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John Willson

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“Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.” —Sun-tzu, ca. 400 BC; or Machiavelli, 1520 AD (maybe) —Michael Corleone, The Godfather Part II, 1974 (certainly) Forrest McDonald, the greatest historian of the era of...
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Editor's Note: Stephen Masty, a Senior Contributor to The Imaginative Conservative, passed away December 26th at the age of sixty-one. We pay tribute to him with this essay by John...
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The Conservative Heart: How to Build a Fairer, Happier, and More Prosperous America, by Arthur C. Brooks (Broadside Books, 2015) The great Elton Trueblood, who really did write about happiness, said...

The last clear memory I have of my great-uncle Atwood Putnam (yes, his ancestors were those Putnams, including “Old Wolf” Israel, but we never got any of the money—well, more about that later) was of him...
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(Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join John Willson as he examines an "economy" and what that really means. —W. Winston Elliott III, Publisher)
great society
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Presidency, n. The greased pig in the field game of American politics. Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary The history of...
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Glenn Frank One of our great cultural temptations since the 1960s is to think of songsters as poets. Stephen Foster never claimed to be, nor did Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, or Oscar Hammerstein. Suddenly,...
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Brad Birzer was thinking, the other day, about intellectual refugees from Nazi Germany and other parts of Nazi-controlled Europe during the years leading up to and including World War II. He asked me if I...
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I came across this the other day, from the Washington Times: Kids flee football in light of NFL violence, Pop Warner participation plummeting. The author is Nathan Fenno, and I hasten to say that I am...
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John Lukacs and Wendell Berry This is the best introduction to the historical craft of John Lukacs. History and the Human Condition does not replace the much longer Remembered Past, a wide-ranging selection of Lukacs’s...
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Norm Abram’s little book Measure Twice, Cut Once: Lessons from a Master Carpenter (Little, Brown, 1996) is, I was about to say, a minor classic on the building arts. But I must revise that opinion. It...
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In the early 1980s, I became one of six men in the Western World who knew how to tie a bow tie, all by myself, and I did not know who the other five were. I...
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I was out driving this morning, doing some errands. A car ahead of me was going about 30 in a 55 speed limit zone, and as usual I was annoyed. Going so slow, I was...
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The Smart Take from the Strong: The Basketball Philosophy of Pete Carril by Pete Carril Bad shooters are always open.–Pete Carril Dr. Pete Carril is a bit of a snob. I emphasize...