Kevin D. Williamson

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Liars think everybody is lying, cheaters think everybody else is a cheat, and self-serving political hacks who misuse their offices think that that’s just how the game is played, that everybody does it.

Kevin Daniel Williamson (born 18 September 1972) is an American conservative political commentator. He is the roving correspondent for National Review.

Quotes[edit]

America is not an idea or a collection of documents, but neither is it a closed ethnolinguistic set. It is a nation in which relations among the people and between the individual and the state are defined by the terms of citizenship.
To my eye, there is more American greatness in a New England town hall than in all of Washington, and more American greatness in an Oregon apple orchard or a Rotary meeting than there is in all the tanks and rockets that ever have been.
In reality, economic xenophobia and ordinary xenophobia always end up colliding... Europe’s anti-immigrant and ethno-nationalist movements argue that ethnic solidarity is necessary to preserve the welfare state.
  • I am grateful to the men and women of our military for their service, but armies are only expedients, necessary evils. They should be kept out of sight for the same reason I keep the guns out of sight in my home. A military parade does not display greatness—it displays power. And that may be where I most part company with our new nationalists. To my eye, there is more American greatness in a New England town hall than in all of Washington, and more American greatness in an Oregon apple orchard or a Rotary meeting than there is in all the tanks and rockets that ever have been.
  • Nobody but nobody is quite so dumb as to believe that all, most, or even very many uses of firearms to prevent acts of criminal violence result in justifiable homicides. Most of them do not result in anybody’s being shot, much less shot dead, because most of them do not involve discharging a firearm. As it turns out, pointing a gun at a would-be assailant is in many cases a very persuasive gesture.
  • [T]he broad movement oriented toward advocacy for sexual minorities has become more hysterical and more insistent as the stakes have in general declined. This is characteristic of many similar political movements: We have much cleaner air and water today than we did a generation ago, but the environmental movement is six times as hysterical as it once was. It is a curious thing.
  • What we can and should acknowledge is that there is a difference between moral confidence and moral certitude, and that in both moral and political matters there is always a place for prudence and humility, for the facts of the case and the particulars of the time. A conservatism that fails to account for these is no conservatism at all.

Homogenity is Their Strength (2014)[edit]

"Homogenity is Their Strength" (10 August 2014), National Review
  • In Sweden, diversity is not their strength. Homogeneity is.
  • Sweden’s more liberal policy toward immigrants may be judged in no small part by the Stockholm riots of 2013.

The Whitest Privilege (2015)[edit]

"The Whitest Privilege" (8 July 2015), National Review
  • In reality, economic xenophobia and ordinary xenophobia always end up colliding. The nastier of Europe’s anti-immigrant and ethno-nationalist movements argue that ethnic solidarity is necessary to preserve the welfare state. Among ordinary Swedes, the topic of immigrants’ — non-Nordic people’s — relatively high rates of unemployment and welfare dependency is politically charged.

The Caste System (2018)[edit]

"The Caste System" (11 September 2018), National Review
  • Progressives conceive of themselves as a caste apart, a special and specialized group of enlightened men and women whose job it is to organize other people’s lives for them, a necessity because those people are too dumb to do it for themselves.
  • Liars think everybody is lying, cheaters think everybody else is a cheat, and self-serving political hacks who misuse their offices think that that’s just how the game is played, that everybody does it.
  • Because they think of themselves as a special enlightened caste, progressives care almost nothing about process. Process is for the little people.

A Fairness Doctrine for the Internet? (2018)[edit]

"A Fairness Doctrine for the Internet?" (12 September 2018), National Review
  • Facebook, Google, et al. operate in an almost uniformly Left-Democratic culture, and they heard a great deal from both organized and semi-organized efforts from progressives and left-wing organizations whose sole purpose in life is trying to discredit conservative figures and exclude conservatives from public discourse.

"Hold Them Accountable" (2018)[edit]

"'Hold Them Accountable'" (19 September 2018), National Review
  • The opposite case has been made, repeatedly, throughout the history of liberalism, liberalism being the philosophy most despised by the Americans who call themselves “liberals.”

Trump's Omar Comments and Our Eroding Sense of Citizenship (2019)[edit]

"Trump's Omar Comments and Our Eroding Sense of Citizenship" (21 July 2019), National Review
  • America is not an idea or a collection of documents, but neither is it a closed ethnolinguistic set. It is a nation in which relations among the people and between the individual and the state are defined by the terms of citizenship.
  • [M]y own view is that Donald Trump is incapable of being a racist in the traditional sense of that word, because racism is derived from a perverted and misapplied sense of loyalty, a sentiment from which President Trump is manifestly immune.
  • The idea that Ilhan Omar could — even as a matter of mass-dunderhead rhetoric — be treated as a non-citizen because the president and his admirers do not like her politics (which are quite unlikeable) does violence to the idea of citizenship per se. In that much, it is fundamentally and literally un-American.
  • “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies.” So said Abraham Lincoln in much more difficult times than these. We should resist the urge to treat our presidents as god-emperors, but Lincoln testifies to the fact that presidential words matter. Alas, so does Donald Trump.

External links[edit]