Strauss and the Neo-Cons

Thanks for the post Nyc. I knew what the picture would be before I clicked on the link. I heard Strauss at one or two of the Friday night lectures. I have a copy of “Persecution and the Art of Writing.”

I think there was some kind of scandal involving the teachings of Strauss, Dean Goldwin and the neo-conservative movement.

I mentioned to one faculty member that it would be wonderful if St. John’s could make some podcasts of seminars, have a discussion forum, and perhaps even post some student essays.

The response I received was something to the effect that “there are things that one says in the privacy of the classroom which one would NOT state publicly.”

No mention was made of Strauss or Goldwin but my first thought was that any institution must be cautious about any statements which are made public because it can become ammunition for people to misconstrue.

I never realized during my four years at St. John’s how amazing and loud the silence was about political issues and the war. Not one word was ever mentioned about anything current or controversial. It must have been difficult for some people to discipline themselves to such silence. I must say that I never heard one word that sounded “un-American” or “anti-war” or “pro-war.”

It’s too bad that a school like St. John’s cannot feed more into the public domain of the Internet. I suppose this does happen whenever students or alumni choose to blog their thoughts in social networks.

Google search on : six degree separation hitler strauss bush neoconservatives


The history of American Neoconservatism arguably dates to the early 20th century and several academic German/Jewish intellectuals including Professor Leo Strauss who was purportedly a secular Zionist (Professor of Political Philosophy, University of Chicago) the philosophical progenitor of many contemporary public policy elites including several neoconservative Bush administration officials and other members of the Washington establishment in both political parties. Strauss was an avid opponent of modern liberalism having been an admirer of Martin Heidegger and by extension Nietzsche’s philosophy (itself Darwinian). It was later developed by several first generation neoconservatives including Norman Podhoretz (for many years editor of Commentary) and Irving Kristol. Later, in the second generation came Irving’s son William (now editor of Commentary’s “replacement” The Weekly Standard), Michael Ledeen, Robert Kagan, Charles Krauthammer and Richard Perle among others. . . .


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