The Corner

First of All

America’s most popular conservative pamphlet may be Imprimis, a monthly newsletter published by Hillsdale College. It boasts nearly two million readers. I’ve always been a little skeptical of this number because I receive three copies of Imprimis–two at home, one at NR. So I’m three readers. Even so, it’s a very popular publication. My father gets a copy. The only other right-of-center publication he subscribes to is NR. Imprimis has that kind of reach.

Jordan Michael Smith of Salon.com writes about Imprimis here, calling it “the most influential conservative publication you’ve never heard of.” (He interviewed me for the article and I’m quoted in it.) I could nitpick about some of Smith’s points. He makes it sound like Hillsdale quit taking federal money because it wanted to discriminate against women, for instance. That’s nonsense. It quit taking federal money because Washington’s ruling class wanted to deny it basic freedoms that institutions in a self-governing society ought to enjoy. But Smith does shine a little light on a worthy enterprise, albeit in the way of a journalist who is filing his anthropological field report on conservatism. Look at what the natives are reading!

Oh, and if you don’t already receive Imprimis, you should. It’s free. Go here.

John J. Miller, the national correspondent for National Review and host of its Great Books podcast, is the director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. He is the author of A Gift of Freedom: How the John M. Olin Foundation Changed America.

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