The Fourth Annual Meeting of the HL Mencken Club

Canon Wars: Rethinking the Conservative Canon

November 4-5, 2011 

Friday, November 4

Dinner & Banquet - 

Master of Ceremonies, Richard Spencer

Postprandial Speakers

Opening Remarks - Paul Gottfried

Remembering Joe Sobran - Fran Griffin

What Should a Conservative Canon Be? - Paul Gottfried

Saturday, November 5

9:00 to 10: 30 AM - What’s Wrong with the Conservative Canon?

Moderator: Tom Piatak

The WFB Myth - Peter Brimelow

Up From Liberalism? From Anti-Communism to Democratic Globalism and GOP Drift - Paul Gottfried

Liberal Values and the Seduction of the American Right - Jim Kalb

11:00 to 12:30 PM - Lost Traditions in Foreign Affairs

Moderator: James Kurth

The Spirit of George Kennan - Lee Congdon

"Human Rights" and Endless War - Michael Desch

Carl Schmitt and the Nomos of the Earth - Keith Preston

12:30 to 2:00 - Lunch

Real Virtue: Lessons from the Ancients - E. Christian Kopff

2:00-3:30 PM - Education and Intelligence

Moderator: Byron Roth

Missing the Genetic Link - Henry Harpending

The Limits of Charter Schools - Robert Weissberg

The Impossibility of Reform - F. Roger Devlin

4:00-5:30 - The Right in a Different Key

Moderator : Paul Gottfried

Fascist Intellectuals - Stanley Payne

Spengler and the Reaction to Democratic Equality -

Thomas Bertonneau

The Other “Old Right”: The WASP Elite - Richard Spencer

7:00-9:00 - Dinner

Why Read? - John Derbyshire

Speaker Biographies

Richard Spencer, former assistant editor at The American Conservative and executive editor at Taki's Magazine (, he is the founder and co-editor of

aul Gottfried, author of eight books including, After Liberalism: Mass Democracy and the Managerial State (Princeton, 1999); and Multiculturaism and the Politics of Guilt: Towards a Secular Theocracy (2002)

ran Griffin, founder of Griffin Communications and the Fitzgerald Griffin Foundation, publisher of Shots Fired, Sam Francis on America's Culture War (2007) and an upcoming collection of essays by Joe Sobran

Tom Piatak, a contributing editor for Chronicles magazine and and a regular contributor to

eter Brimelow, financial journalist, founder of, author of several books including Alien Nation: Common Sense about America's Immigraion Disaster (1995)

James Kalb, lawyer (J.D., Yale Law School) and author, The Tyranny of Liberalism: Understanding and Overcoming Administered Freedom, Inquisatorial Tolerance, and Equality by Command (2008)

ames Kurth, The Claude Smith Professor of Political Science at Swarthmore College, widely published author on international affairs and connection between politics and religion

ee Congdon, professor of history (emeritus), James Madison University; author of George Kennan: A Writing Life (2008), and numerous other books on central European cultural history.

ichael Desch, Associate Director of the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce and a member of the Department of Political Science at the University of Kentucky. Dr. Desch has written numerous scholarly and policy articles on international relations and national security affairs and is the author of two books: When the Third World Matters and Civilian Control of the Military.

eith Preston, chief editor of, he was awarded the 2008 Chris R. Tame Memorial Prize by the United Kingdom's Libertarian Alliance for his essay, "Free Enterprise: The Antidote to Corporate Plutocracy."

. Christian Kopff, author of The Devil Knows Latin: Why Americans Need the Classical Tradition (ISI Books, 1999); Director, the Center for Western Civilization at the University of Colorado

yron Roth, Professor Emeritus of Psychology, Dowling College and is author, most recently, of The Perils of Diversity: Immigration and Human Nature.  His work has appeared in The Journal of Conflict Resolution, The Public Interest, Academic Questions, and Encounter. His books include, Decision Making: Its Logic and Practice, co-authored with John D. Mullen and Prescription for Failure: Race Relations in the Age of Social Science.

enry Harpending, distinguished professor of anthropology and Thomas Chair at the University of Utah, and co-author of the book The 10,000 Year Explosion (2009).

obert Weissberg, author of Pernicious Tolerance and other books; Professor of Political Science, New York University; Professor Emeritus, University of Illinois 

F. Roger Devlin, independent scholar and the author of Alexandre Kojève and the Outcome of Modern Thought.

tanley Payne, Professor Emeritus, University of Wisconsin, author of 20 books on the history of Spain and on the subject of Fascism.

homas Bertonneau, Visiting Professor of English at the State University of New York College, Oswego, New York.  He holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from UCLA.

John Derbyshire, mathematician and cultural commentator will discuss his new book of the same title. He is the author of several other books including Prime Obsession: Bernhard Riemann and the Greatest Unsolved Problem in Mathematics (2003).