Friday 27 July 2012
The Delusions of Modern Progressives
Roger Scruton’s conservative thinking might be labelled “High Toryism for Common People”. While his work has much of its genesis in English traditionalism, Scruton’s 2005 memoir, Gentle Regrets, is hilariously scathing of those who carried its banner in the second half of the twentieth century. This former grammar school boy turned against the Left after witnessing the 1968 student uprising in Paris and the arrival of “institutionalized nihilism”, but found little solace in his subsequent engagement with the British Conservative Party. Horrified at the inanity of upper-class Party stalwarts whose attachment to Tory doctrines in the mid-1970s was less a reasoned exercise than an “inherited disability”, Scruton nevertheless refused to accept Thatcher as the solution to moribund Toryism. Instead of enlisting as an intellectual Conservative, Scruton became a conservative intellectual, a particularly thankless and unpopular vocation in the 1970s.
The article can be read in full at the following link: