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Revisiting the conservative basics and Edmund Burke

| February 18, 2021 1:00 AM

Edmund Burke (1729-1797) was an Anglo-Irish statesman and philosopher. Burke is regarded by most political historians in the English-speaking world as the father of modern British conservative. Winston Churchill quoted him often, Russell Kirk’s “The Conservative Mind”, in 1953 used Burke as a starting point to conservative principles adopted by the modern American conservative movement.

I’m doing as Winston Churchill might have in revisiting Burke’s quotes, although my selection might differ slightly. Although Burke observed the “tyranny of free governments” he also said the following:

“Crimes lead into one another — they who are forgers are capable of being in incendiaries.”

The use of this quote could be leavened against the common criminal who’s severity of criminality escalates through time. But it is equally applicable to white collar criminals or of a once impeached president, not convicted and facing a second impeachment trial in the U.S. Senate after an incendiary incitement to insurrection on January 6th.

In welcoming those involved in past highly unethical or even criminal behavior into one’s political party and then not restricting them highly while in office, Edmund Burke’s warnings are not heeded, back to conservative basics is needed. My wish is that more study of Burke might occur in the coming years and perhaps used on the right.

ERWIN CURRY

Missoula, Mont.