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Prophets on the Right: Profiles of Conservative Critics of American Globalism Hardcover – April 16, 1975

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 351 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; First edition (April 16, 1975)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671219014
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671219017
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,591,572 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Nowadays, when most Americans think about people who are on the side of peace and against U.S interventionism, they tend to think about those on the Left. Of course, this isn't as true as it used to be, considering that many on the Left supported Desert Storm and the attack on Serbia. ...
However, as Ronald Radosh (no man of the Right) points out, many on the Right were opposed to U.S. imperialism, globalism, and war going back to the Spanish American War. In fact, the traditional approach of the Right is a non-interventionist foreign policy (often misleadingly called "isolationism.") On the other hand, it was those on the Left - such thinkers as John Dewey ...who supported U.S. involvement in foreign wars and smeared non-interventionists.
In this outstanding book, Dr. Radosh profiles five opponents of interventionism of the Right: Charles Beard, Oswald Villard, John Flynn, Robert Taft & Lawrence Dennis. These people didn't agree on everything, and one or two might not be accurately called members of the "Right." (Villard, for example, drifted from laissez-faire to support of Roosevelt's economic policy.) But they were against U.S. globalism. Radosh details their position with respect to entry into World War II and then their opposition (in whole or in part) to the Cold War.
What happened in the 50s and the 60s is that the Old Right was preempted by William Buckley and others (some of whom were Socialists and former Marxists) and the Cold War become a moral imperative, even if it meant endless U.S. intervention in the affairs of other countries. (This sad fact is well told in Justin Raimondo's RECLAIMING THE AMERICAN RIGHT.)
This is one of the most exciting books I've read in a while.
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Format: Hardcover
_Prophets on the Right: Profiles of Conservative Critics of American Globalism_ by left wing scholar Ronald Radosh, first published in 1975, is a book which takes a look at some of the forgotten and all too often maligned Old Right critics of American interventionism. Radosh, who originally began his career as a sort of libertarian socialist and later moved to the right, wrote this book under the guidance of such Old Right libertarians as Murray Rothbard. The thinkers whose profiles appear in this book offered criticism of American interventionism, beginning with the American intervention in the First and Second World Wars and culminating in the Cold War, as well as of the creeping influence of the state that interventionism brought. These thinkers include the Progressive historian Charles A. Beard, the editor-journalist of the liberal _Nation_ Oswald Garrison Villard, the noted titular head of the Republican party ("Mr. Republican") Senator Robert A. Taft, the economist and writer John T. Flynn, and the self proclaimed intellectual "fascist" Lawrence Dennis. Against the smears of "isolationist" these critics challenged the interventionist foreign policies of such politicians as Woodrow Wilson, F. D. R., and Harry Truman. They called into question America's role in foreign wars which did not concern its direct national interest. And, they often did so at great personal loss.

Charles A. Beard began as a Progressive historian whose writings on the Constitution of the United States challenged accepted belief. He came to challenge the foreign policy of Wilson and Roosevelt advocating neutrality. With the entry of the United States into the Second World War, Beard became a revisionist, attempting to show how F. D. R.
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Format: Hardcover
Throughout most of the Cold War, 'responsible conservatism' spoke with one voice. Typified by William F. Buckley and 'National Review' magazine, it advocated energetic opposition to Soviet expansionism -- an internationalist posture of military alliances, proxy conflicts, and 'war in the shadows.' Opposition to this policy came primarily, if not exclusively, from the Left.
Or so it seemed.
Now that the end of the Cold War has led to a 'conservative crack-up,' more voices on the Right are willing to risk being tarred 'isolationist' to stand up for a principled stand of non-interventionism, an approach Ronald Radosh quotes Nicholas von Hoffman as calling (speaking of the views of Sen. Robert A. Taft) 'a way to defend the country without destroying it, a way to be part of the world without running it.' In such a climate, the views of men like those described in this book are beginning to be rediscovered and re-appreciated.
Radosh's subjects -- Charles A. Beard, John T. Flynn, Oswald Garrison Villard, Sen. Robert A. Taft, and Lawrence Dennis -- cover both a relatively broad span of time and a wide ideological spectrum. Despite the subtitle's description of these men as 'conservative critics of American globalism,' several of them found themselves associating (or associated) with conservatives as a result of their criticisms, as opposed to their criticisms arising from an innately conservative philosophy. Beard, for example, advocated in the 1930s a centralized, planned economy. Villard, who began as a devoted free-marketeer, later was an enthusiastic supporter of the New Deal. One of the interesting strands of this book is watching how these men's political philosophies change and evolve (or devolve) over time.
Do these men have any relevance to us today? Absolutely.
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