Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Jonah Goldberg's Tribute to WFB

It was written in 2005, but it's worth reading now, on the day that the giant of modern conservatism died.

William F. Buckley understood that conservatism can only be a partial philosophy of life, because any calling which claims to be a whole philosophy of life is not one at all. It is a religion, and in all likelihood a false one. Armed with this conviction, he changed the world by arguing with those who could not comprehend that a man could be joyful, charming, generous, and passionate about hobbies and people far outside politics while walking against what all the right people insisted was the tide of All Good Things. In this he remains the archetype for conservatism, properly understood.

Conservatives believe in dreams but we don't believe they can ever be made reality in this life. Nonetheless, when Bill Buckley once asked, "Have you ever seen a dream walking?" he may not have realized that for conservatives, at least, he was the answer to his own question.

I have yet to read God and Man at Yale, but it's on my Amazon wish list, and I'll eventually get to it.

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