Conservative Writer William F. Buckley Dies

February 28, 2008 09:27 AM
by findingDulcinea Staff
William F. Buckley, 82, political commentator, TV personality and former editor of the National Review, died Wednesday at his Connecticut home.

30-Second Summary

The product of a patrician East Coast upbringing, a prep school education and Catholic finishing schools in Europe, conservative pundit William F. Buckley is recognized as a catalyst in the development of the modern conservative movement.

Blog The Moderate Voice writes that Buckley “made conservatism respectable ... It was Buckley more than anyone else who was responsible for the nomination of Barry Goldwater in 1964 and the coming of Ronald Reagan in 1980, who checked the liberal advances made since the New Deal in the 1930s.”

His publishing career started at Yale, where he was elected chairman of the Yale Daily News. In 1951, only a few years later, he published “God and Man at Yale,” a book that attacked the university's atheistic tendencies at the time. The book established Buckley as a voice of the right.

The editorial staff of the National Review, the newsmagazine he founded in 1955 and at which he served as editor-in-chief until 1990, writes that he kept conservatism “from drifting into the fever swamps. And he gave it a wit, style, and intelligence that earned the respect and friendship even of his adversaries.”

PBS television host Charlie Rose attested to the writer’s charm on a video clip of his show devoted to Buckley, calling him a “friend.”  In the same clip, Buckley says, “As you grow older, you become more exacting of your performances.”

Headline Links: Buckley on audio and video

Obituaries: William F. Buckley (1925–2008)

Reference: Buckley’s works


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