3 Quarks Daily, one of the classiest outfits on the internet, has awarded me 3rd Prize in its annual competition for “the best blog writing in politics & social science.” Harvard professor Stephen Walt, a formidable blogger in his own right and a model to younger academics like myself, was the judge. This is the post that won me 3rd Prize, which is officially called “Charm Quark.” And this is what Walt had to say about it:
Why are today’s so-called “conservatives” so enamored of far-reaching social and political transformations, not to mention costly and ill-fated efforts to export “liberty” at the barrel of a gun? Far from being traitors to true conservatism, Robin argues that today’s conservative radicals are drawing upon a tradition of discourse dating back to Edmund Burke’s fear that established orders cannot generate the passion and commitment needed to vanquish revolutionary movements. To defeat Jacobinism and its various revolutionary successors, in short, die-hard “conservatives” have to fight fire with fire. And from these deep roots arises a “conservatism” that takes no prisoners and leaves few traditions unscathed. It is the “conservatism” of NSC-68 (which told Cold Warriors not to shrink “from any means, overt or covert, that could frustrate the Kremlin’s design”), of the Patriot Act, and of today’s drone wars and targeted killings. It takes real imagination to help us see Burke afresh, and Robin provides it here.
Having only begun to blog in June of this year—here’s my first post—I can’t tell you how thrilled and honored I am by this award.
My warmest congratulations to Kenan Malik and David Graeber, who won 1st (“Top Quark”) and 2nd (“Strange Quark”) Prize, respectively. I’m very pleased to be in such company.