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Saving Elephants | Millennials defending & expressing conservative values

Oct 4, 2022

In an age where what passes for the archetype conservative are the likes of Candace Owens, Bill Mitchell, Sean Hannity, Matt Gaetz, Tomi Lahren, and Donald Trump, it can be discouraging for those of us who take pride in the rich legacy and colorful history of thinkers on the Right to be associated with such grifters, demagogues, and charlatans.


Trying to define conservatism is challenging and trying to compile a list of individuals who best exemplify conservatism is problematic.  Yet this is becoming increasingly important in a world where “conservatism” is quickly being coopted by reactionary nationalist populists who have little to nothing in common with the namesake.


In this episode Saving Elephants host Josh Lewis offers his list of conservative thinkers well worthy of your time and attention. 



This list is imperfect and incomplete.  If I were to revisit the list next year or possibly even next week, I’m sure there are plenty of names I’d believe should supplant the names here.  Some of these individuals may even be uncomfortable with the label “conservative”, though they all share aspects of the broader conservative worldview.  The names below are not listed in order of preference or importance, but they are all insightful and noteworthy.


The fifty individuals discussed in this episode are noted below.  If you’d like to learn more about each one you can check out the original blog post of Fifty Conservative Thinkers for a brief bio and links.


Josh’s (Incomplete) List of Fifty Conservative Thinkers Worth Your Time

Edmund Burke

Milton Friedman

Wilhelm Röpke

David Bahnsen

F.A. Hayek

John Adams

Frederick Douglass

Thomas Sowell

James Madison

Barry Goldwater

Ronald Reagan

Bradley J. Birzer

Russell Kirk

Matthew Continetti

David French

Gertrude Himmelfarb

George Nash

Stephen J. Tonsor

Roger Scruton

Jacques Ellul

Whittaker Chambers

Michael Oakeshott

Eric Voegelin

Timothy Carney

C.S. Lewis

G.K. Chesterton

Jonah Goldberg

Wendell Berry

T.S. Eliot

Ross Douthat

Mary Eberstadt

  1. Stanton Evans

Irving Kristol

George Will

William F. Buckley

Kristen Soltis Anderson

Robert Nisbet

Carly Fiorina

Arthur Brooks

Marian Tupy

Charles Marohn

Patrick Deneen

Harry Jaffa

Walter Williams

Frank S. Meyer

Alexis de Tocqueville

Lord Acton

Leo Stauss

Willmoore Kendall

Yuval Levin