Sunday, January 11, 2015

A House Divided and a Conservative Voice Stilled

Harry Jaffa, West Coast Straussian and founder of Claremont conservatism has died at a ripe old age. I first read him long ago and, in his fights with the neo-Confederates was on his side. But as a greater task he revivified the Conservative Lincoln saving him from the liberal embrace and the Unreconstructed criticism. William F. Buckley famously said of Jaffa, "If you think disagreeing with him is hard, try agreeing with him." The pugnacious Jaffa did not belong in California to my mind. I also just learned that Walter Berns, also in his nineties has also passed on. When I was young, and since, I read them both and they are brilliant Patriots. I think Jaffa wrote "Shakespeare's Politics" with Alan Bloom long ago. I'm going to go find it and remember the both of them. In a time where the ancients are shunted aside for glib commentary like, well, like you find here, it is good to remember that in our time there were still those who could walk comfortably with Aquinas and Aristotle. R.I.P.

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