According to Bradley J. Birzer are "enthusiasm, wisdom and knowledge regarding their subject, and moral imagination." In this essay called "Liberal Education and Christian Humanism," Birzer quotes Dawson, Chesterton, Tolkien, and Kirk. I think this is the kind of "conservatism" I can most get behind. I am so tired of the tedious influence of Ayn Rand on much American conservatism. Both the Tea Party and the OWS people need to read more classical imaginative literature. I think I'm going to go down to the Occupy Milwaukee site and start reading The Lord of the Rings out loud.
Or, perhaps better, The Divine Comedy. Especially The Inferno.
I would modify Birzer's last sentence a little, though. "The best teachers—armed only with enthusiasm, wisdom and knowledge regarding their subject, and moral imagination[, and a living wage]—understand that."
Non sumus angeli!
HT: Andrew Seeley