Round Table Discussion

What Is Paleoconservatism?

Man, Know Thyself!

Paleoconservatism is the expression of rootedness: a sense of place and of history, a sense of self derived from forebears, kin, and culture—an identity that is both collective and personal. This identity is missing from the psychological and emotional makeup of leftists of every stripe—including "neoconservatives"—and is now disavowed by mainline conservatives of the Republican variety, seemingly bent on eradicating as much of the primeval stain as they can from their consciousnesses while apologizing for the faint discoloration that remains.

Identity—like patriotism and loyalty, among other things—is a problem for conservatives to the extent they see it at odds with the concept of Economic Man, for whom the term has no significance unless preceded by the word "brand." For the left, the only valid human identity is economic status, which determines one's political position in the context of the class war: Other identities (racial, ethnic, tribal, cultural, religious, national) are dangerous because they distract from all-important economic distinctions, and because they create enmity among groups who the dialectic has determined should be allies. The left, which (with the help of drugs and other deviant social behavior) in the 80's created the crisis of homelessness, is and always has been homeless itself: men and women without a country, without a people, without...

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