Read e-book online American Burke: The Uncommon Liberalism of Daniel Patrick PDF

By Greg Weiner

Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1927-2003) could be most sensible often called a statesman. He served within the administrations of presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Ford; was once ambassador to India and the United international locations; and represented long island within the U.S. Senate for 4 phrases. yet he used to be additionally an highbrow of the 1st order, whose books and papers on themes starting from welfare coverage and ethnicity in American society to overseas legislation stirred debate and instructed coverage. Moynihan used to be, journalist Michael Barone remarked, "the nation's top philosopher between politicians seeing that Lincoln and its most sensible baby-kisser between thinkers when you consider that Jefferson." He used to be, Greg Weiner argues, America's solution to the 18th-century Anglo-Irish scholar-statesman Edmund Burke. either stood on the intersection of inspiration and motion, denouncing tyranny, protecting the relations, championing reform. but whereas Burke is sometimes claimed by way of conservatives, Weiner calls Moynihan a "Burkean liberal" who revered either the indispensability of presidency and the complexity of society. And a reclamation of Moynihan's Burkean liberalism, Weiner indicates, may possibly do wonders for the polarized politics of our day.

In its incisive research of Moynihan's political suggestion, American Burke lays out the phrases for this sort of restoration. The publication lines Moynihan's improvement during the vast sweep of his writings and occupation. "The important conservative fact is that it's tradition, now not politics, that determines the good fortune of a society," Moynihan as soon as wrote. "The important liberal fact is that politics can switch a tradition and reserve it from itself." In his skill to embody either one of those truths, this "American Burke" makes it bracingly transparent clever political philosopher is additionally an efficient political actor, and that commitments to either liberal and conservative values can coexist peaceably and productively. Weiner's paintings is not just a radical and carefully attractive highbrow exploration of 1 of crucial politicians of the 20th century; it's also a well timed prescription for the therapeutic of our damaged system.

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American Burke: The Uncommon Liberalism of Daniel Patrick Moynihan by Greg Weiner


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