Sunday, April 14, 2013

Quotation Of The Day: Some Conservative Intellectuals Espoused Communitarians Edition

From this Carl T. Bogus* post at The American Conservative:
[Edmund] Burke’s new disciples agreed. “Conservatism,” Russell Kirk wrote, “never is more admirable than when it accepts change that it disapproves, with good grace, for the sake of the general condition; and the impetuous Burke, of all men, did most to establish that principle.”
At the most fundamental level, Burke was a communitarian. It is institutions—governmental, professional, religious, educational, and otherwise—that compose the fabric of society. Each of these institutions has classes of people who devote their careers to preserving and improving them: jurists serve the law, scholars their disciplines and universities, clerics their church, and so on. All citizens, in fact, are engaged in a sacred intergenerational compact. “Society,” Burke said, “becomes a partnership not only between those who are living, but between those who are living, those who are dead, and those who are to be born.”
For the Burkeans of 1950s, emphasis on community was at the heart of a properly conceived conservatism. Kirk wrote: “True conservatism … rises at the antipodes from individualism. Individualism is social atomism; conservatism is community of spirit.”
*Editorial Note: Bogus must be a true conservative. I would have changed my name when I reached the age of majority. I certainly would not have attempted to become a professor of law at Roger Williams University with Bogus as my surname.

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