paul Wolfowitz took two courses from Strauss during his undergraduate years.

    Strauss’ airy philosophical concerns are rather remote from the world of day-to-day policymaking. The whole Strauss meme is stupid.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sean
    http://www.ashokkarra.com/2013/03/briefly-noted-leo-strauss-on-german-nihilism/

    Strauss taught that liberalism in its modern form (which is oriented toward universal freedom as opposed to "ancient liberalism" which is oriented toward human excellence), contained within it an intrinsic tendency towards extreme relativism, which in turn led to two types of nihilism ...In the belief that 20th century relativism, scientism, historicism, and nihilism were all implicated in the deterioration of modern society and philosophy, Strauss sought to uncover the philosophical pathways that had led to this situation. The resultant study led him to advocate a tentative return to classical political philosophy as a starting point for judging political action.[43]
     

    For Nietzsche, there is no objective order or structure in the world except what we give it. Penetrating the façades buttressing convictions, the nihilist discovers that all values are baseless ...
     
    I am not sure how many courses of Martin Heidegger Strauss attended, but the Heidegger take on Nietzsche was surely the origin of neocon concern with providing these stories about the US being founded on some objective order or structure. Strauss's influence on the neocons was very clear, Irving Kristol talked explicitly about nihilism. They thought the sixties was Weimar, homosexuality and all.
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  108. @J.Ross
    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what's interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they're sincere and reactive: Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago and posts (probably not expecting a reply due to the age of the thread) that some typo or contextually meaningless quibble either renders your entire argument invalid, or proves that you're stupid or insane. So if Deco's little plan works, future readers come and hopefully see the brilliant Deco deploying pilpul, with his bested adversaries silent in the face of such powerful reasoning. His line just happens to be more militantly conformist and establishmentarian than Jack Webb's Dragnet. I'm sure that's a coincidence.
    You argue with him you're arguing with a traffic cop.

    Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago

    Find one.

    Read More
    • Replies: @J.Ross
    Okay how about every single time I have ever seen you, to include this one, which was started Dec 30 and has your reply at Jan 2? If you look at iSteve comment threads past a certain threshold, it's just Art talking to himself about how everyone is not only wrong but intolerably stupid.
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  109. Art Deco wrote to me:

    Buckley worked for the CIA (I think for about a year, stationed in Mexico). For an intelligent person, that’s an interesting biographical curio about Buckley.

    No, it was a good deal more than a year. And, if you think that someone who worked for the Company stops working for the Company when he is no longer on the payroll… well, I’d still like to sell you that bridge in Brooklyn!

    And, it was not just Buckley: as Rothbard explained (but you did not bother to read that, did you?) there were a number of people in the NR inner circle who had CIA/OSS connections. And, Rothbard, unlike you, was in the NR circle back in the ’50s. NR in its early days certainly looked like a CIA op.

    And, then thee was Frank Meyer, who was in the NR inner circle and in a position to know, unlike you.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    I can’t help it if you’re a fantasist and a crank.

    Like Rothbard, I admit that I do not know if Frank Meyer was right about NR, and therefore the post-1950 conservative movement, being a CIA black op.

    But if you dogmatically reject that possibility, given the other well-documented activities that we know for certain that the Company was involved in and given that Frank Meyer certainly knew more than you do, well, I think it is quite clear who is the “fantasist” and “crank.” In your heart, Art the Denialist, you know the truth.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    And, it was not just Buckley: as Rothbard explained (but you did not bother to read that, did you?) there were a number of people in the NR inner circle who had CIA/OSS connections. And, Rothbard, unlike you, was in the NR circle back in the ’50s. NR in its early days certainly looked like a CIA op.

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard's published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it 'nauseating'. A discussion of Rothbard's dealings with Buckley can be found in work by George Nash.

    I think Philip Giraldi claims to have worked for the CIA (or was it just Army intelligence?). Perhaps you fancy Unz and The American Conservative are elaborate psyops.

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  110. @J.Ross
    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what's interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they're sincere and reactive: Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago and posts (probably not expecting a reply due to the age of the thread) that some typo or contextually meaningless quibble either renders your entire argument invalid, or proves that you're stupid or insane. So if Deco's little plan works, future readers come and hopefully see the brilliant Deco deploying pilpul, with his bested adversaries silent in the face of such powerful reasoning. His line just happens to be more militantly conformist and establishmentarian than Jack Webb's Dragnet. I'm sure that's a coincidence.
    You argue with him you're arguing with a traffic cop.

    J. Ross wisely wrote to me:

    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what’s interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they’re sincere and reactive:

    Yeah, you’re no doubt right. But sometimes I like responding to the trolls because it gives me a chance to post some facts that others may find useful or interesting, even though our pal Art the Denialist obviously is not interested in mere mundane facts.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Desiderius

    Yeah, you’re no doubt right.
     
    No, he's mistaken.

    AD is antisocial, but he's not a troll.

    He's also more often than not a valuable contributor, both as devil's advocate and cross-examiner of comfortable arguments.
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  111. @Sean
    The CIA probably were closer to Buckley. JFK taking up the Missile Gap was the key event. Reagan simply gave the Dems a taste of their own medicine. The CIA were helpless against Albert "Missile Gap" Wohlstetter's Team B .

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2003/05/29/the-strategist-and-the-philosopher/

    There are no direct links existing between Albert Wohlstetter and Leo Strauss (d. 1973) prior to the official emergence of neoconservatism. But within the neoconservative network, some of them have spawned bridges between the teachings of these two men, despite the fundamental difference separating their fields of research.
     

    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss, Abram Shulsky, was big in George W. Bush's own Iraq war "Team B"- the Office of Special Plans. Daniel Pipes, a major voice urging regieme change for Iran is the son or team B's Richard Pipes, while Perle was a protege of Wohlstetter.

    Strauss's basic worry was that liberal democracy was fundamentally unstable because the West is the Weimar Republic and will fall victim to nihilism a la Nietzsche and Nazism without something to believe in apart from historical fact. So we get Ancient Greeks (and via Jaffa, Jefferson's Declaration of Independence) as the ultimate truth.

    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss, Abram Shulsky, was big in George W. Bush’s own Iraq war “Team B”- the Office of Special Plans. Daniel Pipes, a major voice urging regieme change for Iran is the son or team B’s Richard Pipes, while Perle was a protege of Wohlstetter.

    “Team B” refers to a task force in the Central Intelligence Agency convened in 1976 to assess Soviet military expenditure. See Ron Nessen’s account of the controversies surrounding the CIA at that time. He said the biggest bombshell of the era was the admission by the CIA that they had been grossly underestimating Soviet military expenditure. After the scads of stories exploring CIA misbehavior at the time, this one received only pro-forma attention from the media. Nessen mused that that might be because it was revealed through a formal announcement rather than being leaked to a reporter on the QT. This antedated the Iraq War by a generation.

    Daniel Pipes is Richard Pipes son. He is a specialist in the Arab world. Not sure how he’s earned a living all these years as he’s never had a regular academic position. He’s been the office manager of some grant-funded advocacy services. He’s not a person of particular influence over policy and his most salient policy position was that the U.S. Government should appoint a dictator in Iraq and then withdraw. His candidate was Ayad Allawi. It didn’t seem like a well thought out program of action. He differs from other regional specialists in that he friendly to Israel rather than hostile (which may explain why he was untouchable after he finished his dissertation).

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Opinionator
    https://www.twitter.com/DanielPipes/status/947828426874019840
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  112. @PhysicistDave
    Art Deco wrote to me:

    Buckley worked for the CIA (I think for about a year, stationed in Mexico). For an intelligent person, that’s an interesting biographical curio about Buckley.
     
    No, it was a good deal more than a year. And, if you think that someone who worked for the Company stops working for the Company when he is no longer on the payroll... well, I'd still like to sell you that bridge in Brooklyn!

    And, it was not just Buckley: as Rothbard explained (but you did not bother to read that, did you?) there were a number of people in the NR inner circle who had CIA/OSS connections. And, Rothbard, unlike you, was in the NR circle back in the '50s. NR in its early days certainly looked like a CIA op.

    And, then thee was Frank Meyer, who was in the NR inner circle and in a position to know, unlike you.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    I can’t help it if you’re a fantasist and a crank.
     
    Like Rothbard, I admit that I do not know if Frank Meyer was right about NR, and therefore the post-1950 conservative movement, being a CIA black op.

    But if you dogmatically reject that possibility, given the other well-documented activities that we know for certain that the Company was involved in and given that Frank Meyer certainly knew more than you do, well, I think it is quite clear who is the "fantasist" and "crank." In your heart, Art the Denialist, you know the truth.

    And, it was not just Buckley: as Rothbard explained (but you did not bother to read that, did you?) there were a number of people in the NR inner circle who had CIA/OSS connections. And, Rothbard, unlike you, was in the NR circle back in the ’50s. NR in its early days certainly looked like a CIA op.

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard’s published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it ‘nauseating’. A discussion of Rothbard’s dealings with Buckley can be found in work by George Nash.

    I think Philip Giraldi claims to have worked for the CIA (or was it just Army intelligence?). Perhaps you fancy Unz and The American Conservative are elaborate psyops.

    Read More
    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard’s published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it ‘nauseating’.
     
    Citation please???

    I followed the Buckley-Rothbard conflict for years and never recall Buckley being quite that gross. I do remember his publishing a childishly nasty obit when Murray died: fortunately, he did allow a rebuttal by the much more human Florence King.

    Buckley was a hater: he hated an awful lot of people -- Ayn Rand, Pat Buchanan, the Birchers, Rothbard, and many, many others.

    And, as Paul Gottfried has shown, Buckley ruthlessly, falsely, and maliciously smeared the people he hated: as noted in my earlier post, Paul has made clear that Buckley made false accusations against the Birchers because they were not 100 percent on board with his Cold War insanity. (Was Buckley crazier than the Birchers? Oh, yes, he was, he really was!)

    I suppose the most shameful example of Buckley's contemptible behavior was the issue-length "In Search of Anti-Semistism" attack he launched in NR against Pat Buchanan.

    I knew Rothbard, and he just laughed about Buckley's bizarrely false attacks on him (Buckley just fantasized the weird idea that Rothbard was obsessed with lighthouses, for example: maybe it was Buckley's own fantasy that he was a real sailor that generated the other fantasy). But, Buckley's vicious slanders of Pat Buchanan must really have hurt Pat.

    Of course, Pat is a gentleman, unlike Herr Buckley, and so did not respond in kind.

    If there is a Hell, I am sure Buckley is having a very warm time!
    , @PhysicistDave
    To anyone still following Art the Denialist's little fantasy here:

    I think the Denialist's reference to Buckley finding something "nauseating" may have been Buckley's reaction to something Karl Hess, not Rothbard wrote. (but, hey, what do you expect of our favorite troll, Art the Denialist?)

    And, here is a very, very gentle rebuke to Buckley by the Jewish neocon Nathan Glazer pointing out that Buckley went after Buchanan simply because of:

    the split within conservative ranks over the gulf war. National Review, Mr. Buckley and many other conservatives supported the military action against Iraq. Others, including Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran, argued that it did not serve American interests but rather Israeli interests.
     
    Indeed.

    Professor Glazer was certainly no supporter of Pat Buchanan! But, unlike the evil Buckley, he could conceive of disagreeing with someone without libeling them.

    RIH, Bill Buckley.
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  113. @Art Deco
    Buckley worked for the CIA (I think for about a year, stationed in Mexico). For an intelligent person, that's an interesting biographical curio about Buckley. For you, it's an indicator that everything anyone ever connected to him did was the issue of the CIA. I can't help it if you're a fantasist and a crank.

    Here is an interesting report on some recent talks by unz.com’s own Paul Gottfried that touch on the topics that Art the Denialist and I have been, um, discussing.

    Of particular interest is:

    In the morning class on modern conservative politics, Dr. Gottfried described the evolution of the term “conservative” in the United States. Few intellectuals before 1950, he explained, would have identified themselves as “conservative;” those who appeared conservative tended to see themselves instead as “classical liberals.” William F. Buckley, Gottfried agreed, stands as the primary “architect” of the modern conservative movement. Buckley transformed it by holding disparate tendencies together and by purging isolationists, members of the John Birch Society, and others elements he deemed too extreme.

    Gottfried contended that the real reason William F. Buckley had purged the John Birch Society was because they did not support the Vietnam War. The purported reason was their anti-semitism and racism, which in truth, Gottfried maintained, were largely “baseless smears.”

    As the reporter also notes:

    On the subject of modern conservative politics, Gottfried brings unquestioned expertise as a participant in many key events and as an intellectual force on the right. He knew personally many of the heavy-hitters who joined with William F. Buckley to form National Review.

