Where Conservatism Went Wrong:
A Review of The Great Purge: The Deformation of the Conservative Movement
Paul E. Gottfried & Richard B. Spencer (eds.)
The Great Purge: The Deformation of the Conservative Movement
Arlington, Va.: Washington Summit Publishers, 2015
All political movements need a history, and such histories, if well-constructed, almost always coalesce into myth. Once mythologized, a movement’s past can inform its present members about its reason for being, its need for continuing, and its plans for the future. And this can be accomplished quickly – and without the need for study or research – in the form of what Edmund Burke called “prejudice.” “Prejudice,” Burke says, “is of ready application in the emergency; it previously engages the mind in a steady course of wisdom and virtue, and does not leave the man hesitating in the moment of decision, skeptical, puzzled, and unresolved.”
Prejudice is a time-saver, in other words, and it puts everyone on the same page. These are two invaluable things for any movement which aims to effect political change. For those who wish to participate in any of the various factions of the Alt Right and learn its history and myth, they do not need to go much farther than The Great Purge: The Deformation of the Conservative Movement.