Sunday, October 16, 2005

Liberal conservatism in the blogosphere

I'd like to welcome a new blog to my blogroll -- All Things Beautiful by the Baroness Alexandra von Maltzan, one of my new friends out here in the blogosphere. In a recent e-mail, she described herself to me as a "liberal conservative," given that her views "cannot be all immediately slotted into the common agenda for either political side." And she went on: "That in my mind is the true spirit of an educated conservative, whose views become more liberal by the sheer virtue of having gained a broader knowledge, resulting in much less extreme positions."

Fair enough. I'm quite conservative about my liberalism (i.e., I believe that liberalism ought to be conserved), and I agree that the true or at least original spirit of (modern) conservatism -- that is, Burkean conservatism (as also found in the conservative liberalism espoused by Matthew Arnold, the great 19th-century liberal critic of liberalism) -- is very much akin to the sort of non-ideological, educated liberalism that I profess to be at the core of my political philosophy. Socrates's liberalism, I would say, filtered through various streams of modern political liberalism.

Alexandra and I are on opposite (and opposing) sides of the current American political divide (though not too far apart for comfort), but our philosophical approach to politics is very much the same. I'm expanding my blogroll to include some of the better voices on the right (those of us on the left and in the middle need to pay attention to what's going on over on the right -- I've been linking to right-wing blogs and other conservative sites quite a bit recently for precisely this purpose (scroll down)). Alexandra is a welcome addition to the blogosphere, and I'm sure you'll be seeing more of her here at The Reaction (which, whatever its political leanings, refuses to participate in echo-chamber blogospherics).

To begin, though, see her excellent post on "St. Judith The Martyr" -- self-styled martyr Judith Miller, that is. (See my recent posts on Miller and The Plame Game here, here, and here.) She's also written extensively on the Harriet Miers debacle. Click to her blog main page and scroll down.

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