Friday, May 14, 2010

The Problem With Woodrow Wilson.

If you want to claim everything stemming from the Western Enlightenment tradition as “progressive” you’re free to do so. But analytically, where does that get you? By this logic we’re all progressives—and by all, I mean conservatives, libertarians, Bolsheviks, liberals, anarchists, and Maoists—because we’re not Medievalists. But if progressive is to mean something more concrete and specific—say, the ideas associated with the New Republic, Herbert Croly, Teddy Roosevelt’s Progressive Party, and the administration of Woodrow Wilson—then Scott’s use of “progressive” is almost meaningless.

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