Russell Kirk Quotes

There ought to be inequality of condition in the world. For without inequality, there is no class; without class, no manners and no beauty; and then people sink into public and private ugliness.

This word “ideology” signifies the notion that mankind can be governed by abstract political formulas, regardless of a people’s historical experience, and notwithstanding the complexity of human affairs. Ideology is the negation of politics as the art of the possible. The ideologue sets up a sham religion and promises salvation – not salvation through grace […]

The ideologue cries, “Follow me, and I will lead you to the Earthly Paradise!” But no Earthly Paradise exists, or can exist. It is entirely possible, nevertheless, to contrive an Earthly Hell. Once in power, the ideologue becomes the humanitarian with the guillotine. For this ideologue, in the line of George Orwell, is the man […]

History is one of those few subjects about which practically everybody in a society – especially a democratic society – needs to know something… for the functioning of… any civilized society the mass of people must have some reasonable ability to read and write, some rudiments of humane literature, some simple mathematics – some historical […]

The conservative thinks of political policies as intended to preserve order, justice, and freedom. The ideologue, on the contrary, thinks of politics as a revolutionary instrument for transforming society and even transforming human nature. In his march toward Utopia, the ideologue is merciless.

Not by force of arms are civilizations held together, but by subtle threads of moral and intellectual principle.