    I very highly recommend Paul’s scholarly but readable The Conservative Movement (be sure to get the “revised edition,” not the first edition that was co-authored with Tom Fleming).

    And, no, I have no idea what Paul’s view is of Frank Meyer’s conjecture that NR was a CIA operation.

    Read More
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  114. @Art Deco
    And, it was not just Buckley: as Rothbard explained (but you did not bother to read that, did you?) there were a number of people in the NR inner circle who had CIA/OSS connections. And, Rothbard, unlike you, was in the NR circle back in the ’50s. NR in its early days certainly looked like a CIA op.

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard's published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it 'nauseating'. A discussion of Rothbard's dealings with Buckley can be found in work by George Nash.

    I think Philip Giraldi claims to have worked for the CIA (or was it just Army intelligence?). Perhaps you fancy Unz and The American Conservative are elaborate psyops.

    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard’s published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it ‘nauseating’.

    Citation please???

    I followed the Buckley-Rothbard conflict for years and never recall Buckley being quite that gross. I do remember his publishing a childishly nasty obit when Murray died: fortunately, he did allow a rebuttal by the much more human Florence King.

    Buckley was a hater: he hated an awful lot of people — Ayn Rand, Pat Buchanan, the Birchers, Rothbard, and many, many others.

    And, as Paul Gottfried has shown, Buckley ruthlessly, falsely, and maliciously smeared the people he hated: as noted in my earlier post, Paul has made clear that Buckley made false accusations against the Birchers because they were not 100 percent on board with his Cold War insanity. (Was Buckley crazier than the Birchers? Oh, yes, he was, he really was!)

    I suppose the most shameful example of Buckley’s contemptible behavior was the issue-length “In Search of Anti-Semistism” attack he launched in NR against Pat Buchanan.

    I knew Rothbard, and he just laughed about Buckley’s bizarrely false attacks on him (Buckley just fantasized the weird idea that Rothbard was obsessed with lighthouses, for example: maybe it was Buckley’s own fantasy that he was a real sailor that generated the other fantasy). But, Buckley’s vicious slanders of Pat Buchanan must really have hurt Pat.

    Of course, Pat is a gentleman, unlike Herr Buckley, and so did not respond in kind.

    If there is a Hell, I am sure Buckley is having a very warm time!

    Read More
    • Replies: @polskijoe
    Didnt Buckley ideas change in his later years and for the worse? Perhaps the CIA had some influence on that?

    Some conspiracy websites claim he was Knights of Malta (since im not an insider, cant say).

    Catholic and CIA connection was at its highest after WW2 and during Reagan years.
    Today I see far more Liberal and Zionist influence.

    John Birch Society is strange, because apparently at the top there are Jewish finance,
    they like to employ gentiles including Catholics to give a idea they work for the middle class (true or not I dont know). Today they seem to support Zionism. Maybe you can explain more.

    , @Art Deco
    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard's work is delineated. I'm not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review and I don't think reviewing Reader's Guide you could locate a contribution published after 1962 or thereabouts if there were even one. Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene. Quite the dead end.
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  115. @Art Deco
    And, it was not just Buckley: as Rothbard explained (but you did not bother to read that, did you?) there were a number of people in the NR inner circle who had CIA/OSS connections. And, Rothbard, unlike you, was in the NR circle back in the ’50s. NR in its early days certainly looked like a CIA op.

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard's published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it 'nauseating'. A discussion of Rothbard's dealings with Buckley can be found in work by George Nash.

    I think Philip Giraldi claims to have worked for the CIA (or was it just Army intelligence?). Perhaps you fancy Unz and The American Conservative are elaborate psyops.

    To anyone still following Art the Denialist’s little fantasy here:

    I think the Denialist’s reference to Buckley finding something “nauseating” may have been Buckley’s reaction to something Karl Hess, not Rothbard wrote. (but, hey, what do you expect of our favorite troll, Art the Denialist?)

    And, here is a very, very gentle rebuke to Buckley by the Jewish neocon Nathan Glazer pointing out that Buckley went after Buchanan simply because of:

    the split within conservative ranks over the gulf war. National Review, Mr. Buckley and many other conservatives supported the military action against Iraq. Others, including Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran, argued that it did not serve American interests but rather Israeli interests.

    Indeed.

    Professor Glazer was certainly no supporter of Pat Buchanan! But, unlike the evil Buckley, he could conceive of disagreeing with someone without libeling them.

    RIH, Bill Buckley.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Buckley's dismissal of Rothbard antedated the Gulf War by nearly 30 years. Buckley never libeled Buchanan or Sobran.
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  116. @Art Deco
    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss, Abram Shulsky, was big in George W. Bush’s own Iraq war “Team B”- the Office of Special Plans. Daniel Pipes, a major voice urging regieme change for Iran is the son or team B’s Richard Pipes, while Perle was a protege of Wohlstetter.

    "Team B" refers to a task force in the Central Intelligence Agency convened in 1976 to assess Soviet military expenditure. See Ron Nessen's account of the controversies surrounding the CIA at that time. He said the biggest bombshell of the era was the admission by the CIA that they had been grossly underestimating Soviet military expenditure. After the scads of stories exploring CIA misbehavior at the time, this one received only pro-forma attention from the media. Nessen mused that that might be because it was revealed through a formal announcement rather than being leaked to a reporter on the QT. This antedated the Iraq War by a generation.

    Daniel Pipes is Richard Pipes son. He is a specialist in the Arab world. Not sure how he's earned a living all these years as he's never had a regular academic position. He's been the office manager of some grant-funded advocacy services. He's not a person of particular influence over policy and his most salient policy position was that the U.S. Government should appoint a dictator in Iraq and then withdraw. His candidate was Ayad Allawi. It didn't seem like a well thought out program of action. He differs from other regional specialists in that he friendly to Israel rather than hostile (which may explain why he was untouchable after he finished his dissertation).

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That's the connection between them.

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  117. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard’s published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it ‘nauseating’.
     
    Citation please???

    I followed the Buckley-Rothbard conflict for years and never recall Buckley being quite that gross. I do remember his publishing a childishly nasty obit when Murray died: fortunately, he did allow a rebuttal by the much more human Florence King.

    Buckley was a hater: he hated an awful lot of people -- Ayn Rand, Pat Buchanan, the Birchers, Rothbard, and many, many others.

    And, as Paul Gottfried has shown, Buckley ruthlessly, falsely, and maliciously smeared the people he hated: as noted in my earlier post, Paul has made clear that Buckley made false accusations against the Birchers because they were not 100 percent on board with his Cold War insanity. (Was Buckley crazier than the Birchers? Oh, yes, he was, he really was!)

    I suppose the most shameful example of Buckley's contemptible behavior was the issue-length "In Search of Anti-Semistism" attack he launched in NR against Pat Buchanan.

    I knew Rothbard, and he just laughed about Buckley's bizarrely false attacks on him (Buckley just fantasized the weird idea that Rothbard was obsessed with lighthouses, for example: maybe it was Buckley's own fantasy that he was a real sailor that generated the other fantasy). But, Buckley's vicious slanders of Pat Buchanan must really have hurt Pat.

    Of course, Pat is a gentleman, unlike Herr Buckley, and so did not respond in kind.

    If there is a Hell, I am sure Buckley is having a very warm time!

    Didnt Buckley ideas change in his later years and for the worse? Perhaps the CIA had some influence on that?

    Some conspiracy websites claim he was Knights of Malta (since im not an insider, cant say).

    Catholic and CIA connection was at its highest after WW2 and during Reagan years.
    Today I see far more Liberal and Zionist influence.

    John Birch Society is strange, because apparently at the top there are Jewish finance,
    they like to employ gentiles including Catholics to give a idea they work for the middle class (true or not I dont know). Today they seem to support Zionism. Maybe you can explain more.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    polskijoe asked me:

    Didnt Buckley ideas change in his later years and for the worse? Perhaps the CIA had some influence on that?
     
    Well... if you read his columns in later years, he continued his pomposity and verbosity, but often seemed to be going nowhere. My guess is that his faculties were simply failing. Maybe he was just an old man trying to relive his youth (strangely, he was actually sold as an enfant terrible in the early 1950s, hard to believe for younger people who saw him simply as the tired, wrinkled face of one of the Establishment's favorite "conservatives").

    Once the Cold War was over, I think Buckley kind of lost his purpose for existence, and I would guess that at that point the CIA lost its interest in him. Also, by that time, "movement" conservatism (AKA "Conservatism, Inc.") had just obviously become a ripoff scheme for talentless youngsters (the "girly boys," as Ann Coulter dubbed them) like Jonah Goldberg (who got his job thanks to his mama Lucianne!) and Rich Lowry to make far more money than their meager talents justified. Perhaps Buckley retained enough sense of reality to see how pitiable it had all become.

    As for the Birchers and Zionism, I don't know. Most Americans support Zionism -- perhaps the explanation is as simple as that.
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  118. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    Buckley reviewed Rothbard’s published work negatively, pronouncing some of it comical and some of it ‘nauseating’.
     
    Citation please???

    I followed the Buckley-Rothbard conflict for years and never recall Buckley being quite that gross. I do remember his publishing a childishly nasty obit when Murray died: fortunately, he did allow a rebuttal by the much more human Florence King.

    Buckley was a hater: he hated an awful lot of people -- Ayn Rand, Pat Buchanan, the Birchers, Rothbard, and many, many others.

    And, as Paul Gottfried has shown, Buckley ruthlessly, falsely, and maliciously smeared the people he hated: as noted in my earlier post, Paul has made clear that Buckley made false accusations against the Birchers because they were not 100 percent on board with his Cold War insanity. (Was Buckley crazier than the Birchers? Oh, yes, he was, he really was!)

    I suppose the most shameful example of Buckley's contemptible behavior was the issue-length "In Search of Anti-Semistism" attack he launched in NR against Pat Buchanan.

    I knew Rothbard, and he just laughed about Buckley's bizarrely false attacks on him (Buckley just fantasized the weird idea that Rothbard was obsessed with lighthouses, for example: maybe it was Buckley's own fantasy that he was a real sailor that generated the other fantasy). But, Buckley's vicious slanders of Pat Buchanan must really have hurt Pat.

    Of course, Pat is a gentleman, unlike Herr Buckley, and so did not respond in kind.

    If there is a Hell, I am sure Buckley is having a very warm time!

    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard’s work is delineated. I’m not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review and I don’t think reviewing Reader’s Guide you could locate a contribution published after 1962 or thereabouts if there were even one. Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene. Quite the dead end.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    I’m not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review...
     
    Well, he was. He has written about it, in the book I linked to above (see, e.g.;, p.169) which you seem determined to avoid looking at.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard’s work is delineated.
     
    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    You are a fake and a fraud, Art the Denilaist, and we have documented that fact in this thread with links anyone can follow up if they care (I suspect everyone here already knows you are a fake and a fruad).

    Art the Denialist also wrote:

    Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene.
     
    Well, we have proven conclusively, with links anyone can check out, that you do not rate high when it comes to truth-telling. The prosecution rests its case.

    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.
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  119. @PhysicistDave
    To anyone still following Art the Denialist's little fantasy here:

    I think the Denialist's reference to Buckley finding something "nauseating" may have been Buckley's reaction to something Karl Hess, not Rothbard wrote. (but, hey, what do you expect of our favorite troll, Art the Denialist?)

    And, here is a very, very gentle rebuke to Buckley by the Jewish neocon Nathan Glazer pointing out that Buckley went after Buchanan simply because of:

    the split within conservative ranks over the gulf war. National Review, Mr. Buckley and many other conservatives supported the military action against Iraq. Others, including Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran, argued that it did not serve American interests but rather Israeli interests.
     
    Indeed.

    Professor Glazer was certainly no supporter of Pat Buchanan! But, unlike the evil Buckley, he could conceive of disagreeing with someone without libeling them.

    RIH, Bill Buckley.

    Buckley’s dismissal of Rothbard antedated the Gulf War by nearly 30 years. Buckley never libeled Buchanan or Sobran.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    Buckley’s dismissal of Rothbard antedated the Gulf War by nearly 30 years.
     
    Indeed. Did I ever say otherwise? What I have kept emphasizing is that, if you believe Frank Meyer (and the evidence points that way), then Buckley was set up in business by the CIA early in the Cold War, not the Gulf War.

    Are you aware that there is a difference between the Cold War and the Gulf War? (Maybe you aren't: we have proven conclusively that your grasp on reality is a bit weak.)

    Rothbard dissented from Buckley's Cold War insanity back in the 1950s, and Rothbard detailed all this in the section of the book I linked to earlier for your benefit. (You have not actually bothered to check out that link, have you? Facts are such annoying things for you denialists!)

