James Burnham and Our ‘Soul-Sick’ Elite: A Conversation with Julius Krein

PDCAComes now to Liberty Law Talk, Julius Krein, founding editor of the explosive new journal, American Affairs. We discuss the crack-up in our politics and in the conservative movement through the lens of James Burnham's classic work, The Managerial Revolution.

The San Francisco Compromise: A Conversation with Michael Anton

san franThis conversation with Michael Anton explores how the gargantuan wealth of Silicon Valley allied with San Francisco Progressivism and is now redefining American culture and politics. But how durable is the alliance?

Is Peter Thiel a Prophet We Can Believe In?

Allen And Company Annual Meeting Draws Top Business Leaders To Sun Valley, Idaho

It seems like everyone–but especially conservatives–is talking about Peter Thiel these days. One sees his name all over. The traditionalist conservative Intercollegiate Studies Institute has made the venture capitalist and PayPal cofounder this year’s speaker defending Western civilization. I met Peter (and sat cozily beside him for two days) at a theology conference sponsored by First Things, where he shared his quite singular interpretation of Genesis. Last December, I went to a Straussian conference on Burke and Strauss, funded, of course, by Peter Thiel.

I (and 60,00 or so others) recently got an email from Jonathan Last of the Weekly Standard, who began by saying that he often disagrees with Thiel; he thinks his praise of the innovative benefits of monopolies, for instance, applies “only in the narrowest cases.” Still, “right or wrong, or somewhere in between,” Peter’s writing is always “interesting,” and he is “one of our more important public intellectuals.” Thiel’s big claim, that “the collapse of technological progress over the last 40 years is the root of our cultural, political, and economic malaise,” is worth arguing about.

You know, it really is.

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Rescuing American Prosperity: A Conversation with Joel Kotkin

Class

This latest podcast is with Joel Kotkin, America’s Demographer-in-Chief, on his recently released book, The New Class Conflict. Kotkin and I discuss his grave warning of an American future that no longer contains the promises of democratic capitalism. Two groups, in Kotkin’s telling, have converged and share a vision of America that is unconcerned with economic growth, shared prosperity, and the need to rein in state power. The book’s opening argues that this class of tech entrepreneurs and the "Clerisy" pose a fundamental challenge to America's self-understanding as a nation of economic mobility: In the coming decades, the greatest existential threat…

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The State of Our Liberty is Confusing

I appreciate John McGinnis’s account of the state of our liberty. He’s right that by some objective measures liberty is on the decline. But, a consistent individualist might say, liberty is on the march when it comes to same-sex marriage, legalized marijuana, and the general front of “lifestyle liberty.”

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