The former director and trustee of the National Review is now free to speak of the intellectual impoverishment of the conservative movement. He likens the modern day conservative leaders to Ingsoc, the totalitarian groupthink government in 1984.
Whatever its past accomplishments, the conservative movement no longer kindles any “ironic points of light.” It has produced fewer outstanding books even as it has taken over more of the intellectual and political landscape. This trend will only continue. Worse, no reckoning will be made: they hope in vain who expect conservatives to take responsibility for the actual consequences of their actions. Conservatives have no use for the ethic of responsibility; they seek only to “see to it that the flame of pure intention is not quelched.” The movement remains a fine place to make a career, but for wisdom one must look elsewhere.Tags: 1984, National Review, Conservative Movement, conservatism, Orwell, GOP critics