The Josias Podcast, Episode V: Liberalism (Part 1)


The philosophers have only interpreted liberals in various ways. The point, however, is to own them.

Wherein liberalism is said in many ways, and revealed in Strauss’s war on the Redemptorists, and whether or not the Abbot of Heiligenkreuz should have the power of life or death over local peasants. The hosts are joined by Felix de St Vincent, for a rousing discussion over what liberalism is, when it began, and whether it is necessary to be “cruel to be kind, in the right measure.”

Stay tuned for part 2 where we determine whether opposing liberalism means embracing cruelty, discuss Cardinal Newman’s definition of a gentleman, and much more.

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3 Replies to “The Josias Podcast, Episode V: Liberalism (Part 1)”

  1. I suppose I shall have to wait for the next installment of the podcast, but I would be grateful to have certain points clarified by the hosts. Firstly, the terminology of “liberalism” (and ‘illiberalism” or however its opposite is named) seems unclear and unnecessary to me, when compared to the clear and natural terminology of Left and Right (“In Biblical language the just on the Day of Judgment are to be on the right and the damned on the left.”- Erik Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn). Why use the term “liberalism” when the term “Leftism” covers the ground more effectively?
    Secondly, in the discussion of the Sacrétemporal politic order, no mention was made of the mobility within that order. The son of a peasant could become a burgher, a burgher or peasant could be (and often were) ennobled. Once’s place in the order was determined not by the temporary position one fulfilled but by one’s ultimate place in the orderings of Divine Providence.
    Thirdly, the discussion of inherent dignity puzzled me, it seems that it was implied to be a purely “liberal” notion, but it has complete support of authoritative Papal teaching: “But just as in the living organism it is impossible to provide for the good of the whole unless each single part and each individual member is given what it needs for the exercise of its proper functions, so it is impossible to care for the social organism and the good of society as a unit unless each single part and each individual member – that is to say, each individual man in the dignity of his human personality – is supplied with all that is necessary for the exercise of his social functions.” (Divini Redemptoris 51)
    I would be most grateful for these clarifications from the hosts.

    1. Thanks for your comment! We’ll address the first and third points in the next installment of the podcast. On the second point: You are of course right. A certain amount of social mobility is necessary. What is disordered, however, is something like “The American Dream” where everyone wants to change their station in life.

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