Tuesday, July 30, 2019

21. Review: America First! By Bill Kauffman

In this episode we look deeper into the political environment of the first half of the 20th century, from the populist movement to the start of the Cold War, through Bill Kauffman's book, America First! Its History, Culture, and Politics. We look at such figures as Amos Pinchot, Alice Roosevelt Longworth, and Jack Kerouac. We look at the politicians of that era and dip into what it means to be an American.


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Thursday, July 25, 2019

What Sort of Awakening Shall We Have?


If you've been listening to the podcast, you know that I promote an early 20th century nationalistic version of conservatism. Any intellectually robust study of nationalism therefore immediately piques my interest.

Currently generating the most interest among nationalist thinkers is Isreali-American scholar Yoram Hazony. I recently read Hazony's The Virtue of Nationalismand while I haven't reviewed it yet, my copy has dog-ears and highlighted passages throughout, in preparation for the task. When I saw that Hazony was one of the organizers of the new National Conservatism Conference, I was sold.

After attending the event, I tossed around the idea of recording a podcast or even writing an article about my experiences. On the other hand, sticking to the book reviews seemed a little more on task for a podcast and website dedicated specifically to book reviews. I also had been turning over a variety of fresh ideas in my head and didn't want to jump into any sort of commentary until I had adequately percolated.

Then I read an analysis of the event on the Christian website Mere Orthodoxy. Much of my own thoughts concerning the event revolve around an atheistic, naturalistic interpretation of the current zeitgeist, and while I essentially concur with much of what was written there, a point-by-point response seems like the ideal avenue to raise a few important considerations.

Brad Littlejohn's article, 'A National Awakening', raises seven major points. He postulates three concepts that the new national conservatives repudiate, and four that they affirm. I'd like to respond to these one by one. First, the repudiations.

Monday, July 8, 2019

20. Review: Ship of Fools by Tucker Carlson

In this episode I explore Tucker Carlson's best-selling book, 'Ship of Fools.' Carlson lays out the case that the American elites have been completely derelict in their management of the nation. I pay particular attention to the rending of our social fabric by infatuation with multiculturalism at the expense of cultural integrity.



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Sunday, July 7, 2019

19. Review: Reclaiming the American Right by Justin Raimondo

In this episode I look toward the thinkers of the pre-WWII American right wing, commonly referred to as the Old Right, and the usurpation of the conservative movement by successive waves of neoconservatives. Raimondo weighs the prospects of the libertarians and paleoconservatives, and explores the notion of a new fusionism between the two. I contrast this with my own vision of neofusionism.



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Find Reclaiming the American Right on Amazon.

18. Review: In Defense of Freedom by Frank Meyer

In this episode I look at the origins of the concept of fusionism, from which neofusionism takes its cue. In 'In Defense of Freedom and Related Essays' Frank Meyer lays out the 1960s fusionist vision of merging libertarianism with traditionalism to create what we now call conservatism. I examine the relation between freedom, reason, virtue, and tradition, as well as the associated different roles of the state and the culture in maintaining a society that is both free and virtuous.



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Find In Defense of Freedom on Amazon.

17. Review: In Defense of Tradition by Richard Weaver

In this episode I dive into Richard Weaver's vast array of essays contained in the collection 'In Defense of Tradition.' Weaver covers such topics as dialectic vs rhetoric, the existence of human nature, and the effect of technology on the human condition.



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Find In Defense of Tradition on Amazon.

16. Review: Being and Time by Martin Heidegger

In this episode I examine the fundamental principles of Heidegger's existentialism, seeking the ways in which he describes Being from the experiential perspective of dasein, or the human being. This examination explores thrownness and facticity, and the striving toward authenticity that we can utilize in building a naturalistic foundation for paleoconservatism.



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15. Review: Revolt Against the Modern World

In this episode I look at the conflict between modernity and tradition from a pre-Christian, spriritually Traditionalist perspective in Julius Evola's Revolt Against the Modern World. I explore how we can look at time cyclically, and embrace the past though the notion of home. I begin to explore the similarities between ancient pagan thought and modern conservatism.

 

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14. Review: The Roots of Romanticism by Isaiah Berlin

In this episode I explore the Romantic response to the Enlightenment, in Isaiah Berlin's The Roots of Romanticism. I look at the German thinkers Hamann and Herder and their focus on the incapacity of the Enlightenment paradigm to account for the full richness of the individual and group identity.



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Saturday, July 6, 2019

13. Review: The Enlightenment: The Rise of Modern Paganism by Peter Gay

In this episode I take a deeper look at the philosophical concepts that undergird the Age of Enlightenment, through my examination of Peter Gay's 'The Enlightenment: The Rise of Modern Paganism.' In this book, Gay examines the connections that the philosophes felt with the ancient Greek and Roman thinkers, and the culture of criticism that they fostered in their conflict with Christianity.



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Tuesday, July 2, 2019

12. Review: The Cave and the Light by Arthur Herman

In this episode I track the conflict between realism and idealism all the way back to Plato and Aristotle in Arthur Herman's epic 'The Cave and the Light: Plato Versus Aristotle and the Struggle for the Soul of Western Civilization.' We explore Aristotle's influence on John Locke and the Enlightenment, and seek to assemble a philosophy that embraces empiricism, pragmatism, and the constrained vision.


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Find The Cave and the Light on Amazon.