Fiasco Conservatism

"Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives."

John Stuart Mill
Economist (1806-1873)

1 comment:

Roadkill said...


John Stuart Mill is one of my favorite political economists. I still own the copies of "on Liberty" and "On the Subjugation of Women" that I read in college.

A note of context on that quote: Mill was a "classical Liberal," which means he advocated for expansive individual freedom of action. Thus he was an advocate of free markets and reduced government control of society. He railed against tyranny, which he saw in the power of political rulers and even in democratic majorities that imposed their will on the minority.

Conservatives in Mill's day were big government control freaks, who longed for the long-lost days of the absolute rights of kings.

Many commentators (not on this blog, unfortunately, but that's why I'm here) have observed that modern liberalism is more akin to big government monarchism in its acquisitiveness and pervasive quest for social control, whereas modern conservatism, properly understood, shares many of the libertarian and utilitarian values of classical liberalism.

Interesting irony. Oh well.

I highly recommend "On Liberty" if you have never read it. Mill was an extremely important thinker in the 19th century, and much of what he says has relevance today.