REVIEW: Russell's Reviews Volume One # 9

Saxon Brenton saxonbrenton at
Mon Mar 3 20:03:33 PST 2008

[2nd posting.  Sorry, I have no idea why this vanished into the aether 
while other posts have gotten through]

On Sunday 2 March 2008 Rob Rogers replied:
> On Mar 1, 4:21 pm, Saxon Brenton  wrote:
>> On Saturday 1 March 2008 Tom Russell wrote, among other things:

> I can certainly emphathize with the reaction both you
> and Tom have had to Buckley's statements.  Yet while I'm
> no defender of either Buckley or his work, I feel the
> need to note that people are complex creatures, and that
> it would be difficult to find any truly admirable person
> who hadn't said or done things one might find unsettling.
> I have always admired and respected Thomas Jefferson,
> for example, and yet I have had to wrestle with the fact
> that the author of the Declaration of Independence
> owned slaves throughout his lifetime, and that this
> Enlightenment sage had some fairly unenlightened views
> regarding the native tribes of the American West.
> My conclusion is that I respect Jefferson on the whole,
> while acknowledging that I can't agree with everything he
> said or did.  To some degree, I feel that way about
> Buckley, too -- I'm appalled by the opinions Tom credits
> him as having, yet my impression of Buckley was that his
> was a conservative voice in the United States who wasn't
> tied to the religious right, a Republican who wasn't
> afraid to be an intellectual.  I'd like to believe that
> aspect of his legacy will be respected and imitated.

A very good point.  And certainly the impression I have 
of Anal-Retentive Archive Kid that I have in my head is 
perceptive enough, inquisitive enough and idiosyncratic 
enough to synthesise his own opinions without being 
slavishly immitative of any other group.  That said, out 
of the suggestions offered so far 'liberatarian of 
conservative' bent probably sums him up this best.
(And by weird coinceidence, I was looking through some past 
notes this morning for something totally unrelated, and 
came across a scrawled suggestion to myself that perhaps 
ARAK might be an advocate of a 'no rights without 
responsibilities' ethos (which from due to my poor 
handwriting I think is communitarianism, but I'm having 
trouble matching it up on websearches).  I can see why 
ARAK might find aestheic appeal with such a notion, but I 
also  think he's both sufficiently perceptive and paranoid 
to see the downside of making individual rights subject to 
the social value judgements of a central authority.  ARAK 
has no problem in comparing the desire for control of the 
US Religious Right to both the Tablian and the Soviet 
Saxon Brenton
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