    The quote I posted from Nathan Glazer said that Buckley went after "Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran" because of the Gulf War, which was true. Can you grasp this?? Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran," not Rothbard. See: different people are, like, different. Gotta try to keep things straight, Denialist.

    The Denialist also wrote:


    Buckley never libeled Buchanan or Sobran.
     
    Have you read Buckley's "In Search of Anti-Semistism": really nasty stuff, if slightly muffled by Buckley's obviously advancing senility.
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  120. @Art Deco
    Paul Wolfowitz was a student of Strauss,

    Paul Wolfowitz took two courses from Strauss during his undergraduate years.

    Strauss' airy philosophical concerns are rather remote from the world of day-to-day policymaking. The whole Strauss meme is stupid.

    http://www.ashokkarra.com/2013/03/briefly-noted-leo-strauss-on-german-nihilism/

    Strauss taught that liberalism in its modern form (which is oriented toward universal freedom as opposed to “ancient liberalism” which is oriented toward human excellence), contained within it an intrinsic tendency towards extreme relativism, which in turn led to two types of nihilism …In the belief that 20th century relativism, scientism, historicism, and nihilism were all implicated in the deterioration of modern society and philosophy, Strauss sought to uncover the philosophical pathways that had led to this situation. The resultant study led him to advocate a tentative return to classical political philosophy as a starting point for judging political action.[43]

    For Nietzsche, there is no objective order or structure in the world except what we give it. Penetrating the façades buttressing convictions, the nihilist discovers that all values are baseless …

    I am not sure how many courses of Martin Heidegger Strauss attended, but the Heidegger take on Nietzsche was surely the origin of neocon concern with providing these stories about the US being founded on some objective order or structure. Strauss’s influence on the neocons was very clear, Irving Kristol talked explicitly about nihilism. They thought the sixties was Weimar, homosexuality and all.

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    • Replies: @Sean
    Wohlstetter advocated US first use of tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a conventional offensive, something that Kissinger told Reagan never to do. Once you go nuclear you go nuclear for good and wars cannot be fought with nukes. Wohlstetter advocated the US dominating the world and in the 60 sbe became worried about nukes in the Middle East. (Israel which had nukes was attacked conventionally by nonnuclear Arab countries in 1973 of course). Under Rumsfeld in the Ford administration brought Robert Goldwin (yet another a devoted former student of Strauss) with a loathing of liberal relativism (nihilism). Goldwin disliked overspecializing (the CIA were specialists) Kristol had the best access, and Bloom and Jaffa both tried to get in on the act.

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.
     

    One reason why Strauss is in the news is because so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list, but other Straussians in or around the administration include Abram Shulsky,
     
    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss's thought and intelligence analysis (of Iran!); he went on to scare monger over Saddam and justify an attack on Iraq. Wohlstetter's wife Roberta wrote an amateurish study of Pearl Harbour that influenced Rumsfeld in pressing for an attack on Iraq. These people are not professionals in intelligence analysis but since Wohlstetter invented a "Missle Gap" for JFK they are the ones who count. Still, the upcoming attack on Iran and Israel's expulsion of the West Bank arabs under cover of the ensuing conflict will be a good thing.
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  121. Heidegger take on Nietzsche was surely the origin of neocon concern with providing these stories about the US being founded on some objective order or structure. Strauss’s influence on the neocons was very clear, Irving Kristol talked explicitly about nihilism. They thought the sixties was Weimar, homosexuality and all.

    This is just too silly. What was notable about the academics and opinion journalists who gathered around Kristol, Podhoretz et al was their concern with topical questions. Kristol was an admirer of Adam Smith. He was also a critic of license. So’s Donald Wildmon, who likely wouldn’t know Nietzche from tiddlywinks.

    Again, Norman Podhoretz and Joseph Epstein were literary critics by original vocation. Midge Decter was an editor at Basic Books. Peter Berger and Seymour Martin Lipset were sociologists. Sidney Hook was a philosopher. He was an established academic before Strauss arrived in the United States and would have read him and corresponded with him as a peer, not a pupil.

    George Nash published a helpful history on post-war conservative discourse. There’s a section on Strauss. There are sections on a score of others. This man simply was not the skeleton key you’re all making him out to have been.

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    • Agree: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @Sean
    Wohlstetter advocated US first use of tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a conventional offensive, something that Kissinger told Reagan never to do. Once you go nuclear you go nuclear for good and wars cannot be fought with nukes. Wohlstetter advocated the US dominating the world and in the 60 he became worried about nukes in the Middle East. (Israel which had nukes was attacked conventionally by nonnuclear Arab countries in 1973 of course). Under Rumsfeld in the Ford administration brought Robert Goldwin (yet another a devoted former student of Strauss) with a loathing of liberal relativism (nihilism). Goldwin disliked overspecializing (the CIA were specialists) Kristol had the best access, and Bloom and Jaffa both tried to get in on the act.

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.
     

    One reason why Strauss is in the news is because so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list, but other Straussians in or around the administration include Abram Shulsky,
     
    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss's thought and intelligence analysis (of Iran!); he went on to scare monger over Saddam and justify an attack on Iraq. Wohlstetter's wife Roberta wrote an amateurish study of Pearl Harbour that influenced Rumsfeld in pressing for an attack on Iraq. These people are not professionals in intelligence analysis but since Wohlstetter invented a "Missle Gap" for JFK they are the ones who count. Still, the upcoming US attack on Iran and Israel's expulsion of the West Bank Arabs under cover of the ensuing conflict will be a very good thing. I can hardly wait.
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  122. @Sean
    http://www.ashokkarra.com/2013/03/briefly-noted-leo-strauss-on-german-nihilism/

    Strauss taught that liberalism in its modern form (which is oriented toward universal freedom as opposed to "ancient liberalism" which is oriented toward human excellence), contained within it an intrinsic tendency towards extreme relativism, which in turn led to two types of nihilism ...In the belief that 20th century relativism, scientism, historicism, and nihilism were all implicated in the deterioration of modern society and philosophy, Strauss sought to uncover the philosophical pathways that had led to this situation. The resultant study led him to advocate a tentative return to classical political philosophy as a starting point for judging political action.[43]
     

    For Nietzsche, there is no objective order or structure in the world except what we give it. Penetrating the façades buttressing convictions, the nihilist discovers that all values are baseless ...
     
    I am not sure how many courses of Martin Heidegger Strauss attended, but the Heidegger take on Nietzsche was surely the origin of neocon concern with providing these stories about the US being founded on some objective order or structure. Strauss's influence on the neocons was very clear, Irving Kristol talked explicitly about nihilism. They thought the sixties was Weimar, homosexuality and all.

    Wohlstetter advocated US first use of tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a conventional offensive, something that Kissinger told Reagan never to do. Once you go nuclear you go nuclear for good and wars cannot be fought with nukes. Wohlstetter advocated the US dominating the world and in the 60 sbe became worried about nukes in the Middle East. (Israel which had nukes was attacked conventionally by nonnuclear Arab countries in 1973 of course). Under Rumsfeld in the Ford administration brought Robert Goldwin (yet another a devoted former student of Strauss) with a loathing of liberal relativism (nihilism). Goldwin disliked overspecializing (the CIA were specialists) Kristol had the best access, and Bloom and Jaffa both tried to get in on the act.

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.

    One reason why Strauss is in the news is because so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list, but other Straussians in or around the administration include Abram Shulsky,

    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss’s thought and intelligence analysis (of Iran!); he went on to scare monger over Saddam and justify an attack on Iraq. Wohlstetter’s wife Roberta wrote an amateurish study of Pearl Harbour that influenced Rumsfeld in pressing for an attack on Iraq. These people are not professionals in intelligence analysis but since Wohlstetter invented a “Missle Gap” for JFK they are the ones who count. Still, the upcoming attack on Iran and Israel’s expulsion of the West Bank arabs under cover of the ensuing conflict will be a good thing.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss’s thought and intelligence analysis

    This is just bizarre. Why not write about Susan Sontag's influence on intelligence work? It would be no less random.


    so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list,

    Wolfowitz took two courses from Strauss during the latter's last years at the University of Chicago. That's it. Strauss then decamped to St. John's College, not a destination for a worldly man. Wolfowitz dissertation was in the section of political science once called 'national security studies'. Strauss never wrote a thing about that subject.
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  123. @Art Deco
    Heidegger take on Nietzsche was surely the origin of neocon concern with providing these stories about the US being founded on some objective order or structure. Strauss’s influence on the neocons was very clear, Irving Kristol talked explicitly about nihilism. They thought the sixties was Weimar, homosexuality and all.

    This is just too silly. What was notable about the academics and opinion journalists who gathered around Kristol, Podhoretz et al was their concern with topical questions. Kristol was an admirer of Adam Smith. He was also a critic of license. So's Donald Wildmon, who likely wouldn't know Nietzche from tiddlywinks.

    Again, Norman Podhoretz and Joseph Epstein were literary critics by original vocation. Midge Decter was an editor at Basic Books. Peter Berger and Seymour Martin Lipset were sociologists. Sidney Hook was a philosopher. He was an established academic before Strauss arrived in the United States and would have read him and corresponded with him as a peer, not a pupil.

    George Nash published a helpful history on post-war conservative discourse. There's a section on Strauss. There are sections on a score of others. This man simply was not the skeleton key you're all making him out to have been.

    Wohlstetter advocated US first use of tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a conventional offensive, something that Kissinger told Reagan never to do. Once you go nuclear you go nuclear for good and wars cannot be fought with nukes. Wohlstetter advocated the US dominating the world and in the 60 he became worried about nukes in the Middle East. (Israel which had nukes was attacked conventionally by nonnuclear Arab countries in 1973 of course). Under Rumsfeld in the Ford administration brought Robert Goldwin (yet another a devoted former student of Strauss) with a loathing of liberal relativism (nihilism). Goldwin disliked overspecializing (the CIA were specialists) Kristol had the best access, and Bloom and Jaffa both tried to get in on the act.

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.

    One reason why Strauss is in the news is because so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list, but other Straussians in or around the administration include Abram Shulsky,

    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss’s thought and intelligence analysis (of Iran!); he went on to scare monger over Saddam and justify an attack on Iraq. Wohlstetter’s wife Roberta wrote an amateurish study of Pearl Harbour that influenced Rumsfeld in pressing for an attack on Iraq. These people are not professionals in intelligence analysis but since Wohlstetter invented a “Missle Gap” for JFK they are the ones who count. Still, the upcoming US attack on Iran and Israel’s expulsion of the West Bank Arabs under cover of the ensuing conflict will be a very good thing. I can hardly wait.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Wohlstetter was Wohlstetter and Strauss was Strauss.

    Saul Bellow also taught at the University of Chicago at that time. He was actually a personal friend of Joseph Epstein. Come to think of it, he team taught courses with Allan Bloom. Are we going to get a mini-essay from you on how the author of Augie March shaped the Near Eastern bureau at the State department?
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  124. @guest
    "It was written to justify revolution"

    Justify, not exactly. Persuade, yes. The document is political rhetoric meant to convince people the cause of separation was just.

    Revolutionary, hardly. Only some small part would view it that way. The idea was to take the existing political structures, founded under the empire, and give them independence, with the traditional rights of Englishmen respected. Not to remake the social order, or anything.

    If you want to call it revolution according to your own conception of that term, okay. Not so much in the Current Year connotations of "revolution."

    "Secession" is an appropriate term for it.

    “It was written to justify revolution”

    Justify, not exactly. Persuade, yes. The document is political rhetoric meant to convince people the cause of separation was just.

    See the bolded. There is a connection.

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    • Replies: @guest
    Thanks, but "justify" usually means to prove something is reasonable. That's in the realm of dialectic.

    To say something's "just" means it's morally right.

    Convincing people that a cause is just through rhetoric isn't the same thing as justifying it.

    Those are my hairs, and I'm splitting them
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  125. @Art Deco
    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard's work is delineated. I'm not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review and I don't think reviewing Reader's Guide you could locate a contribution published after 1962 or thereabouts if there were even one. Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene. Quite the dead end.

    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    I’m not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review…

    Well, he was. He has written about it, in the book I linked to above (see, e.g.;, p.169) which you seem determined to avoid looking at.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard’s work is delineated.

    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    You are a fake and a fraud, Art the Denilaist, and we have documented that fact in this thread with links anyone can follow up if they care (I suspect everyone here already knows you are a fake and a fruad).

    Art the Denialist also wrote:

    Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene.

    Well, we have proven conclusively, with links anyone can check out, that you do not rate high when it comes to truth-telling. The prosecution rests its case.

    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

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    • Replies: @Anon
    "Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard."

