Irving Kristol, considered by many to be the Godfather of modern Conservatism, has died of complications from lung cancer at the age of 89. Kristol was the husband of critic-historian Gertrude Himmelfarb, and father of two children; Editor of The Weekly Standard and Fox News Contributor William Kristol , and daughter Elizabeth.
Kristol, who once said the Republican Party was "foreign to me as attending a Catholic Mass," received a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2002 from President George W. Bush, who praised him as "a wide-ranging thinker whose writings have helped transform America's political landscape." f
Once a Trotskyist and a far-left Liberal of the 1930's, Kristol would soon sour on Socialism, and broke from Liberalism after the rise of the New Left in the 1960's. He called himself a "Liberal mugged by reality." His turn to the right was joined by countless others, including GOP Cabinet officials as Jeane Kirkpatrick and William Bennett and another neoconservative founder, Norman Podhoretz.his
"The influence of Irving Kristol's ideas has been one of the most important factors in reshaping the American climate of opinion over the past 40 years," Podhoretz said.
He was a flagship in the network of think tanks, media outlets and corporations that helped make conservatism a reigning ideology for at least two decades, the "vast right-wing conspiracy" that Hillary Rodham Clinton would claim was out to get her husband.
He was a fellow at a key think tank, the American Enterprise Institute, and at least two major conservative books, Jules Wanniski's supply-side manifesto "The Way the World Works," and Charles Murray's anti-welfare "Losing Ground," were published with Kristol's help. He was a contributor to The Wall Street Journal, writing a series of essays in the 1970s that called on businesses to invest in conservative scholarship and counter the "permanent brain trust" of liberal politics.
"More than anyone alive, perhaps, Irving Kristol can take the credit for reversing the direction of American political culture," liberal commentator Eric Alterman wrote in 1999.
Via: The Weekly Standard