Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Uma Crítica Válida ao Conservadorismo Americano
Artigo interessante de Claes Ryn publicado no The Imaginative Conservative: The conservative movement has had difficulty ranking intellectual contributions and distinguishing between profundity and superficiality, truth and ideology—a weakness that has festered and worsened with time. So-called neoconservatives have asserted that, before they provided fresh fire-power, American conservatism was intellectually weak and ineffectual. But a person really familiar with American intellectual conservatism in the decades just after World War II who compares it to neoconservatism is struck, on the contrary, not only by the marked shift in views but also by the intellectual decline among those reputed to be the leading thinkers. This is so especially in the area of humane, historically based study and reflection. Though not without its intellectual problems, the earlier movement exhibited considerably greater depth and range. To support this point one need only mention a few names from that period, for example, Mel Bradford, Francis Canavan, Whittaker Chambers, Gottfried Dietze, John Hallowell, Will Herberg, Milton Hindus, Friedrich von Hayek, Erich von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Russell Kirk, John Lukacs, Thomas Molnar, Gerhart Niemeyer, Robert Nisbet, Wilhelm Röpke, Peter Stanlis, Stephen Tonsor, Peter Viereck, Eric Voegelin, Eliseo Vivas, Richard Weaver, and Francis Graham Wilson—a selective list that is merely suggestive of the intellectual resources of the earlier conservatism. The claim of neoconservatives to have raised the general intellectual level of American conservatism shows plain ignorance or is calculated to distract attention from thinkers not serviceable to neoconservative designs. But, if the original conservative thought was generally superior, why would the movement have been drawn to neoconservatism? Besides raising the issue of the power of money and connections, this question brings us back to the lack of philosophical discipline.