    Ouch. Deco gets slammed again.
    , @Art Deco
    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    No, it was aimed at Rothbard, and it concerned Rothbard's endorsement of the work of revisionist historians of the Cold War.
    , @Art Deco
    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    You're welcome to examine some of Rothbard's contributions to Chronicles post 1989, including the one where he endorses freebooting by police officers. (Pretty jarring for a man who once compared J. Edgar Hoover to Laverenty Beria). You're also free to read this brief commentary on the problems with Austrian economics.


    http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/bcaplan/whyaust.htm


    (I think Caplan's rejection of quantitative methods is ill judged, and cannot be bothered with his research output, btw).

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  126. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    I’m not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review...
     
    Well, he was. He has written about it, in the book I linked to above (see, e.g.;, p.169) which you seem determined to avoid looking at.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard’s work is delineated.
     
    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    You are a fake and a fraud, Art the Denilaist, and we have documented that fact in this thread with links anyone can follow up if they care (I suspect everyone here already knows you are a fake and a fruad).

    Art the Denialist also wrote:

    Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene.
     
    Well, we have proven conclusively, with links anyone can check out, that you do not rate high when it comes to truth-telling. The prosecution rests its case.

    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    “Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.”

    Ouch. Deco gets slammed again.

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    • Replies: @Desiderius

    Deco gets slammed again.
     
    Not the first time. A little humility would go a long way.
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  127. @Art Deco
    Art Deco enters dead threads from days ago

    Find one.

    Okay how about every single time I have ever seen you, to include this one, which was started Dec 30 and has your reply at Jan 2? If you look at iSteve comment threads past a certain threshold, it’s just Art talking to himself about how everyone is not only wrong but intolerably stupid.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Okay how about every single time I have ever seen you, to include this one, which was started Dec 30 and has your reply at Jan 2?

    Strange as it may seem to you, some people continue to discuss things for a few days, and I register a reply to those comments. There are comments on this thread by various participants stamped 31 December, 1 January, and 2 January. It wouldn't have taken you more than a few seconds to scan the thread and see that.
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  128. @PhysicistDave
    J. Ross wisely wrote to me:

    Do not argue with Art Deco.
    Art Deco is part of a group of known trolls, what’s interesting about him is that whereas Corvinus and Duck have facile non-arguments and Yan Shen likes to hear himself babble, they’re sincere and reactive:
     
    Yeah, you're no doubt right. But sometimes I like responding to the trolls because it gives me a chance to post some facts that others may find useful or interesting, even though our pal Art the Denialist obviously is not interested in mere mundane facts.

    Yeah, you’re no doubt right.

    No, he’s mistaken.

    AD is antisocial, but he’s not a troll.

    He’s also more often than not a valuable contributor, both as devil’s advocate and cross-examiner of comfortable arguments.

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  129. @Anon
    "Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard."

    Ouch. Deco gets slammed again.

    Deco gets slammed again.

    Not the first time. A little humility would go a long way.

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  130. @ben tillman

    “It was written to justify revolution”

    Justify, not exactly. Persuade, yes. The document is political rhetoric meant to convince people the cause of separation was just.
     
    See the bolded. There is a connection.

    Thanks, but “justify” usually means to prove something is reasonable. That’s in the realm of dialectic.

    To say something’s “just” means it’s morally right.

    Convincing people that a cause is just through rhetoric isn’t the same thing as justifying it.

    Those are my hairs, and I’m splitting them

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  131. @polskijoe
    Didnt Buckley ideas change in his later years and for the worse? Perhaps the CIA had some influence on that?

    Some conspiracy websites claim he was Knights of Malta (since im not an insider, cant say).

    Catholic and CIA connection was at its highest after WW2 and during Reagan years.
    Today I see far more Liberal and Zionist influence.

    John Birch Society is strange, because apparently at the top there are Jewish finance,
    they like to employ gentiles including Catholics to give a idea they work for the middle class (true or not I dont know). Today they seem to support Zionism. Maybe you can explain more.

    polskijoe asked me:

    Didnt Buckley ideas change in his later years and for the worse? Perhaps the CIA had some influence on that?

    Well… if you read his columns in later years, he continued his pomposity and verbosity, but often seemed to be going nowhere. My guess is that his faculties were simply failing. Maybe he was just an old man trying to relive his youth (strangely, he was actually sold as an enfant terrible in the early 1950s, hard to believe for younger people who saw him simply as the tired, wrinkled face of one of the Establishment’s favorite “conservatives”).

    Once the Cold War was over, I think Buckley kind of lost his purpose for existence, and I would guess that at that point the CIA lost its interest in him. Also, by that time, “movement” conservatism (AKA “Conservatism, Inc.”) had just obviously become a ripoff scheme for talentless youngsters (the “girly boys,” as Ann Coulter dubbed them) like Jonah Goldberg (who got his job thanks to his mama Lucianne!) and Rich Lowry to make far more money than their meager talents justified. Perhaps Buckley retained enough sense of reality to see how pitiable it had all become.

    As for the Birchers and Zionism, I don’t know. Most Americans support Zionism — perhaps the explanation is as simple as that.

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  132. @Art Deco
    Buckley's dismissal of Rothbard antedated the Gulf War by nearly 30 years. Buckley never libeled Buchanan or Sobran.

    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    Buckley’s dismissal of Rothbard antedated the Gulf War by nearly 30 years.

    Indeed. Did I ever say otherwise? What I have kept emphasizing is that, if you believe Frank Meyer (and the evidence points that way), then Buckley was set up in business by the CIA early in the Cold War, not the Gulf War.

    Are you aware that there is a difference between the Cold War and the Gulf War? (Maybe you aren’t: we have proven conclusively that your grasp on reality is a bit weak.)

    Rothbard dissented from Buckley’s Cold War insanity back in the 1950s, and Rothbard detailed all this in the section of the book I linked to earlier for your benefit. (You have not actually bothered to check out that link, have you? Facts are such annoying things for you denialists!)

    The quote I posted from Nathan Glazer said that Buckley went after “Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran” because of the Gulf War, which was true. Can you grasp this?? Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Sobran,” not Rothbard. See: different people are, like, different. Gotta try to keep things straight, Denialist.

    The Denialist also wrote:

    Buckley never libeled Buchanan or Sobran.

    Have you read Buckley’s “In Search of Anti-Semistism”: really nasty stuff, if slightly muffled by Buckley’s obviously advancing senility.

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  133. @Sean
    Wohlstetter advocated US first use of tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a conventional offensive, something that Kissinger told Reagan never to do. Once you go nuclear you go nuclear for good and wars cannot be fought with nukes. Wohlstetter advocated the US dominating the world and in the 60 sbe became worried about nukes in the Middle East. (Israel which had nukes was attacked conventionally by nonnuclear Arab countries in 1973 of course). Under Rumsfeld in the Ford administration brought Robert Goldwin (yet another a devoted former student of Strauss) with a loathing of liberal relativism (nihilism). Goldwin disliked overspecializing (the CIA were specialists) Kristol had the best access, and Bloom and Jaffa both tried to get in on the act.

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.
     

    One reason why Strauss is in the news is because so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list, but other Straussians in or around the administration include Abram Shulsky,
     
    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss's thought and intelligence analysis (of Iran!); he went on to scare monger over Saddam and justify an attack on Iraq. Wohlstetter's wife Roberta wrote an amateurish study of Pearl Harbour that influenced Rumsfeld in pressing for an attack on Iraq. These people are not professionals in intelligence analysis but since Wohlstetter invented a "Missle Gap" for JFK they are the ones who count. Still, the upcoming attack on Iran and Israel's expulsion of the West Bank arabs under cover of the ensuing conflict will be a good thing.

    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss’s thought and intelligence analysis

    This is just bizarre. Why not write about Susan Sontag’s influence on intelligence work? It would be no less random.

    so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list,

    Wolfowitz took two courses from Strauss during the latter’s last years at the University of Chicago. That’s it. Strauss then decamped to St. John’s College, not a destination for a worldly man. Wolfowitz dissertation was in the section of political science once called ‘national security studies’. Strauss never wrote a thing about that subject.

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  134. @J.Ross
    Okay how about every single time I have ever seen you, to include this one, which was started Dec 30 and has your reply at Jan 2? If you look at iSteve comment threads past a certain threshold, it's just Art talking to himself about how everyone is not only wrong but intolerably stupid.

    Okay how about every single time I have ever seen you, to include this one, which was started Dec 30 and has your reply at Jan 2?

    Strange as it may seem to you, some people continue to discuss things for a few days, and I register a reply to those comments. There are comments on this thread by various participants stamped 31 December, 1 January, and 2 January. It wouldn’t have taken you more than a few seconds to scan the thread and see that.

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  135. @Sean
    Wohlstetter advocated US first use of tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a conventional offensive, something that Kissinger told Reagan never to do. Once you go nuclear you go nuclear for good and wars cannot be fought with nukes. Wohlstetter advocated the US dominating the world and in the 60 he became worried about nukes in the Middle East. (Israel which had nukes was attacked conventionally by nonnuclear Arab countries in 1973 of course). Under Rumsfeld in the Ford administration brought Robert Goldwin (yet another a devoted former student of Strauss) with a loathing of liberal relativism (nihilism). Goldwin disliked overspecializing (the CIA were specialists) Kristol had the best access, and Bloom and Jaffa both tried to get in on the act.

    Again, Wohlstetter was a figure quite dissimilar to Strauss. I think they both taught at the University of Chicago for a number of years. That’s the connection between them.
     

    One reason why Strauss is in the news is because so many of his admirers are now important figures in conservative Washington. Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence, invariably tops the list, but other Straussians in or around the administration include Abram Shulsky,
     
    Shulsky, wrote about the connection between Strauss's thought and intelligence analysis (of Iran!); he went on to scare monger over Saddam and justify an attack on Iraq. Wohlstetter's wife Roberta wrote an amateurish study of Pearl Harbour that influenced Rumsfeld in pressing for an attack on Iraq. These people are not professionals in intelligence analysis but since Wohlstetter invented a "Missle Gap" for JFK they are the ones who count. Still, the upcoming US attack on Iran and Israel's expulsion of the West Bank Arabs under cover of the ensuing conflict will be a very good thing. I can hardly wait.

    Wohlstetter was Wohlstetter and Strauss was Strauss.

    Saul Bellow also taught at the University of Chicago at that time. He was actually a personal friend of Joseph Epstein. Come to think of it, he team taught courses with Allan Bloom. Are we going to get a mini-essay from you on how the author of Augie March shaped the Near Eastern bureau at the State department?

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    • Replies: @Sean

    Are we going to get a mini-essay from you on how the author of Augie March shaped the Near Eastern bureau at the State department?
     
    No, but only because they didn't.

    Both Wohlstetter's and Strauss's students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran). Moreover an extraordinary number of the students of both got into positions where they had the ear of the president, and were able to cooperatively bring about their desired outcome.

    The intellectual basis of US conservatism is being said to be fought out between more or less two wings of Straussianism, yet his teaching is opaque to outsiders (those without the hadiths and inner party texts that devotees circulate privately). Strauss sometimes seemed to be saying that there is a rank of types, and the ideas do not matter very much in the real world. For example he noted that the student of Socrates who had the greatest success as a commander was the one who didn't hesitate to punish.

    James Baldwin recalled in the Church he was brought up in it was implicit, all but actually said, that those to be saved were black. Straussianism is something similar I think.
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  136. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    I’m not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review...
     
    Well, he was. He has written about it, in the book I linked to above (see, e.g.;, p.169) which you seem determined to avoid looking at.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard’s work is delineated.
     
    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    You are a fake and a fraud, Art the Denilaist, and we have documented that fact in this thread with links anyone can follow up if they care (I suspect everyone here already knows you are a fake and a fruad).

    Art the Denialist also wrote:

    Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene.
     
    Well, we have proven conclusively, with links anyone can check out, that you do not rate high when it comes to truth-telling. The prosecution rests its case.

    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    No, it was aimed at Rothbard, and it concerned Rothbard’s endorsement of the work of revisionist historians of the Cold War.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    Art the Pathoglical Liar wrote to me:

    No, it was aimed at Rothbard, and it concerned Rothbard’s endorsement of the work of revisionist historians of the Cold War.
     
    Now, we have you. You are a pathological liar.

    I urge anyone who doubts this to read the link I provided above: here again is the link from the book you yourself cited. What Nash actually said from the book you yourself cited was:

    More "nauseating" to Buckley was Karl Hess's statement...
     
    See: "Karl Hess" not Rothbard.

    (To anyone too lazy to click the link and read the page, Nash was referring to a joke Karl Hess made comparing J. Edgar Hoover to the head of the Soviet secret police Lavrentiy Beria. Whether you like the joke or are scandalized by the joke -- or think it wasn't a joke -- according to Nash, who is Art's source, the joke was Hess's, not Rothbard's. Every source I have seen on this -- the incident is well-known -- agrees with Nash, not with Art the Pathological Liar.)

