Magazine August 29, 2011, Issue

Was Burke a Burkean Conservative?

Edmund Burke for Our Time: Moral Imagination, Meaning, and Politics, by William F. Byrne (Northern Illinois, 246 pp., $40)

Ben Franklin wrote in 1787, a year of some moment, that “only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.” In many ways, avoiding the latter consequence was the central preoccupation of the Anglo-Irish statesman and philosopher Edmund Burke, a Franklin contemporary. It is also the preoccupation of William F. Byrne’s new study of Burke’s moral and political thought.

From Burke’s time to ours, he has waxed and waned and, with the caprices of intellectual fashion, waxed again in the estimation of conservatives — at the mean, a kind of

Daniel FosterDaniel Foster is a former news editor of National Review Online.

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

Making Believe

With trumpets and drum rolls, the White House has released a new policy paper on methods to prevent terrorism, a study said to have been two years in the making. ...
Politics & Policy

London Aflame

London – Yesterday, August 8, I was watching live looting footage — some of it from districts near mine or where friends were hunkered down behind locked doors — with ...

Features

Politics & Policy

Gagging Us Softly

To be honest, I didn’t really think much about “freedom of speech” until I found myself the subject of three “hate speech” complaints in Canada in 2007. I mean I ...
Politics & Policy

Not a Race Card

A  number of states have recently passed voter-ID legislation — among them, Texas, Alabama, Kansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin, and Rhode Island. Two others, Georgia and Indiana, implemented such laws ...

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Something to Fear

  Decades ago, the historian Theodore Draper wrote about what he called the “minor academic industry” dedicated to resurrecting the reputation of the American Communist party. The industry’s ranks were composed ...
Politics & Policy

Roads Not Taken

Late summer, like midwinter, is a time of year when it’s best to shun the big studio releases. Any star-studded blockbuster or crowd-pleasing comedy that’s actually worth its budget (i.e., ...

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

Lochner in Rehab Reading Joseph Tartakovsky’s review of David Bernstein’s Rehabilitating Lochner (“Rights Revisited,” July 4), I got the sense that both gentlemen embrace the proposition that the 1905 Lochner decision was ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ Who would have guessed that Moammar Qaddafi would outlive America’s AAA rating? ‐ Wisconsin Democrats have gone to extraordinary lengths ever since Republicans introduced legislation to scale back the collective-bargaining ...
The Bent Pin

The Virgin Mother

A new version of an old song is running through my head. “‘M’ is for the million threats against you. ‘O’ is for Orlando’s mounted cops. ‘T’ is for tattoos ...
Athwart

The Empire Goes Hungry

We could spend our time together here detailing the ideas that separate the Right and the Left, but if Maureen Dowd has taught us anything, it’s that it’s more fun ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

  SOUTHERN STORM To the east is subtropical fern Whose shadows imprint the trails to the springs, More ancient than the forests themselves. To the west of these too-deep predawn pools There are rolling fields and ...
Happy Warrior

Old Blighted

I had a new book out the other day. Usual doom and gloom, as the more alert reader may just about be able to discern from the subtle title: After America: ...

Most Popular

Another Pollster Sees a Trump Win

The Trafalgar Group’s Robert Cahaly is an outlier among pollsters in that he thinks President Trump will carry Michigan, Pennsylvania, or both, and hence be reelected with roughly 280 electoral votes. (I explained his thinking here.) Last week another pollster, Jim Lee of Susquehanna Polling and Research, ... Read More

Another Pollster Sees a Trump Win

The Trafalgar Group’s Robert Cahaly is an outlier among pollsters in that he thinks President Trump will carry Michigan, Pennsylvania, or both, and hence be reelected with roughly 280 electoral votes. (I explained his thinking here.) Last week another pollster, Jim Lee of Susquehanna Polling and Research, ... Read More
Media

About That ‘Uncoverable’ Biden Story

Journalists claim they can’t cover the New York Post’s Hunter Biden email scoop because the underlying evidence has yet to been verified. Also, they won’t look for any verifying evidence because there isn’t enough evidence. It’s quite the conundrum. Because other than the now-corroborated emails, ... Read More
Media

About That ‘Uncoverable’ Biden Story

Journalists claim they can’t cover the New York Post’s Hunter Biden email scoop because the underlying evidence has yet to been verified. Also, they won’t look for any verifying evidence because there isn’t enough evidence. It’s quite the conundrum. Because other than the now-corroborated emails, ... Read More

Hunter Biden on Tape?

In a newly released recording, a man purported to be Hunter Biden is heard rambling about (a) his legal representation of Patrick Ho, a convicted former Hong Kong official he refers to as “the f***ing spy chief of China”; (b) his business dealings with Ye Jianming, the corrupt Chinese high roller, whom Hunter ... Read More

Hunter Biden on Tape?

In a newly released recording, a man purported to be Hunter Biden is heard rambling about (a) his legal representation of Patrick Ho, a convicted former Hong Kong official he refers to as “the f***ing spy chief of China”; (b) his business dealings with Ye Jianming, the corrupt Chinese high roller, whom Hunter ... Read More
Elections

Hell, No

Editor’s Note: If you would like to read more pros and cons on voting for President Trump, further essays on the subject, each from a different perspective, can be found here, here, and here. These articles, and the one below, reflect the views of the individual authors, not of the National Review editorial ... Read More
Elections

Hell, No

Editor’s Note: If you would like to read more pros and cons on voting for President Trump, further essays on the subject, each from a different perspective, can be found here, here, and here. These articles, and the one below, reflect the views of the individual authors, not of the National Review editorial ... Read More
White House

Hell, Yes

Editor’s Note: If you would like to read more pros and cons on voting for President Trump, further essays on the subject, each from a different perspective, can be found here, here, here, here, and here. These articles, and the one below, reflect the views of the individual authors, not of the National ... Read More
White House

Hell, Yes

Editor’s Note: If you would like to read more pros and cons on voting for President Trump, further essays on the subject, each from a different perspective, can be found here, here, here, here, and here. These articles, and the one below, reflect the views of the individual authors, not of the National ... Read More
Elections

Vote Your Conscience

At the 2016 Republican convention, Senator Ted Cruz spoke a controversial phrase: “vote your conscience.” I think about this phrase, this idea, fairly often. I’m not one to give advice on voting (or much else). But when asked for advice, I usually say, “Vote your conscience.” Sweet conscience! One of ... Read More
Elections

Vote Your Conscience

At the 2016 Republican convention, Senator Ted Cruz spoke a controversial phrase: “vote your conscience.” I think about this phrase, this idea, fairly often. I’m not one to give advice on voting (or much else). But when asked for advice, I usually say, “Vote your conscience.” Sweet conscience! One of ... Read More
Music

Stevie Nicks, Like Springsteen, Preaches and Preens

In the 1970s, Stevie Nicks and Bruce Springsteen made impressions on pop-music culture with romantic rock landmarks, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours album and Springsteen’s Born to Run. But their new 2020 releases, Nicks’s single “Show Them the Way” and Springsteen’s Letter to You film and album, make the ... Read More
Music

Stevie Nicks, Like Springsteen, Preaches and Preens

In the 1970s, Stevie Nicks and Bruce Springsteen made impressions on pop-music culture with romantic rock landmarks, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours album and Springsteen’s Born to Run. But their new 2020 releases, Nicks’s single “Show Them the Way” and Springsteen’s Letter to You film and album, make the ... Read More