Thought for the Day: Are We Trapped in a Locke-Box?

With some of the leading National Conservative intellectuals—especially Yoram Hazony—casting shade on the imputed Lockeanism of the American Founding, it is worth recurring to just one of Willmoore Kendall’s fertile provocations about this point from more than 50 years ago:

“The emphasis of Locke’s political theory is, ultimately, egalitarian, since if the consent of all is necessary for the ‘compact,’ then each man’s consent is as ‘good’ as any other man’s; so that if you marry Locke you are ultimately without grounds for resisting current egalitarian trends—which is exactly where most of our Conservative intellectuals have ended up.”

Those is fightin’ words. Lace up your gloves for the comment section. (I’ll have some rejoinders from Tom West in due course. . .)

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