    You want us to believe you are not a pathological liar?? Fine, show us where else in this book Nash claimed that Buckley referred to Rothbard, not Karl Hess, as "nauseating."

    Otherwise, you have just proven yourself to be a thuggish pathological liar.

    Anyone can use the search function in the link to the book I have provided on the word "nauseating": anyone who wants to bother now can prove to themselves that you are a pathological liar.

    Like that thug Buckley.

    (The same section of Nash's book reiterates Buckley's pathological obsession with lighthouses, probably due to Buckley's obsession about pretending to be a sailor.)

    Why do you lie like this?

    Do you make a living somehow off the lies of "Conservatism, Inc."?

    Or are you one of those people who just give away their integrity for free?

    Why on earth do you bother to lie when it is so easy to show any sane person that you are lying?
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  137. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Denialist wrote to me:

    I’m not sure Rothbard was ever a contributor to National Review...
     
    Well, he was. He has written about it, in the book I linked to above (see, e.g.;, p.169) which you seem determined to avoid looking at.

    Art the Denialist also wrote to me:

    As indicated, George Nash published a book in 1976 wherein the reaction of Buckley to Rothbard’s work is delineated.
     
    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    You are a fake and a fraud, Art the Denilaist, and we have documented that fact in this thread with links anyone can follow up if they care (I suspect everyone here already knows you are a fake and a fruad).

    Art the Denialist also wrote:

    Rothbard was a peddler of fringe economics, extreme isolationism, and quite erratic judgments about the domestic scene.
     
    Well, we have proven conclusively, with links anyone can check out, that you do not rate high when it comes to truth-telling. The prosecution rests its case.

    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    You’re welcome to examine some of Rothbard’s contributions to Chronicles post 1989, including the one where he endorses freebooting by police officers. (Pretty jarring for a man who once compared J. Edgar Hoover to Laverenty Beria). You’re also free to read this brief commentary on the problems with Austrian economics.

    http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/bcaplan/whyaust.htm

    (I think Caplan’s rejection of quantitative methods is ill judged, and cannot be bothered with his research output, btw).

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    • Replies: @Sean

    Why not write about Susan Sontag’s influence on intelligence work?
     
    Because she didn't serve as Director of the (Paul Wolfowitz-created) Office of Special Plans.
    , @PhysicistDave
    Art the Pathological Liar wrote:

    You’re welcome to examine some of Rothbard’s contributions to Chronicles post 1989, including the one where he endorses freebooting by police officers. (Pretty jarring for a man who once compared J. Edgar Hoover to Laverenty Beria).
     
    Ah, okay, the lying from you never ends,, does it? Again, anyone can check the link in my immediately preceding post to see that the comparison was due to Karl Hess, according to the source you yourself cite.
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  138. @Art Deco
    Wohlstetter was Wohlstetter and Strauss was Strauss.

    Saul Bellow also taught at the University of Chicago at that time. He was actually a personal friend of Joseph Epstein. Come to think of it, he team taught courses with Allan Bloom. Are we going to get a mini-essay from you on how the author of Augie March shaped the Near Eastern bureau at the State department?

    Are we going to get a mini-essay from you on how the author of Augie March shaped the Near Eastern bureau at the State department?

    No, but only because they didn’t.

    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran). Moreover an extraordinary number of the students of both got into positions where they had the ear of the president, and were able to cooperatively bring about their desired outcome.

    The intellectual basis of US conservatism is being said to be fought out between more or less two wings of Straussianism, yet his teaching is opaque to outsiders (those without the hadiths and inner party texts that devotees circulate privately). Strauss sometimes seemed to be saying that there is a rank of types, and the ideas do not matter very much in the real world. For example he noted that the student of Socrates who had the greatest success as a commander was the one who didn’t hesitate to punish.

    James Baldwin recalled in the Church he was brought up in it was implicit, all but actually said, that those to be saved were black. Straussianism is something similar I think.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).

    Um, no. One of Wohlstetter's students took two courses from Strauss.

    Strauss had an academic post in the Department of Political Science, but he was a philosopher with a particular interest in ancient philosophy. People studied with Strauss because they were interested in Vico or Hobbes, not international relations or military technology. Someone of an age to have had him as a dissertation supervisor at the New School or at the University of Chicago would have been at least 60 in 2002. Walter Berns was 83, Harry Jaffa was 84, Allan Bloom was dead, Seth Bernardete was dead, Hadley Arkes was past 60 and not known for any writings on foreign policy, Stanley Rosen was past 70 and his oeuvre was limited to philosophical subjects, etc. etc. The comptroller at the Claremont Colleges may have had opinions about the Iraq War as well. These weren't a function of his profession.
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  139. @Art Deco
    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    You're welcome to examine some of Rothbard's contributions to Chronicles post 1989, including the one where he endorses freebooting by police officers. (Pretty jarring for a man who once compared J. Edgar Hoover to Laverenty Beria). You're also free to read this brief commentary on the problems with Austrian economics.


    http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/bcaplan/whyaust.htm


    (I think Caplan's rejection of quantitative methods is ill judged, and cannot be bothered with his research output, btw).

    Why not write about Susan Sontag’s influence on intelligence work?

    Because she didn’t serve as Director of the (Paul Wolfowitz-created) Office of Special Plans.

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  140. Have you read Buckley’s “In Search of Anti-Semistism”: really nasty stuff, if slightly muffled by Buckley’s obviously advancing senility.

    The senile Buckley lived another 16 years and published 15 original works in that time, fiction and non-fiction (and some anthologies of previously published material as well). He also continued to host a discussion show on PBS for about 1/2 that time.

    I think Peter Brimelow published 3 books in that time.

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  141. @Sean

    Are we going to get a mini-essay from you on how the author of Augie March shaped the Near Eastern bureau at the State department?
     
    No, but only because they didn't.

    Both Wohlstetter's and Strauss's students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran). Moreover an extraordinary number of the students of both got into positions where they had the ear of the president, and were able to cooperatively bring about their desired outcome.

    The intellectual basis of US conservatism is being said to be fought out between more or less two wings of Straussianism, yet his teaching is opaque to outsiders (those without the hadiths and inner party texts that devotees circulate privately). Strauss sometimes seemed to be saying that there is a rank of types, and the ideas do not matter very much in the real world. For example he noted that the student of Socrates who had the greatest success as a commander was the one who didn't hesitate to punish.

    James Baldwin recalled in the Church he was brought up in it was implicit, all but actually said, that those to be saved were black. Straussianism is something similar I think.

    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).

    Um, no. One of Wohlstetter’s students took two courses from Strauss.

    Strauss had an academic post in the Department of Political Science, but he was a philosopher with a particular interest in ancient philosophy. People studied with Strauss because they were interested in Vico or Hobbes, not international relations or military technology. Someone of an age to have had him as a dissertation supervisor at the New School or at the University of Chicago would have been at least 60 in 2002. Walter Berns was 83, Harry Jaffa was 84, Allan Bloom was dead, Seth Bernardete was dead, Hadley Arkes was past 60 and not known for any writings on foreign policy, Stanley Rosen was past 70 and his oeuvre was limited to philosophical subjects, etc. etc. The comptroller at the Claremont Colleges may have had opinions about the Iraq War as well. These weren’t a function of his profession.

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    • Replies: @Sean

    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).
     
    I thought that meant what I intended to convey. Namely each was independent of one another and so it is strange their two separate schools of thought arrived in Bush the Younger's administration with the same counter-intuitive idea of attacking Iraq. It's like Mrs Wohlstetter writing a book that influences Donald Rumsfeld to advocate an attack on Iraq, and Mrs Podhoretz writes a book about Rumsfeld being correct to be so influenced.

    Again, in his encyclopedia article on Machiavelli, Strauss brought up Xenophon being the most successful as a commander of Socrates students because (unlike Proxenos) he could punish. Moreover, if people studied with Strauss not because they were interested in international relations or military technology, why was he discussing the friend-or-foe reductionist Carl Schmitt? Strauss critiquing Schmitt:-


    Agreement at all costs is possible only as agreement at the cost of the meaning of human life; for agreement at all costs is possible only if man has relinquished asking the question of what is right; and if man relinquishes that question, he relinquishes being a man. [...] Technology always remains as an instrument and a weapon, and precisely because technology serves everyone, it is not neutral.
     
    Strauss's published work is deliberately abstruse and Straussians have what are in effect secret texts and sayings of Strauss that are only available to his admirers, who can thus always claim he is being misinterpreted by outsiders. He was not a normal academic philosopher.
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  142. @Art Deco
    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).

    Um, no. One of Wohlstetter's students took two courses from Strauss.

    Strauss had an academic post in the Department of Political Science, but he was a philosopher with a particular interest in ancient philosophy. People studied with Strauss because they were interested in Vico or Hobbes, not international relations or military technology. Someone of an age to have had him as a dissertation supervisor at the New School or at the University of Chicago would have been at least 60 in 2002. Walter Berns was 83, Harry Jaffa was 84, Allan Bloom was dead, Seth Bernardete was dead, Hadley Arkes was past 60 and not known for any writings on foreign policy, Stanley Rosen was past 70 and his oeuvre was limited to philosophical subjects, etc. etc. The comptroller at the Claremont Colleges may have had opinions about the Iraq War as well. These weren't a function of his profession.

    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).

    I thought that meant what I intended to convey. Namely each was independent of one another and so it is strange their two separate schools of thought arrived in Bush the Younger’s administration with the same counter-intuitive idea of attacking Iraq. It’s like Mrs Wohlstetter writing a book that influences Donald Rumsfeld to advocate an attack on Iraq, and Mrs Podhoretz writes a book about Rumsfeld being correct to be so influenced.

    Again, in his encyclopedia article on Machiavelli, Strauss brought up Xenophon being the most successful as a commander of Socrates students because (unlike Proxenos) he could punish. Moreover, if people studied with Strauss not because they were interested in international relations or military technology, why was he discussing the friend-or-foe reductionist Carl Schmitt? Strauss critiquing Schmitt:-

    Agreement at all costs is possible only as agreement at the cost of the meaning of human life; for agreement at all costs is possible only if man has relinquished asking the question of what is right; and if man relinquishes that question, he relinquishes being a man. [...] Technology always remains as an instrument and a weapon, and precisely because technology serves everyone, it is not neutral.

    Strauss’s published work is deliberately abstruse and Straussians have what are in effect secret texts and sayings of Strauss that are only available to his admirers, who can thus always claim he is being misinterpreted by outsiders. He was not a normal academic philosopher.

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    • Replies: @Art Deco
    You've not named a single student of Strauss (much less a collection of them) who had a particular view of the Iraq War which was derived from his history as a student of Strauss.
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  143. @Sean

    Both Wohlstetter’s and Strauss’s students converged on certain views about the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).
     
    I thought that meant what I intended to convey. Namely each was independent of one another and so it is strange their two separate schools of thought arrived in Bush the Younger's administration with the same counter-intuitive idea of attacking Iraq. It's like Mrs Wohlstetter writing a book that influences Donald Rumsfeld to advocate an attack on Iraq, and Mrs Podhoretz writes a book about Rumsfeld being correct to be so influenced.

    Again, in his encyclopedia article on Machiavelli, Strauss brought up Xenophon being the most successful as a commander of Socrates students because (unlike Proxenos) he could punish. Moreover, if people studied with Strauss not because they were interested in international relations or military technology, why was he discussing the friend-or-foe reductionist Carl Schmitt? Strauss critiquing Schmitt:-


    Agreement at all costs is possible only as agreement at the cost of the meaning of human life; for agreement at all costs is possible only if man has relinquished asking the question of what is right; and if man relinquishes that question, he relinquishes being a man. [...] Technology always remains as an instrument and a weapon, and precisely because technology serves everyone, it is not neutral.
     
    Strauss's published work is deliberately abstruse and Straussians have what are in effect secret texts and sayings of Strauss that are only available to his admirers, who can thus always claim he is being misinterpreted by outsiders. He was not a normal academic philosopher.

    You’ve not named a single student of Strauss (much less a collection of them) who had a particular view of the Iraq War which was derived from his history as a student of Strauss.

