The Conscience of a Conservative: The beliefs of today's most controversial politician—tomorrow he may be the most powerful man in the world
In 1960, Barry Goldwater set forth his brief manifesto in The Conscience of a Conservative. Written at the height of the Cold War and in the wake of America's greatest experiment with big government, the New Deal, Goldwater's message was not only remarkable, but radical. He argued for the value and importance of conservative principles--freedom, foremost among them--in con...more
This book does the job.
Senator Goldwater's prose is excellent and even inspiring at times. His primary thesis is that the expansion of individual freedom is the primary and only legitimate goal of government. The blueprint for the activities through which this...more
I must confess that I was disappointed to find the book lacking (in my opinion) much of the substance required to offer a sense of "conscience" to traditional conservative political philosophy. I respect the work for its thorough and concise treatment of a variety of subjects central to contemporary conservative though...more
After 12 years in San Francisco, I have found myself marginalized politically and reluctant to admit that I am a conservative. I'm amazed at how applicable Goldwaters thoughts from 1960 are to todays political discourse and find myself reinvigorated for debate and once again proud to admit my political vie...more
"The Conservative looks upon politics as the art of acheiving the maximum amount of freedom for individuals that is consistent with the maintenance of the social order ... The practice of freedom requires the establishment of order.... But ... the political power on which order is based is a self-aggrandizing force; that its appetite grows with eating. [The Conservative] knows that the utmost vigilan...more
Full of ideas that I think range from crazy to mind boiling? Yes.
Even if you disagree with everything Goldwater stood for, it's still arguably one of the more important books about the United States and US Politics.
Goldwater was a military hawk, believed that the federal government had no place in education, was anti-union, and decried the welfare state. The work isn't buttressed with footnotes or data, and he does nothing to defend or support his statements. I foun...more
Goldwater’s The Conscience of a Conservative is his carefully thought out philosophy and creedo of his conservative ideals. While I should state that I am not a conservative, I found his ideas to be clear and thought out. So bravo there.
And while I really detest political discussion these days because it’s become a pick-your-side battl...more
"Still, if you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival."
"There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when thre is no hope of victory, beause it is better to perish than live as slaves." Winston Churchill
"The first thing he (the...more
I have to say that I admired the authors arguments for their strict co...more
Students of political s...more
Barry Goldwater puts his philosophy of government in very simple, if not rigorously defined, terms - liberty should be maximized insofar as the preservation of social order allows. He then arg...more