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Like Haidt, Girard observes that ideology becomes a source of tribal identity, but at its most extreme it becomes increasingly dependent not on the principles that it espouses but on the psychological kinetics of its adversarial relationship to its rivals. Positive philosophy gives way to the need to feed on rivalry as a source of meaning. This is why extremist ideologies tend to be built upon fabulist views of a possible future: the more spectacular the vision, the more unreachable the goal, the more immersive the cause.

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In the penultimate chapter of The Righteous Mind, Haidt shares with the reader the disorienting moment when he realized conservatism wasn’t so backward and parochial after all:

»As a lifelong liberal, I had assumed that conservatism = orthodoxy = religion = faith = rejection of science. It followed, therefore that as an atheist and a scientist, I was obligated to be a liberal. But Muller asserted that modern conservatism is really about creating the best possible society, the one that brings about the greatest happiness given local circumstances«

Why Secular Liberalism Isn’t Liberal – Forfare Davis, The University Bookman

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Kaj je pravzaprav konzervativizem?

Na internetnem portalu Kritika konservativna se je v zadnjem času začela krvavo potrebna resna razprava o konservatizmu, liberalizmu in njunem medsebojnem razmerju. Ta razprava je v Slovenijo prišla z vsaj polstoletno zamudo, saj naš prostor, kot je v svojem spisu ugotovil že pisec Barbarossa, pravega konservatizma doslej sploh še ni recipiral. Na njegov kritični esej o razlikah med liberalizmom in konservatizmom sej je elokventno odzval pisec Bertl, ki se prišteva h klasični liberalni tradiciji ter trdi, da »sta konservativnost in liberalizem nekaj povsem skladnega«. Ker se kot konservativec s to trditvijo ne morem strinjati, sem se odločil, da se tudi sam vključim v debato in poskušam podati svoj pogled na razmerja med »nelagodnima bratrancema«, kot je liberalizem in konservatizem nekoč označil ameriški sociolog Robert Nisbet. Pri tem mi bodo kot opora za razpravo služile nekatere Bertlove trditve, ki jih bom kritično komentiral.

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