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    • Replies: @Sean
    Shulsky is an expert on Strauss, and has a page to himself on the University of Chicago Leo Strauss Center website https://leostrausscenter.uchicago.edu/node/161

    Again, Shulsky explicitly wrote of the influence that Leo Strauss had on his methodology https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/files/leo_strauss_and_the_world_of_intelligence.pdf Basically it says the conventional professional intelligence experts are too trusting of countries like Iran. As for Iraq:-

    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/05/12/selective-intelligence

    The director of the Special Plans operation is Abram Shulsky, a scholarly expert in the works of the political philosopher Leo Strauss. Shulsky has been quietly working on intelligence and foreign-policy issues for three decades; he was on the staff of the Senate Intelligence Com-mittee in the early nineteen-eighties and served in the Pentagon under Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Perle during the Reagan Administration, after which he joined the Rand Corporation [...] Another Strauss critic, Stephen Holmes, a law professor at New York University, put the Straussians’ position this way: “They believe that your enemy is deceiving you, and you have to pretend to agree, but secretly you follow your own views.” Holmes added, “The whole story is complicated by Strauss’s idea—actually Plato’s—that philosophers need to tell noble lies not only to the people at large but also to powerful politicians.”
    When I asked one of Strauss’s staunchest defenders, Joseph Cropsey, professor emeritus of political science at Chicago, about the use of Strauss’s views in the area of policymaking, he told me that common sense alone suggested that a certain amount of deception is essential in government. “That people in government have to be discreet in what they say publicly is so obvious—‘If I tell you the truth I can’t but help the enemy.’ ” But there is nothing in Strauss’s work, he added, that “favors preëmptive action. What it favors is prudence and sound judgment. If you could have got rid of Hitler in the nineteen-thirties, who’s not going to be in favor of that? You don’t need Strauss to reach that conclusion.”
     
    In the above linked paper of Shulsky on Strauss and intelligence, Shulsky wrote

    Leo Strauss and the World of Intelligence
    (By Which We Do Not Mean Nous)
    Gary J. Schmitt and Abram N. Shulsky
    The topic must appear at first as a very strange one: what possible connection could there be between the tumultuous world of spies and snooping paraphernalia, on the one hand, and the
    quiet life of scholarship and immersion in ancient texts, on the other? However, intelligence isn't only involved with espionage and whiz-bang gadgetry; a large part of it deals with the patient
    piecing together of bits of information to yield the outlines of the larger picture. When one considers that this effort, called "analysis," often focuses on such major questions as the nature
    and characteristic modes of action of a foreign regime, then perhaps the juxtaposition of political philosophy and intelligence may seem less far-fetched. Indeed, in his gentleness, his ability to concentrate on detail, his consequent success in looking below the surface and reading between the
    lines, and his seeming unworldliness, Leo Strauss may even be said to resemble, however faintly, the George Smiley of John LeCarr?'s novels
     
    Shulsky goes on to say Straussian methods could determine that there is no such thing as a moderate in the Iranian leadership. Iran is munfinished business, and it is going to get attacked gets attacked you can say how it had nothing to do with
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  144. @Art Deco
    Indeed, a book which you yourself misquoted, attributing a remark by Buckley which Nash claims was aimed at Karl Hess as being aimed at Rothbard.

    No, it was aimed at Rothbard, and it concerned Rothbard's endorsement of the work of revisionist historians of the Cold War.

    Art the Pathoglical Liar wrote to me:

    No, it was aimed at Rothbard, and it concerned Rothbard’s endorsement of the work of revisionist historians of the Cold War.

    Now, we have you. You are a pathological liar.

    I urge anyone who doubts this to read the link I provided above: here again is the link from the book you yourself cited. What Nash actually said from the book you yourself cited was:

    More “nauseating” to Buckley was Karl Hess’s statement…

    See: “Karl Hess” not Rothbard.

    (To anyone too lazy to click the link and read the page, Nash was referring to a joke Karl Hess made comparing J. Edgar Hoover to the head of the Soviet secret police Lavrentiy Beria. Whether you like the joke or are scandalized by the joke — or think it wasn’t a joke — according to Nash, who is Art’s source, the joke was Hess’s, not Rothbard’s. Every source I have seen on this — the incident is well-known — agrees with Nash, not with Art the Pathological Liar.)

    You want us to believe you are not a pathological liar?? Fine, show us where else in this book Nash claimed that Buckley referred to Rothbard, not Karl Hess, as “nauseating.”

    Otherwise, you have just proven yourself to be a thuggish pathological liar.

    Anyone can use the search function in the link to the book I have provided on the word “nauseating”: anyone who wants to bother now can prove to themselves that you are a pathological liar.

    Like that thug Buckley.

    (The same section of Nash’s book reiterates Buckley’s pathological obsession with lighthouses, probably due to Buckley’s obsession about pretending to be a sailor.)

    Why do you lie like this?

    Do you make a living somehow off the lies of “Conservatism, Inc.”?

    Or are you one of those people who just give away their integrity for free?

    Why on earth do you bother to lie when it is so easy to show any sane person that you are lying?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Your link doesn't go anywhere.

    I gather you've been posting from here:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/99/cf/d6/99cfd67f5342eeeba73b36b7fceebc3a.jpg
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  145. @Art Deco
    You, Denialist, are guilty as charged.

    You're welcome to examine some of Rothbard's contributions to Chronicles post 1989, including the one where he endorses freebooting by police officers. (Pretty jarring for a man who once compared J. Edgar Hoover to Laverenty Beria). You're also free to read this brief commentary on the problems with Austrian economics.


    http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/bcaplan/whyaust.htm


    (I think Caplan's rejection of quantitative methods is ill judged, and cannot be bothered with his research output, btw).

    Art the Pathological Liar wrote:

    You’re welcome to examine some of Rothbard’s contributions to Chronicles post 1989, including the one where he endorses freebooting by police officers. (Pretty jarring for a man who once compared J. Edgar Hoover to Laverenty Beria).

    Ah, okay, the lying from you never ends,, does it? Again, anyone can check the link in my immediately preceding post to see that the comparison was due to Karl Hess, according to the source you yourself cite.

    Read More
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  146. The pleasant little discussion Art Deco and I have conducted about William F. Buckley, Jr. has not touched on perhaps the most significant fact about Buckley: he was an open and public advocate of totalitarianism for the USA. In an essay published in the magazine Commonweal in January 1952, Buckley demanded a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores.”

    Note that this was published three years before he started National Review and, apparently, not long after he joined the CIA. He was already a published author (God and Man At Yale) in his mid-20s. This was not some young college kid mouthing off in an alternative newspaper.

    I have never been able to find any indication that Buckley ever repudiated this essay.

    Why didn’t he keep repeating this evil openly throughout his career? Why did he become (slightly) more subtle in his totalitarian allegiance?

    I would guess that someone in his then employer — the CIA — told him to cool it: openly advocating a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores.” is not exactly effective propaganda to try to woo the American people!

    The bigger question is why this fact about Buckley is not repeated every time his name comes up in every news story, every academic study, etc.?

    Let’s just say that the Establishment — and the Company — knows and protects its own.

    (Incidentally, if anyone thinks the link I provide is some sort of fake and that Buckley did not really write this, I actually went over to our local university, which owns that volume of Commonweal, and confirmed that, yes, this is for real. If anyone doubts this, Commonweal is widely owned by decent university libraries: check it out for yourself.)

    Nash’s book which Art cites, concedes that Buckley was a pivotal figure in the founding of modern “movement” conservatism (AKA “Conservatism, Inc.”). And, this is who Buckley was. Movement conservatism is not about conserving American freedom: it is, as Buckley proclaimed, about supporting a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores.”

    The fact that Paul Ryan et al,. have failed to shrink the size of the federal government, restore individual freedom, etc. is not a bug; it is a feature: it was Buckley’s plan from the beginning.

    Is Art Deco too dumb to know this? No, I don’t think so. Not at all. I think Art knows which side he is on.

    Read More
    • Replies: @vinteuil
    Thanks for the link, PD. It's interesting to discover that WFB's style really always was that bad, from the very beginning. It takes him forever to get around to his point, and he never fails to take twelve words to say unclearly what he could have said clearly in five.

    That said, I don't find the article all that damning. The young Buckley's point is just that Stalin's Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can't be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.

    Was he wrong about that? Dunno. But in 1952 Stalin's U.S.S.R. looked pretty formidable to a lot of seemingly rational & well-informed people.
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  147. @Art Deco
    You've not named a single student of Strauss (much less a collection of them) who had a particular view of the Iraq War which was derived from his history as a student of Strauss.

    Shulsky is an expert on Strauss, and has a page to himself on the University of Chicago Leo Strauss Center website https://leostrausscenter.uchicago.edu/node/161

    Again, Shulsky explicitly wrote of the influence that Leo Strauss had on his methodology https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/files/leo_strauss_and_the_world_of_intelligence.pdf Basically it says the conventional professional intelligence experts are too trusting of countries like Iran. As for Iraq:-

    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/05/12/selective-intelligence

    The director of the Special Plans operation is Abram Shulsky, a scholarly expert in the works of the political philosopher Leo Strauss. Shulsky has been quietly working on intelligence and foreign-policy issues for three decades; he was on the staff of the Senate Intelligence Com-mittee in the early nineteen-eighties and served in the Pentagon under Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Perle during the Reagan Administration, after which he joined the Rand Corporation [...] Another Strauss critic, Stephen Holmes, a law professor at New York University, put the Straussians’ position this way: “They believe that your enemy is deceiving you, and you have to pretend to agree, but secretly you follow your own views.” Holmes added, “The whole story is complicated by Strauss’s idea—actually Plato’s—that philosophers need to tell noble lies not only to the people at large but also to powerful politicians.”
    When I asked one of Strauss’s staunchest defenders, Joseph Cropsey, professor emeritus of political science at Chicago, about the use of Strauss’s views in the area of policymaking, he told me that common sense alone suggested that a certain amount of deception is essential in government. “That people in government have to be discreet in what they say publicly is so obvious—‘If I tell you the truth I can’t but help the enemy.’ ” But there is nothing in Strauss’s work, he added, that “favors preëmptive action. What it favors is prudence and sound judgment. If you could have got rid of Hitler in the nineteen-thirties, who’s not going to be in favor of that? You don’t need Strauss to reach that conclusion.”

    In the above linked paper of Shulsky on Strauss and intelligence, Shulsky wrote

    Leo Strauss and the World of Intelligence
    (By Which We Do Not Mean Nous)
    Gary J. Schmitt and Abram N. Shulsky
    The topic must appear at first as a very strange one: what possible connection could there be between the tumultuous world of spies and snooping paraphernalia, on the one hand, and the
    quiet life of scholarship and immersion in ancient texts, on the other? However, intelligence isn’t only involved with espionage and whiz-bang gadgetry; a large part of it deals with the patient
    piecing together of bits of information to yield the outlines of the larger picture. When one considers that this effort, called “analysis,” often focuses on such major questions as the nature
    and characteristic modes of action of a foreign regime, then perhaps the juxtaposition of political philosophy and intelligence may seem less far-fetched. Indeed, in his gentleness, his ability to concentrate on detail, his consequent success in looking below the surface and reading between the
    lines, and his seeming unworldliness, Leo Strauss may even be said to resemble, however faintly, the George Smiley of John LeCarr?’s novels

    Shulsky goes on to say Straussian methods could determine that there is no such thing as a moderate in the Iranian leadership. Iran is munfinished business, and it is going to get attacked gets attacked you can say how it had nothing to do with

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Shulsky is an expert on Strauss, and has a page to himself on the University of Chicago Leo Strauss Center website https://leostrausscenter.uchicago.edu/node/161

    No, he took three courses with Strauss over the period running from 1964 to 1967. As he indicates in the interview, he'd intended at the time of his enrollment to study political theory and ended up studying international relations, so Strauss was not his dissertation supervisor. He attributes to Strauss no substantive content in his own political thought, merely an inclination to think outside of certain boxes.
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  148. @PhysicistDave
    The pleasant little discussion Art Deco and I have conducted about William F. Buckley, Jr. has not touched on perhaps the most significant fact about Buckley: he was an open and public advocate of totalitarianism for the USA. In an essay published in the magazine Commonweal in January 1952, Buckley demanded a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores."

    Note that this was published three years before he started National Review and, apparently, not long after he joined the CIA. He was already a published author (God and Man At Yale) in his mid-20s. This was not some young college kid mouthing off in an alternative newspaper.

    I have never been able to find any indication that Buckley ever repudiated this essay.

    Why didn't he keep repeating this evil openly throughout his career? Why did he become (slightly) more subtle in his totalitarian allegiance?

    I would guess that someone in his then employer -- the CIA -- told him to cool it: openly advocating a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores." is not exactly effective propaganda to try to woo the American people!

    The bigger question is why this fact about Buckley is not repeated every time his name comes up in every news story, every academic study, etc.?

    Let's just say that the Establishment -- and the Company -- knows and protects its own.

    (Incidentally, if anyone thinks the link I provide is some sort of fake and that Buckley did not really write this, I actually went over to our local university, which owns that volume of Commonweal, and confirmed that, yes, this is for real. If anyone doubts this, Commonweal is widely owned by decent university libraries: check it out for yourself.)

