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In Praise Of The Unprincipled Conservative

'They are quite happy to take the world as it is'

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EwVqBY_cFGo?rel=0&w=525&h=330]

Philosopher Peter King (above), from his short book of short essays, Here And Now:

I am almost serious when I argue that a principled conservative is one who happily admits that they do not have any principles. They do not wish to impose a worldview on anyone and are quite happy to take the world as it is. Conservatives know that there can be no consensus in society but merely the accommodation of difference. To impose one view at the expense of all others has little to do with truth, but is rather merely an expression of power. Indeed, it is worse: it is power without authority, which can only come when power has a legitimate basis.

Conservatives are people who wish to protect things. They recognise what is valuable in their culture and their daily lives and work to sustain these. This is not about principles, but is a matter of reaction. It is a disposition based on vigilance and on an awareness of the dangers posed by others who wish to sacrifice the present for a future only they can imagine. When you come across those with such principles, sit them down and buy them a drink. It will keep them off their feet and off our backs.

Must. Have. Pint. With. This. Man. Soon. I can predict without fear of contradiction or disappointment that he has proper theology and geometry.

UPDATE: A reader kindly points out that I have confused my Peter Kings. My PK is in the UK, not in Toronto. I’ve removed Canadian PK’s image. Very sorry!




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