    Nash's book which Art cites, concedes that Buckley was a pivotal figure in the founding of modern "movement" conservatism (AKA "Conservatism, Inc."). And, this is who Buckley was. Movement conservatism is not about conserving American freedom: it is, as Buckley proclaimed, about supporting a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores."

    The fact that Paul Ryan et al,. have failed to shrink the size of the federal government, restore individual freedom, etc. is not a bug; it is a feature: it was Buckley's plan from the beginning.

    Is Art Deco too dumb to know this? No, I don't think so. Not at all. I think Art knows which side he is on.

    Thanks for the link, PD. It’s interesting to discover that WFB’s style really always was that bad, from the very beginning. It takes him forever to get around to his point, and he never fails to take twelve words to say unclearly what he could have said clearly in five.

    That said, I don’t find the article all that damning. The young Buckley’s point is just that Stalin’s Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can’t be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.

    Was he wrong about that? Dunno. But in 1952 Stalin’s U.S.S.R. looked pretty formidable to a lot of seemingly rational & well-informed people.

    Read More
    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    vinteuil wrote to me:

    The young Buckley’s point is just that Stalin’s Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can’t be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.
     
    Well... if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores"?

    Pretty strong language.

    Imagine if the Donald or even Hillary or Bernie had written something like this in their mid-20s and never repudiated it. They'd be toast.

    And, if you read the article carefully, I think you'll see that he was indeed advocating more than just a strong military. He seems pretty clearly (okay, at least as clearly as his bizarrely inept writing style allowed!) to be endorsing what we now call the "Deep State," an extra-constitutional structure to imitate the Soviets.

    After all, that makes sense, considering that when this was published Buckley was himself a stooge of the Deep State: i.e., A CIA operative in Mexico.

    As incompetent as Buckley surely was as a writer (despite the fact that weirdos like Art the Liar think Buckley could write well), I think it is unfair to Buckley to suppose that he did not know the meaning of the phrase "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores." People were talking a lot about totalitarianism back in the '50s, with good reason, and Buckley knew what it meant and how people would understand that phrase.

    Back in the '60s, we heard the phrase "We had to destroy the village in order to save it." Buckley makes clear that his view was that we had to destroy the American Republic in order to save it. And, he and his cohorts succeeded: the idea that the American regime today has much connection to the Republic established by the Framers or indeed to the Republic that existed prior to 1933 is absurd.

    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state. Buckley was the seminal figure in changing that: after Buckley, "conservatism" was about being cheerleaders for New Deal/Fair Deal foreign policy while accpeting New Deal domestic policy.

    Buckley meant what he said: he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores" AKA the Deep State.

    And he succeeded.
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  149. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Pathoglical Liar wrote to me:

    No, it was aimed at Rothbard, and it concerned Rothbard’s endorsement of the work of revisionist historians of the Cold War.
     
    Now, we have you. You are a pathological liar.

    I urge anyone who doubts this to read the link I provided above: here again is the link from the book you yourself cited. What Nash actually said from the book you yourself cited was:

    More "nauseating" to Buckley was Karl Hess's statement...
     
    See: "Karl Hess" not Rothbard.

    (To anyone too lazy to click the link and read the page, Nash was referring to a joke Karl Hess made comparing J. Edgar Hoover to the head of the Soviet secret police Lavrentiy Beria. Whether you like the joke or are scandalized by the joke -- or think it wasn't a joke -- according to Nash, who is Art's source, the joke was Hess's, not Rothbard's. Every source I have seen on this -- the incident is well-known -- agrees with Nash, not with Art the Pathological Liar.)

    You want us to believe you are not a pathological liar?? Fine, show us where else in this book Nash claimed that Buckley referred to Rothbard, not Karl Hess, as "nauseating."

    Otherwise, you have just proven yourself to be a thuggish pathological liar.

    Anyone can use the search function in the link to the book I have provided on the word "nauseating": anyone who wants to bother now can prove to themselves that you are a pathological liar.

    Like that thug Buckley.

    (The same section of Nash's book reiterates Buckley's pathological obsession with lighthouses, probably due to Buckley's obsession about pretending to be a sailor.)

    Why do you lie like this?

    Do you make a living somehow off the lies of "Conservatism, Inc."?

    Or are you one of those people who just give away their integrity for free?

    Why on earth do you bother to lie when it is so easy to show any sane person that you are lying?

    Your link doesn’t go anywhere.

    I gather you’ve been posting from here:

    Read More
    • Replies: @vinteuil
    AD - try this:

    https://adamgomez.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/partyandthedeepbluesea-1952.pdf

    It's actually kind of an interesting essay.

    , @PhysicistDave
    Art the Pathological Liar wrote to me:

    Your link doesn’t go anywhere.

    I gather you’ve been posting from here:
     
    I had already posted the link to the Nash book that you yourself cited earlier. Yes, the second time I posted it, the link did not register properly. Here again is the link that I posted correctly a few days ago.

    And, yes, the book you yourself cited does prove you are a pathological liar.

    You are a proven pathological liar. You know it, and everyone here knows it. Now, if you would just tell us your real name, the whole world could know it. But, you don't have the guts to do that.

    Liar.

    Dave Miller in Sacramento
    , @PhysicistDave
    I ask again, Art:

    Are you actually getting paid by Conservatism, Inc.?

    Or are you one of those people who give away their integrity for free?
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  150. @Art Deco
    Your link doesn't go anywhere.

    I gather you've been posting from here:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/99/cf/d6/99cfd67f5342eeeba73b36b7fceebc3a.jpg

    AD – try this:

    https://adamgomez.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/partyandthedeepbluesea-1952.pdf

    It’s actually kind of an interesting essay.

    Read More
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  151. @Art Deco
    Your link doesn't go anywhere.

    I gather you've been posting from here:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/99/cf/d6/99cfd67f5342eeeba73b36b7fceebc3a.jpg

    Art the Pathological Liar wrote to me:

    Your link doesn’t go anywhere.

    I gather you’ve been posting from here:

    I had already posted the link to the Nash book that you yourself cited earlier. Yes, the second time I posted it, the link did not register properly. Here again is the link that I posted correctly a few days ago.

    And, yes, the book you yourself cited does prove you are a pathological liar.

    You are a proven pathological liar. You know it, and everyone here knows it. Now, if you would just tell us your real name, the whole world could know it. But, you don’t have the guts to do that.

    Liar.

    Dave Miller in Sacramento

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Thank you for the link. I stand corrected on that point.
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  152. @vinteuil
    Thanks for the link, PD. It's interesting to discover that WFB's style really always was that bad, from the very beginning. It takes him forever to get around to his point, and he never fails to take twelve words to say unclearly what he could have said clearly in five.

    That said, I don't find the article all that damning. The young Buckley's point is just that Stalin's Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can't be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.

    Was he wrong about that? Dunno. But in 1952 Stalin's U.S.S.R. looked pretty formidable to a lot of seemingly rational & well-informed people.

    vinteuil wrote to me:

    The young Buckley’s point is just that Stalin’s Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can’t be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.

    Well… if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores”?

    Pretty strong language.

    Imagine if the Donald or even Hillary or Bernie had written something like this in their mid-20s and never repudiated it. They’d be toast.

    And, if you read the article carefully, I think you’ll see that he was indeed advocating more than just a strong military. He seems pretty clearly (okay, at least as clearly as his bizarrely inept writing style allowed!) to be endorsing what we now call the “Deep State,” an extra-constitutional structure to imitate the Soviets.

    After all, that makes sense, considering that when this was published Buckley was himself a stooge of the Deep State: i.e., A CIA operative in Mexico.

    As incompetent as Buckley surely was as a writer (despite the fact that weirdos like Art the Liar think Buckley could write well), I think it is unfair to Buckley to suppose that he did not know the meaning of the phrase “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores.” People were talking a lot about totalitarianism back in the ’50s, with good reason, and Buckley knew what it meant and how people would understand that phrase.

    Back in the ’60s, we heard the phrase “We had to destroy the village in order to save it.” Buckley makes clear that his view was that we had to destroy the American Republic in order to save it. And, he and his cohorts succeeded: the idea that the American regime today has much connection to the Republic established by the Framers or indeed to the Republic that existed prior to 1933 is absurd.

    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state. Buckley was the seminal figure in changing that: after Buckley, “conservatism” was about being cheerleaders for New Deal/Fair Deal foreign policy while accpeting New Deal domestic policy.

    Buckley meant what he said: he wanted a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores” AKA the Deep State.

    And he succeeded.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state.

    The GOP was all over the map, and was an omnibus for anyone with a family history of Republican affiliation and for those who couldn't abide segregation, couldn't abide machine politics, and couldn't abide union thuggery. Presidential candidates nominated by the Republican Party over a period of nearly 30 years included two men who were vaguely liberal and three men who had no interest in contentious battles with the Democratic Party over political economy (though Nixon was more strongly influenced than Eisenhower by the regnant social-liberal disposition of the academy and other elements of the professional-managerial set). As for the 'right wing', its principal exponent was Robert Taft, who was...inconsistent. (His history as a legislator included sponsoring 'urban renewal' legislation). Taft's most vocal exponent as a presidential candidate was Everett Dirksen, who was never a capable exponent of alternative modes of political economy. The sort of dreck Murray Rothbard fancied had a weak constituency in Congress ca. 1949 and none at all ca. 1959.
    , @Art Deco
    Well… if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores”?

    You've quoted him out of context and completed misrepresented his meaning. You've called me a 'pathological liar'. You should quit projecting.
    , @vinteuil
    Buckley famously responded to a reader who criticized his syntax: "if you had my syntax you'd be rich." And I guess he had a point: he did very well out of peddling his style to the bubbas, longing to think themselves sophisticated.

    Anyway, be that as it may...

    Tis dangerous when the baser nature comes
    Between the pass and fell incensèd points
    Of mighty opposites.

    So it's back to the sidelines, for me.
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  153. @Art Deco
    Your link doesn't go anywhere.

    I gather you've been posting from here:

    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/99/cf/d6/99cfd67f5342eeeba73b36b7fceebc3a.jpg

    I ask again, Art:

    Are you actually getting paid by Conservatism, Inc.?

    Or are you one of those people who give away their integrity for free?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Art Deco
    Are you actually getting paid by Conservatism, Inc.?

    Strange as it may seem to you, people just might take strong exception to something you say without getting paid for it. No, I'm not getting a stipend from the Mossad, or from AEI, or from anyone else. Now, the activities therapy class is starting and they're making trivets today, so put the computer away. Cheryl will be leading everyone from the day room to the studio on the 2d floor.

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  154. @PhysicistDave
    Art the Pathological Liar wrote to me:

    Your link doesn’t go anywhere.

    I gather you’ve been posting from here:
     
    I had already posted the link to the Nash book that you yourself cited earlier. Yes, the second time I posted it, the link did not register properly. Here again is the link that I posted correctly a few days ago.

    And, yes, the book you yourself cited does prove you are a pathological liar.

    You are a proven pathological liar. You know it, and everyone here knows it. Now, if you would just tell us your real name, the whole world could know it. But, you don't have the guts to do that.

    Liar.

    Dave Miller in Sacramento

    Thank you for the link. I stand corrected on that point.

    Read More
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  155. @PhysicistDave
    vinteuil wrote to me:

    The young Buckley’s point is just that Stalin’s Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can’t be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.
     
    Well... if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores"?

    Pretty strong language.

    Imagine if the Donald or even Hillary or Bernie had written something like this in their mid-20s and never repudiated it. They'd be toast.

    And, if you read the article carefully, I think you'll see that he was indeed advocating more than just a strong military. He seems pretty clearly (okay, at least as clearly as his bizarrely inept writing style allowed!) to be endorsing what we now call the "Deep State," an extra-constitutional structure to imitate the Soviets.

    After all, that makes sense, considering that when this was published Buckley was himself a stooge of the Deep State: i.e., A CIA operative in Mexico.

    As incompetent as Buckley surely was as a writer (despite the fact that weirdos like Art the Liar think Buckley could write well), I think it is unfair to Buckley to suppose that he did not know the meaning of the phrase "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores." People were talking a lot about totalitarianism back in the '50s, with good reason, and Buckley knew what it meant and how people would understand that phrase.

    Back in the '60s, we heard the phrase "We had to destroy the village in order to save it." Buckley makes clear that his view was that we had to destroy the American Republic in order to save it. And, he and his cohorts succeeded: the idea that the American regime today has much connection to the Republic established by the Framers or indeed to the Republic that existed prior to 1933 is absurd.

    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state. Buckley was the seminal figure in changing that: after Buckley, "conservatism" was about being cheerleaders for New Deal/Fair Deal foreign policy while accpeting New Deal domestic policy.

    Buckley meant what he said: he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores" AKA the Deep State.

    And he succeeded.

    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state.

    The GOP was all over the map, and was an omnibus for anyone with a family history of Republican affiliation and for those who couldn’t abide segregation, couldn’t abide machine politics, and couldn’t abide union thuggery. Presidential candidates nominated by the Republican Party over a period of nearly 30 years included two men who were vaguely liberal and three men who had no interest in contentious battles with the Democratic Party over political economy (though Nixon was more strongly influenced than Eisenhower by the regnant social-liberal disposition of the academy and other elements of the professional-managerial set). As for the ‘right wing’, its principal exponent was Robert Taft, who was…inconsistent. (His history as a legislator included sponsoring ‘urban renewal’ legislation). Taft’s most vocal exponent as a presidential candidate was Everett Dirksen, who was never a capable exponent of alternative modes of political economy. The sort of dreck Murray Rothbard fancied had a weak constituency in Congress ca. 1949 and none at all ca. 1959.

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  156. @PhysicistDave
    vinteuil wrote to me:

    The young Buckley’s point is just that Stalin’s Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can’t be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.
     
    Well... if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores"?

    Pretty strong language.

    Imagine if the Donald or even Hillary or Bernie had written something like this in their mid-20s and never repudiated it. They'd be toast.

    And, if you read the article carefully, I think you'll see that he was indeed advocating more than just a strong military. He seems pretty clearly (okay, at least as clearly as his bizarrely inept writing style allowed!) to be endorsing what we now call the "Deep State," an extra-constitutional structure to imitate the Soviets.

    After all, that makes sense, considering that when this was published Buckley was himself a stooge of the Deep State: i.e., A CIA operative in Mexico.

    As incompetent as Buckley surely was as a writer (despite the fact that weirdos like Art the Liar think Buckley could write well), I think it is unfair to Buckley to suppose that he did not know the meaning of the phrase "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores." People were talking a lot about totalitarianism back in the '50s, with good reason, and Buckley knew what it meant and how people would understand that phrase.

    Back in the '60s, we heard the phrase "We had to destroy the village in order to save it." Buckley makes clear that his view was that we had to destroy the American Republic in order to save it. And, he and his cohorts succeeded: the idea that the American regime today has much connection to the Republic established by the Framers or indeed to the Republic that existed prior to 1933 is absurd.

    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state. Buckley was the seminal figure in changing that: after Buckley, "conservatism" was about being cheerleaders for New Deal/Fair Deal foreign policy while accpeting New Deal domestic policy.

    Buckley meant what he said: he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores" AKA the Deep State.

    And he succeeded.

    Well… if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a “totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores”?

    You’ve quoted him out of context and completed misrepresented his meaning. You’ve called me a ‘pathological liar’. You should quit projecting.

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  157. @Sean
    Shulsky is an expert on Strauss, and has a page to himself on the University of Chicago Leo Strauss Center website https://leostrausscenter.uchicago.edu/node/161

    Again, Shulsky explicitly wrote of the influence that Leo Strauss had on his methodology https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/files/leo_strauss_and_the_world_of_intelligence.pdf Basically it says the conventional professional intelligence experts are too trusting of countries like Iran. As for Iraq:-

    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2003/05/12/selective-intelligence

    The director of the Special Plans operation is Abram Shulsky, a scholarly expert in the works of the political philosopher Leo Strauss. Shulsky has been quietly working on intelligence and foreign-policy issues for three decades; he was on the staff of the Senate Intelligence Com-mittee in the early nineteen-eighties and served in the Pentagon under Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Perle during the Reagan Administration, after which he joined the Rand Corporation [...] Another Strauss critic, Stephen Holmes, a law professor at New York University, put the Straussians’ position this way: “They believe that your enemy is deceiving you, and you have to pretend to agree, but secretly you follow your own views.” Holmes added, “The whole story is complicated by Strauss’s idea—actually Plato’s—that philosophers need to tell noble lies not only to the people at large but also to powerful politicians.”
    When I asked one of Strauss’s staunchest defenders, Joseph Cropsey, professor emeritus of political science at Chicago, about the use of Strauss’s views in the area of policymaking, he told me that common sense alone suggested that a certain amount of deception is essential in government. “That people in government have to be discreet in what they say publicly is so obvious—‘If I tell you the truth I can’t but help the enemy.’ ” But there is nothing in Strauss’s work, he added, that “favors preëmptive action. What it favors is prudence and sound judgment. If you could have got rid of Hitler in the nineteen-thirties, who’s not going to be in favor of that? You don’t need Strauss to reach that conclusion.”
     
    In the above linked paper of Shulsky on Strauss and intelligence, Shulsky wrote

    Leo Strauss and the World of Intelligence
    (By Which We Do Not Mean Nous)
    Gary J. Schmitt and Abram N. Shulsky
    The topic must appear at first as a very strange one: what possible connection could there be between the tumultuous world of spies and snooping paraphernalia, on the one hand, and the
    quiet life of scholarship and immersion in ancient texts, on the other? However, intelligence isn't only involved with espionage and whiz-bang gadgetry; a large part of it deals with the patient
    piecing together of bits of information to yield the outlines of the larger picture. When one considers that this effort, called "analysis," often focuses on such major questions as the nature
    and characteristic modes of action of a foreign regime, then perhaps the juxtaposition of political philosophy and intelligence may seem less far-fetched. Indeed, in his gentleness, his ability to concentrate on detail, his consequent success in looking below the surface and reading between the
    lines, and his seeming unworldliness, Leo Strauss may even be said to resemble, however faintly, the George Smiley of John LeCarr?'s novels
     
    Shulsky goes on to say Straussian methods could determine that there is no such thing as a moderate in the Iranian leadership. Iran is munfinished business, and it is going to get attacked gets attacked you can say how it had nothing to do with

    Shulsky is an expert on Strauss, and has a page to himself on the University of Chicago Leo Strauss Center website https://leostrausscenter.uchicago.edu/node/161

    No, he took three courses with Strauss over the period running from 1964 to 1967. As he indicates in the interview, he’d intended at the time of his enrollment to study political theory and ended up studying international relations, so Strauss was not his dissertation supervisor. He attributes to Strauss no substantive content in his own political thought, merely an inclination to think outside of certain boxes.

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    • Replies: @Sean

    Agreement at all costs is possible only as agreement at the cost of the meaning of human life; for agreement at all costs is possible only if man has relinquished asking the question of what is right; and if man relinquishes that question, he relinquishes being a man.
     
    Strauss is saying that while Carl Schmitt (with his idea that any real disagreement is really a fighting question) is just a mirror image of a liberal, politics sometimes does come down to a fighting question. Shulsky must have started from that viewpoint because he did in fact advocate for war on Iraq. However Gudmundsson says Bush the Elder's halt in the American advance during the operation to expel Iraq from Kuwait was due to the US's ruinously gas guzzling tanks (bad mistake by the professionals if true). It was possibly unfinished business, but Shulsky advocated for it heading a Team B type project he was picked for by a neocon , not an objective professional intelligence operation. Paul Wolfowitz was told to shut up around the pres about invading Iraq because he was like "a parrot" on the subject . Wolfowitz picked Shulsky .
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  158. @PhysicistDave
    I ask again, Art:

    Are you actually getting paid by Conservatism, Inc.?

    Or are you one of those people who give away their integrity for free?

    Are you actually getting paid by Conservatism, Inc.?

    Strange as it may seem to you, people just might take strong exception to something you say without getting paid for it. No, I’m not getting a stipend from the Mossad, or from AEI, or from anyone else. Now, the activities therapy class is starting and they’re making trivets today, so put the computer away. Cheryl will be leading everyone from the day room to the studio on the 2d floor.

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    • LOL: Johann Ricke
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  159. @PhysicistDave
    vinteuil wrote to me:

    The young Buckley’s point is just that Stalin’s Soviet Union is a serious threat that needs defeating, and that it can’t be defeated without accepting a bigger military establishment than old-fashioned Republicans would like.
     
    Well... if that was all he meant, why did Buckley say so explicitly that he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores"?

    Pretty strong language.

    Imagine if the Donald or even Hillary or Bernie had written something like this in their mid-20s and never repudiated it. They'd be toast.

    And, if you read the article carefully, I think you'll see that he was indeed advocating more than just a strong military. He seems pretty clearly (okay, at least as clearly as his bizarrely inept writing style allowed!) to be endorsing what we now call the "Deep State," an extra-constitutional structure to imitate the Soviets.

    After all, that makes sense, considering that when this was published Buckley was himself a stooge of the Deep State: i.e., A CIA operative in Mexico.

    As incompetent as Buckley surely was as a writer (despite the fact that weirdos like Art the Liar think Buckley could write well), I think it is unfair to Buckley to suppose that he did not know the meaning of the phrase "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores." People were talking a lot about totalitarianism back in the '50s, with good reason, and Buckley knew what it meant and how people would understand that phrase.

    Back in the '60s, we heard the phrase "We had to destroy the village in order to save it." Buckley makes clear that his view was that we had to destroy the American Republic in order to save it. And, he and his cohorts succeeded: the idea that the American regime today has much connection to the Republic established by the Framers or indeed to the Republic that existed prior to 1933 is absurd.

    Prior to 1950, the GOP and the right-wing were about fighting the New Deal welfare-warfare state. Buckley was the seminal figure in changing that: after Buckley, "conservatism" was about being cheerleaders for New Deal/Fair Deal foreign policy while accpeting New Deal domestic policy.

    Buckley meant what he said: he wanted a "totalitarian bureaucracy within our shores" AKA the Deep State.

    And he succeeded.

    Buckley famously responded to a reader who criticized his syntax: “if you had my syntax you’d be rich.” And I guess he had a point: he did very well out of peddling his style to the bubbas, longing to think themselves sophisticated.

    Anyway, be that as it may…

    Tis dangerous when the baser nature comes
    Between the pass and fell incensèd points
    Of mighty opposites.

    So it’s back to the sidelines, for me.

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    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
    vinteuil wrote:

    Buckley famously responded to a reader who criticized his syntax: “if you had my syntax you’d be rich.”
     
    Buckley's dad was rich.

    I suppose that is the best way to get rich -- choose your parents wisely. And have very, very indulgent parents, as Billy Jr. clearly did. (And, perhaps, a big dollop of CIA money helped, if we credit Billy Jr's. close associate Frank Meyer.)

    Fortunately, no matter what pathological liars like Art say, the thug Billy Jr. remains dead.
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  160. @Art Deco
    Shulsky is an expert on Strauss, and has a page to himself on the University of Chicago Leo Strauss Center website https://leostrausscenter.uchicago.edu/node/161

    No, he took three courses with Strauss over the period running from 1964 to 1967. As he indicates in the interview, he'd intended at the time of his enrollment to study political theory and ended up studying international relations, so Strauss was not his dissertation supervisor. He attributes to Strauss no substantive content in his own political thought, merely an inclination to think outside of certain boxes.

    Agreement at all costs is possible only as agreement at the cost of the meaning of human life; for agreement at all costs is possible only if man has relinquished asking the question of what is right; and if man relinquishes that question, he relinquishes being a man.

    Strauss is saying that while Carl Schmitt (with his idea that any real disagreement is really a fighting question) is just a mirror image of a liberal, politics sometimes does come down to a fighting question. Shulsky must have started from that viewpoint because he did in fact advocate for war on Iraq. However Gudmundsson says Bush the Elder’s halt in the American advance during the operation to expel Iraq from Kuwait was due to the US’s ruinously gas guzzling tanks (bad mistake by the professionals if true). It was possibly unfinished business, but Shulsky advocated for it heading a Team B type project he was picked for by a neocon , not an objective professional intelligence operation. Paul Wolfowitz was told to shut up around the pres about invading Iraq because he was like “a parrot” on the subject . Wolfowitz picked Shulsky .

    Read More
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  161. @vinteuil
    Buckley famously responded to a reader who criticized his syntax: "if you had my syntax you'd be rich." And I guess he had a point: he did very well out of peddling his style to the bubbas, longing to think themselves sophisticated.

    Anyway, be that as it may...

    Tis dangerous when the baser nature comes
    Between the pass and fell incensèd points
    Of mighty opposites.

    So it's back to the sidelines, for me.

    vinteuil wrote:

    Buckley famously responded to a reader who criticized his syntax: “if you had my syntax you’d be rich.”

    Buckley’s dad was rich.

    I suppose that is the best way to get rich — choose your parents wisely. And have very, very indulgent parents, as Billy Jr. clearly did. (And, perhaps, a big dollop of CIA money helped, if we credit Billy Jr’s. close associate Frank Meyer.)

    Fortunately, no matter what pathological liars like Art say, the thug Billy Jr. remains dead.

    Read More
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